Day 2: Hope

Posted on June 28, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Week 1 | Tags: , , , , , , , |

So, it’s been about a week since I was officially Athletic, I’ve been intermittently jogging and trying to eat healthy but I haven’t been very strict by any means. I’m back now. Thanks to all of you for understanding. One thing has changed about this experiment though: I’m going to wake up later. This morning I woke up at 8am because a friend of mine from the military took Noah and I at 9 am on one of his routine workouts from the army days.

I made myself Broccoli and goat cheese Egg Scramble
before the workout which I have to say was amazing. This means a lot coming from me because I usually hate scrambled eggs but the broccoli and cheese really made the dish phenomenal. Seriously, this dish was amazing, too bad it had so much cholesterol in it…though I hear that there are “good” and “bad” cholesterols and eggs have the good stuff.

I found a way to make calorie counting really easy. This website that is completely free lets you enter in your own recipes and tack them onto a food log, it then tells you everything you need to know about how balanced your food was for the day. I suggest you take a look; it’s kind of addictive and makes me more motivated to eat healthy and exercise. Go to and by the way, I totally should be getting paid for this plug in but unfortunately I just sincerely like it.


I liked the workout, we started with stretching, then pushups and jumping jacks, and then we jogged for a while. Just when it seemed I couldn’t go any farther we would stop to do some lunges which for a second felt like a reprieve up until I got to jogging right after. It seemed that whenever the run seemed to be too much we would go to the side and do another exercise which really kept me on my toes and was a good way to distract me from being so incredibly tired. I almost made it all the way to the end, and only started lagging behind right before we finished.



After the run we had to walk for a while which was something I hated and was grateful for at the same time. I think if I had just laid down after the jog I would have vomited so it was good we walked even though I was hating it. After the walk we stretched and we would have done some more workouts but I was too tired. Still, I’m pretty glad to try it and we’ll be doing it again tomorrow.

What? Am I supposed to look happy that I have a case of lobster face?


After the workout I felt really invigorated. I understood that energized feeling of wanting to be active as much as possible, and I felt an extra motivation to do more. For lunch I made Garden Vegetable Quiche
which took about 2 hours to make! It was quite a process, something I’ve never really made before so I was up for the challenge.


After everything was mixed I looked at the direction telling me to put it all in a 3-quart baking dish. I looked in the shelf below the oven and there were only 3 baking dishes, none of which were anywhere near 3 quarts. I started to panic a little and found a giant baking pan that I really didn’t want to use. I finally realized I had no other choice and poured it in and added the toppings. When I opened the oven I remembered that the Noah’s family put all the baking dishes in the oven! There was the coveted 3-quart baking dish sandwiched between 400 degree baking pans. It was too late to de-topping the quiche so I just had to accept defeat.


The quiche was alright by my standards. I didn’t add enough cheese and I think the batter could do with some salt, but Noah and his mom liked it, perhaps I just have high standards.


Later that night I went to the gym for some weight training. I hate weight training! I feel this primitive anger whenever I work out and instead of it empowering me it just makes me feel defeated and stressed out. I don’t like being angry. I’ll keep trying at it because I know it’s something I might get used to but I honestly hate it!


I didn’t nearly meet my 1900 calorie goal for the day though I had a generally balanced day nutritionally speaking (except for being very low on carbs). I’m honestly really surprised about how the eating part is such a challenge, and not a challenge in the way I expected! I’ll have to figure out how to eat more, I think I don’t need to be as strict on my diet as I thought I would.

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Garden Vegetable Quiche

Posted on June 28, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Healthy Recipes | Tags: , , , , , |

Making this quiche is a great way to get your protein and vegetables all in one. I intended to put in a cup of goat cheese (which is a cheese I can eat without being lactose intolerant) but couldn’t find any in time so I used cheddar instead. I didn’t use a full cup of cheddar by any means because I wanted to be able to eat the dish without worrying too much but I suggest putting in the full cup. Also, I think the dish would have benefitted if I added maybe a ¼ tsp of salt or so in the egg batter. Overall, it was pretty good, but I have high standards (especially when it comes to others trying the recipe).



