…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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Checking In

September 14, 2011

Sorry I fell off the face of the Earth for a little bit there.

I was on a pretty solid blogging streak there for a while, but my life has been pretty boring recently so I figured I wouldn’t bore you guys with stupid posts about unicorns again.

Your welcome.

Anyway, I’m back. With a sassy new haircut and a new training endeavor I’m going to undertake that you all will have the privilege of following.

First, the hair cut.

There’s something about the fall that always makes me want to chop off all my hair. And I’ve found it tends to happen in 2 year cycles.

I decide I want a new hair style, get my hair cut really short, love it for a week, start to hate it after two weeks, and then don’t get my hair cut for a year in protest.

I then keep it long for another year, swearing I’ll never cut it short again.

Then the itch to cut it starts, and I decide I must cut off all my hair right now OMG I can’t wait one more second to have short hair.

So, I make an appointment, usually for that day because, you know, I’m really patient, and by dinner time, my hair is gone and I’m left feeling much better, but slightly ashamed.

Kind of like a one night stand. Heh.

Side note– the past two times I’ve decided to cut my hair short, the change in length was so drastic two different stylists have asked me if it was because I was going through a break up.

I guess they’ve seen too many girls cut all their hair off in the midst of personal anguish and heartbreak?

Alas, that wasn’t the case for me. Moe was aware of the choppage I was about to do.

Anyway, with my short hair also comes a renewed sense to get back in shape.

OK, I never really fell out of shape.

But I want to get back to where I was when I was training for my half marathon.

I haven’t been totally slacking, I just haven’t been pushing myself as hard as I can.

And this, my friends, has resulted in some unwanted pudge around my waist:

There is a lot going on in this picture.

Recap: Cute hair. Unwanted pudge. Random knives on the wall. Very tasty Post Road Pumpkin Ale. (Try it. Seriously.)

So, it’s time for another half marathon. I’ve found one I’m going to do, I have my training schedule ready to go, and I tested my running legs on the treadmill today to make sure they still worked.

I ran 3 miles straight today. With a rock solid time of 29:05. Not very good.

So, first goal: Get my 5k back to where I’m running under a minute mile.

Here we go!

**Update. I just noticed a small, yet significant typo.

As much as I’d like to say I can run a mile in under a minute, making me the world’s fastest runner ever, I’m not quite there yet. Under a 9 minute mile is a leeeeee-tle more achievable. So, mmmmm, I’m going to go with that.

For the better part of my life after college, my goal has been to be an “effortless runner”.

You know, like one of those people who can just run. Someone who makes it look easy. And fun.

Sadly, I am not one of those people.

Sure, I’ve run a half marathon before (with a time of 2:15, which averages out to about a 10:30 pace. Not bad. But certainly not “effortless runner” status.)

And aside from that, I’ve got several 5 milers and 10ks under my belt.

My fastest pace in a race has been a 9:02 mile. It was a 10k. And boy was I proud. (Side note: this is not where I am now. It makes me sad.)

Anyway, the bottom line is– I can run. I’m just not good at it.

Recently, I haven’t really been focusing too much on my running, and have been concentrating more on strength, flexibility, and functional exercises.

But the past few weeks, I’ve been getting the itch to run another long race. For a while I couldn’t figure out why, but yesterday, in the middle of a set of 28kg kettlebell swings, it hit me.

While my workouts have certainly been kicking my butt, there’s been something lacking.

I just haven’t been feeling…accomplished.

I don’t want to work out just to work out. I need a goal. Something to work towards.

And since I accomplished my push up goal (3 sets of 12 full ones! Go me! Go me!), I think it might be time to embark on another running goal.

Perhaps a…marathon.

Or, maybe another half first. (Baby steps, here, people. Baby steps.)

But, I have also decided that if I’m going to do this, I’m going to this right. I don’t want to run a long race just to run it.

I want to run it, and feel good.

I want to feel accomplished.

So, step one is to work on how I run. After years of running in my Saucony’s, my gait, posture, and overall technique leaves much to be desired.

I basically look like I’m always running headlong into a gust of 30 mph wind.

Which is why I’ll be purchasing this book:

Without boring you too much with science, it teaches you to run from your core, not from your legs. Translation: Less injury. Stronger body.

