A loss is a loss! I’m down 0.8 pounds this week for a total of 57.6 pounds lost. Considering I haven’t been tracking very well, I’m really happy with the scale result.
Last week, and again this week, we talked about our plans for Thanksgiving. A lot of people get really worried/stressed about the holiday meals. But honestly, it doesn’t freak me out too much.
One, I don’t really track. I enjoy the day and meal but refuse to get so stuffed that I’m in pain. Two, I try to only use one plate at dinner. If I realllllly want seconds I will get a small portion of only what I really want. Three, I take a picture of my plate. That way I know exactly what I ate and can track later if I decide to. And fourth, I enjoy the day! I love being around my family and friends and I thoroughly enjoy visiting and spending time with them.
Lastly, it is just one day. I don’t bring home leftovers and start back at WW again the next day. One day will not ruin me….so I will enjoy it and move on.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Now that I’m feeling mostly better (I still have a cough) I also now have a couple sprained ribs (from said coughing). Awesome. Luckily I have an amazing chiropractor who it helping me get them back into place.
Thursday was awful and I had a hard time breathing. But an adjustment and massage Thursday night helped a ton. Then another quick adjustment yesterday made it even better. Hopefully I can make it through the weekend without screwing them up again!
What a difference two years makes!
My husband took both of these photos on our two trips to Greece. In both photos I’m sitting near the flagpole on the Acropolis with the Parthenon in the background.
The first was taken on our honeymoon in 2011 when I was about three months into my weight loss journey. I had lost 18 pounds and was thrilled with the progress.
The second photo was taken this September (I FINALLY went through and narrowed down my photos!). Anyway, I had lost 44 pounds since the first photo was taken. But more than that, I’m such a different person in the second photo. Sure, I wish I was farther along in my weight loss. But you know what? I’m a heck of a lot happier person now than I was two years ago. And I’m more confident in myself.
Also, I’m in much better shape! Still not great, but I sure did scoot around the Acropolis a whole lot easier this time around! The only thing holding me back was the wind blowing up my skirt and flashing all the tourists. I was wearing boyshorts but they were nude so I’m fairly certain they all thought I was nekkid. I digress…..this trip I definitely had a much easier time hiking over the ruins and all over the city. Those forty four pounds definitely made a difference!
Well, I’m alive.
But let’s go back to the beginning.
So, almost three weeks ago (Saturday the 2nd) I was super excited that my husband was home from two weeks in Hawaii. The cleaning lady came, I had chili on the stove and we had friends coming for dinner. The dinner was delish and right after we finished I started feeling crappy. Shivering like crazy. Turns out I had a fever.
Well that stupid fever hung around for far too long. Occasionally it got pretty high (102.8) but most of the time it just hung around between 99.5-100.8….just enough to be annoying. And no other symptoms! Other than the stupid fever, I felt totally fine. It was off and on for a week when I went to the doctor the first time. She told me to come back after I had had it for 10 days. So, the next Wednesday I went in and they decided to do a full blood workup, chest x ray and some other tests.
To make a terribly long story very short….they tested for a whole slew of things…some scary, some not so scary. Things that were mentioned included: pneumonia, UTI, HIV, Hep A, B and C, mono, toxoplasmosis, etc. And me, with the super overactive imagination, mentally went a bit bonkers. Jeremiah did a great job of talking me off the ledge while waiting for the test results. The doctors were really strongly leaning towards mono because of my liver enzymes were so elevated, but when we ran more tests, they came back negative. Basically, they decided that I have a virus in my liver and I just had to wait for it to go away.
So, here I am, on Day 19, and finally feeling almost back to normal. I haven’t had a fever since yesterday morning (knock on wood) and I’m slowly getting my energy back. My eating has been terrible. I was not tracking points and was not eating well. I couldn’t grocery shop, let along cook, so we really relied on delivery. I was also getting barely any activity in. I still went to work for the most part (because I wasn’t contagious) but I was not moving much once I got there.
I did weigh in the first week and was up 2.2 pounds. I didn’t go to Weight Watchers the second week because I had a doctors appointment at the same time. But I weighed myself and home and I was up even higher (probably another 2 pounds).
Well, today I got myself back to the meetings and I was pleasantly surprised to see a 2.4 pound loss on the scale! I really was expecting it to be higher since I have been eating so poorly. I was really happy to have lost the weight I had (officially) gained the first week and (unofficially) gained the second week! My current total is 56.8 pounds lost!
