Thursday, September 10, 2015

Quinoa salad and hummus

I was at Costco yesterday to return some fuzzy (moldy) avocados and I wanted to pick up some hummus. On my way to the coolers I walked past their pre-mixed salads and saw this quinoa salad. I know it's more cost efficient to make it myself but I wanted something quick.

I bought this quinoa salad and it's quite tasty. It's 280 calories per 1 cup, 39g carbs, 9g fat, 12g protein. I had 1.5 cups of this for lunch with no extra protein so I'll edit later to let you know how full it kept me.

My friend brought these little hummus containers for camping over the long weekend and I really liked them. So I picked them up while I was there as well because I was craving it after eating it on the weekend. I initially wanted snap peas to dip into it but they were out so I went with carrots instead.

Per individual container they're 130 calories, 10g carbs, 9g fat, and 4g protein. It was the same price for about 250g less than the 2 pack but I like that it's pre-portioned and I don't have to dirty extras dishes or containers. Perfect for on the go!

Incorporating more veggies

Even though I'm eating more carbs I've been aiming to eat more vegetables. It's amazing how good my body feels when I eat more veg. They're nutrient dense and it's hard to go over calories if you're eating mostly vegetables since they are low in calories.

I forgot to take a picture of my Costco haul on Sunday but I bought way too much. I won't be shopping for a while since I have a ton of meat I need to use now. I still had some chicken breasts, black bean burgers, and sole fillets in the freezer and I ended up buying a huge package of ground beef. I guess I'm set for a while.

I also bought a ton of veggies so that's also forcing me to eat more vegetables so they don't go bad, haha. While I was at Costco though I was thinking about what to make for lunches and I remember that my cousin was nice enough to share her garden cucumbers with me. So I bought a box of tomatoes, a bag of peppers, and feta cheese for a delicious salad.

Chop the veggies into bite-sized pieces, add olive oil, balsamic and white vinegar, herbs, fresh garlic, and feta cheese for the most tasty salad ever. I mince the garlic very fine or use a fine grater and I use half a clove.

This was lunch the other Saturday: the above salad and 6 oz of lean ground beef.

Another great way to eat more veggies is to sautee spinach. I love it with avocado toast and eggs.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

More carbs :D

It feels like I write this every other post but really, my diet has been all over the place again. I failed to meal prep last week and I ate a ton of candy. I've been logging most of my food in My Fitness Pal but I end up stopping halfway through the day  because I know that it's going to be over.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Monster cookie bars

I'm on a baking kick apparently. I told my slo-pitch team that I would bring cookies for our game on Tuesday so I made the survival cookies I just posted but they're too good to give away. So I found this recipe and I had to make it. As stated in the other post most times I cut the sugar in half in recipes. This is one of those recipes.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Survival cookies - a healthier cookie

I made cookies the other night thinking they were going to be for my slo-pitch team but I gave some to my parents and the rest have found a home in my freezer where I've been eating 2-3 a day.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

My new lunch bag

I bought a new lunch bag last week. I have a few but they stink from stuff leaking and one of them turns stuff onto the side which is likely what's causing the leaking. My friend and I stopped in at Walmart and Superstore before heading home from camping on the search for umbrellas. I lost my good one a few weeks ago and she has a wedding to go to today and rain is in the forecast.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Two weeks of vacation!

If you haven't noticed, I love summer. I love the heat, and HOT days. Tomorrow marks the end of my first week of vacation but I also have next week off. I started the weekend with a friend who came to visit. We went for dinner and played tourist, it was a lot of fun.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Spicy (not hot) chicken stir fry

I got home from camping today and wow did I eat... and drink, a lot of calories since Sunday. I got some biking and hiking in but with the snacking, staying up late, and drinking I was still at a caloric surplus. Needless to say I'm not feeling very great. So I bought some frozen veggies while looking for an umbrella (it's been raining her the last 2 days).

I called it spicy stir fry because it doesn't use the 'traditional' sauces, spices, or herbs that most stir fries use. This one has cumin, paprika, and chili powder.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Have you hit a plateau?

