Sticking to It

In my previous post, “Getting Back on Track”, I talked about meal planning and all its glory.  Well today is about staying on track and continuing to not only meal plan, but how to recover from all the holiday goodies that your waistline is regretting.

The first week of meal planning was a pretty good success.
We had a couple of changes in plans over the course of the week, but I was pretty adamant about sticking to the plan I had laid out, even if it meant shuffling around a couple of meals.  Check out the end of this post for this week’s meal plan and pictures.

My meal plan is growing in importance for this next week because I am now in “Holiday Recovery Mode”.  
Even as a budding dietitian, I do still like to enjoy the holidays with my family, which means eating some food that usually doesn’t make it onto my plate most other days of the year.  I find that when I meal plan, I tend to eat at home more and I tend to eat more vegetables, both of which help me to make and choose healthier options.

This is the time of year where many people are wanting to make changes to their diets.  
The Dietary Guidelines are a good place to start.  The 2015 guidelines will be coming out soon (it’s a legislative process, so it’s slow), but for now we have the 2010 guidelines.  In the changes (I’ve linked to the full article below), the focus will be less on eating certain foods, and more on the overall diet pattern.  They specifically mention three patterns:  Healthy U.S.-Style pattern, Healthy Mediterranean-Style pattern, and the Healthy Vegetarian pattern.

The current Dietary Guidelines. AKA, What generally healthy adults should be eating. 

A LENGTHY explanation of the changes that will be made to the Dietary Guidelines

I studied abroad in Span for 17 days this past summer.  I was in central Spain in the city of Valladolid (pop. ~400,000).  The country and the culture are beautiful and I miss it every day, plus the seafood is INCREDIBLE…I digress.  The Spaniards generally adhere to the Mediterranean diet pattern, although more so on the coasts than in central Spain.  However, even in Valladolid, I found elements of the Mediterranean diet, including LOTS of olive oil, an abundance of seafood, and very little other kinds of meat (pork, chicken, beef).  I will have to make a separate post about Spain itself because I could talk about it all day.  And I have about 2,000 pictures (literally), but I’ll only share a couple here.

So, in general, when it comes to resolutions and trying to get healthier,
take small steps toward a larger SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Sensitive) goal.  My goal is to start with eating more vegetables, which my meal plan is helping me to do.  Next month, we’re going to add in more fruits (maybe sooner if I’m feeling confident).  Then, more whole grains, etc.  I want to eat healthier and it’s a process that needs small steps.

Alright, now that I’ve told you of my struggles and goals, here’s this week’s menu plan:

Sunday:  Slow Cooker Balsamic Roast Beef with Potatoes and Roasted Carrots (I was in a rush to get my husband fed and get to the grocery store before the Snowmagedden that was supposedly coming our way)

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Monday:  BBQ Chicken Skewers with Cheesy Farro and Roasted Cauliflower

Tuesday:  Crockpot Hamballs with Leftover Cheesy Farro and Roasted Cauliflower (It lasted forever! I had to eat it three days in a row.) Oven Roasted Potatoes, Steamed Veggies (or the Roasted Carrots I didn’t get to earlier in the week)

Wednesday:  Thai Chicken Curry with Brown Rice.  This is a curry recipe I developed based on a Massaman curry for a class this semester, and it’s delish. Not to toot my own horn.

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Thursday:  Slow Cooker Cube Steak with Egg Noodles and Steamed Veggies

Friday:  Pork Ragu with Polenta

Saturday:  Sage Mac and Cheese with Shaved Ham and Spinach

Soooo…with the New Year Holiday and my husband having the weekend off, we deviated from the plan for the week and did some more eating out.  However, on New Year’s Eve, my roomie and I made some RIDICULOUS homemade dumplings, so not all foodie experimentation was lost this week. 🙂

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That’s all for today! Until later, keep your mind sharp and your knives sharper.

 

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