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Jennifer M

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  1. Hello everyone, I decided I need a goal OTHER than one for weight, so I have set a personal challenge to exercise 100 days in a row and I invite/challenge you to join me if you are interested. Now, if you are already exercising daily, that's great. I'd love to hear what you are doing to stay motivated every day. For the purposes of this challenge, I define exercise as anything that keeps you moving for at least 20 minutes CONTINUOUSLY at least once a day. Brisk walking, running, biking, swimming, lifting weights, yoga, tai chi, ZUMBA classes - whatever activity and whatever intensity works for you. I intentionally am starting this in the summer, when I know the weather will be more cooperative, but also when schedules (especially vacation) may be more challenging. Also, I personally have challenged myself to vary my workouts daily - that is, to never do the EXACT same activity two days in a row (unless absolutely necessary). This might be a good challenge for you if you already exercise daily, but have fallen into a rut or become bored with your workouts. So far, so good. On Sunday, I rode my bike for about 45 minutes (at an easy pace). Yesterday, I swam for 20 minutes (well, calling it swimming would be a stretch - I alternated swimming/water-walking (!) because I am SO de-conditioned I couldn't make it the whole length of the pool! (a measly 25 meters, but hey, ya gotta start somewhere). And today, I did my C25K workout (Week 4, Day 1). Tomorrow will be strength training. Then I'll probably just repeat the pattern. We'll see. The idea is to keep myself from getting bored (It also happens to be a great way to accelerate your body's response to training - nothing better for this than "cross-training!") Let's start the official challenge TODAY. It so happens that 100 days from today will be.....HALLOWEEN! (That's right, October 31) Now that's a scary thought! If I/we can accomplish this, then we will have a solid HABIT of daily exercise WELL-established in time for the Fall Holiday season....and perhaps a few more pounds lost on the way! How about it? Can you exercise daily from now until Halloween? - Jen
  2. Well, Ihad to back down a bit....I am a teacher and the last few weeks of school were C-R-A-Z-Y so I didn't get all my workouts in for C25K. Starting today, I backed off to Week 4, Day 1. Barely got through it as it was VERY hot and humid, even at 9am! (Guess I need to get up earlier!) Still, I did it, and that's what counts. Overall, I find the program very do-able. I plan to keep posting here and DO plan to register for a real race when I get close to finishing the C25K program....
  3. Just a quick update...just started Week 6 and I'm feeling pretty good! I'm not quite averaging 3 workouts a week - sometimes I let 2 or 3 days go between workouts, but I am still making progress..... - Jen
  4. Just finished Week 4 on the C25K program....I *think* it's getting easier! Very frustrating at times, though....all this extra weight I am carrying (sigh). Still, I feel good AFTER my run, and my energy is beginning to come back. At this point in the program, I feel like my legs are working harder than my heart....I can't run fast enough to feel like my heart rate is elevated...so I guess I'm still building up that strength and endurance for my lower body. Monday I will start Week 5 - I hear that's a real turning point, and hoping it's not going to feel overwhelming. WE shall see. At least I have stuck with it this far. - JEn
  5. Thanks, Little Chubber - I remember you too! It's good to be back, and yes, I know I can do this! I may not longer be doing personal training as a career, but I can sure do it for MYSELF :-) I decided to ease back into an exercise routine by starting withe the Couch 2 5k program. I just finished Week 4, and it IS getting easier.....have to remember that I need to start where I AM, not worry about what I USED to be able to do! - Jen
  6. Hello everyone, I am back after a hiatus of several years. Long story short, I went back to work as a high school teacher and let's just say I had a HUGE learning curve and it took awhile for me to come up for air. Last year, I took a teaching position with an online (cyber) school, and became a sedentary person. I never realized how many calories I used to burn just standing and moving around a classroom all day. Well, after 3 months of sitting at a computer all day, the pounds came back on, I am embarrassed to admit. So, this Lifetimer realized what I should have known all along - that without the support of my BUDDIES, I can't do this thing called weight management. So here I am (again). And when I signed back on, I saw, much to my chagrin, that I had been "retired!" Heck, I'm not old enough for THAT! I know I can get back to Goal with all of your support. Here's counting on you guys, Jen
