2012 Week by Week

Month: February, 2012

Week #9: Low carb

Everything I have done so far this year has been leading up to this week. I have wanted to go low carb, but I knew that if I jumped in the first week of January I was sure to fail. Now it is time and I’m more ready, but still kind of afraid of being hungry all the time.

Because it is Lent I am also off of red meat. I anticipate being very tired of chicken by mid-April.

Wish me luck!

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Menu week #8

We were busy during veggie pickup time today so I’ll be picking them up on Tuesday. As a result, this menu is missing some vegetable elements which will get added later.

Menu:

Saturday – out
Sunday – roast chicken, root vegetables, kale
Monday –  chicken tacos/taco salad
Tuesday – cilantro lime shrimp (still haven’t made it), greens, second vegetable
Wednesday – out
Thursday –  turkey with cranberry goat cheese & spinach, sweet potato
Friday – lemon parsley fish, greens, second vegetable

Breakfasts will be mostly coconut milk smoothies. Lunches will be salads with chicken and tzatziki sauce.

Can you guess next week’s goal by looking at this menu?

Lesson learned: Failure happens

Failing as dramatically as I did last week, and on so many different levels, was disheartening. But then I read a couple of articles from bloggers that I respect which reminded me that everyone fails sometimes, even people who have been doing this for a while.

Check it out:

Taking My Own Advice

Whirlwind Weekend

 

Week #8: Posture

Last week was a total failure. I had loads of sugar, almost no vegetables, little water, and no stretching or exercise. Then my cat died after a longish illness and I realized I’d been terribly stressed for weeks. Today I gave myself a chance to get back on the wagon and it worked pretty well.

Shall we recap?

1. No sugar
2. Veggies at every meal
3. Walk every day
4. One intense workout per week
5. Lean protein at every meal
6. Stretch every day
7. Drink more water

Now it is week 8, the last week before a major dietary change, and I’m going to focus on two things: standing and posture. It is true that I no longer have a desk job, but I still sit more during the day than is good for me.  I’m going to be more mindful of times when I can stand.

While I’m standing I’m going to focus on my posture. I have been regularly seeing a chiropractor for an embarrassingly long time, and though I have improved I’m sure I haven’t done as well as I could have if I’d taken more of a lead in my own wellness. I was having some pretty bad lower back pain when standing for any length of time. Then I found this Authors @ Google talk by Esther Gokhale and she changed my whole approach to my posture. Now I am more aware of the things that I’m doing that exacerbate the problem, and I feel more empowered to make good changes.

Now it is time for a walk!

Veggies and menu week #7

After last night’s post about my fridge I reorganized the whole thing and moved my veggies to the top shelf. Today I was so excited to put away my veggies (I have never said that before) that I forgot to take a photo. So here is my fridge:

My fridge week 6

Farmer Tom’s produce this week was the most beautiful I’ve seen. We got red leaf lettuce, purple kale, red chard, red and golden beets with giant greens, kohlrabi with equally giant greens, and sweet potatoes. You can see that we are still growing some green onions in the refrigerator from a previous week’s haul.

Hopefully this new layout will help the veggies get eaten!

Menu:
Saturday – beef taco skillet (I used crushed tomatoes instead of tomato soup)
Sunday –  swedish meatballs w/lingonberry jam, beets & greens
Monday –  roast chicken, sweet potatoes, jicama & greens
Tuesday –  out
Wednesday – out or leftovers
Thursday –  pecan crusted tilapia, green beans, salad
Friday – cilantro lime shrimp, kale, coconut rice (from here)

I’m going to try this pina colada green smoothie for breakfast with chard instead of spinach. Lunches will be mostly chicken quesadillas except tomorrow, which will be blueberry balsamic pot roast (I left out the mushrooms) at a potluck.

Total failure

This week has gone very badly. I don’t think I have achieved any of the goals I set for myself. I need to set myself up for nutritional success on the weekend, but they have been so busy that I haven’t had a chance. This weekend looks busy, too. I need a new approach to shopping, fridge organization, and meal planning.

What kind of strategies do you use when planning and shopping?

Week #7: Drink more water

First, a recap of this week: I have good news and bad news. The good news is that I rocked out my exercise goals. I did an intense workout earlier in the week, I walked almost every day with a 4 mile walk yesterday afternoon (my longest yet), and I stretched at least three times this week. The bad news is that I ignored every single one of my food goals. I can count on one hand the number of vegetables I had. I think I had the same number of milkshakes this week, actually.

So this is a new week. I’m recommitting to all of my goals:

1: No sugar
2: Veggies at every meal
3: Walk every day
4: Intense workout once per week
5: Lean protein at every meal
6: Stretch at least 3 times per week

And now 7: drink at least 4 pint glasses of water per day. Water is my beverage of choice and it is the only thing I drink most of the time, but I’ve noticed that my intake has really gone down since I left my desk job. I’m home all day now, so you would think that drinking water would be easier. I’m going to make a point of drinking at least 4 glasses during the day before dinner.

This is also the last week I’ll be eating red meat until Easter, but that’s a topic for a later post.

Veggies and menu week #6

Oops, I forgot to take a picture of this week’s veggie haul. We picked up a small cabbage, a one pound sweet potato, a head of red leaf lettuce, some purple kale, and a bag of spinach.

Sadly, all of last week’s veggies are still in the fridge. More about that in the next post.

This week’s menu:

Saturday – out
Sunday – out for brother in law’s birthday
Monday –  sausage, cabbage, and rolls (same as last week)
Tuesday – husband is cooking tonight
Wednesday –  blueberry balsamic pot roast (in the crock pot) w/mashed sweet potatoes
Thursday –  pork chops, greens of some kind, maybe some rice (I was feeling very uninspired about this dinner)
Friday –  cilantro lime shrimp, greens, rice (again, uninspired)

Breakfasts will be mostly spinach and crab omelets. Lunches will be salad with pan fried salmon and also some butternut squash soup.

New workout: Peak 8

I do quite a bit of research about health topics online, so I like to think that I know some stuff. Unfortunately, knowledge doesn’t always translate into action. So last week when my chiropractor asked me to check out his Advanced Exercise class (available on his web site) I imagined that I would pick up some new ideas and that would be about it.

I watched the video tonight and was surprised that it presents a quick and efficient, yet scalable, exercise plan. What’s more, I was actually inspired to try part of it tonight. I had planned to do this week’s stretching routine for the first time tonight, but I had a spare couple of hours and a vague desire to warm up my muscles first so I tried a quick Peak 8 workout first.

Peak 8 is basically just intervals, similar to Tabata training but with longer sprint and cool down sessions. I chose some simple exercises that I could do at home just to test my endurance level. I also didn’t want to get too far away from the house in case my knee decided to act up again.

It was great! I felt like I worked, but not so hard that it was discouraging. I know that if I stick with this I’ll see some improvement in my health and endurance.

What a smart chiropractor I have.

Week 6: Stretching

This week I’m going to introduce stretching into my routine. It’s no fun getting all stiff and experiencing the associated injuries, especially since I’ve always been pretty flexible. I’d like to do something every night but for now I’ll commit to just three nights per week so I can be sure I’ll succeed.

This daily stretch routine looks pretty thorough. Do you have a stretching routine you like?