Friday, June 29, 2012

Freaky Friday

This morning I went to work early. It's been a stressful week. I've had a lot of meetings all over our campus and I've been organizing a celebration project for a milestone in our department all which had to be done this morning along with my regular workload. I started out Monday with a migraine, and it continued Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I've spent several nights too stressed to fall asleep, or tossing and turning because of the stress. So today when I finished my morning meeting I sat at my desk and started to panic a little because my left hand was tingly. And then my neck felt tight. So I picked up all my stuff (including my husband, the benefit of working for the same company) and rushed myself to the doctor so she could run an EKG on me and see what was wrong. Guess what she found? Nothing. Not a thing. Perfect blood pressure(116/70), perfect EKG, perfect everything...I had managed to stress myself out to the point of an anxiety attack and I thought I was having a freaking cardiac event. I felt a little stupid for the literal panic I was in, but I would rather be safe than sorry. I'm fine, my anxiety attack is abating. I've only had a small handful of them over the course of my whole life, but as someone with ADHD I am somewhat more vulnerable to them than the average person. Still feeling a little silly though.

After today, I am painfully aware of my need to get some rest. I am looking forward to a restful weekend. It's weird, The Biggest Loser is doing an open casting call for season 14 here in Phoenix. I've gone to the last several casting calls and sent in multiple videos, and have never received a single call back. I don't think I'm going to go, even though I would love to be on the show especially since Bob Harper has totally become a Crossfitter himself! But I like the path I'm on. It's my own journey with the CrossFit Chaparral family and you all as my accountability, and God as my strength. I'm going to workout in the morning and go on with life.


No WOD today. I had to be at work too early, and after an anxiety attack, my body is exhausted and completely spent.


Breakfast: Huevos rancheros, no tortilla, yes bacon, coffee with H&H and Splenda.

Lunch: 5oz chicken breast, 1 cup frozen veggies

Dinner: Steak, broccoli, mashed potatoes, and a slice of garlic toast out. As well as a slice of cake today. It was a splurge afternoon.

Like I said a few days ago, I am looking back over my last month's worth of meals and looking to tighten things up and make greater headway on the weightloss portion of this experiment. I am so excited about the progress and changes I've implemented in our family life. Life is good, and even though circumstances and emotions may ebb and flow, I refuse to be discouraged.



Thursday, June 28, 2012

Thank You!

First I want to thank everyone who has reached out to me about yesterday's post. I was getting emails and text messages late into the night about how it resonated with so many people. (Late is relative, it was 9:30pm when I checked the last message as I was crawling into bed. Don't judge me.) It seems to have struck a chord of personal experience, or made a connection with a lot of people. I'll be honest, it's hard to put this stuff out there. These are the real deal when it comes to my fears and insecurities about body image, weight, and the struggle of it all. What I am overjoyed about is that so many of you have been moved to do something about your current condition. Whether you are at a healthy weight and are just making better choices for yourself, or you are starting from a point of illness and excess weight, we are here together. Secondly I want to thank all of you have affirmed me and gifted me words of love and kindness. You help bring healing to places of my heart that remain broken. Thank you for speaking truth to me. Lastly, to my unbelievable husband Rob. You amaze me every single day. Thank you for your love, encouragement, and belief in me when I just don't see it. I adore you.

I am grateful for the challenges that I have faced in my life. I don't wish them on anyone, but I see how God has used these experiences to shape my character and make me the person I am today. From humiliation I have learned to extend grace and kindness. From hurt I have learned to choose joy. From hard times I have learned that they will not break me and I am far stronger than I ever imagined. I have learned to make the choice to tenaciously love people who are hard to love. Not because it's easy, but because they need it. And it's not always the easiest or prettiest moment ever...there are more naughty words muttered through gritted teeth than I can count. But the end result after all these years is one that I am grateful for.


Rest day! Oh thank heavens! My body is so sore, and my knees are slightly angry...still.


Breakfast: BAT breakfast, mostly because it was already to go. Coffee and H&H and Splenda

Lunch: Ham, avocado, and tomato...again because it was easy to do.

Dinner: Hamburger patty with onions, jalapenos, and cheese and a side salad. I also tried some of the artichoke dip.

This chapter of life is still a little scary, but more exciting than anything else. I am anticipating awesome, amazing and wonderful things, for all of us. I don't have an idea of what course that will be or what shape it will take, but I am excited about it all. Thank you again, I am absolutely grateful for you.



Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Burden of Weight

I've been working on my health, weightloss, and fitness in one way or another for the better part of my adult life. There have been moments where I've given up and done nothing for the sheer exasperation of the task at hand. I call it fighting the good fight for a reason. It's a battle every single day. It's mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual. I've realized that I cannot expect to make lasting change without binding all four of those aspects together. For those of you who have never struggled to lose a substantial amount of weight, (50 or more lbs) allow me to paint you a picture.

A few years ago I still belonged to a globo gym. It was the only kind of gym I knew and I was still putting in hours every week working on losing weight and getting fit. I had gotten into the habit of going to the gym after work, getting an hour and half workout in before I went home. I was in a nice little routine when I noticed this group of guys making fun of me. Young twenty-somethings, openly mocking me as I labored through my workout. I complained to gym management, but they did nothing. So these guys continued, laughing, pointing, mocking every day for weeks. I could only take so much, and one day I finally just gave, and left in tears. I changed my workout times to the mornings, but I had grown so discouraged it lasted only a few more weeks before I just stopped going altogether.

In 2008 I bought a beautiful bicycle. Her name is Lulu. She's pretty and purple and I love her. I bought my bike and rode to work every day until the weather got too hot. Once it cooled off again in the fall I rode my bike again. I kept this up for about a year because my car was dying and I really wanted to minimize how much I drove it. During my bike commute to work I experienced people openly swerving to mimic that they were trying to hit me, people rolling their windows down to yell insults, and at one point someone threw food at me. Betcha that wouldn't have happened to a thin woman.

I've had doctors mistreat me and call me a liar. I've been mocked, bullied, yelled at, and passed by as if I'm invisible. I even had a roommate in college refuse to shake my hand or eat anything I cooked (even though I was on WeighWatchers at the time) because she thought fat was contagious. I've had people tell me I'd never get married or that it's a shame that I have such a pretty face. It's interesting. The human condition is such that we are in constant comparison and competition. We seek to rank ourselves against others and judge our worth. Who does what best, or where you rank in your class, or how much you make, or how good you look are different types of barometers that we use to see how we stack up to the competition. And discriminating against those who fall short of a given standard isn't new to humanity. Be it class, race, gender, or weight it's still discrimination. The thing that non-heavy people don't understand about the overweight is that we are keenly aware of our shortfalls. It would be extremely rare to come across an overweight person who isn't aware that they are, indeed, overweight. Pointed and/or passive aggressive remarks are not required. The burden is ever present and so much more complex than what you could imagine. And it's painful. Even if we do our best not to show it.


Today's warm up was like a WOD all by its onsie.
10 reps of each for time: burpees, box jumps, sit ups, push ups, pull ups, toes to bar, dips, wall balls, walking lunges... I didn't list them in the order we did them, but I finished in 7:49

And then on to the AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) for 10 minnutes

5 Squat Snatch @ 45#
21 box jumps

finished 3 full rounds plus 6 reps.

Went to CrossFit this morning with the beginning of a migraine, this may have not been the best idea I've ever had. I also suspect it's a cluster migraine because this is day three of this blinking headache. Makes me want to crawl into a dark freezer and stay there.


Breakfast: the last of the baked egg cups, salsa, and bacon. PS: couldn't eat the egg cups. So bacon and coffee for breakfast.

Snack: Protein shake

Lunch: Turkey breast, avocado, and tomato. I offered to call it the AT&T lunch and Rob just rolled his eyes. TAT is more appropriate anyway. Mineral water.

Dinner: Salmon, with steamed broccoli, maybe some other veggies

I have shared these experiences with only a few people in my life, and now I am putting them out there for everyone to read. The goal would be for people who have never had this struggle to understand a little more and maybe have a bit more compassion for the people in your life who do. Perhaps, maybe even extend grace to the people you don't know and pass on the fat jokes from now on. I needed to get this off my chest so I can work on forgiving and moving on. I don't want to carry the weight of this hurt anymore. It's just too heavy.

Thanks for reading and your support.



Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Month To Date

I'm coming up on a month of My Next 100 and I am wondering a little about my progress so far. I've been kind of thinking about a few things that I want to work on. Here are just a few thoughts.

I've been thinking about my nutrition a bit. The foods I am eating are quality, and I am purposefully keeping carbs on the moderately low side, but I think I need to dial in the portion sizes a bit more. By that, I mean make them smaller. And maybe reduce the bacon intake. (sigh) I am feeling different, my clothes fit better, and I am starting to look a little different. (A very little) However, I don't feel like I am making the best use of the caloric needs information that I got when I did the hydrostatic body composition analysis. I want this project to be a smashing success. Also, I want smaller jeans.

