Health and Clean Eating

August 9, 2010

Good Monday evening to you all!  I am happy, happy today! 😀  The pool is coming along, the kids were good today, I went to a fantastic BodyPump class (ummm…400 calories….the most I’ve ever burned in BodyPump ever!!)  Plus, it’s launch week, where all of the new material is introduced, which makes it fun!  If you’re ever in my area, let me know, and you can come to my gym with me…you won’t be disappointed.  (Email for details! :))

For more information:  check out the Les Mills web site!

BodyPump

I would like to begin this next section with some questions:

Are you tired during the day, especially around mid-afternoon?

Do you feel sluggish and “foggy”?

Do you have health issues such as diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol or high blood pressure?

Then clean eating is for you. It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle!  Please don’t be scared off by that statement.  If you are just beginning, here are some things you can do to ease into the clean eating lifestyle:

1.  STOP eating fast food.  Anything that you make at home, in your own kitchen, is better than this:

Not sure about the story of the 4 year old burger that didn’t mold…you can Google it and make your own determination. 😉

2.  Start eating more of these:

Homemade Eat Clean Wheat Berry Salad

Veggies!!!

I think that is the perfect way to ease into the clean eating lifestyle.  It’s that simple!!

OK, so let me show you some of what I’ve been eating these last couple of days:

April’s brownies with peanut butter (which were great, by the way!! Thanks, April!)

Amy’s All American Veggie Burger with some organic ketchup, mustard, goat cheese and vinegar green beans on the side.

Ezekial toast with the last of my Artisana coconut butter. 😦  Egg whites (great source of a clean protein!)

Panoli!!

It’s the return of the panoli. For those of you that are new to my blog, I actually invented something delicious! 🙂  A whole grain pancake, made really, really, thin.  Stuffed with protein, and eaten for breakfast.  This panoli had a cottage cheese and blueberry blend.  It looks interesting, but it was yummy and sweet! 🙂

Thin.

The pancake was super thin.

It was soooo good! 🙂

Lots of smiles today! 😀  I am still working on my dot com, and will let you know when it is up and running.  Possibly by tomorrow!

Have a great night!



Sweet, Salty, Savory

August 4, 2010

Good evening!  Hope your hump day has been great!

I want to start by catching you all up on a decision that I’ve made after careful deliberation these last few days.  I’ve decided to put Insanity on the back burner because of a couple of reasons:

1.  I can’t seem to fit it in with all of my gym classes right now, and

2.  I’m decreasing my cardio and increasing my weight lifting (and my weights!)  for the next few weeks.

I have, however, decided to bring it with me while I am on vacation in a few weeks, along with my portable DVD player. 😉  I know how it is at resorts and they don’t offer any classes or anything like that beyond maybe some machines and some free weights.

SO, with that being said, I took a BodyAttack Express class (45 minutes) and a BodyPump class (60 minutes) and burned 723 calories!

I have been an eating machine lately, because I’ve been taking classes back to back, and burning anywhere from 700 to 900 calories!  And just to mention, 1200 calories isn’t sustainable when you burn so many calories. So I’ve increased my calories.

Parfait

That was yesterday’s lunch.  A whole peach, Greek yogurt (with 2 packets of Truvia), and granola that was a little “well done”.  It was awesome and totally filling for lunch.

I have increased the amount of water that I’ve been drinking lately, and it works out to be about 90 ounces a day (when I’m on my game!)  Alas, I’m kind of getting sick of water.  I know how good it is for you, and it flushes the toxins and salts out of our system, and our bodies are approximately 70% water.  It is sooo important.

I can’t drink diet soda’s anymore, because they have that “chemical” taste to me now.  Sometimes I make decaf tea (green or otherwise) and chill and drink that.  Today I wanted lemonade, but without the chemicals and/or sugar and artificial unclean whatnots they put in everything:

Healthy Lemonade

In the frozen section in the grocery store, they sell a lemon juice that doesn’t have any preservatives in it (unlike RealLemon, which does!!!)  So I took purified water, ice, lemon juice and Truvia and mixed it all together.  Well, there you go! Healthy Lemonade!!!

