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Being Good This Week… (Squirrel!!)

My Ideal Protein coach is desperately trying to get me back on track. I’ve got 8 pounds of the 10 T-giving to

Promising to BE GOOD!
Promising to BE GOOD!

Christmas pounds I gained, left to lose. Sigh. So, she snapped a photo of me in her office, eating a protein bar and actually writing it down. I admit, writing it down helps. So, I started out being good. You know what they say about “good intentions” and the road to hell and all that? So, my intentions are there. Really! I’ve written everything down, and guess what? Yep, that furry little animal with the fluffy tail, and/or the shiny something that caught my eye, well, yes, that distraction happened! It was a good distraction though. Does that count as part of my “being good” this week?

slainte!
slainte!

Our 8th wedding anniversary happened! That’s a fine and very good thing. We celebrated a day early, you know, to reminisce about the lovely rehearsal dinner in Costa Rica with our friends and family.

Yes, we went out to celebrate our rehearsal dinner. Why not? It was a lovely night 8 years ago! So, away we went, braving the madness that is South By Southwest happening right now in our town, to this meal at the Four Seasons. This particular celebratory meal, included a starter, drinks, main course, a couple of sides (one of them was a vegetable, in my defense. Brussels Sprouts… flash fried, but a veggie nonetheless) and a tower of doughnuts, piping hot with special sauce and ice cream. They also brought a plate of bon bons on the house with “Happy Anniversary” scripted in chocolate down the plate. I indulged, okay, over-indulged and enjoyed my favorite company, my lovely hubs. The food was not spectacular despite it’s spectacularly stupid price, and we both were underwhelmed. However, the company was perfect.

Then, on the anniversary of our actual wedding day, we decided to head out again. We are worth a two night binge. We are! This time, we were not disappointed with our local fare at Jack Allen’s kitchen. We started at the bar for our hour wait, where we met a lovely couple from Santa Cruz, California. While we were chatting, I realized that the hubby and I had picked out my engagement ring in Santa Cruz over 11 years ago! How serendipitous was that? They were about to celebrate their 48th anniversary, and I loved her still strong New York accent when she said, “Before you know it, you’ll be celebrating 48 too!” I’ll be well into my 80s by then, and I have no doubt, we’ll be celebrating then too!

Our meal was less than 1/3 the price of our rehearsal meal the night before and about a thousand times better. I exaggerate not. The steak was perfection, the salmon delicious and the drinks and dessert, well worth eating. The company was still the best part of the meal, but we learned our lesson. The Four Season’s just can’t keep up with native Austin cuisine. Lesson learned! So, though my good intentions got lost in my good times, my heart is full and happy. Belly too. Besides, who wouldn’t want to celebrate our beautiful Costa Rican beach wedding / jungle reception again and again.

Magical Costa Rican Wedding. Definitely worth celebrating over and over!!
Magical Costa Rican Wedding. Definitely worth celebrating over and over!!

I’m a lucky, lucky girl. My diet can restart now.

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Cauliflower Soup? Uh…. I Ate It!

Cauliflower soup recipe
I guess I like cauliflower, who knew?

Veggies are not my friends. I don’t like them. Well, mostly, and up until I started this Ideal Protein thing, I did not eat them much. My feelings about veggies are starting to change. I’ve come so far! So, my first cauliflower experiment was way back, on day 21 of my journey, when we made the O’Rooney’s (Blasphemous) Shepherd’s Pie. Blasphemous because my Irish husband had to put whipped cauliflower on top rather than spuds. It kind of creeped me out. I ate it, but he loved it! I don’t like things parading around as if they’re something else. Our kids totally busted us on that one too, but surprisingly, they ate it.

Since my humble no veggie beginnings, I’ve eaten lots of weird things I thought I wouldn’t eat, like Brussels sprouts, stuffed peppers, and zucchini. I know, I AM proud! My favorite thing though, and I’m not even having to lie right here, is the Cauliflower soup. It might be a little off my Ideal Protein diet, only because it’s got coconut milk which is high in fat. Coconut milk, though, doesn’t have many carbs, so there’s that. Well, and I add the cashews, again, low carb, but higher fat. It’s so delicious, I can’t even tell you! I found a version somewhere on Pinterest, but here’s my version.

