Monday, December 12, 2011

Weekend eats

If you are friends with me on facebook you have figured out the blonde puppy was my youngest nephews Christmas present. His reaction was priceless and he is still so excited. He feels like he is in a dream. Did you ever feel like that about a present when you were little? I remember absolutely loving my little miss makeup when I was five. That was the Christmas my sister and I decided to get up at 3am and start opening presents. I am pretty sure my parents sent us back to bed, little miss makeups in hand.

Last night was family dinner night at my sisters again. The boys dined on mega burgers, made by my brother-in-law Larry, while the girls stuck to a lighter dish that I brought over.

Yes that is egg on top of a burger. 

Yes that burger is wrapped in bacon.

Edemame, rice noodle, peanut stir fry

Edamame peanut stir fry

1 package rice noodles
1/2 crown of broccoli cut into small pieces
1 orange pepper chopped
1/2 red onion chopped
1/2 cup of edamame
handful of spinach chopped
1 Tbs EVOO (Extra virgin olive oil)
2 cloves of garlic

1/2 cup light coconut milk
1/4 cup light peanut butter
3 Tbs sodium reduced soysauce
1 clove garlic minced
2 tsp ginger minced
1Tbs lime juice
1 packet stevia

Cook rice noodles as per package instructions. In a food processor add coconut milk, peanut butter and all other ingredients for the sauce. Blend on medium until smooth. In a wok heat olive oil on medium. Add garlic and onions until soft 3-5 minutes. Add edamame, pepper and spinach. Saute until soft. Add noodles to the wok and pour sauce over the entire dish. Cook for an additional 5 min on low medium until noodles are soft. Serve and enjoy!
Lightly adapted from: here

See you all tomorrow for my post to the question am I a vegan? Which I surprisingly get asked a lot.  Whoops I think I just gave away the answer. 

Friday, December 9, 2011


The week is over and I get to spend the weekend with my husband! My weekend will consist of all things Christmas: Christmas shopping, Christmas movies, and a Christmas party. My week consisted of the following...
Puppies! The blonde puppy is not mine.. more info tomorrow.
Nails!: Got a couple of new polishes from the OPI Muppet collection.
Soy Egg Nog: My sister found this. I had it in my coffee all week long. Thanks Jac! 
Juice:  Andrew is enjoying his juice more this week as I am keeping the kale far from his cup.
Guess who's is who's.
Hot Yoga: I hadn't been in 4 months and was hoping it wouldn't feel too hot after such a long time away. It actually wasn't too bad.

For those who don't know what hot yoga is it basically it is what it sounds like, yoga in a hot room.  95-100 degrees F to be exact. It is good but it is a time commitment. Each class is 90 minutes long. It is also expensive. Fortunately I got passes last year during a sale. 

Why do I like hot yoga. 
1.) My body likes it. I feel good after.
2.) It is a time where you can forget your day and just focus on you.
3.) You do it as part of a community.
4.) The diversity of people in each class is amazing!

What is questionable about hot yoga.
1.) There is little research into everything that hot yoga promises. Detoxing, immune boosting. Although there is a chance it may do these things I am not sure whether there is evidence that it goes above and beyond other types of exercise.
2.) You sweat! I sweat from places I didn't even know I could sweat from. When I take off my yoga clothes they feel like I went swimming in them. Yuk!
3.) I swear I am the last person in the class to break a sweat. I go completely beat red. Everyone around me is dripping and my body refuses to get rid of the heat. Finally at about the 40 minute mark beads of sweat start appearing on my head. ahhh. I am hoping this will change as I go more.

Although I am a newbie at hot yoga I would like to think i will keep it up. For a great testimonial on the benefits an individual can get from hot yoga read Here.

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Track record blues

Do you ever feel like you are doomed to fail? Have you been on this weight loss journey before and failed?  I say so what! Let this time be different. It is all about attitude, awareness and goals. Here is why I have to believe this is true. Last night my husband and I went for a walk with our puppy Sebastien. We were talking about how we soooooo never thought we would own a dog. We also can't believe how much we love having one. That got me to thinking about past pets. This is when reality hit. I am a crappy pet owner with a REALLY BAD track record. Case in point:

Pet 1: Squirty the cat (it was the runt of the litter and I was 7 when I named it): Hit by a car, leg amputated, ran away 1 week later.
Pet 2: Dusty the hamster: Had for about 1 month without any events. One day I left it outside in one of those plastic running balls. It died from the heat. Oh gosh...
Pet 3: Zack the lizard: Had Zack for about 3 months. One day I came to his aquarium and he was missing. Never found him. I herby formally apologize to the current owners of our old house if you ever came upon a lizard corpse. 
Pet 4: Oscar the bunny: Died from neglect of some sort I am sure. 
Pet 5: Sebastien my puppy. Sebastien I promise this time will be different. I promise to care for you, feed you, walk you, take you to the vet etc. 

Needless to say Andrew and I were almost in tears laughing as we recalled this unfortunate track record. 

You know what they say 5th times a charm... I guess what I am trying to say is why not this time? So what if it is your 20th try. Maybe the 20th time will be a charm. So how can we achieve our fitness goals? Here are a couple of practical tips that might help. 
1.) Write down your goals. Make them specific and attainable. Give yourself proper time to achieve them.
2.) What are your challenges? Why have you failed in the past? For example do you cut your calories by too much and then binge. Most of the time small changes, although producing smaller results, are the ones that last. Do you mindlessly eat? I have heard a really good rule is to only eat when you are sitting. This will stop you from sampling food as you prepare it, adding unwanted calories.
3.) Snack! Snack! Snack! I cannot express how important this is. Snacking during the day keeps your energy up and your metabolism burning.  150-200 calorie snacks consisting of protein and carbs are ideal
4.) Drink! Drink! Drink! Intake fluids constantly. Remember to replace any fluids lost by coffee or alcohol. 

