So far so good. I have been true to my challenge and have neither stepped on the scale nor watched television all month. To be honest, the greater of the two challenges has been the scale. I would have never imagined how much I value it’s validation. It isn’t good enough to say I cooked everything I ate in a given week, that I feel better, or that my suits fit better, it all comes back to the scale. While I look forward to checking it out at the end of the month, the goal is to recalibrate my reliance on it to that of a tool, rather than my judge and jury.
I’ve upped the number of workouts this month. According to myfitnespal I’ve burned 8823 calories this month exercising. The total doesn’t reflect days that I took an evening walk, walked to the train station rather than drive, or any of the little efforts that I’ve been making to be a little more active, just my workouts. I wasn’t tracking my eating or exercising consistently prior to April so while this will be a valuable tool moving forward, this month I’m laying a foundation. Moving forward, the goal is to burn 3500 calories (3500 calories = 1 pound) a week exercising. The theory is simple, if I can lose one pound by exercising while continuing to eat more healthily, I’ll be a little closer to building the type of exercise and dietary regimens that are long lasting.
While I try hard not to hate anything, few exercises draw my ire more than meal-tracking. In the past few weeks, I realized that meal-tracking, while tedious, is not the villain, holding myself accountable for what I ate is. So, two weeks ago, when I ate a Whopper, a Quarter Pounder, and Chick Fila Strips, I tracked them. They stuck out as ugly islands in a sea of otherwise healthy choices. As an aside, on each of those days, while I adjusted my eating or working out to come in under my targeted calorie goal, I was way over in fat, carbs, and sodium. The lesson learned was better for me than the food was.
I’m happy to report that I continue to meal prep and that I am back in the kitchen. This time around I am doing a better job of cutting back on food waste by keeping recipes simple and by utilizing the same ingredients over several recipes. Last weeks I made a really my favorite chicken and quinoa stew and I discovered stuffed peppers. I’m pretty sure that stuffed peppers will be a staple for me moving forward as they are versatile, easy to reheat and pack for lunch, they have built in portion control, and they stop those pepper three-packs from going to waste (I’m not ashamed to admit they have turned to liquid in the back of my fridge on more than one occasion). The problem is that I stuffed and seasoned my pepper with many of the same ingredients I used in the stew and the tastes melded together. This week, I decided to reach for a bit more variety. I left the quinoa on the shelf and used brown rice and am getting my protein from eggs, pork, salmon, and chicken. The hummus with raw vegetables will remain a staple snack because it’s a great way to get rid of all the unused raw vegetables left over from the week’s meals. My menu for this week is below.