Pinterest for the soul

In honor of the giant cup of froyo I devoured last night (cake batter, peanut butter and chocolate covered strawberry topped with peanut butter chips, mini m&ms and chocolate chips) I give you this:

Source: taraburner.com via Jodi on Pinterest

 

And this:

 

Also, here’s to starting the day right, after a fabulous sugar-induced sleep:

Two-egg omelette stuffed with cheese and a sliced banana sprinkled with cinnamon

Happy Friday!

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Have you met….WIAW?

I had so much fun posting What I Ate Wednesday last week – and I’m glad you guys seemed to enjoy it, too!

So here we are, back for another go. These are Monday’s eats, but like I said last week, my meals don’t change much day to day, so you can safely assume I’ve eaten versions of the dishes below every day.

 

Breakfast: Overnight oats! What’s that you say? You’ve never made overnight oats? It is the easiest no-fuss breakfast for hot days or early starts. You just mix all the ingredients together at night, stick the bowl in fridge and enjoy in the morning!

In my bowl went:

  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1/3 cup (30 g) of raw oats
  • 3/4 cup (6 oz) of unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tbsp (12 g) of chia seeds

The possibilities with mix-ins are endless. Sometimes I top it with almond butter or add in some pumpkin and yogurt. I also had the obligatory cup of coffee (and a second large iced coffee mid morning. Addicted!)

Lunch: A big container of butter lettuce topped with baby carrots, 1/2 oz of almonds, 2 tbsp of Trader Joe’s spicy peanut vinaigrette, 50 g of avocado and one of Trader Joe’s fully-cooked, all-natural chicken breasts. I finished it off with an apple. This lunch kept me satisfied until dinner. Usually I need a snack around 3-4 p.m., but not after this meal. I think it must have the right mix of fat/carbs/protein to keep me satisfied. I will definitely be repeating this lunch often!

Dinner: I roasted up a big tray of veggies including 1/2 a sweet potato, half a crown of broccoli and 10 asparagus. To round out the meal I made an omelette with two eggs and a stick of Sargento cheddar.

Dessert: My latest obsession – PB2!! Have you tried it? I tracked down a jar at GNC, but you can also buy it online. It’s basically powdered peanut butter with a lot less fat and calories than you would normally find in peanut butter. The ingredients are just roasted peanuts, sugar, salt, and since I bought the chocolate version, cocoa powder.

Nutritionally, it’s not the same as regular peanut butter at all – but I love peanut butter so this is great for satisfying my craving while still sticking to my calorie limits. To make, you mix 2 tbsp of the powder with 1 tbsp of water. The result is a thick, peanut-chocolatey paste. I topped it with 1/2 cup (4 oz) of fat free plain Greek yogurt. I also had a dark chocolate Adora disk – it’s a calcium supplement. I always see other bloggers eat them, so when my sister and I found a bag at Whole Foods last weekend we decided to try them. I’m not sure that I really need a calcium supplement, but they taste just like regular dark chocolate and come in at 30 calories. Yum!

Now…The Numbers:

Starting weight: 243

Last week: 167

This week: 166.5

Change: -.5

Total loss: 76.5

On being fat

I’ve been kicking around some thoughts about being fat.

Thoughts that make me feel vulnerable.

Thoughts that are hard to process, and even harder to write.

But that’s the point of the blog, right? To write through the discomfort. To share, perchance, to grow.

It’s well documented that the experience of being fat is not a pleasant one.

Doctors don’t want to treat fat people.

Employers don’t want to hire fat people.

I’ve often felt that anything I had to say, or just my being, was dismissed immediately because of my size.

It’s the feeling of being invisible.

Just look at any major news organization talking about the so-called “obesity epidemic” – what photo do they run with their story? Most likely, it’s a headless fatty.

How do these messages affect our society?

How did these messages affect me?

They left me scared – confirming the feeling that I was, in fact, being ignored and overlooked because of my weight.

And the photos, the images of rolls and cellulite without heads that are blasted on TVs across the world, left me without a voice.

The results of the non-existent, but extremely visible and media-friendly “obesity epidemic” is a shame-fest on fat people.

If you’ve read this blog for more than a few days, you know that I’m all about promoting the idea that you can, and should, love and accept your body at any size and weight.

This war on obesity, which is supposed to, I guess, get people to lose weight, is instead taking the experience of the fat person out of the conversation.

In my utopia, bodies are as they exist.

Doesn’t that sound more peaceful than a war on fat?

But I struggle with knowing these things and my lifestyle of actively losing weight.

I’m the body that news organizations talk about. When I see these stories, I don’t see headless fatties, I see me.

