Adjusted Reality

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

Month: March 2016 (Page 1 of 2)

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Offseason

Whew, life.

And, let’s actually tell it how it is.  I made this much progress on a blog post between Monday morning and Tuesday at 6pm.

whew

So there’s that.  Today seems to have calmed down, so let me share some random things about life, liberty (from training), and the pursuit of (offseason) happiness.

On the water…

Mar30-2

I finally got out to the water to paddleboard.  It made my heart happy.  I seriously felt lighter after I got back from being out on the lake.  I may love running, I may love(/hate/love) cycling, but there is nothing that feels more at home than the water.

I’ve signed up for a swimming distance challenge at Quarry Lake.  Every first Saturday morning, we swim a lap further than we swam the month before.  At first I hesitated doing it because blah blah scheduling blah blah fear blah blah bullshit and then I decided “fuck that” and signed up to go swim in the lake that makes me happy.  I’ll figure out how to get around the lake 4 times in June when I haven’t actually been training and how the 9am Saturday time is going to affect my training schedule later.  For now, I’ll just go do it.

Besides the annoyance of stuffing my body in my wetsuit like a sausage casing, I’m actually really looking forward to it.

On Camping…

Mar30-1

We haven’t been camping in 2 years, because, frankly, it’s a lot of effort.  You pack up everything you fucking need to survive for a few days down to water and tools to make fire, and then once you’re done you have to CLEAN UP all that crap.  When you’re training, you worry about being rested enough to do the planned session on questionable sleep.  So, we’ve considered it a bunch of weekends and then just could not be bothered.

One of the goals for this offseason was to camp a lot because camping is awesome.  First up was Sherwood Forest Faire with the clan.  We had Friday off work, so our goal was to attend the faire Friday, camp overnight, and then come home Saturday.  However, we got the weeks mixed up and they weren’t open, so we changed our plans to 2 nights and with a short trip to the store a few miles away we were set.  It was a great call.  Instead of rushing through the faire, we spent an afternoon just relaxing with our books, talking with people we didn’t know but since we were all Mug and Flame it didn’t matter, and enjoying the fact that my cell phone did not have ANY reception.

Over the two days, there was beer drinking and chatting with new and old friends and wandering around the campsites at two in the morning and finding a tiki bar with a dance floor where we danced for hours at the pleasure of the Easter Bunny.  There was dressing up like a gypsy, walking about 10 miles in 24 hours without really meaning to, seeing a man unhorsed in the joust, and finding Zliten the perfect mug.  There was fried olives, ogre toes (candied bacon wrapped in sausage wrapped in bacon), hot dogs cooked over an open flame, and a spectacular chicken gyro.  There was also a similarly spectacular garlic pickle, a bunch of salad, and fruit.

One thing that epitomizes these vibe here is our buddy that came out Saturday morning, and just started cooking up breakfast tacos for everyone.  Anyone who wanted them.  Around dark, he fired up the grill again and threw on a massive amount of hamburgers for everyone, and then took off for the night.  He wasn’t even camping.  He just came to feed us and hang out.  Another person works for a brewery and brought 12 cases of beer for anyone that wanted it.  These are just two small examples of what the situation is here.  These people are <3.

All that chillaxing + no screens besides a kindle + fun of being at the faire + nature and some beautiful weather made my little black burned out heart grow two sizes.  Sure, it’s taken 3 days to get everything put away and my floor is still gritty from tracking in dirt, but my soul is pleased.  So much so, that we immediately came home and looked around to find another place to camp next weekend.  We’re heading up north a bit for two nights to a place with a beautiful lake, great cycling, and amazing trails.  I just ordered a portable hammock.  I cannot wait.

On the number of the scale…

Mar30-3

As for #projectraceweight, I did what I could.  Monday through Thursday, I maintained 1200-1300 calories per day.  Camping, I brought a bunch of healthy food and reasonably low calorie beverages, and stuck mostly to those.  My lunch at the faire was a chicken pita with ziki sauce and veggies.  For dinner, I ate 1/3 a big salad, half an orge toe, and 10 fried olives.  My eating was not perfect, but definitely was in the realm of acceptable.  The drinking was a little more than I had planned, but I didn’t go crazy (I did not have to take a 3 hour nap to sober up in the middle of the day this time…).

