“Cheaper” Day @ The Beach

We spent all Saturday at the beach!  It was so hot, and so beautiful, not a cloud in the sky, and the water was FREEZING.  We ended up going to the beach with many of our neighbors & friends.  Another family suggested this particular beach, and so we tagged along.  The parking was $12, but our neighbor offered to pay for this parking spot (she hopped into our van with her son for the ride).  The entry fee onto the beach was $9 per adult, so we paid $18 to get onto the beach.

I made sandwiches, brought grapes, strawberries, juice boxes, water, and other snacks.  I did not want us to have to go out and buy lunch, buy snacks, buy water – when we had everything at home, already purchased, and purchased with thought.  It’s easy to overspend on day trips, especially when we are ill prepared, and they are not well planned (or there is just lack of time).  I like to make the food, I like to feed my family exactly what we made, and what we prepared ourselves.  I’m not a huge fan of eating out, both for the cost, and the lack of health in fast food.  My children are just 1 & 4, so they are a great age to not know any different.  They grab grub from our cooler and are happy.  I’m sure once they get older, they will understand that we can buy pizza, and other boardwalk deliciousness, but for now – they are eating “at home” and I love it.

The entry fee to this beach is a bit steep, but because I was not involved in the planning, I did not want to complain.  We did spend 8+ hours at the beach, with lifeguards on stand by, so it was well worth it – especially for a full day of fun & activity.  I have already done some research for less expensive entry fees, and we’ll try those beaches next time.  I also have to weigh it against the actual distance it takes to get to the beach.  The shorter the ride, the less it costs.

Cheers to your GOALS, and making the adventures of your life, as cost effective as possible.

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Pineapple, and it’s okay to eat more.

Sometimes we need to overeat, have more than enough food available – to stay on track.

Post lunch, I always want/need more food.  Even though I just ate a healthy salad of romaine lettuce, and carrot, and tomato, and 3 whole eggs, I just need something else.  Usually this makes me start negotiating with myself.  Well, you can have one Clif Bar, but nothing else, or a handful of pretzels will be just fine.  And yesterday, I decided to do something different.  I decided to go to the farmer’s market and get myself a delicious “snack” but one that would keep me 100% on track, without compromising my Whole30 diet plan.

I purchased this delicious cold pineapple, and once those cravings hit at 3pm, I was able to SATISFY them by enjoying all of this pineapple.

The other day, I ate my salad, with some pieces of my rotisserie chicken on top.  And once I was done, I was REALLY HUNGRY or REALLY craving something else.  And in that instance, I realized, I could have more chicken (and stay on plan) or overeat on processed junk.  And so, I decided to make myself ANOTHER bowl of chicken, and I stuck with my plan.

My current weight is at 159, down from 165, where I started.

And I’m motivated to keep going, as my goal is 139lbs.

Healthy eating with weight loss as the goal, does not mean you will ALWAYS and FOREVER have to fight cravings, or under-eat or go hungry.  Sometimes staying on track means you have to OVEREAT or just eat MORE of the healthy grub.  I would rather have another heaping plate of SALAD with my favorite fixings’ than have a handful of zero nutritional pretzels or chips, or a food that would make me want to eat MORE food (like a donut or cookie).

Everyone is different, and I’m certainly figuring this out as I go.  But what I know for sure, is once I lose this weight, I want to keep it off, forever. I have successfully lost 25lbs and 19lbs in the past, and gained all back, twice.  And this time around, I don’t want to gain it back again.  Instead, I want to add into my life and diet plan and health plan, options to eat ALL of the pineapple, eat 3 bananas, eat some peanut butter, eat an extra salad, eat more chicken – if my body is craving it – in order to stay on track.

Cheers to our goals, and adjusting your plans, as you see fit.

 

Fresh Potato Fries, and living off the grid?

Yesterday afternoon, my husband spent some time playing music at our local farmer’s market.  For this, the organizer gave us fresh potatoes, eggplant and a ton of tomatoes.  It wasn’t a monetary reward, but who doesn’t like whole free food?

