What in the world am I eating?

Hola everyone and Happy Hump Day! Not much is going on in our home other than the usual for the summer which is wake up, breakfast, play, lunch, play, tv, play, dinner, play….Get the idea? I try to do as little planned activities as possible during the summer since I feel like I miss so much time during the school year from Lady S and Mister S. For a teacher, summer should be about recharging and doing nothing!

Now on to the guts of the post. I get asked often how many calories I eat during the day, what my grocery bill looks like, what exactly is it that I am eating. I think most people would be surprised to find that I do not eat salads and low calorie foods all day everyday. As I have said before I LOVE to eat food! I love good food! I am not opposed to eating a yeast roll with some butter either and Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits *insert fainting right here*. I am still consistently using the MyFitnessPal app to track calories and foods for a few reasons.

  1. Portion control accountability – while I have a firm grip on portion sizes, keeping this in mind when something is really good is hard to do! MFP keeps me accountable.
  2. Eyes bigger than Stomach Syndrome – this is commonly characterized as seeing good food, eating more than you should, and then feeling like a bloated guppyfish afterwards. This ties directly into portion control as well.
  3. I don’t trust myself….YET – ok this is a really honest reflection of why I still use the app for daily calorie control. Being overweight my entire life, I have to have something that puts things into perspective and MFP does this for me. I have tried to go without MFP and it was during that time I lost zero and gained a few.

Now how many calories do I eat and what does it look like?

I work really hard to NET no more than 1500 calories per day. This looks a little different depending on if I work out on a given day or not. The best way that I can explain it is in two different scenarios. Hope this makes sense!

  • NON WORKOUT DAY – NET no more than 1500 calories although on no workout days it can be rather difficult some days depending on the week of the month *hint hint*. So for breakfast I may eat about 350-400 calories, Lunch is about 500 or so, and dinner sums up the rest. I am very careful these days to drink only water because the last thing I want is to miss some good eating because I drank a COKE! Remember that drinking calories will kill your journey!
  • WORKOUT DAY – On a typical workout I do between 30-45 minutes of solid cardio and at least 30 minutes of targeted weightlifting depending on the muscle group I am working for the day. I will admit that I go pretty hard at the gym. If I am going to spend 1.5 hours of my night there, I intend to make it count. I typically burn between 550-675 calories per workout depending on which muscle group I am working and which cardio equipment I use (Arc Trainer, elliptical, or treadmill). On these days I eat at least 1700-1800 calories BECAUSE I know that I will burn about a third of those off making my NET on those days around 1200-1300 calories. There have been days that I have not eating enough and after getting home from the gym find that I have netted around 1000-1100 calories which is NOT enough for me and not recommended for women. On those nights I come home and have a healthy snack or else I will wake up in the morning really hungry!

Below are two screen shots of my logging on MFP. The first being a workout day and the second being a nonworkout day. At this point I do not eat back my workout calories. Personally, I feel like it defeats my purpose.

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So you can see for yourself what my tracking looks like! I do eat fast food BUT try my hardest to make healthy choices. I don’t deprive myself of things that taste good and I am not starving!

Now lastly….Grocery shopping…..Oh I loathe this simple activity more than anything. I would rather stand out in the sun and get bitten my mosquitoes. Really…..The only time this is relaxing is when Mister S does it and I get to stay home preferably alone 😉 The challenge when we made THE change was how to affordably incorporate fruits and veggies into our diet without breaking the grocery budget. For a long time we were faithful Walmart, Food Lion, Harris Teeter shoppers and yes you can score some good deals but I haven’t seen decent deals on any fruits and veggies from any of those store. Costco has some really good deals because you can buy them in bulk. So after spending years being an Aldi snob, I bit the bullet and decided to try them out. I will say that the fresh produce and veggies I find have been amazing! .99 strawberries, 1.50 cantaloupes, 3.99 watermelons, 2lb bags of plums, peaches, grapes for 1.98? Sign me up for all of this! I haven’t brought one veggie or fruit that was less than good quality. If you eat organic everything then of course this isn’t the place for you. Head over to Whole Foods! Which might I add has some of the best meats I have ever eaten! The price is higher but the quality really is zero to none. And what about frozen veggies? Yes we buy and eat quite a bit of frozen veggies. Sometimes fresh veggies simply aren’t feasible for our family depending on the menu for the week. You can find organic frozen veggies that are just as good as the fresh kind.

So with all that said, feel free to follow me on MFP, user name Jorasims, and you can see what I eat everyday, all day! Hopefully it helps you to see that you can still eat like a normal person and lose weight too!

Til Next Time,

Ro

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Cooking, Measurements, and Serena’s Cakes

This week has been fantastic in our house! Aside from the fact that it’s summertime, we have literally done very little other than enjoy each other’s company. I could probably skip going to the gym based on the amount of running around I have had to do with Lady S. An (Almost) Three year old is a world of fun and she goes nonstop! Where she gets the energy I have no idea! The challenge this summer has been keeping her entertained and feeding her. Let me explain. Kids eat a lot of food. I sometimes wonder if she has a bottomless pit for a stomach because every 3 hours this kid is asking for a meal or a snack. It just depends on the hour of the day. Thankfully Lady S is a lover of simple things…bananas, strawberries, any kind of fruit she can get her hands on.

