Monday, November 8, 2010

"Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each." - Henry David Thoreau

Hey everyone!

It’s been a few days since I’ve last blogged – things have been so hectic with me the past week, I haven’t had a chance to breathe.  Here’s the gist of it.

Wednesday, 11/03 – My company’s dress rehearsal for the Autumn Performance Series.  I worked all day, then watched the rehearsal at 7:30.  Left the office at 9:00pm, caught the 9:46 train and made it home around 10:30.  No exercise that day.

Thursday, 11/04 – Opening of the Autumn Performance.  Didn’t get into work until about 12:30, but when I attempted to wake up at 8:00 that morning to do my workout, I was exhausted.  So I slammed the snooze button on my alarm like 2 or 3 times.  Stressful work environment always yields stress eating (for me, anyway), and I think I ate pizza for lunch.  BBQ chicken pizza from City View is really slammin’.  It tastes even better when you dip it in ranch dressing.  I’m sure my arteries thanked me for that one.  By the way, that little habit of dipping pizza in ranch dressing stems from my days at Bloomsburg.  I always used to eat the buffalo chicken pizza from the pizza kitchen on campus, and I ate it with ranch.  Guess old habits die hard.

Friday, 11/05 – Closing performance at work, plus an after party.  I worked about 12 hours that day.  Party ended about 11:30, but I worked in the office until 2:00 that morning, finishing up the programs for the touring engagement they had this past Sunday. Lucky for me, my coworker Judy was drinking wine and chatting with me while I completed my work. (That’s something else I’ll miss about this job when I leave – being able to “drink” on the job. It’s really only a glass or two of wine, but hey – where else is it legal to do that?”

Saturday, 11/06 – Awoke at 8:30am and made it to Office Max by 9:00 to photocopy the programs and deliver them back to the studio by 10:00.  Headed to Bloomingdale’s where to buy some Spanx for my cousin Tara’s wedding that evening.  Wedding ceremony and reception lasted from 5:00-10:30.  Lots of food and alcohol.  Left the reception with friends of mine, Ashley and Bob (who also got married 3 weeks ago), and met my college roommate at a bar around the corner.  More drinking.

Sunday, 11/07 – Woke up around 8:30 with a massive hangover. Popped 4 Advil and ate leftover wedding cake.  I realized that the bracelets I wore to the wedding were so heavy, that when I was dancing around they actually left BRUISES on my wrist and hand! War wounds definitely prove how awesome I was at cutting a rug lol.  Ash and Bob left around 9:30.  I ran around and did some light food shopping, went to my grandparents’ and my aunt Stacey’s house to pick up a package.

So, now that you’re caught up to date, I can get down to the details of this post:  Transitions!  The first call was last night.  There are three other women on the Sunday night call with me, along with my trainer.  Last night was just an introductory call.  We were assigned to write our commitment statements and our relationships with food.  A part of this exercise was to also state what we expect to gain from the program and challenges we may face, as well as plans to overcome those challenges.  Here are some of mine written below.

“I, Rachel Iannotti, promise to read the entire Transitions Daily Journal and put forth my best efforts to follow all components of the Transitions Lifestyle System.  My date for starting the program to become healthier and leaner is November 7, 2010.”  And I wrote my signature.

Write down why it is important for you to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle.
It is important for me to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle for lots of health reasons.  I have symptoms of hypoglycemia/low blood sugar.  By following Transitions, I will be able to manage healthy glucose levels.

Make a list of all the challenges you may face and how you will overcome them.

Potential Challenge – Plans to Overcome
Over-eating at home – No eating past 8:00pm
Getting caught off guard – Plan meals ahead of time
Feeling guilty for cheating – Do not berate myself

Today is also day 8 of the 21 Days Before Thanksgiving challenge.  Since I did not exercise for the past 5 days of the challenge, I’m just going to follow the program for the next 2 weeks and make up for the missed days during the week of Thanksgiving.  Today was a great start for me.  I power walked and jogged 4 miles!  I used one of Leslie Sansone’s workout DVDs and it took me about an hour to complete.  That’s 60 minutes of cardio!  I also used a resistance band for one of the miles as well.  What a great start to my week!

Before I sign off, I have a bit of an issue that I’m hoping you might give me advice with.  Everyone knows how important it is to drink at least 64oz. of water each day, but I find that as the temperature drops, it becomes harder for me to remember to drink water every hour or so.  Does anyone else have this challenge?  If so, what is your idea to drink more water?  I’ve been drinking a lot of hot tea lately, which is essentially just flavored hot water.  Any other thoughts?

Goodnight folks!  Until next time.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Happy Election Day!

I hope you all rocked the vote today.  I can’t stress enough how important it is to vote.  It’s your civic duty.  Exercise your right to be informed and to choose.  Okay, I’m off the soapbox.

So. Did everyone have a wonderful Tuesday?  Today didn’t start out on the right foot for me.  I set my alarm to go off at 6:00 this morning, and the next thing I know, my eyeballs popped open at 8:06.  Yikes!  I’m always on the train by this time.  Lucky for me, my workplace is casual and relaxed. I sent a text to my boss and said I’d be in around 10:30.  No biggie.  As I was getting ready to put my sneakers on to head out the door, I realized that my argyle socks were inside out!  Oh well.

Being that I was in a rush, I made the not-so-healthy choice of a bagel and cream cheese for breakfast.  There is an Au Bon Pain (conveniently) located in the concourse of the train station, so I figured it can’t hurt.

