Monthly Archives: February 2009

Family pride

We completed another 6 miles this morning!

I was really sore when I woke up, most likely from the past two days of working hard on the treadmill :) But I managed to get myself going and pound out the 6 miles (walking, of course).

I am just so unbelieveably proud of my mom and two aunts for making this commitment for their health and for fun. I emailed them earlier in the week that perhaps we could make this a family tradition. Everyone in our family can run or walk the mini marathon every year if they are able :)

Our family is full of health problems, most of them stemming from obesity but I am hopeful that starting with the four of us, we can turn this thing around. Today’s walk just solidified the pride I have been feeling this week.

We can do it!

Hope you all are having a good Saturday. I had another Green Monster this morning, which wasn’t as good, but I think its because the banana I used wasn’t very ripe that I prefer them to be. I’m thinking about trying a different fruit next time just to see what its like. But I love that I got over a cup of spinach in with breakfast!

Oops, gotta run, catch up with you all later!

Today’s workout and de-”crap”ping my coupons

I met my partner for another amazing treadmill session at the gym today! :)

Once again, I went over there expecting to only do 30 minutes or so and ended up at 65! The only thing holding me back was that I had to get back to work. Otherwise, I could’ve kept going. What an amazing feeling. I’m not so concerned about my upcoming races anymore, it’s going to be fun!

Today was very similar to yesterday, only we warmed up for 0.75 mile (instead of 1.o) and then I ran for 1.25 miles! Then we did pretty much an entire mile of incline challenge (1.0-15.0 and back down) and then I ran again for another 0.75 mile, bringing my running total of our workout to 2.0 miles. I’m so thrilled. I’m sure it won’t be long before I can do those 2 miles all at once without stopping.

Here are my stats (I think, I should really write this stuff down, haha):

Time: 65:00

Distance: 4.25 miles

Calories: 500′ish (according to the treadmill)

Remind me to put “Heart Rate Monitor” on my wishlist!

Friday nights in our household are almost always for grocery shopping (we’re so old). So usually throughout the day, I will pick through my coupons and make decisions (and a list) about what to buy that night. In the spirit of Crap Free Week and Crap Free Living, I have decided to have Crap Free Coupons! I weeded through them all and picked out ones that I knew were not Crap Free Living-friendly, but I won’t let them go to waste, I love sharing coupons with people who need them :)

If you don’t buy it, you won’t eat it. And I’m less likely to buy something if I don’t have a coupon for it. So I figure, it’s a win-win situation. Save money and save crap from going into my body ;-)

We’re having dinner with my parents tonight at Impellizerri’s Pizza, a local favorite. We just ate pizza last Friday (before CFW) plus I know they don’t have any whole wheat crust, so I think I’m going to opt for the grilled chicken salad — that actually sounds good, plus it has olives on it. I’m thinking either Italian or Balsamic on the side for dressing. Watching everyone else eat pizza or bread is going to be a challenge but I’m not worried because I feel good about how I’ve treated my body this week.

I haven’t checked the scale (and don’t plan on it until Monday) but the pants I’m wearing today are huge and it’s only been maybe 2 weeks since I’ve worn them last. Its to the point where I think I should get rid of them!

Have a good weekend everyone, be back soon…I have another 6 mile walk planned tomorrow with my family in the morning and then my first day of 31 Days of Yoga starts on Sunday!

March challenge

I have decided to join Tina in her 31 Days of Yoga challenge!

I love yoga very much and it has been a while since I’ve done any kind of structured practice, so I’m anxious to get going again. When I do yoga regularly, I feel really good and it definitely keeps me limber; it’s also very calming for me. I’m really excited!

The requirements are that you do at least 20 minutes of yoga every single day in the month of March. This is going to be challenging for me, especially when I go to New York at the end of the month, but I know I am capable! What a good way keep up my workouts when I’m out of town too…hopefully our hotel room is big enough for me to spread out a bit :)

On Sunday morning, I’ll be waking up a few minutes early to start my day off with some yoga. I haven’t decided yet if I will do my own thing, use a video or a download from  yogadownload.com — I already have one on my computer, could get more. We’ll see! If any of you are interested, you should go check out Carrots ‘n Cake to join in on the fun!

