Friday, May 31, 2013

Weight Watchers Weigh In: Week 37


So I'm just going to get right into the thick of things.

Weigh-In:  +3.6 pounds

Where do I start?

Ah yes, Memorial Weekend.

Mine started last Friday.  I went to work that day as usual, and 2 hours in, my superior decided that I had worked enough and should start my holiday weekend super early!


So, I went home and the fun began.

Actually, I took a nap because I was super tired.  After my nap, I had this surge of energy and I decided to clean my apartment.  Not just clean it, SUPER CLEAN it.  I even scrubbed my baseboards if that tells you anything.  And while I was cleaning, I was trying my hand at a new pizza crust recipe.  It has a 4 hour rise time, so while I waited for it to be done, I cleaned.

How's that for multitasking?

I was even able to get in my 30 Day Shred workout while it was cooking.  So when my boyfriend got home from work, the pizza was done and we ate it.

ALL OF IT.  I usually don't finish all of my portion but I guess all that cleaning really ramped up my appetite.  In any case, I ate too much.  I could tell.

It was good but it definitely has the potential to be GREAT.  I need to tweak the recipe a little and this might end up being my go to Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free crust recipe.

So that was my Friday.

Did I mention that my boyfriend's birthday also falls on Memorial Weekend?

Well, it does.  And I knew I should have made myself a Memorial Weekend Plan.  I even made a mental note to blog one for myself because I had this sneaking suspicion that it was going to be needed.  But I didn't.  I wish I had.

Anyway, Saturday we went out to celebrate his birthday.  We had dinner and saw Fast 6.  We ate at Hugo's (again) and then followed with some diet appropriate desserts.  It was great but again, I ate too much.  You see, it doesn't matter how well you eat, the volume still counts.


Sunday was his actual birthday party.  It was a pool party/barbeque at a friend's house.  There was TONS of food.  I couldn't eat most of it due to my food intolerance but I pushed the limit on it.  I had some corn chips and some of this creamy chicken dip.  Actually, it's a recipe I used to make quite often so I knew exactly what was in it.  It did have dairy in it and dairy is one of those food I need to stay away from.  I can tolerate it in small amounts but overall I usually just feel better if I stay away.  Gluten I can't have at all but dairy ... I like to press my luck with.

And press it I did.

You know, to be honest, it feels like I ate tons of it, but in reality I didn't.  It just makes me crazy bloated so I feel like I ate a lot.

That's all I had at the party besides some raw veggies.  But raw veggies really aren't all that sexy to write about.

Monday.  Oh sweet, sweet Monday.

There is this restaurant that I have recently discovered.  Actually, I always knew it was there and it was a favorite in my former life when I used to eat whatever I wanted.  But I recently found out they have a gluten free, dairy free pizza.  I almost wish I never discovered it because it is SO GOOD.  So on Monday, we went to the pool for a couple of hours, lazed about and just relaxed.  We didn't want to do too much because we had a dinner party (another bday celebration) to attend.  However, after the pool, it hit us like a mack truck.  We just had to have this pizza.  So TWO HOURS, before we were to eat dinner, we ate pizza.  I'm not going to lie it was so good.

We then went to our dinner party.  That's right, it was a DOUBLE DINNER night.  I could only eat a few bites of everything, I was so full it hurt.

They even presented me with my own little gluten free, dairy free, sugar free dessert in lieu of the birthday cake.  Wasn't that so nice?  FYI:  It was AMAZING.

Other things I did that I should improve upon:

I ate too many eggs.  I miss eggs so much but when I eat too many they can cause problems.  Dairy.  I ate too much dairy.  The thing with dairy is that it takes days and days to get out of my system.  So until it does, I'm left feeling crappy.  That means since I ate it on a Sunday, I won't feel better until the following Thursday at the earliest.  yuck.  I also didn't log at the end of every day.  I relied on my memory to log after the fact.  This is a blatant no-no.  See, this is where my Memorial Day Plan would have come in handy.

