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Vegetarian for a week

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Last week, after I made SP_STEPF's Quinoa Black Bean Casserole,
I came up with a new challenge for myself: to eat only vegetarian meals for an entire week.

I am a meat eater — always have been. In fact, my mom told me that when I was little I enjoyed the meat dishes the most. As such, if I don't have meat as part of my meal, l it feels like something is "missing." Lately though, I've been making a conscious effort to incorporate more vegetarian meals into my diet. I find that vegetarian meals are healthy, less expensive and although they are satisfying, I don't feel as FULL afterward. So...I thought, why not see if I can be a vegetarian for an entire week?!?!

I could use a new challenge. I have been in a rut, and having a goal to work toward is just what I need to rev things up.

So...I'm going for it! Maybe not this week because I have some planning to do (and some meat in my fridge to eat up). In fact, I have a pot roast in the slow cooker today. LOL. The main obstacle, of course, is that when I tell myself I "can't" have something, I immediately want it. I will have to compile some delicious-looking veg recipes to get excited about. :) If you have one, feel free to share! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    How is it going?

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DNJEN471 6/3/2010 5:28PM

    Welcome to my world! I hope you enjoy it. I have been vegetarian for 2 years now!

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ZIRCADIA 6/2/2010 3:59PM

    VERY COOL! I believe I could do this fairly easily, but I'm not sure I would be able to bring my DH along. HAHAHA :D He is extremely carnivorous. Thanks for the comment on my blog -- I definitely feel a change with the house getting in order. :)

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SPARKNMOM 6/1/2010 11:11PM

    If I were a better cook, I'd love to try a week myself :) I'm very much stuck in a rut at the moment, but life's crazy busy, so I'm OK with the rut.....for now! Can't wait to hear about your experience!!

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BRAVE_NEW_ME 6/1/2010 10:40PM

    Sounds like a great challenge! I'd love to hear how the week goes when you do it. Seems like it could really help someone break out of a food rut and find new and exciting healthy recipes...

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SIMPLEJOYS 6/1/2010 10:06PM

  Hi Mila!
I think you will find it quite easy to go vegetarian! Vegan is a lot more difficult (Heather did that for a year, but looks and feels much better being a regular vegetarian!). We do 3-5 vegetarian meals per week. A typical week might include:

Veggie burgers (we like ours with avocado, lettuce, tomato and onion! Unhinge jaw, and eat!) I eat one, DH eats 2. We sometimes have a vegetable with it, but not usually.

Pasta with vegetarian spaghetti sauce (usually with added sauteed veggies, such as onion, green peppers, loads of mushrooms). We sometimes have a serving size of meatless meatballs with it. Plus another vegetable.

Meatless Taco salad - we skip the meat, and have vegetarian refried beans, and black beans. Add your favorites and a dollop of (fat free for me) sour cream and salsa. Instead of chips, I bake some tortillas in the oven until crispy ...and crack them up for the salad bowl.

Some nights we have a hearty bean soup. Some nights, a grilled cheese. Or a make your own pizza night. It's all very delicious!!

Anyway, I'll be interested to hear what you do make - as I'm always in the market for new ideas!

Thanks for stopping by my page! You always make me smile!!


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    I love vegetarian food. It goes good with meat.
The trick to feeling full is loading up on veggies -- or whole grains if you like more carbs -- and remembering to include some good fats in every meal.

I like your challenge, but I'd never do it for a whole week. I think one veggie supper per week is a good starting point for me. Hubby would never join me, but the kids might.

Today's lunch is brown rice cooked in broth (it could be veggie, but its chicken) with curry, black beans and stewed tomatoes. I'm having falafels (chick pea "meat balls") with it. The falafels are deep-fried, unfortunately.


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Another run soon ... a 5k this time!

Friday, May 28, 2010

About a month ago my MIL asked DH if he and I wanted to run a 5K for a cause that someone she knows is trying to raise money for. He asked me, I said, "sure" and he said, "sign us up!" Well...I promptly forgot about it until a week ago when she said, "We'll see you on the 12th for your run!" What run?!?! Ohhhhhh yeah!! OOOOPS!
So needless to say I need to lace up my running shoes, STAT! This race is in 2 weeks. I am looking forward to having another race under my belt.

Oh, and on another note: Those 2 pounds have stayed away so I decided to update my ticker! It feels great. I am now 5 pounds away from my goal weight, which I reached just before I got pregnant. I am wondering if, now that I've had a baby, my body will want to stay at 120 (at least for a while). I know it was not easy losing the last 5 pounds last time. Will it be nearly impossible now?? I am *OK* with weighing 120, although I would like to lose the last 5. More than what the number on the scale says, I really just want to be fit and more toned. The actual number, whether it's 115 or 120 really doesn't matter too much.

