Saturday, January 31, 2015

And Then There's The Birthday...

So my birthday came and went.  I spent the day at work, which was uneventful though I did have courage enough to turn down a doughnut in the morning (non-scale victory).  After work, CC took me to dinner and then a movie.  Food wise I did okay for breakfast and lunch - I did a smoothie for breakfast (6 pts) and leftovers for lunch-roasted chicken, mashed potatoes and corn (8 pts).  I had planned a little healthier for dinner but the restaurant was way too busy so we went to the local Mexican Restaurant instead (busy but no wait) where.......I probably overly ate, then there was movie popcorn.  I did my points as honestly as I thought it could be using 35 points for dinner (damn those free chips and salsa) and 12 for the popcorn (I don't put butter on my popcorn).  Coming in 60 pts for the whole day!  A lot, but that's why I have those weekly points.

Hubby is taking me to dinner tonight and to buy a laptop case on wheels (which is what I asked for). So I'm going to start looking at restaurants in Chambersburg that I can figure out point values for. One bad day can't continue through the weekend.  My goal for weigh-in is to be 1 lb. down.

My birthday weekend will end at my parents tomorrow for spaghetti with chicken (instead of meatballs), so I'm planning the rest of my day around that.  We're not Super Bowl people so I don't have party food to worry about!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Weigh In and Skinnytaste Cookbook Review

Weigh-in resulted in a .6 (point 6) gain this week.  Not good - the weekend just threw me off!
What I liked though was the receptionist and leader after my weigh-in asked me something that no one at my old meeting location ever has "What can we do to help you?"  I knew why they asked, my weight is up and down and all around but nothing consistent and I know why - I'm just only "kind of" doing it.  I admitted it, they told me to set a goal and work to achieve it.  My goal? I want to have a pound loss next week and I want to put some exercise into my routine.  So I guess it is time to dust off the Wii Fit and I bought the WW 10 Minute Time Crunch Pack (which they gave me a discount on).  On top of that, my leader always does a drawing each month to "clean out the cabinet" as she puts it and for the second month in a row - I WON!!  I got a plastic water pitcher(not WW related), the WW cookbook "Master Your Meals" and the collapsible measuring cups.  Nice Deal!

If you've been anywhere within the WW community the past few years than you are very familiar with Gina Homolka and her website Skinnytaste and now there's the Skinnytaste Cookbook.

Again - another cookbook with more than just recipes, the front section is a wealth of information everything from answers to the most common excuses for not eating healthy to taking charge of your kitchen.  Lots of helpful information.  And well, if you've every been to the website - well the recipes speak for themselves.  Again, lightening up of everyday dishes, who knew it could be so easy!!

So I made out very well with the cookbooks - now to put them to use!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Dashing Dish

Dashing Dish is by Katie Farrell the creator of the website Dashing Dish.

I knew I'd love this book before I ever got it.  I just LOVE Katie's website so the book had to be fantastic.  These recipes are designed for "clean" eating but are the every day foods that you love!

This book starts with lots of information ahead of the recipes:  Tips for clean eating, Kitchen Staples, Tips for Dashing Dish recipes, eating on a budget, eating out, special occasions, developing healthy habits, snacks and meal planning.  Everything you'll ever need.

The recipes are simple and healthy.  Nothing out of the ordinary - just plain regular recipes that you'll love.  This book is worth the buy!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Snack Girl to the Rescue

My new recipe books have arrived and I wanted to do a post on each.

Snack Girl is by Lisa Cain who is famous for her blog Snack Girl.  

I had a chance to sit down and go thru this book last night and I'm very impressed!  Lisa gives her background, her opinion on weight loss scams, fad diets (and why they don't work), how food is marketed and the importance of healthy cooking and exercise (and no you don't have to run marathons for exercise or even join a gym).  All that information is before you ever get to the recipes! It's a quick read without being boring or the same old stuff - it's easier to understand when the person writing it has been there and done that!

The recipes are great.  They are simple, every day foods and most of the ingredients you probably have on hand.  No fancy chef dishes, just everyday food.  Those are the recipes I love!

So if you're looking for healthy, easy, normal recipes - this is the book you want!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Weigh-In Post

So weigh-in this week resulted in a .2 loss (that's point 2).  Not a lot but a loss none-the-less.

