Monday Mantra: Go Veggie For A Day

I first want to show you the torture I went through today at Costco on my lunch break. Apparently everyone has quit their job and they just go shopping every day, specifically at Costco.

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It was a madhouse today, people were in such a rush and most of them very rude. Remember the purpose of Christmas is to spread joy, kindness, and to let me get my groceries in peace. Want a peak in my basket? Yes those are chicken fingers. I make sure to always have something quick on hand when I need something on the run to avoid takeout and these ones are the best kind made with actual chicken breast. Other then that in my basket is Greek yogurt (2 kinds), roasted red pepper hummus, chicken breasts, chicken wings, bell peppers, bananas, margarine, cliff bars, coffee, parchment paper, paper towel, and aluminum foil. I stocked up because after today Costco will not be seeing me until January.

 

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So as an update on last week it went really well. I became involved in What I Ate Wednesday and it was a great addition to my involvement in the blog community. I loved reading everyone’s posts and seeing comments from those that read mine. I received a ton of traffic because of it and it really helped me feel like even more part of the community so it was a success. If anyone has any other suggestions for blog marketing / networking or has written any posts on it please let me know! I have something else in the works as well that hopefully I will share with you soon.

 

Monday Tuesday Mantra: Go Veggie For A Day

I have always wanted to challenge my eating habits by going vegetarian for a week. I think that’s probably a little too much to take on right now so I will commit to trying it out for a day and reporting back not only what I eat but how I felt and how my workout went. My inspiration for this Mantra was from A Dash of Meg’s Meatless Monday, her meatless meals always look so delish! I am thinking I will try it out either Thursday or Monday. Just as a side note I don’t think I will ever go fully vegetarian, just wanted to try challenging my eating habits, who couldn’t use more fruits and veggies in their diet! Smile

 

Are you a vegetarian or have you ever tried it out? Any recipes you’d like to share?

As always share your Monday Mantras with me! 

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Monday Mantra: Blog Research

First an update on last week. I definitely surpassed my veggie/fruit goal! I tracked it every night and most days ate at least 6 – 7 servings of veggies/fruits. I am back in the healthy eating mode after staycation and it should stick around until the Holidays. Which is when I am sure it will all go to hell. haha Such is life. Speaking of the holidays my Christmas shopping is officially started. In previous years I was a last minute girl. This year I have decided I am going out lunch time 3 days a week and getting at least one gift. It’s Tuesday and so far I have 2 gifts and all my Christmas cards. Success! I have my Christmas shopping list on my iPad and there is nothing more satisfying the checking something off everyday! More on the holidays in the upcoming week as I have some special holiday posts planned!

 

Monday Tuesday Mantra: Blog Research

I had a hard time coming up with a mantra this week. I have a paper due tomorrow, I’m tired, and I have a 47 minute run planned for tomorrow when the sun comes up. But I thought about it and realized I have been slacking lately on being current on blog trends, advertising, and anything related. My blog is a big part of my balance in life because it’s fun for me and a great way to reflect and relax so this week I will give it some attention as well as clean out my Google reader!

 

As always I’d love to hear your goals for the week!

I would like some mantra suggestions, only rule is they need to be related to finding the balance in life and healthy living!

If you are a blogger and reading this comment so I can add you to my Google reader! How do you market your blog?

Me For A Day

I should preface this with the statement that this will never be a blog where  I track every morsel that crosses my lips in photos and post about it. While I am fascinated by those blogs (Carrots ‘N’ Cake and Healthy Tipping Point) I just don’t have the time. They blog full time and I have a full-time job I love that’s not blogging so it’s just never going to happen! However, I thought it would be fun to try it out for one day just to give you an idea of what I eat regularly and to give you a glimpse of my day. Though it varies from day to day I tend to eat the same 5 or 6 things for breakfast, lunch, and snacks but dinner is where I try and get creative!

