Status update: Exercise, Weight, Food and Sleep

Summer is almost here and it’s time to evaluate my status.

Why is logging exercise so much easier than logging food?

I only went spinning once (May 4) in the last 6 weeks, but lately I’ve been back in the biking groove and have logged 99 miles in the last 2 weeks:
May 31 – 23 miles
June 2 – 5 miles
June 3 – 20 miles
June 5 – 6 miles
June 6 – 24.1 miles
June 9 – 20.5 miles

I’m training right now for the MS150 mile bike ride the beginning of August, so I’m biking a lot. My plan is to just keep running a little in order to keep that part going so I’m ready for training  for the Akron Relay as soon as I’m done with the MS ride.

My running/jogging/walking  in May:

  • May 2 – 2 miles
  • May 5 – 3.5
  • May 8- 2
  • May 9 – 2
  • May 13 -2
  • May 15 -2
  • May 19 – 2
  • May 21 – 4
  • May 22 – 3
  • May 27 – 1.4
  • Total for May 23.5

The 23.5 miles is not bad, for just maintaining a few miles. Most of the miles are super slow with the dogs. At around a 14 minute pace. More of a jog than a run! For June, I am going to go for another 25 miles total. Maybe a bit more than that. And hopefully at a 13 minute pace or a bit more.  Maybe run and THEN walk the dogs. Somehow I think I can run with the dogs, but they interfer with my shoulders and my left one has been hurting lately. That’s probably why! I fell skiing in Jan 2015 and it healed after about 2 months, but the past month it’s hurt. I bet that is why!

June (so far)

  • June 7 – 2.4 miles slow but with no dogs to blame my slowness on!

I’m not focusing on running right now because I’ll hit that hard in August. But I think I should probably plan on running 3 or so miles each time so that it won’t be a big adjustment when i start running 4 miles in August and then 6 a few times in September. I just want to maintain that I can run, not build the miles or the speed right now. If I get around 30 to 35 miles running in June, I’ll be very happy.

Meanwhile I have been hovering at the 159 and 160 lbs – back and forth on the scale. Not where I want to be, but it is better than it had been. Too much of this year has been well above 160. Especially when a year and a half ago I was hovering 149 and 150… That was before I got hurt and took 2 months off from the HIIT intense boot camp type workouts I was doing 3 days a week.

June 2015 to June 2016

I downloaded a new app on my phone that is a weight averaging app. If I had to eyeball the past year, I’d say my weight was more in the 158 average… but if I look at just March thru June, it’s definitely OVER 160. It’s weird how it creeps up so easy. I did really well weighing in almost every day.

What else is weird is that two of the 3 times in 2016 I got down to 156 were both from vacations! (Jan 12-19 and March 5-12.) I find it so much easier to keep the weight off when I’m not sitting at a desk! Not so much even the activity, but when I do stand up from the desk, I find I go to the kitchen! Perfect transition into food:

I have been trying to do whole30 – at least not eating anything that came out of a package for the past 2 weeks (actually 16 days, but who is counting!) Been working on this the past 2-3 weeks and when I look at the chart, I think it is actually working.

I really like this pinto bean recipe that I have with tomatoes, celery, carrots, avocados. The dressing is lemon, olive oil and cider vinegar… so it’s good. The only ww point things are pinto beans and avocados. It is good for maintaining if I don’t eat too much of it.

Lots of egg white omlets with spinach and mushrooms with a whole egg dropped into the middle of the egg whites. No bread. Granny smith apples with Almond butter. Yum. best. snack. ever. When I go out to eat: salad with chicken, ranch on the side. I have had one beer and one glass of wine in the last 3 weeks. Tried to do a taco recipe but too much sodium or something. Mexican doesn’t work for me. Chicken in the crock pot. With veggies. Awesome. Roasted veggies. Always good. Mozzarella cheese – snuck it in there, probably should have skipped it.  Tuna over chopped veggies – A winner. Tuna over quinoa – Okay.

As far as tracking food. Boo. Really bad. Like D- or F.

Why do I find it so hard to track beyond lunch? Breakfast. Easy. Lunch and snack? a struggle but I write it down. But after 3 pm you’d think I never heard of the concept of tracking. Mental block.

Not very good. I’m trying to not buy the favored waters because of the whole 30 and artificial flavoring. Plus the ones I like are 75 cents each. For water! And I like to drink 2 a day. What a bad thing with the plastic recycling too. SO I have stopped buying them and stopped drinking water like I should. Tap water doesn’t do it for me. And putting fruit in the tap water in the fridge? Well the last pitcher sat there for more than a month and the fruit got really really water logged. Not the right answer for me. Maybe I’ll just buy the artificial water this week and see how things go.