Yoga. I want to love yoga, but I'm kind of horrible at it. It also hurts to do yoga on my tile floors even with a mat. I'm going to try to find a much thicker mat and see if that helps. I may also look for some other DVDs that work on flexibility and building a foundation for a yoga practice. The Biggest Loser Weight Loss Yoga DVD is a lot of poses which put too much strain on my knees. But it's supposed to help with calories burned and I suppose if you don't have knee problems, then maybe it's a better fit. Not giving up on yoga, maybe just not loving this DVD as much as I wished I did. I've gone to yoga classes before, and I lament that I can't do a membership because of the help an instructor can provide.

Cooking thoughts:

I bulk cooked eggs for breakfast and made little egg cups with chopped bell peppers and onions in them. Then I put them in freezer bags and popped them in the freezer. The texture of eggs that have been scrambled, baked, frozen, and then defrosted in the microwave is not my favorite. Not gonna lie, probably won't do that ever again. Fail. Fail. Fail. Maybe a quiche like recipe without the crust would be better, but this was not a good call. Not going to waste them, there are only a few more servings that Rob and I have to suffer through before we can go back to fresh egg deliciousness. 

I can't seem to buy enough veggies. I am perpetually running out of them. I may need to go back to buying frozen on some varieties so I can have them on hand. It's a lot more convenient and I don't want to burn out on our veggie choices. I'm going to try making zucchini chips this week. I saw it on pinterest, don't know if it's gonna work.

Oh, and the crockpot chicken with the dry rub and white wine? It worked well. The wine had been opened for more than a week so I didn't want to drink it, but it went well with the chicken. I shredded it and added some gluten free BBQ sauce. The broth thinned out the sauce so it wasn't too heavy and hardly sweet. It was delish!

Lastly, sweet treat idea. This is not Paleo, but I think it's a nice alternative for when you need a sweet treat. Take some gluten free graham crackers, spread a thin layer of cream cheese and top with sliced strawberries. It gives you the flavors of cheesecake, but in a moderate and still enjoyable way. And it's a nice way to use some summer fruit.


Swim night! I wish our condo association allowed for quiet early morning swimming, however they do not. So I am going to hop in the pool as soon as I get home and get some swimming in before dinner. It will also make me super hungry for dinner too.


Breakfast: Bacon, avocado, tomato with lemon. Coffee with H&H and Splenda.

Lunch: BBQ Chicken with half a small yam, mineral water

Snack: Protein Shake

Dinner: Fresh Cod cooked in olive oil with rosemary, garlic and lemon, caprese salad.

Stress and Cravings:

Work has been extremely busy and stressful and out of the ordinary for me. I am grateful for my job, it's just been a tough couple of weeks, and it looks like it's going to continue. The first thing I do when I stress out is cheat myself on sleep. I can feel it and it's only been a few nights that I haven't been sleeping well or enough. Must continue to make that a priority.

Soda isn't calling my name anymore. It took about three weeks before I was really free from its addiction. I find that the mineral water has been the key in breaking my habit because I do love the fizz. Now I like the fizz with a twist of lemon or lime and nothing else. Much better for me.

Overall, I am super happy with my progress. I have decided to make lasting life change, and this month so far has been a lot of getting settled into these new changes and allowing them to become a part of my routine.  I think month two I want to focus more on nutrition that will encourage fat loss. Also I want to focus on the workouts I do by myself. I don't push myself as hard as when I walk into the CF Box, something I've noticed these last few times I've worked out at home so tonight I'm going to swim my little heart out.

How have your last 26 days been? Let me know about the progress you are making on your goals, I'm cheering you on as well! We can do this together!!!



Monday, June 25, 2012

You Are Better Than You Think

Friday morning I was talking to a friend of mine and he was telling my a story about someone he worked for a few decades ago when he first began his career. His manager made it a habit of looking people in the eye and telling them, "You are better than you think." Now this may come off as a little weird, but the way that it was said when I heard this story was absolutely beautiful. This man made a conscious effort to affirm everyone around him. He knew that people heap abuse upon themselves, and he wanted them to stop that for a moment, and be encouraged. These are powerful, beautiful, life-giving words he spoke on a daily basis. His hope was that eventually people would start to believe him.

There is a disconnect between my heart and my brain. There always has been. There is a part of my brain that acknowledges that I am hard on myself and I beat myself up far more than I should, but my heart fails to get the message. If you are reading this, I know you do this too. It seems to be part of the human experience. A crappy part, I should add. Just stop for a moment and take inventory of your thoughts. Whether you are working on a project, or dinner, or laundry (my perpetual ongoing project), take an inventory of your thoughts. How many times do you believe that you are less than you truly are? Perhaps this is a touch easier for me because I tend to have a constant stream of chatter going on within myself. I also talk to myself to process my thoughts out loud when I need to organize an idea. I don't know how other people think and process thoughts, but this may be common to lots of people. Those things you mutter to yourself under your breath that no one else hears? You are generally speaking them to yourself. What are you saying? Perhaps you should try a few of these on for size.

You are better than you think.

You are stronger than you ever imagined.

You are beautiful.

You have been fearfully and wonderfully made, and there is no one on the planet like you.

You are amazing.


Woke up super late since I had terrible sleep last night. Missed my CF class, but I got up and did an at home mini-wod.

5 rounds
10 air squats
10 hand release push ups
10 sit ups. (for the lack of an abmat, a folded up towel in the small of your back helps you get a more full extension and engaged core)

Finished in 12:12. Not as intense as I would have liked, but my dog kept trying to sit in my lap when I was doing situps, and he wanted to snuggle by my face when I was doing pushups. He could not, however, figure out what I was doing with the air squats.


Breakfast: 3 eggs with salsa, coffee with H&H and Splenda.

Lunch: Bacon, avocado, and tomato and a mineral water. Not just for breakfast anymore!

Dinner: Chicken in the crock pot, this is kind of an experiment, and I genuinely have no idea how it's going to turn out. I threw a bunch of chicken in the crock pot with some dry rub and some white wine. We'll see how it turns out.

It is unbelievable to consider the power of our words and thoughts-- they become our actions. If we think and speak the best of ourselves, then your only choice is to become the best possible version of you. Now go speak some truth to yourself and others, and proclaim it boldly. Leave it in the comments so we can encourage each other!



Sunday, June 24, 2012

Strong and Courageous.

Hello all!

Sorry about the long lapse of posts. The last half of this week was insanely busy at work and it left me completely unable to write once I got home. The mental energy involved in training people this week was more than I expected.

I won't try to summarize everything that has gone on, I'll just give you some highlights. When I was first planning out my time frames for my workouts and how many rest days I would need per week, I neglected to account for those days when I am naturally in a lot of pain and would prefer to remain in a fetal curl if at all possible. Nothing that kills any woman, it just feels like it's trying to kill you is all. So Thursday night I did my yoga, despite my body screaming at me not to, and come Friday I could not get out of bed. I ate breakfast and took three Aleve and then went to work. So I missed a workout on Friday and Saturday. I am going to try to do some yoga tonight. I found a YouTube video of some stretches for your hips and IT Bands which help alleviate knee pain and tightness. I'm going to try to go through them, even though they do look super challenging. Nutritional highlights, we had some thin crust pizza on Thursday night. As it turns out, the smell of pizza is delish to me still, but I don't really like it anymore. As I am finding with most junk food that I used to love, it doesn't settle well and I don't want to eat it even though it still smells good. The taste is no longer appealing to me either. The take away here is that my palate is changing and I don't want that food as much!!! This is a good memory to keep in my mind for the next time that I have some sort of craving. I did have some chocolate on Friday, shocker. It is still delicious. I don't want to live in a world where chocolate is no longer delicious to me.

So in the midst of being super stressed and busy this week, one thing kept coming back to me. It is frightening to put myself out here this way. It's so very public. There is nothing to hide behind. And unlike someone who may have a struggle that is easily concealed, being overweight is anything but easily concealed. It is terrifying to consider failure, but I am also trying to forge into unknown territory for me. In my adult life, I have never not been plus-sized. The last few days were hard because I was stressed and I was tempted to eat my way through it. But I wasn't tempted to quit because I kept meditating on this passage of scripture:

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

Now I know this instruction was given to Joshua, but it speaks to me every day that I choose to fight the good fight. Not only am I commanded to be strong and courageous, I am commanded to not be terrified or discouraged. Kind of perfect if I let it sink in .It's not that fear won't present itself to you. It's that when it knocks, you don't invite fear in and let it make itself at home The beauty of it is that I don't have to worry about summoning the courage and strength within myself, my supply of both is finite and fleeting. I am strong and courageous because God is with me wherever I go. And that is beautiful, and comforting, and far too magnificent for my words to describe.


Yoga, from YouTube, we'll see if I can go through these movements. If not I'll go back to the BL Weightloss Yoga video with Bob Harper.


Breakfast: Bacon, avocado, and tomato with half a lime. Coffee and H&H with Splenda.

Lunch: Salmon, steamed cauliflower. The steamed cauliflower is way more bland than I imagined. Needs other flavors. 

