Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Eating Clean... again

So, I haven't been paying much attention to nutrition lately (see last post), which makes me feel awful since I am pregnant and all. But the past few days I have been re-reading The Eat Clean Diet and looking through the Eat Clean Cookbook. Its good stuff, folks. I really miss eating that way.

The books motivate you to eat as healthy as you can, even if you're not eating "clean" all the time. Just looking through the cookbook is motivating. Everything is so fresh and natural.

I'm not gonna lie, it is hard work because it is so different from the way that most of us eat (lots of fat, sugar, and processed foods). But its worth the effort, even if you can't give it 100%.

I'm going to start trying more of the recipes and I will post the best ones here as I go. Good luck to you all in your efforts to be healthy.

There are thousands of clean recipes out there, but these are just a few from, which is a magazine based on the Eat Clean Diet.

Oatmeal Protein Pancakes

Citrus-ginger Salad

Berry Yogury Parfait

Walnut-crusted Salmon

Packed Pasta

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Eating in the first trimester

The first trimester of pregnancy is crazy. I feel like a completely different person. I'm having extreme food aversions and then some cravings as well. It is a lot worse this time around than it was with Paige or with my second pregnancy.

When I'm deciding what to eat, I don't think, "what would be healthy?" Or "what sounds good?" Its no longer a battle between wanting to eat crappy foods and knowing I should eat healthy foods.

I now think, "what would taste OK if it came back up?" Or "what could I eat that doesn't make me want to gag just thinking about it?"

So basically, I'm in survival mode here. I just eat things that don't sound disgusting. Yesterday it was Minestrone soup. Today its watermelon and Macaroni & Cheese.

Who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Change of plans

Well, I never reached my goal weight. Bummer. And now that I'm pregnant I obviously wont be triying to lose weight. So now my goal will just be to eat as healthy as I can and exercise more so that I can have a healthy pregnancy and not gain more weight than I should.

I am thrilled about this pregnancy, so I'm going to try not to be discouraged about the extra 5-10 lbs I'm starting out with. I think I will post my belly pics on here and maybe this can be my pregnancy journal. Wish me luck for a healthy pregnancy!!

Saturday, June 20, 2009


Its amazing how your body can get used to pretty much anything. I have been eating about 1200 calories a day for 10 days now. I usually eat more like 2000 (or more). At first it was hard and I felt hungry all the time, but now I feel great and I get full really fast. I havent weighed myself in a while, but my clothes are definitely getting looser. Yay!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


I'm going to post my "before" pics at the end of the two weeks, along with my "after" pics. I took the pictures, but I feel weird posting them now. But I definitely will post them in 2 weeks.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Let's get serious

Ok folks, I have a deadline. In a little over 2 weeks Nate's family is all getting together to go boating and such. The thought of wearing a swimsuit in front of everyone right now is scary. Ok, terrifying. And I don't want to hide in baggy clothes either.

I am determined to lose about 5 lbs in the next couple weeks. I'm not going to do anything ridiculous. But I am going to workout a lot more and I will cut my calories down to 1,200 - 1,300 each day.

As extra motivation I will be posting pictures. I am about to take a "before" photo in my swimsuit. On Monday June 29th I will take the "after" photo. Things are about to get awkward around here.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Counting calories and Kashi

This dry erase board is what I use to count calories. Its great for accountability because anyone who walks in the house can see exactly what I've eaten that day. Like anyone really cares... but I just feel so proud when there are only healthy foods on my board for the day.

I am a big fan of Kashi Cereals. Sure, I'd rather eat the more sugary cereals because they taste better, but they are also worthless. They don't have as much nutritional value and you're hungry 10 minutes after you eat them. Kashi's "Go Lean" is really great because it has 13 grams of protein in one serving! Most cereals have almost ZERO protein. Eating Clean is about eating protein and complex carbs at every meal, so this cereal works out great. I also throw some frozen berries on top to make it better. Walmart just had Kashi cereals half off last week and I went a little crazy. Let's just say I could feed a small army.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Toning your arms

Everyone wants toned arms. I know I do. I have always noticed that when I start getting back into weight training, my arms start to tone up quickly. For women, it really doesn't take much time to get nice arms if you are consistent (which is my biggest problem).

