Monday, January 28, 2013


Why was last week's business travel the Best.Trip.Ever?  Because I LOST WEIGHT! What?  I've been lucky to maintain, but I lost a solid few pounds of fat while I was traveling last week.  Super duper awesomeness.

Let me share how.  This is gonna be a big food post with lots of pics so brace yourself!

WATER: I knew I would be eating out alot.  So I made sure my water intake was solid.  I drink about 4/32 oz water bottles/day. 

SNACKS:  I didn't pack snacks for my 5 hour drive (duh - what was I thinking???).  Fortunately I found a gas station with these great options!

I split the almonds between two snacks and the apple I shared as it was HUGE.  Enjoyed the apple with some peanut butter and the banana right away after I bought it as I was starving.  I did not make it in time for a sit down lunch that day, but I stopped by my favorite grocery store (Publix!) and got a Cobb Salad (removed about half the cheese and the icky green onions - lol).  I also snacked on baby carrots (plain), snap peas (this was funny as I walked around the office eating them) etc.

COOKING:  I stayed with a friend at her apartment; SO much better than eating out EVERY meal.  I was able to control what I ate by having plenty of veggies and protein available for snacks along with making sure I could have full control over certain meals.  Here are a few pictures of my home-made concoctions last week:

This is 2 scrambled eggs with diced baby tomatoes.  I sautee the tomatoes for a few minutes to get them kinda cooked before adding the eggs.  I do eggs almost every  morning with different veggies.  Spinach, zucchini, mushrooms, and even onions.

This was my amazing homemade chili...
1 lb ground turkey
2 cans reduced sodium kidney beans
2 cans reduced sodium black beans
1 small can plain tomato sauce
2 cans low sodium diced tomatoes (this time I used the ones flavored with green peppers, onion and celery)
1 bag frozen green bell pepper
one diced onion
2 chopped zucchini
Homemade chili seasoning (I make my own chili seasoning as the packets are full of additives and salt. This way I can control what I ingest.)

Chili seasoning recipe: (appropriate for the amount of chili above) 
1 Tbsp Chili Powder
1/2 Tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 Tsp Onion Powder
1/4 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 Tsp Oregano
1/2 Tsp Paprika
1 Tsp Sea Salt
1 Tsp Pepper
1 and 1/2 Tsp Ground Cumin

Brown the meat and onion and green pepper.  Add seasoning.  Dump in tomatoes and tomato sauce.  Drain beans and rinse them, then add in.  Turn up the heat on the stove and toss in the Zucchini, let it simmer together.  The zucchini gives the chili a little bit of sweetness we found, and it was delicious!  You can also do this in the crock pot on low all day. 

Did you know you could also add an entire bag of spinach chopped up?  Your kids will never know.  Mine don't even notice it anymore and we're getting so many nutrients.  You can also soak and cook your own beans but I rarely have time to do that especially when traveling so the fact that I even cooked was a feat in itself. I have no issues with canned beans as long as you stick to low sodium and rinse them well.

We topped our chili with nonfat greek yogurt and diced avocado.  It was amazing!  If I do say so myself.

GOOD LUNCH CHOICES:  Even when those I dined with made whatever choices they wanted, and some things that smelled and looked amazing, I was really satisfied and happy with my lunch choices this week.  Here they are:

This is lunch at Great Wall, my FAVORITE Chinese place in Dothan.  They have a "diet" menu (you know I hate that word) and I ordered the Steamed Chicken and Vegetables.  I used to get sweet and sour sauce on the side, but it is SO laden with sugar I opted to skip it.  Instead, I took a spicy mustard packet and mixed that in and it was DELICIOUS!  Just the right amount of spice and flavor and the veggies were perfectly cooked.  You have to check this place out if you're in the Dothan area - be sure to tell Mrs. Nancy that I sent you.

This is one of several Longhorn lunches.  Longhorn has some really healthy options and you know what?  Like other restaurants, the  healthy options are sometimes NOT on the menu.  Pictured above is the "dieter's chicken" which is really funny as it comes with ANY 2 sides you want (lol).  Grilled chicken breast and I opted for green beans and asparagus.  Amazing and delicious!

This is another Longhorn lunch - I ordered "The Rancher" which is a 6 oz sirloin topped with a slice of bacon and an egg sunny side up.  It also comes with some sauce but I just ordered it dry.  Along with a good side of steamed broccoli with no butter or oil on it.  This was AMAZING and SO packed with protein!!!

