Month: January 2015

Meal Plan for January 31st

Long time no see! Blog posts haven’t been happening around here the past couple of days. On Thursday Lochlyn was awake super early, which is when I usually write my posts. On Friday I wrote out an entire post, and then WordPress crashed before I got a chance to post it. I thought I saved a draft, but I can’t find it, so I guess that didn’t happen. Does this happen to anyone else besides me? I am thinking I should start writing posts in a word processor so that I have a back-up copy.

Anyways, I am here today, to share my meal plan with you for the week. Like last week’s plan, I am basically following Anne’s meal plan that is part of the Winter Shape-up program. I followed week 1 last week and I really enjoyed it. It features a lot more meat-free dishes than I typically eat, and gets me to try new and very delicious recipes. Also, I have a ton of leftovers! My freezer is getting stocked up with yummy and delicious meals, that will be perfect for weeks when I am extra busy, or don’t feel like cooking.

You can download Anne’s meal plan here, and I highly recommend you check it out. I have included a version on this page, just to keep me organized.

Breakfast

 

Lunch

Dinner

Lochlyn’s New Foods

  • Couscous
  • Kale

Meal Prep

  • Wash and chop veggies
  • Make Almond Butter Breakfast Bars
  • Make Blueberry Apple Cinnamon Yogurt Bread

By the time this post is published, I will have had my groceries done for the week, and I will most likely be getting ready to go to work. It is hard for me to get used to having to work all weekend, but I am hoping it is short-lived. I am lucky I have a fun job, and get to work with some pretty great people, so it could be worse.

Hope you have a great weekend!

 

Are you following the Shape-up program at all? I am not following the workouts, but I am so enjoying the meals!

Meat-free meals… how do you feel about them? I really enjoy not eating as much meat, but my husband has other ideas. He isn’t a bean fan, and often if I make a vegetarian dish, I have to cook some meat for him on the side. This makes for a lot of work!

At My House Survey

Good morning! My mind is feeling not so creative today, so I thought I would turn to the help of a fun little survey for today’s post. I have seen this survey floating around on quite a few people’s blogs, but I think I saw it first on Tina’s.

Household Chore I actually enjoy: Folding laundry. Especially folding all of Lochlyn’s cute  little baby outfits. I also like assembling her cloth diapers. I usually bring both our laundry baskets full of clean clothes downstairs and fold away while I watch something on Netflix. I actually get pretty bored watching TV or movies if I’m not doing something else at the same time, so laundry is the perfect answer!

folding laundry

Biggest house disaster: We have a lot of secret hidden house disasters over here. I think I would had to pick our spare bedroom as the winner for this answer. Recently my parents moved into a smaller house and gave us a lot of their old stuff. It seems like the spare bedroom has become the “dumping ground” for everything that doesn’t have a place yet. It currently contains a futon mattress, single bed mattress and box spring, spare crib mattress, a dresser, end table, bookshelf, a couple large mirrors, bins of Lochlyn’s old clothes, an extra playpen, and a ton of other things. This room also doubles as the laundry hanging room. It is not a large room and you can barely get in the door it is so full. I am thankful we have another guest bedroom downstairs!

Before company arrives, I hide: the mess on the stairs. We live in a two story house. Rather than running up and down the stairs to put things away, I make a pile at the bottom and top of our stairs. I have every intention of bringing armfuls of stuff up and putting it away whenever I go up and down the stairs, but it doesn’t always happen, especially when my arms are full with my little girl. We get quite the build up of mess on the stairs, and our stairs are right at the front door, so it is the first thing that company sees. When I find out people are coming over, I usually grab everything at the bottom of the stairs and throw it into our bedroom and close the door!

Most recent music download: I have no idea. I never really download music, it has probably been a year! I usually listen to music on Spotify or Youtube. This is bad. My little brother is a musician, so you would think I would be all about supporting talent and buying music, and I should be. Maybe I will download some new songs for my next run!

The last thing I bought online: I haven’t bought anything online since I did all my Christmas shopping. The last item I bought for Christmas was these salt and pepper shakers for my parents’ stockings.

salt and pepper shakers                 cache_380_380_0_100_80_9524

 

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I hate to shop for: Jeans. The last time I bought jeans I was pregnant, and these are still the jeans that I am wearing. They aren’t maternity jeans, so the waist is all stretched out, and I feel like they are a little too short. Pretty much they don’t fit very good and they aren’t flattering. I don’t like buying jeans because I haven’t found a brand that fits me well, and since I had a baby, I’m not sure what size I am. I really need to suck it up and go buy some!

too short jeans

This is the picture that made me realize they were too short. Now I only wear them with boots!

Favorite family ritual: Playing with Lochlyn together in the evenings before she goes to bed. After dinner Josh and I do some household chores and then have some playtime before we put Lochlyn down for the night. I love watching Lochlyn play with her dad, and I love spending time with her so of course I love this time together.

playing in dark

I sleep in: … underwear. Josh is quite the furnace, so I get too hot if I wear much else. Sometimes I try to wear a tank top but usually it gets too sweaty and I have to take it off (sorry if that’s tmi!). When Josh isn’t home I sleep in a tank top and boy shorts, or pyjama pants.

