Cabbage Wraps & Called Out

I was playing around the other day in a kickball tourney when I got a phone call from a friend. Ben was a guy that I worked out with back in Lafayette. He’s pretty much the penguin’s tuxedo. So we got to talking about how we lost our edge to be healthy. Where as neither of us had actually really falling off the deep end of complete apathy for our health, we were on our way. So there was only one thing to do about it, hold each other accountable. Once upon a time, here, I wrote a little piece about having a team. Ben is on that team. He is a leader on that team! So Ben, this post is for you.

cabbage wraps

Here in Baton Rouge, I have met the least healthy person I know. Coincidentally his name is Ben. He is amazing, but has a bigger sweet tooth than I and never has to work out to stay in his jeans. He does, however, have a green thumb. His garden has produced more Kale and Cabbage this winter than we know what to do with. We have made kale chips, eaten lots of cabbage (which side effect to it’s deliciousness is a mean case of the toots. I call it “revenge of the cabbage.”), and juiced. Juiced a lot (well I juiced a lot of Kale, not we). So in the last winter harvest before planting the next round of awesome produce, had to be used and I wanted something different.

Last HarvestWhat you are looking at is the last harvest. This took up half the picnic table.

I did a little research and digging through my favorite cookbooks and of course my pinterest feed till I finally settled on Cabbage Wraps as I have been having a strong envie for some PF Changs’ wraps. …and so it was. I altered a recipe from Bill Phillips book, Eat for Life. His were Lettuce Wraps. I figured, “We have all this cabbage…who needs lettuce?”

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Not only are these delicious, but they are full of protien. My only hold up is the amount of sodium. I couldn’t find a Hoisin sauce that was low in sodium round these parts, but I will be on a mission. The final break down for the entire recipes is as follows:

This recipe serves 4. Each serving 274 calories, 36g carbs, 2g of fat, 32g protein, 897g sodium, 23g sugar.

You can find the recipe here. Save, print, cook, enjoy.

The Fat Chick

Look, the lack of posts around this joint are pretty indicative of my work-outs and the plethora of cokes going into my belly. One might say I fell off the wagon. I didn’t mean to. I could give you a million reasons (i.e. excuse) why this happened but the sad truth is, I forgot why I wanted to quit drinking cokes, stop eating dessert with every meal, work out, etc. I lost my connection with the honor that my body deserved. This all became quite clear in the last 48 hours.

I looked in the mirror the other night and had on a tank top. I hated the way it hugged my pooch. I turned to the side and hated the dimples in my thigh. I got really close to the mirror and hated the bags under my eyes. I hated the way my arms sat against my body. I hated everything that I saw in that mirror except my hair. I didn’t know the girl looking back at me. She was tired and lost. I had never despised what I was looking at so much. The only saving grace was when the boyfriend, God bless his soul, who knew none of the thoughts in my head, came up and kissed the back of my head and whispered, “Damn Whit, you are hot.” I will tell you it took everything I had not to cry in that very moment, but I held it together and just gave him a hug.

I wondered if he knew what was going through my head. Then I reminded myself who I was dating. Of course he didn’t. He just calls it like he sees it, and he certainly isn’t one to sugar coat or stroke an ego. I wanted so badly to see what he saw, and I was so angry I didn’t cause not even a month before, I was starting to see the “hot chick” in there. Then last night happened.

I work part-time at a bar. Hey, holiday season is rough y’all. A gentlemen who had come in a couple of times came and sat down. We were chit chatting and trading first kiss stories. Specifically, “last first kiss stories.” It was pleasant. We went back and forth about his wife and my boyfriend. All was quite pleasant. I was sitting down chatting with my boyfriend feller when my regular came and said, I need a picture to send to my friend. I never looked up, and just said no. As the night progressed and the boyfriend left, I was sitting and chatting with my regular.

He said, “The picture I took of you was terrible.”

“What?” I was quite confused.

“Look.” As he showed me the picture he made on fatal mistake. He went into the text convo instead of the picture itself. The picture where as it wasn’t my best, it was not the worst, but the comment that was before it in the text thread broke my heart. “send me a pic of the fat chick.”

