May 062013
 

My cravings to eat compulsively or binge have already started to wane away, because I have allowed myself to eat whatever I want, whenever I want. Imagine that, allow myself to have any food, whenever I feel hungry….and I eat LESS

Last week when I met with my dietitian at The Emily Program, she talked to me about how there is a physical and mental part of everything we eat. The physical part is the nutrition, the mental part is how our brain reports back to our emotions about being full..or I could even say “fulfilled.”

She said I’m pretty good at the physically full/comfortable part of things, but not the mentally full.  Which is why I tend to overeat, have cravings, and can’t stop thinking about food.

I now need to make sure I have 3 meals and 3 snacks a day and even my snacks need to give my brain the message that I am fulfilled.   We put together some snacks based on things that I love and her nutritional know how.

One of key things is that whether our body eats a light cracker/cookie or a regular cracker/cookie our physical need may be filled,we gave ourselves a “grain” and maybe a “sugar”  but our mental side sees the light ones and how they have less fat, less calories, more empty processed stuff and isn’t fulfilled.

Our body mentally and physically also needs a grain/fat/protein/fruit or veggie  in every meal or snack…so a fat free or light yogurt is seen/processed as a dairy…where as a regular one is dairy, fat and fruit! Ooh, that regular yogurt hit a couple of the must haves of a meal or snack!  (yes, we need dairy but it doesn’t have to be in every meal or snack).

A bit of a “showstopper” for me, to tell my brain that a meal is over is fat and/or sugar.  So, if I have two Dove chocolates at the end of lunch, that tells my brain lunch is over..and it removes and/or majorly limits my compulsion to overeat, keep grazing, or eventually binge on something for fulfillment.

Snacks we put together for me to use this week for morning snack and afternoon snack (since evening snack is ice cream always!!)

Homemade trail mix: Cheerios, cashews, coated almonds, m&m’s (I make an amount with a mixture per her recipe that will last me 7-10 days)

Actual snacks:

  • homemade trail mix with 1/2 banana (or a small banana)
  • snack bag of regular crackers(CheezIts are my choice) with 2 light laughing cow/1 regular laughing cow/1 baby bel
  • snack bag of Goldfish with regular string cheese
  • regular single serving yogurt & two cookies (Oreos are my choice)
  • Chobani bites (small, sweet yogurt) with 100 calorie pack of regular buttered popcorn
  • 3-4 graham crackers and a regular pudding cup

She also suggested that I have a bit of chocolate after lunch 🙂

So far, I’m feeling much happier with food 🙂

<3 Merbear

Mar 272013
 

I chatted a bit about this in my PNP Trackstar Challenge Facebook group, so thanks to those of you that are reading this again. I thought this would be a good topic to bring up to all my readers.

I haven’t been to a WW meeting for two weeks until today (I was on business trips, couldn’t find another meeting out of town that would fit in either)…..I’m up 9 lbs from my last weigh in. Ugh. I’m very glad that I don’t have any more traveling for quite awhile..and this was the first time I have ever traveled for work. So, I think I will recoup (I actually reset my WW start weight to start over)….and I will be ready with a plan next time I business travel.

There are things that I need to remember to plan ahead for:

1) Barley’s Angel’s meetings..there will be beer..I will be tasting it and discussing it with my friends (1x a month)

2) Parties on weekends….my friends get together and do gaming parties with lots of snacks and alcohol

3) No last minute food challenges…have snacks on hand, meal plans on hand, preview menus or have a plan for when I can’t preview a menu

4) I’m a foodie and a beer geek…there are so many awesome (healthy or not so healthy) things to try out there…I want to try them because I love the variety and trying new things….same with when I see a new beer that I haven’t tried…need to save my activity and weekly extra points for those NOT for a random snack on a Tuesday night unless I’m hungry and need it!

We know what has worked for me before, I lost about 4 lbs at my meeting two weeks ago…so what gives? What worked?

