Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Fat Tuesday on a scale of 1-10

Here are my excuses for not posting anything on Fat Tuesdays over at Taylors because don't people trying to lose weight and eat healthier and exercise more generally have a list of excuses handy? Okay maybe not but I do. And they are all really good.

1. I have been traveling. A lot. And lots of travel means lots of eating out. And I have no willpower so it's hard to choose a grilled chicken salad a-gain when there are so many wonderfully interesting dishes on a menu.

How's it going Joyce?

Well, I think I've done okay here. Maybe better than okay. I have been choosing fish when available because it seems that restaurants are able to prepare fish in a way that is tasty but not calorie laden. Obviously I'm not eating it fried but I've had several dishes recently that were grilled or baked and topped with some sort of veggie combo or fruit salsa type topping that were very good. I have been skipping the potato side and going for steamed veggies which is an option in most restaurants. I like veggies, all of them in fact, so its not a bad option. It's just hard not to think about that baked potato. And the butter. Sigh. And no dessert. Or maybe just a bite if hubs orders something. I have really cut back on the sugar and as time passes I'm finding I crave it less. I give myself an 8.

2. I hate to exercise. Okay maybe not an excuse but it is a fact. Let me rephrase that to say I don't hate the kind of exercise that involves a hike in the woods or out in the countryside. And I can swim hundreds of laps in a pool at a lovely beachside resort but I think I mentioned I live in NJ so yeah, that's not happening. What I hate is the kind of exercise that involves stepping onto the elliptical beside 40 other sweating people and running no where while trying hard not to look at the elapsed time or the calories burned or especially the time remaining. Ugh. And then there is Jillian. Double ugh.

How's it going Joyce?

Not bad but room for improvement and excuse #1 comes into play here too. Hey, what good is an excuse if you can't use it? When I'm at home I hit the gym about 3-4x week. I have to make myself go but I go. I've also become reacquainted with Jillian because even though I don't like her she is effective. I've been going to yoga once a week too (when I'm in town) and I really do like that a lot. Thankfully there is a light at the end of the tunnel concerning the unbearably hot weather we've had this summer and I know as we have cooler temps hubs and I will be out hiking again on the weekends which is my favorite way to burn calories. Even my pup who loves a walk more than anything has not wanted to leave the confines of our family room this summer. But autumn is coming. Yay!

I know this is the one area I need to do more which is why I give myself a 6...its not so much my eating habits as it is my metabolism slowing down and it just takes more work to burn calories now than it did at 30 when I burned calories simply by breathing. I don't miss everything about my 30s but I do miss that.

3. Low fat food is often boring. Sorry but it's true.

How's it going Joyce?

I like to cook but I haven't found a large array of really good tasting low fat meals to prepare, particularly dinners. Plus I love to look at recipes and cookbooks and I just can't help but think about all the fabulous stuff out there that I am not cooking because its got too much fat, sugar or salt. I've had several people give me recipes for lower fat meals and they usually preface it by saying, 'This one isn't bad.' I have to say that doesn't make me want to run to my kitchen to try it. I'd love to have a collection of 'This is fabulous and you must try it' light and healthy recipes. Even though I feel like I'm missing out on some wonderful dishes I have been making a real effort here. It helps that the summertime produce is fabulous and I am really going to miss all the fresh fruits and veg we've had recently. I have been trying lots of new recipes and limit my dessert baking to those times we have company for dinner or my kids home to visit so I will give myself a 7.

On that note I did make a dish last night that we really enjoyed. We love Mexican food and flavors and this was really tasty. My hubs really liked it too and I'll definitely make it again. Charring the tomatoes made them taste nice and smoky and added lots of flavor which is generally what I find is missing from most lower fat meals. Flavor. It's essential.
I found the recipe here- www.delish.com.

Chicken Tacos with Charred Tomatoes

2-3 plum tomatoes
8 oz. boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 tsp canola oil (divided)
1/2 c finely chopped white onion
1 clove garlic minced
1 small jalapeno pepper (seeded and minced)
2 tsp. lime juice and lime wedges for garnish
2 tsp chopped fresh cilantro
2 scallions, chopped
6 small corn tortillas

1. Heat a medium skillet over high heat until very hot. Add whole tomatoes and cook turning occasionally with tongs until charred on all sides, 8-10 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool slightly. Cut tomatoes in half crosswise, squeeze to discard seeds, chop the remaining pulp and skin.

