Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Fat Girl Sleep

I started using a product called fatgirlsleep by Bliss, a popular spa in the W Hotel in New York City.  I've got to give a shout out to my girl, Suga, at Sephora in Manhattan Beach, who turned me on to this product.  It's a nightime cream with slenderiZZZe complex which releases dimple diminishers and lavender which soothes for up to 6 hours.  It works with your body's nighttime restorative process to tighten up your legs.  The scent is calming and the cream is very softening.  I feel a tingling sensation and in the morning there is heat being emitted from my legs which makes me believe something is happening.  I also purchased the fatgirl slimulator, a tool you use to rub in the the cream which promises to "move fat-trapping fluids out of thick thighs" and "pummel your fat pockets".  Time will tell if these products work, but I don't intend the rely solely on this cream.  Diet and exercise matter!

I'm playing catch-up from the last 2 days.  Here goes...


Workout:  Cardio tennis class - 1 hour
Breakfast:  Weight Watchers bar 1, coffee 1
Lunch: Weight Watchers Frozen meal – 5, diet coke
Snack: mini cupcake -3
Dinner: fresh linguini with (5) fat free Organic Garlic and Merlot pasta sauce by Rising moon organics (0), Boca meatless ground crumbles (1)
Dessert: Organic Rice Divine-non-dairy banana fudge dessert- 3

I only ate 19 points. I should be eating 26 but wasn’t hungry enough to keep eating.


I was feeling really lousy today and had a lot of excuses not to go to the gym…3 kids, ballet class, a messy home, a home depot run to fix the shower, shopping for outfits for our family photos.  Plus, my body is SUPER sore from the various exercises and crampy.  I don’t know what part of my body hates me more….my calves, my butt, my biceps—the pain extends down to my wrists as I type this.  I am sore to the point of being nauseas.  And right now, I’d much rather be FAT.   BUT I did get into that gym today…I had only about 30 minutes and I felt sluggish.  I rode the bike for 10 minutes and then got on the treadmill.  I walked, raised the incline and ran, then walked again for 20 minutes.  I also parked on the far side of the mall from where I needed to go, so I got in extra walking as I did my errands.

Breakfast:  Egg beaters ¼ cup (2), 1 slice wheat toast (2), coffee with low fat milk (1)
Snack: Weight watchers bar (1)
Lunch:  Rainbow roll (3), miso soup (2), edamame (1), diet coke
Dinner:  Steamed white meat chicken (3), steamed vegetables (1), egg drop soup (1), wine (4)
Snack:  Tea (1)
Dessert: Pinkberry-coconut flavored with kiwi and ½ oz. chocolate shavings (4)

Total Points:  26

By the way, what are your thoughts on the new look of the blog?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Letting go

"When I practice, I am a philosopher,
When I teach, I am a scientist,
When I demonstrate, I am an artist."
B.K.S Iyengar

Last night I was in heaven. With bolsters, blocks and blankets I was able to stretch and relax my back, my shoulders and most of all, my mind.

I took an Iyengar Yoga class which is based on the teachings of B.K.S. Iyengar and emphasizes the precision and alignment of postures or "asanas". We worked on "restoratives"and began and ended with shavasana, that is, when you lay on the floor and relax your entire body. Immediately I felt the tension in my body disappear. There are tremendous benefits to this- it rejuvenates the body by resting the central nervous system and delivers oxygenated blood to internal organs. We did an inversion pose called "legs up the wall" or Viparita Karani which is supposed to positively affect the endocrine system and helps with fatigue and exhaustion. The poses in this class put the body in the anabolic state of metabolism when the cells can repair themselves.

I can attest to the fact that this makes a difference in how you feel and I am fairly certain, this class was instrumental in helping me lose weight this week. It allowed me to "let go" of all the stress. The entire weekend had been dedicated to tennis lessons, a soccer game, hosting a tea party for 10 3 year olds, and I took this much needed time for me. It made all the difference in my stress level and I woke up feeling like my core was stronger.

I HIGHLY recommend trying this - it's given me renewed strength as I start another week.

A taste of success!

I had to bring the kids with me to my Weight Watchers meeting.  After I weighed in, my 3 and 4 year olds grabbed my tummy and yelled,
"your tummy isn't as big anymore mom!!!"

I am pleased to announce that I have LOST (yes, LOST) 3.4 lbs this week!  FINALLY!  The scale is moving a little bit and that's giving me some real encouragement and confidence to move into this next week.  I battled a 3 year old's tea party (complete with cupcakes), the snack stand at my son's soccer game, a night out to dinner and a playdate with pizza to complete my goal of actually LOSING this week.

