Jerm’s Herbed Baked Chicken with a Side of Heaven

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Jerm’s Herbed Baked Chicken with Honey & Chili Flaked Carrots and Couscous Stuffed Romas

Jeremy sent over these pictures today, and I just had to post them! He doesn’t really cook recipes, but he put together the instructions below.

Chicken

  • Boneless skinless chicken breast.
  • Seasoned both sides with salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and dried herbs (I have a grinder that has a French style).
  • Preheat oven to 425. I use a non-stick oven pan.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and set timer for 30 mins (These were fairly thick breasts).

Tomatoes

  • Cut in half 3 roma tomatoes and scooped out the insides with a spoon. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper inside.
  • The filling was boxed garlic and herb small couscous, but you can sub quinoa if you like. To that I added finely copped green onion, and mixed in low fat wedge cheese (come in a little wheel with a cow on it and is individually packaged).
  • Slice a little sliver off the bottom of each tomato to make it sit level on the non-stick oven tray. Fill each “cup” with the filling mixture.
  • Sprinkle with some herbed bread crumbs and drizzle some extra virgin olive oil (evoo).
  • Cook them with the chicken on 425 for 17 minutes or until brown on top.

Carrots 

  • Peel some whole carrots (not very large) and cut them in half lengthwise.
  • Rub with salt, pepper, red chili flake, and evoo.
  • Cook on medium high heat in a pan until almost tender.
  • Pour it honey and let caramelize on the outside prior to finishing.

And done!

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Will you cook Jeremy’s dinner? Guys, impress your lady with this dinner– it’s sure to impress!

Jeremy’s One Pan Meal (Breakfast!)

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jermmealMy friend Jeremy is one of the best cooks I know, and he cooks amazing Southern food. Lately, he’s been getting into shape. I follow, and long for (seriously!), his food on IG and Facebook. He knows I love his food, and he sent me this message of Facebook, “I made this little gem this morning. Turkey bacon, 2 eggs scrambled with fat free cream cheese peppers, onions, and sharp cheddar.”He continued, “And yes. I have decided that you don’t need 2 pieces of bacon or even 3. What I do it take one piece and I chop it up and then I scramble it in with my eggs so you get all the flavor and happiness of the smokey bacon but at much less cost.” It’s a simple one pan meal! I can’t wait to try it this weekend!

For exercise, he plays a lot of golf. It’s important to remember exercise can be about staying active with activities you love. You don’t have to go to a gym and spend hours on a treadmill. Personally, I cannot wait to hiking in North Georgia this summer. I love how Jeremy is getting in shape by cooking simple, yet delicious, meals and keeping exercise simple. He’s going to look great by summer!

“The difference between a goal and a dream is a deadline.” – Stephen Smith

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It’s winter. It’s cold. Do not let the bad weather stop you. Pick a race, set a goal, and go for it. Setting goals turns dreams into reality. One of my favorite quotes is, “dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die tomorrow.” Setting goals is the second part of this quote. By setting goals, you’re living like you may not get another chance to make your dreams come true. I’m taking my own advice. On January 18th, I am running a 5k with my friend Tricia. I am finally getting back to running outside. I’ve been working out a ton, but running outside still gives me anxiety (and I’ve been avoiding it). I’ve set a goal, though, and I am going to kill the 5k! I’ve always dreamed of being a runner, and I don’t care if it takes me a million tries, I am going to be a runner. So, I ran outside at the park today with Sophie, and I did surprisingly well. It’s all mental, people!

Along these same lines, I’ve wanted to write a blog for the past couple weeks about the anxiety and shame overweight people have when they first start working out. I said to myself too many times to count that I’d join a gym once I lost enough weight to not be the fat lady at the gym. I know I am not alone on this, either. I also always wanted to grab some shoes and run on the sidewalk, but I didn’t want others to see my belly bounce or see my terrible form. Worst yet, I didn’t want them to look at me a think, “look at her trying to be thin, she’ll never lose weight” and laugh out-loud at me. I didn’t want people to know if I failed. I’m telling you, I had these thoughts daily as I ate Taco Bell secretly in my car at night. I’d think this would be my last fast food meal, and I’d start working out soon. Then all the anxieties and images of super fit and “perfect” people at the gym pointing and staring and actually coming up to me and saying I’m too fat to be at the gym. My fears were really, really detailed! Sometimes I’d cry and sometimes the Taco Bell was comforting. I’d go back home and go back to Taco Bell the very next day.

