Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving, the wagon, and stir fry

I have recovered from Thanksgiving. I spent 4 days off plan eating turkey and ham and leftovers of both and cream pie. I DID watch portion control until a bit of wine overload on Saturday night. But I made the decision to enjoy my holiday and holiday weekend and I did.

But today is a new day and I did it up right. I am back on plan and back in boot camp after my foot kept me out most of last week. My boot camp trainer also motivated me to try a new veggie medley based on something she had made and I wanted to share it with you b/c it turned out WONDERFUL!

1T olive oil (ish)
1/2 onion, chopped
tons of fresh garlic, minced or chopped
1/2 head of rad cabbage (or green, if you prefer), diced into strips
1/2 bunch of kale, chopped into large pieces
1/2 bunch of red chard, chopped into large pieces
one small head of broccoli, cut into pieces
1 yellow squash, chopped
1 gray squash, chopped (or regular zucchini)
1/2 bunch spinach
1/2 bunch Italian parsley
Seasonings to taste
Apple cider vinegar to taste

1. heat oil in a large skillet or wok on medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until soft.
2. Add broccoli and stir fry, 2 minutes. Add seasonings to taste: I used salt, pepper, oregano, Italian Seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder and Mrs Dash.
3. Add squash, kale, cabbage and chard. Stir fry, covered, about 4 minutes, until leaves reduce.
4. Add spinach and parsley, cook a few minutes until spinach reduces down, another 1-2 minutes, stirring regularly.
5. remove from heat. Add apple cider vinegar to taste in individual servings.

If I could post a picture of my deliciousness, I would. It is on my facebook. It was such a wonderful experience as I had never had kale, chard or gray squash before. I LOVE trying new dishes! I paired this with a weight watchers recipe, Turkey Shepard's pie with mashed sweet potatoes, which was seriously amazing. Love good food and feeding my body all sorts of power food goodness!

On the activity note, this week includes zumba, yin yoga and hoola hooping on top for my normal 4 day a week boot camp work out. Can't wait! Just hope my foot holds up. :)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lessons from the sleep deprived

I have been learning a lot lately. Some of it is new stuff... some of it is stuff I have learned before but am trying to learn again. I'm really focused on my food and exercise plan right now. But I will tell you a lesson I learned this weekend... all of that focus is easy to toss aside when I'm tired or stressed.

"yeah yeah yeah... common sense" you may say to me. Well, perhaps, in theory, but the thing with me is that I don't often feel stress IN the moment. It's kind of cumulative and I feel it more after a stressful situation has subsided or rather, in hindsight, I realize that stress manifested itself other than in an emotion titled "stress" such as unplanned eating, over eating, etc. etc.

On Thursday, I had an unusually stressful evening in the calm and happiness that is mostly my world and I didn't sleep more than a few hours. Which means I skipped boot camp in exchange for a couple more hours of poor sleep. I had friends over on Friday and although I did PRETTY well on my food choices, I had an apple turnover and about 6 glasses of wine I hadn't planned on and didn't need.

So I go into Saturday still tired and now hungover. I sleep as late as I can but never feel fully myself. I spend the day on the couch until I finally do an hour of working out at home. That night I have a birthday party, dinner with friends, drinks with more friends and a midnight showing of HUMP at Cinema 21. I had food planned out for the night ... but I neglected to consider I'd be hungry when I got to the birthday party, where I planned on eating only veggies. Of which there were none. But what was there instead was Hawaiian food. One of my favorites. Rice. Macaroni salad. Chicken. I eat an entire meal. Plus a small spoonful of seconds. And a ginger-ale. That was not planned. Or necessary. As I learned recently, hunger won't kill me and I very well could have waited until dinner to split my planned hamburger with Special K.

But instead, I started to feel guilty and disappointed in myself. Without much thought other than those two emotions, I had 4 unplanned chicken wings, a handful of bites of the most rich clam chowder I've ever eaten AND the half of burger. And what's worse is that the burger was awful and I was completely unsatisfied. AND I was full before the burger even came and yet I continued to eat it. I ignored my plans and all my body signals. What the hell?

Oh. and I forgot to mention the cup or so of buttered popcorn I had at the movie. Also not planned.

Sunday I ate within my points, but as I reflect today I can clearly see what led up to this. As much as I think it is "unfair" that I'm not a "normal" person, the truth is, I'm not a normal person. And until this becomes easier (b/c it's SO not easy), I have to plan my meals, both at home and away from home and I need to follow the plan. There isn't a whole lot of room for spontaneous eating right now because, as one can see, it leads to more. and more. and then I feel badly, both emotionally and physically. I feel like I'm sabotaging my progress toward the goals I have. And it's not been worth it. I deserve to treat myself better than this despite how much work I have to put in to paying attention to these things.