And finally, I think it bears mentioning that I have recently gone off of my hormonal birth control.  I don't know if any of you have ever done this but this was my first time ever coming off of it.  It's been interesting.  My emotions are super crazy, my tummy is craving things it didn't before, and my body is doing very weird things.  I don't want to blame too much on this, but ladies, come on, you know how hormones can wreak havoc.  I went to my doctor last week and she let me know what I should expect and basically anything is up for grabs on this one.  Mood swings, cravings, irregular cycles and even weight gain can happen while your body is regulating.

If I want to be honest, the weekend wasn't that crazy.  I think my emotions right now are a little out of whack and everything really is affecting me more than it should.  I clearly ate more than usual which really isn't a big deal as long as I don't make a habit of it.  I REALLY REALLY think my hormones were the driving force behind this week.  I'm not that concerned with the weight gain because the eating was a temporary thing and if my body needs to do things before it settles down, then so be it.

I just hope it settles down soon!  I feel like a mad woman ;)

What I did:

1.  I earned somewhere around 8-10 AP.  I only got in three 30 Day Shred workouts :(  I should have done more but I let my time get away from me.

2.  I ate 277 points.  WOW!! 

3.  I feel like my water is slipping away from me!!  I'm going to be extra diligent this week.

4.  What I ate?  In addition to all that glorious food I mentioned above, I had some chicken noodle soup, tuna salad with crudites, SUSHI!!, homemade larabars, as egg sandwich, and peanut butter with semi-sweet chocolate at some point.  Wow, 277 points.  I'm a beast ;)


Today's Menu:

B:  homemade larabar
L:  chicken noodle soup
D: portobello mushroom pizza

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Weight Watchers Weigh In: Week 36

I am SO SO SO late with this post.

+0.4 pounds

I got caught up in my long memorial weekend.

Oh boy did I get caught up in it.  But that's for another post.

Weekly Roundup:

1.  I earned around 13 AP.  I did five 30 Day Shred Workouts.  I'm almost done!! 2 more workouts to go!!

2.  I ate 209 points.

3.  I drank plenty of water.

4.  I am actually not very pleased with how I ate.  Last week I didn't feel like cooking AT ALL and so I made a couple of simple things.  And to be honest, those simple things were not very FILLING things.  So looking back at my log I can see where I was eating more "filler" food than I should have.  I had my sushi but that wasn't the problem.  I see Kettle potato chips in there too much.  Peanut Butter also rears its ugly head.   I also had bought some Gluten Free White Bread and I ate that too much.  Not that there's anything wrong with sandwiches but when I eat bread, it just induces cravings and makes me get snacky.  I didn't eat any items I'm not supposed to (gluten, dairy, soy).  I don't know.  I just wasn't overly happy with my week.  BUT, I'm glad I recognized what happens when I skimp on the cooking.  I just need to remember that for the future ..

Like maybe what happened over Memorial Weekend.

UGH ;)

Today's Menu:

B:  Homemade Larabar
L:  Chicken Noodle Soup
D:  Portobello Mushroom pizza

Friday, May 17, 2013

Weight Watchers Weigh In: Week 35

And I'm holding steady this week.

Weigh-In:  0 lbs

Nothing too much to report this week so I'll jump right into things.

Weekly Roundup:

1.  I earned 13-14 AP doing five 30 Day Shred workouts.  I'm on level 3 and man I'm SORE.  My neck, upper back, thighs and every inch of my abdominals are all killing me.  But in a good way.

2.  I ate 207 points.  It was just one of those weeks where I wasn't hungry.  I don't know if it was the heat or what, but I just didn't require that much food.  Maybe it was my aching abs :)

3.  I think I officially have this water thing down.

4.  Due to my non-existent hunger, I pretty much ate the same thing every day.  I ate Larabars, zucchini boats, spring vegetable potato salad, cucumbers & hummus and sushi.  Seriously, breakfast was a larabar, lunch was a zucchini boat, potato salad, cucumbers and hummus and dinner was sushi.  Sometimes it's nice to have a little monotony.

And that's it folks.  I have a busy weekend ahead of me.  Star Trek, a photo shoot and hopefully some time by the pool!

Have a great weekend!


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

30 Day Shred: Level 3

I'm at level 3 y'all!

And all I can say is ...


I was NOT a fan of Level 2.  It wasn't horrible or anything, it was just plain HARD!  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE what it did to my body I just didn't love having to do it :)

About Level 3:

I burned 260 calories.

