Tag Archive: walking


Just two more days until my next weigh-in! I’m excited! I spent part of the morning watching videos of Chalene Johnson (Turbo Jam, TurboFire, ChaLEAN Extreme), Brett Hoebel (Biggest Loser, RevAbs), Tony Horton (Power 90, P90X, 10 Minute Trainer), Shaun T (Hip Hop Abs, Insanity) and more leading the Super Workout at Coach Summit in LA which is extremely motivating. Can’t wait for next year in Vegas!

11:00am 12oz water and 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets

12:45pm Breakfast – I have really got to start doing better about eating right after I get up and BEFORE I get on the computer! Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz 1% milk, 1 Tbs. natural peanut butter, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost and 3 ice cubes

3:00pm Snack – 1/2 large cucumber, sliced with 2 Tbs. Trader Joe’s hummus

4:00pm – 12oz water

6:00pm Lunch – 12oz water with 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Smothered chicken burritos. Here’s the “recipe” inspired by Sam the Cooking Guy. Love him!

1. Shred some rotisserie chicken (Costco has the best deal by far) I used 3 oz in my burritos

2. Warm the chicken and enchilada sauce on the stove – I used about 2c. sauce for the whole family – make sure there’s enough sauce so that after you take the chicken out there’s enough to spoon over the burritos

3. Heat tortillas in a dry skillet on medium until soft and pliable, about 20 seconds, flipping halfway through (don’t leave them in the skillet too long or they’ll become hard and difficult to deal with) – I used Mission flour tortillas for the family and whole wheat, low-carb, high fiber tortillas for mine. Let’s compare…200 calories for one regular tortilla or 80 calories and 12g fiber for one of the kind I used. Seems like a no-brainer to me. I had two which were fewer calories than one of the other. Why didn’t I give the same to my family? Because they taste like whole grain and getting them to eat stuff like that is a work in progress. Baby steps.

4. Put warm tortilla on a large plate and sprinkle the center with shredded cheese – I used part-skim mozzarella because that’s what we had. Monterey Jack would be great. I weighed out 2 oz for my whole plate and divided it between the two burritos and top.

5. Top the cheese with some of the shredded chicken. I used a fork and kind of pressed it against the inside of the pan so it wouldn’t be too saucy, leaving some of the sauce for the top.

6. Roll up the tortilla to make a burrito. I fold in the sides first, then fold the bottom up over the filling and continue rolling up.

7. Once you’ve made the burritos, place on each person’s plate, spoon the remaining sauce over the top, sprinkle with shredded cheese and shredded lettuce then top with some sour cream. I used 2 Tbs. and it was the light kind.

8:00pm 12oz water

8:05pm Was feeling really sleepy and knew I was in great danger of slipping into that mental state where I blow off my workout, finding a myriad of ways to rationalize it, so I went out for a walk/run.

9:30pm 12oz water

10:00pm Dinner – 12oz water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz 1% milk, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, a little mint extract and 3 ice cubes

12:30am Snack – 6oz Yoplait Light Blueberry and 10 raw almonds

Total calories consumed – 1343  Total calories burned – 2925

Protein – 116g, Carbs – 145g, Fat – 47g, Fiber – 52g

Water – 72oz

 BONUS – Photos from my walk. Please forgive me for getting so excited about pretty clouds, but when you live in a place that’s overcast 75% of the year seeing some blue sky and clouds that have actual shapes other than “blanket” is a big deal. Once the sun had gone down to the point where taking photos with my not-so-great camera was pointless I decided to try some running intervals again. This time I took the advice of a friend and payed more attention to being light on my heels. It made a huge difference and I found myself going farther each time. Instead of counting steps I looked ahead for a landmark and told myself I could make it…and I did. The last interval was even uphill and I went farther than my goal. Booyah!! LOL

It’s amazing how often we hold ourselves back from accomplishing things because we tell ourselves we can’t. We were watching a fascinating show on the Discovery channel earlier in the day about a man who, if you didn’t know what he was doing and you believed in that stuff, you’d swear was a psychic. He’s actually a professional mentalist and he did share a lot of what he was doing. In one part he was explaining how car salesmen use little “tricks” to get you to think a certain way and do certain things like buying a car you didn’t really want when you went in. He also gave tips on how to counteract what they’re doing so you can get the best deal.