Have a wonderful holiday weekend, everyone!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NICOLE12-01 6/1/2010 11:13AM

    Good luck with the upcoming race! I'm sure it will be great!

Congrats on keeping that 2 pounds away! When you get down around that "goal weight" it seems a little tricky sometimes! I love how you mentioned that the number doesn't really matter though...sometimes we focus so much on that stupid number and don't see the big picture. Fit and toned at 120 is much better then no muscle and cardio strength at 115! Whether it's 115 or 120, you look fantastic!

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SPARKNMOM 5/31/2010 10:35PM

    Woohoo on your upcoming run AND on the pounds staying off! I've had some difficulty lately keeping it under 120, but I will continue on. I'm determined!! :)

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DNJEN471 5/30/2010 6:26PM

    Congrats on the loss and have a great run!

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BRAVE_NEW_ME 5/30/2010 4:18AM

    Congrats on keeping those two pounds off!!! Moving the ticker downward is always so much fun...

Hope all goes well with your running in the next few weeks!

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SEPPIESUSAN 5/29/2010 1:39PM

    Good luck on your 5K and congrats on being so close to your goal weight!

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SIMPLEJOYS 5/29/2010 7:22AM

  YAY for those 2 pounds remaining gone gone gone! It helps me to stay focused when I have a goal - and a 5K sounds like a perfect kind of goal to me! You'll have fun and it will reinforce all of those good feelings that come with exercising.

I've backed off of my jogging dream (for right now, until I lose the weight that I've gained) but I will be motoring with my trekking poles every Sunday for a 5K and maybe??? more?? We'll see.

You just keep doing what you're doing. I find it very inspiring.
emoticon emoticon


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    Congrats on keeping those pounds off!

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IMAOFSEVEN 5/28/2010 10:25AM

    Good luck with the training, the run, and those last five pounds.

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Surrounding myself with healthy people...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

This week my diet has been a wreck! By "diet" I just mean my food intake, not diet as in "I'm on a diet." I am never on a diet. Speaking of... a few weeks ago, I went to get my nails done and the ladies there asked me if I was on a diet. I said no. Then the conversation went something like this:

It's time to stop losing weight!
Actually, I'm kind of at a standstill with weight loss right now. Maintaining mostly, except a few pounds up or down.
So what do you eat?
Normal food.
Do you eat carbs?
Lots of salad, right?
Well, I *like* salad, but I don't eat salad every day.
You must be at the health club for hours.
Well, um...nooooo. I have a baby at home! :)

Anyway...I have veered off topic. Back to the mess that is my diet. This week's "nourishment" has so far included Chinese food, pizza, Quidoba burrito, pasta, a bagel (yes, nail ladies, I eat carbs!), potato chips (and not the baked kind), Cold Stone, and who knows what else I am forgetting. It's like my body has decided to crave everything I have tried to limit or avoid for the past 3 years all in one week. I know it's bad for me. I know I'll be sorry. But for some reason it goes into my mouth anyway. Thank goodness that yesterday at lunch at least I resisted the urge to fill my drink cup with Coke Zero and chose unsweetened iced tea instead. Why did I even let the Coke Zero become a possibility?? I am chalking it up to a weird week. Maybe hormones? This is all so odd because I actually lost interest in this type of food a long time ago, somewhere around the halfway point to my goal weight. I *usually* prefer fresher, cleaner food. I avoid artificial sweeteners (Coke Zero???), HFCS, food with labels that look like they belong in a chemistry textbook. So what is going on??? I know this is just a little phase. No way do I want to eat this kind of junk in the long term.

Strangely enough, those two pounds that I lost a few blogs ago came back the next day, but now are gone again!! What the....???I eat like a maniac and lose 2 pounds? I think the scale is playing tricks on me. Not to mention I haven't exercised all week because I haven't been feeling well. I am feeling better now and plan to hit the gym hard core tomorrow. :)

Which brings me to the title of this blog. My best secret for getting back to where I want and need to be? Surrounding myself with healthy and fit people. This can mean physically (going for a run with my husband, going to the gym) or virtually (visiting Spark pages, reading blogs (on Spark and elsewhere), reading fitness and healthy food magazines, watching cooking shows when they are preparing light, summer-inspired meals. Even looking at photos of beautiful fruits and veggies. It gets me out of the gluttonous place and back into the mentality of taking care of my body inside and out. For example, just reading some awesome blogs here on Spark and receiving the latest issue of Clean Eating magazine in the mail has me excited to get my body moving again and preparing some fantastic-looking HEALTHY recipes!! Oh, and my favorite Food Network cooking show (which has been in repeats for the past year and on only sporadically) will be airing on the new Cooking Channel starting in June and will be on every day!! Saaaaweeeeeet!!! :)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    After this weekend away for the run -- which I think I'm going to bail on because I have a cold and its supposed to rain/snow for the next few days -- I need to do a detox. Phase 1 of South Beach. I've been off-kilter, too. I'll blame it on stress and the weather. No biggie. We know how to get back on track, right? What's your favourite show? I wonder if we get it here. I haven't read Clean Eating. I should.


