Wednesday, February 29, 2012

bento #124

Pretty basic, nothing too interesting.  However, I'm in love with my bento for tomorrow!

- six turkey meatballs
- baby carrots, asparagus, and a strawberry.

This bento only has 156 calories, but it's really more like one of my mini-meals/snack than a whole meal. I've joined Calorie Camp on Calorie Count so have been logging calories.  Feel free to look me up-- I'm slovakiasteph!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

bento #123

Bento from my Sunday afternoon walk... hiked 10 miles and ate this before I headed to evening church. 

- salmon cakes (salmon, 1 egg, breadcrumbs, dill, and pepper)
- strawberries
- asparagus
- baby carrots and a mushroom

The salmon cakes look a bit boring, but I think the color in the bottom tier makes up for it.  :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Need to get more vegetables in your diet?

I don't consider myself an expert by any means, but I am happy with the way I'm able to incorporate vegetables in my meals easily and thought I'd share a few tips.

1: When you make a meal, ask "how can I put veg in here?"  Try not to cook anything/make a meal WITHOUT vegetables in the main dish!  I made taco meat the other day... cut up peppers and onions to add to the meat.  Not only does it stretch it, but I got a serving of veg, too!

2: If you're still a little hungry after your meal, fill it with veg.  The fiber and water fill me up, and I feel full without eating many more calories.  I'll often make a quick salad after (or before) my main meal.

3: Aim for one cooked and one raw veg per lunch and dinner for some variety.  The other day I made chicken paprikas and put green peppers, mushrooms, and onion in the sauce (even though the original recipe doesn't call for veg) then thought "now, what vegetable should I have?"  :)  I was thinking raw vegetable, so had some sliced cucumber.

4: You can't eat them if they're not around.  Keep a variety in the refrigerator.

5: But, don't waste them!  If you're not using them, plan how you will and make a menu that has not only a main dish but the sides/veg as well.

Remember that a woman needs 5 servings a day and a man needs 6... that's more than a serving of green beans at dinner.  ;)

I hope this will help someone... does anyone else have tips to share?  Please do!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

workout DVDs

I've been trying to get healthier lately.  This involves eating less processed foods and exercising more (I wouldn't mind losing 8 or so pounds).  My diet already consisted mostly of protein and vegetables with some whole grain on the side, so that was pretty good.  I've switched from dairy milk to coconut (to avoid growth hormones) and also to organic yogurt.  Haven't figured out what to do about cheese.  After that, I'll move on to meat, but I really can't afford to go all-organic.  I can't wait for summer so I can get my veg from the farmer's stand a mile away.

Also, I thought I'd share my thoughts on a few workout videos.  I'm a big fan of Jillian Michaels and although I usually am not interested in celebrities and what they have to say, I trust Michaels' perspective and even listen to her podcast every week.  Two years ago I bought my first workout DVD.

30 Day Shred, as my first attempt at any kind of workout, was very difficult for me, even at Level 1.  I have very little upper body strength.  When I revisited the DVD last week, I found the moves not quite as difficult but still can't get through any upper body work completely and with gusto-- especially push-ups!  Still, it's a good workout.

I also bought Cardio Kickbox at the same time but never popped it in until last week.  Apparently I'm a big fan of cardio and can get through that more easily than any kind of strength move.  The video is FAST, though, and I sometimes have a difficult time catching my breath, keeping up, and keeping my balance with the pace.  I feel warmed up about 30 seconds in (and I keep my house at 60 degrees!) and have usually started sweating after a few minutes.  But, it's fun, and the 20 minutes passes quickly.

Then today, I tried Ripped in 30.  I prefer this to 30DS as I can complete most of the moves.  :D  Staying in plank for 30 seconds left me shaking, though; I have to remember to breathe.  :)  Once again, the 2 minutes of cardio are my favorite part of this.  Once I get used to the moves, this will probably become a favorite.

I'm not the type of person to go to the gym, so staying at home and working out is great for me.  20 minutes leaves me feeling like I've accomplished something but I'm not too tired for the rest of my day.  I do hike as well, anywhere from 3-10 mile stretches, and typically hike about 8 miles a week.  Once spring comes I can get my bike out as well.

Hope this is helpful and perhaps convinces my readers to give it a try!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

bento #122

This is probably the most boring bento I've ever posted.  :D  At least there are three different kinds of foods!

- broccoli, raw.  I'm actually starting to like raw broccoli
- chicken marinated in coconut milk, cilantro, and ginger: sprinkled with sesame seeds
- clementine, peeled so I could eat it in the car

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

bento #121

This looks remarkably similar to the lunch I posted yesterday, except these were eaten a week apart.  :)  A bit behind in posting.

- boneless skinless chicken thigh marinated in coconut milk, ginger, and cilantro
- whole wheat spaghetti noodles with asparagus and orange pepper (mixed with soy sauce and mirin)
- broccoli lining the side
- two clementines

I'm trying to eat healthier these days: more whole foods and less processed foods.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

bento #120

I keep using the same containers, mostly because they're larger than my others.

- Chicken, bok choy, carrot, and red pepper stir-fry over brown rice
- two clementines

A snack in the onigiri container: greek yogurt and granola in the two tiers

Friday, February 10, 2012

bento #119

Well, my bentos these days mostly consist of the same thing.  A chicken thigh cooked some-way-or-another and whatever fruits or vegetables I have in my refrigerator.

- hb egg
- broccoli, raw (and I actually ate it!  It wasn't too bad)
- clementine
- chicken teriyaki (finally less burnt)
- baby carrots
- some red pepper for garnish

I really need to find more color to add!  Orange seems to be a dominant theme these days.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

bento #118

On Thursdays I have a busy day... sometimes visiting with a friend, therapy appointment, quick hike, teaching... so I need some sustenance.

- cucumber slices
- chicken thigh marinated in soy sauce; sprinkled with sesame seeds.  tasty!
- yellow pepper pieces
- one pickle, chunked
- clementine

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

bento #117

I made some vegetable curry and took the leftovers to work.  It was very spicy, so spicy I couldn't finish it all, even though I was hungry.  Didn't think I put more curry paste in than usual, but I guess I did!

- back tier: curry with carrot, yellow and green pepper, and onion over rice
- front tier: cucumber, hb egg, penguin with salt and pepper, clementine