Afterward, I was talking to my kids about how our minds are so pliable…so open to suggestion…and how we can actually use that on ourselves to our advantage. I gave the example of how Chalene Johnson does this in a very unsubtle way in her workout programs. She says things like, “Guess what? You’re not tired!” or “I know you saved some energy for me!” or simply “You can do this!” and you start to believe it. The next thing you know you’re pushing yourself harder than you ever thought you could and you are doing it…just like she said. We can tell ourselves things that will either hinder or help. I know I have been guilty of holding myself back with negative thoughts, but I’m learning just how powerful our thoughts and words really are. It’s a gift from God. We need to exercise our free will and use it to our advantage. We do not have to be victims of our circumstances. We can choose to believe that we are capable of so much more, even if no one around us believes it. If we say we can’t, guess what…we’re right because we won’t even try. We have to say we can, figure out how and do it. It’s 99% mental.

Advertisements

Today started off just fine, but soon after it went horribly wrong. Not to say that everything was bad. Some pretty terrific things happened, actually, but some pretty crappy ones did, too. For quite possibly the first time ever I didn’t respond by turning to food which is a huge step forward. Yay!

7:15am Woke up and got my older son up, too, so he could finish the computer project he worked on until midnight

7:30am Son finished project, removed thumb drive from computer and placed it somewhere in another dimension where it was completely forgotten about until a few mintues before his class started

10:40am Phone rang…it was my son asking me to bring the thumb drive to school

10:45am Called son to ask where he put it because I couldn’t find it anywhere

10:47am Began the complete and utter ransacking of our apartment to find the elusive drive

12:10pm Came to the conclusion that I was not going to find it on my own and left to meet my friend for lunch (the class was over by this point so it didn’t matter what time it was found) – Mongolian grill – chicken and lots of veggies – no noodles or rice, about 36oz water

3:15pm Son came home from school and was instructed to start cleaning his room which was a total disaster even before I began the ransacking

3:30pm Husband got involved and without understanding the situation fully got angry with me for going out to lunch before it was found

3:45pm Full-blown fight began between my husband and I that the whole building probably heard (just verbal, I did not use my awesome kickboxing skills ha ha) – not my proudest moment, but I had had it up to here (imagine me placing my hand horizontally at the top of my forehead) Did find the thumb drive, though. Something must have sucked it back into our world/hallway. Go figure.

7:00pm Stomach stopped churning enough to finally eat something – 2oz angel hair pasta, 1/2 c. Prego Heart Smart sauce, 1 c. green beans with a few mushrooms sauted in olive oil and seasoned with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Felt famished (that’s what I get for going so long without eating) so added a breaded chicken patty I found in the back of the freezer. Definitely tasted a little wonky from being in the freezer so long, but I didn’t really care.

8:00pm Stomach still wasn’t happy, but instead of eating more I went for an hour and a half walk which was my workout for the day. All the drama and stress (not to mention I hadn’t had my Shakeology yet) left me completely exhausted (and it turns out my elevated heart rate during and after the fight did burn some extra calories, though I much prefer accomplishing that with something fun like TurboFire)

9:30pm Came home and put the kids to bed then finally sat down to log in my food and discovered I needed to eat more

10:30pm 1oz angel hair pasta with 1/4 c. sauce (leftover from dinner), Shakeology no-bake cookies made with 1 scoop Chocolate Shakeology, 1 Tbs. honey, 1 Tbs. natural peanut butter, 1 Tbs. skim milk and 2 Tbs. rolled oats (seems the quick oats slipped into that other dimension where the thumb drive went) – didn’t even bother rolling the mixture into balls, just ate it with a spoon…what??

12:30 8oz skim milk

I know I had some other water today besides the three glasses at the restaurant, but I don’t remember how much.

Total calories consumed – approx 1489 (hard to know for sure when you eat out)  Total burned – 3323

Protein – 90g, Carbs – 214g, Fat – 38g, Fiber – 32g

Water – ? Probably not enough

Sorry no food photos today, but here are the ones I took on my walk. It was gorgeous outside and reminded my to keep my head up because things will work out one way or the other if I continue to choose to be happy and not let the obstacles get me down.

