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Bookish Becomes a Supple Badger


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Maybe try toasting the pecans a little before adding them to the cod? I'm sure they toast in the oven, but my dad always used to insist on the extra toasting. He swore by it.

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“Do you know where the wicked go after death?"
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Congrats on your successful first week! How is your second going? 

Btw, I am looking forward to reading the next great fish recipe! I will definitely try the salmon.  

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Great job Badger.  I enjoyed the book review as well as your way of chopping nuts - I do something similar using a rolling pin, but the skillet sounds easier - anything to have less cleaning!  I will also admit to hopping around on my Pilates ball.  It's kind of hard NOT to!

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How's things going this week Badger?

Today is victory over yourself of yesterday; tomorrow is your victory over lesser men.

                                                                                                                       -Miyamoto Musashi

Current Challenge: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/83906-kvedulfs-second-challenge-first-steps-on-a-new-way/

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This is my brain on weasels.....

 

 

....except there were about 20 of the little bastards, and there weren't any cute little backflips or bounces. 

 

So I have a good friend through another online community. We've been in communication for a few years now, and recently he said that he was going to be in the area on business. I used 20 Seconds of Courage and suggested a meet-up. On the 30th, we met in a great Seattle bookstore (which oddly is now only 4 blocks from the first apartment that my then-boyfriend-now-husband shared together, talk about deja vu) and then wandered until we found a place for lunch. It was great to meet someone IRL that I had previously only known online - which I have never done before. We spent a few hours chatting (and eating!) before I had to hit the road home. All's well, right?

 

 Well, I don't know if the road trip took more out of me than I thought, or if it was some sort of post-socializing exhaustion like @Dagger has described, but starting the next day the brainweasels attacked. I was second-guessing everything I said and did, convinced that I'd come across as a total idiot and would never hear from said friend again. This was totally unfair - to him as well as me! - but I couldn't seem to stop the spiral. It wasn't until about Wednesday that I managed to regain some semblance of normal state of mind. When I get like this I tend to withdraw, hence my long absence. Anyway, I'm better now.

 

As you can imagine, my progress has been stalled this week. But I did cook fish! It wasn't a 100% success, but good enough to warrant further experimentation.

 

Salmon Cakes

1 small rib celery, minced

2 green onions, white & pale green parts only, minced

A small handful cilantro, chopped (maybe 2 tablespoons? not much, it's a strong herb but I like it better than parsley)

2 cloves garlic, smashed and minced

salt, pepper, and Old Bay Seasoning (or whatever seafood seasoning blend you like) to taste

1 can (14.5 oz) salmon (Did you know that in the U.S., all canned salmon is wild-caught? Bonus!)

1 egg, beaten

Mayonnaise - optional

 

To make, I combined the first 4 ingredients, plus seasonings, in a medium bowl. Added the salmon and mixed, then added the egg and mixed. I'm not sure how much mayo I added, just squeezed the bottle and stirred until it looked "right." I don't think it needed the mayo, though. 

 

Next, I scooped the batter into handfuls that I patted into sort of round shapes - this batter is VERY wet so don't expect those perfect round fish house pucks that stand 2 inches high- and placed on a plate covered with parchment (the parchment is important! you could try foil, but DON'T use plastic wrap). I got 8 patties. The plate went into the fridge to set - supposed to chill for an hour but i managed to wait maybe 15 minutes before firing up the oven.

 

This next part is where my brilliance kicks in. *self back-pat* See, with cakes that are this wet, and no binders but a single egg, how to flip them without breaking them? The answer is, don't.

 

Place a baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 400F*. When the oven is hot, slide the salmon-laden parchment directly onto the hot sheet. They'll start sizzling immediately. Start checking them for doneness at 10 minutes. Mine took closer to 30 minutes before they were done. *I think 400F wasn't hot enough; next time I'll try 425F.

 

I think with a better brand of salmon (note to self, don't skimp on the main ingredient), a longer chill, and a hotter oven these will be about perfect. :) 

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"'It's time for a few small repairs,' she said." - Shawn Colvin

 

 

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Oof. Congrats on going out to meet your friend! And overcoming the brainweasels. They're the worst. I hope you punched them in their little weasely faces.