I have a style crush on: My friend Janelle. She always looks so effortlessly put together. Most of the time her style is pretty casual and just slightly trendy. I need to get her to take me shopping! I don’t have a celebrity style crush because I don’t really follow celebrities. I have lots of celebrity crushes though, I just don’t know what their style is outside of movies and awards shows!

I’m currently reading: Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout. I have been reading it since I got it for Christmas, and I haven’t gotten into it yet. This is unusual for me, normally I devour a book within a couple of days. It isn’t a bad book, it just hasn’t grabbed my attention enough that I can’t put it down.

olive kitteridge

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What’s up with the ______ trend? Cell phones. Okay so I don’t think this is a trend, but I wish it was. Also, I am just as guilty of abusing my cell phone as the next person, but seriously, what is up with it. We spend so much time on our cell phones it is ridiculous! I go to the gym and everyone is staring at their phones between sets. At the grocery store, at the mall, even visiting friends, it seems like everyone is glued to them! I don’t want my girl to grow up in a world where people would rather look at their phones, than engage with others, but that is what it feels like it is coming to! I really need to work on this one, and start putting down my phone more often.

How did I ever live without: My driver’s license. I got my license about a year ago, while I was pregnant with Lochlyn. I was 27 years old when I finally decided to get it. Crazy hey! I decided I didn’t want to have to walk everywhere with Lochlyn, or be stuck in the house so I needed to do it. Now I love the freedom that comes with having my license and I can’t imagine not having it!

Now it’s your turn to answer one (or more!) of the above questions.

Also, I would love some jeans recommendations. I have a problem finding jeans because my legs are fairly large compared to my waist. What brands to you love?

 

Nutrition and Intuitive Eating

It’s time for another round of Intuitive Tuesday over at this corner of the Internet. If you haven’t popped by before, Intuitive Tuesday is where we discuss all things living intuitively. Presently we have been going through the 10 principles of Intuitive Eating as outlined in the book Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch. If you haven’t read this book you really should!

intuitive eating book

If you want to check out the other principles you can click on the links below:

  1. Reject the Diet Mentality
  2. Honor Your Hunger
  3. Make Peace With Food
  4. Challenge the Food Police
  5. Feel Your Fullness
  6. Discover the Satisfaction Factor
  7. Cope with Your Emotions without Using Food
  8. Respect Your Body
  9. Exercise-Feel the Difference

Today’s principle is (drumroll please)…. Honor your Health with Gentle Nutrition.

intuitive tuesday

I think one of the biggest concerns that most of us ex-dieters have with the concept of Intuitive Eating is that if we allow ourselves to eat as much as we want, of whatever we want, whenever we want, we will only eat chocolate cake, and we will eat ALL of the chocolate cake. The truth is that in the beginning stages of learning intuitive eating, there is a pretty good chance you will eat a lot of chocolate cake, or donuts, or ice cream, or whatever it is that sounds extra delicious to you, and that is okay. Actually, that is better than okay, it is awesome. It means you are listening to your body and allowing it to eat what it is most craving.

chocolate cake

 

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There is a reason that honouring your health is the last principle of intuitive eating. It is that it is impossible to practice healthy and nutritional eating until we fix our relationship with food. If we still have a diet mentality, eating nutritionally can become a type of diet in itself, with its own set of food restrictions. I have so been there. At one time I made sure I only ate “clean” 100% of the time. If something wasn’t healthy it wouldn’t pass my lips, no matter how much I was craving it. I actually quit eating “junk” food altogether for an entire year! That meant no desserts, no cakes, cookies, chips, pop, no “unhealthy” muffins. I didn’t even eat dark chocolate. I still can’t believe I did that. Eating healthy like this may make us look (and feel) like saints in the short term, but it can have some crazy negative affects on our minds in the long term.

I am sure most of you have heard of the term orthorexia. Yeah, I went there. I struggled with orthorexia in the past. For those of you that don’t know what it means, orthorexia is an eating disorder “which is characterized by an unhealthy and rigid obsession to eat healthfully” (Intuitive Eating, p. 197). Actually, when I first heard of the term, I started to realize I had some major problems. I often got anxiety about being in situations with unhealthy foods. I also would spend countless hours a day obsessing about what I would eat and when. Of course it had to be the “healthiest” thing I could think of. When I finally allowed myself to eat some “forbidden foods” I went on crazy binges eating everything in sight. Not too pretty.

I find it interesting that people can follow a very specific way of eating and say that it is in the name of health. The truth is, there isn’t a perfect way to eat. New findings and nutritional advice is made available all the time, and it often contradicts other popular opinions. Take a look at vegan vs. paleo diets, or low fat vs. low carb. It is controversial whether butter is healthy, or if we should even eat dairy products at all. With so much conflicting information, obsessing about trying to eat only “healthy” foods, and restricting the rest, could actually be getting us nowhere.

milk jugs

 

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What I am trying to say is that honoring our health and our bodies and eating nutritiously isn’t black and white. It isn’t about food restrictions, or setting up diet rules. It is about paying attention to what our bodies need, and want, and how they feel after we eat something. For this reason, I think that it is more important to focus on our relationship with food and our food issues, and the last principle of gentle nutrition will come naturally.

