Monday, January 12, 2009
Hmm. Don't look at Lindt chocolates that you can't eat, and then read a NYT article about food online, if you don't want to get really hungry.
Annoyed but not discouraged by my weight. I was 142 today, which means my weight has eased up two full pounds in the past few days, even though I've been sticking to my plan 100 percent. I hope that holiday reckless eating didn't mess with my system and make me unable to lose within my normal calorie range... hopefully I'll see a loss - hopefully back to 140 and THEN some - soon! Maybe I have PMS. I have such unpredictable cycles.
To answer Marlie's question, I made seven servings out of my Mexican lasagna (I always do seven servings of my batch meals - one week's worth) and each serving has 463 calories. Both of my recipes are really good this week!
Here's this week's menu:
Breakfast - coffee with soymilk, green tea, pumpkin pie smoothie
Midmorning snack - 2oz. walnuts, Braeburn apple
Lunch - Mexican lasagna
Afternoon snacks - citrus central - clementine, navel orange, grapefruit, dry rolled oats mixed into vanilla yogurt
Dinner - Brown rice with salmon and Asian veggies
Snack/Second course of dinner :) - Salad of red leaf lettuce, 5 baby carrots, 1 red pepper, 9 grape tomatoes, spices, and some kind of dressing (still using my crazy fat free/sugar free/calorie free Thousand Island, but after that switching to vinegar and spices and maybe some oil)
This evening I went to Body Pump and Hi/Low, which is a rather old-school class with step and floor aerobics and then abs and stretching. For some reason I get really intimidated in Hi/Low, but I think if I went more often I'd get the hang of it and feel more confident. Anyway, it was two hours of exercise but nothing that got me REALLY sweaty or anything. I still think I can kick my own butt, cardio-wise, better than any class can.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
I've had a very uneventful weekend, and I don't mind one bit! My weight had been holding steady at 141.4 for a few days, but today went up to 141.8. I'm not discouraged. I know I am doing healthy things for my body no matter what the scale says. I've been eating on plan, drinking a lot, especially decaf green tea, getting good nights' sleep and getting up early even though it's the weekend, and getting good workouts at the gym.
Yesterday I did my cooking for the upcoming week, which is making today feel all the more relaxing. (I also did my laundry yesterday too -I can be really lazy today if I want!) I made Mexican lasagna and brown rice with salmon and Asian veggies.
Mexican lasagna - I have made this before, but changed the recipe a bit this time. I boiled up a couple different kind of beans - I think I used black and red, it really doesn't matter - all beans are so healthy. Especially when you boil dry beans instead of using the canned version - there's salt in those cans. I never use canned beans anymore.
Anyway, after the beans were cooked, I added two bags of frozen pepper and onion stir fry. The peppers are all different colors. I also added cilantro, cayenne pepper, and cumin. Finally, I stirred in some fat-free cottage cheese. I had actually meant to buy fat-free sour cream and got the cottage cheese by mistake, but it ended up being a good mistake. I was reading on Smurfette's blog yesterday about superfoods (from the Abs diet) and the only food on the list I wasn't eating - or at least, I THOUGHT I wasn't eating, was whey protein. Well, it turns out that there is whey protein in cottage cheese, so now I can check that one off my list! (I was proud that most of the items on that list were what make up most of what I eat...though I haven't been eating berries lately ever since I switched over from berry smoothies to pumpkin ones. I never liked the berry seeds in the smoothies.)
Anyway. I coated a casserole dish with some extra-virgin olive oil and laid down a whole weat lavash roll-up. I bought these because I couldn't find any good whole wheat tortillas - they all had "enriched flour" in the ingredients and I think that means they only used a little whole wheat but also used white wheat. This Lavash stuff I bought...it's flat bread meant for wraps, but it just happened to fit perfectly into my casserole dish - almost exactly the same size rectangles. So I layered them with the bean/veggie/cottage cheese mixture, and then sprinkled a little fat-free cheddar on top of each layer. I baked for 30 minutes. Can't wait to eat it!
The brown rice with salmon and Asian veggies is pretty straightforward. The Asian veggies I used were two bags of frozen Oriental Stir Fry veggies (broccoli, carrot, etc...) and a can each of water chestnuts, baby corn, and straw mushrooms (each rinsed to remove some of the sodium). The only other thing I added was some ground ginger.
Friday, January 09, 2009
No news is good news? Usually when I'm doing well I feel like writing about it, but for the past few days I've just been humming along just fine without many big insights to share.