Mediocre. Go to bed early enough, but still getting up way to early. Probably on 5 good hours and 2 or 3 toss and turn hours.

Maybe I’ll try going to be a little later to see if I sleep more soundly. It’s just my very best sleep is the first 5 hours.

Goals for this month:

  • Track all 5 elements: I’m great at tracking exercise and weight.
  • Exercise: Keep up the lots of miles on biking 2 or 3 times a week. Maintain with a run once or twice a week, short and slow miles.
  • Weight – drop a few pounds (2 would be great!) Today’s weight: 160.6
  • Water – drink it! come on, that’s the easiest goal to make the one you really slipped up this past month!
  • Food -Keep going on Whole30 but TRACK the food. Not just breakfast and lunch, but water and dinner.
  • Sleep – keep working on it. Less screens. Less caffeine. More meditation. More relaxation.



Homemade Pasta Recipe

I tried to make homemade Pasta a few times, but lost the recipe.

Here’s one with directions and photos.

Basically 3.5 cups flour, 4 eggs, 1/2 teas olive oil, dash salt with a tiny bit of water (2-3 T water) should be sticky, not dry and clumpy.

Mix by hand 30 seconds. Cut into sections. Make it desired thickness. Let it rest/rise for 20-30 minutes. Either use, or dry on a rack then refridgerate or freeze.

Cook in boiling water just a few minutes

On Track during Thanksgiving

Wow, made it thru the biggest eating holiday of the year… even with stressful family situations that totally get me to emotionally eat.

Here’s the strategies that worked:
1) Tiny portions of protein, veggies and only my very most favorite carbs.
2) tiny seconds of protein and veggies
3) Half a portion of dessert
4) two bottles of flavored water

Non Food:
5) HIIT workout in morning – (155 rate up to 170 ish for an hour, dropping to 130 during the 3 water breaks)
6) Chew gum
7) Made it about the people – talked to each of my sisters individually
8) Took a walk when things got tense
9) Didn’t eat during clean up or prep.

Results for the weigh-in on Friday morning: same as the weigh-in on Wednesday before Thanksgiving.  One month, down six pounds.

Feel really good about how things went. Because I was using all my strategies, I don’t have the anxious, “gotta gotta eat” feeling.

Now on to the next 7 pounds before the end of the year! 35 days! You can do it!




Glute Updated and Avoiding Trigger Foods from a Friend

Today marks the 6th week since I’ve been without the butt pain. While it is MUCH MUCH better, I still don’t dare go back to my much loved T/Th/Sat HIIT workouts. I still have trouble doing 15 squats and the 15 hydrants and worry about doing the lunges.

On Thursday night I rode 15 miles on my bike. Warmed up before hand and did a bit of stretching afterwards. It’s awkward getting on the ground and doing the warm up/stretching afterward. I’ve got to “get over it” because I know that is a key to getting/keeping my glutes working right and not straining the piriformus muscle.

Yesterday was a food struggle. I’m doing the 30 day challenge for May. Did okay early on. Morning of fried eggs, no toast. Fruit at the Panera breakfast (but of course my well intentioned friend had put at least 1/4 cup of sugar on the fruit. For some reason she thinks it’s not sweet enough.

On the way to the office stopped at the grocery store, bought almonds, berries and sweet potato. Ate berries and almonds but forgot the S.W. in the car. So I ate too many almonds, resulting in a gain this morning. You really shouldn’t have them as a MEAL!

But about 3 pm (my worst time of day!) a coworker walks in to wish all of us “HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY”. So nice. But with chocolate. No thanks I say. Oh come on she said. No, really, I’m trying to quit. Oh come on it’s dark chocolate! she says. So I take it. But I’m mad. Between her chocolate and her office mate’s cookies it’s always full of sweets and carbs. I keep bringing in fruit and nuts, but I have a tough time controlling the environment. When I came home, I made gluten free pasta, not too much and ate it with sockaroni sauce. Not too bad, but too much salt and sugar in a prepared sauce. Too tired to cook my own. and I added parmasain cheese. Also not part of the 30 day challenge. So I’m up 1.3 on the scale today.

I ended up taking the chocolate back into the kitchen and out of my office. But I noticed she left a pile of the chocolate in the front conference room about 10 steps in front of me. I think I’ll move them back to the kitchen on Monday.

