Monday: Menu planning

Ever hear the saying, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions?”  Yeah, well some weeks that about sums up my eating.  No matter how much you plan, unexpected things happen, and the food you PLANNED to cook just sits in the fridge waiting on you, while you are off living your life. Last week was one of those weeks.  Soccer games out of town that ran later than expected, among other things.  So this weeks menu may look very similar to last weeks! 😉

Here’s hoping everyone has a healthy and successful week!

Monday:  Pork Loin, homeade applesauce, roasted veggies

Tuesday: Smoked sausage with fried potatos, onions, corn

Wednesday: Meatloaf, Green Beans, Cauliflower “mac’ and cheese

Thursday: Crab legs, asparagus, Cheddar paleo biscuits

Friday: BBQ pulled pork, salad

Saturday: Chicken Fajita Salad with salsa/sourcream dressing

Sunday: Pan Seared Chicken with Balsamic Cream Sauce, Mushrooms, and Onions, Roased Veggies


Weigh in Saturday!

Today is a BEAUTIFUL day!  I stepped on the scale (as I do most mornings, just to monitor myself.)  And what I saw there made me do the happy dance!  Back in July when the journey first began, I weighed in at my heaviest weight ever,  330 lbs.  In January, when I began this blog, I weighed in at 308.2. This morning…. (drumroll please)…..

I weighed 279.0!  I have lost 28.2 lbs in 11 weeks.  Thats an average of 2.5 lbs per week.  (Now for a smaller person, that wouldn’t be healthy, but at my size its not uncommon.)  And stepping out of the 280’s forever, and into the 270 for a short time is just reason to celebrate!

And I have lost a grand total of 51 lbs since I began this journey!

This morning I will write a little less and just take the time to soak it in, reflect, and bask in the glow!  Happy Saturday to you all!

Weight / Measurements 

Starting                    Current                       (Lost)

Weight                      308.2                         279.0                             28.2

Neck                          17 .5″                         16.5″                           1″

Bust                            51″                              48″                             3″

Waist                         52.5″                            50″                             2.5″

Hip                             60″                               58″                             2″

Thigh                          30″                               29″                             1″

Calf                             21″                            19.5″                            2.5″

Friday Whimsy: Managing time!


Usually when we discuss a healthy lifestyle, we tend to focus on diet and exercise (or rather nutrition and training).  Today I’m going to stray off the beaten path and discuss time management.

As you may have read before, I work several jobs.  I am a nurse/case manager by day (loads of paperwork, lots of sitting), and a sports photographer. For every hour of time spent taking pictures, It generally takes me 2-3 hours of post processing at my computer to get the finished product.  Thats alot of time spent in my office, sitting on my duff.  And once there, it becomes difficulty for me to pull myself away until all of the work is complete. Then there is blogging, facebook, pinterest, lifestyle research, checking emails… and the list goes on.  Boundary setting has  never been a real gift of mine.

For the past week, while recovering from surgery, I have spent very little time on the computer.  It has been refreshing and my sense of well being had improved tremendously.  So I’m thinking I definitely need to make it a healthy habit to limit my computer time.

Now, the time spent on my DAY job activities are not really spent on the computer so much.  But it is SO tempting to take a break from time to time, check facebook, etc.  but I realize that not only is not not REALLY the kind of break I need, it also prolongs my work day even later, much of the time. From hence forth I will allow myself to use the computer for one hour each morning as part of my ‘wake up’ ritual. This means getting up a little earler, but not much, since normally I lay in bed for 30-45 minutes playing puzzle games on my tablet while the kids get ready for school… only one bathroom in the house.  Instead, I will rise out of bed as soon as my eyes open in the morning and get to the productive elements of my day; taking care of any social media, photography and lifestyle business.  When the workday begins, I will remove the computer from my proximity and buckle down.  And I will take BREAKS. Real ones.  I’ll get up from the computer, take a short walk, drink some water, let my eyes focus on anything farther than 2 feet from my face.  I will take a lunch break.  I will not eat while I work. And when possible, I will eat outside, in the sun.

When it is time for me to stop working. I WILL STOP.  The days of, ‘one more’ are over – one more phone call, one more note, one more picture, one more….  I’ve been known to ‘one way’ my way to late into the night.  No more!

Instead, I will rise from my desk, and walk away.  I will get SOME kind of activity.  I will spend time with my children. I will prepare a healthy meal, and make sure I have prepared in advance for the next day so that I’m not tempted to go somewhere and pick something easy (translation: toxic) up because I’ve wasted too much time saying, ‘one more…’

run like a girl

Many evenings are full attending sporting events, and photographing.  I will continue to enjoy that as well, but I will also limit that time.  Not because I don’t enjoy it, but because the more I photograph, the more I am tied to my desk afterwards.  I will no longer spend all evening shooting to come home and spend half the night processing, then oversleeping the next morning.  I will process on nights when I’m not shooting. I will give myself 1 hour on weeknights, and finish up on the weekends.  I will do the meat of my lifestyle research, post preparation for social media groups/pages, and menu planning on weekends as well.  And then I will PLAY! I will step away from the computer and  I will LIVE my life!

What are your lifestyle challenges?

Thursday Food Diary:

Breakfast: 3 scrambled eggs, clementine

Dinner: Paleo chicken and biscuits.