Tomorrow is a new day…thank God.

Today was my first weigh-in with surprising results. Have to stay on track now to reach my 2 month goal. Got a bit of a late start with everything, but the extra sleep after I got the kids off to school was just lovely.

2:20pm Breakfast – Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz skim milk, 1/2c frozen blueberries (nice and sweet from Trader Joe’s), 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost and 3 ice cubes. Yep, it was a complete repeat of last night’s, but it was so good I had to have it again. Plus, with the blueberries it has 13g fiber. Love it! Forgot to take my Beachbody Slimming Formula. Ooops.

4:30pm 20oz water

6:30pm Lunch – didn’t mean to go this long without eating, but I got distracted talking to people on facebook – 12oz water, 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets, 2 Trader Joe’s uncured chicken hot dogs, one with a whole grain white bun and one without, and 1 tsp Simply Heinz ketchup (the kind with no high-fructose corn syrup) and 1 tsp brown mustard, 1 green bell pepper and 2 Tbs. Trader Joe’s hummus

8:00pm 20oz water

9:15pm Workout – What I wanted to do today was TurboFire FIRE55EZ and FIRE45EZ (last time I did this combo I burned 1800 calories), BUT the TV was being occupied and my next chance to use it was going to be 12:30am. Fine by me, but considering the reaction I got from the neighbors last time I did that I knew I had to go to plan B. I threw on my husband’s shoes (yes, they’re a bit too big, but much more cushion-y than mine) and headed out for a walk with the intention of doing some running, too. I was out for 45 minutes and during that time I did four sprints where I counted every four steps I took and did thirty at a time (I suppose just saying 120 steps would’ve been easier). It definitely got my heart rate up and I was sweating, but I could’ve done more if it hadn’t been for the pain I was having above my ankles. Not sure if it was just that those are muscles I’m not used to using or if I need different shoes. Ended up burning 460 calories…a far cry from the 1800 I had planned, but better than nothing. Going to really have to push myself tomorrow.

10:00pm 20oz water

12:00pm Snack/Dinner (whatever you want to call it) Torn between wanting to make sure I eat enough and wanting to have an acceptable calorie deficit, I decided to just eat enough to get me to 1200 calories for the day and be done with it. Today did not go at all as I would’ve liked, too long between meals and not doing the workouts I wanted to, so I just tried to make the best of it and remember that tomorrow is a new day. The quesadilla I had yesterday was pretty great and I still had some of the seasoned ground turkey left over so I made another one using two low-carb tortillas, 2oz part-skim mozzarella cheese, 3oz turkey, 3 Tbs pico de gallo and topped it with 2 Tbs light sour cream and 3oz shredded iceberg lettuce. I also ate a serving of imitation crab while I was waiting for the quesadilla to cook. 20oz water with 2 Slimming Formula tablets

Total calories consumed – 1261  Total calories burned – 2823

Protein – 111g, Carbs – 142g, Fat – 43g, Fiber – 45g

Water – 92oz

I was still up at almost 4am and found myself frustrated about something. After much deliberation I turned to food for comfort like I have many, many, many times before. At least this time, because I still had my goal in mind, I chose somewhat healthier foods (as opposed to ice cream, candy and chips) and stopped myself before I had completely undone all the progress I’ve made. Also interesting to note is that this was the first day I hadn’t really worked out since starting this challenge. Sure I had walked for about 40 minutes, but that’s way different from doing ChaLEAN Extreme or TurboFire. Way different.

Early Morning Eating Binge – 8 pieces (yes, 8 more) imitation crab, 2 slices Kraft American cheese, about 5 corn puffs (the white cheddar kind from Trader Joe’s), a sip (maybe more like a gulp) of root beer, and 4 chocolate covered mini-pretzels

1:15pm (yes, you read that right…that’s when I woke up) Breakfast – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz water, 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, 1 tsp instant coffee granules and 3 ice cubes. Also had 12oz water with 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets

4:00pm Snack – 2 c. homemade minestrone soup and 12oz water

6:20pm WORKOUT #1!! ChaLEAN Extreme Burn It Off and TurboFire FIRE55EZ then a short walk around the park while the boys kicked a soccer ball around. Why did I split up my workout? Because my family needed food so I threw together some dinner and baked it while we went outside. 36oz water.

