Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Wet Wednesday

Happy Wednesday, all! It has been raining all day here, so no outside exercise for me today! But I hope to cook something much better for dinner tonight because after my debaucle in the kitchen yesterday, I was told about a website that had some great recipes & she said "beginners welcome". The recipes are from Chef Devin, and they do look yummy. I haven't decided which one to try, but if anyone would like to try one, this is the site.

I read an article from Yahoo! today that had a very misleading title. It claimed to have a way to burn an extra 150 calories a day just sitting on the couch. I should have known better than to really think it could be true, just to sit on the couch and burn 150 calories. I thought that maybe it would tell me how to do some simple exercises to burn calories that I could do while sitting on the couch, but no, it did not. It said that by adding lean muscle mass, one's metabolism would kick into high gear and burn an extra 150 calories a day. This is true, but just not what I was expecting from the article. The article recommended 2 weight training sessions a week along with 3 cardio sessions for at least 40 minutes each per week. This is definitely a great way to boost your metabolism and weight loss, but since I'm already exercising at least this much, this doesn't really help me that much. But I still thought it was a good enough tip to pass on!

I have done great eating healthy today! I switched it up from my normal for breakfast today. I still had my Almond milk, but with it, I had an apple and an egg instead of cereal. It was yummy, and I stayed full almost all morning. The protein in the egg and the fiber in the apple were definitely helpful in that respect. I did have a mid/late morning snack of a FiberPlus Antioxidants bar and a peice of string cheese. I had my favorite SmartOnes mini pizzas for lunch, and a WW ice cream bar. Those were absolutely delish as well. It really is not difficult to eat healthy, and once you find a few healthy options, more and more seem to appear, and there are so many out there with new ones coming out all the time!

I haven't worked out yet today, but when I get home I plan on doing an elliptical workout as well as the p90x Yoga DVD. I might not have time to get the whole DVD in, because it's an hour and a half long(!) but I'm going to at least do some of it. I love how I feel after yoga, so refreshed and calm and energized! I would definitely recommend it as part of a weight loss plan or just as a part of a healthy lifestyle. Love it!

Quick thought to end with: I was saddened by the report released today that said obesity has risen in 28 states.

Don't contribute to America's weight gain! Stay fit!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Some pics

Here are some pics from the wedding I was in on Saturday!

I'm the second one from the left in this one

These are 2 more. I was feeling skinny that day, since I got down to 125 lbs! :-)

Stay fit!

Relationships....with food; Dinner fiaso

I have a love/hate relationship with soda. This was my starting idea for today's post. I just had to have some caffeine this morning, and a soda was my only option. It was so good, but I hated to have to drink one since I know how hard I worked to get them out of my diet. I also know how bad they are for me, but I just needed the caffeine (thank you, marketing final). So, here are a couple of foods that I love or hate.

LOVE- Almond milk. This is my absolute favorite thing to have in the morning. I can have it with cereal or by itself (or both!), and a cup is only 90 calories! I usually buy Almond Breeze (Vanilla, not unsweetened), but I know that there are a few other brands as well. This milk is lactose free, soy free, and has a great flavor that is slightly sweet and SO good.

HATE- Cottage Cheese. Ok, I have tried to eat this, but I just can't stand it! When I did the Body For Life diet/weight loss program, I really really tried to eat it, and I even added things like fruit to it, but it is just awful. I hate the smell, the look and the texture of it. I don't care too much for the taste of it, but that would be bearable if I could get past the texture of it. UGH!

LOVE- Broccoli. There are some veggies that I don't like, but broccoli is not one of them. I love broccoli; I love it raw, cooked, plain, with cheese sauce, and pretty much any other way you can think of. I really like the convenience of the microwaveable steamer packets. It's also convenient to be able to eat it raw. I don't like it when it's cooked too long and therefore all mushy, but otherwise, broccoli is hard to mess up. Which is good for people who can't me!

HATE- Hamburgers. I know, this is yet another reason why I'm weird. :-) I like to think of this as a good thing though, because it means I'm not tempted to pull in a drivethru and pick up a fatty, greasy, bad-for-me burger when I'm hungry. The one exception is homemade burgers, as in made from ground beef and grilled burger. As long as I know it came from lean ground beef, I can eat it, but if it's any other way, it practically turns my stomach. Ew!

