I am in an eating rut. With my commitment to Orange Theory, I am pretty good with my exercise — okay, so I could make improvements here, as well. Still, a menu makeover was the item needing immediate attention.
And with us getting older and my occasional mood swings, I thought it’s time to revamp. Again, we are pretty good with our food choices, but convenience and sweets started sneaking in a lot more. I am just maintaining my weight and I want to look good in my 50s so let’s start now.
Just starting this revampification (my word) has definitely improved my mood.
I have done a lot of the fad diets and they work, but you put the weight right back on when you are finished. I don’t want to diet. It needs to be a life style change. I like my wine. I like my chocolate. And we’re locked in to grilling Bob’s Burgers at least once a month.
(He: And you can’t tear me away from beer and cheese!)
Still, I wanted to eat better. To do that, I knew keeping track of what I was eating was key. The first thing I did was read Brent’s friend’s blog “Ice Cream & French Fries” for some inspiration. (Don’t let the name fool you. It cracks me up because she’s in awesome shape. She eats well, but does not deny herself treats. Also don’t be fooled — literally — because once you get to the blog it’s now titled Happy Healthy Home.)
Tiara has some wonderful ideas and recipes. (Thank you, Tiara, for getting me excited again.) Plus, if I want Brent to eat better it’s up to me. He eats whatever is put in front of him! So … better if it were healthy.
(He: That ain’t no lie. For just how bad, refer to Episode 5 of The Hump!)
Keeping Track of Our Menu Makeover
To keep track, we downloaded and began using My Fitness Pal. You can not only enter your meals, but you also can keep track of exercise and your daily steps. The more you move and exercise, the app automatically adjusts the amount you can eat that day (bonus: you get to eat more).
When reading Tiara’s blog, I learned about Macros (not macaroons people). Counting macros basically means you are watching your precentage of carbs, fat, and protein and keeping them in the right proportion.
Well, when I figured mine out, I determined I was to eat 50% carbohydrates, 30% fat, and 20% protein. Plugging in the meals really makes you aware of what you’re eating. Those precious moments of entering the food gives you time to decide (I enter the food before I actually consume it) … do I really want to put this into my body?
My Fitness Pal is easy to use. And best of all, it’s free. If you want more functionality, the app does offer a premium version. I might try it. We’ll see how I do with the basic functionality first.
He: I’m using it, as well. Not too bad. Though I wish God had designed all produce with bar codes.
Grocery Shopping When You Do a Menu Makeover
I’ll admit. Grocery shopping for this menu makeover concerned me. We’ve done diets in the past where I was running all over town trying to find some ingredient that requires some exotic Indian spices. I struggle not only with the quality but the economy of healthy food, particularly produce. This wasn’t too bad.
And I’m going to do my green smoothies again for breakfast. Several years ago (on a different kick), I downloaded the Green Smoothie Bible to my Kindle app.
I like the smoothie recipes in the Green Smoothie Bible for the menu makeover because they’re clean and fresh. And I prefer the ones that are not too complicated. The book is also great because it categorizes the smoothies by your goal or goals. You can find smoothies for goals like facilitating weight loss, enhancing your mood and helping your sleep.
I then looked to see what Tiara eats for lunch. I don’t know about you but salads bore me! She had some great alternatives. Bowls of some variety or another, chicken salad on a pita, protein packed pasta and more.
A Menu Makeover Recipe Example
I made a tuna melt recipe:
- Albacore tuna
- Mayo (1-2tbsp)
- A handful of spinach
- A slice of bread … (we used Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Bread)
- … and it did not skimp on the cheese (Still. A single slice people). We used a muenster from Costco.
With the sandwich, we split an apple and used PB2, a powdered peanut butter.
Brent kind of looked at the PB2, like what? It tasted SO good. And it’s 1/4 the calories of regular peanut butter. And Brent? He liked it too! But again, we’ve already established that he’ll eat whatever is put in front of him.
And Any Menu Makeover “Worth Its Salt” Still Needs Dessert
I also tried JoJo’s dark chocolate bark with dried cranberries and raw almonds. I love these! Again thank you, Tiara, for mentioning these amazing bars. You can eat an entire bar. And … trust me … I’m all about dessert.
Tip: Use Tiara’s code TIARA10 for 10% off your order.
The Results … So Far …
I am about a week and a half in and already feel better. I have more energy and feel less bloated. Plus, it can be fun to change things up.
In the last few days, we’ve also tried Tiara’s Easy Summer Meal. The whole family loved this one.
To roll that dinner over to the next night, I bought extra and we had opened faced sandwiches with the left over pork, golden delicious apples and whole wheat muffins.
Again, my main goal with doing this is to be more tone and just feel better. I also hope it helps with the premenopausal mood swings. And I’m sure Brent hopes that, too.
He: No comment here. This is one of those ‘No-win situations’!
As we continue through our Menu Makeover, we’ll keep you updated on our progress. In the meantime, if you have recipe ideas or other menu tips, definitely leave us a comment. 👇