Saturday, February 27, 2010

Weekend Reads 2/27/2010

Another week is over! Start your Sunday with some reads.

A professor's fabulous response to a student who walked into class 1 hour late. Unwritten classroom rules..

If you are interested in buying a DSLR camera anytime in the near (or not so near future). Here is an article that explains why you should pay attention to the camera's ISO and what ISO means in a digicam.

Learn how canceling credit cards can effect your credit score.

This is an excellent article on expressing your opinions and speaking with conviction in general. I think this is an especially important issue for women, because we tend to do to that questions at the end of our answer thing..

Recipe of the week.

Black Bean Vegetable Soup (from Allrecipes)
This is a spicy, flavorful and very versatile bean soup. I like to add one tortilla chip on top sometimes. 
I personally do not puree the beans as directed in the recipe. I keep everything whole my changes are

I only use one can of black beans and a can of kidney/pinto beans.
I add 1 tsp adobo, flour/starch to thicken, a dash of smoked salt

Weekly Weigh In 02.26.10

I weighed in on Friday at -8.8 so I'm up  +.2 from last week
I'm really hoping that this is mostly PMS/ auntflo weight. Never less, there are some things that I can be doing better.

On Friday I realized that the day before I drank VERY little water. Barely one cup, so I should drink more water just because. Also, while I'm eyeballing my intake I'm not strictly counting.. so I need to at least accurately track for the first half of the day so I have an idea of how much more I should (or should not eat) for the rest of the day.

Things I'm doing right:

I exercised Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday (today). On the days that I really didn't feel like my full 2 mile (30 min walk). I did the 1 mile walk (20 mins) but I added good ole buttkicks from Jillian Micheals 30 day shred when Leslie wanted us to walk up and back, and I added cardio boosting hops to the kicks. I'm getting myself prepared to get back into it. I really wanted to get my heart rate up there and challenge myself and at the end of my 1 mile workouts I fell into my bed because I was so spent! Today I added hand weights during the warm-up walk to get to strength moves in, too.

I'm really feeling the benefits of regular exercise again, I'm feeling less pain from female cramps, I feel better daily. I tried Pilates on friday--yum no.. I stopped after 15 minutes because the VOD I was doing did alternating cardio and pilates moves.. I liked the cardio but the pilates was too difficult for me, for now. :)

I need to stop worrying about the numbers on the scale, because I can feel myself getting stronger and I'm sure some of this gain is muscle. Now its just balancing my diet and exercise..

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Quickie Post--today's workout

I didn't get to exercise yesterday because my knee started acting up.  But this morning,  I did do my 2 Mile WATP walk and a 15 minute Priscilla Patrick Yoga session and I feel amazing.

I took my Multivitamin,  had a cup of green tea, took fish oil supplements and a vitamin C supplement plus my breakfast (3 small tilapia fillets topped with chopped tomato/avocado/cilantro)

I take vitamin c after a workout because it's supposed to help decrease the inflammation that naturally occurs during exercise and  help with muscle repair. I should probably check on that info,  because I haven't checked for any new developments on that in about 5 years.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Weekend Fail..

I feel awful because Friday, Saturday and Sunday I didn't workout at all, or eat very well either. Sunday was really bad I had: cornbread (150) , ice cream (150), cookies (450) then topped it with cheese and crackers (400) and a small piece of carrot cake (150) . I had all this plus 2 cups of my soup (400)  for the whole day (1700 calories is my guestimate). It wasn't very bad calorie-wise but it was very bad because I consumed too much sugar and fats for the day and my I hardly had any protein for the day.  The only saving grace I had is that I finally made my black bean veggie soup so I have a healthy, prepared meal that I can pack to work for at least a week.

I've been doing much better today
1/2 tomato and pesto sandwich on Whole Wheat bread
1 cup of my black bean veggie soup
2oz of baked tilapia

1 cup of hazelnut coffee with 1/4 c skim milk + 1 packet sugar in the raw + 2 splenda packets
1 sour cream cookie

I have 2 cups of my soup + 2oz of tilapia shredded into it. that I will eat when I get hungry while studying..

I WILL be working out later this evening..

Friday, February 19, 2010

Dr.Pedro Greer--an inspiration for physicans

I went to a conference in which Dr. Greer spoke at my university. He is an amazing person with amazing stories to tell. As an intern Dr. Greer was exposed to the homeless in Miami and since then he has setup free hospitals and free clinics for the homeless, migrant workers and undeserved in Miami and surrounding areas. He setup his first one as an intern 27 years ago. The conference was mainly for current and future physicians.  He implored the next generation of physicians to aspire to make the lives of everyone in society better in regards to accessibility and treatment for healthcare. Words cannot describe how inspirational he was, I was in tears at the end of his speech merely from the love, compassion, heart and soul his puts into his life and his practice of medicine for everyone!

