Thursday, March 13, 2014

Days....yeah, about that....The End of the 30 Day Challenge

To say I've been a little M.I.A lately would be an understatement.

The last few days of the challenge got a little hectic, to say the least. Filming the Tonergy workout DVDs consumed my life! We were doing 2-a-days everyday in an effort to finish filming on time. We even tried a 3-a-day. It resulted with one of us Tonergy trainers throwing up midway through the third video. No bueno! 

Filming was extremely hard on my body. I felt as though I had pushed my body to it's absolute limit. I had no energy, I was exhausted, and I was just over all of it! I went to lunch with Nikki and Tamara and told them how I was feeling. This was a couple of days after my last post, where I told you guys all about athlete's on Paleo, and how sometimes modifications to the diet need to be made. I needed a modification. I needed carbs. I could feel it. I should have been getting more carbs from vegetables, but I wasn't, simply because, well, I don't really like vegetables all that much! (More on the lesson learned from this tomorrow!) Also, the rigorous filming schedule made it impossible to find time to make anything. It's hard to eat Paleo when you can't prepare any meals! 

Sooo.....I ate bread. We went to Great Harvest for lunch, and it was amazing!!! I chose to eat the California Cobb sandwich on Dakota Bread, 86 the Blue Cheese dressing. I was proud of myself! Yes, I was eating gluten, but I left the dairy off, and Dakota bread is probably the healthiest bread they have. I felt better. So, so much better!  It was just what I needed!

Look at how delicious this looks!

Those ingredients look rather healthy to me!
While I knew eating bread wasn't the worst thing in the world, and that it was exactly what I needed, I still felt guilty about it. I had made it so close to the end...after all, this was like what, day 26? 27? So close! I felt like I had given up. I felt like a failure. I know, I shouldn't have felt that way, but I did. I was determined that, even though I was going to be eating carbs for the sake of getting through filming, I was going to keep it healthy! But, as usually happens when you are feeling guilty for a misstep in your diet, you take more missteps.

Filming that night was a little rough. It had been raining on and off all day, and it carried into the night. This wouldn't have been a problem, except for the fact that we were filming in a metal warehouse, and you could hear the rain. We tried in vain to film as much as we could during the off times, but it just wasn't working. So we decided to break for dinner while we waited out the rain. They decided to get pizza. And I decided to eat it. After all, I had already broken the no grain/gluten rule, right? Way to go Amanda, way to go.

So yeah, the pizza thing happened. Oops. And let's not talk about the chocolate chip cookies... I made them for the film crew to eat. But how do you make cookies and not eat one? Or twenty? So horrible! I felt so guilty! I let you, my readers down, and I let myself down. I had made it so far, and threw it all away in the end. Truthfully, more than being CRAZY non-stop busy since filming wrapped, I put off writing this post because I didn't want to own up to my indiscretions to all of you. I just felt so guilty! 

Any of that sound familiar to you? You try to change your eating're on fire, doing great! Then you have one cheat meal. Rather than treating that meal like a rare, much deserved treat, you feel guilty for not being perfect. You can't drop that it happened. Later that day a temptation is placed before you. You already messed up once today, right? Might as well cheat again, right? Make a day of it then, yeah? Then the next day you feel so guilty about your over indulgence you just kind of...give up. 
I think that situation happens to a lot of people. It's a vicious cycle. It is why "diets" don't work. It has to become a lifestyle change. It has to become a part of you. You have to find a balance between eating healthy and not feeling cheated. 

So there you have it. The 30 days are done-zo! Now what? What do I do now that the 30 days are up? What have I learned? How do I feel? Am I going to stay Paleo? How did my body feel about me eating gluten/dairy/sugar again? How will I find that balance between eating healthy and allowing myself cheat meals...without the guilt? Have no fear, all those questions and more shall be answered in my next post! I'll tell all! Until tomorrow, have a wonderful day!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Day 24: Ain't Life Grand?

I would just like to take a quick moment to express HOW FREAKIN' AMAZING LIFE IS!!!! Never in my life have I so clearly experienced Heavenly Father's hand in my life. Crazy, incredible, and wonderful things are happening, and I am just so humbled to be a part of it all. 
Those of you who see this blog through Tonergy's Facebook page are well aware of the fact that we are planning a DVD series. Filming started today, and it was just was just so unbelievably amazing! A dream come true. We are so excited for this, and you should be too! Here is a little sneak peak for you, taken minutes before we started shooting:

Looks pretty cool, eh? We think so! AHHHHH!!!! So excited, I can't stand it!

