Meal Plan Week 3

Happy Thursday 🙂

And so, it is week 3- Day 18 of the 21DF. I made some pretty awesome meals this week. Like last week, they’re a little higher in calories for my calorie range, but I am hitting all my containers. I’ve had a few cheats this week… one very big cheat on Halloween (guess that was technically last week) and I’m sure you can guess what that was. Oh well… only once a year after all.

Week 3

Week 3

Breakfast

Sunday morning we made a huge batch of pumpkin protein pancakes. I didn’t really use a recipe for this, I just threw ingredients together. I combined 2 cups of whole wheat flour, 2 eggs, 1 cup pumpkin puree, and 1 scoop Quest Vanilla Milkshake protein powder, 1 tsp of baking soda, and some cinnamon, then thinned the batter with a little almond milk and water to get the right consistency. The batch made 24 pancakes. At first, I was thinking this was 4 servings- that would have given me 1/2 cup flour (1 yellow), 1/4 cup pumpkin (1/4 green), and 1/2 protein between the eggs and protein powder (1/2 red). But, I realized that the flour is counted as 2 yellows really, so I halved the servings to make 8. This gives me 1 yellow, 1/8 green (don’t even count it really), and 1/4 red. I supplemented my protein with 4 oz of plain Greek yogurt (mixed with Truvia to sweeten it) and top with 1/2 banana to give me a fruit (1 purple.) So, 3 pancakes, 1/2 cup yogurt, and 1/2 a banana became my breakfast. When I went o the Renaissance Festival last weekend, I had bought some almond honey. Sometimes I would drizzle some over, but I find with the Truvia in the yogurt I really don’t need it.

Breakfast!

Breakfast! 1 red, 1 purple, 1 yellow (plus coffee and creamer, and sometimes honey)

Lunch

For lunch, I found an interesting recipe by Fit Mom Angela D called Bacon Cheeseburger Skillet. My husband was interested in the name, so I showed him the recipe. He decided he wanted in on the deal… So I bought a bunch of extra ingredients to make a huge yield for the both of us to take for lunch. This recipe involves lean ground beef, turkey bacon, diced tomatoes, onion, mustard and some spices. I ate it with half a pita pocket (he had a whole) and a serving of shredded cheddar. It was DELICIOUS! My husband praises it every day as being very good, and very filling. For me, this meal turns out to be 1.25 red, 1/2 green, 1 yellow and 1 blue.

Bacon Cheeseburger Skillet!

Bacon Cheeseburger Skillet!

Dinner

For dinner, I turned to another Fit Mom Angela D recipe: 21 Day Fix Chicken Marsala. I’m not a huge fan of chicken marsala, but man… this was GOOD. I added grape tomatoes in mine, and it really made the flavor pop.

cooking Chicken Marsala!

Cooking Chicken Marsala!

We used roughly 3 lbs of thin cut chicken breast (tossed in whole wheat flour), a whole lot of mushrooms, some shallots, some garlic, some chicken broth, a little olive oil (it calls for coconut oil, but I didn’t want it to taste like coconut) and grape tomatoes. I made some asparagus on the side to go with it. (Great pairing!) We ran out of mushrooms/tomatoes and asparagus yesterday, but I have some green beans in the freezer to go with the last two pieces of chicken for tonight. (Always useful to have bulk frozen veggies in the freezer.)

 

1 red, 1 green, 1 tsp

1 red, 1 green, 1 tsp

Snacks

I’ve kept with my oldies but goodies- apples/cinnamon/peanut butter (1 purple, 1 tsp), carrots/pumpkin seeds (1 green, 1 orange), and a Quest bar (1 red). I’ve been a little short on the greens this week, while being a little over on the reds. I also had a big candy binge on Halloween, but have been controlling myself since. I tried to have only 1-2 pieces a day since then, because we still have extra.. but I was noticing that it was increasing my lenience towards other sugary foods, which is not a road I want to stumble down, especially with the holidays. So I’m doing all I can to keep away from sugar. I only had 1 piece of honey hard candy yesterday, so I feel pretty good about that. Feeling even stronger today, so keeping up with the good fight!

My awesome pug pumpkin I carved for Halloween!

My awesome pug pumpkin I carved for Halloween!

