Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Diane at Fit To Finish has a blog that presents some very interesting food for thought for those on the weight loss journey. I enjoy reading her entries, but find for may things my experience s very different from that of many people losing weight. Yesterday she posted an entry about secrets, and I found myself remembering my own motivations. They were not secrets in the least, but instead "head tapes" that got made in a jumble of events.

Unjlike most overweight people , I have never been thin. Scratch that- perhaps a month after my birth I was considered normal. I came into the world at 8 lbs, and became a sort of chubby baby. At 18 months I was wearing 3T outfits and by the time I entered first grade I was 200 pounds. I was healthy for what they knew at the time, active, in a loving family who had somewhat odd values. My father was a very outdoorsy type who loved to take us on all kinds of wilderness adventures, and get us stuck in a lot of scary situations , where he rescued us. As a chilod I had seen my father save us from going over a waterfall, defend our family against a bear attack, get us over a mountain pass in a blizzard and more. There was nothing that could defeat him and nothing he could not do. In a way it was kind of like being the daughter of some Greek God or something.

Every dinner of my young life , he would make reference to someone being a good eater, and connect that thought to being strong. Now to have this incredibly strong and brave man impart the secrets of strength to a child was potent stuff ! I got the message that food is strength, and to be strong you must eat a lot. In his defense it was part of the parental desire to impart the wisdom of the ages on your children AND insure that there was no waste. We were far from rich people, and wasting food was pretty close to a sin.

Fast forward to my adult years, and the discovery that my weight was preventing me from conceiving. I lost 110 pounds and in the process i did a self directed food "addiction " course through the Meredith Meyer clinic. It was through this work that I uncovered my reason for overheating, and I came to a place of peace with it. Food did not make one a strong person, but instead how you respond to a challenge makes you strong. I got pregnant at last, but my discovery was to be challenged here. I had a stillbirth, and it took every ounce of my being not to fall into the belief that it happened because I was in some way weak , and therefore eat for strength. I succeeded in reminding myself that food is not strenght, lost the baby weight , developed two scary ovarian cysts, had surgery and conceived again. 8 weeks into the pregnancy strength eating again became a consideration when I began bleeding and difficulties with the pregnancy began. I was put on bedrest for 5 months, with nothing much to do but do a few crafts and worry. The more I worried ( which was given new fuel with every Doctor's visit) the more I struggled to find something to keep me sane, and finally I could not escape the strength eating urge. I gained almost 90 pounds in the pregnancy, but after 9 1/2 very stressful months my son was born.

I think if something is meant to be a challenge to you it will find a way to repeat events and present itself into your life if you need refinement or clarity , and so it happened with me and my belif about strength. At 9 months old my son began to act atypical. He did not baby bable, was verty drawn to climbing, kept to his own world a lot, would often flap his hands and certain textures would either comfort him more than normal or repel him into a dark place.Loads and loads of ear infections came with this time as well. There were many things that were just not normal, but I could not completely put my finger on it. Our pediatrician kept brushing me off and prescribing yet stronger antibiotics, and I was scared. Something was not right with my son, no one was listening and it seemed that I was going to have to be the one to figure out what was wrong and fix it. I needed answers and a lot of strength. My son spiraled into a weird place ruloed by textures, and he would only eat things like plain pasta or peanut butter on white bread. For weeks at a time. His weight ballooned. We would take him to playgrounds and he would either be too big for the equipment he could developmentally understand or become totally confused as to how to use it. We would place him in group settings like Tot Rock or Little Kickers and he would stay lost in his own world , and become a disruption to the group so we were asked to leave. I was terrified. I demanded strength, and my own weight ballooned. Then one day the word Autism and my son collided, and I was at once relived and terrified.

Time went on , and one fine day we were shopping . My 420 pound son was aching from walking , as was I. We sat down at a bench in a store and it broke. That woke me up, and this part of my brain that was trained in my first weight loss journey woke up and said you will now do things my way. Strength does not come from food- only fuel which can lead to insulation. And so we began our journey.

Breakfast yesterday ( which was followed by another lovely walk) was polenta, 1/4 cup mozerella cheese, 1/2 cup of eg beaters and a carton of probiotic yogert for 417 calories ( I saved the yogert for later)

Lunch was turkey and cheddar on an Arnolds Thin, heated , with 2 baby clementines, carrots, celery , brocoli and a Smart food and diet soda - 430 calories Afternoon snack was 100 calorie pack almonds, a snack pack pudding and an apple for 290

Dinner was Chicken spinach asiago sausage in marinara sauce over 2 oz of Heartland Pasta with a tossed salad on the side, followed by
an Aldis Fit and Active Skinny Cow clone. Meal total was 575. Later in the evening I had a Fiber Plus bar, a honeycrisp apple and an Aldi's snack pudding for 320 calories. Day total calories was 2000 on the nose !

