Category Archives: Healthy Eating
So, I kinda disappeared for a while there, huh? I decided to get myself back on here and back on track. And just love that my last post started with “I’m baaaaack!”. I was at that time but apparently not again for the next 6 months!!! Oops, sawry!
The wagon…fell off, banged my arse, got a concussion and then just lay there on the road allowing myself to be run over by several other wagons instead of picking myself up and getting on those!
No excuse, but an explanation: I moved. Far. From Ontario to New Brunswick. And it was expensive, tedious and not something we are going to repeat any time soon. My husband cleverly chose this time for his 2 month visit with his family back in Japan. Ok, ok, it was decided upon mutually because that timing made the most sense for both of us! We packed our life up together, he left the country and I dealt with the movers and moving. And believe it or not, I wanted it to work out that way for selfish reasons. Really selfish. I had in my head how things were supposed to go and I didn’t want to give up the way I saw it all in my head! Ha ha ha! Was I little OCD about it? (Or CDO, as it should be!!!) Only a little and if you were not in my head, it didn’t look like I had control over the situation at all…but there is always method in my madness, ladies and gents. I was in complete control. Just as I wanted to be.
So I moved across a chunk of the country while my husband travelled to the other side of the planet. And I stayed with amazing friends who gave me a roof for my head, a bed for my sleep, and a basement for my crap. They had insisted so I could take my time looking for a place to live and job hunt. I found the new home just before my husband came back and found a job shortly thereafter. It was a ride and a half.
Sadly, neither a calorie burning nor a point counting ride. Major oops.
But I am back. I did slowly gain all the weight back, but no more than where I had started…actually I am thankful that I am at least 2 pounds under where I had been when I started this blog. Just the same, not letting myself off that easily. The old starting point no longer counts in my opinion; my current weight will be my official starting point for beginning again!
The point counting starts again tomorrow. And no giving up, no excuses. The major upheaval in our lives has past, we are settled and routine has taken hold. Time to get back to where I had been before and keep going! While I would love to join WW to go to meetings, my current budget is looking at me saying, “Uh, I don’t THINK so!”, therefore I will push myself to get back on track online and keep at it.
I missed everyone! Watch it…I am going to be stalking your blogs, looking for inspiration, motivation, conversation and mainly just to be back!!!
Here we gooooooo!!!
Another week has come and gone and although this past week was something of a fail, it was not as epic a fail as I thought.
I stayed within my points and calorie counts on both WW and MyFitnessPal, yet at one point during the week when I gave in and decided to weigh myself, it appeared that I had put on 5 pounds!!! I almost fainted and got so angry at myself! I sort of feel like I don’t know what I did wrong, but looking at some of my food choices, I think I gave in to things that I didn’t need to give in to as often as I did. I didn’t run out to a fast food joint or anything like that, but even though I didn’t exceed the limits set for me, I went for fewer fruits and veggies than I have been. That is ok, it was a slap in the face to myself (insert hilarious mental picture here) and having experienced one setback means that I don’t ever want to experience it again!
I worked hard to get back on track and ended up taking off 3 of those pounds before my weigh day. So, I have to report that I had a net gain of 2 pounds (said with deep sigh and hanging of head in a resigned, sad kind of way). Not as bad as 5 pounds, but not as good as a loss of 2 or more! I am firmly back on the wagon this week, buckled in, holding on and don’t want to fall off again anytime soon!! The things I am going to tweak are: making sure that I consistently ensure I drink a full amount of water every day and gobbling up lots of plant life (if you suddenly got a mental image of a cartoon giant me wreaking havoc on a jungle that I am towering over, rest assured, you are not alone…I thought the exact same thing!) to ensure more efficient fuel burning. Oh, and walking a lot more. Like tons.
Speaking of walking, I think my recent (two days ago) trip to Toronto played a big role in helping to clear off some of that weight that caused such panic, fear and all around mental anguish (<–have we not seen this type of drama queen-like exaggeration somewhere before?). My husband had to go up for the day for work, so I decided it was a good excuse to tag along and spend the day doing my own thing, just wandering around, exploring with no one else to bore with my aimless wanderings, no time constraints other than catching the train at the end of the day, finding a cafe to have tea in or a restaurant to stop at and nibble on some lunch. I did both. While not a cafe, I did head to a McDonald’s that I know has outlets for people to plug in things such as mobile phones one used too much on the train so are now really low on battery power before it was even noon. Oh, and at that Rotten Ronnie’s, I managed to be there for zero WW points! I ordered a tea and nothing more. In the restaurant category, I found a little sushi restaurant to eat at as well and thoroughly enjoyed a really low cal lunch.