7:45pm Snack/Post-workout – 1 scoop P90X Results & Recovery Formula with 10oz water

8:30pm Lunch (aka Dinner for the rest of the family) – 12oz. water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, 4 c. shredded romaine lettuce with dressing made from 1 Tbs. Hidden Valley Ranch dressing, 1 Tbs. light sour cream, 2 tsp skim milk and a pinch of chipotle seasoning. It’s from Knorr and comes in little cubes.1/8 of the Veggie and Cheese enchilada casserole thing I made from scratch. The plan was to make actual enchiladas, but this was much easier and faster. Here’s the recipe. The veggies I used were just what I had in the fridge. I think this would be very forgiving and you could use lots of different combos. It could also be great with green sauce.

2 c. red enchilada sauce

10 corn tortillas

1 Tbs. olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 zucchini, diced

1 broccoli crown, chopped

1 c. frozen corn

1 serving frozen sweet potato fries (84g)

8oz shredded cheese (I used part-skim mozzarella because that’s what I had, but low-fat Monterey Jack or cheddar would be good, too.)

salt, chili powder and garlic powder to taste

Pre-heat oven to 350. Spray 9×13 pan with Pam.

1. Heat large skillet to medium-high and add olive oil.

2. Add veggies, salt, chili powder and garlic powder (or fresh if you’re not lazy or in a big hurry like I was).

3. Cook veggie mixture until crisp-tender and a little browned. Meanwhile, start prepping the pan with enchilada sauce and half the tortillas by spreading 1/3 c. sauce in the bottom and covering with tortillas then another 1/3 c. sauce.

Nope, I didn’t heat the tortillas or coat them in sauce. Just put them in straight from the fridge. Easy.

4. Spread the veggie mixture evenly over the bottom layer of tortillas. I was trying to keep the calories low and didn’t want a bunch of tortillas so I just did one layer.

5. Cover the veggies with about 6oz of the shredded cheese. Save the rest for the top.

6. Cover with remaining 5 tortillas, the rest of the sauce and sprinkle with cheese.

7.  Bake uncovered at 350 for about 30 minutes or until heated through. Mine stayed in the oven about 40 minutes because we were outside and the veggies ended up a little softer than I would’ve liked, but it was still good. If I had green onions and/or cilantro I would’ve sprinkled them over the top before serving for sure.

Each serving (1/8 of pan) had 11g protein, 29g carbs, 7g fat, 4g fiber and 215 calories.

10:15pm WORKOUT #2 – ChaLEAN Extreme Ab Burner (10 min.) and Recharge (20 min. stretch/yoga)

11:00pm Dinner – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz skim milk (organic as always), 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, a few drops mint extract and 4 ice cubes – tasted just like mint chocolate chip ice cream 🙂 12oz water and the last 2 Slimming Formula tablets

1:43am (now) – Celestial Seasonings Raspberry Zinger tea with stevia already in the bag – 10oz

Total calories consumed – 1517  Total calories burned – 3530

Protein – 99g, Carbs – 200g, Fat – 41g, Fiber – 41g

Water – 100oz

Today could have been a total disaster or at least a wash with the extra calories from my early morning mishap, but by incorporating lots of veggies into the rest of the day I stayed full and kept the calories right where I wanted them. Yay veggies!!

Today was a rest day from my intense workout schedule, but I still wanted to do something so I took a little walk around the neighborhood. It’s was great to be outside and take some new photos since it’s been a while. I’ve been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the honeysuckle blooms. I finally saw signs of progress and could smell just a hint of their intoxicating aroma as I was right next to them. Soon the air will be filled with their perfume. I can hardly wait!

Normally I would cross the street and head over past Autzen Stadium (GO DUCKS!) to Alton Baker Park, but I turned around to go home and see what the kids were up to. I hung out with them at the basketball court for a while where the older one was shooting hoops with a friend and the younger one was riding his brother’s scooter. As I stood there watching him we both learned a little lesson. While it’s important to look ahead at the big picture, be careful of the little things along the way because ignoring them can really trip you up.

