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BLC20: Weekend challenge - food tracker and recipes

Friday, November 09, 2012

So I hate the food tracker on spark. Maybe I'm just adverse to it because everything I eat is my own recipe that isn't in the food tracker and to create a grouping of everything I've used (which I then have to find because for some reason, spark likes to put pre packaged, processed foods BEFORE the raw, natural healthy foods that I'm looking for - which is a whole other annoying story) and then estimate approximately how much of the recipe I ate is just time consuming. So I'll make my own tracker for the weekend. I'm just going to update this every day instead of making a new blog each day, so if you REALLY want to know what I'm eating each day, you'll just have to check the blog each night. The real reason behind this? I want my 5K blog to still be near the top of my list. Why? Because I want people to see it because I am proud of it (selfish much?). Anyways, here we go!

Breakfast: 1 egg, 5 cherry tomatoes = 85 calories
Snack: 1/2 larabar = 100 calories
Lunch: butternut squash/apple soup (100 calories), apple (75 calories) = 200 calories
Snack: handful of grapes (25 calories), pumpkin/oat/craisin "cookie" (50 calories), handful dried apricots (50) = 125 calories
Snack: homemade apple sauce (75 calories) with chia seeds (25 calories) and raspberry preserves (50 calories) = 150 calories
Dinner: 1.5 servings veggie stew = 200 calories
Total = 860 calories = 900 calories

Veggie stew recipe = 8.5 one cup servings
1 onion = 50 calories
4 cloves garlic = 20 calories
2 cans no sodium diced tomatoes = 175 calories
1 eggplant = 150 calories
2 zucchini = 100 calories
Frozen corn = 125 calories
1 can reduced sodium black beans = 350 calories
2 stalks celery = 10 calories
1 bell pepper = 30 calories
1 jalapeno pepper = 4 calories
1 chili pepper = 20 calories
Total = 1050 calories
Per serving = 125 calories

If you're curious: it's a one pot recipe. Sautee onion and garlic in olive oil and spices (salt, pepper, chili power, cumin, turmeric, cayenne pepper). When done, add all the ingredients (I did in the order that I have listed. They were all staggered as I kept chopping up things and just adding it to the pot). I just kept adding stuff to it until it tasted right and kept on adjusting the spices - I'm trying to increase my ability to tolerate spicy foods, so that explains the jalapeno pepper and chili pepper along with the chosen spices. It would also be good using Italian spices (oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, salt, and pepper). Just keep stirring and adjusting to how you like it!

Pumpkin/oat cookies

I just estimated this one in my head. It was easy, just 4 ingredients! I did pumpkin, oats, handful of craisins, handful of pecans, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, and pumpkin spice. They're yummy!

Apple sauce recipe
I just created this on the fly. Normally, each 1/2 cup serving is about 50 calories, but I ended up with a little bit left over, so I just ate it anyways!
In a crock pot, put in peeled, cored, sliced apples (I do about 10 cheap - aka soft apples. They're in the mixed container at the farmers market from the stand I go to. It's a combination of gala, granny smith, mutzu, and who knows what else she's trying to get rid of). Then add the zest and juice of one lemon, 1 cinnamon stick, a lot of cinnamon, and some water. Cook on low for 7 hours or so with stirring occasionally and then blend with an immersion blender (after you take out the cinnamon stick!).

So that's it for today! I'm stuffed! I haven't had a veggie stew in a while and it was quite delicious. It's not what I had in mind for dinner tonight, but I needed to use the eggplant and other veggies I had. Maybe I'll finally be able to cook that black bean pumpkin chili I've been wanting to make OR an acorn squash recipe I have! Eventually I'll get to it, but I now I have 7 servings of veggie stew left! I'm sure it would freeze well, but I'm not a huge fan of freezing foods unless it's homemade stocks, fruits for smoothie, or meat. It makes sense, doesn't? Just stick it in the freezer and then I won't have to cook at some point in the future! It would also allow me to cook the other foods I want to try! But, I just like to eat the same thing over and over again until I move onto the next thing. Oh well. I'll see what happens tomorrow!


Today has not been going very well. I'm feeling the side effects of the flu vaccine all in my head and face. At least my stomach is fine, actually, very fine! I'm so hungry today! Hopefully I'll end up going back to the gym to bike for an hour since I wasn't satisfied with this morning's workout. But I'm going to start tracking now (I'm procrastinating and I need to calculate for my own sanity).

Breakfast: one egg, 5 cherry tomatoes = 85 calories
Snack: 1/2 apple while making apple sauce (40 calories) and a pear (100 calories) = 150 calories
Snack: 2 almond butter/banana muffin thingies that I made = 200 calories
Lunch: veggie stew = 125 calories
Snack: kale chips (30 calories), handful of grapes (50 calories) = 100 calories
Snack: banana/oat cookies = 120 calories
Snack: the rest of the banana/oat cookies = 180 calories
Dinner: 1 cup veggie stew = 125 calories
Dessert: hot pumpkin = 100 calories
Dessert: dates and almonds = 150 calories
Total: 1335 = 1400

Almond butter/banana muffin thingies

I made them into muffins and used almond butter instead. Yum!

