Monday, July 5, 2010

Oh Where, Oh Where has my Metabolism Gone? Oh where,oh Where could it be?

So, on March 21st, I finished the Marathon two days before my birthday! Cool, huh?! It was great! But that meant, no more strenuous training! No more strenuous training!...and no more strenuous training! Hallelujah!! (Though, you know I loved it!) My fifth Marathon! How exciting! But wait a minute! What happened?! This isn't fair! What is this?! I continued to walk/run in the mornings and walk/run further on Saturdays, just not as far as I did when training, but something strange happened almost IMMEDIATELY after the Marathon!!! I stopped training AND had a birthday and within a week I had gained three pounds!!! WAIT A MINUTE....!! ..THIS ISN'T SUPPOSE TO BE HAPPENING....!!!....WHERE DID MY METABOLISM GO??!!!.....NO FAIR!!!!...O.K..O.K...maybe the three pounds wasn't just a result of no more training and my metabolism slowing down...Maybe, just maybe, in the three months of strenuous training, maybe I ate more than I usually do and more of the things I usually don't because I knew I was working out harder and would work it off, and maybe, just maybe, now that the Marathon was over I was still eating like that. Maybe. And, maybe, just maybe, I wasn't keeping a daily food log while I was training because,.. well,... I just didn't, O.K.?! And so now maybe now after the Marathon I am clueless of what I'm really eating because I've gotten out of the habit of writing things down every day and for me NOT keeping a daily food log equals WEIGHT GAIN!...when I'm not training, that is.... But, here it is July 5Th and I'm still struggling! It would be so much easier if I just had my 'before Marathon/during training' metabolism rate back! Oh where, Oh where has my metabolism gone? Oh where Oh where could it be?

"Remember when you could diet for a few days and drop an easy ten pounds? Well, nowadays it's not so easy. Oh sure, you're eating less than you did back in your twenties and making a habit of passing on dessert and that mid-afternoon candy bar, but for some reason your a few dress sizes larger. And the pounds are piling on. Here's what's happening: your metabolism - how your body converts food into energy and then burns that energy as calories - is slowing down. This is a natural process that begins at about age 30. From then on, your body burns energy about 2-4 percent slower every ten years. So fewer calories are burned and more are stored as fat.....Maximize Your Metabolism: 1- Step up the pace. An easy way to burn more calories in the same amount of time is to put a little more speed into your current work out... 2 - Go longer. If you're already working out at your top speed, don't go any faster but try to go longer... 3- Work your arms and legs. Exercises that vigorously work both arms and legs are better fat burners than those that involve only your legs...4 - Don't skip meals....5- Exercise after you eat...eating gives your metabolism a boost...6 - Spice up your life....spicy foods...may shift your metabolism into high gear. 7- Stay away from stimulants...caffeine, alcohol, or other stimulants may raise your metabolic rate but once they're out of your system, your metabolism crashes back to normal or below. 8- Have your thyroid checked. (excerpt from

If you too might be wondering where your metabolism went, let's top wondering and get busy!....or busier!

To Everything there is a Season

Any of these statements sound familiar?:

* As soon as the 4th of July is over I'm going on a diet.
* As soon as Labor day is over, just in time for Fall,..that's the perfect time to go on a diet...that is exactly what I'm going to do.
* Right after Halloween I'm going to lose this weight!
* After Thanksgiving and Christmas, right after New Years, I'm going on a diet and FINALLY lose this weight!
* One more Valentine's chocolate and then I'm going on a diet.
* This is it!..the last Easter egg then I'm going to lose this weight!
* Memorial Day! soon as the family reunion is over I'm going back to Weight Watchers!
* Fourth of July again?! Time goes so fast! I'm finally going to go on a diet as soon as I finish these barbecue ribs!