I remember when I first started running with Jessica (who is very slim but works out a ton) at LA Fitness. I was done with my run, and she was going to run a little longer. She told me to stretch. There was another row of treadmills behind us packed with people (all really in shape people). She kept looking back and telling me to stretch. I just stood there paralyzed. I didn’t want the people to see me try to touch my toes and stretch, and I didn’t want to admit to her I was too embarrassed to stretch in front of others. Finally, she finished up and we stretched off to the side.

I was surprised when I read Fit to Fat to Fit, because it’s about a male trainer who purposely gained weight to understand his clients better and to show them weight loss is possible. He went from super confident to experiencing some of the same fears of judgement and social anxiety I’ve experienced since gaining weight. He stood in front of his closet trying on clothes over and over to find something that made him look less fat. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been late to hang out with friends, because I’ve tried on twenty shirts to find out that hides my back fat roll (which I no longer have!!) and my stomach bulge. I’ve actually canceled many, many times with friends at the last minute, because I couldn’t bare the thought of being the fat chick at a bar or swanky restaurant. To all my friends, I apologize. I’m surprised ya’ll stuck around with how many times I’ve shown up late or not at all.

Being heavy consumed me. It took over my life. I couldn’t get up from my desk at work without thinking about looking fat in front of my coworkers. I could go on and on and on. I never changed, though, because I had irrational fears of active people rejecting me. The funny this is, now that I work out at the gym and in a challenging group exercise class, I know my fears couldn’t be further from the truth. At my group workout class, Blast 900, so many of my classmates have come up to me after class to tell me good job. They’ll comment and say it’s great I’ve made it to so many classes. If my form is bad, they’ll stop to show me lift the weights the right way. In the gym, no one has ever looked at me weird or said anything mean. My fears were all in my head. Furthermore, I now know a lot of active people are really positive people. They’re excited you’re getting healthy, because they’re passionate about health. They want everyone to be healthy! They’re proud of you for trying to get into shape.

And you know what, if I ever do run into the one negative person who does say something about my weight, I don’t care what they have to say about me or my form or my fat rolls or anything else for that matter. I’m out there trying. I’m out there trying to be better. That’s what matters. You’re out there trying. You’re out there trying to be better. That’s what matters. Please don’t allow yourself to be trapped in the same cycle I was stuck in for years. It’s such a debilitating state to live in– just step into a gym or go for a run outside– you’ll be glad you did.

It’s all mental, people!

P.S. Check out this kickass kickboxing class you can do with dumballs or just your arms at home. I loved it!

Cleansing the Soul

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Over the weekend, I started taking the Vitamin Code Raw One for Women daily vitamin created by Dr. Jordan Rubin. Vitamin Code Raw One For Women is uncooked, untreated and unadulterated. It is RAW, gluten-free, dairy-free and contains no binders and no fillers. It’s a little spendy (buy it online!), but it’s the only daily vitamin I’ve tried that doesn’t hurt my stomach. Vitamins are so important! Even if you eat right, most health professionals recommend extra vitamins. I am partial to gummy vitamins (what?!? they’re almost like candy!), but I’m making an exception for superior quality.

I’m also checking out their Perfect Cleanse. Now cleanses kinda, sorta, really scare me. I tried one from Whole Foods one time, and it made me so sick. My stomach hurt for days! I haven’t had any issues with the perfect cleanse. I’m on day 5 of the 10 days cleanse, and it seems to be doing it’s job well without any pain or discomfort. It really is a new way to cleanse! I must admit, though, one of the steps is a powder. They give you the option of drinking it with water or juice. I highly recommend drinking it with juice or almond milk. It tastes absolutely disgusting in water! Don’t do it!! Anyhow, I am excited to remove toxins from my body and give it a fresh start. Here’s to a happy colon!

On a good note, I am still Blasting away, and I’ve been meeting with my trainer, too. My coworkers and friends are starting to really notice my weight loss (how cool is that?!). I’m definitely noticing my muscles! It’s weird having muscles when I’ve never, ever had any definition anywhere before. Anddd I officially have 202 blog followers! I was so surprised to see that today. Howdy, all 202 0f you!!

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Having a blast!

