Tuesday, December 22, 2009

And the winner is .... ME!

This is what I saw when I entered my weight into the WW site this morning:


HOLLAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!! I hit my WW goal AND THEN SOME! I’m currently sitting at –71 pounds and feeling fabuloso. Six weeks in the maintenance phase and then LIFETIME MEMBER (aka noooo moooore paaaayiiiinngg). Halleluia!

www.nataliedee.com

OH! And I didn’t want to mention anything until I knew for sure, but ...

I’m gonna be a WW leader!!!

I applied, had some interviews and then got the offer. Paperwork came in the mail yesterday. YAY! I figured I should give back to the program that really jumpstarted my healthiness journey. It’ll be a while before I begin actually leading meetings, but I’m excited to embark on this new gig!

It’s funny that I hit my WW goal and received my WW job paperwork the day the meeting topic was Celebrating Successes. Mark down two huge successes for me yesterday!

But really, it’s important to celebrate even the smallest successes. Like how I passed up the goodies in the cookie-share at work the other day or how I turned down grabbing an adult bevy a couple of nights ago and opted for tea instead. Each little success adds up to HUGE accomplishment. (Not to toot my own horn or anything, but 71 pounds beep beep!)

Oddly enough, I still don’t give myself enough credit. When someone says, “Wow! You look great!” or “You’re an inspiration,” I often respond with an insincere “Thanks, but ….” I really need to work on taking in those genuine compliments and leaving it at “Thanks!” Exclamation point, dammit. I’ve worked my tail off for this!


I’m TOTALLY pumped about all I’ve accomplished …. but it’s not over. It’ll never be over. That’s not such a bad thing, though. I really do get a kick out of incorporating new healthy elements into my life. In the last year, I’ve taken up running, decreased my intake of processed, already-made meals, increased my ability to prepare healthy meals from fresh ingredients, and eliminated meat from my diet. I can only imagine what 2010 has in store for me.


That’s all, folks. I’m so jazzed about my progress I can’t even come up with more words. Wow. Who knew?

OK OK a couple more :)

Focus on the positive. Celebrate success. Cherish every moment.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hi, I'm Earth. Have we met?

Well, folks, I have some good news and some not-so-good news.

The good news is that I’m officially in the 140s!!!

The not-so-good news is that, as of last night’s weigh-in, I’m still 0.6 pounds from my next milestone and 0.8 pounds from my WW goal.

I was mildly disappointed, but whatever. I’ve lost more than 69 pounds for cryin’ out loud! I weighed this much when I was at my fittest in high school. I didn’t really weigh myself back then, so I don’t even remember the last time I was in the 140s. I’m loving it so far!!!!!!!!! I’m soooooo skinny! Haha OK not really, but I feel great :)

I do know that I weighed between 150 and 155 when I entered college a little more than six years ago … and I weigh less than that now. Gotta say, that’s pretty darn cool.

Here’s a picture of me the summer
after freshman year of college
(about 5½ years ago).


And here’s a picture of me from earlier this month.


Aside from the differences in hair color and crazy tan, I don’t think my face looks too different. And that’s a good thing! As I got chunkier and chunkier, I definitely noticed my increasingly plumper face. I’m finally back to normal Amanda face! YYYYAAAYYYY!!!!

I really should have been able to reach my goal last night, though. SHOULD have been able to. But I wasn’t working as hard as I should have been. I didn’t eat that well or work out at all during the week. Did I really think that tracking what I ate and working out ONLY on Saturday and Sunday would undo my lackadaisical week?? Please. I was obviously living in Fantasyland.

I’m back in the real world now and I’m ready for a superb week. The goals I made for myself yesterday are not difficult, and I’m actually looking forward to a regular workout schedule, a nighttime routine and daily food/drink tracking. Holllaaaaaaaaaaaa. Let’s do this.

Oh my gosh. I can’t believe I haven’t posted my Spicy Sweet Potato Chips recipe yet. I made them for Thanksgiving … and now it’s time for sharing.

Spicy Sweet Potato Chips

2 large sweet potatoes, scrubbed well
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1-2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
½ tsp salt

Directions: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Slice the sweet potatoes into rounds as thin as you can get them. Place the sweet potatoes in a bowl and add oil, pepper flakes and salt. Toss until the potatoes are well coated. Spread the rounds on a baking sheet (no overlapping) and bake until they are browned, crispy chips, about 20 minutes.

