Wednesday, October 30, 2013

I Won My Dietbet and Trader Joe Cookie Butter Alternative!

Woooo I am happy to say that as of today I officially won my Dietbet. All those moments of stress and scale obsession payed off. As sad as that sounds I am excited that I won. I mean who wants to lose money? Not me!!  I am happy that I succeeded. For one, that means I lost 10 pounds this month which is a great thing and I am very proud of myself for that. For two, it means that I can put my scale up for a while and just focus on my changes elsewhere like my measurements, eating habits, how many reps of exercises I can do , and am not always just thinking “scale number, scale number, scale number.”  Like I said I don’t think I will do another one for a while but we will see. The concept intrigued a lot of my friends and if doing it with them will motivate then I may consider it but it was a bit mentally draining for me. With winning this Dietbet it also meant that for the first time in a long time I was under 200 pounds. That is crazy to me! 

Woohoo my body 20 pounds lighter! I am so happy to be able to look in the mirror and see the difference finally. It is so much more motivating when you can see the changes you are making!!

Also being that the end of the month is coming that also means my Tone It Up Frisky Fall Challenge is coming to a close as well as my Betty Rocker Rocktober Challenge. I honestly loved both. While integrating both challenges together I saw a huge change in my body both in endurance and strength. I loved the gradual difficulty increase of the Betty Rocker workouts and loved seeing my body get stronger and better at each of the workouts. It also gave me a lot of new body strength exercises that I can do anywhere. I loved that the Tone It Up workouts gave me a set schedule of what to do each week and allowed me to never get bored. There was a nice mix of cardio, strength training, stretching, etc… Videos each week included new ones you hadn’t seen before which made things exciting and it gave me a lot of great cardio options like interval training and stair workouts! I can’t wait for either of these ladies to do another challenge and most definatley will sign up for them in the future.

New Discovery That I Wish Had Gone Unfound….

So since my wondrous discovery of the Trader Joe Cookie Butter which I wrote about (here) I have found myself longing for it. That rich, creamy, sweet gingerbread taste is missing from my life now and I do not know how to go on without it. I do not live anywhere close to Trader Joes and buying  Cookie Butter online is obnoxious. It is extremely overpriced and I just could not shell out $15-20 a jar for the stuff. In a desperation to find an alternative I googled recipes on how to make my own and found that was no easy task either. Buying the cookies to make it would cost almost as much as just buying it online so I decided to look at another route and see if I could find a brand that made something similar. Well I sure did and I feel complete again. Now I do not know that this discovery is a good thing because that means that I can get this stuff anytime I want and seeing as how it is my version of crack this could lead to bad bad things. I discovered that a brand called Biscoff Spread which is made by a company named Lotus is almost an exact dupe of Cookie Butter. Like Cookie Butter is comes in crunchy and creamy and is made with a similar biscuit. It is from Europe but you can buy it in many places in the US. I found mine in good ol’ Walmart in the peanut butter sections. It is fairly priced between $3.50- $3.75 at my Walmart which is about the same price point as Cookie Butter. The jar is a bit smaller in the crunchy style which is too bad since that is my favorite. I honestly didn't notice a difference between TJ’s and Biscoff. They both have a delicious gingerbread flavor which around the same amount of nutritional value. 

Monday, October 28, 2013

Hectic Halloween and Healthy Fall Snacks!

Woohoo it is Halloween week!! Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. I love all the decorations and dressing up. I love carving pumpkins and handing out candy to trick or treaters. As I got older and reached the drinking age Halloween also enjoyed going out with my friends to the bars with our Halloween costumes on. With as much as I love Halloween it was also a time of year that really got me down. Costume shopping was always a dreaded experience. All of my friends would get these cute little skimpy outfits and I would be the one wearing a frock. Now I never wanted to prance around town in a bikini but I always wanted to look better in a costume. To at least be able to find something cute!

This year is the first Halloween in years where I put on my Halloween costume and felt great. Now I know I have a lot left to do and there is still a lot of work to be done but this was a small milestone for me. A milestone that made me go "woooo I can do this after all." I was going through my phone and looking at some pictures from a couple months ago and it finally hit me how far I have come already. Seeing the difference in my photo's was really rewarding. It makes me want to keep going and keep succeeding.

