Sunday night musings

Lots of great things happened this weekend 🙂

First of all; I have not worked this weekend 🙂 A first in the last 6 months or so. I am still tired but my spirit is high, so all is well 🙂

Second of all; I baked my first corn bread and it was delicious – that is so exciting! I can bake it of my guest as well 🙂 I feel like my baking and cooking skills are significantly improved by this dish… I love this feeling 🙂

Third of all; I thrifted today after a long time. I spent hours going through everything with excitement. I tried on maybe 30 pieces and bought three; one blouse that I was hoping to find (I have its exact same copy, which I love, love, love! I was hoping that I could find a similar one so that I could wear it for a longer time. Today my dreams came true 🙂 ). I also bought two good-looking cardigans that i am sure I will wear with love. A very good day indeed 🙂 I plan to thrift next weekend too.

Fourth of all; I cooked multiple meals for me this weekend, which is awesome. I usually would refrain from cooking or cook one meal to last 2-3 days, but not this weekend. How lovely is this? 🙂

Fifth of all; I found a great deal on my favorite french press and ordered it 🙂 It is expected within a week or so and I could not be happier 🙂 I literally got it 75% off.. WOW! It is good that I have waited so long. Jack pot!

Sixth of all; I re-started push ups and back exercises to help ease my back problems and strengthen my arms, chest, and abs. My muscles are aching – that means my exercises are effective. I am happy with this!! 🙂

Seventh of all; yesterday I used loyalty points for a large amount of shopping (like a hundred bucks) to purchase personal care and cleaning products. I found all items I was looking for and I only bought things that I will use or need. So every point/dime was used for a good purpose and no waste! 🙂

Eighth of all; I am feeling good and lucky with all these positive experiences and this makes me relaxed and happier 🙂

I could not ask for a better weekend!

Have a great Sunday night everyone 🙂

 

 

 

 

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your body let you know when you need to slow down

My tummy was aching yesterday and this morning, and I have a terrible headache since morning. I have eaten lots of carbs and drank too much soft drinks, and my face is puffy and I feel lethargic. I believe my blood tension is also high. 

Where am I going like this?

I may not have managed my work-related stress effectively so far, but I think it is time that I start doing this.

Action item 1. Stop thinking work at nights. Watch the X-files instead. Give my mind a break.

Action item 2: Breathe. Deep breaths. Continuously. For 5 minutes or longer. Try time to time.

Action item 3: Stop drinking soft drinks. Replace it with water. Drink milk.

Action item 4: Get out of the house.

Action item 5: Eat better. No carbs for some time. Eat delicious veggies and fruits for a change. They energize me.

Action item 6: Do not work this weekend, if I can.

Action item 7: Work at the office tomorrow, not at home. Get some human interaction. Get away from isolation.

Action item 8: Write down the things that go well.

Action item 9: Cuddle with a nice book.

Action item 10: Watch these lovely creatures and put on a smile 🙂

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The third day of the “work” staycation

Today went really well in terms of the work I have been trying to fix. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel! 🙂

Honestly the stress levels I have right now is huge. I want to take things one thing at a time, but how do we achieve that when there are multiple things at hand? Challenge… I need more than ever my logical self and sound mental state.

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Overall, though I am feeling calmer and more optimistic after finding solutions to the work at my hand. Until next time…..

I have not dwelled on my Saturday routine today, except I prepared sourdough to bake tomorrow. For some reason I do think that my home is clean enough and the laundry can wait till I run out of clean items (boy, did that ever happen to me? Never…). I did not go pick up milk, either. Luckily I have some at home and my kefir granules are all fed and happy. 

Tomorrow is another day and another work marathon, but I must take it as it is. While work-list is stressing me too much, I also find the satisfaction in taking care of them. Those times require complete focus and I do have it for now. But i am feeling like having no human contact and confined to home for extended periods of time will take its toll on me. So I am likely to go to office and do some work there on Monday. Talking about “work” staycation.

I wonder why I always loved my line of work but could not handle stress very well. I know my remedy is cardio exercise. It clears up the fogs and illusions in my mind like a wizard’s rod. Terrific and electrifying truth. So electrifying that I cannot get myself up and do some hiking. How great I would feel! So why is this laziness and reluctance? 

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Am I funny or what?

🙂

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Making fun of myself always feels great 🙂

Have a great Saturday everyone!

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random thoughts

After 6 months or so, I did some back and ab exercises yesterday and today I feel like my big belly has shrunk! 🙂

I am serious 🙂

I know I did not lose whatever fat I have but I must admit that the ab muscles do an awesome job keeping things in place and firm once they are active. 

My belly is all tucked up very nicely and my posture is a lot better. I even feel taller.

You know when the abs are strong and supportive, these are all expected to occur.

I used to be physically very active and quite muscular in the past, prior to starting my current job. I know that muscles have their own memory and they are quite forgiving. So if you want to remind your muscles how great they can be, go ahead, take a walk, lift a weight, or just find a way to use them. You will know the difference.

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I have had a good day today. I got up at around 9 am, did the laundry, talked to family, and prepared an interesting dough (sourdough with kefir – cannot wait to see how it will turn out tomorrow).

I wanted to get out and buy some sewing notions but boy, do we have a rainy day? It is raining cat and dog, and I hope tomorrow we will have a better day. On the other hand, I am grateful that it rains – my yard and seeds/plants needed it. Had I mentioned that I have potato plants? Yes, I do and this is such a fantastic feeling! 

Anyways; back to sewing. Sewing relaxes me, even thought I am not sewing frequently or with confidence. Nevertheless this afternoon I felt like I needed to sew (that is a strange feeling; it is like the need to eat… the need to sew… strange but true…), so I have sewn two simple pieces of clothes to be placed over my washer and dryer. They are cute but can be cuter if I can find nice ribbons (which I hope to find tomorrow). They will keep the dust away from my machines and also make that area look a little bit homey. My washer and dryer are in small room with boiler, ventilator, and garbage bin, so this area does not traditionally look or feel nice at all. But after these cloths it feels a little bit better. I also am interested in sewing a nice cover for the garbage bin – maybe with a flowery fabric so that it may look and feel better too! Many can find this idea weird, but I have been meaning to do this for some time and I believe that it is gonna look cute, so I am all for it 🙂

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walking, gardening, and good night sleep

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I am beat!! 🙂 I walked and went around on foot for 4 hours yesterday evening. When I returned home, my feet and legs were aching and they kept doing so the rest of the day. Thank goodness, in the morning everything was back to normal 🙂

I wondered whether it was like this when I was young. I could not remember for sure. I know I would be tired sometime, but it would be because of working/walking/standing whole day? I had so much energy when I was young that I would not be surprised with this.

Anyways, the physical exercise and activity continued today too. I decided that it was the right time to fix the yard. The back of my yard has uneven surface, which bothers me. I tried to level it a little bit in the past, but there is still so much to do. So I decided today was a good time to have this as a project.

Boy… Ok… Long story short; I probably will have to work on that part of the yard 3-4 more weekends. I could continue after 1 hour of digging, carrying soil around, collecting glass and plastic pieces (previous owners did not do a great job with keeping that yard healthy), but at that point my back was aching from forward folds and all the stuff carried around, so I decided to stop for today. 

The work I have done today is not a huge one, but it is a good start. I think by taking it easy I will be able to handle this without taxing my body and mind. I am really looking forward to finishing it and planting seeds and flowers around. And I am glad that I did not wait till end of May when we usually start working in the gardens 🙂 I feel like I am on time, even early to work on the yard, so I feel relax rather than stressed about it.

One other plan of mine is to have mulch and place it around the trees. There is also a part of the yard that I want to cover with it; this section has currently small rocks/stones to cover it and every year more and more wild plants grow in it. I hope that by mulch I can make it look a little bit better and also help get rid of unwanted plants. Good plan 🙂

It is great to have projects and work on them, and it is great to be out there with nature. I am also happy about the physical exercise I have got. I am sure I am looking at a sound sleep tonite and many weekends to come ! 🙂

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thrift store treasures

 I have not written in a while, have I? I feel like I must write, write, write 🙂

A couple of things;

1) I continue to get up at around 7 am… Never in my life have I done this consistently. and with no good reason, like a flight or something.

Is it the end of winter? Daylight? Or plain old age?

Huh… My friends, they say as we age we need less sleep. I guess I am experiencing this. It is a fact! 🙂

2) I made an effort to take the bus this week, rather than the cab. It is working. I still do not feel like walking because of low morale, but I will re-start this sometime in the future. It is gonna feel great – I know it 🙂

3) I have walked two hours again today to a shopping mall. This is, I believe, the 3rd Saturday straight that I have done this. I checked two thrift stores and found myself a nice blouse – just for 4 bucks 🙂 this is the 3rd blouse I have got in the last three weeks from thrift stores that excites me like this 🙂 It is a beautiful thing and I love it 🙂 I tried around 15 other blouses – one of them was really awesome! I wish it was a little bit larger 🙂 Oh, well. next time 🙂

IMG_0848

I found it very interesting today that I am getting more and more comfortable with the idea of buying clothes from thrift stores. I previously had bought books, sewing notions/fabric, purses, a jacket or two, and one or two shirts over many years. What can I say? Sometimes I can find really amazing stuff and they are very affordable. I also help others by shopping at these stores, I would like to think. So I should feel okay. But, see there is something still bothering me about shopping there. I guess I am worried about people recognizing me and then talking behind me. After all I am not poor, and I can afford new clothes, and I would not like to be called “cheap”. But I must admit it is so much fun to go around the thrift stores, look at all the interesting stuff (they have more diverse items than regular store, don’t they?), and find a lovely piece that I can love and use 🙂 

On a separate note, walking was very easy and fun today. I am really grateful for doing this. It is an healthy activity and it makes me realize how fine my body and stamina is. Especially when I compare this ability to before when I had low energy for years and would not want to walk even 5 minutes… To be able to do this now feels awesome 🙂

random thoughts

I cannot believe we have reached to the end of February!

This year has been passing quite fast. It is hard for me to believe that it has been two months since the holidays when I had 2 weeks off.. Wow! Two months…. It feels like yesterday!

The nice thing is that the three months of our winter has passed. The Spring will be here in May – that feels good 🙂

We will also have the daylight saving times reversed sometime in March – that means we are looking for lighter and brighter days ahead. That also feels good 🙂

This winter has been harsh here in Canada, my friends. We have had a lot of snow days 🙂 It has also been interesting: for the first time in my life here (around 8-9 years), I have walked in the morning to the office from home in winter. I think I have done that in January first and, now, whenever I can, I am aiming to do so (like today)…

What a sense of freedom it gives me and what a great way to relax my mind and work my body. I am awed that I am not afraid of ice or falling this winter (which was the reason that stopped me from walking in winter at the first place).. Change is always possible I guess….

That experience also tells me to question our assumptions and decisions, even though they are comfortable. Perhaps they can be re-assessed and reversed, and the new normal would turn out to be exciting as my winter walking adventure 🙂

Nowadays I particularly feel like walking. I blame partly boredom and partly the fact that I get up early, and as such, end up with having lots of time at my hand 🙂 I walked last Saturday and Sunday around 2 hours each day. And I am planning to walk similarly this weekend. I hope I can make this. My plan is to walk to the shopping mall on Saturday, just to grab a couple of tubes of yogurt 🙂 Let’s see whether the weather will be permissive (if it is raining or heavily snowing, I will not certainly do this 🙂 ) 

Since I walked this morning and did not take the bus, today was also a day that I spent nothing! 🙂

Is that not awesome 🙂

I never thought that that would be possible, but now I can see that I was not thinking careful enough – it certainly is possible. Anyone can do this “no spending days”. Give it a try, my friends, and let us know how you feel. It certainly feels weird and sweet at the same time 🙂 🙂 

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push-up surprise

I sometime surprise myself….

Very amusing I can be 🙂

Well, I have been in a great mood this past week (mostly because of the motivation coming out of losing weight lately and steadily) and I even started doing some push ups. It has been years that I have had the energy to try them (thank you again vit D and iron supplements…). My maximum number of push ups done all at one round was 55. This was something like 10 years ago. Sure, I have started small this time; with 6, then 8 the next day and now 10 push ups today. Well, you know what? I do not think I will go up 55 as before, but I sure will go high. I am in love.. They are so good for building the arms and chest as well as the back and abs. I am very excited 🙂

There is something so powerful about feeling the energy and strength I once had. I may be getting old, but I am not that old.

Have a great weekend everyone 🙂

random thoughts

There is not much to say, except that:

1. I wanted to walk in the morning

2. I walked from home to office in the morning

3. It was an easy and enjoyable walk, which made me excited

4. My body got warm as a result of walking and sweated a little bit (for some reason I like sweating by physical activity – I guess it tells me I worked my body a little bit more than regular. No worries – I did not stink)

5. I felt happy, relaxed, and excited during the morning (which is priceless, you know well)

6. I worked well with my team members; I am not able to finish the document I was supposed to this week, but hey, I will take it as it is

7. I walked in the evening to home from office, despite a thin rain (great that I did not chicken out and decide to take the bus/cab rather than walking)

8. I have had a healthy dinner, with salad and oven-cooked chicken

9. I want to walk tomorrow morning, too, weather permitting

10. Overall, I feel excited and happy about my energy levels in the morning, and being able to do this useful exercise for my body and my mind.

🙂

 

 

random thoughts

It is a bright day, albeit with a chilly temperature. Is Spring finally coming, or is it the effect of the daylight saving  adjustment done a week ago? I know our winter is not over yet, but I always welcome open sky and sunlight that have positive effects on me.

For some reason, I missed the bus this morning- it just drove through the street right before I could catch it. This is the first time that I missed it so close. While I was pissed a little bit and suspicious that the clock in my bedroom must have been slow, it now looks like the clock is just fine and it is a mystery what happened in the morning that caused me to lose time and miss the bus.

Seeing the bus gone and all, I started walking to work this morning. It was chilly, the route is boring to look at, yet I walked. It has had a therapeutic effect of course; each time I walk and arrive my office with a little sweat, I feel so good till late afternoon. The hard job of wishing to walk in the morning and getting bored while looking at the boring scenery is something, and then feeling accomplished and good about myself after walking is something else. What a dilemma.