Serves 9



  • 1 ½ cups egg substitute
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup soy milk
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 8 oz cottage cheese
  • 4 cups sliced zucchini
  • 2 cups diced raw potatoes
  • 3 tbsp diced onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped green bell sweet peppers
  • ½ lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • ½ cup chopped parsley
  • 2 tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup low fat cheese of your choice, shredded, divided




  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. In a large bowl, beat egg substitute and eggs until fluffy
  3. Stir in milk, flour, and cottage cheese
  4. Sauté zucchini, potatoes, onions, peppers, and mushrooms in pan coated with cooking spray for 5 min
  5. Stir sautéed veggies mixture and parsley into egg mixture
  6. When well combined, pour into a 3-quart baking dish, light coated with cooking spray.
  7. Top with tomato slices and cheese
  8. Bake 35-40 min or until knife inserted in center comes out clean
  9. Allow to stand for 10 min before slicing


Source:”Fix-it and Enjoy-it! Healthy Cookbook” By Phyllis Pellman Good, Page 35

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Broccoli and Cheese Egg Scramble

Posted on June 28, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Healthy Recipes | Tags: , , , , |

This dish is amazing; great with a glass of orange juice!





  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup chopped broccoli florets
  • 1 ½ tablespoons grated goat cheese
  • 1 small potato, cut into small cubes (optional)



  • Whisk together 2 eggs; set aside.
  • Coat a frying pan with olive oil
  • Sauté broccoli florets and potato 2-5 minutes;
  • Add eggs and scramble.
  • Once eggs are cooked, sprinkle with cheese.


UPDATE: Day 3 I added some potato to get more carbs out of the dish. It tasted amazing! I added it to the recipe as an option.



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Taking a break

Posted on June 19, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Other Athletic Posts | Tags: , , , |

When I decided on my weekly schedule for my blog I didn’t consider that I would be having a 2 day break from 1 day of exercise. I felt a little let down from this but I want to stick with the plan and I made the days Friday and Saturday for a reason. I have to admit to you guys: I have friends. Now that school is out I have the time to hang out with friends and party. While I’m inherently an introvert I still enjoy a party every once in a while and if I am required to go to bed at 9 pm every night then I won’t have any friends by the time this experiment is over.


I already suck enough at keeping friends and it’s a blessing that Noah is good at having long term friends so I can tag along. I highly doubt people I know have a problem with me, I just never go out of my way to hang out because I’m scared of calling people. Anyway, what I’m saying is my break days are also potential party/hang out with friends days (which is vital for college graduates on summer vacation). It may be a good idea to have a break day every week for such a constricting personality so that I don’t lose touch with my friends.


These past few days have been pretty hard even though I haven’t been doing much in terms of my experiment, I’m thinking of just tacking on another 2 days because too much crap has happened. On Friday I went to a few parties and today my grandmother died. She was only 59. I’m pretty messed up, I think I’ll still work out tomorrow, it may help me feel happier, I don’t know, but I feel…lost right now.


I was supposed to make a meal plan for the next week but right when I got to my house the morning after the party I had to go to the hospital to say goodbye to grandma. Perhaps after Father’s day I’ll start this up again, I’m not gonna quit, but I didn’t get to commit to this, too much has happened and I don’t want to do it under these conditions. I think I’ll keep jogging, which I need to keep jogging for the mini-marathon I committed to, but the scheduled regiment, the meal plan, I don’t have the drive, the will, and I just need to be myself right now.


I don’t know, and I don’t think I should even post this, my brain isn’t in the right place, I’m sitting here alone in a dark room remembering the past events and I can’t imagine pushing myself this hard right now. Well, I guess we’ll see what happens tomorrow, I might be back, I might not. I don’t plan on quitting altogether, I just don’t know if I should do this right now…or if I can.

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Day 1: Baby Steps

Posted on June 18, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Week 1 | Tags: , , , , , , , |

The night before Day 1 I went to bed at 9pm to make sure to get a full 8 hours of sleep. I dreamt the whole night of the day to come and when the alarm sounded I was surprised to see that I hadn’t even started my experiment yet when in my dreams I had already begun Day 2.


