Tuesday, 19 January 2010

C25K Success - reflections

C25K success is the most frequent Google search phrase that finds this little blog. 

My original success can be found back in March 2009 and is the first time I ran for over 30 minutes straight.  I ran for 40 minutes and was absolutely thrilled.

It was a 2009 resolution to take up running.  I bought the Nike+ shoes, the iPod nano, the armband, and the shoe chip and put the C25K sessions into my phone calendar.  I cannot say enough good things about this program.  I can still remember the first time I ran for a minute, the first time I ran for an entire song (Rihanna SOS), my first five minutes, the first 8 minutes and so on.  Funnily enough I played  SOS so many times during those first few months of C25K that I can’t stand it anymore!

7 months after starting the program I ran 10 miles with my younger brother – I use the term ‘with’ loosely since he lapped me at mile 7 (his legs are a good few inches longer than mine and he’s training for the military!)

8 months into the program I was running the five miles home a couple times a week from work (and beating the 2 buses I normally took).

9 months into the program I ran my first race, all 13.1 miles of it and didn’t stop once. 

I have lost 20lbs since beginning that journey a year ago and absolutely LOVE running. I’m going to run the half-marathon again this year and will hopefully smash my previous time. And I owe it all to the C25K program.

- CJ

Monday, 18 January 2010

Weight loss FAIL

First an apology to Angie for using the F-word there but it’s true.  While I only had one really bad day, I truly think I need to get back to tracking – either calories or points because the scale is just not going in the right direction and I’m guessing it’s my portion sizes.


I am sincerely hoping that you can’t gain 4lbs just like that in a week so hopefully it’ll be gone this time next week once I’m over all my hormonal etc issues.

Another week…


Sunday, 17 January 2010

And she’s back

Today I knocked out five miles – I last hit that mileage during the half-marathon in September.  Granted, at times I wanted to die a little but I didn’t stop and I even looked down a couple of times to see the Garmin displaying some 10 or 11 minute miles which I was happy about.  I was fully expecting to be back at my 13 minute mile pace, but I’m actually running about the same speed as I was in June/July so hopefully I’m well on track to PR-ing at the half-marathon again this year.

5 miles – 61:38 minutes – 690 calories

Mile 1: 11:58

Mile 2: 12:19

Mile 3: 12:16

Mile 4: 12:38

Mile 5:12:30

I had an expensive trip to Whole Foods on Friday but scored some brown rice protein powder, vegetarian refried black beans, organic multi-grain tortillas, brown rice sushi x2, edamame, freshly ground peanut butter, medjool dates, oats, Amy's burrito x2 and some green veggie powder that I’m going to experiment with for green monsters. 

Weigh-in tomorrow.  I’m not feeling good about it – I had a proper binge day on Thursday involving one and a half Pret’s cheese and pickle baguettes, which is about 1,000 calories right there. 4 Millie’s cookies were also devoured, as well as a pot of hummus and carrots.

TMI warning!!

The next day my period arrived – hmmmm, wonder if there’s a hormonal link there?!

Catch ya for weigh-in.


Monday, 11 January 2010

Monday weigh-in

So for anyone keeping track…last week I weighed in at 196.2

And this morning?


That would be a less than stellar .6lb loss…ah well, it’s a loss and I’ll take it.

On a happier, and far less fuzzy, note – last night I snacked on this gem of a giant HEAB protein pancake.  Except this time I whipped out the crepe pan and made one giant crepe….with some drizzling of the agave it was delish!


Here’s to another week and another loss…g’night bloggies.

- CJ

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Eat like a food blogger

Yesterday, I started my morning with a bowl of Kerf-inspired oats which consisted of 1/2 cup of oats (p.s. I just discovered that UK and US cups are different sizes – so annoying!) and a cup of almond milk cooked on the stove top with half a ripe banana.  It’s topped with the other half of the banana and a teaspoon of almond butter. 

On the side, Indian spice chai – cloves and cardamom and cinnamon, yum!


After breakfast and some cleaning, I ran 2.5 miles in the freezing cold, dodging snow and ice and then did some shopping.

Lunch was protein pancakes courtesy of Heather Eats Almond Butter, which I made with a scoop of my berry smoothie protein powder, egg whites, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder.  My first attempt wasn’t pretty, mainly because I ignored the advice and made one GIANT pancake, but it still tasted good and was topped with another teaspoon of almond butter and some agave.

I LOVE the protein pancake idea, particularly since the berry smoothie protein powder is GROSS as a smoothie but somehow as a pancake it’s delicious.

Not gonna lie, I went back for a second batch and this time made two pancakes out of the batter and they were even better. Topped them with just agave since I have an almond butter problem!

Dinner was salmon with stir-fried veggies.

Breakfast this morning was a Fitnessista breakfast cookie, which I made with 1/2 a cup of oats, a scoop of vanilla soya protein powder, a teaspoon of almond butter, a splash of almond milk and a mashed banana.

Lunch was a can of Amy's Black Bean soup – another Whole Foods find from my trip on Friday night.  Yes I shop at Whole Foods on a Friday night – it’s a happy place and I’m a sucker for brown rice sushi!

