Off the grid

For the past week I was in Mexico at a yoga retreat at Prana del Mar.

At Prana del Mar there are no phone lines, gas lines, water lines, electric lines. The retreat center is powered by solar panels and the water comes from a well. It is literally off the grid.

There was wifi, but it was slow and limited. I tried getting on (personal, definitely not work) e-mail a few times without success so I gave up and decided that it might be nice to have limited access to the outside world: No Facebook, no e-mail, no blogging, just a few text messages.

We practiced yoga to the sounds of birds; roosters; wood peckers; cows and their cow bells; donkeys; horses; the wind. Our view while practicing was the dessert, the ocean, the mountains.

Most days we had a two-hour practice in the morning and and hour and a half practice in the evening. We meditated 20-40 minutes a day.

Besides the bathroom in our rooms there were no mirrors in the community bathrooms throughout the property. Instead of mirrors there were framed words, such as resplendent; perfect; beautiful; true; sublime; rapturous; ethereal; pure …

We had … Continue reading

Nursing my aches, chills, fever

Yesterday morning I woke up around 6. On weekends if I wake up before 7 I usually laze around in bed until 7ish and hope to catch a few more zzzzs.

I felt really tired and hoped to fall back asleep. I figured I needed the rest.

Plus every single morning I have something to do. Monday through Friday I get up at 5:30. Monday through Thursday I am on a shuttle bus to work at 7 a.m. Friday mornings I hit the gym for a 6:30 a.m. class and then back home to work. On Saturdays Curt and I hit the gym. Sundays I get the grocery shopping done and then take a late morning yoga class.

Yesterday I slept in until 9;30. About 1 Curt and I headed out to lunch. I felt a little off but figured I was just hungry.

I had a couple of beers and a burger, which had a fried egg and bacon. Talk about getting my protein in.

After lunch I still felt funky. (I figured it might have been the ginormous sundae I had the evening before. Eeekk! I went overboard with the dessert.)

When we got home I changed into … Continue reading

Small break from clean eating

When one tries to maintain a healthy lifestyle there are always bumps in the road.

Last night one of our law firms took my boss who is about to retire (have I mentioned that yet? That’s one of the BIG changes going on at work and in my life. He has been my boss for almost eight years) and our team out to dinner.

I looked at the menu ahead of time online. I do this often to find something to pick out and be ready to order when the time comes. This helps to already have a decision made and not be swayed by other items or even the specials or what others may be ordering. My mind is made up.

But the menu didn’t have a lot of plates and was more of an hors d’oeuvres kind of place.

So what I decided last night as I was looking at the amazing cheese and meat plates and ham hock sliders and empanadas and the delicious wine that was being poured that I would just go with it.

Eat the cheese, drink the wine, dabble in the desserts. And get back to healthy eating today, which is what I did (for … Continue reading

Living life, making choices

When I started to lose weight at the end of 2006 I received support. Once the pounds started to fall off and be noticeable compliments poured in.

But as the healthy journey continued and continues to this day things change.

People aren’t as likely to support my journey to maintaining my healthy lifestyle.

I don’t expect cheerleaders. But I also don’t expect negative comments, food pushers, judgment, etc.

As my journey continues I learn to focus on myself and my path. My judgment of others is quite limited. And frankly, I have enough to worry about myself that I don’t care about someone else’s portions or if they decide to have dessert or not.

We are adults and make our own choices, good, bad, healthy, unhealthy …

What I ask of my friends, loved ones and really everyone: Please mind your own business. If I decide to not have dessert or bread or whatever, what’s it to you? If you want to have dessert or bread or whatever, feel free.

We only live life once. And I do love to eat and drink. But I also love to be and feel healthy. And let’s be honest, in vanity I like … Continue reading

Let’s play a drinking game … drink more water

One day on the shuttle bus on the way to work I said to one of my co-workers/friends, Let’s play a drinking game. Every time I drink water you drink water. For some time now I have been encouraging him to drink more water.

I mentioned this story to another co-worker. She said she wanted to play the drinking game, too. She doesn’t take the shuttle bus to work. So I gave her another hint: Drink water while driving to and from work. She told me the other day she has been doing that and has been drinking more water. YEA!

