Category Archives for "Habits"

Spaghetti or Orangetti?

Last time I was shopping I went to pick up a few spaghetti squashes. I was not sure where they went. In there place was a familiar shaped squash but not the same color. What, could it be an "Orange" spaghetti squash? Yep. 

I'm not sure what they did or how they did it but they made a spaghetti squash that usually has a yellow hue to orange. I just had to try it. Actually I picked up three of them. 

Here is what I did with one of my Orangetti Squash. 

Spaghetti Squash "Pasta"

You can take the long way to prep it:

Preheat your oven to 325.

Pierce it (the squash, not the oven) with a sharp knife all around the skin.

Roast it on a pan (you don't need any water) for about 1 hour.

Remove from oven, slice in half long ways, remove the seeds and take the flesh out with a fork.


Or the short way:

Just pierce the squash as suggested above, then microwave it for 8 minutes (flipping it over at 4) and it tastes the same.



That’s as quick as you can cook pasta…

It looks just like spaghetti, yet has a ton less calories and carbs, but a lot more nutrients.

Top it with your favorite pasta toppings and you're good to go!

It doesn't quite taste like pasta, but resembles it and has a great taste in and of itself.

Here is the sauce I made today:

1 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes

1 teaspoon basil

½ teaspoon oregano

½ teaspoon sea salt

1 Tablespoon dried parsley

1 Tablespoon dried onions

5 cooked Italian sausage cut into bite size chunks 

I heated this on the stove and let it simmer for ½ hour. It was delicious!

To your best Health,

Coach Nancy


Ingredient Food Log

The importance of keeping a nutrition log for increasing eating awareness is a well known fact. This can be accomplished by using a fancy app on your phone, a notebook kept on your kitchen counter, snapping a picture of your meals, or using one of Get Fit NH's food log books.

But what about keeping a journal of all the ingredients you eat.



What?

Why?



Let me explain more with an example.

If you eat an apple and natural (unroasted or no-salt added) almonds for a snack, you'd simply write:

 1. Apple
   2. Almonds



Just 2 ingredients

.

On the other hand, if you eat a Krispy Kreme doughnut, you'd write (better make sure your pencil is extra sharp):



1. Enriched white flour contains 

2. bleached white flour

3. Niacin

4. Reduced Iron

5. Thiamine Mononitrate

6. Riboflavin

7. Folic Acid

8. Dextrose

9.Vegetable Shortening (Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and/or Cottonseed Oil)

10. Water

11. Sugar

12. Soy

13. Flour

14. Egg Yolks,

15. Vital Wheat Gluten

16. Yeast

17. Nonfat Milk

18. Yeast Nutrients

19. Calcium Sulfate

20. Ammonium Sulfate,

21. Dough Conditioners

22. Calcium Dioxide

23. Monocalcium Phosphate

24. Dicalcium Phosphate

25. Diammonium Phosphate

26. Sodium Stearoyl-2-Lactylate

27. Whey

28. Starch

29. Ascorbic Acid

30. Sodium Bicarbonate

31. Calcium Carbonate

32. Salt

33. Monoglycerides

34. Diglycerides

35. Lecithin

36. Calcium Propionate (Preservative)

37. Cellulose Gum

38. Malted Barley Flour

39. Natural Flavors

40. Artificial Flavors

41. Enzymes

42. Sodium

43. Caseinate

44. Corn Maltodextrin

45. Corn Syrup Solids

46. BHT (to Help Protect Flavor)

 Glaze Contains: 47. Sugar   48. Water   49. Corn Starch   50. Calcium Carbonate   51. Calcium Sulfate 52. Agar   53. Dextrose   54.Locust Bean Gum   55. Disodium Phosphate    56. Sorbitan                       57. Monostearate  58. Mono   59. Diglycerides   60. Artificial Flavor  61. Salt.
   

61. ingredients 

Which do you think is better for you?
 


Makes you think twice about the doughnut, huh?  Of course few people eat JUST a doughnut during the day. You'd have to then add in everything else you eat/drink during that meal too and then the rest of the day. 



Aim to eat foods with 5 or less ingredients.

 While we don't know what most additives do to us in the long run at this time, the less junk we can put in our body, especially of ingredients we can't pronounce, the better. 

What if you went to your doctor for surgery and he said "Well, I really don't know how this will work in the long run, but heck, why not give it a whirl..."

  

We don't really know if this is going to have an effect on your body in the long run... Um, I'd rather play it safe than wait and see to find out.

 So if you are a bit too reliant on packaged and processed food, give it a try. 

Take a look at all you're eating and drinking and write it down daily! If your hand starts to cramp from too much writing by lunchtime, maybe it’s time to switch up your foods!

To Your Best Health,

Coach Nancy

Recipe for Change

 You think about food recipes, dinner recipes, smoothie recipes, recipes for lunch or snacks, even dessert recipes. 

