Overnight Oats

CSA Day and Roses!

Good Morning and Happy Thursday! It is sooooo humid outside still, but they are saying rain is on its way which should help some. I cannot wait for this to break so I can go for a run outdoors! I’m happy to report that I am feeling nearly 100% better since I started having those stomach issues/feeling weird on Tuesday night. I think it was largely do the heat and humidity and not drinking enough water, but also maybe partly a minor stomach bug/virus. Whatever the case, I’m feeling better.

Last night I went to the mall after work for a bit to check out the sale at Express. I got a really cute dress and a pair of shoes.. both for $22!! All of their clearance stuff is an additional 30% off.. score! I split a pretzel with Emily from Aunt Anne’s and it was awesome – though 4 points for just half of it! I was glad to have someone to share it with because the whole thing is 8, which is a ton for something that won’t fill you up!

I just made a simple dinner of an egg on toast:

It was one fried egg (2 pts), with 1 oz reduced fat mozzarella (1 pt) and 1 tsp garlic gold (0 pts) on 1 slice of wheat toast (1 pt). I also had a mini bar from Weight Watchers which is actually awesome:

It has pretzels, chocolate, caramel, and peanuts (plus a ton of other ingredients on the not-so-short list) but is also 1 point and a nice little treat.

This morning I got to pick up my CSA and it was full of fruit again! Love love love.

Look how beautiful those apricots are! Plus there were plums, peaches, swiss chard, and green onions. I love it when there’s so much fruit in the box because I feel like I really get my money’s worth… I’m excited to see how the season progresses!

Breakfast was overnight oats and I went back to adding yogurt and soy milk, instead of just soy milk like I have been for a while. It makes a huge difference in the texture – – it gets thicker and creamier with the yogurt in there instead of just the soy milk.

Into the mix:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats (2 pts)
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder (1 pt)
  • 1/2 tbsp chia seeds (.5 pts)
  • 1/2 cup soy milk (.5 pts)
  • 1/4 cup nonfat greek yogurt (.5 pts)
  • 1/2 cup strawberries (.5 pts)

Having a cold breakfast like this is essential on days like today!

When I walking outside to my balcony to check the weather, I walked by my birthday flowers and they looked so pretty I had to take a pic!

Good job, Wil! 🙂 I also got the Sony E-Reader Touch, which is like a Kindle but it’s touch screen. I bought Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food last night and just started reading it on there this morning.. it is SO cool!

Have you read any good books lately that you’d recommend?

CSA!

Good morning and happy almost-Friday! Today is off to a great start because I went to pick up my CSA this morning and it looks great this week. In case you didn’t know, CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and translates to getting a box of fresh, local produce every week. Farms have a certain number of shares (farm shares) that can be purchased by the public, and this allows them to get their cash flow started early and allows them to get to know the people eating their food. As a consumer, there are tons of benefits because you get seasonal fresh produce, packed with nutrients and you know where you food is coming from. Also, you don’t get to pick what you get (like you do at a Farmer’s Market) so it forces you to try new things that you might not otherwise, which always excites me.

I signed up for the CSA a few months ago and have been looking forward to it starting ever since. I was pretty disappointed when the first week was during my time in OKC, and then last week my friend picked it up for me and it didn’t look THAT good. In fact, we haven’t even used most of the produce we got last week, but today was a new day and a new box of veggies! I set out to pick it up at 9am because its right by my house and I wanted to get first pick of the veggies and also not have them sitting in an unairconditioned room all day (which I suspect was part of the problem from last week) so I set out before work to go find the veggies.

There were tons of boxes stacked up in the room, and so I just picked out the two I was getting (one for me, and one for my friend Amber because we’re splitting a full share). One box is a half-share, and two are a full-share, so Amber and I are splitting a full share. Here’s what the box looked like:

And spread out on my counter…

This week my share had:

  • 3 heads of broccoli
  • collard greens (lots)
  • yellow squash
  • red leaf lettuce
  • a baby cilantro plant
  • beets with tops

I am really happy with this week’s share and am excited to start eating it.. tonight! I’ve never had farm fresh broccoli and I love broccoli, so that’s one of the things I’m looking forward to the most.

Breakfast today was true Overnight Oats (as in I actually made them last night for once!) and added craisins overnight. I got the ideal from Nicole because she put raisins in her overnight oats, so I decided to give it a go with craisins, and it tasted SO good! The craisins/raisins soak up a lot of the liquid so they plump up and add a nice flavor/texture to the mix. The bowl was interesting enough on its own that I didn’t even add any toppings and I’m feeling really satisfied.

