Sunday, October 31, 2010

Hot 100 Update, Week 5

This is a little late, my apologies!

1. Goal 1: Seeing 199 on the scale before 2011. I weighed in Thursday and had lost 2.2 for the week, putting me at 216.6- I think I can definitely achieve this one!

2. Goal 2: Working out 3 times a week. I only made it to the gym twice last week for a little over an hour both times. Close, but could have done better.

3. Goal 3: Trying one new healthy recipe a week. I made chicken enchiladas for the first time, and they were pretty awful! That recipe definitely did not make it into the recipe book! Mr. D manned up and ate most of his though, just to make me feel better I think :)

I'm sorry this is a few days late- we've been so busy all weekend, and when we were home, we were having Internet issues. My birthday is Wednesday, so along with Halloween festivities, we also had a double birthday thing with my family for me and my son's father. It went so much better than I anticipated (the last girlfriend was such a dud!), and we're loving his fiance!

I wish I could say I stayed on track all weekend, but not so much. Halloween candy was no real issue, but the birthday thing today seriously lacked healthy options. I watched my portions with everything I ate, but it was all carbs. We also went to see a friend's band play Saturday night, and bars just do not serve healthy food. I'm happy to say I didn't overeat once, but still worried the damage is going to show up on the scale. After my carb-filled weekend, I feel a little sluggish and gross. I'll be back on track and back at the gym tomorrow though!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

My First Award!


I received my very first award in Blogger land, huge thank you to Trix at Life's Too Short! I feel all official now! Receiving the award requires you share 7 things about yourself. Oh boy.

1. I'm a huge book nerd.. Anita Blake, Sookie Stackhouse, Blackdagger Brotherhood, Twilight.. Yes, I'm one of those crazy vampire book nerds. I DO read other things though, I'm currently reading Catching Fire, book 2 in The Hunger Games series. My birthday is next Wednesday, but my husband already got me the Nook several weeks ago.

2. I love all things penguin. I can't tell you how many stuffed penguins I have because they were all stolen by my son. Lenny is my favorite.

3. I had my son at 17, and did finish high school. I graduated salutatorian when he was almost one. I went on to college, but had to stop 4 classes away from finishing my degree in medical administration due to very ill grandparents moving in with me. I refused to be another statistic.

4. My mother is a crazy bat, and the older I get, the more of her I see in me. Sometimes it scares me (starting the anti-anxiety meds), but sometimes I feel like I understand her a little better. She's still a crazy bat, but I love her.

5. My husband and I met online in an AIM chat room before Match.com made it cool. He was in college in NH, and I was here in Memphis. We spent every break together after talking for a year. Aside from putting up with me like a superhero, he took on a father role to my son and has always treated him like his own. Five years later and we're happily married (most days!). God bless the Internet.

6. ADD/ADHD is everywhere in my family: my dad, brother, grandfather, me, and now my son. You'd think growing up with it would better prepare me for some of the ADHD parenting challenges, but nooo. My son got it from both sides, poor kid, and is the only one with ADHD rather than ADD. His teacher and I are about to go to war, and I'll win. Crazy-bat being my mother means I can only be so patient for so long. Good luck, Ms. Walker. I'll try not to make you cry.

7. I hate being a natural redhead because my eyelashes are all but invisible without mascara.

So now that you have all this new useless knowledge, on to part 2! I'm passing on the award to 15 other blogs that brighten my day:

2. Christina at Never the Skinny Girl.
3. Christina (another one!) at I'm Sick of Being as Big as a House.
5. Angie at Motivated Mama.
7. Tammy at A Newer Tammy.
8. Blubeari at Shrinking Blubeari.
10. Ice Queen at Fat Like Me.
13. Penny at No More Tomorrows.
14. Weight Watcher Girl at Weight Watcher Ramblings.
15. Kimberly at The Woman Inside Me.

These are definitely worth checking out if you're not already a follower!!

