Category Archives: Dinner Menu

Juice Cleanse: The End is Near (Day 3)


This is the last day of my juice cleanse.

I woke up this morning to the sound of two trains passing in my back yard. I got up and started my day, but didn’t start my first juice until a little after 8a.

I chugged some water before I left the house and opened my juice in the car. These things are FULL so I almost always have a little overflow when I open them. No different this morning when I opened the green juice. Luckily only a sip went into the cup holder, some dribbled on the seat, and some on my herringbone skirt. Hope the car doesn’t stink this afternoon.

Green juice is sweet again this morning. Did require a VIGOROUS shake though, as they all will I’m sure. Maybe I should have started with the beet juice to get it out of the way.

I’m sipping this one, like a normal juice…for now. I think I’ll drink carrot next. I left the grapefruit one at home to be my last one today since its my favorite.

10:15a: My alarm went off at 10a for my second juice, but I had forgotten to change the alarms around to account for starting my first juice around 8a. I’m sipping water now. Juice 2 is at 10:30a.

I’m gonna drink the almond milk next (mainly because I’m worried about its viability this late in the game). I noticed this morning I had the Day 2 almond milk today, so I must’ve had Day 3 almond milk yesterday. I’m not sure their days mean anything other than to help the juicer determine how many of each someone needs. Who knows though, Day 3 might’ve been the most recently pressed. Anyway, I’m drinking Day 2 almond milk today (Day 3).

I’m gonna so beet right before I go to the gym again. As I said before, I’m finishing the day with “c ya.” so that puts the two carrot ones back to back again.

10:30a: Almond juice is getting a little frothy, but it still tastes fine. This is the first time I’ve had it plain so far. It tastes like watered down almond milk (unsweetened and not vanilla flavored, of course). No real flavor other than almond milk. No big deal.

Haven’t been hungry yet today. Still just moving through the juices, but I do think yesterday really was “the hump.” I’m much more centered and focused today. I think packing my lunch for tomorrow might’ve helped with that because I know now it is already taken care of and ready for me to just grab and go.

Barre3 might’ve also helped with the centering. If you haven’t tried Barre3, go there. NOW! And try it. It is so centering and balancing. It’s all about the mind-body connection. I used to think that stuff was mumbo jumbo, but I swear by it now. I always feel so much better after a class.

My body feels lighter and I feel good. I haven’t had much in the way of stomach trouble or “emergencies” beyond a super FULL bladder all day. So besides the mental combat involved with the juice cleanse, it hasn’t been that bad. Mindless and monotonous, but not bad.

Eating healthy can be exhausting, especially when you’re planning meals (breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner) to eat every four hours (to regulate blood sugar). It’s overwhelming and stressful, but worth it. I’m hoping this kickstart will be a strong jumping off point. I’m going to stick with fruits and veggies for a couple more days (mostly, we will have to see about dinner Thursday and Friday) and try to really focus on clean healthy meals.

11:08a: Finished the almond milk. It was a little thick towards the bottom due I settling. Had an “urge” come on pretty quick and made a dash for the bathroom. First time for that the whole cleanse. If that continues, I see why you’d introduce solids slowly. (TMI? Hey, you’re the one still reading about the cleanse, jack!)

12:30p: Had been fine up to now with no cravings and was in a totally positive headspace until I got some particularly frustrating news after a work call. I’m so mad I could spit. Now the only thing I can think about is a big ole greasy cheeseburger and a chocolate milkshake.

This is a key problem with my eating habits. Everything was totally fine and I was super on track, and now, because I’m pissed off, I’m ready to self-sabotage. I FEEL like a big junky lunch would make me feel better. I FEEL like eating a crappy meal would calm my anxiety and annoyance. When really I KNOW it will just make me feel worse and more pissed off that another person sent me down this negative mental path. I’m sad I’m having juice for lunch. Ready to emotionally eat? Yeah. Pissed? You bet. Next juice in a half hour. Yeah beets! Not! Grr.

1:00p: Having my second favorite juice in order to try to lift my spirits a bit. Apple, carrot, ginger instead of beet.

I was getting over the previous annoyance I was coping with when another one came up. I had my water, now I’m drinking my juice. My mood is sour though. Still want a jar of marshmallow fluff!

