Tag Archives: food

[Day 4: Sometimes You Just Gotta Do It]

I almost skipped the gym again today. Almost. This time it was more because of the lack of food in my system and what I wanted to make was going to take me a few hours. I usually don’t like to go to the gym or work out right after eating. But I grabbed a subway and devoured it cause it had been 6 hours since I ate breakfast. I was just going to go home and start cooking dinner because cháo vịt (duck rice porridge/congee) was going to take a while to cook since I made the base from scratch with beef bone. That whole process took at least 3 hours before I added the rice to make rice porridge, but man, was that bowl of duck congee so good. Funny thing was, I didn’t really have a recipe for it and I had never made it before. I always ate it when my mom made it or at the restaurant. I remember there was a really good restaurant that specialized in duck congee back in Vietnam, it was over by my bà ngoại’s place. Man was it good.

The weather today, especially in the morning, called for a sort of soup or warm dish with the off and on gloomy weather and rain. So it all worked out, because I originally was going to make the duck congee yesterday but didn’t get a chance to because I didn’t have the time to. All I had to work off of was an ingredient list (just list of ingredients no measurements of any sorts) and the general order of how things should happen. Ingredients included bone, duck, ginger, garlic, onion, fish sauce. So yeah, I’m really happy with how it turned out. I should have used less rice though my porridge is definitely more oatmeal/porridge texture than the watery porridge my mom makes. Live and learn, next time I’ll just use 1.5 cup or even 1 cup of rice instead of 2. Still so good though, so much flavor!!!

But I regress, working out. I finished rotations at 1pm today, and I went to Target and ended up getting a racket and balls for racquetball. I didn’t like the racket they let me borrow yesterday because it got my hand all dirty and black. I also got a more active wear swim top. I wanted a one piece, but I swear my body’s too oddly shaped that I had the hardest time getting them on. I opted for a tank that i’ll wear with my batman bikini bottom. That way it won’t show my midriff. I always found it too weird to wear a string bikini to the pool to swim laps. My intent with all of this is that I’ll start swimming too, once Auntie Flow leaves. I ended up eating subway afterwards cause I couldn’t ignore my hunger anymore. I was planning on holding off until working out, but realistically working out for nearly 2 hours when famished… totally not a good plan. I already get woozy enough getting off a treadmill after I’ve been on it for a bit. So I was about to give n and decide that there was no gym today. Nope, after I devoured that 6″ subway, I felt okay and went straight to the gym. Man was it worth it. I would have stayed a little bit later, but I was wanting to come home to make that congee.

[The Numbers]

  • Weight: 122.6 lbs
  • Water Intake:  750 mL by 12pm, 750 mL after work out, 750 mL by bedtime = 2250 mL total
  • Workout Time: 40 minutes playing racquetball, 40 minutes in the weight room, 30 minutes on treadmill = 110 minutes

[The Meal Plan]

  • Breakfast: Chobani greek yogurt, 6 oreo cookies
  • Lunch: Subway cold cut 6″ sub – lettuce, tomatoes, spinach, olives, pickles, cucumbers, and chipotle sauce
  • Dinner:  cháo vịt – duck congee (or rice porridge); definitely homemade and satisfying as expected
  • Snack: N/A

[Day 2: Importance of Water]

Up to 60% of the human body is made up of water. Water does important things to the body such as flushing out toxins, hydrating your cells, maintaining intravascular volume so you can sufficiently transport blood and nutrients throughout the body, and even prevents constipation (that’s pretty much how Miralax works – draws water into the stool to loosen them up).

The Institute of Medicine determined that an adequate intake (AI) for men is roughly 3 liters (about 13 cups) of total beverages a day. The AI for women is 2.2 liters (about 9 cups) of total beverages a day. There’s an actual equation that you can use to calculate how much water you should be taking a day. I found one on SlenderKitchen, and here’s what it says. You just take your weight in pounds and multiply it by 2/3 and adjust according to your activity level, adding 12 ounces for every 30 minutes of activity (i.e., exercise).

I actually don’t know what weight to use for this one at the moment. Perhaps my initial weight of 123.6 since the new 121.6 pounds is rather a result of losing some of that excess water retention. Baseline I’m getting at 82.4 ounces (2436 mL) of water, then add another 20 ounces (591 mL) for working out I guess since I’m trying to do 45 minutes cardio and then some strength training.

