Month: June 2010

Whipped Oats

So, back to normal, for now. ūüėČ

I woke up early this morning to go for a run since I hadn’t worked out since Saturday. To be honest, I was kind of dreading the run before I went (mostly because I was awake before 7am, but partly because I hadn’t run in a week and I thought it was going to be hard!). It ended up turning out really well! Because of my dead computer, I couldn’t plug in my Garmin for the breakdown of stats, but I found this cool running calculator that can help you calculate pace or speed to figure it out.

Duration: 38:59

Distance: 4.00 mph

Avg. Speed: 6.16mph

Avg. Pace: 9:44 min/mi

Overall, a great run! The weather was perfect, a lot cooler than it has been for the last week or more. I think it was around 70 degrees and a little breezy. Amazing.

After I got back from my run, I was HUNGRY. Yesterday I saw this technique for Blended Grains, where you make your oatmeal like normal (or any other grain you want) then you blend it up. You can use a blender, food processor, or handmixer, and it basically gets really fluffy and turns into whipped oatmeal. I was thinking about it during my run, so figured why not give it a shot! It’s kind of hard to¬†gauge¬†the consistency of it from this picture, but it was really creamy and delicious.

I topped it off with some cherry craisins

And it was goooooood. For this bowl, I used:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats (2 pts)
  • 1 cup water (0 pts)
  • 2 tbsp egg whites (0 pts)
  • ~2 tbsp cherry craisins (1 pt)

I added the egg whites to give it a little protein and I couldn’t even taste that they were in there. I will definitely be blending up my oats or some other grains again – I loved the texture of these! I had a pretty huge Pink Lady Apple (1 pt) for a mid-morning snack.

Lunch was half successful, half not-so-much. Bad news first. I had some arugula in my CSA from last week that I wanted to use up (since I get a new box tomorrow) but it has so many tiny holes in it! I looked it up and found out that the holes are from flea beetles and I guess it’s common for them to eat arugula that is organic. That said, I rinsed the arugula really really well, but it was grossing me out as I was eating it.

I ended up picking the feta and blueberries off the salad and throwing most of the arugula out. ūüôĀ

The successful part of lunch was pizza! I picked up these flatbreads at Trader Joe’s:

I heated up some spinach in the microwave and dried it off really well with a paper towel. I added some pizza sauce, the spinach, and some reduced fat mozzarella cheese to the flatbread and threw it in the toaster oven. The end result was this:

So good!! The point breakdown for lunch is:

  • Arugula (0 pts)
  • RF Feta (1 pt)
  • 1 cup blueberries (1 pt)
  • Flatbread (3 pts)
  • Pizza Sauce (0 pts)
  • Spinach (0 pts)
  • RF Mozzarella (1 pt)

So 6 total, which is not bad at all.

What are some of your favorite things to healthify? I love making pizza at home because it’s one of my favorites! Regular pizza can have so much fat/calories/points (which I still eat a bit too much), but making a healthy version at home is pretty easy and delicious. I also like to make my own fries at home, another one of my favorite unhealthy things that can actually be really good for you if you make it in your own kitchen.

Technical Difficulties

Hiya! Sorry I disappeared yet again, but I’m having some major technological difficulties. When I was in Oklahoma City (first week in June) my laptop charger broke and then I bought a new one a few weeks ago but it doesn’t work unless I put it at a really strange angle and lay my computer on the floor pushing it in further (I’m pretty sure it’s not an ideal fit). That said, I haven’t had a computer at home, and then we went to visit the boyfriend’s mom on Sunday/Monday (used comp time from OKC to take the day off!) so I got back to the office yesterday. But then, I went to update you all on what was going on in my life and I realized that I left the cord at home to connect my camera to my computer!

Instead of boring you with the details of my every day for the last 5 days, I’ll just fill you in on a few highlights.

Workouts

1.) African Dance Class – SO fun! It was kind of ridiculous because the instructor could ways in move my body wouldn’t even dream of, but I literally had a smile on my face for the whole class. Some of the women in it (there was one guy) were really amazing dancers, and some, like me, haven’t yet found their rhythm (will I ever?), so there was a mix of different levels. I definitely broke a sweat and danced a lot for almost an hour and a half! If I was a better dancer I’d probably make it a semi-regular thing because it was fun, but I’m not sure how much I’ll actually go back.