1) Meal Planning – it was fun, I loved knowing what meals I could make/have ready all week and I loved having leftovers and lunches!

2) Previewing menus before going out – decide what I want ahead of time..so that I can just enjoy the company when I’m out

3) Bring my own snacks and drinks to house parties, no one cares what I’m drinking

4) Be my own best friend, put myself first…its hard for me to say no when I have pressure (even if its fun, non-threatening pressure)

5) I am better at managing my choices when I get my anxiety in check, so I need to meditate/yoga/exercise/take some me time DAILY

6) I feel like my Weight Watcher’s meetings are Wednesdays are definitely important, but its a group and not a buddy, I need to find a buddy who is doing Weight Watchers and also “gets it”, someone from my regular day-to-day life. I have so many support groups online…so I’m reaching out to friends who may want to be a buddy.

I’d love some suggestions you guys might have about eating out, needing a snack last minute..what do you eat?,

What you might do if you have several “food related” things going on in one week…..

What do you do to have some “me” time..how do you make sure and take it?

I’m glad that I finished Slimgenics…that wasn’t real life…it was SO restrictive so I know why I lost all the weight, but I wasn’t going to be able to maintain that lifestyle…I can’t say no to everything , all the time for the rest of my life.  Weight Watchers has taught me some great lessons on building healthy spaces, meal planning, etc…I just need to get it INTO MY HEAD!

Also, I LOVE that it is finally brightening up and getting a bit warmer here in Minnesnowta!  I am so much better at exercising when I can get outside!!!! Go away winter blahs!!! I need to get my running times back to something acceptable and I want to get back on my bike! YAY!!!

<3 Merbear

Mar 042013
 

Hi!

This week I lost a pretty good amount of weight! What’d I do? Nothing crazy, took some advice from friends like Kris and Mindy who commented on my post last week:

I thought about what makes me feel satisfied, what foods are “whole” also known as Power Foods on Weight Watchers. I thought about how much I eat out and how Kris reminded me that the nutritional information at restaurants isn’t always spot on. I didn’t go crazy with measuring but I also was a bit more careful with it.  I made sure to have fruits and veggies with every meal or snack.   I ate out less and I drank beer only one night and it was just samples with my Barley’s Angel’s group, I also cut out cola except for ONE night because I needed some caffeine and something that was diet. I think that having at least one fish night a week is really good for us, too. I’m a big fan of steelhead trout these days, it tastes and looks like salmon, but is way less expensive and is even a little more moist.

What made me feel satisfied:  home made food

What did I drink: water, sparkling water, tea, coffee, skim milk (some diet soda but without any cola)

What did I prepare: LOTS of Weight Watcher’s and Hungry Girl recipes!!

How did I do it: I sat down on Sunday and whipped through the Weight Watcher’s recipe pages and printed out what looked good like a madwoman and threw them in a folder.  I did the same with my Hungry Girl to the Max cookbook.

Step 1: Grab all the recipes you can in about 30 minutes and get them all in one spot either in a book or printed out

Step 2: Pick 5 that you want to make that week

Step 3: Make a shopping list of what you don’t already have in the house

Step 4: SHOP! 🙂 🙂

Step 5: Cook what I want for dinner

Step 6: (if its a Sunday or Saturday, cook what I want for lunches!)

It seems simple enough, but I wasn’t doing this very often, now I will be. This week I have a whole week of lunches, plus other leftovers if I get too busy to cook during the week. I get to eat  Weight Watchers Baked Pasta with Butternut Squash for lunch this week..mmm with cheese, squash and spaghetti, mmmm!!!!

Weight Watcher's Baked Pasta with Butternut Squash and Ricotta

Weight Watcher’s Baked Pasta with Butternut Squash and Ricotta

Then leftover at home I have chili and chicken parmigiana!! All were recipes from the weekend!

