Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Me @ 30: Food!

As I mentioned in my Week 3 recap, I'm trying to eat better.

Earlier in the year, I used a low-carb diet to lose half of the 30 pounds I had gained last fall. It was effective, but then I hit a plateau and couldn't lose any more weight.

In hindsight, I think some of it had to do with my portion control. I would eat as much as I wanted, stuffing myself, so long as it didn't have carbs. But, I'm sure I was taking in 2,000 calories, if not more, with those habits.

So, now, I am interested in counting calories. The other pet peeve I have about a low-carb diet, is I found myself eating a lot of processed, fake sugar foods. Don't get me wrong, I still love and will always love my Splenda, but I was not eating much "living" foods.

Friday I gave my kitchen a makeover. I bought snacks in 100-calorie packs to start teaching myself about portion control. I bought fresh fruits and veggies. I fell in love with Naked's Green Machine -- tons of fruits and veggies in one smoothie-type drink. I'm also keeping a food diary and counting calories throughout the day. It's been rough. I keep eating smaller portions and finding myself ravenous afterwards. My 100 calorie Pringles had like 7 chips in there. Ahh!!!!!

My trick so far? Drinking water or Crystal Light until I feel full. Even still, I've been so hungry this past weekend. When will this get easier??

Friday: 1,370
Saturday: 1,420
Sunday: 1,355 (got in a 5.5-mile run, which burned 712 calories)
Monday: 1,310 (lifted weights for an hour)

My basic metabolic rate (the amount of calories I'd burn if I stayed in bed all day) based on a few calculators is anywhere between 1,400 and 1,700 depending on the website.

Calculator 1
Calculator 2 - also tells you how many calories will lead to fat loss.
Calculator 3  - pick sedentary to see you how much you can eat if you did NOTHING all day.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Me @ 30: Goals for Week 4

Here are my goals for the upcoming week -- (thanks AM for the idea!)

Physical Activity
  • Go to the gym twice
  • Run 3 miles
  • Get outside and play with my son
  • Truly enjoy my week alone with him
  • Allow myself to get lost in his kiddie world a few times
  • Treat him to someplace he really likes (Chuck E. Cheese, maybe?)
Personal Growth
  • Journal at least 4 times
  • Meditate at least once
  • Don't fall behind on my work and studying
  • Work on stress reduction strategies
  • Start working on my list of things that make me happy (see this post by one of my blog pals)
Nice thing for myself
  • Do something off of the happiness list (see above)
  • Limit to 1500 calories a day -OR-
  • Aim for 60 grams of carbs or less
  • Try to eat fruits or veggies every day
  • Drink 8-10 glasses of water a day
  • Unpack and arrange my closet
Fun/"Me" Time
  • Make it to my sailing course this weekend.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Me @ 30: Week 3

Physical Activity
I ran 5.5 miles today... my first physical activity since dance class on 7/20. I've just been so tired between driving to/from Jersey and working that it's been hard to motivate. But, I got a good look at my scale today. I need to get back onto my workout routine!

I haven't been running since early July. I registered for a 10K that's two weeks from today. I know I'm out of shape, but I knew if I didn't put money down and commit to this race, I would never get back into running. In general, I feel like I've been letting myself down and breaking so many (running) promises to myself. Truthfully, running is getting lonely, and I lost my love for it.

I got to watch the kiddo swim at his swimming camp earlier in the week (I love his camp). He couldn't swim a lick before this camp and now he's swimming in 9 feet of water. He really wanted me to watch what he can do, so I went an hour early to pick him up so I could watch. It was fun, especially to see him jump off the diving board! I picked him up today, and I have him 24-7 for a whole week. This should be fun.

Personal Growth
I have been very introspective. I journaled a few days this week. No meditating (sorry). I've come to harsh realizations about my deficiencies, both personal and in my career, and have been working overtime (literally) to remedy those.

Nice thing for myself
Can't think of anything.

Still traveling to/from Connecticut every week, I did eat at McDonald's twice this week, but both times I got a salad, sliced apples and fresh fruit smoothies (an improvement). I was doing great regulating sweets and aiming to stay under 1500 calories a day. But, Thursday night while working overnight, I raided the snack closet and had 12 Oreos and 1 Fig Newton. Terrible, I know. But, one day at a time.

I started keeping a food diary. It is amazing what one can eat in a day. It's also amazing how small "serving sizes" are. When's the last time my overflowing bowl of cereal had only 3/4 cup of cereal in it? Why does my salad dressing have the same amount of calories as my salad? Why was my sizzling chicken and shrimp dinner at Friday's 1200 calories? It's no wonder that we Americans are overweight. Our portions are out of control, and I'm the biggest culprit.
My scale puts me at 140 pounds today (yes, I gained 5 pounds since Cancun -- 3 weeks ago), and I've lost a lot of muscle in the last 2 months, so it's actually more than 5 pounds.

No moves in the unpacking department.

