Update: slow and steady

If you read my Jenny Craig food reviews, you know I’ve been on a weight loss journey. The food was good and I did lose weight. I plateaued about a month and a half ago.

Even though I am not eating Jenny Craig meals, I have been eating very similar to those meals. I use the Lose It! app to track my food, water, exercise and weight. I was losing and gaining the same pound and a half for about three week and decided to change some things up. I added a healthy afternoon snack and some simple movements at my desk. I also made myself get up and walk for 15 minutes at work. I guess that was what I needed because the scale moved DOWN this week and it’s officially 16.8 pounds gone.

What are your plateau busters? I’d love to hear from you.

Thanks for reading.

A healthy update

I have finished all of my Jenny Craig meals. I lost a total of 11.9 pounds in the four weeks that I ate those meals. All-in-all it was a good experience as I now have a good idea on what works for me.

I am going to continue to utilize the information I gathered in the past few weeks to continue on my healthy eating journey. Even after hitting a plateau, I used these techniques and managed to hit a 16.8 pound loss. I would like to share some of the things I’ve learned and will be using in the future:

1. Measure! It is amazing how much food we mindlessly eat thinking that we are staying within the recommended serving size. Get yourself a good set of measuring cups and spoons and keep them readily available. When in doubt, weigh it. You can get a nice kitchen scale at a reasonable price if you look for one. I like the Escali Primo Digital Scale , which was picked by Wirecutter as the best digital kitchen scale. There are also some fancy ones that will give you your macros as you measure and add your ingredients. I have been using the Greater Goods Nutrition Scale lately.

2. Figure out what your BMR is. Your Basal Metabolic Rate is the number of calories your body needs to accomplish its most basic life-sustaining functions. By figuring out this number you can determine how many calories you should eat to maintain, gain, or lose weight. You can use this BMR Calculator. Enter your age, gender, height and weight and it will calculate your BMR. A 5 foot 10 inch, 30 year-old female that weighs 200 pounds has a BMR of 1,707 Calories/day. If you add in the normal activity level, you will find out how many calories she can eat in a day to maintain her weight. Once you know your number, you can use it to adjust how many calories you eat and how many calories you need to burn to maintain, gain or lose one pound a week. If you create a deficit of 500 calories a day for a week you will lose 1 pound a week. This is the Calories In, Calories Out (CICO) way to control your weight.

3. Read the label. If you are trying to start a healthy lifestyle, you should know what you are putting in your body. First, look at the ingredient list. Can you pronounce every ingredient? Does anything sound like it came from a lab? Look for actual FOOD ingredients. Second thing I look at on the label, Sodium. You are supposed to consume less than 2300 mg of Sodium a day, per the FDA. If you eat 3 meals a day, keep the Sodium under 800 per meal. I try to keep mine between 500 and 600 mg per meal. To get more information on using the Nutrition Facts Labels, go to the FDA website.

4. Pay attention to your macronutrients. Carbs. Protein. Fat. What percentage of your calorie intake should be carbs, protein, and fat. The 2015–2020 Dietary Guideline for Americans recommends that carbohydrates comprise 45–65% of calories, fat 25–35% of calories, and protein 10–30% of calories. Are you sodium sensitive? Make sure to track those amounts as well.

5. Whole food is ideal, but there are prepared food you can fall back on. I love to cook. I enjoy finding and trying new recipes. I do not enjoy prepping ingredients, nor do I enjoy standing at the stove cooking after work. Prepared food comes to the rescue. Yes, you can find prepared foods that will fit into your eating plan. You just need to visit #3 above and read the label.

6. Move. If you have a desk job, make sure you get up and move around during the day.

7. Hydrate. With all the healthy food you are eating now, you will want to make sure you are staying hydrated. Remember- water has zero calories!

Well, that’s all of my tips and tricks for now. Im learning more and more about losing weight and getting healthy every day. What are your favorite tips and tricks for losing weight and getting healthy? I’d love to hear from all of you.

Thanks for reading.

Jenny Craig breakfast and lunch update

Good afternoon everyone! I hope that you are well.

I’ve been distracted by other things (the news, the weather…) and have not given any updates on my weight loss using Jenny Craig breakfasts and lunches. I haven’t stuck to the program as well this past week but I can proudly say that I’m down 11.5 pounds.

Some comments on the Jenny Craig meals I’ve had recently:

French Toast – It looked like one piece of French toast cut into 3 strips. It smelled so good and tasted even better. Thank goodness it was a portioned meal. I could have eaten a whole loaf of bread cooked that way.

