Tag Archives: misc

a new member of my home

Let’s talk about mangoes for a second.

I love mangoes. They are hands-down one of my favourite fruit. But what I sometimes forget, in my yearning for mango, is that I like champagne mangoes. The big old run of the mill ones you tend to find in grocery stores? Not actually my kind of mango. They frustrate me. Their seeds are huge. The flesh clings to the seed and gets stuck in my teeth.

So breakfast wasn’t very satisfying, even with the side of bacon to offset the frustration.

Lunch was much better. I made a “BLT plus chicken” salad. Very savoury and tasty!

I had intended to make dinner at home, but we had a lot to do in the afternoon and I never quite ended up making it to the grocery store. So we went to a pupuseria, where I had a taco and a chicarron pupusa.

Lengua!

One of the things that ate up my afternoon was the purchase of an exercise bike! We’re on a fairly limited budget right now, what with me being unemployed and all, so instead of going my usual route and buying a brand new one, I took a chance on a used BRF 700 bike from Craigslist. The reviews seem generally positive and this allows me more exercise than just “cleaning, light” so I’m excited to give it a whirl today!

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just checking in

I’m still here (how many times have i begun a post with that?!) and trucking along. I’ve been really enjoying paleo – I’m not 100% on it, but I’ve been using it as a guideline when making dietary choices and I feel pretty damn good. Fresh, energetic, and lots more veggies in me! I find that I have pretty significant blood sugar spikes (and subsequent crashes) when I fudge on the diet and have bread products during the day, so it’s a pretty good incentive to not throw some extra wheat products in there.

A NSV I decided to share – I have to dress up for work this week, and only had the pants I wore at my last job. They are literally falling off of me! I spent yesterday walking around, holding them up with one hand, and today on my lunch went and bought a new pair of pants. The old pants were 12s; the new ones are 10s. 🙂

Until next time!

is this thing on?

Looks like my last post was the ill-fated 30 days of food, wherein I was unfortunately forced to conclude that as soon as I am at work, my best plans to take pictures of everything I eat get foiled. I’ve been tempted, lately, to ease back into a dinner-only shot, as I’ve been bringing Lean Pockets and soup for meals at work (and god knows that would make for a boring parade of pictures!) … it’s something I’m toying with. I need some accountability though as tightening up some areas of my diet (actual food caloric intake) has been fine while other, more crucial areas (alcohol, late night snacking) have continued unchecked.

Some positive steps I have taken:

– Stopped drinking hard alcohol completely. Instead of actual shots, I take “shots” of wine which equal out to about a cup and a half over the course of the night
– Learned to drink black coffee. Artificial sweeteners concern me, particularly when considering how many diet drinks I was drinking for caffeine throughout the day, but every time I tried to switch to coffee, I found myself wasting calories on creamer and sugar. I’m finally able to drink it black and save myself sweeteners and calories in the process.

And not a step I have “taken” but I’ve found myself much more tolerant to cheese, which allows for things like “eating Lean Pockets for breakfast.”

It’s been a rough couple of months though, emotionally, and I’ve been teetering around 147 despite my (admittedly half-assed) efforts. I’m pondering a membership at the community center, which has an excellent gym, but in the mean time I have some goals I’d like to work on for myself. These include:

– Switching to NA beer. I don’t actually get drunk anymore, off of two beers and some shots of wine per night, but wasting 200 calories on a high percentage beer is ridiculous when I’m trying to lose weight. I think starting with NA and keeping the wine in is a good first step to tapering off completely.
– DOING TURBO JAM. After a month of moving and not exercising, I got on our elliptical and it immediately broke. I’m going to try to fix it myself, but barring that, I need to get moving again and Turbo Jam is the quickest and easiest way to do that. I haven’t ventured into some of the 40 minute exercises and I really should. Finding some other programs to alternate with would probably be a good idea.
– Continuing to bring low calorie meals to work. That’s simple enough!

I’ll check in tomorrow with a weigh-in and we’ll go from there …

a day without breakfast

… is supposed to be some cardinal sin. And normally I can’t really function without some sort of calories at least partway through the morning, but today, for the first time in months (maybe even over a year), I slept in until 10:30. And then, when I woke up, I read for 45 minutes before finally breaking out the sugar free energy drinks. And then after I consumed that, I figured it was time for breakfast, only to find that it was time for lunch! So I had no breakfast today, and from a calorie standpoint, started myself off ahead.

For lunch, I had 1 tbsp of Smart Balance Light on the outside of a chicken breast and Daiya jalapeno havarti melt. It was tasty and luxurious, and I even used two full pieces of bread.

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For dinner, we went to Baja Fresh … I got a chicken Baja Burrito with no cheese, but couldn’t find anything online that told me what the calories would be without cheese, so I just counted the whole burrito. I didn’t count the two sips of full sugar Sprite I had, so it probably evened out …

I did two sessions of elliptical today, estimated 1000 calories burned, so it’s no surprise that I was feeling a bit snacky tonight. I had a Kashi chocolate almond butter cookie – it was okay. Counting that and a NA beer, I’m 600 calories under for the day and will leave it at that. 🙂

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Tomorrow, I’m going to try my hand at making beef and barley soup!