Total water intake requirement: 3027 mL

Yikes, it looks like I need to start drinking some more water. I’m tired of needing to go pee all the time though! I feel like water just goes straight to the bladder within 20 minutes of drinking it. And if anyone was curious, the reason why I list my water intake in mL is because my water bottle has the capacity of 750 mL, and it’s pretty much the only line on the bottle.

Asides from the importance of water in our body, it also plays a role in weight loss too from what I’ve read while searching the internet. Here are some facts that I found on the internet. (I feel like I should find better more reliable sources than some of these, but these are all I have for now).

  • Drinking a lot of water can replace liquid calories, which will cut down your daily caloric intake and help you lose the weight. Remember 3500 calories = 1 pound! One can of Coke has 182 calories or so, therefore  one case is 2184 calories! That’s 0.62 pounds! Juice has a lot of calories too. For instance, orange juice has 110 calories in 1 cup, and apple juice has 113 calories in 1 cup.
  • Water can also help you not eat as much. According to CNN.com, it’s recommended that you drink 2 cups of water before each meal
  • There was a study, also mentioned on CNN.com, stating that people who had a small bottle of water before each meal, loss on average 15.5 pounds compared to those who didn’t who lost 11 pounds within 3 months. (Study Abstract found on PubMed). Apparently they did further analysis, and showed that if you keep it up even after the diet it provides benefits (loss of 1.5 pounds opposed to gain of 2 pounds).
  • Reduce water retention. One of the most common reasons why you have water retention in the first place is due to inadequate hydration. Your body wants to save as much water as it can so it can function properly. By keeping your body properly hydrated, the body doesn’t feel the need to store all that excess water for future use. Clearly that’s how I loss 2 pounds over 24 hours, because I’m sure it wasn’t from the deficit in caloric intake or the amount of calories I was burning or even the amount I was sweating when I was working out.

Another thing that I came across recently was the whole thing about how Victoria Secret models use water to their advantage when they are preparing for a show  (Article Can be Found Here). Pretty much what they do is keep themselves adequately hydrated up until they need to slim down for a show (think 1 gallon of water a day), and then decreasing your amount of water to regular habits 2 days before the show, and then 12 hours before the show to stop drinking any liquids. This causes the skin to “suck in” due to the decrease in water, essentially the dehydration, to give the illusion of being slimmer and weight loss. However, this is just a temporary solution and only works if you’re well hydrated prior. I just thought it was an interesting technique, but not really one for the interest of toning down and losing weight more definitely.

But if you’re read all of this, reward yourself with a glass of water. It’s good stuff.

Apparently in 24 hours I managed to lose 2 pounds (123.6 pounds yesterday), and I’m pretty sure the majority of it is water weight. I’ve been rather bloated lately too since that wonderful time of month is about to arrive. So drinking water helped with getting rid of the water retention in general.

[The Numbers]

  • Weight: 121.6 lbs
  • Water Intake: 750 mL by 11:30am, 750 mL by 1pm, 750 mL by end of work out, 375 mL in the evening = total intake = 2625 mL
  • Work Out Time: 50 minutes – 30 minutes on the treadmill (2 miles – I’m can’t run for the life of me) and 20 minutes playing racquetball with myself (the people who booked the racquetball room I was in showed up)

[The Meal Plan]

  • Breakfast: 100 calorie English muffin with peanut butter and honey with a medium French vanilla iced coffee from McDonalds (140 calories)
  • Lunch: Healthy Choice’s Top Chef Café Steamer – Grilled Chicken Pesto with Vegetables (310 calories)
  • Dinner: Bánh hỏi (a Vietnamese dish consisting of rice vermicelli woven into intricate bundles topped with chopped garlic chives), some steak cubes, and an ear of corn 
  • Snack: 1 granny smith apple with fat free french vanilla yogurt fruit dip

Almost There!

… Okay. I’m notorious for starting something and not quite following through with it all the way. But to my justification, I haven’t really made anything that was appealing enough to photograph, and when I did it was the stuff I already photographed before (i.e., tacos, pasta, apple crisps, etc.) The food supply in my kitchen is dwindling down as expected. The last time I went to the store to buy food was  10 days ago, and even then it was just for some fresh produce and fruits.

