I’ve decided. It feels fabulous to love the gym. Well, in relative terms.

Here’s what I love, and I find this great motivation to sweat my lazy buttock at least 4 days a week. These are reasons beyond the usual – “endorphins!” and “looser jeans!” explanation. (It’s hard to imagine,  only 2 months ago, I considered 3 days at the gym pushing myself beyond the “superwoman threshold”.)

These are my cheap thrills! (Not just cheap, it’s all FREE!!)

  • Bright pink cheeks! Without having to attribute it to “the Asian glow”!
  • Feeling the little donut (a.k.a love handles) turn into, currently – a “two-pack”
  • Definition, definition, definition. Otherwise knows as, discovering my biceps and all the other -ceps that are starting to introduce themselves to me.
  • Regularity!!!!!!! (If you know what I mean…)
  • Fully appreciating how good rest days feel knowing I worked hard all the other days!
  • The hot shower.
  • Knowing that my mental strength and perseverance has reached a newer, higher level every time I’ve pushed myself beyond what I thought was possible.
  • Secretly checking myself out in the mirror and noticing how much straighter and more confident I stand!

With all this being said though…I still can’t bring myself to get on a scale. I haven’t been on one since 6 months ago. Yeah, I still have some issues and I’m not quite sure what it takes for me to be ready for it. OK. Moving on.

Tuesday

To be honest, it feels kind of nice to be taking a break from pumpkin in my oats. Here we have regular Quaker oats, half a banana, frozen grapes & blackberries, Yoplait Boston Cream Pie yogurt, and a sprinkling of yogurt & berry special K. Yummy!!

Pumpkin-less Oats.

Pumpkin-less Oats.

The satisfying oatmeal eliminated the need for a mid-morning snack, but I’m always happy when lunch time rolls around!! I packed a giant salad with hummus (giant because it filled a 6L tupperware. Muhahahah), toasted a Thomas WW English Muffin and spread one with my TJ’s horseradish hummus and the other I topped with less hummus and 3 slices of  smoked salmon –> a Winning combo!!

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Smoked Salmon & Hummus on English Muffins

Smoked Salmon & Hummus on Muffin SCORES!!

For dessert, I whipped out my brand new, never been tested Trader Joe’s Pomegranate Greek Yogurt! So far, I’ve had 3 experiences with Greek yogurt. Fage 0% plain drizzled with honey rocked my world, while Stonyfield’s Organic Vanilla Greek by itself made me upset – I recall feeling like I was eating tart cream cheese. THIS yogurt though…was different.

Dessert!

Dessert!

Much more tart and much less creamy than all the others, TJ’s has created a satisfying yogurt that I personally wouldn’t classify as “greek”. Good thing the color won me over! There was also a nice, subtle pomegranate flavor that wasn’t overpowering. It’s also cheaper than all the other guys, weighing in at $1.19 for one. It held me over until 4:30 and I was starving for a Fuji apple (no picture) and some roasted rice tea from Taiwan.

Roasted Rice Tea! My Favorite!

Roasted Rice Tea! My Favorite!

By 6, I had hopped on my shuttle bus back down to Chicago for my 2nd spin class. To fuel my workout (because I remembered sweating like a pig last week), I had one of these Special K protein bars.

Work-out Fuel

Work-out Fuel

The Special K double chocolate protein “meal” bar was unfortunately less satisfying than I had hoped. All I can say is, this tasted pretty much like a chocolate candy bar that had a nice chewy consistency. The bar tasted overwhelmingly sweet, and by the end of it I wanted something to distract my tastebuds AND frankly, to feel fuller. At 170 calories & 10g of protein, this isn’t a poor choice…but somehow this bar just radiates “artificial” to me.

Dinner was at 8:30 for me, and I craved something hearty! Eggs Benedict minus the Hollandaise. I made two different types. On the left, you have Canadian Bacon, Cheese, and an egg; On the right, you have smoked salmon and a runny egg all served atop a WW English muffin. (Can you tell I heart English muffins???)

Breakfast for Dinner!

Breakfast for Dinner!

Just for fun, I wanted to share my random “kick for the day”. My bathtub has desperately been in need of resealing/repainting since forever and FINALLY my landlord has found a funny handyman to do the job. Here’s what he left on my shower rail along with 80 miles of RED TAPE. (hahaha)

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Being a science dork (I was pre-dental in college and suffered through my chem, calc, organic, bio, physics…etc.) I fully appreciated the “+ or – 10AM” approximation. Apart from his interesting way of spelling things, I especially loved how he chose to impart his wisdom in print after he had completely demolished covered my tub in red tape. (think CSI crime scene).

THANKS to everyone who gave awesome advice to how you explain food photography to curious folks. I’ve now developed my own explanation and can’t wait until someone asks!!! Now, I have a much more personal and serious question that I’d love to hear what you have to say.  Do you feel like the number your scale displays completely screws with your head??

I do. And I know an undesirable number in the morning will mess up how I feel about myself for the rest of the day (or week), which is why I’ve stopped weighing since August. Call it low self-confidence or fear of facing the truth if you wish. I really don’t think this is healthy, but I don’t know how to dig myself out of the rutt.  What are your thoughts on this?