Category Archives: DIET!

Great Tool for Trying to Lose the Lard

JustSomethingCreative

I’m trying to count carbs, staying at 20 grams or under daily, on the Keto eating plan.  It’s easy to fool yourself on how many carbs you’re eating, what kind of portions, etc. I have used MyFitnessPal.com before to track my calories. Now I find I can change the parameters so I can concentrate on my carb count, with an eye to fat and protein in the right proportions.

I just now filled in what I ate for lunch, and then added what I planned to eat for dinner and a snack before bed. It totaled too many carbs for the day, so I played with my plans until I came out fine. This is wonderful. You can TRY different things before making the mistake, rather than feeling bad after you’ve messed up.

 

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We’ve Been Spiralized (if you’ll pardon the expression)

HungryGoddess.com

 

 

I’m probably the last person on the planet to spiralize a veggie. I’ve made cauli-rice and I’ve cooked spaghetti squash, but just spiralized my first yellow squash last night.

My sister-in-law, Mary Lou, told me that she had done it recently and she thought it was very good. Somehow, in my mind I was waiting to ‘process’ some and freeze it just to eat in place of spaghetti or noodles.

I used my spiralizer (above) for the very first time and it worked like a charm. I sauteed the squash in some olive oil, added some seasoned salt and pepper, and some garlic powder. It only took a few minutes to cook. My husband doesn’t like to ‘fight’ with spaghetti or anything like that, so I cut the ‘squash spaghetti’ into bite-sized pieces and served.   I put some on my husband’s plate, along with nice roast beef slices, and asked him to try it.

To my surprise, he said, “This is okay. What is it?” Around our house, this amounts to a judgment of ‘we can eat this again.’ (Not ‘YUMMY!” but it’ll work.) I can now look forward to serving this under recipes that call for spaghetti, angel hair pasta, or even noodles.

As far as our new ‘son’ (we’re hosting a 16-year-old soccer-player from Italy for the next school year, starting in August), I’ll ask him to try it. If he likes it, we’ll all try it with spaghetti and meat balls or a stir-fry. If he doesn’t, it won’t be a big deal to make some actual spaghetti for him.

Tonight I’m trying zucchini!

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Filed under DIET!, getting the lard off, Keto Eating Plan and Recipes We Like, taking care of yourself

Our Keto Journey Begins

Since my husband has 10 or so pounds to lose, and I have 30-35 pounds to go, we have started the Keto eating plan.  I’ve also told you that we’re going to be host parents, starting in August, to a 16-year-old soccer player from Italy. This way of eating will be MUCH more amenable to cooking for a family again, rather than the Nutrisystem plan we were on.

Recently I ordered Simply Keto by Suzanne Ryan of KetoKarma.com.  In the book, she explains her own weight loss journey (a loss of 120 pounds), the Keto eating plan, and a good recipe section, plus resources for further study, etc. I like her recipes because, so far, I’ve only had to go online for ONE ingredient.  Instead of finding several recipes that sounded possible or interesting, I feel as if I’ve won the lottery on good recipes to try!  The recipes are straight-forward, not fancy, and sound wonderful.

Last night I tried the first recipe from the book. It’s called “Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Breakfast Bake.”  My husband’s reaction was, “This is YUMMY!” and he said it two or three times. He also remarked, “This tastes too good to be what we’re supposed to be eating.”  We went out today to get another Pyrex pie plate so that I can double the recipe next time. The leftovers are good in the fridge for 4 days, and a serving is great for actual breakfast (though we enjoyed it for dinner), a snack, a lunch…. We can simply pop a serving into the microwave.  We agreed this would become one of our staples.

My biggest problem is getting my husband to pay attention to the details of the new plan. He is a Type II diabetic. With the Nutrisystem plan, he was able to eat some fruit again – something he sorely missed. I’ve told him that fruit is quite limited on this plan, plus he should forego the sugar-free ice cream he’s been eating at night. (Right now I’m trying to entice him with strawberries and heavy cream for tonight.)

If you’d like to try the recipe above, here is the link

ENJOY!

I’m hoping to be able to give you progress reports as I try to lose the rest of the lard.

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Getting the Lard Off – Hopefully

World Of Female

Yesterday I officially started the Keto eating plan, hoping to continue to lose the lard, but also figuring that this plan will be much more flexible with our foreign exchange student, Alessandro, a 16-year-old soccer playing student from Italy. He joins us for 10 months starting in August, and I want to be well into our new good habits by then.

I’m using a wonderful book called, “Keto After 50” by James Wilson. Since “50” sounds young to ME, I like this approach which is modified for older people. I’ve been reading a ton on the net, too, since one of my concerns will be high fat – to be processed by this older body with no gallbladder. Happily, I found that I can take a couple of supplements that will help with this.

My husband is a Type II diabetic (although he only admits to having a ‘sugar problem’) It’s super important to me that I keep him on an even keel. He is almost to his weight goal now (within 10 pounds – HOOORAAAAY!) while his WIFE continues to battle the lard. :0)

At this point I’ve lost 43 pounds and almost 48 inches.  I want to lose another 30 to 35 pounds and then stay there, with good eating and exercise habits.

We started on Nutrisystem, but then decided that we have learned 1) what we were doing wrong, and 2) how we’re supposed to be cooking and eating. We are almost doing the Keto program already, having stopped (mostly) eating bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, sugar, and salt. We splurge every once in a while, but that’s a quality of life thing for us.

I’m ordering supplements and gathering good recipes. I’m trying to reorganize our pantry – AGAIN – both to plan for the new eating system AND to make room for a lot more cooking than I’ve done in awhile. (It’ll be a real culture shock for us to feed a 16-year-old athlete – and from ITALY!)

Since I’m working in the yard and/or the garden almost daily, I’m going to TRY for more formal exercise three times a week. I’ll stick with my elliptical trainer, my yoga for ‘older’ women, and either the walking video or the dance video each week.

I told you I started this yesterday. The scale showed me down 1.2 pounds this morning, so I’m encouraged at this point – knowing that my weight loss will slow with time. I’m concentrating on doing the first two weeks – eating 20 grams of carbohydrates or less per day.