I felt every part of my soul cringe. I was the fat chick. Do I say something? No cause I would start crying if I did. You can not cry at a bar, especially if you are working. I just ignored it. I didn’t know what to say. How could I be angry, I looked in the mirror not even 24 hours prior and thought the same thing, “Look at that fat chick staring back at me.” I was so angry too, and not at him, but at me. I believed him. I believed that I was nothing more than a fat chick. I had for the past week.

When did I start calling myself fat again? I hate that word. It makes me cringe. Furthermore, when will we, myself included, stop defining ourselves and others by their physical appearance? When did we become so callous? When did we start being so hard on ourselves and each other?

I guess if I could do it all over, I would say, “Thank you for reminding me what I lost. I lost sight of my good, tangible and intangible. Thank you for waking me up. Thank you for reminding me that I may never be able to change you, but I can change me. I can change how I honor myself. I can change my health. I can change my outlook, but you young sir, you I can not. I am sorry that in our conversations I, still, was nothing more than “the fat chick.”

Here’s to being the fat chick, who can bounce a quarter of her ass.

W

Crawfish Pot Stickers

Today was a clean out the fridge kind of morning. I had some wraps left over from Shrimp Won-Tons, some spinach, and crawfish tails. So knowing that I always have some trinity chopped and in the freezer, I went to work crEATing. This was the taste-ful outcome.

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I steamed my pot-stickers in a quart pot with a bit of grape-seed oil on the bottom and about 2 tablespoons of water. It came out delish. The most unhealthy thing about it is the dash of remoulade sauce, but hey, that is very much worth it.

Shrimp Wontons

SWFinishedThis weekend I was making the trip back to Slidell, my hometown. I stopped at Whole Foods in Baton Rouge (which is a whole other story, but as always was an adventure in surviving) picking up some goodies. When I got to the check out line there were so many impulse things to pick from. I chose an Eating Well magazine. I had no idea how awesome this decision would be.

As I flipped through, I was most excited about the lack of advertisements. There were a handful, but not all-consuming. The thing was chalked full of recipes, and not crazy ones either. Super simple recipes. One section caught my eye, the “Frozen Assets” section. This pad boy was full of recipes meant to freeze and cook for later. I was thrilled. I decided that my mom and I would have the Shrimp Dumpling recipe the next day. Then the house exploded in excitement  as the confetti fell at the anticipation of Shrimp Dumplings. Okay maybe that didn’t happen, but I was excited.

I followed the recipe with a few minor adjustments. I used only one pound of shrimp and added chopped spinach. I forgot the cornstarch, which I am excited about trying as I was having some problems with these little suckers, and I didn’t put the white pepper, only cause my mom doesn’t like spicy. I decided I would pair my won-tons (what Eating Well cause dumplings) with a simple fried rice with the dish and some roasted green beans, and serve them on a bed of spinach with a drizzle and i do mean a drizzle of sweet and sour sauce.

I had some troubles getting the golden crisp outside that the magazine showed. I served the best looking ones but hey, they all tasted delicious. I was super excited about this recipe. My fried rice came out simple and the roasted green beans were some of my favorite, news flash, it’s because of the honey I drizzled prior to roasting with the cracked red pepper. #offthechain

SWFoldingFolding was not quite the zen process I was hoping for. I also wanted to make cute little folds…I learned very quickly to stop trying to be fancy. A little jar of water to dip my fingers in was a must. Also get a huge cookie sheet that you can lay flat in your freezer to freeze these bad boys. I recommend parchment paper so they don’t stick after freezing.  I folded about 45 of them. The recipe yields 48, so I was pretty darn close.

veggiesThese were my chopped veggies, minus the spinach, which was a last-minute decision. I realized with this dish that it would be a great sweep the kitchen dish. Got some cabbage you need to use or any other veggies that need to be sliced, this is a great way to mix them in a dish, and sneak them into  the non veggie eaters. My mom got spinach and cabbage and green beans snuck into her belly. (insert evil laugh here).