I used beige sweet potatoes when I made these for Thanksgiving, and, unlike my Brussels sprouts, they were a hit with everyone! Next time I make them, however, I’m going to change a lot of things.

First, I’ll use FOUR large sweet potatoes because there were just not enough noms to go around. Maybe I’ll try orange sweet potatoes next time, just for funsies.

Second, although I’ll have twice as many potatoes, I’ll still use ¼ cup of oil. There was just too much oil on these babies last time, which makes getting crispy chips very difficult. I’ll also try drying the potato slices thoroughly with paper towel before tossing with the other stuff.

Third, I’ll add more red pepper flakes and probably more salt. The sweet, spicy, and salty make a major party on your tongue.

Last, I’ll bake the chips for 20 minutes on one side, flip them all, and bake for another 20 minutes. I’ve found that it’s pretty difficult to bake sweet potatoes and get them crispy. And you should take my experienced word for it, considering I’ve made sweet potato fries once and sweet potato chips once ;)

Peace to you all, my lovelies!

PS This is my 50th post. Neat :)

Monday, December 14, 2009

I’ve got a feeling.

Greetings, Earthlings! Tonight’s the night. I’m supernervous for my weigh-in. And excited, of course. But more nervous. I’m sooooo close to hitting another milestone and reaching my WW goal.

If I don’t gain any weight during the day (water/food that doesn’t leave before 5:30 ...), I’ll hit both of these targets. If I only gain a little, I should at least be able to hit my next five-pound milestone. (That’s 70 pounds lost, if you’ve been keeping track!)

What am I even talking about? My next milestone weight (149.2) and my WW goal weight (149) are basically the same number.

I REALLY WANT THIS!

I clocked 65ish treadmill minutes on Saturday and 42 minutes yesterday. Both days I walked uphill most of the time and threw a couple of 10-minute runs in the mix. I even did abs and some pushups on Saturday. I mean business, people!

Weekends tend to be my downfall when it comes to food and drink, but I was very mindful of my meals Saturday and Sunday. I tracked everything that went in my mouth and stayed within my daily POINTS and everything! I admit, I rarely track anymore, but I really need to get serious about it again if I want to ditch these final 10 pounds and reach my personal goal weight.

As I’m writing this I’ve discovered some things:
  1. I shouldn’t be THAT jazzed about working out Saturday and Sunday. That should be automatic by now. It hasn’t been, but I’m gonna work on it now. GOAL: I will hit the gym at least three or four days a week.

  2. Big whoop that I did abs and pushups ONE day. I used to do that every night when I was a senior in high school. It takes, what, like 10 minutes? I’ll just look up the trusty ol’ 8-Minute Abs video on YouTube (LOVE the cheesy music and even cheesier enthusiasm. Come on, gang!) and do some pushups after those glorious eight minutes. (Still girly pushups for now. Baby steps.) GOAL: I will do abs and pushups before bed every night.

  3. Yay me for tracking two days in a row. Let’s turn this into every day, shall we? I NEED TO TRACK WHAT I’M EATING. Every day. Starting now. GOAL: I will track every day, dangit!

Alright. Goals set. Nervousness out there for the world and less on my shoulders. Wish me luck, friends!

Think thin!

Monday, December 7, 2009

smile today.

Happy Monday, kiddos :) Whether you like it or not:
I had a fun and FULL weekend — two birthday get-togethers! You know what that means? Drinkies. And you know what THAT means?? Empty cals and extra poundage. Boo that. BUT total funtimes, nonetheless, and staying up later than usual equals more cals burned, right?? I’m going with yes.


I tried to be extra good during the week so that the weekend’s events wouldn’t have too bad of an effect on my waistline … and I think it worked.

I even spent more than an hour on the treadmill yesterday! (I burned about 550 calories, a-thank you very much.) My workouts have been so sporadic lately, and it felt good to sweat and move my bod. I was only planning on being on the treadmill (alternating walking at a high incline and running at 3.0 incline) for an hour, but The Holiday was on TV, so I just kept walking for awhile until it got to my favorite part. Haha you wouldn’t think that movie would be a go-get-’em workout flick, but evidently it was yesterday.


