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[Cat Takeover] NeverThatBored in ur kitchen, eatin all ur snax


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So, I am choosing one habit per challenge this year and focusing specifically on developing and exploring that one habit. Then each challenge, I am maintaining the old habits while tackling a new one. At the end of the year, if all goes well, I will have TEN GREAT HABITS.

04213-Cat-juggling-toy-mice-white-background.jpg

 

Challenge 1: Walking daily (aiming for 16 miles per week)

Challenge 2: Morning routine 

Challenge 3....

 

It's food time. 

 

giphy.gif

 

Here are some misc. things about me and food:
 

Spoiler


  • I hate tracking / calorie counting, but I like the idea of recording what I eat so that I can refer back to it when I'm trying to remember what was successful 
  • Food is as much a hobby for me as it is a means of sustenance 
  • Sometimes I get so caught up in the hobby aspect of wanting to prepare and eat food that I overdo it and have/consume too much
  • The same thing happens when I meal plan & batch cook - I either end up with food I don't want to eat and seek other options, or I end up with so much food I want to eat that I end up over-consuming it 
  • When I don't prepare food in advance, I also seek other options
  • Most carby foods are addictive to me - chips/crackers, cookies, cakes, bread - not really pasta though 
  • I am on an internal snack clock. I want to snack mid-morning at work, always, regardless of what I had for breakfast. And I want to snack when I get home from work as a way to unwind. 
  • I periodically get a carb craving that actually does need to be satisfied, and makes me feel much better after I indulge it - it's hard to distinguish this from other cravings though 
  • Grocery shopping is a genuine pleasure for me
  • I lose weight and get less manic about food when I'm a little bored with it, but don't dislike it
  • I am constantly trying to optimize by saying things like "I'll only eat desserts when I'm out of the house" and this doesn't work because I also really want to make my own desserts - this is true of many food groups
  • I am pretty successful at my "no eating after 8pm" rule, though it fluctuates a bit depending on schedules
  • I have lost weight successfully 3 times in my life. 
    • When I first started college, and ate in the dining hall on a meal plan. I could have small amounts of things like french fries and cake while still eating a giant salad. I lost about 15lbs naturally, without effort at that point. I had very limited snacks in my dorm - triscuits and peanut butter, light and fit yogurt, misc. fruit that I got from the dining hall, and some little candies.
    • The second time was Spring/Summer of 2015, when I first found out about my cholesterol problems. I went paleo with relative ease, without worrying about too much about anything other than just the basic rules of paleo. And I walked, and started a very basic workout plan. 
    • The third time was Spring/Summer of 2016, in very much the same pattern. I spent a month or so eating strict paleo, with a few extra goals like eating fish 2x/week, tracking fiber, and trying to get in some lean meats each week, etc. Snacks were often limited to fruit and nuts. 


 

 

So, that's me and food in a nutshell. What works for me seems to be limiting my food enough that it's a little boring, and getting plenty of fiber/vegetables. It's a challenge because food is also such a hobby for me that I don't want to limit it in that way. So I think what I need to do is somehow find a balance.

 

And I want to avoid setting excessive rules or tracking overly much, because even when it works, I don't think it's totally sustainable. And I want healthy eating to become something I do on autopilot, just like exercise is. 

 

So. I think for this challenge, I'm going to experiment with a hypothesis. The blog nomeatathlete mentions this concept at one point:

 

Quote

 

The way I see it, you only need to eat healthy twice during the day.  While you’ll certainly eat more than twice a day, just two healthy meals make it pretty hard to screw up the rest of them.

 

Once is in the afternoon, when a big salad loaded with greens, other raw vegetables, and nuts will fill you up and give you more veggies than most people eat all day.  And as a bonus, it’ll give you the chance to get even more good stuff, when you dress it with quality oil, lemon juice, and a little sea salt.

 

The other time is in the morning, when a smoothie made from fruits (and even vegetables) will not only set the tone for the entire day, but act as a vehicle for other superfoods or supplements you want to work into your diet.

 

That’s it. Just two healthy meals.

 

Even if you ate whatever you wanted the rest of the day, I’d be willing to bet you wouldn’t get fat, as long as you made sure to drink a smoothie and eat a big salad every single day.

 

 

I think there's something to this. Although I'll add protein to the salads because I'm not aiming for no meat. So, I want to experiment. If I have a smoothie every morning and a salad for lunch every day, then eat whatever I feel like for snacks and dinner, will that balance me out?

 

Details

The smoothies and salads can vary, obviously. I have a basic green smoothie formula I use a lot, but I can also just tinker with other options.

