Friday, November 25, 2011

My Southern Husband

You wanna know why it's so hard for me to lose weight?

It's because I live with a man who deep fries everything!

Take today, for example, I wanted healthy fajitas with chicken, red and green peppers, and onions, but what does my southern husband do? He has to turn the my "healthy" meal into this:

Not only did he deep fry the fajita, but he put cheese, guacamole, and sour cream all over it.
You try "staying strong" when pure evil deliciousness is wafted your direction.

I'm betting the scale will not forgive me for my sins this week.

Stupid fajita.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Avoid the Turkey Hangover

Actually, I don't have a problem so much with turkey as I do with sweets. The holidays are terrible for my diet, because I literally have NO stop button for most holidays treats.

YOU: Most? Psh. Aren't you exaggerating?

ME: Ha. You'd think. But nope. I mean most.

YOU: Almond roca?
Come to mama. (This slice is likely 500 cals.)

ME: I'd eat a whole can.

YOU: Egg nog?

ME: I'd down a pint even though it gives me a stomach ache. No regrets.

YOU: Pecan pie?

ME: Are you kidding? Pecan pie is my Achilles heel. You could swap out mashed potatoes with a scoop of gooey pecan pie innards, and I wouldn't even bat an eye. In fact, I'd probably be too hypnotized to blink. I'm not kidding. I could suck a pecan pie filling from the shell like an oyster. If it were legal to marry a pecan pie, I'd become a pie-lygamist.

YOU: Candy canes?

ME: You win. I'm not a huge fan. It's like eating a tube of peppermint toothpaste.

Clearly the holidays and I are not on the best standing and it couldn't have come at a worse time. Seriously, I've got 8 lbs to lose (yep, I lost another pound!) and tomorrow is Thanksbinging. [Sigh.] Fortunately the lovely folks at REDBOOK anticipated my troubles and made sure to include some hints to avoid overeating this holiday season.

The first comes from Hungry girl's section of the November issue. She suggests eating a big breakfast and a small meal before dinner. Do not starve yourself before the big meal in hopes of saving room for all the goodies to come. (heh. Who does that? heh. heh.). Then she suggests that during dinner you "fill your plate with salad, white turkey meat, and veggies." [This is exactly what I usually do, except I love dark meat, despite the additional calories. But I don't eat stuffing, potatoes, sweet potatoes, rolls, or anything else carb-y on the table. Except for my grandmother's jello ribbon salad.]

Also, only have a small dessert. Hungry girls says if cravings come after all that, pop a mint. It'll take the sweet-tooth edge off and voila! you didn't binge! [This is the part where I struggle. Gulp.]

The next hint is from the tight-ab-ed trainer and health enthusiast, Jillian Michaels. Her 4 tips come from the October issue of REDBOOK.
I know how you feel, Santa, but at least you're not a turkey.
  1. Pick your days to splurge. The holidays don't really last months at a time, they are only 4 distinct days of the year: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas (or other holiday) and New Year's. When you narrow it down that way, it doesn't seem so hard to diet all season. 
  2. Schedule future workouts. Join workout class and stick to the schedule. [Personally, I don't think I need to do this, since I'm pretty dedicated to working out on my own. In fact this week, I've done the dreaded stair workout by Padma Lakshmi and a mountain climbing program on my treadmill. Also, I will be working out before tomorrow's big meal too.]
  3. Don't beat yourself up if you slip. She used the analogy of a flat tire. If you get a flat tire, do you get outta the car and slash the other 3? or do you change the 1 tire and get back on the road to your goal? I like her thinking. [I heart this analogy! So clever and true. I make break a rule here and there, but I'm not going to let these blunders turn into habits that will prevent me from reaching my goal.]
  4. Focus on the big picture. When cravings sneak up on you, remember what you really want in a body that is healthy and strong. You don't want to feel yucky all the time, so make choices that you help you feel better physically. [Can do!]
I am really glad for the help. I need to be reminded sometimes of my end goal, which, btw, has been extended by 2 weeks. "Whaaa?" you ask. I know I only gave myself a year to lose 21 lbs, and I intend to be dedicated to the end, but I'm giving myself until Jan. 12th to reach my goal?

Why the extension?

