Sunday, March 31, 2013


I have had a hard time with this last birthday. I don't know why. I always thought I would grow old gracefully. For the most part, I have. I loved turning 30. I hated 25. What is wrong with 36? I think I have been spending too much time thinking about where I am, where I thought I would be, etc. My life plan got off track when I was 20, and there are days when I still struggle with it. The biggest issue is my biological clock, and the not knowing what to do about it. My youth is quickly escaping me, and it isn't coming back. What do I have to show for it? Am I doing enough? Because I don't have children to contribute to society, I spend a lot of time thinking about how to give my life more meaning. I am lucky to have a very fulfilling job, and for that I am grateful. However, I know there is more I could be doing to give back. I am on the constant quest to find the perfect program that I want to give my time to.

One thing I have always wanted to do was donate my hair. A lot of organizations won't take color treated hair, and I am going to have to do that eventually. I think I am the only woman I know who doesn't color her hair. Which is pretty awesome for 36, right? So on Thursday, I decided that I needed a makeover to rejuvenate my attitude, and give a little back. It is hair, and it grows back. So I told my stylist to do it! And she chopped off 10" for Locks of Love.  I love my sassy new do. And it takes a lot less time to wash and style. With that and my fat melting, I am going to turn it around in no time and own my 36.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Mmmm....... Grains

I don't even want to talk about my proposed schedule.

Let's instead talk about my slight tendencies towards OCD. I have become obsessed with my diet, which is exactly what I didn't want to happen. I am wasting so much time thinking about food that I can't get anything done, and my stress level continues to climb. I was so stressed out at the beginning of the week, and I justified the fact that I wasn't losing weight on the fact that I haven't been meeting my exercise goals. And then...... Wednesday happened.

I had a Lia Sophia party at my house and made a bunch of appetizers that I, of course, couldn't eat. Fruit skewers, and raw vegetables were ok. But potato skins, tortilla chips (with salsa, guacamole, mango salsa), hummus, tomato/basil/mozzarella bites, and cookies were all out. What was I doing to myself? And then after 2 glasses of wine, also not on the diet, I made the plunge. I didn't go crazy. But I was starving, and I couldn't very well cook myself something different then my guests. I should have done that before anybody got there, but I didn't think that far ahead. I ate 2 potato skins, 4 tomato bites, and counted out my 14 chips for dips. And it was heavenly. And the next morning, I was 1/2 pound lighter. Hmmmmm...... Fluke, right? Thursday there was some leftover guacamole that needed finishing, so once again, I counted out my chips, and polished it off. I added salsa to it as well, so it was a great snack. Friday, I was 1/2 pound lighter. Ok...... So on Friday, I took a friend's kid to the movies and snacked on some popcorn. And I had a couple chips when I got home with the mango salsa. This morning, I am another 1/2 pound lighter. On top of that, I didn't have that mid-afternoon crash that I had been experiencing lately. I felt really good.

I am 7 pounds in, and am basically halfway to my 15 pound weight loss goal. With the help of some grain. Ultimately, I think everyone has to figure out what works for them. I think grains, in limited quantities, may work for me. I am going to make an effort to eat relatively grain-free. No more than once a day, and only a couple days a week It is going to kill me, and I need to lighten up a little a let myself have it.

That being said, the gym has been closed this week to upgrade equipment, floors, and locker rooms. It is open again today, and I have a Hot Yoga class to hit. Later!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Long week

It was a long week. I really need to win the lottery. I have a feeling the remainder of the school year will be continued stress for me, and I have to figure out how to deal with it. I have a history of taking on a little more than I can handle, so I don't know why I am surprised. But I am looking forward to a 4 day work week so I have an extra day this weekend to decompress. Or get stuff done. Whatever.

