Monday, October 23, 2017

Diet and Meal Prep

Okay, I'll be honest here. If there is one thing that stops me from reaching my fitness goals, it is actually my diet. My major weakness is carbohydrates and a lot of it. I love kakanin and breads. It is hard for me to eat lunch or dinner without rice. Most of all, I used to munch on carbohydrates alone during snack time. I would go for 2 slices of bread with peanut butter in the morning, ginataang bilo-bilo in the afternoon and maybe some chips before bedtime, then I'll end up bloating.

Abs are made in the kitchen, they say, but how true is that? Well, I do not know 'cos I am still trying to prove that to myself. I have no flat tummy nor defined abs to flaunt, although I can say that my waistline and lower belly has gotten smaller already after a year of consistently going to the gym. It's true that losing weight is 80% diet and only 20% exercise. I testify on that. Truly, what you put in your mouth plays a major role in weight management. So here I am again, writing about diet and meal prep as reference on my road to achieving my fitness goals.



Above is an ideal breakfast for me consisting of oat bran with skim milk topped with sliced banana, almonds, sunflower and chia seeds, dried prunes, and granola. Part of my routine is to prepare a weekly menu and base my grocery on it. I basically cannot make a shopping list without finishing my menu first. Additional to the regular weekly menu, I am now working on a separate breakfast and snack menu. Sounds a little crazy but I am doing this to avoid eating just about anything and end up carbo-loading in every meal.



This is one of my afternoon snacks last week.. cheese and egg sandwich. When I was a kid, I would get a very bad allergic reaction when eating chicken and egg. It all started when I was in grade 4 then came major flare ups when I was in grade 5, 1st year and then again 3rd year high school. I would be absent from school for days, my feet all wounded with nasty pus, my lymph nodes swollen, folds in my legs and arms super dry and itchy; even my face red and flaky. After finally finding an effective steroidal cream and getting rid of my flares, I decided to completely abstain from poultry products. Thanks God I didn't see my allergies that bad again and I was able to eat chicken and eggs after 3 years.



A menu from 2 weeks ago: skinless herbed chicken in a bed of beans. This is very easy to prepare. Just marinate your chicken in a little salt, freshly ground black pepper, paprika, cracked red pepper, oregano and thyme. After 30 minutes marination, arrange the vegetable/s in the bottom of the tray, top it with the chicken, drizzle some olive oil and bake from 25 to 30 minutes.

If there is an important lesson to take note that I think I have not written yet in this blog is to eat balanced diet in every major meal, breakfast, lunch and dinner. And if you are weight lifting and want to gain some muscles, make sure that protein is present not only in your big meals but in smaller meals, meaning morning and afternoon snacks as well (thanks Coach Miguel). If you can, focus on targeting your macros and not just your total calorie intake for the whole day. Macro counting is hard work, I know. I still can't get the hang of it. Anyway, there is this beautiful young lady I'm following in IG that inspires me a lot. Her name is Katie Crewe, a fitness coach and social media sensation. Like her, I am into a flexible diet regimen. I give in to my cravings from time to time and I do not have a lot of restrictions. I eat at buffet or eat-all-you-can restaurants once in a while, indulge into some Korean bingsu or froyo maybe once or twice a month, also get unlimited rice and fatty dishes; all of these fall into my weekend cheat days. Take note though that I seldom drink soda or juices and I already stopped using table sugar earlier this year. If I were to sweeten something, I use either coco sugar, raw honey or dried fruits. And I am a big fan of fish, seafood and vegetables. Monday to Friday, I eat mostly boiled and steamed dishes with lots of local vegetables.



Thursday, October 05, 2017

Finally, a no bake eggless birthday cake!

Looking for a perfect cake for my daughters on their birthday can be a hassle and a bit frustrating for me. Both of my girls are allergic to eggs and the younger one is even allergic to nuts and some dairy. Apparently, most cakes that are sold in bakeries or patisseries these days have eggs as one of the main ingredients, may contain some nuts and a lot of dairy products. I tried to check my old cake suppliers if they can make an egg-free cake for my daughters. End of the story, I was not accommodated so I didn't have a choice but to take the matter into my hands.




This is my eldest on her 9th birthday with the chocolate in cream cake that I made for her. It has no egg and it doesn't require cooking or baking, only refrigeration.



Look at that happy face. She can finally eat as many as she wants of her birthday cake. I am happy and relieved that I do not have to worry anymore about my girls getting itchy after eating a cake.




I know it doesn't look perfect but definitely tasted real nice. The layers of cream with ground graham crackers, wafer slices and shaved chocolate was yummy in every bite. Everybody loved it!

Will try to improve this recipe and share it in another blog post in the future. I am planning to add some fruits and a hint of jam next time. The elder daughter specially requested no fruit in her cake so I settled with mostly chocolate and crackers on this one.

If you have an egg-free, easy to make chocolate cake or whatever no bake cake that is a hit in your household, please feel free to share your recipe by dropping a non-clickable link below. Thanks in advance! :)
 


 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Old Transformation Photos

When I decided to resurrect this blog, one of the subjects I know I will be mostly writing about is fitness and maybe a little bit of nutrition for these are the things that I am pretty much interested into these days. Just take note though that I am not a fitness coach nor a nutritionist so you do not have to believe in everything I say. Just an ordinary person trying to maintain a better lifestyle here. This is pretty much a trend these days. Or is it just me? Oh my!



June 2016 vs. December 2016


Now let me just direct your attention to my old transformation photos. Old because I want to remind myself how I used to look and how far I reached my goal before comparing to new transformation photos that will hopefully come before the year ends. Mind you, I was weighing around 115 pounds in the before photo taken in June 2016 then latere dropped to 103 pounds after going back to the gym in October, doing mostly cardio workout like zumba and belly dancing plus some core and HIIT. I should've blogged about this thing long time ago, procrastinated a lot by leaving it in my draft but anyway it's on now.

Funny since I used to really think I was already doing fine with my old self until I pushed myself a bit and discovered I could do more. If you can check my old gym photo in this blog from long time ago I am sure you will understand what I mean. I am way bigger before though I tried different kinds of diet and been in and out of gyms.



July 2016 vs January 2017


For as long as I can remember, I started my fitness journey in 2008 when I got pregnant with my first baby and was told I needed to be on a diet in order to control gestational diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is in my family history on both sides. My father passed away of diabetes complications as well as his younger brother. A maternal uncle is currently battling kidney failure at a late stage due to diabetes complication so I am mostly likely to get GDM when pregnant. Anyhow, I met with a nutritionist and took a lesson on meal planning and calorie counting and the rest is history.

Fast-forward to present, losing weight is no longer my goal but to gain with some lean muscles. It's going to be quite a battle requiring a lot of weight lifting, discipline, dragging myself to the gym, rigorous meal planning and macro counting. Will be writing more about these topics next time. If you have tips or tricks in gaining weight the same way I want, please do share it in a comment below. Thanks heaps!