Friday, July 31, 2009

Month-End Review, July

During July, I signed up for my first sprint triathlon and, in doing so, discovered that I loved bicycling. The last bicycle that I had was stolen ages ago and I just never had the desire to buy another one. Now, I'm hooked and I'll make sure that I keep the bike locked up.

I also broke through a plateau and I'm looking forward to reaching another milestone -- losing 60 pounds sometime in the near future. Here's how I got physical this month:

10 Minute Solution: Fitness Ball Workouts (Upper Body): 4 x's

10 Minute Solution: Tone Trouble Zones: (10 Minute Stretch): 1 x

AMT: 3 x's

Bicycling: 8 x's

Bowling: 1 x

Mowing Lawn: 1 x

StairMaster: 7 x's

Stationary Bike: 3 x's

Swimming: 7 x's

Treadclimber: 4 x's

Treadmill: 3 x's

Walking: 1 x

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Proper Addiction

When I get addicted to something, I have a proper addiction which sometimes works in my favor.

I packed my gym bag but didn't feel like going to the gym. Instead, I gathered some stuff and got the ol' bicycle out.

First, I stopped by the library since I had an overdue Time magazine. I had already turned in two Time mags hoping that they were the NOT renewable one. Finally, I found the overdue one which had fallen behind my bed.

So far, I've managed to rack up $1.00 dollar in fines. As you can see, most of the books are cookbooks or fitness magazines.

07/30/2009 OVERDUE
$0.15 Time.

07/15/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Basic swimming, by Robert Kiphuth and Harry M. Burke.

05/20/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Health.

05/11/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Painting for dummies / by Katharine Kaye McMillan and Patricia Hart McMillan.

05/05/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 The food you crave : luscious recipes for a healthy life / Ellie Krieger.

04/29/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 The ultimate weight solution cookbook : recipes for weight loss freedom / Phil McGraw.

04/29/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Cooking light low-fat, low-calorie quick & easy cookbook / [editor: Deborah Garrison Lowery].

04/17/2009 OVERDUE
$0.15 Bon appetit.

04/07/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 The ultimate weight solution cookbook : recipes for weight loss freedom / Phil McGraw.

04/07/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Cooking light low-fat, low-calorie quick & easy cookbook / [editor: Deborah Garrison Lowery].

04/07/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Health.

04/07/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Shape.

04/07/2009 OVERDUE
$0.05 Make it super simple / with G. Garvin.

03/11/2009 OVERDUE
$0.15 Fast food fix : 75+ amazing recipe makeovers of your fast food restaurant favorites / Devin Alexander
After I biked to the library, I deposited a small load of magazines in the recycle bin further up the street then I headed to the park where I saw a dog photography session, a rabbit, walkers, runners and these creatures.

I paused to watch the sun work its magic on my return trip.

Once I put away the bike and got settled in, I ate some cold watermelon that was very refreshing.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Bike Carrier: $40

Bottle Cage: $8

Chain: $20

Gel Seat Cover: $15

Incredibell jellibell: $10

Helmet: $16

Wheel: $45

Being on a bike again: priceless

Here are some pictures from this afternoon's bike ride in Lafayette Park.

America's Most Bike-Friendly Cities

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Going The Extra Mile

As soon as I got on my bike, I realized that I had left my MP3 player at home which was a bit deflating.

After the first mile, I hardly noticed the lack of music and, on the way back, I provided my own soundtrack. My apologies to the other riders because I was definitely off-key.

I decided that I want to work my way up to the Chain of Rocks Bridge. Last week, I was able to do 14 miles and, today, I was able to bicycle for a total of 16.

I probably forgot my MP3 player because I was so busy packing my Gatorade, water, apple and camera. Oh well, I enjoyed myself on what is fast becoming my favorite place to bicycle, The St. Louis Riverfront Trail.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Could You Survive?

Going through some old e-mail subscriptions, I saw a link to this story, Woman Didn't Hesitate To Run After Attacker, while reading a post at Blogging Away Debt.

