Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Well, I'm excited to share more!
Even though my "getting hot" adventure is not only about losing weight; I've made no secret of the fact that I'm on a slimmin' and trimmin' mission.
When I first started this blog I weighed 253. I lost 10 of those pounds but then crept steadily upwards over the next year to 271.
So it's with excitement that I share that the scale today once again read... 253! Okay 253.6. But still!! It was a moment.
I know why I gained much weight over last year and I've shared many of those reasons right here with you. But since I've opened up this blog (this January), removed some of the shame, started moving, and yes tracking my food (grumble grumble)... it's made a difference (a -18 pound difference). Who would have thunk it? And for that I feel proud of me!
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
I posted about the start of my little herb garden here. And now here was a real recipe to give the mint a try.
In my blogiversary post, I said I'd be sharing new recipes I'm trying. I'm not a food photographer, but I managed to capture some pics of the peppers in progress.
For the recipe I needed 2 tbsp of chopped fresh mint.
I'll admit that once I have gathered all of the ingredients, I like to line them all up like on the cooking shows. I feel the need to double and triple check I have everything before I dive in. I'm a rookie in the kitchen so this somehow feels comforting.
This recipe calls for: cooking spray, 4 large yellow bell peppers, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1/2 c. chopped onion, 1/2 c. chopped zucchini, 1 c. seeded and chopped orange or red bell pepper, 4 garlic cloves- minced, 1 tsp dried oregano, 3 c. cooked whole-grain couscous, 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, 1-2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 c. crumbled feta cheese, and optional: salt, freshly ground black pepperI'd like to take a knife skills class. It took me so long to chop up all of the ingredients.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat baking dish with cooking spray. Slice tops off yellow peppers. Using a spoon, scoop out seeds and ribs inside each pepper.
Place 1 inch of water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Place yellow peppers in pot. Cover and steam for 5 min. Remove peppers from pot to drain.They also said you could microwave the peppers. I decided to steam the peppers. Next time I would steam it for more than 5 min. to make it a little softer.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, zucchini, orange or red bell pepper, garlic, and oregano.
Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 min. Remove skillet from heat and stir in the cooked couscous, mint, lemon juice, and feta cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper.This was the first time I'd made coucous. I read the directions and was surprised it was so easy. Just boil, stir it in and let it sit?
Stuff each pepper with approximately 1/4 of the mixture. Stand peppers upright in the baking dish. Cover with a lid or aluminum foil and bake for 15 or 20 min., or until peppers are tender.I decided to put the mixture in 5 peppers. Next time I'd only put it in 4 so it would be totally stuffed to the brim with the yummy mixture.
The peppers were super filling so when I was serving them I cut each in half. This is a pic of my friend T giving them a go. My friends tasted them and approved! And I figured out the calories and fat grams and for one pepper its 353 calories and 14.5 grams of fat. Not too bad, especially since I only ate half of one as a serving. Success!
Featured recipe originally from the Taste for Life test kitchen
Monday, March 28, 2011
and then a few months later ask her to run a 5K with you...
don't be upset when she holds you accountable for that 5K because she has a better memory than you and remembers both things you asked of her.
That's a loooong way of saying there was no squirming out of the 5K I'd convinced my friend D to run with me.
I actually thought I'd gotten out of it when the weather forecast predicted 100% chance of thunderous rain. But by Saturday, the Oakland clouds had cleared and it was time for me to lace up and head on over for the run.
I would like to think I'd usually be thrilled by this adventure; running a beautiful 5K at dusk with hundreds of amazing community members sharing the love. But on this particular day my nerves had gotten the better of me. I felt derailed and discouraged by my last run; feeling like I was starting over and also remembering how queasy I'd gotten after a mile.
But by the time I was at the starting line all of my nerves relaxed. I saw about a half dozen people I knew. There were tons of folks planning to walk. And it was a beautiful evening. What could hold me back from enjoying this 5K except for myself?
