Friday, March 22, 2013

How many pounds lost equals success?

Tomorrow is the big day! It's video shoot day! I said I wasn't going to blog until after it, but I'm feeling awfully inspired and bloggy tonight (I just made that word up). So here goes.

This week was ROUGH to say the least. It was very taxing emotionally and sent me to a really dark place. I was thrown off early in the week by a conversation with someone who doesn't really know a lot of my history, but hears me talking about health/fitness stuff fairly often- because let's face it.... that's pretty much who I am these days. Basically, this person had asked me how much weight I'd lost and then the reaction was "really? that's it? The way you talk, it sounds like you weighed 800 pounds."

Cue knife in the gut. Wanna twist it a little more?

I found myself trying to justify everything. But the bottom line is that comment made me feel as if I'm just not good enough. That 40 pounds is nothing to be proud of. The challenges I've overcome are nothing to be proud of. And unless I have a big number nearing 100+ pounds, then I need to just shut my mouth. I just kept hearing it over and over again in my head and the self doubt started seeping in. I got to the gym after work and had a pleasant surprise of running into some friends first thing. I was asked about my Fitbook and was saying that it makes me have OCD and the response I got was "I'd have OCD to look like you." (WOAH! Total confidence booster!) and then I ran into someone else I know from there who said "what's new? Other than losing 5 pounds in a week" (which by the way isn't true). Those two statements cheered me up a bit, and then I had hip hop where I pushed myself really hard and was so proud. (*See Note*) But the funny thing is those positive comments aren't what stuck in my head. It's the one negative comment I heard that I keep hearing over and over in my head. Like a broken record.

*I had this plan that I would video a little bit of hip hop for the video. I wanted to get clips of both that and aqua boot camp to include, so I went to the desk to ask if they'd do it for me, but as it turns out I hit another roadblock. In order for that to happen, they have to have everyone in class sign a waiver, which they didn't have prepared. They offered to do it next week. I was feeling frustrated and disheartened and in the end I just decided not to have that part of the video because it's a big old pain. (Weird- even if people aren't even IN the video they still have to sign the waiver).

Between this, the comment I'd heard earlier in the day and the one from my last blog... AND watching the Biggest Loser finale..... it was just too much. I was cracking under the pressure and there was one major question in my mind:
"Why am I even bothering with this success story??" 
A part of me just wanted to call off the whole thing. I'm not at my goal yet. I always told myself I wouldn't celebrate it until I hit that point, and here I am- 6 pounds away from that celebration..... celebrating prematurely. And the funny thing is that the more I thought about it the more I knew it was stupid for me to be upset. But here I was.... upset. And I wasn't entirely sure why. Because from the VERY BEGINNING I said this was for me. FOR ME. Not anyone else, but me. I didn't do it to inspire others. I didn't do it to get a boyfriend. I didn't do it to please my parents. I did it for me.

Yet here I was.... upset because for once, someone wasn't impressed by my hard work. And chalked it up to no big deal because it wasn't a huge loss. But to me, it WAS a huge loss. I overcame obstacle after obstacle to get to this point. I proved to myself that I am a fighter and through it all, I really am proud of myself. Yet for some reason, I cried my way home from the gym that night.

The next few days were still pretty rough, but I have really great friends who gave me pep talk after pep talk and helped me see the light. I still went to the gym every day but I feel like I was still so down in the dumps that they weren't quite what they could be. And then I got a couple signs....

I was driving to work yesterday and  "Catch My Breath" by Kelly Clarkson came on the radio. I've heard this song countless times, but for some reason it caught my attention yesterday.

"Catch my breath, no one can hold me down, I ain't got time for that.
Catch my breath, won't let them get me down, it's all so simple now."

And just like that- it clicked. I have GOT to rise above this. Naturally... I'm a hard headed child and this didn't FULLY kick in until today. :) I only worked half a day today and had to finish shopping for more workout clothes for the video. I started this task about 2 months ago. So I hit up Nike. Ohhhh boy I was like a kid in a candy store! I went in search of pants, and stumbled upon this shirt.... We'll call it sign #2.
Did I buy it? YOU BET I DID!!! It serves as the perfect reminder of why I am doing this. I'm pretty much in love with it.

I did get some pants too. I had quite the interesting experience trying on pants because I started out with Larges (because apparently I still think that's my size?) and ended up buying  a pair of smalls. Hooray!