Christina Hennigan, a marathon runner, was attacked and took some hard hits but ran after the man long enough that an off-duty border patrol agent witnessed the chase and, eventually, apprehended Hennigan's attacker.

Hennigan's story jogged my memory about an article that I had seen in one of the fitness magazines. A doctor, Dr. Pamela Peeke, was inspired to start a television show after seeing footage of a woman who was about to be rescued but couldn't hold onto a branch long enough.

Dr. Peeke's show appears on the Discovery channel. Since I don't have cable, I haven't seen it but I like the premise.

One of the tag lines is:
Odds are you're not fit enough to save your own life let alone some one's that you love.
Are you fit enough to survive a natural disaster et al?

When Fitness Means Life or Death

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Few Things That 'Drea Knows For Sure

I second guess myself no matter how many plateaus I've encountered.

Should I or shouldn't I take a multivitamin?

Am I drinking enough water?

I wonder if I'm eating too many fat grams or not eating enough at all.

I think about getting back to basics: army crawls and planks with weights.

I ponder giving in to Papa John's at work-related training sessions instead of looking like an oddball pulling my lunch and snacks out of multiple containers.

I know that exercise is good for me, period. I know that I'm more resilient.

Still, I was relieved when I finally blasted through this most recent plateau and I believe my newest addiction, bicycling, helped me get over the hump.

Serendipity is amazing.

I was reading through old e-mails and came across this post, Love Life, Not Stuff, from Zen Habits. I love this quote:

Rediscover a passion for life. Get outside and feel nature, appreciate the beauty of the world around you. Get active, do some gardening or yardwork, play a sport, go for a walk, take a hike, go for a swim, ride a bike. Feel the life coursing through you. Breathe it in.

And this simple question posed on Twitter by TriathleteMag moved me:

Do you know what you're capable of?

TriathleteMag, I'm definitely trying to find out.

Here are some pictures from this afternoon's bike ride in Tower Grove Park where I stopped to smell the proverbial roses along the way.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Duly Inspired

As I was psyching myself to sign up for the sprint triathlon, I taped two stories on the bookcase near my bed; one story is really about doggedness more than anything else.

David Goggins, who was featured in Runner's World magazine, is a Navy Seal who wanted to raise money for veterans' families. On Goggin's first outing to prepare for the Badwater Ultramarathon, he ran 100 miles in under 19 hours in a San Diego race.

Now, I don't normally go around saying what I would never do but I feel comfortable in saying that I will never participate in a 100 mile marathon. Half marathons are grueling enough but Goggins definitely served as motivation to get me through my event.

And the tiny triathletes?

Well, I was drawn to the athlete in the black swimming suit. There is something so joyous about the smile on her face and the smile reminded me of Nel in Sula when she says we were girls together. And, on a non-literary note, it just illustrates how exercise makes you feel good.

Once, I was rocking a white outfit and someone said that I looked like my mother who is a nurse. When I repeated the comment to my mother she said If you were looking like me, you were looking good.

If I look like this woman, one of the beauties in Essence magazine's 2009 Ageless Beauties feature, I'll be looking good at 70.

And I love what triathlete Laurel Wassner had to say in Fitness magazine:

My mind knows how to take over when my body wants to give in.
Yeah, girl, that is the spirit.

And one more:

Monday, July 20, 2009

Cake In The Morning

My office mate is at work for all of five minutes before she's carrying two pieces of lemon cake. Are you kidding me?

It's something about sweets in the morning that makes me nervous. I figure if you start off eating sweets in the a.m., you'll eat them all day.

Later on, I headed to the water cooler to start on my third cup of water and saw the cake and Trader Joe's cookies. And I know the Trader Joe's dealer; she goes every weekend and I love it that she thinks about her colleagues. But must we drown our Monday morning sorrow in miniature cookies and chocolate-covered biscotti?

Memo to my office mate:

Please stop eating the swiss cake rolls, wafers, chocolate wafernusse and cake in the morning.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

'Drea On The Levee

I was looking for a new place to bicycle and asked a friend about the St. Louis Riverfront Trail. She said that it was one of her favorite trails but she also advised me not to go in the afternoon because she had seen some shady looking characters.

