Game On – Healthy Eating 101

Back in January I was doing really well participating in 10 in 2010. 10 in 2010 was an online challenge to get healthy in the first 10 weeks in 2010. I was doing good for the first four weeks or so. Then I accepted a job and we moved from Iowa to Indiana. Actively working towards having a healthier body and lifestyle just fell by the wayside.

Game on! I’ve been in my new job for five weeks now and I feel my routines are settling in. It’s time to get back in the saddle.

How are we doing?

Jeff and I managed to continue making almost all of our food from scratch and greatly reduced our intake of meat, fish and dairy. We aren’t vegetarians, but we are close. I found a place on my way to work that sells eggs from happy backyard chickens and ducks. We haven’t found a place to buy local small farm meat, but we have a lead. I also heard there are a local corn mill and a place to buy raw milk. We’ll have to check those out. And I am getting much more physical activity into my days. We are walking distance to the library (and I go every other day because that’s how long DVDs can be checked out) plus having an outdoor job means I am active every day.

Now for the bad news, I have gained four of the six pounds I lost back. Yikes! I also gained some bad habits from my new schedule. I am eating when I come home from work at 4:30 and then also eating dinner and dessert. Plus I’ve been drinking a beer after work every day. I need to break these habits or at least replace them with healthier ones.

What am I changing?

My husband’s weight has never been an issue for him – Lucky. I on the other hand always seem to be between 10-20 lbs above what I consider my ideal weight. Really I would just like to fit back in this pair of pants. I’ve had this pair of pants for years and when I was feeling uber healthy these were loose. Underneath them is my favorite current pair of jeans. They must have a higher waist because they look similar in size, but I can’t button the khaki green pair. So in order to fit back into these pants I am going to start recording what I eat everyday again.

For breakfast I have been eating cereal, which unfortunately is a very processed food. I’m going to make some healthier muffins instead. I’m also going to try eating a bigger lunch at work so I don’t come home ravenous. I will be replacing my beer a night habit with an iced tea a night or possibly joining the green monster fan club. Many of the healthy food bloggers espouse the benefits of green monster smoothies made with spinach, banana and yogurt. I figure it is worth a try. I’m a little doubtful. I don’t think spinach belongs in a smoothie and I don’t really care for banana so we shall see.

Jeff does all the cooking during the week so we sat down and decided on some healthy recipes. All the meals must meet these three goals:
1. Low fat content (go easy on the cheese, butter and oils)
2. High fiber (whole grains, veggies, beans)
3. Protein (tofu, beans, egg)
Find out what we decided on for meals tomorrow in my next post: Filling, Yet Healthy and Delicious Meals.


  1. Good luck! I personally have never tried the green monster thing for the same reason... it just seems wrong. It's actually one of my goals, though. To get around to eating the stuff.
    Might I suggest, instead of eating a really big meal at lunch, maybe separating it out into portions so you can eat less, more often? That is, if your job allows you to take a few quick breaks often. I don't think you have a desk job if you're working as a horticulturist so maybe that wouldn't work out, but eating more often and not eating big meals keeps me full longer, but on less food. :)

  2. Lynette4/16/2010

    I wouldn't be terribly concerned, Foy. You're darn healthy.

    Raw milk -- read this that I posted on eXtension.org tonight, but here's the original release, http://www.uaex.edu/news/april2010/0416Raw_Milk_Illness.htm

    Love, mom

  3. Oh my goodness I have been away from your lovely blog longer than I planned! I am back now, and pleased about that. My husband and I always seem to struggle with eating better. I think one thing that gets us down is feeling like its too expensive to really buy local/organic/etc. I know this isn't true, so now that spring has sprung I hope to find myself at more farmers market taking in springs bounty. I just came across this article(http://www.thekitchn.com/thekitchn/tips-techniques/5-tips-to-making-a-weeks-worth-of-salads-on-sunday-113949) on how to portion out salads for every day of the week. Consuming a good salad at lunch is so helpful but I never seem to get my act together enough to make one. Maybe it will help?

  4. I saw a doctor (who also happens to be Steve's uncle) for the first time since. . . I don't know, ten years? Anyway, he was all, "So, how do you feel about your weight?" And I was all, "Uhhhh." And he was all, "You could stand to lose ten pounds, Fatso McFatty Fatty."
    Well, that's not EXACTLY how he said it, but I was *encouraged* that losing ten pounds would put me in a nice, normal weight range for my height. Which is about what I've gained since I stopped nursing Milo. Maybe I should, you know, DO something about that.

  5. Have you read or listened to the book, Animal Vegetable Miracle, A year of foodlife, by Barbara Kingsolver? Barbara and her family decided to 'live off the local land' for a year. It has not only the story of how that went, but facts and menues and recipes as well. See animalvegetablemiracle.com - I think that is the site. Very interesting and motivating!!!

