Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

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Monday, September 28, 2009


Well, it's Monday and I am off. *happy dance* My company's owners are Jewish and they observe Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. Okay, so I'm not really dancing, because that would be disrespectful. But I am happy and I do wish them a peaceful holiday.

So, Saturday was my long run. I was slated to go 7.5, but instead went 8 miles. 8 MILES. I can hardly believe it. I won't lie. it was a tough run, but I learned later that everyone was having a difficult time of it. The humidity came back and the air was just so thick.

I am happy to report that I still maintained ~13.5 pace, so that was good. The next morning though I was pretty worthless. I can't believe that extra half mile did me in!

Cassie did her first Race on Saturday too... a Kid K and did fantastic!

That's really all I have. I need to catch a quick nap before I take Cass for her 5 year well visit. She's at least getting 1 shot -- so I know we'll end up at Toys R Us! LOL

Friday, September 25, 2009

Friday Fill♥Ins #143

And...here we go!

1. One week ago I was doing this very same thing!

2. I used to love baking with Gram when I was young.

3. Mama told me., "If you really want to do something bad enough, you find a way to to make it happen."

4. "Hubs" we're a good team; you and me.

5. Take your time and be present.

6. No thanks... not much for Indian cuisine. I will pass!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Chillaxing, tomorrow my plans include a 7.5 mile run, domestic goddessing and yet another birthday party and Sunday, I want to, no I need to, brick to prep for the Du on 10/11!!!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Happy 5th Birthday to my Baby Girl

Happy birthday to my Daughter, Cassandra Rose, who turns 5 today. I can hardly believe how fast time flies. I remember being so worried, wondering how I'd learn to be maternal... be a good Mom. I thought it was going to feel so unatural, yet today I can't imagine my life without her. I watch this video and still get teary eyed. :)

Thursday Thirteen - Career Path Considerations

I enjoy technology, but after 20+ years I'm so burnt out. This case of burnout has lasted for a number of years now, and I always say that after my last layoff, if I didn't find this job and work for such a great place, I would not be doing it. Still, I'm not happy in IT. I'm not getting any younger; I need to figure out what I want to do when I grow up. So here's 13 things to consider with regard to a total change in career path.

1) In my 20's I wanted to be an EMT. Seriously.

2) I need to do something where I can help others make a difference in their lives (as trite as that may sound). By making a difference in someone else's life, it will make a difference in mine.

3) I enjoy learning about nutrition and wellness, even though my own biochemistry and metabolism baffle me!

4) I've considered physical therapy, physical therapy assistant or personal trainer.

5) I've considered nutrition - as a dietician

6) I've recently thought about chiropratice wellness; perhaps chiropractor or chiropractic assistant.

7) One thing I've read is that you should find something you can spend hours doing and not have a care, and pursue whatever "that" is.

8) I've thought about something with digital imaging. Making movies from pictures, web design, digital scrapping. I can spend hours at the computer playing with pictures and time just flies.

9) Not sure that I want to work for myself, but the ability to work from home would be a nice plus as it would help with family logistics.

10) I still feel frustration (and get quite sick to my stomach) when I think about how many college credits I lost because I did not matriculate to a full degree (quit 2/3's into my 3rd year) the first time around. It's like starting over. Starting over is bad enough, but starting over at almost 42? It just sounds crazy -- though I know it's not.

11) When I was younger I wanted to be a music teacher with a concentration in voice. After auditioning, I received and turned down a partial scholarship to Westminster Choir College for 2 reasons: 1) Mom pounded my head with the notion that it would be too competitive and because of my weight I wouldn't find work. 2) We just didn't have the money and I thought guidance for the financial side of things (procuring loans and financial aid) would come from my family, and it didn't -- they didn't have a clue; none of them went to college. Eventually I got it together on my own and went to Rutgers, until I quit a few years into it (see number 10).

12) Anything is possible when you put your mind to it. This I really believe. That said, I don't have time to fart around trying to figure out what *it* is, and I don't have the time to make a huge mistep and pursue the wrong path.

13) Logically, I know following a path in technology would be the most practical way to go, since I have 20+ years experience in the field, but I just don't know how happy I'd be. Ugh!


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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Run! Don't Walk! Meet Tricia!!

Go now and play for a giveaway.

While you're there, meet Tricia, the author of "Fight Fat Phobia"

If you're one of the brave and decide to leave her a video of a sexy dance, I wanna know!

What am I talking about? Go check it out. You'll see. :)

How do you want to be remembered?

"We can be remembered as the generation who chose to drag the arguments of the 20th century to the 21st, who put off our choices, refused to look ahead, failed to keep pace because we defined ourselves by what we were against instead of what we were for. Or, we can be a generation that chooses to see the shoreline beyond the rough waters ahead and comes together to serve the common interest of human beings, and finally give meaning to the promise embedded in the name given to this institution, the UNITED Nations. That is the future America wants."

Barack Obama, President of the United States
From his Frist Address to the United Nations, 9/23/09

That's just one of my favorite snippets from his speech. It might have been intended to address the United Nations, however there is a general life lesson, in it of itself, that any individual regardless of politics, could take from it.

I just spent my lunch hour watching this speech (time well spent, I would add). I thought it was awesome. Decidedly blunt and direct. No mincing of words. Spoke straight about expectations each country should have for themselves, pointing out so many of the struggles we have in common, instead of focusing on the issues of disagreement what breakdown relations. Really, a very good speech

No Speedplay

So last night's speedwork never happened. I apparently went to the wrong location. When I got there it was all the aweseome superfast folks. Kudos for me going, because it was raining. But I don't know why I couldn't get out of the car and run with them.

Well, I mean I know why... but why couldn't I get past it? I just felt so self-conscious. If my B2 group was there, I woud have had no problem and would have enjoyed the extra oxygen the rain brings with it.

I'm sitting there, looking around and no teammates. I waited 40 minutes, then decided I'd use the time to go watch my Daughter in her gymnastics class, which I normally miss, because I'm running. On the way there my friend called,

Hombre: "Where are you?"
Me: "I just left the high school."
Hombre: "Which school?"
Me: "Clear Lake."
Hombre: "B is over here at Clear Creek with 2 others."

Me: "Doh!"

That explains why only the superfast were there. LOL Everything is named after some kind of body of water around here -- and I'll have you know, none of it is "clear."

I swear I never saw anything posted anywhere about training at this location, but it wouldn't surprise me if I missed it.

