WIAW #8 (March 14, 2012)

Hi everyone, how are you doing today?

I’ll admit, I have not been doing my best, and this past week has been a little bit rough for me. I have definitely not been feeling 100%. I have been dealing with some tough, emotional issues and have been a little stressed and overwhelmed, to say the least. Given my current state, I have been all about finding ways to incorporate chocolate into my life (in as healthy a way as possible), and all about  making quick meals that are as easy as possible.

However, despite my rough week, I have been finding that I have still been trying to stay as healthy and as well-balanced as possible when it comes to my eating. If I am  mentally stressed or overwhelmed or what not, there is no need to take this out physically on myself as well…  I find that if I make it a priority to physically take care of myself, I mentally tend to feel better as well…. even if I have to resort more to prepackaged or convenient foods. There is always a way to make it work, right?

On that note, lets move on to the food… Happy WIAW! Here is what I ate yesterday….

Breakfast: 6:30 am

I was inspired by Heather once again (I love her blog!) and decided to try out her go-to breakfast yesterday morning: Chocolate Protein Pudding Oats.

I made mine with:

This breakfast tasted so indulgent and chocolatey, yet was packed with whole grains, protein and healthy fats…  I got to satisfy a chocolate craving and eat a filling, nutritious breakfast all in one… that is a win-win in my book.

Snack: 10:00 am

Midmorning, I snacked on some almonds, raisins and soy nuts to hold me over until lunch.

Lunch: 1:00 pm

I didn’t have to go into work yesterday, so I got to eat lunch with one of my favorite people… my boyfriend, Jon. It was so nice to get to hang out on a random Tuesday afternoon. I ate a pre-made Whole Foods Salad (that was so good), and he ate a Chipotle chicken burrito. We were both quite content with our choices.

I have never had this salad before, but I was quite a fan. I especially liked the peanut noodles and cilantro that was in the mix, and it was such a nice treat (since I never buy my lunch… especially during the week). When times are stressful and I really don’t want to cook or make myself food, I see nothing wrong with buying an overpriced salad here and there…. this one was definitely a winner.

I also had a Honeycrisp apple with my lunch as Jon and I played Family Feud on my phone…. anyone else addicted to this app? I can’t stop playing… which is saying  a lot because I am not a big game player.

 Snack (?): 4:00 pm

I wasn’t hungry for my normal afternoon snack yesterday, but I was craving a kombucha, so I treated myself (and my sister, Sami… I got her one too) to one. We drank them while doing some schoolwork outside a local coffee shop. it was my first time trying the mango flavor, and I definitely liked it. I usually don’t stray from Gingerberry and the Triology flavors, and while this one wasn’t as acidic/vinegar-y as my usual flavor loves, I still really enjoyed it. I love kombucha… why must they be so expensive?!?

I also forgot how much I LOVE (and NEED) sunlight in my life… it was soooo beautiful yesterday, and it better stay that way. I am loving it.

Dinner: 5:30 pm

Before  my usual Tuesday night Body Attack class last night, I made myself a big Greek-inspired salad for dinner that contained:

  • spinach
  • chickpeas
  • cubed tofu
  • radishes
  • carrots
  • broccoli
  • tomato
  • goat cheese
  • greek dressing

I also had a piece of toast with some hummus and a squirt of lemon (I am loving the hummus and lemon combination, it’s so good).

Snack: 8:30 pm

And lastly, as my dessert/post-workout snack I had banana smoothie bowl that was made by combining the following in my Magic Bullet:

  • 1/2 banana
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 ice cubes
  • a small spoonful of pb on top

This was very refreshing and delicious, but I am having some issues with my magic bullet…. I can never get all of the ice to fully blend! Does anyone else have this problem/have any suggestions on how to solve this issue?

And that concludes my meals/snacks from yesterday… I hope you all had some delicious food yesterday as well!

Questions:

How do you stay healthy when busy/stressed?

