Following Your Dreams…

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Can Be Hard When You Start Doing It…

I haven’t been posting a lot in the past few months, or at all, because my life has been a bit hectic. My last semester at school was one of the worst I have had since graduating high school. All those doubts, worries, and stresses associated with my LDs (learning disabilities) seemed to rear their ugly head. It didn’t help that my health has also taken a dive. In the past few weeks we have a received a confirmation of Sleep Apnea from the doctor and next week I get to go in for my face mask so I get to go to bed looking and sounding a lot like Darth Vader. This is my first step to getting my health back in line including getting my weight off because it seems when you don’t go into REM, you don’t produce the hormones to control or produce a natural metabolism. Thankfully, I passed my classes… didn’t die in a car wreck due to falling asleep at the wheel… things are being done to make life better and the support I am receiving from my family has been lifesaving because I had reached the end of my rope with no idea where to turn.

At the time all this is happening, I finally decided its time to really start following my dream. No longer mess around with just writing for fun or for one day but to sit down and actually do it. So here I am, not blogging and spending as much as my very rare free time to try to write and finish a novel by the end of the summer. With everything going on this past semester I didn’t get to finish my other story, which wasn’t working in any way but is still there. I barely had time to write. BUT! At the end of the summer I am attending a Writers Conference where I may have a chance (slim, very very slim) to sit and pitch a book.

FOCUS!!!

I just finished my first edit on the first 10 chapters of my book. I am nervous but I liked what I have read. So often, with my other writings I have gone back and wondered what I was thinking when I typed those words. This time, it feels different. Part of me believes that it is because I am not trying to write something that isn’t me. I have tried many genres and it seems teenage angst is something I can write. Of course, this is probably because I was a total drama queen and experienced a lot of craziness when I was growing up. Seeming to find trouble even when I wasn’t searching for it. I do hope to go back to some of my other pieces and flesh them out when I have time to, heck there are more stories than I can count bouncing around in my head. You just need to focus to get it done.

My blog from here on out will probably be a lot more about my writings, health, weight loss than everyday life. Hopefully, I can remember to post more often. Please note that all my blogs are done in the free-writing format – I don’t worry about editing. Which is probably stupid for a person wanting to be a writer when they grow up but meh!

Healthy Kid Meals?

I have been seeing this tread online lately: making healthy kid meals at home. This is an easy thing to do, for the most part, but I have been paying very close attention to the meals at restaurants for kids when I am out with my son and I am so disappointed. Even with the places that have “healthy meals” for them. This generally breaks down to switching fruit out for french fries. Fruit which is usually apple slices which yes are healthy but are still pretty sugary. As for drinks the only healthy drink is usually milk or water. Sometimes you can get an apple juice – which is even more sugar. Very rarely, if ever, you get a choice of vegetables – even carrot sticks. And I am not even talking about just fast food restaurants but also regular sit down places.

Now, there seems to be a basic idea of what kids eat at meals and this usually is: fried chicken nuggets, spaghetti (with tomato sauce no meat), grilled cheese, pizza, quesadillas, fried, fried, fried… and fried. Do we really need to look any further to why our kids become picky eaters? And only want to eat crap? Do we continue to have french fries available in kids meals, so we won’t feel guilty for eating them while our kid munches down on carrots or apples?

I can not say I am not guilty. The other day I was craving a burger from Wendy’s and my kid got one too but my husband got him fries. We try to be very careful with giving him crap food. We try not eating out as much because its such a temptation. And when we do, we try hard to be careful in his meal while we are out. We hit Quizno’s the other day on a quick meal out while running errands and I was a little surprised in a place that has a wide range of choices of meats, cheese and vegetables had such a crappy kids meal menu. Their choices: Flatbreads – 1 with three cheeses and the other with cheese & marinara then a meatball monster. Luckily they had a choice of build your own and I did just that… I got him a turkey, cheese with tomatoes, lettuce and avocado. While his only side choices were a cookie or chips… my husband and I got the baked chips and ate them ourselves. As for a drink… we had lemonade which I watered down.

At least I had the choice. I don’t have a choice in a lot of places when fried chicken nuggets (which, yes my son does enjoy) are the main choice. Why not bake them? Or do nuggets without the breading and grilled? My son loves grilled nuggets just as much as Fried. One of the few places that bakes their chicken nuggets: Target. They don’t have a fryer on hand just that giant rolling oven they make their flatbreads, pizzas and chicken strips in.

I read about how kids are fed in other countries, like France, where they do not have kids menus. Kids eat the exact same food as parents. These kids generally not only are less picky eaters but also have a greater appreciation for food as they grow up beyond just greasy yumminess that we all grow up on in the US.

