Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The "Rectangle"

My family is a little weird.  Ok, maybe more than a little weird.  There are numerous reasons I could give you to defend this claim but one truly stands alone.  Here it is:

Yup, we're some of those people.  The people who believe that the molecular structure of food is changed when you microwave it.  The people who believe that the nutritional value of food is destroyed when you blast it with waves.

Here is a conversation between my sister and my niece, age 3 (at time of conversation):
Niece: "Mommy, I hungry."
Sister:  "Ok, how bout some leftover such n' such?"
Niece:  "Yea, that's good."
Sister:  "Well, hang on, I gotta heat it up for ya."
Niece:  said w/ utter disgust "You aren't gonna put it in the rectangle (microwave) are ya???"

The hatred toward microwaves varies in my family by degree.  My mom, now the matriarch of the family, does own a microwave but it sits in her basement, unplugged and unable to do harm to anyone or anything.  I also own a microwave and it is installed in my kitchen.  I do not, however, use it even on a daily basis.  When I do use it, I'm usually nuking some boxed meal because I'm in a horrible rush and have to eat "something".  My sister, I believe, uses hers only slightly more often than I.

I know that as fitness buffs, meal prep and planning is of utmost importance for our success.  Often, this means pre-cooking and pre-portioning our food out for each meal.  Frequently, we eat at the office or on the run and it makes standing at the stove to warm up food seem like a real pain.  Here's why you should avoid microwaving that muscle building, life giving meal at all costs:  IT HAS THE POWER TO KILL YOU!  Microwaving food  actually alters the molecular structure of the food, it kills the vitamins and minerals; leaving you with a pile of dead junk to eat.  Please go to  to read about the scientific evidence that backs up what I'm preaching about right now.  Just know this, after all the prep you did, all the exercise you did, after how hard you've worked to reach your goals, you might be putting something healthy and nutritious into the microwave but the "product" it's giving back to you is hazardous to your health!  'Nuf said!  

So how can you avoid your microwave?  Here's what I do: if I've cooked something thoroughly in prep I just dump it in a pan on the stove and it's usually warm within 5 minutes.  For veggies I almost always use an electric steamer (more on this another day.  I couldn't live without my steamer.) which heats them nicely without killing everything in them that's good.  When I worked, I had a hot plate at my office.  Yes, it takes a little longer than a microwave but this way you get back what you put in, not some unidentifiable blob of nuclear mess!

Just remember:  you are what you eat!  You wanna be healthy, whole and glowy?  

Happy Wednesday, dear reader!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Weekend Musings

Another weekend has come to a close all too quickly.  We were more busy than usual with stuff for the kids but I still managed to fill my "fitness fridge" with all the yummy things I need to keep me on track thru the week.  Unfortunately, I sampled so many of my baked goods I had to have only asparagus and cauliflower for dinner to stay on track for my daily totals.  
Anyway, that being said, here's what I baked:
  • Jamie Eason's Carrot Bars
  • Mommy McMoofins
  • Carlee Q's
In addition I prepared:
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Brown Rice
  • Rice & Lentil Medley
  • Sprouted Mung Beans
I also have my usual pre-prepared grab and go snacks on hand, my energy drinks, protein bars, protein shakes, etc.  It was time to stock up on my favorite magazines as well!  So I picked up Muscle & Fitness Hers and Oxygen (plus the latest motivational issue).  Missing from my repertoire is Fitness Rx, as they were out. :(

As you can see, I'm set up for a successful week!  How exciting!  Stay tuned this week, you don't want to miss the recipes and "gear you gotta get" coming your way!

How do you prepare for the week ahead?  Do you plan for success or just wing it and hope it works?  How committed to your goal are you?

Happy Monday, dear reader! 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Roughly Wrapped Gifts

Yesterday, I discovered someone very special, Lisa Nichols.  She is AMAZING!  She is a life changer, a shaker-upper, an authentic champion.  I want to share with you what I "got" from one of her talks (see link above, please).  This is just my personal take on what she had to say.  You should listen to what she has to say for yourself and take from it what you need to apply to your life.  So without further ado, I present to you:

Roughly Wrapped Gifts

"Some motivation comes wrapped in sandpaper!"  (Lisa Nichols said that, not me.  I wish I had said it, but I didn't.) BUT here's what I have to say about that:  we fitness buffs know all about that.  Think about what it takes to really build the physique of your dreams.  Blood, sweat, tears.  We lift weights til we can't muster another rep.  We do cardio til our lungs burn.  We frequently eat things that "normal" people think are boring and tasteless over and over.  We drink water from gallon jugs and "pass" when our friends have a martini or a glass of wine.  These things make up the very fibers of the sandpaper that wraps our motivation; our dream physique.  Can I get a "Yes, YES!"?  (Lisa said that too.)  Lifting weights til our muscles burn is the sandpaper wrapping our motivation!  Running just one more cycle of HIIT before we jump off the treadmill is the sandpaper wrapping our motivation!  Eating what's healthy and wholesome while our friends have "cake" is the sandpaper that wraps our motivation!  The gallon jug of water????? Yup!  Sandpaper wrapping our motivation!!!!!  

