…what I eat on a regular, day-to-day basis.

Oh, you guys. You’re making me blush. I actually have a fanbase!

My question is– do you want the truth? (pizza)

Or the ideal? (um, pizza with whole wheat crust?)

I kid.

Here’s the thing– While I do try to eat healthy on a consistent basis, my diet is far from perfect.

I love cheeseburgers. I would die for baked goods. And alcohol has a pretty regular spot on my beverage rotation.

Given my love for food, I try to take the “you can eat anything as long as it’s in moderation” approach.

Sometimes this works. Sometimes it doesn’t.

(Shameful truth– if I make a pizza at home, I can easily take down at least half of it. I try really hard not to do this, but, you know, sometimes I do. And I may or may not be watching Jerseylicious while doing it. Whatever. Go ahead and judge me.)

However, while I’m not one to be giving out nutrition advice (just yesterday I had 2 chocolate cookies after lunch. What? They were getting old. Someone had to eat them. I don’t bake cookies to throw them away. God.), I will be happy to share with you the healthier side of my diet.

My healthy eating tends to occur Monday-Friday between the hours of 8-4.

Eating right is so much easier when you’re on a schedule, am I right?

And, since today is Thursday and therefore falls into that time slot, I’ve eaten pretty well so far today.

So, let the meal tracking commence.

Breakfast today was my typical go-to Breakfast Sundae. (How is it that even for breakfast, I manage to make it sound like I’m eating sweets?)

I’m a sucker for Chobani Greek yogurt, but the flavored kinds are chock-full of sugar. This made me sad, since the peach kind if my fave.

Enter– chocolate protein powder. Yes, still sugary, but I can control how much I put in, and it adds a little extra protein to boot.

Throw in a few frozen blueberries, and voila! You’ve got yourself a very tasty, kind of frozen, sweet but not-too-sweet-for-breakfast Breakfast Sundae.

Nom nom nom

I also try to eat another piece of fruit along with this. Today it was an apple. A Fuji apple from the grocery store to be exact. I don’t usually like to eat fruit from the grocery store, but I haven’t been home to stock up in a while so Shaw’s apples it is.

And while I’m at it, I might as well start tracking my work outs too.

Wow– look at you guys keeping me on track!

So, yesterday was the big day I decided to officially start training for another half. I’ll be running 4 days a week, which leaves me two days a week to strength train, with one day rest.

Thursdays are a strength training day. Today’s workout was:

Warm Up:
Ankle/Knee/Hip/Shoulder Rolls
Random Stretching
Alternating Back Lunges
Side-to-Side Squats
More Random Stretching
(I have an actual warm up routine I should follow, but that doesn’t always happen. Today was one of those days.)

Main Set:
12x (per arm) 8kg Kettlebell Snatches
15x Bosu Ball sit ups
(Repeat 3 times)

Alternating 3 sets Incline Dumbbell Press/Lat Pulldown
Set 1– 10x @ 30 lbs Press
12x @ 80lbs Pulldown

Set 2– 8x @ 35lbs Press
6x @ 100 lbs Pulldown

Set 3– 6x @ 35lbs Press (meh)
5x @ 100 lbs Pulldown

Cardio Boost:
12x 28 kg Kettlebell Swings
15x 15 lb. Medicine Ball Slams
(Alternate 3x’s through)

Alternating 3 sets Chest Fly Machine/Bent-Over Row
Set 1– 10x @ 70lbs Flies
12x @ 65lbs Row

Set 2–
8x @ 80lbs Flies
8x @ 75 lbs Row

Set 3– 6x @ 80lbs Flies
6x @ 75lbs Row

Final Set– Ropes
100 Alternating
25 Rope Slams/25 Alternating
Repeat 25/25
Finish with 100 Alternating

Took me about 45 minutes, kicked my butt, and I feel good.

So, tell me loyal readers. Do you want to read about what I eat and what I do in the gym? Or should I stay away from the fitness/nutrition stuff and leave that to the pros?

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Eat Spuds, Gain Pudge

July 7, 2011

What the hell, Denise Austin!

All this time you’ve been selling me the idea that Idaho potatoes are good for me:

And then I had to find out from Harvard University that all you’ve been selling me are lies.

Lies!

I haven’t done a health post in a while, but I thought this new study was worth mentioning.

Tell me– Do you love your spuds?

