Friday, January 28, 2011

Back on Track - Things I've learned - Counting Calories

Back on Track
Wowee! Truly, I have been off track since Halloween. Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas are like my "sabotage Trifecta" for the year. No real damage done, but no progress either. I've finally gotten those bad habits shaken from my system and moving past them! I finally had enough of the "cheating" mindset and I am ready to continue my journey. A HUGE part of my sabotage is all the time off that I get during holidays. It's like Halloween wet my appetite for bad things then Thanksgiving/Christmas were so un-structured that I got back into bad habits again...Being back at work in full swing has helped. It's January 28th and I have just finished my first 5-day work-week since mid-december! I was sick, we had ice/snow days added into's been crazy!

Things I've Learned
  • Well, I just now learned that pears do NOT go down well at all...I've had pear slowly moving down my pouch for about 10 minutes now and it's getting really annoying.
  • I've learned that often times I over-eat out of boredom. That is how I know that structure is important to me.
  • I've learned that "boredom" for me is sometimes created by my inability to focus and get things done and that my ADHD medication helps me organize my thoughts, get things done, and therefore kick "boredom" to the curb. And my ADHD medication is very important to my journey and my life.
  • I've learned that it's really easy to eat things that I shouldn't. Lots of "bad for you" foods (not like pasta...think MM&Ms and King Size Kit-Kat bars) go down very easily in large quantities.
  • I've learned that this band really is working for me. I had my doubts for a while...I was afraid I was going to fail, but if I made it from Halloween to mid-January without gaining insane amounts of weight, this thing is WORKING. I can no longer eat the amount of food I used to be able to and that is helping considerably. I may not have "rocked the band" for the last couple of months, but it was still there standing guard.
  • I've learned that even when I'm "off-track", I still have the willpower to do this right and it has been the best decision I've ever made.
  • I've learned that the 60lbs I've lost so far have made a HUGE difference in my life! I feel so much better now and I have so much more to look forward to.

Counting Calories
I've been back into the habit of writing everything down, setting calories goals and all that good stuff. I have to estimate calories sometimes because I'm just not the kind of person who is going to figure out how many calories the pot of homemade Vegetable Beef Soup I just made has in it and how many calories are in 1 cup of it. I also can't go into my small-town sandwich shop and expect them to be able to tell me how many calories their 1/2 wrap has in it. So, I have to estimate based on ingredients. I think I'm doing a pretty good job, but I wish I knew exactly so I could have a better idea where my inabilities to estimate are. I usually look up each ingredient online and then guess about how much of that ingredient was in my portion. I had 1/2 of a whole wheat wrap, so I look up whole wheat wraps, find the largest one that has the most calories, and half that number. At least if I'm fudging numbers, I know that I'm picking the highest number of calories, so that gives me a little wiggle room. Then I look up bacon and estimate that there may have been 2 entire pieces on my wrap...then the turkey...which I know was Boar's Head brand...but there wasn't much on there, so I figure it was about 3/4th of a serving... Very little mayo, so I guessed 1Tbs...Spicey Mustard was so low that it goes into the category of the lettuce & tomato that don't count!

I hope my logic of calorie estimating is reasonable because I have to do an awful lot of it sometimes. How do you guys "estimate" calories?

Friday, January 7, 2011

Can tears dehydrate you?

...Because I am so thirsty right now.

I've have a craptacular day. My mom's beloved cat began acting poorly yesterday and we found out today that he was terminally ill (likely cancer among other things), so we had to make the decision to have him put to sleep. Buddy was a cute little orange and white cat with a manx tail. He was super sweet and part of our family for 12 years. He has been mom's best little companion since my dad died 4 years ago.

I feel horrible. I LOVE animals and I hate to see them suffer. I hate to see how they don't feel well, but they still take the time to rub their little head across your hand for affection. It was heart-breaking to have to say it was time to let him go. I know it was the right decision. He will not suffer any longer and he will go peacefully, but It's just so sad.

I feel bad for my mom. She is very upset. I have been crying off and on all dang day. I hate crying. I really do. I hate for others to see me cry. I do have to say that my veterinarians are awfully nice and Dr. K even gave me a hug today before I had to go. They are very kind.

