Share A Spoon ~ Seminary Muffins

Think Tank Momma
It's been forever and a day since I posted here! And I am changing that as of now!! I am the lucky gal who got to pick the theme for this weeks Share A Spoon. And since I posted an extremely fattening recipe on my blog I thought I would post a yummy but healthy recipe over here!

I got this recpe from awhile ago. It's really yummy and good for you! Even my kids like it. I just don't tell them it's healthy.

Seminary Muffins

1 egg
1 1/3 cups mashed ripe banana
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup quick cooking oats
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease one 12 cup muffin pan.
2.In a large bowl, combine egg, banana, brown sugar, applesauce and vanilla. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
3.Gently stir flour mixture and oatmeal into banana mixture. Fold in chocolate chips and walnuts. Pour batter into prepared muffin cups.
4.Bake in preheated oven or 15 to 20 minutes, or until light brown. Remove muffins from pan and place on a wire rack to let cool before serving.

Calories - 183 per muffin
Fat - 3.2g

Hope you like them!


Getting Motivated to Make a Difference - In Yourself

I've been called a commitment-phobe more than once in my life.  Once I set mind mind to something, I frequently fail to follow through.  In January, I made a commitment to myself to lose 30 pounds.  May came along and I had gained 5. 

While I was disappointed, I realize that the weight isn't just going to come off all by itself.  With renewed vigor, I committed to losing that extra 5 as well as the original 30.  So far, I have lost the extra 5, but the original 30 aren't budging.

I want so badly to make changes in myself that lead to a healthier lifestyle.  In turn, I know these changes will lead to weight loss.  If I want it so badly, why can't I break the old habits and make the change.  Daily, I look at the parts of me I consider flawed and think, "I really need to start working out again.  Tomorrow.  Tomorrow I will start working out again." Then tomorrow comes and I find an excuse to put my resolution off yet another day.

So what is my problem?  Where has my motivation gone?  I find excuses around every turn.  The drive to the gym is too long.  I can't wake up that early. I have too much housework to do (sadly, that doesn't get done either).  My routine is out of whack, it will get better when the kids go back to school. 

Do you find yourself in the same rutt?  How does one move past?  What can be done to put the healthy living train back on track?

Greek Tomato and Cucumber Salad

Think Tank Momma

It's that time again.  This week's theme is SALADS.  Perfect for all you LIBers!  So definitely go check out some of the links over there at my main blog!

Here is a QUICK, LIGHT and SATISFYING summer salad for you.


3-4 medium vine ripe tomatoes (If you find the little pear shaped grape tomatoes looking lovely at the market then by all means use those red and yellow are amazing this time of year)
1 large Seedless cucumber
1 cup 1/3 less fat feta cheese
1 small red onion sliced thinly
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh oregano

Cut the tomatoes into large chucks.  (If you use the grape tomatoes just half them.)  Dice the cucumber and add both to a large bowl.  If you're like me the red onion can be a little overwhelming sometimes.  After you thinly slice it, soak it in some ice water for 5-10 minutes and some of the bite will be left behind.  Dry the onions and add the the tomato/cucumber mixture.  In a small bowl whisk the olive oil and vinegar.  Pour over the other ingredients.  Add cheese and oregano and toss the salad.  Allow the salad to chill in the fridge for 30 minutes or so while the flavors marry together!  You can top with a bit of fresh mint or Italian Flat Leaf Parsley for a little flavor if you like.


Stuffed Peppers

Earlier this week I shared my weekly dinner plan with you. One of the recipes was Stuffed Peppers with Bulgur. I made those at the beginning of the week and they turned out faaaaaabulous!

I thought I would share my photo and relink the recipe because it's Share a Spoon time and today's theme is Stuff It!!

I posted my recipe on the Weight Watchers Site: Stuffed Peppers with Bulgur

Bulgur is a form of whole wheat that has been cleaned, cooked, dried, and ground. It can be found in most grocery stores in the baking isle. It is hearty, easy to cook and blends nicely with ground beef dishes. I love to sneak bulgur into many of my kids favorite meals like tacos, sloppy joe's and meatloaf because they can't tell it's in there! Made entirely from whole grain wheat it is loaded with fiber and nutrition! If you have a health food store near you, you can buy it in bulk and save on cost. Pound for pound it is much cheaper than lean ground beef which helps keep you trim and healthy and your wallet nice and plump!

For more great Stuff It recipes hop on by Think Tank Mama's place and stuff it!

Think Tank Momma

Mmmm Mmmm Good!

Hello Bitches!! Tamara here once again! I have been a cooking fool this week! Earlier I posted my weekly dinner menu and I wanted to update you on the recipes I have made.

I have to say that I am not working with Weight Watchers in any way. They are not aware that I am blogging about them here. I wanted to get that out of the way in case some of ya thought I was pitching for them. I genuinely love their program and it has worked in the past for me which is why I chose to jump on board with them again years later.

What I love most about Weight Watchers Online is that you use regular food. No prepackaged junk. They have their own line of products now, but honestly, I don't buy into them because a lot of the dessert foods have hydrogenated oils and junk in them so even though they are low fat and calories they are not exactly the best food choice.

I have found that replacing many of my carbs with veggies helps me feel full. I eat a ton of veggies now. I love sprinkling a little lemon pepper and spray butter on them.

I also eat a fudge bar when I want something sweet and that helps keep my portion size in check. Fudge bars are only 1.5 points so they don't set me back at all!

Last night I made the Roast Pork Tenderloin with Zucchini Alfredo and I have to admit I was impressed! Now, it is not at all like the real thing, but I think it tasted fantastic! Using a potato peeler, you shave the zucchini lengthwise to make the "noodles" and you saute them with white wine, mushrooms, seasoning and fat free half and half. I used panko crumbs instead of bread crumbs (they don't have hydrogenated oils like regular bread crumbs do) on the pork tenderloin. I also seasoned it up quite a bit because I love how herbs just make food pop! Also, lemon juice brings out a tangy flavor and is a great replacement for salt.

On a side note, I was not aware of fat free creamer before making this, and I love my coffee in the morning, but I was using coffee mate creamer which is just AWFUL for you. I could not find a way to lighten my coffee. The liquid form is full of calories and fat and the powder form, the first ingredient is hydrogenated oil! So this week I have been using the fat free creamer and a sugar free caramel flavored coffee syrup and WOW talk about a great cup of coffee without the guilt! I am excited about my find!

Ok so back to dinner last night. It was fabulous, my whole family loved it. I will be making this again! The only changes I made was using panko crumbs and extra herbs for the pork tenderloin, and spritzing lemon juice on the zucchini and adding a touch of shredded romano cheese to both.

I paired this up with baked apples. I wanted something that would go great with pork and I had a bag of apples so I chopped and skinned about 10 gala apples. I sprayed a casserole dish with cooking spray and placed the apples inside. I added about 2 oz of raisins, a good dash of pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves all in one handy container!) I used smart balance buttery spray and gave the apples a good coating. I added 2 heaping tbsp of brown sugar and covered the dish with foil. I baked it for approx 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

They came out so yummy! Perfectly paired with dinner! The kids scarfed 'em down! I hate watching produce go bad and this was a great way to use up those extra apples!