Today the rain has got to hold out. I need to brick badly. I have 18 days until the run/bike/run Du and I haven't bricked in probably 6 weeks? Wonder how many bricks I could actually fit in between now and then. LOL

Nothing else going on really.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Food Find: Goodheart's Beef Merlot

Typically I'm not one for frozen foods, however they do have their place in the land of convenience. I just try an opt for the least processed options. In the land of frozen foods, good choices, not tainted with a gazillion additives and preservatives, are few and far between.

Shopping at Walmart last week I found 2 items, both by Goodheart's Brand. I can't find a website for these specific products, but there is a general site and it looks like they might supply food for restaurants. Interesting.

I bought the chicken broccoli and the beef merlot versions. Hubs ate the chicken broccoli and I tried the beef merlot today.

It's super easy, because it's steam-in-bag. In less time than it takes for me to run a 1/2 mile it's done. 6 minutes total from freezer to pie-hole. :)

As for taste, the first word that came to mind was "fresh." The broccoli, cauliflower and carrots all tasted fresh. The beef? Well, it was frozen beef, but the pieces weren't so tough that you thought you were chewing a piece of Laffy Taffy, as is usually the case with frozen beef (in my opinion anyway). I added some red pepper flakes and it was pretty good. I would eat it again, if I really wasn't watching my intake of broccoli, cauliflower and soy because of my Thyroid issues.

It is two servings per bag. I can eat the whole bag; I know... *gasp*. Cooked veggies go down easy, plus they say they are 1 cup servings, but I think they're talking about an unpacked 1 cup. Still at $2.50 a bag, it's a great, minimally processed choice over other frozen choices. 150 calories per serving, 3 grams of fat and 15 grams of protein -- so there's some value to the nutiritional content, though it is not 100% "all natural" as the packaging claims; there are a couple additives.

I do appreciate the effort Goodheart's makes to put out something that is a healthy option among the frozen food meals. I also appreciate the seemingly full disclosure on the label. No secrets.



Vegetables: Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, onions

strong>Sauce: water, brown sugar, tomato paste, merlot wine, food startch (native), xanthan gum, guar gum, sunflower oil, soy sauce (water, wheat, soy beans, salt), vegetable oil, minced onion, granulated garlic, vinegar, ground ginger, butter flavor (water, starter distilate)

Meat: Fully cooked seasoned beef sirloin, water and binder product (water, wheat, woybeans salt) 2% or less of the following: foot startch-unmodified, soy protein concentrate, granulated garlic, salt, spices

Contains: soy, wheat

Questionable ingredients:

*As for the unmodified corn starch, at least it is "unmodified", meaning no chemical additives.

As for the Xantham Gum, it is a polysaccharide used as a food additive and rheology modifier. It is produced by fermentation of glucose or sucrose by the Xanthomonas campestris bacterium.

*As for Guar Gum, it is primarily the ground endosperm of guar beans. The guar seeds are dehusked, milled and screened to obtain the guar gum. It is typically produced as a free flowing, pale, off-white colored, coarse to fine ground powder.

* As for the "butter flavor" is made of. It's a chemical. :( Boo-hiss.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Pre-race and Post-race Tips for the Newbie

Pre-race and Post-race Tips for the Newbie
From Runner's World
- "Ask the Running Doc"
Dr. Lewis G. Maharam is the world’s premier running physician.

As for pre- and post-race tips, I thought it best to review how you should/will feel, and what you should do when you finish.

Running or walking a half or full marathon distance is not a walk around the block. Even with the best of training, you will not feel “normal” at the finish. Of course you will have done the salt, drunk for thirst, taken a baby aspirin, and run/walked within your limits so nothing physiologically is “wrong.” You will feel tired -- exhausted, even -- and your muscles and feet will ache from the repetitive exercise you have performed over hours on race day. Expect this. Think of it as “getting your money’s worth”!

“Nothing new” race weekend means nothing new as far as eating, clothing, and exercise that you practice during your training months. To prevent or really lessen post-event muscle soreness, follow these guides:

Practice proper eating in training the the night before your long runs/walks make sure you include protein with the carbs, a little fat and only a little roughage (so it doesn’t haunt you race morning!). Do not make your plate at the pasta party look like your “last meal”; make it look like your regular night-before training meal. Your meal the night before should not only be pasta; add some protein to have necessary amino acids on board for recovery.

No new shoes or clothing for race day. Be sure everything is worn in, and not too old, by race day. We want to prevent blisters and chaffing.

No new stretches or stretching out. Make sure you have a good flexibility routine and don’t have someone teach you something new race weekend. Stick with what you have been doing. One month out, you should be in the same routine for the race.

During training, if you have a new ache or pain, get checked by a sports doctor early so it doesn’t mushroom into something that will not allow you to do your race. If you develop new chest pain or shortness of breath during training, please go to the doctor and be checked before your event.
Practice only drinking for thirst and drinking the sports drink that will be on the course of your event; check the event web site to find out what sports drink they will be serving.

The day of your race, eat the same as you do on long training runs/walks: same food, same number of hours before. You may like to try my favorite pre-race meal in training: the “Elvis Bagel” (peanut butter and banana on a bagel). This gives you some protein for muscle/ligament/tendon repair as well as carbs and energy for the event.

Do not take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (Advil, ibuprofen, Aleve, Motrin, etc.) from the night before and during the race, as they are a risk for hyponatremia. If you must, take Tylenol (acetaminophen) during the race -- only as prescribed on the bottle.

If you develop a pain that changes your running form -- or if you just don’t "feel right" -- stop at a medical station for a quick evaluation on the race course. Our medical teams are there to help you.

After the event, within 2 hours of finishing, have a recovery drink with protein in it. There are commercial products but chocolate milk works as good as all these scientific mixes. Time to indulge if you like it.

“Marathon feet” are common to get in the middle of the night post race for first timers. Participants complain their feet hurt so much, they can’t even put a comforter over their feet. This again is due to inflammation of the soft tissue structures and easily preventable. When you get back to your home or hotel room, a simple immersion in an ice bath for 15 minutes will prevent this happening to you!

Post-event muscle soreness is an issue everyone complains of the next day. Follow these tips to lessen the ache:

Do not get a post event massage until a minimum of 2 hours after finishing the race. The lactic acid needs a chance to buffer to a neutral pH before it gets moved around. And even then, do not allow any “deep tissue” work for a minimum of 72 hours since the muscles/ligaments/tendons are all still inflamed and friable and deep tissue work can give more

Do not try any new stretches or have someone stretch you out again until 72 hours have passes to allow for those soft tissues to heal and not be injured more.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (again: Advil, Motrin, Alleve, Ibuprofen, etc.) that we told you not to take during the event, can be taken after you finish and have urinated once. By then you are no longer at risk for hyponatremia that these meds can help cause. These meds do reduce inflammation and if they don’t bother your stomach can be taken as recommended on the bottle.