All in all, I sometimes tend to be a little daft like a dog who just doesn’t stop doing what it enjoys and so does it beyond the point of reason (Stupid dogs: play, swimming, etc. Stupid me: walking on concrete for hours). I walked all over downtown T-dot and well, behold the result of ignoring my angry feet when they pleaded with me to stop:
Yep, that is what happens when left to my own devices to explore and wander without a goal or a plan. Although walking around on concrete that much is not the greatest feeling for the tootsies, I was so happy to see those numbers!
Oh, and the train to Toronto leaves really early in the mornings. So early the sun doesn’t even think it is right to be up at that time! I love it when the sun does start to come up though. I am always trying to take pictures of the sunrise. That particular morning it was amazing! Before it appeared over the horizon, a beam of orange light was shining straight up, like a spotlight being shone into the sky at a movie premiere (or from a pachinko parlour). When I snapped, the way the camera caught the light made it look very different in the picture. But absolutely brilliant!
Well, off I go to get my solid night’s sleep! Gotta get more pounds off again!
I will just leave you with this question:
We are supposed to drink 8 glasses of water each day. Do other liquids count toward that? Let me know what you know or think.
Unbelievable! I went out on my daily quest for 10,000
dollars steps and it was -8C!! Practically a heatwave out there! And sunny too! What a perfect day for a walk, I tell ya! It has been soooo many years since I was actually thought that -8C was “somewhat mild”! I lived for so long in a land where 0C was practically armageddon. It was an awesome feeling, breathing in cool, refreshing air and feeling the sun on my face…inspired me to walk even further than I had planned.
After exploring lots of paths, I made myself come back to reality, face responsibility and head to the supermarket. Or the suupaa. Or the grocery store. Or the depanneur. Whatever floats your boat. And I stocked up on lots of fresh goodness to make my food! This is it! Organization is kicking in somewhat! Going to make meals for the week.
I came back home, ready and rarin’ to hit the floor, get my crunches, squats and pathetic push-ups out of the way. Then I remembered I was going to use the slow cooker and had to get my butt in gear with cooking or I would be stuck eating my creation at 3am (<–perhaps a slight exaggeration)
Here is what I have achieved so far:
I have made a super-duper impressive version of something Mom used to make when we were kids (my brothers and I; not my mom and I…we weren’t actually kids together). She used to bake chicken pieces in the oven after having marinated them in Catalina salad dressing and bbq sauce. Yeah, you read that right. And it was awesome! I decided to get all adventurous and recreate it as a slow cooker dish (remember…multi-tasking, kids! Slow cooker takes care of one thing while you do other stuff). It is all very experimental at the moment and I really don’t have measurements to give you. I just sort of throw in what I think will be enough. If there is not enough of something, I add more of it. If there is too much of something, I add more of something else to distract people from the first something. Pure genius!
The ingredients are:
- Catalina dressing
- Bbq sauce (more Catalina than bbq. Don’t ask me the ratio because I will just tell you that for this recipe, the ratio of Catalina to bbq is, “more”)
- 3 or so cloves of garlic, minced (I am a garlic fiend. I actually used 4 cloves…find your comfort level. Mine, apparently is to be immune to vampires.)
- Grated ginger. As much as you feel like putting in.
- Fresh cilantro, chopped. Again, whatever you want. I guesstimate I put in about 1/4 cup.
- Some onion. How much? I dunno. I cut up some and you know…taadaa.
- Saute the onion and garlic with a bit of extra virgin olive oil in a pan first. Just to soften them up and bring out the flavours. Throw all that stuff in the slow cooker. Then add the chicken and kind of cover it with the sauce so it gets fully marinated as it cooks. Oh yeah! Squeeze the juice from half a lime…or a whole one. (Hell, three if you want…sky’s the limit!) Add that to the sauce too. You can do that before adding the chicken, so that you get everything mixed properly or you can do it like I did: About an hour after into the cooking, think to yourself, “Hey! I have limes in the fridge! I bet some lime juice would be yummy in that…why didn’t I think of that at the beginning?”, then add it, awkwardly trying to stir it around the chicken breasts so the lime flavour is distributed evenly in the sauce. Maybe.