I have 115 posts in Reader to catch up on.. Oy! I'll be saving that for tomorrow :)

Breakfast Bruschetta

Skipping breakfast is a huge no-no in diet world regardless of what plan you're following. Bob Harper even says we need to eat within 30 minutes of waking up (I'll find the link later) to really boost our metabolism. This rule sounds pretty easy, right? I think I struggled with this more than anything else when I started back in Spring! I rarely ate breakfast, but if I did, it sure wasn't first thing in the morning. Coffee- that'd my idea of breakfast. Even my son was very anti-breakfast!

But you have to, right? So I started with cereal bars, but got really bored with breakfast. We have a lot of variety in our other 2 meals of the day, why should breakfast be any different? Now, my family rarely has cereal for breakfast (they're kind of spoiled) because I try to make something different every day. So far, it's helped a lot! We all eat breakfast every day now, and actually look forward to it.

So on my way to work, I thought I'd share one of my favorite breakfasts with you:

Breakfast Bruschetta
1 high fiber light English muffin
1/4 cup tomatoes
1/4 fat free mozzarella
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
Garlic to taste

Cut the English muffin in half and divide all the ingredients between each half, leave the cheese off for now. Using a toaster oven or the broiler, toast muffins to cook tomatoes slightly. Remove and add cheese, toast again until melted.

It's 4 points on WW, and you get 2 servings of oil, 1 dairy, and 1/2 a veggie.




- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Hot 100 Update, Week 4

Week 4 is already here, and I'm feeling pretty good about where I stand on my goals!

1. Goal 1: Seeing 199 on the scale before 2011. I weighed in this morning, and only lost 0.2 lbs. I promised BFF I would be happy as long as I didn't gain this week, and I'm trying to be. A little TMI, but my cycle is notorious for bringing anywhere from 2-5 lbs along every month (*&^$*#! birth control). They generally fall right off soon after, but it's still frustrating to see that every few weeks. In comparison, I'm pleased to have lost even just the .2 lbs.

2. Goal 2: Working out 3 times a week. And here's WHY I'm having trouble convincing myself that .2 lost is still great... Since last weigh-in, I've logged about 5 hours in the gym, and that's huge for me! I skipped Monday night but did a little with the dumb bells at home, and tonight because it's rest day. After last week, I'm thrilled with this.

3. Goal 3: Trying one new healthy recipe a week. Lazy lasagna has made it's way into my cookbook this week. It's definitely a keeper, and I still can't believe it was only 5 points (about 250 calories) on WW. I paired it with a baby spinach salad and my own version of garlic toast (I sneak my oil servings in here some days) and it was a much healthier Italian dinner.

Even with PMS rearing it's ugly head, this felt like a pretty successful week! I hope everyone else had a great week too!!

Lazy Lowfat Lasagna

My BFF gave me this recipe last week and I finally made it last night. The boys' verdict: can't tell it's low calorie! I'm being lazy, and just copying the email she sent, and adding what I changed. It serves 9, and was 5 points on Weight Watchers based on the specific ingredients I used. You definitely want to give it a try!

Lazy Lasagna

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground round (I used 96% lean)
  • 1 (26-ounce) jar low-fat spaghetti sauce (Ragu Light Tomato and Basil)
  • 1 (16-ounce) carton fat-free cottage cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (I used reduced fat)
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 (8-ounce) package precooked lasagna noodles (I used 9)
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) preshredded reduced-fat mild cheddar cheese (fat free)
  • Chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

Cook meat in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain well, and return meat to pan. Add sauce; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes. Combine cottage and Parmesan cheeses in a bowl; set aside.