I was unpleasantly surprised to come back to an INSANE number on the scale on Monday, but I’m back down to normal-ish ranges today so no harm, no foul.  Our next camping excursion will be solo instead of a massive group, more relaxing instead of staying up all night partying with friends, and about enjoying a beautiful space away from everything instead of a booth with fried everything.

I must keep on keepin’ on.  2 weeks down, 14 to go.  There is still time for my body to get with the program.

On the body and mind healing…

Here’s my step activity since the marathon (no, March 16th wasn’t a day in bed, I just left my fitbit on the nightstand :P).

activity

I have done zero things from March 5th to March 29th at noon (my first run) to get active beyond walking and taking the cruiser bike out a few times, and you can see as the weeks go by, as my body (and brain) heals, I get more and more active just naturally.  I’ve never taken enough time completely off and watched this process grow organically, it’s been fascinating to just actually want to move more not premeditated by a training plan.

We do the 10/20 race every year, and even though it fell during offseason, we signed up.  As proved at the marathon (grumble grumble), I have the capacity to walk 10 miles if need be, and I wanted to participate.  As it’s gotten closer, I’ve been cursing that decision because I honestly hadn’t felt like lacing up my hokas.  Like, at all.  With my disaster bike experience 2 weeks before the marathon and the disappointing run season, I had zero desire to thrust myself back into either of those sports right now.

But, sometimes we need a poke and a prod to remember that underneath all these numbers and training plans and gear and racing for PRs and junk, we do this because we love to move our bodies outdoors.  And the thought of running 10 miles Sunday forced me into my shoes yesterday for 3 to make sure I remembered how to run after 3.5 weeks.

The good news:

Easy pace is still easy pace.  I don’t think I have hard pace right now, but our mid-11s pace is still fun and conversational.  I didn’t slow down to, like, 13s or anything.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it would definitely show significant regression for me.

Running is still enjoyable.  I’m definitely ok sticking to the short stuff for quite a while, I’ve got less than zero desire to start a marathon training program right now.  However, I can see doing 10 this weekend real slow and not hating it, and enjoying going out for an easy 3 every once in a while over offseason to shake the rust off.  And that’s very different than my perspective last week.

My hip didn’t hurt!  Like, at all!  I felt like there was a tiny bit of tension there, but it also might have been psychosomatic.  I haven’t been doing any sort of rehab on it with stretching or rolling or core so that might be something to start focusing on next week.  Baby steps.

The bad news:

While my hip didn’t hurt cruising, I have a feeling it would have complained about speedwork.  I originally wanted to transition fairly quickly to short interval sessions to keep up my fitness just a little, but I’m going to give it longer at the easy peasy lemon squeezy pace.

Now that I’ve peeled my calluses and blisters off (gross, I know), I got hot spots on my Clifton 2s within 1.5 miles.  Great shoes for walking, shite (for me) for running.  I feel like buying another pair of running shoes is EMBARKING upon something, which for some reason I’m not ready to do, so I’m going to deal with my perfectly nice, comfortable, but very heavy Kailuas for a while.  Also, because the Clifton 3s don’t appear to be out yet and I’ll give them a chance since I read that they are widening the toe box again!!!

On tap…

Mar30-4

#projectspring is in full swing.  Obviously, there’s still a lot of things that I want to get going, but I’m making my way.  I feel like, just finally this week, I can see a whole lot of fun things on the schedule and feel genuinely excited about the fun I’m going to have instead of thinking… ugh… stuff to do.  I may not be bounding up out of bed without an alarm, but I’ve definitely lost the core “tireds” of endurance training.

I’ve got some fun stuff on tap for the rest of the week, like finally sorting Bonaire pics, gaming, going to a play, etc., and am really looking forward to a non-athlete type approach to a swim and a run this weekend.  Show up, have fun, enjoy being active with a bunch of other people, and giving less than -1 fucks about how long it takes to get from point A to point B.