Banana oat cookies

I did banana, oats, craisins, and powdered peanut butter. I forgot to add the spices! They're still yummy though! Regardless, each one comes out to about 40 calories.

Kale chips
These are DELICIOUS!! And so easy to make! I used curly kale (I think it's also known as dinosaur kale?). What you do is simply take kale and rip it off the rib and rip it into bite size pieces. Put them on a sheet pan with olive oil, salt, pepper, and whatever other spices you want to add (I did paprika!). Bake at 300 for approximately 20 minutes. Then enjoy! Just make sure you don't have olive oil leftover on the bottom of the pan or else the kale in those oily patches won't become crispy. It might be easier to mix it all in a bowl and then lay the chips out on a sheet pan. But yum!!

Hot pumpkin
Well, can't have chocolate this weekend (although I'm really craving some - more to come), so I made hot pumpkin! Simply whisk milk (I used almond milk) with pumpkin puree, add spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, pumpkin spice), vanilla extract, sweetener if you want any, and enjoy! I created this on a whim and it wasn't half bad! It would be better with real milk since the almond has so much flavor, but hey, you work with what you can.

In other news, I'm STILL hungry. Is hungry the right word? I don't know. But I'm REALLY craving sugar and MILK chocolate. I would love a reeces or m&ms or something! The thing is, the last time I had m&ms, I thought they were disgusting! I'm sure I would find a bar of hershey's milk chocolate disgusting as well (the first ingredient is sugar!). But I REALLY want some! I want MILK chocolate so bad and I don't know why! The main thing is is that I can't even have any unless I want to be in the bathroom and have tremendous stomach pain for days after (dang lactose intolerance!). I would LOVE some pizza too. Not the pizza part, but the melted cheese part. I could really go for some mozzarella cheese. Gosh. Now I'm making myself even more hungry! I just want that ooy-gooy goodness! Yum! Ugh. Any alternatives? I don't think so. I'm CONSIDERING making more of that hot pumpkin...or maybe I'll just make hot chocolate and not get the points for today. But I don't really want hot chocolate, it's too "grown up". I want a little kid dessert. Screw all this paleo crap (which is actually quite delicious and AMAZING!!), I want the real stuff! MAYBE I'll make my black bean brownies tomorrow. Those are DELICIOUS and taste just like brownies. They're amazing. But what will I do with all the leftovers? I can see myself eating ALL of it, especially with this craving. Blahh. I just want cheese and milk and chocolate. Why does this have to be so difficult!?!?

Are you craving something dense and rich, like cheese, butter, peanut butter, fast food, or heavy desserts? Your body is probably desperate for calories. Nine times out of ten, when you crave extremely calorie-rich foods, it’s because you haven’t been getting enough fuel for a while (days, weeks, or even months) and your body is pretty peeved about it. This is amazingly common for raw folks. Even when it feels like we eat a lot, our cuisine is so bulky that we aren’t actually getting that much energy from our meals. Your body knows it will get the best caloric bang per bite by driving you towards energy-dense items, so when you under-eat for a while, you’ll feel like making a bee-line to the first jar of peanut butter that crosses your path. The key to battling this craving isn’t necessarily to eat more fatty foods, but to eat more, period. Try entering your daily food intake on a nutrient calculator like FitDay or Cron-O-Meter—you may be surprised at how little you’re actually consuming. Amp up your overall intake, and the heavy food cravings will typically subside. (One caveat: sometimes cheese cravings are also due to dairy withdrawal or low sodium levels.)

Well, actually this pretty much sums it up. I know I don't eat a lot so I'm sure my body is just telling me to eat. I also have low sodium levels (been dairy free now for 2 months, so the withdrawal phase is probably over), so it's like a bing bing bing! I know I SHOULD be eating more. I know the scale is GOING to be up tomorrow. It has to be. I've eaten SO much food today, and although it's within my range, it's A LOT of food for me. I better be able to run tomorrow. But I'm glad that this craving has a basis, it just doesn't really say what to do, it just says what to do to prevent them!


Breakfast: 1 egg, 5 cherry tomatoes = 85 calories
Lunch: 1 larabar = 190 calories
Snack: 1 pear = 100 calories
Snack: homemade apple sauce (50 calories) with coconut yogurt (80 calories) and chia seeds (20 calories) = 150 calories
Snack: 1 stalk celery with hummus (50 calories??) and some grapes (30 calories) = 100 calories
Dinner: veggie stew = 125 calories
Dessert: some carob chips = 25 calories
Total: 775 calories = 800

Hummus recipe

Or some variation of it. It's like pesto - just keep adding the ingredients until it tastes right. Therefore, I have no idea how many calories the entire recipe is and how much I made since I didn't measure. So it's all about estimating. There is a spark recipe on here that says 6 servings if 200 calories. Well, I'm getting at least 15 servings since I just have a little bit at a time (and I only used a quarter of the amount of tahini that was suggested, so that will greatly decrease the calorie count!). I could be really bad estimating this... Anyways, it tastes good!

