Sunday, February 19, 2012

Start of week 8, junk food substitutions, happiness, spring, and the scale

I think I need to stop weighing myself. It's really aggravating! I've weighed myself every day for quite a long time, and part of me likes to do that (as opposed to once a week, so I can notice fluctuations so if I happen to weigh in on Sunday and I'm appalled, I can sort of know if it's a fluke or not.) I know a lot of people have said that they just stopped weighing themselves, or did it very infrequently (like once a month) and that it was quite "freeing". And I know, logically, that I need to be focusing on how I feel, how my clothes fit, my energy level, etc. rather than a stupid number. I know all that. But it's hard to let go! 

Two days ago, for example, I was down another pound and thrilled - I weighed in this morning with a gain of over 2 pounds. Which I know is completely NORMAL… but still somewhat aggravating. I know I've mentioned that I use SparkPeople for all my food/exercise/weight tracking, and SP sets a "goal line" for you based on how much weight you want to lose in a time period, and I am now above that line (meaning, I am not on track to reach my goal in the time period that I want.) Anyway, again, I know this isn't a big deal. It's easy to get obsessive, isn't it?

Anyhow, we'll see if I can let go of the scale. Or at least make me stop caring about it. 

Eating-wise I did pretty well week 7 except for Friday. Stuck to my menu plan completely. But Friday, ugh. I hang out with my dad on Fridays and I always get a Jimmy John's vegetarian sub (high fat and high cal but I make sure it fits into my calorie goals for the day) but then I always end up having a drink or two and my dad doesn't exactly eat healthily… so i ended up eating a good handful of M&Ms he'd bought(and I'm not even really a huge fan of milk chocolate so I'm surprised, but you know) and, anyway, that might explain the gain (salt + alcohol + chocolate… hmm.)

Stuck to my workout plan almost perfectly, except that I ended up having to take a rest day on one of the days that I planned to do a long workout because I was just so unbelievably sore. I had another rest day planned for Friday since, again, I hang out with my dad, but I got to leave work early (I'm hourly and had worked late a couple days that week) so I played around on the Wii Fit for a half hour. Didn't burn many calories (180, according to my heart rate monitor) but at least it's something. 

Anyway, here's my menu plan for week 8:

Veggie sandwich (mini kaiser roll with with reduced-fat swiss, avocado, alfalfa sprouts, cucumber, lettuce, tomato, and light mayo) with a side of baby carrots

Blackened tilapia baja tacos with avocado and tomato with a side of broccoli (this is a Cooking Light recipe. I made it once ages ago, but I had a TERRIBLE pan and the fish stuck horribly, but i figured I should try it again as I am trying to eat more fish - I'm not a huge fan but I do like blackened, mild-flavored fish!)

Bruschetta-stuffed portobello mushrooms (a SparkPeople recipe  I haven't made before)


Chicken Floss Curry w/ Roasted Vegetables (from Crepes of Wrath - haven't made this one before)


Jimmy John's vegetarian sub

Hmm, what else…there was a discussion on SparkPeople the other day about good substitutes for junk food. I thought I'd share one of my favorites. (Don't worry, I'm not lucky enough to get paid plugging products ;)) I'm really in love with the Food Should Taste Good brand of tortilla chips. Now, I realize this is still junk food. But it really, really helps when I want something salty/crunchy. I generally don't crave sweets too much - I keep a bar of 70% dark chocolate around and eat a square of it when I want, but I'm generally able to control myself - but salty snacks are usually what I crave. I've found these chips at a couple major grocery stores around here though the flavors are pretty limited. I've tried the multigrain (like them a lot - extra crunch from flaxseeds), The Works (I didn't like these, there is some type of spice in there that I don't care for - tarragon maybe?) and the Sweet Potato. The Sweet Potato are by far my favorite. It's a good thing I have a food scale because I think I would eat the whole bag in one sitting if I didn't properly measure out my portions. And there are only six ingredients! 

On occasion I make my own tortilla chips. I get just plain corn tortillas (but you gotta read the ingredients list - some have nothing but corn and lime juice and water, but others have tons of ridiculous stuff in them) and cut them up, spray with olive oil (I have a Misto) and bake them. I usually use these as a base for nachos (beans, tomatoes, avocado, and cheese usually.) 

 I also like air-popped popcorn. It would be super cheap to make my own, but I'm lazy and don't want to get a special popper; Trader Joe's sells it in bags and it's super addictive. Their popcorn with olive oil is incredible (high-calorie for popcorn, but delicious.)

I mentioned dark chocolate; I also have a weakness for Trader Joe's espresso pillows (chocolate-covered coffee beans… omg.) 

I'm really, really looking forward to spring. I have noticed myself getting a LOT happier as of the last week or so… the sun has been out and it's been warming up. I live in Wisconsin, so I know better than to think that spring is coming really soon - it really doesn't feel like spring until May here… but still excited. I'm hoping to grow some herbs on my patio, as I can never understand why they are so expensive in the store. 

Other good news is that my job has changed somewhat. We're in a pretty big state of transition. I think I've whined about my job quite a bit in here - it really has been a gigantic stressor in my life that has made me unhappy for quite a long time, but I didn't want to quit - mainly because it took me ten months to find this job, and I've only been there a year and a half, and I really liked my coworkers. Also, with my anxiety, starting a new job is horrifying. Plus, for my degree (a BA in psychology) and for working at a non-profit, I get paid enough to live fairly comfortably - I don't buy anything luxurious, but I have enough for the basics, and enough to buy high-quality food (this is where I splurge the most, I think.) Anyway, we've hired a couple people and I actually get my own office for the first time ever (well, I do share it, but not being on the front lines is an amazing feeling.) For the first time at work, I feel a lot calmer, and I'm so far liking my job duties. I'm still missing my old coworkers like crazy (they moved us from my small, loving office to our main, huge building) but I'm no longer feeling like I have to quit this job in order to just stay sane. It's still going to be chaotic, but I'm hoping the change in my job duties will allow me to stay at this job longer than I anticipated. 

I'm going to lay down and watch a little bit of TV - I did my hardest workout today (my hour-long step aerobics which kicks my ass every single time) and now I'm EXHAUSTED! Worth the 687 calories I burned. It was extra-hard today, not sure why… I really felt like I was going to puke a couple times… TMI, sorry. 

I just checked the weather and it's 42 degrees outside… that is downright balmy for Madison! I should probably try to get outside today for longer than just going to the clubhouse to check my mail.a

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