This weekend was full of Halloween fun. Friday night I worked a Halloween party for work. I am a bartender and we had bands play and there was a costume contest. It was a lot of fun! I had such a confidence boost that night! Saturday I went to a costume contest with my family. We had been constructing the costumes for a long time and had hours and hours of work put into them. We all made minions!!! We won the contest and had soooo much fun. I did have a couple beers but didn't go overboard. Plus with as hot as the heads were I think I sweated out most of them.


Today was a pretty relaxing day around the house for the boyfriend and I! We rarely get time off together so we took advantage of it and spent the afternoon watching movies and relaxing. I told him though that he had a couple options 1)Go to the gym 2)Go for a trail run or 3) Do an at home workout with me. He chose option 3 and let me tell ya he worked his butt off but so did I. Since he is just getting back in to being active I picked something that would be challenging and fun for the two of us.
It was a really fun workout and we were covered in sweat by the end. I love when he joins me in a workout but it doesn't happen too often!


Breakfast: Yoplait Light Harvest Peach Yogurt and a banana.

Lunch: A good ol' PB&J with a twist. Bimbo Whole Grain White Bread with Fit and Active Strawberry Jelly and the Jif Whipped Peanut Butter. 

Dinner: I made a slimmed down version of our favorite meal...Chicken Broccoli Alfredo! I used Priano Light Alfredo sauce from Aldis. I also cooked some chicken breasts lightly in garlic infused olive oil. We used Organic Whole Wheat Shells and I added steamed broccoli to mine! It was soooo good.

Snacks: Zach had a craving for popcorn so we made some all natural popcorn. Literally we took it off a dried corn cob. It was delicious! For dessert I ate a Weight Watchers Ice Cream Candy Bar.

I also put together some Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal for breakfast for the next couple days. I found the recipe here and it came out pretty awesome! I had home made applesauce that my mom made and apples from her trees and it made it even that much better. I also prepped some chicken for the week since the oven was already on.

I am looking forward to what this week has in store. It is the end of my Dietbet...eek!!! As of this morning my goal was met so I am confident when I weigh in on Wednesday I will be on point. Now to decide what challenge to do next. I like having a challenge and having something to look forward to. I am a competitive spirit and like trying to bet a goal. I was looking into a challenge via. GNC today so I may do that one.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Scale Obsession, Arctic Zero Review, and Other Thoughts!

Hey hey there everyone. I hope everyone is doing well! It is a chilly day here in upstate NY. The temperature is finally reflecting fall like weather and we even got some of the dreaded S word yesterday....snow! It was brief but just seeing it made my heart sink a little. Just when I was beginning to love working out outside the cold begins to move in.

The last couple days have been kind of hectic and busy but they have been so much fun. Halloween is just around the corner and for my family it is a big deal. Saturday night we have a huge Halloween party to go to and have been slaving away making out costumes. I cannot tell you what they are yet but I will post pictures after the party is over.

Also one of my great friends is in town from Georgia so we had a get together at our house for him yesterday. Now while I didn't do horribly on my diet I didn't do the best either. I whipped up some chili yesterday morning for the crock pot! I made it based on the Cooking Light recipe for All American Chili and it came out amazing. To check out that recipe click here! The only changes I made were that I used the Jenny O Italian Seasoned Ground Turkey as my meat and I also added a can of chili beans in chili sauce. It came out amazing and got rave reviews. There wasn't a spoonful left by the end of the night. I should have taken more pictures of my spread. It was a nice mix of healthy snacks. I put out the Nature Box Teriyaki Twists and Caramel Pretzel Pops which everyone loved. I am also set out Dilly Beans and Salsa that my friend and I canned from scratch this year. We had a bonfire and a few drinks. It was a great time.
Unfortunatley my Dietbet is now in it's last week and I am still 2 pounds away from being in the winning so I really need to crack down on my diet and exercise this week. I am going to try and do no carb/low carb this week with a lot of water and focus mostly on cardio. I have talked before about why I do not think I will do a Dietbet again for a while and this morning solidified that decision. I feel like the Dietbet challenge has made me a bit too obsessed with scale. Since the challenge is based only on weight loss and no other gains I feel like I am constantly checking/panicking about the number on the scale. I think after this is over I will put the scale up for a bit and let the measurements tell me how I am doing.

