Archive for ‘Food’

September 19, 2011

Go Tigers!

This weekend my Tigers did not disappoint. Clemson had a great game, and I had a great weekend. I tried a new beer, ate a healthy dinner, and relaxed with friends on Friday. Saturday was a bit more exciting and included significant tailgating. I’ll spare you all the nitty-gritty details, but there was some of this

the boys

and too much of this (okay… all of it).

Mellow Mushroom calzone

Although I had a great time in Clemson, I took some time Sunday to recount my indulgences***. I discovered that I ate/drank twice the calories I normally eat/drink on a weekday. (By the way, dinner was paired with a Victory Hop Devil.)

victory hop devil

Since I often indulge on weekends, I’m not floored by this discovery, but it was still an eye-opener for me. I don’t regret eating my weight in calzone because it really was that delicious, but I hope to be more mindful of my splurges in the future.

To help heal my veggie-starved, fat-stuffed body, Sunday was a bit healthier. I drank water and coconut water to combat the sodium of Saturday’s treats. I also ate my greens.

dinner salad

The dinner above was friggin’ awesome. I had been drooling over that salad dressing in the store for a while now, and I’m so glad I finally bought it. The salad included spinach, dressing, half a pear, and cashews. As you can see, I added a side of French bread.

How was your weekend? Did your team win too?

***To help me “recount my indulgences,” I’ve been using the iPhone app, MyNetDiary. It’s free and incredibly helpful.

September 17, 2011

One Love, Some Sweat & A Beer

This all-over-the-place post covers love, sweat, and beers. How appropriate.

LOVE: As many regular readers already know, I love packages! They’re like presents, even if you order them for yourself. Presents from me, to me, are still presents!

I received Mama Pea’s book, Peas and Thank You from Sara and The Foodie Diaries yesterday. Thanks for sending that Sara! I can’t wait to test out some of the recipes. (I once made Mama Pea’s Tamale Pie, which I got from her blog, and it was amazing. I bet these are great too!)

peas and thank you

SWEAT: Here is a workout I did last week. It’s a 10-minute boot-camp style cardio routine. I did it twice in a row.

10-Minute At-Home Cardio

I made a video for it, but it’s dreadful. I posted this PDF (click the link above) that you can print. If you don’t know what the moves are and just can’t live another day without laughing at viewing my video, shoot me an email. I’ll email it or post a better version next Saturday.

BEER: I tried a new beer this week. Kevin and I went to a British restaurant, so I had a grilled chicken salad and an English beer. (I prefer to order my drinks in context.)

samuel smith

I got a Samuel Smith’s Oatmeal Stout. I give this beer a B, and let me briefly explain why.

porter

It is strong in toasted malts, and it also has a nice coffee flavor. I like to think of this as a pint of breakfast – toast n’ black coffee. It’s very smooth and relatively mild, but it still has a lot of flavor. On the other hand, it does not have that thick, milky like consistency – I’m thinking of Guinness here. It’s actually thinner with a little carbonation to it. Overall – I was very satisfied.

grilled chicken, lettuce, cucumbers, & beer

September 16, 2011

Sweeeet Friday Post

In the words of Def Leppard, pour some sugar on me. In the words of Tiff, pour less sugar in my food.

Many of you know Americans consume loads of sugar. According to FitSugar:

According to the American Heart Association, eating too much is contributing to a plethora of health issues including obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke. Women are urged to cut back and consume no more than 100 calories of added processed sugar each day, which is equal to six teaspoons (25 grams).

WebMD has shed some less than sweet insight into refined sugar. I’ll let you check that out for yourself.

As you can see, too much added and/or refined sugar aren’t fun. You know what is fun? Learning how much sugar is in some everyday foods and treats, of course! You know what kind of “fun” I’m talking about – it’s like smelling the stinky-ness of your gym bag fun or looking at the blackheads on your Biore pore strip fun.

