Food Talk

I don’t normally talk about eating. Well, that’s not true. I do talk about eating a lot of crap. Like the fried ice cream that hubs and I shared.

Or my suggestive-looking German dinner. (I had a friend tell me it looks like a demented muppet, which is better than what I was thinking…)

Or giant beers on a Monday night.

I don’t talk about when I’m trying to eat well, which is basically all of the time except when I give in to things like desserts and drinks on the weekend. Anyway, I’m going to talk about that other eating. The non-crappy kind where I try to decline desserts and not spend evenings on intimate dates with the fridge.

About five years ago, I started Weight Watchers (WW). WW showed me this complete new way of eating and I was really successful on it. I lost 26lbs in a little over four months and kept it off for a good three years until I started gaining some back. (Some of that weight gain was from muscle I gained in Crossfit and some of it was from big fat cupcakes I shoved into my mouth.)

Anyway, when you’re on WW, you count points. So everything you put in your mouth has a point value and you have a certain amount of points you can eat each day. I kept a food log so I wouldn’t go over my points. This is where it started. Instead of seeing food as food, I saw everything as a point value. If it was too many points, I wouldn’t eat it.

Fast forward three years and I got soooo tired of counting points. I got to the point where I would look at someone else’s meal, calculate the points in my mind, and think, “omg, do they know that meal is 32 points? That’s more than you should eat in a day!” So, I quit WW and decided to use MyFitnessPal to count calories, because there was no way I was going to quit keeping a food diary. MyFitnessPal was different enough that I kept logging my food – every single day – for another two years. Which brings me to today. Big surprise! I’m soooo tired of counting calories.

I was talking to my friend, Kate, last week about how I’ve wanted to lose 10 lbs for the past 80 years and how the four pieces of cake I just ate at work weren’t helping with that. (There were a lot of flavors, had to try them all!) She asked me if I ever kept a food diary. When I told her that I’ve done that every day for the past five years, she said, “that sounds exhausting.”

Yep. It is. Now I’m at the point where the thought of food just stresses me out. I mean, once I’m eating it, I’m fine. Obviously. You can look at my ba-donk-a-donk and see that. I just hate accepting dinner plans because it’s out of my comfort zone of the five meals I eat regularly at home. Am I going to eat too much when I’m out? Am I going to eat just right? <—thats where the stress comes from

Later that day, I told hubs how sick I am of logging my food and how I wished I didn’t have to anymore. I tried to rationalize it by saying that it helps me know when I should stop eating for the day. He then lovingly told me I eat whatever I want anyway, but I just write all the crap I eat down.

Rude.

So here I am on day three of not logging my food for the first time in five years. It’s one of those habits that is so engrained in me that I’m still counting calories mentally but I’m hoping that will go away soon. I’m also hoping that not seeing how many calories I have left in the day will change my eating. When I see I have a certain amount left, I think I talk myself into being hungry even though I might not be. Then I eat those calories just to be hungry later and eat again anyway. I’ve never heard of keeping a food diary as being a bad thing, but I think it is for me. Maybe. We’ll see how this goes.

Long story short: I’m gonna eat when I feel like it and not write that shit down.

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Sunday Bunday

It’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these posts. Rest assured the princess is still doing well and is as sassy as ever. So I thought I would share a few shots of her being adorable. Or being a pain in the ass. Or being adorable while being a pain in the ass.

Pants gets to run around the house and play every morning. And by playing, I mean running from her cage to another room to lay down some more.

Pants helping me with the Christmas decorations.

Pants’s delicately balanced piece of poo on a stuffed animal.

That girl. She’s cute and talented.

And lastly, Pants staying still long enough so I could get an actual shot of that sweet face.

I love that the color on her mouth looks like an upside-down heart. <3

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Last Night's Workout

I haven’t talked about Crossfit in awhile, but that’s still happening. I go three days a week, which means I spend five days a week in some kind of muscle pain. I’m definitely back to my normal strength since the installation and even benched a 115lb PR last week that made me feel like a freakin’ hulkamaniac.

