Archive for the ‘Trials and Tribulations’ Category

I’m Bein’ a Glutton for Christmas

Monday, December 27th, 2010

The pattern continues: I’m back up again this week, this time to 184. That’s the biggest jump yet, and not in the flattering way. Up six pounds in a week? I can only hope it has more to do with water retention than with eating all of the cookies left out for Santa…

As I mentioned, we visited my husband’s family in New Jersey for Christmas this year. It was so nice to see all of them and to finally be together for the holiday!

Traveling, though, always wreaks havoc on my plans for eating well.

First, there’s the eight-hour car ride, for which I brought healthy snacks, but those 8 hours still spanned two meals, and there aren’t a lot of options when you’re on the highway.

Then there’s being up until all hours of the morning with your stomach calling out for a fourth meal. And a room full of family whose stomachs agree.

It was Christmas, so of course we had to bake cookies for Santa, and I seriously ate these like mad. Why? Because they were there. And delicious.

There was also the delectable turkey dinner with all the fixin’s (my husband’s first attempt at cooking a turkey – huge success!), Chinese food on Christmas Eve (and leftover lo mein to snack on for the 2 days following) and, of course, the 8-hour car ride back.

It sounds like I did awful with how I ate, and I can’t argue with that, except to say that it could have been worse. There was pie which I didn’t have any of, there were lots of chocolates and even more cookies which I avoided (these ones weren’t sanctioned for Santa, and so didn’t have the same allure), and I could have had MORE of all of the things I did eat.

I did get a run in on Christmas – on the beach! – which was fun. That seems to be becoming a bit of a tradition for me.

But yeah… six pounds in a week? Clearly, I didn’t do well overall.

Even though I’m a bit embarrassed by this gain, I’m also kinda like – so what? It was Christmas and I had a good time, without being completely gluttonous. This week will be rough too (visiting my family for New Year’s) but next week life will be back to normal and so will I. And hopefully I can do better over New Year’s than I did over Christmas.

Who knows – If my pattern continues, I could be down 6 next week. I’m not counting on it, but that would be a lovely belated Christmas gift!

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!


Monday, December 20th, 2010

Huh – It seems my posts have become a bit repetitive: Monday morning: Weight? Good/Bad. Here’s why, and here’s what I’ll do differently… or not.

Sorry for the same-old-same-old. I’ll try to post something more interesting this week.

But not right now; right now it’s the fourth Rally Point!

I’m down again this week! (I’m sure you could’ve guessed that, based on my “two steps forward, two steps back” pattern.) Today I weighed in at 178. If you look at a graph of my weight since the start of this, you’ll see that – overall – there is a downtrend. Hopefully I can hold on to that downtrend over the toughest part of the holidays: Christmas and New Year’s.

This year, my husband and I will be spending Christmas with his side of the family for the first time ever! While it will be strange not to be with my family (as that’s who I’ve spent every Christmas with since birth), I’m really looking forward to seeing my in-laws. They haven’t all been together on Christmas for 11 years (!) so this is a really big deal.

And, to round out 2010, we’ll be visiting my family the following weekend for New Year’s, which I’m excited about, as well!

What this means, though, is that for the next two weekends, I won’t be in my own house and able to control my food. Not only that, but it’s the time of the year when everyone bakes and cooks and drinks and has all sorts of delicious treats out and about. It’s going to be a challenge to continue that downtrend I mentioned so that I can start 2011 out feeling good!

My plan is to bring some healthy snacks, so that I know that I’ll always have those available to me. This will be particularly helpful on the road, when often you’re stuck trying to choose the lesser of two evils from a rest stop or gas station.

The other part of the equation is to try to work out as much as I can without interrupting the fun family activities. Since I’ve been getting up so early to workout and I’m getting used to that, maybe I can do that a few times while out of town.

What are your plans for the next two weeks? Any strategies in place to battle the holiday bulge?

For those of you still in on the Holiday Assault Challenge, now might be a good time to reassess your initial goal: We’re more than halfway through the six weeks, and the last two will be the most difficult. My initial goal was to be down 5 pounds, and I’m down 4, so I’m going to stick with that goal. Hopefully I can combat the next two weeks enough to drop one more pound and come out on top!

If you’re not more than halfway to your goal, though, reassess and adjust as necessary. There’s nothing wrong with that; in fact, it’s a lot better than giving up altogether! If you’re adjusting your goal, send your new one to me today along with your current weight.

