Hellooo!!

My mom and I went to the Weight Watchers meeting last Monday, and we really liked it. The leader, Kathleen, had great energy as did the group, which was quite big! I really liked Kathleen, she lost 80 pounds and has kept it off for 6 years so far so I feel like she will be not only a great leader but a great resource! I weighed in at 166, but as it was 5:30 at night, I had just worked out and drunk a ton of water, and I was fully dressed that number didn’t bother me much.

I really found that I could still eat plenty and feel satisfied (which I wasn’t too concerned about honestly) but since WW has this new set up I get 29 points a day so I really just had to cut my portions a little bit. Plus I get extra points for working out which I do pretty much every day so I have anywhere from 3 to 11 extra points depending on if I do yoga or strength or kickboxing.

As it often is I knew I felt good but I had no idea if I lost weight. But I weighed myself yesterday morning as always and I was 158… which means I lost 2 pounds!!! Thank god!!! I won’t be totally happy until I see 150 but the scale is going in the right direction again so I am very pleased.

There were 2 meals worth mentioning this week…

First this beautiful work of art my mom and I made last week

Eggplant Lasagna, with homemade meat sauce (made with ground turkey). WE didn’t really have a recipe for this baby we just roasted some eggplant and then made a basic lasagna. And let me tell you it was TO DIE FOR!! And 1/6 was only 9 points! On the side we had roasted brussels sprouts which are only 1 point because of the oil and were also delish!

The second meal was another Cooking Light chicken recipe (don’t worry I got a new issue so there will be less chicken and more variety soon, this last issue was all about using chicken :P)

This time it was Tandoori Spiced Chicken (it might just look like yellow chicken but it tasted like sunshine! :P)

with my mom’s famous (at least to me) roasted cauliflower.

It’s just cauliflower roasted in a little bit of oil and some other stuff  (what I don’t know) but it tastes so yummy, like only something you mom makes can!

Today we made more of the lasagna and after WW we will have that (how can you not have fresh out of the oven lasagna!) I know I could show you what we had for dinner last night from CL (I lied  you’ll have to suffer through read about one more chicken recipe) but I’ll save it for next blog so I have something to talk about :P

I hope that everyone had a great weekend and President’s day if you live in the US. I <3 random holidays I get off from school for!

Peace!

Elli :)

So a while ago I got a request to do a blog about what I eat in a day. I’m sorry to say that it has taken me this long to get that blog up but it required remembering to take pictures of everything (I am prone to remembering I had to photograph something right after eating it), and then getting all those photos into a blog. But better late than never right? So here you go my day in food…

I start out pretty much everyday with the same breakfast (not that much has changed :P)

Now, however, breakfast starts out with an orange and a grapefruit, segmented, squeezed, and savored!

followed by…

Quinoa and light soy-milk with banana and applesauce to sweeten it, and pumpkin, cinnamon, ground cloves, ginger, and nutmeg and dried cranberries on top! I look forward to this everyday. It is so yummy and filling.

At school I have a mid-morning snack at about 8:30 to 9:00 ( I eat breakfast at about 6).

This is my favorite snack. they are 100 calories and have 6 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber and literally taste like a 3 musketeers bar only better.

Lunch is salad with turkey, broccoli, red pepper, tomatoes, and mango salsa (normally but not in this picture)

the dressing is just balsamic vinegar, olive oil, a little bit of agave syrup, salt, and pepper!

I also have some fruit, normally grapes, oranges, or apples and then either 100 calories of crackers ( I weigh out 100 calorie portions) or 100 calories of pretzels. Lunch is normally at 11:30.

When I get home from school at around 3 I have another snack

I start out with a VitaTop in one of many flavors, toasted.

The rest of my snack is an apple and some grapes with cottage cheese

I will also occasionally have a Baby Bel cheese and/or a Rye Vita Cracker if I get hungry again before I work out.

Dinner is often some kind of soup 

Or I also will have other things like frozen meals (there are some really great natural ones at my local super market) or an egg white omelette.

