Saturday, June 30, 2012

Alive and well....

Don't think just because I've been MIA for a few days means I've fallen off the wagon!

I've actually been doing pretty good food-wise this week (we're ignoring the 10pm Whataburger dinner last night.  We had an event at church that ran late and we were desperate for food! ha).

I have a few random things floating in my head that I want to write about, but I'm heading off now to take a nap!


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Stupid Texas Heat

Today's Workout:  2.87 miles...then I gave up.


I was going to run really early this morning, but when my alarm went off, I turned it off and stayed in bed!  My full body is sore from class yesterday.  I increased some of my weight, put forth more effort, and I can really feel it today in my back, glutes and legs.

So I headed out the door at 9:30am.  I had a couple of hours with no meetings, so I decided to take advantage of it.  I took the dogs with me and they managed to crank out a 12:09 min mile.  Yay puppies!  Of course since we have gotten home, they've done nothing but lay on the tile trying to recover. I'm going to whip them into shape yet.

I brought them home and went back out.  I had to make up some of the slow time from taking them....but I still ended with a 11:30 min/mile overall.  I walked too (gasp).  It's just too stinking hot!

Oh....and I had a know I've been complaining that I'm running slower outside than I normally run....and it's really irritating me.  I looked back at my log on my phone and realized I ran fastest in March/April....before it got so hot.  Obviously the heat HAS to play a role there.  Especially for someone who HATES the heat.  So I'm going to give myself a break until the fall....then we're going to work on speed again!'s June...almost July...and I ran outside!

That alone (for me) is a miracle!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Attempting to Raise a Healthy Child

Today's Workout:  BodyPump (1 hour)
1.5 mile run after class (first mile was 9:20...yay!)

I'm not sure if this post is going to offend anyone or not.  I'll tell you is not my intention to do so.
I am NOT judging the way you raise your children or the food choices you give them.  This is my view and what I try to do with MY child, and just maybe it will inspire another family to live a healthier lifestyle.  Or maybe it won't! :) People constantly judge me and make fun of me for not giving my daughter a free for all with sweets and grease, but I do my best not to do the same in return.   I know we are doing what we think is best for her, and that's all we can do as parents.


My husband and I have a 3 year old.  We do our best to teach her about living a healthy lifestyle (I'm also still trying to teach the hubs...HA).  She knows I exercise at the gym.  She sees me go for runs and likes to stretch with me when I get home (it's adorable).

When it comes to food, I try to create a healthy balance.  She may have pancakes for breakfast, but for balance, we use sugar free or low sugar syrup and lots of fruit and yogurt.  She may eat super processed Cheerios but we balance with adding bananas and blueberries, and as always, as side of yogurt.  I'm not super restrictive.  I'd actually LIKE for her to eat healthier, but I'm still working on broadening her love for various foods (i.e. those strange things called eggs)!

Contrary to popular belief, my child DOES have sugar...probably on a daily basis.  It's not my preference, but I do not totally eliminate sweets.  I will, however, purchase low-sugar fruit snacks or sugar-free popsicles.  She can have one Hershey kiss as her dessert but not five.  We limit milk (foreign concept to most, I know) and we never ever drink juice.  It's milk & water only at our house, and she is totally ok with it. I don't feel like I'm depriving her (as it's nothing she needs) and better yet, she doesn't feel deprived.  I see no reason to introduce bad habits at such a young age.

She eats all-natural peanut butter and almond butter.  She would rather come home and eat an almond butter sandwich than a Happy Meal (the girl doesn't even like chicken nuggets...crazy).She enjoys her green smoothies in the mornings.  At a restaurant last weekend, she CHOSE grilled chicken over chicken strips, water over milk or juice and apples over french fries.  It was a true proud mom moment!

 It's about healthier choices and moderation....the same as it should be for us adults.

We discuss healthy food choices.  I do tell her if something has "too much sugar" or "is bad for her" and also try to teach her about the healthy things she eats.  Obviously I'm not going to tell her that certain foods will make her's not all about's about being healthy (although I do hope by learning to eat right, she will be able to avoid any future weight issues).  I get so tired of hearing "Poor baby. Just let her have it...she's a kid!".  I'm not going to feel guilty for telling my daughter that she can't have donuts or pop tarts or chocolate bars every day. 

