I’m on day one of week six with yoga. I ventured into an hour session rather than my thirty-minute one on Monday. My body is quite mad at me still and it hurts to laugh. I’m thinking this is a good thing as I’m honing in on all the right areas I want to work on. I also recognize the names of poses now and can follow without straining my neck to see the television. I’ve started following a beginner’s yoga group, as well as reading Yoga Journal. The group and articles help as they remind me that this is an individual type of exercise and progress is measured only by YOU. I also have the advantage of reaching out to my best friend who is a certified yoga instructor for guidance and reassurance. I’m feeling committed—in a good way.
The “livet” is going well, too. All of the meals I’m preparing are healthy, without any sense of restricting what I’m craving. I’m still only down ten pounds, but I know the inches are coming off by the way things fit. I knew I was saving all those clothes in the back of the closet for a good reason! I’ve been using the MyNetDiary app to keep track of my daily calories and exercise, not to mention my water intake. It’s not an exact science, but it helps put things in perspective these past three weeks. Portion sizes are reduced, however I’m enjoying everything I put together. It does give me a grade on my choices, making me the honor student I strive to be. Some of my choices are C-average, but I disagree with the notion that the turkey meatballs I make are anywhere near average. I got a D on my grass-fed ground beef hamburger—an absolute A in my book. So, the app has flaws (not really)—but, don’t we all.
The large spike in the above diagram is the day we ventured out for meals and went a bit “crazy.” I devoured half of a blackened shrimp wrap and half a burger for lunch. For dinner, we had some pineapple fried rice with a side of Shrimp Pad Thai. Although I got and A and B as grades, my body decided to hang on to the 175-ish grams of carbs I ate. The next spike was also due to going out for lunch. It's a bit challenging counting the calories, unless the restaurant posts them on the menu. I do venture to ask about the nutrition numbers, but always feel like one of those people I normally roll my eyes about.
Today marks the end of our three week kidless staycation (we don’t really count the older one as he’s always at work). Our two teenagers arrive at midnight tonight from Texas and will no doubt sleep most of the day away tomorrow. We didn’t do as much as we would have liked while they were gone—a trip to Jamaica, long-road trips, and beach days—but, it was so very pleasant. There was no anxiety, frustration, or influx of whining—from us or them. The house stayed clean and there was always food in the fridge. I’m sure they will be relieved to be home and we did miss them—mostly. We will consider it a good recharge and hope for the best. The youngest starts high school in twelve days, so we just have to all get along until then.
With eight days of Yoga behind me, I think I have officially started a routine. This includes both exercise and eating healthier. I have always despised dieting as it means to do without—in my mind. I don't mean healthy in the sense of brown rice and no bread. I mean healthy in the sense of fewer calories by measuring (okay yes, sometimes eyeballing) the portions. This also means choosing wisely what I decided to eat.
Although I never thought I’d ever do this, I am going to quote Kanye West. I honestly don’t know if he came up with it—I just heard him say it during an interview with David Letterman. Rather than a diet, I am now on a “livet."
I like the idea of the word as eating healthy and exercise helps you do just that—live. I’m learning that I can keep the calories down and still enjoy the foods I want. I don’t know how it is for you, but conditioning my mind to enjoy what I eat has been easier than I thought. Maybe because I was ready for it, I don’t know. My weakness is Mexican food and it’s pretty much a staple in our home. Quesadillas, tacos, enchiladas—essentially anything that I can wrap a tortilla around. Chips and salsa? Yea, I’m all about that. I did something remarkable the other day. I counted out the exact number of tortilla chips for a serving size to go with a homemade avocado dip. Did I eat just those? No. However, the three extra chips I added were enough and didn’t break me. I am a bottomless pit when it comes to tortilla chips with salsa, guacamole, or queso. I don’t get full. I simply run out of chips. That day, I was satisfied with the portion I served and honestly felt good about myself.
Today’s lunch was Poblano Chicken Quesadillas that teetered on 250 calories. I got the recipe from Cooking Light’s website and made it my own. I eliminated the mushrooms as I am not that trendy. And, I don’t poach chicken—ever! I lightly seasoned the chicken, pan-frying it in a little olive oil. Using one of those handy calorie calculator websites, I got lower than the original recipe’s calorie count. Mostly because I wasn’t cooking for six people and needed far fewer ingredients, including cheese. For those of you who enjoy cooking, you learn what ingredients work together as you hone your culinary skills. You also learn what doesn’t work, like mushrooms in a quesadilla.
My goals are set small now, making success feel more attainable. I’ve become friends with the bathroom scale after many years of bitter fighting. I simply ignored it as the scale never had anything nice to say. Now, I look forward to our morning conversations.
The word Yoga translates to mean union—the union of your divine consciousness. It’s a spiritual discipline, but a discipline nonetheless. I’m on day seven of my tour of divinity and I’m determined to make this a routine way of life. One might think that Yoga is easy, but one would be wrong. It’s not just stretching in quirky positions and lying on the floor. It’s described as a group of physical, mental, and spiritual practices. These past six days “practicing” Yoga have been a bit challenging to say the least. Mostly because I lack balance—putting on underwear offers unstable footing. You may also realize that you aren’t as flexible as you once were. Of course that doesn’t stop me from trying to put my foot behind my head.
Although I have taken Yoga classes in the past, it wasn’t with any frequency and it’s been years. I stayed to the back of the class and giggled as I wobbled through the poses. This time, to save face, I headed to the library and grabbed a few DVDs. I grabbed one for beginners, one for weight loss, and one for better buns (the main reason for exercise). Given my limitations of being essentially new to Yoga, rather unsteady, and slightly inflexible—I exercise until my body says, “Nope.” Each day I push a little further and it’s actually working out for me as I go further each day. The key is to follow the correct techniques, listen to your body, and breathe. I’m not doing any of those fluidly, but I’m getting there.
There are various kinds of Yoga, and it’s not just about the physical exercise—but a way of life.
This by no means covers all the aspects of Yoga, but for me, it’s a start to understanding how to achieve my goals both mentally and physically. I think the bottom line is to do something for yourself that in the end makes you feel good.
I am a woman-child at heart; continuously evolving to find my place in life. I am a mother, a daughter, and a sister. I am a lover and a dreamer--an explorer and a traveler. But it's my passion for writing that allows me to explore my ingenuity. This is something that undoubtedly carries over to the many roles that make up the ever evolving woman I am.