I feel like Popeye

This week, thanks to a feature post on Healthy Ashley‘s site, I discovered the wonderful Angela of Oh She Glows! I’ve been following her site for the past few days and I’m so glad I found her :) She’s also doing a Crap Free Week right now to detox from sugar, but she’s a couple days ahead of me. Anyway, for breakfast, she’s been having what she refers to as “Green Monsters” aka breakfast smoothies that include greens. I had seen people do spinach smoothies before and had always wanted to try one and for some reason she inspired me to do so today.

fridaybreak3

Here’s what went into my smoothie, taken directly from Angela’s site, with some slight modifications:

1 cup milk

A few ice cubes

Two big handfuls of spinach leaves

1 tbsp ground flax

1 medium banana

Oh…my…word. This was so good it made me wonder why the heck I haven’t been drinking these everyday! What an awesome way to get veggies in first thing in the morning. She was right too, I could not taste the spinach at all, it tasted very much like a banana smoothie. Every once in a while, I could feel the texture of the spinach (and flax) but I think I could’ve blended it a bit longer. Still, that wasn’t bad or anything. Plus look how cool the green color is! ;-)

I also had a slice of bread (not toasted) with a tbsp of natural peanut butter. This breakfast was awesome and I can’t wait to make more of these smoothies in the future. Especially in the summer time when its warmer, although yesterday we were in the 60′s (raining and windy though). The temps are going back down today unfortunately but hopefully Spring is right around the corner (please)!

I just feel so good about starting off my morning that way. They are right when they say breakfast sets the tone. If you really enjoy breakfast and it makes you feel good, you are likely to feel that way the rest of the day. How cool. I’m thinking about having another tomorrow and using different fruits. Yay!

Happy Friday :)

Is it really Day 4?

I can’t believe it’s already been 4 whole days of Crap Free Week! Honestly, this doesn’t feel like a Crap Free Week. It feels like the way I want to live. I’m so glad I did this and I’m really glad Caitlin, Lindsay, and others did it too because it inspired me to create my own CFW. I think from the end of the week on, I shall refer to it as Crap Free Living. I honestly don’t think I want another diet soda or artificially sweetened pudding again. :) I’ll be going to Starbucks with my family tomorrow and the strange thing is, all I can think about is a nice hot tea! What happened to me? Ha ha.

Yesterday was a great day even after my breakfast debacle. I’m just glad I ate wholesome foods, even if they didn’t fill me for as long as I would’ve liked.

I mentioned scarfing these down around 9:30 yesterday…

thursdayamsnack4

 

I also had a cup of black coffee beforehand — might as well just commit this to memory because I have coffee every day during the week but I have switched to tea on the weekends :)

Somehow I managed to make it to 11:00, which is when I drug out my lunch. I’m really loving my lunches this week but can already tell I’m growing tired of sandwiches, so I think at the store this weekend, I will plan accordingly. I’m definitely going to pick up some veggie burgers and I still have salmon burgers in the freezer. I’ve also got some stuff to make some big salads so I hope to do that at least one day next week for lunch.

Today was a turkey sandwich (w/ spinach, 2% cheese and light mayo on whole wheat), some carrots + hummus, orange, and a pickle.

thurslunch

 

I didn’t end up finishing the carrots because I got full, so there are a few in the fridge for another time.

Aruond 2:00, we had a party here at work for which I was one of the hostesses. I brought fruit & veggies of course. The apples & strawberries were a big hit but not too many people touched the veggie tray :( I already had to use up some veggies from my previous one so now I’ll have to deal with this. I’m really going to get sick of broccoli, carrots & celery if I’m not careful. Perhaps I can come up with a creative way to use them? Hmm…

Anyway, at the party, I had some apple slices (pre-cut) and a few strawberries and some nice hot apple cinnamon herbal tea. It really hit the spot. I was having an afternoon workout though, so before I left I ate what has become my daily yogurt. Another new flavor!

thursdaypmsnack1

This is the Voskos Greek Yogurt in Honey Vanilla Bean. I didn’t know what to think of it at first — it’s a smaller container than I’m used to (even though I had Blueberry earlier in the week) and I thought it kind of looked like ranch dressing! Don’t you think?

thurspmsnack2

 

But I’m glad to say this yogurt was PHENOMENAL! I loved the flavor, the vanilla and honey really go well together, neither overpowered the other.

Its still not the thick greek yogurt consistency that I like, but it’s definitely not runny like Stonyfield. I would definitely buy this one again, not to mention the Blueberry. Can’t wait to try other flavors and even the plain :)

I kicked some major butt at the gym yesterday afternoon but it was slow going at first. Around 4:30, I was kind of tired and we started walking on the treadmills at 3.8 and it seemed harder than it was. Luckily my training partner was there (I’m growing quite fond of her!) and she started jogging, so I did too. We walked for a mile, then ran for about 1.10 miles, then we walked again at 3.8 and increased our incline gradually up to 15.0 and then back down gradually too. Then we did some intervals. I had originally thought I would be lucky to get 30 minutes in and guess what…we did 75! We also took some time out after our workout to do some stretching because we knew we’d need it.