The biggest change in how I have been eating is that I used to always have toast or something with my soup and eggs and not I am not having that. For me a lot of those extra calories that were keeping me from losing weight came from carbs so by cutting out some of the carbs in my diet I have been losing weight better. I still have carbs but I try to avoid too may “dry carbs” hence the quinoa instead of cereal for breakfast, salad with some crackers or pretzels rather than a sandwich, and some rice in my soup instead of bread on the side.

Dessert is always a chocolate Vitatop or Vitamuffin :)

So there you go!

In other news this week I did a little bit too much snacking but nothing major. I gained .8 this week according to my frenemy the scale. I am not sure how much I really gained (if any though) because I did a boot camp at the place where I kick-box yesterday and am quite sore from that. And I know that when you are sore it’s from little tears in your muscles and that makes you retain water and on top of that I drank a ton of water yesterday. Maybe I am just making excuses but I do think that could be a factor because I feel like I look thinner. I am still going to work on not snacking so much this week though. Just taking it one day at a time.

On that note I cam to a little realization this week. I have been really frustrated with my weight especially today when I was hoping to see 153 (losing 1 pound) and instead say 155. I can still remember that feeling of seeing 151 and was frustrated that I am not there.  But I think I have to stop thinking about trying to get back there and just treat this not as losing recently gained weight and just as losing weight like normal. I can’t be impatient with myself. Again I am stuck in the past where I was a different weight instead of just focusing on where I am now. I have to forget that I once weighed 151 and just focus on what I weigh now. I’m not sure that makes sense like it does in my head but that is what I have been thinking…

I got frozen yogurt with my friend again Friday and that was so much fun. Afterwards we went to a coffee shop nearby and had tea and some cookies. It was so nice to just sit and chat with her again! We never see each other in school so its easy to forget how much we have in common. And not just that we both love purple but we have very similar views of the world. I can have conversations with her that I couldn’t have with just about anyone else I know, especially from school.

Speaking of school it is about to get really stressful… Midterms are the week after next, but this week is when all my classes that require an essay for the midterm are giving the essay. So I will have an english essay, a psych essay, and a history essay. I am not at all looking forward to them. They are just theses 3 big looming clouds that I can just see on the horizon and am totally dreading. I will study as best I can for them obviously but that doesn’t really make it less stressful.

To add to the stress I am taking the SATs next Saturday. I have been studying for the math section but that doesn’t do much to help my confidence. I am lucky that the college I most want to go to, Smith, doesn’t require SAT scores so if I bomb them I can just not send in the scores, and I can also take them again, but still 4 hours of testing is not something I think anyone looks forward too.. And then Midterms start that following Monday with my hardest day: AP Bio and AP Psych… ouch!!!

So that is what is going on in my life! Today my mom and I are going food shopping and I have a french project I should work on, I have to read the Miller’s Tale from the Canterbury Tales for english ( I loove them though so this won’t even be hard!), and I need to keep studying for the SATs! I also have to study for my history essay especially and read some of the psych textbook… thank goodness I have tomorrow off from school for Martin Luther King day.

I hope everyone has had a happy and delicious week! If the essays and SATs don’t kill me I will let you know how they go!

Elli :)

Hello Everyone!

This is going to be a very quick post. I don’t even have any pictures to share with you! I want to keep blogging on here but if I do expect there to be some changes since my life is so hectic! I probably will just blog here with some pictures if I have time. I also have a tumblr that is just random stuff that I like or from my life that is for the most part unrelated to food! you can find that here.

 

Just to update you all really quickly! My eating has changed a lot lately. I have been trying to limit my dry carbs, which means I haven’t been having sandwiches for lunch at school instead I bring a salad and a few crackers. Also instead of my beloved cereal (which surprisingly I don’t miss) I have quinoa with banana, and applesauce, and pumpkin… it basically tastes kind of pumpkin pie-y. I really love it!

I also have been weighing everything I really keeping a much closer eye on my portions sizes. by weighing everything every time I know that I am getting the intended amount of calories.