Anyway, I just read a little blurb about Cameron Diaz and it really motivated me to be more committed with my weight lifting. Check it out...

To get her ultra-toned arms, Cameron Diaz works with trainer Teddy Bass. Looking to get your own guns of steel? Bass recommends a three-step arm workout:
- reverse flies (15-20 reps done by stepping into a lunge and raising arms parallel to shoulders)
- tricep kickbacks (10 reps per arm done in a lunge, leaning forward with a flat back and extending weights behind close to the elbows)
- bicep curls (15-20 reps)
"Arms shape up faster than any other body part. You'll see changes after two to three weeks!" says Bass.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Not much to report

I've been doing pretty well with counting calories and Eating Clean, but not so well with working out. I know I've lost some weight recently, but I dont know how much because I dont weigh myself very often. I think its best to just see how your clothes are fitting.

I wish I had something cool to say, but I just dont. Hmm...

Monday, May 11, 2009

Ashley's favorite things

Have you ever seen Oprah's "Favorite Things" show? It's cool huh? Yeah. This is just like that, except I'm not gonna give you anything at all. Except knowledge. And actually that's the best gift of all.

These are things that I'm loving right now:

1. Sweet potatoes
These got a bad rap with all the low-carb craziness, but the Eat Clean author raves about them. They are very nutritious, low in calories, and DELICIOUS. You don't have to put anything on them. They are so good on their own. I just bake them in the oven or I make sweet potato fries (baked) which are delish. So try them out!
2. Salad Spritzers
I like the Balsamic Vinaigrette kind. I spray it on lots of stuff- not just green salad.
3. Protein shakes
They are an awesome and tasty way to get your protein. I used to have such a hard time eating enough protein and with Eating Clean you combine protein and complex carbs at every meal. This is a good alternative when you can't think of any kind of protein that sounds appealing. I have a good quality protein mix from Costco and I use half milk and half water (to save some calories), plus a frozen banana. Its great.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hi Ho, Hi Ho...

Back to the gym I go.

I've been slacking folks. Really slacking. I was doing so well with running about 4 times a week at the gym and doing weights. I'm not sure what happened. But don't you worry- I'm back in the game.

P.S. Does anyone else prefer running on a treadmill as opposed to outside? I think I'm the only one.

Here's what I hate about running outside:

1. Its about 100 times harder.

2. The weather isn't always ideal.

3. You feel like everyone is staring at you.

4. Its a lot harder on your joints.

5. You can't track distance, calories, incline etc as easily.

6. You can't watch T.V. to distract yourself. (My gym has a T.V. on every machine.)

7. It sucks.

Who's with me? No one? Ok, cool.

I blame...


Ok- not really. But imagine for a minute that your garage was FULL of every candy bar and snack food imaginable. Yeah, that is what I have to live with. Nate has a vending business on the side and he keeps his stock in our garage. At first, I was cool with it. He was really serious about it and he would say, "This is not our candy. Its for the business." I was like, "Sure, no problem." Well, slowly but surely we (mostly me) started to relax a little bit. A candy bar here, a little bag of cookies there. And all of a sudden... what the hell! I've gained like a million pounds. Yep.

Needless to say, Nate will now be moving his entire stock to a hidden location. Phew. Let's try this again.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Getting back on track

The past few weeks I've been slowly losing my motivation. I haven't been thinking much about my food choices. Now I'm miserable. Maybe that word is a little dramatic, but my clothes are all tight and I have like 2 outfits that I feel comforable in right now. I currently weigh 10 lbs more than I did in December.