Something else I’ve been craving:

Yuuuummmmmm!!!

Yes, it’s a sweet potato.  I tend to eat a lot of them because they are really good for you. They have some great nutrients such as vitamin C, potassium, fiber and carotenoids.  It becomes scrumptious when you put a tablespoon of Cinnamon Peanut Butter on it.  Mine just happens to be Market Pantry (from Target).  OMG.  I think I’ve had them at dinner 3 days in a row!!

For example, with green beans and *fresh* sausage (from out local butcher) and:

with cauliflower and chicken.

Today I had a really great lunch, too! Lately I seem to be on an exciting cooking adventure, LOL!

I started with these burgers:

Fried it up in a pan, and added some balsamic vinegar to it which turned into a nice coating on the burger:

Are you wondering what is on the chicken burger?

Here’s a close up:

Yes, more peaches. (I live in Georgia, after all! :)) On top of a whole ounce of goat cheese!  It was sweet, salty, savory from the vinegar…perfect.

Along with cottage cheese and some more peaches, with a drizzle of balsamic!

My lettuce has been growing:

It’s actually grown quite a bit since my last picture! 🙂

Tomorrow I’m going to be making something with these.  Can you guess what they are??

Question:  Are you a cardio junky, or more into weight lifting?  Do you find it hard to tone back the cardio?


Happy, happy! It’s FRIDAY!!

July 30, 2010

Happy Friday, happy weekend!

I am so happy the weekend is here.  I guess it has been a couple of days, so let’s catch up!  Thursday I went to BodyStep with all of my kids in tow.  I had an uninterrupted class where I busted it out.  Seriously busted it out. Resulting in a 623 calorie burn!  I told my instructor, my calorie burn is always indicative of how much I’ve enjoyed myself. 🙂

Jeremy also came home Thursday night, which was a blessing, as I had “the week from heck”.  I do not wish to revisit the week so if you haven’t been following, please see my previous posts. 😉

Let’s talk about my lettuce in my Aerogarden.  It’s growing fast!  I haven’t bought another one yet, though….

Home-grown lettuce 🙂

Sophia has some sprouts of her own but they’re flowers. 😉

I could not decide what to eat that night, either.  It was a toss up between ordering out for sashimi and sushi or making something at home.  I voted on a Gardenburger with chipotle-gouda cheese, a salad, and cottage cheese with Mrs. Dash:

That’s actually a really good picture, LOL!  The following shows the whole plate:

YUM!

I ate all of that, then my weight in natural peanut butter with graham crackers.  I could not stop eating!  Bottomless pit, that was me. 😉  I wish I had a picture of what I ate for lunch, the girls came out to lunch with me and the kids and we had Mexican.  I had fish taco’s (no tortillas) and 2 frozen strawberry margaritas that looked like this, because I felt

totally entitled after the week I’d had. 😀  SO, loaded with sugar, and some other excess sugar I ate (I hadn’t had any in almost 2 weeks) I woke up this morning feeling AWFUL.

Determined to start my day out the right way, I started with my old standby:

Lunch was another smoked salmon sandwich:

Complete with greek yogurt and some Mrs. Dash………..YUM!  With a side of another old standby, cottage cheese and no-sugar added fruit spread:

The end of the week always sneaks  up on me and for whatever reason, I run out of ideas for meals and I also run out of food, LOL!  So we wound up ordering out BBQ, which is a favorite of the entire family:

I stayed away from the mac-n-cheese and potato salad and made some broccoli to accompany the pulled pork and big honkin’ slice of white stripped-of-all-nutrients bread.

Tomorrow I am hitting the gym for Attack and Bodypump and then who knows what the rest of the weekend holds?

What are your plans for the weekend? Doing anything fun?


Stuck Beads, New Foods, and Kitchen Catastrophies

July 28, 2010

Howdy y’all!  Hope your Wednesday has been treating you well.  Personally, I can’t wait for this week to be over.  It has seriously been one thing after another this week!

Besides the puppy issues (she’s been good since the Monday Marker Debacle), Sophia *almost* ended up in the emergency room today.  I was at the gym, taking my BodyPump class, when one of the girls from the daycare walk in and toward me.

