2nd verse, same as the first!

Well my first week of being 50 has been fabulous!

An old friend, Beryl, came to town from Georgia. She hadn’t been home in 7 years and we had a get together at Terra Fermata… one of my best memories of Beryl is that when I was so exhausted from being a new, young, single mom and working full time, she came over, packed up my baby and took him for an overnight. More than once! I cannot even begin to tell you how fortunate and grateful I was for that simple act of kindness.

Beryl's welcome home party.

Beryl’s welcome home party.

I also ran a 5K my first week of being 50. The Reindeer Dash. It was my first real run since fracturing my foot. I’ve done some minimal interval training, but no real running. I thought I was going to die! It is still hot and humid here in sunny South Florida! By mile one I was gasping for air, but I finished it! My friend Shannon and her daughter ran back to where I was and finished it with me. The support I have from my friends is nothing short of AMAZING! My friend Ed took first place in the mens 50-54 and Shannon took 3rd in the women’s 40-44. So super proud of them both! Elizabeth hit a PR and I think that Dana did too! This was 12 year old Breeze’s first 5K!

Done!

Done!

And my daughter Tiffany and I started the Attack phase of Dukan yesterday. I have gained back almost 30 pounds of my 100+ lb weight loss. I am eating well, but haven’t been MOVING or drinking enough water. It amazes me how fast it creeps on. But I will not be beaten! LOL… I am a fighter and just need to buckle down. I can make excuses all day long, but the bottom line is I am not making enough time for ME! I have spread myself out very thin and it is effecting my weight and my health. That stopped yesterday!

Attack Day 1:
Breakfast: 1 boiled egg, 1 FF Greek Yogurt, coffee
Lunch: Stir fry steak and onions
Snack: Boiled Egg
Dinner: Lean pork chop with onions, garlic and ginger
Snack: FF greek yogurt with flax seed meal
Water: 1000 mL (need to increase!!!)
Exercise: 32 minute walk with Tiffany and Kapone

So fortunate to be able to still be out walking on the waterfront in December in shorts and tank tops!

So fortunate to be able to still be out walking on the waterfront in December in shorts and tank tops!

Tiff and I were suppose to fly to San Antonio Monday morning on a business trip for our billing business, but ice storms in Dallas prevented us from going. So we decided that Monday was the day to start, and we did! I’m down 1.5 pounds since yesterday morning 🙂

I hope everyone has a fantastic week! I sure plan on it!

Ciao!

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Finding Sandi…

It’s been a busy week! I started out with my typical day off and spent all of Monday cleaning house after having grandkids there all weekend! 😀

On Monday (or was that Sunday? Sheesh, I can’t remember!) I managed a walk with a friend over the bridges that I posted about last week…

Walking the bridges!

Walking the bridges! Around the 3 km mark there is a dock that goes out over the water! 

Then Tuesday and Wednesday a commute to job 1… the Center Director at an amazing birth house. Upside… I work with some crazy and fun people. Downside… it’s an hour drive each way and for only 3 days a week, which doesn’t pay the bills 😦

It's been a grey kinda week! Grey dress, grey hose, grey shoes... at least the sun is shining!

It’s been a grey kinda week! Grey dress, grey hose, grey shoes… at least the sun is shining!

Then on Thursday I started a new, every once in a while job, teaching at a college about 20 minutes even further from my home… Not complaining, as it supplements my income!

Then on Thursday afternoon I drove another 35 miles south to do some admin work for a midwife friend of mine who is converting her practice to electronic medical records. I spent the night at her house, so I could get an early start (and not waste time and money on driving!) and had this yummy breakfast…

Chicken sausage, mushrooms and eggs. Mmmm!

Chicken sausage, mushrooms and eggs. Mmmm!

Here it is finished…

Breakfast plated.

Breakfast plated. I love adding avocado!

I then set out for a long day of data entry and scanning. Totally worth it. As it could all be done via wifi I sat outside on the deck next to her pool and worked all day! The Vitamin D was welcome! BeBe loved it too…

BeBe loves being a Florida dog!

BeBe loves being a Florida dog!

Janice came home just as I was cooking this for dinner…

Stir fry: Omaha steaks with scallion, garlic, mushroom and asparagus! OH MY!

Stir fry: Omaha steaks with scallion, garlic, mushroom and asparagus! OH MY!

I have found myself in a bit of a rut and a little down the past few weeks. My plan was to come home, work PT at the birth house and take time to get my health and fitness business up and going. Part of the problem with feeling down is that I COMFORT EAT 😦     I have caught myself reaching for things (mostly dark chocolate or Fritos) when I’m feeling sorry for myself. Two significant things happened yesterday to kick me back on to the right path.