Again, it's the 3-2-1 system (3 minutes of strength, 2 minutes of cardio, 1 minute of abs) and I have become a huge fan of this format.  I find that I can push myself harder when I know that any second I get to move on to something else.  I'm only on Day 1 of this level but it already feels easier than Level 2.  Then again, when I wrote my last update about Level 2 I had no idea that that workout would get harder as time went on.  I'd like to think it became harder because I pushed myself each time I did the workout.  In all honesty, I did do that.  I always start a level following the beginner moves most of the time, but I like to end doing as many of the advanced moves as I can.  And push myself I did.  My hips and butt are still sore from doing my last workout from level 2 because of those stupid planks.


Level 1 Day 1:

Chest:  40"
Ribs:    33"
Waist:  33.5"
Hips:    42"
Belly Button:  34.5"
Upper Thigh:  24"
Leg @ Knee:  18"
Left Arm:  12.25"

Level 3 Day 1:

Chest:  40"
Ribs:    32"
Waist:  32.5"
Hips:   41"
Belly Button:  33.5"
Upper Thigh:  22.5"
Leg @ Knee:  17"
Left Arm:  12"

Total Lost:  -6.75"

Today's Menu:
B:  larabar
L:  zucchini boat + bacon wrapped jalapeno pepper + spring potato salad
D:  sushi

Friday, May 10, 2013

Weight Watchers Weigh In: Week 34

Hey y'all.

Fun fact:  I was born and raised in Virginia where the phrase y'all is used quite frequently, as you can imagine.  I haven't lived there since 2000 and I still use y'all like it's going out of style.

And I probably always will.

It's been a long week.  Nothing too stressful happened.  It was more like time just seemed to move at a brutally slow pace.  However, tis Friday and therefore I shall rejoice.

Hurrah!  Hurrah!

Weigh In:  -1.2 lbs

Rejoice again I shall.

Hurrah!  Hurrah!

If my math is right (and it always is- Tony Stark) since January 2nd, I have lost 13.8 pounds.  That's huge!  If memory serves, that's the most consistent weight loss I've ever had in my adult life with relative ease.

For years I have always either counted calories or points.  I always stayed within what was the appropriate calorie deficit for my height and weight but I rarely lost consistent weight.  And if I did, seeing more than a pound loss total per month was a joyous occasion for me.  And I ALWAYS worked out.  HARD.  I ran, I lifted weights, I played sports, I did it all.  Up until January 2013 that has always been my plan.  I followed my points/calories, I worked out 5-6 days a week and I'd pray for the weight loss to happen.  And I usually felt horrible.  I was usually hungry, craving some sort of take-out/fast food item.  Or counting the seconds til the weekend when I could have my "cheat day" and finally be satisfied.  I also felt like I had no control over the situation.  I felt like I had no control over what I was eating. 

When I was younger, this sort of worked for me.  I was able to keep serious weight gain at bay but never really got the results I wanted.  But as I got older (especially in the last couple of years) it eventually became this cycle that wore me to the bone.  Monday thru Friday I was diligent.  I always stayed within my daily points/calories and I got in my workouts (intense hour plus long workouts).  But I was either always hungry or always wishing I was eating something else.  I didn't want to touch those Weekly Points because I wanted them for the weekend.  And then the weekend would come and I would eat those "naughty" items.  I wouldn't go over my points (most of the time) but I would relish every last one.  And then come Monday morning, I'd weigh 5 pounds heavier due to my weekend splurges.  And then during the work week, I'd be diligent again and slowly would lose those 5 pounds and if I was really, really lucky maybe an extra quarter pound would come off too.  But then the weekend would come and I would do it over again.

And that made for some terribly slow weight loss.  Or rather, it made for some non-existent weight loss.

From mid September 2012 to the end of December 2012 I had been on WW for 15 weeks.  At the end of those 15 weeks I had lost 0.2 pounds total.

See what I mean?  Vicious cycle.

And while I knew this was going on I still felt like something was wrong with me.  Like there was nothing left for me to try to lose weight because it just wasn't working for me.