Spread 1/2 cup meat mixture in bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Arrange 3 noodles over meat mixture; top with half of cottage cheese mixture, 1 cup meat mixture, and 1/3 cup cheddar cheese. Repeat layers, ending with noodles. Spread remaining meat mixture over noodles. Cover and bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with 1/3 cup cheddar cheese, and bake 5 more minutes or until cheese melts. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Calories:
275 (20% from fat)
Fat:
6.2g (sat 2.8g,mono 2.1g,poly 0.4g)
Protein:
28.1g
Carbohydrate:
26.1g
Fiber:
1.9g
Cholesterol:
43mg
Iron:
2.8mg
Sodium:
584mg
Calcium:
181mg

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Girl Meets Gym

I learned something new this week:

I. Love. The. Gym.

Who knew? Certainly not me. My parents stocked an extra room in their house with gym equipment when I still lived at home. I had access to a treadmill, bike, a monstrous weight machine thing, dumbbells, etc. but rarely used it. There was always an excuse or a distraction that kept me from making it a priority because it was always there. You know, the famous "tomorrow" excuse. And when I did, someone always interrupted. I don't know if I'm just a cranky wench, but when I'm in "the zone" and someone asks me if I know where the attachment for the vacuum cleaner is... well it's just irritating. Guess what? No one asks you jack at the gym. Everyone just does their own thing, and it's pure awesome sauce.

I'm really excited the gym is working out so well. I admit, I was a little nervous it wouldn't, and then I'd have to listen to Mr. D rant over the registration fees I wasted (and no one wants that, trust me). Aside from all the wonderful health benefits that we're all well aware of-- I get time to myself when no one talks to me! If you're married, or have kids, or more specifically, have kids with ADHD, you know why this is so precious. Having even just half an hour to myself without anyone asking what's for dinner, or where Sonic's head is, or arguing over turning the video games off (is this just my husband??), or ranting about how it's so unfair they have to wash their hair.. it's pure bliss. Sweating out the stress makes it that much better. I feel like I come home recharged and more patient and ready to roll with it than when I left. I'm already wondering if this could replace my anti-anxiety medicine eventually.

On another note.. Mr. D and I were reading up on pre/post workout snacks, and how important it is to eat the right things at the right time to maximize your results. Apparently fruit is a great pre-workout snack, and I think the english muffin with peanut butter (reduced fat for me) for post-workout was my favorite suggestion. Does anyone have a favorite pre/post workout snack they recommend?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

ATC


It's official, I'm a gym member. I found one about 5 minutes from home that is 24 hours, is spotless and has plenty of equipment, and no contracts. We have one here in the apartment complex, but after an incident a few weeks ago, I just don't feel comfortable being there alone.

I have to admit, I was a bit intimidated when I went to sign up. Half the area is taken up by weight machines that I have no idea how to use or what they're for. They look more like torture devices used in the middle ages.. And not a single person there was even the slightest bit overweight. I got my butt on my shoulders for a moment, thinking I didn't belong here with them. Some of them looked like body builders in training. I signed up anyway, but didn't get to use my shiny new card right then because I had to pick Chris up from school.

I went back later after running all my errands, still a little intimidated, but knowing this is exactly where I needed to be. I've lost 31 lbs so far without incorporating a ton of exercise (not a good thing) and it's time to start making this part of my new healthier habits. I hit the elliptical for 20 minutes, it's my favorite machine because it doesn't bother my knee the way the treadmill can, and then the treadmill for another 25. Pleased to say I kept pace with a much more petite woman on the elliptical too. It was tough, but I'm stubborn and wanted to prove something to myself.

Mr. D said he may eventually sign up with me, but isn't ready to yet. He doesn't really need to lose more than 10 lbs or so, but I think it would benefit him just as much as it will me. He said he wants to make sure I actually use my membership before we sign up for another one. One more reason to keep at it!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Hot 100 Update, Week 3

Even though I'm only working 6 hours tomorrow (it's ok, I'd be jealous too), I anticipate being too busy to post an update. So just in case..