3:30p: I’m in a better headspace now and it’s time for juice number 4. I took an office poll based on color (orange or purple–carrot or beet) and got one of each and my assistant who loves purple was the tie breaker, so beet it is. I drank eight more ounces of water and gave the beet juice a good shake. Bottoms up.

It’s not that bad really. It’s just a unique flavor that I’m not used too. It’s been kind of cool to have these water based drinks without sugar. I haven’t really been super hungry at all and my cravings have been minimal (with the exception of the emotional ones). There really have been no averse health side effects and I am surprised that I haven’t been just absolutely miserable the whole time. I thought I would be, but was going to push through anyway, and that hasn’t been the case at all.

Side effects so far: bad breath (gum fixed that), FULL bladder (duh, I’m
consuming a minimum of 146.7 ounces of liquid daily), one “emergency” (no big deal), huge introspection.

I’ll be drinking the carrot one right after I finish at the gym (6p). I’m going to do some elliptical time.

4:16p: Second “emergency” today and I just turned down a free chocolate milkshake (well my assistant director turned it down for me). Thank goodness I’m almost there.

6:00p: Just got home from the gym. I did 30 sweaty minutes on the elliptical. Go me! I also walked into the wrong locker room as I was leaving. I was at the Merchants gym and walked right into the locker room…straight ahead I saw a body in the shower and thought to myself, “Huh, I thought that was a hot tub.” My thoughts then proceeded as follows, “Wow, that’s a naked person, oh my god, that’s a man, OH MY GAWD THOSE ARE….” Luckily, no one (inside the locker room) saw me, but a guy outside had run on to tell me. He grabbed my arm and was like, “Hey, totally not trying to scare you, but this is the guys locker room.” I thanked him, but said, “I know. It’s too late, I’ve seen too much.” Totally red faced, I skulked out of the gym with my sunglasses on.

Now I’m sitting at my kitchen table blogging and drinking carrot juice. Once I get this one down, I’ll shower up and wait until the alarm sounds for my final juice. Yeah! Tomorrow will be like Christmas morning. Have you ever met a person more excited about broccoli soup?!?!?!

8:30p: Just got back from Old Navy where we picked up some new swimmies for the hubs. Now it’s time for MY.LAST.JUICE. I saved my favorite until last today. See ya later, juice!

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Juice Cleanse: Getting Over the Hump (Day 2)


I slept a little late today, about 30 minutes, and decided to have my first juice as soon as I got out of the shower. I didn’t wake up starving, not full or bloated either, just normal. Last night, right before bed (around 9:45p), I ate two cherry tomatoes. I was getting hungry because I finished my milk about two hours before and the cleanse allows raw fruits and vegetables if you feel you might crack. It was either that or a piece of cheese.

This morning I just wanted to get one of the kale juices out of the way. I started with “oh yeah.” Kale, collard, apple, lemon. I chugged 8oz water before opening it, but started the juice right around 7:30a.

I don’t know why, but it is a little more tolerable this morning. (My juices do look like they will require a good shake before drinking as they all have settled quite a bit. I’m sure that’s because they aren’t only three days old.) I was able to drink it down in about 15 minutes without much face scrunching. It tasted sweeter today too. A good start I think.

9:55a: My assistant director brought in Krispy Kreme donuts for security and maintenance today…and sweet Roger brought one in to me that I had to turn down. So hard.

After he left I immediately got hungry. I chugged 8oz water and waited for my Juice 2 alarm to go off at 10a.

10a: I’m having the carrot one. I’m going to knock out the three I don’t love first today and I’m drinking from the bottle (easier to chug). The juice is well settled and needs a good shake.

I’m still calling this one carrot milk as that’s the flavor profile. It’s very basic as opposed to acidic. I am shaking between each sip due to settling, but again, I think that’s because my juices were frozen. They were pressed in Nashville on Thursday, frozen Thursday night, Friday, Saturday and began to dethaw on Sunday. They were first opened Monday. So, completely against the advice of the juicer, but I had no choice. The flavor is fine.

I’m taking a different approach on the juice today as I am chugging more so than savoring.

Some side effects so far: bad breath and FULL bladder.

Really with this, you aren’t hungry, there just isn’t any emotional satisfaction with what you’ve had. It’s not like, “Wow! That was an amazingly tasty meal!” It’s more like, “Oh, there’s my alarm…better have another juice…oh, ok. Just two and a half hours to the next one.” Which, I guess, is good. I’m not sure food should be as emotional as it is. That may be part of the problem.