I have written about water in the past. But I feel like this is an important subject, which can be written and talked about over and over.

Another co-worker sent me a forwarded e-mail called Water vs. Coke. I am sure many of you have seen this in the past.

According to a Livestrong article, some of the water stats are proven below. I can’t find anything that proves or disproves this whole list. But from my experience and all the research I have done over the years I believe most of them. According to, we don’t necessarily … Continue reading

Eating out … a lot

I had three lunch dates this week and one dinner date. That’s a lot of eating out for me, especially during the week.

On Tuesday I had lunch with my friend/co-worker Melissa. We had sushi. Delicious, filling and healthy. I love sushi.

Yesterday I had lunch with my friend/co-worker Stephanie. We had pho (pronounced fuh, rhymes with duh). I was pretty sure pho was fairly healthy. I did a little research.

According to the Livestrong website, pho is high in electrolytes. This site gives the nutritional information to many varieties of pho. So I have to kinda guess where my lunch fits in. I ordered a small bowl, which was anything but small. And I probably only ate half.

Curt and I went out to dinner last night.

(Sometimes Thursdays are my easy day to take off from exercise. But because I had lunch out and knew that we would be eating dinner out I had to jump on the spin bike at work and burn some calories.)

Curt and I had dinner at Sea Salt, one of our favorite restaurants in Berkeley. They have a quirky and delicious menu. I ordered the halibut and quinoa–a fairly … Continue reading

Caffeine free?

Since I have been sick I haven’t had coffee. It’s been almost two weeks.

My last cup of coffee was Christmas Eve morning. Though it is possible I had some Christmas morning. Because I wasn’t sick quite yet. But I think I had a fuu-fuu white chocoate Ghiradelli drink thing. And it was good! OK, after looking up the link I realize that appears to have coffee in it. But it can’t be that much. I added two tablespoons of the powder to a cup of hot milk.

Now I normally drink coffee every day. On the weekends we make it at home. And we make good coffee at home. We drink Blue Bottle coffee. Yes, we are now coffee snobs.

At work we have Starbucks and Peet’s. They are OK. But they can’t compete with Blue Bottle. I drink coffee at work for a variety of reasons: it’s easy; it’s there; I like caffeine; I think I need caffeine; it’s part of my routine: get to work; crank up computer; fill up water glass and make a cup of coffee; start my work day.

For the past two weeks I have been drinking (what feels like gallons … Continue reading

Planning can take away stress

I had dinner tonight with my good friends Alicia and Sue to celebrate Alicia’s birthday.

Eating out can be tricky when trying to eat healthy. If the menu of the restaurant I am going to is online I will view it ahead of time to get an idea of what I want. That can take a lot of the stress out ordering and eating.

The three of us met at Townhouse in Emeryville. We all like this restaurant. I decided ahead of time that I would have the Grilled Lamb salad with the sauce and dressing on the side.

When I arrived, Alicia and Sue were already there and had ordered an appetizer. So I had a little fried calamari. (Not part of the plan.)

I ordered a glass of wine–part of my plan. And I did have  have the salad, which was delicious.

For dessert I ordered sorbet and had a bite of Sue’s bread pudding and a few bites of Alicia’s mocha brownie thing. Sorbet was part of the plan (the extra bites were not).

So I think I did pretty well. The caloric intake has been very disciplined this week.

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Yummy, cool, refreshing low-calorie snack/dessert

Usually after dinner or sometime in the evening Curt and I like to have “an ice cream.”

We normally buy the Skinny Cows no sugar added, which are pretty yummy and pretty good when it comes to calories, fat and they actually have fiber.

I am trying to minimize my dairy intake, which is really tough. But I think I may be lactose intolerant. I haven’t completely eliminated. I mean, I love cheese!

Anyway, I recently started buying (for myself) Dreyer’s Fruit Bars. The “regular” small ones in the variety pack are 60 calories. Last week when I was at the grocery I noticed they also had the fruit bars with no sugar added. I decided to try them. They are still pretty tasty and satisfy my sweet treat at night with 25 calories (according to the box) and 30 calories according to the Web site.

And I could have sworn the others I had were 45 calories on the box. But the Web site says 60. Oh well, either way they are decent in the calorie count and are a nice treat whenever you want.

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