Daily Archives: December 15, 2009

Answered – Motivated for a Healthy Life

Hi friends! I’m answering a couple more questions today, so I’m going to get right to it!!

My body clock is starting to finally adjust to my later shifts. I was up at 7:30 am today. Progress! I had to jet to the gym before work, so I ate a light breakfast while drinking coffee.

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Crunchy peanut butter and strawberry jam on a small bagel. There is nothing dreamier than melty PB on toast. I think if I’m ever on death row, that will be my last meal.

I was feeling a hardcore full-body workout today, so I opened up my New Rules of Lifting for Women book and did the first one I found!

Warm-up:
10 minutes on the stair machine (not the “mill” kind, but the death kind)
10 minutes on the rowing machine

A1 – Wide grip deadlift:
3 sets @ 60 lbs x 8

B1 – Bulgarian split squat:
3 sets @ 10 lb plate x 8

B2 – Underhand grip lat pulldown:
3 sets @ 55 lbs x 8

C1 – Reverse lunge w/ forward reach:
3 sets @ 12.5 lb dumbbells x 8

C2 – Dumbbell prone Cuban snatch:
3 sets @ 7.5 dumbbells x 8

D1 – Swiss ball crunch:
3 sets @ 5 kg ball x 15

D2 – Reverse crunch:
3 sets @ bw x 15

D3 – Russian twist:
3 sets @ 5 kg ball x 30

E1 – Plank:
1 set @ 90 sec

Cooldown:
stretching

 

LOVED doing this workout again!! I worked up a wonderful weightlifting sweat, and had fun doing lower-body moves again (I can’t do them often because of my old-lady hip). However, I switched the lateral flexion with the Russian twists and the prone cobra for the plank solely because I like them better :)

Came home and had a little protein juice before popping in the shower.

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PVL peach whey cooler. This wasn’t a whole serving, just wanted to finish of the giant canister I had.

After I was sufficiently clean, I heated up the last of the frozen moo-beef chili remains.

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I, ahem, “beefed” it up a little more with some mixed frozen veggies. This left me SO full! I was barely hungry for my snack when I took my break at work 4 hours later.

Like most things though, the fullness didn’t last. I hit up the grocery store after work for what was supposed to be a quick trip. But it’s snowing (again) and the roads are horrible. Then I ran into a fellow reporter/j-schooler and we gabbed about my career change for a while. Before I knew it I was on my way to the checkout at 6:15 pm and I was starving!!! So I detoured to the prepared food aisle and picked up some sushi which I consumed immediately upon arriving home.

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Nothin’ special, just a variety pack. I think it was spicy tuna, california and tofu.

With a side of veggies + hummus.

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For such a low-key dinner, it was amazingly satisfying!!

Oh, and dessert was a little treat that fell off the shelf and into my grocery cart.

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I used to be obsessed with the chocolate covered sunflower seeds my mom used to buy at Costco.

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These definitely did not disappoint!!!  Can you tell I’m a sucker for candy coating? :P

That’s actually a perfect photo to lead into my Q&A’s for the day.

chasingthenow Said:

Here’s a question for you: What is your biggest motivation for living a healthy lifestyle? Like, what keeps you from just eating whatever you want and drinking whatever you want and not caring?

Tamzin Said:

I have a question, How do you control your cravings ?

These are kinda similar, so I though I’d answer them together.

First, to answer Maria’s question, my biggest motivator to live a healthy lifestyle is knowing I’ve already done a lifetime’s worth of damage. Most of you know I was a big boozer, smoker, took drugs, ate horribly, and generally just hated myself. I feel really, really bad about doing that for so many years. I see now as my chance to turn things around and make up for all that lost time.

My decision to change my lifestyle did not happen overnight. It was a slow progression that just snowballed over a number of years. To sum it up, I do what I do because I don’t want to hate myself anymore. I don’t want to look in the mirror in disgust, feel embarrassed by the way I act, loathe my body, or think it’s okay to treat myself with disrespect. I did that for many years, and it’s no way to live.

