Sunday, September 21, 2014
I’ve been MIA for a while now, but I’m ready to jump back in to the Spark community! I was sick all last winter and spring with various respiratory illnesses, and learned that I have asthma which just made it that much more fun. At the same time, my DH went back to work (YAAAAY!) and we were coping with a new hectic schedule. I was completely unprepared for the chaos, and we fell into the habit of getting takeout 1-2 times each week. Work has also been absolutely insane, and I started buying lunch out 1-2 times per week just to get out of the office for a few minutes.
Sick, not exercising, eating out, stress, and a new unpredictable routine… I completely undid all of my hard work. All of the progress I made last year… poof!
Now that we’re into a new routine – it’s not any easier, but at least it’s predictable! – DH and I have decided to work together to get back to the way we were eating last year. It’s so much better when we’re on the same page, so we decided that we’re in this together!
So I’m baaaa-aaaack!
My plan is to keep it under 1500 calories per day, except the night before a long run. I’m eliminating simple carbs wherever possible, and eating only very limited whole grains. I’ll be tracking everything I eat once again, because I know that’s the #1 best thing I can do for weight loss.
I’ve planned this week’s meals and shopped accordingly. During my staycation this summer, I stocked our freezer with healthy meals that I can defrost overnight and then cook in 20-3o minutes when I get home, and I will use 1-2 of those meals each week on those nights we typically get home late. I also scoured my extensive cookbook collection for new recipes to try on my earlier nights, because it’s always fun to experiment in the kitchen!
I will continue to make my lunches for the week on Sunday, as I’ve had the most success with that. I will not let myself buy lunch anymore, unless there’s some kind of emergency.
I’m currently in training for an upcoming ½ marathon or two, so my workouts will include lots of running, plus other cardio, yoga, and strength training on off days.
I’m going to use this blog to keep me accountable, posting about my workouts and the healthy meals I’m preparing. Expect to see lots posts from me in the coming weeks!
I’ll start with this week’s breakfast/lunch plan. I have a mini fridge in my office, so I bring everything in on Monday morning. I make a batch of something on Sunday and portion it out for the week. This has worked so well for me in the past, so I am committing to it once again!
Breakfast: Egg white omelets (prepared at work in my stoneware microwave egg cooker), with spinach and tomatoes.
Morning Snack: 1/2 cup of cantaloupe, 1/2 cup of pineapple
Lunch: Roasted chicken seasoned with Italian and sweet basil rubs; roasted veggies (zucchini, red pepper, onion, and mushroom); 1/3 cup of brown rice
Afternoon Snack: Chobani yogurt with 1/4 cup of Kashi GoLean Crunch
It's all packed and ready to go!
Monday, September 02, 2013
For years, my DH has been a major roadblock to my various get-fit activities. In his opinion, running takes me out of the house too much, batch cooking my lunches on Sundays is too much work, and going to the gym at 5 AM is crazy.
In reality, batch cooking takes much less time, my gym time is hours before he and DD wake up, and my Sunday crack-of-dawn long runs are done before anyone else is ready to even think about the day. He just gets a little cranky when my get-fit efforts go well, as he’s been less than happy about his own body for a long time.
WELL, this year my employer started a new program that pays us to get our annual physicals. Excited by the promise of an extra $300, DH happily visited his GP for his first well visit in years.
You see where this is going, don’t you? After the visit, DH qualified for an employer-sponsored research study on weight loss with an internationally recognized weight control expert, with the promise of another $300 after a successful return trip to his GP.
Of course DH signed up, and immediately began following the major tenants of the study: keep a log of everything you eat, weigh in daily, and commit to a small amount of exercise every day. (Geez that sounds familiar… where have I heard all of this before, fellow Sparkies?)
Because committing to a 1500 calorie diet is a HUGE undertaking for someone who’d been eating closer to 3500, I told DH that I would commit as well. So together, we began watching our portions and finding healthier options for his favorite meals. Cooking dinner became a team effort, and I ramped up my meal-planning efforts to find new veggie-packed recipes that we’d both like. We began experimenting, roasting veggies on my pizza stone, grilling them, and making homemade salsas to serve with grilled chicken.
We’re currently 5 weeks in, and I’m thrilled to report that DH is down 17 pounds!
The unexpected benefit is that my weight also started to drop. Because we’re in it TOGETHER, I had to step up my own habits in order to support DH and I also wasn’t being influenced by his bad habits. The weight fell off seemingly without effort, and I’m now down about 8 pounds from my highest weight this summer.
Also, after a cranky start, DH is now in a place where he can return the support. The pinnacle was this past weekend when I was scheduled for an 11 mile run as part of my training for an upcoming ½ marathon. DH helped me plan my route, made suggestions for a safer, more scenic course, and promised that he’d pick me up if any thunderstorms popped up (meteorology in New England is an imprecise science…).
