Sunday, February 27, 2011

Day 54 ~ Yesterday was difficult

I was nibbly and munchy almost all day yesterday -- I was out of the house in the afternoon, which helped, but when I got home it was a big struggle.  I kept thinking about Jack in the Box tacos (not for human consumption but I LOVE THEM!)

So, for my own health reference ~ Nutrition Info for Jack in the Box Tacos (2):
Calories: 386
Calories from fat: 203
Total Fat: 22
Saturated: 6
Trans: 1
Cholesterol: 27 mg
Potassium: 406 mg
Sodium: 617 mg
Carbs: 34 g
Dietary Fiber: 3 g
Sugars: 5 g
Protein: 12 g

Here is the Nutritional Guide for Jack's, which has the ingredient list for all menu items... Tacos have quite a bit of soy, and MSG - which I don't have an issue with, but I'm hearing about links to obesity & autism with it in our foods. seems to be a site that has quite a bit of non-inflammatory information (if you know what I mean, the content and site design are not over the top).

Two hours later, I've read almost everything on the MSGTruthout site, and think it is well worth the time.

My new habit in May/June will be Square Foot Gardening... and when I'm done with MF, I'll be a juicer.

And I hadn't heard about Max Gerson and his cancer therapy through diet (nope, hadn't even heard about the coffee enemas...).  So on my viewing list: The Beautiful Truth and Dying To Have Known... just to see what that is all about. 
* * * * *

As someone who lives an "Ostrich" life (stick my head in the ground and ignore any danger and it goes away, right?), I believe that there is some truth to accusations made that the Mighty American Dollar (profits!) is the bottom line cause for so many issues ~ and that most of us don't really educate and inform ourselves on some of these topics (for whatever reasons) regarding what is being put into our food and water supply. At least, I have been so guilty.

Genetically Modified Foods... who knows what the ramifications of it will be down the line (of course, when the world ends in 2012 it won't matter... *sly wink*), and I think there is more information to be learned on it.

Food. Clothing. Shelter.
Everything else is just that - everything else.

I'm not a radical about anything, my view is balance (harmony ♪ ♫) is what we should be striving for... balanced profit, balanced living, balanced eating, balanced work and play... and based on our individual need.  Like all diets are not for everyone -- lifestyle and choices of where we put our energy are not the same for everyone -- but should balance out in the end -- over the scope of a timeline.

Right now, I'm not in balance with eating because I was so far out of balance for so many years: in overeating and eating when I wasn't hungry and eating to disguise emotions.  I now am having to cut way back and a part of me is really bothered by the amount of processed 'diet' food I'm consuming -- but I brought myself to this place; and if it takes however long to be on this 'lack' side of the eating pendulum... well, okay then! I accept it. I accept my responsibility in getting to this point, and now suffer the consequences of eating a 800-1,000 calories a day with no fruit.  But there is light at the end of the tunnel, and I'm so INCREDIBLY thankful that I'm in the process of losing the excess. When MF ends, I will be back in balance, and am doing things NOW to help keep that balance when I go back to 'normal' - whatever that is.

Being so focused on this for two months is really really. r e a l l y ! cool.

I'm incredibly blessed, and incredibly thankful.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Day 52 ~ A Good Day

I didn't post yesterday because there was a lot going on ~ and in order to "get prepared" for my New Habit starting Tuesday, I got up at 5:30 am yesterday - went to bed way too late last night and got up at 6:30 am this morning.

I did some work for work (working on the newsletter takes more focus than most of the jobs in the office, and with so many interruptions and distractions I struggle getting it done on time) for about 3 hours this morning.  I cleaned the master bedroom bathroom - which was a good hour, and I took the pumice stone to the toilets. 

You know how it is when something has been bothering you for what seems like FOREVER... and you have the tools to get the job done ~ but for whatever reason ~ it seems bigger than it is, or there doesn't seem to be the "right" 15 minutes to make a start...? [Like I know what the "right" 15 minutes to clean the toilets means...?!?]

Anyhoo.... Phase I of the Master bedroom bathroom is complete ~ Fridays will be the day to keep up with it.  It isn't a "Master Bathroom" because it is barely 16 square feet big. with a shower for one, and it barely fits one.

  • Towels Laundered - check
  • Laundry Load 2 - check
  • Proteins marinating - check
  • dresser dusted - check
  • Recycling Out - check
  • Trash Bins emptied - check
  • Packages to Scotland packed (done for a couple weeks) - but started filling out the address labels - check (this is a process because I already taped up one and have to think back to what I put in it - and now they want to know how much each item weighs... jeez! 4 men's t-shirts = ?; women's socks (3 pr) = ? the total box weighs 7.4 lbs on my kitchen scale... and the box must weigh something... Anyway ~ you get the idea!

Today has been productive, but still so many things to do...!

Getting up early really is key -- especially if I'm able to get some stuff done!
* * * * *

Had a good quartet rehearsal last night - it went long! We started looking at the Star Spangled Banner as Spring Training is coming...! And we'll be learning "O Canada" since lots of teams that come to play are from the Great White North.

* * * * *

Saw my mom and step-dad Wednesday night and we went to dinner at Red Lobster -- I had the Full Plate of Mahi Mahi which was amazing! With a double order of Broccoli, which was probably too much when included with the Cesar salad I had -- and I indulged in the Cesar dressing.  The scale was up two lbs yesterday morning, but I'm 99.9% sure it was salt -- I don't think the fish was plain grilled... and the dressing was probably way high too.  Dang it was good ;-)

This morning the scale was down a pound from yesterday, so I'm not stressing about it.
* * * * *

I didn't go to chorus this week -- it has been super busy and there isn't any let up between now and contest in April, so I took a personal day. . . I'm doing chorus 'work' alright, but having that night in was a treat.  I do miss it when I don't go, however! ♪ ♫ ♪
* * * * *

My aunt gave me a pair of smaller trousers ~ someone else gave me a pair that doesn't fit her right, either -- and so I have at least two pairs of pants to wear in a couple weeks. Yay!
* * * * *

