Saturday, August 31, 2013

Weigh-In Saturday

Starting weight: 301
Last week's weight: 264
Today's weight: 260
Total loss: 41 pounds

Whoa! What's up with that? Last week 1 and this week 4. But I'm not going to over think it. I'm just going to be thankful.

Shortly after surgery, it was kind of fun to future trip and think about how much weight I might lose by certain occasions. I tried to reel this in a bit and not get too crazy. I never know what's going to happen and some things are not in our control. So...cautiously, optimistically, I wondered if I could lose 41 pounds by my 41st birthday on September 14th. I hit that this morning. It feels really good to be two weeks ahead of schedule!

I hope everyone has a great Labor Day weekend! Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

What Am I Eating This Week?

Just like last week, my meals have involved the same foods over and over again. I like it because it keeps things simple and convenient for me right now at the beginning of the school year. Before being banded, I really hated eating the same thing for days in a row. I don't know exactly what has changed, but now I don't mind it all. I enjoy things just as much the third time as the first time.

With the exception of Tuesday, which was a full liquid day, and Monday night, which was clear liquids only, here's what I've been eating this week.

Breakfasts have been my yummy Egg Muffins. This week's version includes ham, black olives, and shredded mozzarella. They are so much lower in calories than the ones I made last week with Jimmy Dean reduced fat sausage, but they have just as much protein.
Lunch has been 2 ounces of smoked turkey. 2 tablespoons of red bell pepper hummus, a Kraft jalapeño cheese stick, and some red bell pepper strips.
And speaking of repetition… How many times can I make this old standby? Yep...I'm talking about my Poppy Seed Chicken Casserole. I made it tonight for dinner, and I'll be eating it tomorrow night for dinner too. I've noticed that this is what I always crave in the days following a fill. It's delicious, it's super easy to chew, and it's just plain comforting.
It's always a good day when you see a delivery from Nordstrom at your door when you get home. I have been stalking this bag for a few weeks now, and it thrilled me to see that it's just as fabulous as I thought it would be. I'm ready for fall fashion and cold weather!

My nutrition totals:

I hope everyone is having a great week. Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Well...THAT Makes Sense

So I've been walkin' around, livin' my life,  thinking I had 5cc in my band. Wrong! I had 4, and now I have 5.2 after my third fill yesterday. My surgeon did my fill yesterday and he set the record straight. Apparently the fluid they use to "prime" the band during surgery doesn't count. Say what?

But...soooooo many things make sense now. Not the least of which is that I was able to devour this whole thing at Genghis Grill on Saturday night.
And how I sometimes feel  hunger 2 and a half hours after a high protein meal.
Not that Genghis Grill bowl, though. I was good for the rest of the night after that. :)

I've been on full liquids all day today. You know the drill...Progresso Chicken Enchilada Soup, Unjury iced coffee, Chobani yogurt. And it hasn't been at all miserable.

Tomorrow I will be back on regular food and it will be interesting to see how that goes. I'm hoping this was the fill that pushed me into that elusive Green Zone. We shall see.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Weigh-In Saturday

Starting weight: 301
Last week's weight: 265
This week's weight: 264

Hmmmmm.... a pound. 1 pound.

Kind of thought it would be more than that considering my activity this week. I'm going over the different possibilities in my head. Trying to think about it, but not dwell too much, you know? My calories and water were on target every day, my body was constantly in motion. Standing all day, walking all over the place. Who knows. I'm going to keep my head down and forge on.

In other news, this was a really good week. Exhausting, but good. My students seem sweet and really eager to learn Spanish. Our new principal is the BEST. Right now I feel like year #20 could be the best one yet.

