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Yoga slacker and walking breaks

Confession time: Until this very morning, I had not done any yoga since the class I attended last Thursday! 😦

I think I sort of let the disappointment of the class get to my head, plus with the snow and everything over the weekend, my normal “schedule” just got thrown out of whack. But I’m happy to say I am refocused again!

Maybe someday!

Today, I did a 20 minute practice on my own in my living room.

I turned on some relaxing tunes, kept the lights low, and just went with it. I like to start in a seated position, warm up and stretch my neck and shoulder muscles (which were sore from my weight training yesterday), and then do a few cat & cow stretches to warm up my back. I pretty much do this every time!

Then I went into downward facing dog. I included my two favorite poses, half pigeon and tree pose. I actually found tree pose to be very challenging, balance-wise, this morning and I’m sure that’s because I’ve been a yoga slacker the past week.

I also included the Warrior series today, which felt great to my legs after running the past two days.

Today, I have a dental appointment so I’m not able to make it to the gym or run for any length of time. What to do on days like this?

WALKING BREAKS!

I get two 15-minute breaks at work and while it’s certainly not warm outside today, the sun is shining and the cool breeze will just inspire me to walk faster, right?

Two 15-minute walking breaks add up to 30 minutes of walking, plus I plan to walk to my car later this afternoon (instead of taking the shuttle, which I did this morning because it was too cold) which will add another 15 minutes on. So by the end of the day, I can say I did 20 minutes of yoga and spent 45 minutes walking for my exercise!

What do you do for exercise when you are pressed for time?

Thank you, Dr. McDougall

Yesterday when I got home from work, I found a lovely package waiting at my door.

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The people from Dr. McDougall’s sent me this lovely package of their soups, which are all vegan! Several of them are gluten free as well and they all come in eco-friendly packaging that is BPA free.

They also sent me this really huge bowl and a placemat/napkin set!

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For lunch today, I decided to try the Chunky Tomato because that’s what I was in the mood for 😉

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I thought I’d eat the entire container but there is more in there than I thought, so I put the rest in the fridge!

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I had a slice of Great Harvest unsweetened whole wheat bread on the side. I think it just might be my favorite bread ever.

The soup was pretty tasty. There were lots of chunks of tomato in it and I loved the flavor. It did not taste like canned soup at all, which makes sense because…it’s not.

I can’t wait to try the other flavors.

After lunch, I took Suzie on a walk for about an hour and now we’re both back home chilling on the couch watching, what else?

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I think I’m obsessed. The movie is different from the play but I like them both and it’s the only thing I have on DVD 🙂 Plus I think the movie has a few features that make it unique and fun, like the dream/dance sequence in “Tango Maureen.”

It is a beautiful day here, I’ve got all the windows open and the breeze is blowing in. Who knew it’d be in the 70’s in November? I’m telling you, the weather here in Kentucky is so unpredictable. We can have all the seasons in one week.

When Josh gets home from playing disc golf we’re going to have dinner at Waffle House. We’re such an old married couple sometimes.

Day 13: Walking fool

Even though Tuesdays usually hit me like most people’s Monday’s do, it was really a great day, I have no complaints!

For breakfast, I had oats with peanut butter and half a peach 🙂

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Mid morning I snacked on some more peanuts (sorry my snacks are so repetitive)!

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Before lunch, I went for a 50-minute walk with some co-workers of mine. It was so nice to catch up, we all used to walk together a lot back in the day 😉 The weather was cool though, so I think we walked even faster than usual to stay warm!

I was going to eat lunch before I left (at noon) but when 11:30 rolled around I just wasn’t that hungry. In the past, I would’ve just eaten anyway because of time, but I chose not to and ate when I got back to my desk. Even at 1:00, I didn’t have my normal “lunch” appetite, so I was glad I waited. And that I brought a smaller portion of food.

Leftover enchilada! Just one…I don’t know how I ate two the other night 🙂

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I really love this Vegan Planet cookbook. Have I said that yet?