We’ve been cooking quite a bit this week since I am home everyday. I thoroughly enjoy cooking with Lady S and love it even more when Mr.S takes over in the kitchen. It makes my life so much easier. The downside to being home everyday is the temptation to snack.

So in honor of cooking and things that I covet and that are healthy and delicious…..Here’s my list:

  • Hummus – The BEST hummus I have ever had is from Aldi. Yes Aldi. Most grocers sell the Sabra brand or their own but it is nothing in comparison to Aldi’s. Try the Roasted Red Pepper one yourself and pair it with some pretzels or chips of your choice.
  • Grilled Chicken – I LOVE grilled chicken to the point of craziness! Thanks to Pinterest I find so many yummy lo-cal recipes or some that can be tweaked to be lo-cal.
  • Greek Yogurt – This stuff can used for just about anything! A meat tenderizer, a base for dips, a snack… Mr. S is a lover of chips and dip so I found this wonderful recipe to cut the calories only 20 per 2 tbsp serving!
  • Peaches, Strawberries, Squash, Oh My! – Tis the season of fresh fruits and veggies! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again! Get in your fruits and veggies! There are so many fresh options this time of year. Hit your local farmer’s market to see what they have to offer and eat away! Guilt-free of course!

Now….the last part of my post….let me bless you with these pics first

The greatness that is Serena Williams. I realize that some haters people look at Serena and think that her body is way too much…Manly even…let me just say that you people who think this way are haters! I am well aware that she has more muscle than some women and men prefer but I have always thought her body was impeccable. The amount of discipline that she must put in at the gym is more than I am willing to do. I’ll just be honest. However her waist to cakes ratio is interesting to say the least. Ever since the puberty God’s descended upon me years ago one thing that I recognized is that my own waist to cakes ratio is somewhat bananas. There are a variety of types of body shapes of women. You can look here to see where you fall. I am a pear shape which means my upper body and waist are smaller than my hips (no kidding?!).

Since the beginning of my journey I have kept up with my measurements because honestly, sometimes the scale just doesn’t move but the inches do. There have been weeks where I have lost maybe 2 lbs or so but have gone down a clothes size. There will be moments like this where you get discouraged because of that darn scale. I urge you to keep up with your measurements and in those moments go back to those and see the progress you’ve made.

Here are mine from September 2012 to June 2013. As you can see, the waist to cakes ratio is still bananas but heck, that’s just the way it is for a pear-shaped lady!

September 2012/June 2013

  • Waist ->>>>> 47 inches / 37 inches = 10 inches lost
  • Hips ->>>>>> 59 inches / 47 inches = 12 inches lost
  • Neck ->>>>>> 14 inches / 13.2 inches = .8 inches lost
  • Upper Torso -> 42 inches / 34 inches = 8 inches lost

So with all those inches lost (30.8 overall!!!) I have dropped clothes sizes from a size 26 to currently a size 16/18 in bottoms and a 14/16 in dresses! These are sizes I haven’t seen in a while!

Now….I am off to watch some t.v.!
‘Til the next time,

Ro

Salad, Sweat, and Tears….

When I initially started this journey I knew it would be hard. One of the biggest mistakes that people make when it comes to health is they are fixated on losing weight. We are literally bombarded in the media about supplements, pills, some new revolutionary exercise where you are suppose to 10 lbs in 7 days. FALSE folks! There is no such thing. When we approach health in that way, I think it is a set up for disaster. Anyone can lose weight if they create enough of a caloric deficit (more on that later), but to truly get healthier and keep it off…that is a lifestyle change. Meaning the way that you thought about and interacted with food and the way you envision healthy has to change.

The first thing we had to tackle in our home was the food. The years of sweets, artificial colors, preservative laden, calorie dense food had to go. It was nothing short of a miracle when I didn’t die from throwing all that precious food out with the trash. Having an active toddler who suffers from food allergies, we had to do our due diligence and create a healthier kitchen for us if not for her. So out went the chips, the Oreos, the ice cream, the donuts, and the one thing that hurt me to my heart….the SWEET TEA! I could have easily given up all that other stuff but the southern sweet tea that had enough sugar to send a diabetic to heaven….Lawd….take me now I just can’t take it!


Ok so I wasn’t that dramatic but pretty close. Mr. S was not feeling the fact that the tea was gone but as I said before…this had to be a lifestyle change! Off to Costco I went and stocked up on bananas, blueberries, strawberries, apples, oranges, tomatoes, hummus, and salad mix. Now this is where it gets hairy. The kid will eat just about anything that has some sweetness to it and she has always been a fruit baby! Mr. S….well not so much! So out with the junk and in with the salad and fruits!

The next morning, in the dead of the July Hell Heat, I started off on my health journey walking, albeit slowly, about 2 miles in my neighborhood. Initially, I thought how easy until all those rolling hills started kicking my ass! Needless to say for the next week my legs were a throbbing mess, I was a pool of sweat and I had to shed a few tears by body hurt so bad.

Now hold your breath because yes I am going to disclose my actual weight…yes the real number. I realize that people have reservations telling their number but I don’t. The truth is at one time or another I was that weight. The truth is that while I hate that I let myself get there, I did. The most important thing is that I chose to change it.

I started this journey at ……….300 lbs give or take a few pounds….I can not begin to tell you how embarrassed I was to be that heavy.

Here is my 300 lbs pic….

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So remember this is where I started and we’ll see where I go 🙂

Til Next Time

Ro