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DNJEN471 5/26/2010 11:45PM

    Seriously- why do people think you can't eat carbs? That's just silly!

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SPARKNMOM 5/26/2010 9:42PM

    I very much agree that surrounding yourself w/ people who also focus on being healthy is a huge way to keep on track. I attribute the last 25 pounds I lost - which FINALLY brought me to goal - to the support I got here at SP!

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CARRAND 5/26/2010 9:33PM

    My secretary can't believe I eat any thing. I just don't eat everything at once any more. She is convinced I have some secret weight loss strategy like grapefruit or cabbage soup. I've tried to explain that moderation is really the key, and not giving up when you get off track. You've learned that lesson well.

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SPARKENISTA 5/26/2010 7:08PM

    Hi! I will answer your question on my blog on your SparkPage. I'm so glad you found me b/c I have been looking @ your page and your progress and you are amazing and inspiring!
-Those women @ your salon are jealous. They are trying to find an excuse not to devote themselves to their health and fitness and they are essentially saying that the only reason you have succeeded is that you are obsessed with it--implying that they are above that and have a healthier and more balanced (and less healthy?) approach to life. They are expressing sour grapes.
-I find that you are inspiring me. I admire the fact that you have maintained your weight for so long.
I may actually look for and prepare dishes that I haven't tried yet. Thank you.

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ASTER2606 5/26/2010 5:32PM

    I'm sure the 2# back up was water retention caused by more salt then you're used to eating. Who knows why you ate like that for a day or two and although it couldn't continue, it wasn't the end of the world either.

Interesting that people feel it is o.k. to comment on the weight of the thin and not think it's offensive. And all those leading questions about carbs and salad and hours at the gym... People want to think that if you've successfully lost weight that you never eat anything bad and that your diet is so restrictive that you never eat anything tasty and that your exercise regimen is so extreme that a "normal" person just couldn't do it.

You're winning this battle with persistence over a long period of time, with some really human slip ups now and then.

Back to your point, I totally agree that surrounding yourself with healthy people in a healthy environment is a good strategy. I also loved Zircadia's strategy to deal with cravings.

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ZIRCADIA 5/26/2010 5:17PM

    The "This is why you're thin" blog is good healthy food porn. :) hehehe. I've been trying hard to stop and think about what my body wants before I select and eat food. Maybe my mind/mouth is thinking I want a frozen burrito, but does my body really want that? And I think and my body feels like it wants some fresh veggies and some protein. Or my body says, DANA I NEED CARBS! And I try to make something healthy and carby. I dunno it's weird but it's kind of working. I have listened and said, shut up body I want some more PB and pretzel sticks (or whatever) once or twice, but overall I think it's sticking a bit. :)

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Organic somen noodles

Friday, May 21, 2010

Anyone try these? My husband picked these up at Wegmans on a whim and I had them for dinner last night. Wow, so good! I didn't even know they existed. They are thin wheat noodles, similar to angel hair pasta. But they only take like 2 minutes to cook! So tasty in a stir fry. :) Calories: 202 for 2 oz. My package came in bundles of three, and it says there are about 5 servings in the package. Would have been much easier to figure out the calories if they split it into 6 servings . As it is now, it is making my brain hurt. LOL. Anyway, I ate about half a bundle. I don't think I consumed too many calories with a couple TBSP of red chilli sauce in the stir fry and lots of veggies. Yummy and filling.

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SIMPLEJOYS 5/26/2010 4:13PM

  I have them in my cupboard right now! I've had the wheat, the buckwheat...and maybe one other flour. Our discount store has had them the last few times, but I've also seen them in Kroger in the specialty food aisle.

I'm with you about the bundling!!

Happy Wednesday, Mila!

Karen emoticon

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BRAVE_NEW_ME 5/22/2010 11:25PM

    I've used them mixed into stir fry before and really enjoyed them. I've also mixed them with a bit of peanut sauce and lime juice and used as a side. Yum!

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    The trouble with tracking food is the math. Groan.