The biggest lesson to be learned with this dish, have fun with the process. Don’t expect it to look like a picture and won-tons/dumplings/pot-stickers still taste yummy even if they don’t look perfect! Eat up lil’ chickens, eat up!

Recipes to download:

Eating Well’s Shrimp Dumplings (aka what I call Won-Tons) 

Whit’s Simple Fried Rice

Honey Ginger Roasted Green Beans

Keep bouncing quarters and EatGood! -W

 

true + kind = awesome

This will be the last I speak about things. It is time to put the superman underoos to bed. I believe they are the only underoos to ever be retired.

I was overwhelmed by the amount of kind words I received last week. So with that, I want to share with you a few lessons and letters this week has given me.

The messages of support I received were unbelievable. Seriously touched my heart. I learned that no matter what you level of self confidence, good friends are amazing,  words of encouragement will always be appreciated, and none of us are bulletproof. My favorite words in particular were these:

You are Amaze Balls! From the first time I ever had a chance to workout with you, I knew we would be great friends. You bring a vigorous attitude to the gym and the wods. You lighten up the room with your smile and your cheer. You may express dislike or disgust with certain workouts but you never back down-that inspires me! You are brilliant. You art is beautiful, your words are meaningful and worthy. You ARE BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!
I know people are cruel. I know it hurt you. I couldn’t help but cry a bit too after hearing about the silly comments made at your expense. Sorry, I’m just super sappy and sensitive. But, one thing I am sure of is that you will not let this bring you down. This minor obstacle will be an opportunity and you will use it to your advantage, not only for yourself but for all those that you help and inspire. Although you are not geographically close to us anymore, I think you are right where you need to be. Ask yourself this, how many clients in your gym have experienced some form of criticism in their life? They may have buried it deep or they may be using it as fuel. You now have the opportunity to be one step closer to making their lives a lot better.
I want you to know, in my eyes, you wear the gorilla suit. The way you attack your shortcomings-whether they be in the gym or in life. You were always trying to have better times than Forrest but I was shooting for having better times than you. You are AWESOME!!!!!!!!”
Do with this what you want. Take from it what you want. I am pretty confident that I am not the only one that feels this way about you.
I share this, because it applies to all of us in one way or another. We all have the opportunity to inspire someone. My mom is a teacher. She always says if she can inspire one person she has done her job. Anyone that knows her knows it is far more than one. This is the thing, don’t let your opportunity pass to inspire someone. Be constructive and kind with your words, only good things will happen then.
When words are both true and kind they can change the world.  -Buddha
Secondly, I found this. I think it is the most important thing in the world to remember!
self esteem
The most important in my eyes is to know yourself and take care of that person. With that, YOU can change the world.
In the words of my favorite movie character, Bobby Long, “Be kind to one another, your youth is fleeting.”
Happy Quarter Bouncing … W

I saw me and laughed

It’s taken me a couple of days to write this. It seemed trivial. It seemed as if I was over reacting. Maybe I was/am, but I saw a picture and laughed at how much fun I had that day. In a matter of 30 minutes the same picture makes me cringe, because of others comments.

This is the picture that made me laugh:

superman

This is one of the comments that made me cry:

wwAmong other comments where, “Who is that dude in the background?”  I am not a dude, so that hurt. “Who is that large woman with superman underpants on?” Large woman? Thanks peeps. There were a handful more, some posting pictures of my husband, which was pretty bad as well. (disclaimer: I am not married, it was cartoon drawings of men in super hero outfits, 10 sizes too small.)

Now, I realize this could have been worse. I do. I also realize that I can’t let the words of people hiding behind anonymity and a computer screen get to me, but this is the thing.

I am 31 years old. I have known I needed to lose weight for about a decade now. For two reasons I needed to:
1. To look better.
2. Most importantly, because my health is held in the hands of how much extra weight I carry around.

I don’t now, and didn’t then need anyone to tell me this. I saw it. I saw myself in the mirror. I saw the number on the scale. I knew the panting that happened when I walked up stairs. I was carrying extra pounds. I was not an idiot.

Does one for one second think that I felt good about it? If you think I did, let me enlighten you. I hated it, HATED it.