1. Goal 1: Seeing 199 on the scale before 2011. I lost 4.5 lbs this week, and I lost a WW point! Seeing that this morning was great motivation, and I really needed it after last week. This puts me at 219- a number I haven't seen on my scale in years. I've lost a total of 31 lbs.
2. Goal 2: working out 3 times a week. I have been so frustrated this week where working out has been concerned. It feels like I'm making excuses, but short of getting up at 4am to squeeze a DVD in, I just could not find an opportunity this week. I think I found a solution though. I may be signing up for my first gym membership tomorrow.

3. Goal 3: Trying one new healthy recipe a week. That one has been fairly easy so far. I made mashed sweet potatoes this week, which I loved but both the boys hated. I also made a dish with farfelle pasta, red/yellow/orange peppers, shrimp, and fat-free mozzarella. Delish, and only 6 points.
Aside from my epic failure with working out this week, I think I did very well! Small successes add up!

Half Full

Between home drama and work drama this week, I really owe my doctor a call. This new medicine has saved so many lives.. I figure she's met her good deeds quota for the remainder of the year. Buspar for everyone!

Instead of harping on all of that though, I'm focusing on the week's highlights:
- I did not go to jail.
- Mr. D took Chris to an ADHD follow-up appointment- and totally owned it.

- Mr. D also made me breakfast this morning without me asking. And it was WW friendly.

- Shiny new scale arrived 2 days early.

- K-cup build-your-own-boxes arrived.

- The BFF told a coworker she was a crazy bitch. Priceless.

- I had my favorite Chinese for lunch on cheat day- and did not leave feeling full.

- Chunky dunks were in the case this week at Muddy's- which means God does not hate BFF.
- Two 6-hour work days. 'Nuff said.

I'm ready, Friday. Bring it.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sabotage

I couldn't wait to post this, until last night.

Friday night was my weekly "cheat night" that I save my extra points for. I'm learning that doesn't mean I have to go crazy and make awful decisions though. I still need to apply everything I've learned so far. We made spaghetti and salad, and of course there was a Muddy's cupcake. Now I know you've never had my mother's spaghetti recipe, so take my word for it... it's pretty much blaspheme to leave any on your plate. In 24 (almost 25!!) years, I can't recall a single time I've had her spaghetti and NOT felt almost uncomfortably full afterwards, which is one reason we don't make it often anymore.

Not this time though! I had a very small serving of it, and still didn't finish it. Because I wasn't that hungry. I didn't even realize what I'd done until my husband pointed it out. I was so proud of myself! I still had a cupcake before we left for the Haunted Corn Maze, and still didn't feel full. I felt like I'd finally overcome an obstacle that I hadn't really realized was there.

But then I got cocky.

Chris has been grounded from all TV, video games, and the computer over fall break from school. You just don't let a child with ADHD get bored. Ever. So I planned out a few things for us to do together to keep him occupied (and hopefully so entertained he didn't even ask about games) including having my mom and brother over for dinner Saturday, and letting Chris help cook for them. He wasn't too interested in helping with chicken spaghetti, but he did want to make a dessert. I, thinking I could handle this after winning the battle with spaghetti, decided we would make a Halloween cake A) because it would take a lot longer and therefore keep him occupied longer, B) we both love all things Halloween, and C) the budding cook in me just wanted to try it AND find something he had so much fun cooking he would love getting in the kitchen again.

All great, innocent reasons, yes? And I was right. It took a lot longer to do, and he had a blast. He already told me he wants to help cook more this weekend. I pretty much let him do the entire cake by himself, only helping with the frosting and applying the decorations. He cracked eggs, mixed, all of it. And our guests thought the cake was just too cute.

And I still didn't overeat, at all. Not during dinner, not with my one small piece of cake. I resisted the urge to even snack on the reese's pieces while making the cake. Our guests left, and I was so proud of myself.

And then Chris' ADHD medicine started wearing off, so he got hungry. He didn't want leftover chicken spaghetti, or watermelon, or apples. And unfortunately, until he puts some more weight back on (he's very underweight for his age) his pediatrician advised we not worry about nutrition for now, just getting as many calories into him as he'll eat. He asked for chicken nuggets, and ate 10. Then he asked for his cake he refused to eat before, and finished it. Then he asked for pizza rolls. I cooked half of a small bag of them, hoping this would fill him up. And it did.. after eating only 3. He'd already had his bath, so we brushed his teeth and I got him tucked in. And those pizza rolls were still there, still hot.