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On 7/27/2016 at 2:45 AM, Bookish Badger said:

4. "Chopped" a couple large handfuls of bulk pecans into tiny pieces by putting them into a ziplock back and smacking the holy heck out of them with a heavy-bottomed skillet. Recipes will tell you to grind them in a blender, but then I'd have to clean it. And this was more fun. It also scared my husband and my cat, keeping them both out of the kitchen while I cooked ;) 

This is my kind of prep! :D  I always look for streamlining and efficiency ;)

Great job with your challenge, and you inspired me to get some cod for next week (I don't remember the last time I had white fish).  Keep it up!

 

ETA:  I used to have (sometimes still do) those "OMG I was an IDIOT" ruminations after social situations.  EFT tapping really helped me deal with those thoughts, and now if they even turn up, they can be gone in minutes (instead of two nights of tossing and turning).

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14 hours ago, Bookish Badger said:

So I have a good friend through another online community. We've been in communication for a few years now, and recently he said that he was going to be in the area on business. I used 20 Seconds of Courage and suggested a meet-up.

 

Good for you. I'm sure you came off fine.

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@Bookish Badger & @Vibrantella

 

Sorry to hear that you suffer from this. I know it's selfish but still, I'm kinda glad to know I'm not the only one. 

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3 hours ago, Bookish Badger said:

 

I am unfamiliar with this. Please tell me more?

EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) or Tapping is a very simple way of dealing with your emotions (although some practitioners say it can work on everything, even physical pain / weight loss / performance improvement, etc.) through tapping on a sequence of acupressure points whilst saying the negative thoughts in a particular way.  It is really simple, even though there is a lot written about it, and not everyone actually agrees on the order of the points.  Check out these links and vids: 

http://www.thetappingsolution.com/what-is-eft-tapping/

http://www.emofree.com/eft-tutorial/tapping-basics/how-to-do-eft.html

 

Doing it has helped me with some things, not all.  Well, TBH, I prefer when it works immediately, like for stage fright or as mentioned above; if I have to do it regularly, like for weight loss, I lose interest (maybe I should do some tapping to deal with losing interest!).  Still, the weight is coming off, so who knows if tapping helped as well...  

 

It was a bit counter-intuitive at first, as I was familiar with using affirmations and it seemed as if I was saying/affirming negative things; however, tapping on those meridian points helps disperse the negativity.  Once that has been dealt with, you can tap in new, more positive choices.  Anyways, it's helped some people (incl. me), it's free and easy to use.  Good luck if you choose to try it!

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@Bookish Badger, @Vibrantella and @Guzzi You're not alone. He's another one who second guesses everything. And it is nice knowing you're not the only one.

 

So good that you managed to beat the brain weasels. We all know how insidious and frustrating and horrible the brain weasels are. Awesome work!

 

P.S Salmon cakes sound tasty.

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Today is victory over yourself of yesterday; tomorrow is your victory over lesser men.

                                                                                                                       -Miyamoto Musashi

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On 8/7/2016 at 6:44 AM, Kvedulf said:

@Bookish Badger, @Vibrantella and @Guzzi You're not alone. He's another one who second guesses everything. And it is nice knowing you're not the only one.

 

So good that you managed to beat the brain weasels. We all know how insidious and frustrating and horrible the brain weasels are. Awesome work!

 

P.S Salmon cakes sound tasty.

We could totally have a Second Guesser party at this point. :D I'm especially bad about it when it comes to social interactions.

 

Good job on the 20 seconds of courage! I'm sure your friend was as happy to meet you as you were to meet him. And probably just as nervous afterwards!

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6 hours ago, PollyannaAgain said:

 

Good job on the 20 seconds of courage! I'm sure your friend was as happy to meet you as you were to meet him. And probably just as nervous afterwards!

 

Good point! 

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No big update; I just wanted to share (brag) something that I received from my husband today:

 

"Saturday 10 August 1991

 

It was Saturday, under the sign of Leo. 

The US president was George H. W. Bush (Republican). 