After such a spicy lunch, I found myself wanting something sweet. There is a candy jar in the office with some chocolate selections but none of which are vegan. It’s amazing how choosing this diet for myself has actually prevented me from eating some things I shouldn’t be anyway!

Luckily, I found this “stash”ed in my desk drawer…

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Yay, that totally worked!

Lunch kept me full for a while but later in the afternoon, before hitting the gym, I snacked on some carrots and hummus. There is a lot of orange in my diet these days 😉

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At the gym, I warmed up on the treadmill while reviewing my flashcards for my Exercise Science exam (which is today). I ended up trotting for 11 minutes!

Then I did some weights and such (two sets each, except for the abs):

  • Chest presses
  • Squats
  • Bicep curls
  • Tricep overhead extensions
  • Shoulder shrugs
  • Shoulder overhead presses
  • Tricep kickbacks
  • Dead lifts
  • Upright rows
  • Regular crunches
  • Side crunches
  • Reverse crunches
  • Toe touch crunches (legs straight up, reaching for toes)
  • Back extensions

That was quite a workout. And I am just the right amount of sore today 🙂

When I got home, I snacked on a piece of whole wheat bread with peanut butter.

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Why? Well, I had worked up quite an appetite on the way home. And I had to run back out and meet my friend Candy for another WALK!

I’m not sure how far we went, I’ll have to check on mapmyrun.com later, but it was a little less than an hour. I’m guessing 2-3 miles. Fun times 🙂

When I got home, it was finally dinner time and I made another concoction from Vegan Planet (I think I’m going all Julie Powell on this book, ha ha).

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This recipe involved one of my favorite foods that I hadn’t had in a while due to being unable to find a decent one.

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Now that I know what to look for (dark color, soft, etc.) I was able to find an amazing avocado at the store this weekend, on sale for 98 cents too!

I swapped a few ingredients in this recipe: it called for vegetarian chili, but I just used my leftover black beans and diced tomatoes. I also subbed a green pepper for the red and omitted the chile pepper since my diced tomatoes contained chiles already. Other than that, I think I kept everything the same (only a one serving sized recipe instead of 4). I used half the avocado.

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Man did it feel good to get all those veggies in! I can’t wait to make this again since I still have leftover ingredients. After I took this picture, I found some green taco sauce in the fridge so I drizzled a little bit on there as “dressing”. The recipe calls for vegan cheese and vegan sour cream but I wasn’t feeling it. It was perfect just like this.

Oops, I totally forgot the black olives! Will have to use those next time.

I don’t think I’m ever really going to get tired of this snack either 🙂

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I ate this while watching the results show of “Dancing with the Stars”. Sadly, even with my 11 phone calls to vote, my man Chuck Liddell was voted off this week 😦

I didn’t think he was the worst one on there and I think going first on Monday night sort of set him up too. But with the dances getting more difficult as the week’s go on, it was bound to happen before long. I really don’t care who wins so I probably won’t watch the show much anymore. Darn!

Anyway, that was my Tuesday. How was yours?

That’s not vegan

Wow, you guys, I am simply amazed at how hard it is to eat vegan-ly. I haven’t gone full blown yet but I have spent the past couple of days observing the ingredients in some of the things I eat and hardly anything is vegan! It’s amazing what sneaks into some products.

Breakfast this morning was my very last Holey Donut, Banana Cream Pie. I remember not caring much for this one the first time around but I must’ve heated it right this time because the banana insides were so creamy and delicious. Unfortunately, as I read on their website, this filling has HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP. Bad, bad, bad.

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On the side I had a Morningstar Farms sausage patty (so not vegan, contains lots of milk ingredients) and some strawberries.

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Sadly, after two strawberries, they just didn’t taste good so I threw the rest away 😦 I don’t know if it was just that it didn’t go with what I was eating, if they were too sweet (and I’m not used to it anymore), or what. Sad though.

My walk this morning was great though. The 15 minutes really starts to fly by when you make it a habit. When I got back I munched on these, which Kashi so graciously sent me last week 🙂

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These were so good! Not vegan but good. Haha. They reminded me of a cereal I’d had before but I couldn’t quite place it. Anyone know? I want to say Honeycombs or something like that, but I never ate those so that can’t be it. Thanks Kashi!