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

O goosey darling....

Yesterday morning we went for a long walk in the stiff wind with cool temps. Definitely a fall morning here ! As we walked and observed the colorful leaves clinging for dear life, a small gaggle of geese decided this would be a good resting place, and they came to a landing. Have you ever watched geese land ? While they may be able to fly long distances and swim comfortably in cold water, they are not very graceful at landing. They hit the ground, they stumble and sometimes they even crash into each other. When the latter happens, there are no goose fights because one goose perceived that another was invading their space or disrespecting. They simply go about their business as a group. It occurred to me that there is a weight loss lesson in these feathered friends. Life will fly along with our efforts, and some events and circumstances are going to crash into us. We cannot let them affect our decision to continue on the journey, and their collision with us is not intentional.When they happen, we have to just get back to the business at hand. Our landings ( weight loss attempts) are not always picture perfect. We make mistakes, pick approaches that do not necessarily work with our body ( The Grapefruit Diet, the Hot Dog Diet, etc) but that does not mean we cannot complete the journey. A different approach , a different angle at which we plant our feet ( different, sensible eating plan) and finding a more open surface ( a sensible exercise program) will make our landings look better. And as always, the journey is safer and more successful when taken with companions.

Breakfast yesterday was an interesting result of a crash landing- our Aldi's ran out of the original wraps and so I had to substitute Thomases English Muffins. The filling was supposed to go in a burritto, and contained 1/6th of a bell pepper, 2 mushrooms, 1/3 of an onion, 3 slices turkey bacon diced, 1/4 cup shredded Italian blend cheese and 1/2 cup egg beater. You cook the veggies and bacon. mix with the egg and cheese, spread on a big jelly roll pan and bake 20 min at 350. Take it our, cut it into mortion size( I made enough filling for 6) , and the result was a sandwich too big to bite ! V8, a probiotic yogert and a honeycrisp apple -400 calories

Lunch was a Pizza on a wrap from the freezer , made with red pepper hummus, mozzarella cheese, bacon bits, mushroom and green pepper strips, carrot sticks, 2 baby clementines and a Snack Pack pudding with a diet soda-440 calories

Afternoon snack( not pictured ) was the usual for 270 caolories

Dinner was a potato and ground turkey curry with sliced cucumbers and another diet soda for 475 calories. I am not sure if I will make this again- the curry flavor was not quite there. Later in the evening, while watching Dancing with the stars I had 2 wasa multi grains, 2 laughing cow lights, 100 calorie pack of almonds and a honeycrisp apple for 340 calories. Daily total was 1925.

Less windy today but cooler. Several more geese have been flying overhead today. I wonder what they will teach me on our walk today ?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Anti Jemima

We made a discovery yesterday- waffles are a bad breakfast choice. Even if they are high fiber, even if they are made with light syrup, even if served with protein, they are too much of a refined carb hit to be lasting. This creates a bit of a predicament for Sunday mornings. Hubby serves as a cantor ( song leader) for 2 different congregations, and many weeks he has to be out the door before 8 am and will not be back home to 1:30 pm. Sunday breakfasts have to be quick, filling and long lasting. We had been doing crockpot grains, but everyone got tired of it and we needed a changed. I started making waffles and pancakes to freeze and toast which seemed to work when we used fruit instead of syrup. Two weeks now we have tried waffles with lite syrup and wound up starving by 10 am . Starting next week I am going to try some crockpot breakfast casseroles for this day

Breakfast- homemade waffle with 1/2 cup egg beaters and 1/4 cup lite syryp - 260 calories. Later in the morning I had a cup of probiotic yogert and 100 calorie pack of almonds for 210 calories - 470 calories for the morning

Lunch was ham and cheddar on an Aldi's Original wrap, heated and served with sliced cucumber, tomato , a honeycrisp apple and a snack pack pudding-445 calories

Afternoon snack was consumed while wandering around Target , looking at the Halloween decorations and more. A Starbucks Pumplin Spiced Frappicinio Lite Grande with whipped cream and 2 Hersheys Pumpkin Kisses tht were handed out as Samples. The Pumpkin spiced fra lite is 150 calories on its own, but when paired with this much whipped cream and the 2 kisses, I am counting the whole shebang as 300 calories. Tasty!