Eating's been going fine. I'm sticking to the plan with the adjustments I made last time I blogged. And I seem to be re-adjusted to my healthy calorie level.
Sleeping's been going fine. Such a priority. A few nights ago I had trouble falling asleep - that's the worst - when you actually put in the effort to get a full night's sleep and can't. And it wasn't caffeine's fault either - I've only been drinking regular coffee very early in the morning and decaf late in the morning lately - none in the p.m. hours. But for the most part, I've been getting great sleep lately.
Exercise has been going fine. I am in a Saturday-Monday-Wednesday pattern for Body Pump. My cardio lately's been on machines - elliptical, treadmill, or the stair stepper that looks like an escalator. I've been doing mostly 45-65 minutes of cardio per day.
My weight went down to 140.0 yesterday, but bounced back up to 141.4 today for no discernable reason. Seeing how I was 134 before I fell off the wagon for the holiday season, I have a ways to go to get back. I have no doubt in my ability to do so, but it's going to happen slowly. I'm okay with that, but if I can get there or pretty close by vacation time - I leave for the Dominican Republic on Feb. 16 - I will be very grateful to mother nature. ;) That would require me to lose seven pounds in five and a half weeks.
Hmm. I guess I do have an insight afterall. The last time I blogged, I wrote that I was feeling shaky about my ability to stay on the wagon. Just now, I wrote that I have no doubt that I will. It's nice how a few days' worth of momentum increases my confidence. :)
Lastly, here's a picture of me from mid-December 2008, right before I fell off the wagon. I was feeling thin, so I wore all tight clothes - size 3 jeans and a small top. I look at this picture now, with all this extra weight, and my reaction is that I was looking okay, but would still ultimately like thinner thighs!
According to my weight report, I weighed 136 pounds the morning this photo was taken (though I had just eaten birthday cake...). My weight was fluctuating between 134-137 or so.
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
I have two types of adjustments I need to write about. The first is about my body adjusting. A few wise Sparkers commented on my blog yesterday that perhaps I confused my body with the drastic eating changes over the holidays and that could be why I'm experiencing hunger now with the same calorie level that didn't cause hunger before. I think that might actually be right - or even if it isn't, I'm going forward with the attitude that I need to be patient and let my body re-adjust to the calorie level that worked so well for me for four months. Hopefully it will get easier. I should remind myself that even when I'm feeling a little hungry late evening, if I ignore it the gnawing usually goes away when I go to bed.
Random - have any of you seen the commercial for the new Weight Watchers Momentum program? It's funny...the furry little monster they use to symbolize hunger actually does look like HUNGER to me. Hehe.
The other type of adjustment I need to make is to my new 2009 rules I blogged about on Sunday. Some of the rules I set have proven helpful, while others I'm just going to keep on breaking unless I change them.
*Two coffees & two teas before breakfast (second coffee may be consumed WITH breakfast) - this rule is still helpful and I'll keep it.
*No snacks until 2nd period and not until 2nd coffee and breakfast are finished- still helpful!
*The rule about limiting my mid-morning snack to a piece of fruit and some nuts has been hard for me to stick to. I will change this rule to say that I should START with a piece of fruit and some nuts, and have something significant to drink. Wait a while, and if I'm still hungry and it's not lunchtime yet, it's OK to have some more.
*The rule about eating just lunch at lunchtime, about spacing out afternoon snacks, and about what time to eat lunch and dinner have been tough to stick to. I will lighten up on myself about that, as long as I save SOMETHING for later in the afternoon. Oranges and grapefruit are excellent choices for me because they take work to peel and eat, so I tend to save those for late afternoon. And definitely having the salads waiting at home is an excellent change. Anything easy to eat that I have at with me at school, I tend to eat too soon! But I like that I'm finding ways to accommodate for my lack of willpower!
One suggestion I got for dealing with evening hunger was to add protein to my salads. I really like this suggestion, but the percent of my calories from protein already tends to be higher than what SP recommends. Also, I'm having trouble deciding where this protein should come from. Definitely not peanut butter, haha! Not only would that make for an unusual salad, but peanut butter is quite the trigger food for me. I'll make a note to look at options next time I'm at the grocery store - chicken, shrimp, or some cottage cheese (on the side) might work. But this change wouldn't kick in until next week, because this week's already all planned out. The easiest thing would be to find a salad dressing that has protein, but there probably is no such thing. I have a hard enough time finding a salad dressing without unhealthy ingredients I try to avoid.
