Tuesday, March 30, 2010



I have been sitting at 666 posts for a few days, and though I really don't have much to write about, I decided I need to post because it was getting a little creepy seeing that number. ;-)

Probably not a surprise to anyone who has been reading this blog for a while: I used my trip to Las Vegas and lack of fresh foods in my house upon my return as a convenient excuse for slacking on the healthy eating and exercise. Good choices have gradually become fewer and fewer, to the point where I ate two bowls of blue corn tortilla chips with guacamole after work last night and three Girl Scout cookies (Tagalongs, my fave) after a healthy dinner.

I have been walking the dogs nearly every evening, so I have not been totally inactive, but I haven't been doing anything that actually elevates my heart rate into an aerobic range since before we left on our trip. . . ten days ago. I am totally off the wagon with my Pi.lat.es; haven't done the DVD once since Mom arrived the first week of March.

Also not a surprise: my energy level and mood have been for sh1t the last few days due to crappy eating and little exercise. When will I ever learn?

I really haven't got much else to report. I did have a good, relaxing weekend. We took my CASA child M to a spring training game on Sunday, and she enjoyed it, especially getting autographs before the game and running the bases afterward. I am volunteering on the "Woof Line" (general information line) for the boys' rescue organization this week, and I have already had more calls in two days than I did during the whole week the last time it was my turn to check the Woof Line.

Besides my sloth and work, Mom is still here through the day after Easter. We have enjoyed her visit (MM often comments on how much easier a houseguest she is than my dad and stepmom) and will be both glad and sorry to see her go. Sorry because we will miss her, and glad because we will once again have the house to ourselves.

The weather here has been absolutely gorgeous of late! I love this time of year in Phoenix. A month from now, it will be getting hot. Ugh.

Thursday, March 25, 2010



I think it's normal to have days that make you question your life choices, even if only for a moment. (I know I had those days often when I was a hospital nurse.) I remember my ex-fiance SL used to say that when he was walking to court each morning, pulling a roller-bag full of files, he would look at the homeless people lounging on the grassy knoll en route and wonder if perhaps they didn't have the right idea and whether *he* was the "unfortunate" one.

Today was one of those days for me. I spent over six hours today in a mostly-useless deposition, while outside it is a beautiful, clear, sunny day. (Thankfully, we have a lot of days like this in Phoenix.) We didn't break for lunch, so my lunch consisted of some Corn Nuts and a 100-calorie snack pack of grasshopper cookies. . . very healthful. Instead of sitting in a conference room, watching the witness via videoconference in San Diego and listening to him and the other defense attorney arguing back and forth, I could have been hiking, or walking my dogs, in the nice weather, communing with nature.

Now that I am finally back in the office, I have two motion responses which must be completed before tomorrow morning, so I have at least three hours of work ahead of me, possibly more. It will be hours before I get to go home and see my husband, mom, and dogs (not necessarily in that order).

Oh well. I know that things can always be--and have been!--worse.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I'm back


I am back at work this morning following our extended-weekend trip to Las Vegas. The trip was good. The weather was nice, and we spent some time relaxing at the Mandalay Bay Beach. Our suite was awesome! My birthday itself was good: we spent most of the day at the Beach, and then went out for a delicious dinner at Nove' at The Palms, followed by O at Bellagio. Our seats at O ended up being in the very front row, and MM was pulled up on stage to dance with one of the clowns during one of their segments. (Too bad no photography is allowed; I would have loved to get a picture of that!) The whole show was great! I love Cirque du Soleil.

Monday we rode the roller coaster at New York/New York and took an outdoor gondola ride at The Venetian. Both activities I'd done before but really enjoy.

I lost a little money gambling, but no more than I'd budgeted to lose, and overall, the trip went just as we had planned.

While we were gone, I didn't work out at all, though I did get in a lot of walking (somewhat inevitable in Vegas). I did not stay 100% on plan with South Beach, but I did minimize my intake of less-healthy carbs, ate more lean protein than I might otherwise have done, and watched my portion sizes. I made it my goal not to ever leave the table uncomfortably stuffed, and I achieved that goal even at the buffet. It felt good not to waste vacation time in a "food coma."

I know I am a little dehydrated today, between flying and not drinking as much water as usual while I was out of my usual routine, so I am rehydrating. I have already downed my first liter of water this morning and am starting on my second. I have a healthy plan in place for lunch and dinner and will walk the dogs tonight after work. (I'll hold off on returning to the gym until tomorrow evening.)