2.) Bikram – I had an awesome Bikram class on Saturday! I hadn’t been in a few days and I was just really feeling it. For the first time ever, I was able to get my toes behind my calf in Eagle Pose!! It was such an exciting moment when I actually saw my toes poking through! Sometimes when I go I have ¬†really good class and it just “clicks” but sometimes I struggle my way through. Saturday’s class was awesome.

Eats

I had breakfast with one of my best friends on Saturday morning who was visiting from NYC. I’m so sad I didn’t get a picture with her, but I did take a picture of my delicious breakfast.

Eggs Florentine, which is basically Eggs Benedict, but with spinach instead of ham. Eggs Benedict was always one of my all time favorites before I got healthy, but I figured out how to enjoy it but still stay on track – just order it without the hollandaise! Because the eggs and poached and the yolks runny, when they break and ooze all over your plate, it makes the perfect sauce, so you don’t even miss it!

I also had an awesome breakfast bowl yesterday, nothing special, just delicious and filling.

1 cup blueberries (1 pt), 3/4 cup puffins (1 pt), 1/4 cup rolled oats (1 pt), 1/2 cup Trader Joe’s FF cottage cheese (1 pt). It was a great meal to get back on track after the night away on Sunday because I always have trouble staying on track when traveling, which I don’t think makes me unique. I wasn’t THAT bad, I just wasn’t measuring or counting points, but we did go to Olive Garden for dinner Sunday night. I looked up the menu beforehand to figure out what I should get, and I found out that the Mussels di Napioli only have 180 calories and 8 grams of fat (4 pts), so I ordered that (which is an app) plus the Minestrone Soup (1 pt), and had 2 breadsticks (6 pts) and some salad (1 pt) because I got it without the dressing. Monday we ate breakfast at the hotel buffet and I ate too much even though it was pretty gross. We ended up going to Mexican on the way home for dinner and I ordered a light entree but ate way too many chips and salsa, story of my life at a Mexican restaurant.

The weekend itself, splurging aside, was realllllly fun. Saturday I had that delicious breakfast with my friend, spent a few hours at the pool, and then went to Bikram in late afternoon. It felt so good to just relax and actually enjoy my Saturday rather than traveling. Sunday we left pretty early to get my oil changed and then get on the road, arriving at Wil’s mom’s house around 2. We brought some food over to throw together sandwiches for lunch and just sat around chatting. It was very low-key, but very nice to relax and just sit around. Olive Garden was that night, and then we met one of Wil’s childhood friends for a few drinks at a bar near our hotel. I stuck to vodka sodas (had 2) and then got to bed pretty early. Monday we had breakfast at the hotel and then went back over his mom’s house for a few hours before hitting the road to get back to DC. Yesterday was INSANE at work since I had been out on Monday, so the day flew by. Today I feel like I’m finally getting back into the swing of things.

I’ll be back in a bit to show you today’s eats and get back to my regular program!

I know it’s long gone, but what was the highlight of YOUR weekend? Or, anything fabulous to look forward to for the 4th?

hi!

I’m alive just been having technology troubles and was traveling yet again this weekend. I promise to come back tomorrow to fill you in!

TGIF

Heya! Last night’s festivities turned out to be quite a bit of fun, but this morning was less so. I had a few of these:

Earl Grey Julip, which was basically a glass of bourbon on the rocks. yum. I also had two steamed veggie buns and a delicious salad to eat.

(Veggie buns are top right of the salad). The salad had shrimp, a citrus vinaigrette, and rice noodles on it. SO good.

The one win for the night was that I always tend to crave pizza after a night out, and last night was no different. BUT, instead of calling Domino’s like I usually do, I decided to make my own low-cal version of a pizza, with RF shredded cheddar on a flatout wrap with garlic. No picture but it was a victory none the less.

Today I made another Breakfast Parfait but reworked it a bit so it was only 3 points!

This had:

  • 1 cup of blueberries, microwaved for 90 seconds and then refridgerated overnight (1 pt)
  • 1/2 cup fiber one (0 pts)
  • 1/4 cup raw rolled oats (1 pt)
  • 1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt (1 pt)

It was a little smaller than the one earlier in the week since I used half the yogurt, but it still kept me full for a few hours and tasted delicious. Plus, only 3 points for a breakfast parfait? Sign me up!

