Posted in Emotional Eating, Fitness, Food, Menu Planning, Overeating, Self-Reflection, Weight Watchers

I’m eating the damn salad.

wp-1503509607481Before I joined Weight Watchers, I made this week’s menu — breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks–all mapped out. Well, then Tuesday rolled around and suddenly my plan sucks. I was so frustrated.

First of all, Little Elfkin is eating like mad–she must be heading for a growth spurt because I was about to dig into my breakfast when her cherubic voice inquired “Mama? More egg? Please?”

“Yes, Baby, you can have more egg…”

So, I tracked one egg, one tortilla for breakfast–and it was 5 points–not bad! But by the time I got to work, I was hungry again. I stopped at the gas station and picked up what I thought was a healthy alternative–a turkey sausage, egg, and cheese sandwich and a couple of espressos. Well, no 2nd breakfast for this Hobbit! That breakfast sandwich would’ve been 11 points, which would’ve put me at 16 points, then the espressos were another 6, so just in BREAKFAST I would’ve used up 22/40 points (or 55%) of my daily budget on one meal. *fizzle*

I skipped the breakfast sandwich! Go me!

1st break rolls around and I. Am. Starving. I had 2 espressos and a cup of coffee to try to stave off the hangry but noon couldn’t come soon enough! I had a cheese stick (1 point) and that held me over until noon.

YES! I CAN EAT! HALLELUJAH!

I’d packed a yummy yummy Dole Chopped Salad kit in Sunflower Crunch flavor. It has a sweet onion dressing and a little bit of bacon, so it’s yum yum delicious.

And 22 points for the whole bag. T^T It would’ve been 27, but that number was too scary so I only counted 5 cups instead of 6 1/2 which is more likely…

SERIOUSLY, WW?! SERIOUSLY?!

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I portioned out half the bag and contented myself with the 13 points that it would be. I ate slowly. I was mindful of the flavors in each bite. I drank water and tried to stay in tune with my appetite.

There’s no WAY this is going to be enough food.

And then I stopped. I freaked out a little, but I let my food settle. I let my mind stop racing ahead and just… sat here. Honestly, I started typing this entry out and that’s what really gave me time enough to say “you know what? Maybe it IS enough food.”

So, here I am, 1/3 salad on my plate and I’m full.

Maybe I can do this. Maybe I can finally lose weight.

I need to go for a walk. If you made it this far, I appreciate your listening to my rant. So to speak ūüėČ

Posted in Baby Girl, Fitness, Food, sleep, Weigh Ins/Progress Photos, Weight Watchers

Tracking is such an eye-opening experience

As a commitment to reaching my health and fitness goals, I’ve reinvested in tools and technology. I bought myself a gym membership for my birthday. It’s at Orange Theory Fitness and I am loving it. The environment is upbeat, the time just FLIES by, and I’m able to get 1 really good work out in each week. As I get in better shape, I’ll be adding more work outs based on the work out I do each week, and it’ll only get better from here:

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Against my better judgement, I splurged on a 12-week membership to Weight Watchers (yes, again). I attended the first meeting today and it was good. There are about 14 people that I work with that attend every Tuesday. As a group over the last 12 weeks, they lost over 300 pounds. That’s astonishing! I tracked my food so far today and figured out that part of why I’m not losing weight on my own is because I’ve become delusional about my food quality. I knew my breakfast was “bad” but I didn’t think it was “that bad,” until I tracked it and realized it was more than half a day’s worth of allotted points.

I’ve got a profile going for the next twelve weeks, though, and my “before” pics and measurements. I’ve come to accept that I will constantly be starting over, but if I can shorten each time between quitting and starting to work on my health again, I think I’ll trend in the overall right direction.

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As an inspiration to bring us both towards our best selves, Hubs bought us each a FitBit of our choice. He went for the Fitbit Blaze while I opted for the more minimalistic FitBit Charge 2. (These are not affiliated links, I just put them here for ease of reference.)