So, as I’m on day 18 today, I’ve sort of made plans on how I’m going to continue forward. Well, I’ve adopted in my old workout program, Supreme 90 Day (I got it in 2011), and I’ve been following along with it pretty good. I’ll post more about this soon, but in a nutshell, this is a 90 day program on 10 DVDs. There is a schedule you follow and you do the corresponding DVD you need for each day. I’ve been using this plan to keep my workouts in check and use it as a guide for strength training at the gym. I copied down the exercises in the DVDs and have been doing them in the gym so that I can use heavier weights to build strength. There are also a few Tabata/HIIT style workouts included that I do at home (and my husband has even joined me for!) I’m on Day 18 of that program as well, and plan on following for the full 90 days. SO.. as far as 21DF goes, I’m going to keep going on the plan as I follow S90D. Next week (week 4) I’m going to be on vacation, but I’m going to plan some workouts I can do and try to get them in every day. I’ll bring my containers with me, but don’t expect to use them for every meal, as we’ll be visiting friends and family and it may not be practical. So next week is a semi break and my real week 4 will pick up when I get back. I will check my measurements and take progress pics after “week 4” and continue on to the next month of the program. Least that’s the plan!

Meal Plan Week 2

I know I’m well into week 2, but I’m trying to catch up a bit. Week 2 was made up on the fly, as I was super busy last week and didn’t have a lot of time before hand to organize it. But I did manage to come up with some pretty good meals, so I’d say it was a success. Unfortunately, my meals were a little over calorie-wise for my range, and I’m a little over with my vegetable and fruit containers, but I’m not going crazy and deviating from my plan.

Last Friday, I went to an annual bonfire my friend throws. It’s always a good time with lots of food and drink. I did drink one Redd’s apple cider, but I went a little overboard with the food (Can we say nut mix with candy in it…:-/) Oh well. I did pull it together Saturday, but Sunday we went with some friends to the renaissance festival (a big fall thing here in MD) where I drank two beers and had a giant apple dumpling.. and bought/ate some honey & honey candy. Again, whoops. I’ve been really good at bouncing back though. I usually have trouble with sneaking sugar after I break the no sugar seal. While I’ve had cravings and temptation.. I’ve been really good with distracting myself. I DID put some of my fresh honey on my yogurt for breakfast this week… but only a drizzle, maybe a teaspoon total.

Sword fighting at the Renaissance Festival.. yes I DID dress up!

Sword fighting at the Renaissance Festival.. yes I DID dress up!

Anyways, I managed to make up my schedule this morning (even though we’re on Thursday already.) I made some adjustments to it to reflect some changes that happened, but I’ve pretty much fallen in line as I planned everything.

Round 4 Week 2 mealplan

Round 4 Week 2 meal plan

Breakfast

For breakfast, I had some plain Greek yogurt (red), half a banana (purple), and a Kashi Go Lean cereal (yellow) I had to play around with this a little over the past few days to get the taste I was looking for. Greek yogurt is really good for you… unfortunately the flavored kind has way more sugar, which I’m trying to avoid. So I got some plain, but the plain doesn’t taste as good. I tried to sweeten it by drizzling a little honey on top, but that only sweetened the top. Then I tried to mix in the honey, but I would have had to add a ton of it to get the sweetness, which defeats the purpose. Then I tried mixing in some Truvia. One packet wasn’t really enough.. but two packets.. and a small drizzle of honey.. perfect! The Truvia is a natural sweeter too.. not artificial, and doesn’t have the calories. Even though it’s not really part of clean eating, or the 21 day fix plan… it works for me.

Breakfast Week 2 (1 red, 1 purple, 1 yellow)

Breakfast Week 2 (1 red, 1 purple, 1 yellow)

Lunch

For lunch, I made a version of Southwestern Spaghetti Squash posted by Skinny MS. Hers called for some cheese on top, but I omitted that because I had a fat serving planned in my dinner. So basically, all this was was spaghetti squash, salsa, ground turkey, black beans, and green onions. Somehow… with minimal seasoning… it’s really pretty good! Unfortunately, I learned that salsa is considered a fruit on 21 Day Fix, so this put me over my fruit count by an extra half container. But I’m not super worried about it.

