Ups and Downs

Before I even begin to delve into this post, I just want to say how awesome it is that you guys didn’t yell at me for liking soggy cereal! I thought for sure everyone would be on the crunchy bandwagon. Glad to see I’m not alone :) I do however have an aversion to cow’s milk and cream, so I can only do soy or almond milk in cereal. I love dairy, but straight up milk makes me think of the purpose of an animal’s milk in the first place, and gives me the heebie-jeebies. Did you know humans are the only mammal that drink another mammal’s milk? Ew. We’re gross.

Another fun fact: apparently my body only wants six hours sleep a night now. Ugh. Really? Only two years ago I could seriously sleep for 10 hours every single night. Oddly, I feel energetic and awake, I just hope it doesn’t catch up with me!

Maybe my body just gets too excited for breakfast. It’s my own fault for feeding it so well :P


PB&J oats!!!

  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla whey powder
  • dash pumpkin spice
  • peanut butter
  • blueberry jam


I layered half the PB&J in the center of the bowl, so it’s like an “oatmeal sandwich.” :) Usually I crank the stove up in the morning so my oats cook as quickly as possible (I’m hangry!). But today I let them cook slowly on a lower heat and they turned out soooo creamy. Almost like gelatin.

Today was my day off, and a very laid-back one at that. Did lots of housework, and made a big dent in New Moon (getting ready for the movie!). I then mustered up all my courage and went to a zumba class.

If you’re curious about zumba, you should check out this video from the Today Show.

I have to preface this by saying I am uncoordinated, clumsy, and possibly the whitest girl you will ever meet. The only booty shaking I do is shivering during the winter months.

I wish I could say I found my inner Latina diva, but alas, she may not exist :P The class was full, a good mix of ages and fitness levels. But I really didn’t get much of a workout from it. Maybe I would have if I was a better dancer and knew the steps, but even then, I don’t think it would be comparable to my regular workouts. It’s definitely fun to let loose once in a while, but I have to say it just wasn’t my thang. I still would not discourage any one else from giving it a try though!

Oh, but the dance steps kinda hurt my sensitive runner’s muscles :\

BodyPump was immediately after zumba, and I was feeling good and energized from the class, so I stuck around and did a two-fer! Body pump was much better the second time around. It’s a fine art trying to find the right weights for that class. After the two classes, I left the gym happy, and very hungry!

I did even more kitchen clearing by attacking a box of noodles. I added garlic tomato sauce to my dip from yesterday. Then added half a serving of whole wheat rotini.


I have maybe half a dozen boxes of noodles that I never eat, because I don’t really like noodles! Something about their tasteless and slimy texture. I do like them as an “addition” to things though. So this was really a bowl of sauce with a few noodles :)

Emily expressed interest in hearing about my experience with weight maintenance after talking about my weight loss yesterday. Honestly, I could ramble on about weight maintenance for a while! As I said yesterday, losing weight was very easy for me. Once I cut back on all the unnecessary calories I was consuming (ahem! beer! and lots of it!), the pounds immediately started creeping off.

I don’t want to give the impression that losing weight is a walk in the park. I went a very long time without eating nut butter because it took up a large chunk of my daily calorie allowance. That’s not fun. But at least weight loss has a time limit. I knew I wouldn’t be in a calorie deficit forever, so my eating habits were doable for the short term.

Weight maintenance however, is forever. Now that my friends, is scary. I think the biggest thing you need to learn in maintenance is to accept the fluctuations. And I’m not talking a couple pounds of water weight here and there. Sometimes, you will feel 5-10 lbs heavier. The key is to not freak out. Understand that it’s part of the natural ups and downs of life. Losing it doesn’t mean drastically slashing your calories, or adding an extra hour at the gym every day. It just means maybe eliminating those things that you’ve let creep into your life. Maybe it’s that extra glass of wine in the evening, or giving in to the donuts in the break room at work.

My weight has fluctuated a lot since I lost those final pounds. I gained a little over Christmas last year, and again during a trip to Jamaica. There will be many other times in the future where I expect to go up a little. But I know what eating and exercise habits will allow me to fall back to my “happy weight.” It’s just a matter of getting back into those habits. To me, the heart of maintenance is in those fluctuations. Being able to nip any weight gain in the bud, and get yourself back on track.

Embracing those fluctuations has helped me not freak out over having to maintain this weight for the rest of my life. Right now for example, I feel just a smidge bigger than I like to be. But my fridge is stocked with healthy food and I’ve got stellar workouts planned for the coming week, so I know I’ll be back to that comfortable size very soon.

And for the record, I did gain weight when I went from a calorie deficit to maintenance calories. It was at that time that I threw away my scale! :P Instead, I just started eating what felt natural to me, and the next time I stepped on a scale, I was actually 5 lbs under my goal weight! Just goes to show that your body will never steer you wrong :)

Okay that’s enough rambling for one night! You know what’s next…

Question time!

Are you a good dancer? I did highland dancing as a child. I think jumping up and down on one leg will be the only dance move I’ll ever master :P


Posted on October 22, 2009, in Challenges, Health, Workouts and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 22 Comments.

  1. Yay Zumba! I’ve never tried it, but it looks like a lot of fun… I love dancing (obvs!)- though breakdancing and hip-hop are more my style!