That’s a silly question. Of course you love potatoes. What’s not to love?

However, I (along with almost every other human being I know) know that potatoes that have been fried, mashed with butter, or turned into a chip aren’t good for me.

And I do a (pretty) good job of only eating these foods on occasion, as a treat.

Or at least only on the weekends.

At the very least, not every day.

Usually.

Oh who am I kidding. I freaking love potatoes in every form and eat them all the time.

But, french fries and buttery mashed potatoes aside, I have always been under the assumption that a potato, a plain, unaltered potato, was a healthy addition to a well-rounded diet.

I mean, it’s from the earth. Mother Nature created it. Not to mention, the good ‘ol spud is a certified “heart healthy” food by the American Heart Association.

Seems to me like this should be one hell of a super food, eh?

Alas, all tasty, seemingly good-for-you foods usually crash and burn. (That is, depending how much “weight” you want to put into this study.)

According to a new study published by the New England Journal of Medicine has found that an individual who eats an extra serving of potatoes each day will gain more weight than if they consumed an extra 12-ounce sugary drink or extra helping of red or processed meats.

Say it isn’t so!

Here’s the breakdown: In general, the participants in the study gained an average of 0.8 pounds per year. However, those who regularly ate potatoes gained more.

Those who ate an extra serving of french fries every day added an average of 3.4 pounds to their total weight over 4 years.

Potato chips added 1.7 pounds.

And any potato in non-chip form contributed 1.3 pounds.

Now, I know this doesn’t seem like a lot, and to many, it isn’t worth giving up the starchy goodness of this diet staple.

But when you add up the weight gain over 20 years, even the seemingly innocent 0.8 pounds balloon to a whopping 16 extra pounds you have to carry around.

Add the extra weight you’ll gain from your potato-laden diet and you’ll be heaving around much more than you are today.

OK. I got that.

Extra potatoes = more fat on your bones year over year.

Not exactly mind-blowing, if you ask me.

Potatoes are starchy, fairly high in calories for a veggie, and are almost never eaten in their natural state. And you mean to tell me that they are going to make me gain weight?

No offense Harvard, but even I, with my unassuming 4-year degree from a liberal arts college, could have told you that.

So, do we need to give up potatoes in an effort to reach healthy diet nirvana?

No.

I mean, in all honesty, who eats an extra serving of french fries, potato chips, or any form of potato for that matter, every single day?

If I had to hazard a guess, I’d say probably not too many people.

And if you are, chances are your diet isn’t all that healthy anyway, potato-gorging habits aside.

So, in all honesty, I’m not sold on this study. To me, it seems kind of like common sense.

But, hey, maybe after reading this, it will help deter you the next time you’re eyeing the all-you-can-eat baked potato bar at your favorite restaurant.

Maybe just knowing these facts will help you clean up your diet a little, and maybe next time you order a Friday night burger, you’ll order a side salad instead of steak fries.

Maybe.

Or maybe not. Maybe, if you’re like me, you’ll find room in your diet for a little spud-goodness.

But anyway, that’s all I have to say about that.

Check in next time for my firsthand account on the trials and tribulations of wearing pocket-less pants.

Until then 🙂

Bad, Bad Beer

April 6, 2011

Sorry people. Today’s post is a venting session.

I’m angry. At myself.

I got on the scale today for the first time in a Very. Long. Time.

I’ve been avoiding weighing myself for quite awhile, mainly because I knew I wouldn’t like the number that would inevitably be glaring back at me.

But, I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow morning, and since I don’t usually like surprises, I figured I should get a ball park figure of how much I’m weighing in these days, so I didn’t faint in disgust and astonishment tomorrow morning.

Let’s just say, I probably would have fainted tomorrow morning, mainly from disgust.

According to the scale, and despite my best efforts, I’ve apparently gained 10 pounds.

I mean, I’m healthy. I know I am. Those of you who know me, know I am.

I work out 4-6 days/week. When I say I “work out”, I don’t mean jumping on the elliptical and doing 30 minutes at level 10 and then daintily doing bicep curls with 5 lb. dumbbells.

I go balls to the wall. Sprint intervals, kettlebell workouts, plyos…the works. If I’m lifting, the lightest dumbbell I use is 30 lbs.

I’m not saying this for a pat on the back, all I’m saying is that I make my hour or so that I have at the gym count.

