switching it up.

by Janetha on January 5, 2011

in meals

i think i made it clear that i think making a mile-long list of goals at the new year is a little silly.

what i don’t think is silly is changing small habits to become a better person overall. it really is so easy to change one or two things to slowly develop better habits!

this month (and, well, this year really!) i am teaming up with the simply bar and participating in their simply switches movement. you have heard me rave about simply bars before, so when i heard about the simply switches idea i was quick to jump on board!

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a brief explanation from the simply bar website:

How many new years have you kicked off by saying, “my diet starts now,” or “this year I’ll hit the gym every day”?
If you’re like us, this approach just hasn’t worked. So we’re trying something simple in 2011:

Simply Switches is our “get real” resolution: a campaign to make health a habit, one switch at a time.

What are Simply Switches? They’re small, achievable shifts in eating, exercise and lifestyle habits – simple changes that don’t require a lot of effort, but really go the distance for your health. A Simply Switch can be choosing a green tea instead of a sugary latte in the afternoon, or going to a yoga class after work instead of going home to watch TV. By making three Simply Switches each day, we’re inspiring positive changes that actually last. Join us!

We’ll be tracking our switches on our website daily (www.wellnessfoods.ca/simplyswitches) with the help of Registered Dietitian Mary Bamford. Come share your Simply Switches and join our interactive discussion – we’ll talk about what works, what doesn’t, and we’ll keep each other motivated!

To keep you going, we’ll give away two boxes of Simply Bars to a different participant each week. And at the end of the month, we’ll give away 50 healthy lifestyle baskets, worth $150 each (because come February, we’re all going to need a boost to keep switching!)

doesn’t that sound exciting? and, to make it more exciting, i will be giving away one of the incredible gift baskets at the end of this month! i will let you know the details of the giveaway when the time comes, but start making some simple switches in your own life so you can enter to win.

i have thought of several simple switches that i will be making this month. here are a some of the switches i have in mind:

1. eat more of a variety.

i have fallen into the habit of eating the same things all the time. yogurt and granola for breakfast, a chicken or turkey wrap for lunch and a dinner that involves chicken or turkey.

our bodies crave variety and, just like with exercise, our bodies can stop responding positively if we eat the same things day in and day out. i am going to make a few simple switches and increase the variety in my diet.

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i started today with a tuna sandwich for lunch instead of the chicken wrap that i had for lunch every day for the past five work days.

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i don’t think i’ve had a tuna sandwich in over a year! this was a delicious and simple switch. i plan to keep the momentum going this whole month with different meals. i bookmarked several recipes to try that involve protein options aside from chicken and turkey. i am excited!

2. reduce the snooze.

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i can’t say “no more snooze”—but i can reduce the amount of time i spend pressing the snooze button on my alarm every morning. i typically press snooze for 90 minutes. not kidding.  this month, i am going to try to press snooze for no more than 30 minutes. this is a simple switch and it isn’t too tough. quitting the snooze button cold turkey would be rough, but i think i can scale it back quite a bit without a problem!

3. flowers.

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my awesome sister gave us this vase for christmas. it has a little chalk board on it and we can write whatever message we want.

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marshall wrote the latest one, in case you couldn’t tell.  i purchased some flowers yesterday and when i got home today and saw them on the table, they really brightened up my mood!

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the simple switch of replacing the table centerpiece with fresh flowers has made a world of difference. i think fresh flowers should be around at all times.

4. stretching during commercials.

if i want to touch my toes before the end of the year, i need to work on it!

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i don’t watch a ton of TV, but marshall and i do have a few shows we like to watch together. instead of going to the kitchen for a handful of cereal on every commercial break, i am going to use that time to stretch my legs. hopefully this simple switch will help me touch my toes faster!

5. more meatless meals.

i didn’t mention it, but one of marshall’s new years resolutions is to eat less meat. i don’t have a problem with eating meat every day, but he does. he really doesn’t want every meal to include meat, so i am making a simple switch to incorporate more meatless meals into dinners at home. this goes right along with my first switch of eating more of a variety, so that’s nice. it isn’t hard to eat meat-free meals, but i just never really make them.

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we started last night with a lemony hummus pasta paired with baked tofu. you can bet i will be looking to a few friends for recipe ideas.

there you have it! a handful of simple yet important switches that i plan to make this month. please join me and make a few simple switches of your own.. at the end of the month, those switches could earn you a super sweet gift basket and WILL earn you some super sweet new habits.

in other news, dinner tonight was too delicious not to share.