But do you ever think about a recipe for change.

Change in you. Is there a "recipe" -- a 'secret sauce' if you will?

Change means something different for everyone. Change can be great and change can be bad.

What I do know is getting what you want -- getting the change you want -- rarely comes from getting your superficial “wants” met. It comes from working towards earning those wants. Working towards what you are wanting to change. Putting in the hard work that creates change. 

The effort to get results, to make meaningful change, is more rewarding then the destination.

FOCUS ON CHANGING.... and when you do this you will find that there is within you a strong desire- The Will- to guide you. When you pay attention, when you can hear it, it knows that what you are striving to change can be done, it will need some effort.

It's why it takes laser focus to ultimately be successful in any aspect of your life.


Here is the true "recipe" for meaningful change.

Get clear

Figure out your "want"  

Work towards it with determination.

Tune-out the noise

Tune out the naysayers

Put your head down

Keep plugging away up the proverbial hill.

Tune-in to your inner world.

Walk boldly & steadily but with baby steps.

Make small but resolute changes.


Simmer. Forever.

Let cool. Enjoy.

Servings Per Recipe: Unlimited happiness and resolution.


To Your Best Health,

Coach Nancy


Creamy Chicken Skillet

One pan meals are my favorite. While I like doing dishes, I don't like looking at a sink piled high with them. This one dish wonder helps me to keep my sanity in more ways than one. 

If you have one dish dinner meals, pass those along by replying with the recipe in the comment section. 

To your Best Health,

Coach Nancy

Creamy Chicken Skillet

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces

3 slices bacon

1 small yellow onion, chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced

6 oz. white mushrooms, sliced

1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar

1 14.5-oz. can coconut milk

2 cups fresh kale, stems removed and shredded

Salt and pepper, to taste

Cook the bacon in a large skillet until crispy. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and crumble. Set aside. Discard the bacon fat from the pan except for one tablespoon. Add the onion to the pan and sauté for 4-5 minutes until soft. Push the onion to one side and add the chicken to the pan. Lightly brown the chicken, and then stir in the bell peppers and mushrooms. Cook for an additional 5 minutes. Stir in the bacon. Add the white wine vinegar to the pan to deglaze. Add the coconut milk and kale. Cook for 3-4 minutes until the kale is wilted and the sauce is slightly thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm.

Why You Really Don’t Want to Change

People resist change because they focus on what they have to give up instead of what they gain. Think about it, when you go on a 'DIET' you often say, I can no longer eat this or that. I can't eat after this time or I can only drink water. You're focused on what you have to give up. It puts your mindset in a very negative state.

What if instead you focused on all the things you will gain?

Since we are talking about food, let's suppose you are going to change the way you are eating each day. You've decided to eat produce and protein. I love that idea! I could see all those items inside the grocery store that I should no longer have on my plate. Instead I am going to focus on the produce section that often gets neglected. 

  • I'm going to try a new vegetable recipe 
  • I'll find a fruit I've never had before
  • Favorites veggies will fill my cart
  • I'll add in some fresh spices to give it a splash of Zing
  • I'll find a vegetable I can eat raw, eaten hot or eaten cold. 
  • I'll search for a fruit that I can eat the peal

Do you see where I am going with this? The produce section is the world at my fingertips. Our grocery stores can get just about any variety at any time of the year. 

Guess what? The meat department is very much the same, I can see the butcher or the seafood clerk or the deli counter for great protein sources. I can find more protein sources in the coolers and freezers. 

Think positive. You can positively change yourself, change your life for the better. The process doesn't have to be miserable. In fact the process of change is where all the focus should be. 

To Your Best Health,

Coach Nancy


 


Practice Practice Practice

Changing our behavior to become healthier takes work. Think of it like practicing your golf swing. No one is good at it the first time up to the tee. In fact many times we miss the ball totally the first time but after a bit of time, some help from a coach, encouragement from peers, you get better.

In my experience, changing our normal will involve some mishaps- some missed balls. That's okay. Its practice. I know many of us want to be perfect and not let others see our mishaps. But you are human and so are we. You'll get back up and keep on practicing. 

Next time you decide to add in more vegetables or stop eating mindlessly while watching TV or taking seconds when you're not really hungry anymore remember to practice the new you. 

It is actually freeing to stop trying to be perfect. You can learn your own resilience through struggles.

To Your Best Health,

Coach Nancy

How to be Successful when Eating Healthy

Habits of Successful People

Successful people notice, learn, and adapt to reach their goals.  A great practice to get into at the end of each week is a strategy called Review and Prepare. 

First REVIEW, look back at your calendar and see how successful you were last week.  

  • Do you see lots of checkmarks or is it lots of circles and question marks?
  • What went right last week?  What went wrong and why?

