2 minute Chimichurri Sauce

Chimichurri Sauce

There was the most amazing lightning storm all around us last night.

Tampa is known as “The Lightning Capital of the World”. In reality it gets the most thunderstorms for North America. If the season was longer maybe it truly would be the most for the world but at least it can hold the title for North America.

It rains a lot in Florida in the summer, which isn’t such a big deal since it helps cool off the afternoons. Plus, it just puts on a good show since it’s not just a drizzle, but it’s typically a big storm that passes through for a bit. You always have to remember to leave your windows up!

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I did a FB live video of the lightning storm to show off all of Mother Nature’s glory. I had been trying to capture the lightning on Snapchat but it was just too tough to get it at the right moment.

Beside the thunderstorms this summer, I have been enjoying the herbs we have in various containers on the lanai and ones planted outside of it. My dad planted some parsley and it just exploded. We have so much of it so I couldn’t resist the urge to grab a massive handful and make a chimichurri with it.

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I also needed to grab some stuff at the grocery store, but the garden fresh parsley was so great to have in there.

A traditional chimichurri is hand chopped, but this version is for us lazy/in a rush folks. I think a hand chopped sauce is stunningly beautiful, but I don’t often have time for that. This blender sauce makes the ingredients just as fine and smooth, but the appearance is different. This makes it look more like a pesto, than a sauce that includes chopped ingredients that are then mixed into an oil.

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I love that this is Paleo and Whole30 complaint too! It adds so much flavor without all the typical no no’s that you have to avoid- soy, sugar, dairy, gluten, etc.

I have even used it as a zesty salad dressing one night. Not the intended use for it, but it was still dang good. I like things with a bit of zip, especially when doing Whole30. I think that the lack of sugar makes me crave the spice and heat from salsas, hot sauces, and things like this.

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You’ll be adding this vibrant green sauce to everything you eat now. It’s time to fire up the grill, slap a steak on it, and then drizzle this all over that sucker.

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2 minute Chimichurri Sauce 

Makes about 2 cups of sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 large bunch fresh cilantro
  • 1 large bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 Cup fresh oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt 
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1 Fresno chile or (red) jalapeño, de-stemmed and de-seeded
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Process

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blend until all the ingredients are finely chopped and incorporated. Store in an air-tight container.
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Quick Meat Sauce with Zucchini Noodles

Quick Meat Sauce with Zucchini Noodles

So a few weeks ago Autumn and I went to a farmer’s market a few miles away from my dad’s house, where we are staying. We picked up a few things, but the big hit of the day was the honey we picked up.

She sampled a few kinds and picked out the kind that liked the most and every few days I give her a big spoonful of the local honey. It’s a special, healthy treat that is great for preventing allergies here.

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Well, last night she asked for ‘her bear’ and I gave her a bit of the honey on a spoon. She asked for a bit more and I gave in since the first bit was not that much. And then trouble happened. She started to lose some off the side of the spoon, but she caught it in her hand. She was so proud of herself! And then while she licked it off her hand, she spilled it on the floor, and as the dog pounced to lick it up, she continued to spill it on their heads.

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So the dogs enjoyed the honey off the floor and off each other’s heads. le sigh

And that just about summaries my life.

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In other news, we are about half way done with Whole30 and it’s been great. I mean, I’ve eaten too many Lara Bars for my own good but no cheating yet so ya know, whatever.

My dad has been enjoying all the food that I have been making so much that he has been taking pictures of it and sharing the meals on FB. It’s cute/awesome.

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One of the meals that he dove into before taking a photo of was this faux pasta dish made of zucchini noodles that I topped off with a big heaping of a quick meat sauce.

It’s perfection. You don’t miss the pasta, nor the cheese. (at least that is what I tell myself!)

Take the time to finely dice/mince/attack with a knife all of the vegetables. It makes for a nicely textured sauce. Don’t be lay about it. It’s actually rather quick, but I am emphasizing it to make sure you actually make those pieces itty bitty.

