Fried Tilapia – Skip The W(h)ine If You Want To!

I am in pain. A lot of pain. I have been going to the gym now two or three times a week since my last post, doing my running app and lifting weights. Coming home and doing my squats so that I can have a nice looking backside for the first time in my life. Thursday night it snowed, so I ramped up my running workout and cut the weights out so that I could get home before the roads got too bad. Yesterday I decided to pull out the stops on my workout to make up for it. I also switched from running on the treadmill to running on the elliptical because my ankles were complaining about Thursday’s workout. That elliptical is no joke. I’ve used one before because I prefer not having the high impact on my poor weak ankles, but I’d forgotten just how serious of a workout it was. I was sweating through the very same Couch to 5K workout that I had done on Thursday on the treadmill without breaking a sweat. And it was nice. I may have to continue to use those ellipticals.

So back to the pain. I’m just sore – I haven’t overdone it or pulled anything yet. Although when my ankle started complaining on Friday I got concerned. I haven’t felt my poor ankles complain like that since junior high! But I will tell you – getting back in shape takes commitment because I have been nothing but sore and tired for two weeks now. I’m not complaining, because I have been enjoying the workouts. When I get off work, I swear that I am not going to go to the gym because I am so tired, but by the time I get there I am psyched to start my workout. And I feel like a million bucks when I am done. It has been great to go to the gym and work out all of the stress that I have accumulated. Hopefully I am a much more pleasant person to be around because of it. You’d have to ask everyone else, because I am around myself all the time, and I wouldn’t know.

Another thing that this has allowed me to do is take a look at my priorities. Actually I am not sure that is how I would word it. It may be more like growing a backbone. Any way you word it, I have been trying to identify pieces of my life that I am not happy with and trying to figure out how to change it or make it better. Simplifying. Talking to the people involved and figuring out how to change things. I am not a big talker. I tend to wait until I am about to lose my mind before I say anything. When you are tired and sore, you tend to lose your mind quicker, so talking becomes a priority. People tend to react negatively when you lose your mind.

You must be looking at the title of this post and thinking,”Okay, she has really lost it. Fried stuff? Yeah, that’s what I thought at first, too. I have been fixing tilapia the same way for a long time, and it has gotten really, really old. To the point that I would refuse to fix it. So my wonderful fiancé recommended getting some almond meal and using it on the fish to fry it or bake it. Well, if I am going to use almond meal, I want to fry it. Fried fish is just awesome. Fried anything is awesome! (Can you tell that the workouts are making me extremely hungry as well?) I have been a huge fan of the Whole 30 program, and they recommend not Paleo-fying unhealthy recipes because it could cause bad habits. I am definitely not going to start posting Paleo brownies or cookies because I really do think that would be unfair to my brain, but the fried fish was a much needed, very awesome change. And the clean-up was amazing, too! Almond meal doesn’t get all gummy and nasty in the pan like flour does when you fry it, so the clean-up was not a nightmare like I expected it to be.

I haven’t hit on a spice mixture that I like yet, in amounts that I like. I tend to like my food on the spicy side – I like to taste the flavors – so I am still working on that. In my first batch of fish I used garlic powder, salt, pepper, onion powder, paprika, and red pepper flakes. In fact, this is the recipe that I used for my first batch. I will work on tweaking the amounts or using different spices to suit my tastes, but this recipe was a much welcome change from the way that I have normally been cooking tilapia. I also used coconut oil instead of olive oil because I heard that it works better at higher temperatures, and I hate the smell of olive oil when it gets hot.

Hope you enjoy it! And thanks to Cavemom Chronicles for the inspiration. And to my fiancé, of course!

Lessons Learned – A New Year Do-Over

Yes, I wussed out again. Remember when I told you about the girl that I work with who does CrossFit? And how excited I was about it? And how I was going to renew my focus on being able to do CrossFit in the new year? That was great, and a great feeling, but great feelings can’t get you through a workout. As some of you know, I have been doing CrossFit workouts at home for about six months now, although not all that consistently. The day after I posted that post, I looked up the workout for CrossFit Greensboro. It was a Saturday, and I was pumped.

Until I saw the workout: 800 m run? How far is 800 meters?

I pulled out Google and looked it up. And my heart sank: 800 meters is roughly half a mile.

Now, I’ve never been all that big into running. I have several family members who do the long distance running thing, and I have sat back in awe that anyone can do that, while secretly wishing that I could do it too. My second foray into a CrossFit gym had me walk out of the gym, completely worn out, after a half mile run. And that was just the warm up that day! I just don’t have the stamina and endurance to do it. Let’s face it – I’ve been sitting on the couch for seven years now. Stamina and endurance have a tendency to disappear when you do that.

Of course, there was more to the workout, and I considered dropping the running part and just doing the rest. 50 pull ups, 100 push ups, 150 squats. Oh, and then we were supposed to run another 800 m.

