Thursday, May 19, 2011

Locked In

There comes a point when your nutrition and exercise is right on track and regardless of pessimistic or self defeating thoughts you just don't do anything to compromise the successful track record experienced so far. I don't know if you've ever been totally locked into your program, and then you just decide for one reason or another that you just will give up on reaching that goal. There's just a feeling that you want to go back to some familiar place that seems like it will be more comfortable, but in reality it can be a miserable place.

I faintly remember a time when I actually worked hard at sabotaging my success. I mean I actually went out of my way to get back to a place that was more familiar instead of continuing the enjoyment I was currently experiencing. I must have thought that at some point all the new experiences, even if wonderful from various angles, would have to find their way back to the beginning. So, I could tell myself "I told you so!"

I don't know how long ago that I had that experience, but it was very long ago. Nowadays I like the feeling of being locked into a goal. It's a strange and motivating experience to know that I am trying to achieve a a particular goal, knowing that I can reach it, but knowing at the same time that 3 months to stay motivated, focused, and disciplined is hard.

Sometimes having the goal, and having already achieved some satisfaction within a short period of time, motivates me to continue the process. Feelings and thoughts are fleeting, so I never have to worry too much about getting too worried, frustrated, or down. Everything changes in time.

I think a person must get used to change and embrace the unknown and look forward to new experiences. I also realize that change has been occurring in all areas of my life for quite some time, and I've had to embrace the challenges, find ways to enjoy new discoveries, and figure out how to do the best with what I have. Instead of pining for things to stay the same,  which I believe some people do too much of, it would be better to figure out a way to be joyful with what is happening to you.

I have a friend who has been in the midst of crisis. The person's whole world was turned upside down and publicized. However, as we have spoken on numerous occasions, this person would agree that life is better now than it ever was. Who would have thought? It's not that the rebuilding of one's life, one's reputation, is an easy task at hand, but the clarity that came from such enormous events has had profound positive effects that could have only come from a crisis like the one experienced.

Regardless of where one is at it is ALWAYS possible to lock in to a goal, stay focused, and ride the waves until the end. The things one learns is much more powerful than giving into self sabotaging, negative thoughts.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Right now I'm just tired. I feel a little wiped out tonight and it would be nice to just go downstairs and have a little "snacky-pie." But I won't. I'm not craving anything, nor am I hungry, but my body can feel those empty places in the stomach. It's just the lack of food that I feel. I'm still going strong, but tonight is one of those times where you just want to let go of the rigorous structure.  I think it's more of a thought that an actual urge at this point. I thought I would write about it, because I'm sure everyone who goes through the process of body transformation has these moments. Some may be larger or as small as mine. But it's worth mentioning, since it's important to recognize where weak spots exist, and how to be fully aware of what is happening, so I don't give into it. 

I'm always amazed at how some weeks, or months are so vastly different than what I expect in my food intake. I totally thought I would have eaten almost exactly what I did during my first competition. But I'm not. Today, I had the same breakfast, the same 1030am snack, the same 3pm snack, but my lunch and dinner were different again. for both lunch and dinner I had  ground low fat turkey, mixed with onions, seasoning, tomatoes, and diced tomatoes made into a meatball sauce. I probably had the equivalent to 3/4 -1 cup of this and that was all.

My total intake was approximately 1300 calories, less than most days.

Tonight I took Paul Daniel's Kettlebell class. Tonight we did lunges, squats, shoulder presses, swings, get-ups for abdominals, and high pulls for back. Really, the entire workout always works the entire core, but some exercises target more of a certain area. The workout didn't feel as long tonight, but it was intense, without many breaks.

Monday, May 16, 2011

It's still possible to keep on track with crazy busy days

Today, the girls and I left the house at 8:30am to go to homeschooling Legoland day in Carlsbad. We stayed until 5pm closing. I think we left the parking lot at 5:20pm. It was a huge day as all days are whenever visiting an amusement park. We carpooled with another homeschooling family, and arrived back in Ladera Ranch at 6:10pm. As quickly as I could I jumped out of her car, ran into her bathroom to change into Kettlebell clothing, transferred all the stuff, including the kids, into my car, and met my husband in the parking lot of Cal Elite where I take Kettlebell at 6:30pm on Mondays. It was insane to say the least. When I arrived in the parking lot, I pulled up along side my husband's car, jumped out with water bottle and keys in hand, and made it to class 2 minutes late. The class just started.

It was an okay, but not great day of food intake. I had my typical banana/peanut butter/ protein shake at home in the morning. Then, snack was my typical 1 pear and 1 hard boiled egg. Lunch consisted of lettuce, 1 Tbs or less of fat free ranch, pepperocinis, 4 bean salad drained from the brine, 4 oz white chicken meat.
Snack at 3pm was a protein bar. Since we left the park at 5:20, I ate my 2nd protein bar for dinner at 5:30pm. I'm not too into having more than 1 protein bar a day, but it was the best I could do considering.