If you feel really sore the next day, besides cool showers and NSAIDs, see your sports doc for an inection of Torodol. This is an injectable NSAID that is so powerful, it has the pain-relieving effect of morphine without any narcotic side effects. It is a miracle injection; you will feel great within 2 hours of the injection.

Give yourself two or three days of rest before starting your training again. Try a nice swim in these days, but allow yourself some recovery time. You will feel better for it.

Again, congratulations. We hope to see you at many events in the future.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Another Personal Best!

Today was my long run. 7 miles.

Never in my life have I ran 7 miles and if you asked me a few months ago if I thought I could, I would have said "yes" in an effort to make myself believe something that I couldn't quite completely fathom.

This morning's run was good. I felt good. I was worried that after Thursday's run, when my legs felt super heavy, that I was doomed for today. Plus I didn't know for sure if I was fully recovered from that severe sinus infection. I'm still coughing up goo. :(

One of my friends said 7 miles was a significant mile marker. She said she knew when she reached 7 miles, that she finally started to believe she'd make it through the half. I think there's some truth in that.

I ate well last night, protein, carbs and veggies. Didn't overdo it.

I did not eat breakfast this morning -- not normal for me, but I didn't have enough wait time after taking my levoxyl and I didn't want to eat too close to starting my run. I did make sure I brought some gel with me. I tried CarbBoom Double-espresso. It was pretty good.

I got to the half way point and forgot to take it, so it wasn't until mile 4, or shortly thereafter, but I did feel an improvement. I think I will keep the gel as part of my run routine.

Anyway, I crossed the finish in 1 hour, 35 minutes. I did 6 miles in 1 hour, 22 minutes the week before, so I think I'm holding my own!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Food Journal - ZzZzZzZzzzz

Oikos Organic Vanilla Greek Yogurt
Bare Naked FIT Granola
2 T. Dried Cranberries
Pomegranite Applesauce
Organic Half-n-Half

AM Snack
Nature's Own Whole Wheat English Muffin
RF Organic Cream Cheese

Light Dressing
Iceberg Lettuce
4 oz. Chicken breask
2 T. cranberries
1/2 oz. chopped Walnuts
1/2 green apple

PM Snack
Almond Cashew Kind Bar

Pork Loin
Green Beans

Calories: 1,390
Protein: 103 g.

Tri Friend Blog

Here's a great inspirational/motivational blog... get fit through training.

Fat Girl To Fit Girl™

Snipped from her blog:

"When I turned 49 in May 2008, I decided I wanted to go from a sedentary lifestyle to an active one. When I started this blog, I wasn’t going on another diet. Plans change and I found myself back at Weight Watchers in July because I was getting nowhere on my own. It was the best thing I could have ever done for myself.

As of today, Sept 14, 2009, I’m down 61.2 pounds, I’m running, swimming and biking, I completed a duathlon in April, my first mini triathlon on August 1 and the Trek Women Sprint Triathlon (400-meter swim, 9-mile bike, 3.1-mile run) on Sept. 13, where I took 3rd place in the Athena category!

Now that triathlon season is over until Spring, I’ll be checking out Pilates, Zumba and working on strength training along with my triathlon training. I’ll be looking for some runs this fall and I can’t wait until next year’s Tri season.

I still have weight to lose, but I’m definitely a Fit Girl now!"

Friday Fill♥Ins #142

And...here we go!

1. My car needs an oil change and new registration sticker.

2. Yom Kippur is coming up next. (I get the day off; owners are Jewish!)

3. Lately, things seem to be slowing down, in a way, but still crazy.

4. Going to workout is one of my favorite 'hiding' places.

5. What happened to civility?

6. If you believe it is not impossible!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to resting, tomorrow my plans include a 7 mile run and a birthday party and Sunday, I want to finish all the laudry and actually get it put away.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Updates and my unsolicited Thoughts

All things Thyroid
Dr. B's office finally called. And, once again, we're changing up how we dose the Levoxyl.

.175 mcg everydaytoo much
.100 mcg every day too much
.88 mcg every day too little
Alternating .100/.88 each daytoo little

Now, we're going to try .100 mcg Monday through Friday and .88 on the weekends.

So, starting today we'll proceed as described. I go back in 4 weeks ...another month. Ugh!

In other news some of my tri club friends are headed out to OKC for the Redman Triathlon. I think most of them are doing the half ironman/70.3 distance; the distance I hope to do one day -- maybe even next year, depending on how my Oly distance training goes and pans out. :) Oh, yeah, that and if completing the half-marathon doesn't kill me and just makes me stronger. LOL

Not sure if I posted it.. probably not because I'm not 100% sure it will happen, but I did sign up to volunteer for Ironman Florida the weekend of my b'day, November 7th. Again, some of my tri club friends are participating, including Cathy, my local She-ro. :) Darren and I have a plan... we just have to see if execution is possible.

I'm finally feeling better. I was completely out of it the greater part of the week, since last Friday, with a killer sinus infection. Left me feeling like I had a virus of sorts... it was awful. I'm on the upswing today, after about 5 days of misery. I'll be running for the first time since last Thursday night.

Vits and Sups
I have decided to ditch my Flintstone's Complete (per my surgeon's protocol) and changed to Bariatric Advantage. I'm trying their chewable Multi with high AEDK. I've never had a problem with Iron, so we'll see what happens. I've also added Selenium and an extra Vitamin D3 for Thyroid supplort. I'm also giving their chewable calcium citrate a try.

Thoughts on Kanaye's antics?
Two words: Grow-up. Add to that what Leno said: "What would your mother say?" Kudos to Taylor for keeping her composure.

Thoughts on Serena's outburst?
Where did good sportsmanship go? I'm totally a fan girl, but very disappointed.

Thoughts on Senator Joe Wilson?
You're a grown man! Where did your ability to respect go? You may not care for Obama, and that's fine, but respect the proceedings of the government which you serve.

It's a sad state we are in when people act out in this way and don't seem genuinely sorry or remorseful. It is as if being "civil" is an artform slowly being lost.

Food Journal / Exercise

2 egg whites/ 1 egg
100% Whole Wheat English Muffin
.75 oz. lowfat colby/jack cheese

AM Snack
1 C. Organic Almond Milk

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup <--- Never thought I'd touch soup again!
1 Orowheat Whole Wheat Sandwhich Thin
3 oz. Turkey breast

PM Snack
Cranberry Almond Kind bar

Pre Run Snack
1/2 Apple & 2 T. Almond Butter

Lowfat Cottage Cheese & Pineapple

1,378 Calories total

40 Minutes - Tempo Intervals (Run)

Thursday Thirteen - Good Stuff About Folks I Know!