I hope I should have the majority of everything cleared out by the time I move out of my apartment (tentative moving everything date is next Friday). A whole bunch of eating out time for me, if I do run out of food cause there’s no point in going grocery shopping. Not because I’m moving to a new apartment, but because I’m going back to CO for intermediate rotations.

Today marked the last day of classes for my P1 Year of Pharmacy school! I technically have only one more year of classes (P2 year) before I go on rotations (P3), and then it’s graduation! It definitely doesn’t feel like almost a year has passed since I left Colorado. I moved out here on the 15th of August.

I only have Finals to tackle and then I’ll be back in my home state for three whole months. Since I’ve moved out here, I haven’t been back in CO for any more than 2 and a half weeks at a time. And I’ve only been back three times, between each semester. That might change after I get back, depending on whether or not I can find an internship to partially fund extraneous desires. I’m currently eyeing this coach purse (madison op art multi sateen sophia satchel). I typically don’t even like purses, my last purse I bought was my NineWest purse I bought back in ’08, and I don’t even use it that often. I typically just use one of those metal ID card holders for my wallet and call it a day. I guess this is more of my attempt to be a grown adult. There’s something about going around with a backpack wearing professional clothes that doesn’t scream a professional woman. I find that I’m really picky about purses too apparently, I’ll go to Kohls and whatever and look at the purses they have there, just to look to see if anything has potential. But for the most part, none do. This coach purse was the first to catch my eye, and I wasn’t even intending on it. I was curious when I was browsing for purses one night cause I was not studying like I should have…  But yeah, too bad that purse is $298. Anyone want to buy it for me? My birthday’s coming up in three months… It’d totally make me look super cute?

11 more days before I get to go back to sweet ol’ Colorado!

On a side note, my heart goes out to those affected by the shooting last night at the movie theaters. (Gunman turns Batman screening into real-life ‘horror film‘). I was fortunate enough that my friends who live in Aurora didn’t go to the movies. I just wonder what goes through a person’s head that day, prior to going out to a public place to do a random shooting. In the end, I can’t fathom it at all.


Okay. The last few posts haven’t had anything really to do with food. I seriously don’t even remember what I’ve been eating lately, frozen burritos, and had some dinner at a friend’s for her birthday. Last night I made some Bun Nem Nuong (Noodles with Cured Ground Pork). I’m eating that for a while because I had a chunk of the nem nuong to eat that was in my freezer. And I really do like it. I also went to the store yesterday to get some fresh produce.

It was the first time I made it on my own, so I didn’t brown the meat enough last night. When I did it again today, it was a lot better but I was starving so I scarfed that down before I thought to take a new picture of it. All that is on a bed of shredded green lettuce, spearmint, and fish mint. I also made fish sauce to go with it to mix things up like you’re supposed to. Fish sauce (Nuoc Nam) was the first authentic thing I ever learned how to make, my mom always made me do it when I was growing up. I mean, I’m not counting rice here cause all I did was stick it in the cooker.

But this is how the dish looks like mixed and everything. I really like my veggies so I always put an abundance of them in there. I’m really bummed that I forgot to get the bean sprouts when I went to the market yesterday too. I was super excited about those bean sprouts, I was going to do the pad thai again but with bean sprouts this time. And this was going to have bean sprouts, and I was even going to maybe make meatball pho to get rid of the meatballs and pho noodles that I have.

But that’s about it when it comes to delicious food. I had another frozen burrito for lunch with a yogurt and my standard cereal for breakfast. I was going to make apple crisp again tonight, but I woke up from a 2 hour nap at 8pm and all my motivation has left me and it’s getting a bit late for that. Perhaps I’ll do that tomorrow.

And on a side note, I’m meeting with the potential roommate (hopefully confirmed future roommate) for lunch tomorrow after class and all that jazz. HOPE THINGS GO WELL FOR ME!!!

