Dot to Trot

My world is expanding as my butt is shrinking!

Healthy Version of Chipotle’s Beef Barbacoa

When I weighed 325 lbs. I loved going to Chipotle. I couldn’t get enough of their beef barbacoa. Once I made the decision to go low carb I said goodbye to Chipotle and never looked back. Oh sure, I could have just had the amazing pulled beef over lettuce rather than rice to cut back on the barbs. Well that my friends means 27g vs. 61g of carbs. Not worth it.

However, with a little creativity, that doesn’t mean I can’t make my own deliciously healthy and LCHF-friendly beef barbacoa.

This dish is so tasty it requires 2 videos. The first is for a smokey salsa — a key ingredient for the spicy & smokey beef dish. Or just plain tasty with LCHF “chips” and cut veggies.

The second, of course, is for the beef barbacoa itself.

Next time I’m going to try it with a green-salsa.

Enjoy!

 

Kissing Insomnia Goodbye!

glasses

Modeling my new blue-light blocking glasses. For just $10 I’m finally getting my 8 hours of sleep a night and bringing my hunger level back under control.

A few weeks ago, on a whim, I made a little purchase. I ordered blue light-blocking glasses and it’s transformed my sleep. When I put them on in the evening, not only am I sleepy within an hour, I’m out like a light within minutes of my head hitting my pillow. Since I started using the glasses I average 8 hours of shut-eye a night. Hot damn!

I’ve noticed a difference in my hunger level too. Pre-glasses, I was lucky to get 5 hours of sleep and I always felt ravenous the next day. Once I started using the glasses, my sleep improved and my hunger levels were normal. Sweet!

My Nightly Routine
At 9:00 pm sharp I slip on the glasses. It doesn’t matter if I’m using my iPad for reading, cleaning my kitchen or brushing my teeth…those glasses are on at 9:00 p.m. They don’t come off until all lights are off and I slip into bed.

Bedtime is 10:00 p.m. I don’t mean getting ready for bed (washing my face, brushing my teeth, getting on my PJs). At 10:00 p.m. the lights are off and I’m in bed.

I still take 5g of melatonin nearly every night. But I’ve noticed that I fall asleep quicker and longer when using the glasses.

It’s the best $10 I’ve spent in a long time.

My 30-Day Keto Challenge

keto cookbook

An amazing keto cookbook that I’m relying on as I start my 30-Day Keto Challenge, eating up to 80% healthy fats a day.

For the last week I’ve played with my diet to see what works in minimizing my menopause symptoms and it’s looking like a strict ketogenic diet is the way to go. When I say strict, I’m talking about reducing both my carbs and protein intake while increasing healthy dietary fat.

However, there are a few other changes I’m making to my diet and lifestyle that will go into my March 30-Day Keto Challenge. I’ve been easing into those changes in February so it isn’t such a shock to my system, but they are significant.

Dot’s New Macros*
As for calculating my macronutrients, there are a lot of good ketogenic macro calculators online (here and here). I’m a fan of nutritionist Maria Emmerich and after listing to a podcast of her answer questions about keto and menopause I decided to go with her calculator.

  • Daily Calories – 1706 kcal
  • Daily Macros (calories/grams/ounces)
    • Fat – 80% (1346.4 kcal/151.6g)
    • Protein – 17% (290 kcal/72.5g/10 ounces)
    • Carbohydrates – 3% (51.2 kcal/12.8g)

Read more…

Want To Change Behavior? Try A 30-Day Challenge

Screenshot 2014-09-02 11.11.07

30-Day Challenges are a great way to create new habits, change how you do things and build confidence. And they are available online for free. Just make sure you pick one that’s realistic.

I love this article from Business Insider on the importance of 30-Day Challenges in changing behavior. I’ve become a big believer in these challenges. I’ve used them to:

  • Drink more water
  • Cut back on alcohol
  • Build strength
  • Run a 5k
  • Improve my sleep habits

I always try to pick something that:

  1. Isn’t part of my wheelhouse;
  2. Provides opportunity for self-improvement;
  3. Realistic and measurable.

It’s important to pick a challenge where you not only want to make a change, but decided that you must change. Big difference.

