Vending Machines–Cut The Crap

 I attended a conference over the weekend which had  its share of challenges for a girl trying to “Cut the Crap”.  There was dessert after both lunch and dinner and enough emotional stress to make you want to eat as much CRAP as humanly possible!!! I will give them credit and say that I could always have a salad and there were plenty of veggies and low carb items at most meals.  However, there were NO snacks.

In  retrospect, that was probably a good thing because snacks at a conference usually consist of cookies and soda:(  Nonetheless, with all the packing and situating I did just to get there, I did NOT plan ahead and bring my own healthy snacks.

So this hungry girl had to go to a vending machine to get a snack one day…a huge dilemma! What is NOT crap in a vending machine?

That is a loaded question because pretty much EVERYTHING in vending machines are CRAP.  However, some things are better than others.  In the real world, sometimes you have to choose the lesser of the evils.  Yes Divas, Imperfect Progress (slow steps of change wrapped in grace)–Lysa Terkeurst.

What are some of the healthiest choices from a vending machine?

Nuts are usually the best choice however, the sodium content can be a little high.

If you are a chip girl, go for the baked lays.  If there are no baked lays, choose sun chips.

Stay away from rice krispie treats, pop tarts,  and cheese crackers.

Read Fitness Magazine’s article on the 10 Healthiest and Worst vending machine snacks.

I chose Sun Chips and I made a mental note to pack snacks on my next conference.

Have you ever tried to make a healthy choice from a vending machine?

If so, what did YOU choose?

Cut The Crap-Eating Out Tips

Happy Tuesday Divas! How are your “Cut the Crap” efforts coming?  Weekends are hard but sometimes Mondays are even harder in terms of staying on track.

 I JUST posted about planning ahead and alas….I did NOT plan ahead yesterday.  I got home a lot later than usual yesterday because I had a CPR class.  I FORGOT to take out our lean ground beef. Soooo,  I tried my Mother’s method of putting the frozen meat container in cold water for 30 minutes.  NOTHING, still frozen solid.

My children are chanting about how hungry they are and my husband says….”Let’s just go and pick up something”.  Just before the horror music started to play in my head, my oldest daughter asked if she could pick the restaurant since she made an “A” on her math test.

She studied really hard so we let her choose.  MISTAKE! She chose a local diner/dive that sells breakfast 24 hours a day.  This is not my favorite place to eat normally but now that I am “Cutting the Crap” it is soooo NOT on the list.

So we get to the restaurant and slide into the booths.  It takes me at least ten minutes to read the entire menu then decide what I was going to order.  I ended up ordering some ol dry chicken, asparagus and water.   

Let’s just say I left that meal unfulfilled.  However, I DID laugh and talk with my family which is priceless! 

So Divas, learn from my mistake!  Follow these tips when eating out and ENJOY your food:

1.  Research the restaurant BEFORE you go.  (Here we are right back at planning–smh!)  Most restaurants have their menu online.  Most large chains also have the nutritional information and ingredients online as well. (Local dives like where we went…not so much.)

2.  Eat something at home before getting to the restaurant.  This will make passing on the appetizers and bread easier because you won’t be famished.

3.  Drink water.  Free refills are an  easy way to large amounts  of sugar or chemically altered products that are turned into sugar.  For a little flavor, add lemon or lime to your water.  If all else fails remember, drinking water saves you almost $3.00 per meal!

Do you have any tips for eating out while following a healthy meal plan?

Cut the Crap Plan Ahead

Hello Divas!  How did the C-R-A-P cutting go this weekend?

CRAP stands for…Caffeine, Refined Sugar, Alcohol and Processed Foods.  Want to know more about our challenge?  Go HERE.

 Ok so, what IS on the menu?

 Things prepared by human hands NOT a machine!…Whole grains!…..Fruits!…….Veggies!….Lean cuts of meat!

Your challenge this week is to PLAN what you are going to eat before you get hungry. GO TO THE STORE and buy veggies, lean meats, and fruits!  Eating whole foods is not that hard when things are ready when you are ready to eat.  Things get tricky when you are hungry and all the healthy stuff is uncooked, frozen, or simply unavailable.

 Some of you asked me if you would receive a meal plan telling you what to eat.  The answer to that is a resounding NO! We are taking this challenge to get more healthy– not to commit to a fad diet.  You know what you like and what you will realistically eat more than anyone else.  So YOU have to make your food choices.

 Remember, you don’t plan to fail–you FAIL TO PLAN!

I found an excellent article on how to make any recipe “clean” or without the CRAP!  Go here.

 I know some of you may feel like there is NO WAY you can be successful with this whole cutting the CRAP thing.  But I would like to ask you to consider a term I learned from Lysa TerKeurst, Imperfect Progress:  slow steps of change wrapped in grace.  One day at a time Divas!

When you feel challenged remember when we are weak, HE is strong!

“But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)


Cut the Crap 2013 Day 1

Hello Divas! Today is the first day of our Cut the Crap Challenge!  If you have NO idea what I am talking about, click here.  Just as a reminder CRAP stands for caffeine, refined sugar, alcohol and processed foods and we are eliminating them from our diets for 21 days–til January 31, 2013.

