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2012 Resolutions

Happy New Year’s, friends! I hope you all had a wonderful night last night, ringing in the New Year.

As the time tends to dictate, I’ve come up with a few New Year’s Resolutions. I am actually not all that big on New Year’s Resolutions, but this year, it just feels right — especially after my 2011 Reflections. I have a few things that I really want to work on this year, and I feel that 2012 is going to be a good year for me.

The Resolutions:

1. I want to totally and completely heal my knee. Please, oh, please, let this be attainable.

2. I want to lose all of the weight I’ve gained in the past year and a half.

3. I want to get back to feeling toned, strong and fit.

4. I want to really focus on eating clean. Fruits and vegetables are not only good for me, but truly are favorite foods and do make me feel better than chocolate and Goldfish do. Why have I forgotten that so much in the past year?

5. Career-wise, I just want to keep going the way I’m going: work hard, stay driven and motivated, and do the very best I can to be the very best I can be. Well, and land a job. The one I’m in has an end date, but the point of the one I’m in is to meet the right people and show them what I’m made of so that they’ll want to hire me. So, yea. Keep doing what I’m doing.

6. I want to be more consistent about taking my vitamins. I don’t think they really count if I only remember every other week.

7. I want to cut back on drinking — at least for a little while. It’s hardly been out of control, but alcohol does nothing good for the waistline.

8. I want to drink more water. Different kind of drinking. I think I made this a resolution last year but did not do a very good job.

9. I know this seems like such a little thing, but it’s something I’ve really been thinking about lately: I’d like to work on my posture.

10. I want to figure out a consistent blogging schedule that I’ll be able to manage. Better for me and for you!

11. Is it too much to hope for that I want to find a decent boy to date?

I think all of these are attainable. I worry that #1 will be somewhat out of my control and I know that #11 is something that I certainly can’t force. I do, however, think #2-#10 are not only completely attainable, but are really smart, healthy and simple goals.

Overall, I think my New Year’s Resolution is this:

Be this girl again:

…but with a better job (than I had when I took that photo, I mean) and better posture. ­čÖé

What are your New Year’s Resolutions for 2012?

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Diet, Schmiet

Good news.

Though I’ve been toying with dieting over the past week and a half or so, I’ve decided that I instead remain faithful to my philosophy that simply living a healthy lifestyle is the way to go for me. I’m not going to “diet” anymore. I’ll reach my goals in the way that I think is healthy, even if it will take longer.

I don’t regret that I’ve spent the majority of the past two weeks avoiding carbohydrates from grains, most sugar, and all alcohol. Frankly, I think it helped to point out the weaknesses in my healthy-but-not-entirely-so lifestyle, and that’s important because I’ll be able to address them in moving forward.

Firstly, as I said in my resolutions, I tend to have a habit of snacking too much. I often grab handfuls of things here and there. However, having just about everything of which I generally grab handfuls become off-limits over the past two weeks was a great help in breaking that habit.

Secondly, I’ve discovered that I really do need grains in my diet, especially around when I work out, but that I don’t generally need grains late afternoon – on. I think it will be good for me to reintroduce grains at breakfast but to continue to avoid them for the rest of the day and especially at night (in general but not entirely, as I really do resent inflexibility in my diet).

Thirdly, I honestly do notice that too much sugar makes me feel icky. I do feel better, in general, when I avoid it. However, that definitely doesn’t mean I’m cutting it altogether! I just want to watch my intake. So, you know, I’ll taste test one of the cookies I bake, not two plus all the dough I sampled. ­čśë

Fourthly and finally, I think I will continue to avoid alcohol for a little while. It’s kind of nice to detox for a bit, especially after the holidays.

I hope you guys don’t mind all of the back-and-forth as I figure out what works for me.

I’ve already started my return to my own lifestyle, and it feels good!

I went out to dinner at a restaurant called Good Earth with my friend Andrew last night, where I actually ate the (awesome) brown rice that came with my vegetable curry. I also agreed to go out for frozen yogurt afterward. I had just a little bit, but it was enough to satisfy my sweet tooth without feeling like I’d gone at all overboard.

You’re supposed to enjoy your life, you know what I mean? That’s why I believe in balance.

And, well, I barely had any grains to work with this morning, but I made a solid effort.

Into the mix went:

  • 3 ice cubes
  • big handful fresh baby spinach
  • 1 scoop Greens & Whey
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • heaping tbs 2% greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup frozen mango
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 wedge pineapple

On top:

  • coconut butter + coconut oil drizzle
  • raw oats (an idea I got from Caitlin)

It was different, but it worked!

Thank goodness I’ve realized that grains are a staple in my diet (by which I mean the food I eat, not a set of rules!). What are some staples in your daily eats?

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How I’ve Been Doing

You’ve probably already noticed that my blog has been changing. I haven’t really kept up with a day’s eats, consistently (or in a timely fashion), in weeks.

As the blog progresses, I find that many of my favorite posts include food and fitness, but do not center upon making sure I detail every morsel that goes into my mouth or every minute of my workouts. I’m hoping you feel the same way. I’m not 100% sure how the blog will progress from here on out, but I hope you’ll be along for the ride… we’ll figure it out as we go along! As always, I’m eager to hear your input.

Of course, this is still a healthy living blog, and food and fitness obviously continue to be absolutely crucial focal points of the blog.

Also, most of my New Year’s resolutions focus on food and fitness! Naturally, I want to fill you in on how I’ve been doing with them. Given all of the traveling I did on January 1st and 2nd, my New Year’s resolutions began firmly on the morning of January 3rd.

I’ve pretty much been eating the same foods, but in different (or not) combinations.

