Thursday, May 26, 2011

Teacher Gifts

Having received a few teacher gifts when I taught gymnastics, I try to come up with teacher gifts that aren't going to wind up in the teacher's next yardsale. Lotions, candles, etc...YUCK.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Paleo Thing--Update

I wasn't very Paleo today, or I was a VERY sugar coated Paleo.  I'm doing OK without coffee, but linger in my coffee scented garden breathing the sweet aroma to get a fix. Man, I really need to do a blog post on that gardening project....anyway....

I  need to read the book(s) on Paleo to really get it I think, because I am surely doing something wrong. When I get into the forums like PaleoHacks and they talk about proper ratios of fat to meat to veggies to whatever, I'm lost. I'm just not educated enough to embark on this journey YET. I also don't have enough time or money right now. 

While weight loss wasn't the prime motivator for doing this experiment, a wee bit of tummy blubber lost wouldn't be a bad thing. I wouldn't mind having a butt like a pilates instructor either! But, I'm nursing the 18 mo. old, and while I can't pull any definite proof out of anywhere, I'm pretty sure my body is going to hang onto some fat as long as I'm make sure the baby has something to live on if a famine happens or whatever. I'm not going to quit nursing just to have a better chance at losing some tummy blubber, so what am I going to do?

I'm going to try to keep eating no bread/cereals, unless they are worth it, like at a party with cake and yumminess, and I'm going to keep eating craptons of veggies like we have been. It's been good that way. I had gotten very lazy.  Plus, I'm determined to increase water consumption. I barely drink anything in a day. 

I'm having trouble figuring out what to do about the kids and milk. There are so many conflicting theories on modern cow milk that I really want to keep the kids off it, but the alternatives are insulin-spiking Country Time lemonade or $$$Coconut and Almond milk. I'm pretty sure that I could get raw milk from a friend or someone else local, but it's are from grain-fed cows, and don't-ya-know, grain fed everything is evil.

Off to do more research....

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Bye-Bye Coffee--Give Me Back My Brain!!

So, yesterday as I typed my post and admitted that I just couldn't give up coffee, I thought about how weak and stupid that is, when there's really not anything healthy about coffee, and it tastes so nasty that yummy stuff has to be added to it to make it drinkable. Then today I was following some links here and there and from found THIS ARTICLE, called Start of Days. Here are the excerpts, which, if I can keep fresh in my mind, MAY just get me to kick the coffee.
"200 mg of caffeine (one 12 oz mug of coffee) increases blood cortisol levels by 30% in one hour and cortisol can remain elevated for up to 18 hours later."
So, What? What's Cortisol?

"Chronically high cortisol levels not only contribute to osteoporosis, but they are toxic to brain cells and can lead to short-term memory loss. (emphasis added by CraftyCrofts)

When we move beyond the brain and into the body, we find that because we no longer have immediate physical responses to our high cortisol levels, cortisol makes us…fatter. Cortisol breaks down adipose tissue and moves it into the bloodstream for energy, but what happens when energy isn’t needed? Well, research is finding that instead of burning the triglycerides, cortisol causes these unused fats to be re-deposited in the adipose tissues surrounding the belly."

Well, by golly, MAYBE, my short-term memory loss (that I have been attributing to mental issues that I battle) is actually caused by my 24 oz cup of coffee every morning?  I am ready to give away the coffee maker. Of course, hubby won't go for that, but, WOW. I. AM. MOTIVATED. The loss of "adipose tissues surrounding the belly" won't be a bad side effect either!!

How long do you think this will last? really, I'm serious. Do you think I have the willpower?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tuesday - Fun Workout!

Ah, Tuesday, day 9-ish of this fun.  The Paleo-ish-ness continues. Lots of fruits and nuts, more veggies than usual, and heavy on the meat. no bread/grains for me, back to bread and cereal and Z Bars for the kids, out of laziness and cheapness on my part. They are definitely getting more veggies. They've always been fruit-a-holics, so can't really do much increasing their fruit intake.

