Trackin’ Trials

Well, today is day two of healthier choices, and of course I had to torment myself by jumping on the scale.  I know weight doesn’t change overnight.  Crimeny, it can be a pound a week or less , so who am I to be all antsy to see what the verdict is?  My scale didn’t budget, little bastard.  177.0 , but you know what?  I’ve been here before, I’ve been HIGHER and I was able to get down lower than this, so I know I can do it again.

So far, healthy choices today are going good.  One exact measured serving of oatmeal and a glass of Trop50 for breakfast (yes with brownsugar on the oatmeal, need to find a way to ditch that…anyone ever tried Splenda’s brown sugar?).  Lunch will be in about an hour and depending on where we go I’ll be doing a salad of some sort or a wheat/whole-wheat bread sandwich.

Dinner tonight will be chicken fajitas on low carb tortillas, this is seriously one of my favorite things to cook because it has soo many veggies in it and it is to die for.

Well, I suppose that’s all I got for now, hoping my WordAds end up posting sometime soon, ‘mama needs more diet foods’ and all that! 😉

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Breakfast for Dinner

Tonight we got home from the gym and made breakfast for dinner.  Why do I like this meal so much? Because it is totally full of PROTEIN.  Two eggs over easy, 5 slices (yes 5) of turkey bacon skillet cooked to perfection, one cup of Trop50 orange juice, a slice of toast and a small pancake.

Do I feel like I splurged on the pancake and toast?  Yes, a little.  However, this meal was 50 times better than McDonalds, healthwise, and I am feeling like a million bucks!

I had oatmeal (actual rolled oats) this morning for breakfast, with just some cinnamon, vanilla and a tsp of brown sugar and some milk.  It managed to keep me full almost until lunch.  I’ll be trying that out again tomorrow to see how it goes.

Today’s weight: 177.0 , let’s see what tomorrow has to bring.

Gym’in it

I jumped on the scale this morning; 177.0 LBS.  That means I’ve regained 16.8 pounds since August 2nd.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not beating myself up “too” bad, as it’s been nearly 4 months to regain half the weight I lost, but it’s enough to give me a wake up call.

My husband and I went to check out a local gym which is paired with a hospital here: Avera Fitness Center.  The facility looks brand spanking new and has tons of machines, group activities and two pools (regulation size and a theraputic heated pool).  Their locker rooms are amazing, with whirlpools, combs, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, lotion, deodorant and blow dryers and extremely knowledgable staff.

They gave us a 3-day pass to try it out, we’re going tonight after work.  Our theory is this: get home, let the dogs out, get out stuff, hit the gym, come home, shower, make dinner.   Three to four nights each week.

What does this mean for me?  It means I can start exercising in a facility that is so beautiful that I don’t really feel like it’s some ho-hum gym.  They have classes starting at about 5:30AM and they go until after 6:30 (latest one starts at 6:50PM).  They are open on the weekends and are close to our house.

Why am I rambling so much about a gym?  Because I’m trying to get pumped up for it.

Fast Forward 8 hours from when I started this post.

I’ve been to the gym, walked 1/2 a mile around the track, did 25 leg presses (sadly to say only at 150 lbs, I weigh 177…sooo…I cannot leg press my own weight), 15 crunch thingies and then 5 minutes on a stairmaster and 10 minutes on a treadmill at 3.5 mph 1.5 incline.

It took me about 45 minutes to do it all, said and done with getting showered afterwards, and I am feeling GREAT!  I’m taking it easy at the gym, hopefully this will help me get the habit of going there first, then look at making it tougher.

I’m taking tomorrow off from exercise, but will be back Friday night.

Shop Healthier

So, my husband and I are getting ready to get in shape, other than round at least. With that in mind, I decided it’s time to get some groceries, and as I start making my list, I realized something.  I have no idea what to stock in my cupboards and fridge to promote me to eat healthier.

Sure, it’s one thing to have boxes of Wonderslim lining my shelves (which admittedly, I’ve done), but it is quite another to learn to shop and more importantly, maintain having normal food for once I’m out of the phases.

So, here is my grocery list.  It’s dynamic so it’ll be changing, probably frequently, as I learn additional things to add to my list, and why it makes it easier.

