Where Have I Been?

I’m sorry. It’s been a VERY long time since my last blog. I feel like there is much to talk about, but not enough time (or energy) to do so. But, there are a few things I’d like to share with you, so here I go!

First, I AM still eating healthy. Well, 5 or 6 days out of the week. Some of my new favorite healthy foods are Greek yogurt mixed with either honey or chocolate PB2 with raspberries…

20130826-225542.jpg

…boiled green beans with red potatoes, stuffed bell peppers, unique hummus flavors such as red lentil hummus or edamame hummus, and canned tomato juice. I’m still having a lot of fun trying lots of new healthy recipes!

As far as exercise, I started a women’s cardio kickboxing class a few weeks ago. I’d love to go into detail about the class, but I’ve got a lot to fit into this one post, so I won’t. I will say though, I’m definitely loving the class! It’s hard work! I drank 3 bottles of water my first class and was completely drenched in sweat that first night. We did a lot of pushups, jumping jacks, burpees, crunches, sit ups, wall jumps, and lots of punching and kicking into bags. Unfortunately because of my schedule, I didn’t get to go to class last week. I’ve got 2 more weeks left of class that I’ve paid for so hopefully I get to go to all the classes this week. (It’s a Tuesday/Thursday night class.)

Other than the kickboxing, my only other exercise is a weekly run. My newest accomplishments are that I ran at a 4 mile per hour pace (which is slow to most but it’s a nice jog for me) for 20 minutes straight the other day without stopping. I don’t know how I did it, but I did! Also, I beat my fastest time for running one mile last week. I ran one mile in 13 minutes and 20 seconds. I beat my time by over a minute, so I was pretty proud of that.

As far as my weight loss, I’m slowly going down and it’s taking longer because I’m just not as strict as I have been in the past. I’ve lost 84.4 pounds, and my lowest weight was 287.6.

My BFF, Megan, just sent me a picture she put together using a before and after shot of myself. It’s so crazy how much different I look that I wanted to share it with you! Thanks again Megan for sending me that!

20130826-225803.jpg

Some other great news I have is that I recently started back to school! I have been out of school for a little over 3 years. Even then, the last school I was in was for culinary, so it wasn’t really a normal class with tests and studying and homework. I’m going to have to put a lot of effort into this class (human anatomy and physiology) so that I can then enroll into the radiology technician program. As you’ve probably read from previous posts, I’m sick of my job and my life needs direction and I want a CAREER not just a job. I’m finally focused enough to put that goal into action, so that’s exactly what I’m doing, and taking this class is the first step!

Even though I have a lot going on right now, I’m going to make an effort to get back into posting pretty regularly. I miss it! I mean, who doesn’t love talking about themselves? 🙂 Haha

And last but not least, it’s national dog day, so I thought I’d share a few of my favorite pictures of my dog, Pudgy.

20130826-225931.jpg

20130826-230004.jpg

20130826-230032.jpg

20130826-230049.jpg

🙂

Advertisements

My Weekly Meal Plan

It seems like I’m always talking about my meals, but I don’t think I’ve fully talked about my meal planning.

So here it is!

A little more about my weekly meal planning:

First, I start my week on Monday, so in my brain Monday is the first day of the week. Towards the end of my week, usually on Thursday night or Friday, I’m brainstorming about what I’d like to eat for the following week.

Once I decide on what to have for breakfast, lunch, and dinner Monday through Friday, I make a grocery list. That way, I don’t forget anything and I don’t end up buying extra, unneeded stuff.

I usually go to the grocery store on Saturday or Sunday, depending on what my schedule is like. On Sunday evenings, I start prepping for the next 5 days.

Here’s a look at what my meal plan is for this week.

Monday

Breakfast-Cheerios w/ skim milk.

Lunch-Tuna salad salad with celery, walnuts, apples, and fat free mayo served with a side of my homemade healthy honey mustard dressing and homemade chips and salsa.

Snack-Wonton wrapped mozzarella cheese sticks, Veggie Krunch, pecan nut butter.