I set a goal to run the first mile and then check in with myself to see how I felt (since that was when I got super queasy feeling last time). At the first mile I actually felt great and I decided anything past this was just money in the bank since I'd achieved the goal I'd set for myself. Somehow releasing that pressure gave me enough umph to get to mile 2 (which oddly felt much longer than mile 1). At mile 2 I decided I was just going to go for it. I was going to try and run the whole thing. I'd run a 5K on the treadmill without stopping. And I'd run this distance and then some outside with only a few stops. So I figured, I should at least push myself and try.
That last mile was a doozy and I definitely almost stopped at least 5 or 6 times. But... I didn't. I kept running and when I saw that finish line up ahead and those hoards of cheering people, I was in it all the way. I actually kind of sprinted to the finish line once I was in the home stretch. I was totally buoyed by the energy of the people cheering and the surge of feeling proud of myself.
I grabbed some post race water and oranges and started looking for D since she'd finished ahead of me. And that's when the blogosphere worlds collided! I'd seen on twitter that @FoodieMcBody was going to run the same 5K. But even though I'd read her blog a bunch of times I didn't expect to actually run into her and recognize her. When she passed right by me in the post race hubbub I wasn't exactly sure it was her. And though I'm not too shy, I didn't want to go up to someone and ask if they are FoodieMcBody and be wrong. But I braved the potential embarrassment and went to say hello and yup! It was her.
Such a total treat to run into someone who's story you've been following and cheering on in the virtual world! Her blog is so great and she's a mega inspiration. I was officially starstruck! She posted a shout out on her race recap which definitely had me blushing-- almost as red as I am in this post race pic we took.
Thanks D for encouraging me to go the run and for Foodie McBody for being just as sweet and amazing in person!
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
I keep my food logs on paper.
I write my to do lists on paper.
I annotate, underline, and make notes in the margins of my paper books.
And most notoriously of all, I clip out articles, recipes, and quotes.
Some of you are cringing. The idea of all of that...paper... "But did you know there is an app for that, what about the kindle, haven't you heard of epicurious.com."
Yes, yes, yes. But it works for me... usually. I'm so glad the internet is such a wealth of new recipes, but there's nothing quite like the sweet potatoe pie recipe written in my grandmothers handwriting.
Lately, I've been recommitting myself to getting organized. You saw our disaster of a storage closet, and my frightening pantry. And I even took a picture of my overflowing inbox. When it comes to my love of paper, I have been setting some real limits and also putting some structure into place. Sure I can tear out that article about top 5 ways to bring joy into your life, but it has to have a home (and on top of the latest pile doesn't count).
Autumn, over at Space for Living, inspired me with her amazingly organized Recipe Binder. And since I have been attempting more meals at home, I knew it was time to create a binder of my own.
First I just corralled all of the various recipes I'd been clipping and saving. Most were already in a little file in my file cabinet (and I wonder why I never managed to make any of those recipes). So after unearthing a few dozen (or more) clippings I sat down and went through them. Yes, that recipe for souffle looks divine, but will I ever really make it? Probably not. But that recipe for Jambalaya? I'm all over it.
I had a few recipes that I'd made consistently, my world famous lasagna, my curried lentil stew, and the print outs showed it. Various stains and watermarks on the paper were evidence of my numerous attempts in the kitchen. I placed these and all of the recipes I'd love to give a go in clear sheet protectors.
I also decided I'd keep various food prep "tips" I'd gathered in this binder too; tips on selecting the best olive oil and on organizing a "healthy" refrigerator.
Once my recipes were in their plastic sleeves, I sorted them into temporary categories. Desserts and sweets, main dishes, tips, etc.. I didn't make permanent labels for them yet, because I'm not entirely convinced these are the titles I want to keep. For example, I have a recipe for hummus and I'm not sure where that should live? Should I make an appetizer section and put it there? I'm not ready to commit to a whole dip and sauce section, but a hummus recipe seems out of place under the main dishes category.
I also made a section for meal planning ideas. I had about a half dozen different lists of my attempts to organize a real meal plan. I compiled all of these together so I can use them each for inspiration as I move forward.