One… I spoke with Jamie, my amazing logo designer, about getting my web site for the business going. She is so encouraging and gave me an assignment to get the text going. So do know that I am committed to getting the site up by FEBRUARY 1st (I say this more for me than anyone else, lol)

Two… I got a message on Facebook in my “other” folder, while on the phone with Jamie! I opened it and found these words (I’ve not posted the whole message)…

I just wanted to let you know what an inspiration your Dukan journey has been for me. I started Dukan on August 20th of this year and so far have banished 50lbs. I have about 35 more to go. Not sure how I came across your blog, but I have finally got caught up to date with your journey. Soooo many times I have turned to read a few days of your blog when I was battling cravings etc and the words spoke right to me!

Towards the end of the message the letter writer encourages me to write more posts, and I need to, and thank you for encouraging me to do that! This weekend I am going to write out a blog post schedule and STICK TO IT! Ironically, she and I started Dukan on the exact same day (a year apart) with the exact same weight to lose! How cool is that!?!!

I need to find myself. I need to take the time to immerse myself in solitude and write and write and write my business goals out, again, once more, so that it becomes clear again. I need to keep writing out my vision boards and focus on making them a reality. And I need to respect who I am, what I’ve achieved and continue to feed my body GOOD.CLEAN.FOOD! Because I look and feel better than ever!

How do you make sure that you turn your visions into reality? How do you keep yourself on track?

Ciao!

 

 

 

 

Dukan – Sunday Celebration and weekly wrap-up!

Consolidation Phase Day 128 of 500!
Weekly Weight: 146-149
Goal Weight: 155
So Consolidation DOES work 🙂 I can’t believe it’s been 128 days since I met my goal weight! This summer has flown by! I am very consistent with my weight, still weighing every morning and still VERY happy with the results!

This past week has been busy! I am moving back to the States on Thursday after living abroad for 4 years. I have been packed for over a month 🙂 I know, a bit OCD, but what to say. I’ve got 2 large suitcases and a large box as checked luggage (things I didn’t want to risk never seeing again if my shipped boxes disappear into the stratosphere or something.) It’ll be worth paying extra for the peace of mind.

Exercise this past week included running 4-5K 3 times. Walking 4-5K the other 4 nights. I also did 30-45 minutes of yoga 4 times the past week. I hiked the mountain 1 time this past week and hope to do it Tuesday morning as one last hurrah 🙂

I met Hanna and Diana and Jacob (next photo) on the street a couple of weeks ago. They are from Sweden and here to attend the University just down the block from my flat. Jacob had on a Miami Dolphins hat, so of course I stopped them 🙂 They’ve been to dinner a few times and I wish I had met them sooner!

Jacob

 

The weather in Hangzhou has been PERFECT this past 4 days. Sunny and a cool breeze. I’ve had the flat windows opened and the whole place is fresh. The summer heat was oppressive! So it’s a nice break.

Let’s see… what did I eat this week. Lots of tea eggs, as per usual. Lunches consisted of leftover roasts (both pork and beef), salad, cheddar cheese and almonds. Dinners were steak stir fry, pork roast, beef roast, shrimp stir fry and my new favorite way to cook veggies; veggies (broccoli, asparagus, carrots and garlic stems) steamed in coconut milk… OH MY you have no idea how good THAT is… a must try! I also had a dinner out with friends at a local sushi restaurant and a hot pot dinner… guests for dinner almost nightly, trying to cook up all the food in the freezer AND say good bye to friends, new and not so new.

Pork roast… Mmm!

Out for sushi with Baby Milva!

hot pot, hangzhou

Out for dinner with Joe, Chiara and baby Nunu!

You throw in the meat and veggies and it cooks in the hot pot… the liquid on the left is spicy, spicy!!! Mmmmmm!

 

 

 

And I did my last water birth lecture in front of a hundred people or so in a nearby town. I hope my message got across to some folks and they have gentler births!

midwife, china water birth

Me and Liang… on our way to my last water birth lecture. She’s the lead midwife supporting water birth at Hangzhou AIMA.

So, that’s my wrap up! How did your week go? Is it cooling down where you live?

Ciao!

Creating a Powerful & Inspiring Vision for your Life – Step 3

And now Step 3 from the powerful ideas of The Wellness Warrior

Sit down and meditate on your vision. Call it in.

What does this mean? Sounds real “froo froo” as I like to call it. But, from a positive point of view this is an excellent way to envision what it is that you want to inspire and create.

I dedicate time to do this 5 days a week. I actually have it in my iPhone calendar to ensure that I am reminded to do it. This is time that I sit quietly, with no distractions like TV, podcasts, Facebook, etc and simply think deeply about what my vision is. Nearby is my trusty Blue Sparkly Notebook, ready and waiting to take down ideas. If it’s in the evening, I light a few candles, close the curtains in the room I’m in and make sure I have a nice cup of tea (Earl Grey is my preference!) sitting next to me. Also, for some reason I like to sit on my yoga mat while I’m meditating/thinking about my vision.

