Since starting this new journey a fortnight ago, I'm definitely so much more conscious of the habits I'm trying to make second nature in my life. I'm confident I'm well read [& thirsty for more!] & know what I should be aiming for. I've done this over & over again. I know I get unglued after I've had success. I get comfortable, I revert back to old habits & I let the the stressors get to me. I cave on letting the bad habits become part of the everyday living and the wheels start falling off, a few grams here, a few hundred grams there...
This time, I'm finding it easier to just focus on one or two things a week rather than do everything perfectly from day dot & fail. Slowly but surely so far. Building blocks.
You'd think by my age many of these lessons would have been learned or second nature already. But that's not necessarily human nature. Adults all over the world haven't yet found how to balance alcohol, give up cigarettes, work out budgets, balance work/home/life balance, keep tidy houses, manage household stuff to avoid being subjects of hoarding Tv shows, spend quality time with children to meet their needs, maintain discipline in homes so children have manners, keep love alive in their marriages, send out birthday cards & gifts in the post to arrive on time..... Do I need to go on?
I am not sure I know anyone, who balances everything perfectly & stays sane. Ok maybe if there's a support team you could do it but not everyone has one of those. But making health a priority every day for ourselves, every week, by ourselves, to be mindful about life, family, health, home & making good choices the majority of the time, is about as good enough as it should be to live well & have a few indulgences too.
So how am I doing so far?
Being a non-tea/coffee/alcohol/soft drink drinker and rarely a drinker of juice or cordial the only thing I had to do in our first week was make sure I was getting the water thing happening as a habit every day. I'm pleased to say that was pretty easy. Keeping a regular stock of ice, lemons & limes has helped this enormously.
I bought one of those $2 lemon storage containers from KMart and that helps me avoid wastage. Every day when I come down for breakfast, I think to myself, I can't eat breakfast without having a glass of water either before or with the meal. Once I have my glass in hand it usually follows me around for the rest of the day. In the evening once the kids are in bed, I usually go through another 1.25L soda water with ice, lemon & lime also. That easily takes me uo to quota. So the water department is good.
When I instagrammed the image above of my lemon & lime today in the container [it has a lid & is shaped like a large lemon if you haven't seen them before], one of my friends commented on how she cuts her lemons & limes into slices & freezes them. What a positively fabulous idea! I am doing this before bed tonight so I can enjoy a tangy tarty frozen fruity slices in my morning water. Brilliant. Thank you Sue!
I kicked off my 52 weeks journey with a shoulder injury which radiated through my back & around my chest making me feel like I was having a heart attack. Fabulous timing. For over a week I slept few hours at night because I was so uncomfortable. And each morning trying to sit up from bed, I'd be doing girly screams and spilling tears. That moment each day for a week was the worst. I spent my days busy with the kids in holiday mode, napping because of lack of sleep & not exercising very much at all.
My chiropractor came back to work on on the 7th and luckily Jeff had an appointment that first day which I stole! He did lots of work on my shoulder and the next two days were a bit better. I saw him again a few days later, got my shoulder strapped and its been getting consistently better since. Strapping is now off & I'm delighted I'm sleeping better & moving better & have started exercising again.
The kids and I have been doing some beach walks & exploring different jettys since then & its been great. I have a fabulous proper adult skipping rope that I'm going to start using tomorrow & I've got some exercise DVD's that I plan to do with the kids to break up the holiday days at home. The kids and I have also been dancing! So its been a slow start. But I listened to my body & took the time to heal my shoulder and now I'm moving again. AND I'm very encouraged by my 2.2kg weight loss over the last fortnight. Slow & steady....
I took a bit of extra time with meals this past week. The week started with a meal plan, looking at what I had already on hand in the fridge & the freezer & made sure all our choices were healthy ones. Some of them I even healthied up a bit more. I've also made sure we have had lots of snackage this week in the form of celery, tomatoes, nuts, berries, kiwi etc. Evening snacking has been an issue & I hope to let it go but in the meantime better snacks is the answer in the short term.
I involved my Charlotte in the meal planning this week as she's not only my most adventurous little foodie but she's also the fussiest. She's alot like me. She's likes bang on flavour and she likes to be able to see clearly what she is eating.
