12 week life makeover

I have been slacking off. In regards to my eating, working out and life in general. It’s all been cumulating over the past 2 weeks, and the final kicker was my ankle injury last week. Ever since then, I’ve been unable to stop eating and I am currently downward spiraling. As we speak. Adding to that, the non fitness parts of my life aren’t great, so I am on track to gaining all the weight back that I lost.

I can’t figure out what is wrong. I know when I’m at work, I’m miserable and don’t want to be there, but that hasn’t changed in the past 5 yrs. I have been doing more towards my fitness career, so perhaps that is putting a spotlight on the fact that my 9-5 job is energy draining… I have this knee issue that I feel all the time, that bothers me…. I signed up for Match, but don’t think I would actually date anyone because I don’t feel good about myself…. I just need a break from it all and I need to do better.

I signed up for a 12 week career bootcamp. I know that my job is just an external issue, so in theory fixing that might not fix the internal issues. My mom always says “Wherever you go, there you are.” If you hate yourself or are depressed, that will make you even more so. But I’m also  working on the internal stuff as well. The job is just such a major factor in my mood and life, I know that things will change once I get a new job so I decided to get some outside help in the job hunting department. It’s a 12 week program that provides resources, coaching, resume and linkedin help… so it seems pretty good.

I also signed up for my AFAA certification course to be a certified fitness instructor, so I can study for that in these 12 weeks. Plus I want to do an elimination diet,  so no alcohol, sugar (!!!), soy and gluten. The major thing I want to eliminate is the alcohol and the sugar because I am addicted to sugar and alcohol just wastes my time.  I want to focus on exercise, physical therapy, recovery and getting healthy. With each day, I see more concerning behavior, like buying Baskin Robbins 3 times in the past 2 weeks, and getting 3 scoops each time. If I had a therapist, I would ask how someone could fall so far from grace in 3 weeks… But I’m reading the signals and am changing things up NOW.

The bootcamp starts on Sunday, but I’m starting immediately.

Phase 1- Week 1-2

  • No alcohol (!)
  • No sugar (!!)
  • 8 glasses of water per day
  • At least 7 hrs of sleep per night
  • Daily meditation and affirmations.- I realize that my job isn’t great, but it pays my bills, so I’m grateful
  • Daily physical therapy exercises
  • Crossfit or fitness class 4x per week
  • Daily blog posts
  • Participating in the Career Bootcamp and the meditation programs that I signed up for

I want a life makeover, but no one is going to do it for me. I need to do it for myself. I can be better and reach my weight, fitness and professional goals. 2018 will be the year.

Namaste

Vegan Weight Loss and Smoothie Recipe

I’m back with a food prep blog. I went to the gym this morning and went hard. A little too hard and have some tightness in my back, either from a deadlift or clean/press. I work for a back doctor, so I know what is going on and tomorrow will be a rest day for sure. Which is great because I need to start goal setting for next year and figuring out what is next in life. Here is the gym pic…

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Too many weights…

Now I am not a perfect person, but one thing I have perfected, is my breakfast. It is easy to get overwhelmed by choices (and  sugar) so I try to have the same thing everyday. I really do and people think it’s weird, but SO many specialists recommend automating 1-2 meals per day for weight loss because it makes life a little easier. For breakfast, I make a simple smoothie.  Since I am in the process of losing weight, I try to intuitively keep my calories down, without actually counting calories.

For instance, my morning smoothie could easily become a calorie bomb. When I started plant-based eating, I would have 2-3 bananas, 4-6 dates and a cup of berries in my smoothie and believe me, it was DELICIOUS. As someone who loves sweets, dates and bananas are a godsend and as someone that loves caffeine, I was bouncing off the walls from the sugar rush. However, after I met with a nutritionist, I realized it was too much sugar and too many unnecessary calories. When you are trying to lose weight, every calorie counts, even as a vegan.

There is a great article in this month’s Women’s Health magazine titled, “Losing Their Veganity”. Many women become vegan to lose weight yet they end up gaining weight so return to eating meat. One nutritionist quoted in the article said that one of her clients was consuming a smoothie bowl for breakfast that was 700 calories after the calculations. Some of us, myself included, follow these folks that are eating 4-5 bananas in a smoothie, but we go to sedentary jobs while they run and bike all over the city. It doesn’t matter if you are eating meat or not, calories count and do not let anyone fool you. If you are gaining weight, you might want to count for a few days or see a nutritionist. And here is my breakfast smoothie!

