Tag Archives: rice

Out with the Old

After all the sugar and junk food I consumed this weekend, I was determined to get back on track as soon as possible. And I believe I succeeded. :)

For breakfast, I created a deliciously filling (and nutritious) dish. I have been craving rice pudding for a while. I have talked before about the fact that I detest oatmeal. Most mornings I will eat eggs and bacon for breakfast. As much as I love that breakfast, it doesn’t fill me up for very long . . . plus, it can get boring after a while. So I decided to make a dish out of brown rice that was sure to be nutritious and filling.

Rice Pudding (serves 1)

1 cup cooked brown rice
3/4 cup skim milk (or milk of your choice)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/4 c. chopped walnuts
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
dash of vanilla extract

Mix all ingredients together and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook on low (stirring frequently) until thick and creamy, about 5-7 minutes.

My husband went to get a haircut this morning and on his way back, he surprised me with a Starbucks Gingerbread Latte. How sweet is that? I didn’t even think they would have them past Christmas. And he knows exactly how I like it, which shows he has been paying attention. ;)

After breakfast (which filled me up for hours), my husband and I decided that the house was in desperate need of cleaning. I am so glad that my husband and I don’t have to be at work again until next Monday. Today, we declared it “cleaning day.”

We have gone through every single room and every single drawer. We made a trash pile and a donate pile. Anything that I know I did not use or need, I put in one of those piles.

 

This is the donate pile!

 

I feel like this cleaning was a great way to declutter not only my house, but my life. Believe it or not, I have clothes that are too big or too small. I decided to make it my mission to only keep clothes that actually fit.

These are pants that are a size 9. At one time, these were my favorite pants. However, I haven’t been able to fit into them in roughly five years. I am trying to lose weight, so I kept them for the occasion when I would fit into them again. Then I realized that these pants were also a reminder. They were a reminder of a time when I lost weight by eating under 1000 calories a day and exercising constantly. Do I really need a reminder of that time in my life?

Hopefully, there will come a time when I am a size 9 again. But if (and when) that time comes, I will buy new pants that are a symbol of my new healthy lifestyle.

I had breakfast around 10:00, so I didn’t actually get hungry until after 2:00. I was also quite busy cleaning. Since I wasn’t starving, I still had to force myself to eat something. I ended up with a simple plate of whole wheat pasta, some pasta sauce, and cooked chicken.

I must have been hungrier than I thought because I ate every bite!

The rest of the afternoon was spent with more cleaning. Corey had plans to have dinner with a friend, so I used that time to work out, enjoy watching TV shows (like American Dad) that he doesn’t like, and of course . . . more cleaning. I actually tried to tell myself that as a “reward” for cleaning, I didn’t have to work out. Every time I tried to make that excuse, I rejected it.

My body was craving a work out and cleaning just didn’t cut it. I hadn’t done a strenuous workout in about a week. If I made excuses why I didn’t have to work out today, I would do the same thing tomorrow . . . and the next day, and so on. Operation: Get Back on Track required some exercise, even if it wasn’t a full hour. I ended up working out for about 40 minutes, which made me feel great. I did a couple of Exercise TV On Demand workouts. I did Jillian Michaels’ Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism and Kim Kardashian’s Ab Sculpt workout. It was a first for the Kim Kardashian ab workout and I will definitely be doing it again. It was an awesome mix of cardio moved and floor work.

During our afternoon of cleaning, my husband and I made a big pot of chili. It simmered on the stove for roughly two hours. Everyone knows that the longer chili simmers, the better it tastes. After my workout, I had a big bowl of chili.

I also had a buttered piece of organic multigrain bread. The dinner was delicious!

Now it’s time to relax a little and finish up our cleaning. We are almost finished and we would like to get it done today so that we don’t have to worry about it for the rest of our break. Good night everyone!

Losing weight the cold way

Last night, I was watching TV and I saw something interesting on ABC news or dateline or one of those shows. There was an author (Tim Ferris, I believe) who stated that he believed people could lose weight in cold weather.

Breakfast: the LAST of my Pumpkin Pancakes :(

But he wasn’t just talking about any cold weather . . . he was talking about purposefully taking walks and exposing yourself to below freezing temperatures to speed up your metabolism. During the show, he and the reporter actually walked outside in below freezing weather without a coat. How crazy is that?