So my dinner calculated up to 6 points and that includes my baked apples!

Tomorrow is "Stuff It" day for Think Tank Mama's Share a Spoon so I'll post my pics and update on my Stuffed Peppers with Bulgur recipe I made earlier!

Have a great Hump Day!!

WW Update and My Dinner Menu

I just logged my weight today and I am down 4 lbs in a week!

I survived my first week although I squeezed every single point I could out of my allowance!

I wanted to share my weekly dinner menu with you, in case you want to try some of the recipes out.

Tonight I am making Stuffed Bell Peppers.

It is my recipe and I just added it to my plan manager so there are no photos but you can check out the link:

Stuffed Bell Peppers with Bulgur 7 points

Tuesday: Chicken Caesar Pita and Broccoli Cheese Soup 6 points

Wednesday: Turkey Burgers with Gorganzola Cheese and Sweet Potato Fries (I haven't posted the recipe yet but I am using frozen lean turkey patties, adding a bit of cheese, wrapping them in lettuce (no bun) and serving with homemade baked sweet potato fries.

Thursday: Roast Pork Tenderloin with Zucchini Alfredo 4 points

Friday: Beef Blue Cheese Quesadillas with black beans 5 points

I'll take photos and review these recipes throughout the week!

Share a Straw - Sangria Blanca

Think Tank Momma

LIBer's!  It's Share a Straw over at the Tank today, so I thought I would share over here as well.  I have some tips I have dug up for you all too.  Seriously, there is no quicker way to TANK a diet than to insert alcohol.  Well hell, you insert alcohol and it can do in friendships, reputations, dignity and definitely a diet.

Alcohol is a dirty little whore who can lower your blood sugar to make you feel hungry.  It lowers your inhibitions so you think "I need just one more."  It dehydrates your body which makes you think you need to drink more.  And last but not least, it will cause you to eat without thought because that resolve you had about sticking to your diet is a distant thought and the buzzing call of the social butterfly has bitten your diet squarely in the ass.

Oh...those butterflies.  So pretty.  Just like all those fruity cocktails the bartender is mixing up.  BEWARE of mixed drinks bitches!  They have lots of juice, and sugary mixes, and calories galore!  Many of them have more calories than a dessert!  NOT. EVEN. KIDDING.  Mixologists add calories in the details of their craft.  A sugared rim, a chocolate martini with all the pretty drizzles of chocolate and graham cracker rimmed glass and oh it looks so good?  438 calories! <---doesn't look so good in numbers huh?  The giant Frozen Mudslide at TGIFriday's has 1100 CALORIES!  OH MY HELL!  There goes an entire day's calories.

However, there are many things you can do to avoid those drinks, and still enjoy a cocktail if that is your prerogative.  When attending a party, or going out with the girls, or dining out, you need to have a "GAME PLAN".  Determine what you plan to drink before going out.  Make allowances for those extra calories in your day.  Always drink lots of water that day.  Eat before you go to a bar or happy hour so you are less inclined to dive into that food.  Wine and light beers for the most part are a low-cal option.  There is a common misconception that light beer has less alcohol, meaning you have to drink more.  Not so.  Light beer has exact same alcohol content.  Single servings of light liquors such as vodka, gin and light rum with a splash of fresh fruit juice and tonic or sparkling water are also low-cal options.

If you must have a high calorie "dessert" type drink, then make it dessert.  Cut back on your meal and have an indulgence.  But only have one.

For a nice at home low-calorie option try this White Sangria or Sangria Blanco

1 Bottle Barefoot Pinot Grigio
2 oranges sliced
1 lemon sliced
1 cup fresh or frozen peaches sliced
1 cup of Brandy

In a large picture combine all the ingredients and refrigerate for a couple of hours.  If you enjoy some bubbles in your drink add a bit of sparkling water or club soda in glass.

Servings = 6  125 calories per serving

Holly over at 504 Main posted a Light Mojito recipe for you rum lovers today as well.  Go check it out.

Live It

I'm excited that some of my Bitches are hopping on the WW Train with me! Today is day two and I have to say it has been....restraining. That is the only word I can use to describe this. Had I not paid for this service I can honestly say I'd be pigging out at this point.

Yesterday I ordered a Spicy Italian Sub and thought if I omitted the mayo and the oil I was being a good girl. When I went to log the points I was horrified to see that I had used HALF my daily points on this one item!

Lesson learned. Never assume. Unless it's a veggie that is raw, or a condiment there will always be POINTS involved!

Like a baby learning to walk...I am finding the right balance and sometimes teetering over the edge. I will fall, but I will pick myself up and keep going.

One thing I KNOW about Weight Watchers is I will see results. The first two weeks are the hardest and I can't put enough emphasis on that word...HARDEST.

I'm like an addict. Fidgety, chewing on my nails. Good thing I have gum. It seems to calm my nerves a little.

Who knew food had such an affect on me?

Anyway, I am keeping a blog at Weight Watchers to document my progress. Not that I don't have enough on my plate...well wait..I don't have enough on my plate...what were we talking about again?

Where the hell is my gum?!?

Cheapskate Mom Joins Weight Watchers

I've had it, ladies. I am tired of my muffin top and fretting over what to wear each day. I am a cheap mutha but I also know a good thing when I've tried it and I am entering round two with Weight Watchers online.

Today is my first day and already I have been hit with obstacles. A Hershey's bar in the freezer. Marshmallows in the cupboard and caramels on the counter. Normally I would succomb to their sweet calls and have a taste here and there for breakfast but because I am committing myself to being successful on WW I have turned down all that junk. A huge motivational tool for me is that I am paying for this service so I don't want to fail and let my dollars go down the drain.

For those of you wanting to know, I paid $54.85 for 3 months on the Weight Watchers online program. Right now when you register for the 3 months up front, they waive the sign up fee which is normally $29.95. This is good thru August 5th. The monthly rate is $17.95 per month which honestly is not bad at all considering you can spend that much on coffee in a week!

I like WW Online because it has all the tools I need to be successful without the meetings, which I am sure help some people but I would be a bit embarrassed to go. The last time I was on WW I lost almost 25 lbs. I only quit when I got pregnant with my youngest. Of course being pregnant and all, I allowed my cravings to get the better of me.

So here I am, my youngest is now 2 and I am watching the scale creep back up to that weight I was when I joined WW before. I had told myself I would never allow that to happen. I have been working out and trying to make better choices but I am not at all disciplined when it comes to portion control.

For my height and weight (5'9 157 lbs) I am allotted 23 Flex Points per day. I am not sure of exact calculations but they base the points value by combining the calories, fat and fiber in the items you are eating.

It also helps me lose weight because I have to pause before I eat long enough to find out how many points I am using up. I'm usually an impulsive eater so this helps me take the time to make wiser choices.

So for the next few months, I'll be sharing my experiences on the WW program as well as recipes. Any Weight Watchers members out there? Comment me and let me know!

Now, onto a recipe I made for breakfast this morning. I found this one: Creamy Scrambled Eggs with Scallions and Tomatoes but I was only cooking for myself so I changed it up to my tastes while keeping the Points Value at 3.

