sustainableself

What's for dinner? How to transition from the drive through to home cooked meals

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How many times do you utter on the daily, what is for dinner? I used to find myself speaking these words nightly even after having my son Cooper. By the time dinner rolled around I was either too tired to cook or none of the options seemed appealing. Hence started the bad habit of grabbing something to eat or going out to eat on the daily.


This led to the second dreaded question of the day…..what’s for lunch? Often in a rush to get out the door in the morning, my lunch consisted of a mish mash of snacks or a frozen meal that I didn’t want. Both of which lead to “picking up something better” at work. I would be dead set on eating my lunch but at the moment of being offered something else I would bail. Does this story sound familiar?

With a lighter wallet, tighter pants and being tired of the daily stress of figuring out what to eat at the end of the day I resolved to do better.
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Everyone will agree that weekly food preparation leads to better choices, more meals at home and greater disposable income to spend elsewhere. The problem is that people either equate weekly food prep with chicken, broccoli and rice or complicated daily cooking. I used to read cooking light religiously….and then go out to eat because the recipe list was a mile long with eighteen different steps.   


How do you go from having a drawer full of take-out menus to having a fridge full of prepared meals? The first step is to create an awareness of what you are doing. In this case start to track how many times you are eating out in a week.  Start paying attention to how you feel each time after you eat out. Tracking is simpler than you think.


On a calendar of your choice make a note each time you eat out. Be sure you are including things like coffee (unless it is black), snacks, etc. At the end of the week pull out your visual calendar of how many meals and snacks you are eating out. This weekly visual is an eye opening endeavour. Our lives our so hurried and busy that we often forget what we have done from one day to the next.


For most to-go style restaurants their goal is profits, not health. Say what you want  but in the end there are a lot shortcuts being taken to make food tastier, while adding to the bottom line. This is a recipe for less than stellar ingredients.


After you build awareness and you see a need to change you can work on a plan. I think the most integral step of the plan is making food prep fun. You may not think these two go hand in hand but they can.


The way that you make food prep fun is that you find things that you enjoy the most and make them a part of a habit that you are trying to cement. For instance do you love a good latte, obsessed with “Game of Thrones”, love pinterest or talking with friends. Make this a time where you integrate the two. For me, I love a good latte. So I make it a point to get my favorite latte when I am meal planning for the week, grocery shopping or food prepping. It gives me something to look forward to while I do something that I otherwise might not enjoy.


Seem too simple? Well maybe, but the simpler we make things in an overly complicated world the more likely you will stick with the program.  


Success is not found by making a change once in a while but by making a change and sticking with it day-after-day, week-after-week and month-after-month


Want to go from to-go menu to a full fridge.

Step 1: Start with awareness - how many times you are actually eating out and how it makes you feel.   

  • Building awareness

    • How many times do you eat out weekly?

    • How do you feel physically after eating out?

    • How does eating out make you feel mentally? Think about the stress of figuring out meals on the fly, adding one more thing to think about on the daily.


Step 2: Figure out how to make a task you might not enjoy more enjoyable so that you will want to do it.


  • What things do you like to do that could make all parts of food prep fun.  

    • Use this as a time to incorporate a treat for yourself that you otherwise wouldn't. You won't do things if they are not enjoyable so you must figure out how to merge the two.  

      • Listening to a favorite podcast

      • Watching a favorite TV show.

      • Treat yourself to your favorite coffee

      • Use it as a time to catch up with friend



Was this helpful?? Let me know how I can help more at Theresa.Worley@icloud.com



Why weighing and measuring your food is like saving for a House

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I feel like tracking and specifically weighing and measuring your food is one of those things that people are either for or really against. I think if you are trying to reach a specific goal in a specified amount of time then it is necessary.

Think about it in terms of money. What if you were trying to save up to buy a house. How would you go about that? The first thing you would do is probably figure out how much money you make and then what your expenses are. If you wanted to save more for your house each month, you would have to know where you can trim your expenses back or how to make more money. The only way to figure that out is to know what you are actually spending.

 

If you were trying to save for a house in two years, you would probably keep tighter tabs on your daily spending than if you were trying to save for a house 15 years down the road.

