Posts Tagged ‘ground turkey’

This past week I reunited with some friends I haven’t seen for a while. After spending some time with them, I’m noticing that I feel better about myself both physically and mentally.

First, my tracker. (Pardon the icky food stains on the cover. I keep it in my kitchen drawer and often journal while I’m cooking or just after I’ve eaten.)

One beautiful thing about working for Weight Watchers it that I get to listen to 3 meetings per week while I’m on the clock as a receptionist. Last week the topic was tracking. For about a month now, I’ve been doing the whole “I’m tracking in my head” thing. If you’ve ever been a Weight Watcher, you probably know what I mean. I’ve been keeping track of the PointsPlus values I eat and what I have left in my head, but not putting anything down on paper. The message I heard at the meetings really hit home and I felt like a fraud knowing that I was slacking on something we stress as being so important to our members. That’s when I decided to recommit to tracking 100%. I went home, turned to a fresh week in my journal and started immediately by filling out the weekly goals/challenges plan and writing out my exercise plan.

All week, I wrote down every. single. thing. I didn’t guess on any PointsPlus values. I looked everything up unless it was a food I eat regularly and was 100% sure of the PPV. And guess what? It was actually fun! Maybe that’s my Type A showing, but I enjoyed going back to the basics and looking at my eating in such a logical way. I also found myself measuring out more of my portions instead of eyeballing them and working hard to get in my Good Health Guidelines so that I could check off those little boxes.  I definitely noticed myself eating less BLTs (bites, licks & tastes) and made better choices overall because of the accountability. Does it take extra time? Yes, but not much. Is it worth it? Heck yes!

The gym was the other “friend” I reunited with this week. 

We only pay for our gym membership from November-April each year. The rest of the time my husband is too busy at work (sometimes 80-90 hour weeks) to really utilize the facilities and I can run, walk or bike outside and do DVDs at home.  This year, I really slacked about getting signed back up and it was almost January when I reenrolled. The owners gave us the last two weeks of December for free, but I was too caught up in the holidays to take advantage of that bonus. My loss, for sure. This past week I got my behind in gear when I realized we were paying for something that wasn’t being used.  It felt so good to be back.

As you can see, the gym is really small. I’ve actually seen hotel fitness centers that were bigger and had more equipment. Plus, it only costs $25/month for both of us and it’s about a 2 minute drive. We’d have to drive about 30-40 minutes to get to the closest, more standard gym and those start at about three times the expense. It may not be fancy, but they really do have everything we need.

There’s only one elliptical (in the middle of the last picture) and it has a mind of its own. You can set your resistance and crossramp, but it chooses to adjust itself at random times during your workout, even when it’s on the manual setting. Sometimes pushing the buttons brings it back where you want it. Sometimes it doesn’t. Today was a “doesn’t” day. I ended up with much more resistance than I wanted for much of the workout. I still cranked out about 45 minutes. The owners bought three new treadmills with TVs last year and had cable hooked up. They told me at least one new elliptical is next on their list of upgrades.

The beautiful thing about such a small gym is that I’m usually the only one there, espcially when I go in the middle of the day. Thank goodness this was the case yesterday. Here’s me (pardon the not-sure-what-I-was-thinking expression) after 45 minutes on the posessed elliptical:

Do not adjust your monitor. Those yoga pants are, in fact, electric blue. They didn’t look that blue on the Victoria’s Secret website when I put them in my cart. I almost returned them, but they’re super comfortable and were only $6 so it’s worth sacrificing my pride. I feel like an 80’s aerobics instructor when I wear them. Has anyone seen my leg warmers?

Dinner was another old favorite. Spicy Turkey Meatloaf with Ketchup Topping and roasted potatoes.

I’ve made this recipe a couple of times before, but this was by far my best execution. The ground turkey came packaged as 1.2 pounds instead of the 1.5 pounds the recipe called for. I used just one package and the only change I made was to eliminate the chicken broth. It was still very moist and actually stayed together even better than my previous attempts.

What do you like about your gym? What would you like to see improved or added?

Don’t forget! My giveaway for the Dr. Weil audiobook ends tomorrow at midnight EST.

