Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Diet Revamp: There's more to this than running

Today's lunch: White Coq au Bier (a half-serving) and Roasted Sweet Potato-
Quinoa-Black Bean Salad. Snacks not shown: A banana.
If I want an afternoon snack, I have a slice of whole grain bread
and a little bit of peanut butter.
So far all I've been posting about here are my runs, but this Upward Trend toward a fitter healthier me also involves some significant changes to my diet. My husband, Patrick, and I are working together to figure out how to keep what we like about our diet while allowing me to make improvements and get healthier.

The things we want to keep are:
  • Eating most meals together -- we sit down at the table together and eat more or less the same food for at least 2 meals a day (breakfast and dinner) and we both value this highly.
  • Eating mostly Patrick's (and our) home cooking -- Patrick is a wonderful cook and he enjoys experimenting with his cooking, trying new cooking methods and flavor combos. We do not want to take that away from him, or take away any of his joy in it.
  • Beer -- We drink and enjoy craft beer together and do not want to give that up. We have always and ever enjoyed one beer a night, taking notes and really savoring it, so it's not too hard to keep it part of our healthful eating
  • Cooking one big and special meal over the weekend -- working on it together is good bonding time and it makes leftovers for lunches for most of the week

The things I want to change are: 
  • Eating less overall -- there is no way I can eat the same amount of food as Patrick without gaining weight and losing health
  • Eating more vegetables that Patrick doesn't like -- neither of us are great vegetable eaters, but he's got a shorter list of Vegetables That Are Food than I do and I don't want to miss out on some lovely veggies that I like and he doesn't
  • Food planning -- I do best at eating healthful foods if I have the whole day planned out from the start. It allows me to make informed choices about trade-offs (e.g.: If I have that donut, I'll have to pass on beer). I map the whole day out at breakfast and then just know that I'm not having that donut today. If I want one tomorrow, I'd better plan it in from the beginning.
  • Calorie counting -- I have successfully lost 60 pounds counting calories, gained it back when I stopped, and want to go back to it because I found it basically painless and an easy way to make sure I was eating well (and not too much). It's part of the planning I do every morning at breakfast.

We're approaching the changes we make as an experiment -- we're trying new things to see if they work. If they don't work, then we can just try something else. If they do work, then we keep that as a tool to help us both get healthier. 

The lunch in the photo is what I'm having for lunch most of the week -- a half-size portion of the White Coq au Bier (like coq au vin, only we use beer instead of wine) we made on Saturday with a nice big, colorful salad. The salad has roasted sweet potatoes, roasted red peppers, dried cranberries, black beans, quinoa, arugula, and a nice big bed of mixed greens. This lunch is kicking ass and taking names -- the salad is amazing and the Coq au Bier absolutely delicious.

I think the general approach -- replace some of my portion of what we're eating together with something that Patrick wouldn't eat anyway -- is going to to be a useful tool in our toolbox. We just need to make sure we don't get tripped up by kitchen logistics. Our kitchen is small and awkwardly laid out, so we have to coordinate what we're doing in there.

No comments:

Post a Comment