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Getting Back on the Horse

June 14, 2011

L.A. has the stereotype of being a really healthy city.

  • We have tons of things to do outdoors (hike much?).
  • We have more health food/vegan/you name it restaurants than any other city (except maybe New York?).
  • And everyone thinks we’re obsessed with our looks (not TOTALLY true 🙂 ).

But here are a couple factors that people forget.

  • Just like everyone else, we have super-stressful jobs. Except for those of us in the entertainment industry, it also comes with a sometimes 60+ hour/7 day workweek.
  • Just like everyone else, we’re faced with all kinds of tempting treats. Except here there’s a cupcake shop/fro-yo/ice cream shop on almost every corner.
  • Just like everyone else, we can get tired of always making the “best” food choices. And there are more than enough restaurants (and food trucks!) to turn to.
And after my promotion in February, that’s exactly what happened to me.

I started working more, coming home more tired than before, and feeling less like cooking.

I dealt with stress by snacking. Often.

So I gained back some of my weight. Not all of it, but enough that bothered me.

I didn’t feel as confident in my clothes, I wasn’t dealing with stress the right way, and I was slipping back into old, bad habits.

So starting last week (delayed a week due to quite the nasty post-travel cold last week), I turned a new leaf. I’ve been making better food choices, bringing my lunch more often (but with a considerable amount less prep time required), and curbing my sweet tooth BIG TIME.

I won’t say where I’m at weightwise or where I want to be (I think everyone’s “fighting weight” is different, and you have to pick the weight that healthiest and best fit for your body), but so far, I’m on a really good track to get there.

The principles I’m sticking with are:

  1. Work out in the morning. Unless I’m training with Erika, who I can only meet in the evening, I head to the gym in the AM. That way, when I’m out of work, I’m done for the day. The gym being nowhere near as crowded is a plus, too. It’s not easy to get in the habit of AM workouts, but you get into the swing of things quickly (starting out with light workouts and building up is a good idea).
  2. Being realistic about my spare time. If I’ve been working all day and come home mentally spent, I’m probably not going to cook 3 meals for the next day. So I make simpler breakfasts, lunches, and dinners that still taste delicious. (scroll down for a day’s worth of examples)
  3. I stop and think about sweets. I don’t have a sweet tooth. I have sweet TEETH. It’s probably my biggest issue when it comes to food. So now I think twice. Should I grab a handful of MM’s? Nope, I had that mini-cupcake earlier. The MM’s will be there another day. Should I step out of the office for frozen yogurt? Not when a passion fruit ice tea from Starbucks will cure my get-away-from-my-desk blues.
  4. I consciously stick to healthier food choices. We ordered out for lunch today, and I was given a 6 page menu to pick from. Pizza. Pasta. Salads. Sandwiches. I ended up with a rosemary chicken sandwich with grilled veggies on wheat. It was delicious, filling, and, most importantly, I didn’t feel stuffed and sluggish after (I had lots of work to do!).
  5. I remember why I’m doing this. It’s not just to look and feel good in a bikini (though I won’t deny it’s an added bonus). It’s because I want to live a long, healthy, and active life. I don’t want to feel tired. I don’t want to get sick (aside from the occasional and inevitable cold… like last week). And, most importantly, I don’t ever want to be the cause of not being able to accomplish everything I want out of life.

I haven’t changed my workouts much– I’ve always been pretty good about them– but I have been making more conscious food choices…

… like a berry wafflewich made with whole grain blueberry waffles, a light spread of Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter (>1 tablespoon), some plain yogurt, and lots of blueberries.

 

 

 

Lunch was a toasted gouda-and-fig-jam sandwich on a Sandwich Thin with a side spinach salad (with Trader Joe’s Champagne Pear Vinaigrette) and some grapes.

I made the sandwich, open-faced, in my office’s toaster oven.

For dinner I had a lentil concoction I adapted from here, using whatever produce I could find in my fridge:

Lentils Marsala

adapted from here

makes 2 servings

  • 1/2 c red lentils
  • 1 c water
  • 1/4 c marsala wine (honestly.. use whatever wine’s lying around)
  • 1 1/2 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 T olive oil
  • 1/4 red onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1/2 c frozen, chopped spinach
  • 1/2 tsp sage
  • salt + pepper
Put it all in a saucepan, bring it to a boil, then reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for about 30 minutes. Stir occasionally. That’s it!
From now on, I’ll be posting more meals that are both easy to prepare the night before (or in your office!) and don’t break the caloric bank. I’ll also be posting more workouts, since I haven’t posted any in a while.

So here’s a question for you guys: What are a few weight-loss tips that work for you?

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