DINNERS:  So when I didn't cook (I only cooked dinner one night) I ate out.  Here are the dinners I opted for while out and about:

Night 1 - I went to Panera as my friend wasn't feeling good and got her some soup from Panera. None of the soup options seemed safe - here was my conversation with the young man in the drive through:

"Can you tell me what soups you have tonight? Me.
"Sure! We have the chicken noodle, the garden vegetable pesto, and creamy tomato." Him
"Ok, I am looking for one without carbs.  Does the garden vegetable pesto have pasta in it?" Me
"Yes, but it only has 80 calories per serving so its a good choice." Him
"That's great, but I am not as worried about the calories as I am the carbs.  Does your chicken soup have noodles in it too?" Me
"Yes it does, but it is also low fat with only 70 calories per serving."  Him
"Thanks, I'll just get my friend the grilled cheese and the chicken noodle soup."  Me, while shaking my head and realizing they just don't teach nutrition at ALL like they should in school. I called Longhorn and waited for them to cook me the 6oz sirloin above, broccoli and asparagus.  It was amazing.  And that is ginger pear dressing on my plate in case I needed it for my veggies - didn't really, it was awesome!

OK, probably my FAVE dinner all week.  6 oz Filet with 3 grilled shrimp (I shared) and beautiful steamed veggies along with tomatoes and fresh basil.  I asked for the veggies to have no butter and the chef added a lemon in so I could squeeze it over the veggies.  VERY insightful of him and it was really one of the loveliest meals I've had. And so pretty and colorful.  WINNING!

So there you have week in pictures. 

My scale said I was back down to 212.8.  I'm not totally sure how well that will "stick" as it was the low point of my cycle weight wise, but I"m feeling good, so we'll see.

I weigh in and measure in for the month on Wednesday before starting a newer, more challenging eating plan for 30 days called the Whole 30 for the last month of the 90 day challenge I started in December.

Basically it is how I eat now, but a bit more strict removing dairy and beans which I eat now and NO CHEATS for 30 days!!!  THAT will be tough.  Bye bye dark chocolate...Oh and I have to put the scale away for the entire month! SO scary!  You can learn more about the Whole 30 plan (its free!) HERE.  I'm excited about it!  It can also cure many ailments, stomach issues, acne, etc., as you can add some foods back in afterward to see what affects your body/skin negatively. 

I'll tell you more about the Whole 30 later this week.  In the meantime, I'm heading to the kitchen for some dark chocolate before I have to break up with it for the month of February!

Keep on keeping on folks.  I'm learning more and more that it is ALL about nutrition.  You can work out all you want, but if you eat like crap, you'll feel like crap and never get the results you really want.  I'm still working out, sometimes twice a day doing Turbo Fire and running (my running group is up to week 4 on Couch to 5k!).  Yesterday I went out alone and ran 5k by myself and it felt great.  I'm really enjoying the Turbo Fire too.  Yep, all that activity is important.  And I was doing this a year ago, lots of running, boot camp and Zumba.  But my nutrition was not dialed in like it is now.  And for that, I am getting and expecting, RESULTS. 

Love those.  At this rate I could be at goal by summer (GASP!). 

Peace out friends!

***By the way, I also found there is an ingredient in the Shakeology that doesn't agree with me and may have made me so sick last month though I still think it was my gall bladder being set off by something, maybe that.  It works wonderfully for alot of people, but there is something in it that just doesn't sit well with me so that's out of my regimen.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Not So Great Super Great Week

So this week has been great.  Funny thing is, not everything in my LIFE was great.  Work was a bit stressful, our house still hasn't sold in Florida, and I am preparing to leave town Monday for a few days.  All of those things would normally have me ughed out by now.

BUT.  I really think a healthy approach to my eating and my crazy-mad exercise activity this week have made a huge difference in my mood and my overall attitude, including my response to some things that might otherwise be big let-me-eat-anything-I-can-get-my-hands-on-right-now moments.

As I mentioned earlier in the week, I started training a group of ladies to run a 5k.  We're using the Couch to 5k program and starting week 3 now. It's been SO awesome to be part of their beginning running journey and its fun to have people to meet to work out with!

Let's recap the activity this week:

Sunday: Core 20 min workout, ran intervals with one of our training group members (she wanted an extra run!)
Monday: Fire 45 min workout, ran intervals with training group, week 2 of C25k.
Tuesday: HIIT 20 min class, ran intervals with training group, week 2 of C25k.
Wednesday: HIIT 15 min workout, Sculpt 30 min workout.
Thursday: ran intervals with training group, week 2 of C25k.
Friday: Fire 55 min workout, lunchtime 2 miles with a friend (her first time hitting that distance!), evening run with training group, week 3 of C25k.
Saturday: Core 20 min workout, 40 min stretch (like pilates/yoga), 2 mile walk with the family.