He has a book published, I need to google him and find it because he didn't plug it, but he read alittle bit from it.

ETA: Found it!
His book is called Waking Up In America: How One Doctor Brings Hope To Those Who Need It Most and its available on I'm going to check and see if my local library has a copy.

Afterwards, I saw a friend that's a first year (MS1) at the local medical school that I haven't see in awhile, we had a great catch up talk and she is another person that just made me feel more confident about applying this time around.  Its great when people express support, advice and compliments when unprompted, it just makes it that much more special.

Look at that three posts in a day, who knows when THAT is gonna happen again.

Weekend Reads 2/19/2010

This article finds that good luck is a learnable habit/skill. 

I'm sure you've heard by now about Kevin Smith and the Southwest scandal, here is a fabulous commentary about it from a big girl perspective. I was appalled to learn that he was kicked off the plane despite being able to put on his seatbelt and able to put the armrest down.

Keeping your computer safe because of malicious PDF files that exploit Adobe Reader.  I've always known to avoid hacked software, suspicious websites, and peer-to-peer software like limewire/frostwire like the plague, now bad PDF files? Read it and weep..

I suggest using an alternate PDF reader like the free, feature rich Foxit Reader (my favorite, just manually uninstall the foxit toolbar). I swiched a long time ago because Adobe reader always annoyed me with how bloated it was, it didn't matter if I was on a super speedy computer or a slow one, Adobe always took too long to load and print, period.

Recipe of the Week.
Food Addicts Toscana soup (their version)

Kemi's remixed Toscana Soup
-Even with my lightening mojo, it is still a hearty soup with ~170 calories per cup. You can cut down even more by lowering the number of sausages from 5 links to 2 and decreaseing the potatoes to one and cut the sausages and potato up finer to still get the same taste, but less calories.

  • 1 lb. spicy turkey Italian sausage
  • 2 medium potatoes (skin on), sliced ¼’
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. soy bacon bits (or real bacon bits or chopped turkey bacon) 
  • **using a dash of smoked salt can also give a smokey flavor without the bacon
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 c., fresh spinach (or kale)
  • 8 ¾ c. chicken stock (I used 9 cups of water with powdered broth to taste after simmering)
  • 1 c.  skim milk (they used fat free, half and half)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Dash of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes (i like my soups spicy!)
  • I added ~1 tablespoon of roux for more complex flavor and a thicker, richer broth without using the half/half


1. Cook Italian sausage in a large pot and drain the fat (if there is any) ( I like boiling the sausages and getting rid of the water/salt/fat all together)
2. Add onions and garlic in same pot and cook until aromatics are released from the garlic about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
3. Add chicken stock and potatoes and cook over medium heat until potatoes are soft.
4. Add soy bacon bits, kale* (if using spinach add at very end) and half-and-half (or skim milk) and cook another 10 minutes over a low simmer.
5. If you are using spinach add it at the end, or if using kale--when kale is soft, remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve.

Serving size: 1 cup
Calories: 171.8
Total Fat: 5.6
Sat. Fat: 1.7 
Carbs: 20g 
Protein: 11.5g

Weekly Weigh In 02.19.10

I checked today and I'm down 9lbs even. The inevitable 2lb gain is back, I checked my weight Wednesday and I was 11.5 lbs down. I'm not going to be discouraged.. maybe I should change WI day to Wednesdays because Fridays are just seeming to be bad. 

On a lighter note, I exercised Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and I plan on exercising later this evening my stamina is increasing, I think I'll add weights in another week. 

Dietwise, I haven't been tracking but I've been careful about what I'm eating, eyeballing the calorie info and taking a multivitamin. 

Monday, February 15, 2010

Getting back into fitness

I am soo out of shape, and I can tell because I did the Walk away the pounds 2mile workout this morning and I felt my muscles going, noooo! Before I use to do this DVD on my "easy" days and did the 30 day shred on my "moderate/hard" days. I dare not try the 30 day shred until I get stronger..

I decided to add exercise to the mix because I think that those 7lbs that fell off so easy, were they most recent fat gain and for some reason they fall off easier (with just a diet change). I hopped on the scale today and I'm at 9.4 lbs down from my starting weight! I need to remember to not be discouraged when the numbers fluctuate (due to water weight)  because I can get into the mood of, I might as well eat what I want because this isn't working!

I'm now closer to the weight that I've been around for the past 2 years.  I think its time to ease into exercise to help melt the fat away along with staying on top of my eating habits. Also, its been since October when I stopped exercising regularly so alot of my muscle mass is gone. I can feel it and that's what I enjoy the most about exercise even when I didn't lose a pound of weight, I feel strong and its liberating to be able to push your body to do things you thought you were not strong enough for.