Vee’s Breakfast Smoothie -~300 cals*

  • 1.5 cups lemon water (3-10 calories depending on where you look. I just juice a lemon and put it in a mason jar and keep adding filtered water so it maintains its lemony goodness. Discard the lemon at the end of the week.)
  • 1 large banana (120 cals, less if smaller)
  • 2 cups kale (66 cals)
  • ~1 cup mixed berries (70+ cals)

*The lemon water cuts the kale’s bitterness and makes it so I don’t need almond milk, peanut butter or any other calorie additive. I usually have an apple as a snack mid morning and am ready to go for lunch at 12pm. My lunch and dinners are usually substantial (rice bowls or pasta) so saving 200 cals in breakfast helps a lot because I sit most of the day. If your job is more active, you could add chia seeds, peanut butter, or even omit the lemon water and use a milk substitute.

I prepare the bags on the weekend. I take one out the night before and put it in the fridge that way it defrosts a little. (I find if I blend straight from freezing, the kale doesn’t blend all the way through). You can change up the berries or the fruit for variety (I added peaches and nectarines in the summer). You can even change up the greens. When I get bored of this, I have some oatmeal for a few days and return to this. Try it!

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Lemon Water
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Packing the bags
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Storing it in the freezer

Lunch Food Prep

I try to keep my food prep as simple as possible. I used to do intricate meals for lunch and dinner and automate my breakfast, but now I just focus on making dinner delicious. According to THE Dr Oz, we should automate as many meals as possible if we are trying to lose weight. That is the entire point of food prep, however so many people that I meet can’t imagine eating the same meal 2 days in a row. I was never like that thankfully, but the quality of my meals have improved from blueberry muffins and bagels daily to kale smoothies.

Lunch

My kitchen is small. Did I say small. It’s tiny, but I will take it since it’s my first solo space. To start my prep, I separate a large can of beans into 5 small containers. Then I divide a tomato, avocado, cucumber and red pepper, I add 1 Tsp of balsamic vinegar and 2 TBSP of Hummus. In the evening, or morning if I am too lazy the night before, I clean about 3 cups of lettuce and throw one of these bowls on top. That is it!

It is a super easy way to stay healthy during the week, you can change the ingredients to whatever you prefer or is local to you, and you can save a lot of money from not ordering takeout at lunch because salads can be really expensive . To make it special, you can throw a TBSP of dried cranberries or candied walnuts and be in salad heaven. I used to add half an avocado to my salads, but now that it’s $3 for one, I just divide it up. I might add some olives next week for some added healthy fat.

Happy Tuesday! I hope everyone is safe and is in good spirits. It’s hard to stay positive all the time with the state of the world and with challenges, but all we ever really have is this moment. Stay healthy!

Instagram Food Pics?

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I think this is a great idea for weight loss, lifestyle changes and diet improvements. I’m just not sure how my current followers would feel about seeing my food pics all the time. My sister started a second Instagram which has a lot of followers, but some of them are from her main Instagram. When you create a second Instagram account using the same app, your new account is suggested to the followers of your old account. But thinking about it now, I guess there really isn’t anything wrong with it. My weight loss and fitness instructor journey is kind of a side project. I have been a secretive person in regards to my goals and what I do in my spare time, and no I’m not a drug dealer. I’m finding that even as I discuss my veganism with coworkers, I am becoming more articulate and my soundbites are becoming clear and have actual facts. In addition, discussing my goals will give me more accountability because people might ask  how things are going.

Speaking of which… My gym membership is $69.99 per month. I am setting a goal of 4 times per week or else I am cancelling the membership. I have another membership that I had to sign up for (6 months for $75!) in order to do my instructor training, so if I’m unable to follow my schedule, I’m canceling the pricey by the end of October.

Exercise, Inspiration and Excuses

 

My exercise plan is currently all over the place. I try to be semi-consistent, but it is difficult with work and my varying energy levels. I am the type of person that if I wake up and second guess for ANY reason, I cancel. If I have a flashing thought of “What if I sleep in today and watch Criminal Minds and eat cereal instead?”, that is all takes for my plans to derail. I use that as an excuse and I’ve missed many exercise classes and gym sessions . What helps me a lot is listening to motivational videos on YouTube or podcasts such as The Quote of the Day Show.  The best YouTube videos are the compilations of various speakers and I will admit I listen to a Les Brown morning motivation mix pretty much every morning. I posted some of my favorite videos below. I also have some issues with anxiety and I have been treating myself following the rules of Nike… JUST DO IT. Mel Robbins’  5 Second Rule has helped me leave the house when I didn’t want to leave, such as my first day of my exercise instructor training class. I didn’t actually read the book, but I heard her discuss it on The QOTD podcast. It is pretty much a 5 second countdown to get you to do any flipping thing. It’s funny that I want to be an exercise instructor and have anxiety but I know that after my first class, or my first incorrect cue I will be OK. You just have to be OK with laughing at yourself.