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I kinda have a secret… I don’t really like zucchini noodles or  zoodles or whatever you call them. I think they are bland as hell. And quickly get soggy, but I will eat them in this one dish.

So I know that some people hate calling zucchini noodles zoodles, but I don’t care either way. Call them green and white veggie noodles for all I care. I actually don’t care so feel free to call them that.

I only care that you just make this. It doesn’t matter if you are doing Paleo or Whole30 or whatever, just make it!

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Quick Meat Sauce with Zucchini Noodles

Makes 6 Servings

Ingredients

For the Sauce

  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Cups minced carrot (I needed 2)
  • 1 Cup minced red onion (about half of an onion)
  • 3/4 Cup minced celery (I used 2 stalks)
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 pound ground meet (10/90)
  • 1/4 Cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 20 ounce jar of tomato sauce*
  • 6 to 12 zucchinis (depends on size), cut the ends off to create level surfaces

Process

  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil until it just shimmers. Add the garlic, and stir frequently for a minute.
  2. Add the carrot, red onion, and celery. Saute for 12-15 minutes, or until the vegetables are completely softened. Add the red pepper flake, pepper, and salt; mix well.
  3. Add the ground beef and break it up into small pieces while you brown it.
  4. When the ground beef is just about cooked through, add the red wine vinegar and the jarred sauce. Simmer for a least 5 minutes.
  5. As the sauce simmers, spiralize your zucchinis.
  6. Just prior to serving, warm and soften the zucchini noodles in a dry skillet over medium heat. You just want to soften the zucchini noodles!
  7. Serve the noodles with a the meat sauce on top! Dig in!

 

* Make sure your sauce is compliant if you are doing Whole30!

 

Whole30 #3: Days 7-9 Recaps & The End

 I am documenting my THIRD Whole30 journey to help me see how far I’ve come from my first Whole30 (Feb 2015), my second (April 2015), to now! Plus, I don’t want to fall into any food ruts. Hopefully this will keep me inspired through the whole process. I’m looking forward to the transformation in how I approach food, cook with it, and enjoy it. Check out all my Whole30 related posts HERE from why I did each previous Whole30, why I am doing this one, and all my food diaries. 

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{Day 7}

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

Ugh, what a day. It was a rough food day. Days like this make me realize how hard it is to stick to Whole30, and how important it is to stick to Whole30.

Breakfast

Whole30_3_Day 7_Breakfast

Banana and almond butter

This was eaten on the run, actually, in the car, but close enough.

We slept in so we didn’t have time to make breakfast before having to get in the car and go up to NH to visit Catherine and Ed. It was great to get extra sleep but made the morning tough in the end. We stopped off at McDonald’s on the way to get (black) iced coffees and to get an Egg Mcmuffin for Autumn. I wanted that damn Egg Mcmuffin!! ha!

Lunch

NADA!!

It was such a messed up day. It happens. Not great but it happens.

Dinner

Whole30_3_Day 7_Dinner

Grilled Aidell’s Chicken and Apple Sausages with baby bella mushrooms, shishito peppers, and sauteed kale

OMG food!!!!!!

We were so freaking hungry from skipping lunch. It was so, so good. Fresh, flavorful, delicious. I used a lemon olive oil from Trader Joe’s on the baby bellas. Loved it!!! And I ordered a box of Maldon Sea Salt from Amazon and I am so glad I did as it’s great on the shishito peppers.

Late Night Snack

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Homemade Potato Salad- made with tiny red potatos, homemade mayo, radishes, green onions

So I had planned on making this earlier in the day but didn’t get around to it until later on at night. Of course, I had to sample some… 🙂

Activity- 

7,711*

My Fitbit was dead in the morning so it effected my step count, but I still don’t think that I would have made my 10K step goal since we spent part of the day in the car and inside.