I have no idea yet if this is going to taste any good or if I completely buggered things up. I will let you know, if I survive it. And if it does turn out to be good, I will make it again and actually measure stuff so I can call it a recipe. I might even give it a name too…I can get fancy that way sometimes.
The other thing that I made so far was from an actual, real recipe. Yeah, I have been known to do those. Until I get used to them, then I don’t bother with all the pesky measuring nonsense anymore. Measuring cups and spoons? Pfft…those are for wimps. (Ok, really, I don’t have a dishwasher and will cut corners where I can.)
My friend sent me the link to a blog that perhaps some on here might have heard of…I was probably the last on Earth to know about it: Skinny Taste. It is sooo well done! It just might have more recipes than there are human beings on the planet. Every recipe has the nutritional value breakdown, as well as the WW points from both the former system and the new one! I love it. It was an amazing find. (Am I allowed to share my love of something that is not on WordPress?? I hope so, because I believe in sharing the love!) What was really exciting was that the recipe called for mango and I had one. That never happens, ever. Those suckers are expensive but it just happened that last week, there was a sale on mango, so I actually had one just sitting around in my home!
I am so proud of making it, that I am posting my own pic of how it turned out.
Well, I have more to make but now that I have gotten that far, it is time to tone my tush, flatten those abs (someday, someday!), and try to regain some semblance of strength in my arms (I miss teaching little kids, I had pretty good endurance and strength from running around chasing them and having to pick them up all the time, no gym required). Working hard to hopefully see a couple of more pounds gone when I jump on the scales in a few days!
Yesterday was a good food and nutrition day. I had some really awesome food! I made a delicious veggie, quinoa and egg scramble, inspired by another blogger, Mel, when she did a seven day cleanse. She posted the food she ate that week and it all looked really yummy! Thanks for the inspiration, Mel!!! It was actually my first time ever, to eat quinoa. I love and eat other healthy things, like couscous. But quinoa…I have never eaten it. It freaked me out. I couldn’t look at it…it reminded me of, well, fish eggs. And I don’t like fish eggs, hence my aversion to quinoa, even though I am fully aware that fish eggs, it is not. (<–apparently Yoda is guest blogging today…) But it was pretty good. Obviously, I got over the appearance aversion. Although I doubt I will ever eat it plain, on its own; I need to disguise it a little. Don’t judge me, guys!
I have also jacked up my snack supply. I stocked up on more fruit. Grapes were on sale, so I jumped on that bandwagon and got me some! Great to have sitting around to grab pop in when feeling peckish, or snackish, or something. Bought bananas too. Love those. I keep buying lots in hopes that they will get to the point that I will be forced to make banana bread. From a healthy recipe, of course! But they don’t stick around here long enough. Nom, nom, nom…
Having divulged a dirtly little secret earlier about my love of gorgonzola (oh gawwd, with wine….drrrooool), I will divulge yet another dirty little secret. Incidentally, if a dirty little secret is divulged, does that make it a dirty little public knowledge? Or a dirty little divulgence? (Omg, spellcheck didn’t underline that! “Divulgence” is a real word? Who knew?) Annyyyway, my other little secret is this: I didn’t just buy grapes and bananas for snacks. I also bought…prunes. There, I said it. I was even embarrassed to ask for them when I couldn’t find them…I said I was “sent to get” them, as though they weren’t really for me. I didn’t want people to think I had any problems for which I needed them or that I was elderly. (Because, apparently I think that mentioning prunes fast forwards my face several decades, until I stop mentioning them, returning my face to its rightful age…) But the fact is, I like them. I think they are yummy and they make me happy. Not because they are the drug-free way to regularity, but because they are a comfort food from childhood. My grandparents always had prunes in the house and would give them to my brothers and I as a treat when we were kids. So I have loved eating them since I was a little girl. And to this day, I feel good inside when I eat them (I mean psychologically and emotionally, guys!) I guess if I am going to turn to comfort food, I could do worse than prunes! Phew…there, did it. I am out of the prune closet. I feel so much better now. Thanks for accepting me as I am.
And best of all, our Japanese food arrived! Holy happy dance, guys! Woohoo!! So much goodness, so little space in the freezer and cupboard. We have tofu, konnyaku (yeah, you gotta look that up!), mochi, rice, snacks, tea, curry…and on and on. And of course, we ordered bentos for each of us…good, home-cooked bentos! The delivery didn’t get here until suppertime, so perfect timing!
