Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Surprised By Seaweed Snacks

Today was filled with lots and lots of grocery shopping…


First at Oryana, where my mom and I also grabbed some lunch:


I ordered the weekly sandwich special, which was the Cherry Bomb Panini – cherry and cranberry three cheese spread with chicken on 7-grain.



We also split a vegan peanut butter cookie:


After battling all the people at Oryana (Wednesday is Senior Day –> 5% off), we headed to Meijer to finish our shopping and brave the crowds there.


(This picture is so misleading – the store was packed like always.)

I actually enjoy grocery shopping, but I realized today that I really prefer to do it by myself. Don’t get me wrong, I always love to tag along on a trip to the store, but when I’ve got a serious list to tackle I work best alone. Plus, I like to waste a ton of time looking at all the different products on the shelf and slowly browsing every aisle (am I the only one who does this?) and that can be slightly annoying to my shopping buddy.

Before we left to get our shop on, I enjoyed a tasty breakfast:


(My mom brought back the best homemade organic bread that they only sell in Arizona)

and a quality workout that went like this:

  • 25 minutes on the treadmill (this workout, to be exact)
  • Lat pulldowns 3 sets x 15 reps superset with straight-arm pulldowns 3 sets x 15 reps
  • Lateral raises 3 sets x 12 reps superset with front raises 3 sets x 12 reps
  • One-armed rows 3 sets x 12 reps
  • Bent-over barbell rows 3 sets x 12 reps superset with dumbbell overhead press 3 sets x 12 reps

Right now, I can honestly say that my whole body hurts. My chest and my entire abdominal area is sore from yesterday's workout, my glutes are still sore from Monday's leg circuit, and I can already feel today’s workout in my shoulders. Arms day should be fun tomorrow Winking smile.


I can smell a tasty dinner cooking in the kitchen – one of the perks of temporarily living at my parent’s house – and it’s making me hungry. I think I’ll go be the annoying kid who stands around and repeatedly asks “when is dinner going to be ready, Mom?” over and over again, like it’s going to speed the process or something. Hey, I’ll only be able to do this for so long.

Oh! Before I go, I wanted to share this new-to-me “snack” I tried today:


Seaweed snacks have always been on my list of things to try, and I finally grabbed a pack when we were at Oryana today. I’ll be honest: even though I’ve been wanting to try them, I wasn’t really expecting to like them very much. Seriously, nothing about seaweed sounds tasty unless it’s wrapped around imitation crab meat and covered in sticky rice.

Well, I am happy – and surprised – to say that these are actually kind of good.


They are a thin, crispy film and the sesame oil coating really gives them a nice flavor. I could easily finish off a pack of these (guilt free as well – only 60 calories, 2 grams of carbs, and 4 grams of protein (!!) for the whole thing), but I’m not really sure when I would eat them. They would most definitely not fill me up as a snack, and you wouldn’t really eat them with a meal…so I’m not sure.

Anyone else ever tried seaweed snacks? Yay or nay? How do you prefer eating them?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Halfway There

Hey hey, how’s everyone doing tonight? I’m just chilling in Traverse City, watching some Biggest Loser with my dad and waiting to go pick my mom up from the airport in a little bit – she’s been in Arizona with her family for the last couple weeks.


So, another rotation has come and gone! I am officially done with my veterinary rotation in Petoskey and halfway through my final year of pharmacy school. It feels good to have another one in the book. I’m getting closer and closer to being done! Here’s what I’ve got left:

  • August-September: Internal Medicine
  • October: Academic (elective)
  • November: Veterinary Medicine (elective)
  • December: OFF
  • January: Advanced Community
  • February: Specialized Areas of Community Pharmacy (elective)
  • March-April: Ambulatory Care

After I finish my rotations I’ll graduate in May, then I’ll take the NAPLEX (Board exams) and Law Exam, and then (hopefully) I’ll be a licensed pharmacist! It’s so crazy, but so exciting Smile.


This morning, I woke up and hit the gym with chest and abs on my agenda. I did a couple of chest exercises before moving onto this ab routine that Eric wrote for me last night:


I only lasted 45 seconds on the regular plank and 30 seconds on each side plank, but considering the fact that I normally just avoid planks all together, I’d say that’s progress. Actually, core work is something that I typically tend to avoid all together in my workouts, which is not good because having a strong core is important. My abs are already sore (and normally I experience DOMS), which means they’re going to really hurt when I wake up tomorrow!

Post workout breakfast of an egg, toast, and Greek yogurt:


My morning went by so fast. I stayed busy at the vet’s office and before I knew it, it was noon and time for my presentation. The presentation was so laid back and low pressure, which was refreshing. Normally I have to prepare a PowerPoint, dress in my business formal attire, psych myself up for the boatload of questions I’m going to receive, and then survive an evaluation from at least one pharmacist. Today’s presentation was so different – no PowerPoint, dressed in scrubs (my daily uniform on this rotation), only a couple of people to present to, and no nerve racking Q and A session at the end. Why can’t all presentations be like that?

