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Groupon Salvation?

I woke up yesterday to the ping of my phone as another e-mail hit my inbox. I decided that this happens a bit too frequently and perhaps the fifteen or so e-mails I get every morning are perhaps less than helpful when I'm trying to sleep. Being as distractible as I am, I ended up poring through the endless list of groupons and living social deals available. And then I stumbled across one of those micro-gyms that does cross fit and boot camps. 
I don't know about you but I think of these gyms as torture chambers for already skinny people who want to up their already rigorous exercise regimen. But something clicked in my head when I was reading over one of them. I could do this. I could be one of those people. 
I think I'm willing to accept that I like food. I am also willing to accept that I don't want to keep records of what's in my food. So if I am going to remain unsatisfied with how my body looks and feels, I'm going to have to make up for my eating somehow. A…

Medical Grade Dieting

I've been kind of up and down lately with the dieting thing. I've been thinking about how long I've been at this whole trek to reach a goal weight and how I'm still in the same place I've been for years and years. So the time has come where I need to either accept that this is how much I'm going to weight and this is how I'm going to feel both in my body and about my body, or I'm going to fix it. 
One of my neighbors lost 80 pounds on medifast. She's a really cool lady, very inspirational. And her story really inspires. She was around 200 pounds - like me - and had pretty much given up on herself. She agreed to follow the plan for one month and 7 months later she'd reached her goal weight and hasn't looked back. 
This sounded so familiar and awfully appealing so I decided to do some research. I so badly want to find the easy and real solution to my weight problem and I was so hoping that perhaps all the apprehension I"d felt about the who…

Water Power

It's been three weeks since my juice cleanse and I'm still feeling successful. I'm down about 8 pounds. It's been going so well and I've been contemplating some of the things that are making the difference this time.

So far I've talked about being gluten free. I think that cutting out gluten has been a good move for me. I keep flubbing and having it accidentally (apparently rice crackers still have wheat in them sometimes and french fries come battered) so I'm not really sure if I've abstained enough to notice a difference. What has been good is all of the foods I avoid because they have gluten. Yesterday we ended our camping trip at Mo's in Lincoln City. There were maybe three things on the menu that weren't battered and fried. I had hoped to have a cup of clam chowder and even that had flour in it. All that was left was salads or fish tacos. These also happened to be the healthiest things on the menu. But enough about the gluten free stuff!
Th…

Gluten Free Day 12

First I want to say thank you to my readers who still follow this blog. I've been keeping it for a little over three years now, and while it does go neglected at times, I'm making an effort to be more diligent about posting again. 
Next I must reel from my previous post. After all of my whining I weighed myself this morning and found myself 6 pounds down from when I weighed myself Saturday morning. This is a different story than what I had been so frustrated about.
This does not let me off the hook however. Just because the scale is down doesn't mean my work is done. A contraire! Glancing through the onslaught of recent facebook pictures does me no favors. I want to look hot in a bathing suit before I die. I have many more pounds to go.  
Now onward!
I've been having some deep philosophical thoughts about this whole gluten free thing since I started. One of the things I've noticed is that I file away the things I will eat when I've decided not to stay gluten free. …

Gluten Free Day 10

It's been 10 days since I started my juice cleanse and have been gluten free. Thursday I drove with Charlotte out to the beach for my delightful friend Bri's birthday beach weekend. I nearly cried for having to leave earlier than I wanted to for work. I managed to eat pretty healthy and I avoided gluten too until Friday morning. My friend Caitlin made the most amazing strata for breakfast. Faced with the choice between strata and.... well nothing, I chose to have a small piece. It was pretty worth it...until I saw pictures of my my wide butt running down the beach in stretch pants, rolls of my belly protruding under my tank top between the elastic bands of my belt and my sports bra. Images that had me nearly sick with disgust at my own appearance. I don't blame the strata. The strata was not the culprit. So what is?
When I got home and weighed myself I wasn't surprised to see that the scale was moving up instead of down. I figured I'd gain some back from what I lost…

Post Cleanse Day 3

I made it through the weekend post juice cleanse and I think I've learned a few things. For the farmers markets I took a bunch of fresh cut veggies to snack on all day, some raw nuts, and a couple other snacks as well as several bottles of water. I also bought a few more juices to kind of help maintain some of the nutrition I was getting.

