Archive | May, 2010

Flashback Friday: Kombucha Edition

28 May

The Gauntlet

The first time I tried kombucha was on a spur-of-the-moment trip to Lexington over New Year’s, and E captured it on video. I was a little surprised (and a little awkward) – enjoy!

Why The Heck Not? Wednesday

26 May

Why the heck not….

…have fun with fashion?


….judge a wine by its bottle?


…say yes to chocolate & nut butter…

put yourself out there?

Wk 1 Check-in, 26 to 27

24 May

Hey everyone!

Hope y’all had a rocking weekend – mine was certainly busy! Between family events, working in the yard and my store having a 40% off sale, it certainly flew by. Is it just me, or is the year flying by ridiculously fast?!? I wish there was a way to make it slow on down.

One week ago, I put myself on the 26 to 27 challenge, and it’s time for the first check-in. This week’s highlight was seeing my father and stepmother for the first time since October, which was around 25 lbs. ago. She gave me the best compliment ever, and told me that I looked like I did when I was a little girl, pointy chin and all. I tell ya, it warmed my heart! I weighed in yesterday – I went to take a picture of the scale, and it never occurred to me that the camera would add on weight…duh! Guess you’ll just have to take my word for it. I’m not one to put my weight out there, but for the challenge’s sake, why not?

Beginning challenge weight: 220.9 lbs.

Current weight: 218.7 lbs.

Total lost: 2.2 lbs.

I’m going to be honest, I was not expecting that at all! Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled; I thought I’d be stuck in the 220’s forever. I ate, for the most part, in a way that honoured my body without sacrificing enjoyment, which I’m really happy about. As always, you can check out what I eat on my SparkPeople food tracker. I don’t know how you feel about me posting meals and calorie counts every day; it’s great for accountability, but I really don’t think it’s all that interesting. Agree or disagree?  Either way, here’s a sampling of (most of) what I’ve eaten this week:
Chicken, Black Bean & Rice Burrito

I’m not perfect, and this is definitely proof of that.

  1. Hydrate! The goal was to drink at least 2L of water a day, and I did okay with this one. Most days was between 7 and 8 glasses, with a couple of days at 10. Hot decaffeinated tea has been a big help, as is the water bottle I keep at work, but this is still a huge challenge.
  2. Cut the crap I feel like I did pretty good on this one – I made the best choices possible in most situations, and really thought through what I was eating and why.
  3. Take some Zzzzzz I’m calling this one a big ol’ fail – I think I made it to bed at or before midnight once all week! I woke up at a decent hour most mornings, with one being 9:30 am and one being at 10:30 am. Better, but nowhere near good.
  4. Make meals matter NEED to work on this one more – I haven’t had set or regular meal times all week, and it’s messing up my sleep schedule.
  5. Caffeine-a-no-go Caffeine’s been almost completely cut out; I’ve had half-caff coffee one morning, and some diet orange soda another, but the rest of the week has been caffeine-free.
  6. Shake it! Another success – went to the Y twice this week, worked out once at the hotel while on mini-vacay, and did some arm-busting yard work this aft.
  7. Smell the roses I had a ton of fun this week! We saw David Copperfield and Chicago in concert, saw The Losers, walked, talked and planned some projects we’d like to start on the house. My biggest advancement, though, was to go with the flow. It’s hard to be a planner when you’re trying to be the most accommodating, and with my dad and stepmom in town, I feel like I gave up a lot of control to be able to allow them to have the best trip possible. I’ll admit, it wasn’t too bad, and it did make it much easier to enjoy a short but sweet visit with the ‘rents.

All in all, not too shabby. This week I’m pushing for major hydration, regular meal- and bed-times, and four days in the gym (I’m hoping the pool will be open!). I feel stronger than I did last week, and I think it has to do with making a plan and sticking with it. Despite issues with school and scheduling, I’ve stayed fairly focused, and I’m starting to see the connections in work and play. I need to stay focused and breathe, and everything else will follow in line.  Plus, the more relaxed I am, the more gets done, which translates to more time I get to spend like this:

Have a great week!

Aba, Aba!

19 May

The internet at the hotel is slooooow like molasses! Don’t they know I’ve got some living to do??? I don’t know that reading what I eat every day or the nutritionals is interesting to any of you, but so far, it’s keeping me a little more accountable. Plus, at the end of the challenge, it’ll be a little easier to point out success (or not). The gym didn’t happen yesterday; I had a rough night, and headed out to sleep on the couch around 3:30 in the morning. E managed to wake me up around 6:30, but after heading upstairs and getting changed, there was some major cramping going on. Switched back to PJs, headed back to bed, and slept for another 4 hours. Once I woke up, I felt remarkably better. Not great, but better. Breakfast was had immediately; Kashi GoLean, Kix and nonfat milk – 258 calories/52g carbs/2g fat/19g protein.

Lunch was around 1:30 – leftover lamb jalfrezi and basmati rice on a whole grain tortilla and vanilla yogurt. I love cold leftovers, so this was perfect, and the lamb got nice and spicy overnight. The yogurt is from Kroger, and while it’s not organic or vegetarian, I appreciate that it’s HFCS-free, which can be hard to find. It’s really low in carbs and sugar, and has 12g of protein – the best part? At 3 for $1, it’s really cheap. Plus, it tastes good! It definitely doesn’t replace the Greek stuff, but it’s in the rotation. 475 calories/44g of carbs/16g of fat/44g of protein.