Up until December I was doing really well with counting calories everyday and working out 4-5 times per week. I got down to a weight that I hadn't been since I was about 16. Then I got pregnant and developed a fear of exercize. Even though I knew it was irrational, I was afraid that I would somehow hurt the baby if I worked out too hard and I didn't know exactly what "too hard" was. So I stopped working out completely and stopped counting calories as well. Then the holidays came around and I pigged out. The next thing I knew, I had gained 10 pounds and I wasn't even past the first trimester. After my miscarriage in January (which was obviously not caused by exercize) all I was left with was FAT. No baby. Just fat. Thanks.

During the first few weeks of this blog I lost about 5 pounds by counting calories and exercizing. Then I stopped counting calories and started Eating Clean. I still believe that Eating Clean is the best way to eat, but I am a person who needs some limits. Counting calories has always worked for me. It helps me to know how I'm doing all day long and it keeps me focused. I can still have some treats, but that might mean that I have to stop eating by 7 pm or so if I've used up all my calories for the day.

So I am back to counting calories, but I will be doing my best to Eat Clean (natural, unprocessed) as well. Some people think counting calories is such a pain and so restrictive, but it works. You might think you're not eating that much, but when you right it all down and add it up its a real wake-up call. So that's my plan for now.

I know how to lose weight. I've done it before. It just comes down to making sacrifices. Its hard, but I know its worth it. But its still hard. Really hard. But its worth it. (If you can't tell, this entire post has basically been a pep talk for me.) So really... I'm gonna do this. Really.

PS. This is a good website for tips and motivation:

Friday, April 10, 2009


Yeah, you know what I'm talking about.
Matti... my hat goes off to you.
You are a much stronger woman than I am.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Let's try something new...

Ok, so I love Eating Clean and I'm doing well with choosing healthy meals, but I just can't seem to limit my treat consumption. I eat super healthy all day, then at night I feel like I NEED something like chocolate or ice cream. And it also seems like there are treats everywhere I go.

So I'm finally going to try something that was suggested to me by my friend, Matti. She swears by it and I'm sure it works. Its not going to be easy but I'm going to give it my best. All you do is just limit treats to one day a week. She chose Saturdays and that's what I'm going to do also. Nate is going to do it with me so that will make it easier. I have been treat-free for 2 days so far.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Here's a trick...

When you really want to eat junk food, and you feel like you are about to cave- just drink a TON of water until you feel so full that eating doesn't sound so good. I just discovered this today. I feel like I'm gonna explode, but at least I'm not eating junk. Man, this is hard. I just wish I could eat whatever I wanted. Is this gonna get easier? I'm not sure.

This was me about 5 minutes ago.

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Basics of Eating Clean (in a nutshell)

Eat small meals, five to six times a day. This will help satisfy hunger, plus leave room for another small meal in two to three hours. Your metabolism will be on high all day! As a tip, try to keep each meal between 300 and 400 calories and read nutrition labels to give you a hand.

Combine right. Eat lean protein (e.g., fish, chicken, turkey and flank steak) and complex carbohydrates (e.g., whole grains, fruits, vegetables) together at every meal. This super-charged combination keeps metabolism balanced and insulin levels in check.

Portion control. The golden rule: Getting clean food is just part of the full clean eating picture – you have to apply the basic principles of serving sizes, too. Although all food servings are not created equal, Tosca Reno, author of the Eat-Clean Diet states in her book that following these simple rules can help you navigate the right portion sizes for your needs: A protein serving should be the size of your palm; complex carbs from whole grains and starches is the amount you can hold in a cupped hand; and complex carbohydrates from fruits and veggies is the amount you can hold in two hands cupped together.


Eating Clean has been a life-saver for me. I finally feel like I am in control of my diet and my health. The best part is that I am definitely losing weight, although I don't have a scale, so I can't say how much I've lost. I am just so excited to be seeing results and feeling so healthy.