Dinner was oven fried chicken breast strips with Oven Roasted garlic Parmesan potatoes, steamed green beans and a tossed salad- 355 calories, and after dinner an Aldi's Skinny Cow was added , bringing the meal to 425 calories. Later in the evening I had a pudding, an apple and a Fiber Plus bar for 320 calories, bringing the days total to 1860 calories.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

10 things

I claim a senior moment . All day long yesterday I forgot to take any pictures of food ! Not only that, but one meal was something that I could only gestimate calorie wise ( stromboli at our produce market) , so I will take the day to do an entry of something else. My inspiration comes from Diane at Fit to the Finish and is called 10 things about me. Tell everyone 10 things about yourself that they may not already know. Should be fun- here goes !

1. In my life before kids I worked as an electrical tester and moved up to an engineering assistant who got to build prototype designs. One of the projects I worked on was this new , unheard of device called the cell phone.

2.I have made 13 full bed sized quilts in my lifetime and several wall quilts.
For a time I worked the craft show circuit with creations I had sewn or painted. I stopped when one of my partners, my father, had a heart attack, bypass and lost the upper body strength as a result. He did woodworking.

3.I did not learn to read till I was 6 , but once I did I quickly zoomed to a high school reading level , and I read for pleasure and understood Charles Dickens at the end of second grade.

4. We lived in our second apartment for 19 years, and had the landlady not died we would probably be there still. It was the upper floor of an old Victorian home where the yard was like a forest. All our babies were born there( we have had 5 miscarriages, one stillbirth and one living child). I loved that place and it will always be the place I consider to be my home. I lived there longer than anywhere else in my life.

5. I never planned on homeschooling, and had never even heard of it till my son was 2 yrs old. I began when he was 3, in an attempt to give him speech therapy and planned to take it year by year. He is now in his junior year of high school, and we have homeschooled him through it all. In that time we have never joined a support group and never attended a conference.

6 We were infertile for 8 years, and we corrected it through diet and weight loss.

7.My husband and I are of different faith paths, and are both considered clergy in each of our faiths. In our 28 yrs of marriage we have never had a fight about matters of spirituality or spiritual practice. Any fight we have ever had was about money.

8. I am the oldest of 5 and my husband is the oldest of 6. I believe this fact is the reason that when we decide to do something ,it gets done

9. As a child I was terrified of cigar store indians and ventriloquist dolls because I thought they were shells waiting for a soul and they might try to steal mine if I stood still near them.

10. My favorite book as a child was a collection of poetry illustrated by Tasha Tudor. In it there was the poem Rebecca by Hillaire Belloc. I adored that book and lost it in a move. I was thrilled to discover a copy of the poem in The Children's Book of Virtues not long ago. It made me want to sit down with a gallon of milk and a handful of Salerno Butter cookies, which must first be worn as rings and then dunked in milk.

So now you know. Back to food journals tomorrow !

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Weigh in this morning, and it seems that I got the proper level for my body, but I need to change things for the guys. I have been going by the calorie recommendations according to our individual BMR's, and while mine and my hubbies sounded realistic, my son's sounded out of the ballpark . However, in faith we tried it and once again I have been shown go with my gut instinct instead of an equation.

I lost 1.4 lbs
hubby gained 3.0 lbs
son gained 5.2 pounds

In hubby's case he had 2 forced meeting lunches this week( trapped in business meetings all day with people who believe pizza is still the best thing to serve), but my son has no one to blame but me. He ate every meal from this kitchen, prepared according to the guidelines and exercised. I am sorry- I don't care what science indicates. 3100 calories a day is too much for any human being beyond Micheal Phelps, but that is what the BMR charts said he needed ! So next week hubby moves closer to 2000 calories and son down to 2500, and all should be fine. Huge sigh of relief here- do you have any idea how hard it is to find 3100 calories worth of real quality food every day ?