Lunch today was also really delicious and colorful.

This had:

  • 1 flatout wrap (1 pt)
  • 2 cups arugula (0 pts)
  • 2 fresh apricots, sliced (1 pt)
  • 2 tbsp goat cheese (2 pts)
  • 2 tbsp cherry craisins (1 pt)

On the side I had 2 sliced up baby cucumbers (0 pts)

And then a pink lady apple for dessert (1 pt).

This wrap was AWESOME. The arugula was spicy and peppery, so worked perfectly against the sweet craisins and apricots. Plus, the goat cheese was crumbled throughout and was creamy and rounded out the wrap perfectly. I got the apricots from my farm share yesterday and honestly cannot remember the last time I had fresh apricots! Dried, yes, but fresh? They are so delicious, sweet and juicy. ¬†My boyfriend put a fresh goat cheese, apricot, and asparagus pizza on the menu at the restaurant, so I’m thinking about using the rest of them to make an at home version of that. Mmmm.

What are you plans for this evening? I am looking forward to tonight because I’m trying out an African Dance class with a few friends for the first time! It’s an hour and 15 minutes and I was told “Prepare to sweat!” so I think it’ll be a good workout, but something new and fun. I rarely ever do classes since I don’t belong to a gym, so doing this with my girlfriends will be a treat!

Back At It

Whew. I am SO glad that is over with! I have been putting off going back to weigh in at Weight Watchers because I knew I was up a few pounds and haven’t really been counting points in ages. But today, I sucked it up and went and I am so happy I did. I’m not thrilled with the weight itself, because I gained 3 pounds since the last time I was there, I’m just happy that I went and can start fresh. So, officially now, I have 9 pounds to lose to get to my goal weight, which is very do-able if I just make a few tweaks to my diet and keep up with exercising frequently.

The way that I generally do WW which has worked for me in the past, is I pick one “free” night where I don’t really count points, and then just assume I’ve used all of my weekly points. Then I try to stay at my daily target every other day or else use Activity Points that I’ve earned if I need extra points. My free night is actually going to be tonight since I have the happy hour, and that should give me plenty of time to make up for any set back I have tonight so that I have a good weigh in next Thursday.

So, here is my plan:

  1. Back to Weekly Meetings – Every Thursday at 12pm because it’s over lunch and works well with my schedule. There is a Wednesday 12pm meeting as well in case I have a conflict on Thursdays.
  2. Keep up with the Water – Though WW calls for 6 cups a day, my body is happier when I have 8+ cups a day. This was one of my June Goals which helped me get back into drinking a lot of water, so the plan is to just keep up with my water consumption.
  3. Exercise Consistently – My goal is to work out 4-5x a week, with 1-2 days of running, 1-2 days of Bikram, biking, and some strength training.
  4. Count WW Points – Another one of my June Goals which I have been relatively consistent about, but I plan to try to count as much as possible until I am at my goal weight. This will be a little bit of a challenge because when I first started WW and was good about counting points, I was eating a LOT of processed foods, which are easier to count points of because the nutritional info is right on the package. Now that I largely eat whole and unprocessed foods, it will be a bit more of a challenge to count points, but I will try my best and estimate when necessary.
  5. Keep a Mostly Whole Foods Diet – Going along with the last bullet, I don’t want to revert back to a lot of processed foods like I was eating when I first started WW, so I want to keep eating a lot of the same things, just a little less of it, and treats in moderation.

So that’s it! Seems very simple and straight forward, but as everyone who has ever struggled with their weight knows, its a lot easier to say than to do. Please stay tuned and check in with me and make sure I’m sticking with it so that I can get to my goal weight and look and feel my best for my best friend’s wedding! ¬†On the bridesmaid dress note, I ordered a size 10 which is a bit too snug, and my friend Jess got a 12 which is a bit too big, so we’re actually going to do a test tomorrow and possibly switch dresses. While I still want to fit in the 10 by the wedding, I do not think I need the pressure of the dress possibly NOT fitting, so I’m hoping the switch works out.

