Saturday, November 29, 2008
A great addition to any meal is the Chicken Tortilla Soup. Without the tortillas, it is only 1-2 points per bowl, and is great. It is a little on the spicy side, but delicious.
For a 4-5 point lunch I get the soup and a taco. They have great fish, chicken, or veggie tacos and the point range is between 3 and 4 points each.
For dinner, a great option is the bonzai burrito. It is a delicious burrito filled with teriyaki grilled veggies, and beans, rice and your choice of meat. It is a huge burrito, and the fish is only 12 points, the chicken 14. Another option is to get the soup and split the burrito in half and you have a very filling meal.
Last, the kids bowls are another lunch option. For the fish bowl, that comes with rice and black beans it is 7.5 points. Chicken is 8. Much better than the adult sized bowls, which range from 18 to 21 points.
For those of you who live in other states, I am so sorry. Wahoo's is one of my favorite places!
Why is it so easy to slip back into bad habits? You'd think that after over 3 months of successfully changing my eating habits for the better, it would stick a little. Is it really possible to change and actually prefer the healthier choices? Or is it always going to be hard? I can't really answer that question right now. Any thoughts?
So on a positive note, today I am back on track. I have come to terms with my little "bump in the road." Not beating myself up, instead I am moving forward. Got up, worked out, and made myself a healthy breakfast. Did fine at lunch, and am determined to make it through the day making good choices.
Also, yesterday I bought myself my early Christmas/B-day present- a Wii Fit. I am so excited to get going. I have heard such great things about it, and it will be a fun way to get a few additional work-outs each week.
Hope you all had a great holiday.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Today, I woke up and worked out immediately, before I could get distracted. Then we met up with a couple of friends at Disneyland, and walked around the park a ton. That had to be good. It was my night to cook in our dinner club, so I had to make something easy, and this recipe is perfect when you need to whip something yummy up fast.
8 Servings/6 Pts. ea.
1 cup chopped onion
16 oz. shredded cooked chicken breast
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese
1 cup salsa
3 oz. 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
8 flour tortillas (Find ones that are 2 pts. each for this recipe)
1 1/2 cups enchilada sauce
Preheat oven to 350*F. Spray a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat until hot. Add onion, and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the shredded chicken, cheese, salsa, cream cheese, and cumin. Cook 3 minutes or until hot, stirring constantly. Separate 1/2 C of the shredded cheese and put aside. Dip each tortilla in enchilada sauce, coating. Shake off excess. Place about 1/2 cup of the chicken mixture down the center of each tortilla, and roll up. Place in a 9 x 13 inch baking dish which has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Pour any remaining enchilada sauce evenly over top, and sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese. Cover and bake at 350*F for 30 minutes or until sauce is bubbly and cheese is melted.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Uh-oh....it's one of those mornings. I'm tired because I didn't sleep enough, I have an extra kid at home since school's out, I put on a pound over the weekend, and I really need to work out. Chances are my normal kickboxing class at the gym is out of the question because the babysitting room will be extra full, so there's going to be no one barking at me and telling me what to do.
So now what?
I do best with group exercise classes when it comes to cardio because I get less bored and being around other people forces me to step up my exercise game. But if it's not possible to make one of the classes, then I've learned to have a variety of other options lined up so that I get my cardio done anyway. I have several different exercise DVDs from tae bo to cardio dance on hand and can always check more out from the library for a dollar. I know which cable channels have exercise programs in the morning that I can follow along. These are good options for me, but the best one, the one I have the most chance of sticking out...is walking.
But that's because I have a secret weapon: my iPod.
You've all figured this out already, right? But if yours is full of high energy music chosen to keep you moving, then....we use our iPods differently. I've found something else that works even better to keep me going longer: podcasts. There are dozens, probably hundreds, of these little gems available for free from iTunes on every subject you can imagine. I just load my iPod up with ones that sound interesting, load the baby into the stroller, and hit the pavement with my heart monitor ticking off the calories I've burned. Learning about something new or getting caught up in a story while I'm doing my super cool power walk makes it easier to go just a little farther because then it's not about burning just a few more calories; it's about finding out what happens next in the podcast. And I burn a few more calories anyway.
Perfect for a slacker like me that can't always get out the door just because I should. It's that little extra bonus that makes lacing up my sneakers slightly more likely and every small victory counts. Especially this week!
Sunday, November 23, 2008
So I haven't weighed myself, I will wait till my next weigh in, on Saturday. Great. Right after Thanksgiving. Gotta be really good this week because I am definitely eating Thanksgiving dinner.