After that was done, I quickly loaded up my car and was on the road for Traverse City in no time. I swung by Oryana for some lunch on my way into town, and the Grilled Veggie Panini caught my eye:


(Side note: anyone else notice that technically the only “vegetables” on the sandwich are the sweet potato and onion? I find it funny because I always think of peppers and tomatoes as vegetables, even they’re they are actually fruits, and avocado’s are just like their own food group. Ha.)


The sandwich was spectacular. So fresh and full of flavor, and an interesting combination (hummus, sweet potato, red pepper, and avocado?); but it worked. It so worked.



I did have plans to go to the gym again after I got home this afternoon, since my ab routine took longer than I thought it would this morning and I didn’t have time to squeeze in any cardio. However, once I walked in the door I realized how totally exhausted I was, and then noticed that the house was completely empty and silent…


It was like God was speaking to me and telling me to nap.

Two hours later…I woke up to my dad coming home from work and wondering if I was alive. It was glorious.

Dinner was awesome chicken salad that I picked up while I was at Oryana


Plus a plate of bread with honey.


Yeah…it happens.


It’s weigh-in time on Biggest Loser! Have a good night Open-mouthed smile.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Running Improvement

First things first: I must give credit where credit is due. Almost immediately after I got last night's post up, my dad made it quite clear that he was a little upset with the fact that I did not acknowledge that he was the one who prepared the fabulous taco bar that we all enjoyed for dinner. He hardly ever cooks and was quite proud of the spread he had set up, so I must apologize for leaving out the little detail that he made it. Thanks for dinner, Dad! Winking smile

Tonight is my last night in Petoskey! I’ll be at my rotation from 8-12 tomorrow morning, then it’s presentation time, then I’m done! Even thought I got quite lonely at times while I’ve been up here, the month really did fly by. Of course, doesn’t time always seem to do that?

I had quite the satisfying breakfast before I left my house this morning:


A toasted whole wheat English muffin with two dippy eggs and a bowl of fruit. It was delicious and filling, but unfortunately my dippy eggs weren’t so dippy…


I’ll be sure not to cook them quite so long next time. I have a feeling you’ll be seeing eggs a lot over the next month; I need a break after so much yogurt, toast, and oatmeal.

When it was time for my lunch break, I popped an Amy’s Pesto Tortellini Bowl in the oven


and promptly plopped down for a quick snooze while it cooked. I didn’t fall asleep until close to midnight last night, which is rough when you have a 5:30 am wake-up call. Normally, I have lights out between 9:30 and 10 – just call me Grandma – so I was seriously dragging this morning. I thought I was going to fall asleep on my drive up north! Luckily my little power nap was just what I needed to give me some energy to get through the rest of the afternoon Smile.

The rest of my day at the vet’s office went by pretty quickly, thanks to my new little friend I made.


This is Bernie, and I was this close to catnapping him when I left today.

He chilled with me while I did some research.


Side note: I’ve decided that I most definitely want a male kitty when I do get pets of my own. They are so much more affectionate than females and are so social and loveable.


Work treats got the best of me this afternoon…


But I (sort of) made up for it with the fantastic workout I got at the gym tonight. I started off by kicking my own butt with this treadmill workout:

  • 2 minute warm-up @ 3.8
  • 1 min @ 5.5
  • 1 min @ 6.0
  • 1 min @ 6.5
  • 1 min @ 7.0
  • repeat the previous four minutes three times, for a total of 16 minutes
  • 7 minute cool-down @ 3.8 and 1.0 incline

I was extremely proud of myself for making it through the entire running portion of this workout without stopping for a break once. At the beginning of the month I was so out of shape that I couldn’t even run for 15 minutes straight at a 5.5 without feeling like I was going to die, so completing this routine made me feel great because I know I’ve improved. Workout induced endorphins rock.

I finished the workout with this leg circuit and some serious stretching.

Jimmy John’s Beach Club Unwich (no tomato or mayo) for a late dinner:


And right now a hot shower is calling my name.

Have a great night and I’ll see tomorrow in Traverse City Smile.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Career Closure

After a very long three days of work, it was awesome to come home to this tonight:


A lovely taco bar with all the toppings: ground chicken, lettuce, avocado, salsa, black olives, shredded cheese, and sour cream. The only thing missing was refried beans – that would have truly taken these tacos over the top.


They were still amazing though. Chicken, salsa, avocado, black olives, and lettuce on whole grain taco shells on mine.


This was the first time I’ve ever had tacos without cheese or sour cream on them. I’m really trying to make healthier choices and was very pleased – and surprised, I’m not gonna lie - with how delicious these tacos were. I actually didn’t even miss the extra toppings, and cut some calories as well. Win.

Other recent meals have included the standard oatmeal


(I might finally be oatmealed-out after five days in a row of the same breakfast)

And packed lunches full of leftovers.


Salad + Thanksgiving leftovers (turkey, zucchini, sweet potato casserole)


Salad + leftover pizza. This was a frozen California Kitchen Thin Crust White pizza, and it was awesome!

