Monday, June 29, 2009

Keep a Food Diary!

It is sooo important to keep a food diary. I tell my friends who struggle with weight this, all the time. You really don't know the calories you are consuming in a day if you aren't keeping track. Its so easy to forget what you ate.

I write down my foods throughout the day, and if I am not home, I remembers as soon as I get home to write it down. I do not carry a purse so I have no means of keeping a diary with me, but if you carry a purse, it would be a good idea.

You have to be honest, you are only cheating yourself...put exactly what you ate and exactly how much. Know what a portion is, and don't' go over the portion...I don't care if you are at "all you can eat" are not ripping off the restaurant by eating more than your share, you are only cheating yourself. So you ate a few dollars more of their food, you wanted to get your money's worth...but what you really got was an extra pound of weight that you now have to lose.

I know that spark people has a great place to keep your food diary, and I log it on there somewhat, but find it easier to write down what I ate and then go to and get the calories. I hear from some friends, I don't have time for that..There is always time to keep a food diary. Don't make important is your weight loss to you? If you say that you don't have time.....then you really don't want to lose the weight!
It's all about the calories you take in and the calories you burn....3500 calories is a pound..that seems like a lot...but a few days of overeating adds on a pound and in no time, you have done that for a year! You HAVE to keep track!

You have no one to blame but yourself! Stop complaining and do something about it.

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Amazing Avocado

I love avocados!

How to Enjoy the Amazing Avocado

from South Beach Diet
The creamy flesh of an avocado gives this food — which is botanically a fruit — an indulgent quality. However, ounce for ounce, avocados are actually one of the healthiest foods around. Not only are they rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, they also contain large amounts of potassium, vitamin E, fiber, folic acid, and vitamin B6. Best of all, you can enjoy avocados on all Phases of the South Beach Diet.
Buying: There are 24 varieties of avocados. The two most commonly found in supermarkets are the Hass (pebbly black skin) and Fuerte (green skin) varieties. When selecting any variety of avocado, choose a heavy, unblemished fruit. Remember that most avocados sold in supermarkets aren't ripe — so plan ahead if you're making guacamole, since avocados take a few days to ripen. (See fast-ripening tips below.)
Storing: You can ripen hard avocados at room temperature for three to six days. However, you can accelerate this process by storing the avocados in a paper bag. Putting an apple or banana into the bag will be even quicker, because both fruits emit methane, a gas that speeds ripening. To test whether your avocados are ripe, give them a gentle squeeze; ripe fruit will yield to pressure without denting. Overripe avocados will dent.
You can store ripe fruit in the refrigerator for up to three days. If your avocado is already cut, rub the surface with lemon juice to keep it green. Mexicans know that keeping the pit in the avocado prevents discoloration. Brown discoloration won't affect the nutritional value or flavor of the avocado.
Preparing: Slice ripe avocados and eat them plain, as a salad topping, or layered on sandwiches and wraps (Phase 2). Mash overripe avocados in dips like guacamole.
To pit an avocado, slice it lengthwise from end to end and twist to separate the two halves. Using a heavy knife blade, tap the tip into the pit and twist gently to remove. To remove the flesh, you can either peel the fruit or use a paring knife to slice up small pieces inside the skin and scoop them out with a spoon. Mushy flesh should always be scooped. To prevent the scooped-out flesh from darkening after contact with air, rub with lemon juice or add lemon juice to your guacamole.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Lesson Planning

I like to let my kids chose their books they want to read for "reading", but I know there are some classics that they would not read on their own, so I pick a few each year for them to read. I can usually find a study guide for most books that are classics. Here is my first choice for this coming year. This study guide has soo much information and essay ideas, etc...I am looking forward to this book.
This year, I am going to order them from the library so that I am not stuck with so many books at the end of the year this year. If its a book we don't have, I will borrow the library's book, save some money and save on clutter at the end of the year.

My childhood friend listed this book as one of her 10 ten books, so I had to look it up, as The Giver was a great book by the same author. This book looks great and we can study the war also to make it more interesting for them. (World War II that is).

Thank you Teddi for the idea! I just ordered it at the library so I can read it this summer and them I will be prepared to drill them on thier reading assignnment.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Beat Restaurants at their own game!

Another great article from (free fitness and weight management site, never asks for money)

Beating Restaurants at Their Own Game!