Health/Research Thursday: Beginnings

I’m on day 5 of my quest to make blogging a daily habit!  Happy Thursday, which will from now forward be used for Lifestyle Research… because I have learned that by not continuing to grow and seek new knowledge, I become as stagnant in this lifestyle as I did my old one.

I’ve had friends ask me how I got started.  The truth is, I did quite a bit of reading online first.  Blogs, websites, books… anything I could get my hands on. I knew that cutting grains was key for me.  Not only did I feel much better (more energy, less bloating/fluid retention, fewer headaches, lower blood pressure, no heartburn) but when I allow grains to creep back into my diet, the craving for unhealthy foods come back and completely derail me.  The fact that I go through withdrawl symptoms for the first few days without them told me they were toxic for me.  The more I read, the more it all made sense.  There was one book in particular that sold me on the lifestyle.  That book was The Primal Blueprint 21 Day Total Body Transformation by Mark Sisson.  I purchased the book on my kindle (because my daughter keeps telling me that she feels like she lives in a library and I’m trying to cut down on the clutter!)  I kind of wish I’d bought the hard copy just for easier reference and note taking in the margins.  But I didn’t, so instead I was just keeping a notebook as I read.  The author also has a paleo website/blog,  MarksDailyApple ,  which also has alot of good information.   And THAT is where I got MY start.


The website I use more than any other is a recipe site that combines thousands of paleo recipes from hundreds of paleo blogging sites.  In fact, most of the recipe links you’ll find here were found directly from the site: .  As someone who loves food, I spend a great deal of time there, planning meals and collecting ideas! It can be a bit addicting.  (The site is currently being upgraded and hasn’t had any new recipes in a couple of weeks, but usually there are lots of new recipes each day.  In the mean time, you can use the search features to find all kinds of amazing recipes already on the site to cook or inspire your own creations)

I spend more than the healthy amount of time on the computer, much of that time is spent on facebook.  Yes, I know that sitting around on the computer is not the best way to spend my time.  I’m working on cutting down on that.  But I have also added a group on facebook that keeps healthy recipes, reminders, and educational oportunities popping up on my page:  Low Carb Zen.  As much as I love reading, sometimes its nice to discuss different techniques with others struggling along just as I do, and learn from their trials as well.  Other great facebook  pages are Paleo Newbie  and  Paleo Leap.

I am also going to try and start a cleaning lifestyle group to my REAL life.  Meeting people online who share your passion for clean eating is one thing.  Actually spending time with them, sharing recipes, and exercising together is entirely another!  And I know that the less time I spend on the computer, and the more time I spend living life the more successful I will be.

There are a wealth of good resources out there as the paleo lifestyle continues to grow.  What are your favorite resources?

Wednesday Food Diary:  A bit of an off day.  It was the first day I spent back at the computer working.  Time seems to get away from me when I’m working and I think I sat here for about 8 hours.  By the end, I was exhausted, achy, and exhausted. Then I was shuttling kids to/from activities and church the rest of the evening.  Food was not cooked.  I took the lazy way out and made bad choices.  But todays a new day!  Next step in this lifestyle: limiting computer time.

Breakfast: Banana

Dinner: Braum’s cup of chili, french fries. (please tell me I didn’t really just put that stuff in my mouth!)

“Why I Do It” Wednesday

Wow, I’m really on a roll!  4 days of blogging in a row!   I won’t celebrate too much.  Once I return to work, it will get a bit harder, but I’m hoping that by developing the habit now, I can stick with it later.

I stepped on the scale this morning and was so excited to see that not only have I returned to my pre-surgery weight, I’ve dropped below it.  I know its not Saturday, which is my weight in and measure day, but seeing the number on the scale this morning just made me smile!  I feel like I’m back on track and ready to make great strides.

As I try to get the hang of blogging, I have decided to give each day a special topic.  Wednesdays I will just call “Why I Do It” Wednesdays.  Mid week, when things are the busiest, seemed like the perfect time to reflect and remind myself why it’s worth it!  And reflect on the

This weeks reason is easy.  As I focus on healing after surgery, it reminds me of my need to heal my ENTIRE body, to reclaim my health, my energy, and my sense of well being.  I just wan’t to FEEL good again!  I have wasted so many years saying, “maybe next time.  I’m not feeling very well today.”  or “when I lose a few pounds I will…”

In the past, and part of what got me here was waiting for someone to do thing WITH.  Note to self: NEVER wait to live your life for ANY reason.  I will live every day like it’s my last from here forward.  Ironically, based on past experience, I can deduce that by living like today is my last day, I may actually have MORE days left than if I didn’t.

As for “feeling better”, each day post op gets better.  Yesterday afternoon was a little rough, but because I felt better in the morning, I forgot to take my pain medicine until I was incredibly uncomfortable (probably a hold over from being USED to feeling terrible all the time and just ‘sucking it up’).  But this morning is a new day!  I’m amazed at how quickly I’m recovering from this surgery.  And grateful.  I know recovering the rest of my body will not be quite so fast or easy.  There will be speed bumps, frustrations, and setbacks.  But there will also be new opportunities for learning and growing, tremendous victories, a frequently renewed sense of well being, and a fabulous life to reclaim!  Why do YOU do it?

Tuesday Food Diary:

Brunch: Paleo Cinammon Muffin (leftover from yesterday), and  chicken enchilada casserole Leftover  from Monday)

Dinner: The rest of Mondays leftover casserole.  Broccoli with cheese sauce and baked sweet potato (Leftover from Sunday)