Aug 022016
 

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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!

Aug 012016
 

I definitely found the right “recipe” for overnight oats. Here it is:

1/4 cup steel cut oats

1/2 cup water

pinch of salt

1 Tablespoon flaxmeal

1/2 cup Plain Greek Yogurt

That’s the base I’ve been using and the last week or so I’ve been trying to experiment with other flavors.

The first experiment was with a 100 calorie black cherry yogurt. I used that instead of the plain Greek yogurt and added some frozen blueberries to it. I liked the flavor and chunks of the black cherry but I really don’t like flavored yogurts. I’ve been eating plain for so long now that the flavored ones taste either too sweet to me or they taste like fake sweeteners and chemicals. Yuck!

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The next try was a chocolate flavored Greek yogurt. I added some peanut butter and topped it with crushed nuts and chia seeds. This second try confirmed that I just prefer to use my good ol’ plain Greek yogurt (my favorite is the Costco brand). So I tried a few things and I’m going back to the basics.

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This time I used the base that is my old stand-by but substituted 1/4 cup of water with pineapple juice and then used 1/4 cup water. I added chopped pineapple and strawberries. Then I topped it with some shredded coconut, chia seeds and crushed nuts.

Yum! I liked the “tropical” flavor. 🙂

I tried using your basic rolled oats when I ran out of the steel cut and I am NOT a fan. The texture was all wrong. It was exactly how I imagined overnight oats to be before I tried them–mushy and like a sludge. For some reason the steel cut oats are just better to me. They are a bit chewy and not mushy at all and I just prefer it.

I’ve been back to work part time for a month and a half and on those days I do overnight oats for breakfast. It’s seriously been a time saver! It saves so much time in the morning when I’m trying to get out of the house. PLUS — I am full all morning long! This recipe is very satisfying and fulfilling and I don’t feel hungry for hours.

On those days, it’s very rushed and busy. My alarm goes off about 5:40 am. (I am so not a morning person. UGH.) Often time Logan has already woken me up, ready to eat. Depending on the time we often nurse in bed. (So glad we finally mastered the “side-lying” position. I just have to make sure I don’t fall back asleep as he eats.) Then he falls back asleep, I put him in his bassinet and get ready for work. Sometimes this isn’t the case and he stays asleep, so I need to pump instead. I’m pretty rushed trying to get everything done and packed for the day–even though I try and prep as much as I can the night before. So having these pre-made breakfasts ready to just take out of the fridge and put in a bowl has been a life saver! And they are delicious!

So after a few different experiments, I’m down to the same ol’ routine that works for me (the plain Greek yogurt with fresh fruit and steel cut oats) and I love it. I am definitely not sick of this breakfast yet. On days that I am home I have my old standby of eggs. I feel like I have a good balance right now. Once I’m back to work full time, this might change because I probably won’t want to have the oats every day.

What are your favorite FAST breakfast options?