Time: 75:00

Distance: 5.12 miles

Calories burned: 500+ (according to the machine)

Wowzah. In a good way! Lets just say when I got home last night I was totally ready for dinner.

I didn’t know it until this week, but I have to declare my undying love for Garbanzo Beans! I knew I liked them but now I love them :) I decided to have my beans + brown rice combo again, only as a side and a pork chop for some more protein. It definitely feels good to eat protein after a tough workout, I could almost feel my muscles repairing!

thursdaydinner1

 

I ended up going for 2nds on the beans, so I ate probably twice what you see there. They are so good! I definitely have to get those again. I would love to put those on a salad :)

After dinner, I did the dishes and some laundry and then plopped down on the couch to catch up on two of our favorite shows: “Big Love” and “United States of Tara” they were both good episodes too. Between the two, I got up (which was hard!) and made myself some Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride tea and a little dessert/snack:

thursdaydessert

 

Just a little unsweetened applesauce topped with some cinnamon and a handful of Multigrain Cheerios. This really hit the spot — I can already tell my sweet (fake) cravings are ceasing, this was perfectly sweet enough for me, plus I got another fruit serving out of it!

You know, if nothing else becomes of this Crap Free way of life, I love the way it makes me feel. The bottom line for me is that if I eat crap, I’ll feel like crap. If I eat mostly real food with no added junk, I feel good. You are what you eat?

Have a good day everybody, thanks for stopping by!

What holds you the best?

This morning, I got up a little earlier to review my anatomy notes, so I decided a good brain-food breakfast was in order…

thursdaybreak1

 

I made an omelet with 2 eggs, 1/2 cup chopped peppers and a slice of 2% cheddar cheese (topped with habanero ketchup-no HFCS). Then to round out the meal, I had 2 slices of whole wheat toast with 1 tbsp black cherry preserves, and 1/2 cup grapes.

Now, this meal was FANTASTIC tastewise, pleasurewise and I really enjoyed eating at the table while studying my notes.

Problem is, a mere three hours (not even a complete three I don’t think but close), I was HUNGRY. And not just in a “I might need a little snack to hold me over until lunch” way, it was bad. I inhaled a bag of almonds (100 calorie pack) and then chugged water all through the 10:00 hour to make until 11 to eat lunch. I couldn’t believe it.

It got me thinking, even though I ate that much, its obviously not protein that holds me in the morning. I used to think it was.

But this meal and other egg or protein-based meals I’ve had in the past for breakfast have not worked as well as a good bowl of cereal with fruit and certainly not as good as oatmeal or anything topped with peanut butter. The pumpkin oatmeal I make almost always lasts me until lunch, about 5 hours. I don’t mind eating a snack between breakfast and lunch sometimes (I usually do) but this was uncomfortable and it really shocked me. I suppose it could’ve been something else that was off today.

What is your experience with this? I know everyone is different so I can’t think what works for some people would for me, I’m just curious. I think I know what to do from now on. Stick with what works :) I still really enjoy eggs, but I think I may hard boil them for snacks or salads and eat them at restaurants or for dinner sometime. Or perhaps as a side to a more fibrous breakfast.

There’s another fact, I think it is a combination of carbohydrates and fiber that keep me going in the morning. This whole wheat bread that I bought, sadly, only has 3 grams of fiber for 2 slices. That’s just not enough, it’s no wonder. I hope to find another kind next time that has some more. Any suggestions?

Crap Free, Day 3

Can I say how much I love NOT eating crap?! :)

wednesdaybreak4

 

I woke up early yesterday to make real STOVE TOP OATS! I was so excited. It takes a few extra minutes but it is so worth it because they come out the perfect consistency and stirred up right and everything, which I know I can be really picky about. Unless I’m in a hurry, I doubt I’ll go back to microwaving. Woah!

These are pumpkin oats (1/2 cup oats, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup 1% milk, 1/4 cup oats) topped with pumpkin pie spice, milled flaxseed, 2 tbsp raisins, 1 tbsp sliced almonds, and 1 tbsp PB :)

This breakfast held me so well, I’m thinking about having oats almost every day because there’s nothing else quite like it in terms of lasting power, for me. You’ll hear more about that later.

wedlunch1

 

Lunch was a PB&J (preserves, haha) sandwich on whole wheat with some veggies + hummus (ended up only eating the celery and one piece of broccoli — think they tasted old), some Annie’s cheddar bunnies and an orange.

This lunch was fun to eat, tasted good and lasted me 4 hours again, woo hoo!