As usual, I’ll weigh in tonight at my meeting, so we’ll see if last week’s smart eating and last night’s workout paid off. I know for sure I’ve lost weight since last week, but that’s because last week was a gain week. I’m thisclose to hitting my WW goal — I’m talking like 2 pounds away — and I REALLY thought I could hit it this week. Prob not gonna happen. Next week, I tell you!

Like I said, I’m about 2 pounds from my WW goal, which is 10 pounds more than my real-life goal of 139. Now that I’m getting closer and closer to these SUPERCOOL milestones, I’m so excited! However, the weight just does not come off like it used to. Not at all, actually.

I need to buckle down and actually put in some hard work. Maybe another 5K in the nearish future? (Liz: If you’re reading this, how ’bout it??) I know FOR SURE that I need to get back to working out at least 3 days a week. And I’ve already gotten in one day this week! Off to a great start!!

And now for the Lemon-Marinated Brussels Sprouts recipe I’ve promised since Thanksgiving :) (I forgot to take pictures (for shame), but my finished product looked similar to this picture of Brussels Sprouts with Lemon-Mustard Sauce from FatFree Vegan Kitchen.)


Lemon-Marinated Brussels Sprouts

1 ½ pounds Brussels sprouts

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

1 tsp minced garlic

½ tsp sugar

½ tsp dried oregano

salt and pepper to taste

1 tsp grated lemon zest

3 Tbsp lemon juice

1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

Trim Brussels sprouts; cut larger ones in half. Cook in boiling water until barely tender (5-6 minutes). Plunge into ice water then drain well. Combine remaining ingredients — except lemon juice and apple cider vinegar — in a medium bowl. Toss in the Brussels sprouts and let them marinate in this mixture 1-2 hours at room temperature (or longer in the refrigerator), tossing occasionally. Just before serving, mix in the lemon juice and apple cider vinegar. Adjust any of the seasonings to taste.

I served mine as a side dish, but you could also eat them with toothpicks as more of an appetizer or throw some in a salad.

They turned out really well! And they taste so fresh and lemony! I thought they’d be a hit on Thanksgiving, and I was really pumped to contribute something to the meal; however, I misjudged my audience. Most of the eaters were not looking to fill valuable plate space with vegetables, and, if they were, it would be the familiar stuff like corn or raw carrots. A couple of people said they really liked them, another couple thought they were gross, but most didn’t even try them.


I’ll admit my feelings were a bit hurt. I couldn’t care less if someone doesn’t like a particular food. Everyone’s tastes are different, after all. But to not even try something? Not even one measly sprout? But, like I said, I misjudged my audience. Better luck next time!

On a happy note, my Spicy Sweet Potato Chips were a hit that day, and I’ll share that supersimple recipe later this week :)

Focus on the positive. Peace.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Songs and Subs

Hello, friends! I hope y’all had a fab holiday weekend. That is unless you don’t live in the United States … then I hope you had a fab normal weekend! I spent some QT with fam and friends, but the time breezed by and I didn’t even get to do all the stuff and see all the peeps I intended. Christmas vacay isn’t too far away, so I’m hoping to make up for what I missed then.

Something that DID happen was that I found out that a bunch of my hometown friends (Holla, Onalaskans!!!) read my blog! Many a convo downtown began like this: “I know this is kinda weird ... but I totally read your blog!” Some of these folks are better friends than others. Some I might see once a year or less. No matter the relation, I’m glad that I can amuse/inspire/interest you :) You make me smile, too.

Pictures and recipes from Thanksgiving weekend will come later this week. Stay tuned!

I bought Adam Lambert’s CD last week and you know what I thought right after I popped it in? These will be great workout songs! That was new concept for me. Usually I would think something more like, “Hey, this is great happy-fun music!” Which it very much is.

This event surprised me, but it makes sense that my brain’s way of relating things have changed along with my healthier lifestyle. I don’t think about food just as stuff to shove in my mouth, but as fuel and nutrition. I don’t think about exercise as a nuisance, but as something that makes me feel good during and after. And apparently I think of upbeat songs as potential workout jams!