1200 Calories

Listening to music tonight and got inspired…. sung to the tune of 16 Tons.  The #projectraceweight struggle is real, yo.  Enjoy!

struggleisreal

Ohhhhh, some people say diamonds are a girl’s best friend

But a dieting woman would give it all for a fried chicken tend’

Chicken and gravy and a side of mashed

My mind is weak but hips are strong

 

You eat 1200 calories and what do you get?

Another day older and deeper in calorie debt

Pizza hut don’t call me cause I can’t go

I owe my soul to My Fit Foods

 

I woke up to a light greek yogurt breakfast and the sun didn’t shine

I counted ten thousand steps that I walked in a line

Grilled chicken and rice for lunch and veggies in a bowl

I skipped cake day, oh bless my soul

 

You eat 1200 calories and what do you get?

Another day older and deeper in calorie debt

McDonalds don’t call me cause I can’t go

I owe my soul to My Fit Foods

 

If you see me comin’ better step aside

Some other people didn’t and some other people died

I’m mad as hell and hangry as a bear

I’ll cut a bitch and I don’t care

 

Cuz I ate 1200 calories, and what do I get?

Another day older and deeper in calorie debt

Taco Bell don’t call me cause I can’t go

I owe my soul to My Fit Foods

 

Wax on, wax off.  Chopping the wood and carrying the water.  Keepin’ on keepin’ on.  That is all.  Happy weekend!

 

A day in the new life

Days are a little different now that I’m on a bit of a break with this whole sport thing…

I wake up in the morning, shower, brush my teeth, take care of the pets, pack my breakfast and lunch (or not, depending on the day), and go to work.  I still am not yet springing up at my alarm even on 8+ hours sleep, so sleep-a-palooza is still in effect.  Though I do kind of screw that up a day or two each week by staying up too late, there’s plenty of sleeping long, sleeping in, and naps making up for it.

There’s no serious run, bike, or swim before work right now.  There’s not even walk, stretch, yoga, or weights.  No trying to squeeze in *something* in the mornings.  It feels weird still, but I don’t really miss it yet.  I miss the idea of being a triathlete, but when I think about actually doing a real workout session right now my body and mind cringe.  It’s not time yet.

Mar22-2

Most strenuous workout so far = 1.5 mile hike around a pretty park.  We hated it.

At work, I am making a habit of having coffee first thing.  I pour a little bit of the real stuff at the bottom of my cup and fill the rest with decaf.  A little bit of caffeine is definitely helping curb my appetite in the mornings without making me wired, since I’m trying to eat less.  I’ve kind of ditched the breakfast rules and have eaten everything from an oatmega bar to half a greek salad, anything filling around 100-200 calories.  I’m finding I’m not dying for food in the morning but by 11 or so, I will get hangry if I don’t have *something*.

We usually go for at least 2 walks a day, one in the morning or at lunch, and one in the afternoon.  Even without training, I’m hitting 10k steps or over about 50% of my days (and generally hitting about 8k on the other days).  With a tiny bit of effort, moving your body 5 miles a day isn’t that hard at all.  Even when I was marathon training, even when I was streaking and running every day, I didn’t always hit 10k steps on shorter run days.  It’s interesting how the body just compensates to keep itself in stasis as much as possible.

I’ll have lunch around 12:30-1pm-ish, and generally something similar to I would have had before.  Today was mongolian grille – veggies, chicken, sauce and brown rice.  Oh, the rice was amazing. When I was training brown rice with just some soy sauce never was so satisfying but I ate that shit up today like it was plate of loaded cheese fries.

Mar22-4

Freebirds salad with chicken, black beans, veggies, and guac.  Something I would have eaten before, maybe with some cheese (sacrifices have to be made sometimes).

The short version of my diet is “I got rid of snacks”.  This is taking a bit to get used to.  I used to eat constantly.  Breakfast.  Mid-morning snack. Lunch.  Snack around 3.  Snack around 5.  Dinner.  Second dinner.  Generally healthy stuff, needed to keep up being a triathlete, but still, lots of calories.  When 3 or 5 or whatever comes around now, I’ve been distracting myself with a cup of tea, and some gum (and making sure that my water stays full as well).