In a Women’s Health and Fitness article called Emotional Eating, psychologist Louise Adams is quoted as saying, “In our modern world, where food is everywhere, where snacking is encouraged and where advertising promotes emotional eating, we all eat emotionally.” The article continues, “While emotional eating may be an occasional and temporary way of seeking short-term relief, it can become troublesome both psychologically and nutritionally if left to become a habitual way of dealing with emotional turmoil. Emotional eating occurs in the absence of physical hunger and according to psychologists, can be categorized as an ‘avoidance coping’ strategy. Emotional eaters typically eat food they enjoyed in childhood as well as high-fat or high-sugar snacks, which trigger a serotonin response in the brain, causing the emotional eater to experience pleasure while eating.”

BINGO! See Oreo binge, Peeps consumption in previous blog. Not to mention cake for breakfast last week and eating when bored just because a tasty treat is available or eating a whole bag of gummy worms because I need to get rid of them so I won’t be tempted all week!

I also suffer from self-sabotage. Sure, I’d like to lose seven to 10 pounds. So I work out (most weeks I do three days of barre3, work with my trainer once, and do a cardio session by myself once) and try to eat healthy. But when I have a good week where I work out a lot or am down a few pounds, I subconsciously agree to “reward” myself with a bad day–sodas, cookies, mall samples, milk shake, pretzels, candy–just because I can and then I not only feel horrible physically, but emotionally too. My “reward” turns into a psychological punishment. I’m conquering that some with this cleanse because I am battling the demon saying, “You stayed on cleanse all day yesterday. That donut couldn’t hurt THAT bad!” But I know it will hurt my psyche. I’ll know I didn’t succeed and I’ll know I HAD to cheat. It would probably taste good. REALLY GOOD because its all hot and warm and gooey and sweet, but right after I ate it, I’d feel bad and think, “I shouldn’t have done that. It wasn’t THAT good. Was it worth it just for one? Well I already messed up, so I can have another or two.” It’s exhausting!

This cleanse definitely eliminates that. There isn’t much emotion but there is disappointment that you aren’t eating what you want, it is just accompanied with the realization that you also aren’t deprived or starving. It’s a crazy thing to experience.

11:45a: It’s about 45 minutes to my next juice and I’m experiencing a low level headache (like my eyes feel tired) and I’m a teeny bit hungry (tiny hunger pangs). I’m sipping some water now, but may move my next juice up some. I’m just trying to stretch right outside of the two hour mark. I think the hunger is coming on more quickly because I chugged the last juice. Maybe I should drink them a bit more slowly so they stay with me a little longer.

12:30p: Sipping my 8oz water helped and I walked around the office some. It’s time for my third juice today. I’m gonna have apple, carrot, ginger (even though that will be two carrot ones back to back) since I want to sip it a bit more. I’m gonna drink the beet one right before barre3 since I’m probably going to drink that one faster. That leaves the grapefruit one for the afternoon and the almond for the end of the day.

When I finish this juice, I’ll be exactly halfway through the cleanse.

I think all these juices would taste great with vodka or rum in them (except the almond might need Bailey’s).

2:25p: Its about 35 minutes to my afternoon juice. I am getting hungry again. I’d say my pangs are about a 4. My stomach just gurgled (not a full growl, but a definite rumble). I’m also feeling a subtle pressure above my right eye. I took about 30 minutes to drink my last juice…I tried to take it a little slower hoping to stave off any hunger until right before my next juice. (Another belly gurgle.)

Eight more ounces of water might help some. I’ll start sipping that some now.

Normally, I’d grab a couple bucks and head into the mall to grab something to satisfy that hunger immediately…a pretzel or a cinnamon roll. Those are what I really want and I’m feeling a little blue about more juice. Like I said, no satisfaction with food during this, just matter of fact consumption of liquid.

I just closed my office neighbor’s door with my eyes closed to quell the temptation of Reece’s Cups.

3pm: The water didn’t help much with hunger. It helped for a minute then I got busy with work to distract me until now. My stomach growled.

I’m going to try to sip this one too. It’s the “c ya.” So it tastes like grapefruit and is really juicy. And isn’t grapefruit a natural hunger combatant?