A post or two ago, I mentioned a newbie to Weight Watchers who couldn't understand not losing her first week since she wasn't using all her points and had given up diet soda; she also couldn't understand how anyone had time to plan.  I'm happy to say she apparently "got it" and had a great loss this week!  Good for her!

Today restarted my week and my day went like this:

Cup of Skim Milk
Pack of Better Oats Pumpkin Instant Oatmeal

3 oz. can of tuna in water, drained
Dannon light & fit Strawberry Cheesecake Greek Nonfat Yogurt

Montreal Beef Ribeye
2/3 cup of mixed vegetables
1/4 serving of Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

As of right now I have 6 points left over!  So I'm thinking a thick smoothie may be in order later.

I actually had a good food day.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Oops! I Forgot!

I packed my lunch in the morning and when I got to work realized that I had left it on the counter Oops!

That can be a bad thing; that can be a set up for failure.

Fortunately for me, I have an office job where there is a refrigerator, microwave, toaster oven and toaster AND a small salad bar in the dining area (that I don't have to pay for).  I have luxuries some do not.  However, I do hit those times when my lunch is sitting on the kitchen counter and I'm a 30 minute drive away.  So what do I do?

First off, in my desk I always keep non-perishables - cans of tuna, soup, canned fruit and sometimes even canned ravioli.  So if I forget my lunch, I always have something to eat which means I don't get tempted with fast food and such.

Tuna is a really good staple to have whether it's in cans or a pouch.  Canned salmon and chicken can work as well.  These are things that you can keep in your car, desk drawer or locker.  It doesn't need to be heated making it a ready to eat option.  Make sure to keep a manual can opener available in the event you get the type without a tab topped lid.  Go to the grocery store and walk up the canned food aisle - pick out things you can eat that you don't need to heat or you can eat cold if the need would arise.  Canned fruit is another good option (make sure it is in its own juice and not a syrup).  Peanut butter and crackers are good as well.

If you have access to a microwave your options grow - soups for example or just about anything you can heat up.  Access to a refrigerator?  Wow - you can have pretty much anything.

So look around and see what you can find so that if you have an "oops" - you don't have to worry.

Friday, January 16, 2015

The New Weight Watcher Starter Kit

You don't have to be new to Weight Watchers to purchase the Starter Kit or any kit for that matter.  Each year Weight Watchers has a new kit and I'm really excited about this new one.  Not only does it have really usable things in it; it is also cheaper than some of the past ones, which is very exciting!

(Please excuse my photography skills).  What you get are two portion plates (Corelle style, not cheap plastic), a Bento Box, a cookbook and coupons all for $24.95!

Now let's take a closer look:

The plates are white with gray areas to show portions, the back of the box gives you the instructions. The largest area is for your fruits and veggies; 2 is for your whole grains (whole wheat pasta, rices, potatoes, etc..) and 3 is for your protein (meat).

I really like the style of these plates and hope they sell them outside of the kit as I'd love to have a set! And you could pair them with the Corelle white dishes (cups, bowls, etc..)  I'm in the mood for new dishes and would really like these....but we will see.

Above is the Bento lunch box with it's portion containers.  I've been seeing a lot of this style of lunch box around (Rubbermaid has then as well) but Bento is the original (to my understanding, I could be wrong).  Nice touch to the kit.

The cookbook is Weight Watchers Easy Mains and Sides and I haven't had the chance to go through it yet, but as always there is ALWAYS something in the book I'll cook and like.

Coupons?  Here's what you get:

1.  Free One Shop or Eat Out guide
2.  $6.00 off WW Serving Spoon set
3.  $10.00 off WW Electronic Food Scale
4.  $1.50 off   WW Popped BBQ Potato Crisps or Cheddar Twists
5.  $1.50 off WW Dark Chocolate Chunk or Sweet & Salty Snack Bars
6.  $3.50 off WW Creamy Chocolate or French Vanilla Smoothie

The above are all available at your meetings.  The next group are available at your grocery store:

7.  $1.00 off WW Cereal
8.  $5.00 off a WW scale purchase o $39.99 or more
9.  $1.00 off All Whites or Better' n Eggs
10.  $.65 off WW cheese or cream cheese product
11.  $.75 off WW Sweet Baked Good (muffins, cakes, cookies)
12.  $1.00 off WW Whitman's candy bag or box 3 oz. or larger
13.  $.75 off WW Ice Cream
14.  $1.00 off  five WW Smart Ones Frozen Breakfast
15.  $1.00 off four WW Smart Ones Smart Anytime Products
16.  $2.00 off six WW Smart Ones Smart Creations
17.  $1.00 off three WW Smart Ones Frozen Desserts

And this:  $6.00 off WW Smart Ones Frozen Products (any), this one you need to go to the website to print.  It says it is exclusive to new members, but I'm sure if you bought the kit that's how you find the link!

Lots of coupons some good, some not...all depends on what you are looking for!

Thursday, January 15, 2015


I mentioned in my last post some items that could help you in your weight journey.

If you don't have access to a refrigerator where you work (or perhaps you are on the road most of the time) then I highly recommend a small cooler with some cold packs.  Another option is this:

A freezable lunch bag commonly know as a Packit.  The whole bag folds down to fit nicely in your freezer without taking up a lot of room.  You freeze the bag and then pack-it and it will keep your items cool up to 10 hours.

So you don't need a refrigerator and you can't say "I have no way to keep things cold." Yes you do!

If you don't have access to a microwave, hot plate, toaster oven, etc.., then obviously you can't pack something that needs heated or cooked - but you do have the option to pack ready to eat things: sandwiches, yogurt, carrots/celery/tomatoes/fruit, etc..  Don't use excuses, make it work!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Make It Simple And You'll Succeed!

So weigh in this week resulted in no gain or loss...I remained the same; and you know-that's okay.

My goal last week was to get 6 cups of water in a day and I've done very well with to continue on with it.  This week I want to work on the other Good Health Guidelines:  2 tsp of oil; 2 dairy; multi-vitamin; 3-5 servings of fruits/veggies.

I normally drink a cup of skim milk in the morning, so I'm good there.  I bought some yogurt and that should take care of the second serving.  Note:  The single serving yogurts normally don't count as a serving - yogurt does count as a dairy serving, but the size of these aren't considered a whole serving; however, I'm counting them as one.  How you choose to do it, is up to you.

We had a new person start last week and a few more this week.  The lady that started last week was a little frustrated.  She had no gain or loss and didn't understand why.  One she had given up diet coke and only drank water and Two most of the time she wasn't eating all her points.

Word of advice:  EAT ALL YOUR DAILY POINTS.  And the more you those weeklies and activity points.  If you are one of those people with a huge amount of points - forgo the fat free version and go with reduced fat or whole fat - they have more points and as your daily target moves down, you can go back to the reduced fat/fat free versions.

However, I began to realize that this lady probably wasn't really sticking to the program.  The lesson for the week was about the times of your meals.  Again, this all means planning things out.  As people were sharing how they do things, I heard her whisper to one of the new people:  "Who has time to plan all that?  Half the time at work I don't even get a break much less have any time to be planning things out."

And here again is a person that wants the program to work for her without having to work the program.  Obviously she doesn't work 24/7 and she comes to the meeting directly from work and meetings last like 30-45 minutes.  So she really has some time after the meeting to go home and figure something out.  But I'll be fair, I don't know what all she has to do at home so I won't be overly judgmental.  If time restraint is an issue, I offer some advice:  KEEP THINGS SIMPLE.

By simple, I mean find some grab and go things or things that can be prepared quickly.  Instant oatmeal is a favorite of mine and it comes in all types of flavors.  It's ready quickly - pair it with a banana and a cup of skim milk and you have a decent breakfast.  That's what I eat for breakfast almost every day; don't try to come up with 7 different breakfasts, only change if you truly are sick of something.

I have the luxury of a refrigerator and microwave at work; so pretty much anything goes. If you don't or need something that's more grab and go, a sandwich will work every time.  Buy light bread and the deli meat of your choice and pair it with carrot/celery sticks (don't have time to cut them up?  you can buy them already cut).  Yogurt is a good snack option, as are cheese sticks and fruit.  Also don't be afraid of chips and such...just count out one serving and count the points.

