Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Recipe - Cajun Broiled Grouper

cajun broiled grouper
Tonight’s dinner was so easy and so good.  I am not a huge fan of fish but I really enjoy this Cajun Broiled Grouper with yellow carrots, white beans and spinach in an herb sauce , served with a glass of Reisling.
The vegetable mix is frozen - Green Giant Digestive Health.  Look for it in your frozen vegetable aisle.  It is microwaveable in a steamer bag, is only 90 calories per serving and there are two servings per box.  I used both servings.

For the grouper, I used 7 ounces frozen grouper fillets.  Prepare baking sheet with non-stick spray and place fillets in pan. Spray each fillet lightly with I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Spray. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and cajun seasoning. Lay lemon slices on top. Broil fillets on high for 5 - 6 minutes depending on thickness. This is also great with tilapia. Calories for 7 ounces is 245.

So this dinner took me about 10 minutes to prepare from start to finish and the total calories for dinner, including the wine was 605.  If you leave off the wine it is only 425 calories.  Healthy, low calorie, fast, easy, and good.  That’s my kind of meal.
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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

And On The Menu Today . . .

 . . . only healthy stuff.  Do you ever just get tired of hearing yourself whine?  That's where I was yesterday.  So after posting yesterday's thoughts, I decided to kick my butt in gear and get back to focusing on healthy, not just on calories.  I always feel better when I focus on health and not just on the weight.

Yesterday was pretty good although it was a little heavy on the carbs - blueberries and vanilla greek yogurt for breakfast, Kashi Lemongrass Coconut Chicken frozen dinner for lunch, wheat thins and hummus for a snack, a chocolate vitatop for another snack, and chicken/apple sausages on wheat buns with greek pasta salad for lunch.  I also had a KIND Coconut and Almond bar right before I went to dance class.  I ended the day at just over 1900 calories, a little higher than planned, about 150 calories over my goal.

After dance I stopped by the market to pick up some more healthy snacks for the week.  I ran across some buttermilk cheese that sounded interesting, picked out some pretty plums and apples and stocked up some hummus from my favorite local restaurant.  I really try to keep healthy snacks around that are easy to take with me to work so I can keep my regular meals smaller.

Today was also pretty healthy.  Breakfast was a canadian bacon and raw spinach on a sandwich thin and I added some of the buttermilk cheese.  Interesting flavor, kind of mild with a cheddar flavor.  For a morning snack I had raw broccoli and sliced cucumbers with hummus.  So yummy.  Lunch was organic turkey, raw spinach, buttermilk cheese and Dijonnaise on Ezekiel sesame bread.  I am generally not a sandwich eater but this was so good and very satisfying.  It's almost 3pm and I still have over 800 calories left for today.  I have my cooler that right now holds a KIND snack bar, a small cucumber salad, and some kale salad so a snack later before dance class should not throw me off my targets.  And dinner after dance class tonight should be ok because I am having sushi with the girls.

I feel better and I am not hungry.  There is something about eating healthy that just makes you feel good.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Going With The Flow

It's the same 4 pounds.  Over and over and over for the last 2 months.  I am fluctuating between 238 and 242.  The same 4 pounds.

I'm actually ok with that.  Ok, not really.  I know it is completely natural to be frustrated when you are not really losing.  But realistically I also know why the scale is stuck there.

I have been going with the flow.  The flow of out of town trips and weddings and graduations and celebrations and guests and all the food that comes with all of those things.  Add to that a reduced exercise schedule because of travel. I'm not making excuses or reasons for giving in to temptation.  No guilt about it either.  This is real life.  It all adds up to basically maintaining the weight.

I have not decided that maintaining is a bad thing.  Losing would be better but I also think that it is good to control what you can, when you can, and to enjoy the rest.  Just don't lose control. The key is not giving up or giving in.