TIME'S UP! To everything there is a season and the season of excuses with regard to losing weight and being healthy is over! Aren't you tired of making excuses?! I thought so! You know that a dieting mentality will not usher you into a lifestyle of health and wellness; but making different choices, daily, as a lifestyle will. You know that depriving yourself of all of your favorite foods isn't the answer to losing weight and keeping it off; but exercising moderation and eating small portions consistently will keep those unwanted pounds under control. You know that being sedentary doesn't offer any benefits AT ALL; but exercising strenuously for just thirty minutes per day can do wonders for your body, soul, and mind.

"To everything there is a season."* This is the season where you take control. No more waiting for the next holiday. No more waiting for your friend to go to the gym with you. No more waiting for the kids to grow up. No more being embarrassed because you're the only one that says 'No thank you' to a second dessert. This is the season when you decide that you are worth keeping a daily food journal. You are worth a brisk 30 minute walk every day. You are worth 6-8 hours of sleep every night. You are worth trying a new vegetable or new fruit every month. You are worth totally 'blowing it' some days but getting right back on track the very next day! You are worth the struggles that being healthy and fit often bring, and you will overcome them and learn from your mistakes so that you can enjoy a lifestyle of health and wellness.

This is a new season of your life! Welcome!

(Eccl 3:1)

Friday, January 29, 2010


I just registered for the L.A. Marathon! IT’S ON NOW!! I am so excited! My adrenaline starts pumping at just the thought of the experience! My training has been going well. I am on target and right where I wanted to be with seven weeks to go. I am so looking forward to this event! It’s a new route this year AND the date has been moved to the week of my birthday! So-o-o this is my birthday present to myself! Cool, huh?! So, what physical activity gets your adrenaline pumping?!! Maybe you look forward to a brisk walk!…or several laps in the pool……or an exciting game of tennis……or a challenging aerobics class……or a vibrant hike……or a fun bicycle ride. Physicians at the Mayo Clinic say, “At least 30 minutes of daily aerobic activity, such as walking, bicycling, or swimming, can help you live longer and healthier…aerobic exercise affects your heart, lungs, and blood flow…..Aerobic activity can help you: 1. Keep excess pounds at bay. 2. Increase your stamina. 3. Ward off viral illnesses. 4. Reduce health risks including obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, stroke and certain types of cancer. 5. Manage chronic conditions. 6. Strengthen your heart. 7. Keep your arteries clear. 8. Boost your mind. 9. Stay active and independent, as you get older. 10. Live longer. People who participate in regular aerobic exercise appear to live longer than those who don’t exercise regularly. …..” Thirty minutes a day! That’s it! But then, you knew that already didn’t you? You are worth 30 minutes a day, aren’t you? Or, are those household chores more important?….or the PTA meeting…..or the event at church….or the family gathering…….or the hair and nail shop appointment…….or the new movie that’s out……….or overtime at work……..or the feel of the crisp, clean linen on your bed……or shopping at the mall… or hanging out with the fellas……Hmmm…….As always, the choice is ours! “I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.” Deut 30:19. (And you thought this was just all about you.)

See you at the finish line! I solicit your prayers!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Different Perspective

In a devotional I read this morning, with regard to the innkeeper who escorted Joseph and Mary to his stable because he had no more rooms available in his inn, the author said, “While some describe the innkeeper as an example of uncaring, sinful mankind who rejected the Savior…’I truly believe that Almighty God used the innkeeper as the arranger for a healthier place than the crowded inn – a place of privacy.” Hmm…that’s a different perspective, isn’t it?

Perhaps that’s all we need for 2010 – a different perspective. No New Year’s Resolutions. No unrealistic goals without any real desire to obtain them. No lofty ambitions only meant to impress others; just a different perspective; a different set of eyes; a new way of seeing things.

Perhaps in 2010 when we look in the mirror we will be honest about what we see. Now, that would be different!

Perhaps in 2010 we will admit that there are certain foods that we just need to abstain from if we are going to be in good health. That’s a switch!

Perhaps in 2010 we will stop lying about our age, be grateful that we are alive and well, and do what we can do to be in good health. That’s radical!