Ok, so that's just a small sampling of what I like, especially when I'm eating healthy and trying to lose weight.

I exercised today for 20 minutes using my elliptical machine. I didn't like the workout I did though. I like to switch up the resistance and pace, but today's workout stayed at one resistance level almost the whole time, and only varied between 2 different paces. I know that doing intervals is key for weight loss, and this workout didn't include many of them. At least I still burned 240 calories.

Dinner was quite interesting tonight. I got a recipe that I tried about a week ago for a white bean soup from a friend, and I was super excited to try it. It was supposed to be really healthy and most of the ingredients were veggies. It looked complicated when I set out, but I was determined to make it. I spent FOREVER getting it ready, and then it took about 35 minutes to cook. I could tell that when it was done simmering it didn't look quite right. The next step was to put half into a blender so that the soup would be thicker and creamier. Well. That was just a disaster. Long story short-my kitchen was/is covered. in. soup. GAH! Seriously?!?!?! I just could not believe that as soon as I turned on the blender, the lid came right off. I was so mad. And at the same time I was laughing because, honestly, it was pretty funny. I'm not even sure it was worth it. The soup was awful. I must have done something wrong, because it was not like the soup that I tried last week. I think that if I could have gotten it all into the blender (without it going all over my kitchen), it would have been okay. Not great, but at least okay. All that effort, and I ended up eating a piece of soy chicken. I am so NOT a cook, and I'm not ashamed to admit it! I think I'll have to have some help to make that the right way....maybe next time!

Lastly, I created an FB fanpage! Go check it out and "Like" it!! :-)

Stay fit!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Monday Monday Monday

Yes, I said Monday 3 times. It has been quite the Monday so far. Okay, maybe that's a little dramatic, but it has been a little crazy. It's finals time in summer school (part 1) so I've been digging into the books today since I've been home from work. I had a 5 page paper to work on, and material to learn for a presentation, so that's mostly what I've done this afternoon/evening. I haven't been able to exercise today, but I have also done some house work to get in some calorie burn. I did laundry and dishes, and I also made dinner. Wow, looking at it in words, it seems like I accomplished a lot today! I wish I was this productive every day!

I ate very healthy today. I had my favorite breakfast of Kashi GoLean cereal with Almond Milk. I had a packet of Newton's fruit crispers (apple flavor-yum!) for a snack, and for lunch I had my new favorite, Smart Ones Pizza minis. Those things are so good, and they're only 280 calories! I made pork chops for dinner, and I ate a sweet potato with it (hubby ate baked potato and rolls). I'm not sure how many calories that is total, but I know that it is reasonable and within a healthy range of calories.

I read an article today (that would have been of great use to me in the last 2 weeks, but oh well, haha) that talks about healthy rapid weight loss. It was great to find an article that recommends fast weight loss instead of advising against it. I love it when I find professionals and researchers who back up the method that I use and that I know works. The article affirms my belief that weight loss is about calorie deficits. In it, the author (an RD) says that staying in a calorie intake range of 1050-1200 with an hour of exercise will get a weight loss of 3-5 pounds a week as opposed to the normally recommended 1-2 pounds per week. She also recommends limiting sodium and starch to reduce fluid retention. I did learn something new from this article. Dieticians sometimes recommend an average calorie intake of 7 calories per pound of body weight (1050 for a 150 pound person), but no less than 1200. With this article, the RD recommends no lower than 1050. There are also some good tips for staying focused in the article. You can read it here.

Have a great night! Stay fit!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Super Sunday

Another 2 pounds are gone! :-) Which is super!! As of this morning I weigh 125. This is a total of 5 lbs lost. I was quite surpised since the past couple of days have been REALLY busy and I haven't had much time to exericse or even think about eating as healthy as I should. Friday was crazy with work and school and getting things ready for Saturday. I spent most of Saturday doing wedding for a good friends that got married last night. But thankfully I got through the weekend and didn't do too much damage!

