NSV + What I Ate Wednesday

I had another NSV yesterday! 2 for 1! Yesterday in my Body Sculpt class, our instructor split us in to two groups, and he totally put me in the “no modifications” group. I was picked as one of the “fit” kids! That never happens to me!

I’ve really come to love this class. The first week, I thought I was going to die and really was not sold on the instructor, but he’s grown on me and I find myself really looking forward to it. I’m going to miss it when it’s over! I’m still sore every week, but it’s the kind of sore that makes me feel strong. Are you strength training yet?!

Anyway, on to What I Ate Wednesday!

 1) Creamy Dijon Chicken

It’s happened, guys. I’ve got my first flop. This was only “meh”. I baked this in the oven over baby yukon gold potatoes instead of making it on the stove. The chicken was pretty good, but the sauce is pretty bland. I won’t be making this recipe again. Pro-tip: when you bake chicken in the oven, put it under the broiler for the last 10 minutes. Gives it a grilled taste!

 

 2) Tomato and White Bean Soup

This was loosely based off of this recipe, but it’s different enough that I’ll spell it out for you here. It’s super quick and easy! This soup is one that gets better the next day. The starch from the pasta and the beans thicken it as it cools, giving it an almost creamy consistency It’s. So. Good! This is actually the second time I’ve made this yummy soup this month.

Ingredients:
2 cups small shape pasta (uncooked)
1 cup white wine
1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
1 can diced tomato (with basil if you can find it)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
1 Tbsp tomato paste
2 pinches red pepper flakes
1 can white beans, drained but not rinsed
2 large handfulls of torn baby spinach
Dried or fresh basil to taste

Makes 3-4 servings.

Directions:

While the pasta cooks, in a medium stock pot, combine wine, vinegar, tomatoes and bring to a boil. Turn down to medium heat and let simmer for 10 minutes.

When the pasta is cooked (I like to reduce the cooking time by one minute or so since it will continue to simmer in the soup) add it and the remaining ingredients to the pot. Simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes.

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NSV + Quick Tip Tuesday

I’m wearing my favorite skirt today! The one that prompted this post and that I was super bummed I couldn’t fit into anymore.

This morning, I was about to slip into a dress when I thought “what the heck, it’s been months since I put this skirt on” and to my surprise it zipped with ease! I would not recommend trying on clothes on a morning when you’re already running late, by the way. I think I put on every belt I own this morning, and finally decided just to go without.

I’ve probably mentioned before that while weight loss is awesome, I see the biggest loss of inches when I’m doing consistent strength training. I am totally intimidated by the weight machines at my gym, but I’ve found that I’ve been able to see results just from what I can do on my own.

Quick Tip of the Week

Try to incorporate some kind of strength training into your routine every day.

It doesn’t have to take you a long time, and you don’t need any equipment! Here is an example of a “Commercial Break” workout that you can easily complete while catching up on your favorite tv shows!

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Move it Monday!

So…I kind of failed in the “move it” department this weekend. I’m not sure if it’s the awesome weather we’ve been having or just my New Year motivation fading, but I’ve been feeling a little…blah.

Capture

I didn’t do strength training on Thursday thinking that I could do it after my run on Friday instead. But then I ended up spending Friday evening with a friend instead. Don’t get me wrong – I’m glad I did! I hadn’t seen her since before the holidays, and we had a great time eating pizza, drinking wine, playing cards and catching up.

I’m not exactly sure what happened this weekend. I should have gone to the gym Saturday or Sunday and I just didn’t. I also neglected Saturday’s strength training. Tsk tsk. Needless to say, I did not make my 1000 calorie burn this week, and I certainly didn’t make it up to 1200 calories.

Oh well. This is a new week, and a new chance to start all over. I’m just going to have to buck up and get my butt to the gym!

 How do you motivate yourself to get moving when you just don’t want to?

 

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5 Ways to Jazz Up Boneless-Skinless Chicken Breast

I just had the most boring dinner ever, and one that most “dieters” are probably familiar with – baked boneless-skinless chicken breast (with bbq sauce, thank goodness!) and a salad. Blah blah blah! No wonder people get thrown off track so quickly if they think this is how they have to eat every day. I may have been in a pinch, but that’s no excuse!

Here are 5 things I should have done with my chicken breast that would have made it much more enjoyable.

1. Freeze fresh chicken breasts in individual bags with a few tablespoons of your favorite salad dressing. The chicken will marinate as it freezes and thaws. Way better than plain chicken! Great to slice and serve over salad.

