Monday, September 22, 2014

This is a No-Frills Post!

Hey, all!

Studying-- for test week, once again-- makes me want to blog. I've been modifying my favorites, incorporating flavors in a healthful way, and sticking with that T25 workout plan. I haven't missed a day yet, and boy can I see and feel a difference in my body. More details on that soon!

Today I give you one of my favorite new things... sesame chicken flavors added to an all-veggie side dish. I just stole some ingredients from another recipe I love and put them on mushrooms, broccoli, and edamame. You could use just about any veggies in this-- it would be fantastic on a pre-cut bag of frozen stir fry veggies, for sure. Use what you have on hand.

Sesame Sauce for Stir Fry Veggies:
  • 1 tsp. Sesame Chili Oil (use regular sesame oil if you don't like it too spicy)
  • 2 Tbsp. Low-Sodium Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Minced Garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. Grated Ginger (I buy it in the pre-grated tube. So, so easy.)
Directions: At medium/high heat, saute the garlic and ginger in the sesame oil, soy sauce, and vinegar, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Add the softer veggies (mushrooms) and cook until warmed through. Then, add the other veggies, reducing the sauce as they cook. Sprinkle in the brown sugar at the very end.

Optional: Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds for extra crunch!

Tonight I paired this with baked fish. In total, it was around 400 Calories. Boom!

Okay, this is pathetic. Somebody PLEASE get me a food photography tutor!

Adios, amigos. This short-and-sweet blog post brought to you by the Brain & Behavior midterm.

"May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ." Romans 15:5-6

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Mac and Cheese and Total Body Circuit....

Well. My brief foray into trying to force myself to eat Brussels sprouts.... is OVER.

But I digress before I've even begun. From the top!

For the last few days, Kev has been hinting that he's craving for my Mac 'N Cheese. He and I both love jalapenos, so I made the 3 Cheese Jalapeno Mac N Cheese from Budget Gourmet Mom. It's got bacon, jalapeno, and lots of cheese... perfect man food. That's probably why I've made it for Kevin over and over! It's also perfect me food-- I love mac 'n cheese-- and this fact made tonight a bit of a challenge. More on that in a bit...

If you're going to make this fabulous pasta, try frying up the bacon, then roasting diced jalapeno in the dregs of the bacon grease. This is a lot easier for me than trying to roast the jalapenos separately! I struggle with getting burned in the kitchen, unfortunately. ;) I always add several extra jalapenos and double the sauce recipe for extra cheesy mac. It's a hit with my man.

Cheese... bacon... spicy... need I say more? Nope, my mouth is full of mac.
Whenever we have macaroni, I pair it with chicken, and tonight I had a personal victory in coming somewhat close to Kevin's mom's legendary chicken fingers! Kraft makes these lovely cheesy chicken mixers, and I just whipped one of them up. Easy-- delightful-- perfect pairing. Here's a photo!
Ch-ch-ch-chicken, baby.
And now, for the Brussels sprouts story. Quite unfortunately, I have reached the end of an era... the trying to be an actual adult era... and the sprouts are to blame. I can't stand the little boogers! I've tried them baked, steamed, fried, and what-have-you, but I never end up liking them. Putting them with bacon or garlic or balsamic and parmesan simply masks the underlying soapy taste. They always end up mushy. You'll hardly ever hear a complaint outta me about vegetables. I love them! This one, however, is less vegetable and more mutant. Yeeeugh. At least they look cool.

The reason for the veggie attempt was to fill my plate with more healthy calories than mac, as I have been doing pretty well with T25! Here's the update you've been looking for:
            During week 1, I did all of the workouts, and only one of them kicked my butt! Total body circuit is a mess (for now). However, I'm excited to report that the others are quite do-able and I even lost some pounds/inches! The stats are below, and I weigh and measure again next Saturday. The hardest part of the plan is finding the time to arrange healthy meals. I spent an entire day last week planning and prepping, and am still (sort of) working with those items each meal. I have been hungry here and there, but I feel a lot stronger and a lot more energetic lately! I can for sure see a difference in my body. Thanks, Shaun T-- I love to yell at you in the mornings!

