Amy – 0, Netflix – 1 Million

Remember when I said last week that I’d be posting more that same week? Clearly that was a lie, as I’m just now getting back to blogging. How can I be so busy, but at the same time, so UN busy?! Had a snow day on Monday and while I cooked and then cleaned the kitchen, I finally gave in and gave Scandal another try. BAD IDEA. Now I only want to watch Scandal. I’ve realized that I have a Netflix problem. I don’t want to read anymore, I just want to Netflix. I have like four half read books on my bed side table, they vary from informational, serious, comedy, and romance. I couldn’t get through any of them, and I blame Netflix, for making available to me horrible non original fluffy characters making bad decisions any time I want to get my fill of that nonsense (always). Because clearly it is NETFLIX’s fault that I have no willpower, and not my OWN fault…I think I need to re-prioritize.

So, let’s talk goals! My goal is to finish one of those books before the end of the month. That gives me a little less than two weeks to bang out a few hundred pages of reading. I’m a pretty fast reader, so as long as I can keep myself away from the pull of cheesy love stories, hot boys and girls making unrealistic decisions, and silly high school drama, I should be alright. You know what isn’t a silly show? Friday Night Lights. You want to know why? The husband and wife on that show are AMAZING. I want to be them when I grow up. (Cause I’m still a youngster)

Oh, exciting news! (to me at least) There is another challenge starting on Monday at the gym I go to. (Best gym ever, I seriously will talk to anyone who will listen about how awesome my gym is, I’m pretty sure people think I’m obsessed weirdo. But seriously…my gym beats your gym in awesomeness) So I’m not entirely sure what the challenge entails, but I get real into challenges. Any extra motivation to get my ass outta bed at 6am is DEFINITELY needed. This morning was rough, I lazed around too much, and by the time I got to the gym, I only had about 30 minutes to get in a good workout, so I chose 50 vested burpee jump pullups, 600 meters on the rowing machine, and then 4, 3, 2 and 1 floors of stair sprints. It sorta sucked. And by sorta I mean: I effing hate vested burpees.

What has everyone been eating lately? Cause this past weekend I went off the deep end of bad eating. Like I dove into the abyss of the ocean and sank to the bottom, that’s how bad. Pizza bad, and not gluten free pizza…gluten FILLED pizza. Chris got mad because I ate all the cheese off most of it, actually, and left useless dough. When you’ve had a few wine spritzers and it’s time to order some tipsy snacks…and pizza is the only thing available…it’s hard to say no!

We did do some useful chores this weekend, though, like moving our office out of our guest bedroom and down into the basement. We have a small townhouse, so doubling up on rooms is unfortunately a necessity. I seriously don’t know what we are going to do when we eventually have a child and have to put all that crap somewhere…we have NO MORE ROOM. Gonna have to put that child on the deck I guess…babies like the outdoors right??

Here are some pics of our moving this weekend. And of some yummy snacks!

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What a helpful wife I am, taking pictures at a time like this! In all seriousness, I didn’t have to gym that day, because it took all my strength to help get this EFFING CHAIR up two flights of stairs. It got wedged multiple times, we had to take the railing off, and FYI when you move a recliner…it WILL recline mid move and smash you into the wall or in the face! But look how pretty the basement is now!

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Now some of you may not know, but I fancy myself a pretty good cook. Baking, on the other hand…I’m real bad at. Mostly because I don’t like recipes and I enjoy just throwing things together that I think should go together. This doesn’t work with baking, because baking is like science…and I bet you can guess how good at science I am (BAD, just like math) So, the blueberry muffins came out real well, but the gluten free chocolate cupcakes were only so so because I ran out of honey so they weren’t sweetened. I’m fine with that because I don’t like sweet stuff, and the coconut flour adds some sweetness anyhow, but I’m pretty sure anyone else would have complained. The masterpiece of the weekend was my chocolate Guinness cake with Bailey’s cream frosting. Chris said it was awesome, but I didn’t taste the cake. I did taste the frosting, though, which was ridiculously sweet (maybe it was the whole box of confectioners sugar I put into it). But it did taste like Baileys, so that was yummy. I did bake the cakes at 100 degrees higher than I was supposed to…I blame our crappy old oven(it was totally my fault)…but they still came out not charred and edible. Next culinary experiment: homemade coconut milk ice cream.