Dinner-BBQ chicken foil packet w/ purple potatoes, red and green bell pepper, squash, and green onion topped w/ a little cheddar cheese and boiled cabbage on the side.

Evening snack-Small bowl of Cheerios.

Tuesday

Breakfast-Cheerios w/ skim milk.

Lunch-Tuna salad salad with celery, walnuts, apples, and fat free mayo served with a side of my homemade healthy honey mustard dressing and homemade chips and salsa.

Snack-Veggie Krunch, zucchini pizza bites, wonton wrapped mozzarella cheese sticks.

Dinner-Honey mustard chicken foil packet w/ red potatoes, green and red bell pepper, squash, and green onion served with a side of boiled cabbage.

Evening snack-Small bowl of Cheerios.

Wednesday

Breakfast-Cheerios w/ skim milk.

Lunch-Chicken deli meat sandwich w/ pepper jack cheese, can of low sodium tomato juice, cutie mandarin orange.

Snack-Wonton wrapped mozzarella cheese sticks, chips and salsa, Veggie Krunch.

Before workout snack-Tablespoon of nut butter.

After workout snack-Tablespoon of nut butter.

Dinner-BBQ chicken foil packet w/ purple potatoes, red and green bell pepper, squash, and green onion topped w/ a little cheddar cheese and boiled cabbage on the side.

Evening snack-Small bowl of Cheerios.

Thursday

Breakfast-Cheerios w/ skim milk.

Lunch-Chicken deli meat sandwich w/ pepper jack cheese, can of low sodium tomato juice, cutie mandarin orange.

Snack-Wonton wrapped mozzarella cheese sticks, chips and salsa, zucchini pizza bites.

Before workout snack-Tablespoon of nut butter.

After workout snack-Tablespoon of nut butter.

Dinner-Honey mustard chicken foil packet w/ red potatoes, green and red bell pepper, squash, and green onion served with a side of boiled cabbage.

Evening snack-Small bowl of Cheerios.

Friday

Breakfast-Cheerios w/ skim milk.

Lunch-Chicken deli meat sandwich w/ pepper jack cheese, can of low sodium tomato juice, cutie mandarin orange.

Snack-Wonton wrapped mozzarella cheese sticks, chips and salsa, zucchini pizza bites.

Dinner-BBQ chicken foil packet w/ purple potatoes, red and green bell pepper, squash, and green onion topped w/ a little cheddar cheese and boiled cabbage on the side.

Evening snack-Small bowl of Cheerios.

As for Saturday and Sunday, I try to use my leftovers from the week.

Saturday

Breakfast-Toast with either a vegetable egg scramble or maybe breakfast chicken sausage and skim milk.

Lunch-Leftover chicken and vegetables from the week made into something delicious such as a stir fry served with brown rice.

Dinner-Going out to dinner.

Sunday

Breakfast-Cheerios w/ skim milk.

Lunch-Leftover chicken sausage from a couple weeks ago that I put in the freezer served with leftover lettuce to make a salad and whatever vegetables I have still left in my fridge.

Dinner-I usually pick up a pre-made meal or salad from the grocery store and eat it for dinner on Sunday night.

Evening snack-Small bowl of Cheerios.

Then I just start it all over again!

I have found that meal planning has been extremely beneficial for me. I always know what I’m going to eat so there are no surprises and I don’t have to make last minute, unhealthy decisions.

As always though, things do come up and my meal plan might change slightly. Either way, I make the most of it and still strive for pretty healthy choices if I am put in a situation where I can’t eat my chosen meals.

I’ve also found that I LOVE meal planning. I could do it all day. It’s exciting to me to get everything structured out to make at least the food part of my life easier.