Hydration- 

It was a decent day from iced coffee, water, seltzer, etc

{Day 8}

Monday, July 27th, 2015

I spent most of the day battling thoughts about stopping this Whole30. I wasn’t feeling committed to it, like I had in the best, even when the going got tough. Instead I just felt restricted and alone (since Price cheated on Day 6). I was excited that my mom was doing it too in FL, as well as a co-worker, but I didn’t feel great about it this time. My heart wasn’t into it.

Breakfast

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2 over-easy eggs, sweet potato hash, pico de galo

Nice and simple.

Lunch

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Salad with romaine, grape tomatoes, radishes, avocado, and chicken with a homemade ranch dressing, then a Key Lime Pie Lara Bar (45 mins)

My avocado wasn’t ripe yet. Such a bummer. But the chicken was ah-mazing. It was was seasoned really well and really juicy. Glad I took the time to cook it that morning.

The Larabar was so good. Glad I found this flavor at Whole Foods on Sunday.

Dinner

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 Steak with fajita veggies and cauliflower rice, served with pico, cilantro, and limes

YES!!!! This was such a good dinner. I really loved the flavors and different textures from the steak, ‘rice’, veggies, and salsa. I could eat this all the time. I feel like I should have blogged about it!

Activity

4,811*

I plugged my Fitbit in at lunch and then forgot it there, so it didn’t get the rest of my steps counter, but I know that I hit my 10K step goal. Def!

Hydration

I should have had more water. I had coffee, water, and seltzer, but I still felt that my in-take amount was low for the day.

{Day 9}

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

DONE…

Yeah, so I fail at my 3rd Whole30. I broke the rules at lunch.

Breakfast

Whole30_3_Day 9_Breakfast

2 over-easy eggs with ‘fried’ plantains with Frank’s Red Hot

It’s easy to call them fried plantains, but in reality I cooked it with barely any oil. I love them for breakfast. So, so good.

Lunch

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Southwest Chicken Salad and some oven baked fries from B.Good with a Berry Chia Agua Fresca from 4 Petal

I basically knew I was going to stop Whole30 on Wednesday as I was going to the Boston Public Market blogger tour, where there would be lots of samples!, so I just decided to stop a bit earlier.

Megan requested that we go to B.Good so she could get a Southwestern Chicken Salad before moving so we got salads to go to enjoy sitting in PO Sq. I had successfully eaten at B.Good while doing Whole30 previously, but I decided that I really wanted the same salad as Megan so I ordered it… and enjoyed it!!!

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Lunch with my friend was just perfect! I’ll miss you tons and tons Megan! Have fun and lots of success in New York! xox

Dinner

Whole30_3_Day 9_Dinner

Leftover Spaghetti Squash with Rao’s Arrabbiata Sauce 

This was complaint to the Whole30 program. Just because I stopped doing the program at lunch doesn’t mean I am going to completely trash up my diet. 🙂

I ate half of what was pictured, which was more than plenty. Then I rushed off to a planning board meeting.

Activity/Steps

11,569*

Since I forgot my FitBit in the charger at work, it didn’t count my steps prior to getting to work, so it was a great day!

Hydration

A great day! Coffee, water, agua fresca, more water. yes!!!!

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Why I stopped my 3rd Whole30 of 2015…

I am all for committing to something and sticking to it, but I honestly was feeling suffocated by the restrictions. I just kept thinking about how I wanted to eat fresh summer-time corn on the cob. It just made me feel so sad that I’d deprive myself of that. I wasn’t craving a cookie. I was craving corn on the cob.

So I bailed on Day 9. Part of me wishes I just stuck with it. But I feel okay with myself that I stopped. I’m a grown ass adult so I can make my own decisions and feel good about them!! ha!

Yes, I know that I feel great while doing the Whole30 program but it’s not meant to be a long term dietary program. I figured out that I had done 68 days of Whole30 in 178 days. Not too shabby! It is a great accomplishment to complete one Whole30 program, so it was extra awesome to do 2 in a short period of time. We were going a little crazy with our eating after the wedding, but ultimately, we really weren’t!

