Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Daiya Trick

Does anyone else have this problem?  I like to eat the Daiya vegan cheese right out of the bag.  When I make pizza, quesadillas or any other recipe, I tend to steal bites of the cheese right out of the bag.  I probably easily eat an extra 1-2 servings of the cheese this way.  I really like the way it tastes and it's salty so I just keep eating more and more of it.  But I've figured out a solution to this.  I just always keep it frozen.  It doesn't compromise the taste of the cheese and I don't like to eat it when it's frozen.  Win Win!!!  I know this was a short post, but I was just thinking about how this simple solution keeps me in check. 

Do you have any tricks that keep you from eating too much, bingeing or keeping yourself on track?  Have a great day!

Friday, January 4, 2013

My "Carrot"

So, I have discovered over the past few months that I love to wear dresses.  I never thought I was a "dress" kind of person but I really feel more confident and attractive when I wear them.  I have also discovered this website and I have spent WAY too much money on dresses from it.  So, I am working really hard right now not to spend extra money since I am broke.  However, I have found that I have worked hard towards my weight loss goals in the past when I have a prize or reward to work towards......a dangling carrot, so to speak.  So, this is my "carrot":

(Dress at

I have posted a picture of this dress on my fridge and I also glued a picture of it in my notebook where I put grocery lists, meal plans and produce that we need to use.  I am trying to keep a visual reminder of what I am working for.  In all honesty, this dress is actually a lot more than just a dress.  I am not just working for a dress.  I am working for how I feel when I wear dresses.  I feel more confident and attractive.  When I work hard towards my health and fitness goals, I feel so much better about myself and my self esteem is so much better.  I would have never dreamed of wearing a dress when I was 265 pounds.....I also wouldn't have been able to wear the dresses from Modcloth because I wouldn't have been able to fit into them.  That's another motivator for me.  I want to be able to go into any store I want and buy clothes.  I don't want to have to go to speciality stores to buy clothes.  I want to feel good about what I am wearing.  I am 32 years old and I feel like I have just discovered my personal style.  I love wearing retro dresses with cute jewelry and accessories.  I want to be able to wear these outfits.  I don't want to have to go back to baggy shirts and jeans all of the time because that's all that will fit me.

So, that's why I post this picture of this dress on my fridge, in my notebook and on my blog.  Because it represents my style, my health and fitness goals and my self esteem.  I want to wear this dress soon!

UPDATE*** I officially weighed in today and like I had anticipated, it was not pretty.....194.6.  But I stepped on the scale so now I can just move forward.  When I lose 5 pounds, I can buy this dress for myself.  So when I hate 189.6, this dress will be mine.  Then I will set another 5 pound reward goal for myself to keep myself moving forward.  So, here I go.......

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year's Day 2013

I guess New Year's is as good a time as any to get back with it.  I haven't blogged since July!  Every time I sat down to the computer to do a blog entry, I just didn't have it in me.  So, I just gave myself a break.  I didn't completely abandon all of my health and fitness goals over the past several months, but I definitely lost the spark that I had before.  I stuck with my workouts at the gym and I ate healthy most of the time, but my weight is definitely not what I want it to be.  I haven't weighed since getting back from Christmas vacation....I am going to give myself a little more time for that.  I know it won't be pretty but I would rather be doing something about it before actually seeing the number.  

Rather than spending a lot of time going on and on about how weight loss is so hard, I will just sum it up by saying that I loosened the reigns some and it shows.  I am going to post a series of pictures of me from this fall.  The first picture was taken just last night at New Year's Eve:

(Beka and me at Plant-New Year's Eve)

(Sometime in October)

(Both of the pictures above were from a fun photo shoot that we did back in late September right after I dyed my hair red.  I still have the red hair and I plan to keep it for awhile!)

(I got to go home 3 times this fall (including Christmas break) to see my family!  It was great getting to see them so much but this is part of the reason for being unsuccessful with my weight loss.)

(A couple of things I am proud of from this fall is sticking to my fitness goals for the most part.  I continued to go to the gym almost everyday and I also tried to get in some hiking especially while the leaves were pretty.  The first picture was taken after a Zumba class and the second picture was taken after I got my heart rate up to 184-the highest ever for me!)  

(The above 3 pictures are just from different times over the past couple of months.)  

So, here I am ready to get 100% fully committed to my health again.  I plan to post more and I plan to read your blogs more often too because that's how I stay focused.  Here's to a healthy, happy 2013.  

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Being Frugal and Healthy (quick post)

Check this out!  I managed to score an awesome deal on Zevia soda and now look at this stockpile....haha!  It looks like I am preparing for the apocalypse!  :)

Have you found any good deals lately?  Do you have any frugal tips for being healthy and thrifty?

Monday, July 9, 2012

Protein Bars Galore

Well, my plan was to blog more now that I am on my summer break but as you can see, that hasn't happened.  However, I have been doing a lot more cooking including making new recipes.  One of the things I have been making a lot of is protein bars.  All kinds of protein bars......gingerbread "Clif" bars based off of this recipe got everything started.  Then I made Blueberry chocolate chip, pumpkin chocolate chip, and peanut butter banana chocolate chip.  I am still working on getting it just right, but it's been a lot of fun experimenting with the recipes and making lots of new foods.