So are these new eating habits working? you might ask… YES!!! Since I started about 4 weeks ago I have lost 5 pounds! I lost 2.5 the first week, 2.5 the second, nothing the third, and then the fourth was this week and with Thanksgiving and all I was more than happy to stay the same! So I am now about 151 or 152!!! Its amazing to me that I am that close to the 140′s!!

School has been really tough for me this year. My classes are super hard and I don’t have many close friends so I don’t get to do much socializing. I really hate hating school, but lately at least I really have been. Hopefully life will improve soon though, because I turn 17 next Friday!!! That’s right people, pretty soon I’ll have to change the name of this blog to 17 and Losing It (or should I? What do you think?) Even more importantly I’ll be able to drive!! That means I (hopefully) will be able to drive to school, the gym, kickboxing, and wherever else I want. For example my back has been bothering me and I really wanted to see a chiropractor but couldn’t if my mom had to take me but once I have my driver’s license I will be able to go alone! Also I am going to try to find somewhere to volunteer a day or 2 a week to hopefully bring some happiness to my boring days.. :( I am so excited!! For my b-day my madre and I are going into Philly and eating at the Caribou Cafe which is a French bistro with apparently amazing French Onion Soup (which I just happen to be obsessed with!! So yeah… kinda excited for that.

Anyways… I would love to blog and blog but I have Bio to read (just like old times eh?). Hope that everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving!! And an early Happy Hanukkah to any Jews reading this!!

Elli :)

Ahhh the weekend! It seems so much more important and exciting during the school year! :P this weekend has not been all that exciting but I have enjoyed it just the same.

Friday I had a volleyball game that ended around 6:30 so I wasn’t home until almost 7. Phew! Talk about a long day!

Dinner that night was some super comforting oatmeal with strawberries

Just what a girl needs after a 12 hour day!

Saturday I got up bright and early and went to kickboxing form 8:30 to 9:30. I have never gone to this class because I didn’t think I could go and still go to the barn. I gave it a shot yesterday though and it worked out great! I’m so glad it did because that means I can start going to that class which will be really nice for 2 reasons

1) I love kickboxing and would rather go there than to the gym, although I have to keep up my running because I have a 10K in november!

2) It’s really nice to get my workout done by 9:30. It makes the day seem much more open to other things than when I go to the gym around 11 or 12.

Some people may be able to just have a small snack before they workout in the morning but I need real fuel in order to workout! Saturday that fuel was cereal and toast.

nom nom nom :)

Those funny little blueish things on there are freeze- dried blueberries! I found them at Trader Joe’s the other day and they are my new topping obsession! They taste just like blueberries but they are super crispy! Plus the whole bag is 120 calories!!!

After kickboxing, shower, and an hour out at the barn I was seriously ready for lunch in a big way.

I had a Green Monster in a bowl topped with granola and my new blueberries

It wasn’t quite sweet enough so I had fun drawing random shapes in  it with the honey…

hehe... maybe I'm a nerd but I'm ok with that :P

I also had some grapes which were really good in the green monster… and some toast which I have no picture of :(

Who knew grapes could be so gorgeous!

After that I did some major history reading and made it through half the chapter! Yeah I’m pretty awesome I know ;P

After all that reading I need a snack, although lunch had kept me pretty freakin’ full!

Bran muffin from TJs with cottage cheese and pumpkin butter!

I was so tired by dinner I totally forgot to take pictures but I had a veggie wrap and some “Black” Bean soup.

This morning I got up and weighed myself and I lost 1.2 pounds! I have now lost a pound or more the last 2 weeks in a row which is pretty darn good for me! I always lose the most weight during volleyball season because I am so much more busy the days we have games and I eat less also.

That’s all I got for y’all right now! I just finished history (hallelujah!) so I’m just hanging out trying to enjoy the last of this sunday…

xoxo

E

Sorry for not blogging all weekend. This has been a very interesting weekend. *this might get a little wordy so bear with me and there will be plenty of pictures later*

Friday night I was feeling really bad. Not sick but sad and frustrated and lonely.