Here are just a few foods that I found interesting…

One Can of Coke (Not even the Mega Gulp at your favorite gas station) – 39 grams

source

***Diet Coke isn’t so great either since the artificial sweeteners can make your body think it’s getting sugar. When it doesn’t, you end up wanting more food. I’m not so sure I buy this argument, but I’ve heard it numerous times.

Grapes (1 cup) – 14.9 grams (they’re not added sugars, but they aren’t slow-burn carbs either)

source

Light Yoplait Yogurt – 14 grams

https://i0.wp.com/yoplait.com/images/light/harvest-peach.pngsource

Fiber One Oats & Caramel Chewy Bar – 9 grams

http://s.shld.net/is/image/Sears/08711441000_20100324080304067?hei=248&wid=248&op_sharpen=1&resMode=sharp&op_usm=0.9,0.5,0,0source

Pumpkin Latte (tall, skim, with whip) – 38 grams (37 grams no whip)

https://i2.wp.com/cdn.blisstree.com/files/2011/09/pumpkinspicesbux-167x200.pngsource

Despite my pumpkin obsession, I’m not a huge fan of pumpkin lattes. I usually save up for my once (or twice) yearly peppermint mochas instead. Yum!

Did any of these treats surprise you? Do you have any more sugar shockers you can share?

***All sugar counts came from Livestrong.com or Starbuck’s website.

By the way, I have to give Lindsey at Cardio Pizza some link love for two reasons.

      1. She has excellent info about self hosting in this post.
      2. Yesterday, I did a great treadmill workout she posted. I almost skipped the gym, but when I realized my legs felt surprisingly refreshed in the morning, I wore them out with this workout.
Tomorrow’s post is a fun one, so be sure to check back for it!
September 14, 2011

WIAW: Ugly Edition

It’s time for another What I Ate Wednesday (WIAW). I feel awful about this, but this week’s WIAW is the Ugly Edition. No pretty food here!

I’m eating the same thing M-F for breakfast, lunch, and snack all week… unless I get a chocolate craving, of course. Dinner will change a little, but even that is pretty basic.

I start my protein packed day with first breakfast, which is a salt-free rice cake with 1 TBS of natural peeb. It’s great workout fuel.

Second breakfast a few hours later is a third of a cup of old fashioned oats, half a banana (mashed in oats), and one scoop of natural vanilla whey protein. I also have one third of a cup of raspberries on the side.

Lunch is the ugliest meal of the day, but darn is it filling! I have two servings of lean deli meat, half a sweet potato (I guess approx 7 oz), and one 50-calorie pack of steamed Brussels sprouts. It’s ugly, but it’s yummy. That’s what counts, right?

I usually try not to buy deli meat for various reasons, and now I have one more reason to add to the list. Sodium! I knew deli cuts had a lot of sodium, but I didn’t realize how much until after I got home from the store. Whoops!

Snack has been 110 calories worth of 2% cottage cheese and 15 raw almonds. This is a very fatty yet protein-packed snack. It’s ugly, but it’s incredibly satisfying!

Dinner has been meat, a green vegetable, and a carb. Typical. I had the same thing Monday and Tuesday, beef tenderloin. I enjoyed it with a spinach salad Monday night and broccoli last night.

Tonight is chicken night instead. Chicken gets boring fast, but I have to admit that I really do like the taste of plain ole’ baked chicken. I’m not sure if I’ll pair it with rice, quinoa, or something else all together.

Snacks have been all over the place (whole wheat pita, peeb, or popcorn), so they aren’t pictured. I don’t really think you need any more pictures of ugly food anyway, do ya???

Do you often eat “plain” meals at your house? Or does something generally have a sauce or require a real recipe?
Be sure to check out Peas and Crayons for other great meal ideas!

PS: At least Leia finds them attractive…

September 13, 2011

Burning calories… then eating them all up again

I rocked the gym yesterday. Seriously. I owned that place. After a short warm up, I completed my regular leg workout. I followed that with 30 minutes of stair-steppin’. Let’s just say that stair climber now knows who’s boss.