It’s a little weird to not have training in the morning and at lunch, but we almost always did something after work.  That’s when it’s the weirdest.  We’ll leave work around 5:30-6pm, maybe have one errand, but not always, and then be home, dinner prepared, and eaten by 7pm… and thanks to the time change, it’s still light.

It’s very odd to have evenings free.  Because of this, the house has stayed very picked up, I’ve read probably close to 700 pages in books over the last 7 days, and on nights where I haven’t been stupid or unintentionally dosed with a bunch of caffeine (hello decaf coffee THAT CLEARLY WASN’T), I’ve gotten a heck of a lot of sleep.

In terms of following my plan, I give myself a gold star for the week.  We’re not counting Monday, since it was Zliten’s birthday and we started the next day.  Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, I ate between 1200-1300 calories.  Thursday was working SXSW for work, St. Patrick’s Day and D&D night, and even with all that I kept it to 1500 calories.  Saturday was birthday celebrations with the parents and some drinks later, and I kept it under 1900.  My fitbit said I stuck around the 1000 calorie deficit all week, and that’s generally where I need to be to see any changes (since I’m pretty sure it overestimates calorie burn, I don’t see any change at the “kinda hard” setting with a smaller deficit).

Mar22-1

Sometimes beer is more important than food.  Especially green beer.

Sometimes balancing the calorie bank + sanity = sacrificing a little bit of true healthiness in the moment.  For example, I ate approximately 1000 FOOD calories so I could enjoy a green beer or three on Thursday.  I counted my giant slice of carrot cake I was served (not my choice on the size but it’s a favorite of mine so I also didn’t turn it away) as my dinner on Saturday.  Occasionally, it’s going to happen.  Believe me, after how crappy I felt Sunday, I’m not going to make a habit of it!

I was actually nervous that I’d be able to hit these numbers again.  I’m very happy I’m on day 9 now, and navigated some potential pitfalls in an acceptable way (and haven’t hated my life).  This week coming up will have challenges as well.  I expect they all will.  That’s just how life goes.

Friday, we’re camping with a big crew of people at the Renaissance Faire.  I’m just going to have to a) not do snacks and bring reasonable healthy meals to cook over the fire, b) pour my drinks with lots of mixers and stick to vodka/diet soda or something like that and c) realize I’ll probably be trekking all over that day so a few extra calorie are probably warranted anyway.

Mar22-3

Been so busy triathleting I haven’t camped in TWO YEARS.  We set it up to make sure it still could be a tent.

Sunday is Easter with my family.  My strategy there is to enjoy the feast, but take a small plate for lunch and eat until I’m no longer hungry, not stuffed and bring home some leftovers for dinner.  I’m also bringing cauli-taters and a green salad so I have healthy stuff to load up on and taste the rest.

As for my weight, I stepped on the scale for the first time Saturday, and I’ll continue to do it daily for the data points, but it doesn’t mean anything until about April.  I’m not sad about it, I’m not happy about it, it just is and I’ll let it be until I start to see a trend.

I know my body is resistant to change, so I know that I need to be patient.  I also know this works if you keep at it, so that’s what I need to do.  This shit doesn’t happen overnight as much as you want it to.  Oh man, I really DO want it to though.  Am I at race weight yet?

In my head, I feel like I should be champing at the bit to start training again, or at least start doing some sort of running, biking, or swimming, but I am not at all.  Not in the least.  The idea of intervals or watts or garmins or peak weeks or getting packed up for a race doesn’t spark anything yet.  I’ve rushed myself back into training for a few years now, sometimes under the guise of just going out and doing stuff for fun, and if I want to stay in this sport, I need to make sure I don’t do that. I got myself totally and truly burnt out and I need time.

