Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Sunday, May 23, 2010
I don't recall ever actually trying beets as a child and yet, at the mere mention of them, my first thought was always, ewe. Until recently that is. I spent a wonderful afternoon visiting my girlfriend, Jen and her wonderful fiance, Arlo. Somehow, beets came up and Arlo was very excited about these pickled beets that had been given to him as a gift...."want to try he asks". Sure, why not, I'll usually try anything at least once. As he goes off to find the jar and bring me back a fork, Jen informs me that she thinks beets taste like dirt. Just what you want to hear before taking a bite of a pickled beet! Haha. Much to my surprise, I really enjoyed the beet, I even had a second and possibly a third! It had a great, earthy yet somehow, sweet taste to them. He then began to tell me that he roasts them with a little olive oil and just how wonderful they taste. I admit, I promptly went to the grocery store and bought a couple of beets. Why not, at this point, I was curious. I'd always read they were very healthy for you and I"m always looking for new healthy, exciting ways to cook.
After getting home from the grocery store, the beets promptly went into the fridge, after a momentary hesitation, are they suppose to go in the fridge? Who knows. But into the crisper drawer they went for the evening and were promptly forgotten. Several days later I came upon them by accident and decided to throw them in the oven and give them a try. Unfortunately, I didn't google just HOW to roast beets before attempting to do so and being impatient, I didn't let them cook long enough. Out they came and although the little bit that I had was very good, I hadn't let them cook enough.
As Sunday is my shopping day, I picked up some beets while I was there and this time, googled "how to cook beets in the oven" and gave it another go. Round two, fabulous! This time they were cooked all the way through, the skin peeled right off and they tasted wonderful. Also, not only did I cook the beets, but the beet greens! I mixed them in with some marinara sauce and it was just Delicious!
I suggest you check out this site and give the beets a try!
Will also throw in here that I have also become a lima bean convert after recently trying a fabulous lima bean, asparagus, pistachio nut salad at a party. The fresh/frozen lima beans definitely don't compare to those in a can, which is all I remember trying as a kid!
Monday, May 17, 2010
Met up with CCJ Tuesday night for a great 6 mile run and did an awesome 8 mile run Thursday evening, all on my lonesome! Thank goodness I made it to 8 miles! Of course, this was after I shared the fabulous peanut butter ripple cheesecake with a friend at lunch. I needed the run after that!
Thank goodness I worked out Friday morning because I enjoyed some mediocre steak quesadillas and wings for dinner at Happy Hour! Hopefully I worked some of that off doing spin Saturday morning CCJ too!
Less than 30 days until the Baltimore 10 Miler! I'm excited and nervous all at the same time.
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Over the weekend, I was reading a runner magazine passed along to me by a friend. In it, was an article stating it's actually healthier for your body to run the shorter distances than it is to run the marathons. I found myself very happy to read this article, thinking it gives me a good reason to keep running the shorter races and not focus on what I picture to be my next goal. Yet, sitting in traffic today, I found myself behind a vehicle that had one of those 26.2 stickers on it. I sat there staring at that sticker and thinking that I wanted one. I want to be able to say I ran a marathon. If only once, I want to be able to say I did it.
I ordered their Grilled Jumbo Shrimp Salad Lunch Combo. The salad consisted of marinated shrimp, asparagus, arugula, tomatoes and a balsamic vinaigrette. Along with the salad, I chose a cup of their chicken tortilla soup. Both were delicious and if it weren't for the large amount of tortilla strips in the soup (I only ate half!), I wouldn't even have considered being worried about the calorie intake of the meal.
I am happy to say that Houlihan's has their nutritional information posted on their website. However, I am not happy about what I found. Imagine my shock when I realized it wasn't the calories that I needed to be concerned about, but the amount of sodium in my meal.
Currently, the recommended intake of sodium a day is 2,400 milligrams. However, we typically range between 3,000 - 5,000 milligrams of sodium a day. Given my history with high blood pressure, I have gotten use to cooking with low sodium products and trying to watch my intake there, as much as I do my fat and calories.
Grilled Shrimp Combo - 1,094 milligrams of sodium
Chicken Tortilla Soup - 2,108 milligrams of sodium
Imagine my shock when I realized that in one meal, I've just consumed 3,202 milligrams of sodium. That's more than the recommended amount, in ONE MEAL. I haven't even had dinner yet! How about some soup with my cup of sodium. Some salt with my shrimp?
I expected the soup to probably be about 1,000 milligrams. But over 2,000? And it wasn't until going back to their website for a second time to verify the numbers, that I noticed how much sodium was in the salad.