13 Things I love about some folks I know... because I don't always take the time to tell them or take the time to remember the reasons why they're special to me!

1) Hubs - His unconditional love and patience go unmatched to anyone I've ever known. SHMILY!

2) Mom - Her strength (though too strong for her own good sometimes) and her creativity. I'm glad to know the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

3) Sister - Her determination to change the past and not make it HER future. She sets a goal, is tenacious and sticks to it. I'm so proud of her in so many ways!!

4) Brother - Yeah, I don't speak of him very often. We don't have much of a relationship, but I love how talented he is with his music and art and I admire the fact that he's never given either up (though he could stand to make some better, more responsible decisions).

5) Beth - I love how smart you are and steadfast you are with your opinions. And yeah, I love that we share the same purse fetish. You are my sister from another mister. :)

6) Elysha - I love that you know you are, and know you are the kind of person who you want to be. You never let anything stand in the way of the fun you want to have in life.

7) Courtney - Your persistence knows no end, and under your awesome sarcastic wit is wisdom beyond your years -- and yes, you've managed to teach me a thing or two. :)

8) RJ - I so admire the fact that she leads by example... never asking more of others than she would do herself! She is a true "leader" and I am lucky to be working for her.

9) JJ - She's such a free spirit and is so open to having new experiences. I love how excited and passionate she gets about people, places and events.

10) Kim (yeah, you, in Chillicothe!) - I love knowing you're still out there, still checking on me. I see you breeze by the blog in my logs lurking (I don't know anyone else in Chillicothe on bright.net). I love the way we connected over the Internet so many years ago, and how you were there with me through some pretty tough times. I'm so glad we got the chance to meet on more than one ocassion! Though I do wish we lived closer. If you catch this post, email me your email address! It's been too long; we need to catch up!

11) AM - I love the that throughout the years, no matter how challenging life became, that you navigated through all of it and were never afraid to let yourself feel every emotion, even if it slowed you down in your journey to get to the place you are right now. I'm so happy to know you've found unconditional love from your husband and have fulfilled your dream of having/adopting a child.

12) Gram - I always loved how you just listened. You just listened and accepted me for me. I love you and miss you! I so wish you were here to meet Cassie.

13) Shannon - I love smart and resourceful you are! I appreciate the effort you make to ensure everyone has a good time. You are thoughtful and the love for your friends and family is evident in all that you do for them.


Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

20 Worst Supermarket Foods by Men's Health

Here it is... the 20 worst Supermarket Foods
by Men's Health

1. Worst Packaged Food in America
Marie Callender's Creamy Parmesan Chicken Pot Pie
1,060 calories
1,440 mg sodium
64 g fat (24 g saturated)

Marie Callender's perpetrates the ultimate sleight of hand here: The nutrition information says this medium-size entrée has two servings, but honestly, when have you ever split a potpie? Lard-strewn pastry tops and cream-based fillings are the lowest common denominators of the nutritionally nefarious potpie, and this one, with an ingredient list that reads like an O-Chem final, beats out dozens of horrendous iterations to earn this special place on our list.
Sodium Equivalent: 8 small bags of potato chips
Fat Equivalent: 23 strips of bacon
Calorie Equivalent: 7 Taco Bell Fresco Beef Tacos

Eat This Instead!
Marie Callender's Oven Baked Chicken (369 g)
320 calories
990 mg sodium
12 g fat (3 g saturated)

2. Worst Frozen Entrée
Hungry-Man Classic Fried Chicken
1,020 calories
1,570 mg sodium
57 g fat (12 g saturated)

They should rename the company Hungry-Men, because there's no way a single man needs more than a pound of fatty fried chicken, oily potatoes, and a brownie.
Calorie Equivalent: 5 Krispy Kreme Original Glazed Doughnuts

Eat This Instead!
Banquet Select Chicken Parmesan
350 calories
870 mg sodium
15 g fat (3.5 g saturated)

3. Worst Frozen Pizza
DiGiorno for One Garlic Bread Crust Supreme Pizza
850 calories
1,450 mg sodium
44 g fat (15 g saturated, 3.5 g trans)

The bloated crust and the greasy toppings will saddle you with 60 percent of your day's sodium, 75 percent of your day's saturated fat, and nearly twice the amount of trans fats you should take in daily.
Calorie Equivalent: 6 slices Domino's Thin N Crispy Cheese Pizza

Eat This Instead!
South Beach Diet Deluxe Pizza
340 calories
660 mg sodium
11 g fat (4 g saturated)

4. Worst Frozen Breakfast
Jimmy Dean Pancake and Sausage Links Breakfast Bowls
710 calories
890 mg sodium
31 g fat (11 g saturated)

As if the calories, fat, and refined carbohydrates weren't bad enough, Jimmy D tops the whole thing with two Hershey's bars' worth of sugar.
Calorie Equivalent: 6 bowls of Froot Loops

Eat This Instead!
Jimmy Dean D-lights Breakfast Bowls Turkey Sausage (198 g)
230 calories
730 mg sodium
7 g fat (3 g saturated)

5. Worst Stir-Fry
Bertolli Grilled Chicken Alfredo & Fettuccine Complete Skillet Meal for Two (1?2 package, 340 g)
710 calories
1,370 mg sodium
42 g fat (22 g saturated)

A dinner for two should get your blood flowing, not stuff your arteries with more than the entire day's saturated fat.
Saturated Fat Equivalent: 22 strips of bacon

Eat This Instead!
Birds Eye Steamfresh Meals for Two Grilled Chicken in Roasted Garlic Sauce (1?2 bag, 340 g)
340 calories
880 mg sodium
13 g fat (5 g saturated)

6. Worst Packaged Lunch
Oscar Mayer Maxed Out Turkey & Cheddar Cracker Combo Lunchables (1 package)
680 calories
61 g sugars
22 g fat (9 g saturated, 1 g trans)
1,440 mg sodium

Here's your first clue that this meal has issues: The ingredient list-in its squinty small type-is a full 4 inches long. It includes just about every form of fat and sugar you can imagine. Your child deserves better.