Wish me luck?

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Getting the Lard Off Report – May 2019 – The Long and Short of It

Gifer – Gifek.net

THE SHORT OF IT – I’ve lost 43 pounds and 47.7 inches.

THE LONG OF IT – We have held our own – more or less – with making our own food. We have splurged more than we probably ‘should,’ but we’re learning to eat much smaller portions and be satisfied, and we’re still managing to avoid the worst of the things that USED to be our staples – rice, potatoes, and pasta – plus sugar and salt.

It’s easy to fool yourself, that this splurge isn’t ‘that bad’ – but we have systems in place that give us honest information: our scales, our tape measure, our blood sugar monitoring system and our blood pressure kit. Heedless of advice to the contrary, we weigh every morning. We don’t expect huge results, but it serves to remind us in a tangible way that we are trying to make some changes. I measure now at the end of each month. Again, to hold myself accountable and to celebrate any progress. We test for blood sugar and take our blood pressure twice a week, as our doctor advises. My husband is a Type II diabetic, and I seem to be borderline – so we’re really serious about avoiding sugar and things that spike our results. If we have a good number, that’s good. If we don’t, we think about what we ate that could have caused the spike. Again, monitoring is the key.

I would love to say we have continued to lose weight this month; but, so far, not gaining is the best we’ve been able to do. We have played the “too-tired-to-cook” game, where we call in and order fried rice to be picked up, or a pizza. But apparently, not enough of that to cause us to derail completely – so that’s a really good thing.

We are being really active for us – working in the yard, gardening, hauling and laying bricks (plus the shoveling and hard clean-up afterwards) – so that is good, too, as far as our effort to keep moving.

Now we’re going to concentrate on tweaking what we’ve started so that we DON’T just stay the same. Our goal is to lose more weight. My husband thinks he wants to lose another 10 pounds. I would like to lose another 30. This month has just been a place holder. We haven’t LOST ground, but we haven’t lost any more weight, either.

Our goal for June will be to splurge less, plan for cooking more – in batches so I don’t have to start from scratch every night – and actually lose some more lard by the end of the month.

Fingers crossed!

 

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Chicken Recipe is “YUMMY!”

I really like Karly, of ThatLowCarbLife.com.  I’m finding more and more recipes my husband pronounces, “YUMMY!” from her website.

In a post here recently, I told you about her “Easy Baked Chicken Parmesan.” 

This time I tried her “Creamy Lemon Chicken with Garlic.”

 

Karly Campbell – ThatLowCarbLife.com

This is a different flavor than we usually eat, but my husband kept remarking about it as he took bite after bite. :0)

We buy a big tray of huge chicken breasts by Tyson. The first thing I do when I bring it home is cut each breast lengthwise because a whole one is too much for either of us to eat at a meal. I then put 4 halves into a freezer bag, label it, and put it in the freezer. One tray gives us a freezer full of chicken for lots of meals. Then it’s easy to thaw what we need for a recipe, actually making enough for two meals for us. :0)

I go to Karly’s website regularly now, having bookmarked it on my computer.  I like the fact that she uses easy-to-find ingredients. Her directions are clear, and her recipes don’t take a lot of time, and yet you end up with a meal that brings compliments!  Check out ThatLowCarbLife.com if you want to try some YUMMY food!

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Encouragement

Depositphotos

For a long time I’ve been at an ‘awkward stage’ when it comes to finding jeans that fit reasonably.

One of my good friends gave me some jeans to tide me over several months ago. It was funny because women’s sizes are so wonky that some of the smaller ones fit while the larger size was too small!

Anyway, the last couple of times we went bowling, she said my jeans were baggy. My problem was that yes, these were baggy, but the next size down was too small!

My husband and I went to the exclusive department at Walmart yesterday with the goal of either finding a ‘skinny’ cut in my current size or ‘fat’ cut in the next size down.

We ended up with a ‘W’ stretch version of the next size down in petite. (In real English this means I’m short and wide.) I actually did a happy dance (woo-HOOOOO!) in the fitting room when I actually was able to pull them up and zip them with no problem! I came out to where my husband was waiting and he gave them a thumbs up. :0)

We went back and found a second pair, so now I can wear one pair while the other is in the laundry.

Since I’m planning to lose another 30 lbs, these two pairs of jeans will hold me over until I reach another landmark.

Business Victories

 

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Getting the Lard Off Progress To Date

The short answer – I’m down 43 pounds and 47.7 inches. 

Longer answer –

We decided to stop Nutrisystem, figuring that we have learned the lessons they have provided, and now it’s up to us to use them. We had gotten to the point where we were pretty much doing our own thing anyway, and are basically eating poultry or fish, lots of raw veggies and salads, fruit, and nuts.

I’m gathering some nice recipes for the chicken and fish. I’m working at this slowly because particularly at this time of the year, we’re doing a lot outside and I’m too pooped at the end of the day to start a new recipe. We eat a lot of what we call, “Main Meal Salads,” (basically chef salads) for dinner.

One surprising thing was that I’m having to work out a new dosage of thyroid replacement medicine since I’ve lost the weight. (I had Graves Disease and my thyroid was radiated, so I have none. My life now depends on replacing what my body can’t supply anymore.) Finding the right dosage is a bit like growing nerves – slow, gradual, and painful. Having too much or too little thyroid hormone results in basically the same symptoms – and all of them are extremely annoying. So you try a dosage for 6 weeks, get another blood test, change the dosage, try again. The symptoms remain until your brain is happy with the dosage. No shortcuts. We THINK we have the correct dosage now – at least most of the symptoms have decreased at this level.

My exercise efforts are hit and miss despite my best intentions. I’m working in my raised bed, square foot garden, plus weed whacking in the yard, weeding flower beds, etc. By the time I do several sessions of that in a day, I’m too lazy to try to exercise. I have finally learned the big lesson that being active is NOT the same as doing established exercises. The movement is good, but you’re not working the same muscles in the same way as you do when you exercise.

