Today It Starts

Today J and I are going on a low carb and sugar diet. We’ve eaten about a small army’s worth of tortilla chips lately so we’re taking some time off. Gretchen Rubin mentioned in “Better Than Before” how she cut carbs, which she didn’t like much anyways, and lost a ton of weight.

I’ve also started and am loving “Unprocessed,” about a woman who didn’t eat processed food for an entire year. I really want to try baking my own bread sometime so I can know that it’s not full of wood chips.

Going “no carb,” though, is just not in the books for me because literally all of the food I like has carbs in it. Fruit? Yes. Yogurt? Yes. Fuck. 

I googled Tim Ferris’ Slow Carb Diet recipes and they all look pretty heinous. Like, really gross. So, if you know of any low-carb recipes that I have to try, let me know! Also, if you have any tips from your experiences with this kind of eating, let me know.

As a friend would say: Here. We. Go.

Last Week’s Workouts

I was going to start a completely separate blog to write about this stuff, but I decided against it because I don’t want to have 7 million blogs on the internet. So, click the “read more” link to hold me accountable and see how I did.

My plan was:

Monday: Ashtanga/Iyengar Yoga
Tuesday: Running + sit ups
Wednesday: Running + sit ups + Ashtanga/Iyengar yoga
Thursday: Running + sit ups
Friday: Rest?
Saturday: Vinyasa
Sunday: Rest or Run?

It turned out like this:

Monday: Ashtanga/Iyengar Yoga (75 minutes)
Tuesday: Running (22 minutes) + abs + hand weights
Wednesday: Running (20 minutes)
Thursday: Pilates (60 minutes) + abs
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Vinyasa (95 minutes)
Sunday: Running (20 minutes or 2 miles) – this killed because we started with running up a hill. 

I’ve been doing pretty good with eating. I’m really trying to limit my snack and eat as many vegetables as possible. I realized that eating chopped veggies and guac instead of tortilla chips leaves me feeling a lot better. Duh. 

How were your workouts last week?

Food Stuffs

Let’s talk about all the things that I’ve been eating recently that have made me feel awful. 

For starters, I’ve realized that I snack too much at work. We have mini Snickers and Hershey’s nuggets and M&M’s just lying around. Initially, I was pretty addicted these. I’ve pretty much toned it down to 2 pieces per day. But I’m still reaching for the junk even though I’m not hungry. It’s just there, right? So, it’d be rude not to partake. I made the decision a few weeks ago to start ordering apples, so apples and peanut butter is a go-to snack of mine in an attempt to keep away from the shitty chocolate.

I think coffee may be making my head hurt, too. I only drink one or two cups a day, but I need to drink more water. (Which I have been, but I need to drink more because: hot weather.)

But let’s talk about the baguette I ate last week. 

I’d packed my lunch – super healthy grilled chicken and zucchini noodles with pesto sauce. But I was like, “it’s shark week and I’d like something heartier to go alone with all of that healthy shit,” so I went to Eataly, which is conveniently located across the street from my office, and walked around until I found a small counter that sold baguettes for two dollars. I immediately bought one and I ate about half of it with lunch and throughout the afternoon.

When I say I felt like trash for the rest of the afternoon, it is a complete understatement. I felt like steaming hot trash that had just been bathed in a tub of burnt olive oil.

I don’t have celiacs. I’m not glutarded. I’m not giving up all bread because bread is great. But based on the complete meltdown that my body had last week when I consumed a stupid amount of baguette, I think I should lay off the bread that’s void of any nutrition at all. 

I think I could’ve trained myself not to be OK with feeling like shit after eating bread and pasta. I used to consume a ton of pasta and I ate regular bread all the time. Usually when I buy bread, I’ll buy Ezekiel, which is gluten free, and the last time I made actual pasta (and the only time that I even have a faint memory of) was July 4th. After J bought the Inspiralizer for me, I haven’t made an ounce of pasta. 

But lesson learning is never easy so I had to eat bread once again on Saturday night. More specifically, garlic bread. These were small pieces and there were four of them. I only ate two because of The Baguette Incident. Luckily, showing some restraint paid off and these didn’t actually make me want to start clawing at my stomach. Still, I was incredibly sad to be leaving two gleaming pieces of garlic bread behind. This is a feeling that I will have to learn to deal with. I hate wasting food. 