My birthday is coming up, but we celebrated it over the weekend because Nate is in Vegas all week for work. He got me these 2 books and I am so excited about them.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

"Clean" Meals

I just thought I'd share a few of the things I've been eating lately. At first I really thought that Eating Clean would not be very pleasant because typically, foods that are super healthy are not as tasty. But I have discovered a lot of really healthy foods that are also delicious.


Option #1: Oatmeal

Not the instant kind. I make it with cinnamon, vanilla, flaxseed, a little bit of honey, and frozen berries from Costco. It is really good! And a serving of plain oatmeal is 150 calories for a large bowl.

Option #2: Oatmeal Pancakes

These are really good and healthy. I put applesauce and berries on top instead of syrup. It really is good. I promise. I made some changes to the original recipe, so here is my version. I think its better. :)

1/3 cup all-purpose flour and 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
2/3 cup quick cooking oats
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk mixed with about 1 TB lemon juice (equivalent to buttermilk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 egg
1 tsp cinnamon

Place everything in a food processor and pulse until pretty smooth.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/3 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot. (With applesauce on top.) I also did some with bananas and blueberries in the mix! Yum!


Option #1: Whole Wheat Pita with Tuna Salad

I make a tuna salad with Albacore tuna, chopped celery, a couple sliced grapes, dried cranberries, nuts, and a little bit of Miracle Whip.

Option :2: Light Egg Salad with Whole Wheat Pita or Bread

Here is the Egg Salad recipe.


Option #1: Stir Fry with Chicken, brown rice, and veggies from Costco

Self explanatory

Option #2: Salmon with brown rice and veggies

Costco has pretty good prices on Salmon. We make it with Johnny's seasoning, lemon juice, dill, etc. There are lots of good recipes out there.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Deep Thoughts, by Ashley

I have been slowly implementing the Eat Clean way of life, which I think is good because trying to change everything all at once is overwhelming. I really believe that "Eating Clean" is the best way you can eat. When you read the book, it just makes sense. Its all about eating as natural and non-processed as you can. And also about eating the right portions. I know that Heavenly Father wants us all to take care of our bodies the best we can. And I believe that this way of eating is the best way I have ever heard of. I know everyone says this, but its really not a diet at all. Its just a more healthy way of eating.

Just think about the way this country is heading with obesity, heart disease, etc. Its really scary. And more than that, I think it is immoral. That sounds a little harsh, but I'm directing this at myself also. It is easy to judge people in the world who abuse drugs or alcohol. We might think, Wow, that's messed up. I would never do that. But what about those who abuse food? It is just another dependency... a method of coping with life, or handling stress. But it happens to be more socially acceptable than drugs or alcohol. I'm not saying that being overweight means you are a bad person or something, because I am just as guilty as anyone else of "abusing food" to some degree. But I just think we should all try harder to take care of ourselves. And for many people, that means getting educated about how to eat healthy, and how to exercise. It is worth taking the time to learn.

It is so frustrating to me when people just accept that they are overweight and stop trying to improve. That is not the way we should live our lives. I completely understand that losing weight is difficult. It takes a lot of discipline and sacrifice. But we should always be trying to be healthy. To just give up and eat crap all the time is not what Heavenly Father would want for us.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

I suck

I'm so bummed that I haven't been doing well with this. My motivation goes up and down constantly. Right now, I'm feeling very motivated because I'm sick to death of all of my clothes being tight. Is that the worst feeling or what? Aaahhh!

Monday, February 23, 2009


Ok, eating the same thing everyday sucks, so I'm on to other strategies...
I've been doing not great in the diet area because somehow there have been lots of treats shoved in my face lately. Ok, maybe I'm the one shoving them in my face, but you get the idea. I eat healthy meals, but too many treats.

On a more positive note, I've been keeping up with weight training and running, and I'm actually starting to like it. Running is definitely getting easier. I run for about 30 minutes, and then walk for 20. Running is such a great workout. I can tell it's really effective. I'm going to keep it up, and I think I will enjoy it more and more.

