April 22, 2009

Nutrition Journey 3/9/09-today

Filed under: food,health,technology — origamifreak @ 12:40 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

SparkPeople lets you see all your daily nutrition comments in one place.  I found it interesting to see the different phases I’ve moved through in just the past month, starting with trying to figure out how to organize breakfasts at work through this week’s trials fitting in those high-calorie creatine supplements during the “loading” phase.

P.S.  If anyone is wondering why I’m whining about this creatine supplement caloric load, just look at the breakdown by food from 4/23:


At 44.4% of my calories, two doses of that supplement is nearly HALF of my daily intake – and mostly simple sugars, at that!  😐

I have copied the nutrition comments here, for our mutual amusement:

849 Calories
Tonight inventory the greens (spinach) and see if they’re edible for lunches.

Maybe get more at the store on the way home.

Bring yoghurt to work in little containers. With berries.

1,024 Calories
Gee, I never noticed before, just how SALTY the string cheese is… I’m not sure I like that. Maybe next time I go to the store I’ll hunt for one with less sodium.

It’s not that the sodium is terribly high (220mg for 1 stick), it’s just that the flavor is really salty.

1,836 Calories
13:30 Wow. An hour after lunch, and I still feel stuffed. I can’t believe that 6 cups of fresh spinach only has 4 grams of fiber, though. I mean, that was a LOT of leaves!

15:00 Still pretty full. That lunch definitely lasted. I want more of those spicy & tangy almonds, though. They were good yesterday, and I finished them, so there weren’t any for today. I miss having a Trader Joes. 😦

1,063 Calories
Waaay too much sodium yesterday.

Also, I’ve noticed that if I go out to eat for a meal, I tend to eat twice as much on average that day (about 900 calories more).

It’s just really hard to make good food choices when there are either bad choices available and/or very limited choices.

There’s No Way I can eat within the range of calories they’ve set for me (1,810 – 2,160) and lose weight. My metabolism doesn’t work that fast. If I don’t stay between 800 and 1000 calories per day I will maintain or gain. Even with the cardio and weights.

1,533 Calories
Oh dear. Breakfast ran right through me. Must have been too much milk. I’ll have to stick with yoghurt and cereal, I guess. 😦

Tonight I’m having corned beef with carrots and brussels sprouts and onions and rutabaga. I’ll be making Irish soda bread with currants, and fruit for dessert.

781 Calories
I prefer the weekdays for the eating. It’s easier to stick to a routine.
2,402 Calories
Finished the yoghurt today. Need to get more.

Forgot to make sure I had a knife to slice the meat into bits. Desk scissors worked admirably.

Keep forgetting to bring in a big bowl for my salad. Need to do that tomorrow. Today I used the meat Tupperware. I would have liked to have more spinach at lunch, but it wouldn’t fit!

1,197 Calories
3pm: Urgh. I’m really really really full from lunch. That might have been too much spinach and almonds. It feels like a LOT of fiber…
1,627 Calories
MMM. The Weight Watcher’s light string cheese is MUCH less salty than the Polly-O cheese. We have a winner.

Steve brought in muffins. I wish I’d just had half, as Dawn suggested later. Good strategy to remember.

1,129 Calories
Gee. I noticed I was feeling fatigued on the elliptical today, and when I logged it, SP told me to update my calories burned per week. So it was right.

So I did, and I noticed that it changed my self-set protein goals. Which, for the record, are 90-225g/day. This is based on the weight training.

It will be a big challenge to get that much. I did pick up my specially-ordered lite firm tofu, and I’ve ordered whey from Amazon.

Guess that tofu will be going faster than I thought…

818 Calories
1pm Urgh. I feel stuffed. Tried to get a bunch of protein into my lunch, because there was hardly any for breakfast.

Tomorrow I need to bring the Kashi golean in to work so I’ll have it here to eat. I forgot to bring some, and so got a late start on pounding the protein.

2:56pm Still uncomfortably full. Urgh.

3:30pm Ugh. Still uncomfortable. I have GOT to find another way to push proteins inside me, and it cannot involve eating an entire package of firm tofu in one sitting. I never want to eat… again.

4:30pm Urgh. STILL stuffed. Having trouble drinking all my water. Theres. No. Room.

1,793 Calories
11:15am OK, loading my day up front with protein. Eggs at McDonald’s while meeting with the contractor, Golean with yoghurt at 11am. Got 40 grams in before lunch.

We’ll see how this goes.

1:22pm Yeah. Much better. Had room for 5 nice grilled sea scallops with field greens and viniagrette for lunch. As of now I’ve got almost 60g of protein in me now.