Monkey Cauli Soup

1 Head of Cauliflower

Olive Oil

1/2 tsp Turmeric

1/2 tsp Coriander

1 1/2 tsp Cumin

1 Onion

3 Cups Chicken Broth

1 Cup of Coconut Milk (or the whole can if you hate wasting it) 🙂

Cashews (whatever amount you think is good in your bowl, I’m bad, I go back for more handfuls)

Disclaimer, precision is for prudes… (just kidding, I’m just not very precise, but this will work!) Preheat oven to 375. Cut cauliflower into florets or smaller, and chop onion. Put both on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil (use your best judgement, I just drizzle). Roast until kind of brown. Stir if needed. I like mine really roasted. Heat everything else in a large pan until boiling. Dump the veggies in the broth/spice mixture. Boil for 5 mins. Remove from heat and blend all together in a blender. Pour back in the pan, and add the Coconut Milk. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve while hot and sprinkle with Cashews.

Holy wow. I want some right now. Some folks would consider this recipe Paleo, maybe? Not sure on that one but if so, then woohoo!

I’d love to hear about your results with this soup. I mean, I crave it! And that’s a bit freaky because it’s cauliflower for gosh sakes!

Thanksgiving: I’m The Turkey

Gobble. Gobble. Gobble.

So, yes, my one day of eating freely, turned into 3 days of gobbling, AND 3 freaking pounds. The real truth is that I didn’t feel good after doing it. So why, why, why, why did I do it? I’m not stupid. Really, you may beg to differ by now, but I’m really not. I think that I just got tired. I was tired of being vigilant. I got tired of putting forth extra effort to find good food. I got tired of being good-ish and losing so slowly. I was all set to phase off my Ideal Protein regime before Christmas and then resume in the new year. You might have noticed, I got tired of writing. Well, maybe not tired of writing, but lazy on the blog front. I’m sorry. I missed it so. My fingers are flying and my brain is whizzing and my heart feels happy with every word I type.

I’m three pounds up, but I’m back on the horse. I’ve got a renewed vigor and desire to go ahead and tap that bell at the goal line. (What analogy is that? It makes no sense, but I like it. It is staying) To add insult to injury (in a literal sense), I’ve gotten a new Physical Therapy person at a new clinic. My surgeon’s office was great, but their PT guy was so busy that I couldn’t get in and not only was I slacking on the food front, I was slacking on my rehab, which frankly, is flat out astonishing. Unforgivable. I so want to play tennis again and be able to do all my activities without pain and swelling, that I’m kind of flabbergasted that I let life and busy-ness get in my way. I took a break from being good. I was bad.

kneeiceMonday though, thank God for Monday, I got back on the food wagon. Today, I hit the PT. Holy wow. I love my new gal. She really pushed me. In fact, she said, “Your knee’s gonna be mad, I’m not gonna lie.” I didn’t care. I went from not wanting to change clothes, go out in the cold in shorts, drive to the PT place and get going, to holy crap my legs are wimpy and weak and I’m so glad I got my ass out here to work out. It felt so good! It was a bit disheartening to realize that my good leg is actually my weak leg. What the…???  It was frustrating to have your muscles not respond like they’re supposed to. She promised to make me strong again and re-emphasized that microfracture surgery is kind of a big deal. She reminded me that most athletes don’t get back to their sport for 6 months after that kind of surgery. She was encouraging and kind. She brought me back from the brink of knee hell. Yes, it’s swollen and a wee bit sore, but it hurts so good. Hand me the ice pack, a protein bar and my laptop. I’m back! Dammit, I’m back, with a tiny limp, a few extra pounds and a head of steam. Watch out.

Let’s go!

Backsliding Bonzo, Rebuilding Resolve

The results from my raucous weekend of football and old friends showed up on my scale. For the first time since June, I gained. Was I disappointed that I ended my losing streak? Yes. Was I surprised? Yes, actually. I was surprised that I only gained one pound.  What was even more surprising was that I lost fat and gained muscle. Maybe Ruby Red vodka is a great weight loss friend? Okay, I kid. Sorta.

I do think that the extra calories I had, didn’t have such an adverse effect on me. I know that I’m not eating all the calories I need, so that my weight loss has slowed anyway. The thing is that I’m not really hungry. One friend is doing an IP bootcamp right now. She’s eating 5 Ideal Protein products a day and her veggies. Another friend is eating 4 Ideal Protein Packets on a daily basis. Maybe I should aim for 4? Maybe I’ll hit my 3? I don’t think 4 would hurt me.

For my squirrel moment, brought to you today by ADHD and me…

Hanging out on the Paseo Del Rio trail... waiting on the bikers to roll through.
Hanging out on the Paseo Del Rio trail… waiting on the bikers to roll through.

