Monday, September 21, 2015

My Achilles Heel...

Kämpfender Achilles by Teicher.jpg
(Wikimedia Commons)

I woke up this morning realizing I did something this past weekend I've done for years without really stopping to think about what I was doing. I'm sure I'm not alone when I say I spent some time over the weekend unconsciously munching on food without even realizing what I putting into my mouth. Now with my heightened awareness of trying to get healthier, I woke up this morning, stepped on the scales and was somewhat surprised to see that the numbers have gone up a little.

I guess I REALLY shouldn't have been surprised when I think back to the higher carb choices I made over the past two days but I WAS a bit surprised at how angry I was at myself. You would have thought a stranger had stepped into the room by the way I was arguing with myself...dredging up some old taunts as I berated myself for giving in to my Achilles heel...weekend eating splurges...but then I suddenly stopped in mid sentence. In the sudden silence it dawned on me that I had reached my first roadblock on my way to a leaner, healthier me.

If every other time when the numbers on the scales go up ends in my tearing my sprit down & never changing my attitude to get healthier, then how would THIS time be any different?


It's ME who has to do the changing. Change the way I think...the way I approach my weekends, the way I see food...if I'm ever going to get the tempting, taunting FOOD MONKEY off my back! So I took a few deep breaths, counted to ten, and headed out the door to my daily gym workout. I almost gave in to the feeling "what's the use" like I had in the past but determinedly headed toward the gym instead of going in the other direction because I KNOW that is where the changes in my lifestyle will come from.

I'm not saying it wasn't hard to shut the negative thoughts running through my head off, but it definitely was worth it. I'm sure there will be many, many more times during this journey of mine where I will be faced with the negative voices in my head, but for today, I've made one small step for me, one large step for healthier living!

Okay, so tell me what do YOU do to make it through the weekends? Plan your meals? Throw in an extra workout? Help me out with your words of wisdom in the comments below so I can prepare for next weekend...;~)


Low Carb Monkey Bread

    For the Dough:
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the psyllium and yeast.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the almond milk, applesauce, egg whites and extracts. Dump the psyllium/yeast mix on top and quickly whisk together.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the soy flour, baking powder and salt. Dump the dry over the wet and fold together with a rubber spatula.
  4. Shape the sticky dough into a ball and cover with plastic wrap. Place the bowl in a warm area for 1 hour (I used a warming drawer set to 90 degrees Fahrenheit).
  5. In a small bowl, add the coconut flour. Take about 2 tbs and dust it over the sticky, slightly risen dough. Gently fold the mixture until it absorbs the coconut flour, then dust another 2 tbs over the dough and fold again. Do this with the rest of the coconut flour.
  6. Shape the dough into a ball and rip off evenly-sized chunks, then roll into balls about 1.5" in size.
  7. For the Base Coating and Cinnamon Sugar Coating:
  8. In a small microwave-safe bowl, add the coconut oil and microwave until completely melted. Stir in the butter extract.
  9. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the stevia mix and cinnamon.
  10. For the Assembly:
  11. Line one 9” cake pan with a parchment paper circle and set aside.
  12. Dunk the dough balls into the coconut oil mixture, roll around in the cinnamon sugar mixture, then place into the prepared pan. Do this with all of the balls and sprinkle the leftover cinnamon-sugar mix throughout the pan.
  13. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and place in a warm area for 1 hour (I used the warming drawer again)

  14. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for ~32 minutes, or until the sugar melts into caramel-like goodness and the center of the bread is spongy yet firm when tapped.

  15. Flip the pan over onto a platter and let cool upside-down for ~20 minutes, then carefully lift the pan off. Serve warm!

To store, keep tightly covered at room temperature for MAX one day, after that, this requires refrigeration (tightly wrapped). This recipe is: gluten free, sugar free, low carb, high fiber, high protein!

One two-piece serving yields 180 cal, 8 g fat, 160 mg sodium, 15 g carb, 8 g fiber, 11 g protein.

