Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Foodie revisited

I said it before. I'll say it again. I. Love. Food.

Mostly, I love all the stuff that's bad for me, but I enjoy salads and fruits & vegetables, too. 

That being said, I was a BAD girl on vacation. Having never visited California before, I wanted to take in as many of the new foods as I could. I knew I'd work it all off either climbing the hills in SF or working out (if I didn't feel I got the exercise I needed during the day).

When I got into San Francisco Friday night, the first thing we did was go to In n' Out (Damn you, Harry Snyder!). Upon the recommendation from one of my followers (ahem, totally calling you out, @MichaelTimmons!), I ordered the #1 with animal-style fries and a chocolate shake. This thing was AMAZING. The burgers are all made fresh, as are the fries. The shake was to die for and I appreciated every artery-clogging bite of my meal. YUM. MY!
That night, Tracy, DawnL and I sat around and had some wine. This wine was the sweetest, most flavorful wine I've ever tasted. (Shameless plug for Fantasia from Castello di Amorosa in Napa.) Again - definitely not on the diet. But oh so good!
On Friday, Tara, Tracy and I headed to the Wharf. We bypassed the Ben & Jerry's shop and the pretzel & cotton candy stand (much to my dismay), but had a delicious dinner at the Pier Market. While I should've probably avoided the creamy chowder, I didn't. I did however avoid the fish and chips (save for a couple small bites Tracy shared with me - that stuff was amazing!). I had the New England clam chowder and a salad instead (and a delicious cocktail). I won't think about the number of empty calories in any of it.
Fortunately, this dietary wrist-slit was counteracted by the miles we walked around at the Wharf and up and down Lombard Street that day. I don't feel too guilty about it. I also didn't buy anything at Ghiradelli Square, so there's that. (Does the single square of chocolate they gave us as a sample count? I don't think so.) 

We joined DawnL later that night for dinner at The Silk Road. I skipped the liquor and had water instead (go me!). They brought us a killer appetizer of flat bread and some Mediterranean salsa thing (balsamic vinegar & olive oil based. Need I say more?).
For dinner, I debated between the ravioli and the lamb shank. Committed to trying new things, I opted for the lamb. I wasn't disappointed. It was DELICIOUS! It was served in a unique tomato sauce, garlic mashed potatoes and steamed veggies. 
Saturday brought me a few handfuls of movie popcorn (shameless plug for MacGruber. Go see it!) and some Sour Patch Kids. It also brought me a corndog late in the afternoon from Dairy Queen (hey, I bypassed the Blizzard. Gimme some credit.) and another late night visit to In n' Out. I skipped the cheese on my double burger and ate my fries with just the special sauce instead of animal-style. Obviously I should've skipped the whole damn place, but I did all right with what I could. We rounded out the night at home with some more wine (Yes, I drank the entire bottle of Moscato while I was there, so sue me).
Sunday, I had lunch with an old classmate and we went to Pasta Pomodoro. I ordered the Conchiglie Gamberi and like everything else this weekend, it wasn't healthy. It was pasta shells with asparagus, tomatoes and shrimp with a cream & shrimp stock sauce. De. Lish.
Sunday night we finished out our weekend with a decandent dinner at Bruno's on Fillmore. The girls opted for cheesy garlic bread, but I chose the calamari at our waiter's suggestion. It was good, but nothing special. The lasagna and salad, though. HOLY COW! Good stuff!!!

What's the point of this (very tempting) blog? The point is, you can be human. You can have a weekend of selfish indulgence. You can "cheat" from time to time. Just don't make a habit of it. I put on 3-4lbs this weekend, but I'll work it back off. I have realistic expectations of myself and I'm willing to deal with the consequences of my actions. A weekend like this will mean more time on the treadmill, but it was worth it. I got to try new things and not worry about the shouldn't do's.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The numbers don't lie

It's easy sometimes when you're as big as I am to look at yourself in the mirror and not see a big difference in progress. Over the last year I've seen my sizes go down, but until just now, I hadn't realized just how much weight/inches I've lost total.

To put it in perspective:

Since last May, I've maintained a 20lb weight loss. I was up to 37lbs down at one point, but slacked off and gained 17lbs back. (NOT happy about this, btw.) I've lost 3" off my bust, 2" off my chest, 6" off my waist and 4" off my hips. My legs are as solid as solid gets, so I've only lost an inch off my thighs and a half inch off my calves. My biceps are becoming more defined, though. I've lost 2" off of those (goodbye fat, hello muscle!). My neck has fluctuated an inch one way or another all year long.

