It’s been a while since I’ve posted (what’s new, right?), but I wanted to let you all know about the challenge I’m doing right now. It’s called the Love Your Body series and was started by the lovely ladies at Tone It Up! It goes from now (started at the beginning of January but it’s never too late to join!) and goes until Valentine’s Day, just in time to be super hot for your valentine!
Once you sign up for the challenges, you’ll receive emails with challenge updates, links to new workouts, recipes, etc. There are also lots of amazing prizes to win by checking in with the trainers on social media. I’ve been trying my hardest to post my meals/workouts on Instagram and twitter to get my entries in! I’d LOVE to win a Victoria’s Secret sports bra – I haven’t been able to fit into their stuff for a few years now so it’d be a good goal. But even without the prizes, the challenge has been a lot of fun so far!
If you sign up for the Love Your Body challenge, let me know! I’d love to follow your updates!
I opened a can of pumpkin purée a few days ago and needed to find something to do with the remaining pumpkin left in my refrigerator.
Since I was already planning on making chia pudding this week, I decided to make it pumpkin chia pudding.
Last night, I mixed the following ingredients together so it’d be ready to take to work this morning:
1/4 cup chia seeds
1 cup vanilla coconut milk
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1 tablespoon maple syrup
Cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves to taste
By lunch today, the pudding had “gelled” nicely and was ready to eat. It was surprisingly delicious, and filling, with a sliced banana on top. I’ll definitely be making this again!
Since I was diagnosed with celiac disease last year, I’ve been wondering how the disorder has affected nearly every aspect of my health. For those who are unfamiliar with celiac disease, a common list of symptoms can be found here. Initially, heartburn, gas and other tummy issues were problems that made me suspect I was having issues with gluten. I’d eat a “healthy” turkey sandwich on wheat bread and feel like complete crap afterward (literally). After reading more about celiac disease, I discovered that many of my other health issues may be attributed to it. Past anemia, fatigue, depression, skin problems, irritability, and even my hypothyroidism may all be related to the disease. Apparently celiac disease is often associated with other autoimmune conditions, like my thyroid disorder.
I’ve been successfully maintaining a gluten-free diet for the past year, but I still feel like my energy levels are less than ideal. My dissatisfaction with the way I feel has led me to seek out a new primary care physician. My old doctor’s office has been fabulous over the years, and I’ve received excellent care from everyone on her staff. However, I’ve really been wanting to work with someone who might suggest some new therapies or practices to improve my health. Yesterday, I had my first appointment at an integrative medicine practice, which combines both alternative and conventional medicine. My appointment went really well! The doctor was attentive, listening to my concerns about long-term antidepressant usage, thyroid disorders, weight problems, etc., and I like that she was not entirely anti-pharmaceutical. She reassured me that my antidepressant is safe, and the supplements she recommended were nothing out of the ordinary (fish oil, CoQ10, multivitamin). She ran some pretty comprehensive blood work and I follow up in two weeks to discuss the results with her. I’m not expecting any miracles, but it’s refreshing to have a new set of eyes reviewing my medical history. I’m hoping that with some medication tweaks and lifestyle adjustments, I’ll get my energy levels back up where they should be.
I’ll let you know how my follow-up appointment goes. In the meantime, I’m going to really focus on taking the supplements she recommended and getting enough sleep. That one is such a struggle – I stay up way too late most nights!
I’ve been irritable lately.
I have no idea why I’m so cranky, but I know I don’t like it. To keep myself in check, I’ve been silently repeating “grace, elegance, compassion” in my head. It’s become a little mantra I use when I catch myself behaving or reacting in a less than desirable way. No matter the circumstance, I always want to conduct myself with those three things, especially compassion.
I really need to go grocery shopping. Before I was diagnosed with celiac disease, I would have just ordered a pizza or some Chinese food (crab rangoon and fried bean curd were my faves). Now that my options are more limited, it’s hardly worth paying $20 for some mediocre, unhealthy food. I’m not tempted by plain rice like I once was by cheesy pizza.
I’m going out for some drinks later and knew I needed to get something in my belly before meeting up with my friends. My last-minute, thrown together dinner was actually quite delicious!
Here’s what I did - Mashed a leftover baked sweet potato with about 1/4 of a banana, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, a sprinkle each of cinnamon, allspice, cloves and nutmeg, and a drizzle of real maple syrup. On the side, I had three slices of turkey bacon and a cheese stick.
I also had a glass of moscato. I’m not usually a fan of sweet wines, but I really like Barefoot moscato on these hot, early-fall evenings.
Since I know I won’t make it to the grocery store until tomorrow evening, and I’ll likely be hungover tomorrow morning, I planned ahead and roasted some carrots I had leftover from a recipe (I hate raw carrots) with two apples, coconut oil, and the same spices I used in my mashed sweet potato. It’s in the oven now and smells like heaven.
My long weekend is already off to a great start. The weather is gorgeous here in Virginia and my pets are loving it. Maestro is 16 and absolutely adores just sitting in the grass all day long.
I also got to spend some much-needed time with my grandfather this morning. He’s explaining how he put bait on my niece and nephew’s fishing rods in the photo here. ;) He was so proud. It makes me so happy that his great-grandchildren get to spend some time with him. He’s such an amazing man and has been a rock for my family. I’m so blessed!
There are some foods I just can’t eat in moderation, salted cashews being one of these.
I started out with just a small serving. I figured I’d have half the bag today, and then finish it off tomorrow.
Nope, I had the entire bag. And then I had another bag.
Yes, that’s correct. I just had 800 calories worth of cashews for my afternoon snack.
Portion control is for pussies.
While I prefer having something homemade for lunch (usually a salad or leftovers from the night before), sometimes I need something quick to grab on my way out the door… Especially on Monday mornings!
Amy’s makes my favorite healthy frozen meals. I love the wide variety of gluten free options, and I appreciate that they actually make me feel satisfied. Out of all the ones I’ve tried, my all-time favorite is the Tamale Verde with cheese. I’ve never tried the cheeseless version, but I can’t imagine it being better than the one with cheese.
I was going to include a picture of the meal itself, but it just wasn’t pretty, haha. Just take my word for it - Amy’s Tamale Verde (with cheese!) is the best.
After lunch this afternoon, I took a nice stroll to meet my mom who started working a few blocks from me this summer. We sat at the law enforcement memorial while she had her lunch and I had some coffee.
It’s an absolutely gorgeous day here in DC. Autumn is my favorite time of year, and I welcome it with open arms.