My diet? It consists mainly of plain Greek yogurt, fruits, veggies, sweet potatoes, chicken, and the occasional omelet. If I eat pasta, it’s whole wheat. I eat dessert, but in moderation. Fast food disgusts me. I do like to eat out, but it’s not often and I don’t go overboard on a regular basis. I like to cook, rarely use butter, and practice pretty good portion control.

So by all accounts, I should be lean…right?

Enter beer.

Beer is the reason I’ve gained weight. Beer is the reason why I’m not losing weight.

After seeing the number on the scale this morning, right now, beer is my mortal enemy.

I’m not going to go into the health effects of drinking too much alcohol. This post is strictly from a weight perspective.

I don’t drink during the week, but I’m a social drinker on the weekends.

And it doesn’t help that I tend to be very social on Friday and Saturday nights. (I once stayed home by myself on a Saturday night and felt like I was doing something wrong. Although once that feeling passed, I have to say– it was pretty effing great. I got takeout and watched a chick flick, for those of you who are wondering what one does on a Saturday night alone.)

Anyway, being the little social butterfly that I am, I’d say I average 4-5 drinks per night on any given weekend.

That means 8-10 drinks in a two day span…and that’s on a pretty low key night. It can easily jump to 12-15 if there’s a special occasion or if I get particularly rowdy.

Say I’m drinking light beer (which I don’t– I like my Belgians). 110 calories a pop (on average). Times 10. That’s 1,100 extra calories I consume in two days. (Not counting the greasy food and late night snacks I tend to eat.)

Considering the beers I drink probably have anywhere between 150-200 calories…ouch. I don’t even want to do the math.

Now, consider this– to gain 1 pound, you have to consume 3,500 more calories than you are expending.

Sure, that might sound like a lot. But if I’m consuming 1,000-2,000 extra calories a weekend in alcohol alone, it’s no wonder my waistline has a pretty little spare tire wrapped around it.

I used to be in the fitness field. I know all this. But, writing that out makes me realize how disgusting it all is.

So, it’s high time I cut back.

3 drinks a week— MAX.

No exceptions…well, except for weddings.

But that’s it.

All I need for motivation is the number I saw on the scale this morning.

It’s go time people. Wish me luck.

Just when I think I’m finally being healthy…

In lieu of the holiday season, I’ve been trying to clean up my diet a little. I figure if I’m going to be indulging in a little holiday cheer (and by cheer, I mean alcohol and cookies) on the weekends, the least I can do it keep it healthy during the week. Not too hard, right?

Wrong.

I started the morning off on a good note:

Low sugar oatmeal! Fruit!

And this wholesome, hearty breakfast held me over until lunch, where I had a nice can of soup and some salad waiting to be consumed.

But then I ran into trouble.

Big trouble.

All I wanted was the soup bowl I keep in the bottom drawer of my desk. Really, I wasn’t asking for trouble. So imagine my surprise when I open it up and see this:

SH*T!

How, oh how, did I forget that I bought this candy the day after Halloween during a moment of weakness when I went into CVS to buy mascara and it was on sale for, like, 2 for $1?

The fact that it has sat in my bottom drawer, untouched, for a month literally blows my mind.

Unfortunately, that candy is now on my radar.

I heard it calling my name while I glumly ate my stupid soup and droopy salad, which promptly lost it’s luster once I knew there was real, live chocolate within 2 feet of me.

I tried. I really did. But having chocolate that close would wreak havoc on anybody’s willpower.

Which is why it really isn’t my fault that this happened:

Failure

Damn you chocolate. You win again. 😦

…and for many people, that’s a giant pile of greasy, heart attack-inducing fast food.

But, as angry as I get at the people who stuff their faces with this crap every day and then are SHOCKED when they are diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and have a heart attack at age 38, I’m starting to think the restaurants are just as much to blame.

Check out this yummy list of “30 Healthy Foods that Aren’t”.

Hey, Macaroni Grill! Congratulations. You’re the first people to successfully take a healthy piece of fish and bread, fry, and grease it up into a hearty 2,000+ calorie monstrosity.

Oh, and Ruby Tuesday’s, you sneaky little bastards. Don’t think using the word “mini” when describing your Bacon Cheddar Burgers is going to fool me. When you give someone FOUR, it’s almost worse than just handing over a full-sized one.