De-cluttering ~ ~ I've gone through a few piles and am putting together stuff to get rid of; wondering if we have enough for a Yard Sale - by April 1st... Or if I should just take it all to the Good Will.
* * * * *

I had some gratifying news about a former boss. I was in a bit of turmoil for 24 hours mulling it over in my mind.  There were things that happened which spun me out of the position, and me being who I am caused some distress, I know. The influence this person had on my life has definitely been positive - I wouldn't be where I am now (emotionally improving) without the kick-in-the-butt I received from this person. I'm extremely grateful for the experience, and pray everything works out in the life and situation of this person.
* * * * *
Nothing else new to report, really -- just keepin' on and looking forward to the new habit starting next week!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Day 50 -- Whoo Boy ! ! F I F T Y Days . . .

and in 50 days by my scale I've lost 38 lbs.  *Happy Dancin' Happin' RIGHT NOW Folks!!*

Today is much better than yesterday, the day before that, and the day before that.
I had eggs last night for dinner (two eggs + 1 Cup of Egg Beaters with some additional protein in the form of Cheese!) and it tasted a bit more normal than the icky tofu I had the other night... I didn't spice it all up, it was simple and delicious!
* * * * *

So ... a friend posted a Facebook Link on this NY Times article about how McDonald's "Healthy" option of Oatmeal is slightly less than a load of manure... makes me so sad.  Really, world, we should be back-lashing against the Golden Arches in so many ways.  Granted, while I lived out of the states Mickey D's French Fries were a golden and wonderful thing... but now I'm a converted 'Chip Shop Chips' are the BEST... so the famous french fries don't even do it for me anymore.

It just makes me sad that they're marketing it as a healthy option but yes, it has more sugar than a snickers bar... according to the article:
The aspect one cannot argue is nutrition: Incredibly, the McDonald’s product contains more sugar than a Snickers bar and only 10 fewer calories than a McDonald’s cheeseburger or Egg McMuffin. (Even without the brown sugar it has more calories than a McDonald’s hamburger.)

The bottom-line question is, “Why?” Why would McDonald’s, which appears every now and then to try to persuade us that it is adding “healthier” foods to its menu, take a venerable ingredient like oatmeal and turn it into expensive junk food? Why create a hideous concoction of 21 ingredients, many of them chemical and/or unnecessary? Why not try, for once, to keep it honest? 
 Here is the link to the McDonald's Nutrition Info for the Fruit & Maple Oatmeal (with diced apples and cranberry raisin blend but no cream). (270 calories; 2.5 g fat, 5 g protein, 150 mg sodium, 57 g carbs, 31 g sugars, 5 g fiber

Here is the link to the nutrition in a regular sized (2 oz) Snickers Bar. (271 calories, 13.6 g fat, 4.3 g protein, 150 mg sodium, 34.5 g carbs, 28.8 g sugars, 1.3 g fiber)

Here is a link to the 'Self' Nutrition site which I've linked to the Quaker Oats Instant 'Apples & Cinnamon' oatmeal... and even IT is better than McD's .

and Here is Quaker Oats quick cooking oats, Dry Nutrition Info ~ still high in carbs, but not sugar!

After looking at the numbers myself -- besides the fat that is so much more in the Snickers... it is about equal... and I am satisfied from a snickers for awhile, too -- it sticks with me. It is the 'better' option for a low-carb eating program, which just cracks me up.
* * * * *

I may have mentioned in a previous post how much I enjoy my morning MF oatmeal and would like to continue that tradition in the future. . . and I found a great site that gives a step by step process with a cost analysis as well. The site is "The Simple Dollar" and what a great website overall, let alone for this very in-depth step-by-step guide and overview to creating your own 'instant' oatmeal that truly is 'have it your way' and MUCH healthier than McD's!

I don't need the CoffeeMate or non-dairy anything (though as an occasional treat it might be a nice change, especially with the flavor options out there now)... I also thought trying Ovaltine with it might be interesting!

I think I have some Quaker Rolled Oats, and I know I have the other ingredients (cinnamon, stevia and/or Splenda) and I won't be adding any fruit for awhile, but I'm curious to try this as a future recipe for when I'm weaned off the MF foods! My goal would be to bulk up the protein probably with Flax seeds (lower carbs than Oat Bran).

The nutrition info for the Peach Oatmeal for MF is: (Serving Size is 34.1 g)
Calories: 110
Total Fat 1.5 g
Sodium 180 mg
total Carb 16 g
Dietary Fiber 5 g
Sugars 2 g
Protein 11 g
* * * * *

What else... I've been thinking about business and money... and am being quite introspective at the moment ~ creating the job of your dreams, etc... and thinking about my new focus starting on March 1st which will be going to bed earlier to get up at 5am EVERY MORNING in order to incorporate exercise into my routine.

My new favorite quote: The #1 Secret to being an adult is: "What you do every day is more important than what you do once in awhile." I got this from "The Happiness Project" Blog by Gretchen Rubin, author of the book, "The Happiness Project."

I've written it on two sticky notes - one for the bathroom mirror and one by my alarm clock by my bed. This next focus is going to be the hardest thing I've ever done, I think. I like sleep. I like the warm bed. I like feeling the rush of adrenaline when I'm pushed for time (late!). Did I say I like sleep...? Cuz yeah, I really like sleep. I don't like doing the things I'm getting up to do -- i.e., house chores - laundry, dishes, vacuuming, dusting, taking out the trash, etc... I don't particularly like exercising. I've been a night owl all my life and I LIKE IT THAT WAY -- but I have to be a grown up now, I guess. At least until I can make money at my passions and loves, which is what my new blog is going to be about (hey, that was subtle, eh?!) It is still a baby at the moment, but all will be revealed soon).

I need to change my mind, I know - simple, but not easy. To remember the reasons I LIKE to get up... see the sunrise (I love seeing the sunrise with a steaming cup of tea and hearing the birds twirping so very loudly in the morning... very nice!). ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmm....... [long pause]

what else do I like? I like having time to write a good blog post (this one is being done in the afternoon, when I should be doing other things). I like having time to review my goals and 'to do' list for the day/week. I like having time to pray and read the bible. I like having time to get the house chores OUT OF THE WAY so I can do the things I love (and hope to make money at) in the afternoons ~ guilt-free!

