Archive for the ‘Diet’ Category

I didn’t get much running done in the beginning of the week.  On Saturday, April 21 I worked a wedding that took me the whole day.  I was very tired on Sunday  the 22nd but had to work again in the office because I was preparing to leave for three days to Albuquerque to see the Tom Petty Concert.  William and I left very early Monday morning to Albuquerque by plane and we were there until Wednesday.  It was a lot of fun but very hot and dry!  Not a place where I would want to live.  We ate any meal that had green chiles and drank a lot of alcohol. This is what you have to do when you are on vacation!  We also shopped and explored the city.  The Tom Petty Concert was wonderful and very worth it!

So Thursday was back to work. It was my catch up day and tried to get out as soon as possible because I wanted to get home to go grocery shopping. My plan is to get back on my healthy diet. William and I haven’t been doing as good as we should for the last month on our eating habits. I can feel it in my tummy and I don’t  want it to get worse.  So after work I went to Costco and Ralphs and stocked up on lots of greens and protein meats.  It was so noticeable that the cashier even commented “very healthy stuff.”  It was all green vegetables, greek yogurt, and fruit.  Hah!

I was also able to squeeze in a quick run on Thursday.  William and I did “The Loop” which is a circle going up some streets towards El Paso Drive, Avenue 50, and back on Lincoln to my house. It was 1.5 miles and made me very tired.  I felt behind again but knew that it was up to me to change this!

Friday I worked and went out with friends so no time for a run.  Saturday was another catch up day and began to cook my recipes.  I started the morning with a green shake: yogurt, mint, 1 cucumber, kale, 6 celery sticks, pineapple, ginger, cardamom, agave nectar, 1 scoop of protein, 1 spoon of natural fiber, and 1 green apple. I used the juicer for most of the greens and then combined everything in a blender.  It was the perfect way to start my day.

For lunch, I had a Which Wich Sandwich in Burbank because William and I were doing some shopping in that area. We came back home and I went back to my recipes. We then decided to do another “Loop” for a run but extended it by a street so it was 2 miles.  The new extension was an uphill street and it nearly killed me!  We did the loop twice! Hooray for 4 miles on Saturday!

For dinner I am making a kale salad with pine nuts, radish, marinated in olive oil and lemon juice.  It will be topped with quinoa mixed with dried cranberries, parsley, chopped carrots, mint, and some other spices and oils.  I will finish it off with marinated honey-grilled chicken.

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I was doing well on my detox diet, even when I was sick. It wasn’t until last weekend when I started to crave so many things that were not approved on my detox diet. I began to feel bored on the food I was eating and also running out of it.  Doing this diet can be expensive and I was going through so much food.  I didn’t want to stop early but it was just getting too difficult to buy the groceries and the cravings wouldn’t go away!  The reason why I wanted to stick to the 21 days (besides the fact that you are supposed to do it for 21 days according to the book) is because I wanted to prove to myself that I could discipline myself into doing something. I felt that I gave in to this diet, that I probably wouldn’t last with my training either. It was all in my head and I wanted to prove to myself that I was strong enough to succeed in something so difficult.  Will had send me a quote:  “It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than anything else, will affect its successful outcome.”  By William James.  I needed to stay positive and focused!

So last weekend I went to my brother’s house to hang out and nothing in his refrigerator was approved to eat. I was hungry and weak so I gave in and ate some chips and a hamburger he made me.  NOOOO!!!!!!!  I felt awful but it was so delicious.  I gave myself a hard time about eating the food but I started thinking:  I’m only human!  I don’t want to make excuses for myself but I did learn something from this. Just because I ate the hamburger, it does not mean I will not finish my training. It’s not like I was going to start eating this kind of stuff daily.  I still wanted to continue running and training which I have been doing. I was just so scared that I was going to stop everything just because I made a wrong turn.  I guess my lesson learned is that no matter what, it’s going to be up to me to make this happened and it’s ok to make mistakes along the way.