Now I'm really thirsty, but almost too "full" feeling to drink as much as I want...UGH.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

FLOURISH - My Word for 2011

Develop • Grow • Mature • Progress • Prosper • Succeed • Thrive

This is what I want to do in 2011. I want to conquer the part of me that still reverts to bad eating habits when given the chance and I want to pull the veil off from over my eyes and more clearly see the opportunity that I have given myself to flourish. I went through a lot to give myself this chance and I cannot let myself fail.

I hate how human nature can allow us to fail ourselves so easily. Some folks have better willpower than others, but we ALL fall off the wagon sometimes.

The holidays were tough for me. I was off-schedule and very busy and surrounded by bad choices. Luckily, the band prevents you from eating TOO much, but it doesn't prevent you from making poor choices and eating more than you really ought to.

This year I want to tackle that little demon in my head that cannot resist temptations. That is how I will flourish.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

51 Fastest Fat Burners

Some of this is no-brainer stuff for LB folks, but reminders never hurt! There are some good tips here. I got this from today - via Enjoy!

1. Catch the running bug. You'll continue to burn fat after your jog: People who run for at least four hours a week melt more calories than non-runners, even when they're not running, a Yale University School of Medicine study reports.
2. Crank it up early. Working out harder during the first half of your workout and taking it easier during the second burns up to 23 percent more fat than doing the opposite, according to a study from The College of New Jersey.
3 & 4. Go hard -- and make it quick. Staying at 80 percent of your max heart rate for 40 minutes can amp your metabolism for 19 hours afterward, research published in Obesity notes. And doing a shorter workout at 75 percent of your max aerobic capacity will give you a greater metabolic boost than sweating longer at 50 percent, a Colorado State University reveals.
5 to 7. Lift dumbbells ... slowly. More muscle equals mega metabolism boost. Strength training can help you trim major fat, research reveals -- and doing super-slow (versus normal speed) reps increases strength by 50 percent.
Plus, using dumbbells activates more muscle fibers than using machines, explains Gregory Haff, Ph.D., an associate professor in the exercise physiology department at West Virginia University.
8. Speed up, slow down. Alternating bouts of high-intensity and low-intensity cardio has been shown to torch pounds.
9. Put on weight (literally). Wearing a weighted vest (about 10 percent of your body weight) while walking can boost your calorie burn by 8 percent.
10. Download Rihanna, not Brahms. Listening to up-tempo songs actually makes you run faster and harder than listening to slower-paced music, British scientists say.
11. Let kettlebells ring. Not only does working out with kettlebells build muscle, but doing it for 20 minutes burns as many calories as running at a 6-minute-mile pace for the same amount of time.
12. Keep it up. As few as 80 minutes a week of aerobic or weight training helps keep you from regaining belly fat after losing weight, according to researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
13. Add poles. Use Nordic poles while you walk, and you'll burn 20 percent more calories, says research from The Cooper Institute in Dallas.
14 & 15. Lift first, nix the rest. Doing strength training before cardio can torch more fat than cardio alone. And if you do one move after another without pausing, "you'll see more gains in strength and muscle mass," says Dr. Pierre Manfroy, M.D., consultant for the book "100 Ways to Supercharge Your Metabolism."
16. Add pounds. Lift heavier weights for fewer reps to make your workout more intense -- and burn more fat -- Manfroy says.
17. Try aromatherapy. Exercisers who inhaled strawberry and buttered-popcorn scents torched more calories than those who sniffed neutral odors, according to research from the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago.
18. Box yourself in. Wii boxing knocks out nearly twice as many calories as some other games, like Wii golf.
19. Kick it. Playing soccer not only torches more fat and builds more muscle than jogging, but it feels less tiring, Danish research reveals.
20. Stay in shape. Fit people have more fat-burning metabolites in their blood than couch potatoes do, scientists say.

