Sunday, October 16, 2011

Slow Carb Lifestyle

Inspired by Timothy Ferriss's Four Hour Body, recommended by a friend, I am trying to live a lower-carb lifestyle and marrying it with my organic, know-where-your-food-comes-from philosophy.  The diet itself isn't that difficult - meat and vegetables, no dairy, no sugar, and no white food (that's my only problem - potatoes, pasta, bread, rice - no!).  Six days a week you eat protein, lots of it, with fresh vegetables.  One day a week you get to binge, which to me is so counter to what I've ever read.  I was down 12 pounds the first week, then gained 2 back, but maintained the second week.  Now on week 3.  But I have to admit, the first week, I used starvation, caloric restriction, which is what the sciences all tell you.  But I think they are wrong, and I am going to test Mr. Ferriss's exhaustive personal experiment.  The challenge is protein in the morning.  I like my espresso, double shot made at home with a teaspoon of whole cream (the only dairy I eat, and such a limited amount).  I tried to choke down sausage, pre-cooked by me a few days before, but couldn't.  This morning I thought meatballs and tomato sauce would be perfect, my favorite meal in the world is spaghetti and meatballs, but I can leave out the spaghetti.  I made enough for myself for the next three days. 

So I'm having a dinner party tonight for four special friends and my husband was a challenge to do carb-free, since yesterday was my binge day (and I will admit, I had to purge when I got home - carbs really don't make me feel good - maybe I will learn someday).  Japanese cuisine - with more meat.  Edamame, pickled cucumbers, and little sausage bites (not real tasty to me anymore, since they are so processed) for appetizers, a mushroom-chicken broth soup, fried rice (that I won't eat), and steak, chicken, shrimp, zucchini, onions, and mushrooms sizzled on a skillet on the table, Benihana style, with a soy-ginger sauce.  I'm excited to serve my friends delicious food as we celebrate all that is wonderful in our life.

Stay tuned, if anyone's reading this!, to see how I continue my low-carb lifestyle, even as I hit Vegas in two days!  Bon Appetit!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Four-Hour Workweek

Inspired by Timothy Ferriss's "Four Hour Body," I also bought his "Four Hour Workweek" and read it this weekend.  I have trouble with his concepts.  Perhaps it's because I'm in a service-related field (HR) and don't actually create anything, or sell anything, but I don't see how this model can work for me without compromising my principles to make money.  I keep brainstorming what I really could do to make more money (and I believe I make a very handsome sum right now), but it would be franchising some restaurant I don't believe in, selling stuff I don't think people need, or being an annoying motivational speaker.  How do I reconcile this?  Of course, I could argue that the company I work for now doesn't really serve my beliefs either, but I guess I like to make money, so where does that leave me?

The problem is this.  Yes, I love to travel.  But I also love convenience.  Do I want to sit on a plane for more hours than I work in a day to try to figure out a culture that doesn't have the conveniences I'm used to?  I don't know the answer to that, by the way, I just know it's something I think about.  Vacation time is precious, and I'm not sure I want to spend it navigating the streets of a third-world country, even if it means some seriously cheap beach time.  I love the U.S., despite all our faults.  I'm patriotic, and I think we have a lot of amazing things to see and do within our borders, that don't take me 3 weeks to acclimate, just a quick plane ride, or a tank or two of gas. 

I'm always on the hunt for more money easier.  That won't change, but as far as making enough to finance a permanent retirement, I am not sure that is what I want.  After all, I do go to a job where most of the people there are my friends and family, where I am reinforced for helping people and making them laugh, and where I never have to worry if my paycheck will be in the bank or not.  My husband and I take several really nice, albeit short, trips every year, but we see more of the country that way.  I would argue that I already live a pretty great lifestyle.  I'm not sure there's much to change. 

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Something New Every Day

When something happens to shake your perception of your sheltered life, you start to take inventory of how you are living.  I did, anyway.  Before it was too late. 

2011 has been a year of sheer production for me, work is intense, school is intense, my passion for cooking and eating sustainable food is intense.  But I have learned something.  Stop taking yourself so seriously.  Simple as that.  Love deeply, laugh heartily, and try things you never thought you would.  That's my new outlook on life.  I won't be an HR Director by the time I'm 40.  I could be, I could have been one now, but I made choices that I don't regret, in the pursuit of the quality of life.  I won't have a 4.0 when I get my PhD.  But it doesn't matter.  I have a life that is full of friends, and fun, and things I never thought I'd get to do.  And I'm only 36.  What more is in store for me, I'm ready to find out!

Sunday, October 2, 2011


"Maybe mistakes are what make our fate... without them what would shape our lives? Maybe if we had never veered off course we wouldn't fall in love, have babies, or be who we are. After all, things change, so do cities, people come into your life and they go. But it's comforting to know that the ones you love are always in your heart... and if you're very lucky, a plane ride away."  Carrie Bradshaw

I love this Sex & the City quote.  My best friend lives 3 1/2 hours from me, and it's hard to go through life's up and downs without being in the same city.  We met in 2002, at the hospital where I worked.  She was a clinical pharmacy instructor needing access, I was an HR rep who could grant her the access.  She had a Sex & the City party, and I was the only one who showed up.  We learned that we were the only ones we could rely on, so we started having dinner together regularly.  She helped me through a divorce, a new love, and a new marriage.  I helped her through single-hood, and unfortunately, had moved away when she had the first of two broken hearts.  It's a helpless feeling being so far away from someone you love so dearly.  She's one of the strongest people I know, and certainly the most kind, generous, and deserving of love and happiness.  While I complain about things that really didn't matter, she listens and reassurs me that everything would be okay.  We've been friends for nearly a decade, we haven't had a single fight, not even an argument.  I have many friends, scattered all over the country, but this is one of the best friendships I've ever cultivated.  I wish I could see her more, but she's always in my heart.