I’ve been using the FitBit to track my sleep and it’s been frustrating, to say the least:

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I mean, it’s no wonder I feel addicted to caffeine and energy drinks. Based on the data that I’m getting (and I’ll wait until I get a whole heck of a lot more) I’m seeing that I really need to work on my sleep hygiene. ¬†This will mean targeting an earlier bed time, trying to reduce the time I’m awake in the middle of the night, and generally trying to improve the quality of the sleep that I’m getting.

I have some ideas, but before I can really implement them or know for sure if it’s the right way to go, I need more data–so more to come on that.

Weekly WW Exercise:
Theme: Get Happy

“…just 5 minutes to notice, savor, and record everyday goodness and beauty.”

  1. “We should carpool more often.” – Hubs and I carpooled to the office out of necessity today and it was so nice to hear him express a desire to do so more often. He supported his suggestion by listing, not only the measurable benefits (reduced emissions, reduced wear and tear on the other vehicle, reduced fuel consumption)¬†but the benefit of spending more time together as a couple. He even resolved the work dilemma by volunteering to work from home as necessary so that we don’t have to worry about him working late or whatnot. It was so nice.
  2. Little Elfkin has started counting down to “blast off” in the car. “threeeeee..twoooo…one.. GO DAD!” Hahaha.. she loves it when we can blast off like the rocket in Little Einsteins. She even gets us to join her patting our laps for power. “c’mon, Mom! Pat, pat, pat!” Gosh, it’s crazy to think how well she communicates now compared to a year ago.
  3. “Big hugs, you don’t battle alone. #BattleBuddy” – My friend, Robin, offered me comfort after I posted about the terrible choices I made for breakfast. I really enjoy the camaraderie and support that is gained through having an accountability buddy. We went through our pregnancies together, we’re raising our kids “together,” and we’re fitness friends too. Don’t let anyone tell you the internet is just full of bad people with nefarious intentions.
Posted in Baby Girl, Fitness, Life + Living, Uncategorized, Weight Watchers

1 year update: Cliffnotes

The last year has been a whirlwind. It seems like we were just putting up streamers for Little Elfkin’s first birthday, and here we are planning out the party for her second birthday. (Spoiler: it’s Moana themed.)

What’s Changed:¬†

Little Elfkin has gotten bigger, braver, and much sassier. She has come to the point where she says “NO,” I say “YES!” and she says “FINE.” Teen years are coming earlier and earlier…

I quit my job. No, really. It was a joy working with my customers, but my boss threw me under the bus one-too-many times and I just couldn’t take it anymore. There seemed to be a lot of systemic issues with the business overall, though. It turned into a toxic environment where crying was expected and stress levels were notoriously and consistently high. No one wants that.

I found a new job.¬†I spent 3 months looking for my next career and landed in the tech industry. I’m still getting to know the new business, but I feel like it’s going to be a good fit. It was a little bit of culture shock coming from a super-corporate office into a tech company because the atmosphere is so much more relaxed–but that is part of why it’s so great. It’s like a breath of fresh air.

Our health as a family has changed a lot this year. My weight has changed.¬†I had another miscarriage, but haven’t lost the weight that came with the pregnancy yet. Hubs has some things we’re sorting out and combined, it’s really motivating us to get in shape. We both have FitBits now, I re-joined¬†Weight Watchers¬†and I¬†attend an HIIT class every week at¬†Orange Theory Fitness.¬†

What do I hope to accomplish with this blog?

I really don’t know. I’m on Facebook less and less these days, and on Instagram more, but I just haven’t found a great outlet for¬†connecting with people who want fitness and wellness. I am hoping that by writing here, I’ll be more accountable again and get healthy enough to start reaching other goals. ¬†I’ll flesh out a plan later on but I think that’s as good a place as any to start. At a minimum, I hope to write at least weekly.

