I ran easy this morning. It felt wonderful! I did a walking 1.5 mile warm up and then ran-walked 8 miles for a total of 105 minutes of exercise. Change gets a bad rap. A lot of people don't like change. In fact, I was told that the only person who doesn't mind change is a wet baby! But after 6 weeks of sticking strictly to a training plan with lots of speed work, it just feels great to run for fun!!
Another change in my life is the eating. You who have been following me know I struggled October to December of 2016 and I gained. I tried to stick to SP limits. Just couldn't seem to do it. I switched to Weight Watchers, a program that has helped me over and over again. I even bought a new calculator for the new program. Just couldn't get my mind into it and when my nephew wanted to try it and couldn't find his program materials, I was happy to pass them off to him. I tried going back to my anti-psoriasis plan, but I have been psoriasis-free for 20 months (hooray!) now and have added back everything including the nutritious nightshade veggies (tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, etc) and see no reason to stick to such a strict program now. I looked at Beck green (The Complete Beck Diet for Life) and probably 10 diet books on my shelves. Sigh. Nothing inspired me.
Then I thought about Jenny Craig. For years I was down on anything packaged, but I know some people here on SP who have had success with it. I like to try new things, so I went for it. And when I tracked on SP I met all my nutrition goals, even sodium, as long as I avoided the salsa, ketchup and such flavorings they do allow. It was fun. Yummy -- far more tasty food than I was used to. It worked, too. Absolutely the easiest diet I have ever been on. They give you the plan. You buy the food. You eat the food, adding your own salads and veggies. I did 4 weeks only eating the JC food plan. I had no problem adhering to the plan. Then I started adding some of my own meals successfully. I have now bought no Jenny Craig foods for 2 weeks. In the 8 weeks I ate on Jenny Craig's plan I lost over 10 pounds. I've lost a couple more since. Probably the biggest thing it did for me was to reset my view of portions. It also helped me appreciate the help that truly tasty food is. It is much easier to stick to good portions when it is delicious.
When I eat the typical lunch I have eaten for much of my maintenance - plain whole grain (millet, quinoa or brown rice), plain beans (black, pintos, kidney, etc), plain veggies (asparagus, green beans, brussels sprouts, etc) with a little olive oil I want to overeat. Whereas JC's packaged foods are filling on fewer calories. And I always love getting to eat the whole thing, whether it is small or big. JC also allowed many more sweet treats than I had had for years and I enjoyed every bite. Perhaps because the sweets had fiber and protein they didn't seem to trigger more cravings, but seemed really satisfying. I ate many fewer bananas and much less fruit on JC. Hmm, how much will I add back?
So now it is a lot more work to plan and cook my own meals. I cook for hubby daily, often separate things, and for extended family at least once a week. I tend to just leave my food plain, which was great for anti-psoriasis, but I'm thinking I may need to spend more time taking care of myself. Some things are delicious just plain -- think raspberries. And some almost plain, like the haddock I had yesterday with a squeeze of lemon and a touch of sea salt and twist of ground pepper. I also created a quick delicious lunch yesterday from leftover whole wheat organic Alma spaghetti, veggies, and egg whites. I added one tablespoon of the low sodium teriyaki sauce, which I previously would have thought was unnecessary but added some good taste.
So after years of me thinking that any food that was not absolutely natural, unprocessed, and plain (lemon, garlic, herbs, spices allowed) was suspect, I am willing to change. I'm looking to balance my new-found desire for taste and convenience with my need for nutrition and fuel for my running.
I am looking for recipes, especially ones I can make big batch and freeze leftovers for me. And if my husband or daughter and her family would eat it, all the better. I expect the next couple weeks is going to be crucial to me figuring out if I can maintain this lower weight I really like!