I want to share a website that I found that is really cool. It is set up to help subscribers form any habit they choose. It's called HabitForge and it works by sending you a daily email where you say if you were successful or not that day in forming your chosen habit. If you click no it sets you back to day 1, and if you are successful you go from day 1 - 21 and you have formed a new habit. I'm going to sign up, but I haven't decided what I want my new habit to be. Here's the link.

I hope everyone had a great weekend and looking forward to a great week! Stay fit!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Thoughtful Thursday

Today has been a very thoughtful kind of day. I have been considering reasons why I am not losing as much weight as I wanted to, and I found a few articles that may help.

This article gives 4 reasons why you may not be losing weight like you wanted/thought you would. 1) "You're not fully commited". This is one that I struggle with. If I can't find the right motivation, I lose commitment and it becomes less important in my life. I have to constantly remind myself of my motives and goals, or find new ones so that I will keep going. The temptations jump out at me more persistently if I'm not fully committed. 2) "People expect miracles". I don't think that I expect miracles, so I don't think this one is an issue for me. I know that some people, though, jump into weight loss programs expecting to lose all this weight and when they don't lose it immediately they get discouraged and give up. Weight loss is not an immediate thing, it takes hard work and time, so going into it expecting miracles will just lead to disappointment. 3) "Your plan isn't sustainable". This is why focusing more on living healthy is the most important thing, rather than weight loss alone. If you make being healthy into a lifestyle, then it is sustainable over the long-run as opposed to something short lived/extreme that will fizzle out sooner than later. 4) "You can't forgive your slip-ups". This is the other thing that I have a hard time with. If I mess up or even take a break from being so intense, I feel so guilty and like I'm letting myself and others down. I have to let myself rest without guilt, and allow myself to mess up here and there. If I don't, I will just make myself crazy and I will lose heart and quit to go back to being unhealthy. This is where I try to use the 80/20 rule that I have talked about, where you do good at least 80% of the time so that you can get over slip ups for 20% of the time. So, forgive and forget....that's the best thing to do :-) Here's the link to the full article.

Another article I found talks about reasons your diet may get off track. It lists 5 reasons why. 1)Boredom. This is SO true! I know that consistency is a good thing, but eating the same thing all the time just gets so old. 2)Getting too lax. I am guilty of this sometimes for sure. I get comfortable in whatever diet/method (a specific diet like weight watchers or a method such as just being healthy)I'm using and I get lax and don't do it 100%. This is kind of like boredom for me. If I get to comfortable in what I'm doing, I will make excuses as to why I don't have to do it totally right and that I'll make up for it later. Of course, I never make up for it and end up feeling horrible about it. This is another reason to switch it up and eat something different rather than the same old food every day. 3)Vacation. This one is tough, but at least if this is the case, it only lasts a short amount of time. Unless you get extended vacation or something of course (lucky you if you do, haha). When I'm on vacay, I just wanna chill and let loose, not watch myself and monitor what I'm eating all the time. In this case, moderation is the key. As long as I don't go overboard and stuff myself, I should be okay and not incur any damage. Also, exercising while on vacay is important too if I'm not planning on being careful with food. If I'm at the beach, that's easy because I LOVE a run on the beach. Other locales are harder, but it's not too difficult to find something to do.4)Parties. This is a really big factor in the summer (like right now) or during the holidays. There is always a reason to have a party this time of year it seems, and those throwing the party may not know or care that a guest is looking to eat healthy or lose weight. And even if they did, who wants to make 50 different things to please everyone?! I know I don't. So again, moderation is key, as well as maybe eating a little something before going so that I'm not starving when I arrive. If I'm too hungry, all healthy thoughts will be gone out of my head, and I will just be wanting to eat anything in sight. Also, making sure to exercise before I go helps me stay mindful of what I am eating. 5)Stress. This is definitely a biggie. Stress does several things to your body. First, it makes your body hold on to fat. Second, it makes you want to eat more. This is a dangerous combination for weight loss goals. Exercising is a great stress reliever, and it helps me focus and feel better. Also, yoga is fantastic for stress relief, as is meditation. I don't do meditation very well unless I'm listening to a "guide" of some sort. It is definitely relaxing, but I can't do it by myself. I know that research supports that meditation is good for mind/body harmony, so it's definitely something worth trying. Lack of sleep is also a factor in stress. I have trouble getting into bed at a decent hour, so I know I need to work on that. Also, there are herbal teas that are very helpful in calming the mind and body, like chamomile and others. The ones I have tried are very good, and they really do work. I slept great the nights that I drank them. You can look at the article here.