In the mix:

  • 1/3 cup rolled oats (1.5 pts)
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder (1 pt)
  • 1 tsp chia seeds (.5 pts)
  • 2 tbsp cherry craisins (1 pt)
  • 2/3 cup light soy milk (1 pt)

If you like overnight oats and haven’t ever tried adding raisins or craisins to it, DO IT! It’s so good.

Question: Have you ever done a CSA or is that something you’d be interested in? What was your experience like if you did it, and if not, what would you look forward to the most about it?

June Goals

Wow. How is it already June 1? I can barely believe its 2010, much less halfway into it! Time fliiiies.

So I got my bridesmaid dress for the August wedding I am in yesterday and it doesn’t fit. I still have over 2 months so I know it will be fine, but I think I have been a little too lax with my diet and exercise lately, and have been slipping into maintenance mode even though I need to still be in lose mode. I mentioned this last night, but today is a new month, and the start to a new regime. I am really going to refocus and do my best to get to my goal weight by the August 7th wedding so that I can look and feel my best that day (not to mention stop paying $40 a month!).

In order to be at my goal weight, I need to lose around 10 pounds, 12 based on what the scale said this morning. I’m pretty sure thats partly from just being bloated from eating too much this weekend and not working out, so I’ll check again tomorrow morning and I’m sure it’ll be less. That said, I’ll probably need to lose about 10 more pounds, which I think is totally do-able if I just make a few changes. I want to keep eating a lot of whole foods and the same types of things I was eating before, I just want to eat a little less, and have lighter toppings on oatmeal/yogurt/salads.

I’ve decided that I am going to set some goals for the month of June to help me achieve my broader goal of getting to goal weight. I’m putting them out there so I will stick with them and plan to do a mid-month and end of month check in, and then set new goals for the month of July. Here goes:

1.) Drink more water. I have been majorly slipping in this department and water is so good for me, not to mention sometimes you can think you’re hungry when you’re really just thirsty. 8+ cups a day.

2.) Be consistent with exercise. Goal of working out 5x per week, which includes running at least once a week. Even on rest days, I want to do a little bit of activity like push ups and sit ups in the morning or bed.

3.) Get back to strength training. I need to strength train at least once a week because I’ve basically stopped doing it all together. Strength training is so important to building lean muscle mass so that you burn more calories at rest.

4.) Go back to Weight Watchers Meetings – I’m still paying for it, but haven’t been since April or May… I don’t even know the last time I went to weigh in. I need to just face the official scale and go so that I can get myself back on track (and get the benefits I’m paying for!)

5.) Limit alcohol consumption – I’ve been drinking a lot more than usual lately, which is a lot of empty calories, plus I make such bad decisions when drinking (hello 3am unblogged pizza on Friday night). I have the Bachelorette Party coming up June 12th in Atlantic City, but other than that, I don’t want to do any crazy drinking during the month of June. A drink here or there is fine, but no more getting tipsy frequently/overdoing it.

6.) Count WW Points. Ugh. This is my least favorite one, but it’s what I really need to do. I can’t promise I’ll be religious about it, but I do plan to try to estimate meals and cut back on unnecessary add-ins for meals that make them too pointy. I think it’s good to come back to points when I go into weight-loss mode, but I am happy to know that I can still maintain my weight (as I have since January) without counting points.

OK so now that I put those out there I am feeling better. I CAN do this. I know it.

Breakfast today started off on the right foot with a bowl of cold oats.

Into the mix went:

  • 1/2 cup oats (2 pts)
  • 2/3 cup skim milk (1 pt)
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds (1 pt)
  • Raisin Bran Vitatop (1pt)

This bowl was really satisfying for just 5 points. I think the chia seeds really do make a big difference in fullness, but I didn’t use the protein powder so we’ll see how it holds me over. I have a lot of stuff to do to get ready for my business trip today – so I’ll be back after lunch!

Do you set monthly goals for yourself? What are your goals for June? If you don’t set monthly goals, is there a reason? I don’t normally set monthly goals and partly its because I feel like I already do a lot for my health and fitness, so to set goals on top of what I already do can feel like a little much. that said, when I don’t set goals I find that I can go a bit off track, as has been the case lately. We’ll see how June goes but I’m feeling good about it, and feeling like these goals are going to help me keep my eyes on the prize!

