Costa Vida Sweet Pork Salad

All day on Wednesday I was feeling like I wanted "something" but I wasn’t sure what.  It wasn’t that I wanted sweets but it also felt like my leftover meals were not satisfying me either.

I really wanted to eat out on Tuesday but I didn’t have a whole lot of PPVs left.  Since I’ve been splitting up my WPPAs over my week and eating seven a day I don’t have a large majority left over at the end of my week like I used to.  Saving most of my WPPA for the end of my WW week is what would get me into trouble and cause me to ruin my whole week with just one day of food.

Trust me though; my mind knows I’m not “splurging” on Tuesdays anymore.  I know it and I struggle with it.  I really wanted a sweet pork salad from Costa Vida.  It is A LOT of PPVs and I just didn’t have the points to spend on Tuesday.  Plus, I didn’t need to be spending the money to eat out either.  So, I sucked it up and just dove into my leftovers when mealtime rolled around.

Same thing with Wednesday: more leftovers.  I was feeling pretty bored with my food despite feeling happy about not having to spend money on groceries just yet.  I knew the reason I was searching for something else to eat was because I was still thinking about that sweet pork salad.  I did some pre-tracking/pre-planning on Wednesday night and yesterday I had my salad!

It was worth all 22 PPVs!  My taste buds were so happy and I kept saying, “man that was good” for a long time afterwards!  I love the sweet pork salad and the fresh tortilla it is served with.

Costa Vida is very similar to Café Rio so I use the NI for Café Rio.  The salad is very pointy, mostly because of the fresh tortilla.  I hate when restaurants serve a salad in a fried tortilla.  Yuck!  The benefit of the fresh tortilla is that I can tear it and roll up bits of my salad as I eat.  It is like having both a burrito and a salad all at the same time. 

I am sure I look like a homeless person that hasn’t eaten in a while though!  It is just that good!

I always get the large salad but they do offer a small size too.  They also offer a beef and chicken option but sweet pork is totally the way to go!  As with most restaurant visits I do have a “special order” and so I factor up the PPVs for how I order my salad.

The tortilla is 11 PPVs.  I don’t usually eat all of it as I try to shave off a few PPVs and the very center of the tortilla can get really soggy so I often have that part left over.  Today I ate a little more than usual because I was super hungry when I showed up.  And it was just super yummy!

You have a choice of beans and rice.  I never get rice.  This is just one more way that I can shave off some PPVs.  I do like rice but at Mexican restaurants I just skip it.  I’d rather use my PPVs for other stuff.  I do love beans though so I always get black beans for 3 PPVs.

I always get sweet pork.  A 2 oz portion is 3 PPVs.  I try to watch them assemble it but it is always hard to gauge the actual amount of pork being put on the salad.  I usually count 5 PPVs for the sweet pork.

A 1 oz serving of tortilla strips is 4 PPVs.  I get a few for some crunch.  If they really do just put a few on I count it as 1 or 2 PPVs.

I get the tomatillo ranch on the side and I ask for a small side as I only add a little to my salad.  I like just enough for a nice mix of flavor between the sweet pork and the ranch.  I count 2 PPVs for this. 

Lastly I get a little bit of the powdery cotija cheese.  I count this as 1 PPV if they only give me a little.
The best part of both Costa Vida and Café Rio is that they also serve Coke Zero.

So…there you have it!  A very pointy meal that is VERY yummy!!!  I always get the sweet pork salad when I visit but one of these times I might get the sweet pork nachos.  Just you shake it up a bit.  Ahhhh...who am I kidding!  I love me some fresh tortilla.

Since I pre-planned/tracked ahead of time I paired my large meal with some leftovers to get me through my shift at work.  Later in the evening I had leftover spaghetti squash bake.

And for my early morning food I typically eat close to the end of my shift I had some fresh pineapple with non-fat Greek yogurt.


Surprise At The Scale

Sorry I am late today!  Being on night shift again means I should have posted this when I first woke up!

When I woke up on Tuesday morning feeling a bit “puffy” and not sure what the scale at home would show. I took a deep breath, stepped on the scale, and saw a 1.2 pound gain.

That was hard to see but I know I didn't deserve the gain. I had not yet eaten all my WPPAs and still had my 20 APs that I also had not eaten. So this was definitely an undeserved gain. I was psyching myself up to stay positive and just keep on going forward. I really believe that you can't judge anything by just one week and you really need a good 4-8 week time frame to see some sort of pattern develop.

