Monday, May 19, 2008


Well, I (Stacie) have now exercised 5 out of 7 days this week with my TURBO JAM!!!! I love it more each time I do it. On Wed. I did it twice because it was raining here and so our service project was canceled and we decided it wouldn't hurt our mutual girls to get some exercise so we did it for Young Womens and had a blast.

On Sat we had an early morning and then went out walking around at Mayfest, so I didn't get in a big workout. However, I did sweat because you can't walk outside in OK when it is above 70 with 35 % humidity (which is low) without sweating. But I have noticed a huge difference when I get a good Turbo Jam workout in. Sometimes I will be doing it and not even realize how much I am sweating because I am having a great time doing it. The music is pumping and I am jumping well kind of but each day I increase my workout to be more intense so soon I will be jumping.

I just want to say THANK YOU TURBO JAM!!! I schedule my day around my workout time and even though the scale may not be showing much I feel better every day and so I know it is doing something.

Get off the couch and move, it makes all the difference in the world.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Quaker Rice Cakes [SnackAttack]

I know - this is not so much a snack attack as it is a snack "slide along side and politely ask". Rice cakes are the old stand by of just about every diet that exists. These things are mostly air, but after the weekend we had, I can barely afford the calorie content of air.

So, in an effort to do due diligence to the full range of snacks we give you:

Quaker Rice Cakes - Carmel flavor
Serving Size:
1 cake

This is one of the snacks I remember from my youth. For some reason, we always had these in the house - probably because my mother always was trying to keep us a little healthier - and these made a sweet snack. I find I've been using these in the same way as gum. Sweet treat with a couple of glasses of water and you feel full while taking care of the snack craving as these are not very filling on their own.

The one real advantage of these is the small calorie count - they're crunchy and sweet and cost practically nothing on the calorie count, which for me will be a real lifesaver this week. I guess when you combine mother's day, a birthday, and a sleepover with lots of left-over goodies, it can really impact the waistline.

Toodle-loo, happy Monday and happy healthy!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Back again

I was going to say back in black, but as I start going down on the scale I really am not in black as it is exciting. When I went back to Utah I wasn't very disciplined and I quickly learned how fast you can be right back at the beginning. So now I have realized how much it has to be a lifestyle change.

We came up with a great recipe we want to share with everyone. A little background, growing up I hated Spaghetti and come to find out it was because it always made me sick because at 23 I learned that I was allergic to onions and garlic.....wonder why I was getting sick. Well I met Grant and one of his favorite foods was his moms spaghetti. I said I would try it and since she makes her sauce from scratch he left out the onion and garlic and tada I wasn't sick. So now I crave this delicious Spaghetti, but even more Grant and I love the garlic bread we eat with it (minus the garlic for me {French Bread and Butter}). So we decided on this diet we would eat less noodles so we can eat more bread and we had some asparagus in the fridge and so for our meal we had sauce bread a few noodles and asparagus. Well my asparagus got in the sauce and I loved it, so the next time we made it I just made it into a casserole and it was fabulous. So here is the recipe:

Spaghetti Sauce
(most of this is just an estimate as we really don't measure, just do it to what tastes good to you)
1 12 oz can Hunts Tomato Sauce
1/2 can water (to get any extra sauce left in the can)
2 Tbps Italian Seasoning
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Pepper
Mushrooms (fresh are best but can work too and as much or little as you want or heck even leave them out if you want)
1/4 C Brown Sugar (more if you like it sweeter, less if you don't want it as sweet)
Cook for 15 to 20 min (the longer it cooks the better tasting it is)

Then in a separate pan I cook the asparagus and last night we used elbow macaroni. I liked this better made it more of a casserole. I cut the asparagus about as long as the elbow macaroni. Once the macaroni and asparagus are done I put them in a pan and put the sauce on top. Last night I had to make more sauce to cover the noodles and asparagus. Then we top with Mozzarella grated cheese and let melt in the oven for around 20 min on 375. Add a side of Garlic Bread and you have a very good, quick meal.

Here is a picture:

This is of course with Spaghetti noodles. And a little too much cheese.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Cheddar Jack Cheez-Its [SnackAttack]

Here we go with this week's SnackAttack - sorry it's a little late but we got busy cleaning the house and I forgot to do it.

Cheez-Its Crackers - Cheddar Jack flavor
Serving Size: 35 g
Calories: 180

Cheez-Its have become a really fun snack for us of late. Another great go-to when you've got a salty craving going on. My personal favorite flavor is the new Cheddar Jack - regular flavor doesn't quick have enough kick to it, though we do eat it. This one makes a nice balance to the sweet that I've been getting with my Malt-o-Meal cereal that I mentioned last week.

The only weakness in this snack is the calorie count. They aren't tremendously filling - 35 grams doesn't seem like a whole lot compared to something like the Cheerios mix. And for that small amount of crackers, you sure get a lot of calories. But, if you've got the remainder of the calories to spend, these are a fun snack to eat.

Happy Tuesday and Happy Healthy

PS - The Menu Shout-out for this week will also be delayed a day so tune in again tomorrow for the weekly shout-out.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Serving Size Sweetness

Another simple trick to help you make sure you're only eating a serving size at a time is to measure out, up front, the entire box/package/sack/container into smaller, serving-sized ones. We found that it's much easier to count calories if you keep thing directly related to the serving size listed on the packaging.

Most of our snacks run about 120-140 calories per serving - round those up to an even 150 and the math gets pretty easy (and you build in that little fudge factor that helps make up for stumbles during the day).

When we buy a new box of Cheezits or trail mix, we pull out the digital food scale, a handful of ziplocks and go to work measuring the listed serving size in grams, then plopping that into the ziplock baggie. The nice thing is that since most all of our snacks are dry, it's easy to shake out and reuse the baggies for the next snack mix we buy.

I would guess that a standard sized box of Cheezits takes about 8 minutes to measure out the entire box into the baggies. Then, we load the baggies back into the box (as best we can) and have a simple way to reference what the calories are and a way to store them. A little more work up front, but makes it so much easier to grab-and-go when you need to snack on the run.

Whew! Two tips for the price of one today...course, I'm not charging you so who's counting?

Happy healthy and good night!

Food Budgeting

No, no - not that kind of budgeting. I may be starting to get my finances organized, but I don't expect that everyone likes that kind of torture. Instead, what I'm taking about is how to budget your calories. In addition to the planning of meals and trying to balance calories in and calories out, there's a simple thing that I have found helps me maintain my diet. I decided to call it food budgeting, but food planning works just as well.

Each morning, I or Stacie put together my food for the day while I'm at work. Grab a breakfast, lunch, and snacks, throw them in a plastic grocery bag, quick kiss, and out the door. This means I've already set aside my calories for the work day - I can't eat anything more than what's been packed, unless I go buy something from the cafeteria or the vending machine. Now, as I've made it a habit to carry very little cash (and that's only an emergency reserve) I'm not tempted to eat from either of these sources. So, while I'm at work, I would have to go out of my way to overeat.

The result? I never do.

It works so well for me that we're thinking we might do it for Stacie as well.

So, if you want to food budget, set aside everything that will be eaten during the day and when you find yourself getting peckish, reach for a snack from that bag and not the pantry. Do this and you'll find it a lot easier to know how much you've eaten during the day. Just one other way you might try to attack the cravings that come during the day.

Cheerio, happy healthy and happy Thursday!