Pre-run, DH made sure that I had enough nuun and gu, and reminded me to start refueling before I felt that I needed it. When I made it home – drenched from the rain I’d been assured would not happen by the aforementioned meteorologist – he reminded me to stretch and use the foam roller. He said that he’d actually come to watch my race this year!!
While I’m sure that we’ll still hit an occasional rough patch – and he continues to joke that I should take up an easier sport, like ping pong – I can’t put words to how happy I am about our combined success. I’m excited about our weight loss, but I’m thrilled by the TEAM we’ve become in the last few weeks.
Saturday, April 27, 2013
I’ve been going a little crazy these last few weeks, but I’m ready to get back on track! It’s time to get back to basics, working up a good sweat and eating well!! I’m planning to do 2 half marathons this fall, and I’m actually excited to start training again.
To paraphrase the advice a fellow runner gave me: Your first half marathon is really training for your second. I plan to take those lessons from last year’s race to heart, so I can ROCK the next one!
With a Little Help from My Friends... Last year I trained and supported myself – aside from my Spark Friends, of course – but this time I’ve realized that there’s no reason to go it alone! My friend is also ramping up her mileage right now, and we’ve agreed to do a lot of our training together. She’s also a devoted yogi, so we have a standing power yoga date to work out the kinks.
Born to Run... Another problem with last year’s training was Mommy-guilt that I wasn’t spending that available time with DD. I’m already psyching her up to hit the road more often with me for shorter mid-week runs. Bonus: I’ve heard that pushing the stroller burns 1/3 more calories, and it’s motivating to hear that little voice call out “Go, Mommy!” as I slog through the miles.
Against the Wind... I refuse to let weather derail me when I need to log some miles! I cancelled more runs last summer because of the heat, humidity, air quality, and rain, and the lack of a good base of miles really showed when I was trying to make it to the finish line. I ran consistently, if a bit reluctantly, on the treadmill all winter, and will commit to logging those miles indoors whenever I absolutely can’t run outside.
We Can Work it Out... The biggest issue last summer by far was DH sabotaging my efforts, as he was a bit resentful of the time running took me away from the house and caring for DD. (Fellow mother-runners report having this problem a LOT.) Lately though, we seem to have reached an accord regarding my running, and he hasn’t been grumbling as I head out for my long runs. I’m not expecting entirely smooth sailing, especially as I hit double-digit mileage and need to spend more time out of the house, but I’m optimistic that we can get through it.
So, my Sparkly friends, what obstacles have you run into while training? How did you work through them?
Monday, December 31, 2012
I love new beginnings…
I'm starting the new year with a clean slate. I've developed a lot of healthy habits over the past year, and 2013 is the time to put them all to good use. Tomorrow morning I'm going to weigh in and take measurements, and we'll see how far I can get!
I'm going to take 2013 a week at a time, but for today I'm focusing on the big picture:
THIS YEAR, I RESOLVE TO BE THE HAPPIEST, HEALTHIEST PERSON I CAN BE.
To accomplish that, I will:
* Put in a minimum of 1,000 fitness minutes each month (approx. 30 minutes each day)
* Eat as cleanly as possible; consistently track what I eat and stay within my calorie range
* Run more; make running dates with friends to keep it fun and challenging; put aside $1 for every mile I run to put toward something fun; train for a half or two
* Spend as much quality time with DH and DD as possible; plan fun, low-cost activities
* Be present; whether I’m at work or at home, I need to focus on the tasks at hand
Friday, November 30, 2012
This fall completely got away from me, but I'm soooo ready for a big finish to 2012!
I've been doing great at hitting the gym in the morning before work, and eating pretty cleanly... if a bit too much.
I know -- I KNOW -- that it's all in the plan. If I don't have to think about what to eat, because it's all organized and ready to go, good things happen. So tomorrow I'll be planning out my meals for the week before hitting the grocery store, and then I'll be prepping for the week on Sunday.
Also -- just for fun -- I agreed to help a friend train for a Tough Mudder next spring, and I've conveniently found a half marathon around the same time (hey, if I'm running anyway...), and I love the idea of having so long to build up to an awesome race! This winter is about getting leaner, faster, and stronger, so I can kick buns next May!
So for December, the goals are:
* Continue hitting the gym before work, add in more strength training and pilates in the evenings
* Add in "the daily minimum" push-ups, crunches, squats, and lunges
* Continue packing my healthy breakfasts, lunches, and snacks for work
* Get back to planning dinners
* Cut waaaaaay back on the sugar and salt
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