Tag Archives: Weight loss

Things I’m gaining while I’m losing!


This isn’t me but this is what I did!!  Shirshasana (Photo credit: kellinahandbasket) 

Ok, no time for a long, well thought out post!

Since starting WW, I’ve lost 5 lbs!  Which could be mostly water weight, but feels good nonetheless.  I have been consistently going over my points per day, and using up almost all my “extra” points they give you a week.  I haven’t been starving, but I also haven’t been making the healthiest choices I could.  Sometimes I think the “points” thing makes it a little too easy to cheat.  Like, last night I shouldn’t have eaten half a frozen pizza from Trader Joe’s, but it fit within my points so that’s what I did!  This last week I didn’t really lose anything, which I’m ok with since I went to a Top Chef dinner (what?  I can’t tell you anything else about it!), ate out Indian  on Friday night and didn’t work out as much as I could.

But, this week I feel like I’ve gained something really important. I’ve gained back my hope, my motivation, and my pride. I’ve realized just how far I’ve come since starting my wellness journey 6 years ago!  I might weigh more now, but I’m so much freakin stronger than I was!  Case in point: I did 22 REAL push ups today.  I also have been ROCKING the Insanity workouts which are the hardest workouts I’ve ever done.  This has really strengthened my arms, core, shoulders and legs! I noticed when I did a yoga podcast yesterday and I did the whole plank/downdog/plank thing repeatedly with no problem.  Also, I did my first LEGIT yoga headstand! And held it for like, 20 seconds!  It was amazing.  I did another one yesterday and today just to prove I could, and because it’s a killer core builder.

I was so tired this morning I wanted to take the day off. But today’s my weigh in day for WW and I wanted to have a loss, so I decided to do the Jillian Michaels Banish Fat video.  I remember the first time I did this video, I almost died.  I was huffing and puffing and “phoning it in” for the whole second half.  Today, I picked it because it was an “easy” work out for me!  And, I added in some harder moves because I wanted to kill it.  And kill it I did.

I am super excited to be feeling strong and proud of my body again.  I think that’s the most important thing you gain during the weight loss process–your confidence and self respect.

I have 3 days to lose 1.6 lbs to win my Diet Bet! Can I do it?  I’ll let you know! Either way, I think I’ll do another one because it’s super motivational and keeps me on a schedule.

Gotta Go, Keep it moving!


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New Year, New Favorites, and least favorites!

Hello, everybody!

Well I suppose it’s time for the obligatory new year’s post where I go into how this year is going to be different, I’m going to be different, and so are you! Well, I’m with Roni here on the “stateless diet”, so I am just moving forward on my path to better health and cleaner living.  Which really means, of course, that I haven’t lost weight!  Another reason I haven’t posted on my healthy living/weight loss/cooking blog.

Well, cynical self, I hate to break it to you, but things ARE going to be different year.  Why?  Well, because I’m going to be quitting my job, moving back to Santa Cruz for a month (or two!), and finishing grad school!  By this time next year I’ll have a masters and be on my way to a BCBA!  So yeah, I actually feel confident that this year is bringing some big changes for me and my boys.

Ok, and I confess, I jumped on the New Year’s band wagon and joined Weight Watchers. I’ve had success on their plan before (a long time ago) so I thought I would try it again.  So far so good, but we’ll see! I’ll keep you posted.  I like that fruits and veggies are “free”, which encourages me to eat them!  But, I don’t really like that traditional processed “diet” foods are low points while wholesome things like grains are pretty high.  I’m definitely trying to stick to the Skinny Rules but it gets tricky!

Another first? I joined a Diet Bet! 

I’m not really a betting gal, but I am all about rewards.  And response cost!  I bet 20$ that I will lose 7 lbs. by the end of the month! If I do it, I get to split the pot with everyone else who succeeds.  So far the pot for my bet is over $12,000!  I definitely don’t want to lose 20 bucks, and I definitely want to win some cashola!  It may sound silly  but 20$ is a small price to pay for motivation!

I guess instead of New Year’s Resolutions, this years I have New Years projects!  I also am on a mission to DIY make-over my bedroom into a fabulous chic boudoir!  Here is my first step:


New vintage side table, lamp and table hippo!

What are your New Year’s projects? Anything big on your horizon? I”d love to hear!

And now, a few favorites to start this year off right!

Gerber Daisies!


Anything mint or pistachio colored!

Screen Shot 2013-01-10 at 9.49.01 PMScreen Shot 2013-01-10 at 9.50.44 PM

This creepy abandoned zoo in Griffith Park.  Haunted? Probably.  Reminiscent of the Lost bear cages? Yes.  Instagrammers heaven? Totes.


And, I can’t really afford to eat this on my WW plan, but this soda bread and these empanadas sound SOOO GOOD!

