Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Whatever Wednesday

Got on the scale this morning. No change. Annoyed because I've been really conscious about my snacking or grazing throughout the day and I'm trying to switch things up with my exercise, thinking that my body needs a change in routine to actually change again. I'm not discouraged. I am really enjoying surfing Pinterest for fitness ideas. I find a workout I like and I write it in my little "Oprah's Life Class" journal I got for free through Facebook! It's small enough to take to the gym and stick it in the water bottle holder on the treadmill.

Look familiar?


Today I have to take my car in to get the exhaust fixed so that it no longer sounds like a rally car and will then pass inspection (fingers crossed!). So, I'll be walking the two miles home. I bring my car to a service station by my parents house because we've used him forever, and some times I'll sit and visit with my parents while the car is in the shop. Today I just feel like getting home, getting some stuff done around the house and maybe walking the 1/2 mile to the gym for one of those walking/hiking treadmill workouts I found on Pinterest. Thankfully it did not snow last night, but dear God, please let the rain hold off until I'm home!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Boredom Buster?

More like hump or gut buster. I truly can see how people are pushed to the point of vomiting during a workout. Pinterest. Lovely Pinterest. I wrote out this "Boredom Buster Interval Treadmill Run" that I found on there. Since I do an interval run on Tuesdays I thought it was the perfect time to try something new.


I thought I'd share it in case any of you felt like torturing yourselves.

Now, I know a lot of you do run on an incline when you run on the treadmill. I don't. So, this workout was pretty outside my comfort zone. I had to make several adjustments to it and I STILL only made it to the 35 minute mark. With my 5 minute warm-up I managed 4.2 miles in 40 minutes. I think it was the most intense run I've ever done. When I do intervals, I don't run for 5 minutes at 6.5 or 7.0 mph. I run .25 miles, which at that speed only takes 2.25-2.31 minutes. I was running double that, at an incline! So, now that I've worked out all the numbers, I'm pretty impressed with myself! And so I'm going to attempt it again next week.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Jelly Arms

You know the kind? Where you can hardly lift your mug to your mouth? I just finished the Firm Cardio Sculpt. I've been doing it recently, and for some reason, today killed me! Maybe I shouldn't let so much time go in between workouts?? ;) I can't wait to see how I life the pot to drain the pasta!
The infamous Fanny Lifter. This system is so old it's on VHS!!!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

A Moment To Myself

I shouldn't complain. I get plenty of free time since I only babysit 3 days/week and my kids are 15 and 13. I definitely don't hear "mommy" anymore. Gosh, how sad is that? Most times it's "Mom do I have any clean underwear?" "Mom, are there any clean towels?" "Mom, can I go to the library?" Next year my son will be a junior and my daughter a freshman, so pretty soon the nest may be empty. I'll probably be getting a job outside of the house come September since even the little ones I babysit are growing up and will be in school full-time.


My little ones- Charlie was 5 1/2 and Chelsea was just 4- her first recital.


This past week was mid-winter recess, so my kids were home and I had the 2 little ones all day, instead of shuttling one to the bus stop for 1st grade and picking up the little one from pre-k after her 2 1/2 hours there. I also had my 10 year old niece yesterday, so there were 5 kids in my house ALL day. So today, when Chelsea asked if she could go bowling with her friends then hang out at the library and Charlie asked to go to a friend's house, I was more than willing to be the chauffeur. So what did I do with my free afternoon? I cleaned the living room! I dusted and vacuumed and put all the toys into their proper bins and on their shelves and I put everything that didn't belong in the LR back where it belonged.

This was all to take place while catching up on the 3 episodes of the Biggest Loser I'm behind. (Chelsea has dance and Charlie has jazz band Tuesday nights, so if I don't get to see it from the beginning I'll wait until it goes onto Free on Demand.) Wouldn't you know I went to pause the damn thing so I could walk out of the room and something got screwed up, so I'm still behind! I did get to see the Bethenny Ever After and an episode of RHOOC that I missed, so it wasn't a waste. Oh, and I made dinner- Tastefully Simple's Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe. Now we're just waiting for Daddy to come home to eat and enjoy the last bit of "vacation" before it's back to the grind on Monday, until spring break, which is a very LONG six weeks away. Good news? Only four more months until SUMMER VACATION!!!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wretched Wednesday

So, the batteries in the scale are new and so is my weight- up a pound! I will not let that number define me, yada-yada-yada... It's still annoying, ya know?


