Adjusted Reality

“Reality can be beaten with enough imagination.” – Mark Twain

Month: July 2011 Page 1 of 2

Steady As She Goes – Nutritionist, Week 3

I’m not even sure if I have a whole post in me about this, but here goes (yeah, who am I kidding – I’m VERBOSE if nothing else…).

1.  We talked organic.  My question was, as she brought up organics a few times before, what was worth it, what wasn’t, etc.  She said her priorities were a) organic, grass fed beef, chicken, dairy as often as possible b) leafy vegetables as often as possible c) organic corn/soy/canola as often as possible d) veg/fruit without peels when it makes sense financially, otherwise wash well e) not waste time money on other things like organic fruits/veg with a peel, or other products like organic beans, organic cake, organic salad dressing, etc.

2.  We talked genetically modified crops.  Genetically modified crops are great for the environment because they have internal changes to their DNA that makes them bug resistant and drought resistant and easier to grow.  However, they also have been shown to cause tumors and stomach issues and other bad juju (the highly technical term, yes).  Apparently 90-95% of corn in existence now is GMO (that includes corn starch, corn syrup, corn tortillas, and just… corn).  As above, as much as possible, 100% organic corn and corn products.

3.  We talked electrolytes and during-workout fueling.  Basically, the good news is I’ve been feeling so good with the fueling and dietary changes, I’ve been increasing my mileage again.  However, this means I’ve been outside in the hot sun doing 1.5 – 2 hour rides and runs in the high 80s.  And I’ve just been doing it with water, and I’ve been feeling awesome because of the new fueling plan, but some articles I’ve read lately about heat sickness scare me.  The new plan is anytime I go over an hour, I incorporate coconut water.  For rides, I’ll put it in my under-the-bike bottle and use my camelback for water.  For runs I’ll just mix it half and half with my camelback.  It will be interesting to try out, I’ll let y’all know how it goes.

4.  We talked progress.  While I’ve felt major improvements in my energy, workouts, and just how I feel, and maaaaaaaybe a little progress in how my pants fit, the scale is STUCK.  I stressed that I’m in it for the long haul and am not trying to be impatient, I just want to make sure nothing is WRONG.  She said that YES, absolutely it’s normal, she would be a little freaked out if I was seeing significant changes on the scale.  My body is very confused right now with the changes, and she said the general course and cycle of things is that I’ll be stagnant for the first 4-6 weeks, and then the weight will start dropping off.   By the end of August, she said I should see about 5 lbs lost, but to not expect much before.  I have a couple of future type questions about how my body will know to stop losing without tweaking calorie counts and if I can actually screw this up staying on plan and eating too much, but I’ll collect the info and let you know at the next installment!

A few other small Q&As we had over email:

Q. How to thicken soups/chilis without flour/cornmeal?  A. Rice starch/flour.  Use the least amount possible.

Q. How much is a serving of grains? A. Less than you’d think.  1/2 cup is a true serving of pasta.  Also, 1/2 of a whole wheat wrap is also a serving.

Q.  What’s a good quick lunch/dinner in a pinch if I have to go frozen. A.  Anything Amy’s.  High quality ingredients and no science-y stuff on the list.

So the plan going forward is:

-New fueling plan with long runs/bikes
-When I go grocery shopping next, lean towards organics especially in meats, milks, and leafy stuff
-Continue with the way I’m eating now.  For reference, here is a normal day in Quixy-land:

Day: Tuesday, July 26
Wake Up: 7:20am
Workout Fuel?: 1/2 coffee light honeymilk/1/2 chocolate light honeymilk (7:30/9:30)
Morning Meal/time: smoothie (1 scoop whey protein, 3/4 banana, 1 cup pineapple, 1/2 cup cherries, 1 tbsp pb) (10 am)
Mid-day Meal/time: schezuan chicken from Bamboo Bistro (takeout chinese – chicken broccoli, carrots, onions, in sauce) w/half cup brown rice (12:30)
Snack/time: 12 almonds 3pm, apple 5pm, carrots/tzatziki, 6pm, string cheese 7:30pm
Evening Meal/time: 1 small whole wheat tortilla crisped in pan w/whipped butter, topped with shredded chicken, beans, cheese, salsa, greek yogurt, lettuce, and hot sauce.  Small extra bowl with some chicken, beans, cheese, lettuce, yogurt, and salsa. (8:15pm)
Water: 90 oz
Other Drinks: La Croix Lime
Activity (what/how long): 8 miles ran, 1:28 (sooooo hot…soooo slow)
Relaxation (what/time): 3 hours tv/internet
Sleep: 11 pm

