Monday, May 30, 2011

Buff Up Week 9 Recap

Wow, what a busy week! I am loving my improv class but it's been weird having a schedule! I've been doing my weight workout first thing in the morning and fitting in my cardio later in the day after my improv class.

This recap will be very brief -- despite a very busy week, I'm happy with keeping up my healthy habits. I'm still fitting in my workouts and I am really enjoying the mini-meals that I announced last week I'd be trying. I think it helps me control portion size if I know that I get to eat again soon!

Weights/strength: triceps, deltoids, chest
Rest day from cardio

40 minute jog
Weights/strength: upper back, hamstrings, obliques

60 minute hike at Runyon Canyon
Weights/strength: quads, glutes, abs

30 minute bike
Rest day from weights

I've had something to do in the evening every day. On Thursday I went to a Miss California party with one of my roommates, who is interning for a company that works with the Miss USA program.

That's Miss California and Miss Teen California. It was a weird party -- everyone was just walking around, trying to figure out who was important. It was really boring and we left after just a couple hours!

On Friday I stayed in to prep for an early audition on Saturday morning. My audition went great! It was really fun. On Saturday night I went to a friend's birthday party and did not go to two Memorial Day parties I was invited to. I just didn't have the desire to go to all of them.

Food Diary (Sunday):
1) Tofu jerky
2) Green smoothie
3) Baked beans with broccoli
4) Pumpkin pudding
5) Tofu jerky
6) A few pieces fresh pineapple

I made more dehydrator tofu jerky, but this time I froze and thawed the tofu and sliced it thinner. I think next time I will not freeze it and try slicing it even thinner. I'm surprised at how little tofu shrinks while dehydrating. But the end result was delicious!

I also made a big green smoothie today using my new Sun Warrior protein powder.

I can't even believe how much kale I packed in there. I used about half a bunch of kale (stalks and all) - maybe four cups, plus a handful of spinach, 1/3 cup broccoli, a banana, a scoop of Sun Warrior, a little of my green stevia, a teaspoon of spirulina, some cinnamon, a couple pieces frozen mango and raspberries, and water. Despite all that green it was seriously delicious!


It made all this:

Plus a little more.

I'm also trying sprouting some lima beans, just out of curiosity. We'll see how it goes!

How was your weekend?

Do you like doing mini-meals? Do you find that it helps you with portion size, or does it just result in eating more?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Improv Class!

I started my intensive at UCB (Upright Citizens Brigade)! I'll be taking improv classes there from 11-2, Tuesday through Friday for the next two weeks. My first two days have been really fun and enjoyable. I like my teacher and I'm impressed with the program and how they're easing us into it, with each lesson building on the previous one, expanding our skills instead of just throwing us into a situation and having us fail until we get it.

I've been waking up and doing my strength exercises in the morning and coming home and doing my cardio after class. So far that's been working well!

Last night I went to a friend's house to watch the season finale of Glee. They sent me home with some guacamole, hummus, and the last of a bag of pita chips, so I ate some of those today. I don't really think they're healthy but as a rare indulgence they are super tasty! Then when I got home my internet wasn't working, which is why I didn't post last night. Stupid Time Warner Cable.

Weights/strength: obliques, hamstrings, biceps
20 minutes dance
25 minutes bike

Food Diary:
1) 1 serving seitan
2) 1 cup corn chowder with broccoli slaw and cauliflower
3) Pumpkin with protein powder
4) Raw broccoli and carrots with hummus and guacamole, 1 serving pita chips

Weights/strength: inner and outer thighs
30 minutes dance
20 minutes bike

Food Diary:
1) Leftover rice and beans from Sunday's dinner (SaiSai Donburi Macro Bowl from Seed) with lettuce and hummus
2) 1 serving pita chips (the last, thank God)
3) pumpkin with protein powder
4) 1 small potato mashed with kale and nutritional yeast
5) Big salad with lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, and hummus
6) Chocolate almond milk

Today was not my favorite day of eating. I know that hummus and guacamole have "healthy" fats but any kind of higher-fat foods really don't feel good in my tummy and I remember why I avoid them. I know a lot of people eat veggies and then add calories through higher-fat foods but that just is not a good plan for me. I feel a lot better if I eat my higher-calorie foods in the form of low-fat protein.

I also realized when I was going through my pictures that I have a couple pictures from when I was on set a couple weeks ago that I hadn't posted yet.

This is the salad I constructed for myself from a very vegan-unfriendly lunch -- lettuce, carrots, salsa, and mustard.

And my friend and me on set.

Tomorrow I have improv class again and in the evening I'm going to an industry party! Hopefully it will be fun!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

It's A Pirate's Life for Me!