I’m happy with the way I’ve been packing on muscle lately, but I’m always careful not to over-do it with legs. That’s the only part of me that can bulk; though I must admit, even my legs don’t actually bulk all that much. Too many days of heavy lifting and too many days of bike (spin class aside) and/or stair climber can have a huge impact. For that reason, I’ll probably complete the same leg workout next week with 3 sets of 12 reps for each exercise. I may also skip the stair climber. Don’t worry; I’ll be back at it the following week!

Pear

***Here’s a little tidbit of info – those with pear shapes should shy away from stair climbers and stationary bikes. These machines build the muscles you want to slim. The machines give many people a great rear view, but if you want to minimize any pear-ness, I’d limit stair climbing and stationary biking (spin class aside) to less than once per two weeks. I also happen to think stair machines with actual turning steps are the best steppers for lower body shaping.

I proceeded to consume loads of protein throughout the day. For my 1366 calories (a wee bit low, but not too much considering weekend splurges), I had 77 grams of protein. Sweeeeet. Sadly, my sodium was a bit high, but that’s okay every once in a while. This dinner helped with my muscle recovery.

local beef

Okay, that wasn’t my real dinner. I made this tenderloin roast last night, and that’s the entire roast. My dinner was more like this.

local beef n' spinach salad

Yeah, that’s a lunch plate, not a huge dinner plate. Can you believe that’s 3.5 oz of beef? No, a better question is, can you believe that’s a recommended “portion?” I know that 12-oz restaurant steaks are ridiculous, but I guess it takes a while to re-train your brain from those gargantuan servings.

To wrap up the post, I just haaaaaad to share some links I’m loving.

  1. Regarding the small plates… I love this Small Plate Movement. I recommend it to everyone!
  2. I enjoyed reading Runner’s World’s healthy approach to weight loss. No gimmicks here.
  3. I also can’t wait to try a few of Martha Stewart’s eggplant recipes, like this one or this one.

Have you heard of the Small Plate Movement? Do you follow “recommended” portions?

September 12, 2011

Iron Woman

Who had a good weekend? I did! It wasn’t the best ever, but no weekend is a “bad” weekend. Clemson sure could have played better, but let’s not get into that…

Go Tigers!

I had a relatively healthy Friday, but that went right out the window on Saturday. It could have been much worse, and I don’t feel guilty at all. Kev and I split quesadillas for snack/dinner while watching football, and we split this frozen pizza for a late dinner after the GA vs. USC game.

Beer n' Pizza

I don’t generally like thin pizzas or white pizzas, and this was both. However, we agreed that it was pretty darn good for the price.

Pizza may not be the healthiest option, but you know what is healthy? Iron. (Sweet transition, right?) I purchased lots of spinach, sprouts, salmon, and beef at the store Sunday, so it got me thinking about this vital nutrient.

Women’s Health Magazine said that iron eliminates free radicals from the body “and helps protect against heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.” Iron also strengthens your immune system and keeps your thyroid running smoothly.

Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, RD, an associate professor of nutrition at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, told Fitness Magazine, “Only heme iron — found in animal foods like beef, lamb, or poultry — is directly absorbed into the body… Vegetable iron isn’t absorbed as efficiently.”

Spinach Salad (Only Part of Dinner)

No matter your diet (carnivore, flexitarian, or vegetarian/vegan), you can boost absorption by consuming iron-rich foods along with Vitamin C. According to Fitness Magazine, calcium interferes with iron absorption. I guess fortified cereal doesn’t help so much with milk!

We should get 18 milligrams of iron per day, but that can be difficult – especially on a plant based diet. Up to 62 percent of women fail to meet the recommended minimum.