After this, my next juice is beet (right before barre3 class) and that will be a quick one.

Are you seeing I’m struggling to stay in the “now” today? I’ve barely taken a sip from this juice and I’m already thinking about the next one. I’ve also already started figuring out what I’m going to eat on Thursday. I’m going to do a clean smoothie with protein in it for breakfast and an avocado-cucumber soup for lunch. (I’m supposed to gradually introduce foods back into my diet being careful of lean meats right away.) I’m still figuring out snacks, but I know I’ll be eating out Thursday night because we are seeing Avett Brothers that night.

I will say that the “c ya.” juice is GOOD. It is 100% my favorite.

4:33p: It’s an hour until my next juice. I drank “c ya” very slowly. And I’m not hungry yet, but my mouth feels fuzzy…especially the back of my front teeth. I got some gum from a coworker to help with that. Hopefully it will stay fresh from now through my class tonight.

I’m interested to see how hungry I’ll be after my class since it can be a pretty intense workout. I think the calorie burn is between 350-400 at least. I’ll drink the almond to end the day again around 8p, about an hour after my class ends.

Beet is next. :/

5:30p: Chugged 8oz water and opened the beet juice. I basically guzzled it down in about three minutes as I walked into my barre3 class. I’m a little nervous about potty breaks evoked by this one. I chose a space by the door in case I needed an emergency exit! The hubs says these classes are basically an hour exercise in not farting. Sometimes I think he’s right. Fingers crossed.

I’m pretty much ready to be done with this! Not that it’s been super hard, just monotonous.

7p: Made it through barre3 with no “slips.” Off to the grocery for Thursday’s meals and then home.

7:30p: The grocery store was a bit of a temptation; especially because I was at EarthFare where all the food is just out and open. Got some soups, some fruit, some vegetables and some almond crackers and hummus.

I packed my lunch for Thursday so it would be ready and I can visualize it tomorrow.

I’m starting the day off with a protein smoothie (blueberries, strawberries, protein powder, almond milk and vanilla). For lunch, creamy broccoli soup with broccoli from my garden chopped up in there topped with some cheddar cheese and served with cherry tomatoes. For a snack, some garlic hummus with a Fuji apple and almond crackers. As I said, for dinner, we will be heading to Avett, but I think that’s a pretty good start after the cleanse.

After I did that, I mixed up my almond milk. I put it in the blender with some honey and some mint leaves from my garden. I also heated it up a bit. The additions didn’t do much, but it made me feel better.

I have a little bit of a headache, but I’m actually quite full right now.

I’m watching the So You Think You Can Dance audition show right now being super excited about my food on Thursday–I don’t know if thinking ahead will turn out to be a good thing or not.

Here’s to finishing day two staying on cleanse. I hope my juices are still good tomorrow and I can make it through the whole day! Thanks for sticking with me!

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Juice Cleanse: An Experiment in Willpower (Day 1)


I know it’s been a terribly long time since I blogged. I think that’s how my last five entries have started. For that, I apologize.

This blog and two others to follow will be about a new three-day challenge I’ve taken on. I’m doing a juice cleanse. Yea, I know, it’s a total fad and yes, I’m jumping on board. The stars aligned last week and I was able to get my hands on some juice and I have three low-key days without much on the calendar before a big couple of weekends, so I thought I would give it a shot.

So…if you’re thinking about commenting how dumb it is, don’t. It’s a personal thing. Sometimes I find myself slipping into a negative headspace about food. I also eat A LOT of junk (a small colony of Peeps Chicks and Bunnies made their Easter home in my belly). This cleanse is sort of a chance for me to take a hard look at my eating habits/desires and the feelings attached AND clean out my inner systems. This blog will outline the first day. Don’t read on if you’re not interested in the intricacies. 🙂

The cleanse: juice Nashville 3-day cleanse

Morning:
Got up for work and started my day as normal, except opted not to wear make up. Not because of the juicing or because I was running late, but because sometimes it can be very zen to be a natural face. Also I may be working in a “clean foods, natural face” headspace. I am prepared, though, to be asked if I’m alright or told I look tired.

First juice at a few minutes before 8am. I am sitting outside the bank waiting to make a deposit. I open “c ya” and take a sip. It’s good. I was expecting more smoothie than juice, but it is definitely juice. I try to determine all the tastes first, and definitely taste the grapefruit and a hint of ginger, but nothing overpowering. The juice is comprised of orange, grapefruit, apple and ginger. Bub and I talked last night and determined this to be the best option for breakfast and the easiest intro. (Note: he is not cleansing.)