These are my ingredients after changing:

1 item(s) egg
1 Tbsp scallion(s)
1/8 tsp table salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1 oz fat-free cream cheese
1 Tbsp 1% low-fat milk
1 oz mushroom(s)

I added the mushrooms because I need more substance to my meal and I changed the cream cheese from light to fat free. I did not have egg whites on hand but I highly recommend using them because they are less Points value and you get more!

Here is how they turned out:

Oh and this is a salad plate so this is what the portion size looks like:

I thought the eggs tasted good. I was tempted to add some wheat toast but I gave it a whirl without those extra carbs and I have to admit after pairing this with my cuppa coffee I am pretty satisfied.

I set my goal at 25 lbs to lose in 3 months. I know that is a pretty high bar but I love a good challenge. Honestly I would be thrilled to lose 15 lbs but I haven't been at 135 lbs since before having my 1st son! Since I am done having babies I figure why not go back to prepreprebaby weight?!

So fellow it or not, I'm gonna have lots of tips and goodies for you over the next few months!

Share a Spoon - Skinny Dippin'

Think Tank Momma

One of the hardest things about a change in lifestyle is craving the things we used to love.  You can't deprive yourself.  I have said that time and time again and it's true!  Today over at Think Tank Momma we are doing Share a Spoon.  Many of the recipes linked there are not exactly "light".  Today's theme though is Party Pleezers and Appeteezers.  The death of the diet has been attributed to many a party!  We do so well, and stick with it, and then BLAM!  There is a party and we just mean to have a few bites. 

Before you know it, you have been GRAZING the whole party.  NOT GOOD.  So, here are a few tips.  Eat before you go to the party, or before your guests arrive.  When you are full, those tempting items aren't as appetizing.  Look for the fruit and veggie tray.  Hummus is also a lower fat option.  Where alcoholic beverages are concerned, light liquors with diet soda or a glass of wine.  Stay away from fruity drinks.  They are laden with sugar and juices to make them taste good.  MUCHO CALORIES!  Alternate a glass of water or diet soda in between consuming alcoholic beverages.

So, on to the recipe.  I love ranch and blue cheese.  LOVE IT!  A great ranch dip and some Ruffles?  Oh yeah baby!  So, I worked on one until I found something that is calorie friendly and delivers BIG on flavor so I don't feel like I am eating lowfat no flavor Ranch.

2 pkg of Ranch Buttermilk Recipe
16 oz Fat Free Sour Cream
1 cup Light Mayo
1 cup Gorganzola crumbles (I use the lower fat cheese option)
2-3 tablespoons heavy cream

Mix sour cream and mayo in large bowl until smooth.  Add the cream and mix well.  I add the cream to give the dip a silky rich texture, but by all means, if you want to leave it out feel free to cut those calories. Add in the Ranch packets and mix until completely incorporated.  Stir in cheese crumbles.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.

I replace the chips with sliced cucumbers.

This dip is wonderful as an accompaniment to baked buffalo wings.  It pairs well with all raw vegetables for a veggie tray.  My boys love it with baby carrots!  BDC eats it with sliced red and yellow bell peppers.  It's even calorie friendly enough to have a few light Ruffles with, to thwart that potato chip craving.  ALL THINGS IN MODERATION!

What's working for you?

Soooo I've been busting my butt at the gym for the past oh maybe 8 weeks and I got nothing to show for it. Well scratch that, I'm actually 4 lbs heavier then when I started!

Back in the day all I had to do was think about working out and I'd lose weight! I'd sit all day at my desk eating gummy bears and yogurt raisins because the gummy bears were "fat free" and the yogurt raisins were "health food" and the weight would fly off. Oh how dumb I was, but with stupidity came great metabolism...something that apparently has been lost for some time now.

I think I am getting old. Perhaps on the cusp of menopausal? I'm creeping towards mid 30's so that may have something to do with it. Perhaps it's because I attack anything sugar the moment I see it? Or maybe it's because I spend over half my downtime on my ass in front of the computer...I don't know.

What I do know is that I do not want to keep gaining weight.

My weakness is sugar. I love junk food. I just ate 8 twizzlers and 2 marshmallows typing this post. I know it's easy to say stop or put it away but I guess I'm a little more needy than that.

So I am turning to you, my bitches. What is working for you? How do you fight off those nasty cravings? Is it possible to co-exist with junk in the house? (I have kids and it's hard to totally get rid of these foods)

What is your weakness and how are you battling it?

I can't wait to hear your ideas!

Cluckity Cluck Cluck Cluck

Bach, Bach.....CHICKEN!  I love Chicken.  Like seriously, I could eat chicken every single day and never get tired of it.  I know most people aren't that way, and that people get tired of the same ol' same ol'.  But here's the thing, you could eat chicken everyday and never have the same dish twice.  It is the most versatile meat.  I know lots of you out there don't like the white meat because it dries out, blah, blah, blah. 

It only dries out if you cook it too long.  I thought I would share some tips and a quick recipe with you today bitches!  I marinate my chicken quite often.  One of my favorites and my family's too, is Italian Dressing.  You just take whatever your favorite Italian Dressing (there are some really great lowfat or fat free variations out there now) is, and enough chicken breasts to feed your family.  Take a large Ziploc plastic bag.  Add your boneless skinless chicken, your dressing and put it in the fridge.  Easy right?

I bake chicken this way, grill it, broil it, and I have even sauteed it in a skillet.  It's fantastic regardless of how you choose to cook it.  Cook this chicken anyway you want.  Then add the best topper ever.


3-4 tomatoes seeded and chopped
1 clove of garlic grated
3-4 Tablespoons of FRESH basil julienned
About 2 Tablespoons of olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper
About a cup of shredded Asiago Cheese (depending on how many breasts you have)

In a large bowl mix your tomatoes.  (To seed them, remove the top and bottom of the tomato.  Over the garbage can, sink or another bowl, squeeze the juice and seeds from the tomato.)  Roll your basil bunches together after removing the stems and slice very thin.  Add to bowl.  Grate one large fresh garlic clove over the mixture.  Add a pinch of salt and pepper.  Top with olive oil.  Stir mixture well. 

Top your cooked chicken with the tomato mixture and place in the oven on 400 degrees  for 4-5 minutes.  Just long enough to warm the tomato mixture through.  Remove from oven and top with the Asiago Cheese.
Voila!  Best chicken ever!

 (Image from Google images.  Yours should have more Cheese.)

Share A Spoon: Pizza Pasta

This week's Share A Spoon theme is casseroles and you know I love a good challenge so I found a great comforting casserole recipe and kept it tasty and healthy!

Is it pizza or is it pasta? It's BOTH!! I know what you are thinking...Girrrrl this is NOT healthy! *neckroll*double snap

Don't worry, my bitches! I've trimmed the fat from this dish so we can have our pizza and our pasta too!

By replacing traditional pepperoni with the turkey variety this cuts the fat down from 13 grams per serving to 4 grams per serving! It also cuts the calories in half! I can vouch that turkey pepperoni tastes just as good (even better in my opinion) as regular pepperoni! Using whole grain pasta adds lots of fiber to your meal. I use the Barilla whole grain spaghetti noodles and there are 6 grams of fiber per serving!