The potatoes were still dirty, because they were just picked from the ground.  Honesty, they tasted so delicious.  I cut them up, and put the in the oven for an hour at 400 degrees.  They came out so crispy and delicious and lovely and we did not even need ketchup to eat them up!  I can’t wait to make these again.

Lately, I’m so incredibly drawn to whole food, raw food, real food.  I can’t wait to eat my lunch salad, and I am thinking more and more about my own garden.  We live in an area where we have a very little backyard space, and an extensive garden would not be possible.  I could try to grow some tomatoes and zucchini.  I also live in an area where we have pretty cold winters.  It gets frigid temps from December into April, and sometimes even May.  And my ideal location would include a mild winter, and a mild summer.

I have been watching Port Protection on YouTube.  It’s the best show ever. I mean, most people would find it hardly entertaining, but I find it so interesting.  This group of residents who reside in Port Protection live off the land.  They hunt everything they eat, and they gather wood non-stop.  It’s always wet, raining, and pretty much cold.  Those weather conditions aren’t ideal for me, as I need GREEN food.  I want to eat salads, and salads and more salads!

I think North Carolina might be more my cup of tea!  I keep looking on realtor.com to see what type of homes are available, and where are they available.  I’m not looking to go completely off grid, as we do have 3 children, who I want to have visit as often as possible.  But I’m thinking – once we retire, once the kids are in college and self sufficient, we head south, and we do as much gardening as possible, and become as self sufficient as possible.  I want my children to be able to live with us – if they want, and have access to lakes, creeks, forests, natural parks, and I want beautiful nature to surround us daily.  I would love to have our grand-kids come down for weeks at a time, and hang with us often!

And then the other part of me wants to rent the smallest apartment in NYC possible, and live there!!!

Am I crazy, or am I just really really trying to figure it out?

 

Covering Up, protect yourself from the sun.

I was never a huge fan of excessive & long exposure to the sun.  I was never someone that craved tanning.  I never laid out at the beach lathering myself with oil, versus sunblock.  Instead, I always tried to cover up.

And now, the older and smarter I grow, I want even less sun, even less skin damage.

I wear my alma mater’s hat every time I eave my house.  And because I have a 1 & 4 year old, I have to be outside.  They love the outdoors, as they should, and at this time, I need to be out there with them – whether its in the pool, at the park, going for a walk, or going for a bike ride.  And so, hat on.  Glasses on.  My favorite face sunscreen is Olay’s SPF 15.  I put this on my FACE, on my upper lip, and also on my neck & exposed chest area.

And so with the sunglasses, the hat, the sun screen, I still truly couldn’t get covered up enough.  Regardless of the t-shirt or shirt I wore, my chest/neck area were always exposed.  And so I went into my closet and realized that my gf gave me an Old Navy denim-like shirt she did not want anymore.

And poof – this is the cutest thing since miniature poodles and gluten free cupcakes.  I have this exact shirt and it looks so good with a bathing-suit or bikini, it looks so cute with my Nike leggings, or shorts, or anything really that you want to wear while biking, running, or walking, or just CHASING after the kids.  I can button it all the way up to my neck, without actually having to wear a turtleneck, and my skin stays sun-free & wrinkle free.

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I’m not afraid of getting older, I’m psyched about it – but I want to protect my skin, take care of it – and enjoy the journey.  Looking good – is an absolute bonus.

I already don’t smoke, I already drink lots of water, I already don’t tan, and I already wear hats & sunglasses.  Now it was time for more full body protection.  And I’m excited to discover more and more ways to slow down aging.  Aging is chronic.  It’s going to get us all.  But until it does, prevent as much as you can, and we might as well love & enjoy the rewards of NOT tanning, NOT smoking, NOT sunning ourselves to an early departure.

Cheers, and stay uber motivated in your BEAUTIFUL goals.

Eat more raw/plants, and beating cravings.

Last Tuesday (exactly 1 week ago), my town hosted an open air farmers market, full of local farmers selling fresh veggies & fruit.  And it was fabulous!  I ended up putting both of my little people in my stroller, picking up my neighbor & great girlfriend on the way, and we trekked the 1 mile to get to the market.  It was my first time visiting & patronizing the stands and I took a shiny $10 with me.

