Monday, September 19, 2016

4.2 pounds, Travel and Whole 30 - Catching up

Welllll I had bigggg plans while I was away in New Zealand and Australia but the internet situation wasn't great and so I tried to track and photograph everything so I could update my blog as soon as I got back.

First of all New Zealand was great! Australia was too! I made up my mind before I left I was going to have wine. That's not  Whole 30. The thing with Whole 30 is you have to start over if you have anything not Whole 30 Approved. I was ok with that I mean its New Zealand and Australia. What I told myself was I would stick to Whole 30 food wise, still exercise and enjoy wine. One of the hotel's had a scale and I stayed with 1-2 pounds of my... GET THIS 4.2 POUND WEIGHT LOSS. YES YOU HEARD... well read me! I went to Weight Watchers on Saturday,  September 10th and I was down 4.2 pounds! Unfreaking believable the down side was I weighed in Sunday so Saturday was 6 days so it was logged in as a visitor and so I didn't get my 5 pound charm or my 5% one :-( so that was motivation to stay focused. I brought a huge stash of snacks- Trader Joe trail mix, pistachios, Trader Joe plantain chips, Bare apple chips and banana chips and fresh apples. Well why did I not realize all of that would have to be declared at Customs :-O I was hell bent on keeping my snacks and the flight attendant said there was a $400 fine if you did not declare and it didn't mean they would take it but you had to tell them you had it. The Boarder control lady was nice and let me keep everything! So while everyone else was snacking on cookies and chips I stuck with mine until Friday then I bought some cheese curls (a thing I always try overseas lol) they weren't that great anyway!

But now I am back... Got in late Sunday... Made it to my personal trainer today and jumped right back into Whole 30! As promised here are my meals and a few recipes!

Fried egg, Roma tomatoes, Guacamole, and finally Pederson's bacon!


Our new Wegmen's opened this weekend so I stopped by and looked for the famous Pederson's Bacon its Whole 30 and Paleo but its 4 Weight Watchers Smart points PER SLICE :-O

Now I will say.  It was good. Very good and I can definitely taste the difference. I had a late breakfast so I made two slices and cut them in half.

I did some other shopping to get some staples to meal prep... so ground turkey, ground pork, eggs,  baby carrots, tomatoes, bananas, strawberries, lettuce and finally a few Lara Bars. warning they are 9 Weight Watchers Smart points! :-O  NINE... Similar to the bacon Whole 30 friendly but Smart Point heavy. I spent about $60 in Wegman's and about $20 at a local produce market where I got cauliflower,  beets, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, sundried tomatoes, pears, avocado,  mushrooms, shallots, and watermelon.


I came home and started cooking. Here are the recipes and they are all easy:

Panamanian Chicken soup with a twist:

I used left over rosemary chicken tighs I got tired of last week so I froze them.

Added 2-3 cups of water
baby carrots half bag
celery 3 stalks
half an onion
left over rosemary potatoes
Garlic powder, Trader Joe's 21 Season Salute, onion powder, sea salt to taste
Boiled on low for about 1 hour!

NEXTTTTT... For breakfast a veggie Frittata

  1. 6 eggs
  2. 3-4 cups spinach (or other greens of your choice)
  3. 2 Roma tomatoes 
  4. 1/2 tsp salt
  5. 1/4 tsp pepper
  6. 1 cup chopped mushrooms
  7. 1/2 cup chopped onions 
  8. 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes 
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, onions, spinach, mushrooms, salt and pepper. Set aside.
  2. Heat olive oil/  Ghee in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add greens and cook 3-4 minutes until wilted. 
  3. Add egg mixture to the pan and place tomatoes on top. Using a spatula, occasionally lift the edges to allow uncooked egg to run under. Bake 12-15 minutes or until egg is cooked through. Cut into wedges 

Shepard's Pie: 

    Meat & Veggies Filling
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lb grass-fed beef or ground turkey
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 3 cups spinach 
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbs tomato paste or 1 cup pasta sauce

  • Potato Topping
  • 2 large (or 4 medium) white-fleshed potatoes
  • 1 head of cauliflower 
  • 21 Season salute 
  • garlic  powder 
  • Paprika 
  1. Microwave or boil potatoes in salted water about 20 minutes until tender and boil cauliflower separately  
  2. Sauté chopped onion, spinach, celery, mushrooms and carrots in a skillet over medium-high heat about 10 minutes with 2 tbs of olive oil or coconut oil or Ghee 
  3. Cook and then add the ground beef (or turkey) to the sautéed veggies, along with the meat seasonings and garlic; pan fry until beef is cooked through
  4. Next add the tomato paste/sauce 
  5. Simmer together about 10 minutes
  6. Spoon meat mixture into in an oven-safe glass pie dish or casserole dish
  7. In a medium saucepan or mixing bowl, mash cooked potatoes and add cauliflower 
  8. Optional: add 1 tbs of butter/ghee to the mashed potatoes 
  9. Stir in seasonings but save paprika for the top
  10. Gently spread mashed potatoes over the beef / turkey filling
  11. Bake at 350-degrees F for about 30 minutes
  12. Optional: after baking, place dish under oven broiler for 2-3 minutes to add a little brown crust



Final product

I still have some pork loin and chicken to decide what to do something with but that will  probably be Wednesday or Thursday.

