Friday, January 29, 2010

On opportunities and life.

Wow, the title sounds super serious, and I guess to a certain extent it is. I've had a lot on my mind recently (partly responsible for the running) and I've been doing a lot of thinking.

On the good news end of things, I had an AMAZING opportunity presented to me, as a violinist! I will be performing some works that a colleague of mine wrote at a university in Missouri in March! It's going to be very exciting, and I definitely have my work cut out for me in learning the pieces! (They are quite difficult!) I am super excited!

On the other end of things, I broke up with my bf over 2 months ago and we were going to remain friends, but now he is acting less and less like that's going to be possible, at least not for a very long time. I don't get it! You know who I am...why did you say that you were committed to remaining friends if you really didn't mean it? I know that I am partly responsible, because I've gotten a little emotional a few times and he feels like he's hurting me. But seriously, I'll be OK, even if I did miss him a little in a boyfriend way, while we are hanging out as friends. Whatever. I DON'T want to be that whiny little ex-girlfriend, so I'm giving him as much space as he needs. He knows my number whenever he wants to call.

Whew. Felt good to get that off my chest.

One of the (many) reasons I know that I am 100% over my eating disorder is that I haven't felt any need/urge to engage in any unhealthy behaviors over the break up and/or the general male population being slightly infuriating in the past few months! Yes, true, I'm exercising a lot to take my mind off things, but I'm eating plenty to make up for it, and I'm approaching exercise from a positive mental standpoint of "let's see what I can accomplish today" and/or training for my first 2 half marathons and I can honestly say that the thought of how many calories I've burned really almost never crosses my mind, except to make sure I'm getting enough calories. (I.e. extra large breakfasts before long runs, energy gels and/or honey packets during exercise, extra sleep to help my body repair, etc.)

OK, onward to one of my favorite topics: FOOD! :)
(And just a note to any new readers, this is NOT EVEN CLOSE to all of what I eat in a given day. I simply don't have time or inclination to take pictures of absolutely everything. Maybe one of these days it would be a fun project for the blog.)

Here is breakfast today, *x2* (as in 2 bowls roughly this size)

-frozen blueberries and blackberries on the bottom (hence the purple milk!)
-skim milk (unmeasured)
-Kashi GoLean original (unmeasured)
-PB (probably a bit more than a TB-not exactly sure)

*This bowl times 2* I was hungry after yesterday's workout which made me feel really bad ass:

I did all three triathlon sports! *What's the best workout you've gotten in recently?*

At my first day of swimming in God knows how long (like at least 4 years!), I was dying after just one time across the pool. I kept at it for 12 laps (300 meters) and then called it good. :)

So then I did about 30 minutes of arms and abs conditioning. **The former gymnast in me actually really loves sit-ups, push-ups, strength work, etc! Yes, I know I'm strange!**

Then, with a lot of extra time on my hands (I was barely teaching yesterday!) I hoped on a stationary bike and rode an easy 7 miles in roughly 33 minutes.

Got home (ate a Luna bar on the way home from the gym), grabbed this lunch of grilled cheese (full fat, of course!), avocado, hummus and spinach:


And drank this mixture:

Then I was off running, literally.

My church has a (small and informal) running group so I decided to check it out. Keep in mind that it's ~20 degrees here, and there was snow and ice all over the track! It made me feel very hardcore, like Dean Karnazes running over Antarctica! :)

I ran roughly 4.3 miles in a 55 minutes. My pace is slow. I'm OK with that. It was just cool to do all three triathlon events in the same day! My sister is a much better swimmer than myself, and we've talked about doing a sprint triathlon together. I think it would be super kick ass and I'm hoping that it'll happen over this summer! Nothing official yet that I'm training for! (Especially since I have A LOT of ground to make up in the swimming department!)

Anyway, onto some other food that was eaten recently.

Several breakfasts that are all quite similar. (I go through nut butter like it's my JOB!)

And lunches or snacks:


Lentils over sauteed veggies.


Much better when topped with hummus!

(I top PB bread with frozen berries--doesn't everyone?)

Finally, some recent running gear purchases:

(Super excited about this top! And by the way, Marshall's and T.J.Maxx are excellent for finding cheap but good workout clothes!)

And on a random note, I found some awesome washcloths at Target there's 6 of them for just $10! My roommates seem to have absconded with the ones that I had, so I bought these, as I can't find the ones I had!

Sorry for the really long post! Hopefully you made it through the whole thing!