I’m also prepared to make buffalo chicken fingers this week as well 🙂

We learned this last month in Weight Watchers and it finally has hit my brain and is proving to be true, preparing my own food and planning ahead what I  will eat, especially dinners…really helps me stay focused on my points for the day because I feel satisfied and PROUD of what *I* made…I know what’s in it, I know its good for me, and I know its tasty already. I look forward to the meals I made or will make for dinner, and it keeps me on track all day. I know how many points I can have the rest of the day! (This can be translated to calories or whatever type of plan you are on)

Another good thing about prepping ahead: you get all the dishes done on prep day instead of washing pots/pans/mixing bowls etc repeatedly all week..its SO NICE!

I kept the ball rolling…I made ahead and planned meals for this week, too.  Loving this!

Oh, and I’ve earned 12 activity points for WW this week so far (I go Wed – Tue). Add something active and fun into your weekend as a social event or something with a loved one. I’ve been lifting weights and walking/running on the treadmill, too.

<3 Merbear

 

Feb 252013
 

hmm

Food planning, food prepping, eating food, shopping for food, reading menus, reading nutrition labels…thinking about food when I’m not hungry, thinking about food when I am hungry.  Worried about what I eat before I eat it. Tracking every bite that goes into my mouth. Researching nutrition of every bite that goes in my mouth in order to track it.

I’m so sick of food! I want it out of my brain!  I hate having to constantly think about it!

I did a tracking challenge for the last 8 weeks and I succeeded. It was called “Progress not Perfection” and it was put on by Dani Holmes-Kirk..she is a friend of mine, a Weight Watchers leader and a blogger on “Weight Off My Shoulders”

The challenge was to track at least 5 out of 7 days a week for 8 weeks. Well, I tracked 7/7 most of those weeks. One week I was 5/7 and another I was 6/7, but I succeeded. It was January and February. Guess what? I didn’t lose weight. Nope, I never lied on my tracker…but I was constantly over points.

In the last two weeks I’ve made a push to get more activity in daily, its the focus of the month for Weight Watchers and I saw I need a minimum of 12 points of activity a week, which I wasn’t getting. So I walk more/run more I made a plan to do that in order to pump it up.  But guess what? I’m eating all those points…and still going over. BUT, at least its WAY less over than it was before.

I reset my “start” weight at WW last week hoping it would help motivate me only see the scale go down, but I fear I’ve failed again and the scale is going to go up on Wednesday. I’m exercising my butt off today and Tuesday in hopes to at least come out at a maintain…ugh, I hate food!

I’m hungry right now and I’m afraid to eat something because I’m afraid that its going to be the wrong thing to satiate my hunger and then I just wasted points on something that didn’t work on making me feel full. I will eat don’t worry, obviously I eat. But ugh, every day this is a challenge.

Then, if I go enough days without filling myself with what I”m craving, I finally bust out and eat a cheeseburger on the weekend or something. Which technically its fine, but I tried so hard to fill a craving all week that I really don’t have enough points for it.

Thanks for listening to me complain, I would LOVE if you guys have any ideas for staying within my points (if its calorie limits or food choice goals for you guys, that’s cool, too)!!

<3 Merbear

Jan 232013
 

As you all know I’m a WW member now and wow, the program has gotten so full of helpful habits, tips & routines.

This month the routine is adding a fruit or vegetable to every meal.  I had to remind myself at first, but now I do it automatically. It might seem like a chore at first…but adding a banana, strawberries or a melon to breakfast; cherry tomatoes, an apple or oranges with lunch; or,some salad and cooked veggies with dinner has really made me feel fuller and more satisfied with my meals and snacks. I am actually now starting to crave certain veggies..like roasted brussels sprouts!

One habit I am SUPER proud of though is planning out my meals and points before I eat them.  This is a slow habit to build because I’m not a very good meal planner. But, knowing what I’m going to have for dinner…really helps me to stay on track all day. I’m looking forward to my yummy planned ahead dinner and I know what snacks/meals I can have during my work day and not feel guilty or worried about “fitting in” dinner.