I have to confess, I am in love with my new recipe binder. It actually makes me want to cook! Who would have thunk it?
What about you? Do you have a recipe binder of your own? Any other paper lovers out there? Or have you made a switch over to the world of electronics?
Monday, March 21, 2011
My last long run with our training group felt kind of surreal. Sure there were quite a few stops and even a couple of walks, but all in all I ran 5 of the 6 miles in our Saturday long run. Since then I took a week off to recover from my cold and then did 2 workouts last week to try and get revved again. Even though I was taking it slow these past two weeks, I kept thinking about how I felt during that long run; excited about my progress and stronger than I had before.
Tonight was a different story.
We were to run 3 miles at our "marathon pace". Faster than our long run pace and slower than our timed mile pace. I am so not at the "think about your pace" stage. I'm just focused on breathing and staying upright. I felt pretty confident that I could do the 3 miles, kind of confident.... almost confident....
I started out fine, a little too fast, but I eventually found my stride. A mile in I had caught up with the other runners who had stopped to stretch. I joined them to stretch a bit and then we set off again. Immediately I felt dizzy and nauseated. Like I could upchuck sort of queasy. I started walking and just tried to breathe and not get too panicky.
Walking meant I felt the cold more and I soon lost sight of the other runners as they turned the corner and headed back to the start line. But for every discouraging thought that came up, I tried to knock it down with a little cheer and a deep breath. After all, I was out there and I was moving even if it was at a walk pace.
In my last post I shared my mega splurges this past weekend; "I really enjoyed my weekend and the fun new restaurants I got to try, but I don't need to let that derail my weight loss completely." In truth that statement was a pep talk for myself. Today I'd eaten 2 mega scoops of ice cream with lunch and a piece of chocolate later that afternoon. I have a feeling that may have lent to the not so steady yuck feeling I had mid run.
So for tonight I was walking more than I was running. But I decided I would enjoy my walk. I even captured a few pics to share.
Including pics of ATT Park. Opening week is in just a few weeks and that delights me so very much.
I feel like I'm starting over in some ways.
But I'm not giving up!
On Friday, my friend and I drove up to Ashland, OR. She's been at least half a dozen times, but this was my first time heading to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
We stayed at cozy place called the Stratford Inn. Super comfy beds, and I only had to stumble down the hall to a little coffee shop right on our floor to get the day started.
I set a goal to work out at least once over the weekend. It was so so cold I decided to use the gym through the Inn instead of running in the little park I'd hope to explore. For reals, I am going to get proper gear to run in the cold. Until then though, the treadmill felt amazing the morning after our 6 hour drive.
We saw three plays in total, each one more different than the next: Measure for Measure and To Kill a Mockingbird on Saturday; and on Sunday The Imaginary Invalid. Before, after and even between the plays we ate. Lemon poppyseed pancakes, blackberry and banana pancakes, coconut encrusted french toast, huge blueberry muffins, piping hot coffees, spicy breakfast quesadillas... oh the food this weekend was delicious.
I definitely don't splurge like that every weekend, and I was sure to do plenty of sharing of eats around the table.
Best of all... I tracked everything! That's right, every little bite.
And even though my extremely rich breakfast and dinner on Saturday put me over my calorie goal for the day, I balanced it with my treadmill time that morning and a lighter dinner the night before.
Splurging is a sometimes thing.
In the past when I had a weekend of splurging (or sometimes even a big meal), I would tend to let my goals slip by the wayside for the next meal and the next meal after that. I really enjoyed my weekend and the fun new restaurants I got to try, but I don't need to let that derail my weight loss completely.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
This may not seem that bizarre. But for me, it is further evidence of my entré into half-marathon training land.
I was at Coleen's house and she had the latest issue on her coffee table. This particular issue was "The Weight Loss issue" but I don't even think that was why I found it so fascinating. I actually started thumbing through it kind of casually, la de da look at how strong that woman looks. Ooh look at that pretty running trail. But soon I was actually completely engrossed. I read about 5 of the articles and found a bunch of tips that I want to try.