Dinner: Chicken in tomato sauce with fresh basil and rosemary.

Do not be terrified and do not be discouraged. Thanks for being here with me.



Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Leaving old habits behind is kind of like a breakup. I'm not talking a polite "let's still be friends," type of breakup. It's not a Ross and Rachel, "We were on a break." More along the lines of Sid and Nancy, where someone ends up dead. And then the other person ends up OD'd on heroine... or donuts. Jenna Marbles, of YouTube fame, says in her video, How Diets Work, "Lady Gaga's 'Bad Romance,' isn't about a break up! It's about my relationship with food!" (She is quite possibly one of the funniest people on the planet, very curse word heavy. Consider yourself warned.) I couldn't agree more.

The thing about changing your way of eating is that you can't get away from having to eat, and the bad romance is everywhere you go! Just hop in your car and go to work and on your way you are passing by countless terrible options. (There is a stinking Culver's opening less than a mile from our front door. I've told Rob we're moving.) Once I get to work, this is where the heavy artillery comes in. We have potlucks, fundraiser bake sales, bagels and donuts and muffins--Oh my! The truth is, it still hurts to pass it by. I still want it. I cannot begin to describe how much that annoys me. Even so, it's important to allow the time for changes to take place. You have to walk before you learn to run. The same is true with life change. It's a process that takes time. So instead of focusing on the Sid and Nancy aspect of weight loss, today I am focusing on the positive.

I want it less than I used to want it before. June first I sat at my desk that Friday afternoon and almost cried because I wanted a soda and candy so bad. I wish I was joking about this. It was super pathetisad and I may have whined for several minutes before I just drank some more water. I'm not even really a candy eater, but it was the thought that I couldn't have it that made me want it. My palate is starting to change. I am surprised at what I am finding satisfying as a meal. You know sugar,  potato, and bread free foods put together still make a meal. Weird. This morning I was surprised at how sweet the fresh tomatoes tasted. It was absolutely lovely and delicious. Making myself hungry for dinner.


MetCon (CF term for Metabolic Conditioning, which is largely a cardiovascular effort.)

2 Minutes max reps sit ups
2 Minutes max calorie burn rowing
2 Minutes max rep box step ups
1 Minute rest
Repeat. Total all reps+calories for score. My score today was 137.


Breakfast: Variation on my BAT, 3 slices of ham, 2 Roma tomatoes, and 1 avocado with a splash of lime juice. Coffee with H&H and Splenda.

Lunch: 1 Spicy chicken sausage with peppers and onions in a tomato sauce.

Snack: 1 low carb ice cream bar.

Dinner: Gluten free BBQ beef and creamed spinach.

I wish that this process took about as long as it takes to microwave a bag of popcorn. It doesn't. It takes ever so slightly longer. However, I'm in it for the long haul. Thanks for being here with me. Any suggestions on how to continue the breakup are greatly appreciated. No one wants to go crawling back to their evil ex.



Tuesday, June 19, 2012

My Not So Subtle Avocado Obsession

I've always been slightly obsessed with avocados. In college, I had avocado posters in my kitchen. I grew up eating them in California, and I've loved them since. At one point, our neighbors had several avocado trees on their property and we basically had a free unlimited supply. I miss those days. Now I have to pay for avocados and it is only slightly annoying when they are about a buck a piece. Still, I find myself willing to fork over the cash because these green little monsters are neatly packed with nutrients, healthy fats, and delicious flavor. And to think in the 80's this was considered a nutritionally meh fat bomb.

Before I forget, if you have a Sprouts grocery store near you, UPDATED: just got their flyer. Starting this Wednesday, avocados are TWO FOR A BUCK!!! I'm going back on Wednesday and buying as many as I think will fit in my fridge! I just bought eight yesterday. This is true avocado love. But what do you do with all these avocados purchased in one week? Fantastic question!

Avocados are extremely versitle even though they are easily squishable. You can freeze mashed avocados for up to a month. I have never frozen them longer than that because they just don't wait too long to be eaten in my house. Before you freeze them you must prepare them.

Freezing avocados:
Peel and remove pit from 4-5 avocados.
Add the juice of 2-3 limes, run in food processor until smooth and place in a freezer bag. Squeeze all the air out and seal well. You can make this into guac after defrosting by adding onion, garlic, fresh cilantro and diced fresh tomatoes later. 

Fresh ideas other than guac? Absolutely! One of my favorite breakfasts right now is bacon, avocado, and tomato with a twist of fresh lime juice on the avocado, aka The BAT Breakfast. Or you can add it to a fresh chopped salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, jicama, and cooked shrimp. Add some garlic salt, dress with cilantro and you have an entree salad, or a nice appetizer salad for a party. You can even grill them to give them a smokey flavor. Just make sure you slice them pretty thick (2-3 slices per half) and that the flames on your grill aren't high. How about a light dressing made from one avocado, white wine vinegar, olive oil and some fresh herbs? Throw it all into a blender and enjoy over some summer greens. Throw some sliced avocado into your next caprese salad! You can even replace butter in cookie recipes with mashed avocados! Try searching avocado recipes on Pinterest, and you will be blown away.


Yoga with Bob Harper. I did a 30 minute workout. It was tough still.


Breakfast: 3 egg cups and bacon, coffee with H&H and Splenda.

Lunch: Spinach salad, with turkey and organic Chipotle Ranch. Mineral Water with Twist of lime.

Snack: Premier Nutrition Protein Shake.

Dinner: Grilled chicken with chimmichurri, leftover caprese, broccoli, and maybe split a yam with Rob.

One last parting tip when using avocados, to prevent them from turning brown, don't leave them exposed to air that much. When storing your guacamole, place in a conainer, place plastic wrap on the surface of the guacamole making sure to leave no bubbles or airpockets. Then seal with the container's lid. My guac never turns brown this way. If you have any ideas or recipes, or you just want to share your love for avocado, let me know in the comments!



Monday, June 18, 2012

Lessons I'm Learning

It's been difficult to focus on any one thing today because I've been mulling over some lessons that I've been learning.

Lesson Number One: (For me, may not work for everyone else) Workout first thing in the morning. I saw a pin on Pinterest that said, "Workout first thing in the morning before your body knows what's going on." I get up for CrossFit at 5ish and out the door at 5:45am. It's proven to be true for me in these last two weeks, if I put off a workout for later in the day, I will be tired and far less likely to complete it. That was exactly the case yesterday and now I will have a Thursday workout instead of a Thursday rest day.

Lesson Number Two: Avoid the Food and Drink pages on Pinterest. They will only make me hungry for cake, cake, and more cake. With a side of cupcake.

Lesson Number Three: Mute the commercials. The constant bombardment of commercials telling of glorious new food items that are on XYZ Menu are not my friends. If I mute then I am far less likely to get an idea in my head that I will have to uproot later.

Lesson Number Four: Nothing compares to making a meal myself. I know what I put into it, and the nutritional quality of the ingredients.


4 Rounds for time. Each round consists of:

100 meter rowing sprint (on a rowing machine)
20 Overhead Squats @ 35#
15 Wall Balls 9-10# medicine ball. The movement starts with a squat, power up out of the squat with the medicine ball, jump while throwing the ball at a target 10-12 feet off the ground. Catch the medicine ball. That is one rep.
10 Push ups.
2 minute rest in between rounds. My finish time was 25:05 minus 6 for breaks is 19:05.


Breakfast: 3 egg cups and bacon. I used muffin tins to bake a whole mess of egg cups, which are basically scrambled eggs with diced onion and bell peppers. Coffee with H&H and Splenda.

Lunch: Provided by work, insides of a chicken sandwich, chips, and peanuts. Water to drink.

Snack, protein shake, more peanuts.

Dinner: Salmon burgers, caprese salad.

It's been a good day although I may need to crawl to bed early, I'm tired. Could be the heat though, it's supposed to be in the 110*+ this week. It's ok, it just means our summer storms are coming. In the meantime, I hope you are all well.



Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Sweet Taste of Success, An Appetizer

Happy Father's Day! To all the dads out there, hope this day is a reminder of how special you are to your kids. I get to spend the afternoon with my family and my husband showering my dad with love and gifts. And to my amazing father-in-law, from far away we love and adore you tremendously! You are amazing!

Things are starting to change a little. Today I wore a pair of shorts that two weeks ago did not fit well. They would zip, but I could only stay in them as long as I was willing to sacrifice breathing. I wore them all day today. I approached them with that sense of curiosity, hope, and dread all swirling about in the pit of my stomach. Today forfeiting my ability to breathe was not required!!! So I wore them all day and it made it a whole lot easier to make good decisions when we had planned to eat Pei Wei. I thought I noticed a difference when I got dressed yesterday, but the shorts confirmed it for me. Only two weeks in, I expect to have some progress, although I don't have a number on a scale to give me the verification. I had said in my first post that I would only weigh myself once a month because I tend to obsess over the number. If it doesn't come off as fast as I'd like, it gets a little frustrating. But today's success was just what my spirits needed after feeling bombarded by cravings yesterday.

