Monday, January 16, 2012

Just another Meatless Monday

Happy Meatless Monday!

For those of you who are not familiar with the global Meatless Monday movement, you can check out this brief video for some insight. Seriously, it's less than a minute and a half of your day-- just watch it. In a nutshell, as participants of the Meatless Monday movement, Dan and I give up meat for the entire day each Monday. We're making a difference by simply giving up meat one day a week. Granted, we often eat more than one meat-free meal a week, but on Mondays, we dedicate the entire day. It's good for us, the animals, and the planet. To learn more about the Meatless Monday movement, visit their website at

Dan and I have been participating in Meatless Mondays for almost two months. We enjoy the meals, but sometimes going meatless isn't easy. We usually run into problems at lunchtime when we're in a hurry and we've forgotten it's Monday. We can't just eat our usual lunch of the prior dinner's leftovers. On days like that, I whip up some quick grilled cheese and tomato soup or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich if I'm on the run. We've been disappointed to learn that fast-food is often NOT healthy, vegetarian-friendly-- that's when Subway was our saving grace!

I figured you might be interested in hearing what an average Meatless Monday's meals looks like for us, so here's what I had today:

Breakfast- all mixed up together
  • Instant low sugar oatmeal (3 Points+)
  • 1 large banana (0 Points+)
  • 1 tbl. Better'N Peanut Butter (1 Points+)

  • 4 Chick'n nuggets- Trader Joe's brand (4 Points+)
  • Sweet potato fries (4 Points+)
  • Babybel light cheese wheel  (1 Points+)
  • grape tomatoes, cucumber slices  (0 Points+)
  • homemade garlic dip  (1 Points+)
  • 10 Special K chips  (1 Points+)
  • cheesy zucchini enchilada  (7 Points+)
  • 1/2 cup fat-free refried beans  (2 Points+)
  • 2 tbl. fat-free sour cream  (1 Points+)
  • 12 peanut M&Ms  (5 Points+)
  • apple  (0 Points+)
  • caramel dip  (3 Points+)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

New Year's Resolution: Lose Weight

Each year, many people make a New Year's resolution to lose weight. It is no surprise that each year, fitness clubs and diet companies profit from the sudden increase in health-conscious customers. On the 1st of the year, the TV floods with commercials for the latest dieting trends and fitness centers are filled to the brim with members working towards their resolution  (often referred to as January Rush). In the end, most of the people who set out to lose the weight, give up within a matter of months, if not weeks.

This year has been the worst January Rush at the gym that I have witnessed. Sure, I'm used to seeing more people at the gym in January and struggling to find parking during peak hours, but this year has been ridiculous. There were about 80 people in my Zumba class on Monday! The room only holds about 40 comfortably. I kid you not; we were packed like sardine! It must have been in violation of the fire code. Dancers couldn't even lift their arms without risk of punching fellow dancers. I'm shocked the gym did not turn people away. I'm dreading the crowd next week.

I haven't made a New Year's resolution in many years. I feel like it is partially setting yourself up for failure. I also feel that weight loss and fitness are lifetime commitments, not a promise you make at the start of the year.

However, I think 2012 is going to be a big year for me. I'm within 20 pounds of losing 100 pounds. I think that's pretty damn obtainable in a year! Here's my line of thinking-- I dream of going to Italy- seeing the natural beauty, strolling through museums, sipping wine on a veranda, snacking on crusty bread and cheese, and being swept up in the romance the country exudes. To ensure I get there before I die, I've been telling Dan that I will plan the trip when I lose 100 pounds. I've also said we will go and share the experience on our second wedding anniversary. This year will be our second wedding anniversary and also our tenth year together! I think I can lose the approximately 20 pounds that stand in my way. I could be living my dream of going to Italy. I can do anything I set my mind to... and I think I just made up my mind. Project Italy 2012. Should I call that a resolution? I don't think so...

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Still Fighting Those Holiday Pounds

What is it about the holidays that makes my body feel the need to resemble Santa Claus? 

This year, I was fortunate enough to spend Christmas with my parents and my sisters in their home in southwest Virginia for the first time since they moved down there five years ago. There's nothing like mom's cooking. Then, my mom and sisters came back to NJ for a visit for a few days. Let's just say those days involved lots of eating and visiting relatives. Weeks later, I'm still fighting to lose the nine pounds I gained over the holidays. 

I'm on a six-day workout streak: personal training, rock climbing, yogilates, and Zumba. I've been keeping busy! Tuesday was my weekly weigh-in, and I am very pleased to inform you all that I lost SEVEN (7) pounds this week!!! How did that happen?! Was it all the water I drank? Is working out having that much of an impact? I'm still two pounds heavier than before Christmas. I can't wait until I'm back to losing "new" weight, not weight I've already lost before. 

Did you gain weight over the holidays? Is it still hanging around? What are you doing to slim back down?

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Oh, Waffles!

Last month, I started seeing a trainer at the gym. The gym matched me with Waffa because she has experience with individuals like me who have lost a lot of weight. At this stage, she wants me to stop losing weight. Wait, what?! That's right. I need to stop losing weight so my body, specifically my skin, can catch up. She's helping me tone my body by building muscle. I had a very high BMI for someone size. As it turns out, I don't have much muscle... depressing, I know, but that's why I'm working on it.

About 48 hours after each training session with Waffa, or as Dan labeled her "Waffles," my back, hip, and muscles ache. With each movement, I groan "Oh, Waffles!" and think about how the pain means I'm building muscles, right?

This upcoming week will be my first week without training. Waffa is leaving me on my own to shed some of my holiday weight. In case you were curious, after finally losing the Halloween and Thanksgiving weight, I packed out about NINE (9) pounds of Christmas cookies and Mom's home cooking. I had to vow to hit the gym at least 5 days this week. This morning, I went to Yogilates AND did cardio afterwards. I'm a beast. lol. It's only Saturday, but I'm determined to start my week without Waffa off right. The following week, she is measuring my BMI again. I'm excited to see if I've made any progress :)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Indoor Rock Climbing at Elite Climbing

Since New Year's Day fell on a Sunday, Dan and I had Monday off to observe the holiday. With all the craziness from the holidays, it was nice for the two of us to take time out to just spend some fun  time together and a belated date to celebrate the nine years we've been together. So, we made a date for rock climbing and dinner in South Jersey. 

We went to Elite Climbing in Maple Shade, NJ. On Mondays, the run a BOGO deal on Beginner Packages, so we lucked out. Dan and I learned how to belay one another and then we just jumped into the climbing thing. I did it! I climbed to the tops of quite a few walls before my arms got too tired. We had a blast. Before we left, the owner offered to give us both complimentary one month memberships! We took him up on his offer, and we're going again this weekend and hope to go each weekend this month.

After climbing, we changed our clothes and went to dinner at Iron Hill Brewery. We started the meal with an amazing hummus platter (we'll get it again, for sure). Then, I decided to stay sensible by having the Mediterranean chicken salad as my entree so I could splurge over some heavenly limoncello cake with blueberry compote. As I savored each bite of cake, Dan helped me put things in perspective-- I just climbed a freaking rock wall! Looking back, 85+ pounds ago, I could have never imagined I'd accomplish such a feat. Now, I can't wait to do it again.