If you want to read more, go to the Chi Running website. And if you want the book, you can get it on Amazon.

For a little more inspiration, I will also be getting Born to Run:

And along with the books, I’m making the jump to Vibram Five Fingers.

Yes. These things:

Don’t knock ’em til you try ’em. (Actually, I haven’t tried them yet. But, I know they are what I need.)

So, expect a few posts here and there as I slowly wade into the barefoot running craze. My research suggests it’s a very slow process, so a long race might be kind of far off.

But for the first time in a long time, I’m actually excited about the gym again.

And in the words of Martha Stewart, that is a very good thing.

Why is it that most of my work stories revolve around the kitchen, and what I do there?

Back story: I decided to start Weight Watchers about two weeks ago. For me, it was less about losing weight and more about being a little more aware of what I’m actually putting in my mouth. I had gotten to the point where dessert was no longer a treat, and more of an everyday staple.

And if I have any intention of putting on a bathing suit this summer, I’d rather not get horrified glances from other beach-goers. So alas, Weight Watchers and point counting it is.

I get 29 points a day. I’m quickly learning how to divvy up those points in a way that won’t leave me starving/gnawing on my hand for sustenance by the time I go to bed.

And, that includes my new and improved 7 point Egg/American Cheese/English Muffin sandwich.

We all know my adoration for all things English muffins. Adding an egg and cheese just heightens my adoration by, ohhhh, 500%.

However, while the sandwich is delicious, it involves me cooking an egg in the microwave at work.

And this, apparently, is quite a spectacle for anyone who happens to be in the kitchen at the same time.

(That, or they’re just really bored at 9 am and have nothing better to do than grill me on how, exactly, to cook an egg in the microwave.)

This morning, there were no less than 5 people crowded around the microwave, watching my poor egg spin and fry under the rays of said microwave.

I’m telling you, you would have thought I was inventing a cure for AIDS. They actually “ooh-ed” and “aah-ed” when it came out.

They then watched me assemble my breakfast, hovering a little too close over my shoulder as I sprinkled on a little pepper.

When my mind-blowing creation was complete, I held a question and answer session by the fridge in order to answer any lingering questions, such as “How long does it take to fry an egg in the microwave??”

“Oh, I don’t know. 30 seconds? I just kind of guess and then add more time if I need to.”

“How many eggs can you cook at a time?”

“I only eat one. But I’d hazard to guess you can cook several, with the same results.”

“Tell me Lindsay, does it taste the same as it does at home?”

“Well, I don’t know how your microwave at home works, but to me, it tastes the same.”

“Can you show me how to do it?”

“Crack an egg in the a bowl, put it in the microwave, set it for 30 seconds, and hit ‘Start’.”

“Wow. That really is just so cool.”

(As they all trickle out of the kitchen, muttering about the egg and cheese sandwiches that will no doubt fill their mornings with glory now that they know how to fry an egg in the microwave.)

That, combined with toasting an English muffin, left me feeling kind of stressed out.

However, according to my last night’s weigh-in, I have lost 1.4 pounds. If my current weight loss keeps up, I’ll be at my target weight…by the end of swimsuit season.

Excellent.

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.

Are You a Muscle Cultivator?

February 14, 2011

“If you walk into a gym, sit on a bench and bang out 3 sets of chest presses followed by 3 sets of incline presses topped off with a few sets of flies trust me you’re not weight lifting – you’re body building. And listen carefully, if you walk out of the gym thinking you’ve just gotten a workout because your hairline is slightly damp with perspiration you’re most certainly in denial, and this is the part that I need you to pay attention to…

YOU…ARE NOT…FIT.

By far my favorite line in this article by Art of Strength.

And now tell me– how many of you do that exact workout?

And for those of you who raised your hand, can you tell me why?

Do you even know?

Is it so you can get big huge muscles and walk around under the false pretense that, since you have big huge muscles, you must be in the best physical shape of your life?

Then you, my friends, are sadly mistaken.

Don’t feel bad though– it’s not your fault. You’ve been fed this “bigger is better” bullshit for years, and unless you’ve worked with a trainer who really knows their stuff, you’re probably just learning that this isn’t the case at all.