Anyway, today is Ash Wednesday, a day of fasting and no meat. Hopefully, I don't pass out. I gave up chocolate, again, which includes any type of candy, chocolate chips in things like cookies and muffins and ice cream. What does that leave? Oh, I said I wouldn't give up chocolate flavor, like I guess the cocoa on Chocolate Chex cereal. But I think I can live without that as well. My grandma always said that we could have what we gave up for Lent on Sundays and I thought she was sort of making it up because she always wanted to spoil us with treats. So last year I looked it up and she was right! Lent is 46 days from Ash Wednesday to Easter because there are 6 Sundays in there. Every Sunday is to be celebrated as Easter Sunday and that is why you are "allowed" to partake of the item you gave up. But, I'm up for the challenge of going the entire 46 days.

You can also look at Lent as a time to give of yourself. Volunteering your time is a huge sacrifice when so many people feel they don't have a moment to spare. It puts the focus on something positive, unlike the self-sacrifice. I really have to look into getting myself and my family involved in some sort of volunteer work. It'll help make us even more appreciative of the little we DO have. This month, our Relay For Life team, Dorothy's Determination, (in honor of my mom's battle with bladder cancer last year), is up and running again for this year's Relay in June. Last year we came in 5th in donations raised out of 90+ teams, so we're going to try and beat last year's amount raised. There are many opportunities to help with the Relay committee in organizing the event, so I think that's where I want to give of my time. RFL is an AMAZING event.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

These Dreams...

I have been dreaming A LOT lately AND remembering them, too! I wonder if it's a result of my falling asleep by 8pm and waking up before the crack of dawn (yesterday was 4:15am). Thank goodness the television shows I follow are either on Free On Demand from my cable company or they're repeated numerous times during the week. (That would include my Bravo reality trash favorites like 'Bethenny Ever After' and almost all of the 'Real Housewives' cities.)


My husband's favorite- stuffed French toast!

Last night I dreamt I was at my mother's house. It must have been a Sunday because almost all of my family was there, and we really do get together after church on Sundays at my parents' house for coffee, rolls and bagels and a lot of LOUD conversation (that's just to be heard). So, I'm one of 5 sisters. My ex-brother-in-law calls us "the council" because we weigh-in on every important topic. Anyway, (our conversations head off on tangents left and right, just like that, and we can't remember our original thought!), two of my sisters were talking about not eating breakfast and I chime in with "Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Do you know that people who regularly eat breakfast are 65% more likely to weigh less than those who don't." Now, that was a dream statistic, not FACTUAL data, but I can't believe I'm coaching people IN MY DREAMS!

In reality, we do have conversations about losing weight and that yes, it's hard, but it's not a secret. I eat less than I used to and I move a hell of a lot more. I want everyone to just do it!

Anyone else frustrated with a loved one about their weight and the actions they are not taking to get on track?

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Too Good To Be True

Found the damn batteries for my scale, you know those round flat ones that cost a small fortune for just one, and you need two?

Damn scale lied to me last week! 154.4! So, I did what any normal person would do and waited until I had to go the bathroom again, then got BACK on the scale. Same frickin' numbers staring back at me! I want to cry! I had a really good week! Well, "Ain't nothin' gonna break my stride..."

Friday, February 17, 2012

11 Random Things (Take 2)

Jen of From FAT to FINISH LINE included me in the tag game this time. I tried this game once before (Click here to read 11 random things about me and see if you were tagged! Keeping The Game Going. If you feel like participating and I didn't tag you, then click on the link!) and I don't know if more than a couple of people participated, but, she had some great questions so I wanted to make sure I answered her!

1). What was your first job?
      My first job ever was babysitting the kid down the block when I was 12. My first job on the books was the summer after graduating high school at a bargain store called Cheap John's. It was a chain here on Long Island and it was the BEST place to find cheap school supplies and candy! When I started there, all the candy bars were 3/$1 (you're lucky to find them on sale for $.79 nowadays) and you could get a one pound solid milk chocolate (REAL chocolate, not that flavored crap) for $.97!! We miss Cheap John's! Other dollar stores just don't cut it!

2). If you could only hear one song for the rest of your life, what would it be?
     This is an impossible question! Amazing Grace? I don't know!

3). Favorite quote or saying?
     Another tough question, Jen! Since I started running, and things get hard, my mantra is "Do it for those who can't."

4). Disney World, Vegas or a cruise?
     I'd have to say Disney World because I haven't done Vegas or a cruise yet! I know my entire family would enjoy themselves at Disney. I think I would be WAY too grumpy in Vegas losing money or watching my husband lose money. And the cruise, I see myself gaining at least 10 pounds in a week from the non-stop eating!

5). Your favorite "kid" movie?
      Ok, I didn't see many Disney movies growing up. We watched a lot of cartoons and sitcoms... But since having kids myself, I LOVE watching all of the animated flicks that come out, even though my kids are older now. I have to say, the Toy Story trilogy was awesome. Toy Story 3 found my girlfriend and I sobbing in the theater, watching Andy give away his toys and head off to college! I can't believe I'm only a couple of years away from sending off one of my own! :(

6). Celebrity crush?
     Mmmm... who to choose? Justin Timberlake? Derek Jeter? Gerard Butler? George Clooney? All of the above?