I haven't heard of the noodles, but I'll keep my eyes peeled for them. We eat whole wheat spaghetti and a new fave is soba. Soba noodles are Japanese and made with buckwheat flour which is lower in glycemic index than wheat.


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SPARKNMOM 5/21/2010 9:39PM

    Not heard of them - sound great, tho!! :)

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DNJEN471 5/21/2010 9:54AM

    I have. They are awesome with regular pasta sauce too!

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ASTER2606 5/21/2010 9:34AM

    That sounds like a really great dinner. I haven't seen those particular noodles, but we sometimes get buckwheat soba noodles in the Asian section at the grocery store. Definitely a tasty change. Loved your amazing race entry too. I've just been busy w/work, gardening and this past weekend a 27 mile kayak camping trip. Today I am furloughed from work, so hope to catch up on stuff around the house. Hope you, your husband and Laila are all doing well.


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NORDAKOTA 5/21/2010 9:21AM

    That sounds awesome! I have to laught at myself, however, because when I first read it, I thought it said organic semen noodles. I was thinking EEEWWWW! LOL!

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Loving the 30 Day Shred! Thanks Jillian!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I'm getting shredded, baby! LOL. Well, maybe not yet but I like to think I'm on my way. :)

The weather has been a mess this week so I've been popping in this DVD instead of walking to the gym. Tomorrow it's supposed to be nice, so I plan to go and get a longer workout in. But at home I'm loving Jillian's DVD. I like that it's only 20 minutes or so - perfect because that's about as much time as baby gives me when she is not napping. Also, it's ideal for my attention span, which isn't too long when I am working out at home. In those 2o minutes I really feel like I'm getting a good workout and sweating quite a bit. So far I've only done Level 1. My lack of ability to do pushups is quite laughable - thank goodness no one is watching. I start out on the floor and only do about 4 (and I don't even go that close to the ground) before giving up and settling for wall pushups. Oh well, I will get there!

Anyone else doing 30 Day Shred or any of Jillian's other DVDs? Are you doing Level 1 for 30 days, then Level 2 and so forth, or are you switching them out sooner? Or doing each level for 10 days for a total of 30? Do you take days off or do 30 days in a row? How many calories are you burning with it?

I hope to collect all or most of her DVDs and build up a fitness library of sorts to use in my future workout room (a dream at this point; I only have about 2 square feet of space to work out in now).

Oh and I don't know if this is a fluke, but I stepped on the scale and I was 2 pounds lighter this morning!! I haven't updated my ticker to reflect that, since I am fully expecting to be back up those 2 pounds tomorrow. But if the scale reads the same again in the morning, I'm updating it!!

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MARELARK725 5/22/2010 6:25PM

    I love the 30 Day Shred...I actually think Level 2 is harder than Level 3! Haven't done it since my first trimester but am still doing Biggest Loser Cardio Max. They are such great (and short!) workouts and I love that they are a "no excuses" alternative to going to the gym. Keep at it and Great job!! emoticon

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SIMPLEJOYS 5/20/2010 11:46PM

  I'm so glad you found something you LOVE!! I've only done one "Biggest Loser" dvd and it was too hard on my old lady knees! I'm sure your body will let you know if you need a day off.

Good bye 2 pounds!! I'm sure they'll be gone!

Happy Friday, Mila!

Karen emoticon (couldn't resist! I do wall push ups too!)

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DNJEN471 5/20/2010 10:44PM

    I have actually not done any of Jillians DVD's and I totally should. I find her so motivating!

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PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 5/20/2010 12:12PM

    Here's to tomorrow's ticker update. Congrats!


By the way, I only have a 2'x2' workout space, too, plus my elliptical and weight machine. Its amazing what we can do in a tiny spot, eh? I'm motivated to get my workout room done, too.

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EADAWSON223 5/19/2010 2:15PM

    I have two of the biggest loser DVDs which I LOVE! But I did them for maybe 2 weeks and then my attention span went elsewhere. I would substitute another DVD once or twice a week just so your body doesn't get too used to the same exercises (I think you lose more weight by surprising your body). And you should rest one day a week, too. You deserve it!

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ANGIEMAE2401 5/19/2010 1:44PM

    I love 30 day shred! I did it before when it was first released but didn't stick with it--I also wasn't active on SP and really not motivated for myself! But now I'm on day 3 and it's amazing how much your body can change!

I plan on doing level 1 until I can go all the way through it--no stops for breath and no resting, then moving on to level 2... and I plan on doing it just about everyday... I wish I lived where I could walk to a gym--how lucky for you!!

I've heard her no more trouble zones is really good too! I can't wait to get it--its only about 9 bucks at Target! (so are the biggest loser dvd workouts)

Great blog!

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