Melting away the baby weight: Fun ways to burn 100 calories!

It’s happening. I’m finally writing about baby weight and what I’m doing to get rid of it.

Let’s recap… I had been eating healthy for about 9 months prior to getting pregnant, but I had taken a break from exercise. I was at my lowest weight that I had been for the last 3 years or so… give or a take a few pounds (blame the holidays!). Everything I read said that if you had been exercising prior to getting pregnant, you could safely continue, but you shouldn’t start a new regimen.

Note: Always ask your doctor!

I ate fairly healthy throughout my pregnancy, continued to move and do things for myself, and weighed in +42 lbs. when we checked in at Labor & Delivery to be induced. Not too shabby!

After giving birth, the weight starting melting off pretty darn quickly. Thank you, breastfeeding! Now that my little one is crawling and enjoying walks in the stroller in the evening I am becoming more interesting in adding a little extra fitness to our daily routine.

Check out this calorie calculator to find out how long you need to push your stroller to burn 100 calories! It takes me 36 minutes to hit that 100 mark. That’s a great amount of time to spend on an evening walk.

If you’re not a stroller-pusher… check out these other ways to hit that 100 mark. I don’t know about you, but I’d choose 38 minutes of shopping over 9 minutes of jogging ANY DAY!

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Have you tried Chobani’s Simply 100 packs? We are big time yogurt fans and are definitely adding these easy snacks to our grocery list. Gimme that Blueberry Cookie Crumble!

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WW Update: Week 19 Results

Friday and feelin’ good!

For week 19, I lost 2 pounds for a total of 27 pounds lost.
I am 13 pounds away from my “40 pounds lost by September 1st” goal.

Wow, I can’t believe it has been 19 weeks. Seems like such a short time. I’ve almost hit that 30 lb. mark and I expect to be there in two more weeks.

My staples for this week have been:
– Bananas! B-A-N-A-N-A-S! (Gwen Stefani reference)

My saving grace this week:
– Portion control. Again. This week I ate a lot of what everybody else ate, but relied on keeping my portions under control! Seems like it worked.

Featured meal this week:
Nothing new.

I have been loving frozen bananas with chocolate and peanut butter. Not the healthiest, I know, but it’s my substitute for ice cream right now. I peel a banana, spread 1 T of peanut butter on top, and melt 1 oz. of milk chocolate chips and spread them over top. I pop it in the freezer and wait til the banana becomes chill and the chocolate is nice and hard. Yum!

Eating out this week:
We celebrated Jeremy’s new job by having a family dinner at an Italian restaurant on Sunday. I didn’t hold back… I had all the bread and dipping oil, salad dressing, and creamy pasta that I wanted. The did two things well. 1. I split an entree with my mom and 2. I listened to my body and stopped eating when I was full. I took home leftovers, but let someone else eat them.

Working out this week:
Not my best week in this department.
– Tuesday: Walked 5 miles at Wilson’s Creek

No Zumba or PiYO this week because the instructor was out of town. I attempted to go to the assistant instructor’s class on Thursday, but I figured out that they had bumped it to Wednesday… an empty parking lot was my clue. But hey, at least I got in my car and went!

Visible changes this week:
Less belly fat.

Goals for next week:
Track every little snack, no matter how few points it is.

 

WW Update: Week 18 Results

Can you believe it’s Friday already? It seems like yesterday I was writing my week 17 reflection.

For week 18, I gained 0.4 pounds for a total of 25 pounds lost. (I am +0.4 from my lowest point at Week 17)
I am 15 pounds away from my “40 pounds lost by September 1st” goal.

No surprise here. After a monster week (for me) last week, I didn’t have high expectations for week 18. I didn’t use that as an excuse, but still… maybe I did?

My staples for this week have been:
– Loving fresh peaches and lots of bananas.
– Garden fresh cucumbers. I like to eat them with Laughing Cow Cheese Wedges. Yum yum and only 1 pp for the wedge, and obviously the cucumber is free!

My saving grace this week:
– Portion control. I’ll give myself a pat on the back for keeping things under control.

Featured meal this week:
I did not make any new recipes this week, but my mom did fix one of my favorites for dinner last night: Zucchini Bake! I don’t know the recipe by heart and can’t find anything online that’s similar. I’ll give you the gist: It’s like the inside of a stuffed pepper, baked and then served over brown rice, with melted cheese on top. I skipped out on the rice and ate it with an ounce of fat free cheddar on top. Savory, a little spicy, and super delicious!

