Hello, Weekend!

Hello, Weekend!

Thought I would pop in and say hi! Things have been going great, yesterday marked 50 days vegan! Woot! The weight has been coming off naturally now, I no longer have to give my eating a full focus since I pretty clean and I would say 90% is whole foods. I’ve lost close to 8 lbs since going vegan, which doesn’t sound like a lot but after losing 90+ lbs already, things slowed down so as long as it is going down I don’t care how slow it goes lol!

Dinner last night was Nekter Juice Bar, I grabbed a smoothie bowl and it was simply amazing!!

I’m still not running, but I did get an exercise bike from my grandpa, he wasn’t using it and it was practically brand new! I haven’t been on it as much as I planned but I need to set some goals to get on this bike and at least get 30 minutes in each day, at least through the weekday.

I have to say though, I’m really not stressing out about getting exercise in and such, summer is hard enough with the kiddo home so I will get in what I can and just focus on healthy eating. I’m looking forward to going back to the gym in August though, I do miss it lol! Lifting at home is not working, I had a feeling it wouldn’t too. I just can’t get motivated to do weights at home vs. at the gym. When I’m at the gym, I’m there to work out and that is all… no distractions, no excuses, just get in the work and leave. At home, it’s too easy to fall into the “I’ll do it later”…. “coffee first”… “I don’t feel like getting dressed for working out”…etc. So instead of force it, I’m just going to enjoy the summer!

My birthday was on Wednesday, I turned 34! I still don’t feel like I’m in my 30’s, never got the whole “adulting” thing down haha!! Bob bought me flowers and I used some birthday money on some new tarot decks and books.

Some Updates!

Some Updates!

Howdy! Things have been going excellent in my little world! Thought I would update the blog this morning on what I have been doing. Today marks 40 days since going vegan (will be 6 weeks on Thursday) and I haven’t felt better!

Last week I lost 3.4 lbs without even focusing or trying, just eating good food and enjoying. It’s been liberating, to not log food or focus on calories. I was never a calorie counter, but I did keep a close eye on my caloric intake through my health journey and would hoover at the 1,300 calorie mark (my splurge days were around 1,500). I mentioned before that I did log my foods the first week when I switched to vegan, not for calorie watching but I wanted to watch my nutrients (protein, calcium, iron, etc) and be sure I was hitting those goals, also what foods helped what, etc. I recommend anyone doing this when you switch to vegan!

I may do a little post on Jess Uprooted about tips and such on how to switch to a vegan lifestyle for anyone interested! I would love to share what I have learned, what worked for me, etc.

A little weight loss update! Since I switched to vegan, I have lost 6.4 lbs. Weight loss isn’t as fast as it used be now that I’ve lost 95 lbs and I’m ok with that! This morning I am only 5 lbs away from reaching the 100 lbs lost mark again, finally!

What I find interesting, is that last year around this time I was also trying to reach 100 lbs lost and I remember hoping to reach it before my birthday on the 21st, but I didn’t end up reaching this goal until July. I have a feeling I will reach 100 lbs lost in June this time, but time will tell… Aunt Flo is right around the corner and she tends to unpack quite a heavy suitcase (meaning, I usually gain 3-6 lbs that week) lol!

Also, I stopped running after June 21st last year and picked it back up in the late fall… Currently, I haven’t really ran in over a month, I did do a .34 mile run a couple weeks ago but I’m not really counting that. I’m repeating these patterns again just like last year, but there is a new key player in this right now… it’s my relationship with food, which has changed drastically for the better. I’m still losing weight despite not running. Last year when I stopped running, I also stopped eating healthy and the pounds started adding back on (around 23 lbs in total). So, while I’m not running right now, I’m still losing weight! Glad history isn’t repeating itself entirely lol! I feel like my new found relationship with food and my new lifestyle with veganism will only help me this time around.