I got to eat both takeout chinese, a crap ton of snacks, and a fried tostada. ::grin::  There is nothing really wrong with this way of eating.  I’m still bitter about the lack of sandwiches but I have a feeling that will be my once a week splurge.

I’m to continue to food journal (as above), and submit them to her to look over on a weekly basis, but my next appointment isn’t until August 25th.  So from here on out, I’ll continue updating on Thursdays, but it will be just a check in.  As much as it’s expensive and a bit out of my day to see her, I’ll kinda miss the weekly sessions.

Also, she’s going to make me a fueling plan for my upcoming races once I get closer.  How cool is that?

In summary, the experience has been awesome.  As I admitted to her today that if I was doing this on my own, and hadn’t seen progress right now, I’d be getting SUPER antsy and would have certainly given up before the end of next month.  I’m very happy having someone reassure me that it’s the right thing to do.  I mean, my energy and how I feel is definitely encouraging, but I know I’m above the weight I should be at.  Jiggly bits don’t lie.

How are your jiggly bits (or lack thereof).  What do you think of my daily grind?  If you could ask a nutritionist one question, what would you ask?

Age 32.45 Life Lessons

I had a discussion with a coworker about management, and how sometimes it was taking your knocks and having experience, rather than just sheer talent, to make someone succeed.   It got me thinking, first about work lessons I’ve learned, but also about my obsessive hobby of racing and just life in general.  Figured it couldn’t hurt both as perhaps words of wisdom to others, or to come back to in 5 years and laugh about how silly I was.  Random quips, quotes, and observations ahead.

On the construction outside our window at work:

-There is only one diggy thing, and one pushy thing.  (Apparently that’s the technical term that came out of my mouth for bulldozer and crane).

Ok, seriously, onto the actual non herp-de-derp brain drippings…

On running/tris/racing:

-You will wax and wane.  At your peak, you will wonder how this mileage/speed/training was ever hard.  You will be standing at the top of that mountain, looking down, and feel the glorious feeling of being able to conquer all.  After rest and recovery, you’ll look at that daunting task of getting back to where you were as if you’re at the bottom of the mountain, looking up.  You’ll wonder how you climbed that mountain, and wonder if you have it in you again.  Always know that you have it in you if you put in the effort.

-Going from a front 1/3 of the pack to back of the pack racer in a different sport is a humbling but awesome experience.  It makes you remember that first time you ran a 5k, and were just so thrilled to finish, and found that fire in your belly saying “if I can finish, next time I can do better…”

-Getting beat as a 32 year old by a 67 year old friend is also humbling but awesome.  At first, it’s “wtf, HE beat me”, but then realizing that if you’re good to your body, you have 30+ good years of racing in you…. epic.  Until I met those folks, I had a ridiculous misconception that I better squeeze my racing into the next few years because it’s downhill from here… SO not true.

-Setting out a training plan and following it to race day is one of the most rewarding things you can do.  Having the knowledge that you are SO ready is a great confidence booster, no matter what the race outcome.  On the flipside, having a race where you just wing it and end up with a PR – awesome as well.  Sometimes rolling the dice pays off.

-Dream big.  If you can follow a training plan, the adrenaline and crowds will pull you through race day.  I went from 10k to a half in 3 months.  I spent about 6 months building from never swimming or biking to an olympic tri.  You build the miles, and then kiss the sky hoping you can pull it all together on race day.