Everything I do – eating lots of veggies, skipping on the beer, weight lifting, to even smiling at the customers at work. Those are all things I do that make me feel good. And those good feelings are kinda addictive! Now that I know how it feels to accept the way I am, I don’t want to do anything that will make me go back to my old self-destructive ways.

I think this links to how I control cravings too. First, I should say that I don’t ever really experience strong cravings. I constantly eat foods I love so I never feel as if I’m missing out on something.

Sometimes this means “healthifying” foods, like I did with yesterday’s Subway sandwich. Sometimes, it means having a little bit of the food I want in moderation. Today for example, I was given a free polar bear cookie. I really wanted the damn cookie (cookies are admittedly my worst weakness). But I also know they’re over 400 calories a pop. Knowing the cookie probably wasn’t worth that, I broke off the nose, savoured every nibble, then threw the rest in the trash before I had time to go back. It was good, but not 400 calories good ;)

Sometimes though, you just gotta go all out. There are 365 days in a year. I see no problem with taking a handful of those days and eating everything you crave. For me, it’s always special occasions, like Christmas will be this year!

So with a combination of healthy versions, moderation, and splurging, I really don’t experience intense cravings for any food. I’m an awful “muncher” though. Walking into the kitchen can turn into a munch-fest for me. It’s something I’m always working on. Some days are better than others. But hey, we all can’t be perfect! :)

 

And with that I ask you: what’s your biggest motivation for living a healthy lifestyle? Do you have any tricks for controlling cravings?

Healthified with a Few Answers

Hiya! Hope everyone got a good start to their weeks :) Today I realized I’m doing a “real” work week. Work till Friday then have a WHOLE weekend off!! Sweet damn!

Did the ole 2-10pm closing shift at Starbucks tonight, so I had the morning to myself. Would have been wonderful if I didn’t wake up at 6:30 am with a charley horse (ie severe cramp) in my calf. So. Painful. Needed some comfy oats to make me feel better.

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Custard oats!! I followed Tay’s method of whisking a whole egg into the pot as my oats cooked. It turned out amazing! I love my oats really thick and creamy, and that’s exactly what happened. Topped with some dates and homemade maple pecan butter. Epic.

Then it was off to my favourite Monday morning step class. It’s the same ladies there every week and we’re starting to bond. I just love it :) It’s one of the few times I get to just let loose and get a silly sweat on.

Replenished after with a Janetha inspired lunch.

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  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup garbanzo beans
  • 1 tsp ranch seasonin
  • 1 orange bell pepper
  • chopped onion
  • 1 tomato
  • kale

All mixed up and eaten out of a giant bowl. This was really filling!! Except, I used up all my fresh produce in it, which meant no giant pita to bring to work for supper tonight. Instead, I opted for the Subway in the food court.

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It’s a 6 inch veggie delight on whole wheat with every veggie available. Then I brought my own pouch of tuna and added it to the sub, with a drizzle of Italian dressing I got on the side. Tuna subs used to be my favourite thing ever, and they’re one of the worst subs you can get (helloooo goopy mayo!). So this is a healthified version of my old favourite. It was awesome!

I’m actually not allowed to take pictures at Starbucks – it’s a corporate policy. But I managed to sneak one of my drink tonight.

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Tall unsweetened iced black tea lemonade. I can’t find the nutrition facts for the unsweetened version of this drink. The lemonade is about 1/3 of it and has some sugar, so it does have calories. How many, I don’t know! Not that much I’m assuming, maybe 60 cals?

P.S. I discovered the coffee frappuccino bases have high fructose corn syrup today for anyone out there who watches that stuff.

I also broke my “no buying any more mugs or tumblers with my sweet partner discount” rule. It was just too good to pass up!

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An insulated cup just for cold drinks. Just think of all the Deb inspired smoothies I could fill it up with!

 

Okay folks, time for the first round of questions and answers.

I got some excellent questions from y’all! I’m going to answer a little each day this week, as some deserve well thought-out answers. Since I’m short on time tonight, I’m going to tackle the easiest ones first ;) Don’t worry if yours isn’t featured here – I will be answering all of them in the days ahead!

 

Emily (The Experimentarian), said:

ooh! Question time! let’s talk about travel! Where is the coolest place you’ve ever been? Where would you like to go?