Yes, I had my cookies and other naughty foods, but I wasn’t drinking very much, I wasn’t drinking soda, I was steering clear of rice, sugars, and avoided a lot of dairy. Our previous Whole30’s helped us out our cabinets, fridge, and freezer of non-compliant foods. And it helped us get stocked full of good for you things like flavored oils, vinegars, mustards, nuts, and a more diverse selection of fruits and veggies (hello chayote squash!)

I know that I will forever spread the word about Whole30 and how it greatly impacted my life and how I feel about the foods I chose to put into my body. I know that I will even do it again, and again for a healthy refresh! #lovewhole30

Whole30 #3: Days 4-6 Recaps

 I am documenting my THIRD Whole30 journey to help me see how far I’ve come from my first Whole30 (Feb 2015), my second (April 2015), to now! Plus, I don’t want to fall into any food ruts. Hopefully this will keep me inspired through the whole process. I’m looking forward to the transformation in how I approach food, cook with it, and enjoy it. Check out all my Whole30 related posts HERE from why I did each previous Whole30, why I am doing this one, and all my food diaries. 

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{Day 4}

Thursday, July 23rd 2015

The day started of really well but ended poorly. My back and ribs started to really hurt, so much so that it was hard to breathe. And my stomach that was iffy on Wednesday night was really bad on Thursday and I ended up with a fever. I just wanted to lay down and eat fritos, but I just stayed on program. Ugh, it stinks when you feel so badly.

Breakfast

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Coconut Water

I had this while on the bus into work. So refreshing, perfect for hot summer days.
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Banana and a peach

The coconut water sorta filled me up for a bit so I hate this fruit at work. Not ideal to not have protein but it was just one of those days when we had to get out of the house and I didn’t have time to cook anything. Boo

Lunch

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Pork Cutlet with sauteed baby zucchini and broccolini

I ate this during our fashion show meeting. It was good but I was blah about it. I feel like I’m hating zucchini now.

Dinner

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A peach and some iced tea (which I spilled on the sofa…)

I was feeling really, really lousy.

I did something to my back and chest, or whatever, and was hurting all over. I couldn’t pin-point what I did so I jsut turned to trusty Google and entered in my symptoms, which resulted in Kidney Stones. yay! Ultimately, I think I just happened to hurt my back/chest/ribs and had a stomach bug (which I later learned was going around the office), which gave me my lovely 101.7 fever.

So I had no appetite and just laid on the sofa starting from 6.30. I just ate the peach just to have something in my stomach so the Tylenol I took wouldn’t make my feel sicker on an empty stomach.

Activity

8,324 Steps

Didn’t hit my 10K step goal but considering how I barely moved after 6.30 I’m not too disappointed. Well, I am but whatever.

Hydration

Not so great as I felt so gross that drinking water or juice or ice tea made me feel so gross

{Day 5}

Friday, July 25th, 2015

TGIF!!!!

The day started with me still feeling super crummy but I started to feel better in the afternoon, thankfully.

Breakfast

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Starting to feel better so I ate some of this breakfast. I made the potatoes how my dad does so that was comforting, in a nostalgic sort of way.

Lunch

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Chicken Thigh with baked potato and green beans. Lots of Franks Red Hot

And then I felt poorly again. Boo!

I really didn’t want to eat lunch. I just wanted to eat a banana and to drink some coffee. So gross. I ate some of everything but basically forced myself to do so.

Dinner

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Sauteed fish over spiced cauliflower rice with fresh mango salsa and grilled shishito peppers

I had been thinking about this dinner all week!

Thankfully I got over whatever was making me feel so horrible and felt good enough to eat this awesome dinner. Plus, it was so nice to just sit outside with Price for dinner. So relaxing.

The mango salsa… yes!!!!!