Total calories for the day:
400+200+300+300+300=1500 calories today (estimated on the high side).
walking from 10am-5pm
Kettlebell class from 6:30-7:30pm

Even though today was an extreme day of doing it all, going to kettlebell felt wonderful. It was me time, building muscle time, and sweat time. It was great!

I know I like to cave in after a hard day of doing so much, but exercising really helps to make my insides and outsides feel much better than not doing the class at all. Something changes in my body and mind that makes it all worth it.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Yummy Yummy Foods

I totally love to eat desserts or anything that probably is not good for me. My favorites are the cheesecakes from Cheesecake Factory. But I also love Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, french fries, hot fudge sundaes, and if I was to have fast food, my favorite would be In and Out  and Taco Bell.  I love Nachos, Pad Thai, and on and on I could go....

However, this said, it is also important to keep in mind that while I may like and love all these types of foods, they are just foods. They are not life! So, when I get together with friends and family during a time when I am training then the temptations are not great and the desire is lessened, because the process of training is much more exciting.

I don't think I had felt this way until I actually went through the process of training for my first competition. Training the first time around was much more difficult, because I had to learn to go through pain, frustration, anger, as if I was detoxing. Even though I had not been eating poorly on a consistent basis, the absence of a break from total clean eating was really tough.

Now, I don't have the same issues. Now, I don't feel angry, frustrated, or in pain. Now, it's more of a focus on consistently sticking with the program for  3 1/2 more months regardless of my thoughts or other interruptions, or just a lack of motivation.  Losing fat is just a matter of time. There is no special trick to lose the fat other than just eating clean, eating appropriate portion size, and exercising.

I think that's the hard part for most individuals. Feeling that time is going very slowly is one of the hardest challenges. There are no highs until you get into a groove, and then there are days of boredom with what you are eating, and there are no rewards from the food you are eating, unless you can appreciate a better complexion, sleeping better, more energy, better clarity, and more desire for having things just so.

Anyway, the yum yum foods are just so incredibly yummy, but are never worth giving into unless you are consciously focused on taking yourself off track. Don't do it! Keep motivated, Keep consistent, and Keep the goal in mind....Change the iPod tunes, change up the flavors in your meals, and change your reward system.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mothers Day Celebration

So, the second half of the story from the other night was that the girls and I came home Sunday (Mothers Day) from our trip away from home.  My husband wanted to do something special for me, because it was both our Anniversary and Mother's Day that weekend. Knowing that I can only eat certain types of foods, he had prepared a favorite Cajon Shrimp dish, the Vietnamese-Asian salad I posted last week, some cooked vegetables (undressed), and surprised me with a wonderful dessert --an Edible Fruit Creation. We had never had one before, but it was really great.

He had invited my family over for dinner as well. The reason why I'm sharing this information is because here it is a special occassion and the temptation or desire would be to have a meal that wasn't so healthy. Why? because it always feels wonderful to taste food with FAT in it! I'm sure most of us are programmed to think of celebrations as a great time to pig out or just eat whatever. But I wasn't going to and my husband was really great about making dinner and inviting others over to celebrate, knowing that the food he prepared was mostly FAT FREE. Wow! That's a hard one to do when you have guests over.

What is most noteworthy about the experience is that the program that we have inside of our heads can be changed, and we can still enjoy the festivities without all the fat, overindulgence of calories and carbohydrates.

Tonight's Workout:
Kettlebells for 45 minutes with at 6:15pm.

Food Intake:
8:30am: same smoothie as always in the morning. (4ooc)
1030am: pear and 1 hard boiled egg (>200c)
1pm: 2 left over Cajun shrimp + left over Vietnamese-Asian salad (250c)
3pm: Promax peanut butter crunch protein bar (290c)
5:30pm: I made a low fat turkey Stroganoff for the family, but before I added some of the more dense calorie foods to the final part of the meal, I took out some of the onion, celery, carrot, olive oil, ground turkey, beef broth mixture, and added it to a small portion of brown rice for MY DINNER. (350c max)

= maximum 15oo c ( I usually round-up).

Thank you for the comments! It's great to hear what you have to say!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Meal Choices away from the House

Saturday and Sunday the children and I were away from the house. We were staying in a hotel in Ventura and meals I ate were from cooler I packed or carefully chosen when I ate out.

I think this is an area of great difficulty for most of us. I know that even though my husband has competed 5 times in body building competitions, it is virtually impossible for him to agree to leave the house during those months of training and eating clean. Of course that makes it difficult to do things as a family when he is so rigid. As an example, my friend was having an Anniversary and my husband didn't want to go because he was in "training mode." I would have gone without him, but that particular weekend was also his birthday.

On the other hand, maybe because I'm the primary caretaker of the children, I will go on short vacations even during a time when I am training for a competition. It's not easy, but I do it because I have to or because being flexible is important.