Fridge


  • Bottled Water – why bottled?  Because I am THAT lazy that I will not fill a glass with water when I can grab a can of soda from the fridge.  This will get around that.
  • Reduced Sugar Jelly
  • Reduced Sugar Ketchup (yes really)
  • Fat Free Cheese (or Low Fat) in preportioned snack sizes/slices
  • Eggs
  • Turkey Bacon (try it, it’s actually really good)
  • Skim Milk
  • Turkey-Hot Dogs
  • Pickles (snack and reduce cravings/hunger)
  • Fresh Fruit (I’m thinking Bananas, Kiwi, Strawberries, Apples and Oranges in particular)
  • Juice – 100% juices (not from concentrate)
  • Fresh Veggies (Broccoli, Cauliflower, green beans, salad fixin’s, cucumber, zucchini)
  • Tortillas (keep them in the fridge to keep them moist) – Low Carb is ideal for me, or low fat.  The low carb tortillas actually taste pretty great and are a great alternative to some of the higher carb bread out there.
  • Butter (Land o’ Lakes with Olive Oil and Sea Salt)

Pantry


Note: I’d like to point out that my pantry consists of this: A bread box, a lazy Susan, three “tall” cupboards (two of which are super narrow) and the tiny cupboards above my sink and stove. Yes, I have a total of 8 cupboards (doors) for all of my pantry food. I can’t even begin to tell you how small the space is. So, with that in mind, my shopping list for my pantry will be a little shorter, although I’ll have my “dream list” on there as well.

  • Whole Wheat Pastas/Grains (high-fiber Ronzoni Healthy Harvest Whole Wheat Blend Pasta or Barilla Plus, which has extra protein and omega-3 fatty acids.)
  • Whole Grain Bread (2g Fiber or more.  Sara Lee makes a line of “Simply” breads that are crazy high in fiber and low in carb).
  • Reduced-fat salad dressing. (Obviously this gets refrigerated after opening) stock up on Fat Free or Low Fat Ranch (Fat Free tends to taste like crud so I go with Low Fat)
  • Applesauce-Unsweetened
  • Pudding Cups-Sugar Free (for the moment of weakness)
  • Dried or canned beans. Black beans, and fat-free refried beans are rich in protein.
  • Brown Rice (way better for you than white rice, unfortunately)
  • Salmon and light tuna for salads and sandwiches.
  • Peanut Butter (and other Nut Butters in general) – “Simple” or “Low Sugar” varieties.  Jif makes “Simply Jif” which has way less sugar and fewer ingredients and still tastes great.
  • Jarred pasta sauce. Add extra veggies like shredded zucchini.
  • Canned fruit and vegetables
  • Canned soup (low sodium / low fat ideally)
  • Salsa

Freezer


  • Frozen Lean Beef (93/7)
  • Frozen Chicken Breasts (buy in packages of 8, freeze in sets of 2)
  • Frozen Chicken Thighs (higher in fat but great for crockpot recipes)
  • Frozen Pre-packaged fish (tilapia is my favorite) and shrimp (great for a snack)
  • Frozen vegetables (you can get tri-colored peppers for about $2 for a bag of them, great in a pinch if you want to stir-fry)

Thanksgiving Recipes for Ideal Protein!

Well, I should have probably posted this yesterday…or before…my bad.  Oh well, here we go!  Thanksgiving Recipes that aren’t completely in the red for Ideal Protein!

Thanks to Beingmyidealmewuv2blovedLizRRIntheEveningBeck81, and sahmmommy2 from 3fatchicks.com for the following recipe contributions:

Side Dish:

Mashed “Potatoes”:

1 head of fresh cauliflower
Onion powder
Garlic powder
REALSALT (Sea salt), to taste
½ – 1 packet of Ideal Protein Leek soup or Ideal Protein Chicken soup
Optional: Wasabi Powder (to taste – gives it a zing!)
Optional: 1-2 tsp. UDO’s Oil or Olive Oil
Steam (preferred) or boil the cauliflower until it is very, very soft. Drain the water (if boiled). Add the seasonings (be creative) and add ½ -1 packet of any of the soup mixes (to taste). Add UDO’s or Olive Oil and mash well – serve steaming hot

Mashed “Fauxtatoes”

Roasted Cauliflower, Celery, & Garlic Puree

——————————————————————————–
1 head Cauliflower
4 ribs Celery
4-6 cloves Garlic
EVOO
Spices (sea salt, pepper, paprika, cumin, etc)
1c Chicken Broth