Delicious lunch: spinach salad with baked chicken strips, a hard boiled egg, half a green pepper, and some homemade Italian vinaigrette

During the interview, he also said that nutrionists and registered dieticiand are giving incorrect information. Apparently, the calories in and calories out formula is “wrong.”

I guess he got this idea from Michael Phelps, who eats about 12,000 calories a day. This guy believed that his ability to stay fit and toned was due to the fact that he swam in cool water. Maybe it was because he swims about eight hours a day?

Very filling dinner: brown rice, a hamburger patty that I cooked, some corn, and green beans that I roasted with olive oil and Cajun seasoning. I also added some ketchup and mustard to this bowl. :)

Now I have heard that if you’re colder your metabolism naturally speeds up. But this just seems like another “quick fix” to me. The man who was in the interview stated that he lost 30 pounds in 6 weeks. I’m not sure if the cold was the only factor, but I know that I don’t want to be freezing cold in order to lose weight.

What happened to just eating healthy and being more active?

What do you think of this idea? Do you think that weight loss is about thermodynamics and not about calories in vs. calories out?

He’s Back!!!

Okay, I’m going to make this a quick post. My husband is now home from his business trip and he’s ready to annoy spend time with me. :)

Breakfast started out with a meal of champions. I had a couple of eggs, some American cheese and I topped them with hot sauce. With the eggs, I had some a toasted pita with almond butter and Trader Joe’s pumpkin butter.

I was really surprised that my pumpkin butter has been in my cabinet since Saturday and I hadn’t opened it yet. Surprisingly, I was not super impressed with it. It was a little too spicy or something (meaning too much nutmeg) and I thought it could have used some extra sweetness or something. I will continue to eat it, but I’m not sure I will buy it again.

I went to work kind of early (for a Thursday anyway) and I was hungry by midmorning, so I had a snack of some Farmer’s Market fresh pineapple. Mmm . . . it was so fresh and so juicy. I love pineapple!

Lunch was some Trader Joe’s roasted turkey slices, hummus, and spinach on a whole wheat pita. I also may have put some hot sauce on it. I swear, I put that stuff on everything lately!

I have got to find another type of bread for my sandwiches. I don’t know what is up, but lately the pitas that I get at the store just fall apart. They are so flimsy! The pita starts breaking even before I begin to put my fillings in. Above is a pretty picture of the sandwich. Below is a picture that shows the broken parts of the pita.

These broken pitas make for a very messy lunch. Tasty, but messy.

An afternoon snack consisted of something that I haven’t had in a super long time . . . a Larabar!!! I was so thrilled to eat this. I am reintroducing dried fruits to my diet to see if they cause migraines. I know that nuts do not cause headaches (thank goodness), so I am eating some Larabars to see if dried fruit causes a reaction.

I had the Peanut Butter Cookie flavor. I don ‘t know how the people of Larabar gets their bars to taste so much like peanut butter cookies when the only ingredients are peanuts, dates and salt . . . but dammit, they taste awesome!

After work and picking up Callie from doggy daycare, I headed home. Callie and I both wanted a bit of exercise in the form of a jog (even though she was super tired from her day) and I had a great pre-workout snack of Peanut Butter Puffins.

several handfuls of these

Where have these things been all my life?? I adore the peanut butter flavor and they taste so much better than the original. I could get super addicted to these things!

Callie and I had an awesome jog and then I also did 30 minutes on the elliptical. So I did an hour of cardio today and I feel great . . . although my feet are a bit sore.

Does anyone have any ideas or links to direct me to for good stretches after running? I did stretch today (yay for me), but I usually feel as if I’m going blind and I’m not sure the proper stretches to do so that I stretch the muscles that I have used the most. If anyone has any ideas to help, that would be great.

Dinner came together quickly. I heated up the leftover Red Beans and Rice and I heated up some Canadian Farm organic frozen peas. So yummy, filling, and quick. My favorite!