Ultimately, getting up earlier will result in having more energy (by putting exercise in my life) and being more productive in all areas of my life.  As Steve Pavlina has said, "Fire that person who says it is okay to go back to sleep in the morning!" ~ and tell myself if I'm super tired in the afternoon, I can always have a nap!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Day 48 ~ Yes, what a Monday!

I'm losing focus. Haven't been detailed on my food list, and that is very dangerous.

Bored of the routine. Bored. Bored. Bored. Bored.

One week left before the shift to a new habit/focus... which will be the combination of going to bed early to get up early.  For Two Months.  Regardless of what obstacles I may put in my way.

Getting some productivity done in the morning is KEY! Planning my eating day in the MORNING is Essential to my success in this weight loss as well as the maintaining the weight loss that comes later, which I understand is more difficult than losing the weight.
* * * * *
Time Out for a Snack:

100 Calorie snack = 2 slices of deli ham (Per slice: 30 calories, 380 mg sodium, 0 carbs, 1.5 g fat) with 1 Laughing Cow Cheese wedge (35 calories, 260 mg sodium, 1 g carb, 2 g fat), tonight I added 2 small leaves of Romaine lettuce (per leaf (?) = 10 calories, 2.27 mg sodium, .67 g carb, 1 g fiber, 0 g fat) which brought the calorie total up to a whopping 115 cal, 1,020 ms sodium (high!), 2.34 g carbs, 5 g fat).  For me this is a very satisfying mouthful that can hold me for awhile.  I mash the cheese in the ham, lay on the lettuce and roll up to eat.
* * * * *

I'm going to make more turnip fries and turkey burgers, because I'm missing that 'normalcy' a little.  Tonight is Mahi Mahi - YUM, but I really am craving some brown rice... Out of cauliflower and don't feel like fooling with ricing or grating or whatever to it to create a "rice like" texture/consistency.

Last night's dinner was icky... I didn't marinate the Tofu, which is a mistake -- the veggies were good, but the lack of deep flavor convinced me that some soy sauce would be okay -- and the sodium yesterday was higher, which showed up as a "plus 1" on the scale this morning.  I suspected it would do that, however, so I was prepared.

I'm feeling deadlines creeping up and my procrastination tendencies are at an all time high it seems, as I'm having fun thinking about my new room... and not clearing the clutter, taking the (insert expletive here) tree down, putting away my craft supplies and generally being bored with house chores.

This is where I have to sit myself down and give myself a pep talk... how much easier it is when I plan, and things are done, and just spend 15 minutes (at this point I'm doing just 7 minutes...!) doing one thing.  I unloaded the dishwasher this morning (after turning the alarm off at 6:30 and sleeping until 7:45ish), and the kitchen is in pretty good shape... but I've not planned my meals or shopping and feel the anxiety building.

It is probably time to experiment with the MF foods to make "bread" and "pizza" etc... see how that goes.

I am, however, wearing a pair of pants that I've not worn in over a year (maybe longer) because I always felt 'fat' in them - they're a sage green knit elastic-waisted pair of pants and there's a top that I wear with them, and I can tell I'm losing.  So YAY!!!

Keeping the Visualization Up is another thing I need to do first thing in the morning, along with being grateful and thankful and appreciating all that I have and all the blessings in my (our) life.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Day 47 ~ The Blahs

Tired of the Routine this morning...

Am soaking the MF Oatmeal, but meanwhile am having a cuppa with Almond Milk (Optional Condiment) and had 3 pieces of deli ham (0 carbs, 900 g sodium, 4.5 g F) with 1 oz L.C. Cheese for breakfast... I wanted something to 'chew on' I guess...

Tired of doing Laundry, Tired of Dishes, Tired of the Mess that is My Room...

Tired of thinking of healthy things to eat... Just want to eat.

So... off to the shower, and 15 minutes of doing one chore... thank you FlyLady for the "I Can Do Anything for 15 Minutes" Rule To Live By!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Day 45 ~ More Emotional Sifting

Somehow I'm a day off -- This should be Day 46 -- but I'm just going to go with it.
* * * * *
Yesterday was a pretty awful struggle in the afternoon/early evening!

It is tied in with not contributing enough money to the household, and feeling quite poor all the time; though we certainly are not poor! We are considerably blessed -- and I have to really check myself when I start feeling all deprived... SOOOOOOO not deprived!!!

I'd met a friend at Starbucks, who has asked me to help her and her business partner market their website better -- and she'll/they'll be paying for my efforts.  Situations like this put me in a place of anxiety. Big Time!  I'm absolutely THRILLED that she thought of me, and has put her trust in me to do what I can (whatever that is). On the other hand, I know I'm lacking in a lot of knowledge that others out there possess as a second nature, almost, when it comes to this stuff (internet marketing).

We wrote some stuff down, and I have an idea how to get started -- I wrote her an email to recap what we'd discussed, and we came to a payment agreement; which I also recapped in the email (and, by the way, it suits me perfectly and the timing is amazing!).  This is one of those situations where I firmly believe that God has worked His perfect timing in an answer to prayer.  *But* I just had that thought about an answer to prayer this very minute as I've been trying to write this post and figure out what I'm trying to say!

Takes a moment to reflect and say "Thank You God - You ROCK!"

Back to the other stuff... when I got home, I was hungry - had a pickle, my soup, water, and himself discovered his battery was dead and told me he had to go into work today (and no, he didn't want to take my car so I could pile stuff in the van because it was the first opportunity he would have of driving with his super-duper spectacular radio that has blue tooth and a little mini screen so it can play DVDs too... cuz THAT is what you need while driving -- another distraction[!]), and all these things that I'd promised the Rummage Sale was going up in smoke; so feeling bad about not delivering on THAT promise [lesson learned: don't promise, just say 'do my best' and try, I guess... which wraps me up in wishy-washiness, which I really don't like!].