Coffee has been good. I just can't give it up, and definitely not switching to black. So Delicious Coconut Creamer -French Vanilla Flavor is the key.  Not perfect, but better than chemical filled Coffee Mate.  I had to buy it at the natural foods store an hour away. It's an itty bitty, overpriced shop, but hey, they had it. I've requested our local Safeway carry it. Last time I requested something they got it in about 6-months.  We'll see this time.

Workouts up until tonight have been messed up and cut short  by kids, etc. Tonight we put the kids in bed and I took off for the track.
1 Mile there and 1 Mile back, and here's what I did at the track:

Was supposed to be:
200m run
10 Air Squats
10 Pushups

I did two rounds as written, but then...

200m run--I was actually nauseas when i got there, so...had to switch it up.
20 flutterkicks on the 3-count
10 handstand push ups against fence
2x count of 10 handstand

run 200
5AS, 3x up the stadium stairs, switch to bunny hopping up 2 of them, walking down, figured that worked about the same thing as the AS.
Then I could feel my abs had gotten some work and figured my back needed some so I hooked my feet under the bottom stadium bench and bent over the concrete wall for real back extensions x 20.
Then I jogged over and invited a group of walkers (who probably thought I'm crazy) to the run/walk club Thursday night and ran home.
My legs were jello when I got home. That's the point, right?

Saturday, May 7, 2011


Yesterday was good! Canned Coconut Milk (like for Pina Coladas) and Chocolate Almond Milk (from the dairy section) made my coffee Palateable. We ate hard boiled eggs (Lavagirl has taken to calling them "hand eggs" because you can hold them in your hand like an apple to eat!) for breakfast.  Lunch was Subway Kids' meals for the kids and nuts and figs and some stolen (from the kids) apple slices for me.  The Subway switch is a big one, and although I know lunchmeat isn't that great, it's gotta be somewhat better than McD's. Lesser of two evils, right?

Workout was the standard warmup and then 1 round (should have been 3 rounds) of 800m run, 50 Situps, 50 Back Extensions. Hubby says there's no way I'm doing Back Extensions right, so I've gotta go check crossfit youtube to find out.

Ok, so, I've been doing "swimmers" for a week and should have been doing "Supermans" whatever, Swimmers are BETTER THAN NOTHING!

Saturday's almost over and I'm just finishing the Friday post so I'll just swing straight into Saturday.

Woke up and made the kids normal Waffles and eggs, made myself an omelette with smoked salmon (in the foil pack) with Wal-Mart's Pineapple Salsa (all natural, very good stuff!).

Lunch was ...going to be Paleo... at a Japanese restaurant...I planned on just eating sushi...without rice. And then even though I made sure to check the No-Rice column, they gave me it on rice and I couldn't help myself. I ate the rice too. Then, the kids didn't eat all their Lo Mein, and it was REALLY GOOD, so I had some of that too. I know Soy isn't big in the Paleo world, but the Miso Soup was REALLY GOOD too so I had a bowl of that. Really, I  had a Japanese Feast. Mmmmmmm.............  I realized afterward that they probably use MSG, and that would be why I had a headache when we left.

Dinner was more of last night's Kalua Pig and Cabbage which I realize now I never even wrote about  yesterday.  We usually eat KP&C with rice, but I just didn't eat the rice. It was a bit boring because I cooked the cabbage separately from the KP, so I dumped on soy sauce and Wasabi Fumi Furikake (same as the cabbage snack the other night if you're following all this), and it was TASTY.

I should do a shopping report post sometime. I've been shopping a lot this week, just trying to determine if a paleo diet is even possible here in the midwest, land of Grain-fed beef, pesticide laden potatoes and genetically modified beets. It's definitely going to break the bank to continue this, but hopefully the savings on Doritos and Oreos will make up some of the difference.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Eating Healthfully and Working Out = Great Day

Call it whatever you want, I think I had a pretty good day with even less cheating than yesterday.  I had another Smoothie with Arbonne Chocolate Protein Powder (first ingredient: Sugar), and another coffee from the coffee shop, (small and skinny...not very yummy), but other than those, no cheating. Oh wait, dinner had to be quick because of Running Club so I baked some frozen (greasy) sweet potato fries and fish nuggets (real fish, not scary fishstick fish) that had some kind of breading on them, but really, considering the standard Western alternatives, not bad.  I drank more water today and am actually feeling great now after running club.