With a lot of prepping beforehand, my meals were easy and really delicious too. Those Egg Muffins I made on Sunday are going to become a staple. Tomorrow I'll be making a ham, mozzarella, black olive version. One thing I was really relieved about is the timing of my food. By starting my morning with my Unjury Iced Coffee, that keeps me going until 10:00 when I can eat breakfast. Lunch is at 12:45. Not ideal, but I'm working with it. I am finding, however, that I am hungry for dinner around 5:00 or 5:30. I am not used to eating quite that early. But....considering that I am ready for bed by 9:30, maybe it's not such a bad thing after all. Oh how my life has changed in the past two weeks!! I really miss being a Lady of Leisure. :)

Getting ready to make a Chocolate Splendor coffee and start my day. I've got to make a quick trip to the grocery store, but that's the only chore-type thing I'm planning to do today. I hope everyone is having a great weekend!

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Full Speed Ahead

Whoa. This week is a whirlwind. So to make it super easy and convenient for myself, I have been eating the same thing for the past couple of days. In fact, my breakfast and lunch is going to be the same all week. Not that I mind.

I'm really digging the egg muffins I made on Sunday. They are delicious and I just pop them in the microwave for a few seconds when I get a chance to eat breakfast at 10:00am. The timing of that is really working out well, by the way. By 10, I am pretty hungry, but not so completely ravenous that I eat too fast.

Lunch has been 2 ounces of smoked ham, an ounce of fresh mozzarella, 2 tablespoons of hummus, and 8 black sesame rice crackers.

Monday night I made one of my favorite recipes of all time. Emily over at Emily Bites has a great selection of delicious and healthy recipes. Quite a few of them are Weight Watcher recipes that are good for Bandsters too. This is the Chicken Tamale Bake. My recipe differs from Emily's in that I use  about 11 ounces of chopped rotisserie chicken instead of shredded chicken breast. That makes the calorie count slightly higher, but I really like the mixture of white and dark meat. Here's what it looks like when it comes out of the oven.
And here is my portion:
I've had this for dinner the past two nights, and I'll also be having it again tomorrow. By Thursday I will definitely be ready for a change of pace! Here are my totals for Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday... the same for all three days. Repetition is not so exciting, but it's easy. And this week I need some EASY! :)
I hope everyone is having a great week. Thanks for reading!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Green Chile Cheddar Sausage Egg Muffins

So this is what I'll be eating for breakfast every day this week. And I'm excited about it!

I know there are a million versions of these out there, but this is mine. That's one of the things that make these so can really put anything you want in them.  I'm already thinking about a black olive, ham, and mozzarella version for next week.

I lined my muffin tins with some baking cups and sprinkled a small bit of grated cheddar cheese in each one. At first I thought I'd be making 12 egg cups, but it was evident pretty quickly that the recipe would make way more than that. I ended up with 18 total.

I browned some Jimmy Dean Reduced Fat Sausage and added a small can of chopped green chiles.
When that was done, I divided the sausage/green chile mixture evenly among the 18 cups.  I mixed up 12 eggs with a little bit of salt and pepper and poured that into the muffin tins. These baked at 350 for 20 minutes, but I probably could've baked them for a bit less time. You definitely don't want to over cook your eggs. Especially if you'll be popping them in the microwave throughout the week like I will.
They looked so good when they came out of the oven, I ended up having two for my breakfast this morning. Had to try them out, right? :)
Here are the nutrition stats for two egg muffins:

Enjoy! Thanks for reading!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Weigh-In Saturday

Starting weight: 301
Last week's weight: 267
Current weight: 265

I'm happy with the 2 pound loss this week.  Especially considering that there wasn't much exercise (other than a little light, morning yoga) to speak of.

This weekend is going to be all about mental preparation and relaxation. The busiest week of my year is about to go down, people! :) We have a new principal this year and he is SO nice. His positive attitude and calm demeanor is really influencing my positive attitude. Not to get too specific, but it's a monumental change from what we have been dealing with for the past three years.

I think I'm good to go, food wise. I went to the grocery store last night and got all of the things I'm going to need this week. For breakfast, I'm taking a cue from Austin Bander and making Egg Muffins. I am going to do a reduced fat sausage, green chile, cheddar version. For lunch I'm going to keep it simple with smoked ham, fresh mozzarella, and hummus.