-There is nothing wrong with a good cry after a bad race.  Just make sure it’s accompanied by a plan to go forward and make sure it doesn’t happen again.  Also, make sure it’s actually a bad race (ahem, GG 5k where I placed in the top 20% and my shitty time was because it was a long and hilly course) before you get all emo.

-All training sessions teach you something, no matter how shitty, mediocre, or awesome they are.  Listen carefully and you’ll progress faster.

-Keeping a training log is invaluable.  Being able to have a record of what worked (and probably more importantly what DIDN’T work) is key to be able to replicate.

-Slow and easy miles should be for a reason (read: not the majority of your training), but they have value at times.  To improve, you need at least one butt kicking, deity seeing, religion inducing training session per week at each discipline.

-Take stepback weeks/months.  You can’t be a rockstar 52 weeks of the year.  Find your base you’re unwilling to go below (for me, I need to be able to bust out a 10k, ride 15 miles, and swim a mile at any time – not together) and don’t be afraid to spend some time there to recover in off season.

-Take a moment at how AWESOME you are in comparison to 99% of the world.  No matter how you placed in your last race, you got out there.  Which is more than most fuckers can say.

On Management:

-You have to pay your dues to understand sometimes.  If you have a great manager that makes a questionable decision once in a while, give them the benefit of the doubt.  Management has so much nuance in navigating egos and politics and compromise that you can’t please everyone all the time.  However, you can attempt to do what’s right for your team and your product, and sometimes that means pissing people off.

-A manager doesn’t have to explain their decisions t0 anyone below them.  However, a good manager will explain their decisions to their staff as often as they can, and rely on “because I said so” only in the most direst of times.

-You can rule with love or fear.  Both are fully valid management styles, and just depends on the individual.  As long as the end goal of respect is met, it works.

-You should always be a filter/translator between your boss and your employees.  Sometimes people at the end of both spectrum say one thing and mean another.  It is your job to be fluent in both languages and communicate what’s needed.

-Taking responsibility for mistakes is something you have to suck up and do.  Both ways – to your employees and to your bosses.  A simple, “I’m sorry, I fucked up, and this is how we’re going to fix it” is a good way to start the goodwill flowing back your way.

-Never throw someone under the bus unless it’s the last option and/or they REALLY deserve it.  I’ve seen careers ruined and I’ve ruined careers because of it.  The better line is as above. “We fucked up, and this is how we’re going to fix it” rather than “THEY fucked up and they suck”.

-Never stop trying to make things better.  Even if your pitches continue to fall on deaf ears, it’s a great learning experience.  Always continue to refine the process.  Never say “eh, it’s good enough”.

-When something falls apart, nurse your wounds, drink heavily, curse the heavens, and then analyze.  What went wrong?  What can we do to fix it?  Try to never make the same mistake twice.

-The cheapest morale builder is a good solid “Thank you for your hard work”.  Call out what is awesome publicly.  Deal with what is not awesome privately or anonymously.

-Give people the benefit of the doubt as much as you can while keeping your project moving.  Don’t nitpick.  Realize that everyone has their own work style.  As long as they make their deadlines, and upper management is off your back, it’s fine.

-Defend your team to upper management if needed.  They may be too removed from the process to realize that the dude who is always up and walking around is 3 days ahead of schedule, he just needs that time to clear his head.  Don’t just be a puppet for the owners/execs.  You have the unique insight into both venues, use it.  Likely, you’ll be respected for it by both.

-Take some time to enjoy and appreciate your product.  If you don’t believe in it, then you’re doing something wrong.

-Abuse your power just a little every once in a while.  Send someone out to grab your lunch when you don’t feel like it.  Take a 30 minute break to grab tea.  Lounge in someone’s office and BS for 15 mins if you need a break.  Spend some time talking shit with other managers.  It’s the little things.

-Have confidence.  If you’re making a successful product and have a fairly happy team, even if you have self doubt and insecurity, you’re doing it right.

On Life:

-Waxing and waning.  You’re going to have money, or you won’t.  You’ll feel on top of the world, or you’ll feel low.  Whatever it is, it will probably pass.  Enjoy it while you have it, attempt to preserve it as long as you can, but shit happens.  Life happens.  Don’t spend your time pining for what you used to have, go out and get what you want.