SOuthwestern Spaghetti Squash (1 red, 1 green, 1/2 purple, 1 yellow)

Southwestern Spaghetti Squash (1 red, 1 green, 1/2 purple, 1 yellow)

Yesterday, my coworkers and I went to Wegman’s for lunch to celebrate our October Birthdays. I ended up eating my lunch for dinner, and making myself a nice salad for lunch. I decided to bring my containers, and while I felt a little nervous about using them in a grocery store, it turned out not to be a big deal. My salad ended up having spinach, tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, mushrooms, roasted peppers, roast chicken, an egg, and some shredded organic cheddar and Romano cheese. I brought some pumpkin seeds from home, as well as some salad dressing.. but I forgot the dressing in the fridge at work, so I just bought a packet of balsamic and used it sparingly. It was yummy, and smaller than one I would have made sans containers… so I think I’ll bring them next time I go as well (much to my husband’s disbelief and taunting. >:/)

Wegman's salad lunch! (3 green, 1 blue, 1 orange, 1 red)

Wegman’s salad lunch! (3 green, 1 blue, 1 orange, 1 red)

Dinner

For dinner over the weekend and earlier this week, I made some Thai Coconut Curry Butternut Squash soup from Host the Toast. Unfortunately, I  forgot to take pictures, but it looks like butternut squash soup (lol) The taste…. amazing. It was probably the best butternut squash soup I’ve ever made. And it was pretty easy to make, so I definitely recommend. As far as containers go, the soup was 1 green, and 1 blue (coconut milk). Because there was no protein in the soup, I bought a rotisserie chicken from BJs, carved off the chicken, and tossed it on top of salad (salad mix, tomatoes, onion, mushrooms, olives, salad dressing). The salad container count was 1 red, two green, 1 orange. Getting a lot of greens this week.

The soup/salad ran out on Tuesday (because we ate it Saturday and Sunday night too) so I had to improvise for the rest of the week. Yesterday, I had the Wegman’s salad for lunch, so I simply ate my planned lunch for dinner. Tonight I think I’ll make a nice big omelet with some left over veggies and some pepper jack cheese.

Snacks

My snacks this week were pretty much the same as last week. I did my apple, cinnamon, peanut butter thing, and had some carrots and celery for snack #2. Since the orange container was taken up in my meals, I couldn’t accompany my carrots/celery with pumpkin seeds.. so I tried to whip up some buffalo sauce using Franks Red Hot and a little Greek yogurt. iIt proved too hot though, so I didn’t end up eating much of it. I’ll have to work on that. My 3rd snack, of course, were my Quest bars. Love them!

I’ve already started planning for next week. The weekends aren’t always clear to me as far as meals, since we haven’t discussed weekend plans yet, so that’s why I leave them blank. I do make sure to track my containers on the app though, so I know where I’m at and what I can have 🙂 I have lost a few pounds over the past couple weeks, which is encouraging, but I’m still above my starting point I was originally at a few months ago. Heading in the right direction though, and I hope it keeps going!

What I’m Eating Wednesday: Weeks 1 and 2 of My Modified Eating Plan

In my previous post, I announced that I was going to try out a modified version of the 21 Day Fix nutrition plan. I didn’t post last week, but I wanted to share a little bit of what my meals have been like, how the meal planning is going, and How I feel about it so far.

So.. as posted previously.. this was my meal plan for week 1.

Week 1

Week 1 Meal Plan

I filled in my projected plan for the weekend, but I knew it might not pan out because my mother-in-law was coming for a visit and I wasn’t sure how that would go food wise. In the end, it didn’t pan out too well, but more on that a little later.

For breakfast I had both a spinach/egg omelet (using one whole egg and two egg whites- not the two eggs the plan says to use for a serving of protein.) as well as some oatmeal that I spiced up with some cinnamon and a teaspoon of nut butter. I did put half and half in my coffee.. which isn’t allowed in the original 21 day fix plan… but I’m not drinking black coffee.. so screw that. One of my sources I used to look up the 21 day Fix food guidelines cited that a portion of carbohydrates was 2/3 cup. Later I read another site saying it was 1/2 cup. For my oatmeal, I kept the 2/3 cup portion- using 1/3 cup for the oats, and 1/3 cup for the almond milk. Overall breakfast was pretty tasty.

Spinach/egg omelet and cinnamon/PB oatmeal

Spinach/egg omelet and cinnamon/PB oatmeal

For my lunch for the week, I made a chicken salad using shredded chicken, plain Greek yogurt, cucumbers from our garden, diced apples, and pumpkin seeds. I threw this on top of some salad greens and cut up some fresh tomatoes from our garden. It was pretty good.. but a little bland. I used half my protein portion for the chicken and half for the yogurt. This also included my seed portion and a fruit portion. I got the meal idea from Sublime Reflection.