Yeah, I'm pretty tired looking at that list too.  Some days I had 2 workouts, and one day had 3.  I don't plan to always do that as I could overdo it, but given running is something I am good at, I don't always count it as an extra workout.

My body is responding extremely well to the workouts, as well as the eating mostly protein, produce, healthy fats and of course, lots of water. 

I'm going to be packing my handy Turbo Fire workout DVDs, the schedule, and a friend gave me a few of her awesome Boot Camp lists to do as well while I'm traveling.  I'm excited to stay on track with food and kind of see it as a challenge.  I am planning to do everything in my power to LOSE WEIGHT this week. 

Think I can do it?

Hey, are you a regular reader?  I go for weeks with ZERO comments...if you read, appreciate, get what I'm saying or think I'm a moron, would you please leave a comment below?  Yes, they have to be approved before they are if you call me a moron I likely won't approve it.  But would love to know if I'm talking to dead air or not...

thanks friends!

HUGS! Here's to a healthy week ahead!


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Burpee Kinda Month

So its been a "Burpee Kinda Month."  If you've ever done a burpee (some people call them up/downs), you will understand what I mean.  You are standing up, then you drop down into pushup position then jump back up. Its TOUGH on your quads and really gets your heart pumping.  Especially when you weigh over 200 pounds.  Just saying.

I was doing GREAT at the time of my last posting.  I went on a business trip and did awesome, staying on plan and working out a ton.  Then I returned home and something strange happened. I was hit with some kind of crazy, weird, GI issue that stopped me in my proverbial tracks.

It was horrid.  Each afternoon I began to get nauseated and light headed. I would eat something, then feel completely bloated, stomach burning, nauseated, to the point of laying down. It was rough. My parents came to visit after Christmas and it had been going on for a week so she made me go to the doctor.  Everyone was puzzled but it sounded like my gall bladder. Had an ultrasound and supposedly that is working fine...(though they didn't do a function test; I still suspect that might be an issue).

Guess what? I felt better when I ate crappy food.  It was the only kind of food that would keep me from having to lie down.  Fruit, veggies, etc., made me feel horrible.  It was very puzzling.  They put me on a medication that helps reduce acid in your stomach, and I was on that for about a week, then decided to take myself off of it.  I slowly began reducing carbs again and next thing you know, I'm back on track.

It was crazy as I really didn't "want" to eat badly for those two weeks, but it was either that or feel like crap.  Now I'm rounding the bend of that issue and beginning to have the opposite, feeling bad if I eat something bad.  YAY!

All that crap (lol) out of the way (for now), I've started something fun on the exercise track.

Still doing my awesome Turbo Fire workouts and I love love love them.  I've also started running regularly again; and last week started a group of ladies on the Couch to 5k (C25K) program.  We're most of the way through Week 2, and they are very faithful and dedicated. It is SO awesome to have them training with me!  I'm really enjoying it AND the accountability of having people to workout with is awesome.

Most days I have a Turbo Fire workout AND a run.  It seems like alot, but it feels amazing.  I'm really really enjoying it and seeing results very quickly.

The eating is mainly Protein, Produce and water.  I eat protein at every meal/snack and veggies at every meal/snack with fruit here and there too. It's going extremely well for me.

What I notice most is my BELLY FAT is what is disappearing the fastest. This is normal for reducing complex carbs.  I am eating carbs, people, but not in the form of bread or pasta or rice.  Instead, in the form of veggies and fruits, and millet and flax.

I feel really good and don't find myself craving anything which is really helpful. I do eat dark chocolate every day still too which is really helping me stay on track and not crave anything crazy.

Hey wait, I didn't talk about New Year's resolutions! Because I don't believe in them.  Read my thoughts on that HERE when I posted about Decisions vs. Resolutions.  Good stuff.  I keep hearing "I plan to eat less this or more that or do this or stop that."  Well...lets talk in February when your very airy lofty goals have failed. You have to make them SMART!  Read more about that HERE.

Overall, I'm in a really good place. I did gain some weight back when I went through the crazy-eat-bad-food-to-feel-better-gi issue, but I'm back to losing again and almost to where I was before it happened.

So the moral of the story is I HATE Burpees but sometimes life is like one.  You are up, you are down, its rough, you want to quit, but you have to hang in there and keep going.  And I have and I am.

Holla! :)