Wednesday, January 30, 2013

WIAW - A Typical Weekday

Last week I shared a weekend example of  "What I Ate", so this week I'll share a typical weekday.

Breakfast (219 calories): "Green Monster" - current blend is SoDelicious Unsweetened Coconut milk, 1 scoop chocolate whey protein powder, 1 tbsp cacao powder, 1 tbsp PB2 (powdered peanut butter)
I eat the same exact thing every single "school day" for breakfast.  I sometimes mix it up with eggs or pancakes on the weekends, but this is my weekday staple!
Lunch (364 calories): one of these salads in a jar
This week's selection is Asian style - miso ginger dressing, edamame, chicken, and mandarin oranges.  I also have a piece of fruit (clementines, a blood orange, an apple, etc.)
Lunches are prepped and packed on Sundays, so I eat the same thing every day for a week.
Afternoon pick me up: green tea and dark chocolate! (84 calories)
Every afternoon when my students are at their special, this is my treat!
Afterschool snack (100 calories): apple with PB2 (mixed with water) and a natural diet soda (sweetened with Stevia - not a usual thing I drink, but I had some in the fridge!)
My usual afternoon snack is a half cup of Greek yogurt sweetened with a few drops of Stevia and 1/4 cup of frozen blueberries.  I mixed it up a little today!
Dinner (480 calories): Baked chicken breast w/ a tbsp of spaghetti sauce and a sprinkle of cheese, baked sweet potato w/ 1 oz. of cranberry cinnamon goat cheese, swiss chard sautteed with olive oil
Dinners are typically a lean protein, lots of veggies, and maybe a grain like quinoa or brown rice.
Dessert (220 calories): 5 Dove Peanut Butter Milk Chocolate Promises - SO GOOD...should never have bought these!
Total Calories: 1600
Exercise: 35 minutes jogging on treadmill (5.0-6.0mph), 60 minutes yoga



Saturday, January 26, 2013

Play That Funky Music

One of the biggest motivators to keep going during a run is what I'm listening to! I can't stand to run without listening to something.  My phone died during the last 1.4 miles of an 8 mile run on Monday and I about went crazy.  Luckily it was just the last part!!

As I've mentioned before, one of my favorite things to listen to while running is the podcast that Jillian Michaels does.  It is laugh out funny as well as informative.  You can find it on iTunes.  Each episode is about 45-50 minutes long, and they come out around once a week. 

On longer runs, I typically listen to the podcast and then listen to music for the other 30 minutes.  My pal and former college roommate, Kellie, asked me what was on my playlist - so I thought I'd share my most current faves! I don't listen to these on shuffle either, it's always in this order - planned out so the songs "One More" and "The Fighter" come on right about the time I think I'm going to give up.

  1. I Knew You Were Trouble (Taylor Swift)
  2. Reckless (Jeremy Camp) - this one is a new fave, the album comes out 2/12!! Can't wait!
  3. Want U Back (Cher Lloyd)
  4. Tonight (tobyMac feat. John Cooper)
  5. Ready or Not (Bridgit Mendler)
  6. Who's That Chick? (David Guetta & Rihanna)
  7. Hall of Fame (The Script feat.
  8. One More (Superchick) - this is on EVERY running playlist I make
  9. The Fighter (Gym Class Heroes feat. Ryan Tedder) - also on all playlists & I blogged about it.
  10. Let Me Think About It (Ida Corr)
  11. I'm Alive (Jeremy Camp)
  12. One More Night (Maroon 5)

That's usually as far as I get on the playlist.  There's also some Justin Bieber (All Around the World and Never Say Never), Usher, Karmin, and Kelly Clarkson on the list but I hardly get to those songs.  My current faves are all at the beginning!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

What I Ate Wednesday

I always like checking out the "What I Ate" link-up at Peas & Crayons.  It's fun to see what other folks are snacking on, and it gives me new meal ideas!  Here's a peek at what I ate on Sunday, it's a little different than my weekday food routine.  Plus it is extra high in carbs because I had an 8 mile run scheduled for the next day!