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Black & Blue


Don’t adjust your computer screen. You are seeing those colors correctly. This morning I was trying to get socks out of the dresser without turning on the light because my husband was still sleeping. Obviously that was a bad idea. I ended up with BLUE trouser socks to go with my BLACK shoes. I didn’t notice until I had been at work for probably two hours. So embarrassing. Oh well. What can you do?

Not sure what it is in the office today, but everyone is wearing their crankypants. I’ve just been keeping to myself. Thank goodness it’s Friday and everyone has to weekend to get over. Oats with banana and coconut first thing in the morning make everything seem not so bad. Tazo Awake tea helps, too. 🙂


Lunch was my last portion of the taco soup with ground turkey & quinoa. I’m kind of sad to see it go. It’s definitely one I’ll be making again soon. Perfect for cooking ahead and then packing all week for lunch.

Now I’m on my lunch hour and just hanging out at the coffee shop. It’s the perfect time for two of my favorite things: coffee & blog reading! I’ll be back tonight with my afternoon & evening eats. Hope you’re all enjoying your Friday!

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It was a pretty ‘meh’ day. Nothing bad happened. Nothing exciting either. Well, that is until I got home from work. More about that later. More oats for breakfast today! I topped them with blueberries & unsweetened coconut just like yesterday, but I actually had my camera today. That calls for two pictures! My tea of the morning was Tazo Awake. Typical.


That was followed by a productive morning of work. I’m halfway through a tedious special project. Won’t be sad when this one is finished. No picture of lunch because it’s identical to yesterday. Still eating the Easy Turkey Taco Quinoa Stew. Still not tired of it. It’s made me super excited to try new recipes from GreenLiteBites.

Around 4 I indulged in one of my new obsessions discovered thanks to you bloggies, Fage. I stirred in some peanut butter almond granola and man was it good! No salmonella worries for me. This granola is homemade at the Amish store using peanut butter they also make in-house. It added just the right amount of crunch and sweet to my yogurt. I think the tea is Tazo China Green Tips though I’m not completely sure. I’d probably had about 6 cups throughout the afternoon (all different) in an attempt to combat the freezing office temperature.

That held me through the rest of the afternoon and my commute. When I got home there was a box waiting for me on the front porch. I love, love, love getting mail and packages are like the granddaddy of all mail. I brought it inside and tore into it like a kid on Christmas morning.

Back in November I won a contest from one of my favorite sites, BellaSugar. My husband and I were flown to San Francisco and put up in the amazingly glorious W hotel for 3 days & 2 nights. As if that weren’t enough, I was treated to a relaxing trip to Bliss spa, lunch in The Rotunda at Neiman Marcus restaurant with the editors of the site and a hair consultation, cut & color at The Red Chair Salon. The highlight of the day for me was a Bare Escentuals makeover done by one of their National Makeup Artists. I started wearing Bare Escentuals about 3 years ago and have been faithful to the brand since then. It’s the only thing I can use that doesn’t make my face erupt into a minefield. They have so many great products and the quality is phenomenal.

As if the whole trip and day of pampering weren’t enough, Bare Escentuals sent me every product that they used during my makeup and a few extras. Remember by lipgloss mishap? I got two new tubes! They’re not the same color as the one I lost, but these are soon-to-be released colors and equally as fabulous. Guess what I’ll be playing with all weekend? Here’s a picture of the goods:

After all that excitement it was off to the gym with my husband and sister-in-law. She and I decided to try Tina’s 45-minute treadmill workout. I was still a bit tender from lower body work on Wednesday and sister-in-law was feeling the P90X workout she’d done earlier in the day so we decided to try the walking version. Well, 4.5 MPH for this girl is a jog so I did some running in there, too. Sister-in-law is 5’8″ so she was able to stay at a walk the whole time. It was great! We were both working hard and very sweaty by the end. I burned 447 calories.

My husband wasn’t hungry when we got home so I just threw together a quick dinner for myself. It consisted of a chopped-up Gardenburger Portabella veggie burger, freshly shredded mozzarella cheese, a few croutons, and a tomato cut into four wedges. All this was served over a bed of romaine and green leaf lettuce tossed with a little Annie’s Goddess dressing.

It was the perfect post-gym late dinner. I was so tired that I could barely keep my eyes open through the last bite so as soon as I was finished eating it was off to bed.

