Sunday, August 31, 2008


I know it's been a while...

Progress - The school year has begun, and thus the whirlwind of work and worry. Due to my structured days, I have managed to eat healthy on a (mostly) consistent basis. The only problem is trying to overcome the desire to hit up a happy hour once the day is done. Bar food and likka are my weaknesses.

I have been walking consistently. Most days I wake up early and get in a 20 minue brisk walk on my treadmill. That wakes me up and at least I have SOME sort of exercise if I am dog tired by the end of the day. Ideally, I would like to walk in the morning and evening, but I am working on it. I am thankful that my job is an active one, I logged 13k on my pedometer one day at work alone.

I also cooked this week, something I used to enjoy but gave up to due supposed lack of time. I cooked Risotto Zuchinni Rice Cakes with Tomato Compote and Red Curry Tofu with Stoplight Peppers and Broccoli and Coconut Scallion Rice. Mmmmm! Email me for the recipes.

This morning I walked for about an hour and 15 minutes (4 miles), and I feel great. I snuck in a weighing on the scale, and I have not lost any weight, but I haven't gained any weight. This week, my goal is to fit in at least one strength training session. Good luck to the rest of you!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Quotes for Every Occasion - Oprah Style!

All quotes are from O Magazine.

Choices and Change
I believe the choice to be excellent begins with aligning your thoughts and words with the intention to require more from yourself.

December 2003

Focusing on Your Goals

Energy is the essence of life. Every day you decide how you're going to use it by knowing what you want and what it takes to reach that goal, and by maintaining focus.

July 2003

Facing Challenges

Challenges are gifts that force us to search for a new center of gravity. Don't fight them. Just find a different way to stand.

October 2002

Failure as Motivation
Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment. Own it.

September 2003

Monday, August 11, 2008

Quotes for Every Occasion

Must be nice...
"I never diet. I smoke. I drink now and then. I never work out. I work very hard, and I am worth every cent.” ~Naomi Campbell

Tame the Neurosis:
"What some call health, if purchased by perpetual anxiety about diet, isn't much better than tedious disease." ~George Dennison Prentice

Practical Advice for Planning Meals:
"Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper." ~Adelle Davis

Philosophy Lovers:
"What is food to one, is to others bitter poison." ~Lucretius (96 BC - 55 BC), De Rerum Natura

Oprah Lovers:
"There's no easy way out. If there were, I would have bought it. And believe me, it would be one of my favorite things!" ~Oprah Winfrey (1954 - ), O Magazine, February 2005

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Fitness Break: Why are you Single?

What do you say when someone asks the following: “Why is a beautiful woman like you single?”

I always hear that sentiment, and it makes me uncomfortable. Aside from the fact that I find it slightly offensive (NO one says this to a man - to be a single man is a badge of honor), I really don't know! Well, to save face, I always try to keep it short and sweet: “I just haven’t found the right one.” But if I were to really get into it, I mean REALLY delve into all of the delicate and diabilocal details, the list would go something like this:

  1. I’ve been “kickin’” it off and on for the past two years with a man who is too afraid to commit but too afraid to leave me alone. And I guess I haven't left him alone because I am afraid of being lonely In other words...
  2. I am blocking my blessing. But that funky relationship works because…
  3. I might just be too afraid to be vulnerable again. Maybe I am the one who is truly afraid of a commitment, and just seek/attract men that are the same to stay in my comfort zone.
  4. I am a workaholic during the shool year. But we are being honest here: I work a lot in order to avoid thinking about reason #3 (among other things)
  5. The men I do meet think an appropriate get-to-know-you date is to “chill” at their house, or even worse, MY house. I ain’t chillin at no man’s house until we are exclusive or bordering on being exclusive. Which brings me to the fact that...
  6. I tend to have old school values when it comes to dating (but only when it suits me, hahaha).
  7. I meet men with limited life experience (you've never been out of MARYLAND!?) and conversational skills. For example,
  8. I meet men who tell me things like: Obama selected Hilary for a running mate (I'm NOT lying).
  9. I meet men who would rather text than call and have an actual conversation (BIGGEST pet peeve).
  10. I meet men that have too much baggage: living with ex girlfriend, just broke up with ex girlfriend, stalker ex girlfriend,
  11. I don’t approach men…too shy
  12. I don’t meet men in the places I tend to frequent.
  13. The man mentioned in reason #1 says I come off as the type of woman that doesn’t play around.
  14. I don’t play around.
  15. I’m shy around men that I am attracted to.
  16. I usually run when I notice red flags, only to be left with the men that hid the flags better than the rest of them, lol.
  17. A friend of a friend (male) said I come off as impatient.
  18. I’m impatient.
  19. I don’t chase men, and if I were to be perfectly honest…
  20. I’m looking for a man who will chase me (don’t worry, I am worth the catch).
  21. My “no-chase” attitude may come off as I am not interested.
  22. A lot of times, I’m not. I guess I am a smidge picky, but I like to call it standards.
  23. I prefer black men, and LAWD, I could write a whole book on why that can sometimes be a dating obstacle.
  24. I have NO game. I don’t know how to flirt until I get to know someone, then you can’t stop me.
  25. Based on past relationships, I secretly (well not so secretly anymore) think I don’t know how to select a good man.