Breakfasts have twice been yogurt bowls (minus cereal)…

Into the mix went:

  • 3/4 container plain, 0% Voskos Greek yogurt
  • pomegranate seeds
  • blackberries
  • 1/2 banana, sliced
  • nut granola OR nut butter

And twice, since I had to eat away from home, yogurt bowls in a jar… or YBIAJ.

And, one morning when it was actually warm enough, I had a smoothie

Into the mix went:

  • 3 ice cubes
  • handful fresh baby spinach
  • blackberries
  • 2/3 frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • heaping tbs TJ’s 0% Greek yogurt
  • 1 scoop Greens & Whey

On top:

  • coconut butter (mixed with a little coconut oil to make it drizzle)
  • pomegranate seeds

Lunches have been two different forms of veggies + chicken.

Twice that’s been a Thai salad (the same one, both days)…

Into the mix went:

  • bed of baby greens
  • chicken
  • edamame
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • baby heirloom tomatoes
  • cucumber slices
  • TJ’s Asian Style Spicy Peanut Dressing (OMG love)

And twice that’s been roasted veggies …

plus chicken and parmesan.

Roasted Vegetables & Chicken:

  • carrots
  • eggplant, cubed
  • broccoli
  • onion
  • EVOO
  • salt & pepper
  • garlic powder
  • cooked chicken

Everything except the chicken was roasted for 60 minute at 400 degrees. Chicken was added after.

Snacks have twice been Larabars and twice been cheese and grapes (randomly).

Dinners have been more varied and less photographed. One night was an egg & veggie scramble; one night was out at Panera with a friend, where I got black bean soup and an apple; one night was a serving of Mark’s take on my vegetable casserole (sans orzo & chickpeas), which he had made for himself and shared with me; and one night was at Lauren’s apartment, where she served me delicious, homemade and completely “diet”-friendly turkey chili.

She even helped me out with my resolution to replace dessert with tea.

How cute is that tea set?

As for the fitness side of things…

I’ve done really well with the whole listening to my body thing.

I worked out on Monday by doing the elliptical and boot camp but didn’t do any exercises that even seemed questionable for my knee.

I skipped Tuesday’s workout because I’d been up late the night before to pick Mark up from the airport and reminded myself that sleep was more important than a workout.

On Wednesday, I did boot camp and then discovered that my gym had added an Arc Trainer to the cardio room (!!!), so I used that because it’s much friendlier to my knee.

On Thursday, I took a spin class, even though the class starts earlier than my usual workouts. I wanted both the variety and the intensity, as I only had an hour to work out for the day.

And again on Friday, I skipped my workout, as I needed to get my car fixed this morning.

Not too shabby, right?

How are you all doing with your New Year’s resolutions?

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2011 Resolutions

So, I know this is a little late in the game, but it felt weird not catching up on 2010 before getting to my goals for 2011.

1. Lose the weight I need to lose in order to run without hurting myself.

This is my biggest goal of 20111. This is also not something I thought I’d be focusing on this year, but a recent discussion with my doctor confirmed my suspicion that a big reason for my knee problems and other joint issues has been that I have too many pounds on my frame.

As for how I’ll be working to achieve this goal, I’m sure you’ll see how I’m doing it as time goes on, so there’s no need (or desire on my part) to get into any “rules” of my diet right now. What I would like to say now, though, is that my “diet” won’t necessarily completely run along my belief system of healthy living (especially considering that I don’t believe in diets).

I’m going to use a line I got from my friend Katherine: what I’ll be doing to lose the weight is not for everyone and it’s not for always; it’s just what is going to work for me right now… and it has been run by my doctor.

2. Listen to my body and do what is right for it, not what I stubbornly want to do.

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This means I’m done running, at least for a long while (sigh).

This also definitely means that when I’m injured, I don’t push myself. This is big for me, as I was often stupidly stubborn about getting workouts in this year, even (especially) when I should have been giving my body a break.

Similarly, I need to work on realizing that getting my workouts in is not more important than sleep. Sleep is more important than my workout schedule!

3. Work on snacking.


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This actually goes right along with the “listen to your body” point above. I am as ritualized in my eating as I am in my workouts, which can be a problem.

There are times that I just snack because I’m bored or because food is in front of me and that’s stupid, especially because I can go really overboard in grazing (like at parties, for instance). There are also times that I eat because it’s “time to eat,” and not because I’m hungry. Similarly, there are times that I don’t eat because I’m not “supposed to,” and I end up so hungry that I overeat later. This is all quite silly. So, I’m going to work on it.

4. Commit to trying new forms of exercising.

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I’ve been talking about trying yoga and pilates forever, but I still haven’t really made that much of an effort. Here’s to working on that.

5. Get some real furniture.

I am so over IKEA.

6. Travel.

I did my fair share of traveling in 2010, but I’d like to do even more. I’d love to get out of the country, if possible.

7. Really focus on building my career in a way to leads directly to my goals and take steps toward actively getting there.

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8. Move.

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I want a house. With a yard. That, however, must wait until my lease is up.

9. Get a dog.

See above, with the yard. That has to happen first.

10. Replace desserts with tea at night.

11. Use my recipe resources. I’d like to actually make recipes from the cookbooks I’ve purchased and the hundreds of recipes I’ve ripped out of magazines and never looked at again (please tell me I’m not the only one).

12. Improve upon my photography.

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This means, first of all, actually reading my camera’s manual.

13. Get better about staying in touch with out-of-state friends.

Moving across the country from home and from where I went to college means I’m pretty out of the loop of the lives of many of my friends. Returning home and being reminded of how wonderful they all are proved to me that I need to be better about this.

14. Actually use my crock pot.

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Seriously, this has been on my to do list for months… and the pot has definitely been gathering dust.

15. As always, continue to grow with and improve upon the blog.

And…. that’s it! Anything you’d add? ­čśë

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