But anyway, back to Adam. You should really check out this album. This guy can sing!!!! I’ve loved him from the time I watched his American Idol audition aaaaaall the way through the season.

My absolute favorite song on the album is Music Again. My second favorite: For Your Entertainment. Third fav: Whataya Want From Me. (I could do without the stupid spelling of the third one, however.) But who am I kidding? I love the whole thing. You NEED to check him out if you want some superb workout or funtimes songs.

(Ummm, I didn’t even realize what’s happening right now. I’m watching this morning’s episode of the Ellen DeGeneres Show … and watching Adam Lambert’s performance. I was totally writing about his wonderfulness before he came on. Weird.)


Now onto something else I love: SANDWICHES! More precisely, subs. I’ve written before about how I get a footlong Subway sandy after pretty much every Monday evening WW meeting. Today, I’m gonna compare Jimmy John’s sub options based on the Nutritional Information on their website. The lessons learned should work across the board, though, as far as sandwich ingredients go.

I order the Vegetarian. #6, baby.


Here are the facts for the Veg sub as it’s prepared per the menu:


And after you subtract the cheese and mayo:


The Jimmy John’s Vegetarian sub just went from 14 POINTS to 5 POINTS in a hurry! Wanna keep the cheese? 8 POINTS. I prefer mine sans cheese and mayo, but I add onions and extra alfalfa sprouts.

When I used to eat meat, I ordered the Turkey Tom.

Here are the facts if you order it straight up:


Minus the mayo:

Soooo you can have your 14-POINT Turkey Tom for 6 POINTS just by taking off the mayo! Worth it.

The only other thing I ordered at JJ’s back in the day was the Totally Tuna. The mayo’s already in the tuna mix, and cheese isn’t included with this sub, so I couldn’t take it off.

Here’s the bad news:



That’s 15 POINTS! I only get 22 (aaaalmost 21) POINTS per day, so using 15 all at once — when I probably would get a high-POINTS bag of chips on the side — is just not gonna happen.

Moral of the story: Ditch the mayo. If you really want the cheese, keep it, but I suggest nixing that, too. It doesn’t really add THAT much flavor. If it’s flavor you’re looking for, add onions (like I do) or any of your favorite veggies. Yay veggies!!! Also, opt for a yummy huge pickle (a mere 22 cals) rather than the BBQ chips (320 cals/bag — yikes!) or cookie (420 cals — double yikes!).

Hope some of my tips helped! Peace and love, lovelies :)

(My apologies for the abrupt signoff; True Lies is on and I forgot how great it is!)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

All Quiet on the Midwestern Front

While I was training for my first 5K a few months ago, I really enjoyed getting up in the morning to run. If I had a stressful day, I’d throw on my workout clothes and go for a run. It soothed me. Back then.

I’d like to say that my workouts remained a steady pattern after the race, but that didn’t really happen. Sadly, I’ve only worked out a handful of times in the past month and a half. Bad Amanda! Maybe that had something to do with my sticking at 153-154 for the past few months. Hmm who woulda thunk? Duh.


I knew what I was doing (or rather, what I wasn’t doing) was not good. I got busy. My life’s events ran away from me, and I wasn’t running (literally) with them. In the past month and a half, I’ve been out of town four of the weekends. I wasn’t fitting in workouts while I was out of town, and when I’d be back in St Paul, I was focused on work during the week and social gatherings on the weekends. I just DID NOT want to work out during my free moments. I wanted to sit, lay, read, R-E-L-A-X.

Not exercising for a few days turned into a few more days then a few weeks, and I fell off the workout wagon. I’m now realizing how poor of a decision that was.

A regular workout routine would have been one of the only constants in my busy-bee life. That, in itself, might have alleviated some stress. The endorphins produced during my workouts would have made me happy. The positive results I would have seen in my body would have made me ecstatic!

Now that I’ve come to this realization, I will jump back on the wagon. Actually, I already have!

http://www.nataliedee.com/

No, not that wagon.

This morning, after waking up too early for a Sunday and watching last night’s Saturday Night Live, I put on my exercise gear and headed outside. I did my warmup walk then broke into a jog. Then, the dreaded thing happened.