 

I have a roasted veggie salad recipe and a cobb salad recipe I really like. I'll need more variety than that to keep salads interesting, so please do share if you have any favorite salads!

 

I do want to experiment with black bean pasta salad, but loaded with lots of veggies. Oh, and there's that Mediterranean salad I like too. So that's 4. And thai steak salad with goat cheese and raspberry vinaigrette. I think I'll use the term "salad" loosely here. Like, if I make a ton of ratatouille or something, that's a large pile of vegetables, which is basically a salad. I can also make an omelette and chop it up on top of a salad.  I just need enough variety that I'm not like "ughh, salad" after a few days of this. I like craisins on a salad. And caesar with avocado. And so on and so on.

 

Mark over at MDA also eats a big ass salad for lunch every day, and swears by it, so there's another basis for this to work.

 

The other thing I kind of want to do is build up my salad database. When I have a tasty salad somewhere, I want to figure out how to recreate it at home. I've had two at the cafe where they hold a gaming meetup that I really liked - a spinach bacon salad with tomatoes, creamy balsamic, and sunflower seeds, and a caprese salad with tomato and mozz and balsamic glaze on greens. I haven't quite figured out a good creamy balsamic dressing yet. Or a balsamic glaze. Dressing is going to be the key to success here.

 

Other good ones I've had...there's one I don't remember that well, but I think it had arugula and goat cheese and some sort of crispy topping that didn't feel super unhealthy. Hrm. And there was one at a pub with figs, portobello mushrooms, and either feta or goat cheese, which was also amazing. 

 

Planning

There are a few things I need to prepare for. What if I don't want breakfast one day? Does skipping the smoothie and just having a banana mid-morning count against me? I don't think it should. That will be allowed. And also, I think there will be times when I just really want some eggs or some pancakes. Or get a chance to go out for breakfast and have something other than a smoothie. And I think for now I'll just observe what happens without judgement if it does. I'll see how often this variance actually happens, and then adjust from there if I need to. 

 

There's also travel. It's harder to make a smoothie when I'm staying with friends or the boyfriend. I guess I can do it at the boyfriend's. Although sometimes we don't eat breakfast and lunch is our first meal of the day. I'm not worried about the time with friends. It's not so common that it's an issue. The time with the boyfriend will need some care though. We both like eating out as a hobby, so it's hard to say I'm just going to have a salad, especially when there are so many salads I don't really like at restaurants. So, I'm not sure. I don't want this to turn into deprivation or forcing myself to eat a mediocre salad when there's something else amazing in front of me. It might be dangerous, but I kind of want to play this by ear too. Maybe have a salad for at least one meal out of every three days I'm with him? Or maybe focus on just getting a certain quantity of vegetables in general? Or on eating paleoish? I don't know yet. 

 

There will probably also be times when I end up having something other than the planned salad for lunch. In those cases, I think I'll just try to adjust by having it for dinner instead. I don't like eating salad for dinner unless it's amazing, so I won't plan for this to happen. I'll just be prepared to adapt when it does. 

 

Other Stuff

So none of this is a specific goal, but I have other ongoing habits / fitness stuff that I'll often report on here:

  • Yoga
  • 3 workouts / week
  • 2 runs / week
  • Meditation 
  • Shopping ban running Jan - March (and maybe longer) - no eating out unless travelling or socially, no shopping unless I need to replace something that runs out
  • Aikido 

 

  • Like 16

Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

2021 challenges:  46 | 4748 (current)

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My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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Love how well you know what works for you, and your idea of experimenting a bit to  see what else will work. Salads in restaurants I usually find disappointing, mainly a bunch of lettuce and sugary dressing, and hardly any protein or other veggies.

  • Like 2

Wisdom 22.5   Dexterity 13   Charisma 15   Strength 21  Constitution-13

"If more of us valued food and cheer and song, above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world" J.R.R.Tolkien

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Following again!

 

I love your goal for this challenge! Salads are a favorite of mine. I was especially excited to read about how adding eggs to your salad makes the nutrients easier to absorb, too - eggs are a second favorite food of mine (especially deviled eggs!). I tend not to care for most dressings, though: I usually just squirt a little lime or lemon juice over everything and call it good. My basic salad is spinach leaves (I'm iron deficient on a good day), bell peppers, mushrooms, cucumber, and green onions. I also like adding fresh jalapenos or pepperoncinis for an added kick, or I'll sprinkle on a little shredded cheese to help meld the veggie flavors together. I've tried adding meats to my salads but... it just seems to distract my taste buds. I've pretty much settled on only adding in sliced hard boiled eggs, if I don't just eat them as a side dish to the salad. Everything else - grilled chicken, sliced deli meat, shrimp, etc. - makes it taste like the salad needs a heavy dressing.

