Thursday, November 10, 2011

Sharing a Secret

This morning I am going to share a secret, ok....it is a tip really. A secret just sounded more enticing. I discovered this tip somewhere about a week ago & I had been dying to try it out. If I could remember where I found the info, I would certainly thank them. It is something that I noticed the immediate benefits of. I'll explain in a second.

While I have your undivided attention, I'd like to ask a few things. I am trying to rebuild my real estate career. In doing so, I have created a like page on Facebook since I am nearly at the 5,000 friend limit. Please take a second to either click here or to just "like" me on the handy dandy little box on the left side of this blog. Thank you so much in advance for doing this.

Also, if you enjoy my blogging, please become a follower of this blog. Right now, I feel as if nobody is reading what I am writing. My blogs have been pretty popular in the past but it seems as though healthy living is not as of much interest as I had hoped. So, boost a girl's ego a little if you don't mind. You can also have my updates sent directly to your email within seconds after I publish if you would like. This is how I keep up with most of my favorite bloggers.

Enough housekeeping. I am ready to share the big "secret". A close friend of mine told me about this amazing shredded chicken that she purchased at Cosco several months ago while out of town. How awesome!? Shredded chicken...all ready to go for soups, stews, tacos, fajitas, dinners, or anything else. The bad side? They have added tons of sodium, increased the price, & our Cosco here doesn't even carry it. She asked them to order it at least six months ago & it still hasn't happened.

Last week we grilled some yummy chicken on the grill. I marinated mine in a little extra virgin olive oil, garlic, & onion. I made BBQ for the kids.


Then, I tried out the "secret". I put a chicken breast into my kitchen aid mixer with the paddle attachment. Locked it in place & turned it on medium.


I walked away for about 30 seconds to grab the green beans & when I came back I had this:


Gorgeous, lovely, already shredded up chicken. No more taking the time to cut up chicken for all three of us... no work at all really. The best part, the kids ate more than they usually would. They totally cleaned their plates & both asked for seconds! I couldn't believe it. My kids LOVING chicken. Woo hoo! I have been enjoying the leftovers all week for lunch.

I imagine that you could use a food processor for this but I always worry about the blades & honestly, a food processor has more pieces to clean.

Since we eat chicken several times a week, this tip is going to be a huge time saver for me. Besides, anything that gets the kids to eat more of it....works for me!!!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Up for a REALLY Easy Challenge?

I am not much of a reader. I wish that I was, but I can never seem to sit still long enough. There is always something else that can be done & to be honest, taking care of or doing something for ME that doesn't benefit anyone else (in the immediate sense), is something that I have always had a hard time with. I have many books that I haven't been able to finish, even ones that I REALLY like. So when I decided to go Paleo a few weeks ago, I made a list of all of the great resources that I needed to check out. When I say check out, I mean check out....of the library. For free.

I am trying to make this a new requirement. If I read the whole book, I liked it, & I will use it in someway again...then MAYBE I will buy it. We are actually doing this with video games too. There have been several instances where my son has "liked" a game (in his head), we spent $60 & then within an hour he says, "I wish I didn't get this game. I should have gotten xxxxx". As a single mom on a super tight budget, this is not a sentence that I like to hear.

I found that the libraries available to me have a very small selection of Paleo books. I requested the three that they offer & was put on a wait list for all of them. This does not make an impatient & eager to learn person happy, but I was happy that they are desired enough to find out that 5 people were ahead of me for a particular book. Fortunately for me, the first book that I could get was one of the most popular, highly rated, and an easy read.


The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf. This book proved to be an excellent book of basics. I am proud to say that after one extension at the library, I read it in four weeks & will be adding it to my Christmas list. This is a book that I will want to read again & will recommend to anyone considering going Paleo. Robb (we are on a first name basis...even if he doesn't know it yet) basically challenges you to try this only for 30 days. Don't want to jump in feet first? No worries! He goes on step further & offers a plan.

1. Start off with just changing your breakfast for one week.
2. Then lunches for one week.
3. Next you will try breakfast & lunches for one week.
4. Lastly, you will incorporate dinner along with all other meals for one week.

Still don't think you can do it? Really? Let me ask you this.....(I expect to hear your answers.)

* Have you ever had bacon & eggs for breakfast?
* Have you ever eaten a salad with some chicken, shrimp, or grilled fish for lunch?
* Have you ever had some meat or seafood with veggies for dinner?