Here's a few giveaways to enter:

Marlene's Lift Your Sole giveaway.

Oh Nuts giveaway.

Nathan's Hydration Belt.

Have a great day! I've got to get some practicing in!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Grateful for exercise.

Good morning, I hope you are all having a lovely start to your week!

I have a pretty empty day today (just teaching a lesson!) and I am so excited about having the time off. My weekend was very busy and did not include a whole lot of sleep. It was a pretty emotionally draining weekend too, and I am hoping this week is slightly less so. (Guys, need I say more?) What did you do over your weekend?

Anyway, I've been working out A LOT recently and I've realized that it's my stress relief, the thread holding my life together, if you will. OK, that sounds a bit over dramatic, but seriously, I feel much better about everything in my life after a long hard workout. Yesterday for example, I ran 5 miles in the morning and another 5 in the afternoon!

(Nothing MAJOR is going on, in the grand scheme of things... especially with regard to events like the Haitian earthquake or something like that. And I will be OK. Just to clarify.)

Anyway, the running group was super cool! I got there late (had trouble finding it) and I just started running on my own because at least I as there, at a nice park, and I wanted to run. And I did meet up with one of the runners that had invited me. So that was cool and I assured him that I would be there next week on time! (Although I have to play at my church, so I have to postpone it until the following week...darn it!) But it was nice to get to talk with other runners a bit (although I'm still in disbelief that I call myself a runner!) And after church, I just felt the running urge again, so I went to my gym and ran around their (tiny!) indoor track, where one mile equals 15 laps!! I did another 5 miles and yes, I counted the laps. :)

It probably didn't hurt that I put some new excellent work out music on my iPod. I am currently IN LOVE with Josh Ritter and I got his live CD from a show he did in his home town in Idaho. My favorites of that CD include:

-Good Man
-Harrisburg
-Kathleen
-Snow is Gone

Check them out if you want new workout music! In fact, I should do a post on workout music soon, because it's so important to me!

Quickly, onto food. Because I need to get to the gym...I *might* even try swimming today!

Delicious and nutritious breakfast this morning:

-eggs
-sauteed kale, zucchini, mushrooms and spinach with EVOO and cheese on top
-Green drink (from TJs) with a little of this added:

I was at a marathon training seminar and they said that there has been some preliminary research done on tart cherry juice benefiting runners. Has anyone heard this? Anymore information for me?!

Saturday was a super busy day for me. I worked almost straight from 9am to 11pm! I stopped at Bruegger's for a veggie bagel sandwich which was OK, but they FORGOT the cream cheese! (And I was eating in my car, so I didn't notice while in the store!) How lame!


Plus the pickles. (I've been trying really hard to add more sodium into my diet because I've been getting dizzy after only 3 or 4 miles of running and I end up with that gritty layer on my skin, which means that I'm a salty sweater. And naturally I just don't get very much sodium. So I've had to make a conscious effort to vamp it up and the dizziness has improved!)


I got a free sample of Glowelle's supposed "beauty drink", whatever that is.


It sounds a little suspicious to me, and it didn't taste very good (sorry!) but it had some good antioxidants + rehydrated me after running. And it was free! So I drank it. I wouldn't buy it though.

On busy days, I've been eating a lot of these. They're hands down my favorite bar ever!


Seriously, how could you not love something with so much chocolate?!


Here's a random bowl of oatmeal that was on my camera:


(There wasn't as much AB as it looks like on there! Promise!)

It's the usual oat bran, cottage cheese, AB, frozen berries and honey!

Finally, I received these cookies as a gift. They are from Taiwan and they're pretty good! I LOVE trying foods from other cultures! It is so exciting and I *wish* I could travel more and try more different foods and have more experiences of other cultures! What is YOUR favorite food from another country that is truly part of their culture? (Going to a Italian Restaurant in America doesn't really count, neither does "French" fries.) :) What was the most interesting thing you've ever eaten from another culture?



Alright, I'm off now. Have a great day!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I did it: I ran 14 miles!

I DID IT!! I EXCEEDED MY OWN EXPECTATIONS AND RAN 14 MILES!!!

*Calms down*

OK, sorry about that! But I am extremely excited and pleased! Because I am the runner who COULD NOT run even 1/2 a mile about 5 months ago! Remember this post? Or this one?!