But my favorite part of salads is how pretty they look. ^_^ None of my coworkers seem to like eating salad, but they always comment on how appealing mine looks compared to their Tupperware containers of leftovers. :P 

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I can relate to so many things you mentioned about food. I also enjoy grocery shopping. I'm not much of a shopper overall, but I enjoy grocery shopping and try to do it when I have time to leisurely stroll the aisles. 

 

Following you for this adventure!

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Level 3 Dwarf Ranger

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I go grocery shopping very tactically late on Saturdays so I can take my time and kinda have the store mostly to myself.  I enjoy it too!!  Mm, food.............. and cats, of course!

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I'm in ur thread, [verb]ing ur [noun]. 

 

(need moar coffee b4 memez) 

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Following! Yay CATS!!!!

 

Second, I love the salads. All the salads! Just, good salads... with stuff on them. Not just lettuce and fatty/sugary dressing. 

 

One of my favorites is to have a salad with some spinach, crasins, almonds, and blue cheese with just a little vinegarette dressing. OR spinach, tomatoes, carrots, and vinegarette dressing. Something simple like that. Sometimes add a boiled egg or some chicken and voila! Love it. 

 

I do want to find some smoothie mixes to try out. Bad this is that I can't stand the taste of yogurt, so most of mine have to go without. We'll see how it goes. I may just stick with eating regular fruits. 

 

Just keep at it, you'll get there! 

 

And now, for your healthy kitty viewing pleasure...

 

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Heroine of Time

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3 minutes ago, RhiaWolfe said:

I do want to find some smoothie mixes to try out. Bad this is that I can't stand the taste of yogurt, so most of mine have to go without. We'll see how it goes. I may just stick with eating regular fruits. 

 

 

I almost never put yogurt in smoothies, and they still come out delicious! I just use 1/2 a banana and ice to thicken it instead. 

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Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

2021 challenges:  46 | 4748 (current)

2015-2020 challenges: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 |15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 || 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 || 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 || 43 | 44 | 45 | |

 

My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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1 minute ago, NeverThatBored said:

 

I almost never put yogurt in smoothies, and they still come out delicious! I just use 1/2 a banana and ice to thicken it instead. 

 

Do you use anything for a base? Juice? Water? Milk?

Heroine of Time

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11 minutes ago, RhiaWolfe said:

 

Do you use anything for a base? Juice? Water? Milk?

 

I usually use a mix of almond milk and water, but I'll use regular milk when I have it around. Juice is delicious but I try to limit the sugar in smoothies, so I rarely use it.  

Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

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2015-2020 challenges: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 |15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 || 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 || 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 || 43 | 44 | 45 | |

 

My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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4 minutes ago, NeverThatBored said:

 

I usually use a mix of almond milk and water, but I'll use regular milk when I have it around. Juice is delicious but I try to limit the sugar in smoothies, so I rarely use it.  

 

That's the reason why I stopped doing smoothies... I only made smoothies with juice. Too much sugar. 

 

I've never had almond milk... hrm. Might have to try that. Thanks for the suggestions!

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Heroine of Time

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3 minutes ago, Muir said:

 

Almond milk is so good! It's good in smoothies, but really good in coffee and hot chocolate! :)

 

Not a fan of coffee... but I'll try the almond milk in smoothies. Is it better for you than regular milk or skim milk?

Heroine of Time

Height: 5'8  Weight: 315lbs

Current Challenge: RhiaWolfe Follows the Way of the Samurai

Previous Challenges: 1234567891011121314151617181920212223

"Reach for the stars! If you only make it to the moon, you've still done good!" - My Dad

"Hyaaaat! Jeeyat-Hiyaaaah Hiet! Hyaaaaaaa Hiyyyyet! Hiyaaaaat Hiyaaaa!" - Link

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3 minutes ago, RhiaWolfe said:

 

Not a fan of coffee... but I'll try the almond milk in smoothies. Is it better for you than regular milk or skim milk?

 

No, not necessarily. It depends on your body and your goals and how you're using the milk. Like, if you have trouble with dairy or are avoiding it for other reasons like eating paleo or vegan, almond milk is a good alternative. Almond milk is lower calorie than regular milk, but it also has less protein and calcium. I also think it doesn't taste very good by itself, but it's good for smoothies and mixed into some things. It just depends. Neither one is healthier than the other. 

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Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

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2015-2020 challenges: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 |15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 || 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 || 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 || 43 | 44 | 45 | |

 

My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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1 minute ago, NeverThatBored said:

 

No, not necessarily. It depends on your body and your goals and how you're using the milk. Like, if you have trouble with dairy or are avoiding it for other reasons like eating paleo or vegan, almond milk is a good alternative. Almond milk is lower calorie than regular milk, but it also has less protein and calcium. I also think it doesn't taste very good by itself, but it's good for smoothies and mixed into some things. It just depends. Neither one is healthier than the other. 