I know 21 days sounds like a long time but it actually takes about that long to create a habit.

We have done this challenge before as a class and the results were AH-MAZING! Remember, the point of the challenge is to jump-start your healthy lifestyle changes !!!

Here are some first couple of days tips:

1.  Plan what you are going to eat BEFORE you get hungry!!!

2.  Fill half of your plate up with NON-Starchy veggies (green stuff like spinach)!

3.  Realize that when you stop eating junk, your body actually starts to DETOX!

When you stop any substance that is addictive, your body goes into withdrawal.  Armed with only decaf coffee and NO candy out of my co-workers candy jar, I felt like I was waaaay overdue for a nap at 11:30am! Couple that with some computer issues and I wanted to scream!  I did scream!

Sugar/junk food addiction is REAL y’all.

Know the symptoms of detox/withdrawal so that when they happen you will know that is what it is and not use it as an excuse to stop Cutting the Crap:

•Skin breakouts •Bloating, stomach pains •Headaches •Food cravings •Trouble sleeping, nightmares •Diarrhea and constipation •Fatigue, drowsiness, low energy levels •Irritability •Congestion or Mucus that feels like a cold

Think of it as deciding to dust off a very high ceiling fan in your house for the first time in years. When you start dusting, dust will almost rain down on you making you feel horrible for waiting so long and making it a hard to breathe!  Once the fan is clean, the air clears and you begin to feel better!

The same goes for detoxing! You will feel the ill effects of stirring up all those toxins! Once they’re out you’ll feel better, but the process is SO NOT fabulous!

All that being said, the results of detoxing/”Cutting the CRAP” ARE FABULOUS:

•Clearer sinuses •Weight loss •Clearer skin •More energy •Regular bowel movements •Mental Clarity •Emotional stability / eliminated depression

Good luck cutting the CRAP!

*Consult your physician before starting any exercise or eating plan.

1 Peter 5:10 In his kindness God called you to his eternal glory by means of Jesus Christ. After you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.

New Year New You-Cut the Crap

Ok Divas, it is 2013!  We have been on our cruise and the holidays are behind us!  It is time for us to get serious about our fitness goals and cut the CRAP! “Cut The CRAP”  is  a 21 day challenge to eliminate unhealthy foods from your diet.  Our challenge is a great way to jump-start your healthy eating resolutions AND we will be journeying TOGETHER!

CRAP stands for…

Caffeine –I like to have a cup of coffee in the morning and actually 1-2 cups of coffee or tea per day are not that bad. It is the Pumpkin Spice Lattes, and all the other sugary stuff that people (me included) tend to put in coffee that is the issue. Also, having more than a couple of cups per day can lead to muscle tremors, rapid heartbeat, nervousness, and depression.

Refined Sugar – Just think of EVERYTHING! Just about everything in the American Diet has sugar in it! My beloved Coca-Colas, cakes, candy and just about every packaged food you can buy in a vending machine.

Alcohol – I have always viewed alcohol as empty calories. I am not one of those people who need alcohol to unwind and have a good time! Just turn on music, and I am ready to dance completely sober! At any rate, limiting alcohol in take is a critical part of cutting the crap.

Processed Foods – Most things that come in a box, jar, can or foam packaging from a fast food restaurant are processed. Most processed foods contain bleached wheat flour like white bread (gasp!). White sugar, white rice, white pasta are all processed and should all be avoided-at least during the challenge and then eaten in moderation afterwards.

So what do YOU need to do for our “Cut The Crap” challenge:

1.  Eat things prepared by human hands NOT a machine and drink lots of water:

Whole grains!
Lean cuts of meat!

Don’t even know what a healthy plate looks like?  Go HERE

2.  Write your food down on a food diary OR use an APP for your mobile phone.  Need a food diary?  Go HERE.

3.  You can have one *cheat meal* a week.

4.  If your physician agrees, take a daily fish oil supplement.

5.  Take a steam bath at least twice a week—-Make it fairly hot to sweat out toxins and add some Epsom Salts.  Use a body brush all over, working in the direction of your heart.

 Don’t forget to come on back to class this week!!!! Go HERE for our calendar!

Cut the Crap-Imperfect Progress

Well Divas, it is Monday….AGAIN!  Yay and boooo all at the same time.  We are thankful that we get to see another day yet saddened to get back into the grind of our weeks.  I don’t know about y’all but the weekends are some of the hardest times to follow a healthy eating plan.  Our normal schedule is off, and if you are like me, the weekends are simply packed full!

When Monday arrives, regret about the weekend’s food consumption rears her ugly head.

Regretting makes me feel like giving up:

“I failed so why not just quit?”

“What is the point anyway?”

I am reading the book Unglued by Lysa Terkeurst and one amazing term that she uses is, Imperfect Progress “slow steps of changes wrapped in grace”. I just love the sound of that!  Imperfect progress is a wonderful way to think about any lifestyle change.

Our class is currently in the midst of the Cut the CRAP challenge!  This basically means that we are committing to eating a healthy diet of nutritious foods. A diet of nutritious foods contains limited amounts of : CRAP–(caffeine, refined sugars, alcohol and processed foods).