So as a quick reminder Whole 30 is for 30 days. Its all about "clean eating" meaning fresh fruits and veggies and protein.Its definitely not for everyone and I know its not something I will do long term but its really good. I know sounds crazy but I don't want to feel like I can never have wine or chocolate. I think  30 days is doable and I  really like  how I feel when I do Whole 30. I am going to keep posting my meals and results! Won't you join me?!

Pics from vacay! I still need to upload most of them but here are a few  faves!

Hobbiton - Lord of the Rings tour

Friday, September 9, 2016

September Whole 30 Days 4 & 5

Well Day 4 & 5 went well! I am really liking Whole 30!!

I think planning is the key; and not hours of planning either. I think it seems like a lot more hard work than it is and people may be deterred by that. I want to share my meals for Day 4 and 5 and I even went out to lunch :-O I feel so empowered by Whole 30. I am headed out of the country and I am going to bring snacks, etc and focus on protein and veggies for my meals. I am planning to go to my Weight Watchers meetings tomorrow before I fly out of town and I'll give ya the results as soon as I can post!

Day 4

I've had the best sleep all week!! I even over slept so I grabbed a pack of Trader Joe's Go Raw Trek for breakfast on the bus

Lunch: I felt like getting out of the office so we went to a new restaurant call CIRCA it was a bit intimidating because I only checked the menu quickly but went in without a plan. I debated a burger but ended up picking this Mango Chicken Salad
The salad had blackened grilled chicken breast, mango, grapes, tomatoes, cashews and it came with field greens but I'm just not a fan of them so I swapped for romaine lettuce and the flavors were so awesome. I didn't even need the salad dressing which I am sure was not Whole 30 friendly anyway.
My snack was Trader Joe's almond butter and bananas. Another upside of Whole 30 trying new things and liking them. Almond butter is great. I got the salted version and I still  added sea salt lol I am a salt person but it seems to have gone up on Whole 30
 Another snack... lol Guacamole and plantain chips  and some salted pistachios I usually buy the unsalted but again that salt craving...

Last night I felt for breakfast for dinner!
So I made a  fried egg, fried sweet plantain (which wasn't that sweet), bacon and some left over sweet potato mash.

Day 5 (Today)

 Had the veggie egg muffins (recipe below) and apple chicken sausage and sweet potato mash

The egg muffins didnt taste that great I think I microwaved them  too long so I only had half and by 10:30 I was hungry so I had yesterday's lunch which was sooo good!

So I made my famous (lol) Jerk Chicken (recipe below)  but because of the Whole 30 rules the BBQ sauce and Lawry's Jerk marinade I usually use were OUT! I actually looked up the ingredients for the Lawry's and the FIRST ingredient is High Fructose Corn Syrup!!!!!
Another great benefit of Whole 30 is I am really paying attention  to the food labels now! Why do we need all that sugar?! I guess because it makes everything taste better lol 

I also roasted some mini red and white potatoes with rosemary and roasted some fresh beets

So if you have a Produce Market in your area its like a gold mine!
I got all of this for about $10.00
Fresh peeled garlic, fresh rosemary, potatoes,  scallion, beets and asparagus

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 8 muffin cups or line with paper liners.
  2. Beat 6 eggs together in a large bowl. Mix ham, bell pepper, onion, salt, black pepper, and  1/2 cup of water into the beaten eggs
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until muffins are set in the middle, 18 to 20 minutes.


Jerk seasoning you have two options use Walker Wood  or use a food processor and combine the following ingredients 

  1. Season the chicken (thighs, legs, breast) with the salt, pepper and two tablespoons of the jerk seasoning. Cover and refrigerate the seasoned chicken in a container the night before (or at least 2 to 3 hours before cooking).
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Place the marinated chicken into a pan and let it bake covered for 30 minutes in the oven. Add one chopped onion, green pepper, red pepper, garlic power or garlic cloves and onion powder. Add Trader Joe's 21 Season Salute.
  4. Turn the chicken over and spread the last tablespoon of jerk seasoning on top of the chicken. Let it bake uncovered for 30 minutes on this side before removing the baked chicken from the oven. Turn again and cook for approximately 10 more minutes.  
Homemade Jerk sauce: via

To make Whole 30 friendly remove those items  or swap them for fresh ingredients (listed below)

In a food processor or blender, combine the green onions, onion, scotch bonnet peppers, vinegar, vegetable oil, thyme, cloves, nutmeg and allspice. Mix for about 15 seconds.

