Torching Ten – Week 2 Update

This week I have managed to torch zero, unfortunately.  This is part of the process, and patience is always required when losing weight.  I am taking a moderate carbohydrate, zero sugar approach to weight loss as recommended by my doctor. I am strength training two to three times per week, also as recommended. I think the real loss will come when I bump my running back up to about 20 miles per week. For comparison, this week I ran about 11 miles. Training for the triathlon required me to sacrifice some of my running time to biking and swimming, so it will take a few weeks to build up to my optimal levels again.

Photo by Daniella Segura. Used with permission under Creative Commons License.
Photo by Daniella Segura. Used with permission under Creative Commons License.: F

For this week’s weight loss research report, I was very interested to read about a small study in  Science Daily (30 men and 30 women) that used a “concentrated extract of thylakoids” of the kind found in spinach. The subjects were give either a single dose of the concentrate or a placebo and it was found the in men the extract showed a “trend toward decreased energy intake” (i.e. eating less), while a previous study showed a decrease in cravings for sweets in women.  While this study did use a double blind methodology, meaning that neither the subject nor the researchers knew who was getting the actual extract instead of a placebo, the sample size is really too small to indicate anything except that further testing is required. My take away from this small study is that a spinach salad for lunch may help to alleviate my afternoon sweet cravings.  As spinach is full of nutrients and I like it anyway, it seems like a good n=1 experiment. I will report my findings here next week!

RocketChix Triathlon

Two RocketChix

In the interest of Torching Ten and having fun with my sister, I participated in the RocketChix triathlon this weekend, on the campus of Louisiana State University. This was a sprint distance, women’s only triathlon that offered a very friendly atmosphere. Several years ago, I was very into triathlon, but felt that I should give it up, as it was a very solo activity for me and, as a result, caused me to be very focused on myself; my workouts, my results, my gear, etc. At about the same time, I was blessed to join an AMAZING group of women runners who changed my focus and greatly enriched my life. I did not miss triathlon.

My sister started getting interested in triathlon about the time I started to just train for half-marathons and relays, we just missed getting to race together.  We did one mini-tri together in 2013, but the timing was not right again until this year.  The experience of a sister-bonding weekend coupled with a fun race was something that I will not forget and plan on repeating. It looks like I will repeat it sooner than I thought, as today she sent me a link to an upcoming duathlon.