What does your list look like?

Friday, August 8, 2008

The Perfect Breakfast

Everyone knows it is important to eat breakfast, especially if you are trying to lose weight. I've also read that breakfast is supposed ot be the biggest meal of the day to get your metabolism going and regulate your appetite so you won't be ravenous in the afternoon.

Breakfast can be difficult for me during the school year because I have to leave the house at 6 am, and who wants to cook or even eat that early? This past school year my breakfast had to last 4 1/2 hours because my planning period was at the end of the day. Sometimes I would remember to grab some almonnds during that long run without food, but you can't always remember to feed yourself when you have 30+ teenagers in your face. I had a hard time finding something that would keep me full for that long. I often found myself foggy brained and lethargic at least an hour before lunch.

After much experimenting, I finally realized that the perfect breakfast for some one in my situation would be around 400 calories, low in sugar and carbs, and very high protein and fiber content to keep me going. Although I love protein smoothies, they only keep me full for about 2 hours, and I am not too big on cereal (it also sends me crashing). Here are two options I have been trying this summer in an affort to reteach myself how to eat.

For those Who have time to cook...
Dr. Praeger’s Spinach Pancakes ($4) are like healthy potato latkes for spinach lovers. I like to eat them with eggs in the morning and a little reduced fat sour cream. They are so tasty and for two I get 2 grams of fiber and protein each. They are available at health food stores like Whole Foods or in the health food frozen section of your supermarket.

I eat these with egg whites (8 – 9 grams of protein) mixed with reduced-fat cheese (7 grams of protein) and salsa. Add in some fruit or yogurt and you have a filling meal under 400 calories. Preparing this meal only takes about 10 minutes if you buy the egg whites in a carton.

Fiber One Yogurt ($3 )
I love this yogurt, and it is so creamy.. There is no artificial sweetener aftertaste, fat, or that weird bitter yogurt taste. This yogurt is only 80 calories and includes 5 grams of fiber. The only, and somewhat significant, downside to this yogurt is that it has HFCS. That’s probably why it tastes so damn good, lol.

South Beach High Protein Cereal Bars ($4 )
Aside from the great taste, these bars have only 140 calories and high in protein (10 grams) and fiber (5 grams). SB considers your glycemic level, so you don’t have to worry about a crash later on in the day. Plus, I always seem to find coupons for them. My favorite flavor is peanut butter.

I usually eat just the yogurt and bar and have a snack 2 hours later, but when school starts I will add a fruit and some almonds to it to get it up to 400 calories.

What is your perfect breakfast for weight loss?

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Out of Curiosity

Does anyone actually read this thing aside from my good friend Rashad? If so, say Hi!! Give me some ideas, encouragement, inspiration. Holla!


I was feeling fine. I squeezed my butt into a size 10 jean skirt at Ann Taylor. Although it was a smidge tight, I got it on and there was no mufffin top, so I knew I was weeks away from being able to wear that skirt without looking like a typical Baltimore woman. I felt slimmer, more energetic, and I even managed to go out to eat and not blow my diet.

August 4th marked the official 1 month of my return to healthy lifestyle land. I got on my scale that morning expecting to see some results, not a lot, but just a smidge of change. The scale stated that I gained 5 pounds.

I jumped on my old school spring scale. It read the same. I got a 5 pound weight and placed it on the scale to make sure my spring wasn't broken. It read correctly. I got on my 3rd scale (I know....issues) that weighs 4 pounds lighter. Stood on it (buck nekkid at this point), did the math, and proceeded to....

Call my momma crying in hysterics. How could I GAIN 5 pounds? How could I gaaaaaaaaaaaIIIIN FIVE pounds? After she managed to calm me down, she suggested I go to my doctor and see a nutritionist. I proceeded to make an appointment and actually got in the same day.

