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Reinfire

Keeping it Simple

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Heya Nerd Fitness, excited to be back! It’s been long enough I think I’m back to being level 1 :) I’m a bookish nerd with a love of sci-fi, fantasy, and urban fantasy, that also likes making things with knitting, sewing, etc. I’ve attempted to make lifestyle changes in the past and usually get super excited, pile on a huge list of goals and make it maybe a week or two before burning out. So, I’m keeping it focused. My 3 big goals this year are:

  • Save $10,000 to cover a trip we'll be taking at the end of 2018. It's an overestimate, but the tickets alone for two people to fly from California to South Africa is $5,000 :( We wouldn't normally do a trip this expensive, but he has family getting married there so we'll make it work. We're trying to get in everything we want to do in one trip, so we'd much rather over-save for it than have to take money out of our house down payment fund.
  • Kick my energy drink, soda, and Starbucks coffee habits. This is mostly about cost, as I won't be restricting homebrewed coffee and tea and such, but also probably good to help me cut back on caffeine.
  • Lose 60 lbs to move into a healthy BMI for the first time in my adult life!!! Really, this is a pound a week, not as overwhelming to be looked at that way. 

 

These are big goals, but I realize there's a lot of overlap; for instance by reducing going out to eat and stops at gas stations for energy drinks, I reduce my consumption of caffeinated sugary drinks, save money, and help with weight loss! This month's SMART goals are...

 

Financial goal: Update my You Need a Budget at least once per week to monitor budget usage and give each dollar a job (and figure out if any cuts need to be made to reach our $833/month goal).

 

Diet goal 1: Drink flavored/sparkling water when I get cravings for energy drinks, adding in tea or homebrewed coffee in the mornings when I’m sleepy.

 

Diet goal 2: Meal plan and prep once per week, including calculating calories/portions and dividing up or noting weight of each portion to easily track calories.

 

Diet goal 3: Track calories daily using My Fitness Pal

 

Exercise goal: Find the little opportunities throughout my day to be more active (walking to see a coworker instead of calling, running around with a student instead of passing them back to their teacher, etc), and then scheduling time for myself to be active for 30 minutes 5 times per week. I’ve been a fan of walking super early in the morning while it’s still dark; feels very calming and helps me start my day off well, but it’s been super cold recently so I’ve let it fall off. Time to put on some winter gear and get back to it! (Or scrape the ice off my car and get to the gym before anyone else, lol).

 

Let's do this.

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3 hours ago, Reinfire said:

I’m a bookish nerd with a love of sci-fi, fantasy, and urban fantasy, that also likes making things with knitting, sewing, etc. I’ve attempted to make lifestyle changes in the past and usually get super excited, pile on a huge list of goals and make it maybe a week or two before burning out. So, I’m keeping it focused.

 

Hey there fellow bookish nerd! I too love to make things (I'm mainly a knitter, but enjoy all kinds of fibre arts), and suffer from, shall we say, an over-optimistic view of my capacity to make and sustain change?

 

Wishing you the very best of luck with your challenges this month. They seem very practical and reasonable to me, and will serve as a solid launch pad for your ultimate goal. (Amazing trip!! Healthy you!! Yeah!!!!)

 

Who are your favourite authors, BTW? I'm always on the look out for some good urban fantasy. I recommend checking out Sarah Monette, if you haven't run across her yet. She crafts her stories beautifully!

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4 hours ago, KayLou said:

 

Hey there fellow bookish nerd! I too love to make things (I'm mainly a knitter, but enjoy all kinds of fibre arts), and suffer from, shall we say, an over-optimistic view of my capacity to make and sustain change?

 

Wishing you the very best of luck with your challenges this month. They seem very practical and reasonable to me, and will serve as a solid launch pad for your ultimate goal. (Amazing trip!! Healthy you!! Yeah!!!!)

 

Who are your favourite authors, BTW? I'm always on the look out for some good urban fantasy. I recommend checking out Sarah Monette, if you haven't run across her yet. She crafts her stories beautifully!

Why hello there too! I haven't heard of Sarah Monette, think I'll add some of her books to my library hold list; any recommendation where to start? I've read and really enjoyed all of the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews, though there is a lot of violence in it if that turns you off. I'm just getting ready to start the Dresden Files too as I've heard great things about them.

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Time for a quick update today! I took care of our grocery shopping so I can meal prep tomorrow (my husband and I both just went through a round of a nasty flu so the fridge was pretty empty, but I'm on vacation this week so thankfully I have some time to catch up). Went for a walk around the block with the husband and it was the first time in a couple of days we were able to get out and move around without feeling ill or tired after the flu, so that's a good sign. 