7 weeks off in late 2012.  The only time I took off in 2013 was an injury… a few forced weeks doing nothing and then doing everything as quickly as I could to ramp back up.  5 weeks off in 2014 summer.  5 weeks off in 2015 (which I honestly probably did way more training for an offseason than I should have).  Every other moment of every other year I’ve been specifically training for races. I suppose I can give myself a break if I’m dragging my feet 2.5 weeks, especially in those circumstances.

The good news is I that found some pretty good joy in a cruiser bike ride around our neighborhood yesterday.  We even went for a walk around the block to close out the sunset and joked that it was the first brick of the year.  I’m pretty hopeful that I’ll get to paddleboard for the first time today, and if not, I’m looking forward to another bike ride.  I’m coming around to the idea of doing some body maintenance, like stretching, rolling, and bodyweight stuff soon.  Not yet, but soon.

While I’ve been hoping to spring out of bed one morning like “ok, my body and mind are completely fixed and I’m ready to be who I was last year at this time again”, I have a feeling it’s not going to happen quite like that.  Instead of diving off the high dive right away, I’ve been sitting by the shore for a few weeks.  Now I’m considering sticking my toe in.  In a few months, I have faith I’ll be all the way in but I’m not rushing myself and letting myself acclimate to the water every step of the way, for the first time in forever.

Diaries of a madwoman – day 1 of #projectraceweight

I know things will fall into place soon.  I know it gets easier…  routine, inertia, and all those types of things.  But the first few days of trying to limit calories are always ridiculously horrible and hilarious.  So, I present to you… the day 1 chronicles of #projectraceweight.

Dec14-1

Spaceship!!! I mean raceweight!!!!

Upon waking: yeah! Time to start #projectraceweight, I’ve only been thinking about this for months.  LETS GET IT ON!

Morning – hey, I’m too busy to do anything but eat this 100 calorie greek yogurt (with a 5 day old spoon from my last yogurt that’s still sitting at my desk, yeah, I know, I’m gross).  That’s probably a good start, right?

Mid-morning: why am I biting people’s heads off and feeling irrationally angry at things?  Oh, right, I only had a 100 calorie yogurt for breakfast.

noon-thirty: turkey sandwich is LIFE.  Veggie pasta salad is EVERYTHING.  I’m sorry for the things I thought when I was hungry.  I love eating food.

Fl-6

Sadly, not publix.  But like, kinda the same.  With sprouted grain bread instead of magic bread.  And no magical pickles.  Ok, not the same at all. 🙁

2pm: well, fuck, why am I hungry already?  Well, knew this was going to happen for a few days.  Let’s get some decaf chai.  Yummmm.

3pm: gum is good gum is good gum is good gum is good gum is good gum is good.

4pm: why did i eat the stupid cheese on my sandwich?  That’s 70 calories, like half the can of soup I’m staring at wishing I could put in my mouth.  I wonder how many calories are in tin?

4:30pm: I ate a healthy breakfast and lunch.  Why aren’t I skinny yet?  119 days and 1 dinner to go.  Sigh…

Mar16

This is the appropriate sized salad for me right now…

5pm: gum is good gum is good gum is good… fuck, it’s getting stale. *pleh*

5:14pm, 5:21pm, 5:22pm, 5:22:30pm, etc: is it time to go yeeeeeeeeet?

5:25pm: break down and grab my blackberries.  Some of them taste like they’re about to turn bad.  Wonder if a stomach bug would help me get to race weight quicker.  Decide to pick around the obviously bad ones as a compromise.

5:45pm: whyyyyyy do I have to do an errand after work?  I want to eat dinner noaaaaw.  Who’s idea was it to give up snacks?  (sigh, ME)

6pm: if the bike guy takes any longer I might go lick someone’s tires.

6:30pm: this is the best chicken I’ve ever tasted in my life.  This yogurt caesar isn’t so bad either.  I love food.  I love food so much.  This is one thing I have going for me, I love healthy food so at least I don’t hate what I’m eating.  That would be horrible!

6:45pm: I have more calories, and I’m still hungry, so another chicken patty and 10 (count them) tater tots as a treat.  Besides needing a dash more fiber, my macros are spot on without explicitly trying *throws the rockstar horns*.