I now try to convince myself to try walking every morning as long as the weather is permissive. It makes me feel good; it is good for my physical health; it is good for my bones, muscles, lungs, heart, and circulatory system as well as my legs; it is good for my mental health; it makes me feel like I accomplish something important; it makes me feel like I am taking more control of my health and life-style; and it makes me feel proud as together with my afternoon walk, a total of 1 hour of walk/ workday is in fact amazing.

It also gives me freedom. Freedom to wake up anytime I want. The bus operates every 30 min so I need to arrange my morning according to its schedule. but now, I can get up anytime and start walking. No more waiting for the bus….

How about that?

Is it not awesome that we can find so many positives of a simple activity like walking?

I hope you too have many, many things in your daily life that make you feel happy, excited, accomplished, and grateful.

 

 

today’s bits

A lovely day, albeit with lots of snow in front of the house, on the streets, and anywhere else I can see.

Yet, I waited for the bus this morning in an open bus stop; I should say rather 1 meter away from it right on the road (the sidewalk was completely occupied by a ~30 cm high snow – no way that I am immersing myself into that mess). Thank goodness there was not a lot of traffic and even though the bus was late like 15 minutes, I managed to be safe and get on the bus.

In my old days, I would automatically take the cab, especially in this kind of weather. Now, I am happy to take the bus. What an adventure for me…

The fact is that nowadays I am getting up with more energy and with a positive mind set in the morning, which make me relaxed, less stressed, and willing to catch the bus.

I am not sure what I owe this nice change in my life. I thought about three things;

1. I may have more energy now as it turns out the iron supplements I was prescribed to 3 months ago are working well and my iron levels are within normal levels. yay! I will continue for another 6 months, this time with one pill every other day. I am grateful that my body is responding well to the supplement. Thank you, thank you, thank you 🙂

2. The yoga classes that I started at the beginning of January have a very positive effect on my body as well as my mind and spirit. I am more centered, relax, and in tune and connected with my body, and I feel overall very good. These positive feelings may be promoting better mood in the morning.

3. And of course, I have a much higher motivation now to keep up with my budget and protect my money by taking the bus but not the cab in the mornings. So far this year it has been going really well (well, it has been just 3 weeks, so I cannot generalize it yet; but I am very grateful and excited about my reduced spending so far and increased ability to save money – hope that will continue like that..). Even during the day at the office, sometime I find myself remembering how well I have done by taking the bus rather than the cab and that makes me feel good 🙂

For someone who suffered from stress and lack of energy the majority of the time, especially in the last 7 years, the experience I have had lately is so precious, so happiness-creating for me.

I am very grateful for these developments in my life and happy to share with my friends here 🙂

 

today’s bits

We ended up having 20-30 cms of snow overnight. While the street was very quiet in the morning and the cars were remaining where they were, to my surprise it was not a snow day, and off to work I went 🙂

It was a good day, full of nice coffee, conversations, productive meeting, and some work done. I left the office afternoon for an off-site meeting and I managed to walk in the streets. I could not help bu notice the snow banks along the streets. The height of the snow banks time to time gets quite high and I keep wonder why the city does not try to find a way to remove the banks… For us, it is a regular sight in winter; they are white and fluffy at the beginning and after a while get harder and turn their colour to gray… Stuck with all the dirt they can get in the streets – this is when it becomes a particularly annoying sight.

My prediction is that these snow banks will remain until the end of march, refreshed by new snow that we expect in the coming weeks. Unless we are hit by extensive rain of course.

Nevertheless, it is good that we passed mid January now. While our winter well spreads across April and sometime May as well, I know over time its effects will lessen. In April we should get more sunlight and in May the nature starts to bloom…. what an exciting feeling it is to see that – cannot wait 🙂

I am re-starting my yoga classes this evening; I hope to relax both my mind and my body. Especially my back, which has been aching in the last one week. I will take it easy for a couple of sessions and after that I hope to have a stronger feeling back. I am looking forward to that. I am also supposed to start physiotherapy sometime; it should also help me to prevent further damage to my lower back.

One thing I have not developed a solution for is the way I sit at home. Since I love to sit on my couch, I hardly have a straight posture. I may want to move on the recliner again, which has a stronger support for my back and shoulders. Without this kind of improvements, I cannot expect to help my own back by attending yoga or physiotherapy sessions. That would be silly really. So I better start being wise about my posture and give it a priority.

That is what it is so far. I wish everyone a great, relaxing, and lovely evening and night 🙂

ending healthy – life style journal

I have not posted my healthy – life style journal yesterday.

The fact that I am tired of not doing as good as I wish to do. Plus, in the last 3 months while I have eaten better, I did not lose much of a weight. So noting what I have eaten or how much walking I have done per day does not satisfy me anymore.

I am ending it for now. I may start later sometime should I see a benefit in it.

Thank you all of those who commented and supported me through this journey. You guys helped me keep going 🙂

Amazingly, I feel free, too.

Interesting….

Free from drafting it everyday, picking up multiple tags and categories, cluttering my blog with these daily posts…

I have more interesting stuff to write about.

Now, I will go enjoy my newly found freedom.

yay, snow day! :)

It is a snow day today; what they predicted yesterday was true. We have around 15 cm of snow with horrible road conditions.

I did not go to work as my workplace is closed for the day; do not we like our employers that help protect ourselves?

Snow day means a number of things for me;

1. I have to shovel! Boy, give me a break; for months now we will be shoveling. There is no place to shovel the snow on the sidewalk along my house; so the sidewalks are now under the snow banks. I hope not to get a penalty for this. While it bothers me, I also see shoveling a great way to exercise 🙂

2. I gotta try a different cafe close to my home, as the usual ones are closed. This cafe is a noisy and crowded one, which does not give me enough serenity to work in. Yet, their coffee is the best – so I cannot complain 🙂

3. I gotta work; there has been no snow day that I did not need to work. A lot actually. I do not know why that happens.But, as usual I am happy to take care of stuff, while also thinking that this evening I can relax by blogging, surfing the net, or by watching the TV.

So all is well on my side on this snow day 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Dec 2, 2015

Well, at least I managed to snack better at noon and to cook for myself for dinner today 🙂

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar; many cups of it

noon: 1 can of fish, 1 hard boiled egg

dinner: green lentil meal with 3 slices of bread. I also ate many small and toasted breads commercially available. they are crunchy and great with soup, but I also love eating them as they are. This product will be a challenge to manage…

late-night snack (to be added later):

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron at noon, vit D and calcium after dinner

stretching: 5 min (yay!)

healthy life – style journal, Nov 28, 2015

Well, one of these days again where I have indulged into food.

On the positive side, I walked for 30 min in the morning – that feels good 🙂

breakfast: coffee with cream and sugar, one bagel toasted with butter

late lunch: beef and potato meal, 3 slices of bread. 1 banana

dinner: cucumber and cheese, which was very refreshing. Then fried cheese and two eggs as a treat, together with 3 slices of bread. I have over-done this one, but it was so yummy. Nevertheless I am noting my resentment and hoping this high-calorie and fatty meal will not show up on my diet for a long time.

late-night snack (to be added later):

exercise: 30 min walk in the morning

supplements: iron at noon, vit D and calcium after dinner

stretching: none

 

 

healthy life – style journal, Nov 26, 2015

Well, not too much of a progress today. Lots of coffee and cafeteria food enjoyed with colleagues. I am okay with that.

breakfast: coffee with creamer and sugar

lunch: coffee with creamer and brown sugar, beef and cheese sandwich

late-afternoon snack: another coffee and 1 tea biscuit

dinner: green salad and 6 pieces of breaded fish pieces (frozen, cooked in oven) with lemon juice. This is my all time favorite dinner.

late night snack (added later): 2 hard boiled egg, a small can of black beans with olive oil

exercise: 10 min in the morning.

supplements: iron at noon, calcium and VitD taken later tonight

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 25, 2015

Another day; great in terms of the healthy food I consume. My irregular eating habit still continues, though.

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: 1 hard-boiled egg

dinner: green lentil and veggie meal (yummy!); two bowls; mango-berry juice

late night snack (added later):  another bowl of the lentil meal, 50 grms of cheese

exercise: 10 min walking in the morning, 30 min walking in the afternoon

supplements: iron at noon, vit D and calcium to be taken later tonite

healthy – life style journal, Nov 24, 2015

a great day 🙂 I am loving it so far.

breakfast: 1 coffee with creamer and brown sugar. I had my breakfast with me but forgotten to eat it in the morning.

lunch: 2 hard-boiled eggs, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

dinner: I prepared an interesting meal; I first cooked minced beef in tomato sauce and topped with cut green onion. Also I cooked instant oats with turmeric in a pot. Then in a bowl I mixed both of them. Delicious and filling meal. Very interesting, too 🙂

late-night snack (added later): another bowl of the meal above, mango-berry juice

exercise: the highlight of the day; walked 30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon. Yahoo :))

supplements: iron at noon, no vit D and calcium supplement yet.

stretching(updated later): 5 min of stretching, mostly to relive my back pain

healthy life – style journal, Nov 23, 2015

Well… well… well.. for some reason I run out of appetite again 🙂

breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: 1 hard boiled egg, tea

dinner: 1 bowl of red lentil soup (this has been the 4th night I have had this soup – I am grateful for food, but I guess I will just freeze the remaining portion for later consumption. I also learnt that I should use less lentil than before to do this soup in the right amount..), 3 slices of bread, 30 grms of cheese

late-night snack (to be added later):

exercise: 10 min walking in the morning, 30 min walking in the afternoon

supplements: iron after the dinner, no calcium or vit D supplement today

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 22, 2015

better choices – feeling good 🙂

breakfast: 1 bagel with butter, coffee with cream and brown sugar. I must confess I wanted to have a second bagel, but made an effort to not. It paid off.

lunch: veggie meal; 2 slices of whole wheat bread

dinner: roasted egg plants served with yogurt, olive oil, and chilly pepper. This dish was something I have done to limit my food waste; I had eggplants that were about to go bad. Cut them out, sprinkle with olive oil, two cloves of garlic and salt;  bake in oven at 350 C for 30 min. Serve with yogurt on top, olive oil, and chilly pepper. Yum 🙂

late night-snack: veggie based meals during the day were not enough – I got hungry. So I also ate two hard-boiled eggs with 3 slices of whole wheat bread.

Later: 1 pear, 3 slices of bread with butter and honey, and 1 can of corn

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning

supplements: iron at noon, vit D and calcium after dinner

stretching: none

 

healthy life – style journal, Nov 21, 2015

I have not noted my healthy – life style activities (or frustrations) yesterday; here they are 🙂

breakfast: 2 bagels with butter,, coffee with cream and brown sugar

lunch: 2 bowls of red lentil soup with 3 slices of whole wheat bread

dinner: this is where I have done too much 🙂 fried minced beef with onion and egg; this is a practical meal but usually has a high fat content; 4 slices of whole wheat bread; 1 pear

late-night snack: 1 tall glass of milk, 1 pear

exercise: none

supplements: iron at noon; did not take the vit D and calcium supplement

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 20, 2015

Almost forgotten to write this one post 🙂

Well, some good choices made today. Overall, not a bad day at all 🙂

breakfast: food forgotten at home as usual; coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: 1 pear

dinner: 2 bowls of red lentil, onion, carrot, and turmeric soup with 5 slices of whole wheat bread, raw leek, 1 hard-boiled egg.

I am lucky that I have a blender that made this soup possible. Do you know what else I am planning? To have bean (after boiling slightly; not necessarily to much) and veggie patties using the blender. Any food, even scratch food, can be mixed and consumed this way. technology is awesome. I have so much dry food in my pantry that have been waiting to be consumed; I finally found a way to eat them and I am excited about this 🙂

late-night snack (to be added later):

exercise: 30 min walking in the morning and then 30 min in the afternoon. Yahoo!! felt good at both times. I even took a longer path this afternoon. I am in love with myself for the walkings today 🙂

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon, calcium and vit D (recommended) after dinner

stretching: none

the mental judo

I am perhaps famous with my “mental judo fights”, where I keep thinking, paining, putting and effort, and struggling about the same issue over and over.

It is not fun; fighting with your own thoughts or choices. Wanting something, trying, putting an effort, and then not being able to continue, be effective, or achieve. Having frustration and lack of confidence as a result. Feeling bad about yourself.

The struggle is usually a habit that I need to change for the better. Take my healthy eating and losing weight saga, for example.

Weight: For my entire life, I struggled with my weight. It is true that in the last 6-7 years, I have gained a lot of weight; 35 pounds to be exact. There are reasons that I can count for this; lack of physical exercise, lack of time, stress, and eating usually unhealthy food or snacks among the top ones.

Walking: When it is combined with the rainy/snowy weather, walking becomes a challenge. I am more comfortable walking in the afternoon than in the morning. When I walk in the morning, it is always a great feeling. But my challenge is to start walking – taking my feet out of the house. When I start it, I enjoy it. When I can walk it, I enjoy it. My day at the office starts better and I feel proud of myself. That is when it is not raining or snowing of course. So I accept the fact that during winter and the majority of the spring, I may not walk in the mornings. Ok.

Gym: Walking is of course not the only exercise I can get. I have gyms at my work place. One of them is quite suitable for me as it is pay per visit and quite an affordable one. I was planning to start it late September; alas 2 months have elapsed and I still did not start it. What am I (not) doing?

Weight loss: In terms of weight loss, I thought by limiting the carbs (which is also good for lowering my blood sugar levels) and by eating better food, like raw veggies, salads, and fruits like apples and pears, I would lose my extra weight….. I thought so because in the past I was able to lose weight. It turns out that is not the case anymore – I have been on a healthy eating journey since September. While I have lost 8 pounds till early October, after that I simply gained them back. It is not working. To lose my weight, I must try another way….

Having these two items, exercising and losing weight, on my “to-d0-list” has been tiring.

It has been years………

I WANT to achieve these.

But there is always something more important to take care or channelize my energy into. There is work, there are issues in life, at work…. There is always A LOT for me to handle. Whether or not they are excuses, I do not know.

What I know is that today I have been thinking; how would I feel if they were gone from my list?

Healthier? Yes

More accomplished? Yes

Freer? Absolutely Yes! 

I today imagined how my mind would be freed of these concerns, attempts, struggles, and issues.

I imagined how energizing this would have been.

I am not naive enough to think that my mind would not fill up with new mental judo activities. And that is okay; at least they would be new, not stagnated ones like these two issues.