I like to think I work best under pressure. With my new diet, I am struggling a little bit with focus. I feel great, but I feel like I have ADD. So getting things accomplished this week has been a little bit of a challenge. Which doesn't help my stress level. I can't wait until the last minute on things with my brain in a slight fog. So I need to start scheduling days for certain tasks. And with my new philosophy, I am going to write everything down. I barely function in the mornings, so everything I schedule has to be after work. That being said, my tentative plan is:
  1. Monday - Workout and grading papers
  2. Tuesday - Lesson planning, and go to class
  3. Wednesday - Workout and homework
  4. Thursday - Workout, and either homework or grading or lesson planning, whatever needs done.
  5. Friday - Rest day, and party time
  6. Saturday - Long workout, chores, Precocious Peacock research and development
  7. Sunday - Precocious Peacock R&D, prepare myself for work the next day. 

Somewhere in all of that I have to also pencil in my husband and friends. On a plus side, I did a really good job of eating this week. I planned my lunches well, and learned that I need to be better job at packing snacks. One thing that is really weird about this diet is that when I am hungry I need to eat immediately. There is no warning of oncoming hunger. This can be eliminated if I eat small meals frequently. And besides the general brain fog, I feel great. I lost 6 pounds in 2 weeks, so that isn't too shabby. I will probably only lose about 1 pound a week from here on out, though I am hoping for 2. That will require more workouts, which will also help my stress level. There were only 2 workouts this week, and they were good ones, both over an hour. But my goal is 5. The gym is closed this week, of course. But that shouldn't stop me from working out at home. No excuses.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Inappropriate porch activities

Ah, Spring Break. A week of mostly blissful production from my design studio. Ok, my living room converted into a crafting mecca. That being said, my favorite part of the room are the windows that look onto my front yard. My yard isn't the best on the block. We need more gravel, and there are a few weeds that we both drag our feet on spraying. But we do have the best Mesquite tree in the neighborhood, and the birds love it. Yep. I am a bird nerd. I have a hummingbird feeder hanging in the tree, and a seed feeder on the side of the yard that I can see from the room's other window. The cat goes crazy watching this feeder. It brings the both of us non-stop entertainment that I normally miss out on when I have to go to work.

Because I was able to sit in front of said window all week, I have noticed an increase of doves in my yard. This can only mean one thing - mating season. Oh, yeahhhhhhh..... (cue Marvin Gaye music).  Typically, I find a dove's coo quiet irritating. I am more of a chirp and song kind of girl. But I do think it is sweet that they are monogamous and sometimes mate for life, and often go back to their birth place to mate. We have had a couple nests on our property and we try not to bother them. But as a birder, I can't help but try to obsessively see if there are baby birds around. So when I see more doves around, I know that some of those baby birds are all grown up. I know exactly what they are here for. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, they are in my yard because I have provided the perfect environment for them to to do the nasty. Bow-chick-a-bow-wow!

So I don't know why I was super surprised when I was lazily staring out the window, procrastinating my homework, when I saw 2 doves perched on the porch railing about a millimeter apart. "Aww, look how close they are sitting. That's cute," I thought. They were cleaning their feathers, each others feathers, they hooked their beaks together in a crazy kiss, and then POW! Did I really just see what I think I saw? My head was swimming with emotions. Gross! Cool! I am a perv!

Once I got over my initial shock, I couldn't stop giggling. I immediately went on the interent to see if that is really what happened. And it was. Then I wanted to know how often they did it, how long it took for an egg, etc. Weird? Maybe. But this stuff usually only happens on the Discovery Channel, and someone famous is usually narrating all of this important information.  I learned a bunch of great stuff that many of you would find lame, and uninteresting, that I am sure I will get endlessly teased about. So I won't bother sharing since I know you don't care and can look it up yourself. But I will leave you with this, for your viewing enjoyment:

Friday, March 15, 2013

Crash and burn

Maybe I should be blogging at night. Because yesterday I crashed and burned a little. I took a ride to the grocery store on my bike in the record breaking heat of the day yesterday - 92 degrees (looks like Satan wants to bust out his playground early this year), and around 4:30 I was feeling faint, shaking, blurred vision. I could barely hold a conversation with my husband. And so I ate some tilapia. And it was awesome. I ate it with my dinner smoothie, and it took about an hour to kick in. But I felt much better. And I don't feel the least bit guilty about it.

