Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Old Gray Mare Ain't What She Used to Be

Growing up, I was the queen of Halloween. Driven by an insatiable love of candy I'd start trolling the neighborhood before dusk. I had a strategy. Go to the row houses for maximum time efficiency per candy drop. Sure sometimes you'd get full size can bars in the rich neighborhood, but some of those people give out pennies, raisins and, damn it all, toothbrushes. I'd take the pillowcases off my parents king size pillows. No matter what I brought home I managed to devour it within a day or two. And that was only because my mother tried to ration it.

Tonight, I realized I've gotten soft. I dressed up in costume to hand our candy. We give out good stuff - brand name chocolates and in the larger fun size not the teensy mini bar. Between visits from trick or treaters, I was reading Deepak Chopra's Perfect Health. The irony wasn't lost on me. I'm not a fan of Deepak, because I think a lot what he says is unsubstanciated crap. I only bought the book because it was 50 cents at the used bookstore and it was autographed by ol' Deepak. I collect autographed books just for the amusement. Deepak signed his, "Dear Vicki, Wishing you the joy of immortality. (Like I said, crap.)

While I was handing out candy, I was enjoying the occasional treat myself. After a few candy samples, I was clutching my stomach in pain. What happened to the iron gut that could gobble down the king sized pillow case of candy? Gone. Frankly, I'm blaming it on reading that Deepak.

If I've gotten weak, so have kids. In my youth, Toostie Rolls which were hard, impossibly chewy and able to pull out a dental filling. The only thing more dangerous was the JuJu Bee. Now Tootie Rolls are sealed like a candy bar instead of just a twisted wax paper. I had a Tootsie Roll and it was soft as butter. Also, the kids don't work for it. One set of kids had their parents driving them around and double parking in front of houses with candy. How lazy can you get? Those kids don't deserve Fun Sized Chocolates. They're just lucky I didn't have a toothbrush to give them.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Hot 100 - Week 5 BRRRR Edition

Time for the week t check-in with South Beach Steve's Hot 100.

Weekly Goals


Goal





































































































































































Result










































No wheat or potatoes Sunday – Thursday.











































































































































































Missed by a country mile. A family celebration and 2 days of business travel made this challenging. The real problem is that I didn't plan ahead for a celebration and 2 days of travel. I'm going to try to do some better meal planning with Steve to get both of our nutrition plans back in gear.















































Hill or Interval training every week.











































































































































































Not really.



















































Each week do 2 sessions each of Upper Body and Core.











































































































































































Some upper body and core on Monday and Tuesday, but not enough to meet the standard.





























































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Year End Goals
Goal





































































































































































Result










































Prepare to run a personal best at either the San Antonio or Las Vegas Half Marathon.











































































































































































I'm planning to run 12 miles on Sunday. I missed 2 days of workouts with the travel. I did pack my running gear, but the workdays bled out to 12-14 hour days. That doesn't leave time for workouts. I need to do a better job of holding my workout time as sacred.












































Lose 15 lbs (bumped up from 10)











































































































































































The scale is mocking me. I have a great week in week 4 and held steady. I have a bad week in week 5 and lose half a pound.













































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Hot 100 - Week 4. Ice Ice Baby Edition

Time for the week t check-in with South Beach Steve's Hot 100.

Weekly Goals


Goal

























































































































































Result






































No wheat or potatoes Sunday – Thursday.































































































































































✔ Done.







































Hill or Interval training every week.































































































































































✔ Done.









































Each week do 2 sessions each of Upper Body and Core.































































































































































✔ Done.







































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Year End Goals
Goal

























































































































































Result






































Prepare to run a personal best at either the San Antonio or Las Vegas Half Marathon.































































































































































Ran 10 miles Saturday. Consistent and strong.








































Lose 15 lbs (bumped up from 10)































































































































































Total mess. Didn't lose at all last week and my food has been terrible this week. Not good. Not good at all.























































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Monday, October 19, 2009

Weekly Interval Run Completed

Decided to forgo spending the week dreading my interval run and making excuses.

Done.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Hot 100 - Week 3. Now We're Cookin' Edition

Time for the week t check-in with South Beach Steve's Hot 100.

