Chicken and Rice

Chicken and Rice

I’m ready for the Spring and Summer…they can come along anytime  now! I think this has been the snowiest winter that I’ve experienced since moving to Ohio, which was  nice at first, but I think I’m over it. Since it’s been so cold and snowy – one thing’s been on my mind: soup!

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Stir CrAzY!

Caramel CornI woke up too early today…that seems to happen a lot on Saturdays. I really tried to sleep in and go back to sleep, but that didn’t seem to work. So I got moving at 6:30. Ugh. While doing my chores and cooking for next week (I mean…what else should I do this early in the morning if I can’t sleep), Alisa let me know that Hip Hop was cancelled because of the snow-pocalypse! [Don DON dooonnnnn!]

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How I got here: Part 7

Continued from prior post…

Before and After - Late 2010 to Early 2014And here’s where I stand today. I’ve now returned to a much healthier weight, feel better than I have in a long time, and truly enjoy my life! Now that the weight is off; however, maintenance will be my next battle. I’ve fallen short here before, but I think I’ve not only built strong tools to help me get there, but I’ve also got a strong support system with my friends and family! Continue reading “How I got here: Part 7”

How I got here: Part 6

Continued from a prior post…

HHF-OrangeIt was time to take my life back – and – I embraced it head on. In early April, I bought a new pair of running shoes, mapped out an exercise plan that had me doing cardio two days a week and weights three days a week through the ChaLEAN Extreme DVDs. I also stepped on the scale and faced the fact that I’d gained about 20 lb. Not good – but I knew I could could get it off (again). After a few weeks of this new plan, I was already feeling better – and – bringing my hours at work back to the low 60’s helped my stress levels significantly. Continue reading “How I got here: Part 6”

Beefy Goodness: Barbacoa!

IMG_0861I. Love. Chipotle. The whole concept – and – the fact that they use high quality ingredients makes the trip (albeit only two minutes from my apartment) worthwhile. The Barbacoa beef is my absolute favorite, so I decided to try and make my own! I found an awesome looking recipe on PaleOMG – and – it was a crockpot recipe, which is a double win! Instead of eating this with rice or in a salad, I decided to stuff into into bell peppers and top with avocado and salsa. The best part: I was able to break this down into 12 meals! I simply portioned the beef and popped it in the freezer!

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» Add to Your ZipList. Note: This is PaleOMG’s direct recipe without my modifications.

How I got here: Part 5

Continued from a prior post…Skylar

Since I couldn’t exercise, I knew I could and should do something to improve my health. By this time I’d also had two sinus infections on top of my mono and strep, so I was done being sick! Fortunately, some good friends at work (who also recently got engaged and make an adorable couple) who also happened to be my smoking buddies had recently quit smoking. One of them actually smoked a lot more than I ever did, and so I figured if they could do it – I could!

I’d tried quitting with the patch, the gum, and the electronic cigarette a few times before, and I was never successful. But I stuck with my conscience and made a quick, brash decision to try and quit again. I wasn’t sure if this spur of the moment decision would be a good idea, but I figured it was as good a time as any. Following their lead, I bought an inexpensive electronic cigarette as my main crutch – and – I also bought the lowest level of the nicotine patches. Just to be clear, I do not recommend trying this on your own – I probably could have done some serious damage trying both, so you should talk to your doctor first.  In addition to the crutches, I also gave myself a clear reward if I met my goal: a dog!

My family always had a dog when I was growing up. But my old roommate was allergic to most pets and didn’t really want a dog, so I went without when I moved to Ohio. Having this clear reward (that wasn’t tied to food, mind you) was a great incentive. Quitting smoking wasn’t an easy task and I’m sure I bit a few people’s heads off at work (although – I also had a warning sign on my cube), but after two weeks I was ready to give up the patch and just use the electronic cigarette. Another two weeks later, I was crutch free! The cravings still came, especially when I got stressed, so I used strong mints like Altoids and simply chewed them (yes – it’s intense) to get through the craving. It was simply amazing that I’d finally given up this habit, so I was absolutely thrilled with myself – but – I was much more excited about the dog.

After searching for a few weeks, I stumbled upon the picture in this post, and I knew he’d be the one for me – at least I hoped so! I went to the shelter that had him and took him for a quick walk and some play time. Yup! He was the one! After the adoption paperwork was completed, the calls to my references made, and the supplies bought – he was mine! He’s simply been one of the best things I’ve given myself – and – he’s kept me accountable for not smoking. I know I can’t afford to smoke and keep the dog, so if I ever start smoking again, I’d have to give up the dog – and that’s not happening anytime soon!

In April, all of my project work was finally over – so I started to process of taking my life back.

To be continued…

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