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Posts tagged ‘fitness challenge’

Day 1: I’m back at it

The little kid and I were on our own this weekend. It’s been raining non-stop for days, so we didn’t do much of anything yesterday – it was a much-needed lazy day after a very busy work week.

That being said, as great as cuddling up on the couch to watch movies on a rainy day can be, doing it for a full weekend can be a bit much. Especially when your cuddle partner is a very energetic toddler. He barely made it through yesterday. Little kid needed to get out of the house today.

I am not a fan of going out in the rain. Gloomy, rainy days put me in a mood, so trying to find a place to go to that little kid would enjoy (and I wouldn’t hate), was a challenge. I really didn’t want to drive into Tokyo, but when push came to shove, I bit the bullet and off we went.

Our first stop: Where is a Dog, a gluten-free restaurant in Shinjuku. I’d read they have gluten-free bagels that are actually good, so it was at the top of my list of places to try. I didn’t have a bagel for lunch, but I did enjoy this delicious green curry with rice.

The little kid had the pizza toast, but mostly he just ate both of our desserts.

We had a great lunch. The food was delicious, and the staff was awesome. They were so nice! The menu is in both Japanese and English, and dairy-free and vegan dishes are clearly labeled, so that was super convenient. They also have a pretty big selection (compared to other places in Japan) of gluten-free adult beverages and gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan desserts. I’m definitely going back to try their gluten-free and dairy-free waffles.

As far as the bagels I’d read so much about, I bought a couple of frozen ones to take home and reheat for breakfast tomorrow. I’m pretty excited about it.

After lunch, we stopped at the Korean grocery store to pick up some bones for broth, then made our way to the aquarium to see fish. There are quite a few aquariums to choose from in Tokyo, but we decided to check out the Maxell Aqua Park.

If you’ve lived in Japan or spent enough time in Tokyo, you may already know that heading to a nice aquarium in a large shopping mall (that houses other entertainment options like an IMAX theater and bowling alley) on a rainy holiday weekend, is a terrible decision. It was so unbelievably crowded. But, it really is a cool place and little kid had a great time. We will definitely be going back in the future with the rest of the family (on a non-holiday weekday).

I’d hoped to get most of the day’s steps knocked out at the aquarium, but that didn’t happen. It felt like I walked a lot, but it seems my Garmin disagrees. So yeah, just in case you were wondering, I had to resort to pacing around my house to get all of my steps in. And me being me, I waited until the last possible hour to do it. It’s like subconsciously I’m purposely setting myself up for an adrenaline-fueled race against the clock to get my steps in. Then I wonder why I can fall asleep afterwards.

Oh, I almost forgot: I decided on those other goals. Most of them are already on my goal tracking spreadsheet that I printed after my last Bod Pod in June, so I’m thinking it would be ok to try and hit all of them. But, I’m only going to prioritize one at a time. This week, it’ll be all about getting these steps in every day – preferably before dinner.

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Day 52: I ate a mountain of french fries

I’ve been feeling pretty proud of myself the last few days. I am on a 5-day step goal streak, I’ve been hitting the gym, and I’ve managed to get more mindfulness and water into my daily life. I’ve also been doing pretty ok with the whole avoiding gluten and dairy thing – it hasn’t felt as hard as I expected it to be.

Until today.

Today sucked. Or rather, this evening sucked.

The day started out all right. I had some bone broth soup for breakfast. I went to the gym. I did some work and a little meal prepping. I even volunteered at my daughter’s school for a couple of hours. It was turning out to be a nice, productive day. Then we went out for dinner after visiting the poop museum (yup, you read that right, a museum dedicated to poop). My daughter wanted a burger and I figured I’d be able to find something I could eat there too, so we went to the burger spot.

Well, it turns out I was wrong – oh so very wrong. This place only serves cheeseburgers, and asking for a burger without the cheese and/or bun just isn’t a thing. That’s just not how it works here. So, while everyone else enjoyed what they excitedly described as “the best burgers they’ve tasted since moving to Japan,” I ate a mountain of fries.

I have never wanted a burger so badly in my life.