So, I’m feeling guilty a lot, but my priority right now is working outside when I can. When I get things to the stage where I’m basically maintaining my plants, I’ll do better on the exercise – PROMISE. (Okay, I know you’ve heard THAT before…. :0) )

I’m hopeful that when I report again at the end of May, I will have reached 50 lbs off and whatever inches I can manage. Here’s to a better job of getting the lard off!

taolife.com

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Great Low-Carb Recipe

Karly Campbell – That Low Carb Life

 

If you are trying to eat low carb, check out Karly Campbell’s website – That Low Carb Life  

Last night I tried her “Easy Baked Chicken Parmesan.” 

It has 6 grams of carbs, lots of protein, and only 2 grams of sugar (important to us because my husband is a Type II diabetic.)  It was 4 servings.

My husband’s comment – “This is YUMMY!” (And THEN he went back for another serving!) We had this with a side salad and will definitely put this in our ‘make again’ recipe book.

Next time I’ll probably make a double recipe. A serving would be really nice for lunch, or we can have more than one meal with only one cooking session – always a plus for me. :0)

THANK YOU, Karly! I’m eyeing your “Keto Chicken Salad” next.

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Day Four of Being Back on the Horse!

The Funny Beaver

I’m working on Day Four of doing what I’m supposed to do on my eating and exercise plan. I just put the fourth gold star on my calendar for the week, starting with Wednesday.

I’ve lost 3 pounds this week and have exercised every day since the magical Wednesday.

  • Wednesday I did 35 minutes on my elliptical trainer in the garage, albeit slowly. (I had a hitch in my get-a-long with my right hip protesting until I had done about 10 minutes. Then it eased up.)
  • Thursday I did yoga stretches for the first time in too long, and again moved very slowly and carefully. (I got an indication of how messed up I was when I laid down on my back and it took a good minute or so of trying to relax before it didn’t hurt.)
  • Friday I did my “Walking with Annoying Leslie”  video. I was only able to do one mile, rather than two.
  • Today – Saturday – I did the Wii Fit Plus Balance ‘games.’ (I think I’m making progress in my attitude, though, because I actually LAUGHED when they insulted me.) It started with when they weigh you, then announce, “OH! You’ve gained weight since last time! (Imagine what they would have said if I had tried it BEFORE I lost 3 lbs. this week.) Balance is one of my biggest challenges which is why I put up with the insults. I DO get better with practice, and I don’t want to fall on my head or break my bones.
  • Tomorrow – Sunday – I’ll do my dance video.

One thing I did that is helping me stay on track is re-sign-up with MyFitnessPal.com. There are fancier food and exercise tracking sites, but these people have the easiest food tracking system I’ve found. I don’t have to put in EACH ingredient in a recipe, for example. I can check-mark a repeated food each day without having to enter it again. I’m trying to stay under 1200 calories per day, but I’m combining that with recipes from my Keto book and other low-carb books, so I’m not as worried about it – just trying to keep myself honest about what I’m stuffing into my face.

I’m also trying to do

  • something outside each day that the weather is cooperative – such as weed-whacking or gardening.
  • also something cleaning related in the house. Today it was cleaning the screened back porch of a super-thick layer of yellow pollen, dog and cat hair, dirt, and other yuck, so that we can enjoy some meals out there before it gets too hot.

Both of these things make me feel I’m accomplishing something, plus keep me moving.

So far, it’s working.

I’ve lost 40.6 pounds and 43 inches so far. My goal, at this point, is to lose another 30 lbs. I want to be in the average range for my height (and I’m getting SHORTER, rather than taller) on BMI charts, and fit into some reasonable size at a regular department store for clothes, rather than having to hit the fat section of Walmart forever. I want to be as healthy as I can for my age (72) and not be restricted so much on what I can do without my body complaining.

One day at a time – today I’ve done my exercising, cleaned the back porch, and now I’ll head out to do some weed whacking.

I hope you’re having a happy day.

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First Harvest of Spring 2019

My broccoli is a bit scraggly-looking, but it should be tender and flavorful. I’m going to use it to make soup.

 

Unless something bad happens, it looks like we’ll have the best lettuce ever. This was harvested today – the outer leaves from just three of our plants. This filled two gallon fridge bags. We’ll sure enjoy some of this for our main meal salad dinner tonight!

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Trying to Get Back Up on the Horse

Kveller.com

In the interest of full disclosure, I’m up 5 pounds lately, so have lost 38 pounds and 43 inches  from my lardiest.  I want to lose 32 pounds more and whatever inches go with that. I’ll try for 2 lbs. per week.

My husband and I have made several decisions as to how we want to eat now. We are STILL trying to eat all the remaining Nutrisystem food we have on hand, even though we stopped deliveries a couple of months or so ago.  We were thinking of changing to A La Carte and then decided we have learned all we’re going to from the program and it’s time we did our own thing.

We’ve learned a lot about portion sizes (we were each eating for about 6). We are eating a lot more veggies, mainly poultry or fish as entrees, lots of salad, fruit and nuts. We are eating as little sugar as possible and have also mostly given up salt, except for a little bit in recipes. I’m drinking a lot more water and my husband likes Arizona Zero Peach Iced Tea for cold drinks. I still have my coffee (black) and my husband enjoys Sugar Free Alpine Spiced Apple Cider mix for a hot drink. (He is a Type II diabetic, but is doing super-well with his blood sugar now.) We have mostly given up rice, pasta, and potatoes. My husband is gravitating toward eating lunch and dinner with some snacks in-between. He is almost to his weight goal.

I’m continuing to TRY to exercise daily, but I am the best excuse-maker who ever lived.  Today, though, I finally got back on my elliptical trainer in our garage and did 35 minutes. I had to go more slowly, since my right hip was ‘catching’ a bit until I finally loosened up, but I feel fine now, and I put a gold star on my calendar for the day. :0)

My goal is to exercise daily, but I tend to beg off if I’m working in the yard much of the day. I’m going to TRY to do the exercise in the morning, rather than waiting until the day is in full swing.

Wish me luck?

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Getting the Lard Off Results – as of March 2019

pinterest.com

I have a whole list of excuses, but – bottom line – I didn’t make much progress this month – except on finding some good, healthy recipes that we can eat on a regular basis.