Wish me luck as I start planning and implementing new strategies to tackle my weight loss and exercise goals.

 

 

 

healthy life – style journal, Nov 19, 2015

So-so day..

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar. Lots of coffee..

lunch: one can of fish, coffee

dinner: yogurt with cucumber and olive oil dip, raw leek with 6 slices of whole wheat bread

late night snack (to be added later):

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron (prescribed) in the afternoon, vit D and calcium later at night.

stretching: 10 min in the evening

 

 

healthy life – style journal, Nov 18, 2015

After eating all the great(!) left overs from the dinner at the weekend and ranting about my inability to keep up with healthy eating habit, I am glad to say that I am returning back to eating better today.

breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: beefy eggplant meal with 2 slices of whole wheat bread

dinner: pasta with yogurt and cucumber; 2 apples

late-night snack (added later): 30 grms of cheese, 5 table spoon of honey. For some reason, I am craving for sweets. I must say it is likley because of the high carb eating lately. got ta get back to limited carb eating..

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron at noon; calcium and Vit D after dinner

stretching: 5 min! Yay! I did stretch today. Listening to relaxing music and relaxing my muscles, even for a short time like 5 min, felt awesome 🙂 I am glad I have kept this category in my posts so far; it helps me to remember this one activity

healthy life – style journal, Nov 17, 2015

I am in a state of self-pampering and lifting off the imposed restrictions nowadays. This directly reflects on my diet and behavior – I do not care of eating better or not eating fatty food at all. I do not.

I am rebelling.

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: two cans of fish

late-lunch: 3 slices of whole wheat bread and beefy eggplant meal

dinner: 3 slices of whole wheat bread and beefy eggplant meal; chocolate

late-night snack (added later): yogurt, cucumber, and olive oil dip with whole wheat bread

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron at noon, vit D and calcium after dinner

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 16, 2015

A regular work day with missed breakfasts and lunch… Oh, well.. You know my eating habits. One day, my friends, one day, I hope to convert them for a better and healthier type.

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: 20 grms of train mix (I am lucky to find this; otherwise I had nothing to eat)

breakfast: 1/2 cucumber, 2 bowls of red lentil soup, 2 slices of whole wheat bread

late-night snack (added later): bread, walnuts, chocolate

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron (none yet: i forgot to take it today too), vitamin D and calcium (after the dinner)

stretching: none

 

healthy life style journal – Nov 14, 2015

I had friends over for dinner; that meant cooking a lot during the day. Also eating and enjoying it with great company 🙂

breakfast: 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

lunch: 30 grms of cheese, 1/2 slice of bread

dinner: lettuce salad with avocado and olive oil; red lentil soup, pasta with cheese, a slice of pumpkin pie, and ice cream

late nigh snack: none

exercise; 5 min walking in the morning

stretching: none

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon; no opportunity to take the vit D and calcium supplement today

healthy life – style journal, Nov 13, 2015

Not a bad day.

breakfast: breakfast forgotten at home again; coffee with creamer and brown sugar only

lunch: none (I was working; what an excuse…)

dinner: carrot, onion, and meatball meal with a dash of black bean sauce and 3 slices of whole wheat bread. Later for some reason I craved for raw leek, which was yummy 🙂

There is something nice about the raw food that my body likes. Any ideas what it is? I am curious…..

late night snack (to be added later):

exercise: 30 min walk in the morning and in the afternoon 🙂 well done; very relaxing activity. My mental clarity increases as I walk. It also relaxes me. The weather is just perfect; not too cold, not too dump. I wonder how long I will be able to have the pleasure of walking.

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon, calcium and Vit D (recommended) after dinner

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 12, 2015

My disinterest in food continues.

breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg (yay for not forgetting it), coffee with creamer and brown sugar. Lots of it.

lunch: 50 grms of trail mix

dinner: 1 tomato, 1/2 large cucumber, 100 grms of cheese, 1 avocado, 2 slices of whole wheat bread

late night snack (added later): 2 glasses of milk, 1 apple, 2 slices of bread

exercise: the highlight of the day! walked 30 min in the morning and then another 30 min in the afternoon 🙂 Yay!! 🙂

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon, vit D and calcium (recommended) after dinner

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 11, 2015

Another day with irregular eating; both eating carbs and then not.

I am not as careful about carbs as at the start of this journey; I keep telling myself it is because I am not afraid of carbs anymore, I tend to eat other healthy food almost everyday, and even though I slip back to carbs, I keep bringing myself back to the protein and raw veggie side.

I also must add that my weight does not change much. If I really want to lose weight, I will have to do something more drastic in the coming days/weeks.

I once had tried eating small meals 6 times a day; it does work, dear friend, yet I really have no time to implement it. I can hardly remember taking my breakfast (which is usually 1 hard-boiled egg); how am I supposed to remember to pack with me not only this but also lunch and snacks?

Every single day, I must add.

I may be a hopeless lazy person. Or someone who does not really care.

Why can I not care about my weight loss? I am over-weight (obese I guess, based on BMI scales). I have near border blood sugar levels that keep scaring me time to time, I am getting older and as such my metabolic rate is getting lower (i.e. I am likely to gain more weight with the same amount of calorie consumption).

I kinda think it is because there are so many things in life that I must face and work on, I choose the ones that are either manageable or at the top of the priority list.

If my weight loss is not on the top of the priority list, for very good health reasons, then that means I am doing something really wrong.

My health should be on top of my priority list. This healthy life journey should be on top of my priority list….

breakfast: 2 bagels with butter, 1 cup of cream with brown sugar and cream. I met with my friends at this beautiful Remembrance Day holiday. This was my breakfast at that meeting.

lunch: none (I was working at home)

dinner: half green cabbage half lettuce salad with olive oil; 6 pieces of oven-baked frozen and battered fish pieces.

I forced myself to eat these fish; after 1 piece I was done. You may think I am over-eating, but no. The total calories I consume for today is not at the healthy level. That is why I ate the other pieces.

My lack of appetite is continuing to worry me. I usually would have a big appetite in the evenings. Not anymore. Together with my iron deficiency, I am scared that this points to a sickness…

late-night snacks (to be added later):

exercise: 15 min walk in the morning to the cafe I met with my friends.

supplements: iron ([prescribed) at noon, vit D and calcium (recommended) after dinner. these, at least, I am consistent with.

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 10, 2015

well, not a bad day 🙂 thank you all that supported me yesterday.

I can do this!! 🙂

breakfast: got my breakfast (1 hard-boiled egg) with me (good job!) before I left home, but forgotten to eat it at the office :)))) Coffee with brown sugar and creamer as usual (I never forget this one, do I?) 🙂

lunch: I was busy with work, so only another coffee with cream and sugar

dinner: pasta (left over from yesterday). I was very conscious about it being solely carbs (which is not good for my weight loss aim). So I decided I would eat something healthy after that. That is how I ended up eating 2 bunches of broccoli, raw, with a garlicky yogurt  as a dip. Yum 🙂

late night snack (added later): 2 small glasses of milk, 1 hard boiled egg, 3 slices of whole wheat bread

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron (prescribed) late afternoon, calcium and Vit D (recommended) after dinner

stretching: none (would be appreciated if I started this again)

healthy life – style journal, Nov 9, 2015

Like the idea of dieting and the (same) types of food I consume, I am getting bored of writing this journal…

Pew.. I did not feel as bad as I thought it would 🙂

It is okay, dear reader; occasional ranting is a feature of mine – nothing serious 🙂

Here is today’s account:

breakfast: remembered to take my breakfast with me! Yay! It was 1 hard-boiled egg. Of course, with it I have got coffee with creamer and brown sugar.

late-lunch: 1 cup of chicken-vegetable soup

dinner: carbs. carbs. carbs.. Well, I am not afraid of carbs anymore, but it would be nice if I had not eaten them too much, like before. Pasta was the dinner today, together with lettuce salad with olive oil dressing. Yummy.

late night snack (added later): lazy bean salad; mix a can of beans with a small onion and add a dash of oregano, salt, and olive oil. Vola! 🙂 (no milk tonite – does not look like a fit with the bean salad)

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning and 30 min walk in the afternoon.

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon, vit D and calcium (recomended by my doctor) after dinner

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 8, 2015

there has been changes in my body, which incidentally overlapped with the time I started to eat less carbs and more protein.

As a person good with observations and patterns, I could not help but think whether the carbs were not so bad after all; perhaps they help and are required for certain body functions?

Perhaps I have not done well by limiting carbs that much; but I can tell you this; the amount of carbs I was eating was above normal limits too.

So even though I have had this conflict in my mind, I will keep limiting the carbs and continue to eat better. I just will not get crazy about occasionally eating carbs.

Today’s diet reflected this.

late breakfast: 2 bagels with butter, coffee with cream and brown sugar. I ordered two bagels to test myself; nope, they are not as tasty as before so I am glad I have done that. the way they are toasted has not been great lately and that strengthens my choice of not eating bagels anymore. The coffee is not tasty either; I never liked this cafe’s coffee – so why do I keep drinking it? the answer is that it is in my favorite cafe. The cafe is my favorite because of its bagels and its staff, not the coffee. I decided to change the cafe from now on; it will also help me with seeing different places and having different experiences. A great step towards breaking a habit and the routine in my life. Exciting! 🙂

late lunch: 2 bowls of vegetable chicken soup

dinner: 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 tomato, and half a large cucumber with 2 slices of bread. I was too lazy to cook and I wanted to eat raw veggies. I am glad I ate the tomato even though it is not one of my favorite veggies. It was from the last week and I am glad I have eaten it before it started to go bad. Cucumber, as always, was a delight to eat.

late-night snack (added later):  1.5 glass of milk; 10 rice  cakes with caramel. Totally too much. Yet felt good. Like when you are at school and they tell you not to eat during the class. Or laugh. Or talk to our peers. And something prompts you to do it anyhow and miraculously you do not get caught. I am not sure whey I am rebelling against healthy eating (am I bored?), but mentally I am feeling good.

exercise: 10 min in the morning

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon; vit D and calcium (recommended by my doctor) after dinner

stretching: none yet

healthy life – style journal, Nov 7, 2015

Interesting day..

breakfast: 1 bagel with butter, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

late-lunch: vegetable soup in chicken stock

dinner: hah! here is the fun part. 1 can of corn and 6 chocolate chip cookies. I was at a store and could not resist buying and then eating the chips. What prompted me to eat them I have no idea. I guess it is one of those days when I find some freedom in my choices. As a matter of fact, with my budget as well I am a little bit relax nowadays. I guess I will wait and see how this episode will develop.

late-night snack (added later): 300 grms of yogurt and 4 slices of bread; 5 more cookies

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning and another 10 min in the evening

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon, vit D and calcium after dinner

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 6, 2015

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: two cans of fish

dinner: breaded flaky fish pieces (4 of them – it is delicious; how do they do it? this was a frozen meal and certainly yummy 🙂 ), a big red cabbage and celery salad with olive oil and lemon juice; This salad was the healthiest thing I have eaten this week. The raw veggies; especially those that are hard to digest (such as red cabbage, lo bok, cucumber) are good for my body. I know it as I feel it.

late-night snack (added later): 5 slices of whole wheat bread and 350 grms of yogurt. I craved for yogurt tonite – it happens time to time. I did not want to eat that much bread but then as long as it helped me to eat yogurt I did not mind (maybe I should have?)

exercise; 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron at noon (prescribed) and vitD and calcium after dinner (recommended to me by my doctor)

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 5, 2015

Not bad today 🙂

breakfast: 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar; 2 whole wheat bagels toasted with margarine

lunch: no food; coffee with creamer and brown sugar

dinner: I turned the left over crack-wheat salad into another meal; basically I had one large onion sauteed in olive oil; added a little bit of hot sauce, 3 eggs, and celery stick together with the left-over salad and cooked for 3-4 minutes. It turned out to be tasty 🙂

late-night snack (added later): 1 big apple (yummy 🙂 ) and a tall glass of skim milk

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning, 30 min in the evening

supplements: iron at noon, vitamin D and calcium after dinner

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Nov 4, 2015

It is a good day in terms of eating healthy food; I still need to implement strategies that will help me eat more in the mornings and at noon.

breakfast: coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: 100 grms of trail mix, coffee with creamer and sugar

dinner: cracked wheat salad with tomato, pepper, cilantro, olive oil and lemon juice. This is an easy and nutritious salad that is also filling. I have a large bowl, which I am working on time to time.

late-night snack (added later): one hard boiled egg to eat something enjoyable, which I had hoped would bring back my appetite (I love eggs); later 1 apple and a tall glass of skim milk 🙂

I am not sure why I do not have appetite. I usually would have a great love for food, especially at the evenings and nights. It is good at one hand as by not eating too much at nights, I am doing a favor to my body. On the hand hand, the low counts of calories I have been getting in the last one week or so means I am involuntarily slowing my metabolism. Hope to resolve this soon.

exercise: 30 min walking in the evening

supplements: iron (prescribed) at noon and vitamin D and calcium tablet (recommended by my doctor) after the dinner.

stretching: none today (I better re-start this – it is so enjoyable..)

healthy life – style journal, Nov 3, 2015

breakfast: forgotten to pick my breakfast from home; 2 cups of coffee with creamer and brown sugar. As usual, I am not feeling hungry in the mornings. I must do something new to encourage myself to have breakfast..

lunch: 1 can of fish, 50 grms of trail mix, coffee with creamer and brown sugar. I must say I have been reducing my sugar intake in the last while. That is good news 🙂

dinner: 1 pear, 3 eggs fried with 50 grms of cheese in olive oil, 3 slices of bread. The fact that I do not cook nowadays is working against me… Fried eggs help me to gain weight. Making a mental note again to start cooking at home.

late night snack (added later): 1 apple, 3 slices of whole wheat bread, 300 grms of yogurt sprinkled with a generous amount of olive oil and dried mint. This yogurt is a very refreshing dip – give it a try if you like the taste of dry mint with yogurt.

exercise: 30 min walk in the morning; climbing up 4 stories of stairs. Ok – when I arrived at my building this morning, the elevators were not working – so here is my extra exercise for the day! 🙂

supplements: iron at noon (prescription), vitamin D and calcium table after the dinner (recommendation by my doctor). I decided to note the prescription and recommendation to this list, as I do not want anyone else to get inspired and take these supplements without their doctor’s recommendation. Please have your doctor’s opinion before taking supplements.

stretching: none so far….

healthy life – style journal, Nov 2, 2015

Another low appetite day, which worries me. If I am not wrong, low calorie intake is not good – eventually makes the body feel like on starvation mode, which later helps with gaining more weight upon returning to regular diet.

