Sunday, January 29, 2017

Weekly Weigh-in

I've stepped on the scale a couple of times, but still just counting my weekly weigh-ins. I like seeing a steadier drop than all of the ups and downs throughout the week. 1.2 pounds down this week!

I love bulletproof coffee, but have never tried bulletproof tea. It's a bit cool after my morning walk, so think I'll try some with chai, coconut oil, and butter. Mmmm, sounds good!

I only walked 2 days last week, but was back out there this morning for 2 1/2 miles. I have a lot of problems with my hips, but I think missing 5 days made them worse this week. I was definitely walking slower, but got it done!

B: chicken thigh, 1/4 cup blueberries, coffee with HWC
L: stuffed cabbage soup
S: almonds, roast beef
D: Spaghetti squash with bolognase

Jan 1: 209.8
Jan 8: 209
Jan 15: 208
Jan 22: 207
Jan 29: 205.8

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Spatchcock!

I just like to say spatchcock. 

Seriously, though, this morning was the first time I've tried cooking a whole chicken this way - you cut out the backbone and flatten the bird before cooking. It turns out really juicy because the breasts and thighs are more even in the oven. YUM! I didn't have avocado oil, so just used olive oil. And I used dried herbs in lesser amounts because I have no fresh ones. I also used a regular roasting pan because I don't have a cast iron skillet that large. Anyway - REALLY good! 

Since Brooks is working nights now, I often cook our big meal for brunch and just save leftovers for dinners and such.

I am trying, trying, trying to only step on the scale once a week for weigh-ins on Sundays. My weight jumps up and down sometimes 2 or 3 pounds in a single day, and it can be discouraging. When I went back and looked at just my weekly weigh-ins, though, I realized I lost 0.8 pounds the first week of the year, then 1 pound each of the next 3 weeks. That feels much better psychologically! 

I've also done a much better job getting exercise the past few weeks! The mild winter has certainly helped with walking outside. Last week I exercised 5 days out of 7, and so far this week I have walked Sunday and Monday. I have been having pretty persistent hip pain, though. I am hoping the six vials of blood plus the additional nine the doc took yesterday to run a full autoimmune panel might give me some more answers. My first batch of labs last week showed some additional autoimmune markers came up. Ugh, but hope to find answers to some additional symptoms I've been dealing with. 

Greek Spatchcock Chicken
4 cloves garlic, crushed1 lemon, zested and juiced2 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano1/2 tsp chopped fresh thyme1/2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary1 tsp salt2 Tbsp avocado oil, divided4-6-lb whole chicken Prepare the seasoning slurry. Mix crushed garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, chopped oregano, chopped thyme, chopped rosemary, salt and 1 tablespoon of avocado oil.Rub 1 tablespoon of avocado oil over the bottom of a cast-iron or stainless steel skillet (10″ or bigger will fit most chickens).Preheat oven to 425F.Using poultry sheers, cut along the right side of the chicken’s backbone (so you’re cutting through the ribs and not the vertebrae) all the way down the spine. Repeat down the left side to entirely remove the backbone. Turn chicken over (back to breast-side up) and open up to begin to lie flat. You can more thoroughly flatten the chicken by pulling up on one side while pushing down on the other (this breaks the ribs so the chicken will like flat).Place chicken skin-side-up inside prepared skillet. Pat dry with paper towel. Rub seasoning slurry all over skin side of chicken.Roast for 45 minutes. Let rest 5-10 minutes in pan before serving.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

I'm Here

Wow, I have been slacking on my blog lately! Just super busy with work and family responsibilities lately. I haven't had much to say, I guess.

I am doing really well - I seem to have gotten my health-focus groove back. Monday I went to see my hormone specialist doctor. I hadn't seen her in a year and a half, so I was way overdue. She manages my Hashimoto's better than any other doctor I have seen - more of a holistic approach. I donated six vials of blood to check my thyroid, thyroid antibodies, plus all of my hormone levels. Hopefully, labs will come back soon so I can see where I am.

I am very excited that I've walked the past 3 days in a row! I know that doesn't seem like that big a deal, but for months, I have had trouble getting my exercise habit back. Sunday was rainy and gray, so I drove to the community gym to use the treadmill. Then both Monday and Tuesday I walked around the neighborhood. I plan on walking again today, too. My goal is 20 minutes 5 days a week to build back up, but I've walked longer every time. Once I hit that 8 or 10 minute mark, I start to feel really great and could keep walking further.