To check the iron levels in common foods, check out these handy lists from FitSugar and WebMD. A few of the listed entries are:

  • Half a cup of cooked chickpeas = 3.4 mg
  • Half a cup of steamed kale = 2 mg
  • 3 oz of steak = 4 mg
How was your weekend? Did you catch any great football games? Do you keep track of your iron intake?
September 8, 2011

I’m a Prep

I’m a total prepster.  I’m not saying this because I adore cardigans, cable-knit sweaters, and Lily Pulitzer dresses.

Cleo got in the way of my cable!

but I forgave her

I’m not even saying I’m a prep because I’m obsessed with all things nautical, think retrievers are the best dogs on Earth, and not-so-secretly idolize Martha Stewart.

His & Hers Sperry

Nope. I’m a prepster (prep-star?) because I prep everying!  I’m mainly into prepping lunch, and y’all know I’m the queen of leftovers.  Just check out my “veggie bowls” for examples.

I may not do it weekly, but on a regular basis, I make a big pot-o-goodies on Sunday with the sole intention of eating it for lunch all week at work.  I am motivated to do this because pre-packed lunches take less of my time in the morning, and they usually tastes pretty darn good.

Big Quinoa Bowl

Lean Cuisine and other frozen entrees aren’t expensive, but if cost is your thing, this is definitely cheaper This is also a great way to eat more natural foods.  Prepping lunch for the entire week is also waaaaay cheaper than eating out at a restaurant.  (All this obviously depends on your ingredients, but you get the idea.)

Divide & Conquer

Making your own Healthy Choice or Smart Ones-style meal probably tastes better too.  You can add whatever you want.  I happen to love quinoa and radishes.  You don’t usually see those in the frozen section!

I have to admit, sometimes you can flop… like I did Monday.  My dish is good, but it was supposed to have edamame that I forgot to add.  It was also supposed to have a wonderful kale puree.

the kale was pretty enough to put in a vase

Yeah, that didn’t turn out for me.  The bowl is actually really good without it though.  Just throw on a TBS of soy sauce, and you’re good to go!  This week’s bowl has a wee bit of kale, sweet white corn, zucchini, radishes, quinoa, 2 TBS balsamic dressing, and canned tuna (packed in water).  Yum!

Do you prep your food for the week, or do you make everything fresh to order? Or do you let Healthy Choice or nearby restaurants do the cooking (and cleaning!) for you?

PS: Last night’s book club was lovely!  We all met at a frozen yogurt shop, and you can read more about it on Caitlin’s post.

Frozen Yogurt with the Girls!

September 7, 2011

WIAW: Melon Baller

Sorry about yesterday’s bum post.  I guess that’s what happens when you’re in a bum mood.  Stupid hormones.  I digress…

I’m in a much better mood today.  We’re all one day closer to Friday.  My book club meets tonight.  And of course it’s What I Ate Wednesday time!  Woohoo!  Be sure to check out Peas & Crayons for other great meal ideas.  I stole this little ditty about Jack and Dianne WIAW from her site, and it helps explain why I love it:

What WIAW isn’t about
Comparison – Judgement – Restriction – Guilt
What WIAW is about
Celebrating one of the glorious things we all have in common: We all eat!
WIAW is about food and fun! It’s about making new friends, breaking out of a food rut, inspiring
yourself & others, embracing fruit & vegetables, finding new ways to eat your favorite foods, and so
much more ❤
Celebrate blogging. Celebrate Food. Celebrate Individuality.
[Cause over here, we like to party!]
Yesterday’s breakfast began with a rice cake, though I predict I’ll be having half an Eat.Think.Smile chewy bar before my other workouts this week.  I also had an Oikos plain, fat-free, organic Greek yogurt (mouthful) with almost a cup of raspberries and half a cup of Kashi GoLean cereal after my workout.
On Monday, I made a quinoa bowl with summer veggies that I plan to eat on all week.  I also threw in half a can of tuna (though I’ll be using a full can for other days this week).  This actually tasted much better than anticipated.  I’ll share more about this veggie bowl tomorrow.
Oh, I also had a few (okay… 10… exactly 10) raw almonds with lunch.
(Not Pictured) I ate a peach with a hard boiled egg for snack.  
loads of nutrients + a little fat + non-refined carbs + protein = perfection

Dinner was a simple dinner straight from the kids’ menu, but I don’t care.  It’s an organic chicken frank on a wheat bun with onions.  I assume I also had about 2 cups of cantaloupe.