To date – since my lardiest – I’ve lost 43 pounds and 44.2 inches. 

My goal is to lose another 30 pounds or so to get to the place where I can quit trying to get taller and my BMI chart is singing ‘hallelujah,’ – or at least, ‘you’ve come a long way, baby.’ Whatever inches that go with that will be much appreciated. I would love to get to the point where I don’t have to worry about ‘getting into’ clothes. I don’t really care what size it is. I would just like to be able to walk into a regular department or other clothes store and be confident that I can find my size and that the garment has a reasonable chance of fitting.

The biggest goal, though, is health. I’m newly determined – since the death of my brother this month – to do everything I can to improve my health as much as possible. That means a healthy weight and lots and lots of moving.

I’ve used lots of excuses re getting off my duff, too. I’m TRYING to do something different each day to keep getting my body’s attention. I’m already more active than usual, getting my veggie garden started and general working in the yard stuff.  But I use THAT as an excuse to forego my scheduled exercise. (I know, it’s pathetic, but there it is.)

I’m going to try to get started with getting on the elliptical trainer in the garage today. I’ll just worry about today for now.

Hopefully, when I report to you again at the end of April, I can say I’ve made some real progress.

All appendages crossed!

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Stumbling Block

Jeff Jett – LinkedIn

For the last several weeks I’ve been fighting to lose more weight. I’ve hit a definite stumbling block, playing yo-yo and saying harsh words to my scales.

Since I started seriously trying to lose the lard, I’ve lost 43 pounds and 44.2 inches. I know that everyone hits bumps that cause consternation, but this seemed to be something more.

A blood test recently showed different results than I was expecting – borderline diabetes (!) and my thyroid hormone levels were askew. I also showed higher blood pressure at my appointment, even though I’ve taken medicine that controlled this for years. Surprises, to be sure!

(My thyroid was radiated years ago due to Grave’s Disease, so my thyroid hormone level medicine and dosage is serious business. Once I was diagnosed, it took a full year to find the correct dosage.) My doctor lowered the level on my thyroid medicine and told me to watch what I was eating, monitor blood pressure and blood sugar a couple of times a week for six weeks and get another blood test.

I did this, having the blood test last week. My blood sugar was again normal (whew!) so I don’t have to worry about that, other than watching what I eat (which I’m already doing.) My blood pressure was better without changing meds. My thyroid hormone level was STILL too high, so my doctor has lowered it again and wants me to have another blood test in 6 weeks.

I did a bit of research and found out that weight is the largest determining factor on finding the correct dosage of Levothyroxine – the thyroid hormone. Since I’ve lost some weight, apparently it took my brain awhile longer to figure out it wasn’t happy with my dosage. The article also said that some results of incorrect dosage were weight gain and fatigue, among other things.

SO – not only am I fighting too-much-food-in-mouth disease, but also incorrect dosage of thyroid hormone due to my weight loss. HUH!  I’ve decided to keep on keepin’ on – hoping that my brain decides it is happy with the new dosage while I continue to try to eat right and exercise, and I’ll try to be patient until I start losing again.

 

 

 

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Diet Recipe Experiment a Success!

tvoydosug.com

I’ve told you in the past that my husband and I are learning more and more about healthy eating while trying to get the lard off.

We have been on NutriSystem, but are now on hiatus from the program, trying to eat our way through the rest of the items they have sent. We’re eating more and more on our own, using techniques and ideas gleaned through the Leaf section of the website, rather than only eating ‘flex meals’ once a week. The weight is coming off slower, but we feel we need to learn to live in the real world.

My husband really loved their pulled pork entree.  Of course, they then cancelled that offering, resulting in my husband deciding he would stop the program. I got him to reconsider, making our own pulled pork from a recipe I found. (You can find the recipe in the “NutriSystem Flex Meals We Like” category on the blog. ) He really liked that. Between their BBQ chicken and ‘my’ pulled pork, he was a happy camper.

Since we read a book called, The Longevity Code, we have decided to eat little or no red meat and no pork, opting for chicken and fish.

My husband ate the last of the pulled pork sadly and was again threatening mutiny. Yesterday I tried an experiment – substituting chicken breasts for the pork loin – all other parts of the recipe the same. My husband helped ‘pull’ the chicken and then we measure 3 oz in each of several containers. He ate one of these last night with a salad. His comment after eating a bite was, “This is YUMMY!”

I’m finding more and more healthy recipes online that we like. We laugh at the ones that aren’t really our cup of tea, tossing the recipe, add changes to some of the ones we keep. I feel good that we ARE learning to cut out MOST added sugar and salt (adding less than called for in recipes that are otherwise good for us), white rice, most bread (other than a slice here and there of oatmeal bread), potatoes, and pasta.

We are eating more veggies – raw and cooked, more fruit, and some nuts.

Little by little we’re shedding a lot of bad habits and building new, better ones. Hopefully, our efforts to lose the lard will get us to our goals.

 

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Happy Pat on the Head

I’m a sucker for all kinds of ‘feel-able’ pats on the head: gold stars on my desk calendar when I’ve done whatever exercise is scheduled for the day; and these cute little bears that NutriSystem sends out for each 10 pounds one loses.

As you can see from the picture above, I’ve gotten my 4th bear – the one for 40 lbs off. (Actually, right now I’m at 43 pounds off  :0) )  There is also 44.2 inches less of me than there used to be.

I have a good start now. I will try to get another 30 pounds off, and whatever number of inches that goes with that any my exercises.

The really big thing is that I FEEL BETTER.  I’m 72 as of yesterday, and I can honestly say I feel better than I did a year ago. On March 9th of 2020, I hope to be able to say the same thing, whether or not I’ve reached my weight loss goal.

Smaller, but again – a VISIBLE thing  – is that I’m able to fit in favorite clothes I’ve kept in closets for years, hoping that ‘one day’ I would be able to wear them again. There are still several things in the ‘hope’ area of my guest room closet. :0)  I’m between sizes on jeans right now, for example. The size I’m wearing is a bit baggy, but I’m still too lardy for the next size down. I’m also able to order some smaller sizes online, too.