They weighed me, as they do on every doctor visit, and I had to hold back the tears as the medical assistant and smiley intern (who was uber skinny and grinning from ear to ear as she informed me it was her first day) recorded my weight..

The doctor asked me a series of questions, confirmed that I gained 20 pounds in 10 months, proceeded to tell me my cholestorol and blood pressure were excellent and I should just be grateful for that and continue to do what I was doing. I know a good amount of the gain was my abandoning my diet and exercise regimen during the school year, but I also suspect it has something to do with the medicine I started 10 months ago. Needless, to say went off that medication and am looking into a replacement. I exercised with a vengeance that evening (small victory).

I woke up, measured myself, and discovered I lost a 1/2 inch off of my waist (1.5 total). I felt relieved, at least SOMETHING is shrinking. I don't know where this 5 lbs. came from. Is it pms? a result of strength training? My response yesterday showed me just how emotionally tied I am to this process and how much my self esteem is connected to my body image. I don't like feeling as though my hard work is not paying off in the way that I want. Moreso, I don't like feeling so emotional over my weight. They say its a matter of exercise and nutrition. Why is my body now working with the numbers? I feel better today, but this kind of sucks.

I have yet to make an appointment with the nutritionist. Lost two pounds, cycle came (so it was PMS), realized I was overreacting AND did not follow the number one rule: stay away from the scale for the first couple of weeks (some say months) and go by inches and clothing fit. I am definitely going to go the route of my fellow blogger "a biscuit away" and stay faaaar away from the scale for a couple more weeks until my body figures out that she needs to hurry up and shed the pounds.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Quotes for Every Occasion

  • Perspective

"More die in the United States of too much food than of too little." ~John Kenneth Galbraith, The Affluent Society

  • Kick in the Butt

"Reality check: you can never, ever, use weight loss to solve problems that are not related to your weight. At your goal weight or not, you still have to live with yourself and deal with your problems. You will still have the same husband, the same job, the same kids, and the same life. Losing weight is not a cure for life." ~Phillip C. McGraw, The Ultimate Weight Solution: The 7 Keys to Weight Loss Freedom, 2003

  • Humor (It's funny because it's true!)

"Food is like sex: when you abstain, even the worst stuff begins to look good." ~Beth McCollister

  • Literature Lovers

"To promise not to do a thing is the surest way in the world to make a body want to go and do that very thing." ~Mark Twain, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, 1876

  • A Dose of Common Sense

"Food is an important part of a balanced Diet." ~Fran Liebowitz

Sunday, August 3, 2008

SWIPE from NPR: "Why African-Americans Loathe 'Uncle Tom'"

Thought I'd take a break from food and post an interesting swipe from one of my favorite news sources.

Tell Me More, July 30, 2008 · Folklorist Patricia Turner discusses "Uncle Tom" — the lead character in the anti-slavery novel "Uncle Tom's Cabin" by abolitionist Harriet Beecher Stowe — as part of NPR's In Character series. The series examines the fictional characters who have defined American life.

Click to Listen

Interesting Facts:

  • Based on a real slave in Maryland

  • Uncle Tom's Cabin outsold The Bible when it was published

  • Considered the 1st bestseller

Saturday, August 2, 2008

BBC Gives Good TV

What if you were told that the side effects of a particular medicine caused:
extreme fatigue
mood swings
inability to exercise
upset stomach
and depression?

Would you still be willing to take it if you had another option? The aforementioned effects are what the women in BBC America's documentary Super Skinny Me experienced as they attempted to get down to a size 0 by trying a flurry of fad diets including the Master Cleanse, The Water Cress Soup Diet, and the Just Say No Diet.

Super Skinny Me is part of a series of documentaries called BBC America Reveals. These docs "take an in-depth, honest, and often surprising look at some of the body image issues that people are struggling to overcome in their search for happiness," (BBC America Website).

The other docs include:

  • My Big Breasts and Me

  • My Little Breasts and I

  • 476-lb. Teenager

  • Teen Transexual
You can go to the BBC America website to check the schedule. Super Skinny Me is also available on YouTube.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Swipe: NPR - "Eat Healthy Without Going Broke"

From Michel Martin's show, Tell Me More, she discusses practical ways we can maintain a healthy lifestyle with a tight budget.

July 17, 2008

"As part of the program's Cheapskate Week, author Dr. Rovenia Brock, a nutritionist, is joined by Jonell Nash, of Essence magazine, who wrote the article "Healthy Food Shopping for Less!" in this month's issue. The two discuss how to eat healthy on a limited budget, and which foods you might be worth a little extra cash." - NPR

Click to Listen