Monday, February 1, 2016

Making Better Choices - Update

I'm about a month into my making better choices plan for this year, and I wanted to give a little update on how I'm doing with this.  Overall, it was a good month, and I am pretty pleased with most of my choices.  I wasn't perfect, but I'd definitely give myself a "shows improvement" on my imaginary report card.

For example, I managed to hold it together for most of the meals on our annual racecation to Houston with our running peeps.  On Friday, I ate my regular yogurt breakfast in the car on the drive there, and for lunch I ordered a salad at the Mexican restaurant, instead of the cheese enchiladas, rice and beans that I've ordered far too often.  Yes, I had some chips and salsa, but not a lot, so I was happy with that.  And for dinner, I had two pieces of pizza...unremarkable except that I have been known to plow through way more than that at one sitting.  The following day I had one and a half breakfast tacos and some chocolate milk, and then an iced latte in the afternoon, followed by lasagna and bread for dinner (half marathon carb loading, not ashamed of that at all).  Now, there was an Italian cream cake that was shared and the icing was delicious and I had more bites than I should have, but hey - progress, not perfection, right?  The last day there, after the race, I had most of a biscuit, a little gravy, and some chocolate milk, and later on, half a turkey burger, some fries, and a chocolate milkshake...and that was on the day I ran a half marathon.  All food options are on the table after doing that; unfortunately, my stomach usually doesn't recover enough to want to eat much.

The remainder of the month was good.  I cooked more dinners - mostly our easy meals, like black bean chipotle veggie burgers, roasted broccoli, and a chilled grain salad:
I buy this at Sam's Club - it's easy to throw together and tastes great.

I also made soup...my old standby of taco soup, topped with a handful of tortilla chips, was a filling meal that appeared several times on the menu, and, thanks to my running buddy Cary, I discovered the Skinny Taste website and made her Turkey Sausage, Kale and White Bean soup:
I used hot Italian turkey sausage and this turned out so good, plus it had a nice kick!

I've got many more soup recipes from that website bookmarked and plan on making them this month.  And in the making better choices genre, I wanted pizza one night, but instead of ordering one for delivery, I bought a Boboli crust and made my own - it was exactly what I was craving, plus I controlled the amount of cheese and toppings, which made it a better choice.

I usually don't eat a lot for lunch, but I do need something.  I ended up going with whatever looked good at the grocery store - one week, I bought some black bean hummus and baby carrots, and that was what I ate for lunch:
Spicy and filling!  Although I'm sure it would have been fabulous with tortilla chips, I made myself eat it with baby carrots...and I didn't die.  

Another week, the Granny Smith apples at the grocery store called my name, so that was my lunch for the week - a really big apple, sliced up, with some peanut butter:
I originally bought the little packs of peanut butter for Jeff, for when he travels, but they made the perfect dipping cup and the right portion for my lunch, so he's out of luck when it comes to travel peanut butter now!

I deliberately did not buy any Veggie Straws this month, because I felt like I was kind of overdoing it with junk carbs over the last couple of months.  Again, I didn't die.

The last thing that I needed to work on was to curtail the treats.  I wanted to limit them to a once per week thing, and I will admit that there were a couple times when I would have jumped at the offer of going out to DQ for a dipped cone, or to Blue Baker for a cookie, but I did really well with restraint in this department (I'm not counting the goodies that the baker gives us at BB on Saturday mornings - those are bonus treats that come with running).  I was having a really bad bout of SI joint pain a week ago and went to the doctor for that; afterward, when Jeff and I walked into Target to pick up a prescription for pain meds, he asked me if I needed anything else, and you know, I needed a Heath bar really badly.  So I had one in the store, while we waited for the pharmacist; what can I say...sometimes chocolate is curative.

And now, it's February - month two of my year of making better choices is happening!

21 comments:

  1. I think we all like treats! I used to feel that it's just me lol
    I love PB anf apples they are such a good combo!

    Wishing you an even better February!

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    1. Thanks - I go through stages where PB and apples just hit the spot, and right now, I'm happily in that stage. :)

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  2. Thanks for the links to the Skinnytaste website and her recipes.

    Glad your year of making better choices is going well.

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    1. I hope you find some good recipes at Skinnytaste! She's got a lot of yummy-sounding meals over there.

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  3. Who knew you didn't know about Skinny Taste? I have followed her blog for years! You really do eat a light lunch - an apple and PB would be a snack for me. Hmmmmm maybe I need to reconsider that lol!

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    1. Well, when you aren't all that interested in cooking, those websites get passed over real quick, LOL!

      I do eat a light lunch; if I have much more, then I'm not hungry for dinner until too late in the evening for me.

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  4. Cooking Shelley? Girl you are really changing your habits. Good for you!

    I believe one shouldn't limit everything but take a treat every now and then. Makes it easier to make healthy choices on the other days.

    You are doing great!

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    1. Who IS this person standing at a stove, recipe in hand (well, on screen)?!! ;)

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  5. I have been eye balling a kale, sausage and white bean soup recipe myself. Now I might have to try it with turkey sausage instead of the regular kind.

    You've done great with your choices keep it up!!

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    1. We thought it tasted great with the turkey sausage. The only thing I'd do differently would be to chop up the kale a little finer - the recipe said "rough chop" but it made for some large pieces in the soup.

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  6. Mmmm. Thank goodness I was eating breakfast while reading about all the yummy foods! That grain salad looks interesting--I'll have to see if they have something similar at Costco.

    I have all the fixings for taco soup in the fridge--GMTA!!

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  7. I would like to learn what meals you make on a weekly basis. I am trying to help my husband with his weight loss plan and I feel a lot of it depend on meals and what I prepare for him. We both need (or don't need) very different things in our diet and it's so hard to prepare meals for both of us.

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  8. Skinnytaste is a fantastic website!!! yay on all your good choices!!!!

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  9. Sounds like a great month! And yes, sometimes I just need a Heath bar, too. My favorite!

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  10. Isn't it insidious how bigger portions and frequent treats can just slip in? Sounds like you've made some great progress on awareness and choices this month, way to go!
    Sometimes I just crave pizza ... but now I use sandwich thins and top with either tomato/basil sauce or pesto, then other toppings, of course. Like you, having control over the toppings really helps me feed the craving monster without too big of an unhealthy hit.

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  11. Great job! I found Skinny Taste last year and she has a lot of stuff. The spinach lasagna roll ups are really good. You should try those. It's nice to have individually portioned pasta.

    I have a snacking issue in the afternoons, so I need to figure that out.

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  12. Sounds like your making great choices! Way to go! :)

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  13. I recently discovered yummly for recipes as well. You plug in what you have and it spits out a few ideas.

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