Easy meals

Keto, Low Carb & Quarantine

I want to start by saying that Keto is not for everyone. It’s a diet that takes a LOT of planning. It takes a LOT of tracking. You have to be on top of things or you are not doing the keto diet.

I was doing keto and basically maintaining at this point, not losing, which was frustrating in a lot of ways.

Then this covid-19 thing happened and things changed. Suddenly, the grocery store felt like a battle ground. You had to wear a mask, wipe everything down, try to avoid touching things as much as you can, avoid people…we were working from home and I was only going to the grocery store about every 9-12 days instead of weekly (or twice a week).

So my buying habits had to change. We were pretty stocked up on proteins because of Costco (in our freezer we have: frozen chicken thighs, burger patties, pork chops, salmon, shrimp, scallops, bratwursts). I had frozen veggies (cauliflower rice, green beans, cauliflower mash, etc). But fresh produce does not last long so I had to be creative.

For awhile there eggs were hard to find in my grocery store. We were never OUT of them but had to ration (now stores have them fully stocked).

So for breakfasts I rotate: one day I do my plain greek yogurt with blueberries (frozen, from Costco, defrosted) with almonds, chia seeds and keto granola. Another day I will do keto toast with cream cheese or avocado and two fried or scrambled eggs. Sometimes Michael will make a hash (sauteed sweet potatoes topped with smoked salmon, arugula and fried eggs). Logan has frozen waffles, eggs, toast with applesauce or fruit or oatmeal. He’s also on a rotation. πŸ™‚

Dinners are largely the same when we were doing keto but once a week we are doing a pasta or rice dish to help stretch the pantry items and make it so I don’t need to go to the grocery store as often. One night I wanted an easy dinner and made rice, beans, avocado, salsa, with sour cream and jalapenos. Basically a vegetarian bowl. Another night we had pasta with cajun shrimp.

It’s definitely harder to stick to a keto or low carb diet during the quarantine because we can’t have fresh items as often. And we have to be creative with meals sometimes. I do see a lot of keto people sticking to it, and I commend them.

So far in the 6 or so weeks that I’ve been home I’ve been working out 5 days a week still and I gained 2-3 pounds. I guess from eating carbs. There are days here and there where I am a little “snacky” and eat junk (like crackers or chips) but I try not to buy junk food at all to not have the temptation in the house!

I have started up doing sourdough bread again.

Which is fun. It’s something to do as a family, too. Logan helped!

And Michael even tried his hand at doing his very own loaf!

It’s been a struggle with the weight and exercise thing (more mentally than anything). But right now is not the time to focus on that–now is the time to give ourselves grace and be patient with ourselves while the world is a scary place.

QUESTION: How has your diet/exercise mentality changed during the covid-19 pandemic?

Keto Meals Week 1

Here is the first week in meals. Everything I ate (100%):

Day One

Breakfast – Cheese omelet with sausage on the side. Unsweetened iced tea. Coffee with nutpod creamer.

LunchΒ  – SkinnyTaste’s Picadillo on salad with avocado

Snacks – Walnuts, Olives stuffed with jalapenos, Cheese

Dinner – Turkey Burger with Smoked Gouda Cheese, Bacon, Mayo. I made a cucumber salad with avocado and Newman’s Own Lite Italian Dressing (low carb and no sugar! Yay!) and a glass of red wine.

How I felt & how I did- Felt good! Wasn’t hungry! Like not at all! Didn’t feel tired or run down, either. I even worked out. My macros were great! I was pretty close on all the macros, not perfect, but that’s ok. The important part was I got to 20 net carbs. Yay me!

Day Two

Breakfast – 2 scrambled eggs (with heavy cream), with sausage and red peppers topped with cheese and sour cream and hot sauce. Coffee with heavy cream and nutpod creamer. Unsweetened iced tea.

Lunch – Antipasto Salad. Green salad with Italian dressing. Salami, prosciutto, fresh mozzarella, cucumber, Greek peperoncinos and olives.

Dinner – This was the first challenge–going out to a restaurant. I could have changed our start date so that we began the Keto diet after our dinner plans with friends, but I wanted to be able to make this work even going out. We met our friends at Hopworks (basically a beer and pizza place but it’s kid friendly). I got a Cobb Salad (salad with blue cheese dressing, blue cheese crumbles, tomatoes, bacon, avocado, hard boiled egg). It came with a breadstick, which I did not eat but wanted to!

I did have a glass of wine but just one.

Overall, my second day was good. I was MUCH closer to my macro goals (67% out of 70% of fat, 23% out of 25% on protein) but today I was at 27 net carbs for the day, so over. Looking over my day I discovered that my highest carb count was the avocado–ironically–but that’s ok because it’s the good carbs. (I mean HOW is the avocado higher in carbs than my WINE?!?!)

But I worked out today, so maybe the few extra carbs were a good thing?

Day Three

Breakfast – Omelet with cheese and bacon and hot sauce. Unsweetened iced tea and coffee with heavy cream and Stevia. Still not quite the same as my coffee creamer. WAHHHHH!!!! πŸ™

Lunch – I got home from swimming feeling the first effects of the coming Keto-flu (I think). I was weak and shaky and felt like my muscles didn’t work. I had steamed broccoli with Goddess Dressing and some pork rinds (which are kinda weird but good if you are craving chips). Then I had a “wrap”–two slices of turkey and salami and a slice of prosciutto wrapped around a hunk of fresh mozzarella with mayo and mustard.

Snacks – Today I had a mug of bone broth. It was good! Warm and filling. I also had a piece of cheese and, some nuts and some olives.

Dinner – Michael made pastrami on the traeger grill! It was a week long process, too! But it was cool to have homemade pastrami for dinner and we have a ton for lunches for the week. Dinner was pastrami in a low carb wrap with mayo and lettuce. It was really good!

Day Four

Breakfast – Scrambled eggs (with heavy cream) with red peppers and sausage topped with some shredded cheese. Unsweetened iced tea. I had coffee with heavy cream and Stevia when I got to work.

Lunch – Pastrami in a low carb wrap! These wraps are really great! Not only are they actually tasty but they are low in calories and low in carbs. They are only 5 net carbs. So I made a wrap with mayo, mustard, pastrami, some lettuce and cheese. Bone broth.

Snacks – I made ranch dip from scratch (Hidden Valley packet with Tillamook full fat sour cream) and had raw broccoli and cucumber. Then later I had mixed salted nuts and a piece of cheese.

Dinner – Zoodles with pesto and meatballs. Some mozzarella on the side.

Day Five

Breakfast – Cheese omelet with hot sauce. Unsweetened iced tea. Coffee with heavy cream and stevia.

Lunch – Pastrami (no wrap), avocado, mozzarella, Newman’s Own Lite Italian dressing.

Snacks – Mixed salted nuts (only 1 ounce this time), cheese in the morning. In the afternoon I had homemade ranch dip with cucumbers and broccoli.

Dinner – Pork chop with herbed butter sauce and shaved brussels sprouts.

My Take Away From Week One

  • It is actually a lot harder to get fat in your diet than you think.
  • I’m going to miss my Kombucha. πŸ™
  • I have a lot more thoughts and working on a post for next week!