So, what is coming up? I have a follow up doctors appointment with more blood work on Thursday to check on my liver enzymes….fingers crossed they are bette! Also, I’m getting back to tracking. I need to go grocery shopping and start cooking again. My goal is to meal plan next week since I’m eating at school a lot this week.
Also, how adorable is the get well soon card I received from my niece?! It totally made my day!
Hi! Thanks for the question! Oh man…I love PB2! Personally, I buy it in bulk (packs of four 1 pound bags) directly from Bell Plantation, the producers. I know you can also buy it from Amazon as well. I haven’t seen it in Trader Joe’s but I’ve had a few people tell me they found it at Whole Foods.
Oh man you guys…..this stuff is ah-mazing! And although it’s called breakfast chili, this is definitely a hearty dinner entree. My girlfriend introduced me to this paleo recipe and I immediately fell in love. I had been waiting until fall arrived to make it again and this was definitely the perfect cozy weekend chili.
The base of this chili is very much a traditional chili (minus the beans) and you might be suspicious of the additional flavors…I know I was! But the sweet potatoes add just a touch of sweetness, while the fried egg, bacon and avocado make it more savory. Absolutely perfect.
And if you are looking for another review, my friend Chris said that this was his favorite ever. When I asked him if he meant his favorite chili recipe ever or his favorite meal that I have cooked him and he said both! So there you go!
Please go check out the original recipe for Breakfast Chili here at Health-Bent. They have a TON of great recipes (lots of Paleo, like this recipe) and CrossFit info.
- 1 pound ground beef (I used 95/5)
- 1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
- 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 2 to 3 cups beef stock
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons hot sauce
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1/2 pound bacon
- eggs (1 per serving)
In a large soup pot, brown the meat and saute the onions until cooked thoroughly. You can cook them both at the same time. Add the tomatoes, sweet potatoes, stock and all the spices. Let simmer until the sweet potatoes have cooked through, about 20-30 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop up the bacon and saute until crispy. Reserve until ready to serve. Fry one egg per person just before serving.
Serve chili topped with one fried egg, crumbled bacon, and avocado.
I only had a few small alterations to the recipe. I did not have smoked paprika so I just added a bit more regular paprika. I also found the chili to not quite be spicy enough so I added another couple tablespoons of hot sauce and added some chipotle powder. Also, I used sriracha hot sauce because that is all I had on hand and it was delicious. Oh, and I’m still working on perfecting my fried eggs, so Laurie did the honors of frying these up last night!
PointsPlus wise, the chili was fantastic. Minus all of the toppings, I calculated mine (with about 7 servings) to be 4 PointsPlus per serving. Add in the fried egg, bacon and avocado and my bowl came to about 8-10 PointsPlus.
As a side dish to the chili, I made some jalapeno cornbread. I started with THIS recipe but unfortunately forgot the Greek yogurt so I had to kind of wing it. I ended up adding a half a can of creamed corn, some diced jalapenos, a splash of milk, about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and some shredded mexican cheese. Next time I make it I will try to measure and get a better total for the PointsPlus. Either way, the jalapeno cornbread was a perfect addition to the chili!
I’m loving the cozy soups of fall and plan on making another chili variety next weekend when Jeremiah comes home!
Crock Pot Chicken Gyros and Lemon Rice
I’m so proud to say that I have been really sticking to my meal plan this week! I was really looking forward to last night’s meal and I was not disappointed. Since Jeremiah is still in Hawaii, I invited Chris and Laurie over for some yummy foods.
This chicken recipe could not be easier. I prepped everything the night before in about 15 minutes and stored it in the fridge overnight. I ran home on my lunch hour to start it cooking since I was working an 11 hour day instead of my usual 8 hours. If I hadn’t been working a long day I could have left it cooking on low without a problem.
Please check out the original recipe (and tons of other awesome recipes!) over at Six Sisters’ Stuff but here is the super easy and delicious recipe!
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 onion, diced
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
Directions: Spray crockpot with non-stick cooking spray. Place chicken breasts inside slow cooker. Mix remaining ingredients together in a bowl and pour over chicken breasts. Cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours. Shred chicken with a fork.