Smart Ones, Healthy Choice and Lean Cuisine are good in a pinch (and if you have microwave access).  I've been doing that this week at work, but I always have a side salad and piece of fruit with it.  Otherwise I'd be starving within the hour.

If you don't have access to a refrigerator; invest in a small cooler or a Pack-It Lunch bag.  I used a pack-it until I got a small fridge for my office (found that for $20 on a FaceBook yard sale site).  You can make the program fit your lifestyle - you just have to DO IT.

Monday, January 12, 2015

It's Too Expensive

I have many cousins besides CC and one particular one always is looking to lose weight and then never sticking to it.  I get it, I've been there.  Always wanting to lose but never doing it.  I've always said that the biggest obstacle in weight loss is your mentality.  Get your mind in the right spot and the rest will follow.  There's a huge difference between wanting to lose weight and actually doing it.  We all want it; but few do.

Anyway this particular cousin was thinking of Nutrisystem and wanted opinions.  I couldn't really give her an opinion because I've never tried that program, but I knew people that had, had been successful and well after the fact gained their weight back (again, I totally understand this-I've been there).  I told her that and just advised to check and see how their program advances you from their prepackaged meals to regular ones.

I asked though an obvious - is there a Weight Watchers in your area?  Her response, "Yes, but they are too expensive."  I get this too; obviously not everyone has the extra $45 a month for that; but when I checked the Nutrisystem website and saw what the monthly costs were; well I had to think that she was making excuses, was never really going to do Nutrisystem and obviously money isn't the issue.  I told her to check out the Spark People website as it was free.

I honestly believe that one diet does not fit all; and everyone needs to find what works for them.  I'm a Weight Watcher person and despite the $45 month fee I know I need that one on one, group atmosphere, weekly weigh in.  That's what works for me.  That $45 equals about $1.50 a day.  I think everyone can come up with $1.50 a day - make your own coffee rather than buying it; don't buy lunch out one day a week, you probably waste more than $1.50 a day.

Anyway, what I've learned is that when you're truly ready; money won't matter.  And if doing it on your own isn't working, well it never will.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Another Weigh In

So my weekly weigh-in resulted in a 1 lb. gain; but I can deal with that and am so very happy that the holidays are now over.  Time to get back to reality.

My goal this week is to increase my water intake.  I use to be very very good with this but have got off track.  I've heard some goals from people on giving up soda/diet soda.  I'll admit that I can download A LOT of diet soda in a day and it would be unrealistic of me to give it up entirely; so I can't make that particular goal.  However, what I will do is get the required six 8 oz. servings of water that Weight Watchers requires.  Actually, they say six 8 oz. servings of liquid and ANY liquid counts (including that soda) but.... I make it six servings of water.  To me that's the healthy option and WW needs to change that.

Anyway, I drink the required six servings of water BEFORE I allow myself any soda.  AND for every cup of coffee or soda I have, I down another serving of water.  AND when I drink water, it is plain water nothing flavored, but that's just a preference of mine.

Another trick I do with water that is a little different than others is that I don't fill a big jug of water and have it sitting in front of me all day.  I've tried that - I didn't drink it; seeing all that water was too overwhelming.  What I do is mark a cup with an 8 oz. line (with a permanent marker) and drink 8 oz. at a time.  It doesn't overwhelm me; and since I have to walk the cup to the cooler each time I get some extra steps in.  It's a win win for me!

But everyone is different and you need to find the little things that will work for you.

Another thing I did this week?  Some of my favorite websites have released cookbooks this past I went ahead and ordered them from Amazon:

 If you've never visited these sites - I highly recommend them!

Oh and Weight Watchers has a new kit out!  I didn't really look at it but the leader said it has 2 dinner plates (made like corel dishes, not cheap plastic) that have portion areas; a cookbook; a bento lunchbox with portion containers that fit in it and $50 worth of coupons.  There may be more but I don't really remember, but it is only $24.95!  It's cheaper than any of the past ones!  I saw someone selling them on eBay for $50-$60!!  I noticed that a point calculator is included in them there (but I don't remember my leader mentioning that).  Anyway, they could be a little different according to area but it does seem like a good deal and I'm buying mine at the next meeting!