Happy Halloween!

I was running behind this morning so I didn’t get my Lean Mean Halloween challenge measurements and photos taken, but I’ll get them first thing tomorrow morning.

This weekend was spent helping Chris move into the new house, which entailed several trips between Ben’s place (where he has been living), my apartment (for my sofas and living room tables and a few pieces of spare cookware), a Sears outlet (for a new washer and dryer), my parents’ house (to borrow Dad’s pickup truck), Super Ghetto-Mart (for miscellaneous household necessities like laundry detergent, cleaner, trash cans, etc.), and yes, the actual house.

We spent Saturday afternoon moving non-furniture items, then went to Skip and Becca’s for the Famous Dead People costume party. I had whipped up my Pocahontas dress Friday night for the princely sum of $14.98 for a yard and a half of stretch knit faux suede, but Chris had been so busy with closing on the house and moving that he and former housemate Ben had to make an emergency run to the local Spirit Halloween store for last minute outfits. Chris found a Grim Reaper get up and Ben went with a cavalier outfit.

Check out the photos from the party here: http://maggiewang.com/photos/halloween2005

Me and Chris

Sunday was big furniture moving time. Bed, dresser, sofas, tables, washer, dryer, desk, computer chair–some of which had to be carried down several flights of stairs from my third floor apartment. It wasn’t fun–especially not the Kenmore washer which felt like it weighed a ton–but thanks to all the time I’ve spent lifting heavy things for the purpose of looking good in a tank top, I am not even a bit sore today.

:claphigh:

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Nutrition: Non-Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: SGX Meal
2: 3 oz. Chinese BBQ chicken breast,
3: 2/3 c. low fat cottage cheese, 2/3 c. grapes, 1 T. oats
4: 3 oz. Chinese BBQ chicken breast, 1/3 c. (dry) oatmeal, 1 T. wheat bran, 1 T. raisins
5: BFL banana bread
6: Turkey and soy protein in marinara sauce over 2 oz. WW spaghetti

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter

Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 AM YF Cardio (31 minutes)
8:30 PM YF Flexibility (45 minutes) or NYC Ballet Workout (60 minutes)

===========
The Awful Truth:
1. Stayed under maintenance calories both Saturday and Sunday, but meal timing and macros were off.

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Brownie Points:
1. 24/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Made Pocahontas costume in time for party.
3. Moved sofa, loveseat, coffee table, and end tables out of apartment and into new house.
4. Won $25 Amazon.com gift certificate for showing up at work in costume this morning.
5. Portioned out more oatmeal and PWO shake mix.
6. Cooked more chicken.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
3. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
4. Buy eggs, spinach, other veggies, raisins, almonds, and lean meat/fish.

LL C2W8D3: I sang in front of WHOM?!

So last night was the 38th birthday of the n-Space’s president, Erick Dyke. There was a small birthday party held at his home way out in the wilds of Winter Garden where it is still possible to purchase a few select acres of land and custom build a gorgeous home and horse barn without reporting to a homeowners’ association.

I printed out directions to the house and got on the road around 5:30 pm. One hour and many, many wrong turns later–so many wrong turns that I was starting to fret about my ability to make my way back to civilization on the gas fumes I had left in my tank–I pulled up to the place to see a literal parking lot full of cars out front. Clearly most of the company had decided to attend. 😉

Inside were about 60 people, including most of n-Space, Inc. and a number of family friends and neighbors. As was typical for us n-Spacers, we sort of clustered together in geeky groups, oohing and ahhing over the nifty home theater (plasma screen the size of an entire wall, two rows of reclining leather theater seats with cupholders…:wig:), fighting over the pinball machines, attacking the finger foods, and talking smack over the pool table. I broke my own rules by having a handful of salted cashews (mmmmm…) and a few pieces of sugary-coated gummy candies. I did stay out of the brownies, cake, cookies, and pie, though, and passed on the free flowing wine, beer, and spiked punch.

Then, to my utter chagrin, I was called up to lead the official Happy Birthday singalong before the candles were blown out. Who actually needs a choir leader for “Happy Birthday?” :slappy: I survived that experience (and we didn’t sound so bad considering there were 60 people in there) and with some relief located my co-worker Josh’s real life CSI tech wife, Melissa, and sat down to talk about our respective pets. Alas, my respite was short-lived. By 9 pm I was called upon to get the karaoke going.

If you’ve ever been to a private party that included karaoke, you are probably aware that for the first half hour, NO ONE except the designated sacrificial karaoke goat ever sings. After that, the diehards start coming up and looking at the book, and an hour after THAT, the other people have drunk enough alcohol and heard enough songs that they like to give it a shot themselves.