Week 1 lunch- chicken salad

Week 1 lunch- chicken salad

 

My snacks at work were a serving of fruit (cantaloupe or strawberries) and some cut up cucumber slices from our garden.

For dinner, I made a Quinoa taco bake recipe I got from Pinterest, and unfortunately, the link is no longer working (:() But OMG it was sooooo good. I have the recipe on MyFitnessPal HERE, and basically, you cook the ground turkey with the spices, add the zucchini (I shredded it before hand) and tomatoes/tomato sauce, followed by 1 serving of cheese and the quinoa servings. Place it in a glass casserole dish and top with remaining cheese. Then  bake at 350 for about 15 minutes (til the cheese is melted.) Soooo good. And 1 serving was 1/4 of the whole tray! This gave me a serving of protein, a serving of carbohydrates, 1 vegetable serving, and 1 fat serving.

Quinoa Taco bake... I made two so we could eat it during the week

Quinoa Taco bake… I made two so we could eat it during the week

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YUM!

We ran out of the casserole by Wednesday. On Thursday I used some left-over shredded chicken and mixed it in with a serving of guacamole and served it on a black bean burger with salsa. Usually I use eggs as my protein for this quick meal, but since I had eggs that morning for breakfast, I didn’t want to repeat.

On Friday, we spent the day shopping for the week and cleaning our house for our visitor. She was getting in late, so I made a crock-pot meal of apple chicken and sweet potatoes (got the recipe from Megan Blinka) Didn’t get a picture of it, but it looked pretty much like the picture she has in her recipe post. The chicken was a little bland… but the apples in it were divine. I might just have to cook more apples by slow-cooker!

My mother-in-law had a little chicken and sweet potatoes, but wasn’t totally hungry for a meal (which was fine.. we were not sure what she was planning to do for food). My husband started getting hungry again, so we broke out some cheese and crackers and bagel chips we had bought for her to munch on. I had some… ok I had a lot. along with two glasses of wine. So.. not such a good start to the weekend taking in alcohol, extra fat servings, and processed carbs :-/

On Saturday, we spent a lazy morning having breakfast (I had the same thing I’m having this week, so more on that later), drinking coffee, and later breaking out the cheese/crackers again, along with some pita chips and hummus. I partook on the munchies for a while, before switching to one of my left over chicken salads to get some real food in me. After lunch, we decided to go up to the waterfront town of Havre De Grace to walk the Promenade (a deck walkway on/along the Susquehanna river edge) and then to a driving range to hit some balls. When we got to HdG, we noticed there were a LOT of people around! Much more than usual. At the end of the Promenade, there was some sort of festival going on, and we soon found out it was the HdG Annual Seafood Festival. Figures that we don’t go up there that often, and there would be a huge event going on the day we did. We did not sample any of the food, but we did wander around the art vendors also set up there. Then we decided to walk a few blocks down the road to the local homemade candy and ice cream shops. Bomboy’s is a pretty popular stop in HdG, so.. when in Rome. We picked up a few treats at the candy shop, then headed across the street to the homemade ice cream parlor. I figured.. what the heck, I’ll get a little. I ordered their smallest “single” size in a cup.. and man.. it was not small at all! It was big.. and very yummy, and I ate it all. Mind you this was premium ice cream with peanut butter candy chunks in it. Ooops. On top of this, I also shared some truffles we bought at the candy store with my husband. Yeah, Saturday was full of bad decisions.

I felt pretty bad about the ice cream and candy. We Also went out to dinner later and I ordered a salad with quinoa, crab and blueberries- the lightest thing I could find. I also hadn’t had enough vegetables that day. But, I was decided not to dwell on the “cheats” and was determined to eat better on Sunday. (And I did!) I was scheduled to eat my egg/spinach/oatmeal Sunday morning, but I had made a yogurt parfait instead. It consisted on 6 oz vanilla Greek yogurt, 1 cup sliced strawberries, 12 chopped almonds, and 1/2 cup Kashi Go Lean cereal. This equates to 1 protein, 1 fruit, 1 fat and 1 carb serving.. and it’s good!