Running has been on my mind all weekend! I want to run, I just hate running on the treadmill. I didn’t mind it when I had a choice to run on the treadmill or outside, then I didn’t mind jumping on it. But now that I have no choice but to run on it… I don’t want to. Funny how that happens! We are hitting 113º by the end of the week and I just can’t do outside running, no matter how early I go out (which is hard anyways since my daughter is home for the summer on break). I’ve learned that 50-60º is my comfort zone outside when running, 70º is ok, but anything over 80º and I start having breathing issues with wheezing and a tight chest.

I have several virtual runs to do but I’m not worried about them, I will do them each when I get back into running. They will be there on my shelf in the packages until then. But I do want to do one on July 1st, it’s the Rise Up 5k that I signed up for. It’s a live event that is going on in 300 cities and also had a virtual option. I want to run the same day everyone else is, so I will be doing this virtual run that day… I don’t care if I have to walk it all, it will get done on my treadmill since the cause means so much to me. You can read about it here – you can use my code 22129 to get 10% off too!

Morning (mini) run!

Morning (mini) run!

This morning I bit the bullet and got dressed… for a run *gasp*!?! I had my heart set to do just 1 mile, something short to get back into it after a month off running, but my room electrical breaker had other plans. Not even a 1/2 mile into my run, I blew the breaker lol! It’s ok though, I didn’t finish my run but I will call this a successful one because I felt fantastic. It didn’t feel like I took a month off, feels more like I didn’t run in a day or two. Last time I took time off (even just a week or two), I felt like crap… legs were like bricks, I was sweating a ton, and I just hated every second of it… it felt like I took a year off running.

But this time I felt refreshed and great, I happily blame this on veganism! This was my first “run” after going vegan and I’m looking forward to getting back on the treadmill tomorrow… for a full run lol!

I did take my time on this (mini) run and stuck with a 60:45 run/walk ratio. I’m about a minute slower in pace on the treadmill which will be a mental game this summer as I will be on it all summer until fall (end of October-ish). But my goal is to just run and enjoy it this summer, not worry about pace. Hoping after a summer of treadmill running will help me when I hit the pavement again in the fall. Will be an interesting test! I also have a pile of virtual run medals to earn this summer, so I have lots of motivation!

After my mini run, I did some weight training for upper body… haven’t done that in three weeks or so, I’m sure I’ll feel it in the morning but I didn’t do a long session at all. Just lifted while waiting for the internet to reset after I flipped the breaker switch lol!

What’s New?!

What’s New?!

Ok, just saw that it’s been awhile since I’ve updated the blog! Oop’s! So what has been going on? Let’s see… I’m still eating 100% vegan, just passed my first full week (on day 9 today) and feeling awesome!! I did a weekly update post on my other blog all about what has happened in the first week here.

As some of you know, I joined in on a Dietbet that my friend was hosting on the 1st and I wanted to update how I was doing! The goal is to lose 4% of my Dietbet starting weight by the end of the month, which was 9.3 lbs. Since the 1st I have lost 5.4 lbs… 4.2 of those lbs were since the 4th when I went vegan! I have 3.9 lbs left to lose on this Dietbet and I’m starting to see that I may just reach that goal! I was bouncing back and forth for a few months and since changing my eating the weight is now dripping off me.

I have been eating mainly whole food plant-based (WFPB) and feel fantastic! Other than that, I did both weight training sessions this week and have only two more weeks of the gym until summer break starts and I will be using the home gym so I’m trying to work my butt off in these last few weeks lol!

I’ll admit, I don’t think I will be updating this blog as often once summer starts unless I get my running mojo back. After my knee became sore several weeks ago, I fell off track with running despite my knee feeling better. I know my running mojo will return so I’m not worried at all or forcing it, just focusing on weight training, bike riding (which I’ve been slacking on), and my eating. Last year when I fell off the running wagon I fell off with my eating too and gained those 20+ lbs, so when I did get back to running… it was rough! This time I am not falling off track with eating thanks to eating vegan! I stopped tracking calories about 2 days into this vegan adventure and eat a ton, the weight is still dropping off daily… I know I will plateau eventually though like with any weight loss.