MY IPOD BATTERY DIED!!!!!!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

I was only 5ish minutes from home. I could have gone back. How can I run without tunes?!?! But NO. I stayed strong. I decided today is the day I will enjoy the nature around me. Today is the day I will use my workout time — my ME time — to think.

I took a couple of laps around the lake, and then, as I was on my route home, I decided to take a detour. A detour that would make my route LONGER. I wound up walking more than running, but I really didn’t care. I like walking, and it made focusing on the scenery and my thoughts more enjoyable.

The last half of my route was kind of depressing, actually. Is it weird that I even found THAT enjoyable? I’m generally a happy-go-lucky person, but every so often I like to wallow. I’m a weirdo. I was thinking about how my apartment’s getting too small for me and the kitties, how boys are stupid and I’m probably going to be single forever, how I don’t know what to get anybody for Christmas, how I just KNOW that I’ll gain weight over Thanksgiving weekend, how I had lost weight this past week only to RUIN IT ALL last night at Emily and Roland’s housewarming party. Oh thinking. This is where it gets me.

At one point I actually felt myself walking hunched over like a sad Charlie Brown. Or even better, a sad George Michael Bluth.

(I love Arrested Development. LOVE it.)

Anyway, I got home, stretched and checked out my distance on MapMyRun.com. 5.65 miles … sans iPod! Pretty big deal for me considering I rely on my tunes to keep me goin. Turns out I don’t need ’em! Buuuuut in the future I’d much rather jam to my happy tunes than swim in my sadness. Just sayin’.

On the bright side, now that that’s over, I’m happy as a clam :) This weekend I get to hang with my family and friends that I rarely see! Woot! I’m also contributing two dishes to Thanksgiving dinner this year. It’ll be my first time making anything for it, and I’m kinda pumped. I will make Lemon-Marinated Brussels Sprouts and Sweet Potato Chips. I’ll be sure to take some pics and post them with the recipes within a week or so of Thanksgiving.

Speaking of recipes, you should really check out the e-cookbook PriorFatGirl Jen compiled. My Black Bean Chili recipe is in there along with more than 50 recipes for various tasty eats. Each recipe contains the nutrition facts, which I LOVE because that’s the first thing I look for when paging through cookbooks. More often than not, there are no nutrition facts and I put down the book and find another one that does. And this cookbook has ’em!!!

It’s only $5, and $4 of each payment goes to a great cause: YMCA Activate America. Very very cool. Check out the PriorFatGirl E-Cookbook 2009 if you know what’s good for you ;)

Wow. This got long. Peace, I’m out.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I put my thing down, flip it and reverse it

Something pretty cool happened this morning. I stepped on the scale, and what did I see? 149.8. First time in the 140s since high school (!), I think. I was sticking around 153 for a couple of months, but now I’m finally goin’ down again. YIPPIE!!!!!!!!!

And now for the rewindyness I promised :)

I was visiting Morgan in Iowa on October 31. We woke up that morning and headed to Target for our Halloween costumes. After we got what we needed there and the party store, we drove back to Morgan’s and were in our newly purchased outfits by 1:30 pm. We sang and recorded songs all afternoon. We’re cool like that. (The songs included, but were not limited to, “Like a Prayer” by Madonna, “I Could Not Ask for More” by Edwin McCain, and “Alone” by Heart. We sure know how to rock.)

Here’s a taste … keep reading to see the whole ensemble ;)

After singing our hearts out for hours, we hit the kitchen and made a fab dinner. Here’s a pic of the entrĂ©e … and the recipeeeee!

Penne with Spinach,
Tomatoes and Feta Cheese

12 oz whole-wheat penne
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 package grape tomatoes
½ cup water
6 cups stemmed fresh spinach
1 Tbsp dried basil leaves
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
½ cup crumbled feta cheese
Salt and pepper

  1. Prepare the pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside.
  2. Cut the tomatoes in half or in quarters and remove the insides.
  3. In a large, nonstick skillet, heat oil then add garlic, water, tomatoes, spinach, vinegar, basil, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until spinach is just wilted (about 5 minutes).
  4. Stir in feta and pasta, heating until cheese begins to melt.

Makes 4-6 servings, about 322 calories per serving (That's what it said in the cookbook. Probably basing it on six servings?)

Yum yum yum yum yum. I’m salivating just thinking about it. It tastes like something straight from Noodles & Company … only better because we made it.