Running Club was my WOD, a run/walk of 2 miles to set up the route and then guessing about another 2.5 actually with the club (the route is sort of 'invisible hare' and hounds format, with a mystery route at every corner).

The kids are loving the pre-dinner veggie snack tray system.  Dip. dip. dip.

Busy day, time for bed. Good Night!!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Sucking at Paleo/Primal and CrossFit, day 3

Wednesday is supposed to be my VVacuuming day. (see how the VV's look like a W? maybe I should explain my cleaning system sometime), AND IT ACTUALLY GOT DONE. Plus, tomorrrow, THursday is SHeets day, and I already did that. Working ahead? Hoo Yah!!!

Oh yeah, um, Paleo. Well, my internet and phone were down this morning, evidently the whole neighborhood had a problem, and so I don't really remember what I ate for breakfast. I think it was the leftover steak and some ...cabbage?  Oh wait, of the kids wanted a smoothie, so I had some of that too. Cow Milk, frozen Peaches and Arbonne Chocolate Protein Powder (first ingredient: Sugar).

Ooh, speaking of cabbage, last night after yesterday's post, I wanted a snack, so I pulled out some of the cabbage I boiled (on day one?) and added sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger and Wasabi Fumi Furikake, and microwaved it.  Instant asian food. YUM. Slurp, second bowl down the hatch too.

Lunch today...well, I went to the grocery store (both of them actually) and stocked up on produce (the kids go through carrots and celery like crazy), looked for Almond Flour (NOPE), Almond Butter (got it), Hummus, guacamole (got it got it), various nuts and raisins, Chocolate Almond Milk and Vanilla Coconut Milk (yes, the plain ones are better for me...too bad none of us can choke the down), some exotic sounding all natural sausage that was on sale in 6 different fancy flavors, cheese (the kids  are definitely Primal, I'm still trying to stay away from dairy). Ugh. Cheese. Tyler actually picked a GIANT block of All Natural, totally healthy nothing-added cheese.  I told him he had expensive taste in cheese. Not to mention, I'm going to have to cut it myself. I know, I know, the pre-cut and pre-shredded cheese are treated with some anti-clumping ..uh...stuff...but they are SO EASY. I ate nuts for lunch I guess, as I drove around. I guess we'll be finding out what expensive cheese tastes like tomorrow with lunch.

I am NOT drinking enough water. However, I did grab some coffee downtown YUM, SLURP, DROOL (must review Newberry's sometime!), but, realizing that swimsuit season is upon us and I'm not living on nuts and berries for nothing,  I only got a small and skipped the whip cream.

Then I tried to go to the track nice and early to do day 3 of CrossFit and the HS Track team was practicing! Can't they practice somewhere other than the HS Track?? ;-)

So I came back home to make dinner nice and early, thinking I'd have tons of time to possibly finally go to Wednesday Night Church (which I haven't done in like, 5 years) and then got a phone call....finally got off the phone...drove to McD's for kid food (managed to not break my own experiment), came home, fed the kids McNuggets, apples and Chocolate cow milk. Only the oldest ate the nuggets, and only because of the toy as a bribe. I AM DETERMINED to quit going to McD's.  The kids eat Paleo/Primal happily and have to be forced to eat McCrap. That should tell you something right there. Finally had time to figure out my food and remembered the sweet potatoes I had thrown into the microwave before heading to track. had one of those, leftover steak, and a HUGE PILE of Spinach, wilted in Olive Oil with Salt.

Also, chopped up and put in an accessible container, all the produce from the stores, with small containers of Hummus and Glazed Walnuts to make it like an almost-Bento Box.

I hardboiled some eggs for easy breakfast with the Kiwi fruit that doggone better be ripe by morning.