30 more, and I’ll get my 90 for the day. Once the whey arrives (tomorrow?), I’ll be able to get that much just in my post-lifting shake, alone. That will simplify things considerably.

2:30pm a string cheese, worth a measly 6g

3pm Shoved 2oz of turkey down my throat. Now only 15g to go.

1,459 Calories
3:35pm only 5 more grams of protein to go, for my minimum. It helped, having a whole salad with the 1lb of tofu. Maybe Monday’s problem was in having mostly JUST tofu? Maybe the things I had were all just to acidic? (2 oranges, salad dressing, tofu)

The whey is supposed to arrive today. That will make getting protein easier.

9:50pm OMG, that whey tastes awesome! I don’t know what people complain about. MMMMM. (It’s Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard double chocolate flavor.)

1,176 Calories
My trainer says I need to have about 20g of protein every couple of hours; that I can’t absorb more than 20g per hour, and any extra will go straight to fat.

I guess I could bring some of that whey to work and mix it with shelf milk, or water, or something. Although I seem to be managing pretty well at the moment.

Oh humpf. That Schwans soup has over 1000mg of sodium in ONE CUP! 😮

2,363 Calories
10:20am Tried the whey as hot chocolate: 1/2 serving (35cc) = 2.3 T. Mixed it in hot water. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t as good as when mixed with cold milk. A lot seemed to stick on the sides of the mug, so I’m not sure if I got most of it into me. The up side is that it’s 12g protein, 1g carb, and that’s all. I’ll have some mint tea next in the same mug. That should wash the rest of it off the sides.

1:33pm I think I found the sweet spot for tofu amounts. Half a block is perfect. Can I just say how much I love my yummy spinach salads with almonds and tofu? MMMM. Crunchy and healthy and they fill me up without making me uncomfortable. And they last a while. I had mine around 2 hours ago, and just now started thinking about food again, but not in a desperate way.

2:09pm Tried the whey in cold water, this time. At least it didn’t coagulate the way it did in the warm water. Still not optimal, though. I like the milkshakes best.

4:24pm Yessir, this whey sure makes it easier to get all my protein. In little doses throughout the day. I’m getting used to how it tastes in water.

11:05pm Yikes. I came home and gorged on corned beef and half and half. This would not have happened if I’d had time tonight to work out. Or if that stuff wasn’t in my house to start with.

Just goes to show that I’m dependent on my schedule for this regime to work.

It’ll take days to work that crap back off. 😦 It tasted good, though.

891 Calories
4:15pm I’m not even hungry, now. I think I’ll just skip food for the rest of the day.

9:15pm Did more weight lifting, had some protein and some fruit

2,410 Calories
11:40am Crap. I really want to go to Parker’s for their Greek salad with grilled tuna and fat free vinaigrette. For some reason I just really would prefer that to eating a salad I make, today. But no-one will come out with me. And the only place any of them say they want to go is the faculty dining room at Hobart which is a buffet. And I’m not going there at the moment because whenever I do, I end up eating twice as much as usual – FOR THE WHOLE DAY.

Humph. As the song goes, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you can get what you need.”

(Which is a nice spinach salad that I will make. With half a block of tofu, and almonds, and some Wishbone spritzer for dressing.)

(And I would like that on a bumper sticker, please.)

11:53am Humph. I guess I better go make that salad.

That %$@! Schwans Chicken Tortilla Soup has way too much sodium in it. I just went on their website and left a review telling them so. I won’t be buying it again.

10pm Yikes. I was Hongry, and gorged again at night. That is the last time. Note to self: lock kitchen, or something. Or just have a protein shake.

2,069 Calories
3:45pm Urgh. That was too much food for lunch.
2,816 Calories
Urgh. I was so sick I threw up when I got home tonight.
3,556 Calories
Ugh. I definitely have the pre-period munchies. Help!
1,438 Calories
God, how I love sashimi. The sushi counter guy at the Corning Wegmans was very obliging. That was a yummy and nutritious lunch!
1,745 Calories
In addition to the whey we’re going to start taking a creatine formula.

Fitness buddy warned me of the constipation effects so I baked a batch of Rose’s high fiber whole-orange muffins. I just love the step where you toss the orange wedges in the blender with their skin and everything.

423 Calories
Wow, it’s really hard to judge how much to eat, sometimes. After the yoghurt and cereal I was still hungry for protein. So I had 2 WW string cheeses. And now am uncomfortably full.

What to do differently next time I feel this way:

1) Set a timer and wait 10 minutes to see if I’m still hungry
2) Eat ONE string cheese and wait another 10 minutes

And a pre-emptive note: Don’t wait until 2pm to eat breakfast – that makes it harder to think before acting.