  6. Okay both of our mothers have expressed worry of raw milk. Who knew it's such a hot topic? We don't plan on drinking it we plan on making cheese with it. During the process of making the cheese the milk will be heated. There are quite a few cheese that require unpasturized milk. So we'll see if we ever even get around to it.

  7. Anonymous4/17/2010

    Hey Foy,

    I bought raw milk twice from Pike's Market, and it was yummy, but you have to drink it quickly before it goes bad. Although perhaps less processed, I don't know for sure that it would be more healthy/help in keeping weight off since the stuff I had was pretty....full of fat. Perhaps buying organic milk without RGBH (or whatever that acronym is/hormones would serve all of your purposes more fully? The raw milk was delicious and I didn't get sick, so maybe for a treat :) (what did mom say about it?)

    Also, I have a request of you if you don't mind...I just put my first food in the ground at our new house, and it was nice, but I realized that I am clueless about gardening since we never really did it at home. Is there a book for gardening, like the Joy of Cooking is for cooking? I want something with a good index where I can look at a plant and see what I need to do to make it happy. I know there's tons of websites, but they are overwhelming me. Also, do you know any food that would like partial to almost full shade? The back yard is pretty shady, but I want to use the space there. Also, any general gardening tips to fix my cluelessness, or things I really shouldn't do that new people often do would be awesome.

    Sorry that got long, guess it's my thing.

    Brother-In-Law Steven

  8. Lynn, I've actually read Animal Vegetable Miracle twice. Once to myself and once out loud to my husband. You're right it's a very ispirational book.

    Check out my other recommnedation http://foyupdate.blogspot.com/2009/10/reduce-climate-change-by-changing-your.html

  9. Steven,

    Shady food plant. Rhubarb is the first thing that comes to mind. You might also look at some of the berries. Blue berries can take some shade, goose berries are an understory bush they would happy in shade. Chives will take some shade, loose leaf lettuce would actually do okay (it'll be slower than advertised on the seed package) as long as the soil is fertile and well drained. In fact any of the leaf crops should do okay like spinach, kale, mustard, collard greens.

    That's all I can think of right now.

  10. Interesting the comments on raw milk. I consumed it most of my growing up years. Many people I knew at the time did. I don't recall any concern or problems. I have thought of trying to find it, but know of no current local source. I wouldn't worry, myself, but that's me. Our bodies have all sorts of bacteria all over and inside us. Antibacterials in soap and other products do not make us more healthy. I belive that a healthy immune system is exposed to all sorts of bugs, nasty and benign, all the time. That's part of the process. As for a healthy diet, I say as wide a variety as possible of unprocessed food.

  11. A. spinach in smoothy IS good - especially with something like pineapple or orange juuice to sweeten it.
    B. raw milk rules. i can drink it and not get sick/explode. crazy. and i tend to have less 'bloat' than when i'm drinking soy.
    C.i'm telling you - steel cut oats! i know you're wierd with the slimy hot cereal - but just slightly chopped up whole oats (use the coffee grinder to chop up whole oats or wheat or whatever) soak it over night and it'll cook in about 5 minutes. add some raisons and eat with honey and raw milk in the am - soooo satisfying.
    i'm just sayin

  12. oh, and i agree with that other poster -
    when i worked 'jobs' i always brought with me 3 or so allocated little things. my coworkers made fun of me.
    'pre lunch' 'lunchlet' 'post lunchlet snack'
    generally consisting of a tupperware of homemade hummus topped with carrots and celery - more veg than hummus, maybe a little cupanoodle (organic low sodium variety - i would not eat those now- use leftover homemade soup) and some kinda crackery protein combo something.

  13. I've started eating my lunches in stages when I'm in the office. It's helping. Only problem is as the weather gets nicer I'll *hopefully* be spending more and more time outside.

    I'll have to do some more reading on raw milk to figure out where I stand. Knowledge is power!

    I will buy steal cut oat and I will try them. At the very least, they will be another interesting baking ingredient.

  14. Anonymous4/24/2010

    I had a green smoothie for breakfast this morning! They are good and they really don't taste like the veggie in question, that is if you find the right ratio. Personally I like Pineapple, Ginger and Kale/Spinach or Blueberries and Red Cabbage. The latter isn't green but it still has a veggie and if you have something against green as a breakfast food it might be good to try.

  15. I second that you really don't taste the spinach... if you don't like banana flavor much you can add just a bit of banana- maybe a 1/4 frozen and bulk up on other frozen fruits like mango or pineapple- I avoid strawberries in my green smoothies because the combined colors ends up kind of brown- and that grosses me out!