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momma b hooked it up with some delicious vegetable beef stew.

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i love my toucan spoon! he is friends with my owl spoon that you have all seen before. he’s from costa rica. man, that must have been a long flight for the little guy.

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paired with a fresh, crisp salad. trying to eat more veggies these days.

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and now i am watching the jazz game, pondering what to do with six overripe bananas. i will letcha know how that goes.

that’s all for now!

Qs~

1. do you press snooze? for how long? i would go as far as saying that i have, on some occasions, pressed snooze for 3 hours. back in the day where i used to *try* to work out in the mornings. gave up that dream long ago.

2. what is your favorite meatless dinner? let’s face it, this is more for my benefit than anything else :)

xo. janetha g.

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allison marie January 6, 2011 at 8:45 am

I’m a 30 minute snoozer, but its my goal to make it a zero minute snoozer :) I need my hubby to start being mean in the am :)

lowandbhold January 6, 2011 at 8:59 am

I press snooze way, way too much. It’s gross.

a taste of health with balance January 6, 2011 at 9:06 am

switchy switchh– my goal is more variety in my diet too. i’m forcing myself to do this! i get stuck in ruts really easy. i totally agree about fresh flowers!!

Meaghan January 6, 2011 at 9:45 am

I usually snooze 20-30 minutes but have been know to snooze for up to an hour. After that my snooze button turns off automatically which usually results in me continuing to sleep and being super late for work :)

Ashley @ 365 things January 6, 2011 at 9:56 am

I only hit snooze 1 time at the most and not every day. When I go to hit snooze I ask myself “will this extra 10 min (or however long it is, I don’t remember) actually DO anything for me or make a difference??” And I always end up telling myself that no, it will not. lol Also, I’ve ended up turning the clock off rather than snooze way too many times which causes me to oversleep then shoot up out of bed in a panic. I hate that feeling WAY too much!

My fave meatless dinner is a big plate of veggies (okra, potatoes, cauliflower, green beans…etc), pita and hummus at our local Greek restaurant. Delicious! Their ‘fall off the bone’ chicken is awesome, but I’m perfectly happy skipping it.

Jessy (squeezetheday) January 6, 2011 at 10:57 am

I’m not really a snoozer. I’m actually an early bird myself – most of the time I wake up even before my alarm sounds. If I do hit snooze, it’s usually for 5 or 10 mins. I don’t fall back asleep, though. How come you can afford extra 90 minutes and not be late for work? I mean, why do you set up your alarm so early?

Hmm, any cheese dish or my mom’s vegetable stew are probably among my favourite meatless dinner choices. I used to hardly eat meat for the last 5 years, but recently, with my change of lifestlye, I’ve started eating it more often, as it’s yummy and a great source of protein. :) For meatless protein source, I go for eggs or cottage cheese.

Katy January 6, 2011 at 10:58 am

I sometimes hit the snooze button, but for no more than 20 minutes tops!!!

My favorite meatless meals are tempeh and roasted veggie salads, vegetable soups, and homemade veggie burgers! :D

thedelicateplace January 6, 2011 at 11:08 am

i love tuna. you can make your salad with sardines or wild salmon too just make sure to use a powerful herb combo like tarragon-dill for the ‘dines. cute spoon! how did your salad daily in december turn out? my fave meatless meal is either: spaghetti squash with brussel sprouts as meatballs or ‘kraut+sliced red potato+onion slow roasted in a dutch oven. cheap and delish! sprinkle on some cheese for crusty goodness!

Shannon January 6, 2011 at 11:35 am

I don’t press snooze ever, and all of my meals are meatless. How boring am I? Sheesh! My DH, who is very omni loves Quorn products. The breaded chicken patties he says are better than those other frozen “real” pucks, and are great chopped up on salads (for me) or as a burger (for him). I rec any of Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s books. Seriously. She also posts recipes on her blog and at theppk.com

Katie January 6, 2011 at 11:43 am

I used to be a big snoozer, but when I got married, it drove Meeker up the wall, so I quit. Now I just set 2 alarms, 3 minutes apart. The first one wakes me up, the second one gets me out of bed. Meeker still hates it, but I just can’t do ONE!