-Save your fucking money.  As soon as you can after you recover from being a broke ass college student, put away a nest egg that can keep you going for a few months if shit hits the fan.

-Take vacations.  Leave home and explore.  Turn off your phone, get away from email, tv, everything.  I promise, no matter what you do, life can handle itself for a little while without you monitoring.

-Do stupid irresponsible shit sometimes.  Sure, staying up until sunrise drinking might not be SMART, but it’s likely it will be an EVENT.  You’ll probably learn something.  Maybe that something is drinking until sunrise is DUMB, but likely not just that.   I’ve found that sunrise is a very epiphany making experience.

-Let your arguments end with giggles about how dumb you are for arguing.

-Marry your best friend.  If you enjoy the company of your friends more than your fiance, you’re doing it wrong.

-If you’re at a fancy dinner, order whatever the fuck you want and enjoy it.  No guilt.  You don’t get filet mignon or crab w/drawn butter every day.

-If you find that you’re not the person you want to be, change.  It is just that simple.  Give yourself time, forgiveness, leeway, patience, and the power of research, but figure out where you want to be and make a plan to get there.  If you’re unhappy to the point where you’re contemplating giving up, do something drastic (perhaps, if you’re miserable where you live, up and move to a new town).  If you are so miserable you have nothing to lose, try something that can have an awesome return.

-If you find something you have passion for, dig in and embody that passion.  Even if it fades or doesn’t work out, you have experienced something beautiful and probably learned a lot.

-Be a good person.  Try to keep karma on your side.  If you try to do the good thing most of the time, you’ll find life is forgiving when bad happens to you.  Even in those situations, if you are a genuinely good person, things will turn out alright.

-Don’t worry so much about what the world thinks of you.  Be who you are.  If you are truly happy with yourself, in your own skin, the people who matter will love you.  Your quirks are probably endearing to them.

-Dance, sing, love, laugh, play, and never forget what it was like to be young.  Lay in the grass, throw snowballs, make funny faces at people, make up words, and generally don’t let whimsy pass you by.  Basically, when these things seem dumb to you, a little bit of your soul dies.  Remember how to have silly, simple, uncomplicated fun.

…and there you have it.  Totally random pearls of widsom from moi (just as random as my pictures).  Please share with me in the comments what your life lesson to the world would be!

Hunkering Down – Nutritionist, Week 2

The last week has been interesting.  I started with WIDE! EYED! OPTIMISM! ready to change my world ONE MEAL AT A TIME and I was gung ho and dedicated and excited with shiny new guidelines and pen and paper food journaling and no calorie counts.

A week has passed now, and I can report:

-Energy levels – WAY up.  I can chalk it up to the second week on the stupid early morning schedule, or workout fueling, but I am no longer a puddle of worthless after 4-5pm.  I even had a wee bit of trouble sleeping on Monday night for 30-60 mins.  I definitely have a lot more in the tank.  I increased my long run to 7 miles this week and short bike to 45 mins (14 miles) and don’t feel NEARLY as beat as I did last week with less.

-I can get down with this method of snacking, fueling, and breakfasting.  This works in my life.  The lack of GNAWING hunger ever is a pretty good trade off with eating good foods.  Not coming to work and wanting to eat my desk after a run and being able to chew through as many snacks as I want without guilt is just *bliss*.  I slipped up on snacks on these occasions: 4-5 ruffles chips, 1/2 serving of ramen, 2 squares of chocolate, a few pita chips.  All but one chocolate were Zliten handing me food.  I guess I should get better at saying no.  Hmmm…

Now that the wide eyed enthusiasm has worn off, it’s time to HUNKER DOWN.  Three weeks from now, when it’s old news, I need to remember why this all matters.  It’s time to dig in my heels, follow the program, and channel all the patience and power I have to get on the bus and keep it rolling.  It’s that second month of half marathon training when it’s no longer NEW and EXCITING, and not near enough to the race to get excited about that, you just have to get out there, and put in the miles, even if it sounds like the least exciting thing in the world.