I stuffed my bike in the trunk and headed downtown but before I went, I did some research (The St. Louis Riverfront Trail).

I wasn't quite sure where I would park but part of Lenore K. Sullivan Blvd. was closed, I guess, after Live On The Levee. I'm glad that it was closed because it led me past the President Casino and to the parking area for the trail.

My friend's words rang in my ears because, as I started out, there was this guy splayed out on the ground like a starfish. I imagine that he was tired because he had about five very full bags of aluminum cans.

I am impressed with the STL Riverfront Trail. The part that I traveled on was mostly paved and flat which did not hurt my feelings. The signage is good and I like the art work and, even, poetry along the way. In fact, the bollards ahead sign amused me greatly. I hadn't even heard of a bollard until today.

I can see why my friend likes the riverfront trail but I can also see why she cautioned me as well. It was reassuring to see other bicyclists along the way.

The first three miles are not very scenic and levee walls comprise the scenery. At some points, it looks like you're looking at the underbelly of the city. In addition, the chemical smell is not nice but endurable.

My goal was to make it from the downtown area to the Chain of Rocks Bridge but by the time that I got to Riverview Blvd. and mile seven, I had to admit to myself that I was a bit wiped out and I needed something in the tank to get back to the beginning of the trail. Although I had eaten breakfast, I should have taken a snack.

There are several rest areas, including one around the three mile point where you can you can fix a flat, get some water or use the restroom. Otherwise, you'd probably have to detour on one the accessible streets like Humboldt, E. Grand or Riverview.

I enjoyed my bike ride, appreciated the declines, loved having the whistling wind at my back and singing at the top of my lungs.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Slow Submerge

It took me 2.5 hours to mow the lawn today because I hit the primer button too many times and flooded whatever gets flooded. Sigh.

After trimming a few weeds and dragging some exceptionally large Poke Salad down the alley to the yard trash bin, I got clean so that I could go to the pool.

Polk Salad spreads like a virus but, apparently, some folks are crazy about the stuff.

I'm still swimming indoors since the weather has been unseasonably cool.

Now, Mehlville Pool bills itself as a best kept secret.

Come on in, the water is ALWAYS fine!

It doesn’t matter what the temperature is outside, the Mehlville School District indoor swimming pool is waiting for you. From swimnastics classes to springboard diving, the Mehlville pool offers something for everyone with its year around swimming programs.
The promotional brochure even goes on to describe the pool as heated. Ha, ha. Even when the water is not frigid, it's a close call. My strategy is to just dive right in and not try to slowly submerge myself because, really, the slow submerge is tortuous.

I had to buy myself a new swimming suit because I destroyed the other one; it's loose, showing white fissures and catching water. My first swimming suit lasted over 10 years because, frankly, I was never in it. I found a $25 dollar suit at Dillard's at the end of the season last year. Then, I got another one for my birthday but they had to all be adjusted once I started loosing inches and the suits were not ideal for lap swimming anyway.

I first went looking for a swimsuit at B & B Aquatics because they were the only local store that sold plus-size fitness swimwear even though I ended up making an Ebay purchase since they had a color and style that I liked.

My favorite swimsuit so far is the Solid Ultraback Conservative.

I'm hoping that this new suit will last for awhile. Although my conviction, from the start, has been that any investment in fitness attire is a worthwhile one.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

30 Days

While not a Morgan Spurlock joint, I did go to The St. Louis Fitness Factory for 30 days.

I first learned about the Fitness Factory from a mailer which I let expire but the offer was still being promoted on the website.

Fitness Factory

The teaser on my mailer said no hassles and it was 99.9% accurate. Other than a pitch about two months free instead of one if I joined on the spot, my 30 days was pretty much a hassle-free experience.

The Fitness Factory is beautiful. From the ultra-cool logo to the pastel blue and green walls, it's elegantly decorated. And, for some reason, the restored loft felt like a tree house to me -- the better to feel like I was playing instead of exercising.