I’ve also found that my meal planning has gotten better over time. I’ve learned what works for me, what doesn’t, what keeps me full, what doesn’t, etc. I’ve learned how to utilize what I’m buying at the grocery store so I don’t waste food. I don’t let vegetables or meats or really anything expire because I have found ways to overlap the same foods for different purposes. It’s become sort of a game to me and like I said, I simply love it. 🙂

Eat This, Not That

So I went to Sonic last weekend and I was going to order a tea to drink, but when I saw all of their shake flavors I instantly wanted their peanut butter and jelly shake. I mean, how good does that sound?! Trust me, it was heaven in a styrofoam cup.

When I got home from work last night, I was craving another peanut butter and jelly shake. Luckily, before I decided to go get one at Sonic, I looked up the nutritional info. The mini has 700 calories! That’s insane! The mini is soooo small. It was good, but geez, I don’t think it’s worth 700 calories.

I knew I had to come up with an alternative so that is why I came up with an “Eat This, Not That.”

Eat This

My PB&J Chia Seed Pudding-292 Calories

20130719-112701.jpg

Not That

Sonics PB&J Milkshake-700 Calories

20130719-112912.jpg

Of course, it’s nowhere near tasting like ice cream, but the chia seed pudding still has the same delicious flavor of peanut butter and jelly that I was looking for. And although it’s far from actual ice cream, the pudding is seriously delicious!

Peanut Butter And Jelly Chia Seed Pudding

1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 and 1/2 tablespoons almond butter
1 teaspoon pure maple syrup (not pictured)
Stevia (sweeten to taste)
1 and 1/2 tablespoons jelly or jam of choice

20130719-132632.jpg

Mix the almond milk, chia seeds, peanut butter, maple syrup, and stevia together in a small bowl with a lid.

20130719-132744.jpg

20130719-132817.jpg

Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, but preferably overnight. It may need to be stirred again after the first hour of refrigeration. When ready to eat, add jelly and stir. Then eat.

20130719-133103.jpg

20130719-133132.jpg

I used a local wine fruit spread, Toasted, which you can get here. It’s amazing because it’s got a great wine flavor with real chunks of fruit in it!

This pudding is awesome! It’s definitely something I’m going to make again. The flavor possibilities are endless, kind of like the milkshake combinations at Sonic. 🙂

You can easily cut out some calories by using PB2 instead of almond butter. I would have done that, but I’m out of PB2. You can also skip on the maple syrup and just use stevia to sweeten it. So this pudding could easily be dropped to only 180 calories depending on what ingredients you use.

I’m sure you’ll be seeing other chia seed pudding recipes in the future. I’m thinking about making a coconut mango pudding tomorrow. Yum yum!

Hope everyone has a great weekend! I’ve got some fun plans made so I’m excited for the weekend to get here! As always, I’m sure there will be some delicious, blog-able foods eaten over the weekend as well!

My 27 Goals

My BFF recently told me about this idea she read about where on your birthday every year, you make a list of goals you want to accomplish that year. The number of goals you make is based off of how old you are. Even though my birthday is in November, I still thought it was a cool idea and I wanted to participate. Better late than never!

The BFF posted her goals on her blog recently and it inspired me to make my own list (I had been procrastinating). Here’s a link to see her 26 goals.
Megan’s Blog

So here goes MY list of 27 goals.

1. Start a blog- Well that was easy. I can mark this off of my list.

2. Compete in the Color Run 5k- I participated in the Glow Run, which was fun, but the color run looks like even more of a good time. My mom and I are going to do it together in April!

3. Lose 60 Pounds- The last weigh in I did was on Sunday and I weighed in at 335 pounds. That’s a 37 pound weight loss! I’m already over halfway there. Of course I’m going to keep going after 60 pounds, but this is a nice small stepping stone to a larger goal.

4. Go to New York for a weekend with my mom- My mom travels a lot and goes to New Jersey often. She mentioned me possibly flying out to NYC and having a fun weekend together since she’ll be in that area already. I’m excited and hope we get to do this because I’ve always wanted to go to NYC!

5. Go to Church more often- I’ve already accomplished this one as well. I’ve been to a church function, a Sunday night church service, and I’m going to Sunday morning service this Sunday. And I have been doing Bible study every Tuesday for the past 3 Tuesday’s.