Calorie Equivalent: 15 Chicken McNuggets

Eat This Instead!
Oscar Mayer Deli Creations Fajita Beef & Salsa Flatbread (145 g)
280 calories
9 g fat (4 g saturated)
890 mg sodium

7. Worst Individual Snack
Hostess Chocolate Pudding Pie (1 pie)
520 calories
45 g sugars
24 g fat (14 g saturated, 1.5 g trans)

Skip past the enriched flour and water on the ingredient list and here's what you get: animal shortening, corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar, modified corn starch, butter, chocolate liqueur, and so on. Any one of these ingredients alone might prompt you to raise an eyebrow, but taken together they should invoke a gag reflex and a sprint for something far healthier.
Saturated Fat Equivalent: 2 McDonald's Quarter Pounders

Eat This Instead!
Chocolatey Drizzle Rice Krispies Treat
100 calories
8 g sugars
3 g fat (1 g saturated)

8. Worst Frozen Treat
Toll House Ice Cream Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwich (1 sandwich)
520 calories
23 g fat (9 g saturated)
44 g sugars

Do you really want more than a quarter of your day's calories to come from an ice-cream novelty? If you're going to take in this much fat and calories in one sitting, it better be dinner.
Calorie Equivalent: Two slices of hand-tossed pepperoni pizza from Pizza Hut

Eat This Instead!
Skinny Cow Low Fat Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwich (1 sandwich)
140 calories
2 g fat (1 g saturated)
15 g sugars

9. Worst Baked Good
Otis Spunkmeyer Banana Nut Muffins (1 muffin, 114 g)
460 calories
22 g fat (3 g saturated)
2 g fiber
32 g sugars

Despite popular belief, muffins are very rarely healthy. Case in point: The first ingredient in this muffin is sugar. The result is metabolic mayhem: Blood sugar climbs, pancreas goes into overdrive, and the body begins storing sugar as fat. Shortly after, you'll feel sluggish and crave more sugar.
Sugar Equivalent: 3 1?2 Rice Krispies Treats

Eat This Instead!
Vitalicious Apple Berry Muffin (1 muffin)
100 calories
0 g fat
5 g fiber
10 g sugars

10. Worst Packaged Side
Pasta Roni Fettuccine Alfredo (1 c prepared with 2% milk and margarine)
450 calories
25 g fat
(7 g saturated, 3.5 g trans)
1,140 mg sodium

Once again Alfredo proves itself to be the biggest belt-busting option on the shelf. This side has a meal's worth of calories, and if you try to turn it into a meal in itself, expect to top 1,000 calories.
Sodium Equivalent: 4 medium orders of McDonald's French fries

Eat This Instead!
Pasta Roni Nature's Way Olive Oil & Italian Herb (1 c prepared with water and olive oil)
250 calories
8 g fat (1.5 g saturated)
800 mg sodium

11. Worst Cereal
Quaker 100% Natural Granola, Oats, Honey & Raisins (1 c)
420 calories
12 g fat (7 g saturated)
6 g fiber
30 g sugars

Granola, for all its good reputation, is usually weighed down by a deluge of added sugars. In fact, for the same amount of sugar, you could have a bowl of Cocoa Pebbles more than twice the size-and you'd get more fiber and save about 60 calories in fat.
Calorie Equivalent: 8 chicken wings

Eat This Instead!
Kashi GOLEAN (1 c)
140 calories
1 g fat (0 g saturated)
10 g fiber
6 g sugars

12. Worst Frozen "Healthy" Entrée
Healthy Choice Complete Selections Sweet & Sour Chicken (340 g)
430 calories
9 g fat (1 g saturated)
600 mg sodium
29 g sugars

Since when has fried chicken been healthy? Certainly not when it's cloaked in sugar.
Sugar Equivalent: 2 scoops Breyers Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream

Eat This Instead!
Kashi Southwest Style Chicken (283 g)
240 calories
5 g fat (0 g saturated)
680 mg sodium

13. Worst "Healthy" Pantry Item
Pop-Tarts Whole Grain Brown Sugar Cinnamon (2 pastries)
400 calories
14 g fat (4 g saturated)
5 g fiber
28 g sugars

Whole grain ain't the whole truth. There's also a glut of vegetable oil and seven types of sugar stuffed inside.
Sugar Equivalent: 1 Snickers bar

Eat This Instead!
Sun-Maid Raisin English Muffins with Cinnamon (1 muffin)
170 calories
0.5 g fat (0 g saturated)
2 g fiber
13 g sugars

14. Worst Drink
AriZona Kiwi Strawberry (23.5-oz can)
353 calories
0 g fat
82 g sugars

It claims to be blended juice, but only 5 percent of this can is any sort of real-fruit derivative. The remaining 95 percent is a blend of water and high-fructose corn syrup.
Sugar Equivalent: 4 Original Fudgsicle Bars

Drink This Instead!
Tropicana Lime Raspberry Fruit Squeeze (15.2-oz bottle)
35 calories
0 g fat
7 g sugars

15. Worst Ice Cream
Häagen-Dazs Chocolate Peanut Butter (1?2 c)
360 calories
24 g sugars
24 g fat (11 g saturated)

Häagen-Dazs makes great-tasting ice cream with an impressively short ingredient list, but that doesn't make up for the fact that their pints are consistently the fattiest in the freezer.
Fat Equivalent: 1 McDonald's Double Cheeseburger

Eat This Instead!
Edy's Slow Churned Peanut Butter Cup (1?2 c)
130 calories
13 g sugars
6 g fat (3 g saturated)

16. Worst Condiment
Eggo Original Syrup (1?4 c)
240 calories
40 g sugars

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but not when this sugar slick hits the table. Excluding water, the first three ingredients are all different forms of sugar. If you want real syrup, make sure it's 100 percent maple.
Sugar Equivalent: Two Häagen-Dazs Vanilla & Almond ice cream bars

Eat This Instead!
Smucker's Sugar Free Breakfast Syrup (1?4 c)
20 calories
0 g sugars

17. Worst Candy
Twix (1 package, 2 oz)
280 calories / 27 g sugars
14 g fat (11 g saturated)

Twix takes the already-dubious candy-bar reputation and drags it through a murky pool of saturated fat. With more than half the USDA's daily consumption recommendation for these dangerous fats in each package, this is one hazardous after-lunch snack.
Saturated Fat Equivalent: 11 strips of bacon

Eat This Instead!
100 Grand (1 package)
190 calories
22 g sugars
8 g fat (5 g saturated)

18. Worst Yogurt
Stonyfield Farm Whole Milk Chocolate Underground (6 oz)
220 calories
5 g fat
(3 g saturated)
36 g sugars

