It Was Good While It Lasted

The decision to give up coffee was kind of spontaneous.  Nearly two months have passed since I gave up my freshly brewed java.    Fresh coffee was a nice early morning treat and part of my morning ritual.

The decision to give up coffee was sudden and random.  One day I just noticed that I didn’t  feel like myself.  The feeling was more than the typical jitters from too much caffeine.  Aside from the increase in hot flashes,  I felt sick from it.  The taste changed too.  It was nasty.   That’s not supposed to happen. What the heck is going on?  Hormones I suppose.  Or maybe it’s my body’s way of telling me it’s time to give it up.

Anyways my current morning ritual now includes organic loose leaf green tea. And guess what?   It’s working well.  I actually feel better, more energized and I don’t get the dragging feeling after the caffeine boost. Yay!

So imagine my delight when I stumbled on a Green Tea Latte at Starbucks.


 🙂 Aaaaaaaah!  The heavenly gates opened up.   I tried the latte and loooooooved it!  Although I like the vibe of Starbucks, they’re too pricey for me.  This day was an exception because I was on the road and ran in to get some oatmeal.  I ended up with the oats and the green tea latte.  I substituted regular milk for coconut milk.

Fast forward to my third one.   😦

You know I had to know the nutritional content, so I went to the company’s website.

“Smooth and Creamy.” Yes.

“Lightly sweetened.” NOT!!

Check out the sugar content!!  Oh my gosh!  I was devastated then I realized the whopping 27 grams of sugar was for a Grande.  Uh oh. I’ve been drinking the Venti, which is even larger. Ugh!

The Venti is loaded with even more sugar!  36 grams!!  This is ridiculous.  Starbucks has to do better. They got that one off on me.  This is yet another example of why we have to stay diligent in researching all that we eat and drink.  250 Calories. 9 grams of saturated fat. 90 calories from fat.  When I read the label, I became sad and angry. Who would think green tea would have so much sugar?  Yup. They tricked me.  

Whelp.  It was good while it lasted.  I just can’t and don’t consume sugar like that. Speaking of sugar, if you’re trying to lose weight or maybe trying to reduce your sugar intake, check out the video, The Truth About Sugar that I recently watched. It may change the way you think about your favorite sugary snack.

I’ve got a lot going on these days.  When things settle down, I have tons of good stuff to share.  So hang in there with me.  If you like this post, please like, share and follow me.

Smooches!  🙂


The Simple Pleasures in Life

This morning I traded the gym for annual blood work. Yuck!  I would have much preferred the workout.  However, healthy living is more than physical fitness and nutrition.  HL also means yearly doctor visits.

While struggling with the daily balancing act of family life, often put our health on the back-burner… that is until a health issue or crisis arises, then we expect the doctors to put everything on hold for us.  Ladies–for the sake of being caring for our families, we must put our health first.  If we are not around, alive and well, in the future, we can’t possibly care for our loved ones.

Being off in the summer gives me the luxury and the flexibility of getting my well MD visits in without the hassle of juggling work, football, and all the other family stuff.

Like most women, the OBGYN is at the top of the hate list, but statistics show that

More than 20,000 women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer this year.

-Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple Health

So, be sure to get your much hated annual visit in. Blood work, an eye exam, a visit to my general practitioner, and the dreaded but much-needed mammogram are all in order for this month.

According to the American Cancer Society,

In 2013, an estimated 232,340 new cases of invasive breast cancer were expected to be diagnosed among US women, as well as an estimated 64,640 additional cases of in situ breast cancer.

That year, approximately 39,620 US women were expected to die from breast cancer. Only lung cancer accounts for more cancer deaths in women.

After getting blood work done, I could have easily returned home, ate and went to the gym, but I felt sluggish and have been running everywhere for a few weeks, so I decided to take my butt home and chill.

B’Dazzle (my son) wanted to cook his own omelet this morning.  Since I was home by 8 o’Clock and knew I wasn’t going out, I could take the time to enjoy the simple pleasure of “supervising” him cook his omelet.

Chef Tailor

 The chef in action! 🙂

He also likes spinach, tomatoes, and mushrooms in his omelet, but wanted a simple one today.

tailors omelet

Isn’t that a beauty?!