That's all I've got for today. Stay fit!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

What a week

So far, this week has been crazy! I feel like I haven't stopped to take a breath most days! Even so, I have been really good about staying on track with my goals. I didn't set any specific goals this week because I knew it would be crazy, but I don't want to get off track either. I exercised on Sunday (yes, I know that counts as last week, but that has been since my last post so I'm including it, haha), Monday and yesterday (Tuesday). I exercised a lot yesterday, and I may have done too much. I am taking a break today to make up for overworking myself :-) I can definitely use the rest! I ran a mile at lunch yesterday, then did a 350 calorie routine on the elliptical and then went and ran some more with my sister-in-law (over a mile, not totally sure how long we went). I think that I deserve a nice day to rest after all of that, and I'm not going to let myself feel guilty for it! I struggle with feeling guilty if I don't give 190% when I'm working toward my goals, but I'm not going to let those feelings in because they will just bring me down and discourage me. If I let them in, I will get down about it and it will just send all my hard work down the drain. So, I have to let myself rest, and I am doing so today.

I am having a hard time with eating healthy this week. I am on some medicine temporarily that is making me super hungry. This is making it really hard to keep my calories under control, but I'm trying really hard. I only take to work a certain amount of food, so I have no choice but to eat the right (and right amount of) things. When I get home is when I have a hard time. I just want to eat and eat and eat, and I have to distract myself and do something else to take my mind off of it. Also, I have been CRAVING something sweet, so I went to the grocery store and got some Skinny Cow truffle bars, and they really hit the spot. They are only 160 calories so they don't ruin my calorie count and they kick that sweet craving so that I can think rationally again about what to eat or not eat! That's what eating healthy is about, finding a balance and substituting things that are better for you in the place of high calorie, fattening things. That way, you can have your cake and eat it too (ha, yeah I know, that was totally corny). A better way to put it, I can satisfy my craving for "bad" foods with good-for-me foods, or at least foods that are better for me than the bad ones.

I have not lost any more weight, but I think that if I can get some more rest, I can change that. I know that not getting enough rest is detrimental to weight loss efforts, but I am so busy that it is hard to get all the rest I need. I am going to bed early tonight for sure though, so that I can get a good nights sleep! Hopefully that will help me lose more weight, but it will at least make me feel better so that maybe I have more energy to workout or the brain power to make better food decisions.

Have a great night everyone! Stay fit!

Friday, June 18, 2010


I have been so sore since I did my last P90X workout! I love that feeling, it makes me feel like I worked really hard and accomplished something that will help me to reach my goals.

I didn't get to update yesterday, it was a crazy day. I continued taking my Slimmetry supplements and I really like the way they energize me and make me feel like I am burning more calories and fat without doing anything extra. Also, I tried a meal bar, the cherry & almond flavor. IT WAS SO GOOD!!! In case you missed the point (haha, like you could miss the all caps), I really liked it and will definitely be ordering some of those. Don't forget, if you can find all of these products here.

I have not done any more P90X workouts, but I have done something both today and yesterday. I ran yesterday and worked on my elliptical today. I know that this weekend will be hectic because I have a wedding to go to, so I doubt I will get any exercise in on Saturday.

I hope everyone has a great weekend! Stay fit!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Another pound lost!! I have now lost 3 pounds total. I started this journey at 130 and as of this morning, I'm now 127. Yay! It's so encouraging to know all of this effort is paying off!

I think I'm a glutton for punishment. I will definitely be sore tomorrow! When I got home from work, I did the P90X Core Synergistics #8 DVD. I. Thought. I. Would. Die. I'm not was one of the hardest workouts I have ever done. Of course, that's the point, but was hard! And then, after all that hard work (and almost dying) I went and ran 2 miles with my sister-in-law! I don't know how many total calories I burned, but I know it has to be high!!