Eating out this week:
Not too shabby! My only downfall was El Rodeo on Wednesday. I have a love/hate relationship with El Rodeo.

First I should say that I am a sucker for a good Mexican restaurant. Crispy, warm, salty chips served with fresh salsa? I’m in! When the hubby and I moved to Bolivar a couple years ago we fell in love with the local Mexican joint. The prices were good, services was quick, and the food was always good. So good that we ate there a lot. Maybe once a week? It was our solution to a busy work day (for me) and a busy school day (for Jeremy). We could get in and get out.

There were many nights when I huffed and puffed my way up the stairs to our 3rd floor apartment after dining at El Rodeo. We over-ate. Every time.

So after that sob story you’re probably thinking, why in the world would you go back there? Good question! We went to Kansas City on Wednesday and El Rodeo is on the way. We stopped in for early dinner and it was just as delicious as always. This time I didn’t eat my entire meal – so that was a win! I ended up not being hungry for the rest of the evening.

I should also mentioned that we had pizza and a calzone for dinner last Friday night at my aunt and uncle’s pizza shop.

Working out this week:
– 5-mile walk in the ridiculous heat on Saturday afternoon
– Zumba Monday night
– PiYO Thursday night (I’m sore this morning!)

I talked myself out of walking at Wilson’s Creek on my day off on Wednesday. Not proud.

Visible changes this week:
What’s up, biceps? PiYO is totally paying off.

Goals for next week:
Track everyday. Walk at Wilson Creek at least twice. Try a new recipe!

 

WW Update: Week 16 & 17 Results

Hi there! Due to last Friday being a holiday I chose not to do a blog post. And, quite frankly I stunk it up at the end of week 16 and didn’t have much to show for. I promise week 17 went much better. Keep reading if you’d like more details!

For week 16, I gained 0.8 pounds for a total of 20.6 pounds lost. (I am +1.6 from my lowest point at Week 12)

I ate great for most of the week but Thursday came and I had a big time craving for pad thai. Then on Friday I followed up with Chinese for lunch. Two sodium-rich meals ruined me! After the 4th of July festivities I recommitted myself to this weight loss thing and beating the hump I’ve been struggling to get over the past 4 weeks. That’s where I’ll end my discussion of week 16.

For week 17, I lost 4.8 pounds for a total of 25.4 pounds lost.

Adios, 4 week slump. I kicked your ass!

My staples for this week have been:
– Fresh fruits and veggies.
– Lots of salads.

My saving grace this week:
– Weighing my food on a digital kitchen scale and sticking to proper portions.
– Not eating more than I need. For example, I came home last night from PiYO and was super hungry. I don’t eat dinner before my 7 p.m. classes. My parents had grilled pork chops, so I trimmed the fat off of one and weighed it. I steamed one yellow squash, and then started to cut a cucumber to eat with a Laughing Cow Cheese Wedge. I stopped myself before I sliced the cucumber and thought… am I really hungry enough for this cucumber? Maybe I should wait until I finish my pork chop and squash and then if I’m still hungry I’ll eat it. Well guess what, I was full after my meat and veggie and stopped eating. It worked.

Featured meal this week:
Yellow Squash Casserole is rocking my world!

Photo courtesy of Google Images

Eating out this week:
We ate at Olive Garden, but I ordered soup and salad to keep myself in line. A couple salads from Hyvee this week. Can’t get enough of their fresh options on the salad bar!

Working out this week:
-Missed Zumba on Monday because I was running late and I hated it!
-5 a.m. PiYO on Tuesday & 5-mile walk at Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield on Tuesday. I don’t think I’ve ever worked out twice in one day! That’s a win!
– PiYO on Thursday night.

Visible changes this week:
Exciting news – I finally took my rings in to get sized. I had been putting it off until I couldn’t stand it anymore and I hit that mark on Wednesday. As I was typing at my desk, my rings were flying all over the place. It’s strange how much weight I’ve lost in my hands. Before sizing, my engagement ring was a 7.5 and my wedding band was a 7. When I get my rings back in 2 weeks, they will be 5.75 in size. What, what!??! See ya later, sausage fingers.

Goals for next week:
Continue to eat healthy, attend Zumba and PiYO, and walk at Wilson’s Creek. We’re planning to walk this evening.

Motivation and new goals:
Like most women, I believe that there’s nothing better than a new outfit. When you feel good about yourself, you are more likely to achieve goals and results. Recently, I have found Fabletics and am loving how a new workout get-up can make me want to get moving!