 

Next, PREPARE for the week ahead. 

  • Based on what went well last week, prepare to do more of that this next week
  • Based on what went wrong and why?  What do you need to do to make sure you can improve this week. 

 

What do you need TO DO TODAY to be successful this week?

  • Plan your meal
  • Prep your food
  • Be Prepared!

 To your Best Health,

Coach Nancy


"The future depends on what you do today." - Gandhi

   

4 Reasons to Prep All Your Meals

4 Reasons Why Meal Prepping Works:

  • It takes the excuse out of eating well.
    • Say goodbye to “I have no time to cook today,” and “There was nothing healthy at home for me to eat.”
  • It gives you more control over what you eat.  
    • More homemade meals means less takeout and meals at restaurants which also means more green stuff in your pockets.  
  • It gets you in the habit of eating portioned meals.
    • For storage, you will pre-portion out your carbs, proteins, and fats for each day.
  • It frees up more time in your schedule
    • What will you do with your extra time??

 

Here are a couple of strategies to help you find the best meal prepping technique for you. 

Cook 1x Per Week 

On Sunday afternoon (or whatever day you have 2-3 hours) put in an epic cooking session.  Bulk cook everything you will need fo assembling meals throughout the week.  Fire up the oven, get all your pans out, plug in the rice cooker, and start filling up crockpots.  This strategy works well for 1-2 person households or VERY busy households that don't have much time in the evening. 

Cook 2x Per Week

This is probably the most common strategy.

On Sunday afternoon and Wednesday evening cook up what you need for the next 3 days.  Make a 3-day meal plan and get to it.  This is a great strategy to save yourself a ton of time in the kitchen.  Spend 1-2 hours prepping, cooking, and cleaning and then don't cook for 3 days. This strategy works well for a larger family that has evening obligations most days of the week.  

Each meal prep day will probably take you about 2 hours of cooking (4 hours per week), but then you are off the hook for days, which ultimately saves you lots of time and hassle.  Put in the work on the front end and save time on the back end.  

The "Dinner is Lunch" Strategy

Some people like to cook and enjoy cooking most days of the week.  For this type of person, try the double portion dinner strategy. 

Each time you make your evening meal, you will make a double portion and save the second portion for lunch the next day.  You get two birds with one stone.  

What do you do to make your food preparations go faster or smoother?

We'd love to hear from you in the comment section below.

To Your Best Health,

Coach Nancy



Are You Hungry?

What does hunger feel like?
Everyone describes it a bit differently, how do you describe that feeling?

 Some have described it as: "Well, when I am in a good, healthy eating pattern, hunger feels like a grumbly gnawing feeling, but bearable. When I have eaten too many carbs and sugars for a stretch, hunger feels like more of an empty, must shove food in now feeling, usually with some shakiness because my blood sugar has dropped. I can always tell the clear difference."

Others like this:  "I'm not sure I know what hunger really feels like. When I'm being mindful, I usually need to stop and think, am I really hungry right now or is it something else? When it's hunger, there is an empty feeling.  I often think I am hungry but in reality I am procrastinating on a job task that I don't want to do. Procrastination and then stress because I am not doing what I should be leads me to eating when I am not hungry.

What does hunger feels like to you?

Listening to our bodies is one of our biggest assets.
Mastering is allowing our body to talk to us knowing we will listen.
Listening to how your body feels while you eat. Understanding the level at which you need to eat in order to remain comfortably full, not overstuffed, and yet ‘feel’ hunger before it is time to eat again sounds easy but is much more difficult to do. ​

Take the challenge. Eat each meal this week only if you feel hunger before hand. 

Tell me what you find out about yourself.

To your best health,

Coach Nancy


Dear Me…….

Dear Me, 

Remember that what seems huge or impossible will eventually become a distant memory when it's over and done with. Your opinion and abilities will continue to change over time, and what seems very important now will be replaced by a different priority in the future. Just do the best you can, and take small steps towards better health every day.

Yesterday is gone and today is a new day. A new start. Get back on track and move forward. (I've had to tell myself this once or twice, or 1,000 times.

See, now you feel like crap, shouldn't have eaten that last night huh?

Was it really worth it...?

How many weeks will it take to undo that?

Why did you do that

‪Look at the big picture if it only once no problem, move on. If it is an old habit restarting, refocus and fix it.

‪Start over now... which I did... today.

‪Cut it out idiot. Coach taught you better that that!

Why did you do it? Should have had that glass of water first. Remember it's a mental game. It really wasn't worth it.

This week I am looking forward to increasing my happy healthy life- without food guilt. In fact I wrote myself a note to help me. The constant reminder that consistent action over the long term will far outweigh the small discrepancies. What about you? What are you going to write to you?

To your best health,

Coach Nancy