Activity

10,887 Steps

went to Market Basket with Autumn after getting her from daycare so that gave me a nice boost in steps as we walked all around the large grocery store. Unfortunately, she ate all the yummy goods I couldn’t eat, like bread, cheese, and yogurt. Ha!

Hydration

Did a lot better today than yesterday as I was feeling better.

{Day 6}

Saturday July 25th, 2015

A busy Saturday at home. We had so much to do in the morning around the house and then a house warming party in the afternoon.

Price flubbed and had a drink Evan’s. While disappointing that he stopped Whole30, I understand it. It’s our 3rd Whole30 in just 5/6 months. Our of the last 173 days, 65 of them have been doing the program. While we feel good doing it, it’s still a bit draining.

Breakfast

 

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Some freshly squeezed OJ (Autumn had some too!) and potatoes and an over-easy egg

Autumn and I went shopping at Haymarket, like usual. Autumn had a big croissant and I shared some juice with her. Then when we got home Price and I had some potato and eggs, a basic repeat of the day prior.

Sadly, Price cut his finger on the mandoline when he cut the potatoes. Ouch!

Lunch

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Homemade Chicken Salad

I made chicken salad with the chickens that I roasted the night before. (Made stock with it too!). I love chicken salad! I had it with some endive that I used as a scoop.

 

Dinner

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Spaghetti Squash with Rao’s Arrabbiata Sauce 

Super quick and simple. I didn’t really feel like cooking after going to Evan’s housewarming party (no foods to eat!) so I just had Price cut the squash in half for me, I scraped out the seeds, and microwaved it ( I think 9-10 minutes for each half). Then I pour the jarred sauce on top. The squash was hot enough that I didn’t even need to warm up the sauce. Perfect.

*I like using Rao’s or Victoria’s sauces as there are several that are compliant, including Rao’s Marinara Sauce, Rao’s Roasted Garlic Sauce, and Rao’s Tomato Basil Sauce.

Activity/Steps

7,352 Steps.

Bummed we didn’t do much walking today but some weekends are like that. Busy at home but not much walking or getting around. At least it was a good day.

Hydration

I did well today. We even brought seltzer to Evan’s house to make sure we had something to drink.

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Stay tuned for more of my Whole30 food diaries!

Whole30 #3: Days 1-3 Recap

 I am documenting my THIRD Whole30 journey to help me see how far I’ve come from my first Whole30 (Feb 2015), my second (April 2015), to now! Plus, I don’t want to fall into any food ruts. Hopefully this will keep me inspired through the whole process. I’m looking forward to the transformation in how I approach food, cook with it, and enjoy it. Check out all my Whole30 related posts HERE from why I did each previous Whole30, why I am doing this one, and all my food diaries. 

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{Day 1}

Monday July 20th, 2015

A great first day of our THIRD(!) Whole30! It went smoothly. It’s nerve-wracking to dive into this again but it feels so good too. I’m excited to do it again.

Breakfast

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2 slices of homemade bacon, 1 over-easy egg, 1/4 of a sliced avocado, Brussels sprouts

A little bit of this, a little bit of that. It was good and satisfying.

Lunch

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Salad with romaine, arugula, grape tomatoes, chopped up bacon, homemade dressing. Lz Croix Passionfruit Seltzer. Larabar- Cashew Cookie

I forgot my hard boiled eggs at home, so I was bummed about that, but otherwise the salad was good. Plus, it was nice to take the time to sit outside to eat and read my book.

Dinner

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Sauteed haddock fillet with blistered tomatoes, roasted broccoli, served with Koop’s Horseradish Mustard

I made this quickly while Price was putting Autumn down to bed (or attempting to do so, as it has been such a struggle recently!). Then I ran over to CVS and ate my food in the car so that I could quickly get Autumn her Iron Supplement. Ya gotta do, whatcha gotta do.

Late Night Snack

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Kalot’s Fruit and Almond butter

While snacking on Whole30 is frowned upon, I was up late working in my office so I needed a little brain food. OMG. This almond butter is incredible. Loved it.