Portion control is key. Use your fist as a guide (get your mind out of the gutter!) Your portion should be around the same size as your fist.

Serve this with a salad or some steamed zucchini and yellow squash.


1 pkg whole grain spaghetti (approx 14 oz)
1 jar of spaghetti sauce (I like to use the cheap Hunts cans-Four Cheese)
1 can of Italian Diced Tomatoes
1 8 oz package of Italian Shredded cheese
1/2 package of Turkey Pepperoni
1 small can sliced olives (or veggies of your choice)
Italian Seasoning (to taste)
Garlic Powder (to taste)
1 tsp Fennel Seed (optional)


Prepare a casserole dish with cooking spray and preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare pasta as directed on package

In a saucepan combine spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, italian seasoning, garlic powder, and fennel (if you like this spice, it is also used in Italian sausage it adds a distinct flavor so make sure you like it!) simmer over low heat stirring every few minutes.

Drain pasta and add to casserole dish.
Add sauce to casserole dish (no need to stir)
Sprinkle shredded cheese evenly over the top
Add pepperoni and veggie toppings of your choice (black olives are pictured above)
sprinkle with Italian seasoning

Bake in oven approx 30 minutes or until top is golden and bubbly.

Do you have a great casserole recipe to share? Well then join in on the fun over at Think Tank Mama's place!!

Spinach Salad w/Vinaigrette

I love salads.  Love them.  The problem I used to have was I would go out to eat and order a salad and think this is amazing and then get home and try to make one and it wouldn't be as good.  You know why?  One word!  DRESSING!  The dressings at restaurants are amazing!  My favorite?  Fresh vinaigrette.

Never fear my fellow bitches!  I am here to tell you, you CAN do it at home.  What's more?  It's EASY PEASY!

I made a spinach salad on Father's Day and it was amazing.  I didn't take pictures for you but I have some pictures here I found on Google images to help give you the idea!  *wink*

Here's what you'll need:

1 Bag Baby Spinach washed and dried
1 Large Granny Smith Apple Sliced thinly (I leave the skin on)
2 Slices of Bacon crumbled (turkey bacon works fine)
1/2 cup toasted pecans
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Handful of shaved Parmesan

Dressing Ingredients:
1 shallot minced finely
1 clove garlic minced finely
3-4 Tablespoons Red Wine vinegar
1 tsp. dijon or brown mustard
1-2 tsp. honey
salt n pepper to taste
1 tablespoon of fresh chopped thyme and tarragon
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (or less, just need enough to emulsify the dressing)

I make the dressing first.  In a large bowl that you can toss the salad in mince a shallot.  Grate in a clove of garlic.  (I use a fine grater, but you can use a garlic press, or mince the garlic finely and rub salt and the flat edge of your knife to make the garlic soft and paste like.)  Add a pinch of salt and pepper.  Add 3-4 Tablespoons of red wine vinegar.  Let those ingredients sit for about 15 minutes.  The garlic and shallot will flavor the vinegar.  Add a teaspoon of dijon or brown mustard.  (Trust me, even if you don't like mustard it won't taste like mustard.  If you don't trust me leave it out.)  Next chop about a tablespoon of fresh thyme and tarragon and add to the bowl.  Add 2 teaspoons of honey.  Whisk everything together.  Drizzle in about 1/4 cup of olive oil while whisking the mixture.  This vinaigrette is AMAZING.

Add all the salad ingredients into the bowl on top of the dressing except the parmesan.  Toss the salad making sure to coat all the spinach with the dressing.  Add the cheese and serve.  


Bang! Bang! Boring Tuna is Dead.

Ask any body builder and they will tell you they consume a lot of tuna. Tuna is one of those power foods. It's loaded with Omega 3's and protein. Tuna is rich in important nutrients including selenium, magnesium, as well as potassium. Tuna has an assortment of B vitamins including niacin, B1 and B6. ALL of these nutrients have been known to help elevate mood as well as your health!

Some people love tuna while others can't stand it. I personally don't like the texture of mushy tuna sandwiches. Mayo is not the best for you when you are trying to live a healthy lifestyle but with these tips to help you perk up your tuna, you may just find yourself craving a tuna sandwich again!

Think outside the can.

Personally, I prefer alacore tuna. Mainly because the reddish scaley looking meat in regular tuna grosses me out. I am very picky when it comes to choosing tuna. It must be packed in water. It must be albacore. Of course it must be dolphin safe.

Beyond Pickles and Mayo.

Instead of Mayo try using greek or plain yogurt. You can also try fat free sour cream, this option makes it more creamy.

Instead of pickles try using green olives or sliced cucumbers spritzed with vinegar. Instead of white onions try chopped chives or red onion. Add some fresh basil and sliced tomatoes. There are countless ways to enjoy tuna!

Here is my latest tuna creation!

Cilantro Lime Tuna Sandwich

I had some leftover produce from when I made Tilapia with Mango Salsa, so I chopped those up and viola! A new recipe was born!

Serves 4


2 cans of albacore tuna packed in water
1 small bunch of fresh cilantro chopped
1/3 cup of sliced red onion
1/4 cup of chopped red pepper
1 lime juiced
1 jalapeno - cored and chopped
garlic powder to taste (1 used approx 1/2 tsp)
lemon pepper to taste (approx 1/2 tsp)
2 tbsp mayo (I used Kraft Mayo with Olive Oil sometimes I also use Kraft Free)
4 slices reduced fat mild cheddar (I like Sargento brand)
8 slices bread (I love me some rye with tuna!)


Drain tuna and place in bowl. Add cilantro, onion, red pepper, lime juice, jalapeno, garlic powder, lemon pepper and stir. Now add mayo. (You will see that adding mayo at the end of everything else helps keep it minimal. You don't need to load your tuna down with mayo, just a touch goes a long way!) Stir well.

For each slice of cheese cut it in half. Place each half on one slice of bread. Divide the tuna in four equal parts. Then spoon half a serving of tuna on one slice of bread and the remainder on the second slice of bread. Keep open and enjoy!

A big reason why I eat my tuna sandwich open is because I can enjoy more tuna this way. Usually I have two sandwiches because one does not fill me. I have learned if I pile on the tuna and enjoy the sandwich open faced, it gives me the sense of having two sandwiches without the added carbs, calories and fat of two more slices of bread! Because my tuna recipe is much healthier than tuna loaded with mayo, I can afford to have a little more tuna on my sandwich!

As I was making this recipe I came across some wasabi powder in my spice rack. I think next time I make tuna I am going to use mayo, soy sauce, red peppers, sliced leeks or green onion, and sprinkle it with wasabi powder.

Tuna - Asian style!
(Let's see how many weirdos I attract with that line!)

So how do you like to prepare tuna sandwiches?

I love hangin' with my Bitches but you can also find me chillin' at Mad Boastings of a Cheapskate Mom.

Share A Spoon: Pumpkin Spice Bars

Queen Bitch, Brandee over at Think Tank Mama has this fun weekly gathering where you can share recipes. It's called Share A Spoon and this week she is asking for dessert recipes.

I know this is a "Weight Loss" kind of place but that doesn't mean we should deprive ourselves!

Using healthy ingredients such as natural sugar and applesauce in place of oil, you can tweak any recipe to make it healthier! Portion control is the key to success!