Is that much salt in our food really necessary? Is it not possible to provide us withdelicious, restaurant quality food in a manner that is healthy and affordable? It seems as though the answer is no.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Today, I was suppose to meet a new running partner, CCJ, to run 6 miles at Patterson Park but unfortunately, the weather had different plans for us. Instead, I worked an hour late and then drove straight to the fitness center at my apartment complex to hit the treadmill. The fear being, if I went home first to feed the cats and change, I wouldn't make it back out of the house. Glad to say I accomplished today's goal and ran 6 miles. Even better, I did it in 1:00:17. Nice to see my pace back up there and away from the 12 min pace I've been keeping lately.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
I take two different prescription drugs for the Fibromyalgia. The first is an anti-inflammatory called Celebrex and the second is for pain, Lyrica. Up until 2010, my mail order costs were $30 for 90 days worth of Celebrex, which I took once a day and the same cost for 90 days worth of Lyrica which I took twice a day. In January, my prescription drug costs doubled to $60. I did not anticipate this and I certainly hadn't budgeted for it in my flexible spending plan for the year.
In order to afford the cost, I started taking the Lyrica only once a day. Unfortunately, this meant more symptoms. As for the Celebrex, I had no choice but to continue taking it as prescribed.
I recently saw my Good Dr and explained to him the situation. His response..."Two can play at that game" and he promptly wrote out a prescription doubling my regular dose of Celebrex to twice a day with the theory that the cost would still be only $60. I thought, you're crazy...never going to work, now I'm going to get a bill for $120. Why on earth would the cost be the same if you're doubling the dose, therefore, doubling the amount of pills they have to give me?
Imagine my surprise when my shipment arrived yesterday and they gave me 180 pills of Celebrex for $60. The same cost as 90 pills. So whether I take it once a day or twice a day the cost is the same. The difference...how the prescription was written. I was shocked and pissed off too! Are you kidding me? How much freak'n money are these companies making?
Next up, the Lyrica. The Good Dr was kind enough to give me free samples of the Lyrica he had in the office so I wouldn't have to continue taking my medication only once a day and in the meantime, he had also doubled that prescription. I'm excited to see what will happen when I mail that one in too! Lets hope it's the same!
Score one for the Good Dr!!!
To those of you that have mail order medication....talk to your Doctors. It's worth a try!
Monday, May 3, 2010
2.any of the methods or disciplines prescribed, esp. a series of postures and breathing exercises practiced to achieve control of the body and mind, tranquillity, etc.
3.union of the self with the Supreme Being or ultimate principle.
I've tried a yoga class before and I've actually enjoyed it. I've also tried my P90X Yoga DVD which only left me frustrated with the positions and bored with the repetition of it all. But tonight, I was in a better place, minimal pain and thought, lets give it a try.
At 5 pm, I quickly changed at the office into my gym clothes, attempted to speed my way through traffic to get to the chiropractor by 5:45 pm (I didn't), rushed my way through the appointment, to finally get to the 6:30 pm yoga class. And now, after an hour and a half of nothing but rushing, I am asking my brain to silence itself as I attempt to liberate myself with Yoga. Easy right? Not so much.
As I'm laying on the floor listening to the instructor ask us to inhale and exhale using various parts of my body I am unfamiliar with, I'm already wondering if Yoga is for me. Only about 10 minutes into the class and I am having a silent argument within my head, actually shushing myself, because all I can think about while laying on the floor, simply breathing, is that I should be running, or taking spin, or on an elliptical machine. I could even be at home making tonight's dinner, making lunch for tomorrow, even packing my gym bag for tomorrows run. But what I can't do, is quiet my brain.
Let's be honest...for a woman, this is extremely difficult. Unless you are a master at meditating or a yoga-ologist (yes, I realize that may not be a real word), women are ALWAYS thinking. You ask a man what he's thinking and if tells you nothing, he is probably telling you the truth. But if a woman tells you she's thinking about nothing, she's probably just had 10 different thoughts in a span of 5 minutes. They might all be meaningless, but she's thinking. A women NEVER stops thinking.
Apologies...back to the topic at hand. Just as I'm considering leaving the class, we raise ourselves from the floor to begin our first "Sun Salutation". It is at this point that I realize our instructor is a giraffe. Please do not think I mean this to be disrespectful, as I do not. I happen to think giraffes are beautiful creatures. This woman is tall, fit and incredibly flexible; her legs move gracefully and with such ease, all the while I can barely manage to put my left arm over my head, reach my right arm back, grabbing my right ankle to hold it in place and "balance" for several minutes. As I'm watching my classmates follow along with no issues, my mind is already wondering and thinking about how I will blog about this later and wondering if I can catch up with my personal trainer before he leaves to discuss boxing lessons.
Not even a half hour into the class and I silently roll up my mat, grab my socks and shoes and tip toe out the door, hoping no one notices. I realize at this point that yoga to me, is nothing but a bunch of vocabulary words I can't pronounce, with definitions I won't even pretend to know and balancing acts I can't perform.
Yoga is most definitely not for me. I don't think my mind, nor my body, can handle the silence.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
For those of you unfamiliar with Fibromyalgia (FM), it's a little like Arthritis and a whole lot more. You get your aches and pains in various joints, but might also have temperature issues (extreme hot/cold), soft tissue tenderness (you bump into a wall and you can't breath because it feels like your skin is on fire). For some people, there is even the extreme fatigue. For me, my biggest hurdles are the pain and the soft tissue tenderness.