And that 10,000? Nailed it! And I got in a few sets of crunches, some push-ups, worked on toning legs and even did some planking…the exercise kind, not the internet kind. That would just be weird. 🙂
Now to nail another 10,000 today as well!! (Did I mention that it was -16 again yesterday?) Gotta keep that momentum going!!!
I have a secret. A dirty little secret that I keep trying to ignore but it haunts me just the same. It forced me to face it last night and deal with it. It is this: I love gorgonzola. The way the deserts love the rain. No? What? Deserts miss rain? Oh. Uh…I love gorgonzola the way…um…monkeys love coconuts? The way everyone in the world seems to love bacon right now? I think you get the idea. And a cheese like gorgonzola seems like something I should stay away from at the moment…far, far away. But like a kept woman cannot stay away from her sugar daddy, I caved. I ran to gorgonzola last night; it had been so long and we missed each other so much (ah, there is where that desert thing belongs!). (I am just full of these metaphors today! Or are they similes? Or reasonable facsimilies? I’m confused.)
Dinner was gorgonzola risotto. And it was amazing. And I was pretty proud of myself for making it. I cut calorie corners where possible. Like omitting butter that the recipe called for. I only use extra virgin olive oil in my recipes. And I omitted cream; I did need to add about 1/4c of milk (1%, yo!). I decided to portion it so that I wouldn’t be eating too much (I had about 1/2c, maybe a little less). I paired it with some chicken and spinach cooked with fresh garlic (4 cloves, minced. What can I say? Garlic is another love of mine.) and grated ginger. I also added mirin, sesame oil and a little bit of soy sauce. Heaven in a pan, folks! Almost as good as Sex in a Bowl…but I digress…
In the end, I put the recipe in both WW and MyFitnessPal and although it was scary when I saw the total numbers, once I broke it down into portions, the points and nutritional information was not as bad as I thought! Not numbers that are low enough that I would want to eat it very often, but a little less than I was expecting. Moderation is the spice of life (and I thought it was variety! Or paprika. Boy, was I wrong!).
I am also a lover of spinach. When I have it in the house, I add some to my smoothies in the mornings. Which I did today. Just a handful, blend it in and you can’t even taste it. At all! I do the same with kale if I have that in the house. There. There is my random tip of the day. Perhaps I should start doing that. Just pop a random tip in that is not really related to anything else I am saying. Right in the middle of it all. Just to keep you all on your toes!
Well, today is the day that our Japanese groceries get delivered! I cannot wait. I might even unpack them all then lay down and roll around in them! Ok, maybe not. I don’t want to crush my Bonchi Rice Snacks (and no, that is not some dirty euphemism!). Lots and lots of low-cal, low point, high nutrition goodness coming my way!
Until then, I am off to make a huge dent in my daily 10,000 (steps)!
Woohoo! I did it, guys! I put on 1.5lbs and went back down by 2.5lbs. That is a net loss of one pound. I knew not to stress too much!! (Phew!) Now, just to keep back on track and moving in the same direction. Now I am getting excited about next week’s weigh in. Life is definitely heading in the right direction when you get excited about getting on the scales!
Going through all kinds of slow cooker recipes to cook up some healthy goodness. I figure that would equal multi-tasking when it comes to cooking ahead. I could have something on the go in the slow cooker and then have the stove free to make something else. At the same time! (Yeah, I am an overachiever sometimes.) Then I would have lots to pack up in my new, fun containers, or mini food storage facilities, as I like to call them! And a whole week of lazy freedom of not cooking at all.
Except for the fact that we just ordered a whole bunch of food from a Japanese grocery store near Toronto. I am getting pretty excited about that delivery; I love Japanese food! Can’t wait to get my “ryori tsukurimashou” on! That’s Japanese for “let’s cook this [bleep] up!” I love that stuff and no, not one bit of what we ordered is sushi. There is way more to eat than sushi, guys! And I can’t wait to get my hands on it! This is going to be a good week, indeed!
While Tuesdays are supposed to be my weigh-in days, I couldn’t resist the temptation to jump on a day early…ok, who am I kidding…I have been jumping on my new scales constantly. Bad idea, I know because as fascinating as it is to see how much one’s weight can fluctuate day to day and even within one day, it can also be a little depressing. Depressing when I see the scales go up, thrilling when the numbers go back down. But mostly depressing because being able to obsessively check my weight that often reminds me that I really need a life!!!! Seriously, it sometimes is just something to do! I did the same sort of thing a few years ago when I was in hospital for a week when I lived in Japan. Next to the bedside, in a little holder on the wall, was a thermometer. I took my temperature about every 10 minutes just because I had nothing else to do! But I digress…
So, I was sad to see that as of today, I was up 1.5lbs. On one hand, I am disappointed, on the other hand, I am reminding myself not to stress, I am sure to lose that and maybe a little more by next week. I am actually feeling more determined than discouraged! Determined. Not stubborn. Not at all. And no need to ask my husband and family about their opinions on that.
