Saturday, April 10, 2010

8 miles

I just got back from an 8 mile hike at a place called Bears Den here in Virginia.  It was quite the treck. 
 Let me explain quickly why I did this.  My daughter is going on a 24 mile hike on the Appalachian trail this summer with some of the Young Women from the Church.  Today was one of their training hikes.  I volunteered to go as a chaperone and had a great time. 

There were some steep hills to climb which really challanged my lungs, heart and legs and then going down those hills really challanged my leg muscles and joints.  I am glad I did it and am also glad for Motrin :) 

I hope everyone who lives in Northern Virginia is outside enjoying this gorgeous day.  I hope everyone else is having great weather and is enjoying their weekend. 

Apple pie

This is what I had for a snack today: apple pie yogurt. I was going into it a skeptic, but it was yummy and only 80 calories. I also figured you could make your own apple pie yogurt with fresh apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon zest/juice and, yes, a bit of sugar or artificial sweetner or honey. I'm waiting for Audrey's blog on the benefits of yogurt. I do know that those skinny French women eat yogurt regularly. The yogurt section in a French grocery store is three times that of the potato chip section.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Eating Out

1. When I know I'm going out to eat, I try to check the menu on-line first so that I can think about the food I might order instead of hastily choosing something I know I like, but that may not be good for me.

2. I've become excited about food and cooking again, reading my Cooking Light cookbook for ideas and really thinking about the taste of a dish and how no-cal spices could enhance the taste.

3. I've realized that eating healthfully makes those around you who aren't eating healthfully uncomfortable. That's been an interesting realization because I never really thought about peer pressure and food going hand-in-hand, but they totally do. I was recently at a restaurant and noticed that when I went to the bathroom (because of our good friend, water), a bunch of deep fried appetizers suddenly made their way onto my plate. I suspect fellow diners might feel sorry for me; they might be thinking that I don't get to enjoy what they're enjoying, but, interestingly, I am enjoying my meal and don't feel deprived.

4. I stock my mini-van with boxed raisins, pretzel sticks and raw almonds, so that I won't be tempted by on-the-go treats at Target, desserty samples at the grocery store or candy at the check outs.

Ms. Thunder Bumper's Challenge #1

Ladies, most of you are a month into living a healthier lifestyle. This challenge is simple and worth 10 points.

Please post about what changes you've made that now are just a part of your life and not such a challenge and also share with us what your challenges are and how you're working to make them an easier part of your new healthy living lifestyle.

Pictures are always great! I can't wait to hear.

You have until Monday night to do this. Put a little thought into it. What was something easy that you kept doing over the short break what completely went out the door.

FYI If you didn't notice before we will be ending on the 23rd and only having a two day break before we start up again!

Also, if you are new to the blog or didn't do Challenge #4 last session. Please check it out so you can participate in the second part of the challenge SOON!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

My new favorite treat

If you are looking for something yummy, low calorie, AND high in protein; this is the PERFECT snack!
This brand actually is 130 calories for a 1 cup serving. It also has 23 grams of protein!! If you are looking to stay satisfied protein is the way to go :)
I put Agave in mine to sweeten it. My sister loves Stevia. These are both low calorie (the stevia has no calories) and you can sweeten to taste.
If you have never had Greek yogurt it might take a little getting used to but I promise it is worth trying!

Baking Day

I did it.

I baked a batch of chocolate chunk cookies and managed to savor only two on baking day. Yes, it was hard. There's a special place in my brain devoted just to cookies of the chocolate chunk/chip variety. But I split the chocolatey bounty three ways: one third for a friend who lent me a high chair, one third for a dad friend who was letting my boys run around his house with his boys for 3 hours and one third for the five of us. Then to further reduce temptation, I offered my kids a cookie as a part of their otherwise healthy breakfast the day after. Only one took me up on it. Shocking, I know.

I kind of guessed on the calories in one of those babies. 180? What do you think?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

ACK!! It's Thursday!

Well, it will be by the time most of you read this.

While I've counted daily calories for years now, that's just where it ended, daily. I didn't have the foresight to think about what my weekly intake was, let alone monthly! Per Mindy's suggestion, I started using that iPhone 'Lose It' app a few weeks ago. So, EVERY Thursday I overeat. Only Thursdays. Not a huge amount, maybe 100 calories or so, but it is consistently on Thursday. What's up, Thursday? Why don't you like me? Is it because I'm so nice to Wednesday and Mondays? Hmm...maybe it's mental. Sunday-Wednesday, I'm thinking I'm really watching what I'm eating and I know that come the weekend, I'll need to really be careful, since my husband is home and he's a HUGE snacker. That must be it. I just mentally skip Thursday. I'm sorry Thursday, I'll remember....