And foodwise, I'm sticking to paleo-ish right now. Basically still lower carbs, but not as low as Atkins levels. Lots of vegetables, plenty of fat, and meat. Plus, I eat 1 piece of fruit and 1 serving of nuts a day. I'm also eating sweet potato or white potato 3 or 4 days a week. Very limited full fat cheese and cream. I feel so much better with this slightly higher level of carbs and a little more variety.

I'm down about 4 pounds from the start of the year, too, and 8 pounds down from where I was the day after Christmas. Those first several pounds, I'm sure, where bloating and water weight from overindulging during the holidays. Still. I finally feel like I am completely back on track.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

I'm a Marathon Lighter!

Happy 2017! I am spending my morning getting organized - uninstalling unused computer programs, updating my filing cabinet, updating my to do list, and rearranging my office. It feels good to start the year with everything in its place.

I weighed in this morning and realized I am exactly one marathon lighter than I was last January 1 - 26.2 pounds. I am 50.7 pounds lighter than January 1 in 2015 - a total of 55.2 pounds down from my all-time highest. If anything, I am predictable - around 25 pounds lost each of the past two years.

I also noticed that in both years, I showed a small gain during the last couple months of the year. Now is my time to kick it back in high gear. I usually have my best losses the first half of the year.

I had set a goal to get under 200 this year, but didn't quite make it. I'm 9 pounds away from that, but that's OK with me.

I don't set resolutions at the beginning of a new year, but I do spend some time thinking about where I want to be physically, mentally, emotionally. One of my ongoing goals for myself the past few years is to continue working slowly toward becoming a healthier me. 2016 had its share of challenges, pain, and difficulty, but then again, doesn't every year? I also had many blessings and joys in 2016.

This morning, I am feeling optimistic and excited and ready to keep on LIVING. Happiest of new years to my friends!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Wonderful Wednesday

I woke up feeling just plain GOOD today. I have logged and eaten everything I've stuck in my mouth the past 3 days, and stuck to real whole food for the most part. Monday I noticed I was hungry often, but realized I got way too little protein in that first day. I also went over my calories Monday thanks to a lunch out to Fuzzy's Tacos with my kids. Can't go to Fuzzy's without having their chips and queso.

Yesterday was better - I got 91 grams of protein and 20 grams of fiber during the day and was a tad under my calorie goal. And so far today, I'm already at 92 grams of protein and 18 of fiber, and I haven't even logged my dinner yet! I haven't really set specific macro goals for myself this time around - I just know a solid amount of protein and sufficient fiber keeps me satisfied and feeling good. I'm working up toward a minimum of 100 grams of protein a day, but not too worried about exact numbers. I also eat when I'm hungry. My calories may be 1400 on a particularly sedentary day and closer to 2000 or more when I'm extra active.

I've been reading back through my logs and journals and doing what I know works for making me feel good and still be able to lose some poundage along the way. I am DEFINITELY feeling better digestive-wise not on a super low carb plan.

This morning, I headed out at 7 a.m. for a brisk 40 minute walk. I've got to take advantage of our record high temperatures before Winter decides to come back and actually settle in for a few months. We have had THREE super cold days this year - below 20 degrees, but moderate and even quite warm several others.

Anyhow, that's all the time I have today. I need to finish up at work before a 5-day weekend. I'm off Thursday through Monday, woohoo! Nothing specific planned, which is nice. Maybe a hike if we have some good weather? A bit of organizing and cleaning for the New Year, spending a little time with my family. Just easy breezy for several days.


Monday, December 26, 2016

Post Christmas Bravery

I'm putting this out there...Yep, I have stayed off the scale the past few weeks - on purpose. I've gained about 8 pounds in that few weeks. I pretty much ate whatever I wanted, and too much of it during that time. That's OK, though. After all, I am still 51 pounds down (and some change).

But. I've been feeling bloated and yucky and gross, too. Sure, I enjoyed eating some junk, enjoyed a big Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinner, but enough is enough. Off the rails for 2 or 3 weeks is plenty.

I know at least a few of those 8 pounds are bloating from loads of carbs and a handful of sweets, so a few should drop right back off with plenty of water and some clean eating.

I am back to logging and weighing everything as of this morning, and kicking back out any sugar or processed carbohydrates. Mostly lean protein and vegetables, small amounts of fat, 1-2 servings of whole fruit, and 2-3 servings of gluten-free whole grains. Simple. Easy, Delicious. If I have trouble with that, I'll slowly back off on the carb servings. Brooks is doing super low carb, so I'll stick to dinners with separate protein, veggies, and a side grain he can skip.

I'm happy to have the day off today to first do some food planning for the week and a bit later to enjoy a day out with Chloe and Thomas. The 3 of us have some Christmas money to spend, so we will have lunch out and just do some wandering about.

