Day 7: Tips for Building a Healthy Nutrition Plan

As I sat in the grocery store parking lot stuffing my face with Fritos and goat cheese after working out, I thought…I should probably get a nutrition plan underway. I need something simple, and something that does not require many cooking skills.

As I have been reading, I have noticed a general consensus of the following:

Get organized and pre-plan out the meals for the week. Cook batches of ingredients ahead of time to use throughout the week like brown rice, chicken, or soups. Freeze the extras in pre-portioned containers to use later.

Eat 6-8 snacks/meals throughout the day. Eat light before workouts obviously and then specific recovery meals.

Consume real, whole food and don’t be excessive with processed foods like gels and powder supplements.

Stash non-perishable back up food in your car, gym bag, and desk drawer (protein bars will most likely be mine).

Keep a positive view of food. Food is fuel, and quality calories are a triathlete’s best friend.

Hydrate. Hydrate. Hydrate.

I will be referring to this plan, The No-Brainer Nutrition Plan. Simple is best in my opinion.

Comment and share your nutrition tips, too! Thanks!

WO: 2 hour spin class, 50 miles


Day 6: Intimidate Intimidation and Build Self-Confidence

Armed with my SMART goal, I anticipated waking with renewed vigor to bring my future self into the present. To my surprise, I had feelings of dread and lacked motivation. This is no good, I thought to myself. I am not even through week one, and I am already sluggish. Unacceptable. I reflected on my feelings and realized that I was intimidated.

I had set a lofty goal, and now I wasn’t so sure I could achieve it. I couldn’t let my future self intimidate my present self!

How to Intimidate Intimidation

Ultimately, intimidation happens when we undermine our self-worth or ability to achieve something. Self-worth doubts occur more often when we are intimidated by other people, and questioning our ability to achieve when we are trying to reach large goals. We are intimidated by others when we perceive ourselves to be less than them. This creates unwelcomed behaviors of anxiety, nervousness, and shyness. Lack of confidence to achieve is simply not recognizing our previous accomplishments. If we recognize our previous accomplishments then we are more likely to trust that we can achieve again.

The latter would accurately describe my scenario this morning. I do not have confidence in my ability to achieve. Time to knock that off. I guess I do need to hold true to the cheesy power statement I read on the gym wall the other day, “Believe, and you will achieve.”

Building Confidence in our Abilities

To boost our confidence in our abilities to achieve, we need to reach small goals. As those reached goals accumulate, refer back to those accomplishments when the next goal is intimidating you.

Follow this Intimidate Intimidation Game Plan and be on your way to a new, confident you.

Focus and complete the smaller daily steps, don’t look at the ‘big picture’ continuously.

Commend yourself for your accomplishments each day.

Remind yourself of previous accomplishments when the current day seems daunting.

Focus. Commend. Remind. You will build your confidence in your ability to achieve, and you, my friend, are now the intimidator.

WO: 60 minute cardio strength class

Day 5: Set a SMART Goal and Achieve

The experts have weighed in even though we are becoming disinterested with their goal setting updates.  However, it is still true; goal setting does more good than harm.  Goals give us the focus necessary to forge our direction in life.

Ask yourself these questions before locking yourself into a goal.  Is your goal really something you want or does it just sound cool?  If it is not something you really want then you won’t be motivated to achieve it.  Now that can cause more harm than good.

Goal Setting Benefits

The benefits of goal setting are numerous.  Goal setting provides you with a big picture of your life.  Goal setting can help keep you organized and minimize daily distractions.  If you achieve your goal, enjoy the self-confidence boost.  Goal setting also staves off the mundane feeling to everyday living.  Each day is another step closer to realizing your desires.  It is advantageous to keep your set goals positive and wherever possible add some flexibility.

Write It Down

Goals should be written down for three reasons.  One, you can check off your progress.  Two, you can prepare for the next day’s action steps, and three, you will have a record of your forward progress in life.  Simply put, bragging rights.


SMART goals are still surviving the criticism of the times.  Your goals need to be SMART.

-Specific: Include tasks that are detailed and action oriented.

-Measurable: If you cannot assign a number to it, it is not measurable.  For example, for 15 minutes I will meditate each day.  Not I will become more relaxed.

-Attainable: Identify precise action steps you will take each day to achieve your goal.

-Relevant:  Is your goal meaningful to you?  Will it be rewarding to achieve it?  If you answered no, get a new goal.

-Time bound: Set a time limit.  You will complete your action steps for how long over how many days?

My SMART goal:  I will finish the Ironman UK in July 2015.  I have selected a beginner’s triathlete training plan.  It is a 20 week plan.  It is specific for each day.  Measureable.  Attainable.  Relevant.  And Time Bound.

