September Challenge – Day 17

Hmmm…Day 17? Where is that wagon? I might have fallen off. I do not fit into my jeans and yet, I have dropped down to 20 minute workouts…every other day. And I haven’t done a workout today. I accidentally wrote workpout and that might be closer to the truth. I will not pout. I have no reason to complain. I will not get discouraged. It will take some time for me to change my lifestyle. I just can’t give myself too much grace, because that is how I got into this mess in the first place.

Today my baby girl is sick so, I will be making chicken noodle soup. And I don’t think I have my recipe written down. I mean, it’s soup, there isn’t much to write.

Chicken Noodle Soup

  • 2 lbs. cooked chicken, cubed
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced
  • 6-8 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • pinch of cayenne
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 lb egg noodles

In a large soup pot, saute onion and celery in a little butter or olive oil, until translucent. Stir in carrots, chicken and broth. Add seasonings and bring boil. Lower heat to a simmer, simmer for 20 minutes or until carrots are tender. Adjust seasonings, if needed. Bring back up to a boil and add noodles, cooking according to package directions. Taste again, add more salt if needed. Serve nice and hot.

September Challenge – Day 10

Today is a better day. A new day without any diet mistakes in it…yet. Yesterday was not good. I only did a 20 minute workout. I had a bagel and cream cheese for lunch and I had a cocktail in the evening. NOT GOOD. Well, my home town is on fire and I’m a little worried for my friends and family. Apparently, I do eat my feelings. I must stop looking at Facebook. My life is not found in the media. Yesterday I made the Loch Ness smoothie from Green Thickies. When I looked at the recipe I have on my site I realized that I don’t make my smoothie like that anymore. So, do I update that one or make a new one or just have the link to Green Thickies? Yeah, I’m gonna update the recipe so I have it. I really love this smoothie. I want smoothies that taste good AND healthy. I have found I don’t like smoothies from shops. They are too sweet and they just don’t have enough real food in them for me. I make my own that way I like and stop complaining. Here is the recipe.

Why did I take this picture and then not a picture of the completed smoothie? I don’t know, but I drank the smoothie so no picture. Maybe next time.

September Challenge – Day 8

Feeling stronger! I love when working out feels good! Like “I can do this” instead of “this hurts, I don’t like it”. I did the whole T-Tapp workout in one session. And now I’m having my mango green smoothie. I love this smoothie. It’s so easy and my daughter will drink it. Of course then I don’t have a smoothie for tomorrow, but mothers make sacrifices.

Coconut Mango Smoothie

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 4 pitted dates
  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed*(optional)
  • 2 scoops collagen powder or protein powder, unflavored
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 cup mango
  • 1 banana

Makes 2 servings, unless you share.

*I’ll use different seeds if I’m seed cycling. Flax, sesame, pumpkin, or sunflower all work. 1 tablespoon for the little seeds and 2-3 for the larger seeds like the pumpkin.

I feel good! Please, let this last!

September Challenge – Day 4

It’s Friday! I am so unmotivated! So far I have done the 20 minute T-Tapp workout. I just made my smoothie and it’s already 9:30am. Not a great start since I wake up at 6:20.

This beet smoothie is so pretty!

But it tastes like beets. And it made so much! I like beets, especially with honey mustard, but drinking beets isn’t so enjoyable. And the more stuff I add the bigger the smoothie will grow. Big breath. Not freaking out over a smoothie. Will the world end if I throw out the rest of this smoothie? Will my mother come back from the grave and make me finish it? Well, she might, she hated to waste food. That sounds macabre, but it made me laugh. Mama would tell me that I am a grown woman and if I don’t want to drink the smoothie then don’t drink the smoothie. I will drink this one glass and then try something else. I really think that chocolate is the only flavor strong enough to redeem this smoothie. Goodbye beautiful pink smoothie. Now it tastes of chocolate covered beets. Yup, I’m done!

If you don’t mind the taste of beets just search Pinterest for beet smoothies, there are a ton; way more than there should be.

I have to go brush my tongue.

And continue my T-Tapp.

September Challenge – Day 3

Really? Is it only the 3rd? One week at a time, one day at a time, one meal at a time. Yesterday didn’t go very well. I didn’t want to make fish for dinner so I used the excuse that it wasn’t thawed out enough. I made my kids frozen pizza. I ate leftovers. Not bad, I mean I had elk, beets and spinach. I wanted a piece of pizza so bad, but I didn’t have any. Before I get too full of myself I have to confess that I broke. I ate ice cream. Not a dainty, diet scoop, but two big scoops. And I think it is giving me a headache. Maybe migraines will help me give up sugar. So, today I’m drinking the other half of my chocolate covered almond smoothie (so delicious!), lunch will be, hey why not use the fish? Well, it was in the fridge overnight so it is thawed out now. Then I’ll make spaghetti for dinner. Noodles for the kids and roasted veggies for me. Have you tried meat sauce or marinara over roasted veggies? It is pretty good. Food set. Now for exercise.

