Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Confessions

I have a confession… I haven’t been so good lately with my clean eating.

There were temptations lurking all around my kitchen just begging to be consumed. And I really wanted a steak… or three.

Since starting my clean eating experiment I have cheated in the following ways:

  1. I had one ginger ale per week in weeks 2, 3 and 4. Sometimes I sneak a sip of my husband’s coke.
  2. I drink beer once in a while. Like, one after my son goes to bed and only two or three times a week. And its not some gluten free, craft beer either. It’s good ol’ fashioned Lucky Lager. (Hey, I am an islander.)
  3. I sometimes skip meals and my snacks have become non existent. This has only been happening for the last week or so.
  4. I bought some steaks two weeks ago and we BBQ’d a couple of them up. They were so good I had them again the following week. No the cow wasn’t grass fed. Actually, I don’t know what the cow was eating. Probably a shit ton of hormones and chemicals.
  5. Last night I had white bread…AND IT WAS DELICIOUS!
  6. Last night I also had enough meat to last for a whole week. There were prawn skewers and chicken covered in bruschetta and thick juicy steaks! In my defence, we were at someone else’s house and you can’t turn down what your host puts in front of you, it would be rude…There was also chocolate bunt cake.
  7. I had white pasta, but you already knew that if you have been keeping up with my blog. Go to the post about Day 30 to find out why I will keep white pasta in my pantry.
  8. I drink coffee. Once a day. I need that morning jolt! I finished the artificial coffee creamer I had left in my fridge and have vowed to never buy it again.

This last week has been the hardest trying to stick with a clean eating plan because we have had family in town visiting and there was a lot of eating outside of my kitchen and only so much I could control.

Also, I think my son is teething and he’s turned into a little psycho, making my nerves a little frayed and little to no time to do elaborate meal planning. I’m surprised (and quite proud) I haven’t hit up McDonald’s yet.

Even though I am down to 127.2 lbs (from 135.6 lbs), I have been feeling a little run down lately and that just goes to show you how much our diet affects our energy stores. I’ve realized that, if I am not careful with what I choose to ingest, it doesn’t just affect me, but my son as well.

I feel like it was easier when I had the meals already planned out for me and so now I am on the hunt for a new clean eating challenge. Perhaps, when you are perusing Pintrest, you could keep an eye out for me for a new one or, if you already have one leave me the link in the comments. Thanks for reading!

 

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Day 23: Blame The Baby

They say one of the hardest thing about sticking with a diet is trying not to get bored with what you are eating, so today I decided to try something new for breakfast – whole wheat, oatmeal and blueberry pancakes.

Would I eat then again? Well, I have to since I made a full batch and still have about three more pancakes sitting in my fridge and I don’t want to waste food. But would I make this recipe again? Probably not.

I found them very heavy and not sweet enough for me like a real pancake. I added blueberries instead of chocolate chips and did added maple syrup but it wasn’t enough to get over the heaviness. Perhaps tomorrow I will add some chocolate chips to the mix.

Another thing: Aunt Jemima is not clean eating folks! You want 100% maple syrup. Aunt Jemima doesn’t even have maple listed in its ingredients it’s just sugar. There is no need for an ingredient list on my bottle of syrup, it’s all on the label: 100% pure maple syrup. Sure it’s 3 times the price but it’s so worth it. Bonus points if it’s local!

Anyways, here are my pancakes:

20140706-200215-72135676.jpgI know not pretty.

For lunch I made mayo-less chicken salad sandwiches. The Greek yogurt adds a tangy flavor that would have otherwise been provided by mayo. I added a few spinach leaves on each sandwich for some leafy greens. The sandwiches were so good, I had two.

For dinner I thawed out the rest of my whole wheat pizza dough and sauce from Day 16.

To the sauce I added the roasted garlic that I roasted off last night. I baked the crust first to add more stability, then I topped it off with leftover chicken, roasted red peppers, caramelized onion, roasted tomatoes and asparagus and shredded mozzarella cheese.