Otherwise, they will live in my head all day until I unwrap one (then another and another and another) at about 3 pm when my willpower weakens and the sugar / caffeine craving is the strongest.

she doesn’t know my struggle. And I don’t feel like telling her. I’ve tried. She doesn’t listen. She’s just offended I won’t take her gift. Maybe you think I should just take it and then say thankyou. And then when she leaves the room, throw it in the trash. But there is something psychological inside my head about taking it and saying thank you that is accepting it. I have the hardest time accepting a sweet/treat something and then throwing it away. If I don’t take it, it’s not mine. So it’s much easier to give away, throw away or put back. But as soon as I take it and say thank you. UGH!

People sometimes put the cookies and sweets in the freezer. On a really bad day (bad client call and 3 pm and tired with maybe a cold layered on top) I really can’t resist. None of use really “needs” the cookies, but they show up. Maybe in the OLDEN days, donuts/cookies/chocolate were a good gift. But I look at it like a huge trigger food for me. And most of the people who give it to me are not trying to get healthy, watch their weight, overcome this particular hurdle so they look at me like I have 2 heads.

I usually keep a can of tuna packed in water in my desk. Nothing like a bunch of protein to get me thru a tough afternoon.

Any body have good strategies for getting thru the 3 pm witching hour? Or how to not accept the trigger food that will haunt me until I eat it?

Maintaining a Loss While Going Away for the Weekend

Just got back from a delightful weekend skiing in New York state. Stayed at a friend’s house on the lake and skied at two different resorts. Communal eating, eating lodge food, eating at a apres ski restaurant, drinking after skiing.

Got back and weighed in at 153.4. (Major victory) So how did I manage it?

1) brought fruit (berries) and made a fruit salad to add to the bacon and bagels for breakfast.
2) boiled a dozen eggs and brought those. Ate 2 with my mixed fruit breakfast.
3) brought 2 eggs for my lunch in my pocket
4) drank lots of water
5) only had a half of glass of wine, then a quarter, then a quarter… so while I sat around drinking wine all night with everyone, it really was only one complete glass
6) ate only veggies with the hummus. No pita chips, no cheese, no crackers
7) at the lodge made a salad with mixed greens, lots of veggies, no dressing.
8) out to dinner, ordered the salmon on a salad and had her HOLD the dinner roll. (I would have caved on the dinner roll for sure… dinner was at 9 and I was starving!)
10) Didn’t comment much when I was teased about the salad.”Chris, you skied all day, you don’t have to do the lettuce thing.) I just said, I didn’t realize everyone else was getting burgers. (btw, the salmon was small, expensive but very delicious)
11) had a small bag of raw almonds in my pocket to snack on. Could unobtrusively eat about 7 or so on the chair lift to keep my stomach from going crazy when I was feeling hungry.

One of the hardest things for me on a weekend with a bunch of people is the “group decision delay factor”. When I’m hungry, I get gotta eat right now. My messages from the stomach are insistent. If I don’t do something to hold them off, When I finally do get a chance to eat, I inhale and it’s usually bad. ie rolls the waitress brought or chips or other pre-meal foods that are high calorie but low or no nutrients.

Meanwhile, with 8 people discussing where to eat, when to meet, who is riding with who, added logistics…. the meals are delayed 1 to 2 hours. IE appetizers went on for 2-3 hours while someone drove in late from out of state, holding dinner. Dinner the next night was 4 hours after we left the slopes.

So for next time:
– definitely bring fruit (berries, green apples) and protein (eggs/nuts).
– Bring more bottled water.
– Continue to avoid the carbs like the plague.

Also knowing that I had a recorded weigh in to do on Monday morning was definitely making me toe the line.  So being in a program where I record my weight when I go away is crucial.

Working the Plan

Last night went out for a birthday party celebration with my church friends. There were 9 of us. Two cars drove up to Little Italy in Cleveland. Awesome restaurant with award winning Italian food.

So, what to do. Ah HA! I spotted my favorite. Mussels. With vegetables in a clear broth sauce as an appetizer.

So I asked the waitress if she would put those over past as a entree and I paired it with a house salad w dressing on the side. Turns out the dressing was balsalmic so no problem.

One glass of Pino-Gree and I think I got out of there with a great time with friends and a delicious dinner under 600 calories.

Glad mine had veggies in it. And not an alfredo sauce. I skipped the birthday cake too (the slices were big- huge.)

There were 2 other people really watching their weight too. Lots of water, left more than half of their food and got a to go. Ate 3 bites of the cake.

I have a tough time not finishing my food. I finish. Member of the clean plate club.
So I can’t take it to start. Two glasses of water was good too.

And talking/asking questions making it about the people.

So, I ended up with a half pound loss this morning. YEAH!!!