Fruit and Veggie Tuna w/Roasted Tomato Caprese Salad

Yesterday Mike texted me saying he found a recipe in a Men’s Fitness Magazine for a tuna avocado salad. We made some for dinner and it was really great! The original recipe called for tuna, greek yogurt, avocado, celery, red peppers, and oranges I believe, but we altered it a little to better fit our tastes. We paired it with a roasted tomato caprese salad.

Fruit and Veggie Tuna With Roasted Tomato Caprese Salad

Approximately 2-3 servings

 

For the Tuna Salad:

2 Cans of Chunk Light Tuna (or canned tuna of your choice. I really enjoyed the smooth consistency of this tuna though in contrast to the chunky fruits and veggies mixed with it)

1-2 Avocados (we only used one, but you can use 2 if you’d like)

2-4 Teaspoons of Greek Yogurt (to taste)

Diced Red Peppers, Onion, and Green Apple (all to taste and depending on how chunky you like your tuna salad)

A touch of Salt, Pepper, and Garlic Powder

Simply mix together in a bowl and serve. We ate ours plain, but it would be great for a sandwich, tuna melt, or on top of greens.

For the Roasted Tomato Caprese Salad:

Set your oven to 425

Cut your tomato in slices

Top with fresh basil, fresh mozzarella, a drizzle of olive oil, and salt and pepper. You could also add chopped or minced garlic if you’d like.

We kept ours in the oven for about 10-15 mins, but you can keep it in longer if you like your tomatoes to get really roasted. If you plan on keeping it in longer, you might want to put the tomatoes in without the cheese for about 10 minutes, take it out and place the cheese on top, and then return to the oven.

And that’s it! Let me know if you try this recipe and how you like it! 🙂

Rise and Shine!

This morning, Mike and I woke up at 5:30 in the morning to go to the gym. Never thought I’d get up at such an hour to go to the gym, but it was actually really good! We made sure to be in bed by 11 last night, so I’m sure that helped. I personally prefer to go to the gym in the morning and get it done right away, that way I’m not putting it off. It also makes me energized throughout the day and puts me in a better mood. After a good morning workout, I crave a healthy and fresh breakfast which makes me more likely to eat well throughout the entire day. Plus it’s much more empty in the morning, which I enjoy.

Last night, I made a nice and easy yummy dinner which also doubled as my lunch today (gotta love leftovers!)

Here’s a pretty crappy picture from my phone:

Whole wheat pasta with marinara sauce, grilled chicken, fresh mozzarella, and spinach sauteed in a little olive oil with garlic, and onions.

This recipe is as straight forward as it gets! First you cook your pasta and grill your chicken. For the spinach, put a thin layer of olive oil in a pan, let the oil heat up a bit and then add the chopped onions and garlic. As they start to brown, add in the spinach. Once that’s done, mix it all together and top off with some sliced up fresh mozz!

Mike picked up the fresh mozzarella on his way home from Murray’s Cheese at the Grand Central Market.

I’ve been trying to be very aware of the nutrition facts and ingredients in everything that I’m eating, which will be particularly important for when I challenge myself to eat clean for the entire month of February.

The marinara sauce I used was Victoria Marinara Sauce

The general rule of thumb is to make sure that the ingredients are things that you recognize and can easily pronounce and the fewer amount of ingredients, the better. About 5 ingredients or less seems to be what most people suggest.

The pasta that I used was Barilla Whole Wheat, which I now realize isn’t 100% whole wheat. I found this article on different types of pasta and I’m definitely going to look for some of the brands suggested that at 100% whole wheat. Here’s the link:   The whole truth: How healthy if your pasta?

I’m going to try and post meal recipes along with pictures as often as possible, hopefully daily!

In other news: I travelled to Harlem this evening to take my food handler’s license test. I passed! And it’s a good thing too, because I definitely would not want to go through that whole process again. Now I’m off to go watch some Star Wars with Mike and Marc. I’d say it’s been a pretty good day 🙂

Rain Rain, Go Away

This morning I had my first shift at the new coffee shop. I was a little nervous and made some mistakes, but nothing that seemed unforgivable. I rode my bike to work, which was good other than the fact that it was raining/slushy by the time I got out and had to ride home. I need to invest in some eyeglass gear for such situations!