7). Dream race?
     Thank you Jen for an easy one! NYC Marathon, no doubt about it.

8). Favorite blog?
     Since it was the first blog I ever read, this goes to Katie's Runs For Cookies. I found her when Spark People posted her weight-loss success story/video on Facebook back in June. I became hooked on it and all of the other blogs I've started to follow that relates to my weight-loss and running journey, like Jen's blog.

9). Italian food, Greek food or Asian?
     I've grown up on Italian food since I'm 75% Italian (25% Puerto Rican), so I am pretty capable of making a good Italian meal. Can't say I've had too much Greek food, maybe a few times I've ordered moussaka at the diner. I'll have to pick Asian, specifically our Americanized Chinese. (Not into sushi.) I can't replicate sesame chicken or boneless spareribs at home. If we ever go out (which is RARE) it's to Ding How, our favorite Chinese restaurant. You might remember it from my 40th birthday party!

10). Favorite sports team?
       Yay! Another easy one! "Theeeeeee Yankees win!!!" So ecstatic to have had the chance to run at Yankee Stadium with my husband last summer!

11). What was your first concert?
        My girlfriend had tickets to see Diana Ross at a small theater on LI when we were in high school. Sad, I know. I haven't done many concerts in my lifetime. Madonna at MSG in the 90's. Saw Billy Joel a few times, once with Elton John at the Meadowlands. Most recent concert? Barry Manilow at the Garden with my husband and my parents! I have loved Barry for as long as I can remember!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Could It Be?

I stepped on the scale this morning and this was what was staring back at me:



I'm not sure whether to believe it or not, especially since those damn batteries still haven't been replaced! So, I had to go back and look at all my check-ins on My Fitness Pal, and my lowest weight recorded on there was 147.6 on 10/29/11! I have been working out diligently, as usual, but I've also not been eating after dinner again. It seems my resolve dissipates once the couch calls my name and there's a little reality television to zone out with. Brushing my teeth and just going to bed helps! If this is accurate then I'm only 8 pounds away from goal (again).

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!


These are waiting for my husband to get home from work in 20 minutes. Can't wait to share a few with him! ;)

Nothing special today. My husband went into work later than usual and spent some time with me before I had to pick up the little one I babysit from pre-k. No flowers, chocolates or dinner out. I asked him not to spend any money on me since we just got done paying off our three Christmases and I renewed my gym membership this month. We will be bleeding money profusely this year with two weddings among other things (like getting my car inspected this month and possibly another car for Charlie...). Lord, I need a better job!

Anyhow, how was YOUR Valentine's Day???

Monday, February 13, 2012

"And I Ate My Very First..."

BRUSSEL SPROUT!!! I am 40 frickin' years old and never had the opportunity to even try one! I mean, they must have been on a restaurant menu somewhere along the way, but my mother never made them, none of my sisters have ever made them... I guess EVERYONE was as scared of them as I was! I always heard they smelled really bad and had a funky mushy surprise inside. Well, I've been seeing them on both Katie's and Lori's blog, so I thought I would just break down and give them a try.

I prepared them like the roasted vegetables I usually make (zucchini, grape tomatoes, cauliflower, peppers...) by tossing them with about 1 T. vegetable oil, 1 T parmesan cheese and some Tastefully Simple Seasoned Salt or Adobo seasoning. I spread them out on my PC bar pan and roasted them at 425* for I don't know how long! I remember hearing that they were in the same family as cauliflower, but I didn't expect them to smell exactly like it while roasting. I figured they were done when they were caramelized and a bit crispy. And then I ate my very first one... and I'm HOOKED!

(Not my photo- I quartered mine)

There's plenty more items on the Food List Challenge I have yet to try. (Can you believe brussel sprouts isn't included in the list??) Some seem to be pretty basic foods. I do know for a fact that I will NEVER try durian. I've seen too many faces made by Andrew Zimmern on the Travel Channel because of both the aroma and the consistency of it to even bother an attempt.

Are there any foods that you have never eaten because you're scared of them??

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Healthy Heart Weekend

Lori, a fellow blogger with an awesome weight-loss success story at http://www.findingradiance.com/ posted her Healthy Heart Weekend challenge to her readers a few weeks ago. Thankfully she reminded us all of the challenge, so I hit the gym early to get in the 9 mile run I pledged to complete. I'm one of those crazy people who actually prefer to run on the treadmill than outside. Don't get me wrong, I WILL run outside, but I prefer inside. I like that the treadmill keeps me at the pace I want to go- I have no choice, my mind can't tell me "no!" I also like the distraction of the television (I usually watch the Today Show and Live with Kelly) and the comings and going of all the other gym rats. It just makes the time go faster! Once the weather improves I will make it my business to run outside more- promise.


