Wednesday, September 17, 2014

That's Bananas. Literally.

saw a post today that there is a new (or at least new to me) diet that is popular on Instagram. It's a banana diet. Those who engage in this strange (in my opinion) diet eat nothing but bananas. Apparently the standard is 30 bananas a day. A large banana is over 100 calories. That's over 3000 calories a day... In bananas. That's more calories than most of us need. That's also an amount of potassium that I can't imagine is good for a person (over time). 

Being the curious person that I am, I had to check it out. So I went to Instagram and typed in bananaisland in the hashtag search. There are over 14,000 pictures that are associated with that hashtag. I guess people are enjoying their bananas. One girl noted that she ate 20 and was aiming for more the next day. I. Don't. Get. It.  Of course I don't get most fad diets... Or diets in general. Is it really so hard to just eat healthy food? Why do so many people have to follow diets these days? Healthy eating will lead to the results you want while benefitting your body rather than putting it at risk. The only thing I can come up with is instant gratification. People want the results with little effort. Fad diets are like diet pills... Totally unnecessary. 

What was more disturbing to me is that I came across a post where a girl had also used the hashtag "Ana."  For those of you who don't know, that stands for anorexia. And "Mia" is for bulimia. They are typically associated with the proana and promia communities. These are people who want to have an eating disorder and choose to live this lifestyle. Eating disorders are mental disorders that lead to severe physical illnesses. Most people who develop them do so for other reasons. No matter the cause both are difficult.  The fact that people seek it out as a lifestyle choice still freaks me out. I wrote a paper on it in grad school and did a ton of research. What I found was disturbing and frightening. These issues are still highly prevalent and yet they still seem to be a taboo topic. Or maybe it's that they've been around for so long people don't talk about them anymore. The truth is that they are still here and millions of people live with them every day.   

I tried to search proana and promia hashtags on Instagram. Those hashtags must be banned because I found zero results. However #ana and #mia yield numerous results. Over five million posts each. 


One thing that I was glad to see was that my phone showed concern over me searching those hashtags. I was also given the opportunity to learn more about ED based on those searches. 

Thanks, Instagram. I think it is awesome that you include some useful information and send an alert out to users. I was honestly surprised about that... In a good way. I'm happy to see that a social networking app has that included. Very cool. 

Interestingly, the hashtags for bingeeating, bingeeatingdisorder, and emotionaleating had different results. Some still lead to pictures of astonishingly thin girls. Some showed unhealthy foods; what people were about to binge on, and many showed various pictures linked to success overcoming the disease. The foodaddiction hashtag was linked to various pictures of food but not as much was related to addiction as it was showing yummy looking food photos. 

Fad diets are bad diets. But they really get my mind going. Of course, eating disorders are one of those things I'm passionate about. I could spend hours researching and reading. It's disturbing and emotionally draining but that's because it's real. ED is out there and isn't going anywhere. The proana and promia culture seems to be growing. I wish there was more awareness and education was out there. It seems so silent... And there is such a need for it. 

That's another reason I try to stay so positive on this blog... And in life in general. Living healthy is so freeing. I try to advocate for living a healthy life. For some, like me, that's resulted in weight loss.  It has been good for my health and my mental well-being. Now I live healthy because I like it. Can I stand to lose a few pounds? Yes. Is it an obsession? No. I really try to focus more on what I do right - fueling my body with healthy foods and staying active as a way of life rather than a means to an end (for me that would be weight loss). At the end of the day your health is what matters. The size of your jeans or the numbers on the scale can be used as measures but shouldn't be relied on for anything other than that. If you are living healthy your body will get where it needs to be. 