That lasted an hour until I realized you can’t see my muscles because they are covered by a layer of delicious cupcakes and brownies.

I thought I would share last night’s workout with you guys since I haven’t posted one in awhile. It was on the easier side as far as Crossfit goes (super thankful for that because I was tired) and I didn’t have too much trouble getting through it (except for the knees to elbows – those are always hard). Well, today things hurt. They hurt a lot. So maybe it wasn’t as easy as I thought.

Substitute knees-to-elbows with another ab exercise, like v-ups, if you don’t have a bar to hang from. You can also fake the jump rope to make this into a no equipment workout. It’s a good one. You’ll feel those jump ropes after the lunges, I promise. Then, you’ll thank me after Thanksgiving because you didn’t turn into a stuffed turkey.

 

 

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10 Things about Me

I’m seeing a lot these “things about me” posts going around Facebook. People are writing novels about themselves in status updates. Get a blog people! Ain’t nobody got time for that. Still, it sounds like fun, so I’m going to do 10 things you may not know about me. But on a blog. Where it belongs.

1. I had an entire wedding planned in Orlando – chapel, venue, photographer, caterer, all of it – and then cancelled everything six months prior and went to Vegas instead.

Totally worth it.

2. I had never heard of brown recluse spiders until hubs told me about them a few years ago. Now I think every brown spider I see is a brown recluse and it freaks.me.out. He often says he wishes he never said anything. That’s how bad it is. So, whatever you do, don’t Google brown recluse spider bites. *shudder*

3. I’ve never been out of the United States unless you cound the Bahamas, which I don’t, because the Bahamas is just sub-Florida.

See? Sub-Florida.

4. I’ve known my best friend for 30 years and we still talk and hang out all the time.

We had to fight them off with a stick back then.

5. If I could move anywhere in the U.S., I would move to Reno, Nevada. I love it there. It’s the perfect mix of big city and small town life. Plus, mountains. Mountains, people!

Almost broke my ass snowboarding that day, so that won’t happen again. I will look at the mountains instead of falling down them.

6. I own at least 50 bottles of nail polish.

7. My first job was at a small movie theatre in McHenry, IL. My dad parked across the street, pointed at the Now Hiring sign, and told me to go get a job. When I mentioned that I was 15 years old, he told me, “Well then tell them you’re 16!” So I did, got the job within 10 minutes, and worked there the whole summer.

8. The first time I shaved my legs was for a Belinda Carlise concert, even though my step-mom tried to talk me out of it. Belinda is worth shaving legs for. #fact

9. I shower by candlelight in the morning because turning on lights right after I wake up makes me angry. I have a much better morning if I turn on the lights after I shower and brush my teeth.

10. Whenever I take a personality test, I always rate as an introvert, which no one that’s met me seems to believe because I never stop talking.

What is something people might not know about you?

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Shoe Drama

Shoe drama. I gots it.

I’m sure some of you knew this post was coming. Running shoes and I have always had a dicey relationship. I think I’ve found the perfect shoe but then it gets discontinued. Or I seem to find something wrong with the shoe, even if there might not really be anything wrong at all. Like my Brooks Ghost 5, for example. They are probably the shoes I should stick with because they never gave me a problem, they wear right in the middle which may mean I’m heel striking less, and they even lasted a crazy 700 miles.

I just can’t stand the sight of them.

Ugh. Denim blue. The worst. Those are dying to be worn with some khaki Bermuda shorts and a fanny pack. (Sorry, to those who wear these. I’m sure you look beautiful in them. Especially this girl.)

Lately, I’ve been alternating between the Brooks Glycerine 12’s and the Mizuno Wave Creation 14s. The Glycerines feel good and I like the look of them a lot.

But man, the flexibility is not there. They feel so stiff after six or seven miles like I’m in a pair of clodhoppers, so I’m hyper-aware they are on my feet. Do people still use the word clodhoppers? We should bring that back into common rotation. Try it. ;-)

The Wave Creations are decent, but they wear on the inner heel so I’m probably heel striking more. They make my feet look more gigantic than they already are but they’re cute so I forgive them.