We also made a fruit parfait for dessert!


We couldn’t find the parfait dish I got Morgan and Mike for their wedding, so we just made it in the top of the angel food cake container. We layered ripped-up pieces of angel food cake, fruit (strawberries, bananas, kiwi fruit and blackberries) and fat-free Cool Whip. Then more cake, fruit and Cool Whip. Then cake and fruit. Voila! It’s even better after it’s had a chance to set. The fruit juices soak into the angel food cake and create ambrosia. (Thank you, Grandma, for that gem in my vocabulary.) This dessert is pretty guilt-free and tastes soooooo good. Try it :)

After dinner, Morgan and I put on the accessories to our Halloween costumes and showed Mike what he was about to wear for the rest of the evening. He wasn’t too jazzed right away, but I know he secretly loved it.

And now for the reveal …

We were bedbugs!Get it!? Like, bugs ... in pajamas ... bedbugs!
Cute little antennae and everything.
(We’re showing off our pajama-covered feet, if you’re wondering.)

Mike might win Husband of the Year for this.
What a good sport!


We headed to the bowling alley for a game and some drinks. Let me tell you, fleece onesie pajamas are superduper comfy! The only problem was that these are Girls XL, and apparently the designers weren’t expecting a 5’6” child.

I had a permawedgie.


After bowling the worst game of my life (those wings were huge and threw off my balance!), we went to a little bar and found an amazing surprise. KARAOKE! Good thing Morgan and I had been practicing all day, right??

So into it. Eyes closed and everything.


Of all the people in the bar (MAYBE 15 total), there were four in costume. Us and one other woman. But we weren’t ashamed! Although the townies probably thought we were a questionable bunch when we first walked in, we soon became the life of the party. We spent the rest of the night singing, dancing, drinking and laughing up a storm. The DJ even let us close out the night!


We really brought the house down :)

Last pic of the night. We rock!

Looking back, that night was definitely one for the books. We have THE MOST fun together! But that onesie made it an even bigger deal for me.


For one, Morgan weighs like 25 pounds less than I do, but we wore the same size. And from the childrens’ department for crying out loud!!!! It was tighter on me, but the fact that I basically wore a fleece bodysuit is a banner occasion! I never would have done that a year ago. Heck, I wouldn’t have felt comfortable doing it even a few months ago. We hung out in our little onesies aaaaaaall day, and I felt on top of the world. Who knew footie pajamas could mean so much? :)

As a closing image, I’ll leave you with this, a surprising sight for me:


My butt

Obviously I know I have a butt, BUT this was an eye-opener. Even with a wedgie, it’s not lookin’ too shabby if I do say so myself! Cheers!


Monday, November 16, 2009

Relax ... and eat

Alright, so I’m finally back in the blogosphere. I have been busy busy busy at work (where I’m on a computer all day), so the LAST thing I’ve been wanting to do when I get home is even open my laptop … let alone sit in front of it for a couple of hours and gab about my silly life. But here I am. Back from hiatus and ready to do this thing!

I just finished eating my usual Monday night footlong sub. More often than not, I swing by Subway after my Monday night Weight Watchers meeting and order the same ol’ thing: Italian herbs and cheese bread, no cheese, not toasted, lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, pickles, green peppers, onions, black olives and chipotle southwest sauce. AAAANNNDD I grab a bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos :)



Sounds like a lot of food, right? Well, it kinda is, but not really. A six-inch all-veggie sub just won’t do it for me! Another reason I don’t have a prob eating this meal is because I don’t eat much after breakfast on Mondays. I don’t want a false weight reading! I’m definitely not starving myself; I know better than that. I eat breakfast and then I’ll snack on some veggies early on in the day, but I don’t eat too much after noonish. I drink my usual 2 liters of water during the day, but I make sure I’m finished drinking by 2:30.

You might do something similar on your weigh-in days, too, or you might think I’m crazy. Whatever the case, this is what I do and it works for me. All other days of the week are much more normal: breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks.


