So, anyways, I'm trying my best to keep my body happy in the right ways so that everything else 'absorbs' appropriately. ;)
I will update you later about how my week went but I figured I would first post this video here on my blog. I should have posted it early because this was sort of the intro video to my blog on my youtube channel. It's sort of the beginning of everything and the moment of my decision to make this a lifestyle change and not just a temporary experiment. It's still a sort of experiment but it's definitely not temporary. I've gotten to a point where I have conditioned my body well enough to stick with a lot of my 'health-nut' foods, refuse fast-food- and junk-food-like items, and I've decided that exercising needs to be high up on my priorities list. Nothing else really matters if your not feeling good or treating your body well. You can do all the studying for school, earning money, and "apple-a-day" stuff but, until you make it a lifestyle choice - to kick out all those crap foods that the industry has brainwashed you into thinking are 'good enough' and decide to expel your energy in a productive way such as exercising - then you'll just be miserably crawling through a muddy life and sink-holes will bring you down for sure. Here's a good analogy - Its the same as how water affects you. If you are eating good food and taking vitamins, all that nutrients will not even be absorbed correctly if you're not drinking enough water! It's pointless without water! A human can survive longer with just water than they can with just food (Fact)! So how can you do life if your body isn't even up to par? Life isn't applicable if your body is not there. It just makes sense that your body's health comes before you can even begin to live life. It's like people who run smack into a health issue, they say that everything was going well until that moment and then their life just stopped, and they had to first focus on healing their body before being able to actually live their life again. Many of us might not even realize how poorly nourished our body really is because of all the industry's crappy food that we're subjecting ourselves to. You really have to start being more aware of the ingredients in things, what are you really putting into your body? Remember, we humans are amazing animals, our survival instincts and abilities are miraculous at times but we are also very fragile beings.
So, anyways, I'm trying my best to keep my body happy in the right ways so that everything else 'absorbs' appropriately. ;)
Hello internet people. So this is what I did yesterday (sunday):
My mom also found a new kind of food called quinoa (keen-wah) that has even more protein than tofu and is supposedly without the side affects that soy products can cause. And it's actually quite tasty! It's a great replacement for rice and other starchy items too, it's the seed of a plant and apparently isn't a starch.
I've been trying to resist the Goldfish crackers but my mom just made a batch of a sweet chex mix, it's heavenly and can find loopholes in your diet. It's not good. But I'm trying to control my portions when I do have any of the mix.
Some food I had over the weekend...
Last night, while eating my could-taste-better bean-and-tofu-on-wheat-bread burrito and watching my father enjoy a delicious traditional bean and cheese burrito with white bread, I realized something. Something that helped me change the way I look at food and also made me wonder why we even have the ability to find certain tastes pleasurable and other not so pleasurable. Why this torture? I say torture because when we grow up in a certain culture where our taste buds are conditioned to crave the taste of foods that are actually toxic to our body it's a little discouraging and frustrating when we realize we are killing ourselves and that healthy food (the stuff we should be eating if we want to live past year 50) might not always taste as epic as we think those BigMacs do. And for many, the junky toxic food can be quite addicting. It's like the effect that Morgan Spurlock experienced after only so many days of eating McDonnalds every day (Super Size Me). He said that, when it came to meal time, he would be craving that tasty MickyD's and he felt horrible when he wasn't eating it but as soon as he was chowin down on a death-patty he felt amazing. He was experiencing similar reactions to those of an addict.