Now, how do you CELEBRATE when you are not supposed to eat or drink a lot??? Any suggestions? I would typically have a fabulous cocktail or order in dinner-something fantastic!  Any fun ideas????

Here's my weekend update (note: numbers in parenthesis are weight watchers points):

Workout: Took the day off-needed to catch up on housework!
Breakfast: Coffee (1,) South beach Living peanut butter bar -which are delicious (3)
Snack: 1 bite of scone (1)
Lunch: Mission life balance whole wheat tortilla (2), chicken (3), spinach (0), mustard, diet coke, water
Dinner: vodka (2), Salad with edamame, crab and shrimp, avocado (I had the chef leave off the chinese noodles) (5), 2 small wheat dinner rolls (4) 2 oz. chicken breast (4), wine (2)

Total points:  27

Workout: 30 minutes elliptical, 20 minutes on treadmill
Breakfast:  South Beach Living peanut butter bar (4)
Lunch:  Chicken in tortilla, mustard (4)
Snack: 1 bite of my kid's strawberry shortcake ice cream bar. (yum-1)
Dinner:  Salad (2), Sushi (6), sake (4)
Dessert:  tested out the cupcakes I made for my daughter's tea party (5)

Total Points: 26

Workout:  Evening Iyengar yoga class-Yogaworks
Breakfast:  Taste tested tea  party snacks (3) - not a great idea to "skip" breakfast
Lunch:  Chicken salad sandwich (5), tea, rice (4)
Snack:  tea party leftovers (approx. 6)
Dinner:  homemade weight watchers beef and broccoli (2), brown rice (2) wine (4)

Total Points:  26

Friday, September 25, 2009

Beware the Gyro

Last night my daughter and I went shopping and stopped for something to eat at Chicken Dijon Rotisserie Grill.  I hadn’t been there before and was trying to order for husband who has dietary limitations and for my picky 3 year old.  When it was my turn, I had a line of people behind me.  I spazzed.  “I’ll have the gyro” I told the man behind the counter and then felt my pulse race.  What did I just do?  All I know is that it’s lamb and beef-unaware of calories or Weight Watchers points.  I started to sweat and knew this was the kiss of death – “know before you go” is the mantra that is repeated during my Weight Watchers meetings.  I try my hardest but life gets in the way—we rushed out the door to have time together, I needed to worry about my family and of course, I was HUNGRY. I SHOULD HAVE JUST ORDERED THE SALAD!  I tried to research the nutritional values when I got home and I found conflicting information online – on the Weight Watchers website it says 15 points, but they don’t indicate if this is just the meat or it’s the entire sandwich.  Various websites indicate that there is between 200-630 calories but do not indicate the size of the pita. That is a huge range.  I went ahead and journaled 15 points and was disgusted with myself-I didn't have the points to spare.   I lost control and I hate that I have to feel guilty about every single thing I eat right now. I was disappointed I got 7/8 of the way through my day and then sabotaged myself.  I have to keep my chin up and start over tomorrow and of course remember to “know before I go”.  I wasn’t even able to enjoy it!  Here’s my day yesterday:

I worked out with my trainer today
5 minute warm-up on treadmill
back, chest, shoulders, biceps with jumping jacks and running man in between
20 minutes walking- 1.1 miles at 3.3 incline

Eating Right Steel Cut Oatmeal with apples and raisins (4)

Balance bar (4)

Lunch:  Whole wheat bread 2 slices (2), 2 oz turkey breast (2), light mayo (1)

Snack:  1 slice whole wheat bread, 1 oz turkey breast, ¼ slice cheese (4)

Gyro (15), 8 french fries (3)
Diet coke
Wine (2)

Points: 35 (over by 7)

Tomorrow is another day!

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Originally uploaded by Abo 3li

I’m getting cranky and having a hard time with the pressure of all this. I feel like from the minute I get up I am thinking, or obsessing rather, about what I can or can’t eat. I am consumed with questions like: How will I get through today’s playdate with pizza? Did I move enough? Am I really able to take today off from working out? I feel guilty but my body is sore, my mind is tense and I’m going to fall off the wagon.

Typically I would recommend to someone on a diet to bring a salad to the playdate instead of pizza but I’m fried. I had way too much to do with the kids and having plumber here all day and I didn’t get a chance to fix a salad. I can’t be “prepared” all day every day!

I didn’t workout yesterday but I do count chasing 3 kids around and following baby Luke down the street several times as a little cardio. I’m still so sore from yoga! I can feel it in my core and in my arms and it feels like I’m making a little progress…I guess.