Blogger is cooperating with pictures, so here is yesterdays food log for me. Breakfast was 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 3/4 cup blueberries (frozen) and 1 c rice checks with a carton of pro biotic yogurt and coffee- 390 calories

Lunch was red pepper hummus and provalone cheese on an Arnolds Thin, carrot sticks and broccoli, an apple and a 100 calorie pack of smartfood with water- 450 calories

Snack- 100 cal pack almonds, snack pack pudding and an apple-290 calories and not pictured

Dinner was a creation inspired by an old classic - country steak and gravy over roast root veggies and salad. Take a turnip, a sweet potato and a large carrot, cube them and roast at 350 for about an hour. THen take a chub of ground turkey and mix with dried onion, garlic powder and salt and pepper. Spread it into a thin layer on a cookie sheed and bake at 350 for about 45 min. Meanwhile make gravy- 2 T margarine with 1/4 c flour, garlic powder and 2 cups beef broth. Divide all the items into 3 portions, place veggies on the plate, top with 1/3 of the meat mixture and 1/3 of the gravy. A very satisfying 300 calorie meal

This one fell below the target of 466 calories per meal , so we each added an Aldi's form of a Skinny Cow ice cream for 120 calories. Later in the evening I had an apple, a fiber plus bar and a 100 calorie pack of almonds for 320 calories. Total calories for the day for me- 1865.

This coming week I want to focus more on creating an exercise routine for son and I now that we have the food end pretty well nailed down. It is one thing to pick Fit TV every day, but we need to set a definite goal and rotation- like 30 min yoga or 10 minutes abs and strength training and so on.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Must See Fit TV

For some reason Blogger does not like pictures from my computer this morning, so today's entry will have to be without pictures.

Yesterday I asked myself what could I do to make this life changing project better . For a lot of reasons, through these two plus years of weight loss certain things have become clear to me. One, it has to be affordable in time and finances because our life is not one dimensional. Meaning we are not three people living in a vacuum called weight loss. We are a family who lives with one wage earner, one car, ministry involvement, alternative healing work, homeschooling and autism. Like it or not, all of those factors are JUST as important to focus on as what the scale is or is not doing. All of these factors require time, effort and attention on our part - and often in greater proportions than weight loss. Second thing is that it must be sustainable. It must involve things that can be done no matter how tight our income becomes, how busy our schedule gets and so forth. This is a lifestyle change after all, and life does not always flow in perfection. It is a guarantee that our income will be cut in the summer months, time will be at a premium from the months of September through January and so forth.

It occurred to me that one really helpful thing would be to create a working schedual of exercise. I am very good about following set schedules - it comes from years of my husband's music ministry commitments and homeschooling I guess. If it is written down I will follow it, and if I start doing something the other two follow. So I started looking at assorted exercises that could be done with the equipment and such that we have at home( beyond walking) , and it dawned on me that all I may need to to is schedual Exercise TV on Demand. We have cable , and our package includes On Demand, and under sports I belive is exercise and a multitude of work outs to choose from. So I flipped to it durning our gym portion of the day and we picked a workout to try. Actually three of them. One was a line dance that my son thought would be fun , and it was till we started crashing into wach other and I gave him a bloody nose. I am not a dancer, but I know blood on the dance floor is not a good thing. So next we switched to a Jillian Micheals upper body work out, which was short and felt really affective. We felt so good that we finished that and moved on to a 10 minute lower body work out, and this is where it got interesting. It began innocently enough, and then moved into something involving squats. Now my knee and squats have never gotten along - it puts way too much pressure on the joint and can leave me unable to walk for a time due to the pain. However, i am a mom and this weird part of me knows that the best teacher is example, so I tried my very best to modify the exercise enough to not injure my knee and be effective so that both son and I could finish the work out. I did it ! My knee survived, but my thigh muscles ....

Grocery shopping with thighs of jello is not a good thing. Carrying groceries with thighs of jello is even worse. On the way there and back I was not talking much because I was mentally willing my thighs to preform the tricky action of walking and standing up. Hubby thought I was mad at him till I told him I had simply found a new way to destroy myself that day. All the while I was silently chastising myself. Before I injured my knee as a teen, I had incredibly muscular thighs that could press 400 pounds. Now, a few minutes of squats acts like kryptonite ! However, I think using exercise TV a couple times a week will be a good thing for us. If nothing else son and I can get a giggle watching each other challenge themselves in new and painful ways. And in the process we will become even healthier people who may make the scale be a bit more cooperative.

Calorie count for the day was 1850- hopefully tomorrow blogger will like my pictures !

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I can be dangerous when I get a few free minutes.