It wasn't that hard to get back on track today, though. (Got home last night) In prior "dieting" times, I have always (after falling off the wagon) said, "I will start again on Monday." Since this time I am not dieting, (I am changing my lifestyle), it was a no-brainer to eat healthy right away. It feels so good to have eaten right today. I really like the way I feel much better.
So many of my favorite bloggers have talked about the "not waiting till Monday" to start eating right, after a screw up. We have to change our ways if we want this to work. We aren't going to be perfect in our eating. We will always have times where we have more calories than is ideal. What we have to do is be ok with that, and not think that since we blew it, we might as well keep blowing it. If we quit, we will never make it on this journey. Procrastination will just set us back even more. Just more weight to lose.
In fact, just read a post on this very topic, concerning Thanksgiving. It was a great one.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
For lunch, I had a bowl of chicken noodle soup and a roll, which couldn't have been that bad.
Snack, well, I went to Harrods and came across their food section. They had a whole department just for chocolates. I had to sample a few. They were amazing. And tiny. I had about 4.
We ate dinner at an Italian place, and I had a chicken, mushroom and tomato pasta with marinara sauce. I tried to eat just a small portion of it, less than half. Hopefully it did the trick and I manage to maintain....
Why is it so hard to have will-power on vacation?
Monday, November 17, 2008
Weighed in on Saturday and lost 2.6 lbs! Finally got past my "happy weight" of 135-136 lbs. This was really exciting. Total lbs. lost is up to 11.2 lbs.
That was the good news. The bad news is that I left that evening to go on a trip to the UK. My goal was to not gain this week, and I am NOT off to a good start. I can only hope that all the walking I am doing will help me. I have to eat better starting tomorrow.
This is how my day went:
Breakfast started out ok. Had some light strawberry yogurt, one tiny pan au chocolate pastry, and a cup of mixed fruit.
At lunch, I had good intentions. I ordered the potato and leek soup at a cafe, and a hot chocolate because I was so freezing. (It was bone-chilling cold outside and I am NOT used to it) The soup tasted like water. I couldn't even eat more than 2 bites. So I had to order something else, and there wasn' t a lot of options. The only thing that looked like it would taste good was a ham and cheese croissant sandwich. So I ate it, and it was really big.
Oh, boy. Dinner. Had lost my good intentions. Slipped into Old Habits. Went to a Portugese Chicken place called Nando's. Had 1/2 chicken meal with 2 pieces of pita bread, and part of a salad. Not horrible, but then I decided to order desert. They make the best molten chocolate cake here. They call it Chocolate Fondant Pudding. It is luscious, and they serve it with super rich and yummy vanilla ice cream. I ate it and didn't even feel the guilt.
What am I doing? No more. Tomorrow I have to be in control. How sad would I be if I gain back the weight I just lost?
Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.
Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.
I have to fall asleep chanting this...
Friday, November 14, 2008
4 (HUGE) Servings/5 pts ea.
4 T Onion Soup Mix
2 sm. onions, chopped
2 10 oz. packages sliced mushrooms
1 lb. sirloin steak, trimmed and chopped
1 1/2 C fat-free sour cream
2 t. cornstarch
Spray medium/large skillet with nonstick spray. Brown steak and remove from pan. Spray pan again with nonstick spray. Saute onions and mushrooms until soft.
Add meat to vegetables, and stir in the onion soup mix. Heat till bubbly, then add sour cream a little at a time, until meat is done.
If sauce is too thin, add corn starch and stir till it reaches your desired consistancy.
Serve over whole wheat/high fiber pasta. (Will need to add points)
Thursday, November 13, 2008
After browsing for some books for my daughter, I went to check them out at the front desk. The librarian scanned my card, and mentioned that there were a few books due in a couple of days. I asked which ones, and he gave me the names of a couple of books I just turned in. He asked me where I put them, and I said, "On the cart." He started to get really frustrated, and said that I should have given them to him to check in, not put them on the cart. He got up, and said that now he had to look all over the library to see if he could find them, and glared at me like this was my fault. So I waited while he checked all the shelves for them.
He finally comes back (without finding any of the books) and lectures me again and again about how things should be done. He tells me we have to put a hold on the book, and said that tons of people "claim" to return books but aren't telling the truth. So after about 10 minutes of lecturing me, he then asked me if I put a parking pass on the car. I said no. He asked me if I ever read signs on the road. Then, he lectured me again for 5 minutes on reading traffic signs.
At this point I was ready to scream. Finally the checkout nightmare was over, and as I was leaving he said something else about the situation. I turned to him, and said "Then you need to remove that sign that says 'RETURN BOOKS HERE' because that is what I did. I just followed the instructions. You are making me feel like this is all my fault. Have a great afternoon." And then I left. On the way home, I started crying because he was so mean. (Am having an emotional day)
(Wondering what the point of this story is? It's coming...)
