Last year, for some unbeknownst reason, Davis decided to temporarily suspend EXB (Exercise Biology) as a major. I am fully aware that I’m completely biased, seeing as how that was one of my majors, but [to me] it was quite possibly one of the stupidest decisions the school has ever made.
EXB changed my life, and I’m very sure that I’m not the only one. I loved almost all the EXB courses I took (with the exception of biomechanics, but that was due to the fact that I hadn’t taken the prerequisite or the recommended co-requisite yet due to my quarterly attempts at academic suicide), and I still carry the things that I learned from those classes with me today. My decision to change my original major to EXB was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. The teaching and instruction that I received from the amazing professors in that department remain unparalleled, and I’ve taken a crap ton of classes (105 different classes in my four years of undergrad alone >_> let’s not factor in grad school and med school), so I really think that’s saying something. It’s 1/2 of how I started exercising regularly (so I wouldn’t be a disgrace to my major, and also because my ex offered to be my free personal trainer, so why the hell not).
I’m actually lying about not having a clue as to why they suspended it as a major. Word on the street was that people thought it was “just another premed major, and the school already had enough of those.” Seeing as how I’m a poster child for that very reasoning because I’m currently in med school, I can’t argue against the fact that it is indeed an amazing major to be under if med school is indeed your goal, but it’s also produced a whole ton of dentists, pharmacists, physical therapists, athletic trainers, personal trainers, physician assistants, nurses…(I could go on, but I’ll stop there.)
Please don’t take that major away. :[ It’s honestly one of the most unique majors in the school (with the funnest, most informative and applicable classes, I might add).
Loosely related, but I helped out at a women’s health fair the other day and while I was there, I decided to check out what my bone density was. (I also got to see just how sun-damaged my face had gotten. Apparently, it’s not nearly as terrible as I thought. Mayhaps all those years of my parents telling me to keep my face out of the sun so I wouldn’t get any more freckles/get any uglier weren’t all for naught after all.) Anyway, back to bones. Once upon a time (senior year of undergrad), Dr. Shaffrath called me out in the middle of EXB 117 to say that I was an awesome human being. (I still wish I’d recorded that lecture, because I’m pretty sure it’d cheer me up even on my worst days.)
His reasons for doing so were because I’d somewhat recently volunteered to be the test subject for the hypothermia lab (it is just as it sounds; I basically submerged all but my head in a tank of cold water for an hour so we could monitor how my body responded to it vs. someone who exercised on a cycle ergometer next to me in the same tank). Usually, shivering is the beginning of the end and once you start doing that, you’re done for if you stay in said conditions for too much longer. But! We discovered that I was at the perfect body fat:muscle ratio that my shivering actually managed to raise my core body temperature. Pretty sweet. (Super-fun labs, didn’t I tell you? It’s been 3.5 years but I still remember all that pretty effing clearly.)
I’m really bringing this all up to preface my bone density results. I did a presentation in Cantonese for PHAC that year too, to educate the public (e.g. our patients) about osteoporosis. As an Asian female with a fairly small frame, a family history of osteoporosis (although I think it’s due in part to the fact that she’s sedentary/had to take corticosteroids for a while) and possible low calcium intake (I may be lactose intolerant, and I haven’t been eating/drinking much stuff with Ca lately), I have several risk factors for osteoporosis.
But hooray for weight-bearing activity, right? Your calcium stores peak at around the age of 25, so start building em’ so you’ll have farther to fall (especially if you’re female)!
I guess 0.9 isn’t too shabby. (My friend was at 1.5, so I’m really curious as to what she does. Mayhaps I should increase my calcium intake and start kicking telephone poles.)
- 0 to -1: normal bone density
- -1 to -2.5: osteopenia (early osteoporosis)
- -2.5 or less: osteoporosis
So this is my public service announcement to everyone:
- Prevention is key!
- Make sure you get adequate calcium + vitamin D.
Up to 1 yo: 210-270 mg
1-3 yo: 500 mg
4-8 yo: 800 mg
9-18 yo: 1300 mg
19-50 yo: 1000 mg
51+: 1200 mg
400-1000 IU/day for adults (it’s safe for anyone older than 1 yo to take up to 2000 IU/day)
- Weight-bearing activity!
- Don’t smoke!