This picture is actually from the February issue and a great article on the Biggest Loser. I thought it was pretty interesting. As someone who is heavy and working my way to running a half marathon, I loved reading about the contestants journey. You can read the article here.
Yes, Runners World, yes! I am dragging the day after a long run! How did you know?
Look how strong she looks. I know it's probably her job to look that fierce in the plank position, and it's working.
You can find the article pictured above about weight loss at this link here. I thought it had some pretty good tips in it. And once again, another person recommending you keep a food log. I know... I know... I'm so resistant to it and yet it's actually helping me.
For some reason I totally got excited about the prospect of a Disney Wine and Dine Half-Marathon. Maybe it is the prospect of Lumiere from Beauty and the Beast running it with me?
I'm such a newbie runner, that I definitely didn't think the magazine would be for me. It actually felt funny to all of a sudden be drawn to this magazine that previously felt completely out of my realm of interest like Auto Mechanics Weekly. And to change my mind about a topic, kind of like the time I picked up my niece's copy of Highlights just to reminisce and realized I'd officially outgrown "Goofus and Gallant"; our tastes can change.
Any regular reads that get you inspired?
P.S. I know this post sounds like a giant commercial for Runner's World. Trust me, I'm not suggesting you run out and subscribe, but I'm all about sharing good tips when I find them. I checked out the website and they have a lot of goodies online you can download for free! Yay! Free is good!
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
I still wasn't up for our training groups Monday night run, especially since it was raining yesterday. But I am going to try to make it out to track tomorrow, even if I only do part of the workout. I've got to get back on track. haha. Get on track... at the track.... yeah, so....
Oh! And because of my beast of a cold I never shared with you my long Saturday run! This wasn't this Saturday that just passed, but the Saturday before. Each week we have a long run and so far 4 miles has been my limit. This time though, we were doing 6 miles! And the coach wanted me to run the whole way!!!! Yeah, I thought she was crazy too.
They split us up into pace groups. I was the second to the last (slowest) pace, just in front of the run/ walkers. We had a fabulous, kind and very patient pacer named Karen that stayed with us the whole time. We stopped to stretch at about 1 mile and then again at 2 miles.
Our second stretch break--a little over a third of the way to the first GG pylon
When we hit the tough hills up to the bridge Karen gave us some great advice, "If you are running up a hill and walkers are passing you, go ahead and walk. Don't run up a hill if you can walk up it faster." I walked up the hills. But the rest of the 6 miles.... I ran!!!! I would guess in total I was running for a tiny bit over 5 miles. I couldn't believe it. The coach was heckling me saying "And you couldn't even run 1 mile when we started." Well, that is true. "But not today!" I thought. I did it! I felt so enoromously proud of myself. And so incredibly sore.
That's right, my very first running date ever! Never in my life have I had plans with a friend to catch up as we... ran?! When Coleen and I ran at the track we were specifically getting ready for our training. Usually, if I'm going to catch up with a friend I suggest coffee or better yet, brunch!My friend Katie runs on trails with her pooch and so she invited me to join them on Sunday morning. I was nervous but really excited to join her. Alas, I was so bummed to miss out thanks to my cold, but we're going to reschedule. And I am still happy to share my Saturday mega run!
I also have to laugh that the next week (this past Saturday-- when I finally mustered up the strength to walk my 20 minutes); the training group was running 9 miles. Ha! Um... yeah... did I mention the 20 minutes kicked my butt?
I'm a bit apprehensive to dive back into the training program after a full week and a half lapse, but I'll just take it nice and easy and try to listen to my body.
Glad to be back!
P.S. Some of the runners who wanted to go out further ran all the way across the bridge. I overheard the coach saying that eventually we'd run all the way across the bridge too. I love that I'd ventured across the bridge on my own! Sure, I started at the base of the bridge and not 2.5 miles away from it, but I still loved it.