I decided to serve this delicious dish with pita pockets, tzatziki and heirloom cherry tomatoes. I cut back on my PointsPlus by only using half of a pita rather than the whole thing folded in two. The tzatziki I bought from Trader Joe’s and was pleasantly surprised! As a Greek, I’m pretty picky about my tzatziki. TJ’s could have used a little more garlic, but it was pretty good!
PointsPlus wise, this entree was pretty great. The chicken made about 6 servings and each serving came out to be 3 PointsPlus. I made my sandwich with half of a regular pita (2 PointsPlus) and 2 tablespoons of tzatziki (1 PointsPlus) for a grand total of 6 PointsPlus! (Obviously the PointsPlus will vary with ingredients and serving size)
Funnily enough, the side dish I paired with the gyros was higher in PointsPlus than the entree! I made a super yummy but far too high in PointsPlus lemon rice. It is not really Weight Watchers friendly, so I’m not going to post the recipe, but you can check it out HERE if you want. Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious…but at 9 PointsPlus per serving, its just not 100% worth it. I think I will try it without all the butter and see how it tastes. I’ll get back to you all!
Overall, this was a great meal. I got some great feedback from Chris and Laurie, so I know I’m not alone! Next up will be an easy breakfast frittata (that I accidentally made this morning and it was amazing.)
Add this to Pinterest HERE!
Blackened Cajun Tilapia with a Spinach Salad
Last nights dinner was an adventure for me! I cooked fish! Like, from scratch! I have baked pre packaged fish before, but nothing more difficult than opening a package and plopping it on a baking sheet.
I am new to liking fish. I used to hate it because all I ever had was salmon. Turns out I don’t hate fish, I just hate salmon! A revolution! Working at a culinary school has really helped introduce me to the large variety of fish that I actually DO like. Some of my faves include tilapia, whitefish, and cod.
A while ago I bought some frozen tilapia from Trader Joe’s at my friends suggestion. It has been hanging out in my freezer for a couple months since Jeremiah still doesn’t like fish (I’m working on him!). But with him away on a work trip I took the opportunity to try my hand at cooking it.
I decided to try making blackened tilapia and did some googling for recipes. Basically I found out you just cover the fillet in seasonings and pan fry it. Easy enough.
I made sure to defrost my fillets in the fridge all day and came home to mostly defrosted fish. I finished it off in the microwave for a few minutes. Then I patted the fish dry with a paper towel and liberally sprinkled both sides with no sodium Cajun seasoning.
While I was working on that, I also had a medium skillet warming up to medium-high with 2 tablespoons of coconut oil. When it was nice and hot I added the fillets. The recipes I had found said to cook it for three minutes per side but mine ended up needing about 5-6 minutes.
While the fish was cooking I put together a yummy salad. Baby spinach, heirloom cherry tomatoes, goat cheese, olive oil, fresh squeezed lemon juice, salt and pepper is by far my favorite salad combo. If you haven’t tried it, you really should. It’s so simple but the flavors are pretty fantastic. The lemon juice is amazing and the oil gets you a serving of healthy oils!
The only issue I had was not cooking the fish in a nonstick skillet. I made the mistake of using a different pan and the fish really stuck to the bottom. It still tasted great but the presentation was not up to par. Womp womp!
PointsPlus wise, this meal was amazing. The whole meal came in at 11 PointsPlus and was super filling. Three servings of vegetables, great lean protein, serving of oil and a half serving of dairy. Fantastic!
Guys, I’m kicking some butt lately! Today’s weigh in showed another 1.8 pounds lost! Hooray!! That brings my total to 58.8 pounds lost!
So far I have been sticking to my meal planning really well. (I will be posting last night’s dinner later today.) Tomorrow is a crock pot meal with friends that I’m really looking forward to trying!
This weekend I will be attending a baby shower and having some friends over for dinner. Not terribly busy but enough to keep me moving!
I hope you all are having a fantastic week. Do you do WIW? If so, how did you do?
Jeremiah is officially in the air on his way to Hawaii. Lucky jerk. Only kidding…..he’s not a jerk…..especially since he said he will bring me home a present!
Annnnnyway, I have planned out my dinners for the rest of the week! I’m going to hit up Trader Joe’s this evening and buy supplies for breakfasts and dinners. I will have lunch at the school, so that’s taken care of.
