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Friday, June 27, 2008

Summer Fitness

Hi friends! Those of you patient enough to keep reading even when the going gets tough (and the posts are fewer and farther between.)

I will now share all the new and exciting things I've been doing for my weight loss:



Silence.



Crickets chirping.




Ok. Let's talk about something else instead. Like how hard it is to lose weight for me during the summer! I am jealous of those whose summers are really slow, lazy and relaxing, and they just lose their appetites and eat nothing but berries and salads. Except not lazy enough to stop them from running 5 miles on the beach each morning or something like that.

Unfortunately, with my 2 kids, summers are pretty stressful. They get bored and mischievous, and even without the extra shenanigans, we just get sick of each other!! There are no breaks for me at all! Even at swimming lessons, I can't sit on the lounge chairs and read books like most moms, because out of desperation to get my money's worth, I've been THE SWIMMING LESSON NAZI- bribing, threatening and cajoling my daughter to let go of the wall & go participate with her class.

What else about summer? Let's see. The heat makes me grouchy, therefore I want to eat. All the above stress makes me want to eat. The vacations, bbqs, & frequent party atmospheres make me want to eat.

The stress level for me right now is so high, that I know it will be too hard for me to succeed if I just cut myself off from the coping method of eating. So I think I will refocus myself on exercise. I had been doing GREAT before swimming lessons started. I had been doing 4 classes a week at the gym all at 9:30 a.m. But since swimming is from 10 to 11, I have had a hard time finding a different time and getting into the groove again.

But I know it will help with all the stress if I can just make it work & for now that is the baby step I prefer to work on (rather than food-- what a nightmare I've been sitting on the couch with my bag of pretzels and baking cookies every other day). Sigh! We can do this!

Lastly, here are some pictures of my two sisters, me and my niece going on a walk near Bridal Veil Falls while I was visiting in Utah. This was my one victory in the attempts at being healthy. Good job me. Pat, pat. (on my back). :)


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Trip to the Land of Temptation

I did not check the scale before I left, and I didn't check it today. It's probably for the best, keeping in mind that we don't want to send me into a sobbing depressive spiral on my first day back.

Summing up the weight loss efforts on my trip: a couple of fast food meals & restaurant meals, and the ones I had at my mom's or sister's house were like "white bread, turkey, a few grapes, and a brownie." Oh and the wedding cake. That we had like 4 times because people kept wanting to get rid of all the leftovers. (My sister's reception was Thursday at my mom's home, and my step sister's wedding was Saturday at their home as well! My poor parents for having to host 2 big weddings at their home in one week!) And in the airport it was just a free-for-all of fattening, caloric food. I'm not trying to gross you out. I'm just letting you know what I've been dealing with!

But I did manage to drag my 2 sisters out for a walk. It was really nice, actually. We went up to the canyon where there is a trail next to some waterfalls, and we did intervals. I think the heart monitor said over 1000 calories burned.

I was sooooo happy today to head straight to Trader Joe's and restock our healthy food, and finally have some nutritious meals with a little more fiber and taste.

P.S. I really shouldn't make my trip sound like an awful trip. I wasn't able to eat as healthily as I do at home, but other than that, it was wonderful to be with my family and I was sans kids for 5 days!!!!!! I missed them, but it was like visiting a zen spa- so quiet and peaceful. You know? :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

975

Ok. I have changed my mind about putting numbers in the title. It is way too fun to keep raving about my calorie counting heart monitor. 975 is what I burned on the elliptical this morning for 50 minutes. I did intervals, and got my heart rate up pretty high with resting in between.

Yeah, posting my calories burned is way more impressive than weight lost (none.) So it makes me feel like I'm doing SOMETHING! Maybe the next step after this is actually posting calories consumed, but they don't make a watch yet that counts the calories that you put in your mouth. Maybe this is a brilliant idea for some techie/inventor. But it has to do it through osmosis, like a stomach strap. Adding them all up myself is just too much trouble.

I will be out of town for the next week, but I already have a walk scheduled with an old friend & I'm bringing the heart monitor! :) See you next week!

Monday, June 9, 2008

De-Tox

I have a headache!!!!!!!!!!