Yes, I have everything mixed together in a crazy mess. For some reason, I can only eat certain veggies if they are mixed in with other things. Is anyone else like that? I felt pretty good about myself by eating a dish with beans, peas, and tomatoes. No one had to bribe me to eat my veggies today. Oh wait, are beans a vegetable? Maybe not . . . ;)

Now I must go because my husband is back from his business trip (yay!) and I am so happy to have him home. And he was so nice that he brought a sandwich and chicken chili from Jason’s Deli on his way home (my favorite!). How sweet is that? I know that I will be having a good lunch of leftovers at work this week. :)

Goals and Satisfying a Craving

Why is it that the rain just completely drains me of all energy?

It has been raining all day today, and since it was my day off I spent most of the day indoors, not doing a whole lot of anything. It felt so good.

Last week, I talked about how I got a physical and some blood work done for the first time ever. I finally got the results back (most of them anyway). Most of the numbers are pretty much normal, except for my good cholesterol, which is a little low. Also, my Vitamin D level seems to be low as well. The doctor said that could explain why I have been so tired. She prescribed me some Vitamin D and she advised me to start taking fish oil supplements to raise my good cholesterol.

Unfortunately, she told me that she “forgot” to get complete blood work on me that would determine whether I was anemic or not. So I had to drag myself out of the house in this nasty weather today in order to get my blood drawn. I actually had to wait 45 minutes for this. Ugh!

After the blood was drawn, I headed to Sam’s to pick up some vitamins. Seriously, I got enough vitamins to last for months! The bottles were huge, but it was a really good deal. My cabinet now resembles a pharmacy.

Yes, these are the vitamins that I must take (including my prescribed one). And yes, that is a prenatal multivitamin you see but, no I am not pregnant. :) I have heard that prenatal vitamins are the best for women to take because it gives women the nutrients they need more than other types of vitamins.

So now that I have my blood work done, I have a few goals for October and beyond (can’t believe October is just about over!).

1. Eat a healthy breakfast every day.


Yesterday’s breakfast: 2 eggs with cheese and hot sauce, half a whole wheat bagel with almond butter and jam

2. Eat more fruits and veggies.


Yesterday’s lunch: salad with hamburger patty, cheese, and homemade Italian vinaigrette

Snack for today: mashed avocado and hot sauce (served with unpictured tortilla chips)

3. Sweat (or exercise) 5 days a week.

Side note: It’s always nice to work out with a partner. ;)

6. Incorporate more strength training into my workouts. Speaking of which, I did Gina’s Bridal Bootcamp yesterday and WOW. Yes, I am already married but who doesn’t need a little boost to get nice and buff. My ENTIRE upper body is sore: biceps, triceps, even my back). It’s not the kind of sore that makes me never want to work out again or inhibits my daily activities. But my muscles are sore enough so that I do wince a little when I reach for stuff and I definitely feel that I got in a great workout. I can’t wait for the rest of the bootcamp workouts!

7. Cook more meals at home. I am all about indulging in moderation and I have always included about one meal a week at a restaurant just for a change of pace. But when Corey and I were going over the money, we discovered that we had gone over budget and we had also eaten out a LOT this month. I do try to make healthier decisions when I eat out (most of the time anyway), but let’s face it . . . the calorie counts are still too high. And I wonder why I have hit a plateau with my weight.

In honor of my new goal to cook more meals at home, I made a very tasty meal tonight. It would have been so easy to order in since Corey is out of town. But I want to stick with my goal and I was in the mood for some beans and rice.

Yes . . . beans and rice. For some reason, I have had a craving for a week or so. I googled a bunch of recipes, but I finally just made some changes to a couple different ones until I had one that sounded good. And boy, was it delicious! This is coming from someone who normally doesn’t even like beans. The amount of the spice was so perfect that, for once, I didn’t need to put hot sauce on it. The recipe is below. I can’t wait until I eat the leftovers. So good!

Red Beans and Rice (serves 2)

1/2 of a 15 oz. can reduced sodium dark red kidney beans, drained
1/2 of a 14 oz. can diced tomatoes and chiles, undrained
3 slices of bacon, fried and drained
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
Brown Rice, cooked

Mix the cooked bacon, undrained tomatoes, drained beans, and spices together. Simmer until heated through. Serve over cooked rice.

Seriously . . . how easy is that?? I did use only half a can because it was just me (and one more serving for leftovers of course). If you are cooking for more people, obviously you can use the whole cans of beans and tomatoes and adjust the spices accordingly.