Perhaps in 2010 we will consider that ‘balanced’ and ‘smaller proportions’ does not mean ‘never again’ and ‘hardly anything’. Amazing!

Perhaps in 2010 we will receive the wonderful flavor of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean meats as earth’s treasures rather than earth’s medicine. Oh, I like that!

Perhaps in 2010 we will be grateful that we can put one foot in front of the other and take a brisk 30 minute walk each day (broken up into 10 minute increments if necessary) rather than see it as a consequence for an offense we must have committed in our teen years. That WOULD truly be a new perspective!

Perhaps in 2010 we will realize that getting enough rest at night (6-8 hours), and taking lunch breaks, and taking earned vacation days don’t equate to being unproductive and lazy, but means we care enough about ourselves to take care of ourselves. OUCH! THAT ONE HURT!

As with Joseph and Mary, I trust that in 2010 we will accept a ‘healthier place’. Making choices that are good for our health consistently may not look good on the outside, but my oh my, the results are life sustaining!

Enjoy your new perspective!

A Heavenly Conversation

The Son: Father, you look troubled. What is it?

The Father: It is that time of year when so many of my children will declare that they will make better choices for their physical well-being in the coming year,
but so much of what they say will simply be lip-service.

The Son: (always the intercessor) Oh, come now, Father, they are sincere, and they do mean well, but it can be extremely difficult to undo years and years of poor habits.

The Father: “Extremely difficult”….,Hmmm…would that be on the same level as the
Red Sea that I parted?.....Or, perhaps the Jericho wall that went tumbling
down like children toy building blocks?

The Son: Father, you know what I mean. They are faced with so many distractions and temptations and lack of time.

The Father: ..and lack of true desire…..Son, there are so many little things that can be done, such as parking further from entrances, cutting back on desserts, walking 30 minutes per day (in increments of 10 minutes if one must), substituting some of the ingredients they normally cook with, taking the stairs when given the option, etc. But what grieves me the most is that they ‘know’ these things! Yes, some are perishing and coming home to us much too soon, for lack of knowledge, but many are perishing because they refuse to ‘apply’ the knowledge they already have.

The Holy Spirit: I would help them and give them guidance, if they would just ask. And those that do ask often ignore my nudging and my pleading. I speak in the Supermarket. I speak when they go to restaurants. I speak when they’re at family occasions. I am always speaking! But, many of them choose to hear certain instructions, and ignore others.

The Son: But, Father, we all know that the kingdom of God is not meat and drink, but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. And, bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. These that you speak of have chosen the best part.

The Father: Yes, my Son, and we also know that to live a life full of me includes self-control, moderation, and a pure, undefiled temple set aside for my use. They are to be my witnesses in more than just their spiritual lives. Besides...I so yearn to give them not just my sufficient grace in this area of their lives, but also a life of abundance!

The Son: This year will be different Father. I know it will. Be patient. Please.

The Father: Yes, that I will do. With me, all things are possible.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Beyond Being Aware

“Doctor’s Office”
“Yes, I’d like to make an appt, please.”
“Sure. Your last name?”
“First Name?”
“Hmmm…..have you ever been here before?”
“Of course…. Well, I missed my annual appt this year in 2009 which is why I’m calling, but…..Hmm…I think I was there last year….
“Hmm….What was your name again?”
(annoyed) “What about looking under something else, like my date of birth?”
“No… wouldn’t be under that…”
“Well, I’ve been coming there for the past 20 years so I’ve got to be in your system.”
“Has it been more than two years since you’ve been here?”
“No…I would not miss my annual appt two years….one maybe…but not two….at least I don’t think I would...….has it been two years?”
“We switched to electronic medical records two years ago and some of our old charts didn’t switch over. I can’t find you anywhere in our system so it must have been at least two years since you’ve been in.”

