I’m always hungry. I was raised as a snacker; eat when you’re hungry, don’t restrict yourself with time, and eat what you want in small amounts. But, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized my snacking tendencies weren’t the problem but my choices of what to eat, were. I’m not addicted to candy or carb heavy food, but I crave fried food: French fries, hamburgers, nasty Crunchwrap Supremes, basically anything that is the absolute worst for you. I won’t tell you what I’ve done has been easy, or that I haven’t cheated a few days (or a week) in between, but it’s all about consistency and feeling what your body needs to be successful.
I work out around three to five times a week. I have to stay satiated and energized throughout the day. I didn’t always eat breakfast, and I know “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” (blah blah blah), but in college a cup of black coffee was enough. But a cup of coffee alone was what lead me to be starving by 3:30 pm, and at a drive thru at 4:00.
To start, it’s important no matter what you’re eating, to look at serving sizes. I can promise you that I never looked at a serving size but stuck with a “hey I’m eating healthy” mentality. Please look at serving sizes and thank you for listening to my Ted Talk.
- Oatmeal with ISO Whey Protein. I’ll admit, I didn’t always like oatmeal. But lately, my day begins with a half a cup of quick oats in combination with a protein powder for both flavor and to get additional protein into my diet. I’ve found that I don’t eat enough protein as it is, and it gives me the boost I need. I also drink one to three cups of black coffee with this depending on what happened the night before. If you want to put milk and sugar in that’s your business, but I like my hot bean water, thank you.
- Two hard boiled eggs. I love hard boiled eggs and if I could eat deviled eggs for every meal I would. However, my waist line cannot handle that much mayonnaise (I frickin’ love mayo). I eat these with or without the yoke and usually put hot sauce on top, because I’m Hispanic, and if you know anything we put hot sauce on everything.
- Piece of fruit. Dependent on season I usually eat what is on hand. Raspberries, strawberries, an apple or banana. Anything to get that sweet kick in the brunch hour.
- Diet Coke. Treat yo’ self.
- Homemade Chipotle Bowl
“Chipotle is my liiiiiife”…sorry. Anyway, I love Chipotle burrito bowls, so I make them at home. There’s two ways to make the rice: either in a rice cooker or in a microwave. Honestly, my method depends on if I meal prep or not. If I meal prep, I make white or Jasmine rice in a rice cooker with cilantro and lime juice and have about four cups for the week. If it’s in the microwave, I use Uncle Ben’s Ready Rice in the 90 second microwaveable packs in the Spanish Rice variety. I add in canned, drained black beans, a small amount of shredded cheese and plain Greek yogurt. Not only is Greek yogurt better than sour cream for a variety of reasons, but it’s less calorie dense, a protein and adds the creamy texture everyone wants. Add meat (I like mine vegetarian), avocado if desired, and again, hot sauce.
- Pita Chips. I try and quench my salty kick in the afternoon. If I’m really hungry, I’ll eat them with some hummus but most of the time, the ten to 20 pita chips is enough (I wish it was more, but serving size).
- Baked Tilapia with green beans, roasted brussel sprouts and a baked sweet potato. Dinner is my favorite time of the day. I prepare my tilapia and brussel sprouts the same: salt, lemon pepper seasoning and sometimes a little garlic powder. And the best part? I use ONE pan. Roast the sprouts and bake the tilapia in one pan, and wrap the sweet potato in foil and let it steam. I also buy my green beans frozen in the steam-able bags which cuts down on my time and last forever. Such a yummy well-rounded meal that’s easy to make, and even better on the wallet.
- Glass of red wine. I don’t drink white. It’s weird.
- Chocolate rice cake with peanut butter. Yes, my desert is a rice cake. I wish it was chocolate cake, I wish it was a huge pint of ice cream, but it’s not. And truly after the last almost ten months, I savor it.
“Love your body at any size, and don’t let
anyone convince you otherwise”
10 Tips From 10 Months of Growth:
- Eat things you actually like. You can meal prep a week’s worth of brussel sprouts, but if you don’t enjoy eating them, they will sit untouched and ultimately go bad in your fridge. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll end up just throwing out the Tupperware all together.
- Keep your promise to eating healthy. Of course it’s so much easier to Postmate Chick-Fil-A, but so is pre-heating an oven.
- Don’t have designated “cheat meals”. For me, those cheat meals turned into cheat days, then cheat weeks and eventually it’s time to start over again. In saying that, If I’m out with friends and decide to eat a burger, I don’t feel bad for myself or regret it after, but I counteract it with making healthier choices later.
- Choose alcoholic beverages wisely. Be basic – a vodka soda is around 64 cals, where a Bud Light is anywhere from 110 to 200 cals. Depending on size, three to four Bud Lights (can you tell I miss beer?) is the equivalent to my entire dinner.
- I don’t use a scale anymore. I measure myself by BMI because I was obsessing over a number constantly and not only was it discouraging, but weight can fluctuate by so many factors that it isn’t always accurate. Instead, I measure my BMI once a month and feel the overwhelming urge to work harder for that goal.
- Be satisfied, not full. There’s always that point of no return where one more helping or one more bite puts me over the edge. I try to drink a glass of water in that moment to see if I’m truly hungry or if I’m happy, but thirsty (always thirsty).
- Don’t keep treats in the house. I’m less likely to eat a bag of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos if I have to put on pants to get them.
- You don’t lose weight by counting calories. MyFitnessPal is a great option to keep yourself accountable for what you’re eating, but I suggest using it for tracking macros and not calories. I was feeling extremely lethargic at the beginning of my health journey (mostly from my lack of chicken nuggets) and I found I wasn’t eating nearly enough protein, but way too many carbs.
- Stop rewarding yourself with food. I like making goals and rewarding myself with a new clothing item or something for my home that I’ve been wanting for awhile. Something tangible, not edible.
- Go easy on yourself. Weight loss doesn’t happen overnight. I can do ab workouts every day (and I nearly do) but that doesn’t mean my stomach pooch is going to disappear automatically. I live by the rule: 80% is what you eat, and the other 20 is how you put that nutrition to use. After a certain point it becomes a lifestyle, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to put in the work to change.