When I first started practicing Intuitive Eating, and allowing myself to eat freely, I was overwhelmed with all the delicious things that I could eat. I would go to the grocery store and browse all the aisles of “unhealthy” treats, trying to decide what I wanted. I went home empty-handed sometimes because I couldn’t make my mind up. I definitely ate a lot of sweets those first couple of months, but I needed to so that my body and mind would trust that desserts weren’t going anywhere. I needed to know that I was allowed to eat them freely, without guilt, or punishment. I think that this is an important step in the intuitive eating process for those that have restricted foods in the past. Eventually I found that I started craving healthy things instead of sweets. I wanted crunchy salads and home-cooked meals. Our bodies know what they need, and once we learn to listen to them and trust them, they are awesome and guiding us to make good choices – with the occasional indulgence of course!

crunchy salad

 

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In my opinion, considering the nutritional merits of a particular food can be helpful once you have learned the other principles of intuitive eating and healed your relationship with food. You don’t have to compromise what you want to eat, to eat nutritionally. Honoring nutrition can be something as simple as making your own salad dressing instead of buying store bought if you are craving a salad. Store bought dressings are often loaded with less-nutritional ingredients. If you want store bought, by all means, then go for it, but if it doesn’t make a difference to you, then make your own. Another example is to choose whole grain bread as opposed to white bread if you want a sandwich, or choosing cereal with a lower sugar content if you want cereal. When making nutritional choices like this, it is still important to listen to what your body wants, and honor its cravings.

 

Do you consider nutrition when making food choices? 

How do you balance eating nutritional foods with eating what your body is craving?

A Day in the Life #3

It is hard to believe it is Monday already. Working on Saturday and Sunday really makes the weekend fly by. I would recap my weekend for you guys, but it wasn’t an exciting one, and I didn’t really take much for pictures. I spent the evenings hanging out with my family, and the days working. I also went for a long run on Sunday morning. Long as in four miles, but that is the longest run I have gone on yet for half marathon training. I was a little bit nervous about running that far, but it actually felt pretty easy. I wore a fuel belt full of water to get used to running with the weight, and I improved my average speed per mile by 10 seconds. Also, it was super slippery outside and I had to take it slow in quite a few areas, so I was really happy with my time.

blurry run

 

Blurry run photo – I didn’t stop to take it!

Anyways, since I am not going to share much about my weekend, I thought I would share my “Day in the Life Post” that I meant to post on Friday. As I mentioned on the weekend, life got in the way, and I didn’t end up posting. This is an example of a fairly typical Thursday for Lochlyn and I.

4:50 – Josh nudges me in bed to let me know my alarm is going off. I am a deep sleeper and he usually hears it first. I reach over and press the snooze button. Anything before 5:00 is too early.

5:00 – My alarm goes off again. I drag myself out of bed, and remember that I am getting up to go for a run. I get excited (I’m a weirdo) and feel slightly more awake. I get ready to go, start the truck to let it defrost a bit, and grab half a banana to snack on.

5:30 – I leave my warm, cozy house and drive in the dark to the gym.

5:40 – I run on the treadmill at the gym for three miles. Since I have been feeling like I have a bit of the cold, I take it fairly easy. I ran at a speed of 5.5 and an incline of 0.5. I think my pace was 10:54/mile. This seems to be a fairly easy/comfortable pace for me.

6:30 – I get home form the gym and immediately make a cherry smoothie and then top it with the last of the Maple Sesame Granola. If you haven’t noticed yet, I have a smoothie every time after I work out. I love them, I crave them after workouts, and they never get old for me.

cherry granola smoothie

I drank my smoothie while I stretched and then foam rolled. While I did this I watched the beginning of When Harry Met Sally. I had actually never seen it before.

foam rolling

7:00 – I get my butt up off my yoga matt, turn off the movie, and start writing Thursday’s post. Sometimes I have to motivate myself to blog, other days I am so excited to write. Either way, I almost always end up enjoying it. If I’m not feeling it, I just don’t do it (as you can probably tell by the lack of posts some days).

8:00 – I publish the post. Lochlyn is still sleeping so I quickly hop in the shower before she wakes up. She normally wakes up around 8:00.

8:15 – I get out of the shower and dry off. Then I realize I haven’t booked Lochlyn in with childcare at the gym yet for Friday. I have to book the day before, and Fridays tend to be busy, so I call to book her in. Afterwards, I clean up my smoothie mess and check the recipe that I plan on making in the crockpot for dinner that night.

8:30 – Lochlyn starts stirring. I top up my water and go in to nurse her. She isn’t fully awake, but I find that if she sleeps in too long she misses her first nap. I nurse my groggy girl and then change her diaper.