7pm: ok, 1250 calories.  Done for the day.  I’ll put some lemon and stevia in this water and pretend it’s vodka and I’m sipping it on a beach somewhere, already done with this.

Mar16-2

Yep.  Totally the same, except on my couch, from a water bottle, no booze, and no ocean to play in.  Totally the same.  (Not the same at all)

8:30pm: fuck it, let’s go to bed so I can’t see the kitchen anymore.

8:45pm: proudly put two stars on the calendar, one for me, one for Zliten, signifying that we made it through #projectraceweight day one, successfully

Today, I’m here with coffee in hand and a slightly bigger breakfast, and I’m back to the start.  1 day + 1 meal down, 118 and 2 meals to go.  Let’s get it on, day 2!

How to eat 1200 calories a day and not go crazy (hopefully)

Howdy campers!  It’s Zliten’s birthday and we’re celebrating the last day of birthday-mas with some homemade birthday bourbon bacon butter pecan ice cream and a nice seafood meal at McCormick and Schmick’s and maybe a little extra bourbon not in the ice cream.  Who can guess?

Mar14-1

OH. YEAH.

Tomorrow starts the phase of #projectspring called #projectraceweight.  I don’t know why, but it feels more official with a hashtag so I’m going with it!

As I said before, the plan in terms of food intake is:

  • 1200-1500 calories 5 days a week.
  • 1500-2000 calories 2 days a week.
  • Getting my macros as close as possible to: 100g protein, 40-60g fat, 25g fiber.

Now, the last time I associated the number 1200 and calories together was probably something like “that post-race meal had 1200 calories in it” or “dang, I still have 1200 calories left to eat today and I’ve had breakfast, lunch, and snacks”.  With training and racing, 1200 calories in a day = grouchy, lightheaded, and your performance suffers.  You eventually end up in your kitchen eating almond butter out of the jar with your fingers because your body needs fuel NOW.  Don’t ask me how I know this.

For the next few months, there won’t be training to fuel.  I’m sure I’ll have days where I find myself having a higher activity level (heck, I have a 10 mile race and sprint triathlon between now and July that I’m going to show up at and see what I can do) and will adjust accordingly, but my typical day?  1200 calories + just a little more if I’m dying.

I’ve done this before, I can do it again, and I believe I’m up for the challenge.  However, it doesn’t mean it will be easy and it won’t take some strategy.  Here’s how I’m hoping to get through this.

Feb2-3

Tacos will always remain on the menu, maybe just a little less cheese though…

My version of a healthy meal is largely unchanged.

I’m not planning on trying to really reduce portions (as in, eat a smaller sandwich, salad, etc), just remove calories where perhaps they might be luxuries.  For example, right now, I might eat a turkey sandwich on a roll with a nice big side salad containing cheese and croutons as a meal.  Next week, I’ll eat a turkey sandwich on sprouted grain bread with no cheese and just mustard and a nice big side salad with just veggies and lower calorie yogurt dressing, which is really just as filling, just slightly less enjoyable.

feb12-1

Because I’m not doing what’s on the garmin anymore, I’m not doing much of the rest of the picture either.

Eliminating snacks with more than ~50 calories.

When I’m not crushing 2-3 workouts a day, I’d much rather allocate my calories to a bigger lunch and dinner rather than pick at food all day and never feel full.  Before running and triathlon, when I was eating to lose weight, I rarely ever snacked – maybe some carrots here or a piece of fruit there, but I saved my calories for meals and felt much better than picking at food and being hungry all day.

Typically, I am more brain hungry (want) than stomach hungry (need) between meals in offseason, because I’m used to eating more food every so often, and that’s a hard habit to break.  Things I’ve used in the past to curb my appetite:

  • Try some water first to see if I’m just thirsty
  • Raw veggies
  • Small piece of fruit
  • Pickles
  • Chicken broth
  • Tea/decaf coffee
  • La Croix with a few drops of stevia in it (instant soda!)
  • Gum
  • If I’m desperate – a handful of pretzels

In general, if you give me some salt and/or something the chew on, I’ll get by.