By taking this time, creating this space and meditating on what I want, things are coming to fruition in regard to my health and fitness business. I can truly see them taking shape and I can see myself hitting the ground running once I arrive home next week.

It is sometimes difficult to just take the time to sit and think. Or sit and meditate. Or sit and envision what it is that YOU want for your life. However, the rewards for that 5 minutes of time, even if only once or twice a week are astounding!

Do you give yourself quiet time every once in a while to just sit and ponder your vision in life?

Ciao!

Positive Affirmation: I am attracting EVERYTHING I desire!

Recipe – Low Carb – Roast Dinner

Last week I met 3 Swedish students that are here in Hangzhou to study a semester at the local university. I’m an extrovert (I’m sure most of you figured THAT out by now!) and the young man in the group was wearing a Miami Dolphins cap, so of course, being the Dolfan that I am, I said hello! By the end of the conversation I had invited Jacob, Diana and Hanna to my flat for dinner on Friday. Tatiana, one of my colleagues, also joined us.

On the menu:
Roast (this one was a prime rib hunk of love!)
Spaghetti squash (that turned out to be pumpkin, lol!)
Roasted vegetables – Onions, yam (which ended up being Taro) and carrots **TARO IS *NOT* LOW CARB… just so you know.
Fresh salad

I cooked the roast for 3.5 hours in the toaster oven and it was PERFECT… I had to fight the urge to not consume it before the guests arrived! The meat fell apart with the fork. In the container with the roast I added the onions, taro and carrots.

I also put the “spaghetti” squash I cut in half, cut size down in a different pan and added the balance of the onions, taro and carrots and baked in the toaster oven (after the roast was done) for 50 minutes. This is when I realized that the “spaghetti” squash wasn’t and went to plan B 😀

Plan B was removing the flesh from the pumpkin, mashing it, adding in 4 pkts of Splenda, a Tbs of ghee and a tsp of cinnamon… OH MY GOODNESS was this yummy!

I threw the salad together and welcomed my guests… we had a lovely dinner! Here’s the pics!

After everyone left I did a quick clean up and then went for a short 3 km run around the block… perfect way to end the evening!

low carb, roast dinner, prime rib

Hunk of prime rib love… Mmm! You should always brown each side of the meat before roasting in the oven.

low carb, roast dinner, prime rib

Just browning this made the house smell delish!

roast dinner, low carb, vegetables

Carrots, celery, taro and onion… perfect compliments to a roast!

Seasonings… keep it simple!

Taro, Taro root

Taro in all it’s purply glory… It’s quite starchy, but has a lot of bang for it’s buck… it’s full of fiber and tastes a bit nutty.

low carb, roast dinner, prime rig

Ready for the toaster oven!

pumpkin, squash

My Un-spaghetti squash… it was yummy anyways!

low carb, roast dinner, prime rib

Falling apart with a fork!

low carb, roasted vegetables

The veggies after I removed from the roasting pan… Nom!

pumpkin, squash, mashed pumpkin

Making Mashed Pumpkin

Mixed Salad

Mixed Salad… I love adding purple cabbage for color and taste!

Dinner ready for the guests!

Hanna, Tatiana, Diana and Me… Lovely dinner companions!

One of the awesome things about living abroad is the people you meet. We have choices in life. We can go about our business and walk around with our eyes averted or we can keep our eyes open and look for new friendships. I choose the latter. I have met so many amazing people from all over the world these past 4 years living abroad… treasures, every one of them and lots of stories I have of my journey, as I head back home for good in 10 days.

Do you extend yourself to strangers?

Ciao!

p.s. added a pic of my Blue Sparkly Notebook to the last post 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dukan – Celebration Sunday & Mountain Hike

Sunday was Consolidation Day 114 of 500.
Today’s Weight: 145
Goal Weight: 155

Sunday is my Celebration Sunday day on Dukan. When you enter the third phase of Dukan, the Consolidation Phase, you get one celebration meal a week. You can eat whatever you want. This is in the first half of Consolidation (mine is 500 days long and the rule applies until I hit day 250). In the second half you can have 2 celebration meals a week.

I’ve chosen to remain wheat, gluten and sugar free, so my celebration meals usually include something like french fries (i’m not eating white potatoes) or lots of fruit! That was the case today.