Onwards!

Lunch today was a treat to myself for going back to WW. I went to the Juice Joint, my favorite quick spot for a healthy lunch in DC. I got a small side salad to go (no dressing)

Which had organic greens, tomatoes, carrots, and cucumbers (0 pts).

I also got my favorite sandwich from there, the Fresh Mozzarella & Roasted Veggie Sandwich. It has roasted zucchini, squash, red peppers, sprouts, tomato, basil, and fresh mozzarella on multigrain bread. It comes with balsamic vinaigrette dressing, too, but in an effort to be a little light, I asked for it without the dressing. Check out how packed with deliciousness this sandwich is!

And you know what? I didn’t even miss the balsamic! I probably will order this sandwich just like this going forward, even after I’m at goal. The veggies and cheese add so much flavor that you don’t even need it. I’m counting this sandwich as 7 points (just a guess), by breaking down the bread as 4 points and the mozz as 3. I’m guessing that’s a little high because there wasn’t much mozz and the bread was pretty thin, but the veggies may have been cooked in a little EVOO so 7 sounds safe. That means 11 total for today with breakfast, which is not bad at all.

Have you struggled with your weight before? What are the key changes you made to your diet/exercise routine that have helped you along the way? For me, drinking a lot of water, eating tons of fruits and veggies, and exercising at all (because I didn’t used to!) were the biggest changes that helped me to lose most of my weight.

Two Showers

And I thought yesterday was hot… Nothing compared to today so far. I woke up early to go for a run since I have a happy hour after work, and I thought I’d be OK since it was 7am… not so.

Last night after work I went over my friend Rachel’s new apartment who I haven’t seen in months! We hung out by the pool for a little bit but I was getting eaten alive by bugs, so we went inside instead to make dinner. I just watched but this dinner was DELICIOUS and seemed pretty easy!

In a food processor, she put:

– sun dried tomatoes

– olive oil

– breadcrumbs

And then added some parsley to the mix, and coated two tilapia filets. She just pan fried it and made some green beans to go on the side.

I don’t know what the proportions of ingredients were for this, but it tasted DELICIOUS. I didn’t think there was any way I could finish the piece of fish since it was pretty huge, but I inhaled it with no problem at all. I’ll definitely be trying to recreate something similar and will share ratios and WW points once I make it myself. Yum.

So this morning as I mentioned above, I woke up before 7 to go out for a run. I didn’t even check the weather but did drink a huge glass of water before I went. I decided to do 4 miles today since I woke up a little earlier, and from the second I stepped outside I could not believe how hot it already was! I made it through the first 2 miles no problem and then turned around to head back, and I was just having the hardest time. I kept saying “You can do this” over and over in my head, and then I made it to the 3.1 mile mark, but I knew if I started walking it would just take me longer to get home. I saw 3.2 on my Garmin and kept going, then 3.5, then 3.65 and I just could not run anymore. I stopped to walk, for the first time ever on a run! I literally had no choice – – I was parched, hot, sweaty, and just miserable. You gotta listen to your body sometimes when it says no, so I did and walked the last .5 miles home.

Here were the stats:

Distance: 4.14 miles

Duration: 47:10

Avg. Pace: 5.3mph

Avg. Speed 11:23mph

Calories: 497

It’s crazy how that last .5 miles brought down my pace and speed SO much. The first 3 miles were 6.1 mph 6.1mph and 5.9 mph, and then the 4th mile was 5.0 mph. I was so happy I ran since I didn’t work out yesterday and have plans after work, but man that was rough.

One of the things I do whenever I’m working out is think about what I want to eat afterwards to help me get through. This morning I was trying to think of what to have for breakfast, and for some reason my mind was saying Blueberries with Milk, eaten like cereal. I’m not sure why but it is just what I was craving. For good measure, I added 1/2 cup fiber one cereal, and then 1 cup each of light soy milk and blueberries to the mix.

The picture makes it look like there’s more cereal than blueberries, but the blueberries cover the whole bottom of the bowl. This bowl was only 2 points total and while a little strange, totally hit the spot.

After I ate and showered, I decided to run and pick up my farm share for this week. It was more substantial than the last few weeks and is a good mix of veggies and fruit.

