Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Brush yourself off and keep on going

It seems inevitable that in every road trip there are going to be roadblocks, traffic jams, wrong turns and stall-outs. My journey is no exception.
As you can see, there has been a gap in my posts...a rather large one. I had been consistently going to my gym and doing Zumba, eating well and was all around kicking patootie. But then I started hurting a little in my foot. That turned to limping, which went in to full blow inability to bear weight on my left heel. A trip to urgent care and an x-ray revealed a large bone spur in my heel. Ouch. The doctor called it a unicorn horn on my heel. (Lily named my unicorn Harold, bless her heart) This tiny piece of bone managed to derail me completely. I couldn't work out. Heck, I could barely walk! A few weeks of physical therapy and switching back to sneakers full time and I am seeing improvement. I can't jump or do high impact exercise. At the worst of my pain I convinced myself that I was too broken to get well. I figured that this meant the end of my health journey. I make no excuses. I gave up for a while. I wallowed in my failure. I didn't really watch what I ate, stopped caring and gained back my Whole30 loss. I am not proud of it, but that is the reality.

Thankfully, I woke up one morning and a little switch had been turned back on. I cared again! I have been watching what I eat, but not being strict about it. I have been doing weight training and low impact, high intensity cardio. You would think that would be enough lose a little, or at the very least maintain, but I am still gaining. I am more and more convinced daily that there is definitely something wrong with my hormones. I made an appointment with an endocrinologist and hopefully will get some answers soon. I am going to be starting back on a flour and sugar free diet. It seems to be what works best for my body. Hopefully with a better diet, consistent exercise and some testing from the Dr can help fix this whole mess!

I plan on blogging about my journey as often as I can. I will share the good, the bad and the ugly.

So here we go...again!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Vacation is over

OK, I really wasn't on "vacation," but Daddypants and I took a little detour off the strict eating path for a couple weeks. 30 days of saying no to every craving, temptation and desire causes us both to say YES to a little too much for a little too long after Whole 30 was done.
It has been interesting to discover which foods really mess me up and which ones don't. I have learned a lot through the last few weeks. Yes, I did gain 3 pounds back, but that was expected. I ate grains and dairy and bloated right up. I expect it to some right back of, along with a few friends, now that I am back at it.
I had slacked back off to just once a week at the gym and I am finding myself craving more. I love the feeling of completing a good workout.
I have a new short term goal I am working toward. I am attending an out of state family function in 2.5 weeks. I REALLY want to lose 10 pounds by them. I plan on kicking ass and taking names for the next 18 days.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Whole 30 wrap up

I wanted to post my results and final thoughts about my Whole 30 in a separate post so it didn't get lost.
Daddypants and I had incredible results! Between us we lost (drum roll please...) 
I lost 16.5 pounds and Daddypants lost 20.5 pounds. Incredible right? 
More importantly, I feel incredible. In the last 30 days I have noticed the following
-I am sleeping better
-My headaches (that were once 3-4 times a week) are pretty much gone
-My skin has cleared up
-My digestion seems to be working a lot better
-I have a lot more energy
-I have not had a fibromyalgia flare up all month. My pain is at a low! 

I am really excited to keep the ball rolling. I am not going to continue with the complete strictness of the Whole 30, as it was not intended as a long term plan. We have decided that the primal/paleo way of eating works well for us. I have always been a bit sensitive to flour, and with blood sugar issues running in our families, keeping white sugar out of our diet seems like a good idea.  I have arthritis and fibromyalgia. My body is prone to inflammation, so I am removing foods that cause inflammation. Thankfully, the things that work for me also seem to be working well for Daddypants.

We both know that extreme strict diet plans are not manageable long term, so we are allowing ourselves the occasional off plan meal/treat. Life is about balance. Neither of us want to feel deprived. After all, this is not a "Diet" that we are on. We have changed our way of life. We are looking at food in a whole new light. We are choosing foods to best fuel our bodies. We are exercising to improve our health. 

The thing is, I have a lot of weight to lose. We both do. Some people may say that they think it is unthinkable or unreasonable to give up bread (or rice, cake, corn, or whatever you want to fill in the blank with). But I think it is unthinkable to continue to be unhealthy for the rest of my life. If forgoing certain food gets me to my goal, then that is what I will do. Most importantly, I am finding what works for ME. Some people thrive on a vegetarian high carb diet. I am not one of those people. I have tried other plans, and this is the first that really clicked for me so I am going to keep going!

I will continue to share my journey as I work to reshape myself. I am glad to have you all along for the ride!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Whole 30 Day 28, 29 and 30!

I finished! This month really flew by. So quickly, in fact, that the last 3 days disappeared! So much for my lofty promise of not falling behind again. I am so proud to say that I completed the WHOLE thing! (no pun intended)

Friday - Day 28
Breakfast was the usual and then I headed to work. 
Lunch was grilled chicken breast and green beans. Every now and then you get some chicken that is tough/dry no matter you do. This was one of those times. I hardly ever buy boneless skinless chicken breast anymore for just that reason. 