Please know that sometimes you need extra support and help getting there. And that is totally okay. There's nothing wrong with asking for help. And I believe it makes you stronger. Honestly, it takes a strong person to say "I need help." It's easy to hide from any issues in life. It's a lot easier to pretend they are not there than it is to face them. We all have that strength somewhere inside if us... Even though society attaches a stigma to whatever it is we are dealing with, we are strong. I think that people don't often share their struggles or ask for help because there is negativity associated with it... Which needs to change. It's okay to say "I messed up" or "I have this problem." It's being honest. Someone might be disappointed in you for something but they'll respect you for your honesty. They will also be more likely to help you out if you go to them and are totally honest. No excuses... Just own it... Whatever it might be. 

I always tell people that when I changed my lifestyle it was like a switch went off. I saw a picture and thought "I'm 29 and I look like that." I had to admit to myself that I was morbidly obese. It took a picture and the beginning of the last year of my 20s for me to allow myself to be okay with the fact that I was so obese. Once I did that, making the change was easy. 

"You're braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."

Happy Wednesday....


Monday, September 15, 2014

A New Week Begins...

How do weekends go by so fast?! Seriously it's like the start and end way quicker than they should. I guess we all feel that way sometimes though don't we?!

Our weekend was good... Allergies were still making me a bit miserable and then my boyfriend started feeling yucky too. He spent most of Saturday just laying around on the couch. And I made him go shopping with me. Poor guy. I offered for him to stay home but he didn't mind riding along to the craft store... Which turned into the Halloween store. And Party City. And dinner. And then the mall. We probably spent the most time at Buffao Wild Wings so I didn't totally wear him out. I was pretty much in and out of Party City and Hobby Lobby. Our post-dinner walk through the mall was pretty quick too. So he survived. And then we went home and lounged and went to end early. Other than a workout (for me) we didn't do much except watch football on Sunday. I think we both needed to rest. I think I'm finally starting to feel better. I woke up not feeling super gross this morning so that's good. He seems better this eving. Hopefully we will both be back to normal when we wake up tomorrow!

Back to Saturday... That was my rest day from working out as well as the day I decided to have my splurge meal. That was poorly planned. I feel like I should get more exercise than walking around the mall and a couple stores on a day I'm gonna chose to eat a splurge meal. But Hobby Lobby isn't open on Sundays and I kinda knew if we drove out of town it would include dinner. So we went to BW's and I indulged in a couple beers and some wings. Here's a fun fact for those we may not know... They will cook your wings "naked" like they do their Naked Tenders. You can get your sauce on the side so you're eating less of the "bad" stuff. Don't get me wrong, even naked wings are not healthy. Maybe they'd be better of they were grilled or baked rather than deep fried. Anyway so I got traditional wings naked. I used a lot less sauce than I would've if I had ordered them the regular way; tosses in sauce. Also, I used to get the boneless wings because they weren't as messy to eat. Well boneless wings are breaded. So no more boneless. By dipping the traditional wings in a little sauce it's a lot less messy than eating them when tenure tossed in sauce. Messy factor? Much improved with sauce on the side. 

For some of you... A day like that is called cheat day.  Or a cheat meal. I refuse to call it cheating. Cheating at anything is "bad" in my mind. So why would I want to give a negative connotation to something I'm doing? Calling it cheat day or a cheat meal (I won't do a full day - just a meal and/or drinks once a week). I like to keep things as positive as I possible. By calling it a splurge I feel better. This probably doesn't bother most people, as I see frequent posts about "cheat day" but for me... Not so much.

Yesterday was back to working out. It felt good after a day off. I just did a short workout yesterday - the next phase of Chalean Extreme. This is the Push phase and each exercise is only 6-8 reps. BUT... Ya gotta lift as heavy as possible. I lifted pretty heavy (for me and compared to the last phase) but I think I can go heavier with most of the moves. In fact I know I can. I'm excited to see how heavy I go next time I do that workout which will be next Sunday. The next workout is tomorrow and I'm pretty stoked for that one as well! 

