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Month

March 2011

Yay. Just YAY. #30daychip

Yesterday was my 30th day of working out for a minimum of 30 minutes. WOW. Part of me just wanted to “rest” after Saturday but you know what? I wasn’t sore and I had the time and it wasn’t like a little time on the treadmill was going to kill me.  Plus, I really really REALLY wanted this chip so there was no way I was going to rest!

What have I learned in these 30 days?

  • I feel overall so much better, less stressed and more “in shape”
  • Contrary to my own limited beliefs, I actually CAN work out in the evening, after dinner, OR right before midnight. And live to tell the tale. It’s just making that decision and doing it.
  • I’d rather work out at half hour till midnight than at 6am.
  • I love YouTube on my phone. Eddie Vedder & Johnny Depp! Ray LaMontagne (of course) Talking Heads (<<our wedding song). Peter Gabriel. Wallflowers. Earth Wind and Fire!
  • I love streaming Netflix on my phone.
  • I can sing really loudly and badly in my garage.
  • It’s soothing to work out with a lot of rain coming down through the open garage door.

I am infinitely grateful to @bradgansberg and the entire #7daychip Family for supporting me in this endeavor. But I can’t relax and enjoy this moment TOO long because I’m on Day 31 and I’m going for… 100.

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Race Recap: Oakland Running Festival Twilight 5k!

So y’all know that originally I was planning to do the Fight for Air Stairclimb, the Oakland Twilight 5k AND the Oakland Marathon Team Relay all in one weekend. Crazy, right? Right! And the 5k for a while felt like a bit of a consolation prize when I tried to register for the team relay and it was sold out. Well, it all turned out to be just riiiiiiiiight. (as it often does)

I did the stairclimb yesterday morning, then came home to blog (naturally) and rest and shower and nap. (<<<<excellent move) Then I woke up, had a nice cup of coffee and headed down to Jack London Square where I was to meet up with Sabrina again (she had had no nap, but a full day of sightseeing in San Francisco! Yow!). As soon as I got to the Square I found her AND a bunch of other people I knew! I met a friend whose daughter had gone to school with my daughter. I was so thrilled to see that she was there and ready to run her very first 5k. I was so excited for her! Go Jill!

Then I found my buddy and very first Couch-to-5k running partner, Mary. That made me feel so happy and emotional! She was the one who started it all with me, from our very first 60-second run that I wasn’t sure we would survive. How awesome. It seemed like every time I turned around I was bumping into someone else I knew. It was such a big PARTY! There were tons of kids, from little ones to teens, and older people and just every kind of person imaginable. The vibe was very big Oakland party.

They announced that they were moving the course last minute (?!) because of mud or puddles or some such thing, and that we were all going to walk a block down the Square to some green line on the ground and line up behind it.  Huh? But we all did just that, and at some point people started running and we were off. I put on my iPod earbuds and my regular running music and went. My only goal was to run the whole way at whatever pace. Often when I am training-running I will do some walk intervals, but I just really wanted to run this whole thing since I knew I was not going to be running any part of the Sunday marathon.

When we started out, it was just a huge sea of people. The kids were running all willy nilly, darting in and around the crowd, and the spectators were loud and noisy and boisterous and YAY! I just felt so overwhelmingly happy and full of love for Oakland. It was truly twilight and the weather and the light were beautiful and perfect. I just took off feeling relaxed and loving the feel of all the people around me. We headed through the square toward the Port of Oakland and then at some point not too far off, all of a sudden the front runners were heading back the other way. I actually love this feeling, seeing the fast runners just pushing it out. It’s so inspiring. I got so excited seeing them, including some awesome looking women and one small, very fast child. It was incredible!

Then before long we turned around and made a U-turn too, and back through the Square full of all the cheering people. YAY that was fun! Then we ran down toward the boathouse where my daughters have been rowing crew for the past 6 years. Man, I know this path so well. I have walked and run it so many times before, and there was something so lovely and comforting about that particular stretch. I saw the 2 mile mark and was like, What? Only 1.2 miles left? I was feeling so good. A lot of people were walking around me now, and I passed a whole bunch. Including some of those kids who had charged out of the gate so early.