I am happy to report that I am no longer pedometerless any more!! (<–I don’t always use odd words, but when I do, I use words that aren’t real.) I hit Walmart and plucked that $9 pedometer from the little pedometer section like I knew what I was doing.
I also got one step further in getting organized for the week. Yeah, I portioned and packed up crunchy snacks. Like a boss. I measured and ziplocked like nobody’s business! I had purchased some corn chips with flax seed (because flax seeds make them super healthy, of course.) and some sunflower seeds. Now, I know sunflower seeds are supposed to be evil because of their high fat content, despite the fact that it is mostly good fat. But I measured out 1/4c portions as opposed to the 1/3c as outlined in the nutritional information (and once I saw it in the wee snack sized baggy, that 1/4c is a little more than I usually eat anyway).
As for prepping actual meals for the week, well, I bought groceries. That is a start, right? I am still on the spontaneous side of the fence when it comes to meals. But I swear, one of these days, I will take some stuff out of the fridge and maybe cut some of it up. If I feel like it. And if I can find the knife. And the cutting board. And if I feel like it (did I already say that?). When it is cut up, then there is no turning back…something will have to be made.
And in case of the event of actually making something after said cleaving of food, I did buy containers that were the perfect portion size, so that is something! I have decided to make a few large batches of food on Sundays, then freezing/refrigerating them in single sized portions. Easy for days when we don’t feel like cooking up something good!
We also don’t have a car. Which means, to make a long story short, we spent almost three hours on our feet today, walking around. That earned me a fair few WW points! Part of that errand-running was to get my new pedometer, so I have no idea how many steps I took today but I am guessing the tally would be anywhere between 10,000 and a lot!
I am now also competing with a friend. She is getting back in shape and has set herself a goal for May 1st. I decided it would be great motivation to compete with each other and see who can successfully reach a decided-upon goal for that date. She is eating right and has started at the gym. She also has been using “My Fitness Pal”, which she encouraged me to use as well. I checked it out and love the food database…so much food info in there, and it tracks calories! I love my WW program but the database for food leaves a bit to be desired, I think (anyone else on WW feel the same way? Or not??). I think these two programs could work very well for me.
Well, it is another week, and another shot at getting even further along in my journey! Loving life this week!!
Oooh boy. I think I need some help. I decided I am going to be Miss Most Organized Woman In The Universe and plan out my meals for next week. I even opened up an Excel spreadsheet do this. Then I remembered. I was never very good at colouring inside the lines. Not at all, guys. This looks like it might be too much for my scatter-brained, “think-outside-the-box-what-box-there-was-a-box-…-where” head to handle.
I got as far as breakfast (no problem, exact same thing every morning!) and about four lunches. Then I was stuck. Stuck like a little car with all-season radials on a deeply snow covered road in a Canadian blizzard. I have been looking at recipes and getting great inspiration. But not really sure where to put everything in the order of events. So many things I want to make and I feel like I should be looking at making something new each day…at least for suppers. But then, hey guys, leftovers! What then? Or do you plan for leftovers as part of your weekly organizational plan?
My hubby and I are more the stick-our-heads-in-the-fridge-and-cupboards kind, saying “hmmm” several times over before coming up with a great, spontaneous (and usually healthy) idea for what to have. 75% of the time, when I do plan ahead on what to make, when the time comes, I change my mind and make something else. *Note: 63.8% of my statistics are 100% made-up.
Is there anyone else out there like this (breaking out in hives at the idea of “being organized”) who managed to get it together and decide that far in advance what you are going to have and stick to it? How did you get to that point? Do you have any pointers for me? Or are there those who don’t plan, who just sit back, enjoy the ride and bask in the fun of surprising yourself with when mealtime comes ’round? Do you find that works just as well for you as folks who plan ahead find that works for them?
Any tips and tricks are more than welcome! Whether it be tips and tricks in the form of advice, or tips and tricks in the form of actual money and entertainment…I’m pretty easygoing that way.