I am going to teach her to be healthy...hope that she will live a long, healthy life...and in return, teach her children to do the same.

After all, isn't that really what we all want for our children?  To live happy, healthy lives?  It starts at home...and it starts young.  We have to teach them the way to live.  Children need guidance (whether they think they do or not).  And let's face it...there is a childhood obesity problem in our country.  Fast foods, processed foods, TV and lack of exercise all contribute to that. 

I hope one day Olivia will thank me for raising her on healthier foods rather than on chicken nuggests or hot dogs for every meal.  And if not, then I can at least say I did my best and I tried!  

Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.  Proverbs 22:6
Surely it applys to our health as well, right?! :)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Back at It!

Workout:  3.7 miles

I didn't run Friday, Saturday or Sunday.  I just decided my body & maybe my mind needed the break since I struggled so much last week.

I woke up this morning ready to hit the pavement....and so were my dogs.  As I was lacing up my shoes, they both sat at my feet, wagging their they just knew they were going to go with me.   So I grabbed their leashes and off we went.

We looped back to the house after 1 mile, where I dropped them off to go out on my own.

I wish I had re-set my GPS since that first mile was a 13 min mile.  By the time I finished, I averaged 11:02.  I spent a lot of time trying to make up for that initial slow mile!  Most of the time, when I looked down to check, I was running a sub 10:00 mile....usually closer to 9:30-40.  So while my overall pace wasn't great, I know for the miles I ran alone, I did push myself more than I did last week....and it felt good.

On a different note, for those of you who drink my current FAVORITE breakfast (click here for recipe), then you may want to try a couple of things to make it even better!

1.  I've been adding 2-3 cubes of ice to it to make it colder.  This is a pretty simple concept, but I'm loving drinking this really cold!  My blender, on the other hand, isn't a huge fan of the ice.  I really really really want a good blender....maybe one of these.  I hear they're pretty good.

2.  The other "change" I've made to this recipe is I've been adding cinnammon.  It's SO YUMMY!  My 3 year old has been devouring them since I've made this change!

Do you have a nice blender you could recommend? 
I just have like a $25-35 cheap one from Target....and with daily use, it would sure be nice to have a high powered one!

Friday, June 22, 2012

LaZy...or TiReD...

The verdict is still out on whether or not I'm being lazy this week and making excuses or if I really am just physically tired and need some rest.

Regardless, when my alarm went off at 4:40am, I hit snooze.  When it went off again, I hit the "off" button.  I just could not make myself do it this morning.  My husband had to be at work really early today, which means I needed to be at the gym absolutely no later than 5:30am to get in a decent workout....and well, it just didn't happen.

So...I  plan to take it easy the next couple of days and hope that cures me!

Today's plan is to do some free weights at home, some pushups, maybe some abs....spend 30 minutes just doing some strength training (my fav).  Then I may just take tomorrow and Sunday completely off.  Since I've pretty much had to force myself out the door to go run, maybe I just need the break.  I thought my vacation would have been break enough, but I'm pretty certain I came back more tired.  Moms of 3 year olds don't exactly get to relax on vacation!

When it comes to food, I've been right on track this week.  I honestly don't think I've had anything I wasn't "suppose" to have.  I was starving yesterday and ate a lot more than normal, but I stuck with healthy foods.  Today won't be quite as easy, as I will be eating out....but we're all allowed a cheat day, right?!

I did weigh...and I'm right about the same weight I've been for 3 months.  I'm afraid my body has found its "happy weight" and well....I'm not quite ready yet!  I still feel another 10 pounds or so would be ideal.  I have a couple of trouble spots I'd really like to be gone!  But as I've said before, it's all my fault....I've not exactly tried that hard the last couple of months and haven't been as dedicated in the food category as I need to be.

80% diet & 20% exercise

How badly I wish it was the opposite!!!!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Just not feeling it...

Today's Workout:  4.08 pavement miles
Slow miles....11:04 min/miles

I'm really in a "I don't wanna workout" zone this week....but I'm doing it anyway!  Sometimes you just have to suck it up, right?!