2 Tbsp. thyme
2 Tbsp. ground allspice
8 Cloves garlic, finely chopped
 3 Medium onions, finely chopped

2 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. salt
2 Tsp. ground black pepper

1 to 2 Tsp of the following (to taste)
-ground cinnamon

1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup soy sauce
Juice of one lime
1 cup orange juice-  swap for fresh orange
1 cup white vinegar

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

WHOLE 30 Day 2 & 3

And so it begins! My first time buying an avocado thank you Whole 30. That may be the best part of this journey trying new healthy things and actually enjoying them!
Morning! Well I am checking in as promised to give details about my Whole 30 journey. As I mentioned in the last post this is my first time doing Whole 30 so we will learn together! I am totally taking advantage of the online resources like the Facebook groups and the Instagram community #SeptemberWhole30 to learn as much as I can and get great ideas.

Ok so here's the thing I don't trust myself so I am still doing Weight Watchers which requires tracking as well as weighing in. I get the Whole 30 mindset but I'm not there so maybe if I do a round two I can step away from that level of accountability. I know I need when it comes to portion control and support and Weight Watchers is still my answer. Case in point... Day 2 but I'll get to that!

So yesterday was Day 2 and I made good use of my time. I worked from home meaning I did not have my normal 1.5 hour commute in the morning followed by a 2 hour (if I'm lucky) commute home. I did some meal prepping Monday and Tuesday and I will be honest it really didn't take that much work or time. I did more shopping and will share what I got as well!

Tuesday: Day 2

Egg whites w/ ham, peppers, onions and spinach- 0
Cherry tomatoes -0
Guacamole - 3
Sweet potatoes mash with fried onions - 5

Roasted Yellow Pepper with Beef- 7

Left over Yellow pepper

Now for the Snacks:
1/2 cup salted pistachios- 5
Trader Joe's Go Raw Trek mix (small bag 1.4 cup)-7
Trader Joe's Roasted Plantain Chips (20 chips) -5

Total: 33 points (I get 30 a day)

See what happened here? Snacks off the chain. And not just 0 point snacks either. Now what I find fascinating is that these extra snacks are soooo high in points but are Whole 30 approved! But the fat content in nuts is high I guess same for the chips. Clearly I need a plan. I purchased them to be proactive because of snack at work! Around 2pm or 3pm I am always looking for a salty and/or sweet snack. Lately that means a trip to the vending machine for a 10 point treat. Now when you only get about 30 points a 10 point bag or bar of anything may fit into your weekly points but one its not a healthy option and two its a slippery slope and really easy to keep making bad choices. So I purchased a few items I'll list below and taste test them for ya!

So for today's menu:

Chicken Sausage- 3
1 Veggie egg muffin- 2
Sweet potato mash with onions (1/2 cup)- 5

Banana -0
1 TBSP Almond Butter
Trader Joe Roasted Plantain chips (10)- 2


Salmon- 4 points
Romaine lettuce- 0


Baked chicken with Spices -3 points
Spinach sauteed - 1

That still leaves me with 7 points today so I have some pistachios in baggies and fresh fruit.

Meal and snack prep. I used my measuring cup so I had the portions down correctly and I used my snack size bags and packed them up. Best tip as soon as you come home from shopping do the work!

My day at a glance! Egg whites I got from Sam's there were six boxes for about $6.00 

More snacks! 

My Trader Joe haul! 

They are high in points and a lil too sweet for me but I think a good  options

Almond butter and bananas. LOVE IT!


DAY 3 Breakfast

My 7 point Trader Joe Go Trek Raw Trail mix. The worst part is this is not the one I really like but that has added sugar. :-( 

I've been reading a lot of post about headaches and feeling tires and how hellish Day 2 and 3 can be. I have not had any of those problems! I was talking to my sister and I was saying maybe its because I've done Paleo before and by and large I do not each a lot of starches or sugar in general its just isn't hitting me. I have more energy, I am sleeping better and I am still working out along this 100 plus day journey. I don't know what gives some of my sorors in the AKA Women workout groups have had headaches etc so if you are feeling that ride it out!

Of course I snuck on the scale for two reasons! One I need the positive feedback. two I am headed away and will not make it to my normal WW meeting. So far down another 2.8!!! I may try to weigh in on Friday evening to get it officially but we will see! So far so good!