I got on the computer and went to their website, read my 'idiot's guide' about creating web pages and blogs regarding Meta tags... nothing about adding video on it, so more research coming... and getting hungrier... had a 'snack' (which I now realize is a meal replacement, not an optional snack -- oops!)... some tea... no idea what to have for dinner -- but the feelings are crying out for BULK and COMFORT.  And then I remembered I had Shirataki Noodles -- and remembered Lyn's Shiratake Noodle Bake was on her site, so went over there and used it as a starting point and digressed from her recipe almost 100% (*smile*)... but I didn't start cooking until like, 8:30 pm because of all the emotional crap I was fighting in my head.

I was feeling really crappy, and for the first time, really (since starting MF in January) --I had a concrete thought of going to food as a way to "Feel Better." My head knew that was crap, and I just took a few minutes to breathe, and asked myself  "why are you feeling like this? REALLY??!!" and processed my feelings, trying to figure out what was happening.  Expressing my frustration that plans I thought we'd made were only in my head, and being careful not to put blame anywhere and also express appreciation at how hard himself has been working at work and at home... and taking action on marketing myself as a singer for senior communities by drafting a letter to solicit business -- all these things brought my emotions back in balance.

I started realizing when I was cooking that I was going to be going over on my amounts -- this was quite conscious, actually (not that I started with the intention of going over, but realizing that I wanted ALL the noodles!!! and that I'd figure out the equivalents later, which I've done this morning) so my amounts were  = 5 Greens, Less than 1 Lean, 5 over on my condiments -- Plus I'd had an extra MF Meal because I thought the Parmesan Cheese Puffs were a snack, not a Meal Replacement... you can see my recipe here (very VERY loosely based on Lyn's from Escape from Obesity). As I say, I was more interested in Bulk & Comfort, I think -- the noodles were extremely appealing at the time of this minor emotional crisis...

as you can see... it looks pretty darn delicious.. and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I was completely satisfied after eating and while I knew I'd gone over and was off on a few things according to strict MF Guidelines...
I also knew that everything I was putting in my mouth was On Program -- it wasn't pasta, it wasn't potatoes, it wasn't Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, or chocolate! So I'm absolutely thrilled with my process and my progress and taking a minute to step back, get some perspective and HANG ON!
* * * * * 
So -- Yay ME! and as a reward -- I bought some songs on itunes! I'm planning a "Doris Day" set for a Cabaret Show, and need to learn a few songs -- so... got a few Doris tunes (I ♥ Doris Day!), AND remembered a song from long long longgggg ago that I've been meaning to get on my ipod for awhile, "The Last Time I Felt Like This (I Was Falling In Love)" [the song and clips from the movie on YouTube] sung by Johnny Mathis & Jane Olivor from the movie, "Same Time, Next Year" -- which is one of my all time favorite movies, that I keep forgetting I adore! 

I sang the song with good and very talented friend in High School for one of our choir concerts -- and was so happy last night when I remembered it... FOUND it... and listened to it again!!
* * * * *

So... today I am feeling better... the scale was still down 1 lb this morning, and I have the day off so was able to catch up on some sleep, write at a pace I like, load my car with the few things I've gathered for the Rummage Sale, and now off to deliver it - and make a stop at storage so I can plan for the Craft Class tomorrow!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Day 44 ~ It Looks Like Rain in the Arizona Sky!

I'm sniffly and sneezy... so the garlic came out this morning -- along with extra Vitamin C and Echinacea!  Lots of water, and two more hours of sleep should help!

Feeling good ~ my scale showed down .2 lbs this morning!

This is just a quickie morning post, have to head off to work.  More to Come
* * * * *

Whew. I feel like I just walked off a cliff of discouragement and dismay.  I think I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed with the fact that I seriously need another job ~ and the prospects are slim!

The job websites are all showing sales, retail, call center or "WORK FROM HOME!" - bleh.

So I started composing a letter to send to Senior Communities in the area to go and sing for them ~ which has brightened my spirits considerably.

Dang -- those feelings are dangerous... I've not had my Lean & Green yet, and I'm HUNGRY... but feeling all down and under keeps any kind of motivation far away -- and if I don't have a plan, I'll be Done For!  And today I didn't have a plan -- I have zukes, some kale, some romaine, some cottage cheese, some fat-free cheese, some scallions, some broccoli and cauliflower ~ so I can do stuff... plus a tin of diced tomatoes, some chicken broth (low sodium this time!), and all sorts of ideas... just nothing sounded good.

Himself's van's battery was dead after he fitted his super-spectacular new radio (his Christmas present), and going outside to hang out with it while it ran for 30 minutes after he got it started so he could go back and work... and the fact that I had talked about needing the van tomorrow to take stuff to the Rummage Sale, and how he's not done the things we talked about him doing so I could take the pieces to the Rummage Sale drop off tomorrow... I'm sure those feelings had something to do with how I was feeling.

And the fact I've not taken the tree down doesn't help me feel any better.

What good does it do to say anything? Nothing will change... he'll just be upset, which makes me upset, and I just don't have the emotional tools to really stand up for myself.  Well... I expressed myself, without placing blame, just expressing frustration -- and he's worked really hard all week, and the room is so close to being finished it is within spitting distance! :-)
* * * * *

I'm fixing the Shirataki Noodle Bake which I've modified quite a bit... going to take it out of the oven and take a picture and post it later... while cooking, it tasted delish!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Day 44 ~ Down 37 Pounds!

Today was a MF Clinic Visit -- another Official Weigh In! 

I was thinking on my drive home that I should collect something that represents how much weight I've lost and am losing ~ something to build that is a visual image to reinforce just *how much* and *how heavy* 37 pounds (and more) actually *IS!*

hmmm... will have to think about it!