Right now, I’m working on making my workout schedule for the next 5 weeks, starting today. I think it’s going to be a rotation a little something like this:

Day 1: Cardio, Triceps/Back

Day 2: Cardio, Abs/Legs

Day 3: Cardio, Chest/Biceps

Day 4: Cardio, Abs/Shoulders

Day 5: Cardio, Abs

Day 6: Cardio

Day 7: Rest

My goal was originally to do 5 days of exercise every week from now throughout December, but I figured I should aim for cardio on the 6th day as well.

I’ll soon be posting recipes because fun and healthy meals are really important to me. Especially since I’m working in a new place with tons of pastry/bagel/other not so good for you temptations. My job in Manhattan is regularly filled with a multitude of candies and junk food, so that’s not much better. But with planning and by bringing prepared meals and snacks, I should be more than fine. Plus, I feel like once I start exercising regularly and eating healthy, I tend lose most of those cravings for unhealthy foods. However, I do think it’s important not to restrict yourself too much and to know when it is appropriate to allow yourself an occasional indulgence.

Now I’m off to look up/recall exercises for each body part and to make my shopping lists for this week. If anyone has any suggestions, let me know!

Home Sweet Home

Back to good old Brooklyn. Vacation in Georgia with Mike’s family was a lot of fun. Yesterday we took a trip to Cumberland Island. It was a 5 hour tour of the island and its history. Very informative. We were able to walk through one of the old Carnegie mansions, the chapel that John F. Kennedy Jr. was married in, and got very close to many wild horses among other things.

But it’s definitely good to be back home. I’ve constructed a list of goals I have for myself from now until the end of March. It goes something like this:

General Goals:

Consume 5 appropriately portioned meals (including snacks) a day rather than 3 large meals

Ride my bike to work as often as possible

Walk/take the stairs whenever possible

Keep a fridge stocked with healthy foods

Prepare/pack lunch and snacks whenever possible

Sleep at least 6 hours every night

Track weight loss and adjust caloric intake appropriately

No soda or juices

December Goals:

Exercise at least 5 days a week

Consume alcohol only 4 times in the month

January Goals:

Complete the first month of Insanity

Consume alcohol only 2 times in the month

February Goals: 

Complete month 2 of Insanity

Eat clean for the entire month

Only 2 glasses of wine within the month

March Goals:

No alcohol consumption for the month

No eating out for the month

Win the B Fit’s 2013 Healthy Campaign for Women Contest!

Be happy

Feel accomplished/proud of myself

Be comfortable in my skin

I’ve made my schedule for this week and I plan on getting a jump start on the goal of exercising 5 days a week throughout December starting tomorrow.

Tonight I have a training orientation type event at the coffee shop I’m starting to work at. Hope it goes well. Then tomorrow I’m riding my bike to work followed by my first visit to the newly opened Retro Fitness in our area! Thank goodness one opened up close to our neighborhood so I didn’t have to deal with the issues of ending my contract and paying more at a different gym. I’m very excited.

If anyone has some suggestions for other goals I should potentially add to my list let me know. Or if you have similar goals, let me know too! 🙂 Hope everyone is doing well.

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Thanksgiving

Happy Belated Thanksgiving everyone!

Hope everyone had a good holiday. I’m currently still at St. Simon’s in Georgia. We’ve been having a good time. We had a good jog/walk on the beach this morning. I’ll definitely be feeling sore tomorrow, in a good way.

I had my initial measurements/weight taken last weekend for the contest. I just took my “before” pictures, and they are truly awful. But I guess that’s what they’re for. I’ve decided that I’m going to spend my time from now throughout December to prepare for Insanity. Originally I was hoping to start it in December, but I really don’t think I’m in good enough shape to give it the attention it deserves. I feel like if I started it now, I’d barely be able to get through even the fit test. So for now, I want to workout and do cardio at least 5 times a week in preparation for Insanity.

I ended up getting the job at the coffee shop I had the trial shift at. I have a training shift Monday night. The first few weeks I’m only on the schedule for 12 hours a week, in addition to the 15 hours I work part-time at the production studio, so I’ll definitely have enough time to get some good workouts in. I’m really excited.

I need to get my Christmas shopping into action! I’ve only purchased part of Mike’s presents, and nothing for anyone else so far.