My hubs and I drove 8 hours over the weekend to a mountain bike race up in Palo Duro Canyon, way up in the panhandle of Texas. Palo Duro is the second largest canyon in the states. You think you’re just driving across the high plains, flat, flat flat. You wouldn’t even notice it, unless you were looking for it. We didn’t even bring my bike. It was hard to sit at the Transition area all day and watch the men and women come through. I would not have attempted the marathon like the hubs (50 miles of tough single track, he’s a freaking beast!!!), but the 15 mile loop would have been fun. Damn this knee!! Well, and the weather started off in the 20s, but by midday it was gorgeous and in the 60’s. I’m so proud of the hubs for doing it. Turns out it was a pretty grueling race, especially the last 17 miles.

We went to dinner that night after the race. I found a decent restaurant in Amarillo on Yelp. I ate too much. Being idle all day in a really cool state park was really difficult, and I took it out on my stomach. Cocktail, steak, sausage sampler, salad, Brussels sprouts, a few bites of bread with some cheese butter, and apple pie a’la mode. Yep, stomach pains. I ate gluten, and worse, it was pie. My hands will itch for a few days to remind me that gluttony and gluten-y are bad, bad things.

Therefore, it’s time to resolve to revert to my retro resolve. In the beginning, I was so strong! ¡Muy fuerté! Remember my “Day Freaking Three?” I was amazing. I hated this diet life, but I did NOT quit! I didn’t cheat, I was completely resolved to do this thing. I was amazing. Hey wait, I am amazing. I’ve lost almost 40 pounds! So, why stop there? Resolving to click of the last 20 pounds before March. Maybe even before February. There’s my pre-resolution, resolution.

I’m revisiting the post I wrote a few weeks ago on my Good Friday blog for a little reminder. I AM ENOUGH. And you are too.

Day 127: Moving More: Hungry More

My activity levels are up! Biking, tennis (ha! if you can call it that) and Physical Therapy. Damn, I’m hungry now! In fact, my hunger level has increased mightily, but an active week sent my happy levels up too!

Active Week

Finally, I got to stand on a tennis court and (sort of) play. Okay, not even play so much as hit a few balls. Doc’s orders = NO RUNNING, so not much went on. I invaded my old lesson, by accident… my hitting buddy fell asleep on the couch (big night out the night before, eh WRW? Just kidding, I was there too) and my regularly scheduled lesson was happening. I was enjoying watching, and was invited to stand at the net and volley with pro Tosh while she fed balls to the girls across the net. Let’s just say, it felt great, but awkward… but still great! My playing wasn’t near par, but glory be it was so awesome to be there! I did not run, but I did some Zombie quick walking to get in position. When they were in my wheelhouse though, it felt so good to hit full out! It wasn’t pretty, and I’m laughing as I type, but it will get better.

At PT today, I told Michael (my uber awesome PT dude) that I’d been on the court, he looked at me sideways “No running, right? How’d it go?” So I told him that I had to ice when I got home, but I was very careful on the “running” thing. Frankly, I can feel it’s not ready, so that’s really not difficult to hold back on. But, oh Jeeze, I wanted to. I was watching the gals hustle and sprint and stretch and cut and my desire to be back to that, and my desire to not take it for granted ever again is full on. There’s no better feeling than ripping a forehand from a flat out sprint. I thought maybe he’d tell me to back off, and I was actually prepared to agree with him. He asked if there was pain, “no? Then go do it again. There’s something really healing about being out there again, I’m excited for you. You’re doing so well!” He then proceeded to push me harder today than ever. LOVED IT!

And, I’ve been doing well this week. Except for Sunday night at the Salty Sow. Even then, I did really well. I think maybe I cheated by eating 2 deviled eggs and 3 bites of fried avocado with brisket. (holy shittakes that was amazing) but really, not much of a cheat. And then, well, maybe the three or was it four ruby red vodka sodas, pretend you couldn’t read that,  might have been against my law.

Otherwise, I’m slowly plodding downward. I’m even writing my food log, and I try to be clear. Very clear, because sometimes things just don’t sound right.

pork nutsEnjoy your week. Be active, and avoid the Pork Nuts, unless of course, you enjoy them. Cheers!

It’s a 24.4 pound monkey, baby.

Crunchy Herb Roasted Chicken Tenders, Fancy!

On My Plate, Looks like a magazine, right?
On My Plate, Looks like a magazine, right?

