Alyssa Got Her Groove Back

Heeeey! *Dusts off a few spider webs, then sits down next to you*

How’s it going? I know I’ve been gone for awhile, but I’m back! I’ve been super busy the past few weeks traveling around the country for work, helping kick cancer’s butt with the 3-Day. I’m lucky that I find the work I do immensely fulfilling, and I spent many long weekends hearing and telling people’s stories. Love, love, love it!

Being on the road when you’re in a perpetual state of trying to lose weight can be challenging. In addition to working long hours, there’s the fact that you have a per diem, and sometimes, the only food around you in the area in which you’re traveling is fast food like Popeyes. (And I’m not going to lie – I do find a buttery Popeyes biscuit quite delicious.) While I was in Michigan and Minnesota for work, I tried to just tell myself that I could make an unhealthy decision if there didn’t seem to be any other options, but that I needed to make up for it with exercise. And exercise, I did! My job while out on the road is very active: as I’m documenting people doing the 60-mile walk, I also get a fair amount of walking in. At one point, I walked 11.25 miles in one day! I tried to stay away from too many of the delicious snacky items like potato chips, and tried to nom on fruit whenever possible.

Happily, my efforts weren’t in vain, because when I got back from my last trip, I had an endocrinology appointment to see how everything was going. I hadn’t weighed since a month prior, and I’m happy to report I’m down another six pounds! This is roughly 22 – 25 pounds since the beginning of this year, and while it’s slow progress (sometimes only two pounds lost per month), this is PROGRESS. As I’ve written about before, weight loss is challenging as is, and then add a double dose of PCOS and thryoid crap, and you’ve got a perfect storm for frustration after lots of good effort. However, I’ll take it. I feel like I’m finally in a groove again with weight loss, realizing that if something doesn’t taste worth it, I don’t need to eat it, AND, that if I stick to my PCOS medication regularly, that will help keep me on track. I sometimes avoid it because it makes me nauseous, but I’m starting to see that it’s an important ally for me in the weight loss war.

I’ll be taking some new progress pictures hopefully sometime this week, but when the nurse at the doc’s office told me my weight, I had a sudden burst of victorious glee. I know that I still have a long, long, long way to go, but every day and every choice that I make can help put me just one tiny step closer to the person and place I want to be 🙂

 

Low Carb Spaghetti Squash Carbonara by Jess of Nummy for my Tummy

Hi Friends! Last week, I participated in a Blog Swap, hosted by the lovely AJ of Confessions of a Fat Girl. The point of a blog swap is to put yourself in another blogger’s shoes, by writing a post you may not usually write. I was assigned red lips over at my friend Chris’ blog, What I Run Into, and I assigned my friend Jess, of Nummy for my Tummy, a low-carb recipe. How DELICIOUS does Spaghetti Squash Carbonara sound?! Jess has lost an incredible 175 pounds, and I can’t wait to dig through her site for more amazing recipes (For example? she just posted a sauerkraut recipe I have to try!). Follow Jess on Twitter here, Facebook here, and Instagram here. Enjoy!

The Double Chin Diary Divider

Hi everyone! I’m Jess aka Nummy For My Tummy; I share simple, quick and inexpensive gluten-free meals and sometimes “Paleo”.  Today I’m incredibly honored to guest post for Double Chin Diary.  As someone who has been struggling with weight loss my entire life, I quickly fell in love (yes love) with Alyssa and April’s blog.

I feel like I’ve been dieting my entire life. Even when I say I’m just eating “clean and healthy” the reality is that I’m on a yet another diet. Ugh!

Even after a 175lb+ weight loss I still have a few pounds left and find I’ll always be a work in progress. Feelin’ me? If you’re reading this I’m sure you do 😉

Now, let’s get down to business.

I’ve never been a traditional breakfast kinda gal.  Steak & eggs over sugary donuts any day.  Today I’m sharing one of my favorite breakfasts; Spaghetti Squash Carbonara. You read that right…BREAKFAST.  This is a low carb meal that has just enough protein and fat to carry me through my mornings. Of course this can be eaten any time of day, but when you start changing your idea of what breakfast should be, it will open up a world of options for you.

Spaghetti Squash

INGREDIENTS:

  • · 2 eggs
  • · 1/4 c coconut milk (or milk of choice)
  • · 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
  • · 1/2 tsp. black pepper, ground
  • · 4 c. spaghetti squash, cooked
  • · 3/4 c. sweet onion, diced
  • · 4 strips cooked bacon, diced
  • · 1/4 c. nutritional yeast (or grated parmesan)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk eggs, milk, pepper and garlic salt, set aside
  2. Heat a large skillet and add diced bacon, cooking until almost crisp
  3. Add onion to the bacon and stir until onion is translucent
  4. Spoon mixture into a bowl and set aside, leaving grease
  5. Using the same large skillet, over medium-high heat, add spaghetti squash until heated and coated with the bacon grease
  6. Turn heat off  and slowly add the egg mixture to the squash, constantly tossing
  7. Add the bacon and onion mixture to the coated squash
  8. Stir in nutritional yeast (or parmesan)
  9. MANJA!

NOTE: The “sauce” may start off a bit watery before you stir in the nutritional yeast or parmesan, but once added it will absorb and make it slightly thicker.  Nutritional Yeast can be found and your local Whole Foods or similar market in your area and is used as a gluten-free and vegan cheese alternative.

 

 

What does 1,100 calories look like?

Hi Double Chinners! I have so much I want to tell you about (including exciting revelations in the land of medical tests), but I need to get all my ducks in a row with my treatment plan and such before I fill y’all in. The good news is, I’m not dying and it’s nothing too serious and there MAY be hope in sight. Yay!