And Blimpie. Ohhhh, Blimpie. I didn’t even know you still exist. But leave it to you to pack a veggie sandwich with more than half a days worth of calories. You guys are good.

And by good, I mean disgusting.

I’ll be the first to say that people are too quick to blame others when it comes to their weight, and I’ll also be the first to call bullshit on that.

But, it’s easy to see how simple marketing techniques can lead uneducated people down the wrong, waistline-expanding, dangerously unhealthy path.

It’s pretty much general knowledge now that many salads served in restaurants are unhealthy, unless you specifically ask them to remove the fried chicken, croutons, 5 types of cheese, and buckets of salad dressing.

But…fish? Veggie sandwiches? Those things practically scream “I’m healthy!”.

So here I am, saying what I never thought I’d say. Maybe people aren’t 100% to blame for their weight. Maybe they’re only, like, 98% at fault.

The other 2% falls on the false advertising from restaurants.

I know many places are requiring restaurants to post the calorie content of their meals, and I think this is a step (albeit small) in the right direction. Because seeing these numbers is more than enough for me to steer clear.

How much longer until this type of food is just straight-up banned? Although I guess then we get into the issue of whether or not it’s our constitutional right to eat and get fat as we see fit.

Sigh. It’s a never-ending cycle. Stupid fast food.

Fake Fries

April 9, 2010

As you all know, I love ketchup.

I mean, seriously. Anyone who gets this jazzed about a condiment must have some serious issues.

But there’s a problem. Ketchup is usually the perfect companion to a heaping, delicious pile of deep fried, oil-laden french fries.

And sadly, with my new GSP, fries aren’t exactly on the menu.

Well, my friends, you can now start calling me Chef Lindsay. I actually made quite a yummy side of potatoes last night to satisfy my insatiable craving for ketchup.

They were super simple and super yummy.

Step 1: Line tray with foil and drizzle with Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO).
Step 2: Dice red potato into bite-sized pieces.
Step 3: Toss potato in about 1 tbsp EVOO.
Step 4: Sprinkle with garlic powder, maybe some pepper, perhaps some Mrs. Dash, a dash or two of onion powder. (In other words, whatever spices you have on hand and are tasty. I did add a little bit of salt as well.)
Step 5: Broil at 350 (I did 370, only because I was baking chicken too and freak out about raw meat) for 35-40 minutes or until you can stab them with a fork.
Step 6: Squeeze glob of ketchup on plate.
Step 7: Enjoy the yumminess.

I think this whole experimenting in the kitchen thing is kind of fun. Next on the list: Bean Soup. In a crock pot.

Whoa.

I Have a GSP

April 8, 2010

Nope, I don’t mean a GPS.

A GSP.

Get Skinny Plan.

It’s go time, people. Especially with the temps hitting over 80 yesterday, I’m more determined than ever to look HAWT in a bikini this summer.

Well, ok, maybe that won’t happen. But I am trying to drop a little poundage and tone my newly-flabby self up.

This is when I wish I still went to my kettlebell gym. You know, before they started screwing people over and charging them for months of usage that didn’t exist.

Anyway, I digress.

So, what exactly does this plan entail? Let me break it down for you.

1.) Run, run, run. This has been made easier by the fact that the Harpoon 5 Miler is June 5 and I have a goal of running under a 9 minute mile. (Don’t judge me.) In addition, I have a partner in crime whose goal is the same. Excellent.

2.) Kettlebells. You all know my love for all things KBs. Now I just need the motivation to kick my ass on my own. I miss you Stacey and Kevin. 😦

3.) Portion control. Perhaps my biggest downfall. I love me some food. Usually, a little too much.

4.) Lots of fruits and veggies. Happily, this is not a problem for me at all. Maybe it has something to do with growing up on an apple orchard, but I could eat fruits and veggies all day.

5.) Lots less sugar. It doesn’t help that Easter came and went and the Easter Bunny brought me a basket filled with candy. I’m limiting myself to two small pieces a day.

6.) Lots ‘o water. Another downfall. I’ m a camel. Fact.

Now, if you’ll all notice, this plan doesn’t include starving myself, diet pills, or sitting in a sauna in a sweat suit for hours on end.

That’s right folks. I’m doing this the old-fashioned way.

Gasp!

And guess what?

I’ve already lost 3 pounds. Take that, Quick Trim.