The one tiny dark cloud over my weekend was that MM did a couple of things that really annoyed me. In fact, one of the things he did really pi$$ed me off, to the point where I really lost my temper. The thought crossed my mind after that incident that perhaps I am not tolerant enough to be married. (Yes, I have had this thought before, in prior relationships.)

It is a bit distressing that, after only 16 months of marriage and about 2 1/2 years together, my husband is already getting on my nerves. . . . to the point where I am giving serious consideration to just vacationing separately in future. Prior to this trip, I have enjoyed traveling with MM, so I'm not sure if his behavior has gotten worse, or if I becoming less tolerant, or both.

Oh well. Nothing MM did is a "divorceable offense," and he is unlikely to change (though he always claims he will), so I suppose I am just going to have to learn to be more tolerant.

Back to work! I must admit, I was kinda glad to have to come back to the office today in some ways. . . . .

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Random Tuesday


I started adding "good" carbs back into my diet on Saturday. Since then, I've eaten fruit, whole grain bread, and brown rice. I also had a piece of cheesecake at my in-laws' on Sunday evening. Between these two factors, the scale jumped back up to 215.something yesterday and has stayed there.

I am not overly discouraged because I am still consistently down from the 220 I was when I started South Beach a couple of weeks ago. Plus, past experience tells me that I almost always have a small rebound gain when I start eating carbs again.

I need to ramp up my exercise again. I've been walking the dogs nearly every evening, but with my mom here, I have usually been taking her along. Which is great because she needs the exercise, but it also means that I am walking at a significantly slower pace. . . . a pace that doesn't even come close to elevating my heart rate into an aerobic workout zone. (I've stopped even wearing my heart monitor because my heart rate stays too slow even for a "light" workout when I'm walking with Mom.)

I did go to the gym on Saturday and had a good 30-minute workout on the elliptical trainer. If I want to keep losing weight, I know I need to be more diligent about making these workouts happen more than once a week.

MM and I leave on Saturday morning for a 4-day trip to Vegas. While we are there, I am going to focus on better choices and portion control. I know I am going to eat pasta, and possibly cake, on Sunday, which is my birthday. I should have ample opportunity to exercise while I'm there.

Not much else to report. Ho hum, ho hum.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Downward trend


I was quite surprised to see this morning's number on the scale. We had dinner at Red Lob.ster last night, and while I avoided carbs (except for one small bite of a biscuit), my dinner was certainly higher in fat and in sodium than what I would normally eat if I had dinner at home. Truth be told, I was expecting to see the number on the scale go up this morning. Maybe this South Beach diet really works. . . .

I do perceive a little bit of weight loss in my midsection, believe it or not. I can tell a slight difference in the way the waistlines of my pants fit, too. I'm not sure I will be truly convinced that this is "real" weight loss until I get down at least 10 lbs from where I started, though. As of today, I am down 6.2 lbs from my start weight of 220, so perhaps in the next few weeks, I will see 210!

I am still slacking on the exercise front. This morning I woke up with a headache for the second day in a row (yesterday's was at 3:15 a.m.), and though it has subsided to a dull ache at this point, thanks to medication, I'm not feeling a trip to the gym this evening. I will walk the dogs for sure sometime after work, because they didn't get to go for a walk last night, but that will probably be it for exercise for me today.

My food plan for today is simple. I am meeting my mom at a nearby Mexican restaurant for lunch, so my goal is to avoid the chips and tortillas and get something with some good protein. I am going to allow myself to have pinto beans, though technically I shouldn't be having them while I am still on Phase One of SB. For dinner, I am going to bake salmon fillets and steam some mixed vegetables. I'll have some lowfat string cheese for a snack if needed. I'm also drinking lots of water in hopes that it'll ease my headache; I doubt it's related to dehydration, but it can't hurt.

It seems that all I've written about lately are my efforts on the diet and exercise front, but I am hoping that the accountability will help me stay on track. I find that I can usually stick with any diet/exercise plan for a few weeks; it's the longer-term commitment that often evades me.

P.S. I added a weight loss ticker today. At first, I put my usual turtle (or snail) on the ticker, but I changed it to a star in hopes of projecting a more positive attitude about my eventual success. ;-)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My husband says I'm cruel


I'm still rockin' the South Beach. It's gotten easier, truth be told. The exercise still hasn't picked up, but I am walking the dogs for 20 minutes each night, so that's something.

I woke this morning to headlines about the death-by-overdose of 80s star Cor.ey Ha.im. I must confess, he is little more than a familiar name to me. While I have no doubt seen a couple of his movies when they came out over 20 years ago, they were not among my favorites, and I don't watch reality television,

Even MM mentioned this to me as soon as he was up. (The first thing MM does every morning is check CNN on his BlackBerry, before he is even out of bed.) When I told him that I don't see why the death of a washed-up child actor who was a known drug addict rates as front page news, he told me that I'm cruel.