  7. Hey, Jalapeno Ann, I was wondering the same thing. I am just returning to BCB after several years' hiatus (they showed me as "retired" when I first logged on - boy did that make me feel old! Anyhow, I am disappointed at how "dead" this forum seems....it used to be quite an active area on BCB. While I would NOT call myself a runner at the moment, I AM doing the Couch 2 5K program and am on Week 4. WHEN I succeed, I DO plan to sign up for a local 5k race for sure, and I'd love to have some support from experienced runners out there! - Jen
  8. Hello, I know this thread is old, but I am hoping to revive it. I was a dedicated BCBer a few years ago, and then got away for a while, for various reasons, but now I am back. I need to get back to goal, and part of that is getting back into exercising regularly. I decided to do the Couch 2 5k program to start with and am wondering if anyone else here is doing it? I just started Week 4 and am making good progress, though it is still extremely challenging, as I am about 40lbs heavier than I should be, and boy can I feel it! Anyhow, I'd love to hear from anyone else doing this program, or anyone who HAS done it in the past.....I did Week 4, Workout 1 yesterday... - Jen
  9. PPS: Most people do NOT need to do an hour of intense cardio a day to lose and/or maintain weight. You can burn as many calories (and increase your metabolic rate for more than 24 hours FOLLOWING your workout) if you do 20 minutes of high-intensity inteval training INSTEAD of 1 hour of moderate-high steady-state aerobic activity. Why? The scientists aren't sure yet. But they think it has to do with the TRANSITION you put your cardiorespiratory system through every time you go from high to low intensity. Anyway, IF you are pressed for time and can't spend hours in the gym, try interval training and I think you'll be pleased with the results. (Try this basic routine to starte: warmup for 5 minutes at low intensity, then do 1 minute High, 2 minutes LOW (and I do mean low). Repeat for 5 intervals, and you've got your 20 minute workout. Check out this video from WebMD for more info: http://www.webmd.com/video/benefits-interval-training - Jen
  10. Actually, as a fitness professional, I would argue that doing 300 crunches is counter-productive. Especially if you do them every day. (Your body will acclimate and never bother to get stronger if you do the same thing all the time). Better to do regular crunches, or crunches while on a Swiss Ball, while holding a weight (dumbbell or plate) on your chest. If you can do 25 crunches easily, then you need to add weight - just like any other exercise. Even better, do DIFFERENT ab exercises EVERY OTHER day. (Monday - Bicycles and leg lifts, Wednesday - crunches and planks, Friday - Oblique crunches and ball-tucks) Also, I agree with the previous posters that a) you can't target fat-loss for a particular area BUT b) the TYPES of food you eat can significantly affect how your body STORES fat. Here's a quote from WebMD: A recent study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that a calorie-controlled diet rich in whole grains trimmed extra fat from the waistline of obese subjects. Study participants who ate all whole grains (in addition to five servings of fruits and vegetables, three servings of low-fat dairy, and two servings of lean meat, fish, or poultry) lost more weight from the abdominal area than another group that ate the same diet, but with all refined grains. "Eating a diet rich in whole grains while reducing refined carbohydrates changes the glucose and insulin response and makes it easier to mobilize fat stores," says study researcher Penny Kris-Etherton, PhD, RD, a distinguished professor of nutritional sciences at Penn State University. "Visceral fat is more metabolically active and easier to lose than subcutaneous fat, especially if you have plenty of it and the right conditions are met, such as the ones in our study." I highly recommend you check out the full article at: http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/the-truth-about-belly-fat Oh, and don't believe any of that stuff you see about Acai being the miracle for losing bellyfat. It isn't, and you'd need to count any POints for it the same way you count anything else for WW.... - Jen
  11. Hi again, Day 6 - a HUNGRY day.... Today was Day 6 for me, and, while I did stay on plan, I was hungry - a LOT. It was weird day in that sense. I was fine up until 4:30pm when I found I was REALLY hungry, so I popped some fat-free popcorn (5c for 2 points) - and 20 min. later I was STILL hungry. So I had a cheese stick (2pts)....and 20 min. later, I was STILL hungry....so I had a handful of baby carrots with 1/4c. hummus (2points) - WHILE I was making dinner (!). When dinner was ready (italian turkey sausage with peppers and onions, served with pasta - 8 pts), I was still hungry - but less so. THEN I really wanted ice cream (though NOT hungry!), so I had a cup of edy's grand light (4 pts). The grand total for my day was 37 points! (VERY unusual for me to each this much....) I'm hoping it's just hormones, because I'm expecting my period in a few days.... Even so, I'm still on track for my week, though I've used up all my weekly flexpoints and most of my activity points (when you log your Points online, the activity points are done weekly). Just means I have to be extra careful tomorrow. (My weigh-in is Tuesday a.m.) Another workout will help, too. I've done WW long enough to know that some days are just like this, and there isn't always a logical explanation. But I also know that as long as I eat when I am REALLY and TRULY hungry, I won't end up binging..... - Jen