I'm finding that one of the biggest things after the cleanse is that meals are kind of obsolete. I don't really feel hungry and and I don't really feel full if I just eat good/fresh/raw food pretty much constantly and drink lots of water. This seems to be enough for most of the day.

Saturday I started the day with the hazelnut milk, date and cinnamon juice I had saved from the day before. I had some goat cheese with my cucumbers and it didn't seem to bother my stomach at all. So goat dairy is cleared for consumption! For dinner we went to Por Que No where I knew I'd be okay because you actually have to try to eat gluten there …

Juice Cleanse Day 3

Got up this morning and waited awhile to drink my first replacement juice. Switching was a good decision! Also, I wasn't hungry. Weighed myself. I'm down 5 lbs from the first day.
At my voice lesson I felt a sense of technical consistency and skill I haven't felt for a long time. I'm guessing its because I'm hydrated, but also because I started learning some basic French with duolingo. Even my voice teacher noticed the difference.
I felt pretty good through the afternoon. I knew I was going to be out and about so I packed a cooler with all but one of my juices for the day and a couple of bottles with water in case I couldn't refill them somewhere. 
After taking the cats to the vet I went to my parents to spend time with Charlotte. I ate a couple of strawberries. I feel like strawberries are always disappointing because I always think of the hoods I get at the farmers market or from u-pick places. Then we headed to five guys for dinner. I did pretty well. I ate…

Juice Cleanse Day 2 Part 2

I read on the website and confirmed with the ladies at the shop that it's okay to eat some raw foods during the cleanse. I've been popping raw almonds all day and had a couple slices of apple with Charlotte around lunch. So far I have yet to feel hungry. However I do keep feeling compulsions to eat. I got a container of pasta salad for Paul and Charlotte to eat while I'm doing my cleanse and I would be lying if I said I didn't have a couple bites. This does not bode well for my future plans to be gluten free...

Right now I'm working on my water after having finished my third juice of the day. I'm kind of impressed with how much water I drink without much problem. When I've done weight watchers before I found myself feeling sick at the thought of having to drink so much water every day. This seems to be okay though.

So far I'm learning some very key things about my eating habits.

First, McLoughlin Blvd. needs to be off limits unless there's someplace…

Juice Cleanse Day 2 Part 1

I called Portland juice press this morning after I attempted to choke down my bottle of cilantro juice. Actually It has several things in it but that's all I could taste. They were super nice and said I could trade it and a couple others for new juice. I tried to get juices that still had some good vegetables in them. I think this will make the next day and a half go much more smoothly.

Juice Cleanse Day 1 Part 2

2:20pm. Finished second juice and second water. Driving by a honey baked ham. Nothing sounds more amazing than ham.
3:00 caved and ate a white nectarine. I figure fresh fruit can't hurt too much
7:00 drink the second to last juice of the day. Think I'm going to vomit so I eat a bunch of raw almonds. It seems to work. Paul rubs my neck to help with the caffeine withdrawal headache.
9:20 Can tell the detox is starting to take effect. Have to pee as often as I did when I was pregnant! Going to bed.

Juice Cleanse Day 1 Part 1

A few weeks ago at the Nike campus market my booth happened to be next to the Portland Juice Press booth. They were super nice and let me take home some of their leftover juice. I also got to sample several flavors. Lemon ginger honey is my favorite.
Today I start my 3 day juice cleanse. They have a set of six juices that they suggest doing in a certain order. You drink six a day and a bottle of water between each one. Lemon ginger honey isn't part of the cleanse :(

Here are some reasons I decided to go for this:

I watched Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead probably over a year ago and I've been intending to buy a juicer so I could do a juice cleanse at home. Since I fail at buying a juicer, this seemed easier. Instead of getting closer to my pre-pregnancy weight I'm actually starting to gain weight. This should put a big giant halt to that!I had a chinook book coupon that got me 3 days for the price of 2. They also threw in an industry discount (I think..?) because it ended up bei…

Farmer's Market Bounty

Last weekend I started a new job working for Briar Rose Creamery in their farmers market booth. I really enjoyed being outside, mingling with people and selling goat cheese!

