Tag Archives: food

Winter Is Coming, Cuffing Season Is Over

14 Nov

The end is near, skinny people. At least for my single skinny people. The terrible season is upon us. Worse than that, Mother Nature has decided to be a hater and send another Polar Vortex our way a little early this year. Which can mean only one thing: Cuffing season is coming to a close.

What’s cuffing season? If you have to ask, you must be booed up. Good for you. You don’t have to do the seasonal merry-go-round of dating to find out who you’ll be cuddled up with come winter. Because winter is is most definitely coming. You won’t want to go outside in this.

snow

courtesy of Tumblr

My disdain for the worst season ever is well documented. It’s cold, it’s rainy, and it makes my allergies act up. One of the other things I hate about this time of year is cuffing season. It’s like playing Duck-Duck-Goose as an adult…but with nighttime cuddling once the object of your affection is caught. Coupling cuffing season and fall together can keep a girl busy. Mostly, you’ve got to get your stores in order because you’ll be having company during those long winter nights.

It can be easy to fall back on old faithfuls like cookies and chips when you know that you and boo will be laid up in the house binging “Breaking Bad.” But wintertime is not the time to fall off track. Here are some things to keep in your cabinet for you and winter boo to snack on in the in-between time.

1. Hummus. I love hummus. Like…we have a thing. I am dedicated to Sabra’s Supremely Spicy Hummus. It’s the stuff dreams are made of. But instead of picking up a bag of pita chips, I suggest using colorful peppers as your dipping mechanism. Red and yellow peppers are the best, especially if they’re cold.

2. Popcorn. Olivia Pope may not be able to make up her mind between Jake and Fitz (pick Jake!!), but she does know a good nighttime snack combo: wine and popcorn. Instead of putting a bag in the microwave, you can pop your own kernels over the stove. It’s less sodium and you can control how much you make. And there’s nothing wrong with a glass of wine to top off the night.

3. Goldfish Crackers. I understand that my obsession with Xtra Cheddar Goldfish could, by some, be considered unstable. But I don’t care. I control my need to devour an entire bag by putting them into the smaller Ziploc bags. They’re great for portion control. Plus, if winter boo grabs one of the small bags, I don’t have to worry about him eating all my Goldfish. Cuz he might die.

4. Fruit. Summer is usually the best time for the good fruit like berries and melon. But fall and winter will give you some of the ripest apples and pears around. You can still hook up a nifty little fruit salad or just slice some of those suckers up and eat them with peanut butter. Because peanut butter is awesome.

Bonus: You two aren’t going to spend all your time in bed. Eventually you’re going to have to get up and consume actual food. Maybe you could cook together. Because nothing’s sexier than a man who can cook. So saute some tilapia. Roast some veggies. And finish off that bottle of wine. Because Winter is Coming and it has no patience for your deprived cabinets.

‘Snackpocolypse’

4 Sep

fod_snackEverybody snacks. It’s actually encouraged to keep your metabolism up. But while some people see a handful of almonds or some apple slices as ideal, others take to a back of Goldfish crackers and wash it down with a Cherry Coke.

Look, we’ve all slipped. But schools can sometimes be the worst. When I was in high school, my lunches consisted of cheese fries and a soda, chips and a soda, a soda or nothing at all. We had open lunch, so occasionally we’d go out and order Chinese food, McDonald’s, Taco Bell or Subway. Our menu options were…inadequate. We had a salad bar, but not a lot of veggie options (plus, I’ve never been a big fan of buffet lines). We had Domino’s delivered every day, but a daily slice of pizza was not always appetizing.

That was more than 15 years ago. Not much has changed. Some schools have done good work, and started their own snack bars. Others have banned soda machines. But not everyone has caught on. Many teens, faced with the opportunity to make their own decisions, will opt for a Snickers and an orange soda instead of some cucumber slices and some water for a snack. Honestly, a Snickers bar sounds more appetizing. Still it’s not always the right thing to do.