9:15 – Breakfast time! Even though I had a smoothie not too long ago, I find I am pretty hungry. Banana, egg white oatmeal for me, topped with peanut butter. Lochlyn is having oatmeal, parsnips, carrots, apple and greek yogurt.

mom and baby oats

9:30 – Lochlyn and I eat our breakfast together. She takes forever to eat, so while I am waiting for her to finish I make a pot of coffee and tidy up the kitchen

breakfast smiles

10:00 – My baby girl is done eating. I clean her up, and take her upstairs to do laundry and have a quick cuddle before it’s nap time.

10:15 – I go through Lochlyn’s nap time routine and then put her down for her first nap of the day. She falls asleep right away.

10:30 – While Lochlyn naps I make Crockpot Vegetable Korma for dinner. It was pretty easy to make but it took me awhile since I had to be ninja quiet so Lochlyn didn’t wake up.

11:00 – Dinner is all prepped and ready to go. I take a load of laundry downstairs to fold in front of the movie I started earlier. I am still feeling a bit sick and plan to relax and take it easy today. I also enjoy the coffee I made earlier.

11:30 – My mom calls to have a chat, so I turn off the movie and talk to her for a bit.

11:45 – Lochlyn is awake. I head upstairs to nurse her.

12:30 – After breastfeeding it is time for lunch. I have some leftovers from a wild rice and turkey sausage casserole I made a couple nights ago. Lochlyn has avocado, green beans and sweet potato.

1:00 – I clean up our lunch mess and the mess I made while getting dinner into the crockpot. I also tidy up the main floor as I plan to vacuum and there are toys everywhere!

1:15 – It’s vacuuming time. Lochlyn plays in her playpen and watches me vacuum like a crazy person. We have laminate flooring and I have to move all the furniture and vacuum under everything or it gets crazy dusty. It takes me awhile and is a lot of work! When I am almost finished Lochlyn starts to get fussy in her playpen. I pick her up and carry her while I finish the last of the vacuuming. This is no easy task – she is getting so big!

playpen wave

 

She is waving for the camera here

2:00 – It is beautiful and sunny outside so I decide to take Lochlyn for a quick walk before nap time. I am still in my pyjamas (don’t judge!), so I rush around the house like a crazy person getting changed and getting Lochlyn ready to go. We don’t have much time before her nap so I keep her in her pyjamas and just throw a jacket on her. I don’t even bother to change her diaper, which hasn’t been changed for a couple hours (again, don’t judge!).

2:10 – Lochlyn and I leave the house to go for a quick walk around the block. I want to be home by 2:30 to get her ready for her afternoon nap. We walk through a park by our house, and as I am on the way home, I notice that Lochlyn is nodding off. By the time we are on our street, Lochlyn is sound asleep. Since she has been sick lately, I don’t have the heart to wake her. I know she needs all the rest she can get. I decide to keep walking, so we start to head towards the lake by our house. A couple blocks in she starts to wake up, so we turn around and head home. A block from our house, Lochlyn is sleeping again! I debate taking her home and trying to put her down in her crib, but it is so hard to get Lochlyn to do back to sleep once you wake her up.

warm winter walk

In the end I decide to just keep walking with her. She ended up sleeping in her stroller for over an hour and 20 minutes! It was great to enjoy the fresh air and warm weather, but I hadn’t planned to walk that long and I was unprepared. I had no water, and not the best shoes on. Also I had wanted to take it easy that day since I was getting over a cold. Lochlyn didn’t even have mittens or a toque on. Oops!

beautiful winter walk

3:45 – Lochlyn woke up around 3:30, so I quickly headed for home. Once we got there I changed Lochlyn out of her diaper that should have been changed two hours before. Sorry baby! I also quickly threw a salad together to snack on. All that exercise made me hungry!

4:00 – I nursed Lochlyn and watched more of When Harry Met Sally. I think I liked this movie? Kind of? It was a little too much of a chick flick for me, but it was cute. I have to admit I’m not a huge fan of Billy Crystal though.

4:25 – Lochlyn didn’t eat that well so I pumped afterwards. I sat in the glider chair in Lochlyn’s room and she played at my feet. Lately she wants to be as close to me as possible at all times. I love it.

lochlyn playing at my feet

4:45 – I finished pumping, and I pulled out the mop to finish cleaning the floors before Josh got home. Lochlyn played in her playpen again so she wasn’t crawling all over the wet floors. I pulled Lochlyn out of her playpen while I waited for each section of the floor to dry and we played peekaboo and “Ride the Horsey” together.

5:30 – Just as I finished mopping, Josh got home from work. I put some salmon in the over for dinner. The vegetables I made earlier seemed like they would be really flavourful so I just added some dill and lemon to the salmon and kept it nice and simple.

5:45 – Josh, Lochlyn and I all hang out and Josh and I talk about our days.

6:15 – Dinner is ready. We are having leftover brown rice, the Vegetable Korma I made earlier, and baked salmon. Everything is good, but the Korma really stole the show. I highly recommend this recipe. I used less of the spices and salt, and it still had so much flavour. Josh isn’t a big fan of curry or vegetables and he loved it, and Lochlyn wouldn’t stop eating it. She has since devoured a ton of the leftovers too! After dinner we tidy up the kitchen together.

easy slow cooker norma

 

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6:45 – I head upstairs with Lochlyn while Josh finishes the dishes, and we tidy up her room and play (which simultaneously messes up her room again!).