I have been going to the same barn on Saturdays for over 10 years and the people there are practically my family. When I came back from Colorado I had discovered a lot about myself, who I want to be, weight loss, etc. I tried to explain this to them, they mean so much to me it was only natural to want to share what I learned with them the  same way I did with my mom. But as I was explaining to them how I learned that I don’t feel the need to change the world or write novels (which we have sort of jokingly talked about) but that I just want to help a few people and be happy, I was met with blank eyes. The kind of eyes that say “I can’t relate at all to what you are saying to me but I am going to smile and pretend that I do so I won’t hurt your feelings.” It hurt, not that they didn’t understand that’s not their fault, but that these people who mean so much to me can’t understand this huge and really important thing that happened to me and they can’t relate to the things I learned from it.

In Colorado I discovered this part of myself that really wanted to be more spiritual. I think that it was always there but it just became louder out there. When I say spiritual I don’t mean like going to church on Sunday kind of spiritual (although I have nothing at all against going to church or mosque, or temple) I mean Eat, Pray, Love kind of spiritual. This isn’t the kind of thing most 16 year olds are faced with so I had no idea what to do with this desire to meditate and learn more about the spiritual side of myself.

So there I was 11:00 pm Friday night on the couch with my mom bawling my eyes out. I felt really lonely and bored with my life. I missed backpacking where every day had meaning and I grew as a person. I know that I can’t have that everyday but I wanted to have it sometimes. Then mom mentioned that there is a Buddhist Sangha that met in an Unitarian Church about 20 minutes from my house. At first I thought, “I can’t be a Buddhist” but the idea of being able to really meditate and learn how to do it right with people who were also interested in meditation really stuck in my mind.

Fast forward to Sunday at 7:00 at night. There I was sitting in the basement of this church with a bunch of mis-matched people from all walks of life meditating and reading the Noble Eightfold Path.

It was a new experience and I really know almost nothing about Buddhism but I loved it and should you be in that church next Sunday at 7 you’d probably see me. I don’t know how it will fit into my life when school starts but if I find that it is really something that matters to me I know I can make it work.

So I know that was quite wordy so let’s get onto the food!

Rather than explain everything I’ve eaten since Friday I will simply show you…

Friday

Saturday

My very first Vegan Overnight Oats! With pumpkin, cinnamon, crasins, raisins, and almond butter!

Elementary school lunch! PB&J, sugar snap peas (with nutritional yeast), and applesauce.

Veggies, tomato sauce, and polenta (its hiding under the veggies)

Sunday

My Sunday Tradition: made with white flour and all! Protein powder is the only remotely healthy thing about these beauties!

Today

Bio :/

Mmmm my favorite standby lunch :)

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Oh! By the way, I know I haven’t been updating on my weigh-ins lately what with trips and stuff, but I lost .8 pounds this week. Not to bad. I think I have been gaining major muscle but I am trying to lower my calories a little bit so I can get back into the routine of consistently losing weight!

E :)

Before I get to the meat of this post I will tell you guys that I “gained” 2.2 pounds this week. Although I ate a TON on vacation and didn’t weigh myself when I got back, but I could easily have gained 3 or 4 pounds on vacation in which case I really lost weight this week! At least that’s how I’m choosing to look at it. No onto the real point of this blog…

I use a website called Sparkteens, which is partly a social networking site for teens who are trying to lose weight, gain weight, or just be healthier. I have a blog on there and I posted a version of this post on there. But I thought that it was a post that might be relevant on here too. So keep in mind that a lot of the eating stuff in here might not be relevant to those of you who have taught me to eat this way. ( thanks by the way)
*Just FYI this blog is going to be a little deep, but I think some of what I will say needs to be said, and I need to say it so that I can look back and remind myself.

Although I have not been doing this blog for very long I have learned a lot about being healthy and happy through this blog and trough the fantastic blogs of others. (From here on this is exactly what I posted on Sparkteens so keep that in mind when you think “well actually I do that already” or whatever you might think.)

Some of what I have learned isn’t relevant to most of you guys because we all eat in different ways and for some of you the idea of eating a mostly vegan diet would never work but for me it has made me feel happier and healthier than ever before despite the fact that the number on the scale hasn’t changed.