Weekly Goals


Goal
















































































































































Result



































No wheat or potatoes Sunday – Thursday.






















































































































































✔ Done. I had totally forgotten how much better I feel when I don't eat wheat. Darn wheat allergy.




































Hill or Interval training every week.






















































































































































✔ Done. No hills but intervals in both my long run and in the pool. I could do more here, but I'm doing okay.






































Each week do 2 sessions each of Upper Body and Core.






















































































































































✔ Done.
































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Year End Goals
Goal
















































































































































Result



































Prepare to run a personal best at either the San Antonio or Las Vegas Half Marathon.






















































































































































After yesterday's panic, I went and ran for 2 hours today. I was tired in the last mile and needed to take some walk breaks, but I was pretty strong.





































Lose 15 lbs (bumped up from 10)






















































































































































Dropped another 1.2 pounds, despite visiting Steve's family. I'm calling that a victory.














































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Time Has Come Today

Well, the time will come in 31 days. I'm running a half marathon on November 15.

And now I panic, because I haven't been doing enough miles and I only have 3 weeks to rebuild my mileage. Truthfully, I could complete a half marathon today if I had to do it, but it wouldn't be pretty.

Ah, well. Three weeks of training opportunity left and one week of recovery. Off to do long miles tomorrow before work.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Taking A Dip In The Swamp

If you follow the health news, you might have heard about the food swamp study published by the Rand Corporation. The study correlates obesity to the density of fast food restaurants, convenience stores and grocery stores in Los Angeles. It's interesting reading, even if you don't live in LA.

The study finds that the amount of fast food restaurants doesn't vary much between the obese and fit neighborhoods. What does vary is the amount of convenience and small grocery stores versus large grocery stores. The smaller stores sell what the study generously calls "high-energy foods". You know this stuff - potato chips, candy bars, hot dogs on those roller grills. These are the calorie bombs. Neighborhoods that have only small and convenience stores are food swamps of high caloric food options and a correspondingly higher rate of obesity. People with access to large groceries have a huge advantage in keeping their weight reasonable. Their stores have those high energy foods, but they also have fresh fruit, veggies, healthy grains. The stuff you need for a balanced diet that doesn't give you a butt that hangs off both sides of the barstool.

Even if you have access to large stores, there are times when you have to dip into the swamp of convenience foods. I've gone into 7-11 and hunted for anything reasonably healthy. (I get the 2 hard boiled eggs and whatever fruit cup they've got.) In fairness, 7-11 isn't the worst. A lot small neighborhood convenience stores make 7-11 look like a farmers market. At best, you might find Light Beer.

After reading the study, I decided to go back to carrying some healthy snacks in my car. Next time I need to storm the aisle of the convenience store, I want to remember that it's a calorie swamp.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Hot 100 - Week 2 - Warm and Bubbly Edition

Time for the week two check-in with South Beach Steve's Hot 100.

Weekly Goals


Goal







































































































































Result
































No wheat or potatoes Sunday – Thursday.













































































































































A near miss. The Costco sample pimps got me with peanut butter filled pretzel on Monday. I didn't even realize that I'd botched the goal until I was out of the store. Blast! I was so close.

































Hill or Interval training every week.













































































































































✔ Added some wicked hills and intervals to my long run today. There were some real blasts of "red zone" in climbs. Nice work.



































Each week do 2 sessions each of Upper Body and Core.













































































































































✔ Done.

























































































































































































































































































































































































































































Year End Goals
Goal







































































































































Result
































Prepare to run a personal best at either the San Antonio or Las Vegas Half Marathon.













































































































































Good stuff here. I'm working hard and consistently in the pool. Today I enjoyed running which I hadn't done for a long time.


































Lose 10 lbs (15 is my stretch goal).













































































































































Per yesterday's weigh in I dropped 5 pounds. That rocks, but I'm also mentally prepared if I plateau next week. However, I'm upgrading my goal to be 15 pounds by year end.







































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Love Will Keep Us Together

One of my gifts is that I am an excellent selector of fruit. You want the perfect apple or pear, just ask me. This summer, I selected a watermelon that was absolutely perfect with almost no white rind at all yet completely firm and not mushy. What can I say, selecting produce is my gift.