I will, however, be updating my vegan adventure blog (Jess Uprooted) a lot this summer. I’m treating it more like a journal so I’ve been posting everything from grocery stores hauls, food reviews, what I’m eating, etc. I may eventually combine both blogs but for now I’m keeping them separate. Again, you can follow that blog over at www.jessuprooted.blogspot.com! I do have a handful of virtual runs to do this summer, I purposely saved these so I have some focus when I get my running mojo back…. I can feel my mojo slowly returning though!

Pure Joy and Happiness

Pure Joy and Happiness

First off, I feel so bad that I haven’t been updating the blog as much as I normally do lol! I haven’t been running this week or biking, my knee’s have been iffy so I’m trying to take it easy on them. I saw my last post was on the 3rd and some things have changed since that post! As of May 4th, I have gone full vegan with my eating (today marks 3 days) and I feel better than I ever have. I’ve been lactose-intolerant for over 20 years but never got off dairy, since getting off dairy fully now I have had zero issues with my stomach, bloating, or daily cramping!! Why I didn’t do this sooner, who knows. I have always been a massive cheese and sour cream lover, so I never thought in a million billion years I could get off it.

Since I lost my password and sign on for the small side blog I was doing on my vegetarian (now vegan) adventures, I did set up a new one through Blogspot. If you are interested, you can check it out here – Jess Uprooted.

This week I may not have ran (except Monday) but I did get both my weight training sessions in on Tuesday and Thursday! Kicked some major butt! I mentioned that I joined in on a DietBet that a friend is hosting and when I signed up I thought for sure this would be really hard to lose 4% in 30 days… I am now feeling very confident in this challenge! I am down 3.6 lbs since May 1st and 2.5 lbs of that was lost after I switched to vegan on the 4th! It’s literally melting off me! Not only am I eating cruelty free, but I’m helping the environment (which is very dear to me), losing weight, and eating a ton more. What a great combo lol! I have never eaten so many calories in my life while still losing weight. I used to average about 1,300-1,500 a day… right now I average about 1,700-1,900 calories a day. I’m eating a lot more so I meet my daily nutrient goals, I have been eating very clean and a lot of raw foods.

7 Days Vegetarian

7 Days Vegetarian

First off, I’m a dork… I started my other small blog on my vegetarian adventures, then reset my MacBook yesterday and have no idea what email or password I set up for it. So, I won’t be updating that blog now lol! I have tried everything and nothing works, so I’m taking that as a sign to keep it all on this blog. After all, this adventure is health related so it fits here on the blog.

My foods have been awesome this past week! I’m on day 7 of vegetarian, which has swayed now to more vegan… I would say full time vegetarian – part time vegan right now. After today I can officially say I have been at this a full week! I can’t remember what I said on this blog or the other, but I decided to start transitioning more towards vegan and use the rest of this year to transition if all goes well. I tried in the past to go vegan and failed due to lack of knowledge on preparation… I have also tried to go vegetarian in the past and failed after a day or two, again due to lack of knowledge and preparation. This time, it has been insanely easy for me. Maybe I’m just ready? Who knows, all I know is that I am loving it! While I am still eating dairy, I have been limiting it a lot and have already switched my coffee creamer to an almond vegan creamer that I love (Califia Farms Pecan Caramel almond creamer – but want to try the vanilla next) and found a ranch that I like (Daiya Ranch). So those two switches were easy after I found a substitute. Cheese is next to find! I heard Chao and Miyoko have great ones, so I’ll be trying those soon.

Two things I have learned so far
Food is fuel – I’m understanding that choosing what to eat based on nutrients is key
Live in the moment – There is no use worrying about what I will eat down the road at a restaurant or something. Focusing on what I have now has helped me focus on the now and not the past or future.

