Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Wednesday Not-Quite Weigh In

I am loving the idea of the weekly weigh-in that I see Donor Diva doing. While I am not yet committed to significantly losing weight, I would like to reduce a bit before the big 3-1 next month. So here are my rough stats:
·         Height: 5’5.5”
·         Weight: 145 lbs
·         Desired Weight: 135 lbs
·         BMI: 23.8
·         Desired BMI:  22
So what is a low-activity, slightly crazy, hates to exercise, loves food and sweets girl to do? I have no idea. But here’s what I’ve been up to:
·         Bringing breakfast and lunch to work with me every day.
·         Eating fresh fruits in place of sweets as much as possible.
·         Finish eating dinner by 6:00 pm.
·         No snacking after 8:00 pm.
·         Cutting back on diet soda (max of 1/day).
·         Using whole grains whenever possible.
·         Skipping starch/carbs whenever possible (meaning no bread, potatoes, corn, pasta or rice as a side dish but okay as a main dish, like a grilled cheese sandwich or fried rice).
·         Walking more (it helps that I’ve been moved at work so I walk all the way across the building 6+ times/day).
I’m also going to add sit-ups with R when I get home from work each day and taking my vitamins regularly.
I’ll be honest: I am working on loving my body as it is and accepting that anything below 130 lbs is not a healthy weight for me. I was 123 lbs (meaning I’ve gain over 20 pounds in three years – YIKES!!!) when R and I got married, but that was due to 15 months of unbelievable stress which left me weak and under nourished.
My biggest hurdles are my lack of energy and intense love of cheese/sweets. I will eat well during the day at work, but then go completely overboard on sweets when I get home. MUST! CHANGE! THAT!
The good news is that I cook fairly low-fat at home, with the exception of my baking and the weekly salami with cheese ritual. Our main protein is chicken breast and I try to stuff as many veggies onto the plate as possible. I have also already trained myself to eat small portions, serving myself 1/3 as much as I do R and SSA.
I do cook with olive oil and butter, believing that these whole fats are less artificial (and therefore more beneficial) than no-fat sprays or margarine. Plus I use real eggs. And I use whole fat cheese on my platters and grilled cheese sammies. Hey – the flavor these fats bring to the table far outweigh their other downsides! So, there you go.
For the sharing of a healthy recipe, I give you dspense’s Low-Carb, Low-Fat Green Chicken Soup. Enjoy!
Special Items: A Whole Chicken, Fresh or Thawed, and self-butchered.
Begin by removing the wings and legs/thighs at the joint, placing them in the stock pot. Then remove the breasts from the ribcage. Discard the skin from the breasts and then cover them, placing them in the fridge until you are ready to make your soup. Place the rest of the carcass in the stock pot. It is up to you whether or not to put the giblets, neck, or skin in the pot. (I usually throw them away…)
Homemade Stock
·         Chicken Carcass with Legs, Thighs, and Wings
·         Onion, quartered
·         Head of Garlic, halved lengthwise
·         2-3 Ribs of Celery
·         1 Parsnip, roughly broken
·         2 Carrots, roughly broken
·         1 Leek, Green Portion
·         Bell Pepper, roughly chopped
·         Turnip, quartered (optional)
·         Handful of Whole Peppercorns
·         Herbs/Spices as desired (orange zest, red pepper flakes, thyme, bay leaves, etc.)
Cover all with water and simmer six to eight hours, adding water as needed to keep everything submerged. Strain and return to pot if using immediately or into a container to refrigerate. If refrigerated, use within one week. Can be frozen for up to three months. Be sure to bring it back to a boil before consuming!
*Note: BecomingBrina roasts her veggies first. Give it a try!
Green Soup
·         Two Whole Chicken Breasts, butchered from the Whole Chicken
·         2-3 Ribs of Celery, chopped
·         1 Leek, White Portion, chopped
·         1 Onion, Chopped
·         1 Zucchini, Chopped
·         1-2 Cups Fresh or Frozen Cauliflower
·         1 Cup Fresh or Frozen Peas (not canned)
·         2 Chicken Bullion Cubes, Optional (in case you find your stock lacking in chickeny flavor)
·         Herbs/Spices as desired (orange zest, cayenne pepper, dried thyme, garlic, etc.)
·         Salt and Pepper, to taste
Bring all ingredients to a boil in your prepared stock, then reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes. Remove chicken breasts to a cutting board to cut/shred, then return to the pot for 5 minutes. Serve as-is for a low-carb meal or serve over egg noodles (let sit for 5 minutes for noodles to soften) for those in your home who are not low-carb.
This is wonderful with a cup of dried barley thrown in during the last 20 minutes! I’ve also put in fresh parsnip and carrots when I’m not on low-carb: delicious.
Thoughts: The stock can be done in the crock pot. Put it all in your slow cooker that morning and strain it into a pot when you get home. It will still require the 30 minutes for the soup but it’s a great time saver for a weekday.
I use Stock Day as an excuse to use up my spare veggies. As produce and herbs pass their prime and remain unused, I roughly break them apart, bag ‘em, and retire them to my freezer. These veggies can be pulled out and thrown into stock still frozen. This makes my stock a little different every time and ensures that old veggies aren’t wasted. I do, however, use the fresh stuff in the soup!
I hope you give it a try!

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