I did so great with eating healthy today! When I went to the grocery store last night in search of a high protein breakfast, I found another Kashi cerial called GoLean. It has 13 grams of fiber in 3/4 cup, and 110 calories. It is not a very sweet cereal, but with a cup of almond milk it was pretty good, definitely something I could eat regularly. That combined with a scoop of protein powder mixed with a cup of water (18 grams of protein) put me easily into the 30 grams of protein range, like I talked about yesterday. I was full all morning! Then for lunch, I had a huge bowl of romaine lettuce with 2 tbsps of dressing and a pouch of tuna packed in water. I had a snack of an apple with 2 tbsp of peanut butter. Then after my workout I had a protein shake and for dinner I had 4 mini pizzas (by SmartOnes) that were delicious. All in all, I had roughly 1200-1300 calories. Considering how much I worked out, I probably should have had a little more, but I didn't know during the day that I was going to work out so much.

I tried some of the Nutrilite products today that I wrote about yesterday. Long story short-they are AWESOME! I took the Slimmetry supplement before breakfast and lunch. The directions say to take it before all 3 meals, but I didn't take it before dinner because it has caffeine in it, and I can't sleep if I have caffeine too late. So, I skipped the dinner dose. When I took both the breakfast and lunch doses, I felt so great. I felt energized (possibly a result of the caffeine) and I felt like I was burning more fat (yes, I know that is completely psychological). After my workout, I tried the vanilla protein shake, and it was really delicious. It was definitely better than some I have tried that taste very powdery and not sweet, but this one was smooth and sweet without being too sweet. I'm going to keep taking the Slimmetry tomorrow and I really want to try the meal bar, so I'll update about that tomorrow.

Until then, Stay fit!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Healthy & Happy

Today was a bit of a lazy day for me. I got home and decided I wanted today to be my day off because I definitely didn't feel like exercising. That's a little disappointing considering how motivated I was yesterday, but I know I'll get back into it tomorrow.

Also, I did really great eating healthy today, so that makes up for it a bit. For breakfast, I had cereal as well as almond milk with protein powder mixed in. I'll explain that in a minute. For lunch, I had some white bean soup that my coworker brought in, and it was DELICIOUS! I told her I definitely want the recipe! It was so light and tasty that I want to make a big batch of it so that I could eat it for lunch all week, which would make packing my lunch so easy!For dinner, I made sphaghetti using whole wheat pasta. I read yesterday that just because something is labeled "whole wheat" doesn't mean that the whole wheat is a main ingredient. In fact, some things have less than 2% whole wheat and it is one of the last ingredients listed on the nutritional label! So, when I bought this pasta, I checked the label and made sure that whole wheat was at the top of the list. Really, using whole wheat pasta makes spaghetti a very healthy choice. As long as I don't pile my plate with it, it is not loaded with calories, and neither is the tomato sauce. Plus, the sauce contains a good portion of the recommended veggie servings for the day. explain what I meant about my breakfast. Normally, I do not mix protein powder into my milk. However, I was recently told by a friend that if you take in around 30 grams of protein with breakfast, you will burn more fat in the next 24 hours, and if you take in less, you will actually hold on to fat for the next 48 hours! So I decided to see if I could actually take in 30 grams. No matter what I tried, I could not do it with what I currently have. I guess I will be making a trip to the grocery store tonight!

I am really excited about some new products that I got today. My friend Jordan and her husband run a business that sells Nutrilite nutritional products and supplements. I have been looking at her website, and I contacted her to see what she thought I should try, and also to get some samples. I got a protein shake and meal bar that look yummy, as well as some water flavoring that has glucosamine in it to protect joints. Also, she gave me samples of the supplements Slimmetry, which helps your body burn fat faster, as well as Carb Blocker 2, which helps to block the absorbtion of carbs when eating a high carb meal. I am super excited to try some of the products tomorrow, and I'll let you know what I think! Thanks a bunch to Jordan & JJ!!