Fabletics is a subscription-type site for athletic wear. The clothes are unique, well-made, and fashionable. Kate Hudson is the big name behind the brand.

Here’s how it works: You sign up and get a great deal on your first outfit. Each month you’ll be emailed new outfits that fit your preference. You can purchase separates or outfits… I tend to go for outfits, or you can purchase nothing for the month. You have the choice to purchase or skip before the 5th of the month. If you do neither, your credit card will be charged $50 and that money will be waiting for you in your bank. You will be able to spend it later. There are benefits for me if you click my link and then make a purchase. Here’s my referral link: http://www.fabletics.com/invite/andreagraddy/

The first outfit I purchased. Two pieces for $24.95 and free shipping! (discounted because it was my first buy)
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I love these leggings. They are well made. I was worried about them being hot because they are a thick material, however the material does a great job wicking sweat away from your body.

I cant wait for this outfit to arrive in my mailbox. It will be perfect for PiYO! All 3 pieces for $59.95.

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I purchased a new accessory and wore it for the first time yesterday. Junk headbands are popular among runner and Crossfitters to keep sweat from your eyes. I had been having a horrible time with this and was so happy to hear numerous recommendations for these headbands. I bought my first one and love it! After working out last night my headband was soaked in sweat. That means it was working! Here’s a post-workout selfie I snapped showing off my Junk!

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The last thing I want to touch on before this post gets too terribly long is setting a new goal for myself. Since I hit the 25 pound mark I’m wondering, what’s next?

My new goal is to lose 14.6 pounds before September 1st. That gives me about 7 weeks. I will need to work hard and eat clean, but I know I can do it. That will put me at 40 pounds lost in 6 months! For some added motivation, I’ve done a little digging through my photos on Facebook and found what I believe to me photos of me at this new goal weight. These are from the summer of 2010. I was the ripe age of 20.

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Sunbathing at Lake Thunderbird in Cherokee Village, Arkansas.

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That’s me in the yellow and my beautiful sister-in-law Megan in the green.

 

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Hanging out with my work buddies “Little Jane” and Melodie. This may have been my last day working at the bank. I remember sucking in for this photo. Ha!

Here we go! 40 pounds lost or bust!

 

WW Update: Week 15 Results

Good morning! Another week has come and gone and here I am writing another update post.

For week 15, I lost 0 pounds for a total of 21.4 pounds lost. (I am +0.8 from my lowest point at Week 12)

Let me preface this post by saying I was REALLY hungry this week. I worked out a lot, which I know can contribute to being hungry, but my hunger was on another level! As you can see, I balanced out at the end of the week but I definitely was up and down all week. I shouldn’t have weighed myself everyday, but I did.

My staples for this week have been:
– Still eating wraps. I’ve started to like spicy mustard on them, just to add a kick!
– Lunch meals have been all over the place. Mostly loving Hyvee’s salad bar. I’m sick of the Healthy Choice Cafe Steamers at this point.
– Cookies, if I’m being honest.

My saving grace this week:
– Using salad plates. Have you noticed how big dinner plates are these days? Huge! The set my mom has are square and the dinner plates are at least 12″ squares. Ridiculous! I’ve been using the salad plates which are half the size. It limits how much food I put on my plate, and plus, my plate looks full. In most photos I post on the blog my food is actually on a salad plate.
– Getting my body moving.

Featured meal this week:
Healthy Chicken Parmesan! I found the recipe on Pinterest and made it for the hubby and I on Sunday. (If you’re not following me on Pinterest, do it now!) I’m sorry to say I cannot find the link to the recipe I used as a guide, but here’s something very similar: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2009/04/baked-chicken-parmesan.html.

Eating out this week:
Bad. I was bad. Let’s see, where do I begin? On Saturday, the hubby and I had a gift card to Chili’s so we went out for a fajita lunch. Not horrible, right? Well, like I’ve said before chips and salsa got the best of me. This time guacamole was to blame too. I was so miserable and incredibly full. After a cat nap that afternoon I proceeded to make Cake Batter Chocolate Cookies and Charleston Cheese Dip to munch on with friends. Bad ideas! At their house I also had a burger, beans, and veggies. I wasn’t hungry but I ate. Bad.

I had hibachi food on Tuesday. I’m proud of myself for ordering vegetables as my entree, but I ate ALL the rice and noodles. Carbs much? Bad.