I passed one guy walking with a cane, and one paralyzed arm, like he’d had a stroke or brain injury. He was just trucking along. There were two women walking backwards in front of him, cheering him on. It brought tears to my eyes. I saw quite a few people of significant size, and I was like, GO YOU! You’re not waiting to get to X weight to do this! You’re doing it!

I saw so many people who inspired me during this race. It just filled me with pride and happiness. My body felt great – not any soreness at ALL from the stairclimb. I just felt relaxed and good. When we came to the last .1, and that Finish arch was right THERE, I decided to just push it out into an all out sprint. It felt amazing. I just tore through that finish and all I can say is I hope that someone took a picture because I was on fire.

Then I stood at the finish and watched everyone else come in. I loved it. And then the craziest thing happened. I was standing there, and this woman I didn’t recognize said, “Excuse me, but do you blog?” I said, “Yeah…” and then she said, “Are you Foodie McBody?” I could have fainted dead away right there! She introduced herself as Bethany (@, a reader and blogger herself! WOW! WOW! I think that was one of the absolute highlights of the weekend.  Today I went and found her blog and it’s awesome! Everyone go read her!

That's @bgetnhot

Then I met up with Sabrina, who had ended up walking the race with the friend of friend, and apparently they had the best time chatting away! I was so excited to be with her at our SECOND finish line of the day! Yahoo!

That's @brematt!

Then we went and met up with Mary and her family at Souley Vegan, an awesome restaurant up the street. Yeah… vegan soul food! You can read my full review of it here but needless to say it has redeemed my estimation of vegan food! YUM!

Mary's daughter gazing adoringly at the Everything Platter
Crispy Tofu Burger is a thing of wonder!

I have to say that this was one of my favorite race experiences EVER. There was so much to love: being in my own town which I love, with other Oaklanders (and fans of), having such a cool and enthusiastic crowd to cheer us on, feeling totally relaxed and without pain or struggle. It was just wonderful. The only thing that would’ve been better would be getting some nice BLING but that didn’t happen. Ah well!

I had been feeling all sour grapesy about the actual marathon, but this morning I just wanted to be part of it. I knew my friend Lydia would be running the 2nd leg through my neighborhood so I made a sign (with two sides) and went down to Montclair Village to see the marathoners coming through. Well, I have never participated in a race as a Spectator before, and let me tell you, it was awesome. It was so exciting and I was so happy to see the runners and frankly very grateful that my running for the weekend was OVER. 🙂 People were SO happy to see my sign, and many of them yelled out, “No, YOU are awesome!” (What?!?) and “THANK  YOU!” It was fantastic. I just loved being there and again felt so inspired. Lydia zipped right past me before I could get my phone out to take a picture. She looked fabulous!!

I came home and it was time to get my own workout in. Yeah, there’s no days off with this #30daychip! Because TODAY I also completed my 30th day in a row of exercise! It felt great. Now I’m waiting for my #30daychip to show up. @Bradgansberg? 🙂

Day 30 done!!! Yippeeee!

When that was over, I was ready to rest and sit down. Finally. My friend Ericka and I met up to see the movie Jane Eyre. Which I loved. It was the perfect ending of a pretty much perfect weekend. YAYYYYY!!!!!!!!

Race Recap: The Fight For Air Stairclimb

Today was my first indoor race, and my first vertical race!! I was really worried because I got a major owie when training for this last week, and I was not sure I’d be fit to go. But I just had a hint of calf soreness this morning and felt definitely ready to climb.

It was POURING rain when I left my house. I went and parked at the BART station and then went over to San Francisco to the Bank of America Building where the event was, and to meet my team. I ran into Sabrina right away – Sabrina is a Twitter friend that I just met today! and also a formidable WordsWithFriends player. 😉 It is so cool to meet up with people I’ve “known” on Twitter. Sabrina has lost 100 lbs on Weight Watchers and is quite the inspiration. It was awesome to do this event with her (and also Event 2, later this evening!).

The event registration was a big wet mess! But it was also fun and there was a lot of good energy. Tons of firefighters around from all over California, and a hardy bagpipe crew. (I heart bagpipes) There I met up with our team captain Hazel (also from Twitter, also never met before today! – and she’s the one who talked me into this event) and Christine (fellow Cirque du Soleil fanatic!) and the rest of East Bay Fit Club. Yahoo!