I’m sleeping better with the loss of the lard and my efforts to move more. I get up from the computer after I post something here, do some chore inside or outside before posting again, for example. I’m also trying to do my exercises like a good old girl daily. I’m more successful some weeks than others. I’m doing something different each day – yoga and abdominal exercises one day, a dance video another, the Wii Fit Plus ‘games’ for balance and reaction time (I’m still awful and the program is still insulting me), the walking with Annoying Leslie one day, and the elliptical trainer in the garage one day. Now that spring is near (thank GOODNESS!) I’m working in the yard when the weather permits.

Though I’m getting old-in-the-tooth, I can usually gather enough energy to continue going through the house, concentrating on purging, then cleaning and reorganizing one area at a time. Today it’s the supplies shelves in our office after we go grocery shopping.

Motivation is high though results are slow. I think the older you get the harder it is to get any lard off or make appreciable difference in fitness or stamina, but I’m game as long as I’m breathing!

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Filed under Are YOU also older than Dirt?, Attitude, DIET!, exercise, quality of life, taking care of yourself

Not ONLY…

Tips4Home.com

I guess it’s this cold weather we’re having. That’s my excuse and I’ll stick with it!

Yesterday it was like I had a tapeworm!  I not only wanted comfort food (read heavy calorie, high fat, hot, delicious), but a LOT of it! I simply used every trip anywhere near the kitchen to stuff my face. UGH. I gained a pound a half yesterday!

 

flickr.com

Hopefully, I can do better today….

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The Long and Short of It

Jeff Jett – LinkedIn

The short answer is 43 pounds lost and 44.2 inches lost to date, since my ‘heaviest and lardiest.’

The longer answer is we’re trying to take care of ourselves, now that my husband and I are getting ‘long-in-the-tooth’ and would like to maintain or increase our quality of life for as long as we can, enjoying our lives to the fullest.

Since we both have health issues, my husband gave up added sugar and I gave up added salt. We are limiting our red beef, concentrating more on chicken and fish, veggies, fruit, and nuts. We’re both trying to drink more water. I’m trying to exercise. My husband said, “Now that I turned 75, I don’t HAVE to worry about exercising.” – as if he ever has. I am exercising more than I ever have, with the exception of when I was teaching swimming every summer and working in a restaurant part-time to help pay my way through college.  I continue to encourage him to exercise.

I’m concentrating on stretching, balance, core strength, and reaction time. Basically just trying to consciously move more. I’m doing a combination of yoga, abdominal exercises, walking, elliptical trainer, dance, and Wii Fit Plus each week. Sometimes I’m successful and get it all in, sometimes not. I’m trying to pat myself on the head (and give myself a gold star on my desk calendar) when I do well and not beat myself up when I don’t.

The same on eating. My husband is almost where he needs to be on weight. I still have a lot to lose to get to my goal of being in the healthy range on BMI and insurance charts. We’ve been on Nutrisystem, but are on hiatus now, trying to eat our way through the remaining food while not having more sent. In May we’ll probably change to A LA CARTE. We are doing our own thing a lot of the day and are needing the packaged stuff less and less. I’m substituting healthy recipes we really like for the entrees.

We’re giving ourselves permission to eat out when the mood strikes – a quality of life issue for us. Last night we ate dinner at The Dari, one of the new restaurants in Greenwood, Arkansas. Last night we got a seafood platter and two plates. This gave each of us plenty of food without overeating. We enjoyed our splurge/treat without breaking our diet. I made it a point to ask at the front counter who was responsible for the seafood. Several of the cooks raised their hands. I gave them a two-thumbs up, a big grin, and told them they were WONDERFUL.

I have to get a blood test on the 18th of March to see if I’ve improved in a couple of areas. Fingers crossed.

 

 

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Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Are YOU also older than Dirt?, Challenges, DIET!, exercise, Healthy Eating, quality of life, taking care of yourself

Sunday Afternoon Project

Alamy

I’ve told you that we’re becoming more independent on our cooking and eating now that we’ve been on Nutrisystem for about 8 months. We’re going to switch to their A LA CARTE plan, only ordering what we truly want each month.

This means I’m cooking more for dinner mainly. We’re eating whatever I cook plus a large side salad most evenings to try to watch our portions on the cooked part of the meal.

We also read The Longevity Code and are trying to eat more poultry and fish, rather than red meat, lots of veggies (raw and cooked) and avoid things like white flour, pasta, rice, potatoes, etc. We’ve already cut out as much sugar as we can, and I’m not using any added salt these days.

Today’s project is condensing my recipes into hopefully one notebook. I’ve been gathering them from various sources, and I had piles of them in the kitchen, office, and in three different notebooks. I’m trying to discard recipes that have a bunch of stuff we’re now trying to avoid. Some can be altered into more healthy recipes with some substitution.

I’m about 2/3 finished with the project now. I’m going to feel better when the recipe I’m looking for is easy to find and I’m not distracted by my old style of cooking or my taste buds teased with things that are now definitely off the list!

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Decisions on Trying to Lose the Lard

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My husband and I have been on Nutrisystem since April of 2018. We have each lost about 30 pounds.

My husband would like to lose another 10 pounds, but basically he is already at a healthy weight. He is a Type II diabetic, so we’ve been trying to really watch the sugar. He has brought his A1C down from a high of over 16 to 5.4 in January. We monitor his blood sugar twice a week.

I have another 30 pounds to lose. I’m doing this very slowly. Apparently being old, short, and female is a triple whammy as far as speed in losing weight. I’m not in this, though, to lose a certain amount of weight in as short a time as possible. I’m trying to get to a healthy weight for my height (though I’ve tried to GROW TALLER so I don’t need to lose as much weight). I want to keep the weight off.

We are narrowing the foods we enjoy via Nutrisystem (NS). I think this is healthy, because part of the program is learning to cook in a healthy fashion for yourself. We are doing this more and more, learning things to avoid, good things we can ‘throw into the pot’ to increase nutrition, and most of all, portion control. Apparently each of us was ‘eating-for-6-or-8’ so it was quite a shock to learn what is considered a ‘serving.’

