What's with the name?

What's with the name? In my mid-twenties, I had essentially gone through one kind of life and am starting to enter another. The people that are probably going to read this blog know exactly what I'm talking about - but for those who don't know, here's a brief rundown . Cheers to Chapter 2! A journey in health in many ways, and to be the best version of myself I can possibly be. I am also a blogger for GreenMommas.com. This is my blog.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Week 3 : 30 Day Photo Food Diary Challenge

I swear this challenge gets everyday. I think now I can see the changes happening to my waistline in the mirror. And this is a completely sustainable way of eating - more frequent, smaller meals so I'm never hungry. 

3 weeks completed - 13.5 lbs lost!

Day 15 Meals:
  • Eggs scrambled with peppers, scallions and a little cheese
  • Bananas with frozen berries (cranberries, blueberries) and mixed nuts
  • Shrimp and green beans - with red pepper flakes, salt, pepper, garlic
  • Pork chop and steamed broccoli, a little horseradish sour cream

Day 16 Meals:
  • Scrambled eggs with scallions, peppers and a little cheese
  • Watermelon & mixed nuts
  • Shrimp, carrots, kale sauteed
  • Skirt steak, steamed green beans

Day 17 Meals:
  • Omelette with bacon, onions, peppers, cheese and fresh spinach on the side
  • Mixed greens, peas, radishes, olives, sprouts and taco-spiced chicken on top
  • Almond buttercup smoothie : almond butter, almond milk, banana, vanilla pea protein, vanilla beans, flax seeds
  • Ahi tuna steak - seared. Bacon & brussel sprouts

Day 18 Meals:

  • Scrambled eggs with spinach, cheese, almonds
  • Lunch (forgot the photo!): Turkey breast, radishes, sprouts, cukes, mixed greens with cucumber vinaigrette
  • Fresh mixed berries & almond butter
  • Carrots & mixed nuts
  • Pork loin chop, steamed kale & green beans

Day 19 Meals:
  • Scrambled eggs, spinach & almonds
  • Pear melon smoothie (strawberries, pear, melon, blueberries)
  • Grilled chicken thigh, cukes, radishes, kale, olives, cauliflower 'smash' (with a little cheese)
  • Pork chop, garden salad

Day 20 Meals:

  • Scrambled eggs, almonds, spinach, a little cheese
  • Salad w/olives, Italian cucumber dressing, chick peas, small piece of gluten-free meat lasagna 
  • Dinner : Treat night! Gluten-free corn dog, slaw, baby kale Caesar salad

Day 21 Meals:

Scrambled eggs, spinach and bacon
Buffalo wings, roasted zucchini/squash and celery
Scallops and romaine salad 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Week 2 : 30 Day Photo Food Diary Challenge

I've tried a lot of new things this week. From Quinoa-stuffed peppers, to olives, shredded beets and smoothies with chia - variety seems to be what's keeping me going on this eating plan. And the weird thing is, I don't find myself missing those traditional carbs now (rice, potato). I have sustainable energy without them. The weight loss is also helping me stay committed too! In two weeks, I've lost 10 pounds, which is pretty incredible since I haven't lost anything in the 10 months prior.

This is a re-dedication to myself and nutrition. It reminds me if I want the numbers on the scale to change, I must change what I'm doing too. That said - I don't feel deprived. And I'll admit to having a little wine each night. The smoothies are almost indulgent - my little midday treat. 

Day 8 Meals:

  • Scrambled eggs w/spinach, orange pepper, onion and a little bit of shredded cheese
  • Green juice : spinach, lemon, orange, apple & superfood powder
  • Shrimp & snap peas w/salt, pepper, garlic and red pepper flakes
  • Carrots, mixed nuts and 'everything' hummus
  • Grilled thin-sliced pork w/horseradish sour cream & more snap peas with sea salt

Day 9 Meals:
  • Scrambled eggs, spinach, orange peppers, onions
  • Bananas w/frozen berries and mixed nuts
  • Shrimp, carrots, mixed nuts
  • Pork tenderloin (roasted in oven), quinoa-stuffed peppers (quinoa, mushrooms, spinach, carrots, onion)

Day 10 Meals (1/3 of the way through!):
  • Ham/swiss & broccoli omelette with fresh spinach on the side
  • Pork Provencal, radish sprouts, shredded beets, cukes, artichoke hearts
  • Raspberry Chia Peach smoothie : raspberries, peaches, chia seads, vanilla pea protein, dates, almond milk
  • Carrots & everything hummus
  • Lettuce wrap tacos - ground beef, homemade seasoning, onions, jalapenos, romaine lettuce

Day 11 Meals :
  • Scrambled eggs w/spinach, almonds and a little shredded cheese
  • Peach mango carrot smoothie
  • Chicken masala, cukes, shredded beets, radish sprouts, olives, curry-roasted cauliflower
  • Carrots & almonds
  • Pork chop, shrimp (both pan-seared), broccoli with Annie's organic Goddess dressing.