The margaritas I had later that night had zero effect on me. Nor did the tortilla chips (thank goodness these are GF) and queso. 

I have a love/hate relationship with my consciousness around food now. I notice when things make me feel like dying and I make a conscious decision not to fuck around with those foods anymore. This is for the best, but it also sucks. Who doesn’t love a good bread basket?

Aside from cheap chocolate and bread, what isn’t making me feel shitty? Fruits, vegetables, and smoothies. Pretzels are toeing the line right now. I would really, really, really like to eat a burger or pizza right now but I don’t want a food hangover. 

I made this dish last night, complete with spiralized sweet potatoes, red pepper, green pepper, yellow squash, a little bit of cheese and spicy black beans. It was delicious and I didn’t want to die after. I have to start making more dishes like this again. 

Digestion

Last year when I read Skin Cleanse by Adina Grigore, I kept track of everything I put in my mouth for three days straight. Not just that I ate a banana for a snack or pizza for lunch. I wrote down those three Reese’s Pieces and the two grapes that I consumed too. This was an attempt to figure out what made my digestive system feely shitty and probably wasn’t doing my skin any favors either. 

Ever since I did that, I was acutely aware of when I was feeling bloated or just shitty after a meal in general. But did I write it down? Oh no. That would make way too much sense.

But now? I’ve decided to do it again. I created a document on my iPhone and I’m going to keep track of all the times when I’m feeling shitty after a meal and what exactly I ate before I started feeling that way. 

This decision was made because I felt shitty after lunch today. I had homemade turkey chili on top of zucchini noodles, with a side of guacamole and five tortilla chips (weird, I know, but that’s what I ate) and a pomegranate seltzer. I’m very, very bloated now. I think it might be the seltzer, which blows because I love seltzer and we keep it in the office. It tastes better than water, but it’s not filled with sugar like soda is. 

I’ve never done elimination from my diet before but I’m curious to see what I find out. If I can eliminate the foods that make me feel shitty it’ll be for the better (duh). 

I’d encourage everyone to do this if you ever feel crappy after a meal. 

Vegan in the Village

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Last Wednesday, I typed ‘healthy’ into Yelp for a very specific range of streets in the West Village and one of the first choices to pop up was a casual dining place called By Chloe. I’d never heard of it before, but I’m always open to try to occasional vegan restaurant and Kristen, whom I was meeting to see Company XIV’s Snow White with later in the evening, is always down to be casually vegan, so off we went (or met, rather).

This place is obviously incredibly popular among the NYU crowd as the line was to the door when I got there and eventually it went out the door and down the street. I usually really enjoy myself at vegan restaurants if I don’t go too crazy (no fake cheese for me, thank you). I had the spicy Thai salad (it was ginormous) and a small side of butternut/something else soup. They were both delicious. They need to work on their portion control though.

Anyways, it was a really lovely meal and experience. I would maybe go back but not if the line is still out the door. 100% recommended for vegans and non-vegans who like eating vegetables.

I’ve read Skinny Bitch and it was compelling. I know how horrible the dairy industry is. I’ve watched Food Inc, and Forks Over Knives, and Food Matters (was that the name? I don’t remember). The truth is I never buy milk. If it’s in my fridge it’s because I needed it for one very specific recipe and now the rest of it is slowly going bad, or my boyfriend bought it because there’s only so many times he can stomach the coconut milk that I buy. I buy mozzarella occasionally, and eggs maybe once a month from a local place.

The truth is: I like eating meat. Especially chicken, and the occasional burger (I don’t actually like steak). And I also occasionally like dairy. Mozzarella is delicious and whipped cream makes the taste of coffee bearable.

I think the vegan dairy alternatives to cheese are just gross. And they’re also filled with a whole bunch of other shit that is unnecessary to be ingesting if you just eat a piece of natural fucking cheese. Here’s the ingredient list for Daiya dairy-free cheese: “Filtered Water, Tapioca Starch, Palm Fruit Oil, Expeller Pressed non GMO
Canola Oil and/or Expeller Pressed non GMO Safflower Oil, Coconut Oil,
Pea Protein Isolate, Natural Vegan Flavors, Vegetable Glycerine, Brown
Rice Syrup, Sea Salt, Yeast Extract, Xanthan Gum, Lactic Acid (Vegan,
for flavor), Annatto (for color) Carrageenan, Titanium Dioxide (a
naturally occurring mineral), Vegan Enzyme.”