I REALLY planned on making hot carob tonight. It's a test. I've sampled the carob chips and they aren't that bad. They taste like chocolate and have a really sweet, distinct, unique after taste. But the test part - chocolate has been bothering my stomach. I'm not sure if it's because it "may contain milk", that I'm eating too much of it at once, or that it contains soy lecithin. Well, the carob chips contain soy lecithin as well, so if my stomach hurts after having the carob chips, then I know the soy lecithin is the problem. If it doesn't, then chocolate is the problem :( I would REALLY enjoy a hot "chocolatey" drink right now, but my stomach is saying "nope, I don't want it". It's so annoying! Perhaps tomorrow I'll be able to try it. It is kind of annoying though. I was really looking forward to it!


Not good, not good at all. I was doing good - until I got back from the gym! I don't know what it is about the afternoons! Maybe I should eat a bigger lunch, although I was stuffed after lunch today!

Breakfast: 1 egg, 5 cherry tomatoes = 85 calories
Snack: 1/2 larabar = 115 calories
Lunch: veggie stew (125 calories), a huge apple (100 calories) = 225 calories
Snack: 1 stalk celery with some hummus (50 calories), grapes (50 calories), tangerine (40 calories) = 140 calories
Snack: apple with powdered peanut butter = 150 calories
Snack: powdered peanut butter with carob chips = 250 calories
Total so far: 965

I really don't think I'm going to eat dinner. That powdered peanut butter with melted carob chips, although delicious, was very filling! I'm glad! It was EXACTLY what I was craving! It was DELICIOUS! Except I STILL really want that ooey-gooey goodness of cheese. But my stomach hurts right now, and I can't help but think it's due to the carob chips. If this is the case, it will confirm that I have a problem with soy lecithin, NOT dark chocolate (no dairy products, already checked!). That would be GREAT since it means I can still have chocolate! HOWEVER, this means that I can't have the vegan dairy alternatives, which are often made with soy products. So. It's very difficult. I think I'm going to try it though anyways. I REALLY want some cheese right now! I'm half tempted to go to whole foods in my pajamas (baggy sweat pants and a hoodie that is 3 sizes too big!) and buy some vegan cheese and stick it on top of some roasted veggies with some tomatoes and call it a night. But I'm stuffed and I STILL feel like eating! I don't understand. If I don't eat dinner, I'll be ok. I think. I don't feel like eating dinner, but the night is still young (it's only 6:15!!!).

The scale is also starting to discourage me. I understand the scale being up 0.4 lbs yesterday, I get it. But for it to be up 0.4 lbs from yesterday, that I don't get. I can only hope my body was being slow in adjusting to overeating on Saturday. But what am I doing today? Overeating today! Ok, Ok, I know it's not all about the number on the scale, I get that. I've had SO many NSVs recently and I know that is what should matter, NOT what the scale says. And quite frankly, the scale can keep going down, I still don't like my body. I just don't understand how a "healthy" BMI is 10 lbs away for me. I still have all these rolls of fat and they aren't going to go away in 10 lbs. I don't see them going away in 20! But I'll just have to see what happens.

If I end up staying in Charlotte and not moving in January, then I'm going to contact a friend of mine. She's a body builder and she can get me into shape! Ok, I'm already in shape, but she'll be that extra motivation that I need. If I move back to Raleigh, then I'll hit up a family friend who STs a lot (her brother is a body builder). If I move to Charleston, then I'll probably find a personal trainer/nutritionist. I REALLY want to get to my goal, but right now (and I'm not saying my motivation is lost) all I want to do is eat! At least I'm working out. But c'mon mind, stop wanting to eat all the time! And I need to stop giving into it!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I may try some of those recipes, they sound yummy!

    Try and keep your sodium level above 500mg average, that is super important! Sodium and potassium pretty much run the majority of your bodies signal pathways, and cell membranes so they are vital!

    Maybe you could try adding in some beans or lentils? They are raw, and really cheap and easy to cook. They provide protein and are pretty low cal. If you have a pressure cooker, you could make awesome bean/lentil curry, I eat that 2-3 times a week and it keeps me really full.

    Good luck!
    2018 days ago
    Not much protein! I hate the tracker on Spark too, but if you ever want to try it, the one on My Fitness Pal is much easier to use, and I've found a lot of recipes I use are already in there which is really useful.
    2019 days ago
    Great blog! Emmy and I are making those cookies today!!! They look yummy!

    2019 days ago
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