Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Detriment of the Youth Benefit

When I planned the long run on Sunday, my instincts told me that Monday would probably have to be a rest day. So yesterday I tried to find an online resource for at home exercise routines. I am reluctant to have a rest day where I just do nothing. I did find one at freetrainers.com but I wasn't exceptionally confident in it. So I ended up on the treadmill instead and it only took about five minutes to learn my lesson. Long days prefer to be followed by light days. I didn't let my error stop me though, luckily I have the ignorance of youth on my side. I pushed through my aching legs and upped my routine to 18 minutes running out of 30. I felt better than the last time I did 18. I know that today will have to be a rest day. Not sure what I will come up with for a cross-training activity, but I've got the rest of the day to figure it out.

I haven't mentioned much about my diet changes. Jeff of Formerly Fat Running Guy was curious so I figured I'd post something about that for the record. My three biggest problems in my diet were overeating, late night mass quantity sugar snacking, and a complete lack of vegetables. I was lucky I didn't have to fight the pop demon too as I am a water addict. I had been eating about a cup of oatmeal with 2 spoons of brown sugar and cinnamon for breakfast for well over a year so that was covered already. Lunches have always been either leftovers or a can of soup (steak and potato 360 cal. +-). I did have to stop eating from the break room chocolate box but this was easier than expected with my keeping 100 cal snack packs at my desk to kill the random urges. To conquer my big three, I did a number of things. First I started making steamed broccoli or cauliflower with all of our dinners. I make more than we eat so I can take it to work for some of my lunches. I also switched us off of tater tots and started making packaged hash brown patties. The hash brown patties aren't any healthier, but they are a lot easier to make less of. When I first started I was eating two with each dinner, but now I just eat one. I make pork now as well as chicken and beef, so that helps to have another meat to rotate in. Just this past week I actually bought fish instead of steak for our grilling we do every Saturday. For the late night snacking I bought green apples and grapes and for a month or so I ate those when I needed a late night snack. Slowly though that urge to eat late has curbed itself. I also have some 60 cal pudding snacks if I need something sweet, but it's taking me about three weeks to make it through a package. Basically I didn't want to jump into anything too shocking that I could rebel against. I just took (and am taking) baby steps toward less food or healthier food. Rather than cut off a certain food I just eat less the worse it is for me. That means that sometimes I am strong enough to turn down my mother-in-laws donuts and ice cream and sometimes I just have a small piece of birthday cake. I want to be able to make better decisions, because I think that will stick longer. It may not be the fastest way to lose weight, but I know it will work in the long run.


Jeff said...

Looks like you're on your way with the diet changes. I started out very similarly, but after a few weeks was very disappointed with the slow speed of loss. If you're okay with it, more power to you!

A couple of thoughts (you didn't ask for them, so feel free to ignore them):

-- Brown sugar is better than white sugar, but it's still sugar. You might want to try to wean yourself to one spoonful. You could also add some fruit to give it a healthier sweetness.

-- The calories for lunch are great, but watch out for the sodium -- those prepackaged foods are killers.

-- Throw a baked white or sweet potato in the oven instead of tater tots. They're easy to prepare and a hundred times (slight exaggeration) more healthy for you.

-- Be careful of boredom with eating the same stuff too regularly.

-- I love the ff pudding cups too. Throw a dollop of light cool whip on top and you're still under a hundred calories.

Keep up the good work!

Dan Seifring said...

Like Jeff said you didn't ask for advise so feel free to disregard.

What jumped out at me was the sodium as well. Just write down how much you are getting for a few days and you might be surprised, it adds up quickly.

I love the FF Pudding cups as well.

I have no problem with the boredom, I generally have the same breakfast and lunch M-F.

Again you are doing great keep it going.

Pat said...

Slow and steady wins the race. Your posts and the comments are very helpful. Thanks guys. The running is easier for me than the eating part.

Kim on the Biggest Loser said, "If your body is burning sugar, it isn't burning fat". I want to burn fat for sure.

I think anything you can do with your upper body will be a good cross training day. Go to the batting cages, racquetball, tennis, weight lifting. Just have fun and know that rest days are the days your muscles grow stronger.

Emil Von Asskick said...

I appreciate all the comments as well guys. The way I see it you are all blazing the trail for me.

That two spoons of sugar will be one of the next things that gets whacked. There are already some days when I'm feeling especially hardcore that I go with one, but it's not typical yet.

Sodium. First I'm not a salt guy, as in I don't even cook with it. My largest salt consumption items are the soup or franks red hot (I put the sauce on leftovers or I have the soup) and my snacks. At this point I'm not too worried, but if something comes along that is as reliable and more healthy for lunch I will switch off the soup as I've been on it for more than a year.

Baked potatoes are the next step in dinner. Tater tots are no longer invited in the house. My wife and kids will probably fight the switch from the patties, but it is only a matter of time.

It takes literally years for me to become bored with any food.

The pudding is darn good. My wife thinks I have officially flipped my lid. She doesn't think it tastes even remotely sweet.

Pat I really want an exercise bike for the rest days, but no one around here seems to want to get rid of one. I am woefully decrepit in the upper body so I need to find something enjoyable for that too.

Dan Seifring said...

Check Craigslist for a exercise bike.

For upper body just grab a few dumbells and start from there. Some core exercise would be a great start (curls, press, fly's....).

You would be shocked to see where salt shows up. I was getting frozen vegetables and could not beleive how much sodium was in them.

Bottom line you are doing great and just keep up the great work.

Emil Von Asskick said...

My sodium shocker was canned green beans. Absolutely ridiculous!