Then in January of this year I changed everything about the way I ate.  And if I'm going to be honest, I was pretty scared to do it.  I'd like to say I was so frustrated about my weight (and I was) that I was just hell-bent on changing everything to get results.  But even knowing that change was necessary to get what I DESPERATELY wanted (weight-loss), I was afraid to give up eating certain foods. 

It was my own Sophie's Choice.  Did I want to be miserable in my body (because I was starting to become that way) but be able to eat whatever deliciousness I wanted OR did I want to try to make some dietary changes which would most definitely make me healthier and just might make me lose some weight?

I easily made the decision to change my diet but in the weeks leading up to my designated date (I chose January 2), I had all sorts of negative feelings about it.  I was doubtful it would work, I was scared I would miss food too much, I was nervous that my life would be miserable because I couldn't eat whatever I wanted.

I seriously had that thought.  That I would have a miserable existence because I was cutting unhealthy food out of my life.  That's just not right.

There are people who CAN eat whatever they want and maintain a healthy life and weight.  I am not one of those people.

I have NEVER been one of those people. 

So after a couple months of preparation and because of other on-goings in my life, on January 2nd, I started a particular elimination diet that would eventually change my way of thinking.  I cut out the processed food and other items and ended up learning that my body doesn't do well on certain foods.  Apparently my body does not like gluten, dairy and to a small degree soy and eggs.

And from there, my world changed.

I lost weight even though I wasn't exercising.  I taught myself that taking things out of your diet doesn't mean you have nothing left to eat, in fact, there are usually too many choices!  I learned that certain foods have an excessive amount of control over me and when I stop eating them, I take back ALL control.  And  I learned that it's still hard work.

There is no band-aid people.  No matter which path your body takes you on, there will always be hard work along the way.

None of these revelations were overnight.  I still struggle with feelings of success and failure.  I still have moments where I wish I were "normal".  But they aren't as bad as they used to be.  Thank God.  But the best thing I've learned is that changing my diet did NOT make me miserable :)

What I did this week:

1.  I earned probably around 15 AP.  I did five 30 Day Shred workouts.  I took an extra day off due to crazy muscle soreness.  I don't know what it is about level 2 but it makes my hips and lower back hurt crazy bad.  I think it's the last ab exercise, the plank while bringing your knee over.  Whatever it is, it makes for some serious body soreness.

2.  I ate 214 points for the week (I do not count AP towards my total)

3.  Water = :)

4.  What I ate.  This past week I made my homemade Big Macs, chef salad, soup au pistou (fancy name for vegetable soup to which I added chicken), roasted chicken lettuce wraps, and chicken scampi.  I also indulged in some larabars, peanut butter, and sushi.  But not at the same time. (I'll be trying my hand at homemade larabars this weekend.  If I'm successful I'll let you know)

Today's Menu:
B:  Larabar
L:  Chef Salad + Apple
D:  Soup au Pistou ** and probably some sushi ;)

Monday, May 6, 2013

My Big Mac

So Saturday I tried my hand at re-creating one of my most favorite fast food items:  the Big Mac.  

Years and years ago my mom bought me the Best of Top Secret Recipes cookbook by Tom Wilbur.  And in it is the copycat recipe for the Big Mac!

As you can imagine, the recipe ingredients are quite simple but the author says it's the ORDER in which you build the burger that matters most.

According to the BOOK you will need:

4 hamburger buns
2 additional hamburger buns
1 pound ground beef
dash salt
1 T Kraft Thousand Island
4 tsp finely diced onion
2 cups chopped lettuce
4 slices American cheese
8 - 12 dill pickles slices.

(Makes 4 Big Macs)

As I'm not eating certain foods nowadays I'll be making some substitutions:

I'll use grass-fed ground beef, an actual recipe for the special sauce, gluten free hamburger buns, and vegan American cheese.

I know with my substitutions it won't be perfect but I'm desperately hoping it'll be close.

As for the special sauce, in the original book recipe Mr. Wilbur calls for Kraft Thousand Island.  However, some deep internet research reveals an actual recipe for the sauce:

1/2 c. mayo (I don't do well with mayo so I will use soy free vegenaise)
3 T French Dressing (Annie's Organics makes one that is GF and vegan plus it's organic so you can't beat that)
1/2 T sweet pickle relish (quick note:  finding relish without HFCS is quite difficult - thank you Del Monte!)
1 1/2 T dill pickle relish**
1 ts minced onion
1 ts sugar (I used xylitol and it turned out beautifully)
1 ts vinegar
1 ts ketchup
1/8 ts salt

Makes enough for 8 burgers.

