Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The core successors

The core lifestyle modifications that seem to work the best for weight loss, at least for me, are:

1. Plenty of yoga: This lowers your cortisol levels and thereby improves insulin resistance and depending on the practice, will stimulate thyroid.

2. Whole foods: avoid weird things that don't look like food. Correlate how food makes you feel, not just in the 7 minutes it takes to eat your meal, but afterwards, does it spike your sugar? does it make you feel good?

3. Reasonable levels of cardiovascular exercise: some helps with metabolism, insulin receptors, and depression. But, it does not make up for junk food.

4. Be kind to yourself. Don't beat yourself up for being human and eating something that makes you feel poorly. This is not a time to raise your own cortisol levels by berating yourself. Its much more effective to reprogram yourself to handle the situation differently in the future. And, don't expect yourself to be perfect the first time, every body requires practice before they play Carnegie Hall.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

More, more, more

It would appear that I am guilty of not eating enough. Leigh Peel's diet ebook set my needs to be about 2200 per day and with a deficit at about 1800. Matt Stone over at 180 deg. is always railing against a diet with a deficit. He focuses very much on eating more, rather than less. Back when I was successful in losing the weight, I was eating pretty much as much as I could and skipping dinners every other day. Then, I went through a period of eating exactly the right amount for a weight loss, I did not gain or lose a single pound. I did that for four months. I was hungry and cold the whole time. So, I decided this year (Jan) to start cycling my carbs/cal again. I haven't really lost much. Its almost June. Gah! Ok. So, I bought Leigh's book last week and I have been reading Matt Stone's blog. They seem diametrically opposed, like thumbs on opposite hands. I have been doing a double low calorie day since the beginning of the year on Sat/Sun. I'm just not as focused as sometimes. I feel stuck, like I'm my own fluffy road bump. So, last week I started eating a little more, more carbs (some fruit, Matt seems to think its ok.) and a little more starch (controlled servings of cheerios.) I don't know that I'm any thinner, I'm retaining some water. I am still skipping dinner every other day. I felt like I was in ketosis last night. I'm focusing on home made meals with a variety of foods. The only processed food I'm having at all is an occasional Joe Joe, which is like an oreo from Trader Joe's post cardio workout. I'm resting well. I am having some dairy, I get some organic milk on my cereal and some days I have whole milk yogurt (plain, with some dried cranberries.) I did have a few rice crackers the other day. Thats where the water is from, cause of all the sodium.

I'm under some stress. I am putting together some new materials for my business. I'm emotionally invested in that. I'm dealing with it by writing out to do lists, practicing yoga, and talking with friends.

I seem to recall that the way I lost weight in the past was to eat a tremendous amount of food, exercise at high intensity, jog/walking, for at least 45-60 min. on an empty stomach and then practice yoga several times a week (lots of rapid breath.) That stopped working for a while when I was ill. Now, after having done that repair to my metabolism last fall, I was hoping that the cycles would work again. But, I'm wondering if I just wasn't eating enough and if I was doing enough of the cardio and the yoga. My rotation seems reasonable. What I don't have (and won't until the business thing is ironed out.) is a Polar that works anymore. I love my Garmin, but it doesn't have the same features as my old Polar. I miss my Polar. A lot.

So, as far as I can tell (just recapping) I need more fats, more vegetables, more healthy protein, more cardio and more yoga. I'm not doing much strength training. Leigh recommends the circuits. I might add one back into the mix. I just didn't feel like I needed more muscle.

So, that rotation would look like this:

Sunday: Rest
Monday: Walk/Run/Walk + short yoga
Tuesday: Steady State Step
Wednesday: Kick Box DVD + short yoga
Friday:Walk/Run/Walk + short yoga
Saturday: Circuit

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dagoba New Moon Chocolate

I'm enjoying a very dark square of chocolate with my breakfast. Chocolate is supposed to be really good for you. I prefer very dark chocolate. This one has a faint taste of chocolate liquer. I don't think any one would eat more than a couple of bites because it is very intense. The best way to eat it is to just let it melt on your tongue. Its not a cheap bar of chocolate, but it is a good bar of chocolate.

I wonder why they named it Dagoba? That seems reminiscent of Star Wars. Do they license that from George Lucas?

I give it 4/5 oven mitts. The after taste is a little strong. The coco is very dark.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mrs. May's Naturals are soo Good!