Making a meaningful, lasting change means committing to it. Read more…

Celebrate Valentine’s Day With Some Mudlove!

I just got a little note in my inbox about a Valentine’s Day special on the CW tonight about one of my obsessions  (it’s at the top of my bucket list!!!) — The Tough Mudder. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than curled up on the couch with my husband learning about the folks doing the world’s ultimate muddy obstacle race.

Mudlove is in the air tonight!

Healthy Red Velvet Cupcakes

Here’s a little Valentine’s Day treat you can make at home: Red Velvet Cupcakes! Yum. Easy to make, healthy and delicious.

A LCHF Friendly Valentine’s Dinner

Well the hubby and I decided to eat in for the rest of the month. So that mean Valentine’s Day Dinner is at home this year. Below is one of my favorites I enjoy making for special occasions. I rarely make beef tenderloin steaks and that’s a shame. So tender when cooked to perfection. Wrapping it in bacon just heightens the flavor.

I don’t cook these steaks often because the cut seems so cost prohibitive (organic, grass-fed and no hormones and antibiotic cuts go for $28/pound). Ugh! Talk about short-sighted. Last year for Valentine’s we went to a nice steakhouse and spent $300 (steaks, sides, shared dessert, bottle of wine and tip). $300!!!!  The whole dinner in the video below set us back a whopping $30. Of course I didn’t buy wine.

Are you cooking for Valentine’s Day or heading out?

Drumsticks + Bacon = LCHF Awesomeness

Bacon, dark meat and zero carbs…what’s not to love? So easy to make.

Combating Bloat By Working The Abs, Avoiding Veggies

veggies

Some of my favorite veggies are awesome on the health scale, but are not helping my abdominal bloat.

One of the side effects of surgical menopause is my body has absolutely no time to adjust to the drop in estrogen. This means dealing painful stomach bloating. How bad is the bloat? Some times my belly swells so large I look pregnant. Yikes!

It gets especially painful around my belly button – that’s where the camera was inserted for my surgery. It’s the one incision area that is the slowest to heal as it takes the brunt of the bloating.

There are a few things I can do with my diet and exercise to minimize the bloating while my body finds its footing.

  1. Bidding Adieu to My Favorite Veggies – For the time being certain vegetables no longer welcomed in my kitchen. While I don’t use a lot of garlic and onions, they are a staple when it comes to adding flavor. Unfortunately they contain fructans, soluble fibers that cause bloating. I’m also giving up all cruciferous vegetablesbroccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, all cabbage, collard greens… Oh the list seems to go on! At least spinach, avocados and tomatoes are safe.
  1. Kicking Out Carbonated Water – The carbon dioxide in carbonated water can get trapped in the digestive system, causing bloat. I started drinking carbonated water as a way to drink more water. Now I drink about 80-90 ounces of tap water a day, so kicking fizzy water to the curb shouldn’t be difficult.
  1. Building Up My Core – On days where I do yoga or walk the bloat is pretty much non-existent. Not so much when I do weight training.  Thankfully there are some other exercises that can safely incorporate into my strength training: crunches, sit ups, seated twist and energy push. The first three are perfect for strength training as they use body weight. The energy push can be used as part of my warm up routine.

These three steps are my starting point. Now there is a chance that I may have to give up my beloved dairy. I certainly don’t have any signs of lactose intolerance.  Nonetheless I started cutting back on dairy (creams and cheese) to get my total daily carbs under 20g.

I plan to see how well these 3 steps help with the bloat. Maybe by the end of the month I’ll see if dairy needs to get added to the list.

A Calorie Is Just A Calorie, Right?

No, it isn’t true: A calorie isn’t just a calorie. The quality of the calories is far more important. Need proof?  Here’s your tweet of the day courtesy of Dr. Ted Naiman (if you don’t follow Dr. Ted’s tweets you really should).

tweet-of-the-day

 

 

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