* * * * *

I met my good friend at Mimi's for my Petite Sirloin and roasted veggies... tonight I had a super portion of veggies which included Asparagus! Bonus!! My friend was held up for a little while in traffic, so I had a cup of coffee with hot water added (I'm not a fan of strong coffee), and over 3 cups of diluted coffee I had two little containers of 1/2 & 1/2, and a packet of Splenda.  While waiting for her I also had a Cesar Salad with low-fat Citrus dressing (yuck) on the side, no croutons, and a bit of Parmesan Cheese.  My friend brought along her Ascorbic acid crystals, which was a 'flavoring' she could use when she was having some serious stomach/digestion issues.  It is good stuff! And Good For You! Will have to look for it at the Health Food Store.

I listened to my Happy-Positive-Upbeat Music Playlist on the way home, and think I did a good job... *ha!* All music I like!!

* * * * *

My Quartet did a little Birthday/Valentines Performance on Sunday and we had a blast!

 Aren't we cute?
* * * * *
In other news... we're still waiting on news for my newest niece or nephew... any minute now!

* * * * *
The additional room himself has been working on is starting to come together quite quickly! We're getting ready to paint the ceiling, and will probably be moving furniture in a few weeks.  Very VERY exciting!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Day 43

Here's the promised picture of Turnip Fries... will post the recipe on the recipe page a little later... these are yum!!

The first picture is 3 turnips cut into french fry shapes before going into the oven.
The second picture are the fries done... will cut them a little larger next time, maybe they'll be a little crunchier on the outside.

Regardless, they were delicious!!
* * *

Busy Day... it is bed time. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Day 42 ~ Turnip Fries - Yum!

I don't have a picture uploaded yet, but will soon.  Yum! Who knew Turnip "Fries" could be so delicious! Himself thought they tasted similar to Sweet Potato Fries... kind of a sweet flavor, compared to potatoes.  I baked them in the oven with some olive oil, cajun spices, pepper & Parmesan cheese... I'd bet if they were fried in the traditional manner they'd be awesome, too!

I went and bought himself's birthday and valentines chocolate today at Walgreens... and while I wasn't tempted really... I was tempted, in a way. It was a weird thing.  I have chocolate options on MF, but it isn't a box of Lindt Truffles, which is what I got himself for his present.  It was a $11 box of mini desserts, which looked lovely!  So now I'm debating do I want the MF Brownie, or Hot Cocoa... thinking the cocoa will be the choice tonight.

That's all for today!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Day 40

I had a HUGE long list of things I wanted to get done... but I watched a lot of HGTV today, instead.

I cleaned out a drawer from one of the pieces of furniture we're going to donate to the Rummage Sale -- and I showered and met a good friend for tea this morning -- which was awesome catching up on her life and that the high drama that was there in November is gone! YAY! 

Have a quartet Valentine's Performance tomorrow... didn't look at any music today at all -- feeling quite Blah and icky, actually... *rolling eyes* -- it is a normal thing that happens at least once a month... IYKWIM (!) So tomorrow will be a little stressful... so I'm heading to bed.

On the plus side, my scale was down a pound :-)  and himself is making great progress on the room... very exciting to be thinking about how to arrange furniture, etc... for what will be the "Craft/Music/Get-away-from-the-constant-tv-noise/Office/ Possible Guest Room" Space!!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Day 38 & 39

After my last long post, I needed a break!

I've cleaned my house (well, tidied would be more accurate, let's not go crazy! ha!)

I've done laundry

I've done some music

I've done some putting away of the craft stuff

I've gone through stuff to put in the "donate" pile for my chorus rummage sale

I've stayed on plan!

I've not gained anything!

I've thought about the new craft/office/studio space that will soon have a full ceiling installed!

I've called a friend and arranged to meet for a warm beverage

I hung out with a great friend yesterday and we schemed and plotted all sorts of wonderful plans and things

I've written down what MF Meals I've made in the start of a Menu Rotation Plan

I still have to mail a package and take the tree down (ugh!) -- but when I take the tree down, I'll be ridding myself of decorations that I no longer want or need... maybe I can do that tonight while watching tv with himself.

Life is Good! And I'm so incredibly thankful for this gift of Medifast and the energy I feel... the beautiful weather in Southern Arizona (sunny and cold is my favorite time of year!) adds to my energy. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Day 37 ~ Whoopeeeeee!!

This morning was a gorgeous number on the scale!  Down 3 lbs... and I've not seen this number in a long... L.O.N.G time!!

A number of thoughts have occurred to me to write about... wonder if I can remember any of them now (*lol*)!

Some Keys to my success so far

Key: Getting in my 32 oz of water in the morning before 9am.  This keeps me pretty satisfied hunger-wise. I notice if I have a headache, or have some anxiety (aka stress), I chew gum to "chew-off" some of that excess energy. This gum thing has been a huge "A-Ha!" for me.

Key: Planning my dinner in the morning (in other words, in advance!).  Seems like the whole planning thing is a Duh(!) ~ and I've mentioned planning before... I have a couple 'go to' meals for when I can't be bothered planning my Lean & Green... (Mahi Mahi marinated in my favorite marinade and grilled on the GFG, with Spinach, Romaine & Broccoli or other raw veggie with Wishbone Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing, maybe some almonds, or Parmesan cheese, even a TB of real bacon bits if I'm feeling like I need some variety is one; Beef Zucchini Skillet Meal is another.)

Key: Blogging and tracking everything.  Much easier when MF does all the work for you! But tracking all condiments, SALT(!), fats... snacks... it all counts. Blogging helps me reflect on what is happening, because it is happening fast! To be able to look back and see how far I've come, what I've learned, how I've been feeling -- it all is helpful in learning more about myself and how I got to this 300+ pound place in the first place.

Key: Accountability. Leo Babuta is right.  Even though there aren't a lot of comments (*sad face here*), I know people are looking... and cheering... and reading... making their own judgements... and just knowing that I'm not just answering to myself is one of my personal motivations.  I tend not to keep my word to myself, but keeping my word to others is place much higher on my priority scale... though this is slowly (oh so very very slowly) changing.

Key: Keeping the food 'fresh' -- finding things I can do on MF with the MF Foods, MF-Friendly recipes; I'm putting together a resource of everything I've found that looks worth trying -- so far it is a 32 page document(!).