Ugh.  You know there’s something that’s going to pull you out of class when they walk up to you.  And we were in the middle of doing lunges off of the step, too.  She proceeded to inform me that my darling Sophia stuck a bead in her ear and she couldn’t get it out.  Amongst my rolling eyes I walked with her to the daycare and had a look-see at Sophia’s ear.

Yep! Sure enough, a white bead was stuck in her ear.…and I’m standing there wondering, how the heck am I going to get that out?  Well, a miracle happened, because there was a small piece of thread and I got tweezers and pulled out the bead.  This story is taking longer to tell then the actual occurrence, LOL! But all’s well that end’s well, I guess. 😉

Now, onto NEW FOOD!  My new food this week that I was able to find at Whole Paycheck was a kabocha squash!

I took the squash, cut it up, baked it at 350 degrees for 40 minutes, tossed 1tsp of butter and a heap load of cinnamon on top and it looked like this:

then this:

and then I gobbled it all up.  It was 2 cups, (I know this because I’ve been measuring my food to stay within my calorie restrictions), and it was all gone! 🙂

I liked it.  It kind of reminded me of a cross between pumpkin and butternut.  I wonder if you can toast the seeds? They were huge!!!

This morning for breakfast I poached 2 eggs (I’m getting the hang of this poaching thing….1:45 is all I need to have the egg perfectly cooked.

Poached Egg. Covered in Hogs Breath Green Hot Sauce.

There was leftover crab, so yesterday for lunch I made crab salad….and this was easily the tastiest food that I have made in a while.


King crab, Greek yogurt, Lemon and Pepper Mrs. Dash, Lemon Juice, Hot sauce. Heavenly.  On an organic, preservative-free spelt tortilla.

There was another spicy black bean Gardenburger with the addition of 1 oz. of goat cheese on a thin bun:

spiced up with Chipotle Tabasco Sauce

It was very melty when I ate it.  Melted goat cheese…yuuuummmmmmmy!

There was smoked salmon on a thin bun with Greek yogurt:

and cottage cheese with Mrs. Dash.

As for my kitchen catastrophe:  I decided I was going to try and make coconut butter.  I had all of these grand ideas, that I could make it at home, and it would turn out like my fave, Artisana.

Coconut EXPLOSION!

Um….there was an explosion of coconut in my kitchen!  And it never got creamy.  It just got hot...and then the explosion happened and my Vitamix ate my tamper:

Yep.  I then proceeded to make pecan butter (I was bound and determined)  and it ate my wooden spoon! OK, it wasn’t funny when it happened, but it’s kind of funny now.  The pecan butter actually got kind of creamy and looked like this:

See?  It tasted good, too…until I got wood stuck in my teeth. 😉

Guess I gotta work on my tampering! 🙂

What kind of kitchen catastrophe’s have you all had? I know I can’t be the only one….(uh, please help me out here, LOL)


Sprouts, Shopping, and a Cleaning Frenzy! Oooooh MY!!

July 26, 2010

Hey Cutie Patooties!  How has your Monday been?  Mine has been extraordinarily frustrating and productive at the same time.  One week until school starts! It’s so hard dragging all 3 kids around everywhere. First they got dragged to the gym, where I took BodyPump.  Then we came home, and then took a field trip to Whole Foods which is about half an hour away.  Then, when we got back, Biscuit decided to chew on a blue crayola non-toxic washable marker.

OMG. Her paws were blue!  As was my carpet. 😦  What commenced was a cleaning frenzy that lasted almost 3 hours.  It rolled into the kids, because I’m tired of their rooms being a mess, and I desperately want my house back.  My one son’s room still isn’t clean!!  Wait ’till they get back to school.  <insert evil laugh here, LOL>

I wanted to show you all this:

Salad Sprouts!

All it took was 2 days.  They were even bigger today!  I really think I’m going to invest in another Aerogarden.  They are worth their weight in gold!  Pretty soon, I’ll have lettuce plants that I can harvest for up to 4 months!