But enough of that excitement, this blog is supposed to be about how I am doing with my Paleo challenge, so let's do this. Since I just filmed a CRAZY HARD workout, let's talk about the Paleo diet and athletes. Can athletes get enough fuel from a Paleo diet to perform their best? The answer is: Not always. 
Here is an amazing article I found concerning this matter. I love the quote at the beginning of it: 

 "Serious athletes, however, when it comes to immediately before, during, and directly after workouts, need to bend the rules of the Paleo Diet a bit since we're placing demands on the body that were not normal for our Stone Age ancestors. Hour after hour of sustained high energy output and the need for quick recovery are the serious athlete’s unique demands. This requires some latitude to use nonoptimal foods on a limited basis. The exceptions may best be described by explaining the athlete’s 5 stages of daily eating relative to exercise."
This leads me to a dilemma, however. Do I bend the rules while I am filming these videos, or do I stick to it, hardcore? I don't know what I'm going to do. Tomorrow we film two videos though, so I know I'm going to be needing some extra energy! I'll have to let you know tomorrow what my decision is.

This article also had some good advice. Here is a quote that stuck out to me:

"The few hours after hard exercise is the time to focus on carbohydrates and to possibly eat non-Paleo — starchy foods like bagels or pasta — because the high glucose is needed for the recovery process. The perfect recovery foods in this period, said Friel, are raisins, potatoes and yams."

Good thing I have some raisins I can munch on tomorrow in between takes! I will say, it has been a little harder for me since I started Paleo. I think it's the slower recovery time. I will need to adjust what I am eating and when, so I can have peak performance all the time! 

Just for fun....
Here are some athletes (according to this website) that practice a Paleo lifestyle:
  1. Carol Nichols – USA Field Hockey
  2. Kobe Bryant (not officially), but this looks pretty paleo to us.
  3. Kobe’s Teammate Steve Nash follows a similar protocol
  4. Greg Parnham – Elite Mountain Biker
  5. Josh Welburn – NFL
  6. Amanda Beard – Olympic Swimmer
  7. Kelly Slater – Professional Surfer
  8. Professional snowboarder Iris Lazz
  9. Mixed Martial Arts Fighter – Abe Wagner
  10. The Garmin Cycling Team (gluten free only for now)
  11. Novak Djovak – Tennis Pro

That is all I have for you today! Sorry it's kind of short, and no fun recipe to try, but it's been a busy day, and tomorrow is going to be even crazier! You have an amazing day!

We're ready to rock this! Are you??

Food Log:
Raw veggies (carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, grape tomatoes)
2 large bowl of butternut squash soup (2 different meals)
Apple pie Lara Bar
Large cobb salad (spinach, kale, chicken, red onion, egg, cucumber, tomato, olive oil, guacamole for dressing)

Here are some fun "before" pictures from the scene of our videos!

We had to clean up a bit beforehand. "It's a hard knock
life, for us!"
The stage is set! Ready to do this!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Day 23: What's Butternut???

So far, my favorite things about this Paleo deal are as follows:
  1. I'm cooking again. And using real food. It's easy when you get used to a life of convenience, you just eat/make whatever's fastest. I fell into it's trap. Cooking actually food became something that only happened for special occasions. That is so sad to me!!! But that is how sooo many people are these days. Who has time to cook? The answer is, no one. You have to decide that cooking is a must, and a priority. So happy to be back in the kitchen!
    Found this is a Fitness magazine today and had
    to take a picture of it. Love it!
  2. I'm trying new things, new recipes. I feel creative again! Even if I'm following someone else's recipe, I just feel...liberated. I'm trying recipes I would never, EVER try normally. And the really amazing thing is, so far I've loved all of it, save one recipe. And go figure, it was the once recipe I would be likely to try, Paleo or no. 
  3. I'm eating vegetables!!! You don't understand. It's not that I dislike's just that I don't go out of my way to eat them. While it may not seem like it, I am eating way, WAY more vegetable than I ever have before. And while we're on the subject of vegetables....
I made a delicious soup today, using butternut squash. This falls under reason #2 in every way. Not only did I use a recipe I normally wouldn't, I used a vegetable I'm pretty sure I've never had. Hmmm....Yep, nope, I have definitely never had butternut squash. That doesn't even sound good to me. I don't even know what possessed me to make this soup! But I'm glad I did. 

Look at how hearty it looks! So thick and creamy...this soup would be perfect company on a snowy winter day as you sit curled up in blankets on a couch in front of a fire while reading a book (Oh my goodness, that sounds like heaven right now!). Besides peeling the the squash (who has two thumbs and needs a new vegetable peeler? This girl!), this was a super easy recipe. Here is how I made it

Just look at those beautifully roasted veggies! 

The recipe tells you to use an immersion blender, which I don't have. As you can see, this meant getting a little creative with my little Ninja blender. Worked just fine though!

And that is it! Just blend it all together and done! If you make the soup according the the instructions, using only 3 cups of chicken broth, it'll come out SUPER thick. I would recommend using just a bit more, maybe 1/2-3/4 cup more. Also, you'll notice the recipe calls for butter when you are combining the vegetables and broth. I just omitted it and didn't use anything in it's place. It wasn't missed at all. Good luck with your soup!

Food Log:
1 Carne Asada taco, minus the tortilla
A serving of black beans (technically not paleo, but a food considered by the diet to be okay every once in awhile. I was starving and at work. I went for it.)
Lots of cashews and walnuts
Celery and Almondbutter
Blackberries and Raspberries
A boiled egg
Baked chicken
Couple of pieces of 85% dark sweet tooth was in full force!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Day 22: An Experiment

Hey, remember how I posted yesterday? And now I'm posting again today? See how I FINALLY did two days of posts back to back again? Check me out! It's amazing what you can do when you lock yourself away in your room before 11 pm. 

