Quick Cup-size Recipe with Kale

It was the last day I could use the Kale I bought at the Farmers Market last weekend.  It had started to wilt in the crisper, I took the small bunch of Kale rinsed it in the sink and chopped the kale with my kitchen scissors, I added half of a red onion diced and 3 cloves of fresh garlic.  I added a splash of water and olive oil to attempt a cross between steam and sauté for the mix.  When the color popped on the Kale and it was deep green I put it into the cup then using the leftover olive oil in the skillet I scrambled an egg for protein on top of my semi-salad-sauté with a shake of garlic salt.  It took less than 10 min to make!photo-blog

Small Bunch of Kale

Half red onion diced

1 TBS Minced garlic

One Scrambled Egg

Dash of Garlic Salt on top!

Plato and Steve finding the good life

In order for someone to find the good life or ideal state, it is crucial according to Plato that the 3 aspects of the soul are balanced.

Reason – your intellect that craves truth
Spirit – your will and personal choice that craves honor
Appetite – your desire and passion that crave matters of the world (sex, food, shelter, money, in no particular order.)

This seems to line up easily with the Fill Your Cup weight loss system.

Reason: cup size portions.
Spirit: move every day and have a community of people on your side
Appetite: what are you hungry for, do you know why? Check it with reason and fill your cup!

A student of mine was diagnosed with serious prostate cancer. He is an optimist, has remarkable will and soul alignment. He asked me to train him in Pilates deep core work every day prior to surgery this month.

Steve’s Cup:

Reason: He is meeting with the best doctors he can find, eating a vegan diet advised by a naturopath
Spirit: He has a huge network of friends, family and coaches who believe in him and all that is possible preparing him for surgery.
Appetite: He has radically changed his diet and said that in a week the vegan fresh organic life foods are all that he craves.

He’s beating odds daily. He’s armed with cutting edge brain research, absolute faith and in my opinion a harmonious soul that Plato would applaud.

What would you do if aligning your soul and caring for your body the best you could were a matter of life and death?

Healthy Recipe

Responses to our last blog post (especially the Face book Responses Thank You Carrie for sharing!) indicated that eating fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts and drinking water are healthy. Let’s start with the vegetables. To eat more vegetables, getting organized is half the battle.

#1) Shop for what is in season. If there is no one knowledgeable in your favorite produce market look for the freshest, brightest most vibrant vegetables you see. My standard is if it doesn’t look and smell like what it is “supposed to,” I don’t buy it. (It goes for fruit too, if an apple smells like wax chose something else.)

#2) Chop and store in sealed containers. If you chop a healthy mosaic of Veggies at least once or twice a week you will eat much better because meals are convenient. If you plan to enjoy your vegetables as a salad keep the dressing separate until serving or your beautiful salad will have a 48 hr life even in the refrigerator.

#3) When you have limited time for food prep you have your chop ready to go you just add a little cheese or meat or whatever you need to make that cup feel like a meal.

What I chopped this week: 1 bulb of fennel, 2 leeks, one head of broccoli, 4 stalks of celery (the others from the bunch I sold to my kids with peanut butter) 1 shredded fresh beet, the seeds of 1 pomegranate.

I dressed it with: some apple cider vinegar, a splash of balsamic vinegar, lil maple syrup, walnut oil, some crumbled blue cheese and then topped it with honey caramelized walnuts.

Fill Your Cup and save the rest for later.

Consumption

So eating less is hard. Consuming fewer calories (thereby having a body that moves well, looks healthy and feels good to you) is just too difficult? Right? Let’s take 2 min and examine what consumes your day. Are you full of anticipation, meetings, accomplishments, responsibility, uncertainty, are you working a list, one that you designed so that you can be the best you can be?

Sometimes we use food to loosen up our schedule to relieve us of our responsible, restricted, grown up life. Some days eating is the only point in a day with any creative choice or exploration (But do we consciously agglomerate Blue Cheese, Thousand Island or Ranch with a creative choice and exploration? not really.) Don’t get me wrong I think there is blessed creativity in eating. I believe some of my best meditations happen tasting over the stove. I love exploring exotic flavors from a restaurant menu but those aren’t the over-eating meals. The day to day, over indulging is what packs the weight on. The meals when you’re frantically racing through the grocery store, and you buy things that you know you’ll consume hedonistically because your mind says, “I’ve had a hectic day so, I deserve it” or you order more than you should out at a dinner meeting because it’s 7pm and you’ve been working 12 hours already and your mind says “shouldn’t I be allowed a little fun?”

Is mealtime the only time in our day for free will? If lunch or dinner are the only down time/being time/breathing time/me-time is it any wonder that we want to consume everything around that time excessively?