Yesterday was one of those wonderful days where the planets all fell in alignment, the winds were favorable and everything just flowed. We got in a session of boxing with the Wii, Yoga with Bob Harper, school done, house cleaned AND I got three spare minutes together with 100 extra brain cells. The last part I think I can blame/thank Marissa at Trim The Fat for. I see someone kissing their coffee cup in appreciation and I grab myself a second cup. Then a third. Coffee- it's not just a beverage. It is a necessity of motherhood ! Anyway , in my spare time I decided to start on a project that will ultimately save me time, sanity and more. I wanted to create a master menu plan- something that had 15-20 menus for different breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks- all with calorie counts, all utilizing the majority of items from our lowest cost stores, all that are winners in regards to taste preferences and all healthy options. I have made a habit of making my menus on the computer in an editable word document ( a simple grid form in Word works nicely, and you can get one at Donna Young's grid page. So I decided to start assembling , based on the forms from this week and next, and before I knew it I had 12 different options for each meal /snack in about a minute ( cut and paste, you rule !). Then I opened up my recipe program Mastercook , and was able to fill in the remaining holes. Mastercook calculates the calories, fat, fiber and such for a recipe, and is a very useful program. In about 30-45 minutes, I had my dream master menu plan assembled. I will never again have to devote 8 hours to planning a menu for the week ! Plus, limiting the menu to 20 different options it helps me to know what will be the best things to buy in bulk and keep stocked in the cabinets. I am so happy !

Yesterday's breakfast was 1/2 cup egg beaters with onion, mushroom, 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese , 2 oz of turkey ham , a Thomases lite better choice english muffin and Promise lite with coffee and cream- 390 calories

Lunch - a roast beef and cheddar roll up on Aldi's Original wrap with carrots, celery, broccoli and an apple. A Crystal Lite accompanied- 410 calories

My afternoon favorite for 290 calories. I am thinking I need to start using some Mr Potatohead face things to dress up my apples for pictures !

Dinner was another late one because of hubby's meeting and people were too hungry for me to let the sauce in this reduce. Chicken caccitore ( hey, I struggle spelling English words many days- DON'T expect me to spell Italian ones any better !) over Heartland Pasta (190 calories per serving with omega 3's) and spinach-472 calories

evening snack, enjoyed sometime between Dancing with The Stars and Glee-320 calories. It is frustrating- Wednesday nights now have way too many TV options ! I am gong to have to catch up on a lot of things I want to see on Hulu or On Demand.

Good day of accomplishments, and 1862 calories !

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Now how many calories are there in katsup ???

I don't know if I am getting older or if menu planning according to calories is just plain hard, but yesterday wound up kind of a disaster. I decided to get a jump on this dreaded job before school while my son was occupied in the wonders of NASA , and I started to plan the menu. It involved a lot of stops to figure out how many calories are in a tablespoon of crasins, find the jar of spaghetti sauce to get it's nutritional information and so forth. Repeat that a billion times. Then go back to change the plan because what was planned is not going to be portable for hubby or remembering this is a food that son really gags on or it provokes an autistic behavior. Then realizing we had the same main ingredient for lunch or that this is something tht would be impossible to make because of comittments on that day and......suddenly it was 2 pm, we had not done school and I was questioning why calorie count information in real life use is so hard to find. I started having fantasies about a grocery flyer that listed not only the price of the sale item, but its calorie count and other NI as well. Good news is I got it done and we salvaged the school day. Bad news is today I have to start laying out the lesson plan for next week- or I should say the hunting down of materials for the week , AND catch up on the things we missed yesterday.

Breakfast was a Thomases lite english muffin, 2 T almond butter and a carton of probiotic yogert with coffee-400 calories. Looking at it I thought this will never last, but it did.

When we had lunch I was starving and annoyed ! I had a Bocca burger on an Arnolds Thin, cup of homemade minestrone soup, salad with romaine, tomatoes and cucumbers and a bag of smart food. Crunchy appeals when I am annoyed. Calorie count-425

Afternoon snack was an apple, 17 almonds and a snack pack pudding for 290 calories

Dinner was late as hubby was in another software meeting till late. This factor really saved the day , as we were able to get in what school we did because of the delay. Dinner was turkey meat loaf in the crock pot ( I added too much liquid to the mix and it was the consistency of meat pudding) steamed green beans, roast turnip and carrots with sliced cucumbers for 420 calories. Roasting any veggie brings out a new depth of flavor to it.

Evening snack at 310 calories, bringing my total count for the day to 1845. Hubby had a rough day as well, and we were just happy to have the day over and be together. We watched Dancing with the Stars and 18 Kids and Counting as we took cake of evening details and joked with each other. Nice evening.