This week’s lesson at the nutritionist – controlling blood sugar.

She started with a weight watchers story.  One lady she was seeing had been doing WW and strictly stuck to the program, and was not losing any weight.  When asked what she ate, she said 2 points for breakfast, 2 for lunch, and 28 for dinner.  Elaborating – she ate a 90 calorie lemon cake (with 30 grams of sugar) for breakfast, the same for lunch, and then went WILD at dinner.  Stuck to the point count, but ate no quality food.  Obviously, this is an extreme, but I know I’ve had pretty shitty nutrient weeks but just kept it in calorie range.

She has this cheesy picture of a happy girl surrounded by fruit, veggies, milk, nuts, brown rice, beans, fish, and chicken, and an unhappy girl surrounded by hostess and nestle’s finest. 🙂  The happy girl has blood sugar that is even and her cells are working normally.  The unhappy girl has too much sugar in her blood, which means the cells aren’t taking in enough nutrients, and excess blood sugar leads to bad things like heart disease and diabetes and the world being dominated by small ant creatures – in other words, mass hysteria, dogs and cats living together, etc etc.

When you have a lot of blood sugar, your body releases a lot of insulin.  Insulin is the number 1 producing fat hormone because it increases adipose.  So the fatty meats and simple sugars make your blood sugar spike, making the cells not function properly and take in the right things, and they become inflamed and inefficient.  Constant abuse can lead to tumor growth, heart disease, diabetes, and mass hysteria as above.

She is very happy with my breakfast, fueling, and snacking, and that I’ve been so ok with letting go of the calorie counting.  I slip a lot and say calories, but I’m more trying to convey size than value.  And to be honest, if I don’t have a daily goal for calories, 150 calories means nothing to me.  It’s really freeing!

Alternatively, I said that I found my tendency to snack has gone UP.  I recounted one day where I ate like a crap ton of beef jerky because I was just HUNGRY expecting to get the “eh, well, that’s a little much”, and she said “and you ate it, your blood sugar didn’t go up, and you went on with your day.  Awesome.”

I’m not sure I buy in 100% that keeping my blood sugar even will be the silver bullet, but I’ll go with it.  It makes sense that it has a part to it, I just feel odd without a quantity limit, like I can do myself in there.

But, it’s definitely something different.  I need different because obviously nothing “same” is working. 😛

My mission, if I choose to accept it, is to work on these 3 things:

1.  Considering my blood sugar each time I eat.  Is what I’m putting in my mouth going to have no effect (protein, fats), a small, reasonable effect (veggies, fruits, beans), a larger, but still reasonable effect in moderation (potatoes, unprocessed grains like brown rice, barley, quinoa, etc), or will spike it (white bread, pasta, sugar, anything with flour).

2.  Reducing the number of grains.  Each meal, I’m supposed to have about half of what I normally would.  If I’d normally have a cup of rice, have half a cup.  If I’d have a sandwich with two slices of bread, eat it open faced.  I am to replace with beans, nuts, or extra veggies/fruit to hunger.

3.  Single Ingredients.  I’m *pretty* decent about this, but I am to focus on putting together meals that either come from single ingredients, or if packaged, have less than 8 (give or take – if it’s got 10 good quality ingredients, then sure, if it has 5 crappy, then no, but as a general rule).  Half my cart is normally produce anyway, but it will be an interesting reality check when I go shopping this week and check out all my normal foodstuffs.

It will be interesting.  A challenge for sure, but I’m up for it.  While it’s not as hard as that cleanse, it’s definitely more challenging than counting calories.  If anyone has some damn fine barley, quinoa, or bean recipes, I’d love to hear ’em!!!

