Going with the Flow – Food Edition

Wow, I can’t believe how many of you have been affected by injury! Especially foot injuries. I forgot to mention in my last post about rest, that I typically take a day off exercise every three days. Sometimes it’s four, sometimes it’s two. It usually adds up to two rest days a week, one being an “active rest” with yoga. The other being a “sloth rest” :P

Today was neither kind of rest though because I finally went for a run! I took it easy – only doing 30 minutes at a medium pace. It was another brisk and sunny day out, but for whatever reason the cold air was hard on my lungs. Maybe it’s because I’m sick, but I was wheezing the whole time. I wish I could say I felt energized and refreshed after almost a week off, but to be honest, my legs were kinda dead. I really had to drag myself through it. But I felt a lot more energized and back to my usual self for the rest of the day :) I iced and stretched like a mofo when I came home and I’m happy to report that I’m 100% free of hip pain :D Yay! All that sitting on my butt paid off :P

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that I’ve been fuelling with amazing food – it’s Waffle Wednesday!

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Another Wednesday, another stellar waffle combo. This is two Nature’s Path flax waffles topped with 1/2 cup cottage cheese blended with 2 tsp peanut butter + stevia and a drizzle of maple syrup.

I also have a bit of a confession to make. I’m back on the vitamuffins.

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I will be making my own cheaper muffins again, but damn! A frozen deep chocolate smeared with PB is sooooo good. It’s one of my favourite treats and something I always look forward to!

I did a little more kitchen clearing for dinner tonight. This time using up a can of kidney beans that’s been taking up space in my cupboard for a while. 

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This was just a random throwing together of ingredients that I first sautéed, then baked.

  • 1/2 kg lean ground chicken
  • 1 can red kidney beans
  • 1 onion
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 tomato
  • 2 very large mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup salsa
  • 1/2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika

I decided to eat it as a dip, so I baked some ezekiel tortilla wedges with a little olive oil, kosher salt and paprika.

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With the last of my leftover dazzled carrots with pears and balsamic. 

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Aaaalllll together now…

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Yum! I love “active” meals where I get to assemble as I go :)

I also tried out a new-to-me product tonight:

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I think this is new to Canada too? Hopefully this is a sign of things to come! I’d love to try their frozen meals!

Anyways, the stats are okay. High in fibre (yay) and carbs (nay), low in sodium (yay) and protein (nay).

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The ingredients are pretty darn good though.

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Of course,  none of that really matters because this stuff is absolutely delicious!!!

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Something that’s cinnamon flavoured that actually tastes like cinnamon. I ate it with unsweetened vanilla Almond Breeze and a spoonful of vanilla whey powder. The protein powder acted as the “frosting” ;) I really like my shredded wheat soggy and mushy too. I kinda like soggy cereal in general.

Moving on…

 

Going with Flow – Food

I talked about going with the flow in terms of exercise yesterday, but today I wanted to talk a little about the other side of the equation – food.

I opened up about previously being rigid with my exercise schedule, so I guess it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I was also the same with my eating habits.

I’ve lost 30 lbs since the summer of 2008. I did it by calorie counting and was very successful with it. I figured out my calorie allowance, and stuck to it every day. The number on the scale went down every single week up until my transition into maintenance.

I remember my first vacation during that period. It was a trip up north for a family reunion. I obsessed for weeks beforehand, worrying about how I was going to eat while I was away. I stuck to the same safe foods at home, and the thought of not being in control of that terrified me.

I packed up a cooler full of food to bring with me, but of course, that only did so much. I ended up at a big family function without my backup food. I was a vegetarian then and the main course was meat. I was told by several people not to worry – there was potato salad for me to eat.

I was hungry and the thought of having to fill up on a plate of potatoes swimming in mayonnaise made me to freak out. I was going to go over my calorie number! I wouldn’t lose weight that week! My pants won’t fit!

Well, we are all still here, so I can tell you the world did not end that day :P

I like to think I’ve come a long way from then. I’ve learned that sometimes, when it comes to food, you’ve just gotta go with the flow. We can’t always be in control of what we eat, and it isn’t the end of the world if we have potato salad for a meal.

Looking back, I can see that a lot of what should have been enjoyable social situations for me were fraught with feelings of anxiety over the food being served. I would worry about how much beer I was drinking instead of laughing with friends. Or worrying if restaurants would have low-calorie choices, when I should have focused on who I was at the restaurant with.

I think my latest trip to Windsor was a real accomplishment for me. I snacked on things like crackers and chips, and ate what everyone else was eating. When given the option, I would always pick the healthiest thing possible. I listened to my hunger cues, and snacked when I knew I really needed it. Sure there was some over-consumption, but hell, that’s what vacations are for!