The relaxation portion of my weekend includes the second season Scandal marathon on BET. I cannot believe how good this show is. I mean...Kerry Washington's wardrobe alone. Simply amazing. And did I mention John is off tonight too? Yea!

I hope everyone is having a great weekend. Thanks for reading!

p.s. And a big thanks to Hollee over at Hollee's Weight Loss Adventure for coming up with a genius name for the unfortunately named Man Pleasing Chicken. Wait for it......People Pleasing Poultry. LOVE it!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Back in the Swing

Well...this week has been....not so bad at all. All of the things I was nervous about have worked out just fine! Whew! I can do this.

Let me back up a minute. For those of you who don't know, I'm a teacher and I was banded on June 7th. That meant I had the ENTIRE summer to recover and adjust to my new lifestyle. It was nice, and I planned it that way. I had time to prepare leisurely meals, workout any day I wanted to, get plenty of rest, etc. So as school is beginning, I'm finding out that all of these habits I've worked on are now becoming second nature.

We have had meetings this week and each day I've started my morning with my Unjury Protein iced coffee. Around 9:30 each morning I've had this for breakfast:
We've been eating lunch every day at 11:30...much earlier than I'll be eating when school actually starts. Lunches have varied this week. Monday: Wendy's Chili, Tuesday: half of a Turkey Wrap, Wednesday: grilled shrimp, veggies, and refried beans, and today I had a slice of pizza with Canadian bacon and black olives.

Dinners have been pretty standard too. I've been cooking a meal and then having the leftovers for dinner the second night. Monday night I made Man Pleasing Chicken. The hardcore feminist in me HATES that name, but it's some damn good chicken.
 Last night I made my favorite Poppy Seed Chicken casserole and that's what I'll be having tonight too.

My calories and protein have been on track each day. Water has been good, but not perfect. Exercise? That's a whole different, sad story. Non-existent this week. I haven't been too hard on myself about it because this first week back is always so exhausting, but I know that cannot keep happening. I would probably have more energy and not be as tired if I would find time to work out. My Bob Harper yoga DVD should come in the mail today, so I will be checking that out this weekend.

My hunger levels are still really diminished after that second fill. I'm scheduled for my third fill on August 26th and I have a feeling that this will be a tiny one if I even get one at all. I hate to even say it out loud, but I think I'm thiiiiiis close to the coveted Green Zone.

I hope everyone has had a good week. Thanks for reading!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A Realization and a Revelation

Realization: this Plantar Fasciitis situation is no joke. I really wanted to believe that I could go back to my normal exercise routine and everything would be just fine with some stretching and some ice. Wrong!

After a couple of days of rest, my foot was feeling pretty good. So yesterday I went to the gym and did my normal routine...about 40 minutes of power walking and then weights. The walk went well, no pain at all... so I went on about my business for the rest of the day. Around 8pm last night it was like my foot was on fire. No amount of ice or stretching helped. Luckily it's feeling better today, but I've learned my lesson. My plan? This:
I've always really liked Bob Harper and I've heard great things about this workout. In my late 20's, early 30's I went to yoga three times a week. I really don't know why I ever stopped. I'm hoping this will be a good workout, and will not be bad for the PF. We will see.

Revelation: having a LapBand does not mean that you will have to give up your favorite foods for the rest of your life.

Duh? Right? Let me explain myself here. No matter what I read to the contrary, before I was banded a small part of me wondered if I would ever be able to go out to eat and truly enjoy myself again. So much so, that in the weeks leading up to my pre-op diet, I did what my friends and I dubbed the "Farewell to Eating Tour". I went to three or four of my very favorite restaurants and basically stuffed myself. There was Mexican food, pizza, cupcakes, cheeseburgers, and my favorite of all...Indian food. I look back now and wonder what the hell I was thinking.

