Bluebird Down

The pursuit of domestic bliss, one glorious debacle at a time.

Lessons Learned January 9, 2012

Filed under: 30 Day Challenge,5K,Food — Teri @ 6:47 pm

You, too?

I went to bed last night and woke up this morning feeling less than awesome. I’ve spent the day intermittently sleeping on the couch and watching bad movies. [Have you seen Sandra Bullock’s Premonition? Don’t do it.] But all of the down time has given me the chance to reflect on my food journal.

I’ve been keeping up with my food journal even though I haven’t posted it. I was distracted for a few days by a friend’s crisis and then took a while to get back on track. As I was taught in social work school, it didn’t happen if it wasn’t documented and evaluated, so here is what I’ve learned so far.

Things I’ve Learned From My Food Journal:

1. This isn’t a shocker: I drink my calories. I know, it’s one of the first things that nutritionists, dieters, and overall fitness know-it-alls will tell you to not do. And I do it all the time. So instead of starting the day with a sugary drink (I do.), I’m moving it to the end of the day as a reward. After I drink 64 ounces of water, after my post-workout chocolate milk and after two cups of green tea, I can have a Coke. My guess is that by the time I can have the Coke, I’ll be too waterlogged to want it. Drinking Coke is my not-so secret shame. I know it’s awful for me. I know that Coca-Cola is a socially irresponsible company (and I’m usually all about using my consumer power to destroy corrupt corporations). In this case, I just don’t care. {Wait, is that the very essence of addiction?!} All of my friends tell me to drink Diet Coke. I tell them Diet Coke is disgusting, they shrug (but don’t disagree) and life goes on. It occurred to me that I need to regard Coke as I do champagne. I love champagne, but I only drink it two or three times a year. If I applied that strategy to Coke, I would have to truly tiny tush.

2. The photo journal was great because I’m a visual learner. I learned that all of my meals needed to be scaled back by about half. That was an easy, practical adjustment to make.

3. I love vegetables and I was surprised to see a lack of veggies in my journal photos. Luckily, this is another easy fix. I’ve already doubled my fresh veggie consumption.

4. I have a “I need to eat” rather than a “I’m hungry” mentality. I’m a schedule girl. I feel the need to eat based on what time it is. Rarely does my stomach growl. I could do that when I was younger. I don’t need to do it now that I’m 40.

5. I am surrounded by people who love me and accept me as I am. I’m thankful. But it does make it difficult to stick to an eating plan when you are the only one on it. Especially when you are the only one struggling to lose weight. We (family and friends alike) view a meal as celebration, as comfort, as a social activity. I don’t want to replace my loving, fun, happy eaters with neurotic calorie counters though. I need encouragement without condemnation… and world peace.

So now I know what I know. Time for less thinking, more action. My 2012 race schedule posts tomorrow. I can already see you on the edge of your seats in anticipation.

“Don’t let your learning lead to knowledge; let your learning lead to action.” Jim Rohn

Advertisements
 

Feeding Time January 4, 2012

Filed under: 30 Day Challenge,Cooking,Food — Teri @ 6:54 pm

Oh my. It’s only Day 3 and I’m already starting to lose interest in my photo food journal. The first problem is that I have the attention span of a mouse on speed. The second problem is that my food is boring — at least in two out of three cases. I sense a challenge within a challenge coming. I gotta shake things up. Spice them up, if you will. But it will have to be next week, because this week’s meals are planned and the food is in the fridge. All dinner recipes, by the way, are brought to you by the January/February issue of Cooking Light. Brace yourself for the coming month. There is a lot of chicken and rice at dinnertime.

Today’s damage: I actually logged my food into Weight Watchers tonight. I racked up 37 points. Whoops. That’s 11 over my daily limit. Looks like I’ll need to get creative and cut back. Mercy.

 

Breakfast: Yes, again. Fiber is your friend.

 

Mid-morning snack while talking to a friend about how we want to be runners with a capital R.

 

Leftover from Panera for lunch -- with Miracle Whip Light and pepper added.

 

A tall non-fat hot chocolate with no whip before my afternoon meeting.

 

A before dinner apple.

 

Dinner: Sausage, Spinach & Mushroom Risotto. I think it would be good even without sausage, but Z thought that was crazy talk.

 

Sausage and Spinach Risotto

  • 3 cups fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
  • 5 ounces sweet Italian sausage, casings removed (about 2 links)
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1 (6-ounce) package baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) shaved fresh Romano cheese

Preparation

  1. 1. Bring broth and 1 cup water to a simmer in a small saucepan (do not boil); keep warm over low heat.
  2. 2. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add salt and mushrooms to pan; cook for 8 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally. Remove mushrooms from pan, and set aside.
  3. 3. Add sausage to pan, and cook for 3 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Add shallots and garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium. Add rice; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in wine, and cook until liquid is nearly absorbed, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.
  4. 4. Stir in 1 cup broth mixture; cook for 2 minutes or until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Add remaining broth mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of broth mixture is absorbed before adding the next (about 30 minutes total). Remove pan from heat. Add mushrooms and spinach; stir until spinach wilts. Top evenly with cheese. Serve immediately.

Can we talk about feeding the mind for a minute? Work is seriously cutting into my reading time.

 

I've owned this book for about 15 years. Every year I say I'm going to read each of the 365 daily essays. I think one year I made it all the way to January 21. And this year I'm already three days behind.

 

I have very good intentions of reading this book. I've read the same 78 pages about three times now.

 

And what am I ditching all of the self help reading for? Scandal! Chapter 9 of The Girl Who Played with Fire.

 

Thoughts or suggestions on anything I’m disgusting in my belly or my head?

 

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Points January 3, 2012

Filed under: 30 Day Challenge,Food — Teri @ 7:28 pm

OK, I realize this photo food journal probably isn’t exciting for the few folks that read my blog (Hey y’all!), but I definitely think it will keep me on a path toward healthy eating. I have a membership to Weight Watchers, but I keep secrets from the PointsTracker. I haven’t quite flipped the switch in my head, if you know what I mean. But hang with me, once I’m all cute and fit, I’ll have some tales to tell.

 

Breakfast was two packets for 300 calories. Much better photo than yesterday, yes?

 

Leftover chicken, broccoli and rice casserole with a side of carrots for lunch.

 

Afternoon snack of Greek yogurt.

 

Handful of almonds before the gym.

 

Chocolate milk after the gym and an apple after dinner.

 

Takeout from Panera for dinner: Half of a Smoked Turkey on Country with a side of (kinda pitiful) chicken noodle soup.

 

Observations: I need to up the veggie intake. I’m thinking of instituting a vegan day into our weekly menu. We already have a vegetarian day — Meatless Monday, which is sometimes on Thursday. Regardless, I need more vegetables on a daily basis, that much is clear. Today’s good news is that I slept through last night without freaky dreams and I wasn’t as hungry today. Hey, do you think hunger and freaky dreams are connected? I say yes. I’ll need a nighttime snack.