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“Everything in moderation” … most annoying phrase ever

I follow a LOT of fitness gurus and fanatics on Facebook and Instagram (and Twitter, but I don’t really understand how Twitter works, so I don’t really go on there very often). I really enjoy the inspirational posts, the workout ideas, the dedication they have towards living the healthiest lifestyle possible, and especially their attitudes about themselves. They really tout the idea of being happy with who you are, and not to work out and eat healthy because you hate yourself, but because you LOVE yourself, and want to be the best you can be. A good message for all, because it is so easy to forget what you’re working towards, and get down on yourself.

However…if I see #everythinginmoderation one more freakin time, I may flip out. I’m down with #livinthefitlife, #fitnesslifestyle, and even #fitandfab…but seriously, something about Everything In Moderation makes me want to throw things. Probably because the things I should have in moderation (cheese, wine, pizza, fried food, chips, rice, nachos, all dips known to man, everything that goes out in cute little bowls and on trays at parties) I want to eat in the opposite of moderation. I want to crush that shit. Picture a dog finding a real gross dead animal and rolling around in it in ecstasy. That’s what I want to do to that vat of spinach dip. Or queso. Come on people. Sausage queso dip with Fritos…who doesn’t want to get all up in that. (my stomach, that’s who)

Just wanted to throw that out there. It’s so easy to paint a picture of what an amazing person you are via social media these days. The “I’m going to the gym, yay!” status on Facebook, the, “Look what healthy food choices I’m making!” pics on Instagram, and if I understood Twitter, I’m sure I’d see, “Look at the workouts I’m currently doing!” tweets and twitter pics (is that a thing? I think so…) I’m totally guilty of this. In fact, I have some pics from a workout on Saturday I’m totally going to post. Because I like posting that crap. Because I know you’re interested…yup, you know you are too.

Point is, sometimes it’s easy to feel down on yourself because it appears via social media that everyone is living this perfect life. And I’m not just talking health and fitness. Just life in general. You don’t see many statuses about feeling sad, being jealous, being insecure, feeling like a fatty, making bad choices, etc. (and when you do see those posts, it’s just uncomfortable, come on people, stop it. Stop being passive aggressive online. We aren’t in high school anymore and this isn’t your AIM away message. ) So, I wanted to blog about this because I think it’s an important thing to remember. For every LOOK HOW AWESOME MY LIFE IS status, post, tweet, instagram, etc, there are a ton of moments that person isn’t posting about. Yes they have beautiful children, but shit it’s hard to be up with them all night and then go to work. Yes, they got a new job and are making twice what you do and get to shop at Whole Foods without batting an eye, but they also have stress out the wazoo and work all the time and then have to deal with lines at Whole Foods (another huge dose of stress right there). Point is, nobody’s life is ever as badass as it appears (except for mine, clearly) (kidding, duh) and everyone has their own set of issues, setbacks, problems, you name it.

Here are some of mine!

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On Saturday morning Emma and I did a workout called The Gauntlet…it’s as fun as it sounds…wearing weighted vests. I seriously felt like death the entire time, it was awful, one of the worst workouts I’ve had in awhile. Clearly I need to do it more often. What isn’t pictured here is me lying on the ground gasping for breath after hitting my head on the ground during a burpee. I basically threw my face into the ground. #fitandfab

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#Everythinginmoderation…like drinking more than 5 drinks at a bach party, right? (sad face for how I felt Sunday morning) That’s my kind of moderation right there. Also, just a side note: I hadn’t started drinking when the pic on the left was taken, that’s just my real life face. This night was amazing and totally worth disregarding the phrase from hell. I love my friends 🙂

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This isn’t an example of anything bad in my life, I just wanted to show off our friend’s new nursery that Chris and I painted on Saturday! Isn’t it pretty!? #Schoedelpaintingrocks Chris and I have amazing friends that we trade odd jobs with. They help us, we help them, neither of us pay a dumbass fix it man. Works out. And then we eat snacks together. What’s not to love. Seriously, I have the best friends ever.

More fun posts later this week. Prepare yourself.

Building Furniture & Avoiding Snacks

I’m writing this on my new tablet! Very exciting. Since Chris switched positions at the beginning of the year, I haven’t had more than one minute on our computer, so it was sorta conflicting with my goal to blog more! A tablet seemed like a good investment. Plus, they are awesome!! It was hard to choose one, though…why the eff are there so many kinds!!? And they literally all seem to do the same crap. So, how did I choose? Went with Google’s tablet!! Duh, Google rocks. Now where is their self driving car!?