 

I usually do my cardio workout in the morning but I absolutely have to eat beforehand or I will hit the wall so to speak. Generally, I eat a combination of carbs and protein either oatmeal, oat bran, baked oatmeal (all with natural peanut butter), an egg white sandwich, or if I am rushing a bowel of Kashi with soy milk and a banana! I sometimes like to get creative with my oatmeal and oat bran flavours. Today I had banana oat bran with natural pb. The first thing I do every morning is eat and check my email and read blogs while eating.

 

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After I eat it’s off for a run today, it was a gorgeous day out! My run should have been great but due not eating enough in the evening the day before I suspect, I felt like I was all out of energy. I find what you eat the day before has a big impact on performance. Lesson learned, make sure to get enough dinner! Just look at that sunrise! I did 3.2 miles in 35:17 which for me is slow. My splits that day were:

Mile 1: 10:30

Mile 2: 10:02

Mile 3: 11:22 (I was dying at this point)

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After working out I  try to eat something, generally a smoothie if I have time, but on this particular day my run was so awful and the thought of food made me sick to even think about. So I headed to work, drinking a coffee with soymilk on the way. I usually end up having a snack around midmorning or earlier depending on how hard the morning workout was. Usually I have fruit, a Cliff Bar, or a Greek yogurt. Today I had a Greek yogurt.

 

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Lunchtime is either leftovers, a sandwich of various combinations of lean protein and veggies, a salad or if I am in a rush an Amy’s organic burrito that I keep on hand in the freezer. I usually also have veggies and hummus with lunch and a piece of dark chocolate which I love! I also have a coffee afterwards. Today’s lunch was a sandwich (on a multigrain bun, turkey, tomato, spinach. monterey jack cheese, hummus, and pickle) with carrots and hummus. No picture because I forgot that I was tracking my food that day, I would be the worst daily food blogger ever! haha I’ll let you just imagine how good it was!

 

Sometimes I snack in the afternoon and sometimes I don’t it really depends if I am working out after work (if I miss the morning) or if I am heading to do workout 2 of the day Body Pump, yoga, or swimming! If I do snack in the afternoon it is usually carbs in the form of whole grain crackers and natural nut butter or a Cliff Bar and always a black coffee. Today I didn’t snack but we were treated to lattes at work, I had a gingerbread latte, soy, no whip!

 

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Dinner is where I really get creative and I could cook anything the only rules are I try to make it healthy and filling by using lean protein, lots of veggies, a little healthy fat, and whole grains! Today I made Italian Mac and Cheese and it was so good! I swapped the half and half for soy milk obviously and used light cheddar cheese. I also added in some hot Italian sausage! It was amazing. I had roasted balsamic asparagus on the side.

 

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Roasted Balsamic Asparagus (Serves 2)

  • 12 spears asparagus
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper

 

Cut woody ends off asparagus and toss in vinegar and season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread out on cookie sheet and roast at 275 degrees for 25 minutes flipping half way.

 

After dinner I usually have green tea and if I have something homemade baked on hand like muffins or banana or pumpkin bread I have some of that! I baked Mama Pea’s chocolate chip zucchini bread from her cookbook and it was delish! I used soy milk instead of oil and reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup. It was seriously good!

 

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I try not to snack in the evenings but I do it’s usually baked pita chips and hummus/salsa, or if I am not trying to be healthy kettle chips or nachos! 

 

So this is generally the way my eating goes on a day to day basis the only difference being that on the weekends I tend not to eat lunch and have a green monster instead with frozen fruit, spinach, chia seeds, and Greek yogurt. If I had time to make a green monster everyday if I had a good blender that didn’t take forever I totally would. I try to have them occasionally throughout the week when I have time.

 

Overall I am a firm believer in eating REAL food, I don’t believe in dieting or special meal replacements. I think that if you practice moderation, good portion sizes, and eat well 90% of the time then that is the key to loosing weight and maintaining it.

 

What do you eat in the run of a day? I would love to see more posts like this!

Any favourite recipes to share?

How I Define Healthy Eating

I have had a few conversations lately about nutrition and I thought it might be interesting to share some of my thoughts here. I come from a family where there is no easy way out in anything, this is true of life, money, and weight loss. I lost over 20 pounds in the last year the hard way – eating healthy and exercising. Here are a few things that worked for me (I’m no expert – just sharing my experience).