Chi Chi Chi Chia

Everyone remembers that jingle from the Chia Pet commercials, right? I can never get it out of my head any time I see the word Chia.. and recently I’ve seen it a lot in the blogsphere because Chia Seeds are everywhere! I’d never tried them for myself, but I like new things and I’ve heard they are really good for you, so I did a little research.

Here’s what I found. Chia seeds come from the Salvia Hispanica plant, which is a plant that grows in the desert and very liberally in southern Mexico.  Some of the health benefits associated with Chia Seeds are:

  1. Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids
  2. High in fiber
  3. Also a source of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, molybdenum, niacin, and zinc.
  4. Don’t have to be ground for your body to absorb their nutrients (like with flax seeds)
  5. When added to water, it forms a gel-like substance. This means a similar process happens in our stomach, meaning we stay fuller for longer after eating them.
  6. Helps your body stay hydrated because they absorb 10x their weight in water.
  7. Stabilizes your blood sugar because it slows the process of converting carbs into sugars (great for Diabetics)
  8. Have been found to lower blood pressure
  9. Can help with weight loss because they keep you fuller longer so you’ll eat less, and they lower your caloric intake when eaten with meals.

So, with all these benefits, I couldn’t wait to give them a try. You can put them into or on top of pretty much anything, so today I made some overnight oats with chia seeds.

Into the mix went:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1/2 container of Plain 0% Chobani
  • 1/3 cup light soy milk
  • Toppings: Dried strawberries and dried unsweetened coconut flakes

I am sooo full after this bowl! I think I’m going to start using 1/3 cup of oats instead of 1/2 cup because the chia seeds and the protein powder together in this have left me stuffed! Aren’t these dried strawberries so cute?

They have added sugar which I didn’t realize until after I got them but they are sooo tasty, and a little goes a long way. I ordered the dried strawberries, coconut flakes, and chia seeds from NutsOnline. They had really reasonable prices and the delivery was fast – I ordered Friday and it came yesterday. I’d definitely order from them again, but I got huge bags of everything so I shouldn’t need to for a while! 😉

Happy Hump Day!

Snooze!

Bad news. My camera charger isn’t at work, like I was hoping it would be. 🙁 I looked online to see how much a new one would cost and its $50!! $50 for a little piece of plastic! I was just going to buy it if it was $20 or less, but now I’m going to go home after work and do another thorough sweep of the apartment to make sure its nowhere before I dish out $50 for it. But, in all likelihood, pictures will be coming from my Droid in the next few days. Sad.

For some reason, I had a lot of trouble getting up today. I normally wake up pretty easily when my alarm goes off, but today I snoozed three times! I was expecting to wake up a little sore from last night’s bike ride and The Shred, but I’m actually not feeling stiff or sore at all which is good news. Hopefully I can do a true brick workout soon and not lock myself out of my apartment in the process of getting ready for it… 🙂 I realize I haven’t gone on a run in a long time, so tonight might be a good night to do that.

This morning I had a bowl of Overnight Oats. It feels like it’s been a long time since I’ve had them, so I was excited to dive in.

This bowl had:

– 1/2 cup oats

– 1/3 cup organic almond milk

– 1/3 cup nonfat greek yogurt

– 1 small mashed banana

– 1/2 scoop vanilla whey protein powder

– Toppings: Freeze dried pineapple (!!!) and sliced almonds

This bowl of overnight oats was sooooooo good! The freeze dried pineapple was really the star and added such a nice crunch to my breakfast. I picked up the bag of it at Trader Joe’s over the weekend and it’s an awesome topping! The pieces were whole rings but I crushed them a bit before sprinkling them on top of the bowl. Yum!

Happy Hump Day!

Dark Chocolate Dreams

Good Morning! Finally, Friday is here! Today is my 12th day in a row working, so I have been looking forward to this weekend for a loooong time. And now, just this work day stands between me and the weekend. Woohoo.

I picked up a few different kinds of Starbucks tea that I was looking forward to trying and brought this one in for today:

Then, on my metro ride in, I was reading the newest issue of Shape (with Ellen DeGeneres on the cover.. love her!!) when I came across this blurb…

Are you putting your health in hot water?

When you’re in a rush, it’s tempting use hot H20 from the faucet to brew your Earl Grey. But this shortcut can exposure you to contaminants like lead, copper, and rust. “Hot tap water is more likely to leach these compounds from your pipes,” says James M. Symons, the author of Plain Talk About Drinking Water. That may put you at risk for potential problems, such as lead poisoning. For the safest sip, bring cold water to a boil.