I almost talked myself out of running this morning.  My legs just feel tired and heavy.  I battled with myself for a good 10 minutes trying to figure out whether to go to the gym or get back in bed (I was already up with coffee poured).  I ended up not doing either and ran outside.

I saw another tarantula today.  I'm really not a fan of nature.  That sort of thing would never happen on the treadmill!  I really can't decide if I like outdoor running or treadmill running best.  They both have benefits.  My mind wanders more when I run outside, which is good, but it usually means I run slower.  And I have NO EXCUSE for running 11 min/miles.....I should be easily keeping a 9:30 pace by now...definitely nothing over a 10:00 pace!  I don't know what's going on with me the last couple of weeks and why I am running so much slower.  *Sigh*

Tomorrow is strength today, so I'll probably just do a 1-2 mile warm-up before hitting the weights.  Then maybe I'll take Sat/Sun off.  We shall see.

On another note, we had spaghetti squash for dinner again last night with our leftover meat sauce.  I cooked it longer this time and it was much better and not nearly as crunchy!  I even liked it plain.  I think my husband is on board with this being a "keeper" as well.

So, nothing newsworthy to report (the usual for my blog).

So....I'll end with this....

Happy Thursday!
I can't believe it's almost the weekend again.  Yay!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

My Not-So-Athletic Dogs

Today's Workout:  I planned to take today off.  I woke up with lower back pain and figured it would be best.  I ended up taking my dogs for a SLOW 2 mile jog/walk.  We averaged just under 14 min miles and burned about 250 calories.

They were so hot and tired.  I basically had to drag them back to the house.

They are so pitiful and out of shape.  Kind of like me 2 years ago I guess! :)

One thing I don't get is WHY they are so out of shape.

I mean, don't these looks like super active & athletic dogs to you?!?!?!?


The life of luxury.

Must be nice!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Spaghetti Squash

Today's workout:  BodyPump
(1 hour, around 500 calories burned)

It's been nice eating healthy the last couple of days.

I've had very healthy and fresh lunches.

I told you yesterday I was going to try out spaghetti squash for dinner.

I wanted to try something different but decided it would be best to stick to a traditional meat sauce in order to even get my husband to try it.

When I served it, he said "Oh, huh....those aren't noodles.  Is this suppose to be like your cauliflower mashed potatoes?".

The verdict:  This is a keeper!

I cooked the spaghetti squash whole at 400 degrees for about 35 minutes (poke holes in it so it doesn't explode).  Then you cut in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, get a fork and tear out the squash.  The "noodles" were a little on the crunchy side.  I think another 5-10 minutes in the oven would have been better.
Jason said he'd eat it again.  He just said "it's different".  They really didn't taste much.  It was much more filling than I expected it to be as well. 

We will most definitely be having spaghetti squash again!  We will probably still eat whole wheat pasta on occassion...but I'll substitute this often for sure!

Fewer calories and WAY fewer carbs....go ahead, give it a try!

SERVING SIZE: 1 cup (cooked)

Calories 300
Sodium 183 mg Total Fat 1 g Potassium 0 mg Total Carbs 43 g
Dietary Fiber 3 g Sugars 1 g Protein 8 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Calories 174
Sodium 4 mg Total Fat 1 g Potassium 62 mg Total Carbs 37 g
Dietary Fiber 6 g Sugars 1 g Protein 7 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Calories 42
Sodium 28 mg Total Fat 0 g Potassium 181 mg
Total Carbs 10 g Dietary Fiber 2 g Sugars 4 g Protein 1 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Monday, June 18, 2012

Longest Run Yet

Today's Workout:  7.1 treadmill miles

When I turned off my watch after stretching, 1018 calories burned.

Averaged 11 min. miles which is slower than I like, but I know that when I run longer, I have to run slower.  It just makes sense.

I struggled.

I hadn't ran in 1 week (other than 2 miles on the beach), so I was having a tough time in my mind. I hate it when I can't zone out and constantly check my watch or the screen.  It makes for a pretty miserable run.  My goal was 6.5 miles but by the end, I got another burst of energy, FINALLY got in a zone and just kept going.

I love meeting new personal goals!'s to hoping my legs function properly tomorrow and shin splints stay away!