I really have a hard time overeating in the evenings when Jeremiah is away, simply because of boredom. That is not cool. So, I have scheduled my week so that I’m not going to get super bored. I’m getting my hair done one night, nails done another, an out of town work conference next week, cleaning lady coming one day during the weekend, a baby shower on another day, visiting some friends, having some friends for dinner, etc. That should help keep me out of the house.
I also am going to work on getting moving more. I want to go to the boxing circuit class on Sunday and I want to get to the treadmill a couple times as well. I have been focusing on getting my ActiveLink to a 100% each night (or as close as I can) so I know that my day to day activity is better than previous weeks.
Anyway, that is what’s up over my way. Hope you all had a great weekend!
Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal
OK, I have to admit to you all that I didn’t get up and run this morning. I know, I know….I suck! I just couldn’t pull myself from my warm bed! And when I did drag myself from the coziness, I made myself this tasty fall concoction.
I had some extra pumpkin in my fridge and while I was brainstorming ways to use it I remembered this delicious breakfast I made a couple times last year. So I searched through my site and found the original posts and links to the recipe.
Side note: did you all know you could do that? I tag all of my posts with keywords and the ingredients! So all you have to do is type ‘pumpkin’ into the search box on the right side of the page and all of my posts where I have used pumpkin will show up! It’s a whole lot quicker than browsing through the breakfast or food pages! Ok, back to the topic at hand!
Annnnnyway, I found this post and decided I had to make it immediately. The oatmeal bakes in the oven for 20 minutes and literally takes like 3 minutes to throw together. It is not only cody and delicious, but also really satisfying. The oatmeal kept me full all the way until lunch!
This recipe is from a great blog called Chocolate Covered Katie and the original recipe can be seen HERE! Below is how I made mine this morning.
- Preheat the oven to 380 degrees and grease a small oven safe bowl or ramekin.
- In a small mixing bowl, combine all ingredients.
- 1/2 cup quick cooking oatmeal
- 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 packet of Splenda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
Pour the ingredients into the prepped bowl and bake for 20 minutes, until firm.
I did not broil it like the original recipe suggests because I was hungry and it smelled delicious, but I’m sure that would be an awesome touch! I also used Splenda to sweeten it so that I could keep the PointsPlus low, but you could substitute your favorite sweetener.
Speaking of PointsPlus, let’s chat about that. Mine came to 4 PointsPlus which I was really happy with. In the past I had added some mini chocolate chips which were a nice addition but raised the PointsPlus more than I really wanted. And like I said, this kept me full for quite some time. I knew that I was going to have a latte later in the morning, so it was nice that this breakfast was filling but low in Points.
What is your favorite way to use pumpkin in the fall? I still have some left over and need more ideas!
Add this to Pinterest HERE!
Yes! Now THIS is the kind of weigh in that I needed! Hooooooray!!!!
Ok…..now that that is out of my system, let’s chat numbers.
Today’s (epic) weigh in showed a loss of FOUR POINT FOUR POUNDS! Boom. That brings my total back to 57 pounds lost! Last weeks crazy gain (+3.8) had me suspicious of water weight leftover from my sister’s wedding, but I can never be 100% sure. I have been really on point with tracking this week so I’m sure that helped the situation. Either way, I’m happy.
Coming up this week….tomorrow is my first scheduled run! It has gotten mighty cold here in Chicago, especially in the mornings, so I’m thinking I may try a treadmill run. I haven’t ever run on the treadmill but we have one in the basement of our condo so I might as well give it a try. I really wanted to focus on running on the pavement because I heard it was so much harder than the treadmill. But at this point, I just need to get moving.
Also coming up this week is an overnight with friends out of town. It will be great to get out of the city and spend some quality time with my girlfriends. Can’t wait!
In not so great news (for me at least), Jeremiah leaves for Hawaii on Monday! Stinker! He’s going for work, so he actually won’t have tooooo much fun….but still! I am completely out of PTO so I won’t be able to join him. I’m really excited for him though as this is his 50th state! How cool is that?!?! I’m pretty far behind him in that race with only about 37 states.
Anyway, him being gone for 12 days means that I’ll be on my own for most meals. Historically, I don’t do very well with this. But I’m going to be taking advantage of my school’s dining room which should help a bit. I also plan to do a grocery shopping trip and plan out the meals that I’m going to eat ahead of time. I’m going to put my new WW Simply Solo cookbook to use as well!