I have been known to just turn the tap water up as hot as it would go, let it run for a little bit, and then use that for my tea. I never even thought about the risk involved in it, I just thought it was a smart shortcut for hot tea! Oops. Needless to say, I poured COLD water into the teapot today and heated it up to boiling for the Chai. I’m sipping on it now and it is really good.

Last night I was putting together my breakfast/lunch for today when I noticed my jar of Dark Chocolate Dreams was running pretty low.

While I was bummed to be out of this stuff, I was pretty excited to get to have Overnight Oats in a Jar for today! And not just any kind, Chocolate Dreams Overnight Oats in a Jar….. yum, yum, yum.

My overnight oat mix had:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup light soy milk
  • 1/3 cup nonfat plain greek yogurt
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder

For toppings, I used ground flax, dark chocolate chunks, sliced almonds, and dried cherries.

One of the best things about Oats in a Jar is that the nut butter is spread all around the jar, so you get a little bit with each bite, even the last one. With this in mind, I decided to put some of the toppings at the bottom of the jar, then the oats on top, then the rest of the toppings. It was such a good idea! I think I’m going to do that with my oats from now on… it makes getting to the bottom a little less sad. 🙂

Happy Friday!!

ONO’s are Back!

Morning! Today is so gloomy and rainy in DC.. I hate it! I’m ready for full out springtime with warm weather and sun. I doubt that makes me unique, but still. 😉 I got a really good nights sleep last night so I am feeling pretty refreshed today despite the weather. I feel asleep by 11 and slept until 8 (oops!) so clocked in just over 9 hours.

I realized that yesterday I didn’t have any coffee, tea, or caffeine of any sort, so that might have been why I was dragging towards the end of the day. That said, I’m pretty happy with my current relationship with caffeine. I was a little freaked out a little over a month ago because I accidentally went without coffee for a few days and started getting some killer headaches (see post here) and then tried to ween myself off of coffee for a while. I’m not opposed to drinking coffee by any means, I’d just prefer to be able to have it when I want it or need a pick-me-up, and not depend on it like I was a few months ago. By weening myself down from XL to Mediums over the course of a few weeks, I feel like I’ve finally gotten to the point where I don’t need it, but still like it, and only have it when I want it. It’s a good feeling!

Breakfast this morning was Overnight Oats… I’ve really missed them! Today I added 1/2 a scoop of protein powder to the mix on top of the usual ingredients, so let’s see if it holds me over for longer. I couldn’t really taste the protein powder, so I’ll definitely use it for the for the fullness factor only and not the flavor.

This bowl of Overnight Oats had:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup nonfat greek yogurt
  • Splash of light soy milk
  • 1 small mashed banana
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder
  • Toppings: Dried Cherries and Sliced Almonds

This bowl was soooo good. I just love the texture of these oats.

The dried cherries from the bulk bins at Whole Foods are so delicious. They’re pretty plump for dried fruit but have no added sugars. Dried cherries can be so expensive, but if you buy them in the bulk bins you pay by weight. I got about a cup of them for around $3, which is pretty reasonable if you ask me. 🙂

Back to work I go! Happy Hump Day!

Coffee Free

Morning! It’s a dreary day here in DC and colder than its been in a while. I have a busy day at work so won’t be able to get outside/take a break, so the weather makes that a little better. 🙂

I was talking to Emily this morning about the waffle situation from last night and I think I realized the problem. The box of mix I was using called for mix, oil, and water, but said you could omit the oil for a healthier version. The reason those waffle irons work well without spray is because there is oil in most waffle batters so that helps it to not stick when its done. So, since I didn’t use oil, I should have used spray on the iron… Makes sense but I didn’t even think about that until this morning. It makes me hopeful that my next attempt at waffles can be successful, because I really love them.

Breakfast was overnight oats today and this bowl was the best I’ve had in a while.

The secret? Mashed banana! It really makes overnight oats. This bowl had:

  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1/3 cup nonfat yogurt
  • 1 small mashed banana
  • Toppings: Chopped dates, sliced almonds, fiber one cereal

Mmm! I promise to start having slightly more exciting breakfasts soon. I just love how easy these are to bring to work and throw together the night before when I pack my lunch. I’m out of sliced almonds, so at the very least you should be seeing some new toppings in the next few days.