Tortellini with Chicken – The creamy sauce and the tortellini were delicious. The chicken “pieces” were mostly grizzle. I ate around them. I wouldn’t eat this one again.

Pepperoni pizza – I’ve been surprised by how good these little pizzas are and the fact that they are filling. I will miss these once I my stash runs out.

Cheese omelette and chicken sausage – Really delicious and filling. The sausage looked a little disgusting but smelled and tasted fantastic.

I am starting to put together my own food plan based on some of the Jenny Craig foods that I’ve had. I am using the Lose It app to make a plan using calories in and calories out. The plan gives me a set amount of calories I can consume in a day and breaks it up into meals and snacks. For example, an 1900 calorie day would break down to 350 calorie breakfast, 125 calorie morning snack, 450 calorie lunch, 125 calorie afternoon snack, 700 calorie dinner, and a 150 calorie evening snack. Those are guidelines to help me plan. Here is my sample menu:

Breakfast (350 calorie budget): coffee 12 oz. – 4 cal, fat free half and half 4 Tbsp – 40 cal, 2 eggs cooked with Pam – 140 cal, Vanilla non-fat greek yogurt 3/4 cup – 120 cal, blueberries 1/2 cup – 42 cal. Breakfast total= 346 calories

Morning snack (125 calorie budget): Grapes 1 cup – 100 calories, water. Morning snack total = 100 calories

Lunch (450 calorie budget): Teriyaki chicken lettuce wrap (www.simplyrecipes.com) – 427 cal, Asian caramelized pineapple 1/2 cup (www.myrecipes.com) – 61 cal. Lunch total = 488 calories

Afternoon snack (125 calorie budget): Cranberry Almond Whenever Bar – 180 calories, water. Afternoon snack total = 180 calories

Dinner (700 calorie budget): Chicken with garlicky green beans and new potatoes – 393 cal, Klondike Bar Health English Toffee – 230 cal. Dinner total = 623 calories

Evening snack (150 calorie budget): 5 cups microwave movie theater popcorn – 150 cal, flavored seltzer – 0 cal. Evening snack total = 160 calories

Total calories for the day = 1897

I think I can do that, don’t you?

Besides eating healthier, I’ve also started going back to the gym. I don’t always enjoy going, but I always feel good after. I mostly want to increase my stamina by walking on the treadmill.

Here’s to eating healthier and moving more!

Thanks for reading!

Jenny Craig Week 1 results

I’ve been distracted and haven’t been posting my Jenny Craig food and results. I thought I’d share my results after week 1. I lost 4.8 pounds during the first week. I would have lost more if I had stuck with the menu on Saturday and Sunday.

My thoughts on the Max Up program after one week and one coach call:

1. If I am going to spend $180 a week for a program, I expect all foods on the menu to be included. I shouldn’t have to purchase your shakes separately OR go to the grocery store to purchase “snacks”. Everything should be included. This is part of why I cancelled my Max Up program.

2. If all of your advertising and marketing states that coaching is included -it should be included! During my one and only coach call, my “coach” informed me that at I am not eligible for coaching because I have chosen to have my food auto shipped. WHAT???? She said that the coaching sessions are meant to help you choose your foods and if I’m just getting what is on the weekly menu, I don’t need a coach. Basically if I can choose my own food I am on my own. Um….no. That means I would need the coaching MORE! This was the #1 reason why I discontinued the Max Up program.

3. I decided to switch to a breakfast and lunch only program. Of course, since I was downgrading my program , the website wouldn’t let me. I had to set up a whole new account using a different email. Not user friendly.

So my final thought are – the food program works. The upselling and poor experience during my coaching call were a big turn off. I will post more once my new breakfast/lunch order arrives.

Thanks for reading.

Jenny Craig Day 3 dinner and Day 4 breakfast

Last night I just was not in the mood for The Jenny Craig food that was assigned for dinner, so I thought it was a good time to experiment. I ordered 3 chicken tacos in hard shells – No CHEESE and extra salsa from Chipotle. I also had a watermelon mint mojito. How would this affect the scale in the morning??? Up .2 pounds. Totally worth it.

Back on track this morning. I didn’t get a photo because I overslept (darned mojito). breakfast was egg, cheese, and turkey sausage burrito. It was ok.

Smell/taste: C/C. Serving size:B. Ease: A

See you at lunch!

Jenny Craig Day 3 Lunch

I had a 1/4 C of mixed nuts at 11am. They were delicious

Today’s lunch is the Chicken Ranch Melt. It is quite tasty. The chicken chunks are good. I’m very picky about my frozen food chicken. I can’t stand rubbery chicken, which is usually in frozen meals. This does not have that. The cheddar ranch spread is nice. All in all, I am happy with today’s food.

