I've missed a few days in the Blog-tember Challenge but I'm not going to beat myself up about it. One of them was a vlog, which I don't think I'm quite ready for, although if Bailey Jean does Blog-tember again next year, I just may go for it.
One day was to tell about the craziest adventure I've ever been on. I think that would have to be what we lovingly call our "Vacation from Hell" when we drove from the SF Bay Area to Southern California (about a 7 to 8 hour drive) to attend my husband's family reunion. That's definitely a blog post of its own and I want to get the pictures to go with it so that will have to wait.
One day was to tell how I de-stress and take care of myself. That, of course, would be mostly reading and working in my scrap room. It is my happy place and I love spending hours and hours there creating things and trying out new ideas. I've talked about that a lot already so I won't bore you anymore just now.
Today's prompt is something that simplifies my life. I am attempting again to lose some weight, well, a lot of weight, but we'll start with some weight and hope it continues. I have tried many different diets and some have worked and some have not. I was very successful with Weight Watchers several years ago but life got in the way and I gained it back plus a few more. Then I found Hungry Girl. Lisa Lillien also lost weight using Weight Watchers but has taken it a step further and created the Hungry Girl Diet.
The thing that makes this one so simple is that she gives you a definite meal plan to follow every day for four weeks. It is a little stricter the first week and she gives you three choices for each meal. There are recipes in the book and helpful swaps so if you don't like a particular vegetable or something, she tells you what to swap it for. Look at the picture of a typical day's worth of food! Huge portions for the meals and then snacks as well. Chocolate chip stuffed strawberries! It is based on about 1300 calories a day. Almost all of the recipes are for one serving, but that works out well for me to since my husband doesn't need to follow such a regimented program. The recipes that make two servings work as well because then I have a meal already for the next day.
As the weeks go on, she adds more choices, but each day is just as outlined on Day 1. I love that because it takes a lot of the guess work out of meal planning. I can go through the choices for the week and make sure I have those foods on hand. Once I find a recipe I like, I could eat that all 7 days that week if I want to.
The other thing that goes along with the meal plan is having my vegetables cut up and ready for me in the fridge. A lot of days I get so busy working that I don't stop and eat when I should, before I get so starving that I just want to eat everything in sight. Having the vegetables already cut and my meals picked, makes it so easy for me to whip up a healthy meal instead of grabbing a burger at a drive-through.
|Cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, zucchini|
It took about a half an hour to cut up those vegetables and clean up the knives and cutting board, and by putting them in containers that are easy to put a measuring cup or spoon into saves so much time during the busy week.
Because I have gone through the four week course once already, I know a lot of the meals by heart. Since I have a lot of weight to lose, I also got her diet cookbook which has additional recipes.
Yes, those are banana pancakes on the top and chocolate cake on the bottom! Healthy versions of course but having the ability to make a healthy stack of banana pancakes makes it feel not so restrictive. Lots of tips new things to try in these recipes. I have even eaten tofu, which I never thought I would like. Using tofu shiritake fettuchini style noodles with chicken and an "alfredo" cheese sauce (she calls it Chicken Hungry Girlfredo). I might almost think I was eating the real thing if I hadn't made it myself!
The first time I did it I lost 26 pounds. I did gain some back but not all and I am determined to finish out this year following it as closely as possible. Lisa also believes in the 80/20 rule, which is that if you follow the plan strictly 80% of the time, you can relax 20% of the time if you need to. For example, we are going away next week for our annual Boulder Creek Golf Tournament (I don't golf but my hubby does - I relax). Of course we will be eating out more but we have a rented house for three days so 80% of the time I can be responsible for my own meals and eat on-plan. When we go out, if I make the healthiest choices on the menu I can (fish, chicken, etc.) then I will use the 20% on those meals.
That's what makes my life simpler right now. How about you? What's easing your day to day? Make sure to stop by some other bloggers in the challenge. It's so nice to get a comment or two!