Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The One Where I Choose To Write

I run.  Those are words to live by.  Words I live by.  I started running seven years ago.  This past weekend is the anniversary of my first 5K.   I ran a 5K this weekend with my niece.  She's in training for a physical in which she needs to run 1.5 miles.  I ran with her this past weekend.  We had fun.

She's the girl who gave me the title Aunt.  I wear it proudly.  She's my sweet girl.

I also Looped The Lake.  White Rock Lake in Dallas is nine miles.   My BFF of 19 years wanted to Loop The Lake by her birthday weekend.   We trained in the summer.  We trained in the heat.  We trained in the humidity.  We ran the lake this past weekend.  Running's my favorite!   Kat and I decided to set our goals for shorter distances, pick up our pace, and lengthen our intervals.  I like to run intervals, it keeps be running uninjured and allows me to run farther.  Yay! 

Our White Rock Lake run was Sunday.   We didn't run Monday.  Rest.  Stretch.  Mostly rest.  

Today we were meeting to begin speed training.  She was unable to make it.  So I ran a mile of intervals and two miles of hill repeats.  Three miles total.

It felt good to push myself.  Hills are my friend! What doesn't 'hill' you makes you stronger!  As long as I'm not rolling down!

I had negative splits! Yay! I wasn't trying for that, it just happened!  Bonus!

Choose to Write.   New Topics. 

What I ran today.  Weekly update on training and mileage.

Food fads.  When possible, the science behind what to know.

Love yourself.  Weekend wrapup. 

What to learn before you learn.  Also known as how this semester is going 

Sunday, August 21, 2016

So Another Fall Semester Begins

Why do I think that things will go normally? Or maybe this is how things go in high speed world of the interwebs.  My first class, an online class begins tomorrow and no information.  None.  No email or syllabus or anything.

I guess I thought that I'd have something before the class starts.  I'm a little frustrated.

It's hard to be a 40-something college student.  There are days I wonder if this is worth it.  The time and effort, the going to class, the studying, the lack of sleep.  Meh.  So I want the initials, the degree bad enough.  

Tomorrow I start basically my sophomore year, except that I don't have the correct amount of credits towards my degree.  The credits I have toward my degree still make me a freshman in my first semester.  (insert embarrassed emoji)

Fall 2016:

English Composition
Elementary Statistics

My goal for this blog is to document my journey.  Classes, classmates, professors and my progress.
Oh and the occasional salsa review, meal plan, recipes, what's working for me and what's not.

Monday, April 4, 2016

The One Where I'm Frustrated

I don't know where to start with this semester.  Last semester I took an online class.  I can say that I don't care for that format.  Essentially I taught myself.  I read the book, I took notes based on information I thought I should know.  I took quizzes and tests.  I made an A.   I can't say I really learned anything.  I couldn't take a test today and tell you what I learned.

This semester I signed up for classes that my Math Study Group would be in and I could take another class in person.   It all worked out.

I don't care for the format of the math class, although I'm doing well, I'd rather have two lecture days instead of the modular math component.  I don't feel as prepared for hight math courses.  I have an A, so I guess I've learned something.

The other class this semester is Community Health.  Today is April 4th and the professor hasn't once lectured over what this class is about.   He called it a hybrid class.

This is the class description:

Emphasis is placed on relating course content to lifestyle to foster a better understanding of the major health issues of today. Current issues include, but are not limited to: emotional health, chemical use and abuse, human sexuality, major diseases, physical fitness, nutrition, aging, death and dying. This course does not satisfy the physical education activity course requirement. (3 Lec.) 

He has not one time discussed: 

Emotional Health
Chemical Use and Abuse
Human Sexuality
Major Diseases
Physical Fitness
Aging, Death or Dying 

I have a total of 9 pages of notes.  Mostly discussing the days we aren't meeting, how to use the quiz function of the Pearson Software, so we can take a quiz over content he hasn't covered. 

I've had online tests and quizzes.
I've had a "pop quiz" over obesity. (in person, on paper)
I've written a paper on cardio vascular disease.
I've given a presentation on Nutrition (Chapter 9). 

I haven't received grades.  He hasn't returned our papers.  He didn't provide us with a syllabus.   From one week to the next I'm not sure what this class is about.

We have 5 - 6 classes remaining.  Oh and a 100 question (in person, on paper) final!  Goody.

Two of the four students that were to give their presentation last week when I gave mine were absent.  So naturally I used their time.  Mainly because this was the only information this class would receive about the the content of the course.  It's not as if the professor has lectured or given us useful knowledge about this class.

After my (well over 5 minute) presentation he said he has one more question.  "Do you know how long five minutes is?"  I said yes, and I used it. 

I'm frustrated with this class, for several reasons.  

1) I wanted to continue to take classes with my study group, so I enrolled again at an out of county college; which means I'm paying over triple the tuition price to attend;  
2)  I haven't learned anything about this subject and it's a class I need for my degree, I'm not taking it for fun!
3)  It has been a waste of my time, I could have taken this class online, for less money and learned more and saved gas.
4) He's not doing the students any favors by his lack of preparation. 
5) He calls me an overachiever because I strive to keep my 4.0 GPA.

Seriously, Frustrated.

Currently looking up classes for summer and fall semesters.  Better check "rate my professor"

In my previous years in college, professors lectured over the actual content of the class, you took notes, you read the book, you participated in class, you learned.   I'm hoping this time around is similar and I've just had two fluke experiences. 