I am trying to eat as much as I can today.

breakfast: forgotten my meal; 2 cups of coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: no meal; coffee with creamer and brown sugar

dinner: 1 pear, 1 cup of left-over rice from yesterday, cucumber and yogurt sauce with olive oil. 3 slices of whole wheat bread

late night snack (added later): 1 tall glass of skim milk

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon (yay! walking is great and I have not been able to do so in the last 10 days or so; very grateful)

supplements: iron supplement at noon, calcium and vitamin D supplementation after dinner

stretching: not done this yet; hope to find time to do some light stretching tonite, while also listening to relaxing music 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Nov 1, 2015

it is surprising to notice that I have been keeping this journal for 2 months now.

Since I am eating and nourishing my body with better food and necessary supplementation, I am glad I have started this journey.

Today has been a good day in terms of good eating; cannot complain 🙂

breakfast: one bagel with butter, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

lunch: turmeric rice, cucumber and yogurt sauce with olive oil and dried mint

dinner: the same as the lunch

late-night snack (added later): 50 grms of trailer mix

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning

supplements: iron at noon, vitamin D and calcium after the dinner

stretching: none today.

Hoping to walk and stretching tomorrow. Good that I have not forgotten my supplements so far 🙂 Rice is usually does not agree with my system, yet is a welcome change in my diet. Yogurt and cucumber are always awesome to eat and the addition of mint has given a fresh kick to the meal 🙂

healthy life – journal, Oct 31, 2015

late breakfast: 1 cup of coffee with cream and sugar

lunch: 1 pear

dinner: soup, fish, salad, pasta, and bread. A generous amount of rice crackers and a little amount of fruit. I was invited for a dinner with great friends. I enjoyed being with them. the food was amazing 🙂 I feel bloated and like eaten too much 😦

exercise: 10 min in the morning

supplements: iron supplement at noon, bit D and calcium supplement at night

stretching: none

healthy life – style journal, Oct 30, 2015

Alright… I am back to my daily posts on my healthy life – style plan.

You all know that I did not keep up with it during my trips; reason? The reason was that I took my trips as a great way to remove any restrictions and obligations. To make them enjoyable. The end result was not great, certainly, now that I am at the same weight as I have started eating better 2 months ago 😦

Now that I got this off my chest, here is today’s account:

late breakfast: 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

late lunch: 1 banana

dinner: one can of corn, 50 grms of trail mix

I do not have appetite today at all…. very surprising as I usually love to eat, especially at nights. Maybe my appetite will get better after this hour 🙂

late-night snack (added later): 1 banana, 1 tall glass of milk, and later; yogurt and 3 slices of whole wheat bread, 100 grms of trail mix

exercise: 10 min walk at noon

supplements: iron supplementation at noon, vit D and calcium tablet after dinner.

stretching: none for today

healthy life – style journal, Oct 20, 2015

I record my weight on Tuesdays; so here is the moment of truth 🙂

I am 202 pounds, 8 pounds less than when I started my healthy eating on Sept 1, 2015.

It is not a substantial loss, but a loss nevertheless. I can do nothing but being appreciative of this and hopeful that I will continue to lose the extra weight over time.

breakfast: forgotten my breakfast at home; coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: one can of fish, coffee with cream and sugar, and 1 tea biscuit

late afternoon; 3 soft meatballs

dinner (added later): I do not have an appetite today, either but I will force myself to eat a little so that I do not consume less calories than my body needs to. I have eaten 3 slices of whole wheat bread and 50 grms of cheese. I have noticed that I have been eating these very frequently. I also remembered, through the conversations in the comment area, that I have not been eating enough veggies. Hence, I have also eaten a large cucumber. Life is good 🙂

late night snack (added later): 1 apple

exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon (no walk in the morning today – it was raining so I took the cab)

stretching: 10 min in the afternoon while listening relaxing music 🙂 it was great!

supplements: iron supplement in the afternoon,  calcium and vitamin D supplement after the dinner.

healthy life – style journal, Oct 19, 2015

A beautiful day 🙂

I do not have appetite today, so I have not eaten much during the day yet. I have no idea I will have at dinner, either. I will take it easy and all will be fine.

breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with brown sugar and creamer

lunch: did not have much time to eat; munched on peanuts

dinner (added later): 1 apple, 1 slice of whole wheat bread, and 50 grms of cheese so far.

late-night snack (added later): 2 slices of whole wheat bread, 1 avocado

exercise: did very well today 🙂 30 min in the morning and another 30 min in the evening. Yay! 🙂

supplements: iron supplementation at noon. I took my calcium and vit D supplementation after dinner (they are fat-soluable, so they should be taken with food).

stretching (new): stretched my back, neck, arms, and legs while listening to a relaxing music!. Good job 🙂

how am I doing with the challenges I have assigned to myself a while ago?

I am too talkative today… I know.. I know… Hope you do not mind! Having a day to myself without working or house chore is really a blessing – it allows me to learn and do new stuff and get excited about the new useful information.

This post is a continuation of a few number of previous posts where I wrote about the changes I would like to do in my life; some of them good for my budget, some good for my mental or physical health. I revisit them time to time to see how I have done since the last time. I also update them, too, and create new challenges for myself.

so let’s see how I have done so far:

—————————————————————————————

challenge 1: take the bus (not the cab). It was done then!. I am even better since then; I started to walk in the morning from home to office in the last 3 weeks! I am so excited about this and happy to see that I have the energy to do so and open-heartedness to truly enjoy it. I am not sure how long I can keep doing that as the old man winter is about to arrive and it also rains time to time. Let’s cross the fingers 🙂

challenge 2: eat better and healthy – cut out the carbs and consume more veggies and fruits. DONE. I am eating much better compared to before 🙂

challenge 3: walk an extra 30 min at the weekends. NOT DONE – NEED A PLAN.

challenge 4: do not buy books for two months. DONE! 🙂 I have a shopping freeze till holidays and it has been going really well, I am okay with occasional purchase of a great book.

challenge 5: cut out the bagel breakfast- one bagel/breakfast. DONE!

challenge 6: do grocery shopping as required and buy small amounts. Going well. DONE! 🙂 

challenge 7: start listening to music and relaxing 20 min a day; this is done easily now thanks to my computer and youtube/internet sources. DONE! 🙂 

challenge 8: drink at least one cup of tea a day. I easily and lovingly do this during the week. DONE! 🙂 

challenge 9: get up in the morning and smile to yourself and hum a song. well, remembered to do only a few times. NEED MOTIVATION AGAIN.

PLAN: just remember this challenge; the rest will come 🙂

challenge 10: look outside the window at the office three times a day – enjoy the view and relax. Going well. DONE! 🙂 

challenge 11: record the progress in these areas in breaking the routine or joy journal categories. Not necessarily in these pages, but I kept posting them somewhere in this blog, good job 🙂 Going well. DONE! 🙂 

challenge 12: increase the contribution made to the RRSP account. NOT DONE yet but now that my chequing account has a positive balance, I am getting closer to implement it. I am planning to increase it in the new year by cutting out some expenses- exciting!

challenge 13: during the day remember to smile.  NEED MOTIVATION AGAIN.

PLAN:  just remember this challenge; the rest will come 🙂

challenge 14: lose 15 pounds in two months – record weight and food consumed every day. PARTIALLY DONE. I have been on a healthy – life style mission in the last 7 weeks; all I have lost is around 6-7 pounds. It is going slower than I had expected, but at least it is happening. So I am happy with it 🙂

challenge 15: stick to the plans – I have done these before and I can do it again. ALMOST DONE 🙂 keep going.

challenge 16: comb the hair everyday. I do not need that anymore – have the hair cut short. Yay! But i can easily change this into a new challenge for my short hair; dye the hair every month but every 6 months, get it dyed in a saloon to get a better treatment.

challenge 17: spare 5 min every day to breathe – just to breathe. NOT DONE. I am re-introducing this challenge again. I will start doing this today – it is always relaxing.

challenge 18: apply sunscreen every morning. NOT DONE…NOT APPLICABLE ANYMORE (summer is gone)

challenge 19: apply moisturiser every night. NOT DONE…. It is such a nourishing activity. I should start it now that winter is coming, my skin feels dry.

challenge 20: every week, eat two different food from last week – whether veggies or fruits or others. Change the brands or types of canned food or others I regularly consume. I have been consuming canned beans and others rarely since I started my healthy eating plan. In terms of variety, yes I need to do that and started with it this week – good job 🙂

challenge 21: take the stairs at the office (2 storeys) at least twice a week. NEED MOTIVATION AGAIN.

challenge 22: write the joy journal every day; no matter how dry or repeating it may feel.  I do not write it every day – NEED ADJUSTMENT. The primary reason is I keep blogging about many other topics and it does not leave much time to write my joy journal. nevertheless, all is well and I will keep writing it 😉

challenge 23: have a budget, write down all expenses in each category, do not over-spend the weekly allowance, save as much as you can. DONE!  I am certainly spending less than before and more consciously. I even managed to bring my chequing account to a positive balance. My credit card and cable fees are also down. I am taking advantage of the sales and discounts and I am very abundant. I am proud of my efforts. Yay! 🙂

challenge 24: continue to declutter the home and donate the usable items. DONE! I still need to get rid of the VHSs and CDs, but I have donated my clothes and a large number of books a couple of months ago – feeling good 🙂

challenge 25 (new challenge): learn ways to minimize food waste. I have started this; even though my waste in the past was limited, my aim is to completely prevent it. I will keep reading blogs and websites, get ideas, and implement them as appropriate.

challenge 26 (new challenge): Stretch your body every day and start with light weight lifting activities. Even better, start the gym at the work place to do some free weight exercises. I should be doing these. As soon as I am done with my trips, I will start my free weight training; my plan is to do it twice a week; mondays and fridays. Once I start, I am sure I will be hooked as weights are always fun to work with 🙂

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It is so satisfying to see that I have been noting down the beneficial changes I would like to make in my life and seeing that the majority has been implemented. The flexibility to adjust them and to add new ones, as well as this checks I do time to time help me tuned in and motivated to keep going. Overall, this has been one of my most valuable experiences 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Oct 18, 2015

Almost no exercise, but the food I consumed so far has been great 🙂

breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, one cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar. It is amazing that although I keep going to the same cafe, I have no difficulty not ordering bagels anymore. Yesterday the staff at the cafe had asked me whether I would also get bagels as usual 🙂 I said I was limiting carbs and he understood it. He even said “sorry, I did not mean to remind you them!!”. How nice of this young gentleman 🙂

lunch: soup with 3 slices of bread

dinner: soft meatball, leek, and carrot meal; I am in favor of not cooking veggies a lot and make them mushy. I think cooking breaks their fiber and fiber is what we all need. So I cooked first the meatballs and  then added carrot and the leek. I turned off the stove before the leek lost its crispy feel.

late-night snack (added later): 1 big apple (delicious 🙂 ) and 1 tall glass of milk

exercise: 10 min in the morning.

supplements: iron supplement before the lunch and calcium+VitD supplement after dinner.

My pharmacists told me that iron supplementation could cause constipation; one remedy is to take it with food/drinks that contain vitamin C, such as orange or apple juice. Apparently, vitamin C helps iron to be absorbed by the body. I thought I would share in case you also are recommended to take iron supplements.

healthy life – style journal, Oct 17, 2015

I am grateful for all the food I have in my pantry, fridge, and freezer.

I am trying to eat a little bit better today and also give my body a rest; I still have the cold but it is getting better. Soup and warm drinks are really good; so is water.

I felt discouraged this morning, as the total weight loss I have had in the last 6 weeks is only 5 pounds…. I had thought I would lose more. It is partly because of the trip I have had lately I guess (eating more and different food, and long flights), but I have two more trips to come, meaning I can expect a similar pattern…On the other hand, with this plan, I have more energy, I walk more, and I eat really well compared to before. I know I am doing much better in nourishing my body.

I hope to see more weight loss soon to at least have some more motivation to keep going. It is too much to think that I will have to cut out calories, eat different things, or exercise more should I not lose weight on this plan.

breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

late-morning snack: 1 pear

late lunch: salad with tomato, cucumber, green pepper, onion, and olive oil. That was really healthy 🙂

dinner (planned): fish bits, frozen and cooked at oven.

late-night snack (added later): 1 large apple, 1 tall glass of milk, 350 grms of yogurt sprinkled with cinnamon and a small spoon of honey – warming and lovely; give this a try 🙂

late-late-night snack (added later): 2 slices of whole heat bread and 50 grms cheese

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning. that is probably all for today, though I am contemplating about walking in the evening. I will see how it goes..

supplements: 1 iron supplement before lunch, 1 calcium and vitD supplement after salad

healthy life – style journal, Oct 16, 2015

Pretty relax day…

I started walking in the morning; I walked for 10 min or so then one of my good friends here gave me a ride. I could not possibly say “no, friend, I am going to walk“. I enjoy her company and we always have sincere and fun conversations. So it is well worth it 🙂

When we got to our building, I realized how hungry I was… Hmm.. So I went to the cafeteria for unhealthy food.

I know well why I do not have my breakfast at home; I gotta leave the house right away upon waking up. I know this is a peculiar habit, but this is what it has been and I have no interest to tackle it. However, I do not know why I do not pick up my breakfast with me before I leave home; that would be wonderful as I almost always have something healthy to grab. Sigh… 🙂

breakfast: 1 cup of coffee with cream but no sugar (there was no brown sugar at the cafeteria so I thought “When I go back to the office, I can add brown sugar“). Of course I have forgotten that, too. So I drank the coffee without sugar 🙂 That is interesting as I never thought I would drink a coffee like this… But I guess what helped was the two carrot muffins I have bought and ate, together with the coffee.

