The Failure to Plan

I love it when Oprah asks people at the end of every interview, “so what do you know for sure?” I envision myself on them dope butter soft leather couches of hers saying something very professional, something my momma and grad school professors would be very proud of, something that contains a lot of big words with long syllables. LOL ūüėā

If she asked me that question today (as it pertains to improved eating, diet and health), I would say something cliché but very true: If you fail to plan, plan to fail.

I know this for sure. No matter what “diet” or life plan you are on, if you don’t plan (meals) and prepare ahead, please believe your efforts will result in epic fail. Trust me, I’ve been there, done that. Just look at your grocers freezers section, it’s stocked with tons of varieties of prepackaged processed meals. It’s a billion dollar industry because planning meals is KEY and those frozen meals are already “planned” for you. Problem is, majority of the unpronounceable ingredients in those things are not “food”.

I know committing and following through with a PLAN is a pain in the *bleep* but It’s a necessary evil that Im learning to become ok with because failure is no longer an option. I think I did a mediocre job planning for this first week of the Paleo challenge Ms. Alia (talkpaleo) has me on but the second thing I also know is: Im a work in progress.

Breakfast Plans for this week:
Egg white muffins

Snack plans for this week:
Apple Cinnamon Scones
Juicing/Smoothies

Dinner plans for this week:
Salmon
Shrimp
Butternut squash/Sweet Potato mash
Steam Veggies

Stay tuned this week to the blog for cool pictures and recipes to some of the items mentioned above.

Happy Planning!
~Nekesha

Thanks Mommy!

Come on…Let’s talk PALEO!

In my pre-PALEO life, Sundays were a day for lounging and rest.  I would wake up, decide which pancake house my boyfriend and I were going to visit that day, then overfill myself with pancakes and sausage and hot chocolate.  Oh those were the days.  I also remember that an hour after I ate, I felt bloated and I needed a nap.  Just a little problem of too much sugar and too many simple carbohydrates flooding my system.  Now my Sundays are filled with a lot more energy and a lot more food preparation.

I can’t rave enough about how much better I feel and look since I started eating PALEO.¬† However, I learned very early in my transition¬† that if¬†I was going to successfully navigate the PALEO diet I¬†had to force myself to¬†prepare my meals ahead of time.¬† There are two rules to following the PALEO diet-1.) You¬†have to¬†make a menu¬†for the week¬†or at least for the first few days of the week so¬†that you¬†can grocery shop, and 2.) you have to prep and cook as much as possible before the work week starts.

You will find that one of the challenges of adopting a PALEO diet lifestyle is that it requires more preparation than before.  For some, Saturdays are ideal however I prefer Sundays, so I spent a few hours today prepping for the week.  After some thought and some shopping, here is my menu for the next couple days:

Sunday Dinner

Grilled Ribeyes-marinated in coconut aminos, thyme, olive oil, Mrs. Dash, pepper and red pepper flakes

Cabbage with nitrate free bacon, olive oil, garlic and onion

Butternut Squash with olive oil, lemon and parsley

20 Ounces of water

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Monday Breakfast

Egg Muffins with Turkey Bacon and Green Onion

Hot Tea

¬Ĺ Apple

20 ounces of water

Snack

¬Ĺ Apple

8 Almonds

20 Ounces of water

Lunch

Crock pot Chicken Breast (Eat breast and lunch and wing for snack or eat dark if you prefer)

Carrots, parsnips, mushroom and red onion

20 Ounces of water

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Dinner

Chicken Salad (made from whole chicken leftovers, see… http://www.paleoeffect.com/recipes/paleo-chicken-salad-paleo-effect/

Lettuce of choice

Leftover butternut squash

Tuesday Breakfast

Salmon patties

1/2 avocado

1/2 cup of blueberries

Hot Tea

20 ounces of water

Snack

1/2 orange

10 walnuts

20 Ounces of water

Lunch

Broiled Tilapia with thyme and olive oil

Sweet potato

20 Ounces of water

Dinner

PALEO Meatloaf, see… http://thepaleodiet.com/paleo-diet-recipes/

Asparagus

Roasted broccoli

20 ounces of water

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Today I¬†prepared¬†the chicken in a crock pot, saut√©ed the cabbage and the butternut squash, baked the meatloaf and the sweet potatoes.¬† Now, that’s A LOT of cooking,¬†however,¬†I am¬†well prepared¬†for the week.

I have to pause for a moment to thank my Mom because she alone planned, prepped and cooked full meals for herself, her four children and her husband everyday of my childhood.  God bless that Lady!