For my afternoon snack, I re-tried a yogurt I hadn’t had in a while. My only problem with Stonyfield is that it tends to be a little on the runny side. The taste is very good though and vanilla is one of my favorites from what I remember. I’m definitely a thicker yogurt person so I may not get these again for a while, but I would like to have some other flavors just to change things up a bit from time to time.

wedpmsnack

wedpm2

I topped this with some blackberries which ended up being a nice addition! I broke them apart with my spoon as I ate the yogurt and it started changing colors, hehe. Ok, getting a little too excited there…

Yesterday I faced my first real challenge of CFW in going out to a restaurant for dinner. I was excited because we went to Red Lobster, which I had never been to before because my husband is not a big fan of seafood. I ended up ordering the Garlic jumbo grilled shrimp which came with a side salad (I had honey mustard on the side and had less than a tablespoon by dipping my fork in it). The side salad was ice berg but was at least topped with cucumber, tomato and red onion; I tossed the croutons. My shrimp were very juicy and light, not quite the buttery explosion I was afraid of but with this particular dish I was concerned that if I’d ordered it without the spread, the flavor might not have been there. It also came with some wild rice pilaf and steamed broccoli (no butter, yay).

My meal was in general crap free (grilled shrimp, veggies, rice, salad) but I do have to think about the butter (trans fat?), wild rice (not sure if it was whole grain) and salad dressing (HFCS? it wasn’t light though). Since I didn’t have an ingredients list in front of me, I’m just going to say this meal was an exception, hopefully the only one I’ll have the rest of the week.

I just checked the Red Lobster website and they have nutritional information! Whether its accurate or not, I’m pleased that I ended up ordering one of the lighest things on the menu, without even knowing ahead of time, yippee! The website is impressive; they have a meal calculator, smart tips about dining, cooking, and facts about seafood and Omega-3′s. I wish all restaurants were this caring.

I didn’t take a picture at dinner because I was with my in-laws who don’t know about the blog (yet) so I didn’t want them to think I was crazy. I think I am finally getting comfortable with the format and everything though, so hopefully soon I can share this site with everyone :)

After dinner, we went to our beloved Louisville Palace and saw the Celtic Woman concert which was amazing. I didn’t know too much about the group going into the show but I’m a big fan of Irish traditional music so I gave it a shot. They were amazing, they do a lot of singing, dancing and the costumes alone were worth going to the show for. I had a really good time.

When I got home, it had been about 5 hours since I’d eaten anything so I was a bit hungry even though bedtime was soon. So I made myself this snack, plus some lemon herbal tea and laid in bed reviewing my anatomy notes (midterm was today, easy as pie).

weddessert2

 

All in all, another good day…

Calories are what counts

Wanted to share this article with you from one of my local news stations reporting on a study originally reported in the New England Journal of Medicine. The studies show that no particular diet (low-carb, low-fat, etc.) had a better effect on weight loss than another; just those who counted calories and stuck with their plan were successful in the long term.

What Counts Most When Dieting? Calories

Study Followed 800 Adults On Different Diets For 2 Years

While calories are the biggest number and perhaps the most important, lets not forget about those other important numbers. It is still very important to get enough fiber, healthy fat, protein, and carbohydrates (complex) in your diet and also getting the right vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat.

You can count calories by eating processed foods out of boxes all the time and you will lose weight. But the added, artificial ingredients will make it harder and could end up adversely affecting other areas of your health such as blood pressure, especially if you are sodium sensitive. Keep it all balanced!

There are calorie calculators off to the side where you can find out how many calories you need to take in to lose weight and how many to maintain your current weight, plus an activity calculator. It seems pretty accurate and I had fun trying it out.

Have you seen Goop?

I just read an article on People.com about Gwyneth Paltrow receiving criticism for her website GOOP. They are only criticizing her because of who she is, not because of the website’s content. I checked it out for myself and I think its really neat, I’m even considering signing up for the weekly newsletter :) Don’t her critics know that they are just going to help draw more people to the site?

Celebrity status aside, I love that Gwyneth loves food and her website includes recipes, restaurants to visit in big cities and some tips about life and living from her experience and from the wisdom of others. Her site is divided into different categories: Make (recipes, food ideas), Do (lifestyle/fitness/health), Get (fashion and gift ideas), Be (thoughts on life), See (book recommendations, art exhibits), and Go (things to do in NY, LA and London including restaurant suggestions).

Since this is food blog world, I really think you guys would like it, so give it a look!

Goop: Nourish the inner aspect by Gwyneth Paltrow

Happy almost Friday!

Do artificial sweeteners confuse the body?

I just found this great article on Tina‘s blog today and found it worth sharing, especially considering my CFW status:

Artificial Sweeteners: They’re Enough to Give Some People a Headache

Crap! Extra chewing gum has aspartame?! Glad I read this…I won’t throw it out but I won’t chew it for the rest of CFW. Darn it.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 55 other followers