So basically my detox diet ended after two weeks. It does not mean that I have stopped eating healthy. I actually cooked a 10 lbs turkey on Sunday and I have been making different meals with it throughout the week. I made a turkey salad with sage, veganaise, lemon juice, zucchini, and cayenne pepper. Will and I ate it in brown rice tortillas (gluten and wheat free).  I also made another turkey salad with veganaise, parsley, jalapeño pepper, lemon juice, black olives, green onions, and cayenne pepper. This one was more spicy and delicious. I have also been sticking with my fruit shakes that are high on fiber.

Will and I ran this week toward Runyon canyon. I noticed that when I run with him, I don’t stop to have as many breaks as when I run by myself. I remember the first time I ran towards Runyon Canyon, I made many stops before reaching Melrose. This time with Will, I didn’t stop once until we reached Melrose.  He was always in front of me about 10 yards away so I was always trying to catch up to him.  It worked whatever he was trying to do with me.  We have also been doing our P90x workouts. I did Plyometrics and Yoga.

Last night I got out of work late and we were looking for a place to eat.  We were looking for a place where we were able to watch the Clippers play and eat. I wanted to ensure that the food was somewhat healthy.  There is a restaurant we always pass by on the way to my house called Home Restaurant. It’s on Riverside Drive and Fletcher. We decided to go into the parking and asked the Valet if they had a TV to watch the game. They replied yes so we decided to try it. The nice hostess greeted us and sat us at the bar. When she sat us down she said “Welcome Home.” It was really cute. The menu had a lot of variety and there was a salad that caught my eye, the Healthy Multi-Grain Salad.  It basically had a lot of ingredients that I was able to eat such as garbanzos, lentils, red beans, barley, black rice, celery, cucumber, carrots, red onions, tomato, and feta cheese. That was my selection and Will ordered a chicken pomodoro sandwich. They were both very delicious but I especially liked the salad because it was healthy and good!  I’m glad we found this place because now we have options besides me cooking. It’s difficult to find places that offer healthy items.   I’m glad we found this place.

So today I will be working about 14 hours for an event. That will be my workout. Walking all over the event making sure that it runs smoothly.  I will continue my running tomorrow.

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Today is the seventh day of training and things are going well for the most part. I’m sore, eager, excited, and ready for more.
Monday I had off for the holiday so I continued to make some more meals from the Clean book and took it easy that day. I wanted to makes sure I had enough food made for the week while I was at work. I made some new recipes I had not tried out before. I made a tilapia with lemon, thyme, black olives, and zucchini in parchment paper and baked in the oven. The Clean book also described an easy recipe for vegetables. Basically buy any green favorite vegetables, steam them, and add a tablespoon of coconut oil right after steaming them. So I steamed some broccoli, brussel sprouts, green beans, and spinach. I also cooked some quinoa and combined them together with the coconut oil.

Quinoa with Steamed Vegetables and Coconut Oil

It went great with the tilapia! It was a great and healthy dinner to have.

