Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My thoughts on healthy living...

A blog reader sent me the following question:

I have a question to ask and I knew you would be the perfect person to ask.
I have read some of your blogs and they are very interseting, and informative! With a wedding coming up and needing to lose closse to 100lbs do you have any suggestions to get on the healthy wagon? Especially anything that helps as an appetite suppressant? I am hungry ALL the time! My husband wants me to get on a diet that his boss told him about where you don't eat any grain. Have you heard of that, and would that maybe be a good idea?

I have a hard time giving advice on these types of things, because I am on my own healthy journey and finding out things as I go. 

There are a ton of great things to start is what I did to start.

1.  I joined the gym and found 1 class I really enjoyed.  I wrote it into my calendar to go to at least 1 class. I made sure that I never missed this class.  I planned my week around this class.  I also found a friend to go to classes with me. We try to keep each other accountable and get each other to go when we don't want to go...

2. I started running. I have heard so many people say, "I can't run." or "I can only run for 2 minutes without stopping."  I said these same things. But I read about the Jeff Galloway method.  He believes that if you run/walk long enough, you will be albe to run further without stopping.  I started running for 2 minutes and then walking for 1 minute. I did this for 30 minutes.  Within a month, I was running 5 minutes, walking 1 minute.  This continued to help improve my distance and speed.

Along with running, I signed up for a 5K. I knew if I had something to work towards, I would continue running. I also told everyone. This way, I had to be accountable for this decision to run and have a reason to keep running.
I signed up for Runners' Magazine, bought a few cute running outfits and started to read about running. This really helped motivate me to become a runner...which I don't know if I am yet :)

3.  I kept a daily log of what I ate and what exercise I did. I didn't use a notebook but I used the calendar on my phone. I always have this with me and it was easy to track on there anywhere or anytime.  I did not count calories. I just wanted to see everything I was putting into my body.

4. When I planned my week or my day, I planned my breakfast, morning snack, lunch, and my afternoon snack.  When I left the house, I had these things with me.  This way, I wasn't snacking on things around school or junk food from convenience stores.  I googled and searched food blogs for good low-calorie, filling snacks.  Some of my favorites are:
     * Laughing cow cheese and 7 triscuits
     * 2 graham crackers with peanut butter
     * 20 almonds
     * celery with peanut butter
     * carrot sticks (not baby carrots)
My preferences for snacks are always changing but I found it is really good to keep a good list of low-calorie snacks around the house so I have another go-to snack idea.

5. The thing that got me started on this journey and gave me the motivation is reading other healthy living blogs. It is amazing to read the many stories of women who are changing their lives 1 small change at a time!  It shows me every day that if all these women can make these great changes, so can I.  These are some of my favorites:

You can find more of my favorites on my own blog.

I also get great recipe ideas from these blogs. The ladies I read have been on their own healthy journey so they have also done a lot of research and experiments with what works.

6.  I gave up alcohol for lent. I did not have a glass of wine at home for 1.5 months.  I lost close to 5 pounds in that month. I attribute a lot of that to having no wine at home or drinking at happy hour.  Now, I drink less at home because I know how much of a difference that made for me.

*** As far as a no-grain diet, I haven't heard much about this.  I knew that if I was going to make a change, it would have to be a life-change. I can't give up grains for life, I can't give up sweets for life, I can't give up ice cream for life, so I am not going to give it up.

However, I do eat these things in moderation.  I make it a goal to have as many vegetables and fruit in a day as possible. I try to have both these things in every meal (breakfast is really hard for me to eat vegetables!!)

*I totally understand your concerns about always being hungry. I felt and still feel like that a lot. I have realized that if I don't have a balanced, filling breakfast, my WHOLE day is shot.  If I miss breakfast, I am always trying to fill my stomach.

I eat a Chobani greek yogurt with granola each morning.

I had regular yogurt today and it was like water...Greek Yogurt is so thick and filling! A 1/2 cup of granola is the perfect addition to make a fabulous breakfast!!

Foodie bloggers are crazy about oatmeal. I haven't perfected this yet to make it my perfect breakfast, but it is very popular!! Another good way to help you stay full for a good 2 hours. 

Don't feel like you can't snack throughout the day. But have planned snacks and snack times.  If a serving of triscuits is pieces and 100 calories, count out 7 pieces and close the box and put it away.  NEVER bring the container with you to the couch, or the kitchen table, or the kitchen counter. Take 1 serving out and put the box away!!!  I look at the Nutritional facts a lot! How much is one serving? How many calories in one serving??

I have also started looking at the ingredients. Stay away from: High Fructose Corn Syrup and TransFat.
(I had pancakes the other day and had 2 different syrups in my fridge. One that I had grown up eating and a new, organic one. The one from my childhood had High Fructose Corn Syrup and I just couldn't bring myself to eat it...I threw it away!)

Like I said, I am not an expert or extremely knowledgeable in this area, but I know what has helped me.  

Find your own ways to stay motivated and accountable. It has to be a life change, and not just a "for now" change...

Good luck and let me know how it goes!!!!!


Jenna said...

Thank you for the shout out, lady! This was a wonderful post that has even inspired me even MORE to eat right and treat my body right.

I am with you on the Chobani love, that stuff is dangerous. I must ask, have you tried OIAJ yet?

Joanie said...

I haven't tried Oats in a Jar...I just haven't perfected the oatmeal yet. Can you give me step-by-step instructions of how you make them???

Debra said...

Great Blog~~wanted to add: often times we think we are hungry when we are really need to drink more quality water (such as Spring water~ try to find a local Spring where you live & drink the best water ever!!!)Keep up the Blogging