This week was weird. Full of self doubt but in the end it turned out awesome. Video shoot is tomorrow and I must say I'm pretty nervous about it. Not sure exactly how it's going to go but it should be okay. I have some great plans with friends lined up for after so at least that's good. :) I just need to keep telling myself not to compare myself to others and that my best is good enough. :)

I hope you all had a lovely week and are better at putting up that wall against the haters than I am. Clearly I need to work on that a bit more. :) Have a great weekend!!!!!

~Jessica~

 


Friday, March 15, 2013

Haters Gonna Hate--- A Lesson in Self Motivation

For those of you who have known me for some time you know that this journey has been a very long one for me. Though I have found so much success in my health and fitness efforts, you know that this was not my first attempt. Countless times before I'd attempted to lose weight. And failed. Fell flat on my face. So what was different this time? A few things. Most of the times before when I started it, my reasoning was ALWAYS for someone else. This time it was just for me. And I think this time, I was just ready for it. And it all just clicked. I knew what I had to do. The end. As I began my journey I made it a point to take a picture every week and put it on Facebook. It served as a journal, but also held me accountable. People could see my journey, struggles, successes, what have you. In doing so, people have told me that I inspired them. People I never even dreamed I would inspire. I have been so humbled on how I can inspire someone by just doing what I need to do to better myself. It has been amazing. I want nothing more than to help people better themselves. I love it- it brings out such a passion in me and it keeps me going. Doing the things I never believed I could do help me show others that it IS possible.

When I first started training, I met someone who became one of my biggest inspirations. He became one of my closest friends and every time I felt like giving up or was upset because things were hard, I hit an obstacle or just a daily frustration I would think of how far he had come and my motivation was back. Our lives both took turns and we didn't see each other much or talk as much as we used to.

So I ran into him at the gym today because I got off work early so was there earlier than I usually am. We were chatting before I started my workout and I mentioned I was hoping to talk to one of the fitness managers but he was already gone. He asked why and I said because I needed to talk to him about my success story. (Update: He never received my e-mail, so I sent it again Wednesday evening. I wanted to catch him today to see if he got it, but he wasn't there.) And the rest of the conversation went like this.
Him: Success story?
Me: Yea, I'm going on the success story wall and then we're going to do a video.
Him: Why?
Me: To go on the wall and the website.
Him: Why?
Me: To inspire people. (At this point I was kinda thrown off)
Him: Why? It won't work.
Me: .....what?
Him: Sure, they'll be all into it the first month, but then they'll quit. I used to train 3 ladies here for free. And after a month they quit. One of them said to me "I'm just destined to be fat" and I told her "Yep, you are."
Me: YOU CAN'T SAY THAT!!!!

and the conversation just kept going.

I was thrown off. And I started to get defensive. And mad. And sad. For someone who used to inspire me beyond belief, I was feeling disheartened and even let down a little bit. For the first year of this journey I felt like he was my biggest cheerleader. And now he's telling me that I shouldn't even bother with what I want to do because "it's no use". I've had SO MANY people in my corner. I'm sure there are people out there who doubted that I could come as far as I have, but they weren't vocal about it. So this is my first time dealing with that.

So I had a choice.
1.) I could let his words dictate my future. I could say "yea, he's right. What's the point?" and pack my stuff up and leave. Give up on everything.
2.) I used take his words and let them push me. Motivate me one more time and prove him wrong.

Guess what I chose?

As I ran on the treadmill, I put on my running playlist that I put together for my last 5k (back in September) and I was inspired beyond belief. Here are a few of the songs that got me going.