In the Words of Paula Abdul…

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

As per usual, following my two steps forward from last week, I’ve taken two steps back this week. Well, a step and a half.

For the third Rally Point, I’m up 3.5 pounds to 182.5. This is almost as insane as last week’s five pound loss, but not a good insane like that was.

Most of the week I did really well with my eating, and my exercise is almost always on point. In fact, on Thursday I was down even further than on Monday to 178.5.

Which means that I gained four pounds in four days.

Just like last week when I said I didn’t believe that I lost 5 pounds of fat, I don’t believe that I gained four pounds of fat this week. But something has certainly gone awry this week.

I’d like to blame it on the fact that I’m female and that this is a ‘special’ time of the month, but I doubt more than half a pound is from that. Let’s be generous and say a full pound. What’s the cause of those other three pounds?

FOOD, that’s what.

On Saturday we got together with a few other couples for dinner: Lots of delicious hors d’oeuvres covering a large table, that we all stood around for three hours. One of my main techniques to thwart excess food ingestion at parties is to not linger around the food. That was nearly impossible at this party, and therefore my brain kept rationalizing eating more and more and I gave in to the deliciousness: “Oh I’ll just have one of those.” Two minutes later… “Man, everyone’s commenting on how good that is – I should try it.” Another five minutes and “I don’t want to be rude; I should try the thing the newest guest brought.” And on and on.

Then there were the desserts. I COULD have just had the one cookie (lady locks, my favorite!). But I also had a little sliver of an almond torte cake (so good). And then later I also had a brownie. There were cupcakes, too, but I refrained from eating any of those. We didn’t take any desserts home, either, so I guess that’s something.

I also had a glass of wine and two glasses of cranberry juice with ginger ale.

Am I beating myself up over my choices at one little party? Not really, because it’s just one party. But – if I can so easily fall off the wagon – so to speak – at one party, what happens when it’s a two or three parties? If you think about it, the holidays are really just a long string of parties that at some point, stop being called “parties” and are just “days”.

Also, I know that those choices affected my weight yesterday, and therefore my ultimate goal. Was the cake that good? No. It wasn’t.

So this week, I’ll do better. Over the weekend, too. It’s the last “easy” weekend of the year, since next weekend is Christmas (holy crap!) and the weekend after that is New Year’s. Hell, if I can’t control myself on normal weekends, those two will be detrimental to my goal, so I must prove to myself that I’m stronger than that.

Who’s with me?

Chugging Along

Monday, December 6th, 2010

It’s Monday again, which means it’s the second Rally Point in the Holiday Assault Challenge! There are a bunch of you out there who are officially in this, and a bunch more who have indicated to me that you’re playing along on your own. Regardless, I hope you’re keeping your health in mind as you enjoy your holiday parties and cookie exchanges!

I did damn well this week. I went to a cocktail party on Friday hosted by one of my husband’s coworkers and was very conscious of what I ate. I didn’t deprive myself of anything I really wanted, but I was discriminating as I made my way around the hors d’oeuvre tables.

A little trick? Hold out on the things that you love but aren’t good for you as long as possible. Once you get the taste in your mouth it’s harder to resist, and the longer you wait, the less time you’ll have the taste in your mouth, so the less of it you’ll eat. Probably.

Last week I was 184. This week I weighed in at 179. That’s five pounds! Yay!

I don’t actually believe I lost five pounds of fat, but more likely that my two pound gain last week was due to excess sodium from Thanksgiving.

Whatever the reason, I’m thrilled to be back in the 170s and I’m pleased to be down three pounds from the start of my little challenge just two weeks ago.

So how are the rest of you doing? Any issues that are causing road blocks to your success? Maybe I can help! It’s worth a shot, right?

The Battle of Turkey Hill

Monday, November 29th, 2010

You’ve heard the phrase “Nobody’s perfect”, right?

Just call me nobody.

Last Monday, for the start of the Holiday Assault Challenge, I weighed 182. This morning, I’m up two pounds to 184.

Obviously I’m not thrilled about this, but I know it could be a lot worse. I feel like I did okay over the Thanksgiving holiday. My husband and I were in Buffalo visiting my family, and if you know anything about Buffalo, you know you have to eat a lot in order to stay warm.

hahah I kid.

Seriously, though: Was I perfect? No. Was I awful? No. I ate more calories than an average Thursday, but that’s not at all surprising. In fact, I think that’s the idea behind Thanksgiving. Why else would you cook for 10 hours?

