Archive for Health & Fitness

Thinking Out Loud #5

I’m taking part in Amanda from Running With Spoon’s Thinking Out Loud Series…here is episode #5…

1. This week I started a $25 for two-week unlimited sessions at a new gym in Hermosa Beach called Bionic Body. It’s owned by Kim, a former trainer on The Biggest Loser and her husband. My friend Dara is a trainer there. They use a track system with bands, which is kind of similar to TRX (but feels more stable). Holy cow it’s a workout!! I did two, back-to-back one hour sessions on Monday, and a hour session yesterday. It feels really good to feel that “right” kind of sore, if you know what I mean. I think I’ll be really sad when my two weeks ends, because the gym itself is WAAAAY out of my budget. 🙁

My sesh at Bionic Body (I'm in the pink shirt)

My sesh at Bionic Body (I’m in the pink shirt)

2. Since I’ve been done with half marathon training, despite my calf soreness (which limits some of my cardio options), I’m starting to feel in much better shape. Go figure! I’m only taking one rest day instead of two, which I think does help. I must admit, it also feels good not to have any particular goals. Sometimes it feels nice to be free of the “oh-I-have-to-do-this-today” schedule.

3. Speaking of my calf, I’m noticing improvements. It’s still mostly sore at the beginning of the day, right when I wake up, but towards the end of the day I hardly feel it. Still not comfortable enough to start running on the sand again, but I am planning on playing beach volleyball on Saturday, so we’ll see how it holds up. BTW Icy Hot is like my new perfume. 🙂

4. This week I’ve been experimenting with eating less carbs. I haven’t had any Triscuits or other kinds of crackers in the house all week, so it’s taken some getting used to as far as finding new things to snack on (although I did have some crackers at a champagne tasting last night), but I think all in all it’s helped me feel less “puffy.”

5. I’ve kind of given up on the Olympics. Without having a DVR to fast forward past commercials and sports I don’t care about, it’s just too time consuming to watch. It’s like 2 minutes of sports, then 10 minutes of commercials…the same commercials…over and over and over. Anyone else thinking the same thing?

Those are my thoughts. What are you up to this weekend? My big plans are Netflix/Hulu/Redbox, exercise outdoors, and tax preparation. Fun! Fun!

Be sure to stop by the new giveaway I have going on this week for Eco Natural Soap!

Fighting Age and Temptation

plateIt’s mid morning on a Saturday afternoon, and here I am at home typing on the computer, when normally I’d be playing my usual Saturday morning games of beach volleyball. Not so right now with my hurt shin/calf.

I still don’t quite know what is wrong with it. It’s worse in the morning when it feels like nerve pain shooting up and down my leg, but as the day goes on and I move around, it DOES start to feel better, and the pain is narrowed down to pretty much one spot on my shin/calf. One friend suggested it might just be a shin splint, but I’m still not sure. Needless to say, I’m going to try an acupuncture session around noon today.*

I miss running (at least the running I used to do on the beach). I miss how it makes me feel happy from endorphins, and toned. Lately I’ve been feeling like a dough-y sloth, especially in my mid-section, which I’m NOT happy with right now AT ALL.

It’s funny because I’m sure no one has really noticed but me (although I’m not walking around right now sporting a bikini). Behind clothes I probably look the same. In fact one weird fact about me is that I have never really gained (or lost) more than 5 pounds from my baseline of around 125 (I’m 5’4) my entire adult life, no matter what kind of food I’m eating or workouts I’m doing. What DOES change is how toned (or not) I am.

Now, I have adjusted as best I can. I’m not one to sit on the couch and feel sorry for myself, and in truth, this injury is NOT going to make or break how I’m feeling about my body right now. The truth is I need to be making better choices. I have always been consistent with SOME kind of workout (this past week my cardio substitutes were riding my bike and swimming), but food…well that’s a whole other story.

I’ve never been a crappy eater. You won’t see me making confessional videos like on The Biggest Loser where I’m eating whole pizzas, fried chicken, or fast food. In fact if you went through my fridge and cupboard, you would be hard-pressed to find any kind of junk food. I just don’t keep it in the house because it’s too tempting.

My problem (at least I think) is that I eat too much…even of the good stuff. I feel like I snack way too much…and no matter how “heart-healthy” (I’m looking at you avocados), calories are calories, and my 43-year-old body I think is trying to tell me, “girrrrrrrrl, you ain’t 25 anymore!”