  • Fighter- Christina Aguilera (this song has been one of my favorites for the past 10 years.)
    "It makes me that much stronger. Makes me work a little bit harder. Makes me that much wiser so thanks for making me a fighter
    But in the end you'll see YOU WON'T STOP ME! I am a fighter. I ain't gonna stop. There is no turning back. I've had enough!"
  • The Fighter- Gym Class Heroes (see a pattern here? haha)
    "Half the population's just waiting to see me fail. Yea right- you're better off trying to freeze hell.
    Until the referee rings the bell. Until both your eyes start to swell. Until the crowd goes home. What we gonna do y'all? Give em hell. Time to hate. Gotta live life til we're dead. Give me scars. Give me pain. Then they'll say to me 'there goes the fighter'
    If I can last 30 rounds there's no reason you should have your head down.
    If you fall, pick yourself up off the floor and when your bones can't take no more remember what you're here for."
    Honestly... I just love that song. It's such an amazing motivator. 
  • Part Of Me- Katy Perry
    "This is the part of me that you're never gonna ever take away from me"
    Honestly... I almost skipped this song because I'm kind of over it. But this line is like my mantra. I am doing this for no one but myself. And people can hate all they want, but they CAN NOT take this part of my life away from me. So bam. 
  • Shut It Down- Pitbull Featuring Akon
    "Can't nothing hold me down. I'm gonna touch the sky."
    This is a song we dance to in Hip Hop. I still remember last February we were dancing to it the night before the anniversary of my car accident and it all clicked that nothing can hold me down. It's become somewhat of a theme song for my life since then. 
Haters
I found this today. Love it.  Use those negative words to fuel the fire! 

Those are a few of my favorite motivating songs. What are your favorites? Have you dealt with "haters" and what did you do/say to them? I hope you all had a great week. How are you working out this weekend to counter all the green beer you may be drinking? :) 

~Jessica~

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Lessons Learned

I've said it before and I'll say it again right now. More likely than not, I will probably have to say it again in the future. I am not perfect. This is a journey and my journey will never be over. For me it started 28 months ago. I have learned a lot, made a lot of changes to my life, but by no means am I perfect. I stumble. A LOT. Old (bad) habits die HARD. In fact, I'm starting to believe maybe they never die.

There has been A LOT of stress in my life lately. The healthiest way I deal with stress is getting it out at the gym. Fantastic! Have you ever slammed those medicine balls down on the ground as hard as you can 30 times in a row??? That's my favorite way to get rid of stress! With that being said, sometimes (though I really hate to admit it) I deal with stress by eating. And eating. And eating. I imagine that's how I got to where I used to be.*

*Where I used to be. Found this picture of me from my college years. Woah.



When I really focus on counting calories (both burned and consumed) I do really well and I can even budget for the things that I "shouldn't" be eating, but crave sometimes (chocolate. my biggest weakness. in life).


But when I don't count.... oh boy. I really DON'T count. When I was training, there would be times that I would quit logging my consumed because it is time consuming and a PAIN! And my trainer would say "Jessica, why aren't you logging your food?" How does she know this stuff?! Another reason I called her diablo.... But I digress.

Pesky stress. A few weeks ago I was so stressed and I'd been craving ice cream for WEEKS. WEEKS! So I finally gave in and bought a pint of Ben & Jerry's Fro-Yo Chocolate Fudge Brownie. Wanna hear the funniest part? I don't even like ice cream!!! I mean, it's VERY rare that I ever eat it. Maybe once or twice in the summer. Now, I still have some of that pint in my freezer so at least I didn't eat it all in one sitting (small success, my friends). But I bought it. Funny story- I just read that the Fro-Yo is sometimes WORSE for you than the ice cream. Fantastic.

When you fail to plan, you plan to fail! Lucky for me, I'm pretty good at planning my meals. And sometimes even that doesn't help me. Friday I'd brought my lunch to work with me. My healthy, low-calorie lunch. It was in the fridge in the staff lounge. My schedule changed for the day and my lunch break wasn't until 1:00. Lunch for the kiddos is at 11:30. By the time lunch rolled around I was starving. STARVING. I know what you're thinking. Jessica, the solution is simple. Call someone to step in the classroom for you while you go heat up your healthy lunch. Easy. Yes, I know this. But "don't wanna inconvenience anyone else" Jessica got the best of me. So I thought, oh I'll just have some corn with the kids to hold me over. Which morphed into, okay maybe corn and a chicken taco/burrito (whatever it is, I'm never really sure haha). Which morphed into 1.5 of those suckers. Which leads me to my next revelation story.
I was watching The Biggest Loser last week when the contestants go back home and are faced with the challenges of home. The part that really resonated with me was when Jeff and his friends all went out. All his friends were getting super unhealthy foods while Jeff sat there eating a salad. I was really mad at his friends- it struck me that they weren't being supportive and like they were flaunting it all in Jeff's face. And just like Jeff was in my head, he said he wasn't mad at them- they don't have to watch what they eat. They don't face the same problems he does. They don't have a food addiction. A food addiction. 
This stuck with me. Do I have a food addiction? Possibly. It could explain why I feel tons of anxiety when I'm in the classroom during lunch time. (Usually my break is during lunch- thank goodness). I have to physically keep myself busy to avoid eating. It probably doesn't help that a lot of the time the foods being served are those comfort foods that remind me of my childhood (sloppy joes, spaghetti, mac & cheese, etc.). So after I ate school lunch on Friday I was super disappointed in myself. I did go to the gym (for the 6th day in a row I may add), but left my dang headphones in my car but still did my best. And didn't feel better. :(

