operation: get hot. hawaii-bound edition. one month to go!

I looked at the calendar and screamed today. Screamed. Like, in the office, an audible ACK! When I realized one month from today I will be jettin to Hawaii!!!

You guys know I am committed, right? A woman of my word? I wouldn’t lie to you, intentionally. So while we are on the subject of intentions… remember how I had vowed to drop 15lbs doing the low carb thing? I forgot to take into account:

1. I don’t like meat.

2. It’s the holidays.

3. Salads don’t keep me warm.

When I hit a plateau with the low-carb thing I gave it up because I cannot stomach more pork roast and green beans for dinner if I’m not seeing results. I am a sissy like that.

So remember my initial 6lb weight loss? I have just sustained that for the past several weeks … and I’m ok with it. I still have 4 more weeks to do the best I can. I didn’t GAIN weight over the holiday season but I don’t know it’s possible to reach my insane goal, either. Considering the deep-fried fat pills around the office the past 2 weeks I’m not even mad at myself. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway, boring update-purpose-only post. Here’s to 30 days of solid effort before a well-deserved vacation!


7 weeks to go …

It’s hard to want to update status when the news isn’t awesome, but I need accountability to succeed in this life. Lots of planning and shunning my favorite foods over the last 2+ weeks has only earned me a 2lb loss. But. This is over Thanksgiving, people. This is going to two Thanksgiving dinners, spending time with out-of-town families, baking, cooking, socializing. It’s depressing because I’ve been hungry for 2 weeks {with the except of Thanksgiving day -OMGAWD. But it’s cool. I’m back on it full-force tomorrow and I am still very much motivated. (:

10 awesome salads

Here’s a list I made up ofย  my 10 favorite, ridiculously good salads for healthy low-carb livin’. Seriously, a diet is NOT a bummer when you’re eating creative, fresh stuff {no Lean Cuisines!}.

1. Spinach + apple + dried cranberries + feta cheese + walnuts & raspberry vinaigrette

2. Lettuce + kalamata olives + cherry tomatoes + cucumber + red onion + feta cheese & balsamic vinaigrette

3. Spinach and arugula + apple + blueberries + mandarin orange slices & a poppy seed dressing, sprinkled with cinnamon

4. Lettuce + grilled chicken or shrimp dusted with chili powder + shredded cheddar + olives + tomatoes & ranch/cilantro/lime juice

5. Lettuce + shrimp + avocado + cucumber & a dressing of olive oil, white vinegar and Dijon mustard

6. Lettuce or cabbage + grilled chicken + mandarin oranges + toasted almonds & sesame seeds & a sesame dressing

7. Iceberg lettuce + crumbled bacon + tomatoes + cucumbers & chunky bleu cheese

8. Lettuce +/-ย  kale + sliced pear + walnuts + Gouda & olive oil/sherry vinaigrette

9. Lettuce + boiled egg + prosciutto + red onion + tomatoes & ranch

10. Cubed watermelon + chopped mint leaves + feta cheese + red onion + kalamata olives & olive oil/lemon juice/salt/pepper

operation: get hot. hawaii-bound edition. week 1 recap.

A week ago I started on my goal to get superhot for Hawaii. I’m basking in some week 1 success, and rewarded myself with a very NON sugar free Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks today because, get this, scale says I am down 6lbs! I’m guessing about 4 of those pounds are water weight, because I don’t feel like my clothes are any looser. When I lost 6lbs on Weight Watchers, I could tell. Ya know? So, I’m trying to be realistic here, be proud of myself but not get too cocky, because week 2 will probably be a little different. I have no delusions that I’ll be losing 6lbs a week and looking like an Olsen twin by week 5.

Here’s what made the week easier {and dare I say…fun}:

  • Planning and being excited about trying new recipes.
  • I haven’t counted a single calorie. I just went to the gym a few times, snacked when I was hungry, but avoided starches and {added} sugar. Since I don’t really eat much meat, I mainly filled up on veggies {salads and soups}, fruit, eggs, nuts, & yogurt. Did gorge myself on turkey burger lettuce wraps a few times though – YUM! When the food is GOOD it’s really not that hard to skip the plate of pasta. Yet.
  • Drank lots of water & tea.
  • Learning to do Bento boxes. It’s so fun! And there are so many blogs about Bento! Here’s my second Bento attempt {spinach quiche, apples, raw veggies, edemame}. Not cute. But delicious! Admittedly all I’m doing is just transporting food in smaller portions for lunch. But that in itself is a great thing!
  • Realizing I haven’t been feeling nauseous after I eat.. the entire week! This is kind of a huge deal.

This week I plan to just keep it up and see how it goes. Might do something a little more exciting with the Bento box.