Today is another day, and I am not going to let The Detail Monster make me crazy !

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Another reason for exercise

Do you want to know one of the biggest reasons every person should get some kind of movement/exercise every day ? The reason is not weight loss, cardiovascular health, muscle toning or anything like that ( though movement does indeed improve these things), but rather an ingenious device in our bodies called the lymphatic system. It operates in our bodies, running parallel to our circulatory system, preforming its function ( the immune system) silently and with little attention. This system is one of our bodies workhouses in the business of defense against invaders, and most people only hear about it when discussing cancer and someone mentions that the disease spread to the lymph glands. The system delivers lymphatic fluids, with cells that attack invading substances and help to carry out wastes . This wonderful system has one catch - it has one way valves and it needs the actions of our muscles and circulatory system in order to pump.If we are immobile it works , but when we are up and active it works more efficiently. It is one factor in the spread of colds and flu - we get less of these in the summer because we are more active, get more exposure to Vitamin D and more fresh air. Consider exercise in this upcoming cold and flu season as important to your health as a potential flu shot- and better still if it is done out in the fresh air and sunshine.

Yesterdays breakfast - 1 cup rice chex, 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 3/4 cup berries and coffee- 280 calories. I grabbed a probiotic yogert (110 and not pictured) after a Will boxing workout with my son.

Lunch was a variation on an old classic- a B.A.L.T.- bacon, avacado, lettuce and tomato sandwich. 2 slices whole wheat bread, 3 strips of turkey bacon, 3 slices tomato and 4 lettuce leaves with 1 T mayo. Celery, carrot, broccoli and an apple joined in -450 calories

Afternoon snack - the usual at 290 calories

Dinner was the return of a family favorite- Crazy Pizza. Take ground turkey and brown it, add 2 c slices mushrooms and 1 green pepper, chopped, saute for a few minutes and add 2 cans of tomato sauce with 2 T italian seasoning and 1 pack stevia ( to cut the twang). Then take a tueb of refrigerator biscuits, cut each round into wedges and stir it in the mix. Pour into a greased casserole, top with 3 slices of cheese or 3/4 cup shredded mozzerella and bake at 350 of 45 minutes. Pizza fix at less calories- the recipe serves 6 but we divide it in 3 because we have a high calorie need. Serve with broccoli and a tossed salad made with lettuce, tomato and cucumbers- 420 calories for the meal

Evening snack was a little different for me- 2 wasa multi grain crisps, 2 wedges of laughing cow lite, grapes and a 100 calorie pack of almonds- 340 calories Day total was 1890

Today is menu planning day , and I am kind of reminding myself that it will get easier as I move along ! Between this and school, it is going to be an interesting day.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Truths discovered

Belly dancing it seems , has two truths for me. First, it is best practiced in total privacy ! A few years back I had a Videotape set of the twin bellydancing instructors that I was using ( on the advice of my gyno to help improve my abdominal tone as well as my bladder, uterus and all that) and I would use them every day till my son would start laughing and talking about mommy's belly jiggling. (Gee thanks kiddo- you are one big reason it is the way it is now). So eventually I stopped doing them. I am not trying to do that workout any more ( certain moves are very painful on my knee) , but rather perfecting different motions that require more from my abdominal muscles than anything. At least for now. I got the privacy yesterday morning while they went to church, and I had a lot of fun , and the lack of giggling was a HUGE plus .

Second truth- working on these stomach muscles brought almost instant relif to my knee, which is making me belive that the cause of the problem might well be a pinched or pressed nerve due to a disc in my back. It is possible that one of the discs is just slightly out of alignment and putting weird pressure on the nerve. Working abdominal rolls shifted something, and the pain dissapeared. Not only that, but it stayed dissapearded for the rest of the day and into the night. I actually got a decent nights sleep last night, even with it being very damp and humid. Weird but true.

I am also discovering that trying to eat a 200 calorie a day diet and make it be quality healthy food is kind of hard to swallow. By that I mean there seems to be a heck of a lot of food !

Breakfast was a homemade Fiber One waffle made with extra water( we like them thinner) and a slice of turkey ham with 1/4 cup of syrup and coffee - 300 calories

Lunch was a recipe of Pepper Steak from a weight watchers cookbook with 2 fortune cookies and a diet soda - 451 calories. It was kind of interesting that this plate of pepper steak with brown rice ( covered by the mixture) was 10 calories less than a McDonalds Grilled chicken sandwich. Veggies bring volume to the party !