He’s an old fashion 11-year-old.  Still believes in magic, in santa, is very affectionate and has the biggest and kindest heart.  OMG!!  I’m a lucky mom!  My mom was complimenting him on his cooked egg and he said,

“I’m not ready to live my own life yet!  I’m enjoying living my life now”

B’Dazzle is a very smart soon-to-be 12-year-old!  I like…no..I LOVE that he’s in no hurry to grow up.  I’m sick and tired of seeing kids trying to act like grown ups.  That mess is not my cup of tea–can’t stand it.  Let kids be kids!

I had an omelet too.  Spinach and egg, but I cheated with some shredded pepper jack cheese.  It was fabulous and had a nice kick to it.

pepper jack

The red chilli peppers are a definite indicator of this cheese’s kick! Hot!

my omelet

Aaah, the finished product!

Is the cheese, clean eating?  Nope!  But come on now…. everybody cheats! Lol!

The rest of my day is going to be simple and include a little poolside serenity.

Happy Saturday and enjoy your weekend!  🙂

ADDITIONAL READS…

Women’s Health

Mayo Clinic

Women’s Health Research Center

Women’s Mental Health

Women’s Mental Health Consortium 

NJ Division on Women

Wednesday’s WOD

Warm Up:  3 RDS of

50 DU’s (Double Under’s)/100 Singles

10 Push Ups

15 Sit Ups

Mobility:  7 MIN

SWOD:  10 MIN EMOM

5-10 Pull UPS + 10 Air Squats

WOD:    10 RDS

Row 40 SEC     *10 SEC Transition

Hollow Rocks/Sit Ups 40 SEC

These days, any day that I can do a CrossFit class is an added bonus. When I normally take  CrossFit classes several days a week, I usually schlep into the 3:30 class wishing I’d stopped by Wawa for a 12 ounce cup of Joe, but not today.  I was ready for whatever was in store for me.

No weight lifting was included in today’s WOD.  On the white board, the WOD looked easy. Ha! Ha!  I know better!  The coach’s instructions were:

“If you use bands for your pull up’s, challenge yourself by using a thinner band.”

I did just that. The first minute, I knocked out 10 pull ups, the second minute 9, the remaining eight minutes, I literally squeezed out four or five for each minute and I used a thin blue band. I’m happy!

I’ve missed rowing terribly, so when I sat down on the equipment, I could have stayed there for the rest of the WOD.

The greatest challenge for me? Hollow Rocks!  Hollow Rocks!  They were horrible.  I tried to conquer the Hollow Rocks, but today they got the best of me.  Lol!  Next time HR’s!!

Ten minutes from now, the 11:00 O’Clock news will be on. I’m exhausted.  If we get the snow and ice forecasted, I could get the chance to sleep in late tomorrow.  But I can’t be certain now so I’m going to sleep. When the alarm clock goes off at 4:40 a.m., I’d like to be some what coherent.

Good Night!

Saturday’s WOD

Image courtesy of google images

Image courtesy of google images

WOD

Warm Up: 3 Rounds

200M Run + 1 Cindy (5 Pull ups, 10 Push ups, 15 Air Squats)

Mobility: 7 Minutes

SWOD: Romanian Dead Lifts @ 40 x 1
4-6 Reps x 3 Sets

WOD: For Time

1000M Row

50 KBS (53/35) (44/20)

30 Burpees

This was the first Saturday morning CrossFit class that I’ve done in a while, so I was excited. So who gets excited about a WOD? Me!

Sometimes the WOD is posted on the LivingWell’s CrossFit website, but I wanted to be surprised today, so I didn’t take a peak.

CrossFitters had the option of WOD A or B. WOD B included muscle ups… I’m not ready for those, so I knew the alternative was for me.

Around 800 meters of rowing, my hamstrings started to burn to the tune of P’Diddy, singing….  “Hello Good morning… ”  Music is great motivation during a workout. A funky beat makes me wanna dance so I keep it moving.

Thanks to my friend and trainer, my kettle bell swings (26 lbs.)  are getting better. Yesterday, I did a better job of controlling the KB.  When I brought the KB down between my legs, I remembered to keep it steady and prevent it from swinging and rocking back and forth. As a result, my arms were on fire!

Oh wait, something else noteworthy– In the warm ups, I did the three rounds of five pull ups with a skinny blue band…. non stop!! At one point, I had to double-check because I was surprised that it was “me” doing them. Training for this competition is undoubtedly making me stronger.  How exciting!

Somehow I misread the count on the number of burpees… a fellow crossFitter walks up to me, “I think you’re doing too many! What number are you on?” Umm… 46.. “We were only supposed to do 30.”