Didn't get anything in other than two walks with the dogs. One with Bloo and one with my niece puppy Roxy. Going to have to make it all week including Thursday to catch up.


Breakfast: Paleo coconut pancakes and bacon. Coffee with h&h and Splenda.

Lunch: PeiWei Gluten Free Spicy Chicken Salad, egg roll. Water. Fortune cookie.

Dinner: One Spicy Italian chicken sausage with peppers, onions, and sauce. I had made two, but only ate half and saved the other half for lunch sometime this week.

Savoring a small sense of accomplishment is more difficult than I care to admit. But it's refreshing to not have a nagging sense of fear or doubt. Suddenly October doesn't feel so far away, or so difficult. And I can't wait to see the trophies along the way. I feel like I have a little bit of confirmation that this wasn't the most absurd idea I've decided to follow through in such a public manner. And it's stirring my appetite for success. It's a success appetizer. Question for you all, how have you measured success in your goals? How have you rewarded yourself for goals reached? Leave me your non-food suggestions in the comments.

As always, thanks for reading. I appreciate your support tremendously!



Saturday, June 16, 2012


Happy Saturday Everyone!

I've had a fantastically productive Saturday. And an enjoyable one as well. Rob and I had our weekly breakfast date this morning. We've been loving The Oink Cafe on Cactus and Paradise Village Parkway over by the Paradise Valley Mall, but since we went to get his car serviced, we ended up at Luci's Healthy Marketplace on Bethany Home and 16th Street in Phoenix. Amazing stuff. We've only been there twice, but I can't wait to go back! Lovely food, great atmosphere, and gluten free options abound.

I've been wanting something sweet today. I don't have anything in the house that would come remotely close other than fruit, and I don't care for fruit so that's out. But it made me realize that we haven't talked about temptations and cravings. I've been trying to focus on food that is nutritionally sound and helpful to me with Celiac's disease, and the default for me has been to not have tempting foods in the house and I do my best to avoid those restaurants or dishes that I have a history of lack of control. For example, I wanted a soda today because I heard my husband open the bottle of Sprite. Well next thing I know, I want a Coke Zero so bad, it hurts. I grabbed one of my mineral waters, added a lot of ice and drinking the fizzy water really scratched my soda itch. If there had been a Coke Zero readily available, it might have been a different story. Temptation is all around, it's always lurking around the corner and you may not always be able to tell when it's stalking you until it pounces on you like its helpless prey.

There are a couple of issues that I think shroud food cravings and temptation in mystery. First of all, virtuous and non-virtuous foods. Bad foods, good foods. Your lunch was never meant to be an epic battle between good and evil. Food was meant to be energy and delicious not a minefield of emotional torment. Torment it has become for me and so many others because of the virtue we assign to food. Eat a "bad food" and you reinforce that you are a "bad person." This echoes a lot of what I wrote in the "I'm So Bad," post. I wouldn't echo it if weren't so true. The second issue that I see with cravings and temptation is the "All or Nothing." The all or nothing takes place when someone gives in and indulges a craving. Let's say for example, a sweet treat. I don't need to put a name on it because I don't want to get an idea lodged in my head. So I indulge in my sweet treat, which I had not planned and then realize, "Geez Kendra, you really blew it today! For goodness sakes, your whole day of healthy eating is ruined! May as well go get more." Now the thought process may not be as silly or include a "geez" but I can't tell you how many times I have been completely undone by this type of thinking! What's worse are the times that I throw out an entire day, week, or more of great choices because I was in an "All or Nothing," frame of mind. For those of you fighting this particular fight with me, I know you've been there too.


Rest day. I was getting ready to go swimming and realized that a dust storm was pushing through town. Going to get up early for some yoga here in the house tomorrow morning.


Breakfast: Omelette with  lump crab meat, smoked salmon, asparagus, onions, and swiss cheese. With a side of purple, sweet, and pink potatoes. It came with fruit but I gave that to Rob.

Lunch: Steak and broccoli, with homemade guacamole. Awwwww, yeah.

Dinner: Toast.

I'm trying to learn to strike a balance in my heart about this all. I don't think that I will live the rest of my life never tasting another slice of pizza, or never consuming anything else that isn't nutritionally valuable. I don't want to be so rigid that any time I make an unhealthy food choice, that I'm tempted to quit and just eat my little heart out. I also don't want to be so lenient that I make no progress in my weight loss endeavors. For now my strategy has been to remove all temptation from my house and avoid them as much as possible when I am eating out. Also, if at all possible, when I am eating out I try to look at the menu online ahead of time so that I can make a decision before I get there. For now I've been using treats as a way of allowing myself to not feel so cornered by eating choices and basically allowing myself a mental break. This seems to be working so far for me, but it's a work in progress and far from perfect. It's been a day of just acknowledging my cravings and doing my best to let them go. I think also, that the longer I eat clean and don't have the foods that tempt me most, my taste for them will diminish. Or at least, this is my hope.



Happy Two Weeks Everyone!

It's been two weeks since experiment My Next 100 started! I have to admit, the accountability makes me get out of bed and go to my workouts even though I want desperately to stay in bed. Which was precisely the case this morning. Rough day to get out of bed.

I promised yesterday that we'd talk about CrossFit. If I can summarize it for you, I'll be surprised. It started out for people who were looking to forge elite fitness. Basically you military types looking to get better, stronger, and faster at what they do. CrossFit defines physical fitness as exhibiting all of the following attributes: Endurance, Stamina, Strength, Flexibility, Power, Speed, Coordination, Agility, Balance and Accuracy. All of the movements in CrossFit are based on developing these attributes. And the concept is pretty simple. Constantly varied, functional movements at high intensity. You'll notice I will never write down that my CF WOD consisted of 45 minutes of cardio. But I might row, and then do push ups and ring rows for 5 rounds or 10 rounds or whatever. It mixes up a lot of different movements and condenses the time you put into them. My heart is still beating fast and my muscles are burning metabolically for a long time afterwards.You will see a mixture of Olympic Weightlifting movements, gymnastics elements, endurance elements, plyometrics, and full body movements. You will see a different WOD (Work out of the day) every time you walk into the CF Box (it's a box not a gym) and you will notice a distinct minimalist sort of set up. Rowing machines, weightlifting bars, plyometrics boxes, kettlebells, medicine balls, pull up bars, and gymnastics rings. It's still the most intimidating workout I have ever approached. And it doesn't ever get easy, you get better and push harder. Awesome.

CrossFit also comes with it's own vocabulary. Here are some of the common abbreviations I tend to use.

CF                                              CrossFit
WOD                                         Work Out of the Day
Box                                             CrossFit Gym
AMRAP                                      As Many Reps/Rounds as Possible
KB                                              Kettle bell
#                                                  Used to indicate pounds ex. 85# instead of 85lbs

I will usually just describe the movements in the workout so that it's not all just a jumble of letters and numbers so I won't go into every single detail regarding all of the abbreviations for the movements.

So why did I choose CrossFit? I had been stalking CrossFit online for about 6 months before I found out about the "universal scalability" of all the movements. You don't have to be super fit to get started, you just have to be dedicated and willing to learn. Since I started in late October/early November I have grown like crazy in my strength and rage of motion. I still can't do everything as "prescribed" but I show up, sub a movement I can do for the one I can't, and put in my hardest effort.

WOD 06/15/12

Five rounds for time of the following:
10 walking lunges
20 box step ups
10 Ab mat situps
20 KB Swings

I finished in 30:53


Breakfast: 1 cup cantaloupe, 1 chicken sausage.

Lunch: Chicken bbq salad and 1 cookie

Snack: cheese, and 1 serving of popchips

Dinner: Chicken stew, tomato salad, and dinner rolls.

It's now gotten quite late and I need to get myself off to bed. We'll talk more CrossFit later as I haven't even begun to touch the tip of the iceberg of information. Think of this as a very brief intro. And thanks for holding my feet to the fire, it's been a great two weeks so far! 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Yesterday, Today, and Paleo

Before I get started, my apologies for the lack of a post yesterday. It was tremendously busy at work and then my afternoon exploded into more busy. That led straight into a busy evening and by the time I got home at 8, all I did was crawl into bed by 9pm.

Yesterday afternoon was spent helping my mom out with a doctor's appointment, getting her discharged from the long term (physical) rehab center she was staying in, and getting her home, up a flight of stairs, and settled. This take a surprising amount of time and energy in 108* F. After which I had dinner plans, and then I drove my tired self home and crawled into bed. And in order to make up the time I missed at work yesterday, I woke up at 4:30 am and dragged myself into the office at 6:30 this morning. My cup of coffee this morning may more accurately be described as a tankard.

Yesterday's WOD and Nutrition 06/13/212

WOD: "Grace" It's funny that I wrote about fforgiveness and grace and then we end up doing a CrossFit WOD named Grace. Grace is 30 Clean and Jerks for time. The prescribed weight for women is 95lbs, but seeing as how my 1 rep maximum weight last week was under that, I just went with 45lbs. I finished in 4:35! I maybe should go slightly higher in weight next time. And then because we had more time left, we did a Cash Out at the end for 5 minutes, as many rounds as possible 20 box steps and 10 push ups. I was so spent I only finished 3 rounds in 5 minutes.