As you can see, I do not have a melon baller.  But I’m loving this melon so much that I think I am actually a melon baller, if you will.  Eatin’ melon the flyyyyyy way… (You’re welcome.  You know you’re going to have this song in your head all day.)

I also had a hearty serving of all-natural peeb and some totally unnatural popcorn.  It was the last bag of the pack, so hopefully I’ll swing for something more natural next time!

Lastly (sorry… long post… too many saved words from the weekend?), I have not only been eating, but I’ve been eaten.  I have soooooo many verrrrrry itchy bug bites from the cookout this weekend.  It’s driving me bonkers!

What’s the best thing you’ve eaten lately?  Is that song in your head yet???

September 6, 2011

Mini Me n’ Mini Post

Hellooooo! I wish I could share loads of fun pics from the weekend, but I actually didn’t take many. I wish I could tell you all about my healthy weekend, but I failed in that arena as well. Lastly, I wish I was still home, but it’s back to the daily grind. Oh well – at least I had fun!

So what do I have for you? Tidbits from yesterday and a promise for a more enlightening post in the (hopefully-near) future. I also have a blog recap. In case you missed it…

Yesterday, I hit the gym in the morning before Kev and I got started on our housework. I followed my September workout and did leg curls and leg extensions as a superset. I also completed 40 minutes of moderate cardio. Austin Powers (the one with Mini Me) was on television, so that made cardio a bit more enjoyable.

Mini Mesource

I tried to “healthify” my evening by making a grilled veggie wrap, which consisted of eggplant, zucchini, homemade hummus, kalamata olives, and a Flatout wrap. This was the third eggplant wrap I made this weekend. I think I should lay off for a while!

Sadly, I left it on the grill a little too long. It’s an ugly pic, but I’m not so sure eggplant wraps could ever look attractive.

Leia, on the other hand, is always pretty!

She and I relaxed on the couch before I took a break for yet another treat (ice cream n’ granola). Yeah… ending the indulgent weekend on a healthy note didn’t work out so well for me.

Do you have a hard time staying on track on the weekends?

If you stay on track, do you have any tips for me??? 🙂

September 2, 2011

Fall for Friday

Is anyone else fall-crazy? I am usually bonkers by now, but I’ve had so much fun this summer that I haven’t paid fall much attention, which is probably a good thing for my sanity. Now that football season is upon us, I cannot help but think about awesome autumn.

I thought a fall-inspired post would make for a fun Friday read, so here are some autumn things that I adore.

1. I love squash. I can’t wait to bake/roast a delicious acorn squash again, and don’t even get me started on pumpkins!

Source: Image from Pinterest

2. Fall Foliage! I guess that’s a no-brainer, but they’re just so beautiful. Kevin and I enjoy fall getaways, and I’m already excited about this year’s adventure. It includes hiking!

3. Halloween décor makes me smile. Isn’t it fun to decorate and remember all those years of trick or treating?

Source: Image from Pinterest (I think it’s originally from BHG)

4. Pumpkin beers are on the shelves! Actually, my favorite seasonal beers are ales and Oktoberfests, but pumpkin brews sure are fun, aren’t they?

5. Last but not least, it’s time for some footbaaaaaaall! Bring on the grills, the tailgates, the beers, the first downs, and the orange!

Are you fanatical about fall? If so, what autumn awesomeness excites you the most?

By the way… last night’s dinner was truly a dinner of champions… champion beer drinkers, that is.

TJ’s Masala Veggie Burger (newly discovered product that I adore!) with a whole wheat pita, lettuce, and a Paulaner Hefe. So much flavor!

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