Once I was sure he was ok, I took that photo of the tiny pebble that caused him to go sprawling on the ground. He survived with no major injuries and hopped back on which of course made me proud. I took one more photo and then attempted to sink some shots with my other son. It was definitely an off day for me, but that’s ok because we had a good laugh which I think is much more important than showing off my skills. 😉

Ack!! I’ve fallen way behind on posting my journal. Not that I haven’t been keeping one. I’ve been doing my tracking over on the BodyBugg site. I doubt if I’ll remember all the times for everything so I’m not even going to try to list them, but here are the last three days.

6/8/11

Breakfast – a toasted whole wheat pita pocket stuffed with scrambled eggs (1 whole and 2 whites), 2 slices turkey bacon and 1 slice of tomato (I really hate that my camera is so bad at taking close-up shots)

Snack – 1 1/2 c. broccoli, 2 Tbs Toby’s Lite Jalapeno Tofu spread (YUMM!!!), 1 wedge Laughing Cow Light cheese, 1 whole tomato plus the rest of the one I took the slice from for breakfast and 2 Tbs fat-free Italian dressing

Lunch – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz water, 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, 1 Tbs almond butter and 3 ice cubes

Snack – P90X Cafe Mocha protein bar

Workout – ChaLEAN Extreme Push Circuit 3, TurboFire FIRE45, FIRE30 and Stretch10. Got started really late and the neighbors actually banged on the wall (or ceiling…not sure if it was the people next to or below us) around 11:30pm so I had to finish all my TurboFire low-impact. It really wasn’t that easy to do because I was full of energy and am used to putting as much bounce in my step as possible.

During/post-workout – 1 scoop (half serving) P90X Results & Recovery Formula

Dinner – which was actually at about 1:30am or so – The plan was to have another Shakeology, but I was afraid to push it any further with the neighbors. I figured if I used the blender they’d be knocking on my door for sure. Instead, I had a turkey wrap made with a low-carb whole wheat tortilla, 3 slices turkey (about 1 oz each), 1 tsp brown mustard, and a big handful of iceberg lettuce. Also had 3 turkey sausage links because I opened a package for my husband and didn’t feel like wrapping up the three that were left. Plus, I needed some more protein and was fine on calories.

Total calories consumed – 1378        Total calories burned – 2297 (I counted all the calories I ate before I went to bed, but the calories burned only goes up to midnight because that’s how the bodybugg works)

Protein – 113g, Carbs – 145g, Fat – 45g, Fiber – 35g

Water – honestly can’t remember now, but at least 70oz (completely forgot to take the Slimming Formula all day…ooops)

6/9/11

Breakfast – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz skim milk, a scoop of Shakeology fiber boost, 3 ice cubes and a few drops of raspberry flavoring – reminded me of those delightful Ghirardelli raspberry squares

Workout – TurboFire FIRE55EZ and FIRE45EZ (burned over 1800 calories doing these and had SO MUCH FUN!)

Snack – actually had this while working out – a scoop (half serving) P90X Results & Recovery Formula

Lunch – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz water, 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, 1 Tbs natural peanut butter, 3 ice cubes

Dinner – which ended up being about 3 hours after lunch – burrito made with a large flour tortilla (probably would’ve been better to use a whole wheat one, but I really wanted the “bad” kind ha ha…was it worth it? not really), 4oz cooked ground turkey that was seasoned with taco seasoning, a little shredded iceberg lettuce, 1 Tbs light sour cream and 2 Tbs pico de gallo with a lettuce and tomato salad topped with 2 Tbs Trader Joe’s low fat cilantro dressing

Snack – 10 raw almonds and 6oz Yoplait Light Harvest Peach yogurt

Total calories consumed – 1454    Total calories burned (including the end of my workout from the night before) – 4398

Protein – 104g, Carbs – 166g, Fat – 44g, Fiber – 28g

Water – at least 100oz and I’m pretty sure I remembered to take all 6 Slimming Formula tablets

6/10/11

Breakfast – Oatmeal made with 1/2 c. dry rolled oats, 1/4 c. skim milk, 10 almonds, chopped, 1 Tbs. blueberry flavored Craisins, 2 tsp. pure maple syrup and a pinch of salt – I’m trying to rotate which meals I have Shakeology for so I don’t get bored with the same routine, but I have to say I always feel much better after having Shakeology for breakfast that anything else. I know that having a good amount of protein or fiber is supposed to be ideal, but it’s still not the same. Nothing gives me the same amount of sustained energy that Shakeology does.