However, there are somethings that I have learned that are relevant to everyone weather you are trying to lose weight, gain weight, or neither. The best example of this I can give right now comes from one of the blogs I read called Oh She Glows (http://ohsheglows.com/). In her last post Angela talked about a quote from the book Eat Pray Love, which I haven’t read but after reading this quote I plan to. Hear is the quote:

“It was in a bathtub back in New York, reading Italian words aloud from a dictionary, that I first started mending my soul. My life had gone to bits and I was so unrecognizable to myself that I probably couldn’t have picked me out from a police line-up. But I felt a glimmer of happiness when I started studying Italian, and when you sense a faint potentiality for happiness after such dark times you must grab onto the ankles of that happiness and not let go until it drags you face-first out of the dirt- this is not selfishness, but obligation. You were given life; it is your duty (and also your entitlement as a human being) to find something beautiful within life, no matter how slight.
I came to Italy pinched and thin. I did not know yet what I deserved. I still maybe don’t know fully what I deserve. But I do know that I have collected myself of late- through the enjoyment of harmless pleasures- into somebody more intact. The easiest, most fundamentally human way to say it is that I have put on weight. I exist more now than I did four months ago. I will leave Italy noticeably bigger than when I arrived here. And I will leave with the hope and the expansion of one person- the magnification of one life- is indeed an act of worth in this world. Even if that life, just this one time, happens to be nobody’s but my own.”

I really liked this quote and I thought that some of it was really important. At the end of her post Angela asked a few questions to her readers.

“Do you have any ‘glimmers of hope’ in your life right now? Have you ever experienced any small pleasurable activity that got you though a difficult time, like the blog did for me? Are there things in your life that you could do to create these small bits of happiness in your day?”

Here is my answer to some of those questions:

For me my “glimmers of happiness” are cooking and exercising. They may not be all that original but they make me happy. When I’m in the kitchen and I make something I cam totally from my head not a recipe. In the kitchen you follow your own rules, if you don’t lie cilantro you just leave it out, if you think some lemon juice would brighten up your dish you put it in. Its your dish, you kitchen, you stomach, and your tongue and that’s all that matters. And I love making something and then seeing the happiness it brings my mom (my only tester) when she eats it and cannot stop telling me how good it is!

Exercise is different but the same in many ways too. Its not always as joyful as cooking. Sometimes I’m hot, or tired, or I just feel lazy, but the fact that I normally still get myself up and go for my run or go to kickboxing despite how I am feeling makes me proud. And there is nothing like the feeling of an amazing workout. The kind that wipes away all the stress of whatever else happened that day or whatever could happen. When you feel like you could fly because your body feel powerful and strong. That feeling is definitely a feeling that nothing can replace. Or when you finish a particularly hard workout and are amazed at hoe much farther you pushed yourself than you even thought possible. Exercise has taught me so much about my body and myself and the confidence it has brought me is irreplaceable, and makes me so happy.

I think its really important that everyone do things that they love. Life is short and spending any of it miserable by choice seems wrong to me. So I have a few questions of my own for you guys.

Do you have things in your life that make you happy? Does whatever “diet” or “plan” you are “on” make you happy and bring joy to your life? Or do you dread working out and only do it because it burns calories? Do you love the food you eat and look forward to it? Does most of what you eat make you feel energized and healthy? Or do you eat what you what you eat because it is low in calories, while craving things you have decided you “can’t have?”

I really encourage anyone who has read this far into this post to think about the answers to those questions. And BE HONEST with yourself.

What motivates you do lose weight? Is is just so that you can look like the models in Seventeen magazine or wear a bikini? Or is it because you want to feel good about yourself and your body, like really bone deep good? It’s really easy to say well duh I want to feel good about my body and I’ll feel good when I can wear a bikini. But I can tell you that there is a difference!

I feel so good about my body right now, and I still would not wear a bikini. Sure when I look in the mirror I wish my stomach were flatter etc. but I also love my body and I am constantly impressed with how strong and powerful it is! I eat healthy and am trying to lose weight because I love my body not so that I can love my body. I want the way I feel on the inside to be reflected on the outside.