My approach right now is to slowly switch over to 100% vegan (food) and replace non-vegan items in the kitchen as we run out, no use wasting what we already have. Once I get the food part down and am eating vegan fully, I will start working on other aspects like household products, makeup, etc. I’m trying to really make this an easy switch and not one that will overwhelm me.

I’m a massive picky eater so trying new foods is like giving me a spoon of poison, I freak out, no lie. The past few days I have actually opened up to trying more foods starting to look forward to it! I’ve always had this irrational food fear of Larabar’s since they contain dates… I’ve never had dates, so naturally as a picky eater I feared them and swore they were gross before ever trying one… well, I had a Larabar today and what do you know, I LOVED it! (It was the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, so good, I have others in the pantry to try too)

Tonight I am cooking for once, Bob usually does the booking, and I found a stir fry “mix and match” recipe so I’m making a sweet & sour sauce with sugar snap peas, broccoli, carrots, onion, green onion, and garlic over basmati rice topped with cashews. I was going to pick up the Beyond Meat grilled “chicken” to add to it but I’m not ready to try faux meats yet lol! Baby steps!

Another thing, I’m down 1.2 lbs! Woot!

I have been reading two books and a million websites for info! The books I’m currently reading are Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer and The 30-Day Vegan Challenge by Colleen Patrick-Goudrea. Both books are fantastic so far, I’m halfway done with Eating Animals and just started the other. I’m looking forward to adding more cookbooks to my collection and other vegan books full of info!

A few people have asked me if I’m finding it hard to get protein in and at first I was nervous about that part but now I’m not worried at all. But, I am still eating greek yogurt in the morning so once I find ways to add in more protein I will be swapping that to almond milk (which I just bought, Califia Farms… what can I say, I’m a sucker for this brand and their packaging lol). But right now, I’m not worried at all. I’m currently taking a supplement for B12 and iron, but I was taking that before I started this whole transition. I do want to get blood work done before I get too far into this change so I can compare later on!

Anyways, I just wanted to do a quick update on the blog here about what I’m doing! Feel free to ask me any questions, I’m an open book!

Running Again!

Running Again!

It’s been nearly two weeks since I ran last and I finally got on the treadmill this morning! I changed my wake up alarm to 4:30 for this week (and the month) so I could get in a run or walk before I take a shower and start my day. It worked out perfectly! I got up, had my coffee and then hopped on the treadmill at 5:15 for 30 minutes. I had about 15 minutes to cool down after my run before taking a shower… I hate jumping in the shower directly after sweating, I always feel so humid after I shower no matter what lol

I took it slow with a 60:90 sec run/walk and it felt great. I’m trying not to focus on my pace since I’m about a minute slower on the treadmill vs. on the pavement. So my focus with running right now is just to run and enjoy every second of it.

After I got home I took my bike out for an 11 mile ride. I was very hesitant on taking my bike out since nearly getting hit by a car last week and almost took my bike to a local park to ride, but I decided that I needed to face my fear and go back out on my canal trail. I took my time at the crosswalks and also didn’t go out till after 9am, I noticed the roads were way less busy so I plan to go out at this time for now on. I was going out before 9am and I think I was hitting a lot of the crazy “off to work” traffic.

I ran by the store and picked up a few snacks! I also grabbed Daiya ranch dressing to try and Vital Gluten to try making seitan this weekend with my husband. I started a small little blog for writing about my adventures in vegetarianism, if you are interested it’s called Jess Uprooted. I’m not sure how often I’ll update it so we’ll see! I’m a blog-a -holic so creating another blog was a no brainer lol!

Goodbye April!

Goodbye April!

Happy Sunday! Spent some time in the backyard with Bob working on the garden, we finally planted the Goji berry in the ground in the perfect spot (up on our mini hill). I’m now relaxing and thinking about the new week ahead! Not sure if I mentioned or not, but I joined in on my friends DietBet that is starting on Monday and I think this motivation is just what I needed. I’m excited for May, I have a weight goal to work for with this bet. My 4% goal is to lose 9.3 lbs, eep! I haven’t lost 9-10 lbs in one month in ages so this will be interesting lol!