I am feeling super proud of myself right now. Not only am I back on track with posting on here, I full on experimented in the kitchen today! I managed to adapt a family recipe into Paleo, and the taste was pretty close.

Chicken Divan is a treasured recipe in the Runge household, and I have been craving it bad. I am going to share the recipe with you. Feel honored? You should! Hold it dear, and use it wisely. Here you go:

Easy Chicken Divan

1 Whole chicken, boiled (save broth to use for cooking rice)
1 Can cream of mushroom
2 Cans cream of chicken
1 Cup of mayonnaise
3 tea of lemon juice (or to taste)
Curry powder (to taste, oh, and yellow curry!)

Cook the chicken. When it is done set the chicken aside and save the broth. Start cooking rice, whatever kind you choose, using the broth. While the chicken is cooling, mix together the cream of mushroom, the cream of chicken, the mayo, lemon juice, and curry power. Once the chicken has cooled a bit, de-bone it. Mix the meat in with the sauce. Spread the rice out in a 13x9 pan and pour the chicken/sauce mixture over it. Sprinkle with some Parmesan       cheese and bake on 350 until heated through.  Bam! Done! Enjoy!

So that most definitely is NOT a Paleo recipe. But it couldn't be all that hard to adapt it, right? I already had chicken cooked (I had made one in the crock pot the day before, just so I would have something delicious on hand), I know how to make Paleo mayo, and I can just use Quinoa instead of rice. Thus begins my experimental journey to make Paleo Chicken Divan.

First I started by making more Paleo mayo. I used this recipe this time around. I liked the taste of this one better, and I liked how the instructions were more through. My mayo still didn't emulsify correctly though, bummer. But like she says in the instructions, just stick it in the fridge and it will thicken. And it totally works!

When I originally took on this undertaking I was going to just stick to the mayo and skip the Cream of Chicken. But then I thought, how hard could it be to make it, really? So I looked it up. Here is the recipe. Looks adaptable to me! I substituted the butter with coconut oil, and the milk with coconut milk. Instead of flour I used, and here is where possibly one of my mistakes was made, Arrowroot Flour. Another mistake was not watering down the chicken stock I had saved from the day before. Note to self: Big difference between chicken stock and broth! 

It LOOKED like Cream of Chicken, but it had a slimy, elastic texture to it. It reminded me of something the hopeless mom makes in the 80's classic Better of Dead. Here is the clip I'm talking about (skip it to 2:40):

You will never have any idea how proud I am of myself for figuring out how to get that video on here! 

Anyway, yeah, total fail. Like I said, I think Arrowroot may have been a bad choice. It has a very similar texture to cornstarch, so of course it was going to thicken like crazy. Then there was the whole not watering down the chicken stock... Hello Amanda! There is a reason it was congealed in the first place!  
But it's alright! I made a mistake, but I learned from it. No harm, no foul. And I am determined to make it again, and make it right that time!

So no Cream of Chicken. It's cool. I still had my mayo. I just added some Curry Powder, a smidgen more lemon juice, mixed in some chicken, and viola!

Topped it with some sea salt and pepper, accompanied it with some steamed asparagus, and BAM! Deliciousness happened! And yes, that is a huge serving. And no, I did not intend to eat it all at once. And yes, I did end up eating it all in one go. I was hungry! And it was just so yummy, I couldn't stop! 

So there you have it. An easy, delicious, and nutritious meal! I seriously can't believe that was healthy... I think we are programmed that if something is creamy and delicious, it must be bad for us. But nope! All that mayo is, is an egg, lemon juice, and a whole bunch of olive oil. Nothing bad for me there! So crazy. 

I hope you get a chance to make this delicious meal, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Here is a break down of how I created it:

Paleo Chicken Divan:

Make Quinoa according to direction on box
Make mayo, following this recipe
    (Ingredients: 1 egg, 2 Tab lemon juice, 1 cup light olive oil, 1/2 tea. dry mustard. Also, I 
      only made one serving, so I only used about a 1/4 of my mayo)
Add yellow curry powder, to taste, to mayo.
Mix in chopped up chicken
Top Quinoa with Chicken mixture and enjoy! 

Food Log:

You saw my awesome dinner!
Blackberries and Raspberries
LOTS of raw almonds
Celery sticks with almond butter
1 apple pie Lara Bar
Quite a few of those delicious macaroons....
Spinach and Kale salad with boiled egg, half of an avocado, chicken, red onion, tomato, and olive oil

Days 17-21: A Failed Recipe, a Delicious Success, and Some Minor Mistakes

Hello, hello!
Thanks for sticking with me guys! I know I have been a major slacker face lately. It's just that I'd rather sleep than write a post at midnight! Ha! But have no fear, I have returned and I have some stories for you.

