Healthy and Sane

Starting the year right

January 4th, 2010 · 20 Comments · baking, breakfast, chicken, salad, snacks

The second long weekend in a row has come to an end and now it’s time to go back to work in the new year. I want Monday to be the beginning of a better year – I want to come in earlier, be sharper/less distracted while also remembering that it is only work after all. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in things, get frustrated, turn to food. This year will be different. 2010 is going to rock!! 😎

So on this Sunday morning, I decided to make a yummy breakfast. Ever since seeing Lauren of Healthy Food For Living featuring her maple-cranberry muffins with goat cheese filling, I couldn’t stop thinking about them. I happened to have all the ingredients on hand (plain goat cheese and cranberries, which I mixed together for the filling) so it was fate really 😉


The batter was a little on the sweet side, so I’d probably cut down on maple syrup a little next time. Would I need to replace the volume with something else? This is where I usually screw up things! 😳


I love the surprise in the middle! SO good!!


[231 calories]


The breakfast was a bit on the smaller side because I wanted to hit the gym asap. At the gym I ran 4.15 miles (at varying speeds and inclines) + .35 mile walk, then jumped on the stairmaster for 10 minutes and completed the workout with a 10 minute rolling sesh. Great workout! 😀


Mixed greens, grape tomatoes, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, tzatziki, baba ganoush + water


How do you like my fancy cup? Hehe 😆 Our dishwasher is leaking so we’re trying to minimize dishes. This is the only thing I think I can get away with on the blog. The salad was fabulous – the tzatziki and the baba ganoush replaced the dressing, I just took a bit at a time with some lettuce and juicy tomatoes. Yum! 😀


[229 calories]


I could eat pickles all day long, I swear!


Nature’s Pride 12 grain toast with avocado


[140 calories]



I was the first one out, losing $20 :( Thank goodness I brought a Cooking Light magazine to entertain me 😀

I brought some snacks + dinner to entertain me as well 😉


[62 calories]


Leftover pasta alfredo with roasted asparagus, which I’m so happy I brought with me because the boys ordered pizza!




[Total 496 calories]

This PURE chocChip trailmix bar was pretty yummy, although slightly too sweet (I think dates provide sufficient sweetness so they could cut down or eliminate agave nectar). The cacao nibs added a really nice crunch! :)


When we got home I totaled up my calories for the day and realized I still haven’t eaten enough. So I went for some cookie dough


I have yet to try these little cookies baked 😳


[180 calories for 2]

Still not enough calories. 😕 I wasn’t hungry but I grabbed a little pack of roasted almonds, which at 210 calories put me right in my sweet spot.


Total calories consumed: ~1530

Back to work! How are you starting the New Year?

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20 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Evan Thomas

    Those muffins sound sooo good. I’d make a batch in a second if I weren’t the only goat cheese lover here

  • #2 - Estela @ Weekly Bite

    LOVE the idea of goat cheese in a sweet muffin!

  • #3 - Shannon

    looks like a good start to me :) mmm, those muffins were calling my name, too!!

  • #4 - Jess

    I gotta say, I need to take your lead on the work front. I was starting to really stress myself out last night – January is going to be crazy for me at work and it really kept me up! I could NOT turn my brain off and got all stressed because of it. Now I’m just extra tired and annoyed for letting it get to me! You’re right, its JUST work, I need to remind myself of that daily I think.

  • #5 - girlxoxo

    This is my first week back to work and since organization was a big fail in 2009 – I’m working on being super organized for January, daily schedule & everything (blog reading in the morning got included in the routine :-)

  • #6 - Kelly

    So far 2010 has been going pretty well. I gave my house a pretty thorough cleaning and am planning on tackling organizing the pantry next which is so needed. I have routinely bought something I already have on hand because of how disorganized it is.

  • #7 - Good Taste. Healthy Me

    Wow those muffins look sooo yummy! I love stuffed things. :)

  • #8 - Allison

    I enjoy your blog but not the addition of the calorie counts. I completely understand why you are keeping track of calories and think it is great if that is what works for you, but do you need to post them on the blog?


  • #9 - Elina

    Evan – you should still make them! My husband enjoyed them and he’s not obsessed with goat cheese as I am. Plus, I bet they’d freeze well (I made a half batch so there won’t be leftovers here 😆 ).

    Jess – yes, yes – we all need that reminder. It’s one thing to be passionate about work, and another thing to let it ruin your day. Hope your day is better today! 😀

    girlxoxo- I organized my desk this morning too. :)

    Kelly – I SO know what you mean. I go through my cupboards once in a while and find things I didn’t even know we had. Redoing the kitchen will automatically force another re-org project 😀

    Allison – I don’t “need” to post the calories on the blog, but in the past (when I counted) people found these to be helpful. I found them to be helpful on other blogs when I counted calories. I think it also serves 2 additional purchases – 1) it keeps me a little bit more accountable; 2) it shows my readers that low(er) calories do not necessarily mean boring food (that’s why I started the blog in the first place!!). I think calorie counting got a bad rep for some reason recently, and I don’t believe this should be the case. I don’t plan on doing it forever, but since this is my choice at the moment, I figured I’d include some extra numbers for those who may find them useful. I’m sorry if you are bothered by this. I propose to just scroll over that part 😉

  • #10 - Diana @ frontyardfoodie

    Awesome day of food! I’m diggin’ the calorie counting and seeing how well you’re doing. Keep up the good work.

