Monday, April 21, 2014

Post Easter and a Knee Pillow

Easter was a gift. Food was not an issue. It was not used as a treat, reward or punishment. An attitude of food as simple nourishment was the bedrock of our holiday. No one whined, least of all: me. The day after did not have me seeking to fill a mental 'want' of anything. I am in awe of how well it works since I stopped trying to control anything.

I am doing the 30 day plank challenge. I position a semi firm pillow in the space under my left knee because that knee cannot stand the stress of kneeling on the mat and floor when getting up or down. The pillow makes all the difference.

I am not supposed to kneel in church as per my orthopedist. I wonder if a pillow will make a difference on the kneeler? I might try that.

Walked over 3 miles today in a lovely breeze. The cool part of our Florida Spring is holding on for a last hurrah before the hotter temps move in. I am grateful I could take advantage of the breeze today.

Do you have any knee stories to share?


Saturday, April 19, 2014

Cadbury Re-post from 2011

I published this post in 2011. It is even more truthful today.

Cadbury Bunny - Cute Candy Icon or Sugar Pusher?

 I am willing to keep working to be aware of the triggers that can lead me away from the happy life I am enjoying today. I am aware how blessed I am not to be hearing the siren call of hurtful food (items or quantity) and I look forward to a very satisfying Easter.

I hope you are all well.


Friday, April 18, 2014

Side Benefit to Not Weighing In

Weighing in once a month has given a side benefit to my routine of  drudgery torture exercise.

When I weighed in every day I would sometimes occasionally more often than I thought, give myself a day off the sweat if the scale showed an exciting loss.

Without a scale to trigger that excuse of a response, I must rely solely on my workout-ethic to get me moving.

I am finding that (for me) this is a more honest approach to accepting responsibility for my actions each day. I get up and I exercise or I don't. The Scale Overlord is not responsible for my day.

Why did it take me this long to reach this place of mental and emotional health? I guess I was finally ready.

This is not a comment on anyone who has a different 'weigh' of doing things.

We are all traveling the same road together; we are just wearing different shoes.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

You don't care but this is how I order my Starbucks Drinks

Don't believe it when someone tells you something is sugar free. Ask to read the label on the product. The other day a barrista at Starbucks told me the light base used in their Light Frappuccino was sweetened with Stevia, not sugar. I said I wanted to see the label. First two ingredients on the LIGHT base were sugar and corn syrup (which is cheaper sugar). The barrista was blown away, (no, not killed), He was blown away-shocked because his managerhad  told him it was made with Stevia and he just never read the label before my request.

Maybe Starbucks has a Frappuccino base that is made with Stevia but it is not at all locations. I want to see that label. Maybe that base does not have sugar. Maybe they once used Stevia and then changed the recipe without re-training the staff. Maybe it is an urban myth. Maybe the cows will come home wearing Keds. Until I see it, I will be skeptical. Until I see the sugar free label for myself, I will continue to order my drinks as follows:

Coffee Frappuccino:
"Venti Coffee Frap with a shot of espresso; NO base, NO sugar, NO whip, three packets Splenda, blended twice (twice is because without the base, the ice needs an extra round in the blender)

Iced Coffee:
"Trenta Ice Coffee half-caff, NO Classic (which contains sugar and is put in all the iced coffee unless you request they leave it out), no sweetener, slight room for milk." - I like to add my own milk so I can control the amount and type. (I can also add my own Splenda or leave it out). Some shops don't carry the Trenta size. Then I order a Venti.

Hot Coffee:
Grande half-caff, no sweetener, leave room for milk."

Up until this January I was caffeine free. Caffeine always gave me palpitations. I was caffeine free for about 4 years.  Perhaps it was simply excess caffeine that caused it before because I have found that a couple of cups of coffee a day have been fine as long as I do not have them late in the day or evening. If I were to have a Quattro Expresso over ice you could expect me to bounce off the walls.

I do not order the light Frap anymore. That was made with skim milk and regular fraps with whole milk. It is an occasionally indulgence. If it helps keep me cool and out of the ice cream this Florida spring and summer then it is fine with me for now. If I start going out of my way for it (another term for craving) then I will have them make it with skim milk.