I’m not the most organized or time efficient person in the world and before I started I had scheduled the morning like this:

  • 5:00 AM:
    • Brush teeth
    • Stretch
    • Run
  • 5:30 AM:
    • make breakfast
    • take shower
    • rub down (because of my psoriasis’ recent re-emergence I’ve been rubbing myself down with shea butter)

This really didn’t work as planned and it was 5:30 until I finally got to run.


Running SUCKED! I didn’t make it too far before I had to stop. I was heaving and there was a very sharp pain in my throat. It really was my throat that made the whole thing impossible. There must be something in the air there, or maybe it’s the temperature or the time, but whenever I run near my house I get this excruciating pain in my throat. Later on I was tasting blood in my mouth. I spit but fortunately I didn’t see any blood. I meant to run a mile out but probably only made it half way if that. I was incredibly disappointed with myself and felt like a failure. It seems to be a general pattern that the first day of my experiments feels like an incredible failure.


For breakfast (which started at 6:30, not 5:30) I had Scrambled Egg Whites with Spinach and Orange. It was an interesting recipe I found on a site that seemed to be focused on losing weight, something I didn’t think to consider when I printed it out. It’s hard to focus on health when so such a majority of fitness and health driven books and websites focus on weight loss. I don’t really care about losing weight; if I lost more than 10 pounds I would be underweight!



It’s kind of strange to calorie count and also be on a strict healthy diet but not have the goal to lose weight, and it makes sense that so many health-related books would be focused on weight loss. One cookbook I found that looks incredibly promising is the “Mayo Clinic Cookbook” which has recipes and nutrition facts for meals. It doesn’t seem to have a weight loss agenda, just focused on healthy, balanced eating.


I had the choice between staying at Noah’s house or my house for the month and I decided it would be best to be at his place which is right next to a gym and closer to everything in general. I realized last night that my house had a huge advantage: the food. I needed healthy food, and Noah’s place was stocked with all the processed stuff I should avoid (with almost no fresh veggies or herbs). I knew my house already had the staples needed to make healthy food and thus I wouldn’t have to buy as much which is pretty important seeing as I’m as of late unemployed and already dirt poor.


When I told my mom I would be biking to and from the house she greatly feared for my safety (the roads are really windy with low visibility) and said she’d help with grocery costs so I could stay with Noah. After the run I had to agree that my house is very unforgiving for exercise and general location (pretty much 45 minutes away from anything…when driving!). She offered to help me with groceries (THANK YOU MOM!)!


I spent the rest of the day at the library researching how to calorie count and stuff. I found out I should ingest 1900 calories a day, which actually seemed like too much when I factored in all the food I’d had today. If I were to follow the plan I made initially I would have taken in only 1,280 calories so I decided to stop by a smoothie shop (since I was low on my fruit intake) and get a fruit smoothie which was 230 calories, I had 385 calories left to ingest for the whole day…pretty good for my first day, I thought that would be hard to do!

This should never be my concern for the month!



I was supposed to go to the gym at 4 but I completely forgot. I remember sitting in the library and realizing I set my phone to go off silent at 3:45. I had reminded myself earlier that tomorrow and the day after were rest days, meaning I didn’t have to worry too much about when I got to bed, so I didn’t need to go shopping or prepare the food at 5 since I didn’t have to wake up so early. In my haste to judge my own absentmindedness in already forgetting to stop worrying about making dinner right away, I forgot that I still had to go to the gym at 4, which was why I set the phone on timed silent anyway… God I am so absentminded! But I need to stop getting so down on myself, I’m sure by the end of this experiment my mind will be sharp and clear from all the healthy eating and exercising.