On a side note, my new bra came in the mail today. I've never mail-ordered a bra before, but let's be realistic, stores just don't carry 32H. Gasp, I know, ginormous, but it's true. I was so excited to get it, since I currently had only one bra (now I have two). I took my scissors, carefully sliced open the package and thought, "WHAT THE ****!! Who's bra is that?!? That thing is HUGE!! ...Oh wait...yeah, that's mine. Dang." So, I tried it on, and even though I was secretly hoping it was too big, it fit pretty well.

As I was undressing to take a shower tonight, I glanced into the mirror. I must be in denial. How can they really be THAT big? So I took off that bra and stuck it on my face. Then I put it on my head. It fit perfectly. What a great hat it would make (just one cup). Go ahead, measure the circumference of your head. That's what I'm carrying around, the circumference of my head, just not on my head. *sigh* Ancestors, the "blessing" you guys saved up for me, probably didn't work exactly the way you anticipated, you should have kept some for yourselves.

I miss cheese

When I first married into this crazy Carlson clan, our fearless leader, Audrey, gave me a subscription to Cooking Light magazine. I loved it! I read it cover to cover every month (skipping the exercise parts) and tried many of the recipes and tips. They almost always used reduced fat sharp cheddar cheese. So I went out and bought some, and it was awful. Turns out I'm kind of a picky cheese eater. At that time, I wasn't quite ready to sacrifice cheesy deliciousness for skinniness. But now I have back fat, and I'm ready to try diet cheese again. Otherwise, I don't get to eat cheese anymore, and I miss it! Does anyone have any recommendations?

Inconvenience Foods

I once heard that if you only shopped on the outer rim of the grocery store, you were almost guaranteed to eat a healthy diet (yes, I know, frozen desserts and white bread are there too). The idea being that the produce, frozen fruits/veggies, dairy, and meats/fish are all there.

I've been thinking a lot about convenience foods and how, so often, what is convenient (no prep time required) isn't healthy. So today I hail inconvenience foods. Seriously, notice next time you're at the grocery, how many of the items in the middle widen your middle! Making yourself a inconvenient snack/meal is time well spent for a healthy wife.

Workout Wednesday

Here's what my four year old and I will be doing while my baby has a nap today. Carson is my Kenpo Karate exercise partner. It's so fun to have my four year old exercise with me. Especially on this workout. What kind of workout can you squeeze in today? Need some ideas? I saw this one this morning. Looked fun and creative. I think I'll put it on my to do list.

Greek Salad

Greek Salad has become my go to lunch this past week.  The first two days of the week I went to this little place in Leesburg called Puccio's, and got their greek salad.  It is sooo yummy.  I did not even have to use any dressing because of all the flavors.  So it inspired me to make my own version of greek salad.  I grilled some chicken that I had marinated in Italian dressing last night and had cut into slices.  I used 5 slices of the grilled chicken, a cup of romaine lettuce and a 1/2 cup of mixed greens.  I then added some cucumbers, cherry tomoatoes, two hard boiled eggs, i removed the yolk, some fat free feta and 2tbs of some greek yogurt based dressing that I got at Wegmans.  I will let everyone know later today how it all tasted. 

Hope everyone is having a great week so far! 

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Eat those calories early!

Ok, I've said it before but "Bob" from Biggest Loser said it again tonight and I decided I'd try to remind myself and the rest of you too!

There is a GOOD reason why there are points for stopping eating 2 hours before bedtime. Eating more of your calories earlier in the day gives you more time to actually use them as energy throughout the day. The calories that you eat at night are less likely to be used up as energy and more likely to convert into fat.

If you skip meals, or eat skimpy meals throughout the day and then pack in the calories in the evening those calories don't have the opportunity to be used by your body when they are needed during the day. EVEN IF YOU ARE IN YOUR "CALORIE RANGE." If you don't have enough food during the day you may also feel light headed, sluggish, and down right exhausted. I've even had the shakes....

It's important to eat enough calories too! I'm talking good calories ladies, not empty calories. Everyone NEEDS a certain amount of calories a day to sustain their bodies BASIC functions. That is usually around 1500-2000 calories for most ladies. Of course that depends on size and your metabolism. That's a ballpark figure....probably why the USDA bases everything on a 2000 calories diet. It's all over the labels on our food!