No Pictures Today :(

I ate quite a bit of what I had within my fridge today, but I didn’t actually do any cooking. It’s been a super long day for me, and as I write this post I’ve pretty much been awake for 20 hours after having slept for only 4 hours or so prior. It was probably one of my rougher mornings to get up cause I had been sleeping in every day since last Tuesday cause of the holiday break during school. But in any case, breakfast I had my GOLEAN Crisp! Toasted Berry Crumble with some milk. Went to Professional Pharmacy Practice Lab, then ate my Chobani Yogurt – Passion Fruit flavored as I was studying and waiting for my class to start. After class I ate one of the microwavable burritos that I had in my fridge for lunch. It was pretty good. I guess I grew up liking them, and I mean I know what good Mexican food is like, but there’s a spot in my heart that will forever be there for cheap frozen Mexican burritos. Then I went to take my exam (Got a 95% on it, huzzah!). Then therapeutics class, and afterwards went home to eat some potato salad that I had bought a week ago from the grocery store. A few hours later, I went over to my friend’s to eat a birthday dinner which consisted of baked chicken, rice with curry and sauteed cabbage, and a piece of tiramisu cake. After I got home from that I ate two peaches….

And despite all that eating today… I’m now hungry. BUT MEH, I’m gonna go to bed hungry.

I’m thinking about making the pad thai again tomorrow, or maybe a quesadilla?

More food?!

So… my phone pretty much died yesterday as I was taking pictures of my dinner. But pretty much yesterday I had the rest of the Spinach Shrimp pasta from the day before for lunch, and dinner I had shrimp pad thai, and cut up my last granny smith apple to make a mini apple crisp. That was delicious. I really want more, but unfortunately I don’t have any more apples at the moment. I probably won’t go to the store again for another few days, so until then I’ll work with what I have. As for the Pad Thai, I had a box of the Thai Kitchen – Pad Thai Noodle Kit, I started to follow the directions but then my natural instincts from when I made Pad Thai back at the restaurant kicked in and I stopped following the directions after I scrambled my eggs and soaked my noodles. I really wished that I had some bean sprouts to go with the pad thai though, that would have b been amazing. But at least I had some fresh lime hidden away in my fridge that I was finally able to use and that definitely gave it a tangy flavor. I also threw in some crush red peppers in the mix too while I was cooking it. I was trying to get the sauce to caramelize on the noodles, but that didn’t really work out well so either it’s the sauce or my pan. I haven’t figured out which it was yet.

Today I ate cereal and milk for breakfast, and well now I’m currently eating tacos with left over chicken from the day before the day before. Downside of living alone and cooking for one is that I always have left overs no matter what I do, and I never want to eat them immediately afterwards. I’ll probably make shrimp pad thai again tonight, and maybe that Roma Tomato salad… or maybe just the roma tomato salad alone with a quesadilla or something. Who knows. Maybe if I feel like it I’ll make some pho with meatballs.

But enough of thinking about food, I have a Pharmacology exam tomorrow that I need to start studying for. Originally when I was finally going to start studying for it, there was a little water mishap in my apartment as for whatever reason water started to come up from my carpet. No clue why, so I had to call the leasing office to get their maintenance guy over here. He still hasn’t shown up yet, but I did my job as a tenant. Hopefully they’ll give me some sort of cut in my rent for my next least, this is the fourth water incident I’ve had to deal with since living here and I’ve only lived here since August 15, 2011. I’d move if it wasn’t such a hassle, and the fact that I love being able to walk to school.

We’re Down to 25

I was going to upload a post every day about what I’ve been eating and everything, but there was nothing all that exciting about it. I had tilapia (seasoned with garlic powder, pepper, sugar, and a little salt) in some spring rolls with my pineapple hot sauce (mam) that I made a while back for two evenings. Tacos using some chicken thighs that I had again as well. I guess I had that two nights in a row.

For my Spring Rolls, I had the tilapia, rice vermicelli, green lettuce, cucumbers, spearmint, and fish mint (rau dap ca). The pineapple hot sauce was made with crushed pineapple, sriracha sauce, and some shrimp paste with sugar here and there until I was satisfied with the degree of sweetness and spiciness. It’s something my mom got me hooked on when I was a kid growing up. I was craving it and finally gave up waiting until I came home to Colorado during breaks to eat some of my mom’s version. I pretty much just knew of the ingredients and thus winged the whole process, throwing them into my food processor. The result was pretty decent and I was most definitely satisfied with the results. I ate the last of it when I ate the spring rolls the second night. I guess I won’t be having any more spring rolls in a while. Sad day.