I know that not every American eats fast food every single day, but that just gives you an idea of how one can really get used to, and possibly addicted to, anything that they inflict on their bodies. But what if we switched it around? Instead of pushing bad things on ourselves, doesn't it just make sense to push good stuff? What if we started eating healthy food, food that we know will definitely try its hardest to help keep us around for our grandchild's first birthday? Regardless of the taste would you do it? Think about this for a moment - every sensation we receive into our brain is nothing but an electrical signal. NOTHING but electricity. Just how they explain in the Matrix movies (video) and just how Echo explains in her vlog about how she deals with daily excruciating pain. Taste, touch, sound, sight, and all that, are simply the way that our brain interprets the signals that our body sends to it in reaction to stimuli in our environment. In one viewpoint, we can see this as a very direct and accurate way to interpret our environment, therefore we might completely believe everything our brain tells us (but if we should trust everything that our brain tells us then why would a heroin addict, who is on his death bed, go for another hit?). Or, in the other viewpoint, this signal actually takes a very complicated, intricate, and somewhat long road to the brain's concluding interpretation. I'd have to say, don't trust everything your brain tells you. We've got school to condition our brains for math, science, reading and such, but we've got the world to thank for conditioning our taste-buds for premature death and free self-preservation (mmm, tasty preservatives in my food, I'd die for 'em).
(Don't get me wrong, I know that taste can help us a lot. When we are trying to determine whether something is too salty or if something will be fatty enough to keep us alive if we're stuck on a desert island. But otherwise, in the world we live, there isn't very much reason to rely on our taste signals anymore. Until we retrain them, at least, which is what I'd love to try doing.)
I realized all this as I was eating my somewhat modified burrito (It really wasn't all that bad but I knew it could have tasted better) and I mentioned a shorter version of this theory about taste to my parents there at the dinner table and they agreed. Then, watching them continue to eat their greasy cheese and bean burritos with satisfaction, I knew we could probably all agree that there are many things that are easier said than done.
p.s. - cheese hates me anyways, so that helped me not feel so bad about the cheese missing from my burrito ;)
I was so tired last night after exercising that I only had the energy to type out the list I had kept from all the things I did and ate today. I realized that keeping a list while I did things really helped and I'm sure it can help the reader of the blog as well.
So the following is a list of the exercising I did last night:
After the crunches I had begun to start feeling really tired, not like out-of-breath tired, but as if someone drugged me and I was so lazy, my muscles didn't care to move very fast. I felt like I could have went to bed right then. But instead I went down to eat my burrito.
Following the food note, this is my list of food that I ate yesterday:
I believe I exercised on wednesday. Let me see. Tuesday was a "snow day" but I still had classes because my classes are at 8 and 9:30 in the morning and they didn't put up the cancelations banner on the site until 11am. So when I got back home I had lunch and then helped out with shoveling. I think. I can't remember what day I shoveled but I do know that I exercised two days ago (wednesday). So anyhow. The point is that I was hoping to do more exercising after shoveling but I think the shoveling, in itself, was exercise, at least for upper-body strengthening. So when I exercised on wednesday I did a good amount of stretching but I know I didn't do all of the upper-body strengthening exercises and I pretty much just went right to the bike. I rode for about 15 - 20 minutes I believe and I think that was the session where I pushed myself a bit. I was listening to Pandora again, this time to my Bachata/Merengue station and that was some fast paced music. I usually will try to keep up with the music that I'm listening to if it is moderately paced, but some of that merengue sure is fast. I actually tried to keep up with one of the songs and pushed myself pretty good there, I felt accomplished :) Then I went down to eat dinner.
On the food note, since I haven't said much about that lately, I have been doing well. I deviated a few pathetic times in the last week but otherwise I'm doing a lot better than my usual diet in the last few months. I've tried to keep myself in a certain mentality when eating lately. I've tried to make the majority of my meals vegetables and fruits. I have been eating about 2 - 3 pieces of fruit everyday and enjoying fruit juices here and there as well. I've also realized that I can fit some of my tofu into basically any meal if I want. Tofu is a great source of protein and of course it is from a vegetable at the same time. But yes, I have heard about the problems with soy products and I'm trying to make sure I don't over eat the soy products that we buy. It is apparently a bad idea for someone who has breast cancer in their family to eat soy products and my grandmother had breast cancer so I am definitely aware of the serious issue at hand here. I've definitely tried to back off the soy as much as I can. Me and my mom are looking into different healthy sources of protein.