I wanted to focus on my 8-week recap yesterday so I didn't talk much about what I did this weekend.

On Friday I went and saw Pirates of the Caribbean 4 at 9:30 in the morning. That is definitely the earliest movie I have ever seen! I went as part of the internet TV show Movie Review Round Table, so you can see the review:

I hope you watch it and like it! I liked doing the review and I plan on taking part again in the future.

But I did more this weekend than think about pirates. Though I spent plenty of time daydreaming about Captain Jack.

Saturday was kind of a dumb and frustrating day but Sunday was fun. I went to the Studio City Farmers' Market with my new roommate. We saw pretty peas

and a super weird-looking orange.

Oh, and look what I saw when I was walking to Whole Foods!

Hugo's Tacos is now serving vegan soft serve. I haven't tried it but I know vegan soft serve can be a bit hard to come by so if you're interested and in the area, check it out!

On Sunday night I met Daniela from Tierfrei-Mampefen at Seed in Venice for dinner. I've blogged about Seed before -- it's very macrobiotic friendly, but all vegan. I got the SaiSai Donbury Macro Bowl, which has brown rice, black beans, sea veggies, sauerkaut, carrots, daikon radish, and kale with a miso dressing. Daniela is visiting LA from Germany and so we had a nice dinner, walk around Venice, and convo, half in German, half in English. She said she wants to come back next year and I hope she does!

Today I spent the day doing actor business. And then I skyped with my mom and brother! I love them. =)

On to today's diet and exercise --

Like I said yesterday, I want to start eating with a little more purpose, so one thing I'm going to do is try small, frequent meals, like most athletes and body builders do. I figure it might also help with my really high fiber intake. So from now on I'll just number my meals instead of calling them breakfast, lunch, and dinner. For my first day, it went very well. I felt great all day and didn't get any fiber-induced tummyaches.

Food Diary:
1. 1 serving seitan
2. 1 cup corn chowder with broccoli slaw and cauliflower
3. Pumpkin with vanilla protein powder
4. 1 serving seitan
5. A few bites leftover rice and beans with broccoli
6. Chocolate almond milk

55 minutes bike
10 minutes shadowboxing
Weights/strength: quads, squats, plies, triceps, deltoids

Tomorrow I'm starting my improv classes at UCB. I'm taking the intensive, so I'll have class from 11-2 Tuesday through Friday for the next two weeks. I hope it's fun!

Pirate-Themed Links of the Day:
Our Movie Review Round Table review of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (if you didn't watch it above)

A very negative review of Pirates of the Caribbean 4 from Collider. It contrasts starkly with our review, but it's very opinionated and I can't say I disagree with most of the points he makes, even though I enjoyed the movie.

5 Things Captain Jack Taught Me about Fashion and Makeup from Beautifully Invisible. I love this post making the case for Jack Sparrow, fashion icon!

Did you see the latest Pirates movie? If so, did you like it? Are you a fan of the first three?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Buff Up Week 8 Recap

Eight weeks ago (Here's my original post "Confession: I wanna get buff," and recaps for week 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, 6, and 7) I said I wanted to get buff. I didn't really set up goals, though -- I wanted to see it more as a fact-finding mission. But now that it's been eight weeks, it seems like a good time to evaluate what I've been doing and where I want to go from here.

I went through every blog post from the past eight weeks, looking through my exercise and food logs. Here's what I came up with:

Week 1: 390 minutes of cardio, 6 days of weights
Week 2: 480 minutes of cardio, 6 days of weights
Week 3: 395 minutes of cardio, 5 days of weights
Week 4: 155 minutes of cardio, 5 days of weights
Week 5: 35 minutes of cardio, 4 days of weights
Week 6: 275 minutes of cardio, 5 days of weights
Week 7: 330 minutes of cardio, 5 days of weights
Week 8: 285 minutes of cardio, 5 days of weights

I have to say, I'm pretty happy with this. Week 5 was affected by a pulled muscle - hence the lack of cardio. But for eight weeks with a pulled muscle, a week-long vacation, a wrist injury, and the aches that come from an increased workout schedule, I am proud of the work I've done.

As far as eating goes, I ate a lot of broccoli and a lot of bean and lentil soup, a fair amount of pumpkin pudding, edamame, and salad, some seitan, tofu, and Dr. Praeger's veggie patties, and some roasted veggies, oatmeal, fruit, and whole-grain cereal. I didn't really have any sugar or refined carbohydrates (minus a few slices of pita bread I had one night). Not too much caffeine -- coffee a few times a week, and no alcohol. And no added oils besides the small amounts in the seitan and veggie burgers. That's not any different than usual, though. I feel best on a diet made primarily of vegetables and vegan proteins, with some starchy vegetables and a little fruit.