On a good day, all or most of the pain is managed with medication and exercise. However, exercise too much or not enough and I could have a flair up. Sometimes, after a good/tough work out, my joints hurt, my muscles hurt and I'm trying to differentiate between what's normal post work out soreness and whats the FM pain. Even during a work out with my personal trainer I'm pointing out what hurts and asking, is that the workout? No, he says, that's the FM. After a run and my lower back hurts - did I screw it up? Did I throw it out? Should I not do that work out or is it the FM?
These days, there seems to be a lot of flair ups, making it difficult to want to work out, making it difficult to get motivated. Last night as I lay in bed the pain was in my right hand for a bit, then it moved to my left foot, then up to my knees. Sometimes the pain stays in one place, those days I am thankful. But when it randomly moves through out the body with no pattern, those are the days when I reach for extra dose of medication and hope its enough becuase I know I need to do it all again tomorrow. Last night was one of those days.
Today...today it seems manageable. Just finished a 3.5 mile run and feeling decent and hoping to make it through an upper body work out.
Oh, by the way...got on the scale this morning as Sunday is my usual weigh in day....141.5. Ouch. But seeing those numbers today is what helped get my arse out the door to do my run this morning. Sometimes we all just need a good reality check from time to time.
Saturday, May 1, 2010
I woke up this morning with the intention of getting back on the wagon. I ate my banana, my 1/2 cup milk and 1 cup Kashi cereal and then I drove to Druid Hill Lake with the intention of running 7 miles. Just as I was completing my 3rd mile, the area was taken over by hundreds of walkers coming down the hill for some kind of walkathon.
Great, I'm glad people are exercising, that's wonderful, but have some respect for the people that were there before you, that are say...running, biking? Keep your dogs on short leashes and the strollers and the walkers off to the right, so the bikers and runners can finish their work out.
Obviously, that didn't happen so after completing my 3rd mile I headed home with the intent to run at least another 3 in my own neighborhood. By the time I got home it was already 74 degrees out and it didn't take much to talk myself out of finishing my 7 mile run for the day.
But still in a healthy, happy frame of mind, I stopped at Panera for lunch and had a delicious Mediterranean salmon salad before joining my girl friend and her little girl and dog, Lucy for a leisurely afternoon walk. Again....I started off really well.
However, on the way home I saw a crowd of people outside Rita's and I thought, wow, ice cream would be really good right now. I thought it through even farther and thought, let me go to Giant since its on the way home and pick up Skinny Cow ice cream. This way, I'm still getting my treat but it won't be so bad. This decision here was my down fall....
Walking into Giant I see that they are giving out hot dogs and a beverage if you are kind enough to donate $2 dollars to children with cancer. How can I NOT give to children with cancer? I pick up my Skinny Cow ice cream cones and leave with a hot dog and a cherry crush soda. The first soda I have had in a VERY long time, that isn't diet (they didn't have any) and wow, sweet, but tasty. This was bad choice #1.
Bad choice #2? I chose to stop at a Giant directly behind a Chipotle. Have you been to a Chipotle? They have only the best chips and guacamole in town and amazing burritos. Having just finished my hot dog, I'm thinking chips and guacamole would be a nice side. Pull over, go inside and what happens? Out of my mouth comes a request for a large quesadilla with carnitas meat, along my chips and guacamole. I don't even know where that came from! And lets not forget the side of sour cream to go with it. As if I really needed any of this. All the while I'm thinking and knowing, I shouldn't be doing this. I'm doing this because I'm sad. I'm doing this for no good reason, yet, I do it anyway. This my friends, is what they call emotional eating.
After having enjoyed my wonderful meal, I promptly fall asleep on the sofa and dream away the afternoon. Later I wake up and decide to watch Biggest Loser in hopes of finding inspiration and all I can think is, I have no excuse. I could have been exercising instead of sleeping. I could have been exercising instead of eating. I need to get my arse back in gear and stop eating like this. And this my friends, is what lead me to the start of my blog.
And while I'm being honest, I should admit to having the single serving of cannoli chips and dip from Varcarro's in Canton this evening and then coming home to finally eat the skinny cow ice cream I had bought earlier in the day, but hadn't actually gotten to at that time. I don't even want to try and think about the calories I consumed today and obviously, didn't work off.
Lets hope tomorrow is a better day.
To be 29 years old and just told that I was pre-diabetic, that scared me. That is what motivated me. I didn't want to be sick. I didn't want to be unhappy anymore.
It took some time to get the medication worked out for the Fibromyalgia, but I signed up at the gym and began taking water aerobics classes. I found that even though I couldn't walk on a treadmill for 3o minutes, I could be in the water and work out for an hour and not hurt as much.