Another thing related to exercise - My mom told me the other day that a friend had actually recommended P90X. She says they told her that P90X is a great thing. I had heard about it before and thought it looked really cool. I would love to try some of the exercises. I would actually love to try that 90 day program, haha, the one where you can get insanely ripped in just 90 days, but the program includes some intense, not so noob-friendly, exercises. And it requires some equipment that I might not have available and the bottom line is - the dvds are over 100 dollars. I'm sure it is totally worth it but I am very much an unemployed broke college student, so buying the dvds is definitely out of the question. But I'm going to do a little more homework on that and see if I can find some videos online of people doing the exercises.
Below I posted one video I just found on youtube about some guy's success story with P90X...
Like I said in the last post, I'm sorry these are so late, thanks for the patience (for whoever has possibly been following me at all). If I end up never getting time during the week to update right after I exercise then I might end up saving some notes as drafts and then posting their finished products at the end of the week. Which is what happened this week due to being back at college again...
On monday I exercised pretty thoroughly. I basically did everything that I mentioned in my "session 2" post. I did a lot of stretching (old school gym-class stretches). I did upper-body lifting exercises like lifting a weighted bag (like i said, ghetto methods goin on here) for biceps and also triceps. I've been doing somewhere around 4 rounds of 30 lifts for biceps and only about 2-3 rounds of 10-15 lifts for triceps. I have weird joints and so every time I try to lift for triceps (lifting my arm strait out from my side) my shoulders pop on the way back down. I don't know if its because I'm doing it wrong (I don't believe so) but it's really strange and icky feeling. I did crunches too, maybe about 30 in all. I tried a few different "crunch" methods, I did the traditional style, then I did the one where you lie flat on your back and go back and forth lifting each leg up at a time (at the hip joint keeping your leg strait) similar to what is seen in the water exercise in G.I. Jane. Then I did a crunch exercise where you, again, lie flat on your back and it looks like your climbing really steep steps, just bringing each leg up at a time (bending them at the knee). I've been hoping that doing crunches will help me with my attempt to get rid of my pot-belly-ness. Then, of course, I rode the bike, for only about ten minutes though cause I actually tired out my legs a lot already with all the stretching and exercises I did. Then I had to shower and eat quick because I have bible study on monday nights. But yeah, that's about it. See ya next time!
First of all - I'm sorry these are quite a bit later than when I would usually have these up. I started school this week and I've been slightly busy, enough to push off blogging till the end of the week. I really want to try blogging as soon as I can after exercising but it seems that I always end up exercising right before dinner time or before I have to go somewhere so I have to take a shower right away. And now that homework (and of course American Idol) are in the picture, I end up doing that after dinner and a shower instead of blogging. I did, however, write down very short notes and saved them as drafts so that I would not forget what I did and then I can elaborate later when I have time to post the entry. Which may end up being the situation from now on. I will most likely just keep notes throughout the week and then write the rest of the story at the end of the week and post it. Unless I can spare some time after each session then I will just have to publish everything at the end of the week. Anyways...
Saturday I woke up at 7am so that I would have a good two hours to try and become somewhat conscious before teaching people English. (Quick explanation:) I am a volunteer assistant teacher for ESOL at my church. As much as I hate going out in the cold, semi-early in the morning, to put my shyness on the back burner and teach a group of people one of the most complicated languages in the world (even still for most native speakers, including myself), I absolutely love it! The people are so nice and eager to learn and I even get to brush up on my English! ;p So anyhow, after ESOL I came home and vacuumed even more than I did the day before. Of all days for me to do mucho house work, saturday was not the best. I was so exhausted from lack of sleep that I was seeing stars here and there, but regardless of my major fatigue (of course I could have been in way worse shape) I actually got a lot done. After all this work, I stretched just a little and then got on the bike for only about 10 minutes. I was, of course, very tired already but I guess I built up enough momentum to feel like I could survive through a little bit of bicycling. That's all I can say for that day. I'll update my other drafts and post them right after this one. Thanks for keepin up with me even when I haven't been able to completely keep up with you! *Peace*
Well, I figured I shouldn't leave ya for too long without telling you whether or not I was able to get out of my bed yesterday ;p So I'm just making a sort of unofficial exercise post because I did some physical activity today but I don't think it counts. I vacuumed some of the house today but it wasn't really any rigorous or 'muscle-building' activity I guess. But at least I was active and I guess it was a little bit of an endurance exercise. I listened to my old 5th generation video iPod and a little bit of Pandora to help me 'get rhythm' while I did what many would consider boring and tedious work. But, of course, vacuuming is very necessary to keeping life healthy. Mother knew I decided not to go into work with her to volunteer at the school so she left me with a nice little list of chores to help her out at home instead. Although I wasn't "exercising" today I still got up off my butt and I do feel accomplished.