So in summary, no Doritos or Jelly Beans today (shared the remaining Beans with neighborhood kids yesterday to eliminate that threat), but I did have Fancy Coffee, resisted ordering for myself at McCrapHole, and didn't workout, but only because the Track was being hogged by actual Track Athletes.

Not perfect, but better than nothing. For Sure.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Trying Paleo/Primal Day 2

Breakfast took me a while to get around to making, but eventually I wilted some spinach in butter and then fried in some eggs with chili powder, and topped it off with Old Bay seasoning. yum. The Baby liked the egg part, so I cooked him up some without the spinach.

For a snack at some point I had some smoky almonds, too salty for real Paleo, but already in the house and better than a peanut butter cup, right?

Lunch has been greenbeans and almonds so far, and lemon pepper tilapia is in the oven. cook faster, dammit!

I'm going to have to get better at working ahead for this.

I have leftover steak that had been saved for fajitas, but now is just going to get eaten for dinner.

Tons of energy. Cleaned out my baking cupboard of the flours like Amaranth and Wheat Gluten and other fancy flours that I had been buying to make fancy "healthy" bread. Giving them to a homemade bread loving friend.

I'm keeping the Tapioca Flour and hope to find and buy Almond flour though, because I've seen some decent sounding "pancake" and other "muffin" type recipes that call for those.

Time to go check on my fish!

***a while later***

Arrgh!!  The fish was cooked perfectly. Went outside with it to eat and watch kids play and managed to dump most of it on the ground. Julie the Dog liked it....

Out of Frustration, I ate some Doritos, but surprisingly, not too many.

**after bedtime, back at computer**

Dinner was requested by Sharkboy: Apples, Asparagus and Chicken. I served the apples raw as an appetizer with sunflower butter. He had been expecting baked apples. Oops. Oh well. He didn't like the Sunflower butter either. I hope he likes Almond butter.

Sharkboy has decided he really likes "lunchables" but I've figured out it's not what's IN the box that he likes, he likes the Bento Box system. The apple appetizer was actually apples and carrots and sunflower butter and ranch dressing and glazed walnuts (I'm starting to think that if I ever go Paleo, we'll have to come up with a new name, like, the Sugar-Coated Paleo. Is that possible? If this Paleo experiment does nothing else, it has shown me why Tyler doesn't eat the Lunchables he begs for and I buy occasionally. Of course he doesn't eat what's in it. The contents of the standard Lunchable are disgusting. However, I think I'll be shopping for a good Bento Box, or sending Hubby to find some in Japan in a couple weeks!  Yes, Japan!   His shopping assignment list gets longer and longer every day...I hope he has time to do some shopping...

Workout was supposed to be the second day on the paper Travis gave us at the seminar, but after loading up the kids and the veggie bento snack box in the car and driving to the track, we found a Track Meet in progress. So, we came back home and I switched to a later workout with no running.

I did the warmup, running to the end of my block and back then 5 each of PU, SU, AS, BE

forgot to stretch, was doing a little bit, checking on food, PU, SU, feeding kids, AS, cleaning up kids, etc.

So, it was supposed to be 10 rounds for time of

I did 6 rounds of 10, with my pushups being regular floor pushups for 2 rounds, knee girlie pushups for 2 rounds and hands about 6 inches off the ground on a board for 2 rounds. The situps were all with my feet hooked under something, and the 10th round of situps was with feet under 40 lb Sharkboy, which led to the last ten Air Squats being leg extensions on my back giving Sharkboy rides (sort of like airplane rides).

Ooh, and to top off a productive day, Tuesday is supposed to be my bathroom cleaning day, and I actually did it. It often gets put off. How long can I keep up this level of productivity???

Better than Nothing!!!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Trying Paleo

This would be a longer post but well, spring is pretending to have arrived today, so I'm going to get to work outside.

I am going to TRY the Paleo lifestyle this week, as hubby will not be around to complicate things by being resistant to the system. I'm going to blog what I eat.