Finally, a truly terrible invention that is another first for me: a LEAST FAVORITE!  Don’t you sometimes wish Facebook had a thumbs down button? Well now you can hate all you want with a least favorites list!

This machine lets you eat all you want and then sucks it out of your stomach so you don’t get fat.  Everyone’s dream come true! Honestly, it just makes me so mad that the capitalist market encourages schemes like this instead of treating the problem.  Instead of coming up with creative ideas to encourage healthy living, let’s make tons of money off letting people consume as much as they want and not change their lifestyle at all! Ugh.  Anyways.  Signing off, for a better and brighter 2013!

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Skinny Rules Challenge Day 4: No more white flour!


Wheat (Photo credit: Big Grey Mare ~ Almost, but not quite caught up!)

This is my fourth day of my attempt to incorporate Bob Harper’s Skinny Rules into my daily eating/living habits, one rule at a time.

Todays rule: Slash your intake of refined grains and flours!  This is a toughie for me, the lover of all that is carbs.  Bob Harper goes into a detailed explanation of why you shouldn’t eat refined flours or grains, especially in the amounts that we eat them today.  When they process wheat, they take out all the good parts that have fiber and nutrients and other good stuff.  White breads, pastas and rice are all broken down to the point that they are essentially empty calories.  I’m obviously exhausted right now and too tired to really know what I’m talking about. But you get the point: No more white bread (baguettes!), pastas (ravioli! Lasagna!) or rice (the asian inside me dies a little each day!).

Basically, you should eat whole grains.  If you are nutritionally challenged, like me, you’re like “ok, but what the heck is a whole grain anyways, and isn’t my wheat bread healthy?”  NO.  NO, says Bob Harper!  Most “wheat” breads are made with refined wheat flour! So even though they say they are healthy, they are not!  If you do eat bread, you have to eat bread made with 100% whole wheat flour as the first ingredient.  “wheat flour” is not the same as “100% whole wheat flour”.  Who knew?  Luckily, I found a brand called Alpine Valley that sells 100% whole wheat bread at costco!  With organic everything and no artificial sweeteners, score!  And, it actually tastes way better than the fake “wheat” bread I’ve been eating!  (no I’m not paid for this, I’m just excited to find something healthy and tasty.  It’s the little things in life, folks).

Grains, the largest food group in many nutriti...

Grains, the largest food group in many nutrition guides, includes oats, barley and bread. Cookies, however, are categorized as sugars. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I just found a website going into full detail on what whole grains are and how you can tell what is what.  Apparently, I thought I was being super healthy by eating barley, but since it’s “pearled barley”, it’s not a whole grain? Damn!  Well, it’s still better than white rice and super filling.

I did pretty good with the other rules today, except drinking water before every meal.  I didn’t get a lunch break (surprise), and couldn’t fill up my water bottle all day! Parched! But drank a lot of water when I got home.

Breakfast was a smoothie with greek yogurt, almond milk, berries.  Lunch was chicken breast sandwich (whole wheat bread!) and a cucumber.  Snack was Kashi whole grain crackers with kale/spinach yogurt dip and some bell peppers.  Dinner I had black bean and corn salad  (recipe coming soon I hope) with turkey meatballs as a lettuce wrap.  Then I had 2 dates!  Not too bad!

Tomorrow:  Eat 30-50 grams of fiber a day

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Skinny Rules Challenge Day 3: Eat your Protein!

I am 3 days in to a 20 day challenge to learn to eat healthily by following Bob Harper’s Skinny Rules, 1 day at a time.

Today’s Rule: Eat Protein with every meal.

Well I usually do that, but by eliminating most forms of carbs (processed grains), you end up eating a lot more protein anyways.  I’ve been into high protein diets since high school when my family all went on the Atkins diet.  I lost tons of weight! Then I gained it all back!  However, I did learn that eggs, cheese and meat can be very filling snacks.  I don’t think atkinsers can eat nuts because of the carbs.  Anyways, I also find that if I eat sugary snacks like granola bars, they usually make me hungrier and feel really crappy.  I’m pretty sure I’m going to have diabetes problems later in life because I’m really blood sugar  sensitive.  If I eat fruit or something sugary on an empty stomach, it makes me feel all light headed, tired, and hungrier than before!

Bob Harper says you should eat half as many grams of protein as you weigh.  So, if you weigh 200 lbs you should eat 100 grams of protein a day.  He has no real reason or scientific basis for this and freely admits that.  From personal experience I agree that it’s important to eat tons of protein as much as possible so I don’t get hungry and over eat.  Plus I think it’s harder to over indulge in proteins.  It’s super easy to eat a giant bag of chips/crackers/bread etc.  Rarely am I ever like “oh yeah, gimme some more eggs!”  enough is enough.