I had this secret goal (so secret, that I couldn't even tell the blogging audience)... it's just such a small goal & now I'm telling you. Between Sunday and Thursday (when I leave to go out of town to my sister's wedding,) I wanted to be dessert-free. It's now the end of Monday & I have done really well. I know I can do 2 more days because I feel so good about this small accomplishment.

But it's just interesting to me because I'm not restricting my portions & this headache feels the same as a hunger headache. But I'm full. I just ate a healthy dinner. The conclusion I've come to is that I'm de-toxing from sugar and refined flour. Withdrawal! Because I haven't given up caffeine, either. Just desserts for now.

I've also noticed that it's depleting my supply of will-power. I couldn't get myself into my spin class this evening. I don't want to break my exercise streak, so I'm hoping that getting myself into the kick boxing class tomorrow morning won't be so difficult. I wish it wasn't one or the other! I'd really like to keep exercising AND eating healthily.

I just wanted to ask anyone else if they felt withdrawal symptoms when they started eating healthier?

Thursday, June 5, 2008

834 (Just kidding. I'm not going to make my post titles into numbers from now on)

But it actually is the calorie amount that I burned today in my YOGA CLASS!!! I'm not kidding! Well, it's called Body Flow & it's a combination of Tai Chi, Yoga & Pilates. But I have to say I was quite pleased. I am digging this little heart monitor that figures this out for me. But I am not digging the deduction that if I'm consistently burning this many calories & still gaining weight, my eating is definitely more out of control than I care to admit. I'm not using a food tracking method at the moment. It feels like I would just get perfectionistic with it (like every time in the past) and then quit if I messed up. Setting myself up for failure.

But I know it's just another excuse. I'm not going to stop making excuses. I actually have a lot more where that came from. :) But I can at least evaluate the situation and let my subconscious work on the solution for a while. All the while trying not to eat the whole bag of pretzels this time while watching So You Think You Can Dance. :)

Monday, June 2, 2008

1376!!!!!!!!

= the amount of calories I just burned in my spin class!!!!!!!

Awesome! I was so excited I called my husband and bragged about it. It's the first time I wore my heart rate monitor in the class and used the calorie counting function. It bases your calories on your weight & heart rate, so I think it's pretty darn accurate.

I also just wanted to share my exercise goals with you. I have been having success on the program that Weight Watchers recommends, which is that they give you exercise points based on minutes you exercised, your weight and level of exertion. Based on this little quiz they gave me some weeks into the program, they said I was supposed to start at 8 exercise points per week, then go up one per week. I am now at 22 per week this week. I wanted to see if the exercise points translated over into calories burned. The WW slide rule says a spin class for me is 10 points, which should be roughly 1000 calories (100 per point, based on some random peoples' guessing... it's all I could find when I googled WW exercise points conversion into calories), but it turns out I burned a little more than 1000 calories.

So what I'm getting at is that my goal is going to be to keep building on that and burn 100 additional calories every week. So this week I'm measuring my exercise calories burned and seeing what that translates to when I shoot for 22 exercise points, then switch to calories burned next week. For example if I burn 2500 calories while getting 22 exercise points, my goal for next week will be 2600 calories burned.

I'm hoping this will help me keep progressing in my fitness and obviously drop weight, but what I've liked about this slow progression is that it stops me from burning myself out. I have had a habit in the past of going crazy with exercise, then getting sick or injured & everything comes to a screeching halt. Right now I'm in one of the longest unbroken exercise streaks I've been on since I started this blog, (knock on wood...), so I really do credit this system with keeping me from crashing & burning. Also, with exercise, I have this constant guilt. Just like when I was in school, I felt like I should constantly be studying because there was always more I could do. I was never finished. It was this horrible guilt that I lived with all the time. And since I have so much weight to lose, my brain says, "No, you can't take a day off. You need to be killing yourself until this weight is gone." And you can see the danger in that.

So now, when I've hit the WW exercise points goal for the week, I can feel good about myself and know I'm doing the correct thing for long-term fitness. Yes, I do tend to do the hardest classes early in the week to make sure I get all the points in, but I also consciously force myself to rest when I've hit my quota. Yay! Yay for exercising & burning 1376 calories, and yay for resting. :)