Day 17: Major Fail

In my last post I told you to stay tuned because I would be trying out a fantastic looking new recipe. Well, I tried it, and in my opinion it wasn't all that fantastic. I hate to share a recipe that I didn't like, but here it is. I share it with you in hopes that you can find a way to make this recipe work, it looks so good! Pork loin, you really can't go wrong with it, right? Maybe if it had been roasted? I don't know, I had such high hopes for it. But it came out dry and just not all that exciting. It took me a few days to finish it off. Waste not, want not, right?
I did manage to make one delicious meal out of this failed recipe, however. I am a Carolina girl, and we like our vinegar based BBQ sauce, so I decided to make some! Here is the recipe I based it off of.  It was the most Paleo adaptable recipe I could find that sounded decent. I replaced the called for margarine with coconut oil and added red pepper flakes. Tasted good to me! This contained a small amount Worcestershire sauce, which after looking at the ingredients would probably not pass for Paleo, but I figured it was such a small amount, who cares? Good enough, right?? Here's my delicious dinner:

I just steamed the asparagus, and for the carrots I boiled them then tossed them with a little honey and balsamic vinegar. It was delicious!

Day 18: I Somehow Convince Tamara and Nikki To Go Paleo

We were at Tamara's house, having out usual Tonergy meeting, talking about how my challenge was going, when Nikki decides to start researching the details of Paleo more. Nikki found this great website, which I have found most helpful. Next thing I know, she and Tamara have decided to try it for a week!  It's supposed to start today (Monday) but we'll see if it happens. It's going to be such a stressful week for us, because we are filming a workout DVD this week (be excited people!!! Tonergy in your own home, it's all you've ever dreamed of!). I think they should wait until after. We'll see what they decided to do when I see them tomorrow. Still, exciting that they are willing to give it a go nonetheless!

Day 19: A Taste of Hawaii

For any of you who live in Cedar, you've likely heard of the restaurant A Taste of Hawaii. If you love this restaurant, I have some bad news for's closing down shop, end of this month. This makes me so sad, because it is so delicious, and I can't really have one last meal there because they basically have no Paleo friendly anything! But I wasn't about to let it close without me going one last time! 
Fortunately for me, I am friends with the owners son, so I was able to find out what they put in the Kahlua pork, my fav. It's Paleo friendly! Close enough anyway, haha! So that is what I ordered, with white rice as my side. I still feel so guilty for eating that rice, even though I know it wasn't really cheating, since it's considered to be an empty food. Rice itself is not considered Paleo, but white rice is a "gray area" food, because it has been stripped of the qualities that make it anti-paleo. It's one of those foods that won't hurt you, but does nothing for you. The guilt was worth it though, because it was delicious! Good thing I know the family, so I'll still be able to get their delicious food whenever I want :)

Day 20: Two Minor Slip-Ups and a Delicious Treat! 

You'd think, that after 20 days, I'd have this diet down. But you'd be wrong, because I can be an airhead at times. 
My first mistake came around midday. I attended a friends AdvoCare mixer. Never heard of AdvoCare? It seems like a pretty legit company, here is where you can learn more about it. So I went to this party, and I was so thirsty, I didn't think twice about slamming down a water bottle full of their Spark energy drink. Whoops! Once I realized what I had done, I asked about it's ingredients. It has a small amount of an artificial sweetener. Definitely not Paleo! My bad! But I figure in the grand scheme of things, if I am going to have a slip up, at least it's only a Spark drink. It was at least something with high nutritional value, and I really did have more energy!  
But don't worry, I messed up again later on in the day! Why I went grocery shopping when I was hungry, I don't know. We all know that is never a good idea! But I did it. I heard that Lara Bar made a Paleo friendly power bar, and I wanted some.
Before doing Paleo, I would have protein bars stashed everywhere, just in case. I had them at home, in my car, in my purse, in my gym bag. Anywhere I could stash them where I could get to them if I felt some hangry coming on. I've greatly missed the convince of them, and was excited to find a Paleo alternative. The store had two flavors that were dairy free, gluten free, and additional sweetener free. I put both in my cart, and because I was so hungry I opened a box and ripped one open immediately. 
As soon as I started chewing I realized my mistake. Peanuts. I was eating a Lara Bar made predominately with peanuts. Peanuts are legumes. Legumes are a Paleo no-no. Ughhh!!!! Fail!!!! 
Apple Pie, no peanuts! 

Looks healthy to me! You can usually tell how good a food
is for you from the ingredient list. If you can pronounce
everything you're good! 

So I've made a few mistakes. But clearly I have survived the ordeal, and have lived to tell about it. And if a Spark drink and some peanuts are the worst things I have eaten in weeks, I think I'll be okay. It's not like I went out and ate a bowl of Alfredo smothered pasta with bread sticks and cheesecake for dessert (oh my gosh, that sounds so good!). Mistakes are going to happen, I can't throw away a whole day of eating healthy over one minor slip-up. 