I just had a small package of the Pumpkin Crunch, and they are so very tasty. They are little clusters of pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and a little sweetness from rice malt and cane sugar. They are an easy way to get some extra calories without getting overly full. The little bag I purchased has two servings at 164 calories each, thats 328 per bag. They also have 8 grams of carbohydrate per serving (due to the rice malt/cane sugar.) and 1 g of fiber, bringing them to a net of 7 grams of carbohydrate or 14 per little bag. They also pack a walloping 18 grams of protein! Thats a really good thing. These would be perfect on a hike where you don't want something heavy to carry. They are also gluten free!! According to the package they are Kosher, wheat free, dairy free, vegan and contain no cholesterol.

These get 5/5 oven mitts.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Leigh Peele

I hope I spelled her name right. Leigh is a diet guru. She has a book and website devoted to the subject. She focuses on diet and exercise. I have purchased a copy of her ebook, The Diet Troubleshoot. I am going to give it a go. The difference for me, is that I am allowing myself some fruit and starch. She recommends a little more carbohydrate than what I normally eat. I had been on a low carb diet for a long time and when I was on induction, I actually gained weight and my body temperature took a dive. After that experience, I increased my carbohydrate intake to 45-60 grams per day. That has been fine. However, I really like having some fruit, it satisfies my soul, steel cut oatmeal does too. Leigh has a wonderful quiz that helps you figure out exactly how many calories are required for you in a day. My number was higher than I was allowing myself to eat. I seem to have underestimated what I needed. Last fall, I did a four month experiment where I weighed/measured all my eats and did everything by the book. I counted my calories. I calculated how much I burned in my workouts with my heart rate monitor. I always aimed for a deficit of 500 calories per day. I neither gained nor lost a single pound. Needless to say, I was bummed because I was actually hungry the whole time. And, my body temperature went down and so did my energy level.

So. I decided at the beginning of this year to increase my workout intensity and to go back to calorie cycling. I haven't really gained or lost from that either. Bummer, right?

Well. Back to the drawing board. Into the fray, once more.

Leigh has come to the same conclusion that I have, which is that workouts don't make you thin. She doesn't recommend high impact while you are trying to lose the weight. I wonder if she counts jogging? I don't know. I like to jog. It really helps with my lower body area.

Matt Stone says "Duck Fiets". Yeah. I say Duck Fiets too. My Fall 2010 experiment did not work. So, I am going to try Leigh's program. Its fairly simple. Moderate calorie deficit. Moderate carbohydrate intake. Keep the protein up. Use fat to slow stomach emptying and to keep your blood sugar even. She is all about staying honest with yourself about what you actually ate. In order to keep myself from dropping too low on the calories, I will embellish my meals with coconut oil. It stokes the metabolism.

So, how does this all break down? Well, for me it looks like this:

PreWO snack: 1/2 c. steel cut oats,
PostWO: 1 c. of berries, 1 c. of melon, 3 oz. of protein or 3 eggs, 2 tbsp. coconut oil, 1 c. raw spinach
Lunch: 1 apple, 1 c. raw cabbage, 2 c. mixed greens, 3 oz. protein, 2 tbsp coconut oil,
Snack: Banana and peanut butter or cream cheese
(This would only be eaten 3x/week on higher calorie days).
Dinner: 1c. cooked napa cabbage, 1 c. broccoli, 3 oz. protein, 1 tbsp. olive oil

Lower calorie days: 1576 calories.
High calorie days: 2100 calories.

As for my rotation, well, I'm going to focus on LSB workouts. I'm also going to make a point of getting my yoga most days of the week. Here is my workout breakdown (which must stay fluid to accommodate a varying work schedule.)

Sunday: AM: Cathe Friedrich Steady State Step workout (Like Cardio Hits)
PM: Yoga Today with Sarah Kline

Monday: Long Run, 60 min. no walking
PM: Yoga Class with Gary Bromley

Tuesday: rest

Wednesday: Run/Walk/Run 3 min. jog, 1 min. walk 60 min.

Thursday: Cathe Friedrich MMA workout
PM: Shiva Rae Yoga

Friday: Fun Run! Run to peak, then walk it down. + Desi Yoga Solar
PM: Desi Yoga Lunar

Saturday: Rest

I will start this program next week.