ETA: I think I'm plateu-ing right now because my body got used to me eating less food. So hopefully adding exercise to the mix and weight training helps to boost my metabolism. I forgot to mention this earlier.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Weekend Reads 2/13/2010

I borrowed this post series idea from The Glamourous Grad Student's Weekend Reads  I look forward to them each week because they come from blogs that I don't usually read and often give useful insights/ advice and all that jazz.

Here are my reads for the week:
(I forgot this post the first time!)

From one of my favorite blogs, The big girl blog-Men Every Big Girl Will Meet: The Foreign Guy she has the most amazing insights on being a big girl and being a girl in general..

From one frugal foodie to another advice to deal with the rut you can fall into when cooking meals at home and avoiding cooking burnout

With the craze that is surrounding vintage here is some great advice for Growing your own vintage from your own closet for the future.

Excellent advice on organization for the kitchn and for photographs by Real Simple readers  on organizing your kitchn spices and grains  and a very useful method to keep your digital photos organized.

Recipe of the week- a recipe that I've tried,  loved and want to share
Lemon Chickpea Pasta

Shopping Blues

I'm sitting here wanting to go out and shop but I'm going to stay put. I need to get out of the habit of retail (or thrift) therapy. I've noticed that when I have alot of things that need to be done. I distract myself with shopping--thrifting is the best because I can be busy for hours. Instead of shopping for items that I need and doing things that keep me on the straight and narrow. Such as buying groceries, cooking and saving leftovers for the rest of the week so I don't have to buy outside food. It less expensive, healthier and it tastes better, too. I just need to stop the impulse shopping and buying when I don't need.  There are some things that make me curse at my shopping ban like these zippered Jeggings from Lane Bryant , I almost died! LB isn't usually on top of it like that, very rarely do I get very excited about things over there. I may make an exception for these jeggings, I have a LB gift card that's burning a hole in my pocket and I can wear the jeggings winter, summer, fall, spring. I'll think about it, they are sold out online (except size 14/16) Hopefully they will still have some in the local stores if i do decide to get them at a later date.

Moving away from my shopaholic tendencies, making a lighter version of THIS chicken soup is on the agenda for the weekend.Other things to do are taxes, fasfa, putting in alot of MCAT study hours in. (I'm wayyy behind) and  my hair(washing, conditioning and redoing).

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Weigh In 2/11/2010--a quickie post

So... I hopped on the scale yesterday and I was ~2.6 lbs down from last week. I was pleased and figured if I eat good (no junk) I should be about the same for Friday. That's a perfectly reasonable thought, right? Well, i hopped on the scale this morning and i magically gained 2 lbs, so I'm only down .6lb for this week.

It is probaly because i had panera AND chitpotle yesterday and I've been slacking on the food tracking. Mind you my panera/chitpole choices were better choices so I'm sure I stayed under 1600 (those are the only two "meals" I had yesterday plus coffee) but still I think the salt content alone in those foods may have cause me to retain some water. I'm gonna count the .6 lbs for my weekly loss and I will be tracking my calories more closely for next week. Other then that I have no idea what else would cause a gain of 2lbs in less than 24hrs..

I'll post later about my thoughts about the dramatic 7lb in one week loss. How I lost it, why I think I lost it so fast and why I'm at a plateau now..

Sunday, February 7, 2010

First Post-- the ground rules

I've been wanting to start a blog for a while but I really didn't have too much to write about. Ever since I've started this new year with my three goals in mind plus grad school and preparing to apply to medical school some of my ambition has faltered. I figure if I write about it I will stay on the straight and narrow.

Goal #1: Losing 10 lbs a month.
Good thing: I lost 7lbs the first week in Jan, bad thing that's ALL i lost in January. I kept gaining and loosing all month. Its a good start, i guess.
Weigh in days are fridays. So I will try and post my losin then.
What really helps me is Sparkpeople's nutrition tracker, I was shocked to see how many calories some of my favorite foods were packing.

Goal #2 I rediscovered TJMaxx and discovered fat fashion blogs and both of those things are not good ideas.. I kept buying, buying and buying. I decided that I would not buy any clothes (with few exceptions--like shopping interview clothes or if i see basics that I don't have and need) I also began heavy-duty thrifting and I was buying some things that i really don't need. I'm allowed to thrift (the adventure is in searching for me) as long as they are items that are needed. In fact I spent $11 on pins last week. I acquired a  ladybug pin and I dubbed her Penelope, if you see her say hello! Also I was so disgusted when one week (albeit it was during finals week-so i was really short on time) I spent $45 in 3 days on dining out. I had fallen out of the habit of making my food at home and my waistline was larger and wallet lighter because of it.

Goal #3: I forgot about my hair goal! 3) Take better care of my hair and see how long and healthy it gets!

I haven't set up here on blogger yet..But I am on tumblr here
I lied.. I think I'll post more pictures on my Tumblr page..