7:00 – I quickly take some laundry out of the wash and put away what I fold early. I also get myself ready for bed. I like to do this early before Lochlyn goes to sleep so I don’t have to worry about being extra quiet later.

7:30 – I change Lochlyn, and get her pyjamas and sleep sack on.

7:45 – Breastfeeding time and then Lochlyn and I go through her bedtime routine and I put her to bed. She falls asleep almost right away.

8:30 – I head downstairs and say goodnight to Josh. He is watching youtube videos on the computer I think? I can’t exactly remember.

8:45 – I climb into bed and read for a few minutes before turning off the light. It is an early night for me, but I am trying to get lots of sleep to help me fight this cold.

That was my day. Pretty standard Thursday except for that super long walk thrown in there. I am glad that we got out, the weather has been so beautiful, I need to enjoy it while it lasts. My cold is gone now, so maybe the fresh air did me some good!

 

What is the weather like where you live? 

 

January 24th Meal Plan

First of all, I apologize that I didn’t get a post up yesterday. I had planned to do a “day in the life post”, but Lochlyn had other ideas. I usually write my posts in the morning before Lochlyn wakes up, but on Friday morning she decided to wake up at 4am. I tried for an hour and a half to get her to go to sleep, and then ended up bringing her to bed with me. We slept until almost 8, which meant no time to post. I think we both needed some extra sleep though. Watch for a “Day in the Life” post next week!

I wanted to pop in today quickly to share my meal plan with you. I mentioned a few days ago that I wanted to follow the meal plan that went along with the Winter Shape-up program. Well, I didn’t think it would be launched in time, but the good news is that it came out early! If you want to check out the meal plan, with links to all the recipes, and gluten-free and vegan options, you can click here. I wrote out my meal plan, which is almost the exact same as the shape-up plan, for organization’s sake.

winter shape up 2015

Breakfast Ideas

Lunch Ideas

Dinner Ideas

Snack Ideas

Lochlyn’s New Foods

  • Tomatoes
  • Nutritional Yeast

Meal Prep

  • Wash and chop veggies
  • Granola bars
  • Carrot Cake Muffins
  • Quinoa Bites
  • Lentil Soup (if I have time)

Wow that is a long meal plan for me. I usually don’t get past planning dinners! Hopefully I get some good ideas out of this. I am thinking we will have a lot of leftovers anyways!

 

 

 

New Shoes and Sick Baby Blues

Happy Thursday everyone! I have lots of random things to share with you today, so I am linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for some Thinking out Loud action.

thinking out loud

1. I bought new running shoes on Tuesday. It is about time. I have been running in minimalist-style shoes designed for weight-lifting and my knee has been getting really sore. My old running shoes are WAY too small now that I have had a baby. My feet have grown about 1 shoe size, and I think the shoes were a little on the small side to begin with because they are 2 sizes smaller than the shoes that I bought.

I had a pretty hard time finding the right shoes, Lochlyn and I drove into Red Deer together on Tuesday after lunch. I had plans to buy shoes from Sport Chek since I had a $150 gift card to use up, but I was not impressed with their service. It was hard enough finding a salesperson to help me, but the one that eventually did ended up not know a thing about running shoes. To make matters worse, he pretended he knew what he was talking about, and recommended some completely wrong shoes for me. After trying on a couple shoes, and googling his recommendations for more information, I decided Sport Check may not have been the best idea.

I ended up using my gift card to buy a foam roller, and headed to The Running Room in hopes of more knowledgeable staff. I was nervous because it was past Lochlyn’s nap time, and I didn’t know how she would hold up going to another store, but she did great. There were no other customers in the store, and I got great service. One of the employees even held Lochlyn and played with her the whole time while I tried on shoes. (She used to be a childcare worker so she knew what she was doing). Anyway, I ended up getting Saucony Triumph Iso shoes, and so far I really like them. I ran in them for the first time this morning, and at the moment I have no knee pain!

saucony triumph iso

2. Lochlyn has been feeling under the weather again. She has had a fever and a runny nose on and off for the past week.This is the first time she has had a fever and I felt a little bit nervous about it. I ended up calling a nurse to ask for some advice, and told me not to do anything at all unless Lochlyn gets other symptoms. This made me feel better until she said that it didn’t matter how high Lochlyn’s fever got, it wasn’t a big deal unless other symptoms showed up. I think that if Lochlyn’s fever got high enough I would take her to the hospital. Maybe I am paranoid, but I want my baby to be safe.

standing in crib

At first I actually thought Lochlyn might be teething, but yesterday my nose started getting really runny too. I feel fine except for a little stuffed up, but it is still frustrating. This year seems to be the most sick I have ever been. I think I keep picking up sicknesses from Lochlyn, so I guess I need to get used to it.