22. Get more protein. Eating a protein-packed breakfast and lunch helps you burn more post-meal fat than if you eat lower-protein meals, according to Australian research.
23 & 24. Guzzle green tea -- or coffee. Downing five 5-ounce cups of green tea a day boosts metabolism, says Lyssie Lakatos, R.D., author of "Fire Up Your Metabolism." Two cups of coffee will also do the trick, one study shows.
25. Have an omelet. Eating two eggs for breakfast while dieting will help you trim more weight and body fat than if you ate the same amount of calories noshing on a bagel, scientists say.
26. Stay above 1,200 calories... "The average person's body goes into starvation mode if she eats fewer than 1,200 calories a day," says Eric Berg, author of "The 7 Principles of Fat Burning." "That's stress, and stress creates more belly fat."
27. ... and cut calories gradually. If you diet, don't trim more than 250 calories a day. Cutting calories too quickly slows your metabolism down, Dr. Manfroy says.
28 to 33. Munch on these. Almonds, cherries, yogurt, grapefruit, whole grains, and spicy foods have all been shown to torch fat.
34. Fuel up right. Eating a low-glycemic-index breakfast (such as muesli and peaches) will help you burn more fat during a subsequent workout than eating a high-glycemic-index meal (like waffles), researchers from the University of Nottingham reveal.
35. Think before you drink. Sipping as few as 90 calories' worth of vodka can slow your metabolism by 73 percent, one study shows.
36. Graze. Women who go without eating for long periods are more likely to have higher body-fat percentages than women who nosh more regularly, one study notes.
37. Dine like a Greek. Eating a diet rich in monounsaturated fat (think olive oil, avocados) can help trim both weight and fat, research published in the British Journal of Nutrition shows.
38. Stop gorging. Your body can only handle so much food at a time, so stick to 600 calories or less per meal to maximize fat-burning, says Leslie Cooper, co-author of "Flip the Switch: Proven Strategies to Fuel Your Metabolism and Burn Fat 24 Hours a Day."
39. Skip juice. Reaching for an apple instead of apple juice is not only better calorie-wise, but it'll also do a better job of boosting your metabolism, Dr. Manfroy explains.

41 & 42. Get C and D. Vitamin C can help you burn more fat, and D may help you lose fat, research notes. Aim for 400 to 500 mg of C and 800 mg of D a day.
43 & 44. Walk more (in denim). Researchers found that fitness-friendly offices (think treadmill desks, mobile headsets) helped people trim pounds and fat, as did wearing jeans to work, since dressing casual encourages you to move more. Wear comfy clothes when you can, pace while on the phone, and stand while chatting with co-workers.
45. Add fish oil (And work out). Taking 6 grams of fish oil per day and hitting the gym three times a week can help nix body fat, an Australian study reveals.
46. Work the day shift. Keeping nontraditional hours lowers levels of hormones that trigger satiety, increases blood glucose and insulin levels, and raises levels of the stress hormone cortisol (which can drive you to eat more), scientists say.
47. Nix the boob tube. Cut your TV time in half, and you'll burn more calories each day, research from the University of Vermont suggests.
48. Go mental. People who visualized themselves training a specific muscle boosted the strength in that muscle group, researchers found.
49. Eat a smaller dinner. Your body may not digest food -- and burn fat -- as efficiently if you down a huge meal right before bedtime, especially because your metabolism is slower while you sleep, Dr. Manfroy says.
50. Jump-start your morning. Wake up your metabolism -- and get fat-burning started -- by doing some sort of exercise within the first few hours of being awake, Cooper suggests.
51. Get your snooze on. Sleep for a solid 81D 2 hours instead of 51D 2, according to research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, and you'll lose more fat. Sweet dreams!

Copyright Health Magazine 2010

A New Year

One of my goals for the year is to keep up with the LB blogging world again. I got side-tracked during the holidays, but I am going to do my best to not only blog again, but to read blogs again. I get the most out of keeping up with you guys and commenting. Even if I only get to contribute to my own blog once a week, I want to keep up with everyone else, because it keeps me focused and reminds me of what I am trying to do with my life.

Over the holidays, I did not lose anything. But, I did not gain, so I am actually pretty pleased about this. In my job, I get a LOT of time off for holidays during this time of year. I have been out of work since Dec. 15th and today is my first day back. It really KILLS eating routines. I am a creature of routine and normally would have been on a better non-work routine, but I was so incredibly sick over the holidays. If I wasn't running around and traveling, I was sick. I had the cold from hell and I am just now feeling like a normal person.

All the coughing and nose-blowing has my port area irritated...has that every happened to any of you? It's just a little sore from using that muscle, I guess.

While I was congested, I barely ate a thing. I couldn't taste, and besides that, I think the band was much tighter than normal because I couldn't get much to go down. Our lovely Christmas dinner was wasted on me. However, I ate enough homemade peanut brittle to make up for that later. So many goodies this time of year! But, I think in a weird sort of way, I got it out of my system and I am so ready for getting back on track now.

I hope all of you had a wonderful holiday season and I am looking forward to catching up with everyone's journey while looking ahead to a great 2011! Happy New Year, everyone! :)