Yum Or Not? Arctic Zero Ice Cream Review

If there is one thing that has been really hard to cut out of my diet it is ice cream. I am an ice cream hound! Before I started eating healthier it would not be uncommon for Zach and I to go through a half gallon of ice cream in a matter of days. Though I am craving sweets less and less as the days go by I still cannot stop thinking about ice cream late at night. Once 11pm hits I just want to be mowing down Ben N Jerrys but alas my butt, thighs, and stomach do not like that very much. Over the last couple months I have been seeing this brand of ice cream all over Instagram. With only 150 calories per pint and flavors like Vanilla Maple, I knew I had to find it. Tonight I finally did at Walmart. There are 7 flavors in the line but my Walmart only carried Vanilla Maple, Chocolate, and Chocolate Peanut Butter. I need to get my hands on the Coffee Flavor asap! 

I went with the Vanilla Maple flavor since that was the one that originally caught my eye when I found the brand. As you can see clearly it is 150 calories per pint or 35 calories per serving which is quite awesome. 
As you can see the nutritional information is not bad at all. 5g of sugar per serving for ice cream is exceptional and I like that you get some fiber in this as well which a lot of ice creams don't have. This will not be a good source of calcium but that is alright with me. 


Those are the ingredients which are not bad at all either. From looking at just the nutritional values and the ingredient list I was already a fan. Let's explore the rest of this....

Price: At $5 I will say that the price is a bit steep. Most ice creams are not even $5 for a whole half gallon so paying $5 for a pint made me cringe a bit. However, I would rather pay a bit more and save myself a lot of unnecessary calories! I do think that at the price this will be more of an indulgence item and not a staple in my freezer. 

Flavor/Texture: Since the main ingredient is water this frozen treat does have a bit of an icy texture. It is along the lines of a sorbet. It does not have a creamy texture that you are used to. It is not as icy as shaved ice or a slurpee. If you have eaten sorbet or one of those F'real shakes, that is what the texture most similarly resembles to me. Flavor wise it was not all that bad. Now it in no way compares to eating an actual bowl of Maple Nut ice cream but it could suffice as a substitute in times of sweet tooth need. It had a nice mapley flavor and was perfectly sweet. I will say however, that it had a similar after taste to sugar free ice cream. Since I am used to using stevia and other artificial sweeteners this didn't both me so much but it could bother others. I think this flavor would be awesome with apple pie!!

Overall, it was good but I wasn't overly wowed by it. I don't think it is the greatest ice cream innovation but it did curb my ice cream craving.  I really want to try some other flavors and see how they compare. 

Food and Fitness Today:

Breakfast: I made a delicious omelet for breakfast this morning. I got a huge bag of Kale Greens from Walmart the other day for $2.88 which I thought was a pretty decent price. Zach and I are new to using Kale but already love it. I sauteed up a handful of Kale in some olive oil and then added onions. I let those cook for a bit before adding Fit and Active Liquid Egg Whites and a splash of the Fit and Active Egg Substitute. I also added some smoked ham and light feta cheese. It was delicious!!! I licked the plate clean. I also ate a banana. 

Lunch: After the gym I was starving and knew it would be a while before I ate dinner so I stopped into the market to grab something quick for lunch. I decided on a Chef Salad without the croutons,egg, or bacon. I pretty much just kept the turkey, ham, and a small cup of shredded cheese. I bought a bottom of Light Ceasar and topped it with that. I also bought a fresh fruit mix that had cantaloupe, strawberries, honeydew, pineapple, and watermelon which I ate in the car. 

Dinner: I had to pick Zach up dinner at Taco Bell and for the sake of not driving all over in the pouring rain I caved and got Taco Bell for myself. I went with 2 Chicken Fresca Soft Tacos

Snack: Arctic Zone Vanilla Maple Ice Cream and a Cream Cheese Brownie. (I know I know but Zach made them haha)! 


I did 50 minutes on the ABX trainer! 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Back To The Grind...Food and Fitness Journal October 21, 2013

Well as I posted this morning today was the start of a more determined and more controlled diet and fitness regiment. I let myself slack a lot last week and really needed to reel myself back in. I will make this post pretty short and sweet since it is 1am!

Breakfast- Better Oats Oat Fit Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal. I added extra cinnamon and had an apple from my parents apple trees. I love these oatmeal packets. They are so easy to make and are great for tossing in a lunchbox or work bag. I also like that the package is also a measuring cup! I think I have about 5 flavors in my cupboard right now.