When I read stories about fat children being bullied, being discriminated against, being forced to diet, I mourn for my own childhood of similar experiences.

I’ve lost weight because I’ve rediscovered love and acceptance.

I’ve lost weight because I’ve reclaimed space for myself to exist and my body as being worthy of attention.

I’ve lost weight because I’ve stopped, and outright refused, to be at war with my body, no matter how many advertisements and magazines and news pundits tell me I should be.

Dieting is harmful and dangerous.

And I worry, a lot, that dieting is something I’m promoting with this blog.

Let me be clear here: Dieting is the devil.

The body you have now is yours for the rest of your life.

Please, don’t waste another second believing it is anything less than perfect and deserving of all the love you can give.

Fear to freedom

It’s hot.

Like, I’m having trouble thinking because it’s so hot.

So today, I’ll let someone else do the talking.

But first, a story.

From senior year in high school until the summer after I graduated college, I worked as a life guard. I worked in all different kinds of facilities, but mostly at pools in apartment complexes. It was the kind of job where, a lot of the time, my main function was just to talk to people.

One woman used to come every night right before I closed down the pool to swim laps, and then she would stay to talk with me while I folded up all the umbrellas, put away the kick boards and filled the pool with chlorine for the morning.

I remember feeling incredibly lost that summer, unsure of who I was, where I was going and what the future would hold, and a lot of those fears came out during our conversations.

On my last day at that pool, she invited me over for dinner.

I remember two things from that night.

One, we drank Gatorade from wine glasses.

Two, this passage she gave me. In moments of doubt, it continues to serve as my guide:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously
give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.

 – Marianne Williamson

All in a day’s eats – WIAW

Hi there!

Let’s talk food 🙂

I have a confession to make, I get stuck on certain foods and just want to eat them over and over and over again.

Oatmeal? Every day.

Zucchini? Three a week.

Bananas? Can’t imagine a world without them.

My penchant for wanting the same foods over and over has solved a few common challenges that people run into when starting to eat healthier – mainly price and time.

There’s a myth that choosing healthy foods costs more money and that cooking (especially for one) takes a lot of time, but this could not be further from the truth.

I change up what I eat from week to week, but within the week I eat the same meal for lunch every day and the same meal for dinner every day. I’m on strict budget with grocery shopping and have a crazy work schedule, but this method of meal planning has been a savior for time, money and my weight. Here’s why:

1. Meal planning saves money. Every Sunday I browse Pinterest and some other recipe sites for meal ideas. I make my shopping list on my iPhone and then go into the supermarket knowing exactly what I need. I always want to try new foods, and if let loose I would buy up the entire fruit and produce section, so having a plan helps me stick to my budget. Before I started cooking I used to waste so much food because it would go bad before I could eat it, but that never happens anymore.

2. Meal planning saves time. With my plan set, I can prep all my lunches and dinners on the weekend so they are grab-and-go ready for during the week. This has helped me break any dependency on frozen meals, convenience foods and it ensures that I’m never tempted to eat out. Sometimes I’ll make one big dish (like soup or chili or a casserole) and portion it out to easily reheat during the week but other times I’ll have a set protein (like a turkey burger, chicken sausages or shrimp) and a few different veggies that I know I can quickly throw together for quick and simple dinners.

Why am I talking about all of this? Because I’ve decided to participate in the blogging phenomenon What I ate Wednesday. Below is every single thing I ate on Tuesday. I get questions all the time about what a typical day of food looks like for me – so here it is!

Breakfast: Stove-top oatmeal (1/2 cup oats; 2 tbsp flax meal; 1 banana; 1-1/2 cups water; tons of cinnamon). A giant cup of coffee with a generous pour of unsweetened almond milk. I also had another coffee with soy milk mid-morning.

Lunch: 2 hard-boiled eggs; a container filled with broccoli, carrots and cucumbers; 1/4 cup hummus (homemade – so much cheaper!); 1 cheese stick; 1/2 oz raw almonds

Snack: 100 g of grapes; 30 g of avocado (Yes, I really do weigh everything. I would cry if my food scale broke)

Dinner: 2 chicken sausages; 1/2 zucchini; 10 asparagus

Dessert: 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt; 1oo g blueberries

It’s also…weigh-in Wednesday…so here we go:

The Numbers:

Starting weight: 243

Last week: 166.5

This week: 167

Change: +.5

Total loss: 76

Hike your heart out

The decision wasn’t IF I should go hiking this weekend…it was WHERE should I go hiking!

With the Ramapo Reservation, High Mountain Park Preserve and Harriman State Park all within a 20 minute drive of my apartment – I had some choosing to do.

