Monday, January 3, 2011

Preparing for Summer

Each January I get anxious for summer and this weekend we were lucky enough to get a small taste of it. It was 76-78 Saturday and Sunday and all I could think about was going to the pool and going on vacation. Then, my thoughts drifted to new bikinis and dresses, and making sure that I look my best in them. Last year in Orlando the warm weather didn't hit until about April, and it was full force heat from then until November. I am hoping we ease into it starting in February or so this time around, which means in a month and a half or so we could all be running around in shorts. I am thankful that we don't have long winters, since it is harder to gain a lot of weight when you're not covering your body up for months and months at a time.

I am trying to compile a list of foods to eat that are fast, easy, healthy and will guide me into the warmer weather. During the weeks I really emphasize the 'fast' part, as I workout after work and then want to eat before 8, so something quick is ideal. On the weekends I will be trying out some new healthy recipes that are more in depth and maybe time consuming. I also like the thought process of eating for what you're going ot do (work out wise). You need to basically fuel your body correctly to get the best performance out of it.

Coffee! - When I'm hungry in the morning a cup of coffee always eases the feeling and helps me to not eat so much
Fiber Cereal
Fiber English Muffin with Egg Whites and Tomato - Fiber does help to fill me up and a good breakfast will prevent snacking mid morning while protein is always a good addition to your morning and will help burn calories
Fruit - the sweetness often helps to do away with my candy cravings - I will stick to berries which help reduce water weight and don't load on calories like some others do

Raw Veggies - Paired with Fat Free Ranch, this is a healthy snack that is also low in calories
Green Tea - Filling up on liquids is supposed to help in feeling full, and green tea is shown to help shed pounds
Water - I try to drink 8 oz an hour while at work
Fiber Bar - I ate these in between lunch and my workouts and I found that they helped fight off the hunger until dinner


Salad - Lettuce, carrots, onion, cheese, bell peppers and light dressing. Adding chicken or shrimp helps make it more filling
Wraps - The Ole Extreme Wellness Wheat Wraps are only 70 calories each. Add some lunchmeat, lettuce, tomato and mustard and you have a low cal lunch with some carbs and protein
Soup - This is one of my favorites and is what really helped me shed pounds a couple years back. I had a cup of soup for lunch and maybe a serving of crackers with a string cheese. It doesn't sound like much, but paired with an afternoon snack it was a good serving
Chicken and Veggies - I love to roast vegetables, and really have become sort of obsessed. It is easy to throw some chicken or even fish in the oven on 400 with a tray of vegetables and have them cook, so taking leftover to work for lunch is a good option


Stirfry - Easy and produces lots of leftovers that can be used throughout the week
Use the Grill! - on the weekends I'd like to try some more marinades on chicken and also throw some fish on. Kabobs are also a good option that let you make your protein and veggies together
Veggies - As I said, I love to roast them. So throwing sweet potatoes, broccoli, asparagu, mushroom and carrots in the oven is an easy option and I could eat a whole tray myself
Turkey Burgers - I have some good recipes that I have tried, and sticking them on whole wheat Merita slider rolls only adds 100 calories.
Stuffed Peppers - One of my favorite dishes that Adam makes, these are a bit more time consuming but very low cal and so good. Paired with Brown Rice they are a perfect dinner
Fajitas - Chicken and veggies are obviously good for you, I think sodium is mostly the issue with these. If you make your own seasoning, you can know exactly what is in the mix that you use. Paired with the ole wraps and Fat Free Sour Cream these are actually a good meal
Lean Cuisines- I know that these are high in sodium, but they really help me out during the weekdays. At under 300 calories, some of them are really tasty and easy. They help bring my calorie count down a lot and I never notice bloating from the salt.

Things to Aviod:

Sweets/Sugar - I vow to not buy candy at the store that will sit on the couch next to me.
Carbs -  I tend to take eating carbs to another level - I love bread, rice, pasta and everything else that is starchy. Trading regular potatoes for sweet and white for brown rice has helped me out. I just need to keep dropping the amount that I consume at night.
Lazy Weekends - I need to start adding a weekend workout in. I had started for a while but then dropped off. Even one run or bikeride a weekend would be very helpful
Crazy Portions - I have gotten much better at this through the year. When I eat rice, I measure it before it goes on my plate and I also notice the ounces of protien I am eating. I try to eat on smaller plates and put the remaining food in the fridge before I eat. This has helped and I need to stick with it

I definitely have another boost of motivation now. Last year I was able to lose weight, and I do hope to lose another few pounds this month, but I really want to tone my arms and legs. You can be as skinny as you want, but if you don't have any muscle/tone/definition then you have the possibility of just looking soft and flabby. So I will tackle that this year.

I really would like to lose 2 or 3 pounds this month, so hopefully I can reach that goal. Then I'll be able to do some shopping! I hope that everyone had a great New Year Weekend! It's going to be hard to adjust to 5 day workweeks again, but vacation will be here before you know it.

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