I could very easily complain about those 17lbs gained or the fact that I've plateaued, but instead, I choose to celebrate how far I've come. I still have a long way to go, but I'm confident I will get there. I didn't get to this size overnight and I won't lose it overnight, either. I'm okay with that...even for as frustrated as I get.

People (myself included) put a lot of emphasis on actual pounds lost or gained, but we have to remember that it's not all about pounds. It's inches, too. How do your clothes fit? Do your ankles feel puffy? Can you see your collarbone? One of my first goals last year wasn't to get into a smaller sized dress. It was to be able to buckle the strap on a pair of sexy-ass shoes I'd gotten the year before for my birthday. Sure enough, my first goal met was getting into those shoes. It's not about the weight, girls. It's about overall health & fitness.

I'm kicking ass, I feel good and that's what counts!

Monday, May 17, 2010


So as it stands, I haven't lost a pound since my last weigh-in, a week ago Saturday. Obviously I'm disappointed by this, but I'm gonna stick with this tabata thing for a while. I've got some travel coming up, which will interfere with my workout schedule and diet, so I'm trying to keep an open mind and make sure that I'm giving this new workout the right amount of time to start working. If, after a month, I don't see a difference in weight and/or inches, then I'll reevaluate then.

Until then, as it stands, I'm still hovering at 245.


Friday, May 14, 2010

What a Marshmallow!

My favorite line in "New Moon" is when Jacob calls Mike a "marshmallow." It just makes me giggle.

But he's right. Mike was a marshmallow.

My point?

So am I.

I've been sitting here pity partying about not losing any weight, not dropping any sizes, not losing any inches. Wah, wah, wah. *insert one of my typical eyerolls here*

Here's the thing. I'm pussing out on my workouts. That's the only thing I can come up with. I've been a complete marshmallow and I haven't pushed myself as hard as I can on my workouts. I've been focused on doing X number of reps in an X amount of time. When I get a little winded, I slow down or I cut my reps. When I get sick of drinking water, I switch to herbal tea. When I want a Coke, I have one.

What the hell?

Yeah, cuz that will work well for losing weight.

Starting tomorrow, I'm going to push myself harder, push myself longer, dig deeper for what I know is there. I've lost focus and I can't do that anymore.

I bought a new pair of capris the other day. I went up a size. Screw that noise. I'm not going to get fatter. Period. Ain't happening.

What about you? Are you a marshmallow? Are you pushing yourself hard enough?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Day three on the "new" workout

I did Tabata on Saturday and again Sunday. I wouldn't recommend this because your body needs a day of rest between cardio workouts. I did it because I'd gotten off schedule (I am scheduled to do cardio 3x a week and weights twice a week) and tried to get caught back up. I also wanted to teach @projectdance how to do Tabata because she was interested in spicing up her workout. (She agrees that its the easiest/hardest workout she's ever done. Easiest because it only takes 4 minutes. Hardest because it kicks. your. ass.)

Sunday, I overdid some yardwork and ended up pulling a shoulder muscle and I've been feeling pretty miserable, trying to baby it a little bit until it heals. So today, I took it easy on the shoulder weights, but I did some circuit training as well as 100's and some crunches on the inclined bench. I rounded out my workout with a tan, which is my little mini-reward after every workout.

So far, I'm feeling good about this change in my workout. The Tabata was easier the second day and I suspect it will continue to get better, which is great, but my biggest hope is that it kickstarts my metabolism into gear again. We'll see how it goes!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Ahh, Tabata

Tabata (tah-BAH-tuh) is another type of high intensity interval training. If you've read my other blogs, you know what my typical workouts consist of. Baffled at my metabolic issues, I've been trying to think of things I can do to kick it into gear. When I did some research on HIIT training, Tabata came up. I hadn't heard of it before, so I clicked on a couple links and it intrigued me. I watched a video of someone doing it and was impressed.

The basic gist of Tabata is four minutes of intervals. 20 seconds hard core, 10 seconds rest, repeating 8 times. (It didn't mention it on the sites I read, but I strongly recommend 5 min warm-ups and cool-downs, too). It's very similiar to the HIIT I've been doing, but on a much small, much more intense scale. In this video you can see first-hand that it's not an easy workout. I figured it was worth a shot and might shake up my metabolism a little bit. If today's workout was any indication, I'm right.