Oh – and as a side note, I skipped the last two days of entries. The first day, I counted calories but didn’t work out, and came in 29 calories over my goal. The second day, I tried out as a “cheat day” (as touted by the inventor of the slow carb diet) and had lengua tacos and soup for lunch, and two pieces of chicken bacon cheeseless pizza for dinner. I felt terrible afterwards. 😦 My stomach was horrified for most of the day, and I’ll probably tone back any other cheat days I attempt to take.

finding a balance

Ah, yesterday. Not the greatest day, eats-wise. I started off strong with an egg white wheat sourdough sandwich:

I was in the midst of month-end craziness at 11:30 and wanted food but didn’t have time to take lunch yet, so I had less than 8 ounces of the pumpkin jalapeno soup.

It was all downhill from there. I had my usual tub of fruit with lunch, but I ordered a sandwich I hadn’t had before from Whole Foods. It was supposed to come with sundried tomato aioli, but instead it was actually dripping with sundried tomato aioli. Since it cost me $7.99, I ate the whole thing, which was a stupid choice, in retrospect. I didn’t get pictures, but I’m clocking it in at 15 points because I’m not about to kid myself and act like it wouldn’t have earned itself some serious points with all that aioli.

Of course, I was stuffed (and parched!) for the rest of the evening. R wanted to go out to dinner, so we went to Sushi Land. I figured it would be a good choice because I could spend a couple bucks and get a controlled amount of food, and that’s how it worked out – I ate two pieces of sashimi (off of nigiri, but j ate the rice) for 1 point, three pieces of salmon skin roll for 3 points, and three pieces of shrimp tempura roll for 5 points. I could eat salmon skin rolls for days, so it’s nice to know that they’re relatively lower points!

Then … evening. R had picked out several beers, and I found myself wavering. Not because I doubted I could sleep – I was exhausted – but inevitably I forget about all the … not tics, I know that’s not the right term … the stress-induced behaviours that start popping up when I don’t get a chance to relax and shut down my anxiety for a bit. I talked it out with R, who suggested that I go about drinking a different way – instead of drinking nightly to sleep, drink occasionally for stress-relief. I had two shots over two hours, and about 8 ounces of beer, and was just fine. I’ll be counting those points, of course, and will be back to my tea-and-heater routine tonight, but I’ll admit that I’m trying to find a healthy balance between “drinking every night” and “teetotaller.” I’ve spent my whole life living out behavioural extremes and it might be time to prove to myself that I can be moderate at something.

In any case, off to work, and planning for some better choices today!

what did i say …

“The internet is littered with the remains of food blogs that I’ve started and stopped, ignored and forgotten.”

Truth. This one was well on its way of becoming that – I gave up, basically, slipped back into my usual habits as a matter of convenience. Oh, my phone stopped uploading the pictures into an accessible format on Picasa. Oh, I got a job (yay!!) and its in a rather posh area so my cheap food options are burritos the size of an infant. Oh, because of that job and its accompanying commute, I don’t have time to exercise.

Lots of excuses. Lots of excuses that rolled me over into the highest weight I’ve been since I was pregnant – 155.0. Um. I started back up on WW two weeks ago. First week – lost 2 pounds. Second week – lost .4 pounds. Third week – gained every last pound back by not following the program to the T. That’s this morning, the start of week 4, that I decided to rev back up Accountabiliblog, because damn, I was doing pretty well when I was fastidiously documenting everything I did and ate.

My biggest problem – I know it, I’ve alluded to it if not outright said it – is that I’ve got insomnia, yes … and I’ve relied on alcohol to keep myself to a regular schedule. While effective, I hate it. I hate feeling like a substance is a key part of a regular function of my life. I hate knowing that I waste a huge portion of calories/points on alcohol.

And so I decided (again, more, part two) to quit drinking. I honestly almost didn’t post about it because failure (again, more, part two) will be embarrassing but again, I’m hoping that accountability will help me succeed where I’ve failed before.

And, since it has actually taken me 12 hours to write this, I suppose I will continue on with today’s eats.

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Breakfast was protein-heavy, as best sustains me through the day. Two servings of spicy chicken sausage (two points per serving) and an egg (two points).

And no sugar added applesauce for a snack.

For lunch, I had oven-roasted chicken thigh over cauliflower mashed “potatoes” and roasted peas/broccoli.

I had a serving of jalapeno potato chips (a waste of four points! D:):

And dinner was a mashup of two Trader Joe’s salads for a whopping 6 points, rounded up.

I still have 13 points left in the day, so maybe a pre-bed snack is in order? Hmm …

still here, still trucking

Gonna throw a short entry in here. I’m still around! I dropped out of the slow carb diet. I really enjoyed that I was always full, but I didn’t enjoy how dang expensive it was – yeah, the original author likes to insist that it’s affordable, and maybe as a single person on a very strict version of it it might be, but as one member in a household of 4, I was spending a huge amount of money between “food for me” and “food for everyone else.” 

