The Inevitable The Plan - Update 1

Greetings and salutations! How fare thee this fine Friday morning?

Okay - I've returned from King Richard's Faire.... But how was everyone's week? Yesterday I received notification that as of Monday, provided I bring proper documentation, I will officially be an employee of my current company! So-long temp status! And how did I celebrate, you ask? By sticking to my 1300 calorie limit and going to bed at a decent hour so I can pop Workout 2 of Phase 1 in JM Body revolution before going to work. Tempted, though I was, to stop for a bottle of vodka on the way home, certain I would just stick to a limit of two - I plugged two vodka cranberries and one serving of the dinner I planned into MFP. 1500 calories. Nope. Not today.



No, I didn't jump and shriek for joy when I saw that number, like I did the last time. I was, however, happy that it wasn't any LARGER.

Instead of bouncing out of bed Monday morning, charged and full of energy, ready to take on this weight challenge - I had to drag myself from the warm, cozy covers and stumble to the kitchen for coffee after a whopping three hours of sleep. I assured myself I'd do the workout whence I got home. No problem.

When I got home, fatigue was setting in again and a little voice started whispering, "It's okay. Just do workouts 1 & 2 tomorrow. You'll be good." Then I thought of you (thank you!), the plan, my fabulous jeans, wanting my "guns" (of the arm variety) back, the flat stomach again, and those annoying, god-forsaken saddlebags on my hips gone! I dug out my worn workout clothes (a swanky new workout outfit is on my to-get list as soon as I can pull it off) and socks. When I saw my sneakers in the closet, I said, "Hello, sneakers. It's been a while!" Adorning myself with each piece of workout regalia was like layering on some pride. I tied the last sneaker and bounded down the stairs to the den.

The first time I did JM Body Revolution, I was able to complete the first two workouts of phase one without modifying any of the poses. Not so this time. I was disappointed, but not surprised. I'm trying not to beat myself up over it - I'll get there again. But I hate feeling like a - um - kitty cat. So I'm going to channel that feeling and use it to propel me to work harder through these workouts. Workouts 1 & 2 are for two weeks. Each twice a week. My goal is by next Thursday to be doing all those push-ups on my toes! I just may throw a push-up challenge over the weekend, in between the two cardios I plan on busting out. Hmmm.

My muscles have been so deliciously sore. After a month of throwing myself whole-heartedly (I am an all-or-nothing kinda gal) into an unhealthy existence in which I arose each morning with an icky film of guilt coating my psyche - it's been a treat these past few days to take pride in making the right decisions.
I missed my cardio workout yesterday, but will make up for over the weekend. Other than that, I've stuck to the schedule and my calorie count. Well, yesterday was 1400, just a small slip. I anticipate a few drinks over the weekend, what with it being the playoffs and all. (Go Pats!) But I'm going to track my calories and only Sunday will I allow for a 2500 calorie day. Even though Sunday is supposed to be a rest day, I'm going to do some kickboxing so the day won't be a wash.

I haven't done the menu planning, as anticipated. It didn't work out for this week, but it hasn't been detrimental. I'll take some time Saturday to get the dinner menus planned, along with a healthy Football Sunday menu. I have tried two new recipes this week - one dinner and one snack.

Serves 4
This Quick Chicken Cacciatore is courtesy of I was on the prowl for something I could make without stopping at the grocery store. One of the greatest things about cooking from scratch is that I \ usually have most ingredients on hand. I have a Giada recipe for Chicken Cicciatore (of course!) but it calls for four bone-in, skin-in breasts and four bone-in skin-on thighs. It takes a while to cook, and since it's served with the sauce; the skin isn't really delicious. I usually pull the meat from the bones before serving it. This is a quicker, neater, just as yummy version. I didn't have any olives on hand, so I added some chopped up olives for a salty, briny bite. I also added five garlic cloves. The next time I might add a few shakes of crushed red pepper for just a bit of heat.


  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 8-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary or 3/4 teaspoon dried, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 14-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 3/4 cup sliced jarred roasted red peppers, rinsed
  • 1/4 cup quartered Kalamata olives


  1. Place flour in a shallow bowl. Cut each chicken breast in half on the diagonal to make 4 roughly equal portions; sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour and transfer to a plate. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the flour.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.
  3. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pan. Add mushrooms, onion, rosemary and the remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is soft and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the vegetables with the reserved flour and cook, stirring, until coated. Add wine to the pan and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add drained tomatoes, broth, roasted red peppers and olives; bring to a lively simmer over medium-low heat.
  4. Return the chicken to the pan and continue cooking, stirring once or twice, until the liquid has thickened slightly and the chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Serve the chicken with the sauce, garnished with rosemary, if desired.


Per serving: 341 calories; 12 g fat ( 2 g sat , 8 g mono ); 63 mg cholesterol; 21 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 28 g protein; 2 g fiber; 720 mg sodium; 479 mg potassium.
Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (27% daily value), Vitamin A (21% dv)
Carbohydrate Servings: 1 1/2
Exchanges: 1/2 starch, 1 1/2 vegetable, 3 lean meat, 2 fat

Make 16 bars
While at the grocery store this week I was scrambling for snack for me and to put in Isaac's lunch and I saw (drum roll......) granola bars. I briefly considered snagging a box, then my inner kitchen witch conjured up the idea, "Make them..." and poofed it into my. After getting back home, I punched "granola bars" into the Eating Well search, and chose these. They're sweet, chewyscrumptious and simple! Toasted oats are called for. If you're like I used to be - panic ensues whence you see an ingredient listed that you don't have and it's just WAY to late to bundle the kids into the car and run to the grocery store, never fear! As long as you have rolled (not instant) oats, spread them on a baking sheet and toast them in a 350 oven for ten minutes - stirring them a couple of times. Whence they are golden and filling your kitchen with that delectable, sweet nutty aroma - they're done! You could definitely substitute walnuts for pecans, and pretty much any other dried fruit (or multiple dried fruits and a combo of pecans and walnuts) in this mixture. It would just change the nutrition. If you have your hand-dandy MFP - you can put your new recipe in have the new info configured. 


  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups toasted oats
  • 2/3 cup chopped dried cranberries, or golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


    1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line an 8-by-11-inch pan with foil. Coat with cooking spray.
    2. Whisk egg, egg white, sugar, oil, cinnamon, salt and vanilla in a large bowl. Stir in oats, cranberries (or raisins), pecans and flour. Spread in prepared pan.
    3. Bake until golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool; cut into bars with a lightly oiled knife.


    Per serving: 119 calories; 3 g fat ( 0 g sat , 1 g mono ); 13 mg cholesterol; 22 g carbohydrates; 2 g protein;1 g fiber; 44 mg sodium; 17 mg potassium.
    Carbohydrate Servings: 1 1/2
    Exchanges: 1 1/2 starch, 1 1/2 other carbohydrate, 1/2 fat


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