After I deposit my checks I start calculating how to space these juices out today–every 2-3 hours equates to 2.5 hours to me. I set alarms in my phone and immediately realize my last juice will be at 8:30p on this schedule. Not sure if that’s good or bad.

Also, before each juice I need to drink approximately 8oz of water too. I’m stocked up with three bottles of water to chug half of before each juice.

So far, so good minus the anxiety of whether I can do this or not and being obsessed with what comes next. How do I eat after Wednesday? Is this really a kick start? Can I stick with it?

10:20a: Alarm will sound in about 10 minutes for juice 2, so I sip-chug 8oz more of water. As I finish up, my alarm sounds.

10:30a: I decide to go with “oh yeah.” It’s the one I’m most scared of…kale, collard, apple and lemon. I give it a good shake and pour it into my cup (I’ve decided a cup is a better approach to the bottle with lid). It’s got some leafy bits hanging out at the bottom of the bottle and I’m hoping its not mold since I waited longer than three days to start the cleanse. (My friend picked up my juices on Thursday. I immediately froze them and started the cleanse on Monday. Not ideal, but I had no choice). This one is GREEN! I mean GREEN. It tastes green, like a salad. I can taste the apple a bit and know it is citrusy, but I CAN taste the kale. This one is not my favorite (out of the two), but its not bad at all. I’m having a mental block a bit about it and I’m not sure why. I love Naked Green Machine, but probably because its loaded with sugar and calories. Also probably because thinking of Green Machine makes me think of Starbucks, which makes me think of Birthday Cake Pops. Hence the cleanse.

The green juice is earthy, the spinach I’m sure, but sweet…kind of like a fine wine, it has layers. Swirl it in your cup, ignore the dregs, breathe it in (smells like a spinach salad), take a sip, swish in your mouth, feel the smoothness of the flavor and the sweet, earthy lingering.

***A side note on freezing, if you do freeze, these juices take a long time to dethaw. I mean some were rock solid after two days in the fridge after being frozen. Probably best to just drink immediately as they suggest so you don’t have to fool with all that.***

No burping with the first juice, burps with this one are salad-y. Those may be caused by how quickly I’m trying to drink this one. I don’t think I want to let it get warm…or let it settle. It is good, just different.

I’m not hungry for sure, but my bladder is FULL. TMI, I know, but legit, it’s going to be a long day!

1pm: My alarm sounds for juice three as I wrap up a meeting. My bladder is full and I’m starting to get hungry, so as we tie things up, I chug 8oz water and end the meeting.

As I move the extra chair out of my office, I see the candy bowl on my office neighbor’s desk has been refilled (Reese’s Cups) and my brain begins to wage an internal war.

I make my way to the restroom an come back to pick my juice. I settle on “i heart carrots.” Surprise y’all, it’s ORANGE! Orange. It looks like a paint brush rinsing cup. It smells like a bag of petite diced carrots and tastes like carrots. No layers, no aftertaste, it tastes like carrots. Like carrot milk…it’s a little thicker than the last two and still smooth, but different.

I’m not hating this, but I am battling the desire to have JUST ONE piece of chocolate peanut buttery goodness. I’m sure a sense of accomplishment will develop at some point when I don’t give in. I’ve got a slight headache, slight, slight, slight and am just feeling a little bored even though I’m at work–lethargic I would say. My trainer canceled, and I’m kind of glad about it. I’m debating signing up for a barre class, but think I might just walk the dog after work. We will see.

Halfway through the carrot juice and I’ve decided the first juice today was my favorite so far. I’m not mixing anything and only tasting them one at a time as to fully try each one to see what I do and don’t like.

2:40p: I’m a bit consumed with deciding what to eat when the cleanse is over and trying not to let myself get into a negative headspace about not actually eating for the next three days. I’m not really hungry, just lusting. I put all the drinks into myfitnesspal.com. All in at the end of the day, its 1350 calories consumed (roughly) – a total of 146.7 ounces of liquid consumed. It’s a bit discouraging that the “if every day were like this” feature on my fitness app says, “You’d weigh 3.2 pounds less than you do now,” but I’m reminding myself that this cleanse isn’t about weight loss, it’s about cleansing. It’s about giving my body a break from the processed and bad-for-me foods I love to consume. (I may or may not have eaten two sleeves of double-stuffed Oreos on Saturday. They were delicious, but all the while I knew all that processed cream was going to make me pay!)