So, that's why there is all the hype about eating breakfast. It's NOT HYPE! You need the energy to get you going through the day. Oh, yeah...don't forget lunch. You can't be too busy for's a pitfall. YOUR BODY NEEDS ENERGY! Fruits, Vegetables and WHOLE grains contain the nutrients your body needs to do what it has to do...and FIBER which is in all of those things help keep you satisfied and feeling fuller longer....and PROTEIN does that too!!!! BALANCED DIET!!!

So for today I'm saying eat good calories starting early in the day and taper off in the evening....

I'll talk more about the food pyramid later. I'll step off my soap box now!!! LOVE YOU GUYS!!!

Swimwear Giveaway

Have you heard of the Trainer Momma? I started reading her blog when she first started and I was instantly hooked. She's a personal trainer, nutritionist, health nut, mother of three, who was once overweight. Now she provides free information on her blog. Not only that, but whenever I have any questions about anything, she lets whoever e mail her and she is always quick to respond. I feel like I know her on a personal level even though I've never met her. Okay, so here's the fun part of her blog. Every month she does an awesome giveaway. All you have to do is let her know on her blog that you're interested and she puts your name in the hat. I have yet to win anything, but my neighbor has. Check out this months giveaway if you are interested.

I have yet to find my favorite swimsuit. I love the 1950's swimwear where it is all one piece from the middle of your calf to your shoulder. Not like the tankini's where it will show my belly when I raise my arms. I don't care if the bottom is like a skirt of shorts. Anyone know where I can find anything like it?

Grate food

These two Ikea cheese graters make me happy and here's why:

Today I made a little Waldorf side salad for lunch: grated 1/2 Granny Smith, cut up 4 dates, chopped up 5 walnut halves, added a teaspoon of low-fat sour cream and a 1/2 tsp of honey. It tickled my taste buds (400 calories, dates at 264!)

I also like to grate parmesan cheese, lemon zest, and potatoes. There's something about the prep time consumed in grating that makes me feel gourmet. What's more, the enjoyment of the food is extended to include the prep time.

Plus those graters were a gift from a cool cousin-in-law.

Plus we don't have an Ikea nearby.

Snack Time

Meet my new best friend.  It's fat free and a nice sized tablespoonful is enough for me to dip my apple slices in at lunch.  At only 50 calories for a Tbsp, this snack is getting me through the post-candy letdown.  I feel like I'm still enjoying the sweets, without all the bad side effects.

When I'm in the mood for savory instead of sweet, I go for this:

Four Tbsp of salsa is only 20 calories.  Pair it with 15 of the baked Tostitos for a 140 calorie snack.  Not bad, especially because it feels "junky" but includes veggies.

And though I stayed away from the candy almost the entire day yesterday, I did cave at 8:00 and took Audrey's advice to have a bite sized Milky Way.  It was just enough to satisfy my sweets craving but left me wanting more.  Gotta have a different plan tonight.

I'm looking for other 100 - 150 calorie snack ideas . . . tell me what you've got ladies!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Lose It!

I'm using a free app on my iPhone called Lose It to count calories. I really like it, even though it has hardly any mexican food in it's database. When that happens, I go here and type in my recipe. Then I input the nutritional information in a new recipe on Lose It, and it saves it forever. Nice! So what sites & programs are you using?

Let Me Do a Breif One

I thought I'd do a brief introduction so you don't think I was another blog stocker when you see my name on your posts :) It's Spring Break here in Utah, and we have a busy day planned. I'll do more of a formal introduction at a later time, but for now, here you go. Hi, my name is Alicia, and I am an emotional eater. I am a friend of Marci. I am a wannabe vegetable lover, but a true junk food eater. I am a wannabe exercise lover, but have yet to feel the love part. I am very excited to join this blog, read your posts, and share our trails and successes.

Here We Go!

It's 10:30 and I've gone on a half hour walk, done the Wii fit for a half hour, had 36 ounces of water and a healthy breakfast.  I'm committed to being more committed this round.  And by golly, I am going to steer clear of the ten pounds of Easter candy staring me in the eyes {seriously, the Peeps, they're looking at me}.  I am bound and determined to have self control.  Tell me whay you guys are doing to avoid the bounty of yesterday's candy harvest - short of dumping it of course, which would never fly with my kids!

Time off

Alright, I'm just going to say it. I only managed to stay relatively healthy for 3 of the 7 off days. My downfalls were homemade granola, brie cheese, hot cross buns and appetizers for dinner. On the up side: being outside digging in the dirt, hanging out at the playground and walking, walking, walking.

But now, I'm so glad Monday is here. Looking forward to being healthy with all of you!