Just like those who, as they get older, notice how more than two glasses of wine or beer anymore pretty much ruins their whole next day, the same can be said about food with me. My envious eyes do shed tears when I see 20-somethigns shoveling over-stuffed burritos in their mouths and chugging beer, and still being able to bounce a quarter off their abs, but hey, I need to get the F over it!

And by the way, this has nothing to do with body acceptance or not loving my body. I in fact very much do love and appreciate my body (OK, maybe not EVERY day), but my personality is greatly affected by how I “feel,” and if I don’t “feel” my best, I’m NOT my best.

When it comes down to it, I know that I need to make choices. Hard choices, but good choices nonetheless if I want to feel my best at any given age. What makes this even more challenging is when you are faced with temptation.

Sure I can live like a hermit in my apartment and feel “safe” with the food I have in my house, but that’s a pretty boring life! So I need to find ways to feel stronger in those weaker moments. For instance tonight I’m going to a potluck BBQ**, and Wednesday I’m going to a champagne tasting at Whole Foods with friends, where they put out tons of free food like cheese, bread, delicious spreads, etc. It’s SO hard to say no to these tempting foods, is it not?

And one can make the argument that YOLO, or what’s one night out of indulgence? But for me it really doesn’t take much for my body to “feel” like crap anymore if I indulge too much. And who can really have “just a tiny bite of cheese.” Bitch please! Once I start I’d be eating eating cheese I’m a goner.

Has anyone else noticed what they can/can’t eat or drink as they get older? How do you fight temptation at parties or events? Can you seriously only eat one tiny bite of cheese and walk away? If so, I kind of hate you! 🙂 Just kidding…sort of.

*the acupuncture, followed by an epsom salt bath did seem to help because it’s Sunday morning and my leg doesn’t hurt as much. 

**the BBQ was last night and I had a salad before I left. I arrived at 7 and we didn’t eat until around 9:30. I was starving so I did my damnedest to stay away from cheese and chips. Now I feel like I have a meat hangover since I ate so late. 

Thinking Out Loud #4

Thinking-Out-LoudI’m taking part in Amanda from Running With Spoon’s Thinking Out Loud Series…here is episode #4…

1. I still have an injured left calf from the half marathon. In the meantime I’ve done yoga, rode my bike yesterday (it was 72 degrees and sunny), and did strength training using Nike Training Club, and modifying some moves if they put too much stress on my calf.

2. If I don’t want to deal with Olympic spoilers, I guess I’m going to have to stay off social media completely. Grrrr!

Taking my bike "banana pancakes" out for a spin.

Taking my bike “banana pancakes” out for a spin.

3. Speaking of the Olympics, now that they added the category of a team skating competition, I have way less interest in watching the individual skate programs. Meh, saw it already. And by the way did anyone pull a muscle just WATCHING 15-year-old Russian figure skater Yulia Lipnitskaya? Owwwwww!

4. I attempted to make my own version of banana ice cream with peanut butter this week. It was a big fail as far as consistency (how the hell do you make it ice cream shaped?), but who cares, it tasted delicious even though it was runny. I would have taken a picture but it kind of resembled baby diarrhea (hope no one was eating lunch reading this). 🙂

5. One of this week’s big new stories was how Missouri college football player and potential NFL player Michael Sam announced he was gay, right before the NFL draft. I think most people are in support of him (I hope!), and don’t see it as any kind of “distraction’ in the NFL. It makes me wonder if some day athletes or other high profile people some day don’t even have to make some kind of “official announcement,” because it isn’t a big deal and no one is opposed to it or cares. Meaning let’s say an athlete is white and they started dating a black person. No one would think to make any kind of special announcement about it because it’s no big deal (of course with the outrage over this Cheerios commercial apparently it sadly still is a big deal in some places). 🙁

I just watched The Butler this past weekend and since it took place over many years and especially during the Civil Rights movement, it’s crazy to think how many dumb laws there were against other humans, but also interesting to see how we’ve progressed as people over time, slowly breaking down barriers.

So I hope that one day athletes can just be who they are no matter what their color or sexual orientation without it being made into a media circus. A good athlete is a good athlete!

Jon Stewart summed it up best (my favorite part is at 3:00):

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