So we got to mill around and wait on the bathroom line (nice thing about doing an event in a BUILDING is that there are actual restrooms instead of portopotties!) and then it was time for our “wave” to go. They sent people up the stairwell in waves of about 50 people, so there would be no traffic jam in the narrow space. I started out wanting to just kind of bound up the stairs. That lasted about…a flight and a half. Then I slowed WAY down and just said, Steady steady steady.

The first ten were the hardest I think. I wasn’t quite warm and in the zone yet. I was very happy to see the first water station around floor 12. There were signs on each floor — ONLY 40 FLIGHTS TO GO! (ha) KEEP BREATHING! and the like.

At around floor 25, I suddenly got this distraught feeling – were we going to #52 (stories) or #104? (flights) I felt like I was fine to be halfway done but now 1/4 way.

I have to say, it went pretty fast. And then we were at the top. I was extremely proud of the fact that I did not touch a handrail once on the way up.

How fast? 19 minutes and 16 seconds! Who knew, right? We were greeted at top by a bunch of balloons, some nice post-climb snacks, towels with which to wipe our sweaty brows (that was new!) and a pretty sweet view, even through the fog.

So? It was fun. It was definitely do-able! My training climb at the cemetery last week was a lot harder.

I want to thank everyone who generously donated to the American Lung Association on my behalf. I raised exactly $400 – wow! Thank you so much to:

  • Anderson, Karen
  • Bilotta, Annemarie
  • Brinckerhoff, Courtenay
  • Cons, Alexandra
  • Debare, Ilana
  • Edelstein, June
  • Honeycutt, Teresa
  • Huerta, Merle
  • jones, tracey
  • Kim, Emily
  • Lerner, Lisa
  • Lloyd, Merredith
  • Lutz, Ericka
  • Martin, Mary
  • Martin, Tara
  • Miller, Melissa
  • Will, Annie

Because I was able to raise almost double my original goal, I’ve decided to give away TWO quilts in thanks. The first one is going to Tara Martin. This is not a random giveaway, but a deliberate one. Tara is just my personal hero on so many levels, and if you want to know why, go read her blog. For the second quilt, I gave each person numbers based on how many $10 donations they gave into Random.org. It came up with

which was the number for… Tracey! Congratulations Tracey, and thank you for your donation! I will be contacting you re your choice of favorite color because there a number to choose from. And thank you so much to EVERYONE else for supporting me and the American Lung Association. You may or may not know I’ve fought for air on numerous occasions from asthma that has plagued me off and on throughout my life (thankfully more off than on but I am familiar with that feeling and it’s no fun).

Now it’s time to nap a bit before the next event, the Oakland Twilight 5k!

Who Wants Rocco’s New Book??

You all know I was lucky enough to win a copy of Rocco DiSpirito’s amazing cookbook Now Eat This! We have been going through the recipes and they have been shockingly EASY, fast and delicious. We’ve already made the tortilla soup half a dozen times and now we’re really into the turkey nachos. YUM. On the heels of the bestselling success of his low-calorie Now Eat This! cookbook, Rocco Dispirito has a new book featuring a weight-loss program “guaranteed to produce maximum results with minimum effort.”

Award-winning celebrity chef Rocco DiSpirito changed his life and his health-without giving up the foods he loves or the flavor. He has lost more than 20 pounds, participated in dozens of triathlons, and-after an inspirational role as a guest chef on The Biggest Loser-changed his own diet and the caloric content of classic dishes on a larger scale. In NOW EAT THIS! DIET, complete with a foreword by Dr. Mehmet Oz, DiSpirito offers readers a revolutionary 2-week program for dropping 10 pounds quickly, with little effort, no deprivation, and while still eating 6 meals a day and the dishes they crave, like mac & cheese, meatloaf, BBQ pork chops, and chocolate malted milk shakes. The secret: Rocco’s unique meal plans and his 75 recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snack time, all with zero bad carbs, zero bad fats, zero sugar, and maximum flavor. Now readers can eat more and weigh less-it’s never been so easy!