I love the mezzanine. Even if there were quite a few exercisers, it never felt crowded since people were split up. Also, no matter what time I went to the Fitness Factory, there were machines available. I never felt like it was overcrowded.

Fitness Factory has your standard cardio machines like the elliptical trainer, treadmill, stair climber and stationary bike. They also have treadclimbers which was a new machine for me. Missing from FF were AMT, EFX and Arc Trainer machines.

Perks included towel service and free parking which is crucial since parking downtown can be a headache.

I liked the overall decor, cleanliness, digital locker system, the European-style bathroom stalls and the Kenyan shoe drop off. Fitness Factory also offered several classes, including spinning and Zumba.

Old sneakers were being collected for the Shoeman.

Shoe4Africa and RecycledRunners also collect shoes.

And one of the coolest things of all at the Fitness Factory? Pilates on the roof.

A one year membership is $539.00 dollars. With processing fees, I pay about $315 a year at my current chain fitness club.

I really enjoyed working out the Fitness Factory. In fact, I felt like I was at a spa and, speaking of spas, there are also tanning booths on the third floor of the FF.

What can I say Fitness Factory? You're Beautiful.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Bowling Doesn't Burn Many Calories

One of my peeps invited me to go bowling which I haven't done in eons. There's something about slinging a bowling ball down a lane and knocking down pins that moves me.

I took my workout clothes to work just in case the bowling didn't pan out but when it did, I was still considering doing a drive-by workout since, let's face it, bowling doesn't burn many calories.

I thought about the time it would take to do a drive-by workout and between travel time and an actual 30 minute workout, I would be rushing to the bowling alley sans dinner.

My back-up plan was to go home, grab my bike and ride around for 30 minutes. Bicycling is my new, non-food jones. I'm so glad that I hopped on a bike again. I love going downhill and having the wind at my back; it's so exhilarating. There's also something about the movement that you can achieve on a bike that's different from cardio machines.

I rode around then went in the house to eat before heading to the bowling alley. I should have followed my first mind and cut down my fingernails but I didn't and I loss a couple of nails the hard way. My scores were awful (63 & 76 et al) but I didn't care. I had fun.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Swimming Takes Me Away

I wanted to go to an outdoor pool but the weather wasn't warm enough. I headed to Mehlville's 7:30 p.m. open swim even though I knew the water might be cold there as well. To my surprise, the water wasn't frigid.

Instead of slicing through the water, I felt as if I was weighted down -- maybe by a rather long day at work.

Between watching this father teach his two boys to swim and listening to chatty Kathleen, I got in only 11 laps but I was satisfied and relaxed afterwards.

I practiced my sidestroke and my front crawl breathing seems to be a little better.

This sign amuses me.

As a new or non-swimmer, I certainly wouldn't want to go to the pool with an irresponsible adult.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Post-Triathlon Report

If I had watched this Muscles Used, I would have known where I would feel the pain.

My quadriceps and gluteus maximus took the brunt of the triathlon which made it very interesting to ascend and descend steps today.

I was going to do yoga but got home later than expected. I knew better than to go to the gym but it's hard to sit still these days. So, I did the upper body workout of 10 Minute Solution: Fitness Ball Workouts and the 10 minute stretch portion of 10 Minute Solution: Tone Trouble Zones! Stretching with a resistance band never felt so good. The stretching combined with a hot bath seems to have alleviated the soreness.

Here's a random fact that I picked up while reading the May 2009 edition of Real Simple:

The patent number for Pierre Lallement's velocipede, granted in 1866 in the United States. The French mechanic is widely believed to be the father of the modern bicycle...

Sunday, July 12, 2009

1/4 Mile Swim, 11 Mile Bike, 3 Mile Run

When I sent off the registration for the 2009 South County YMCA Triathlon, I wondered just what I had done.

I didn't have a bike and I hadn't ridden one in over 10 years.

My cousin, Chiquita, kept insinuating that I was going to feel the pain. She advised me to, at least, do the hill mode on the stationary bike at the gym and, let me tell you, those stationary bikes really don't come close to the actual bike experience.