Well today I met my best friend from college (and partner in crime on the Farewell tour) for lunch at the very same Indian restaurant where it all went down before. And because it was lunch, they were having their buffet. Big mistake, right? Not so fast.

I gave myself some guidelines. First off, there would be one trip and there would be no shenanigans. And by "shenanigans" I meant...nothing in cream sauce, nothing fried, and no dessert. And guess what? I did great. I had tandoori chicken, a few bites of chana masala, some shrimp vindaloo, and a couple of bites of naan. What's even better is that I left there without being in a horrible, bloated, food coma, and in no way did I feel cheated or deprived. And if I can do this at my favorite restaurant of all time, I can do this anywhere. It's a pretty great feeling.

Not such a great feeling? School starts tomorrow.'ll be fine. I'm just being a big, whining baby right now. The kids don't come until next week...this week is nothing but in-service meetings. I would much rather skip those and be with the kids. I'm also a bit anxious about being back on a schedule. All summer long I've been able to listen to my body's signals, eat when I wanted, work out when I wanted...all of that. No more! I'll figure it all out, it's just daunting right now. Stay tuned!

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful week!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Weigh-In Saturday

Starting weight: 301
Last week's weight: 270.5
Current weight: 267.0

Wow. A 3.5 pound loss this week. I am ecstatic!

At this point I'm ready to say that I think bumping up my calories to 950 - 1,000 a day has really made a difference. I don't know what to think about the exercise factor though. I've only done one workout this week due to the Plantar Fasciitis situation, so I was expecting that to have slowed down my loss.

This past Wednesday was my second fill, and I can REALLY tell a difference in the amount that I am able to eat. Yesterday was my first day back on solid food and I only ate two small meals. About half a fish filet and a few bites of eggplant casserole for lunch, and a small chicken enchilada with about a third of a cup of refried beans for dinner. I'll be having the other half of the Mexican meal for my dinner tonight.

So far today I've had my iced coffee and breakfast. I made my coffee with Chocolate Splendor Unjury instead of Vanilla because I was kind of in a mocha mood. For breakfast I had a scrambled egg with a slice of pepper jack, and some sliced tomatoes.
In a little while I'm going to the gym to walk and do weights. I'm going to stretch my foot really well and ice it afterwards. Then I've got to make a Walmart trip that I don't even want to THINK about. We are literally out of everything. It's going to be massive.

I'm planning on having Wendy's chili for lunch, and dinner is already in the fridge. Yea!

John has a gig tonight, so I'm going to do laundry and watch the Scandal marathon on BET. I finished the first season on Netflix, so I want to watch Season 2 before the third season starts in October. It's a REALLY good show.

My totals for today:

Have a great weekend everyone! Thanks for reading.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Adventures in Primary Care

This morning at 7:15 I got a call from my doctor's office telling me that my doctor wouldn't be in today due to an emergency, but that I could see another doctor in the practice at 9:15 if I wanted. I definitely didn't want to wait around any longer, and next week is going to be monumentally busy, so I told her "Sure. Put me down for 9:15."

So I get there and they take me back very quickly. But then the waiting begins. About thirty minutes go by and a very sweet nurse comes back to tell me that a man just came in with a fishhook deeply embedded in his hand and that it could be a while. She was right. I settled in and caught up on the latest celebrity gossip on my phone. By the way, I LOVE Beyoncé's new haircut. :)

The doctor comes in about 10:20 and what do you know...he's a former student of mine. I'm telling you...when you have taught school in the same town for twenty years, you literally never know who you are going to run into. He was in my room the first year I taught and he was smart, smart, smart. He's 35 and he and his wife are expecting their fifth child! Crazy. Turns out he is the sports medicine doctor at the clinic too. Exactly who I needed to see.

I told him about my plantar fasciitis and told him all of the things I've been doing so far...everything you guys have suggested to me...icing it, stretches. He said that's exactly what he would recommend and to keep it up. The best part is that he cleared me to walk as much as I feel like, but to stretch and ice immediately after each session. I was really relieved to hear it.