Here is a great Pumpkin Bar Recipe! You can change it up to make it your own. Add bittersweet chocolate chips, or pecans. Omit the frosting for a healthier treat. Never follow a recipe to the letter - make it your own and have fun!

Pumpkin Bars With Maple Frosting


1 cup Egg Beaters (or 4 eggs)
1 cup Brown Sugar
2/3 cup Turbinado Sugar
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
15-ounce can pumpkin puree
2 cups unbleached flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Mix at medium speed, combine the eggs, sugars, applesauce and pumpkin until texture is light and well mixed. Stir together the flour, baking powder, spices, salt and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until the batter is smooth. Spread into a greased 13 by 10-inch baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until "toothpick check" by placing a toothpick in the center if it comes out clean the cake is done, if it comes out with goop on it then cook it a bit longer.

Let cool completely before you add frosting.

Maple Buttercream Frosting (naughty naughty but yummy!)


3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter
2 tsp maple extract
1/2 tsp ginger


Whisk together sugar and butter until well blended or use a mixer and mix on medium speed for approx 3 minutes.

Add maple extract and continue mix until light and fluffy. Sprinkle in ginger and stir well.

Spread over cooled pumpkin bars and garnish with a pinch of turbinado sugar to the top of each bar if desired.

Do you have a favorite recipe to share? If so please join in on the fun at The Tank!

Tilapia With Mango Salsa

This is the first time I am sharing a recipe with the Bitches so I hope you like it!

Tilapia with Mango Salsa

Tilapia is such a versatile fish. It's my favorite because it can be prepared in so many ways and it is super easy! I also like that it doesn't have a "fishy" taste to it.

Serves 6


6 Tilapia fillets
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp minced parsley
2 tsp old bay seasoning
2 cloves minced garlic
2 mangoes
2 jalapenos seeded and chopped
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 red bell pepper
1/2 red onion finely chopped
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 lime


Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, old bay seasoning, and garlic, in a bowl and pour into a resealable plastic bag. Add the tilapia fillets, shake to coat with the marinade, squeeze out excess air then seal the bag. Marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour, turning over bag halfway to coat the other side.

Preheat oven broiler.

Meanwhile, using a food processor (or good ol' elbow grease and a knife) chop the mango, jalepeno, cilantro, pepper, onion and combine in a bowl. Sprinkle with garlic powder and add lemon pepper. Cut lime in half and squeeze juice into bowl. Mix well and cool in fridge.

Remove the tilapia from the marinade. Discard the remaining marinade and place fillets into a prepared oven dish. Grill the fillets until the fish is no longer translucent in the center, and flakes easily with a fork.

When cooking is completed place the tilapia filet on a plate and top with mango salsa.

I served this meal for Father's Day and paired it with steamed asparagus and whole grain cilantro and black bean rice.

Try it! I promise you will love it!!

Come visit me over at Mad Boastings of a Cheapskate Mom!

I have a great giveaway going on right now, $100.00 to spend however you like at CSN Stores!

Hope to see you there!

The "F" word

When we make a lifestyle change, one of the things we miss is SWEETS. So, we replace those cravings with what? FRUIT!

Yes, the "F" word. What did you dirty rotten minded scoundrels think I meant? Get your filthy minds outta the gutter! Geez....this isn't my main blog!

The health benefits of eating fruit are amazing! Did you know that one of the BEST things about fruit, you know, other than it tastes amazing, is that they help reduce the skins aging process? I am so vain I don't want wrinkles. AND, I'm a chicken shit, so there isn't much chance I would dare go under the knife. Well, unless I was disfigured in an accident or mauled by a bear or something. SO....I will suck down those sweet fruits and all their anti-oxidants.

Fruits are low in calories and fats. They are a great source of fiber, simple sugars and vitamins which are important for you to optimize your overall health.

So I thought I would share a couple of quick fun recipes for FRUIT!

I love Waldorf Salad! Crunchy yummy goodness. If you don't like something in it, make a switch. There are no rules. We are adding things into our diets to help us make life long changes. This is not about just eating things to lose weight. If you do that, you will burn out and go right back to eating CRAP!


4 medium red delicious apples cored and chopped (I leave the skins on.)
3 stalks of celery chopped
1/2 c. light mayo (you can substitute plain yogurt)
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
1/2 cup plump raisins (you can substitute grapes)

Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl and refrigerate. Serve chilled. If you want this to keep longer and not have the apples turn, squeeze fresh lemon juice over the apples after chopping them.

Depending on whether you use yogurt or mayo, this recipe has roughly 150-180 calories per serving.

Another fav of mine is a fresh pineapple salad I make! I SUPER DUPER PUFFY HEART fresh pineapple.


2 cups chopped fresh pineapple
3 Tbsp sweetened flake coconut
1 cup seedless red grapes
1 cup drained mandarin orange segments
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1 Tbsp honey
1/2 cup Plain greek yogurt

In a small bowl mix the yogurt and honey. If you can't find Greek yogurt, you can substitute regular plain yogurt. Take a thick paper towel and put it in a strainer over a bowl. Pour the plain yogurt over the paper towel and let the juices drain out. It will be thick once the juices drain. It makes the yogurt thick and creamy and a little sweetened when you add the honey! Super yummy!

Mix the fruit, coconut and nuts in a large bowl and add the dressing. Serve chilled. 130 calories per serving

So...that's my "F" word! F-R-U-I-T

Do you have any yummy fruit quick fixes to share?

I feel pretty, Oh so pretty!

OH ME OH MY!  LOOK AT THESE NEW DIGGS!  Can you believe how super awesome our new site is?  I love it!  I feel inspired!

Our new admin, Tamara, or as I call her Cheesecake from Mad Boasting of a Cheapskate Mom and Cheapskate Designs gave us an overhaul here at LIB!  We have a new button.  GRAB IT!  Display it.  It links here instead of to my main blog!  If you are in the challenge, grab the button!

Also, our current Stick Bitch, that's our winner from Challenge Numero Uno, is starting a new weigh in meme.  If you would like to participate check out Amy over at Marvelous Mommy.  Some of you aren't comfortable posting your actual weights, and I completely understand that.  It's fine to continue to update me privately on your progress.  But, for those of you who feel sharing your digits motivates you, go join in Amy's Thursday weigh ins.  It motivated her, and SHE WON our last challenge!!  Woo Hoo!

I am currently stuck at 10 pounds down.  I will admit, I haven't been as vigilant as I should be.  We have had colds and graduation, and end of year, and I hear you all screaming, excuses!  EXCUSES!  Get back on the program!  I am!  I will.  

I will tell you that it is inspiring to put on your jeans and have to constantly pull them up because they are so loose!  What is motivating you?  Can you feel a difference in your clothes?  For me, the clothes make more difference than seeing those numbers come down on the bitch ass ho scale.

So, you might see some subtle changes in the next weeks on the site.  A little nip and tuck here and there.  But for the most past, we are live and in PRETTY COLOR.  

And real quick, leave me some requests for recipes.  What are you missing?  What do you crave that you would like some "light" recipes for.  I will search for, reinvent and share what I have with you.  Just let me know what you want!

