Friday, May 28, 2010

Still here (thanks, Vickie, for jiggling me to write)

It's been a nice busy week. No real progress on LOSING because I had three beers last Sunday while I had one of the BEST Sundays ever lolling on our futon bed in our front yard, snuggling with DB and reading my Kindle (Girl With The Dragon Tattoo -- I'm late to the party, I know, but I'm into it!) and it took me until Wednesday to lose those 4 pounds. But I'm maintaining comfortably and having fun COOKING dinner again:

Monday I made trout with thyme and lemon (baked) and we had that stir-fry cabbage yummy for a side dish.

Tuesday was hamburger on our "usual" salad.

Wednesday, I did baked boneless chicken breasts stuffed with gorgonzola cheese, brussels sprouts sauteed with shallots and a tomato salad with feta dressing (last one was for DB and our dinner guest, not me...I'm still not eating tomatoes).

Last night I went out, but was pretty good: cheeseburger with no bun, romaine salad with bacon bits and blue cheese dressing and a couple of glasses of champagne (no carbs).

I also skipped my bread every morning this week. Had to get those beer lbs. OFF. NO MORE BEER, HELEN. Much as it's yummy and perfect for summer. :-(

We do have big plans for the weekend -- tonight, after work, I'm shopping for our "End-of-Ski-Season-Welcome-Home" party that we are having Sunday night. A simple beach day, BBQ and music evening for about 50 people. ;-) Tomorrow PD1 and her family (including her 4 kids) are coming over and will spend the night so we'll have them with use for at least 24 hours...yay! (PD2 and her family are coming to the party on Sunday too.) Tomorrow night we are going to see the premier of an opera that was composed by one of our best friends. Monday we are RECOVERING. ;-) And packing for our camping trip next weekend (leaving on Thursday).

So, I'm still plodding along. Not back to yoga yet (although I finally went to a hand doctor and now am in a brace for my thumb for 8 weeks...and he gave me some good tips so I may be able to practice before then). I am walking my mile every morning and at least two evenings a week am walking a lot more on the beach. My doctor (had my annual physical last Monday) says this is good. I can't wait to get some more tone back into my arms. But I will be patient.

Wishing everyone a fun Memorial Day weekend!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Boredom is the mother of invention

As I mentioned last post, I have been getting tired of our go-to dinner salad. I love to cook and I have been missing doing that. It was also cold and rainy on Monday when I went grocery shopping this week so I went a little wacky and bought new ingredients to try new dinners this week. So far the results have been yummy, if I do say so myself (DB says so too, by the way)!!

Here's what we've had so far (all of these dinners took 1/2 hour or less of work):

Monday night: As I mentioned in comments on my last post, I made a tri-tip roast on Monday night. Rather than just putting it in the oven, I seasoned it with chili powder and cinnamon (my new obsession). It turned out perfectly medium rare after cooking for just about 40 minutes. I also roasted veggies (brussels sprouts, zucchini and asparagus) in 1/4 cup of balsamic and 1/4 cup of olive oil. I put that in the oven at the same temp as I was cooking the tri-tip (425) for about 20 minutes.

Tuesday night: Bought some pollo asado from Trader Joes (pre-seasoned/marinated/very thinly sliced/not too much sodium). Grilled it in a pan while I made our usual salad and put the warm chicken on top. Spicy and warm with the cold salad is oh-so-good.

Wednesday night (I am most proud of this one as I have literally NEVER cooked pork before in my life except bacon): I had bought a pork tenderloin on Monday carbs, low fat...but I had no idea what to do with it. Found a recipe on-line that I modified: 1 T olive oil, cumin, crushed garlic, cinnamon and (sparse) ground cloves. Mixed all that up and put it on the pork. Baked at 450 for 20 minutes, then sliced into medallions. While that was cooking, I also put in a casserole of simply sliced zucchini with parmesan cheese. By the time the pork was done, so was the zucchini. While that was in the oven, I cooked up some onions and cabbage on the stove -- with 1 T butter, some horseradish and spicy mustard. This was the most delish meal yet! :-)

I have never really cooked with meat so this week has been a big far, so good!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Some recipe ideas that I think are yummy

I have come up with a couple of dishes that are making it easier to "Crack" down again and thought I would share:

Salad: Our go-to dinner on this program is a big yummy salad, but I was getting kind of bored with the same old, same old (even though I am a person who can eat the same thing for every meal 5 days a week usually and be ok). I needed to shake up our usual nighttime salad to get myself not to want to go out to eat every night (see prior post about how I have been reminded that eating out a lot is really hard on the scale). The other night, DB had some friends over to play music with him in his studio and so I was on my own for dinner. I went to make my usual salad and saw that the mushrooms we had were a teeny bit I took them, chopped up some red onion and put them in to saute. While they cooked, I made the usual rest of the salad (some yummy lettuce, cucumbers and celery) and added some vinaigrette (full fat, no carb, red wine/oil vinaigrette from Trader Joes). When the onions and mushrooms were hot and soft, I put them on top of the salad and topped it all off with some blue cheese crumbles. The cheese melts into the hot veggies...delish! I like a sharp cheese to get more bang for my calories. This salad is a quick and easy variation on another one we like to make for special occasions and it is very very satisfying to the tummy and the taste buds. :-)

Cinnamon and cottage cheese "dessert": This morning I read in Prevention magazine about how cinnamon can really help your body process glucose (great for us on low-carb, watching to keep from developing diabetes programs). I use cinnamon in my coffee every morning. DB and I were talking about how to get this into our diet more and I thought of adding it to cottage we tried it (we use full fat cottage cheese)! Yum yum yum. Very cheesecake/desserty tasting. I will do this when I need something sweet. Very low-carb. I would add about 1/2 teaspoon to 1/2 cup of cottage cheese and maybe toss in some stevia if it's not sweet enough for you without.

I happily got on the scale this morning and it's down lower than it has been in a month. THAT is what eating at home for two days can do for me. Of course, we're going out tonight, but the end of the "up" is in sight. I've been maintaining at about 5 lbs over my lowest weight pretty much the whole ski season...sometimes the scale would show me up to 12 lbs over the lowest (ok, that was just one day, but it was a SUCKY day). I'm ready to get down to my lowest...and 10 lbs more...before our anniversary trip in July (or sooner). :-)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Hey, self!

Remember when you wrote last week about salt? Well, hey, SOY SAUCE IS SALT! I swear sometimes I have to yell at myself...and it still doesn't get through!

DB has been very sick this week so I got him some hot & sour soup from our local Chinese food emporium on Monday night. I also got myself some veggies and protein. BIG MISTAKE. My weight sky-rocketed up over two pounds overnight. And there was NO other reason other than the soy sauce in the dish. (It's back down today, thank goodness.)

I love Chinese food. I love soy sauce. But I don't think I can eat it anymore.

Other than this, I am saying "hey, self!" and trying to motivate to get back on the Crack program full-on. DB needs to as well. We have both been very lax over the winter/ski season. Time to get serious again...bathing suit season is right around the corner.

I don't like this up-and-down, but I realized yesterday that this will probably be life forever for me. I will constantly have to be vigilant...if I ever eat what I really WANT to, I gain. This realization is ok...I'd rather be careful than fat. And logging my weight every single day makes me accountable...I absolutely HATE putting in higher numbers. But I do it.

I'm also looking for exercises that will mimic the benefit I got from skiing this year. My knees are in better shape than in a long time. DB thinks I need to work on the muscles around the quads (on both sides) as well as the quads...those are harder to get to. But I'm talking to my teachers and researching. I want to keep this good leg/core tone. I think I need to really buckle down and learn to rollerblade...that action is probably the closest I'm going to get to skiing until next winter. :-)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Busy should not be an excuse for not eating right

I'm feeling "as-salted" as Vickie would say.

I've been eating out WAY too much and, as of this morning, I realize why I keep gaining lbs -- it's the salt, stupid! I am weight is not going down, it is going up...not a lot, but still too much. And I am not really trying very hard. We are busy and eating out A LOT. It's fun and I do eat better than most people I see but I have no idea what is really going in the food I am eating.

Last night was the piece de resistance: we went out for dinner pre-theatre (our bimonthly Theatre Date Night). I ate a pretty good dinner -- fish and salad appetizer, steak and salad entree, sparkling wine, vodka cocktail -- the only "bad" thing was some crackers. The portions were not too big and I had eaten very carefully all day (less than usual). I felt like I navigated the Cinco de Mayo Mexican food thing pretty well. But nooooo...I got on the scale this morning and it showed 2.5 pounds up. Very not happy was I.

And then I realized that both DB and I were VERY thirsty after dinner...unusually so...and we are used to going to this restaurant pre-theatre all the time. We had to drink and drink and drink from the water fountain at the theatre. Wham! It occurred to me that we were as-salted. WAY too much salt in our meals for some reason. No idea why, but I am SURE that is it.

So, after our last ski weekend of the year this weekend, I plan to rededicate myself to our better habits and first among those is eating at home A LOT more. There's only so much you can control at a restaurant no matter how careful you are.