Dining Out Tips
-- By Becky Hand, Licensed & Registered Dietitian

Does your favorite restaurant serve piles of tempting foods on platters rather than plates? Are the biggie-sized meals at fast food restaurants trapping you into overeating? How do you deal with a bountiful breadbasket? Eating out is fun and relaxing, but you can make it healthier. Use these tried and true suggestions the next time you lock up the kitchen and step out for a meal:
Never go out while hungry. You’ll find yourself nibbling on everything that comes your way.
Foods that are grilled, baked, steamed or broiled provide healthy, flavorful alternatives. Ask how an entrée is prepared to ensure that your selection is not swimming in butter or other fattening sauce.
For pasta selections, choose a marinara sauce instead of a white cream sauce.
Order a healthy appetizer, salad, or small-sized entrée for your meal.
Select white chicken or turkey meat rather than dark meat, and have the skin removed.
Avoid the "all you can eat" and buffet-style restaurants.
Split a meal with a friend.
Get a doggie bag before the meal and put in a portion of the food when it is first served.
Avoid foods that have been prepared in heavy cream.
Eat slowly! Put your fork down between bites. It takes the stomach about 20 minutes to realize that it is full.
Order your salad or potato with the dressing, butter, sour cream, gravy and other extras on the side.
Trim all visible fat from meat.
Select fresh fruit, sorbet or frozen yogurt for dessert.
Watch the alcohol… it is loaded with calories and can lower your defenses against food, causing you to eat more.
Beware of the breadbasket. It comes early and can be refilled several times. Ask that it be brought with the meal and limit yourself to one serving.
Water is your best beverage choice. Order diet pop, tea, and coffee with artificial sweetener. Go light on the sugar and cream.
Don’t be afraid to special order menu items. The key is to plan what to order in advance and stick to it. Decide on your priorities before going to the restaurant and avoid looking at the entire menu. Find what you had decided on and close the issue. Then, simply do the best you can with some smart choices. If you came for the burritos, then avoid the beans and rice. If you are there for the cheesecake, order a light meal or salad, with dressing on the side. With a few simple strategies, dining out does not have to totally destroy your dieting efforts.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Reward CAN have it all!

Reward CAN have it all!

If you are working out and watching your portion sizes, its okay to have that dessert you want..just agree to share it with a loved one. If you are alone, cut it up and put half away for later. Better yet, cut it in thirds.

The same goes for your meal when eating out (or even at home). Think about it, those servings they give you could feed a family! I got a vegetarian pasta dish with portabella mushrooms and sun dried tomatoes and divided it up. I got three and a half meals out of it! If you eat smaller portions, wait 20 min, it WILL hit your stomach and you will be satisfied. Eat slower, savor it, enjoy it.

I read a book once called the Martini Diet. It's not about drinking martini's. It explains that a martini glass is a serving size (a standard one, not those giant one's restaurants are now using). The size of your stomach should not be large enough to fit a full plate of food in it.

Get smaller plates at home. Those large plates make your serving look like 1/7th of a 7 course meal.

Be honest with yourself...promise yourself you are only having a serving. Wait 20 min before dessert and only eat a few bites. I like to suck on a piece of dark chocolate to satisfy my sweet craving after a meal. Once I have done that, I don't need anything else.

If you watch a thin person eat, they really DO eat anything they want, but really pay attention to how much of it they eat. I CAN'T eat more than a serving, my stomach is full fast. That's what eating 4-6 small meals is all about, shrinking your stomach back to normal size so you are full faster.

Take responsibility and gain control of how much you are really eating.

Morning Muse

I got this from sparkpeople and wanted to share, its great!!!

Remembering the good times, learning from the bad
Memory can be used for good or for evil. If you use your past as a source of learning, it's worth remembering. If, however, all you do is mull over your mistakes and punish yourself for your failures, it's a waste of time. Rehashing failure can paralyze you in mortal fear of making another mistake, which, of course, just makes the feeling worse and practically guarantees future letdowns. The key to making meaningful changes is to pay more attention to the future than to the past. Have you ever noticed that the best athletes also have the shortest and most selective memories? Instead of dwelling on a missed shot or a flawed dive, they concentrate on making corrections and getting the next one right. It's as if the failed attempt never happened. It's forgotten and they don't fear trying again. If you mess up, even in an epic, life-altering way, work hard to leave it behind and concentrate on the possibilities yet to come. Tomorrow is much brighter when it's not smeared with a fixation on yesterday.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Generic Meds vs. Brand name * BUYER BEWARE!

I have a cough so I bought generic delsym last night because delsym worked great for my cough in the past
CVS brand was 7.35 compared to 10.00 for the name brand Delsym and CVS is 4 ounces rather than 3 in the bottle of Delsym. I get home and read the bottle further
You have to take 2 tsp every 6 hours instead of the 2tsp every 12 hours with the delsym. (so there goes half the bottle)
it did not stop my cough, in reading the bottle even further, I notice, the 2tsp is 15 mg in the generic..and 30 mg in the now it went from being a 4 ounces bottle to 1 ounce! what a ripoff! and I am coughing still!
I will surely read the fine print on the whole bottle before I get generic again.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Exercise your self esteem

One of my favotire sites for motivating health and fitness tips is

This article is from spark people.

