Hello There...

Welcome to my blog. I'm a full-time mommy of a 4-year-old & a 0-year-old, part-time waitress and a rookie blogger. Living on a farm with my son, daughter and husband among dogs, chickens, ducks and other various wildlife keeps life interesting and anything but normal!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Relapse and Recovery

April was a rough patch in my healthy living journey. I had a ton of stuff going on and I used my busyness as an excuse to eat whatever I wanted. I started with a "cheat day" to reward myself for all my hard work and planning with some events for church and slowly slipped down the slippery slope of unhealthy living. I consider the last month a relapse and I'm on the road to recovery now!

I tried to evaluate what happened and how I got so far off course. It really came down to convenience and needing to eat on the go. Today marked my new starting point and I used the better part of the day to prep my meals and snacks for the next week as to prevent the temptation to run through a drive thru because I don't have time to make something. It's also much more cost effective! I ran to Woodman's last night and purchased a few things that I needed to assemble my meals and today I went to town prepping. I spent $49 and I got: raw agave nectar, dried cranberries, 60% cacao chocolate chips, 2 pints of blackberries, 2 pints of raspberries, 2 pints of strawberries, almond coffee creamer, rolled oats, 2 heads of romaine lettuce, 5 lbs of broccoli, 1/2 lb of jalapenos, 12 oz of feta cheese, 2 red onions, 4 lbs of brown rice, 1 mango.
When I got home from the store last night I made a jar of pico de gallo - 2 minced jalapenos, 3 diced roma tomatoes, 1/2 minced red onion juice from a small lime and some salt. Mixed it all together and it made the perfect addition to my rice bowl lunch!

This morning I prepped 2 cups of rice, 4 chicken breasts and 2 lbs of broccoli. I also made homemade granola bars. One of my other down falls is breakfast. I often skip it and being the "most important meal of the day" I figured I should probably start eating it. The granola bars are AMAZING, not to mention super easy to make. I'll share in detail what I did, in case you're interested.

Homemade Granola Bars - adapted from the recipe found here.
2 1/2 Cups Rolled Oats (old fashioned oats) - not quick oats
1 Cup Nut Butter (I used all natural peanut butter)
1/2 Cup Agave Nectar
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil
1 Cup Udi's Gluten Free Granola (Vanilla)
Handful of dark chocolate chips (Ghiradelli 60% cacao chips)

Combine nut butter, agave nectar and coconut oil in a sauce pan on medium low heat, stirring until smooth and melted. Add Granola and oats and combine well. Spread with spatula into a 9x13ish pan (mine was a tin foil 10 x 8 so my bars were just a bit thicker). Sprinkle chocolate chips on top. Refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Cut into squares or bars and store in the refrigerator - either individually wrapped in plastic or in an air tight container with wax or parchment paper separating the layers.

These were seriously delicious. I ate a couple small pieces with half a banana for breakfast with my coffee and I was stuffed until lunch time. I mean I was almost still too full to eat lunch, but my lunch was amazing so I couldn't not eat it.

This Califia Farms Almond Milk creamer is pretty awesome too. I used a little too much for my tastes, but it tasted just like having a vanilla latte with only 15 calories! I love that I can have my Starbucks(ish) coffee in the morning without the guilt of added empty calories. I NEED my coffee.

The rice, broccoli and chicken prep was surprisingly simple. Rice pretty much cooks itself - but I have to say I was nervous since the only rice I generally make is like instant rice or risotto. The suspense nearly killed me - you just put the stock and rice in the pot, cover it and don't touch it for like an hour. I about died because I like to have constant control over the status of things I cook, so this was really new for me. I know, I'm nuts. But seriously, I couldn't take it. While the rice was cooking I cut up a large head of broccoli into florets and preheated my oven for the chicken. I baked the chicken with just a little Montreal chicken seasoning and some kosher salt at 375 for probably 30 minutes. I baked them until the internal temp was 160. I steamed the broccoli in a large skillet filled with about 1/2 inch of water for like 10 minutes until it was bright green and cooked but crunchy. When my rice was done I spread it in a tin foil pan to let it cool, I put the broccoli and a storage container and let it cool with the cover off - same with the chicken.

I know a lot of people do meal prep in individual containers for each day, but since I'm mostly a stay at home mom I just did them each in their own large container and if I am going out at all I will just package myself up a box for that day. This way I can have the flexibility of making it for home or more than one serving if the farmer happens to want some of this deliciousness (instead of Taco Bell). 

Today I used some of the pico de gallo that I made last night and the rice, chicken, black beans and an avocado to make a burrito bowl. O. M. G. It was fantastic. And it didn't even have sour cream or cheese! Who knew. I mean it was so good I had it again for dinner. Tomorrow I'm going to have chicken, broccoli and rice for lunch. 
So there you have it, my recovery has been a success so far. Today was good. I ate well and until I was full and I was not tempted to run through a drive-thru at all. My fitness goals include running every day and doing some type of ab/strength work out. My goal is to continue getting up at 7 AM (the time I get up to take Jack to school) through the summer and do my workout from 7-8 AM before the farmer leaves for work. These sound lofty, but I think I can do it. After all, I have been getting up at 7 AM for the past 9 months and I KNOW I will have so much more energy and get so much more accomplished during my day if I take the time to work out and exercise. 

Looking forward to tomorrow!
-The Farmer's Wife