Don't get me wrong. I think that the untimely death of anyone at age 38 is sad. I just don't see why it's all that newsworthy.

Maybe I am cruel. I still don't really get it. With all that is going on in the world, Co.rey Ha.im's overdose is the most important thing that has happened thus far today?

Monday, March 08, 2010

Weekend re-cap

216.0 (too bad; yesterday's was 215.4)

I enjoyed my weekend, and my eating was pretty good. I ate a big and late-ish dinner last night, which I believe is the reason the scale is up slightly this morning from the day before. Nevertheless, I am down 4 lbs today from where I was a week ago, so I'll take it!

The weekend weather put a damper on my exercise plans. I did take the dogs for their walk Friday evening, as planned, but I opted to skip the gym on Saturday morning because I had planned a 3-hour hike for Sunday. That turned out to be a bad decision. Unfortunately, the weather turned rainy earlier than expected on Sunday, and my hiking plans had to be scrapped. I ended up getting no exercise on Saturday or Sunday. Bummer.

All in all, last week was a decent one for my exercise-wise. I fell short of my goal of 2 miles of walking, 6 days a week, but I did get in four 30-minute (or longer) workouts. Not bad.

It is still overcast and intermittently sprinkling here today. I didn't do a good job of planning ahead today and did not bring my gym bag to work; in fact, I haven't even emptied it since last week's single trip to the gym on Wednesday evening. So no trip to the gym today. Even if the weather clears up a little later, I'd say outdoor exercise is probably out. The ground is soaked and muddy throughout our development at the moment, so unless I stuck solely to streets and sidewalks (which I usually don't do), it would be a messy walk, especially with the dogs. Maybe I will brave it anyway; we'll see.

I also did not come prepared with meals and snacks today. I had a good breakfast: a mini-omelet with two eggs and salsa. Lunch is easy: I'll just get a grilled chicken salad from one of the several restaurants near my office that make good ones. I have a healthful dinner planned which will take me only a few minutes to whip up once I'm home: leftover salmon from the weekend and frozen veggies. Snacks will be more difficult, and I usually eat two, one between breakfast and lunch and one a few hours after lunch. At the moment, I am not at all hungry, but we'll see how the day goes. There is a Fresh & Easy a few minutes from my office, and I can go there for some lowfat cottage cheese or something if necessary.

I had a productive day yesterday. My mom came to my office and helped me clean up my filing, desk and credenza, so the office looks far neater and more organized than usual. I'm hoping that it will inspire me to be more productive this week! I also did three loads of laundry and put them away, in addition to a bunch of clothes that have been hanging around the bedroom for a while. For some reason, having my mom around inspires me to be more organized. . . . which is very ironic, considering that my mom is quite DISorganized herself. (My sister and I used to rib her that we were going to nominate her for an episode of "Hoarders." She's actually not quite that bad, but she is a clutterbug.) Maybe she reminds me of what I don't want to be like. . . . a cautionary tale, rather than a good example to follow. Who knows.

Duty calls, so I have to get back to work.

Friday, March 05, 2010


215.8 or 216.8 (depending on which step on the scale is to be believed)

All in all, I think I did pretty well yesterday. As I'd anticipated, I got in no exercise, but I did say no to the delicious boxtys and Irish soda bread being served at the Irish pub where we had dinner. . . both of which were very tempting. I had a huge salad with grilled chicken breast for lunch, broccoli and cauliflower with hummus for an afternoon snack, and for dinner, some seared Ahi tuna skewers and the innards of a Philly cheesesteak sandwich. Not ideal, but still low-carb.

I am out of fresh veggies at home, so today's lunch will be another salad with chicken. I will probably pan-fry some peppers and chicken sausage for dinner--yum!

I am already planning my getaway from work today so I can get home early enough to walk the doggies while it's still light. It's shaping up to be a beautiful day here!

Here's to the weekend!!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

I'll take it


Yesterday was not a perfect day, but I'll take it. I ended up eating a little bit of crispy tortilla strips which were in my southwestern chicken salad for dinner and two cheese sticks, and I only walked 20 minutes, or a little over 1 mile, for exercise, but considering I had a bad headache in the afternoon and my mom arrived around 5:00 p.m., I'll count it as a good day.

Progress not perfection, right?

The scale was down a little bit more this morning. Always encouraging. I am fully prepared to weigh tomorrow and see no change, or even a slight gain. I was prepared for that this morning, actually, and was pleasantly surprised that I still showed a "loss."