Here’s what I ate. It was a bit of a challenge at the end of the day…

2 poached eggs, 1 lowfat wheat bread toast (5)
coffee (1)

Salad with 2 oz chicken (3)
Lots of water

½ a plum (.5)

Dinner at 5
2 slices of cheese pizza (12)

By 7:30 I was STARVING. I still had 4.5 points to use so I looked around for something that would satisfy me. I took a look around the kitchen and decide on:

Lean Cuisine- Tortilla Crusted Fish (7)
Wine 1.5 glasses (3)

For a grand total of: 31.5 points

So I ended up going over by 5.5 points which should be okay because I didn’t use any of the 35 extra for the week and I didn’t add in any points for working out. I started second-guessing how many points I should get, since I was so hungry. I recalculated using and found that I should add 2 more points since I can truly say I am “walking most of the time” instead of “occasionally sitting but mainly standing”. Is it actually possible I could not be eating enough and my metabolism is slowing down? I doubt it but it gives me some sort of hope that I will start to lose. Obviously a change has to be made to move that scale!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I heart Coach Mo

If you're tuning into "The Biggest Loser" you have already been inspired by Coach Mo.  If you're not watching, it's only 2 weeks in so you still have time to get to know this lovable leader.  As a contestant with a starting weight of 355, he has already lost 28 lbs in the first 2 weeks.  He's married with 6 kids and is a youth mentor who has coached basketball, football and track and field.

His calm, steady demeanor and life experience makes him the patriarch of this group. When faced with the dilemma of all 15 players having to work as a unit lose 150 lbs in a week (otherwise 2 people would go home), the group looked to Coach Mo.  He shared his infinite wisdom which I will take with me this week:

1.  You need to have a GAME PLAN.
2.  You have to work together as a TEAM.
3.  You need to employ AN EXPERT like Danny since he has previous experience with week 2.
4.  You need to have a positive MENTALITY.

 He truly cares for everyone and was actually crushed to see Alexandra leave the first week. So far, Coach seems to be the only person in the house truly sympathetic to Tracy, his partner, who lost steam in the first episdoe and ended up in the hospital.  He has the patience of a saint for her annoying, whiny personality and is a better person than I. He seems to find his own inner strength by cheering on and inspiring others.  He delivers a clear message and believes in what he is saying.  I don't see any chance he will lose his will to fight this weight and believe he's a frontrunner for the top 3 contestants.  

I also may heart Curtis Stone, celebrity chef, who made an appearance on last night's show.  I call myself a "foodie" yet had never heard of this adorable Australian chef and host of "Take Home Chef" on TLC.  Curtis has a thing for organic and natural foods and fresh ingredients.  He shared some valuable information including the fact that a fast food Chicken Caesar Salad would set you back 1,010 calories.  And did I mention he was voted one of People Magazine's "Sexiest Men Alive"?
I think he has a new "Biggest Fan".


I have done or “practiced” (as accomplished yogi’s like to say) yoga plenty of times but never at a place quite like Yogaworks. Yesterday I met my good friend Lisa in El Segundo, California for a class called “Yoga Flow”. Walking in to Yogaworks I knew I was at the Mecca of studios and amongst the yoga elite. The 2nd floor studio has a spa-like atmosphere that immediately transformed my mood and took my heart rate down a level. The soothing d├ęcor of bamboo creates a warm space and the smell of various tension-easing teas filled the air.

Being a newcomer to Yogaworks was a bit intimidating -- plenty of attractive women with lean, yet muscular figures, speaking in hushed tones.  But I had my girl Lisa, an active yogi and instructor, with me for moral support. There’s the etiquette…where do I put my shoes? How loud can I talk? What equipment do I get? How close together should I sit to other people? There is an entire yoga vernacular that needs to be learned – words like Kundalini, Hatha and Ishta. And as many times as I take yoga, I can’t for the life of me figure out the simple act of breathing. But I continue to be fascinated at how all these women stay slim and trim.

The Yoga Flow class is a unique combination of Ashtanga, Iyengar and Viniyoga. I’m not quite sure what all of that means but I do know that, together, the class helped to build up the heat in my body and was a cardio-vascular workout as well…which may be what I can’t raise my arms and my entire body is sore today. At the start of class, I became centered and relaxed, ready for a great workout…until the fire alarm went off. I refocused and continued my “practice” with plenty of downward facing dogs, planks and Chataurangas (I think they are the same thing?). The class was taught by Romy Phillips, who perhaps has the world’s most soothing voice and could easily sell me a CD of her reading me a bedtime story. The end of class was the most rewarding—approximately 5 minutes of laying on the floor, thinking about nothing, which allowed my mind to drift into full relaxation mode. Slowly Romy had us turn to our side and eventually sit up. With 3 kids I haven’t been able to get up like this in about 5 years. Generally, I awake to the “fire drill” of three babies screaming for me. For me, that was worth the price of admission. 

