Weekly Menu Page

I’m going to add a page here where I can log our weekly meals.

Letting go of all restrictions and negative thoughts where food is concerned is something I wish I would have done a long time ago.  In the weeks that I’ve been doing this, I have dropped pounds and inches.  I have increased my max weights on all exercises.  This after months (years actually) of being very strict about what I would and wouldn’t eat but still stuck at a plateau.  I think the biggest thing is that my energy and peace of mind are awesome.  I would have argued before that my energy level was great, and it was, but it is even better now and the fact that I’m getting some amazing and restful sleep at night is an added bonus which I correlate directly to that peace of mind I mentioned above.  Stress levels are down big time, too.

I want to document my food for a couple of reasons.  First, I’m seeing awesome changes in my body, which quite honestly, at almost 40 years old, amazes me. I have been eating things that I haven’t eaten in years.  I will asterisk that comment by saying that I’m still eating what most would consider a healthy diet for the majority of my eating, but with no limitations on anything.  If I want it, I eat it.  Second, I sometimes lack the desire to sit and think about what to plan for our meals every week.  This will allow me to just look and plug something in when I’m low on imagination and time.

WATER.  Oh water.  I drink a gallon to a gallon and a half of water.  Every. Day.  And I spend most of my life peeing.  But the importance of water is huge.  And I will probably do a separate post for it, because it’s just that important.  But for now, suffice it to say that you should be drinking more water.

The other thing I wish to mention is that I’m not trying to convince anyone to do what I’m doing.  I encourage everyone to find what works for them.  I’m doing this because it works for me.  I’m doing it because I like it.  Stressing out over food is just simply something that I’m no longer willing to do at this point in my life.  If I have to do extensive research and spend tons of time trying to figure out what I can and can’t eat, I’m out.  Simple as that.  I do buy organic whenever possible and I do eat healthy foods the majority of the time.  I won’t change those things because I like those things.

If I had this to do all over again, I would still do it the way I have.  Mainly because forcing myself to eat vegetables that I never would have touched otherwise has brought me to love almost all of them.  And I am a firm believer in the power of veggies!  Had I not been so strict in the beginning of this journey, I would never have gotten to this point, which I consider to be the best place for me.  At this point in my life I am stronger than I’ve ever been and I feel better than I ever have.

So, having said all of that, I’ll soon be posting to my food log page.  :)

Another Reason to Love our Small Town Life

This is from a couple of weeks ago.  The town square all set up for the kid’s Easter egg hunt.  Why we gotta be so stinkin’ cute all the time???  I <3 our town.

Easter Egg Hunt on the Square

Easter Egg Hunt on the Square

Progress Update

So, I have started tracking my macros (fat, protein, carbs) for the last few weeks.  Basically I have a set number for each macro nutrient that I try to hit each day within 5g.  And I have to say that I think I’m going to like this.  I am still learning as I go, so I’m no expert by any means, but here is an updated progress pic comparison.  The 2 photos were taken one week apart.  The only thing that changed about my routine was that I was hitting my macro goals set for myself.  Workouts were pretty much the same.  Both pics were taken at the same time of day and immediately following my shoulder workout.  I can see definite gains. The second picture has more definition and roundness in my shoulders. But even better than that is the peace of mind that I am getting from not beating myself up over every single thing I eat.  I aim for my macros and I eat what I feel like eating.  In this time period I have also lost a pound.  Not that I care about that, because I don’t anymore, and until I started doing macros I rarely even got on the scale.  But I was curious about the effect it would have on my weight and measurements so I’m tracking those all weekly for now, just to see what it does.

Shoulders - 4/1/15

Shoulders – 4/1/15

April 23, 2015...Gains!  Small ones, but gains nonetheless!

April 8, 2015…Gains! Small ones, but gains nonetheless!  And please excuse the weirdness of my face…what the heck?