3. This week I am planning to add a longer run in for half marathon training. I have been running three miles three times a week. My longer run is only going up to four miles, but that is long for me, and I don’t want to be sick for that. The past two weeks have felt really good with running. I have incorporated some hill training and progressive runs in and I have finally been feeling like I could run farther than three miles without dying. Today’s three miles was a little bit harder, and I am thinking that it could have been because I have caught Lochlyn’s cold. So frustrating! I actually don’t feel sick at all except for having a stuffed up head, and I don’t want to miss out more of training. Any advice from runners out there? How do you adjust your training when you aren’t feeling great? How sick do you have to be to decide to miss a run?

4. My cleaning schedule has been going awesome this week. I am hoping that I can keep up with it and have a tidier house. I have had more time to clean this week since we haven’t been going to the gym during the day as Lochlyn is sick. I have also found that using the crockpot more really helps. I can make dinner while Lochlyn is napping, so that in the early evening I can clean up a bit before Josh gets home.

5. As you probably know, I started work last weekend, and it actually went pretty good. The shop was slow, which made my day drag on, but besides that I didn’t mind it at all. I thought I would be sad leaving Lochlyn, but I am happy leaving her with Josh and I know they will have a good time together. My main worry is that I am going to be scheduled to work every single weekend. I had asked to work two weekends a month, but my boss has said that with the way that she schedules, that could get too complicated. I am hoping that we can figure something out, because working every weekend is not going to fly. I need some time with my family!

 

josh and lochlyn on old futon

6. Lochlyn slept for 2 hours and 40 minutes yesterday. That is the longest nap she has ever had … ever! I think it must have been because she is sick, and I am sure she needed the rest. I actually started to get worried about her because she never sleeps that long. I was thankful that I had a video monitor so I could check on her and make sure she was okay!

7. Have you guys ever heard of Gina’s Shape up programs? She offers a free program twice a year (winter and summer) that includes a work out program, and lots of inspiration. I followed the Summer Shape-Up plan this year and I really enjoyed it. It isn’t my preferred style of workouts (too much jumping around and not enough heavy lifting) but it was good to shake up my normal routine. The Winter Shape-Up is starting January 26th. If you are looking for a new exercise program, or getting bored with your current one I suggest you check it out! The Shape-Up program lasts four weeks, and each week is different and has different work-outs.

I am mentioning this because one of my favourite parts about participating in the Summer Shape-Up program, was the meal plan. Anne from Fannetastic Food puts together a FREE meal plan to go along with the Shape-Up programs. I followed the meal plan in the summer, and it really changed the way that I eat. It challenged so many of my “food rules” in a good way. Anne is a registered dietician, and her meal plans offer lots of healthy ideas.  It was a great way to get my out of my eating comfort zone and get me to try new things. It also really helped me learn to eat intuitively, by breaking through some of those food and diet rules that I had in place without even realizing it. Anne’s meal plans offer easy and healthy snack ideas, and quick and delicious meal recipes. These meals plans aren’t a diet. They don’t tell you how much to eat, or when to eat. Portion sizes are sometimes recommended, but you can each as much as you need to, whenever you need to – that’s my kind of plan!

edamame salad

I have been in a bit of a breakfast and lunch rut lately. Lochlyn and I tend to eat the same things everyday. For breakfast I have banana egg white oatmeal and lunch tends to be whatever I can find in the fridge, and is never really what I feel like eating. I am thinking about following the meal plan for the Winter Shape-Up program just to get some variety back in my meals. I won’t be following the work-out plan, but I will be saving it in case I want to try it later! I am hoping to do my grocery shopping tomorrow, and I really hope the meal plan comes out in time for me to pick up what I need!

banana oatmeal

8. I am going to leave you all with a picture of Lochlyn because I think she is adorable, and I have a question for you …

favorite game

 

Lochlyn is playing her new favourite game. Can you guess what it is?

Have you ever tried the Shape-up programs and/or the meal plan that goes with it? What did you think?

 

 

 

 

 

Intuitive Tuesday: Some Thoughts on Exercise

I’m back for another round of Intuitive Tuesday.

intuitive tuesday

If you are new here, Intuitive Tuesday is where we discuss all things living intuitively. Right now we have been going through the intuitive eating principles that are outlined in the book Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole, and Elyse Resch. If you haven’t read the book, I highly recommend it. If you want to check out the other intuitive eating principles, you can click on the links below.

  1. Reject the Diet Mentality
  2. Honor your Hunger
  3. Make Peace with Food
  4. Challenge the Food Police
  5. Feel Your Fullness
  6. Discover the Satisfaction Factor
  7. Cope with Your Emotions without Using Food
  8. Respect Your Body

And that brings us to today’s Intuitive Eating principle. Exercise – Feel the Difference. At first, I thought that I didn’t really need to pay too much attention to this principle. I work out five days a week, and I hate missing a day. I love going to the gym, and I love the endorphins that I get from a good sweat session. A lot of this chapter in the book was about how to motivate yourself to exercise. It also listed some reasons why you should start exercising more. In my case, I don’t need a whole bunch of reasons to hit the gym, I already have reasons enough, and I love going. I am not saying this to brag, but to explain that even if you exercise regularly, you should still take some time to consider this principle in its full form.

