Monday, August 26, 2013

Week 35 Progress

Well, summer is winding down, the kids are getting back to school (including myself) and I'm monitoring my mom in her journey to lower her cholesterol levels.  If you haven't checked in for awhile, scroll back down over the past 3 weeks to read my moms guest posts about her high cholesterol and her 5K running program.

So, who is still with me on the 2013 Diet Progress program?  I haven't heard too much, but then I totally understand since it's summer and I know everyone is out doing stuff.  We still have a couple of months until the end of the year, so let's hear it - how is everyone doing??

Monday, August 19, 2013

Guest Blogger - Cholesterol Diet

The following guest post is done by my mom....
Last week I was telling you about how my cholesterol level is a whopping, and shocking,  290.  If you missed my post about that, you can go back and read it here.   As a result I began a 5K running program to help me get back in shape which I talked about here.
Since then, Tony and I sat down and put together a new eating plan for me.  For the most part it's been pretty doable, with only a few slip-ups and cheats on my part.

Good Foods
Unprocessed meats
Fibrous foods
Whole grains
Fish oil 
Low fat dairy
Smart balance omega 3 butter spread
Natural peanut butter
Bad Foods (bolded foods are strictly off limits)
Trans fat/partially hydrogenated oil
Coffee mate  (OMG - this was the hardest one, as well as the most surprising)
I can’t believe it’s not butter
Regular peanut butter
Processed foods
Baked goods
White bread
Full fat dairy
Processed foods high in saturated fat
Processed carbs
High fructose corn syrup 
The Plan
1)      3 fish oil per day
2)      1-2 servings/pieces of fruit
3)      2 servings of vegetables
4)      Replace all refined carbs with complex carbs/whole grains/unprocessed carbs
5)      Cook with olive oil/smart balance and not butter (never margarine)
6)      Eat low fat dairy
7)      20-30 minutes of exercise 4-6 times per week

Trans Fats are one of the items I need to stay away from.  You can read more about Trans Fats by going here and here. 




Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Guest Blogger - 5K Running Program Part 2

This week my mom is my guest blogger and she’s sharing her experience with tackling a 5K running program.  If you missed Monday’s post, please go back and read it for the background on why she decided to start a 5K Running Program.  Take it away mom……

Since I was appalled at how out of shape I was, I decided I needed to do something about it and hopefully bring down my high cholesterol levels in the process.  So I went to I tunes and started looking at the different running and work out programs they offered. I finally chose one called “5K Runner.”  I think it cost me $ 2.99.  Let me stress this right now – I am not endorsing the app and I don’t get any payment from them.  I chose the app because I thought it would help me accomplish what I wanted to do.  I’m just sharing my experience with this app with you.  Period.

The 5 K program is an 8 week program geared towards beginners – like me!  It’s a gradual program that you do 3 days per week.  You can run it outside or on a treadmill, which was one of the biggest reasons I chose this program – I specifically wanted to use my treadmill for it.
The first day started out pretty simple – a 25 minute total work out and the longest I had to run at one time was 1 minute.  Still exhausting, but I pushed through it.   Each day they change up the program a little, as far as how many minutes you do total, and they gradually increase the amount of time you are running.  So far I’ve gone through 4 weeks of the program and here’s my breakdown of my total minutes each time, along with the distance I did and the calories I burned according to my treadmill stats:

Week 1, Day 1
 25 minutes    1.43 miles  It wasn’t too bad.

Day 2
30 minutes     1.5 miles

Day 3
30 min.  1.5 miles   Halfway thru I was hating it. 

WEEK 2  Day 1
30 min.  1.67 miles  137 calories   Not bad

Day 2
28 min.  1.53 miles  138 calories

Day 3
30 min.  1.75 miles   150 calories

Week 3  Day 1   
26 min.  1.45 miles   118 calories

Day 2  
26 min.  1.46 miles   130 calories

Day 3
30 min.   1.63 miles   128 calories 

WEEK 4   Day 1

34 min.  1.83 miles  149 cal.   OMG – are they kidding me?  Run for 5 minutes??

Day 2
34 min    2.08 miles    187 cal.

Day 3
 36 min.   220 miles   180 cal.    Ran the 5 minutes intervals with no problem today!! 