The Power of Quiet

As the season’s change and we approach spring I’m adding a daily challenge for myself – daily meditation. For those “Keepers of the Cup” feel free to follow suit. Here’s how it will work, in addition to keeping a food journal in twitter (I’m @j_fill-your-cup) and reporting am, noon and pm cups of food and exercise, mood or motivational tweets I’ll be twittering my meditation spaces. I am hoping to carve out a minimum of 10 minutes at sunrise and sunset to find stillness in my spirit. Meditation for me has often been in my kitchen chopping or cooking in my “cauldron.” I cook soups and stews that evolve as I settle in. This spring I’m breaking out to find even more meditation options.

But why?

The new quarter of our year brings new challenges that clutter our lives. It is mostly stuff we love – fundraisers, new business goals, workshops, spring break, planning summer and a few things we dislike, conflicts at work or home, and taxes ugh! But seasonally my plate gets too full and suddenly I am short tempered, my expectations of those around me soar, my sleep is disrupted and then weight gain — why am I eating like this? A few extra handfuls of nuts and I’m up 5 lbs!? A little tipping the cup (over-eating) here and there and my exercise feels sluggish then there’s …yikes! My jeans, oh my, the jeans are tight in the least flattering places.

I have learned through failure and frustration that my personal balance is essential to juggle life in sync with my goals. So when you get overwhelmed with the outside noise of life and before you order a pizza or pick up some trail mix, make some time and care for your inner spaces.

Fill Your Cup from deep inside

* Tell all your friends about this blog and website, we learn from each other’s experiences and from sharing our own. If you’re new, Fill Your Cup is a lifestyle for slim and conscious living. Explore the website there are free core exercise clips and an audio sample of the book Fill Your Cup. It’s never too late to start feeling lighter! You’re right on track, jump in right now, bring a friend on this journey with you reading the blogs, following me and other keepers of the cup on Twitter or sign up here to receive email updates

What is your story? Jennie Sikora 2011 Chapter 2

NO THANK YOU!!

I have learned the power of simply saying “No Thank You”. I wish I could say that I said it all the time this month but I didn’t. However, I learned that it is the simplest strategy to adopt my new eating habits. This month has been a challenge, but every goal that is worth it, is never easy right?

I travel a lot for my job and many times have no control over where or when I am going to eat, so it makes it difficult to plan my meals. I was starting to feel like an alcoholic being dragged to bar after bar. I felt that I had to explain to everyone what I could eat or not eat and how much. (On a side note-It is amazing how that triggers feelings in the people you are with). I was getting frustrated with other people’s questions the “Why’s?” Why am I trying to live a lighter lifestyle? And “What’s?” What are all the things you do in the Fill Your Cup life style? It’s eating less, eating only when your hungry, eating to a point that you are only 80 percent full so, still a little hungry. These conversations regarding the why and what caused me to give in several times because I didn’t want to explain it. At one point, I laid in my hotel room questioning if I would even be able to do this. When I was loosing my motivation and feeling embarrassed that I could not get a grasp on this, I reached out to Julie. She reminded me of my goals and put things into perspective. That helped me a lot. I actually looked at my long term goals and began my visualization. To fit into my goal jeans is a lot more rewarding than a dessert at a customer dinner or more food than my body needs. It is something I am starting to say everyday to myself to help keep those thoughts in the front of mind instead of pushing them to the back.

On my next trip, I simply said, “NO THANK YOU”, when offered tempting foods or more portions than I needed. I found that was so simple. No one was asking any questions. Just saying “No Thanks”, shut everyone up-End of Story. It is so strange and I guess a bit basic, but I started to feel empowered by the word “NO”. I actually looked at my long term goals and began my visualization. To fit into my goal jeans is a lot more rewarding than a dessert at a customer dinner or more food than my body needs. I am not “there” yet but for the last week and for my next two business trips it is definitely helping.

Things I am learning:

I have to be held accountable. I am getting better at my tweeting. If I eat it I have to write it. I was “avoiding” my food journal tweets when I did not make good choices. I decided that I HAVE to write it down. I am learning to ask myself, “Would you want to say you ate that or that much of it?”

If I do make choices that are not favoring my goals, I can not loose motivation. I cannot turn one set back into 5 or 6 setbacks. Once it is over it is over and my next decision or choice can be better. By saying “No Thank You”, I am getting control within situations I can not control. So the decisions and choices are MINE.

RELAX

I’m posting this photo since it is one of the very rare photos I can find of myself “relaxing.” I used to say that the hardest thing for me about subbing a yoga class was to que Shavasana as something other than a nap. Relaxation doesn’t come naturally to me, yet it may be the most important element in acclimating to a change in lifestyle. I employ it out of necessity.

Long-term successful weight loss comes from making it comfortable, and relaxing into the boundaries of the cup (your portion.) Try not to resist the edges or bump into the top of the cup wondering if it is supposed to have a lid or examining where exactly is the bottom – relax into it and enjoy what is there. Forget all that doesn’t fit today. There is always room in your cup tonight or tomorrow for the craving that doesn’t fit in this meal. Relax into the limitations, they are there for your liberty, ease of movement, freedom to feel, independence from any addictions and the sovereignty to realize your dreams. Fill Your Cup.