Breakfast: Bacon Avocado and Tomato with fresh squeezed lime juice! Seriously, favorite summer breakfast!!!
Lunch: Chicken salad with southwest ranch.
Snack: Had some trail mix with chocolate covered peanuts that my mom had when I felt my blood sugar getting low in the afternoon.
Dinner: Large hot and sour soup, (not all of it) and 2 pork egg rolls from Pei Wei. I find it's really hard for me to control my servings if I order one of the regular entrees at Pei Wei. They are so tasty! So instead, I went with soup and the egg rolls. Which were also delicious. Not a gluten free meal though, and still not great choices, but even the salad dressings here are loaded with gluten. Even though Asian food is my favorite, I am finding it's a minefield of gluten, and in particular it's the sauces. It may be something that I try to learn to make on my own, but for now I may have to bid it goodbye. Also I got a Coke Zero on my way home when I stopped to get gas because I was so tired. Coffee is too much caffeine at night and I won't be able to sleep, but that was enough to get me home safe in one piece.

And now for Today:


Rest day! No WOD!!!


Breakfast: Chicken in tomato sauce with broccoli. It was already made and in the freezer, don't judge me.

Lunch: Chicken in tomato sauce with broccoli. It was already with me here at work, don't judge me

Dinner: Steak, broccoli and yams! Again, only half of a yam for me.

And finally, let's talk Paleo.

I've had more than one person ask, what on earth I'm talking about when I refer to Paleo. Paleo (PAY-lee-oh) gets it's name from Paleolithic. Basically a caveman style of eating pre-agriculture.

Foods that are encouraged: Lean Meats, Seafood, Vegetables, Fruits, Nuts and Seeds, and Healthy Fats.

Foods to avoid: Grains, Legumes, Dairy, Processed Sugars, Starches and Alcohol.

This is a simple way for me to eat because I have Celiac's and I'm lactose intolerant, which makes it harder for me to deal with fructose as well. If you read back over the last 10 days, you won't see a whole lot of fruit. Maybe a banana or something that is easy to digest. Fruits I will eat are bananas, cantaloupe, and occasionally pears. I used to eat pineapple but it's just a pain to get all the threads out of my braces now. But generally speaking I just don't like fruit, it doesn't taste good to me and it hurts my tummy.

Basic ideas behind this way of eating is that grains, legumes, and dairy all have inflammatory properties that are naturally a part of their make up. These inflammatory properties have a way of building up within the human body and eventually our immune system freaks out and there are a number of autoimmune responses that the body can have. To be real honest, while I read all of the science behind it in "The Paleo Solution," by Robb Wolf, I really don't care. What matters to me is how I have felt since I came off of gluten.

Last spring (2011) my doctor figured out I have Celiac's. This explains why I've always had a problem absorbing minerals and my blood work for the most of my life has shown just trace amounts of sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium as well as severe vitamin D deficiency. Also add to all of that, intermittent bouts of anemia in my life, the worst lasting 3 years and leaving my very ill. When I came off of the gluten a little over a year ago, the first four days were torment. I laid in bed and cried because I hurt so bad. Every single joint in my body hurt. Rob couldn't even hold my hand because the pain was so intense. It felt like everything was on fire, iincluding my entire digestive system. But afterwards, sweet mercy! I have so much less joint pain, digestion issues, and no more sluggishness. And my blood work is more balanced as well.

A Paleo way of eating is simple, not easy. I don't care if it's not easy, because I feel so much better. It's tempting here and there to eat something that has gluten in it like I did last night, but I now have a swollen right knee and hives to show for it. And I firmly believe that the reason I got so sick when we were on our way home from Europe in April was because it was so difficult to avoid gluten on our vacation. My immune system was a mess and it couldn't fight off a little cold, in fact it turned into bronchitis.

If Paleo is something you want to look into, here are some of the resources that have helped me:

What To Eat While Paleo
This is the dowloadable food matrix from Robb Wolf's website. His site is full of wonderful information, and while the podcasts are uncensored (for those with sensitive ears), they contain a lot of very useful information. Also, his books are available on Amazon and through his site, and they are available in print and digital format for your e-reader or iPad. Below is the link to his home page.

Last but not least, my favorite recipes I try are from Everyday Paleo!

Paleo Recipes from a Paleo Mom, Sarah Fragoso

Check out Sarah's cookbooks. I love her recipes! I got her cookbook for Christmas and I regularly use her recipes. She's amazing. She's also a working mom who committed herself to her health and her family's health. And even her kids are Paleo. Kids not eating processed foods? She's done it. Also her story is in the "Everyday Paleo Cookbook," and she is super inspiring. It's a hard transition to make, and it's been difficult in my house even though I don't have kids. I have a husband from Chicago who was used to Chicago eats. But even he has come to see that his way of eating now is much healthier, and that his palate has changed. He  no longer has the taste for rich foods from his native Windy City, although he will always love pizza. Good thing we can't get good deep dish here.

Let me know what questions you may have in the comments. I hope this helps clarify things for those of you who are wondering. Tomorrow I will try to tackle a brief summary of CrossFit, the terminology, and why it's so ridiculously addictive.



Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Forgiveness and Grace

The concept of forgiveness has been cropping up a lot lately. In several conversations with friends and even in church this past Sunday, forgiveness seems to be the over all theme. I wanted to talk about an interesting part of forgiveness that I have struggled with my whole life.

First of all, I won't pretend to take you through a step by step process of forgiveness. This isn't a recipe. It's too personal to describe, and the struggle depends on the hurt that requires forgiveness. What I will say is that I have been through major issues in life and by God's grace have reached a point where I am able to extend forgiveness to the person(s) who has wronged me. However, the one person on the planet that I am slowest to extend forgiveness to will always be me.

Am I alone in this?

Somehow, I don't think I am.

I find myself able to extend a tenacious amount of love and grace to others, cheering them on, believing in them, defending them, loving unconditionally when it gets difficult. And yet when it comes to myself, my own dreams, my own choices, my own mistakes, I get meaner and more judgemental than Simon Cowell with a tone deaf singer. I carry anger against myself. And it's not a Hulk-like rage, but it's a latent simmering that I feel within my soul. It's always with me. For some reason, my heart chooses to arrogantly believe that grace was meant for others and not me.

Wait, arrogantly? Yes.

Is it not arrogant to believe that my mistakes are so great that they fall beyond the love of God? Think about it. If I genuinely believe that the death and resurrection of Jesus paid it all for everyone (and I do!) then why do I continue to punish myself when my Savior has taken all of my burden? All of it. Every single regret, bad choice, silly mistake, opportunity not taken, and fear that has paralyzed me--including every single ounce of excess weight I've allowed to become a part of my life, forgiveness has been extended to me for all of it. The same is true of your past, your mistakes, your indiscretions, your sin, there is grace and forgiveness for you too. If we choose to live in the fullness of the love and grace of God, letting go of the past that binds our feet together like prisoners, we will be free to live an abundant life!

When I think of the life of radiant joy I want to live, and the emotional energy it takes to carry my disappointment and anger alone, it dims my light. I am no longer radiant, incandescent, and shining for the world to see. I grow dim, and flicker, and provide no light. And quite frankly, I find that this living this way is no longer acceptable. It never really was, but I have finally reached a point when I am tired enough of it to let it go.

WOD (Workout of the Day)

Yoga day! Going to do this later tonight as it was a crazy busy morning. I haven't decided which yoga video to do, but I will do one tonight.


Breakfast: 2 Chicken and apple sausage links. Cup of coffee with Splenda and H&H.

Lunch: Chimichurri grilled chicken, broccoli, mineral water with a twist of lime.

Snack: 2 Protein shakes. I was coming unglued and my blood glucose had gotten a little uncomfortably low.

Dinner: Slowcooker Beef Roast. After posting the recipe yesterday, I got a hankering... Steamed broccoli and 1/2 a yam.

Forgiveness. It's hard to let go of the past, particularly when you've gotten good at dragging it around with you. I'm determined to quit reliving it, and let it go. It's time. You don't have to comment about it if you don't want to, but are there areas of your life that you have allowed to remain untouched by grace? Are you extending forgiveness to everyone, but you?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Be Prepared

Eating right requires being prepared for it. Not only does it mean cleaning out the pantry and the fridge, but it means getting down and dirty and cooking some food. Cooking comes naturally for me because I was brought up cooking since I was very young. I started learning how to knead tortilla dough by hand at the age of five. For me, cooking is my birthright. For others, cooking is a punishment. But it doesn't have to be that way! I think it's easier when you minimize the messes and make sure that your food is tasty. Today, I will even give you a few recipes to try.