I debated dropping the running and doing the rest. I debated riding down the road to this gravel track nearby, doing the running, coming home to do the rest, and driving back out there to do the second run. I weighed it all. And then I stopped and got completely honest with myself. Do I really want to walk into a gym where they expect you to do these kind of runs every now and then, knowing full well that I simply can’t do it? One of the reasons why I walked out of the gym the last time was because I was so completely embarrassed by my performance. Do I want to put myself through that again? Is it worth it?

I weighed it all week, although not entirely seriously. I talked to the girl and told her that I planned on coming. I worked the cost into my budget. I stopped thinking about it. And then I talked to another friend of mine who I used to go to a different gym with. She told me how much I had inspired her to get busy in the gym. She’s been going all year. She hasn’t gotten hung up on what gym to go to and what workout to do. She has simply been going and getting it done.

I went to my old gym with her yesterday, and I have to say that I have missed it. I downloaded the “Couch to 5K” app on my phone so that I can work on my running, stamina, and endurance in a place where I won’t feel intimidated and embarrassed. I did my first workout with it yesterday, and it was really all that I needed. A structured running workout that I can restructure to my pace, because even that workout will get to be too much for me in about a week. And this morning I did some squats, and you know what? I realized that I don’t need a CrossFit gym to do this. I can tell that I am doing the squats right now. I am getting better at it. I have been working on my squats for an entire year on my own, and I am conquering them on my own. It took a while, but when I noticed that my center of gravity was different going down into the squat than it used to be and that I was getting lower into the squat than I used to, I was so proud of myself. Because I did that all by myself. Shoot, I’m getting choked up just writing about it, because that has been my goal for an entire year, and this morning I knew that I had reached it.

I told my friend yesterday that she ended up inspiring me just as much as I inspired her. I need to quit trying to make this so hard and just get out there and do what I can do. Every trip to the gym is a victory, and when a milestone is reached like the one I reached this morning, it is an even bigger victory. There are ways that I can identify goals that I want to reach, but I don’t need the name and the big, expensive gym to reach them. I just need patience and dedication. And I have shown myself that I really do have that. I told my fiancé yesterday about my friend saying how much I inspired her, and I asked him why it has been so hard for me to inspire myself. Well, now I see how that works, and I see the bigger picture.

Where is My Focus Directed?

I came to a very interesting realization during the past week: I am finally content with my body. I don’t feel like a bloated, overgrown, tomato-shaped, nasty, tired, worn-out individual any more. I am proud of the clothes that I can fit into and am happy that simply being doesn’t make me tired any more. Trust me, all of these feelings were ones that propelled me into the nightmare that was my dieting life. And eventually had me find my way to Paleo. I feel like I can do and be now.

This is a big thing, especially with all of the stress that I have encountered over the past month. But it also made me realize that I needed to reassess my goals. See, my primary goal when I started doing Paleo was weight loss. I have accomplished that goal to the point where I am satisfied. But I don’t feel fulfilled yet. I have things that I have always wanted to do that I am still not able to do, even with my amazing weight loss. I want to do kickboxing and MMA style fighting (yes, I have a secret desire to be Jason Bourne). I want to be able to do a hand stand like all of the CrossFitters that I am absolutely jealous of, especially since my CrossFitting wipeout back in February. I want to be able to do CrossFit regularly with a passion that exceeds even my understanding.

So I think that I need a change in focus. Weight loss is all well and good, but I’m not even weighing myself any more – it is hard to keep that focus now since I stopped doing that. But stopping the constant weighing was one of the best things that I have ever done for myself in this journey. It is definitely time for a different focus.

I guess with all of the fitness-related desires that I have, the next step would be to focus on fitness. There are so many contradictory stories about fitness and what fitness is, but luckily, I have a place to start. I have been singing praises of EP LifeFit since I joined, but I haven’t really done much with it. I think that spending time on the forum of the website has actually hurt me rather than helped. I am the type of person that doesn’t need five people giving me their personal opinions about everything that I have been trying to do. While it has bee helpful in some cases, it has also been a hindrance because I have posted something that has been working for me and when I do, I have five people coming around to tell me that I am doing it wrong. HELLO? One of the aspects that I have always liked about Paleo is the fact that everyone does it differently – they do it how it suits them and they do what works for them, and if it doesn’t work for you then don’t do it. So it really sucks to be posting about what I am doing and what has been working, only to be shut down and told that I am not supposed to be doing that.

Take coconut shakes, for example. I have LOVED my coconut shakes. Strawberry and almond butter was my favorite. I posted on the forum about my love of my coconut shakes and one of the girls posted that we aren’t supposed to be drinking coconut shakes because they can spike insulin levels and will make it harder to lose weight. So guess what…I stopped drinking the shakes, and I stopped posting on the forum. That was a buzz kill for me. And I miss my shakes. They were my sweet treat! I needed a sweet treat every now and then! Even my coworkers commented on my shakes because they know that I can’t have sugar – they said that I finally found something to calm my sweet tooth (not that I really have one any more). But I don’t have to give up my shakes! I am happy with how I have been doing things – I have found things that work! Why am I listening to someone who does not know my journey and does not have the same goals as me, even though they may be trying to help? I know what works for me and what my body needs, and I know where my focus is.