Food Co-Ops

I recently learned of a local food co-op from a girl at church.  She posted her steals on facebook and I knew I needed in on it!  This was my first week to do it, and I'm so excited about it.  Pickups are on Saturdays, and since we were out of town, she picked mine up for me.  I stopped by her house on our way home from the beach yesterday and I'm so happy I signed up to do it!

All of this....for $15!
($25 if you wanted all organic)

The baskets are approximately 1/2 veggies & 1/2 fruit.  You don't know what you are going to get until you get there, but from the pictures I've seen from prior baskets, it's pretty normal stuff.  It seems like there are always one or two "odd" things, which I'm excited about because it will make me try things I wouldn't ordinarily purchase!

This weeks basket included:  potatoes (which I never cook, but guess we will soon), a small watermelon, 2 spaghetti squash (SO excited to try this), plums, apricots, mushrooms, grapes, lettuce & a pineapple.

There are add-ons you can do each week, but since it was my first week, I just went with the plain basket.  I might do more this next week.  Ashley gifted me a loaf of bread that is pretty tasty!

Have you ever participated in a co-op?  Love it?  Not for you?
I'm going to give it a try for at least a few weeks and see how it goes.  It's going to force me to eat more fresh foods, which is good for us all! shouldn't be this excited about fruits/veggies, but I can't wait to see what is in store for next week's basket!

So Long Vacation & Sweets

I've been at the beach since last Tuesday.  Vacations are great, but for a homebody like me, it's always nice to be back in the comfort of my own home! 

Vacation & Food

We went with my husband's family and stayed at a beach house, which means we were able to avoid eating out the entire time.   When it comes to meals, I really didn't eat that bad.  I at a lot of almond butter sandwiches for breakfast and lunches, even when others were eating cinnamon rolls and sausage and pulled pork sandwiches.

What I learned during this trip is that my mindset regarding food really has changed.  I don't even want that stuff anymore....not every day anyway.  Don't get me wrong...I don't eat 100% healthy 100% of the time (I will always devour Mexican food and have occassional treats), but the thought of cinammon rolls for breakfast isn't appealing AT ALL. Two years ago I wouldn't have thought twice about it....and two days ago, I didn't even think about it at all.  I didn't even have an internal battle about "eat it or don't eat it".  I just didn't even want it.  It was that way with a lot of meals.  I just naturally opted for something healthier without thinking about it.

One place where I wasn't strong at all was desserts....brownies, cookies, ice was all there, and I ate it pretty much after every meal.  I'm pretty sure sugar has a very close relation to crack.  Once you get a taste, it's so hard to give it up.  I'm so beyond ready to cleanse myself of that sweet addiction this week!  By Friday, my stomach really began to hurt constantly.  My body doesn't like that much junk food anymore.  And I'm SO happy about that.  It gives me more hope that I've made a permanent change for the better.

Vacation & Exercise

We got there Tuesday evening, so I knew I wouldn't want to get up and run Wednesday.  My plan was to run Thursday and Saturday.  I did get up and run on the beach Thursday.  My 2 miles felt like 4...great for the legs!  Then I did lunges, squats & pushups.  My plans for Saturday fell thru.  It rained nearly all day, and by the time it cleared, we decided to take my daughter down to the beach.  I did get a lot of upper body work building sandcastles while we were there.  Does that count at all as a workout?!?!?!

I avoided the scale today.  I'm going to give my body a few days to adjust before I get too depressed. :)

I plan to go to the gym and run this afternoon.  We're having spaghetti for dinner with spaghetti squash as our "noodles".  I'm so excited to try it (and I am not a fan of spaghetti)! 

Have you ever used spaghetti squash as a noodle replacement? 
I hear it's pretty good!  I'll let you know how it goes!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Nutella - a health food?

I *heart* nut butters.

I pretty much eat almond butter or peanut butter on a daily basis.  A lot of days, I have both, but there is one phenomenon I will never understand....and maybe you know something I don't, and if so, please share!


I have only had it one time (at a hotel breakfast) and knew instantly it would be too addictive to ever purchase and keep in my home. 

Shortly after consuming it a couple of years ago, I found it on the grocery store shelf and decided to take a look at the label.  Just maybe I could take it home with me!  Afterall, it's pretty much advertised as a health food, right?