I also wasn’t seeing the results I wanted. Yeah, the author says that it may takes up to 4 weeks for women to start seeing results, but other than reliably losing the “cheat weight” within a couple of days, my weight didn’t move <I>at all</I>. Maybe if I incorporated a more structured and intense workout routine? Who knows. I’m sure I’ll end up trying it again, but at this point in time … no thanks.

I am, however, still counting calories, and have pretty consistently adopted R’s pretty thorough workout routine – C25K every day, weight lifting every other day (i’m still only bench-pressing our 25 pound bar … yeah, i’m that weak!), working out on the Health Walker every day for 45 minutes, and, notably, abdominal workouts.

The abdominal workouts are notable because, prior to a week ago, <I>I had never done a sit up in my life</I>. In school, if we said we couldn’t, we were allowed to do crunches instead, and I would mess up my neck pulling my head up to emulate a crunch without actually doing one. When I laid down on the floor, with R on my knees, to do my first sit up, I laughed and actually had to ask him which muscles I would use to do one. I did 6 my first try. 11 my second. Now I’m up to 20 and the first 10 are a breeze. I actually woke up today and couldn’t go back to sleep because I was excited about doing sit ups. I’m also up to 50 “real” (as opposed to the crunches mentioned above) crunches, 25 a set. 

Of course, as it is said, if you don’t lose the fat then you’ll just have really strong abs under your spare tire, but I’m heartened by this measurable progress and hopefully my financial situation will improve enough over the next month or two that I can buy an elliptical and get back to burning 700 calories in a sitting.

Anyway, that’s where I’m at! 

i love fad diets

I do. It’s terrible, and I know that many of them are total crap (anyone ever try the special k diet? yeah, i don’t recommend it) but I am inevitably tempted by the thought of a quick “fix.”

A friend on Facebook asked if anyone else was doing the Slow-Carb 4 Hour Body diet. “No,” I said, “but it sounds like I should be!” I’ve been unsuccessfully trying to wean myself off of my high (bread) carb diet for several weeks now, and after looking up the Slow Carb diet, I figured it was worth a shot.

I started it today, which may not be the most prudent choice, given that Thanksgiving is on Thursday and my cheat day is supposed to be Saturday. I’m still weighing out my choices there, figuring out whether I’ll just eat a ton of turkey and a salad or if I’ll let myself indulge. I also took pictures all day, but have just discovered the my phone is no longer autouploading them to Picasa. So that will take some investigation.

In any case, I hope to be back, chronicling at least my attempts at losing weight. I’m hoping that having a more nutrient-focused, regimented low carb diet will allow me to reduce my dependence upon them as a staple to every meal.

reaching out is hard to do

As several of you know, I’ve been going through a rough patch in my life. At first faced with the concept of being homeless in December, it quickly turned “homeless in October and car repossessed any time between now and then.” Many of my friends were generous enough to offer what help they could, and for that, I am deeply thankful. I am also deeply thankful for the words of support offered to me – as my own harshest critic, even a “hang in there!” helps offset the burden of guilt I have placed on myself for not, somehow, seeing this situation coming … and by that logic, failing myself and my family.

I took a week off. Well, a week and a half. This morning, for the first time since I announced my hiatus, I went running – 1.2 miles in 11 minutes flat. It felt good to get out and moving, for my immediate problems to be “well crap, going uphill sure is a lot harder than going downhill!” (though I suppose that could also be used as a metaphor for my life). I am going to try to ease back into returning. Perhaps continuing Operation: Just Run and bringing back the daily pictures when I am truly able to devote that much concern to chronicling my diet.

In the meantime, I will share that my financial troubles have placed me back to a place I haven’t visited since the first time I was homeless (yeah, seriously): panhandling. Each evening or weekend that I am not otherwise occupied (with school, work, commuting, or watching my kids), I stand out by a stop light and hold a sign:

This is more successful at some times than it is at others, but as my current position pays minimum wage, it is always more financially successful than working my job. Is it enough to pay my bills? No. It’s enough to gas me to school and back, to gas R to school and back, and to continue us on our quest for an education that will finally earn our family the financial stability we crave. A friend suggested that I create a PayPal button, and though asking for Internet handouts (or e-panhandling) is not something that I ever thought I would find myself doing, I have had to come to the conclusion that my pride is not worth putting my family’s future in jeopardy – something that should be obvious, but hey, pride is a tricky thing.

So for those that read casually, or those that follow and are not otherwise aware of what I’ve been going through, or for those who stumble upon this through search terms of one kind or another, I ask that you consider donating to my informally-dubbed nonprofit, “Fight [my] homelessness.

I’ll see you all at the next exercise. 🙂

i know

I know, it’s been a couple of days. I’ve been having an extraordinarily rough couple of days, and while it doesn’t promise to let up any time soon, I endeavour to get back and up to my usual shenanigans soon. For those that follow – thank you for your acknowledgment, and I will be returning soon. ❤