I like the coffee at Panera better but there isn't a Panera where I work.

At home recipe:
8 oz sugar free coconut almond milk, 1/8 cup sugar free coconut milk (if I have any on hand), 1 shot hot espresso OR 1/2 cup strong hot coffee, ice cubes -I use 10; splenda if desired: blend until ice is no longer chunky and drink can pour without too much clumping.

This whole post is about doing what I need to do today to maintain food integrity without insanity. If you visit a chain of any type regularly - what (if anything) do you do to be aware of what exactly is in your drink or food? If you don't do anything at all, tell us why. There isn't a wrong answer. We are all traveling this road together - just wearing different shoes.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Finished 30 Day Squat Challenge

Last month I found an app of a squat challenge, thirty days long. First day 10, second day 15, progressing up to 230 on the 30th day.

On Friday I did 250 (over achiever that I am) and completed the challenge. Because of my bad knees I was very careful with each squat and never fully dropped to the lowest position in a squat as I am technically not allowed to do squats if I want to avoid knee replacement a few more years. At no time was I in pain, or swollen. At no time did I bend or rise and go "ah-oh".

I didn't do this thinking it would make me lose weight, get healthy or find salvation. I did it to challenge myself to do something small for 30 days because I never thought I could get to 230, let along 250.

I am planning to start a thirty day plank challenge next.

What is your next challenge?


Monday, April 7, 2014

John Pinette: So Funny, but not today

John Pinette died yesterday. He was a talented actor, stage performer and stand up comedian. His routine "Feed Me, I'm Starving," is hysterical. Much of his stand up work was based on his love of food, awareness of his large body size and his disdain for slow moving buffet lines. To quote the man himself.

"Why are there incredibly long lines at buffets? At a buffet you serve yourself. You grab and move, grab and move . . . and then repeat the process over and over again. 
You know what makes buffet lines so long? Skinny people! They don't move. Skinny people look at the food and talk about it and try to make up their minds if they want to take some or not."

I was going to see him last year in October but the show was cancelled. He went into treatment for an addiction to pain killers. (a binge is a binge is a binge). I love his routines on Halloween candy, the Disney World in August, Italian food, Chinese food, Japanese food, France, Scotland, and Las Vegas. If you never heard them you should go over to You Tube or iTunes and watch/listen. He was very funny. His routines are still funny.

What is not funny is that the very subjects that made him funny are what ultimately lead to his death. His doctor said he suffered from heart and liver disease. No autopsy is being done. He was 52 this year.

I am so sorry he will never reach the point where he does a brilliant routine on loose skin, passing the buffet for the salad bar or the love/hate relationship with his exercise plan. If he had ever found a healthy solution for his morbid obesity he could have been even funnier. I wish he could have experienced that.

Rest in peace, John. May you find harmony with the skinny people in heaven.


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Practice Doesn't Make Perfect, it makes Better

Practice gives me a fighting chance. This is why the concepts of Patience, Presence and Practice are so necessary for me.

Because there are days and there are days. . . .

There are days when I need to forgive and it is hard or seems impossible. There are days that will require a calm, logical mind - only possible if I am also calm and sound with my food. I will not always know in advance when a day will require every banked asset I have. To meet what a day requires, I cannot leave my food sobriety with an IOU. I might find myself short-changed. I cannot pull from reserves of fortitude and faith if I've dropped them into a leaky vessel. I did that on and off all last year, never catching on that the leaks were winning.

This is why, even when life is skipping along without a care, I must practice putting spiritual food in my cupboard. After planning my food and accepting  wants are not needs, I accept my needs and gently re-direct my thoughts to where they can be something of value.

Because the day will most certainly come. It can come in tiny tearing heartbreaks five times a day. It could come in the name of a tragedy that could only happen once in a lifetime. That is life and I do not control it.

Those times are when I need to withdraw the insights that I put into my heart’s escrow. And I will need to call on my people — the unseen and the ones right in front of me — to help me meet the day.

You will be interrupted.
You will be called on to expand.
You will be asked who you are and why you are here.

This is why we practice.

Practice with me.