I looked on Craigslist for a bike and I also went to A & M Cyclery and Sunset Cyclery to look at the shiny new toys but I didn't want to plop down $400 plus on a fancy bike. Chiquita told me that I could have one of the bikes that had been sitting in her garage.

I took the bike to get a tune up etc. on July 3rd and it was supposed to be ready on July 7th but there was some obscure part that hadn't arrived. I finally picked up the bike yesterday and rode it around the block just to make sure that I still knew how to ride one.

I tried not to let my perfectionism get in the way of participating in this event. I did read through Triathlon Training for Dummies and The Complete Idiots Guide to Triathlon Training though.

I poured over my registration packet to try to familiarize myself with the routes.

I was nervous as all get out and didn't sleep well last night.

A brownie point for me for showing up. I listened to Buju Banton's Champion as I got closer to The Kennedy Recreation Complex because I was in need of some inspiration.

I wasn't the only one with butterflies. This woman told me that she felt like vomiting and that she had actually drank a cafe mocha beforehand and, therefore, had material that was capable of being ejected.

Here's the transition area and my transition spot that I found wayyyy in the back:

I miscalculated the number of laps that needed to be done. Eight laps = 400 meters in a 50 meter lane. Einstein only finished six laps because there was 15 minutes between heats and it took a little over 15 minutes to finish 300 meters.

I am proud of myself for completing 11 miles on the bike. I got off a couple of times because I couldn't make it up hills. I even drank some Gatorade left over from my marathon days. Today, I didn't care about the high fructose corn syrup in the 'rade.

The participants and volunteers were incredibly nice and encouraging. When I was walking the bike to make it up one of the hills, this woman stopped to ask if I had a flat and so many folks cheered me on throughout the 11 miles. The last hill just about did me in but this woman talked me through it and, as we were going down the hill, she told me to keep pedaling to flush my legs out. I was like, okay, whatever you say since you just rocked that monstrous hill.

It took me 2:19:32 to finish the tri. I should have had a Barack Obama sticker on my bike because during the ride, I had to tell myself Yes, you can.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Up Two

I’m up two pounds. I weigh myself just about every day so it could be a normal fluctuation.

Just when I feel like I should be losing weight, the scale heads north.

I’m being consistent with drinking water and I even changed my exercise routine a bit. I’ve decided to hit the StairMaster every time that I go to the gym because it really gets my heart rate up.

I do still eat after 8:00 p.m. which might be an issue but one that I really don’t want to deal with right now.

I subscribe to Losing It! With Jillian Michaels and her How To Take Off Those Last 10 Pounds was timely but not necessarily doable. I barely manage to drink five cups of water a day and I don’t think that 10 cups is realistic but I’m going to make #3 a goal.

Here’s an excerpt from that June 12th epistle from Michaels.

Losing your first 50 pounds might have been tough, but believe me, dropping those final few stubborn pounds is a whole different challenge. The body struggles to hold on to that last bit of fat for survival purposes.

Now, don't get me wrong — you can lose the weight if you want to, but it will require you to muster a tremendous amount of restraint and willpower. If you're really up for it, do the following for 30 days:

1. Cut your sodium to 1,000 mg a day.
2. Drink at least 80 ounces of water daily.
3. Cut out processed foods.
4. Abstain from alcohol.
5. Train at 85 percent of your MHR (maximum heart rate) for 1 hour 5 times a week.

You can do a lot in 30 days — in fact, I can pretty much guarantee you will lose at least 5 pounds. And you'll feel like a rock star!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Past Tense

I worked week-old stiffness out of my neck at the Kennedy Rec Complex.

I did eight laps before being overrun by the furious front crawlers in the designated lap lane.

I thought about Thich Nhat Hanh and mindfulness as I watched the clear blue sky and the clear clouds.

I practiced doing the sidestroke on my left side which turned out to be a clumsy effort and I, of course, practiced the front crawl.

Lately, I've been feeling like this clinging bird on a wire.

