Health kick

I’ve been on a serious health kick lately. I really don’t know how these things happen. One day I’m stressed out and eating everything in sight and the next day I’m super happy and healthy. Well, I’ve been happy and healthy for 5 days straight now (is it sad that I’m counting?) and I am loving this feeling!! I think the key for me is to plan to make food I’m truly excited about. Planning insures that I’m not winging some random flavorless meal and also makes me have something to look forward to (because I know what’s coming!).  For example the cheesecake brownies I made yesterday helped me easily say no to dessert after Adam and I had a glass of wine at Church last night, and I was also able to pass by dozens of bakeries on our walk around town today for the same reason. I knew I had a great little healthy-ish treat waiting for me at home so it was all good. With that said, I’ve also been trying to truly listen to my cravings instead of eating “what I’m supposed to” (this mostly implies for snacks). The result? I’ve been eating better than the week prior to that and a lot less cranky :) Lastly this healthy attitude applied even to exercise for me this week. I missed my workouts on Monday and Tuesday but instead of obsessing over that, I just let it go and made sure to add a few extra minutes on Wednesday-Saturday (I still haven’t gone to the gym today… hopefully I’ll make it there, but if I don’t, I’m sure that means I’ll be doing something else productive like planning for the week ahead and that’s important too!). I attempted to go for a 6 mile run on Saturday but quickly got bored and unmotivated. Instead of beating myself up and trying to talk myself into finishing “what I planned” I ran half-way to my destination (3 miles), took a little break and then ran another 1/2 mile up hill (man that was tough!) and finally finished my workout by jumping on an elliptical at my gym at home for 20 minutes. I worked up a sweat, burnt a lot of calories and felt great afterwords. That’s all I can ask of myself!

Anyways, this intro got a little too long. I have Friday’s eats for you! Friday was such a wonderful (eating) day that despite it being Sunday already, I want to share it with you. Hope your weekend was lovely. Mine definitely was :)

Breakfast started with a great bowl of PB&J oats. I’ve made a variation of this combo before but I think Friday’s oats were the best thus far (thank you, Inna, for reminding me of PB&J oats :) ). In the bowl: 1/2 cup rolled oats made with 1/2 cup of vanilla soy milk, 1/2 cup of water, 1/2 banana + a handful of dried blueberries… topped with 1T of Jiff’s natural pb (I really like it! It’s like Barney Butter but with peanuts… nice and smooth) + 1T berry fruit spread (I forget the brand name and am too lazy to get off the couch right now to check ;) ) I love how gooey nut butters get when you top them over warm oatmeal. This was nice and sweet, like dessert for breakfast. Yum!

pb&j oats

the perfect bite

[403 calories]

Since I didn’t make a real dinner on Thurday, there were no leftovers to take for lunch. I know some people hate leftovers but most of the times I really like them (the times when the meal is delicious) because I don’t have to think about lunch – it’s already pretty much pre-made for me. Well, we were running low on groceries and I really didn’t want a random uninspired salad, but after a quick brainstorm I came up with this little combo: chicken quesadilla (used 2 TJ’s low carb whole wheat flour tortillas, 2 oz grilled chicken + 1oz Cabot 50% reduced fat cheddar, all toasted in a toaster oven at work) + veggies on the side. It was SO satisfying. This was a great lunch!

chicken quesadilla with baby carrots + grape tomatoes on the side

mmm queso :)

[330 calories]

Mid-afternoon I decided to make Friday a Cookie Friday, just like Tina :) Good call! I was a happy bee for the rest of the work day, despite the fact that I had to work a little late :evil:

Paradise Bakery cookie + coffee

choc chip cookie closeup

[326 calories, incl. coffee]

For dinner I’ve decided to use some more of the Gimme Lean sausage I had left since making this dish. I fooled my husband once into thinking this was real sausage. This time I decided to go with Ellie Krieger’s recipe for beef and bulgur stuffed zucchini, subbing Gimme Lean sausage for beef. I saw her make this on her show a few weeks ago, and it looked like the perfect way to use up some of that “sausage” (and it did work quite well). Hollowing the zucchini was kind of fun! I was in a very relaxed mood so I found it almost therapeutic… I don’t, however, suggest making this dish when you’re in a hurry or very hungry. On Friday I was taking my time (munched on a few unpictured cashews to tide my hunger) and giggling at pretty zucchini balls I was making. Don’t they look cool?

hollowed zucchini

Here is the final dish.

stuffed zucchini

[223 calories]

I found this meal to be pretty creative in its form (de-constructed I guess it’s just bulgur, beef and zucchini with tomato sauce). It was fun; I enjoyed making and eating it, but I’d say it wasn’t mind blowing amazing. I will not be saving this recipe for future use. I like to be truly excited about what I’m eating!

