Sunday, February 16, 2014

squats, squats and more squats

Earlier this week I started a 30 day squat challenge. Today is my 7th day, which means 80 squats. I just have one word to describe the first week of this squat challenge…ouch! I am really feeling the burn!

During this challenge, you do a predetermined amount of squats for three days in a row, one rest day then another 3 days of more squats, another rest day and so on until the 30 days are over.
On the first day, I had to do 50 squats, then 55 the next day and 60 the following day. I was so relieved for the first rest day to come. I have a feeling that I will look forward to those rest days for the remainder of the challenge. For the past few days, I did between 70 and 80 squats. Next week, over 100!  More and more squats will be added to each day. For the final five squat days, I have to do over 200 squats each day, with the last day having the most at 250!

I realized that I need to push myself to do as many squats in a row as I can, although I think my limit is 50 consecutive squats. Hopefully I can build that number higher as the challenge continues, although I doubt I will be able to do 250 squats consecutively.

If you are interested in doing this squat challenge, below is the plan! Enjoy!!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

A long road ahead

I have decided that I want to embark on a new journey. I have come to my decision after truly enjoying brainstorming ideas and writing these blogs.

I have decided that I want to write a book about my story and having healthier lifestyle. Since I decided that I want to do this, I have realized that I have a long, long road ahead of me.
I am only in the beginning stages, but I have already brainstormed a list of topics.

I look forward to writing, organizing and more brainstorming.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

It’s soup-er delicious!


I love, love, love everything about soup!

I have found that many canned soup, although tasty and delicious, are very high in sodium. When I do buy canned soup, I look for the lower sodium ones, while also looking at the nutritional label. I like to share a can of soup whenever I can because I have learned that there is not just one serving in a can. Possibly 2 or maybe 3 servings.

If I have more the ingredients available, I love to make soup. I have made all kinds of soup and very rarely do I follow a recipe. I have used the following ingredients to make different kinds of soup: dried beans; fresh, frozen and canned vegetables; brown rice; wheat noodles; barley and low sodium broth.  I never realized how much I really like barley!

Below is a picture of a low sodium Corn and Barley soup!

 

I have made tomato basil soup, many kinds of vegetable soups, Acorn and Pear soup, Butternut Squash soup, bean chili and just recently I made a Christmas Taco Bean soup.  

I have named this soup after the ingredients that I used. I used low sodium taco seasoning, frozen green peas, red kidney beans, green split peas, corn, great northern beans and barley. My idea was to serve this festive soup on Christmas.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Night time snacking

Night time snacking is my weakness. I can do very well during the day, but night time can be the worst.

I have found that I need to stay busy and distract myself from potential night time cravings.

I started turning off the kitchen lights at night. It symbolizes to me that the kitchen is “closed” for tonight and whatever I want to eat, I’ll just have to wait until the morning. This trick seems to work very well for me.

Sometimes, I still feel my self-control diminishing, I have to turn to something else. Recently, I have started to turn on the Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods. This show instantly curves my appetite.  Not only do I not want anything to eat anymore, sometimes I can’t even finish drinking my water.

If you have never watched this show, try it!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Tis the Season...

This time of the year is quite difficult to maintain an exercise routine and continue to eat healthy, however I am still going strong.

Last year was the first year where I watched what I was eating during the holidays. I underestimated how difficult it actually was. I faced the challenges of eating healthy while being faced with the traditional holiday temptations. I remained strong and determined and actually lost weight during the holiday season.

This year will be no different.

I will be surrounding myself with healthier options including a bowl full of fruit and a veggie platter. Blackberries were on sale at the store, so I stocked myself up! I chopped some vegetables up last night. They are already for snacking during the days to come. I found a way to enjoy the holiday flavors without any extra calories. I really enjoy coffee and found some Christmas coffee and pumpkin pie coffee that I’ll be enjoying for the next couple of days.

My tennis shoes and workout clothes will be readily available.  Since we recently had a snow/ice storm here in Michigan, outdoor exercise will be limited. Brrr!! See picture below!

 
 
 

 Happy and Healthy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving

I really like the meaning behind the Thanksgiving holiday and setting aside the time to be with family and being thankful for our blessing, however I wish the part of the holiday where we eat until we’re stuffed wasn’t an annual tradition. After we all take the time to truly be thankful, we eat and eat until our “fat pants” are tight, then we take a nap and continue to eat. Usually, I always turn back to my bad eating habits on thanksgiving and the days after until all the leftovers are gone. I’m choosing not to this year. This year, I’m going to be mindful of what I’m eating.

This will also be the first thanksgiving as a Vegetarian. This is will the 2nd year in a row where I have eaten turkey at Thanksgiving. Last year, it was by accident. The time slipped away and I wasn’t in the mood to prepare a Turkey. This year, instead of focusing on the turkey, I am focusing on other foods.

I was at a local farmer’s market recently and I found these Brussel Sprouts! I had never seen Brussel Sprouts on stalks!

 
When it comes to any pie, I just can’t get enough. I’m going to try make a “Healthy” pumpkin pie with less than 5 ingredients AND without a crust. Save the calories, skip the crust. I am also going to make apple pies. I made apple sauce from fresh apples a while ago and I saved the apple skins. I’m going to cook those down, add some spices, portion into egg roll wrappers and bake. I’ve made apple pies before with egg roll wrappers. I’ve also made strawberry, pear and blueberry pies. I cook down whatever fruits and spices I would like, portion into egg roll wrappers and bake for 15 minutes, or until egg roll wrapper was brown at 350 degrees. It’s such an easy way to make a delicious pie.

I was getting nervous about having all the food around and the possibility of being tempted by the foods. I realize I am strong, power and I have a lot of self control. I am determined to make it through this holiday season still losing weight.
Whatever your thanksgiving traditions, I hope you have a great thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Fallin’ in love

I just love this time of the year for running. The weather is just perfect for breaking a sweat. On a recent run, I found myself in the middle of the woods, running a trail that was just covered with leaves. It was a sunny, but chilly day. The trail was absolutely gorgeous. Most of the leaves had already fallen off the trees, but still a few remained on the trees. On that sandy trail, I ran by a lake and ran over a few streams.

As I was running, I noticed I was singing, quite loudly, along to the music. I made sure to stop singing when fellow runners were around, out of respect. I was laughing out loud and just loving the run. I was in a daze and not paying attention to the ground. Before I knew it, I was on the ground. I was running on the trail and tripped over a tree root that was covered by fallen tree leaves. My knees were covered in sand and I couldn’t believe I fell.

After realizing I was on the ground, I quickly looked around the make sure nobody saw. Thankfully, nobody did. I walked for about 30 seconds to make sure I wasn’t injured, then, I walked the 30 seconds back to where I fell and started to run the trail again. Thankfully, there was another runner about 3 minutes away, so if I needed help after the fall, there was help available.

As I started to run again, I told myself to turn the music down (a little) and start to pay more attention to the trail.

I love when running outside seems so fun. It’s such an amazing feeling when you don’t have to push yourself that much and by the time you know it, you’ve already ran over 5 miles.