Lazy Sunday

After an insane week, lazy Sunday was the perfect follow up to lazy Saturday.  Yep, there was a 90% chance that today was gonna be a Netflix and chill type of day and indeed it was.  That’s not to say I wasn’t productive.  I caught up on all the laundry after Goalielocks finished scorekeeping at the rink this morning.  I even meal prepped for the week.  Meanwhile Goalielocks fished and the Mayor watched Netflix from the comfort of my yoga silk.

As I continue to on the Graves/thyroid rollercoaster, meal prepping has become increasingly important in my attempts to stay healthy.  I say healthy because while I see no change on the outside, I’d like to think under the layers I’m getting both stronger and healthier.  We’ll see what Dr. G has to say when I see her on Tuesday.  I’m sure she’ll be none to thrilled that I didn’t just complete the corporate run, but two other 5ks as well, but more on that later.

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For my meal prep, I look for something easy, high protein and relatively quick to put together.  This week I made five containers of chicken stir fry and brown rice.  For my fasting days, I’m currently doing the 5:2 intermittent fasting plan, I did not include brown rice.  For simplicity and time’s sake, I used Target’s Simply Balanced organic steamed in the bag stir fry vegetables.   Tyson’s thin sliced chicken strips, non-gmo and antibiotic free, were the perfect protein for the stir fry.

I started my meal prep, by firing up my Instantpot to make brown rice.  Fortunately, the Instantpot has proven to be a real time saver for cooking rice.   If you’re not a fan of brown rice, you could definitely substitute white rice.  Each weekend, I’ll cook up an entire bag of brown rice, which I’ll use for my weekly meals.  In addition, I have enough rice to package up three portions of rice that can be used for family meals.  This is where my Foodsaver plus is truly clutch.  I cook the rice in a 1:1 ratio rice to water for 22 minutes on high pressure followed by 10 minutes natural venting.  Lastly, I turn the knob and release all of the pressure.

Meanwhile on the stove, I’ve already browned my chicken.   The vegetables, which were steamed in the microwave were then stirred into the pan with the left over oil from the chicken.  Once I’ve cut up the chicken, I add it back to the pan with the veggies and teriyaki sauce.  In the span  of less than an hour, I’ve made my lunches for the entire week.  Additionally, thanks to my beautiful egg cooker, my breakfast for the week was done even before the rice had finished cooking.

The key to maintaining healthy habits is ensuring it’s simple, easy and can fit into your lifestyle.  If it takes too much time or is too cumbersome, it won’t stick.   My Instantpot, Foodsaver and egg cooker have been complete life savers.  These three handy appliances have been life altering.    I can now plan ahead and meal prep my lunches as well as family dinners.  We don’t time during hockey season to make family dinners.   Fortunately, being able to prep on a rare free weekend gives us the help we need to eat healthy during the crazy hockey season.

This evening I was able to sneak in a 30 minute run on the elliptical as the roast cooked in the oven.  My ankles have been a bit sore since the last 5k, so I’ve taken it easy on them this week by sticking to the elliptical instead of the road or treadmill.  Tomorrow will be leg day – oh joy!

P.S.  Tonight’s drama was our duck’s escape from its cage.  Yeah, there’s a whole series of posts coming your way on our duck drama.  I assure you it will be worth the wait.

Products used for today’s Meal prep:

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Finding Balance

We all have an Achilles heel that can trip us up as we pursue our fitness and health goals.  Sometimes, it is only a minor slip up that causes our healthy habits to start to taper off.  If you’re like me, a cheat meal can easily converts into a cheat week.

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So how do we stay the course without driving ourselves nutty?

  • Allow yourself latitude to miss a workout or eat a treat. It’s okay to not be perfect.
  • Don’t cut out whole food groups completely. Ditching carbs is certainly effective, but not practical long term.
  • Don’t give up everything you like. I can give up almost everything, but don’t make me give up or change my coffee!
  • Have a battle buddy.  Together you can keep each other on track and disciplined.
  • Sign up for a race or event, so you have a milestone to work towards.
  • Practice yoga, it will reduce stress (and stress hormones) and help you avoid injury by keeping you flexible.

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These are just a few tips you can use to taper off your unhealthy habits and convert them into healthy habits and on your way to a healthier lifestyle.

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Infuse a Little Pineapple and Cut a Couple Calories

If you’re like me and you like the occasional cocktail or are a hockey mom and need a low calorie go to drink for hockey season.  Here are a couple of ideas for you:

Vodka pineapple vs. Pineapple infused vodka

A vodka with pineapple juice will give you 182 calories with 28 gram of carbs.  As a lighter alternative, you can substitute the pineapple juice for a pineapple infused vodka as a martini or on the rocks with or without soda water.     This substitute is only 70 calories with 18 gram of carbs.

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You can purchase the infused vodka as a flavor or you can infuse your own vodka.  Since we live in Florida and grow pineapples in our backyard, we can make our own pineapple infused vodka.   To do this you can use a 750 ml bottle of the vodka of your choice.  I prefer Grey Goose, Ketel, Tito’s or Ciroc depending on what I’m using it for.  Keep in mind, the smoother the vodka, the better the infusion will taste.

The pineapple will need to be cut up into chucks and placed into a carafe big enough to hold all of the pineapple and the vodka.   Once the pineapple is in the carafe, pour in the vodka and let it sit in the fridge for 3-6 weeks.  The longer is sits in the fridge, the stronger the infusion.  Once the infusion period has ended, strain and serve cold.

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Vodka mixed drinks vs. vodka sodas

The problem with mixed drinks, aside from their awesome taste, is that they’re often calorie and sugar laden.  It does us no favors the morning after and does no favors to our waistline.  Hockey season lasts from August to well June here in Florida, so drinking that many calories is not conducive to maintaining a healthy weight or lifestyle.  Here are some examples:

Vodka with diet cranberry calories: 108 calories

Vodka cranberry calories: 182-210 depending on type of vodka and juice

Vodka with orange juice 193 calories

Fuzzy Navel: 253 calories

Here are some suggestions:

The hockey mom fit cocktail: 65 calories 16.3 carbs.

Pour one can of Peach/Pear LaCroix over ice, add one ounce of Peach Ciroc mix and garnish with slice of lime.

Other variations:

Cran-raspberry LaCroix served with Berry Ciroc or Goose/Ketel or Tito’s.

Orange LaCroix served with Peach Ciroc

Perrier served with Grey Goose and a slice of lime

Calories per 1 ounce of vodka used:

Ciroc: 65

Grey Goose: 69

Ketel One: 69

Tito’s: 60

Of course over indulging in vodka (as with anything else) with or without a mixer will pretty much derail any attempt to: live a fit life, maintain a healthy weight and  maintain healthy relationships, so enjoy in moderation.

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