Today was another "rest" day on the CLX schedule. I made it an active rest day. I did a strength circuit with my barbell and a Jillian Michaels DVD - Yoga Meltdown. I've gotta say... As much as I like Jillian and her workouts (I have several of her DVDs and did them often in the past)zzz I love my Beachbody workouts more. Insert shameless plug for becoming my customer or joining me as a coach here... Just contact me if you're interested! 

Seriously though, and all sales pitches aside, I've loved everything about the BB workouts I've done/purchased. They're something I really look forward to. I like the design and the professionals on the DVDs. The time flies by (love the counters by the way!) and I feel motivated throughout. These programs are suuuuch a good match for me!! So anyway I missed my workout today and realized I need to get my Rockin Body DVDs back from someone who borrowed them. They're not all that intense for me but they would be perfect for my active rest days. They involve some activity but aren't something that's too intense for me. Perfect. Now hopefully I can get them back before the next one! 

At any rate... My body feels the work I did today. I have a love-hate relationship won yoga. It's good for my body and is a decent workout. But it sucks soooo bad when I'm doing it. I was kinda disappointed today because I think I was able to so the moves with more ease when I did it in the past. Of course I probably wasn't as tight then so there's that. At any rate from the barbell and yoga I feel sore and refreshed all in one. Oh and my triceps are still sore from yesterday! 

Well I suppose that's it for now...
Gonna chat with the man and pay more attention to Raw, the Tigers game, and Monday Night Football... We are currently  flipping between all three. TV with a man... Always an adventure! 

Oh!!! I almost forgot my exciting news. Saturday weigh-in! I was down seven pounds from Tuesday morning. I'm sure that was mostly water weight and I'd been hanging on to some extra since we ate out a few times in the days before Tuesday but that's okay... That's seven ponds down. That's seven pounds out of my system. That's toxins flushed away. That's motivation. I know I won't drop that much this week so I'm taking it while I can and I'm continuing to work hard.  Okay... Now I'm done! 

Have a great week!!


Friday, September 12, 2014

Allergies... Yuck.

Today my workout was... Done. That's about all I can say about it that was good. But some kind of workout was better than no workout at all. I worked following the modified moves on the DVD and at a lower intensity than normal. When following the modifiers the intensity should still be there. It's just at a lower level of impact. Today that did not happen in my workout. Why? The weather changed. This caused my allergies to go crazy and wreak havoc on my body. Yay. I honestly felt like skipping the workout but really felt like I had to do something. I had four lightheaded episodes this morning (in a short period of time) so I was sure to drink a lot of water and scale back the effort I put in. I made it through the workout without incident.  And didn't have any additional feelings of fainting throughout the day. I actually felt a little better after. Maybe the combination of sweating and a hot shower after helped clear some of the gunk out of my head. 

Even though my cardio wasn't as intense and felt like a bit of a struggle, the yoga part of my workout felt really good. I have a love-hate relationship with yoga. Sometimes it seems SO painful but my body feels SO good after. Feeling those muscles stretch is something I absolutely love. And when I'm done I feel relaxed. It's definitely a great way to get the day started! 

Eating has been so on-point the second half of this week (the man and I weren't so good on Monday or Tuesday - not a lot just not healthy) and I feel amazing. I've done a lot of prepping and cooking this week and haven't had any junk. It's like my body is happily detoxing from all the nastiness that I put in it last weekend! Honestly being back into he swing of things makes me not only feel good but feel more committed to my healthy lifestyle. I miiiiight have taken a peak at the scale today (will actually weigh in tomorrow) and have lost a few pounds since earlier his week. That's most likely water weight but that's okay. It's nice to know it's getting out of my system and taking toxins with it!

I guess that's the update for now... Nothing Earth shattering, I know. While I feel better I'm onto to feeling normal so I guess that must impact on how much I want to type. I think we are both ready to get to bed for the night... I have to go to the craft store and get some other things tomorrow so we are going to get up and make a trip out of town. We haven't decided if we will go. North or South yet but we know we are going go one of the bigger towns (one to one and a half hours away either direction) to do some shopping. It might be safer to go North or to the closer town South of here. There are fewer stores that I like in those places... Less damage to be done. Although with shopping I can always cause some damage! 