~Zgirl out!

What's on your playlist?

Exercise and music go together like peanut butter and jelly!

A banging beat helps you get a bangin' bod!

So, what is the one song you absolutely MUST have on your playlist while working out?

Low Fat, Low Calorie, BIG FLAVOR Stir Fry

If you are anything like me, one of the first things you start to crave when you start a "life style change" is Chinese Food. When you go to one of the little fast food Chinese places the calorie intake for one meal can wipe out two days worth of fat grams and all of that days calories. But do not fear, you can get all of that flavor you crave and none of the guilt by making stir fry at home.

Also, if you have a Panda Express near you, they have some very lowfat, calorie friendly options.

Here's what you'll need:

2 chicken breasts or 12 oz. of top round sirloin steak
ground ginger (I use powdered spice for this, you can use fresh if you like)
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
3 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp Corn Starch
Beef or chicken stock depending on your choice of meat
1 onion
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 12-16 oz bag of frozen stir vegetables of your choice
Crushed red pepper flakes to taste (optional)

Directions: Slice the chicken or steak thinly on the bias against the grain. Liberally cover with ginger. Probably 3-4 Tablespoons. Add the soy sauce. Let marinate for 20 minutes. In a large skillet, heat to medium high and add olive oil to pan. Add marinated meat mixture. Let meat brown. Should take 5-7 minutes until cooked through. Add crushed red pepper flakes for a little spice. Add sliced onions and red peppers, stir well. Add the bag of frozen vegetables and cover. Reduce heat to medium-low and let the vegetables warm through. Mix the tablespoon of corn starch and 1 cup of beef/chicken stock. Add to the pot. Sauce will thicken quickly. Remove from heat and serve.

This is great over brown rice. If you have the calories to spare you can certainly use jasmine rice or chow mein noodles.

Without rice this has roughly 190 calories and 2.5 grams of fat. This serves my whole family. So basically 3 adult portions and 3 child portions.

Enjoy! Have a Happy Memorial Day Weekend.

Checking in, Progress updates

Hey there Bitches!  How are we doing?  Some of us are a couple weeks in, some of us just started last week.  I have about two weeks down.  I am working it hard ladies.  I am challenging a fellow blogger to a weight loss challenge on the side as well to raise money for a sick baby.  So this really is adding to my motivation.

I hate to lose (anything but weight) and so every time I think about picking up those cookies, or having something bad, I remind myself I have a purpose!  I can do this.  You can too!

I am still working with Cheesecake over at Mad Boastings of a Cheapskate Mom and Cheapskate Designs to revamp the site.  We both have gotten a little derailed due to the sudden and tragic loss of Daffy's sister last week.  Please remember to keep our resident diabetic admin in your hearts and prayers.

I am also working through all the emails in my in-box.  Ladies, I have not forsaken you I promise.  I fielded so many calls and updates to friends and fellow bloggers last week for Daffy that I just haven't had the time to respond to everyone yet.  I know who is in and I am working on getting the blog roll updated.  I still need starting weights from some of you.  If you haven't heard from me yet, I am making my way to you.

I am down a total of 9 lbs. this morning.  Let me know how you are doing.  What is working?  What isn't?

Check out this exercise tip post by Iva Messy.  Very good post that I asked to share with all you Bitches and Iva graciously agreed.

Leave your current loss(or gain) in the comments.  I will be back tomorrow with a heart healthy recipe.

Support Bitches!

Ladies, I have very sad news.  Many of you know one of our admins, The great Duckalicious aka Daffy.  Our resident diabetic.  Her sister is in grave condition right now.  Suffered a major stroke.  Had open brain surgery to remove a tumor.  She currently has no neurological function, and is on a ventilator.  

Please keep Daffy in your hearts and prayers.  

I have been supporting her this week during these dark hours.  I have most of your start weights already.  If I haven't gotten back to you I will as soon as possible.  Please bear with me as I help to hold up The Duck!

You can follow her updates here.  Please go show her some love and encouragement.

Also, I have started a recipe meme on my main site.  I will continue to post healthy recipes here in the coming weeks, but you can also find many healthy and fun recipes on Thursdays at Think Tank Momma.


Roll Call: Lose It Bitches Challenge Numero Dos

Alright bitches! Time to get our fat asses on the ball. I am sorry for the delay. If you follow my other blog you know, we have had the creepy crud at my house and even the baby was sick. It was awful! It's difficult to do much when you have a house full of kids hacking up lungs and such.

That is all behind us now. Fresh coat of antibacterial gel EVERYWHERE. Lots of Lysol later, and we are all healthy! Yeah, for disinfectants!

I need to do a roll call and see who is in. We will be putting up the new site design very soon. When we do, there will be a new button for everyone to proudly display!

I am very excited to get this underway. I will be a slave driver on this challenge. I have a side challenge going over on my main site to support a fellow blogger with a sick baby. Please feel free to check it out if you like.

This challenge runs from TODAY through August 31st. If you started at the beginning of May, you may count that weight loss because the rest of us have been slackers.
Are you in or are you out? I will contact you all individually for start weights. No need to post them here. If your email is not viewable and you have, leave me your address so I can contact you! I will be adding your URL to the blogroll if you are participating so make sure I can get back to you.

I will be posting a giveaway soon! You won't want to miss it! We are getting new digs. New buttons. More recipes. More support. Tell me what you want to see if you have ideas. If you want to guest post, let me know.

Leave it in the comments bitches! Ready! Set! GO! GO! GO!

Who will be our next LIB Stick Bitch?

Aaaaaannnnd the Stick Bitch is....

Let's review shall we?  Dual Mom half heartedly threw out a weight loss challenge.  I needed to lose some serious .lbs.  I took the challenge as a double dog dare, and threw down the gauntlet.  Dual Mom ran with it and actually accepted the challenge.  We discussed it and I told her I would have a button made for the challenge.  Then all of you started coming out of the woodwork joining in.  I saw that button everywhere.  I decided we needed a blog of our own for the challenge.  So I threw something together and asked my friends to help me by contributing recipes and exercise tips, and voila!  We had Lose It Bitches!

I have to tell you all, I am disappointed in myself for falling away from the challenge.  Regardless of my circumstances with the baby, I still could have gotten back on track, and I am committing to making serious changes for this next challenge.

So, I was amazed and inspired by all the participation out there.  Truly ladies, you all are inspiring.  We had over 100 followers inside a week!

There were several who came close to nabbing the top spot, but in the end, there was one lady who can call the title her own.  Committed to making lifestyle changes that helped her move her BMI into a category that isn't "overweight".  She had an overall weight loss of 10.02% of her total body weight.

Drumroll please.........

The Stick Bitch is..........

Everyone head over and give Amy a big round of applause!  

I will post details about our new challenge in the days to come.  We will start on Wednesday. So, take your pictures of your feet on those scales ladies!  You don't have to post them, but you have to send them to me!  :)

Please email me if you will be sending our winner a surprise.  We will coordinate via email!

Thanks to all those who participated in our healthy movement.  We will be right back in the challenge come Wednesday morning!  I have big announcements in store so check back Wednesday!



Alrighty, Bitches! Who is it going to be? I need your start and stop weights today.