I know myself well when it comes to this journey of weight loss.  Every time I have lost a noticeable amount and start to get compliments, I get comfortable.  When I get comfortable, I stop trying.  When I stop trying, I gain the weight back.

But this time I am determined to not go there.  I am staying with my program.  I am counting my calories and continuing to attend my dance and yoga classes 6 hours each week.  I will not give up and I will not give in.  I will continue to lose the weight albeit at a slightly slower pace than before.  This is a life changing experience and I know I will have to do this for the rest of my life.  And I'm still learning how to do it.

Are any of you struggling with that same crazy summer plateau?  Let's share ideas in the comments on how you cope with it and make it through without losing your focus. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Back From The Edge

Last week was a little bit of a challenge.  I attended a week long work conference in St. Louis.  There was a lot of food over the week and it came frequently.  I don't think I over ate and I focused mostly on eating lots of veggies but I did eat desserts and other things I would not have eaten otherwise. 

The stress level was kind of high.  It was a long week . . . meetings, training attended and trainings led, performances (I was Oprah), awards, top executive visitor . . . you get the picture.  By Thursday, I was so ready to go home.

Our flight out of St. Louis was delayed by an hour.  We knew we were going to cut our connection very, very close so we decided to eat at the airport before we flew out.  I shared a pizza with another friend.  Finally, we took off and headed for Atlanta.

Our flights in Atlanta were the last flights of the day.  My flight was at 10:50pm and the other girls' was at 10:52pm.  We knew that if we missed our connection, we would be stuck for the night.  Our plane arrived in Atlanta and we were not able to pull into the gate for about 10 minutes.  As we exited the plane, we found we were on concourse A and had to go to concourse D.  We ran, took the train, and ran some more.  We arrived at our gates at 10:45 and the doors were closed.  They would NOT let us on.  Seriously???? But they did put our luggage on the plane.  Ummmm, how thoughtful of them.  We would be staying in Atlanta for the night but our luggage would make it home.

I rented the other girls a car to drive home to Alabama and called my daughter, who now lives in Atlanta, to come pick me up.  She had been wishing all night that I would miss the connection so I could stay with her.  I'm not sure she considered what I would smell like the next day since I had no clothes or toothbrush or clean underwear but at least she could take care of me.  We arrived at her apartment at 1:30am.

A friend drove to Atlanta on Friday to bring me home.  Of course, we all had dinner before leaving at a wonderful restaurant in Old Roswell.  It was amazing and we took off for Knoxville around 10pm.  We were stuck in traffic outside Chattanooga for one hour and finally arrived at the Knoxville airport to pick up my car around 2am on Saturday. 

However, I couldn't get out of the parking lot.  There was only one booth open and it had a sign on the window that said "back in 20 minutes".  Ummmmm, really?  I waited.  I moved the cones from the automated lanes and tried to pay but the machines were broken.  I wondered when I had pissed off Karma?

Finally, after 25 minutes, I called information on my cell phone and got the number for airport security.  They went and found the booth worker.  He came barrelling across a median on a golf cart, obviously angry.  He unlocked the door, went into the booth and slammed the door.  He couldn't get the window open which made him MORE angry.  Finally, he got it open.  Lucky for me! The officer was trying to carry on a conversation with him and "dude" was so rude.  He never apologized or even spoke to me.  RUDE!  It was 3am when I got home, ready to just fall into bed.

I remembered as I walked in and the temperature was the same as outside that I needed to call the air conditioner repairman.  I went into my kitchen to set my purse down and there was about an inch of water on the floor and towels were floating on top of it.  My water/ice line for the refridgerator had sprung a very small leak and my son had put towels down to soak it up.  Of course that was about 12 hours before when he left for work and my kitchen was now flooded.  As I held back tears, I picked up the towels and put them in the sink.  I went to get more towels and soaked up some more water.  I went to the sink with an armload of towels again, slipped on the wet floor and went down.