Now, back to PALEO!  Feel free to prepare as much as you want but realize that the more you cook and prep ahead of time, the more successful you will be.  Once the week starts I will continue to cook on the nights when I get home at a decent hour.  For breakfast try to make meals that are simple since we are all trying to get out of the house and start our day.  If you have to keep it really simple, boil eggs while you are in the shower, add a piece of fruit or berries, water and your coffee or tea and you are ready to go!

You don’t have to follow my exact meal plan however trust me, you have to have a¬†plan.¬† Good luck with your inaugural week.

Morning Glory Muffins

Morning Glory Muffins

I love everything about my life…I have a wonderful husband, an amazing son, great family and friends who I love spending time with. The best thing for me is to be thankful for what I have, that is what I have learned so far in my life, and it makes me truly happy! Woke up this morning to the sound of birds singing and chirping, which I love I will admit!

The past week I made a decision to start eating paleo, Thanks Again Alia. I was struggling the first 3 days and my mind was taking over, repeating ‚ÄúI‚Äôm supposed to be happy yesterday and today‚Ķ?!?‚ÄĚ over and over, baffled by it, I blamed it on not getting enough sleep the week before, and guess what, I‚Äôm human! my goals for the month of April is to revolve around the word ENERGY. (something I can‚Äôt get enough of no matter how much I coffee I drink) with zero hesitation I went to the store and shopped for all healthy Ingredients, Meats, Veggies, Fruits, Oils and Coconut water which I already loved.
My Energy is starting to awaken more and more each day;-) Makes me happy.

My first posting for a recipe that I started with and would like to share are for “Morning Glory Muffins”. these are incredible. to be honest they taste so good I still feel guilty eating them.

Ingredients:
‚ÄĘ1/2 cup mashed sweet potato
‚ÄĘ1/2 cup shredded coconut
‚ÄĘ1/2 cup raisins
‚ÄĘ1/2 cup chopped walnuts
‚ÄĘ1/4 cup honey
‚ÄĘ1/8 cup shredded carrot
‚ÄĘ2 eggs
‚ÄĘ3/4 cup almond flour
‚ÄĘ1 tsp cinnamon
‚ÄĘ1 tsp vanilla extract
‚ÄĘ1 tsp baking powder

directions:
1.Preheat oven to 350*F.
2.Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and blend well.
3.Place 9 muffin cups in muffin tin.
4.Bake for 28-30 minutes or until muffins are cooked all the way through.
5.Allow to cool before serving

What the wha…

Let’s talk PALEO!

Sugar-Oh how I love you sugar.¬† But oh how I have to leave you alone.¬† I’m sitting at home a few months¬†ago,¬† minding my business when 60 Minutes decides to wreck my good evening.

See Sixty Minutes Segment on Sugar.

Sugar is addictive?¬† Sugar feeds cancer cells.¬†¬†What in the world?¬† I have to admit, I have long known that something¬†wasn’t right.¬† Whenever I eat sugar my stomach bloats,¬†I ride the high from the sugar rush, then crash when the sugar is gone.¬† SOMETHING AIN’T RIGHT!¬† Enter PALEO! ¬†Last year at my box (CrossFit lingo for gym) our Coach¬†challenged us to¬†eight weeks of PALEO eating.¬† Simply put, lean meats, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds.¬† I thought, no problem, this is going to be easy.¬† Well how wrong I was.¬† By the second day I could not believe how much I wanted sugar.¬† I cheated so many times during the challenge and unfortunately I did not win-well I didn’t win the challenge that is.¬† However,¬†I won something far more valuable.¬† I remember noticing that on the days when I was able to follow the PALEO diet, I felt better at work and didn’t experience the 10am crash.¬† I felt strong and¬†commanded my CrossFit workouts as my muscles began developing.¬† Something changed within me and I realized that by letting the sugar, the grains, the noodles, the processed foods go, I FELT BETTER!¬† I performed better.¬† I looked better.¬† So over this year I have transformed my eating.¬† Now, I eat PALEO for life.¬† Of course I will have a piece of cake at a celebration or a little mac and cheese from time to time.¬† But I no longer am who I use to be and my body is proof.¬† I am so thankful that I found PALEO because I am proud to say that as I turn the page to my 40th birthday, I am in the best shape of my life.

R.I.P Oatmeal

Growing up, I ate oatmeal like it was going out of style. In the 80s it was old fashion oats. Nothing fancy ya know cause my mom worked fifty-eleven jobs and had no time for breakfast that took much time to create. Then we discovered the instant stuff in the box with all the cool flavors (ie apple cinnamon spice). Along with the cool stuff also came the processed “stuff”. I mean how long could REAL apples last on a shelf inside oatmeal if it wasn’t processed in some way? something to think about. Anywho traditional oatmeal is clearly not Paleo (which makes me sad on occasion…but I digress). Im currently reading a book called Wheat Belly by Dr.William Davis and it does a boring but exceptional job of explaining why processed cereals (especially those containing gluten) are very toxic to the digestive system. With that being said, I had to come up with some alternative for my dearly beloved oatmeal.