At least it looked pretty

Work was fine, picking up Miss Bits was fine, but then the day fell apart. It was one of those days that you just want to end. Every was cranky and off their game.
We were going to head over to our couples group for dinner, but with Miss Bits melting down and me feeling like poo, we decided to skip it and just stay home. 
I reheated some chicken and nuked a spaghetti squash. I seasoned the squash with some garlic seasoning and finished off the plate with a little mashed sweet potato mixed with a little cinnamon and pecan pieces. Not a bad meal. Again, the dry chicken kind of killed it but the flavor was good.

By the end of the day I was just glad to go to bed. Thankfully we all woke up on the right side of the bed Saturday morning.
Saturday- Day 29
Breakfast was the usual, again. Nope, still not tired of eggs!
We ate a late breakfast so lunch was late also. I found a recipe on Nom Nom Paleo that would work perfect for a pork roast I was thawing in the fridge. My only dilemma was that the marinade/sauce ingredient list included honey (gasp!) which is ok on a paleo/primal diet, but a no-no on Whole 30. The Whole 30 requires absolutely no sweeteners. No sugar, no honey. You can use fruit juice or dates to sweeten but the true sweeteners are out. Having never made this before, I wasn't wanting to tweak the recipe and throw that balance of flavors off since I had no idea what it would taste like. Well, I decided to throw caution to the wind and just use the darn honey. Yes, I know that is was not 100% compliant. Did I care? No. I used 2 tablespoons on a 6 pound roast (the recipe called for 2 tablespoons on a 5 pound roast) and left almost all the sauce/juice in the pot. On day 29 I doubt that minuscule amount of sweet in this was going to send me running to a bag of candy. Perhaps if I was on day 1 I might have cared a little more. 

Here is a peek at the finished product

This was one of the best pork roasts I have ever had. 'Round these parts I am famous (maybe infamous) for some sweet pork-y deliciousness lovingly referred to as Pork Juice. While the taste of this is a totally difference thing, I honestly felt like it was on par with Pork Juice in the level of delicious. I WILL be making this again.

Lunch was this amazing pork with a side of roasted broccoli. It was perfection. 

After Daddypants was off of work, he was itchin' to get out of the house, so we decided to venture out. We were armed with a coupon and headed to the local better-quality buffet. We stayed on plan with broccoli and roast beef with a sweet potato side. I tell you, it is so comforting to know that we are able to eat what we need to even if we go out. Once again, we passed up all the junky foods and endless dessert selections and left with our heads held high. Go us!

Sunday Day 30
The final day! 
Breakfast The Usual (what else?)
Lunch was pork and broccoli leftover from the night before. I swear it was even better the next day.
I was in a pizza mood again so I made my delicous Italian mish-mash. Sausage, red bell pepper, mushrooms, onions, a few black olives, Italian seasoning and tomato sauce. Mmm. I may never want regular pizza again! This has all the flavor with none of the crust of cheese. Perfection!

Since the pork I made is SO good, I just have to share the recipes.

Dutch Oven Pork Roast
adapted from Tammy Credicott’s The Healthy Gluten-Free Life, as posted on

5 Pound Pork leg/shoulder roast (in the recipe, she used two 2.5 pound roasts, I used one 6 pound roast)
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 yellow onion, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons raw organic honey (I used 2)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
2 teaspoons granulated onion (I only had minced dried onion so I used that)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablepoon Kosher salt
3 cups water.

Heat your oven to 325 F with rack in lower middles
Pat the toasts dry then season with salt and pepper.
Heat coconut oil in dutch oven on medium high heat then sear roast on all sides. 
While the pork is browning, add the onion, garlic, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, oregano, chili powder, rosemary, granulated onion, cumin, salt and some freshly ground pepper into a food processor. Pulse until blended.
Once roast is nice a golden, add the sauce to the pot and then add the water. 
Cover and put in the oven for 2.5-3 hours or until pork is fork tender. Since I used one large roast, I went the full 3 hours.
Shred and gobble it up!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Whole 30 Day 26 and 27

I am getting better...only have to catch up one 2 days today! Yay me!
Kidding aside, we are in the home stretch! Wednesday was day 26 and today was day 27. Only 3 more days left before this adventure comes to an end. I am, of course, already thinking about day 31 and beyond, but we will get to that later.
Day 26. No pics today, such is life.
Breakfast- The Usual
Lunch- I had some friends over and I served them some Whole30 deliciousness. Tri-tip and roasted asparagus with a side of fresh sliced strawberries.
Dinner was odd, but delicious. Fried eggs and pan cooked garlic swai. It was one of those "Let's see what we can find in the fridge and cook up quickly" meals.

Day 27
I wanted to change it up a little, so I grabbed some Bora Bora Fireballs from the freezer. Mmm these are so good. If you haven't made them yet please do! The recipes is HERE
Lunch- Garlic Swai (yum!) with leftover roasted asparagus and a side salad with red onion, pecans, tomato and Tessemae's zesty ranch.

Dinner- Daddypants helped out tonight and barbecued a tri-tip for us! We waited for dinner until after the gym, so we were HUNGRY by the time we ate. I popped open a can of green beans and added a diced tomato topped with pepper and a spritz of balsamic vinegar. I have been so busy that I fell behind on dishes. I had to resort to using a Christmas salad plate! There are 2 happy snowmen hiding beneath my meal.

