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NEW here And Need advice on challenging schedules

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Old 11-08-2006, 11:32 PM   #1
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Default NEW here And Need advice on challenging schedules

Hi I just joined this after reading about it in a magazine. I am 42 and 297 lbs. My biggest challenge is my work. I work in a group home for severly mentally/physically challenged adults. I happen to be one of the best cooks there (didn't get this way eating raw green beans! ) I HAVE to cook what the state tells me to and then it's too easy to eat what the clients eat! I have tried bringing a cup o' soup or something similar but then the clients want it cause it's different. Our idea of a break is sitting down with a client and feeding or caring for them. NO me time. Then when I get home I am too exhausted and make something easy for my family. I need direction
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Old 11-09-2006, 12:28 AM   #2
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Wow! That does sound challenging!

Here's a couple of things that might help us help you:
What's your schedule like?
What's the food like?
Are there lighter items that you can limit yourself to?

I think there are two things to tackle here:
Eating at work and eating with your family.

At work, you may be able to limit your intake of higher calorie foods by being prepared ahead of time. Eat a decent healthy snack before work and have something ready for the drive home. That way, you can reduce your portions and your calories. If you eat a snack on the way home (cheese stick and an apple), you'll be less ravenous and less liking to say, "Pizza!" I'm also WAY into visualization. Imagine what you will be preparing and what you will not be eating (There I am spooning out the lasagna to everyone else while I take a tiny portion with a huge salad).

At home, you need to get other people involved. I don't know your family situation but throwing together a salad can be accomplished at all ages and sometimes even by a husband (gasp!). If you broil some chicken breast - and microwave a sweet potato, that's a whole meal. I also do a lot of gigantic pots of soup or vegetarian chili that can be reheated easily or cook on the weekends to reheat during the week (but only when I'm super organized - oh wait! That's when I lose the most weight!).

Hope that helps!
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Old 11-09-2006, 02:41 AM   #3
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I would try to take a sandwich on low cal. wheat bread each day and some fruit. Maybe a cheese stick and some fresh cut up veggies to snack on. As for the family, I feed mine broiled meat, that is quick to cook, a salad and a green veggie each night. No complaints here, as long as they don't have to cook it themselves. A cup-o-soup wouldn't be filling enough for me. Being prepared is the key to success. A quick protein bar or protein shake for breakfast can be very handy when you are in a hurry.
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Old 11-09-2006, 06:44 AM   #4
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Smile Hello!

I like your visualising idea.
I cook for 2 guys at present that are NOT into diet foods.
I can get the plain meal past them. It's mostly when he cooks that I have the most trouble.
He works for a big pizza and sports place and was a truck stop cook for years.
The things I saw go into food-YIKES. He doesn't put a whole stick of butter in a couple quarts of green beans anymore-I flipped right away on that one.
He doesn't drain the meat grease off of beans or if he's making his rare sausage biscuts and gravy-the amount of flour he dumps in that-you can feel your arteries closing.
Yes, I try to do most of it.

If Cobeach can eat before and right after work, she may be able to pick out slimming food choices from their menu or very small portions of what they are eating.
Spread her food out on the plate to look like more than is actually there. I find it tricks my mind if I eat it slowly.
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Old 11-09-2006, 07:36 AM   #5
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Some good advice here. I would go for portion control myself with one other thing. Try and implement healthy choices even with what you are told to cook. For example baked chicken instead of fried chicken. I know my in-laws get food from the government for being low income and even the government is starting to pass out low fat cheese. So try and do what you can there and then just really watch you portions. You can lose eating any type of food. Are some of your clients skinny. If so look at what they eat of the food you serve and do the same. Now I know with some that's not a good thing because I've seen some skinny people that can really pack it away. However there are some that just don't eat much and that is why they are thin. So give that a try.

At home I agree with what was said above. Get your family involved and start learning and teaching a healthy lifestyle. Cooking Light Magazine has some great recipes that really taste great.
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Old 11-09-2006, 07:42 AM   #6
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One thing I like to do is cook food ahead of time that all you need to do is reheat.

1) Rice cooker - cook big batch of brown rice, store in fridge
2) Beans - cook big batch of beans, add in spices, onions, garlic and tomatoes, store in fridge
3) Meat - cook large batch of meat, chicken, beef, pork
4) Frozen veggies - buy a variety of frozen veggies that can be scooped out of bag

So for dinners, I scoop some rice, beans, meat and veggies onto a plate. I cover with a moist papertowel and microwave. I get dinner in 5 minutes. For lunches, I basically do the same thing except scoop into microwaveable dish for lunch. I usually omit meat for lunch though.
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Old 11-09-2006, 09:15 AM   #7
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I need help with my scheduling challenges too. Not quite like her though. I'm 24 and a full time college student. By the time I get home from school I have to go to work. And then after work I have to do homework (gotta keep that GPA up ya know.). And by the time I'm done with homework the gym is closed (we don't have a 24 hour gym here). I purchased myself a mini trampoline, a jumprope, and I have a stationary bike and weights (just a small set). I need to figure out my schedule where I can make time for working out and I need to get like a routine set up. At this point I'm going at it blindly. Also, I can't seem to get motivated...on any of it. I want to lose weight, so badly. But for some reason I don't seem to eat right, or exercise or any of that. HELP!
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Old 11-09-2006, 10:13 AM   #8
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Well as far as the meals go some of the ideas above would work. As far as your exercise. I'm sure you have some classes that have 10 to 20 minute breaks in between. Use that time to go on power walks. I have started walking to work now just so I have a built in exercise schedule. I know that's not possible for some. However most people can find little 10 to 20 minute slots where they could get some exercise. Try to get an hour a day. It does not have to be all at once. Just get moving. You can do it.
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Old 11-09-2006, 10:56 AM   #9
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Good advice everyone, co-beach...what do you think?
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