Stonyfield is notorious for being a little too generous with the sugar, but the nearly 3 tablespoons in their Chocolate Underground is bad even by their supersweet standards. Not even Ben & Jerry's makes a flavor of ice cream with this much sugar.
Sugar Equivalent: 4 Cherry Popsicles

Eat This Instead!
Breyers' Cookies n'Cream YoCrunch Lowfat with Oreo Pieces (6 oz)
120 calories
2.5 g fat (1 g saturated)
11 g sugars

19. Worst Cookie
Pillsbury Big Deluxe Classics White Chunk Macadamia Nut (dough; 1 cookie, 38 g)
180 calories
10 g fat
(3 g saturated, 2 g trans)
13 g sugars

Stick to Nestlé Toll House when it comes to big-brand cookie dough; the people of Pillsbury have a penchant for scattering trans fats across your market's refrigerated section. This cookie has one load of dangerous oils mixed into the flour and another blended with sugar and interspersed throughout the dough as ""white confectionery chunks.""
Fat Equivalent: 5 ""fun"" size 3 Musketeers bars

Eat This Instead!
Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (1 1?2-inch ball, 28 g)
130 calories
6 g fat (2.5 g saturated)
11 g sugars

20. Worst Crunch Snack
Gardetto's Special Request Roasted Garlic Rye Chips (1?2 cup, 30 g)
160 calories
10 g fat
(2 g saturated, 2.5 g trans)
40 mg sodium

Gardetto extracts the worst part of its Original snack mix and tries to serve it as a gourmet snack-a sneaky move that might have serious repercussions for even casual munchers. Each single serving exceeds the amount of trans fat deemed safe to consume daily by the American Heart Association.
Fat Equivalent: 3 strips of bacon

Eat This Instead!
Snyder's of Hanover Sourdough Nibblers (16 pieces, 30 g)
120 calories
0 g fat
200 mg sodium

More Stars Tri!

From the Huffington Post:

"The Malibu Triathlon was Sunday in California. While J.Lo sat this year out, Teri Hatcher did it on her own, as did Mario Lopez. But who went faster? Lopez by a hair. Hatcher finished in 2:06:50, while Lopez did his in 2:03:17.

"The Bachelor" host Chris Harrison beat Lopez, coming in at 1:59:14.

Many others did individual legs in relay teams of three, like Jeremy Piven, William H. Macy, 'Brothers and Sisters' actor Matthew Rhys, Disney CEO Bob Iger, Felicity Huffman and David Chokachi."

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Because You Can't Fake This!

Taylor Swift kickin' back with her family, waiting for the CMA Announcements. I can't help but share it -- her excitement is so genuine and she is so sincere!

No matter what, that dude-who-tried-to-steal-her-moment says, he'll never be able to take this from her.

Watching the CMA Announcements!

What's up?

First. Not me.

I have been fighting sinus infection/sinusitis for several days now and it really has a hold on me. I just feel like the walking dead. My help desk tech is on drill service this week so she is out; there is no way I cannot be in the office. So here I am. "Here" is about all I am though. I knew if I stayed home, something would happen at work that would warrant me having to come in for something. But, since I'm here, nothing is breaking. That's Murphy's Law.

I went to the doc and got some scrips and I am hoping by tomorrow that I'll start to feel the cumulative effects of the meds. To make matters worse, I think I am also suffering a little rebound congestion from using nose spray -- right before everything came to ahead I noticed that I was stuffing up more quickly, and it was still to soon for another squirt. I think I'm getting past that now... I can actually breathe through one side. I mentioned how much I used the nosespray to the doc but she didn't seem too worried/interested. As soon as I realized the twice a day wasn't enough, I ceased using it.

No running last night or tonight. I would be delighted if I could brick tomorrow (I have a du in October to prep for), but if I can't so be it. I need to get well, fully, so I need the rest. Thursday I have a run. On Friday, usually an off day, I could make up an easy run. Saturday is my long run -- 7 miles this week (which would supercede my last PR!)

I'm over the DNS on Saturday. It's not like I had to pay for it. I only missed the opportunity to do better than I did last time. This Saturday's run is 7 miles. :)

Like the Wind

As a girl in the 80's I loved Patrick Swayze, as much as the next teen. As a girl in the 80's who grew up in a dance studio, Patrick Swayze was first introduced to me because of his dancing, and not necessarily his "hunk-dom" :)

He had quite a life; growing up right here in Houston, playing sports, football track and then training in classical ballet? Doing that here in Houston is probably more challenging than in NYC. An accomplished dancer to movie hunk. :)

I can't even count how many times, that as a teen, I watched Dirty Dancing (maybe more than 16 Candles) and wished I could have been "Baby" for just a few seconds. Which few seconds? Makes no matter! :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yfg97-5uhFQ

I'm sad that he's lost the tough fight with Pancreatic Cancer; what a strong fight it was.

There's that C-word again. I just hate it. Another reason to join the cause and help the fight to LiveSTRONG.

You're like the wind now Patrick -- peace to you and your family

Saturday, September 12, 2009

First DNS

I'm a big loser. I had my first DNS this morning. At least it wasn't a race I had to pay for.

Everything went from not feeling great to feeling worse. Aches, congestion, cough, chills... Ugh!

I was supposed to race in my running group's 10K this morning... I hoped for lightening; none appeared. They still ran in the rain. I'd be finished about 15 minutes ago.

Now I just feel like a slug. Even the tappng of the keyboard and chewing of my toast bothers my head.

Someone call the "Waaaaam-bu-lance"

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Fill-in #141

And...here we go!

1. That's a rotton way to be.

2. Dang it! Hey you; I'm over here!

3. The possibilities include: Pei Wei or eat my lunch I brought from home.

4. That new California Roll Salad is one of my favorite cool day recipes.

5. How will you know if he really loves you. (heard some Whitney this morning)

6. A lazy day and a stormy sky.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to having a good finish on my 10K race, tomorrow my plans include taking Cass-a-frass to Build-a-Bear and Sunday, I want to finish laundry and relax!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Thursday Thirteen -- Tri-style. :)

13 things that will remind me that I am, indeed, a triathlete:

1) When I am asked my age, and I automatically blurt out my "race age", even if it does make me year older than I technically am (race age = your age by the 12/31 of the current year)

2) My training time is limited more by my availability and not by how far I can swim/bike or run.

3) Like Mom's who carry Goldfish and Cheerios in their bag, I carry Cliff Bars, Shot Blocks and maybe a single-serve of CytoMax.

4) I have a seemingly endless supply of water bottles, safety pins and tee-shirts.

5) When a co-worker asks me what I am doing this weekend, I reply, "I'm running a 10K" but don't feel like that's REALLY a race.