I got:

  • Kale
  • Arugula
  • Green Onions
  • Basil Plant
  • Apricots
  • Yellow Plums (babies!)

I am pretty excited to try the plums because I’ve never had them before – – and I haven’t had a fresh apricot in AGES so I can’t wait to dive into those either. I now have 3 herbs that I’ve been watering but NEED to plant from the last few weeks at the CSA – cilantro, chives, and now basil.

Walking home from the CSA, I started profusely sweating. Like sweat dripping down my face and back so I had to stop to wipe myself off a few times. No joke. I ended up making it back to my apartment in much worse shape than I had left, so I had to take a second shower! It is that hot out… crazy.

After I got to my desk I was still a bit hungry, so I had some watermelon (fresh from a NJ farm stand) with a few more blueberries. (2 more points)

So good and refreshing.

My plan is to go back to Weight Watchers today over lunch….. EEK. I haven’t been since April 1st, but I need to suck it up and cross of this June goal while it’s still June! Plus, I’m still paying for it, so it’s time.

After I get back from weighing in and eating lunch, I’ll post my game plan for getting to my goal weight/fitting in my bridesmaid dress by August 7th.. stay tuned!

Holy Veggies

I just got my entire day’s worth of fruit and veggies in 20 minutes. Let me show you.

First, I had a Mexican Style Salad.

It had:

  • Red Leaf Lettuce, no slug (0 pts)
  • Fresh cilantro (0 pts)
  • New Jersey Corn (1 pt)
  • 1/2 cup canned black beans (1 pt)
  • 1 oz 75% RF Cabot Cheddar (1 pt)
  • Salsa (0 pts)
  • 1/2 serving baked tostitos (1 pt)

On the side, I steamed some broccoli (0 pts)

And then had 2 baby cucumbers sliced, and 1 cup of cherries.

Everything that I ate (besides the canned black beans, cheese, salsa, and baked tortilla chips) was organic and from a local farm. It was so filling and satisfying, and the whole huge meal was only 5 points. As you can probably venture to guess, I’m trying to use up all the fruits and veggies I have because I have a new farm share box coming tomorrow! Normally I won’t have a problem using up everything but because I’ve been traveling on the weekends, its been tough trying to use it all.

What are some of your favorite ways to add extra flavor to meals, without adding too many calories? Adding fresh herbs to a salad is one of my favorite ways to add tons of flavor with minimal calories. I also love to use garlic and vinegar in cooking, and salsa for salad dressings, dip, or as a topping on baked potato.

New Races!

Good morning and happy hottest¬†Wednesday¬†of the year so far! It’s supposed to get up to 99¬ļ today… eek. I woke up today feeling GOOD though¬†definitely¬†didn’t wake up before my alarm with enough time to go out for a run before work… ūüôā

I did have time to throw together a simple but delicious breakfast which I ate outside on my balcony in the sun (before it was TOO hot).

Sometimes simple breakfasts are the best. This bowl had:

  • 1 cup nonfat plain yogurt (2 pts)
  • 1 cup blueberries (1 pts)
  • 1/4 cup raw rolled oats (1 pt)
  • cinnamon (0 pts)

This bowl was packed with protein, antioxidants, fiber, whole grains, and deliciousness. Yum.

In other exciting news, I’ve signed up for 3 races in preparation for my half-marathon in September! I’ve been working out a training plan which I will share once I have it all set in stone, but I’m largely working off the Hal Higdon Novice Half Marathon Training Plan, but changing it around a bit to¬†accommodate¬†dates where I’ll be out of town, and fitting in Bikram yoga and bike riding so that I can still keep my fitness routine well rounded.

The three races are…

July 16th – Run for the Gulf 5k

July 24th – Crystal City Twilighter 5k

August 28th – Blue Crab Bolt 10k

September 19th – Philly Rock N Roll Half Marathon

Yay!

It feels so good to have these races on my calendar because I haven’t had anything since the Love the Run You’re With 5k back in February. Races always keep me on track with my running, plus give me something to look forward to! Plus, the money goes to charity so it’s something I can feel good about spending my money on. All pluses!

Do you run in road races? What do you have coming up that you’re looking forward to, or what race have you run in recently/how was it? If not, why not? Is running not your thing?