Activity/Steps

11,127 Steps

I had to go back to work so I didn’t get to do a big walk, but happy I met my 10K Step Goal.

Hydration

I started off the day with a massive cold brew coffee that I brought from home. I added some cinnamon to it to jazz it up.

Then I had 2 cans of La Criox Seltzer and a bunch of water.

{Day 2}

Tuesday, July 21st, 2015

Day 1 went well, as did Day 2. It feels good to be doing the program again and knowing how well it makes me feel.

Breakfast

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Scrambled Eggs, Sweet Potato Hash with zucchini, Trader Joe’s Salsa Verde

I made the scrambled eggs with 6 eggs, water, and a herb blend I got in Seattle. Price and I shared that, along with the sweet potato hash. So good & filling. I didn’t have any cravings in the morning since I was so full (protein!)

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Related… EAT ALL THE SALSAS!!! HAHAHA!!!

Lunch

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Salad made with Romaine and Argula with grape tomatoes, broccoli slaw (Trader Joe’s), leftover brussel sprouts, sauteed chicken. Homemade Dressing

Someone took my dressing at work. NOT OKAY! At least I had another older compliant one in the fridge too. But so annoyed!!! The salad was really good, even if I had to use a dressing I wasn’t looking forward to. Boo!

Dinner

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Cauliflower Rice with 2 Aidell’s Chicken and Apple Sausages and sauteed asparagus, Spicy Brown Mustard

Nothing fancy but it was satisfying.

Activity/Steps

11,514 Steps

I wanted to beat the number of steps I had on Day #1 so I paced around our room before going to bed. I’m nuts.

Hydration

Typical massive Cold Pressed coffee… I think like 30 ounces. Lots of water too. It was a good day.

{Day 3}

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

The day started off great, but ended up being pretty crummy. I stayed up late to write a blog post and while up I started to feel sick, which just made me stay up later and later. My stomach was so upset 😦 I don’t think it’s related to Whole30 or anything but I was definitely sick.

Breakfast

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Cauliflower rice with asparagus and 2 over easy eggs, Franks Red Hot 

Morning Snack

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Container of fruit- blueberries, mango, kiwi, pineapple

When I got to work I then munched on this container of fruit. I really needed this. I was feeling blah. I needed the fruit, although I probably shouldn’t have had it. I wasn’t craving sugar or sweet. I was craving something fresh. Maybe I’m already sick of eggs? CRAP!

Lunch

Whole30_3_Day3_LunchGreen Chili Curry Chicken Stir Fry with Broccoli and Blistered Tomatoes with Cauliflower Rice 

I made this quick stir fry in the morning for our lunch. I used Thai Kitchen’s Green Curry Paste to make it. I thinned it out with some water and it made a nice mellow sauce. Plus the tomatoes that burst added some extra amazing flavor to it.

Dinner

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Pork Chops with brussel sprouts and a baked potato, 1 pickle (not pictured)

This felt like a ‘normal’ meal.

I used ghee for the baked potato, but I always keep forgetting that the Trader Joe’s Ghee is made with unsalted butter so I was wondering why it was kinds blah. Of course, I then added hot sauce. I guess that’s better than salt!

Dessert

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shared a small bowl of watermelon with Price

It was refreshing and enjoyable to end the day, especially after a 3.25 mile walk. I ate it less for it being sugary, than for it being cool and watery.

Activity/Steps

16,321 Steps!

Went on a 3.25+ mile walk with Kellie. We walked down to Mary O Malley Park. It was such a nice night that we couldn’t resist a long walk.

Hydration

Failed miserably today!

I realized on my way home (3.30pm) that I was feeling crumby because I didn’t have enough water by then. I tried to play catch up with a diluted unsweetened ice tea, but was not successful. Plus, I did the big walk, which put me in even more of a deficit. UGH.

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Stay tuned for more of my Whole30 food diaries!