Preheat oven to 350degrees
1. Rough chop the Cauliflower florets, chop the stems more fine, and chop the Celery in ~2″ pieces, leave the garlic in the shell (they will roast inside themselves)
2. Place veggies on cookie sheet, spray with EVOO, sprinkle with spices
3. Roast for ~30minutes until the cauliflower florets start to brown
4. Blend veggies with ~1 cup Chicken Broth and additional spices to taste

*Otherwise known as Mashed ‘Fauxtatoes’
*I add this as a soup thickener A LOT – makes it a very hearty, thick bowl!
*Also, I’ve added this to the IP Potato Puree with some chopped veggies for ‘Baked Croquettes’
*The celery adds a light/no flavor to this puree, you can omit if desired – I add it for a lighter touch of veggies to the ‘carbier’ cauliflower


GRAVY

Braised Celery, Mushroom, & Garlic Puree
——————————————————————————–
1 lb mushrooms
4 ribs celery
4 cloves garlic
EVOO
Spices – sea salt, black pepper, thyme, rosemary, sage, etc.
Chicken Broth1. Lightly spray a sautee pan with EVOO
1. Chop celery in thin slices, place in sautee pan, cooking at medium heat ~5-8 minutes until they start turning transclucent
2. While the celery is sauteeing, wash & thinly slice the mushrooms, add to the sautee pan
3. Dice the garlic, add to the pan, and allow to brown slightly while adding your spices to taste
4. Add Chicken Broth to just barely cover vegetables and allow to simmer over low heat ~10 minutes
5. Pour into a blender and puree until smooth, add spices to taste*I use this as ‘gravy’ over my meat as well as a soup thickener.
*Recently I roasted a turkey and after chilling and skimming the fat from the pan drippings I added this puree and everyone

SAUCE / GRAVY

Pour 6.5 oz. (200 ml) of hot (not boiling) water into a bowl. Add one packet of Ideal Protein Chicken Soup or Leek Soup and mix with a mixer or hand mixer. Serve over vegetables and/or meat.
Add more or less water depending on how thick you prefer the sauce.


STUFFING

Ingredients:
2 cups of your favorite vegetables chopped up in food processor
½ cup of diced mushrooms
3 egg whites
1 tsp Poultry Seasoning
1 tsp Redmond’s Real Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
8 – 16 oz water
1 -2 TBS Braggs
IP packets:
1 – Chicken Soup
1 – Oatmeal
Optional 1 – Garlic and Onion Soy Nuts
Optional Seasoning:
Rosemary, Basil, Thyme and/or Garlic

Prepare Oatmeal Biscuits (Page 69 – Volume 2 Ideal Protein Healthy Recipes):
Beat 1 egg white then stir the IP Oatmeal packet until mixed thoroughly. Add 2oz. water until batter is thin and spoon able – but not runny. You may want to add a tsp of poultry seasoning or other seasoning of your choice. Spoon batter onto a non-stick baking sheet and bake at 400 for about 10 min. or until golden brown. Once biscuits are cooled tear up and let dry out an hour or two.
In a mixing bowl put dried oatmeal biscuits, seasonings, chopped veggies, mushrooms and Braggs. (if desired, add your IP soy nuts) Mix and set aside. In your blender bottle or other mixer, mix 8 oz of water with your IP Chicken Soup mix well (more water maybe needed). Add two egg whites to soup mix. Mix well then pour over veggie/biscuit mix stir (should be a moist mixture) and then place in an olive oil sprayed casserole dish. Cook about 20 min at 350.

STUFFING

Ingredients:
2 cups of your favorite vegetables chopped up in food processor
½ cup of diced mushrooms
3 egg whites
1 tsp Poultry Seasoning
1 tsp Redmond’s Real Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
8 – 16 oz water
1 -2 TBS Braggs
IP packets:
1 – Chicken Soup
1 – Oatmeal
Optional 1 – Garlic and Onion Soy Nuts
Optional Seasoning:
Rosemary, Basil, Thyme and/or Garlic

Prepare Oatmeal Biscuits (Page 69 – Volume 2 Ideal Protein Healthy Recipes):
Beat 1 egg white then stir the IP Oatmeal packet until mixed thoroughly. Add 2oz. water until batter is thin and spoon able – but not runny. You may want to add a tsp of poultry seasoning or other seasoning of your choice. Spoon batter onto a non-stick baking sheet and bake at 400 for about 10 min. or until golden brown. Once biscuits are cooled tear up and let dry out an hour or two.
In a mixing bowl put dried oatmeal biscuits, seasonings, chopped veggies, mushrooms and Braggs. (if desired, add your IP soy nuts) Mix and set aside. In your blender bottle or other mixer, mix 8 oz of water with your IP Chicken Soup mix well (more water maybe needed). Add two egg whites to soup mix. Mix well then pour over veggie/biscuit mix stir (should be a moist mixture) and then place in an olive oil sprayed casserole dish. Cook about 20 min at 350.