It just so happens that I am going to visit a friend from high school in Orlando on Jan. 12th, a friend I haven't seen in...dum dum dummm...nearly 13 years!! Seeing someone from high school after a journey like this a perfect ending to my year of diet/exercise boot camp, and it's kinda a big deal, so that's why I'm giving myself another 2 weeks to get down to 145 lbs. Only 8 more to go in 7 weeks. I have to lose a little more than a pound a week. Hopefully I can do it! Send your karma my way, b/c play time is over. This is it.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
I'm thankful for your support.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

How my treadmill inspires me this fall. 
This week I tried a few "Random Ways to Burn Fat" from a snippet of the Lazy Woman's Fitness page of the November issue of REDBOOK (p.80).

Here are the suggestions from Jennifer Cohen, author of No Gym Required and trainer from LA, and how many calories you would burn in 20-30 minutes.
  1. Rearrange your living room: 150 cals in 20min. (I rearranged my living room, but Rick did most of the heavy lifting so I'm not sure if that counted.)
  2. Pace while on a phone call: 80 cals in 25 min. (I can NEVER sit still when I'm on a phone call with a friend. ((Unless I'm interviewing someone for an article I'm working on. Then, I'm very focused.)) Usually, I'm picking up the kids' rooms or doing laundry.)
  3. Scrub the bathtub: 125 cals in 20 min. (I traded "bathtub" for "dishes" and I always dance when I'm doing dishes. Hey, I can generate some killer suds with my dance moves. The Bee Gees got nothing on me.)
  4. Blow-dry and style your hair: 90 cals in 30 min. (My hair would totally be fried if I blow-dried it for 30 min.)
  5. Give your hubby a massage after date night: 91 cals in 20 min. (Um, does it count if I let him give me one?)
    A closer look.
    Damn, Padma. Why do you look SO good! At least you inspire me.
 Also, I tried THE BETTER-THAN-NOTHING WORKOUT, which was pelvic lifts in bed. I did them on the floor at least 3 times this week (p. 80).

Additional workouts include:
  • Running on the treadmill 2 x this week. (Tues. and Thurs.)
  • Running stairs and alternating weight training (Sat.)
  • walking a mile during my lunch break (Monday)

I've eaten a few things that deserve frowny faces from my fans--things like pumpkin muffins, chocolate chip cookies, 1/4 of my son's pumpkin pie shake, a heaping helping of homemade spaghetti, a Jr. bacon cheeseburger from Wendy's, a few fries, a chicken soft taco from Dell Taco, and nachos. This is prolly why my scale still lingers over the 154 lbs. I honestly expected it to punish me more, but--phew--it didn't.
Steady 154 lbs. I'll take it.

On the plus side, (or rather, I'm changing the subject in order to forget about my food sins this week) I got my kid a hat from Lettilu for Christmas and I CAN'T wait for it to come! Here's what it looks like:
I ordered it in hot pink for my 7yo daughter. She loves Hello Kitty.

I wished she would've loved this one too, but alas, her eyes were all over that Hello Kitty hat.

I wish I could get my son to wear hats, b/c I'd have gotten this one too. It's like a baby Maverick.

Check out Lettilu's facebook page. There are some super cute crocheted hats, and maybe you can procrastinate working out check off somethings from your Christmas list. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Empanadas for dinner. Popcorn for dessert.

 This is the best recipe REDBOOK has ever advertised. (Well at least out of the one's I've tried.)
From Hungry Girl on p. 176.
 To make the filling, I put frozen chicken into a crock-pot, found a recipe for homemade BBQ sauce,  mixed it all together, and let it marinated it for 6-8 hrs. I had to tweak the sauce recipe a little. Instead of vinegar, I used raspberry vinaigrette dressing, which was AWESOME. Added a sweat fruity flavor to the sauce. And instead of Tabasco sauce, I added chili powder. Other ingredients include: mustard, ketchup, brown sugar, and pepper. Oh man, it was good! I'm salivating just writing about it.

Then I stuffed these crescents with the pulled chicken, and popped these in the oven for 10 minutes for the most delicious empanadas my mouth has ever known. (Although if my Aunt Rosie would mail me some of hers, I'd really have something to compare it to.)

And for dessert, REDBOOK suggests popcorn. Who am I to say no to the printed word?
Popcorn it is.

Happy dieting, peeps.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

There's something fishy going on.

