Monday, March 30, 2015

Whole 30: Week 4

Today's my last day of Whole 30!!! If you couldn't tell by the exclamation points, I'm pretty excited about making it all the way through without giving up! I'm down 8.5 pounds from March 1 and my clothes fit great. I plan on continuing to eat clean and sticking with Whole 30 foods for the most part since I've felt so much better this month, but will also allow myself to eat non-Whole 30 foods every so often. I can't tell you all how excited I am to make cinnamon rolls this weekend for General Conference!

What I've Been Eating/Doing This Week

I have to admit that I slacked off quite a bit this week as I got sick of making food multiple times a day and eating the same things over and over. Instead of making actual meals some nights, I'd dig through the fridge and eat stuff that didn't necessarily make up a meal. For example, I'd eat a bowl of strawberries, a handful of carrots, a sweet potato, and some tuna. Or a pear, some jerky, a fried egg, and some broccoli. I realized that I definitely do better with actual meals and meals that are better balanced. Friday night we went out to dinner with friends and I decided to have a slice of pizza since I was only a few days away from being done with Whole 30. Worst decision ever! I was so sick that night as my body digested the gluten and dairy, and now pizza sounds awful. (I guess that's why they say slowly add things back into your diet. :)) I didn't make any new recipes, but we used our favorites from the previous weeks.
^^Spaghetti squash, ground beef meatballs, diced tomatoes, & cantaloupe. Mixed green salad with a cilantro-lime vinegarette (grilled chicken not pictured). Two fried eggs & a banana.^^

Results From Week 4

I basically feel the same as last week - healthy and energetic! Sick of eating the same foods, bored, and getting lazy with food prep. I didn't get my 10,000 steps in each day this week, and with colder weather, I didn't too much in the way of physical activity. I lost half a pound this week.

Goals For the Upcoming Week

Stick with eating clean for the most part and work on discovering new recipes! Also, make the perfect cinnamon rolls for General Conference. ;)

Friday, March 27, 2015

good reads: volume 2.

With no evening classes this semester, I've been diving into books like they're going out of style. And Netflix . . . but, you know, that makes me sound lazy. ;) I'm really into listening to books right now which works well with my schedule and my need to always multitask. (Shout out to Ben for this wireless speaker that follows me all around the house as I do chores.) Over the last few months I've come across some fun and quick reads, and some more serious, heavy reads that I'd recommend to anyone.

(Find volume 1 here.)

1 // Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is. That's because he's being raised by his miserable aunt and uncle who are terrified Harry will learn that he's really a wizard, just as his parents were. But everything changes when Harry is summoned to attend an infamous school for wizards, and he begins to discover some clues about his illustrious birthright. From the surprising way he is greeted by a lovable giant, to the unique curriculum and colorful faculty at his unusual school, Harry finds himself drawn deep inside a mystical world he never knew existed and closer to his own noble destiny.

Synopsis from here.

Side note: After coming home from Christmas break, I decided that I wanted to listen to the books on tape as I walked to & from work and did stuff around the house. I finished the series in a few weeks after realizing how much better the books are than the movies. It was fun to read the series as a kid/teenager, but the second time through was even more fun as I picked up on the small details and caught more of the references.

2 // Bossypants by Tina Fey
If you're a fan of Tina Fey, you need to read her book. Tina takes the reader through her childhood and details how she got started in the acting/comedy business, and ends with her latest few endeavors. Of course, she'll have you laughing all along the way. I especially loved her thoughts on true beauty, balancing motherhood and a career, and how not to plan a honeymoon!

3 // We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Three cousins (and their friend) spend each summer on their grandfather's private island with the rest of their extended family. There's tension between different family members and eventually an accident occurs that affects the whole family from that point on. Together, the four teenagers reveal to the reader what exactly happened as they work through the truth and lies.

4 // Mrs. Mike by Benedict and Nancy Freedman
Recently arrived in Calgary, Alberta after a long, hard journey from Boston, sixteen-year-old Katherine Mary O’Fallon never imagined that she could lose her heart so easilyor so completely. Standing over six feet tall, with “eyes so blue you could swim in them,” Mike Flannigan is a well-respected sergeant in the Canadian Mounted Policeand a man of great courage, kindness, and humor. Together, he and his beloved Kathy manage to live a good, honest life in this harsh, unforgiving landand find strength in a love as beautiful and compelling as the wilderness around them…

Synopsis from here.

5 // Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood. Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared. It was that of a young lieutenant, the plane's bombardier, who was struggling to a life raft. So began one of the most extraordinary odysseys of the Second World War.

The lieutenant's name was Louis Zamperini. In boyhood, he'd been a cunning and incorrigible delinquent. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics. But when war had come, the athlete had become an airman, embarking on a journey that led to his doomed flight, a tiny raft, and a drift into the unknown.

Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will. Unbroken is a testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit.

Synopsis from here

Read anything good lately? I'm always looking for recommendations!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


// I just started listening to The Book Thief and I'm loving it thus far. We also watched The Imitation Game this past weekend and rather enjoyed it. Anything WWII is my favorite.

// Because I was promoted to a clinical position at work, I had to get a drug screening done. Instead of having you pee in a cup, they shave a 1" x 1" square in the back of your head. I've never felt so attached to my hair.