Last year, the best store for fresh produce in San Diego was the Food4Less. Hardly what you expect at a lower-end warehouse store, but this place had fantastic fruit - eight different types of apples including Winesaps and huge, perfect Honeycrisp apples for 98¢ a pound. Strawberries ripe, unbruised and out of season for $1.98 a quart. Plus, they had everything, bundles of fresh mint and sage, 10 different type of peppers, 6 different types of pears. It was like produce Heaven. Where were they getting such amazing produce? I drew the only logical conclusion. Someone at Food4Less was having an affair with the produce buyer.

Then it all fell apart. Food4Less had mealy apples, mushy peaches, bendy carrots and iceberg lettuce. Something went wrong. His fault? Her fault? Maybe a little of both? I don't know, but those were dark days of depressing fruit and veggies. I stopped making the extra trip to the Food4Less; it was too heartbreaking.

Yesterday I was in the neighborhood and I stopped in to grab a mango for salsa. Surprise. The beautiful produce is back. I was like a kid in a candy shoppe. Should I get the red, Bosc or D'Anjou pears? What could I do with this aromatic bundle of sage? I don't even know what this fruit is, but I want two.

All I can say is I hope those two crazy kids make a go of it this time.

Updated to include this photo of the watermelon I selected yesterday. In October. Yum.


Monday, October 05, 2009

The Workout Alternative

I cleaned the garage this weekend. It was the hardest workout I've ever done. Actually, it was far more than a garage cleaning. It was a complete restack of all of the storage in my house - boxes under beds, closets, dressers, kitchen cabinets. Everything had to be pulled out, sorted and reorganized.

Our house is small, not by Southern California standards, but by 2 people and a cat live here standards. This is a 1920's bungalow with 2 tiny coat closets. (Oh, how I miss the 3 walk in closets I left behind in Texas.) Clutter stresses me, so I'd much rather toss something in a box and move it to the garage than let it sit on a counter. It's a bad habit, but the house always looks very tidy - as long as no one sees the garage.

Another part of the problem is I've acquired different stuff since I moved to California because my life is different here. However, I've still got relics of my Texas stuff hogging space. In California, I acquired a bike, 2 lawn mowers (left by the previous owner), clothing is escalating sizes, more cookbooks, Steve. These things all take space. Over time, that's meant an endless parade of half full boxes going out to the garage.

A big part of the weekend was evaluating what gets the oh-so-scarce closet space. For instance, I have roughly 500 pairs of shoes in this house. That made sense when I wore heels all the time. I now spend 95% of my time in flip flops or running shoes; it's time to reclaim the closet that's a been a shrine 4 inch heels. Oh and those six 6 cigarette pants? I'm not ever going to be that thin again.

It was hours of sorting, laundry, tossing, dropping items off the nicest items at the battered womens shelter. There still a fair amount of work to be done, but it's already a lot better. I've got until the end of the week when Father Joe's is scheduled to pick up the rest of it.

All in all, it would have been far easier to do the 8 mile run I'd planned.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Hot 100 - Warming Up Edition

Time for our check-in. Good results on the weekly goals, but need to push myself a bit on my end of year goal. Not bad for the warm up week.

Weekly Goals


Goal






































































































Result





















No wheat or potatoes Sunday – Thursday.












































































































✔ I started this goal after my parents left on Monday morning. Got a bit lucky here, because the curry we ordered last night didn't have potatoes. I'd forgotten to check the menu.






















Hill or Interval training every week.












































































































✔ Not my best or longest run, but did it.
























Each week do 2 sessions each of Upper Body and Core.












































































































✔ I'd like to get in one more core session this weekend



























































































































































































































































































































Year End Goals


Goal






































































































Result





















Prepare to run a personal best at either the San Antonio or Las Vegas Half Marathon.












































































































Mixed results here. I should have run more. Unfortunately, I'm not enjoying running right now. I gotta get back that lovin' feeling so I'm doing shorter runs during the week. So I don't fall backwards I'm doing my conditioning work in the pool























Lose 10 lbs (15 is my stretch goal).












































































































Haven't reached the goal obviously, but back on structured eating and hitting the workouts consistently.