***I have more low carb recipes listed on my Pinterest boarrd at or check out my Clawing My Way Back To A Healthier Me board on Pinterest at***

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Falling In "Like" Again...

Folded Shure SRH840.jpg
"Folded Shure SRH840" by Minseong Kim - Own work.

It's been a week and a half since I joined the gym. I joined TWO gyms in fact and have determined I like one much more than the other one so instead of rotating between the two, I'm probably going to allow the special I signed up on at the other gym run out without the benefit of the personnel seeing my smiling face. The gym I'm staying with is really more my style.

They greet me when I come in but don't get all up into my personal space. There are enough equipment all around that I'm not fighting for the treadmill I choose to do my cardio on. There is a "stretching" area I use after my cardio workout and it's tucked off to one corner of the room so I don't look like a contortionist on display as I try to stretch these older muscles into some resemblance of a lean, mean butt-kicking machine.

I had my doubts I would like going to the gym. I would have argued with you a mere week ago that it was going to be a real challenge to go and I would have to force myself to get up an hour earlier every day to put myself through torture for the sake of a healthier body. But that wasn't the case.

Discovery about oneself is an exciting thing and I've discovered one really cool thing about myself over these past two weeks. I have fallen in "like" with going to the gym. I have a playlist of songs I really enjoy listening to and I will ramp up the treadmill to 3 miles an hour (maybe not a lot for others but definitely a challenge for a chubby momma like myself) and will do pushups against the handlebars while I rock out to the music. And oh yeah, I do this all while I keep my eyes closed and sing silently to the music.

I'm sure I probably look silly, but I have come to the conclusion that I really don't care. This journey is about me and if I'm going to look like a sweaty beached whale for a little while at the gym I might as well have fun while I'm doing it!

What do YOU do to make going to the gym more fun? Share with me in the comments below...


Cloud Buns
(    )
10 halves or 5 servings                                         

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  2. Separate the eggs very carefully, there must be no yolk in the white.
  3. In one bowl, mix together the egg yolks, the 3 T. of Cottage Cheese OR Cream Cheese and the one packet of Sweetener until smooth.
  4. In the other bowl add 1/4 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar to the whites and beat the whites on high speed until they are fluffy and form nice peaks.
  5. Very carefully fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites until mixed, but try and not break down the fluffiness of the egg whites too much.
  6. Spray two cookie sheets with Pam or other fat-free cooking spray.
  7. With a large spoon, "scoop" the mixture into 10 even rounds on the sheets (about the size of the top-half of the McDonalds hamburger bun; roughly 3/4 inch thick and 4 to 5 inches across).
  8. Bake on the middle rack. Here is when you have to watch them, because the cooking time the same on any two batches. It is somewhere around 1/2 hour, but it could be less or more. You just need to watch them until them become nice and golden brown (again, the color of a McDonalds bun).
  9. Remove from the pans and cool on a rack or cutting board.
  10. While warm they are crumbly and similar to cooked meringue - but don't let this fool you! Once completely cool, seal them in a ziplock storage baggie or a tupperware over night. They will totally change their consistency, to something much more like bread - a softer texture that is nice and chewy. If you do not like softer chewy bread, then eat them as they are, nice and crisp.
  11. Since the sides that were facing the pan are perfectly flat, you use these to spread things on, or make sandwiches, or even as a burger bun! The choice is up to you, and you will be quite amazed at how much like a bun these really are!

***1 serving (1 halves) has 75 caloires, 6 g fat, 136.5 mg cholesterol, 67.8 g sodium, 75.3 mg potassium, .7 g carbs, 4.4 g protein***

***I have more low carb recipes listed on my Pinterest boarrd at or check out my Clawing My Way Back To A Healthier Me board on Pinterest at***

Monday, September 14, 2015

A Step In The Right Direction

File:Walking baby tux.gif 
I woke up this morning and realized I'm one week into my new life. The changes I've put into place will hopefully lead to a healthier me. Stepping on the scales I discovered I'm down a whopping FIVE POUNDS from this time last week!