Let's talk about Batch Cooking. Simply, it's cooking a lot at once. I do this with a lot of things, chicken, beef, pork, and veggies. If you're going to cook up two chicken breasts for dinner, why not throw a few more on for left overs? Last week I made a chimichurri marinade for my chicken, poured it over about five pounds of it, and then grilled it all up. Once it was cooked and had cooled a little, I measured out portions, put the individual servings in zippy bags, and then froze them. Easy access chicken to microwave and throw in lunches. Steaming veggies, same thing. Steam a giant bag of broccoli, portion it out and throw it in the freezer. Bonus here: you minimize spoilage and throwing out food that goes bad.

My favorite tool to use for batch cooking is a large slowcooker with a removable crock. You can prep it at night and then pull it out and turn it on in the morning, viola! Dinner is done when you get home from work. I will also double recipes in the slowcooker when possible and portion out leftovers in freezable containers. Pull them out, pop them into lunch boxes--provided you have a microwave available for lunch. If not, then pull them out for dinner and microwave your little heart out. Did you know that you don't even have to defrost individually frozen chicken breasts when you drop them in the slowcooker? Just make sure that you are including a liquid with your seasoning and you allow for at least 8 hours cooking time when you are using frozen chicken. GENIUS! (I had to learn that from a pin on Pinterest, and now I have no idea which one it was.) Now for some ideas that you can use.

Beef Roast

5lbs or so of beef, which ever roast or large chunk is available at the lowest price. I'm not too picky. And I still cannot afford grass fed beef at $10+ per lb. Just trim off excess fat.
1-2 cups of red wine, whatever kind you have on hand.
1cup gluten free beef stock, or 1 cup water with gluten free beef bullion.
2 carrots, washed, peeled and cut into large chunks. Alternately, 1 cup of baby carrots.
2-3 stalks of celery, washed and cut into large chunks
1 medium onion, peeled and cut into large chunks.
1 tablespoon minced garlic from a jar, or 2-3 cloves pressed in a garlic press.
Salt and pepper, and a couple of bay leaves.
2 tsps Worcestershire Sauce. (Not strictly Paleo, but it's a nice addition. I've never had a Celiac reaction to it, but I'm not sure if it's 100% gluten free. If you're real sensitive, be very cautious or omit it.)
Drop it all in, put it on low, and behold what the slowcooker presents you after 6-8 hours! It will be fall apart meaty gloriousness!

Take a couple of cups of the broth and strain it, put in small saucepan over medium low heat. In a small bowl, take a heaping teaspoon of arrowroot powder and mix with 1/3 cup of cold water. Once that is combined pour slowly into the saucepan with your broth, stirring the whole time. It will tighten up like a gravy, but arrowroot powder is carb free and grain free unlike cornstarch or flour. Careful using too much though, as it can make your gravy sticky or gummy. It also won't take too long to tighten up. Play with the amounts until you get a consistency that you like. I ere on the side of having it remain thin.You may also want to add a little more seasoning, pepper or salt. Serve with veggies of your choice and store the leftovers as you wish.

Frozen Chicken

5-6 Individually frozen chicken breasts, as in not all stuck together. If it's an iceberg of chicken this won't work.
1 20+ ounce jar of your choice, this can be salsa, marinara, hot sauce, it's your choice.
Add extra seasoning, garlic, a little salt, basil if you went with marinara, chopped tomatoes, whatever feels right.

Pour sauce over it, and cook for 8 hours on low. Pull apart the chicken with fork, serve with favorite veggies.

Chimichurri for large batches

1 bunch cilantro
2 fresh jalapenos
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbs white wine vinegar
1-2 tsp salt to taste
2 tbs minced garlic, or 3 cloves of fresh garlic, peeled.

Remove the stems from the cilantro and rinse well, and drop it in the blender. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend away! This will make enough marinade for at least 5lbs forth of food. It also won't keep for long in the fridge. It's good for chicken, pork, and beef. I haven't tried it on anything else, but I think it might be good on fish or shrimp. Marinade your protein of choice in the fridge for at least an hour, then grill to your little heart's delight. I don't think I would throw this in the slowcooker, this is for immediate cooking. Grilling is best in my opinion.


Today was a benchmark WOD, meaning we spent the morning working on a 1 rep max on Squat Clean. I may dislike this movement even more than the Clean and Jerk, but I did achieve a 1 RM at 80#.


Breakfast: Premier Nutrition Chocolate Protein Shake, banana, large cup of coffee. Mmmm, coffee. (I was late in getting home from CrossFit)

Lunch: Chicken in tomato sauce and broccoli. Mineral water with a twist of lime.

Snack: Premier Nutrition Protein Shake, Vanilla this time.

Dinner: Roasted chicken, spinach salad, veggies--if the avocados are ripe it's going to be tomatoes and avocados. If not it'll be something else.

There is no end to the types of food you can prepare ahead of time. And if you have a few basic proteins done and in the freezer, you can mix and match your sides to add variety and flavor in order to keep your options fresh and tasty. The only think I wouldn't really recommend cooking in large batches would be seafood. Given the high water content of most fish, it gets dried out or rubbery if it's microwaved. Shrimp may make it if you have some leftovers, but it's costly enough that I wouldn't risk it in large batches and I certainly wouldn't try them in a slowcooker. There are plenty of online resources for cooking ideas, just make sure you make them big, and portion out your servings for a later time. Saves you time and messes later. If you all have recipes or ideas to share, please leave them in the comments!



Sunday, June 10, 2012

Hiccups and Headaches

Updated: It appears that Blogger doesn't like taking format orders from my iPad, I updated the format of this post to make it slightly more readable.

It may just be me, but I get the hiccups rather easily. If I eat something that is too spicy, or the first sip of soda, or if I laugh too hard I get the hiccups. Sometimes in the winter when I go from my warm bed and pull the covers back and I get really cold very quickly I get the hiccups. Today I got them for no reason at all, and they lasted all day. And they were those painful kind that feels like your sternum is being separated from the rest of your body. So, that was pleasant. And then I got a repeat of the migraine I was fighting last night. In case you've never had the pleasure of rocking a migraine with hiccups shaking you every few seconds, be glad. It's not something I would do for fun. It's 8:30pm now so all my hopes for a meaningful post are gone. Y'all are just getting a quick summary for today, and then I promise you a more meaningful healthy living related post tomorrow.


At home mini WOD. Today was supposed to be a rest day but since I got a headache last night I didn't get my swimming done. This morning I did five rounds of air squats, sit ups, and push ups 10 reps of each movement. I was going to do the rounds for time but I must have hit my stop watch button in one of my transitions because I don't think I finished in under 8 minutes. Next time I'll use my Gymboss timer instead.


Breakfast: Huevos Rancheros, this time with bacon! And today was indulge day for me, so I had some toast.

Lunch: Mongolian BBQ, beef with bean sprouts, peppers, onions, broccoli, water chestnuts, and a gluten free "dragon sauce," served with rice, which I chose to eat as well.

Dinner: Haddock pan fried in olive oil with garlic, salt and pepper. I made mashed cauliflower out of purple cauliflower and it just looked weird. Also, since I served the fish with lime wedges, when the lime juice hits the purple cauliflower, it turns a bright hot pink. This might be fun for moms who have little kids that won't eat green vegetables. As for me, I prefer my cauliflower to fool me into thinking that I'm eating potatoes. I hope you have all had a wonderful weekend! Let's make this a great week!



Saturday, June 9, 2012

I Got Dunked!

I had an interesting morning. Today was my appointment for Hydrostatic Body Composition Analysis from Fitness Wave. I had been kind of sitting on the fence on doing this type of test for a while now, but I wasn't satisfied with just knowing how much I weigh. Since I am doing the kind of work the develops muscle and that will change your overall body composition, I wanted to have more precise numbers. Now I have used hand held devices before, and even scale type devices, but the overall consensus of studies says that the dunking method is the most accurate. Google it if you don't believe me.

I scheduled my appointment a few weeks ago when I decided to pull the trigger on my experiment. This was the appointment closest to June 1st that I could get, and I figured that for my purposes it would work. It's actually a quick process. I made my appointment online and paid and then waited until today. I went to a mobile lab that travels around the Phoenix area, today they were set up in Gilbert and my husband got dragged into going so that we could have a couple of pictures documenting the process. But basically, the actual dunking doesn't take very long. You get into the tank and blow out all the air from your lungs and stick your head under water while they take the measurements. What I got for my dunking? Wonderful amounts of information. I was less body fat than I had imagined. (Sigh of relief!) But not only do you get the body composition results, but you get metabolic information on your caloric needs based on your lean body mass and activity levels. They have a caloric range from weight loss to weight gain, as well as personalized information on how many calories you burn per minute of exercise, with a wide list of exercises listed. They also list body fat goals and what the weight loss would be to reach those goals. It's a little intimidating to look at end result sort of numbers, but it's all information that I needed to have. October is a long ways away, and still a lot of workouts and great nutrition away. I'm going to focus on today for now.


Swimming day! We are now waiting for the sun to go down before we swim because it's too hot still and I don't want to turn my husband into a lobster. I will update our swimming once it's been completed.


