Bye Bye Cincinnati and My thoughts on "diet advice"

I'm back in Norfolk! I'm happy and sad about it at the same time... Cincinnati was an amazing chapter in my life and I made some really great friends there and did a lot of really fun things.  And that's saying something, considering the weather sucked 80% of the time I was there!  Last Thursday, I loaded up the car, strapped on the bikes, and drove all the way to DC where I spent the night with the family.

Luckily, they all made it!  Then Friday morning, I headed down to Norfolk, and my mom arrived later that day and we packed everything into boxes.  Want to figure out how much of your crap you actually use?  Put it all in boxes and see what you can get by without!

Well, the movers were supposed to come today... then this morning it got delayed until tomorrow... now its delayed again until Wednesday!  I really want to get to Florida and get this whole move thing over with... plus, I really don't have anything to do here in Norfolk besides workout and try to do my job from home.

I guess I have gotten a couple workouts while I've been here though.  Saturday was a 61 mile bike ride with a couple good triathletes here and I averaged about 19.5 mph, considering coming home was almost entirely in a headwind.  This was followed with a 7.5 mile run and some elliptical.  Today, I was able to get to get a good session in and take out my anger at the moving company on the gym lol.  I did a 9.1 mile run, 45+ minute spin class, 20 minutes of elliptical, and then some good core and yoga work.  The gym also got some new equipment so I was able to "play" on the TRX, Gymnastics rings, and heavy ropes for a while!

Before I left Cincinnati though, I was able to make one last Reds game: I was treated to front row tickets on the Red's dugout!  Check out the view:

One good thing about being back in Norfolk though is that I've gotten to hang out with Hollie.  She came over and we made some mean salmon last night- true, just as her!  I'll write more about this later this week.

And I have a confession, since my mom caught me doing this and laughed at me for it... but I mix a bunch of different Cheerio style cereals as well as Kashi into one big container... but when I pour a bowl, I always organize 5 of each flavor first, and eat them in order... OCD, I know!

Also, last night I made a bangin omelet! It was a cheese burger omelet!  Katelyn didn't think this sounded very healthy lol, but I explained the ingredient list to her and this I changed her mind!  The omelet was made with Organic Cage-Free eggs, Locally farmed extra-lean grass-fed ground beef, organic cheese, and tons of vegetables.

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But on another note, I read articles all the time preaching diet "rules and tricks" to help you lose weight, etc. and I have some of my own opinions on them:

  1. To not eat in front of the tv/computer: The thought here is that eating in front of the TV or computer will cause you to mindlessly eat more than if you sit down and savor your meal.  I eat dinner basically at the computer or in front of the TV while I read a magazine every night (I live alone- I'm not going to stare at a wall while I eat).  My response is to load your plate with however much it is you want to eat, sit down, at what you have planned to eat.  Stop if you feel full before you are done, and if you finish and you are still hungry, then have some more.  Just listen to your body.  Eating while at the computer or reading a magazine also helps me to eat much much slower and savor the food I have and also give me time to realize when I am full.
  2. To not finish everything on your plate:  For me, this goes back to what I said above.  Each night, I figure out exactly how much I plan to eat and only cook that much, or plan out a couple night in advance and know how much I want to eat per each night.  Then I put the next nights meals away, and eat what I have planned.  That way there's no mindlessly piling food on your plate, or going back for second or thirds.  Granted, if you want more, go have it!  But I'm just saying in response to this diet "tip."  Also, who wants to go through a meal, the whole time thinking "I'm not supposed to eat it all, I'm not supposed to eat it all."
  3. To not eat while at the computer: "Studies have shown", like in #1, that you'll eat more if you're eating distracted.  Therefore, like I said in the above 2, if you have your meal planned, there's no worry about eating more.  I know that when I go to work and eat lunch at my desk, I only have enough food for what is lunch... so how would I eat more anyway?
  4. Cutting calories (or not eating enough in the first place) and expecting to get faster: I'm going to call out a lot of people on this one.  If you want to be a faster runner, cyclist, "elliptical-er", or better "Body Pump-er" then you've got to eat to fuel that.  A meager bowl of oatmeal before a workout and then carrot sticks and hummus afterward aren't going to get you faster.  For athletic improvement, about 20% comes from hard work and the other 80% comes from nutrition and recovery.  If you are not giving your body the energy it needs to put in the hard work, then you really can't expect to see incredible results.  After a hard workout you need to eat high quality foods immediately afterward to replenish and rebuild.  If you workout is light, this is less important, but remember for the rest of the day that you still need to recover and you also need to eat well to prepare yourself for the next day.
  5. Reducing calories and increasing exercise:  I think Fitness Magazine or Shape has an article every month for "your first marathon" or "first mini-triathlon" where the plans usually call for increasing your training volume and at the same time cutting back on your calories to a paltry "1,500" which for some reason seems to be a magic number.  But like I said above, when your training increases, your calories do not need to decrease.  There's no way you can cut calories AND begin doing the amount of work a marathon would take.  There are tons of pro athletes and people who have successfully lost weight by simply increasing their training and not doing a thing with their diets (and some of the diets were even pretty awful).
  6. Increasing the amount of time you workout: If you workout slow and add in more slow working out, your results on race day are still going to be... slow.  If you want to be fast(er), you've got to train faster.  30 minutes worth of intervals is going to not only get you in WAY better shape that a slow run for 60 minutes, but it's also going to torch double the calories and also have a greater thermic effect on your metabolism for the rest of the day, meaning you'll burn more calories at rest.  You need to get "comfortable with be uncomfortable" so when race day comes, you can go all out and be alright with how that feels.
  7. "Lifting" weights:  The same here go as above in its concept.  If you want to get stronger, you need to lift hard and the weight needs to be heavy.  There's never a reason to lift a 4-pound dumbbell for 25 reps.  Grab a heavier one and do 6-10 reps where you are just able to finish the last rep.  This goes for endurance athletes as well.  You probably don't realize it, but strength training places an enormous role in ability to be faster and work harder.
  8. If you want to run fast, you need to run.  Use the elliptical to cross-train and build you aerobic base (I use it all the time for intervals and to let my running legs recover), but hit the pavement to see faster times come race day
  9. Eat This, Not That:  This is a great book from Men's Health and Women's Health.  While it makes sense at most of the restaurants it suggests ordering a different option at, you can achieve the same thing by just tailoring your order.  When ordering a steak, just requested that it not be grilled in oil, or get the pancakes, but requested the whip cream and fruit on the side and order it with fresh fruit and some scrambled eggs (for protein) instead of sausage.  When getting a pizza just get what you want, but ask for light cheese and order it with extra tomato sauce.  As long as you are nice, lol, restaurants will gladly tailor your order to you... a lot of times with stuff that isn't even on the menu.
  10. Low fat recipes:  Don't fear fat!  Ok, I know, this is one of the toughest things for me and I find myself constantly looking for low-fat recipes, but we've got to stop that.  Low-fat diets are not satiating and take about 100% longer for those on them to lose weight, plus many of the items that are "low fat" are full or processed fillers, sugars, and additives.  Even in products your wouldn't think!  Embrace goods fats- grass fed RED meat, real butter (no margarine!), avocados, nuts, coconut oil, wild caught fish, and anything else found in its natural form.

Ok, I'm done.  What do you think about this- agree or disagree?  I'd love to hear what you think!

  • What diet tips do you hear that you disagree with?
  • Which are some that you actually agree with?
Have an amazing week everyone and hopefully my next post will be from Florida!