Having Charlotte on board to set this weeks menu was great and I'll continue to do that. Mind you, even though we shook hands on her being happy with the menu & she promised there would be no grumbles at dinner time, we still had grumbles LOL That's kids for you!
But that is balanced with the others expressing their undying love for me & my cooking and either telling me they just ate 'the best meal ever' [that would be Chelsea's comment most nights of the week, cutie], or sweet Georgie telling me I should be on Masterchef. Cough cough! Of course I wouldn't make it through to the first round.
Nothing like having your own personal cheer squad & fan club!
And now the bread dilemma!
I'm actively wanting to reduce starchy processed carbs while I'm wanting to drop kilos and have them very little, if at all, long term unless they are the right sort. And it can be a bit tricky. I'm talking bread, pasta, rice, processed crackers, wraps etc. I've made positive moves in the right direction over the last few years switching to wholegrain, seedy & wholemeal breads, gluten free pastas and brown rice. Or so I thought.
According to some sources, brown rice is fine and I would only add it to my meal plan once per week anyway. I am not concerned about that as I love it with vegetables & a little egg which is a good source of protein and overall a good evening meal. It also helps to clear out the veggie crisper in the fridge at the end of the week to minimise wastage. You can find my recipe for that dish here.
Pasta I can give up easy. Done, its not something I've ever craved. In the future when I get around to it, I know you can make your own pasta out of all sorts of healthy things, and I will give that a try. But I'm not busting to put it on the menu.
But the other stuff isn't quite as straightforward.
In my past efforts to 'diet' I've minimised bread. I've spaced out my carb eating by avoiding bread at lunch & then having a wrap at dinner, usually with chicken & salad. Here's my tandoori version here. Or at lunch I've toasted a wrap in the oven & made my own tortilla chips to have with a tuna salsa and then included no carbs for dinner. Recipe here.
Calorie wise these are still great options & in all honesty I will still include them in my meal plan for the moment. Who doesn't love a bit of crunch with fresh home made salsa or the delicious mix of veggies or salad in a little parcel or wrap? Yum! BUT...... many of these processed products contain wheat flour, some sugars and bad oils. Research says those things are not doing humans any favours. Because they are in small quantities and spread out over the week minimising actual bread bread, I'm still including them only until I can improve on the wrap!
As it happens, I have just come across a recipe for making a healthy bread which I am really excited about. I hope to make it this week and see if I can make it into flattened breads to use as wraps, tortilla chips & pizza bases too. I'll share my experimenting soon! I hope it works out as its usually the carbs that start to creep back into my diet once I relax a bit. They are the bit I miss most. If I can find a healthy afforable alternative I will be very happy about that.
Meanwhile, I am seeking out meal options that don't contain those processed carbs at all. My friend Janelle posted a gorgeous omelette picture on Instagram this week that literally made me want to start eating my iPhone! I've never been a fan of eggs but over the last few months I've trained myself to eat them. Adding a raw egg to a smoothie has never bothered me but eating a poached egg or runny baked egg - makes me feel sick just looking at those sort of meals. Terrible right?
Anyway, I started with the egg nets, whisking the eggs, adding a little seasoning and I loved them. So after seeing Janelles omelette I thought I would give it a try.
I've always loved my own mountain bread quiche recipe too & this is just a variation on that without the starchy carbs.
I've got two versions I think I'll enjoy. This one above was my actual breakfast this morning, well actually brunch by the time I made it. Delish.
- 2 eggs whisked
- 3 short cut bacon cheeks trimmed, no white stuff
- 3 tiny baby bocconcini's ripped up & scattered
- 1 tspn parmesan finely grated
- cherry tomatoes quartered
- pinch of chia, Murray River salt & cracked pepper
- tiny bit of macadamia oil so eggs didn't stick to the pan
Other version will be more of a main meal [lunch or dinner] option I think. Basically just replacing bacon, tomato & coriander with spinach & other vegetables; broccoli, peas, beans, asparagus etc. I'll share that another time.
This week, I'll start up a carb-less Pinterest inspiration board and I for one hope to add lots of new yummy meals to our weekly rotation over time. I love those stirfry veg/chicken meals served in lettuce cups, don't you? I will be most definitely having that this week. Lettuce is a great alternative for a wrap & still fun to eat!
So how have you been going?
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