Who is going to get the title of Stick Bitch? Who gets to PROUDLY display this button?

At the beginning of this challenge we all agreed to send the winner a little something as their reward for showing the rest of us up. Well, my gift will be the winner's choice of cook book from Williams-Sonoma.

There is a lot of exciting news friends! The winner, the gifts. We are getting a brand new look. Yep! The site is current under a "make over" from our new contributor extraordinaire Cheapskate Mom aka Cheesecake! It's so fabulous! I can't wait for you all to see it! I am working on a giveaway for you all! Super stoked about that! So, you see? LOADS of exciting things going on!

So check back tomorrow for the WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER and details for the next LIB challenge.

Spill in in the comments! Who is our STICK BITCH?

Who is going to be the LIB winner?

All good things must come to an end right? Well, this is certainly not the end. Just the beginning of an all NEW challenge. However, first?? We have to determine who is getting the award. The bragging rights. While many, and I mean MANY of us have fallen off the wagon, and not gotten right back on it, there have been some who have been inspiring. Posted regardless of ups and downs.

Since Skinny Bitch is apparently trademarked. We will be dubbing the WINNER WINNER WINNER with the title Stick Bitch. It's befitting of a Lose It Bitches challenge no?

So I need everyone who is still in it to win it to post starting weight, and total loss. If you aren't comfortable with posting starting weight that is fine. You can email it to me confidentially.

The challenge isn't complete until April 30th. You have until FRIDAY.

I will be posting details of the next challenge later this week. I have some exciting things lined up from our contributors. I will be working on updating the site with some better navigation so you can get to recipes and exercise tips easily.

If there is ANYTHING you would like to see here let me know. If you would like to guest post please send me an email.


Ain't Yo Momma"s Chicken Noodle Soup

Ain't Yo Momma's Chicken Noodle Soup


3 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts - cubed
1 cup chopped baby carrots
1 cup chopped celery
1 medium onion chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
1 cup red potatoes cubed
2-3 Tbsp. fresh parsley chopped
1.5 c whole wheat noodles
8 cups chicken broth (2 boxes of broth)
2 cups water
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Chop all vegetables and salt and pepper them. Set aside.

Heat a large heavy bottomed soup pot. Add the olive oil. Chop the raw chicken breast and add to pot. Brown the chicken until cooked through. Takes about 6-7 minutes. Add the veggies. Stir until the veggies start to soften. Takes about 5 minutes. Grate the garlic into the pot and stir. Add the chicken broth/stock and the water. Mix well and let simmer for about 15 minutes. Add noodles and chopped parsley. Soup is ready to serve when noodles are cooked through.

This recipe is quick, easy and tastes like it cooked ALL DAY.

Yields about 8 servings.

Calories per bowl....205!

Enjoy! This is my family's favorite!

Grape Salad

I found this picture on Google Images.
Mine looks a little different because I mix the sauce over the grapes.

Grape Salad:

3 Cups Red Seedless Grapes
3 Cups White Seedless Grapes
1 8oz block softened Philly Cream Cheese 1/3 Less Calories
1 Cup light sour cream
1/2 Cup Splenda sugar substitute
1/2 Cup chopped walnuts

Clean all the grapes and remove all stem pieces. Set aside.

Cream together softened cream cheese, sugar substitute and sour cream until smooth and creamy. Pour sauce over the grapes and mix well. Pour into a 13X9X2 glass dish and top with nuts. Refrigerate. Serves 12.

Calories per serving: 156

If you are anything like me, a sweet tooth can be your nemesis. It's mine! This salad is a sweet treat! Great for spring and summer refreshment. Enjoy!


My Exercise Playlist ~ Part 2

Working out can get boring. Especially when I spend a LOT of time on my elliptical. I also get tired of listening to the same old songs over and over and over. So I am constantly switching them up. I listen to an odd assortment of music. Part 1 to my Playlist is over at my blog if you want to see it. I hope you see a few songs that motivate you to get your butt up and moving!

  1. Justin Timberlake featuring JD Wayne Williams - Sexy Back

  2. Pink - This Is How It Goes Down

  3. 3OH!3 - Don't Trust Me

  4. Sean Kingston - Fire Burning

  5. Pitbull - I Know You Want Me

  6. Katy Perry - Waking Up In Vegas

  7. Trapt - Headstrong

  8. Britney Spears - 3

  9. Three 6 Mafia - Lolli Lolli

  10. Skillet - Awake And Alive

  11. Nickelback - Shakin' Hands

  12. Uncle Kracker - Hot Mess

  13. Simple Plan - Welcome To My Life

  14. Iyaz - Replay

  15. Train - Hey, Soul Sister

  16. Baby Bash featuring T-Pain - Cyclone

  17. Black Eyed Peas - Rock That Body

  18. Black Eyed Peas - Party All The Time

  19. Finger Eleven - Paralyzer

  20. Cobra Starship - Hot Mess

  21. Cobra Starship - Good Girls Go Bad

A lot of these songs are what I would call sexy songs. I like listening to songs that make me feel sexy when working out, cause that's what it's all about right? We're working our butts off so we can feel sexy inside and out! What songs inspire you to get sexy??

Pina Colada Cake

I got this recipe (and borrowed the picture) from Eat Better America. It is SO good, and oh so easy! I mean it only has 4 ingredients! How cool is that?

1 package (14 1/2 oz) angel food cake mix
1 can (8 oz) unsweetened crushed pineapple
8 oz fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed
1/2 cup (2 oz) toasted coconut

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray a 13x9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. In large bowl, stir together cake mix and pineapple. Pour into prepared baking dish.
3. Bake 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out almost clean. Cool completely on a rack.
4. Spread whipped topping over cake. Sprinkle with coconut. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

For nutritional info (and believe me you'll be impressed) please visit Eat Better America.

Mind Games

I can't believe how many people still stop me to ask how I got skinny.

The easy answer?

Eat healthy and exercise.

Do people really want to hear that?

Um, no. They don't.

You can actually see the disappointment on their faces.

Yet, that is what I did. I went from this -

To sorta kinda like this -

In less than a year.

By eating healthy and exercising.

Because I was focused. Very, very focused.

It's mind over matter in this weight loss struggle that you're in.

Half the battle is in your head.

Here are a few of the mind games I played with myself to keep my head in the weight loss war.

First I made myself a Motivation Poster. I cut out pictures of skinny chicks in bikinis, pictures of hotties in super cute jeans, pictures of myself skinny, and pictures of myself as a fattie. I pinned it to the wall right next to my elliptical. So that whenever I felt like giving up halfway through my workout I would look up at those super cute jeans on my poster and force myself to finish exercising.

I also posted a few extra bikini pics in the kitchen. One on the fridge, on the snack cupboard.... that way whenever I went into the kitchen I was reminded what my goal was. Sure, a few of my husbands friends thought it was odd that there were pictures of bikini clad girls all over the house.... but it worked for me! (And I'm sure it didn't bother them all that much.)

Then I bought myself some Motivational Jeans. I would wait until there were some cute ones on sale and then I would buy them 2 sizes smaller than what I was currently wearing. I would hang them at the very front of my closet where I would see them everyday. When the day came that those jeans actually fit......euphoric. And then when those jeans would actually get to where they were to big, A-mazing. There's no better motivation for me than buying new jeans.