I struggled with running for a long time. I got winded and had to slow down. Now granted, I was running too fast and I was extremely impatient with myself. But I kept at it, blindly pushing aside negativity and discouragement and kept plodding along. It wasn't always easy, and it's still NOT. I still *want* to quit after less than a mile. Every single step is still extremely difficult for me. Running does not come naturally to me, but it does come. I have had to work hard at it. I have been running at least 2 or 3 days a weeks, maybe 10-20 miles each week + my normal cross training (LOVE my Expresso bikes, and of course strength training...that comes MUCH easier to me!)

In the coldest days I ran inside. Whenever it was even reasonably warm, I'd go outside. I tried to just run as much as possibly could, and I walked when I had to. I still almost can't believe my progress. I'm not exactly a professional athlete or anything, but I am still stunned with where I am at today.
I WANT to keep it up!
I want to go farther.
I want to continue getting better that myself.
It's exciting.
It's hard.
And it's worth it!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

After yesterday's run, I have been hobbling around all day like an old lady am incredibly sore. So I stopped by a local running store to buy the stick. This:


It is amazing! My right outer shin and both of my quads are killing me...in a good way! I love the feeling of being sore. It's AMAZING!

I also picked up a few flavors of GU gels that I can't wait to try on another long run.
(I bought the Tri-Berry, the Vanilla Bean and the Chocolate Outrage...hope they're good!)

But while I was there, I was talking with the team members and they were all so supportive of my running and encouraged me to join their local running club.

*jaw drops*

"Lisa?" "Join a running club?!"

Uhhh...

"OK!"

And so, I am TERRIFIED, but strangely excited for Sunday morning. (They also do tempo and interval runs on Wednesdays but I won't be able to make very many due to my work.) But I AM going to go! I don't know what to expect but they assured me that there are all levels of runners there, including people slower than me (didn't know that was possible! Hah!) and I'm going to do it! I really want to meet other runners locally, and it will make the long runs more fun! So we shall see what that brings!

Anyway, I am headed to bed. I would love to put up a real post, but I have been baby-sitting many mornings and I have to get up early again to watch the most wonderful, sweet, adorable little girl. And then go straight to teach from 2-8pm!

So I'll catch up on all your blogs tomorrow night!


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Death by chocolate!

I hope everyone has had a good Sunday and an excellent week! You all ready for a new week? Bring it on!

Tell me: what are you looking forward to in this coming week?

For me, I'd have to say that I'm looking forward to my long run tomorrow (it's going to be 43 and NOT snowing plus I have the time so I'm going to try to do 13 miles! Yes! An entire half marathon! I feel confident...wish me luck!)

Additionally, I am looking forward to just another week of work...I only felt like this past week I was finally mentally back. And I do like my daily structure of teaching, etc.

And finally, I am looking forward to good food! Like the following....

I have to tell you about an incredibly exciting bowl of death-by-chocolate oat bran that I made:


Different angle, same meal:


Seriously, this is the most healthy, yet chocolately thing I've ever eaten! (And I have a SERIOUS sweet tooth!)

What in this delicious bowl?

-oat bran
-pumpkin
-cocoa powder
-1/2 to 1 packet of Truvia
-cottage cheese
-1 square broken up of Lindt 90% dark chocolate (!!)
-tiny bit of raw honey
-almond butter

OMG!!

Yes, I'll be making it frequently!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Despite all the chocolate, I have also been eating my vegetables...promise!

This was sauteed broccoli, spinach, and mushrooms with hummus, and garnished with tomatoes and carrots.

This one was a veggie and egg scramble (veggies were yellow squash and spinach) with salsa and a piece of spelt toast with Almond Butter.

And here's another excellent meal: eggs with full fat cheddar cheese, a piece of tofu I had baked with soy sauce, lots of sauteed spinach with cracked pepper and two pieces of spelt toast, one with almond butter and the other with cheese and hummus!

And then this...was leftover from a restaurant that I went to with a friend. It's a huge stuffed manicotti filled with ricotta and mozzarella and is INDESCRIBABLY delicious! I'm really at a loss for words! It rocked me world, and I wish I could eat a huge plate of it with all of my fellow bloggers also partaking to get to share in the experience!

(I had 2 of the same size ones and the restaurant and just brought home the 3rd one. When I reheated it, I added steamed spinach and half a piece of bread [that was also leftover] to it to make a meal!)

...