Yes, cheese. I figured since I didn’t have plans to leave the house and no one was coming over I would have a treat. The pizza would have fell apart without it! I made sure to get a block of cheese, not those preshredded bags of cheese which have been more processed than the blocks. It would have been Better if I had a fresh ball of mozza, you know the ones that come in water or brine, but I am not rolling in the dough (pun intended) right now.

So far, so good. Just a little bit of gas, but I just blame it on my son.

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Day 22: Three Weeks Behind Me

Wow! It’s been three weeks since I’ve started this clean eating experiment and, I have to say, I look great! My waist has slimmed down (I got back into my skinniest of jeans that I wore pre-pregnancy), my skin has cleared up, and I have a lot more energy! Well, sort of.

Yesterday I was still plagued with allergies so I slept right through lunch, but I did manage to make myself breakfast of two eggs on toast with avocado. My liquids consisted of mostly tea and Neocitran. I was still exhausted when we got home for dinner so my husband barbecued up a bunch of chicken and we made sandwiches with carrot sticks and hummus. The Neocitran kicked in soon after and I had to turn in early. I am feeling a little better this morning, albeit a little hungry.

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Health, Uncategorized

Day 14: Last But Not Least

Today is be final day of the clean eating challenge. I have to say I’m feeling very thrilled, albeit a little nervous about what’s to come. It’s so easy to just give in and get that milk chocolate bar that’s 3 for $2 AND Haggen Das is on sale this week.

Anyways back to Day 14. I wasn’t even going to try and attempt an omelet today; my last attempts were laughable. I opted for a scramble instead, since it was going to end up that way anyways. I added a couple tablespoons of black beans and diced tomato to the onions and feta and only used two eggs. It turned out better than any omelet I had made in the last two weeks:

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For lunch it was mini portobello pizzas. I didn’t have any shallots but had a white onion in the fridge and thought that would be an ok substitute. Nope. They all burned when I roasted my tray of portobellos, tomatoes and onions. But the pizzas turned out just as well. In fact I would make them again.

I skipped my afternoon snack again today and substituted a glass of wine. Fruit for a vegetable, right? It has been a long two weeks. After wine we went to a friends house because another friend was in town and we hadn’t seen him in a while. We agreed on a curfew but by the time we got home and made dinner, it was 9:00pm when we sat down to eat it.

And that was that. I sat up late into the night pouring over groceries store flyers planning out my shopping trip for tomorrow. We have seven different places to get groceries plus a farmer’s market everyday of the week within a half hours drive. My brain was on over load so I went to bed without posting an entry.

I honestly feel so much better after these last two weeks. My stomach is digesting as it should and I haven’t really had any troubles pooping. (For anyone who knows me, this is quite the accomplishment). My skin is clearing up without using any harsh products on it. (During pregnancy I broke out like a teenager). I’ve dropped 6.8lbs and am siting pretty at 128.8lbs (morning weight, before breakfast). I don’t feel as energized as the BuzzFeed GIFs say I would, but I’m a new mom juggling a baby that needs to be fed every two hours, that gets angry if he’s not in a constant state of motion. (Please note: I do not literally juggle my baby). Most importantly I feel good about my decision to eat healthier and make changes that benefit my family. I can’t wait for my morning cup of coffee!

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Clean Eating, Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Day 5: My Husband Cooks Better Than I Do

Wow! I never thought I would have made it this far! Today I learned that I should leave the omelet flipping to my husband. Actually, I should leave all the cooking to my husband.

I was a little skeptical about today’s breakfast, as there was no cheese involved in the cauliflower omelet, but it turns out it didn’t need it. The cauliflower took on a really creamy texture amongst the egg and it was actually quite nice. I would have liked some bacon and hash browns alongside it but that wasn’t in the recipes.