I will say that while I have definitely allowed myself a few indulgences, my eating habits have stayed mostly the same.  Still eating a ton of veggies.  And I do mean A TON, because I love them.  Still eating rice and oats.  Still eating lots of eggs/chicken.  But in the past if I indulged on something that I didn’t deem to be “clean”, I would then spiral into an internal dialogue of self-loathing that would carry on for days.  I love that I don’t have to do that to myself anymore.  I eat pretty much the same but with more freedom and zero guilt.  And I love it. I definitely feel that I had metabolic damage from years of restricting my nutrition to the point of stressing myself out and not feeding my body enough of the proper nutrients.  Working with macros has been very eye opening to me in how my body will respond to the proper amounts of each nutrient.  I will continue to update on this as I find it all very interesting and am anxious to see where this takes me.

Veggie Scramble and a Thundery Run Through the Graveyard

Yesterday I went on a jaunt through the graveyard to do my sprints.  I love going over there.  It’s so peaceful and quiet.  And on a stormy day, it makes for a nice creepy atmosphere and I love me some creepy.

Spooookaaay....

Spooookaaay….

I made it home just in time to not get completely drenched and then fixed this delicious veggie scramble for lunch.  I love pretty much all vegetables.  So weird because there was definitely a day when corn and potatoes were the only things I’d even touch.  But that was years ago and my tastes have definitely changed.  I have loads of veggies every day.

Veggie City!!!

Veggie City!!!

This is so easy to make and you can use any veggies you like.  I used an entire bag of frozen fiesta style veggies (Kroger brand).  I just sprayed my skillet and turned the heat on med/low.  Threw in the frozen veggies (because I forgot to thaw them in the fridge) and then seasoned with salt, pepper & garlic powder.  I covered my skillet with a lid and let them cook at least 10 minutes, stirring every so often.  While they were cooking, I whisked an egg with 1/3 C. egg whites.  When the veggies were done to my liking, I just poured in the egg mixture and stirred it all up and cooked it until the eggs were cooked through.  I then gave them a light sprinkle with sharp cheddar cheese and red pepper flakes.

I Could Eat Broccoli And Cauliflower Forever. Amen.

The world's BEST chicken!

The world’s BEST chicken!

This was my lunch yesterday.  And yes, that is a ton of broccoli and cauliflower.  An entire bag to be exact.  Served with my favorite chicken and some wild rice.  And I cleaned every bit of that deliciousness off my plate.

Here’s my recipe for making the most fantastic tasting chicken ever.  It is so simple too, you won’t believe how good it tastes.  I just put about a tsp of coconut oil in a skillet and heat on med heat. I season both sides of my chicken breast with Pink Himalayan Salt, garlic powder & Chipotle pepper, then cover the skillet with a lid and cook until done.  The lid is crucial because it comes out in this slightly blackened state and yet it is so juicy.  I never get tired of eating my chicken this way and the whole family loves it as well.  The Chipotle pepper definitely gives it a bite, so take it easy on that if you aren’t hot heads like us.

A Few Random Thoughts on Nutirition, Fitness & Trainers

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One of the most (if not the most) common question I get from clients/friends/family is, “How can I get rid of the fat on my {insert troublesome body part here}.”  Or, “What exercises can I do to get rid of my belly/butt/thighs/back fat?”

Well here’s the deal….you can’t spot reduce fat on your body.  You can work any area of your body and build muscle, but your approach to nutrition is what is responsible for the fat gain/loss that you have.  You can do 1000 crunches a day and build some core muscle, but if you do 1000 crunches a day and eat half a box of doughnuts for breakfast every morning you will just have some nice core muscles going on underneath that layer of fat around your middle.

There are all kinds of factors that come into play when determining whether or not you hang onto or shed fat.  If you’re eating clean most of the time (I have come to hate that term, by the way – it means different things to different people at different times in their fitness journey, but I digress) but are STRESSING YOURSELF OUT over trying to constantly stay in line with a rigid diet or if you “cheat” (another term I hate) and then proceed to sink into a pit of guilt and despair, then it is highly likely that your body is churning out some serious Cortisol (the stress hormone) and let me assure you, from experience, THAT kind of lifestyle WILL wreak havoc on your health/fitness no matter how “perfectly” you are eating.  If you can’t enjoy your food, whether it be healthy or the occasional splurge, then you are laying the groundwork for a very unhealthy relationship with food, and that will lead to frustration, depression, anxiety and sadly ZERO results for your efforts.