So, as I mentioned above, we took a trip to Whole Foods today, which always makes me happy.  Please let me point out that I do not shop there on a regular basis….I shop there for specific specialty items that I need.  Otherwise, I’d spend a ton of $$.  I did splurge and buy my lunch there today:

I ate it in the car in the parking lot! 🙂

Seared Tuna.  It was fantastic. I am still totally on my seafood kick!  My other purchases included:

Whole wheat pastry flour.  I hear it’s awesome.  RAW nuts to make nut butter with, Annie’s Bunnies Mac and Cheese, and Seeds of Change (the same company that makes the salad dressing that I loooove) Cuban kit.

Amy’s Chili (I’ve been looking for this forever, I hear it’s good, we shall see!)  Pine nuts to make homemade pesto, Pumpkin to make protein pumpkin muffins  (I have a small story about the pumpkin),  organic red beans, hydroponic basil and Braggs Aminos.

About the Pumpkin:  I went to my local grocery store (Publix) and asked them where their pumpkin was, and they told me it was a “seasonal item”.  I was dumbfounded that a grocery store wouldn’t carry at least a couple throughout the year!  Silly.

A HUGE package of blueberries – only $4.99!!! Avocado, and parsley.

Then, a BIG SURPRISE, A kabocha squash!  I’ve been looking for this type of squash forever.  Bloggers talk about it all of the time and I’ve never been able to find it.  Can’t wait to try it! 🙂

See?  Everything I bought there was for a reason.  There was no frivolous buying whatsoever.  I also bought one other thing and we ate it for dinner (well, Aidan and I did, the other kids aren’t big on seafood)…..

There were two of these HUGE clusters.  They were the bulk of the $$ I spent at Whole Paycheck!  The above picture doesn’t really do them justice, but hopefully the one below will:

CRAAAAAAB!

Hahahaha!  That was about 10 ounces of meat!  I ate 6 ounces for dinner!! 😀  It was so fantastic, and was totally different from the snow crab I got from my local grocery store!

Of course I have been eating my normal eats as well:

Spinach salad with goat cheese,

hardboiled eggs with Ezekial bread and Strawberry All Fruit,

BSN Syntha-6 Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shake,

and a fave of mine: oven roasted zucchini chips.  I used whole wheat bread crumbs, parmesan, garlic powder, salt, pepper and paprika.

Well, after the completely exhausting day that I have had, I think it’s time to hit the hay!  I did get a BodyPump class in this morning at the gym (no Insanity yet, sorry!)  I think Wednesday will be a GREAT day to start the Insanity program, as I don’t go to the gym that day. 😉

Hope you all have a fantastic evening! See y’all tomorrow!! 🙂


15 Things About Me

July 24, 2010

Hey Y’all!

Hope your Saturday has been absolutely fantastic.  I had a hectic morning – not sure why, because I didn’t get up until 9 (the kids are really sleeping in lately!) and didn’t step foot out of the house until after 11:30.  I am still melting here in GA, so we decided to go on the lake today with all our kids and their friends too:

Did I mention that the air temperature was 98 degrees, and the lake temperature was 117 degrees? It was like taking a bath…in a hot tub! 😉  About 2 hours in to our adventure the storms started to roll in so we took cover in a cove until the storm passed, then headed back to the dock.

I can’t believe all of the kids fell asleep! How often does that happen, lol!

Today I wanted to share with you all a little about myself.  I tell tales about my family and friends, and share my kitchen catastrophes, but I’m not sure that I share a lot about me, at least in recent months.

So here we go…15 things about me:

1. I don’t want to have any regrets in the future. NONE! Life’s too short.

2. I NEED to eat clean. I’m terribly afraid of the chemicals that are in our foods. I try my best, but sometimes I fall off of the wagon.  I always get back on, though! Old habits are so terribly hard to break.

3. I really enjoy iCarly on Nickelodeon.  LOL! That’s one funny show! 🙂

4. I need to enjoy life more and worry less (and chill out, I’m really tense and uptight a lot of the time, except when I’m at the gym, which is probably one of many reasons that I LOVE the gym.  Actually, I LOVE my gym, not just any gym.)  Maybe someday I’ll share why.