Smell/taste: A/A, Serving size: B+, Ease: A+

I’m looking forward to lasagna for dinner tonight.

Thanks for reading.

Good morning! Day 3 on Jenny Craig

So, I’m down another half pound. The Jenny Craig app says that is a total of 4.9 pounds since starting on Monday. I started trying to eat healthier on 1/15/22 and have lost a total of 9.5 pounds. So, my portion control and emphasis on vegetables has been working. Yay me!

This morning’s breakfast is a Jenny Craig chocolate muffin. It is supposed to be paired with a Jenny Craig shake but they are not included in the $150+ meals. So I made my own smoothie.

Chocolate muffin

One thing I have noticed is my joint inflammation has improved greatly. This is probably a combination of losing weight and eating less of the foods that cause inflammation. I’m happy.

See you at lunch time!

Thanks for reading!

Blame in on the…

In July 2019, I bared my soul and admitted, not only my weight but that the doctor told me I had to do something about it.

I did. Joined Weight Watchers online, right after I got home from the doctors appointment. I was actually doing very well. Blood pressure down. Lost 18 pounds. I was moving more and eating healthier.

Then came Covid-19.

I am not putting all the blame on Covid though. I am fully accepting my contributions to my backslide. However, I lay about 49% of the blame on this stupid “new normal”.

Since I don’t have the best immune system, I asked put in for a work from home assignment – but only if someone with more of a reason to stay home (small children, elderly parents living with them, immune compromised themself or a family member at home.). I was given the work at home assignment to help another department handle calls from people who needed financial assistance or were looking for information. While I am grateful for the chance to stay home and healthy, I was now tethered to a computer answering calls 8 hours a day. The ringer on the laptop didn’t work, so I actually had to sit, with headphones on, waiting for a call to come in. So, what did I do – I snacked because I was bored. On top of snacking, I literally sat for 8 hours. Sitting and snacking for 8 hours. In my regular job, I would be on my feet most of the day attending to the needs of the patrons at the library. So….you got it…the weight piled on.

On top of all of the snacking and sitting, I was also an emotional wreck. My visit to my elderly (sorry Mom and Dad – I don’t think of you as elderly. When I close my eyes I see you in your 40s still.) parents was cancelled due to the pandemic. Our other mini vacation to the Flower and Garden show at Epcot in Orlando was also a victim of the pandemic. To make matters worse during this terrible 2020 shit show, we had two relatives die without us being able to celebrate their lives at a funeral or memorial service.

Then, we discovered Door Dash. Now I didn’t have to shop, prep, or cook everyday. We just ordered our food – already cooked – to be delivered. Bad find. That food is NOT healthy. Chilis, Chik-fil-A, Outback Steakhouse, Carrabbas, Metro Diner, Wendy’s, Plaza de Mexico, Buffalo Wings and Rings…all so delicious and so NOT healthy. While it helped to deal with the changing situation of food shortages and also put funneled some money into our local eateries, more pounds packed on.

About two months into working from home, I decided that, in order to stop snacking constantly, I needed to find something to keep my hands occupied. CRAFTS to the rescue.

I painted, I drew, I colored, I sewed, I taught myself to crochet. I spent my time looking for something new to learn. I started to learn Spanish. Being distracted from stress eating, I stopped gaining but didn’t lose any weight. In order to do that, I would have to start moving more.

Fast forward to July 8, 2020. My “triumphant” return to my regular job at the library. After sitting every day for three months, I could barely keep up. Between the extra weight, the lack of exercise while working from home, and the stress of being back out in the germs – I thought I was going to have to quit my job because I couldn’t keep up. I would go home and cry because I was in so much pain. It took me almost two months before I was able to keep up with my job again.

Well, I had my four month follow up with my doctor this past Friday. While it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, it was not good news. After ballooning up to 321 lbs (oh I have a hard time admitting to that in writing but I’m doing it.) I made the commitment to restart Weight Watchers and get to feeling better. At my doctors appointment, I weighed in at 317.6. By some miracle, I was only up a pound from my previous appointment.

After a long discussion about next steps, the doctor agreed to give me 3 months to make progress in my weight loss. I feel terrible, which is a great motivator. Healthy eating and food prep starts today. I did well enough on Saturday and Sunday to actually lose a pound, so the journey has begun….again.

Please, say prayers, think good thoughts, send encouragement, share helpful tips/recipes and exercises you have tried. I need all the help I can get. Each Monday morning, I weigh in. To keep my honest, the doctor asked me to email him my Monday weight.

So on with my journey….