I couldn’t believe it. Me! MISS ‘Can’t we just all be healthy’……MISS, ‘We need to take care of these bodies because they are the temple of God’……MISS, ‘Get out and take a walk why don’cha!’ It turns out that my last annual gynecology exam was in December 2007! And my last mammogram was January of 2008! It is now October 2009! Shame on me! Before then I never missed a year of having both! What good is it to eat right and exercise on a daily basis, if I don’t take care of me in every other way? What good would it be for us to become more aware of breast cancer this month and never exam our breasts on a regular basis? What good would it be for us this month to learn that some of the little known breast cancer warning signs are: 1) a change in your nipples, 2) redness, swelling or bruising, 3) sore armpits, and 4) discharge, (SHAPE magazine, Oct 2009) if we never pay attention to our bodies? What good would it be for us this month to learn that, 1) body fat boosts your risk of postmenopausal breast cancer, and, 2) women who walked briskly for 30 minutes a day 5 times a week reduced their risk of breast cancer by 20 percent, (Weight Watchers magazine, Sept/Oct 2009) if we act like we are afraid to sweat? What good would it be for us this month to learn that we should “Eat a plant-based diet, which has been shown to help reduce the risk of breast cancer; fill your plate mostly with vegetables, fruits and whole grains,” (FITNESS Magazine, Oct 2009) if we refuse to eat a variety of foods? As we become more aware of breast cancer this month, let’s find ourselves still doing something about it NEXT month and the month after….and the month after. Beyond being aware. What will that look like that to you?

Candy Craze!

I took two tootsie rolls out of my co-worker’s candy dish. It happened so quickly….I don’t even remember thinking about it and deciding to take them but there they were in my hand as I walked away. This must be how an ex-drug addict or former alcoholic must feel when she is tempted by the thing she has now been free of for quite some time; and no one is around. Oh, the memories. I used to eat 5-10 tootsie rolls as my afternoon sugary treat about twice a week; sometimes three times. The women at the Gift Shop in the hospital next to where I work always knew what I was coming to buy. If I missed a day they wondered if I was O.K.. No, this wasn’t many years ago. This was just last year! I would eat one slowly as I walked back to my office. Then I would hide the others on the side of my desk where no one else would see them so they wouldn’t ask me for any. What a rush! What a feeling! It seemed like so long ago….. and now here they were…two tootsie rolls in my hand…..Would I eat them now? Or, would I save them for a treat for later? Would I chew them slowly, savoring every taste? Or, would I chew them quickly? But wait? I thought I broke that habit? I thought my new motto was, “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” (I Corin 6:12) Could I eat just two and be satisfied or would I need more? Perhaps two would be enough this day, but would it be the beginning of the poor habit all over again and the next day I would find myself taking a trip to the Gift Shop? All of a sudden, before I knew it, just as quickly as I had picked them up and put them in my hand, I threw them in a trash can! A trash can with a top on it! I didn’t want to be trapped again; trapped by the sugar rush. I was enjoying my freedom. As you find yourself surrounded by lots of candy this time of the year, just remember, “Candy has a high glycemic index (GI), which means that it causes a high rise in blood sugar levels after ingestion. This is chiefly a concern for people with diabetes but, but could also be dangerous to the health of non-diabetics. (Wikipedia). Also, you may be surprised at the calorie content of some of your favorite candies- even the small packages: Hershey Kisses – 26 calories and 8 g carb each kiss; M&Ms plain, fun size, (18g), 88 calories and 12 g carb; M&Ms peanut, Fun size (18g), 93 calories and 11 g carb; Tootsie Rolls, 50 calories and 10g carb, or Midgee tootsie roll, 23 calories and 7 g carb; Reese’s Peanut Butter cup, miniature, (about 9 grams each) 44 calories and 5 g carb per cup; Snickers Bar, Fun size (17 g), 80 calories and 10 g carb; York Peppermint Patty, regular small patty, (14 g), 53 calories and 11g carb. ( Yep! It may feel like a candy craze these days, but will you be crazy enough to give into it or just a little crazy and stop when you know you have enough? “….To thine ownself be true”…..