And that's when I caved, and undid all my hard work. I ate every single one of them. Not because I was hungry, and not because I just love pizza rolls, for no reason at all. I binged and I felt so awful afterwards because I'd felt like I'd overcome this, and I think I sabotaged myself. Why? I still haven't figured that part out yet. But it was definitely a reminder that no matter how many good days I have,or how much weight I lose, making good choices may always require effort on my part.

I'm also a compulsive weigher, trying to break that habit, so I did weigh this morning to see how much damage I'd done. And I'd lost 1 lb. My friend's theory is that my body may have needed the excess calories to keep it from holding onto everything (which is what causes plateaus). I'm happy about the loss, but I still need to make better choices in the future.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Hot 100 Update


Not a successful week in the way I was hoping, but even better than last week if you ask me.

1. Goal 1 of seeing 199 on my scale before 2011- I lost nothing this week. I didn't gain though, I think. My scale is mentally challenged, and rather slow in the mornings lately. Yesterday is my usual weigh-in, but I got 3 different numbers (all within a 2 minute span) and all were up from last week's weight. It said I gained 1.5, 1. or .5- so I moved it to today because after the great week I had, I just could not believe it. Normally, I accept when the scale says I've gained because I can look back that week and find a possible cause. The ONLY one I can come up with this week is good old-fashioned stress. Screw you, cortisol.

2. Goal 2- exercising at least 3 times a week. I hit the treadmill for 2.13 miles Sunday, and took my son walking with me a few other nights this week, and used the weights/exercise ball once. (See, I was good!)

3. Goal 3, trying one new healthy recipe a week. I sorta just made one up this week. My husband asked for frittatas, but I've never really made one. So I dumped egg substitute, green peppers, turkey, and fat free mozzarella in a baking dish and stuck it in the oven. Topped it with salsa and voila, breakfast. I also made a salad with baby spinach for the first time in my life. I know, spinach is wonderful for you, but I'm scarred. I don't care what Popeye says, nothing good for you makes a child sick like that! I apparently love fresh spinach though.

Regardless of what the scale says, I'm making HUGE positive changes in my life for the long haul- to quote my boss. She's right. I got tied up in the number this week, and that's never good. I felt so defeated when I saw I'd gained, not taking into account at that moment that I've physically felt better this week. I've had more energy, my mood has been much better (that could be the new medicine as well). I still like to see an accurate number though, just for tracking my weight loss. So, I ordered a new scale that should be here next Friday. I may not have another official weigh-in until it's here.

One of the best motivating factors this week was shopping with my son. We ran by Kroger last night on the way home from school to pick up a green pepper. And this is what we came home with:

I can honestly say I've never come home with this much fresh produce before. I hadn't even made my meal plans for the week yet, but I knew I wanted these things in there somewhere. I've never cooked sweet potatoes (other than out of a can) and never had fresh spinach. We stopped in for just a pepper, and piled our basket up with this. The part I'm most excited about? My son is responsible for a lot of it. He asked if we could get more apples (one of the very few fruits he'll eat) and then picked out some oranges, and a watermelon. He's already eaten quite a bit of the watermelon all by himself.

This is one of the biggest reasons I'm making all of these changes. Not only do I want to avoid serious health problems, and the cocktail of pills my mother takes daily, and still be around when my son has babies, but I want to set a good example for him. Apparently it's starting to rub off.

Now THAT is a good week!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

How Epic is Blogging in the Car Lane? Very.

Guess what I learned at lunch today?! Now I can blog from my phone. So now I can blog anywhere, like while sitting in the car lane at school for example. Awesome, yes?