There was supposed to be THE STORM OF THE CENTURY on Saturday so I had planned on going grocery shopping Friday night so I could do food prep on Saturday. Yea, that didn't happen since I was so exhausted. And good thing, because this is what accumulated from that huge snow storm they predicted.

Most pathetic blizzard ever predicted.
Unfortunately when I woke up on Saturday I was not feeling great. And I wasn't even all that surprised. I'd been waking up with a sore throat for the past week, but it had been going away within a few hours and I tried not to think too much of it. Still in the back of my mind, I kind of knew that a sickness was on the horizon. Saturday was supposed to be my day of rest, but I'd found some workouts on Pinterest I wanted to try and I had a feeling I'd try them out on this "day of rest". Except I felt awful. My stomach hurt. My head hurt. My throat hurt. I was EXHAUSTED. So I spent most of the day in bed catching up on shows on my laptop since my tv is broken. And then I took a 2 hour nap. I am not good at slowing down. I'm even worse at resting for an entire day. I NEED TO BE PRODUCTIVE. Obviously that didn't happen. 

So that meant I had to do grocery shopping, food prep, and laundry all today. And guess who didn't make it to the gym either? I also woke up feeling worse. It's pretty much a full blown cold at this point. I'm nice and light headed, and quite irritable as I thought I was going to punch everyone I encountered at the grocery store today. Oops. So I'm not sure what that means for my working out plan for the week. I guess I'll take it day by day. And I have conferences on Tuesday so maybe after that I'll be able to relax and not be stressed out. :) 

I spent about 4 hours in my kitchen today and as promised here are the recipes!

CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP  <~~~~ That'll help me get better right?! 
2 C water
1 (32-ounce) carton fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 C prechopped onion
1/2 C prechopped celery
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 medium carrot, chopped
6 ounces fusilli pasta (you can use any pasta- I used whole wheat egg noodles)
2 1/2 C shredded skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast (I just put a chicken breast in the crockpot on high for a while and then shredded it)
2 Tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Combine 2 cups water and chicken broth in a microwave-safe dish, and microwave at HIGH for 5 minutes. 

While broth mixture heats, heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion and next 4 ingredients; saute 3 minutes or until almost tender, stirring frequently. Add hot broth mixture and pasta; bring to a boil. Cook 7 minutes or until pasta is almost al dente. Stir in chicken; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated. Stir in parsley. Yield: 6 servings (serving size: about 1 cup).

Calories 237   Fat 4.8g (sat 1g, mono 2.4g, poly 0.9g)   Protein 22.9g  Carb 23.9g   Fiber 1.7 g Chol 50mg   Iron 1.8mg   Sodium 589 mg   Calc 28mg
Source: Cooking Light Desk Calendar


SKINNY SLOW COOKER CREAMY CHICKEN
1.5 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
8 oz fat free cream cheese
1 package frozen broccoli
1 can fat free cream of chicken soup
1/2 C water
1 package italian dressing mix

Place chicken in bottom of slow cooker.

Mix dressing mix and water together, and then pour over your chicken in the slow cooker.

Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours. Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred. Leave liquid stock in slow cooker. Mix together soup and cream cheese. Pour cream cheese mixture into slow cooker and mix with chicken stock. Stir broccoli into slow cooker mixture. Add chicken back to slow cooker and mix well. 
Turn to high and cook until heated- about 30 minutes

Source: Skinny Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken- Skinny Mom (This website has changed my life. So many great recipes!)

In addition to those, I prepped my fruits and veggies and baked a bit for a package that is going out this week. I made banana bread and pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. These are 2 of my favorite things to bake. I love em. Other people love em. SO GOOD! 