A quote:

Instead of giving myself reasons why I can’t, I give myself reasons why I can.


beginner bento

I’ve always thought Bento boxes were the cutest thing, and have always wanted to make them. I mean, hell-O! Little equals cute. Rice balls in the shape of Hello Kitty? TINY containers? It’s origami food! Sign me up! Of course, it’s a kid thing, kinda-sorta. And I don’t have a kid to pack a cute lunch for. But they are super awesome for adults anyway. They don’t have to be all for cute factor, like these:


Bah! I die. I am dead. Cute overload.

Anywho. I decided to spring for one and give it a shot. I got the Laptop Lunches box. It’s totally cute {but tiny! whoa!}. Super good quality. I received it today, but I’ve been reading about Bento for a few days. Lots of perks. First, I pack lunches anyway. So this way it’d all be in a nice-neat container in the office fridge.

Second, they are GREEN! No extra packaging. BPA-free and you’re golden. No baggies, no plastic forks {they generally come with real silverware}. I LOVE THIS. Because even though I’m a responsible Earth citizen at home, I am ashamed to say it kind of goes out the window at the office. I still recycle paper and aluminum, but I go through my share of plastic silverware and paper plates and bowls.ย  I feel guilty every time I toss something in my trash can.

Third, I’m on Operation: get hot. Hawaii edition. {I’m sorry I am lame and name everything. If I don’t make it a big production I tell everyone about I will be eating donuts two-fisted within days. It’s true.} This is a great lesson in portion control. Plus it takes planning. Again, that is my secret to success. Lots and lots of planning.

Here was my first attempt. This one’s a bit heavy on the dairy because I didn’t have any pre-cooked chicken or tofu or anything, and I’m trying to avoid flour and starches. We’ve got: salad with cherry tomatoes, Feta cheese, and kalamata olives {balsamic vinegar & olive oil in the littlest container}; carrots and celery; apples and a baby bell Gouda; yogurt with walnuts and flax seed meal.ย  It’s not really super artsy and cute, but I think it’s still really pretty and appetizing.

Maybe the food gives you an idea of how small this is. Like those baby carrots are standard baby carrots and they look HUGE in that tiny container. Same with the walnuts. That apple is a tiny one from our tree. Little.

Can’t wait to try some really FUN Bento meals and share with you. Next week’s menu will definitely include a few of these. Do you Bento?

operation: get hot. hawaii-bound edition.

Husband and I are taking a trip to Hawaii this winter (end of January)! I am soooo excited. It’s only 10 weeks away! Perfect inspiration I need to get looking great.

Wear a bikini in public, and go on a tropical vacation are on my list of 30 things to do before I turn 30! Here we go… Operation: Bikini Body begins tomorrow!

My measurable goal is to lose 15lbs. That is 1.5lbs/week. I’m going to do it (I hope) by cutting out sugars and starches {or keeping them to very minimal, anyway}, loading up on water, and hitting the gym 4 days a week.

I always turned up my nose at the low-carb thing in the past because I’d only heard the extreme version. The kind that doesn’t allow apples, the kind that includes snacks like cream cheese covered pork rinds. Blegh! But I’ve done a little research on how it can be done in a very healthy way without eliminating carbs but cutting way, way back on pasta, rice, potatoes and bread. You know, the good stuff.

I chose the low-carb approach for a couple reasons:

  1. I have been cutting back on them ANYWAY because I’ve pegged them as what’s making me feel sick after I eat.
  2. With junk around the holidays, I’m much more successful at saying NO to all of it rather than try to do it in moderation.
  3. I don’t have to give up cheese. Ha!
  4. It’s doable because I love salads and soups, and it can be done very healthfully without subbing in red meats and processed foods with a little planning. It’s how I eat ANYWAY when I’m not being naughty {which is way too often…}. Just need to plan better.

Because my goals require lots of planning to stay on track, I made myself a little weekly menu & workout planner. I will work one up each Saturday for the week ahead, including meals and workouts, being flexible around my schedule.ย  Like so:

I’ll make my grocery list from this and it will keep me ahead of the game in lots of ways. For example, today I have chicken tortilla soup in the crock pot for a couple meals throughout the week, I’ll know to boil eggs for a chef salad the day before, etc. Dishes that take time are reserved for weekends and nights I won’t be spending as much time in the gym. And I’ll leave Sundays open, as we generally eat dinner at either my parent’s house or my inlaw’s house.

I don’t imagine Week 1 will go perfectly or that this will necessarily be the format for coming weeks. Right now I’m just diving in and getting my body used to life without pasta and back on a regular gym schedule. I’ll track my progress in the last box and keep a total of lbs lost, similar to Weight Watchers, so you can see your overall progress even if one week the scale doesn’t budge. That total lbs lost will still remind me that I’ve made a dent! I plan to also do a before and after bikini shot but that will absolutely NOT end up on the Internet. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Look out for a weekly update on this for the next ten… yikes! Hope I don’t drive you all insane. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I need the blog for the accountability so be patient (and encouraging!) please. And if anyone wants to join my 10 week challenge (whatever it takes to make it fun!) please let me know and I will cheer you along, too!