Am I thrilled with those numbers? Of course I am. Realistically I know most of that is probably water loss and I can't expect those kind of results every week. But it's a step in the right direction.
To be perfectly honest, it's not the numbers on the scale I worry about. I've adjusted the food I eat and I've increased my physical activity level. Simple mathematics tells me the numbers will go down. What I worry more about is how to change my mindset which helped get me in this predicament in the first place.

I could be wrong, but I believe most people become overweight for three reasons:

1) Emotional eating...the main monkey on my back. I will have to retrain my brain to look at certain situations in a different manner so once I get the extra weight off, I won't end up allowing negative thoughts sending those numbers back up again

2) Medical conditions...unfortunately I have a couple of those as well. It's a struggle sometimes to select one healthy option that doesn't trigger an unwanted dietary reaction but I'm slowly figuring things out.

3) Pure laziness...sometimes I'm guilty of this. Rushing in the morning so I won't be late for work or at the end of the day being too tired to go home and cook supper, it's easier (and the lazy way out) to grab fast food. I've now stocked my pantry with easy to make meals and carry a piece of fruit to eat on my drive home.

Do you know of any other reason people gain weight? Do one or more of these reasons hold YOU back from creating a healthier version of yourself? WE all can do this! All it's going to take is to begin with one step in the right direction...


Veggie Cheese Bake (6 servings)

4 medium crookneck squash
4 medium zucchini
1 large orange bell pepper
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
4 oz Kraft fat free Mexican shredded cheese mix
10 slices fat free American cheese
Garlic powder, black pepper, and salt-free seasoning to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.Spray rectangular baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Layer slices of crookneck squash on the bottom of the pan. Layer slices of orange bell pepper on top of squash. Layer slices of zucchini on top of bell pepper. Add seasoning and chicken broth. Cover with aluminum foil and bake covered for 45 minutes or until vegetable are thoroughly cooked. Drain excess chicken broth to be used later for another recipe and sprinkle shredded cheese over top of vegetables. Layer slices of American cheese over shredded cheese and place uncovered pan back in the oven for another 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Allow vegetable to sit for 5-10 minutes in order to create a cheese sauce. Yields: 6 servings.

Each serving has 179 calories, 4 g fat, 2.5 saturated fat, 853 mg sodium, 776 mg potassium, 19 g carbs, 4.5 g fiber, 11 g sugars, 17.5 g protein.

***I have more low carb recipes listed on my Pinterest boarrd at or check out my Clawing My Way Back To A Healthier Me board on Pinterest at***

Thursday, September 10, 2015

The Blister Zone

File:Nordic walking on treadmill.jpg

So I'm happy to report three days into my new, healthier lifestyle I have managed to get out of bed when my alarm goes off and make it to the gym on time to do my new workout routine.

Did I mention I was crazy enough to join TWO gyms? At the SAME TIME!!

But before you call the men in the white coats to come cart me away to the loony bin, I had a very good reason for doing so. I don't know if you have a thing like Groupon where you live but it is a company that basically offers cool things for little money in the hopes of getting new clientele in the door of their businesses. A month ago Groupon ran a special from the gym located right next door to where I work. It was a heck of a deal...three months unlimited training for $ I bought it. Then about three weeks ago, a different gym company close to my house offered a great deal as well...unlimited training for $10 per month with no I signed up for that one too.

I go to the gym by my house on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for 30 minutes of cardio (treadmill or bike) and 30 minutes stretching (because I want to kick my Taekwondo instructor in the head one day!). Then on Tuesdays and Thursdays I go to the gym next to my place of work for 30 minutes of cardio (treadmill or bike) and 30 minutes on either abs work, back work, or legs work. If I have a meeting during the week like I sometimes do then I will pick up a Saturday or Sunday for the workout I missed.