As far as physical changes, I am stronger than I've ever been. I've always been very quick to pack on lower-body muscle but upper-body muscle is always more difficult. My arms have never been this strong and my legs and core are super strong, too. In some ways it can be a little annoying, though. I've realized that I am going to have a hard time clothing my butt because my glutes go kaPOW. I've always had a big butt - a sprinter's butt, like my mom says.

I've learned that I LOVE lifting weights. I also really like working out twice a day - I enjoy feeling like movement is my standard, and sitting is the anomalous part of my day. Starting and ending the day with a workout just feels great. I didn't always manage to do this, and my cardio minutes for the week are directly correlated with how busy I was.

For the next eight weeks, I want to keep working out hard. My best two weeks were the first two, which isn't a surprise because I had a lot of free time and no injuries. But I'd like to keep that momentum. I'd also like to eat with a little more purpose. I didn't change my eating habits at all for the last 8 weeks but I'd like to try and focus on supporting my workouts with my diet. Like I mentioned a couple weeks ago, sometimes I eat a little too much fiber so I bought some Sunwarrior protein powder (it's in the mail now) and I'm going to try drinking some protein shakes sometimes if I feel like I need a lower-fiber meal.

So, that's my 8 week wrap-up. I hope you stick around to hear how the next eight go!

This weekend's food and exercise:

60 minutes bike
Weights/strength: hamstrings, deltoids, glutes, upper back

60 minutes bike
20 minutes yoga
Weights/strength: inner thighs, chest

10 minutes shadowboxing
20 minutes bike
20 minute walk
Weights/strength: obliques, upper back, abs

Food Diary:
Breakfast: 1 cup lentil soup
Lunch: 1/2 cup split pea soup with broccoli, 1/2 cup corn chowder
Snack: Pumpkin pudding
Dinner: 1/2 Sai Sai Donburi Macro Bowl from Seed (brown rice, beans, sea veggies, sauerkraut, carrots, daikon)

I didn't write down everything this weekend but a lot of it looked like this:
Pumpkin smoothie

and this:

Green smoothie with kale, almond milk, banana, mango, protein powder, spirulina, and my green stevia.

As well as my leftover split pea soup I made last week. Here is my fridge, full of jars of soup and smoothies:

I have so much more to write about but this post is getting long enough as it is.

If you haven't weighed in on my book cover options I wrote about on Friday, I'd really appreciate it!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Fashion Friday - Premiere Party and Book Cover Help!

I mentioned that I went to the premiere party for the Diary of a Wedding Planner webseries on Tuesday. I just saw some of the professional photos, so I figured I'd do an outfit post for Fashion Friday!

I wore my red Target dress that I wrote about last week and added a black studded belt, black headband, black tights, and my Franco Sarto boots.

And I uploaded a couple more of our photo booth pics. We went a little photo booth crazy. What can I say? We actors are obsessed with ourselves.

Today's food/exercise:

45 minutes bike
40 minute walk/jog - I jogged to Whole Foods and walked back
Weights/strength: biceps, triceps, abs

Food Diary:
Breakfast: Cracklin' Oat Bran with almond milk
Lunch: Corn chowder; 5 or 6 pieces of dehydrated tofu
Dinner: Homemade soup with split peas, celery, and carrots
Snack: Pumpkin smoothie

Aaaaand lastly, I have a design question for all y'all. Design is related to fashion, right?

So I got the proof for my book, but now I'm having debates/convos with some people who don't like the cover. I'm not particularly attached to the original cover, and I still have time to change it - I haven't approved the proof yet. But after I approve it, it will go for sale and I can't go back. So I'd love to get your opinions.

Here's the book cover right now:

And the back cover:

What do you guys think? Is the front cover too symmetrical or simplistic? Is the back text too big? Do you have any other criticisms and factors that would lead you to either purchase or not purchase this book?

Here is an alternate cover idea:

Do you like that better? Do multiple pictures look better than one?

Also, does anyone know anything about the legality of using a picture taken inside a museum? All the photos are mine, so I wasn't worried about it, but my stepdad pointed out that my original cover shot was taken in a museum (the Vatican museum, to be specific) so I don't know if I can use it.

Thanks so much, I really need this feedback!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dehydrator Tofu Jerky

I've been out of the house so often that I want to make more easily transportable snacks. I love jerky so I decided to try making some tofu jerky in my dehydrator!

I bought a few packages of tofu at TJ's:

Sliced them up and coated them with Bragg's, ketchup, garlic powder, paprika, and a little apple cider vinegar.

I let them marinate for about an hour and then dehydrated them for about eight hours.

