I really should actually be studying right now, for the final exam for my differential diagnosis class, which is tomorrow night, BUT I feel like writing a blog post, so I’m gonna go ahead and do that while I feel like it, because if I don’t, who knows how long it will be before I get around to it again? I was supposed to be working today and tomorrow, but the urgent care that I just started working for is brand new and is still under construction, and there’s been a delay on opening, so I have an unexpected, but rather welcome, two days off. I say that I have two days off, but in reality, I also have about 10 hours of lectures to catch up on and a final exam tomorrow….and a final exam on Wednesday……and one on Friday, but you know – it’s days off from work so that’s cool, and having extra time to study takes a lot of the stress away from the preparation for those exams.
SO! Today was the first day of my switch to the 4 and 2 plan, which means that I had 2 lean and green meals and 4 Optavia fuelings. I also ran today – 1.5 miles at a fairly brisk pace. I’m just easing back into running this week, so I’m keeping the distances short. My full marathon isn’t until the first weekend in June, so I’m not going to start hard-core training for that until I’m 16 weeks away.
It’s weird, actually, now that I have developed the habits that I have on the 5 and 1 program, to be in a position now, where I need to watch my intake in order to prevent further weight loss. But if there is one important thing that being on this program has taught me, it’s that it is absolutely essential to be conscious of what one is doing, nutrition-wise. That was important when I was looking to lose weight, and its equally important now, when I’m looking to maintain where I’m at, and make sure I’m supported in staying healthy while I train for a marathon. When I was on the 5 & 1, it was a no brainer – all I had to do was eat my 5 fuelings every 2-3 hours and make sure my lean and greens were on point. Now, however, I’m using MyFitnessPal to track my status. I have a Garmin watch, which works with MyFitnessPal – so they communicate with each other. So the Garmin tells MyFitnessPal what my activity looks like for the day, and based on that, it adds to my recommended caloric intake in order to support the activity level that I’m at. It’s great to have this technology – it makes it really easy. I’m pretty sure a Fitbit and a hundred other devices can do the same thing. But, before I get more into all of the details of where I’m at today, let me just recap food-prep Sunday.
So every Sunday, me and my friend Lara, who’s on the program, and for the past two weeks, my friend Sarah – who is just starting the program, get together and prepare our lean and green meals for the week. This has actually become a really fun weekly event that we all look forward to – and it makes it SO easy to stay on track throughout the upcoming week. We spend a total of about 3-4 hours every Sunday doing this, and I just think it is 1000% worth the time and effort. I am an extremely firm believer in meal prep. Period. For me, personally, this whole program would have been a total fail without it. That might not be true for everybody, but it’s definitely true for me. And besides – doing it gives me a weekly opportunity to bond with my girlfriends, and for us to support each other in what we’re up to with all of this. It’s just all good!
So this week, we made:
Salad with shrimp, boiled egg, romaine lettuce and red pepper – this is 184 calories, 7.1g carb, 6.2g fat and 24.5g protein. It is simply 2 cups of chopped romaine lettuce, 1/2 cup of red pepper and grape tomatoes, 3.5 oz of cooked shrimp and 1 chopped boiled egg. I just squeeze some lemon over it and add some salt and pepper and it is really yummy.
Grilled chicken with mushrooms and steamed broccoli: this is 206 calories, 7.6g carb, 6.9g fat and 36.6g protein. It is 6oz of boneless, skinless chicken breast with carne asada seasoning on it, grilled on my cast iron grill pan with 1/2 cup mushrooms sautéed with cooking spray and 1 cup of steamed broccoli. I know that this meal sounds very boring and simple, but the carne asada seasoning makes it quite delicious. It gives it just a bit of kick. Grilling the chicken just to a point where its a tiny bit pink in the middle makes it perfect and juicy once it’s reheated on either the stovetop or microwave.