 

I don't know if it's because I still can't smell/taste very well or lingering effects of the flu, but even going around the grocery store all of my usual cakes, cookies, sweets, etc just didn't even seem palatable. Even energy drinks, my constant weakness, just got a glance and then a "meh". Oh which reminds me, I've stocked up on lots of flavored water and been enjoying those today. All in all, a good first day!

 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 1/1

Track calories: 1/1

Exercise: 1/1

Meal plan: in progress

YNAB: in progress.... aka i have the tab open and haven't touched it yet; will work on that tomorrow!

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hi and happy new year! 

 

I had a big year of cutting spending last year at around this time, and something that helped me a lot with the coffee-out was to get a really wonderful to-go cup so I could bring my homemade tea with me everywhere I went. 

 

I'm not on myfitness pal, but what kind of calorie cutting are you doing? your plan to do the meal planning and portioning will really help out with that goal!

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That's what I'm planning on too @karinajean, I have a nice sturdy thermos to bring my coffee with me. I made some black tea yesterday and was actually pretty surprised by how dark and coffee-y it tasted :) 

 

Finished off my meal prep yesterday- it's not pretty, but it's delicious and comforting and gets me a lot of nutrients so *shrug* I'm aiming for a 1200-1500 calorie range, closer to 1200 when I'm less active. Also been keeping up with walking, both out and about to get places and on the treadmill with a book, higher step count these last couple of days than i've seen in months! YNAB is set up with my accounts, budget categories, and long term goals, which took a bit of doing as I had to hunt down all my bank/credit card passwords. All that's left is putting in the last couple days worth of transactions, which I'm planning to finish tomorrow. Woohoo!

 

Went out for a comics and coffee date with my husband today and, without really putting much thought into it I turned down the coffee to get some delicious toast (I know it doesn't sound exciting but it was good), and was also pleasantly surprised this evening when I realized I pour a smaller-than-average portion of wine; even my super sweet moscato is only 110 calories! 

 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 3/3

Track calories: 3/3

Exercise: 3/3

Meal plan: 1/1

YNAB: .5/1 ;) 

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Alrighty, 1 week down! I'm pretty pleased with how easy it's been so far to kick my convenience store habit (and with it, buying coffee/soda/energy drinks), but this week is the real test - I go back to work! It's definitely going to be harder to resist going out to eat and get snacks with my coworkers suggesting things, so this is when bringing my own food is going to be super important; I swear, the moment you say you didn't bring lunch in my office, every ear perks up and everyone starts suggesting places to go :P 

 

The only day I've gone over my calorie goal was Saturday, when I dealt with my arch-nemesis - PIZZA!

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But, I will say the bright side is that I felt more aware of my hunger cues afterward; the following day I didn't focus on fasting for a certain amount of time or anything, but found I just wasn't very hungry until closer to dinner time, and then ate my regular calories (until I was full). So, silver lining I guess :)

 

I just barely missed my exercise goal, 4/5! I'm not 100% sure if the gym will be less packed this week, I'm thinking instead of heading straight to the gym at it's busiest time right after work, I'll come home, change, and bring my husband with me (if he's still healthy, he's had a tougher time getting better than me), to try to miss the big rush.

 

Overall, I'm pretty pleased with my week 1 progress. Let's go, week 2!

 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 6/6

Track calories: 6/6

Exercise: 4/5

Meal plan: 1/1

YNAB: 1/1

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Great goals you have here! I tend to question the sanity of anyone who wants to completely give up coffee...but I'm insanely addicted to it and am at peace with that :D 

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Love your goals and they seem pretty attainable to me. I used YNAB the last two years and liked it a lot. I'll also be in SA during the holiday season this year, maybe we can share places to visit and eat! 

 

Keep up the fitness plans. One thing my old job used to do was weekly office walks. Every Friday they'd invite the office to do a 30 min walk in our area. Not sure what your break schedule is like at work, but maybe see if a coworker will do it with you or take a "walk break" around the block every day to incorporate more activity into your day.

 

Pizza is my kryptonite. Impossible to resist or restrain myself. Good luck! 