Pizza was my weakness for dinner on Wednesday and then for lunch on Thursday. Bad.

Blah!

Working out this week:
– 2-hour Zumba on Saturday morning (70 mins Zumba, 50 mins toning) = feel the burn!
– Zumba on Monday night
– PiYO on Tuesday morning (5 a.m.) and Thursday night

I was kind of a work out beast and I’m proud of it.

Visible changes this week:
Nothing visible really, but I feel stronger. My push-up form is getting better and I’m feeling my muscles work hard as I do push-ups. My abs have been sore after PiYO this week and that is definitely one place where I need much more strength.

Speaking of the abdominal area, I have been having some strange stomach pains this week. After eating, my stomach feels hard and it hurts. I’m wondering if I am eating too much that I am uncomfortable and then when you add sore abs to the mix you get a recipe for one sore tummy. What do you all think?

My husband suggested I eat smaller meals, and add snacks into my eating routine.

Goals for next week:
Do 5am PiYO again. Track everyday.

 

WW Update: Weeks 13 & 14 Results

Yay, it’s Friday! It’s been 2 weeks since my last post to update you on my Weight Watchers progress. I’m running behind because I went to a work conference last week and then Jeremy and I were on vacation. I’ll spare you all the vacation details in this post, but if you’re curious about what we did, ate, saw, etc. read yesterday’s post here.

For the purposes of getting back on track with the weekly updates and trying to avoid a super long post, I’m changing up my topics. I’ll get back to the usual next week.

At the end of Week 14, I gained 0.8 pounds for a total of 21.4 pounds lost. So basically, after a week and a half of not following WW or working out, I gained weight. 2.6 pounds to be exact. I’ve lost 1.8 of that in the past 3 days as I’ve gotten back on track.

I’m not upset. Not at all really. Here are two reasons why I don’t regret anything I ate or not working out:

  1. It’s a Reward. I have lost over 20 lbs! That’s no small feat. I deserved the numerous glasses of wine, filet mignon, pasta, cheese, etc. It doesn’t hurt to stop and pat yourself on the back.
  2. It’s a Reminder. If I eat like shit, I feel like shit. If I eat great, I feel great. It’s as simple as that. I was sluggish and sleepy over vacation while I was eating like, well like I used to. It’s amazing that when you fuel your body with good stuff,  it performs better. Such a simple concept but one that’s so easy to ignore.

Week 13 Road Trip Snacks:
I did my best to pack healthy snacks, and I didn’t do too terribly bad.

  • I made Spicy Pretzels. It’s a WW recipe that the hubby and I really enjoyed. Here’s a little tip: use only half the amount of cayenne pepper. These little babies pack a PUNCH. Which makes you want to chug bottles of water = numerous potty breaks! 3 pp per 2/3 cup
  • Jell-O Sugar Free, Fat Free Chocolate Pudding, 2 pp per snack
  • Weight Watchers String Cheese, 1 pp per stick
  • Bananas, free!
  • Nutri-Grain cereal bars, 3 pp

Week 14 Meals:
I posted about our sausage, peppers, and onions dinner earlier this week. It was so tasty for just 8 pp!

Yesterday, Jeremy made dinner. A Pinterest find at that! Click here to view the original link for Tortellini Soup. Of course, we can never follow a recipe, so let me detail the small (but healthy) changes we made. We cooked this on the stove and opted to not sautee the veggies first. Therefore, no oil is needed! Also, we subbed the Parmesan for reduced fat cheddar.

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We used Louisa brand frozen tortellini. I used my digital food scale to measure out 4 oz. of cheese tortellinis. That’s right – picked the tortellinis out of the soup and put them on the scale. Hey, the details count! 4 oz. totaled 7 pp, and the rest of the soup is made from 0 point ingredients.

The soup is very filling. We both decided it’s a dish that we want to make again.

Working out this week:
– I went to my first PiYo class last night. It was the first time I had worked out in 2 weeks! (Minus, evening walks.) Boy oh boy, I am feeling the burn this morning! If you haven’t heard of PiYo, it’s is a fast-paced pilates and yoga strength training class set to popular music.

Goals for next week:
– Attend a 2-hour Zumba party on Saturday.
– Track everything I eat.

I’m looking forward to eating healthy and working out during Week 15. If any of you have done PiYo and have words of wisdom – PLEASE SHARE!