Also, after about 11 miles, I feel like I need more padding in the forefront of the foot. These aren’t anywhere close to minimalists, so I’m not sure what that’s all about because I never had that issue during the two years I wore the 12s.

So basically, I can run shorter distances in both the Brooks and the Mizunos fine but they will not do for marathon training. So, I’m going to do what I do best: buy shoes I don’t really need right now but have convinced myself that I do.

Say hi to the Mizuno Wave Rider 17s (and to your mother) for me.

I can’t decide which color. Help!

I wore the 15s for awhile but they were a bit too narrow and rubbed on my pinky toe to the point where I was limping after a race. I’m willing to give the 17s a chance since they were completely redesigned and are freakin’ adorable. Adorable is important. When you look like I do after a race, it’s important to keep something looking good.

The 17s go on sale on December 4, so expect me to be bitching about them around the 18th. If they don’t work out, I’m giving up and going back to the Brooks Ghosts. Hopefully the 6’s didn’t change too much from the 5’s because I need this vicious cycle to end so I can go back to spending my money on less important things like rent and electricity.

 

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That Time I Drank a lot and then Ran a Race

Yesterday I ran the Baldwin Park Half Marathon – my 19th half and the longest distance I’ve run since February. A lot of poor decision making (on my part) went into this race, including but not limited to a three-mile run on Friday that I should have skipped, spending all day Saturday on my feet at EDC, drinking more drinks than can be counted on one hand, and skipping dinner.

But I’m a trooper, ya’ll. So when I got home Saturday night, I drank as much water as humanly possible, got a better-than-expected six hours of sleep, and ran a damn half marathon.

Michelle picked me up at 6:15 – right on time, I might add. *so proud* The girl is always at least a little late.

The race is only 15 minutes from my house. We even scored some major rock star parking by the start/finish line when Michelle went through a “road blocked” sign that was guarded by a police car. No fear, that one.

Once we parked, I realized I left my Garmin at home. I was also too busy sleeping in and forgot to make my standard PB&J, so I grabbed my next bad decision.

Cola flavor. Totally disgusting.

If you’ve been reading for awhile, you know I can’t eat anything with sugar (even natural) during a race. I ate one of those chews at mile 8, 9, and 10. Three is my limit. My stomach started churning after that.

I ran this race three years ago. It’s the same this year as it was then – small with a pretty course that is extremely familiar since it’s where I did a lot of my marathon training. I heard a few people complain that there wasn’t enough water on course, especially in the beginning miles, but I wore my new Camelbak so it wasn’t an issue for me.

Now for the race. Let’s just say that considering the night I had beforehand, it could have been a lot worse. So I am super grateful for the race I had. There was no timing on course, so I had  no idea what pace I was running and I didn’t see a mile marker until mile seven, which was annoying. Michelle and I leap-frogged each other for those seven miles, but as we know, the only time I ever beat her in a race is when she’s pregnant or has bruised ribs. We high-fived at the turn-around and that’s when I lost her. I ended up walking a good 20 minutes throughout (or more, I stopped counting after a while) because I was completely pooped, my left leg felt super fatigued while my right leg was fine (??) and the shoulder pain that started during my first marathon came back. (< — read that race review if you enjoy pity parties)

Things that didn’t happen include me pooping, barfing, or dying. So I consider this a major win. I came in at 2:21:54, not even a personal worst so I’ll take it.

Epic Sports Marketing puts on this race and I notice they keep getting better and more organized each time. They even had a really good spread of fruit, bagel thins, rolls, peanut butter and Nutella at the end.

Nutella!

I can definitely feel that I haven’t run that distance in some time. My legs are tired. Squatting to clean out the bunny’s litter box definitely takes more effort. But I’m glad I ran this one because I needed to get the miles in and they aren’t going to run themselves.

