Monday, January 25, 2016

Prep Day--Pick A Day

I have been contemplating blogging about a food prep day for a while now because there are so many great blogs, Pinterest ideas, and other web posts that seem far greater than my own. However, to keep my own record of actually having a prep day, I decided to blog about it.

Many of my friends have never heard of this, don't engage in it, or try to "over-prep" making the whole idea counter-productive in my opinion. I spoke to one friend recently who asked how many 'weeks' I prep in advance. WEEKS? Seriously? No ma'am, just a few days. I am not THAT committed to prep 5-6 weeks in advance (nor do I have that kind of time at the moment).

We'll start with the basics, and since I'm not a paid blogger, I do not endorse any brand or product.

1. Grab a few lunch and snack-sized containers. They can be any size, color, or brand. I used some from my local market, which I purchased on sale. Although, you can buy much more expensive items that suit your needs.

 I have several different sizes for different foods.

2. Make a list of foods that you would like to enjoy for the next few days. This is very important because you are actually making a plan. I always say, "Failure to plan is a sure-fire way of planning to fail." Be as specific as possible.

      • Carrots            
      • Peppers
      • Cukes
      • Chicken
      • Cheese         
      • Grapes
      • Strawberries
      • Blueberries
You get the idea!  I keep a running list of food on my phone and place a checkmark beside the items that I need. You can also use various apps on your smartphone for this. Whatever works for you. After you have your list, go to the market and buy the items on your list.

3. Make the most time out of your cutting boards and other utensils by limiting work on yourself. Wash fruits and veggies first before cutting up raw chicken/meat. This will save you some time by not having to wash items 2 or 3 times.

4. If you have little hands or "spouse hands" hanging around on prep day, allow them to help. My mate tolerates prep day because he knows how beneficial having food on hand while I'm working overnights can be. Plus, it allows us to spend some time catching up on small talk while being productive. Give them tasks they enjoy. I would never ask him to cut up an onion for soup because he hates the smell, taste, and texture of onions. However, he loves using our slicer and finds it amusing to slice an English cuke from one end to the other!

5. Keep a garbage bowl or the trashcan nearby while you work. This will save you much clean-up time if you "throw as you go".

6. Pre-measure single serving size products and place them in their assigned containers. This seems so easy, yet gets the least attention when I speak to people about prep days. So many of us are overweight because we do not know the single serving size of food. It is easy to track your nutritional values if you already have food measured out in single servings.

7. After washing, chopping, cooking, and arranging all of your food into containers, it should resemble something like this:

Marinated Chicken Salad
         Lunch Main
  Lettuce, peppers, cukes, 
carrots, spinach, & chicken

Keeping pre-measured cheese
in individual containers will 
prevent it from becoming 
soggy in your salad.
*Same for pre-measured croutons*

Fridge-ready should look something like this:

I will add a small container of Greek yogurt and pre-measured salad dressing and I'm out the door in 2 minutes! I like to use the glass containers for soup because they do not stain when you nuke them in the microwave. 

Nutritional Info
via MyFitnessPal
Marinated Chicken salad, Aldi Fit & Active cheese, grapes
Calories: 425
Carbs: 37g
Fat: 17g
Protein: 36g
Fiber: 4g
Sugar: 22g

You can get more ideas for food prep day by reading The Lean Green Bean & Kath Eats Real Food

Wednesday, January 20, 2016


I will NEVER sell it. I will NEVER distribute it. But, I am taking some of it!
A friend of mine started using this product with their "24 Day Challenge" and automatically became a distributor. So, I bought the MNS C off of her. I already had a container of the Spark from about a month ago. That's about as far as I'm willing to travel down a MLM road.

I am only on Day 5 of the MNS C and so far, I guess I like it. I mean, what can you really say on Day 5 about a pack of pills? I don't feel any better or any worse, but I can tell I have a decreased appetite for breakfast and lunch. It's a little difficult to really give an accurate account of this product since I started it on a day that TOM decided to show up. I'm always craving carbs and sugar when he comes around, and I'm usually hungrier around that time.

