>Day 59–Lessons Learned

>There are a bunch of rules I’m slowly figuring out as I make this journey towards defatification (look it up…its not a real word) and better overall health.  Here are the big three so far:

1) Drink water.  Not as in “make sure you get your 8 glasses of water a day” so that you constantly feel like a walking waterbed, but as in “man, water is so much healthier than ANYTHING else.”  Days I drink only agua I feel so much better than days I change it up, even for some juice or a small soda.  That being said, for Lent I officially committed to give up everything but water and donate the savings to help Africa get clean water: www.bloodwatermission.com Check it.

2) In order to lose weight properly, buy a box of plastic spoons–the bigger the better.  This one may seem weird, but bear with me.  Some of the best things you can possibly eat to lose weight: yogurt (spoon), oatmeal (spoon), brothy soups (spoon), high-fiber/low-sugar granola (spoon)…you get the point.  Also, as I’ve started cooking healthier, its IMPERATIVE to try out what you’re making as you’re making it.  Taste as you go and season properly.  Salt, pepper, vinegars, spices, and herbs usually have zero calories and can make anything taste delicious.  In fact, there will be more on that phenomenon later on when discussing dinner.

3) Lots of small meals, not three smaller meals.  Made that mistake today…breakfast, lunch, and dinner were all great, but not overly satisfying because I ramped up my metabolism and then never sated it. Silly metabolism…I’ve missed you.

Breakfast–Cinnamon Swirl oatmeal with dried cherries (spoon).  The more fiber and protein you start the day with, the fuller you feel as you go along. Bueno.

Lunch–Today was pulled pork day, and to be honest…I just couldn’t do it.  The longer this year goes on, the more frustrated I become with our supposedly healthy lunches.  Potato chips, fried vegetable cakes with what appeared to be sour cream sauce all over them, vegetables sauteed/swimming in oil, and then what is advertised as pulled pork but really resembles, well, nothing porcine.  Spring break will be good for my palate, if not my waistline.  Instead of taking the plunge with the sandwiches, I had a salad of lettuce, cucumbers, red and green peppers, and my trusty Thai Chile tuna.  It was good, and I only used four crackers this time to clean it up!  Success.

Dinner–I made stir-fry tonight.  Usually the stir-fry goes one of two ways: mushy and completely overcooked or completely over-sauced.  There has been no in between…until tonight.  I threw my last fresno chile (tear), some ginger, broccoli, snow peas, and a pork chop into the trusty wok and then added some sesame oil, reduced sodium soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and (wait for it…) peach preserves to the concoction at the end for a sauce.  A pinch of cornstarch and BAM–excellent stir-fry over brown rice!  Tasting as I went with the sauce really helped because I knew at the end I needed some sweetness, and the jelly and peaches just dissolved into the overall sauce.  It was a great meal…except I made it so much with previous failures in mind that I didn’t make enough!  Usually the whole thing is so heavy from sauces and other failures that we can’t eat it all.  Tonight? Scraped the wok. Oh well.

Second Dinner/Dessert–I had a piece of whole wheat toast with Justin’s Chocolate Peanut Butter on it. Seriously…if you haven’t found some yet, do it now.  It’s sweet, its chocolatey, its salty, its got protein, some good fats in it…and for a relatively large amount it has the same calories as the store-bought overly processed stuff.  I’m a huge fan.

So tomorrow I’m concentrating on more, smaller meals.  Apparently oatmeal, salad, and vegetables and rice won’t hack it.  Duly noted…maybe that’s rule four?

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