Progress, People, Progress!!!

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Weight loss is not easy.  If it was an easy task, so many people would be out of a job, because the weight loss/fitness industry is definitely booming.  Choosing Ideal Protein was an easy one for me as it was the only diet that both had a coach and was overseen by a doctor.  And it has the added bonus of removing sugar from my system, and as a diabetic, that’s a good thing.  But, people, this diet is hard!

And there are days, days I crave everything fro French fries to cheese to mentally talking myself out of just grabbing that loaf of bread and taking it home.  It’s a mental game, like I’ve never experienced.

And my first month’s stats were good, really good, and I’m proud of myself, but hadn’t really noticed a significant difference until today.  Today, people, today I visually saw the progress!

Over the weekend I went shopping, and was thrilled to buy tops 2 sizes smaller than I have in a long time.  And today, when I put one of those tops on, and was able to tuck it in because my stomach is flat enough to do so, I almost cried tears of joy!  And the jeans I’m wearing, while once were very tight skinny jeans, are now quite baggy in the waist, and so, I had to put a belt on.  A BELT!  Do you know how long it has been since I wore a belt?

I stood staring at myself in the mirror and thought, finally, I can see the progress.  It’s not about feeling thinner or lighter today.  Today, it’s about seeing a difference in my body!

Weight loss is hard.  Really hard.  But today I showed myself that after 43 days of no sugar, being able to toss this outfit on and feel confident makes the sacrifice completely worth it.  Progress, people, that’s what it’s all about!

Ciao for now,

M

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This Ain’t Yo Mamma’s Cauliflower!

Ok, so one of the staples on the Ideal Protein meal plan is cruciferous veggies, and cauliflower is one that has quickly become my favorite!  It is so versatile, I had no idea all the cool stuff it could do.  So, in case you were wondering, it can:

1. Be grated and quickly sautéed in a tablespoon of olive oil to use in place of rice for a stir fry.

2. It can be steamed and then mashed with garlic and herbs instead of mashed potatoes.

3. And most astonishingly, it can be turned into bread!  BREAD!  Yes, blink, and read that again, because I said bread!

I’ve found a few online recipes for cauliflower breadsticks and pizza dough, and both were pretty good.  But the one that is my favorite, is the tortillas!  I followed this recipe on the brilliant and wonderful Joshua Weissman’s blog, Simple Palate.

pcHis pictures and process are spot on, so I won’t replicate them here.  But, I did change on thing up, in that I used purple cauliflower.  It does exist, if you’ve never tried it.  Tastes just like regular cauliflower, but is prettier to cook with.  And when used in Josh’s recipe, it comes out looking like blue corn tortillas!

Now, you want to follow the recipe exactly the first time, and then experiment with flavors, but the original is super tasty with just salt and pepper.  There are a few tips I’ll give:

1. Make sure you wring out all the water!  Wear rubber dish washing gloves.  Use cheesecloth.  And wring that stuff until you can’t wring any more!  Bonus, you get a good arm workout.

2. Don’t be surprised by how little cauliflower is in the cheesecloth when you’re done wringing out the water.  A little goes a long way.

3. I made 3 taco sized tortillas out of it, but you could do two larger tortillas, or a bunch of smaller ones.  But the key here is that the ‘dough’ is more like a ‘batter’.  Think pancakes batter.  So, when you put them on the parchment, it’s going to look runny and lumpy.  Trust me, it’s all good.

4.  Toasting them in a dry pan right before serving is what makes them taste and feel like a tortilla. So, don’t skip this step.

Below is a photo of my faux blue corn tortillas made from purple cauliflower, stuffed with ground turkey seasoned with chili powder, cumin, and a touchcts of cayenne, and some micro greens, all topped with a few drops of hot
sauce!

And the bread craving I’ve been having over the past month is gone, yo!

Try them!  You won’t be disappointed.

Ciao for now,

M

 

And the Cravings Came in Like a Lion!

Today is day 12 and I can proudly say, I have not cheated once on this blasted diet!  And it was not without struggle and moments of weakness.  Luckily, and fortunately I was strong enough not to give in to temptation, even though temptation was absolutely everywhere this past weekend.

Temptation #1: Doughnuts in the office last Friday for a morale treat from the boss.  Now, it’s important to note, I don’t even friggin like doughnuts.  At all.  On a normal day, I would never eat one, but oh sweet baby Jesus, I wanted one on Friday.  But I didn’t.  Just made myself some Market Spice Tea (for those of you not in Seattle, it’s an orangey-spicy-warming-comforting tea blend from the tea shop in Pike’s Street Market), and took my no carb having self back to my desk.

Temptation #2: In stopping by the store on Friday after work, they were doing a cheese sample of fresh parmiggiano reggiano from Italy!  The godfather of cheeses, perfectly aged, was staring me in the face, just begging me to take a piece of it’s salty goodness.  But I didn’t!  And I was NOT happy about it!  Hell hath no fury like an Italian woman who can’t have parmiggiano reggiano!  I just bought my chicken breast and my purple kale and headed home.

bcw

Temptation #3: I went to see a play and they were serving wine, glorious red wine in all it’s glory, and during the entire show, Bacchus called to me to just indulge in a few sips!  But I didn’t!  I downed my water bottle and enjoyed the show.

Temptation #4:  Blind date for brunch.  Yeah, I didn’t think this through.  This was a terrrrrrible idea to do during the first month.  But, a buddy of mine was just sure I had to meet this co-worker of his, so off I went.  The dude ordered my perfect breakfast!  Bacon, eggs, and hashbrowns!  Oh, and an English muffin with house made raspberry jam. Did I have bacon?  No.  Did I have hashbrowns, or buttery nooks and crannies with jam?  No. I had a garden frittata that they screwed up and covered half with a yogurt coulis that I specifically asked them not to put on there.  So essentially I got two bits of egg and mushroom and four cups of tea for breakfast.  Took all my willpower not to drive through a McDonald’s on the way home, but I refrained.  Went home, had some roasted cauliflower and a chocolate coconut bar and took pride in my strength.

Temptations #5:  Grocery shopping last night for the week, and for the love of everything holy in the world I wanted bread.  I am craving every kind of bread, and somehow ended up on the chip aisle.  It was the Metropolitan Market, so the chip aisle is all healthy options, but none I can indulge in.  I saw a bag of pretzels.  Gluten free, vegan, covered in seeds, and I actually picked the bag up.  And talked myself down off the salty goodness ledge.  I set the bag down, walked to the cash register, paid and left before anything else called my name.

But oh, the break and wine and cheese…the holy trinity of my Italian heritage is calling to me like a Siren to a sailor, and it took every ouce of self control I had to not follow her song.  Somewhere behind the haze of temptation, I knew the consequences weren’t worth it.  Destroying the hard work I’d done over the past week wasn’t worth it. I have the word Forza tattooed on my arm, because, above all things, I am strong!  And if I can survive the past few days, and all of those temptations for the foods I truly, truly love, then I can do this!  I can see this through to the end!

These cravings might have come in like a lion, but I’m gonna beat them into lamby submission!  Forza!

Ciao for now,

M