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Thanks for the encouragement @RES and @PhoenixRising18 ! I've been having pretty bad headaches the last couple of days that radiated up to my eyes and down to my jaw - at first I thought it might be some weird delay onset caffeine withdrawals or something, but even yesterday when I brought coffee from home it didn't help. I think, after looking up my symptoms, I might have a sinus infection, though it doesn't fit 100%. Today I'm going to try bringing dayquil and ibuprofen (I'll pick one to take around lunch time, since I don't want to hit my max daily ibuprofen in the middle of the day and my symptoms seem to flare up around 2-3pm) to see if that helps. 

 

I'm pretty pleased that even with how out of it I've been, I've still been staying pretty on track. Even on Monday, where I came home from work and fell into bed for 12 hours, I've still been tracking my calories and staying in my calorie goal. Yesterday since I was starting to feel better I went out for a walk with my husband; he wanted to get dinner but I wasn't feeling particularly hungry, and I realized I was being much more mindful as I shared his fries. Any time I started grabbing a couple at a time, or finishing a bite and immediately reaching for another one, I reminded myself that it was just habit and I wasn't starving or anything, and slowed down.

 

It's been pretty okay at the office this week as well; everyone's on financial or weight loss resolutions so there's not as much eating out and food pushing. Yesterday I was running late and wasn't able to put together my meal prepped meal and ended up eating out for lunch, but I started off by suggesting a few places to my coworkers that have calorie counts available and was able to stay within my calorie goal. Speaking of meal prep, being sick has affected my appetite, combined with eating out a couple of times means I'm a couple of days behind on finishing my meal prepped food. It still looks and tastes good, but it'll mean I'm doing a mid-week meal prep instead of weekend. I should be due to do another meal prep tonight or Thursday, but we already have all of the ingredients in the fridge and are building off some staples so I don't think it'll take long.

 

Anywho, stats so far this week:

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 8/8

Track calories: 8/8

Exercise: 5/6

Meal plan: 1/2

YNAB update: 1/2

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nice job on week 1 and awesome boss battle with managing your eat-out-lunch!

 

sorry about your head, though. i'd suggest increasing water (maybe hot herbal tea?) and using a humidifier while you sleep. Also - when you're in the shower you can rub your sinuses (FROM THE OUTSIDE OF YOUR FACE) and it can help loosen up anything that needs loosening. the warm water helps a lot while you're doing it.

Paranasal-Sinuses-1-300x202.jpg?format=o

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8 hours ago, Reinfire said:

he wanted to get dinner but I wasn't feeling particularly hungry, and I realized I was being much more mindful as I shared his fries. Any time I started grabbing a couple at a time, or finishing a bite and immediately reaching for another one, I reminded myself that it was just habit and I wasn't starving or anything, and slowed down.

 

This is so important! I am an eating machine if I don't pay attention -- and what pizza is for you, fries are for me!

 

It sounds like you really rocked Week 1 despite your illness. That's amazing stuff!! I hope you and your husband are both on the mend now. January is a tough month (I swear, almost everyone I know is sick, is getting sick, or is just getting over being sick!). Also, FWIW, I'm really impressed that both you and your husband are working together on these quests. It makes life so much easier when you and your partner are on the same page.

 

Looking forward to hearing about Week 2! I'm back at work next week, so I'll be facing the same challenges. I'm taking notes, believe me! :-D

 

P.S. If you're interested in reading Sarah Monette, I'd suggest starting with The Bone Key. It's a set of linked short stories that are inspired by? an homage to? H.P. Lovecraft. Creepy and fascinating!

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20 hours ago, karinajean said:

when you're in the shower you can rub your sinuses (FROM THE OUTSIDE OF YOUR FACE) and it can help loosen up anything that needs loosening. the warm water helps a lot while you're doing it.

Paranasal-Sinuses-1-300x202.jpg?format=o

OMG why have I never heard about this before? This is amazing and so helpful! I tried out taking DayQuil around lunch time yesterday and it helped a ton, I was actually able to function for my entire day and go for a walk after work too.

 

15 hours ago, KayLou said:

It sounds like you really rocked Week 1 despite your illness. That's amazing stuff!! I hope you and your husband are both on the mend now. January is a tough month (I swear, almost everyone I know is sick, is getting sick, or is just getting over being sick!). Also, FWIW, I'm really impressed that both you and your husband are working together on these quests. It makes life so much easier when you and your partner are on the same page.

 

Looking forward to hearing about Week 2! I'm back at work next week, so I'll be facing the same challenges. I'm taking notes, believe me! :-D

 

P.S. If you're interested in reading Sarah Monette, I'd suggest starting with The Bone Key. It's a set of linked short stories that are inspired by? an homage to? H.P. Lovecraft. Creepy and fascinating!