At least, now I know where my focus is.

I need to stay off the forum. It has become detrimental to my personal journey. I need to focus on that journey and focus on the beginner workouts that EP LifeFit has posted, because starting those workouts is what is going to help me get in the shape that I need to be in to be able to accomplish my fitness goals. And those goals are going to be the focus of the next leg of my Paleo journey, because the journey isn’t over. I have just made a new commitment to clean my diet back up after the move so that I will have the energy to tackle my new fitness goal. My energy levels have been in the tank for the past month, what with all of the stress and everything here lately. But by giving myself direction, I am hoping to alleviate some of that stress and be better able to focus on what I want to do with myself, as well as getting my energy levels back up.

I love this journey. And I love being able to come on here and rant and rave about it, and have my five loyal readers like what I have ranted and raved about. You guys inspire me to keep going and keep pushing, because I know that I am not alone. Thank you for your support!

The Holidays

Well, we are right smack in the middle of the holidays, and I bet you are thinking, “Gee, she hasn’t posted in a while.  I bet she fell off the wagon HARD!” Well, you would be wrong – I have made it through so far with my new-found lifestyle intact. It made for an interesting Thanksgiving, but I plan on trying some new recipes that I found to spice up Christmas a little bit. I am really enjoying the winter squash that is in season now, although I miss all of the summer vegetables tremendously. I’m not sure that I’ve eaten this many navel oranges….ever, but they sure are delicious.

Lately my weight loss has slowed, but I have had a busy few weeks. My oldest daughter got really, really sick and I had to take her to the hospital twice in one weekend. My other daughter has gotten sick twice. The end of the semester was crazy. Through it all I stayed on my Paleo diet, although I think that my meat to vegetable ratio has suffered. I think that I’m eating WAY too much meat now and not enough vegetables, but I haven’t gotten off the wagon by any means. I am trying to figure out how to tweak what I am doing so that I am back where I need to be. I ate a huge salad today and I hope to be able to do that every day. I found out today that my garlic-infused olive oil tastes really good with red wine vinegar. I have been craving some Garden Fresh Meatballs in the last twenty-four hours, so I will probably make some of those this weekend. I know that I’m still losing inches, but it has definitely slowed down. It isn’t a bad thing, but since I’m in the middle of a month-long break from school this is the perfect time for me to get things back going. I haven’t been to the gym since my daughter got sick, so I’m going to get started going back tomorrow night. I may try to sneak in some Power 90 workouts too. I’ve really started missing those workouts for some reason. I think that part of me knows that I can do much better at those workouts now, and wants to see just how much better I can do. But maybe sometime. Not now.

Well, this has been a very rambly post, and it is definitely time for me to end it here. I hope to check back in after the beginning of the year, if not sooner!

New Blog Site, New Goals

Just moved everything over here from blogger, so that I have everything in one place.

So the last post I did was in June? Well, I found out in AUGUST that I had contracted pneumonia shortly after that post. Needless to say, I quit doing the low-carb and the exercise because I was feeling so bad. I had lost about 15 pounds.

I’ve gained it all back, sad to say. But I did quit smoking around the same time that I found out that I had pneumonia. I’m ready to try exercising again. I’m doing the Power 90 program again, but this time I am modifying the schedule so that I don’t get burnt out again. I will continue to modify the schedule as I see fit until I get into good enough shape to do it how Mr. Horton intended it to be done. I am also back on the low carb. This time, I am going to allow myself to make mistakes. I actually did cheat yesterday, a little bit, but its okay. It will happen. I’m not perfect, and I’m not going to set myself up for failure by counting every carby substance that makes its way through my mouth a failure. At the same time, I am going to watch my carbs and my portion sizes. But I figure a sweet treat every now and then will probably be good for me, since that is the one thing that I crave the most, and the one thing that gets me every time. I don’t want to fail, because I have three very specific goals in mind.

The first one is, obviously, to lose weight. I am 100 pounds over my recommended weight right now, and that needs to change for SO many reasons. Anyone who has read any of this blog knows that my boyfriend is diabetic. I think my grandma died of diabetes too, but I’m not sure about that. So I think it runs in my family, and I know it runs in my boyfriend’s family. It is something that I worry about, and I have educated myself pretty well on it. The low carb diet will help in a myriad of ways when it comes to my health.

The next two goals are fitness based. I would like to be able to run a 5K marathon, and I would like to be able to enroll in and participate in a Krav Maga class. If anyone has seen a Krav Maga class, you know that it is extremely challenging and requires a lot of strength and endurance. I definitely have a long way to go before I can handle that class, but I want to get there, and I’m going to try hard.

So I started working out again on the 7th. I worked out on the 7th, 8th, and 9th. By the 10th, I was exhausted and had to take a day off. That is why I am modifying the schedule, because it is obvious to me that I can’t handle the schedule as it stands. But I am going to do what I can and get through it.

Stats as of today:

Weight:225, BF:72.9% , BMI:43.9