I did something else on day 20. I made an amazingly delicious, Paleo friendly treat! Check these beauties out!
Little balls of yumminess, that's what these are!
Paleo Macaroons, I literally cannot. stop. eating. them!!!! Just because they are Paleo, pretty sure that doesn't mean I can eat 5 in one go. But I do. Old habits die hard. And they are just so dang delicious! Here is the link to the recipe. I think I'm going to go eat another one now...Mmmm...

Day 21: Really I Just Ate Macaroons 

The macaroon binge eating continues. Nothing new to report here. I still feel good! Sticking to the diet, doing the best I can.
You would think that this far along in the 30 days my cravings for bread and fattening food would of subsided, but they haven't. It is still a temptation almost everyday, particularly when I am working at the restaurant. Some days I have no unhealthy cravings and feel strong. Other days, all I can think about is putting a buttery, delicious bread roll in my mouth. The difference is, the desire is still there, but the resolve to stick to the diet is as well, and it's stronger than my cravings.  Doing a diet like this can get hard. Really hard. You just have to decide that your will power is going to be stronger than the temptations before you. Like how deep I got there? That statement can apply to every facet in life! 

Good luck out there guys! Stick to your goals, and don't let little mess-ups or moments of weakness bring you down! A ruined moment shouldn't mean a ruined day :)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Days 14-16: Desperate Attempt to Get Caught Up

O.M.GEEEEEEE!!!!!!! I am so behind on this thing! I am so, so sorry guys! These past few days have be completely and totally out of control NUTS! SO BUSY! But I love it :)

I've missed being busy. It's crazy to think that when 2014 first started I was bored. Really, really bored. I needed something new. Something that would bring excitement and adventure to my life! I was in a rut and didn't know the best way to get out of it. I started considering moving away from my beloved Cedar City. I really didn't want to. I love it here, but I just couldn't think of another way to shake up my life to get more out of it. 
Then Nikki and Tamara made an offer I couldn't refuse. 
These lovely ladies right here, Nikki and Tam

The offer was to become a partner with them in their company, Tonergy! A company I had worked for for a year and LOVED. I love this company guys! I love the clients, my fellow trainers, and I love seeing people grow and achieve something they once thought was so out of reach. 
Stepping up as a partner has been an incredible adventure thus far. So many new things I have learned and new people I have met. Exciting things are about to happen for us, and I feel like I am on the brink of realizing all my greatest hopes, dreams, and ambitions in life! It's a wonderful feeling, to feel like I am living again; that I have purpose and direction in life. To have a job that I love and adore and am excited to go to (not so much at 6am, but that's only my alter-ego Fiona talking). It's just great to feel alive again.
So you get the point. Tonergy is great, and wonderful, and has a cherry on top. It also keeps me CRAZY busy. Hence me falling behind 3 posts. Whoops! Don't worry, you haven't missed anything!

Day 14 Recap:
The most notable thing from day 14, is this is the day I felt my body change. Now, it could totally be just one of those things where you feel especially skinny for a few days. Ever notice how that happens randomly every few months? I love those days! You feel good, and in control of your body and your choices. So it's too early to say if it's from clean eating, or just a random occurrence. In any case I feel amazing! 
Long story short, I made the chicken/sweet potato/onion dish from day 3 again, this time with chicken breast (way better with bone in). I made a shizton for a dinner at church, but it wasn't done cooking in time, so I ended up with all of it. There is a lot of it. Like, a lot, a lot. I'm going to be eating it for awhile! I'm going to have to come up with creative ways to eat it so I don't get sick of it. But thank Heavens for it, because it has saved me from falling victim to being hangry these past few days. It has seriously been such a blessing having it there and ready. It's basically all I have eaten since! And I still have left over fish taco ingredients. So I have been pretty set on food these last few days, which is great, because I have had zero time to even think about cooking. 

Day 15 Recap:
Just working on eating all that chicken! Ha ha. But, oh my goodness, I'm halfway through the challenge!!! So exciting! I can't believe I've made it this far and am still feeling good about it! I have to confess though, at this point I still can't wait to eat a yummy dinner roll. But overall my cravings are in check and satisfied. 
I had planned on re-taking measurements, weight, and pictures again on this day, but I just didn't have time. I will do it as soon as possible though, because I would love to have before, during, and after pictures! 

Day 16: I'm caught up!
Still, nothing exciting today. I haven't made any new recipes. But so far I am still feeling really good, body wise! I really feel like my body did this giant retraction in on itself type thing. Like when you use a vacuum to suck all the air out of a storage bag. But, then again, it could easily be something else. Time will tell! 
Honestly, I'm just so grateful to have this post written and caught up! You have NO IDEA the stress it has been causing me, ha! It's that lingering thought in the back of my mind 24/7, "Write a post! You're so far behind!" Soooo glad that feeling will be gone tomorrow!

That is all for me today. I will try my hardest, now that I am up to date, to keep up and provide you with yummy new recipes and Paleo concepts. I am still hoping to discuss so many aspects of this diet with you! Good thing I still have another 13 days, right? And be excited, because tomorrow I have a really yummy looking recipe to try out! It's a crock pot one, about the only way I have time to cook these days!