I have a little less than an hour to my next juice. I’m a two on the hunger scale…not starving by any means, but want to eat. It may just be the fact that I am thinking about food right now (and that those Reece’s Cups are calling out to me LIKE A BULLHORN).

3:20p: I chugged another 8oz water. It is about time for Juice 4. At this point it’s a process of elimination. I think I want the almond milk as my last drink of the day. So that leaves “snap.” and “whoa.” They have apple, carrot, ginger and beets, apple, kale, ginger–respectively. Since I just had carrot, I think I’m gonna do “whoa.” I’m a little nervous about the flavor because when I ordered the cleanse the owner asked if I wanted to do any substitutions. I said no since I wasn’t sure what any of them tasted like and asked what she thought. She said, “If you don’t like beets, you probably won’t like the beet one.” I don’t know if I like beets, so we will see.

3:30p: Just poured my beet juice. This one smells like a salad too, and it is beet colored…definitely don’t want to spill this on yourself. After the smell, I’m having to pump myself up to taste because I know the kale flavor is there.

It’s a smooth flavor, but my face subconsciously wrinkled after the first sip. There don’t appear to be any residual floating kale pieces in it, and like I said it is smooth in the mouth, but earthily layered like the other kale one. I don’t think I taste beets, but that’s probably because I don’t know what beets taste like right off.

I’ve been storing these in a cooler so its not as cold as it could be, and that might help some. A good note for tomorrow.

I’m doing ok staying in a positive head space, I did just walk the mall and walk past an Auntie Anne’s Pretzels sample…one of my favorite things. That’s another thing this cleanse is about for me…will power…and showing myself that I can put my mind to something and stick with it. Three days isn’t that long–18 juices and 9 bottles of water–I just have 14 unopened juices (plus this one in my cup) and seven bottles of water to go. No problem…

Just finished the beet. I don’t NOT like it, it just makes my face wrinkle. You can certainly tell there is no sugar in these. The flavor IS sweet, but not in a “normal” juice way. You know you’re drinking your vegetables.

There were some dregs at the bottom of my glass on this one, like the last kale one, but I’m pretty sure they were beet pieces. My next juice is at 6p when I’m home. Then the last one at 8:30p. Maybe I should start earlier tomorrow or shorten the schedule to every two hours. I haven’t felt starved all day. I’m also not bloated. My pants are loose (but that’s because they’re a size too big). I’ll make a better effort to put myself together tomorrow :).

5:30p: Time for juice number five. If you’ve been following along, you know it’s apple, carrot, ginger.

This one is orange and you can certainly smell the ginger. You can taste the carrot, but the apple is a subtle aftertaste.

As I suspected, this is my second favorite juice so far today. After this is gone, I just have the almond milk and I’m through day one.

Again, I haven’t been hungry all day, it just hasn’t been super enjoyable. The juices taste fine overall, but I’ve been keenly aware that I’m not eating things I normally would. As I drink this juice (I like this one), I’m aware that Bub will start his scavenging challenge today for dinner since I won’t be cooking.

I’m also stockpiling things to do after I walk the dog around the neighborhood: unload and load the dishwasher, hang my laundry, upload this blog, maybe paint my nails…to help pass the time that I would normally spend munching in front of the tv.

Should I be “savoring” the juices more? I drank two today pretty normally, but the rest I’ve sort of chugged. Is that right? I’m also wondering if the residuals in my glass are because I froze the juice and then thawed and drank it or if that’s the general nature of fresh pressed juice. Any insight there would be appreciated.

Juice number five finished and I’m off to walk the dog. I moved my alarm for my last juice to 7:30p so I can have some time to “digest” before bed so I’m not getting up 100 more times than I normally do.

6:30p: It’s dinner time for the hubs. I walked the dog, put away my laundry and watched an episode of Real Housewives (OC). I tried to stay upstairs while he was cooking but the sweet smell of toast lured me downstairs. While I’m cleansing, he’s on a three-day scavenger challenge. I have my next juice in a little less than a hour.