What kids need is someone to save them from themselves. They need a hero like Katniss or Tris. Or even Hit-Girl.

This video is hilarious, and not just because Michelle Obama wants to get back to watching “Frozen.” Chloe recognizing she’s not different from everyone else, she just likes apples? I died!

If you’ve got a teen, maybe they’ll get a kick out of this video, too. And maybe they’ll think twice about how that two-liter soda could turn them into a sugar zombie.

What did you think of the video? Have you ever turned into a sugar zombie?

photo courtesy of Funny or Die

End of Summer Vacation

2 Sep
This summer, I could have been doing more of this...

This summer, I could have been doing more of this…

The worst season of all is upon us, but don’t let that get you down. If you’re in New York, you’re experiencing the long-awaited heatwave that was promised at the end of May. Let’s use it to our advantage.

Yes, Labor Day is over. Though the wretched fall season won’t begin until Sept. 23, its’ Back to School and Back to Work for the rest of us. We took the summer off to lay about on the beach, in the grass, by the grill, etc. It was too nice outside to stay in the gym. Working out seemed like a good idea, but there were sooooo many concerts to go attend. Sure, we all ate lots of fresh fruits and veggies this summer, but those bottomless mimosas couldn’t be left alone on the table, could they?

We just have to come to grips with the work that’s ahead of us. So how do you turn off summer brain to prepare the grunt work of fall?

1. Deal. If the first step toward recovery is acceptance, the first step toward getting back on track is admitting you got off track. It happens to all of us. And you. Will. Deal! Don’t beat yourself up about it, just accept you’re at a new starting point.

But this seemed like more fun.

But this seemed like more fun.

2. How’d you get here? Summer days almost require laziness. From brunch to the day party to the concert in the park later that night, you’ve found yourself doing things you wouldn’t make time for in the fall or winter. For me, it wasn’t so much the lack of activity (though I didn’t grind as hard as I usually do during the year) as it was the alcohol. Between the vacations and brunches, I emptied a few cups. Alcohol causes your body to burn its calories faster, leaving the food you eat stored as fat. So, a lot of those omelettes went to my waist line.

3. Remember the fun times. Working out and monitoring your diet can be a drag. It’s no fun being the responsible one. But there had to have been a point in the journey where you not only enjoyed the fruits of your labor, you also enjoyed some of the laborious acts. Is there a dish you really enjoy making? Is there a class you haven’t been to in a while? When was the last time you saw your friends at the gym? One of the easy ways to stay off track is focusing on the negative. This is your journey, and having a negative attitude about it will keep you from doing good work.

4. The never-ending journey. The weight-loss process and healthy lifestyle aren’t just things you’re doing for a little while. Full commitment means understanding this is a life change. And in life you will stumble while trying to make yourself better. You didn’t fall off your diet. You didn’t stop your workout program. You didn’t pay much attention to what you were doing. We’re in the season now of getting it back together. Do that with the knowledge that your focus shifted for a short while on your lifetime journey.

I don’t know about you, but this summer was a fun one, even if it felt a little short. I got to see friends and family I hadn’t seen in a while. I took some awesome trips and met some really great people. I can incorporate this summer’s lessons into my lifetime journey, just as you can. Let’s do it, people!

How was your summer? Did you enjoy it so much you feel you may have gotten off the fitness track? What are your plans for fall?

Recipe: Mini Turkey Meatloaf

29 Aug

meatloaf

Time: 30 minutes to prepare; 35 minutes to cook

Ingredients

  • 1 pound turkey burger
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp. of herbs (any combination of thyme, rosemary, parsley, basil, etc.)
  • 1 8-oz. can low-sodium tomato sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. prepared mustard
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar

Procedure

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine all ingredients in bowl. Mixing with your hands is best, but a wooden spoon will also do.
  3. Form the mixture into 4-6 loaves.
  4. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet for 35 minutes, or until the juices run clear.
  5. While the loaves are baking, mix together the ketchup, mustard and brown sugar. Spoon over the loaves for another 10 minutes.