And it isn't salmon.

It's tuna.

Lame joke? Ah well. Gimme a break. It's 10:12pm on a day I managed to get my kid ready for school, finish a deadline, work-out, shower, get my other kid ready, take my laptop to tech services, run to the grocery store, dodge construction zones, babysit, bake pumpkin muffins, do dishes, pick my kid up from school, vote, pick up my laptop from tech services, get gas, pick up my husband from work, make dinner, get reacquainted with computer (which has been damaged for a week. There may have been dramatic smooching involved. A lady never kisses and tells.), work on a lesson plan, read the funniest Bloggess blog post on planet earth (On that note, an earth in which mice dressed as Hamlet and pillow menus can co-exist is a world I'm happy to live in) and blog.

Anyway, the tuna joke that we already established as BAD, relates to dinner, which was GOOD. I tried out a REDBOOK recipe from the November issue. It was something that Hungry Girl suggested on p. 176, a healthy tuna-stuffed red pepper for a quick low-cal, high-protein meal.

I don't really know why I picked this one to try, because:
a) I'm not a big fan of tuna.
b) I'm even less a fan of peppers, unless they're grilled alongside some spicy strips of steak. Yum-ME. (By admitting that, do I break some kind of dieter's Cardinal rule? Ah well. You all know how many times I've gone to confession over this stuff. I'm not even going to start to tell you how much candy I stole from my kids ate. Let's just say Nestle prolly had its version of "Black Friday" based on my consumption alone.)
We were all inspired by Joss Whedon. (I'm Jane Austen, so I guess technically she inspired him.)

Encinderarme Zurgeouso! (or something)

Where was I?

Right. Tuna.
The REDBOOK recipe I tried.

So I tried the recipe with some tweaks. I mixed the tuna with Vadelia Onion salad dressing, some carrots from my garden, and used green peppers instead of red, but only b/c they were out of red ones at the grocery store. Also, I topped it with cheese. I figured the calories per stuffed pepper was close to 200. I would totally make it again too.

They were better than Indiana Jones.
The downside: The kids touched their food about as much as a Nazi descendant would hug the Arc of the Covenant. And Rick. I dunno. He gave me that "I liked it, but I'm still full from lunch" line, which if you have a Rick Babel fish, you know means, "I'm not eating anything encased in a vegetable". Seriously, I could serve a Turducken, but if it were placed in say...a hollowed-out pumpkin, Rick wouldn't touch it with BBQ tongs.

The jury's not out with me though. I loved it. Good job Hungry Girl. And I'll be making your "World's Easiest Chicken Empanadas" very soon!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

7 months later, my birthday wish came true.

Guess who's wearing size 8 jeans? 


Yep. I went shopping yesterday and tried on 5 items of size 8 clothing and they ALL fit! To be fair there were a few brands that only fit in the size 10, but still! I even bought a pair of size 8 jeans. Do you know what this means? It means that my ass fits into a single digit pant size! WHAT! [fist bump] 

On my birthday in May, I wished I could be a size 8. The wish finally came true!
I'll put photos up soon, unfortunately, I lost my card reader again. My little gremlin son steals my electronic stuff all the friggin' time and uses them as accessories to his action figures. It's cute (and annoying when I can't find what I need.)

Scale update: 154 still. 
Workout update: This week I worked out 5 times, most of which burned about 350-370 calories.
  1. MON: Ran on my treadmill for 30 minutes at a 4mph with a 7.0 incline.
  2. TUES: none
  3. WED: Ran on my treadmill for 30 min. at a 4mph with a 7.0 incline.
  4. THURS: walked a mile on my lunch hour.
  5. FRI: Ran on my treadmill for 30 minutes at a 4mph with a 10.0 incline.
  6. SAT: Ran on my treadmill for 30 minutes at a 6mph with a 6.0 incline.
 Plan this week:

Well there's not much in the November issue of REDBOOK as far as exercise, but there's a bunch of great low-cal recipes and ways to avoid putting on the lbs. during "Stuff-your-face-until-your-pants-don't-fit"/Thanksgiving Day.

I plan on trying out some of those recipes, like Tuna-Stuffed Peppers and World's Easiest Chicken Empanadas (176). I'm going shopping later, and I'll be let you know how the recipes turn out. 
Stay tuned!
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