I know… I know…. It is so not me. First, I do not actually have a sweet tooth (I am lucky). Second, muffins are not healthy at all (not nutrition-packed and full of sugar, which I am trying to limit to help my blood sugar levels).

lunch: 1 banana, 1 bowl of soup, 2 slices of whole wheat bread, 1 cup of tea, 2 small tacos with tofu.

late-afternoon snack: 1 pear

dinner: 1 bowl of soup, 2 slices of whole wheat. I do not think I am done yet. I will try to eat some raw veggies, such as cucumber or tomato, to get my body some nutritious food. Plus, for some reason raw veggies always help me lose weight.

late-night snack (added later): 1 big apple, tofu squares dashed with honey, 1 tall glass of milk

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning, 30 min walk in the afternoon

supplements: iron supplement at noon; 1 tables of calcium and VitD after the dinner.

healthy life – style journal, Oct 15, 2015

I keep eating the same things over and over. Are you not bored of the food I consume? 🙂

You should and I finally am. So from this week on, I will try to consume at least one other fruit in addition to apples and 2 veggies that I have not had in the last week.

That plan made me feel good 🙂

breakfast: 1 bagel with butter, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

lunch: 1 bowl of chicken noodle soup

late-afternoon snack: 1 banana (yep; something I have not eaten lately 🙂 )

dinner: 1 bowl of chicken noodle soup, 3 slices of whole wheat bread, lots of raw carrots. I bought carrots as part of the new plan of eating a variety of food. I am glad I have. The young carrots (thin and crispy ones) are excellent snacks; I also love them in salads (grated). Yum, yum, yum! 🙂

late-nigh snack (added later): 1 bowl of chicken noodle soup, 1.5 glass of milk

exercise: Walked a little bit longer today 🙂 30 min in the afternoon, followed by another 15 min walk, and then 45 min walk after that. (I try not to sum all up like 1.5 hours of walk. The reason for that there is a difference between a walk here and there and then a continuous walk; I believe a continuous walk would be the one that make me sweat most, but I keep hearing interval training is also great. Your choice 🙂 ).

calcium and VitD supplement: 1 tablet after the dinner

healthy life – style journal, Oct 14, 2015

I cannot believe it is mid-October 🙂

breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

late morning snack: 50 grms of peanut

lunch: 2 cans of fish

dinner: cucumber. tomato, and onion salad with olive oil, 3 slices of whole wheat bread, chicken noodle soup with lots of lemon juice. I have got a cold; so the chicken soup is my best medication right now. I also feel like raw onion does help with it. So the dinner today is full of healing nutrients 🙂

late night snack (added later): 75 grms of cheese. I am not drinking milk tonite; at least I have got the calcium to be obtained from food (not supplement) by eating cheese, even though I did not have enough daily Vit D today.. oh well, tomorrow then 🙂

exercise: 1o min walk in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon. There was a function that I needed to attend in the morning somewhere close to my home – I managed to leave it before the coffee and pastry/muffin type of snacks are served (good job! 🙂 ) – a colleague of mine gave me a ride to office, which I appreciated very much. The muscle I pulled the other day has not healed yet so walking is a little bit challenging time to time.

supplements: 1 tablet of calcium and Vit D after the dinner

healthy life – style journal, Oct 13, 2015

Today is the day I record my weight: it is 205 pounds. Only 5 pounds less than the start on Sept 1, 2015.

It is going slow; I am not demotivated yet; I know that little by little it will go, maybe it will take longer than what I projected at the beginning, but I will continue to have a healthier diet and physical exercise; they help me nourish my body and exercise is vastly important for feeling good 🙂

breakfast: I have forgotten to take my breakfast with me; coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: 50 grms of peanuts; it was a day full of meetings and thus I could not find time to eat better.

late-afternoon: coffee with creamer and brown sugar

dinner: 3 hard-boiled eggs and cucumber salad with olive oil; 3 slices of whole wheat bread

late-night snack (added later): 2 apples, 1 tall glass of milk

exercise: walking 30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon 🙂

supplements (calcium and Vit D): I forgot to have one during the day; I do not think I will have another tonite as I just took medication for my back pain. I should make sure to have milk tonite to get a little bit of calcium and VitD.

healthy life – style journal, Oct 12, 2015

What a great day – happy Thanksgiving to my Canadian friends and happy Columbus day to my American friends. I hope you all are having a great, relaxing and peaceful day full with sweet moments with family and friends.

I have so far done really well with my healthy life-style plan today. I walked for 50 min in the morning! I did not even take my purse with me; I just left with my key, focused on walking, the rhythm of my body as I walked, and the scenery. I kept pretty much a faster than average speed and I loved seeing how well my body handles it (i.e. without straining itself) and how it made me sweat. Sweating is good; for some reason I am feeling much better when my body works to this extent. I am very grateful for today being an off day, which allowed me to have this wonderful experience.

I know I can do this more often and I know that I do not feel tired as I used to time to time in the past. Starting to walk for leisure again is positively affecting me and I am very excited about this 🙂

breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, 1 cup of coffee with cream and sugar

lunch: green beans and beef meal (left-over from yesterday)

late-afternoon snack: 1 apple

dinner: red cabbage and hard tofu cubes salad with olive oil

late-night snack (added later): 1 apple, tofu bits sprinkled with brown sugar, 1 tall glass of milk

exercise: 50 min walk in the morning 🙂

supplements: 1 calcium and Vit D tablet after the dinner

back from trip #1

I returned back from trip #1 yesterday night; I have been to Athens for a business meeting. I could not find time to go around the city much due to the 9 am – 8 pm meetings, but the weather was nice (around 25-28 C), which is awesome. When my plane arrived here at night, it was 7 C – ouch! 🙂

I also found a chance to get together with friends the day I arrived there (no meeting day); it was amazing 🙂

The long flight used to make me nervous and uneasy (I need my sleep and I do not like the idea of sitting for long hours); yet I was happy to see that my body handled it very well – I am very grateful for this 🙂

I was worried about how I would do with my budget and healthy life – style plans prior to this trip. I have not done amazingly great, but I did pretty good. While  food choices and exercise during the flights and at the airports are challenging, I must say I still cared about what I eat and even walked around 45 min withing the airport on the way to Athens.

At Athens, I walked around 1 hour everyday in the evenings – I did extremely good with that and I am very proud of myself. I have not eaten much of the snacks (usually cookies and other sweet stuff served at the meetings) during the day (I ate only three small pieces over three days) and except one day, I have eaten really well (one day I have had two pieces of sweets, which made me hungry after a few hours and eat later). During breakfast, lunch, and dinner, I refrained from getting a second plate and filled my plates with lots of greens and raw veggies and meat. For someone who likes to eat and who likes to eat carbs, that was pretty good. I am pleased with this 🙂 My current weight is more than what I had prior to the trip, but I am almost sure that it is the water retained in my body, which I hope will go away in a couple of days.

I have bought souvenirs and little gifts for my loved ones and I had to take the cab once to go to the city center. Other than these, I did not have a major expense. These cost me an extra $180. I am okay with this. Considering that I did not even buy many stuff I liked; like a pair of nice boots. I think it is the economic situation; I found it very affordable and I wish I had more time to shop. Alas, maybe next time.

The airport food is not only ridiculously expensive but also quite limited in variety. I will continue to take the snacks and sandwiches I prepare at home with me for my next trips as well – at least they help me eat well for a while.

In sum, overall both my budget and healthy  life – style plans went okay, although not perfect. I guess it is quite a progress on my side that I did not return to my previous eating or spending habits – that makes me happy and proud 🙂

cheers everyone 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Oct 11, 2015

The scale says I gained weight during my trip; if I know my body (and I do), I will lose 2-3 pounds of it in the coming days. I believe this extra weight are mostly water retained in my body due to different types of foods I consumed and the long flights I took. so even though I have eaten during the trip more than I usually do here at home, I am not too worried; the weight I have gained will be lost soon.

breakfast: none (got up late)

lunch: 1 bagel (toasted and buttered), 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar

dinner: green beans, onion, and minced beef meal in oven; 1 slice of bread

late-night snack (added later): 1 apple, trail mix

exercise: none

supplements: 1 tablet of calcium and vit D after the dinner

healthy life – style journal, Oct 6, 2015

Boy; a long day and I am hungry 🙂

breakfast; coffee with cream and sugar; 1 cheese and avocado sandwich (2 slices of bread and 1 mashed avocado) as well as egg salad sandwich with orange pepper

later; coffee with cream and sugar

lunch: spicy thai soup with one bagel (toasted and ligthly buttered), 450 ml milk

later; 1 apple

dinner: Caesar’s salad, tortilla chips with cheese, guacamole, salsa, and some other dips

second dinner: one small roll of bread, small salad, chicken, and brownie with tea

late-night snack (added later): trail mix, tea

exercise: walking 15 min

supplements: None – I believe milk and food I have had today had enough levels of calcium and Vit D

healthy life – style journal, Oct 5, 2015

I have little appetite today; great after a weekend of little indulgence 🙂

breakfast: forgotten food at home; coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: coffee with cream and sugar; a can of fish

dinner: 6-7 fish bits cooked at oven (left over from yesterday); 1/2 hard boiled egg, 1 apple

late night – snack (added later): 1 apple, 2 hard-boiled eggs and two slices of whole wheat bread

exercise: yahoo 🙂 walking 30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon (i am so loving the morning walks. Wish the weather will be permissive for a very long time so that I can keep doing this. Please. please. please. 🙂 )

supplements: 1 calcium and Vit D tablet after the dinner

healthy life – style journal, Oct 3 2015

relatively good day 🙂

I think I have seen some weight loss on the scale this morning 🙂

breakfast: 1 bagel with butter, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar. You may remember my love for bagels; I left the home without thinking about having a healthier breakfast and thought, “ok, what the hey; let’s have a bagel”. I did and I did not even think that I missed the bagels 🙂

late lunch: green beans meal and meatballs; 1 slice of 12-grain bread, 1 English cucumber (too much? well, so be it; it was crunchy, juicy and just fantastic! I am glad I have had it)

late afternoon snack: 1 apple

dinner (updated later): red cabbage salad, cheese sandwich with 2 slices of whole wheat bread

late-night snack (added later): 1 pear, yogurt.

Later at night I craved for broccoli.

Can you imagine?

Have you ever craved for broccoli dear friends? I doubt it 🙂 but if you ever have, please drop a line to say so that I can know I am not the only one 🙂 Anyways, enough with this; just because I do not like broccoli does not mean you do not. Honestly, I loved eating raw broccoli dipped with garlicky yogurt. It was awesome 🙂

I am glad I craved for it and it was fresh and crunchy; I know it is also very healthy. I am grateful for it.

exercise: 10 min walk in the morning

supplements: calcium and Vit D after the late lunch

healthy life – style journal, Oct 2, 2015

breakfast: forgotten again at home 😦  coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: the best meal of the day: chicken sandwich and salad, coffee with cream and sugar

dinner: 3 hard-boiled eggs and two slices of 12-grain bread

supplements: 1 calcium and Vit D after the dinner

late-night snack (added later): 1 tall glass of milk, 1 apple 🙂

exercise: 30 min walking in the morning; no walk in the afternoon as it was raining.

healthy life – style journal, Oct 1, 2015

Walking in the morning is going well – it is a very appreciated habit now 🙂

I also have had a nice lunch; I was at home working and took the opportunity to prepare myself a nice, hearty sandwich. Cannot complain 🙂

breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

late-morning snack: small amount of trail mix

lunch: cheese and avocado sandwich with 2 slices of bread, cheese, and 1 mashed up avocado

late-afternoon snack: 1 apple

dinner: 3 oven-baked battered fish pieces, salad with tomato, cucumber, pepper, and olive oil.

late-night snack (added later): 1 tall glass of milk, two apples, 1 slice of bread and a little piece of cheese

supplements: calcium and Vit D after lunch

Exercise: walking 30 min in the morning and 30 min at noon 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Sept 30, 2015

I have attended a workshop in the morning somewhere away; so no walking in the morning. I did not walk in the afternoon either; I had a meeting till 7.30 pm and luckily one of my colleagues gave me a ride. So no exercise today.

Eating has not been great, either. In the workshop there were unhealthy snacks which I happily ate. What is it about free food and eating in excessive amounts? I would like to know.

breakfast: 1 hard-boiled eggs, 1 slice of bread, coffee with creamer and sugar; 4 small packs of chocolate cookies or granola bars.

lunch: 1 can of fish.

late-afternoon snack: a lot of trial mix

dinner: kale meal, 3 pieces of battered fish with lemon juice

late-night snack  (added later): biscuits, 1 tall glass of milk, 1 apple

calcium and VitD supplements: forgotten to take after the lunch

exercise: none

healthy life -style journal, Sept 29, 2015

Tuesdays are the day that I record my weight; after 4 weeks of healthy eating, my weight did not change much . My weight is 207 pounds (still). Total loss is a mere 3 pounds in 4 weeks.

Ok; I know that a few days back it was 205 pounds and I am suspicious of water retention because of the introduction of new food to my diet this week; oat and milk. I will see in a couple of days whether that is what it is. Otherwise, I am discouraged but am determined to continue to eat good food.

I know I still need to work on the practice of eating a hearty breakfast and lunch so that I will need less calories in the evening/night; I am almost certain that this will help me to lose weight. We will see how I go with this.

Breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Lunch: 1 can of fish, trail mix.

Dinner: kale meal with olive oil, tomato paste, and chili. well, it was tasty but not enough, so I also ate two hard-boiled eggs with a dash of olive oil on top and 3 slices of 12 grain bread

late-night snack (added later): 1 apple, 1 tall glass of skim milk

exercise: walking 30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon (at least I am doing this right 🙂 )

healthy life – style journal, Sept 28, 2015

Time to time, change can come quite easy. Not always, but sometime. Especially if you enjoy doing/having the new change.

This is the case for me; I walked to the office from home again this morning 🙂 I did not even think about not walking 🙂 See, there is no mental judo here for me (I had mental judo before; while having quite a difficulty in deciding to take the bus rather than the cab every morning at the beginning of my conscious spending plan implemented 4 months ago).

I used to walk for hours every day prior to I moved to my current city. I mentioned this a couple of times that our weather is a little bit challenging; our winters are long and we can get rain anytime year round . In addition, in winter the sidewalks are usually icy if the temperature is below 0 C for extended time periods and it is not unusual to see the snow banks occupying them, too. These two reasons make walking in my city quite challenging (walking on the road when the sidewalks are not permissive is not a safe practice; trust me). Also, although for some reason I am usually okay walking in the afternoon, as a non-morning person, I am not in the mood to walk in the morning. This was also accelerated with general lack of energy in the mornings. Or, that is what I have thought so far.