For all of you who are horribly confused about what the difference between body-building and true physical fitness (and, judging by the workouts I see so many of you doing, I suspect that’s a lot of you), you need to read this article.

A few of my favorite highlights include:

1.) Unless you have a daily need to continuously press 225 pounds up and down while lying on your back (and, right now, absolutely no reason is coming to mind), there is no need for isolated chest presses. Bench, incline, flies– no reason. For those of you who want to argue with me, give me one good reason, besides getting a grossly inflated chest (and ego).

2.) Modern body-building (aka doing the above mentioned exercise) is yet another form of laziness.

Yes, I said it– laziness. In true American form, people have found a way to get bigger, faster,with as minimal effort as possible. Because, again, in true American form, we’re equate bigger to better. Big muscles must mean you’re in better shape…right?

Wrong. Read:

“Do most people have the determination to achieve the goal of becoming a “strong man”? Not if there’s an easier way to do it. Modern body building was borne of a desire to be bigger faster, all at the expense of physical fitness. Granted, the loss of physical fitness was not intentional rather it was accidental and most certainly unbeknownst for many years. Weight lifting, or the “strong man” routines where developed in such a way that the entire body was enlisted to perform the task. Nothing was being isolated, nothing was being left out, the exercises required not only great physical strength but a tremendous amount of cardio vascular strength. It is this cardio vascular strength that was the greatest loss in the transition from weight lifting to body building.

3.) A 165 pound high school senior recently beat his school’s deadlift record by 100 pounds, deadlifting 365 pounds.

It was the first time he had ever attempted it.

He had never spent hours in the gym doing isolated deadlifts, working up to 365 pounds for the sole ability to deadlift 365 pounds. This senior worked exclusively with kettlebells (surprise!). His workouts consisted of non-isolated, total-body movements, strength and cardio combined workouts.

So he’s physically fit in the true sense of the word…and he can still kick you modern-day strictly-isolated-movement body builder’s asses any day.

I won’t go on with anymore highlights, since what I really want you to do is read the article.

Bottom line, having a ton of muscle will do nothing for you, if you can’t even perform the most basic everyday tasks.

All in all, this is about quality versus quantity.

Authentic versus superficial.

Meat Heads versus True. Strong. Men. (and Women :))

Compliment of the Day

April 26, 2010

Sometimes I get so caught up in the humdrum routine of working a 9-5 that I forget about why I even went back to school for journalism.

But then I realize it isn’t that I don’t enjoy writing. I’ve come to realize I don’t particularly enjoy working.

Case in point: I was just complaining to my mom the other day on the phone about how I’d be completely happy not having to work.

And she reminded me that I’ve never been one to stay content in any one job for very long.

It’s true. I get bored very easily. Too easily, actually.

That’s not to say I want to be a complete slob that lays around and does nothing all day. But it sure would be nice to not have a schedule that required me to be in a cube for 40 hours a week, and to be able to go to bed on Sunday night not dreading the inevitable 6:15 blare of my stupid alarm clock.

But alas, ’tis my life. And until I get motivated to write my book that will no doubt become a national bestseller, allowing me to live off the royalties for the rest of my life, it doesn’t look like that’s about to change any time soon.

So, in the meantime, I look at the little things that remind me that I really do like my job. Like today, when I got an email from my boss’s boss complimenting me on my “wonderful appreciation for the craft of writing and discovery of voice.”

Who…me?

I’ve never really looked at my writing as a “voice” waiting to be discovered. Quite the opposite, actually. Usually the only voice in my head is the one adamantly resisting waking up every morning to go to work, followed immediately by the one thinking about climbing right back into bed at night. (Fun fact of the day: Going to bed is my favorite time of the day during the week. No lie.)

And there’s a third voice mixed in that counts down the days until the weekend. Oh, and the fourth one that really hates all the gross people who ride the T every day with me.

Wow. OK, I ‘m not that cynical in person. I swear.

But as you can see, not one of my “voices” are directly related to my “craft” of writing.

I suppose I could start having a better attitude about the complete boring-ness of having a 9-5 job. But, that likely won’t happen.

So in the meantime, I’ll use that little email pick-me-up to get me through my Monday, and dream about the day that I am longer part of the rat race.