Have a good one!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Day 13: Hangry

Hangry :Being so hungry you are angry
                   :Anger caused due to lack of eating
                     ~It is best to leave a person who is experiencing the state of hangry alone, as 
                        they are prone to irrational behavior and angry, uncalled for outbursts

So.... it's been a busy week. And you know how it is when you get busy. You slack off on other things, like keeping your room clean (it's a disaster), or writing blog posts (Ha!), or you know, feeding yourself. I'm one of those people who will get so busy they forget to eat. Combine that with not being able to just eat whatever is laying around, and you end up with one very hangry individual come 8 o'clock at night. 

Let me back track a moment. All this talk of being hangry makes it sound like I had a horrible day, which couldn't be further from the truth. In reality, I had an amazing day! Truly one of the best! I got to participate in an AMAZING photo shoot with my Tonergy partners. Seriously guys, it was incredible! My dear friend Marie, of Marie-Laurence Demers Photography  took the pictures for us, and I cannot express to you how incredibly gifted this girl is! I am so freaking lucky to call her my friend, her work is unreal! We had such a blast taking pictures! Afterwards I got to accompany Marie on another photo shoot, an engagement session with our old roommate and her fiance. It was a gorgeous shoot, they will have so many amazing pictures to choose from! So all in all great day. But then the hangry started to set in. 

Food wise, I was having a bad day. All I had had all day was berries and carrot sticks, stuff I could just grab on the go and not prepare. I was sick of it, and therefore sick of this Paleo nonsense. I wanted food. NOW! But I didn't have anything. I mean, I had ingredients, but to make something with them would require effort, and I was to the point where I was too hangry to put forth effort. I just kept staring at everything, willing the ingredients to pull a Beauty and the Beast moment and just make themselves. But they didn't. Jerks. I finally had to suck it up and get to work. (This is one of those times where it would have just been so much easier to have been born a witch and not a muggle. Dang you Hogwarts!)

I had decided the night before that I would try out a fish taco recipe, so I had tilapia thawing in the fridge. I was excited to try them, but geez, they were going to take a lot of effort! Ugh! I was just so done with it all! I was done with using all these weird expensive flours, and making these sad excuses of a substitute for other delicious foods. I was over having to make every little thing I ate, and I hated the smell of all these weird grain like, but not grain weird things I was making. I was just so DONE!!! 

But whatever, fine. I got to work. While there were a lot of variables to bringing it all together, it was actually a rather easy meal. Here is the recipe that inspired me. I changed the tacos themselves, but I did use the tortilla recipe, the fish recipe (but talapia instead of Mahi Mahi), and the cilantro mayo recipe (using this recipe to make Paleo mayo. Yeah, I made mayo. Words I never thought I'd utter!). Here's how it turned out:

Beautiful, right??
It was funny. I went from being completely and totally hangry to the nth degree one second, to being totally happy and in pure bliss the next! The moment I took a bite my taste buds squealed with joy, and I decided the weird smelling tortillas weren't half bad, and the filling was just plain a fiesta in my mouth. They were so good! So happy with how this all turned out! As you can see, I forgo-ed the mango bbq sauce that was in the original recipe, and I added a coleslaw. I mixed the cilantro mayo with a cabbage blend, and it worked out wonderfully! 
The whole time I ate these tacos (like 4 of them) I kept going through the ingredients in my head. How were these healthy? How could these nuggets of heaven really be good for me? There was just no way! To self: "Okay, what was in the mayo again? Olive oil, lemon juice, and an egg. Okay, that's not bad. Fish, good for you, tortillas, nothing bad in there...the cabbage mix, cabbage is good for you! So nothing bad there. Guacamole, all good there. What was in the mayo again? Olive oil and an egg. How is there nothing bad in these?!?!" I just kept looking at all my ingredients that were still on the counter while I ate, over, and over, trying to find something bad for me. But no. All healthy. And all delicious! 

I hope you give these tacos a whirl, they are worth the time and effort! 

Food Log:
Freaking berries
Freaking carrot sticks
More freaking berries and carrot sticks
A few almonds
Like 5 fish tacos :)

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Days 11 & 12: Sorry for the Slacking Off, and Happy Valentine's!

I totally slacked off yesterday sorry! (well, now it was a few days ago...) However, I only slacked on writing a post, not the diet! So that's good news. And don't worry, you didn't miss anything exciting. I didn't use any new or exciting recipes. I did really super crave bread all day. Bad. Like bread sticks sort of bread. Really buttery and bad for you bread. But no! I would not succumb to my cravings. 

The most action happened when I tried to turn a patch of tortillas into blueberry muffins after I added coconut flour to the batter when I was supposed to use tapioca flour.
You'd think coconut flour, tapioca flour...what's the difference, right? Wrong! HUGE difference! Totally changes the texture. That's what I get for thinking I know what I am doing and that I am too good to double check the recipe. No one is ever too good to double check a recipe. I am proud that I attempted to make something out of my mess though! And while they didn't entirely workout, they at least tasted decent enough! Really the only problem with them is that they didn't rise. If I had had more time to research other recipes I think I could of been a bit more successful, but alas, I was in a rush. Ya live, ya learn. I'd post a picture of them, but I don't really want a picture of a deflated muffin to be the first thing people see when they see the link to this post, ha ha! 