To this end, we’re on hiatus from the monthly deliveries of NS food. We’re eating our way through the remaining food. We’ll probably switch to the A LA CARTE membership in May, so we can order the few things we really like and be on our own for the rest. We’re eating a lot of raw veggies and salads, cooked veggies, fruit, nuts, poultry and fish.

We are also following advice from the doctor who wrote “The Longevity Code.” Eating little or no red meat, switching to chicken and fish, eating more veggies, no white stuff (rice, pasta, potatoes, wheat flour.) We’re taking some supplements we didn’t know about, as well.

I’m finding more and more healthy recipes we like on the net. The newest thing I’m trying today is “Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili” from Delish.com

We’re combining the best advice from many sources to come up with something we can stick with – and enjoy – for the rest of our lives.

Other than trying to eat in a reasonable, adult fashion, I’m trying to exercise.

Bored Panda

The big thing I’m trying to do is get my poor, old body to NOTICE that I’m doing a good variety of things:

  • elliptical trainer
  • yoga and abdominal exercises
  • walking video
  • Wii Fit Plus (for balance and reaction time)
  • dance video

I’m also carrying an ‘el cheapo’ pedometer in my pocket as a reminder to get up and move more.  I do something here at the computer, then get up and handle another part of the laundry, then something else, and then come back later to a sitting thing, either here or in my art room. Then I get up again and do the same cycle over again all through the day. The result is a much better number of steps than I used to get, though I haven’t even begun to THINK about getting to 10,000 steps and over, as my SIL does…. :0)  (yeah. I’m bragging about YOU, ML.)

Good results so far are a loss of 30 pounds and a bit more than 30 inches. I feel more energetic and my body FEELS looser, more able to get up and down. (it used to be that the biggest part of the exercise was trying to get myself up off the floor before having to call for a crane to come help.) I am more flexible with less pain in my joints. I’m more optimistic about trying new exercises. I’ll never be what I call an exercising NUT – in that I have to use all kinds of incentives to actually DO it, such as a gold star for the day on my desk calendar, but I AM happy about the improvements I’m feeling.

The biggest remaining factor – other than the 30 more pounds I would like to lose, is that for some unknown reason, my last blood test showed higher blood sugar and a too-high dosage on my thyroid med. (I had Graves Disease and my thyroid was killed by radiation several years ago.) I have no idea why the blood test showed these new results, but I’m trying a new dosage of meds and I’m monitoring MY blood sugar twice a week when I check my husband’s for six weeks.

I have another appt with another blood test in 6 weeks. Hopefully, that test will show a lot of improvement in my blood sugar and a brain happy with my dosage of thyroid hormone. Wish me luck!

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Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Challenges, Changes, DIET!, exercise, The Longevity Code - Dr. Kris Verburgh

The Verdict is In

My husband gave it the Basic Broccoli Soup a try and doesn’t care for it. I think it tastes really good. If you’re interested, here is the recipe –

Basic Broccoli Soup – Dr. Kris Verburgh, The Longevity Code

Basic Broccoli Soup 

¼ cup olive oil

2 garlic cloves, chopped  (I used minced garlic from a jar)

4 cups water

1 pound broccoli, chopped into bite-sized pieces

2 vegetable bullion cubes (I used chicken)

Pepper

Finely chopped fresh parsley

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes. Pour the water into the pan and add the broccoli, bouillon cubes and pepper. Simmer for about 40 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and blend the broccoli with an electric mixer or immersion blender to puree. Serve with parsley.

Tip –

You can also add 1T dried basil, 1 bay leaf (removed before blending), and 1 small, chopped onion, for extra flavor. (I did this)

You can also make the soup thicker by using more veggies – for example, substituting 1 lb 10 oz of veggies for the water. ( I’m thinking I’ll add spinach leaves to this next time.)

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Broccoli Soup Experiment

 

I’m making soup today – for the first time – ever. I know, since I’m older than dirt, this is probably a surprising statement. My mom made a few dishes that were absolutely spectacular, such as spaghetti sauce, chili, and some casseroles; but mainly, she cooked from many boxes and cans. We always ate Campbell’s soup.

I told you we were impressed when we read The Longevity Code by Dr. Kris Verburgh recently, and that there were a few really basic recipes in the book. One was “Basic Broccoli Soup”  and that’s what I have cooking now. When my timer goes off in about 15 minutes, I’m supposed to use an immersion blender (I actually HAVE one!) to puree the broccoli.

I expect my husband will be UNDERwhemed, since he only eats steamed broccoli because he knows he should and because I fix it and put it on his plate. I really don’t expect him to do more than taste it, but one can hope. I’m mainly fixing it for ME because I love broccoli, and like the idea of being able to microwave home-cooked soup and eat it for a meal or a snack any time I would like.

If this recipe is good – or can be tweaked – I’ll post it here.

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Exercise?!

QuotesHumor.com

I missed my exercise yesterday, but I just finished what I was SUPPOSED to do yesterday – yoga and abdominal exercises – so I got my gold star on my desk calendar.  :0)  I’ll have to keep going through Saturday this week to get everything in:

  • Monday – elliptical trainer
  • Tuesday – yoga and abdominal exercises
  • Wednesday – walking video
  • Thursday – Wii Fit Plus ‘games’
  • Friday – dance video

I told you yesterday about a book that impressed my husband and me – The Longevity Code.  He included several recipes, and we got the ingredients we could yesterday. I ordered almond meal today and hope to have it by Friday. As I try these recipes, I’ll post ones we’ll make again to see if you would like to try them, too.

I hope you’re enjoying a wonderful day.

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The Longevity Code

 

I’ve just finished reading and taking notes on The Longevity Code by Kris Verburgh, MD.

My husband and I found it very interesting because it discusses why we age, and what – if anything – we can do to slow the process.

He suggests supplements to add if you’re not taking them already, plus discusses what foods to avoid to be as healthy as you can for as long as you can. He is NOT selling HIS supplements or special foods from HIS source – a thing that would have turned us off.

Some of his suggestions we were doing already. He gives a few recipes to get you started on eating in a healthy fashion that you can add to things you are already doing.

He doesn’t claim you’ll stop or reverse aging, or any nonsense like that. He IS suggesting ways you can improve your health.