What is your favorite smoothie recipe (with the warm weather I see myself getting inspired…. I need ideas!)

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WIAW #4 (February 15, 2012)

Hi there, Happy Wednesday! One day closer to weekend….

And also time for another What I ate Wednesday!

This WIAW post documents everything I ate yesterday (2/14). I was going to show you Monday’s meals this week, but I figured my Valentine’s Day-inspired meals were a bit more exciting to share….

Breakfast: 6:15 AM

For breakfast yesterday, I decided to get in the Valentine’s day spirit by having a chocolate inspired breakfast (that I previously showed in yesterday’s post). I had a Fitnessista-inspired breakfast cookie made with the following:

  • 1/2  oats
  • 1 tbsp pb
  • 1 tbsp Hershey’s Dark Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 banana
  • splash soy milk
  • topped with 2 chopped strawberries + strawberry jelly

I LOVE breakfast cookies as a quick, delicious oatmeal alternative in the morning, but I go through phases where I forget about them.  I might need to start bringing them back into a normal rotation in the mornings. They are super easy to throw together the night before, and it’s so nice to have breakfast waiting for you in the morning. I especially enjoyed the chocolate addition in yesterday’s breakfast.

Snack: 9:45 am

I got a little hungry before a meeting I was scheduled to have at 10 am yesterday, so I snacked on a  little trail mix/cereal mixture that contained:

  • Kashi Honey Sunshine (about 1/2 c)
  • raisins + golden raisins
  • walnuts + almonds

Lunch: 12:15 pm

I usually eat lunch around 12, but I was pleasantly surprised to receive a phone call from the front desk at work  saying that a package had been delivered to me:

My boyfriend, Jon, sent me flowers! I was so surprised (I have never had anything sent to me at work before)! I had no idea he was doing it… and am quite impressed with his sneakiness. He’s the best.

For lunch I had a tempeh, cheddar, spinach and jelly sandwich on a whole wheat sandwich thin (a combo I have been meaning to try out for a while!), with some carrot sticks, celery and snap peas on the side.

This particular sandwich  combo ended up being really good! I loved the sweet jelly mixed with the salty/savory tempeh and cheddar cheese. I love eating tempeh in sandwiches, and I am just loving the sweet/salty combo these days…. (side note, if you’ve never tried tempeh or need some new ideas check out Meghann’s post… she has a lot of great suggestions!). I also had  a Fugi apple with lunch as well.

Snack: 1:30 pm

My coworker, Amanda, was so sweet and baked/brought in some Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies for the office yesterday in order to celebrate Valentine’s Day . She found the recipe on Pinterest (we bound over our mutual love of the site), and I must say, these brownies were pretty delicious. It served as the perfect afternoon Valentine’s Day snack.

Dinner: 7:00 pm

we were extra classy and put our seltzer and pepsi in wine glasses....

Jon and I decided to made dinner together yesterday to “celebrate.” We made Sautéed Citrus Salmon with roasted potatoes (tossed with basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, thyme and garlic) and garlic green beans (we sautéed them with minced garlic, salt and pepper).

This meal ended up being pretty simple to make (fish-making always intimidates me a little and I don’t know why… it’s easy), and the salmon turned out so well. It was really good. I found the recipe on Pinterest (notice a theme here….), and I would highly recommend it.  The lemon peel and lemon juice added a really nice flavor to the fish and it had plenty of crispy edge pieces (my favorite part!). I am pretty sure this is one the best meals Jon and I have made together. It’s one of those meals you want to go back and eat again (or have dreams about eating… anyone else have this happen to them? I can’t be the only one that thinks about delicious food all.the.time.).

Dessert: 8:00 pm

For dessert we had some chocolate mousse that I made on Monday, topped with some whipped cream and strawberries. I can’t even describe to you how good this stuff is. I wish I could swim in it… I even debated having another glass full of it when I finished the glass above. It is so chocolatey and delicious. I am totally making this whenever I  have a dinner party (since I do that so often?…one day) or want to “impress” guests (it is so “fancy,” but so easy to make). Go make this. You won’t regret it.