5. I REALLY want to get in better shape, even though I know I’ve become fitter over the last year because my VO2 Max went from 42 to 50 (that is the amount of oxygen that your body uses…it’s used as a measure of fitness.)  I have before and after pictures from the past year, but I just don’t have enough confidence to post them in this public of a venue.  What I mean about “wanting to get in better shape” is building lean muscle and dropping my fat percentage.  It’s not easy, and definitely a continuous work in progress.

6. I’ve found that I can’t just “eat clean”…that I have to count calories. I ate clean for over 6 months and my weight went UP. (see 8 below, which I suspect is the reason why, among others.)

7. I am a calorie counter and scale weigh-er. I totally have to do the two of these things to stay sane, and yes, I’m just that OCD.  And you know what?  I’m ok with that.  It’s just me. And I wish I had a YAY! Scale in pink fur, LOL:

8. I can’t eat nut butters on a regular basis because they are a complete indulgence for me, (as is coconut butter)…addictive!!! JUST LIKE CHOCOLATE!!! and yes, I will over-indulge. These are the 3 things that will send me over the edge, LOL!

My Favorite Coconut Butter...Artisana! Aaaahhhhh 😀

9.  I like to read, and read a lot.  My newest endeavor is The Complete Cancer Cleanse, by Cherie Calbom.  I’m petrified of cancer, as everyone should be.

10.  Other books that I have downloaded to my Nook but have yet to read are Shit My Dad Says by Justin Halpern and Worst Case by James Patterson.

11.  The place I’ve wanted to go since I was about 5 years old is Paris, France.  I have also added Tuscany, Italy to that list.

12.  I really want to write and publish a book.  I asked for a typewriter when I was 4 from Santa.  That’s when I wrote my first “book”.  I wish I had that book today!

13.  I am constantly reassessing my life: what I want to be doing, where I am going.  It’s not an easy process.

14.  I plan on buying a small house on the Gulf of Mexico in the next few years.

15.  I enjoy blogging, and through my blogging, have begun to enjoy cooking.  I never new I would be a food blogger, and it’s FUN!

With all that being said, everything that I have eaten this week has been totally CLEAN. Not one bad thing, and I’m proud of that.

And with all of that being said, maybe we should get on to the food part of my post?

I am a relatively new cook.  I poached my first egg ever this week! Easy as pie. 😀

How to poach an egg:

1.  Crack 1 egg or however many eggs you want to eat into a coffee cup.

Egg. Coffee Cup.

2.  Pour the egg gently into simmering water.  Try not to break the yolk. 😉

There's an egg in there!

and voila! A poached egg 1:45 minutes later!

Oh, step 3:  take out of simmering water with slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.

Poached Egg

4.  Commence Eating:

Heaven!

I found some spelt muffins at my local health food store in the freezer section.  They’re yummy!

Another egg picture:

Omelet.

Mushroom and onion omelet with Earthgrains Wheat Berry and Honey bread with Polaner Peach All-fruit. 🙂

Dinner tonight was a Spicy Black Bean Gardenburger, with Mozzarella cheese on a spelt muffin.  Green beans and salad accompanied it on my new Tuscan Olive Plates which I love:

I have been a HUGE fan of Mrs. Dash lately, especially because I can’t eat a lot of sodium.  I’ve been putting it on everything!

Every night about 10:00 I am starving whether I work out or not.  So I’ve been having one last meal of protein, which is good for you before bed anyway because it helps with muscle gains and repair:

Greek yogurt, stevia, cocoa powder and 1/2 a nanner.  Totally satisfying and under 200 calories.  Total calories today: 1204.

Well, hope you enjoyed the post. See you in the am! Sweet dreams my friends!


Cooking Frenzy

July 22, 2010

Hello all!

