Life, Uncategorized

Moving Day

In case you haven’t noticed, I struggle quite a bit with this blog. I think I have severe emotional and mental damage from worrying about its survival. I just get so bored rehashing out my days. You guys don’t care about the mundane events of my day to day life, do you? I didn’t think so.

That being said, you might be interested to learn that I am finally (YES GOD FINALLY) moving out of my parents’ home and into a fabulously located apartment in downtown Portland. If you’re familiar with downtown Portland (and you really should be — it’s so small!), it’s on 12th and Columbia and very near PSU. Here’s the street view I found on Google maps.

Screen Shot 2013-11-06 at 8.49.50 AM

I promise it

Continue reading

Standard
Uncategorized

Mini challenge

When I sat down to write this post, I was everything but inspired. I felt sleepy, over-heated, cranky, and brain dead. The fact that I have been writing for four hours in a hot room – which frankly feels more like an oven – is surprising to me.  Finishing it will be the result of some scant amount of discipline and nothing more. You might say that the process of writing this post is a microcosm example of Michael Phelps’ somewhat lacking preparation before this years’ Olympics! I’m getting the job done, but it’s not my best work. Summer 2012 is kicking my ass.

Okay, maybe comparing Continue reading

Standard
Uncategorized

A few things

I’m not apologizing for not blogging for over two months. Maybe I was doing other stuff! Sometimes you have to take a step back from something for a while! Sometimes people need time to sort their thoughts without feeling obligated to share it all!

…That being said, I’m sorry ONCE AGAIN for neglecting the blog. From now on, let’s just let it be known that when I don’t blog for a while it doesn’t mean that I’m done with NMM, it just means I’m working things out. Now then, there are a few things to be declared: Continue reading

Standard
Uncategorized, Weightloss

A muffin is okay if I have enough points

Let’s skip the whole “I’m sorry, No Moore Muffins, that I ignored you for a whole month and a half” thingy. Because I don’t want to make excuses. But I will throw out a few.

In my absence, I managed to get a job at Bally Total Fitness and then get my hours cut down to diddly squat, move out of the house where I grew up, go on a fabulous trip to Seattle, win football tickets to the Ducks vs. Missouri State, run a 5k in Race For the Cure, and attend my first baby shower. I live and work in Portland now. There, now you’re all caught up.

What I really want to talk about is Continue reading

Standard
Uncategorized

I’m Back.

Hi. How have you been? I know it’s been a long time since I last wrote…

 

Oh look, there I am–not blogging.

 

A couple nights ago, I dreamt that my blog had died. I was routinely surfing the internet when I stumbled upon some generic-looking media site that had created a ranked list of this month’s Top Ten Most Dead Blogs. As if there are documented rankings and varying degrees of dead for blog sites (I Googled it, and it doesn’t exist). A breathless blog sounds like a silly thing to be concerned about in the midst of my slumber, but the truth is that I have been awfully concerned about the direction of No Moore Muffins for quite some time now. It’s part of the reason that I haven’t written in so long! I’ll be the first to admit that my coping strategies have not been topnotch. Running–unless literally–from the problem is clearly not going to solve anything. And neither is procrastinating giving an explanation for as long as I have. For both of these things I am sorry and regretful. And don’t worry, I have been constantly reminded of my neglect. I can’t escape the inquiries–sometimes nagging inquiries–from my readers, friends, fellow journalists, and even near strangers. But I am grateful for the nagging. It has shown me that it doesn’t go unnoticed when I stop writing.

You should know that my absence was only meant to protect you. I wanted to protect all of you from taking useless, and perhaps even detrimental, advice that would have resulted from the confused and deranged state that I have been in since September. It would have been the blind leading the blind, for lack of a better metaphor.

So let me tell you what I have been doing (and not doing) for the last couple months: adjusting to living alone, and consequently, cooking alone.