So the lesson here? Get enough rest. Allow myself to feel stressed out or ask myself, in situations that are clearly stressful, if I'm participating in emotional eating. Oh. I reiterate the get enough rest. At all costs. It's hugely important. And... get back on the horse, even if I'm tempted to just let the damn thing keep dragging me through the mud. One meal, one night, one day... doesn't mean another minute needs to go by before I get back on plan.

Monday, November 8, 2010

This, that and the other

I am FINALLY feeling like I'm in the swing of my weight watchers plan. I have been cooking up a storm, I'm finally feeling less hungry, I'm back in boot camp so I'm feeling awesome most of the time anyway, etc. etc. I've been really good about tracking my food and making better choices. It's a long road to lifestyle changes and Lord knows I've been here before. But just like my friend once said "every relationship fails until one doesn't"... I suspect the same can be said about many things such as this. "every diet fails until one doesn't."

I ate a lot of cheese the last two weekends. I do so well during the week and then I spend time with Special K and we just love to munch! I have been better about not feeling like I have to eat every time he eats, but his love of cheese makes me want to indulge in MY love of cheese. Luckily, while I used every last spare point I had for WW this weekend, I only used a few activity points and didn't go in the red. Which is a huge success for me. I know this may sound like alien language, but I'm speaking in WW (weight watcher) terms which it seems most people know.

I haven't really noticed that I've lost weight or my clothes fit differently and it's gotten me a little down, but I realized two things today. 1. I feel AMAZING! I feel happy and confident and like the best of myself. And 2. I worked out and drank a ton of water and ate RELATIVELY well before now. So when I compare myself to people who are getting more noticeable results than me, I try to remember that being whole foods and exercise oriented was already part of my lifestyle so it may take longer for my body to adjust to the smaller portions and overall better nutrition than it might for someone else who didn't drink a lot of water or who didn't exercise or whatever differently than I. It's really unfair to me to compare myself to anyone. I have my own challenges and my body will do what it will as long as I continue to love it the best I can by moving and eating in a purposeful and intentional way. Which I intend to do.

Have a wonderful week, everyone!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


I'm hungry.

No really. I am. Like, gnawing on my arm, hungry.

Ok, no, I'm ok, really. But interesting thing.... I'm reading this book called The Beck Diet Solution... it has daily exercises to "think like a thin person" I committed to following it the best I can. Today was the first day that was really hard... dealing with tolerating hunger. The exercise was to skip lunch and not eat again until dinner and to rate my level of hunger, but most importantly, psychological discomfort. The exercise is not meant to deprive me, but rather for me to conquer my "fear" of hunger by facing it head on. Like Beck says, hunger is not an emergency. It can be tolerated (pending one doesn't have a medical condition necessitating regular meals).

And I've learned today, that this is indeed, true. However, one major flaw of the book is that it doesn't tell you what to do when you are feeling that distress and discomfort. Feelings of hunger do wax and wane whether you feed the hunger or not. Which I can handle. But the emotion behind it is tricky. When one is feeling an emotion as an outcome of feeling very hungry, then what? Yes... then what?

Good news is, I did skip my meal and it's been 7 hours since I've eaten and I'm proud of myself for controlling the urge to eat when I committed to not eating lunch just for today. I wasn't as emotionally distressed as I thought I would be, but I was also working and distracted. If I'd done this on a Saturday, I'd probably have all sorts of shit coming up and would break under the self-induced pressure of it all.

The truth is, us fat folks don't like feeling hungry. It bothers us. I get so proud of myself when I "eat when I'm hungry" but neglect to notice that I don't always HAVE to eat when I'm hungry if I happen to be hungry all day long for some reason (and those days too happen). I won't die if I have to wait an hour to eat for some reason. Nothing bad will happen to me. The worst thing, to me, is that I have the propensity to then over-eat at my next meal, but perhaps that is more psychological than I give it credit to be. I have a potluck I'm attending tonight and I think I'll be perfectly capable of eating the portions I've pre-planned to have and still feel full and satisfied. I won't need to shovel the entire dish of enchiladas in my mouth to somehow make up for not having had lunch. I'll just be VERY aware that my eyes are bigger than my stomach and start small. If I'm still hungry after my meal, then I can cross that bridge when I get to it.

Very challenging exercise today, this hunger thing. But amazingly enough, I didn't die or wither away or ... gnaw off my own arm. All good things to know. :)