Mike and I have decided that we really want to make an effort to be more productive in the coming months. Between both of us getting out of school/work late, by the time we’re done making and eating dinner, we haven’t been good at doing much more than watching a movie and falling asleep. Luckily, Mike really wants to start working out and being healthy as well, so that should aid in us feeling healthier/more energized and getting more things done. And it will be good to have a partner for support to join me in my path towards fitness.

Well, we’re off to dinner and all in all I’m in pretty good spirits. I have so much to be thankful and need to do my best to remember that every day of the year.

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end

Today was my last day of classes at IAR. It’s a pretty crazy/surreal feeling. I also went on an interview yesterday for a barista position at a coffee shop in BK. The owner told me that out of the 14 people he interviewed, I made the best cappuccino (yay!). I have a training shift Monday morning, so hopefully things work out with that.

Mike and I are heading into NJ tonight for a friend’s birthday party. Tomorrow morning I scheduled an appointment for my starting weight and measurements for the health/fitness contest. I know I won’t like the numbers, but I have confidence that they will move down, soon enough, due to hard work and dedication. On Wednesday we’re flying down to Georgia for Thanksgiving. I seriously can’t believe how fast this year has gone by. This time last year I wasn’t even in school for audio production and engineering. I remember so clearly dropping Mike off at the airport last year. I was groggy because it was an early flight. After he kissed me goodbye and grabbed his luggage from the back seat, he told me he loved me for the first time. I felt so giddy as I drove off that I missed a turn and was briefly lost in Newark, haha.

We’ll be staying at St. Simon’s, on the beach with Mike’s family. I need to pack my sneakers, work out clothes, and find a good beach workout for us to do!  Everything right now is one last hoorah before things get serious! 2 weeks and 3 days from now is when my journey truly begins. In preparation for that, Mike and I will need to take a serious trip to Trader Joe’s. But for now, an easy going weekend with my boyfriend, friends, and family is the best thing I could ask for 🙂

Sunday, Funday

Yesterday I went out on a quest to find a new part-time job. For the past few months, while I’ve been going to school in Manhattan, I’ve been staying at my boyfriend’s place in Brooklyn during the week and commuting back to NJ Sat-Monday. Needless to say, this has been a bit of a pain in the ass. So I’ve decided to find a part-time serving job in BK so I can save up and afford to rent my own place.

I printed out 15 resumes and my boyfriend and I rode our bikes to various restaurants close to his neighborhood. Hopefully I hear back from one of the places soon! I do have a part-time job related to my field of study (audio production/engineering) but it’s only 15 hours a week and doesn’t pay very much because it’s just one step up from when I started as an intern. I really have to do some soul searching and figure out what direction I want to take myself, career-wise and plan a path towards getting there.

But back to the bike riding! I absolutely love riding my bike, and honestly in Brooklyn, it’s such a great alternative to taking the subway. I was lucky enough to bring over not only my bike from NJ, but also my mom’s old bike for my boyfriend to use. One of my goals is to get good enough to participate in a bicycle marathon. It’s such a shame that it’s almost winter. But I’ll do as much biking as possible, as long as the weather permits it! The fact that I truly enjoy riding my bike goes to show that getting exercise in doesn’t have to be a chore. I admit to having days where I absolutely dread going to the gym (but once I’m done working out, I’m always so glad I forced myself to go!) I think everyone should experiment with as many different types of workouts/fitness/exercise as possible, because when you find something that you really love to do, you’re more likely to do it! I personally know that I really don’t like treadmills. I’ll use them if I have to, but I’d rather go for a run, or even more so prefer a bike ride or the elliptical. My boyfriend was into yoga for a while. I’ve only tried it once, but it doesn’t seem like my cup of tea. I’d like to try it again though. Who knows, maybe it will grow on me. I’d really like to try a kick boxing class. I feel like the energy behind that type of workout is something I’d be interested in. I also want to get a pair of rollerblades! Rollerblading was one of my favorite things to do as a kid and I miss it. Joining an adult sports team is also a great option and something I might like to look into. And once I’m in a place where I feel more comfortable with my body, I’d like to try and take a burlesque class. It’s something I’ve always found fascinating and think could be a lot of fun. You never know until you try!