Meat hasn’t appealed to me lately, so I’ve kind of cut back, too. My recent favorite was a Chipotle inspired burrito bowl with rice, sauteed veggies, beans, guac…tex-mex things. It was yummy!

cbrady3 January 6, 2011 at 11:58 am

I’m NOT a snoozer! Never have been. Some how the idea of half-sleeping for a while instead of just getting real sleep until you NEED to wake up doesn’t make sense.

And as a vegetarian, all my meals are meatless! I love baked tofu, sweet potatoes with black beans, and veggie burgers!

Sara January 6, 2011 at 1:01 pm

I love this idea of simple switches!

So I used to be a snoozer, big time, and now I’m a leap-out-of-bed-er(?) and I’ve realized that I feel a lot more rested when I don’t snooze, because the sleep you get after the first time the alarm goes off isn’t as restful as having not been interrupted. It was hard to change, but I did what you’re doing, which is limited myself to a less amount of snoozing, and set my alarm so that I’d HAVE to get out of bed or be late to work.

So my fav meatless meals include veggie chili, enchiladas with vegetables & cheese filling instead of meat, and veggie lasagna. Those are also 3 things that my meat-eating friends & family LOVE for me to make, and don’t even care that there’s no meat in!

Rose January 6, 2011 at 1:09 pm

I am not a snoozer. Once the alarm goes off, I can’t go back to sleep. My husband, I’m pretty sure could snooze for three hours if he didn’t HAVE to be at work.

Meatless meals? I’m a fan of breakfast for dinner, with a big veggie omelet.

kaitlinwithhoney January 6, 2011 at 1:35 pm

I seriously love sauteed vegetables + tempeh in Trader Joe’s Thai Yellow Curry Sauce. Love. And for simple nights, I often scramble eggs with veggies and cheese.

Shannon @ BetterNextTime January 6, 2011 at 2:17 pm

I build my snooze time in! Love it. It does get out of hand sometimes…weekends especially. Living in an apartment, I wonder all the time if my neighbors can hear it. Sometimes that thought alone gets me up!

Ashley January 6, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Janetha, I just stumbled across your blog & I’m so excited to start following it! I love your “moves” section of your site! I am always looking for new exercises to incorporate into my routine and its so helpful that you post pictures of the moves you do! I’m also looking forward to trying out some of your recipes! :)

BroccoliHut January 6, 2011 at 6:19 pm

I have many meatless favorites, but go-to is always scrambled tofu.

christina January 6, 2011 at 6:33 pm

i love that vase. i have wine glasses like that. i love writing my guest’s name on them. or just writing something stupid to make them laugh. and yes, unfortunately i am a snoozer….so much that today during my snoozefest i somehow managed to shut my alarm clock completely. and wake up an hour and a half late to work. awesome!

inmytummy January 6, 2011 at 6:53 pm

During the week, I snooze for 9 minutes. But sometimes when I take a nap during the weekends, I sometimes snooze for an hour!

thefitnessapple January 6, 2011 at 8:40 pm

I need to work on touching my toes too! ugh LOL I stretch and stretch but its just too hard!

Jennie January 6, 2011 at 9:10 pm

I can’t believe you snooze for 90 minutes! That’s crazy. I almost always wake up before my alarms goes off anyways. My husband ALWAYS hops out of bed as soon as his alarm goes off. I may lay in bed for a few minutes but I don’t hit snooze.

I made a delicious meatless meal tonight. Minestrone soup. One jar of spaghetti sauce, 5 cups of water, 1 cup of cooked quinoa, bag of frozen corn, 1 chopped zucchini, and 2 cans of cannelini beans (drained and rinsed). Topped with parmesan cheese. YUM!

Rebecca January 7, 2011 at 10:32 am

I’m a TOTAL Snoozer! I hit the snooze button for 15-30 minutes every morning! I don’t know if I could ever give this up, it helps me wake up.

As for meatless meals a couple of my favs are veggie Omelettes or Eggplant Parm…YUM!

Susan January 9, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Ahhh, I need to click over every day now so I can see the food holiday!

I love your switches. Especially the variety one. I actually need to play down the tuna because I could eat a tuna sandwich with carrot sticks every single day and be perfectly happy. No wait, I already do.

1. You know firsthand that I am not a snoozer. As soon I’m awake, I’m AWAKE! Well, no. Partially awake until I’ve had my coffee, then there’s really no going back.

2. Make the tofu balls from Post Punk Kitchen. The ones with PB and soy sauce. Amazing.

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