So, to say that I’m not a chef would be a more than subtle understatement. But while on this Ideal Protein diet, I’ve managed, among the messes and failures in the kitchen, to prove that sometimes it all works out and nobody gets hurt (not even the hubby!) Last night, when I decided to cook what I’m calling “Crunchy Herb Roasted Chicken Tenders” I went to the end-all, be-all cookbook that is Pinterest. I searched for Ideal Protein and Chicken. I knew I’d seen this recipe before and with it came accolades like, “favorite IP recipe, EVER” and “I could eat this every meal.” Yes, I was hankering for something that good.

Admittedly, it was that good! Well, I don’t want to eat it every meal, but because it was super easy, I’d venture to say fool proof even because well… I did it, and it was tasty which makes it a success! Woohoo!

I made it for two because the hubs was hungry as well. SQUIRREL! (that means I’m having a wee ADD moment, so bear with me!) He usually cooks, by the way, so I think it was hard for him to get out of the way. He’s a big brother too. He’s the oldest in the family and I’m the youngest from mine. It makes for some super hilarious exchanges “big bossy brother” to stubborn wee “I can do it myself” sister. I often pause after he’s made an obvious “suggestion” and give him the feisty little sister look and say, “Are you big brothering me?” He’ll laugh and say, “maybe” or “only when you need it.” Of course, when he doesn’t and I’m three miles past our exit and I realize it and glance his way, he’s got his funny little grin on (the one that’s really cute and charming) because he knows what is coming. “Why didn’t you tell me to get off?” “Because I didn’t want to big brother you.” He can’t win, can he? He does though because we laugh a lot and gets to live with me!

Back to the Fancy Crunchy Herb Roasted Chicken Tenders recipe! You’ll need: All natural organic boneless, skinless chicken breasts, Ideal Protein Garlic and Fine Herb Crisps (one bag per breast), an egg and spray olive oil.

Preheat the oven to 400. Spray a cooking sheet with olive oil. Cut the chicken into “fingers”. In a bowl, whip up one or two eggs. Crush the crisps. I used a zip lock bag and a glass bowl to squish the crisps because I couldn’t find the rolling pin. It worked great. Dip the chicken pieces in the egg and dredge through the crispy crumbs. Coat well. Place on baking sheet. Bake about 9 or 10 minutes and turn them over. Bake a few more until done.

They were very tasty. Hubby liked them too!

Ta Daaaa!

Mish Mash Friday

Every so often, it’s fun to throw in some random thoughts, things, ideas, experiences and stuff… and things.

  • That 50 Pound Monkey, that went to 60 Pounds, is now at 25.2 (sorry, math is hard.. had to come in and correct this… shoot) 27 pounds. Take that, monkey boy! Damn, I liked my first number better.
  • The hubby just asked me, “What are your plans for 50 Pound Monkey when you have no monkey?” I laughed, but then thought, good question! Oh, and thanks for feeling positive that I’ll get there, love!! Truthfully, there will always be a monkey, right? I mean, it might not be 50 pounds, but there will always be a ghost monkey. That sounds like I need help! What I’m trying to say is that once I’m to my goal, I’m going to have to figure out how to stay there. That’s a whole ‘nother kind of monkey! He asked if I’ll start writing about our training for our 7-day BC Bike Race (hint, hint…think he’s reminding me that I committed to that sucker?) we want to do in 2016. Yes, I think I will. I’ll be writing about all the great adventures that come our way. 50 Pound Monkey isn’t going away… well, it’s going away pound wise, but not publication wise. That’s the plan.
  • My old mountain bike is set up on the trainer, just waiting for me to get on and spin. Woohoo!
    The Joys Of Rehab: Spinning
    The Joys Of Rehab: Spinning

    I’m progressing with the knee. Funnily enough, it’s really, really weird to get on and spin. No resistance is a very weird sensation and I could absolutely fall off that stationary bike from the boredom. I thought road riding was a bore… holy frijoles even with the TV right in front of me, I want to GOOOOOO! Is that why my PT said, “I’m gonna have to worry about you doing too much!” Uh, yea, prolly so.