6. Try a new restaurant- I always say there are tons of restaurants I wanna try but I usually end up going to the same places. Since I’m not eating out hardly at all, this would be a nice treat to do once.

7. Make new friends- I’ve got some great friends, so I’m not trying to replace any of them. It can never hurt to meet new people though. Did you ever know someone who had too many friends?

8. Clean my apartment- Like a deep clean. If you know me, you know I’m messy. And I’d like to actually have people over, which leads me to my next goal…

9. Have people over to my apartment- I never have anyone over because my apartment is messy. I’m determined to get it clean and keep it that way so that I can have people over and feel comfortable with it.

10. Meet my nephew- My only sibling is having her first baby and I’m soooo excited! He’s due in May and I plan on going to Dallas after he’s born to meet him. He’s going to be the cutest thing ever and I plan to spoil him and be the best aunt I can be!

11. Make another super healthy dessert- I enjoyed the banana chocolate blueberry muffins so much that I’d like to make another healthy dessert. It was just so cool to me that they turned out like a cupcake even though there was no butter, oil, or sugar. Crazy!

12. Get my teeth whitened- Who doesn’t want whiter teeth? I feel like mine could use a little whitening so why not?

13. Make a killer playlist to workout to- Pretty self explanatory. Rhapsody is amazing and I’m sure I can create a great playlist from all their song selections.

14. Go to a meseum- I haven’t been to a museum in forever! I’ve been talking about wanting to go to one so I put it on my list. Now I’ll have to make time for it. 🙂

15. Take my grandma out for a day of fun- I don’t see my grandma often enough so I should make an effort to spend some quality time with her. You never know, it could be her time to go tomorrow, and I don’t want to regret not spending time with her.

16. Read 3 books- I need to start reading again. I just don’t make time for it and I should. Three books isn’t that many, I can do it!

17. Go to Trader Joes- When I go down to Dallas next time, I’m going to visit Trader Joes. I hear it’s pretty great and that they’ve got good prices. I wish they’d bring one to Tulsa.

18. Light my candles more often- I love candles and I buy them pretty often, but I don’t light them that often and I don’t know why. They smell so great.

19. Watch the sun set- This one is simple and it happens every single day but I never pay attention to it.

20. Exercise with my sister- I can already imagine what this will look like. I’ll be a biggest loser contestant and she’ll be Jillian. Haha. I remember back in the day my sister and I used to do Tae Bo together and then go eat spam sandwiches. It was a lot of fun! Except this time, no spam.

21. Change the lightbulbs in my apartment- Some of them have gone out and I still haven’t changed them out. It’s getting darker in my apartment…haha.

22. Buy a lunch box- I need something besides a Reasors sack to bring my lunch in. I also need a reusable ice pack so I can keep it cold.

23. Paint something at Pinot’s Palette- I’ve been dying to go and paint a picture there! I hope to do this one soon with my momma.

24. Go to the farmers market on Saturday morning- Now that I’m eating more vegetables, it’d be nice to get some local fresh veggies from the farmers market.

25. Give up diet pop for a week- This one might be hard. I’m hoping that if I can give it up for a week, then I can try to cut it out completely. We shall see!

26. Cook together with my dad- This one is easy because I do it often, but it’s something I enjoy and I’d love to keep it up. We make a lot of healthy stir-frys in the wok I got him for Christmas. It’s become part of our Sunday ritual and I cherish that father daughter time together.

27. Make homemade doggy treats for my dog- I don’t buy treats often for my dog. She’s getting older and I think her stomach doesn’t tolerate them as well as it used to. I’ve heard that pumpkin is good to soothe a dogs stomach so I’d love to make her a treat that’s good for her.

Well, that’s my list of 27 goals I’d like to accomplish before November 13th 2013. I’ll update you on my progress as I complete them. I really like this idea of making goals. It gives you something to look forward to doing and it gives you a sense of accomplishment after you complete a goal. You should try it too!