So after I got home and put my daughter down for a nap, I immediately walked to the pantry and found the first chocolate item I could find. Thank goodness I don't keep very much in the house. So I ate some Granola Bites, which are only 2 pts.
I was done with the Bites and about to go get more, when it hit me what I was doing. I felt sad, and immediately tried to "fix it" with chocolate. So upon realizing this, I decided to stop the impending binge.
Now, after venting this long story, I feel much better, and don't need a chocolate fix any more.
While trying to think of good side dishes and vegetables, I came across an awesome blog called A Veggie Venture. On it she lists vegetable dishes by Points, and alphabetically. I was browsing through her recipes and found this amazing one called Feta Stuffed Zucchini. It looked amazing, so I made it this week. It was super yummy!
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
So it's almost Thursday and this is a little belated, but I wanted to share my Wednesday Workout Tip with you guys, something I'll try to do every week.
Know first that I hate working out. At least, I do while I'm thinking about exercising and then while I'm exercising. But I like how I feel after, whether it's because of the endorphins or my gradually shrinking waistline, I'm not sure. Since I want to keep my downward scale trend (21 pounds and counting), I have become the master at finding little tricks to get myself up and at 'em with cardio everyday. So here's the first one:
A heart rate monitor.
Yep, it's that simple. No matter what kind of cardio I choose (and maybe I'll blog about that next Wednesday) a heart rate monitor that I bought last spring from Target has pushed me to get just a little more out of each workout. It's a pretty straightforward device. A digital wristwatch picks up and displays my heart rate and calories burned so far from a slim strap that goes around my chest. The plainer ones will just do the heart rate, which my husband finds sufficient. For me, though, having that little number of calories I'm burning grow bigger and bigger is exactly the kind of instant gratification I need to keep me going with my exercise. If I'm pooping out but notice that I've burned 320 calories, I find myself thinking, "I'll just go until 350" and then I find it's easy just to push to 400 after that. If I'm getting bored with my cardio (because the elliptical trainer at the gym? Snooze fest), I just go faster and harder to get the calories burned faster which is a nice challenge to my usual rhythm.
The monitors range from $50-100 depending on the features you want, but mine (a Polaris) has been worth every penny because I know I've burned thousands of extra calories over the last few months that I wouldn't have without my little wristwatch telling me how close I was to a new goal and level of success.
I also blog about random and what I think are hilarious life slices at my other blog, Write Stuff.
When they were done, my daughter (she's 2 1/2) scarfed one down. She loved it. (Because she, like me, is already a chocoholic) Then, after seeing me take a picture of one, she decided to go get her camera and play foodie photographer.
12 Servings/ 2 Pts. ea.
2 cups moist-style chocolate cake mix (half of an 18.25-oz. box)
Two 25-calorie packets diet hot cocoa mix
1/2 cup fat-free liquid egg substitute (like Egg Beaters Original)
2 tbsp. semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
1 tsp. Splenda No Calorie Sweetener (granulated)
1/8 tsp. salt
Place chocolate chips and the contents of both packets of cocoa in a tall glass. Add 12 oz of boiling water. Stir until chips and cocoa mix have dissolved. Put glass in the freezer to chill for 25 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350. Once cocoa has chilled, stir it, and mix with all other ingredients in a mixing bowl. Whip batter with a whisk/fork for 2 minutes. Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray, or line it with baking cups.
Evenly spoon batter (which will be thin, but your cupcakes will rise) into the pan. Bake for 15-17 minutes. Cupcakes will look shiny when done.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Roni, one of my inspirations, said in one of her blog posts, that if you quit, you will definitely fail. This really helped me today. I had gotten home from church, eaten lunch, and put my toddler down for a nap. All I could think about was chocolate chip cookies. I could not get them out of my head. I wasn't too worried, though, because I knew I wasn't going to go to all the effort of baking them. So I ate a Healthy Choice Fudgesickle instead. I watched a couple of recorded shows with my husband (The Office and Grey's Anatomy) and the chocolate chip cookie bug hit me again. I still wasn't that worried until I walked into my kitchen and saw that my husband had taken me seriously and there was a package of Pillsbury Cookie Dough sitting on the counter, thawing out. It had been hidden by him in the freezer.
Now what to do? I wanted those cookies more than anything. Here was my conversation to myself:
"It would just be one day, you could be good again tomorrow."
"You are going to England next week, and you aren't going to be perfect, so why not get back on track after the trip?"