 

This is the same concept when we are talking about food. How do you know where you need to go if you do not know where you are? Just the act of tracking is eye opening to most people and helps you move in the direction that you want to go. You may not realize that you eat Pop-tarts and M&M’s everyday until you are forced to write it down. My philosophy is that you want to lose weight on as many calories as possible at a slow rate such as a 1lb a week. This will enable you to change and ingrain new habits into your life as you lose the weight so that you can keep it off forever. I also believe that food quality is just as important to your life as quantity. You can eat more, feel better and look the way you want to when 80% of your diet is from lean meats, fruits, veggies, potatoes, rice, etc…..aka….food that spoils, not one that can last a lifetime in a package.

 

Tracking is a good place to start. It helps you to see where you can make immediate improvements or changes. For instance instead of two donuts and a latte in the morning maybe you start choosing eggs and blueberries with a coffee. The reason I think that measuring and specifically weighing food is the gold standard is what we think we are eating and what we are actually eating are often two separate things. Let’s take peanut butter….my favorite.  Have you ever eaten just one tablespoon of peanut butter? Be honest with yourself…..was it really just one tablespoon?? What you think is a tablespoon and what a tablespoon actually is are two different things….. Sad story right??? Not losing weight? Start weighing your food including cooking oils and sauces…..you may be consuming more calories than you thought.

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Almond Butter - Not measured or Weighed

35.5g or 211 Calories

 

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Almond Butter - Measured

18g or 107 Calories

 

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Almond Butter - Weighed

16g or 95 Calories

 

 

Tracking, weighing and measuring food can be overwhelming and difficult at first. Everything worth doing is…….it will get easier.  It also doesn't have to be done forever. When you are weighing and measuring your food, start to guess the amounts. This will help you learn how to eyeball food correctly in the future.

Not sure where to start. Let me help you. Contact me at Theresa.Worley@icloud.com 

 

 

 

 

Why do we HAIL the SCALE

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     We all have in mind a certain number that we want the scale to be upon waking every morning. I myself have fallen victim to this more often than not over the last 10-15 years of my life. If the scale is moving closer in the direction we want then we are happy for the day. If it is not we are often disappointed, sad, frustrated and upset for a portion if not all of the day. Sometimes we even let the number on the scale determine how much we eat for the day. (please don’t do this)

 

    Every now and then we let the scale determine our self-worth. Intellectually we know this is silly but in the moment emotionally we are sad and distraught. One of the main problems is that people have this arbitrary number in their head that they think they should weigh. They think that if they get to this weight that their life will miraculously fall into place. It won’t. Often times this number is unrealistic and rooted in comparison to others around us. When a client gives me their goal weight, I will sometimes tell them how much I weigh. (BTW: I am 5’0” ~135lb). After I tell them that, there is a brief pause because it is only then that they realize that their number might be a bit unrealistic. If your number is unrealistic, you are fighting a losing battle. One that is going to be fraught with failure and frustration. What we should be focusing on health, how we feel and the habits that we are building to get there.

 

    What if I told you that I could get you to your goal weight and in record time but you would not be able to sleep through the night, you would always be tired, you would always be cranky, you would always be hungry, you would have a limited repertoire of food that you could eat and say goodbye to enjoying a glass a wine and dinner with friends. Does that seem like a life you would want?

 

     As I began this journey with macros, this number of 125lbs was always my goal. To be honest I got pretty close. I got to 127 lbs. Do you know what happened when I got  close to a 125 lbs….. I wondered if I could be 120lbs. We all do this. Whenever we hit a goal, we are always searching for the next goal. Today I sit somewhere around 133 - 135.  

 

Guess what, I am happier and healthier than I was at 127. I can lift more weight, I feel that my performance in Crossfit is not only on point but  I feel like I am just scratching the surface of my potential. This is something that is important to me. I sleep well (when my kids are sleeping) and enjoy each day with great energy. I eat out weekly. I like the way my clothes fit and how I look in the mirror. Most importantly my eating habits are the best that they have ever been. I am eating fruit, lean meats and most amazingly vegetables multiple times a day.

 

Yes, we all have goals and I think goals are great!! I really do. I think weighing ourselves is important AT TIMES. It helps us to know if we are going in the right direction. I just think that we should look at the number on the scale as one data point not the only data point on our journey to a healthier self. We need to internalize that the scale doesn't determine the quality of our life….we do.   

Have questions? Contact me at Theresa.Worley@icloud.com

 

                                      My daughter Scout and I dying eggs this Easter

                                      My daughter Scout and I dying eggs this Easter

 

 

                                               I have no pictures of me. Selfie anyone ;)

                                               I have no pictures of me. Selfie anyone ;)