Stay fit!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Motivated Monday

Is it already Monday again? I guess so! I feel quite motivated today, so I need to set some goals for this week to channel that motivation into something productive. Okay, so my goals are to work out for 1 hour for 6 days this week. I want to run at least 2 days of that and do P90X workouts, and incorporate weight training 3 days as well. I need to do some housework also, so I will add that on top of the workout goals for the week. As far as eating, my goal is to keep a journal this week to track what I am eating and to better keep up with my calorie intake. I will continue to stay in the 1200-1500 calorie range.

I still haven't lost any more weight, but I'm hoping that by holding my calorie intake steady and upping my workouts, that will change. I so badly want to change my body and feel better about it. I feel like I am starting to see a change in my body, even though I haven't had any more weight loss. Wanting that change and seeing a small amount of change (even if it may be imaginary) in myself has provided that motivation that I feel today. I am hoping that it lasts throughout the rest of the week, but I may need some encouragement to keep it up! It's a good thing I have great friends to support me! :-) Keeping a journal will also help me figure out where and when I am messing up so that I can correct it and move on towards losing weight.

I really would like to lose 5-6 pounds in the next 2 weeks. I know that that is not a healthy loss though. Doctors recommend that 1-2 pounds per week is a healthy range, so I will do my best to lose at least that. I have learned through much research and conversations with professionals that in order to achieve this 1-2 pound weight loss, there needs to be a 600 calorie deficit every day. I need to burn 600 more calories than I take in. To get this, I first have to know my resting metabolic rate to figure out how many calories my body burns without doing any activity (thus "resting" metabolic rate). Most any RMR calculator brought up with a Google search will work, you really need just a ballpark to get that base number. I never remember my exact number, but I know that it is roughly 1400 calories. Then I add in the calories that I take in on a particular day to see how many calories I need to burn to get my deficit of 600. That 600 can come from any activity including working out. That may seem like a daunting number, but keep in mind that anything you do during the day is going to burn calories. Even typing this post I am burning calories. Everything from walking to the car to cleaning the house to eating my lunch is burning calories. The website I posted a week or two ago is a good resource for calculating how many calories you burn doing different activities (here it is again in case you don't want to search for it!). For example: My RMR is 1400; I eat 1500 calories; I do daily activities of driving for 30 minutes (59 calories), typing for 30 minutes (44 calories), light office work for 5 hours (222 calories), and an elliptical workout for 30 minutes (400 calories). My calorie deficit will be 625 (1500-1400-59-44-222-400=-625). If I want to eat more calories, then I have to adjust my activities to match that. I hope that isn't too confusing, but if it is then let me know and I will get into more detail, or I can help you customize it for yourself.

Have a happy Monday! Stay fit!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Wacky Weekend

Well, this weekend has not been as productive towards my weight loss goals as it should have been. I didn't get much actual "workout" time in, BUT I did do a lot of work around the house and walking around to make up for it. The hubby and I did some work outside so I think I got some quality calorie burn with that. We were pretty much outside all weekend. I did really good on Saturday with eating right. I ate a decent breakfast (whole grain waffles) and then went to get a haircut (yay!) so I had no time for snacking like I usually do on the weekends. I had a really great lunch of roast beef sandwich from arbys-yum-(and low calorie if I take off one of the bun halves) and went to a cookout for dinner. I had some dessert at the cookout, but I figured that since I had been pretty good lately that it was okay to indulge a little! Actually, I have read many times that it is detrimental to your weight loss plan if you always deny yourself, so it is better to have just a little of something that you really crave than to deny and then go overboard. When I was doing the body for life diet, the author of the book, Dr. Pamela Peeke, said to always go by the 80/20 rule. That meant that if I am good for 80% of the time, I can forgive myself for getting off track for 20% of the time. I try to do better than 80%, and usually do, but I know that if I beat myself up for messing up that it will hurt more than help. So, sometimes I let myself be a little lax :-)

I tried P90X on Friday. O!M!G! I tried what seems to be a more easy workout (the cardio DVD-#11) and it was HARD! I felt so good after I finished it though! I love that feeling after a workout, the feeling that I have really worked hard and pushed myself. I felt like I had really pushed my body toward my ultimate goal of being fit and happy with my body. I will try the other DVD I have, Core Synergistics-#8, next week.