6) I will probably spend more time seeking out the correct technical gear than I will when I purchase a new car.

7) Everybody knows that when I am even contemplating doing a race, or are just on the fence, that means I'm doing it. Although, nobody ever believes me when I say "never again" (I really do mean that about the 2010 MS150).

8) Bodygilde isn't just for racing; I've used it on non-training days when I've worn dresses/skirts.

9) Wherever I am there's hydration within reach.

10) My Domestic Financial Officer (DFO aka Hubs) suggests we ned a Triathlon budget category in Microsoft Money.

11) You actually eat "good" carbohydrates in moderation and don't feel badly about it.

12) I can locate my heart-rate monitor and swim goggles more quickly than I can find my keys.

13) When I get a weekday off from work, the first thing I think of is "Great! I can make it a long-training day!"


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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

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Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Review: Halo Headband

First, I'd like to share a small victory: You know that Kemah Bridge I somewat dread riding my bike over? Well, last night was my first run over it! And what's more, is that it really wasn't bad. I mean, it was work, but in a strange way it was pretty fun; especially the downside. I managed to keep my average pace, but only because It seemed so much easier to go faster on the downside. It was nice to feel what it was like to run a 10:30 pace for more than a minute. LOL I did 2.88 miles in 39 minutes, for a 13:49 pace with 2 times over the bridge. I had to stop to do a fast walk on the way up both times, for about a minute, but that just gives me something specific to improve upon. Needless to say there was lots of sweat going on, which brings me to this...

One of my co-workers is a big squash/tennis player and we talk athletics frequently. We got to talking about how I like visors with sunprotection AND headband technology, but it's not always easy to find a visor with both. Then she told me about the Halo products.

She she surprised me at work yesterday by purchasing the Halo 1 (tie version) for me, so I could try it. I was a little unsure about it, as I am reminded of the whole 80's "Let's get Physical" look when it comes to headbands, but sweat and sunscreen in my eyes does not feel good -- so anything to prevent it from happening is worthwhile, even if it means I have to get my "Mr. Miagi" on. :)

Essentially, it is a headband that has a thin water-tight seal (that yellow line) on the inside (they call it Sweat Block Technology). The seal channels sweat to the sides of your face, avoiding your eyes, even when it becomes saturated.

The headband is made from what they call a "Dryline Fabric" which evaporates mosture to keep you dry. They say it is lightweight (it is) and it definitely feels like a quality product -- so I don't think repetitive washing would be an issue, but I'll report on that later after a few washings.

The headband also features a "VisaEndurance" fabric, which is fabric embedded by "silver ions" (probably some space-age technology LOL) that is supposed to prevent the growth of bacteria, which ultimately creates the smell. Uh, I'm going to trust that it works without specific testing, though when I tossed it in the laundry room last night, it did not reak like the rest of me! LOL

Bottom Line:
It works. I loved it and I will continue to wear it. Not one drop of sweat in my eyes. Also, even as the headband soaked up the sweat, it didn't feel heavy, like what happens with some other products I've tried. Even soaked with sweat it stayed in place securly and did not release excess sweat into my eyes. It was comfortable, but I did have to adjust it -- I tied it too tight at first, and really doesn't need to be very tight at all.

At $12.95 a pop, if you train multiple days and only do laundry once a week, you'll need more than one.

What I'd like to see?
I'd love to see the Halo headbands offered in other colors, perhaps something more reflective, for outside sports when you are training on the road. It's marathon season here in Houston and every bit of reflective technology you can wear helps you be seen.
Also, very cool:
Halo offers the same technology in several other designs in headbands, visors, hats and skull caps.

Monday, September 07, 2009

- this space for rent -

Can't think of a title today...

Saturday morning was my longest run ever. I have never, in my entire life, run more than 5 miles. My long run was 6 miles! I'm half-way to my half-marathon! My first distance PR :)

I returned to my original 4/1 intervals (I had slid back to 3/2 at the beginning of my training) and pretty much held them up the entire run. There were 2 cycles, somewhere around mile 4 that I walked 2 minutes and ran 4, but outside of that I was just steady with the 4/1. Although it was still work, I felt pretty good. My 6 mile pace was 13:45.

There is always one other woman just a clip ahead of me at our practice runs. I have to admit that I got a little happy when I found myself passing her in the last 1.5 miles. She's always just a smidgen ahead... maybe she was just having a bad day, but regardless I was having a good day.

On Sunday I volunteered at a triathlon out in the Freeport/Lake Jackson area. A few of us met at 3:45 am to head out there to help get things setup. It was a nice venue, and as usual I wondered, "I didn't sign up for this one, why?" LOL

I got a little weepy at the tri when waiting to start the awards they asked us to go outside. This guy Bill, a 70 year old triathlete, had been in treatment for Cancer for the last 8 or 9 months. It took him more than 3 hours to finish the course, but he finished. Everyone went outside to watch him come in and cheer him on. Just seeing him carrying his tired body across that line reminded me of how much I have to be thankful for. He is just amazing.

Also at the tri, I did get to meet one of my Blog readers and her family (who are all tri-ing now!). I was really touched when she said she was doing the tri's because of finding my blog! It made sharing all my Blog BS worth while. Because seriously that's my reason for doing it! I want to let folks know that, if I can do it, anyone can -- you just need to believe you can! Incidently She took 5th in her class and her daughter took 1st in her age group!

Today my running group opt'd to complete our run early morning (instead of our normal evening run), so at 6 am we met to do our 35 minute easy run. I kept a good pace, in spite of the humidty, at 13:12 and completed 2.65 miles. Compared that to my first time out there 2.4 mles at a 14.04 pace back on August 2nd. So I am definitely showing signs of improvement/progress. Great!

Tomorrow is hill training at the Kemah bridge. I've missed the last 3 sessions, which isn't awful since I do bike over it, but I really need to get there to do it! Tomorrow will be the day.

Laundry is calling me; need to be productive today and start "Laboring"

Friday, September 04, 2009

Last Night's Run

Last night's run was supposed to be tempo intervals for 35 minutes. I was actually looking forward to it, even though I was totally fatigued in the afternoon. The weather has been less humid and it is much easier to see your progress. I like progress. :)

After a cat-nap while the Barbie Pegasus movie was on, I left when Daddy got home. The warm-up was fine. I started running and at about the 1/2 mile mark I started getting that rushing in my chest. I hate calling it palpatations, but that's what they are. To me they feel like that anxiety feeling you get when you have a near-miss to what could have been a fatal accident.