Christmas was really good, but really weird this year. Both Chloe and Brooks had to work both Christmas Eve and Day, so our traditional activities were up in the air for sure. We ended up exchanging our family gifts with just us four on Thursday evening since that's the only night everyone had a few hours free. For Christmas Eve, Chloe was off earlier, so the kids, my niece, and I drove to my parents' house for our traditional family Christmas Eve dinner. Brooks was supposed to try and meet us there, but he didn't get off until after 6 and had to go to bed by 8:30 or 9. I ended up bringing him gifts from my parents and sister as well as a plate of food.

Our Christmas Day is usually family gifts in the morning followed by late morning lounging together - BUT with half my family at work, Thomas and I hung out and watched TV. It felt weird. That, and it was a record 80 DEGREES here on Christmas, so we had windows open and shorts on. It certainly did not feel like Christmas Day. We always have dinner with our best friends, so Thomas and I headed to their house late in the afternoon. Fortunately, Chloe and Brooks made it by 6:30 or so, so we all 8 were able to eat together and exchange gifts. Our families have been the best of friends for almost 10 years now - the kids have grown up together, and we think of them as our chosen family. Here's the goofball bunch of us yesterday:


Brooks gave me a Google Home, which I am VERY excited about! It makes me feel super powerful to use the voice command and ask it questions. AND Chloe gave me a Keurig, which I am equally as excited about. We have been brewing coffee in a quite old basic coffee pot for many years. It still works, but I love being able to brew a single cup as needed. Plus, we have loads of teas and cocoas to use. The whole family is loving it. 

OH! And check this out! I, alas, have minimal crafting and sewing skills. My sister, however, is very gifted. For Christmas, she crocheted these for the kids:


That's Lin-Manuel Miranda (from Hamilton the Musical) for Thomas, Rey from Star Wars for her daughter Rose, and Jamie Benn (a Dallas Stars hockey player) for Chloe. She did all 3 of these in like 2 days of work! I've never gotten any further crocheting than making a really long chain of yarn and then unraveling the chain. Very impressive, and the kids all love them!

Anyhow, I hope everyone had lovely holidays with loved ones. And if you're like me, you are ready to refocus all your energy on mental and physical HEALTH! Lots of people wait until January 1 or 2 to restart on health goals, but my reboot starts right NOW. As we venture towards 2017, my mind and my eyes are definitely back on ME...which of course, we know when Mama focuses on herself, she is way better at taking care of everyone else. Happy Rest of the Year, friends!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Guess What? Rethinking things AGAIN.

Hmm. Guess I need to rethink my eating plan again. Last week I had a checkup with my doctor. I've been having some bouts of tachycardia, frequent insomnia, and waxing and waning energy. I suspected - no, I knew - that my thyroid medication was too high and had been for a while. After 21 years of dealing with Hashimoto's, I can tell when my thyroid meds are off. I realized that I've been on exactly the same dosage of Armour Thyroid for several years. My doc pointed out that after losing 60 pounds, I may not need as much.

Labs came back just as I suspected, with my thyroid meds too high. Of course, my doctor is out of the office all this week, so hopefully she will call in the new prescription soon.

Another thing concerning was my lipid profile. My cholesterol numbers have been very good for a few years. Everything got worse with my labs this time around.

Total cholesterol went from 194 to 216 (goal is 199 or less)
Triglycerides went from 160 to 233 (goal is 149 or less)LDL cholesterol went from 112 to 127 (goal is 99 or less)HDL cholesterol went from 50 to 42 (goal is 51 or higher)


I know they aren't THAT bad, but they've certainly gotten worse. I've eaten primarily low carb/high fat in the six months since my lipid profile was better, so I'm going to ease back into eating more variety - whole foods, but focus on leaner proteins, more produce, and gluten free whole grains. I'm sure the lack of exercise isn't helping either. It's something like 18 degrees outside right now, but we have a warm-up coming tomorrow. Highs in the 50s and 60s through the next week, so I have NO EXCUSE not to get out for some walks.

Weight loss-wise, I am STILL exactly where I was October 1. I'm still happy to have not gained anything these last 3 months of the year, but I'm ready to get back on some type of plan. The simplest is just weighing, measuring, and logging everything I eat. Focus on lean protein and eat lots of vegetables. It's not hard, I just keep starting and stopping my efforts. Still, if I end 2016 without regaining anything I've lost this year, I will be super pleased with myself.

I'm scared of decreasing my thyroid dosage - if it's too low, guess what? I gain weight and feel miserable. Ugh. Autoimmune disease, please die in a fire.

If I don't blog again this week, Merry Christmas, friends!