Aug 31, 2010

10-Day Real Food Challenge: Planning and Shopping

Since we chose September 1st as a start date for the 10-Day Real Food Pledge, we had to so some planning and shopping to prepare ourselves.

Surprisingly, Y (the boyfriend) was totally on board with this. As he pointed out, many times, this is pretty close to how we eat currently. Our meals are based around fresh meats and veggies. It just would get us to think a lot harder about the choices we make for late night snacks, convenience foods and sweeteners. Had I asked Y to do this before he moved in with me, I'm sure it would have been a much bigger struggle as he subsisted on his so-called "bachelor's diet" of subs, frozen pasta meals and potato chips.

As we sat down to make a plan for the next 10 days, we looked through our pantry and freezer to see what we could use and what we had to buy. I have class a few nights this week so those nights won't involve such big meals, but we wanted to make sure we both had food to eat without relying on take-out or any other quick fix.

We settled on a meal plan for dinners that looks something like this:

Wednesday - fresh whole wheat pasta with ground turkey, marinara sauce and spinach
Thursday - (class night) hummus and cheese sandwiches on whole wheat bread with baby carrots and celery sticks
Friday - grilled chicken thighs with local corn on the cob, green beans and salad
Saturday - grilled swordfish with sauteed spinach and local corn on the cob

Our shopping list
Agave nectar (to replace Y's sugar in his coffee)
Honey (mmm, on toast, in tea, in yogurt - Honey is LOVE!)
Almond butter
Whole wheat bread (made with honey, not sugar or corn syrup)
Brown Cow Plain Greek Yogurt (see here for a taste test of Greek yogurts)

Salad greens
Slaw mix (for salad topping)
Cherry tomatoes
Alfalfa sprouts
Organic kidney beans (I love kidney beans on salad. And you should too: B-complex, niacin, folate, magnesium, omega-3, calcium, fiber. )
Balsamic vinegar and olive oil (for dressing)

fresh whole wheat pasta
green beans
jarred tomato sauce (normally I make my own but I didn't have time this week, it was our one "cheat"and it's was a compromise we made together. We carefully read each label and chose something with the least ingredients, no sugar and no preservatives. I'm feeling a little guilty though since it's jarred and pre-packaged so I think I'll try to find the time to make the sauce - even a quick sauce with crushed tomatoes and spices would work fine)

Dried figs
Raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
Raw almonds
Raw brazil nuts

Everything else we already had in the pantry or freezer.

Here we go!

Aug 30, 2010

Motivate Monday

Sundays are usually my day to relax, be lazy, spend way too much time on the couch, have an extra cookie. And the result of this is that I’m even more tired and lazy on Mondays. Hmm, not working. Though, I must admit, it seems like a good idea every single time Sunday rolls around again.

Dreaded Monday – back to work, responsibilities and schedules. Screw that old routine. I’m taking Monday back and making it mine. I’m motivating. I’m setting out my goals and I’m going for a mandatory Monday workout. (Mandatory in that I must check in here and report it….every single week. Otherwise, the internet police might get me. See how that works?)

My goals for this week:

Monday – gym
Wednesday - yoga DVD at home
Saturday - bike ride and swimming

Track everything I eat this week – even on the weekend
Think about what I’m eating, whether I’m hungry, what will fuel me
Start the 10-Day Real Food Pledge!

Weekend (long holiday weekend):
Don’t use the weekend away as an excuse to eat and drink anything and everything thinking I can make up for it next week!

Thoughts on last week:
Talked myself out of going to the gym at least twice. What’s the point of that? Why try to punish myself? I felt GREAT after that Monday workout.
Lost over a pound in spite of a trip to Florida and a camping trip. Woo hoo!
I did choose great snacks most days (fruits and veggies) and tracked everything every day. Keep it up.

Aug 29, 2010

Taking the 10 Day Real Food Challenge

Starting on September 1st, my boyfriend and I will be taking the 10-Day Pledge to eat real food and consciously cut out any processed food from our diets.

I took the challenge based on the 100 Days of Real Food blog. I'm not quite ready for that level of commitment, but I am excited for the new start.

I've been many whole foods as I've been making a conscious effort to be mindful of my health and the way different foods make my body feel. I find myself relying on packaged granola bars and frozen pizzas when in a pinch though and I'd love to move away from that dependence.

I'm going to spend a few days planning what I'll need to buy, what I'll want to eat and really commit to this challenge. Check out Lisa Leake's blog and think about making your own pledge to eating real foods, if only for 10 days.

(As an aside, sorry it's been so long since I've posted...I'm sure no one even checks back here anymore. I struggled a bit with the healthy eating/blogging/honesty about my weight and body issues for a while but I find that when I do blog, it gives me some accountability and somewhere to talk about successes and failures. So I'm giving this another go.)