I’m pretty happy with my plan to introduce the rules slowly.  As the days go by, the previous rules seem easier and like they are just habits.  I drank a TON of water today, I probably refilled my 20 oz brita bottle 4 times at work (12 hour day).  This is easier because it is SO DAMN HOT!  Also, I put even less agave in my coffee this morning and was happy with the result. I forgot that I like coffee for the taste of coffee, not just the sugar that comes in it!  So, I followed 3 out of 3 rules today! Go me!

Protein crystals

Protein crystals (Photo credit: orinoco14)

Today I ate greek yogurt and berries, and a piece of whole wheat toast with hummus and 1/2 slice cheese for breakfast.  Lunch was a chicken breast sandwich on whole wheat bread with avo, tomato and pickles (no cheese or mayo!:)) and a little seaweed salad.  Snack was an apple and a hardboiled egg.  Ate a babybel cheese on the drive home, then had barley, cooked spinach, turkey meatballs and tahini for dinner!  I had the night munchies after, so I ate some cottage cheese with hot sauce. It sounds weird, I know but it’s actually delicious, and high protein!  Last night after I blogged I ate some cheese and crackers so I wanted to stick to the plan today.  I feel successful, and my stomach feels content and not bloated.

I put all my food into SparkPeople calorie calculator, and I ate 98 grams of protein today! Whoa! Way over my goal.  I also stayed around 1300 calories, which is quite impressive for me.

Tomorrow’s Rule: Slashing intake of refined flours/grains.

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Bob Harper’s Skinny Rules: Review and Challenge!

I recently bought Bob Harper’s “The Skinny Rules” book.  My eating has gotten kind of out of control, especially after this week long vacation ending in San Francisco!  Honestly, when given the chance I eat fairly healthy.  I definitely need to work on my portion control.  The hardest thing for me is eating out.  Who wants to order the grilled chicken salad every time?

I didn’t want to go on a “diet”, seeing how they never work and I just feel deprived and don’t ever stick to them.  Instead, I want to learn how to eat healthier in an easy, natural way.  Some people can control every little thing they put in their body with an obsessive attention to detail.  I’m more of a “eat when I’m hungry and be damned the consequences” kind of girl.  However, telling myself to “eat more whole grains and vegetables” hasn’t really resulted in a measurable change in the past.

I researched several diet books, but the one that stood out to me was Bob Harper’s “Skinny Rules”.  Not necessarily because he’s famous and on the Biggest Loser (but if he can get them to lose weight, he must be good!), but because it seems easy to understand and use.  It consists of 20 rules to follow to achieve healthier eating habits.  I like it because  these rules are concrete, measurable, and easy for me to understand. It’s pretty much a task analysis to healthy living!  Which is perfect for me, because I can make a checklist and basically take data on whether I’m following the rules.

Some of the rules are super easy and common sense.  The first one is “drink a ton of water, at least one big glass before every meal”.  Some are going to be harder for me to follow, like cutting out refined grains (bread! rice! pasta!) and not eating carbs after lunch.  He goes into detail about why these rules are important for maintaining a healthy weight and blood sugar level (important for those who have family history of diabetes).  I like how he explains the rules and uses data to back his claims.  However, he doesn’t go into too much detail with some of the rules and how to follow them exactly.  Like when he says “only eat whole grains”, I am so nutritionally challenged that I would like a list of exactly which grains I can eat, how to cook them, and what a portion size is.

After explaining all 20 rules, he gives tips on how to follow them and 4 weeks worth of recipes and diet plans for men and women.  I don’t know how helpful the menu plan will be for me, as I eat lunch on the go or in my car a lot (don’t worry, I always pack it) and a lot of his lunch recipes involve cooking and prep time I just don’t have.

Overall I think the book is helpful for people like me who want to eat healthy, but need someone to outline how, exactly to go about that.  If you already maintain a healthy diet, I think this book is probably pretty basic for you.  But for me, it’s perfect.  Somewhere to start, some rules to follow.  Something to help me take control of my eating!

Which brings me to my challenge.  I decided that trying to do all 20 rules all at once might be a drastic change that I wouldn’t be able to sustain, and would end up just like any diet.  I am challenging myself to follow 1 rule a day, adding as I go.  (First day, rule 1, second day rule 1 & 2, etc.)  By the end of the 20 days, I should be eating healthier and feeling more in control!  Plus, it will help me feel successful by achieving a new goal each day while maintaining the old ones.  By the end of the 20 days, I will be well on my way to forming a healthy eating habit!  Stay posted to see how it goes.  Honestly, this week is about to get super crazy (12 hour work days plus school just started so lots of homework! and tests! and starting my thesis!), so I might not be able to post every day.  But I will try!  I’ll let you know what I think as I go!

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