Monday, November 29, 2010

Harvest Time- How I have missed thee

When I lived in my old neighborhood (Lincoln Square- a whopping mile and a half from where I live now), there was this great little mexican grocery store that I loved called "Harvest Time".  Harvest time had great food, great produce aisle and even greater prices. 
Today I had the day off, and I needed to go to the grocery store to get us taken care of for the week. 
Here are the things I purchased:
1lb green grapes
1 pinapple (whole)
4 granny smith apples
bunch of green onions
3 jalapano peppers
3 sorriano peppers
2 onions
Jiffy Creamy peanut butter
3.4 lbs chicken breast
1/2 lb boars head black forest ham
1/2 lb munster cheese
chicken stock
2 cans chick peas
2 cans cannellini beans
2 cans pizza sauce
1 can tomato paste
1 can black olives
bunch of cilantro
lime juice (the kind in the lime)
chicken bouline cubes
beef bouline cubes

Grand Total...

wait for it...


steals of the day
1/2 boars head deli meet- $2.62
1/2 lb munster cheese (from the DELI)- $1.36
3.68 lb boneless chicken breast= $4.77

And that, ladies and genetleman is why I love Harvest Time.

If you live in chicago, I highly recommend checking it out.  They have the most amazing guacamole in the city.  Its fabulous! 

Harvest Time Grocery Story
Lawrence and Rockwell
Chicago, IL

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bend it like Bikram

Bikram Yoga is a set standard 26 poses of yoga done in a room heated at 105 degrees.  In other words...Hot Yoga.
Last week I stumbled upon a groupon for 20 sessions for $40 (it's quite a session at the yoga place I go to is $18)...of course they get you in for cheap and then you fall in love and it's hard to leave:(

Anyways, since it is such a unique experience, I thought I would share my reactions and thoughts and I go through these 20 sessions.

Session 1: Saturday November 20th 9:45 am- 11:15am

I arrived at the yoga studio (Bikram Yoga Andersonville )approx. 20 minutes before class.  In gearing up for the class they tell you not to eat or drink anything 2 hours before class - you want to make sure your food is completely digested.  I did a GREAT job Friday night of drinking water.  i had soooo much water--- but then I followed that with a ginormous bowl of popcorn...perhaps not the greatest idea.
Anyways, I got a good night sleep Friday and woke up excited (and a bit nervous) Saturday morning.  Scott dropped me off as he had to do some work. 
As I entered the studio, the two ladies at the entry way were extreamly welcoming.  I filled out some basic forms and they told me the goal of the first class is to stay in the room.  they reminded me it is about 105 degrees in there.  If I felt natious, I was to sit on my mat and take a sip of water.  No need to fear...i would get there.
I went to the locker room to take off my outer layer (they recommend wearing shorts and a sports bra) and grabbed my yoga mat and my towel and headed in to the warm oven of the studio. 
WWHHHHAAAAMMMMMM---- it hit me like a ton of bricks.  Not the heat but the SMELL.  A friend of mine compared it to a bunch of hippies...I dont know how to describe it...but it was strong.

After a few minutes in there of some deep breathing exercizes, the smell waifed away and I was able to concentrate on my practice of yoga.

There are 26 poses of yoga, each done twice (once right after the other).  Two of the poses are breathing exercizes.  Helping to clean the body of toxins. 

Day one I did have to sit down for the second set of several of the standing stretches...but was able to complete the ones on the ground....or at least attempt them.  I consider that a success.

I have never been so releaved to walk out the door and get into cold air in my life...only to realize it wasnt that cold :(

now, I know its not polite to stare....but some of these people in this class are freaking amazing.  I am not sure my body will ever bend that way...I doubt I will ever be able to even lock my standing leg on many of the one legged poses (Im not very good at balance).  But even yesterday (my second day) I was able to complete more poses, push myself further and actual complete the camel pose....

I plan on going on Wednesday (as the office closes at 3) prior to the Thanksgiving extravaganza....

Ill keep you updated on my love/hate relationship with Bikram.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Weight a minute....

I've been very lucky this far in my life.  I haven't really ever had to worry about my weight.  I was able to eat what I wanted, work out when I wanted and not really worry about gaining anything. Evidently, my body has changed.  Now that I look back on it, I guess I really started gaining the weight about the time I moved to Chicago.  Slowly but surely, the LBS have become OMG's.

They are sneaky little suckers, those extra pounds. First they just come one at a time...and then they start to double.  First it's just 5 and you'r like ahhhh--- its 5 extra pounds, no big deal..then it's 10 and your buying new pants...but when it becomes 20 there is something you need to start doing about it.  You don't realize how it got this "out of control". 

with an impending wedding (yeah)- I have to put a plan of action in place to jumpstart this process (great timing right ...the week before thanksgiving)

(keep in mind 3,500 calories=1 lb)

1.  Reduce alcohol consumption- those glassses of wine a day---that's 300 calories of emptyness- no longer acceptable  (7 days a week*300= 2,100 calories a week)
2.  Simmer down the "stress eating"- now that things have settled down at work- it is the best time to start reducing this bad habit I have somehow picked up along the way.
3.  Bikram Yoga- Bikram Yoga is 90 minutes of yoga done in a room heated to 105 degrees.  According to some very brief "research" done today, a session of yoga can burn up to 1000 calories for a person of my weight.  I bought a groupon for Bikram Yoga- 20 sessions for $40.  I have use my 20 sessions in the next three months.  I will reserve a special blog for Birkram Yoga- I had my first experience yesterday---and what an experience it was).  I need to hit the yoga studio at least 2 times a week...
4.  Gym- I want to make sure to start up my cardio and weight training again.  I have rejoined yet another gym (XSport) and it appears this may be more up my alley.  There are three of them on my way home. I haven't quite figured out what I think about it yet, but so far things are going ok.  If I can do a cardio class, and some weight training, I should be able to kick some pounds off there.

SMART Goals-
I have been in the professional world for too long.  I can't create goals for myself that aren't SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely).

1.  I would like to lose 20 pounds by April 14th (my 30th BIRTHDAY).  To hit this goal, I need to lose
5 lbs a month.  Not too shabby!  (I certainly put on pounds that quickly)
2.  I would then like to lose another 10 for the wedding (9/4/2011) at that point it is continuing on my current path.

So...Im off to the races!  Look for frequent updates on my challenges and successes!  I am excited to share this journey with you!