Speaking of being a teacher, it requires more stamina than just taking a class because you have to talk while you exercise! Like Beyonce, JLO or Gaga, singing and dancing at the same time requires A LOT of stamina, so I need to up my cardio. My plan is to do 45 minutes of the cardio machine during lunch 4/5  week days with one 60+ minute cardio session on the weekend. I need to do 2 dance classes per week because that is the type of class that I want to do and I want to learn moves, cues and jargon. I plan to do one additional strength class, in addition to my instruction training which should have quite a bit of strength. I will need to increase my food intake if I start losing weight too quickly. 

What about you? Is it easy to talk yourself out a gym session as well or are you the type of person that once it’s on the schedule, it’s getting done?

LINKS

Les Brown’s 15 Minute Morning Motivational Speech

When You Are About To Give Up

What Are You Becoming

RETRAIN YOUR MIND

The Quote of the Day Show

The Princess Bride Motivation?

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This magazine clip is from the October Women’s Health Magazine and they mentioned that it’s the 30 year anniversary of the Princess Bride! OMG!! I’m definitely going to find it in a theater near me. A young Cary Elwes anyone?? The editor’s letter was about how things are only inconceivable because you have never done it before. You just have to take the first step without overthinking it, and without letting the inconceivability of the idea stop you. Just begin. Go for the walk if you want to lose weight or throw out the unhealthy food. If you want to write a book or start researching a topic. Write the blog or sign up for the class. On a smaller scale… call that friend that’s been on your mind or make that doctor’s appointment that you’ve been putting off. Just do it!

Just some motivation before the weekend begins.

Diving in

Hello and welcome to my blog!!! My name is Vic and I am an aspiring health coach and wellness blogger. I am “Transitioning to Wellness” and a wellness career and I plan to chronicle the journey with this blog!!

Why do this? After years of thinking, planning, starting and stopping, I decided to jump in. I am a 33 year old medical office manager with no background in wellness other than an extreme desire to reach my goal weight and have a career in fitness and health promotion. There may be others out there that also are in the process of losing weight, have lost weight or want to lose weight and see themselves going into the health and wellness industry. Perhaps reading this blog will inspire them to do so. I will post all of the successes and trials. Once my health career becomes established I plan to transfer to a coaching blog. I want to help as many people as possible lose weight! That is my mission in life and it has already started.

I’ve lost 20 pounds this year, so far, by switching to a plant based diet and by going to the gym. My coworkers have definitely noticed and I’m starting to share my health and wellness tips. We are actually going to start a vegan Monday initiative in the office in order to move people away from meat. Once people start seeing success, they want to know what you are doing and they will follow. So one of the greatest tools to help me become a successful health coach in the future will be my before and after pics.

Who am I? As I previously mentioned, I work in an office and it’s a sedentary job. I have been overweight/obese for most of my life. Those are just the facts and I have never hid from it, although sometimes it’s hard to actually see the weight gain until I catch my reflection in a glass or see a picture and I’m unrecognizable. I have been flirting with veganism for awhile and in January 2017, I decided to go cold turkey.  I started the Starch Solution which is a high carb, low fat eating plan. That was going well but I still saw a nutritionist and she has been lowering my sugar intake. (You should have seen her face when I told her about my breakfast smoothie which included 2 bananas and 3 dates)! If you ever have the opportunity to see a nutritionist, you should definitely do so. Since I have been basically dieting since I started reading Self magazine at 12 years old, I am an encyclopedia of dieting info, which often conflicts. At my first visit, she looked at me and said nicely “it seems like you are simultaneously following multiple plans”. Shady, but she got me in check. 

What do I plan to do career wise? That is still in the development phase. I work full time so I am devoting my spare time to this. I am in school part-time getting a public health certificate and the program ends in December. My city’s parks department runs a fitness instructor training and my application was accepted so by spring I will be a certified instructor once I successfully complete the program and six month internship. From there we shall see what organically forms. I know I will be busy in the upcoming months doing research on health coaching, school, this blog and continuing to lose weight but this is what I want to do and it’s what I’m truly passionate about. I know that I want to motivate people to lose weight and reach optimum health by switching to veganism. And I plan to be Exhibit A.

So that is it for now! Follow this blog if you want to see my weight loss , my vegan meals and my career progress.

PEACE!

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