I have had some challenges with eating right now that I have an entire refrigerator, kitchen, and apartment all to myself. First of all, I’ve discovered that I love being able to use any appliance I want, at any given time, with any given food. It’s Fabulous with a capital ‘F’. I don’t have to wash anyone else’s dishes before I get started (but I might choose to do some of my own), and I don’t have to wait for the stovetop to be free. Most noticeably, I don’t feel obligated to share my meal with anyone. Not. A. One. The upside of this is that I produce lots of leftovers and don’t need to whip-up a new meal every night. The downside to this is that the recipes I generally like to cook usually revolve around some type of carbohydrate. This has often resulted in my scraping the same pan of cheesy-starchy-salty goodness all week.

Another bittersweet luxury is the basic fact that I don’t feel any judgement–positive or negative–by anyone, at any time. This can come in pretty handy when I surge into an ‘I’m-so-fat-and-ugly’ breakdown, and must quickly solve the problem by eating half a box of chocolate-covered pretzels while watching Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami without shame. But, as you can probably imagine, this is also a con. When I had roommates, even if I knew they didn’t care, I always weirdly hoped that they were judging me for going soft on my exercise and eating habits; that they would make a mental note for every time that I ate a few too many tortilla chips and wonder if I was going to gain all the weight back. It’s pretty twisted, and don’t judge me, but I actually thrive under the pressure of my peers’ judgement. I, sadly, relied on that contrived judgement when I couldn’t conjure up my own will to work.

So because I am now starved for that ass-kicking peer pressure that I always used to rely on, I’ve been searching for a new motivator to start my next plan. And actually, if I’m being honest, my plan is already pretty much planned out. I have just been waiting to start until I felt truly inspired. (This is the kind of plan that will need some hardcore inspirational back-up if it’s really going to work.)

Happily, I very recently decided to do a profile story on Molly Wizenberg, the creator of Orangette.  I interviewed her early early this morning. Orangette is an award-winning and very successful food blog that I initially modeled my format and aesthetic for No Moore Muffins after. From Orangette, Molly now has a monthly column for Bon Appetite Magazine, has written a book of essays called A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen. Through it, she also met her husband, and opened a restaurant in Seattle. In doing research for my feature story, I also read her book. It is fabulous, it is funny, and it is a New York Times Bestseller. Oh, and you should read it.

So once again, I have found myself inspired my Molly Wizenberg. Her blog, her book, her writing, and her passion for her topic are all sublime. And this is why I am starting again today and renewing my commitment to No Moore Muffins. I have a gazillion things to try, and many things to write, so be prepared for my content to skyrocket this week and from now on.

Standard
Uncategorized

A new place

Photos by Ryan Mowery

I’ve been putting off blogging for more than a week because I didn’t think I had anything informative or insightful to say. Since my weigh-in, things have gone awry. I drove from Eugene to Seattle and back in two days, which exhausted me to say the least. Since it’s finals week and I am in the process of moving into my own apartment, I have been desperately trying to find some sort of balance between packing, exercising, studying, and relaxing. However, the exercise bit has been the most neglected for the past week.

I did manage to get myself up early for a 2.1-mile run on a pretty (and damp) Seattle trail. While staying in the lovely state of Washington, I did surprisingly well with my food rules. Still, I felt guilty for not working out as diligently as I was the previous week. My aunt Kim, who used to be a female body builder and now settles for daily 6am workouts, assured me that once I was in my own environment again I would get right back into the swing of things. I believe her.

The problem is, I’m still not in my own environment even though I’m back in my own city. Sure, I’m home. But having my belongings in two different places is hardly stable. I am a person, as I’m sure many of you are, who is very affected by their environment. If I’m not comfortable in my environment, I get very anxious, overwhelmed and emotional. So when I’m halfway between two places, it’s difficult to go on as normal, working out everyday and doing workout DVDs in my living room.

Both my house and my apartment are in a state of chaos; neither place is complete. My workout clothes are in boxes, my DVDs are packed, and my schedule is all over the place. With all the packing and moving and cleaning and studying going on, I can barely figure out how to live life as normal, let alone squeeze in an hour of cardio.

And speaking of ‘normal’, my eating habits are anything but normal at this point. Since I haven’t worked out every day this week, I have also needed much less food for energy. I’ve been eating very little during the day and haven’t really had a problem with it. I suppose it balances out the not exercising part. To my surprise, when I weighed myself this morning (Oops!) I found that I have actually lost about 2 pounds since August 3rd. I was rather confused when I discovered this because I have not been working out nearly as much as I should be. Despite my two-pound loss, this is not the way in which I roll.