OK, anyway, back to the point of this post! To talk about me! Just kidding!! (Sort of…) So since my Whole30 (30 days of deprivation from awesomeness), I thought my eating and drinking habits would sort of go back to normal…like cheese, wine, pasta, Mexican food to the face 24\7…(don’t worry, I’m kidding about wine 24\7!) However, I haven’t been doing any of those things. Granted, I have been having some “bad” things, but nothing like the cheese overload I envisioned doing every day of my Whole30.

In order to stay on track I’ve had to keep myself busy. Avoiding temptation is effin hard! Especially when someone leaves a box of wine in my fridge!!! Ah. Its always there. Calling my name. Hey Amy, drink me, I’m so tasty mixed with seltzer! Ugh. So what does a girl do to avoid a box o wine calling her name? Build furniture with her husband!

Check out our handiness!

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Kitten was helping us with our measurements…

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Building before the storm hits!

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Finishing touches and final product!

Not so bad for first time builders, right?!

Another challenge is about to start at my gym. This means I’m about to get REAL competitive…I love challenges!! This one could get dicey…apparently they count how often you’re at the gym (so clearly I have to go every day) and we are going to have to use that dreaded scale that measures body fat. MY ENEMY.

Who’s excited?!

Whole30 Results/Review/Lowdown

THE RESULTS ARE IN!

That sounds real official doesn’t it? Well, I’m not that official. When you take the Whole30 plunge, they recommend you take before and after pics, as well as take before and after measurements. Well, I kept saying I was going to do that……and now I’ve finished, and I never got around to doing that…sorry for being so lazy. I really like before and after pics…of other people…before and after pics of myself…that just sounds awful. I also kept saying that I was going to use the fancy dancy scale at my gym, that measures your body fat perectage (1. how does it really do that, and 2. gross, I don’t really want to know)…but I didn’t do that either. I know, I know – I suck. But shit son, I was busy holding myself back from taking a bath in a bucket of wine for 30 days!

Anyhow, before we get into before and after shenanigans, I want to point out that before and after weight is NOT what this is all about. (yes, I lost weight, YES, I’m happy about it, duh). As I talked about in a previous post, completing this elimination diet was mostly so that I could tame my stress and anxiety bad eating habits (hello tub of pasta and multiple hard ciders, I’ve had a bad day…) and create a healthier relationship with food. I’d love to say that I’M 100% CURED and will NEVER stress eat again!! But who are we kidding, that just isn’t the case. On the plus side, post Whole30 I am so much more conscious, of WHY I am eating. Am I really hungry?? Or am I just being a blob on the couch and associate couch with face stuffing?? Do I want that alcoholic beverage because I enjoy it (who doesn’t…) or because several insurance companies hung up on me before 11am??(probably this option).  It’s good to be aware of when and how and what you are putting into your body, and HOW IT AFFECTS YOU.

Here’s where my results get real interesting. During my Whole30, I felt amazing 100% of the time. I had one day where I thought I might be getting a head flu, but other than that I felt amazing. LITERALLY as soon as I jumped off the Whole30 train into the “normal food” world again…I felt sick. Tuesday night was my first foray into cheese, Wednesday morning I could barely make it out of bed. Over the weekend my parents visited, and with them came boxed rice mixes, fried food, wine, and more mexican food. OMG everything tasted amazing. Thing is, I felt awful almost the entire time. My stomach freaked the eff out, and couldn’t handle it at all. I’m going to go ahead and say with a high level of certainty that I have stomach sensitivities to dairy and gluten for sure, and that drinking alcohol is just CRAPPY for you, but how is that surprising…I can also say that eating anything processed, out of a box, with ingredients I’m unsure of, will result in a sad tummy.

I’m really happy that I’ve given myself a chance to see what a difference it can make to avoid these foods that are so horrible for my body. Before I used to just say, “oh well, it’s worth it.” But now with this perspective, I’m beginning to go back on this way of thinking. Sometimes, it IS worth it. Mimosas with girlfriends on a Sunday = worth it. Nachos and beer on a Friday night for no reason = not worth it, and will also ruin any Saturday activities I have planned (farmer’s market!)

Now, as far as weight loss/inches lost/pants size down/I feel awesome about myselfness: I lost 12 lbs, I lost inches but since I didn’t measure myself I have no idea how many but it just feels that way, and I lost 2 pants sizes. WHAT UP. I went shopping for new skinny jeans pronto, cause those are just REAL convenient and cute I’ve decided. I know, they’ve been popular for a long as time, but I’m behind the times, always, with fashion, so give me a break.