Monday, July 6, 2009

English to English Translation

Original Document

Chiquita (cousin): So, what are you going to do next?

Me: *Shrug* I don't know.

Al (Aunt): Maybe sit yourself down.

Translated Text

Chiquita: So, what are you going to do next with your crazy self?

Me: I don't know yet since the most recent Fleet Fleet Sports newsletter has not come out.

Al: You need to sit your ass down somewhere.

Translator's Notes:

Honestly, after work today, I felt like I needed to go sit myself down somewhere; I didn't feel like doing much of anything. The irony of it all is that the StairMaster will make you leave that 9-to-5 up on the shelf and, after sitting practically all day, exercise is not only needed but gives me a boost of energy.

About 25 minutes into a 40 minute stint on a stationary bike (random hill mode), Bob Sinclair's song came up in my MP3 shuffle rotation and all I could say to myself was "'Drea, Hold On."

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Sunday Menu, #2

Note: All food cooked by my Aunt G except cornbread which was made by my grandmother.

  • Banana Pudding

  • Black-eyed Peas

  • Cornbread

  • Fried Chicken

  • Fried Corn

  • Fried Okra

  • Pound Cake

  • The banana pudding, corn and cornbread almost made me cave. I know, I know -- everything in moderation.

    Last Sunday, my aunt baked tilapia. You can eat the fish, she said matter-of-factly. I didn't even ask what was used for flavoring. Flexibility is required now and then.

    Before I knew it, my aunt had already warmed up the food. I wasn't even hungry but I sat down before two pieces of tilapia, a huge baked potato, two strawberries (nice touch) and a sizable salad.

    I almost declined to eat the second piece of tilapia but the fillets were small. I put the strawberries back and picked a few tomatoes and bell pepper strips out of the salad. My aunt said that she almost gave me a third piece of tilapia but she knew that I wouldn't eat it.

    Old Jones, #2

    I was going through some clutter and found this relic.

    I can remember hauling myself across town for Il Vicino when I could have been making my own pizzas. Besides having good pizza, I liked that Il Vicino's was not Pizza Hut where they would unceremoniously dump almost whole red onions onto the pie.

    Il Vicino is inviting. The interior and exterior is visually appealing. If you sit outdoors, you can look at the beautiful metropolis of Clayton and contemplate where to dine next at perhaps First Watch or City Coffee House & Creperies or...

    Usually, I would pick up my pizza from Il Vicino then head straight to Straub's. How could I not go? Straub's was right up the street. And as Shug said to Celie in The Color Purple : I think God gets angry when you walk past the color purple and don't pay attention. I felt the same way about Straub's and getting to the dessert corner.

    Saturday, July 4, 2009

    The Skinny

    After reading The Omnivore's Dilemma, I decided to give Louis J. Aronne's The Skinny on Losing Weight Without Being Hungry another try since I was still in learning about food mode.

    I first saw Aronne on Late Night With David Letterman in a cheesy Biggest Loser-like segment. If my memory serves me, I believe that Aronne was one of the doctors on Letterman's quintuple bypass surgery team.

    The cheesy segment initially made me go in search of Aronne's book since the Letterman staffer lost weight following Aronne's advice.

    I like the front cover teasers:
    Can't shed those pounds? It's not your fault. Dieting is not about willpower.
    It's pleasing when I'm told things like it's not your fault.

    One of the things that cracked me up was Aronne's oft-repeated mantra:

    You can have an unlimited amount of vegetables.
    No one ever tells you that you can have an unlimited amount of those delicious Ikea almond tarts.

    Aronne's reinforcement of simple points stuck with me:

  • Choose the gym closet to your home.

  • Empty calories are fattening.

  • Lean protein is filling.

  • Low-calorie foods are filling.

  • They (liquids like soda) evade every calorie-detecting mechanism in your body.

  • ...You just can't bully your body into losing the perfect amount of weight.