After reading this label, I returned the jar to the shelf and have never picked up another one.

Click to enlarge
thanks random internet picture as I don't own a jar to take my own pic!

Here are my non-expert opinion:

200 cals per serving - ok, that's equivalent to peanut butter
18% saturated fat is kind of high (my almond butter only has 5% and PB 12%)
Protein - little low but I can get protein other places
Sugars:  21g.  WHAT?  My rule of thumb is to avoid anything with more than 7-8g of sugar per serving..usually less (unless I'm just outright eating a cookie or cake or something).

Ok, then I moved on to the ingredient list.

The #1 ingredient in this "nut butter" is NOT nuts.  It's SUGAR!  The first ingredient is sugar folks (which means it's the main ingredient.  Just in case you are new to label reading, the ingredients are listed in order from what is used the most to don't want to see sugar as #1 unless you are eating a lollipop or a sugar cube).

#2 ingredient:  Modified palm oil.  I'm not positive here, but I don't think we're suppose to eat much "modified" anything....much less modified oil.  That just sounds weird.

#3 ingredient - finally, the nut appears.

Just to give you a comparrison:  the almond butter I eat has ONE ingredient:  Almonds.
The peanut butter I eat has TWO ingredients:  Peanuts.  Less than 1% salt.

It honestly baffles me how they can portray Nutella as a health food.

Don't get me wrong, the stuff tastes good!  But no's chocolate sugar!

If you must eat it, then I think this should be an indulgence....something to have on special occassions, but not something that should be part of a regular diet.  I actually had someone tell me one day how they have tricked their kids at into having nutella sandwiches for breakfast and how they don't know that they're having something healthy.   I smiled and kept my mouth shut.  It wasn't someone I was very close to, so I'm not going to bust their bubble.....but man, I wish people would educate themselves a little more!

I purchased chocolate almond butter HOPING it would taste like Nutella.  It didn't.  Of course, I think it only had 9g of sugar that came from evaporated cane juice, but hey, it wasn't bad.  My daughter liked it, but I'm not likely to purchase again.

So.......if you know something I don't, feel free to dispute any of this!  I'd love to hear it....cause I WANT to eat this stuff....I just can't bring myself to do it!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Dreadful Shins....still...

Today's Workout:
2 miles on the treadmill (20 min) and BodyPump (1 hour)

So...I told you I bought new shoes about a week ago because my shins had suddenly started hurting.  Well, my shins aren't really any better.  Maybe I just need to adjust to the new shoes?  Or maybe it's natural since I'm running slightly more than normal?

Lately, as I've been running, I've been focusing on form....making sure I'm not heel striking and that my hips are in alignment and all that jazz.  Maybe my form was better before I actually started trying to have good form?!?! 
Really, I'm just at a loss.

I guess the good thing is that after about mile 1-2, my shins get better, but I'll probably regret fighting thru it when they are super sore tomorrow :(

Any ideas?  Anyone?!

Monday, June 11, 2012

It's Monday...blah.

Today's workout: 
5.15 treadmill miles

I did intervals for the first 30 minutes (jogged 5.5mph for 3 minutes, sprinted 8.5mph for 1 minute, repeat...and repeat...and repeat....).  For the reminder, I tried to keep it close to 6.0, but I'd go down to 5.8 or up to 6.5.  I don't know why I have such an issue with keeping a steady pace!  I always want to go faster....but then I get tired, so I have to back off a little....and it's just a neverending cycle!  All said and done, I ended up with about a 10:00/mile pace.  Sigh.

For the first time ever, I've been keeping track of my mileage (on the right over there....).  I wanted to hit at least 20 miles each week/approx 80 per month and gradually increase.  I'm pretty sure that's not going to happen this month, particularly with vacation coming up soon.  I refuse to give up a couple of days of weight that lowers my mileage too.  Oh well!  Will keep trying! 

I don't really have much to say today....and yet, this is a wordy post. Shocker! :)

I'll try to get my thoughts together and post something later that is at least slightly interesting.

Until then....

Happy Monday everyone!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Diet Coke Freedom

Today's Workout:  3.48 miles in the heat
I wasn't watching the time or the mileage.  I just decided at some point to head back home and call it quits.  The heat and the sun were just too much.  I knew I should have gone to the gym today instead!  I hate summer!