My weight loss journey so far has taught me so much about myself and about how to be healthy and happy. I am not proud that I once was 186 pounds and ate tons of carbs and fat and almost not veggies. Or that I never exercised. But I am grateful that it happened to me because losing the weight has made me a better person. I am stronger both mentally and physically than I ever have been before. I am going backpacking in Colorado for 12 days soon. I will have to carry all my clothes, food, and whatever else I need on my back. 2 years ago I would never have done something like that! I would not have been physically capable and I would not have had the confidence to believe I could!

I hope that one day all of you guys reach the same realizations I have come to. I can tell you that I am still learning more about my self everyday, and this is far from the end of my weight loss journey! You have to learn these things for your own though and I encourage all of you guys to stick with it! One of my favorite quotes is “Nothing worth having comes easily.” I cannot tell you guys how true that is and I am a living example of that.

If you actually read this whole blog thanks for reading this through and I hope this helps you in some way no matter how big or small.

Ok so there you go! That basically sums up this HUGE realization I came upon today! I promise a regular old post will also happen today but I needed to put this out there :)

Elli

Hello Everyone!

Happy Belated 4th of July to everyone from the USA!!

For those of you who don’t know, my official weigh-in day is Sunday. I weigh myself right after I get up so that I don’t eat or drink anything before. Also for any who don’t know, I have been stuck between 161 and 156 (25 and 30 pounds lost) for about 7 or 8 months. Yeah it’s been beyond frustrating! Well yesterday I got up and weighed myself like I do every Sunday. I have been eating well and working out really hard as you can probably see, but after so many good weeks with bad weigh-ins I wasn’t expecting much. I lost 2.4 pounds! Whoohoo! I normally lose about .5 to 1 pound a week but in the last 3 weeks I have lost over 2 pounds twice! And I was 156.6!!!! I HAVE OFFICIALLY LOST 30 POUNDS!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have been waiting 7 months to see that number and I honestly couldn’t even believe it when I saw it, I still don’t think it has really hit me. I am so happy!

In other news, yesterday my mom and I took a trip up to Princeton, NJ (home of the Ivy League University) to go hiking with this girl who is a member of a group of girls I will be going backpacking in Colorado with at the end of July. We are the only girls going who are not from Colorado so we thought we should meet since it just so happened we only lived about an hour apart. We went for a gorgeous hike in the woods outside of Princeton, although it was over 90 degrees even in the shade I still had fun!

We passed by this yucky little green pond with the funniest “No Swimming” sign I have ever seen

Why anyone would even want to swim in there is beyond me! Other than heat stroke :P the only danger came from some geese who thought we were a little to close to their babies for our own good. They didn’t attack but they were hissing at us!

After our run in with the geese My new friend Lissy (short for Elisabeth), our moms, and I went into Princeton for some lunch. We went to Panera Bread where I had the Strawberry and Poppyseed chicken salad which was only 280 calories and so delicious! It had strawberries, pineapple, blueberries, oranges, and pecans! ( I forgot my camera back in the car so this is not y picture, this is the link from where I got the picture: http://cookingwithkate.files.wordpress.com/2009/06/cimg5792.jpg just making sure I don’t credit for it)

After the salad we got some amazing artisan ice cream, I had vanilla and dark chocolate sorbet it was soooo good. Certainly not low calorie but I didn’t feel guilty I had decided that I was celebrating my 30 pound loss!

After lunch our little group split up and my mom and I walked around Princeton’s campus together. The campus is so beautiful, and very Ivy League.

With some pretty cool study spots!

After some major walking we came upon this really cool frozen yogurt place (grrr I can’t remember its name). It had tons of flavors of frozen yogurt that were all made from fat-freee yogurt that was really low calorie! You got to pick as many flavors you wanted ( I had plain tart and yucca whichI had never heard of but it was really good, and purple :P) then they had tons of toppings to choose from including fresh fruit! I had blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, pineapple, kiwi, cookie dough, brownie bits, mini reese’s peanut butter cups, and crushed Oreo cookie.

I only had a small amount of the unhealthy stuff but I figured how often to I get to have that stuff in my yogurt? Never! So why not right?

