Saturday, February 13, 2010

Tips and Tricks: Cutting Calories

There's a lot of books and articles out there about how to cut calories, and they range from valid and informational to completely insane. This is a short list of what I've found works for me:

I'm a classic overeater, and since living on my own, it's gotten worse. Trevor doesn't eat leftovers, and I feel like I'm wasting money if we don't eat the entire pot. So, I have two ways to combat this instinct.

Cut recipes in half. Most recipes are written for 4, so before you know it, the pan is empty and even a healthy recipe's calories have doubled.

Dish up leftovers first. If I make my lunch plate for the next day, and get it in the fridge before I even sit down to eat dinner, there won't be any food leftover for tempting seconds.

Another super easy thing to do is to use smaller plates. This works best with my nemesis, carbs. Cereal, rice, pasta, potatoes. All are easily overserved, and then overeaten. I know there are tips to eat almonds, or thing like FullBars before a meal to dissuade hunger, but I find I still eat the same amout of food regardless, ignoring my "full" feeling. It's best to use these mental tricks, personally.

I also frequently confuse boredom and thirst for hunger. This likely stems from afternoons alone after school, and trying to fill voids with food. So, I drink lots of water, in the form of coffee, tea, EmergenC, or Crystal Light. I also try to keep easy snacks like chips, and crackers (more carby goodness) out of the house, and actually make real meals when I think I'm hungry. Work for my food. If it seems like it's going to take too long, I'm not really hungry.

That said, I am a new mom, and sometimes even sauteeing chicken takes too long. So, I'm a big fan of bagged, one pot meals. Birds Eye Garlic Chicken is my favorite. But, again, my financial sense takes over, and I'll make the entire bag for myself, totalling close to 1000 calories for one meal. So, I only make half the bag. Again, then I'm eliminating any temptation to have additional portions, and as long as I wrap the remainder up tight, it's good in the freezer for a couple more days.

Finally, I can't get hungry during the day, or I ignore all these smart tips to avoid over consuming. So, small snacks that are full fiber, filling, and not calorie-dense help me immensely. FiberOne bars, and apples top the list.

Of course, the best trick is to actually make a lifestyle of implementing these, something that is clearly a challenge for me as I continue this lifelong battle over my inner fat kid. But as long as I never feel deprived, it's easy to do.

Also, here's a bonus fashion tidbit: my sister's breakdown of legwear definitions. Since I've been pregant, and actually since my mom opened Napa Valley Pilates, I've been a constant stretchy
-pants offender. I'm sure I'm not the only mommy who needs a reminder of what's socially acceptable.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Nowhere to go but down

If I'm being honest about my weight and body fat, why not my measurements too? At the very least, I won't have to search for a scribbled sticky note to see if I've made any progress.

As of 2/11:

Waist : 38in
Bust : 44in
Arms : 16.5in
Hips : 49in
Legs : 30.5in

I'm not sure what the "exact" measurement spots are, but I've always gone by the widest part. I've felt my clothes become looser, but no weight loss really. I know this is because I'm not doing a ton of fat-melting cardio, but instead getting my sweat on with muscle toning.

There's a couple DVDs that intrigue me, that promise to get my heart rate up and sweat dripping down, all in the comfort of my living room while the baby chatters in her swing. Once I get my refund check, I'm all over it.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Body fat shocker

I forgot to mention that I now know my body fat percentage. Well, within 5 points of it. It's embarrassing, and terribly high:


Isn't that gross? I've always been muscular, and assumed my weight was more muscle mass, but apparently not. What did I expect really? I went to the gym and sweat maybe 15 times since August 08. The last time I ran was the day I found out I was pregnant!

Well, that's changing, and the only place that disgusting number can go is down. The healthy eating has continued, with an exception this evening with more pasta consumed than I should have had. Savory carbs really are my nemesis. Noodles mostly. But, it's been a long day of coddling my constipated and cranky baby, so I'd rather a little more pasta than the beer I was considering.

But I do have some good news! My new jeans are loose on me. I also notice it in my LuLuLemon pants that I've worn 5 out of 7 days during and after my pregnancy. I'm sure Trevor will be happy to see me rid of every pair of black stretchy pants. I'm not making any promises. :)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Mental Health Day

Or, really, my lack of it.

I'm extremely stressed and unhappy today. It's been a long long long 3 weeks, and even though baby and I just spent some time with Trevor in SLC, I'm back in an empty, torn up house, doing it all alone.. We still have until Friday, and as my mom puts it, I'm "in the bell jar."

Today is so much worse, as when Trevor agreed to go out to SLC, it was only supposed to be a couple days. We were supposed to be back and a family again. Baby hasn't slept peacefully in 48hrs, and when she does, its for 30-45min at best. She's gained weight so fast in the last week or so, and it's taking its toll on my back. I got out of bed today wanting to cry my because it hurts so bad.

Luckily, the baby is really the only thing that gets me happy.. Even when she cries (and I want to bawl right along with her) when she does smile at me, or laugh in her sleep, it makes this all worth while.

No matter how much I ask of her, baby will keep nursing even if my tits are empty. No matter how much I want her dad and my man back here, I'm not working at the moment, so a paycheck needs to come home. My physical health is the only thing I really do have control over these days.