I see people at work and restaurants eating salads, yogurt, fruit, and other healthy foods and notice they're still overweight. The people at work I've seen for years eating their healthy foods but are the still the same size. What's the problem?

Just because you're eating healthy food doesn't mean it's impossible to eat too many calories, even if they are from nutrient dense foods. We also work in an office/call center - if you don't exercise you burn very few calories. On rest days even with walking 4 km my activity tracker tells me I burn between 1300-1600 calories. If you aren't aware how many calories are in your food you are likely eating at a surplus. Meaning: you aren't going to lose weight or fat unless you are at a calorie deficit.

If you are eating healthy and exercising regularly and you're no longer losing weight/fat then that means you need to re-evaluate your calorie needs and intake. If you calculated your caloric needs when you were 25 lbs heavier they're going to be quite different. This difference is likely the reason you aren't losing weight because you are no longer at a deficit and it's possible that you are now eating at a surplus.

I've written about this a few times before but fat loss and gaining muscle all comes down to calories in versus calories out. If you're eating more than you're burning you are not going to see results. Let's look at some numbers:

To calculate your total daily expenditure (TDEE; the number of calories your body burns in 24 hours) you consider your basal metabolic rate (BMR), activity level, weight, age, and gender. There are a few ways to calculate the number of calories but I like the Harris-Benedict equation:

For men:
BMR = 66 + (13.7 x weight in kilograms) + (5 x height in centimeters) - (6.8 x age in years)

For women:
BMR = 655 + (9.6 x weight in kilograms) + (1.8 x height in centimeters) - (4.7 x age in years)

Conversions for measurements are 1 inch = 2.54 centimeters and 1 kilogram = 2.2 pounds

I'm a 26 year old female
I'm 5'6" (5 feet x 12" = 60" + 6" = 66" x 2.54 cm = 167.64 cm)
My weight is normally around 138 lbs, give or take a few pounds each way (138 lbs / 2.2 = 62.73 kg)

BMR = 655 + (9.6 x 62.73 = 602.21) + (1.8 x 167.64 = 301.74) - (4.7 x 26 = 122.2)
BMR = 655 + 602.21 + 301.74 - 122.2
BMR = 1437 calories

This means that my body requires 1437 calories to function, not including calories required for activity which is the next step in calculating your TDEE. You take this number and multiply it from the number in the table below based on your activity level/job.

Activity level  Multiplier Description
Sedentary BMR x 1.2   little or no exercise, desk job
Lightly active BMR x 1.375 light exercise or sports 3-5 days/week
Moderately active BMR x 1.55 moderate exercise or sports 3-5 days/ week
Very active BMR x 1.725 hard exercise or sports 6-7 days/week
Extremely active BMR x 1.9 hard daily exercise or sports and physical labor job or twice-a-day training (football camp, etc.)

I have a desk job and I workout pretty intensely so I would choose moderately active. If I had a more physical job I'd choose very active. So I take my BMR 1437 x 1.55 = 2227. To maintain my weight I would eat 2227 calories per day. The recommended deficit to lose weight is 500 calories in a day. Over a week this is 3500 calories and 3500 calories equals 1 pound which means you should lose a pound in a week.

I pulled this information from Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle but you can find it on many websites. As noted previously you can use and it will calculate everything for you, all you have to do it type in your information.

So if you have been working out hard and following your meal plan but you're not noticing a difference in measurements, clothing, and the scale, then I recommend recalculating your caloric needs and you should notice a difference within two weeks, sometime sooner.

If you use My Fitness Pal it also calculates these numbers for you using your information but a lot of the time it suggests 1200 calories. I find this to be extremely low, especially if you exercise but it is something that will help you lose weight fast.

I hope this helps some people with their fitness journeys and don't be afraid to ask me any questions.

-- Kelsey

Tuesday, July 21, 2015


I know what you're thinking... "It's not winter! Why is she making chili?!" I do normally prefer salads in the summer but hey, I needed a change from my usual foods. I used the recipe on the package of the veggies as a guideline because I wanted more protein/fat and fewer carbs than the recipe called for.