Chugga Chugga Chooo Chooo (Here comes the train-ing):

I’ve also noticed that my training lately befits an Olympic tri (20+ mile rides, 10k+ runs).  I’m extending the run to prep for the See Jane Run half, but also the theory/strategy if I’m used to long runs in the heat, a 5k will be easy peasy (of course, with some major short speedwork closer to the race so I don’t forget how).  I want to get some quality bike miles in while it’s warm enough (last year I pretty much put the bike away Oct – March, cold wind is not my buddy) and we have lofty goals of a century (100 miles) in the first half of next year.  I think getting to 50 before I have to retreat to the stationary for good is a good start.  I have 30 on the plan this weekend.

…but this makes me think.  I can probably PR an Olympic this year with my eyes closed if I continue to heat train.  Mebbe I finds a race and wing it.  If Zliten won’t kill me too much since I said I was staying short this year.

There are two reasons I wanted to stay short – #1 so I can train with Zliten, and #2 because I was afraid of gaining more with distances (since that’s what’s been going down lately).  Well, #2 is out the window since I’m on this new program, and #1?  Getting up in the morning is way less impactful to get in the long runs/bricks, the swim portion is 30-60 mins max and not anything I’m worried about, and he’s down with the long bikes together.

Definitely a consideration… or maybe I just enjoy long runs and bikes for the sake of just base building and actually getting out and enjoying the summer this year for the first time instead of retreating to the gym for 3-4 months.

So, any good recipes? Olympic tri or stick with sprints?  Think my lady person is sane or crazy for trying to make me go low grain?

Observations and Experiences

Mid-first week observations:

-Holy cow, so much more energy with honeymilk pre and post workouts!  I accidentally got the regular, not the light, but I halved my breakfast to compensate.  Still felt WAY full.  This is amazing.  Workout fuel that isn’t breakfast – who knew?

-Stevia drops are THA BOMB. Four in my yogurt and two in my La Croix (it made SODA!!!) this morning and I have no use for honey anymore.

-Made my first protein smoothie ever on Saturday.  1 scoop whey protein (vanilla), 3/4 banana, 1 cup frozen cherries, 1 tbsp better ‘n pb (and ice and a little water).  It took me an HOUR to down my concoction and I was so friggin full.  These will probably make an appearance every once in a while.  I DID miss the mastication – so it won’t be every day, but it was a nice change.

-I like all my snacks, I’ve stuck to them for the most part (minus 5 chips one day, and a 1:30am drinking ramen slipup).  I miss pretzels, but being able to have string cheese, almonds, or jerky any time I want is pretty sweet.

-Interested in what will be on the lunch and dinner good list next week.  If it’s just protein and veggies, I’m going to cry.  I’ve been trying to think of carbs that are not grains and so far I’ve thought of potatoes, beans, and corn tortillas.  I can probably get down with more of that action.  We’ll see what happens.

-Not necessarily related to food, but I’m actually really enjoying the 7am wakeups.  Ok, not the actual wakeups (that sucks) but the rest of the day after.  It’s nice to get the workouts done in the morning, and the earlier, the cooler it is.  75 is much different than 82-85.  I’m going to try to go for the same schedule next week (Mon: 45 mins bike hills and crunchtime – this will be my only PM, Tues: 7 miles AM, Wed: 45 mins full body weights, 30 mins swim, Thurs: off, Fri: 45 mins of sprints at the track, and Sat: 30 mile bike ride).

Since I don’t have all that much to talk about right now, and this weekend was pretty much blissfully boring (read: relaxing), let me share some pictures of weekends past that I’ve been meaning to share.

Keep Austin Weird 5k (6/25):

Pretty sweet shirt… did the kids L trick, it’s a *wee* bit small.  Hoping it’s comfy soon.  Go go new nutrition plan!

We biked down (10 miles, added to the 10 miles that morning), and then walked around the festival.  This puppy was definitely weird and awesome!

This is about the weirdest we could get upon short notice.  And getting there in 95 degree weather on a bike.

Zliten is pretty weird to begin with, so he didn’t have far to go! 🙂

About half a mile in, there was a wine stop.  I got chardonnay.  It seemed to pair well with walking on a 95 and humid day better than red.

Then vodka and lemonade stop.  Who needs sport-aid type stuff?  There was also an ice cream stop, and a pizza stop, but they ran out of pizza by the time we got there.  Bummer!  We were pretty starving by then!