I actually didn’t feel well this morning, and I stayed home from work. After hopping out of bed, showering and THEN realizing I felt lightheaded and pukey (lame), I ate a banana and headed back to bed. After a little while, I got up to fix myself a real breakfast. I’m a big believer in that YOU STILL NEED TO EAT IF YOU DON’T FEEL WELL. I hate hearing when people are sick and they don’t even try to eat. Those are also the people who probably take a lot longer to get healthy. Just sayin'.

So anyway, I toasted two Kashi waffles and topped them with banana slices (yeah … another banana … I love them, duh) and sugar-free syrup.

Yummy yummy so so good.


This weird sicky feeling I had this morning totally hit me from out of the blue. You know how I’ve been busy busy busy? Could be my body’s way of telling me to take a chill pill and Frankie’s way of telling me to relax. (I am such a weirdo. Why did I need to throw Frankie into it? Now I’ve got that song and a Zoolander montage running through my head.)

After eating that first banana, waiting a bit and eating the waffle breakfast, and making sure to drink plenty of water, I felt great by late afternoon! I even made it to my WW meeting (btw I’ve lost a total of 68.2 lbs what what!) because I figured it was time to get out of the apartment. Afterward, I stopped for the sub sandy and we’re back to where we began. This post is like a wheel. Full circle, my friends. You’re welcome.

This is it for now, but since I hadn’t really updated y’all since before Halloween (yikes!), I’ve got some rewindy (totally a word) posts coming up. You’ll get to see my costume and the great meal Morgan and I made … including a recipe! Hey-o! Also, I’m gonna be talking about what happens to my eating and workouts when I’m stressed and busy. I’m sure a lot of you can relate, so stay tuned :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

I'm alive. Promise.

Hey, readers who haven't given up on me yet! I haven't posted recently because A) I've been superbusy and B) sometimes my life's happenings aren't that blogworthy. I just wanted to pop in to say that I'm alive, I haven't quit this blog business, aaaaaand that I'll be busy the next couple of days, too. There WILL be a post later this week. For realz.

For now, I'll leave you with this Lolcat :)


Man do I wish I was in a pool and/or lying by a pool and/or enjoying pool weather right now. But I'm too much of a busy bee!!! And I'm in Minnesota. Peace, lovlies!




Thursday, October 29, 2009

Guac Rocks

Until recently, I had never made totally-from-scratch guacamole! But I have now. It was A-MA-ZING. And today’s your lucky day because here’s the recipe for this tasty masterpiece!


3 Haas avocados
1 lime, juiced
½ red onion, diced
8ish cherry tomatoes, seeded and pulp removed, diced
1-2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp coarse salt
A few quick dashes of vegan Worcestershire sauce*

  1. Cut each avocado in half, remove the seed, scoop out the pulp and put in a mixing bowl. Squeeze the lime juice over the avocado pulp and mash with a fork (or a potato masher like I did).
  2. Mash in the cumin and salt, then fold in the onion, tomato, cilantro and garlic.
  3. Stir in a few quick dashes of Worcestershire sauce. (This is the secret ingredient that REALLY makes this guac special!)
  4. Refrigerate for a half hour or so, then serve soon after with tortilla chips (or whatever you want, for that matter).

*I use vegan Worcestershire sauce (like Annie’s Naturals Organic Worcestershire Sauce) because most traditional-recipe Worcestershire sauces contain anchovies … aka not vegetarian.

I know there are a bunch of ingredients, but it’s SOOOOO easy to make. I’m not sure this recipe has been perfected yet, so I’m open to your suggestions. Don’t get me wrong, it rocks. I brought it to a gathering of friends and it didn’t last long. I prefer to eat my guac with blue corn tortilla chips with flax seed or Mission tortilla strips. YUM!

I’m gonna keep this post short and sweet, but before I go you need to know about a cool giveaway Prior Fat Girl Jen is having. You could win a sample pack of Kay’s Naturals products! It all looks pretty good — and good FOR you — so head on over to Jen’s blog and enter!

I’m going to visit my best friend Morgan this weekend, and I’m hoping we make some fab semi-healthy vegetarian meals like we did when I visited in January. We’ve both been veggies for nine months and a few days, and it’s going splendidly! We’re gonna close out Vegetarian Awareness Month with a bang!!!

Peace out, friends!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

CANDY BAR!