Friday, March 11, 2011
Love this quote from Debbie's post:
Congratulations ladies, you are all winners in my book. It takes courage, persistence, hard work and a healthy dose of self confidence to put your story out there for all to see.Thanks Debbie! I appreciate the shout out!
P.S. Part of the award includes sharing some of your favorite bloggers and 7 random facts about yourself. I received my very first blogger award in January and you can read all about the rockstar bloggers I featured (plus a few very random facts about me) at this link here.
P.P.S. I am feeling a leaps and bounds better today! Not enough to actually leap anywhere, but I still feel a little less under the weather!
P.P.P.S. I'm sure so many of you, like I did, woke up to the news of the devastating earthquake in Japan and the damage across the globe from the tsunamis. Sending so many prayers and thoughts of hope to all affected. I hope you are safe out there.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
My roomie offered season 1 of Modern Family. And since I've only seen an episode or two I am going to give it a try. Any Modern Family fans out there?
Once when I was doing some major tlc'ing I watched all 3 seasons of Veronica Mars. I love that show! It is amazing and witty.
I watch the Biggest Loser every week and last night, right as the black team was about to weigh in I fell asleep. I had muted it because a commercial was on but that lull was just enough for me to knock out. I woke up 9 hours later with Regis and Kelly staring at me. Who was voted off?
Yup, that's right, a post about tv. Sorry folks, that's about as exciting as it gets over here until I knock out this cold. My track workouts are starting to sound pretty good right about now!
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
So when my friend shared this video with me, I wasn't expecting it to bring me such a fit of giggles. Oh was I wrong. It was a little ray of fun sunshine through my cold laden clouds.
I'm heading back to bed for nap #3.
Monday, March 7, 2011
For as long as I can remember, I've had a "sick list". A bunch of go to items, that if I can drag myself out of bed and to the store, I automatically grab.
Turns out, though many of them do serve as comfort foods when I'm sick, they actually aren't helping me get well. So I'm trying to rethink this list and lean it towards the healthier side.
Before you read the list and grimace, know that I'm trying to make some better choices, but figured I'd tell it like it is. Without further ado, B's go to sick list.
Hot Tamales candy
Yup, that's right, when all other food fails to wake up your dulled taste buds, leave it to the artificial spiciness of Hot Tamales candy to kick it up a notch. I'm like Pavlov's drooling dog when I see a box of Hot Tamales. I love them and for some reason crave them like crazy when I have a cold. But I know sugar is just feeding the cold monster so I'm trying not to even bring them into the house.
Frosted Mini Wheats
Just enough sweetness and crunch to satisfy. Plus when your throat is scratchy it feels really good to eat this cereal. (Is that gross?)
Nonfat milk (despite the rule about avoiding dairy while you're sick, this is on the list)
Orange Juice (the extra pulpy kind-- which I hated as a child, but now love)
Lemons (to go in my water)
Really Yummy chicken noodle soup (the kind with thick noodles and lots of veggies)
Wheat Thins (to go with the Chicken noodle soop)
My magic Vernors ginger ale (we always had this in the fridge when I was growing up and it was way too strong for me, but now love!)
Kleenex tissues (the really soft kind, but not the lotion kind)
Hall's cough drops (the honey lemon kind)
They aren't all bad, right? But I know it's better to stay away from sugar and dairy while you're battling a cold. And today I managed to get to the store and guess what tried to jump on the list? Waffles! Waffles! and more waffles. It's all I could think about. All I wanted. I almost convinced myself that Eggo somehow found the cure for the common cold and if I didn't get them and eat the whole box I wouldn't experience the cure. Yeah, it's the fever talking.
But after pressing my nose against the glass, and then disinfecting the glass, I walked away from the waffles calling my name and headed back to produce.
Here's the haul I walked away with.
Some cheese still snuck its way in there but I'll avoid it the next day or two.
What about you? Any go to's when you are sick?
hot tamales image found here
Frosted mini wheats image found here
Vernor's image found here
Friday, March 4, 2011
At our third team workout we did a timed mile. I was confident I could finish, and just as sure that I would not be able to run the whole thing. Still I was excited to announce my first mile time in this post here.