I was thrilled with my class and the calming benefits it had on me. After it was over, I felt like I could do anything. I was in a unique state of relaxation with increased energy and I was able to maintain this for the rest of the day.  My muscles are much more sore than when I “lift”. Utilizing your own body weight provides some phenomenal results that are immediate.  My arms and core already feel stronger and I actually feel SKINNIER today!

Yogaworks offers hundreds of classes at various levels, their "signature" classes, pilates, sculptworks, rehabilitative and even family yoga. They have yoga "advisors" on hand to answer all your questions and 23 studios within Los Angeles, Orange County, the Bay Area and New York.  The studio seems to have a huge following amongst the stars.  After my experience, I was sold and ended up buying a membership.  So you’ll get to hear so much more as I master my breathing, attempt new classes, learn the terms, make friends and continue my “practice”.


Yesterday’s food intake:

1 poached egg (2), 1 slice wheat toast (2) , 3 sprays can’t believe it’s not butter (then what is it?), coffee (1)
5 points

Snack: 1 banana, vitamin water (1)

Lunch:  Salad with Tempeh, Veggie Steak, from the Veggie Grill (4) Sweet potato fries (3) sauce (3)
Iced Tea
10 points

Cornmeal crusted chicken with nectarine salsa (A fantastic Weight Watchers Recipe). (6)
Broccoli (0)
Brown basmati rice ()
Spinach salad (1)
Wine – (2)

Dessert:  WW Cranberry raisin pudding (4)

29 points (over by 3)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Back in Business

Okay, I’m done feeling sorry for myself.  With the help of good friends and a sweet and loving husband, I have bounced back.   I do realize there are an infinite number of things going on in the world that are far worse than gaining .2 lbs.  Also, I forgot to mention that the fries and the cupcake probably didn’t help last week either.  I’m just trying to figure out how to feel good, fit my ass into some 7 jeans and still have a little bit (make that a lot of fun).  Isn't that what life should Not quite sure it’s possible.

After I was done pouting I went shopping at Bristol Farms, which is overpriced but everything just looks so damn good.  Plus, it's right next door to Weight Watchers.

This week’s shopping list (all items are organic):

Frozen berries
Lowfat vanilla yogut
Low fat chocolate soy milk
Red fat  All natural peanut butter
2% milk
Medium ripe avocados
Seedless cucumbers
Bottled fat free salsa
Canola oil
Fat free egg substitute
Garlic cloves
Fresh ginger
1 lb. boneless sirloin steak
3 (12 inch) bamboo skewers
yellow cornmeal
5 5oz. skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

I can't seem to get the math right, because I under-indulged and did not eat enough yesterday.  The numbers in parenthesis are the number of Weight Watchers Points. Here's what I did:

Workout: cardio tennis –one hour

Breakfast: Western egg white sandwich at Subway (4 pt. 229 calories), coffee (1)
Snack:  Melon (1)
Lunch:  Salad with Tuna tataki (3)
Dinner:  Made Weight Watchers Indonesian Satay (4) with salad, ¼ of a sweet potato (1) and broccoli (0)
Dessert- Made WW Cranberry raisin rice pudding (4)

Total: 18 points.  This is 8 points short of what I am supposed to eat.  I was uber-conscious of not eating too much.

Here are the Weight Watchers recipes.  Both came from the “In No Time” cookbook with recipes that take under 20 minutes.

Serves 4, Prep: 5 min. Cook 5 min.

¼ cup packed cilantro leaves (before using let leaves sit in bowl of water for 5 minutes to remove any sand)
2 garlic cloves quartered
2 tbls. Water
1 tbls. Minced peeled fresh ginger
2 tsp. Asian (dark) sesame oil
1 lb. boneless sirloin steak

  1. Place 4 (12 inch) bamboo skewers in a large glass of water and soak for 10 min. Spray broiler pan with nonstick spray and preheat broiler.
  1. Grind the cilantro, garlic, water, ginger and sesame oil in a mini food processor, a spice grinder or a blender until paste-like.  Working in a shallow bowl, rub the paste into the beef strips.
  1. Drain the skewers.  Thread the beef strips onto them, piercing each strip in at least two places so it will lie flat.
  1. Broil 5 inches from the heat, turning once until cooked through, about 6 min.  Serve warm or at room temp.
Per serving (1 skewer) 155 cals, 6 g fat, 2 g sat fat, 0 g. trans fat, 60 mg chol, 45 mg. Sod, 1 g. Carb, 0 g. Fib, 23 g. Prot, 9 mg Calc. WW POINTS-4

Serves 6, Prep 10 min., cook 10 min.