Day 12 Meals:
  • Bacon, spinach & feta omelette with extra spinach on the side
  • Peach, orange, coconut milk smoothie
  • Beef burger. Olives, cukes, yellow//red peppers, radish sprouts
  • Carrots and almonds
  • Skirt steak & salad

Day 13 Meals:
  • Scrambled eggs, spinach & almonds
  • Turkey, radishes, white bean & cucumber salad with fresh herbs
  • Protein smoothie: peanut butter, bananas, almond milk, cacoa nibs, vanilla pea protein
  • Scallops & shrimp. Steamed kale with balsamic dressing

Day 14 Meals:
  • Fiesta scrambled eggs with spinach, peppers and cheese
  • Banana with peanut butter 
  • Italian tapas night! Calamari woth pesto, sausage scaparilla, caprese salad 

Monday, June 9, 2014

30 Day Challange/Photo Food Diary : Week 1

One week down. 6.5lbs lost. This is working! Week one food recap below. Also accompanied by my usual workout routine - 2 long bike rides, 3 CrossFit classes and some time weeding in the garden. So psyched for next week!

Day 1 Meals

  • Scrambled eggs with spinach and (a tiny bit) of shredded cheddar
  • Banana
  • Ground pork burger with sweet peas
  • Carrots with spinach & artichoke hummus, almonds
  • Grilled sirloin steak, asparagus w/red peppers roasted in olive oil

Day 2 Meals
  • Scrambled eggs with onion, orange peppers and (a tiny bit) of shredded cheddar
  • Bananas, cranberries - sprinkled with flax seed
  • Spicy sauteed shrimp and green beans (olive oil, salt, pepper, chili powder, red pepper flakes)
  • Carrots with shrimp & artichoke hummus, almonds
  • Lettuce tacos - romaine, ground pork w/homemade seasoning (cayenne, chili powder, cumin, coriander, salt, corn starch), jalepenos, onion

Day 3 Meals
  • Omlette with egg, feta, spinach & arthichioke. Extra fresh spinach on the side
  • Bolthouse farms berry smoothie
  • Garden salad - lettuce, onion, carrots, turkey & bacon. Olive oil & balsamic for dressing
  • Carrots w/spinach artichoke hummus, almonds
  • Ground pork burger, natural hot dog & broccoli

Day 4 Meals
  • Scrambled eggs with almonds & spinach
  • Strawberry, pineapple, pear, coconut milk smoothie 
  • Salad with parsley vinaigrette, corn, peas, yellow peppers, cukes & chicken breast masala
  • Carrots and almonds
  • Tip steak, salad with spinach, romaine, onions and Annie's organic Goddess dressing

Day 5 Meals
  • Scrambled eggs with almond & spinach
  • Mint chip smoothie! Almond milk, spinach, raw honey, fresh mint, 100% cacoa chips MMMMM
  • Caesar salad with chicken, red pepper, cukes and sprouts
  • Carrots w/spinach & artichoke hummus
  • Shrimp and haddock with oven roasted brussel sprouts & bacon

Day 6 Meals
  • Scrambled eggs, spinach and almonds
  • BBQ chicken breast, raw veggies: broccoli, radish sprouts, peas
  • Almond butter smoothie from Eco Bean! Almond butter, almond milk, flax, vanilla pea protein, banana
  • Pork chop with a little horseradish sour cream & broccoli

Day 7 Meals
  • Scrambled eggs with a little cheese, onion, red pepper and spinach
  • Banana & peanut butter
  • Nuts about Acai protein smoothie. Acai protein, vanilla protein, strawberries, banana, blueberries, coconut milk
  • Chicken, salad and pizza slice! My one treat for the week

Thursday, May 29, 2014

30 Days of Food: A Photo Diary

Recent inquiries about my blog's status have led me to start it up again (thank Amanda!). It's a good time to start writing again. I just finished two races - the Corporate Cup 5k in Montpelier and running a leg in the Key Bank Vermont City Marathon (5.5 miles). These were both huge races, with the VCM being both the longest distance and largest race I've ever run. I had to train. 5K has been my running distance for the last year. Almost doubling this distance took some practice; about two months of runs working to increase my running distance and stamina. But I did it. I ran it with almost no walking (10 seconds on mile 4). I wouldn't have ever thought two years ago I could have run in the VCM. But I did. And that's a big accomplishment for me. Here's me coming up on the finish line, and one of the Corporate Cup:

So where am I, exactly? Well, It's been more than two years since the start of my health journey. Still down over 100 pounds, and my hair has fully grown out to it's natural color. I still make my own cleaning products, and try to eat very clean and organic. It's never over though. Honestly, the last year has been a fight to maintain my three-digit weight loss - and I have, because I am a fighter. It has been an exercise in patience over the last year to try and get those last 30 pounds off. Seeing the marathon photos reminded me that I'm not quite there yet. I've come so far - and now I'm in the last mile - and I'm not going to give up no matter how slow I have to go. The last year it's been damn near a turtle's pace.