Thanks! In some ways it was almost easier to stay on track with my meal plan because half the time I couldn't really taste, so it was more about fuel than about handling cravings.

 

I'm pretty excited to have my husband be more a part of these lifestyle changes; he's always been supportive but sometimes absentminded (e.g. "I'm hungry, let's go get pizza!") and just last night he was talking about how he lost 10 pounds last year but would like to lose another 20-30. So we pulled up a TDEE calculator, BMI calculator, and losertown and figured out a calorie and exercise range for him to shoot for to reach his goal weight by Thanksgiving. He got a little indignant on my behalf since he just has to count calories and slightly lower his intake, whereas I have a significant calorie deficit and am also exercising.... but I also have a lot more to lose than him so *shrug*. I showed him how to use My Fitness Pal and we're planning to meal prep together this week so I can show him how to create a recipe, this is good!

 

So far this work week has been going pretty well - I had my first Starbucks yesterday so I could try the blonde espresso. And honestly? Meh. Halfway through I was like "Why did I pay $3.50 for this?". I also realized something flipping through my food log for this challenge, which is that previously I would eat dessert or something sweet literally every day, sometimes even multiple times a day, yet so far during this challenge I've had something sweet only 3 times, and all under 300 calories. I didn't set out to do this, but I think it's a side effect of me eating out less and stopping at convenience stores less, since it's just out of sight and out of mind. 

 

I've just finished off the last of my prepared veggies, so it's meal prep night for me tonight!

 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 8/9

Track calories: 9/9

Exercise: 6/7

Meal plan: 1/2

YNAB update: 1/2

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Alrighty, it's been a busy long weekend!

 

This weekend was the first time I missed tracking my calories - I did fine on Saturday going out to eat, but on Sunday at a potluck style hangout I lost track super quickly of what I'd put on my plate, how much, and how even to find something similar in MFP. I think this means that in the future, rather than making one plate with everything I want and then being done, I'll try making smaller servings and logging as I go, even if that means I go back for seconds. That'll also give me some time to assess if I'm truly still hungry or just snacking rather than just having delicious food right in front of me.

 

Went for a 3 hour, 8.5 mile walk yesterday just because it was a day off and I could :) It was nice walking by the river and listening to podcasts, but I'm a bit sore today. I also did some yoga last night to help streeeeetch out my kinda sore muscles. 

 

Looking at my calendar, I realized that starting this weekend I have a lot more going on than normal, sometimes 2-3 events on weekend days. My goals for this week are:

  • Use my weekday time wisely, doing meal prep in bits and pieces since I won't have free time on the weekend and cleaning up the apartment as I go so I'm not stressing about it right before people come over on Saturday
  • Mix up my meal planning; I've made almost the same exact thing for every lunch so far and while it's still tasty, it's starting to get boring. I have a cookbook from America's Test Kitchen on its way and I want to make a couple of recipes for the coming week
  • Exercise an extra day to make up for missing a day in Week 1
  • Pop on to the forums to update on my progress before the end of the week and check out the threads I subbed to but have gotten hopelessly behind on :P 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 12/14

Track calories: 13/14

Exercise: 10/11

Meal plan: 2/3

YNAB update: 2/3

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Hello again! It's been a busy week/weekend - I'm actually pretty glad that our tabletop roleplaying game we had scheduled tonight fell through cuz I'm beat and this gives me a little extra time to catch up. I didn't expect the Women's March today to be so tiring, but 4 hours on our feet/standing around and being in a big crowd did take it out of me.

 

I've got my new ATK cookbook and am loving it so far! I ran into a little problem though.... a) I was a little too ambitious and wanted to make ALL THE THINGS instead of a double recipe or something, and b ) I'm used to only cooking for myself, but since my husband's hopped on the CICO train he wanted lovely calorie counted foods for himself as well. After we'd already done the grocery shopping and started prepping, I added up all the calories and realized 

 

Netflix-Wants-More-Episodes-of-Arrested-

 

There was nowhere NEAR enough calories for the both of us. After a frantic bonus grocery shopping trip to re-make our favorite recipe so far (tofu bahn mi, yum!) and pack in some calorie dense foods, I think we're back on track. 

 

I'm counting my budget update is done because only one of our banking sites is being weird and not working :/ I'm really pleased with the changes we've made this month, taking the money we'd normally spend on forgettable, bland fast food we'd eat on our own and using it instead on meals to make at home and interesting date nights. All in all, we're spending about the same amount of money on food, but getting much higher quality and spending more time together. 

