Find me at
Resolutions inevitably seem burdensome to me, so this year I decided to take a few new projects I’ve been wanting to tackle and assign them to 2014. Putting a deadline on my hobbies, I guess you could say. It seems more exciting than burdensome!
1) Read two new books a month.
Although he does like to read, Zach prefers watching TV in his downtime, and since we’ve gotten married I’ve followed suit (reading a bunch for school doesn’t help motivate me either). However, I miss my books and want to be intentional about personal reading.
2) Try (and file if I like) the recipes/projects I have pinned/clipped instead of gathering new inspiration.
Of course the joke that none of use the ideas we get from Pinterest has become so true it’s now cliché…but I am in real need of some inspiration decluttering.
3) Run a ½ marathon in the fall.
This has been a goal of mine since I ran a seven mile race last summer. I’m not a great runner but I made friends with a girl who ran a ½ a few years ago and I’m hoping she’ll be my marathon buddy.
4) Learn how to make candy.
Since I work at a bakery, I am often too burnt out on baking to pursue my own floury projects at home. However, I know next to nothing about candy-making and find it fascinating. It’s just different enough from baking to keep me from mistaking it for work.
5) Post on my blog 2X per week.
I love blogging, but I don’t make it a priority and all too often school, work, marriage, and lounging around take precedence. Not this year!
What are your dreams/goals/ideas/thoughts about 2014?
So, a little more than a week in and I’ve lost around…1 lb. Somewhat discouraging. I’m going to stick with this exact plan for another week and if progress continues to drag its feet I’m planning on adding in running one mile a day and a day of intermittent fasting.
I’ve cooked and eaten some delicious and healthy food this week. A couple highlights:
Mac n cheese with bacon, collards, and leeks. I used Trader Joe’s brown rice pasta, which is the best GF pasta I’ve found and so affordable. This spur-of-the-moment flavor combo was super tasty.
Steel-cut oats with chopped pear and toasted (oops burnt) pecans. Ignore the yellowed early morning lighting…this was the breakfast of champions. Overall, the eating has been easier and more delicious than I first imagined. Yay!
Let’s talk about…
I’ve missed one day of yoga practice so far and was unable to make EITHER Zumba class due to my schedule. Uh-oh.
I was in Chicago for a weekend yoga instructor training (more on in a later post) and I ate some chocolate and Garrett’s caramel corn. Not in egregious amounts (two servings of corn and probably seven-ish pieces of chocolate over the weekend) and I did walk and do yoga a lot, but if my weight isn’t cooperating the cheats must end.
However, I was proud of how well I stuck to my guns this weekend eating-wise despite eating mostly at restaurants. A number of Chipotle salads + burrito bowls were consumed…
I had a weird and gross continental breakfast, but bought some apples, almonds, and plain Greek yogurt at Trader Joe’s for the next morning, which hit the spot.
We also ate a P.F. Chang’s, Corner Bakery, and FoodLife in The Watertower Place…very easy to eat healthy at all those places. Also very easy to eat TJ and Fannie May chocolate and buttery delicious caramel corn. Ehem. Onward and upward!
No more cupcakes for Margeaux.
Well, it’s officially true…being in a relationship and being married has caused me to gain weight. Ten pounds, all told. While that’s not a huge amount, I want to drop it because weight gain is cumulative after all and I might as well fix this problem while it’s still relatively easy.
This is my plan, and I’m posting it to make myself accountable and maybe connect with others in a similar place:
Goal: Lose 10 lbs. by Dec. 1st
I would like to have time to exercise more but that is not feasible with my schedule. I’m all about figuring out what I can be consistent with, even if it seems small.
Yes, I sometimes get hunger headaches when I do this. I crave chocolate and sandwiches and the cupcakes I serve every day at my bakery job. But it is doable. I’m not skimping on fat, carbs, protein, or calories, and I’m able to participate in social events with minimal difficulty.
I’ve been playing around with different aspects of this plan for a while now, including limiting wheat/sugar/snacks and following the exercise plan, but my weekends have been my downfall. Halloween parties, 5 Guys burgers, school stress and lack of sleep….not a good combo. However, I have seen my habits shifting in the right direction and by making a game plan for the month I will be better prepared.
-5-day road trip to Virginia for a wedding // Plan: Eat and sleep according to normal schedule and make healthy choices within given contexts (restaurants, wedding meals, etc.). Use down time in car to study and research healthy eating/exercise ideas.
-Thanksgiving // Plan: Eat what I want Thanksgiving Day but don’t give up exercise and limit indulgences to that one day only.
-Weekends in general // Plan: Eat and sleep according to normal schedule as much as possible. Choose a healthy recipe to cook so that diet doesn’t completely depend on restaurants/in-laws. Use weekend to catch up and rest, not binge and veg.
I’ve been running intermittently for a year and a half now and I’ve learned a few things along the way. While I may be incredibly slow (I average a ten minute mile) and quite sporadic (I usually take the entire winter off because Iowa/Wisconsin winters are hella cold), at least I’m relatable. Hopefully my tips will reach out to those people who don’t know what energy gel is and could never imagine running a marathon (I’m with you).
1. Decide what distance feels good for you and don’t compare yourself with others. I like to run 5K (about three miles) at the most. Sometimes I get so discouraged by friends who run 10+ miles that I give up on myself. I quit running. My theory is this: running = good; not running = bad. Even if it’s just one mile – even if it’s just the length of one song – get out there.
2. Talk to other runners to get help and encouragement. I started running because I had a boss who did. She introduced me to barefoot shoes, told me it was okay to run a mile that took longer than ten minutes, and helped me see how running can help you get out in nature and learn about your community. I probably wouldn’t have learned these things from a magazine or blog. Try to develop some runner relationships.
3. Choose a do-able race and do it! Six months after I started running I signed up for a 5K race with a friend. The next summer, I ran the Bix. It was super-fun to actually complete a race and participate with hundreds of other runners. I did sign up for one other race, but I got lost on my way there and ended up crying in an alley in my car as the race started. And they never refunded my entry fee. So try not to do that.
4. Buy yourself some decent clothes. When I first started running, I didn’t believe in myself enough to actually spend money on “running” clothes. So I ran in old tennis shoes, ratty men’s sweatpants, and wife-beaters. Nothing wrong with that. But my confidence and excitement about running improved immensely when I bought my first pair of barefoot running shoes, a few sassy running tees, and some cute shorts. I find some things at Goodwill and other stuff for cheap at places like TJ Maxx and Marshalls. It’s not necessary to drop hundreds of dollars at Lady Foot Locker or The Nike Store. Although that would be fun.
5. Download MapMyRun. If you have a smartphone (and you like to run with it), download the free app MapMyRun. I love this app. It tells you how far you’ve run and what your pace is, and it creates a GPS map of your route. If it weren’t for this app, I probably wouldn’t run. I like to continuously be able to check my progress.
Now go for a run! You might like it more than you expect.