Breakfast: Premier Nutrition Chocolate Shake. I was nervous, I couldn't eat.

Lunch: Grilled chicken medallions with cheese and bacon, green beans, carrots, and side salad. I also had a bite of Rob's cornbread. It was ok. Didn't want any more. And coffee. Mmmm, coffee. And this was a gluten free, low carb lunch at...Cracker Barrel. I didn't think it was possible, but it was!

Snack: Vanilla Premier Nutrition Protein Shake. And some Artisana Raw Coconut Butter. That stuff is just heaven on earth. Unless you hate coconut in which case I am sad for you.

Dinner: Chicken in tomato sauce. Basically, pan seared chicken with mesquite seasoning, and then some salsa from a jar, simmered all together all yummy like. Yams and broccoli.

Going to make dinner now since we don't want to wait until we are on our way back from the hospital from seeing my mom. She's doing a lot better and may get to go home tomorrow or Monday. I can't believe the amount of physical therapy she has ahead of her, but she's a trooper and she's going to make it.

If you are interested in doing this kind of testing, I would suggest you just do a Google search to see what is in your area. I know that this is kind of spendy for most people, and that's one of the reasons that I waited so long to get it done. I will say that I am already encouraged by knowing more about my starting point. And that is really the point, this is the beginning. Weigh loss and life change are a marathon of mental and physical endurance, and I am so excited for this challenge. On a brief tangent, I will say that Urban Decay's Eyeshadow Potion is the most amazing eyeshadow primer on the planet. I put on makeup before I go and get dunked, and my eyeshadow is still on my eyelids. Also, I dropped my eyeshadow on the dog this morning. Since he's white and now sparkly, he totally looks like he's rocking the Team Edward look. And now I have to give him a bath.



Friday, June 8, 2012

Mama Needs Her Beauty Sleep

I was in training for the better part of today. Not my favorite thing in the world on most days because I have ADHD and tend to get rather squirmy. Usually though, I beat my brain into submission and make it through, but not today. I was tired, super duper painfully tired. And even though I had the best intentions of taking notes, I ended up taking rather copious doodles. After which I got distracted by Pinterest and then I blinked and we were done. I didn't stand a chance even with the largest cup of coffee I could find. But it wasn't just at work that I noticed my inability to concentrate, it had started at about 6am this morning.
My WOD this morning was on the longer side and exhausting.  200 meters rowing and 30 pushups, 5 rounds for time. I finished in 23:20 and I made my goal of finishing under 25 minutes. But I think I could have done it faster had I not been fighting myself mentally the whole time. I was so sleepy! I had only gotten 5-ish hours of sleep last night, and I found that on my pushups, even though I wasn’t physically burned out yet, I wanted to rest because I was sleepy tired. You see, I spent several hours last night with my mom at the hospital. She’d had full knee replacement surgery and was finally in recovery when Rob and I went to go see her. We spent some time with her, brought her a lovely plant, I helped feed her dinner while she was awake. All in all, she was doing great, but understandably in a lot of pain and quite uncomfortable even through the pain medication. We left the hospital at 9:30pm last night, grabbed dinner at about 10-10:30-ish and then made it home at 11 to get ready for bed and managed to crawl into bed by 11:30pm last night. I don’t think it took me long to fall asleep, but I still got up at 5am this morning to drag myself to CrossFit. I briefly tried to rationalize going for an evening workout today, but Rob was absolutely right in telling me to go in the morning. All I know is that when I get home, before dinner or anything else happens, I am going to take a nap.

Sleep deprivation on one night is hard on the body and increases stress levels and stress hormones for the short term, but long term sleep deprivation increases those stress hormones for long periods of time that have shown in study after study to have long term negative health impact. It also makes it harder to lose weight. Robb Wolf, author of “The Paleo Solution,” has long advocated 8-9 hours of sleep in a perfectly dark room. Now, for the longest time I thought that my magic number of hours was 7. I could get by on 6, but I preferred 7 hours of sleep. I decided two weeks ago, that I was going to try to get as much sleep as I possibly could. Eight hours on weeknights, nine if possible on the weekends. The only problem I run into is that I am a morning person and I have a tendency of waking up at 5 every morning. So I had to start shutting it down at night at around 8:30. As in, crawl into my pj’s, brush my teeth, get ready for bed. So by 9pm on most nights, I’ve been shutting the lights off and going to sleep. So much for seven hours of sleep! I cannot tell you how much better I have felt since I have made sleep a priority! It was grossly apparent to me today when I couldn’t even concentrate on a given task for an extended period of time. I didn’t realize what a difference it had made until now. I personally had to be ok with walking away from my computer or the TV at night in order to take care of my body. I understand that walking away from nurturing your family or taking care of them isn’t always an option. But what if you just traded the late night (fill in the blank here) for an extra hour of sleep? Or what if you—now for some this may be sacrilegious but I’m gonna say it anyway—PAUSED the Netflix, or youtube, or anything else that may be usurping your sleep from you. What if instead of entertainment, you chose rest? Weird concept for most of us, isn’t it? I like being entertained. I like Netflix and youtube and the internet. I’ve come to like sleep a little bit more though.

200 meter row and 30 pushups, 5 rounds for time. Finished in 23:20
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs and 3 sausage links
Lunch: Spinach salad with chicken breast, sunflower seeds, bacon crumbles, hardboiled egg, a few cheese shreds, and ranch.
Dinner: Steak salad with guacamole and chipotle ranch. Update on last night’s dinner. 06/07/12 Since we had to go straight to the hospital after work, we ended up eating dinner at a pizza place at around 10pm last night. I had a salad with grilled chicken. I made the choice to have a couple of the mild wings and a mozzarella stick because I rarely have a chance to have one and I find them delightful. Whoever first thought to fry cheese was a freaking genius!!! Also, not something I advocate for everyday eats. Fun food choice though considering that we were at my FAVORITE pizza place. Notice something? Yeah, that's right. No pizza.  

Just some thoughts about rest. Our bodies need it, and we fight it so much sometimes.  I had to take a nap before finishing this post. And now I'm going to go crawl into my jammies. Good night everyone!



Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Office Party

I work in a cubicle. I’ve done my best to cover the padded gray walls with as much silliness as possible in order to make them less gray and padded and cubicle-y. Sadly not everyone puts this kind of effort into their wall art so we find ourselves looking for things to make work more exciting. In my office, this means the office party. We take our office parties so seriously, I’m on a committee specifically tasked with planning these events. Typically it’s for holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries for years of service, but occasionally it’s just because it’s been too long since we’ve had a potluck. I get put on these committees in almost every department I go to because of two reasons: 1) I’m creative at planning parties and 2) I make tasty eats. Today is an office party day and it’s kind of freaking me out. (You know, for a change.) It’s the first party we are having since I started this, and I don’t think I was prepared to feel tested so soon.
I went to the grocery store last night and I bought soda, including Coke Zero. I love you Coke Zero, but I don’t want to drink you. Also I bought bags of candy. Three of these glorious bags filled with chocolate. And it’s all sitting under my desk nonchalantly screaming my name! Stupid chocolate knows my name! It appears that no one else is aware of the screaming, so it may just all be in my head. Comforting thought. There will also be cake. Buttercream frosted awesomeness to be divided up like pirate’s plunder. I knew it was going to be a tough day filled with temptation, so I did my best to make a plan.
I tried to take precautions and I bought chocolate that I’m not a super huge fan of, or that I can’t eat because it will make my braces hurt more because they still stinking hurt. And I threw them in the freezer when we got home last night to make it even more painful if I tried. I have a couple of other things going for me that are very helpful. The party is after lunch so I am not going to walk into it on an empty stomach. Like shopping on an empty stomach, showing up to food temptations on an empty stomach is a foolish choice.  I am going to save my lunch time mineral water for party time to avoid the soda. And I will not get roped into serving cake. Lastly, my department is so fast on the cake and treats, there shouldn’t be any leftovers for me to worry about. Thank heavens! Now as I’ve stated before, I am not opposed to having treats here and there, but I have had treats already this week so my choice is to not participate in eating them today. I think being prepared mentally for the challenge is half the battle. I know that this is all food I love to eat, but it’s also food that doesn’t nourish my health--it hinders my health. I am prepared for this to be difficult, but I am also prepared to say no.
Rest day! Yay for rest days because I am super sore. Also I totally got to sleep in. Double yay!
Breakfast: Huevos Rancheros. Super duper tasty and really easy. In an non-stick skillet add some olive oil and heat it up on medium heat, add about a cup of salsa from a jar let it cook for a couple of minutes and then add eggs, reduce heat and cover. The eggs basically poach in the salsa and the steam. I just serve them like that, no tortilla needed. Coffee with H&H and Splenda
Snack: Vanilla Protein Shake by Premier Nutrition. It’s not that it has to be this brand, it’s that this is the low carb brand that Costco carries, and since I’m such a huge fan of Costco, this is what I buy.
Lunch: 4-5 ounces turkey breast, leftover bacon roasted cabbage. Mmm, bacon.
Dinner: BlackTie Ono (fancy name for fish), steamed broccoli and mashed yams with ginger. I will only have half a cup of the yams.
I might add an afternoon protein shake if I get hungry in the afternoon, but I will add a note to tomorrow’s post if I do.