7:30p: Time for the last juice, which is actually an almond milk. Had my last 8oz water then tried the milk. It’s good…think thinner version of BlueDiamond unsweetened almond milk. I heated mine in the microwave for about a minute and added a little bit of honey and cinnamon. I know that’s “off cleanse,” but I feel like it’s ok.

I’m finished with today and feel ok. I’m not hungry, actually kind of full. I don’t feel tired or anything, but also not super energetic.

I know this was a long post, tomorrow will probably be a little shorter, but thanks for checking in. Stay tuned for day two!

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Vegetarian Wednesday!


In my continued effort to workout more regularly and eat more cleanly, we had a vegetarian meal tonight. After I did a quick run and the gym and Bub exercised at home, we had a dinner of portobello mushrooms, sweet potato fries and broccoli.

This is the recipe I used for the mushrooms. EXCEPT I didn’t put them on a bun or accent them with lettuce and tomato. I did sprinkle them with balsamic and top with blue cheese and the sauce (recipe at the bottom of the above link). EXCEPT I added about a tablespoon of honey to the sauce and used dried parsley instead of fresh (about 1 tsp).

I used this recipe for the sweet potato fries, and it was AH.MAH.ZING. So good I wish I’d made more than just one potato’s worth of them…even though I did split the leftovers between two lunches.

The broccoli was just steamed and topped with olive oil and sea salt. I did it in my 50-year-old, mustard yellow, Tupperware microwaveable steamer…which almost met its death tonight because I accidentally set it on a hot stove eye. Luckily, I caught it in time and it wasn’t ruined, just scarred. (Mom, you know the severity of this…haha.) If you don’t have one of these, get one…you NEED it!

20130123-194225.jpg This is what mine looks like…it’s the best ever!

I was still a little hungry after dinner so I had some whole wheat toast with almond butter on it (and a little peanut butter because my almond stuff wouldn’t spread very well).

Overall, a great dinner to top off a great day that included lunch with my old friend Dwight at Gourmet Market where I had a “Fake Steak” sandwich (made with portobellos). 🙂

Now that I’ve regained you with my meal plan today…I’m off and looking forward to a rest day tomorrow (finally) as I’ve been in the gym or in a class everyday since LAST Sunday (10 days i a row with six days in a row before that I think)…go me! Adios!

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Dinner Menu Follow Up: Chicken Parm


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Tonight we had chicken Parmesan…and it was good. Made better because Sous Chef Bub helped by getting everything on the stove and into the oven so we could eat at a reasonable hour since my barre class didn’t end until 6:45.

I recommend making your own marinara (see blog post from Sunday) for this. It had a great flavor and was so easy to make…and that was even better.

My dinner (pictured) was served with a cucumber “salad” (read: chopped cucumber) with maple balsamic and honey mustard dressing, and whole wheat spaghetti noodles topped with butter (just a little) and Parmesan cheese. Bub had his sans cucumbers (he hates them).

The chicken parm was good, and light, and tasted wonderful after my very hot and hard barre class. Woo hoo. Also, two days in…two days in the gym. In my 28 day challenge to work out at least six times a week for four weeks I’m 9 days in with 8 days in the gym or studio (one Sunday rest day). Go team!

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Dinner Menu Follow Up: Turkey Stuffed Peppers


20130114-193410.jpg This is how my turkey stuffed peppers turned out! I even ate most of half of mine! 🙂 I served this up with a big green leaf and spinach salad topped with almonds and a sprinkle of Mexican cheese. We used Ken’s Light Honey Mustard dressing (and I threw on a little drizzle of Maple Balsamic for flare). We sliced an apple for dessert!

We also both worked out today! Go us!

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#28toGreat and Clean Cooking


In this new year, I didn’t make any resolutions per se…I am just trying to do some things that have always alluded me and some things to better my overall well being.

Bub got me Rosetta Stone for Christmas (as you read in a previous post) and I’d like to get through that…I’ve started a 28 day fitness challenge with Barre3, though I’ve had to adapt it a bit to fit my “free time” and have it better align with previous commitments. As part of that challenge, I’m also trying to eat clean(er) by cooking with fresh(er) products and less processed foods.