Key: Reading other weight loss blogs. Real People are Really Inspiring. Full Stop. Just knowing there are a lot of us out there trying to [1] Lose then [2] Maintain... we are excellent company!

Key: Focus. Blogging/Logging helps keep me focused. Knowing that this (MF Losing Weight Plan) is all I have to focus on for two months (as I'm following the philosophy), and 'getting into my groove and good habits' I think has been the most important thing.  Seeing my pants falling down around my ankles is the vision I keep in front of me all the time. *Big Grin!*

* * *

Lucerne Cottage Cheese has a 'no-salt' added option. Today I bought one container of that, and one of non-fat... taste-tested today and the no-salt one is quite vile, to be honest. I mixed the two together, which will still reduce the salt and fat of both of them, and hoping the taste will improve after they've had time to 'mingle.'

Will give a progress report later.
* * *

I took progress pictures today... 30 lbs gone! Will get those updated to the Progress Page as soon as this post is done.
* * *

Asked the question today of my MF Counselor regarding Vegan Mozarella cheese (made from Tofu)... Situation was this ~ Monday I was starving and had all my protein at lunch ~ so Portabella Pizzas it was, and instead of regular cheese (which is counted as a protein), I used the Tofu Cheese (which actually tastes pretty good, and as you see in the photo, melted pretty good under the broiler, too!), thinking that Tofu can can go either way as a "Lean" or a "Green."

Shirataki Noodles are considered by MF to be a "Green" -- but they are made from Tofu.
Tofu is considered a "Lean" (non-meat option) -- also made of Tofu.
In My World, I think if you have all your protein and want to use 2 TB of Tofu Cheese as part of your Green Meal, it should count as a Green ;-)
In MF World, it is counted as a Lean -- good reasoning behind it, actually -- counting as a Lean then still requires one to have the appropriate number of servings of Green, which has more fiber, needed nutrients etc...

That Being Said -- Shirataki Noodles should then be considered a Lean (for the sake of pure consistency).

Just my processing thoughts ;-)  It's all good... because if you're going to "go off plan" or "have too much of something" it is better to err on the side of Protein!!

You can see the Zucchini peeking out from under the cheese. I stir-friend the zuke in a flavor profile* to be spicier... so I'd maybe have a sensation of meat (I don't particularly like pepperoni).

*Flavor Profile = Perhaps a Bit Too Much Watching of the "Top Chef" I'd say, eh? *LOL*

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Day 36 ~ Yesterday I was so hungry

It is weird how some days are super easy to stick with the limited food allowed on MF, and other days my body just wants so much more! 

Yesterday the morning started out hungry -- I usually am not that hungry immediately after waking up... though I've slacked a little on my two glasses of water and a hot cup of tea in the morning; mostly because I've been slacking going to bed before midnight and that leads to not waking up before 7:30 am, which leaves me little time for anything 'extra' in the morning... lick starting my blog post at 5:45 am, and leisurely doing morning dishes, making my cup of tea, drinking down the water leftover from the night before and another whole glass with my MF Vitamins.

The next problem is I was unprepared after work -- I had my MF Bar at 10:30 am (still so hungry!), but was feeling all out of sorts yesterday morning -- and ran an errand after work, and didn't get home until 1:30 or so -- had a pickle while I fixed my lunch -- and gnawed on the extra chicken (and it tasted soooo GOOD!!).

** a friend of mine just lost her husband of 14 years to a long, brave, hard-fought battle with cancer. They have two young children, and it has been 4 years of watching this family go through this.  Right now my 'battle' with food seems so much "less than." **

Here's to more days being less-led by my feelings, and more days led by the good habits I'm trying to create.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Day 35

Ummmmmmm.... thoughts this morning....

I'm poor. I'm tired of being poor.  I have a lot of things that I want to do that require payment... putting "perfect 2nd job" thoughts out there...

I'm thrilled that 6 lbs are gone over the last 4 days... it seems eating fish for dinner is a key! Mmmmm.... Fish :-)

Yesterday was full of technology for me -- learning how to manipulate the videos taken over the last couple of weekends for chorus -- uploading to You Tube, creating a help document for the less-than-interested folk who don't particularly enjoy technology challenges... still have a lot to do, but even though I don't have a lot to show for the work, I did get a lot done.  And this kind of work keeps me from eating.  I really do enjoy the challenge!

Am late (got up WAY too late after going to bed WAY too late....), so gotta run!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Day 34 ~ Down 3 lbs this morning


Today I'm sitting in front of the pc ~ Putting together a "Happy-Positive-Uplifting" Playlist in my ipod, now that I have another synch cable for the pc... One of my rewards to myself is buying a new song per pound I lose :-).... or so.

I have a ton of other stuff I need to work on, so 15 minutes more and It'll be "done enough" to synch up my ipod with all the new stuff!! Yep, 6.5 hours of music should be PLENTY!

Superbowl Sunday XLV - Packers vs. Steelers
I'm going with Packers ~ Steelers were so 'big' when I was in elementary school, so for me, the Packers are still the underdog. Please understand I don't follow football and don't know anything.

Today I'm chillin' ~ no quartet rehearsal, and just a few chores... a long list of things to do, but I'm enjoying my day off!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Day 33 ~ Chorus Coaching

Down 3 lbs on my scale this morning.... *YAY*

soaking my soup, can't find my tall thermos for having a shake later today, don't have all my water bottles together.

More later! Gonna be a fun day :-)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Day 32 ~ 26 Lbs Down! (* Official!* )

Will have to get a Progress Photo done!  The last 4 lbs (well, technically 3 lbs as of this morning) have been hard earned! After reading that the average American retains between 20 and 30 lbs of water because of how much sodium we consume... well, I'm flabbergasted.  I knew too much salt was bad for us, yadda yadda yadda - blah blah blah... now I've been hit in the head and don't want to go back!