In just under 1 hour, we crossed the finish.  I think we jogged about .05 of a mile just to do it and then stopped.  SLOWEST 5k EVAR!!! 🙂  We then grabbed our bikes, left, tried to catch the bus (we do not yet have the proper night lights), bus didn’t come for over an hour, called a cab, bus FINALLY came but we were half a block down from the stop, cab never came, so we walked our bikes to a bar a few blocks away and grabbed dinner.  We finally ended up calling a friend who went to our house, grabbed our bike rack, drove down, got us and our bikes, and brought us home around 2am.  Sigh.  Transportation fail, but a fun adventure!  The only two bus fails we’ve had have both been at THAT corner, so I think next time we’ll just try to hop the bus elsewhere even if it’s a little further.  Or… just get the night lights.

The next day, after doing a small amount of work and recovering from a bit of a hangover, we headed to the Dell Diamond and took in a Round Rock Express game!  Here’s me sporting the hat we got for a dollar last year from spinning the wheel 0 prizes.  It was good fun, and lots of yummy munching on ballgame food (chili cheese fries and chicken strips were dinner, oops).  The Express won 14-2, so it was honestly kind of a boring game, but it was good times anyway.

Fast forward two weekends, and we went to see Judah Friedlander (from 30 Rock) at Cap City.  Man oh man, he was funny.  I had no idea what to expect, I figured self depricating geek humor, but no… just the opposite.  He is the World Champion (of what?  uh… of the World, hello…) and just played off the audience.  You ride a bicycle?  I rode one AROUND THE WORLD.  In 5 hours.  Yeah.  Good times!  Here is where he was knocking Zliten out.

He, however, did not beat me up.  Which was nice.

This week, Zliten worked a lot of hours.  The leezard missed him.  Here is some cuddle time!

And this is where I’ve been spending my Friday mornings.

That’s all.  I’ll check in later this week!

Nutritionista (or Nothing Shocking..Yet)

So, my first appointment was today.

I was NERVOUS.  Weird, right?  I figured she was either going to tell me I was eating perfect and I should be losing weight OR that everything I ate was wrong and I need to eat everything different.  Or that she was going to tell me to eat babies.  Just playing out the worst case scenarios in my head.  The game of “what if”, so to speak.

It was neither, of course.  I’m a little nervous about what the plan is, but actually excited, and the most important thing is it makes sense.

The first thing we went over is the drinking and smoking.  I talked about how I only smoke socially with a drink, and that the idea of smokes when I’m sober is revolting, but I also very much freak out at the idea of never smoking again.  I also made sure that she knew I was willing to give up some things, but my once a week night out/in having drinks was not one of them.  She understood.

Then, we discussed my workout schedule.  She was happy with the amount and quality of them (especially when I mentioned that this is kinda base and it gets crazy from here), and she simply asked that I try to stay consistent and do my workouts in the mornings for the time being while we play with my dietary intake.  It’s what I’ve generally been doing, so no biggie.

We discussed calories in, calories out.  She said that sure, it had worked for me before because it was such a drastic shift to the healthy (eating less amounts of crap is better than eating more amounts of crap), but when you get to a point where you’re trying to take off very little weight like I am, it just doesn’t hold true any more.  She said calories are not even anything for me to think about.  Freeeeeedom!  She said later, we’d discuss where to splurge and where to hold firm after we’ve established what I *should* be doing, so I’m interested.

We discussed this week’s dietary changes.

#1 Pre-post workout fuel.  I MUST eat or drink one of these things immediately before and after my workout (half before, half after): 16 oz milk, 1 bottle of honeymilk light, or 1 cup of yogurt.