2 cups cooked brown rice (I used leftover brown rice for the Chinese food we ordered)
1 ½ cups reduced fat (2%) milk
½ cup sugar
¼ cup raisins
¼ cup dried cranberries
¼ tsp almond extract
¼ teaspoon cinnamon

  1. Combine the rice, milk, sugar, raisins, and cranberries in a med. Saucepan.  Bring mixture to a boil over high heat.  Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens slightly, about 5 min.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat, then stir in the almond extract and cinnamon.  Serve at once, let cool to room temp. or cover and refrigerate and serve cold.
Per serving (scant ½ cup)  202 cals, 2 g Fat, 1 g Sat Fat, 0 g. Trans Fat, 5 mg Chol, 213 mg Sod, 43 g Carb, 3g Fib, 4g Prot, 79 mg. Calc.  WW POINTS: 4

Monday, September 21, 2009

The Ultimate Pity Party

I’m having a pity party.  A full-blown pity BASH.  You are all invited.  I’m thinking pizza with sausage, fettuccini alfredo, In ‘n’ Out burgers (animal style), my friend Aimee’s amazing chocolate chip cookies, Cold Stone Creamery Ice Cream cake.  Plus, lots and lots of booze with highly caloric mixers.

I weighed in at Weight Watchers. After what I thought was a very successful week, I gained .2 lbs.  I realize this isn't a tremendous amount of weight. But it's the WRONG DIRECTION! Fighting back tears, I told our leader…”But I worked out 5 days this week, started tennis, power walked and BLOGGED for God’s sake!” I’ve been attending Weight Watchers meetings for a year now.  I sat down in my chair and then felt the tears start to well up.  I tried so hard not to blink so they wouldn’t roll down my face.  I had baby Luke with me in his little car/stroller and looked for the quickest escape.  Before the meeting started I headed for the door.  I looked at my good friend Melissa and said “I can’t do this today.  I can’t sit here and listen to all of this.”  I didn’t want to hear everyone’s success stories and the very obvious things they were doing to lose weight.  I didn’t want anyone telling me, “hang in there, the weight will come off next week.” It’s been 6 months since I’ve lost.  I don’t want to hear it.  I can’t stand when people are “Masters of the Obvious” and ask me questions like “are you switching up your exercise regime?”  “Are you eating too many carbs?” “Have you checked your thyroid?”

Yes. No. And Yes.

My personal favorite is “Are you working out too much?”  Really? Uh, apparently not.

I’m was about to give in and just let myself be fat and happy but then I remembered this blog and what I promised myself and my readers (if you’re out there!) I would do.

So, I need to assess this situation.  First, I need to wipe this so-called “waterproof” mascara off my face.  I really am a positive person and try to have the glass is half full mentality.  Let’s look at where I’ve been and where I can go…

Things I did right:
1.  Worked out 5 times this week.
2.  Signed up for cardio tennis
3.  Went on a power walk
4.  Researched and ordered the right thing when we got Chinese take out (steamed chicken and veggies (sauce on the side), egg foo yung, steamed dumplings
5.  Wrote down everything I ate-except for Saturday and Sunday.

Thing I could have done better:
1. Less alcohol
2. Should have written down my food for Saturday and Sunday
3. Stop taking bites of the kids food.  Let my husband make sure the mac and cheese or chicken fingers aren’t “too hot”.
4. We probably ate out too much this weekend.  It’s difficult to use portion control and know our points.
5.  Find out how many points are in the sushi rolls we like to eat.

Steps I’m taking this week:

1.  My doctor had suggested a cholesterol test and blood test to see where my hormone levels are.  I’m going to schedule this appointment. I’m not sure what this will do for me but I have to do something.

2. I bought fun waters that look pretty in a wine glass.  That’s what I’m going to drink with my meal this week instead of wine.

3.  Consider training for a half marathon.  I’ve already been on the website for the Disney half marathon.  My friend Rachael from high school suggested we run together many months ago.  To be honest, I’m afraid of what would happen after I stopped training. I’ve run a half marathon before and when I stopped running I gained a lot of weight back.  Running is probably my least favorite activity but maybe I will face that head on.

4.  Less Eating out.  I've already done my shopping and provided the family with healthy options for this week...lots of veggies, fresh fruit, lean meats.

5. Be patient. I’m certainly not making excuses but my hormones may indeed be out of whack right now.  There are certain weeks a woman’s body retains water. This might be one of them.  I’m going to cut myself a bit of a break and just take one day at a time.

Let's put that pity party on hold for now.  I'm going to stay POSITIVE.  If you’ve got any quality suggestions on how to pick yourself up and dust yourself off, please let me know!