Overall, I must say that I had a great day of eating yesterday.  Everything I ate was amazing…. I don’t think I could even choose what the best meal of the day was, I enjoyed them all.

What was the best thing you ate yesterday?

Easy (and healthy!) ways to get your V-day chocolate fix

Happy Valentine’s Day! Are you celebrating today?

While I know many people are hater’s of this particular holiday,  I am on the more neutral end of the spectrum. I, more times than not, have not had a “valentine” on Valentine’s day, but I  feel like the day should focus less on whether or not you are in a relationship and should be more about celebrating those that you love in general. I know when I was growing up my dad would always buy my sister’s and I mini Russel Stover chocolate boxes, and when I went to college,  my mom started a tradition of sending me an edible arrangement every year.  I never felt like I needed a valentine to take part in the day.

 The holiday doesn’t have to be bitter, it should be about celebrating love…. and having an excuse to eat chocolate all day, anyone with me?

Speaking of chocolate, does Valentine’s day make anyone else crave it like crazy (the big chocolate hearts in every supermarket and drugstore probably don’t help)? I feel like it is mandatory to eat something chocolately and delicious today. While I like to eat big pieces of chocolate cake, chocolate bars and heart-shaped boxes of candy as much as the next girl, I believe there are healthier ways to enjoy it as well. If done the right way, it is possible to enjoy “indulgent” treats all day and not end up feeling lethargic with a sugar coma.

To celebrate, I thought I’d suggest some healthy ways to incorporate some chocolately goodness into your life today.

Breakfast ideas:

  • Chocolate breakfast cookie – This was my breakfast of choice this morning…

I made mine with:

-1/2 c oats
-1 tbsp pb
-1 tbsp Hershey’s dark cocoa powder
-1/2 banana
-splash soy milk
-topped with: 2 chopped strawberries + strawberry jelly

1/2 c oatmeal with added cocoa powder (doesn't look appetizing but is SO good

  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal – Mama Pea has a delicious recipe for this that I recommend (which my sister made this morning….)

Snack Ideas:

  • Chocolate-inspired trail mix (mix chocolate chips with some almonds, dried cranberries, and cereal….)
  • Warm a Chocolate Brownie Clif Z bar or any type of chocolate/oat based granola bar in the microwave for 3o seconds for an instant cake-like snack

  • 1 tbsp of Nutella or Justin’s chocolate Hazelnut butter/Chocolate Almond Butter with a chopped apple

Dessert Ideas:

  • “Apple sundae” – chop an apple into bite size chunks and place into a mug or small bowl. Top with a a few tsp chocolate sauce and a sprinkle of granola/sprinkles/raisins/small spoonful pb (the options are endless)…. my sister and I used to do this all the time. It’s rather tasty.
  • Healthified “chocolate mousse” – Mix  plain greek yogurt or cottage cheese with a few tsp of cocoa powder and honey or some chocolate pudding mix (a trick I learned from Julie!). Add some mini chocolate chips and chopped strawberries on top to make it extra delicious.
  • “Chocolate-covered” strawberries – chop some strawberries and top with  a few tablespoons of chocolate sauce –  my friend Mary is a big fan of this one… so simple but so good

(source: http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2011/11/06/one-minute-chocolate-cake)

Annd if all else fails and you really want something decadent, make this chocolate mousse. I made some last night to have as a Valentine’s day dessert  for later and it is SO GOOD. It’s not exactly healthy, but there is always room for a little treat here and there, right? I won’t lie, I licked the mixing bowl clean… I can’t wait to have some later.

I hope you have a great day!

What are your favorite ways to incorporate chocolate into your life? Any healthy breakfast/snack ideas??