I know, due to my excellent photography skills this looks like a cookie.
But it is a muffin. Really.
Feels good to resist! But, things have not been all kittens and rainbows and uneaten baked goods with this diet plan.
I have been feeling really drained and light-headed every afternoon. I tried to eat some more protein, as I said I would, but it hasn't helped. I find it really hard to eat any more vegetables or chicken than I already am. Ugh. I was curious to see how close I was getting to the desired 1200 calories/day, so I found a calorie counting website that I liked, and plopped in the food from my week. I had to use some foods that were "close enough" on the available list of foods, and the others I entered manually with the nutrition info on the packaging. I was a bit shocked to see that I was eating between 600 and 800 calories/day. No wonder I was feeling so crappy!! And I guess it makes sense! The fruits and veggies I am eating don't amount to many calories, so the most I am getting comes from the protein. A chicken breast comes in under 200 calories for every one I could find on the lists, so you can imagine my lunches and dinners are very low-cal. Breakfast is ridiculously low-cal if I don't eat eggs- just fruit and yogurt? My yogurt is 35 cal/serving, and an apple is about 65 cal. Um yeah. Not much there. The only way I could see to increase my calories is to eat more protein, but I just can't do it. I can eat more eggs in the form of egg whites, but again, they are just so unappealing.
The other side-effect of this restrictive diet is I have come to sort of hate eating meals. Every time I think of eating more chicken or more salad or more veggies of any kind it is all just so very gag me with a spoon (sorry to get a little valley girl circa 1986 on you). I get crabby and annoyed when faced with what to eat for lunch or dinner. NOTHING appeals to me. I have tried adding the naughty marinara to ground poultry as I mentioned last post, and also salsa the other night. That does help quite a bit, and is better than just a chicken breast. But still, I am so blah about it all! It is demoralizing and making me a crab to be around. This is why I HATE diets. I hate restrictions and that feeling of deprivation. My bf and his kids are having tacos and I CAN'T EVEN HAVE ONE!??! C'mon! My inner child throws a temper tantrum and all I can do is just sit and watch them eat. I tried chicken tacos with lettuce wraps, but it was a fail. The salsa was too watery, and the lettuce was too big and it was just ick. I ended up going with a plate of shredded lettuce, tomatoes, onions, my ground chicken taco meat and a bit of salsa. Kind of a taco salad without the taco. For lunch the next day, I added salsa directly to the meat and heated it up, put that on my salad and YUM much better. That will be lunch today, too.
My solution to all this is to adjust things a little and add some healthy carbs/starches from the Cycle 2 plan into my breakfast and lunch options. I am going to try oatmeal for breakfast and maybe some brown rice or potato with lunch, or maybe a slice of whole wheat bread. I am still trying to stay lower carb, so portion sizing is important here. I am also going to toss out the "no carbs after 2" rule. I have done some research and most critics can find no scientific bases for this. Most say, it's about the calories you eat, not where the calories come from. Makes sense to me! I will stick to the old "no food after 7 pm rule" though (not a rule on 17 Day Diet). That worked for me the last go-round to avoid ingesting late-night calories. I am also allowing myself 1/2 a bag light popcorn as a snack. It is higher in sodium than is strictly healthy, but I don't get salt from anywhere else other than any processed foods I am eating, which right now is almost none. I have never been one to add salt to any dish that I am cooking or eating.
I am hoping that these additions will bring me up to the correct calories and give me some more dang energy! I haven't walked every day because I just feel like a limp noodle. Glad I didn't burn off too many of those precious calories now.
This plan is still good for getting me back to healthy eating and saying no to bad foods again, but it is just too restrictive for picky-ol' me to be 100% healthy. I will be weighing myself tomorrow morning to see how things are going.
Hope your New Year's commitments are going well out there!