What I mean by this is that being a woman I get an unpleasant visitor once a month. That mixed with other hormonal changes could show up on the scale, make your pants feel tighter, and cause some major “fat day” feelings. It is sort of like a bad hair day but all over your body! So occasionally we can work really hard for a loss and instead see a gain.

Much to my surprise, I actually had a 0.4 pound loss. Hey! I'll take it. I am really happy for a forth loss in a row. YEAH! I am working my way down the scale.

It has been four weeks since I got back from HI, got honest with myself, and have been working really hard to bring the scale back down in hopes of eventually getting back into my goal range. Since it has only been four weeks if I did have a gain it wouldn't have been enough yet to see a true pattern. I have been doing WW for seven years and made goal almost five years ago. I know by now that the week after my “monthly visitor” I would usually show a low loss when in weight loss mode and once in maintenance I would show a slight gain. I don't like making excuses for a gain so having one that isn't deserved is just tough all the way around.

Thankfully I didn't have to worry about it and I hope to continue to see the scale move downward. I have a really busy March planned so I have to stay accountable and honest and keep doing what I'm doing. Because it is working!


Good Eats

I had another really successful week of food/eating.  Splitting my WPPAs up into seven a day has been really nice.  I’m not sure I enjoyed as many splurges with it as I knew I had some eating out planned on Sunday that I would need some WPPAs for.

I had pita bread to use up so we made philly cheese steaks.  This is a WW recipe out of an old cookbook I have at home.  I have to say though I really like it best served on a baguette roll.

My usual apple pancake which is one of my favorites!  I love the caramelized brown sugar when cooking.

More pita bread!  I was going to make a sandwich with leftover turkey and ham along with some apple slices.  I realized I had left over sauce from when we made homemade pita pizzas so I made a hot pizza pocket sandwich.  I used my George Foreman for the grilling.  Served with carrots on the side.

Turkey tenderloin served with mixed steamed veggies and green beans.

Oatmeal with drizzly peanut butter, the only way to serve it!

I was super busy Thursday last week and knew I might not get home for lunch.  I didn’t need to be spending money or PPVs to eat out so I packed some food to go.  I had a cut up chicken patty, carrots and dip, grapes, and yogurt with peaches.  I also packed some water and a Coke Zero.  It worked out really well.

In my rush to get out the door to my friend’s daughter’s 2nd grade play, I only had enough time to warm some leftovers and throw them all into the same Tupperware dish.  I took this on the road.  It was leftover turkey tenderloin.  Don’t worry, I also grabbed dessert!  One of my Valentine’s Day cake pop treats.

Bacon wrapped pork chop, roasted asparagus, and baked beans.  I love bacon wrapped pork chops!  And they are so easy.  I take a thin chop and trim off any visible fat.  I wrap it in two slices of bacon, I liked the pre-cooked Kirkland bacon, then grill in the George Forman.

This is a baked spaghetti squash casserole.  I never liked spaghetti but I liked baked spaghetti.  So I started making it with spaghetti squash.  Roast your squash at 400 degrees for about 25-30 minutes then scrape out the insides.  Mix it with all sorts of veggies and cooked beef or turkey if you wish.  Add a sauce and some cheese and then bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes.  This time I used a homemade sauce with just tomato sauce and it wasn’t as good as jarred pasta sauce.

Open faced omelet!  I made an omelet and just flipped it over in the pan when it needed to be flipped.  I then decided to just add my cheese and eat it open faced.  I really liked adding a slice of apple on top with my bites.  Sharp white cheddar and apple goes very well together!

Okay…now my meals out!!!
I love Cracker Barrel and Thursday is their turkey dinner night.  I was switching to night shift so this was my last opportunity for turkey dinner.  I convinced Kenyon to meet me there after he got off work.  I always get the mashed potatoes and usually the carrots.  I’ve been eating a lot of carrots lately so I went for green beans.  It also comes with cornbread dressing. 

My plan is to always eat half the potatoes and dressing to reduce the PPVs.  Oh, and I drink a lot of coffee!  I love their coffee.

Fruit on the go in the car.  I stopped in to Fred Meyer to pick up my prescription and fruit sounded yummy.  I paid a pretty penny for these but man they were good!

I was feeling the veggie void on Monday after a less-than-nutritious day on Sunday.  I talked Kenyon into going to SouperSalad.  Today they had butter bean soup.