Also, it might be helpful to remember that I can probably process only 20g of protein per hour, so any more than that is going to fat storage or being wasted. I was probably craving fats, anyway.

cereal 13g
yoghurt 14g

That’s already 27g. Then I added another 12 with the cheese bringing it up to 39g, which is almost certainly more than my body can process in one meal.

1,287 Calories
OK, YES. I have figured out how to avoid the ^$##@ sodium. Make MY OWN lunchmeat.

Yesterday I “grilled” 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the convection-microwave and cut ’em up into cubes.

I’m eating them in my salad right now. 4oz of meat, 26g of protein, zero carbs, and only 74 mg of sodium, baby!

The Uber best luncheon meat available in an equivalent weight has 600mg sodium, almost 10x. And the best mainstream option has OVER 1000 mg sodium. So this is DEFINITELY the way to go.

Plus, how about the co$t differential?
Raw boneless, skiness chicken breasts, about $3.79/lb
Hillshire Farm Deli Select meat (of any variety) $2.99 for 9oz, which is roughly $5.31/lb

No, I’m not counting the cost of the ziploc bags for freezing the meat, nor the energy to thaw it, nor the energy to cook it. I suspect I’m still breaking even, at least.

Mwa ha ha.

2,261 Calories
Oh man. That creatine supplement is Nasty. The workout buddy is right. Tastes fine at first but has a really bad afterburn. Yecch. I have to do this for 8 weeks?! Yipes.

I’m going to start referring to the Workout Buddy on here as WB. Less typing.

Ugh. I STILL have problems going out to eat. I ate a pretty small, sensible lunch over at Hobart, and in the scheme of things it was extremely large. (over 900 calories) I need to put my entrees on salad plates, and start with a big salad on a dinner plate before I even go for the entrees. This time I should have stuck with just the chicken, and ONE cod cake, and ONE small piece of the brisket instead of TWO cod cakes and TWO small pieces of brisket.

Learning (and applying) this stuff is such a pain.

Can I also just say that I will be very glad to get behind me these 5 days of “loading” the creatine mix? Because after that I only have to take it 1x/day which means 310 less calories of carbs, and less ickyness to drink.

It is daunting to have over 600 extra calories of simple carbs to fit into my daily intake somehow. It’s one reason my relatively conservative lunch ended up being a problem. And I’d rather spend my calories on FOOD than supplements. 😐

OK, I will admit the Balance Bar was unnecessary. But Still… :-p

1,322 Calories
Wow. that stinkin’ creatine supplement is half my daily calories. After today I have only 2 more days to go in this annoying “loading” phase. Friday will be the last, thank goodness.

After that I’ll only have to fit in 310 extra calories, not 620! :-p

And it will be in the afternoon / evening so I’ll be able to go back to my regular kashi golean + yogurt breakfasts, which I kind of miss for both the protein and the fiber. The simple carbs in the creatine supplement are not exactly what my blood sugar levels enjoy, first thing in the morning.

I’m also noticing that 3oz of lean chicken breast is fairly equivalent to a dose of the whey protein. A whole lot cheaper, too, but not as convenient. Also possibly not as bioavailable.

Also, I’m going to have to figure out how to get more fiber, ‘cuz 7 grams isn’t going to cut it and I don’t want the carbs that come in those muffins, at least not while I’m taking 2 doses of creatine supplement per day.

I wonder if I can sprinkle bran on salads, etc? It would take 3/4 c of wheat bran today in order to get the minimum fiber I’m supposed to have. Maybe I can also add it to my protein shakes. I wonder if that would interfere with absorbtion?

Think I’ll start bringing wheat bran to work and sprinkling it on things. Oat bran doesn’t have as much fiber per volume, unfortunately. Luckily both are available for a decent price inlarge quantities at Sauder’s.



  1. Wow. Your commitment is even more impressive reading these.

    Tell me please why the creatine and why are you loading it?
    Why that specific amino acid?

    Comment by jpm14 — April 23, 2009 @ 6:16 pm | Reply

    • Thanks. It’s more than a full-time job, managing this Project.

      The supplements are for building lean muscle mass. The lean muscle mass is to help me burn the fat. The more muscle I’ve got, the faster I can burn up my stored energy…

      The whey protein provides a cocktail of complete amino acids for raw materials.

      The creatine hydrates muscle and makes ATP more available (because creatine is used to cycle ADP + Pi -> ATP). This in turn makes it possible to stress the muscles more during a workout, which encourages them to grow faster.

      Comment by origamifreak — April 23, 2009 @ 8:45 pm | Reply

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