As I have explained recently, my reasons for exercising have changed quite a bit recently. I started exercising back in the day to improve what my body looked like. Along with image, I also wanted to have the identity of someone who was in shape. After I got engaged in 2005, my motivation was geared mainly to losing weight, and I majorly focused on how much time I spent at the gym, and how many calories I burned.

Soon I felt like I had to work out no matter what. If I didn’t work out, I didn’t allow myself to eat as much, and because I was crazy restricting my food intake, I wanted to eat as much as possible. I worked out so that I could eat a pre-workout snack. Pretty messed up. I also worked out because I followed a program and I didn’t want to miss a day. If I missed a day, I would have to make it up later, which wasn’t easy when my program was already six days a week.

The book Intuitive Eating explains that you shouldshift your focus to how it feels to move your body, rather than the calorie-burning effect of exercise(p. 183). When I go to the gym, I notice that I am surrounded by girls telling each other how great they look, or talking about what they ate that day. Girls that talk about how they are feeling fat, or how good they are doing on their diet. Listening to all this talk has made me realize that the majority of women (and men) workout to achieve their dream body, or at least a better body. I bet that at my gym, most people aren’t there for our health, but for aesthetics.

gym clothes selfie

If exercise feels like a punishment, or something that you are forcing yourself to do, then I suggest that you are doing it wrong. Intuitive Eating explains that many people associate exercise with dieting, and only work out when they are trying to lose weight. If this is the case, once you fall off the diet bandwagon, your exercise would most likely go out the window too. If you consider exercise to be a negative thing, or you just don’t enjoy it, my best advice would be to stop. Take a break. Don’t exercise again until you feel like you want to. You may think you won’t ever want to again, but I bet eventually you may crave something as simple as a walk, or even a bike ride. When you do feel the urge to exercise, pay attention to what you enjoy. You may have gone running in the past because you felt it was good for you, when really you would much rather hit up your local yoga studio and get a good stretch in. If you aren’t enjoying yourself while you exercise, it most likely won’t be sustainable.

I took over a year off from all forms of exercise except for easy walking, before I got pregnant, and then while I was pregnant with Lochlyn. I had a hard time not working out at first, but I got used to it, and it turned out to not be as big of a deal as I thought it would be. My break from exercise was mainly for health reasons, and when I could exercise again, it made me see it as more of a privilege than a chore. I was healthy enough to exercise and I was so grateful for it. Now I see it as my “me time”, and I think of it as a way that I can take better care of myself.

christmas market walk

I feel like this is a rambling kind of post, with lots of random thoughts, but I also want to mention the importance of taking in enough calories. Since so many of us associate exercise with weight loss, we have likely at one point or another dieted while we were exercising. This is not the greatest idea, especially if you are participating in intense exercise. We need enough food to fuel our workouts. Exercise burns calories, and if you are already creating a calorie deficit through dieting, you won’t have much energy to get you through your workout, and it is going to feel pretty tough and not enjoyable. This could be a big reason why exercise wasn’t enjoyable in the past. Not only is it important that you are getting enough calories, but you need to be getting enough carbohydrates to fuel your exercise. Did you know that running for two miles burns the equivalent amount of carbohydrates as three slices of bread? If you aren’t getting your carbohydrates in, your body is going to be seriously lacking in energy and your performance will suffer.

lochlyn drinking smoothie

I listened to a recording by Anne (a registered dietician) and Jason yesterday that talks about training for a race and trying to lose weight at the same time. I found their answer very interesting and applicable to this subject. You can sign up to get the recording sent to your email here. It is the last question on the recording, so if you don’t want to listen to the whole thing, you can fast forward to the end. Pretty much their answer was that you shouldn’t train for performance and try to lose weight at the same time as your running will majorly suffer. They explain their answer in a lot more detail of course!

My last thought little thought on the subject of exercise if make sure you get enough rest in. Your body needs a chance to recover between workouts! Just like exercising can be a way to take care of yourself, resting can be too. This is something that I need to work on, especially while training for a half marathon!

I feel like there is so much more to talk about with exercise and Intuitive Eating. You may see a few more posts on this subject in the future.

What is your greatest challenge when it comes to exercise? Is it motivation? Overdoing it? Finding something you enjoy? Fueling properly? My greatest challenge is listening to my body and taking days off when I need to.

Have you ever taken a significant break from exercise? How did it affect your mindset towards working out?

Maple Sesame Granola

I can’t believe it is already Monday again. This weekend just flew by. I think that working Saturday and Sunday is going to take some getting used to. It makes me feel like I don’t actually get a weekend at all. Josh works Monday to Friday, so in the past the weekend felt like a break for me because he would help out more with Lochlyn. This weekend felt even more busy than my time during the week.

Saturday involved going for a run, going to Costco, and doing some work for another job that I have picked up that I can’t share much about (Josh calls it my mysterious job). This was a busy day, but I had a really good time. I got to spend the day with Lochlyn and she loves going to Costco, so we had a lot of fun.

mom selfie

On Sunday I worked for five hours at my not so secretive retail job. The first part of the day flew by and it was great getting to know the new staff. The last part of my shift however, went by soooo slow. I forgot how long a shift can take when you aren’t busy.