BANANA BREAD (Grandma's recipe, but no one makes it as good as she does)
Prepare a 9x5x3/4 inch bread by oiling and lightly flouring

In a small bowl measure and mix well:
2 C flour (1/2 whole-wheat)
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
Set aside

In a larger bowl, measure and mix well:
1/2 C salad oil
3/4 C sugar
3 Tbsp milk
1/2 C egg substitution
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 tsp vanilla

Add the flour mixture to the larger bowl and mix together well, but do not overbeat. Pour into prepared bread pan and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the middle of the loaf comes out clean. Cool on rack, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and place bread on rack to continue cooling. 

*This is the healthy version. If you'd like the "unhealthy" version (though I'm not sure why you would), increase the sugar to 1 cup, use 2 eggs, and use whatever flour you want. 

This made 3 loaves of bread. 



PUMPKIN CHOCOLATE CHIP MUFFINS
2 1/2 C all-purpose flour
2 C. sugar (or brown sugar)
1/2 C. whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 egg
3/4 C egg substitute (or 2 eggs)
1 (15 oz) can solid pack pumpkin
1/2 C unsweetened applesauce
1/4 C canola oil
1 C. semisweet chocolate chips

In a mixing bowl, mix the first 8 ingredients. 

In another bowl, combine egg, egg substitute, pumpkin, applesauce, and oil. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Stir in chocolate chips. 

Coat muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray. Fill 2/3 full with batter. Bake at 400 for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks. 

Source: My dear friend Melissa. She's fantastic. 

**I made mini-muffins. And it made 62 of those. That's a lot.**


MY TAKE HOME MESSAGE
I feel like I got super side-tracked. But here's the point. I am not perfect. And probably never will be. Sometimes I eat food that isn't healthy for me. Sometimes I eat chocolate. Sometimes I don't work out. Sometimes I give in to temptation. But this is a journey and we all fall down. The point is that we have to get back up. 
"Every day matters. Every day. You have a bad day, get up the next day and do it again. Make every day count." 
Which means you bet tomorrow I'll hit this with my all again. And you should too! 




Did you food prep today? What's your favorite thing to make? What lessons have you learned recently? Make it a great one y'all!
XOXO
~Jessica~

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Sunday Food Prep 3.3.13




I decided to switch things up a little this week. Usually I make one thing on Sundays and eat it for lunch and dinner throughout the week. But I have to admit, I've been getting a little bored with that lately. It seems I hit Wednesday or Thursday and I'm tired of eating whatever I've made, which typically means making poor choices. So I decided to make one dish for lunch and one for dinners. I suppose we will see how that goes. It did mean increasing my time spent in the kitchen today, but so worth it! This week I decided to try some new recipes- also because I tend to make the same 4-5 recipes and am also getting bored with those! :) 

One of my all time favorite cookbooks. You can get it online, but I got this one at Barnes & Noble a few years ago before I'd ever even seen the show. 
For lunch this week I will be having bbq pork sandwiches. I got the recipe in my Biggest Loser Cookbook. If you don't have this one, it's a must have. It has so many great recipes in there! bbq pork is one of my top favorite foods IN THE WORLD. It's nice to have a healthy version on hand. ;-) 

1 1/2 tsp whole-grain oat flour
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp salt
Pinch of black pepper
1/2 lb pork tenderloin, cut into 3/4" cubes
1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 C orange juice, preferably fresh-squeezed
1/3 C white vinegar
1 Tbsp hickory smoke flavoring
1 Tbsp bbq sauce (7 grams carbs or less per 2 Tablespoons), or more to taste
1/2 cup onion strips (optional)
2 whole-grain or whole-wheat hamburger buns

In a medium resealable plastic bag, combine the flour, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Add the pork. Seal the bag and shake to evenly coat the cubes. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.

Preheat a medium nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat until it is hot enough for a spritz of water to sizzle on it. Add the oil. Scatter the pork cubes into the pan. Cook, turning as needed, for about 5 minutes, or until pork is browned on all sides. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the orange juice, vinegar and smoke flavoring.When the mixture comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low so the mixture simmers. Cover the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour, or until the pork is very tender. With a wooden spoon, shred the pork pieces and mix in the barbecue sauce. 

If the onion is desired, 5 minutes before serving, coat a small nonstick skillet with olive oil spray. Set over medium heat. Add the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes or until tender. 