One of the concerns many people had about chèvre was that it was high in fat and calories. I remembered when I did weight watchers I was able to eat goat cheese pretty often without much guilt. So I thought I'd look up the nutrition information. Goat Cheese Nutrition Information This link has nutrition information for 1oz. of fresh goat cheese. The containers we sell have 4 oz of cheese in them. So an entire container of cheese has roughly 400 calories and 24g of protein. I think that's pretty awesome!

After the weekend I went home with a bunch of fresh goat cheese and all sorts of green things. Markets offer lots of great veggies and artisan foods, but sometimes it can be daunting trying to figure out how to cook it in tastey ways. This being my first week with a fridge full of goat cheese I wanted to tr…

Power Muffins

Breakfast is a tricky meal, at least for me. I get up in the morning and manage to limit most of my routine to the upstairs. When I finally make it downstairs I usually have about 10 minutes left before I need to dash out the door. It seems the options for a fast healthy breakfast are pretty limited even without a 10 minute time limit.

One of the things I've been doing is to eat yogurt. I'm really weird about yogurt though. I eat it in phases and when I'm not in a phase I feel like I have to force-feed myself what's left. I'm also kind of picky. My favorite yogurt is the Brown Cow Maple or Blueberry greek yogurt. It has lots of protein and it's really creamy and rich.

Another thing I do is to make non-instant oatmeal. I'm not a fan of the texture and the chemical flavor of the sludge that comes in the little brown paper packets. My doctor told me the chunkier the oatmeal grain the better the benefits. I had been eating steel-cut oats, but they take at least…

Why Yes I'd Like Fries With That

Charlotte will be 2 in June. This means that I have been trying for almost 2 years to shed the 40 pounds I gained in pregnancy. I'm halfway there, but these last 20 pounds are a bitch to lose.

So far I've adjusted my diet toward more whole grain and power types of foods like chia seeds, local honey, fruits and vegetables, and healthy oils like coconut and safflower oil. My kitchen pantry is like a showcase of Trader Joes, New Seasons and Bob's Red Mill. I've also been pretty good about going to yoga once a week. But this is obviously inadequate.

I know this isn't particularly profound but I've been realizing that your body is the physical appearance of what you do to take care of it. Exercise tones and shapes it. Healthy foods make it glow. Stress wears it out. Trans-fats make it flubby. Throw in a late-night visit to McDonalds and more than a few trips to starbucks (why would I want it nonfat and sugar free? I don't want to taste the coffee!), a not-so-rec…

Highs and Lows

I was debating about writing about todays yoga experience, first because I know at some point this is going to sound like the same thing over and over again, and second because I had a bad yoga day and I've been so positive about yoga I kind of wanted to just pretend it didn't happen and move on with life. But I've decided to go ahead and talk about it because this path to outer skinniness is about being honest about the journey. Being fat is hard. Getting skinny is hard. Staying skinny, also hard.

I think there's this barrier that we create mentally towards each other. Fat people assume skinny people don't know how hard it is to get to be like them. We assume skinny people couldn't possibly have the same insecurities and body issues we have. Skinny people assume fat people are lazy or just not trying hard enough. I'm making rather broad generalities, but you know what I mean.

The truth is we all have a lot more in common than we have differences and if I d…

Warrior 3 FTW

This yoga stuff is starting to really grow on me. Tonight I made it to my third class with the same instructor at 24 hour. I decided to put my mat about halfway back the room right next to the window. There was a little patch of mirror so I could see myself but not the whole time.

I was really surprised at how much I've progressed in such a short time. I think I'm starting to understand the flow of the movement which really helps. I also know where I'm supposed to end up when she calls out a pose like warrior 1, 2, or 3, or low versus high lunge. I was able to actually go into a full warrior 3 pose with my right leg as a base! I held it for probably a good 10 seconds before I started to lose my balance and had to catch myself but I was pretty proud of myself for getting my leg in a straight line behind me.

Then she had us try standing split pose. I'll take my victory with warrior 3 thank you very much!


I still haven't lost any weight, but I am really feeling good a…

New Experiences

Last night I had planned to go to yoga at 24 hour fitness at 5:30. Since I had a bit of time between teaching and my class I decided to drive to the high school to catch up on some work. By the time I was satisfied with what I'd accomplished it was 5:30 already. In other words, I was going to miss my yoga class.

I figured I could just go to Zumba at 6:30 instead but it occurred to me that I didn't have my tennis shoes. I need a gym bag for my car that I keep all of these things in. *noted* So I decided to use the power of smart phones and find another drop in yoga class.