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This week I finally tried the Blast 900 class my friend kept telling me about, and it’s hard as hell! The Blast 900 website describes the class best, “BLAST900 is a fat shredding, muscle toning, personalized group exercise class in which people of every fitness level alternate between cardio on a treadmill and strength training on the floor, each working at their own pace to reach THEIR maximum effort. Our specific formula for creating our class structure is what guarantees each client THE ULTIMATE WORKOUT and will forever change how you look, feel and perform.” Everyone is supposed to burn 900 calories by the end of the class, and I believe it! The picture above is immediately after my first class. I was completely covered in sweat! By my third class, I was able to run at the 7 speed on the treadmill (which I’ve never done), and I was able to walk at the 21 incline setting. The weights are intense, too. There’s absolutely no way I won’t get into shape (score!) if I continue with this class. It’s super intense with non-stop movement for a hour. After my third class, I could really feel the muscle soreness. I’ve been tired since yesterday morning!

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I also bought a Fitbit Flex this week. It’s the neatest little device, and it’s awesome to see how sedentary I am during a workday. I saw how few steps I take on a normal day without working out, and it’s actually really crazy how little I move around. The Fitbit also tracks my calories, sleep, water, food intake, and I can track my friend’s progress, too. It’s really neat! I’m looking forward to tracking my progress throughout the next couple of months.

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Food-wise this past week, I did pretty good. I had a lot of protein shakes, protein, veggies, and fruits. Eating healthy is getting easier, but I am not perfect. I am starting to see results. I took a picture (below), and I was surprised to see I am slimming down. I guess there’s a part of me that still doesn’t believe all of this will work, but it’s starting to show. I’m glad I don’t have to cut my calories super low to lose weight, because I do enjoy food too much to do a super low calorie diet. It may take me a while longer to lose weight, but I am proud of doing it the healthy way. textScreen Shot 2013-11-17 at 6.41.42 PM

“Autumn… the year’s last, loveliest smile.” ― William Cullen Bryant

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The past couple of weeks have been a wirlwind! We had Halloween, my birthday (had a great friend breakfast and went to the World of Coke), a trip to Houston, and work has been crazy! I’ve been on IG a lot, because it’s faster, but I’ve missed posting here. I did crossfit in Houston with my friend, Barbara. I had a great time, and I really enjoyed the group aspect of the work out. I’ve also been working out with my trainer, and we went hiking at Kennesaw Mountain today. I had a blast, and it was a total workout! I’ve been working on my diet (trying to cut out sugar, especially).

I need to start working on my cardio routine again, though. I need to find a routine that works for me, but it’s all a work in progress. I’m trying to decide if I want to try crossfit or do this Blast 900 class which combines cardio and weights with interval training. Or I keep going to the gym on my own. I’m hoping I pick one soon!

I am trying to say no to all the extra holiday treats. This is a tough time of year to try to be healthy! I’m going to keep trying, though. It’s tough to say no to all the wonderful cookies the venders keep sending. Not going to lie. 😉

Here’s a ton of pictures of my workouts, hikes, food prep, and a few fun ones!

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New Way of Eating: Dr. Jonny Bowden Style

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Well, to start off with, I let my legs rest up a bit and then I got sick. So, I haven’t worked out a ton. During this time, I discovered I go back to emotionally eating when I don’t work out. Working out has actually become therapeutic for me.  Now I need to keep exercising to stay balanced. I never would have that I would really enjoy working out, but I do crave it now. When I’m having a bad day at work, I think about pushing through it at the gym. I’m also finding when I have a slip out, or a flat out bad eating week, I don’t let it derail my entire progress. I just get back on the wagon and try again. That’s a good thing. In the past, I would eat a bad meal and stop “dieting” entirely. I’m not giving up so easily this time. I did better today with food prep and a walk in the park with Sophie (pics for proof!).

I’m also trying to focus more on what I am eating and not just how much I’m exercising. I know I need to cut sugar and foods that break down into sugar out of my diet. I stumbled upon Dr. Jonny Bowden tonight (Unleash Your Thin). He’s all about avoiding sugar and any foods that cause your insulin levels to spike. His style of eating reminds me of my friend Barbara’s views on eating. She just created a food prep business in Houston, TX called Elite F’ing Meals. Check it out! Barbara’s food is amazing and super healthy! Anyway, back to Dr. Jonny Bowden, I bought his program, and he has a lot of simple recipes even I can make! It’s an easy to follow plan, and he teaches you the why and the science behind the program. I really think knowing why you’re eating a certain way is important. It’s easier to keep up with and substitute at a restaurant or in a bind when you know you’re eating a certain way. Here’s a snippet from his e-book Fat Burning Blueprint:

“But let’s never lose sight of why we’re limiting our food this week, and exactly what we’re limiting it to. To review: 

What makes you fat is the “fat-storage” hormone, insulin. 