My afternoon favorite - 170 calories

Dinner was a Garlic pepper poached chicken breast, 2 oz(measured raw) Heartland Pasta with garlic, steamed asparagus , sliced cucumber and tomatoes with a diet soda- 390 calories

After dinner , this Aldi's imitation Skinny Cow ice cream sandwich joined in
He is so cute at 130 calories !

I also added a Fiber Plus bar, a probiotic yogurt and an apple later in the evening for 310 calories, but for some reason Blogger does not like the picture and I cannot upload it. Total calories consumed for the day was 1751- which is a 250 calorie deficit from my 2000, but I was not hungry in the least, nothing appealed to me snack wise so I just left it be.

Have a great Monday !

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Listening and crunching numbers

As human beings, we are made up of mind, body and spirit, and those three bodies work together to keep us in a state of wellness. They communicate to each other in a language that is beyond words, and when one becomes imbalanced through a deficit, it sends up warning signs to the other two bodies through things like pain, illness or extreme desires. Wellness is a matter of listening closely to the signals that each of these three give . Simple enough on paper, but in real life it can become hard to do because of actions and activities that make up our role in this thing we call life. Such may be the case with my knee. Yesterday , after a day of rest it was alright until I stood still on it for more than 30 seconds, and then it rewarded me with shooting pain. Considering I did NOTHING to bring about this painful condition, I am rationalizing that perhaps it may be my bodies attempt to tell me that I should be focusing on a different kind of exercise. While walking is good, it does not address the area of my greatest need, which is my abdomen. It is seriously out of shape. It never was in the greatest shape in the fist place ( Think abs of Charmin), it got seriously compromised in a year with two major surgical procedures ( exploritory surgery and a C Section involving a vertical incision) and a pregnancy involving an 11 lb 14 oz , 23 1/2 inch baby. Volume wise, he could have been a respectable twin delivery. These things have left my abdomen in a serious state of...well lets leave it to say not good. It puts pressure on my back , which then throws out my spine and joints, causes issues with every organ below the waist AND makes it difficult to find clothes to wear. In the buisiness of life , when I get time to exercise my mind screams walk, and I do. Perhaps my knee is trying to remind me that I really need to concentrate on something else. I have heard belly dancing moves can be excellent for toning this area. I think should investigate these through YouTube.

Breakfast yesterday was the house Saturday favorite- oatmeal with toppings. Old fashioned oats with brown sugar, a sprinkle of cinnamon, olive oil, almond butter, goji berries, ground flax, crasins and coconut- 400 calories. Coffee with creamer accompanied for another 35- so 435 for the meal. I have my meal allowance set at 466 calories and snacks at 300, so this is on target.

Lunch was grabbed and brought home to make a semi homemade meal that was fast. A McDonald's grilled chicken sandwich, a fat free sugar free medium iced coffee, carrot, celery and two hydroponic cherry tomatoes for 530 calories. The iced coffee put it over at 90 calories, but I was really needing a lift and I really like the taste of McDonalds coffee ! It did not blow my day though. Sub total so far 960. At 2000 calories, a respectable level.

Afternoon snack was a honey crisp apple, snack pac pudding and 100 calorie pack of almonds.I was not completely hungry, but I knew I needed to snack to keep my metabolism constant. These 290 calories were the planned way to do this . 1250 for the day so far

Dinner was another "love dinner" for my son and I . Hubby was at the wedding, and son and I did what we could to make the evening special- it's a tradition in this house. Dinner was a grilled cheese on a Thomases Lite muffin, Terra Chips, celery, carrot and broccoli, a cup of homemade veggie soup and a raspberry shortcake made with 2 desert shells, a cup of frozen raspberries and ready whip. The dessert was his choice, and a far better one than his old love, gelatto ! This meal came in at 600 calories, mainly because I still had so many to go to get to 2000 calories. By the time we finished I was full and kind of tired of eating, but at 1850 calories I was going to need a snack later. Perhaps the fact that this meal had so much fiber in it factored in that feeling.

Later in the evening I was getting a little rumbly , so I grabbed the planned snack for the night, except I grabbed the wrong brand of fiber bar. 260 for this snack combo, which put me at 2110 for the day. I am not going to worry about it because the weekends tend to be a little higher in calories and activity than the rest of the week , and according to the menu plan most of my days are going to be closer to 1850 than 2000, so it will balance out through the week.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

On a roll

It seems that we are definitely on to something with this new method of calculating calories and exchanges. It is working. Results for the week are as follows

Me- down 0.6 ( I will take a slow and steady loss any day !)
Hubby - down 0.8 ( Would probably have been more had it not been from a wedding rehersal dinner last night)
Son - down 1.4

It seems the calorie count for each ( me at 2000, hubby at 2500 and son at 3100) is the level we need to be at. Starting next week ( because I am now including them in the menus I plan) I will start including the calorie counts for the meals. Before this I wrote down the plan, crunched the numbers on the calculator and did not include them on the final menu plan.