Friday, September 18, 2009

A Breath of Fresh Air

   You can't beat the ocean breeze, the sight of surfers hanging ten, and the waves crashing on the shore.  My friend Gloria suggested we go for a "power walk" on the strand in Manhattan Beach, California this morning.  After dropping our preschoolers off, we met at the pier.  During our 3 mile walk we spent time looking at the gorgeous houses that line the strand.  It was therapeutic to talk with someone else who is dealing with the challenges of raising little ones (particularly the preschool girls!)  We called it our "therapy walk".  Although we lives so close to the beach, we don't always take time to enjoy the view.  We meet new friends but only have time to wave as our children lead us to their classes or to the park.  Time with the kids is important but time away is precious as well.  It was a fabulous workout, an opportunity to connect with someone new and literally grab a breath of fresh air.

I have to admit, that on a Friday night after a week of working hard, I WENT FOR IT.

Breakfast: egg beaters and 1 egg (3), wheat toast (2), coffee (1)

Lunch: Blue Horizon organic mini crab cake bites 6 (10 points) , salad (2)

Snack: cheesestick and crackers (4)

Dinner:  Here's where things fall apart....
We went to the Marmalade cafe...
Shared spinach, artichoke dip (?)
Ate some of the kids noodles and quesadillas (testing out how hot the were...sort of)
Ate 1/2 of my seared tuna and all of my wasabi mashed potatoes since the tuna was undercooked for my liking
Drank the vodka and cranberry my husband ordered while I was in the restroom.
Glass of merlot

Dessert: Pinkberry- coconut with captain crunch, strawberries and chocolate puffs.  SO worth it!

So, this is why I prefer to eat in and cook.  I lose count so it's very difficult to manage the weight watchers points.  Above the 26 I am allotted, I have 35 extra to use during the week and I tend to save them for times like this when I can't count.  Also, I have not been giving myself extra points for workouts.  Only the scale knows...stay tuned for Monday!

Thank God tomorrow is another day!

how fast do you run?

My loving husband and I were talking about running pace. Mine is apparently REALLY slow. I've tried to convince him that it should be slow since I'm only 5'2 and my legs are probably less than 3 feet. Please, I need your feedback. How fast do you run?

Malibu Fish Grill

I have a new go-to restaurant when I want healthy options and to stay on track with my eating.

If you are in Southern California try Malibu Fish Grill, with locations in Redondo Beach, Huntington Beach and Santa Ana.  The menu includes fresh seafood, chicken and steak that can be served as skewers, wraps, tacos on a salad or in a rice bowl.  Sides include hummus, pitas, grilled zucchini, rice. fruit salad and of course french fries. Beware of the amazing french fries!

I ordered two tacos on corn tortillas, one with Alaskan Pollack, the other with Mahi Mahi.  But given all the healthy choices, admittedly, I dug into my kids' french fries.  I'm telling you, these were the PERFECT fries...not too crispy, but just right.   I couldn't stop.  I probably enjoyed about 25.  The kids enjoyed their meals as well and actually finished everything on their plates!

Here's how the rest of my day shaped up yesterday:

Workout:  Ran 2.5 miles in 30 minutes at various inclines and speeds.

Breakfast:  Eating Right steel cut oatmeal with apples & raisins (4), coffee with silk (1)

Lunch:  2 grilled fish tacos (corn tortillas) (approx. 7), 25 french fries (about 10 points YIKES!) , cole slaw (3)

Snack:  Turkey and cheese (2)

Dinner: Healthy Choice:  Chicken Alfredo Florentine (4), Mixed Green salad with avocado, tomato and gorgonzola cheese (3)  Red Wine (6)

Total: 30 points.  I was really, really hungry today and I went over my 26 points.  But I feel like I did my best.  Occasionally when there is something I want to have I find it best to have it, be done with it, and move on to the next day.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Shochu- the new love in my life.

Last night, my husband went to a japanese restaurant, Gonpachi in Beverly Hills (other locations include Tokyo and Fukuoka.)  I had my first experience with shochu (pronounced "show chu"), which means "fiery liquor" in Japanese. It's a clear distilled beverage made from a variety of starches and grains such as barley, buckwheat, rice, potato and sweet potato. Shochu is often compared to vodka, yet has a much lower alcohol content, approximately 25%, yet is stronger than wine or saki. In fact shochu now outsells saki. It is extremely versatile and can be enjoyed neat, on the rocks, mixed with a variety of things inlcuding hot or cold water.  I even tried mine with diet coke...awesome!

Best of all, shochu is LOW IN CALORIES- about 35 calories in 2 oz.  Japanese medical researchers have found that shochu can be effective in preventing thrombosis and activates enzymes that inhibit the growth of blood clots and prevents strokes and heart attacks.  It also leaves you with little or no hangover.