  12. Hi all, Day's 4 Lesson: It's OK to NOT eat food brought to me as a gift! Today went well, too. It helped that the kids slept in until 10am, so I didn't make breakfast until then :-) I know, I gotta start changing our schedule - school starts for ALL of us soon...(I'm a teacher). Anyway, as I said, the day went well. Even when, at 9:30pm (oldest son has a friend over for a sleepover) when Dad took the kids to WaWa (our local convenience store chain) for milkshakes - AND brought one home for me! I am proud to say that I DID graciously say THANK YOU, took two sips, and then realized: a) I wasn't hungry and b) It didn't taste good enough to justify downing the whole thing for 14+ points. So....I waited until an opportune moment and then dumped it into the sink. No hurt feelings, and I'm still on plan :-) Hey, Lillie - I love shrimp, too, but you're right - a tad pricey! If you like hummus, it has 2g protein per 1/4c serving. And, as Kimberly says, if you combine it with some veggies, it makes for a VERY filling snack. Kimberley - I am becoming more and more a fan of beans :-) We love a simple dinner of beans and brown rice with veggies (and some hot sauce) thrown in.....I make a BIG pot of brown rice over the weekend and use the leftovers throughout the week. OH, ,and one protein snack I had yesterday - scrambled eggs leftover from my son's breakfast. I had 1/4 c for 2 points. I realized when I ate them that these would be real easy to take with me to school - just put 'em in a container in my break room fridge and wave them for a snack..... - Jen
  13. Hi again, Day 3's Lesson: Eat when you're hungry Yesterday, Day 3, went well. I feel like I'm really tuning into my hunger signals. One thing I'm "doing differetly" this time around is EATING WHEN I'M HUNGRY. I know, I know - WW tells us all the time to not go hungry. But every time I've been on the Program in the past, there have been times when I have felt deprived due to hunger and having "used up all my Points." So, this time, I'm going to go ahead and eat something if I'm really and truly hungry. Yesterday, for example, we unexpectedly had to run an errand right when I was about to get dinner going. I was beginning to feel hungry and knew if I didn't take pre-emptive measures, that I'd be STARVING by the time we got home. So I threw together a "snack" to take with me: some baby carrots in a ziploc baggy, a scoop (1/4c) of red pepper hummus (2 points) in a small container, plus a cheese stick (2 points). When we got home (at 9:30pm), I wasn't the least bit hungry (yes, we did go through Burger King to feed the kids :-( but I didn't eat anything. So, for 4 points, I avoided a binge. Even if I went over my Target for the day (20 pts), I'm sure it wasn't by much, and it'll fall out of my weekly FlexPoints anyway..... Once again, I think the combination of fiber and protein was the ticket to feeling full for so long afterward.....and very little sugar, again (4g carbs, only 1g sugars) - Jen PS On Day 2, I ended up eating a BUNCH of fruit by the day's end....an orange here, a banana there. But again, it's only a point or two and definitely helped me stay on track....
  14. Definitely use them, or not, as you wish. That's what they're there for. As for gaining...well, that's part of the weight-loss journey. I don't think there are too many of us here who have lost weight EVERY week - especially women with our monthly hormone cycles. So when someone tells you they gained during a week when they ate all their flex points, well, maybe they gained for other reasons. (In my case, because I've become complacent and lazy about tracking EVERY bite, so it doesn't LOOK like I overate when I probably DID...) My husband loves wings, too. Our solution is to put some boneless chicken breasts in a ziploc baggy, then toss with Frank's Wings Sauce, let marinade for a half hour or so, and then grill them (about 4-5 minutes per side). Although Frank's Wings Sauce does contain canola oil, you need that to help coat your chicken breasts, and if you use it as a marinade, it's 0 Points. You get all the FLAVOR of wings, without the FAT. (And no, there's no sugar in Frank's Hot Sauce). I have to agree that 29 Points sounds like a LOT of chicken breasts, though....but if that's what you enjoy, and what will keep you on track, then it's OK! - Jen
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