One might think that deciding to lose weight is the easiest part. It wasn’t. It was difficult and emotional. I was deciding that me losing weight was not admitting that everyone who told me to “hold my stomach in” or told me I was getting fat was right. I had to decide that I wasn’t somehow giving them some sort of sweet satisfaction to be able to say, “I told you so,” later on. I had to get to a point that the challenges of getting healthy and SUBSEQUENTLY, skinnier were far easier than the risks of getting larger. It took me a decade, probably more to get there. So to finally get there and suddenly have comments made that stab at your juggernaut. Well, it sucks.

Now, I realize, these comments may seem funny, I suppose if they are not about you, they are. If they are not about a person that has been struggling to get healthier and smaller for herself for more than a decade… They could be. In a nutshell, if they are about a robot with no emotions, then yes they are.

My first thought in all this: No wonder our kids are killing themselves over comments on social media. This was mild and made me, a 31 year old woman, who despite her distorted view of her own physical appearance, has a pretty decent confidence level. No wonder kids and adults don’t come and talk to us about depression, bi-polar, or any other issue below the surface. Look at we do to those who’s “issues” are on the surface. We are mean and highly critical.

We have to start empowering each other to see each other as our best self, not point out “faults” to a point that those are the things that define us.

Happy Quarter Bouncing…W

better than Spanx

Today is my day dedicated all to my abs, so… Let’s talk about Spanx. Look, I am not going to kid myself. It is much easier to honor your body for what it does, rather than how it looks when it looks amazing. Spanx help out in this. It is hard to get past that emotional idea that our bellies should be flat and our butts should be tight. Thus the multi-million dollar companies of fat displacement clothing was invented. Does that really honor what your body can do? Not to mention, when that little dress comes off, Spanx are not the sexiest things.

Here are my top reasons and solutions for aiming for the flat belly and strong core (aiming for cause it is not quite there yet):

  • Bloating is not cool and most of the time caused by the pesky little guy called gas. If Spanx are unsexy when the dress drops, toots are right up their with it. Drink water! Drink at least half your body weight in water. I promise, it will help with the bloat.
  • Strong core is the best simplest and usually the only solution needed for back pain. Seriously, that spine of yours has to support a lot, you need the muscles to support it. Your core muscles are the first place to start.
  • Better athletic performance. Let me tell you, I got infinitely better with my kickball when my belly started shrinking and I started working my core. Who doesn’t want to perform better. Seriously, even non-athletes want to be able to get up the stairs quicker without the, “OMG I will never catch my breath face.”
  • Balance. Raise your hand if you are a klutz. (I am raising both mine.) It is amazing to me that I haven’t broken many a bones. I trip and fall over my own two feet. Most of the time it is just because I tipped over for no apparent reason. Strong core creates better balance. This may be the only reason I need to work that belly.

So how can you build core strength? Yoga and Pilates are great for this. There are countless activities: Kickboxing, cycling, or swimming to name a few. There are many gyms that offer strength training programs. All of this makes for a tight belly and strong core. Do not be afraid of weights. Cardio may change your size, but strength training will improve your shape and your core strength. Plus it will get you ready to bounce a quarter off that belly in no time!

Happy Quarter Bouncing!

Today’s Work-Out:
20 minutes eliptical
20 minutes bike
50 supermans

100 – 2 count mountain climbers

30 second planks (both sides and traditional)

100 – 2 count bicycle

Losing It : Jenni “Jennikins” Gomila

I don’t even know how to introduce this girl. She is the best friend I have ever had. She judges me constantly (in a good way), and never walks when I am a crazy loon, which is pretty regularly. She and I only recently learned that we have something in common, a love of Harvey Spector/Lawson Pines. I have fallen in friend love with her to the moon and back. This is us:

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It’s a long time ago, but it is still one of my favorite pictures of us. Needless to say, this is before a before picture. This is too:

before 2

This is her and her husband, Billy Gomila (one of my favorite husbands and LSU fans)  a month ago:

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This is Jenni’s Story:

What is your goal?

My goal was to lose 102 lbs to go from 252 lbs (heaviest I’ve ever been) to 150 lbs.  I would like to maintain between 150-160 lbs for the rest of my life.