2/2/11 Timed mile/ Track run 15:42
I was actually looking forward to this weeks track workout because we were doing our second timed mile. And I was excited to see if I'd made progress. I know I've made progress, but I was excited to be able make a real tangible comparison of the timed mile progress.
My first area of progress was endurance. I was able to run the whole mile without stopping! Although I'd done a mile and a half during training, it still amazes me when I'm able to keep going. That thrill has definitely not worn off.
And the second area of progress was my time.
3/2/11 Timed mile/ Track run 13:21
Over 2 minutes faster!!!
And since I am not focused on speedwork, it was a fun bonus to see so much improvement. Especially since going in I had set a goal of going just :30 seconds faster.
(One person that night improved by 4 minutes!!!)
So this is what consistency can do... hmmmm I like it.
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Here is a "schedule" of my posts that I'll be starting next week.
Food and feelings file- Not exactly sure when this will come up, but I put it on Tuesday because usually when I'm still in yoga it gives me a chance to really feel what emotions are coming up. My eating is totally linked to my feelings so I'm trying to be a detective to find out how to find the pause button for the emotional eating.
Link Love, Book reviews, blogs I read- I'll share books I love, links that inspire or blogs that I hope you'll check out. These are not sites/books/blogs that are compensating me in anyway, so I'll just share my love as it comes.
What do you think? Are you into structure or do you dig the more "post as it comes" sort of style? I'd love to hear your opinion!
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
I began this blog and this public journey!
I also pondered whether ballet and Bethany are mutually exclusive. And took a ballet class for the first time in 8 years!
I continued with my push-up adventure. (This has been put on hold since I hurt my shoulder so badly this summer, but it's not forgotten!)
I took my yoga adventures on the road! With Yoga in NYC !
I got inspired
Want to know what's in store for us in 2010? I'm predicting a sudden, burning need for exercise. A need so powerful, we won't be able to ignore it. The excuses of the past (e.g. "I'm too tired." "I don't have enough time." "This is so boring.") will no longer exist and our sidewalks will be so full of exercisers that we will spill into the streets, stopping traffic with our sweaty selves and shouting "Get out of my way! I'm exercising!"
--Paige Waehner, yahoo about exercise blogger
I got distracted. Only one little post.... and a lot of weight gained....
I got really really distracted. No posts! More weight gain. This was the month I hurt my shoulder and stopped doing yoga all together. I also lost my job. And sad but true... my motivation for the "gettinghot" adventure. But who knew that exercise and writing was just the thing I needed to get recentered and start regaining a sense of self...(well Autumn and most of my good friends knew) but it took a while before I knew!
I was reinspired by my very grown up vacation to NYC and Oprah's Live your Best life conference.
(**directors note, turn down the volume a bit, I was right by the microphone =)
I started to rev it up by creating my own little home gym!
I recharged with some of my favorite people
I started moving more and clearing space
I started being kinder to myself and finding more joy in this journey.
Oh! And Coleen and I signed up for a half-marathon! And I redefined my goals so that they felt SMARTer.
I actively worked on defunking the funk and being Joy-filled!
And here we are now in March 2011!
Truthfully, if you had asked me last March to predict where I'd be today, I would surely have said something like "I'll be at my goal weight. My house will be perfectly organized. And I'll be doing work I absolutely love". I could not have seen the twists and turns of this last year. And if I had, I probably would have been sorely disappointed at the seeming lack of progress in those areas. But... since I actually am in today, I can tell you that I feel so much more proud of myself than I did last year. I feel more grounded and more grateful. I feel stronger and more aware of where I should turn when I don't feel that way. But most of all, today I feel really excited about this journey. I have no doubt it will look differently than I could imagine, but I trust that I'll be able to stick with it. And I'll be sure to share it along the way.
In the meantime, thanks for reading along this last year. If you're still reading (long post, I know, but blogiversary happens but once a year) please drop a hello in the comment section. I'll be happy you did!
P.S. Blogiversary Part III still to come!