28 to Great is a challenge to take 6 barre classes a week for four weeks (either online or in studio). It started Monday, so I took class Monday, Thursday and Saturday and did an online class Wednesday morning. I didn’t quite hit my six classes in the first week, but, as I said, I’m adapting it to fit my schedule. I also work with a personal trainer once a week, so I’m kind of counting that. Either way, I was in the gym (or studio) six times this week with six times schedule for next week.

Part of the 28toGreat challenge is also to work on your eating habits. They provide meal plan suggestions and workout schedule suggestions…it’s a pretty good motivator. Last week, our meals didn’t turn out wonderfully…we had some great sides, but some not so great main courses. I think this is because I followed the recipes too literally and didn’t venture off any way I normally would.

This week, we are trying again. Here’s what my kitchen looks like on Sunday Prep Day.

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Yes..I use EVERY utensil I can get my hands on on Sunday Prep Day!

Here is a photo of all that is simmering on the stove for our menu this week. Is your mouth watering? Are you dying to know? if you could smell what I am smelling, you would be!

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In the photo above, on the left we have the ground turkey mix for stuffed peppers in the back and mixed basmati rice in the front.  On the right rear we have a marinara sauce and in the front, the harvest lentil soup. Recipes below (except for the rice…it’s just basmati rice and I followed the instructions on the back).

Tonight (Sunday), we are having Harvest Lentil Soup (it’s a recipe from the 28toGreat barre3 meal suggestion). We are pairing this with two tiny loafs of Kroger’s bakery-made french bread.

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Tomorrow, I’ll have this Get-Up-And-Go Smoothie for breakfast (also from the 28toGreat baree3 meal suggestions)…flaxseed, prunes and all. I made it yesterday and have two servings chilling in the fridge for this week.

We’ll have Turkey Stuffed Peppers from Skinnytaste.com and salad for lunch on Monday.

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I do not like peppers, really of any kind, but I really.REALLY like the idea of stuffed peppers. So we are trying them out…I figure that Bub will love them, and I can at least scoop the tasty stuff out of the middle. Right? Maybe I’ll even develop a liking for them. One can hope.

Tuesday, we are having Baked Chicken Parmesan with whole wheat spaghetti (also from Skinnytaste.com) and salad.

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For this chicken Parmesan, I made my own simple marinara sauce and cut and breaded the chicken, so all we’ll have to do is top it with sauce and cheese and bake it.

Wednesday, we’re having salmon in creamy dill sauce with rice and peas, and carrots.

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The carrots will be cooked in the oven at 400 degrees about 20 minutes (drizzled with olive oil and a little salt and pepper). While that’s happening, I’ll be mixing olive oil (approx. 2 Tbs), honey (approx. 3 Tbs) and balsamic vinegar (approx. 1 tsp). I’ll pull the carrots out, drizzle them with this mix, stir them around a bit, and pop them back in the oven for about five more minutes.

I’ll eat leftovers for lunch all week and probably smoothies for breakfast. Or…some of the delicious mango-cherry-maple granola my husband made today on top of a little yogurt. I know I’ll be drinking fruit infused water (got this great sample product from work that has a chamber I can stuff with any fruit/veggie combo…cantaloupe/cucumber, lemon/blackberries, peach, etc.) and probably having some YoNanas* for dessert.

*YoNanas is a food processor that takes frozen fruit (with a banana base) and basically turns it into frozen yogurt. It’s AH.MAH.ZING. If you don’t have one, you should get it…only $50 at Bed, Bath and Beyond, FYI.

The Sunday prep day is exhausting, as I’ve said before, but it is WONDERFUL to come home from a workout and already basically have the hard stuff done. The way I have it set up now is that Bub can do the remainder of the meal for me if I’m running late…boiling the noodles, turning on the crock pot at lunch, topping the chicken with sauce and cheese, etc. It’s makes for great tag-team efforts where dinner is concerned. 🙂 Also, because I don’t usually train until about 5:30p and my barre classes don’t start until 5:45p, this means we can still have a nice dinner without eating too late.

Last week’s clean eating, even though the meals were a bit of a flop, worked out pretty well. I saw some weight gain throughout the week (muscle I’m hoping), and, even with the cake from my cousin Russell’s wedding last night and our Indian food date night on Friday (at Bombay Palace in Turkey Creek–you have to try it), I was down this morning. So that’s a bonus! Bub says he’s feeling better, too!

Here’s hoping I can keep focused this week. Good luck to you with all your resolutions.

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