I did my 5 min warm up on the treadmill, then switched to the elliptical. I set the resistance at about 15 and pounded it as hard as my legs would go for 20 seconds. I slowed to a walking pace for 10 seconds. By 3 minutes in, I couldn't breathe and my legs burned so bad I wanted to die. But with ONE minute left, I knew I could push through the pain and keep going. With a 15 minute HIIT workout, after 3 minutes, you've still got a lot of reps left and even those twelve minutes can seem like forever, even if it is done at 30 second intervals.

I finished the entire four minutes and stepped off the machine to get the sanitizer and I thought I was gonna collapse. My legs were (and still, two hours later) Jell-O. My heart rate topped out at 177 (not smart, btw. I shouldn't have let it get that high) and it took me 30 minutes to get back to my normal resting heart rate of 75-80.

I feel like I actually did something today rather than just pranced along on the treadmill. I'm hoping this is what my body needs. I'll keep you posted.

Today's weigh-in - 245
We'll see where I'm at this time next week. :)

Friday, May 7, 2010

Basal Metabolic Rate & all that junk

Yesterday, I went to my doctor for my re-exam. (This is a test done every twelve weeks or so to see how my body is holding adjustments and maintaining overall health.) We discussed the whole veggie cleanse thing. He was disappointed that it didn't work as he'd hoped (to kickstart/shock my metabolism into gear). I asked him if it even had enough time to work since I only did a day and a half of it. He said, "Yes, it should've shocked it. But it didn't. And we need to figure out why."

So he did some searching in my chart to see if we'd done a basal metabolic test. This is a test that determines what calorie intake I would need to have to maintain weight by doing nothing more than laying in bed. We did do a BMT in early spring 2008. My rate was 1550-1570. This means, if I'm not doing anything else, I should maintain my weight by taking in 1550-1570 calories a day. I'm *not* taking in that few amount, although I should be. I'm usually roughly between 1700-2000 calories a day. Even so, with the amount of physical activity I'm doing, I should *still* be losing weight, even if slowly and I'm not - I lose 5lbs, I gain 5lbs. This particular BMT was done in 2008, so we're doing another test on the 25th to get a more accurate reading. We'll also do a Ragland's test, to see if my adrenal system is functioning correctly. (You can Google these to find out what they are.)

I asked him how we can get my metabolic rate to go up because I just can't (i.e. "won't") survive on 1500 calories or less. He said to just continue doing what I'm doing by working out. The higher the lean tissue mass I have, the higher that metabolic rate will be. Seems easy enough and makes sense, but he and I are still concerned as to why my metabolism seemed to work fine last summer and now is back to working like this. (Hence the reason we're testing on the 25th.)

Until then, I'm not freaking out. I'm not changing anything. Gonna keep busting ass at the gym and eating healthy. Still drinking hoards of water. Not much else I can do until we know what I'm dealing with. If it turns out that there is a problem with my thyroid or adrenal system, there are supplements I can take and things I can do dietary- and exercise-wise that will help correct it.

Just wanted to give an update for those who were wondering what all the talk was about my basal metabolic rate.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Keep Keepin' On!

Ok, so I started doing 100's today. Those suckers are TOUGH! Up to this point, I'd been doing sit-ups, which were going well, but I didn't feel the burn in my upper abs like I wanted. I was afraid I wasn't working them. I'll sure do it with the 100's!

I was going to start kicking up my reps on HIIT from 6 to 8 this week, but it didn't happen. We'll start that tomorrow. I'm doing better now on the 6's, so that'll help. Might even do more about upping my metab, so yay!

I've been doing well on what I'm eating. I think I've said before, I don't really deny myself cravings. I just limit them. Instead of buying a king-sized candy bar when I'm craving chocolate, I get a small one or a bag of miniatures. I know how much harder it is on the treadmill when I work out, so I don't eat the whole bag like I used to. Same with soda. I have cut soda out of my diet...relatively speaking. But every once in a while, I get a really bad Coke craving, so I indulge. I don't buy a case of soda & drink it in three days like I used to, but I'll buy a 20 oz bottle once in a great while. The last soda I had was a week ago. Before that, it was almost a month. That's BIG for me.

I see a lot of people trying to lose weight right now. Many of my followers are doing it for the NKOTB cruise and/or the summer (non)tour. Some are doing it for health, some are doing it for vanity, some are doing it for swimsuit season, some are doing it to lower stress. Whatever the reason, GOOD FOR YOU!!! It's tough to make changes to your life like this. Any changes you're making are great!

So to those making these changes, KEEP KEEPIN' ON!!!