In the healthy diet department- I have been eating a bit too much, but I'm also starting to adopt the Eating Clean lifestyle, which I really think is going to change things for the better.

First of all, I've started eating a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, and I think its a great idea because it really does keep you full for a long time. The author of the book is all about oatmeal for breakfast. Its really healthy, and low-calorie, and you can mix it up by adding different fruits and stuff. I have to admit, it was hard for me to give up cereal for breakfast. My favorite cereals are Special K with Strawberries, Multigrain Cheerios, and Honey Bunches of Oats with Cinnamon, which are pretty good choices, but just not as good as oatmeal. The only real problem with cereal is that it doesn't keep me full for very long at all. So now I really feel like I'm starting my day the right way.

For dinner I've been making Stir Fry, with lots of vegetables, chicken, low sodium soy sauce, and brown rice. I really enjoy it, and it is very healthy.

So if I could stop eating treats, things would be great. Still working on that.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Something new

Yesterday I hosted a small luncheon at my house for a monthly Relief Society group. One of the women that came said she couldn't eat anything because she was on a crazy diet.

So I asked her about it, and she said that actually quite a few women in our ward are on this same diet. This is how she described it...

For 6 weeks, you eat this everyday:

1 grapefruit
1 apple
5 oz. of lean meat
1 cup of vegetables

Ok, that's like 400 calories. Maybe 500 at the most. Wow. So I was thinking, hmm... I think that's called starvation, but anyway... it got me thinking that maybe I really need a strict eating schedule for a while. Not something with extremely few calories, but just something that is a routine so that I don't have to even think about what to eat. I will just have it all planned out. I haven't been eating very well lately, and I know I need a change. I think this will help me get back on track.

So for the next week, I'm going to eat this everyday:

1 bowl of healthy cereal + skim milk = 225 calories
1 yogurt = 100 calories
1 can of Progresso soup = 200 calories
1 apple = about 80 calories
1 Slimfast bar (to help with my chocolate addiction) = 220 calories
1 serving of brown rice with black beans and vegetables = about 250 calories
1 bowl of vanilla almond oatmeal = 160 calories

This adds up to about 1250 calories, which I think is a good amount.

So I will do this for a week, and if it works out well, then I will come up with a new routine for the next week, so that I don't get super bored with these foods. Wish me luck.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Chocaholism and Night Eating

I haven't been doing so great the past few days. Lately, I have been feeling an uncontrollable need for chocolate- like all the time. Something is wrong here. And its not helping me in my journey.Also, does anyone else have a problem with eating at night? I have always struggled with this. I usually eat very healthy all day long, and then something crazy happens around 8pm or so. I just lose all control. Am I alone here? I really believe that if I could stop eating in the evening, I would not struggle with my weight at all.
So... does anyone have suggestions? How do you keep from eating too much at night?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Eating Clean

I've been reading this book called The Eat Clean Diet, and its pretty cool. It's all about eating super healthy, but not counting calories or cutting out entire food groups. It really isn't a "diet" because its not a short-term, crazy thing. It makes perfect sense. I'm learning a lot from it, and it really gets you motivated to just eat more healthy. I would recommend it .
The biggest thing I've taken from it so far is to drink tons of water. I'm always trying to drink more, but it's hard to force it down sometimes. But I know it does make a difference, and it makes everything run smoothly. Plus, it makes you feel full, so that's helpful.

Monday, February 9, 2009



Havana Salad

This recipe is from the "Eat Clean" diet. I made it today and it was really good! Especially for a super healthy salad.


1 cup avocado, peeled and diced
1 cup Roma tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp cumin, ground
1/4 tsp black pepper, ground
4 cups brown rice, cooked
15 ounces black beans, cooked, rinsed and drained
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

In a large bowl, combine the avocado, vinegar, olive oil, cumin and black pepper, and then toss.
Now add the rice, tomatoes, beans, parsley and cilantro, and mix thoroughly.
Let the salad chill in the refrigerator before serving.