It was so delicious! I wish there was a place like that near my house it was such great healthy treat!

I love little day trips like that with my mom! We can get along really well if we are both in a good mood, and Princeton is such a nice town, even in 95 degree heat! It was a great way to spend the 4th, normally we are camping on the 4th but we couldn’t get our camping spot until later this year.

Speaking of camping… I leave tomorrow! I will try to post if I can but I highly doubt I will be able to post until I get back :( I’ll have a huge post when I gat back though with pictures of Milwaukee, Beloit, and our campsite with all the amazing and plentiful food!! I will miss you guys!

Hope you are all enjoying your summer! Anyone have any super cool plans?

Elli

I lost 2.8 pounds this week! Those 2 pounds from last week are history!!! Oh I can’t even tell you how good it feels :) I had an amazing week with both eating and exercise so I really felt like I would have a goo weigh-in but I figured like maybe a pound not almost 3 pounds. Not that I’m complaining… So now I’m back to 158.0. I hope that now that it’s summer I can keep having good weeks and soon I’ll get to 156 which would be 30 pounds lost! I just need to keep up what I’m doing and hope my body cooperates!

Today my mom and I are hopefully going blueberry picking which is great for me because I get to be active all afternoon and I absolutely looove blueberries. I’m still going to go to the gym for a bit though and get in a run.

I’ve decided to have an exercise challenge for myself this summer. 4 days a week I will burn 1000 calories or more which will be my 30 min morning run + kickboxing or another longer run at the gym + some other exercise during the day like yoga or strength. Then I will still take one day off a week and on the weekends I will burn 500 calories or more. So I need to get some running or something in today so I can have my 500 or more for the day.

On a slightly off topic note… I thought I would share another recipe with you guys. This one hopefully is not as intimidating as the last one might have been for anyone who doesn’t normally cook. Its a salad which is great for those summer nights when its hot out and the last thing you want is a hot dinner. For protein you can add beans, any kind should work but I think chickpeas or black beans would be the best or grilled chicken would also be really yummy for all you meat eaters. I like adding fruit to my salads also, I think they  add some different and yummy flavors to a salad but if thats too weird for you they can be removed. Don’t forget that this is a salad so you can change up the veggies/fruits to fit what you like. This salad can get pretty big too but I don’t use much dressing so it is quite low calories especially for how much food you get. I don’t really know how much of certain things I use but just use as much as you think you will need. I make this salad to feed 2 people so keep that in mind.

So here it is… My Gigantic Rainbow Summer Salad!!!

Mixed Greens ( you can use the stuff from a bag or you can buy lettuce and chop and wash it yourself which is what I do but it is more time consuming.) You will need less than you think of these because there are so many other things going into he salad.

1 red/yellow/green/orange pepper ( they all taste amazing although green peppers are less sweest and will add less color) cut off the top to remove the seeds and then cut into 1 inch squares

5 to 10 quartered cherry tomatoes depending on their size

Broccoli-steamed but not to the oint of being super soft (you can use fresh or frozen)

Sweet corn ( again fresh or frozen is fine)

1 orange ( I’ll describe what I think is the best way to cut it under the recipe)

a handfull of fresh blueberries (make sure you wash them well)

a handfull of cherries (if they are in season) pitted and cut in half

4 teaspoons of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)

1 tablespoon of red wine vingar

a tiny sprinkle of salt and some black pepper

Mix all the ingredients in a big bowl and serve. You can put cheese in if you want but beware of using to much b/c cheese is not low calorie.

How I cut up my orange:

1.) cut off the top and bottom of the orange so that you can see the fruit inside

2.) set it on you cutting board so that it is sitting upright and cut the white part off by cutting down the orange so all you have left is the actual fruit and not white outside

3.) hold it in your hand and cut into the orange so that you are cutting out the individual wedges that form naturally but make sure that the skin stuff separating the wedges is left behind.

4.) you should have wedges cut out that have no skin stuff on them, for this salad you can either leave them this size or cut the into smaller 1 inch pieces.

Hope that makes sense! Enjoy!

Elli :)

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