2012 Week by Week

Month: January, 2012

This week’s menu

We have a lot of leftovers from last week and some other things going on, so this week’s menu is subject to change.

Monday – pork chops, beans & rice, salad

Tuesday – leftovers

Wednesday – cabbage casserole at a potluck

Thursday – squash ravioli with meat sauce, salad

Friday – salmon, green beans, sweet potato

Breakfasts – butternut squash frittatas with leftover chicken

Lunches – half romaine salad with homemade ranch dressing, grilled chicken, and hard boiled eggs



Week 5: Lean protein at every meal

My list of goals for this year originally had weeks 5 through 8 as maintenance weeks. The thought was that the first four goals were so different from what I had been doing before that I would need some time to get used to them before moving on to other things. Now that I’m in it, though, I realize that not having new goals these next few weeks will probably not help me. As a result, the next four goals are pretty basic.

This week I will focus on eating lean protein at every meal (for now I’ll make an exception for my mid-day snack). It is very easy to knock myself out of the more veggies rule when I can just toss a quick cheese sandwich together and call that lunch. By trying to get protein into each meal I will have to prepare better which will help reinforce the good dietary habits I’ve started already.

Update on previous goals:
1: No sugar – I’ve been enjoying a bit of homemade jam and some homemade chocolate syrup in my greek yogurt as a snack lately. It’s not nearly as much sugar as I used to eat in a day, so I’m letting it slide for now. Social eating is still an almost total failure.

2: Veggies with each meal – This one has been much more difficult to keep up with. When our menu for the week falls apart the veggies tend to disappear. This more than anything else requires good prepapration.

3: Walk every day – I’ve missed a few days with this but I know I can get back to it.

4: Intense workout once per week – Despite my weird knee setback I was still sore after my modified workout on Friday, so I know I can be creative and still see results. My challenge will be not procrastinating my opportunities away.

No CSA this week

My farmer is taking the week off, so there was no CSA pickup this week. Menu soon.

That was unexpected

After a week of procrastinating I finally got up the courage to try one of Zuzana’s new workouts. About 2 minutes in I could no longer ignore that my right knee was really unhappy. Like stop if you feel pain unhappy. Now I’m sitting here with frozen peas on my knee wondering how to make this better. Any ideas?

Week 4: One serious workout per week

First a recap:

Week 1 – No sugar
I’ve been doing fairly ok with this one. It’s still challenging to not resort to sugary breakfasts, snacks, or treats throughout the day. I’ve been giving myself permission to have a sugary dessert after dinner some nights.  I’ll need to cut sugar out completely in a couple of weeks, so these will go away.

Week 2 – Veggies at every meal
Most of the time I’m doing great with this one, but occasionally I have lunch or an afternoon snack in a hurry without taking the time to figure out a vegetable. The key to this one is preparation. If I set myself up well on the weekend then I’m much more successful during the week.

Week 3 – Walk every day
This went pretty well last week. I only missed one day due to rain. My hope was that I would get my walk in during the day, but it has happened late at night every time. Fortunately this means my husband (aka My Only Blog Reader) can join me, so that’s nice.

So what is week 4? This week I’ll ramp the activity level up a bit by adding in one intense workout per week. My original intention had been to do a workout from Bodyrock.tv, but there has been some kind of weird drama over there and the new workout leaders aren’t as awesome as Zuzana was. I may root through the archives, or I may follow along with her new project over on her Facebook page.

Why just one per week? Because I’m really out of shape and one should be enough for now. Also, because even though these workouts are around 15 minutes or less I still need a couple of hours to recover from them (read: nap). I don’t want to set unreasonable time expectations for myself. I’d like to set myself up for success.

So that’s this week! Wish me luck!

Veggies & menu week 3

CSA week 3

I’m calling this week 3 because it is the third Saturday in January. This week we got spinach, red leaf lettuce, tatsoi, cabbage, sweet potatoes and turnips. We also have quite a lot of leftovers from last week. I am still learning how to shop for this new way of eating.

The menu:

Saturday – pork chops, beans & rice, salad
Sunday – steak, sweet potatoes, spinach artichoke dip
Monday – ravioli w/meat sauce, salad
Tuesday – leftovers
Wednesday – out
Thursday – at a meeting
Friday – salmon, roasted turnips, sauteed cabbage

Breakfasts: huevos rancheros with peppers and tatsoi. Lunches: chicken, bok choy and zucchini hot plate (see the free download of the Well Fed cookbook).

Check back tomorrow for my next weekly challenge!

Week 3: Walk every day

Now that the major dietary goals are dialed in it is time to turn my attention to my activity goals. I’ve been a major sloth lately. It’s time to get back in the habit of moving. This week I’m going to start going for a walk every day. My neighborhood has a mile long loop that I usually walk, so I’ll start there.

CSA veggies

CSA veggies

I enjoy shopping at our local farmer’s market in the summer which makes going back to the grocery store in the winter a bit tough. Fortunately, there is a local farmer who runs a winter CSA for folks like us who don’t mind a pile of greens. I’ll be posting photos of my veggie hauls each week with a menu.

This week we have white turnips with their greeens, a big sweet potato, red chard, green leaf lettuce, bok choy, purple kale, and arugula.


Saturday – steak, broccoli, mashed potatoes, arugula salad
Sunday – cranberry apple stuffed pork loin, green beans, kale
Monday – roast chicken with root veggies and turnip greens, leftover noodles
Tuesday – chicken salad sandwiches
Wednesday – out
Thursday –  sausages, cheese pierogies, chard (plus sauerkraut for husband)
Friday – salmon, baked sweet potatoes, bok choy

Lunches will be mostly this chicken and mushroom cauli-rice dish I found through Chowstalker. Breakfasts will be some variation on an egg and veggie and cheese frittata. Snacks will be leftover  pork and/or chicken and some raw veggies.

Tomorrow I’ll post my goal for next week. The last two are still going strong!

Sugar tantrums

I read a blog post yesterday that gave me some insight into what is happening in my body now that I’ve (mostly) cut out sugar. I say (mostly) because I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve eaten sugar in the past 11 days, whereas before I probably would have been well into my second hand by the end of day 1.

Blog post: Give Your Sugar Tantrums a Time-Out

This is what a typical food day looks like for me right now:

9:30am – egg & veggie breakfast
noon – chicken & veggie lunch
3pm – snack, probably a quesadilla and carrot sticks
5:30pm – can’t wait until dinner, need food (might eat a pb sandwich plus more cold veggies)
8ish pm –  dinner with husband
10ish pm – might pop some popcorn

I feel kind of hungry after every meal. What I suspect is that I’m not eating quite enough at my major meals, but that also my brain is throwing a giant sugar tantrum for the entire day. I am trying to avoid giving it sugar, but I am resorting to some grains in the afternoon so that’s probably not helping.

The few times I’ve eaten sugar thus far have all been in social settings. I’m using the social setting as an excuse to indulge in something I really want instead of doing the right thing and turning it down. This giving up sugar thing is hard!

Still, I feel good that I’m successfully avoiding the zillions of small sugary things I used to grab for convenience all day. The increased veggies plan is going to take some work but I’m doing ok at that one, too.

I’ll talk a bit about meal planning tomorrow.

Veggies for breakfast?

Some people have asked me how I plan to eat vegetables at breakfast time. The answer seems to be omelets or crustless quiches. Here is a recipe that may inspire you to try, too: Egg Cupcakes.