The Ins and Outs of an Ordinary Life

Monday, January 30, 2006

Premium vs. Regular

I attended a meeting for 2 days-- Friday and Saturday. I was a bad girl! I always find it hard at meetings because I have to give up control of my food choices and my schedule. Breakfast was bagels and muffins. At least there was a nice fruit salad. Lunch was sandwiches (more processed carbs). Dinner was either beef or chicken-- no vegetarian option. Breaks with cookies, soda, and.... here is the real killer.... a candy bar. Big bowls of M&Ms, licorice, gummy everything. They even provided little bags so you could pack up your candy and endulge all afternoon (or for the next few days, if you really needed it!). So a handful of peanut M&Ms and more than a few gummy things later, I'm sitting at this meeting feeling awful. It wasn't just the guilt, but I was nauseous and inattentive and itchy. I drank a whole bunch of water and the feeling passed. Luckily I did not "crash" on the way down from this sugar buzz. So here is the lesson I learned. The better you feed your body, the less tolerant of crap food your body becomes. Once you become a finely tuned precision machine, you have to feed yourself premium. "Regular" just doesn't allow your body to function with efficiency and those bad choices lead to food hangovers. Long-term, engine damage requires a mechanic and the investment of large amounts of $$$$. I'd rather invest the time and money up front to buy and prepare high quality premium food.

Yesterday I switched back to premium. I had a multi-grain hot cereal for breakfast, fresh fruit and lentil salad for lunch and for dinner I made falafel burgers and spinach salad with yogurt-tahini dressing. I burned some calories on the arc trainer. I did a LBWO. Premium feels so much better than regular.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Reflective Energy

I had tons of energy in spin class yesterday. Bring on the hills! I kept adding on the resistance and taking it in the legs. I would look at my heart rate monitor and think, yeah, I still got plenty of room to kick azz! I was disappointed when the hour was up.
The spinning studio has one wall of windows and the bikes face the windows. On a winter evening, you can see your reflection in those windows while you are riding. Last night I got so much feedback and motivation from my reflection-- I'm sure that was one source of my energy. I even kept my glasses on to really keep the image sharp (often I take off my glasses because its easier to wipe away the sweat running into my eyes). I could see the cuts in my shoulders and arms and the trimmer lines around my waist and hips. I could see when my upper body was rocking a bit too much. I could see my cadence, not just feel it. I could also see that I was leaving the guy on the bike next to me in the dust (even thought we weren't going anywhere).
Now, I'm an eye doctor, and I understand the power of vision, but I never thought vision would take me up and over the hills with the power and energy that I had yesterday.
Hope it stays!

Monday, January 23, 2006

Shifting Gears

I seemed to have shifted gears over the last few days...Jury duty totally threw off my eating and fitness routines. Then, over the weekend, I did not go to the gym in the morning, which is my usual pattern, and that seemed to throw off my entire day. Instead of just going to the gym, I found myself contemplating how I was going to rearrange my day to get everything done including working out. I made it to the gym on Saturday, but I never got there on Sunday.

I was released from jury duty at about 11 am on Friday, so I went shopping. I was determined to find some nice fitted jeans-- I'm sick of the baggy ones that are big enough to wear over my workout clothes or longjohns! Mission accomplished. Luckily, I was not put on a jury, so I am back to work. I am actually thrilled to be back at work, although the workload after being out of the office for 3 days is somewhat intimidating. My car is in the shop, which means DH has to pick me up at the station, so I have to leave work at a certain time and hopefully we will both go to the gym. I seem to be enjoying a "daily cooking" phase, so there are lots of leftovers for lunch and even some meals in the freezer. I'm using the big crockpot at least once a week, and the little one to prepare hot cereal overnight during the week. Hopefully back to my usual food and fitness routines.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Life on a Dysfunctional Island With a Crockpot

Came into work today and the network is down. Cannot access the internet or my email or my working files. I am writing this in Word, to post when the network comes back. Yesterday somebody remarked to me “can you imagine not having a computer?” It’s not the computer as much as having it connected to the rest of the world. I have the computer, but without an internet connection, it’s one step short of useless. I have become an island. I can’t even access my own files, so I’m a dysfunctional island. Yeesh. Hopefully this will be a temporary problem.

I had a very healthy 3 day weekend. I got to the gym on Saturday, Sunday and Monday for 2 spinning classes, 4 miles on the treadmill, 1 “extended” UBWO” and 1 “basic” LBWO. I ate well, except for the calzone on Saturday afternoon, and even that was not real bad. I am down to 108 lbs. I have broken the 109 plateau, and hopefully I can stay on this side of 109. I went to Whole Foods on Saturday and bought lots of good for you grains and beans, like steel cut oats, barley, lentils, and wheatberries and black beans. On Sunday I did some good for you cooking. I made black bean and wheatberry soup, morrocan roast vegetables, and oriental chicken in the crockpot. I got this great crockpot cookbook out of the library and there’s about a hundred recipes in there that I want to try. Yesterday I made maple-oat granola in the crockpot, but it required stirring at ½ to 1 hour intervals over about 6 hours, so I don’t know if it was worth it. I experimented with finding the right amount of grains, water and time to prepare breakfast overnight in the mini-crockpot. Today’s concoction seemed to be pretty good! From the mental health perspective, I dealt with all the dry cleaning and laundry that was returned and emptied all the boxes. I removed every plastic bag from my everyday clothes in my closet, and pruned my wardrobe a bit. It sure felt good this morning when I opened my closet and I could “see” and find my clothes. DH and I went to the movies on Saturday night at the Paramount to see Good Night and Good Luck. The movie was very good and we got to spend some “quality” time together.