LOL!! Darn! No wonder everyone else was finished! It’s all good though, At least I know I can kick 30 out with no problem.  I’m just happy that I could take CrossFit today.

Today is rest day and… the Superbowl of course. I’ve read in other blogs about cheat days. But it’s kind of weird, but I haven’t had the urge to cheat since the New Year. Hot wings, chili, chips, etc… will be a good test today.  I am ready though, because I will have healthy alternatives with me.

Regardless, I’ll enjoy today’s game and hope that you do too. It doesn’t matter who wins, I just hope that it’s a good game (no blow out), and that the commercials and halftime are entertaining. There’s nothing better than laughing at the crazy Superbowl commercials.

Have a great day and enjoy the game!

Why You Should Read Food Labels

The packaging and labeling of food items is a business.  It is in fact–my opinion– a business that motivates consumer behavior.  Package coloring, size, graphics, and terminology will either make you or a child take a second look or scowl and turn away.

The most savvy and educated consumer is capable of falling into the trap of buying what “looks” healthy.

Even more so now since my figure competition training has started, I carefully–or so I thought– read the food labels on mostly everything I buy.

On Friday, I ran into a local wholesale food store to buy two rotisserie chickens. Thursday night my family ate the (my) remaining “protein” meat source. Friday is an off night for cooking, so I needed to buy something that was already cooked.

Friday nights must be a popular rotisserie chicken night, because only one was left at four something in the afternoon.  I waited a few short minutes to get the second bird that wasn’t made “natural.” But that wasn’t an issue for me.

Here’s the label:

Looks Good!

Looks Good!

Looks good right!

Gluten Free
No MSG
No Hormones or Steroids Added
No Antibiotics Ever
All Vegetarian Diet
No Animal By-Products
Minimal Processed
No Artificial Ingredients Added

No Antibiotics

Minimally Processed

The packing is even “Eco-Friendly”

EcoFriendly

Before I carved my six and half ounces of chicken on my plate, I pulled the skin and any remnants of fat off.

As I’m getting my grub on, the package is in my eye shot range and I happen to see the “Nutrition Facts.” Holy Moly!!

Look at the the Sodium!

Look at the the Sodium!

I’m cool with everything except the SODIUM counts. 490 MG per 3 oz. serving!! That means I wolfed down 1,125 (6 1/2 oz.) of sodium with just the chicken.  Okay… wait!

I read the ingredients. The first three read, “Chicken, Water, Sea Salt…” Hello!  There’s your sodium amounts girl!  Sodium chloride, salt, or sodium, it is all the same!  Too much is not good for the body.

Well… I did pull the skin off. But still. During the cooking time, the sea salt that coated the chicken’s skin, was baked in and absorbed into the chicken. So how much sodium did I actually consume, I don’t know.

What I do know is that I probably won’t buy this again. The other bird, from a different company had equal amounts of sodium.

So what’s the big deal about sodium?  Stay with me….

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend limiting sodium to less than 2,300 mg a day — or 1,500 mg if you’re age 51 or older, or if you are black, or if you have high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.*  (I consumed nearly half the dietary guidelines in one sitting.)

Sodium cannot and should not be completely eliminated from the body.  Many of the naturals foods that we eat contain smaller amounts of sodium.  However, the American Heart Association reports that,

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide, and high blood pressure is a major risk factor. In some people, sodium increases blood pressure because it holds excess fluid in the body, creating an added burden on the art.  Too much sodium in the diet may also have other harmful health effects, including increased risk for stoke, heart failure, osteoporosis, stomach cancer and kidney disease. 

Studies have proven that high blood pressure and heart disease can be heredity.  Add the genetic predisposition to the disease and you have a recipe for disaster.

Whether you are trying to fit into your size 8 jeans, look stunning for your wedding, look hot on the beach, run a marathon, just get into shape, or something else, it is important to read food labels and educate yourself on the foods you put into your body.

We’re only given one body in this life, so why not treat it like a king or queen that it so greatly deserves.

Have a great day and remember to keep it movin!

Sources and Additional Reading

Mayo Clinic

The American Heart Association

Look At What You’re Drinking…

Rarely does a day go by and I am not asked about my diet. While I have my “cheats,” the one thing you won’t see me drinking is soda. Read this great post about soda consumption and you will understand why I don’t indulge in it.