Oh, and here’s my (hypothesized) daily schedule (excluding rest days):

5:00 AM: Wake up, brush teeth, take pills

5:15 AM: Stretch

5:30 AM: run (the times between running and making breakfast are subject to change)

6:15 AM: Make breakfast

6:45 AM: Take shower

7:00 AM: Rub Down

7:15 AM: Record Wellness Calendar

11:00 AM: prepare lunch

4:00 PM: go to gym

5:00PM: Prepare Dinner

5:30 -6:00 PM: Eat Dinner

7:00 PM: Brush teeth, wash face

8:00 PM: Get in bed (read or whatever while in bed, I should just get in bed early in case it takes me forever to fall asleep)

9:00 PM: Sleep


By the way, almost forgot to say what my dinner was (lunch was at a Pho noodle house because Noah needed to be picked up around lunch time and we were both too hungry to drive around and prepare a meal. But dinner was Tofu and Broccoli Stir Fry.
I know, such a cop-out, but I thought I’d start easy, healthy and tasty for my first day. I realized pretty quickly that I can’t simply follow the rules for stir fry, I’m just too used to making it my way. I ended up putting in twice as much broccoli as directed and to make up for it twice as much bok choy. It still turned out great!

Also, my grandma got sick today, I ended up staying up until 4:30 because after I got back from the hospital I couldn’t sleep so Noah and I watched two movies (we would have watched 1 but the first movie was super depressing so we put in a comedy).

Here’s my caloric breakdown for the day:

Breakfast: 168

Salad after breakfast: 56

Lunch: 404

Smoothie after lunch: 230

Dinner: 634 (well, most likely half of that)

So I had around 1492 calories today! Pretty good for the first day…though perhaps my calculations are wrong. I definitely need to do a lot more research on what exactly to do for my diet, it’s incredibly complicated! The way I structure my diet is definitely subject to change!

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Tofu and Broccoli Stir Fry

Posted on June 18, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Healthy Recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

The secret of a good stir-fry is to have all of your ingredients at hand, sliced, chopped, minced, and measured before your begin, so that you can proceed quickly. That way the end result will be vegetables that are crisp and colorful, not soggy or discolored by over-cooking. Start with the longest-cooking ingredient and finish with the bean sprouts and green scallions. Do not add all of the oil at once but as it is needed, a tablespoon at a time. Serve the stir-fry with steamed brown rice.

Serves 4, 634 calories (half of the calories came from the tofu)




  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/2 cup sliced shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded, or 1/2 cup sliced button mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 cup broccoli crowns, stems sliced thinly and florets cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup bok choy, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger root
  • 1 pound firm tofu, drained and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup low-fat, low-salt chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sliced scallions
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper





  • Heat a wok or large heavy skillet over high heat until hot.
  • Add one tablespoon canola oil and stir-fry the mushrooms.
  • Add the sesame oil a bit at a time as you add broccoli, bok choy, garlic, and ginger.
  • Stir-fry the vegetables until they just begin to soften.
  • Add the tofu and stock.
  • Cover and heat through, about one minute.
  • Finally, add the bean sprouts and stir well to heat through.
  • Stir in the soy sauce, scallions, and cilantro.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.



I have to say I had a lot of strategic issues with this dish. I was appalled at the idea of throwing in raw tofu last instead of sautéing it first. I like my tofu cooked and flavorful! Also, I thought it was really strange that the mushrooms should be cooked first instead of the broccoli. Still, it taught me how I might make even better stir fry: cilantro and scallions, a must have next time I make my own stir fry! I’m also really leery of putting vegetable stock in my stir fry because then it becomes less of stir fry and more steamed veggies, but I suppose the original cook was aiming for a lower fat meal than oily stir fry.


Recipe taken from:

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Scrambled Egg Whites with Spinach and Orange

Posted on June 18, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Healthy Recipes | Tags: , , , , , |

With the added flavor of tomato, cayenne and orange, you won’t miss the yolks.

Serves 2, Calories: 85 (not including the whole orange)




  • 6 egg whites
  • 2 tablespoons tomato sauce
  • Nonfat cooking spray
  • 4 ounces fresh spinach, well washed and stems trimmed
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • Grated rind of one orange



  • Beat the egg whites until frothy, and then blend in the tomato sauce.
  • Heat a skillet over a medium flame and spray with cooking spray.
  • Sauté the spinach until it is wilted and there is no liquid in the pan.
  • Pour in the egg whites, season with cayenne pepper and salt, and cook slowly, stirring until thickened.
  • Sprinkle with grated orange rind and serve immediately.