Lunch- A Skinny Selections Spinach and Garlic Chicken Sausage! I love these and did a quick review on them here! I also had a side salad from Wendy's with Light Ranch dressing. 

Dinner- 2 more chicken sausages with mixed vegetables. 

Snacks- Nature Box Chia Seed Crackers, a golden delicious apple, and Yoplait Banana Cream Pie Light Yogurt. All delicious and nutritious.  


I went to the gym with a friend tonight. I did 15 minutes on the personal trainer setting on the elliptical but it was bothering my hip a bit tonight so I switched to the ABX trainer and finished up another 25 minutes on there. I did a total of 4 miles towards my #100byhalloween challenge which puts me at 52. I did both of the arm workouts that were on my weekly schedule for the #FriskyFall challenge! Not sure what that is? (click here) and to check out the schedule this week (click here)

I also did a cardio workout from CafĂ© Mom’s YouTube channel. Though I am not a mom I still liked this workout. I need to focus a lot on cardio these next couple weeks and didn’t want to go to the gym so I opted for this instead. It was a pretty good little workout and I did some sweating. I did this before work. 

All and all a very successful day and well on my way to a better week....weeks!!!

Talking To Myself and Avoiding Temptations...Love With Food Box Review Cont'd...

Hey hey there everyone! It is another beautiful fall day in upstate NY and I am feeling energized. It is finally getting cold up here so that part I do not love. We got blessed with  a couple extra weeks of strangely warm weather…for NY anyway! However, now I think that it is officially starting to head towards winter. Womp womp!!!

I had to do some serious refocusing this morning because my diet and exercise regimen went off the tracks this weekend. Seriously, it derailed in a river and sank!  I am still trying to get a hold on how to be social without ruining my willpower. I went out with some friends on Friday night to watch another friends show. He plays guitar and is awesome. I did really well with avoiding food temptations but I couldn’t say no to a couple a couple beers. I didn’t drink in excess or anything but I should have said no and didn’t. Saturday I did pretty well but yesterday was HORRIBLE. I was like a junk food Pac-man. I couldn’t stop! Half the problem was that I was at my mother’s which tends to make any diet go downhill but I could have made healthier choices everywhere! I ate donuts from the cider mill-FAIL, Wendy’s for lunch-FAIL (granted I didn’t get my usual frosty and pile of nuggets. I went with the Grilled Chicken Sandwich and a side salad but it still isn’t good), dinner was spaghetti at my mom’s (we ate early and were doing a bunch of work so by the time we got home Zach and I were starving), dinner #2 Pizza Hut Thin N’Crispy Pepperoni Pizza with breadsticks-FAIL, and lastly dessert was this Hershey’s Cream Pie-FAIL FAIL FAIL FAIL…. Yesterday just makes me hang my head in shame.

So this morning I woke up and said “Listen Staci, you are better than this. You want this and you will do better. Learn to say no and make these next two weeks amazing.” With my challenges coming to an end in the next 2 weeks I really can’t lose my focus. I not only want to be healthier and see my change but I want to win haha! It is time to put my Avoiding Temptation pants on and really get serious about this. I know it is going to be a tough one since Halloween is coming up and it is one of my favorite holiday’s but I am going to have to suck it up and do it. No turning back now!!!

Goals This Week:
·        Do not give in to temptations! Yes those pumpkin rolls and pastas look and smell delicious but they are what got you here in the first place.
·        Make time to workout and stick to my Challenge schedules.
·        Drink more water! This is always a goal because I am terrible at it.
·        Wake up and refocus on what you need to do. Do a little yoga and stretch and put your mind in the right place

I really need to make sure I read those goals every day! I also want to make a dream board! I have all the stuff to do it. I just need to find the time to sit down and make it happen!