  • My redheaded son got so sunburned last week at his soccer reffing debut that he’s got scabby peeling yuckiness. #gingerprobs How does that child lose every tube of sunscreen I’ve put in every bag he owns. Okay, I didn’t put it in his ref bag. My bad. #badmom
  • So, this Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) lifestyle is taking off again. Isn’t that just like the good ol’ Adkin’s Diet?
  • Client lunch at at Thai Restaurant today… uh… what to order and stay with the plan. Not a Thai connoisseur.
  • This Diet Bet thing is pretty fun. I’m in two right now. One of them has a pot of over $60,000. Made my first month goal! woohoo! It’s a lose 10% in 6 months game/bet. You might try it for fun. There’s a whole social network up there too!
  • Had no water last night (as if you care… sorry, it’s random). There was a crew down the street working all night. It’s back, but do we need to boil our water? No notice from the city, but it makes me nervous!
  • I’ve got a great compression sleeve from a really cool company called Body Helix. If you’re sporty, you should check them out. They make high quality, innovative compression sleeves for most body parts. Considered being a rep for them at one point. Cool company! Anyway, I wonder if that would help my knee heal faster, and keep the swelling down. I’m gonna go try it, besides, they feel so snuggy. I used a calf one when I was having plantar fascitis and achilles issues with tennis. It felt good.
  • Hubs is a certified swift water rescue technician, (and ropes rescue/instructor) just because software engineers might need that? No, just because he’s so NOT a nerd.

All right, I’ve done enough brain dumping on you for one day. I’ll leave you with this photo of the gorgeous American Beautyberry photo from my yard this morning. This is my favorite plant ever! They’re berry lovely, don’t you think?

American Beauty Berry
American Beautyberry

The Ups, The Downs and The Sidewinding

The other day, I wrote about my victory and the smaller “Pants Dance.” That was obviously an “up” day, as it should have been. There’s just something about that feeling of looking at that pair of pants in the front of the closet that you know (by the size on the label) should have fit when you bought them, but didn’t even come close. After months of taunting, every, single day and trying them on every so often you get the urge and they button right up, without a strain or too much stretch.Yes, good day.

Yesterday, I almost wrote about the Old Pants Dance. I had a client function out in the middle of nowhere. You know, or if you’re not a Texan, a boots and jeans tromp around  a ranch function. My first thought was, “Oh no! I think I dumped all my jeans because they were too small.” (Yes, I did one of those clean outs in my frustration about a year ago… ) I wondered if I would have time to go buy a pair before the function. At the 11th hour, I remembered that I had stuck a box of something in a cabinet under the TV (go figure). Boom! There they were. I grabbed the first pair and nervously put them on. I noticed that they were the smaller pair, the ones that were always the tightest. What? Button. Zip. Done. Wow! The happy feeling of accomplishment made me feel warm and fuzzy! I did a little booty shake for the hubs and pointed at my jeans (he was on a conference call) I got a grin and a thumbs up and was out the door. I was feeling pretty good.

A coworker commented when I got there that I was looking great! Happy (inside) dance. Then, it happened. Someone asked for a photo. We all got together, and posed. Yay! I handed over my phone and got a picture too. Afterall, I was in those jeans again! Woohoo. Then, I looked at the photo. You know that thing that happens to a baloon when you are blowing it up and you accidentally let go? It flies around erratically and makes a funny noise. Yes, that happened. The reality of how far I’ve got to go slapped me, twenty-seven point two pounds, to be precise, slapped me upside my head. I was reeling sideways.

By the time I got home, I was feeling a bit down, frustrated and tired.

And, this is why I love being ADD. This morning, I was back to happy and good again. I dug back in to that same basket of smaller clothes (still under the TV), grabbed a pair of khaki pants and threw them on. These were even loose in the waist. What? (GRIN) Just a happy reminder to me that I have come so far. In that photo, I failed to notice that I

I was apprehensive about buying yellow shoes, but somehow, they make me happy! Happy dance!
I was apprehensive about buying yellow shoes, but somehow, they make me happy! Happy dance!

work with lovely, beautiful people that I’m happy to hang out with. It was so good to treat our clients to a fun outing with BBQ and beer.

I’m happy to report that I’m back to up. Mostly. I put on my yellow happy shoes. That always helps!

Before and During Photos… (Oh, the horror!)

Dee, my awesome Ideal Protein coach, texted me this photo.

Humiliation at it's best. Before and During. Just a little past half way there.
Humiliation at it’s best. Before and During. Just a little past half way there.

YES, the before shot in her office is so sad! I’m definitely wearing a potato sack that is completely unflattering, but sadly, real. The photo on the right was snapped a week or two ago for my “Yeah, It’s A Crutch” post. Frankly, I don’t recognize that person in the orange, bless her. So, here’s to completely humiliating yourself online. How’s that for a #TBT?

 

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