What raises insulin is high blood sugar. 

What raises blood sugar is high-glycemic carbohydrates. 

Therefore, to become a fat-burning machine, we need to control our insulin levels, which is done by controlling blood sugar, which is done by controlling our intake of high-glycemic carbs.”

 While you’re in the main part of his program, you’ll avoid 9 foods:

Potatoes 

Rice, wheat or other grains and starches 

Pasta 

Cereal 

Bread 

Sugar 

Alcohol

Dairy 

Fruit if you have more than 15 pounds to lose

(Exception: Everyone should eat 1 apple per day! If you need some variety or don’t like apples, you can have ½ cup of berries or a ½ grapefruit instead.)

I’m excited to learn more about his program and try more of his recipes. I’m also feeling mostly better, so I’ll pick up my work outs this week. I hope everyone has a good week!

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Who’s that lady?

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This week I fit into size medium work out pants. I was super excited, because I was in a size extra large just a few months ago. I was pretty stoked when they fit (and looked good!). I’ve found with my weight loss it’s the little surprises that keep me going. It was easier to push myself the next day through my group run knowing I’m actually getting smaller. I am truly seeing if I stick with this, and keep on trucking, I will see results. Seeing results is awesome, because if I wasn’t seeing results, it’d be hard to stick with the routine (just being honest!).

I stuck with my work outs this week. I ran and did my homework for my training class, and we ran 8 miles on Saturday.  Let me repeat that, we ran 8 miles on Saturday!! That’s a lot!! This was the first week I did my training runs completely outside and not on the treadmill. Running outside is so much more difficult, and so much worse on my legs, than running on a treadmill. Once Saturday came, though, my legs were still sore from the week. I struggled to keep up, because my legs were so tight and sore. One of the coaches walked with me for a bit. We stretched once we were warmed up, and then we continued our interval running/walking until the finished. I was glad for the extra encouragement, and I learned I need to listen to my body. I can only push it so far before I push it too far, and I don’t want to cause any injuries (or permanent damage). I’ve become friends with my after run routine: stretch, foam roll, ice, and bengay. This routine is my life saver, and it really helps my legs! This week in personal training, my trainer had me do weights for my upper body. I loved it! It was difficult, but it was more enjoyable than cardio. I am looking forward to getting stronger, too!

My diet has been pretty good, and I’ve been on the hunt for new recipes. I think I need to mix it up a bit. I’m going to start tracking my food to really see if I’m getting all the nutrients I need.

Also, I’m getting addicted to IG. Check me out there @kimtoslim! I post a few times a day. 🙂

Here’s some pics from this week!

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Food Prep Mason Jar Style

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Food prep 1; Fast food 0.

After running (interval running, of course) 3 miles at the gym… I food prepped! Jessica challenged me to food prep today, and I totally delivered. I can’t wait to eat it all! It’s actually a ton of food, and for whatever reason, everything tastes so much better out of a mason jar. Am I right?

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P.S. I am working out with a trainer tomorrow. Excited!

Brand New Blog!

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It seems everyone has a blog. I had an “about me” blog last year, but I didn’t think I am interesting enough to have a blog just about me. I really wanted a “theme” blog, but I didn’t know what to write about it. Lately, though, I am surrounded by people losing weight and adopting healthier lifestyles. I’ve been heavy on and off for about 17 years now, and I finally want to end the cycle. I want to be healthier for me, and I am finally ready to do it. I think blogging about it will help me along the way… So, here goes nothing!

So, how out of shape am I? My roommate and I walked a mile this week, and my heart hurt. I am 27-years-old (don’t repeat that!). I should be able to run, skip, jog, and cycle my way through a mile effortlessly! I was so shocked my heart hurt. For the first time in my life, I “feel” fat. I don’t know if I am feeling it more, because I am getting older, but I definitely feel it now… And it’s not a good feeling.

I’ve always said here and there I need to lose weight, but I really didn’t mind being a little chubby. My heart was not truly in losing weight. I just felt like I needed to say I needed to lose weight to fit in a little more with friends. I am not huge by any means, but I am big enough for it to be an issue. So, I’ve been walking more with the roomie. The mile is now two miles, and we’ve walked six miles overall this past week. I am going back to the park tonight, so we’ll make it eight miles. I even encouraged her to go yesterday, but she thought we would be too busy. We were busy, but I’m proud of us for going.

So, here’s to Kim to Slim!