Yesterday was semi-paleo, as I knew I was going to be pretty motivated after going to a seminar by  I don't totally remember what I ate, but lots of eggs, walnuts, raisins, carrots, and imitation crab (I know, tons of gluten and crap in it) figured into the equation. Plus Jelly Beans. Come on, they are right. there. in.  I didn't have coffee but am pretty sure I  had herbal tea.  Plus Jelly Beans.

Today so far, I've had Bacon, Eggs (fried in PAM, canola oil...Paleo? I have no idea!) and Mangoes.  I was so lucky to swing by Wal-Mart after the seminar yesterday and find PERFECTLY ripe Mangoes for 33 cents (not sure if per pound or each,'s cheap).  I should have bought a TON, but only filled up one produce bag.  Good "exotic" produce is so hard to find here in the midwest. It was like a sign from God saying I CAN DO IT (the Paleo thing).  Oh yeah, and Jelly Beans (the bag isn't empty yet!)

Pictures of food coming up soon. Time to figure out lunch (spinach cooked in bacon grease? and....roast beef with veggies?), and get to work on finishing the sandbox project. 

Ideally I'll give CrossFit a try this week too, but I'm sore just from "trying" the workout moves yesterday. I can't imagine what a whole workout is going to do to me. How am I supposed to prepare food if I can't move my arms????

*** A Few Hours Later***

Lunch was leftover Roast Beef and roasted carrots. I left the roasted potatoes in the leftover bucket.

Then I dropped Sharkboy at Preschool, shopped for more materials for the Sandbox project, worked in the yard, rearranging the garden, and suddenly it was time to pick up from Preschool. When we got home, my awesome neighbor came over to help finish building the sandbox. Then, after being more productive than I have been in ages, I tossed the kids a precut bucket of veggies, fruits, and dips, and we went to the HS Track for my first CrossFit workout.

I started with the warmup:
400m run
15 pushups (actually 8)
15 situps
15 Air Squats (more like, 9?)
15 Back Extensions (also known as Swimmers or Supermans)

The Workout
was supposed to be 3 rounds of, but I did 1 round of
Run 100m
50 pushups (more like 25)
Run 100m
50 Situps... Since I don't have the Abmat (yet) I had the kids hold my feet.
Run 100m
50 Air Squats
Run 100 m
50 Back Extensions

I came home and mowed the yard then the poor starving children dragged me inside. After quick but badly needed baths, I made them tuna (with Miracle Whip and sweet relish) sandwiches, which they DEVOURED. Not paleo and not normal dinner, but yummy and most people would consider it healthy. Sharkboy ate 1.5 sandwiches. Lava Girl ate about 3/4. Plus milk. I found more mango while cleaning kitchen (it's not really clean yet, but was trying to make a hole) and we all shared the mango. Mmmmm.
For my dinner, I ate some of the sweet and yummy tuna mixed into spinach wilted with Olive Oil and Lime juice, then tried the tuna salad on some boiled (need to find my steamer) cabbage, and also devoured a sweet potato that I had thrown into the microwave before heading to the track...but then forgot about...

After bedtime, I ate some more Jelly beans.

The first 30 days of Paleo are supposed to  be REALLY LOW SUGAR, but um, I'm a total sugar addict and refuse to go cold turkey. Anyway, I'm just giving it a 7-day trial, right? I even had coffee today, but only half my usual amount, and still used sugar and Half and Half. I've been living on Caffeine, Sugar, and healthy dinners for way too long.

The baby (18 months) was asleep before I could even get a pajama shirt on him after the bath, so I am thinking he likes all the activity, productivity, and lack of caffeine and sugar in his milk. 

Either I'm coming down off those last Jelly Beans or it's actually time for bed. Either way, I've been up for 17 hours. It's time for bed. Good night. Lets see how Paleo goes tomorrow without any bacon in the freezer, a dirty kitchen (hello, spent the whole day outside) and Tuesday is always my busiest day of the week.

I could have sworn I had fish oil pills in the closet from a previous vitamin taking kick, but all I could find was Vitamin E and A and multi vites, so took some of those. Fish Oil will go on the list of junk to buy.


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