WO: Rest Day

Day 4: The Future Self Now

I always find those inspirational quotes at times annoying. If you believe than you can achieve. Really? My leg is broken, now what. Ironically, I found this Ted Talk quite insightful. Daniel Goldstein was discussing how self-discipline is a muscle that if we use it often enough it becomes fitter and thus does its job. It maintains our pre-planned course regardless of the temptations in our path. He mocked the commitment devices we often lay ourselves prey to, for example, pay one dollar every time you cuss. Though these are well-intentioned efforts, ultimately we are telling ourselves we are powerless to change our behavior.

He pinpointed the real battle is between our present self and our future self. Our present self has all the power because it is just that, in the present. Our future self is voiceless because we have yet to fully grasp our future self outside of our present self. He encouraged his audience to restore their belief in their future self. Goldstein challenged his listeners to give a voice to their future self that is held hostage to the behaviors of their present self.

The only way I could think of to give my future self a shot at convincing the present self delayed gratification is worthwhile was to visualize that futuristic moment when future self gets what it wants. Ultimately, what I want. My present self will quickly forget any discomforts because my present self will become my future self. I realized too that if your present self has let you down enough times, you’ll eventually end up ignoring that voice. So as I spun my pedals around and around in monotonous circles today, I brought my future self’s voice into the present self. I am an IM finisher.


WO: 21 miles in spin class

Day 3: Goodness Inside

Great day. It is unseasonably warm for Denver right now. End of January and we have posted temperatures in the 70’s the last two days. Makes me very anxious to get out and ride the bike!

Drank a Green Machine Naked fruit drink after swimming today. I was reading all the ingredients of its ‘goodness inside’ (see attached image). Made me smile to think what if we could have a drink for our emotional ‘goodness inside’.

Let’s just take garlic, for instance. Garlic is known to be low in calories, so nothing excessive, but it is packed with Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Manganese (aids in processes in the body). Garlic is given credit for being able to help us ward off colds. It helps to reduce blood pressure, could prevent brain diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia, detoxify our bodies, improve athletic performance, and help us live longer!

So what emotional ingredient do we need that could possibly provide emotional benefits like what garlic does for us physically? Need something that fortifies us to emotionally process accurately. But nothing excessive, so no artificial feelings. No lies. Need something that can ward off depression and hopelessness. Reduce our anxiety, prevent worry, fend off negative thinking, improve our capacity to feel, and help us love longer!

Friendship? Validation? Encouragement? Sympathy? Honesty? Acceptance? Love?

That’s it! The power ingredient for emotional goodness inside would have to be love. Love has all the ingredients I already listed.

Call it the Love Machine, the berry smoothie for emotional goodness inside.

WO: 1.5 mile swim

Day 2: Purpose

“Find a purpose in life so big it will challenge every capacity to be at your best.” David O. McKay

Hmm, I think lofty goals could qualify as well as a purpose. Yes, I think the Ironman journey qualifies, but while I was swimming I wondered, “What else challenges our every capacity to be at our best?” Parenting! Every day, every moment. Am I patient? Did I handle that situation in the most loving way? Was I present and giving it my all or just trying to get her to stop yammering? Did I offer the most kid-friendly solution, or rush through the explanation as if she was an adult or teenager at best? Yes, to be a good mom to Isabelle is challenging my every capacity. I thank her for that! I also thought how changing seasons of life demand our every capacity. How do we respond when things do not going according to plan? Divorce? Loss of job? Career change? Health upsets? Financial hardships? Do we despair and lose hope? Do we slumber longer than we should in futile thinking? Do we cling to an excuse, so we do not have to ante up our very best? I have. I have despaired and quit putting energy into hope before. I have worried in circles in unproductive thought. Clinging to excuses…still working on that one. Which is part of my IM journey, there is no excuse for not doing the workouts and not finishing! WO: .5 mile swim and 12 mile stationary bike

Day 1

I am four months away from turning 39. Which more importantly that means, I am only 16 months away from turning 40. I not only want to be the woman my daughter is proud to say, ‘That’s my mom!’… but I also want to be the woman that I am proud to say, ‘That’s me!’

I want to be an IRONMAN. Plain and simple. I want to get the red M tattooed under my bicep after I have finished the race. Official proof, I am strong, determined, and capable.

I invite you to join me on this journey. I will most likely complain, whine, and cuss, but the victory is going to be oh so sweet.

I am signed up for the Ironman UK in Bolton, England on July 19, 2015. All good odd numbers, going to be great!

I am ordinary. I am bent in many ways, but I am going to prove to myself, that anything really IS possible.

Welcome to my little, insecure world as I tackle the frailty of the human mind, body, and spirit. I put my bet on the human spirit though. I think we are all stronger than we allow ourselves to be.

WO: mile swim, felt strong today