I've been asking myself, what can I do to get to that next level? What can I do to start losing again? I should do a challenge. It should be tied to my 30th birthday (in July). I would love to be 15lbs lighter within the next two months, feeling great as I roll in to my thirties. So what can I do differently? I've been pretty committed with workouts. CrossFit three days a week. One run a week. One nice long bike ride a week (~14 miles). What can I get better at? Food. Yes food. That's always it for me. Small adjustments. But how to tie this to a goal? Then the answer came to me one day...err...appeared in my Instagram feed (thanks Palesa!). My aunt posted a photo of what she ate that day, in photo grid format. She's been through a health journey of her own, and now looks like (or is?) a fitness model. I'm inspired. This photo had me thinking - if I took a picture of what I ate every day, would I be proud of it? What would I do differently or adjust? And then the idea came - a photo food diary. Something new to me. I've been logging calories since the beginning of time (not really, but since there was an app for that), but never really looked at what I was eating everyday, all at once. Challenge, accepted!

Here are the rules for my 30 Days of food photo challenge:

  • I will post a photo grid on my blog for the next 30 days (the whole month of June)
  • I will be focused on eating clean, and eating a more plant-based diet (cutting down the meat)
  • I will properly fuel myself up before a workout 
  • I will post everything I eat - even if I'm not proud of it
  • I will strive to eat as many different colors of foods as I can. My grid should look like a darn rainbow!
  • I will not log calories or grams of this and that. Just strive to be proud of what my daily food intake looks like
I this will make me more accountable, because maybe I haven't been as good as I should be. I've been wanting to shift to a more plant-based diet for awhile, it's time to try and see if it moves the needle.

30 pounds to go, let's do this!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Spinning Wheels

It's January in VT. That means cold temps and snow, usually. This year it's meant inches of ice. And because I think its ridiculous to invest 500 bucks in studded snows, for me the ice means my wheels spin from time to time. I was thinking the other day that I could compare my drive in to work on an icy day to my health journey.

The trip takes about 20 minutes, 30 in bad weather - with the ice, my wheels spin a little out of the driveway, and sometimes a little bit when you hit an icy patch. My health journey is not unlike this. You get out the gate with some hardship (leaving from home), spin your wheels a bit, move forward, sometimes they spin again, but eventually if I keep a firm grip on the wheel, I'll get to where I'm going. It might take me longer because I'm cautious. I don't want to race through it.

Right now, I'm essentially spinning my wheels on ice. Meaning, it's been a solid six months since I've dropped a pound. Am I frustrated - yes, incredibly. I've been doing what I know to do to lose and it's just not happening. Sometimes a little voice in my head asks me what the point of it all is. But I know exactly how to answer. Just keep on the path, keep making small adjustments to see what works and what doesn't and eventually the wheels will stop spinning and get a good grip on the road. And I'll get to my destination.

That's the point. I have to keep going. There is no reason to give up. The answer will always be to keep going because I know that in time (hopefully soon), I'll be rewarded for my efforts.

With the scale battle aside, here's some cool things that have happened since my last post (I know it's been forever):

  • I was awarded the 'Life Earthing of the Year' by my peers at work for my commitment to health and for inspiring others.
  • I came in second place in the 'Fittest Earthling' competition - Women's Elite division.
  • I can deadlift 145lbs
  • I can clean 105lbs
  • In 2014 I lost 45lbs, bringing my total weight loss to a little over 105lbs!!

Here's some simple changes I'm making this month to work towards losing weight again:

  • Only one coffee a week. Tea on the other days
  • With meals, multiply my green veggie intake by 2, cut carb (rice, potato) intake by half
  • Limit dairy & gluten as much as I can

As an inspiration to keep moving myself further, pictures always help. Here's a two year review, what I looked like at the start of 2012, 2013 and 2014:

I also turn 30 this year, and this is my big motivator. I want to be in the best shape of my life when I hit the big 3-0 in July. Although I feel like I'm definitely the strongest I've ever been, I'm not the lightest I've ever been.

I'm taking on 2014 with new motivation and new steps to get to my goals!