Love With Food Review Con’t:
Did you guys check out my love with food box review? If you didn’t (click here) to check it out. It is a pretty awesome little box that I already realllly like. There were a bunch of things in the box that I had not tried yet when I wrote the post and I have now had a change to try more of the products with the exception of the apple vinegar pearls. Here are my thoughts on the rest of the things I got:
11)      Kind Fruit and Nut Mini Bar- Delicious!! I loved it just as much as all the others I tried. It was crunchy, chewy, sweet, and so delicious. I loved the big chunks of real fruit and whole nuts. You can just see how good it will be for you. I originally thought the size was small but it was actually perfect. I think these will be great for right before a workout or a little snack to tide you over till lunch in the morning.
22)      Pizzelle Crisps- I did not love these AT ALL! From previous run ins with similar products I knew that these would probably not be my favorite. I love pizzelles when they are homemade or the plain ones but I have yet to find a chocolate one that I like. These had the same problem as the Nature Box ones did for me and that is that they taste burnt. It is like eating burnt cardboard and I ate about 3 before tossing the bag right in the garbage.
33)      Happy Squeeze Apple, Blueberry, and Purple Carrot Pounch- LOVED!! Both my boyfriend and I really liked this product. We are already trying to figure out where we can buy more of them. We ate it on the way to run some errands Friday morning as a little snack until it was lunchtime. It was so good! The texture is like applesauce but a little more liquid like. The flavor was also great with hints of apples and blueberry but with a bit of a tart after taste which we liked. It wasn’t overly sweet!
44)      Glee Gum- Was also really good. I gave it to Zach since he is a candy monster. I did try one piece though and it was good. Fruity and sweet but the flavor didn’t last very long.

I will eventually try the apple cider pearls but I want to figure out a good recipe to put them in!! If you want to check out Love With Food or sign up for a subscription click here

Well here is to a wonderful week full of progress! 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Love With Food Box October 2013 Pictures And Review!

I finally got my first Love With Food (LWF) box yesterday and I am so excited. I came across this company about a month ago and I was really excited to give it a try. It is a monthly subscription service just like NatureBox which I talked about in this post. Each month you receive a box with different product samples in it. Unlike NatureBox these are samples of products and not full size though some of the things I got this month were full size. It is $10 a month to subscribe but they do offer other payment packages that will save you a little bit of money. They also have a couple different boxes. Depending on which box you chose will determine how much it will be each month. Mine is the basic one which was the cheapest and I pay $10. click here to check out Love With Food. 
I was originally drawn to this box based on the type of products they send you. All the products are all natural and organic. You won't be receiving products packed with chemicals and over processed. I also liked that for each box you order the company donates one meal to a hungry child. After watching a documentary called A Place at the Table this was great news to me. If you have never seen that documentary click here to check out what it's all about. It is great and really brings the light to your eyes about the ever growing problem with poverty and hunger in this country. 

I loved that when I went to the website there was an interactive map that told you where meals were donated. One of the food banks was right in my back yard and that made me feel awesome. 

I was super pumped when my box came in the mail yesterday. I loved the cute little red box and I also liked that it was shrink wrapped so I knew nothing was able to get in it. 
The box was Halloween themed so I got this cute little card which I thought was a nice touch. On the back of the card was a list of products that were in the box and where you could purchase them. 

This was how my box looked when I opened it up. As you can see it was packed full of little goodies. 

I was really excited about the product on the top of the box. I am a joke. I love coconut anything. Cookies, water, milk, granola...if it is flavored like coconut I need to have it. I have seen coconut chips at TJ Maxx a couple times and for some reason just never bought them. I think I wasn't sure what they actually were but now that I know I am definitely going to have to pick some up when I see them again. This package was a full size package so I liked that. I also liked that there were only 115 calories per serving but this bag has 2 servings so I couldn't eat the whole thing in one sitting...DARN!! They have a very short ingredient list also including just Coconut, Cane Sugar, and Salt. These were delicious. Crunchy, buttery, and had a nice natural coconut flavor. I would say however that I don't like that there is added sugar and salt in these. I am wondering what coconut chips would taste like without that. It still isn't the worst snack in the world for you. I would love to try some of these on my oatmeal or on frozen yogurt. You can check out their other flavors by clicking here
I talked about my recent Kind bar discovery last week in this post! I was happy to see that they included one in this box because as of now I have only tried the one flavor which was Almond and Coconut (shocking!!) so I wanted to try more flavors. This one is Fruit & Nut Delight and was a mini size. I have been looking in to ordering more some kind bars online and saw that they has some assortments of mini Kind bars so I was happy to see just how mini they were. They are not very big so I would see these as being good for children. I haven't eaten it yet but when I do I will let you know what I think. I do like that it is all natural and non GMO, low glycemic, and has 2g of fiber in just this little guy. 
My next product was a fruit/veggie pouch by Happy Squeeze in Blueberry, Apple, and Purple Carrot. I am really excited to try this and so is Zach. He wanted to bust it open last night but I didn't want to waste it. I really like pouches like these and pick them up from time to time. They are easy to pack with you when you are on the go and are a convenient way to meet your daily fruit and vegetable needs in a more delicious way. This pouch in particular has a full 1/2 cup of fruit in it. It is organic and in a BPA free pouch which is always an added plus. 