I must say, there are far more yoga studios than I expected in Portland. They aren't quite as frequent as Starbucks, but there's at least 3 in every neighborhood. Anyway, I found a drop in class that was reasonably priced so I made my way to the studio.

I ended up going to The Bhaktishop Yoga Center on 26th and Division. When I first got there, the door was locked, but I could tell there were people be…

Yoga and Nature

Apparently I need to earn 4.5 graduate level credits to renew my teaching license. This could have been done to some staggered expense if I'd thought about this about two years ago. But now it's due in May. Lucky (?) for me there is an entire program through PSU for continuing education that offers these credits for $55 each. The only catch is the course fee. These are typically in the $300-500 range. Bummer. I skimmed through the course catalog and stumbled across a class that was only $150. This I can figure out. 
So now I'm registered for a class called "Psychological Elements of Global Citizenship". The last time I took an online class it was for my cluster courses that were my alternative to general education classes. I took gender studies. It was basically an exercise in arguing with people who all agree with each other to be more liberal. Just because someone "identifies" as "male" doesn't mean he has an anger problem. It was pointl…

Yo Yo Exercising

Everyone, I'm sure, has different things that they give up at one point or another - an instrument, a sport, hobbies and activities - expecting that they'll get around to doing it again someday. At some point we face reality and decide that we'll probably never do said thing again but it was nice to have done it and boy don't we wish we had the time/skill/energy to get back into it? Then there's the things you try, aren't much good at and even hate, and then you throw in the towel fully expecting never to do it again.

For me these are running and yoga. I've always had a very strange love/hate relationship with running. I'd love to be able to run.  But running hates me and my joints/lungs/feet. (I promise not to use any more slashes now). I've taken up running - specifically running, not running as a result of doing another sport - probably about three times now. I've decided to quit and not try again all three times. I'm sure it will surface…

Sugar Detox

I have run into the great big wall of illness. I'm pretty impressed with myself though. I've managed to teach in not one, but three public schools without getting sick yet. I'm doing the best I can to kick what has already started though. Emergen-C and sleep!

So far I've been doing okay with trying to eat more healthfully. I bought a meat pack from New Seasons. It's all meat that's been raised in ethical and sustainable ways and the best part is that the big packs end up being rather affordable if you can buy all your meat for the month at once. I think it worked out to around $3 a pound for 20 pounds of different meats. Monday I made beef and pork sausage meatballs with pasta and then I used the extra meatballs tonight to make my Oma's recipe for meatball soup. The meatballs were really good in the soup.

In terms of the ethical eating I feel like I've been doing just okay. I'm not doing as well as I could be though. Obviously if I'm buying meat…

Sorry for Being Crunchy

I went to New Seasons today to get some butter oil and fermented cod liver oil supplements to perhaps try to heal the cavities that have started forming on Charlotte's teeth. I was talking to the lady that works in the section and I found myself making all sorts of excuses for myself and apologizing. I caught myself apologizing again yesterday to the guy working at Lush when I started to explain how I wash my face and hair. He was trying to sell me skin products. I just wanted a mask made of fresh ingredients since I didn't have the fortitude to go make one myself.

I find that with this whole "enlightened" way of living, I feel the need to excuse myself from mainstream ways of doing things. I've been washing my hair with baking soda and unfiltered apple cider vinegar since last summer. People think it's weird. My hair has never felt so naturally healthy. Now with this diet stuff I'm starting to be one of those people that Portlandia makes fun of. Literall…

Adventures in Vegan

Something about the movies I mentioned in my last post (Hungry for Change, Vegucated) is just really sticking with me. Every time I eat a meal I have images in my head from those movies and I feel like my choice to eat certain things is my choice to help or hurt myself and the planet. When you put that kind of weight on your diet, it definitely helps to make more responsible choices.

If you're interested in reading about it here are some links about animal based food production that might have you thinking a bit more about whether meat is really so necessary:


NY Times Article About Environmental Costs of Meat Production

Portland Mercury Article about Mark Bittman

A Vegan Website with Information on Animal Agriculture Costs

A Scientific Journal Article About Animal Agriculture Issues

Links for Sustainable Eating Resources (I shall be pondering these myself)

I just googled "environmental impact of animal agriculture" and got a whole bunch of legitimate hits with information. T…