The "first" 6
 So, I found one treadmill that had a 97 minute workout limit and hopped on, knowing that with a 10 min/mile pace I'd get my 9 miles done. Well, at 1.15 miles in the damn thing shut down on me. I started her back up and she crapped out again at .15 miles this time. (Thankfully I didn't kill myself!) So I had to resign myself to another treadmill that only allowed a 60 minute workout. So, I ran another 6 miles in 59:40 and then started her up again to finish my 9 miles. I ran 1.7 miles and because I want to PROVE I did my 9 miles I walked the rest to total 3 miles.

The last 3
Gee, I guess these pictures don't really prove anything, huh? I really have to hold today's paper up if I want bullet-proof evidence of the dang workout. Definitely can't fluff anything with the Forerunner, though! So, should I push for 10 next week? Nine miles has been my longest runs so far.

Anyway, there's still time to participate in Lori's challenge if you want! Click here to sign up!www.findingradiance.com/2012/01/23/healthy-heart-weekend-sign-up-feb-10-12/

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Second Biggest Eating Day Of The Year

Well, that's what I heard them say about Superbowl Sunday on the Today Show, I think. It's second only to Thanksgiving. Can you believe that Americans will consume 1.25 BILLION chicken wings tomorrow??!!?? They're not really my thing. (Of course, if they're there...) It's all of the other crap that will be out along side the chicken wings that's dangerous for me- pigs in a blanket, chips and dip, my sweet and sour meatballs... then there's dessert!


It's my side of the family that gets together and squeezes into my parents' kitchen and living room to watch the game. (Can't wait for more commercials! The ones I saw were hysterical.) Superbowl Sunday is treated like any other holiday in our family. Now, mind you, there are a lot of us. When we're all present and accounted for the grand total is 30. That's my parents, siblings, spouses and kids. So we need a lot of food, but we probably have enough to feed at least 15 more. We all have to bring something and a dessert. This year there will be a roasted turkey (my parents won it from our local deli), pulled pork, my dad's chili, chicken wings and my sweet and sour meatballs. I don't know what everyone else is bringing. I also decided to make a veggie platter- peppers, cukes, baby carrots and broccoli served with a creamy cucumber dressing. I plan on parking myself right in front of the thing!! I think I'm going to make monkey munch for dessert- chocolate and peanut butter, my favorite!

This year is extra special because the Giants are in! Go Big Blue!

What's everyone else's plans for the big game?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

You Could Knock Me Over With A Feather

We have been experiencing some wonderful weather here in the mid-Atlantic states. Yesterday's high was around 62*!! I didn't take advantage of it at all. However, today I decided to get myself in gear and take a run outside. It was a tad chillier (about 42*) and a little windy. I was going to run my 3 mile tempo run and end it at the gym. I STILL can't get myself to just run, so I went to the track, where it always seems colder and windier. I put on my long-sleeve tech shirt, my mittens, my headband and my fleece and I was ready. I don't know if all the treadmill running/interval training has really increased my speed or I was just cold and wanted to finish, but I recorded my fastest 3 miles EVER!


That's really 12 laps which equals 3 miles.

I am beside myself! Giddy even!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Shockingly Enough... (and a little TMI, just warning you!)

Since January 2nd, I'm down 3 pounds. I believe it was the 42 trips (not exaggerating, although I didn't actually count) to the bathroom over the last 2 days. I can't believe how much water I can hold onto, and then RELEASE! My husband thinks there's something wrong with me, especially since I've been to the urologist for microscopic blood in the urine (hematuria), and my mother's history with bladder cancer. Over the last few years I have had several cystoscopies (scope into the bladder via the urethra), one under sedation in the hospital (it'll be 1 year on 2/3!) and a CT scan to find out the cause. I've also been to a nephrologist for another 24 hour urine test (those are REALLY fun) and he said the amount of blood found is an acceptable amount and that my kidneys just allow red blood cells into my urine when filtering the blood. He explained it as the kidneys work as a sieve and the holes are a little too big to allow red blood cells through. You didn't know you were going to get a biology lesson when reading about my weigh-in, now did you?

Anyway, I have to keep an eye on things because of my family history, so I shall be returning to the good ole doctor's office for another cystoscopy. I think it's even more invasive than the OB/GYN. I mean, this guy is standing there, with the long scope connected to his eye and he's looking and moving the scope and looking, and there you are, in all your Brittney Spears glory... So, the reason why I know that it's normal for me is because it happens every month AND I only woke up once to go to the bathroom last night. If it was a chronic thing, I definitely would be worried about it.

So, down 3 pounds this month (I won't tell you what last week's results were!).

Cropped to remove my unsightly toenails! Looks like I need new batteries!