No Food is Taboo!

I can’t count the number of special “diets” I have been on trying to lose weight. I think I have tried them all at one time or another in an attempt to lose weight. And all of them have restricted or totally eliminated certain foods.

Yes, you should monitor the types of foods you eat. Yes, you should monitor the number of calories you eat. And, yes, you should exercise daily. This is not difficult. There are many websites out there in internet land that can help you. I use “MyFitnessPal”. It’s easy for me to plug in the foods I eat and the exercise I do on a daily basis.

Some folks do well and lose weight just counting calories. Some folks do not, me among those. You have to use what works for you.

I prefer a low carb, high protein diet. BUT, I have high cholesterol and am on medication to keep it under control. So how do I do that?

First of all, I am a label reader. Before I buy any kind of processed food, I check the label. Then I ask myself, “Is there another food that is better?” For example: White bread, high in carbs, low in protein. So I substitute with an all grain, high fiber bread which is healthier for me. But that doesn’t mean I can eat bread all day long. It’s still high in carbs. So should I eliminate it altogether? No. It has its place in the scheme of things.

Second, I monitor the types of protein and carbs I eat. We all know that meat is loaded with protein, but is all protein the same? No. Chicken and fish are high in protein, but lower in calories (and cholesterol) than pork and beef. I love eggs, but hate the egg substitute. So I don’t eat eggs everyday. I limit them, but I don’t exclude them from my diet.

Same goes for the carbs. I stick with the lower carb veggies (green veggies) and lower carb fruits. Does that mean I can’t have the higher carb veggies and fruits? No. I can have them, but only in moderation.

The key to any diet then, is to monitor what and how much you eat. Some foods are “free” foods (you can eat as much as you want). Some can only be eaten in moderation. BUT NO FOOD IS TABOO!

Just monitor what you eat. Keep track of it. And don’t forget to exercise!

See you on the good side of healthy.
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Berries in a Basket Socks Free Knitting Pattern

Berries in a Basket Socks

This is an easy pattern to do. Assumption is made that you already know how to knit socks. If not, check previous entries on my blog for more information on knitting socks. There are also numerous how-to videos on Youtube, including grafting the toe using the Kitchner stitch.

Materials:
2 50/60 gram skeins of fingering/sock yarn (I used Deborah Norville’s Serenity sock yarn colorway Chili color #DN104-07)
Set of 5 US#3 double points (it is critical that you use 5 needles so that the pattern will be easy to follow)
Yarn needle for grafting the toe.

Pattern:

Berries:
1. P2 K2 around
2. P2 K2 around
3. K2 P2 around
4. K2 P2 around
Repeat 1-4 above 4 more times (total of 5 times)

Basket:
1. Knit 1 round even
2. K2 P6 around
3. Repeat row 2
4. Repeat row 2
5. Knit 1 round even
6. P4 K2 P6 K2 P2 around
7. Repeat row 6
8. Repeat row 6
Repeat rows 1-8 again.

FYI: Both patterns above work on a multiple of 4.
Gauge: 7 stitches to the inch and about 10 rows to the inch

Cast on 64 stitches using your favorite cast on method and divide evenly over 4 needles (16 stitches on each needle).
Join and K2 P2 around for a total of 10 rounds.

Do Berry pattern.

Then do Basket pattern.

The leg can be increased in length by repeating either of the patterns above or both.

From here to completion of the sock use your preferred method for the heel flap, turning the heel, gusset stitches, foot and toe.

Repeat for second sock.

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I love the colorway of this yarn, but photographing it was a PIA!

Biggest Loser

Do any of you watch the Biggest Loser? I watched this year’s entire season on line. I found it inspiring to say the least.

But realistically, is it healthy? I am happy for the participants. But drastic amounts of weight loss in a short period of time seems grossly unhealthy to me.

I know most of us who are overweight, wake up and go “OMG! I weigh 200+ pounds! This must have happened over night. I HAVE to lose this over night!”

Well, it DID NOT happen over night. It happened gradually, due to the choices we make in our lives. I know some of us work full time and can’t seem to find the time to do what we need to do to be healthy. It is so much easier to grab that bag of chips and candy bar out of the snack machine for lunch, than to actually get something healthy to eat.

So changes in our lifestyle should be gradual too. Pack a healthy lunch for work. Avoid the snack machine. Take a 10 minute walk around your place of employment. Increase your exercise gradually over several weeks, not days.

Add your healthy choices gradually. If done gradually, they will be easier to stick to. Don’t go “gung ho” and try to do an hour of cardio your first day out. You will become discouraged when you find you can’t do it.

We can all become more healthy and fit by taking it slow and easy. We will get there and we will be able to maintain.

Here are some websites you might find interesting.

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/blogs/eat-run/2013/01/23/when-science-met-the-biggest-loser

http://www.diet-blog.com/07/the_biggest_loser_where_are_they_now.php

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Arcadia Mill

Youngest and I visited Arcadia Mill today. It is the site of an old sawmill and textile mill. There is an easy nature trail that is all boardwalk and takes about 15 minutes to complete.

For the more adventurous, there is a ground trail that includes a suspension bridge over a creek, numerous tree roots to use as steps or to trip over, which ever you prefer and some steep boardwalk areas.

Needless to say I was sweating when we got done. And, yes, I did trip over the tree roots.

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Gulf Islands National Seashore – Ft. Pickens

Today we visited Ft. Pickens, part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore. It was a windy but warm day.

A couple of things happened while there. First, when paying to get in, I was able to purchase a lifetime pass for $10 because I’m 62 y/o. Sweet!

Second, I ran into one of my former co-workers. It was great seeing him there.

Now the not so sweet part. Youngest had me going up and down steep steps. At least it wasn’t a wobbly tower.

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Big Lagoon State Park

Youngest and I took a short trip out to Big Lagoon State Park. We walked all over the beach area. It was windy and chilly.

Then he got this screwball idea to climb the tower. He told me I was going with him…up 4 stories in an open air observation tower. I am afraid of heights, but I managed to get to the top, took a few pictures, praying that the swaying tower would let me get down before it toppled over. I was definitely glad to get my feet back on Mother Earth.

Did I tell you I was afraid of heights?

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New Bicycle

Okay….I got a bike.

A little history: I’ve been riding a bike since I was 6 y/o. I am now 62 y/o. Now I haven’t been ON a bike in at least 10 years.

The bike came in today. Youngest put it together. In the last hour, while trying to practice a bit, I have fallen 3 times. Once before I even got on the thing and twice when trying to stop.

Now, I did NOT fall on pavement. I have been practicing in the back yard where there is soft dirt, glorious soft dirt. So no injuries.

Found out my knees are EXTREMELY weak and I’m wearing the WRONG shoes to ride a bike. Also found out the exertion it takes to get started on dirt really makes me winded.

BUT I am NOT giving up! Dang it! I WILL master this!

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UPDATE: For the first time since getting my bike, I rode through my neighborhood for 20 minutes. I did wear my helmet. Gotta protect my old brain.