Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Convenience of Carbs

Thanks for the comments on yesterday's post. I know that it doesn't seem like a big deal - it's not like I'm debating whether to have KFC or McDonalds, but more like salad with corn or without! - but there was just something about being in that situation that made me feel uncomfortable. I actually lay in bed thinking about it for at least an hour last night! Still, I think I've made my decision - we'll just have to see what it is on Friday!

I had a good day today in terms of exercise. I did my usual yoga and abs routine at 4:30 this morning. Today, as part of this week's mindfulness challenge with the WLC and just because I've been really wanting to, I focused a lot more on balance. I did quite a few poses on my tiptoes - from just standing and raising my arms above my head, to coming down into squat position, then on just one leg, etc. etc. Each time I started to shake I tried to mentally focus and talk to myself. What is going on? Why are you shaking? How can you move your body so that you can balance more (e.g. a lot of times I turn my feet outwards, but turning them inwards could help me gain more balance)? So on and so forth. I know a lot of it has to do with core strength but the other part is definitely to do with concentration. I need to find it in me to be still (in my mind and in my body). It was a good exercise; I continued this focus in my postures during Body Balance class today. My flexibility has definitely improved. I'm finally able to do the prasarita pose with my forearms and elbows plus forehead fully on the floor. Man what a stretch! It felt amazing!

Here's a picture of what it looks like (though I also had my forehead down on the floor):

I then had CrossFit in the evening.

Our warm-up was: 1 minute each of
- tire flips
- hanging leg raises
- burpees
- kettlebell swings
- hand-release push-ups

Just that alone had me dripping with sweat!

Then, I did snatches for the first time! I definitely need practice, but I think I did alright for my first go. I did many, many practice reps and ended up snatching a final weight of 30kg (66lbs) though I was much more comfortable at 25kg (55lbs).

Our WOD was another killer:
21 thrusters (25kg)
21 pull ups
21 deadlifts (50kg)
21 burpees

That's all that was written on the board. As we looked at the workout we were all kinda feeling intimidated. Each exercise at 21 reps - that's a lot!

That's when our Coach added two more rounds -- same exercises at 15 reps each then 9 reps each.

All of our jaws dropped. It felt impossible. It was taking a bit of time to set up all the stations and as each minute passed, the anxiety towards the workout kept building. We were all nervously looking at each other - first of all wondering how we were going to survive the first round, let alone the other two.

After a while the Coach said that me and another girl could stop after doing two rounds. It was at that moment when I thought, 'Hell no. Why shouldn't I finish the last round? If others can do it, so can I - even if it kills me.'

I'm so glad I completed the whole WOD. My hands are totally calloused; some skin has even ripped off, but I feel good. It was tough, but I tried and completed the workout. The only way I'm going to improve is if I keep on working at it. Just gotta make sure that my hesitant thoughts don't get in the way of my potential achievement.

I've also started finally started my Fitness Nutrition coursework - very interesting. So far it's all kinda the obvious stuff (eat less, move more) but they're getting into the scientific reasoning behind why it's important and how it will affect your body. I'll share what I'm learning as I go along :)

I've definitely hit my stride with my eating. I'm beginning to see that a lot of foods, namely carbs (bread, rice, pasta), were eaten because they were there and because they'd add a little something to my meal ... and most of all, because they were convenient.

For example, I was in a rush yesterday morning and I couldn't decide what to eat for breakfast. I didn't really want a big breakfast, but I didn't want to skip it either. Before, having a bowl of cereal or grabbing a slice of toast would have solved the problem. No stress. No worries. Just quickly fix and eat.  Similar issues come up with other meals too. For lunch I had smoked salmon with a few cucumber slices, and a bit of whole grain mustard. It wasn't the most fantastically delicious meal, but it was fine. I got my pure protein in as well as a few veggies. I know in the past I would have eaten that along with a slice or two of whole wheat bread. Having the bread wouldn't have been the worst thing in the world - but it was unnecessary. It is unnecessary ...

I think that's what I'm learning most through this challenge. I can do without so many of these things that before seemed like they were an essential component to my food.

Last night's dinner was grilled shrimp with bell peppers and sugar snap peas. It would have been the perfect filling for a shrimp fajita. All I needed was the tortilla wrap, maybe a bit of sour cream, and then some salsa ... but I didn't need it. The shrimp/veggie combo was enough.

Before understanding that it was enough, however, I hesitated and questioned if it would really be enough? It's this mental obstacle that has to be overcome. Not having a bit of bread or something else along with the meal wouldn't mean that I'd be starving! It wouldn't even mean that my meal was incomplete. I just didn't need it, and the food tasted absolutely fine.

This whole exercise of being aware of what you're eating, why you're eating, how you're eating, etc. has been so good so far!

Day 12 and I'm feelin' fine :)


  1. I find it really interesting that you say about carbs being convenient. I have never thought about it like that before but its definitely true though! S xx

    1. I know. I didn't think about it that way either, but not having carbs has made me realize that finding substitutes (usually just a larger portion of whatever I'm having) is just as easy :)

  2. That shrimp dinner sounds good.

    1. It was yummy :) I cook with bell peppers a lot - they add a nice flavorful crunch as well as good color.

  3. I love yoga, I use to do mine in the morning too. And I will get back to that in the winter do to my schedule, but right now I can do those workouts in the afternoon and boy am I a lot more flexible in the afternoons then first thing in the morning.

    1. I'm definitely not as flexible in the mornings as I am after I've warmed-up a bit later in the day ... but taking time to center my breathing before starting my day feels good :)


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