I got my second fill yesterday. I received an additional 2cc, so now I'm up to 5cc total. I was on clear liquids yesterday, and today I am on full liquids. So far today I've had an iced coffee and a cup of my favorite Progresso Chicken Cheese Enchilada Soup.

After my first fill I was so hungry after being on liquids for two days that I wanted to claw my eyes out. Last night and today though have been just fine. I get hungry, but it's kind do I put this? Muted. Kind of dialed down. Is this what being in the green zone feels like? Is this what the band does for you? If so, I'm completely digging it. Band veterans, let me know what you think.

I hope everyone is having a great week! Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Ain't Nobody Got Time For That

Seriously. Why does it always have to be something? Now that my knees are feeling great and I've developed an exercise routine that I actually don't mind and sometimes even look forward to, it appears I've developed Plantar Fasciitis.

Over the past two weeks, I've noticed that I have pain in my left heel. It kind of felt like a stone bruise, if you've ever had one of those. It was a bit painful, but no big deal. And it never bothered me at all while I was walking so I didn't give it much thought. Over the past few days though, it has developed into something different altogether. It is so painful at night time that I literally have to hobble to bed. Last night was the worst of all.

So I have an appointment with my doctor for Thursday morning at 9am. I've got to get this sorted out. I can't let it derail my exercise. I will also have to stand all day long at school in the coming weeks. I literally DO NOT have time for this. If any of you have suggestions or advice, please, PLEASE let me know.

Plantar Fasciitis, this goes out to you.

Monday, August 5, 2013

I've Got The Power! Breakfast Sandwich, That Is

Every time I turn on the TV lately, I always seem to see the Panera Power Breakfast Sandwich commercial. I love Panera, but the nearest one is about 20 minutes away. When I used to go there for breakfast, the PBS was always my standard order. So for the past couple of mornings I've been making my own with a slice of Ezekiel bread, a slice of pepper jack cheese, some tomato slices, and a scrambled egg.
Because this sandwich is so filling and I'm having it for brunch and not breakfast exactly, I don't get hungry until quite a while later.

When I came home from the gym today, I decided to up my protein count for the day. I've also heard that after you lift weights, eating a protein snack is a good idea. This may be the most unappetizing photo I've ever taken, but it was so good, I promise! 2oz of cracked pepper turkey breast, 2oz of smoked ham, and 2 tablespoons of hummus. I was wishing I had some cucumber slices to go along with this. Cucumber and hummus is one of my favorite combos.
Tonight for dinner, I'm going to make the Green Chile Cheese Puff I wrote about in this this post. It's delicious and I serve it with a bit of hot sauce and some sliced avocado. The recipe makes 6 portions, so I will be having it again tomorrow night. In fact, all of tomorrow's eating will be exactly like today's. John absolutely LOVES this recipe and has no problem finishing off the rest of it.
Wednesday is a big day for me. Not only will I be getting my 2nd fill, it's also my 2 month surgiversary! It's hard to believe that only two months ago I was taking this huge step toward better health. I feel like I've gotten off to a great start.

My totals from yesterday:
And for today (and tomorrow too):

 Have a great week and thanks for reading!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Weigh-In Saturday

I usually HATE being wrong, but not in this case! I am down another 2.5 pounds since last Saturday! Woo hoo!

Starting weight: 301
Today's weight: 270.5

So technically my total weight loss is 30.5 pounds. I guess the MyFitnessPal ticker rounds up a half pound.

Maybe there is something to upping my calories a slight bit. All I know is that I didn't think that I had lost ANY weight. So I am pretty thrilled. Onward!

My eating plan for today is going to be the same as yesterday. Except for breakfast, of course! Definitely don't want to revisit that. I had a scrambled egg with pepper jack and sliced tomatoes instead:
Can't get enough of those homegrown tomatoes. My Uncle Ronnie also grows jalapeños and other peppers, so I have a few of those to use in recipes this week too.
The La Tiara taco shells I used last night were absolutely amazing. I'll never buy another kind. They are smaller than standard taco shells, but are 100% more delicious. If you can find them, buy them.