Next stop was Starbucks. I usually indulge in their pumpkin spice latte, but seeing as it’s November, the peppermint mocha is back. So I had to get it.  My first peppermint mocha of the season, and probably my last.  Because Transitions starts on Sunday!  I talked to Meredith today and she said that there are definitely three people on the Sunday call, and possibly as many as five.  I may as well get the indulgences in now before I make the jump to cut out my bad dietary habits.

Work was a crazy blur, as usual.  We have a performance coming up this Thursday and Friday.  YOU need to buy your tickets!  There is also an after party on Friday immediately following the performance, hosted by yours truly.  I’ll be tending bar that night too.  My company was fortunate enough to have a beer sponsorship by Philly-based Yards Brewery.  So, beer and wine tastings are included with your door fee.  $25.  Tax deductible.  Come!

Didn’t have a chance to eat lunch until 3:30 today.  I got a chicken salad sandwich on rye toast from my favorite pizzeria, City View Pizza, on 16th & Spring Garden.  This sandwich was massive.  I’m telling you, it could have fed a small country.  I only ate half and saved the other.  Lunch tomorrow!  While we’re on the topic of City View Pizza, I highly recommend their BBQ chicken pizza.  Seriously.  It’s slammin’.  And when you dip it in ranch dressing – heavenly.  Their slices are ginormous as well, so one slice will definitely satisfy.  I have to put that on my list for lunch this week.  Last slice of pizza for a bit!  And, since I will be changing jobs, I won’t be around the corner from the joint anymore.  Next time I am in the neighborhood, I can look forward to CVP as a treat.  Treats aren’t so bad in moderation.

Today marks the second day of the 21-Day Challenge!  Day two was a light exercise day and only required a 1-mile walk plus upper body strength training.  I did complete the one mile DVD, plus I used 3-pound hand weights.  I also walk to work everyday from the train, so that’s one mile each way.  I completed a total of three miles on foot today!  That deserves a pat on the back J

Here’s a little tip from me before I sign off for the night.  If you go into itunes and search Gabrielle Bernstein, you’ll be able to download her meditations right onto your ipod.  When I first put them on my ipod, they were free downloads.  I’m not sure if they are still free, but it’s worth checking out.  One of my favorite meditations is the Sleeping Meditation.  Every night when I go to bed, I put that meditation on repeat.  Just a few deep breaths and I am out like a light.  Gabrielle explains when you are in a meditative state, you calm your beta frequency brain waves and relax into your alpha frequency brain waves.  When your brain is in the alpha state, your mind is very creative.  In the Sleeping Meditation, Gabby helps you to practice calm breathing.  At night when I lie in bed, I inhale and say to myself “I have courage.”  When exhaling, I think “I have faith.”  I repeat the breathing pattern and use different phrases – peace, serenity, calm, acceptance, etc.  And I always end with breathing in “stillness” and breathing out “silence.”  Works every time.

Let me know how things are working out for you!  Thanks for the comments and emails.  I’ve received a few already.  Keep them coming!

Live well,

Monday, November 1, 2010

"I woke up this morning, the sunshine was shining.  I put on my happy face." - Destiny's Child

Hi everyone.  How was your Monday?  I can't complain.  I have two more weeks before I start my new job, so now I am just relaxing and enjoying the time off before I go back to work full time.

Today is Day 1 of the 21-Day Challenge!  I started off the day well!  I woke up at 8:00, laced up my sneaks and popped in one of my favorite walking DVDs. Today's challenge required a 3-mile walk to be completed in 45 minutes or less.  And that I did!  I thought I would be tired and winded, seeing as I have not done a Leslie Sansone exercise in a few months, but turns out, it's just like riding a bike.  And, it was a great aerobic workout.

I sat down after my workout and plugged into my ipod.  I always start my day with a quiet meditation, one of Gabrielle Bernstein's exercises.  Usually her Morning Meditation.  Her voice is calm and soothing.  I love that I can just zone out the world and create my own little utopia.  That's the power of meditation.

I had a doctor's appointment today and I was completely enamored by the foliage on my commute home.  I exited Rt. 1 and came to a stop off the exit ramp.  There were rows and rows of trees, all different shapes and sizes, in beautiful colors of reds, oranges and goldenrod yellows. If I hadn't taken 10 minutes this morning to set my intentions with love and gratitude, I guarantee you I wouldn't have paid any attention to anything around me (only my growling stomach).

Today was also fantastic because I was able to enjoy the company of my college roommate, Maria.  We had lunch at our favorite diner, the Eagle Diner, where we munched on their award-winning salad bar and coffee.  I enjoyed a piece of cheesecake as well (hey, Transitions hasn't started yet!), since I was in such good company I wouldn't be able to berate myself.

We sat at the diner drinking coffee and chatting for about 2 hours.  We then headed to Maria's apartment to engage in classic Bloomsburg University-style roommate bonding.  We watched about 5 hours of trashy, on demand cable tv (including Jersey Shore, Intervention and Teen Mom) and had grilled cheese for dinner. Maria then brought out the boxed wine and everything we had planned on doing went out the window. That's what happens when you drink vino - you don't get anything accomplished.

Here we are graduating from college.  May 2006

We did, however, make plans to cook for Maria's 27th birthday in 3 weeks.  She's inviting some friends over for food, drink and good times.  I'm looking forward to it.  I really miss that we don't live together anymore :( Those were two of the best years of my college life.  I sometimes wish I could go back to college, when all my friends lived no more than a few blocks away, and my only "problems" were deciding what to wear to the bar.  Le sigh.

Until next time.  Over and out.

Happy healthy,