Next up is the OUC Orlando Half Marathon on 12/7. I’m using that race as a training run as well and then maybe I’ll get more serious about my races in January and March. I mean, at the least I’ll try not to be drunk for them.

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Back to Long Runs

I registered for another half marathon.

Best Damn Race

Actually, I have four half marathons coming up. I can’t remember what I’ve mentioned on the blog, so here’s my schedule:

To say I have not been training would be…well, that would be correct. I haven’t. I’ve been doing two 3-mile weekly runs but I haven’t been running long on the weekends like I should be. I have a really good excuse and I think that’s what counts.

beauty sleep

I knew the not running had to stop at some point. So last weekend I promised myself I would get back to long runs. About a month ago, I ran/walked 7.5 miles, which made nine miles sound reasonable without dying, so that was my goal. Good news. I lived.

Last week

I did those miles alone and I woke up early for them, thank you. Also, I was expecting a 10:30 pace, so it was way faster than I expected.

Besides a stop to take off my long-sleeved shirt because I thought it was cool enough for one of those (ha!), a stop to poop (you’re welcome), a stop to fix my crappy Garmin, and a stop at a water fountain, I ran the whole thing. Soooo I guess I didn’t run the whole thing. My point here is I did it and I have no idea how people train alone.

Yesterday, Michelle and I set out to do 11 miles. I even busted out my new Camelbak for the occasion. (Stole this picture from her.)

me and michelle

Two miles into our run, Michelle took a nose-dive into the sidewalk. I’m not exaggerating when I say she hit the ground hard and there was a lot of blood. (She got some pretty good scrapes including four stitches and some sore ribs. I’m sure she’ll tell you guys all about it in her next blog.) Because I’m a horrible person, I did quickly weigh the options of helping her up first or pausing my Garmin. Sometimes my decisions even surprise me.

Today

That’s right. I helped her up first for all of you who think I’m a monster. See? I do nice things sometimes. I even offered her CPR several times but she declined.

Anyway, Michelle’s husband picked her up. Since he had all the kids with him, I thought it would be easier to run the two miles back to her house instead of cramming in the car. I got back to her house, made sure she was ok, leveled up on caring points for the day, and headed to the gym to finish the last seven miles of the run.

I’m feeling ok on my long runs but I’m not ready to race yet so Michelle and I are using the Baldwin Park half this weekend as a training run. Tweet Michelle some good vibes so that her ribs feel well enough to run by next weekend!

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The Rest of DC

So, I need to back up a little. I already talked about all the good food during my weekend in DC but I didn’t talk about the fun. Because there was fun, even though Melissa hates fun. < — true statement

I landed in DC on Friday. Melissa met me at the airport and we took the metro back to her place. If there is one thing I don’t understand, it’s public transportation. So thankfully I have friends that are smarter than me.

Once we arrived at her apartment, someone there was very excited to see me.

I mean, really excited.

Roo has no clue that she weighs 50 lbs, that is for damn sure. She likes to drape herself all over you and get comfortable. I’m going to start doing that to my friends and see how it goes.

Friday we had a pretty big night planned, if I do say so myself: eat dinner in, have a few drinks, and watch Scandal. That’s how us old ladies do. But somehow, we still ended up at a bar around the corner from Melissa’s place where I had some hot whiskey/cider/cinnamon drink that was delicious.

Shortly after said drink, I found out that Pendulum was playing across the street at a place called the 9:30 Club. It hurt my soul that Melissa did not care that there is a concert venue, with big named artists, just steps from her place. I would make that place my second home.

We decided to go to the show if it didn’t start too late. Of course, it was sold out, which worked out just as well, because I was wearing capris and I can’t be seen at a concert in capris. (Don’t ask.) We went for a much more capri-friendly giant frozen yogurt which somehow made me just as happy.

Saturday morning, we got up early and took Roo for a hike on a really pretty trail in Georgetown.

