Friday, January 28, 2011

Making Peace with your Food- Mindful Eating Vol. 1

I am eating for fuel as I make my way through training for my Half Marathon! [AH]!

How and why you ask? I am making peace with my food...

- Give yourself unconditional permission to eat. If you keep telling yourself you can’t have something and deprive yourself, it can lead to intense feelings of deprivation that build into uncontrollable cravings and binging. Remember to think “do I really need this?”, “how it will make me feel once I am done?” and if you have decided it is something you need, savor every bite and really enjoy the satisfaction factor, one of the most basic gifts of existence- pleasure and satisfaction that is found in the eating experiences.
- Reject the diet mentality. Learn to eat the things you want. Listen and honor your hunger. Keep your body biologically fed- look for your hunger cues from your body and act upon them.
- Respect your fullness. While eating ask yourself, how does the food taste? Pause in between bites and put your fork down, this will give your body more time to signal to the brain that you’re full. It takes about 20 minutes for this message to get to the brain.
- Eat and focus. Go back to the times when we ate as a family at the dinner table and not around the TV in the living room. Studies have shown that those who focus on their meal during a meal time and aren’t watching TV, driving or in a hurry and standing, have eaten less calories in one sitting.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Back on Track

Sorry for the blog glitch! I am still around and busier than ever. I have committed to running a 1/2 marathon in March. I have never officially done a real "race" for I am essentially going from 0 to 60 in 12 weeks of training. Along the way I will run 5K's and 10K's, find a new love for stretching, suck motivation out of my team and hit the trails!

I have never been a runner but I decided to pick up the hobby around Thanksgiving...now I have ran 6 miles so far...all at once...without stopping! Remember back in December when I decided that I was just going to do "it?!" Man, have I really outdone myself!

What am I doing to prepare for my first race?

Positive attitude. I have a training schedule that for the most part I need to stick to. There are some days I would rather stay in bed or on the couch and forget hitting the pavement/treadmill. With a positive Just do it attitude I don't even think twice about what I have to do. I lace up and go.

Find a motivational team/ running buddy. I am thankful to be running with some strong, encouraging, crazy people! I have a group from my gym who I am running with; without them I wouldn't make it.

Listen to your body. Another great thing about a training schedule is it helps you to avoid injuries. When your schedule says 4 miles don't go 10. Be mindful of your body and remember go slow and steady...that's why you have 12 weeks to train. You'll break those big mileage stones when it's time!

Stretch. I have recently adopted a new stretch class. Once (or as many times as I can fit it) a week I take Bodyflow, a Yoga, Tai Chi and Pilates class that focuses on strengthening and lengthening your muscles as well as, flexibility. I leave this class feeling centered, at ease and empowered (and so do my muscles)!

Fuel. Maintaining a healthy diet, practicing mindful eating and ensuring my muscles have adequate energy to fuel me in my runs are half the battle. My usual breakfast before a long run? Natural peanut butter on whole wheat bread with or without a banana; I have found this is what works for me. In the weeks of training, use this time to try different fuel products (gu, gel shots, bloks, bars) and pre-run meals. Make sure you don't eat something that will hurt your stomach or cause GI distress. More on running and nutrition/hydration/etc.

Essential gear. Prepare for training and the big day with your essential gear. I am talking clothes (pants/shorts, shirts, jackets, ear warmers, headbands, socks, shoes, gloves), music, fuel and can do attitude. I have found my comfortable long run gear. Since it is cold out, I am layering. I never set out for a run without my heart rate monitor, fully charged iPod set on a genius mix and a headband or something to pull my hair back. Become familiar with what you need to be comfortable. As far as shoes, I would recommend replacing them every 6-8 months if you are racking up some serious miles (500+). Spending sometime getting a fitting would be best (I need to do this)! My favorite workout gear? Addicted to lululemon!

Happy Running :)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Breakfast in a [time] crunch

Once again...Happy New Year! I feel like I just can't say it enough. 2011 is looking great so far :) Hope it is for you as well!

The new year is all about starting off on the right foot, re-evaluating yourself, your lifestyle and having a good attitude to bring a prospurous new year.
Our local restaurants seem to think the same thing; as seen in my previous post about Starbucks' $2.00 breakfast sandwich deal and now an offer from McDonald's!
Starting January 2011, McD's is offerring their fruit & maple oatmeal. Obviously another breakfast choice because we know breakfast is an important part of our daily eats providing essential vitamins and minerals and overall nutrition-related benefits to kick-start our day [and our metabolism] on the right foot! This is a great on-the-go choice for a busy morning at work or taking the kids to school. Now you have no excuse to miss out on the most important meal of the day! Suggested retailprice of $1.99, available anytime of the day at participating McDonald's in the United States.

The Skinny? 290 calories per serving (including brown sugar).
What else is McD's bragging about? it provides 2 of 3 daily recommended servings of whole grains, about a 1/2 cup of fruit, excellent source of dietary fiber (5 grams per serving) and vitamin C (130% of the daily value) and above all, it's made to order with or without brown sugar!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Ding Ding...DEAL!

Deal Catcher or Starbucks fanatic...whatever you'd like to call it ;) I have for you a deal you can't pass up!

A Delicious Way to Start Your DayArtisan Breakfast Sandwiches Just $2 Jan 4-10*The warm, inviting aroma of our morning brew has always been a great way to start your day - but breakfast at Starbucks just got even better. From January 4-10*, enjoy a mouthwatering Artisan Breakfast Sandwich for just $2 when you buy any Starbucks(R) beverage. Each sandwich is handcrafted with savory meats, delicious high quality eggs, gourmet cheeses and an oven-toasted Artisan roll. These delicious breakfast sandwiches are a great way to start your day right.
For more information visit: A Delicious Way to Start Your Day!

Picture Courtesy of Starbucks.com
UHH, YUM!
With two new sandwiches and plenty of delicious options (vegetarian or meat lover), you are sure to find the perfect one to start your day. A hearty mix of [lean] protein, fat and [whole grain] carbohydrates will be sure to keep you "stick-to-your-ribs" full til lunch time!
My favorite? Turkey Bacon, Egg Whites, Low Fat Cheddar on English Muffie! At only 320 calories, what's not to love about this satisfying breakfast?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year, New Fruit?

Happy New Year everyone! Are you planning your new year resolution for this prosperous year?
I rang in the new year in MD, where I was visiting my parents for the greater part of this week. As you may have read before, when I am home I get to spend time in the kitchen with Mom (our chef extraordinaire). We took a trip to Whole Foods to prepare for the NYE meal. Look what I came across...

California Buddha's Hand Lemon


Weirdest looking fruit...ever! Right? Mom and I spotted this right away amongst the neighboring fruits and vegetables. You would use it like a regular lemon...we didn't buy it because it was a whopping $7.99 per pound and man, did it weigh a ton! Have you seen this fruit? or could it be New Year, New Fruit?


Man, quite the eye sore!

 The Buddha's hand is often used for its zest or the peel can be candied. It is juice less and sometimes seedless.