I am trying to do this but it is hard when that $2.99 meal comes up and he needs to eat as well. I don’t mind sharing with my son but I am trying to break him from the habit of not eating his food so he can eat off my plate instead. At dinner, we make sure he has the same food we do. I make him the same breakfast I have on 5 out of 7 days. But when we are running errands and we have to stop for a quick meal we are generally not very lucky. One of the few places in the Denver area that has a reasonable kids menu is Ikea… they actually serve kids vegetables with their mac & cheese.

So, what do we do? For now, I am going to just start feeding him off of my plate again unless I see better meals for kids on the menus. It’s not like they don’t give us enough food on our plates.

Work Outs: 7-19-09 to 7-29-09

Weird week and a half – workouts are really off due to my nephew visiting which means he is a priority. But here it is:

7-19-09, Sunday

Rest Day

7-20-09, Monday

Swimming:

600 – 50 free/50breast for each 100m
200 – kicking – 50free/50 breast for each 100m

Time: 35m
Cal Burn: 557

Would of gone longer but lighting storm came in and they closed the pool…

7-21-09, Tuesday

todays workout – got cut short due to a sick nephew.

Warm Up
5m – Running, Treadmill, 5.3, Incline 4
Stretching

Workout

4 x 15 @ 50# – Squats (5-half, all the way down then half way up/5-half, half way down then back up/5 – full squats)

4 x 12 @ 5# dumbbells – incline shoulder raises

4 x 1m – chest press, bar only

5 x 12 @ 15# dumbbell – incline 1 arm row, right
5 x 12 @ 15# dumbbell – incline 1 arm row, left

3 x 20 – incline crunches

5m – stretching

Est. Time 1h10m
Est. Cal Burn: 748

7-22-09, Wednesday

Warm Up
10m – Elliptical, Weight Loss Program, Resistance Level 5
Stretching

Workout

4 x 20 @ 15# – Chest Press w/ 20s rest between sets

4 x 15 @ 40# – lat pull/w 20s rest between sets

4 x 15 @ 20 (for 2) 25 (for 2) – Bicep Curls (superset with tricep dips)
4 x 15 @ 70 (for 2) 50 (for 2) – tricept dips

4 x 12 @ 50# – leg extensions

Stretching

Cool Down
15m – Elliptical, Hill Program, Resistance Level 5

Est. Time: 1h25m
Est. Cal Burn: 1,118

7-23-09, Thursday

Rest Day

7-24-09, Friday

todays workout – got cut short because the day care was closed and limited on what I could do with a 5 year old with me at the gym

Warm Up
10m – Intervals, 3.5mph – 5.5mph, Incline 4
Stretching

Workout

3 rounds
20 @ 22lb barbell – Side Step Ups on 16″ step (1 rep was twice over – go over right then back over left)
40 @ 22lb barbell – Step Up w/ Kickbacks on 16″ step
25 @ 8# med ball – jackknifes

Stretching

Time: 45m
Cal Burn…. no clue

Today was a cheat day – I spent the next 6 hours walking around at a large indoor arcade/play place for kids with an all you can eat buffet… ate both dinner and lunch there – ate as many veggies as possible with one of the “healthier” pastas… but had small servings of ice cream and apple cobbler one one slice of pizza. I was weak I know. But whatever, I don’t care – my main concern is that my nephew was happy and having a good time. Thought about going back to the gym but my knees are killing me from basically standing for about 5 hours.

Also – did my BFI today… 27.9%. Weight – exactly 210

7-25-09, Saturday

Rest Day/Study Day for Finals

7-26-09, Sunday

30m – Elliptical Crossramp, Weight Loss Trainer, Resistance level 5

Circuit

Tricep Push Down w/ V Bar
15 @ 25#
12 @ 35#
9 @ 45#
12 @ 35#
15 @ 25#

5 x 15 @ 30# – Low Row with lay back
5 x 15 @ 30# – Chest Press

Stretching

Est. Time 1 hour
Est. Cal Burn 764 (384 from elliptical/384 from circuit according to calorie count)

7-27-09, Monday

teaching swimming to my nephew for an hour… lots of treading and leisure time

45m – hard swimming, mix of breast and free. stopped when my shoulder started giving me problems.