That picture there is the closest I’ll ever get to fall here in the land of perpetual Summer. Anyway, the hike was an actual hike where we had to climb up and down things and hold on to tree branches so we didn’t fall. So, it was legit.

After our hike, Melissa and I stopped by my one DC request of the weekend. The film nerd in me had to see the Exorcist Stairs.

Yeah, they’re just stairs but it still made me ridiculously happy (and tired) to run up them. See? I’m easy to entertain. Just show me some stairs and make sure I don’t wear capris to a concert. Close to the stop of the stairs is the bar that was used in the movie St. Elmo’s Fire, so I nerded out on that for a minute or two and then we headed back home.

I’d love to tell you about Saturday night, but we didn’t take any pictures. Very unlike me. The night included about three different bars and way too many drinks. I’m sure it was a good time from my Foursquare check-in.

So that was the rest of my weekend in DC. The visit was too short but it’s nice to get away for a little bit and forget about work and being an adult. :-)

***

I hope you all have a safe Halloween! Did anyone dress up at work today?

 

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Race Review: Challenge Nation Orlando

Yesterday, Michelle and I were lucky enough to be invited to race Challenge Nation Orlando.

Challenge Nation is a scavenger hunt race where you have to complete 11 out of 12 clues by finding the clue and taking a picture with it according to the instructions. I’ve never done a race like this, but I really liked that the clues were tailored to the area and what was going on in downtown Orlando that day.

The race started at Wall Street Plaza. We got there in the middle of packet pick up and even so, there was no line and we got our bibs and t-shirts easily.

We waited around for awhile with our friends, Cheyanne and Ricky, who were also running the race. We were on separate teams but we ended up running the whole thing together and helping each other with the clues and took each others pictures.

Speaking of clues, if you like the Challenge Nation Facebook page, they post hints to a few of the clues the night before the race. Maybe we’re just dense, but the hints did not help AT ALL.

Even after completing the race, I still only get two of them.

Anyway, eventually we lined up to receive our clues just before the race started.

Each team had a captain that was responsible for getting the clues and getting the pictures verified at the end of the race. That was Michelle because she was willing and I was lazy. Such a trooper.

Michelle is holding out our paper with the clues to prove we weren’t opening them early. Finally, the race started and we were able to check out our clues, which basically meant we read about 5 of them and headed in their general direction and hoped for the best. Here are the 11 we completed:

1. Snap a pic with at least one teammate standing in a fountain or lake.

2. Find the Disney-donated spot and another challenge team and pose like rock stars.

3. Take a photo with one of the following: a clown, a traditional barber pole, a tricycle, a person wearing overalls, or any live pet animal other than a dog. Give a thumbs up in the picture.

This is the part where I have to admit we spotted the bunny and asked for a picture before we knew it was a clue. The lady was like, “it doesn’t count if your thumbs aren’t up.”  See? My love of bunnies paid off TEN FOLD.

4. Re-enact a wedding ceremony at a romantic spot along the waterfront. Include at least 2 strangers and a physical creative prop as part of your ceremony (we had a flower).

Aww. We’ve never been more in love.

5. Pose like fearsome pirates near a bust of Mahatma and force one of your teammates to “walk the plank.”

Apparently Ricky and I are the only one that got the “fearsome” pirates memo.

6. Take a photo with any of the presidents that appear on Mount Rushmore. (You can’t use currency, change, smartphone pictures, or draw the image.)

7. Find an out-of-towner (not from Florida) wearing non-sports related garb.

I just realized that guy looks like Chuck Norris. We should have gotten extra points for that.

8. Find the artwork paid for by Universal Studios and “do the obvious” activity with the rings in front of it.

That’s also how we look when dancing.

9. Buy/find a postcard, address it to someone on the team, write your favorite clue on it, and pretend to mail in any old style blue mailbox.

Our picture was super blurry so I won’t post that one. Michelle told me I had to write her a note on the postcard, so I did.

That was not part of the instructions and Challenge Nation collected those. Thanks, M.