I would probably buy these myself depending on how far I take this vegan thing. Obviously not too far yet 😉

For lunch, I had a “let’s use up what’s in the fridge” salad of romaine lettuce, cucumbers and pinto beans. Doesn’t sound like much but it tasted good and held me quite a while too.

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On my afternoon walk, I remembered this picture I took last week of an albino squirrel on campus. They are actually pretty common (on campus) but I hadn’t seen one in a while and I know a lot of you haven’t so I tried to get a good pic with my camera phone!

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He was closer to me but he kept running away from the crazy lady with the phone, haha.

For my snack, I had some more almonds.

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Then I went to a meeting, left work and hit the gym for a quick 30 minute workout. I did upper body (chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps) weights, abs, and legs getting in two sets of every exercise. It was quick and simple but I definitely felt it when I was leaving!

Dinner was another “throw together what’s left in the fridge” meal…can you tell it’s almost grocery shopping day, and we’re going out of town next weekend!

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This is leftover barley, mixed stir fry veggies, spaghetti sauce and Morningstar Farms veggie crumbles (the only non-vegan ingredient). I’ve made a dish similar to this before and it looks and sounds disgusting to some, but it’s so good.

I’ve successfully used up a lot of stuff in our freezer and refrigerator, yay!

After dinner had settled, I met my friend Candy for a walk at the park. It is such a cool, cloudy evening, perfect walking weather. We went three times around the track which is 3 miles, in about 45 minutes!

When I got home, I was thinking of “desserts” but what I really wanted was a “snack” and my body was telling me banana and PB, so I listened and put down the dark chocolate.

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I’m 110% satisfied and content. It’s amazing what listening to your body does and giving it what it really wants and not what you think you should be having. I wish I could do this every time, but I will cherish this one 😉

I also drank two big ol’ glasses of water because this girl was thirsty!

Time to start settling down for the night. Hooray, tomorrow is Friday and the looong weekend can begin. Have a good one everybody!

Walking is great

After running and training for races, it is easy to get that attitude where walking just doesn’t seem like much in terms of exercise. I have to keep reminding myself that I lost the majority of my weight before I started running, so it is obvious that when you make a moderate effort at walking, it pays off! Plus, it is a fun way to catch up with friends and family 🙂

Yesterday before lunch, I took a 40-minute walk with a co-worker, which was totally fun. It is nice to get outside and enjoy the fresh air when you are stuck in an office all day. I also felt like my legs got a good workout as we encounter a small hill along the way.

Last night, I met a friend for dinner at Jason’s Deli where we both decided to get the salad bar for $6.99 and we loaded up on veggies!

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This bowl contained:

  • Spring mix greens
  • Bean salad (garbanzos, kidney, red onion, yellow pepper)
  • Carrots, Broccoli, Cauliflower
  • Sprouts
  • Roasted Red Pepper hummus
  • Hardboiled egg
  • Olives
  • Scoop of potato salad
  • Gingerbread mini-muffin + Small piece of toast (not sure of seasoning but it was good)

After that I went back for a second (smaller) bowl and had some more bean salad, carrots & cucumbers + hummus, tiny bit of pasta salad, a mini corn muffin and some fruit (watermelon, grapes, apple). Jason’s Deli offers FREE frozen yogurt soft serve, so I had a very small cup of that to finish off the meal. I think in the future, I will pass on that because I was pretty full afterwards!

Afterwards, we put her son in the stroller and took a little stroll to the end of the street and back for about 30 minutes (which totally helped with digestion). That’s the other thing about walks…I can take several throughout the day and not have it feel like I killed myself working out!

In total, I exercised for 100 minutes yesterday (including my morning run). I did not feel tired at all until it was time to go to bed…in fact, I spent most of the day feeling energized 🙂

Just thought I would share that, Happy Wednesday, we’re halfway there!