Today also marks 5 months clean from Diet Coke (or any soda).  If it is possible to be addicted to diet soda, then I think I was.  I might as well have just injected it straight into my bloodstream everyday.  I always drank a lot of water (so I justified the diet coke), but I drank a ton of diet coke. 

One day, I decided to eliminate it once and for all back in January.


Is it really turning to formaldehyde in our bodies and making us all die slow tragic deaths?  I don't know.  Maybe.
Is it giving us cancer?  I don't know.  Maybe.
Is it making us fat?  I don't know.  Maybe.
There actually is quite a bit of convincing research that states diet sodas do prohibit weight loss by tricking your body into thinking it has had suger and yada yada yada.

But I do know that there is nothing natural about it.

I do know that it is just a bunch of chemicals, and that can't be good for anyone.

There are those who say I've just replaced my diet coke addiction with coffee.  Yes and no.  I only drink coffee in the mornings, not all day like I did diet coke.  I don't put ANYTHING in my artificial sweeteners that are in diet coke.  No chemicals.  No calories.  And studies show a little caffeine is actually beneficial.  Coffee is also naturally grown, so it's GOT to be a better choice, right?!

I'm sure a diet of 100% water all day would be ideal....and maybe one day I will get there, but for now, I'm still proud that I've managed to conquer diet coke!  That alone was a very large battle for me!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Paranoia? Self doubt?

Today's Workout:  I warmed up on the treadmill with HIIT.

I finished off with about 40 min of weight training/abs/stretching.

If you are a member of a gym, then you know there are plenty of people that go and put in their time, but they don't necessarily put forth the effort that is truly required to make a change.

I can't tell you the number of people I see leaving the gym who barely break a sweat, if they broke one at all.  Or the people who leisurely walk or ride a stationary bike while reading their favorite novel.  Of course, there are instances where this is appropriate.  Maybe you're recovering from an injury or a surgery, but for me, if I'm not dripping sweat when I leave, then I don't feel like the "workout" was worth it.  In my opinion, if I go and burn 125 calories in a 30 minute leisurely bike ride, well, I'd just assume stay home.  Harsh?  Maybe.  But I think in general, people just don't push themselves hard enough.  I can't figure out why.  I dont' know if it's self-doubt or what, but for me, I get a lot of satisfaction from knowing I pushed as hard as I could push and did the best I could do.

I've seen the owner of my gym watching me on more than one occasion (or the man I've at least deemed as the owner...someone has given me his description, and I think this guy fits the bill)...he has a very serious demeanor....a big, serious guy.  It makes me he must be thinking "she doesn't belong here"....or "she's totally doing that wrong".  Well, this morning, he came up to me and asked me my name.  I was thinking "Oh, no, what'd I do?".  I told him my name, and he high-fived me and said "Good job Tessa.  I like seeing someone working hard.  Keep it up".  Guess he is tired of seeing people reading their magazines too.

That made my day. 

Maybe I'm NOT doing it all wrong after all!  Lol.

Funny how we can doubt ourselves when we really have no reason to.  I've been working out now for a couple of years.  I'm not really clueless.  I know I'm queen of doubt and need to work on that!

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Only a few more days until we go to the beach....and I'm afraid my body looks just like it did six weeks ago! Oh well!

Thursday, June 7, 2012


Today's Workout:  NONE!
I'm taking the day off!

When my alarm went off this morning, I realized just how tired my legs felt.  I usually take a weekend day off, but I decided to let it be today instead.  Besides, it's rainy and dreary outside, so it made sleeping in until 7am pretty nice!

I didn't want to say anything in case it wasn't "for real", but for 3 days in a row, I'm down a little more than a pound!  Now, I know it's just a pound, but hey - it's the first pound I've lost since I've been working from home (since mid-April)!   I've not been actively pursuing weight loss lately and haven't really anticipated the scale moving when I step on it (I'm queen of maintenance I think), although I need to buckle down and finish the job....but it was still nice to see a small change.  I'm pretty certain I have been building more muscle since I have been home.  I've noticed my shoulders and arms seem to be more defined, and my thighs are for sure becoming more muscular (thanks to running).....if only I could lose those aweful inner thighs!  As a woman, I know I'll probably have to deal with that forever, but surely a few more pounds of fat loss would help!