Dinner tonight was baked salmon alongside a veggie-rific sauce of eggplant, mushroom, pepper, tomato, onion and leek served atop a mound of spaghetti squash.

Eating like a food blogger = good eats!

- CJ

The end of a ww era

Last week I cancelled my weightwatchers subscription.

I haven’t followed the plan in at least 6 months and it was stupid to keep paying out the subscription fees.  Instead, I’m focusing on eating whole, healthy foods and good old-fashioned portion control.

Monday mornings will be my weigh-in day and on January 4th I weighed in at 196.2


Overall that means I’ve lost about 24 pounds since the beginning of this journey a year ago. Slowly does it.

This past week I’ve eaten A LOT of vegetables and my meals have typically been oats for breakfast, chicken/pork/beef and stir-fried vegetables for lunch and stew or more stir-fry for dinner.  I’ve also been religiously drinking my water, 8 glasses before I leave work for the day and have been trying out tea as an after dinner ‘snack’ or ‘dessert’ to keep me away from chocolate or other sweet things.

I’ll post again tomorrow with my next Monday morning weigh-in


Saturday, 2 January 2010

Happy New Year

It is New Year’s Eve – 5:10pm as I write this and there are less than 7 hours of 2009 remaining.  Since I have no internet connection here, this will post in 48 hours once I return to civilisation.

2009 has been a strange year. This has been the first year I’ve had job security (as much as anyone can have in the current economic climate) and I haven’t moved house at all.  I have started and finished 2009 living in the same flat and working at the same job, both of which are unusual compared to my previously mobile life.

2009 saw my first trip to Vegas, which was also my first trip with just friends for no other purpose than having fun.  I also did the obligatory wedding travel and spent 10 days back in the US for my college roommate’s wedding.  I got a promotion at work, I broke my wrist, I began running and then trained for and ran a half-marathon. I joined weightwatchers and lost 25lbs, I stopped going to weightwatchers and gained maybe 10 of those back.

2010 I have some very specific goals in mind. I have some general life things I want to accomplish, some specific health and fitness things I’d like to accomplish and some hopes for the next 365 days that are to come.

In 2010 I want to:

Volunteer – I haven’t figured out the specifics, but I want to get back into fundraising or other work with a charity that I care about

Get organised – This is a goal every year and I think I made a definite improvement on this in the past 12 months.  I’d like to keep my flat at a level of cleanliness that I don’t have to ‘apologise for the mess’ whenever someone drops by unannounced.  Of course, I’ll still say it regardless!

Save money – I started this one yesterday when I cut my broadband bill in half.  I want to do a full money makeover and get my bills as low as possible over the next few weeks.  Then I fully intend to cut back on my spending, particularly in terms of food shopping, eat out less especially for lunch and get some money into my savings account by stopping spending on my credit cards.  I aim to only put things on my credit card that can be expensed back to work and this will also ensure that I don’t miss any expenses that could have been claimed back each month.

Reignite a childhood passion – I’m not sure I’ve figured this out yet either but it’s one of the goals suggested by Spark People (as is the one below) and I really like the idea.  Maybe I’ll join my colleagues at their weekly netball game, maybe I’ll dig out my old flute or go camping.

Look forward – I already cut out pictures and articles about places I want to travel to, restaurants I want to eat at, things I want to try or see and now I want to create a dream board.  It will be something that can inspire me day-to-day to move towards a life that is everything I dream of.

Make peace with my grief – My father died 11 years ago and I still cannot talk about him without tears.  I’m pretty sure it’s not typical to still harbour grief this long and this may require counselling, but it’s definitely a place that I’d like to get to.

Expand my cooking skills – I aim to make one new recipe a week to expand my repertoire of go-to dishes. I’d also like to give my kitchen a bit of a makeover (organisation again!)  I’d also like to experiment with different grains, new spices and find kale to try those crispy kale chips I see throughout blogworld!

Health and fitness goals are to:

Try a new sport – I never thought I'd do as well as I’ve done this year with running.  Even though I took an almost 6 week break after the half-marathon and then another hiatus after breaking my wrist I’ve stuck with it for most of the year and have even run twice this week between Christmas and New Years, quite likely the only time I’ve ever worked out in these usually gluttonous days. As soon as my wrist heals I want to try Bikram yoga and have already scoped out the closest yoga studio. I also plan to PR at the same half-marathon race next September.

Look after my skin – I am 27 and still fall to sleep with my makeup on. I want to establish a skin routine and stick to it. 

Eat cleaner – I plan on fully completing Project55 this year and reaching my goal weight finally. As part of this I aim to

  • increase my fruit and vegetable intake to 5-9 portions daily
  • increase my intake of healthy fats
  • increase my protein levels with an aim of 15g at breakfast
  • eat less meat
  • take daily probiotics
  • take a multi-vitamin/supplement daily

2010 is a completely blank canvas – as far as I know there are no moves in my future at work or home, I have no holidays planned.  I don’t mean to sound pessimistic like I have nothing to look forward to but I have no idea what can happen in 2010.  I guess we can only find out!

- CJ