Breakfast: Banana Bread Baked Oatmeal, fruit salad, hot tea

Lunch Salad: baby lettuce, carrots, walnuts, dried cranberries, feta, balsamic dressing

Afternoon Snack: tall soy latte, marshmallow dream bar from Starbucks (also had an apple with a tablespoon of PB when I got home!)
Dinner: Tostitos Multi-Grain chips and Bean Chili (1 can/jar each: black beans, kidney beans, corn, chipotle salsa mixed with spices and about 2 cups of chicken stock - simmer on low for an hour or two! EASY!)
SO. MUCH. WATER. Extra hydration to prep for the long run the next day!
I also had another serving of that delicious baked oatmeal topped with a tablespoon of strawberry jam as "dessert"!
This was about 1850 calories.  This is more than I typically eat in a day - especially when it is a "rest" day and I'm not exercising (like Sunday).  But, I didn't plan out my lunch strategy well and was really hungry midafternoon.  Plus, I was trying to make sure I was well fueled for the next day. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Goal Update

I recently saw a "goal board" on Pinterest that I loved!  I was already tracking my weight loss using 2 jars filled with stones - one for pounds lost, one for pounds to lose.  I was also starring my calendar for workouts, and listing out goals to achieve.  I like how this combines all of that into one neat package.

So, I took out an old dry erase/cork board combo I had stashed away and I created my own Goal Board!
It sits right on my dresser, so I see it every single day.  I have some of my favorite quotes, a calendar to star my workout days, a weight tracker, and my list of goals.
Speaking of's me erasing one off the top of the list!

This weekend some of my running buddies and I did a local 5K.  I have been staring at the goal "Sub 30:00 5K" since November, and I knew I was going to do it this time - and I did!
My typical average pace is 10:30-11:30 per mile, depending on my distance.  To run a 5K in under 30 minutes, your average pace has to be around 9:40.  It's much faster than I typically run, or even really like running, but I knew I'd have been so mad at myself if I didn't go for it!  I felt like I was going to throw up when I crossed the finish line, but a post-race pancake meal fixed that - haha!
How do you track your goals??

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Banana Bread Baked Oatmeal

I love baked oatmeal.  I've shared traditional baked oatmeal, a pumpkin version, and a lightened up version!  This one is both delicious and clean!

3 cups rolled oats
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp ground flax meal
1 egg
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 ripe mashed banana
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cardamom (optional)
1.  Mix all of the ingredients together
2.  Spread into a greased baking dish (9x9 or pie plate)
3. Refrigerate several hours or overnight
4. Bake 40-45 minutes at 350
Nutritional Info:
(for 8 servings)
Calories: 259
Fat: 10g
Fiber: 6g
Carbs: 35.4g
Protein: 7g

Saturday, January 12, 2013

What if you don't?

I love listening to Jillian Michaels' podcasts when I do my longer runs.  She and her producer, Janice, are hilarious together.  I get laughs and information while I run!  Recently, Jillian said something in a podcast that has stuck in my head.

A woman called in and was asking for advice on something, I don't remember what it was specifically, but I do remember Jillian telling her that in a moment when she's about to give in to a craving, she should stop and ask herself - "What will happen if you don't _____ ?" 

As in - what will happen if you don't eat that ice cream, or pick the fast food place,or sit on the couch instead of exercising?
It was a new outlook for me.  Rarely, when I'm in the moment of giving into a bad habit, do I stop and ask myself What will happen if you don't?  I almost always ask what will happen if I do - and I can almost always justify giving in.  "If I DO have this extra piece of chocolate, it's okay because I'll still have a calorie deficit today, just not as much." or "If I DO choose to skip this workout, it's okay because I did work out really hard yesterday."

But the answer to "What if I don't" is different. 

What if I DON'T eat the extra piece of chocolate? Answer: I'll stay within my calorie range and reach my goal faster.  I feel good that I made the right choice.  I won't die of starvation because of one piece of chocolate.  I'll go to bed feeling better.

What if I DON'T skip this workout? Answer:  I'll feel better.  I'll burn more calories.  I'll sleep better tonight.  I'll get to my goal faster.  I'll fit in those jeans sooner.

