I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We enjoyed a wonderful day with family. As I mentioned in a previous blog I am not a huge fan of the traditional Thanksgiving meal. So this year in order to try and keep the calories down I tried some new recipes. First thing I did in the morning was to start my day with a protein shake and my vitamins. This gave me energy to cook a wonderful meal for my family. We did have the traditional turkey, mashed potatoes, and green bean casserole, but I also chose to make some roasted Brussels sprouts. I would have to say these were my favorite part of the whole meal!
For dessert I made Michelle’s Pumpkin Pie. (recipe in previous post) I knew this recipe would not be exactly like a traditional pumpkin pie but I did not expect the texture of the pie filling to be so different. It had more of a soufflé texture. One thing I would do differently next time is to add a little more stevia as the pie was not very sweet. Overall it received the following reaction from the family: 2 thumbs up, 2 thumbs down, and one “I’m not eating that” vote. :)
Along with trying to watch my calorie intake I was able to get out and take a nice long walk while the turkey was in the oven. It was a bit chilly but so far we have no snow so it made for an enjoyable walk.
I hope everyone had a very healthy and happy Thanksgiving. Until next week here’s to your health and happiness.
WOW, it is hard to believe we are almost to Thanksgiving, and right around the corner will be Christmas! I don’t know about you but this is always a festive time for me and my family. I love getting together with friends and family and celebrating the holidays. One thing I know for sure is there is always a LOT of food at these gatherings.
With my “Quest to Be My Best” underway this does have me a little concerned. Seriously, who does not love Thanksgiving pies and Christmas cookies? Knowing that I cannot go “cold turkey” on all these delightful treats I have decided to try and find some healthier alternatives to these wonderful dishes.
For me Thanksgiving dinner is really not a problem, I much prefer cold turkey sandwiches to the traditional feast, but Pumpkin pie on the other hand is a whole different story. So I went in search of a healthier alternative to making my traditional pumpkin pie this year and have found one that sounds delicious and worth trying.
Michelle’s Healthy Pumpkin Pie
I am pretty excited to try this out as one slice has only 36 calories. A traditional recipe has anywhere from 150-325 calories per slice.
Another plan for all of these festive meals is to add more vegetables to the menu. I love Brussel sprouts and will definitely be adding roasted Brussel sprouts to the menu. These are very easy to make. Simply take sprouts, a little olive oil, salt, and pepper, toss and roast. Simple yet ooohhh so yummy!
And how could you have Thanksgiving dinner without mashed potatoes and gravy. For those who do not like mashed potatoes or are looking for a healthier alternative try mashing some sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes are relatively low in calories and have no fat. They are rich in beta-carotene and having five times the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin A in one sweet potato, as well as loaded with potassium. These nutrients help to protect against heart attack and stroke. The potassium helps maintain fluid and electrolyte balance in the body cells, and can help with maintaining normal heart function and blood pressure.
Feel free to leave a comment with some traditional dishes you have at your meals that are great healthy alternatives.
The “Quest to be My Best” is now into the second month and I am excited with the changes to both my mind and body. I have noticed some of my clothes are fitting a little better and some days I have a lot of energy. My last challenge to the journey however is the whole daylight savings time change. It really messed with my internal clock. Normally I get up at 5:30 each morning to start my exercise routine but with daylight savings my body clock has me waking up between 4:00 and 4:30 each morning. Of course I know I can just go back to sleep for a while but of course all I do is lay there with my mind running thinking about the coming day. So, I have decided that I might as well get up and get going with the day. The problem with this decision is by early evening I am falling asleep. Challenge to take on this week: Figure out how to readjust my schedule so I get enough sleep and still wake-up in time for my daily exercises.
Another item I have started doing on this journey is to make meal plans for the week. I have found if I already have something planned for dinner when I get home it is much easier to resist the urge to choose a less healthy option. This also helps keep me from snacking while dinner is getting ready. Changing the family meal plan and coming up with meals that are healthy and ones we enjoy has been a little challenging, so if anyone has some good, healthy recipes please feel free to post them I would appreciate your suggestions and I know others would benefit from them too.
My goal for each month was to lose 8 pounds. I am happy to report that I have LOST 7 POUNDS this month. Along with the weight-loss I am excited about the other personal changes I have accomplished so far. Well here’s to another successful , healthy month.
“I’m just not feeling it. “
This is all I can say when I hear others talk about that so called “high” you get when exercising. Not so sure I know what they mean. The only feeling I get on the elliptical at 5:30 in the morning is how good my pillow would feel.
Web MD states “Through the blood, sweat, and tears, many runners report that their favorite trick -- and part of the reason they wake morning after morning to pound the pavement -- is what is referred to as runner's high.” Ok, so maybe you would not call what I am doing as “pounding the pavement or running” but it is still exercise. I know it is still early in this journey but I am one that prefers instant gratification. It sure would be nice to at least feel something besides dizziness as a result of my lack of oxygen! ;)
I have been keeping track of my steps each day and some days are certainly better than others. My goal of course is the 10,000 steps, but since I know this does not always happen I try to get at least 500-1,000 steps more than I did the previous day. On average I do generally hit 7,000 or more each day.
Another thing I have started to do is “Burst Exercising”. This is exercising in short bursts, also known as high-intensity interval training or HIIT, it alternates short periods of fast intense exercise with longer periods of slower and less intense exercise. Many athletes like burst training because it burns fat efficiently, increases endurance and strength, and reduces your exercise time. Burst training also stimulates the production of human growth hormone. The human growth hormone reduces the effects of aging, builds new muscle and bone, helps you sleep better, and increases your energy levels and metabolism.
Here is how it works. First thing I do is get my stopwatch ready on my phone; then I warm up a bit and hit the start button on the stopwatch; when you get to 20 seconds you go as fast as you can until it hits 40 seconds. At 40 seconds you go slowly until it reaches 1 minute. At one minute you go again as fast as you can for other 20 seconds; then slow for 20 seconds and continue alternating every 20 seconds of slow work time doing this for 6 minutes. I did not think this would really do much, but let me tell you, it is not as easy as it sounds. It certainly can cause you to work up a sweat.
Truth be told…this journey has not been easy so far. Some days are certainly better than others. I am beginning to realize this is a battle of the mind more than it is about making physical changes. My mind definitely has the power to make it a good day or a bad one. Since being on this journey I do know gaining confidence and power over my thinking is something that cannot be accomplished overnight. So as they say onward and upward (well in losing weight I am going with downward).
I am forty-seven years old and overweight. Food is where I find comfort - happy or sad…it does not matter. What I really want is to learn how to use my own strength and confidence to handle situations, not food! I have decided to make a commitment, a commitment to being healthy! Join me in this journey to good health, as I blog about my successes and struggles along the way. Each week I will share with you my ups and downs, recipes, healthy lifestyle tips, workout ideas and more. Join me on my “Quest to be the Best.”