My breakfast yogurt parfait

My breakfast yogurt parfait

Since I had the strawberries in the yogurt, and I was scheduled to have leftover apple chicken sweet potatoes for dinner, I didn’t eat my scheduled chicken salad which had a serving of fruit in it. I made a new chicken and egg salad (using 1 serving left-over shredded chicken, 1 hard boiled egg and plain Greek yogurt, and a little mustard), served it over salad greens with pumpkin seeds, tomatoes and cucumber. It was pretty good, and I got a double dose of protein (which I needed to reach my goal for the day)

I added a little balsamic vinegar to spruce it up a bit

I added a little balsamic vinegar to spruce it up a bit

Sunday, I managed to stick to my goals. Note that during the week, I also eat Quest bars for after-workout fuel. I also might sneak a little ice cream or chocolate here and there. The extra sugar is not in the plan, but it’s there. I’m getting better at not indulging, but my sweet tooth and habits are hard to overcome. Always striving for progress!

This week is Week 2, and I made a new meal plan.

Week 2 Meal Plan

Week 2 Meal Plan

For breakfast, I’ve been eating my parfait, and it’s been wonderful.

For lunch I cooked up some ground turkey and added some Francesco Rinaldi No-Salt-Added Pasta sauce to make a meat sauce. I then served 4 oz of that (3 oz for the turkey, 1 to account for the pasta sauce) over some spaghetti squash, green beans and spinach. I sprinkled a little parm cheese on top, but didn’t really count that as it wasn’t a lot.

Week 2 lunch!

Week 2 lunch!

For snacks, I’ve been pairing some fruit with some pumpkin seeds in the morning, and some cucumber and balsamic dressing in the afternoon. Today, I added a small home-grown tomato.. can’t wait to eat it later!

my snack waiting for me this afternoon!

my snack waiting for me this afternoon!

For dinner, I made a simple stir fry. Monday I ate the last of the Apple chicken and sweet potatoes, but for the rest of the week I have stir fry. It’s basically chicken breast, zucchini, mushrooms, bell peppers, spinach, and green beans, and brown rice, stir fried in coconut oil, with a dash of garlic and onion powders, red pepper flakes, soy sauce and agave nectar. SOOOO much yummier than I thought it would be. I was inspired by the recipe found on Kendra Fletcher Fitness.

chicken stir fry!

chicken stir fry!

So that’s pretty much this week up to Saturday. This weekend we are going out of town, but I’m going to at least have my yogurt parfait for breakfast, and plan on taking some healthy veggies to munch on.. so we’ll see.

As far as this food plan goes.. I’m rather enjoying it. Despite some indiscretions and cheats here and there, I like that I’m able to plan my meals efficiently and am eating fairly clean. As for results, well I can’t really say yet. At times I feel like I’m losing, and other times I feel like nothing’s happening. I haven’t weighed myself because the program discourages that until the last day.. so I’m going with that. I also haven’t measured myself for that reason. But I feel good (for the most part!) about my food choices, and the portions are really bigger than you would think. That stir fry is a huge plate! And I had to use big containers for my chicken salads to fit it all in there. Calorie wise I’m right around where I need to eat. I’ll probably bump up to the next calorie bracket in the program for week 4 before starting my next round.. as they tell you to use that last week to eat your maintenance calories. I have been going a little over my target, but I get back under after workouts, and generally I break even. Looking forward to planning my next week!

What I’m Eating… Friday

No, I haven’t abandoned WIEW… or my blog for that matter :-p It’s just, I eat a lot of the same things and I didn’t feel like posting every week. BUT I’m venturing into a new method of meal planning that I’m hoping will help me better organize and plan proper portions and proportions of my marcos.

I’m sure a lot of people reading this have heard of the 21 Day Fix program from BeachBody. OK.. first.. if anyone of you reading this is like me.. you’ll be rolling your eyes right about now. I’m not a big fan of the BeachBody company. Not because I don’t think their programs work or are bad… quite the opposite. I’m a hug fan of the concept of workout programs where you have a schedule and play a different workout each day. I think it’s really great that you can get really good workouts at home with minimal equipment. That being said… I feel like the company over hypes their products and make people think that they’ll go from flabby to incredibly toned in 30-90 days. YES there ARE some people out there with incredibly responsive bodies that may see a huge improvement over the course of the program.. but as the fine print always says *results not typical*. So many people are out there for a quick fix and a lot are disappointed with their slow or lack of progress and give up or discontinue after finishing. There programs are highly effective.. but fitness and changing your body takes time… lots and lots of time. There’s ups and downs, and ultimately, it’s the choices you make every day for the rest of your life that will determine your success in reaching your goals. I love exercise, and that’s something I will continue for as long as I physically can. I do not expect magical results to come out of a 30-90 day program. Doesn’t work that way for me.