Anyways, I am very happy that I have the joyful activity of walking in the mornings lately. I know there will be times that I will not want to do this (e.g. when it is too cold, too dump, or too rainy/icy), but until then I will enjoy doing it 🙂

Good job me! 🙂

On the other hand, I am not sure how my new eating plan is going. I gained 2 pounds yesterday; I am assuming it is the new food types I am consuming (oat, milk) that help retain water in my body (and hence the extra pounds), but I you can guess it is quite demoralizing….

breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: did not have time to think about eating a proper lunch – munched on trial mix

late-afternoon snack: 1 apple

dinner: meatloaf and 1 slice of 12 grain bread

late-night snack (added later): 1 tall glass of skim milk, 1 apple, 2 small cucumbers. Later: 3 slices of bread and cheese

calcium and Vit D supplements: 1 after the lunch

walking: 30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Sept 27, 2015

I ate a lot yesterday night; argh!!! And kind of unhealthy today.. Another argh..

well, I try to convince myself that every once a while it can be okay. I hope, though, I will keep it with “every once a while”…

On the other hand, I am pleased with my decision to drink milk everyday (see below).

Breakfast: 50 gr cheese, coffee with cream and brown sugar

Lunch: waffles.. what is it about waffles that I crave for? Simple – it is their crunchiness. I went to shop and could not resist buying one. Lots of calories, minimal nutrition….

Dinner: mixed salad with red and white radish, cucumber, green onions, tomato, and olive oil.

Late night snack (planned): Skim milk. My doctor’s office sent me a booklet yesterday about the calcium and Vit D intake. It was very useful – thanking them very much. They recommend getting a maximum of 50% of the daily requirements for calcium and Vit D from supplements – the rest better comes from the food I consume.. I loved this. There is quite an information about the food that contain these two micronutrient. I noticed that it is the milk that has the highest amount of both. I am not a fan of milk, but I bought some today and am planning to drink every night. It will feel good (knowing that I have done really good) 🙂

As snacks, I may also get apples or the honey-cinnamon-granola bars I have tried at home for the first time today 🙂

added after the post: ate the granola bars; then I craved for salty stuff and ate a little bit of cheese and 1 slice of bread.

Exercise: 15 min walking in the morning.

healthy life – style journal, Sept 26, 2015

Not bad so far; I managed to cook for dinner (yay!) and had a nice lunch with friends 🙂

Breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 cup of coffee with cream and sugar

Lunch: veggie omelet with fries (I know… I know…) and fruit, coffee with sugar and cream. This lunch was awesome. I was with friends, the view and the cafe were great, and the meal tasted really good. Finishing the lunch with fruits, to my surprise, was very nice. Great that I have eaten a variety of fruits today 🙂

dinner: I am cooking meatloaf with tomato, peppers, onions, and broccoli on the side. I placed everything in an oven dish and then boiled water with tomato paste and added it to the dish. As per broccoli, I do not think it is the best companion in an oven dish, but I tasted it (the meal is still cooking), and to my surprise it actually tasted well 🙂 I am glad I added it to this dish and did not just waste it.

late-night snack (added later): yogurt and 3 slices of 12 grain bread, 2 small apples

exercise: sporadic walking here and there. Nothing specific.

Supplements: Calcium and Vit D (x1) taken after the dinner.

healthy life – style journal, Sept 25, 2015

Yours truly did it again and walked from home to the office in the morning! 🙂

Yay! Could not be happier of myself. Seriously. So well done 🙂

Eating during the day, on the other hand, is still challenging.

Breakfast: forgotten my breakfast at home; contemplated about eating from the cafe but decided against it (good job – no junk today, either), munched on trail mix, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Lunch: cheese sandwich, 1 apple

Dinner: hamburger on bun and salad (eating out with friends) – good job choosing salad over fries 🙂

Late night snack (updated later): 1 apple

Exercise: walking 30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon 🙂

Supplements: calcium and Vit D (x1)

random thoughts

I need a plan to implement more exercise in my life.

That is why now I am trying to “remember” how much I enjoyed walking and exercise. How I felt during and after. How stronger it made my body and mind.

See, the beginning is the hurdle. For example, to exercise, first I must decide about a convenient and affordable place to go. My work place has a variety of work-out facilities. Are they affordable? Well, depends. What are the alternatives? I have no gym close to my home. So going to the work-place gym is very convenient; I can drop by after work, relax and work-out as I wish, and then walk back home. No hurdle here.

Second, I need to remember having some snacks with me prior to the exercise (considering that I cannot even remember packing my breakfast with me in the morning, this one is gonna be challenging). There may be a solution to that, though; I can stock up and keep the snacks in my backpack (which I will use to carry my sports clothes/shoes). Good options? Hmm. What are my options really? I do not want to eat nuts (I already consume them at the office). Granola bars etc. are not good for me (too much sugar). Seriously, what are good options as durable snacks for me?

Ok. Third, I need to decide about the dates; I would love to exercise twice a week for now. Which days? Mondays for sure – after the hibernating weekends, it will feel good. The second day – could it be Friday? I guess so. What other way to close the work week and start celebrating the weekend?

Fourth, when shall I start? The earlier is better, so I am aiming for the coming Monday. Good decision! 🙂

Fifth; where will I cut in my expenses to cover for the fee? Something to think about. The fee is about $35/month. I can do this, right?

Right! 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Sept 23, 2015

Okay; eating during the day is still a challenge for me, but dinner was great today 🙂

breakfast: forgotten my breakfast at home, 3 cups of coffee with creamer and sugar

lunch: 1 can of fish, green tea

late-afternoon snack: peanuts

dinner: a large salad with lettuce, cucumber, fresh cilantro, and olive oil. 3 pieces of battered fish pieces (oven baked, frozen)

late-night snack (added later): 1 apple and two pieces of fish. Later, yogurt with brown sugar

Exercise: I have done great today 🙂 walking 30 min in the morning. It was so nice, so peaceful that I decided to give it a try every morning (weather permitting). I am excited (good to see that I have energy; last May I had tried and I was really tired in the mornings, so I had left the idea then). I also walked in the afternoon for 30 min.

Supplements: my doctor recommended calcium and vit D supplements for me recently. Okay; I started yesterday (twice a day).

random thoughts

I am firm that I made peace with my body.

I am not young any more and as I am not stupid either, I can see what the aging has been doing to my body. My body is not the same as 10 years ago. I have no idea what will happen to it in another 10 years, either.

It is not that I am not feeling sorry; I am.

I used to take care of my body better prior to the last 7 years. I am glad I have. It is true that I could (and I still can) take steps to nourish and tone up my skin, my muscles. I can for example work on my biceps or triceps. Legs. Abs. Neck. I know I can do these.

There are many women out there who have taken better care of their body by diet and exercise and whose bodies hence looks younger. Maybe their genes helped, too. I do not know. But good job – please keep going.

It is just that this (aging and the associated changes in the body) is a normal extension of life. A privilege of living to this age. Who said that I could not live to age?

Honestly I am okay with my body and with aging. As long as both are healthy and happy.

healthy life – style journal, Sept 22, 2015

Sometimes awkward, sometimes great day in terms of eating 🙂

Anyways; it has been 3 weeks that I have been trying to eat better. Since then I lost 6 pounds. Not too much, but considering the fact that I actually gained a couple of pounds within the first week, I will take this as something to cherish 🙂

Breakfast: forgot my healthy breakfast; as a matter of fact I remembered about it as I was leaving home, but did not feel like going back (that is how I relate to breakfast during the week-days. sigh..). Then I bought a cup of coffee with cream and sugar and while on it also a tea biscuit. Well… It was delicious. Consider this one of the “reward me” days (how many have I had lately?)

Lunch: 30 grms of cheese. I was working and did not feel like eating lunch.

Late-afternoon snack: 1 apple

Dinner: that was not bad. I worked till late so I did not have time to cook. So I decided to eat a large (I mean, really large) salad with tomatoes, cucumber, onion, green peppers, and olive oil. Also had 2 hard-boiled eggs to compensate for the lack of adequate amount of calories to be consumed for today.

Late-night snack (added after the post): 1 can of corn, yogurt with brown sugar. I crave for sugar late nights sometime. I wonder why. I also wonder whether it has anything to do with eating less bread (i.e. less carbs).

Exercise: walking – 10 min in the morning and 30 min in the evening.

healthy life – style journal, Sept 21, 2015

Breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Lunch: vastly forgotten; munched on peanuts and coffee with cream and sugar

Dinner (planned): oven-cooked frozen fish pieces – they look like breaded. Ok. lettuce salad with olive oil and lemon juice.

Late-night snack (added later): 1 apple. Okay I love apples but I guess it is time I bring in some variety to fruits. I will try pears next week.

Exercise: walking; 10 min in the morning, 30 min in the afternoon.

healthy life -style journal, Sept 20, 2015

Breakfast: 1/2 slice of whole wheat bread, 1 hard boiled egg, coffee with cream and sugar

Lunch: 1 apple (was working and I did not have time for lunch)

Dinner: chicken noodle soup and red cabbage salad (no olive oil)

Late-night snack: 2 apples, 1 bowl of soup. I am eyeing the yogurt as well 🙂 (added the next day: well I did that; ate yogurt but it tasted sour a little bit; so added 1 table spoon of brown sugar and enjoyed it a lot 🙂 I know… I know… sugar is not that good. I am trying 🙂

Exercise: walking. A lot! Thanks to the Terry Fox Run walk, I got to walk around 1 hr 45 min today. Yay!

healthy life – style journal, Sept 19, 2015

Awkward day 🙂

breakfast: hard boiled egg, coffee with cream and brown sugar

lunch: totally passed that out – I was working at home (house chores + work on computer)

late- afternoon snack: 1 apple

dinner: fish with veggies, fried onions, and strawberry short-cake. Ok – I went out to dinner with a friend and that was an amazing, decent meal 🙂 Also very pampering; why did I eat the cake? it would be better without it, but hey..

late-night snack (added after the post): 2 small cucumbers. I feel a lot better if I do consume raw veggies. So I ate cucumbers even though I was not hungry. I kinda believe that they will neutralize (or reduce) the effect of the short cake I had at the dinner. Right or not, I cannot know 🙂

(added once again after the post): I also ate 4 slices of whole wheat bread and 40 grms of cheese late at night. I believe the cake increased my appetite – will be careful not to have desserts again 🙂

Exercise: walking 10 min in the morning, and 30 min at late evening after the dinner.

healthy life – style journal – Sept 18, 2015

I did not eat as much as I am supposed to today; gotta be more careful about not dropping the daily calories. Anyways, here is what I have done hopefully to improve my life – style:

Breakfast: forgot to have my breakfast with me again. this is a recurring theme. Not sure how to implement it as a habit. Coffee with brown sugar and creamer

Lunch: 1 can of fish, around 100 grms of peanuts. Coffee with creamer and brown sugar.

Dinner: 1 apple, stir fried leeks and the roasted chicken. I decided I could not eat another piece of roasted chicken as it is again…I must confess I could not eat the entire meal. The leeks are gone, but the chicken is still lingering. I am not sure what to do with it, except that I know I am not going to waste it.

Late-night snack (added later): Cucumber – my goodness; it was never that delicious. I needed something to take the taste of chicken out of my system – what is better than the refreshing cucumber sprinkled with salt? Yummy. Also cheese and 1 slice of whole bread. Okay – I know I keep eating the same things ad I certainly like cheese, but I really wanted to eat something that increases my daily calorie and I was not in the mood to cook. Cheese sandwich is a very practical option for me.

And just around the mid night I craved for sweets; yogurt with brown sugar. Would be better without the sugar, but hey; it was delicious 🙂

My lessons learnt: NEVER buy whole roasted chicken again; it is good in terms of down-regulating the appetite, but I cannot do this anymore. I will rather have pieces (like legs and thighs) and make meals out of them. At least these parts I am okay to eat.

Exercise: Walking; 10 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon, both of which were at high speed. good job 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Sept 17, 2015

I think about two things:

  1. If I need to lower my appetite, chicken is the best food for me (I am serious – try something you do not like very much, which is also a healthy protein and see yourself)
  2. Am I doing good recording my journal everyday? I feel like I am posting too many posts everyday. And the topics are so different. Not sure whether that is good or not..

Anyways, here is what I have done to improve my health today:

breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

lunch: did not have time to eat much – I was working on something. So I munched on roasted chickpeas. Green tea.

dinner: a piece of roasted chicken, left-over sauteed greens from yesterday, 1 slice of whole wheat bread, 50 grm of cheese

late-night snack (added later): 1 apple, 1/2 cucumber. Eyeing yogurt 🙂

The total calories I have consumed today is low. That is not good – they say I should have at least 1,200 cal/day; otherwise my body will think that it is starving and will start storing fat. I gotta be careful about under-eating.

Exercise: 10 min walk in the morning and 30 min talk in the afternoon. The afternoon walk was not slow and made me sweat. That is good 🙂

healthy life – style journal, Sept 16, 2015

Not too bad so far 🙂

breakfast: forgotten to take my breakfast with me again. So only coffee with creamer and brown sugar (three cups)

Lunch: two cans of fish, vegetable soup, and a slice of white bread

Late afternoon snack: none

Dinner (updated after posted): roasted chicken and sauteed greens with olive oil, onion, and dash of chili pepper. One apple. Since I ate the legs, now it is the breasts of the roasted chicken I am left with – the part that absolutely lowers my appetite. I estimate that I will completely eat it within the next two days. I will not waste it. I should not forget to give my thanks to this chicken who died to nourish my body.

Late-night snack (added after the post): yogurt – yummy 🙂

Exercise: walking 30 min in the afternoon – considering it was a rainy and misty day, not bad – well done 🙂

healthy life-style journal – Sept 15, 2015

This is the end of my so-called “healthy life-style plan” week. That means I took measurements to see any progress.

My experience with measuring my waist and hips is that it is tricky and does not match with what the scale says. Thus,  from now on I am sticking with the measurement of my weight.