I haven’t finished my T-Tapp today. I’m 3/4 of the way through the 55 minute workout. I got hungry. I don’t think there is anything wrong with breaking up my workout into 15-20 minutes chunks. I have no science to back that up, but I’m going with it.

I better plan for tomorrow. You never know I might even follow through. Friday will be my first weigh in. I don’t think there will be much change, I mean it hasn’t even been a week. I’m not too concerned with the scale though, I’m more interested in not having to buy bigger clothes.

Today:

  • Chocolate covered almond smoothie
  • Halibut fingers
  • spaghetti

Friday:

  • berry beet smoothie
  • Leftovers
  • Meatloaf muffins

Saturday:

  • Spaghetti squash “oatmeal”
  • shakshuka with plantains
  • Grilled chicken legs

Sunday:

  • leftover shakshuka
  • hamburgers
  • chicken salad

I have a plan. I have a food plan. Now to add exercise. I can do this!

UPDATE: I have no idea how many fish fingers I thought I would eat for lunch, but I ate 3 1/2.

It was super yummy and I have tons of leftovers. Sorry kids, no spaghetti tonight. We are having fish tacos or fish sammies or plain ol’ fish fingers.

September Challenge – day 2

Oh, my. I am quite sore. Bending over requires grunting or at least a sigh. But I know that tomorrow will be better. I will start feeling stronger and will  be able to workout without wanting to cry. Having my meals planned out has really helped. Perhaps, I can plan out the rest of the week. I remember when I would plan out the whole month, well the dinners anyway. OK, breakfast tomorrow I want a berry smoothie with beets. Lunch will be leftover halibut fingers and for dinner I’ll make meatloaf muffins. I think I’ll share my Aunt Sandi’s Easy Halibut Finger “recipe”. It isn’t a recipe so much as directions.

Baked Halibut Fingers

  • Halibut, salmon, or any other fish fillet
  • olive oil
  • oregano, basil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika
  • bread crumbs, tortilla chips crumbs, or potato chip crumbs

Slice fish into 1 inch, finger length pieces.

Mix seasonings into crumbs and pour into a shallow dish or plate. Pour 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil into shallow dish or plate.

Dip each piece of fish in the oil and then into the crumbs.

Bake on a parchment lined baking sheet at 425 for 10-15 minutes.

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I know it’s not really a recipe, but hey this is the way I cook. I guess if anybody cares I could try and figure out how much of this stuff is needed, but I never have the exact amount of protein that is called for in a recipe. And what if you are cooking for 2, or for 10? Oops, rabbit trail. What was I doing? Meal planning. Right.

September Challenge – Day 1

Well, this might be harder than I thought. It took me two hours to do one hour of T-Tapp. My calves and hamstrings apparently haven’t been used for 3 months. I drank my green smoothie at 9 am and by 11:30 was starving. I had egg drop soup for lunch and am making Pioneer Woman’s Drip Beef (minus the butter) for dinner. My children will be having hoagie rolls while my husband and I have our meat with roasted vegetables. 

My main concern will be sugar. I have mentioned my sugar addiction before and I am still fighting it. So far I have had one Keebler grasshopper cookie. ONE cookie! And all I can think about is dessert. I’m trying to find “healthy” sweets on Pinterest. I have a better sweets board. I need a deep breath and an affirmation. “I am sweet enough” (breathe) “I am sweet enough”.  Ok, better. So, how about I figure out what kind of smoothie I want tomorrow.

Chocolate Covered Almond Smoothie

2 servings

  • 1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (I like coconut almond)
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 pitted dates
  • 1/4 cup whole raw almonds
  • 2 tablespoons coconut butter (or 1/4 cup shredded coconut)
  • 2 scoops collagen powder (or protein powder)
  • 1/4 cup roasted cacao nibs*
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cup mango, frozen
  • 1 banana, frozen

Blend ingredients through cacao nibs, add spinach and blend. Then add in frozen fruit, blend until smooth.

*Or use 4 tablespoons of cocoa or cacao powder. Or carob.

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Before adding the spinach

 

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Green Smoothie ready to enjoy

That sounds like an Almond Joy with spinach added. Perfect!

Smoothie for breakfast.  Leftover shredded meat and roasted veggies for lunch and…and um, dinner. I’m thinking baked halibut fingers. Plan for tomorrow: done! Just add in some T-Tapp and I’m set. I might still have to find a “better” sweet thing to make. 