Tomorrow's Plan:  some early morning treadmill running (maybe HIIT) and definitely strength training.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

To run....or not to run

It's a holiday!

What? You didn't know?

It's National Running Day!
(I wouldn't have known either except that I'm a fan of The Cowtown Marathon page and they've been posting about a celebratory run this morning for the past week or so!)

To celebrate, I ran 4.7 miserable miles on the treadmill (at a slower pace than normal...I averaged about 10:30/mile today). They were tough miles today.  I fought and fought my way thru it.  But....I'm so happy I did!  I feel better now for sure! 

I've taken it upon myself to give you a few inspirational running pics.

You're welcome! :)

I honestly don't expect everyone to run!  I understand why people don't want to or THINK they can't!  But most of us are capable. 

A year ago I "couldn't" run a mile...and to be honest, I didn't want to. I had ZERO desire to run.

I worked out.  I worked out a lot.  And I worked out hard with awesome instructors and trainers that pushed me beyond what I thought I could do (miss you Janna!).  But run?  NO WAY. 

This past December, we did a pyramid contest in our gym.  Everyday you added one exercise to the one you did before.  Well, I was doing the advanced level on all exercises.  The first exercise was to run 1/2 mile (each level had 1/2 mile, but the advanced level had to run it instead of walking or jogging).  Every day, that 1/2 mile at a run instead of a slow jog was my most dreaded part of the workout....not the boy pushups, not the dips, not the step ups, not the jumping was that little HALF MILE!

But I did it.  And every day, I got stronger.

All of that to, I consistently run 4-6 miles at a time.  Six months ago, I didn't want to run 1/2 mile.   And you know what?  I think I even like it now!!! *gasp* 

When you run, you go into this zone where your mind can wander....sometimes I let it wander, sometimes I pray, sometimes I just listen and sing (in my're welcome again)....and sometimes I can't get into that zone and I fight my way thru the entire run, like today.  It's just my time.  I also love it because it's an easy way to set measureable goals!

If I can do it, so can you...if you want to! 

Monday, June 4, 2012

New Running Shoes

For the first time, I went to a specialty running store (Luke's Locker) and purchased a pair of decent shoes.  In the past, I'd always picked shoes pretty much by the way they looked....and by price.  This experience was much different than that!

The salesperson had me take off my shoes and walk around.  He said I had a pretty high arch, which means that I don't necessarily need a lot of cushion, as my arch can absorb much of the shock.  I thought that was interesting.  So you flat-footed people....get some decent padding in those shoes! :)

I did my best to NOT purchase based upon how the shoe looked but rather on how it felt.  The pair I picked are lighter than what I have had in the past.  They aren't a totally minimalist shoe, but they are a little more lightweight.

I ran about 3.5 miles yesterday and a little over 6 miles today in far, so good. I'm sure I'm suppose to ease into a new pair of shoes.....but I like to just jump right on in!

When my husband saw them for the first time he said "oh, um, your new shoes....they're um, bright".

I informed him that they serve a purpose.  They will get my legs where they need to go and I'm not running in any fashion shows anytime in the near future.  I don't wear running shoes for anything other than exercise....ever, so I don't really care what they look like.  And I didn't think they were THAT bad!

I'm just happy the salesman didn't make me try on this pair, as it would have been difficult for me to be indifferent:

Apparently, they can't keep these bad boys in stock
No offense if you own these....I'm just pretty conservative when it comes to know, blacks, browns, grays...the occassional green or blue or pink, but never ever something this bright!  With weight loss comes more maybe next time!  LOL

So the salesman told me with the mileage I'm currently running, I will need new shoes every 4-5 months!  What?!  These things cost more than twice what I would normally pay!  UGH! 

So...whoever wants to start contributing to my running shoe fund, feel free.  I'm not too proud!  Oh, I'm kidding.......kind of.

The Perfect Chip Alternative?

I've seen various pins on Pinterest (shocker) of zucchini chips & yellow squash chips.

Could this be the perfect solution to my chip addiction?  Could it possibly be replaced with veggies??? 

I was at least willing to give it a try.