My totals for today:
Getting ready to head to the gym for workout number 4 for the week. No other plans for today except for relaxing and hanging out with my sweet John.

Happy Saturday! Thanks for reading.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Bad Food Choices

No...not those kind. This kind:
I found these last night in the grocery store section of Drug Emporium. Looks good, right? And check out these nutrition stats:
And how pretty it looked on my plate:
But when I'm took my first bite, my new food find high came crashing down. I'm just gonna put it bluntly y'all...this thing was vile. It had some indefinable spice and the aroma of hot garbage. I got about a third of the way through it when I just gave up and ate my ham and tomato. So sad. And did I mention that I bought three of them?

So after my workout today, I went to Wendy's and got a small chili. I needed something reliably delicious. :) And it was. Despite the fact that it's 95 degrees here, chili is always a good choice.

John is off tonight, so I'm making dinner. Tacos! I'm using Laura's Lean Beef and these. I'm so excited to try them because Pioneer Woman raves about them. I mean...if it's PW approved, you know it's good.
And the best part is that they're 40 calories per shell.  I got them at Walmart.

I'm feeling sort of anxious about my weigh-in tomorrow. I don't feel as though I've lost any this week. Considering the fact that I'm....ahem..."retaining water", maybe I picked the wrong week to try my 950 calories a day experiment. Who knows. We shall find out tomorrow morning.

My totals for today:

 Thanks for reading and have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Ten Things Thursday

1. So last week I confessed that after years of watching the infomercial, I broke down and ordered Cindy Crawford's Meaningful Beauty skincare system. My verdict? It's just kind The cleanser is basically Cetaphil. And for the money, you could do just as well at Walgreens. I had to find out for myself though. I think it would be fine if you are 20 to 35, but I need some stronger stuff at my age. Like Retin A and some glycolic acid. ;)

2. I'm deep cleaning my house room by room before school starts. I know I'm not going to feel like it for a while. Those first weeks always knock me for a loop. On the plus side, it's a really great workout. I'm moving furniture and everything. :) Furry Lewis has been helping too.
3. Tuesday's eating was an exact replica of Monday. Love those Buffalo Chicken Eggrolls! And Wednesday was the same too except for dinner.

4. Fill. What fill? The past two days I have been feeling like I don't even have a band at all. My hunger is off the charts.  I know it's because my TOM is coming up, but I don't like it. At all.

5. I met my friend Jordan for dinner last night and it was so good to catch up. She just got back from a whirlwind trip to Paris, so there was a LOT to talk about. We went to my favorite Mexican restaurant and I got the shrimp fajitas. I ate the shrimp, some veggies and 2 corn tortillas.

6. I'm starting to think I need some sort of Target 12 step program. I went in yesterday for toilet bowl cleaner (see # 2) and I bought a purse. In my defense though, it was on clearance for $8. Marked down from $24.99. So when you think about it, I couldn't afford NOT to get it.
7. I cannot wait to see this movie.  I saw the trailer for it when I went to see Bling Ring. Scarlett Johannsen, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, AND Tony Danza??? I'm there. It comes out in late September.

8.  In 11 days I will begin my 20th year in the classroom. And I've been in the exact same classroom for all of those 20 years, which is practically unheard of. I'm very lucky to do what I do.

9. I'm having a super hard time with my water this week. I have met my 64oz goal most days, but it has been difficult.

10. I know I don't usually talk about very many serious things on this blog, but I cannot stop thinking about Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry, and Gina DeJesus.  When Michelle spoke out against Ariel Castro in court today, I just wanted to stand up and cheer. And then I wanted to hug her. I cannot even fathom that kind of courage. Here's hoping that the remainder of their lives be free of pain and blessed with constant love and happiness.

Thanks for reading.