So, as the evening’s unofficial karaoke kickstarter, I got to stand outside in the screened-in patio trying not to let my teeth chatter as I tried to get through that first half hour of karaoke ice-breaking. I got through Train’s “Drops of Jupiter” (hehe…yes, AGAIN), Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boots Are Made For Walking,” Catherine Zeta-Jones’s “All That Jazz,” and Cher’s “Shoop Shoop Song” before I got another singer lined up. I did collect a trio of back up dancers, though, including a former school board member and a former school principal. :biggrin:

After that the karaoke sort of went on auto-pilot as people rotated in and out of the patio. Erick’s wife Michelle, whom we converted from a shy, “Oh no, I can’t possibly do that!” non-singer to a bona fide mic hog two years ago, was ready to do all of Garth Brooks’s greatest hits, Erick and his buddy from college did three rounds of acapella drinking songs, Ted (my former supervisor and the producer of Geist) pulled out the Neil Diamond, Journey, and Goo Goo Dolls, and their friend Eric from the Gran Cru wine shop tore up some Killers, Pearl Jam, and Stone Temple Pilots.

It wasn’t until I was packing up at almost 1 A.M. that the prez let it be known to the remaining 10 people in the room that the VP of the Walt Disney World resorts and the fellow in charge of all of Downtown Disney had been at the party earlier.

OMG…I played karaoke beeyotch in front of two Disney execs? :shocked:

Somebody just shoot me now.

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Nutrition: Non-Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: SGX Meal
2: SGX Meal
3: SGX Meal
4: SGX Meal
5: 3 oz. mixed beef, tofu, and egg in soy broth with 1/2 c. rice and 1 c. cabbage and tomato broth
6: 3 oz. Beef with snow peas and 1/2 c. rice

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter

Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 AM HIIT Run (5-8.5 mph / 0% incline / 20 minutes)
4:00 PM LISS Walk (4 mph / 20 minutes)

===========
The Awful Truth:
1. Had too much party food Tuesday night, including cocktail nuts from a bowl and a few pieces of gummy candy.
2. Went to bed at 2 am due to late night at party.

===========
Brownie Points:
1. 20/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Cooked more chicken.
3. Did morning run despite wanting to burrow back under the covers.
4. Picked up spinach, eggs, raisins, and almonds.

===========
Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
3. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
4. Make some TVP burger patties and freeze them.
5. Cook veggies.
6. Portion out more oatmeal and PWO shake mix.

LL C2W8D2: Shifty Power Practices

Last month my electricity bill for my little bijou of a single bedroom apartment was a whopping $149.20 for the billing period of 8/15-9/15/05. Progress Energy claimed that I used 1421 kilowatt hours of electricity, and charged me a premium on the kwh and fuel amount over 1000 kwh. I was a bit shocked since my average bill is around $60-$70 though the previous month’s bill had been in the mid-$80s due to some extravagant air conditioner usage on my part. Hey, working out at home requires a chillier room temperature than just puttering around on a computer!

Anyway, I paid the bill and vowed to check up on the meter.

I then promptly forgot to do so.

Now we reach the end of October and I receive an email notice that my Progress Energy bill is once again available online. I head over to PE’s site and see that for the period of 9/16-10/15/05, I owe exactly $0. In fact, I have an account credit of $11.33 according to the latest statement. Taking a closer look, I see that the power company has done a bit of corrective billing this month, overriding the BS statement from last month and updating with the CORRECT amounts.

My actual usage from 8/15-9/14 was just 650 kwh, and usage for 9/15-10/15 was 607 kwh, for a grand total of $137.87 for two months of service.

Those myopic punks at Progress Energy had read the wrong meter AGAIN and overcharged me! The same thing happened to me around January of this year. :mad2:

I suppose I should be glad that they discovered the error this month and that it was in my favor (sucks to be the folks who got undercharged last month and are paying double in October, bwahahahaha!), but GAH!!! I hate this kind of incompetence. I’m fortunate that I am not living paycheck to paycheck and that I have enough financial padding to cover this sort of temporary billing error, but crummy recording and accounting practices like these could really mess up the budgets of less fortunate people.

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Nutrition: Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: PWO Dextrose/whey/Creastack shake
2: SGX PWO Meal
3: 3 oz. BBQ chicken, 1 c. mixed veggies, 1 apple
4: SGX Meal
5: SGX Meal
6: Free meal (hors d’oeuvres at company party)

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter

Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 AM Legs/Glutes (40 minutes)
7:40 PM YF Lower body workout (30 minutes)

===========
The Awful Truth:
1. Nothing!