 

Exercise is also going well, and I'm going on an urban hike early tomorrow, yay! I didn't quite get in an extra workout this week, but I do have one more week to try to sneak in an extra walk or something. 

 

I've had both some scale and non-scale victories this week, finally dropping down below my first month's goal for my 6 month long dietbet, and also feeling much more control around food and freed from constantly thinking about my next meal. Hell, today I ate half a pint of Halo Top and felt satisfied.

 

Half. A pint. This is the stuff that's routinely advertised as, basically, the serving size is the whole pint cuz it's 2-300 calories. 

 

So overall, I'm feeling good about what I've accomplished in just a couple of weeks. It's not a crash diet or a crazy exercise plan, this just feels like normal.... but better. Something I can keep doing for a long time without burning out :) 

 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 16/19

Track calories: 18/19

Exercise: 14/15

Meal plan: 3/3

YNAB update: 3/3

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Stupid stomach flu. This is not how I wanted to lose 8 pounds.

 

On the bright side, I can now actually consume food without my body violently expelling it. On the other hand, my cough is back -_-

 

Exercise this week has been spotty, since i've been particularly weak and tired; I'm gonna do some yoga before I turn in tonight so I'm still on track for 5 this week but it's definitely more of the "keeping up the habit" exercise than "working up a sweat" exercise. 

 

Now that I can hold down food again my sweet tooth is off the charts - I've given in yesterday and today to chocolate, but 

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I'm saving up those calories for a delicious but awful for me 700 calories of Taco Bell nacho fries bellgrande. But I'm counting it and working it into my daily calorie goals, so *shrug* It's a cheap and easy date night meal, and we're going to be stereotypical fat people going from the gym to Taco Bell :P 

 

Drank water/tea/homemade coffee: 19/23

Track calories: 22/23

Exercise: 16/17

Meal plan: 3/3 (I now have TOO MUCH food since I basically lived on applesauce and PB&J for 4 days)

YNAB update: 3/4

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Sorry to hear you've been under the weather even with the bonus weight loss :( great job the last couple of weeks! 

Normal?

546499

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Wellllll hi....

So, I initially misread the whole first challenge of the year timeline and thought it ended last week at the 4 week mark. Nope! And I tried to keep it going this last week but man, this week has been rough. I'm finally feeling better, but both my husband and my dad had health scares this week, including a very panicked call to 911 for my husband who we were concerned was having some sort of organ problem (thankfully, no! Doctor thinks it might've been a muscle issue after all of the deep, hard coughing he'd been doing, and my dad is also ok after a scary ER visit).

 

I kind of am imagining, totally for my own sake here, that this challenge was 4 weeks long, and this week has been my brainstorming week, including backsliding on some of my goals but realizing how much better I feel when I'm on top of things. 

 

I did well drinking water, tea, and homemade coffee for the first 4 weeks, and while this last week I drank my first energy drink in over a month (which, BTW, is the longest I've gone without an energy drink in over 10 YEARS) I realized that it was pretty... meh. When I did drink coffee and such it didn't even really make much of a change in my energy level, except for a short maybe 30 minute boost right after the energy drink. So, lessons learned:

  • I don't really actually need these things (because they don't help me! Maybe once I've gone longer with less caffeine but right now it's just habit)
  • And if I do feel like I need caffeine, the coffee I make at home is better than Starbucks in every possible way; taste, calories, AND cost.
  • My trip up has been when I eat out with others and food comes with a drink; once I've got a fountain drink cup in my hand there's just no way I'm going for water. So, I need to pay closer attention or refuse the drink at the cashier. 
  • For February's challenge, I want to keep an eye on this to make sure I don't fall back into bad habits. I'm thinking I'll do a "Beat the Number" where I try to hit the same number or lower as this challenge, so my goal for next challenge will be 9 or under

Updating YNAB at least once a week turned out to be pretty easy, and also very effective. We just put in a payment on my husband's student loans knocking out 50% of it! Only $4000 left and we're on track to make our savings goal. Lessons learned after looking at our budget together:

  • We spent a LOT on eating out, $360 in a month as opposed to $275 in groceries. When we added up the number of visits, we realized that between the two of us there were at least 7 food expenses per week for the entire month! (and usually kinda crappy fast food, not like a going out with friends sort of eating out) This lead us to...
  • Talking more about meal prepping and how we can replace some of the eating out trips by having readily available food we can use when meal prep falls apart or we just want something different. So starting this week we grabbed some easy freezer foods, and have already seen our trips out go down. It was pretty cool to realize that for the cost of a single decent burger, we instead bought a whole bag of frozen patties and all of the buns and fixins. 
  • Our goal for February is to cut our eating out budget in half, to $200. I don't necessarily want to make that my goal though, since that relies on both of our behavior. Instead, I'd like to do another "Beat the Number", since the more often I'm updating, the easier it should be to course-correct and stay on budget. My goal for next month will be at least 5 YNAB updates.
  • In terms of meal prepping, it was tough to stay on track for cooking everything for 2 adults all in a day, so my goal for the next challenge is to have 2-3 meals prepared by Sunday night, and then cook throughout the week to take some of the stress off getting everything done all at once. 

Exercising fell short last week, especially as I had family and work obligations, so I give myself a "okay, but could've done better".

  • Reading while walking worked very well for the first 4 weeks as I seem to always have a backlog of library books. But, it was also very easy to skip it when I was at work late or my to do list piled up.
  • I've started attending a weekly hike meetup that's a nice easy path of about 2.5-3 miles with a small group, so I get in social time and build friendships while I get a walk in. It's not particularly strenuous but I'm eager to catch up with everyone week after week and it keeps me coming back. Similarly, when my husband is healthy and I didn't really want to go to the gym, we went for walks together around our neighborhood and talked about our days, which doesn't happen as much as I'd like. While I know these things aren't burning many calories, I think they're good for both my body and my emotional health and plan to keep doing these. 
  • For February, I'm going to keep my goal of exercising 5 days a week, and add in a rest day workout of at least one session of stretching or yoga to help me keep in the habit of doing something physical and of course improve my flexibility. I'd also like to start running once I drop into the overweight BMI category in 20 lbs. I lost 10 lbs in the first 4 weeks but have gained 5 back this week, not sure yet how much of that is water weight. If I stay on track I should be able to start running in April or May :) 

Tracking calories was by far the hardest for me to keep up on this month, especially when life got hectic and emotional. 

  • I realized that it's easiest to stay on track when I either am eating my meal prepped food (that's weighed and calorie counted ahead of time) or super processed food with a label. Stuff sitting out at a potluck with hard to measure portions ("was that serving spoon a half cup? Mmmm I got a really big scoop, maybe a full cup?") and no idea what went into it was a recipe for disaster. When I'm in the middle of a social gathering I don't want to look even more awkward/introverted and whip out my phone trying to decide which entry to use for each of the things I tried.
  • I'm not really sure how to deal with this since this is the favored get together for my social group :( Unless I can think of something better, for the next challenge I'm going to try a multi-pronged attack. First, wait! I don't need to jump right to the food, this is supposed to be about hanging out I don't need a fork and plate in front of me at all times. Second, pay attention; what is everyone raving about? Prioritize trying that over the same old processed appetizers and junk food that shows up every time. Third, grab the smallest plate possible and take half of how much I really want. I know my portions are skewed from years are overeating, and there's a pretty good chance that when I'll be satisfied with a smaller amount but if it's sitting in front of me I know I'll eat it.
  • This month I've played around with some vegetarian and vegan food options since my good friend went vegan and I wanted to have a few go-to recipes to share when we're together, as well as hoping to add more vegetables and inexpensive proteins like beans into my diet. This should've been obvious, but vegan =/= healthy or low cal. I mean yes, the buffalo cauliflower was seriously delicious but when I was trying to figure out why that and the cauliflower tacos had so many calories, I realized that the coconut milk used in the recipes has 500 calories a cup as opposed to 140 in regular milk. Whoa! So as I've made some of these recipes a second time I've made them vegetarian instead to get lower calories. 
  • Bonus though - found a great seitan recipe and it made amazing orange seitan (speaking of not very healthy food, but my consolation is that I got it down to 300 calories for a 2 oz serving, which I doubt a chinese food place could beat!)
  • For the next challenge, I want to continue focusing on tracking my calories, with a bonus for staying under my allotted 1300 calories. With my exercise goal, this would amount to 10 lbs lost in a month :D 

This month has been far from perfect, but I feel so much more confident that I can change even the most ingrained habits, and I've learned a lot. See you guys next challenge! I think I'm going to hop over to the Rebels board. 

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On 2/4/2018 at 5:23 PM, Reinfire said:

Tracking calories was by far the hardest for me to keep up on this month, especially when life got hectic and emotional. 

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this speaks to my soul!

good job with your first challenge! 

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