    That salad looks great and what a good idea putting avocado on toast!

  • #11 - megan

    I appreciate your honesty here and I think the calorie counts are helpful for the reasons you cited. I also think it’s great for you to share to importance of geeting enough calories because sometimes that’s overlooked!

  • #12 - Kate G.

    Hey Elina, I wanted to tell you that i support your calorie counting on the blog!

    I know a lot of people are sensitive about it (^^^^^) but you do a good job of keeping it about food as a source of energy rather than a point of obsession or guilt!
    Have a great week!

  • #13 - sister inna

    i’m so impressed you brought your own food to a party!

  • #14 - Jesse

    Are you going to be counting calories again on here? I think I might like that… sometimes I get lost in where calories are hiding. A lot of bloggers used to post their calories of every meal and when I was not eating enough (like really not enough) it helped me to realize how normal people ate. I think it can definitely be a touchy area, but maybe for those people who are sensitive to it, need to realize that there is another side that needs to see that good, healthy amount of food to be consumed. Props, keep it up.

    And yeah, I could eat pickles every day… my roommates totally make fun of me but my mom used to make her own when I was a kid and I’ve loved them over since.

  • #15 - Jena

    Muffins look yummy!!
    Alfredo looks delish!
    Omg those cookies sound so great! Do you cook them or not?!
    I am glad at the end of the day you realized you dint get in enough calories so you made sure to eat more! That is very good!
    You ate so much yummy food whole still staying in your guidelines! Great job and keep it up!

  • #16 - Carly

    Awesome job with your eats and workout :) I think it is great the you totaled your cals and realized you needed to eat more. Too many times people just keep restricting to “save up” or “balance out” for other days. Your body will thank you for taking care of it.

    I didn’t comment yesterday, but I think your resolutions for 2010 sound great! I prefer to think of my resolutions as goals – things I really want to achieve. I try not to set too many because I want them to be attainable. My big one for the year is to run a 1/2 marathon – I’m signed up for the Cleveland race in May :)

  • #17 - Caroline

    Wow, goat cheese and cranberry filling in a muffin? I think you just hit three of my favorite foods in one! Keep up the positive attitude for 2010, it’s contagious! :)

  • #18 - Cristina

    I’ve got the “So Easy” Ellie Krieger cookbook too.

    And yes, I do calorie count. It’s not my favorite, but like you, I feel it keeps me accountable. And I also try to plan ahead, at least one day in advance, so the “what to eat” thing doesn’t turn into an all out binge fest.

    I know I need snacks, and I’ll have two snacks plus one “treat”. Today I had a small bag of Starbucks gummy candy for 140c. I don’t want to eat candy, but I didn’t have an afternoon snack (I really needed it) and I was tempted. I need to figure out how to go around giving into temptations.


  • #19 - Elina

    Diana, Megan and Kate G – thank you. Thank you for your support. I’m trying to stay honest on the blog and since calorie counting is part of my life right now, I think I should share it.

    Innz – I really don’t have a problem doing stuff like that unless it’s with people I don’t know. I wasn’t sure what the food plan was and I hate being hungry so this really worked out. I wasn’t even slightly tempted by the pizza (it helped that I said I didn’t want any when they were ordering so they got all these meat toppings. Eww.)!!!

    Jesse – yes, I’m going to calorie count on the blog for a while. Mmm, pickles!!! I think my sister will support this habit of mine (and yours 😉 ).

    Jena – I haven’t cooked those cookies yet. I’ve just been grabbing a little round and eating the dough. I’m sure they’re delicious baked. I’ll try it one day!!

    Carly – I am definitely realizing that my instinct is to eat less than what I should be (since cleaner food is lower calories I’m naturally eating a lot less) so calorie counting surprisingly is also helping me eat enough. Yay for half marathons. Good luck with your training!!

    Christina – I have random healthy snacks on me or around me at all times (in my purse, in my office drawers, the fridge, at home) so that usually helps with hunger. Sometimes I crave something else, something cheeky (way worse than your gummy candy, my dear) so I just go for it. Despite calorie counting, I’m allowing 2 treats (with unknown caloric content, which of course means it’s a lot) and 2 meals out (without calorie counting). This should give me enough flexibility so I don’t feel deprived. Have you tried something like that? A few rules that are a bit more flexible?

  • #20 - There is a standup comedian in my house!

    […] (straight from the container) and then decided to stop the madness and made a few cookies (from this cookie […]