Today my weight is 207 pounds. It is 3 pounds less than two weeks ago. I am not overly excited about this (my weight can fluctuate 2-3 pounds within a day – not sure what the reason is; thinking either my scale is not sensitive/accurate enough or my body retains water – I guess both of these are quite possible). I need to see the same weight over a week to finally become confident about what my weight is.  Therefore I am not treating this as a weight loss; rather I see it as a positive sign that at least I did not gain weight this past week 🙂

What have I eaten today?

Breakfast: one hard boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Lunch: two apples

Late-afternoon snack: roasted chicken.

Dinner (updated after posted): 2 slices of whole wheat bread, around 100 grms of cheese, and raw lo bok. Lo bok is white radish often found in Asian stores. I am fond of it because of its juicy texture and light taste. I have been thinking; it is good that nowadays I am not having salad, but rather consuming veggies as they are; overall I consume less olive oil this way.

Late-night snack (added after posted): yogurt – good job 🙂

Exercise: None – it was raining today, so I took the cab/bus.

healthy life – style journal, Sept 14, 2015

A relatively better day, but it is not over yet – so I am not keeping my hopes high. Nevertheless here is the account of today:

Breakfast: one hard-boiled egg, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Lunch: munched on peanuts and roasted chickpeas (give it a try – they are not fatty but quite filling; lots of fiber)

Late afternoon snack: 2 cups of coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Dinner: roasted chicken. Chicken is not my best type of animal protein – I like beef more. This one was purchased from a store; I usually consume it in around 4-5 days. Honestly, I do not like the chicken breast at all, which is supposed to be the healthiest part. Anyways, I am planning to have salad later.

Exercise: walking 10 min in the morning; 30 min in the afternoon. Both walking at a faster speed – hoping to increase the energy expenditure a little bit this way,

Things I have done right so far today: having something for the breakfast, walking faster, and roasted chicken (lots of protein)

Late-night snack (added after the post): 2 slices of whole wheat bread and around 100 grms of cheese. Did i mention I love cheese? Hmm. Nevertheless, two things are clear: a) chicken seriously down-regulates my appetite; and b) I am not reacting that badly to eating bread as long as it is not >5 slices a day and as long as the calories from the food consumed during the entire day is not huge. Okay – I have made peace with eating a small amount of bread finally.

healthy life – style journal, Sept 13, 2015

Turn of events (see the end).

Breakfast: Forgot to have breakfast at home and directly went to the cafe. What did I get? A bagel with cream cheese, one large cup of coffee with cream and sugar. I do not know why I ordered bagel again, but one thing is clear – if I do not have breakfast at home, or if I do not bring it to office, I either eat unhealthy stuff (like bagel) or do not eat at all (at the office).

I do not know why I do not have an habit of having breakfast at home.

Lunch: I went out to shop so I missed to eat something at home. I ate nuts (cashew – yummy but also fatty I assume).

Dinner: Chicken noodle soup, 4 slices of whole wheat bread, cheese, tomato and red radish. I did not feel like cooking something or preparing salad.

Bread and bagel have found their existence in my diet once again.

Anyways, enough with the rant.

Maybe I am doing it wrong; maybe I should not feel frustrated only because I ate bread or bagels. Maybe what I should be focusing is what I have done right. Intuitively rewards are much more motivating than punishment. Hence;

What did I do right today? Eating raw veggies (at dinner), protein (cream cheese at breakfast, cheese at dinner). Cashews are supposed to have protein, fiber, and fat (hopefully good type). Since I did not have salad but rather had the veggies as they are, that means I did not have the calories that would otherwise come from the olive oil (I always have olive oil in my salad).

ok – now this feels better.

exercise: walking, 10 min in the morning, 15 min in the afternoon. better than nothing.

healthy life-style journal – Sept 12, 2015

Yesterday late-nigh snack: 1 apple, two slices of whole wheat bread, cheese, yogurt with 2 tbs of brown sugar. I was craving for sweet yesterday night. Try yogurt with brown sugar; it does not dissolve much and you can feel it 🙂

Today – breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, 2 cups of coffee with cream and sugar

Lunch: I had a late lunch today; 1 hard-boiled egg. I thought that would be enough till dinner (I was working and did not want to spend time to have a large lunch). Yet, it just made me more hungry… 2 chicken legs (boiled), 1 bowl of chicken noodle soup with lemon and black pepper (delicious).

Dinner: White rice with yogurt. I over-ate it – I do not usually eat rice. When I eat, I eat multiple plates…

Late-night snack: 2 apples. At least I did not eat too much late at night. That is a success 🙂 Also no bread or bagel today.. hmm. that was a great day even though I ate too much white rice.

On thing goes well another thing not so well. Well..

Exercise: 10 min walk in the morning – that is all.

healthy life-style journal – Sept 11, 2015

Okay; getting back to eating raw veggies (as salad), but still no breakfast or lunch today..

yesterday – late night snack: cheese, yogurt, and 5 slices of whole wheat bread (argh..)

Today: breakfast: none (forgot to bring with me to office). 2 cups of coffee with creamer and brown sugar.

Lunch: none.

Late afternoon snack: 40 grms of nuts, 1 apple, 1 cup of green tea (yay! something healthy and relaxing)

Dinner: 6 pieces of battered fish with lots of lemon juice; salad with 1 tomato, 1/2 (raw) zucchini, 2 celery sticks, lettuce, and olive oil. This is the third time I am eating raw zucchini in salad and I can tell you it does not have much of a taste. good in terms of having fiber I guess. But would not recommend it as a salad material to anyone, including myself.

I am preparing my hard-boiled eggs now to be consumed at (or, as) breakfast for tomorrow and the following mornings. I thought if I do not have them, tomorrow I can go back to eating bagels for breakfast. refined carbs need to go..

Exercise: 30 min walk in the afternoon

healthy life-style journal – Sept 10, 2015

I am doing better today after my burst-out in the last two days.

Yesterday – dinner: yep, I have eaten the pastry filled with blueberries 😦

Late-night snack: 2 hard-boiled eggs, 5 slices of whole wheat bread, cheese

Today – breakfast: I forgot again to bring breakfast to my office; 4 cups of coffee with cream and sugar (I really needed a large amount of creamy coffee today)

Lunch: none

Dinner: Stir-fried leek with sesame seeds, olive oil, hot sauce, and soya sauce. It was delicious – a simple but tasty meal.

Slowly I am getting back to my healthy eating plan, but not having breakfast or lunch (which is a long-time habit for me) is not good. Gotta plan better.

Exercise: walking 30 min in the afternoon.

Eye-care: I strain my eyes by reading a lot and for extended periods of time. I think limiting to use my reading glasses will help my eyes a little bit. So I finally come up with the idea of increasing the zoom on the monitor of my laptop. I can see things away from me and my eyes adjusting just fine.

healthy life-style journal – Sept 9, 2015

After learning my defeat against losing weight yesterday (I know; it has just been a week that I started my healthy-eating strategy, but would it hurt not to gain weight during this time?? No…), I went down big time. I am not giving up yet, but this is really demotivating. I promised myself this to be an honest journey, so here are what I have done to further gain weight since yesterday night (irony is high here):

Yesterday dinner: 1 big sweet pastry filled with apple, presumably very unhealthy, purchased from the convenience store. I am not sure what else I ate; did I have salad? probably. eh..

yesterday late-night snack: 1 apple, 1 egg with 2 slices of whole wheat bread, and maybe other stuff that I do not remember right now. The only good stuff I have done was to drink a cup of green tea – it was delicious.

Today: breakfast; forgot my breakfast – munched on peanuts at the office. Coffee with creamer and brown sugar as usual.

Lunch: none

Late-afternoon snack: another apple-filled pastry… In case you are wondering, I bought another one filled with blueberries and am very likely to eat it tonite….

Dinner: not planning anything right now, meaning it is going to be unhealthy; see above.

Exercise: 30 min walking in the afternoon (at least I did not let this one go).

I am not writing this to be a bad role model for those who would like to lose weight by eating right. Please DO NOT eat like this. I am just frustrated with many other stuff in life right now. It is not an excellent excuse, but I know that is an expected hurdle that I will eventually overcome. Over time..

Till then.

healthy life-style journal – Sept 8, 2015

Ahem… It has been a week that I started to try to eat better; less bread and bagel, more and diverse salad and protein resources.

I cannot complain about these changes; they seem to be good for me. It is just that I am not sure whether this eating style works for me. Why? Because based on my measurements, it seems like I actually got bigger 🙂

My shoulders and my waist seem to have expanded 2 cms and my hips 1 cm since last week.

Ahem… Ahem…

Gotta be a little bit more careful then – maybe eliminate extra calories (e.g. limit olive oil in the salad)?

Arggh. Anyways, here is what I have done to live healthier:

Yesterday – late night snack: 1 apple, yogurt, 3 slices of whole wheat bread

Today: breakfast; 50 grm of unseasoned peanuts, coffee with creamer and brown sugar

Lunch: a can of sardines in tomato sauce, green tea

Late afternoon snack: 75 grm of peanut

Dinner: large salad with lettuce, red radish, pepper, zucchini, and olive oil. This is the second time I am eating raw zucchini – I must say the idea is weird but raw zucchini tastes just fine.

Exercise: walking 30 min in the afternoon.

healthy life-style journal – Sept 7, 2015

Yesterday dinner: I did not eat the salad I had planned yesterday; I rather had one tomato, 5 red radish, and 3 slices of whole wheat bread in lieu of salad; I felt not like preparing salad.

Yesterday late-night snack: 1 apple, yogurt

Today – breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with brown sugar. Since no cafe is open today (labor day), I brewed my own coffee and had it with no cream.

Lunch: Lazy cauliflower meal (recipe can be found here) 🙂  I completely made it up and I am glad I have, as it turned out to be an awesome meal. Very surprising as cauliflower has never been among my favorite veggies. Anyways, I also had yogurt at lunch. Additionally, I  craved for garlic and ate 4 big cloves together with the meal. Yum. Seriously. If eaten with meal, it does not upset my stomach and while its smell always increases my appetite, considering its health benefits, it was well worth it 🙂

Late-afternoon snack: Left-over lazy cauliflower meal

Dinner: I am planning a large green salad with tuna, spices, and olive oil (modified this a little bit while preparing it; added white onion, celery sticks, a can of corn kernel, and 1/2 lemon juice. It turned out to be quite hearty and stuffy).

Exercise: None.

Eye care: I really need to prevent straining my eyes by wearing the reading glasses for long times. Today while I continued to read and write, I hardly used my reading glasses. Trying to give my eyes a break from the glasses. Hope to massage them at night with tea bags.

healthy life-style journal, Sept 6, 2015

Yesterday – late night snack: yesterday night was another over-eating night. I was hungry so ate 2 hard-boiled eggs, cucumber, 2.5 slices of whole-wheat bread, and 2 table spoons of olive oil….

Yesterday night – eye care: I have reading glasses and since I use them a lot my eyes ache after a while. I remembered that putting wet and warm tea bags (best after brewing your tea) over eyes for 5-10 min would soothe them. I did this three times yesterday. It certainly is very relaxing to eyes.

Today – breakfast: 2 hard-boiled eggs, 1 cup of coffee with brown sugar and cream. Did I mention I eat a lot of eggs and I should change this? Yep…

Lunch: went out to a cafe with my friends. As a result I have a heartier lunch than I would have if I was by myself. Turkey, cheese, arugula, and cranberry sauce sandwich on baget, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar. And a little tart – I could not resist the tart, even though I usually do not eat sweets…

Late afternoon snack: 1 apple

Dinner (planned): 2 medium size meatballs, salad with tomato, raw radish, lettuce, onion, coriander, and celery sticks with olive oil.

Exercise: 30 min in the afternoon. I did some house chores this evening and as such did not notice the time. I went out shopping but the store was closed. I wanted to try another one on walking distance. While the second store was also closed, this helped me with walking around 30 min. Yay!

healthy life-style journal – Sept 5, 2015

Doing good in some parts, not so good in others 🙂

Late-night snack: 1 apples, 3 table spoons of sunflower seed (I love seeds and nuts, but I need to remind myself that they are not only healthy but also are packed of calories). Nevertheless, I am glad I did not eat too much yesterday night (not that I was not tempted to).

Today: breakfast: 1 hard boiled egg, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar. Today was the second time I have been to my favorite cafe but did not eat their delicious bagels! Good, good, very good 🙂

Lunch: None – I was too busy decluttering the house. Gotta have lunch no matter what.

Late-afternoon snack: 1 apple

Dinner: Salad with tomato, lettuce, raw cabbage, cucumber, radish and olive oil. Meatball and cabbage meal with 1 onion, black-bean sauce and olive oil.

Exercise: 10 min in the morning – in addition I have been working at home non-stop for 6 hours. I hope that counts as some calories consumed.

healthy life-style journal – Sept 4, 2015

Yesterday – late nigh snack: yogurt, apple, and 5 table spoons of sunflower seed

Yesterday – super late snack: 2 hard boiled eggs, 2 table spoons of olive oil, cucumber, and 3 slices of whole wheat bread!! What happened? I can tell you what; I went to bed and could not sleep. Came down and made myself pacified and sleepy by eating…. That is something that I have been doing for many years; it is not healthy at all… The only remedy for a good night sleep is to make the body tired… So where is my exercise?

Today – breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, 2 cups of coffee with brown sugar and creamer. I should find alternatives to egg; too much of nothing is good.

Lunch: none (was working)

Late afternoon snack: around 100 grms of non-seasoned peanuts

Dinner (planning): 6 pieces of battered fish pieces (frozen, cooked in the oven) with a generous amount of lemon juice, a large salad with tomato, 1/2 avocado, a big (I mean really big) green onion, lettuce, and olive oil.

I still consume the majority of the calories after evening (i.e. starting with dinner). It is good that I am eating some food before dinner now, but eventually I will have to have hearty breakfast and lunch during the day and reduce over-eating in the afternoons/nights.

Exercise: walking only – 30 min in the afternoon

healthy life-style journal – Sept 3, 2015

More or less I am keeping up with my new eating strategy, albeit not perfectly. And I guess that is okay too because I do not wish to have a restricted, straining diet that after a while will prompt me to eat more and worse kind of food: my psychology and the long-term sustainability of this eating style are also important. So I am taking it quite easy.

Yesterday – late night snack: I overdid this: around 150 grs of cheese, another bowl of green bean with minced beef meal, and one apple. Sleeping without consuming carbs (such as bread) was, however, not difficult.