Breakfast yesterday was 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 3/4 c bluberries and 1 c rice chex with coffee

Morning snack was 100 calorie almonds and grapes

Lunch was roast beef and cheddar on an Aldi's Original Wrap with 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt, celery and carrot sticks and a cup of alphabet soup.

Afternoon snack was an apple and probiotic yogert

Dinner was a 3 cheese pizza on an Aldi's original wrap with mushrooms and bacon bits, cucumbers , celery and carrots on the side. It was a "love Dinner" for son and I , as hubby had to be at a wedding rehersal. Not pictured a little later was a 110 calorie ice cream bar , Fiber plus bar and a small clementine for snack- son and I were watching Glee together and I forgot to snap a picture.

My knee is still hurting , but has improved with rest. I am going to try taking a daily course of asprin to see if it helps keep down inflamation. I am also noticing that the original cause of this may be the way I am sitting at my computer- my leg is resting at a weird sort of angle because of the placement of my printer. It gets in that angle at the dining room table( also our school table)because of a couple of things that we have stored under it. I am going to try to make a concious effort to straighten me up while sitting at these places. I bet it will help.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Pain, my old friend

A pretty good day yesterday.My son was in a strange mood, where he wanted to play Sam Amigo for his workout( A Wii game where you play maracas with the remotes to music) and dance. Great idea, but he insisted he had to do this alone- I could watch but I could not play along.While he played , he turned it into a dance routine that could have put Chris Farley to shame. I had to fight from laughing, and after he finished I put on one of my Leslie Samson Indoor walking DVD's and got my own workout. It made most of me feel really good. I say most because it seems that my knee really does not like walking at the moment. It's not an arthritis flair, but something on the order of a bruised or hyper stretched tendon that is so painful it is preventing me from sleep. Neither Tylenol, Aspirin or Ibuprofen is helping, nor is topical things like Ben Gay or Arnica. This is a new one on me. I have broken bones, sprained muscles, dislocated joints, have arthritis, but this feels like a whole new weird thing. I have been up most of the night trying to get it comfortable enough to let me grab some zzz's. Now I am trying a change in position and blogging to keep me company at 3:30 in the morning.Gotta love the internet !

Breakfast was a homemade waffle ( Fiber One pancake mix made into a little more runny pancake and put on a waffle iron) topped with a 1/2 cup egg beater and 1/8 cup mozzarella cheese. Grapes, V8 and coffee kept it company. This made for a really satisfying breakfast !

Morning snack

Lunch was egg salad on an Arnolds Thin ( yes, two egg meals in a row), raw broccoli, half a cucumber and a baked sweet potato with 1 T coconut and 6 pecans. A teaspoon of margarine and a sprinkling of cinnamon finished him off. Sunchips and diet soda finished the meal. I really like baked sweet potatoes and my son gets terribly excited when we have them. I kept remembering that it was right around this time of year when I was pregnant with him that I could not get enough orange veggies, and would have done anything to get anything pumpkin. Now here he is , almost an adult, and liking this food group just as much.

Afternoon snack, and I was really hoping this would have staying power because dinner as going to be late tonight. Hubby is in the middle of a lot of long meetings involving software changes, and he is officiating at a wedding on Saturday, so Friday Night will be tied up with the rehersal and Saturday the wedding, changing our normal grocery shopping routine. We had to do our Friday stop today after he got home late. No big deal, but when you are used to eating at certsin times , it can be a problem.

Dinner, brought to you by your friendly crock pot . Turkey meatloaf made with ground turkey, oat bran, V8, an egg and spices, accompanied with sliced turnips, steamed green beans and salad. I lined the crockpot with turnip slices and put the meatloaf on top of these. The topping and juices drizzled down into the turnips , making them very sweet/savory tasting and yummy ! Fast, healthy and satisfying.

Evening snack, My Nintendo Personal Trainer walking Pedometer is the little white thing that managed to make it into the shot. I am thinking I should take a rest day today to see if the pain in my knee will go away.