So since yesterday was just whatever, let's talk about today (or a couple of days ago)! Valentine's Day. A day where chocolate is everywhere! There were boxes of doughnuts at work just sitting there all day, along with a bad of Doritos. But you know what? The doughnuts didn't even look that good. I really wasn't even tempted (would of been harder if they were Krispy Kreame though, let's be honest). 

It really is amazing to me my resolve for sticking to this challenge. I know I owe this blog a lot of credit in that regard. It keeps me accountable. Without it I'm sure I would have caved in to temptation at least once at this point. To anyone wanting to start the 30 day Paleo challenge, or just any other major lifestyle change, I would highly recommend finding a way to keep yourself accountable. Whether it's writing a blog about it, or posting on Twitter, or Facebook your progress, or simply just telling friends and family members about it. Anything that is going to make you feel obligated to stay strong. This blog helps me so, so much, you have no idea!

I had such a fun Valentine's Day! It was girls night out with my Tonergy girls, and we had so much fun! We shopped and went to dinner, what more could a girl want? And they were so sweet to go to a buffet style restaurant, so that it would be easier on me. Now, initially that might seem like torture. If you are like me, your first thought of buffets includes endless platters of mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, desserts galore, and just all sorts of deliciously fattening  temptations. And you'd be right, as you can see below.

But guess what else buffets have? Salad bars, and steaks grilled in front of you, so you can see exactly how it was prepared. It was wonderful, and in my opinion buffets are the best place for people who have diet restrictions. They give you total control over your meal, and you don't have to be "that person" to do so. "That person". I can't tell you how annoying it is, as a server, to get picky eaters. Needing a few modifications is understandable, but there have been times where I just don't even know how to even put in an order. People create these crazy meals that don't even exist, and the last thing I have time to do is stand at the computer for 5 minutes working on one order! I'm sorry, I digress... that is another rant for another day. Just know that buffets are great because they help prevent you from being "that guy". No one wants to be "that guy". Don't be "that guy".

I had a beautiful salad, as you can see, and after a delicious steak and steamed broccoli. Everything was delicious, and I left the restaurant feeling good about myself and my decisions, which trust me, has NEVER been the case with buffets in the past! Best part was, I wasn't even tempted by the dessert bar because I had a plate of my Paleo brownies (recipe on day 4's post) in the car! I mean, it was Valentine's after all, right? I had to be prepared with a chocolaty treat!
I had all sorts of goodness on that plate! Spinach, tomatoes, broccoli,
cauliflower,  mushrooms, red onion, bell pepper, cucumber, grilled steak,
grilled chicken, and as a dressing guacamole and lemon juice! So good!

That is all from me today! No food log. Mostly because I don't remember, and because I ate pretty much the same stuff I always do, with the exception of the buffet, which you already heard all about. I hope you all had a fantastic Valentine's Day and weekend! 
My sad blueberry muffin

Just some hotties ready for a night out on the town!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Day 10: Road Trip

I'm a third of the way through the challenge guys! Wohoo!!! 

To say today has been a long one would be an understatement! I left town this morning at
5 am for work, returned at 8:30 am only to leave again at 10 am and return again a little bit past 9 pm. It's been quite the day folks! But guess what? Even with all that traveling, I still managed to keep things Paleo. How? Because I planned ahead.

The first road trip this morning was easy to keep Paleo. I had originally planned on making a smoothie for a breakfast on the road, but as I had eaten extremely late the night before, I wasn't hungry. So I just grabbed a water and my bag of almonds in case I got peckish. 

The hour and a half rest stop back at home before hitting the road again was such a life saver! I was able to take a short nap (I barely slept the night before), and I was able to make myself some brunch. That meant one less meal I needed to pack for the road! And by eating a filling meal at this time I was able to resist any possible later temptation. 

Despite being able to eat a brunch at home, I still had to plan for the fact that I was about to be gone for hours with access to nothing to eat but gas station food and a Subway. Clearly not too many Paleo options there. So I packed it! I should of taken a picture, my bad. But here's what I took: Water, Almonds (of course!), carrot sticks, blueberries, and left over chicken fajitas from last night. Chicken fajitas might seem like a weird choice to take on a road trip, especially since they require a warm up in a microwave to taste good. But I wasn't worried. Why? Because what gas station doesn't have a microwave these days, right? I just packed everything in a mini cooler and off I went! Simple! If you plan ahead it is absolutely possible to maintain a healthy diet while traveling :)

Want to know how I made my delicious Paleo Fajitas? Here's how!