I did my usual Zumba workout tonight and, as always, it kicked my rear! I am starting to feel a little stronger and the moves are becoming a little easier. I can't wait to see where I am in another month or two!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Whole 20 Day 21 (pt 2) 22. 23. 24. and 25

Did I enter a time warp? Where did the last 4 days go? Seriously...I blinked and the weekend was no only was Tuesday! Yikes!
I have so much to catch up on. Let's see...where did I leave off?
Friday after the gym i had to whip together a quick dinner so I used cooked some broccoli, added leftover roast beef and seasoned it with garlic, ginger and coconut aminos (soy free soy sauce substitute). It was a pretty good Broccoli Beef substitute. 

Saturday- Breakfast was the Usual.
Lunch was roast beef lettuce wraps with a drizzle of Tessemae's Whole 30 approved salad dressing with a side of sliced strawberries.

Look at that deliciousness! Butter lettuce  lean roast beef, red onion, tomatoes and Zesty Ranch Tessemae's.
Daddypants wanted a nice steak so I picked up some bone in New York strip steaks to throw on the grill for dinner. Sadly, a grill hiccup caused our beautiful steaks to turn into near-charcoal. We are talking full on grill on fire action. We were able to make the best of it and ate our steaks with a little side salad.  There will be no picture of the steak. No one needs to see that .

Sunday- My mom and her husband came in for Easter weekend.  Breakfast before church was The Usual. We had a long stretch between breakfast and a late lunch, so I nibbled on a homemade Lara bar. 
For lunch we salvaged the rest of the steak and made a big salad with tomato, onion, Tessemae's Zesty Ranch, and a few chopped pecans for crunch. 
Dinner- This was a comedy of errors. It was supposed to be ready at 6:30 but we didn't eat until almost 8. The grill was too cool then too hot so we ditched it for the oven. I roasted 2 beautiful tri-tips, broiled some asparagus, made garlicky mashed cauliflower and had a little side salad. The non Whole 30-ers in the group had rosemary yeast rolls as well. 
I was in such a rush to eat after a long evening that I snapped this super fast picture.

Monday- I worked a long day at work and had to run Miss Bits back and forth to school. It was a long rough day. Emotionally I was shot. By the end of the day all I wanted was a piece of cake and a bag of chips. Thankfully, I powered through and stayed on track. I wasn't happy about it then, but I am now.
Breakfast was The Usual
Lunch was a salad of lettuce, tomato, red onion, chopped pecans, tri-tip and Tessemae's Zesty Ranch. 
When I got home just after 5 I was in no mood to figure out food so I ate some scrambled eggs to stave off cravings while I figured things out. I spent some time with Miss Bits while Daddypants went to the gym. After she was fed and asleep, I heated up the leftover tri-tip and cauliflower mash. 
I woke up today, Day 25, feeling much better. I have no idea why I was so off yesterday. I wanted to eat EVERYTHING and am SO glad that I didn't Phew!
Breakfast was The Usual.
Lunch was some pan cooked garlic Swai and a salad. Swai is quickly becoming a new favorite fish for me. It is easy to prepare and has a wonderful, light flavor. 

I have been wanting some pizza for a while. I really didn't care about cheese or bread, I just wanted to taste all the saucy, topping-y goodness. In order to satisfy the urge, I cooked up some Whole 30 safe Italian sausage. In a pan I sauteed sweet onion and mushrooms. Then I added safe tomato sauce, pizza seasoning and some chopped black olives. I tossed in the sausage and once it was heated through I served it up. It was amazing! It tasted just like a supreme pizza. 

It may not look pretty, but the taste was right on. I will definitely make this again. 
Ok, I think that is as caught up as I can get. I promise to not fall so far behind again!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Whole 30 Day 20 and 21 (Pt 1)

I had a nightmare last night. In my dream I was at a potluck and a friend had made all my favorite carb-laden foods. Brownies, pastry, ice cream and more! In my dream I ate it all. As I bit in to the chewy dark chocolate brownie I felt feelings of guilt. I had blown it. All that work and sacrifice was for nothing. I was so happy when I woke up and my Whole 30 was still on track. Phew! 

Thursday was an Easter party at Miss Bits' pre-school. I made sure to have a good breakfast (the Usual, of course!) so that I would be less tempted by all the goodies. Thankfully I am not the only parent concerned with nutrition as there were several fruit and veggie platters. I was able to much on my baby tomatoes and sugar snap peas and easily offer a "No thanks!" when offered cookies and candy. I got to watch Miss Bits hunt for eggs and run around with her friends. After the party we headed home and I had a late lunch of tri-tip and veggies. 

I got a good deal on a giant (and I do mean giant...9.5 pounds!) roast so seasoned it up and popped it in the oven. We invited my little brother over for dinner. We have a beautiful meal of roast beef, mashed cauliflower, green beans and roasted brussel sprouts.  Delish!

After dinner we zipped over to the gym  to get our sweat on. I love my Thursday night Zumba class. Nothing beats ending the day dripping in sweat!