On Saturday I reconnected with a friend from college to go to High Mountain Park – We set out on a trail and must have had a lot to talk about because we ended up coming out of the woods in another town and had to walk about 1.5 miles to my car on the roads.

The path wasn’t that challenging, but it was really rocky! There was a great view of New York City at one point, too.

On Sunday my plan was to take it a bit easier, because I was still sore from a session with my trainer on Saturday morning but once I got to the Ramapo Reservation it was clear I was going to be there for hours.

Usually I’m a bit hesitant to go hiking by myself because I don’t have the greatest sense of direction, but I’ve been going to the Reservation for years and feel pretty comfortable just getting lost. There are also always tons of friendly people around.

I choose a random path after getting to the upper lake and just explored for about 2 and a half hours!

I followed both hikes with froyo.

All the makings of a great weekend 🙂

Happy Monday!

Body movin’, body movin’

A Beastie Boys inspired title to kick off Friday ;)!

AND it’s been a while since I last talked about how I’m moving.

For one, I’ve stopped running. If you’re just catching up, I ran for the last time on May 6 in the Waldwick 5K on a shin that I was pretty sure was fractured (NOT at all over-dramatic). It wasn’t, but the orthopedist told me to rest for two weeks. After two weeks…my shin still hurt. I decided to continue doing everything else at that point except running.

So where am I now? My shin no longer hurts. For a while it was feeling weird, where it didn’t hurt but I was aware of it. Does that make any sense? Anyway, it didn’t feel normal, but now it does.

I’m still not running. There are a couple reasons:

1. My trainer doesn’t think it’s a good idea. He’s told me over and over again that it won’t help me lose weight and it’s probably too hard on my body right now and I finally believe him. While I was running, weight loss felt like a HUGE struggle. It was hard for me to balance what I was eating with what I was burning…because I had no idea (anyone want to buy me a Garmin??). Also, I was WAY hungrier when I ran. Sticking to a calorie limit now feels (dare I say it??) almost easy. 

2. I started to feel like running was getting in the way of other things. If I had a long (for me) run on the weekend, I wouldn’t also want to hike that day with a friend. I felt like I needed a LOT of rest to recover from even 3-mile runs. I love running, but I don’t want to turn down other activities because I have to run.

Source: iobad.com via Jodi on Pinterest

 

BUT, let me say this. Actually being able to run and completing FOUR (!!!) 5Ks hands down feels like my biggest accomplishment in my entire life. I could not run a mile in high school. I didn’t care about running a mile after high school. The fact that I was able to follow a running program (COUCH TO 5K – DO IT), stick with it, and LOVE it? AMAZING. I want to run again. I will run again. Just not now.

Source: lovetopedal.com via Jodi on Pinterest

 

In place of running, I’m walking a LOT. Walking is my first love and the main exercise I’ve done to get me to where I am now weight-loss wise.

I’m also incorporating a few days at the gym where I use the elliptical (ugh) and strength train with dumbbells and my own body weight.

I finally feel like I’m back to some sort of normal exercise routine after being injured, taking a lot of time to rest and then getting sick.

I’ve even scheduled a session with my trainer for Saturday morning to make sure my weekend starts with a big, healthy push.

 

 How are you going to sweat this weekend??

 

 

Body love reps

I had a great conversation with a friend yesterday.

We were both delighting in the way in which our lives our moving.

The feeling was surprising, to both of us, because of all the doubt and angst we’ve both faced that’s seemed overwhelming at times.

Becoming content, with anything in your life, works the same way.

But this is my blog, so I’m going to talk about how it works with loving your body.

Unhappiness, I believe, comes from wanting something other than what you have. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t want more or better than what you have, but it’s a lesson in approach.

I have to remind myself daily that I don’t want to lose weight. This is, after all, Jodi fat or not.

I want to love my body, which means I care for it in the best way I know how.

Movement that leaves me dripping with sweat and smiling.

Eating food that makes me glow from the inside out.

When I get caught up in the weight loss side, everything about me becomes focused on a number.

Not, I had a great time working out at the gym and smiled the whole way home.

Not, I made a breakfast, lunch and dinner with fresh, whole foods that were delicious to eat and gave me tons of energy.

These things get lost. Shadowed by the scale.

I was reading an interview with Julie Wyman on the blog Radical Hateloss when I realized just how much I had been feeling buried by the number.

Q: What message do you want to communicate most to other women?
A: What if the body you had right now were perfect?

It’s a thought that makes me grin from ear to ear.

The second I become motivated by body loathing, I’ve lost.