T25 Week 1 Stats
Weight:  -1 pound
Chest: -1 inch
Waist: -1
Arm: -3 [!!!]
Hips: -1.5
Thighs: -0.5

Total Inches lost: 7 [I can work with that!]

Say tuned for more updates with T25, both spiritually and physically. There might even be progress pics at the halfway point if I get brave enough to share! Adios, amigos.


"For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
    the Lord bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold
    from those whose walk is blameless.

Lord Almighty,
    blessed is the one who trusts in you."
Psalm 84:11-12 

OOPS! Almost forgot! Here are a few of my favorites of our engagement photos. A huge thank you goes out to Mindy at Mindy Rae Photography . She does a beautiful job!


Monday, September 1, 2014

T25--Get it Done, Day 1

Hello friends! I hope you've all had a great Labor Day weekend. As promised, this post will mark the start of a new fitness/spiritual journey for me. In light of our impending wedding, and because I want to bust through a recent (and long-enduring) weight loss plateau, I have started on the T25 fitness plan. And day one is DONE!

See? Crossing this thing off was VERY satisfying.

 I have to say, I wasn't too sure about beginning T25 today, after a weekend of unhealthy eating, long car rides, fun in the sun on the lake, and not working out. Translation? I am tired. However, my motivation is at an all-time high. Like I said in a previous post, it's honoring to God to take care of our bodies, and as a future physician I have got to get mine in tip-top shape! That way, I can tell my patients that I did it, so they can do it too. After smoking, extra weight is one of the most preventable health risks my professors like to talk about. I am going to do all I can to be fit and active-- for me, for Kevin, for our future kids, for my patients, and most of all, for the God who created this amazing energy-factory.

A bit of background on this journey-- I began getting more fit and healthy (again) last January. Isn't it always the way that we fallible humans have to learn lessons a few times? So one of mine is living healthfully. Anyway, through increasing my exercise, decreasing my Calorie intake, and improving the quality of the foods I was eating, I lost 20lbs. in about 2 months. Then... I stayed at that weight. I would fluctuate a few pounds up and down, but haven't had a net loss since. That, my friends, is what we call a plateau, and it's time I shattered it, don't you think!?

So, motivation? Check. We got home from the lake and it was time for the first workout: Cardio. Here are my impressions:
  • Shaun T, you are great. So motivating. Well-researched. 
  • The workout definitely got me huffing and puffing, and sweaty! I did the modified moves about 1/2 the time and still got a great workout in. 
  • 25 minutes goes by fast. This part of the plan is going to be wonderful for my medical-student schedule. Just as the program boasts... I no longer have any excuses. :)
I love it so far! Speed 1.0 is up for tomorrow morning. I'll be doing most of these workouts in the AM to boost my energy for the long days of studying. 

Tonight I spent quite a bit of time prepping food for the week. Shaun T has a great 5-day kickstarter meal plan, as well as a set of recipes to accompany his program. I'll be logging about 1,200 Cal/day-- all really wholesome, healthy foods. To maintain honesty with you blog readers, I need to add that I'll be implementing the Shakeology supplement, just to try it out. I get to taste all the yummy-sounding recipes starting tomorrow!

[Please note, I have no fiscal investment in my posts to date, so this isn't a plug for any of these programs-- just an honest review.]

So on the docket in the morning is weighing in, measuring, and getting on to Speed 1.0. I'm excited to keep you all posted on how it goes. We're starting a new module in the morning, which I'm excited for as well. Plus Kevin and I got some furniture for our apartment this weekend! I'm jealous that he gets to use it all the time until I move in after the wedding.

Wahoo! So cute! And comfy! And FREE!
I have this underlying feeling that God is about to pour out some major lessons on me! Stay tuned and hold onto your hats for all of that, guys. I can't wait to see what He has in store for me. He's so loving, kind, good, wise, faithful and fiercely mighty.

In Him,

“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”-C.S. Lewis, about Aslan the Lion [Which means this is ultimately about Christ!]