September Challenge

I’m pretty sure my fall clothes will not fit. Like most of the country I ate my way through quarantine. By the time my clothes stopped fitting it was summer and I bought some loose flow-y dresses. But now my kids are going back to school (yea!) and I will have to start wearing real clothes.

It isn’t just my waistline that concerns me either. I need to get my health in check. I have inherited high cholesterol from my mother. She was never overweight, I’m not overweight (yet), but my doctor is concerned about my cholesterol and there is no way I’m going to start taking cholesterol medicine at the age of 40. I really never want to be at a point in my life where I take daily medication.

So, it is a new month, a new school year and a great time to get serious about my diet and exercise. I’m starting T-Tapp again. It has always worked for me, if I DO it. My plan is to do the 55 minute T-Tapp workout 5 days a week for 2 weeks. If I can fit into my jeans I will drop down to the 20 minute workout.

Also, back to Green Thickies every morning. And possibly for lunch as well. I love smoothies for breakfast, but having another one for lunch may be more than I can do. Hopefully it will be soup weather soon and I can fill up on veggies that way.

Good plan. Now to start it and stick to it! First up; green thickie recipe.

Mango Ginger Green Thickie –

2 servings

  • 1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 pitted dates
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1 scoop collagen powder (Zint)
  • 2 Tbsp. unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 half cucumber, chopped
  • 1 inch piece fresh ginger
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cup mango
  • 1 banana

Blend ingredients through the coconut until seeds and dates are blended. Add rest of ingredients and blend until smooth. 

 

Well, that should be a good starting recipe. Now I just have to add exercise and more healthy meals and I will be set!

Should I take a before photo? Maybe just for my personal file.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some DAM Ideas

The morning after a migraine is difficult. The pain is dramatically less, but still present. The confusion and body aches are at a peak. Why am I trying to write anything after my migraine last night? Well, I want to have a resource, a protocol, or at least some ideas for coping the “day after migraine”.

1. Make a pot of herbal tea. Something that sounds good like vanilla rooibos, African Nectar or peppermint.

2. Have something to eat. Low or no sugar is best and have protein. Poached eggs and toast. Scrambled egg breakfast sandwich. Mama always wanted dairy, like cottage cheese. 

3. Don’t strain your eyes. Don’t write a blog post. Refrain from social media, reading, knitting. Aunt Sandi recommends laundry, gardening (with a hat and sunglasses), dusting, baking/cooking something you don’t need a recipe for. If you don’t want to move get an audio book. Take breaks!

4. Don’t sabotage yourself. Yes, things need to be done, but stressing out over it will just lead to another migraine. Accept help. Ask for help. Prioritize!

 

That Was Unexpected

I have had a dairy allergy 3/4 of my life. Between the ages of 10 and 20 the allergy seemed to disappear. In college my symptoms reappeared. It can make life a bit challenging and travel can be less than enjoyable.

So, this summer I am going to take a little East Coast tour with my oldest daughter. I know we will have a wonderful time, but I was bummed about not being able to eat pizza in New York or a cheesesteak in Philadelphia. Did I have any options?

I visited my local allergist to see if there was any hope. (Don’t read on if you have an allergy and are still searching for help.) The first thing they did was test me for a dairy allergy. And…it came back negative. It has been close to 15 years since my last allergy test and four years since I had a major reaction. So, sometime in the last four years my allergy disappeared?

The first thing my husband said was “Don’t overdo it.” I may have mentioned the gallons of ice cream, cheesecakes and pizzas I consumed between the ages of 10 and 20. And while I do feel a sense of freedom, I don’t want to gain 20 pounds in the next few months. Also, I trust my body more than a test. Doctors say there is not correlation between dairy and congestion, but singers and actors will disagree. Directors will ask their performers to refrain from dairy before shows. If it affects people with no history of allergies, shouldn’t I be a little more cautious?

So, here is my plan: I’m not really going to change my diet. Now, to be honest I have already tried butter and ice cream and I bought a carton of eggnog and found I no longer like it. Dairy tastes salty to me, which reminds me that it is a bodily fluid from a cow and that removes some of it appeal. Mostly I’m glad to be able to go into a restaurant and order any meal that I would like. I hate to be a hassle and I love the fact that I no longer have to have a private conversation with the server before I order. AND oh, I just thought about Disneyland! I can get all those treats at Disneyland! I can have a meal at any restaurant I choose. I can go on a cruise! Oh dear, it is going to be harder than I thought to keep myself under control.

Just because I can eat these foods does not mean that I should. “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable…”( NASB 1 Corinthians 6:12)