Verdict

Can I be honest with you? I actually really enjoy meatloaf. I love that it’s easy to make and that it’s comfort food. I’ve made no secret of my love for comfort food. This recipe is a combination of what I know of cooking and a few added tips from the Extreme Fat Smash Diet cookbook. If you like meatloaf, you’ll love this. It’s less fat than ground beef, and the portions are smaller because it’s individual loaves. I served mine with sweet potatoes and roasted Brussels sprouts.

Weight-Loss Draft

18 Aug
You see me struggling, but the woman reflected in the mirror is part of my O-line. That's Willa.

You see me struggling, but the woman reflected in the mirror is part of my O-line. That’s Willa.

Skinny People, my favorite time of year is fast approaching. In 17 days, the Packers will face the Seahawks in the first game of the NFL season.

I. Can’t. WAIT!

I’ve made my love of football abundantly clear on this blog. It’s a fun game to watch. Over the years I’ve been able to garner an understanding of the rules (even if they do change season to season).

What I haven’t been able to do is get into pre-season football. I understand it’s necessity. Teams need to weed out the players that aren’t going to work throughout the season. It’s a good way to get fans excited about the upcoming season. And it’s a good way to get superfans started on their fantasy drafts.

Fantasy drafts are where people, from superfans to the indifferent gambler, draft players from various teams. Trades can be made throughout the season and some leagues offer winners bragging rights or even money. But to be a good general manager, you have to know what skills are key to a great team. You can pick a marquee player because you like him and he’ll get more minutes. You also have to keep in mind what kind of injuries this player has had, and what kind of team he plays with.

Cicely, how the hell does this relate to weight loss? you’re asking.

Well, many times on this blog, I’ve said that your weight-loss journey is an individual sport, and it is. You will lose the weight on your own. You will do the work and you will monitor your eating habits as an individual. But somewhere along the way, you’re going to need support. You’re going to need someone to put a bug in your ear (or up your butt) to encourage you to do better.

Getting yourself ready to take the journey is like drafting for your fantasy team. You’ll need to have a good defense ready, but also have a squad of support that will help you get a win. Just remember, you’re the quarterback on this team, so you call the plays.

If you’re totally on your own (without any groups or classes to attend), then your running back may very well be your trainer. A good trainer is hard to find. So when you find him/her, grab hold with both hands. Like the relationship between a quarterback and running back, you want someone who understands your rhythms and goals and works with you to help you achieve them. Your trainer cannot and will not do the work for you. But he will be the first to notice when you’re doing better and when you’re slacking off. A good trainer is not only someone who prepares you physically for the challenges ahead, but is also like a therapist who will listen. The beginning of your weight-loss journey is a shock to the system, and a trainer knows when you’re body is trying to psych your mind out. He will listen to you complain, and then show you that you can do more.

After you’ve picked your running back you’ve got to have your O-line (offensive line). These people are close family and friends. I don’t always advise letting people in on your journey, because it’s personal. But close family and friends whom you know will be nothing but supportive  should be clued in on what’s going on with you. They will be the ones who will compliment you when you’re doing well. They’ll join you on morning walks or runs for you to have some company. For me, the best person on my O-line was my grandmother. When I began my journey while living in Atlanta, I had to let her know that all of her Sunday dinner usuals weren’t going to work for me. So she would make sure to have some sliced cucumbers (my favorite) set aside for me. Or ff she was frying chicken that day, she’d bake a couple pieces for me to have with my meal.

The defensive end really relies on you. If you have a lot of junk food in your house, and you’re committed to starting your journey, then that stuff has to go. If you’re planning to start running, you’re going to need good shoes. Head to the store now and get sized for the right shoes that will work with the surface you’re running on. You know whether you’re an early riser. Don’t schedule training sessions or classes at times you know you’re not going to be up for. Don’ t set yourself up to fail.