Last night I made Steelhead trout. This fish tastes and looks exactly like salmon except it is more tender and has less fat/calories/points and the same amount of protein 🙂  By the way it was really easy, I just cooked it in a packet of foil in the oven at 375 for 15 minutes. It was PERFECT. (Oh, I put lemon juice, a couple sprays of olive oil, salt, pepper, onion powder and dill) It was a household favorite!

As part of my counting up points before I eat them, I had a Vietnamese take-out victory today. We went to a local, only open for lunch during the week, Vietnamese restaurant to pick up lunch for work today.  I ordered the chicken & vegetable stir fry with fried rice.   I already had my breakfast points in my tracker, I also have my homemade baked chicken fingers for dinner in there too, and then I put in the chicken & vegetable stir fry (2 cups).  After that…I saw how many points I had left for the day. Determined I wanted a snack with points this afternoon combined with my apple, so I took that out. Then, I saw how many points I had left and I MEASURED out 1/2 a cup of fried rice (I keep measuring cups at work!) and threw the rest away!!

Measured my fried rice!

Measured my fried rice!

Threw the rest away!

Threw the rest away!

 

Tracker

 

How about that?  Rockin’ the healthy habits!!!

<3 Merbear

 

P.S.

I’m all set for Fitbloggin’ 13 in Portland! I hope to see you there!

Jan 032013
 

No! Seriously! They’re good!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

I got home from work, hubby wanted to make tacos…but he had to do some work first..and I was pretty hungry.

Did I eat chips? No

Did I eat crackers and cheese? No

I said, hmm….I feel like having brussels sprouts…seriously! You can go from raw brussels sprouts to a yummy roasted snack in 20 minutes!! NSV!!! Vegetable snacking!

I grabbed my bag of sprouts, chopped off the bottoms, split them in half, tossed them in olive oil and baked them at 425 for 20 minutes! Voila! YUMMMY!

While I was waiting for them to bake I had a banana, a quick, sweet, tasty healthy treat.

But then, while I was waiting for tacos to be ready…I snacked on roasted salty brussels sprouts and watched TV…ate it just like popcorn or chips…mmmm mmm!!!

Another yummy vegetable appetizer that I’ve had  was at the Cheesecake Factory of all places…..on the Skinnylicious menu they have roasted artichokes…sooo yummy, too!

Keep those eyes open for new tastes!

Dec 172012
 

I just need to get it out!

Last week, after a month at weight watchers, not only did I not lose, I gained back everything plus some that I lost in the last month! Whaaaat?  I’m so mad!

And now…its Monday….I have tomorrow and another weigh in coming up on Wednesday, and I do not want to go. I’m 50 points over..no, not 50 points over daily points…50 points over even if you count in my weeklies and my activity points! (not like I got many of those, that’s a whole different story).

I was going to turn it all around today….I ate a healthy breakfast, I packed a good lunch, I was all ready to go…and then…I got a fever on my way to work, hacking cough….could barely think….I basically got sent home…fine..ok…sick

I took some work home with me to occupy my time….but my feelings got in the way, I felt sick, mopey, blah…and I kept picking at the kitchen. Doesn’t it suck when you are too sick to go to work, but not sick enough to be stuck in bed sleeping…so you just, “mope”? I know you guys know where I’m coming from.

Oh but also too sick to walk on the treadmill, or go outside in the crummy/snowy/freezing rainy weather, or exercise…yeah my throat is bad…so all I can do is sit here, pouting, watching TV, and fighting every single second to not go into the kitchen.

Then I get home and hubby hides in the basement, totally not his fault, he doesn’t want to get sick, and I agree…but, I also don’t have a diversion from being BORED and feeling bad for myself.

So I’m hoping this complaining, whiny, feeling guilty about eating anything in my face post…helps me just sit here and be a grown up and quit eating…

Sigh….I just want to at least stay the same weight on Friday..please WW, be nice to me…

I think I will go to my WW meeting, even though I’m freaked as to what it’ll say 🙁

<3 Merbear

 

P.S. I need to look at this more maybe….