    I always eat soggy cereal… I just posted about this morning’s breakfast and slipped in that I soaked the cereal overnight in a splash of water. Crunch = gross.

    Maintenance is hard for me to get my head around. The goal itself is to have no goal and that goes against everything my personality is- I guess the goal is to stay the same, but then fluctuations are REALLY hard for me to deal with. Though throwing out my scale would be a step…as terrified (beyond words) as I have been the last 2 weeks without a scale and how much I am freaking out about what weight greets me on return (ridic- same weight I am now, just translated into a number), it will be interesting to see how my weight has been affected by the slightly looser reigns/more flexibility around food.

  2. I love to dance around, but I wouldn’t say I am a good dancer. I have my trademark moves I make, usually making my hubby laugh. Dancing feels good – coordinated or not!

    I find weight maintenance to be full of ups and down. it’s not about maintaining a specific weight, but more of a range. I would like to lose a little more (or at least I think I do), so fluctuations don’t bother me so much. Knowing that I have been staying within a 10 pound rage for almost a year and a half is of great comfort to do it for the long haul.

    Another thoughtful post – bravo!

  3. Does dorky dancing count? Cause if so I can totally boogie with the best! :)

  4. I am a terrible dancer. We actually chose our first dance song for the wedding based on which one we liked that was the shortest!

  5. This is SO true and so describing what I’m going through right now. Since March/April, I’ve gone up 12-15 pounds and feel a lot heavier. Some days I have a hard time with it, and some days I know it’s just a normal thing and that maybe my body is even “happier” here. It’s all a part of life!

    And horrible dancer I am.

  6. I took dance lessons as a kid and teenager. I took ballet, jazz, tap and hip-hop. I was good enough to get by when my competition cheer squad went to events…I was better at the cheerleading moves and so on. I still don’t consider myself a good dancer but I do like to dance….if no one is watching ;)

  7. when i was a kid they thought i would be a ballet dancer. i even played one in a movie. weird, b/c i’m really not very graceful.

  8. Hey awesome Susan! Thanks for elaborating on that a little bit. I KNOW if I could just chill and stop thinking so much, my weight would naturally stabilize where it’s supposed to be. Silly brain.

    I am a terrible dancer. No Zumba for me. Everyone else in the class would get a terrific ab workout though—from laughing at me :)

    Did you get my package yet???

  9. Even though I was a performer for MANY, MANY years, “The only booty shaking I do is shivering during the winter months,” I share the same thought!

    I want to try zumba but I think I’ll wait until the bestie gets home for good and make her go with me ;)

  10. The only booty shaking I do is shivering during the winter months. ummmm laughed OUT LOUD. love it. i actually used to be on dance team in high school, so i do know how to bust a move every now and then.

    i LOVED your thoughts on weight maintenance. like you, i threw away my scale because it dictated FAR TOO MUCH in my life. i have accepted the ebbs and flows – before i would freak out if the scale said 5 pounds heavier. but it happens and it WILL happen again. getting back on track, eating healthy, working out and listening to your body is all we really need!

    love you

  11. I’ve been tempted to try Zumba but i have no coordination! One time I went to a cardio class and they included some Zumba and I had no clue what I was doing.. which led to me not really getting a workout!

    Those oats look so good and SO VOLOUMOUS! I want them! haha

  12. I’m a terrible dancer. I tried Zumba once too and was way to uncoordinated. I wish I could’ve danced because the girls who could looked like they were having an awesome time. I was cussing under my breath the whole time! :P

  13. I’m a terrible dancer and had the same exact zumba experience as you. I went with my sister and we looked like two bumbling fools out there! I didn’t get the heart pumping work out I’m use to.

    • I know! There were some women in there who had sweat dripping down their face! Perhaps I just didn’t exhibit the same “zumba passion” as they :P

  14. Love your notes on maintenance – you hit the nail on the head at the end. Our bodies know what they need, we just need to listen. :)

    I realllly want to try Zumba! I think I’m a pretty terrible dancer but I have a deep desire to dance dance dance!!!

  15. I did some dance with my gymnastics training when I was younger. and I have dreams of being a dj so I like to think I’ve got some rhythm :)

    scales are so overrated!

  16. I am an awful dancer. I still can’t believe I ever took ballet. My mom said all I did was do cartwheels!

  17. I SO appreciate this post! “To me, the heart of maintenance is in those fluctuations. Being able to nip any weight gain in the bud, and get yourself back on track.” That is what I need to remember. I tend to get so discouraged when the scale shows a few poinds higher that I want to throw in the towel. I know it’s not logical, but that’s just how my brain works. So good to get reminded that fluctuations are normal!

    I am the WORLD’S. WORST. DANCER.

  18. I love love love love to dance. I don’t know when it happened or why, but I just decided to shake it like there was no tomorrow and now I’m hooked. I love Zumba & Hip Hop but some day I’d like to try tap, as geeky as it seems.

    Your philosophy about maintenance is really fabulous. My husband would have loved you to beat your thoughts into my brain about 30 times by now. He would see me get all distraught over gaining weight on trips and he would say ‘don’t worry, you’ll lose it. you always do’ yet I would absolutely not believe him. Now after our zillionth trip together I think I’m starting to believe. :-)

    Oh, and I haven’t weighed myself in a while- it plays with my mind too much. I just go with how I feel in my own skin.

  1. Pingback: 500 | The Great Balancing Act

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