Havr a happy, healthy weekend!!


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Two Months?!?!

I'm here to silence the crickets that have been chirping on this blog lately! Gosh! I can't believe it's been two moths since I've blogged. I suppose I've been busy but that's not a good reason to not post. The main reason though is that I haven't taken the time to post. There really is no reason for not taking time. I just haven't done it. 

I am not going to take the time to re-cap everything that's gone on in the last two months because that would take multiple posts. I'll keep the recap fairly short and just update on what's been current. That seems much more reasonable at this point in time. 

It was a fun summer... Weddings, time with family and friends, a couple quick trips, and getting really far off track in terms of being healthy. There was more alcohol consumption and eating out  than what's normal for me. So.... That brings me to what's current. 

I'm back to being healthy. I'm committed.  I'm feeling excellent and unstoppable. And those things? Make me feel amazing, confident, and just great in general. 

I've done a couple races this summer. Two color runs in August and September. Both were with my boyfriend's cousin and we had a blast. The first color run was her first race ever and I'm so. Happy to have been the one to get her into it.  Naturally we wore tutus and fun shirts, socks, and glasses. We did the same for the second race. I have to admit we did more walking and goofing around than we did running.  But that's okay. We were able to do something fun and good for us. We will be doing a clown race (yes we will dress up like clowns!) on the 20th of this month. I think I'm slowly getting her to run more during the races so that's good. I'm convinced to show her the joy in it! 

I've been doing Chalean Extreme (CLX) again and am loving it. I'm following the actual program rather than varying it to meet my needs. I'm also happy to share that I've stuck with it longer than I have before.  I'm actually following it rather than throwing it in whenever. In the past I'd follow it and then kind of let it go and do whatever whenever. I'm at the end of the first phase this week. I cannot wait to start the second!!

In addition to CLX. I'm doing extra strength training with my barbell. In doing that I've realized I'm much stronger than I gave myself credit for. I can squat and dead lift 100 pounds... Probably more but my total weight for my bar and all the weight plates is 100 pounds. I'm thinking I need more plates for the bar!!! I'm also adding in other cardio... Some walking (my running has been less than what it should be lately) and other Turbofire workouts. I'm loving it!!! It feels good to be back in action.  

In other news... I've decided to post healthy foods on my FB page (Little Miss Powerful). I'm including photos of the new, healthy things that I try as well as the recipes. My diet has suffered this summer as well. Too much booze and too much unhealthy food. I'm completely back into the swing of things with that too. I'm following a mostly paleo plan to help get myself back into healthy eating. I tend to need to be strict with myself at first and then once I am back into those good habits, I will be able to ease up a bit. That's because it becomes habit. Once you are in the habit of doing sorthig, it's easy. It takes time and patience but you can get there if to you're dedicated. For me, being more strict and carefully watching what I do helps get me into those new habits. I'm sure it's different for everyone but bring diligent most definitely helps. 

I've also made the decision to get back into Beachbody coaching!! Last time I did it mostly got the discount on products. This time I am fully committed. I love the BB programs and really believe I their health and fitness philosophy. The coaches I know seem to genuinely want to help people.  And that's why I have decided to join again - and go active. I'm not in this to try to make a bunch of money or be a saleswoman. I'm in it to share my passion for health and fitness and my love for BB with others.  I feel like this is a great way for me to integrate health and fitness into my career. I'm educated and trained to be able to perform psychotherapy. It's what I love. Counseling others is something I some born to do. And to eventually be able to integrate health and fitness/wellness is something that I am so excited to do. I really feel that BB will help me get there. Also? Coaching will help keep me accountable!

That's the update for now.  I will be back to posting frequently. This blog is another thing that helps me with accountability and helps me to feel good. I love sharing my story, my knowledge, and what I'm doing with all of you.