After lunch we decided to go for a walk. The City of Nanaimo puts on this Golden Bucket challenge every summer where, each week, they hide a child’s yellow beach bucket around various parks and give clues on where to find it. The bucket has a question in it, usually pertaining to the location it is at, and you send in your answer to be entered to win prizes.My son and I have been doing this for the last two weeks.

Today brought us to a sea side nature park where you can walk a trail that runs along the ocean. The sea air did wonders on my sinuses and I felt more energized, albeit sweaty, than I have all week. Also the crashing waves and the bouncing of my steps (I had my baby in a carrier) lulled my son to sleep.

After our walk I decided that, since I was doing so well in this clean eating experiment, that I would reward myself with a glass of wine. The challenge says I can limit myself to two glasses over the two weeks. Well they didn’t say how big the glasses had to be! I had the 9oz. Red, of course.

I felt a little tipsy afterward. It wasn’t my first drink since giving birth so I was quite surprised how hard it hit me.

By the time we got home from our drinks and shopping for more diapers it was 7:00pm. I needed to cook more lentils since I used up all the left overs a few days ago. I forgot that they take an hour to cook so the salmon dinner wasn’t ready until after 8:00pm.

Since I didn’t get my first snack in after lunch, I snacked on my carrots and hummus as we prepared dinner. My husband brought home a large fillet of salmon bought locally from the marina in French Creek, BC. Caught right off our very own coast.

Not only is it clean and fresh, but sustainable as well.

We decided that we would bbq the fillet instead of baking it in the oven. It gave it such a different but tasty flavor. I would say that we had an 8oz portion of salmon and half a recipe of the big batch of lentils each. So, needless to say, dinner was filling and there was no need for an after dinner snack. Plus by that time is was 9:00pm.

Even though I drank way more than the recommended 60oz of water today, I ended up with a migraine that has been trying to rear it’s ugly head for three days now. I’m not sure if this is another one of the side effects of changing the way I eat or that maybe I was just due for a migraine. It has been a while since my last one (since before I was pregnant).

It’s now 4:15am as I am writing this and I am wide awake. But I feel great after day 5 of my clean eating experiment!

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Not today’s bucket, but an example of the Golden Bucket Challenge

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Clean Eating, Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Day 4: Really, That’s All The Snack I Get?!

If you can flip an omelet, you deserve a medal. This is what my breakfast looked like:

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The instructions said to turn the heat down to low and cook the eggs for one minute until the eggs are not very runny. Well it took me over 5 minutes on low, a lid, and one minute cranked up to medium before I could get my eggs to set. Overall the “omelet” looks like crap, as you can see, but it tastes alright. I would use less green onions next time.

Speaking of using less or more of the ingredients, I wish they would be more specific about the amounts used. For instance this recipe called for 4 scallions (green onions). Well what size are your scallions? Mine were too big.

Today’s lunch, a Greek salad using the left over lentils from last night’a dinner, calls for one red pepper and half a cucumber cut into pieces. Last I checked there is a wide variety of sized cucumbers and peppers. So my salad ended up being huge! It could have fed two people.

Oh, and about lunch: I used up all the lime vinegarette in last night’s cabbage wraps and had no more limes to make more. I thought substituting bottled lime juice would have the same effect. It didn’t.

Word of advice: DON’T USE BOTTLED LEMON OR LIME JUICE IN PLACE OF FRESH SQUEEZED. It does not taste the same and it does not taste as good as fresh squeezed. I know lemons and limes are ridiculously expensive right now but it is sooo worth it, especially in salad dressings.

I had to go grocery shopping again before dinner. Since my husband works from early mornings to later at night, the only meal I have to prepare for him is dinner. However, when I did my initial grocery shop I forgot to take into account that I have to feed my husband too! That is why I have had to hit the store almost every day so far. He is also off for the next two days so I bought more supplies to accommodate him. I will have a running total for all of you at the end of each week.

