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Things I Learned This Month – February 2010

  • It’s hard to blog after Canada kicks butt winning a record 14 gold medals aaaand beating out the US in the gold medal hockey game :D
  • Topping custard oats with a soft-fried egg, salsa and cheese is absolutely amazing.

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  • Sometimes I like resting my body on Sundays, mostly so I can torture it better throughout the week ;)
  • Showering at the gym almost every morning means I don’t have to scrub my bathtub as often.
  • Elvis might have been on to something. Bacon Peanut Butter is delicious on top of banana.

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  • As Danielle eloquently put it, “Consider fatty feb to be fatty forever.”
  • Protein powder is amazing when mixed with just a little water, whether eaten straight up as protein cookie dough or used as a spread on a peanut butter protein sandwich.

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  • Sometimes small steps forward turn into giant leaps. Moving from my cozy province to a giant city 14 hours away doesn’t scare me in the slightest. Finally, I’m EXCITED!!
  • Being who I truly am attracts the right kind of people into my life.
  • Even though Western Creamery is owned by my favourite yogurt brand, it just doesn’t live up to Liberte.

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  • Homemade granola is better than store-bought. Seriously.
  • Peanut butter puffins do not live up to the hype, but I will still munch the box away.

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  • There is nothing more healing than a wild weekend with my best girl friend.
  • I am perfectly content being on my own, but I miss living with other people.
  • I need to take more supplemental vitamins.

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  • But I also need to check the ingredient list of said vitamins before deciding to ingest them everyday.

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  • The expectations I place on myself are ridiculously high and unwarranted. Often the pressure I feel to succeed comes from within, and not from outside sources like I trick myself into thinking.
  • There is something wrong with me when, at the age of 24, I refer to university students as “kids.”
  • Treat Monday is possibly the greatest invention ever.

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  • But there is a reason why I’ve never tried blondies before. It’s hard to stop at just one!! (or, erm, two)
  • President’s Choice The Decadent semi-sweet chocolate chunks are superior to all forms of chocolate chip.

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  • Being well groomed is expensive. Hair straighteners, nail polish, fancy eye liner and hair goos, it all comes at a high cost.
  • I needn’t be scared to cook with high-fat foods like olive oil, butter, nuts, full-fat cheese and even egg yolks. My body craves them!
  • Sweet potatoes need to by slow-roasted. Go. Do it now.

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  • Actually, everything tastes better slow-roasted.

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  • And sometimes the only spices you need are salt and pepper. Why mask the flavour when you can enhance it?
  • Weight lifting makes me feel amazing. Cardio may burn the calories, but weight training has me waking up every morning feeling good about myself (and mega sore)
  • I need to be an active participant in my own life. It’s pointless to just let things happen when I can make every day in the meantime one worth remembering.

Question of the Day: What did you learn this month?

Body Love

Woo!! T-G-I-F!! This is an especially exciting weekend because my mommy is coming to visit! She arrives Friday evening and staying until we get sick of each other :)

I pre-wrote some of this post, so I’m going to keep the food rambles to a minimum. I just got back from an evening out with the gals from work and it’s waaaay past my bedtime!

Started the day off with my new favourite cardio sesh at the gym. 35 minutes of intervals on the elliptical – 1 minute sprints followed by 2 minutes recovery at varying levels. Then 10 minutes on the rowing machine and 10 minutes on the stepmill. I don’t know why but my heart rate was mega high today!! I maxed out at 179 (91%) which I typically only do in races or really fast training runs – not on the elliptical!

Refuelled at the office with smoked salmon, laughing cow, mustard, capers, onions, sprouts, lettuce on an english muffin.

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And an orange :)

Lunch was a beast of a salad.

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Tossed in some canola oil + red wine vinegar and topped with leftover Spinach, Ham and Ricotta Pie. The pie tasted awesome cold on top of the salad! Definitely deserves a remake for tomorrow.

Supper involved more ham because I have a huge chunk of it in my fridge I need to get through! For some reason my mind has been drifting to ham and cheese oatmeal so I made it for dinner.

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  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 whole egg, whisked in while cooking
  • pinch salt and pepper
  • 55g ham, cubed
  • 15g old cheddar cheese

Look at those creamy custard oats!!!

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Ohmygaaaahhhhthiswasgood. So, so good. I want it for supper again tomorrow too ;)

 

Now on to more serious matters…

I’ve noticed there are two kinds of food bloggers – those who are losing weight/maintaining a weight loss, and those who are in recovery from an eating disorder.

This has always fascinated me, that two people with seemingly opposite goals can be drawn to the other. While I’m in the former group – a weight loss gal – I know that I have a lot of readers who deal with disordered eating. Conversely, I read a lot of blogs written by those who are in ED recovery.

The obvious similarity is that our problems are problems with food. We eat too much, not enough, obsess over it, control it, and think about it all the time. But it has always gone beyond that for me. The things those struggling with ED write about often hit very close to home with me. While I have dealt with a few food issues, I have never dove deep into disordered eating. Any of my old struggles with food stemmed from a lack of knowledge, nothing deeper than that.

So why do I always read these blogs nodding my head in agreement? I know what it’s like to hate my body. I know what it’s like to find comfort in treating it badly.

I think this is something a lot of people can relate to, not just those who’ve suffered from an eating disorder.

In my REAL story, I say “I went to a deep and dark place, and for a brief moment, myself and my family had genuine concern I wasn’t going to come out.”

At this time in my life, I was suffering from serious anxiety and depression. I found comfort in my depression. I would wake up every morning, and instead of dragging myself through another day, I would cozy up to the awful feelings inside and stay in bed. I would often pull the covers over my head, wishing it was a hole I could just crawl into and lavish in my depressive thoughts forever. There were many mornings where I would collapse on the kitchen floor, crying hysterically to my mother who just wanted me to get up and go to school. I liked where I was in my miserable depressive state, and I stubbornly did not want to venture out.