Here’s a pic of a REALLY non Whole30 thing that I indulged in over the weekend, as well as the new hutch my dad built for Chris and I!! Love it so much! The Coronita did NOT sit well. But holy moly was it tasty.

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Whole30 DONE, (face plant into plate of cheese)

As of last night, I officially finished my Whole30!! I was pretty excited, and basically went face first into a heaping plate of cheese enchiladas, which were accompanied by a few hard ciders. What? Can you blame me? A month without cheese and alcohol…I was clearly deserving of these things.

Let’s do a recap of my 30 days…since I didn’t keep the blog updated AT ALL! I really am trying, but every time I get the computer all to myself…I start watching some crap show on Netflix (have you seen Pretty Little Liars?? DON’T WATCH IT! IT IS SO BAD…and by that I mean I love it and can’t stop watching it….it’s a problem).

Anyhow…recap:

I got a lot of “sooo what are you eating during this thing…??” Here are some examples of the yumminess I consumed:

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Yummy avocado stuffed, bacon wrapped, jalapeno peppers for Super Bowl snacking

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The beginnings of a roast that would end up braising in the crock for the whole day.

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Check out that steam! Beef chili with broccoli and pineapple thrown in for extra goodness.

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Even kitten wanted some of these wings…bad cat

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Sugar and nitrate free ham, baked with a spicy mustard sauce, along with some zucchini fritters I fried up.

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Post workout, pre grocery shopping breakfast from the Wegman’s salad bar. I wish I could live there.

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Plates picked dry after a tasting of different meats and veggies at a paleo author’s book release party in DC…yes there are fries, no, I didn’t try them. Heard they were good though!

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Breakfast of champions…few eggs scrambled with some of the ham from before, and green veggies. YUM

During these 30 days it wasn’t all smooth sailing…especially when Chris went away, and I was alone in the house for a weekend…alone in the house to me usually means: if nobody sees you eat it then it doesn’t count….so I had to find things to occupy my time so I wouldn’t order a pizza or go out and buy wine!

So I redid some furniture!

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Then it snowed…

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It was sad having a 5 day weekend that was awesome snack and booze free, so again, I had to find things to do to occupy my time. Like making macaroons that I couldn’t eat, and brushing kitty…which was a dangerous job…that cat can swat.

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When I went out with friends to a bar, I did a lot of this: (hint, there’s no alcohol in that mug)

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So that’s the sum of my 30 days! A lot of eggs, meat, and veggies.

I’m working on another post that will actually delve into what I learned, what the results were, etc…(Preview: the results were awesome)

 

Yes, I’m doing the Whole30, No it’s not a diet fad, Please stop talking

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I was inspired to write this post after reading this blog post, which is really just a rebuttal towards yet another article, which can be found here (an article from Yahoo! Health…), regarding health and wellness…there are a LOT of opinions flying around out there, it’s hard to figure out who’s “expert” advise to follow these days…(Although, if you are getting your health advise from Yahoo! Health…maybe don’t)

Anyhow…here’s my NON expert opinion, because I have an undergrad in photography, a master’s in business, and have not become a scientist overnight. (although wouldn’t that be badass)

I’m on day 13 of the Whole30 right now (What the heck is that? click the link). At over 1/3 of the way through the 30 days, I’m feel amazing, and I’m facing down some serious stress eating demons that are incredibly unhealthy. And yet, when I tell people about what I’m doing, most seem to jump to the same conclusion. “That’s real dumb to eliminate all that stuff just to lose weight,” or “It’s not healthy to eliminate all that stuff just to lose weight.” Well, if I was just trying to lose weight was my goal, I might not be as restrictive, but that’s not the ONLY reason there is to eliminate items from your diet. I have sensitivities to gluten and dairy (and possibly other foods that I would never know about if I didn’t eliminate them for a month, and then reintroduce), I have anxiety which is heightened by putting certain foods into my system, and I have serious stress eating habits where I go straight for wine, cheese, and carb dense foods whenever I’m stressed, angry, etc.

Not only is the Whole30 about living a healthier lifestyle, it’s about putting things into perspective. Putting into perspective when you’re really full, putting into perspective why you eat what you eat, putting into perspective your relationship with food, putting into perspective how certain foods affect your body, and whether or not it’s worth reintroducing those items back into your diet after the 30 days.