I plan to take the MNS C for a month to see how much I lose with it.

As for this Spark. I have had the fruit punch since December.
* I love water.
* I love Crystal Lite Peach Mango Green Tea.
* I love Diet Coke.
* I love wine.
* I love fruity cocktails.
I am not in love with fruit punch!
I have tried another flavor in Spark (mango something) and hated it to the point of pouring it down the drain. I do not get a rush of energy after drinking it. I actually bought it to add flavor to water. I am not 100% positive that I will buy another container of it. We shall see.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

The Beginning of the End of a Good Thing

In December, 2013, I took on a new job opportunity at work and went from PT to FT, from nights to days, from home to away. The first thing to go was my trainer, followed closely by my lifting, running, spiking, and lifestyle change.

 December 2013

Then, the weight came back!!

March, 2014

August, 2014

November, 2014
*at this point, I was not taking many self-photos

 Summer, 2015
July, 2015 
 July, 2015
August, 2015 
*In the 160s

My 40th birthday, December 2015, approx 170+ lbs

Lifting & Spiking 2013

After the second half Mary, I began spiking, lifting, and anything I was recommended by reliable lifters/runners/weight-losers. On March 9, 2013, I attended my niece's wedding, weighing in at 145 lbs & wore a gown I had bought in 2001!

I had not been this size and so
confident about my appearance
since J and I dated!!

I had began lifting with a personal trainer at this time and we were lifting some major weight for me. Squats, lunges, bench, dips, dumb-bells, I was doing the "Basic 5"& NROL. My smallest weight recorded was 145 lbs! 

      My arms with muscle definition.

     My legs with muscle definition.

 I could finally see a hint of my abs!

You can read a detailed report and see additional photos  here

My 2nd Half "St. Jude Memphis, TN"

My second 1/2 Mary was just a few short months later, December 1, 2012, in Memphis, TN. The St. Jude Memphis half Mary, a race I had wanted to run my entire running life! This one I did solo and was accompanied by my #1 supporter--J ;-) I was in the best shape of my 30s, around 148 lbs.


My first 1/2 Mary "St. Jude Nashville, TN"

I did manage to complete a couple of major goals in my 30s, including two 1/2 marathons. The first one was with a colleague (Pam), in the St. Jude Nashville Half. The race was April 28, 2012. My time was 2:45:10, which was great to me, considering back injury and the terrain (mainly uphill)!! I weighed approx 145 lbs.

Pam and I pre-race

I earned my 1st sticker!

Friday, January 15, 2016

A Few Recaps

My bio profile is quite outdated.

So, here is a recap of some major highlights since I last blogged.

In October 2014, I made a very heart-breaking decision to put my 18 yr old (at the time) K9--Jaxon--to sleep. To be extremely brief, it was his time.  I will always remember this sweet, sweet boy. He was the source of much happiness for me and my family for all of my adult life.

I could not image not have a proper funeral service for such an important part of our family. So, my sister, my mom, my dad, my MIL, and my mate all chipped in to bid him rest.

Handmade Safehaven for rest, made by my dad.
Handmade floral wreath, made by his Aunt Tammy
Jax went to sleep peacefully in the arms of his mom and dad Monday, October 13 @ 09:40am.

In January, 2013, I became the proud K9 mom to another rescued lab, a Redfox lab we named Kanu.
He is so loving and child-like, with a warm spirit. I cannot imagine our lives without him. He is very goofy and extremely spoiled!

 His first night with us.

 He loves to swim and play in the mud--and hunt anything moving, especially squirrels!

100% Lover and Cuddler

I cannot conclude this post without mentioning their sister, River. She is now 6 yrs old and the apple of my eye. I love her to pieces. She is loyal, a HUGE swimmer, hunter, and protector. She isn't much into cuddling unless she is completely worn out or afraid. She loved her big brother, Jax and tolerates her younger brother, Kanu. 

 My BIG girl at the beach, August 2015

 River missing her brother, 1 yr later, October 2015.

River and Kanu "Opposites Attract" skijoring, Colorado January 2016.