Now Eat This! Diet was published for the first time two days ago on the 22nd (congrats Rocco!) and I am lucky enough to have a free, signed copy for a giveaway! Here’s a little peek into one of the recipes: (click to enlarge) I’ll be giving away a copy of this book ON FRIDAY (April 1st) so if you want to be that lucky recipient, leave a comment here and tell me your favorite comfort food! I bet there’s a healthy version of it in Rocco’s book.

For anybody who really wants this book and either can’t wait or doesn’t win – there are many ways you can get your hands on one.

Barnes & Noble – http://bit.ly/hGdqDl
Books-A-Million – http://bit.ly/elumlG
Borders – http://bit.ly/fAOF5J
Hastings – http://bit.ly/dOKm9Z
Powell’s – http://bit.ly/eKmbjv
Tower Records – http://bit.ly/fgdzt5

EDITED TO ADD: The giveaway winners will be announced on Friday, April 1st! AND…. I just got the exciting news from “Rocco’s people” that there will be FOUR WINNERS! YAHOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Letting Go

Next week at this time, the Oakland marathon will be happening and I won’t be there. 😦

Sometimes we make plans and they just don’t work out, and it’s important to be able to let go gracefully. It’s not like I’m not going to be participating in athletic events next weekend: I’m still doing the Fight for Air StairClimb (still time to donate for a chance on a quilt!) and the Twilight 5k portion of the Oakland Running Festival.

What happened is that I was hoping that my family (me, Mr and 2 girls) would be able to run as a family team for the marathon relay. As it got closer it became apparent that a few of Mr. McBody’s orthopedic woes were not going to allow it. I’ve been looking and looking for a 4th person but it just didn’t pan out, until last Thursday. I went to sign us all up and BAM – it was sold out. SOLD OUT! I was so crushed. Incredulous really. Damn.

For a while I bandied about the idea of signing up for the half. But I think it’s crazy to even try and walk a half marathon with no training. I’ve been diligent about my 30-minute minimum of exercise for 22 days now (YAY #7daychip) but that has not included distance running. I think I could’ve probably pulled out the 7.5 miles, but not 13.1. Wah.

Part of me was mad at myself. Part of me felt really embarrassed. Part of me was soooooooo sad about not getting the gorgeous new Oakland marathon medal. But in the end I have to let it go. I have to remind myself of my own mantra: “Be mindful and don’t suffer.” To push myself through a half marathon would be a suffering thing, I can tell you. This just isn’t the time.

I am proud of the other goal I’ve been working toward this month, my Project Consistency. It’s been a very good thing for me. It would be different if I’d just been sitting on the couch eating ice cream all month, but that hasn’t been the case. I still have something to feel proud about.

I do want to do at least one or maybe two half marathons this year. The Las Vegas to be sure (so excited – running the LV strip AT NIGHT!), but maybe also the Disneyland Half in September. (Edited to add: SOLD OUT! DAMN!!!!!!!!) It’s just going to take some planning.

Yeah, planning WAY AHEAD. Wow!

Why Not Run A Little Bit Faster? Guest Post by @bradgansberg!

I am so honored that none other than Brad Gansberg himself is visiting FoodFoodBodyBody and has written a blog post just for us. He’s a running CHAMP and is actually starting up a free program to teach people to run in 100 days. How awesome is that? And I’m going to go try out this tempo running next time I’m out there.. which better be this weekend since I have TWO races (plus a stairclimb) the weekend after!!!

Update: Project Consistency

photo credit: nayski via Flickr

Less than a month ago, I made a decision that I was going to try and make exercise a more regular, consistent part of my life rather than just trying to jam it into the weekends. I made the decision that I was going to start working out a minimum of 30 minutes a day, come hell or high water.