2. Dice the chicken and mix with 1 tablespoon of light mayo and a squirt of mustard to make a quick chicken salad. Add some diced celery and onion if you have it! Curry powder and raisins are also an excellent edition. Eat on a piece of toast, on top of a salad or on its own.

3. Slice chicken and roll up in 2 taco-sized tortillas with salsa and some shredded cheese.

4. Slice chicken and toss with some bottled teriyaki sauce. Serve over rice (boil in a bag rice is a godsend!) and some mixed veggies.

5. Brush the chicken breast with lemon juice or dijon mustard, then roll in seasoned breadcrumbs. Bake as usual.

Even in a pinch, there’s no reason to eat a bland, plain-ole chicken breast again!  What are some of your favorite ways to cook a chicken breast when you’re in a pinch?

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Super Scale Sunday!

Isn’t weight loss funny? I weight myself every day, and it never ceases to amaze me how the scale can read the same thing 6 days in a row, and then on the 7th…a pound is magically gone!

I still use an old-fashioned analog scale instead of a digital one. I like the fact that I can’t get bogged down by a silly 10th of a pound. Sometimes, I do wish I could squeeze a little more detail out of my tired old scale. The last few days I’ve been getting on my scale thinking “does that say 164?….nope. Still 165”. Womp womp.

But this morning, my patience paid off! My scale definitely read 163.  I know there will be weeks when the scale doesn’t feel so super, but this week, I’ll take it!

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I’ve Got the Urge!

..to shop! I really don’t know what it is. It could be all the stores getting out their spring collections (WAY too early, btw. Winter is just getting started here in Michigan) or it could be my coworker who just left for Florida urging us to look out for swimsuits for her over the last few weeks, but I am just itching to buy some new clothes.

To help fight the urge, effective today, I have put an indefinite freeze on the purchase of new clothes until I need a smaller size.  At the rate I’m going, I feel like it might be next winter before I get there! Ok, ok, not really, but it does seem to be crawling by! Based on my past experience with weight loss, it takes losing about 10 lbs for me to go down a pants size. Between losing, gaining over the holidays and re-losing, I have effectively lost ONE measly pound since December 8th. That’s almost 2 months! I should be almost in needing-new-clothes mode by now!

Sigh. I know that slow and steady wins the race. I know that losing one pound a week is the healthy and responsible thing to do (and what I’ve been doing since Christmas). I know that I would not be able to realistically maintain weight loss of much more than that, but darn it, it would be nice, wouldn’t it? In the meantime, I’ll just have to turn to shoes and bags to fill my shopping desires!

How do you keep yourself motivated when it feels like you’re making progress at a snails pace?

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What I Ate Wednesday

As I’ve mentioned a time or two before, I love food. Rarely have I met a food item I haven’t liked. As such, I love when people share what they’re eating every day. Not only is it fun to see, but it also is a great way to get some new ideas!

That being said, I am a bit way behind the curve when it comes to technology. I feel like I’m the only person left on the planet that doesn’t have a SmartPhone, and have no quick and easy way of sharing my meals like so many of us do. So, while I may be sparing the world of one more “Wait! I have to take a picture first!” at the dinner table, I am feeling a little left out! You’d all probably get pretty bored of watching me eat the same thing over and over anyway (ah, the joys of cooking for one!).

Instead, I’m going to continue last weeks trend and do more of a “recipe roundup” once a week. This still gives me the opportunity to share what I’m cooking and it will make for a nice catalog of new recipes I’ve tried!

Without further ado, here are the recipes of the week!

1) Creamy Thai Sweet Potatoes and Lentils

I love lentils. And sweet potatoes. And Thai food! So I pretty much could not contain my excitement when I found this recipe. Here’s the other thing – I thought I didn’t like cooked cabbage (which you will also find it this totes delish and way healthy recipe), but I totally do! I like it so much that I’ve been looking up cabbage soup recipes ever since (if you have a good one, please share!).

To cut down a tiny bit on prep time, I used a can of tomatoes with chilies in place of the seeded and diced jalapeno and I used about 2/3 of a bag of coleslaw mix.

2) Chicken Vera Cruz

Don’t let the fact that this is a Diabetics Living recipe fool you. It is simple, tasty, AND it cooks all day in the crockpot while you’re at work. What could be better? I love the idea of my crockpot more than I tend to like the actual result of using it. Most crockpot recipes tend to end up as….mush. Sometimes, tasty mush, but mush all the same. This tasty combo of chicken and potatoes WILL keep it’s shape though, I promise! I replace one of the cans of plain diced tomatoes for one with chilies for some extra zip.  And don’t skip the olive topping. It totally makes the dish!

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