Category Archives: portion sizes

Light Carb Snacks and Lunches

The hard part of any diet is being creative. It’s so easy to get into a rut and eat the same thing for days and days…Before you know it, you’re completely burned out on eating salads every day and all you want is a big burrito or slice of pizza!

When I decided to try limiting my carb intake, I struggled to find quick and easy lunches I could take to work. When I’m home it’s easy to figure out something but I needed stuff that was easily packed ahead of time.

I bought some containers that have compartments to make it easier to transport several different things without a big mess. I love this and this! So far they work great! No leaks, no mess. The dual compartment ones I have are fabulous. In one side I put some roasted veggies, the other side hummus or tuna salad.

So here are a few of my lunches and snacks I’ve been enjoying lately:

Lunches

Lunch #1

I do these “rollup” things. I take some sliced deli meat (it varies, ham, roast beef, turkey or pastrami, and sometimes I mix and match them together) with a slice of cheese and a little mustard and roll it up. I usually pack 2 for lunch. Sometimes I have pickles and olives with it.

Then I had some roasted veggies on the side. I love roasted veggies! And they are surprisingly filling. I usually do broccoli, onion, Brussels Sprouts, and carrots. (Sometimes I’ll add some sweet potatoes or butternut squash but I’m trying not do that right now.)

 

Lunch #2

I made some tuna salad. I took a can of tuna, added some mayo and mustard, diced carrots, diced onion, diced pickles and some seasoning. Instead of crackers I took cucumber slices. One day I had some cheddar slices with it and another day I had string cheese.

Lunch #3

I got some chile lime chicken burgers from Trader Joe’s that are super low in carbs and calories. I have a patty with cheese and some roasted veggies.

I also got butternut squash to add to my roasted veggies.

Also, some riced cauliflower and turkey meatballs. Yum! (Although the above photo is more for dinner than lunch.)

Lunch #4

Big salad with lettuce, carrots, avocado, Chipotle dressing and the pre-cooked chicken fajita strips (bought on a whim because they were marked down and they were actually pretty good!).

 

Lunch #5

Kind of of a hodge-podge of things. A hardboiled egg, some chopped ham, and roasted veggies.

Snacks

Snack #1

Plain Greek Yogurt with sliced strawberries.

Snack #2

Sliced apple with string cheese.

Snack #3

Pickles, black olives, jalapeno stuffed olives and some pistachios.

Snack #4

Cheese, Salami, olives.

Snack #5

I got a package of the Sargento Balanced Breaks–cheese, nuts and dried fruit. I could have easily made my own, but they were on sale so I picked up a package. They are a little higher in carbs than I’m looking for (12grams) but they are good for workout days.

I also had some celery and peanut butter that day.

Thoughts

I’ve gotten some pretty good ideas for more lunches and snacks that I’m going to try in the coming weeks. I think it’s important to switch things up each week so it doesn’t get monotonous and boring. When I was trying to lose 100 pounds 10 years ago I ate the same damn lunch every single day. Every day. No deviation–a turkey and cheese sandwich on low calorie bread with a serving of wheat thins. Man was I sick of that!!!

So I will do another post in a few weeks with other ideas I’ve tried!

QUESTION: What are your favorite snacks and lunches right now?

Surprise Progress

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That’s me right now. 🙂 Happy dance!

A few weeks ago I decided to suck it up and step on the scale. I needed to see where I was at since I was going to try and really get serious about losing the baby weight. I was surprised to see that I had lost a few pounds and it was a nice surprise and a nice motivator!

At the time I was eating around 1800 calories as a base and if I worked out and burned another 400 calories, I was eating most of those calories back. It really did depend on the day and the baby. If Logan was going through some kind of growth spurt and was cluster feeding or I just felt hungrier than normal, I was listening to my body and eating more.

When I saw that I was losing a little bit of weight, I decided it was time to go down to 1700 calories as a base. It’s only a 100 calorie difference but I thought it was time. I hadn’t been feeling ravenous lately so I figured it was a good time to do it.

My only concern was that reducing my calories too much might effect my milk supply. I didn’t want that to happen, hence the 100 calorie difference. Losing weight would be nice, but not at that cost. In the last two or so weeks since I reduced my base to 1700 I have noticed a little bit of a shift in my supply. I’m hoping it’s not too significant. I’m keeping a very watchful eye on it and if it does reduce too much I might have to back off on trying to lose the weight right now.

Well last week I got on the scale and was happily surprised to see another loss! This time I was down about 1.5 pounds! So for the month of July (and part of June) I lost about 4.5 pounds! That’s a lot!

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When I got pregnant I was 157 pounds. My goal is to get back to 150 (my original goal weight) so that’s about 20 pounds to go. 14 pounds if I just want to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight.

Seeing the 4.5 pound loss this summer was really encouraging. I was honestly feeling pretty discouraged because I figured I wouldn’t lose the pregnancy weight until I stopped breastfeeding, but something is finally clicking and I’m starting to see some results.

4 Months Post-partum

4 Months Post-partum

Another motivator is that some of the summer clothes I bought in May (in the bigger size) are a little looser now.

What have I been doing?

  • I’m tracking my calories every day.
  • 1700 calories is the daily base + some of the gym calories I burn.
  • I’m trying to make better choices about WHAT I eat.
  • I’m paying attention to portions.
  • I’m trying not to drink my calories too much. Meaning, no more orange juice with breakfast, trying not to drink diet soda, trying to drink more water, trying to keep the glasses of wine or beer to just Friday and Saturday nights, etc. All those extra beverage calories are not necessary and they add up fast.
  • I’m working out consistently–swimming, walking, weight lifting, cardio machines at the gym. I’m working out 5 days a week in some form (some days it’s just a walk, and that’s ok).

Here is an example of one day:

Breakfast – 2 scrambled eggs, hash-brown patty, unsweetened iced tea, iced coffee. Calories: 407

Lunch – Grilled ham and cheese sandwich with a nectarine. Calories: 630

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Probably not the healthiest lunch but I’d been craving a grilled cheese sandwich for weeks and I burned a ton of calories on my walk with Logan.

Exercise – Walk. Calories burned: 607

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Snack – Trader Joe’s Chipotle Bean Dip with some raw veggies. Calories: Around 150

Dinner – Basmati Rice with a Vegetarian Indian dish on top and spinach salad. Calories: 500

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Dessert – Some pieces of chocolate and a glass of milk. Calories: 200.

Total for the day was just under 1900 calories (so 1700+ eating back some of the 607 calories I burned on our long walk). I did have some “liquid calories” (the coffee and a glass of milk) but I still had a bunch of calories leftover for the day.

Most of the time dinners are what Michael and I usually have–a protein and a vegetable. Like steak + sautéed sweet potatoes and onions + steamed broccoli. That’s a pretty good example of what we eat for dinners. Twice a week for breakfast I’m doing the overnight oats, the other days it’s usually eggs and an English Muffin or hash-brown patties (from Trader Joe’s–only 130 calories and so tasty!).

Here is another example of a gym day:

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That was weight lifting and the elliptical. As far as fitness goes I’ve got it pretty dialed in. I’m mostly back to what I was doing before I was too pregnant to do things! Being able to physical do the stuff I used to do has also helped with my motivation.

So onward and downward! I hope the scale keeps moving!