Meanwhile, place the bun halves, cut sides down, in a medium nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, or until toasted. Place the bun bottoms on serving plates. Spoon half of the pork mixture onto each bun bottom. Top with onion and additional barbecue sauce if desired. Cover with the bun tops. Serve immediately. 

Makes 2 servings

Per Serving: 316 Calories, 28 g protein, 27 g carbohydrates, 9 g fat (2 g saturated), 74 mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber, 510 mg sodium

*I made a few changes. I used an entire pork tenderloin (a little over a pound) and doubled the garlic powder, salt and pepper) so there was enough for the week. I didn't include the onion strips. Usually when I do sandwiches like this I use sandwich thins to make for lower calories* 

I found a recipe on pinterest for Skinny Chicken Enchiladas. I have an unnatural obsession with all kinds of mexican food- I can never get enough! The problem is that it's all so unhealthy! I was a little skeptical about this recipe, but it absolutely did not disappoint. I am so excited for dinner this week! :) 

SAUCE
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 Tbsp Chipotle Chiles in adobo sauce
1 1/2 C. tomato sauce
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
3/4 C. fat free chicken broth
Kosher salt and pepper to taste

CHICKEN
1 tsp vegetable oil
2 cooked chicken breasts, shredded
1 C. diced onion
2 large garlic clove, minced
1/4 C. cilantro
Kosher Salt
1 tsp Cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp chiptole chili powder
1/3 C. chicken broth
1/2 C. tomato sauce
8 (7-inch) reduced carb whole wheat flour tortillas
1 C. shredded low fat mexican cheese
Non-stick cooking spray
1/2 C chopped scallions or cilantro for topping

In a medium saucepan, spray oil and saute garlic. Add chipotle chiles, chili powder, cumin, chicken broth, tomato sauce, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Set aside until ready to use. 

Preheat oven to 400. 

Heat the vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Saute onions and garlic on low until soft, about 2 minutes. Add chicken, salt, cilantro, cumin, oregano, chili powder, tomato sauce, chicken broth and cook 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. 

Spray a 13x9-inch glass baking dish with non-stick spray. Put 1/3 C chicken mixture into each tortilla and roll it.

Place in baking dish seam side down.

Top with sauce. 

Then top with cheese. 

Cover with aluminum foil and bake in oven on middle rack for 20-25 minutes. Top with low-fat sour cream or scallions if you wish. Makes 8 enchiladas. 

*I only used 1 tbsp of the chipotle chiles- mainly because while I do love some mexican food, I tend to be a bit of a wuss and I didn't want it to be too spicy, and it wasn't!* 

Thursday night at work I have a staff meeting and dinner is provided. Yay! Except, OCD Jessica kicks in. It's going to be a waffle bar with fresh fruit toppings which is great, but waffles... not so great for you. I wasn't sure what to do and it was kind of stressing me out. And then I was looking at Cheri's blog the other day (cherierunsthis.com have you gone and looked at it yet? GO NOW! or when you're finished reading this haha) and she had posted about protein waffles and I thought that sounded genius. I could still technically eat the same thing as my co-workers, so not feel like I was missing out, but I could be healthy about it. I get to have my cake (or waffles) and eat it too! :) Her recipe is super simple and quite delicious. Next time I make them, I will know not to put too much batter in the waffle iron though. Yikes, that was an entertaining mess! Here's the recipe. 

1/2 C old fashioned oats
1/2 C lowfat cottage cheese
2 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Dash of salt (optional)
Add all ingredients to a blender (or a food processor since I apparently lost my blender) and blend. Pour batter in a hot, nonstick sprayed waffle maker for a few minutes. Yield  about 8 waffles. 

You can also use the same recipe to make protein pancakes. SOOO EASY! And quite delicious. :) 



To finish up my meal prep for the week I sliced up some green peppers (one of my favorite foods ever) and put them in snack bags. I cut up some strawberries too and got some yogurt for the week. 



As promised, I spent a good chunk of last night going through magazines. I found a few things to share and they are listed below. What magazines do y'all subscribe to? I get Self, Shape, Nutrition Action, Women's Health, Fitness and Cosmo. We get Cooking Light at work too which I have recently come to love- there are some great recipes in there! 

