Food, mood etc.. where did August go?!

My first blog post in a month… a lot has happened!  Prob best to summarise…

  1. My boyfriend took me on a surprise weekend break for our 8 year anniversary.  We went to Nantes (France) – it was romantic and beautiful (I love Europe!)
  2. On the last night he proposed to me!
  3. We returned and immediately it was the start of the school holidays, and since we run an ice cream parlour this means we have been working really hard for the last month including every evening and restaurant shifts.
  4. We cancelled our plans to travel India this winter due to saving for the wedding (we decided to go to India for our honeymoon next winter instead!)
  5. We decided to book a week in Fuerteventura instead and I’m very excited!

So that pretty much brings you up to date! Lots of good things.  In terms of diet, honestly this last month my diet has been very poor.  I’ve been very short of time (working non-stop) and very tired, and somehow used that as an excuse to overeat.  It’s just too easy to eat ice cream and sweets after a busy afternoon in the shop surrounded by people buying treats!  It’s a bad excuse, I know.   I genuinely haven’t had time to run, and I’m well aware that when running isn’t happening for whatever reason, I just tend to eat more.  But I’m not worrying about it overly, because for this month of the year we have little time for anything except work, and we are now coming to the end of it (thank god!)  As soon as the school holidays finish, our shop will be quiet again, I will have time to run, cook properly and start planning our wedding!  And I’m so looking forward to it..  Hope everyone is enjoying their summer 🙂

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Recipe: Veggie Quesadillas

quesadillaLast night I made quesadillas.  For the first time.  You know, quesadillas!  No, I didn’t really know what they were either.  I have made and enjoyed fajitas for years, but, inspired by a blog I read yesterday, I decided to give these little babies a go.  Turns out they are super delicious, super easy and you can use up all your veggies and put whatever you like in them.  That’s right, you can make butternut squash and kidney bean quesadillas, mixed vegetable quesadillas, mock chicken and avocado quesadillas…  just put whatever you fancy in them!  I love a recipe that can be versatile as well as healthy and delicious.  And filling.  Boy a whole one was too much – I saved a slice (a quarter) for lunch today – tasted even better re-warmed!  You can make these clean by leaving out the cheese if you like, but I thought the cheese was well worth adding.

I used:

  • Veggies – butternut squash, red pepper, mushrooms, onions, sweetcorn, avocado
  • A few kidney beans/butter beans and pumpkin seeds
  • Some chopped tomatoes (1/2 a tin) or pasta sauce
  • Seasoning – I used some paprika and bbq seasoning
  • 2 wholewheat wraps (per quesadilla)
  • Grated cheddar (optional – I used small handful)

To make:

  1.  Saute/boil/fry veggies (however you like to do them) then stir in the chopped tomatoes or pasta sauce, seasoning and beans.  Mash any chunky veg (ie squash) a little if desired.  Set aside.
  2. Use some cooking spray or oil and get a frying pan medium/hot.  Fry one of your tortilla wraps for 3-4 minutes on one side only, until browned and starting to crisp up.  Remove.
  3. Using a bit more spray/oil, repeat with the second wrap.  While it’s heating, put your grated cheese on top (if using), then your veggie mixture, then your other wrap (cooked side up).  Squash down a bit and leave for 3-4 minutes again.
  4. Remove carefully from the pan onto the plate.  Slice into 4 wedges and top with chunks of avocado and pumpkin seeds (alternatively, you can stir these into your veggie mixture at the end of step 1).

I served mine with some light crème fraiche (sour cream would also work).