I cannot repeat here the words that came out of my mouth.  Lots of inappropriate words.  I got the mess cleaned up and turned the water off under the sink.  I found 3 fans and pointed them all at my bed.  I turned them on "high" and fell into the bed.  Ahhhhhhh, sleep.

It would be a lie if I said I didn't eat like crazy that weekend.  I spend most of Saturday picking up my luggage from the airport, calling repairmen and setting up appointments and just laying on my behind.  And eating.  And eating.  And eating.

Monday was another day.  Back to work and back to healthy eating.  I jumped right back into my routine and ended the day having consumed 1541 calories and burned 2100 calories.  I felt in control again and it felt good.  Today has been good too.

I think I can do this.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Stupid, Stupid, Stupid

After a few weeks of eating slightly over my calories, I have had a really good week.  I write it all down, the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Then today, I did something stupid, stupid, stupid.  I hate it when that happens.

It was a crazy day at work.  We have a huge conference next week and all the last minute prep was overwhelming.  It was stressful but I was handling it with humor and a list.  I forgot to bring my lunch so I ran to pick up some KFC grilled chicken.  I was well within my calorie limit with this choice and glad that I had more than enough calories left over for dinner.  Today is a day that I don't exercise so I am always pretty careful about my food on those days.

Later a friend called and said she was going to run by Sonic and pick up her lunch and a chocolate milkshake.  Oooooooohhhhhhh, milkshake!  I asked her to bring me a small chocolate milkshake.  Yum.

She walked in with the milkshake and I tasted it.  SO good but . . . what is that taste?  This is not just chocolate.  She tasted it.  Chocolate peanut butter.  Wow.  Even better.  I slurped that yummy concoction down and finished some more conference prep. 

Later I pulled up my Daily Plate on to record my decadent treat.  WHAT THA??????????????  A small chocolate peanut butter milkshake from Sonic is 678 freakin' calories!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh my goodness.  I typed it into my Daily Plate and I have one, yes one, calorie left for dinner.  Stupid, stupid, stupid.

The moral of the story . . . take the time to look it up before you decide to eat it.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Trying Yoga

My dance classes are working and I love them.  I like them so much that I was ready to add some additional classes.  I do Sizemology Dance on Mondays and Saturdays, Zumba on Wednesdays and Choreography on Thursdays.  I needed something for Tuesdays when some of my friends in Sizemology  mentioned a yoga class they were interested in attending. 
First of all, my past experiences with yoga have not been positive.  In fact, I kind of hated it.  Again, I am not a particularly “still” person and, although I was raised in a sort of New Age environment, I don’t generally respond to the New Age type of thought.  But my friends explained that this was different, this teacher was different.  So I decided to try it. 

I was pleasantly surprised.  I am pretty flexible and always have been, even for a fat girl, so the poses were challenging but not painful.  The instructor, Angie, told us to trust our body and let it guide us.  Angie is a Reiki practitioner and throughout the hour, she would walk through the class and gently touch the students, sometimes to slightly adjust the pose.  I am never comfortable with strangers touching me but Angie’s touch was comforting.

Angie’s melodic, soft voice was soothing.  She talked throughout the whole class, sometimes explaining how to do a pose, sometimes talking about energy and healing and spirituality.  Again, I am not one that normally responds to this type of thing but there was something about Angie’s voice, her excitement, the flow of her words that was so relaxing, even as I was sweating through a pose. 

Before I knew it, the hour was over.  I felt amazingly worn out, powerful and relaxed at the same time.  I went home that night and bought a class card.  And I went back this Tuesday.  I will be adding the Saturday class this week.

So now I am dancing four hours a week and doing yoga two hours each week.  I feel like I am getting into a very well rounded exercise routine that works on all parts of my body.  But the best thing about doing all that is that I get so much more than the calorie burn.  I love dancing and am learning that I love this type of yoga.  And it makes me a happier person.   That goes way beyond the weight loss.
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