They taste delicious! But next time I'm going to slice it thinner (I didn't know how much it would shrink down - not that much, actually) and try and make it BBQ flavored. What it really tastes like, actually, is fried tofu. I would definitely recommend dehydrating your tofu instead of frying it!

Morning: 10 minutes bike, 10 minute danceathon
weights/strength: hamstrings, obliques
Evening: 20 minutes bike
weights/strength: shadow boxing, glutes

Food Diary:
Breakfast: Cracklin' Oat Bran with almond milk
Lunch: Corn chowder
Dinner: Yesterday's split pea soup with broccoli slaw, broccoli, and nutritional yeast; 5 pieces tofu jerky

I had a good actor day today. My meeting went well and tonight I wrote postcards updating casting directors I've met about my SAG membership. And I watched the adorable movie The Umbrellas of Cherbourg -- it was Catherine Deneuve's breakout role, the male lead is totally hot, and every line of dialogue is sung! I recommend it.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Premiere Party

I went to a fun party tonight!

But first I spent a few hours today cooking. I made some soup and a recipe that I'll share tomorrow. The soup was just my basic carrots, celery, and yellow split pea stew.


Then tonight I went to a premiere party for a webseries. It was fun and full of actors - including a series regular from a TV show I watch! I don't know who he knew and why he was there but nobody seemed to notice him but me.

I dressed up. It's unseasonably cold in LA so I wore tights.

I got a lot of compliments on the dress!

Terrible flash-free picture of the party.

And AWESOME picture from the photo booth! Check out the picture second from the top -- it's like an Axe commercial. Photo booths are so fun!

Tomorrow I have a meeting with a potential agent. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Universal Studios

Guess where I went today?

Universal Studios!

As a SoCal resident, if you buy one day, you get get to come back the rest of the year.

That's the Heisman pose, BTW.

My lunch. JK! Shark isn't vegan!

Hangin' with my buds, prepping for our space mission.

Hangin' with Beetlejuice.

OK, these are my actual friends. We went on the studio tour, even though I just did it a couple months ago when my brother came to visit.

When I came home I ate a veggie bowl for dinner and pounded out some time on the bike.

Food Diary:
Breakfast: 1.5 servings edamame
Lunch: Coffee with soy milk (I was at the park and didn't want to spend much money and I really wasn't hungry yet)
Dinner: Broccoli slaw bowl, broccoli with corn chowder, chocolate almond milk

20 minutes bike - high intensity intervals
Weights/strength: hamstrings, glutes

I'm still trying to figure out how I can safely lift weights with my wrist injury. I don't want to just focus on lower body because I don't know how long my wrist will hurt, but I might have to. But I think weight lifting could be fine if I'm careful to not bend my wrists. The real thing I can't do is put pressure on my hand, like in a pushup, plank, or bridge -- that's what hurts. Any advice?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Buff Up Week 7 Recap

Seven weeks of the buff up craziness (Here's my original post "Confession: I wanna get buff," and recaps for week 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, and 6) and I'm rockin' a new accessory.

Yeah. I got a push-up-inflicted injury. How cool do I feel?

Haha, that's my foot in the picture!

There's this bump on my hand/wrist -

Gross. It hurts.

Besides that, everything's still the same. I'm still working out hard and feeling and looking about the same. I do need to get a gym membership, but obviously I'm going to wait for my wrist issue to resolve itself.

I am having a weird nutrition issue. I think I need to find a way to make my diet a little lower in fiber. My diet is SO high in fiber that sometimes I get tummy aches. But everything I like to eat is really high in fiber! Veggies, beans... veggies and beans... Out of curiosity I've been tracking my food the last few days. Yesterday I ate about 1500 calories and 90 grams of fiber. The day before that was more like 1300 cals and 72 grams of fiber. That is a LOT of fiber! Idk, any ideas? Halp!

So, that's my recap. Moving on.

Blogger had some stupid issues over the weekend. So if you missed it, check out my Fashion Friday post about shopping for dresses at Target:

And I mentioned that I joined SAG and got the proof of my book.

Here's my exercise for the past few days -

45 minutes bike
20 minute danceathon

35 minutes bike
Weights/strength: deltoids, triceps, obliques

50 minute walk
15 minute bike
Weights/strength: inner/outer thighs, glutes

And a lot of my food this weekend looked like this:

Broccoli, yellow split peas, cauliflower, broccoli slaw, repeat... Yum!

On Friday I went to a short film premiere and on Saturday I went to a party. I dressed a liiittle wacky, just because.

Today I spent the day doing agent/manager research. But tonight I did have some fun by watching Blade Runner while following the Twitter convo #movienighttweet, live-tweeted by Edward James Olmos. Twitter can be so fun!