Oh, and I’ve also discovered the protein bar of my dreams.

oh yeah bar

Remember when I told you that the Cookie Caramel Crunch Oh Yeah! bars were the only protein bar I liked? Well, I tried the Almond Fudge Brownie flavor the other day and it blew Cookie Caramel Crunch out of the water. I’ve eaten one every day since. It has gooey, delicious chocolate in it, and I seriously would have guessed that it was just a candy bar if I didn’t know any better. Even if you are a die-hard protein bar hater, you should really give these a try. They will change your life Winking smile.

So tomorrow, I have to go back up to Petoskey in the morning to wrap up my veterinary rotation. I’ve got one more full day tomorrow, followed by a half day on Tuesday and a presentation to the staff (I’m doing mine on canine parvovirus). I talked about it a little in this post, but I used to want to be a veterinarian before I changed my mind to pharmacy. Well, I’ve always wondered if I would regret that decision because I kind of made it on a whim.

This rotation has not only taught me a ton about animal pharmacy, but it has also given me some closure on my career choice. I wasn’t expecting it, but being around animals again and observing the doctors made me so happy that I chose the career path that I did. Being a veterinarian is an amazing and rewarding career and I respect them a lot, but it is just not for me. Veterinarians are physicians, surgeons, ophthalmologists, dermatologists, radiologists, and pharmacists all rolled into one, and your patients can’t even talk! Plus, I get sad every time I watch an animal experience any discomfort what-so-ever because I love them so much. Pretty sure that would make me the worst vet on the planet.


I’ll stick to drugs for now Winking smile.

Well, it’s time to get myself organized and maybe do a little reading. I’m calling it an early night!


Have you always known what you wanted to be when you “grew up?”

I never even considered pharmacy until I started college. I realized my heart was not really in veterinary medicine, but I wanted to stay in the health field. I met my friend Elly in my biology class and when she told me that she wanted to go to pharmacy school, it spiked my interest and within a couple of months I was working as a technician at a local pharmacy. The career path just stuck!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Resuming Weekly Weigh-In’s

Ah, another Thanksgiving has come and gone!


Yesterday was filled with family, food, and some very full bellies.



The spread included turkey, cranberry walnut stuffing, cranberry sauce, rolls, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potato casserole, squash, and cheesy zucchini.


I filled my plate with turkey, stuffing, zucchini and sweet potato casserole.


I’m not a fan of mashed potatoes and gravy (I know, I’m crazy) but I was quite impressed with my uncle’s mashed potato mountain that he created.


It was so perfectly formed with a nice little well for his gravy. He doesn’t mess around with his mashed potatoes Smile.

Oh, and it’s not a Berg Thanksgiving if there aren’t six different kinds of desserts to choose from.


I sampled a little of everything, and I also nibbled on a few pumpkin cookies before we sat down for dinner.


I left my aunt’s house stuffed as usual, but I called it quits on eating for the rest of the night when we got home. Normally on holidays, I’m back in the kitchen snacking on leftover sweets a couple of hours after lunch/dinner, even if I’m still full. Last night I decided I didn’t want to go to bed with an uncomfortably full stomach, and that I wanted to wake up energized and ready to hit the gym. Well, the plan worked and I’m happy to report that I busted out a 45 minute cardio session this morning starting with the following treadmill workout and ending with 20 minutes on the Arc Trainer:





3.8 –> 4.0






























3.8 –> 3.5


That incline is killer! I was a sweaty beast when I got off the treadmill.

Post workout breakfast:


Apple cinnamon oatmeal, again.


I don’t think I will ever get sick of it.

Resuming Weekly Weigh-In’s

I’ve decided to start resuming weekly weigh-in’s again on the blog. You all know that I’ve recently been going through an incredibly unmotivated slump and really started slacking on my eating. I’ve been dealing with some personal issues and, not surprisingly, found myself often turning to food when I was upset. However, Ben's recent decision to get back on track and start posting daily weigh-ins has helped inspire me to get back with it as well. Other factors that are motivating me right now:

  • I hate almost every picture that is taken of me. I can see the weight gain in my face as well as my body, and it makes me feel awful to look at.
  • Pants that used to be loose on me are getting tight now, and I absolutely refuse to buy new ones.
  • My muffin top is out of control. Enough said.
  • I don’t feel confident anymore like I used to when I was down 115 pounds.
  • I’m ashamed that I write a weight loss blog and I weigh more now than I did when I started it.
  • I’m not happy. People say that what you look like on the outside doesn’t matter and I do believe this to an extent, but I think it’s important to be happy with the way you look. Someone else may be the exact same height and weight as me and be completely fine with it, and that’s good for them. However, I’m not fine with it and until I’m happy and love myself, how can I expect anyone else to love me?

That being said, here’s your first weigh-in:


180 on the dot. My lowest weight ever was 164.2 back in April, and I haven’t seen a number that low since then. It hovered between 165 and 170 for a few months, then between 170-175 this summer, and somehow five more pounds seemed to creep back on. Time to nip this in the bud now before it gets too out of control again.

Goal #1: Lose thirty pounds, shooting for a loss of 5-10 pounds per month.
Goal #2: Aim for either a loss or no change on the scale at every weigh-in. Gains are not acceptable.

Let’s do this.


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