Another thing I dislike about BeachBody is how they push their products ALL the freakin’ time! Just do one of their workouts and at the end the instructor is gushing about how much they love Shakeology.. followed by company commercials pushing Shakeology and other BeachBody programs and products. Shakeology is way over priced in my opinion… there are plenty of other protein powders and supplements out on the market that don’t nearly cost as much. (I know, I’ve done my research on this.) BeachBody’s angle on Shakeology is that it’s “the healthiest meal of the day!” Yes, the product is fortified with vitamins and minerals.. but you can also get them from other sources in food and/or supplements.. and it won’t cost you $4/glass. If Shakeology works for you.. that’s great! But if you are shopping around for a protein powder or supplement.. do your research and look outside the BeachBody box. Do what works best for you… not what a company says is best for you. (And again.. it’s not a magic pill or quick fix… a shake alone contains nothing magical to make you lose weight! It’s just a supplement!)

The last thing I dislike about BeachBody are the coaches. (Not personally, of course! lol Just the concept.) BeachBody pretty much lets anyone become a coach. There’s no certification or training needed… you want to be a coach.. BAM welcome to the club. Course.. “coach” in this case is just another word for salesman. I hate salesmen. If you try to sell something to me unsolicited, I am immediately suspicious of you. My Facebook feed is constantly bombarded by BB coaches who have this wonderful new amazing opportunity that they want to share with you! Then someone will comment “ooohhh.. what is it!?” and the response is “I’ll PM you!” How about you just tell people what’s going down and maybe they’ll be interested enough to buy into it. I may like and want what you are offering… but I don’t want to fall into a sales trap and suddenly I’m on your radar where you will try to sell me things. No thanks. All that being said… I’m sure there are some wonderful genuine coaches out there.. people who have experience and success with the programs and have researched nutrition/science behind it and truly want to help people get excited and take control of their lives through fitness and nutrition. I GET that… I’m a runner.. I’m ALWAYS talking about running and encouraging people to do it! But I’m not trying to sell anything.. I don’t make a commission off what I gush about. That’s the difference.

Before I end this rant (because this post really wasn’t intended to be a giant hate-on-BeachBody rant!) I want to give a little disclaimer. I do not hate people who use BB. I do not hate the coaches personally. If you are using the programs and are finding success, WONDERFUL! I’m really happy that you found something to work for you! I think it’s great that they have a lot of workout programs to choose from with many styles to fit everyone’s level of fitness. I (as in ME… my opinion) simply despise pyramid style marketing companies that love to push their products using the angle that it’s a miracle cure that will totally work for you in only 30-90 days. Fitness doesn’t work like that. Don’t buy in for the hype.. buy in because it fits with your goals. End rant/.

ALLLL that being said… I’ve been looking into the 21 Day Fix program. I’ve read a few blogs.. real people not affiliated with BB.. and I really like the concept. I’ve mention in previous posts how I was trying out IIFYM style eating combined with mostly clean eating.. but I’ve been struggling. I find planning is a bit difficult to coordinate.. especially as I go to summer BBQs, wedding showers, weddings, vacations. I feel like I’ve just been incorporating protein/carbs/veggies in every meal.. but the proportions may not be correct. Enter the 21 Day Fix program.

If you haven’t heard about it.. the 21 Day Fix program incorporates the use of color coded containers in order to implement portion control and proportion control. You simply fill the containers with the intended food group using an approved food list, and eat the recommended amount of containers designated for your target calorie range for weight loss. This is a great simple concept for beginners to learn how to portion control and still eat the foods they want to eat. I eat plenty of wonderful foods.. I simply have a portion control and proportion control problem. I feel like this concept will help me meal plan more efficiently.

21 Day Fix program

21 Day Fix program

I considered buying the program (which is a little pricey at an average of $75 for the package including the workouts, the nutrition guide, and the containers.) I like the concept of the containers.. but I’m not a beginner at this. I feel like I can use the program concept by simply using the food list and recommended proportions, and measuring out my food. I have tons of containers at home and really don’t have any room for more… plus.. who wants to be cleaning out all those containers all the time? I also don’t really need the workouts, as I A) frequent my gym 3-5 days/week and B) am limited to what I can do b/c of my knee issue. So I did a little research and found the program principles.