We found the book impressive and interesting. We got the supplements we weren’t already taking and went shopping for some basic supplies today. We plan to start implementing many of his suggestions right away.

We figure – What can we lose?

 

 

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The Long View on Our Diet and Exercise Efforts

gif-finder.com – Use Your Blinker

Over a year ago I was at my heaviest. My joints hurt. I didn’t exercise, and didn’t even want to THINK about it. I was depressed. My clothes kept becoming too small. I couldn’t shop at regular stores for clothes anymore. My digestion was poor. I was on a lot of medications. I dreaded going for doctor appointments, and especially having to get on the scales.

My husband and I tried low carb, and we did some good, and then we started Nutrisystem in April of last year. It was May before we could get our act together on eating, and even longer for me to start trying to move more.

I measured and weighed this morning. We’re still trying to lose what we gained during the holidays and our son’s visit, but we’re getting there. I looked at where I was at my heaviest for inspiration and motivation today.

Since my heaviest, I’ve lost 39.2 pounds and 47.7 inches. I’m trying to exercise daily and consciously get up and move more during the day. I love being at my computer, but between sessions I get up and DO something – like my exercise for the day, or another session on the great purge of my house I started last year. I’m now on Phase II and am working in the pantry today.

I want to lose another 30 pounds so I’ll be in the ‘healthy’ range on BMI and insurance charts. I’ve improved my numbers on blood tests a lot since I’ve gotten serious about trying to get healthier, and so has my husband, who has Type 2 Diabetes. (His blood sugar was 84 this morning!) We have gotten better numbers on our cholesterol, lipids, etc., and our doctor is nodding happily. (We hope she’ll do so again at our 6 month check-up on Monday)

I want to have GOOD numbers on blood pressure, blood tests, etc. And I would LIKE to improve my strength, balance, stability, flexibility and more so I can do what I’d like to do for as long as humanly possible. It would be great if I could lessen joint pain, too.

So – even though we’re not back to where we were before the holidays yet, the long-term difference is good.  We both weigh significantly less than we did at one point. We’re healthier than we were over a year ago, and we’re taking better care of ourselves.

My husband is reading something on his Kindle that is catching his attention about health – something that used to be quite unusual for him. He said that people whose waistlines were 80% of their height lived, on average, 20 years less than folks who had more moderate waistlines. He also read that salmon is good for us, and asked if I would fix some.

It’s now on tonight’s menu!

 

 

 

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Muffin Recipe – Thumbs UP

“5-Ingredient Banana Nut Muffins” – The Leaf – Nutrisystem

My husband and I each had a muffin for our mid-afternoon snack.

Both of us gave our muffin a thumbs up. It was chewy, crunchy, and sweet.  It has rolled oats, ripe bananas, raisins cinnamon and nuts. Mine didn’t look as good as these, but the muffin tasted good and was filling.  I’ll make this recipe again.

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Turning Over Several New Leaves

5 Ingredient Banana Nut Muffins – The Leaf Recipes – Nutrisystem

LEAF ONE:  My husband and I decided that we would stop the regular Nutrisystem program for a while. Due to our doing our own thing and our son coming home for a three-week visit, we had an over-abundance of NS meals we needed to eat. The Nutrisystem people were kind enough to honor our request for a hiatus in shipments until the first of March. We since have made another big decision: we’re going to stop the regular programs we were on in favor of ordering A LA CARTE for each of us. This way we can get what we want and not have things we’re not crazy about, but have paid for to eat. I also priced what we plan to order in March, and we’ll save significant money. Win/win.

LEAF TWO:  I’ve decided to try more of the flex meals and snacks, cooking more than I have been – (other than comfort food things, such as beef stew.) Some snacks I’ve been eating are bothering me and I want to have healthy snacks on hand. I already eat a lot of raw veggies at lunch, so I’ve been scrambling a bit. Today I fixed “5-Ingredient Banana Nut Muffins” from the Flex Snack Group of Recipes on The Leaf, a part of the Nutrisystem website. The muffins are cooling on the counter as we speak. I’m hoping they’ll be yummy.

My husband was asking that I fix chicken tonight, so we bought some boneless, skinless chicken breasts while we were out. Tonight I’m going to try another new recipe, “Baked Chicken Tenders.” 

“Baked Chicken Tenders” – The Leaf – Nurtrisystem

LEAF THREE:  You’ve probably heard me say this before, but I’m saying it AGAIN – I’m going to try to get into my new routine of daily exercise.

This morning I did 35 minutes on my elliptical trainer in the garage. I’m trying to do something different each day to make my body sit up and take notice. Tomorrow I’ll do half an hour or so of yoga and abdominal exercises. Wednesday I’ll do a walking video. Thursday I’ll do Wii Fit Plus, particularly for the balance and reaction time games. Friday I’ll do my new dance/exercise video. Exercise on the weekends will be optional – or will be make up days for anything I missed.

I’ve been stuck at 30 pounds and 30 inches off for quite a while, mostly due to my own failings. I would like to continue on from here, making some good progress again.

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BONUS!

Lifebuzz

I’m about 2/3 finished with my project of going through the Christmas decorations in the basement. I emptied the three bins, and several more I found that didn’t have much in them. I made a major decision and brought up the big fake Christmas tree we’ve had for years. We have another, much smaller tree that we can decorate when we want to. I like the idea of some other family enjoying the large tree, handmade stand my husband constructed, plus ornaments that are too large for our smaller tree.

BONUS: My husband bought me a really nice, furry blue jacket with a hood several years ago. We’ve kept it in a bin down in the basement because I couldn’t wear it after a couple of years. Neither of us wanted to give it away. I tried it on today and it’s LOOSE!  I wore it when I came upstairs. My husband recognized it immediately and broke out in a grin. It’s now in the closet, ready to put on! HOORAY!!!!!

I have one large leaf bag full of things we’ll donate, plus the tree, so far. I have more to go through in the basement and then can make final decisions, bring everything upstairs and put it into the bin in the living room. I may have to pare down what I’m keeping again as I see what will fit in the ONE bin I’m allowing for decorations!