Now-- there's something about sandpaper that I want to bring to your attention.  After a while, after you've used it a few times, it loses it's roughness!  Hmmmmmmm, did you hear that?  Sandpaper loses it's roughness!  It becomes smooth!  The grit wears down!  No matter how rough that paper starts out, once you've used it enough, it gets smooth!  EUREKA!!!  What am I so excited about?  What does this mean for you?  It means that as we  continue to unwrap our motivation (our dream physique) it will become easier.  The sandpaper will become soft and worn and we will be able to preserver with greatness.  We will adjust to and even begin to enjoy unwrapping our gift(s).  Someday, it won't be so rough.  

I am actually getting there.  To the point where if I don't exercise I get a headache.  If I don't drink my water, I get dizzy.  If I eat junk, I feel like junk.  My sandpaper is losing it's grit, this is becoming a way of life.  You know, it's almost as though the grit transfers from the sandpaper to us!  As we wear out the paper and become stronger we take on the grit of the paper!  It begins to protect us, strengthen us, reinforce us.  

So, what motivates you?  What are you trying to unwrap?  
How's your sandpaper, still rough or starting to smooth out?  
Where are you in your motivational journey?

Happy Friday, dear reader!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Says Who?!?

I'm on my soapbox again.  I kinda like it here.  ;)

I want to tell you that you can accomplish whatever you really set your heart to.  There will always be doubters, those who just can't conceive the level of greatness that you are capeable of.  They can't see themselves being great and this clouds their view of everyone else's abilities.  They think that being average is just normal.  That is sad.  Very sad.

Who says that you can't lose those last few pounds?  Who says that you can't get your degree and land your dream job?  WHO SAYS YOU CAN'T DO ANYTHING YOU SET YOUR HEART TO???

You might actually have an answer to that question.  There might be someone in your life who says that you'll never reach your goals.  There might be someone toxic who just can't see past the end of their own nose.  If this is the case, I am so sorry.  All you can do is love them and pray for them.  Meanwhile, you HAVE to decide that they are entitled to their opinion but you have an opinion too.  And your opinion is that you WILL succeed!  You can do all things thru Christ who strengthens you! (Philipians 4:13) 

In the end the only one who has any real control over what you accomplish is you!  So pull yourself up by your bootstraps and make the choice to succeed.  You can do it!
Happy Tuesday, dear reader!


Just a fyi to my readers:  I'm going to be playing around a lot with my layout and design until I find something I'm really happy with.  Be patient with me, I promise what I come up with will be fun to read, easy to navigate and above all WELL ORGANIZED!  Hang in there while I learn about the wonderful world of blogging.  I will continue to do regular posts, you just may notice little changes as I play around.  Thanks!!

Happy Tuesday, dear reader!

Monday, October 17, 2011

The "Fitness Fridge" & more...

Well... so I got most of it done.  Most of what I said I was going to do on Friday, that is.  I also accomplished all my baking this weekend, which felt great!  Now I have plenty of healthy, high protein foods at the ready, in my "Fitness Fridge", so that I can't mess up my meal plan.  Here's a list of what I baked:
  • Jamie Eason's Carrot Bars (dbl batch cause I can't keep my fam out of them)
  • Chelle's Work Out Bombs (See Recipe for Fitness on my blog list.  They r "THE BOMB"!)
  • Jamie Eason's Chocolate Protein Bars
  • Mommy McMoofins (a yummy breakfast muffin I created based on Chelle's Egg Muffins)
Also in my "Fitness Fridge" I have:
  • Energy Drinks (maybe when baby starts sleeping all night I won't need these so bad but right now you'd find me asleep under my desk w/out them!)
  • Hard boiled, cage free, humanely raised eggs (YES!  These criteria are important!)
  • Pure Protein Bars (pre-packaged so I can throw them in my purse)
  • EAS Myoplex Lite shakes (again pre-packaged so I can grab and go) 
What is a "Fitness Fridge" you ask???
This is my "Fitness Fridge"
A "Fitness Fridge"  is a dorm room sized refrigerator full of the foods a fitness obsessed girl needs to keep her on track.  The extras go in the "Fitness Fridge" (see above list).  The things that you add in to your meal plan in order to really kick it into high gear.  My regular fridge is where I keep all my fresh, whole foods that I use to cook family meals and such.  This week's stars are bok choy, daikon, and fresh beets.  YUM!

So I'm revisiting some goals this week. I've been a little lazy the last few weeks with my eating and I really want to get back at it.  My first goal is to eat every two hours.  Sounds like a lot, right?  IT IS!!!  And that is why I tend to slack on this goal.  I'm not always hungry every two hours and sometimes it actually seems like I shouldn't even be eating.  BUT-- if I remind myself of why I'm eating I can usually choke it down.  Why am I eating every two hours?  To train my body to trust me!  When you feed your body nutrient dense, low fat, high protein foods you are telling it that it's ok to let go of that extra fat it has been insisting you carry around.  It also tells your body that it's going to be getting plenty of protein so it needn't feed on that precious muscle you've worked so hard to develop.