As usual, my grill recipes don’t really get measurements. (Sorry.) Slowly but surely, I’m making my way through my stores of frozen meat! I threw in some red/orange/yellow peppers for color. :D
Grilled Lemon-Dijon Chicken
1) Add all of the above into a sandwich bag of chicken breasts/thighs. Let marinate for 30 minutes to an hour.
2) Throw it onto a Foreman grill (or into a pan…) and cook til the center is no longer pink.
It can trigger the development of schizophrenia and other bipolar disorders, so this whole “crazy cat lady” stereotype does actually come from somewhere.
I wanted to use up my orange juice for something super-quick and healthy, so I found this recipe! To make it more like an actual parfait, you can layer the chia pudding with the strawberries, but I slept in a little and didn’t want to be late for mandatory class, so…yeah. :D I also neglected to stir it up a lot, so that’s why it’s all clumpy. :x
Orange Chia Pudding (Parfait)
-2 tbsp chia seeds
-3/4 cup orange juice
-1/2 banana, sliced
-2 strawberries, diced
1) Put orange juice + chia seeds in a bowl (I used a mason jar) and stir. Let sit for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2) Add the fruit!
When you spend so much of your time sitting around and studying diseases in every system, you’re for the most part bound to eventually get paranoid and start self-diagnosing. I’ve actually managed to somewhat avoid this because entering that powerlifting competition is pretty good motivation to not slack off on my workouts (as is the whole cutting weight so I’ll be in the weight class I want to compete in). That and the fact that a couple friends took over my BJJ class with me, so now we learn BJJ & wrestling and then beat each other up. I end up looking like I’m in an abusive relationship and my friends ask if everything’s okay with me until I answer with something along the lines of, “I got into a fight, but don’t worry. You should see his bruises. :D”
It’s definitely a good workout. I like to think these activities build character (+ strength…and keeps me in shape.).
However, sitting around for hours and hours on end probably isn’t all that great, especially when you’re studying about blood clots. Here’s how I’ve been dealing with it.
- Drink a whole lot of fluid + keep self well-hydrated.
I’m usually actually pretty dehydrated, so this helps me to…not be. If I’m full of liquid, I’m less likely to eat when I’m not hungry (works well for my stinking diet; I hate not being able to eat everything on sight ;_; but this is definitely healthier for me, haha). And of course, if I have to get up every hour or so to pee, there’ll be less of a chance for blood to pool in my legs. Yepyep.
- Study while on ellipticals/stationary bike.
It’s usually the ellipticals, because then my arms can move a little too. People tell me this does not work, but I’ve been doing it since senior year of undergrad and it’s been pretty awesome at helping me to memorize things. It also means I need to stay on top of things so I’ll actually have things to put in front of me to study/memorize while I exercise. (Since I hate cardio with a burning passion, the studying part helps it to go by a little faster, or I’d honestly never do it. ._.)
- Practice Tahitian/hula while studying.
Somewhat self-explanatory. If I’m doing stationary hip circles/figure-8′s, I get to throw in a little dance practice/exercise while I’m studying. It also keeps me awake, because I’ve definitely been known to fall asleep in my chair while reading my notes. (Yep, it’s really that riveting. Or I’m really just that tired.)
In other news, I do believe they received my registration information on time. Looks like I will be competing on June 1st after all! :D
About a year and a half ago, during a very short weekend where I ran back from NJ to CA (by ran, I really mean flew), my aunt had a ginormous Thanksgiving gathering of sorts with all kinds of food. :O It was pretty awesome. Among those was a Swiss Apple Pudding (well, two of em’) that my uncle made. What makes this recipe more awesome = there are two ways to make it. (One for the lazy/pressed-for-time, and one for if you actually want to make a legit one.)
Swiss Apple Pudding
-1 cup flour
-1 cup sugar
-3/4 tsp baking powder
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1/2 tsp ginger
-1/2 tsp nutmeg
-1/8 tsp cloves, ground
-1/4 cup butter or margarine
-1/2 cup water
1) Preheat oven to 350.
2) Peel, core and slice apples. Distribute apple slices evenly in pan. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and spices. Add egg and mix until crumbly.
3) Cover apples with flour mixture. Dot with butter and sprinkle with 1/2 cup water.
4) Bake for 30-40 minutes or until apples are tender and top is golden brown.