What do I mean when I say relationship with food? Picture this: I’m having a bad day at the office on a Friday; my staff is being lazy, a few difficult patients call and yell, and I sit on hold for an hour with Carefirst, only to have them hang up on me (True Life: I’m a Mental Health Clinic Manager right there). So what do I do when I leave work? Head for a bottle of wine and stuff my face with anything that involves carbs and cheese (think nachos, pizza, mac and cheese…even whole grain, or grain free version of these items, still bad news) Having these items reduces my stress temporarily, and I feel way better. Woo! So glad that day is over and now I feel better! Then comes Saturday morning. I don’t get a hangover anymore because I’m old and lame and probably fell asleep after two glasses of wine at 9pm, but having the alcohol heightens my anxiety, so I’m super anxious when I wake up. Also, having consumed gluten and cheese, I feel bloated and gross. The gym will not be fun this morning. After the gym, I still am not feeling like myself, and in order to feel better, I know eating something “yummy” (i.e. addictive/associative with feeling better) I go straight for more carbs/cheese. Getting a picture of the vicious relationship I have with food? The definition of a love/hate relationship.

Now I realize a lot of people just don’t have this relationship with food. I’ve talked to people who say they only eat because they get hungry, but they don’t really care about eating…WHAT?! I don’t get you, insane person, but I wish I had some of that in my system.

Now for food sensitivities. I know, I know, being gluten free is “all the rage,” right now, right? Actually it was only recently that doctors began to be able to diagnose gluten sensitivities, (straight outta my GI’s mouth, I’m not a fact maker upper), and so it’s reasonable that there are more folks out there who are attempting to avoid gluten these days. Even people (me) who don’t have Celiac Disease can have what is called Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity (I call it, You Have a Shitty Tummy problem). Whereas in the past the medical society would say, hmmm you’ve got IBS, they can now narrow down what foods might be hurting your system, by having patients go through elimination diets (Like, for example, the Whole30).

It is for the reasons explained above that I’ve committed to the Whole30, and that I truly value the experience that it is giving me. So, if you encounter somebody who is attempting to conquer a Whole30, or something of the like, don’t criticize, or judge, or tell them what their doing is unhealthy. It’s not your place, and chances are you don’t really know what you’re talking about (if you do, then by all means, I like chatting about these topics!), and on top of all that, it’s not super supportive to approach somebody’s goals in that manner…makes actually completing the 30 days even harder when people aren’t supportive. Maybe try, “Sweet bro, let me know how it goes,” or “Right on, girlfriend, good luck!” Although you may feel more comfortable using less lame language in real life.

St. Charles 10 Miler

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This race was HARD. I think part of that was most likely due to a few unfortunate factors combined…

1. I hadn’t really been able to eat much the week before.

2. I hadn’t really been MOVING much the week before.

3. I HATE running in any heat (which is why I signed up for Tough Mudder Virginia Beach on June 8??? Sorry team, I should have mentioned what a wimp I am in the sun!!!)

4. I dislike running up hills just about as much as I dislike running in the heat…and there were many of these:

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This picture doesn’t do the hills justice…I was unpleased! (Yes, I used this blog as an excuse to stop and take a pic!! Like I needed an excuse for a break…) I definitely had a few moments at the tops of hills where passing out seemed imminent…but thankfully, I was able to power through and finish. Yay for finishing, although NOT my best time for a 10miler at all. Oh well, I’ve got two more lined up for this summer anyhow 🙂

On Monday night a friend and I planned a healthy dinner night, which was a lot of fun. She made curried sauteed chicken with spaghetti squash, and I made meatloaf and green beans.

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Everything was SO GOOD. I started buying grass fed beef from Evermore Farm and it is amazing, plus I feel good about eating it. Seriously, if you can spare the money, it is a great investment. If the additives in commercially sold meat isn’t enough to turn you off of it, then the treatment of the animals might change your mind 😦 Eat happy animals!! They taste better, for sure.

Here’s a pic of my workout buddies from this morning! I did 3 sets of:

10 pull ups (ok so I can do 1 full pull up with a jump start and then 9 hanging pathetic 1/8 pull ups)

10 push ups

10 tricep dips

10 bicep curls

10 tricep extensions (think this is what they’re called…)

5 lateral raises (this is pathetic, I know, but 10lbs is heavyyy!)

10 rotational dumbbell presses

Not so bad for a get up too late to gym it so have to work out at home workout!

 

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