Either way, I was able to have an overnight stay elsewhere, and I ate white meat chicken strips an a pear for dinner. I would normally have eaten vegetables instead, but it was what it was. For breakfast this morning, I had scrambled egg whites (mostly) and 1/2 cup of oatmeal for breakfast. The eggs were prepared with a little too much oil, but it wouldn't be detrimental, because I would make sure I off set that fat/calories, by reducing somewhere else in the day. Plus it was the morning meal, so the fat would be okay. Snack was some white chicken meat &  a pear again, then lunch was a protein bar, and at snack time I was home and had 1 brown rice cake, 1 TBSP of peanut butter and a few slivers of white chicken meat.

While what I ate wasn't ideal, it did work, and the calories were kept in check.

As far as workouts, flexibility is equally important. Friday I worked out at home,  and then Saturday morning when the girls were both in classes I worked out at home. I ran on the treadmill 30 minutes, then did some leg exercises. The girls and I left Orange County at 3:30pm to travel. I had already worked out, so it wasn't necessary to workout that evening. All I had to do is focus on my food intake.
Sunday afternoon we were coming home, so I was planning on working out this evening after the girls went to bed. I did. I ran 30 minutes, did 4 sets of lunges and called it quits.

No, it wasn't easy. The last thing most of us want to do when we come home from vacation is workout, but it's just not an option when you want to achieve a goal. I kind of have to look at it as just a matter of fact and not be so ridiculous about taking less than 1 hour away from my nighttime "me time" and do something I may not be INTO. One hour went by quickly, and I felt better than if I hadn't done it.

Anyway, that's it for tonight. I just wanted to share some thoughts about being flexible while staying committed to the goal.

I am at 3 weeks now. I have my moments of weak thinking, but mostly I just bypass those thoughts with a cup of tea.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Calories count

It's been 2 1/2 weeks now. I hadn't been counting calories until yesterday. I pretty much eat proportionately the same every day, however I wanted to make sure that I was pretty much right on track with how much I ate.

Yesterday, I logged in at 1500 calories for the day. I rounded up the calories just in case.
breakfast 400
snack 200
lunch 300
snack 300
dinner 300

Then on a daily basis I workout 45 minutes - 1.25 hours depending on where and what type of workout.
I know my calories are good, because I'm hungry right now!!!!

Again, I'm drinking lots of Good Earth Tea. Sometimes I have 1-3 huge mugs per day. I have yet to weight in. I wasn't so concerned with that right now, just as long as the clothes are getting looser and I can physically see a difference. I may weight in in about 1 month. I figured that as long as I'm feeling good, feeling motivated, and I'm following a relatively low calorie and quality food diet, I should be okay for a while. Also, like most of us women, if I step on the scale when I'm not ready, I might get too disappointed.
So I'm not going to.

My diet has been very interesting lately. I have really changed up so many meals. Tonight I had 3 egg whites + 1 egg yolk scrambled, with 3-4 tablespoons of salsa + 1/3 cup brown rice 1 hour before a workout.

This afternoon for lunch I had lettuce + 1/2 cup 4 bean salad (no oil), 1 Tablespoon f/f Ranch dressing, 3 oz white chicken meat. I've enjoyed the variety of different meals lately. It keeps small meals interesting when one is not consuming much food.

I had 1 mild temptation the other night when I made pizza for the family. I didn't eat any, but I took a nice big smell. That was good! In addition, Wednesday night was a little hard for me to get on the treadmill. I didn't feel like I had much energy and I was exhausted. I started to walk on the treadmill and thought I might walk the entire time, but I actually did run 25 minutes. I think my body was just so tired and it was 8:45 when I went downstairs to workout, so my body was going into hibernating mode. After the run, I did hamstring curls, plie leg presses, calf raises, and I think that was it. 4 sets each.

Then to bed and listened to books on my ipod.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

vietnamese-style chicken salad

My husband's been cooking lately, and he made this fantastic salad.
It has very little fat and a wonderful recipe for helping to reduce body fat, while enjoying the taste of a good meal.

heat a gas grill to medium high:
Season chicken with 1/4 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper and grill, turning once until cooked through. Approx 2 minutes each side. Let chicken cool. Shred it or cut it into cubes.

With a mortar and pestle pound 3 small shallots, 1 fresh jalepeno (cored & chopped & seeded if you want less heat), 1 TBS granulated sugar, & 1/8 tsp. pepper until the shallots are very soft (not pureed) & the liquid is released. Add 1/4 rice vinegar & 3 TBS fish sauce. put aside for now.

Put the salad mix together:
6 oz package coleslaw mix + 1 cup fresh mint leaves, + 1/4 cup cilantro leaves + 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts.
Mix dressing with salad mixture and chicken.

This is an amazing salad! You have wonderful carbohydrates, white chicken meat, and a good fat!
It doesn't get better than this....