For my Tacos, they’re just.. well tacos. I guess I had these for two nights since the last post as well. So I alternated between spring rolls and tacos. They were just chicken tacos. Nothing special I guess. For my chicken, the first night I used the left over chicken from the last post and shredded it before tossing it with some taco seasoning that I had in my cupboards. The second night, I just cooked two chicken breasts the same way, but it was so good I got distracted and forgot about the taco seasoning so those were just plain. For the complete taco ensemble, I had corn tortillas, sour cream, lettuce, corn, salsa, and a bit of Mexican blend cheese. That was pretty much it for me when it came to tacos. Some enchiladas right now, or a carnita burrito from Santiago’s back home sounds amazing right now.

At some point, I also made pasta with Parmesan breaded tilapia. I seasoned the fish with cayenne, pepper, and some salt, with garlic powder. Then just did a typical breading, with panko bread crumbs. I did a garlic olive oil light sauce to toss with spinach and tomatoes. I also had a side salad where I used balamic vinaigrette as my dressing.

Yesterday I was a bad girl, I didn’t really do much cooking of any sorts. I just ate one of my lean cuisines. And then afterwards, I went to KFC and got some potato wedges, and somehow ended up leaving with the desired potato wedges and the mac and cheese. The mac and cheese wasn’t as satisfying as I was hoping it’d be, and I put extra shredded cheddar jack on it too. I guess working at Noodles&Company for three and a half years spoiled me when it comes to mac and cheese and nothing will ever be comparable to it.

This morning, I ate a bowl of cereal, then cleaned my apartment and all that jazz. After that was done, I went onto SuperCook.com and went to see what I could make with what I had again. I ended up deciding on making a three course meal: appetizer, main entrée, and dessert. Of course, with the recipes I found, I had to scale down too, otherwise I’d be eating everything for days and that’s no fun for my tongue.

For my appetizer, I made a tomato salad of sorts: Roma Tomato Salad with Feta and Garlic. This was delicious. I was surprised at how well it came out and everything. I did have to substitute the fresh basil leaves for dried basil. I can only imagine how much better this tomato salad would have been if I had fresh basil leaves. I wish that basil plant of mine survived these past few months. Perhaps I’ll buy another one when I come back out here at the end of October. Basil is by far my favorite herb, I love it in pizza, and always sprinkle a dash of it in my pasta regardless of what kind of pasta it is.

Then comes the entrée:  Spinach Shrimp Fettuccine. Originally, I wanted to make something with salmon tonight but I guess I just couldn’t decide what I wanted to do with it, because I had some spinach left over that I needed to eat before it went bad, and then I also had some left over pasta from another one of those nights. I guess I had pasta at some point between the last post and now too, cause last time I had left over linguine. But this time, instead of using fettuccine noodles (since I don’t even have any), I used up the rest of my already cooked cellentani noodles. I also had some shrimp that I needed to eat by some point too before the month is over, so I figured why not. I’ll figure out what to do with the salmon at some other point. The pasta is definitely delicious. It definitely packed a light flavor to it, and it was quite satisfying. When it called for italian seasoning, I didn’t have any but looked up a few home versions of it to get an idea of what to put in. In the end, I used dried basil leaves, thyme leaves, oregano, crushed red peppers, garlic powder, and some of this peppercorn medley that I had in my cupboards. The results was delicious, I will definitely be making this again at some point.

Finally, dessert: Amish Apple Crisp. It’s been a while since I’ve had an apple crisp, and I actually really do like apple crisps. I like them plain even, without the ice cream to accompany it. I wasn’t even planning on making a dessert, but I was looking through SuperCooks, and I figured what the heck, let’s see what sorts of desserts it says I can make with the ingredients I had in my kitchen. I needed to take care of the apples that I had in my fridge anyways before they’d get too old and not tasty. So I guess that’s what I did, and I winged it. It actually just came out of the oven and smells delicious. For the actual apple layer, only put 1/8 of a cup of sugar to it instead of the 1/4 cup that it told me too, cause I really don’t like eating things that are too sweet. I also mixed some of the cinnamon into the topping layer too instead of just sprinkling it on top. I just finished eating some, and it’s DELICIOUS!

So yeah, that concludes my food update so far. I haven’t gone to the store yet to buy actual groceries! (I did go to the store to pick up some milk, oatmeal, and more sour cream though for future tacos). As of right now, I’m planning on making some shrimp pad thai, and one pan fish tacos at one point. But we’ll see where this food journey takes me.