On the music note (haha that was not intended) I've been thinking of starting another simple little blog where I talk about music. Music that I've loved for years, music that I've loved for only seconds, and even music that I don't love or that I'd love it if it don't exist. But mostly I'd try to keep it positive of course ;) So we'll see how that goes, soon as I start school again (this Tuesday) I'm afraid of losing some free time, like the time that I've begun to commit to my health and this blogging. But I might as well at least start up the music blog and see how it goes from there. I am, of course, not any kind of professional or music major or nothin, but I love music and I'd love to share my love of music with the world (whoever chooses to listen).
Back again in the same night, like how I said it might happen. I was late with my last post but I just exercised this evening so I'm posting another update for this evening's events. I will try to make a post for every time that I exercise or have some interesting food info to mention. I might actually number the titles only for each time I exercise though, just to sort of keep track of how much actual physical work I've done to improve myself. And then all the food is understood and I will talk about it as I go along.
Let me continue on the food note since it's on the tip of my mind right now. So, like I said before, I had that delicious POM shake, but I also had a couple small pancakes with that for "brunch" (since I got up late again). It was a nice breakfast. Then I got hungry again around 2pm, so I made an interesting little snack. I was craving almonds and honey again, so I tried to figure out what I could use to hold them in order for me to eat them in a minimally-messy way. I wanted to avoid more starch but I couldn't help it. So I figured I would use a bagel, only half. So I toasted half a bagel and I also decided to spread some Tofutti cream cheese on it to help hold the toppings on better and to give me a bit more protein (And let me just sat the Tofutti products, especially the ice cream, are very tasty). Then I drizzled some honey and then sprinkled on the raw almond slices. It was very yummy! I wish I had taken a picture but I was too hungry and it was too delicious for me to stop eating it.
So anyway, after a while, I wrote the previous post you saw, and then I got ready to go outside to help my dad shovel snow. But then I was hungry, yet again, and I knew that if I didn't do something about it at that very moment then the hunger would only get worse as I shovel. So I inhaled a banana, drank a bunch of water, and a little bit of blueberry juice to mask the banana flavor (yeah, I really don't like bananas, but they are quick so I still eat them), and then I was off to the winter wonderland.
This is where the exercise first came in today. There was plenty of upper-body exercise with all that shoveling, at least, for a little newb weakling like me. There was a lot of lifting with the arms and twisting with the abdomen. It was good. When we had finished for the night I went back in and rode the bike for about ten minutes. I was already tired and I was starting to get really hungry again, so I didn't want to get myself dizzy.
Food again! For dinner we had some yummy burritos that had pinto beans, lettuce, red peppers, salsa, and I'm pretty sure mom put pineapple in them too (I'm not a huge fan of pineapple either, but then I just figure that I'm a picky eater so I just need to suck it up anyhow). These ingredients were all nicely packaged in some wheat tortillas. Usually, when we make burritos at home we just put refried beans and cheese in them, so it was nice to put a different variety of stuff together this time. I personally don't really like a lot of mexican food, unfortunately, but these burritos we had tonight were not too bad, especially with some sliced avocado on top. But I think I ate too much. I had two stuffed but average size burritos with some cooked broccoli on the side but I guess it was too much all at once. I had a major food baby. I didn't feel the need to really eat anything again until now, right before bedtime, which I know is bad, but I hate going to bed feeling hungry.