(Blueberry Chocolate Chip Protein bars with soy yogurt and fresh blueberries)

 I have also been making some overnight oats after getting inspired by a friend who makes them for herself.  Along with cooking a lot of new food, I also rejoined Weight Watchers.  I decided it was time to have more structure and accountability again.  Counting calories on my own just wasn't working for me anymore.  Hopefully paying money, going to meetings and having that accountability will be just what I need.

As soon as I get the protein bars just like I want them, I will post a recipe.  But as you can see based on this picture below, they still have some work (notice the cracks in them!):

(My protein bars:  a work in progress)

What have you been up to this summer?  Are you reaching your summertime goals?  I hope so!  

Monday, June 18, 2012

Berry Banana Pancakes

My summer break is officially here!  Hopefully I will have more time now to blog!  I have been wanting to blog about this pancake recipe for awhile now.  Strawberries are about over for the season, but I definitely took advantage of all of the delicious local strawberries this year.

(Strawberries from the farmers market)

I have posted other pancake recipes in the past, and I have mentioned that I always top my pancakes with yogurt and berries instead of maple syrup because I can feel so much more satisfied with the yogurt and berries than the syrup.  Below is my recipe for berry banana pancakes:

Berry Banana Pancakes 
(Serves 1-2)

-1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
-1 1/2 tsp baking powder
-1/8 tsp salt (just a pinch)
-3 packets stevia sweetener 
-1/2 banana (mashed)
-1/2 tsp vanilla
-1/2 cup almond or other nondairy milk
-1/2 cup frozen or fresh blueberries
-vegan yogurt (optional)
-additional strawberries and blueberries (optional)

Mix all dry ingredients together.  In a separate bowl, mash the banana and then add all other wet ingredients to the mashed banana.  Then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients.  Once ingredients are mixed, fold in the blueberries.  Heat up a griddle or pan and make sure it's nonstick or spray it with some cooking spray or oil it.  With a ladle, make into pancakes on the griddle.  Cook on one side for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom side.  Then flip over and cook for another 2-3 minutes or until golden brown.  Top pancakes with additional berries, a chopped up banana and vegan yogurt.  

Sometimes I like to make this recipe for dinner too!  I really feel like you can eat pancakes anytime of the day.  :)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Good Life Cafe: Columbia, SC

For our anniversary trip, we stopped in Columbia, SC to eat at the Good Life Cafe.  The restaurant is all raw and vegan.  I will be honest, I have never really been a fan of raw restaurants.  I feel like they are super expensive and the portions are usually teeny tiny.  I often still feel hungry after leaving the restaurant.  I know that's probably just me since I tend to be a "volume eater" as my former Weight Watchers leader used to say about herself.  But since R has become a gluten free vegan, she loves going to raw restaurants because she can usually choose from anything on the menu.  When I noticed that there was a raw vegan restaurant in Columbia and sort of on our way to Congaree National Park, I decided to surprise her with this restaurant. 

I was pleasantly surprised with the Good Life Cafe.  I felt like they had a lot of great menu options and their prices weren't too ridiculously expensive.  I know that raw restaurants are going to naturally ( pun intended) be more expensive because of the amount of produce, nuts and other healthy ingredients, but it's still hard to be able to afford the bill at many of these restaurants.  Also, many of the raw restaurants are also trendy and that seems to make them more expensive by default.  But this restaurant was laid back and comfortable to be in. 

Anyway, I was very impressed with the menu selections and what we ordered.  We started off with a spinach dip and flax crackers (I did not get a picture of this).  This was very tasty and was a great appetizer.  Then I ordered the raw taco salad and R ordered the pimentoless wrap with 2 sides.  I believe the sides were a kale salad and a broccoli salad.  Below you will see the pictures of our entrees.  (Also, in the background of the picture of me, you will see either Dr. McDougall or Dr. Fuhrman on the tv!  They had vegan tv in the restaurant!)

(Raw Taco Salad)

(Pimentoless wrap with side salads)

As you can see, they gave us plenty of food!  (Yes, I did eat every bit of my salad!)  I felt completely full and satisfied with this meal.  However, it didn't stop us from buying some of their desserts to go.  They had all of their desserts in a cooler and they are already in to go containers.  They weigh their desserts out so some of them were small and some were large and all different prices.  We got one container of the chocolate orange cookies, one container of the blueberry cobbler and we each got our own container of the Moon Pie.  We both thought that sounded the most exciting!  The Moon Pie was very expensive though!  My container was over $8 and R's was over $10....yikes!  We had a cooler in the car so we saved the Moon Pies until we got to Charleston.  Even though we had them in the cooler, I don't think it was quite cold enough because both of our Moon Pies kind of melted.  All of the desserts were delicious though.  I loved the Moon Pie the most (because it had chocolate) and then the blueberry cobbler second best. 

If we had just ordered meals at this restaurant, it would have been completely affordable.  It was because we ordered an appetizer, 2 meals and then desserts to go that made this dining experience a lot more expensive.  But it was a special occasion so we decided to live it up!  :)  If you happen to be in the Columbia, SC area and you need a place to eat, I would highly recommend the Good Life Cafe and I would get the raw taco salad.....very, very tasty!  Plus, all of the people working were very friendly and helpful.  You don't find that everywhere either!  Give the Good Life Cafe a try!