I mentioned a few weeks ago that I fell off the wagon a bit with my nutrition. I really let stress and long hours at work become my excuse for eating poorly. Then, I climbed back on the wagon and started eating healthy again.
Well, sort of.
You see, I am really good at planning out healthy meals and snacks, then eating that. However, I am also really good about getting off track just enough to sabotage the earlier meal planning and workouts.
What do I mean?
Well, I will eat my Greek yogurt with berries and Stevia in the morning, my string cheese and apple as a snack, my Lean Cuisine for lunch, my edamame and berries in the afternoon and then a grilled chicken breast and veggies for dinner. But, I also eat the rest of the kid's grilled cheese, that birthday cake and the work birthday social, that 1/2 cookie from the cookie tray that a vendor dropped off at work, etc. Not horrible, but just enough. Seriously, I am not even hungry, but I still do this!
Ugh. Same old story, different day.
So, I decided that I needed to try something different. Last week, I had a nutritional consultation with Chiro #1 (remember him?). He did a metabolic rate test. And, I stood on a machine like this...
This machine gives a reading on all kinds of cool things - Total Body Water, Protein, osseous / non-osseous Minerals, Body Fat Mass, and Skeletal Muscle Mass. Cool, huh?
Based on all of the information, the doc determined the amount of calories (1,500) and water (100 oz per day) I need to intake daily in order to lose about 1.25 pounds per week. I don't really have much to lose (~10 lbs), but I would like to lower my body fat percentage (much lower!). The doc also took into account the type of workouts I am currently able to do. That was one issue I had - how the heck should you eat when you can't do any hard core cardio??? It's easy when you run 10 miles - hey, I get to eat a burger now! But when you only get to walk and do upper body strengthening...I'd venture to guess the burger is not a good idea. (Not that it was anyway!) The doc also asked me if there are things that I especially like (chocolate) or do not like to eat.
Later that same day, the doc sent me a very specific eating plan for the next 4 weeks. When I say "very specific", I mean that literally, I have a menu of what I should be eating for each meal and each snack. And I eat the same menu for 7 days straight. Now, it's not as bad as it sounds...there is a list of exchanges. So, if I am sick of talapia fillets, I can swap it out for a grilled chicken breast.
So here's what week #1 looks like:
For breakfast, I cook steel cut oats in almond milk, add in cinnamon, truvia and a small box of raisins. I also eat 3 egg whites, which can be scrambled or boiled. I prefer boiled, because it's quick and easy! Honestly, this is my favorite meal of the day, because it's sweet. Trust me, when you see the rest of the menu, you will understand why!
|The finished product|
I have a combination of cucumber, tomatoes, brown rice, black beans, apple cider vinegar and olive oil. This is yummy and quite refreshing in the summer!
|Yummy! Lots of cucumbers and tomatoes with a little rice and beans mixed in!|
This meal is pretty simple - a tilapia fillet, raw broccoli and red potatoes. After 3 days, I broke down and steamed the broccoli just a little...I hate eating raw veggies! I know raw is better, but if I can't stand it, then what's the point?
|Lunch! Pretty filling and yummy, too!|
This is probably my least favorite snack. I mix 1/2 a can of tuna with mustard and pickle relish and put it all on a unsalted, brown rice cake. I like tuna, but I'd normally add a bit of mayo to the mix and I can't do that now.
|My afternoon snack...|
Dinner is quite yummy! I get a skewer of chicken, shrimp, onion and red bell pepper - yum! Plus, brown rice (only 1/4 cup) and asparagus. I accidentally left asparagus off my grocery list, so I exchanged it for green beans.
|The dinner and lunch...the secret is to prepare a few days at a time!|
|My sides...all ready for the next few days!|
I wasn't too sure what I would think about the evening snack. I mix 0% Greek Yogurt, 1/2 scoop protein powder and almond milk together to make a "pudding". I forgot to take a picture of it, but it's not much to look at. Honestly, it's white with the consistency of a very runny yogurt. The first time I ate it, I thought it was nasty. However, it's funny how different things taste when you haven't had any sweets for a few days...now I find myself really liking this snack!
For me, the secret is to cook a few days of food at a time. Seriously, who has time to cook a complete meal every single night? I spent a few hours on Sunday evening chopping and cooking everything for the next few days. And then did the same thing on Wednesday. I think I now have a system down, so it took a lot less time to do the second time around. And, with the 1st batch of food, I didn't have any options with salt-free seasoning. (I did a recent pantry purge and most of my spices had expired.) I have to say that after 3 days, I wanted something other than lemon on my food! So, I picked up a couple of good salt-free seasonings for batch #2 and I am soooooo much happier! I was also surprised to see brown rice and potatoes on the menu...those were two things that I had pretty much sworn off completely. But, the amounts are very small...everything in moderation, I guess.
This Sunday, I get to start a whole new menu! I am so excited, because I get to eat an orange and string cheese every day! And, I get to have a pear each day! I never thought I'd be so excited to eat fruit again...but I am!
I have had a couple of work lunches that had me worried about the plan, but I managed to do just fine. I think while my sweet tooth misses it's daily fix, I will survive without the crap. The good news is that I do get to splurge here and there, so when I get a craving for something I just can't live without, I will satisfy it and get right back on track...isn't that what we're supposed to do anyway?
So, I hope you enjoy my journey on really cutting out the crap and getting down to business with this nutrition stuff!
Do you already eat a similar diet? Have you worked with a nutritionist? If so, how'd it go?