Why is it important to you?

I started this journey because my husband and I were trying to conceive and I was told that I was so unhealthy, in addition to other health problems that I more than likely wouldn’t conceive naturally and if I were able to actually get pregnant, I was at a high risk of miscarriage.  Obviously not something you want to hear when people all around you are getting pregnant, either easily or unexpectedly and it was very frustrating for us as a young couple to be doing everything seemingly right, so I looked into this weight loss plan.

Is this the first time you set this goal?

Yes.  I’ve always joked that I would like to be a size 10 and weigh 150, like my drivers license says, but I don’t know that I’ve actually had the heart to do what it takes to get it done.

What have your struggles been in the past?

I love food.  I love to socialize. I love to drink.  We live in an area where the culture is to have food around all the time.  Our society is not supportive of a healthy lifestyle so it’s very hard to maintain a dream when you don’t set yourself up for success.

What changed for you to overcome those struggles?

Well, like I said, it all started because I want to have children, healthy pregnancies, and be healthy for the longevity of their lives, so when I decided to do this, I did.

What kind of support system have you set yourself up with?

All junk is out of my house.  My husband is supportive.  My family is supportive (or they are very much trying to be and getting better every day), and my friends totally have my back.  I do have one friend in particular who goes above and beyond to make sure that if I cheat, it’s not going to be because of her, so she’s literally changed menus and cooking styles just to keep me going.

How do you celebrate the victories, big and small? 

The only way I can…I send texts to family and friends.  I may buy a new article of clothing or do a little something to reward myself.  What I really want to do is grab a glass of wine or a piece of red velvet cake with cream cheese icing, but you can’t do that, or the victories will be lost.

Let’s talk details, How are you losing it?

Counting calories and working out.  I know exactly what goes in and I know exactly how hard I have to work to get it off.  Simple math.  In fact, said friend from earlier and I call it our bank.  We have cheap meals and expensive meals.  The more “expensive” the meal, the harder you have to work to get a calorie deficite.

What’s been your favorite discovery in this journey?

Finally feeling good about myself.  I still have a long way to go and although I’ve changed in appearance and I know I look different, I’m still my own worst critic.  I’m still the one that sees the naked girl in the mirror, but I don’t let that discourage me because although it’s not pretty, it is changing everyday and I’m looking forward to the end result that I know is in there.

What keeps you going when you have a bad week?

I think the worst I’ve been was at a celebratory dinner with family and friends.  I allowed myself to have a few drinks and dessert.  I don’t kill myself b/c I know these times are coming so I prepare earlier in the week with a bunch of “below maintenance calorie days” so that I can indulge.  I can’t say I’ve had a “bad” week since Feb. 12, 2013 because I’ve consistently lost weight every week except 1 (where I gained ½ a lb and that was also the week of my 30th bday).  There are weeks that I lose less than I thought I should but I go back to my food entry.  I ask “have I been honest with myself on how much/what I’ve eaten?”  Overall I just try to keep momentum.  I might get bummed but to me, this is a lifestyle change so it’s something I just accept and keep going.

If you could give a piece of advice to someone else trying to lose it what would it be?

You can do it!  And Don’t give up!  The most asked question is how I’ve done it.  My answer is simple…I decided I was going to change and I’ve let NOTHING falter that decision.  People will try to pump you up by tearing themselves down.  First of all, this is the MOST ANNOYING thing that they can do.  They’ll say “Oh…you didn’t eat even a single bite of cake.  I’m so proud of you.  I gave in and had a small piece and some ice cream and now I feel terrible.”  My response is ALWAYS…when you decide you’re not going to do it, you won’t.  It’s that simple.  I’ve done fad diets here and there and realized that when I was doing them, it was always for someone else and not because I wanted to do it.  This makes it so much harder than it already is.  But, I decided to do it for me, and that’s what I hang my hat on all the time.

What three words would you use to describe this journey?

Difficult / Challenging / Rewarding

What is your favorite healthy meal/treat/substitute/etc?