Who wants to donate a mandoline to my kitchen?  Would make this task so much easier!

Luckily, I had a super cute helper!

The finished product:

Ok, so I knew they would shrink.  I knew this was a dehydrating process and shrinkage would occur.  They went from about half dollar size to dime & penny size!  These were the smallest "chips" you've ever seen.  TOTALLY not salsa-worthy!

TASTE:   They tasted about like I expected that they would...kind of like fried squash, but not fried.  I seasoned with Mrs. Dash table blend. 

WOULD I MAKE THEM AGAIN?   Um, this is probably a big negative.  It's not like they tasted bad.  They were actually good.  But they were SO TINY and TOOK SO LONG TO MAKE.  Granted, you didn't have to do anything, but these guys were in the oven about 1 1/2 hours.  It's just a lot of energy for very little product!

Do you have a mandoline?  Do you love it or do you find yourself slicing things with a knife more than actually pulling it out and using it?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

What's for Lunch?

I've been needing a change for my lunches.

So, for the first time in months, I purchased a frozen entree. It's been in my freezer over a week, so I decided to go ahead and eat it for lunch today.  GAG.

When I first began my weight loss attempts, frozen entrees were a staple in my house.  I would buy 10 at a time....perfect for 2 weeks of work lunches.  Smart Ones were my favorite, but there were a couple of  Lean Cuisines I enjoyed as well.   I probably ate them for about a year.  At some point, many months ago, I decided to quit eating them. 
  1. I was sick of them.  You eat something daily for a get pretty sick of it.
  2. I wanted to eliminate the sodium...most of them have crazy amounts of sodium...and I retain water better than anyone on the planet.
  3. I wanted to begin eating fewer processed foods (never mind my daily chip intake....but every bit helps, right?!)
For a while, I traded the frozen entrees for salads.  I would make the salads at night.  I let juices from tomatoes and banana peppers serve as my dressing (I'm not a HUGE salad dressing person anyway).

I also would prep food on Sunday afternoon.  I would cook several chicken breasts and use them for salads during the week.  I would also cook pasta & veggies, add in chicken and have fresh meals for my lunches.

I did all of this for a while.

Then at some point, I traded those things for peanut butter & jelly sandwiches.  EVERY DAY.  Then I decided to share some days with tuna sandwiches.....but again, the sodium in canned tuna is crazy high and I found I was retaining enormous amounts of water.  So I went back to PB&J daily.

Since I'm now working from home, you would think that it would be easy to change up my lunches, but I'm basically still eating sandwiches every day....just almond butter instead of peanut butter!

FYI - LOVE almond butter....and as a bonus, it's got a lot less saturated fat than peanut butter. We all know almonds are a healthier option than peanuts, so it makes sense that almond butter would be better for you.  My 3 year old loves it as well.  Ingredients:  Almonds. Period.  Can't beat that, right?!

I'm thinking about going back to salads. I want to eat "cleaner".  I think I felt better when I ate less processed, although I know I'll never completely eliminate processed foods.  I wish I was that committed!

All of this to say....I'm thankful for the frozen entree.  It served its purpose in my life at one time, and I know it has helped a lot of people lose weight; however, after choking down my lunch today and throwing away the "meat" that was in it,  I realized why I quit eating them and have committed to saying good-bye to them again.  :)

If anyone has any great lunch ideas, feel free to share! 

If you eat salads, what protein do you use?  Do you cook it once for the entire week for ease?

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Another Weekend "Off"

It's looking like it's going to be another weekend free from hard workouts.

My husband is out of town, and the gym has very limited daycare on Saturday and none on Sunday.  I'm thinking maybe a long walk later with the stroller; however, I'm due for some strength training.  Maybe I'll work my upper body with pushups, weights and some abs.  Either way, I'm determined to do SOMETHING today.

Since I won't be running, I am going to try to be pretty mindful of what I put in my body.  They say it's 80% food, 20% working out.....sure do wish it was the other way around!!!!

Oh, I DO plan to get new running shoes today, so that's exciting.  I've been getting shin splits the last couple of weeks....and rumor has it, the reason is because I need new shoes.  Hope they work!

Hope you all have a heatlhy and fun weekend!

It's going to be pretty uneventful here!