Anway, this has happened many times before (once on an open water swim when I was out 300+ yards). I just try to relax and it generally passes. When I'm in the water I just float on my back until it's over. Last night's episode lasted 12 minutes -- the longest episode ever. I stopped for a couple minutes and tried to just walk at a fast pace. I still wasn't coming down and my HR recovery time is pretty short. It seemed I couldn't walk slow enough! I made it back to the area where we regroup and just sat down and cried. I didn't wale, but I was weepy with frustration. There are so many things I want to do and this Thyroid BS plays a part in so much of it, that until we are at least close to regulating it, I can't even begin to think about some of those things.

I know I've read what a long process it is to get regualted, but I did think that 5 months would bring me much closer than it has. I do trust my Doc, so I just have to hang in there.

Anyway, I stayed and stretched and did core. After we were done I was feeling better, so I felt like I had to redeem myself and finished my run. I was absolutely fine. Go figure.

Talk to the Doc: Thyroid Stuff

Okay, so yesterday was another follow-up with my Endo. We're still trying to get my Thyroid stuff regulated. I can't even begin to tell you how frustrating it is.

I know. I read all the books that tell you it's a long drawn-out process, getting the meds right. But seriously... you can only let the fact that you're eating 1200 - 1400 calories a day, trained for 8 triathlons and are currently training for a half marathon and am staying exactly the same weight.

Yeah, it's true. The doctor pointed that out yesterday. Not like I didn't know this already.

So, what we do know is:
.125 of Levoxyl is too much. Makes me "hypERthyroid", but I lose weight! LOL
.100 of Levoxyl is still too much
.88 of Levoxyl is not enough. Palpatations and fatigue reccur routinely.

Alternating days of .100 and .88 doesn't releive the general bloat, fatique or bring back my sex drive (sorry, keepin' it real), though the palpatations are far less (that is until last night when I had a 12 minute episode); usually they're like 2 to 4 minutes. I am still not able to shed pounds -- this part really is freaky, because at some point, shouldn't your body just cave and shed? Also, my periods are totally irregular again. Ugh!

When I walked in to the office I was feeling hopeless. There is no dose between .100 and .88. Dr. B assured me I "have not seen anything yet" and that he has "plenty of tricks" up his sleeve. So on to the blood suckers he sent me and I gave another vile. I go back in 4 weeks. I'm sure between now and the next couple days I'll hear from his office and they'll have a new perscription for me.

I've eliminated the following from my diet:
Broccoli, cabbage and like.
I go organic whenever possible

I've added (in addition to my regular vitamin regime):
Selenium & Magnesium- to support thyroid function
Sunflower Seeds
Iodine (table salt) Iodine is required for hormone conversion

Maybe we'll know some more in 4 weeks. *sigh*


"You do the world no favors by being mediocre."

Jillian Michaels

Friday Fill-ins #140

And...here we go!

1. I feel more positive about having more options managing my thyroid. I was beginning to feel a little hopeless that it was never going to regulated.

2. Sharing time with family and friends is always fun.

3. Right now, I can hear these things: A huge sigh coming from the office next to me, someone hitting the jar of choclates and flip-flops, flipping across the office floor.

4. It's Labor Day weekend and I'm glad to have a 3 day weekend.

5. The last time I ice skated was in my 20's

6. I will fully enjoy (and get caught up on 2 weeks of laundry) this Labor day weekend.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to getting food shopping out of the way then relaxing, tomorrow my plans include a 6 mile run then time well-spent with family and friends and Sunday, I want to make and decorate cookies with Cassie and enjoy the fact I don't have to work on Monday!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Thursday Thirteen in a "Happy" Workplace

13 things to make the workplace, a happier place, according to me, and not some scientific or ivy league school study:

1) If it will improve the overall quality of someone's day, take care on how requests are made. Research shows that women prefer requests in the form of "Could you please..." and men prefer them in the form of "Would you please..."

2) If you ef-up, just own it. Next, learn from it. Not admitting your shortcomings doesn't make you appear like a super-hero... people only perceive you negatively thereafter. Everyone screws up, it's what you do next that counts.

3) Character is what you do when no one is watching. Don't take other people's food from the fridge. I'll share anything I have with anyone. Just let me know if it's the last of something.

4) Tight lipped smiles are not always an indication that someone is not friendly -- sometimes they're just shy and don't speak unless spoken to first.

5) Remember, we're all connected. There is no reason to treat the warehouse guy and the owner of the company differently. Look eachother in the eye and be friendly for crying out loud!

6) For a happier worklife, do what you are passionate about. And if you can't do that, then do whatever it is you do for a freakin' awesome boss that greets you each day with a, heartfelt "good morning" and a smile. Working for a boss, who you know would never let you fail is a plus too.

7) Sometimes, when people get snippy, it's not always about you. Generally it's something in their world making everyone else miserable.

8) Know that no matter what, you have to be flexible. Rules and priorities make no matter -- people always remember when you were an obstacle to their productivity, so be remembered otherwise.

9) A little levity never hurts. Take time to hula hoop, play ping-pong on the conference room table, rollerblade on the first floor, and have lunch together a few times a month. What? Not everyone does that at work?

10) Be reminded of the things that make you happy and pay it forward. If you like it when someone shows you appreciation, do the same for others. It has endless payoffs and in suprirising ways.

11) Breaks are a necessary part of the day. Take a moment to make the most grouchy or stressed person in your workplace to smile.

12) When everything seems to be overwhelming and nothing seems to be going right, just be present and relax. In the big picture the sun will still set in the evening and your family will still love you, in spite of anything that doesn't get done/resolved that day.

13) Completeing a work realated Thursday 13, which at work, was a good reminder of how lucky I am.... even though it doesn't always feel that way.


Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Tri in the Blog-o-sphere :)

Dream in Vertical - Luna Bar All Women's Triathlon Festival 2009
By lizzyt
Also, I was interested in getting into triathlons and thought this would be a good intro because I wouldn't have to deal with the swim – bike transition, which seemed complicated, or struggle to train for swimming, since I technically ...

Images from The Chicago Triathlon - Pace of Chicago
By David Wallach
I wish it was possible for everyone to have a Media Pass and see the Chicago Triathlon the way I was allowed to see it, it was an amazing experience. The conversations of the athletes, the looks on their faces as they swam, biked, ...

(FuzzyCo) - Chicago Triathlon 2009
After months of training, the big day finally arrived and yesterday I participated in the Chicago Triathlon. Actually, let me emphasize, yesterday I finished the Chicago Triathlon. Woo-oo! If you don't mind a little rambling, ...