Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Week #22: Move It, Love It

I am sitting down to post this entry after having done a session of yoga at work. I think it's fitting that I'm about to talk about enjoying your activity while I'm blissed out from my own.

Does this look like a person who liked to exercise? I can assure you: NO.

I mentioned in this morning's meeting that I used to be the person who never exercised. Hated it, in fact. I got my mom to write me a note to get me out of running the mile in gym class when I was in high school.

All that's changed now. I exercise regularly. I've run five marathons. I'm studying exercise science and considering getting certified to teach fitness classes! How the heck did that all happen?!?

I will admit that in the beginning I got sweaty simply to burn calories. Riding a stationary bike? BO-RING. But I did it. Aerobics videos? Oh Jane Fonda, you scamp, I did a few of those too, even though I hated it and felt uncoordinated.

But then a coworker challenged me to run a 5K. And I decided that since I was paying for a gym membership, I might try some of the group fitness classes - and wouldn't you know, I found stuff I liked!

Here's a list of the things I have done in the past month or so: running, indoor cycling (spinning), boot camp, Pilates, yoga, weight lifting, and the 5 DVD set that we're selling in the WW meeting rooms right now.

And here's one thing I've tried but you will likely never see me do again: ZUMBA. I'm sorry. I know, the collective tsking is deafening, but Zumba and I (or more specifically "my hips") just don't get along. And since I don't enjoy taking a class where I feel like an uncoordinated fool, I have determined it is Decidedly Not For Me.

So if you look at my list and swear you'd never run unless you were being chased by someone wielding a weapon, that's OK! You'll find something else. And judging by the popularity of Zumba, that's probably what it'll be, and you and I can wave at each other while we pass each other on the way to our own favorite activities.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Week #21: Spice It Up!

Flavor is a big thing with me. I am not a fan of eating bland food. Simply put, I don't get a lot of food to eat on any given day, so I want it all to be really tasty! It's become such a thing around my house, that my husband will randomly shout "FLAVOR!" when I'm cooking or when we're discussing food. He knows it's that vital.

This past week's issue of Weight Watchers Weekly did such a great job of listing some spices that are a bit off the beaten track. For example, epazote? Have you ever heard of that, or better yet, tried it? I'm sure it's possible to find it somewhere locally, but my favorite online spice store Penzey's happens to carry it.

Hmm. Reading their description of it, it sounds like an ingredient that might come in handy around these parts. Ahem.

In completely unrelated news, a Weight Watchers coworker recently shared a note she got from a member right after Mother's Day. I think it's good for a chuckle!

To whom it may concern:

Please excuse my Mom, Fran, from watching what she eats for just this week. I invited her to my home for Mother's Day dinner, where I prepared Chicken Marsala, Chicken Piccatta, Chicken Frances, Roasted Red Potatoes with Garlic & Rosemary, Broccoli with Garlic, Chocolate Pudding Pie, Peanut Butter Pie, and Bread Pudding. I forced her to eat more than she wanted to eat.

Thank you...David.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Week #20: Outsmart the Supermarket

Honestly, that's how it feels sometimes, right?

I take grocery shopping very seriously! It's really important to me to get the right foods on hand and know that a healthy meal is waiting for me at every turn. For me this means a lot of thought, planning, and list-making. For you, who may not be as obsessive and detail-oriented as I am, maybe you can get away with less effort.

Regardless of the level of meal planning you do before you hit the store, here are some guidelines you might want to consider:

1. NEVER GO HUNGRY. Seriously, I mean it. Things will just jump into your cart if you shop while hungry. True story.

2. Know what you need to get. For me this means a detailed list, and if I'm really on the ball, the list is in the order I walk through the store. But it could also just mean making sure you have a pantry and refrigerator full of healthy staples that can magically be transformed into a healthy meal based on your tastes and cravings on any given day.

3. Calculate before you buy. So many of us carry smartphones, so it's easy to use either of the Weight Watcher apps to figure out a food's PointsPlus value before it goes into the shopping basket. Don't find out AFTER you eat it that it really wasn't worth it.

4. NEVER GO HUNGRY. I mean it, it bears repeating. This can be my biggest downfall, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Weeks #18-19: Kindness & Motivation

The topic on being your own best friend left me a little speechless, and so I didn't have any thoughts to present on the week before last's topic. I'm sure this is in part due to the fact that I am one to speak to myself in a way that might make you blush.

So another week has passed, a week in which we talked about staying motivated. When I look at the progression of topics, it strikes me that somebody back at corporate headquarters in New York knows what they're doing! I mean, if I've just given myself a mental lashing over eating too many cookies, what sort of shape am I going to be in mentally? Am I really going to be motivated to hit the gym, shop for healthy groceries and say no to ordering dessert?

At this morning's meeting, a member shared that she managed to get out of the death spiral of unhealthy behaviors and negative talk by turning to her support team. Those are the people in her life who will tell it to her straight. Now, that can mean stuff like tough love, but also the reassurances that no, you're not a freak, you're not a loser, and you'll TOTALLY get back on track. Do you have a support team? If not, where can you find one? Could it be people you know in person, or would an online team (Weight Watchers message boards, for example) work? Maybe both!

Once you've developed Team You, you'll find it's probably easier to keep a positive state of mind. And when you're happy about this process (or about things in general), you're probably going to be more effective and productive.

So what's your goal? Have you pictured yourself at it? How it will feel? Won't it be great? With the tools you have at your disposal, and your support team - it's a matter of WHEN, not IF.