I eat a lot...obviously! I've been realizing (again) that I eat far more than most women I know! After years of ED/DE when I counted obsessively, I was finally able to break the cycle! So now, I have no idea of my exact calories (and I'm sure it varies quite wildly, day to day) but I'm guess I average around 2500. I am reasonably active and I have a fair amount of muscle. I love strength training way more than cardio. (That's the former gymnast in me speaking!) Anyway, the point is, I'm finally OK with my body simply requiring more fuel. When I was "recovered" (technically, but definitely not emotionally!) I tried to limit my calories to xxxx per day. I was grossly underestimating my own personal needs and I ended up binging quite frequently, simply due to extreme hunger! I have found that the only way for me to prevent binging is to consistently be eating more than I think thought I "should".

(And obviously, I don't post everything I eat on this blog! In real life I am actually eating every 2-3 hours...no joke! Think Luna bars, PB on carrots or fruit, sandwiches, etc. My body is extremely efficient and I thank it for that, especially after all the years of abuse!)

Alrighty, sorry about that tangent. Back to...FOOD!

Here's a breakfast that I've enjoyed on several mornings of the past week.




-oat bran
-pumpkin
-goji berry trail mix (my favorite, but too expensive for a regular basis!)
-cottage cheese
-almond butter
-raw honey, this stuff:
I found it on the cheap at T.J.Maxx of all places. And this stuff is GOOD!!! It's been making a daily breakfast appearance!! And it's SOOO flavorful that you really don't need very much to add a richness to an entire bowl of oatmeal! :)

Have you discovered any new food products lately that you've been loving?!

(Just a thought...would you be interested in a giveaway of this honey?!)


Speaking of giveaways, if you want to win some Greek yogurt, head on over to Blue Sky World's blog for two different giveaways:

Chobani

and

Oikos

She's so generous that she's also having a giveaway for chocolate!

And now, I'm off to bed so that I can wake up early-ish and run 13.1 miles!!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I JUST learned how to do this:

This.

Did it seriously take me that long to learn how to format it? (Talking like months of blog envy of others!) I had to do a Google search. Is this common knowledge, and I am just supremely out of the loop?!

Sad day, people.

Well, not really that sad because I learned how to do it!! Whoo! Expect to see an egregious excess a bit more of it in future posts, because it's brilliant and cracks me up every single time I read about it on other blogs!

I can't believe I just spent that much time on that topic! :) I obviously need to get a life am easily amused.

What's one thing you have learned recently? No matter how seemingly trivial, it'll be way cooler than mine...so let me know!

And now for some lovely eats of the past few days!


My most blog worthy meal:

-sauteed veggies (I bought a HUGE bag of spinach from Costco, which is why you'll see a lot of spinach in the next few days!)
-scrambled eggs with cheddar cheese
-leftover eggplant salad from WF
-Red Wine!! :)

This meal is quite similar...just add avocado, ketchup and crackers.

And yet another one: (I tend to go through phases of eating a certain food/meals frequently. It has nothing to do with ED behaviors; really I'm just lazy and in this case, the sauteed veggies and eggs meals fulfills: cheap, easy, healthy and delicious!)


One night this week I treated myself to a beer that I was looking forward to:

It was ONE OF THE BEST BEERS I'VE EVER HAD! So delicious! I wish I could buy it around me! :( However, I am now making it a goal to try various other cherry beers in hopes of finding a good substitute. It's a reeeally tough mission, but someone's got to do it and I accept! ;)

Moving forward--here's a very typical snack:

(Greek yogurt, Fiber One, almond butter, banana)

and another one:

(apple and AB)

Also, a VERY exciting (to me) breakfast:

(Up close and personal: oats, Greek yogurt, strawberries, AB, and trail mix...and the slice of toast from above is spelt bread with AB)

And another semi-exciting breakfast. (Well not at all, but I get extremely excited about ANY breakfast! It + coffee is why I get out of bed!)

Lastly, I had an Emergen-C packet in their new tropical flavor, which I LOVED! In general, I am a HUGE fan of their products, because they taste great and are so convenient, while providing many nutrients!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I went grocery shopping and came back with the following:

-organic tomatoes (on sale!)
-yellow squash
-butternut squash
-organic baby carrots
-apples
-frozen broccoli
-bananas
-whole grain chocolate cookies and spelt crackers (both clearanced at WF--otherwise I probably wouldn't have bought them due to cost)

And now, I'm heading to bed. I'm REALLY trying to get to bed earlier. Usually I don't sleep until 1 or 2am, but I'm really trying to change that and my goal is to be in bed by midnight most nights if/when I can.)

What time do you go to sleep?

Good night!