Snack – 1 large cucumber, sliced dipped in 1 Tbs. Hidden Valley Original Ranch dressing mixed with 1 Tbs. light sour cream and a dash of black pepper (I’m not a fan of light or fat-free ranch dressing so I like to mix the original with light sour cream to cut down on fat and calories without getting that weird “light” taste)

Lunch – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz water, 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, 3 maraschino cherries and 3 ice cubes

Snack – 2 Trader Joe’s uncured chicken hot dogs (no preservatives, nitrates, etc.) with 1 tsp. brown mustard

Dinner – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz skim milk, 1 Tbs. almond butter, 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, a few drops of coconut extract and 3 ice cubes – Almond Joy anyone?

Snack – 14 pieces imitation crab (the chunk kind – yes, I love it…right out of the package) and 1 orange

Total calories consumed – 1348  Total calories burned – 2868 (didn’t actually workout because I felt my body needed a rest, but I did walk for about 40 minutes and played a little basketball with my son for a few minutes)

Protein – 99g, Carbs – 168g, Fat – 38g, Fiber – 33g

Water – at least 80oz and I remembered all 6 Slimming Formula tablets

I’m feeling great about how I’m doing so far and can see real changes in my body. Can’t wait until I weigh again to see how close to my goal I am for this week!

After noticing yesterday that I tended to reach for more calorie-dense foods at night out of habit I was determined to make an effort to fill up on more veggies. I did better, although there’s still some room for improvement. One big step in the right direction was having the burger patty with just A-1 sauce instead of putting it on a 180 calorie bun. Yay for me!

1 “Cutie” mandarin orange – 35

1 angus beef patty with 1 Tbs A-1 sauce – 215

1 roma tomato and 1 large cucumber with 1 Tbs Wishbone dressing – 90

1/4 bean and cheese quesadilla – 150

1/2 oz tortilla chips – 70

9oz edamame including pods – 150

whole wheat and turkey and cheese – 200

p90x Cafe Mocha protein bar – 250

Once I went to bed at 4am and then got back up a little after 7am, I threw my whole schedule off by venturing out for a walk instead of going back to bed. When I returned I posted 55 of the photos I took. It was a gorgeous day and I just had to share. As soon as I got back from the walk I had some Shakeology which was a great start, but the weird schedule really threw me off.

Breakfast – Chocolate Shakeology, Bananas Foster Recipe:  6oz water, 4oz Silk Vanilla soy milk, 1 scoop chocolate Shakeology, 1/2 large ripe banana, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4-1/2 tsp rum extract (didn’t measure), 1 scoop Fiber Boost, 4 ice cubes. – 275

I was in the zone posting all those photos and completely forgot to eat. When I was done I was HUNGRY (and tired which always makes hunger feel 10x worse) so I started grabbing food. My husband also came home hungry (it was about 3:30pm by this point) so I made food for both of us.

Lunch + whatever I shoved in my mouth while making lunch – 1 slice whole wheat bread and 1/4 c. hummus – 210

2 slices American cheese – 120

Yakisoba noodles with chicken, green beans and sauce – 350

Another burger patty, but this time I did eat the stupid bun which wasn’t that good and definitely NOT worth the extra calories and another slice of cheese with ketchup and mustard – 550 ugh!!!

Dinner – I decided to just have another Shakeology because I knew I needed something a lot healthier than what I’d been eating. This time I made a Mocha recipe because even though I don’t normally drink coffee I knew I needed to get some more things done and I was really feeling the lack of sleep. Plus, it was quite warm and I just wanted something cold and refreshing. It definitely hit the spot and gave me the energy I needed to deal with the rest of my day/night. I used 8oz Silk Vanilla soy milk, 1 scoop Chocolate Shakeology, 1 rounded tsp instant coffee, 1 scoop Fiber Boost and 5 ice cubes – 275 and delightful!

Total calories – a whopping 2940!! Yikes! Good thing I took that nice, long walk which burned around 800-900 calories so I probably broke even for the 24 hour period. Just goes to show how much easier it is to eat right when you get enough sleep, plan ahead, and eat every few hours instead of going for long periods of time between meals. Well, tomorrow is another day!