===========
Brownie Points:
1. 20/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Folded laundry.
3. Got 6.5 hours of sleep.

===========
Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
3. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
4. Make some TVP burger patties and freeze them.
5. Pick up spinach, eggs, raisins, and almonds.

LL C2W8D1: You are my fire…

Things are going to be a bit spotty today due to the hurricane, but here’s a little something my sister sent me to cheer you all up until I have more edifying stuff to share. Don’t forget to turn on your speakers! :whistle:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6739710473912337648&q=chinese

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Nutrition: Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: 3×1 spinach omelette, 1/3 c. (dry) oatmeal, 1 T. wheat bran, 1 t. brown sugar
2: SGX Meal
3: 3 oz. BBQ chicken, 1 c. mixed veggies, 1 apple
4: SGX Meal
5: PWO Dextrose/whey/Creastack shake
6: SGX PWO Meal

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter

Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 PM Back/Biceps/Abs (40 minutes)
7:40 PM YF workout (30 minutes)

===========
The Awful Truth:
1. Went to bed at 2 a.m. after driving back from the other side of town.

===========
Brownie Points:
1. 19/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Defrosted chicken.
3. Made floor plan for new townhouse.
4. Picked up extra cat carrier and litter box.

===========
Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
3. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
4. Make some TVP burger patties and freeze them.

LL C2W7D5: Maya is a Meanie

I’m on workout 26 of Yourself Fitness now, and yeesh! I have had my ass kicked by Miss Virtual Trainer for the past two days.

It started yesterday when I decided to do a 60 minute cardio emphasis workout instead of the suggested 30 minute flexibility session. I paused the workout after the warm up period briefly to flip my omelette over (What can I say? I multitask my home workouts and breakfast!) and accidentally hit the “Increase difficulty” option on the Pause menu before I returned to the workout.

When you tell Yourself Fitness to increase difficulty on a cardio workout, you get introduced to the joys of Double Jumping Jacks, Frog Leaps and (argh!) Cross Country Skiers. CCS’s were my least favorite calisthenic exercise in the Army, and guess what? They are STILL my least favorite calisthenic exercise!

My happy YF cardio session–which was already pretty challenging–suddenly started to feel like P90X Plyometrics. :eekb: And I was stuck with a full 69 minutes of said torture.

I survived the workout and thanked the stars that the next day would be upper body.

Enter the SLOW narrow arm push-up on upper body day. :eekb::eekb::eekb::eekb::eekb:

Don’t let the pastel Lycra outfit and placid smile fool you–Maya is a drill sergeant in disguise!

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Nutrition: Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: Banana raisin bread
2: 3×1 spinach omelette, 1/3 c. (dry) oatmeal, 1 T. wheat bran, 1 t. brown sugar
3: Banana raisin bread
4: Hawaiian chicken pita pizza
5: SGX Meal
6: SGX Meal

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter

Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 AM YF Upper Body (30 minutes)
7:30 AM Chest/Shoulders/Triceps

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The Awful Truth:
1. Nothing!

===========
Brownie Points:
1. 17/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Baked banana bread.
3. Cooked green beans.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
3. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
4. Make some TVP burger patties and freeze them.
5. Pick up extra cat carrier and litter box.
6. Recharge extra batteries.

LL C2W7D3: Assassinations and Transformations

A few weeks ago I checked out the audio book version of Gavin De Becker’s “Gift of Fear” from the library to while away some of the boring driving time between my apartment and the homes of my parents and my boyfriend who live 35 minutes away across town. I reached the chapter on assassins today and was struck by something De Becker wrote regarding the number one pre-incident indicator of a successful assassination.

He called it “ability belief.”

To summarize, successful assassins have the absolute belief that they have the ability to successfully achieve their goals. They are aware of the security measures surrounding their targets and of the factors that are working against their success, but they are confident that they have the skills and abilities needed to overcome these obstacles. What others consider unthinkable and impossible, these individuals view as completely doable with the right preparation.

Funny, isn’t it?

Successful physique transformationists have the same trait of ability belief.

Regardless of where they are starting out–100+ pounds overweight, 25 lbs underweight and scrawny, or at the correct weight but flabby and afraid to appear on a public beach in a swimsuit–when they make the decision to change, they know they will become the lean, fit “After” photo in their minds.

While others around them are saying,

“There’s no way I can ever be that fit because my genetics are against me, my job is too hectic, my family takes up all of my time, and I don’t know what I’m doing in the gym and the kitchen. I cannot succeed, therefore I shall not bother to try,”

the successful transformationist is saying,

“I am a fit person just waiting to come out of my cocoon. I will become the best version of myself given my genetic gifts, I can make time before work to fit in my workouts, I will engage my family in my efforts, and I will make the effort to gather knowledge and seek the advice of those who have succeeded before me. There are no valid excuses for not succeeding, just minor obstacles that I can work around with proper planning.”