Let’s say your version of “eating clean” consists of eating eggs, lean meats, healthy fats and carbs, grains & beans.  To you, this is clean.  To someone else who has completely sworn off grains, this  could be looked at as not clean or acceptable.  If you normally eat a lot of processed foods including, but not limited to, fast food, doughnuts, ice cream, frozen pizza and chicken nuggets but in your quest for a healthier life start replacing some of those foods with vegetables, fruits, rice or quinoa, lean cuts of meat, whole grains, etc….still to some this won’t be acceptable as “truly clean” but in comparison to your norm, it is a HUGE improvement.  You’d be surprised at the number of people who take part in food shaming.  I myself have been guilty of it in the past.

I cannot say this enough…I HATE FOOD SHAMING.  And there’s a lot of it going on today.  You should never assume that your way is the only way.  NEVER.  If whatever you are doing works for you, wonderful!  I love that.  But if you believe that everyone who does something different is doing it wrong, then you have a problem.  I see a lot of trainers today that offer these cookie cutter programs.  If you are a professional in this industry and do not take the time to actually get to know your client before taking their money and pushing the same plan you offer to everyone on them, then shame on you.

People are unique.  It stands to reason that what will work best for one is not going to be the same as everyone else.  When I first started working with clients, I was seriously surprised at how many “certified” people out there were acting so irresponsibly.  I’m sure I’m naive, but I kind of assumed that you are trying to help people if you are doing this as a profession.  Yes, we all want to be paid for our job, but if you don’t take the time to truly learn what it is that your client will respond best to, then aren’t you also hurting your own chances at success in the process?  No one wants a trainer who just throws a plan at you and then dumps you.

If you are just starting your fitness journey and aren’t sure what to do, please be wary of anyone who operates with a “my way or the highway” mentality.  It’s just plain wrong.  That’s all there is to it.  In my last challenge group, there was  a woman who loves Zumba.  I have never had any desire to try Zumba.  But I know lots of people who love it.  If it gets you off the couch and moving, then why in the world would anyone discredit it?  But yet, I have witnessed many fitness enthusiasts bashing and making fun of it.  WHY???  Why would you ever want to put down a person for trying to be healthier?  It’s the same way with food.  If I had a dime for every fitness account I’ve had to unfollow on Instagram because they think it’s funny to make fun of a person’s chosen path towards a healthier life, I’d be a rich woman.  And we wonder why there is an obesity problem?  It’s intimidating enough to just begin, throwing food shame & making fun of a person’s chosen exercise method on top of it?  It will completely turn people away from it for good.

I wish we could live in a world where anyone’s efforts towards a healthier lifestyle, whether they be baby steps or giant leaps, whether they mirror our own efforts or take them in a different direction, were cause for celebration and encouragement instead of judgement and ridicule.

Saying Goodbye to George

I’ve been putting this post off for a little while, though I know that I really do want to write it.

If you’ve been following my blog over the years, then you’re familiar with my friend & neighbor, George, and how my little Hannah brought us together.

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We have had some fun times over the years.  Every Friday for several years I could always count on him to make me laugh.

And though I heard the same stories over and over again many times, I never got tired of hearing about his world travels.  He really was a fascinating guy.

He fell this past winter and laid on the floor in his home for several hours before he could reach the phone.  He was taken to the hospital and was no longer allowed to live on his own.  He had no family here in Indiana, so his niece flew in from Colorado and took him back to her house.  He passed away not long after that.  He was old and his body was weak, so while I wasn’t really surprised at the news, I was still heartbroken.  And I’m so thankful that I was able to say goodbye to him before he left.  I even got a hug & kiss on the cheek from him, which I will always be grateful for.

He was quirky and sometimes cranky.  But he was also witty and charming.  I am so thankful that God put us together, even if it was for a few short years.  He was my friend and I loved him.

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Klutzy Mama

One hard workin' dad, an accident-prone mama, and two crazy kids!

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