On the way to pick up my dad and stepmom, E and I munched on mini peppers and carrots – I had 3 carrots and 2 1/2 peppers, for 108 calories/26g carbs/1g fat/2g protein.

We weren’t sure where to take Dad and Caryl, so we went to Joe Fazio’s, a family favourite – who doesn’t like Italian? True story: Ev’s grandpa and Joe were really good friends as kids, and landed in jail when they were 7 for stealing bananas from a vendor’s stand. Every time we go to the restaurant, it reminds me of Grandpa and I get a huge smile on my face!

I had a chunk of canteloupe, a cracker and a dab of housemade pimento cheese spread from the starter plate, a garden salad with no croutons and 1/2 a tablespoon of parmesan peppercorn dressing, a piece of their famous garlic bread, a fillet of broiled grouper with lemon and half of a baked potato with 4 oz. of sangria for dinner. I also had 2 cups of hot tea and a bite of E’s tiramisu for dessert. Yum! 840 calories/85g carbs/27g fat/55g protein.

My parents brought with them a taste of home, per my mother’s recommendation – BAGELS! Montreal’s famous for them, and they’re chewy and delicious, so thanks Mom! My Bubby Selma also slipped in a sweet treat, a box of Lowney’s chocolate maraschino cherries and a handwritten note. They taste kind of like cough syrup, but in a good grandma-kind of way.

One broke in transit, but we each had one as a sweet treat, and it was wonderful. 60 calories/13g carbs/1g fat/0g protein.

It was a looooong day, and we crawled into be way past bedtime. I’m starting to notice that no matter how much I eat during the day, dinner is pretty much always over 500 calories. I get hungrier at night than I am in the day, so I need to start planning accordingly. Daily total? 1742 calories/220g carbs/47g fat/120g protein, or 49.5%/23.5%/27%.

Gotta go hop in the shower; meeting up with the rents at their hotel in a few – the plan for today is some sightseeing, shopping and Chicago tonight. Happy Wednesday!

26 to 27, Day 2

18 May

I’m being a much better reader than I am a writer lately – there’s a little too much good stuff being published on my Google Reader that I get sucked in when I probably should be writing! Day 2 was busy, busy – appointments, volunteering and dinner out with friends. At least I got some gym time in, right?

The day started with a workout around 8:30, which was much later than planned. Our sleep schedule is still so off track, but it’s getting better every day (I think?). The original plan included swimming and strength training, but I ended up just doing cardio instead. Instead of water, E and I mixed up some watermelon Xtend, a supplement from Scivation, in blender bottles. Xtend has no sugar, carbs or calories according to FDA guidelines, and is supposed to double your fat loss, muscle gain and strength when compared to whey protein, while helping with recovery. It uses branch chain amino acids, among other ingredients, and is pretty tasty, although a little bitter. We bought our first jug in Montreal back in February and liked it so much we bought two more! I haven’t seen much of a result yet, but we haven’t used it consistently, so only time will tell.

After a little over half an hour of incline intervals on the treadmill, I tried out the Stairmaster for the first time, and set out to do ten minutes. I made it to 13, sweat up a storm and called it quits. Total workout was 45 minutes, with an estimated 395 calories burned.

I didn’t eat anything before heading to the gym, and only had enough time once I got home to shower and head out to the doctor’s. I grabbed a yogurt and organic toaster pastry around 10:45 – poor planning on my part. It was good, but not very filling. Breakfast came out to 290 calories, 44g of carbs, 6g of fat and 15g of protein.

Between a frustrating meeting at school and working at the Kitchen, we stopped for a quick lunch at Jewel City, a local favourite. I had a huge garden salad with lemon juice, a tuna kebob, a hush puppy and some green beans, and it was amazing as always! Lunch came out to 497 calories, 47g of carbs, 12g of fat and 55g of protein.

The afternoon at the Kitchen was a blast today; we did really simple chicken fajitas with a few kids from a local middle school, a potato-leek soup. I grabbed some hot water for tea and Peeled Snacks apricots from Starbucks across the street. I was craving a chocolate cookie, but the fruit was a better choice; I love that they have better grab and go options now, but the apricots were just okay, and were much drier than I prefer. Add in about 1/4 cup of chicken and veg, and this snack came in 149 calories, 30g of carbohydrates, 1g of fat and 8g of protein.

Ev and I met up with some friends for Indian, and by the time we got there, we were both starving! I definitely ate more than I planned, but all in all, it wasn’t too bad, I suppose. The table shared some vegetarian appetizers, and I had some pappadum with mint chutney, 1/2 a samosa and 2 small pakora, followed by 1/2 a roti, 1/2 an order of lamb jalfrezi, 1/4 cup of basmati rice, a little bit of E’s veggie masala and a bite of his carrot halwa, with a tootsie roll for dessert. The jalfrezi is a dry curry and was the best part, with tons of vegetables like asparagus, broccoli and carrots. Dinner’s total was 821 calories, 99g of carbs, 32g of fat and 33g of protein.

Overall, the day wasn’t too bad; I had 10 glasses of water, and felt pretty good throughout, but after dinner I was pretty sluggish. I’m not too surprised since it was so carb and fat heavy, and it pushed me to the top of my calorie range. Totals? 1758 calories, 220g of carbs, 52g of fat and 113g of protein, for a ratio of 48.9/25.9/25.2