Dinner was super low in calories (although VERY filling) so after a little while I got hungry again and I munched on this Kashi chocolate coconut bar + an unpictured pistachioats cookie and an apple (not all eaten at once – we went to bed very late).

img_4556

[120 calories + 146 calories for the cookie with apple]

Total calories eaten: 1643

Oh and last thing I did want to mention is that I was listening to Jillian Michael’s podcast today and she said they brought Daniel from season 7 of the Biggest Loser back to the ranch for season 8. I think that’s SO cool! The kid lost over 100 lbs already but definitely needs to lose more. I’m very happy that the producers did this. Any other fans of the show? I can’t wait for the next season… it’s totally one of my guilty pleasures!  All right all right, I think that will do it for this post! “See you” later :D

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19 comments to Health kick

  • Hi Elina! It was definitely a day of healthy eats for you, especially that dinner.
    And thanks for stopping by my blog :)

  • I love when healthy eating kicks take over! They just make you feel so much happier and energetic! :)

  • It’s not sad that you are counting at all! It is inspiring to me that you’ve sort of naturally been hitting your stride. I’m feeling really good about this upcoming week and I’m further inspired by reading this uplifting post :)

  • sister inna

    i wish i was on a healthy eating kick… it’s so cool you have a full kitchen at your work that you can make stuff like that quesadilla if you want to. i want somethign cheezy now lol
    i like that devil face emoticon too it scared me for a second >:)

  • That’s cool about the BL!! I agree, I wish he would have stayed around longer.

    How wonderful that you were able to “let go” and enjoy your workout. I think planning is so key, but learning to be flexible and not beat ourselves up is just as important because life happens! Great job, you are very inspiring! :)

  • go you on the health-kick, girl!

    That zucchini dish looks awesome! It’s on my list of “things to make SOON!”

  • I loved reading this post. I feel like I need a kick in the arse lately. I’ve gained a few pounds and its totally killing me mentally! I dont feel like I changed anythign with my diet, but maybe I have and havent realized it. But with my wedding now less than 100days away this is NOT the time to be gaining…uggg. I hope I can join this health kick of yours.

    LOVE Ellie’s recipes! I havent tried that one, but they remind me of her greek style stuffed peppers which are AWESOME!

  • K

    People I know in real life don’t understand when I say that I just don’t crave unhealthy foods any more. I’m so used to eating what I eat now that I don’t even like the sounds of “unhealthy” foods. Glad you’re experiencing a similar health kick :)

    That zucchini is AMAZING!

  • Oh wow, what a great way to enjoy zucchini, and those zucchini balls are cute. I need to get a melon baller!

  • I love the wonderful new attitude! I was on a non-health kick because I think I just got bored of everything I was eating. I love the idea of getting excited about meals since I prefer to eat healthier anyways!

    Thanks for the reminder!

  • Elina

    Nabeela, I know where to go now for Indian recipes :)

    Yay, Lara… thanks! Hope your week goes well! I’m in a very positive mood lately – kinda scares me ;)

    Innz, yeah we have a little lunch room with a super crappy toaster oven but still it helped me make this and I’m thankful. It was a great lunch! Hope you got something cheesy today :D

    Sara, yes life happens… I’m trying to roll with it :)

    Shannon, I think the filling was great but the zucchini itself was a bit bland. I’d recommend using some spices (or at least salt + pepper) on and inside the zucchini to boost up the flavor. I think I’ll edit my entry for these suggestions tonight! Let me know how you liked it if you do end up making these.

    K, I have to say I don’t always crave healthy foods but sometimes it’s easier to say no to things than other times. I’m glad I’m being good now and hopefully this health kick will turn into a long term thing :D

    One Healthy Apple, getting excited about the food you eat is really key for me. Plan something fun… and enjoy it! Healthy doesn’t have to be boring and bland. We all know that now! :mrgreen:

  • I love when I get on a health kick :D That’s great that you’re so inspired right now! You have a great attitude.

    Your eats look great, and that stuffed zucchini dish is so creative! I love the melty nut butter over the oats, too–delicious :)

  • Fabulous job with the healthy eating! I hope I can do as well.

    I’m so jealous of the Paradise Bakery cookie. They don’t have them here in MN. One of the foods I miss most from the west.

  • That zucchini looks awesome and so does the cookie!

    Do you listen to the Jillian Michaels podcasts? I think you’d like them.

  • Elina

    Alison, those cookies are a blessing and a curse… they sure are delicious though ;)

    Heather, I actually started listening to them after seeing your post and I DO love them. Jillian is awesome! :)

  • Paradise cookies are my FAVORITE!!! Look so good =)

  • I didn’t hear that about Daniel, but it’s such great news! I thought it was sad that both him and Carla had partners who didn’t want to be there and took them down. I’m so glad he’s getting another shot at it.

  • Mary

    Hey! I’m on a random health kick, too, and feeling great about it. Mine has lasted 12 days now – I relate to the counting! I was feeling so good about it that I wanted to read about other peoples’ healthy good times, too, so I googled “health kick”. And found you! Thank you for the inspiration, and recipies.

  • Elina

    Oh wow, Mary – that’s pretty cool. Congrats on your health kick!! :) Hope you keep at it, so that number grows ;)

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