Being that I started My Next 100 just last Friday, I wanted to give myself time before I allowed myself to be pushed by a lot of temptation. I know it’s silly to stress about a one hour long party with cake and ice cream but temptation is difficult. I've made a plan and I know will succeed. Triumph in the face of temptation hasn't been my strength in the past, otherwise we wouldn't be having this conversation. What tips and ideas do you have to avoid temptation? What pitfalls are usually the ones that trip you up? Thanks for the help and encouragement; I couldn’t do this without you!



Wednesday, June 6, 2012

I'm So Bad

Don’t worry I’m not trying to remake an MJ video via blog post. Although the thought is now amusing me greatly, I will stick with my original plan. The first time I noticed the phenomenon I will describe was while I was waiting to get weighed in at a weight-loss group meeting. People chatting in line and inevitably you hear someone’s whispered confession,
“I am so bad! This week I ate ….”
Weigh-ins are not the only place you here this though. On elevators, in the break room at work, when you are out for coffee or dinner or in the mall, you will hear the phrase,
“I am so bad but I am going to have…” and you can just fill in that blank. Past, present, future imperfect hokey-pokey-turn-yourself- about tense, it doesn’t matter. You’ll hear it absolutely anywhere you go! Just stop and listen for a while. This is easy for me because I LOVE people-watching and I am a notorious eavesdropper. (Yes that’s a word.) More than anything I love observing human behavior. Malls are great for this, but the Smorgasbord Granddaddy of all people watching has got to be the Atlanta Airport. I heart the Atlanta Airport!!! Sorry, tangent, just stop and listen the next time you have an opportunity to observe people around food. 
I’m so bad. When you are talking about a food choice that you have made, be it past present or future tenses, this is a reeeeeediculous way to describe yourself! This would be appropriate if you were confessing a murderous rampage, not if you murdered a brownie or five. And the repercussions of stating this over and over whenever you make a food choice or a decision to skip a workout or something that doesn’t fit in with your healthy living plan—these repercussions are huge. Why? Because you will eventually start to believe what you are saying. “I’m bad,” will eventually mean, “I can’t do this because I’m bad.” That is the message that gets reinforced every time you say these words. I’m guilty of it as well. Not only that, when you use these defeating phrases you are transferring power to whatever it is that makes you “bad.”
The second phenomenon I observed when standing in line for weigh-ins was this gem of an interaction:
Meeting Leader to participant: “Good morning! How are you?”
Meeting Participant: “I don’t know. We’ll see what the scale says.”
You may not have ever participated in a weight-loss group that makes you stand in line to weigh in, so this may be harder to witness in person. But do you ever hold your breath while the digital scale is blinking and then once it gives you your number, spiral into the depths of despair? (Thanks to Anne of Green Gables.) I have flung myself on the bed and allowed a number to throw me into a shame spiral for sure. Many more times than I can count. And it usually lasts for days and then I find myself saying, “I’m so bad,” while inhaling the aforementioned brownie or five.
Before you ask, I didn’t eat five brownies for dinner. I did however, find my mouth hurting so bad because of going to the orthodontist yesterday morning that the only thing I was able to eat was a cup of French Onion soup with a dinner roll and a couple of soft cookies from Paradise Bakery. I had to roll with the punches of feeling like I’d been kicked in the teeth. And then I realized I’d had four cookies in the course of one day and I was about to throw down with a major shame spiral. Here’s the fun thing though, I didn’t. I went on with life and took in the realization as information that I now had, and something that I will improve upon tomorrow. So no shame spiral last night, self awareness and an early bedtime with a couple of Aleve. Still calling it a win for the day.

WOD 06/06/12
Warm up
3 rounds, 5 ring rows, 5 KB swings, 200 meters rowed (Totally fell when I was trying to do some pull ups, laid on the floor for a while so that my ego could recover.)
Clean and Jerk 1*1*1*1*1*1*1. Seven one rep intervals adding weight each time looking for a one rep max load. I don’t remember my last PR on Clean and Jerk, so I am calling this one my PR at 85#.  Probably one of the hardest lifts for me because of how much you use your knees, but they did great today. Also, super exhausting work.
Breakfast: 2 and a half eggs, 2 slices of bacon, giant cup of coffee with H&H and Splenda
Lunch: Grilled chicken, protein shake, and mineral water.
Snack: Protein Shake
Dinner: Attempt #2 at steak and bacon grilled cabbage. Hopefully after trying to let my mouth rest I’ll be able to chew my dinner.

The end result is that I am not going to allow myself to think that “I’m so bad.” I'm trading it up for,
“I’m such a badass.”
Because I am.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

When the Mentally Lazy Hit The Wall

I’ve heard runners talk about “the wall.” I’ve read this multiple times when marathoners, iron man triatheletes, or Olympic athletes get interviewed. They all talk about “The Wall.” It’s the moment in time when they feel like they cannot physically go any further.  Not that I’ve ever experienced this alleged wall. Not this girl. Nope. I don’t run unless I am being chased. By wild animals. With guns. So almost never is what I’m saying.  Being that I am less than one week into My Next 100, it would be naïve of me to believe that I won’t experience a point in time that I don’t want to quit. The night that I get way into trying to beat my top score on Tetris or that I get sucked into a million summertime reality TV shows and go to bed way late but I still have to wake up early for my morning workout. (Seriously, I try to swear them off every summer, but resistance is futile!) There will be days that I just want to quit. So what does a girl do then? I sat down and talked with my friend Katie about this very subject.
Katie is freaking amazing! She’s amazingly gifted in a number of ways, but mostly we’re going to concentrate on one of the most unique ways she’s gifted. Katie is a runner.  Tall, lean, naturally svelte she has an amazing capacity to run. She, by her own admission, can spend months eating nothing but mashed potatoes and go out running the next day and do it well. (So far, not the kind of thing a big girl wants to hear her talking about.) But I wanted to get her perspective on her walls and what she has done to overcome them in the past.
“Basically, how have you fostered mental tenacity and perseverance to finish those long races and treks you’ve completed?”
Katie has, quite possibly, the best laugh on the planet. She laughed at my question, not because it’s a laughable question but because she readily tells me that she is, “mentally lazy,” and if it gets difficult, she quits. But she and her husband and her younger brother just finished a Rim to Rim at the Grand Canyon, and I wanted to know how she made it. Runner or not, that is hard on your body. She was able to hone in on three things that helped her when she wanted to give up.
1)      Have something to work towards that gives you built in accountability. Katie decided to raise funds for an orphanage in Africa where she had volunteered in the past. Completing the Rim to Rim meant money for precious children to receive care. Accountability doesn’t mean that you have to blog about it like I do, but it means that you are invested in such a way that someone is holding your feet to the fire.
2)      She focused on what God was teaching her. Similar to what I wrote yesterday, she made a mind, body, and soul connection that gave her strength to keep going. Place your focus outside of yourself instead of on all of the reasons you want to quit.
3)      She realized that her body was capable of so much more than she even understands. Katie’s realization came three miles from the end of the trail. She saw that the end was near and that she was going to make it, and it was so overwhelming and beautiful to her, she wept for that realization. I couldn’t agree more! Every time I finish a CrossFit WOD and I’m laying on the floor gasping for air, I am so pleased and surprised that I’m not dead. And it proves to me that I can do it.
And perhaps I don’t experience the same walls as a runner does, but weight loss and life change are a marathon of time and commitment. There are going to be walls.


Today is yoga day! I like yoga for a couple of reasons. Mostly, I love it because I want a yoga booty. But also because I need it increase flexibility. I am using videos for my yoga days because there is no way I could afford a yoga studio and a CF membership. Not if I want to retire eventually, which I do. So today’s video is “The Biggest Loser: The Workout- Weight Loss Yoga,” Starring Bob Harper. If there is anyone out there that thinks yoga is a pansy workout, get yourself this video right now. Talk to me later after you drag your sorry self off the floor.


Breakfast, Two cookies from the orthodontist’s office. I get two cookies ever 4-6 weeks. I’m a-ok with allowing treats here and there, just as long as cookies don’t become my breakfast every single day. Also eggs and bacon, and coffee with H&H and Splenda
Lunch, Chicken salad with southwest dressing and ice water.  Forgot my fizzy water, sadface.
Snack, Vanilla Protein Shake from Premier Nutrition. I love the to-go packs so I’m not mixing a gritty powder in the break room at work or bringing a blender in my lunch bag.
Dinner: STEAK! And bacon grilled cabbage! OMG, a day that contains bacon twice is a day worth LIVING!!!

A toast to you readers: May you face your walls with courage and tenacity and find the strength to keep going. As Coach Dairus says in CrossFit every morning, “You can do anything for two minutes. Keep going!”