You're going to mix it all up, put it in the microwave for about 25 seconds, stir again, then let chill in the refrigerator for an hour.

After I mixed the sauce I had my boyfriend taste it.  His eyes opened wide and he said "Oh wow that tastes just like it".

After he said that, I knew this was going to work.

**I already had the dill pickle slices for the burgers so instead of buying dill pickle relish, I just diced up some of the dill slices and used that instead.  It worked great.

And now the order:

According to Mr. Wilbur it HAS to be in this order:

Are you ready?

1.  Bottom Bun
2.  Special Sauce
3.  Onion
4.  Lettuce
5.  American Cheese
6.  All Beef Patty
7.  Middle Bun
8.  Special Sauce
9.  Onion
10. Lettuce
11. Pickles
12. All Beef Patty
13. Top Bun

Seriously, the cookbook has a blueprint of the building process it's THAT important.

So while the sauce chilled, we made the patties and got all the toppings ready.  And then we got to building these bad boys.

The result?


Seriously, I just at there with a huge, stupid grin on my face.  I was so happy.

A couple of things.  I did NOT add the extra bun in the center because we didn't have enough to go around and I also added an extra slice of cheese because I wanted extra cheese :)  But other than that, I followed everything else to a "T".

There you have it boys and girls.  My version of a gluten free, dairy free, fast food free Big Mac.

I WILL DEFINITELY be making these again. 

Points Plus for One "Big Mac" w/ extra cheese:  15 points plus


Saturday, May 4, 2013

Weight Watchers Weigh In: Week 33

Weigh In:  -2.8 lbs

I felt this one coming.  Around Tuesday or Wednesday I swear I felt as if a layer of fat had been shed from my body overnight.

No lie.  It was kind of weird but awesome.

I don't think the loss was a result of any particular one thing that I did this past week but rather just a result of weeks of trying.

Oh and try I did!

How it happened:

1.  I earned 12-14 AP.  I did five 30 Day Shred workouts.  I usually do 6 workouts per week but I took an extra day off due to not feeling well. (AP points are an estimate based on 1AP = 100 calories burned)

2.  I ate 220 points.  After 30 some weeks of being on this program, I think that when I eat around 220-225 points and NOT eat any of my AP then I get the best results.  So I'm going to shoot for that again. (NO AP points counted in that total)

3.  Water.  Water is, like, my BFF now.  Where I go, it goes.

4.  What I ate?  Let's see.  I had:  breakfast potatoes and bacon; french spring soup; pulled pork and coleslaw; BLT sandwich (I tried another gluten free bread:  Udi's White Sandwich Bread.  It's got a good flavor but has that slight crumbly texture that most GF items have.  I only used it once but if I ever needed bread I'd probably get this one again); and of course sushi.  I've also added Larabars to the mix.  Right now I have the Blueberry Muffin flavor and the ingredients are: dates, cashews, blueberries, blueberry juice concentrate, lemon juice concentrate and vanilla.  And that's it!  Amazing right?  After I get through the very few I have left, I'm going to try making my own.  I keep one of these in my purse for emergencies.  Pretty good and you can't beat that ingredient list.  Oh yeah, we also had our weekend treat of Kettle potato chips. 

I had the least variety in my menu this past week because I was so busy I never made my other meal (in case you're wondering it was a sweet potato hash with vegetables).  I've been house and dog sitting for my friends and it's been busy.

Today's Menu:

We're going to try to make Big Macs!  After my dietary changes we only really eat at two places.  Sushi and Hugo's.  Since I always am concerned about eating something I'm not supposed to, we generally just make everything ourselves.  While this is definitely the healthiest way for me to eat, it's not always the most fun.  I've said it before, but I REALLY miss eating out.  We've only eaten out maybe five times in over 4 months.  So crazy.  Anyway, we're going to try to make Big Macs.

This one is for me because I LOVE Big Macs.

If I'm successful, I'll be sure to share!

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30 Days to ... by JH is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.