It was awful. That meal was a slap-in-the-face reminder that having to avoid gluten and dairy sucks big ones. It legit hurt my feelings.

I know I should focus on the fact that I managed to resist the temptation. I should be proud of myself for staying strong and all that bullshit; but truthfully, I just feel shitty about it.

I keep telling myself that it’s just food and that cravings are just mind games your brain plays with you, but it still feels crappy. It still makes me sad. I mean, I love food. Food is life!

But, all that being said, I’m going to bed tonight without stomach pains and I’m not running to the bathroom every few minutes. I feel good physically, even if I don’t feel so swell emotionally – and that’s a good thing. I can’t expect it to always be easy. I know it’s going to be hard more often than not, but in the end, despite the suck, it will be worth it – even if I can’t take comfort in that fact right now.

Day 45: Walking the walk

In my previous post, I committed to avoiding gluten and dairy in hopes of improving my health, but to be honest, I’ve been putting it off since then. It’s not that I’m unwilling to do it, I know I should, I just don’t think I’ve felt ready to pull the trigger just yet.

That being said, I did take some steps in that direction. On Friday, after my metabolic assessment appointment, I spoke to the wellness counselor about scheduling a few weekly coaching sessions. I’ve heard a lot about wellness coaching and how helpful it can be, but I’ve never given it a try myself. Considering the changes I’m trying to make and my history of struggling when it comes to changing my diet, I figured now would as good a time as any to give it a try.

Afterwards, I swung by the library and came across the cookbook section. I looked through what they had and decided to borrow two: “Nom Nom Paleo” (the yellow one) and “The Science of Cooking.” I skimmed through them as soon as I got home and did a little meal planning. I made dinner tonight using one of the recipes from Nom Nom Paleo, and it was really good – even my family liked it.

On Sunday, I decided to make some bone broth – specifically seolleongtang, a Korean bone broth soup my husband really likes. I’ve read that bone broth is good for gut health, so I figured I might as well jump on the bandwagon and see if theres any truth to it.

Finally, on Tuesday, I took some new progress photos and body measurements. Although I’m making these changes for overall health instead of weight or fat loss, I still want to be able to keep track of any physical changes that might occur. I also had my first coaching appointment. It went well. I felt motivated after meeting with her and decided to pull the trigger on the whole avoiding dairy and gluten thing.

I’d like to say I’ve been killing it since then, but it’s been hard. I’m not craving breads or cheeses, but I’ve struggled with “hidden” gluten and dairy. Gluten seems to be in everything, including the gochujang and soy sauce I use all the time. It’s so frustrating.

I’m ok though. I’m not discouraged just yet. It’s challenging, but in a good way, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how creative I can get with this in the kitchen. Hopefully, I can share some fun finds on this blog in future posts. Wish me luck! I’m going to need it.

Day 33: Tracking things

When I committed to giving this challenge another try, I told myself that I would stick to one goal or habit at a time. Once I was able to successfully keep that goal/habit for at least seven days straight, then (and only then) I could consider adding another one.

But me being me, I went ahead and modified my goal tracking spreadsheet after my most recent Bod Pod, and put a whole bunch of stuff on it. I didn’t set any new goals or anything, and I didn’t commit to religiously tracking everything, but I did tell myself that I would at the very least try to track these things. And I have for the most part.

I don’t know what it is about spreadsheets, but I love them. I find them motivating. I like having data to analyze, and being able to see how the different things I do affect how I feel and look, and what I am able to do. It makes this whole process seem a lot less like work and a lot more like some fun science experiment (which would explain my earlier Experiments 1 and 2). It may sound silly, but approaching this challenge and my goals in that way has made it so much easier to stick with it.

My spreadsheet also serves as a great visual reminder for me to stay on track towards making the positive changes I’ve committed to. I hung it up on the pantry door in my kitchen. There’s nothing else hanging there, so it doesn’t get lost among other papers (like the stuff I hang on the fridge does), and I see it everyday. Granted, I guess it could make me feel bad by putting my “failures” on display for all to see, but so far, I’ve found it to be motivating – for the most part (it doesn’t seem to help much with my steps).

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