WW Update: Week 12 Results

Happy Friday, folks! This seems like it has been such a long week. I’m not sure if it’s because I hit the 20 lb. mark last week so I don’t have a landmark goal I’m trying super hard to hit… or it could be the fact that we are going on vacation next week and I am so excited to get away. (More on that later.) Let’s get to the good stuff.

For week 12, I lost 2.2 pounds for a total of 22.2 pounds lost.

I’ll be honest, I’m shocked that I lost 2 pounds. Well, more than 2 pounds. I had a really unhealthy weekend, but did eat healthy during the week. I was almost sure that the weekend screw ups were enough to keep me under a pound for the week.

My staples for this week have been:
– Minute Brown & Wild Rice cups. These are so easy it’s insane. Peel off the top, microwave for 1 minute, sit and enjoy your perfectly cooked rice! These are 5 points a piece for a BIG serving of rice. So filling and so flavorful (for rice). I like to sprinkle a little Mrs. Dash Original on top for an extra boost of flavor.
– Sweet potatoes with honey. Yum!

My saving grace this week:
– Chocolate! Major chocolate kick this week. I can have 2 Dove dark chocolate pieces for 2 points, which sounds fair to me. I savor these little morsels like I’ve never tasted chocolate before.

Featured meal this week:
Let’s talk tacos. My mom makes tacos a lot, which is cool with me because I love tacos. I’ve learned that I can make a regular old meal Weight Watchers friendly, while still eating what everyone else at the table is eating.

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I’ll break down what you’re seeing on my plate:

  • 2 Fat Free Flour Tortillas (I buy the taco size) — 1 PP
  • Kidney beans (far superior to refried beans) — 1/3 c. on each tortilla for a total of 3 PP
  • Ground beef with taco seasoning (80/20) — 1/3 c. split between tortillas — 3 PP
  • Shredded Cheddar (if I would have had reduced-fat on hand I would have used it – note to self: never let yourself run out of it) — 1 oz. for 3 PP
  • Torn baby spinach leaves — 0 PP
  • On The Border Salsa – Medium — 0 PP
  • Fresh cut cilantro from my mom’s plant! — 0 PP

That’s a total of 10 points for dinner and I was STUFFED. Before I started Weight Watchers I would have used way more cheese and would have also had sour cream and I would have never bought FF tortillas.

Eating out this week:
What didn’t I eat this weekend? We had pizza at the Rooker’s on Friday and followed it up with Pineapple Whip for dessert. On Saturday, we ate at Rib Crib. Jeremy ordered sliced brisket, while I ordered a smoked chicken salad. We each ate half then swapped. Later on we went to a concert at a bar and I didn’t drink (win!). And, on Sunday we went out for Mexican after church. I ordered mixed fajitas, which came with rice, beans, all the toppings. Of course, I ate an ungodly amount of chips and salsa. It was so filling that I never ate dinner.

Working out this week:
– Zumba on Monday & Thursday.
– Walked on Sunday and Tuesday. Jeremy and I have been walking together and get excited because we know we’ll see some type of animal on each walk. We’ve had a few deer sightings and there are rabbits galore.

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Visible changes this week:
I caved and bought some new clothes. It’s very exciting to be in a smaller size across the board! Noticed smaller wrists this week. Is that weird?

Goals for next week:
This is where it gets tricky. I will be gone Monday and half of the day Tuesday to a conference for work. The office manager and myself (marketing coordinator) are treated to a delicious steak dinner by our boss. I am not skipping out on free steak and wine. Not going to happen!

Then, Jeremy and I are leaving for vacation on Tuesday afternoon. We are driving to Charlotte, NC so that he can attend the APTA NEXT Conference. I plan on doing some sunbathing at the pool during the day. I’m planning to visit nearby art museums as well. After his conference we’re going to drive to the coast and have a beach day before driving home.

I’ve started a list of WW-friendly road trip snacks. I know that I’m not going to track everyday, that’s a given. I think I’ll be okay if I have healthy breakfasts and lunches while we’re on vacation.

(Goals I set for last week that I achieved: Zumba and walking!)

Inspiration:
Miranda Lambert = perfection! I’ve always loved her for being herself, whether people like it or not. Her recent weight loss is also an inspiration.

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I thought of Miranda Lambert this morning as I was eating a donut to celebrate National Donut Day. I thought to myself, would Miranda eat a donut? I convinced myself that the answer was yes and that I should feel guilt-free about my long john with caramel icing and chocolate chips. And, I do!

Happy Friday! Happy Donut Day! Have a great week!