YIELD: Makes 6 servings

NUTRIENTS PER SERVING: Calories: 277 Fat: 7g Carbs: 45g Protein: 9g Cholesterol: 0 mg

Sunday, February 8, 2009


I've lost about 2 lbs so far. Not a lot, but its a start! Stay tuned for more updates. And maybe a "before" pic.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Kettle Corn... and other nonsense.

Awesome. This light version of Kettle Corn has just 225 calories in the entire bag. Not that I would eat the entire bag by myself. Who would do that.... right?

In other news, I'm doing well with working out regularly and eating healthy. Ya know- eating less than you normally would is a big sacrifice. It sucks sometimes. The decision to make that sacrifice is really hard when you've been so used to eating whatever you want. Over the holidays, I basically pigged out. Now I have to completely change my mindset and realize that if I eat whatever I want, I will continue to gain weight, which will make me miserable.

The good news is, making the sacrifice to eat smaller portions, and healthier foods gets easier with time. When you get into good habits, junk food starts to seem even junkier, and being sedentary starts to seem even sendentarier. Don't you think?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

So far

I'm only a few days into this, but I'm doing well so far. I've been staying under my calorie limit, and I've been doing Turbo Jam also. I just got it in the mail on Friday, and I like it. Today I will be running at the gym. I'm sure most people already know this, but I've really learned lately how crucial it is to have good music to listen to when you're doing cardio. It really helps me to stay motivated and sometimes I even forget that I'm working out.

Here are some songs from my workout playlist:
(some are on my blog playlist, if you want to hear them)

Shake it- Metro Station
We're in Heaven (techno)- DJ Sammy
Cry for you (techno version)- September
Hot and Cold- Katy Perry
Disturbia- Rihanna
SOS- Rihanna
Umbrella- Rihanna
No One- Alycia Keys
Hips Dont Lie- Shakira
La Tortura- Shakira

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Here we go...

OK, I'm scared now. Even if no one reads this, ever, it is still intimidating to talk (or type) openly about weight loss struggles. But I'm a pretty open person, so hopefully this won't be too difficult. Here is the main reason I started this blog: Even though I was only pregnant for a couple months, I mysteriously gained about 5 lbs, during that time, which makes a big difference for my small-ish frame. OK, it wasn't so mysterious. Its called eating more calories than I was burning, for an extended period of time. Pretty simple.

So here's my goal:

I want to lose about 10 lbs. BUT, I don't want to be "flabby-skinny." You know what I'm talking about. A person could lose 10 lbs by diet alone, but there is a good chance that person would still not look fit and healthy. Its one thing to lose weight, but its a whole different thing to lose weight, while firming up and building muscle. It takes much more effort, and since you're building muscle, you gain some muscle-weight in the process, so it takes more time as well. So basically, my goal is to lose about 10 lbs, but also firm up my muscles. I guess the second part is not very measureable. Oh well.

Here is the plan:

For cardio, I'm going to run at the gym 2 or 3 days a week, and then also do cardio dvds 2 or 3 days a week (alternate days). For toning exercises, I'm going to get back into my gym routine with free weights, machines, and medicine balls. Side Note: I just read an article about how running = abs like this. So yeah... I guess that's gonna be me. :)
As far as diet, I am going to try to eat no more than 1500 calories a day. Any less than that, and I will go crazy. Believe me, I've tried. Doesn't this look delish? Hmm...
I would take a "before" picture, but that would be humiliating. Well, maybe I will consider it.

A possible problem with this plan, is that I (or I should say "we") will begin trying to get pregnant again in about 2 months, maybe less. If I become pregnant (cross your fingers), then this blog will have to be put on hold. But I really want to lose this weight before I get pregnant so that I will have less to lose after my pregnancy. Makes sense, right?