Feb17-2

Definitely one of my go to meals out.  Chicken pho with veggies is super filling for the amount of calories.

Not being tied to my kitchen

Of course, the best way to eat healthy and lose weight is to cook most/all of your own food.  However, sometimes a friend wants to meet you for lunch.  Or you’re out and about and you’re starving.  Or you are just plain sick of your own food.  Or you just don’t fucking feel like cooking.

One great tool in your fat loss arsenal is to have a bunch of meals you know are reasonable out there in the wild.  I lost 100 lbs eating a whole lot of takeout because my company was working long hours to ship a product and feeding us lunches and sometimes also dinners at work.  I still got it done.  Is it cheaper and healthier to make food at home?  Sure, but I can assure you that it’s possible even if you don’t cook all the time.

I generally have the info in my head, but I’m also building up a personal database of places I can go and get a filling meal for under 500 calories, which I will stick to if at all possible.  While it feels gimmicky sometimes, I appreciate a lot of restaurants doing a lighter menu so at least I know there’s something reasonable, and something I can somewhat predict the calorie count.

2008-1

In July, hopefully I’ll be back to this size and able to put all this nonsense away for a while.

This is not forever

This is the big one for me.  This is what I’m doing right now.  Cake and pizza and all the gross food I can afford to splurge on occasionally during high volume training days will still exist in four months.  I won’t have to suffer shunning the bread basket at restaurants and order whatever sounds least horrible on the light menu and grumble or eat like a fucking bird at parties so I can have a few drinks for too long.

I’ll have some stuff to navigate and my willpower will be tested.  There will be a good handful of birthdays and other social get togethers between now and July.  Game night every two weeks has snacks and sometimes beer.  I’ll be on a freaking cruise in the middle of this (which I will do my best and splurge SPARINGLY).  I just have to remember that:

  1. I have an ultimate goal that is more important than whatever fun food is staring me down if I can’t find a way to make it work and…
  2. I will not have to be lame forever.  Just for now.

Bonaire2-16

This will NOT be part of a normal day.

A normal day

In general, I’m going to try to stick to the same amount of calories for each typical meal every day so even if I am not tracking closely and am out and about, I can have a general grasp of what I can afford to eat.

Breakfast: 200-250 calories

I want to make sure this has a decent amount of protein.  I’m less concerned about a huge volume of food for the calories, but it needs to keep me fueled from about 9am to 1pm (to sit at my desk and not do much).  Typical breakfasts for me are:

  • Greek yogurt, touch of cereal for crunch, small piece of fruit
  • Smoothie with protein powder, frozen fruit, and a dash of milk or coconut water
  • Coffee and protein powder smoothie with a dash of milk
  • One piece of bread with turkey sausage and light cream cheese
  • Leftover soup

I’ll pair this with a cup of decaf coffee with a SPLASH of the regular stuff.  I may be the only person trying to get back ON caffeine, but its a GREAT appetite suppressor, even in these small doses for me.

Lunch and dinner: 400-500 calories

I know how to eat a BIG HUGE GIGANTIC 400 calorie meal.  I also know how to eat 400 calories in 4 spoonfuls.  For the next few months, I need to lean towards the former and ditch anything that’s got a lot of calories per volume.  Typical lunches or dinners may include:

  • Greek chicken wrap on 80 calorie wheat tortillas with light dressing, homemade side of soup
  • Chicken in the slowcooker in tomato and spicy sauce with some rice and veggies.
  • Lean ground beef on top of a taco salad with light sour cream and guac
  • The above mentioned turkey sandwich, no cheese no mayo, with a veggie filled side salad with light dressing

Frankly, most of my recipes are ~500 calories or under.  I just need to make sure I pick the most filling ones because I won’t have snacks to fall back on!

It’s a little intimidating, because I haven’t done this for a while.  What if I fail?  If I was in a vacuum and didn’t have to navigate other humans with my food choices, it would be much simpler, but certainly not as fun.  So, for the next few months, it’s about the food and not about the food all at the same time.

Question: what’s your go to healthy meal (either homemade or out)?

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