AND DH has gotten the OK to start rehabbing his Achilles. He has some PT scheduled and he has started riding the bike at the gym, for short amounts of time and low intensity. He is not wearing the clogs, at least not all the time, and his back feels better. He has been keeping a daily log of what he eats and his workouts, and has a much better idea of what he is doing right and what he is doing wrong. His weight is slowly starting to come down. Life is good, except for temporarily being a dysfunctional island.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

A Mother's Triathlon

Yesterday I left my gym bag at home, in the confusion of coordinating 2 cars and 3 drivers. So I didn't go to the gym. I went home and competed in a Mother's Triathlon. The 3 events were laundry, cooking and cleaning up the kitchen, and paperwork/cleaning up desk. I did very well in 2 out of 3 events. I washed 2 loads and folded 4 loads of laundry, I emptied dishwasher, filled dishwasher, cooked 2 dinners (1 for me, 1 for the carnviores), and packed 2 lunches, but I only got through about half of the papers piled on my desk. During the transitions between events, I administered medication to son #2 who has a cold, had a phone conversation with my mom, took messages for other family members, added a few items to my Thursday Peapod delivery and planned today's coordination of 2 cars and 3 drivers. And it only took 3.5 hours. Overall, it was a very productive evening, and it went a long way toward helping me find that balance between work, family, and gym. Most women struggle to find a way to balance work and family, but for me it's work, family and gym. Fitness has become a priority in my life, and I won't give it less than the attention and time it deserves. So, yes, it's a struggle to find that balance, and everyone once in a while I need a non-gym day or I just screw up on the details (like leaving gym bag at home) , but guess where I am going today after work!

Monday, January 09, 2006

The Family Thing

DH and I had several conversations about what he needs to do to lose some weight and what we can do to get the kids to a better place. He has identifed some of his "weak spots," which he calls the 3 Bs-- bread, beer (and wine) and before bed (after dinner). He is now keeping a daily log-- the accountability part is key, IMHO. And he is giving up the alcohol. Son #1 is signing up for a teen spinning class that starts in Feb, and son #2 will be going to a "get ready for baseball" workout twice a week. I have just under 3 months until my 50th birthday, and I feel great about it. Hopefully I will lose a few more pounds and bring my BF down a bit, but I'm starting the year in a good place, with a strong foundation, a support system, and a plan to keep going in the right direction! Hopefully we can keep this family thing going, because we can all do better. Isn't that what family is about, anyway?

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Thinking Alike

I have been reading alot of blogs lately, and I have found many that have written about a new attitude for the new year. It almost seems silly to write something of my own, when other people have written it so well. Great minds do think alike.
So here are a few excerpts:

From kyra:
It's time to stop thinking about fitness as something extra or additional to ADD to our lives. It's time to look at it as something that was taken away. Something that went missing, and we're left with a gaping hole. Maybe it was filled up with something - but it isn't the right thing. It's time to figure out how to fix the problem.It isn't Extra-cise. It's life. It's time to start living it to the fullest by being the best you can be with all the pieces in the right order, and in the right spots.

From Jim:
The greatest excuse in the world doesn't offset the tremendous regret and disappointment you feel when you aren't living up to your standards. Yes, I will have setbacks and disappointments along the way but I still keep coming back to the simple and profound truth...I can't accept doing anything less than my best. I say ditch the debate and just get to the gym... Don't let setbacks and difficulties twist you into thinking that exercise and fitness aren't important.

From annalisa:
But I guess I am saying is that you only have one body, and one life, so you'd better take care of what you've got - NOW. And you should be (I should be... I am, actually) grateful for your ability to run and do all the things in your life that you like to do, because there will come a time when you can't do those things any longer - be it from old age, or something more sudden and surprising. No one really knows what life has in store for them. At any given moment, your world can be turned upside down. Life can kick your ass, and life can end in a matter of weeks, or days, or even hours, if that's the way things play out. So make the most of it. Get out there and live a little. No, go out and live a lot. I know I will be.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Year of Fifty

Do I write the usual blather about all that I have accomplished in the year past (or all that I did NOT accomplish) and my goals/resolutions for the year ahead? Well, I feel somewhat obliged so let me make it short and simple.

I am not the same person I was a year ago, physically or emotionally, maybe even spiritually (I have not yet decided if spirituality applies here-- more on this in another post). I am in a much better place.

2006 is the year that I will turn fifty, a milestone, and I am determined to be the fifty year old woman that I envision: strong and beautiful from the inside out. I will be true to myself, I will find balance between self, work, and family, I will spend more time nurturing relationships that I have neglected.

"Exercise is what makes my days satisfying and my nights peaceful. I’ve tried other methods but all the other methods involve hangovers of one form or another." Gordo Byrn
Yeah, no more emotional hangovers or beating myself up or eating crap and feeling like it.