Friday, February 19, 2016

The One About Gluten And Salt and Sugar Oh My!

As it turns out the college has a library!!  When I pass by the library on the way to or from classes what I see is computer stations.  Rows and rows and rows of computers.  I've used study rooms in the library, still didn't see actual books.  

Last week I asked the attendant if they have books and if so where are they?  She directed me to a "back room" dimly lit.  Scary!! 

With a bit of trepidation I walked down the hall into the rows and rows of books.  Not seeing a card catalog or computer to look up a catalog, I roamed the aisles of books.  When it dawned on me, the card catalog is on my phone!!   

Without hesitation I look up "Nutrition" and nearly sprint to the row of books!! Ceiling to floor!! What?!?!  It must have looked like books were flying off the shelf!!!  Text books,  best sellers, books I've wanted to read, books with interesting titles.  I took a stack up to the desk and then asked how many I could check out and how long! 

Here are the titles: 

1. The Gluten Lie by Alan Levinovitz 

I read it in less than a week. Its a really good book about why we still cling to food myths and where they came from.  Very eye opening about science and how it has or hasn't shaped the Western Diet.  The Main Theme is to relax, stop letting headlines dictate your meals.  

A few quotes that stood out: 

For the true believer, the myth will always be more sacred than the evidence. 

Science Fiction is still Fiction.

Anxiety about what you eat can produce precisely the same symptoms linked to gluten sensitivity. 

People will worry that you have an eating disorder if you say 'I'm afraid I'm getting fat,' but they don't bat an eyelash if you say you're Paleo or gluten free. 

You can show the brain any reward - sugar, alcohol, sex, a movie - and it will light up.  That says noting about things being addictive. (regarding "sugar addiction"). 

'Every food is a potential demon...' Talking about food this way is harmful.  It creates neurotic eaters who see foods as pure or impure, natural or processed, good or evil.  

With every so-called superfood, it's always the same story; overhyped, under researched, superstitious nonsense, hidden under scientific rhetoric. 

2. Food Rules. An Eater's Manual by Michael Pollan

I didn't realize I picked this up, I actually intended to check out a different book.  This is a small book; less that 200 pages and is nicely illustrated.   I like this book.  It's simple and funny and talks about food in a sane way.   It's broken up into three sections.   What Should I Eat? (Eat Food)  What Kind Of Food Should I Eat? (Mostly Plants)  How Should I Eat?  (Not Too Much) 

A few quotes that I especially interest me as a dietetic student: 

People who get off the Western Diet see dramatic improvements in their health.  We have good research to suggest that the effects of the Western Diet can be rolled back and relatively quickly.  

Avoid food products that make health claims. 

Avoid foods pretending to be something they aren't.  I.E.  Margarine, non fat cream cheese, artificial sweeteners. 

Eat only foods that have been cooked by humans, rather than corporations. 

Drink Your Spinach Water. 

There is no such thing as a healthy soda. 

Don't eat cereals that change the color of the milk. 

Food is a costly antidepressant. 

I follow a few dietitian blogs: 

Both of these ladies philosophy is to enjoy food, eat well, and relax! Practice mindful eating.  Have a healthy relationship with food.  

3.  The Mindful Diet by Ruth Wolves, Ph.D., Beth Reardon, M.S., R.D., L.D.N. and Tania Hannan. 

Will be reading it this weekend!!  

4. The Industrial Diet.  The Degradation of Food and the Struggle for Healthy Easting.  By Anthony Winson 

5. Whole.  Rethinking the Science of Nutrition.  by T. Collin Campbell, PhD with Howard Jacobson, PhD 

I have two more weeks to read the books!  If I don't get through them, I can add 3 more weeks.  :) 

The One Where I Rub It In!

As promised my dry rub recipe for chicken.  In years past I've used a blend called Southwest Seasoning from Whole Foods.  However it hasn't been offered at my "local" store in several years, so I had to make my own!

I remembered a few of the ingredients and tweaked it until I had it just right, with my own twists of course!

1 Tablespoon Mortons Season All
1 Teaspoon Cumin
1.5 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1 Teaspoon Mrs. Dash Lemon Pepper
1 Teaspoon Mrs. Dash Table Blend Garlic
1/4 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 Teaspoon Dark Roast Coffee Grounds

The cumin and smoked paprika really set this rub off making the chicken have that grilled or liquid smoked flavor.   The surprise ingredients are of course cinnamon and coffee.   I was surprised myself when I read cinnamon on the Southwest Seasoning bottle however it gives it that but of a sweet finish.   The coffee adds to the richness.

I use it on chicken, ribs, pork chops and Chicken Lime Stew.  


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The One Where There Are New Beginnings

It's hard to say where this began really.  Was it when I started running or was it when I began reading labels? Was it when I realized that nutrition has a lot to do with how I feel? It's possible.

April 2009, I received news from my doctor that I needed to clean up my diet and get moving.  I did just that and have continued for nearly seven years.

I've researched how to become a registered dietitian off and on over the years.  I want to help people, inspire people, educate people on nutrition and how important it is to overall health.

After a series of life changing events in 2015 I took the leap.  I took a college entrance exam and enrolled!  EEEEEK!!

I'm on my way to the dream.  To completing a major goal.  To enter the health field as a dietitian.

Dietitian: An expert in prescribing therapeutic nutrition.

This blog will document my journey, challenges, nutrition, recipes and the hilarity of being a forty-something college student in the twenty-first century!