"You could eat these now and have a 2 Pt. dinner" (This one almost won out)
But then I thought about Roni's statement. How many times have I gotten to this weight, felt a little better about myself, and then quit? Then the rollercoaster begins again. Making this a lifestyle is what needs to happen. I can't live a lifestyle where it is ok to binge all the time. Because believe me, I can never just eat one or two cookies. It has to be at least 5 or 6.
In the end, I ate one little round of cookie dough, and convinced my husband to pack it up and put it back in the freezer. Then I went and took a nap, and when I woke up, no cookie cravings!
A small one, but a victory nonetheless.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
This weekend we decided to drive up to my husband's parents house in Lake Arrowhead. My mother-in-law always makes super yummy weekend breakfasts, like pancakes and eggs and either sausage or bacon. It is always very tempting to give in, and most of the time in the past I have. So I was talking to my mother-in-law, and she mentioned that she bought some Fiber One pancake mix. I didn't know there was such a thing. We looked on the box to check out the nutritional info and one serving is only 3 points. The only thing that remained to be seen was how big the serving was. It sounded too good to be true. So this morning, I prepared a single serving for myself (which was nice and easy to do) and added one point worth of extra semi-sweet chocolate chips into the batter. It made 3 good size pancakes! (About 5 inches in diameter) I ate those (dipped in a little sugar-free syrup) with some scrambled egg whites and it was a super filling, indulgent feeling breakfast! I didn't feel deprived at all. I know there are lots of recipes out there for low point pancakes, but sometimes you just want quick and easy. I was going to take a picture, but of course forgot to bring my camera with me.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Salad Ingredients (Makes 4 very large dinner-size servings)
Whole Salad is 30 pts.
Each Serving is 7 1/2 pts.
1 head green cabbage, shredded
10 oz cooked chicken breast - chopped into 1/2" pieces
2 green onions, chopped
1 1/2 C shelled edamame
4 T sliced almonds
2 sm. cans mandarin oranges, drained
Seasoning Packet from Ichibon Japanese Noodles (Japanese Top Ramen in Asian aisle)
1/2 C splenda
2 T + 2 t. canola oil
2 T pectin mixed into 1/2 C water
6 T seasoned rice vinegar
1/4 t. pepper
1 t. sesame oil
Shake or mix dressing ingredients together. Dressing is enough to toss 6 main dish salads. For this recipe size (4 main dish salads) use 6-7 oz. of dressing. (Whole recipe makes about 10 oz. dressing) Toss with all salad ingredients until oranges start to break up.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
that discusses that if eating is a hobby of yours, you probably are overweight and if you don't make some changes, you probably will stay that weight. It makes some excellent points:
1. The reason many people are overweight and always are going to be overweight is because they have made eating a too big part of their lives.
2. Eating will not bring you long term happiness in life.
3. Get some hobbies, live happier, (make it so your life does not revolve around food!) and lose weight as a result!
I know that I have been a culprit. As I am striving to change my life, I notice that as I take up new hobbies and stay busy, I am less inclined to think about food.
So I went into the dressing room, and one after the other, the tops looked horrible. Many needed a larger size than I was expecting, and of course they didn't have that size. Some just looked bad. One was cute but wasn't made well, and fit funny. Mostly, I just noticed my flaws in the mirror. It was pretty depressing. I was expecting my body to look much better than it did.
So, now that it has been a few hours, I have had time to reflect. What positive thing can I take from the experience? It has re-motivated me to keep up my hard work. One day I will look the way I want to. I can't give up until I reach my goal. I know there will be obstacles, but I will not let a few bumps discourage me on my journey.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
8 Servings/2 Cups Each/4 Pts. Ea. Serving
1 pd lean ground meat (for my points, I used 96% lean ground beef)
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 C celery, cut into chunks
2 zucchini or summer squash, shredded
1/2 bell pepper, chopped
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1 sm. can green chilis
2 15 oz cans stewed tomatoes
2 cans black beans (can substitute another type of bean if you want)
1 Taco Seasoning packet
1 Ranch-style dressing mix packet (Hidden Valley)
2 t. cumin
16 oz. frozen corn
2 t. chili powder
In a large soup pot, brown the meat, then add onions, garlic, zucchini, peppers, and celery halfway through the browning.
One by one add the remaining ingredients. Do not drain anything, just dump.
Heat through, and simmer for a while till the flavors blend (about 1/2 hour).
This makes a lot. Leftovers can be frozen if you like.
Monday, November 3, 2008
Saturday, November 1, 2008
BUT today I have been really good. Went to my niece's birthday party and skipped the cake! It feels good to be back on track. I just worked out on my elliptical for 40 minutes, and I really wanted to take a nap instead. But I am so glad I did.
Hope everyone else got through Halloween better than me.