Well, that's a lot to digest (ha ha) all at once so I'll leave you to chew on that. 
Happy Monday, dear reader. 

Friday, October 14, 2011

I'm sitting at the computer, just sitting.  My brain is a jumble of what I should be doing, what I could be doing and what I really am doing.  My son is busily completing a science lesson, my daughter is at school and the baby is taking her clothes off for the millionth time.  There are dishes to be done, laundry to be put away, baking to do and here I sit.  My husband once suggested that I might spend a wee bit too much time at the computer to which I noisily replied, "I have to do my research!".   

I can laugh at it now.  I was justifying my lengthy time at the computer by saying that I was "researching all things fitness".   True though it may have been, research does not burn calories, increase V02 max, or build stronger muscles.  Reading blogs of fitness gurus I admire and respect might be motivating but if you do it too much it makes your butt big!  And all the healthy recipes I print out do me no good if I don't make 'em.  I can look up workouts and exercises till I turn blue but if I don't actually move, what's the point???

So it's time to do something.  I have to start somewhere.  You see, I'm at quite a stand still.  Ok, maybe a sit still would be a better way to put it.  The hardest part of doing anything is always getting started.  Do you see what I'm getting at?  We all have to suck it up and just go for it!  What if we all just started "doing"? 

So here is what I'm going to do today (minimum):
  • Dishes
  • Put away laundry
  • Workout
  • Drive 2 oldest kiddos to their dad's house.  (3 hrs away)
I'll let you know how it goes!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

I think I need a bigger suitcase...

In my last post I mentioned that I need to rediscover my mojo.  Could be quite a journey to find it and I need to bring along the whole family without disrupting their regular daily lives. Hmmmmmm... let's see, what to pack?
  1. My Bible.  It's gonna be imperative that I not lose sight of where my character and priorities need to come from.
  2. My computer.  For obvious reasons.  :)
  3. Nutritious whole foods.
  4. My supplement cupboard.  Yup, I got a whole cupboard full!
  5. My workout room.  Yup, I got a whole room just for working out!
WOW!  That's gonna be one heavy suitcase already!  Perhaps I'll take my journey right from my own lovely little home.

You know, this writing things down is really good for me.  It's making me think and reminding me of just how much I have to be grateful for.  For instance... 

 I seriously really do have an entire cupboard FULL of "supps"!  So what the heck is my excuse for not taking them every single day???  How is it that they stare me in the face and I look at them and say, "No thank you "supps", I don't feel like taking you today."?  'Splain me that one!

I wasn't kidding when I said I have an entire room just for working out.  Right in my own home, directly beneath where I am currently throned I have: a Bowflex Extreme II, a Shredmill (thanks, Donloree :) an ellipitical, a trampoline, free weights, a stepper, a Fluidity bar, 2 Swiss balls, an enormous collection of workout videos and more!  Sooooo..... the million dollar question is: What the heck is my excuse for not using them every single day?????

OOOOOHHHHH I know, I know!!!  I don't bother to prioritize!  I am sitting on my duff and watching life pass me by.   WEll!  No more!  I tell you right now, here on this page:  "CARLENE IS GETTING OFF HER DUFF!"   (Sorry about all the caps.  The baby is asleep and yelling thru my keyboard is a great release.)  There will be success!  I will succeed!  I can be a good mom, a good wife, a good daughter, a good friend and still take care of myself.  I can do it and I will do it.  "I CAN DO ALL THINGS THRU CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME"!

Whew!  It won't be easy but I know that it'll be worth it!  Let's get started! 

    Wednesday, October 5, 2011

    Mommy Mojo

    (To be sung to the tune of "Oh Where, Oh Where has my Little Dog Gone?")

    Oh where, oh where has my mo - jo gone???  Or where, oh where can it be?  I used to have lots til I got all these tots... oh where, oh where can it be???

    Had to do some soul searching today.  You see, I need to redifine my goals.  I have had sooo many changes in the last few years that I kind of got lost in the shuffle.

    There's a long story (everybody's got one, right?) and I won't bore you with all the details but here's where I ended up:
    • Very happily married (thank you God!)
    • 3 beautiful, healthy children
    • Stay at home mom
    • Virtual schooling (it's kind of like homeschooling) my G & T 8 year old
    • My 2 year old is also home full time, minus the 6 hrs / week she goes to Montessori preK
    • My 7 year old daughter attends a public Montessori different from the one my 2 year old goes to
    Any mommy reading this blog knows that when these variables are calculated they will equate to CHAOS!  She also knows that maintaining any sense of self would be very difficult. 

    Here's where my journey comes in.  I need to set a good example for these children.  I need to show them that taking care of themselves is a priority, not a crime.  However, I can't leave them behind as I take my journey so I need to take the whole family!  I'm gonna have to pack carefully!

    Stay tuned...  the next few posts will be about what I intend to "pack" for the great journey I'm about to embark upon.  You're all invited too!  But you gotta pack your own bag, I got enuf to do!  :)