Est. Time: 1h 45m
Est. Cal Burn: 1225 (yes I counted my teach my nephew – not easy work and burned about 500 cals )

7-28-09, Tuesday

Rest Day

7-29-09, Wednesday

Warm Up
10m – Elliptical, Crossramp, Glute Trainer, Resistance 9
Stretching

Toning – each grouping is a super set

4 x 15 @ 40# – Lat Pull Down with 1 hand reversed (switch hands each set)
4 x 12 @ 30# – cable tricep kickbacks

54 @ 40# – Seated Row (5 sets with random reps)
54 @ 10# (last with 20#) – arm straighting thing, the opposite of an arm curl, left arm
54 @ 10# (last with 20#) – arm straighting thing, the opposite of an arm curl, right arm

50 @ 10# + bar – deadlifts (heels on weights to lift them up and get some more focus on the whole back leg)

3 set @ 45# – seated calf burnouts… basically did as many as I could before my calves gave out (about 20 each set)

Cardio
20m – Treadmills, Incline 3, Intervals: 1m15s – walking (3.2) 1m – running (5.5 or 5.7)

32m – stationary bike, weight loss program, level 2

Est. Time: 2 hours
Est. Cal Burn: 1,363


How Far Have I Come?

On this diet?

This is me at C4 a few years ago:

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this is me a few weeks ago

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That is the difference of 60# looks… not huge but its something

Spinach Breakfast Sandwich

Made a really yummy breakfast this morning, thought I would share it with you:

Spinach Breakfast Sandwich

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Ingredients
1 – 7-Organic Sprouted 100% Whole Grain Flourless English Muffins – English Muffins (160cals)
1 – Wedge Light Swiss Original (35cal)
1 – large egg (70cal) – use the whole egg not just whites for the additional nutrients
1 – slice of smoked turkey breast (est 20cal)
few leafs of pre-steamed spinach (est 8cal)

Directions

slice and toast muffin, while this is toasting… cut or shred the slice of turkey breast and sautee slightly in pan with Pam. Crack one large egg into the pan and scramble (I don’t scramble in a bowl and then pour, cause I don’t like to add water or milk to my scrambled eggs). Once the egg is scrambled and cooked, place spinach (I used pre-steamed spinach because it helps with the next step) and place on top of your scrambled egg. Place a pot cover over the pan and turn off the heat. Allow the egg/spinach to heat up with the steam while you take your muffin out of the toaster over. Spead half of the cheese wedge on the bottom portion and the other half on the top portion. Take egg out of the pan and place on the muffin then finish with the top being put on.

Enjoy!

Its really yummy.

Nutritional information: Grade B+ on caloriecount.about.com

Est. Total Cals: 293
Fat – 26.2% (9 grams)
Protein – 26.5% (20 grams)
Carbohydrates – 47.3% (36 grams)
Sodium – 774 mg
Sugar – 1 grams
Cholesteral – 232 mg
S. Fat – 3 grams
Fiber – 7 grams

est. time to cook – 6 – 7mins

Workouts 5-3-09 to 5-9-09

5-3-09, Sunday

Warm Up
20m – Treadmill, 3.8mph, Random Inclines

Workout
3 x 15 @ 90# – Seated Leg Press
3 x 15 @ 60# – Seated Calf Press

Hip Abductions/Adductions
15 @ 125#
12 @ 135#
10 @ 145#
10 @ 145#
15 @ 125#

10m – Treadmill, 3.6mph, Interval Inclines

3 x 25 – Stability Ball Crunch
5 x 6 (each side) – Floor wipers

10m – Stairstepper, Level 3, Fat Burner

That was it – not a huge amount but something. Had a great day so far today. Its been really relaxing.

Est. Cals Burned: 961 (time around 1.5 hours) I took it slow…

5-4-09, Monday

32m on treadmill, 3.0mph, incline 12. Slow and steady and stopped when I started to get lightheaded.

Started getting sick this day

5-5-09, Tuesday

Home sick

5-6-09, Wednesday

Home Sick

5-7-09, Thursday

today was the 1st day back at the gym and I did pretty crappy.

Warm Up
10m – Treadmill, 3.5mph, Incline 3
Stretching

Workout
15 @ 85# – Seated Leg Press
8 x 20sec @ 90# – Seated Leg Press
3 x 10 @ 10# dumbbells in both hands – lunges, both legs

2m – Treadmill, 3.2mph, Incline 4

then I got dizzy and lightheaded – so I stopped. I will be going back tomorrow. Hopefully I won’t be spending the day feeling like I am going to pass out.

5-8-09, Friday

Pushed myself today… I am beat! But I am very happy with it!

