Two a Healthy Life

One couple on a mission to become healthy

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Day 139: the backsliders club & Frozen Yogurt Fridays

He said:

Kaiser, as part of the Thrive campaign, has a commercial out about the backsliders club.  I don’t know if you have heard it, but the gist of the ad is about how most of the time we all end up sliding back into old habits when we are trying to institute change.  The lesson of the ad being it’s ok to slide back, just make sure you can get it back into gear and keep going.

I was thinking about writing a post about this last Tuesday, and then lo and behold, the next day I started feeling stressed at work and ended up buying a sandwich and a bag of cookies for lunch (the cookies I proceeded to eat over the next two days) and couldn’t muster myself to run Thursday or Friday as part of my marathon training.  Seemed like I had fallen into the backsliders club.

I have been worried from the beginning of this endeavor that there would be a day, starting like any other, where I would simply not be able to handle it anymore and would revert back to my old lifestyle.  I voiced these concerns (and my gilt over the cookies) to Alex over dinner on Friday night and just talking about it helped a lot.  Another reason for the mid-week meltdown (at least what I tell myself) is that we hadn’t done our normal weeks shopping and our batch of soup got messed up, so I had to buy lunch for the week and didn’t bring my normal meals.  Everything seemed tilted and I lost control of the week when my routine was shaken up and as much as I wanted, I couldn’t get back on track.

When you plan out every meal and you know what is ahead it is easy to stick to a schedule, but one week of missing that and I was back to eating unhealthy and not feeling like exercising (though the long work days didn’t help).

On Saturday we went down to Santa Cruz because I wanted to run the course for the wharf-to-wharf (which is in two weeks!!) and Alex wanted to see it as well to get a feel for the hills and what not.  I ended up breaking every PR I have set for running to date: fastest mile, fastest km, fastest 5k, fastest 10k, fastest half marathon; it was a banner day for me and I felt great doing it, the mojo was back.  Even now we have a pot of soup on, I have my dinners planned for the next three days, and my breakfast is already at work.

I hope these steps insure that this week gets me back on track and that I am able to continue with my program.  It brings me to something my dad always said growing up (this is for the golfers) “Your last shot has nothing to do with your next shot.” This could be said about any sport, but really can be applied to every aspect of life.  So what if you miss a workout or eat a couple of cookies?  Just because you had a set-back today doesn’t mean it has to become a trend.  Don’t beat yourself up over the little things, think of it in the long-run.  It will all be ok as long as you can re-center and continue on.

Former, and sometimes current, member of the backsliders club.

She Said:

Nathaniel’s mid-week meltdown was very similar to something that starts to happen to me near the end of every week.

I can’t pretend that I am jovial about cutting calories to the extent that I am. To maintain peace of mind and a happy stomach I eat something every few hours even if that something is a box of raisins or a cucumber. If I miss my morning ‘snack’ or am an hour off with my yogurt my mood can go downhill REAL quick.

As friday approaches- my weekday routine of measuring food and eating soup, egg white omelets and salads can bring me to crisis levels of frustration. The idea of preparing one more meal for which every calorie, fat gram, sugar and carbohydrate is accounted for sounds like a fate worse that not eating anything for dinner.

Measuring your food and being so conscious of your calories really doesn’t take much effort when you’ve gotten used to it but on some Fridays I will be in near tears standing in the grocery store deciding what I can cook that will keep me within my calorie allotment.

This may sound really dramatic but to put it into perspective I have lost 36 lbs. since we created this blog 139 days ago. 3,500 calories represents 1 lb. of body fat which means I have created a 126,000 calorie deficit since the start of the blog. I don’t diet on saturdays or sundays but even if we count my “off days” I have have burned more than 900 calories than I have consumed for each of these 139 days. In reality this means my calorie deficit is much higher than that Monday to Friday.

So – If my friday meltdown seems ridiculous… I would like to see YOU run 6 miles after only eating 600 calories all day and be stoked to have a salad for dinner. If you do this I guarantee you will resent ever leaf of spinach and arugula on friday.

To combat the drag of the diet we have instituted frozen yogurt fridays. After dinner on fridays to signify the end of our work week sensibility we go have a cup of frozen goodness!

Monday I am going to take a break from cardio because I am feeling really tired today. Friday I did a 6 mile run, saturday I rode a bike alongside Nathaniel as he did his half marathon and today I did at least a 5 mile hike. I need a nap.

Thanks for reading!

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Product Recommendation: Briannas Home Style Salad Dressing

When people go on a diet they often begin eating more and more salads. The problem with this is people use certain rationalizations to make their salad less healthy.

These may include:

I am eating all these veggies a little dressing isn’t going to hurt! 

This dressing is low fat!


Salads are healthy!

Dear friends – at their essence salads are healthy. But anyone whose watched a little league team attack the salad bar at their local pizza parlor has seen an exaggerated example of how quickly they can become evil.

Croutons, bacon bits, cheese and dressing can quickly turn your salad into a guilt free calorie bomb.

At home I eat a lot of salad but I am careful to measure exactly how much dressing I put on it.

I put my lettuce, pico de gallo salsa (2 oz / 15 calories) and corn (.25 cup / 35 calories) into a Tupperware container with my dressing and shake vigorously to maximize the 1-2 tablespoons of dressing.

I love Briannas Home Style salad dressings and they come in some really fantastic flavors. For those watching their calories it’s hard to beat Briannas  lively lemon tarragon (2 tbs. = 35 calories / 0 g fat) or Rich Santa Fe Blend  (2 tbs. = 25 calories / 0 g fat).

To compare: the ‘healthy’ option in the Hidden Valley line is the Original Ranch Light with Buttermilk (2 tbs. = 70 calories / 5g of fat).

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Vanity Sizing

Yesterday was the day.

The first day I stopped telling myself things like “I am not hydrated enough” or “I don’t have time”.

I finally kicked my long run up from 5 to 6 miles and I felt really great at the end of it. I felt like I could have done 8 miles easily…

I’ve lost over 36 lbs. since February and I am feeling really good about the process on most days… But, I still don’t see a difference when I look in the mirror although my clothes keep getting smaller.

Right now I am wearing a pair of VERY generously cut pair of size 8 Michael Kors jeans. Yay vanity sizing!

I think this means I am probably a 10 my standard cut of GAP jeans so I am going to have to head over there in a few days to try them on. I wore a 16 back in February.

Because women’s jeans vary so much in actual size from brand to brand- GAP curvy jeans are the yardstick I am using until I have reached my end goal. I just read an article from the New York Times and it is seriously crazy how varied women’s pant sizes are from brand to brand.

Even men aren’t safe! A pair of 36’’ waist pants at Old Navy actually measures 41’’ giving men an obscured idea of their waist size. This is actually dangerous because waist circumference is sometimes used as a prediction for risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Many men might be walking around in 36” Old Navy jeans and assume their waist really is 36”.

I wish clothing companies could get on the same page with their sizing… although when I am eventually a size 8 in Gap Jeans I won’t mind telling people I am a 4 or a 6 in Michael Kors. (insert cute smiley wink here)

Is there anything about women’s size, diet or fashion culture that bugs you?