  • I like to regularly treat myself to...... New tunes on my iPod. A night on the sofa, laughing aloud to Happy Endings. I found this interesting. It's obvious that when we reach our goals, we should have a reward. I don't like to encourage people to use food as rewards, especially when the goal is weight loss. But, I have a hard time coming up with other rewards. New tunes on the iPod are fantastic. If you're like me, music is life- it's inspiring and helps me work harder at the gym. Why wouldn't that be a great reward?! And sometimes we all just need a relaxation session. Sounds great to me! :) Self March 2012
  • Oatmeal Smoothie: Mix whole oats in a blender with flaxseeds, a banana, almond milk, peanut butter, and a touch of honey. Women's Health Jan/Feb 2013 I have cereal every morning for breakfast. This sounds like a great alternative. I'll have to try it! :) 
  • Sauteed Snow Peas
    2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
    2 Tbsp Minced Garlic
    2 Tsp Minced Ginger
    4 C. Snow Peas, ends cut off
    1/4 C. Vegetable Stock
    2 Tbsp Minced Parsley
    Pour oil into a large pan over medium heat. When it starts to shimmer, add garlic and ginger and stir for about 3 minutes. Add snow peas and toss a few times to coat, then add stock. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for about 3 more minutes. Toss parsley into pan just before removing vegetables. Use tongs to transfer peas to a plate and serve immediately. Makes 4 servings. Per serving: 110 cal, 8g fat (1 g sat), 55 mg sodium, 6 g carbs, 2g fiber, 2 g protein. Women's health Jan/Feb 2013 I think I'll make these next week. They sound delicious! :) 
While I was grocery shopping today a weird thing happened. I got a random craving for fried okra. it happened when I saw the breaded okra in the freezer aisle. I don't even know that I've ever even had fried okra before. But I bought some so maybe I'll cook it and snack on it later this week. What weird healthy cravings have you had?? What are your favorite healthy recipes?? Did you meal prep today? What did you make? 

Have a great week everyone and remember, move more, eat less! :) 

~Jessica

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Born Again

I spent a good chunk of my morning discovering/catching up on fitness blogs. I get so excited to know that there are other people out there on this journey. The two that I have recently discovered that I am most excited about are the following:

http://cherierunsthis.com/ I found her back when I posted that football workout. I had just googled football workout and found hers and loved it. I follow her on Twitter and she inspires me DAILY. Her journey is amazing and I think y'all should go check out her blog. If she doesn't inspire you too.... well you may just be dead inside. ;-)

http://www.theleangreenbean.com/ I actually discovered her through the above blog. Funny how that works, huh? ;-) She is 27, got her degree in psychology and became a pre-k teacher. Sound familiar??? Her career in pre-k didn't last long as she found it wasn't for her, but she went back to school and is on her way to becoming a Registered Dietitian. So great. She has a program called Foodie PenPals. I just signed up for it and am SO EXCITED to start. Basically, you enter your information and on the 5th of the month, you get matched up with a pen pal. You communicate with them your food likes, etc and by the 15th they send you a box full of goodies! Such a great idea and a great way to be introduced to things you otherwise wouldn't be. There is still time to sign up (closes on the 4th, and then after that you'll just be entered in the next month's) so you should do it too. On the last day of the month, everyone reveals what they got. I'll be posting all that on here. Other than that, she has some great information on food and her experiences to date. So great!

I also just signed up to become a part of the Fitfluential community. I am so excited to inspire others and learn from people going through this journey of living a healthy life!

With that being said, I want to say that I AM NOT PERFECT. Nor have I ever claimed to be. I have realized lately that I do quite a bit of self-sabotage. I get very close to my goal and then subconsciously ruin everything. I know I have come a long way, but I still have a way to go and probably always will.

Who is watching The Biggest Loser this season???? Who is your favorite? Mine is Jackson- LOVE THAT GUY! He is so inspiring (as are all the contestants). One of my new goals is to get him to Colorado and come to Hip Hop with me- I think that would be so much fun. :) I have yet to make it through an episode of that show without crying. Also, I think my tv just died on me (it's old- it's the tv my brother took to college with him in 2000) so I'm not sure I'll be able to watch this week's episode until Tuesday.

I did a bit of cleaning today and have a giant stack of magazines to go through, so I will start that tonight and post another blog entry containing info I find from them. Sharing is caring. I hope you're all having a wonderful Saturday. It sure was a beautiful one here in Colorado.

XOXO
~Jessica~