My BFF (same one that taught me how to blog via iPhone) and I signed up for a game on a website where you set health "rules" for yourself for the month and earn points as you stick to them. I'm still not sure how it all works as I've only glanced at it, but I do like the concept. The goals I set were:

1. Walk 5 miles minimum weekly.

2. Eat red meat only once a week.

3. Limit computer time to 20 hours a week.

There were so many more I wanted to add, but it only allows 3 on the free game. I'm not sure whether I'll actually play the game or not, but I'm going to talk to my boys tonight about doing it at home together. To make it more fun for Chris, I need a prize for each week he meets the goals he sets for himself. Any suggestions are appreciated!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Caramel Pumpkin Pudding Cupcakes


Our grocery store finally has canned pumpkin in stock! I was embarrassingly excited when I saw it on the shelf. Like Christmas morning excited. I'm kind of a huge fan of all things pumpkin...

So! I found this recipe for caramel pumpkin cupcakes, and they're only 108 calories (2 WW points) each. I made them at my parent's house, and my dad and brother devoured them. They still don't believe they're only 108 calories..

For Cupcakes:
2 cups yellow cake mix (I used sugar free)
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/3 cup fat free egg substitute
2 tbsp sugar free maple syrup
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp Splenda
1/8 tsp salt

For Topping:
3 caramel cubes
2 tsp light vanilla soy milk (can use regular milk but it will add calories)

Preheat oven to 350. Whisk all cupcake ingredients together until well blended (will not be creamy smooth like regular cake mix). Line or spray 12 cupcake tins. Spoon mix into pan. Bake for 12 minutes, or until toothpick comes out slightly gooey (pudding cupcakes will be a little gooey in the middle).

When cupcakes are cool enough to remove from pan, place close together on a plate. Microwave caramel and soy milk for 1 1/2 minutes on half power. Stir well. Microwave for another 20 seconds, stir. Drizzle immediately over cupcakes. Best served warm! Next time, I think I'll add crushed pecans to the mix ;)

Now this is my kind of diet food!!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Hot 100 Update

This week has been crazy! I just realized it was Friday and wanted to quickly post my update for the Hot 100 Challenge:

1. I weighed in yesterday, and lost 2 more pounds this week (for a total of 26.5 so far) putting me at 223.5! If I can hold steady through the holidays, I shouldn't have a problem with hitting my goal to see 199 on my scale before 2011. Just a few more pounds and I'll lose a point on WW.

2. Exercising this week was a little better, but I had to practically force myself for the first 2. I fit in 2 sessions on the elliptical and a weights session at home. Better than last week, I hope to be better next week. My mom's Zumba DVDs came in this week, and she's decided she's not quite ready for those, so I'm stealing them until she's ready to try again. It's been months since I've been to my Zumba class, and I really miss it.

3. Technically I didn't do it, but Mr. D made a turkey sausage and tomato penne this week that came out soooo good! The man can cook when he puts the effort in. So we did add a new healthy recipe to our family cookbook this week. I also made my own apple cinnamon oatmeal with fresh apples and whole grain oats. It came out better than I expected- no more Quaker instant oatmeal here!

4. Keeping my mood steady and positive was a lot harder this week. I had my follow-up appointment with my doctor, and she wasn't too happy when I admitted that between me and webMD, we decided Zoloft wasn't for me and stopped taking it a few weeks ago. The insomnia was making me a slug, and I started to gain back weight. Since weight gain is a side effect, I don't know if it was the pill, or my being sluggish, but I'm betting it was a combination. So we're trying something new (I made her swear weight gain was not a side effect of this one), it should take about a week or so before I can really notice a difference. Given my reaction to the anti-depressant, she wants to try anti-anxiety meds this time. Day 1, and it made me incredibly dizzy and nauseated. So no workout. Hurling in the gym is a sure way to be escorted out.

All in all, it was a successful week. Can't seem to shake this icky mood though. Zumba and cooking on the agenda tomorrow, that should brighten my mood :)