And yes, I want to live a healthy lifestyle. But I think that if I completely deprived myself on Thanksgiving, I wouldn’t be living the life I wanted. Again, I didn’t go crazy, but did I eat a piece of pie? Hell yeah. Did I also eat a piece of pie on Friday? Nope!

That’s the thing about special occasions: They’re just one day. So enjoy it (without overindulging) and then get back on track as quickly as possible.

This is me, getting back on track. Mark my words that next week, my weight will be lower, not higher.

Cadets: Today is your first Weekly Rally Point. Send me your weight by midnight tonight! And don’t fret if it’s higher than last week – just do better. (

The Scene of the Crime

Friday, November 12th, 2010

I haven’t run in nearly two months. I think the last time I really ran was the 5k I did at the beginning of September… you know, the one at which I finally broke 30 minutes. (I’m still proud of that one!)

Tomorrow, I’m getting back on that horse. I have a run date scheduled with my old running buddy, J-Roc. I’m a little nervous about it since it’s been so long. I feel like I’m completely out of shape these days and I’m afraid I’ve lost all of my endurance and I’ll have to walk every two minutes. If that happens, J-Roc, you have my apologies.

There’s another reason I’m a little nervous about this particular run. I realize this is probably silly, but it is what it is.

We’re running in the same park I was in a few months ago when someone called me a “fat bitch” out the window of their car. Again, I know this is probably a silly thing to still be thinking about since that happened in June, but prior to that girl, I hadn’t dealt with that sort of ridicule in about 50 pounds. And now that I’m a bit out of shape, I’m feeling a little self conscious and I’m afraid I’ll be bullied again.

Ha – I feel silly just typing that!

Silly or not, if I’m the victim of another drive-by defamation, I will chase down the vehicle in question and give the offender a well-deserved beat down.

We’ll call it speed training.

Hiatus: Over

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

I’m not convinced there’s anyone out there who is still reading this, but on the off-chance some of you are, I’m pleased to say that I’m back.

The last two months have been a bit of a whirlwind, filled with all sorts of activities: a vacation in the Bahamas (Tip: Don’t go to the Bahamas around hurricane season); tons of Kung Fu including a big demonstration for and workshop with our Great Grandmaster; Fall Softball, during which our team – Jerry’s Kids – came in second place; a family wedding in Punxsutawney; a happenin’ Halloween party at which my husband and I were cheesy 50’s robots; at least one trip up to Buffalo to visit the fam; my birthday; my 5-year anniversary with my husband; and two of the most busy work months I’ve had since starting my own business 5 years ago.

All in all, 2 good months, but damn, a girl could use a break!

I guess what all this amounts to is that I haven’t had a lot of spare time, and when I do have a moment, I haven’t felt up for blogging.

Of course, full disclosure, part of the reason I haven’t felt the urge to blog is that I haven’t exactly been the picture of health lately. I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t run in weeks (weeks!), nor have I been going to the gym or doing other sorts of physical activity (except Kung Fu and softball, but we’ve already established that neither of those have enough cardio to really count.) To top it off, since I’ve been so busy – and tired – I’ve really gotten lax with my eating habits too. Not much cooking and a lot of restaurant going.

Too much food and not enough exercise? Terrible combination. Not exactly the kind of thing you want to gloat about.

That being said, I also don’t want to hide from it. It is what it is. I can’t go backwards and change the last two months. I can only go forward and do better from here out.

And I’m going to.

Who’s with me?

Race Recap: IKEA 5k 2010

Saturday, September 11th, 2010

I ran another 5k race this morning. I’m happy to report that it was far more successful than the 5k I did last month, where I couldn’t even run the whole thing without walking. (Still beating myself up about that one…)

This is the second time I ran this particular race. Last year, I did pretty well (great for where I was a year ago!) and this year was even better.

Once again, my friend J-Roc ran it with me. We decided that we’d try to beat each other in an attempt to push ourselves to do better. He was convinced that I’d have a better time, but I wasn’t so sure.

The first mile of this race is downhill, which is great for me. A lot of people have problems running down hills because the impact hurts their knees. It doesn’t bother me at all, though: I still have reasonably young knees, and since I went most of my life without doing much physical activity, they’re not worn out. Advantage: laziness!

So, I ran my little heart out that first mile, passing as many people as possible. After the Mile 1, we got to a trail which was perfectly flat. That’s when I had to slow down to my normal pace… and many of the people I had just passed passed me back.

But not J-Roc!