 

Posted in Fitness, Food, Life + Living, Weigh Ins/Progress Photos, Weight Watchers

Finisher shirt Friday

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Governor Mark Dayton declared today “Finisher shirt Friday” so myself and a few co workers decided to get in on the fun.  I figure, the more fitness minded people I surround myself with, the better it’ll be.

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Today’s tracking was great. I hit the target for all of my macro nutrients. I’m having withdrawals from sweets, though. Today I had very little in the way of refined sugar, and I had massive cravings, got flushed in the face, and developed a headache… But I didn’t give in.  I was at a manager’s desk. I had grabbed a jar of Hershey kisses and pulled one out. I said to myself “what am I doing,” and put it back.  Even though I was still talking to the manager, I decided to start cutting up a green pepper and eating that instead.  Woo! Will power.

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Nope. None for me, thanks!

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I’m determined to get back to my Warrior self.

Posted in Emotional Eating, Fitness, Food, Life + Living, Menu Planning, Self-Reflection, Strength Training, Weight Watchers

Weekend update

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Posted a blog that was supposed to just be a which hit, but it was longer than I thought. Check it out…

Posted in Fitness, Food, Life + Living, Measurements, Overeating, Strength Training, Weigh Ins/Progress Photos, Weight Watchers

Guess who is almost 240 again? :(

I have a scale in my bathroom and, occasionally, I will weigh myself to make sure that things aren’t getting totally out of hand. Well, I’ve been hovering around 233 for the longest time. ¬†I was STUNNED to step on the scale this morning and see 237.6. ¬†I’m so distraught. ¬†I don’t know of any solid reason for what feels like such a sudden gain. ¬†Sure–I could cover it with a blanket statement about holidays, but I really didn’t feel that off the rails this season. ¬† What’s more is that I’ve actually worked out 3x so far this week with a 4th planned for later today.

There’s nothing to it but to do it, though.. here’s to starting over. ¬†Again. ūüė¶

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I’ve already got Iaido to keep me busy on Wednesdays and Saturdays. ¬†I’m adding more workouts throughout the week, and I need to track again for a while. ¬†Tracking is going to include measuring until I can actually fit into my jeans again. ¬†This is a bit ridiculous.

Posted in College, Counseling, Emotional Eating, Fitness, Food, Life + Living, Overeating, Self-Reflection, Strength Training, Weight Watchers

Hard truths: a brief on why I need to lose weight

Reason one: Because this view is distracting when I’m trying to study:

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Now with problem area highlighted in blue.

Solutions currently in progress:
-iaido
-fitness 19 membership
-conscious eating
-weight loss support group (online)

I just need to keep working on my solutions and the problems will solve themselves.

Posted in Food, New Food, Recipe, Weight Watchers

Super-easy short-cut for WW Grilled Fish with Mango Salsa

Ha!

So, WW is super diligent about watching out for copyright infringement, so I can’t post the whole recipe or directions here, but in the book I bought there’s a recipe for Grilled Fish with Mango Salsa. ¬†There are 6 ingredients and the prep time is probably around 15-20 minutes. ¬†I wasn’t in the mood to de-vein jalape√Īos or deal with slimy mangoes (especially in winter?) so I cheated a little bit. ¬†Here’s the condensed version of WW Grilled Fish with Mango Salsa:

Ingredients:

1- bowl of fruit salsa from your local deli
2- fillets of cod (skin removed)
little bit of lemon juice, plus salt and pepper to taste.

Directions:
Unwrap fish from the paper it comes in, place in a skillet over medium heat. ¬†Drizzle with a little bit of lemon, salt, and pepper. ¬†Depending on the thickness of your fillet, it’ll be ready to flip around 3-5 minutes. ¬†Apply the same techniques to this side – lemon, salt, pepper as desired. ¬†This will be done in about 3-5 minutes as well. ¬†The fish will be done when it can be flaked with a fork and is no longer translucent. ¬†Don’t over-cook the fish or it’ll get rubbery.

Top with spoonfuls of the prepared salsa and enjoy ūüôā

Total time – 10 minutes.