// I read an article this week that ranked the top 10 worst cities to live in if you have allergies. Of course, St. Louis made that list. Ha. My eyes and nose can testify of the validity of that statement.
// I'm 24 days into the Whole 30 program and last night I had my first dream about food. Snowcones, to be exact. Am I dying for sugar, or am I dying for summer? Probably both...

// For 3.02938 seconds, Ben and I considered spontaneously going to Ireland until we realized that would be an incredibly stupid financial decision for us right now. It was a fun 3.02938 seconds though and I can't stop looking at Groupon vacation packages.

// I recently created a Goodreads account and love that it allows you to keep a list of books you want to read! Do you have an account? Let's be friends! (Random fact: I like to read multiple books all at the same time.)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Whole 30: Week 3

What I've Been Eating/Doing This Week

The third week was a whole lot easier than the previous two, mostly because eating clean has become almost second-nature and I crave things less. Granted, I was dying for a slice of chocolate cheesecake Saturday night, but the craving went away after I had a fried egg. Like I mentioned last week, food has become a bit boring but I tried to pick up some "new" fruits and veggies this week for variety. I also made a point of searching out new recipes on Pinterest. We really loved this one, and since it ended up making enough for 6 meals for both of us, I didn't have to make as many meals this week. It was a nice break!
^^Chicken Vegetable Chili. Taco salad: spinach, ground turkey, guac, salsa, tomatoes, and carrots. Fruit bowl: pineapple, grapes, and coconut chips.^^

Results From Week 3

I feel fabulous! Healthy and happy with what I'm fueling my body with. I still have lots of energy as long as I make sure I'm eating a snack every few hours and drinking lots of water. Unfortunately, my face broke out again really bad this week so I'm pretty sure that what I was eating before wasn't causing the acne; it has to be hormonal. I lost 1 pound this week.

Tips & Tricks

I set a notification on my My Fitness Pal app so it'll remind me each day around 5pm if I haven't yet met my steps goal. It's definitely keeps me on track!

Eating clean can get expensive so I try to plan my fruits and veggies around what's on sale that week (with the exception of my pears!). I've also been buying lots of what's on sale and freezing it if possible for the next week.

Find a friend that will encourage you to keep going. Whenever I have a craving for something sweet, Ben will remind me that it's only 30 days and that I shouldn't give in now.

If you're going to a potluck or dinner party, offer to bring a dish or two that you know you'll be able to eat.

Goals For the Upcoming Week

Eat more veggies than fruit, and try 3 new recipes.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Whole 30: Week 2

Another week come and gone, and I can't say I'm sad to see it go! I've been craving lasagna and homemade rolls for a few days and can't wait to make slightly healthier versions of them for a Sunday dinner next month.

What I've Been Eating/Doing This Week

To be honest, we had a lot of the same meals as last week with the exception of a few new recipes... there's only so much you can do with meat, fruits, and veggies. While grocery shopping a few days ago I tried to buy produce we didn't eat last week in the hopes that it would mix it up a little. I'm currently sick of salads and definitely sick of chicken. Overall, throwing dinners together got a whole lot easier when I stopped focusing on recipes and more on what flavors would taste good together. For example, one night we had chicken sausage, sweet potatoes, onions, spinach, tomatoes, and carrots all thrown together; it was amazing! One evening I didn't have time to make dinner before running out the door, so I stopped by Chipotle and got a carnitas salad (just the lettuce, meat, pico de gallo, and guacamole) and it was wonderful in every way. I have a feeling I'll be back again before the month is over! We tried a few new recipes and loved this one, but didn't care much for this one.
^^Spaghetti squash, meatballs, & mango. Spinach, tomatoes, carrots, & chicken sausage mixed with sweet potatoes. Chicken fajitas with romaine lettuce instead of tortillas & mango salsa on top.^^
^^Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin & spinach, tomatoes, and carrots. Frozen grapes. The cinnamon rolls I made for my husband's thesis committee that were my biggest temptation this week. It was a struggle to not give in!^^

Results from Week 2

This week was a little bit harder as I got bored with the food, but I kept up with tracking my calories and steps with My Fitness Pal. I definitely didn't meet my goal of getting 10,000 steps in for 7 days (Sundays are my downfall!) and I didn't go to the gym once last week! I'm okay with it since my focus is mostly on eating clean. I lost 2 pounds, but more importantly, my clothes are starting to fit so much better! I took myself shopping on Saturday as a reward and bought a new church dress.

Tips & Tricks

I've heard that cravings persist for 5 minutes. I found that if I started thinking about sugar and I waited 5 minutes, I usually didn't end up needing to eat a piece of fruit or some coconut chips.

Frozen fruit. I loved sucking on some frozen grapes or strawberries when I couldn't get rid of those cravings. :)

As I mentioned previously, I had to make cinnamon rolls and it was awful. It was especially awful to come home after a bad day at work and see a few leftovers sitting there. I made Ben give away extra cinnamon rolls so we wouldn't eat them. Out of sight, out of mind!

Try the coconut oil cooking spray from Trader Joe's instead of using EVOO. It adds such a great flavor to whatever you're cooking!

Goals For the Upcoming Week

Drink half my body weight in ounces of water every single day. Run outside twice and go to the gym twice with Ben, as well as hit my 10,000 steps for 7 days straight!
Theme created by Sweet Lemon Grey Designs