Hopefully these tips help!

Below is a husband approved vegan meal. It has become a family favorite. 

Vegan Enchiladas

You can find the recipe Here

The only changes we made were adding broccoli cut up very very small for some added nutrients and a handful of edamame. Andrew loves these.

Happy festive fitnessing! (Yes I am aware that is not a word)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Motivation Monday

When the weather gets dreary it is hard to stay motivated. The last thing we want to do is go out in the cold to exercise, get in the pool, or go to the gym. We would rather snuggle up with a good movie and a hot cup of cocoa. The thing I love is that the couch and the cocoa are so much more satisfying when the workout is "in the bag" for the day.

How do you stay motivated? For some people a scale really helps. Studies have shown that people who weigh themselves everyday are more likely to reach their goal weight. But then again what happens if the number isn't what you want to see? Can you lose your motivation over that? Some do, I do. So which is it, should you use a scale or not. Honestly I think it is a personal choice.

One of the tricks I have learned is to love my body for what it is. As a teenager and a young adult I used to chase a number on a scale. I always felt like I was too big, not fat, just big. My friends would tell me I was muscular and I would hate it. I hated being 20 lbs heavier than all my girlfriends? I didn't like to wear shorts, or dresses that came above the knee.  My legs were too muscley, not thin enough. More recently I cursed the introduction of the skinny jean. Bahh. Oh yeah and high boots, half of them didn't fit around my freaken calves. I didn't want to be muscular, I wanted to be thin. Slowly and I mean slowly.... like we are talking molasses here people, I have come to embrace the body I have been given. I have my dad's legs. Yes if I do squats everyday for a week I have to go up a pant size, but so what right? I am muscular... that is just the way it is. So for me it is better not to get on a scale.  What is my motivation? I like to feel good and I know that I feel better when I am fit. Period.

So what is our motivation for the day then? Check out this picture. You know how they say muscle weighs more than fat?

So lets keep turning our fat into muscle and trudge forward. Festive fitness challenge 19 more days! 

For a quick little recipe I will share my usual breakfast. A shake. 

Almond milk, protein powder, organic blueberries, almond butter and chia seed. 

Finished product

Blueberry shake
1.5 cups unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup of organic blueberries
1Tbs chia seed (optional)
1 packet stevia (optional)
0.5 Tbs almond butter
1 scoop protein powder

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Serve and enjoy. 

Nutritional Information:
Total Calories: 260
Protein: 11.5g
Fibre: 12.5g 

The thing I love about this breakfast is that it takes two minutes to make, it keeps me full and I can throw it in my portable Starbucks cup and go!


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Quick, healthy, no fry falafel

Today was a dreary rainy day in southern Ontario. Yuk! To top it off our hot water heater broke last night; we couldn't even have a shower to warm up. Thank goodness for sisters! I was so cold on Saturday night I went to my sisters after our dinner party and had a nice HOT shower. Don't worry you don't keep a 10 foot radius around us tomorrow, we got it fixed. 

Along with seeing friends and family this weekend we indulged in a couple of christmas movies. Andrews favourite...

Tonight we went to my sister Jacquie's for dinner. I was in charge of bringing something for her and I to eat while the boys ate some "tasty" looking salmon. Sorry, I try but I just can't make myself like fish. It's funny I have acquired a taste for most things healthy in the past 5 years but fish... I cannot handle you. Well that isn't true I will eat it, however, by the time I get it tasting edible I mine as well eat a chocolate sunday because it has so many condiments on it. So what did the girls have? Some great oven baked falafel.  I ended up taking a couple of recipes and making my own. It turned out great. 

falafel, tzatziki and avocado

No fry falafel

1 can of chickpeas
2 Tbs blackbean flour (Can probably use normal all purpose)
2 cloves of minced garlic
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs olive oil
1/4 red onion finely chopped
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mix chickpeas, flour, oil and lemon juice in a food processor on high until well mixed. Add spices and mix on high for another minute. Shape mixture into 8-10 small patties. Using a basting brush coat both sides of the patties with olive oil. Place in the oven for a total of 20 minutes flipping half way through. 

You can enjoy these on salads as we did or in a pita. Make sure you get some tzatziki. We used PC blue menu. If I had had more time I would have made my own. You know christmas movie afternoons are a commitment. cough cough 

As we are all on the festive fitness challenge we cannot have dessert right now. That didn't stop my nephew Carson.... 

Double peanut butter ice cream, oreos, and milk
Aunty Jenny added some fun toppings
Yum... Jealous... 

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Never to old for dad daughter days...

Today my dad drove me to Toronto for a doctors appointment. Thanks Dad!!!
Below are pictures of a grocery store we stopped at on the way home. AMAZING!!! When I go to places like this it makes living in a small town seem less appealing. Then two minutes later we get caught in traffic and I remember why I love rural Ontario. 
Dad trying out some meats

Salad Bar

Carved honeydew melon... so neat!

Carved normal melon.

Finished the day with a sugar free, soy, green tea late.... yum.