Next time you find yourself eyeing up the ice cream, or contemplating skipping a workout - ask yourself "What if I don't?"


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Chicken Sausage Chili

I threw this little chili/stew together while wandering the grocery store last weekend.  I went in with a loose plan of putting together something like my favorite White Bean Chicken Chili or Taco Soup - a couple cans of beans with tomatoes in the crock pot.

Then, I was in the meat department and spotted the italian sausage.  This is not a food I eat often, or really can say I ever have a craving for, but for some reason it jumped out at me.  I threw it in with my beans and this delicious chili was AWESOME.  Served with a side of multi-grain tortilla chips and sprinkled with a little cheese?  Delicious.  And easy.  And healthy!!
Spicy Chicken Sausage Chili
1 package mild Italian chicken sausage links (I used the Nature's Promise brand at Giant, 140 cals a link)
1 can (14 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (14 oz) kidney beans, drained and rinsed (dark or light)
1 large can (28 oz) fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 green bell pepper (or red, or any color), diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 gloves garlic, minced
1/2-1 tsp each: cumin, oregano, smoked paprika (depending on how much spice you want!)
salt/pepper if desired


1.  Brown the sausage links lightly on the stove top.  You don't need to cook them all the way through, just enough to make them easier to cut.

2.  Place all ingredients in the crock pot. (I mixed mine in a big bowl first and then dumped it into a Pam sprayed crock pot)

3.  Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.

4.  Serve with chips and your favorite toppings!

Nutritional Information per serving (makes 6 total)
Calories: 293
Fat: 6g
Carbs: 34g
Protein: 24g


Sunday, January 6, 2013

How I Plan My Workouts

Since this year's word is focus, I thought I'd share with you how I keep my focus on my workouts!  It's a super simple method, and it works great for me!  Basically, I just use a blank calendar.  I printed mine for free from TomKat Studio.

At the beginning of the week, I sit down and sketch out my workout plans for that week (and sometimes the next as well).  The top B&W calendar in the picture is a training calendar my friend Liz gave me to prep for the half marathon we're running in March.
So, I sit down and I look at what I have scheduled each week, along with what runs I have to complete and what strength/other workouts I want to get in.  I write them in on the calendar so I can plan my rest days out, and I don't end up doing my long run right after a day of really hard strength training or something.

Here's my December calendar:
I cross off each day as I complete it, and I do erase and write in what I actually did if my plans change for some reason. 
I like this method for a few reasons.  It's free (yay!), it's visual (I'm a visual learner), and it helps me make exercise a priority in my life.  Like I've said about planning my meals, planning my workouts takes a lot of the thinking out of it.  There's less chance for questioning and it makes it more automatic.
It's a simple trick that works for me!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013


It's hard to believe it's that time again - January 1st!  So, as with the past few years, it's time to choose the "word of the year".  2010 was "rollercoaster", 2011 was "renew", and 2012 was "stronger". 

A quick look back at 2012 - STRONGER was definitely the right word!  I grew stronger in all the ways I'd hoped to.  From running in races like the Urbanathlon, to finding a consistent and quality devotional time with SheReadsTruth, and continuing my health/weight loss journey - it's definitely been a year of getting stronger!

I almost didn't choose a word this year.  I thought about it and suddenly, the word popped into my head:


I'm 2/3 of the way to my goal weight, and with under 40 pounds left to lose, I'm beginning to look at the "maintenance" journey. Focus is the perfect word for 2013!

Here are my 3 FOCUS goals for the year:
1. Focus on reaching my goal weight.  Unlike any other weight goal on this journey, I've given myself a deadline with this one to help me keep my focus.  My goal?  Hit 100 pounds lost by my 32nd birthday - June 1st.

2.  Focus on race goals.  I think it will be easy to get frustrated and scale focused at this point, so while goal #1 is weight related, I'm balancing it with goal #2.  Focus on my running goals will help me keep forward momentum.

3.  Focus on God's story.  Look for what He's doing in my life and with others around me.  Notice where He's working and join His work. 

I've been pinning FOCUS related quotes on my 2013 = Focus Pinterest board.  Check it out!