Frozen Smoothie

Hello! Today has been a really good day, but far too fast if you ask me. I ended up wandering through the Farmer’s Market by my apartment after work, and before I even got to the market, I spotted this truck:

A frozen yogurt truck! I knew I needed a snack because my stomach was grumbling, so this was an exciting discovery. I just ended up getting plain tart fro yo, and I actually ordered it in a cone but they were out and gave it to me in a cup instead.

The cone (with no toppings) was $2, and the small (with 3 toppings) was $5, and I”m cheap. So, plain it was. “Twas delicious though, and perfect for the hot, hot weather today. I made my way through the farmer’s market and am noticing such a change now because great stuff is coming out of the farms! There’s tons of fruit, greens, squash, beets, etc., and way more than there has been earlier this season. I ended up just getting ¬†a little bit because I have the farm share coming on Thursday, but I picked up a few things that I knew wouldn’t be in there.

2 pink lady apples, baby cucumbers, cherries, cilantro, and goat cheese. I got all this stuff $17, the biggest splurge being the goat cheese which was $7, but I sampled some and it is SO good.

After my farmer’s market adventure, I decided to go to Bikram! I already worked out this morning, but it was just a quick run, and I haven’t been to Bikram in over a week, so I decided to just do it. It felt awesome. I’ve said this before, but for some reason, when I take some time off from Bikram, my first class back is always the best. I really enjoyed it and got deep into a lot of the postures, and held a few of them the whole time for the first time, which was very exciting for me.

Before I went to Bikram, I made myself a smoothie with:

  • 1 cup light soy milk (1 pt)
  • 1 large frozen banana (2 pts)
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries (.5 pts)
  • 1/2 cup blueberries (.5 pts)
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla whey protein powder (1 pt)
  • 1 tsp chia seeds (.5 pts)

I poured it into a bowl:

I actually threw it in the freezer for 2.5 hours while I went to Bikram. I’d seen frozen smoothies on a few other blogs and wanted to see what it was all about. Here it is out of the freezer.

I couldn’t resist poking my finger in it immediately when I pulled it out of the freezer… thus the indent in there. Freezing it was such a great idea!! It made it take a lot longer to eat, and it was more slushy like and almost like a bowl of ice cream. It was SO satisfying and the perfect treat for after Bikram.

I am off to catch up on Treme from Sunday night (the New Orleans show on HBO!) Does anyone watch it? Awesome show!

The Flavor Was There, But…

Hiya! Thanks for all your responses on my post from this morning. It looks like most people are morning exercisers, which makes me feel like I should be less lazy and just get up and go! To think about freeing up my evenings is pretty¬†desirable¬†too, and I think it is great to get my day started on the right foot. I can already feel how much more on track I am today than on days where I don’t work out.. an M&M here, starburst here… bite of whatever is in the office kitchen, etc.

So unintentionally I haven’t been to the grocery store in ages. I’ve been traveling for so many weekends and stopping at farmer’s markets here and there and just haven’t made the time to go. It’s made me go out a bit more than normal, but also get a little creative in the kitchen. For lunch today, I decided to make some black bean burgers.

Into the food processor, I threw:

  • 1/2 cup black beans (1 pt)
  • 1 tbsp parmesan cheese (1 pt)
  • 1/2 large carrot
  • 1/4 onion
  • fresh dill

I pulsed that until combined so it looked like this:

And then formed it into patties:

I realized once I started forming them into patties they were a little too wet. I should have added 1/4 cup of panko crumbs, and also rinsed and dried the beans better. I was in a rush though, so I just went with it. The texture of these was sort of like a thick bean spread, so when I heated them up they kind of melted a bit together.¬†The flavor of them, however, was awesome. The fresh dill and parmesan make SUCH a difference – I think that’s the trick to delicious homemade veggie burgers.

I ended up taking a flatout wrap (1 pt) with some greens, and put the heated “burgers” on top and wrapped it up.

Again, the consistency was way off on these, but the flavor was awesome. It tasted great spread in the wrap. On the side, I had some more fresh broccoli (0 pts) from my farm share with some salsa (0 pts) to dip.

I had an apple (1 pt) for “dessert”

I am off to wrap up the day. Be back!

What are you looking forward to tonight?

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