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Melt the pounds with healthy Florida living

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I didn’t get out to many state parks in March – due in part to a couple weekends battling the flu, work call-ins, and miscellaneous other plans – but I still stuck to my efforts to be outside more and to make better food choices. After our foraging tour around the lighthouse, Jeff and I walran the St. Patrick’s Day fun run around John Prince Park before the parade in Delray. This is the first funrun I have done in a while and it didn’t feel too bad! It was a little overcast and slightly cool, so it was the perfect weather for a morning run.

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Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens

After the fun run, we had a little time to waste before the parade, so we went to the Morikami gardens to walk around. A very pretty and tidy gardens with a peaceful walk outside.

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Delray St Patrick’s Day parade and Pinball Museum

We like this parade because it’s festive, the people are pretty nice, and the Pinball Museum has essentially no wait for yummy lunch and beer. AND I get to play pinball and skeeball afterwards to my heart’s content 🙂

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More running adventures

Now that I know about the cute little loop by the lighthouse (JILONA), it is a nice place close to home to run laps. I have added it to my list of nice loops around home.

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We have also gotten in some spring training games and are ready for my favorite: minor league baseball season!

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Neighborhood kitty watching my jogging efforts

I have been walking and running 3-5 times each week and am slowly running more and walking less. My joints and feet are staying relatively comfortable – I back off a little if I get any twinges like my bursitis or plantar fasciitis might flare up again. I ran the Roots and Ruts 5k through the Jupiter Outstanding Natural Area and finished in 37:33. A slow time, but good considering how out of shape I’ve been. I am planning to do about one 5k per month into the end of summer, so look for this number creeping down steadily over the next few months.

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Speaking of numbers going down, I have steadily been losing weight in the last several weeks. I peaked at 192 pounds and have been losing about 2 pounds a week. It has really been surprising to me. I have lived almost my entire life with obsessive thoughts about food and a struggle to not eat too much. Weight loss always feels nearly impossible, because it takes weeks of effort to lose even a little bit and it takes almost no time to put it back on. For example, when Jeff and I went to Italy, I had a light breakfast with yogurt or fruit, then small plate pasta dishes with bread and wine for lunch and dinner. We had gelato twice. That doesn’t sound like much and we walked at least 10k steps daily. Despite this, I gained 10 pounds in 10 days! Darn carbs 🙁 And then the weight never went away despite an active lifestyle, no hormone imbalances, and eating a lot of salad.

So my resolutions this year have been to:

  1. Be outside and active a lot more often
  2. Make better food choices – try to eat real food instead of processed stuff
  3. Make a real effort to use my calorie tracker. I am using the MyFitnessPal and MapMyFitness apps but there are lots to choose from.

So far, I seem to have accidentally found a method that works for me:

  1. I exercise in the mornings because I know I will have no energy after work. I force myself to do at least something even if it is just a 3-4 mile walk. I listen to comedy Pandora or some interesting podcasts to get my day off on a light foot.
  2. I eat more slowly and mindfully and I only eat if I’m hungry. I also think about what I am about to eat first. I will now choose a handful of carrots instead of Cheetos or a big spinach salad instead of cupcakes. Sometimes this is really hard, but it has been easier now that I am trying to intentionally not think and obsess about what my next meal will be.
  3. I can only eat about 1000-1200 calories per day AND workout about 300-500 calories worth if I want to lose weight (stupid slow middle-aged metabolism!) I choose low calorie foods to eat during the day. This gives me a big allowance for dinner. I used to get hangry that I had used all but 300-400 calories during the day and then would be faced with an 800-1000 calorie dinner that I would have to choose to either nibble part of or eat and then be over my calorie allowance. Ugh 🙁
  4. I have Jeff making most of our dinners and choosing meals that are in the 500-700 calorie range. So if the dinner is actually a little more calorie-expensive, then I am not grumpy. If I was good on calories during the day, then I get full from a good dinner and might still have calorie room for a beer or ice cream. It seems kind of like the fasting fad diet people have been doing lately where they don’t eat during the day then have whatever for dinner. I prefer to eat a pile of veggies and yogurt all day and have something like a tasty roasted pork loin dinner with Hagen Daaz instead. So far it’s working for me!
  5. Finally, I don’t tell myself that I can never have certain things again, but have promised that I have to be good for 6 months. Then I can have more freedom. I figure this is a good period of time to build good habits, work out my bad cravings, and feel ok about pacing myself with junk food in the future. So far now, it’s yummy grilled fish, veggies, fruit, and healthy stuff while hamburgers and pizza will have to wait 6 months. I’ll let you know how it’s going!
Yummy yard mulberries
Our frog friend that lives in the pollinator house


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