After I get completely moved in to my new place (my very own new place!), I’ll be able to get back in to my tedious  routine. But until then, I think I’ll just do what I can with the circumstances I have. For instance, I’m going to use all my empty space in my new living room to give Yoga a sincere try. After reading Eat, Pray, Love, I just have to see if it’s right for me. Additionally,  today was grocery shopping day. Now that I’ve filled my empty fridge and cabinets with produce and whole foods, I’ll be cooking my first nutritious meal in my apartment tonight.

This entry marks the transition into a new beginning for me. I’ll be living on my own, and discovering a new part of my individuality. I think Yoga will be a rather appropriate new practice  to take on in such a solitary state. I’m taking a deep breath, and diving in to this new stage of adulthood. Can’t wait to share my lessons with you all.

Here we go!

Standard
Exercise, Uncategorized, Weightloss

Motivation via manipulation

Photos by Ryan Mowery

After more than a month of making unpleasant adjustments to your new fitness plan, you are starting to see obvious differences when you look in the mirror. A standard running distance for you is now a solid 2 miles, but you could probably keep going. Eating only healthy meals and snacking smart isn’t just easy, it’s second nature. You can’t help but agree when your family and friends tilt their heads in admiration as they acknowledge your slimmer shape.

Congratulations! You (like me) have achieved the funnest part about losing weight and getting fit. Let’s bask in it and perpetuate, shall we?

You should really take a moment to fully appreciate that your body and mind have made themselves comfortable in a marvelous and pain-free stage of the plan. At this stage of the game, fear, suffering, and laziness cease to exist. Even better that motivation, confidence and energy have taken their place and seem to be thriving.

I credit my own arrival at this place to my own dedication and ‘can’t stop won’t stop’ attitude.  But I also need to give thanks to all the tricks that got me through the dark place I was in throughout the first couple weeks of June.

I put on a good face, but as expected, June was rough. All I wanted to do was feed myself bad things like tortilla chips and french fries. If we’re being honest here (and I really think we are), there were a small handful of times that I cheated. I’m not proud of myself, but I must own up to this fact in writing. When cheating happens, it’s natural to want to give up on the whole ‘working out thing’ altogether. It can get out of hand. What I’m talking about is this mentality: “well I already messed up this whole day, so I may as well just not workout and start over tomorrow.”

But thankfully, I have plenty of little maneuvers in my bag of tricks that assist me in fooling, forcing, and sometimes guilt tripping myself  into exercising.   They’re not really tricks so much as they are blatant manipulation of the mind. Now I am aware that these tricks probably won’t work for everyone, but they certainly work for me. To develop your own self-motivating tricks, one must have a solid understanding of one’s own mind. Try these ones until you figure out your own tactics.  And when you do, please share them with me!

Vocalize it!

The next time you update your Facebook status or tell someone your plans for the day, make your exercise plans known. Say, “I’m going to the gym,” or “I think I’m going to go for a run.”  This will hold you accountable and reaffirm your plans to exercise while making you believe your own words. You have already decided you are going to workout, and have now made it public knowledge, so you better follow through!

Play dress up

Even if you’re loathing the workout, take the first step and put on your sports bra, workout clothes and tennis shoes. (Sometimes I even set out my clothes ahead of time to persuade me to put it all on. Tricky tricky!) Once you’ve put all this effort into changing your clothes, you will feel far too foolish taking it all off with that pathetic look of failure on your face. Now that you’re in the clothes, working out doesn’t seem like such a huge task, huh? Your brain goes from thinking you might not workout, to thinking that you must be since you’re suddenly strapped into the sports bra.

Wait out the weigh in

Wait a month between weigh-ins. This is one of the best ways to keep you motivated in the long term because you’ll see a bigger amount of pounds come off, and seeing that loss will keep you motivated for the next 30 days. This will, in turn, help you lose even more weight because you’ll stick with it. Eventually, your monthly weight loss will become less drastic, but this just means that you are in better shape, so you need to crank up the intensity on your workout regimen. The best part? You can handle a tough workout because you’re strong and physically fit.

Standard