I also want to tack on here that it’s important to be up front with people about your eating habits. I never told anyone at that family function I was trying to lose weight, so they didn’t understand why I was so unhappy with the choices. Since then, my family and friends have learned about my new eating habits and have done a great job at respecting them. My mom always makes sure she has some healthy foods on hand whenever I go home :)

Questions of the day:

1. How do you deal with eating in social situations? Do you bring back-up food? Do you veto certain restaurants?

2. Cereal – crunchy or soggy?

 

Okay, it’s time for bed! I’ve got the next two days off and a wide open schedule! I’m sucking it up tomorrow and trying out a zumba class. I’ll be back with a full report :)

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Posted on October 22, 2009, in Challenges, Lessons Learned, Workouts and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 25 Comments.

  1. I think when it comes to going with the flow with food it’s all about having educated oneself to know the healthiest options from what’s available. Right now I’m on a very strict diet for my contest-prep so I bring a cooler everywhere. Like your experience, my family & friends are now familiar with my eating “style” and are almost always quite accommodating.

    Cereal.. I like a little bit of both. Soggy with a crunch! :)

  2. This is something I’m still learning to do. It takes time and I defininitely have my freak out moments where I am not thinking clearly, but it’s gotten so much better since moving to Japan. :)

    Glad to know I’m not alone.

  3. Awesome post, Susan! I totally agree! GO with the flow…worrying and getting upset over it will just distract you from normal, intuitive eating. Also, it makes for very awkward social situations, in which you not only ruin your own mood, but others as well.

    In social settings, I might give my suggestions, but I go by the majority, and I never bring back-up food.
    Also, I don’t really eat/like cereal. Haha, I know, scandalous!

  4. I try not to limit myself too much when it comes to food, because you’re right, there’s no reason to worry about an off meal once in awhile. I do sometimes try to choose places with a good selection of foods I like, but I firmly believe that you can almost always find at least something to eat at any restaurant. Sometimes you have to go off menu, but that’s okay.

    I’m a bit cereal obsessed. I like both crunchy and soggy depending on the cereal. For shredded wheat I love heating up my milk and then adding the shredded wheat so it’s a little crunchy on top but nice and soggy on the bottom. Mmm. And that Kashi stuff is so good, isn’t it?

  5. Mmmm, I love waffle wednesdays :)

    In social situtations, I tend to go with the flow so I don’t seem like picky and stuck-up.. Most restaurants have some healthy options, though.

    And as for cereal- CRUNCHY!!! I’m obsessed with Kashi Go Lean Crunch. TRY IT!

  6. Believe it or not i don’t eat cereal anymore. Tell me that a year ago and i never would believe it. Cereal was my security blanket for some reason. Now i don’t crave it at all. If it want it i have it. But i usually don’t crave it. My tastes frequently change. I think it goes with my mood. I will eat similar for a month. then it will change, funny. I do like a crunch to my cereal though.

  7. Foot injuries are my nemisis… plantar fasciitis / heel spurs :(

    I’m scared to try vitamuffins, I don’t want to find another expensive food that I’ll want to throw in the cart every week!

    Cereal – crunchy

    Food in social situations – usually smaller servings of whatever everyone else is eating… I figure it’s not the end of the world and I don’t want people to think I’m a “food snob” or picky/rude.

  8. Re: social situations. I usually wind up having one “social meal” a week. Usually, I order what I want and remind myself that 1 meal out of 21 in a week is not going to ruin my life…and I find that usually it has a positive effect in keeping me on track the other 20 meals of the week.

    Cereal? Crunchy. Definitely.

  9. Cereal: Crunchy for sure. I HATE milk in my cereal. That;s why I love mixing it with cottage cheese, so it retains it’s crunch better.

    Venturing into the real world of other people’s food still freaks me out. I am getting better, but I idea of maintaining rather than losing or gaining weight is a hard concept for me to grasp. In my mind, I’m either losing weight or getting fat, even though I know that’s not necessarily the case.I would love to hear more about how you made the transition into maintenance.

    Have a great day! xoxo

  10. So, did you give that chocolate muffin recipe a try? If so, I guess I missed that post. I’m curious to hear how you liked them. If they are not holding up to your vitamuffins, I can try to tweak it a little more to get it closer.

    • Hey Seth! I actually picked up that box of vitamuffins after I got back from vacay. Haven’t had the chance to try out your recipe yet, it’s at the top of my baking list! :D

  11. BTW, with the cereal question… my wife hates soggy cereal so much, she will dip her only put a little bit of it at a time in a bowl, so that she is able to eat it all before any of it gets the least bit soggy.

    I, on the other hand, will sometimes intentionally eat it slower to soften the cereal… not quite to the point of being super soggy, but just softer.