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The title of this post sums up my feelings on today’s inauguration. President Barack Obama. It has a nice ring, doesn’t it?

I wasn’t able to watch on TV, but I did manage to get my radio tuned in to the coverage. I was deeply moved and filled with an amazing sense of hope. There were many quotes that immediately hit home with me. Here’s my favorite:

“The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works.”

Okay. Back to food. 🙂

I totally restructured my routine today. I am hypoglycemic and have a lot of trouble keeping my blood sugar stable throughout the day. I get weak, shaky, nauseous and have passed out on more than one occasion.

The best fix I’ve found to remedy the problem is to eat a “mini-meal” about every 2 hours while I’m at work. Since I eat so often, I tend to stick with low-cal options and/or very small portions. I never really feel satisfied which leads to getting hungry in between “mini meals.” These are the times when I find myself gravitating toward the unhealthy snacks in the work kitchen like cookies, chips & candy.

Today I decided to try eating less often, but eating foods that pack more of a punch. I’m very happy to report that the experiment was a huge success!

I’m backtracking a bit to my last post, but this is what I ate today at work:

  • 8:00AM: 1/2 cup steel cut oats w/ 2 Tablespoons unsweetened coconut, 1/2 cup blueberries & 1 stick organic agave nectar
  • 12:30PM: 1 serving of Quick Quinoa Turkey Taco Stew from GreenLiteBites.
  • 3:30PM: 1 container Fage greek yogurt with 1 stick organic agave nectar & 1/4 cup Amish peanut butter almond granola

The only things I had between those times were plain water and unsweetened hot tea. Overall I took in less calories than an average day because I never felt hungry and didn’t graze between meals. Normally I’m starving after my hour commute and have to have a snack as soon as I walk in the door. Not today. It was almost 8:00PM when we sat down to eat dinner and I was just starting to get a little hungry.

For dinner I made Creamy Pasta Primavera from KraftFoods. I tweaked the recipe quite a bit. I used broccoli instead of asparagus because it was on sale. I added red pepper flakes to the chicken & veggies because we like a little heat. I also used whole wheat pasta and light cream cheese. I didn’t think it was an A+ recipe, but my husband loved it.

Several of my food and product choices today were made based on things I’ve seen and read since discovering the food blog community. You’re all so amazing, inspiring, fun, kind and extremely welcoming. THANK YOU ALL! (((((virtual hugs)))))

Speaking of great bloggies, Angela over at Oh She Glows is having a fabulous giveaway. Up for grabs are some yummy-looking products from Neal Brothers (for Canadian readers) or Honest Foods Country Squares (for US readers). Check it out!

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It seems like my days off are super short. I feel like I just woke up and now it’s almost time for bed. I did have a productive day which makes me feel good.

One of the productive things I did was make this Quick Quiona & Turkey Stew from GreenLiteBites. Holy yumminess! It was really easy to make and tastes amazing. The only modifications I made were that I left out the onion (because I hate it) and used chickpeas instead of pinto beans because it’s what I had. After a couple of bites I divided the whole batch out into individual servings and popped them in the fridge. Ta-da! Lunches for the week are now taken care of.


After that I worked around the house (laundry, dishes, prep for the work week) and watched an episode of Jon & Kate + 8. Love that show! Those kids are just so stinkin’ cute. I know a lot of people say Kate is out of control and I agree that she has her over-the-top moments. All in all though I really admire her because of her planning and scheduling skills.

I wasn’t hungry right after my workout. It just hit me all of a sudden that I was starving! My late afternoon snack was a small glass of organic skim milk and a chocolate VitaTop. My grocery FINALLY started carrying these and I’m ridiculously excited.


My husband called as he was leaving work and I popped the pork chops and baked potatoes in the oven. The timer went off at almost the exact moment he walked in the door. How’s THAT for timing? 🙂

I wasn’t really in a meat and potatoes mood so I fixed myself an alternative. I had a salad of romaine lettuce, black olives, whole wheat croutons and a little drizzle of Annie’s Goddess dressing.


I also sliced up a tomato and topped it with cottage cheese and freshly ground black pepper.


After dinner I just relaxed and read my book for a while, dreading going back to work tomorrow. Oh well. Just gotta do it. I am excited to try new oat concoctions starting tomorrow. Stay tuned for the results!

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