There are 6 different color containers that come with the program-

Green = Veggies (1 cup volume)
Purple = Fruit (1 cup volume)
Red = Protein (6 oz- 3/4 cup)
Yellow = Carbs (5.3 oz- 2/3 cup)
Blue = Healthy fats (2.7 oz- 1/3 cup)
Orange = Seeds/dressings (2 oz- 1/4 cup)

 For my needed calorie range (based on my own measure metabolism test results) I should eat 3 green containers, 2 purple, 4 red, 2 yellow, 1 blue, 1 orange, and 2 tsp of oils daily. When you list it out like that.. it doesn’t seem like a lot… but actually.. some of the container sizes are way bigger than I would have allowed myself to eat of certain foods. I would never really eat seeds.. and I usually only give myself 1 tbs of dressing on a salad. I would only give myself 2 tbs of guacamole with a meal.. when according to this.. I can have 1/3 cup! (80 g instead of 60 g).

Approved food list.. found on Pinterest, but believe it comes from www.thefitnessfocus.com

Approved food list.. found on Pinterest, but believe it comes from http://www.thefitnessfocus.com

I found a blog that had a calendar made out for her 21 day fix meal plan for a week. I thought that would be a wonderful way of organizing the foods (giving I’m not buying the containers) to make my meals and make sure I can stick with the plan. I made one for this week, including my meals I already ate up to this point (which was on Wednesday.) I discovered that while I was eating good healthy foods, I was lacking in the vegetable department, and over-doing my carbs and fruits. This got me real excited because I realized this would be a wonderful method to help me plan my food for the week and get all the proportions I need to stay on track. And if anyone has ever tried to meal plan… you know it’s hard to stick with it if you don’t plan way ahead. Winging it is bad, and I think I’ve been doing that way too much.. which is why I’m not seeing changes. (That and sneaking into the ice cream before bed was probably not helping :-p)

My meals this week.. Made this on Wed.. was able to plan ahead for Fri and Sun. Sat we're going to a wedding.. which is why it's not really filled out. The green color highlighting means I hit the goal for the day, red means I did not, yellow means I didn't, but it's inconsequential.

My meals this week.. Made this on Wed.. was able to plan ahead for Fri and Sun. Where it says “(1/2)” next to a food means half a serving. Sat we’re going to a wedding.. which is why it’s not really filled out. The green color highlighting in the bottom table means I hit the goal for the day, red means I did not, yellow means I didn’t, but it’s inconsequential.

I was then curious about recipes. I love to play with new recipes.. I usually do a new one every week for my husband and I. But if I was going to follow this method of eating.. it would be hard to make a meal for both of us and get the proper proportions. My husband isn’t interested in monitoring his food. And being Italian.. he likes to eat. I make healthy meals for us, but he always wants me to double the recipe and eats very large portions. It’s not uncommon for us to buy 2-3 lbs of ground meat for tacos. (despite my wanting to only buy 1 lb.) I decided to check out Pinterest for some meal ideas and found a lot of recipes specifically for this program… complete with container counts. This makes recipes super easy! and I can pick one out and plan to make it over the weekend, filling in the rest of my day’s meals around it. YAY!

Next Week's meal plan... Fri-Sun is not filled in yet b/c I'm not sure what we're doing yet. I'll probably figure it out by mid week.

Next Week’s meal plan… Fri-Sun is not filled in yet b/c I’m not sure what we’re doing yet. I’ll probably figure it out by mid week.

I logged my meal plan for next week into MyFitnessPal. I found that not only am I very close to my calorie goals.. I’m also very close to my macro ratios. Sweet!

MyFitnessPal stats for next Monday

MyFitnessPal stats for next Monday

I’m real excited about trying this out. And I’m more excited that I’m not paying money for it- just using my own measuring devices and my food scale. My husband thinks I’m kinda nuts. His response was.. “but you already measure stuff.. so this isn’t going to do anything for you.” Maybe maybe not… but at least it’s free and I’ll be eating healthy proper portioned & proportioned foods 🙂 I want to add- I do not think that this will be a magic solution that will “fix” me in 21 days. I plan on using it way longer than just the 21 days. I do feel like it may help me reach my goals of reducing my body fat percentage and overall weight… but I know it will be a few months at best before I get there. I just want to use the principles of this program to help me keep my nutrition on track!