The first week I was ON. I felt like I did not want to exercise after dinner and so I often ended up exercising DURING dinner, while everyone else ate. That worked okay, but I realized I did not want to eat separately from my family indefinitely. I was going to have to start something different. Reluctantly, I started working out much later at night – often starting close to 9:00pm or after. A few times, I ended up in bed, cold, tired and really wanting nothing more than to go to sleep. But then I started getting Tweets like this:

Brad Gansberg
BradGansberg @foodiemcbody Just get on the darn ellipitical and get it over with. It only hurts before you get started. After it is all good. GO NOW
BradGansberg @foodiemcbody Go kick some ass.
Brittany
gettinfitbritt @foodiemcbody you got this!!!
tracey
despite myself
MY2Thrive @foodiemcbody you can do it! get up get up get up!!!
Brittany
gettinfitbritt @foodiemcbody get up girl and shake yo booooootay!!!!! ❤#7daychip
Brandon
AHealthyDad @foodiemcbody you’ve got this, we’re all here for you!! #7daychip
healthyem
healthyem @foodiemcbody do it!!!!!! claim day 13!!!!!! come on, lady! #7daychip
Can you SEE? Can you see how motivating and irresistible it is when you have people like this in your ear, 24/7? No matter WHEN I wanted to whine and say “not today,” there was my healthy community, every day, nudging me on to health.
Today, I finished my 18th day of consistent, daily, at-least-30-minutes of exercise. Most often it was the garage elliptical, because it involved no commuting. And it showed me that no matter how little time I think I have, I always have 30 minutes.
One night, I started using streaming Netflix movies on my iPhone to get through the workout. And a few times I went on for 65, 69 and once even 99 minutes. Because I couldn’t tear myself away.
I watched FatHead. Which everyone HAS TO GO WATCH and then come back and discuss with me!
Then I watched DisFIGURED. Which is hands down one of the most emotionally INTENSE movies I have ever seen. Everyone please GO WATCH and then come back and discuss with me!
The last time I started watching a movie, it was so moving and powerful I stopped after 30 minutes then started it up again on the laptop so I could watch “Which Way Home” with Mr. McBody. SO SAD but so… just wow. (yeah, go watch it too!)
It feels like it’s falling into place now. I’m learning – I’m teaching MYSELF – that there is truly no such thing as “not enough time.”
After this post, I decided to start a second #7daychip devoted to improving my blood glucose. One, by testing my blood more often (minimum 2-3x per day) and two, by taking added sugar out of my life. I had been slipping in the candy-drawer arena, and I knew I was just eating “a little something sweet” just a bit too often. It was showing up in much higher BG numbers which I hadn’t really realized since I’d slacked on testing as well.
So now I’m on day 10 of regular blood glucose testing and no sugar. This has not been easy. But it’s been do-able. I am doing it. I can do it. I just put a barrier down between myself and sugar. I say, “This is not for me (for now).” I can’t say Forever, but I say for now. In some ways it’s easier than just eating a “little bit.”
One thing that is helping so much is that in addition to the whole #7daychip “family,” I also have buddies who started their goals on the same day as me. Terri is my 30-minute-exercise buddy (she has her own goal). We greet each other day and encourage each other to add another day to our chip. Often she reminds me what “day” it is. (because it’s easy to lose track!) Jerakah is my blood glucose/no sugar buddy. We are on Day 10 and we are unstoppable.
#30Day Chip, I’m coming for you.

Healthy Steps Giveaway: Nifty Tools for Healthy Eating!

mmm... citrusy water!

I recently had the good fortune of receiving some very nifty tools from the folks over at Healthy Steps. They sent me some cool serving utensils and also a water infuser, to make water taste yummy and interesting. The water infuser is basically a ball that snaps open, allowing you to put in whatever you want. I put it some tangerine and some Meyer lemon and then popped it into a pitcher of ice water. You can also put in cucumber, mint leaves, strawberries – whatever you can think of to give your H20 a hint of flavor.

Pretty much every spa I have ever gone to serves “fancy water.” It just gives it something special. I have no idea why it never occurred to me to do this at home, but the water infuser has now gotten me inspired. We all need to drink a good amount of water and I am probably among the guiltiest for not really doing this enough. Having fresh fancy water could really help me with this goal.

I also received some nifty serving utensils. They are designed to help you serve up the appropriate servings of food. There’s a protein spatula thing that is just about the same size as the ubiquitous “deck of cards” serving for proteins. There’s a biggish scoop for “vegetables” and a mediumish scoop for “starch.” (<<< I actually thought this word was kind of old school) It doesn’t have an amount like “half cup” or “cup” but it’s just a visual reminder – “This is about right.”