Fun/"Me" Time
The girls and I went to see Eat, Pray, Love and had brunch afterwards to unload our thoughts.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Me @ 30: Eat, Pray, Love

Three girlfriends and I met up in Jersey to watch "Eat, Pray, Love," a book we all read (or, in my case listened on audiobook while I ran). The movie was great. It was interesting to compare the movie scenes with the images I imagined while listening to Elizabeth Gilbert read about her experiences. We finished the day off with dinner at Bertucci's and dancing in a Jersey nightclub.
The movie put me into a state of deep reflection though, making me long the freedom she had, traveling to those three places, becoming more spiritual and in tune with herself along the way. I've been nonstop since I was 5 years old. I was a student from age 5 to age 26. Since age 27, I've been a resident physician. In between, I held a part-time or full-time job since I was 13 years old. I took time off from medical school and got another degree full-time (my master's in journalism) while working full-time for an OB-gyn. While a student, I worked in news, I got married, had a son, wrote a book.. and now I'm on the brink of finishing residency and looking for a new job. But, I'm feeling like I want to get off of the treadmill at some point.

So, I've been deep in thought lately, trying to figure out how to allow such freedom, and still pay my bills and my school loans. I haven't found a solution yet, but I'm searching.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Me @ 30: Registered for my first 10K

Yea... so I ignored the fact that I haven't run more than once a week since May, and registered for a 10K which takes place in *gasp* two weeks. I know, I know, but a girl's gotta have a dream, right?

So, it's back on a training schedule:

Week 1 5.5 + 3 = 8.5 miles
Week 2 3 + 4 + 2  = 9 miles

I'm not planning on breaking any records there. I'm probably going to aim for an 11-12 minute/mile pace. My usual pace is low 9's anyway and but there's no way I'm keeping that up for 6.2 miles.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Me @ 30: Riding the Mechanical Bull

For my pal's bday -- Style Scrybe of Shoes N Booze -- on Saturday, she decided to ride the mechanical bull and (lightly) twisted my arm to do the same.

It was an adrenaline rush. I stayed on for a while, but honestly, I realized it was never going to end and sorta let myself fall off. My inner thighs are still aching. Does that count as a workout??

Me caught in mid-blink with the birthday gal:

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The First Ten Days of 30

30 started out with a sense of calm.

But, upon returning to CT last Wednesday, I was met with much drama and stress. I did, however, catch up on most of my to-do's by the weekend, with my list shrinking from 2-3 pages to a half-page.

Following in the footsteps of one of my blog buddies, AM’s blog, Goals for the Week, here are the things I wanted to work on this week. Some I scored well on, others I flunked.

Physical Activity
I danced for a couple of hours on the night of my birthday. None since.

Continuing to improve. I brought the kiddo to camp last Tuesday morning and put him to bed Tuesday night before going back to CT on Wednesday morning. Then, I came back on Saturday and spent the weekend with him, being there when he lost his first tooth!
Personal Growth
I meditated for a whole five uninterrupted minutes last Friday, in an effort to keep my utter disorganization and overwhelmed feelings from making me bawl my eyes out.

Nice thing for myself
I bought myself a (real) fruit smoothie from McDonald’s on Saturday.

Speaking of McDonalds, I have been terrible in the food department. I ate out at both McDonald’s and White Castle. I ate pastries and ice cream. I had two types of carrot cake today - one slice of cake and the other, I cupcake. Not to mention the gelato earlier in the day. Some of it is because I haven’t even unpacked my apartment in CT (including my kitchen), and I have been spending most of my days in NJ, hence the eating on the run.

I just made a dent in the disorganization, but still haven’t unpacked most of the apartment. My trunk is still full to the top (and I have a truck) with stuff I haven’t bothered to bring into the new place yet. Plus, there's junk that had been inside my car that I threw back there in order to get my car detailed on my birthday.

Fun/"Me" Time
I carved out a few hours and finally watched Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 and Madea Goes To Jail (thanks Netflix!) while I chilled out on my couch in CT. It felt good to sit still for once.

I managed to dress up, do my hair with or without makeup almost every day in the past week and a half. I'm a firm believer of Look Good, Feel Good but it's hard to keep it up sometimes, especially when life gets hectic.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Year In Review (Jan until July 2010)

Since starting this blog and picking up running as a hobby, I have:

- gone from being able to run 1 minute without getting winded to running three 5K's (link, link and link)
- run a total of 136 miles (my best month was February at 39 miles)
- run a total of 30 hours
- burned off the equivalent of 107 donuts (thanks dailymile.com for that statistic)
- gotten my fastest pace down to 9:08/mile
- run 4.07 miles (my farthest run)
- turned 30 (why 30 is so important)
- lost 17 pounds
- done something special for myself on each of the 25 days leading up to my 30th birthday
- started dancing again (ballet and tap)
- learned valuable life lessons, included greater insight into myself and those around me

Then: Now:

What I didn't do (yet):
- Run a 10K or a half-marathon
- Get back down to my pre-baby weight

But, the year isn't up. It's only the beginning. My birthday marked the true beginning of my "year." Join me on the journey that is to come over the next 12 months.