Sunday, July 19, 2009

Product of the Week (or until I find something I like better)

I have found the answer to my summertime ice cream cravings. Del Monte Fruit Chillers frozen fruit sorbet treat. You find them in the grocery store next to the canned fruit and applesauce and crap and they are seriously delicious.
They are little tubes of pureed fruit (2 flavors - strawberry and grape berry) that you put in your freezer and - Ouila! tasty summer frozen treat. They are even kind of good for you. The first ingredient is fruit puree and there is no artificial flavors or corn syrup. Each tube has only 55 calories, 0 fat, 25% of your daily vitamin C intake, and even a gram of fiber (every little bit counts they say. Each tube also counts for 1/2 serving of fruit. Heck for 55 calories you could eat two, have a full serving of fruit, and not feel like crap afterward. Hell, yeah!
OK, so they're not rich creamy full fat ice cream. But they're also not going to make your ass look like rich creamy full fat ice cream either. So go have and extra hard workout and enjoy one of these (or two if you're nasty) little jewels as a reward. Del Monte Fruit Chillers kick serious diet ass.

* for the record these are not strictly "clean eating" but like I said 80/20. And since these have no artificial flavors or sweeteners or corn syrup, I don't think the addition of a tiny amount of food grade dye is going to kill you.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Clean Eating or Clean Off My Rocker?

It happened like this. I was cruising the magazine rack at my local Target because it would appear that I have replaced my addiction to food with an addiction to glossy magazines. And since I just got back from a 2 week trip in which I traveled over 3300 miles, I had fully exhausted my stash. So there I am looking for something new and I find Vogue Decor (didn't care for it), National Geographic Travel (always on the lookout for the next great destination), and Clean Eating (Loved it!) I wasn't really expecting to, like it - that is, but turns out it's not totally for sandal wearing, granola eating, tree huggers. I will own to two out of the three, but let it be known that I love my fashion too much to wear sandals, at least of the Jesus Creeper variety. And since I am stuck in a dieting rut and my energy has bottomed out I was open to trying anything.
I like it. So far. Clean Eating is not really a diet, which I like. It's more of a way of eating. Pay attention to what you eat. Eat whole unprocessed foods, organic when possible. And learn how to prepare healthy meals for yourself instead of relying on restaurants where you don't really have control over what your eating.
I love that I get to eat yogurt, which I have been doing already. And I was skeptical about substituting honey and/or agave nectar for sugar, but I like it. I don't know if I can completely cut out the white sugar but I have definately cut it down drastically. I have switched from white flour products to whole grains and the best part is that my kids haven't bitched about it. Amazing! I'm not so sure about the quoina and bulgar (exotic grains) not so much because I'm afraid to try something new, but because I'm just not sure how practical it will be to find it in my tiny tiny town. And eating locally is a big factor. I have made friends at the farmer's market.
I've been doing this for about a week now and while I haven't really dropped any pounds (I haven't actually lowered my calorie intake) I have already noticed the energy going up and my mood improving as well. That was an unexpected but totally welcome bonus.
So, the bottom line, after a week of clean eating is this. I don't know if I can stick to it 100% of the time, but I have resolved to try to stick to an 80%/20% type of thing. The 20% allows for life and other crap that gets in the way and as long as I don't go crazy and start snorting Pixie Sticks it should be OK. I liked the grilled pork with peaches, but the raw hummus - not so much. So check it out, if you're looking for something new. Or even if you're not, it's totally worth the effort. Besides who can say no to an eating plan that includes lemon shortcakes with strawberries, blueberries, and fresh cream?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Not Too Bad For You Summer Chicken Salad

1 lb each boneless skinless chicken breast and thighs, grilled (I like the quickness of the George Foreman)
1/4 cup diced white onion
1/2 cup chopped or slivered Almonds
1, 1/2 cup chopped strawberries
1/4 cup low fat mayo
1/2 cup fat free sour cream

Mix together, refrigerate for one hour. If making ahead of time save the strawberries to add at last minute. You could serve this in whole wheat pitas, but I like it just on it's own.
To carry it into the fall substitute red grapes for the strawberries and walnuts or pecans for the almonds.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sum, Sum, Summertime

Reasons why Summer rocks for the dieter

1. Fresh Vegis from the garden or farmers market.
2. Swimming is considered wonderful aerobic exercise.
3. Likewise walking on the sand gives you a rockin' ass.
4. When it's so hot outside who feels like eating anything heavy.
5. It's way better to feel tired from gardening/playing outside/ swimming with the kids than because you logged an hour on the treadmill.
6.When it's time to hydrate - Iced Tea on the deck.
7. Yes it's hot out, but it stay light until like 9:00, so take a walk in the evening.
8. Fishing build tri-ceps muscles.
9. Fish is totally good for you, and when you catch it yourself it's even more delicious.
10. A fake tan that actually looks good. Neutrogena Spray On Self Tanner. Even coverage, not arrange. Perfect for shorts that I can finally wear.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Back in the World

Well, I'm back from vacation. Actually I was back a week ago, but it's taken me this long to figure out how to get back in the swing of things. Have you ever noticed that? That you often need a vacation from your vacation. And boy was this a vacation. Over a period of two weeks my husband and I drove 3,300 miles and spent about 44 hours in the truck. I could tell you where all the best rest areas and gas stations are all across the mid-west. Unfortunately I could also tell you where you can get the best doughnuts, deli sandwich, cheese curds what have you.
But finally I'm home. I thought that it would be relatively easy to get back in the groove. Not so much. Thankfully I (somehow) managed to not gain any weight while gone. I didn't lose any either (I was averaging about 3lbs/week) but a vacation is a vacation after all. However I also realized that I hadn't cooked and actual meal in three weeks. Turkey sandwiches and salads don't count. What's more I didn't even want to cook, which I usually love. It was like I'd left my whole identity in the U.P. I didn't really know who or what I was. Damn this summer limbo!
So I did the only thing I could think to do. I went to the grocery store. Now, of course I had been in the grocery store while on vacation. But my list was more like grapes to go with the cheese to go with the wine, some nice crusty bread, wine, and charcoal to cook the beer brats. So I re-introduced myself to my favorite neighborhood grocery store. Spent some time in the produce section. Loitered near the fresh fish. Cruised the perimeter and filled my cart with fresh healthy items. And the best part was, when I got home, I really didn't feel like I was missing all that much. Sure I enjoyed the beers and wine and cheese and brats, but I really didn't miss them all that much. I was too busy enjoying the fresh blueberries that were on sale. Love them. And the Homemade pizza margharita I made using fresh ripe tomatoes, spinach, and a little bit of Parmesan cheese and a tiny bit of mozzarella to hold it all together. We've made breakfast burritos with whole wheat tortillas, turkey sausage, egg whites and all the fresh peppers and onions you can hold.
So I think I've finally gotten it. I think I'm over the vacation slump. Now if I can just figure out how to get my mojo back at the gym . . .