Today – breakfast: 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 cup of coffee with cream and brown sugar. The interesting thing is this: I went to my favorite cafe whose bagels I love. But I did not crave to eat one today, that gave me confidence and a sense of accomplishment 🙂

Late lunch: 1 slice of whole wheat bread, mashed avocado (1/2), and cheese

Afternoon snack: None

Dinner (planned): A large salad of tomato, pepper, coriander, and lettuce with olive oil and sunflower seeds. The left over meal from yesterday.

Exercise: 10 min walking in the morning only 😦

15 random facts about me :)

By the encouragement of thesmallc, here I am writing some facts about myself. Thesmallc is a great writer (with no reservation I say this); she has a very powerful and genuine pen and incredible insight into life and cancer. Absolutely one of my favorite bloggers (among many others).

Anyways, here are 15 facts about me; surprise, surprise 🙂

  1. Until I started blogging, my primary hobby was to read books. Books are still my favorite items around the house, but blogging has changed me somehow. In a positive way I hope 🙂
  2. I happen to be a bad cook – no question about that. I am not proud of it but that is what it is 🙂
  3. I have a great job that pays a decent salary, yet since I have spent the majority of my life at schools and with training, I have little accumulated for my retirement, which I regret real good. Be smart and start saving early! Whatever you make, save a portion of it for your retirement. And start doing this early.
  4. I have got a PhD.
  5. English is not my native language (some of you already sensed that, did you not?) 🙂
  6. Even though I dislike it very much, I keep cleaning my home and doing laundry every weekend 98% of the time. I admire my consistency in this regard.
  7. The first story I wrote was named “Joe and his dog”. I was 7 years old, penned it down on a small blue covered pocket notebook that I still remember…. The story, as you can guess, remained unfinished.
  8. I have a very serious look; scary if you will. Not that I mean to. Unless I smile, a lot of people think that I am angry or pissed off. I am not angry or pissed off. Well, at least the majority of the time 🙂
  9. When I was a child, music was my greatest interest. Till now, I tried to learn how to play the following instruments: mandolin, flute, and violin. I must say violin is the most elegant, most challenging, and the most admirable one for me. Of course I have not excelled at any of these instruments 🙂
  10. I am a very practical person – can find a temporary fix for almost anything in a split second (unless I am stressed; then the opposite occurs) 🙂
  11. My stress levels can get real high. I do not like that at all. I found exercise is the best remedy, yet I have been too lazy too tired in the last few years to exercise.
  12. I started martial arts at the age of 35; like many other things in my life I was not good at it but it was very good for me! I would recommend everyone, regardless of their age, to give it a try (should they be interested in) at a safe and serious school (i.e. dedicated to the art but not to giving belts, earning money, or kicking the sh.t out of someone else).
  13. I loved opera, not listening to or watching it, but singing it. I was not good at singing opera either (like many of the things in my life I never perfected this skill), but giving it a try has always made me excited and happy 🙂
  14. I have read a lot about leadership and management; I am more suitable for management positions than for the leadership positions (who would follow me??) 🙂
  15. I think my job is the best thing that ever happened to me (other than my family). It keeps my mind working, I like what I do, and it excites me (yet I still dream about retirement; sigh… 🙂 )

And as I already said this in a comment at thesmallc’s blog, I have to make an effort to know which direction is right or left 🙂 All the cab drivers I put into wrong roads/streets, please forgive me! 🙂

cheers everyone

challenging myself – updated list – May

Ok – now that I have some success (!) at integrating some of the challenges I have assigned to myself, it is time to expand it a little bit. I will keep almost all of them, but the new ones (in red font) will just enhance my efforts (green fonts my updates/experience on challenges).

Challenges:

challenge 1: take the bus (not the cab) – get up at 8.15am to catch the bus. getting used to it 🙂

challenge 2: eat better and healthy – cut out the carbs and consume more veggies and fruits

challenge 3: walk an extra 30 min at the weekends – I got it 🙂 with this beautiful weather, staying inside does not feel good.

challenge 4: do not buy books for two months. I think I did buy a couple of books since then, but no. Not unless I feel the extreme need to pamper myself, no new books for two months.

challenge 5: cut out the bagel breakfast- one bagel/breakfast. Could not do that yet. Tomorrow is another day – I will see.

challenge 6: do grocery shopping as required and buy small amounts – many stuff perished in my fridge so far – what a sad waste. Going well. I am not interested in limiting my diet, only to not waste. So far it has been going well.

challenge 7: start listening to music and relaxing 20 min a day; this is done easily now thanks to my computer and youtube.

challenge 8: drink at least one cup of tea a day. I easily and lovingly do this during the week.

challenge 9: get up in the morning and smile to yourself and hum a song. well, remembered to do only a few times. Made a mental note to do more often.

challenge 10: look outside the window at the office three times a day – enjoy the view and relax. This has been one of the most consistent one. what a wonderful idea. With no ego I can say my office has the best view among all on my floor. Plus, when I am at home I get to enjoy the view from my yard.

challenge 11: record the progress in these areas in breaking the routine or joy journal categories. Not necessarily in these pages, but I kept posting them somewhere in this blog, good job 🙂

challenge 12: increase the contribution made to the RRSP account. Nope. This is not happening. This gotta wait until my chequeing account moves to a positive balance.

challenge 13: during the day remember to smile. oh well.. sometimes. Just sometimes.

challenge 14: lose 15 pounds in two months – record weight and food consumed every day. Ok. This is hard to do but I am trying. By means of limiting bread mostly. There is a 5 pounds difference, but hey that happened before, only to gain again in a couple of days later. I am not keeping my hopes high re; this challenge. I will get excited when I lose 10 pounds.

challenge 15: stick to the plans – I have done these before and I can do it again. I am. to my best. I am so motivated nowadays that I am increasing these challenges today.

New challenges (as of today):

challenge 16: comb the hair everyday. Mornings are great when I usually have a couple of extra minutes before I leave for the bus.

challenge 17: spare 5 min every day to breathe – just to breathe. 

challenge 18: apply sunscreen every morning.

challenge 19: apply moisturiser every night.

challenge 20: every week, eat two different food from last week – whether veggies or fruits or others. Change the brands or types of canned food or others I regularly consume.

challenge 21: take the stairs at the office (2 storeys) at least twice a week.

challenge 22: write the joy journal every day; no matter how dry or repeating it may feel. It always makes me feel good.

walking is a joy!

Walking is the best exercise that I can integrate into my life; it is free, it has no time limit, it does not require gym membership or special clothes, it is relatively safe, and very enjoyable if you can also take time to look around, especially in these beautiful Spring days.

I was an avid walker, until I moved to my current city. Day or night whenever I felt like bored or down, I walked. I walked for hours, sometime more than once a day. I walked to the work, I walked to the shopping centres, and I walked to everywhere I can think about. That is the nice thing about living in downtown, which makes it safe and also practical during winter (snow clearance is usually a lot better).

At my current city, the situation is a little bit different. Walking during winter is usually is not fun but I try; during the winter months, I am keen about walking in the afternoons, rain, snow, or shine from work to home. Unless it gets icy or if there is a storm outside. This year I have done it really well and I am very pleased with myself. It is not easy to walk whenever I would like to though due to the ice and snow banks that stay on the ground/street for quite sometime. A nice pair of water and skid-resistant boots made my life easy during the winter.

But I must says it is the Spring that brings the joy of walking. The heavy winter coats are gone, it is warm and dry, and there is so many nice houses, yards, and gardens to see along the way. The energy is amazing and makes me want to walk more. I would like to walk in the afternoons and the weekends as much as I can. There are I am sure nice paths, nice streets that I can explore to make this an unboring activity- walking along the same way and seeing the same things over and over again is not very interesting to me. So, let’s start exploring. Maybe I can also take my camera with me to make it a more interesting experience.

challenging myself

I have been thinking about changes that will enhance my life, my health, and my financial health for some time. I have not done anything substantial yet, which finally came to a point that the entire lack of implementation of changes started to make me unhappy with myself.

I do not need to be unhappy about myself.

The main problem of mine is that even though I know what can work, I have the confidence that they will work (I have done similar changes before), I just have a substantial need of pampering myself. The need to relax; the need to take a break from everything; the need to feel good; the need to not constrain myself. The more I pamper myself, the longer the issues remain unresolved, the heavier they accumulate as an emotional baggage.

In other words, pampering myself  = inaction = bothering myself more over the long run.

I do not need these.

From this morning on I invited myself to several challenges:

challenge 1: take the bus (not the cab) – get up at 8.15am to catch the bus.

challenge 2: eat better and healthy – cut out the carbs and consume more veggies

challenge 3: walk an extra 30 min at the weekends

challenge 4: do not buy books for two months

challenge 5: cut out the bagel breakfast- one bagel/breakfast

challenge 6: do grocery shopping as required and buy small amounts – many stuff perished in my fridge so far – what a sad waste.

challenge 7: start listening to music and relaxing 20 min a day.

challenge 8: drink at least one cup of tea a day

challenge 9: get up in the morning and smile to yourself and hum a song

challenge 10: look outside the window at the office three times a day – enjoy the view and relax

challenge 11: record the progress in these areas in breaking the routine or joy journal categories

challenge 12: increase the contribution made to the RRSP account

challenge 13: during the day remember to smile

challenge 14: lose 15 pounds in two months – record weight and food consumed every day

challenge 15: stick to the plans – I have done these before and I can do it again

future goals

It is an unremarkable day in the sense that nothing highly positive or highly negative happened. It is an unremarkable, but a nice, pleasant day. I think that is a fair conclusion.

While writing this, I wondered about what I expected from my day? From myself?

I cannot possibly control or influence the climate, what will others do or say, what kind of news or emails I will get. I have nothing to do but accept them as they appear. Ok.

I can however influence my life, my thoughts, actions, and feelings. When I think about this, it is so powerful…

What would I like to do with my life?

For a long time now I have not had long-term goals in life. I am not sure whether this is a good thing or not. I used to have goals (such as better work, better living conditions, better life style, etc.) and thinking about them and working through these goals were exciting, interesting, and fulfilling.

I am not sure whether my lack of future goals, at least in terms of better job or living conditions, are because I attained them. I am happy with my job and would not like to change it unless something extraordinary would happen. I have not been even thinking about applying for jobs for some years. It is true that I had reacted to the city I am living in now for 6-7 years for quite a long time (weather, grey sky, its being a small city and as such can get boring… etc.), but in the last one year or so (since I bought my house), this feeling also left me; I do not care about the weather, the sky, or how boring it can be. Maybe I got used to be bored. Maybe that is the main reason. because realistically, yes I am bored of doing the same thing, eating the same (limited types of food), seeing the same streets, and shopping at the same malls.

I have had goals related to my life-style though, which I somehow could not implement yet.

1. Weight situation: I have been thinking about losing the extra weight that I gained since I moved here. 30 pounds to be exact. It is quite a bit of fat that I need to say good-bye to. And, nothing much has been happening (at least permanently). The recent loss of 5 pounds is well received, but I keep wonder whether it is permanent and continuous.

2. Eating better: I think I am eating less and less healthy. Less fruits, less veggies. This mostly happened after I moved to my house. I am not sure what is prompting it; considering that I have a bigger and more functional kitchen. I have no idea…

3. Exercise: Nope; since I came here, my exercise levels dropped to maybe 5% of what it was used to be. In terms of gym/health club/cardio exercise and walking. I used to walk a lot. Now, if I can walk half an hour (from office to home, for example), I congratulate myself. Will the spring/summer help? I think so. Our winters are quite harsh, that is for sure, where we have a lot of snow. Since the snow is lifted off our streets, I have been more active. I think I will be hopeful about the coming months and take the opportunity to walk more. Even going to the shopping malls, browsing the stores, and walking around are better than sitting on the couch.

4. Being happier and relaxer: When compared to past I am. Interesting and appreciated. So this one goal actually seems to be attained! Awesome 🙂

So, the question I would like to ask to myself is then how I can use my power to direct my life and my life-styles to a form that would please me?

Something, a great opportunity, to think about.

breaking the routine – March 22, 2015

I have not done anything differently today, but I am aware the things I have to change; here is a short list of things I would like to do:

1. spend less time with the computer

2. everyday eat healthy; every single day eat raw vegetables

3. walk more, take the stairs at the office, start the yoga again

4. think less about issues; breathe and relax

5. stretch everyday

6. each weekend, do something you do not usually do. Go to different stores and explore; buy a new book and read; cook something new; go to a movie; start a hobby; call someone I have not talked in a long time; write more poems or stories; shop at a different mall.

7. everyday; smile more; take a break at work; comb your hair (yes I usually do not do that..); bring lunch in; enjoy any activity other than sitting at the couch; engage in more meaningful activities; give hope to someone.

8. be okay with the idea of going to bed earlier so that I can get up early, too.

9. laugh more; sing more; relax more.

10. do something good for your body every..single..day..

Sasha – part 4

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Life with anxiety forces you to change. I tried very hard to do my best to relief my symptoms. First thing first, I started eating a little bit healthier. It nourished my mind maybe more than my body – there was a little bit excitement and satisfaction in putting the effort to go to the stores, get fresh produce and healthy food; I had felt like taking care of myself, having some kind of superficial control in my anxious life. It helped.

Then, I started exercising – similar to the better eating attempts, that idea was mostly from the books I have read about anxiety. It was not easy at first, but I somehow managed to start cardio activities. Kick-boxing to be exact. It really works; a surprising fact. They say it is endorphins or something, the feel-good hormones and natural pain-killers that are released during physical activity that elevate the mood. Cool. For me, no levels were enough to make me feel better though. But with activity, I at least had the chance to focus my mind on my body and environment – or somebody would come and kick me at the head :). I needed to force myself to focus on something.

Yet, one cannot live at the gym and doing nothing meant listening to my mind. And it was telling me terrible stories. No, I could not be still. So I walked. I walked any time, any day. No rain, no snow storm, no work waiting for me did defer me from walking. Day and night, whenever I had “it”, the feeling of suffocation anxiety gave me; the feeling of desperately looking for a way to escape from it; the feeling of “what will happen to me?” ; the feeling of seeing no no-anxiety day in future; the feeling of having no hope whatsoever to return back to what I was prior to anxiety, I threw myself out. I often cried, too, out of misery.

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Sasha – part 4

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