I could be doing all of the same things, but if it’s motivated by hating my body, it feels like an act of desperation to fit into a mold rather than an act of appreciation for this wonderful body gifted to me from the Universe.

My love for my body is not determined by how much I weigh, how fast I can run a mile or how much I can lift.

It never will be. And it was a lie if I thought it ever was.

I have to remind myself of these things all the time.

Every day I have to be grateful for my body. Body lovin’ reps, if you will 🙂

The thing is, I could talk about my eating habits all day. Go into excruciating detail about my work outs. Wax poetic about how much time is spent planning every single second of my day to make health the number one priority.

There are a million people and businesses out there that want to sell you on the idea that you need a diet plan, an exercise routine or even a lifestyle change (I’m looking at you, Weight Watchers) before you can feel like you are enough.

Don’t believe a word of it.

Start with the belief that you are enough. Replace every negative thought about your body with one of love and appreciation. The rest – the eating well, the exercise – will fall happily into place.

 

Now…The Numbers:

Starting weight: 243

Last week: 166.5

This week: 166.5

Change: 0

Total loss: 76.5

Out the window

This weekend, the laundry didn’t get done.

Dirty dishes are sitting in the sink.

I didn’t prep all my meals for the week.

I never made it to the gym.

Lunches were thrown together quickly.

Blueberries were eaten straight from the container.

I stayed out way too late, but saw views like this:

This weekend I escaped from the usual stress and responsibilities of daily life.

Right into the clouds.

And up into the mountains of Harriman State Park.

I have the tendency to not want to diverge from my usual path.

Sticking firm to a routine has gotten to where I am now.

Healthier, lighter.

When you set out to lose weight, you have to say “no” to a lot of things.

“No thanks, I’ll just have water.”

“No, I don’t want a piece of cake.”

“No, I’m going to stay in and cook dinner.”

“No, I have to get up early to work out.”

But because of all those “no’s,” I felt confident saying “yes” to everything this weekend.

I don’t worry anymore that I won’t be able to keep up with a night of walking around the city.

I don’t worry anymore that I won’t have the endurance to make it through a long hike in the woods.

I’ve taken on a lot more responsibilities as a result of my desire to get healthy, but it also means that I get to take on life, and it’s given me the confidence that I can handle wherever it goes.

 

” Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend. Non-being is the greatest joy.”  – Lao Tzu

 

 

A vision of success

My trainer and I had a moment a few weeks ago.

Maybe it didn’t stand out to him, but it will stay with me for a while.

Let me start with this: I hate that gyms are covered in mirrors. I know its good to see your form, but I hate watching myself work out. It’s not so much my own reflection that I mind, but having people watch me, watching myself just rubs me the wrong way. It makes me very self-conscious.

Anyway, it was nearing the end of our half-hour session and as I was lifting dumbbells he was asking me about my weight loss progress and telling me how much more weight he believed I should lose.

 

We talked about reaching 100 pounds lost. He said, in his thick Peruvian accent, “I think you’ll look great there.”

I said, “I can’t even imagine it,” and turned away from my reflection.

He got mad.

“C’mon, Jodi,” he scolded.

Maybe it doesn’t sound like a scolding, but after almost a year of twice weekly visits, he needs few words to get his point across.

And his point was: I should be imaging it.

Every day I should spend time envisioning my goals, whether weight loss or otherwise.

 

A few weeks ago, I watched a documentary about Lindsey Vonn called “In the Moment.” Vonn is a professional skier with four World Cup championships. There’s a moment right before every race where Vonn closes her eyes and goes through the course in her mind. She has a vision of each curve, every turn, jump and movement that she’s about to take.

That’s where she wins or loses the race.

And it’s a lesson that can be applied to anything.

Take a moment. Slow down. Focus. See yourself successful in whatever way that means to you.

 

With whatever goal you are trying to reach, there are going to be bumps in the road getting there. Positive thinking will get you through. See yourself winning. See yourself overcoming challenges. See yourself making your wildest dreams come true. See yourself as someone who has lost 100 pounds.

It will happen. It is possible.

The more I sink into my weight loss philosophy, the more I see how the strategies I’ve used to change my weight can be used to change everything in my life.

And it starts with getting your head in the right place.

“Be careful what you water your dreams with. Water them with worry and fear and you will produce weeds that choke the life from your dream. Water them with optimism and solutions and you will cultivate success. Always be on the lookout for ways to turn a problem into an opportunity for success. Always be on the lookout for ways to nurture your dream.” – Lao Tzu

—–

Now…The Numbers:

Starting weight: 243

Last week: 167.5

This week: 166.5

Change: -1

Total loss: 76.5