One of the things I’ve been wanting to do since starting my doctor’s reduced calorie diet is share what I’m eating. I’m actually supposed to eat 1,000 calories but after after trying 1,000 for two days and feeling stabby, I decided to up it to 1,100. Here’s what I ate today:

Breakfast was a 30g protein drink and 1/4 cup raspberries, 190 calories. Since I’m not a meat lover, I reaaaaally need to keep up on protein to prevent me from eating the stuffing out of my couch. The protein helps keep the hunger at bay and the low-sugar drink is actually pretty tasty.

Breakfast - 190 calories.

Breakfast – 190 calories.

Lunch time is where I try to get a little bit creative. If I don’t have my salty and sweet element, something feels off. So today I had one cup of Trader Joe’s Egg White Salad (50 calories per serving), Mini Pita (70 calories for two), Celery Sticks (15 Calories), a plum (46 calories), and 1/2 of a kiwi (17 calories). That’s a 198- calorie, super-filling lunch. (Oh. And. I was at the grocery store and for some reason, a diet coke with lime sounded amazing. I had 1/2. I’m trying to stay off soda but I figure with such a tight calorie budget, having a 0-calorie ‘splurge’ is no big deal.)

200 calorie lunch

200 calorie lunch

Next up is not a common treat, but a treat nonetheless! My bestie Jason came up for the day and we decided to get some Yogurtland frozen yogurt. I got cheesecake and dutch chocolate frozen yogurt with a dollop of whipped cream, chocolate chunks and cookie dough bits. This treat came in at a whopping 360 calories — whoops! Next time I know to keep it lighter on the toppings, as the yogurt is about 25 calories per ounce.

Splurge - 360 calories

Splurge – 360 calories

Dinner was super delicious and also very low calorie. I put four boneless skinless chicken breasts in the crock pot, let it cook on low for 7 hours, and then I shredded the chicken with a fork. I sauteed bell peppers and onions on a reaaaaally hot cast iron pan with some lime juice to get a nice sear, and then I added a few chunks of avocado and fresh tomato and voila! A delicious, low calorie dinner. The tortillas were 110 per two, 140 for the 4 ounces of chicken, 120 for the avocado and 50 for the bell peppers – a 420 calorie dinner.

420 calories per two.

420 calories per two.

This whole day of eating actually comes in at 1,170 calories, more than my goal, but doing a run today helped me burn 235 calories, making me about at what I should be eating. I haven’t figured out yet if I need to be super precise and only eat 1,100 calories exactly and not factor in exercise, but this amount of food felt “right” to leave me satisfied yet not overstuffed. I feel like this is a good representation of my average eating, but the frozen yogurt is definitely a treat. While it was delicious, it doesn’t fit with my whole goal of eating clean, which eliminates sugar and corn syrup and all that jazz.

So what do you think — if you had to eat this, how would you feel? Happy? Sad? Stuffed? Starved? Let me know and then tell me what you ate today!

Weekly Weigh In

MyFitnessPal – Free Weight Loss Tools

Howdy! Sorry I missed a post yesterday, it’s been a hectic week of tons of writing and deadlines and preparing for my trip to Portland on Thursday! WOOHOO! I’m heading up for a nice little weekend for FitBloggin’, where I’ll do things like attempt Crossfit and meet lots of amazing bloggers. My weigh in this week is pretty anticlimactic – I stayed the same. I’m riding at about eight pounds lost on my home scale, but unfortunately at the doctor’s office, I show a gigantic one pound loss in the past three weeks. SIGH. However, I’ve now started metformin, the insulin resistant drug for my PCOS, and as long as I keep up the fitness and good eating, I will hopefully see that weight start to slide right off! Here I am after an amazing boxing workout with my boxing instructor Shari, and my friend Susannah. I’ve upgraded to using “wraps” in addition to my gloves, and HOLY COW BELLS, does that increase the workout. The wraps protect your knuckles and keep your wrists straight and when I was using them, I could really FEEL the power coming from behind the punch. Yowza!
Screen Shot 2013-06-25 at 8.50.38 PM

One of the main hallmarks of the PCOS diet is staying fairly low-carb and low in sugar. I’m not gonna lie, I’m struggling a little bit with that. Great snacks have helped ease the pain, like last night I took carrots, celery sticks and garlic hummus to my gal pal’s house. That was a satisfying and yummy snack, but I’m missing my bananas and the little Skinny Cow chocolate packets I got as an occasional treat. Anyone have any suggestions for me of snacks that are low in sugar and low carb? I see a trip to the Whole Foods olive bar in my future, but I need to go easy on those because of the salt level.

Chicken Salad for dinner! Yummy and PCOS friendly!

Chicken Salad for dinner! Yummy and PCOS friendly!

So far the Metformin hasn’t been too dicey. I’ve only had one not so great experience and that was after enjoying a delicious pat of butter on my corn on the cob. Unfortunately right after eating I felt the all-too-familiar “UH OH” sensation and the side effect was not pleasant. Now I know that butter, even in a small, limited amount, is a no-no. I guess not everything is better with butter. PCOS certainly isn’t.

It might be placebo affect, but I even feel like I’m more energized from the Metformin, like I somehow have more energy. This of course could be fleeting; maybe it’s excitement about my upcoming trip, or the fact that we’re househunting (EGADS! Watch for a post about that soon!). However, I’m going to enjoy a little more pep in my step while it lasts!

Tomorrow I’ll be back with a post about Beets. Don’t get too excited now… it’s a tutorial on how to make quick pickled beets, because I know you all have so much extra time on your hands, and pickling beets is exactly how you want to spend that time, right? HA! Till next time…

xoxo