Tuesday I did Plyometrics from the P90x program after work. According to Wikipedia, plyometrics is designed to produce fast, powerful movements, and improve the functions of the nervous system, generally for the purpose of improving performance in sports.  Plyometrics in the P90x is basically an hour of explosive jumping exercises. It’s also a great cardio workout. It’s also one of the hardest workouts of P90x. It gets you tired quick! But I focused on exercising the moves correctly and took my time. I felt great after I finished.
Wednesday I was sore and knew I was heading on the right direction. I went for a morning run around my house. I went towards the same loop I had done with William on Sunday but went to another bigger hill and it killed me! Running in the morning is very different. It was cold, my muscles were still not as warm so they felt tight, and I was hungry. I didn’t want to eat before the run so I only drank some water. I also didn’t have William running with me so I didn’t have anybody pushing me to not stop running. It was hard! I stopped a lot! Going up the hill made me wonder what the heck I was doing. I felt so far behind from the marathon because I was out of breath and tired. William’s voice was inside my head telling me “you can do it, run another block before you stop to rest,” so I tried to maintain that. I made it farther than what William and I had done but it wasn’t easy. I knew I had a long way to go.
Thursday I did Yoga with William after work. I’ve been looking forward to this because Yoga only does the body good. It was my favorite workout when I was doing P90x over the summer so I was glad to get back on it. You see, Yoga is more than just stretching your body. Its building balance and strength. Two components I need for my body to run better. There were some difficult poses but I got through. I felt so much better afterwards. My body felt loose and rested.
Friday I woke up sore again. I went to work early and had a long busy daly. I was there from about 8:30am to 7:15pm. I was tired after work but knew I had to get another run before my day ended. So I started the weekday goal run that William made for me which was to get to Runyon Canyon from his apartment. I ran and walked but mostly tried to run the whole time. There were times that I felt tired and other times I had spurts of energy and ran at a good pace. I made it all the way to Melrose Avenue and Martel, which was exactly two miles. I then ran and walked when I had to back to the aparment. It took me 1 hour for a total of four miles. This is going to change soon. Pretty soon I’ll be blogging that I did 8 miles in one hour! I’m going to get there damnit! I didn’t have Coach William for most of the week because his friend is visiting from Japan. They’ve been keeping each other entertained with other activities. It’s made me appreciate how nice to have a running partner. He’s good at keeping me at a good pace since he’s so advanced at this. He’ll be back next week ready for action.
The diet part has been fun but also time consuming. It was challenging this week to make sure I had food to take to work. Since I’m cooking for William too, we go through more food because we’re hungry all the time. So it’s good to have snacks such as baggies of mixed raw nuts, roasted garbanzos, fruits, and quinoa salad. But our main meals I had to make sure that we were not falling off the detox diet. Sometimes I was cooking at 9pm because it was the only time I had. This is what happens when you really want something. You make sacrifices because nothing in life comes easy. It’s showed me that I can be determined and complete something. I only have 14 more days of this detox clean diet. In the beginning of the week I almost forgot I was on it. Since I work at a restaurant, there’s always food at every corner! The first day back to work I almost went to the bar to get a coke to go with my meal because it was a habit I had in December. I paused and told myself “Wait a minute, I can’t have a coke anymore.” So I took some water instead. But that happened many times. The co-worker meals had chilaquiles one day, which is basically tortillas, salsa and CHEESE, my favorite ingredient in the whole wide world! I can’t have any dairy while I’m doing the clean diet.
The biggest challenge of all was doing a tasting with a client. I’m not sure if I mentioned this but I’m a Catering Manager. Part of my job is to do food tastings with clients to plan their menus for their events. Normally I sit and enjoy the tasting with them so I can see how consistent the food is that the Chef makes and so the clients don’t feel weird that I’m not eating. This time, I knew I couldn’t do that because the items on the tasting had ingredients that I couldn’t have such as dairy, shellfish, and wheat. What I did do was that I made sure I had my Clean meal about an hour before the clients got there so I was not hungry while doing the tasting with them. It worked but I was so tempted because I still have to see and smell the food! I love Chef’s food so it was very difficult for me to resist the mini burger sliders, the goat cheese purses with caramelized onions, the coconut shrimp with red curry sauce, the chipotle lobster and avocado bruschetta…need I say more? So I guess what this part will teach me is discipline. After the 21 days of detox are over, my world of food will be back but I will hopefully learn how to balance what I eat so I do not go back to the old eating habits. I will balance my cheese portions wisely and not go back to certain things such as soda. Soda is simply not good for you. So I shouldn’t ever go back to that. Cheese is good but obviously when the portion is not too much. This will help me in the long run as I continue my training for the marathon.
Next run will be tomorrow…stay tuned.