I started the morning out with a 2 egg omelet with onion, asparagus and garlic. I then went on a 5.59 km mountain hike with my friend Tatiana. This is the trail that I try to hike every Sunday morning when I’m in Hangzhou. I have to say that during yesterday’s hike up I realized that I was really going to miss this part of living in China. Moving back to Florida (which I love more than any place in the world) won’t include mountain hiking!

runkeeper, mountain hike

Burned off breakfast and then some!

runkeeper, mountain hike, hangzhou, china

286 meter = 938 feet… not a bad climb 🙂

mountain hike, hangzhou, china

mountain hike, hangzhou, china

Tatiana

mountain hike, west lake, hangzhou, china

And I wore shorts… in public. You can see West Lake in the background. It’s a beautiful view from the top of this mountain!

And this was my reward… a fruit salad for lunch, along with a iced cafe latte with Splenda and a TON of water… like 2 liters.

fruit salad, hangzhou, china

I shared this delicious fruit platter with Tatiana. So fresh and cool after a long hike in the heat.

My driver Jerry met us at the restaurant and took us to the wet market. I’m going to have to go back and get pictures… I’m always so busy picking out my stuff that I don’t pull out the iPhone and take pics! The wet market has the freshest veggies, fruits, meats and live poultry and fish to choose from. I get my veggies, pork and beef there. The stands that I purchase my pork and beef from both have range free farms. The meat is butchered the day before and I can pick my cuts. Tatiana picked out a 1/2 kilo of live jumbo shrimp to make us a late afternoon snack.

We got home, I separated out all the meat and spent time reading for a while. Around 4 Tatiana simmered the shrimp with fresh ginger, sea salt and pepper corns. I made a wasabi & tamari mix and we had some yummy shrimp!!!

Didn’t have dinner, as I was stuffed. I had a couple of bites of cheese and a handful of almonds to round out my evening.

What did you do on Sunday? Were you active?

Ciao!

 

 

 

Dukan – Consolidation Day 108

Monday was Consolidation Day 108 🙂

Today’s Weight: 146
Goal Weight: 155
Still lovin’ that 🙂

Back to work in Hangzhou. Kind of a frustrating day. Went to the bank to make a deposit and they wouldn’t let me because I didn’t have my passport… to make a deposit… sigh. Then I went to the post office to ship off the last 4 boxes to the States and the guy went through all my stuff to make sure it was packed well enough to not break anything and DROPS the package with my Chinese china!!!! Breathe IN, Breathe OUT… I flew off the handle… I couldn’t help it… I am not perfect, I threw a tantrum. They quickly finished me up, I apologized a million times to my driver, Jerry, who is the most patient person in the world (besides Kitty)… he smoothed things over and got me the hell out of there before, well before I got into trouble!

My granddaughter Sadie represents the 3rd generation of epic tantrum throwers 🙂
My daughter Jenni, however, was the Queen of them!

Then back to work where I managed to upset the apple cart by providing a not so glowing audit about hand washing that had the doctors doing better than the nurses. I was on a roll!

Went home and had me some dinner and felt better 🙂 I also am tutoring a Chinese midwife in Medical English and passing the NCLEX-RN exam. So we worked on that last night.

Sunday I got in a 5K run in under 40 minutes after not running for 9 days due to my bout of food poisoning, but I pushed myself and did it… which makes me feel so good 🙂 I then went up to my flat and did 30 minutes of stretching, yoga and exercise bands. I have SO much energy when I’m done running… it’s amazing!

I also got a few pictures from Rose, my personal assistant in Guangzhou from my multiple stays there this past 5 months. Here’s a couple I want to share:

Water birth training in April 2012. Guangzhou.

Grand Opening of the Water Delivery Center in Guangzhou Elizabeth Women’s Hospital – April 2012

I’ve been saying that I haven’t felt like I accomplished much in the past year. Maybe I set my expectations too high for myself… I’m a perfectionist. But when I look at these pictures I do realize that I’ve accomplished quite a bit. The hospitals keep referring to me as their International Water Birth Expert… and I’ve come to realize, I really am! I mean who better to be called that than someone who has delivered hundreds of babies in the water (all over the world, including on 4 continents!) and has taught water birth all over the world? The 5 hospitals here in China that I’ve done the water birth trainings in have collectively performed over 100 water births in the past year! I am proud of their accomplishments and that the midwives and doctors at these 5 hospitals have accepted water birth as a “normal” way for women to deliver their babies. And delighted for the women and babies who have experienced this amazing way of birthing!

Breakfast: 2 slices of bacon and 2 tea eggs
Snack: FF Greek yogurt with Splenda and flaxseed meal
Lunch: 3 ham slices with 3 slices of Pepper Jack cheddar… Mmmm!!
Dinner: Stir-fry pork with onions and asparagus (cooked in coconut oil).
Snack: Beef jerky… eeek that out a couple little pieces at a time to make it stretch (thanks, Suzanne for bringing me the 3 bags!!) ** Kira… Titters LOVES jerky!

I hope everyone is having a great week! I have 23 days until I fly home… for good… or for now… LOL
What type of exercise or movement did you do on Monday??

Ciao!