You can, however, imagine how surprised my husband was when he walked into the kitchen this morning and I was making a smoothie for breakfast, with kale none the less. But today, I start the Paleo diet which is basically only things a caveman would eat: fruits, vegetables, and proteins (lean preferred). Seeds and nuts are ok, legumes are not. This is fine by me. While I will miss black beans, I can't stand the texture of most other legumes and I already hate peas so..... For those of you peanut lovers out there (again, I am allergic), peanuts are a legume so they are also out. Only natural sugar like honey and maple syrup (no, not Aunt Jimima) are in. Alcohol is discouraged, but they say if you have to do it some are better than others. Red wine is recommended. Thank goodness.

So a smoothie with flax seed (one of my favorites), kale, and mixed fruit isn't totally off base. I added almond milk and a little almond butter to the mix, and actually really enjoyed it. I think being another pound lighter this morning and waking up with a little energy helped motivate me to not totatly hate a smoothie. That being said, I am super excited to eat lunch - Baked Eggs in Avocado, minus the toast and bacon, add homemade salsa. I also know that I have book club tonight with my girlfriends, which usually means a lot of eating. I already know the evening menu and want to make sure I plan around it. The biggest challenge I will face this evening will be not over-eating. There is one thing I feel I have to constantly remind myself of is that it is ok to go to bed a little hungry. I also have a great running workout planned today, that I may do this morning if I can get my butt in gear before it is too hot, and a date with the gym at 2 for weights with my husband.

I wish Spring Break would never end.........

Thursday, March 14, 2013


Just last week when one of my co-workers asked me what I was having for lunch, I stuck my tongue out and replied, "Ugh. I am so sick of food."  Nothing will turn that attitude around like a cleanse. 

I am on Day 3 of the Dr. Oz cleanse. I am not a Dr. Oz fan. He isn't telling anyone anything that can't be found on the internet, and he talks to people like the are 5 and stupid. I don't get the hype. But I do get, and am a huge fan of Pinterest, where I found the 3-day cleanse. I have a few cleanses pinned on my Health and Fitness board, and have had success with each of them. There are usually some basic side effects: headaches, fatigue, irritability.  I haven't experienced any of these so far, but Jon certainly is cranky. For a man who eats relatively healthy, he consumes way too much sugar on a daily basis.  Not experiencing any side effects/symtoms of de-toxification makes me think I am not doing things right. Of course, I am not following it to the tee. Could that be a problem? 

I wish that when you read these cleanses they explained what each ingredient does for your body. I have to rely on my nutrition knowledge to make substitutions. Yes, substitutions. Because here is the deal. The first time I did a weight loss program, I beat myself up and was miserable because I was obsessed with the rule book. It almost made me want bad food more because it was ruining my positive relationship with food. Eating is an essential part of every person's days. Not only can we not survive with basic nutrients, but a large part of our socialization occurs around a plate. I firmly believe that self control with portion size is why there is an obesity problem, not as much as the food itself. Because anything can taste good if you know what you like. And I will try just about anything. So I followed the recipes the first day. But then........

I kind of feel like anything on the list of foods to eat on a day is fair game. I really want to like kale. But my lunch smoothie on the first day took 2 hours to choke down before I finally strained it. I miss chewing my food during cleanses, but this was ridiculous. Not to mention, all I could taste was lime, and coconut. Coconut is in my top three most hated foods (behind mushrooms and olives). So on day 2, I eliminated the coconut oil, added 1/4 avocado and used 1/4 lime instead of a half, and put 1 1/2 cups of spinach in instead of kale. I substituted a fat for a fat, and a leafy green for a leafy green. I also didn't have time for a 4th smoothie on the first day because it took me so long to drink the other 3. I also bought fruit blends, and my cup of raspberries or blueberries were a mix of the 2 with blackberries. Same for mango and pineapple (mixed with papaya). It isn't like I was adding a cup of sugar, so what if there was a little extra fruit?  I also didn't think everything needed to be pureed. So I ate my banana and licked my spoonful of almond butter, and ate my avocado -happily.  