What is your favorite hobby besides blogging and working out? Is it crafting? Ha ha. Yay for arts and crafts! xoxo

Okay first, I’d have to say fitness is my number one hobby!! Chris is a huge car hobbyist, and one day I was complaining to him that I don’t have any hobbies. He was just like “Umm, Susan, you spend all your spare time at the gym or thinking about it.” Which is totally true. When I’m not working out, I’m reading about it, planning for it, talking about it. It kinda consumes me :\ 

But I do really enjoy playing my guitar when I feel inspired. I’ve also been known to knit on occasion, which I took up five years ago to help me quit smoking. And I know this is a lame hobby, but I still love the news! Watching it, reading it. I love keeping on top of current events.

As for travel, I wouldn’t say I’m a globe trotter, but I’ve been to some pretty neat places. The list: America (duh), Mexico, Cuba (twice), Jamaica, Germany, Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg and France. Of all those places, I think the trip to Mexico with my mom to visit my sister (who was studying there at the time) was the most memorable. We stayed with a Mexican family in a city called Cuernevaca. We did a lot of travelling to the surrounding cities and got to see some of the real Mexican countryside. The food was also fantastic ;)

Right now there are a lot of places in the United States I really want to go to – Las Vegas, Washington DC, Chicago, Los Angeles, Austin, to name a few ;) Overseas, I reeeeeally want to go to the UK. Ellie, I’m coming someday, I promise!!

 

julie,said:

i wanna knowww what’s your fav starbreezies drink!? now that you work there and all :)

I think my favourite coffee drink of all time (besides plain coffee) is a dry latte with two shots of espresso and a squirt of vanilla. I love my lattes foamy, but I prefer only a hint of sweetness and not the overpowering one that most Starbucks drinks have.

But, my favourite Starbucks-only drink is an iced caramel macchiato. There are many others I once had love affairs with, but unfortunately have been discontinued :(

Lori (Finding Radiance), Said:

My question would be: How do you plan on building your personal training business? Will you start at your current gym with advertising (guess not if you are moving?).

This is a good question, seeing as I never really went into how I plan on using my personal training certification. My goal now, is to get a job at my current gym chain. They’re the largest in Canada and are constantly hiring full and part-time trainers all over the place. Their trainers don’t have to seek out clients, but the clients are paired with trainers through the gym. So the “business” side of it would be taken care of.

That’s my short-term goal anyways. There are some privately owned and smaller gyms in the area that I’ll be looking into as well. There are also a couple companies around here that set trainers up with businesses who want them for their employees.

Long-term, I plan on getting my my Nutrition & Wellness certification so I can do a little fitness-based nutrition counselling as well. And of course, I want to do some freelance writing! Put all this knowledge out there to share :)

I’m still iffy about being a group fitness instructor. But ya never know, it could lead there. At the moment though, I’m more focused on working with individual clients.

 

Ashley Said:

So….I looked into buying a waffle iron the other day, because I love the look of yours (they are photogenic!) but the only one I could find was like $80. Which is a lot. I can buy a $20 one online and I was wondering whether its hard to go wrong with a waffle iron? Do you think I can get away with a cheapie? (I realise this probably isn’t what you meant when you invited questions….!!!)

I thought this deserved to be answered in a post because I get a lot of comments from people saying they want a belgian waffle iron. There are some nice ones out there that do all the fancy flipping stuff, but mine is just a “press.”

It’s a Proctor Silex Morning Baker Waffle Iron. I bought it at Walmart for close to $30. I have absolutely no complaints about it. It cooks up fast and makes giant fluffy waffles! I’d just be wary of the non-belgian style irons. I had one before that did two small rectangular waffles at once and it took forever to cook.

 

Well that wraps it up for today! I’ll be delving into some more of the “deep thought” Q’s tomorrow. If you have a question you’d like to add, leave a comment or send me an e-mail at thegreatbalancingact@gmail.com :)

 

Question of the Day: Any old foods you used to love but now “healthify?” I used to be a french fry person, but now I make all sorts of fry substitutes. Like butternut squash fries, yuca fries and most recently green bean fries!

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