The next product I got were Pizzelle Crisps in Chocolate. I am interested to see what these taste like. I got a similar product in my Naturebox and didn't like them at all. They were tasteless and I felt like I was chewing cardboard. These are organic as well and are only 100 calories per pouch.
I then got 2 of these Caveman Cookies which are a paleo diet based cookie. I tried one last night and it was delicious. It was chewy and moist with an almost sticky type consistency. It is not the fluffy dough like cookie that you are probably thinking of. It is more of a ground up granola bar. It had a nice sweet flavor that reminded me of molasses but with a hint of cranberry. I am sure I will end up ordering some of these. The ingredient list is wonderful and at 70 calories per cookie it makes more a nice little treat after dinner. You can check them out or order them here! I think I am going to look up some recipes too and see if it would be cheaper to whip some up on my own. 
This was the most perplexing product in the box. It is Gingras Pixo Pearls Apple Cider Vinegar Pearls. They come in this little pouch but unless you look really well at the package you can't even tell there is little clear pearls in there. You can read more about them here! There are many health benefits linked to apple cider vinegar. I try to use it in cooking and things every now and again. It suggests on the website that you add them to salads or canapes but I am not quite sure about them yet. 
The box also had candy in it. I am guessing it was due to Halloween!! I love me some candy so Trick-or-Treat Love With Food. I got a couple pieces of organic hard candy from Torie and Howard. I tried the pear and cinnamon one and it was amazing. I also got Triple Berry Glee Gum but I have them to Zach since I am not much of a gum chewer. 
Lastly in the box I got a couple coupons which are pretty spectacular as well. I got a coupon to enjoy a free Lean Cuisine Honestly Good Entree. I have been looking at these in the grocery store so I am glad I can try one for free. I also had a coupon for Glee Gum and Happy Squeeze! 

I love this box and am already excited for next month. It is like receiving a Christmas present once a month. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Cooking Up A Storm...Food and Fitness Journal October 15, 2013

I was a busy little bee yesterday there is no doubt about that. Since starting this new food and fitness journey that I am on I have been doing a lot of reading and researching about healthier food options. Learning what you should and shouldn't eat to lose weight can be quite overwhelming. There is such a vast array of information out there these days and there is so much controversy over what does and doesn't help you shed pounds. Not to mention there are a million different diet schemes out there as well. One thing is pretty consistent though no matter what you read... eat fresh/unprocessed/clean food is much better for you. I made a vow to myself when I started this that I would not go on a "diet." I vowed to truly teach myself how to eat well for the rest of my life. I didn't want to live off cabbage soup for 6 months because I knew that once I lost the weight I would be right back to where I started which was not knowing what good food was or how to make/eat it! I have been forcing myself out of my food comfort zone the past couple months but it has been a great journey so far. Now I know some of the food I eat is still processed with a long ingredient list but I am making so many changes.

So with that being said I have been trying to stock out fridge with as much fresh veggies, meat, fruit, I can. This also means that things don't last as long as they used to. I have to actually think about what needs to be used up in the morning and base my cooking off of what I have on hand. This morning there was quite a few things that were going to go bad if I didn't use them up so my meals for the day were based on those things.

Food Journal:

Breakfast: Cascadian Farms Chocolate O's Cereal. I know that sugary cereals are not good for you whether they are organic or not but I had already bought this box when I read the article on that so I am forcing myself to finish them up. Too bad because I like these a lot. They are sweet without being too sweet! I topped them with Silk Unsweetened Almond Milk. I recently switched to unsweetened after comparing the label of the regular sweetened vanilla almond milk to that of regular low fat milk. There wasn't much of a difference so I wasn't saving calories or sugar or fat and was spending a lot more. I like the unsweetened because the calories are a lot less while still giving you necessary calcium. It is also non GMO which is a huge benefit. I also had a cup of coffee with the Coffee Mate Caramel Machiatto Creamer. I don't drink coffee often but was in the mood this morning! It hit the spot.
Lunch: I heated up the rest of my dinner from Max's yesterday. I doctored it up with some fresh garlic, lemon juice, and onion powder and it tasted soooooo much better!