August 2011

August 2012

 

 

March 2012

 

Nov 2012

Nov 2012

Nov 202012
 

This has been my first week on Weight Watchers after losing 40 lbs on Slimgenics January – November.

Let’s say, I thought it’d be easy…like WAY easy. With Slimgenics I had extremely limited choices and it was emotionally hard and a lot of work to make sure all my meals were within the lists of allowed foods etc.

On Wednesday I started Weight Watchers Points Plus and I was ECSTATIC to have choices again in my life…basically…if its food…it has points…and you can eat it……

well….I did…..

Umm….guess how that went? Well, I’m talking emotionally and what I think I’m in for….I haven’t had my weekly weigh in yet.

Yeah…..you know that WW phrase that goes “Write it before you bite it?” Yeah, should have done that…cause whenever I do….its perfect…I make a good choice, take the right portion (which sometimes is don’t eat it at all). I learn lessons of exchanging this for that. Heck, I made it through a day with macaroni & cheese, beer, candied popcorn & peppermint bark without going over points..but it was cause I knew what I was in for at the beginning of the day and I was super aware.

I’m also dealing with the fact that I started an Active Link assessment in my first week, too.  For those of you that don’t know, an Active Link is like a fit bit, you wear it on your body and it records your activity and then you upload your activity to the Active Link folks and then it turns around and reports to you how many activity points you’ve earned.  Well, during assessment week…you wear it, you do your normal activities…but you don’t get to “earn” the activity points on your tracker.  So for a couple days I guesstimated…we know how that goes…then a friend advised that I manually do my activity points and keep track of how many I earn and then use on a piece of paper…well I did that…oh and I was in the HOLE…by quite a bit. So, I’ve been extra active this week making up the difference…been pretty good, too…until..ummm….I just sat down now to track my lunch…

…..I went to Caribou….

….I trust Caribou and their Northern Lite drinks….

….They have a Lite version of the new Caramel Budino…uses skim milk, and no whip…how bad could it be…..??

20 POINTS

***update*** the regular one with skim milk and no whip is 20 the NORTHERN LITE SALTED CARAMEL BUDINO, medium sized, is 7!! YIPPEE!

How many points do I get in a day? 29! Did I have any weeklies left…no…can I make that much up in activity today cuz I weigh in and reset tomorrow…umm…no…maybe I could get 5 points for activity, but that’s it…I’m not super woman

Do I need to eat dinner tonight and am I even sitting here hungry right now for a snack at 4pm? YES!!

Okay okay….I’m done panicking..my first week back, my first weigh in back, I’m sure its going to SUCK BIG TIME….but life happens….from this point forward….and I’m sorry if you’re one of my friends and we’re going out for dinner or trying to decide on something to eat…or my husband and I’m meal planning….I am going to:

WRITE BEFORE I BITE

Which is going to involve way more planning and thinking ahead than I thought I’d have to do. But this is worth it because this is a life skill that I was trying to avoid since I left Slimgenics and hated all that planning.  But yeah, I need to do this…I get more choices..and more food choices are worth it. Cuz I can make much yummier stuff than I used to.

I made 3 brand new recipes this week that I’d never tried before and they were a hit with my husband and with a house guest we had one night. They were planned ahead, healthy and tasty!! So, I look forward to doing more of that and less of all the stuff that went crappy this week.

Oh and…starting Thursday….I actually get to TRACK and SEE how many activity points I’ve earned and used….I think I got a bit frustrated with that and I shouldn’t have done my Active Link assessment the first week of Weight Watchers….I had to many other things to figure out.

I’m still nervous about my weigh in tomorrow…maybe it won’t be that bad???

<3 Merbear

P.S.
I JUST FOUND OUT THAT THE NORTHERN LITE CARAMEL BUDINO IS NOT 20 POINTS,  thank goodness for finding the right nutritional information…but still, I should have found it BEFORE I drank it, not after.