I found a good site today that I'm going to use to find a 5K near me. I really would like to do one soon, which will help me achieve my goal #8, which was to run a 5K by this summer. I think that my extra work on the elliptical is helping me with my endurance when I run. This is great because I am building my endurance and cutting my time without doing so much outside in the heat and without hurting my knees & shin splints any worse. I'm going to figure out which one I want to do and I will let everyone know! :-) You can find one here.

Hope everyone has a great week! Stay fit!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Fantastic Friday

I am so glad it's Friday! I am looking forward to a fun and healthy weekend. Plus I'm getting a hair cut too! I plan on not only continuing my workouts, but also increasing the intensity and length of them. I want to up my cardio and add in weight training for all areas of my body.

I have been looking into cardio exercises that are less impact, because both myself and my regular running partner are having trouble with our knees hurting. I also have a lot of trouble with shin splints. If I run on pavement too many days in a row, my shins hurt so bad I can hardly walk the next day. So, even though I love running, I need something that is not so high impact. Some days I can use my new elliptal (that I love), but in order to keep my body from plateauing, I've got to switch it up. I have found so far 3 different types of cardio that can be substituted.
1)Biking. I don't own a bike, so I can't take advantage of this one right now, but I have read that it is SO much easier on your knees (as well as hips) than running. You burn more calories running a mile than you do biking a mile. Running a mile burns about 110 calories, and biking at 15mph for a mile burns about 31 calories. However, biking a mile takes much less time than running a mile, and it is easier. Running is much more intense workout in less time, but biking stresses your joints less. If you bike for 20 miles at 15pmh, you equal the amount of calories burned in 5.6 miles of running, which is 620 calories. That's a lot of calories! I might think about investing in a bike...
2)Zumba. I don't know if any of you have taken a Zumba class (or viewed a Zumba DVD), but I took the class at my old gym, and it was AWESOME! Zumba is so much fun! It is a "dance" type of class that uses Latin-inspired music and dance moves. One hour of Zumba burns mega-calories. And the best part about it is that you don't have to be a good dancer, and you don't have to even do the moves right; all you have to do is just move! I love it! They have DVD's for those who don't go to a gym (like me), and you can buy them on their website (and probably in stores, but I haven't looked for them so I can't say for sure). If you want something fun and upbeat that doesn't feel like a workout, I would definitely go for this! Here is the official About Zumba page if you want to look for more information.
3)P90X. There is only one word that comes to mind when I think of P90X: Intense! This is apparently one of the most intense workout systems available right now. I haven't tried it yet, but I am planning to. I have looked at their website and there are 12 DVD's that contain many different workouts. I really want to try the cardio one as well as the stretch one that looks like it is centered around yoga/pilates. Also, there are different DVD's for different areas of your body such as the Ab workout one. I borrowed the cardio one yesterday and plan to try it sometime this weekend. The website for P90X claims that you will get "ripped" in 90 days. Since I don't have all the DVD's I can't try that claim for myself, but I will definitely try some of them and see how it goes. I think it is just the thing to kick my butt into gear and get this weight-loss going. And I like how it is a system you can do in your own home and is much easier on your joints than pounding the pavement outside.

That's all I've got for now. Have a great weekend and Stay Fit!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Thankfully Thursday

It's almost the weekend...which is why I'm thankful on this Thursday! :-)

I have not lost any more weight yet, which is slightly disappointing. I have done super good this week with the goals that I set on Monday. I have stayed under 1500 calories each day so far and I have exercise every day except Monday. I ran on Tuesday and Wednesday and today I used the elliptical (and burned 520 calories!). I also did a little bit of work with weights on Tuesday, but not as much as I could/should have. Obviously, I need to work harder since I'm not losing any more weight yet. I need to get more exercise in for sure, and I will have to start doing that tomorrow.