  1. I started by cooking 1 large yellow onion and 2 green bell peppers with coconut oil. Cook until they reach the level of softness you desire. I personally like mine a little more cooked. 
  2. While the onions and peppers are cooking, chop up about a pound and a half of chicken breast and cook on medium heat with coconut oil. I was a little lazy with this step and used some taco seasoning I had in the cupboard to flavor the chicken. But it is best to make your own fajita seasoning to avoid unhealthy fillers that many of these fajita or taco seasonings use. Here is a recipe for making your own (if doing Paleo, leave out the sugar). 
  3. Next I made my "tortillas". I found this recipe for Paleo Naan and thought, why not? Close enough to a tortilla, yeah? I added salt to it, and it worked out well enough!
  4. While cooking the tortillas (they take awhile) I made a guacamole with 1 avocado, half of a roma tomato, some red onion, cilantro, and the juice from half of a lime, plus a little lime zest and salt.
  5. Assemble this goodness! I threw on some salsa and extra cilantro and Bam! Paleo Chicken Fajitas! 
    Check out this yumminess!

These really were good! The naan recipe gives it a different flavor that you'd traditionally be familiar with, but that's not to say it didn't taste great! I thoroughly enjoyed them.

1 large yellow onion
2 green bell peppers
1 1/2 lbs of chicken breast
fajita or taco seasoning
guacamole or 1 avocado, some tomato, red onion, cilantro, salt, 1/2 of a lime

Ingredients for Tortillas:
1/2 c almond flour
1/2 c tapioca flour
1 c coconut milk, full fat

Makes 6-7 small tortillas

Fun little story for those of you who are familiar with Team Tonergy! Nikki and Tamara had a weak moment and needed gas station goodies, stat! They had no idea I was taking pictures of them as they paced the isles of KB Express desperately seeking out sugary treats to satisfy their cravings. 

See? Trainers are human too! We need afternoon pick-me ups in the middle of a busy day, just like you! 

Yes those are giant cookies. And Lemon Heads. I ate
pumpkin seeds
Food Log:

Pre Brunch: Handful of almonds
Brunch: 3 egg scramble with spinach, 1 strip of bacon, s&p
Snacks: Blueberries, carrot sticks, almonds
Dinner: 2 chicken fajitas
Snack: Raspberries and cashews
Desert: 1 piece of 85% dark chocolate with almond butter

Day 9: Another Shopping Trip and Pancakes


Welcome to day 9, a Tuesday. My favorite day of the week! Tuesday is my favorite day of the week because I usually have my restaurant job off, which means I get to use the day doing exactly what I want to do....Tonergy and playing indoor soccer! And I actually have time to get some things accomplished in my life, like going grocery shopping! Which I desperately need to do, because I am running low on supplies!

Before I went shopping, I of course had to look up some new recipes to get some ideas. I found this beauty; can't wait to try it out this week sometime! Stay tuned to see how that turns out! I again used this blog and this blog to get ideas for meals this week. So glad I found these blogs. They are seriously a life saver! 

So off to Wal-Mart I go again! I should add a disclaimer: I went shopping a couple of days ago as well. I only meant to buy one pack of chicken. But there was a really good sale. So now I am the proud owner of lots of chicken breast! Chicken for dinner for days! Be ready!

Cucumber, Bell Peppers, Butternut Squash, Olive Oil (yep, I buy it in bulk!),
Tilapia, Eggs, Blackberries, Raspberries, Blueberries, Tomatoes, Yellow Onion,
Mangoes, Avocados, Limes, Lemons, Apples, Mixed Frozen Fruit, Almond Milk,
Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Salsa, Shredded Mixed Cabbage, Spinach,
Spring Mix Salad w/kale & spinach 

All that totaled just over $74. Again, please no one judge me for not buying organic and top of the line everything. I realize that is the best and ideal way to experience Paleo...but I feel just fine with my efforts!

Recipe time! While I was compiling my grocery list, I came across this recipe for Paleo pancakes. Mmmmm....pancakes! I love everything about pancakes.Waffles are fine, French toast is pretty good, but pancakes...they're just fluffy goodness that warms my soul! I had to make them, even though it was like 1 in the afternoon. Who doesn't love brinner (breakfast for dinner, or in this case lunch)? 
Looks like pancakes!
I noticed while cooking them they weren't nearly as fluffy as normal pancakes. That could of been my fault though, because in the picture on the blog they seem pretty fluffy. I might of over mixed the batter, or it could just be that I live at nearly 6,000ft in elevation (such a PAIN when it comes to baking). Anyway, while they may not of been the fluffiest, they had a really good taste and definitely satisfied my craving for pancakes!
Pancakes, maple syrup and bacon. A trio made in heaven!
A few hours after my pancake lunch I realized something. I am a carb-aholic! Look at me, supposedly eating like a caveman, and I am still finding ways to eat like a modern day carb junkie! I have problems. I had some carrot sticks to feel better about myself. See, I eat vegetables sometimes. So yeah, I need to start eating more veggies! But hey, progress is progress, right?!

Food Log:
Breakfast: Orange and walnuts
Lunch: Paleo pancakes and 2 strips of bacon
Snacks: Berries, nuts, a few bites of grilled chicken, carrot sticks
Dinner: Chicken Fajitas! I will share how I made them tomorrow with you :)

Take care!