Walk this way

Despite the heat here in New Jersey, my weekend included lots of walking!

On Saturday I decided to break up exercising into short trips around my ‘hood. I’m lucky to live right off a main street and so was able to get my errands done while working up a sweat. Walking to Dunkin’ Donuts for iced coffee, the post office to mail my rent check, and the library to get some new chick-lit added up to about an hour of walking, but were all done in 10-minute increments – Success!

I ended up not not really liking the books I checked out though. Maybe I’m over chick-lit? I’m a quarter of the way into both and neither has really grabbed me.

On Sunday I was really craving a trip to the park, so I put on my headphones and listened to the NPR: TED Radio Hour podcast on “Food Matters” while getting in a 3-mile walk on the mostly shaded path of the Wild Duck Pond. Even though it was relatively early in the day, I still ended up getting pretty sweaty.

Speaking of podcasts – they are a totally new discovery for me! I guess I always knew they existed, but didn’t realize how easily I could get them on my iPhone. I’m obsessed! I’ve been listening to NPR: TED Radio Hour casts, Freakonomics Radio and Here’s the Thing with Alec Baldwin – Loving them all!

What are your favorites?? I need recommendations!

I also got busy in the kitchen this weekend. My creations began with making coffee ice cubes –  so simple yet so effective. I’m not sure that my upstairs neighbor appreciated the goodness of a homemade frappuccino (coffee ice cubes + chocolate protein powder + almond milk) at 7:30 a.m. on a Sunday, but I was very grateful that my Magic Bullet could grind up those suckers, albeit loudly.

The cooking continued with Zucchini Quinoa Lasagna from Peas and Thank You. I used real cheese and beef broth, so it’s not vegan – but it’s really tasty! I’ll have pictures of my version on Wednesday, but for now feast your eyes on a much prettier lasagna courtesy of Mama Pea, and definitely not taken with an iPhone camera.

Source: peasandthankyou.com via Jodi on Pinterest

I’ve been dying to break into the jar of coconut oil I bought last week and Chocolate-Covered Katie’s three-ingredient chocolate was just the recipe to try for dessert.

To make the chocolate bar, you just mix together coconut oil, agave and unsweetened cocoa powder and then stick it in the freezer. I still can’t believe it worked. I guess it’s similar to a magic shell? I can’t wait to try different flavor combinations and mix-ins. This is some seriously fun chocolate.

 

I capped off my Sunday night with another walk. The temperature outside finally dropped below 90 degrees as the sun was setting…and it was actually cooler outside than in my apartment, so I laced up my sneakers for a 2-mile loop around my complex.

At the end of my street there is a giant Nabisco factory that always looks so epic as the sun is setting behind it. Not to mention that it coats all of Fair Lawn with the smell of fresh-baked cookies on the regular.

The town I grew up in was so hilly and there were no sidewalks, so I feel like I really appreciate the great location of my apartment now.

It may sound cheesy, but walking is a great way to interact with a new place on a really intimate level. You get to see a lot of things you might miss if you were driving.

There are so many areas of my life that getting healthy has affected in a really positive way – and the desire to simply take walks, instead of just sitting around in front of the TV on a hot day, is definitely up high on the list.

Just wanted to share 🙂

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

 

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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

All the small things

I don’t have much time to write – the weekend kind of got away from me. But I did want to share some of the healthy things I’ve been up to:

1. First, an injury update. Be prepared to be disappointed. I sure am. My shin…still hurts. I’m going to give it some more rest from running and instead start walking longer distances again. I missed my park so much the last two weeks. I went back for a slow 4-mile walk on Saturday and just let my mind wander while I strolled along the river. It was glorious. I stretched half-way through and again at the end and put on my compression sleeves after and my legs seem to be doing ok.

This is not from the park. Or this weekend. But the bunny is cute.

2. My eating has been really natural and on point since I ditched daily weigh-ins. I get a little paranoid sometimes that I’m eating too much, but I’m trusting my hunger, my calorie counting and my body instead of a number. It feels good. I don’t plan to count calories forever, so I know this is a step in the right direction. Overall I think a lot less about my weight and instead think about how I’m feeling. Major win. Also, I’ve been way more moderate about my diet and including more treats. Usually desert for me is fruit, but I’ve been eating things like popcorn and froyo more regularly. Living on the edge, ya’ll.

A sample of my meals 80 percent of the time. Eggs, veggies, fruit.

...And 20 percent froyo. Addicted.