Dinner: After lunch I got busy dissecting the fridge. I threw out a bunch of things that needed to go for one reason or another and prioritized what needed to be cooked first. I had a container of brussel sprouts and some beet greens that were beginning to go so I decided to use those up.  I used this recipe for the brussel sprouts. I didn't have any chicken bullion cubes so I instead used low sodium chicken broth and they came out delicious.

I went by this recipe for the beet greens and they also turned out DELICIOUS!! I wish I could get fresh beets from the garden all year round because I love beet greens. I was so thankful that one of my lovely patrons at work brought me a big bag of them. Now to use the actual beets ha!

I cooked up a couple chicken breasts too. This will most likely be my dinner for tonight also because I made enough to last me a couple meals and it was sooo good yesterday!

Snacks: I ate a Dole Peach Crisp Cup. I wasn't very impressed! The after taste was weird and kind of chemically. It wasn't like a normal fruit cup like taste. I only had two in the cupboard and didn't want to throw them out despite knowing they are full of added sugar but I think the other one is going in the trash bin because they were not delicious at all. I also had an apple and a tbsp of the glorious Cookie Butter. If you don't know what Cookie Butter need to! Check out this post to hear about what it is.


Yet again it is another week of the #FriskyFall challenge. If you don't know what that is then click here! I got my workout schedule from Tone It Up and The Betty Rocker and made my workout schedule for the week. Yesterday was Cardio day so I did the workout below. I added weights and plyo moves to make it a little more challenging but it was a good workout. I also did my Betty Rocker Rocktober workout also. 
Have I mentioned how much I love Fitness Blender yet? 

I also woke up this morning one pound closer to winning my October Dietbet. So yesterday was a great day!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sometimes You Have To Cheat...Max's American Grill...Food and No Fitness Journal October 14, 2013

Hey hey there!! I know it has been a couple days since I wrote a post but weekends are hectic right now. I probably won't do weekend posts and might just do weekend wrap ups of some sort. This weekend was nothing exciting, just a bunch of work. I'm talking back to back 12+ hour shifts so it was nothing exciting. I didn't get much exercise in but did a yoga circuit and some stretching. No hard core workouts but after being on my feet and constantly on the go for days I figured that was enough and my body needed decent sleep. I stuck to my eating routine all weekend though so I think it balanced itself out.

My boyfriend Zach and I rarely get nights off together since both our work schedules are completely opposite so on the rare chance we have the same night off, we get very excited. We realized that we would both have Columbus Day night off a week or more a go so we made plans to go to dinner and the movies. I designated this night as my cheat night so I made sure to eat really well and get all my workouts in leading up to this. We chose to go to a place called Max's American Grill and Sports Bar. We had looked up the menu online and it seemed like a place we would really like. We love sports bars and hole in the wall restaurants and we had never even seen this place so that was our choice.

It was a nice atmosphere and a 50's style theme. Everything on the menu sounded delicious. We decided to get Wet Shoes for an appetizer which was french fries covered in chili, cheese, sour cream, and scallions. It was DELICIOUS. I liked that they used real chili with chunks of tomato and beans. We gobbled them up.
Next came the soup. I ordered Baked Potato Soup and Zach got the Chicken Noodle. This is where it starts to go downhill. The presentation was wonderful. Both of our cups looked delicious. Mine was topped with cheese, bacon, and scallions. However, when we tasted them they seemed really bland and watered down. I had to add a bunch of salt and pepper otherwise it tasted like a bunch of vegetables in water.  
Looks delicious right?

I ordered the Sicilian Shrimp and Scallops for my entree. I tried to order something that wasn't overly unhealthy and with the noodles being in an olive oil and garlic sauce I figured that would be a bit better than going with the alfredo sauce or a big cheeseburger. Yet again I ran into the same issue I had with the soup. It looked delicious but tasted really bland. The scallops were good but the shrimp was kind of chewy. I ate a couple bites and took the rest home. I figured I could doctor it up with a little more seasoning or something. 

I think if we were going to have some drinks and appetizers this would be a good spot but I don't think we will be going there for dinner again anytime soon.