Version for Busy Individuals
1) Layer in sliced apples onto pre-made crust. Put in pudding mix and follow those instructions. ;]
We do a number of these. :O But this one was mainly geared towards kids! The Sports Med + Emergency Med clubs teamed up to it together, and I think it turned out rather well! We had a helicopter, an ambulance and a fire truck for them to explore, obstacle courses, fitness testing, free lunch, helmets + water bottles… If anything, the parents seemed really grateful that we managed to tire their kids out. :D
I decided to go with a several friends to a country bar the other night (definitely a first for me) since we really wanted to find a place to dance. There are no salsa clubs within a 3 hour radius, so we made do with what we had. I got to ride a mechanical bull (har har) and beat everyone else who tried in terms of staying on the longest (hooray for horseback-riding and pole, perhaps?). This bar in question apparently has midget wrestling on certain nights.
Yep, you read that correctly. Midget wrestling. That’s apparently a thing.
M: I’m sure you can enter it next time they have it…
F: Whatta dick!
M: BURN! Just kidding. The bull will be sweet though.
F: Yeah, we’ll see how long I can stay on.
M: I have full confidence that you would dominate a midget wrestling match. Or a women’s mud wrestling match, for that matter. They can’t handle the strength!
F: Even against _____*? She used to actually wrestle.
M: Maybe not her. She’s in a different weight class anyway.
F: Oh, true that. Hooray! Maybe I could win that $500 in jello wrestling too. Extra monies would be nice!
M: Yeah! Keep training so you can take advantage of an opportunity someday.
*I’m leaving her un-named, but she’s a girl in our class who won $500 earlier this year in a jello wrestling contest. She used to wrestle in college(? high school?) and is pretty much a beast with years of experience on me (which isn’t hard, since I’ve really only learned the double-leg takedown thus far).
Lately, some of my friends have been trying to get me to drink, although I’m not really sure why, since I’m sure they’re well aware that I hate the taste of alcohol and would much rather eat a bunch of food instead. Unfortunately, this cannot be the case because I’m still trying to cut weight right now. (This deserves a whole ‘nother post, but suffice to say, I suck at losing weight and I hate dieting.)
B: Why don’t you try just one drink?
F: Because alcohol tastes like crap and I’m trying to cut weight right now?
B: It’s just one drink! And it’s empty calories.
F: How is that even an argument? That’s a huge waste of calories that I could be putting toward something that actually has nutritional value. And could be something that actually tastes good.
Needless to say, they didn’t really get anywhere with me. I tried about 2 sips of a drink called “Mountain Mama” (which in theory sounded like it’d be good, but no) and gave it away.
I had 3 test subjects for these and they’re all still alive and happy, so hooray! I say this only because I super-adapted it from here, as in took out a bunch of stuff (e.g. didn’t add any sugar whatsoever) and probably used a lot more strawberries + bananas than it actually called for. They turned out well though! My friends were happy eating em’ plain, or with Nutella, or white chocolate peanut butter (I gave em’ choices, haha).
Strawberry Banana Bread
-1/4 cup EVOO
-1/2 cup strawberries, mashed
-1/2 cup bananas, mashed
-1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
-1/2 cup rolled oats
-2 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp salt
1) Preheat oven to 350F. Beat eggs until frothy. Stir in oil, sugar, strawberries and bananas.
2) In separate bowl, whisk together flour, oats, baking powder and salt.
3) Combine wet and dry ingredients. Stir just until moistened.
4) Spoon into a greased mini loaf pan or muffin tins. Bake for 15 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test. Wrap well and allow to ripen for a day.
Alright, so I found this recipe card at Kroger and was overjoyed because I happened to buy a red snapper fillet on sale a while back (it was chillin’ in my freezer). I’m currently trying to eat all the stuff in my refrigerator before I buy anything new (also because I’m going back home in about a month), so it was perfect!
The original recipe actually called for:
- Walnuts, which I thought I had, but I apparently donated it to the cause (aka to make carrot cake for my friend’s birthday) a while back, so I subbed it with cashews.
- Garlic (…I still don’t have any), so I subbed that with garlic powder
- Seedless green grapes, but let’s face it, I’m too poor to be all fancy.
Snapper with Roasted Grapes & Cashews
-red snapper fillet
-seedless red grapes
-2 tbsp Earth Balance (or butter)
-freshly ground black pepper
1) Preheat oven to 400. Place fillet in baking pan.
2) In a large bowl, toss together grapes, cashews (or walnuts), garlic (…or garlic powder), Earth Balance (or butter), salt, pepper + thyme. Pour onto fish.
3) Bake for 15-20 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.
4) If you used fresh garlic cloves, lightly mash them with a fork before serving.