Staying Healthy: Eating & Exercise (3/7-3/13)

Our shopping list goes through many changes as I work through a menu plan for around two weeks. The first week’s menu is set when I shop; the second one not so much but will get pulled together later. At least two more items will be removed from the list before we shop.

I cannot remember a time when I didn’t menu plan. I have gone through periods when I planned menus for a whole month, but I’ve usually planned a week at a time. I even menu planned and shopped accordingly during our travels. I remember a co-worked being astonished that I planned our weekly meals; I was equally astonished that she didn’t. 

I admit however to not always being very good at it. In the past, I would plan, create a shopping list, and then still find myself stopping off at the store because I had forgotten to purchase a needed ingredient or supply. Of course those stops often meant I was also picking up other things that I really didn’t need. These days I am much, much better at planning. I check for proteins that we’ve got in the freezer, then go through my pantry and refrigerator to figure out what I can create from what we have on hand. The only thing that gets filled in between shopping trips are fruits and vegetables from our weekly visit to the farmers’ market. The goal is to create a menu that incorporates a variety of healthy, tasty, and satisfying meals including one without meat.

 
Sunday pot roast

Sunday: Mississippi Pot Roast; mashed potatoes; steamed green beans; olive oil orange cake

I added bok choy this time – it was delicious!

Monday: Chicken soup with vegetables and brown rice; olive oil orange cake

One of my top three sandwiches!

Tuesday: French dip sandwiches; mashed potatoes; coleslaw; olive oil orange cake

Subuta, served with rice, is gluten free. On its own it’s fairly low calorie too.

Wednesday: Subuta (sweet & sour pork) with steamed rice; olive oil orange cake

Cheeseburger in paradise.

Thursday: Cheeseburgers; olive oil orange cake

The roasted vegetables were red pepper, zucchini, and onion.

Friday: Roasted vegetable mini pizzas with pesto; pumpkin cake

Just four ingredients: grilled fresh fish, shredded cabbage, corn tortillas, and mango-peach salsa. Easy to put together, and very satisfying.

Saturday: Grilled fish tacos with peach-mango salsa; pumpkin cake

Next week’s menu, in no particular order:

  • Chili pork burritos
  • Mabo nasu
  • Spaghetti with meat sauce
  • Chicken risotto
  • Loco moco
  • Red pepper & tomato soup with ham sandwiches
  • Mini pizzas
Storm after storm after storm have rolled across the island this week.

Last week was a difficult one for walking. We did our regular walk last Sunday, then took our day off on Monday. On Tuesday we headed up to the park even though it was very overcast, and got in around a mile and a half before having to quit. Wednesday was stormy all day with high winds, thunder and lightening, and rain, rain, and more rain. It was still raining on Thursday morning, but the sun came out in the afternoon and it was actually somewhat hot and humid when it was time for our walk, a taste of the weather we’ll start to experience in only a few weeks. Friday’s weather was absolutely NUTS – I’ve never seen more rain fall in my life. Saturday was also miserable: wet, windy, and cold, but we caught a break late Sunday afternoon and were able to get in a 50 minute walk before the rain started up again. We knew to avoid the forest paths at the park because of the mud, but there was still plenty of mud out on some of the paths, and our route was a mess in many places. We’ve always known we’d probably get a week or more of rain this spring, but we’ve got our fingers crossed that this especially nasty round of weather doesn’t last much longer.

The sunshine that showed up this past Thursday was a real treat. We wish it had lasted longer.

I’ve still managed to lose another two pounds in the past weeks, so I think that’s four pounds gone out of the ten I want to lose this year. It was very motivating to go through my cold weather clothes last week and find that so many pieces of my former too-tight clothing now fit as they should. I still see a big girl when I look in the mirror, but the way my clothing fits now tells me that’s not true any more. Brett is also losing weight and finding his clothes growing loose. When he met with the surgeon last week he was weighed and we knew from the result that our home scale is very accurate – nice to know!

8 thoughts on “Staying Healthy: Eating & Exercise (3/7-3/13)

  1. Fish tacos are one of my favorite things, and I need to make them at home again. When we eat out (which is never now…only occasional takeout), they’re the first thing I look for. But I’ve had so many that are just OK, I need to dig out my recipe and make them again. Most restaurants use breaded fried fish – not my favorite. Yours look simple and delicious.

    Isn’t it interesting what we see in the mirror? You look great and I’m sure you feel much better with the weight gone. I’m finding myself much more motivated now that the weather is turning (as usual). We’re walking most days and I have much more energy.

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    1. These fish tacos are so easy and light – just four ingredients. We buy our salsa, but when we can get fresh mangos or peaches I make it fresh. I have never been all that crazy about breaded fried fish in tacos, but the grilled fish brings a wonderful flavor to the dish.

      I was so conditioned when I was young to thinking of myself as fat that it sort of became a self-fulfilling prophecy, and I still see the “fat girl” in the mirror no matter my weight because in my mind I’m not “perfect,” but I’m working on that.

      I cannot wait for this awful, crazy weather to be over so we can consistently get out and walk. We were hoping to up our distance this month, but these days we’re lucky to get in 2/3 of the distance we were walking earlier because of the rain.

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  2. We do menu planning too. I try to convince working mothers that it will help them. Not only in saving money but in the evening when you’re brain dead, you don’t have to think what to cook. You don’t have to plan or shop for missing ingredients. Just cook. We don’t menu plan all days now, as with just the two of us, we always have leftovers if the boys don’t drop by for dinner. So get two or three dinners out of one night of cooking.

    You take good photos of your meals. I can never seem to get the angle or lighting right.

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    1. Menu planning, to me anyway, makes everything simpler. As you say, you don’t have to think about what to make, but you can also keep yourself from falling into a rut and having to make the same things over and over because of what’s in your pantry. Menu planning makes shopping easier and saves money. And, like you, meals can be created that provide leftovers so that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every night if you don’t want to.

      My new photo “secret” is to get up close and shoot at an angle, if possible. The lighting in the house is awful for photos, but I’ve found the up-close and angled shots get what light there is bouncing off the food rather than putting it in shadows.

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  3. The fish tacos look yummy. I come from the fill the pantry and freezer (usually with loss leaders) and plan from that, but we were and are a family that literally eats everything…..These days I am making adjustments though

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    1. I keep a full pantry too, and do my menu planning from that, but the planning lets me know what else I need to pick up, and makes sure things get used without us falling into a rut. Pantry planning works for many people though.

      The fish tacos are easy and good. And light too, especially since the fish is grilled and not fried.

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  4. The fish taco recipe is a keeper! We used mango salsa as we could not find mango-peach and it went beautifully with fresh cod.

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    1. This was originally only a summer recipe for us because I used to only make the salsa from scratch with peaches or mangoes, and we only had a charcoal grill so no winter cooking. But now, with a gas grill and mango-peach salsa available year round, we’re enjoying these year round as well. They are yummy, very easy and quick to put together, and very healthy too.

      Anyway, I’m glad you like them!

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