According to my daily Hungry Girl email, it’s National Chocolate Day! (If you don’t already subscribe to this gem, do so HERE. If you wanna check out what she’s all about first, go HERE. Then subscribe :) You won’t be disappointed.)

This is for all you chocoholic bloggers out there.

I will be celebrating with a little Hershey’s milk chocolate, although I’m not a huge sweets person. I’m much more into the salty stuff. Chips and salsa, cheddar cheese Quakes, chips and guac, Cheez-Its, my mom’s Chex Mix, cheese and crackers, and did I mention chips with some sort of dip? From the looks of it, I also like cheesy things. Surprise! I’m from Wisconsin!!!

Anyway, back to the issue at hand: chocolate! I don’t usually purchase chocolate (or any candy, for that matter), but Halloween-time presents an entirely different world than I’m accustomed. Coworkers have candy dishes on their desks: DANGER DANGER! I can’t help myself!

Here’s a scenario that hasn’t yet happened, but I’m dreading its inevitability. First I’ll take a Laffy Taffy. (They’re one of my favs because of the so-bad-they’re-good jokes on the wrapper.) Then I’ll grab a Starburst. These nonchocolatey treats are my gateway drug. I prefer them over chocolate, but while I’m digging for them I’ll see a Snickers — my nemesis. Once I eat a Snickers, I’m doomed. Then it’s on to a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup and a Butterfinger. But they’re all “fun-sized” so it's totally OK, right?? Wrong answer.

Like I said, a major candy binge hasn’t happened yet, but I’ve already had a couple of miniepisodes. One Laffy Taffy and two Starbursts yesterday, and one Laffy Taffy and small Hershey’s bar today (only in celebration, of course). This isn’t great, but it’s definitely not horrible. Where I think it could get out of control is at my parents’ house. You see, I’m visiting them the weekend after Halloween, and you know what that means? Leftover candy.


Dear Mom and Dad:

I know you read my blogtacular sporadically, but if there’s ever a time for you to be reading, this is it. Please understand my sincerity when I write this: HIDE THE CANDY BEFORE I WALK IN THE DOOR!

I’m of sound mind and body right now, but you know how my healthy-eating habits go out the window once I get to your house. I will not be thinking clearly if I see your tasty goodies on the kitchen counter and in the candy jar on the end table in the living room.

So, if you could be so kind, hide the treats until after I leave.

Love love love,
Your little Amandarin

P.S. I’m serious. And don’t believe me when I tell you it’s OK to give me just one little Snickers. I’ll turn into a crazy candy-eating monster! You’ve been warned.


Since I’ve envisioned these detrimental situations, I’m hoping I can avoid or at least be prepared for them. That way, I can have a piece or two of candy and walk away knowing that what I’ve done really won’t affect my waistline — but if I don’t stop there I’ll be taking away some of my hard-earned weightloss success. Let’s keep it under control!

My WW leader Renee says, “We crave what we eat.” I totally believe this. If I don’t have my morning banana, I crave a piece of fruit until I get it. If I’m eating a lot of veggies and suddenly don’t get my fill one day, I crave a huge salad. This totally works in your favor when you’re eating healthfully; however, it backfires when you slip off track. For instance, after eating a Chipotle veggie burrito bowl Monday night and a cheese quesadilla and tons of popcorn for lunch yesterday, I came home from work and just wanted a junky supper. I’ve gotten back on the healthy-eating train today by eating some Kashi Honey-Toasted Oat Heart to Heart cereal (love it!) and an apple for breakfast and a salad and cottage cheese for lunch. For supper I’ll heat up the rest of the black bean chili I made last week. Back on track! Phew. That coulda gotten ugly in no time.

So, since it’s National Chocolate Day and nearing All Hallows’ Eve, and I know there are a lot of chocoholics and sweet tooths (sweet teeth?) out there, I’ll leave you with a tip:

When you eat a piece of candy,
leave the wrapper on your desk or other visible area.
It’s easy to forget each and every treat you’ve consumed
after you’ve disposed of the evidence …
but not when all the wrappers are lying out, staring back at you.


I almost forgot! The winner of two years’ worth of Shape is Missy @ Missy Maintains!

Email me your info and I'll get that rollin' for ya!

Peace, friends :)

P.S. The title of this post is a reference to Super Troopers. If you knew that, you're cool.