Fish with Mango Salsa

Posted in Food, New Food, Weight Watchers

K.I.S.S. – having a meal plan

When it comes to dinner, sometimes my good intentions go right out the window. ¬†It’s been a long day of doing [x, where x=working, cleaning, or doing nothing] and when it comes to dinner time, even if there’s a “plan” in place, the excuse of “I don’t feeeeeeeeeeeeeel like cooking! *huff/stomp/pout*” comes out.

In this moment, it seems like it would be easier to just pick up the phone or go online and place an order for some sort of sustenance to fill the hungry hole. But what does that sort of decision cost in the way of time and money? And is it REALLY worth the effort? ¬†Let’s break it down:

Our top three options for ‘I dont wanna’ usually include Domino’s, Jimmy John’s, or Wendy’s.

Domino’s:¬†
1 – Large Specialty Pizza, + taxes and delivery, +tip ~$25.00
1 – Side order of¬†parmesan¬†bread bites because we just can’t resist ~ $3
Total: ~$28.00, 30 minutes of waiting, 10 minutes of eating, hours of guilt for spending money we didn’t need to, eating bread bites we didn’t need to, and loading up on greasy cheesy pizza that is essentially nutritionally void. Worth it?

Jimmy John’s:¬†
2 – Bootleggers, + taxes and delivery, + tip ~$14.00
2 – side order of chips because they’re too good to resist, ~$3.00
2 – side order, giant chocolate chunk cookie, ~$4.00
Total: ~$21.00, 10 minutes of waiting, 10 minutes of eating, up to an hour of guilt for spending money we didn’t need to, eating almost 400 calories worth of mayo because I always forget to tell them to leave it off, upset stomach due to the kettle chips and the chocolate chunk–and why? Because we didn’t feel like cooking. Worth it?

Wendy’s
2 – Asiago Chicken Ranch Clubs
1 – 1/4 lb. Classic
1 – side of chili
2 – Softdrinks (small)
Total: ~$15-20, depending on prices and variables in choices; prices are not published online. Wendy’s doesn’t deliver, but they’re up the road from us, less than a mile so we take the time to go down to the car and drive there (yep. you read that correctly), go through the drive-through, and then drive home because we don’t feel like cooking. But we feel like getting dressed, putting shoes on, waiting in line, paying money for food that (again) is nutritionally void, going back home and disposing of all the trash. ¬†Worth it?

See? ¬†When you really take a look at how ‘convenient’ convenience food really¬†isn’t¬†it becomes easier to make meals at home. ¬†One of our new discoveries is from Campbell’s and it’s called ‘Skillet sauces‘ – you just add chicken (or beef, or shrimp) and serve over pasta or rice. ¬†So, the box of rice is a couple bucks and it lasts us a couple months. ¬†This is the first one that we tried, but, we were pretty impressed with it.¬†The skillet sauce packets likely goes on sale, so if you get a chance, you could stash them in the cupboard for days when you just don’t feel like it.

Last night, we were tired and unmotivated and having one of those ‘don’t feel like it’ moments. ¬†I felt the urge rising to call for pizza, but, my new year’s resolutions are to lose weight, save money, and get better at my job. ¬†Well, heyo! ¬†Ordering in goes against two of those objectives. ¬†Keep it simple, stupid–cook at home! ¬†Save time, save money, control portions and nutrition.

I defrosted chicken in the microwave while setting a pot on the stove to boil water for the rice. ¬†I measured the rice and sliced up a cucumber while those two finished. ¬†While the rice started cooking, I sliced up the chicken and browned it in the skillet. ¬†Add the toasted sesame ginger sauce on top and heat through–voila, meal is done. ¬†We went from frozen chicken and two packets of ingredients to a nutritionally sound meal in approximately 20 minutes for a cost less than $3/person.

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When making your new year’s resolutions, flesh them out a bit. ¬†How does having a meal plan or back-up plan take my KISS goal and make it a SMART goal?

S – Specific – I want to save at least $100/month for the next year.