Exercise Your Way to Feeling Better About Yourself

-- By Dean Anderson, Fitness & Behavior Expert

If you’re like most people who want to lose weight, you probably think that shedding a few pounds will help you feel better about yourself. And chances are, you see exercise simply as something you need to do to accomplish that goal.

But here’s something you may not know: this "necessary evil" approach to exercise may actually be preventing you from feeling better about yourself right now—even before the number on the scale or reflection in the mirror matches up with your ideal.

A simple attitude adjustment may help you start feeling a lot more comfortable in your skin right now—and this, in turn, can make your weight loss journey a lot easier and more pleasant. Here’s what you need to know to decide if you need to adjust your exercise attitude, and if so, how to do exactly that.

Making Friends with Your Body: The Roots of High Self-EsteemThere’s no doubt that feeling comfortable in your own skin is an important part of that “feeling-good-about-yourself” goal (also known as high self-esteem) you're trying to achieve. But the more you learn about the roots of self-esteem, the clearer it becomes that what helps the most has very little to do with achieving some abstract ideal, like a certain weight or look. In fact, there are many, many cases where people work very hard on goals like this—and even achieve them—only to find that they're still unsatisfied and unhappy.

What does seem to have major, positive effects on self-esteem is the process of moving yourself—the right way—from where you are towards where you would like to be. The journey is more important than the destination. To be a little more precise, the best way to increase your self-esteem is to actively and effectively engage in something that is both good for you and consistent with your expressed goals.

Both of these are key elements. If your goal isn't good for you, because it's unrealistic or strongly based on what you think other people want or expect from you (like trying to look like a model when your body can’t naturally achieve or maintain that), then you are going to face problems feeling good about yourself. Nothing you do will ever be good enough. You’ll have the same problem if your actions aren’t consistent with your goals, like going on an unhealthy crash diet to achieve a healthy weight. To feel good about yourself, you have to treat yourself as if you are already someone worthy of respect and good treatment. If that means “faking it until you make it,” then that is where you need to start.

Exercising the “Right” Way, for the “Right” ReasonsIf you are carrying a lot of unhelpful baggage in the form of poor body acceptance, negative body image, or even body-rejection due to excess weight, then exercising the right way and for the right reasons may well be your shortest, fastest, and easiest path away from these problems. But you’ll need a particular kind of attitude and approach, one that will help you begin appreciating your body for what it can do right now, and allowing it to be your guide and teacher on your journey towards change—not an object of your contempt and ridicule. Here are the basic elements of such an attitude:
Exercise for the “right” reasons. There aren’t many bad reasons to exercise of course, so in a pinch you should take advantage of whatever gets you going. But certain attitudes and approaches will help you get a better self-esteem boost. It helps a lot, for example, to tell yourself that you are working out because it is good for your body and you want to take good care of your body. When you do that, you affirm that you and your body are friends—not enemies—and you open yourself up for healthy communication with your body, allowing it to tell you what you need. This will work much better than setting out to burn calories so you can get rid of all that ugly fat you can’t stand.
Don’t just mark time. Make exercise a challenge and notice how you respond. The simple act of setting personal performance goals and watching yourself achieve them can work wonders. Keep a journal where you record what you do during your exercise sessions, noting the improvements in your capacities over time. Hold little competitions against yourself, trying to improve on your personal bests (not world records) a few times a month, and reward yourself when you succeed.

Pay special attention to how exercise affects your mood, and let your body teach you how to use the type and intensity of the exercise you do to influence your state of mind.
Turn some exercise time into playtime. You are, among other things, an animal with a body that needs to play. Notice how happy and excited your dog or child is when he gets to go out and play—especially when you physically play together.

There is a part of you that still feels the same way. This need doesn’t go away just because you get older, become more serious, or are a little out of shape. The more exercise you can do in the form of sports, games, and other activities that are fun and rewarding themselves, the better. So be creative—turn some of those daily walks into roller skating, ice skating, golfing or Frisbee, racing with your dog, or even belly dancing!

Research shows that individuals who exercise feel better about themselves and their bodies. Once you start a workout program (or begin exercising for the "right" reasons), you'll soon experience the positive changes in self-esteem and body image that regular exercisers of all shapes and sizes enjoy. It's never too late to start feeling better about yourself!