3. Before I started losing weight, I was really lazy. And not just in the no-exercise way. My whole life was lazy. I would spend weekends watching TV and laying around. I never cooked or cleaned. My lifestyle contributed a lot to my weight gain. Now…I’m always doing something. Whether it’s waking up early to go to the gym, grocery shopping, cleaning around my apartment – I move in small ways a lot more. I was thinking a lot about this as I was running around doing errands this weekend. Yes, I go to to the gym, which I never used to do, but I also think it’s small things that all fall under the category of “self care” that make a big difference, too. Case in point: Today I woke up around 7 a.m., cooked breakfast…pre-weight loss I probably would have met some friends at a diner. After, I went to the grocery store where I spent most of my time wandering around the produce section…before I would have gone right to the freezer to grab frozen meals. After food shopping, I hauled my laundry off to the laundry mat, came home and folded and put away all my clothes…pre-lifestyle change the clothes probably would have sat in the laundry basket for days. Then I went shopping for shoes…returned home and prepped some meals for the week. There’s just a lot more action in my day-to-day life that was never there before. Obviously these little things add up calorie-wise, but they also make a difference in my happiness. Going to bed knowing I have a healthy lunch prepared for the next day, a clean kitchen and clean room just make me feel so damn good.  Small, simple changes, folks.

Reading while my clothes are washed

Cutting up melon for snacking during the week

4. My new favorite blog: Medicinal Marzipan: Body Image + Authentic Living. The further into the archives I go, the more I fall in love. Each post is a gem, and she links out to some truly inspiring reading as well. I can’t get enough.

5. I’ve been having some great conversations with friends and family lately. Opening up about my life in writing (both in this blog and private journaling) has given me courage to open a lot more to the people in my life and for that I’m truly grateful. It seems like everywhere I turn a friend or a stranger is there to offer support. I’m really overwhelmed a lot of the time by how many people offer kind words. I guess when I started losing weight, I expected a lot of judgement and backlash, of which I did get some, but overall it’s been a really positive thing. I used to not react so well to compliments, but I’m getting better at it. Because of my job, I interact with a ton of people, some who I see every week and some who I only see once a month or once every few months, so my weight loss is constantly being pointed out. It used to give me a lot of anxiety when other people commented, but now I’m taking it with a smile. Progress.

AND…Happy Birthday to my sister!! My biggest cheerleader and motivator and guide in life. I love you 🙂

Thoughts become things. Choose good ones. Happy Monday!

Big Rock Candy Mountain

Why yes, the title of this post is both a metaphor for my weekend and an allusion to one of my favorite childhood movies.

It’s been a sugary weekend, which has, unfortunately, not left me feeling very sweet.

To give you an idea of my indulgence, froyo replaced two of my meals, and was eaten once as a dessert. In two days. There was also cake at some point.

I feel a little queasy thinking about it now.

And as much as I hate saying this, I’m not looking forward to publishing the numbers from The Scale on Wednesday.

It was a tough weekend. The urge to binge eat stayed with me up until last night.

But today, there is hope. In the form of a fridge stocked full with healthy food.

Last night I was up until 11:30 p.m. cooking a week’s worth of healthy breakfasts and lunches. After, I felt better. I felt in control again.

If anything, this weekend served as a reminder that having sugar just increases, instead of satisfies, the craving for sugar.

This weekend also reinforced that the food choices I make affect much more than my weight. I eat the way I do because it makes me feel good. Inside and out.

This thing that I’m doing, the way that I’m living my life, it’s full of trial and error. There will be hiccups and slip ups and bad weekends. I don’t think I’ll ever claim to have beaten binge eating. I’ve come a long way and made a lot of progress, but I’m by no means free of it.

The difference now is that I’m willing to put in the work. I can sit with my emotions and be uncomfortable instead of numbing what I’m feeling with food.

The reward is that I get to live my life consciously and purposely. Worth the fight every time.

 

 

 

Put happy first

Happy Monday!

It just dawned on me that I’ll be working a full week for the first time in a month. Time to expand my coffee budget.

It’s easy to forget that happiness, like weight loss, takes work. And like weight loss, happiness itself is not a goal, but there are goals I can set that will make happiness a more likely reality.

Before I really started examining my life, I thought things like partying, eating crappy foods and watching hours and hours of TV made me happy.

I was wrong.

For me, it’s about the little everyday things, like making my bed and having a clean kitchen, that truly contribute to my happiness.

Source: Uploaded by user via Hannah on Pinterest

Weight loss has happened because I actively work at being happy. Not the other way around. And, sorry folks, it never will be the other way around.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that things like cooking myself healthy meals and working out everyday mattered more in the way of feeling fulfilled personally.

Source: a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net via Seema on Pinterest

The truth is, I would continue these habits regardless of whether I ever lost another pound. It’s this mindset that gets me through the frustrating plateaus and weight loss stalls.

Because for me, getting to a place of happy has always been more important than getting to a certain number on the scale.