This morning I was up 1 lb from yesterday - but I'm okay with it. I know fluctuation is part of the journey, and I did have an extra meal last night (MF Hot Cocoa) because I was so hungry... my eating schedule was thrown way off by the lack of water in the morning (no shower, no teeth brushed, no soup pre-made and just generally unprepared) so ate bars all morning, had a skimpy dinner out at Mimi's (very un-happy with my veggie portion), and was so hungry just about all day.

Lesson Learned: Regular Eating Schedule is key.  Planning Ahead is the Key to THAT Key!!

Now for some Food Photos!

Portabella Mushroom "Pizza"
The Portabella Mushroom Caps are grilled for 10 minutes on the GFG (with a tiny splash of olive oil, Mrs. Dash and pepper). For the Pizza Sauce, I didn't use onions this time (I used 1/2 tsp of Onion Powder), but next time I'll put one green onion. That with a minced clove of garlic in a small shallow pan with 2 tsp of olive oil... I then put 1/4 C of diced tomatoes and about 1/8 C of frozen chopped peppers (red, green & yellow). I then put in 1/4 tsp each of Basil, Oregano & Italian Spice mix, 2 TB water (when I have low-sodium chicken broth I'll use that). I simmered it on medium for awhile... then poured the mixture into a small measuring glass and smoothed it out with the hand-held mixer.  Back in the pan to simmer some more, and added about 1/4 of a packet of Splenda. For what it was, it was delish!  I then cut string cheese for the top (the only low-fat cheese I had around). Then under the broiler (on High) for about 2 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and starts to brown.

Shirataki Noodle - Tofu - Stir-fry (YUM)!I found the coolest square vegetable cutter (like an apple corer/slicer) only square... and it did the Tofu in those neat (even-cooking) squares. I diced zucchini and stir-fried the tofu in TJs Soyaki, some water and a few other spices. I added the Veg about 10 minutes into it, and poured a little olive oil in the pan to crisp up the Tofu (used Extra Firm). After the stir fry was done, I crisped up a little less than half of the noodles, and they were FABULOUS!!

I can have 15 oz of Tofu - that is almost a pound! This shows just 7 oz, which is plenty... so splitting up this "Lean" of the Lean and Green will work well on days (like today), where I'm pretty hungry and not at work.

I've also gathered a chart of vegetable serving sizes by weight -- because it is difficult to measure a 1/2 C of asparagus(!). That will come in handy.

I've got a chart of High Fiber Foods by 1 C servings, and plan to incorporate Flax Seeds and Kale into my meals... Flax for regular... uummmmm.... *movement* and Kale because it is a powerhouse of fiber and a moderate carb that is on the MF list (1 Cup = 7.2 g fiber).  Broccoli is the other powerhouse for fiber (1 C = 4.50 g fiber), but it is considered a higher carb veggie.

The other two powerhouses of fiber in the veggie department are Avocado -- which is a MF "no no" for now (1 Medium = 11.84 g fiber), and cooked green peas -- not only a MF no no but a 'me no likey' also(!) (1 C = 8.84 g fiber).  I can't wait to have Avocados again... I'm planning to use it as often as possible for replacing mayonnaise and butter :-)
* * *

SUPERBOWL SUNDAY -- XLV ~ Packers vs. Steelers
In our house, traditionally himself deems it "Hot Dog Day" - and boils onions and eats hot dogs all day long. With some crisps, maybe.

So I've been looking for some snacky food items that will be "Fun" and "Good For Me (Us)" -- So far I think making deviled eggs and zucchini chips sounds like a good start... I may try the Cauliflower "Bread" Sticks, too.  I bought some MF Honey Mustard Pretzel Sticks (which is considered a Meal) and MF White Cheddar Soy Crisps (which is considered an optional snack). 
* * *

Emotionally... doing good.  Falling behind on this blog is NOT a good thing, it is such an awesome tool for keeping my head in the game!  I love reading other blogs, but I tend to read first... and by the time I get around to mine I'm tired of being in front of the computer! Or I lolly-gagged around and don't have time to put serious thought and effort into content.  Yes, sometimes I am genuinely busy -- but THIS is the most important thing.This focus on losing 150+ lbs.  Lyn had another great post today about not wanting this to take any longer than it has to.  She's been on her path for 4 years, and is tired of "trying to lose weight."  Amen Sister!

For over 20 years (some of that time was wasted mental energy because I didn't really need to lose weight...) I've "wanted" to lose weight.  But even with so many good programs out there (Weight Watchers, Diet Center, South Beach, Curves Diet, etc...) I was not in a place where I was ready to make it my Number One Thing. I never tired of trying because I never really tried.  Two times I lost over 20 lbs (Diet Center and Weigh Down Workshop) over an 11-12 week period of time... but it (obviously) didn't stick.  So my question to myself is "Why Now? What is different?"

Being so obesely overweight is one thing that is different.  My age is different. Working on my self-esteem, that I "am enough" is different. Finally knowing what I really want... THAT is a helluva difference.
* * *

I love researching the food ideas, and when I'm tempted to eat something, coming online and reading recipes keeps me on track. Weird... I would think that reading about food would make me hungrier ~ but it is more likely to inspire me!

I have some new things to try -- Vegan Mozzarella Cheese ("It Melts!" says the package), because of the low-sodium content is something I'm going to try -- and Tempeh as an alternative protein.  I've read about it for years, and have found a couple recipes -- now I want to see what that is all about.

I've got Ahi Tuna in the freezer, and some Mahi Mahi -- and definitely will be looking out for making the fish in the next few days because I'm allowed so much AND get the healthy fat.  I miss the healthy fat when I have other protein choices.

This was a long post, but lots of catching up to do has been done.  Up and At 'Em should be my waking mantra... because like exercise, getting this done and accomplished in the morning is a great way to stay focused and not have any excuses!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Day 31 ~ Frozen Pipes this morning!

Unusual for Arizona! It has been QUITE cold!

Down .6 lbs. Was really "good" yesterday, so was hoping for a larger number for the MF Weigh later today... oh well! It is what it is, and I'll just keep on keepin' on and being "good!" I'm catching up to be "average" in the amount of weight lost in the first 4 weeks of this program, I guess. [Bummer that I have to be average ;-)]

Had the pork pattie again (no salt added), with grilled asparagus & cauliflower (1 TB TJs olive oil and Red Wine vinaigrette poured over, with some pepper) over a bed of spinach and a little romaine, with 1 tsp Balsamic over the leaves.