This evening may be a challenge. We are meeting friends for dinner at a pub, and I'm not sure what the menu is. Exercise is not going to happen either because of our dinner, unless it ends much earlier than I think it will and I can still get in a walk with the dogs before bedtime. Well, even if I skip tonight's walk, I still have the whole weekend to make it up. And I am planning on a 3-hour hike on Sunday, if it doesn't pour rain.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Firing on all cylinders


The scale shows down another pound today. This is all the more satisfying given that I started my period today, which usually means a temporary gain on the scale. Even though I know this is not true "weight loss," it's still nice to see a lower number. . . . makes me feel that I am getting closer to being under 200 (my immediate, short-term goal) all the time. ;-)

Yesterday was a pretty good day, diet- and exercise-wise. I followed SB Phase One to the letter, with one small exception: I allowed myself to add 1/4 cup of pinto beans to my salad at lunch. Just adding that little bit of "good" carbs to the meal helped tremendously; I felt full for nearly 4 hours, and I had no nausea and no energy slump. I ate every 3-4 hours throughout the day and never felt hungry, except when it was time for my next meal or snack.

In lieu of walking 2 miles, I did 32 minutes on the elliptical trainer at the gym. (Distance of 2.39 miles total.) I had a really kick-a$$ workout. . . . the kind of workout where I felt I could've just kept going for an hour had I wanted to. I kept my heart rate up near the top of my target range throughout and generally felt awesome. Nice. (On a side note: I am absolutely loving the Po.lar heart rate monitor I got for Christmas.)

Today is off to a little rockier start, as I had an early appointment and was running behind, due to waking up with a slight headache (second day in a row waking up with a headache). I've made the right food choices so far but will have to pick up lunch out somewhere. I have a couple of SB-compliant options in mind.

Exercise might be tricky as well, as my mother arrives this evening. Perhaps I will persuade her to go along with me on my 2-mile walk, though I know her pace is way below what would actually elevate my heart rate. Any exercise is better than none, though.

It feels really good to be in control of my eating again and to be exercising more regularly. Why do I tend to forget how much I enjoy this when I slip back into my habitual, slovenly ways?

Hope this trend continues. . . . and thanks to my sister for giving me the kick in the a$$ I needed to recommit.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Pizza, the temptor


I continue to chuckle at how much the scale lies. Really? I lost 2.2 lbs since yesterday morning? I think not.

My first day back on SB was pretty good. I had a little bit of an energy crash in the afternoon, probably due to the fact that I ate no carbs at all. (I'd slept great and had no other explanation for my slump.) I also felt faintly nauseated after eating 3 1/2 servings of vegetables at lunch (a HUGE salad). So maybe I won't pack that many veggies into one sitting again.

I walked for 34 minutes, burning 193 calories according to my heart monitor, but I think my distance fell slightly short of the 2 miles I'd planned. I'm not 100% sure because I haven't mapped that route or measured the distance.

I had one little slip: MM ordered a pizza for dinner, and I had two bites after eating my own dinner. It was thin crust with no toppings (on the bites I ate), so it wasn't the end of the world, but still. . . . carbs.

I drank my usual 2-3 liters of water. I had a massage yesterday afternoon, and my massage therapist commented immediately that she could tell I was very well-hydrated. I was peeing every 30-45 minutes there for a while during the day; far more than I thought was proportional to my water intake, which was curious.

We shall see how today goes. I am planning to hit the elliptical for 30 minutes this evening to knock out my daily 2 miles. I usually go around 2.25 miles in 3 minutes on there, so I can make up for the mileage I missed last night, too.

Monday, March 01, 2010



I restarted the South Beach diet today for about the 50th time (OK, maybe more like the tenth or eleventh.) I am helping my sister stay on track as she loses weight in preparation for her 20th high school reunion in June. Obviously I should be working on losing weight for my own reasons, but I'll take this as a motivator for now.

In addition to doing SB, we are going to walk 2 miles a day, six days a week. Keeping it simple. I may knock out some of my days as a 30-minute session on the elliptical trainer instead; we'll see.

My mom arrives for her annual visit on Wednesday evening. She will be here until just after Easter, so a little over a month. So I need to figure her into the equation, too.

Not much else to say about that. I'd need to lose exactly 70 lbs to reach a healthy BMI of 25 (150 lbs for my height of 5'5"). A doable goal, but a long-term one, to be sure. . . . clearly, I'm not going to get there in the next 2 months, or even the next 6 months.

Wish me luck. . . . .