Holy planks

Ouch, my upper body and core muscles are sore today!

Everything I ate yesterday held me over rather well. Even the smoothie from the morning; I was worried that because I didn’t have any grains I would be hungry by 8:00 but no such thing happened. It doesn’t hurt that I drink coffee and chug water when I get to work 😉

Lunch was surprisingly good and that beautifulness that is Fage 2% w/ Cherry held me over well through the afternoon, a workout, and until dinner which was almost 5 hours!

Workout

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately. I’m not sure why I think of this as a “bummer” or a “bad thing” but I don’t think I’m cut out for the long distance running, at least not if I can’t commit to a serious training schedule. Last year, I was a beast. I followed the training to a T and did the races almost effortlessly; but then I burned out. I’ve done ok this year, but I struggled at the end of the 10-miler, doing lots of walking, and I know next weekends mini-marathon is going to be a challenge as well. So I’m thinking about walking the whole thing. What do you guys think?

For some perspective, my outdoor workout included a one hour walk. I walk pretty fast normally, so I estimate I kept a good 15-minute mile pace (or 4.0 mph). I expected to be disappointed and not even feel like I worked out, but that was so not the case. I should remember, was not long ago that I was walking every day, that’s one of the things that helped me lose over 70 lbs (in addition to healthy eating)! I was breathing harder than I would on a stroll, I sweated (not as much as with running), and my legs are still sore today, just not as much as they would have been. And I chose a route that included some inclines, so that was challenging too. Plus it was just so nice to be out in the warm sunshine, taking in the sights and not overexerting myself.

So I think my walk was a success. And I don’t think there is anything wrong with changing my routine to short distance running and long distance walking. I’m totally a 5k runner and I did enjoy the challenge of the 10k, but the longer distances are/were not my friend this year. We’ll see, I’ll keep you all posted for sure 🙂

After my walk, I went back to the gym for some good stretching; I’ve been incorporating yoga poses into my routine which has really helped my calves and hips (down dog and pigeon). Now that the races are winding down, I so want to get back into yoga classes. I really miss how yoga makes me feel. So that’s on the to do list.

I also did something inspired by Angela, planks and side planks, oh boy! I started off in regular plank holding for 1 minute. This alone was a miracle because I used to shake and curse through 30 seconds, so being able to do it for a minute without complaining was inspiring to me. Now the side planks (with one arm) I could only hold for 30 seconds each. I rotated from side to side, doing each of the three planks twice. That’s why my arms and core are sore today! 😉

For dinner, my husband cooked some chicken on the grill (marinated in buffalo sauce!) and I had a sweet potato with whipped butter and cinnamon and a slice of flax toast with butter as my sides.

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For dessert, two more great pieces of advice (one said “Happiness is Contagious” I remember that!). My dad calls dark chocolate his “blood pressure medication” (rolls eyes)…

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The husband and I watched “Role Models” which was pretty cute but definitely for adults only; we’re big KISS fans, so if you’ve seen the flick, you can imagine what parts we enjoyed the most 🙂 I really enjoy Paul Rudd, always have. I’ve had “Love Gun” stuck in my head since last night, going on 12 hours now, hahaha. At our wedding, my husband and I danced our first dance to “Forever” by KISS. Our future children are going to be so embarrassed by us 😉

During the flick, I got a little snacky…guess that walk was more powerful than I thought, so I had a cup of Multigrain Cheerios and some tea.

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Then, I guess this was sort of an experiment, but I had a second cup with a spoonful of Nutella

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I guess this addiction has been broken without me knowing it?! This stuff used to not last a week in my house and now I’ve only had two spoonfuls in almost a week! And last night when I ate this, I actually said to myself “This tastes too sweet!” Hahaha. I guess cutting out the CRAP really did away with some cravings after all. Nutella is not (really) crap, although the first ingredient is sugar. There are healthier alternatives out there too, but its not too bad to have in moderation.

I think I will reserve the rest of it for recipes or if I get a nice loaf of french bread one day, ooh or some croissants? 🙂

Happy Friday, yay, we made it!!