2. Cut chicken into chunks, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add 1 tsp oil to the pan and heat over high heat until very hot. Add chicken and cook until it is browned and no longer pink in the middle, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

3. Reduce the heat to medium and add the remaining 1 tsp of oil. Add onions and cook, stirring til softened, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and jalapeno and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add lime juice, chicken and tomatoes and cook, stirring til heated thru, 1-2 minutes. Stir in cilantro and scallions. Divide the chicken mixture among warmed tortillas. Serve with lime wedges and low fat sour cream if desired.

Total fat-9 g
sat fat-1 g

Serves 2 but could easily be doubled...Enjoy!


  1. Sounds like you have a grasp of reality and making the most of it. So glad that you are having a great time traveling and, yes, cooler weather is on the horizon...right??

  2. Sorry, but I don't like this post. It's making me feel guilty. lol Okay, okay, I need to feel guilty and get busy and do something to be exercising and eating better! So thanks for the kick in the rear end. I do need it.

    Have a great day!

  3. I'm getting the exercise down, but I'm really doing badly in the eating area. It just seems that, if looking at something fattening makes me gain weight, it's only fair that refusing to eat it makes me lose a pound or two. Not fair!

  4. Oh Joyce,

    I can really relate to these struggles as I am trying to join in the "fun" with you. You are right when traveling and eating out, that salads can become overwhelming and besides chicken and some fish dishes there isn't that much out there. I am struggling with breakfast items because I am a breakfast skipper.

    I hate exercising and know that if we had a pool in our yard, I would use it for that but we don't so I can't.

    Waiting for the summer temps to end, there is no use exercising in the 100+ temps here.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  5. That recipe sounds great!

    Have you tried taking any classes at the gym? I get bored on the treadmill/elliptical too. I try to mix it up with a spin class or powercut or something during the week.

  6. I HIGHLY recommend the cook book by Cooking Light called The Lazy Gourmet (1997). You can get it from Amazon used for just 10 bucks. My favorite recipes are: Cherry Limeade, Cheddar Drop Biscuits, Malibu Brownie Torte, Cajun Spiced Catfish, *Simple Beef Stroganoff, Veal in Lime Cream Sauce, *Pork Tenderloins with Cream Sauce, *Sweet and Sour Chicken and *Spicy Tomato-Corn Chowder!

    I make the recipes with asterisks VERY OFTEN!

  7. Hey, Joyce!
    How's it going'?
    So funny.

  8. Check out the chili broccoli recipe at:


    Looks really good!

  9. Yes a way too hot one here too, we are about to break some records here in Southern GA and Northern FL, been in the mid 90's for 44 days now, where Hotchiwaawa, that means hot in my special tongue, heehee, have a blessed day, Barbara

  10. Thanks for your comment on my blog, Joyce! You're reading Radical with us, right??

  11. Hi Joyce ~~ You are pretty well doing the right things. On the cruises I will loose four or five pounds because of all the fish I eat. Our last trip to London and the Baltic I lost only three pounds total. The fish and chips and mushy peas and gelato could have done me in.

    You chicken taco recipe sounds good. It wouldn't be as good but we can buy a ready made meat and spice and vegetables (peppers, onions, etc) all frozen together. Two pounds heavey with white meat chicken is about $6.50.

    You have been traveling a lot. Is it about time to settle down?

  12. You're still trying - that's what matters. Good for you!

  13. I am still coming to grips with my once reliable body's BETRAYAL. 47 is NOT heaven.

  14. I hate hate hate hate exercise, so I've tried to go the food makeover route. I've not had a white potato in a month, more salads, and more veggies.

    This last weekend I fell hard off the wagon, but I still managed to lose 1 pound last week.


  15. I know I've said it before, but you crack me up. :) My workout routine is completely out of whack right now. Sigh... Maybe I can add to your list of excuses. Ha!

  16. If I don't do something really soon about my weight I am going to be deeply depressed. I must get the weight off. Everyday is Fat day over here!