Well anyways, that's all the rest of the day for ya. I might exercise tomorrow again, we'll see. I guess it depends on whether I can get out of bed at all. I'm expecting to feel somewhat stiff tomorrow since I had a nice evening of fresh air and snow-shoveling. But I'm sure that the call of my precious food will most definitely get me out of bed if nothing else...
I'm a little late with this update, I exercised two days ago and never said a thing till now. But here I am...
So I watched "Contact" the other night and I remember one of the quotes from that movie where the dad tells his daughter to take "small moves" because she wants to have everything all at once. But the reality is that most things in life take patience and small moves - baby steps. No matter how much you want something, sometimes it will just take a lot of hard work and dedication. Patience. That's what I've also learned with my ear stretching. I love the way bigger lobes look, but I can't have big lobes in one day of stretching, not even in one year. Besides, its the whole process and journey that makes it fun and is the essence of the event in itself. The only problem I have, though, with the whole exercising thing is that sometimes I might be too patient. I'm trying to take it easy and not over work myself when I do exercise and I do it every other day. But in between the exercising sessions I'm always afraid, and extremely tempted, to get lazy. But then I try to remember what I mentioned in the last post - whenever I think of eating something that might not be all that healthy I remember that there are people out there who are starving or that are housebound and so immobilized that they cannot even enjoy life's simple pleasures of those which also include exercising and healthy eating. I need to prove to myself, and anyone else I can witness to, that I shouldn't have to be stuck in that unfortunate situation in order to realize what simple pleasures I would be missing. I need to not be lazy when I actually have the power to do something about it.
Here's a picture of the back porch, this morning around 11am. See the little birds out on the lawn? They're chillin (literally) under the bird feeder.
On the side - I just took a loot out my living room windows here and it is still snowing. Today was a "snow day", a pretty worthy one, too. I think we got somewhere around 17 - 18 inches by now (4pm) here in NH. But anyways, it has been really pretty to watch all day, and to see the little birds doing their best to get around in the snow without snowshoes. Ice-picking their way to the quickly disappearing fallen seeds.
Anyhow, back to the exercise and food part of this..
Two days ago, I exercised (a little bit late in the day, though), I did everything I mentioned in the last post minus crunches and plus a type of triceps exercise. I think it was. What I did was I used the weighted bag that I use for the usual biceps lifting exercise and I held it in my hands, with my arms starting at my sides palms facing my body. Then I lifted the bag up, arms in abduction until they reached a right angle to my body, palms facing the floor. Ya get what I mean? So yeah, I tried doing that for a little while. Then, of course, I rode the bike for about 18 minutes.
My dinner consisted of rice noodles stir-fried in sesame oil and a little soy sauce with tempeh, some veggies, and heart of palm. It was simply delectable. For "dessert" I had apple slices, pomegranate and blueberry juice, and some crackers with raw almond butter. I feel like I get hungry easier these days, since maybe a couple years now. I don't know why, I'm sure its normal. But it's kind of good I guess, it makes me eat more small portions throughout the day, which is apparently one of the reasons why Europeans are so skinny ;D
The next day, I kind of got up late again. I seem to be getting p around 11am these days (at least in time to see Kathy Lee and Hoda). It's better than I've been doing during the vacation though. So when I got up I decided to try out a breakfast recipe that I saw on the POM website. It looked absolutely delicious, and I found that it tasted just as ridiculously good as it sounded. Here is the recipe, I highly recommend it (it says you can put your protein stuff in too, that thats a pretty tasty protein shake if ya want!) - http://www.pomwonderful.com/recipes/pom-morning-shake-2/ Such a tasty shake that I had to make it again today, and I shared it with my mom who thought it was pretty good too. Well, I think she made an understatement, cause I think this shake is heavenly.
Well, that's about it for now, I got to go out and help clear the snow with Dad. I'll probably exercise a little bit afterwards and hopefully update y'all later (if there is enough to talk about).
These are the notes from your average couch-potato that is simply trying to fix it before it breaks!