I’m on day 4 of vegetarian and going strong, I feel fantastic and loving this change! Last time I tried go vegetarian I quit after like day 2, and I noticed on day 2 recently I had the urge to throw in the towel but I didn’t… I caught myself in the same mindset “maybe I should just switch to vegan right now” and that led to panic on what I’ll eat right now, and worry about what to eat the next day… so I stopped myself right there before I got overwhelmed. I’m keeping my focus on vegetarian (lacto – so no meat but I am keeping dairy right now). I don’t like eggs, so that is an easy thing to cut out but I’m not focusing on cutting things out that have eggs in them right now, I will cut that out down the road. Keeping my mindset on just cutting out meat is getting rid of the overwhelming feeling that I got. I’ve learned that baby steps are key for me and have proved so when I cut out soda several years ago, then red meat, the pork, etc. So little by little it sticks better, some can switch overnight and I applaud them big time, I wish I could do that!

I think I’m going to stop talking vegetarian on each post though and either post a weekly review on the blog or move my vegetarian adventures on to a smaller blog and just link it here once in a while. Not sure yet!

Back to the DietBet! I did my initial weigh in and pictures yesterday, not the most flattering either since I didn’t do my hair yet or anything lol! My plan of attack for May… or my goals, I should say are:

✖︎ Get back to running – aiming for 3 days a week with just 30-45 min
✖︎ Walk 30 min per day (unless it’s a run day)
✖︎ Weight Training – stick to my two days a week 
✖︎ Biking – 3-5 days per week with 10-15 mile rides
✖︎ Focus on food – sticking with vegetarian

I’m excited to see what switching to vegetarian does for the month of May, I’m trying not to snack on junk and make sure it’s nutrient dense. I don’t want to just live off potatoes and pasta, so I’m currently trying new-to-me foods… yesterday I tried sweet peppers and sugar snap peas (raw) and loved them! Texture if my biggest issue with being a picky eater so I’m determined to beat this picky eating, it’s exhausting to be a picky eater. I want more variety and more plant based protein options, so beans are next on my list to try (I’ve never had beans before, not even refried).

Ready for a new week and new month! Let’s do this!

Is it Friday yet?

Is it Friday yet?

I had no idea that I didn’t post much this week on the blog! It’s been a long week for sure and I’m ready for the weekend to get here already. I’ll admit, I skipped the gym this week and said I was working on “self care” but in reality that meant that I was having massive “body image issues”. My face has broken out due to Aunt Flo knocking yesterday and I felt like a hippo in a wetsuit so I decided to take this week off and rest fully…. like really, rest my body, muscles, and mind. I have to say, I was feeling really guilty this morning after I skipped the gym but writing this now… I don’t feel guilty at all. I feel ready for a fresh perspective next week and I’m actually looking forward to it.

This week had zero running, barely any walks, and not as much bike rides… but that’s ok! This morning was actually a rough ride on my bike as I nearly got hit by some idiot who ran a red. Long story short, he ran the red when I was halfway across the crosswalk (I had the right away with the crosswalk light)… he decided to stop after the crosswalk but not run the red completely. He was still for a while and I had to get out of the street so I decided to ride to the other side but when I get behind him, he gunned it in reverse! I managed to get out of the way since I was already on high alert… but the worst wasn’t even that, the worst was hearing a woman in another car yell “He’s going to hit her!”… most would assume that was yelled out in fear of seeing someone get hit by a car… no, not this woman. She then burst out in laughter and started clapping her hands while throwing her head back in what looked like enjoyment. That was the worst part. I left my faith in humanity on the curb and rode home shaking, cut my 10 mile ride short (did 8 miles). I don’t understand what enjoyment people have seeing others almost get injured or worse, get injured! I’ll never understand.