I’m taking a break, drinking a big bottle of water, and resting awhile before giving it another shot.

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Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, DIET!, exercise, Housekeeping - Maintenance, I'm a slob, Organizing/DeCluttering

Round Figures

Ali Express

 

“Doctors tell us there are over seven million people who are overweight. These, of course, are only round figures.” ~ Unknown

__________________

If you’ve been reading my blog, you know my husband and I are on NutriSystem to lose the lard and to help control my husband’s Type II Diabetes.

He has given up sugar and I’ve given up salt – now concentrating on choosing what we eat much more carefully.

Our son is visiting from Thailand for the first time in over three years – and to say we’re over the moon is a vast understatement. He is very good about either fixing his own food, eating beef stew I made and put in the fridge, or eating with us. We couldn’t ask for a more accommodating person. We are free to eat our Nutrisystem as usual, having our flex meals and doing fine through the holidays. He has encouraged and applauded our efforts to get and stay as healthy as we can.

What has happened, though, is that we’re using the fact he’s here – and it’s a holiday – to splurge. We’re going out to eat more, I fixed a turkey and all the fixings for our Christmas dinner yesterday, we’re eating stew and toasted bread to go along with it, plus….. you get the picture.

I’ve continued to exercise most days – but not when my husband is watching TV in the living room or asleep in the living room in his chair. The living room is really the only room in the house large enough for me to do my thing, other than when I’m on the elliptical trainer in the garage. It’s the only place we have where I can play my videos – yoga, walking, and a new one I just got where exercise is achieved through dancing your head off – something that really appeals to me. I haven’t tried it yet because – yeah – the living room is occupied.

We could beat ourselves up over regaining a few pounds and not exercising every day as we should, or we can relax, totally enjoy the holiday, the food, the entertaining, the going out to eat, the meals with our son and then get back on the horse when the holidays are over.

We decided that the Nutrisystem basics of portion control, eating something about every three hours, control of our calories, eating NS foods that are low in salt, sugar, fat and calories, plus moving more is a lifestyle change – not something we’re ‘trying on for size’ and abandoning either when the newness wears off or we actually reach our weight goals. This is the way we want to eat and live the rest of our lives. We’re learning to do our flex meals like sensible people – except over the holidays – and we’ve adopted some really good, healthy eating changes.

We admit we’re flawed humans who succumb to excess given ample opportunity. We’re enjoying every minute and we’ve agreed to hit the ground running when the holidays are over. We’ve delayed getting to our goals, but not abandoned the end game.

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Progress Report – Trying to Get the Lard Off

I’m still at 31 pounds off and 31 inches off.

Really slow progress, but during the holidays, I think holding our own is pretty good, considering all the social eating we’re doing.

The thing that is different is my exercising.

I’m trying to change my activity each day, hoping to get my body’s attention. I’m doing –

  • Yoga and abdominal exercises one day
  • 35 minutes on the elliptical trainer another
  • Wii Fit Plus exercises one day each week
  • My walking video one day
  • then start again from the top

I’ve said some disparaging things about my walking video, but I have to tell you that, though I find her annoying, I DO feel I’ve had a workout at the end of the 2-mile marker. My goal is to do that, plus the exercises she has AFTER the two miles one day soon.

We’ve been having a lot of friends over lately, for the holidays – but also the fact our son is home from Thailand for the first time in 3 years and we want them to reconnect. We’re having a blast doing that, but it all involves eating something. At this time of the year, serving Nutrisystem diet food or even snacks is definitely a no-no, so we’ve been eating outside our normal parameters many days during the week and will continue this until after our son leaves. If we can just MAINTAIN, rather than GAIN during this time, I’ll be really happy.

I hope that you are having great times with friends and family, too. This is usually a bittersweet time of the year for us, having very few family members left and the ones we have far away. Our son has brought us joy this year and we’re enjoying every minute.

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Getting the Lard Off Progress Report – 12-6-2018

Chicago Tribune

30.6 pounds and 30.05 inches so far.

My husband and I have kind of settled into raw veggies and dip for lunches (I add a hard-boiled egg or string cheese, and my husband adds barbecued chicken with no bread) and a main meal salad for dinner, so we’re awash in Nutrisystem entrees right now. (My husband received his frozen and non-frozen this week. I received my frozen and should get my non-frozen soon.)

I called customer service today to see if I could delay our next order. Raphael couldn’t have been nicer or more helpful. He was encouraging about our efforts to date and we agreed to delay our next order for 90 days. If we want to order a la carte before then, fine. If we want to shorten the delay, fine. If we need to delay it further, fine.  No muss, no fuss, no problem.  How wonderful is that!?!?!

Our only complaint is that they no longer offer pulled pork. My husband really liked that, and it almost derailed us on our weight loss efforts. They DO offer barbecued chicken, so he has substituted that, and I make him pulled pork and we freeze it into individual portions for him.

Our son is coming to visit Monday, planning to stay about 3 weeks. We’re really into the plan now, particularly since we can have ‘flex’ meals, so it shouldn’t be a problem for everyone to eat what they would like.  We’ll go grocery shopping as soon as he likes and get what we don’t have.

I’m feeling good about the progress my husband and I have made. He’s down about 30 lbs., too, and has lost almost 6 inches from his waist. He was wearing 38/30 jeans when we started and is now ALMOST comfortable in 32/30’s now. :0)  He is trying to do sit ups, something he hasn’t done since he was in the Marine Corps from 1961-65, so I’m proud of his efforts. Even more important is his effort to cut out as much sugar as possible, since he’s a Type II diabetic. His blood sugar reading this morning was 96. (100 or below is NORMAL).  I’m doing more exercise than I have done in many, many years – doing yoga and abdominal exercises one day, and the elliptical trainer the next. (Today is the elliptical). I’m feeling stronger and a bit more flexible.

So, we’ll keep on keepin’ on, and we’re pleased that we are on a program where the company will work with us.  My goal is to be ordering at least one – if not TWO – 10 lbs weight loss NS bears with our next order! :0)

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Filed under Challenges, Changes, DIET!, exercise, getting the lard off, Great Companies Who Deserve Your Business, taking care of yourself