What? Ew. Give me regular mozzarella cheese or give me death. So, while I totally enjoyed my experience at By Chloe, I’m not going vegan anytime soon.

Future Obsession: Inspiralizer

I first learned about the Inspiralizer instagram account from Well & Good or Gabby Bernstein’s Instagram. I don’t remember which, but it was one of those. I received a tiny, hand-held vegetable spiralizer for the holidays and I’m still getting the hang of it and learning how to use it.

I’ve been watching a lot of Ali’s (founder of the Inspiralizer website and blog) videos and last night I made the baked chicken parm with zucchini noodles (and some quinoa spaghetti) that she makes for dinner in this video

It was so good and even Justin didn’t completely hate the zucchini noodles. After we watched a few more of her videos together, he asked if I’d really use the Inspiralizer and I said yes, so he insisted on ordering one for me.

Now we can eat noodles made of vegetables all the time. I’m especially excited to make this shrimp scampi and carrot noodles.   

I’m very, very excited to spiralize all my vegetables. 

Guys, eat more vegetables. Seriously, my diet has been SO CLEAN over the last couple of weeks. Sure, I had a few beers over the weekend but that gets a pass, right? I mean, I went to Cascabel and got a quinoa and kale salad instead of a taco. Major restraint showed there. 

Fruits, veggies, eggs, chicken, brown rice, Ezekiel bread, and peanut butter have been my food staples as of late and I feel awesome. 

Food Stuffs

I lost about 40 pounds around 4 years ago. I started limiting my calorie intake and being much more active. I also started using MyFitnessPal, which is a rockstar app that you should definitely downtown if you’re trying to be healthy. You can insert your height, weight, weight loss goal per week, and what kind of lifestyle you lead.

I’ve apparently had mine set on a “nonactive” lifestyle and wanting to lose 2 pounds per week for a while now which was telling me to eat about 1,240 calories.  

As a result, I’ve been starving all winter. Like, legit starving. I spoke to one of my best friends the other day who works in the medical field and when I asked her if I was eating enough she gasped and said absolutely now.

I changed my settings on MyFitnessPal to an active lifestyle and I only set it to 1 pound a week. My new calorie goal? 1,840. I’ve been much less hungry over the last few days. 

There was no point to this. I just wanted to put it out there incase anyone else finds themselves hungry this winter. Check your app settings 😉

My weekend in food, in no particular order of awesomeness

  • After an ass-kicking vinyasa class, I grabbed brunch with Ben at Harlem Food Bar on 114th and Frederick Douglas. It was awesome. The food was amazing (I had the bacon/blue cheese/apple salad, and Ben had the burger and sweet potato fries), the prices pretty moderate, and the staff was SO nice. Our waiter saw that Ben didn’t have a case on his iPhone and felt compelled to bring over his super-cracked iPhone to show him what might happen if he didn’t get a case. Not pictured are the fried mac’n’cheese balls which were also amazing (just not photogenic). 
  • On Saturday night, I went to Forlini’s, an old school Italian restaurant in Chinatown, for a jovial gathering of Coach’s (aka Matt) friends for his 32nd birthday. I had the chicken parmesan. It was delicious.
  • Today I went going to my best friend and her husband’s apartment in Forest Hills to binge-watch more of season 5 of The Walking Dead. I knew we’d be ordering Chinese food for lunch so I brought dessert from Levain Bakery. I brought two chocolate chip-walnut cookies, one dark chocolate/peanut butter cookie, and a chocolate chip brioche. They were, of course, delicious.
  • The aforementioned Chinese food. When my friends order Chinese food for delivery, they like to order a selection and lots of extra. Fifty dollars later, we had quite the selection of entrees, soups,  and rices. To give you some perspective of how much there was, they included 8 forks in the bag. They thought we ordered enough for 8 people. Yes, we felt fat. (In our defense though, we had LOTS of leftovers.)