Gotta Run!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Day 30 ~ Wow! 30 Days!!!

On January 31 the scale read 27 lbs down. Today is 5 lbs higher than that... I'm sure it is a combination of things, beginning with the amount of sodium! So, I did a count of the MF Meals sodium, and the sodium in the foods I had. But first...

For most people, the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Research Council recommends 2,200 mg of sodium as a desirable intake.  That is equivalent to ONE TEASPOON of salt. (The average person has 20 times that amount, approximately 1 TB of salt every day) 

So here's the counts (from what I ate yesterday):
MF Oatmeal...135 mg Sodium
MF Chili...260 mg
MF Lemon Crunch...160 mg
1 oz Farmer Cheese...120 mg
pickle spear... 220 mg
Zucchini (1/2 C)... >01 mg
Cauliflower (per 50g)... 008 mg
Asparagus (per 50g)... 006 mg
Spinach (per 1/2 C)... 022 mg
TJ's Red Wine and 
 Olive Oil Vinaigrette... (2 tsp or 62 mg consumed) [190 mg (2 TB) serving size amount]
Wishbone Balsamic... (2 tsp or 92 mg consumed) [(280 mg (2 TB) serving size amount]
Pork Pattie... 053 mg (per 100 g = 3.5 oz)
Garlic Garni... (>1/4 tsp consumed or 20 mg +/-) [80 mg 1/4 tsp serving size amount)
MF Peanut Butter Crunch... 220 mg
MF Cappuccino... 110 mg

A Total of 1489 mg of Sodium for the day. That is 711 mg below the recommended amount. 

I was down 1 lb from yesterday... (yay!) BUT --- still up 5lbs from MONDAY! (Which was 5 lbs down from Saturday, which was 3 lbs up from Friday, which was 3 lbs down from Thursday, which was 1 lb up from Wednesday, January 27th; which was the last 'steady' day which held two days in a row)  Did you keep up? *lol*

I'm sure there are other things coming in to play -- more condiments than I should be allowing myself ~ however -- this little game that my body is playing with salt is definitely a lesson being learned that I'd never paid any attention to!  One of the Healthy websites I found while looking for naturally occurring sodium in foods said that many of us carry an extra 20 - 30 lbs of water weight just because of the high amount of salt in the American Diet.  Yikes!

So, I *know* that my first month on Medifast has been a loss of mostly water weight! As a friend said... "[I'm] peeing all my weight away!" and now I see that.  

I'm a little disconcerted about this realization.  A month just to get the salt washed away from my body? While it is a good thing, and my brain engaged in actually having to Pay Attention to this aspect of my food label reading is most certainly a positive thing... I'm bummin' a little.

That being said, my resolve is not dissipated one little bit. My visualization of my pants falling down around my ankles is still very much at the front of my mind (*grins!*).

So -- My Plan, you ask?

I've put together a document of low-salt marinades, rubs & seasoning mixes from a variety of sources, along with some home made dressing recipes.  I'll be printing that out and taste testing over the next month to find my favorites, and will try and change hubby's salt cravings, as he's probably retaining some fluid, too (he is a salt fiend, actually).

After reading the labels of my salad dressings that I'm using -- I didn't like the TJs Organic Red Wine & Olive Oil dressing on my salad, but it is FABULOUS over grilled veggies (I grilled Asparagus and Cauliflower yesterday for dinner), and pretty low in sodium for a salad dressing! Health Fat, though higher in fat that preferred at this point [2 TB is 140 cal, 15g Fat, 190 mg Sodium, 0 carbs]... will be asking about it at my MF Center appointment tomorrow.
* * *

I'm finding that dinner with Mahi Mahi seems to give me the bulk amount of food with a very great scale result in the mornings.  I bought some Tuna, so am eager to try that this week.  

The Shirataki Noodles are definitely noodle-y ~ but there is no way my brain is going to call them pasta... closer to Ramen noodles, I thought.  The ones I boiled in the VERY HIGH SODIUM Chicken Broth (so wasn't paying attention!) were tasty - very rubbery, but I didn't mind that. I took about 3 oz and stir fried them in the 'leftover bits' from the pan I in which I stir-fried the tofu and vegetables (note to self - "Soyaki" from TJs is tasty stuff but Totally. Off. Limits. Full Stop!), and crisping them up made them totally YUM!

The fish smell that everyone says is so awful (or, the "authentic" smell, as the label refers to it... ha ha ha!!!!), was totally less than what I was expecting after reading so much about it. Rinsing a few minutes under warm water, then boiling in (next time Low Sodium/No Salt Broth) with a minced clove of garlic gave them great flavor!

A New Beautiful Me Blog has some great recipes, and I have another package of them, and CodyJo has put a recipe up for Spinach Chicken "Noodle" soup, so I'll probably try that this weekend.
* * *

I've put other things first in the last couple of days -- I was in charge of testing the new chorus Video Cameras and setting them up, and downloading and editing the footage of the amazing coaching we had this weekend. I did plan ahead by looking at the menu at Chuy's and seeing what food on their menu I could have and still stay on plan (Yay For Me!)

I will have been out 3 nights of 5 this week (one night is driving up to my MF Appointment, so while that is within my 'Focus' - it is still 4 hours in the car plus 2 hours in Phoenix area having my appointment and spending time with my mom), and haven't come close to going to bed on time and getting up at 5am.  

This morning I started writing this around 6:30 am - it is now 8:10 am and I've got to get the shower in this morning!!

Food Log Updates tonight!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Day 29 ~ The Evil that is Sodium

I've been playing with the same 5 lbs  since January 27th.... and I'm SURE it is the amount of salt I've been consuming = water retention.

I've declared war on salt... I am putting together a document of low-salt marinades and rubs so that this doesn't happen consistently (my water retention).

Have to nap now.