I purchased two cucumbers, a zucchini, a yellow squash, 4 HUGE tomatoes, kale and 5 jalapenos, all for $10.  As soon as I got home, I sauteed the kale, and sauteed the zucchini.  I ended up cutting up a tomato an sprinkling some salt on it, and then grilling up a jalapeno for my husband.

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It was truly the most lovely din din!  And full of whole food.

Today is Tuesday again, and the market is on – again!!! I’m looking forward to pushing the stroller all of the way to the market, to see what raw goodies we can purchase.  I’m psyched to be supporting local farmers, and I’m even more psyched to be able to eat and make delicious real food.

Yesterday, I had a salad for lunch, and a salad for dinner.  I had a salad for lunch today, and I plan on having a combo of the above raw/plant food for dinner.  My husband, has also been eating the same.  He’s looking to get a bit leaner.  And the scale is moving south for him – because of more plant food, more green food, less processed food, and more whole food – in his meals & daily diet.

As soon as I finished my salad today at lunch, I was still hungry.  Not truly hunger, as I just ate a whole bowl of romaine lettuce,and carrot and tomato, etc, with a few pieces of rotisserie chicken, but hungry as in:  I really want to FILL my stomach with grub.  Not healthy grub either.  I was eyeing the pretzels, or the Clif bars, and some other snacks my office keeps and all of the sudden I said: NO WAY JOSE, NOT THIS TIME.

I’m on Day 14 of my Whole30 plan, and I refuse to give into the crap, give into the cravings, and give into my triggers.  I am both bored, stressed, and anxious about work – depending on the minute, on the email, but such is my current work situation, and I refuse to add UNHEALTHY, UNHAPPY to that list – because of poor food choices.

And so I cut up a few more pieces of my rotisserie chicken, and I ate until I was TRULY full!!!  And the cravings went away.  I REFUSE to be a victim to cravings.  I refuse to be a victim to emotion, triggers and crap that truly would ONLY make me feel worst, not better.

For the past several months I have been starting & restarting Whole30.  And after day 7 or day 8, I tend to GIVE IN and start the sugar binge.  But not this time, not anymore.  I’m taking it 1 day at a time, and today is Day 14, and I will finish strong.  I just made myself a super hot cup of green tea, and I’m determined to finish off my day with a plant based and mostly raw dinner.  Why?  Because I know this is the absolute BEST for me.  It’s not a Clif bar, it’s not sugar, it’s not succumbing to a craving because of a trigger.  Instead, I choose health.  I choose better, because I KNOW better.  And so – here we go.

Stay strong my friends, stay extremely strong, and be wise for yourselves.  Know what is trying to knock you down, knock you off, and say:  Hell no, not today Felicia!

 

 

Live Your Future, right now.

Sometimes our goals are so far away, that we have no idea how to get there, if we ever will, and is it right to be so absolutely focused on our goals?  Does this take away from the present?

Today, my goals make my present absolutely enjoyable.  I was so happy that I spent my weekend at home, at our community pool, taking so many walks with my children in the stroller, a few solo & family bike rides – all in lots of sunshine.  It was all free.  Free everyday fun where the outside and nature provided 100% of the entertainment.

I made the most delicious iced coffees, with whip creme on top with sprinkled cinnamon.  I don’t need to go to Starbucks, or a local coffee shop to get my fix!  I can make my very own, and share it with those I love.  I made one for neighbor, my husband and my step daughter.  They were delicious, fun, and truly full of LOVE.  I opened up my kitchen cabinets and said, “Okay – what do we have?” And I used what we had to create deliciousness.

Just right now, I was taking a lil break at work, taking a stroll around our office building, and I said to myself:  Just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and the goals will come together.  My main two goals are my goals of HEALTH and WEALTH.  I want to continue to eat healthy & Whole30 each and every day – and I want to continue to reduce my expenses, and build up my savings, so we have 1M invested/saved.  These two are huge goals.  The journey to reaching them is actually the fun part.  It will be absolutely AWESOME to get there, and LIVE my life and make the decisions I need, when we get there – but right now right here, this past weekend, this is the journey.  It’s fun and exhilarating, and awesome, and hard, and motivating and most of all:  worth it!