The pizza wasn’t good so I ditched it after one bite.  Here is take two of my plate, which is now upside down!

I went back for a tiny taste of the chicken enchilada soup.  They have some really good soups.

Since I didn’t use any extra WPPAs for frozen yogurt on Sunday I used some on Monday for ice cream at SouperSalad.  I added in some oreo crumbles and a drizzle of caramel, mixed it all together, then put it into a cone.  Their ice cream is REALLY soft.  It was a nice change to just their normal ice cream cone!

At work I sometimes get bored with tea and coffee.  I went in search of something else warm to drink.  I found this Maxwell House mix.  It isn’t as sweet as I would like so I add a packet of Stevia.  It is pretty good though.
In the same day I was at two different coffee shops.  I forgot to snap a photo of the breakfast sandwich I had at the first one.  It was good but the service was terrible.  Then a few hours later I was downtown and needed to kill a little time so I popped into Flying M for a decaf Americano.

Don’t worry, I didn’t indulge in the yummy pastries and desserts but I might have drooled a little.

My friend Jamie gave me some free Jamba Juice coupons for my birthday.  This time I had the light Aloha Pineapple and it wasn’t good.  I think I’ll stick to the light Mango.  I already know it is good.

Margarita at Ladies Happy Hour.

Be still my heart!  My true love!!!

Whenever I see people drinking wine, I immediately want wine.  Wine drinking happens A LOT while watching The Bachelor so I opened up a bottle of wine.  I am having a party next week so I needed to open a bottle of wine anyway.  Yes, we will go with that excuse.

Don’t worry!  I balanced out my wine with water.

The temps have gotten into the 50s so it is allllllmost iced coffee time again!

I love Easter time and sweet tarts! 

They shrunk the size of my candy!  Sure you get more now for your PPVs but I liked the size of the bigger ones better.  I only eat the purple and orange ones so it is sort of wasteful.


Moving And Shaking

It was another great week on the exercise front. I was sort of down to the wire getting in my 20 APs, however, my days off switched this week so I had Sunday and Monday available to get in some good activity.

FitBit totals for the week: 61,311 steps and 28.18 miles. I earned a total of 20 APs.

Wednesday: Zumba class at the YMCA and some walking after
I met my friend Phoenix at the Y and we decided to take the Zumba class. It wasn't the full version Zumba. This class used a chair to do some strength and core work in addition to some dance moves. I am not a big fan of Zumba but this class was semi-okay. Since my work schedule just changed I won't be going back right now but maybe a future option. 4 APs earned.

Thursday: Elliptical at the YMCA
Today Show and Olympic coverage kept me entertained on the elliptical. The upstairs locker room/bathroom is currently under remodel. I drank waaaaay too much coffee before going to workout so it made for several trips up and down the stairs! 4 APs earned.  

Friday: 3:30am treadmill time
My last day waking up at 3:30am for some exercise for a few weeks. 3 APs earned. I went to my friend's daughter's 2nd grade school play this evening. It was Romeo and Juliet but instead it took place in Idaho were the Farming Capulets and the Mining Montegues were fighting over water rights. It was pretty cute and instead of Shakespeare's usual tradgic ending this one ended on a happy note.

Saturday: Rest Day
I knew I wasn't getting up early to walk the treadmill before work but I wasn't 100% sure if this would turn into a rest day. I knew with Sunday and Monday off work I would be able to get some activity in. I was pretty tired after work so I took a day off.

Sunday: 3 mile walk outside
I got my heart rate pumping on my three mile walk outside. It was a little too ealry for sunshine as the sun was just beginning to rise as I got back home. My mile two walking pace was 14:42 and mile three was 14:45. 5 APs earned.

Monday: 3.5 mile walk outside
We had beautiful warm weather on Monday so I ventured out for another walk. We are still surrounded by construction so it is limiting the direction I can walk. I set out on foot to find a path around the construction and ended up finding a whole bunch of neighborhoods to walk through. I look forward to exploring more! I think I have figured out how to get to a new park nearby and also the new shopping center. I'm going to test it out the next time I get out for a walk. I also saw the cutest Girl Scout cookie advertising along my walking route. 4 APs earned.

Tuesday: Rest day
Today will be a rest day. I start swing shift tonight (4pm to 2am) and I have my WW meeting at 9am. I'll probably catch a nap sometime today before work.