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I started my diet and training yesterday, January 1, 2012. The first thing I did was weighed myself. I’m going to do a monthly analysis after each month to see the progress I’ve made. I’m going to be looking on how my weight and body changes. My goal is not to get to a certain weight. Ideally I would like to be at 150 lbs or so. However I know that once I start weight lifting, my muscle weight is going to increase. I’m also going to be looking on how far I can run after each month I finish.
So my physical facts: I’m 5 feet and 10.5 inches. My waist (measured my belly) is at 38.5 inches. My weight is at a whooping 178 pounds! Yikes! I’ve never been this heavy! My ideal weight (according to internet charts) should be in the 150s. I know this weight had a lot to do on how I ate the last quarter of the year. It’s also the busiest quarter of my job. This means I typically work anywhere from 10 to 12 hours in a day, sometimes 14 hours if I’m working a large event. On weeks like these, I’m tired and I don’t have time to cook. I eat what I can grab which usually consists food with bread, butter, and beef. The three forbidden Bs. When I had time to eat out, William and I were not picking the healthiest choices. We were eating pastas, hamburgers, pastrami sandwiches, Mexican food, chips, etc.
The advantage of me being tall is that I can hide it for a while. When I increase my weight, the fat equally is staggered to my butt, stomach, the boobies, and the chin. It all does not go to one place. I feel it the most on my clothes. It’s hard to fit into anything right now. I can’t wear any of my button shirts, I have to wear my “big” pants to avoid the muffin top look, and I can’t look down without making two chins.
I was disappointed in myself because I was in a healthier condition over the summer when I did the Clean diet and I was physically active with different things. I remember I was walking a lot, I had done the Orange County 5k, I hiked the Sleeping Bear Dunes in Michigan, I was biking, and cooking healthy.  Now I’m on the other side of the fence and it sucks.
After I weighed myself I went to buy some groceries and started cooking. When I follow the Clean diet, I take a lot of time in the kitchen. To be healthy, I have to make everything from scratch. I do not mind it at all because I love to cook. So what I try to do is to cook a lot of meals in 1-2 days so I have food for the week and that way I do not fall behind on my diet. I started with this holiday clean recipe that Alejandro Junger (the author of Clean) posted on his facebook page. It was a chicken meal that consisted of thyme, garlic, mushrooms, leeks, and balsamic vinegar. I made some wild rice with almonds to go with the meal. It was so delicious! I also made some quinoa salad to snack on between meals. The quinoa salad has currants, raw almonds, parsley, mint, green onions, olive oil, lime juice, and ground cumin. It’s a perfect snack and quinoa is high on protein. I also made some zucchini soup to have as a meal.
After I finished my meals I went with William for our first official run of the year. William made goals to accomplish for us. Our weekday goal runs will be to run to Runyon Canyon, all the way to the top from his apartment. It’s 5 miles away from his apartment and a lot of hills! We also have to run back to his house. So that’s about 10 miles total for the weekday goal. Our weekend goal run will be to run from his apartment to Santa Monica Beach, which is 9 miles away from his apartment. We then run another 4 miles in the sand to Marina del Rey, and then run back to his apartment. This is what I have to accomplish in 8 months! So we started our first run and ran a loop around my house. The residential area around my house has a lot of hills. It was really difficult for me. I was out of breath for a while and my legs started to hurt. My leg bones felt so week! I had to stop at the midpoint (1 mile) and stretch my legs out. Afterwards, a while later I decided to sprint for a while. I had a boost of energy out of nowhere. My leg pains continued but we made it home. I ran about two miles. It was painful and embarrassing that I cannot run two miles. Two little miles out of the 26 I have to run in September!
First day of diet and training finished.

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People that know me think I’m crazy to commit to this. I’ve already heard my first “you’re not going to do it” statement. I totally understand those comments.  It’s a big goal to achieve when I’ve never been a runner.  I’m nervous and scared and yet very excited!  In order to take myself seriously about this, I’m going to have to be very determined and be like Nike and JUST DO IT!! 

This week I’ve made some accomplishments. As previously stated, William and I bought running shoes for Christmas. I also requested the time off from work so I do not have to worry about any job commitments.  And yesterday I registered William and I for the marathon!  I’m registered!  My heart was pounding when I purchased the registration. Maui?  Really?  Yes I agree with people, I’m crazy.  I also started to save money for the flight and hotel.  It’s going to be expensive but very worth it!

Now I’m getting ready for my diet. In order to have the most energy for my training, I need to be eating healthy again.  This week I’ve been eliminating (that means eating) any food that I shouldn’t be eating while in training starting January 1st.  I’m going to start off the New Year by cleaning my system by detoxifying.  I’m going to do the Clean diet for 21 days.  This means that I am removing certain foods such as red meat, pork, rash fish, shellfish, wheat, certain fruits and vegetables sugar, processed food, dairy and eggs, gluten, and alcohol.  My diet will consist of a lot of raw food, low acid fruits and vegetables, nuts, wild rice, quinoa, almond and coconut milk, and a lot of pure filtered water. I recommend for all of you to read the Clean book. You can easily buy the book at Amazon at a good price. You will learn a lot in this book. I can’t wait to start the diet. I’ve probably grown a few inches during the holiday. My clothes feel very tight on me. So next step is to go grocery shopping this weekend and make some food for the week.  I can’t wait!