Disclaimer: there is store bought almond/coconut milk in this recipe which begs to differ if this recipe is indeed 100% Paleo. Rule of thumb, I try to be 100% Paleo, 80% of the time…shall we pause to digest that fancy mathematic equation? ūüôā Basically this recipe has the potential to be 100% approved by the Paleo gods but for now what we have below here is ummmm lets say 93% Paleo. Considering from where I came, I think that’s pretty darn good. If you are so inclined to make your own non processed almond milk (see link below), then this would give you your other 7%.

Recipe: ‚ÄúOatmeal‚ÄĚ Minus the Oats
This recipe for oatmeal Tastes ok but think I will experiment with the addition of other fruit (i.e apples puree leftover from juicing) next time.

Ingredients:
‚Ė∂1/4 cup chopped pecans (or walnuts)
‚Ė∂1/4 cup chopped almonds
‚Ė∂1 tbsp ground flaxseed
‚Ė∂1 tsp ground cinnamon (or 1 tsp apple pie spice)
‚Ė∂1 banana, mashed
‚Ė∂3/4 cup liquid egg whites (or 3 egg whites)
‚Ė∂1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (add more if desired)
‚Ė∂1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:
‚Ź©Blend pecan/almonds in blender or food processor (just enough to crumble them all together).
‚Ź©Whisk together egg whites and almond milk and then stir in nuts, ground flax, mashed banana, vanilla extract, and cinnamon; blend well.
‚Ź©In a medium saucepan, warm the mixture on the stove, stirring frequently, until the ‚Äúoatmeal‚ÄĚ reaches the desired consistency; this should only take a few minutes.
‚Ź©Top with berries, nut butter, seeds, or whatever else your little heart desires.

Also here’s a good link to a discussion on whether or not almond milk is Paleo:
Is Almond Milk Paleo?

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Change is part of our life journey…

Change is part of our life journey and I am ready to embrace change and that begins with PALEO. As we all know its hard to deal  with big challenges with poor health and low energy and that means more stress and problems to the body. I am ready to focus on the positive and so ready to crank things up a gear!!  A sense of wellbeing, more energy and some great sleep sure sounds great to me!  With all this said….   I am ready bloggers to read your posts or stories and what inspires you to want to live a better healthier, happier, Life changing you!

Before I sign off, Thanks to Alia Paige for creating the TalkPaleo  blog site. Awesome Idea and I have to say, that this will be and interesting experience to see in all of you ;-)  Let the Pledge Begin!

Until Next Time… Buen Provencho

The Thing with me & Food…

This thing with me, food and health is quite entertaining…well no not really. It’s actually quite sad. You ever heard that saying, “when you know better you do better”? Ok well I know better but for some reason I refuse to do better. What is that? I read somewhere that the food we eat is designed to be addictive so I’m going to blame my lack of doing better on that for now LOL. Im thinking though, this blogging thing may help me realize that it’s not the food as much as it is me.

Thanks Alia for creating a forum that will help us get on track, stay on track and sometimes even allow us to fall off track….and get back up (without judgement).

This should be fun…or maybe not; but at least it will be healthy. LETS GO PaleoTalk Team!

Nekesha

Welcome to my new blog!

IT’S TIME!

Each of you have expressed interest in starting a PALEO Lifestyle so let’s do it!  I started a 9 WEEK Paleo challenge that I am doing at my Box (CrossFit lingo for gym) and since you want to give Paelo a try, I am challenging you to join me.  This is the first time eating in the Paleo style for two of you so let’s simplify it a bit by creating a TWO week Paleo goal.  Here’s the plan:

1.)    Upon your agreement, I will provide an overview, websites, and some great menus that I will send to each of you.

2.)    We will blog our experiences during the challenge with each other in an effort to support one another and share menus, things we learned, or just have someone to complain to! 

3.)¬†¬†¬† We will each pledge to do the following: a.) We will be honest-no matter what!, b.) We will forgive ourselves if we fail and get right ‚Äúback on the horse‚ÄĚ, and c.) We will open our minds and be willing to learn a new way of living that will not only help our waistlines, reduce the tendency in our community towards high blood pressure and Type II Diabetes, improve our energy levels and over all medical health.¬† So if you are ready, let‚Äôs do it!