McCormick Recipe Refresh – Crockpot Slimgenics Pot Roast

 Food, foodie, recipes, slimgenics  Comments Off on McCormick Recipe Refresh – Crockpot Slimgenics Pot Roast
Oct 302012
 

Priorfatgirl Dawn is having a McCormick Recipe Refresh Contest through November 2nd! This is my blog post for the recipe I refreshed with McCormick spices!

As most of you know I’m using the Slimgenics program to lose weight and so far I’ve kept 38 lbs off, but I have more to go!

There are some limitations on Slimgenics, so I can’t have what you’d call a more traditional pot roast recipe…carrots and white or yellow onions are a no-no to those of us in the weight loss plan.

I *love* the new McCormick Perfect Pinch salt-free seasonings that have been showing up recently, I got to try quite a few at Fitbloggin ’12 as well.

I refreshed a salty, old-fashioned pot roast recipe to make it McCormick & Slimgenics worthy!

picture of pot roast in the crockpot

Yummy Pot Roast and Broth

Crockpot Pot Roast

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours OR 8 hours

Ingredients:

  • Small Roast (3-5 lbs)
  • McCormick Perfect Pinch Garlic & Herb Salt Free Seasoning
  • Morton’s Light Salt (OR regular salt)*
  • Olive Oil
  • 4-5 green onions
  • 4-5 stalks of celery
  • 4-5 red potatoes
  • Slimgenics Chicken Bullion Soup Mix Prepared  (OR 18 1/2 ounces of chicken broth)*

*using regular salt/standard chicken broth is also VERY TASTY, but is not Slimgenics approved

Directions:

  1. Rub Olive oil all over the roast, enough for a light coating
  2. Sprinkle a generous amount of McCormick’s Perfect Pinch Garlic & Herb Salt Free Seasoning on all sides of the roast
  3. Sprinkle salt on all sides as well
  4. Place roast in your crock pot
  5. Chop up green onions, celery and potatoes, then place around the roast
  6. Add in chicken broth

Cooking:

Two options:

  • Set on high for 4 hours, check after 3 if you want medium rare, otherwise after 4 hours you should get medium well
  • Set on low for 8 hours, if you can check after 6 hours you could stop for medium rare, othewise after 8 hours it’ll be medium to medium well.

Temp guide:

( These are NOT USDA recommendation numbers, these are the chef recommended temps for doneness)

  • 130 degrees – medium rare to medium
  • 145 degrees – medium
  • 160 degrees – medium well
  • 170+ degrees – well done

 

ENJOY!!

Pot Roast Dinner!

Popchips Contest Winner & Norwex Party on Saturday!

 awesome, contests, Food, foodie, friends, fun, lifestyle, popchips, weekend  Comments Off on Popchips Contest Winner & Norwex Party on Saturday!
Oct 052012
 

The Popchips winner!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Second…

I’m having a Norwex party tomorrow folks 🙂  If you are in Minnesota and are free around 3pm….come! Bring a friend and get a free gift! I love meeting new locals. I made pumpkin bread, pumpkin whoopie pies, and I’ll have a key lime cheeseball, you know you want to come!!! Food and SCIENCE…Norwex is uber geeky cool cleaning stuff!

I went to a Norwex party, was awed by how well the products work! I am excited to not go through rolls and rolls of paper towels and napkins. To not have to keep stocking up on sponges, wipes and cleaners. You have to see how this stuff works!
If you can’t come or just want to preview…check out my friend Anna Berend’s Norwex page….call her or I with questions or orders towards my party if you wish! http://www.annaberend.norwex.biz/

Bring a friend for a free gift! Drop me a note here if you’re bringing someone 🙂

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During the past several hundred years, human activity has significantly altered our global environment, and the negative effects of this are becoming alarmingly clear. No longer can we ignore the warning signs from nature. This trend can be changed if we all work together and take honest responsibility for our planet. It is a fact; household pollutants have a profound impact on our environment.
A radical reduction in the use of chemicals is an important step to improve the health of our planet and our quality of life.
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