I also found comfort in treating my body badly. I liked being reckless with it. I found an odd comfort in puffing back cigarettes, knowing they were slowly killing me. Yes, I ingested drugs, again liking how I felt when I was weak and helpless to their effects. I didn’t like myself, so why would I want to take the time to treat my body well? If anything, I wanted to punish my body.

This has been weighing heavily on my mind as I’ve been reading from a lot of bloggers recently about how they found comfort in their eating disorders. It just sounds so much like how I felt about my depression and body during my own darkest days.

So how did I get out of it? It was quite simple actually. My parents brought me to a psychologist who sat me down and told me straight up that I was responsible for my own depression and I was the only person who could get myself out of it. I don’t know what happened, but a light bulb went off in that moment. I realized I didn’t have to find comfort in my depression anymore, but I had the power and ability to crawl out of the hole I dug for myself. Only me. Just one decision.

The body-love took a lot longer to get the hang of. I don’t think that really clicked for me until I decided to lose the extra weight for good. I think part of the reason I was overweight for so long is because I didn’t love my body. During my weight loss process though, I woke up every day with a new confidence in my own skin. It wasn’t because I was getting skinnier, but I was getting skinnier because I respected my body enough to not treat it badly anymore.

So that is my story. My two take-home points are – only you can change your thoughts and state of well being, and your number-one relationship needs to be the one you have with yourself. Love your body, mind and spirit.

 

Question of the Day: What’s one thing you love about your body? One thing you love about your personality? I love my long, lean legs. I’m pushing 5’7” and most of that height is in my legs! I also love my simple personality. I’m a to-the-point kind of person. No drama, no extra fluff. Just plain and simple :)

A Takeout Tuesday

Wow, thank you so much for the feedback on my post about the "Christmas Issue." To be honest, I was most worried about what my family would have to say about the reason why I don’t like Christmas. Moments after hitting "publish," my mother called and told me my feelings were 100% validated. It has indeed been a rough road, but we both agreed that we are better people now because of it. We were living in La-La Land before. Sounds nice, but really, it’s no way to live your life.

Also after blogging yesterday, I went to BodyFlow, the yoga class at my gym. It was aaawwesome. My favourite instructor was there, which I find is even more important with yoga. This particular release is being described as very “athletic” and I would have to agree. I worked up a good little sweat! Lots of lunges to downward dogs and back. Which is actually a really awkward movement for me because of my freakishly long legs.

Moving on to this morning’s gym visit! I was up hours before the crack of dawn for some weight lifting and HIIT.

Warm-up:
15 minutes on the elliptical (center-driven), increasing resistance every 2 minutes

A1 – One-arm dumbbell snatch:
3 sets @ 20 lbs x 8

B1 – Step-up:
3 sets @ 40 lbs x 8

B2 – Bent-over dumbbell row:
3 sets @ 40 lbs x 8

C1 – Single-leg squat:
3 sets @ 10 lbs x 8 (someday I’ll get to a pistol squat!)

C2 – Wide-grip lat pulldown:
3 sets @ 50 lbs x 8

D1 – Plank:
1 set @ 2 minutes

HIIT:
15 minutes on elliptical, 1 minute sprints, 2 minutes recovery

*All weights are total amounts used

Typing this out, I again realize how much strength I’ve lost since finishing the New Rules of Lifting for Women program last spring. I’m down 20 lbs on the step-ups. I can even tell my arms have lost muscle. Albeit, they’ll always be small and spindly, that’s just how I’m made, but I want to get some of it back! Perhaps I’ll have to figure out some winter weight lifting goals :)

Oddly, I was again craving savoury oats after this workout. Same exact thing happened after my last weight lifting session last week.

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  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 breakfast sausage (chopped and stirred into oats)
  • pinch salt
  • 1 soft fried egg
  • salsa

I did something really rare for lunch today. Nothing in my fridge or cupboards sounded appealing to prepare for work, so I decided to buy my lunch. Shocking, I know.

Except, I kinda cheated. I went to the grocery store.

Freezer aisle:

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Pre-weight loss days, it was quite common for me to have two Amy’s pocket sandwiches for lunch.

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It wasn’t as good as I remember. To be honest, I’m not the biggest fan of Amy’s products in general.

These days, I’m going for a more “balanced” approach, so I just grabbed one pocket and hit up the prepared foods aisle.

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“Asian” salad. Don’t know what’s so “Asian” about it :P But I topped it with “Japanese” dressing, which was soy-sauce-y. It had mixed greens, carrots, mandarin, sliced almonds, chicken and mozzarella. 

My hunger has been off the charts today, and I aaalmost stopped by Pita Pit on my way home. Until I realized my freezer (as always) is stocked to the brim with pita bread. So I made one at home instead.

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  • 1 can sardines in a tomato basil sauce
  • 1 laughing cow cheese wedge
  • red onion
  • mushrooms
  • tomatoes
  • bell pepper
  • romaine

With a honeycrisp doused in cinnamon.

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Take that Pita Pit.

Too bad I ate this at 4:45 pm. I might need another meal before bed! :P

I was toying with the idea of going to yoga again tonight, but I’ve been feeling really dizzy ever since my workout this morning. At first, I thought it was dehydration, but I’ve have tons of water and the room is still spinning. I’m not sure if my elevated hunger today has anything to do with it either. I kinda feel like my body is trying to tell me something, I just don’t know what! So I’m going to curl up and take it easy tonight. Last thing I need is the dreaded flu, which often starts as dizziness for me.

 

Question of the day: Where’s your favourite spot for takeout food? Pita Pit or the grocery store for me! (yes, I count the grocery store :P )

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