Friday, November 13, 2009

Daily Plate and Slim in 6

So I've been working hard this week on weight management. I've been tracking calories every day and exercising every day. I haven't seen crazy results yet, but I'm feeling better, more energetic, and just all around better about myself. There have been two tools that have been very instrumental in helping me achieve my goals.

The first is The Daily Plate. It is a part of the Livestrong site. It is a great tool for keeping track of what you have eaten for the day. There is a search bar where you enter what you have eaten. Then you choose the current food item, fill in how many servings you ate, and you can designate what meal or time you ate it. There are lots of different foods. I've found something to match up with everything I've eaten. It is a bit more difficult if you make most of your meals from scratch, but you can find something very similar - at least that has been the case with me. If you eat prepackaged meals/snacks it is extremely easy to find. They also have a feature where you can group items into meals. This is great for my breakfast, since I eat the same thing every morning. That way I don't have to add everything separately every day.

The site also creates a pie graph to let you know where your calories came from, eg. Carbs, protein, fat. There is also a pie graph you can access that shows all the foods you have eaten that day in regards to their calories. So you can see what is making up most of your calories. It also keeps a running total of sodium, fat, carbs, etc and tallies it towards the bottom of the page.

This has been a wonderful tool for me. I keep the website in my tabs at all times, so it is easy to remember to log what I eat. It is also alot easier to skip the high calorie offenders when I know that I will be logging it.

There are also some other tools available. There is a place to enter your weight and some measurements so you can see your progress over time. There are more in depth tools, but they require a paid subscription. I find that there is plenty there without the subscription, which is great for those of us trying to save some cash where ever we can.

So, if you have ever wanted to keep a Food Journal, I would definitely recommend The Daily Plate.

Exercise - shouldn't it be a four letter word? Well at least for me it could be most days. Sure there are days when I can't wait to get moving, but most days, I'd rather sit and do something else. I've found that I do much better when I have a program spelled out for me, rather than just picking something each day. I was using P90X, which is a great program, but it wasn't right for my goals. It really isn't a weight loss program. However, I really like how Beachbody sets up their programs, so I looked in Slim in 6. The premise is that you work out for 6 weeks and slim down. I have heard stories of people radically transforming through this program, but I'm just hoping for a small transformation. I'm about half way through and I'm really loving it. The program starts out with a few days of a 25 minute routine to teach some of the basic moves. Then you move on to the 45 minute routine for about 1.5 weeks. This one definitely harder, but not too bad. Then you do an hour workout for the last 4 weeks. This one is a serious workout, sweating, sore muscles and all that jazz. It's great. Plus when I feel sore, I'm feeling sore in all the places I want to feel sore: thighs, abs, rear. Another feature that I enjoy is that there is always a timer running to let you know how much time is left. I've done other work out tapes where I was constantly looking a clock trying to figure out just how much torture time was left - here they provide it for you. The instructor is upbeat and encouraging, but not sickenly so. I also like that it is an hour of nonstop movement. P90X seemed to have a lot of downtime, even in the cardio workouts - this one just keeps you going.

There are also 3 shorter workouts also, Thin Thighs, Abs, and Flexibility. They are each about 12 minutes long. I do 2 or 3 of those if I'm feeling off and really really don't want to do a full hour.

The downsides: Taking an hour a day can at times be hard to do, but I keep reminding myself that it's worth it. There are some moves that my neck and back don't appreciate. I just take it a little easy on those. I thought I would see better results by now, but I know that I'm just one of those people that is going to have to be very vigilant to lose the weight, that's just how it is. The first couple weeks of the program I didn't watch what I was eating very closely, I'm hoping that by combining the two I will see better results soon.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Blog Hop - Question

Today's Hop asks us to pose a question to our readers.

What is your favorite low calorie snack?

I need some more ideas. Mine, right now, are a few almonds or some popcorn.

MckLinky Blog Hop

Monday, November 9, 2009

6 Months - Noah

So this post is a little late, but oh well. Noah turned 6 months old on the 5th. I can't believe half a year has gone by already, just crazy. He has a Dr. appointment on Wednesday, so I don't know official stats, but my guess is that he is a little over 16 lbs and maybe close to 27 inches. He is creeping, and allllmost crawling. He can sit up for quite a while, although he still has times where he just topples right on over. He's eating some solid foods, and is loving them (most of them). He is still a booger about drinking from his bottle. It's pretty frustrating, but he is still gaining weight, so I try not to worry.

On to the pictures - Wow, he has changed alot, I think.

5 Days Old

3 Months Old

6 Months Old

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Blog Hop - Photo

A little late, and I haven't been doing this every week... but I have a recent photo to share, so I thought I would join. Actually I have two photos, one of my boys, and the other of a couple of our pets. Enjoy!

I was making silly faces trying to get some smiles - I guess I over did it. :)

Here we have Ringo the cat and Sophie the dog. There is something going on there I think. The cat lives outside because of my husband's allergies, but he always seems to let him in to play with the dogs. I am realizing that I am definitely not an inside cat person... Oh and yeah, they are sitting in my little one's car seat, the dogs like it because it is nice and cozy right now because of the seat cover.

MckLinky Blog Hop

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Super Spicy Sunday Supper

One of my favorite meals to make is an Asian type dish. I don't know that there is really anything authentically Asian about it, but it reminds me of the Americanized versions. It's sort of a stir fry type dish. Anyways, here's what I do.

"Asian" Chicken

Rice or Noodles
1 chicken breast
Vegetable or Olive Oil
Various Vegetables - Sunday I used:
-1/4 onion chopped
- peas
- 1/2 green pepper sliced
- baby carrots - cut into 1/4ths
- 4 chili peppers
Various spices - What I used Sunday
- Garlic Powder
-Hot Madras Curry Powder
- Garam Masala
- Black Pepper
- Salt
- Cloves
Soy Sauce
Spiracha Hot Chili Sauce (optional - well really, everything in this recipe is optional)

Yeah, there aren't very many measurements - it's all about making it to your tastes. In this occasion I added way too much of the Chili Sauce - I couldn't finish mine, it was too hot for me. I usually go light on the Garlic and Salt and focus more on the other spices. Not sure if I like having the carrots in there - I would probably do broccoli, but the men in my house don't really care for it. Anyways on to the rest of the "recipe"

Prepare the rice or noodles.
But some oil in a skillet. Throw in the vegetables. Defrost chicken if you need to. Add Soy sauce and spices to vegetables. Cook until cooked through. Remove vegetables from pan. Place chicken on skillet. Cook until browned, flip and repeat. Either removing chicken, or doing it right in the pan - cut chicken into small chunks. Add some more spices if desired. Cook until chicken is cooked through. Add the vegetables back to the skillet. Let cook together for a few minutes. Add the Chili Sauce. Serve over rice or noodles.

Here is the result from Sunday night.

Like I said, it turned out entirely too spicy for my liking. And I didn't even try to put the Chili Sauce on for Ohlen - I took his portion out before I added it.