Since I last posted, I have completely cleaned up my diet, and have been on a cooking frenzy!  It’s crazy how much I’ve cooked over the last couple of days, and I have lots of pictures too! 🙂

Has it been hot where you are? Here in GA it’s been in the high 90’s every day!  I honestly feel like I can’t get cool.  Hence the digging in my backyard as of Monday morning at 7am:

The Big Hole

We’ve been working on getting this pool for a while now.  There were all sorts of issues to begin with but they’ve been resolved, as you can see!  Can’t wait for it to be finished!  I’m an instant gratification kind of person.  When I want something, I want it right away, and usually yesterday. LOL  I’m working on my patience. 😉

On to the cooking frenzy. I’ve obviously been on a clean eating kick.  I am also on a 1200 calorie kick, also.  I’ve been eating a ton of food for that little calories.  Let me explain what I’ve been doing.  In a nutshell I’ve:

1.  Cut out preservatives

2.  Lowered sodium and fat

3.  Increased protein

4.  Lowered carbs

5.  No refined sugar

That leaves unprocessed, whole foods.  In a nutshell!

I guess I’ll start with breakfast, since it is obviously the first meal of the day.  After we got back from NY, I didn’t have anything in the fridge.  Including eggs.  The chicken farmer down the road told my husband that his chickens weren’t laying very many eggs.  I was so disappointed, because I love my fresh eggs.  Off to the grocery store I went, though, because I cannot not have eggs in the house!  I bought 2 cartons of 18 and commenced to hard-boil an entire carton:


and there were some omelets but they all look the same, LOL! This morning I made a 5 egg white omelet that had chipotle gouda cheese in it.  YUM!

I’ve been all about hot sauce and seafood this week. I’m giving you advance warning!

We did manage to get some homegrown beefsteak tomatoes from the chicken farmer and they were so great!

These became part of a sandwich I made with snow crab (that I took the time to crack out of the shell!) a preservative free “thin bun” and hot sauce for lunch one day:

I do not recommend the snow crab.  It took forever to shell them, and the end of the process (a total process, by the way) I got 4 ounces of meat from 2 bunches of crabs.  King crab all the way!!! 😀

I also made some chicken tortilla soup this week and it was so good. It had veggies in it, chicken broth, chicken, and a ton of chipotle chili powder along with some cumin, onion, oregano, garlic….

Soup's On!

I ate that for lunch 2 days in a row!  I did find some tortilla chips at Publix (my local grocery store) that are clean so I had half an ounce of those with it today:

Yep, they're blue!

The end result. 😀

Since I am going to be home until at least November, I decided to grow some lettuce in my Aerogarden.   I love my Aerogarden!  Since the pool is taking up most of the backyard I’m not sure we’re going to have room for much of a garden next year.  I really want to plant some herbs too…maybe an excuse to get another Aerogarden? Hmmmm!

My Aerogarden

Those are little pods that have seeds in them.  According to the directions, I should have spouts in 1- 3 days!  I will take progress pictures to share. 🙂

The POD

Well, back to the food. 😉

I had purchased scallops along with the crab (I don’t know where this seafood kick came from!)  I’ve never actually cooked a scallop before.  I read how to do it online (broiling them) and made a little lemon juice and paprika sauce to eat along with them.  They were good, but I think I need practice at broiling.  😉

With some broccoliciousness on the side!

Dinner tonight was chicken.  Jeremy’s family recipe for Fireman’s Chicken.  Marinated, grilled chicken.  I had 4 ounces of sweet potato with cinnamon on it and a really large spinach salad on the side.  Fireman’s chicken, by the way, is when the Firemen raise money by selling their marinated, BBQ chicken.  They sometimes have tables where you can go and eat outside with the family, or you can get it to go.  It’s common up in Western New York and Northern NY.  Not sure where else. 😉

BBQ Chicken

along with the sweet potato:

and salad make for a perfect meal. 😀

The salad had tomatoes, banana peppers, red onion, mushrooms, goat cheese and Seeds of Change Organic Dressing.  I love goat cheese!  Absolutely one of my favorite cheeses.

Let’s talk about working out for a minute.  I took class at the gym today (BodyStep) and burned 573 calories in 60 minutes.  KILLER!!! And I loved every.single.minute of it! 🙂

Question of the day:

What are you all cooking this summer?  I love trying new things!

Hope you all have a great weekend!