Shigechiyo Izumi, who once held the Guiness Book of World's Records for the oldest living person at 120 years old, was said to have made drinking shochu part of his daily routine.

Here's the problem...they are so good I had 4!

Here's how my day went yesterday:

Breakfast: Egg beaters (1) omelet with broccoli and 1/4 cup lowfat mozzarella cheese (2)
2 cups of OJ (2)
Coffee (1)
Total:  6
Lunch:  Whole Wheat burrito (1) with halibut (3), broccoli, 1/8 cup brown rice (1), 1/8 cup lowfat mozzarella cheese (2), 1 tbsp. fat free sour cream (1), 2 tbsp. salsa
Seltzer water
Total:  8

Dinner at Gonpachi:
I shared:
ebi shingo-crispy shrimp dumping with chili sauce
hamachi (yellowtail) - 1 piece.
Caterpillar roll - Eel and cucumber topped with avocado
Red Dragon roll- shrimp tempura, tuna, asparagus, avocado, 3 types of caviar
Scallop Sumi-yaki
Chilean sea bass Sumi-yaki
Albacore tataki
About 17 points?

Here's the issue with sushi.  I lose count of my Weight Watchers points.  It's a guilty pleasure, I allow myself to enjoy stress free.

Meow, Moo, March and Kick!

It is often difficult to find time to do it, clean the house, exercise and spend time with our families.  I found a DVD that presents the opportunity to consolidate the latter two, "MOM AND TODDLER FITNESS" by Parents, for parents and their children, 16 months and up.

In a gentle and serene environment, Jillian Moriarity and her baby Max, combine yoga poses and pilates for a quality workout.    The DVD includes plenty of aerobic exercise including "Joey Jump-ups" and "March and Kick".  I was thrilled to see my 17 month old son, Luke actually try to march!  Jillian lead us through strength exercises including lunges, sumo squats and giving the baby an airplane ride.  While these moves may sound easy, I was doing these moves while holding a baby weighing approximately 25 lbs...ouch!

Little Luke was hysterical laughing while I moved toward him roaring like a lion, meowing and mooing.  Yes, I felt a little stupid, but quickly got over it when I saw how much he loved it!   If your child is disinterested in the moves, Jillian provides modifications that allow you to move around them or toward them.  My son was captured by the babies and watched intently.  The cool down includes some much needed cuddle time with your baby.  I really enjoyed this time with baby Luke and realized I needed to SLOW DOWN and literally hold on to what is truly most important to me.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Biggest Loser

Last night I was intrigued, horrified, inspired and in awe of the new contestants on THE BIGGEST LOSER.  Out of the gate, the contestants were forced to run a mile, sending two of them to the hospital.  I thought it was a bit extreme given the severity of their obesity.  It seemed a bit irresponsible of the producers to do something like this and the contestants would have been better served to ease into things.   I'd love to know what these folks were eating all week too.  Although it's impressive to lose, 17, 19, even 20 lbs in a week-it seems near impossible to do it in a healthy manner.  I know one thing, there's no way I would want to train with Bob or Jillian screaming in my face.  Those contestants are stronger than I!

The most touching story was Abby Rike, 5 foot 4 weighing in at 247.  She revealed that she had a husband, a 5-year-old daughter and a newborn son.  They were all killed in 2006 by a speeding motorist.  As she spoke, I started sobbing, wondering what it would be like to lose my entire support system and the people who love me the most and motivate me each day.  I can't even begin to imagine how that feels.  I was touched by her statement about why she will succeed at losing the weight:

"Death doesn't scare me," she said. "Death would be an easier choice for me. ... It's getting up and taking that step that's hard. There's not anyone else. It is just for me. So I get up and I give it my best."

Here's what my day looked like yesterday:

Workout: I switched to an evening workout-that's a bit out of my comfort zone.  I'm used to working out in the morning.  I was a bit fatigued by the time I hit the gym, but it was good.  I think I might be keeping my body and metabolism on it's toes!  I spent 30 minutes on the elliptical at various intensities.  I followed it up with 100 sit-ups and 25 leg lifts on each leg.