I find it pretty interesting that almost all of the jobs I’ve held in my life at this point have been in food service. These include working at a bagel shop, a Pizzeria Uno’s, a bakery, and a cafe. Part of my reason for working in this area is because I’m a social person and enjoy interacting with other people. But I also think the fact that food has always been important to me in one way or another is another huge factor. However, all of these previous work places were surrounded by food that isn’t very healthy. This would sometimes make things more difficult by having temptation so near. I guess all that really matters now is that at this point, regardless of what type of restaurant I end up working in, I know I have the strength to make healthy choices.

Well I hope everyone has a lovely Sunday! Ciao for now!

Are You Hungry?

One of the biggest steps I had to take while in recovery was truly being aware of my hunger. I think it is an issue most people deal with and may not even be aware of. Food is fuel for your body. You need it to survive. The best way to fuel your body is to divide up your meals into smaller meals that you eat more frequently during the day, rather than 3 large meals.

However, it can be difficult to schedule frequent meals, and even if you can manage to schedule meals in, you may have moments when you question your hunger. Deciding whether you’re truly hungry or not can be a difficult thing. I found this article helpful. (It’s geared towards kids, but the message still applies!)

Hunger Check

One of the biggest advantages to eating small meals throughout the day is that hopefully your body won’t get to the point of being so fuel deprived and hungry that you end up binging on unhealthy foods or consuming unhealthy portions. Keep your hunger in check!

Another good point to make is to be mindful when you eat. It takes time for your mind to register that it’s received food and that you’re full. It is especially difficult for your mind to do this or for you to become aware of that you’re full if you’re taking part in other activities while you eat, and not truly concentrating on your meal.

Just thought I’d share some of this helpful advice when it comes to mindful eating!

These images are related and help as well!

snack attacksmarter snacking

 

B Fit’s Healthy Campaign for Women in 2013

Just wanted to add, if any women in the NJ area ages 18+ are interested in participating in a health and fitness contest, check out this link to the facebook event:

B Fit’s 2013 Contest

All the information about how to enter is on the event page. Initial weigh in and measurments are taking place from Dec 1st-Dec 15th. The contest runs until March 31st and winners are determined by weight loss, inches lost, transformation seen through pictures, and improvement in health and fitness.

This is the beginning

Well hello there!

Just thought I’d write up a short little opening post. At the current moment, I am in the process of finishing school as well as looking for a new part-time job and trying to figure out what exactly I want to do with myself, career-wise. But in just 3 short weeks and 3 days, I will have my initial weigh in and measurements taken for the health and fitness contest I am participating in. Once that happens, I will start writing posts regularly.

As my about me section states, I do have a history of disordered eating. However, I believe I can channel all of the energy it took out of me to obsess over negative/unhealthy eating and exercise patterns paired with a horrible self image, and transform that into positivity and a healthy lifestyle.  My plan is to start off with the Insanity program. In the current weeks leading up to that I’ll do my best to prepare my body with stretching, cardio, and light lifting. Only so that my body isn’t in complete shock once I start Insanity. Once I start though, I plan to kick it into full gear.

In preparation for my change in diet, I’ve been looking up a lot of information about clean eating and have been trying to compile as many good recipes as I can. Throughout the weeks I’ll assign myself different challenges, whether they be exercise, food, or personal life challenges.

As a kid, I was always physically active. I have two brothers and played a lot of sports and was competitive. Luckily for me, my brothers are both very involved in fitness. My older brother just became certified as a personal trainer. My younger brother is also very into fitness and was nice enough to burn me a copy of Insanity. I can’t wait to challenge myself and join the league of my fit family!

I think the most important change I’ve made in recent years and through recovery is my self image. Granted, I have days where I look at myself and see my imperfections and use negative words to describe myself. But overall, I’m in a much better place than I used to be. I really believe that exercise and eating right will make a huge difference in how I view myself. I just feel like a more energized and better version of myself when I’m taking care of my body. But the point I was trying to make about my self image is that I no longer have unrealistic expectations for myself. I’m 5’5″ with a large frame. I used to spend nights crying and killing myself over trying to be someone I could never be. I’ll never have a tall model’s figure. I’ll never be 5 feet tall and petite. But I don’t want to be anymore. I just want to be the best I can possibly be. And I believe I can do that.

If anyone has any good suggestions/tips for my upcoming challenges, they would be much appreciated! Any comments/questions are welcome as well.