Friday, December 30, 2011

A Toast to the New Year

The Riviera Maya was outstanding and much needed. A week full of indulgence: drinks, fresh food, afternoon snoozes, intimate time with the love of my life while being entertained and soaking up the sun.

It was incredibly simple to stay on the Primal diet with the variety of food they offer. I had fresh fish every day, tons of delicious vegetables and fruits - smoothies were frequent and often. Drink of choice: Disaronno on the rocks (9 carbs/oz). Desserts were divine. They fired up fruit (peach and banana) flamb├ęs and Mayan coffee for our table. If you ever visit the Palace resorts, you must try the Mayan coffee - fantastic!

*Picture is view from our concierge suite.

This was a hard year:

I worked very hard at a job that I wasn't appreciated or respected. Not going to go into much detail here as I'm in a better place now.

Mark and I got a puppy...we had no idea what we were getting into, but we wouldn't change a thing. I love my little gremlin Gizmo.

I found the Paleo/Primal lifestyle and it has changed me for the better. I used to get so angry at myself for abusing my body the way I did. Binging on junk, not exercising and just taking my health for granted. Getting pissed off at anyone that cared enough to say something to me. I didn't know how to fix it and I didn't know where to look. Thanks to my friends we stumbled onto Paleo and I haven't looked back.

Looking forward to 2012
I'm writing this before a holiday weekend. Everyone who hasn't taken today off is in a cheerful mood. I'm currently working at my Dream Job - succeeding through the grueling interview process from November when I had 6 interviews for 2 different positions.

*Dream Job = Administrative Services Specialist, managing existing programs and centers (related to physician training, healthcare and research) and launching new ones for the University. I don't supervise anyone and I don't want to (last position I did that and found out I'd rather manage myself).*

By God's grace, and a good measure of my own, I managed to secure this wonderful opportunity that has huge growth potential have an amazing and supportive supervisor - we are a great team.

I plan on staying on the Paleo/Primal bandwagon and proving my doctor wrong ("Everyone that does that diet quits after a year and gains it all back"). Not to mention all of the other obvious benefits that I've already repeated in other posts.

I hope to keep blogging as often as I can. November and December have been a whirlwind between going through the interview process, exiting a position/training others, taking on a new positions/getting training from others, not knowing what I'm doing in the new position (getting more comfortable everyday), going to Mexico, going to Chicago for my Birthday and the holidays with friends and family.

This new position seems like it will keep me pretty busy and challenge me every day so I will blog updates/tips/recipes/answer email questions when I can.

I hope you have a healthy and prosperous 2012. Let's reign in the New Year right: Paleo/Primal style.

Health, wealth and happiness to all.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Celebrating the Holidays

This year I found a fantastic recipe in Cooking Light Magazine for Almond Cookies. They have 6 ingredients and are so simple and delicious! See for yourself:

  • 2 cups blanched almonds (save 24 blanched almonds)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 4 tsp lemon rind
  • 1 egg
  • Dash of salt
  • Cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325. In a food processor pulse the blanched almonds until finely ground. Add the sugar, lemon rind, egg and salt and mix until dough forms a ball in the processor. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and shape the dough into 1" balls. Sprinkle cinnamon over all of the almond balls evenly and then press a blanched almond into the top (see picture). Bake for 16 minutes and then let cool on wire racks.

These had the most amazing texture and the lemon, cinnamon and almond combined were just plain tasty. Perfect with tea or coffee.

I saved money at the store by purchasing regular almonds and blanching them myself. This process took an hour, but it was worth it and I didn't mind with Christmas movies playing, the fire place roaring and my Christmas tree glowing. Oh wait, it's almost Thanksgiving?! Oh well! I'm losing a week out of my favorite time of year in Mexico so I'm rejoicing early.

My family will be enjoying these Paleo/Primal friendly treats this year.

Happy Christmas Thanksgiving readers!


Friday, November 18, 2011

An encouraging email...

Last night I received an email from someone who follows my blog, thanking me for writing about Paleo/Primal and how she is doing following the lifestyle. Thank you for your email - it is encouraging to know people are actually reading my blog and that I'm not just writing for my Mom (Hi Mom!) and friends.

24 Days until the Riviera Maya and I'm not doing as well on my strength training as I would've liked.

Here's why:
Mark (husband) is currently on a surgery rotation in medical school. He works 18 hour days - everyday - with an occasional day off. This means that on top of my full time job and taking care of Gizmo, I need to do everything else from paying the bills, to cleaning, cooking, errands, etc. Because all he can do is eat, sleep, find time to study, and work. This doesn't leave much time to exercise so I've been strict with my diet, because I gotta eat!

I just spent the past 3 weeks prepping and interviewing for my Dream Job - and I got it!!!! So I've been very stressed with that, not to mention I was asked to interview for another position so I had a total of 5 interviews in a couple weeks.

Since I haven't been exercising as much, being strict with food and under a lot of stress I'm weighing in at 133lbs and my clothes are falling off. I need to go shopping this weekend (darn!). I'm not skinny fat, just skinny skinny. I need to get some workouts in now that Mark will be done with a crazy surgery rotation and I landed my perfect job. Wahoo!!


Monday, November 14, 2011

Is Paleo a diet or not?

Paleo is confusing for people. At first glance, the concept of eating like our paleolithic ancestors is so different from our norm. The norm being what the media and money driven companies have created over the past few decades.

Confused people come online for answers and can easily find their way into more confusion. I did. Once site would say to eat this, another that. Work out like this or try it like that. Paleo is a diet, no Paleo is NOT a diet. Wait a minute. What the heck am I supposed to do?!

Is Paleo a diet?
Yes and no. Yes, as in the technical sense that the actual word "diet" means in relation to food. When Paleo bloggers/writers stress that it isn't a diet we mean that it isn't a "fad diet." A fad diet is something we hear about a celebrity doing to lose a large amount of weight quickly that everyone tries for a week or two before they are on to the next fad diet.

How do I "go Paleo?"
Make Paleo choices. Choose to eat more meat, vegetables, fruit, and fat. Choose to not eat grains and legumes. Choose to go for a walk this afternoon. Choose to get an extra hour of sleep tonight instead of watching that reality show you don't really care for.

Choose to feel better, because you will.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Stress and 32 Days til Paradise

Remember my post from a couple weeks ago about why I haven't been posting as much....well it's still going on and I will hopefully have an outcome next week. This "project" has turned into two potential opportunities, which have been eating up my spare time and stressing me out. My face hates my stress = lots of little pimples. Yuck.

I truly cannot wait until this week is over so I can blog more and have a pimple free face again. Hopefully my efforts will be rewarded - I can't wait to share with you all if they are!

Have you guessed yet...? :o)

Meanwhile....32 DAYS UNTIL I'M ON A BEACH! I'm not excited or anything.

Picture on right is the view from our room during the Honeymoon. We are going to the same resort with good friends. Wahoo! More pictures to come!