My training will also consists of other exercises besides running. I’m going to work in the P90x routines to maximize my strength.  I also know that once I start running a lot, I will lose a lot of weight and I want to keep my shape.  P90x will help me have a toned body so I don’t lose my Latin curves ;). 

Goodbye cheese and hello nut milk!

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The biggest challenge to ever keep fit and healthy has been my passion to eat.  I love to eat and cook!  I also work in a restaurant where I’m a Catering Manager. I’m around food all day!  I like to try new flavors, new spices, new smells.  Eating is like an adventure for me.  Not only do I love to eat, but I love to cook.  Cooking is therapeutic for me. I feel better once I go home after work and start cooking a meal. Once I start smelling the spices in the kitchen and hear the sauce boiling in the pan, I feel better.

The consequences of consistent savory meals are the extra inches that your waist gains. I can easily be a size 6 and jump to a size 10 in a few months.  This is why I’ve always wanted to try to maintain a healthy balance between diet and exercise to maintain a good weight for my body.  For me it’s very important to be healthy.  Cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes all run in my family. I want to avoid having those problems as I become older.

I’ve never been a good runner.  This year was the first time I ever tried to run more than what I had to. It all started last year in 2010 when I saw my former roommate working out to P90x.  I liked the idea of a different workout each day. I wanted to be fit but I hated going to the gym and videos where you did the same workout each day. I invested in buying my own P90x workout and dedicated an hour each day to working out. I was hooked on it. I liked that I was working out each day and had time to do it in my own home! I probably did about 2 months worth of P90x in early 2010. I then met my awesome boyfriend William during the summer and introduced him to P90x.  We worked out together and loved the way we felt!  It was a great fitness program to try out.  William had previously run his first marathon early that year in March.  Once I heard his journey on how he trained, the actual marathon, and the after effects, I knew that I wanted to try that out some day.  I just didn’t know when it was a good time to start training.

This year William and I tried a new fitness project. We did the Clean diet by Alejandro Junger. It’s a 21 day detox program that helps you clean your body out of any toxics.  It’s basically two liquid meals and one solid meal per day.  I lost about 7 pounds in two weeks!  I learned a lot reading this book and still try to implement the meals in my daily meals.

I easily lose sight of my healthy meals and exercise when I become too busy at work.  The restaurant and hospitality life can be very demanding at times. Networking is also a big part of my job.  At the end of the day, sometimes I only have time to rest my feet and catch a Netflix movie.

So what will make me take the next step and conquer a marathon?  A lot of motivation!  William does inspire me a lot.  He ran the LA Marathon again this year in the pouring rain.  I followed him around the route until he finished.  I grew a deep appreciation of all these runners I saw. I felt if they can do it, so can I.  But still I did not start my training.  William also did the half marathon in Detroit Michigan and Malibu California. I did a 5k with him in Orange County earlier this summer and a Gladiator Run. These were 3 mile challenges for me.  I knew I had it in me to do more but still did not start my training for the big one.

Now it’s December and I’ve gained weight with all the holiday treats and offsite meals I eat on the go because I have no time to cook healthy.  It wasn’t until I worked an offsite on December 19th that changed everything.  My job catered to a lovely couple that has been loyal guests to the restaurant where I work for a long time.  The couple showed us around their house and this is where I saw the wife’s marathon medals. The woman told me that she ran her first marathon at age 69!  She has also ran two half marathons after that. I was so impressed.  I listened to her story on how she trained with her daughter.  She was told that she couldn’t finish the marathon because of her age.  That made her commit to the marathon. She trained and finished them!  This was the sign I needed.  I went home and told William that I wanted to start training in January.  He explained that it was too late to start training for the LA Marathon in March. I need more time, especially because I have not done any kind of exercise since early July.  He told me about the Maui Hawaii Marathon in September of 2012.  We made the decision to both train for that one. The commitment started this week when I bought William and I running shoes for Christmas.

Maui here I come!

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