 

Good to know! Thanks for the info!

Heroine of Time

Height: 5'8  Weight: 315lbs

Current Challenge: RhiaWolfe Follows the Way of the Samurai

Previous Challenges: 1234567891011121314151617181920212223

"Reach for the stars! If you only make it to the moon, you've still done good!" - My Dad

"Hyaaaat! Jeeyat-Hiyaaaah Hiet! Hyaaaaaaa Hiyyyyet! Hiyaaaaat Hiyaaaa!" - Link

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Love this challenge, because salads! (and baking, I like baking too).

 

My two favourite salads at the moment are: Brocoli and bacon salad with red grapes - mmmm. Or a kind of greek salad with sundried tomatoes and olives and spinach and then any other veggies I feel like. The oil from the sundried tomatoes is enough that you don't need any other dressing. 

 

RE: Baking, I try and limit myself to baking when I have people around or am going somewhere and taking it with me - that way I can still enjoy baking and trying new recipes etc but I don't end up with a whole batch of #insert whatever delicious recipe I wanted to try#. Just a thought :)

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12 minutes ago, EmeraldEagle said:

The oil from the sundried tomatoes is enough that you don't need any other dressing. 

 

Oooh, that's an interesting idea! Thanks for the tip!

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Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

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My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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Week 0 Monday Update

 

I worked from home today because I did not know how to find time to shower AND get enough sleep before work after getting home so late last night. I'm feeling pretty worn out from the weekend, so it was hard to make myself do things today. I had chances to walk and do yoga, but I did not do either of those things. I could still totally do yoga, and should since I am stiff. We'll see. I'm scrambling to catch up with domestic rangering before I head out again this weekend, so today I did some laundry and some other cleaning in between working. 

 

I am DYING to play Breath of the Wild but apparently I'm more of an adult than I thought because I'm not willing to let myself stay up all night to fit it in. I will totally start binge-playing starting after work tomorrow though. 

 

Tonight, I had aikido. I was tired and cranky and sore and I did not want to go, but once I dragged myself there I had a good time. We're supposed to get a giant snowstorm for the next two days, so everyone is on high alert. In hindsight, I really should have gone out on a walk today before the snow. Ah well. 

 

My morning routine was not the best either, being tired and cranky. I don't think I actually brushed my teeth until right before I left for Aikido. Whoops? :P

 

WBCL_web_2014_blog_brushing-cats-teeth-858x429.jpg

 

Food was so-so. I'm still carrying on the goal of not buying more groceries until after I get home from visiting my friend this coming weekend, so I won't have a lot of salad ingredients until then. I had a weird smoothie for breakfast. I have some kefir that I bought to experiment with in smoothies, but I don't think I like it much. Which makes sense, because I don't really like kefir to begin with. Then I made delicious chinese chicken lettuce wraps for lunch, and had some of the lingering pantry pasta for dinner. It wasn't enough protein or vegetables, and I can feel my body needing those things. Which is cool! I often feel like I have not made any progress on food, but having that level of awareness about my reactions to food is a pretty clear sign of progress. 

  • Like 9

Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

2021 challenges:  46 | 4748 (current)

2015-2020 challenges: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 |15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 || 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 || 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 || 43 | 44 | 45 | |

 

My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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My boyfriend says that this is my theme song :encouragement:

 

 

Coming soon to a challenge near you.

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Gargoyle Ranger | Level 47

2021 challenges:  46 | 4748 (current)

2015-2020 challenges: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 |15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 || 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 || 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 || 43 | 44 | 45 | |

 

My epic quest | MEATBALL WARS

You don't get better at anything unless you start doing it.

Being alive is heckn swell. 

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Following along! I love anything that simplifies or takes the emotion out of food decisions so I am intrigued by your "smoothie for breakfast and salad for lunch" idea. It makes a lot of sense to me, and I already eat a salad for lunch most days. 

 

Here to watch you kick it! 

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23 hours ago, NeverThatBored said:

If I have a smoothie every morning and a salad for lunch every day, then eat whatever I feel like for snacks and dinner, will that balance me out?

 

I like this idea.  In the book, How to Eat Like a Hot Chick, the writers say you can have chocolate cake as long as you follow it up with a huge helping of spinach.  Sure, the chocolate cake may not be great for you, but the nutrients of the spinach are so good for you that it will help balance out the bad.

 

I'm interested to see how this goes for you!

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