He didn’t pass me until a little bit into the third mile… :/

Of course, I couldn’t let that stand for long, and I sped up a bit so we were going at the same pace. Shortly before the finish line, I picked it up again (thanks to Huey Lewis on my iPod) and finished ahead of him by a whole 8 seconds. Take THAT, J-Roc!

The best part, really, is that I set a PR, finally breaking thirty minutes in a 5k.

At 29:09.

Yee haw!

Actually, this race only had a chip sensor at the finish, instead of both the start and finish. Which means they give everybody the same start time even though – unless you are at the very front of the pack – you likely didn’t start at the same time as the gun. And I was not at the front.

Which means, my real time is probably more like 28:50 or so, but we won’t split hairs: I broke 30 minutes, and I’m thrilled.

Now I have to set a new goal! Any suggestions?

Race Recap: Run Around the Square

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

Yesterday was the 5k race I told you about. I’d like to tell you that I kicked that race’s ass, but – sadly – the opposite is true.

That race totally and completely kicked my ass.

I’m not entirely sure why, either. I have a lot of potential explanations, and more than likely, it’s a combination of them all.

One of my excuses is that I was dressed inappropriately for the weather. When I got up in the morning, it was quite cold. I decided to wear pants instead of my long shorts, and wore a cotton jacket over my short-sleeved tee. I was comfortable until just before the race start when I quickly took off the jacket with the intention of throwing it to my friends who live a block away from the starting line. Unfortunately, I ran right past them so I was stuck with it the entire time. I tied it around my waist where it burned a hole through my midsection like a magnifying glass. It seems I forgot that you’re supposed to dress for 20 degrees warmer than it is when you run.

Also, I think I was a little dehydrated. Stupid me didn’t drink any water prior to the race start. Not sure what I was thinking there. Especially since I took advantage of my friend’s bathroom just before the race – absolutely no reason to have refrained from drinking water.

Which leads me to my next excuse: When I got to the second water station, I really felt like I needed to partake, and since it’s damn near impossible to drink water while running slowed to a walk while drinking. After that, when I was tired (which i was a lot due to the hills in the second mile!), it was a lot harder mentally for me to push myself to continue running because I had already walked. My mind was like, “You’ve already walked once, what’s the difference?”

While I’m sure all of those things contributed to the difficulty I had at yesterday’s race, the main cause is most definitely my lack of training for it. Sure, I work out daily, so I’m not out of shape in general, but I’m out of running shape. Running is a different beast than anything else, and as I’ve learned through experience, consistency in training is key to performance.

So even though I said my goal was simply to have fun, I’m pretty disappointed with myself… and my 33:07 finish.

I didn’t even have that much fun, that’s what really sucks. Don’t get me wrong: I’m glad I did it. But for me, if I’m doing poorly at something, it’s hard for me to enjoy it. And the fact that I couldn’t run 3.1 miles without walking – even though I did that and then some just days earlier with J-Roc – makes for a poor performance, indeed.

Stepping it Up

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

A while back – about 75 pounds into my weight-loss journey – I attempted Tony Horton’s P90X program. Sadly, I only lasted about 3 weeks of the 12.

If you’re not familiar, P90X is a 90-day system comprised of 12 different workouts that you alternate to keep your muscles “confused” so you don’t plateau or get bored.

It’s incredibly challenging. And time-consuming. And tiring.

And I’m ready to try it again.

When I tried it before, my husband did it with me. Committing to doing something with someone else can be a good thing, but it can also be a bad thing. When the time commitment became too much for my husband with his work schedule, I just let it go too. (Even though since I have my own business and work from home, I have more time than most…) I didn’t stop because I felt bad that he couldn’t do it with me – he’s always incredibly supportive. I stopped because I wasn’t invested enough to do it on my own.

I’m further along in my journey now. I’m in better shape than I was then, and I’m mentally stronger, too. I’ve always secretly wanted to try this again (I hate feeling like a quitter!), but I’ve never taken the leap. After reading about how Rachel of (Body by Pizza fame) is about to give it a go and “get buff”, I was inspired to finally try it again.

Honestly, I’m still a little afraid that I’ll fail again. If this is going to beat me, though, it’s not going to be from lack of trying.

And so, starting tomorrow, July 1, I will restart P90X. I think the structure and the intensity and the challenge will be good for me. We all know how good I am at following schedules! And how good I am at doing nothing when I don’t have a schedule…

I’m actually a little excited :) Wish me luck!