In that special week of August people in US were listening to (Everything I Do) I Do It For You by Bryan Adams.

In UK (Everything I Do) I Do It For You by Bryan Adams was in the top 5 hits.

Double Impact, directed by Sheldon Lettich, was one of the most viewed movies released in 1991 while The Kitchen God'S Wife by Amy Tan was one of the best selling books.

 

And I married the girl of my dreams."

 

Cue the waterworks!

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"'It's time for a few small repairs,' she said." - Shawn Colvin

 

 

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That is super beautiful and sweet :)

Today is victory over yourself of yesterday; tomorrow is your victory over lesser men.

                                                                                                                       -Miyamoto Musashi

Current Challenge: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/83906-kvedulfs-second-challenge-first-steps-on-a-new-way/

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Thanks, @Kvedulf and @Owlet! He's a keeper. 

 

For today, I have another book review of sorts. I apologize in advance, this is going to be a long post and might not be terribly interesting to some. It is more a way for me to process the ideas I have bouncing around in my head right now. The book is Gary Taubes's Why We Get Fat and What to Do About It.

 

I had starting reading Good Calories, Bad Calories a while back, but I had to return it to the library before I was more than a third of the way through it. It's a loooong book, basically a meta-analysis of various meta-analyses of nutrition research. Fascinating stuff, but not the easiest thing to comprehend, and he's building his case so carefully that it takes a while for him to get to his conclusions.

 

Turns out, WWGF is a condensed version of GCBC (hey, that could almost be the name of a nightclub!): all the conclusions, all the proper citations, but almost no research analysis. Anyway, here's what stuck with me most:

 

He pretty neatly demolishes the idea that fatness is simply a matter of eating more than you need. Yes, it's true that the body can't generate fat out of thin air, but that doesn't answer the question of why some people never get fat, many never get more than 10-15 pounds over "ideal", and some struggle their whole lives with morbid obesity. It also doesn't explain why many endurance athletes, even marathoners who'd never be accused of needing to "move more" struggle with weight gain as they get older - or never lost as much as they'd wanted when they took up running. The one thing that the obesity experts who subscribe to the "calorie in - calorie out" and "eat less move more" models never consider is how fat is regulated in the body.

 

Now, metabolism experts do study fat regulation, and to them the answer is common knowledge. It isn't even controversial. "Carbohydrates drive insulin drives fat storage." Insulin isn't the only factor, but it's the biggest and it cues the dozens of other hormones and enzymes that controls the process. And if anything throws off the process (like insulin resistance), then the body is going to store fat inappropriately.

 

To explain this concept better, he uses a metaphor that compares lung cancer to obesity:

 

Not all smokers will get lung cancer; 1 in 6 men will, and 1 in 9 women. Not what Vegas would call a long shot but still far from the majority. So that's why we hear anecdotes like, "I don't believe smoking is really that bad because my great-aunt Mabel smoked 2 packs a day for 70 years and was in perfect health until her Harley went over a cliff when she was 95!" BUT, for those who do get lung cancer, smoking or long-term second hand smoke caused it. If we had no cigarettes, we'd have virtually no lung cancer. It would be a virtually unknown condition, instead of yet another tragic statistic.

 

Likewise, not all those who eat carbs, even excessive refined ones, will get fat from it. Thus we have the stories, "I don't believe that carbs cause fatness, because my great-aunt Mabel ate a pound cake a day for 60 years and..." well, you get the picture. But for those who do get fat, it is because of the carbohydrates in the diet. If we had no refined carbs and limited natural simple carbs, we'd have virtually no obesity.

 

Aside from the protein we use to rebuild tissues, our bodies can do only two things with the energy that digestion dumps into our blood stream: burn it or store it. What it can't do is just let it float around. And whether our bodies prefer to burn or store seems to vary from person to person on a continuum: Energy Burners on one end, Fat Storers on the other.

 

The ones that are deep into the Energy Burner side are going to be very active, either choosing livelihoods that require a lot of physical effort, or endurance athletes. They are simply responding to their bodies' need to get rid of the excess energy on hand. So they aren't lean because they are so active, they are so active because they are lean (don't store fat easily). How's that for turning an assumption on it's head?