#2 Breakfast.  Continue with what I’m doing with some small changes. (Always be at or over 12-15g protein)

a) Stick with my fage, fruit, oats, and honey concoction, but switch to liquid stevia from a dropper.  She swore up and down that this sort of stevia is basically just a plant oil, and wouldn’t go against my “no artificial sweetner” rule.

b) To change it up occasionally, I can have my turkey sausage, cheese, and sprouted grain english muffin, but only have half the muffin and extra turkey sausage to make sure I’m at least at 15g.

c) Try a whey protein smoothie – whey protien, a banana, some extra fruit, and some pb.

d) Protein bars as a major major last minute backup (e.g. this would be better than no breakfast within 45 mins)

Also, for now, make sure to ALWAYS eat breakfast like this, even on the weekend.  No “saving calories” for a bigger lunch.  Because… I’m no longer counting calories.

#3 Snacks

She mostly liked what I was doing but told me to cut out the pretzel/chip crap and use this handy/dandy list of things that I have already been eating most of the time anyway:

veggies+hummus (or tzatziki)
string cheese
whole fruit
beef jerky
turkey pepperoni
edamame + sea salt* (not something I’ve been eating but a new suggestion)

Again, with the permission to eat any of these in any amounts that I want, I don’t see a problem.  Yeah, I pretty much did a happy dance here too.  The only thing that she asked was to watch the nuts and stick to one serving.

So yeah, snack when I’m hungry, more fuel in the morning.  I’m pretty happy with this.

However, she warned me.  She wanted to SEVERELY reduce my grains.  I kinda felt like this…

I protested, and she said that she wasn’t going to eliminate CARBS, but grains.  I still protested (I seriously think that I will DRAG ASS all day and feel awful), but then she taunted me with this:

If I can stick with the plan, she thinks I can probably take the weight off within 3 months, and by then it will feel normal.  She said 8 weeks, but I’m going to say 3 months and be pleasantly surprised.  Hell, if I’m making decent progress in 3 months, I’ll be happy.  She also promised me that my times will improve.  If I feel weak and it sucks for my workouts, we’ll switch stuff around.  She said feeling stronger was the goal – not eating so little that it makes me weak.

The thing that makes me feel good about it is it seems to be the way SHE eats, and it obviously works because she is fit and healthy (and also a runner, teaches classes, etc, so she knows what I’m up against, she’s not a little waif that does nothing active and eats 1200 calories).  I know that everyone is different, but it’s a good start trying something that is OBVIOUSLY working for someone.  It was always suggesting “this is one thing *I* like to do”, so it’s not that she’s suggesting lots of crazy things she wouldn’t do.  And… no calorie restrictions.  Just good, well timed food. Just… eep… less grains.

To which I thought about on the drive back to work, and y’know, there are a lot of things I thought I couldn’t do.  Four years ago, the way I eat now would have been such a shock to the system, I would have probably told future Quix to stuff it, if being healthy is that much work I’ll be fat, thxuverymuch (but now – live it. love it.)  Three months ago, I never thought I could give up diet soda, but I don’t drink it or rarely have the desire to do so.  Maybe three months from now, I’ll be laughing about how freaked out lessening grains is making me.

But hey, I don’t even have to face it for another week.  Just consistency in workout times, working fueling, breakfast, and snacks.  And good old fashioned pen and paper food journaling (no portion control, no calories, just writing down what/when I eat/exercise/sleep).

So, here is taxicab (taxiblog?) confessions time peeps.  Somehow in this weird existence of denial I have, I started this “ritual” where I would stand on the scale a few different ways and take the lowest.  Then, my subconscious decided that she would just weigh the way that gave the lowest weight.  For some reason, past Quix thought this was an acceptable way to weigh herself.  That’s been many months in the making, and this week, I decided that I was going to weigh myself on the scale like a normal human (feet normally, not off to the side).  I’m sad to say that it’s a bit more than I thought it would be.  So resetting, I will post my low weight of the past week which is…

173.8.  Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.  Seriously, how did I think that standing on a certain part of the scale would change what is going on in my body, but I guess I still have those “hide my head in the sand” urges that I did when I just bought XXL stretchy band skirts instead of facing my real size.

Oh well.  No mas.  I’m staring down that 173.8, eye to eye, armed with a plan, and ready to take that bitch down.  Even if that bitch is part of me.

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