What I’ve noticed so far:
I lost 3 pounds which was a bonus for me.
I can now run for 5 minutes straight!  5 minutes.  I am shocked.  Maybe not a big deal to some people but to me – huge deal!!
Some days I hate doing the program.  I’ll be about 3 minutes into the running section and all I can think about is how much I hate doing this.  It’s hard….  I’m tired….  It’s sucks to concentrate on running and I keep thinking about chocolate chip cookies.  I’m sweating.  Why am I putting myself through this?  It would be so easy to just stop and say I’ll do it tomorrow instead.  But I keep going. I push myself.  And I finish the workout and I’m proud of myself.  I did it.  I go take a shower, make a smoothie and plop my butt in my easy chair and think “Thank goodness I don’t have to do that again for 2 days.”  
Right now I am exactly half way through the program.   I’ll keep going.  I’ll also keep tweaking my diet.  Some days I do better than others.  Sometimes I have a small piece of cake or a hot dog.  But I keep eating more fruit and vegetables.  If I fall off my food program I don’t beat myself up over it.  I just say I’ll do better on my next meal.   But I keep at it. 

I’d like to thank my mom for sharing her story with us.  She said she’ll come back and give us updates.  Is anyone else out there on any special workout program  If you are, I’d love to hear about it.



Monday, August 12, 2013

Guest Blogger - 5K Running Program

This week my mom is sharing her story about her high cholesterol and the 5K running program she's started.

Hi, I’m Tony’s mom and he asked me to share my story about running a 5K program.  The biggest reason I decided to tackle the 5K program is because I went to the doctor in June and found out that I have high cholesterol.  To tell you the truth I was kind of surprised at that.  I’m 5 ft.  2” tall and I weighed 111 pounds.  How can I have high cholesterol?  But did you know that you don’t have to be overweight to have high cholesterol?  And sometimes overweight people have low cholesterol.  Go figure!
My fasting Cholesterol level was 290.  Wow.  Normal cholesterol levels are supposed to be fewer than 200.  I always thought I was a rather healthy eater.  I don’t eat a lot of junk food, fried food, or soda.   I usually eat a lot of vegetables and some fruit on a daily basis.  But I also eat stuff I probably shouldn’t, like lunchmeat, donuts, cookies, and cheese!  I love cheese – cheese is my downfall.   I will also eat hot dogs and hamburgers with fries – not every day, but once or twice a week.  So when I heard 290, I was blown away.  It was time to clean up my act.
The first thing I did was have Tony put together a list of good foods/bad foods for me.  I am now eating a LOT more fresh fruit and vegetables every day.  In fact, I try to put more fruits and vegetables on my plate than meat most of the time.  Instead of having ice cream for an evening snack, I switched to smoothies made of fresh fruit and yogurt or a bowl of watermelon or cantaloupe.
The next thing I did was look at my exercise routine.  I get outside a lot and do a great deal of walking/hiking.  I had been going to the gym and working out with weights, but once summer hit I had slacked off at the gym – a lot.  You know how that goes.  My husband went out and got me a treadmill last spring and I started walking on it every day.  I’d usually walk about 2 miles at a moderate rate with a high incline.  Tony told me I needed to change that and start running a little in order to get my heart rate up.  Well, I’ll tell you, I’d run on the darn thing for about 30 seconds and I’d be done.  Finished.    I’d be gasping for breath and slow it down to a walk and think “Oh my gosh, how can I be this out of shape??”
Please come back Wednesday and read part 2 of my series on starting my 5K running program.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Week 31 Progress

How is everyone progressing over the summer?  There is an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables out there and I hope you're taking advantage of them.  My mom has an interesting technique that she's been trying.  She makes sure her plate has more fresh fruit and vegetables on it than meat or pasta.  She is also ending her day with fresh watermelon or cantaloupe instead of ice cream. 

It's also the perfect time of year to be grilling, so cut fat and calories out of your diet by tossing steaks, chops and chicken on the grill!  Remember to stay away from fried foods, heavy sauces and fattening desserts.  Try to think about how you can exchange low fat snacks for the calorie laden snacks. 

One more thing - are you getting in some exercise each day?  Make an effort to do something, anything, if you are physically able and have the clearance from your doctor to engage in physical activity.  My mom recently started a 5K running program and I'm going to have her stop by next week to discuss that and share what she's learning.

I got a lot of emails this past week asking me about motivation and how I started on my weight loss journey.  Visit the quick links tabs at the top of the page to quickly access former blog posts where I discuss these topics.  You can also search for specific information on my blog by using the search box on the right side of the page.

And finally, visit my videos on U-Tube, which are also listed for your convenience at the top of this page. 

Until next week - eat healthy, exercise and be fit for life!!