Okay, now I've blogged my way past the point that I can be on time to Body Combat at the gym at 5:30. Wah. But I can still pack up and get there in time for at least a half hour of cardio before Body Pump starts at 6:30...maybe even closer to 45 minutes if I rush!
PS - I'm at 141.2 today. I've been losing about a pound a day so far this week. Fun times!
PPS - We had a two-hour delay this morning due to snow/sleet/general January in Massachusetts weather. So I'm quite well-rested today. Ahhhh. :)
PPPS - I need to go shopping tomorrow for more salad stuff. Mental note - get lettuce, grape tomatoes, red peppers, and dressing (I recommend Maple Farms Sugar-Free Raspberry, it tastes great!).
PPPPS - I'm not getting to the gym any faster with all these last minute comments here............... heh.
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
Man, I made myself a lot of rules the other day! I don't really need the exercise ones. I am an exerciser. A few thoughts on the topic of exercise:
*Anyone else notice how much more crowded the gym was on Jan. 1 than on Dec. 31? Yeah, I went both of those days - rather proud of that. ;)
*I thought the gym was crowded on Jan. 1 until I saw how crowded it was last night at 6:30. Finding a parking spot (or an elliptical, for that matter) involved the stalk-and-strike method commonly used at the mall right before Christmas! Isn't it fantastic that everyone made a resolution to get healthier. Too bad that makes my gym so crowded the air's stuffy. Yuck.
*My workouts are much, much better after a) plenty of sleep and b) plenty of food. I was well-rested all break, and overate a lot, and had some of my best workouts. Now it's only Tuesday, and I've only been eating on-plan since Sunday, and I'm already feeling worn down, tired, and hungry. :(
I beat myself up for binge eating, but honestly, maybe my body is trying to tell me something with all this hunger. For the past few weeks I've been on-and-off with sticking with an eating plan. When I do make a plan, it's usually between 2,100-2,200 calories (more - up to 2,600 - on the days I went skiing). This amount worked so well for me for four months. I was losing weight slowly and steadily, and only suffered mild hunger.
Then the holiday season came, and for half a month or so there were several days where I ate way, way, WAY more than 2,100 calories. I couldn't even guesstimate.
So why is it that ever since I've tried to get back on track, I've been so challenged by hunger? A few times I've done well all day only to finally give in at night, adding far more calories beyond my range, because I was hungry. (Well, these binges would START because I was hungry...and then continue because they were fun and I like to eat.) I can't honestly tell if I'm really hungrier now, or just noticing it more. But I felt so much better when I ate more. More energetic, more awake.
If it weren't for my looming trip to the Carribbean, I'd just increase my calorie range. But right now I'm still 8 pounds heavier than I was before the holidays and it seems to all be settling into my belly. I look much worse now at 142 than I did when I was at this same weight a few months ago, because the fat distribution is all different. There is no way I will be happy in a bikini on the beach looking like this. I have to take this extra weight off and I have a time limit - just under six weeks. Great...just what I've been railing against - I really believe in healthy, slow change rather than extreme measures for fast results.
So.....I have no idea how fast this weight will come off. To be honest I'm still feeling quite shaky in my ability to even stick with an eating plan. Right now, despite having had an extra apple an hour ago (which brought my calorie total to 2,207), I'm feeling a gnawing hunger and would LOVE to go raid the kitchen - but I won't, not tonight.
This is really a tricky situation for me. I KNOW I'd feel better and have better workouts if I increase my calories and sleep. I know I will have evening hunger if I don't...maybe it'll go away, maybe being extra hungry will make me lose extra weight, I just don't know. The one thing that's for sure is that extra sleep will help. So.......I should go to bed! Good night!
Oh wait. I forgot to write about how I'm doing with my new goals! Duh. Exercise - great, although this evening I didn't have enough energy for a really good one Sleep - really good Sunday night, OK Monday night. Hopefully good tonight. Eating - stuck with the timing plan perfectly on Monday. Today I did OK, but ate lunch and dinner too early. The evening salads are working out GREAT - after I eat them seems to be the only time all day I feel pleasantly full, although the feeling doesn't last long. I have this really delicious, really low-calorie dressing, but it has Splenda in it so it's not perfectly healthy. I've also been sprinking on some Mrs. Dash. I LOVE the bright healthy colors of my salads! Red leaf lettuce is really good!
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