I have been given the opportunity to give away TWO (!) sets of these cool kitchen tools to my awesome blog readers. All you have to do is leave a comment for me here – tell me what you’d flavor YOUR water with – and go to Healthy Steps’ Facebook page. “Like” them and then write a post on their page telling them you came from @Foodie McBody’s giveaway on http://www.foodfoodbodybody.com.  A few words about how much you’d love to try their cool tools probably won’t hurt either! Please RT and spread the word!

Copy and paste this to Twitter:  GIVEAWAY on @foodiemcbody’s blog: Nifty Tools for Healthy Eating http://bit.ly/fY2OAX Please RT!

Deadline: April 1, 2011 Good luck!!!!!!!

 

these could be sitting in YOUR kitchen soon!

A #7DayChip is Better Than a Chocolate Chip

photo credit: =-.0= from Flickr

I circled around the idea of the #7daychip challenge for a long time, maybe a month, before jumping in. First, there was that association with AA. Personally, I tried OA a long time ago and 12 step programs just do not work for me. (although I acknowledge that they do work for millions of other people!) I was leery of using a tool that has long been utilized by alcoholics and addicts. For one thing, it’s a lot more straightforward for them. They stay away from alcohol or drugs. (I said straightforward, not EASY) For people dealing with food or health or fitness issues, it’s a lot more complicated. We can’t just STAY AWAY from food. Unless we want to, like, die.

Then there’s the issue of staying away from a particular food. This has always been an unsavory idea for me. I am not a vegetarian or vegan. I am not at all a fan of eliminating entire categories of any food from my repertoire. (more on that later)

Anyway, I watched lots of people getting their beautiful 7-and-30 day chips from Mr. Brad Gansberg and I started getting more curious and maybe a little envious. And y’all know I was kind of struggling.

So 13 days ago, I made the decision to chipify (<<<my word!) my goal of getting at least 30 minutes of exercise in per day. I can’t even describe how it has felt to do this.  I had told myself I was “too busy” and “too stressed” to exercise, and was jamming it all in on the weekends. That wasn’t working so well.

The first week, I started by exercising when I got home in the evening, which meant WHILE my family was eating dinner. I felt like, if I waited till after dinner, I was sunk. It was good in that it got me into the groove. It was bad in that I never saw my family. But on Friday I earned this:


How awesome was that!! I am such a sucker for rewards like this, just like I loved getting stickers and doodads from Weight Watchers. It might be “just” a little star sticker but it is an emblem of a real success. This #7day chip acknowledgement was huge!!

After I realized I had gotten kinda slippy with my diabetes, I decided to start myself on a second chip challenge. On Sunday I decided to start testing my blood regularly again and to lay off the sugar. (not including fruit) It’s amazing how I thought, “oh well, my diabetes is just progressing. I’m just getting worse and this is one of those inevitable things.” Um, NOT. Within a couple of days my levels went right back to normal.

This chip has not been so easy. I keep “forgetting.” In fact the other night I had an epic forget. It was after dinner, when I often like to have something sweet. I’d gotten into the habit of having a Skinny Cow ice cream sandwich or a Weight Watchers bar. I noticed an almost-empy bag of chocolate chips on the counter. I scooped a few into my palm and popped them into my mouth, thinking, oh, this is probably only 1-2 points worth. And then I remembered!

I ran right over to the trash and spit out all the chips. It was such a moment. I did not want those chips to be ruining my chip, you know? I felt such a sense of relief when they were out of my mouth.

So now I am on Day 13 of the 30-minute-exercise chip, and on day 6 of the No-Sugar chip. I feel a billion percent better. I can’t even describe

Will I never eat sugar again? Well, I’m thinking about what my endocrinologist told me last year. She said that if my blood levels were in good control most of the time, then a little brownie now and then (ie maybe once ever week or two) would be OK. But that’s the key. So I am going to go for 30 days and then re-assess the whole thing.

For anybody out there who wants to accomplish a goal of any kind, I so strongly recommend trying the #7daychip. The support is unparalleled really, the community is amazing, and just taking it like that – yeah, one day at a time – really works.

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