Ok, I think that is enough rambling from me for now. Hope you all are having a fantastic week! And if you also do WIW, I hope it went well!
Ok, so the photo looks terrible, but it was so delicious, I promise! Yesterday I got a little creative with my morning omelette and it was so tasty I had to have it again today!
I had some extra zucchinis in my fridge and was trying to think of a new way to eat them. I’ve really been trying to get more fruits and vegetables in my diet and if I start off strong in the morning, its much easier to follow the rest of the day. Anyway, I’m super speedy with my omelettes so I didn’t want a lot of prep time. So, instead of chopping the zucchini, I julienned it! I have this peeler and really love it. I used about half of a small zucchini for each omelette.
As for cooking it, I heat up a small omelette skillet (I have this one and adore it). I then add a quick spray of coconut oil, the zucchini “noodles”, and some freeze dried onions and let them all cook down a bit.
While they are cooking, I mix together one egg and two egg whites with some salt, pepper and a splash of almond milk. I also take the time here to heat up two turkey sausage links in the microwave. When the zucchini is nice and tender I pour the eggs over the top and start those cooking. After they start to set I add in the chopped up turkey sausage and crumble 1 ounce of goat cheese on top. I let them cook for a little bit more before folding over the omelette, letting it cook, flipping it over again, and serving!
I love that I can have this whole delicious meal ready in about 15 minutes. And I love it even more because I only have to dirty one pan, a bowl, and a plate!
PointsPlus wise it came out to be 7 PointsPlus for the whole omelette. Obviously that will vary if you use different products or amounts. I love that this was chock full of protein and had some veggies as well as dairy, two things that I struggle with. It definitely kept me full all morning so I was happy!
Have you tried something new in your eggs that was a surprise hit? I’m always looking for new omelette ideas!
I’m so sorry that I have been such a bad blogger. I can’t even begin to describe the craziness of my life the past three weeks. It has been nuts.
First, I was jetlagged from Greece (woof!). Then we had a hectic week of prep for my sister’s wedding. Then the wedding weekend (!!) and finally an education conference where I had to stay at my parents’ house for a couple days. To add to the chaos, the week before the wedding my dad ended up being admitted to the hospital while out of state for what we thought was heart issues. Luckily he is fine and was doing much better in time for the wedding.
The wedding was fantastic! I was the coordinator and everything went very smoothly, just the way I like it! The party was a blast and there was lots of amazing food. I had a couple observations during the weekend that related to my weight and Weight Watchers. First, I didn’t track. I honestly didn’t have time to. And I did enjoy a few (or more) of the delicious homemade pastries (see below for the epic amount of sweets we had!).
But, I had some serious NSVs (non scale victories) during the weekend. First, I liked the way I looked in the dress (see below). I wore spanx for the first time and hated them, but they did a great job of smoothing everything down. Second, I Greek danced. Now, I used to Greek dance with a group and loved it. But I gained so much weight that I no longer could dance like I had in the past. (And I used to be really really good!) I would get too winded and the footwork was too difficult. Now, about fifty pounds lighter, I was able to do some serious dancing! I even was able to do the super tricky steps that I couldn’t do when I was heavier. It was such a rush and I was smiling the whole time I was dancing. So. Much. Fun!
So, the weekend was fantastic. It was wonderful to see so many family and friends and to see my little sister so happy! Oh, and I made it through my MOH speech, even if I did cry through most of it.
Unfortunately, the weigh in following the event was no bueno. I gained 3.8 pounds from the wedding weekend. YIKES. My previous two weigh ins had been terrible as well. I was up 4.4 after our vacation and another 1.2 the next week. That is a total of 9.4 pounds gained. NOT. COOL.
Well, this morning I woke up and checked my horoscope and it was just the kick in the butt that I needed. I don’t really put much weight in horoscopes but I thought this was very appropriate.
So I’m happy to let you all know that I’m back on track. I had a fantastic breakfast and a pretty good lunch. I have been much better about tracking the past few days (being very honest with myself and the tracker!). I also rearranged my work schedule so that I can run twice a week and go to a class once a week at the gym. I feel like running two mornings a week is a good place to start. And if I can’t make the class then I want to run once on the weekend as well. I loved how I felt when I was doing C25K and I need to get back there.
OK…..that is all for now. Let’s do this!!