Warm Up
10m – Treadmill, 3.8mph, Interval Inclines
Stretching

Workout

Bicep Curl w/ ez bar
25# – 12
35# – 10
45# – 8
35# – 10
25# – 12

Tricep Push Down w/ v-bar
25# – 12
35# – 10
45# – 8
35# – 10
25# – 12

3 x 15 @ 70# – Seated Row
3 x 12 @ 30# – Chest Press

5m – Treadmill, 3.8mph, 6incline

Hip Abductions
135# – 12
145# – 10
155# – 8
165# – 8
135# – 15

Hip Adductions
125# – 12
135# – 10
145# – 8
155# – 8
125# – 15

3 x 15 @ 8# medicine ball – back extensions
3 x 10 – Roman Chair w/ straight leg

5m – Treadmill, Intervals, 3.8mph

2 x 10 @ 10# dumbbells – lat raises

3 x 10 @ 8# medicine ball – jackknifes
25 – Bridge

10m – Stair stepper

I think there is more but I can’t remember.

Time – 1h15m
Est. Cals Burn – 850

5-9-09, Saturday

Warm Up
10m – Elliptical Crossramp, Glute Trainer, Resistance 8
Stretching

Work Out – lots of super sets

3 x 12 @ 50# – Laying Leg Curls
3 x 12 @ 55# – Leg Extensions

2 laps down the hall in the gym about 50 yards each way – running

5 x 10 @ 70# – Smith Squats
4 x 10 – Incline Push Ups (on my knees of course)

2 laps down the hall in the gym about 50 yards each way – running

15 x 15secs – Wall Seat Press? (with 15sec rest in between) where you sit against the wall and hold urself up, can’t remember the exact name)

10 – Reverse Crunches
2 x 15 – Bridge w/ Stability Ball
2 x 10 – Russian Mason Twists w/ 6# medicine ball

2 laps down the hall in the gym about 50 yards each way – running

2 x 15 – Bridge w/ Stability Ball
2 x 10 – Russian Mason Twists w/ 6# medicine ball
10 – leg raises

30m – Random Inclines, Treadmill, 3.0mph, 0 – 10 incline

Cool Down
2m – Cool down, Treadmill, 2.1mph, Flat surface
5m – Stretching

Believe it or not – that workout took me 2hours to do… it doesn’t seem like a helluva a lot from here but that was with some breaks to catch my breath and not throw up. During the squats/push ups I was dying.

Est. Cal Burn: 1360

I think the forced rest I have had these past two weeks have done me some good. I am feeling great. Sore but great. I had a ton of fun at the gym today playing with different things I have been afraid to do in the past.

Please note – you can follow me during my workouts on my twitter account! Its not a full blown account but I do post while working out and comments et al… http://twitter.com/varza

Workouts and A Realization

Weighed in this morning – a solid 218 – a total loss of .8 lbs since last week.

I’ve been looking at my calorie intake vs my burn and I am wondering if I am not eating enough.

According to a calculator I just did I can eat :

Quote:
If you exercise for 60 minutes each day, you will be able to reach your goal weight with 2444.3 calories per day.

And according to the online food journal I use…

You should consume about 2250 calories a day to reach your goal weight of 195 lbs.

This is at a reasonable weight loss average of 1.5 lbs per week, which should be reached by July 05, 2009.

Remember that this estimate is based on your body weight, height, age, gender, and activity level. It may vary slightly depending on other factors.

I am averaging about 600 – 900 calorie burn per workout (avg of the course of the past 7 days), adding to my avg daily burning of 2790… that is about 3390 – 3690. I don’t even want to think about those days I burned 1500 cals during a workout and barely ate anything.

Intake wise… over the past 7 days I have avg about 1500 – 1900 calories per day.

Giving me a difference of 1790 – 1890 calories between my intake vs. burn. I have read that you should have more then 1200 calories difference?

I am wondering if I am not eating enough so when I have a cheat day all that extra is being held hostage by my body because it feels it is being starved? I think so. But we will see what happens. I will be talking to my trainer tonight and seeing what he thinks.

3-18-09 Workout

Warm Up
15mins – Treadmill 2.5mph incline intervals.
Stretching

Power Aerobics Class – basically:

Group Power is your hour of power! This 60 minute barbell program strengthens all your major muscles in an inspiring, motivating group environment with fantastic music and awesome instructors with simple, athletic movements such as squats, lunges, presses and curls, Group Power is for all ages and fitness levels. Discover results, discover Group Power!

3-19-09 Workout

20mins – Elliptical Crossramp, Resistance 7, Cross Training – lots of leg work.
3 x 15 @ 80# – Calf Machine
3mins – Intervals, Incline 5, 3.5 & 4.8 (this is when I realized I forgot to do my inhaler before workout and couldn’t breathe. d’oh!)
17mins – Treadmill, Incline 5, 3.5mph

Thats about it. My body is still really sore from the power workout. Today is my rest day. Back to the gym on Saturday for more fun and games!

Nothing much else, getting ready to set an appointment to get my hair done. I’ll post a pic of it when I get done being made pertty…