Dinner was good. I roasted up some more chicken breasts (boneless, skinless because I wasn’t wrestling with chicken on the bone again, plus, I don’t like all the waste) alongside the fennel. I threw some more cauliflower in the oven since I burnt the florets last night that I was supposed to use in tomorrow’s breakfast.

My after supper snack was a joke. If you aren’t following along with the challenge from BuzzFeed, it was two dates and two almonds. You were supposed to stuff the almonds in the dates. F*%# that. I threw a handful of dates and almonds in a bowl and snacked on that while I caught up on work.

I have to say I felt really good today. I never really felt tired or worn down. I got lots of work accomplished, both my paid work and my house work. Although, I didn’t get much exercise or get my full 60 oz of water in. I have I say, though, my tummy is looking a little round with bloat and an unfortunate side effect of the challenge is my body trying to rid itself of poison in the form of noxious gas.

Seriously. And since having gone through childbirth, it’s not as easy to hold it in when the timing isn’t right. Like at the grocery store when there is a line up behind you in the check out. It’s even passing onto my son. His poops have gotten quite explosive and foul. I’ll leave you with that.

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Clean Eating, Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Day 3: Upping the Caloric Intake

Today’s menu can be found here.

Did you know breastfeeding burns 500 calories a day, I figure that is what is leaving me exhausted by 2:00pm everyday.

Since my main goal is gaining energy and since I need to take care of my sons needs first and foremost, I am going to up my caloric intake. I am still going to use the same recipes and menu plans but I’m going to eat more, if I want to.

For example: half a cup of hummus instead of quarter, the men’s recommended portion of protein instead of the woman’s, etc. But keeping conscious of salt intake and making clean, healthy food choices.

Unfortunately that didn’t start at breakfast. I did not even have enough Greek yogurt to make up a cup that was required in the blackberry almond parfait. (I had to run to the grocery store anyways to grab some Napa cabbage and limes for today’s lunch anyways, so I got to pick up more then.)

I think the recipe had a typo, as there was way too much ground flax seed. I think it should read two teaspoons not tablespoons. Here’s what my parfait looked like:

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As a new mom I did not have time to waste to make it all layered and pretty so excuse the mess I called breakfast. It tasted pretty good but very powdery with all the flax.

For lunch I used a whole breast of chicken rather than just a half and three tablespoons of the dressing (since I never used any for dinner last night) in my salad. By the way, if you are following along and are having trouble finding Tamari, it’s next to the soya sauce.

I think that being cooped up indoors when the weather is gloomy zaps ones energy. Today was a decent day and we got out for a walk. The cool breeze and the fresh air really re-energized me and there was so need for an afternoon nap.

The lemony, avocado snack I had after the walk left little to the imagination. I suppose given a tight time frame it’s a great option as it’s just a scooped out avocado with some lemon juice and salt and pepper. Since I didn’t use the quarter of an avocado in last nights dinner I ate the whole avocado. I still felt a little hungry so I ate some carrots and hummus to tide me over until dinner (not in the menu for today but clean and healthy, none the less).

Even before my roasted cauliflower and lentils are finished cooking I’ve decided to make the Napa cabbage wraps that were supposed to be from last night in addition to tonight’s supper. I’m not planning for dinners for two and I’ve stretched my cauliflower reserves so thin as it is that the cauliflower and lentils is more of a side dish than a main meal.

I don’t think I would make it again. Even as a side. The lentils are alright but the cauliflower is not my thing. The cabbage wraps are alright as well. I was right about my mango not being ripened enough and I ate all my avocado during my afternoon snack, so they were lacking in flavour a bit. I think I would substitute romain hearts next time instead of cabbage.

I was really looking forward to my night time snack: hot chocolate made with almond milk and shaved dark chocolate! It was just ok: needed more chocolate.

I must say I am starting to feel more energized today. After finally getting my son down for the night I actually got an hour and a half of uninterrupted work done! I can’t wait to see what tomorrow will bring and I am looking forward to a hot breakfast for a change.

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