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Positive food blogging

Smashed avocado and pumpkin seed toasted thins with salad.  Nourishing, delicious fuel for my body! :)

Smashed avocado and pumpkin seed toasted thins with salad. Nourishing, delicious fuel for my body! 🙂

Morning all. I’ve decided I need to be more positive about food, and I want my blog to reflect this.  I think that lately I have blogged a lot about my daily struggles/victories with eating, and it all makes me feel quite insecure.  For example, the other day I blogged about how well I was doing, then afterwards got all insecure that I’d been over-confident and went home and snacked on crap all night.  It isn’t working for me, and while this is a good place to get out what’s going on in my head when I feel the need, I think I just need to take a step back, relax and not necessarily detail every up-day and down-day.  I think in a way, it “feeds” the slight issues I have with food (I’ve never gone so far as to say I have an ED, although I have definitely flirted with one).  It’s a lifetime game, this healthy eating thing, and I think if I were to shift my focus towards being enthusiastic and excited about all the fantastic healthy foods I love, I might feel a lot happier and more secure about food.  🙂

Above is my delicious lunch from yesterday – half an avocado and pumpkin seeds on a toasted sandwich thin with a rocket & berry salad.  It was just heavenly.   I went for a 10 mile run (absolute killer!), so this was great fuel.

Have you got any similar lunch ideas?

Happy Wednesday 🙂

New burger restaurant indulgence, a binge-eating near miss and Monday food, mood etc

clean_eatingHappy Monday.  Yesterday me and S drank a bottle of Prosecco with strawberries while we watched the Wimbledon tennis final and then went to try out a new trendy burger restaurant that had just opened in town.  Cue:  menus typed out on pieces of notepaper, exposed ligament bulb lighting, brioche buns a-plenty and more beanie hats, beards and checked shirts than you can shake a (suitably trendy) stick at.  (I welcome this in our little sailing town, which until relatively recently was fairly hipster-free and catered mainly for the older, wealthier sailors who visit in their thousands throughout the summer.)

The meal we had was actually delicious – since S decided to cut out meat a few months ago (hooray!), eating out has become more fun as now we can swap tasters and share bits.  Lo and behold, there were 2 veggie burgers on the menu (I wasn’t expecting that) – a portabello mushroom with goats cheese and chutney in brioche bun, and a grilled halloumi with roasted peppers and pesto in ciabatta.  I fancied the halloumi (I can never get that excited about a mushroom), but S was set on ordering this so I went for the mushroom, so we could half/half.  The mushroom was by far the best.  Something about the combination of ridiculously squishy brioche against fleshy mushroom, creamy slab of goats cheese and sweet, sticky chutney was a combination I could have demolished twice over.

Today I feel pretty good, I had the diet doubt all Friday and Saturday where I was feeling negative and wanting to eat fairly constantly, but (touchwood) I rode the wave without *too* much damage – and no binge, which is the very important thing here.  Saturday morning my urge to binge was phenomenal, I mean at 11am I was telling myself “there’s no way I can fight this, how can I struggle with this urge all day, I give up” – but I stepped back and used all my strength to ask myself “why right now?  What is different about today that’s making me want to do this when I haven’t had the binge urge in ages?”  It was because of a change in routine – instead of being at work I suddenly found myself home alone until 2pm (S was covering at the shop), unplanned, and since the weather was poor I couldn’t lay out in the sun.  I was bored!  I was just bloody bored.  Luckily I did recognise this just in time, I had my (healthy) lunch very early to calm the beast in my stomach (I was genuinely hungry, and eating an early lunch, I realised, was a far more sensible idea than raiding the cupboards in a frenzy of gluttony).  I then started prep for dinner later and before I knew it, it was nearly time to go to work and I’d distracted myself long enough for the feeling to fade.  I KNOW that a year ago that would have definitely been a binge – I would have eaten everything I could find then felt incredibly guilty, disgusting and depressed (and spent all day not wanting to see or talk to anyone).  So I’m proud of myself.  I still had nagging food thoughts for the rest of the day, and didn’t eat perfectly, so nothing’s black and white.  But it’s significant progress, and I’m really happy with that.  Rachel 1, binge beast 0.

Todays food:

Breakfast – actually I skipped brekkie today.  I know it’s a cardinal sin but I just felt a bit queasy this morning.