Favorite thing to date is Stuffed bell peppers.  I altered a recipe to work with low calorie foods I can eat and when I make them, I get to eat a bunch!!!  I still love to eat…I just eat better, low calorie foods.

What question do you think I should have asked? 

What are some of the small things you want to do that you couldn’t do before you lost the weight?

What would the answer be?

One of my first goals was to be able to walk into a standard, generic clothing store..one where they don’t sell plus sizes, pick up something off the rack and go into a dressing room and have it fit.  This one was incredibly scary for me because I couldn’t do this for over 15 years.  I shopped mainly at old navy or target in the plus section.  Recently macy’s, where you can get plus sizes.  I’ve now been able to wear stuff form JCPenney’s from the Jr. Section and Macy’s from the regular sizes and Jr. Section.

I also would like to be able to buy tall boots and have them zip up around my calves without having to have stretch in them.

I would like to be able to wear/feel comfortable in a bikini.  I’ve never been able to do this.  I’m a long way from this goal, but it will happen.

Only YOU can decide to change your life.  Every day will be a struggle.  You will have to re-learn how to do everything you’ve always known how to do.  Once you make that change for yourself, your whole life will change.  I still hate to work out.  There are days I’d rather do ANYTHING else…more often than not.  It’s hard learning how to cook again.  It’s hard to learn how to shop again.  I’ve had to do more prep work in the last 6 months than I’ve ever had to do, BUT it’s worth it.  I don’t have that bite of cake.  I don’t choose to eat the bad over the good.  I’ve learned to really enjoy the things I can have.  I prep my food.  I surround myself with support and I allow myself the occasional cheat.  Not cheat day or cheat meal or cheat week.  I allow an occasional cheat like a glass or wine, or a beer or even chicken wings.  But in the midst of these cheats, I’m still juggling how I can have what I crave/love while staying on track.  Instead of eating 10-12 chicken wings with fries and ranch, or worse, macaroni and cheese, I eat 6 wings, little ranch and I have a side salad and steamed veggies.  I get full on the good stuff instead of leaving room for all the bad.

I’m officially down 66.5 lbs in my journey.  I’m not gonna lie, I know this last 37 are going to be the hardest but I’ll stick with it or die trying

Happy Quarter Bouncing!

Eat your Veggies

This whole site is pretty much dedicated to my mom in some way, as is my other one over at Paper Rainbows. She’s pretty amazeballs. I see a trend of my all around idolizing mi madre.  A trend I hope my daughter will continue. So in a nut shell, I get a lot from my mom:

  • my unmistakable charm
  • my undeniable wit
  • my dance moves – except the dolphin, that is my creation
  • my love for coke (a cola)
  • love for the color black
  • creative masterminds
  • my all around awesome-ness

There is one thing inparticular I did not get from her. My new found lover for Veggies. Justin and Jenni (you’ll meet her tomorrow) are to thank for that. So for the love of veggies, I am not going to sing their praises, I am simply going to share with you this cheat sheet I found over at Back on Pointe, and let the veggies speak for themselves!

veggie cheat sheet

Eating your veggies will get you one step closer to bouncing a quarter off your ass. Get to cooking or not, heck I don’t care how you eat them, just eat them!

Losing It : Justin Pilcher

This is a guest post from the trainer, Justin Pilcher of CrossFit South Acadiana. I asked him why he wants to get healthy. I should have known I would not get a great big long post. I got simple. Heck I already told you the man keeps it simple in his nutrition and in his work-outs.

When I was first introduced to Justin this is the picture I was shown:

168192_495906091316_1773756_nI know…it is kinda scary. However, this is the Justin I became besties for life with:

156202_10151181199821317_1656093706_nMuch better. These are his words, not mine…and what can I say, the man got to the point.

Why I want to lose it? I’ll tell you why. II want to do anything and everything without hesitation or worry that I can’t or that it will be too hard. I like having my same jeans from high school. If I lose it I can have my favorite foods without guilt. I get extra smiles and compliments on how I look when I lose it. I get paid to lose it. Losing it is an addiction you can be proud of. I lose it to look better naked than clothed. I lose it so my sexual partner can enjoy me therefore creating the best win win ever! Move it and lose it!