Each week, we have been focusing on making small changes in our daily diets:  1.  Completing the food detective worksheet, 2.  The Healthy Plate, 3. Don’t Drink all Your Calories. 

This week our challenge is to keep a food journal.  Simply record what you eat and mark off the fruits, veggies, and water intake on the side!  You can use any food journal/tracking system that you would like.  I found a very useful and cute one from fitsugar.  You can download it here

Here are my favorite reasons to keep a food journal:

1.  Keeping a food journal encourages you to focus on your food choices.  We live in a society that demands multi-tasking.  More often than not we overeat because we are focusing on something other than what we are eating. Writing down what I eat in a food diary forces me to focus on what I am doing.

2. When we write down what we are eating, we are more able to  make an honest assessment of what we are really eating and make changes and choices to recommit to our goal to live well.

Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” – Mother Teresa

Let’s all make some imperfect progress this week!

Do you normally keep a food journal?

Cut The Crap-Drinking Problem

As a class, we have taken on the Cut the CRAP challenge. Which basically means that we are committing to eating a healthy diet of nutritious foods. A diet of nutritious foods contains limited amounts of : CRAP–(caffeine, refined sugars, alcohol and processed foods).

Since small changes over time lead to BIG results, we have been focusing on one small change each week. Through this week, we have focused on determining what we are really eating by completing the food detective worksheet and worked on having meals composed of the healthy plate method.

Did you know that depending on what you drink, you could be adding 500-1000 calories to your diet per day?

Our challenge this week is to drink water with and in between our meals. I know it sounds hard but it can be done and your body will thank you for it!

Here are just a few tips on how to drink more water:

1.  Make it a Morning Ritual.  Start your day off with a glass of water.

2.  Add Some Lemon!  I also like to add lime to my water.

3.  Always have a full glass of water near you when you are working. It will give you something to mindlessly sip on when you are brainstorming or need something to do with your hands.

4.  Vanity baby!—When all else fails, think of how healthy and glowing water makes your skin look!

Call me crazy but, I drink more water when I drink out of a straw.  Crazy I know, but I am just NOT a natural water girl.  I am a tried and true Dr. Pepper and Coke girl so I have to get creative when I drink water.

Totally keeping it real here, sometimes drinking water just does not cut it!  In times like those, have ONE GLASS of the beverage you really want.  Savor it by drinking it slowly AND drinking water along with it.

Do you have any don’t-drink-all-your-calories tips?

Cut The Crap-Thoughts on the Edge

Ok so one of the things that is ALWAYS a challenge when you are trying to eat healthier is eating out.  Yesterday after class I went out with the tenth grade girls that I mentor from church.  They chose…wait for it…CHILIS!

Yep, I thought the same thing you are thinking…How can you Cut the Crap THERE.  Well let me inform you that it was NOT easy.  They do have a “lighter fare” menu but the bottomless chips and fried cheese were really hard to resist. ( If you have no idea about Cut The Crap, go here.)

I am happy to say that I was successful in NOT eating the chips and such.  I even ordered from the lighter fare menu and substituted broccoli for the rice.

All should have been well right?  WRONG, when my meal came I was instantly depressed.  The chicken was soooo dry and that broccoli was just bland broccoli.  I sat back and watched all of the girls giggle and order more soft drinks while twisting pasta around their forks and I pouted.  (Chilis does have other options on their “lower fare” menu so perhaps next time I will try something else.)

Here were my thoughts at the table:

Stupid “Cut The Crap”.

“How much longer of this CRAP?”

“I could have fixed that chicken and bland broccoli at home and it probably would have tasted better!”

When the chocolate molten cake was delivered at the table, I thought my head just might explode right there.

I didn’t have any of that either.  It wasn’t that hard to resist it since I wasn’t hungry anymore but  I was just plain unfulfilled :(.

On a brighter side, I did engage in lots of conversation and I enjoyed being with the girls.

All of this helped me see that a part of my mind (Rational Katina) agreed to this whole challenge thing but it left another part of my mind (Victim Katina) feeling deprived.

It is this mind conflict that may cause us to stumble when making changes.  The rational part of us understands what we are doing and why but there are emotions tied into how we feel when we can’t have what we want.

Soooo, I had to remind myself:

“Craving the processed and sweet stuff is natural and the cravings will decrease over time.”

“Eating out may require a little more research than it did before) (Some restaurants have tasty healthy options and some do not.  Scanning the menu online prior to going may be a good thing to do!)

But most of all:

“I am NOT being deprived.  I am Choosing to Cut the Crap.”

Divas, although we are taking the Cut The Crap challenge for 21 days, the purpose is to help jump-start a lifestyle change.  Changing  your lifestyle means to replace unhealthy habits with healthy ones, (like exercise, good self-care, and eating nutritious foods) and to do so consistently. It isn’t something you do for a week or two, only to revert back your old ways – a lifestyle change redefines who you are.

Since we are redefining who we are, make sure you download the “Healthy Plate” to help redefine what your plate looks like!  The weekend is coming and we want to be prepared!

You can enter comments here or discuss Cut the Crap on our Meetup Page!