 

By the same token, those who fall far on the Fat Storer side of things are going to put on weight anytime extra energy is available. No surprise, these folks are going to be preferentially more sedentary, because all that extra energy is going into their fat cells immediately and not leave much that is readily accessible for activity. So they aren't fat because they're sedentary, they're sedentary because they're fat. 

 

I can almost hear the naysayers now: "But fat is stored FOR energy! Just go for a walk and burn it off, ya lazy tub!" And that works for those who a. fall into the middle of the spectrum, b. never bought into the idea that Snackwells are better than broccoli for a diet, and therefore c. haven't developed insulin resistance. That last one is the real rat-bastard in my life. 

 

Insulin resistance leads to perpetually elevated levels of insulin in the blood, in effect constantly signaling the cells that there is a toxic level of blood sugar and it MUST be stored immediately - even when there isn't any. Then you eat your heart-healthy whole-wheat pasta primavera (cooked without fat of course!), toxic levels of blood glucose DO occur, and it is all immediately vacuumed into your fat cells. Leaving your muscles saying, "hey, what about us? We're hungry! Cue those food cravings, dammit!" And you eat again, and the cycle repeats. So not only are the Fat Storers sedentary because they're fat, they overeat because they're fat. (And lest you think this is an over-exaggeration, Taubes relates the sad tale of lab rats, genetically designed to be obese, put on starvation diets - sometimes literally to death. When autopsied, these rats had almost no muscle, their vital organs were scavenged, and they still had a very high body fat percentage. The poor things couldn't access their own fat stores even when their lives literally depended on it.)

 

Once you get your brain around the idea that conventional wisdom had it backwards this whole time, it EXPLAINS SO MUCH!

 

Like why people who have gone Paleo/keto/gotten to a healthy weight (read, moved their needle closer to Energy Burner side) say they have so much more energy - they literally do! They are burning their energy now instead of storing it.

 

Like why many people DO experience success with a restricted-calorie diet, even a high-carb one. What's the first thing everyone cuts when they are trying to lose weight? Candy, beer, pizza, mashed potatoes, pastries, snack chips, sugared soda ... in other words, the most refined carbs available in the modern diet, that cause the strongest insulin reaction, that triggers fat storage. For someone who is already a moderate Energy Burner, this might be all that's needed to lose the weight. Keeping it off...well, we know how that goes. The price of 6-pack abs is eternal vigilance, or something like that.

 

And why so many who follow restricted-calorie, HCLF diets are exhausted, miserable, sick, and even when at their goal weight have a high body fat percentage. We've all heard that "crash diets only make you lose muscle" - well, now we know why!  Like those starved rats, the insulin response to all those healthy whole grains and fat-free snacks guarantees that fat is conserved and muscle burned in desperation. It also guarantees that when calories are no longer restricted, they go right back into storage on the butt and belly.

 

It even explains those marathoners who see their body fat increase over time as they get older. Years of carbo-loading has eventually caused insulin resistance and is triggering fat storage in spite of their bodies' obvious energy needs. 

 

Food for thought (haha, see what i did there?) If you're still reading, bless you and may all your carbs burn. If not:

 

TL:DR: every body is different, but if you're fat, it's the carbs. Start cutting them out. How much depends on your body. Might just need to get rid of the junk, might need to get rid of a lot more.

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"'It's time for a few small repairs,' she said." - Shawn Colvin

 

 

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45 minutes ago, Bookish Badger said:

So they aren't lean because they are so active, they are so active because they are lean (don't store fat easily). How's that for turning an assumption on it's head?

 

45 minutes ago, Bookish Badger said:

So they aren't fat because they're sedentary, they're sedentary because they're fat. 

Holy shit! This is so cool! I love it when you find out a commonly held belief is actually the opposite of reality. This makes so much sense. Thanks for sharing, really interesting!

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Great. I was already side-eyeing the vegan book I'm reading for suggesting a diet that's 80% carbs because it's full of other nonsense, but this just adds to it. But this is totally fascinating and I feel like I need to read this book now.

 

Brb, never eating carbs again.

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