Anyways, I’m fine and I’ll ride again but I think I’ll be going elsewhere to ride… even though I ride on a paved canal trail meant for bikes, runners, and such.

After the incident, I actually had a great day! My new glasses arrived so I went to pick them up, yay! My others were very old and falling apart pretty bad, the right lens was so scratched and scuffed that it felt like I was looking through dirty windows all the time.

Since it’s a long post, I’ll go to note that I am attempting the vegetarian transition once again, today is day one and it went great! I’m trying not to stress about it or think too hard this time around, I tend to put way too much pressure on myself every time I attempt to drop meat (which is only chicken/turkey now). So if I mess up, it’s ok, just need to keep going and keep making a conscious effort. Here were most of my foods from today, minus dinner… phone is dead so I didn’t snap a pic but I had a huge salad with corn on the cob. I noticed one big change today, I ate more fruit and veggies than I normally do and that’s a good thing! I’m trying to be creative with getting more protein in so I don’t have to worry about it much so like today I used 3 tbsp of hemp hearts in my morning smoothie, on top of the peanut butter and 4 oz of greek yogurt (I’m not cutting out dairy right now) – that gave my smoothie 28g of protein right there. I am picking up nuts and such tomorrow for snacks here and there.

I told myself that if I really want to switch to this lifestyle that I really need to open up more and try new things. I’m a massive picky eater and I have a massive texture issue with foods to top it off. I don’t like squishy wet foods like tomato’s, I prefer foods to have more of a crunch or “bite” to them, hard to explain. Faux meats gross me out for some reason but I am willing to try tofu (if it’s thin and “crispy”) and seitan (I heard it’s better than tempeh… which grosses me out anyways). I was going to start a new blog just to journal about my adventures in vegetarian but I may just do a weekly recap on the blog here instead, we’ll see!

Happy Monday!

Happy Monday!

Happy Monday! Today has been going great! I started today with a PB & J smoothie with hemp hearts and have stuck with my eating, just finished lunch. I really need to focus on my eating, big time! Let’s be honest… my food focus has been horrible the past few weeks month. Getting in activity has been super easy despite not running much lately, I’ve been on my bike daily. My right knee is still a little eh, going to rest one more day today and go for a 30 min run tomorrow morning to see how it feels. There is a chance I may have to sit out Sunday’s race… really don’t want to, so we’ll see!

One thing I did this weekend that I never thought I would do was join a DietBet! It’s for May and my friend Tamara is hosting it so I figured… why not?! I need something to help motivate me to get back on track, maybe money will do it, who knows! I’m a little nervous about it, won’t lie lol! The goal is to lose 4% of your starting weight in 4 weeks, seems easy enough but that will be around 9 lbs lol! I used to lose 10-12 lbs per month in the beginning, but after losing over 90 lbs it has slowed down a lot so I will do my best and work my butt off, then see what happens! I really don’t want to focus on weight loss right now but I need focus on my eating so that is a bonus to eating better… weight loss.

This morning I got in a 12 mile bike ride, had a great time! There was some wind heading south that was felt… oh, was it felt! Looking at my heart rate on the ride… it was for sure noticed lol! I’m really anxious to try out some new trails, love the one I go on but it’s getting old lol! So maybe I’ll get the courage to load my bike on the car rack this week and head to Tempe for a ride.

This weekend we killed it in the backyard! We got so much work done, tree’s planted, and cleaned. Almost two years ago we had a vision and started working on the small space food forest for our home, it was hard to see the outcome on most days, some days I regretted even starting this whole project… but now, we are so thrilled with the changes!

Between the two pics we have pulled up about 2-3 rows of brick to enlarge the grow space a bit. Had all the bougainvillea removed, then slowly started to plant in trees little by little. If you have planted fruit trees before then you know how pricey some trees can be! So we did it over the course of a year and a half or so. Our yard is far from done but it’s finally starting to look less like a project, which I love haha!