Also, side note, I am still everyday coffee-free! Last Monday, I sort of accidentally stopped drinking coffee, and didn’t have it all week. I had a coffee on Saturday because I was feeling pretty tired, but other than that, I haven’t had any coffee in a week and a half. I haven’t even had headaches or anything. This is a big change from the last time I accidentally went without coffee and had a slight freak out. (Read about it here)

I was planning on going out for a run after work but now that the weather’s like this, I don’t know. I’m feeling pretty much 100% right now body wise after my race on Sunday, which is awesome. I think the yoga last night really helped and I’m looking forward to doing that same routine again because it was really challenging, in a good way.

Happy Tuesday!!

Feeling Good!

Good morning and Happy Monday! I’m glad to say that I slept like a baby last night and only woke up coughing one time, so I’m feeling better today. Also, I am feeling surprisingly great after yesterday’s run! I was nervous I’d way up really sore and stiff today since I hadn’t run for 8 days before the race, but I’m feeling really good. I am a little tight in my hamstrings and my shoulders (what?!) so I might try to do some yoga later to stretch out and loosen up.

I got my official race time from yesterday, which is 1hour, 41 minutes, 2 seconds. This is a 10min7second pace, which is slower than I usually go but, I’m fine with it. I think I could have gone faster with less people running, not having stopped to use the bathroom and tie my shoe, and if I had slept a bit more, but it is what it is! I’m happy I was able to run 10 miles and finished 1662/2792 women in my age division. I’m thinking about finding a half marathon to run sometime soon while I have the mileage built up. One of my goals for this year is to run one, so I’m on the lookout for one in May or June. I found one May 2nd that I’m toying with the idea of signing up for… I’ll keep you guys posted.

Breakfast today was back to overnight oats, which I haven’t had in a while now! I was out of bananas, so I just made this mix with 1/2 cup rolled oats and a little under 1/2 cup each of plain nonfat yogurt and skim milk.

I topped it with cinnamon, sliced almonds, and fiber one. I also had two sliced up kiwis on the side:

This meal completely held me over until lunch, which is a good thing in my book!

My fridge is full of a lot of random groceries because of leftovers from cooking Friday and the trip to Costco, but none of them really go together. I’m going to try to make it through with minimal grocery trips this week (must get bananas and spinach, though!) so you might be seeing some really random meals thrown together this week. 🙂

Starting with my lunch. The star of it was a sandwich made with a toasted bagel thin, laughing cow cheese, a Morningstar Farms Turk’y Griller, and some of the baby kale from the Farmer’s market.

I also heated the leftover green beans from Friday night:

And had leftover cucumbers (also from Friday night) with salsa:

Pretty random, but the meal as a whole really worked. I really like those Turk’y Grillers, probably the best of any of the meatless burgers I’ve tried. It goes well with the Laughing Cow cheese, and some greens for bulk never hurt anybody. The baby kale is so good because I love that you can eat it raw since its so tender, and its a nice change from spinach or other greens that I have on the regular. Yum!

Back to work for me. Hope your week is off to a good start!

OIAJ Finally!

Good morning! I woke up this morning feeling a little bit better, but am still really congested and have a bit of a cough. Sort of depressing since I rarely get sick, and now, just before my big race, I’ve come down with something. Blah. I did wake up today and do the AM yoga. I can already tell a bit of a difference in my ability with it. I feel like I’m getting a bit more flexible even though I’ve only done it 3x. It’s amazing how quickly your body can adjust. I’m also happy because I woke up this morning and am not even sore from The Shred! That must have everything to do with the yoga, because last week when I tried it, I was so sore I could barely walk for 2-3 days! I’m sure some of it has to do with my body get used to it, but I think my body is also loving the stretching and flexibility I’ve been working on recently, something that was majorly lacking in my exercise routine before this week.

Today, I finally got to have Oats in a Jar for the first time! I’ve been working on this jar of almond butter for what feels like forever, and there was finally just a little left in the jar today. If you’ve never had or heard of oats in a jar, you basically wait until your jar of almond/peanut/cashew butter is almost gone, and then you prepare oats, and pour them into the jar. You’ll never guess what kind of oats I had in there 😉

These overnight oats had:

  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup nonfat plain yogurt
  • 1/3 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 mashed banana
  • Toppings: chopped dates, sliced almonds, and almond butter from the jar

Look at all those toppings:

Verdict? Not surprisingly, I love Oats in a Jar! I wish I didn’t have to wait until the jar was almost empty to eat them out of there because its so nice that the almond butter is all spread throughout the jar. Even though its just a little bit here and there, the flavor goes a long way, and you have some almond butter all the way to the last bite. Yum!

They’re saying thunderstorms today in DC.. I hope this doesn’t rain out my chances of making it to the Farmer’s Market after work!

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