When I overhauled my life I didn't have a blog. I didn't have a Twitter account either. All I had was my Facebook page and my MySpace page. Every morning I would update my status with "I'm going to workout today!", or "I'm going to make this super yummy healthy breakfast today!", or some other crap about being healthy and exercising. Just the simple fact of telling everyone I knew that I was going to workout, that I was going to eat healthy, that I had a goal of losing weight, kept me on the straight and narrow. If I told all my friends and family that I was going to workout, well then I better go workout! I didn't want to be a liar. I created my own Peer Pressure, and it worked!

Another tactic that I used against my ever struggling willpower - Keep in mind just how long you will have to workout to work off that piece of cake, or slice of pizza, or candy bar. Is the pizza really worth an extra 20 to 30 minutes on the elliptical? If it is - go for it! If not, maybe Lean Cuisine will have a better option for you. I know a lot of people don't like this 'game' of working out longer because you ate something full of fat and calories. You know who they are? People who are already skinny that's who. I like keeping track, that way I know exactly how long I need to workout and there are no surprises.

I hope some of these tips will work for you! It sure won't hurt to try!

Here's a link to a post I wrote awhile back with some other helpful tips.

Do you have any mind games that have been working for you? Please let me know in the comments! I look forward to learning what you guys have been doing.

~Stephanie at The Blue Zoo~

Sweat N Swap



Howdy Losers! How's it hanging? Are you hanging? It is awesomely motivating to see how many pounds are falling off you all. That HAS to feel good.

Are you getting bored with your workouts? Dragging your feet at popping in that DVD? Too predicable? That happens...sometimes we hit a plateau and need to switch things up to jump start ourselves again (or just buy a DVD we end up not liking).

I had an idea. I don't have all the details worked out yet but I thought I would run it by the LIB followers and see what you think about it. I'm wondering if anyone would be interested in doing a Sweat N that I mean exchange workout videos with other LIB followers. The only cost involved would be the shipping and really that would be minimal. Those small bubbly envelopes at WallyWorld are usually less than a dollar and the shipping of  said envelope with a DVD would surely be $2 or less, unless you're in Japan or something. So for a miniscule investment we could swap around our workout videos that we've become complacent with.

I'm leaning towards just starting a section in the side bar with emails of those who have videos they would like to trade. I'm not very technical so I'm not quite sure the best way to link the video holder up with the video wanter....I'm still hammering those ideas out. Since my brain is still suffering the effects of a failed Cootie shot (which means that I've been ill for about 12 days now), I thought it best to knock put some other heads together on this. Surely there are some smurt cookies out thar!

Whatcha think?


Stupid Idea?

Cool but not really practical??

Lay it on me - I can take it...I am a duck afterall...

Getting The Train Back On The Track

I know, you're all asking the same question.....what have you done for me lately? Absolutely nothing if posting frequency is any indication.

We're still here, life seems to be getting in the way. Stephanie's been off romping at Blissdom'10, That One Mom was ..... hey woman what have you been up to?!?! Daffy is dealing with sickness, Zgirl...well what can we say about Zgirl. She's had her life turned upside down in a totally awesome way. If you haven't heard her news, stop by her blog and wish her well. I...well I'm just lazy.

So choo choo. In order to get the train back on the track I'd like to do a 6 week check in. Can you believe we've been at this for six weeks?!?! It seems like years....kidding. I (and all the other beotches) want to know how your doing. So I want each of you to send me an email, tell me how much you've lost so far and your best moment to date in the LIB challenge. I know you could put it in the comments and I know you have been very diligent about posting your weekly updates (ahem... consider this a gentle kick in the butt for those that haven't been quite so diligent). I'm then going to do a post listing ALLLL our successes to date. I have a three day weekend coming up and need something to do, right?

I'll tell you mine right now. Up until last night I've been doing the whole walk for 2 minutes run for 2 minutes. I ran for 15 minutes straight last night. It was an incredible feeling. If we could bottle that feeling of accomplishment and sell it on ebay we'd all be rich.

Let's make this a bit fun shall we? I have a $20 Chapters card for whoever has lost the highest % of weight to date. No, I don't want pics of your scales to prove it. I'm going to take you at your word. Just know...if you lie to me...I'll know. Mothers have eyes in the back of their head ya know. To figure out your percent divide the pounds lost by your beginning weight. So if you weighed 200 pounds and you've lost 10 the answer will be 0.05 which is 5%. Mad math skillz...I know.

So hop to it! Email addy is dualmomatgmaildotcom (why do people write out there email addresses like that in blogland?)

One more thing, I'm incredibly proud of all of you. Four months ago I never thought it would be possible to be so proud of a bunch of people I've never "met". I'm proud of you for caring enough about yourselves to take on this challenge to get healthy. For caring so much about each other to offer an amazing level of support and encouragement to your fellow bloggers. I read the comments each of you leaves when someone posts an update, and it fills my heart knowing there are so many kind, strong, beautiful people in the world. For that I thank you.

So kuddos to you.


Fitness and Flexibility

We've all heard the drill, stretch before and after exercising. If you're anything like me, you generally don't listen to people that are smarter than you and know what they're talking about. Call it stubbornness, stupidity, laziness, whatever. When I was running on a regular basis, back in the day when I was a skinny bitch, I can count on one hand the number of times I actually stretched before a run. I would go balls out during the workout and then just want to drag my butt home before the sore muscles set in. BAD Dual Mom. Surprisingly enough I never did serious injury to myself. I was lucky. I'm a few years older and wiser now and I try to do a few stretches before each session at the gym, if nothing else I stretch out my hamstrings.

36% of your body mass is made up of skeletal muscle, the percentage is a bit higher for men. These muscles are what allow us to walk, run, run our mouth off, pick up our kids and hug them, drive our cars. Any motion, and non motion for that matter, involves the use of muscle. There are approximately 639 skeletal muscles in the human body.

Did you know that bears are the only mammals in the world that can go for prolonged periods of time (hibernation) without losing muscle mass and having their muscles atrophy? The rest of us....yeah use it or lose it as the saying goes. The layer of muscle inside a woman's uterus is the strongest muscle in the body. The heart obviously performs more work over an average life span than any other muscle in the body.

Ok, enough riveting facts about muscles. The point here is that our muscles are important and we seldom give credit where credit is due. Stretching before and after a workout is uber important. Taking a few minutes to stretch and warm up your muscles before beginning exercise releases a lubricating substance from the cartilage within the joints, which aids the fluid motion of muscles and also keeps bones from scraping against one another at connection points in the body. Lubricated and fluid moving muscles have more flexibility which reduces your chances of injuring them.

There are some great resources on the web that will list some basic stretches everyone should do, is one of my favorites. also offers some great basic stretches you can do before and after a workout. Both are reputable sites that know there stuff. As for the benefits of stretching, one of the best workouts I've had over the past five weeks is after a yoga class. It literally feels as though your body is fluid. If you have never tried a yoga class before, I strongly encourage you to check it out. Ensure it's a beginner class (advanced yoga scares the crap out of me) with an experienced instructor. You'll thank me for it later.