  12. Excellent post. I was just thinking about this very issue the other day. You just write about it so much better than I am able to :D

    Love that Kashi cereal! The Autumn Harvest flavor of that is amazing as well and my favorite. Hope that comes your way, too!

    I find success in social situations to be a mixed bag for me. Sometimes I follow my plan, sometimes I don’t. However, what I have done is ditch the guilt if I don’t follow the plan. I know that 1 day of eating poorly won’t make me gain back 100 pounds, and if it puts on a couple, well – I know what to do to get it off now.

    I have been wanting to try zumba, too! I am going to in the New Year. Latin music always makes me dance (a la Elaine Bettis) and makes my husband laugh.

  13. Right now I am pretty easy going food wise. I try to pick healthy choices when I can and when I can’t I go with what I enjoy. For many years I was miserable and grumpy eating things I didn’t like because they were lower in calories and I decided it was a lot healthier to eat well 80-90% of the time and enjoy yourself for the remainder! In life family dinners, weddings, and parties happen and I want to enjoy them!

  14. I watch what I eat pretty religiously throughout my work week. But on the weekends, if some kind of event comes up or we take the kids out for dinner, I always permit myself to enjoy. I love food and to completely restrict myself from the things I love would make me miserable and unhappy. I will enjoy what I want (in moderation of course) knowing that this is why I excercise and eat properly the other 6 days a week.

    I never bring back up food anywhere. I just try to make the best choices from what is offered and move on from there.

    Isn’t that Kashi the BEST?! I’ve been hooked on it since about May. I go through two boxes a week – at least. I eat it for breakfast…and sometimes grab a handful or two to satisfy my sweet tooth at night.

  15. 1. How do you deal with eating in social situations? Honestly, sometimes I avoid them. I basically never eat out anymore, and going out for drinks with friends results in me having 1 or 2 light beers and calling it a night. Since this is not conducive to living like a normal human, I’m learning how to deal. When I do go out to eat, which is rare, I order the healthiest option and when I’m at a family function or party with friends I try to stick with the healthier foods available, whic h sometimes isn’t much.

    2. Cereal – crunchy or soggy? On the way to sogginess, inbetween.

    Dinner looks so good!!

  16. Another great post!! I try to bring my own foods but I usually indulge in a little bit of what every one else is having.

    And I like soggy cereal! :)

  17. I do either or when it comes to cereal…depends on my mood. Probably crunchy, over soggy most of the time.

    Ahh…food situations in public. A BIG deal for me for many reasons. Most people in my life know that I try to make healthy choices but also that I like to eat LOL so I guess I try to decide ahead of time if I’m going to make the healthiest choice or if it’ll be a “splurge” occasion (hate that word, really). At people’s houses there is usually at least semi-healthy options, or I bring something to share that I know I’ll feel good about eating.

    I need to be better about this in general, though, especially with the holidays coming up or I will gain back what I’ve recently lost, I know it. I do at times veto restaurants and suggest ones I know I can get something lighter but no one has ever minded that.

    (sorry for the book of a comment! sheesh)

  18. i love the soggy cereal too!

    i think its great to be open with people, because most people do want to eat healthier so they can feel better too. i just try not to let what other people think bother me – if they want to make fun or be snide about what i eat, its a sign of THEIR insecurity, not mine.

    LOVE YOU SUSAN!

  19. Oh Vitamuffins – they are HARD to go without! I’m bad though and will enable your addiction by saying, YUM to that snack!!

    Shredded wheat = good soggy. All others? Crunchy!!

    Eating situations can be tricky! I don’t eat meat but I also don’t want to be a burden so I tend to just forge for myself. I always take emergency food with me wherever I go just in case. 99.9% of the time it’s never a big deal, thank goodness!

  20. I always bring emergency food, where I know eating will be involved. Most of the times I am aware of healthy options, but the hardest thing for me is NOT KNOWING what is inside the food. If its a big hodge podge of ingredients. Not knowing the salt content and a fear of H.F.C.S. is enough for me to stay away. That being said, I often do eat the food that is provided when I can make do.

    And LOVE LOVE LOVE kashi cinnamon harvest wheat. I often crumble a couple bisquits over my pumpkin oats. Delish!

  21. Wowwee have you come a long way since this post! You totally enjoy food without a care (think: croissants etc :-))

    I am guilty of carrying emergency snacks on my person and on trips. Usually my trip-food is for breakfast, and some snacks. Then the other meals I eat as normally as I can and definitely enjoy the local fare. So bringing my own stuff is just a small amount of damage control.

    I’m learning that if given a few weeks or months before the next trip, I can regain my footing in healthy eating and lose whatever weight I might have gained. But it’s really hard when I have back to back to back trips- then I can never catch up. This year was ROUGH>

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