Turkey mini-meatloaf with miso-sesame green beans. This is about 189 calories – 7.6g carb, 4.9g fat, 28.1g protein. This is 5 oz of 85% lean ground turkey mixed with 1/4 cup of shredded zucchini, mushrooms and onion – which makes the meatloaf super-moist. There is also some chopped fresh Italian parsley and salt and pepper in the meatloaf mix. To make the green beans, I sautéed the shitake mushrooms in cooking spray, added garlic and then mixed miso paste, rice vinegar, water and sesame oil. The steamed green beans, mushrooms and miso-sauce all get mixed together and then everything is sprinkled with sesame seeds. And, OMG – this entire meal is absolutely TO. DIE. FOR. It is so unbelievably good. I mean, all of this food is good, but this one is a definite keeper!
So that’s our meal prep for this week. We are all pretty excited about it. Just to recap – the formula for the lean and greens is 5, 6 or 7 oz of lean protein, depending on what the protein is, and the lean-ness of said protein. Along with it goes 3 servings of vegetables. One serving is generally 1/2 cup, unless its some kind of raw greens, in which case one serving is 1 cup. It’s that simple. For the meals that we created this week, with the proteins purchased at Costco and the veggies purchased at Smiths, it cost about $35 for 7 meals, or 5 bucks per meal. Not bad, if you ask me.
Today, for breakfast, I had an Optavia peanut butter crisp bar and 2 cups of coffee at about 6:30. My mission today was to study, but we had to get groceries first so we dropped Landon off at daycare at around 8, and then went grocery shopping. By the time we got home from doing that, it was almost 10 and I was famished so I actually ate 1/2 of one of the mini-turkey meatloaves that we made yesterday with a coconut La Croix. I ate lunch at noon – I had the shrimp salad – and then I went for a 1.5 mile run at around 1:30. At around 2 I had an Optavia mocha blast shake – it was a bit early, but I needed to have something post-run. I also had a little bag of Medi-Fast sea-salt popcorn while I continued to study. I took Landon to his physical therapy appointment from about 3:30 until about 5 and then when I got home I had the grilled chicken/mushrooms/broccoli, which really filled me up. I gave Landon his dinner, played with him a bit, gave him a bath, read him some stories and put him to bed and that brings me to this point. I have to study some more tonight, and while I do that, I’m going to have an Optavia spiced gingerbread with some sleepytime herbal tea, and that’s my day as far as nutrition goes. In addition, I have had about a gallon of water and 4 cans of LaCroix, which is also basically water. I find that the water intake is really important – I feel better and always have better results in terms of weight loss when I shoot for a gallon a day.
According to MyFitnessPal, this is how my day looks:
As you can see in the second photo, I’m going to bed tonight with a 762 calorie deficit, which is probably a bit too much now that I’m no longer looking to lose weight. Because I ran today, plus I walked over 11,000 steps, I burned 507 calories in activity and only consumed 955 calories. What is crazy though, is I never for one second today, felt hungry, deprived, or like I wanted to eat anything that I couldn’t have. So now I am in the position of needing to look to add healthy calories to my diet in order to meet my body’s needs to support my activity level. Pretty cool. Because being on Optavia over the past two months has had such an impact on my eating habits, I’m really not all that interested in eating all of the garbage that was sabatoging my efforts to lose weight in the past. Now I get to really consciously think about how I can best add foods to my daily intake that I enjoy and that are also high in nutritional value so I can maintain what I’ve achieved, and stay healthy while I train to run the best marathon of my life. Sounds pretty awesome to me!!
So that’s it for now! If you’re reading this, and are interested in finding out more about the Optavia program, you can send an email to my wonderful husband, who is a health coach for the program: firstname.lastname@example.org – he can give you all the info you need, and I’ll always be available to share my experiences and help out in any way I can. I can honestly say at this point, being on the other side of 22 pounds down is worth it’s weight in gold! It has made my life better in a million ways. So if you’re thinking about it, just go for it – give it a try. And I’m saying that for one reason and one reason only: this program works.
Have a great night!!