Today, all 4 will be consumed. I am hungry today. And today's workout may only be another bike ride to the store because I am a little tired (so maybe I am feeling a side effect). I can't wait to buy food I get to actually eat, and not just digest tomorrow. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bad Habits

I have some really bad habits. "Who doesn't?" I ask myself, during a justification process. But enough is enough. I have worked hard to make some really great changes in my life over the past 5 years in order to be happy. And there is no reason to slack on the little things.

People are always telling me that I have a lot of energy, that I do so many things, blah, blah, blah. The truth is, I am quiet lazy. REALLY lazy. Half of what I do, I do because I can watch TV at the same time. And I am bad at prioritizing because I only do what I want to do. So when time comes for things that I have put off, I stress out, and don't handle things well.  If I had just done those things when I knew they needed to be done....... It is time to abandon the I-work-best-under-pressure theory lifestyle that I have been living.

So some habits are about to change. A little late for a New Year's Resolution, but hey. Better late than never. And by writing things down, I will be more committed to them (or so studies show). So here are some of the things that are about to change around here:

1.  I am going to workout. Seriously, really workout. I belong to a gym, and I go sometimes. The excuse? I am on my feet all day. The reality - tough it out, Girl! I completed 2 more half marathons, one I half trained for, and the most recent, not at all. It motivated me to move again. Fo real. Yesterday, I was at the gym, some running, some weights. Today a bike ride to the grocery store, an aerobic house clean (dancing with my iPod on through every scrub got my heart rate up). Tomorrow, the gym? A run? Some Nike FIt Club (app)? Who knows. But it will happen.

2. I am going to change my diet. I am getting fat again. Not Biggest Loser fat, but out-of-my-comfort-zone-fat. I lost 35 pounds once. When I met my husband, I was only 110 pounds, which is ridiculously thin. And I have no problem throwing out there that at my heaviest I was 163 pounds, and a size 14. Well 12, but I should have been a 14 because those size 12 pants were bursting at the seams. I don't want that again. While I am ok with my size 8, I know my frame can handle a little less, and I have gained 7 pounds since school started. My ultimate goal: 15 pounds (to 125) or a size 6. I am sure they go hand in hand. Ultimately, it is about health. And while I don't want to be my pre-married weight, I could definitely shed some fat.  So it is time for me to get back onto My Fitness Pal app, and track things again, right after I finish a cleanse. I am also going on the Paleo diet. This means no dairy, grains, or sugar. So I will have to plan ahead, and not be so lazy. But don't worry girls, red wine is Paleo-approved!

3. Follow a budget. Sigh. The one hot spot in out marriage. I know this is my fault. So it is time to get serious. has a great program for budgeting. And I plan on being all over it. I am sure you will hear more about this, as I like to over dramatize a lot........

4. Less TV. I am hoping to convince Jon to ditch the cable and get Apple TV, Hulu Plus, and renew our NetFlix. This will save us money, and force me to watch what I want, not just have it on and channel surf.

5. Less time on the computer. I don't really know how realistic this is, trying to start a business and all. But I could spend more quality time on the computer, and less farting around. Damn Facebook and Pinterest. Time to back off a little and use the internet for quality research and networking. It will be a lot easier to do if number 4 (above) is happening.

6. Blog again. Every night I write a blog post in my head. And I never seem to do it. Even with all the time I spend in front of my computer. For my own sanity, I need to type things out.

7. Get my side business going. This could be an entire book. I'll just say there is a lot in the works, and this could be big, or it could be a small side income. Depending on how much effort I am going to make. And I am excited about it. That says a lot. One day at a time with this one......

Now that I have thrown it out there, I am counting on you all to keep me honest. Time to change some of my bad habits into good ones.