Know exactly what you want, how you want to live, what you want to learn and explore and experience – and go after it.  I’m just so absolutely psyched to practice exactly what I need, to live exactly as I want to – right now (while mimicking my future).  The key is to create your daily life EXACTLY as your current goals & dream future.  Make your future your present and your happiness a daily present.

 

 

Cash Only, breaking up with the charge card.

I convinced myself that using my Amazon Chase Visa credit card, and paying the entire balance off each month is the way to go.  Usually, I receive a $30-$60 statement credit for using the cards, and this is well worth it.  No more.

I overspend using the credit cards.  I have no limit (as the credit card has no limit) and I let myself buy ANYTHING (mostly anything) I want at the grocery store, versus buying within a budget.  I am not mindful when using the credit card.  Instead, I buy what I need & want and what looks good, and I tell myself I’ll pay it off later.  If I have a grocery list, I go over it, and buy what is advertised and marketed, what I thought I forgot to add to the list, and so many extra items end up in the cart.

I instead, I am going to start using cash for my grocery purchases, and gas, and anything else that needs to be purchased.  This will cause me to be extremely more mindful and thoughtful.  I’m breaking up with the charge card!

Saturday morning I drove to Aldi, and I brought $140 cash with me (I have not been there for 2 weeks).  I ended up buying less, I put in 1 bag of chips, versus 2, I put in 1 ketchup bottles instead of 2, I ended up getting 1 package of burgers instead of 3, and so on.  Once I got to the register, I told the cashier that I only had $140 so to please warn me if we went over.  Instead, I was $20 under.  This was a win, as it seems my Aldi check out bill kept getting larger and larger each week.

Sunday night, I drove to the grocery store to buy some seltzer water, and romaine lettuce.  But, once I got to the store, I realized that I left my $20 at home, and I did not have any credit cards on me.  Oh well, no big deal, even though I had to go home empty handed, I did not spend any money on things I did not need.  We already had plenty of food and water to drink & eat at home.  Instead, I used that $20 on gas for the car this morning.

It’s nice to log onto my Chase credit card this morning, and not see a single item charged all weekend.  This is a win win win, and I’m psyched to continue to use CASH versus CREDIT.

 

 

Down 6lbs, thank you Whole30, Day 9.

I got up on the scale this morning, and I’m down to 159.  I ended up just having some cucumber for dinner, and basically chowing down on an apple standing up.  Instead of a dining room, we have a big island that connects our kitchen to the family room.  The kids sit & eat around this island, and my husband likes to eat after the kids go to sleep, which is around 8/9pm.  This is too late for me, so instead, I either eat with the kids, always standing up, watching over the little birds.

I was so hungry at lunch yesterday, that I ate what I needed to (a combo of sauteed kale, zucchini, tomato, peanuts & raisins w/ salad dressing), and then a really cold delicious banana, and my hunger/appetite subsided for dinner.  I really don’t need to do dinner each and every night, especially if I eat enough at lunch and in the afternoon, which makes sleeping more pleasant (less digestion) and I certainty don’t need the calories for the next 7-8 hours of rest.

Creating the healthiest diet lifestyle for ourselves truly involves figuring out what exactly works for us.  It’s not always three meals per day, it’s not always 6 mini meals.  It’s what works for you, for that day, for that meal.  Yesterday for me, this meant eating a larger lunch, and a tiny dinner.  It’s easy to get upset with our minds, our bods, when we aren’t able to go along with what we think we should do/eat, but instead, make up your own rules – from the evidence you have – your life.   And keep pushing forward.

Health is the goal.  Feeling fit.  Feeling good.  Feeling well.  Feeling rested, and being all of the above is more important than perfection.  Get it done, and do it right – whatever is right for you.

 

Day 6, Whole 30

I am not 100% compliant with the Whole 30 plan.  I guess I’m using the IDEA of Whole 30, their rules, and their plan, and just adjusting, customizing it a bit, meal per meal.