  • In Chapter 5, The Skinny Lunch Makeover, Aronne talks about the order of eating lunch: salad then vegetables then lean protein. To further illustrate his point, he puts the calorie count of some salad/vegetable items:

  • 2 cups lettuce = 15 calories

  • An entire bell pepper = 30 calories

  • One large cucumber = 34 calories

  • 1 cup mushrooms = 15 calories

  • 1 cup broccoli = 30 calories

  • For those busy days, Aronne suggests having the following at-the-ready:

  • Bagged salad mix

  • Steam-in-a-bag vegetables

  • One or more Skinny-recommended frozen dinners

  • Aronne's recommendations for eating out at restaurants are beneficial.

    The Skinny Resources are helpful too as are the Skinny Mini asides. Here's part of one:

    Capsaicin, the active ingredient in cayenne and other hot peppers, may help you eat less by affecting levels of appetite-suppressing brain chemicals...
    His whole person approach is refreshing:

  • Learn how to relax.

  • Don't do it (exercise) for vanity.

  • I'm starting now on the laughing/relaxation portion of the program.

    Friday, July 3, 2009

    Got To Give It Up

    I don't know how I convinced myself that veggie chips are okay. I was reading Prevention magazine and came across this article.

    What's in Your Veggies Snack?

    And then I googled upon this one:

    Veggie chips: Trick or treat?

    I got to give it up. It being veggie chips although my mind did drift to Marvin Gaye.

    I gotta finish the remnants first.

    Kudos to what's his face Bob Harper of The Biggest Loser fame for, according to the June 29th issue of TV Guide, eating 2,000 to 2,500 calories a day of unprocessed food.

    List of Natural Foods

    Thursday, July 2, 2009

    Cooking Outside The Bag

    Lately, I've been relying on food in bags like Trader Joe's Marinated Chicken, Birds Eye Steamfresh vegetables and Alexia Oven Fries etc. for dinner.

    I tired of cooking even though I'm constantly getting cookbooks from the library.

    And, sometimes, by the time I get home from the gym, I don't even feel like warming anything up; I just make a sandwich and have some Wasa crackers and hummus on the side.

    I saw No-Cheese Lasagna in Bob Greene's cookbook and finally decided to try it.

    Bob Greene's No-Cheese Vegetable Lasagna

    The most labor intensive part of this recipe was chopping the onions, garlic and tomatoes. Blending the basil,

    almonds, walnuts and onions etc. was a bit messy but the flavor it produces is definitely worth the disorder. The basil mixture actually had a cheese-like consistency. I thought about sprinkling some Parmesan on the finished product but the No-Cheese situation held its own.

    I would make this recipe again but I would add, at least, mushrooms to the mix.

    Wednesday, July 1, 2009

    Cake At Work

    Here's part of an e-mail that I got at work yesterday:

    Please stop by, say Good Bye and have a piece of cake.
    Whenever there's cake at work, it reminds me of Seinfeld's "The Frogger" episode. At Elaine's job, they're constantly having an occasion that requires cake. Elaine gets so miffed that she takes a sick day but when she returns, there's cake.

    Elaine is sitting at her desk smelling a pen.

    ELAINE (thinking): This pen smells really bad. So why do I keep smelling it? Is it too late for me to go to law school?

    There's a knock on the door and several co-workers enter with a cake.

    ELAINE: What is this?

    MALE WORKER: You were out sick yesterday, so we got you a get-well cake.

    FEMALE WORKER: It's carrot. It's good for you.

    WORKERS (singing): Get well get well soon, we wish you to get--

    ELAINE: Stop it! That's not even a song! I mean, now we're celebrating a sick day?

    MALE WORKER: I think it's nice.

    ELAINE: What? What is nice? Trying to fill the void in your life with flour and sugar and egg and vanilla? I mean, we are all unhappy. Do we have to be fat, too? Not you Becky, I know you have a slow metabolism. I don't want one more piece of cake in my office!...
    Once Elaine puts the kibosh on cake, she misses the sugar rush and gets into trouble as a result.

    Speaking of cake, the annual obesity rankings are out.

    America's Fattest States: Mississippi Still Tops List, But Alabama Closes In