This dish really surprised me. I didn’t have very high expectations for it but it turned out pretty alright. I think if I were to make this again I would add some cilantro to it to add more flavor but the most shocking thing about this dish was that the orange rind, the ingredient I expected the least from really salvaged it. If you’re looking for a low fat breakfast, definitely try this out but if not, keep the yolk!


Recipe taken from:

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Experiment #3: Athletic

Posted on June 16, 2010. Filed under: Athletic, Week 1 | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Fitness and Me

Sometimes I wonder if I was a vegetable in my past life. I love just laying. I love being absolutely still, reading on the couch or surfing the Internet or watching TV. Sometimes I’ll just lay in bed because I dread moving. I’ve been blessed with a fast metabolism and a small build but don’t be fooled. I’m the laziest person I know. My favorite part of the day is either dinner time or bed time. If someone from the future came up to me and told me I would become very fat when I got older I’d say “yeah, I’m well aware of that, you seriously traveled time to tell me??”


I did attempt to work out for a while, and it was great, but also terrible. Running is alright and I can imagine it being fun. Working out (lifting weights, doing crunches etc) I HATE! I don’t know where to begin or where to end. It begins to make me feel incredibly helpless and angry, and then on top of that the straining makes me feel even more helpless. Also, I don’t generally like the idea of working out, I like working for a goal, and if the goal is so intangible as “Well, I’ll look really good in a few weeks!”
then it doesn’t feel like I’m achieving anything short term.


Sports, well, not my thing either, in fact I’d have to say the sports section in the newspaper and ESPN are the places you will never find me focusing one brain cell on. I used to play basketball for 6 years from Kindergarten to 6th grade. They called me “the glue” I was crazy good at defense. I think it was the Asian in me, but I darted left and right like nobody’s business. Still, in the whole 6 years of playing I only made 1 basket, and I rarely would watch my own games. I also used to ride horses passionately until the habit got to be too expensive.


I think what makes the idea of fitness so daunting is also the consistency it requires. I’m not the most consistent person in the world, in fact I abhor routine and the like. No day is ever the same as before. I couldn’t even describe my typical day because there is no typical day. The most consistent thing I do is take my daily thyroid pill in the morning, and what time in the morning is always subjective, so I couldn’t even count that.


So overall, I’d say fitness and especially sports are in a dark dusty corner of my brain…which makes this experiment all the more interesting!


What’s going to happen?

I think I’m going to tackle both fitness and regiment in this month.

  • Everything I can schedule will be scheduled.
  • I will have a wellness calendar stating when I exercised, what I did, and how I felt.
  • I’ll be recording hours of sleep, calorie intake, energy levels, and miles run.
  • Every morning (except Fridays and Saturdays) will begin at 5 AM and end at 9PM.
  • Fridays and Saturdays will be my rest days (it says in the various fitness books that I need to have some rest days in the week).
  • My diet will be very healthy and balanced. I will make sure to post what I’ve eaten, how much, and the nutrition facts.
  • I’ll start my morning with a jog, end the day at the gym, and I’ll try to use my bike to get anywhere and everywhere.
  • When I’m not being active I’ll sit down and watch some ESPN or any other sports channel or I’ll read about fitness/sports online or in a book.
  • I’ll try to do as many sports as possible and attempt to surround myself with other athletic people.


This will most likely be a very difficult month, and I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep up, but Noah has accepted the new role of drill sergeant and will drag me out of bed if need be. There are many different types of athletic people: some do it for the looks, some do it to train for a specific sport, some do it for health, and others do it because they enjoy it. I want to aim for health and try to enjoy it. I want this to consume me, to be my every being.


I expect that I will learn a lot from this month and it will most likely be one of the hardest months, but I’m excited to see just exactly what happens.

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