Eating On Set!

I’ve been racking my brain on what to blog about recently and nothing has felt “right” (hence the week-plus-long hiatus). Does it have enough to do with nutrition? Do I know enough about it? You get the idea. So I decided to take the pressure off and wait for inspiration to come my way. And then it hit me! I LOVE the food that’s served while working on set.

Let me back up a little… While I’ve been pursuing my goal of health coaching, I’ve also been working as a tutor/teacher for child actors. So far I’ve worked with kids on location for a TV pilot, kids who have roles in the opera and kids who work on commercial shoots. I’m shocked at how much FUN I’m having and how freakin’ nice everyone is! Seriously, I’ve never had more thank you’s in my life. Plus, it’s a great way to break up my work week!

Now to my favorite part! THE FOOD!! This was my biggest shocker. When you’re on location they 1. Provide all meals for you, and 2. The catering is fantastic! For some reason I always thought they served bagels, chips and candy with the occasional sandwich for lunch. That’s if I even thought about it at all. Anyways, the pic below is what I had for lunch on my first day….

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What you see is a fresh mixed salad hidden by sole, an eggplant rolled with some amazing cheese mix inside, quinoa, asparagus and a ton of mixed veggies….YUM! I ate every bite and was so tempted to go back for more (as in exactly that portion again). But I stopped myself for fear of what people (you know, people with eyes) would think of me for eating half the buffet. But let.me.tell.you, this picture doesn’t do it justice!

Needless to say, I was very impressed with how healthy the options were. And grateful that as I’m on my journey with nutrition, healthy meals like this are available to me :).

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This is a photo I took while waiting for a kid to start tutoring. Seemed symbolic of where my thoughts were that day and made me laugh a bit. Not sure why it’s so large (I’m obviously still learning this blog business), but maybe it’s because I’m having some big ideas lately;). Hope you all are having a great week and thanks for reading!

Good Times and Great People

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The summer has ended, the leaves are starting to going brown and school is officially back in session! Although I’m not teaching anymore, the energy and excitement of getting back to work is very much in my bones. These days part of that work is to have FUN! I honestly believe that an important part of pursuing a new career is being around people and places that inspire you. At least for me it is. This week I was lucky enough to have multiple adventures that did just that :).

First, I visited with one of my favorite friends from college. We talked about our goals (she’s running her first 5k next month!), kids, nutrition and of course reminisced about the good ‘ol days. She also took me to the beach and bought me a lobster roll. It was AMAZING! As was the whole visit. I left feeling totally blissed out. Image

A couple days later I continued the tradition of being on the chase boat with my step-dad (I think we’re going on 3 years now), while my mom rowed in a race called Lighthouse to Lighthouse. This year the race photographer was in our boat, my step-brother was behind the wheel and we had a wild ride to get just the right shots! Here’s one I took on my phone of my moms boat. Between riding in a boat full of people that were fun to be with and my mom being a bad-ass on the water it was fabulous!

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The very next day my mom invited me to meet her and her sister at the Met for a birthday celebration. My Aunt Catherine takes her birthdays very seriously. In fact, she’s been known to have birth-weeks and birth-years…and she gets aways with it! So to celebrate her 87th birthday, my mom drove her into the city to go to her favorite museum. Aunt Catherine always has good stories of when she would take her children the Met 50 years ago and it’s the museum my mom always took me growing up. We started with a nice meal (I had a corn & crab soup and some of my aunts chicken salad – so good!), talked with each other and explored the greek and egyptian wings a bit. There’s something magical about my Aunt Catherine and this day was no exception.

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This was my favorite statue. It was titled Earth. I loved that she’s holding food and that it just feels abundant.

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So that was my week! Fueling up on these good times with great people allowed me to come back and be the best version on myself. To say I’m grateful is an understatement. Now, back to figuring out how to develop a website…

In through your nose…

I started running in middle school. I was never fast, but I stuck with it, even joining the track team for a bit in 9th grade and running a marathon after college. As an adult running continues to be my exercise of choice. I like the consistency of it – put sneakers on, run, stretch – not many changes. Until this year. Yup, you guessed it, I changed how I was breathing. And it has rocked my world!! No joke.

Breath in through your nose, out through your mouth is something I’ve heard multiple times throughout my life. But I would just think whatever, I’ll run how I want. And breathing through my mouth was what I wanted. It was just easier.

Then I read the book Body, Mind and Sport by John Douillard, where he highly recommends nose breathing when exercising. It changed my mind and the way I run. The first few times are really rough (seriously), but.it.makes.such.a.difference!

So if you want to try it, here’s some highlights and how-to’s:

1. We are all designed to be nose breathers

If anyone has a baby (or access to one) notice how they breathe when they’re calm or sleeping. All through the nose! The reason being is that we are all born “obligate nose breathers”. That’s a fancy way of saying that we’re designed to breathe through our noses. We only learn to breathe through our mouths if something scary or stressful happens. For example, if a baby has a cold and can’t breathe through their nose, they open their mouths and start to cry in order to keep breathing. So when we’re stressed later in life, like when we’re scared OR running really hard, we respond by going to our emergency source of breathing and gulp the oxygen down quick! This works great if we’re actually in danger, but for exercising not so much.

2. Try it! (For more than a day…slackers!)

First: Warm up for 5min (i.e. walking, stretching) and breathe as deeply as you can through your nose during this time. Make sure the air goes all the way down to the bottom of your lungs. Then breathe out through your nose, squeezing your stomach at the end to get the last of it out.

Second: Start running at about 30% of your normal rate while keeping this deep breath. It’ll be frustrating. Even more so when you have to slow down in order to maintain this. Some of you might have to settle for a fast walk…at first. Truthfully, I felt like I was suffocating in this phase. I would do it for about 5min (or maybe 30 seconds, but it felt like forever!!) and then run “normal”. And then try again. Eventually it not only got easier, it got addictive! Plus, I run just as fast if not faster than when I started. The only difference is that I feel calm and invigorated instead of red faced and panting at the end of my runs.

3. Final Thoughts

I first tried breathing this way for about two weeks, off and on, and then gave up. I absolutely hated the feeling of not getting enough oxygen. Then I tried again about a week later just for giggles. That’s when it got easier for me. Now I breathe in through my nose for the entire run and only stop when my legs get tired. It’s awesome.

There’s SO much more I want to write about this topic, but this should get you started! I would love to know if any of you try it!! Feel free to ask me questions, pick up the book (it’s one of my faves) or stay tuned to future posts. I doubt this is my last one on breathing and/or running ;).

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Lacing up for my morning run!

The First Day

This is the first day of teaching in Connecticut, the first day for New York AP’s and Principals to report back to work and the first day for other teachers to get ready for the school year ahead. For the last 7 years I  have joined them in these first day rituals. But not today.

Today is my first day as a Health Coach. Or maybe I’m an aspiring Health Coach until I get my first client. Either way, this blog is to explore transitioning into a new career and to share what I’m learning with all of you in a (hopefully) entertaining and informative way.

So here I am, on my first morning, eating my first meal of the day and in the middle of my first blog…

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Yum!