The gym membership by my work runs out December 1st. I would have gone with them for an extended membership after my special but their prices were 4X what I am paying at the gym by my house and I like the overall atmosphere of the other gym better anyway. Come December I will just switch to going to the gym by my house five days a week.

Sounds like a good plan, right? There's only one thing I didn't anticipate that almost stopped me in my tracks the very first day.

The Blister Zone

You know what I mean...when you work out on a treadmill in those brand new shoes that haven't been broken in yet and about five minutes into your workout your little toe is on fire because you've rubbed the little sucker raw and a monstrous blister has formed to torture you! I didn't want to stop my workout so I finished the hour out before checking the damage. My goodness, the blister on my right toe looked like a alien thing had landed on the side of my foot! It was so huge that once I got my shoe off to bandage it up, I literally couldn't put my shoe back on and had to switch to sandals.

Did I let my first day injury stop me? HECK NO! I'm in this for the long haul so I worked out in sandals yesterday and today. The gym by my house has a poster advising they don't want to see people in sandals at their facility. While I respect their request, I can't get to the store to buy better shoes until the weekend so they will have to work with me and my poor damaged toe until then because this pudgy momma has a treadmill to conquer!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

It's A New Day...

It's been seven months since I've posted here. Seven months where LIFE beat down on me and kept me busy and gave me excuses to ignore the pink elephant trumpeting in the room. For fifteen years I have been passionately pursuing the chance to receive my Master Fifth Degree Black Belt rank in TaeKwonDo but for the past two years or so I have sorely neglected my training. This shows in the numbers on the scales and my inability to participate in testing for the ultimate rank at my school.

To be completely honest, I am ashamed of what I have become. Saddened I have allowed ANYTHING...EVERYTHING...get in the way of reaching my martial arts goals. So easy to blame the fourteen hour days of summer camp or commitments of my new writing career or even the requests of friends and family that can eat away at my free time. But I started this particular blog to try and keep it be completely honest with myself...and the ONLY REASON I am overweight is because I have allowed it to be so.

I'm returning to this blog after a soul-searching hiatus where I have worked hard to prepare myself for the long road ahead. There are unique as well as common medical issues I deal with but I refuse to allow them to get in the way. I have limited financial means to buy the healthiest of meal items but refuse to allow that to stop me from doing what I can. I even have a bum leg that is a constant reminder of the person I can no longer be but I REFUSE to allow it to be the reason I won't reach my goal of becoming the new and improved me!

To that end, and to keep myself accountable, I will randomly post updates to my journey as well as share various things I learn along the way which have been helpful to me. I know I'm not alone in my struggles with my weight. But it is my nature to if I am not worthy of a healthier lifestyle and THAT is the monkey on my back I will endeavor to shake off. 

Am I alone in feeling this way? I don't think so. I think there are many others like me in the world....wanting so badly to step out of the shadows and into the light of self-appreciation. Maybe some will follow my journey. Maybe some will join me in the battle. I hope so...then we can all be WARRIORS together and reach our individual goals together!

Here are four things I've put into place to help me move forward with my plan to claw my way back to a healthier me:

1. Joined a's only $10 a month and by cutting out junk food I will be able to afford to do this. I started today and will see how sore I am in the morning...;~)

2. Loaded the Hungry Girl Diet app on my iPhone...this free app gives me easy access to healthier meal choices and I can always go to their website at for even more cool recipes.

3. Loaded the My Fitness Pal app on my iPhone...this free app allows me to track things like what I eat, how much exercise I get, and the water I drink. It also gives me encouraging information like how much overall weight I will lose in a certain time frame if I stay on track.

4. Going back to training one on one with my martial arts instructor two times a week beginning next week. The combination of these changes will hopefully allow me to test for my Master rank by this time next year.

Have YOU  been wanting to make changes in YOUR life? Are YOU wanting to get back to a healthier weight? You don't have to struggle alone. Let's reach that goal together!! Let me know in the comments one change you can implement in your life right now to put you on that path to a better you...