Besides the slowness of my shift, work was pretty good. It actually wasn’t too hard leaving Lochlyn. I think I would have had a really difficult time taking her to childcare, but leaving her with Josh wasn’t a big deal. I am happy that they got to spend the time together. I think spending more time on the weekend together will be really good for them.

Somewhere in the midst of my busy weekend, I found the time to make a yummy recipe that I want to share with you. It is actually super easy to make, so it didn’t take up a lot of my time, and it is so good. What is this recipe you ask? Maple Sesame Granola! It is such an easy and convenient snack to have on hand, and it is healthy too. I like to top my smoothies with this, eat it with yogurt, or just munch on it by the handful.

maple sesame granola 1

This granola has a hint of sweetness from the maple syrup, that combines perfectly with the sesame seeds. I also added coconut because I love coconut in almost everything, and this granola is no exception. I think the size and texture of the dried blueberries works perfect in this recipe, but you could add any dried fruit. Raisins would be really good too! This recipe can easily be gluten-free if you use certified gluten free oats.

maple sesame granola 3

Maple Sesame Granola

  • 3 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/3 cup ground flax seed
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 cup dried blueberries
  1. Preheat oven to 225 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large roasting pan, combine oats, almond meal, ground flax seed, coconut, chopped almonds, sesame seeds, and cinnamon until evenly distributed. Set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine maple syrup and coconut oil. Bring mixture to a boil over high heat. Once it is boiling, remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  4. Slowly pour syrup mixture over the ingredients in the roasting pan. Make sure to stir as you pour, so that the syrup gets evenly distributed. Continue stirring until very well combined
  5. Bake for 1 3/4 hours, or until the granola starts to turn light brown. Stir mixture every half hour until ready. Once granola is ready, remove from the oven and stir in dried blueberries.
  6. Allow the granola to cool completely before transferring to an airtight container. Store granola at room temperature for up to two weeks. If you need to, it also freezes very well.

maple sesame granola 4

This recipe does not last long in our house. My husband and I both love it! I also made a batch for Christmas gifts this year and it was a hit.  Let me know if you try it!

 

Do you prefer being busy at work, or do you like it when your days are easy and slow? I much prefer being busy!

What’s your favourite way to eat granola?

Meal Plan for January 18th

I have to admit, my breakfasts and lunches have been a little lack lustre lately. I spend enough time planning dinners that by the time I am done, I don’t feel like planning the rest of my meals as well. I think that if I was better at planning breakfast and lunch ideas, I would eat a lot healthier and my meals would have more variety. I also think it would help a lot in preparing Lochlyn’s meals. I didn’t plan breakfasts or lunches this week, but I am thinking it may have to start happening soon. That being said, here is what’s on the menu this week for dinner:

Lochlyn’s New Foods

  • onion
  • garlic
  • curry powder
  • tomatoes

Meal Prep

  • Wash and chop veggies
  • Make these granola bars

Today I am planning to get a run in, and go to Costco. Sunday I am heading to work (first day back!). I am hoping it goes really well!

lochlyn eating yogurt

Have a great weekend!

 

I loooove homemade chewy granola bars. Any amazing recipes for me?

 

Two Week Cleaning Schedule

I can’t believe that it is already Friday – this week has just flown by for me. Perhaps it has gone by so fast since this is my last week before I start working again. This weekend is going to be a busy one as I am starting back at work. I am really working at being positive about it all.

mom and baby selfie

I know I made quite a few confessions in yesterday’s post, but I have one more to make. I haven’t fully cleaned my house since before Christmas … like almost a week before Christmas. It is quickly becoming a pretty big disaster. I seriously don’t usually go a full month between cleanings, but we had house guests after Christmas, then I got sick, and now I think Lochlyn is teething. She hasn’t been her usual happy self, and she hasn’t been sleeping very well. She has been needing some extra love and attention lately, which is fine by me!

tired lochlyn

With going back to work, I am going to have even less time to take care of my house, and spend time with my family. Right now, the plan is that I will be working weekends, which is when I usually am the most productive around the house. I have decided to put together a cleaning schedule to help get me on track with cleaning a little bit everyday. Hopefully my house won’t be quite as much of a disaster with this bad boy in place.

two week cleaning schedule

Along with this list, I also plan to spend time tidying up the house, and do a load of laundry everyday (we have a lot of laundry because I use cloth diapers on Lochlyn). I find that trying to get a little bit done throughout the week, rather than spending a whole day cleaning works better for me, especially now that I have a baby I have to take care of too.

I get more done with a plan in place, but I don’t want to be too obsessive about this plan. If something gets missed, I can always take some time on the weekend to catch up, or ask Josh for help. Worst case scenario, I will just try to get it done the following week!

I think this plan is going to start today. Meal planning and groceries! Guess I better get started on the meal planning :)

 

Do you follow a cleaning schedule or would my type A personality drive you crazy?

Do you like to spend one whole day cleaning, or do a little bit each day?