I am pretty sure that you answered yes to ALL of these questions. I know that you wouldn't dare lie to me. Right? So, you have already eaten "Paleo meals". Robb takes all of the guess work & opportunity for failure out of this for you. He offers meal plans, recipes, exercises, research, & so much more. He lets you start out at a snail's pace & still is confident enough that you will see results.

Based on what I have read over the past few weeks...ok, mainly over the weekend, I will be modifying a few things. I am going totally basic on this one. Following Robb's tips only. Since I have already been eating Paleo, I don't need the slower entry plan. I am already convinced. I have felt the differences. However, I will be switching up a few ingredients, exercises, & may even add an extra hour of sleep at night than I already have. This month I have gone from 6-7 hours/night to 7-8. What a change! I love it!

I realize that this month is Thanksgiving. To be completely honest, it is my FAVORITE food holiday. I am looking forward to eating all of my favorites & I probably won't modify them. Plus, I am a guest again this year so I do not have much control over the menu. Bummer. :)

With that being said.....I don't want to throw out a 30 day challenge & have you all click off the page without a second thought. How about a 7 day challenge? How about a 6 day challenge since this is already Sunday night or Monday (depending on when you see this) & you may need to go to the store? Switch one meal everyday for one week. That's it. Next week you can add another meal or just switch a different meal. Your choice. 

Sounds pretty easy, right? With over 81,000 meal choices you bet it is easy! I would love for you to join me so I can hear all about your journey & how amazing you start to feel. It will keep me going too. I mean, that is why I am blogging.....to help others. I don't need to do this for me. YOU feeling better, looking better & being healthier than you ever have is why I take the time to blog. But hey, maybe none of those things matter to you. Maybe you are 100% totally happy with who you are. 

Up for the challenge? Ready to go? Email me at: TeamLivingHealthy@gmail.com. I will send you a PDF of the Paleo Food Matrix that was put together by Robb Wolf. If you can't make a change that it is this easy...what else are you going to do? Honestly.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Sugar Hangover?

At 11pm last night, I wasn't sure that I would be making it in to work today. My underage minors had consumed one too many pieces of candy last night. By bed time they were both complaining of tummy aches & had a handy dandy little bowl next to them...just in case they would be seeing that candy for a second time.

Halloween is much like having a night on the town drinking. You get all dressed up, have a few drinks, have a few more drinks, think you are having the time of your life, & then.....POW. You don't even know what happened & you feel awful the next day.

I was wrong last night to think that only trick or treating for a short time (45 minutes to an hour) would limit the candy & therefore the consumption. They still received a ton of "treats". Way too many. The picture below is ONLY Brandon's candy. Allyson didn't sort hers so she wouldn't allow any photos.


I can't even begin to imagine how many calories are there & how many grams of sugar are sitting on that rug. Makes my belly hurt to even think about it. The kids went from not wanting to share a single piece, to offering up their entire stash by the end of the night.

As Brandon laid in bed last night, crying because he was worried that he was going to get me sick, he apologized for eating so much. (All in all I think he had about 7-10 pieces.) He looked absolutely terrible, like he had been beaten. He couldn't get comfortable, was laying in fetal position, & was going through a sugar crash.

When he told me that I could have all of the candy that he had left, I reminded him that I am not eating sugar anymore. I reminded him of how great I have felt since I cut it out. I have been especially proud of him the last few weeks because he has accepted my new lifestyle the best. He eats the majority of what I eat & he is happy to do it. I am setting a good example for him & that means more to me than anything. Ally is SLOWLY making better choices & I am extremely proud of her as well. She tends to think that she can eat whatever she wants & because she is "skinny", it is okay. Health is not important to her. That is my job.

Last night was an evening of indulgence. One that kids should get to experience. Now while they remember how awful they felt, I need to get them right back on the track of healthy eating. I'll let them keep some of that candy, but there will be reasonable limits. They certainly won't be eating 7-10 pieces each day. Within a few days they won't even want most of it. They will continue to offer it to me & I will continue to politely turn them down. (Full disclosure - I had one mini Almond Joy & one Reese Cup. It wasn't worth it. I ate them completely out of boredom & because I was holding the bag of candy. I regret it. It won't derail me. It won't happen again.)

Our kids see what we do & they imitate it. They want to be us. If we are excited about healthy eating they will be too. If we care about fitness & being active, they will too. If we like to cook, they will want to help us. You have the opportunity to make a change in your family, your children's family, & their children's family. So make a change today! Hide some of the candy, limit their consumption, but at the very least....don't eat it yourself. If you are consistent, they will follow. Baby steps. Small changes will over time show BIG results.