With only three hours of sleep last night, I decided to go for a walk. I was tired and would normally crawl back in bed (ah, the joys of working from home), but nature was calling…in the sense that it was unbelievably gorgeous and begging to be photographed. Who was I to say no? And I am so glad I went. Not just because it was rejuvenating to be out in the sunshine and fresh air, but because I made a new, unexpected friend. If there’s one thing I learned while out walking today, it’s that you should never get too comfortable with how you see the world around you. Someone or something could surprise you and shake up the way you think at any time if you’re paying attention.

First of all, this van parked at Autzen Stadium cracked me up.

Then I saw some “wildlife”.

And of course, “the tree”.

Most of the time I look up to find interesting things to photograph, but today down was interesting, too. I couldn’t believe how clear the water looked.

Normally, I would head out to the North Bank path, but something caught my eye so I went in a slightly different direction.

I was loving how some of the leaves were a shiny silver, reflecting the sunlight.

Of course I couldn’t help taking lots of pictures of interesting trees…

…and flowers…

…and birds.

I made it over to the main section of Alton Baker park where there were even more flowers blooming than the last time I was there. Especially in the garden area.

As I headed back, I passed by the “triplets”. When I walked through here in winter when they had no leaves I wondered what they would look like in the spring. I think they turned out pretty great.

It was at this point that my walk got really interesting. While I was standing there taking that last photo I saw a squirrel out of the corner of my eye scampering up the tree to my left. I thought the tree was pretty so I took a photo. It was then that I realized the squirrel was watching me from one of the lower branches.

I waited a few seconds thinking for sure he would be scared off by the camera noise, but no. He stood his ground so I kept getting closer taking more and more pictures. Part of me was a little concerned that he was going to pounce on me at any second and infect me with rabies, but I couldn’t bring myself to stop. I’m posting all of the photos so you can understand just how long we were there staring at each other. Keep in mind there was at least a 10 second delay between photos and I didn’t zoom in or crop them. I was easily less than 5 feet away from him when we were closest to each other.

I looked away for a moment and noticed that the ground looked interesting there, too. I was certain that the squirrel would run away once I broke his gaze, but he was still there just watching me.

Finally, he (or she I suppose) decided to move. Possibly so I could get his other side.

By this point my heart rate had gone down and I figured I should move on. There was no telling how long we were going to stand there staring at each other so I said goodbye, let him know he was going to be famous (there wasn’t anyone else around to think I was crazy talking to a squirrel), and headed home…taking a “few” more pictures along the way. Just a few steps past the tree were two geese, one of which could’ve been a little nicer like the squirrel. It hissed at me several times as I walked by. Other than that, it was a fantastic walk and experience!

It’s been a while since I’ve gone out, taken photos and actually posted them. Today was absolutely gorgeous and one of my best friends and I took advantage of it with a 2 hour walk. If we count Brodie, her sweet and adorable pit bull, we were an official walking group. Of course, I had to take a picture of “the tree”, which will never really change because it’s dead, but everything around it is constantly changing. If you look back over previous posts you’ll see what I mean. One of the things I love most about walking with friends is that we get to catch up on everything going on in our lives. Sometimes it’s the best kind of group therapy. And everything seems better when you’re out on a perfect day. Bright sunshine, blue skies, fresh air and a cool breeze make it difficult to hang onto stress. 

As we arrived at Alton Baker Park, I was pleasantly surprised by all the plants and trees exploding with color.

As we continued past the park and along the river we talked about how people tend to assume that others will react to situations the same way they would. Well you know what they say about what happens when we assume. It’s not good. Ha ha! Seriously though, relationships are truly the most important thing  in life and sadly we’ve all put strain on them by making assumptions about others based on what we would do, even our relationship with God. If we can pay a little closer attention to how we’re seeing a situation and open up communication we can save a lot of heartache from happening. Forget about what you would do and find out what they would do. It’s not hard, just ask.

Brodie was looking thirsty so we stopped at a bench and they headed down to the bank while I took more photos.

And then we headed back. Poor Brodie’s feet were starting to hurt and we a long way to go.

Almost back to where we started. Looking forward to our next “group session”. 🙂