M – Measurable – I saved (by not spending) net $17.00 by not ordering in.

A РAttainable РIf I can continue to make decisions to eat at home like this, I can definitely save over $100/month.  This would include brown-bagging it for lunches and eating breakfast at home, too.

R – Relevant – Preparing and eating food from home, let’s say 4/5 work days, is relevant and applicable to my goals to save money, lose weight (remember I can control portion and nutrition), AND to become better at my job – when I stop to pick something up on the way to work, I usually scoot in a few minutes late. ¬†Being punctual will improve my perception at work, and, perceptions are realities.

T – Time-bound – The time is weekly, adding up to monthly, adding up to the entire year of 2013.

What are some other ideas that you have for quick back-up plans for when you don’t feel like cooking? ¬†Crock-pots are always good because you can just toss in a few ingredients and it does its thing while you do yours. ¬†What else?

Posted in Counseling, Food, Life + Living, Menu Planning, New Food, Recipe, Weight Watchers

Menu Monday: Saffron

The cool thing about seeking counseling is that it doesn’t make you weird. ¬†To prove it, I’m going to write a very NORMAL entry. ¬†Well, aside from Saffron… a spice that is valued in tiny quantities, but dangerous in abundance. ¬†This week, Jeff and I expanded our spicy horizons to include threads of Saffron. ¬†We’ve been talking a lot about things that make us happy, things we enjoy doing as a couple. ¬†One of the things that we really enjoy (time permitting) is cooking together. ¬†While making the menu this weekend, I came across a recipe for “Spanish Chickpea, Tomato, and Kale Stew.” ¬†Interesting.. I thought..

  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/4 tsp saffron threads

Oop.. this recipe is out.. Saffron.  Who just has saffron sitting around in their pantry? *scoff*

  • 2 tsp EVOO
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 1 bell pepper (chopped)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)Wonder how much saffron costs.. I’ve got most of the rest of these ingredients..¬†
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh oregano
    I’ve got dried..I’m sure that’ll do..¬†
  • 1 tbsp smoked or regular paprika
  • 4 cups chopped fresh kale
    HUZZAH! Finally a way to use that bunch that we bought “for smoothies” that’s about to wilt in the crisper drawer…
  • 1/4 cup sherry
    One for you, one for me *glug* ¬†Wait, what¬†is¬†sherry? ¬†Do they sell that at the grocery store? ¬†I’m probably going to have to go to the liquor store.. ugh. OOh! Maybe I can buy some vodka at the same time. ¬†Maybe this recipe isn’t such a lost cause…
  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt

So yeah, reading through the recipe I waffled a couple times on whether we could actually pull this recipe off. ¬†I’d LOVE to show you a picture of our masterpiece all pretty in our matte black bowls… but guess who forgot to go to the liquor store? ¬†Ha. Guess that means we can’t re-enact any scenes from My Drunk Kitchen (Pizza, unlike old coca-cola is best served flat!)

Anyway.. after mulling over the stew recipe (combine saffron + water, set aside, heat onions and bell pepper in the oil until onions start to soften, then stir in all seasonings including saffron-water, add kale and cook, stirring¬†constantly,¬†until either you or the kale are wilted. ¬†Add sherry–to the stew, not your mouth, and cook until almost all the liquid is gone. ¬†Add everything else and bring to a boil. ¬†Cover, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally for about 30 minutes.) ¬†The actual recipe in all of its lovely entirety can be found in the Weight Watchers Points Plus Power Foods Cookbook: 200 Simple & Satisfying Recipes¬†book, on page 188. Copyright Weight Watchers International, Inc. 2011.

The rest of our menu is pretty straight forward with nothing nearly as exotic as saffron stew. ¬†It’s got things like salmon, spaghetti, and meatloaf on it..¬†The good news, though, is that I was able to organize my cupboard in my quest for recipe ingredients. ¬†Isn’t it pretty?

Yeah.. it’s probably wrecked by the time you’re reading this… >_>