Food intake:
2 eggs  - 4 points

coffee - 1 point
Cupcake - 7 points
Small serving of Pasta – 4
Salad with chicken- 4
Halibut ½ steak- I baked the fish for 20 minutes with lemon juice and a little bit of seasalt. - 3
Brown rice ½ cup            2 points
Broccoli            0 points
Wine            4 points
TOTAL:  26

What were your thoughts on last night's show? Did you think it was too much too soon? Could you work out with Jillian and Bob? Do their tactics motivate you?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Tuscan "pitza"

My tennis class yesterday was fantastic!  I was able to work out several muscles I don't normally get to.   Interestingly, I stepped on my Wii this morning and I LOST 2.6 lbs overnight.  Must be a fluke!
So here's how the day looked yesterday:
Breakfast - 1 small yogurt (1)
Snack- Vitamin Water (0)
Lunch- 4 oz chicken breast (3), salad (green pepper, dill, lettuce, tomatoes), gorgonzola cheese (3), Ken's sweet Vidalia onion lite 1 tablespoon (1)
Snack - Spice -spiced flaxseed chips (5)
Dinner- Tuscan "Pitza"s (7) from the Weight Watcher's "In No Time" cookbook- SO easy and delicious.
Snack- = 1/2 pitza (3)
Dessert- wine (4)
Total points= 27
You can also make the up to 3 hours before, just add on a couple minutes more of cooking time.:
Serves 4, Prep: 5 minutes, Cook: 8 minutes
1 15 oz. can of cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. fresh sage
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
4 6 inch pitas
1 cup fat fee ricotta cheese
12 cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup freshly grated Parm. cheese
1.  Preheat the oven to 475. Spray baking sheet with nonstick spray.
2.  combine the beans, lemon juice, oil, sage and pepper in a med. bowl, mix with a wooden spoon mashing the beans.
3.  Spread each pita with 1/4 of the bean mixture, 1/4 cup ricotta cheese, 6 tomato halves and 1 tbsp of Parmesan cheese. Place on the baking sheet and bake until hot and pitas are crisp, about 8 minutes.
It was really easy and very delicious!

The Time of my Life

I am incredibly saddened by the death of Patrick Swayze.  When I saw "Dirty Dancing" in the theatre in Malverne, New York in 1987, I had never seen anyone quite like him.  He was confident, sexy, and a man who could dance like no one I had ever seen.  His cool demeanor, muscular build and bold hip slinging had every girl wanting to be "baby".  My sisters and friends and I would listen to the songs and try to emulate the moves.  I was so taken by the dance in "The Time of My Life", the walk down the aisle and the lift, who could forget the lift!  I had it play as the last song at my wedding.  I will be forever grateful to Patrick for being apart of my adolescense and for his incredible ability to entertain.

Rest in Peace, Patrick.  Thanks to you, we've had the time of our lives.

Take a minute to check out the scene we all remember:


Monday, September 14, 2009

Tennis Anyone?

The U.S. Open has me fired up about tennis!

Tonight I'm suiting up for my first CARDIO TENNIS class with one of my best buddies, Aimee.  I got myself a sweet new Wilson Nano Carbon tennis racquet, some balls and a new Nike top.  I'm ready to move and groove, ready to take out all my stress and aggression on those tennis balls.  My husband was tired of hearing me TALK about taking lessons so I finally signed myself up.

I weighed in today at Weight Watchers. I was REALLY BITTER to find out that I had actually GAINED .4 lbs!!! Soooo ANNOYING!!! I'm so mad and discouraged I don't quite know what to do.  I need to calm down, breathe and start the week over.  It's not bad enough that I gained but I just started a BLOG about it...I wasn't too excited to report the fact that I FAILED this week, but I need to speak the truth! I'm sort of fed up but like I tell my kids, you can't quit, you just have to get back up and play ball if you want to win. are a few things I'm going to change this week.

1.)  I've added the cardio tennis.
2.)  I'm going to cut back on the alcohol.  (geeezzz! that's not going to be easier but I know my consumption may be stifling the weight loss).
3.)  I'm going to be much more diligent about writing down the points I eat.
4.) I'll try not to "snack" off of the kids plates. (kids food is so good!)

Any other tips???????????

Here's this week's shopping list to get me started:

baby spinach leaves
Cherry tomatoes
Mixed Greens
Chicken breast
Fat free egg substitute
Skim milk
Whole milk
American cheese
Fresh grated parmesean cheese
Cannellini beans
Pinto beans
Wheat bread
Steel cut oatmeal

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Back in the groove

I'm back in the groove.  I needed to get back in the gym but I took it slow today.  I'm easing into the new week, I think I might have burned myself out toward the end of last week.

Here's what today looked like:
Workout:  bike 5 min warmup, ran 30 minutes (between 2 and 6 incline -1.7 miles), 5 minute cool down.
Breakfast: yogurt & 1/2 banana
Lunch:  Went to Martha's 22nd Street Grill in Hermosa Beach- ordered a diet coke and a salad with tofu and eggplant...interesting and delicious!

Snack:  Some of my daughters popcorn.

Dinner:  Chicken picatta (julienned veggies instead of pasta) from Fritto Misto, 2 small slices bread, 2 glasses of wine.