So the next time you feel yourself faltering in your path to fitness, ask yourself if it’s really a matter of a lack of willpower, thyroid issues, a faulty nutrition or workout plan, or merely a lack of faith in your own ability to succeed that is holding you back.

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Nutrition: Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: 3×1 spinach omelette, 1/3 c. (dry) oatmeal, 1 T. wheat bran, 1 t. brown sugar
2: 2 slices protein brownies
3: Hawaiian chicken oat bran pita pizza
4: 1/2 portion steak and shrimp noodles, 1 slice protein brownie
5: SGX Meal
6: SGX Meal

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter

Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 AM HIIT Run (4.5-9 mph / 0% incline / 20 minutes)
7:30 AM LISS Incline Walk (3.5-4.0 mph / 10% incline / 30 minutes)
9:00 PM YF (30 minutes)

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The Awful Truth:
1. Not enough sleep again, dang it. 😕

===========
Brownie Points:
1. 14/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Organized desk.
3. Filed away all new paperwork.
4. Defrosted and grilled more chicken breast and legs.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
3. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
4. Make some TVP burger patties and freeze them.

Pepper-Crusted Eye of Round with Raspberry Cabernet Glaze

This is one of my favorite recipes from Stella’s Kitchen (p. 40). It’s surprisingly easy to make, looks all kinds of fancy-schmancy on your plate (or in your single serving Rubbermaid as the case may be) with a pretty pile of steamed broccoli and sweet potato wedges, and tastes pretty faboo for a healthy protein portion. 🙂

Pepper-Crusted Eye of Round with Raspberry Cabernet Glaze
4 Servings

181 calories, 9.2 g carb, 26.6 g protein, 4.7 g fat, 1 g fiber

Ingredients:
1 lb. eye of round steak
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground pepper (ground coarsely)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 c. reduced-sodium beef broth
1/2 c. Cabernet Sauvignon wine
3 tablespoons sugar-free or low-sugar raspberry preserves
1/2 c. fresh or frozen raspberries, chopped roughly (optional)

Directions:
Combine pepper and salt and spread evenly on a dinner plate or other flat, clean surface. Rub sides of steaks with olive oil and press both sides onto plate to pepper-crust steaks. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Cook steaks to desired temperature and remove from pan. Turn heat to high and add wine, broth and preserves to pan. Bring to boil and add fresh raspberries. Allow sauce to reduce by half, then drizzle over steaks.

Modifications:

If the raspberries are not used, a teaspoon of brown sugar may be added to the glaze to improve its texture.

LL C2W7D2: The Joy of Florida Living

I was thinking about signing up for the U Can Finish 2 mile race at my old school, the University of Central Florida (aka UCF, aka “U Can’t Finish”), this Sunday, but then I overheard some co-workers using words like “Storm of the Century” and “Category 5.”

I went over to Weather.com to confirm, and sure enough, something wicked this way comes on the 23rd.

Wilma Path Oct 19, 2005

I hope I don’t lose power. My backup workout plan was a 60 minute Yourself Fitness session or a round of Yoga X, and both require electricity. My fridge is also stuffed to the gills with fruit, veggies, chicken, and other healthy perishables thanks to my overenthusiastic grocery sale shopping these past two weeks.

Sigh.

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Nutrition: Training Day Menu
(SGX nutrition details omitted by request of trainer)

1: 1 slice carrot-raisin bread, 3×1 spinach omelette
2: Hawaiian chicken oat bran pita pizza
3: PWO dextrose/whey/Creastack shake
4: Hawaiian chicken oat bran pita pizza
5: SGX Meal
6: SGX Meal

Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D, 1 T. flaxseed oil or natural peanut butter
Water: 16 cups minimum

===========
Workout:
7:00 AM YF lower body (40 minutes)
12:00 PM Legs/Glutes (45 minutes)

===========
The Awful Truth:
1. Not enough sleep! 🙁

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Brownie Points:
1. 13/31 Perfect LMH Challenge Days
2. Had a great upper body workout yesterday. DOMS is back in a big way.
3. Made some pita pizzas and froze them.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Update HandBase workout module.
2. Organize desk.
3. Read a few chapters from NASM book.
4. Choose pattern and sew Halloween costume.
5. Defrost and grill more chicken breast and legs.
6. Make some TVP burger patties and freeze them.
7. File new papers.