 

1. Eat real food. This one is number one for a good reason, diet chips and 100 calorie packs are big corporation’s way to market and make millions off people thinking they are eating healthy. You eat this crap and 30 minutes later you’re hungry…it just doesn’t work. Real food like organic produce, lean meat, whole grains, and dairy are what keeps you healthy and fuelled. If it has 25 ingredients it’s probably a bad idea, if it comes from the outside square section of the grocery store you’re probably good to go. Full disclosure in case someone sees me in public – I have a diet coke once in a while. It is my guilty pleasure and I will fight you if you try and take it from me. I’m not perfect, which leads me to my second tip.

 

2. Healthy 90% splurge 10%. If you are going to splurge you should enjoy it and the only way you can do that is if you know your next choice will be healthy. I have a love of wine and dark chocolate. I eat very healthy 90% of the time but with a few exceptions. If I want to have a few glasses of wine on the weekend I am going to. I eat a piece of dark chocolate everyday and savour every bite. Finally, if I go to a restaurant I eat what I want and I enjoy it. I eat out so little paired with the fact that when I do it’s normally not to a chain restaurant, rather somewhere local and geared towards a quality dining experience. If I am paying good money to eat somewhere, I enjoy every second.

 

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3. Drop the guilt. It does you and everyone around you no good if your constantly worried about your eating. Life is for living and when you splurge a little more then usual embrace it and move on. This life is too short then to be anything but happy so enjoy the ice cream and go for a run in the sunshine tomorrow, you’ll be glad you did.

 

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4. Listen to your body. I watch my portion sizes but if I am hungry I eat and when I am full I stop. Sounds easy enough but if you listen to the signals your body is giving you then you should naturally know when to stop eating. Paying attention to your food while eating and trying not to watch television or check email (we’re all guilty) is the key to accomplishing this. If I am craving salt I probably didn’t replenish my salt loss enough after working out. Listening to your body will help you know what your body needs and what it doesn’t.

 

5. The word diet doesn’t exist, living healthy is a choice. I never have a mindset of I’m on a diet because the word diet inherently triggers thoughts of restriction and that doesn’t fly well with my eating habits at all. Over a year ago I made a choice to eat healthy, I chose healthy whole foods that I love over over processed junk. I chose being happy with my choices and not feeling guilty. I chose to fill my diet with lots of veggies, fruit, whole grains, lean meat, and some dairy. I watch my portion sizes and stop eating when I am full. I listen to my body, and try to give it what it needs. Healthy living is for life and the word diet has an end point. When it ends generally so does the weight loss. There is nothing temporary about making the choice to be healthy and forming the habits to create a long, healthy, and happy life!

 

How do you define healthy eating?

Anything you’d add to this list?

Monday Mantra: Eat 5

Last week’s mantra of enjoying a staycation went really well, I gave a recap yesterday. I truly took the time to relax, not worry, and enjoy every moment!  Today was our last day. I got up, worked out, and Bruce and I went shopping! We hit up Costco to get our normal groceries and I finally ordered my graduation picture prints for my mom. I also had thank-you cards printed to give out to family and friends for celebrating my graduation with me! I cannot wait to see how they turn out in-person but here is the proof.

 

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After that we headed to the mall where I got a new winter coat, took an old coat for alternations, got a new pair of pants and sweater, a cooling rack for baking, and placed an order for an engraved business card holder my mom wanted to get me for graduating. Currently my business cards are just tossed in my wallet so it will be nice to have a real holder for them! After that we came home, ate dinner, and relaxed. It was so nice to spend the day shopping together then relaxing! A great end to a great staycation!

 

Monday Mantra: Eat Five

As with any vacation I haven’t exactly eaten the best over the last few days. Late night munching, dinners out, and parties have ruined my normal healthy eating habits. Starting tomorrow my goal is at least 5 fruits and vegetables every day. While that is normal eating for me, I want to use this mantra to make sure I get back to my normal routine after a great vacation!

 

How do you get back into a routine after a vacation?

What are your 5 favourite fruits and veggies?