I like to say, oh I follow Whole 30.  For some reason this makes me feel comfortable and confident that success will ensue.  So many of us need a PLAN, and then we can take it from there.  I also feel that Whole 30 was 100% responsible for my SUCCESS when I lost weight and gained health – with it, in the past.  (Even thought I was not 100% compliant day in and day out.)

What do I eat/drink that is non-compliant?

salad dressings – whatever is available
wine – red wine, white wine, social occasions on the weekends, always with seltzer, always with lots of ice (yes, even red)
peanuts – this is my snack at work, and I also like to add to my salads
cappuccinos – coffee that is not black, if the opportunity is there, not daily
cheese –  if added onto already in a salad or a piece of chicken, not daily

I could stress these, but I choose not to, instead I keep on going and keep on trekking!  On most days, I have eggs for breakfast, either scrambled or hard boiled.  Then banana, apples, any type of fruit.  I have been eating salads for lunch, usually romaine lettuce & spinach, with tomato, and broccoli and raisins & peanuts.  Afternoon snack, more fruit – apple, banana (cold from the fridge tastes so good), and then a HOT herbal tea.  For dinner, I have been flexible.  Last night I had a bunch of cherries and strawberries at the pool with the kids, and then I had a small piece of tuna steak with a little bit of Caesar dressing.

I continue to wake up each day feeling better and better, stronger and stronger, and with less and less cravings.  The most important part is to not find yourself HUNGRY or without food, at special events or social outings.  Because when out and about, when hunger strikes, we’re much more likely to have those few handfuls of chips, or fried this or fried that.  Instead, eat those hard boiled eggs, apples, bananas, and stay full on WHOLE FOOD.

This is my plan so far. Down from 165 to 161, and the goal is 139.  This mama is going to make it!

 

Obsessed with Seltzer

Sometimes, water just doesn’t do it for me.  Sometimes, when you are REALLY hungry, and just probably thirsty, or truly actually HUNGERS, which turns to HANGRY, it’s time to jazz it up!

I start off my day with a big cup/glass of ICE & SELTZER (and tap/filtered water if there is room).  Even though I don’t enjoy spending the extra cash-flow on cans, I really really really love my seltzer, and it keeps me in line with my HEALTH goals.

My body, first thing in the morning, instead of craving pancakes or waffles, or bland water, I drink this up!  (And especially when I AM craving things I should not be!) And right before bed, right after I brush my teeth (which I do sometimes too early), I fill up on a can of seltzer & lots and lots of ice.  It keeps my stomach full, and my body on point, and heading towards the right direction.

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I buy most of my selzer at Aldi‘s.  They have the best prices at 12 cans for $2.99, but lately another grocery store had a great special, 24 cans for $3.99.  Hard to pass this up.  I love all of the flavors, and the more the merrier.  I try to limit myself to one or two per day at my house, and my office also has plenty of seltzer water available.  Makes it easier to stick to my beloved Whole30, especially when post lunch munchies start to wake up.  I also like to fill up on mint tea, and hot water with lemon.

We have to stay absolutely hydrated, and full on zero cal fluids.  We have to flush out the toxins, the cravings, the sugar, and the grub, crap we no longer want in our bodies.  Our bodies are gorgeous, really incredible machines, and we have to DRINK UP THE WATER to make sure we get to the EXACT goals we have committed to, and the EXACT LIFE that is ahead.

My goal is to hit 139lbs.  I’m currently 5’6 and weigh 161.  I started Whole30 Day 6, at 165lbs.  I’m 33 years old, and it’s certainly time to be & live at my healthiest weight, and healthiest body.  I’m down 4lbs, and we have 22lbs to go!!!  I know I can do it – so thank you for READING.  Wishing you absolutely ALL of the success possible.

If you have not yet tried Whole30 – do it.  I’ts truly an incredible LIFE plan.  Similar to ATKINS (I would assume from mediocre knowledge of Atkins, but it eliminates DAIRY/cheese, but you can do POTATOES)!  Not too bad of a trade off.