Lunch – sandwich thin with light cheese slice, reduced fat hummus and salad, plus snack of fresh mixed fruit and sugar free jelly – 350 cals

Dinner – haven’t decided yet.  Usually around 550 cals

Total = 900 cals.  I’m sure I’ll be hungry later for eating so little, so maybe I’ll bulk up dinner or have some snacks later!

Friday!

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I need to tell you about my amazing run last night!  I was seriously tired after a really busy, hot day in my ice cream shop, and a big part of me just wanted to lay on the sofa and eat/rest.  But I had a spark in me to get out there, so I grasped that feeling and went for it.  I did my fastest ever run – 6 miles at 6:54 per mile!  Really pushed myself hard – it was hot, I wanted to stop and collapse half way, but I fought hard and just felt on such a high afterwards as the sweat poured off my face and I saw my time! I tell you, the victory shower you have after a good run is like no other 🙂

I have work all weekend (including nights in restaurant) which is a bit depressing but will finish on Sunday at 2pm, then me & S will spend the rest of the day drinking Prosecco, eating a take-away and watching the tennis (Wimbledon men’s final).  Hurry up Sunday afternoon!

Food diary:

Breakfast – an incredible combination of uncooked oats (20g), rice crispies (10g), 1 tbsp. coconut vegan yogurt, 1 tsp peanut butter, 1/2 small banana, sprinkle of stevia and some unsweetened almond milk – so yummy! 200 cals

Lunch – bagel (not skinny!) with reduced fat hummus, and light cheese slice – 300 cals

Snacks – fruit pot, sugar free jelly – 50 cals

Dinner – veggie fajitas, jacket potato or spaghetti Bolognese – around 550 cals

Total 1100.

A dip in morale… and Thursday food, mood etc

It’s nice to be able to say that (give or take) I’ve managed to keep on the straight and narrow with my healthy/clean eating over the last few months – after some awful binge-eating last year, I now feel a lot more stable and happy mentally, and that (generally) I’m back in control of my eating.  I still have slip-ups (which I blog about extensively – “I can’t stop eating, I feel depressed and can’t snap out of it, what if this is the start of the biggest binge ever” etc) but on reflection I wouldn’t call them “binge” episodes – more like comfort-eating, and I always manage to get back in the driving seat within a day (or 3).

I’ve been super healthy and not had any slip-ups in the last 2-3 weeks, and I’ve felt good, but out of nowhere my morale has dipped the last few days, and I’ve had a constant “what’s the point?” whiney voice in my head that refuses to budge.  I’ve been fighting urges to comfort eat fairly constantly (I know it’s different to actual hunger, because I want to sabotage and eat chocolate, fudge, ice cream etc – not healthy things).  I find this very strange.  Why have I gone on a downer?  So far I haven’t really caved in any significant way (each evening I feel like I could eat a family bar of chocolate, but I settle for 3 squares and some plain popcorn etc), but all evening I have the voice in my head telling me how delicious X/Y/Z would be – all evening I fight the urges, it’s such a struggle.  I’ve had a good couple of weeks where I just felt good for eating loads of healthy wholefoods and I wasn’t tempted to ruin it, now all I want to do is eat crap.  It’s very weird.  I hope that it passes soon – I want to go back to it being easy and feeling great for it!  Maybe it comes like a wave, and I just need to stay strong and ride it out.  I hope.

Todays food:

Breakfast – 3 tbsp. instant oats with water (I was at my mum’s!) – 100 cals

Lunch – spinach, tomato, rocket, beetroot, cucumber, butternut squash, cabbage, mushroom, pumpkin seed and small amount wholewheat pasta salad – 250 cals

Snack – fresh melon, strawberry & kiwi with 1 tbsp. vegan coconut yogurt – 100 cals

Dinner – either veggie fajitas or jacket potato & salad – around 550 cals

Total = 1000 cals.  Definitely room for a treat, but might have to go out for a run tonight – S is working til midnight and I don’t fancy my chances against the snack monster if I’m sat at home alone all night feeling gloomy!  A run always puts me back on my A-game.  Writing this blog definitely makes me feel calmer and stronger too 🙂