On a side note, they do say that you don’t need anything for the race except a digital camera. We needed money to buy the postcard. I have no idea where you would “find” one and you are able to skip one clue, but I think having anything for purchase in the clues is a bad idea.

10. Find the building that was blown up in Lethal Weapon 3 (that’s City Hall) and then mimic the pose with the soccer player out front.

11. Find a certain intersection (we had to Google the clues to figure out the intersection) and draw your favorite thing about living in Florida with the chalk at that intersection.

Those are two people running. Most people drew the sun or water. *snore*

We came in 68 out of 178 teams. (Our team name was Fleetwood Mac Sex Pants ( <— name that reference), but Michelle doesn’t know how to write.)

I want to thank Challenge Nation for giving me the opportunity to run this race. I’ve never done anything like it and I loved it. It was silly and a lot of fun. Even Michelle, the Grinch of all “novelty” races, liked it.

I’ll definitely do this one next year and I might try to sweet talk the hubby into joining because I think he’ll like this one too. Smile

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Eat all the Foods

I had a crazy fun and exhausting weekend in DC with my love, Melissa. You may already know Melissa used to blog and that’s my chauffer. We were like strangers across a crowded interwebz that knew it was meant to be.

Before I tell you about the fun, I want to tell you about the food. Melissa asked me if I wanted to eat in (she cooks!) or go out to eat. In these economic times, I opted to save all my money for booze and dessert like the responsible adult I am and eat in.

Melissa likes to eat vegan as much as possible and I like to eat anything whatsoever, so it worked out perfectly. The first night, we had Vegan Thai Curry with chickpeas and rice.

I took five pictures of that until Melissa said, “no picture will every make that look good.” Noted. But it was delicious and I swear it took her 10 minutes to make. Girl knows what she’s doing in the kitchen.

On Saturday, we stopped for cupcakes at Baked and Wired in Georgetown.

These were some of the best cupcakes I’ve ever had, though I still think Sweet! is the best. I’m willing to continue eating cupcakes from Baked and Wired if they want to try to change my mind. I will sacrifice myself for the greater cupcake good.

From the left, that’s lemon with raspberry filling, pumpkin, and coconut. The pumpkin was the best but the lemon came in at a close second. The coconut was good, but less sweet than the others, therefore it gets a sad, lonely, third place.

Saturday night, Melissa made vegan paninis.

So delicious. That panini has grilled eggplant, roasted red peppers, spinach, chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, and vegan mayonnaise. It had some serious kick. My lips were saying “Hello!” by the time I was finished.

On Sunday, we went for our only meal out: brunch at Ulah (a last minute decision after our reservation at Founding Fathers was cancelled because of a power outtage). We may have had an extremely late night on Saturday, so we ordered an appetizer to get food to the table as fast as possible. We shared the smoked Gouda mac and cheese (and Melissa didn’t fight me when I wanted bacon on it. Best “vegan” ever, that girl.).

We’ll just call that appetizer the alcohol soaker-upper. I’m pretty sure I chewed it but I can’t be sure.

For brunch, I ordered my first ever eggs benedict – with smoked salmon instead of ham.

Since I don’t believe in eggs that are not scrambled or hard-boiled, this is a milestone for me. Runny eggs freak me out but I always think it looks so good when Melissa #2 gets it so I thought I’d try something new. I liked it! Cover food in enough hollandaise and I’ll eat it apparently.

I left for the airport about an hour after brunch and was still hungry somehow. (Damn you, alcohol!) So I picked up this tomato caprese panini at the airport.

It sucked, but I ate it all because some people in the world don’t get shitty paninis. I washed it down with a giant peanut butter chocolate chip cookie, which did not suck thankfully. Then I proceeded to sit on my ass the rest of the day. So it was the perfect day basically. Lots of food and lots of laziness, the way I like it.

That covers everything minus some froyo thrown in for good measure. Thanks to Melissa for being an amazing host and cooking for me all weekend. I feel all special when I get to eat food that’s not microwaved.

Love you, Melissa!

 

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