WE

My close friend is dating a man who has started asking her to move-in with him – with what we used to call the “assumptive close.” He drops “we” into daily meal planning and furniture purchases. “We can take this to our home one day,” or “We should get this gadget to make better steaks.” She is sensitive and attentive yet this verbal que is not enough for her to start packing.

There is something special in the formality of a request. “Please join me for dinner?” or “Will you come to this class that I think you will love?” or “Will you move in and share this home with me.” It is more than a meal or a class or even a roof over your head. It is an invitation to share your very self. A place for joining your mind (maybe body and spirit too) with another person, during that shared time or space.

I realize I am like her lover, with his “We” I assume the blog readers are in the same tribe as I, you all get it – you know that I want to include you in the process of staying slim. Yet, perhaps I haven’t made the formal request:

Will you join me in this space of mind-share? Will you join the quest to feel lighter, to move every day, to blog your thoughts-challenges and successes, tweet your meals and share this journey to live light and true to your self?

There is something stabilizing in We. I have a hunch that the more of us there are in the We, the more stabilizing it will feel. The more people you know who keep the cup the more “normal” that cup will feel. You are endorsed by other people’s reflection of your beautiful transformation and they are endorsed seeing themselves in you.

There may be struggles with holding your own little cup but you are not in it alone. We support you!

* Tell all your friends about this blog and website, we learn from eachother’s experiences and from sharing our own. If you’re new, Fill Your Cup is a lifestyle for slim and conscious living. Explore the website www.fill-your-cup.com there are free core exercise clips and an audio sample of the book Fill Your Cup. It’s never too late to start feeling lighter! You’re right on track, jump in right now, bring a friend on this journey with you reading the blogs, following me and other keepers of the cup on Twitter (click here) or sign up here to receive email updates (click here)

Free Weight Loss Coaching:

Get a pen and paper or open a word or pages document and write down what exactly is your real goal is for you body? Get specific. Don’t just say I wish I was thinner or in better shape. Be more specific, make it meaningful to you. What is your ideal Jeans size or shirt or dress size? What is your goal for weight, lightness or balance or agility? Take some time with this it is your physical being and it is important.

Now ask yourself, “is there anything I am unwilling to do to achieve my goal?”
Are you willing to be hungry before you eat?
Are you willing to leave space and stop eating before you want to?
Are you willing to workout out in some way every day?
Are you willing to awaken your body by trying a new class or practicing at a deeper level?
Are you willing to make better choices for your cup (your meals) consistently? (Ex. Are you willing to cut down on fast foods? Are you willing to pass on the sweets and pick more sustaining foods?)
Are you willing to feel what choices with food or friends or life feel good or bad?
Are you willing to stop complaining about your body?
Are you willing to celebrate your wins?
Are you willing to build some self discipline?
Are you willing to increase your water intake?
Are you willing to believe it is even possible for you to achieve your goal?

Take a look at this list and although it is a short list, how many of these are you really willing and unwilling to do?

Get to know what you are really willing to do. If you are not really willing to make the changes you know you will need to achieve your goal, then go back and evaluate the goal for your body. Decide how much you really want it then stop complaining about where you are with your body and ENJOY your life!

* If you’re new, Fill Your Cup is a lifestyle for slim and conscious living. Explore the website www.fill-your-cup.com there are free core exercise clips and an audio sample of the book Fill Your Cup. It’s never too late to start feeling lighter! You’re right on track, jump in right now, read the blogs, follow me on Twitter (click here) or sign up here to receive email updates (click here)

Yea, but…

I’ve spoken to a lot of people interested in weight loss this week. I have a Fill Your Cup workshop coming up on February 7th and in order to determine if they want to invest a couple of hours and a few dollars, people want the premise of Fill Your Cup.

So here it is:

1. Eat less what fits in the cup of your two hands
2. Eat what you are truly hungry for, what fills your cup?
3. Stay connected keep your food Journal through twitter (follow j_fillyourcup) and read the blogs – the blogs are like your weekly meeting for inspiration
4. Move daily

This is when I often hear, “Yea, but….”

I answer the objections people have, but never try to close, why? “Yea but” is my clue that this person isn’t ready to change, yet. This is the clue that their old patterns are so precious that they could follow a “diet” with a prescription and a promise for a season. And then the moment that season passes and their energy wanes their old habits (the ones that made them bigger than they want to be) will be back stronger than ever.

The deal is, there is no prescription with Fill Your Cup only this promise: If you let me help you change from the inside out. If we go though the painful process of growing up with how we relate to food together. You will be thinner and the change will be yours. You own it from the inside out. You will never diet for weight loss again.

Fill Your Cup