“Cranberry” Jelly

Rhubarb Jam
——————————————————————————–
1 bag frozen Rhubarb ~4c chopped (or fresh when in season)
2 tbsp WF Strawberry Spread
1 envelope Knox Unflavored Gelatin
1 cup Water

1. Place frozen Rhubarb in microwave safe bowl and microwave for 5 minutes.
2. Stir with fork, add 2 tbsp WF Strawberry Spread, Knox Gelatin, 1 cup water.
3. Microwave an additional 2 minutes, mash with fork/blend with immersion/puree in blender/etc until desired consistency. Add additional WF Strawberry Spread if desired.
4. Let set in the fridge.

*I always have a bowl of this in the fridge for ‘sweet tooth emergencies’ – it is a PERFECT fruit fix!
*The gelatin gives it a ‘jelly’ texture and a collagen boost as well – great for the skin!
*One envelope Knox Unflavored Gelatin adds ~24 calories from 6g protein

*This can be added to puddings, smoothies, IP ice cream, Crispy Cereal Pancakes, Waffles – anywhere where a fruit addition would be appropriate

Cranberry Relish:

FYI – Cranberries are technically not Phase 1 approved but tis the season and can be used for that special holiday “Day”.
Ingredients:
1 cup water
1 cup fresh whole cranberries
4 celery sticks chopped
½ cup chives chopped
½ cup chopped zucchini
6 mint leafs
1 tsp Orange zest
1 IP Raspberry Jello packet
3 tsp Walden Farms Raspberry Jelly
1 tsp Xylitol
Boil the cranberries in the 1 cup of water for about 5 min. Pour the water off into a cup should be about 5 oz. of liquid and still warm. Put the IP Raspberry Jelly Packet into it and mix well. Pour into a bowl and put in the ice box to setup.
Chop together cranberries, celery, chives, zucchini, mint leafs and orange zest chop in a food processor or by hand. Mix in with Xylitol and Walden Farms Raspberry Jelly into the Jelly mix cooling in the ice box add the cranberries and the vegetables and mix together.
Let cool in bowl and then serve with celery sticks or flax seed crackers.

Left Over Turkey Soup (great for all phases)

Ingredients
2 quarts low sodium chicken broth
1 turkey carcass, all meat removed
1 onion, halved, plus 1 onion, minced (phase 4 only)
1 carrot, halved lengthwise, plus 1 carrot, minced (phase 4 only)
1 whole stalk celery, plus 1 more stalk, minced
2 bay leaves3 cups dark turkey meat
2 garlic cloves, smashed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 carrot, minced (phase 4 only)
1 stalk celery, minced
3 cups leftover cooked Thanksgiving side vegetables (Brussels sprouts, turnip, green beans)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves

Directions
Put chicken broth, turkey, onion halves, carrot halves, one celery stalk, and one bay leaf in a large stock pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer about 1 1/2 hours. Finely dice the remaining onion, carrot and celery and reserve.
Dice the turkey meat. Make sure meat pieces are no larger than the size of a soup spoon. (If preparing soup the next day, be sure to store leftover turkey meat in an airtight container before placing it in the refrigerator, top with one or two ladles full of broth to keep meat moist.)
Before straining broth, remove large bones and carcass with tongs. Strain the broth through a sieve, covered with wet cheese cloth. Discard the solids. Transfer broth to a bowl set in a bath of ice water, which will cool the broth quickly and help keep it fresher longer. This can be done the night before and stored in the refrigerator until the next day.
In a large soup pot, heat garlic cloves in the olive oil. Allow to brown slightly and add minced carrots, celery, and onion. Sweat over medium-low heat until softened, about seven or eight minutes.
Dice the leftover vegetables (here Brussels sprouts,Turnip and green beans). Add the chopped sage to the soup pot along with the turkey broth and the remaining bay leaf. Bring to a simmer. When simmering, add Brussels sprouts, green beans and diced turkey meat to the soup. Bring it back up to a simmer. Finally, add the turnip to the center, and gently push them down. Turn the heat off and cover. Allow to sit and steam for five to seven minutes.
Let simmer for five more minutes and serve.