This week has been a whirlwind for me. I didn’t post for the previous week…we went out of town for my birthday and didn’t come back until Monday. Once we got to Tuesday, my life has just been going at 90 mph. And when I stepped on the scale Tuesday morning to assess the damage, it was not a pretty sight. I drank alcohol on Thursday, Friday and Sunday through the weekend (it was my birthday, after all) and it really took its toll.
The real story is the horrible luck I’ve had with food. We went to Romano’s Macaroni Grill on Ramstein for my “birthday” dinner. I had their Cello Cosmo, made with vodka, cranberry juice and limoncello. It turns out that was the very best thing I had there. Our service was terrible. My food was very disappointing…I had the seafood pasta. My shrimp was hard and rubbery, the scallops were grossly undercooked and the mussels were barely even there. The best part of my plate was actually the pasta itself. At least it was perfectly cooked. But the whole dish was bland and boring. And the seafood was inedible. So, I ordered a second drink. Yay. Happy freakin’ birthday. My son kept trying to tell our horrible waiter that it was my birthday, but he was barely present and never even noticed (even after I wrote it on the paper covering our table.) So much for service.
And that was only the beginning. I really wanted to go to the brand new Frijole’s restaurant on Vogelweh. But when we tried to go, it wasn’t open. And we also found that the Chili’s restaurant is “closed until further notice.” Who knows what that means. So, we were denied once again.
We have had terrible food/service the last few times we’ve eaten at restaurants on Ramstein. The best food we ate was what I cooked in our hotel room which was equipped with a full kitchen. Next time we decide to go and stay for a night or two, we’ll be taking more food for me to prepare instead of spending money on crappy food and service. We definitely will be thinking twice before hitting up the American restaurants on the base again.
But I digress….the thing is, even though I had an awesome hour-long workout before we left, I over-indulged and came home carrying a couple of pounds extra. Mostly it was water retention, but still…
So, this past week I knew I had to work extra hard to get back on track. And I made a great discovery: exercise and a smart diet are the keys to success. I know what you’re thinking…but everyone already knows that! That’s no secret!! And you are absolutely right. It is definitely not a secret. But I feel that everyone knows this without actually knowing it.
I was trolling through my facebook wall early this last week and came across a post from sparkpeople.com. (If you haven’t used this site, I highly recommend it. Lots of fabulous tools to help you on your journey!) I read the blog and was instantly inspired…the answer has been right in front of me all along. I had an epiphany!
My diet is probably better than most and has been for quite a long time. Sure I have my momentary bouts of splurge, but at least 80% of the time, I make smart choices. My biggest vice is wine and alcohol. If I indulge, that’s usually where I do it. But what makes the biggest difference isn’t giving up something here or avoiding that over there…it’s the amount of exercise I put in. I can cut back on a lot of things, but if I don’t exercise I won’t see much in the way of results. It’s all about activity. How many calories am I really burning each day?
That very same day I got up from the computer and started a workout. I was so inspired I worked out for an hour and a half. The whole rest of the day I felt really good, mentally and physically. And you may laugh when I say this next part, but I felt “skinnier!” I find that on the days when I work out I feel “skinny” throughout the day. If I workout out 5-6 days a week, and not just quick little 20 min. sessions – I’m talking about giving it a good 45 min. at least, I can still feel skinny on my off days. It’s been liberating and inspiring to feel as good as I’ve felt this past week. I logged in 4 total hours of high-intensity exercise and I feel awesome!
One other thing that I realized after reading that blog post was that the scale can be your friend or your worst enemy. If you are exercising and building muscle, the scale will lie right to your face! You may put on pounds while you are shedding fat. And the scale will not tell you that. The way to tell is through photographic evidence. Seeing the author’s pictures of before and after and her realization that the difference in pounds is minimal was eye-opening. The scale has the ability to discourage the most devout by telling them their efforts are pointless. When in actuality, they are undergoing a transformation so subtle that it’s hard to see without pictorial evidence. Don’t listen to the scale!
So, inspired by this girl’s photographic transformation, I have vowed to log my pics in order to track my progress more acurately. Here are my first two…
I’m really not excited about seeing myself like this, but I’m eager to see the changes in pictures. So, I will keep doing what I’ve been doing this week and keep track with pics each week.
As far as the Diet Solution Program goes, well I have to say I haven’t been sticking to it. I have a hard time with diets that are so restrictive. I can’t keep all the food in the fridge and I don’t have time to prepare everything. I’ve just had a hard time with my busy, busy lifestyle. I’m not spending all my time in the kitchen. I’m just keeping my food choices smart, eating plenty of fruit and veggies, steering clear of sugar and wine, and watching my portion sizes. We don’t eat out much here…not a lot of options that aren’t disastrous (ie. Burger King, Anthony’s Pizza, Taco Bell, etc.) so we keep it at home.
The bottom line is if you are smart about your diet and you exercise and push yourself to build a stronger, healthier body, it doesn’t matter which program you follow. Be smart. Be strong. Be healthy. Be happy.
To a healthier, happier and longer life.