I read an interesting article today about food commercials and weight gain. I know that personally, I can't stand most food commercials, because I think they are gross. They show greasy, fatty, calorie-heavy foods and portray them as something that people need or should want to eat. According to this article, these commercials contribute to making bad food decisions and to mindless snacking and munching. It suggests at least muting your TV during commercials, or even turning it off or fast forwarding through them. Those who watch less commercials weigh less and eat less. I didn't know it was possible to like food commercials less, but after reading this article, I never want to see one again. If you are conscious about what you put in your body, then you don't need such ads telling you what to eat. I know what I want, and I don't need someone telling me that I need or want this unhealthy food that will make me feel bad later and contribute to an unhealthy life. I will be avoiding such commercials in the future now that I've read this article. Here is the full article.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Manic Monday

It's Monday again! I can't decide if I'm happy for a new week or still pining for the weekend...I think I'll choose happy for a new week! Each Monday offers me a new start to live a healthier life than the last week. I was actually pretty successful last week, but I know I can do better.

My goal for the week is to exercise at least 6 days, and to eat around 1200-1500 calories each day. This is the key to losing weight. When your calories burned exceeds your calorie intake, that's the point at which you lose weight.

I found a good article about weight loss myths that I thought I would address. Here are the myths, and my take on them:
#1: Carbs cause you to get fat. NOT true. As I said above, calories in versus calories burned is the cause of weight loss or weight gain. Therefore carbohydrates alone are not the cause. That being said, carbs do contribute to the calorie count of any food/drink you take in. There are 4 calories in every gram of carbohydrates, so they are definitely a piece of the equation. And in carb-heavy foods, the calories can add up quickly. However, there are also 4 calories in every gram of protein and 9 calories in every gram of fat. Those are the 3 things that make up the calorie total. Since most foods have more carbs than protein and fat, carbs are the biggest contributor to the calorie total of what we eat, so they're definitely something that we need to monitor carefully.
#2: Drinking tons of water will make you lose tons of weight. NOT true. Again, water alone is not the cause. Drinking tons of water does not automatically cause weight loss, and it may even do the opposite if you easily gain water weight. It can also make you feel bloated and uncomfortable. What does water do? Several things. 1)It can help you cut down your calorie intake by replacing sodas or juices that contain calories. 2)It helps keep hunger at bay, making you less inclined to munch or overeat. This helps even more with calorie intake. 3)It helps keep you hydrated which gives you more energy. If you have more energy, you will feel better and you can do more in your workout to burn off those calories! So, water is great for weight loss, but too much is not so good. I usually try to shoot for the recommended amount (8 glasses per day), but some people need more or less, so just drink however much feel right to you.
That's all for today, but I will address some more later this week!
You can go here to see the article in full.

Stay fit!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Slow Progress

Last year when I got healthy, it didn't take long for the weight loss to follow. This time around, it doesn't seem to be working quite so well. Granted, I haven't been very consistent with working out. I was doing so well last week; I did some form of physical activity every day almost. Then the weekend came and I slacked off to begin with, and then I hurt myself so I couldn't work out. I didn't eat right this weekend either because I was upset about not being able to exercise, so I just ate like crazy. :-( I am over my injury now, so I am getting back on track, though. I ran again today with J, we went about 2 and a quarter miles, but did a bit more walking than running this time. It was really hot out today, so it seemed extra difficult. I also did some lunges as well. We are going to do more tomorrow though! I really need to get more weight-resistance work into my workouts. Doing lunges today was a start, but I need to incorporate that more often. Doing cardio gets rid of fat and starts weight loss, but doing weights creates shape. I know that a lot of women are afraid to lift weights because they don't want to get bulky, but I have done a lot of weight work before and I never bulked up. It creates lean muscle in women that really creates that fit shape that I want.

Also, I wanted to share my newest arrival: an elliptical machine! I am really excited to use it, especially since it has been really rainy here recently. I will be able to use it if I can't exercise outside, or if I don't want to go out in the heat or cold. There are a lot of different built in workouts too, so I can switch it up whenever I get bored with it. I am still trying to find a place that it can fit into at my house, but I'm sure I will fit it in soon.

I went to the grocery store today to stock up on more healthy food. I tried to get a balance of proteins and carbs. I got several combos such as apples and string cheese, eggs and cantaloupe, almond milk and cereal, tuna and mandarin oranges, and salmon and cucumber. I also found a new product this weekend. They are Newton's Fruit Crisps, found in the snack isle. I got the apple flavored ones, and they are SO good! With all these healthy snacks, I will have no trouble eating right and making myself more healthy.

I hope everyone has a great night! Stay fit!