Tag Archives: Giant Eagle

The Chobani Principle

Surround yourself with dreamers, doers, and believers. But, most of all, surround yourself with those who see greatness within you, even when you don’t see it yourself.- Sheila Gerald
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Nutritional benefits aside, Chobani tastes amazing!! It always pairs best with my other love, coffee (especially Starbucks)

 

 

I am Jessica and I have become a Chobani addict. I absolutely love their Greek Yogurt. In fact, to make it affordable, I buy it by the truckloads at Costco. I have been known to make special trips to Costco just to ensure that my supply never runs low. The highlight of my January was that both Target and Giant Eagle had Chobani on sale at different moments, opening up the opportunity for me to explore and indulge in the flavors not offered in the Costco superbox.

Upon opening up my Chobani this morning, (which by the way is a perfect pre-run food item) , and promptly licking off any excess yogurt that stuck to the lid (I am that person), I had a flash of inspiration. What if I approached everything in my life like I approach Chobani yogurt? It may seem like my daily Chobani obsession was easy to come by, but in fact, my relationship with it started very tumultuously.

I have always been a lover of yogurt and a calorie counter. Even when I was at my highest weight and was totally out of shape, I was still aware of every calorie that I consumed. I was never mindless about my destructive choices. That being said, I was locked into eating “Light and Fit” yogurt because it was 80 calories and fat free. I kept hearing about Greek yogurt and all of its benefits, and yet I just kept eating the yogurt that had little to no protein and that had artificial sweetners just because it was 80 calories versus the 140 in most Chobani individual fruit cups.

How many things in life do we get stuck on, even good choices, when something great is out there waiting for us but we refuse to even try? “Light and Fit” was a good choice, but Chobani has turned out to be a great choice. Chobani leaves you feeling full, the flavor is much richer, and it has more of all of the good stuff that your body needs. (I was NOT compensated at all for this post. In fact, nobody at Chobani even knows I exist.)

The Chobani principle, which I invented in case you didn’t know, has turned out to be a small step to a lot of big change. I had honestly never eaten Quinoa, Hummus, or a whole other host of body nourishing and delicious items before because I was stuck on eating “diet” foods and ate what was familiar.  It is an educational experience to learn that not  all health foods are diet foods. In fact, chia seeds have an enormous amount of calories and almonds are chock full of fat. There are a lot of good things in life, like calorie counting and watching what you put in your body, but there are even greater things like focusing on your health and achieving specific wellness goals. There are containers of Chobani in every area of your life just waiting for you to peel the lid off and give it a shot.

Can you believe that I used to cook and serve Minute White Rice for my family and myself? I am horrified every time I think of it. My 899 pound bag of organic brown rice that I buy at Costco tastes so much better, fuels our bodies, and the only change it required for me was to actually buy a rice cooker and realize that minute rice might have been a good choice for one season, but greater choices were out there.

FYI: Rice cooked in a rice cooker is infinitely more delicious that what is cooked on the stove or microwaved in some lab generated instant package.

I guess the point I’m getting at is that the Chobani Principle applies to everything. What paradigm shift do you need to make (for example obsessing about calories at the expense of true health and nutrition) that will take you to the next level? What products do you have brand loyalty to that might not be the best option for you and your long-term mind, body, spirit goals?

Paradigm shifts that I’ve encountered since turning 30:

  • I used to hate running and could never run even a mile—I’m now a marathoner.
  • I used to obsess about my weight all the while watching it creep up or yo-yo everywhere—–I now stay within a 3-5 pound range with minimal “extra” effort (I still count every calorie and run like a crazy person so I guess some of you think that’s way more than minimal “extra” effort, but it’s really not. It’s habit now.)
  • I used to think texting was horrible and didn’t even have it on my cell phone plan. I mean, why can’t you just call me?——I finally added it to my plan and now hate being called. Hooray for convenience!
  • I used to obsessively clean up every single item my kids played with and dragged out without concern of the stories they would tell their therapist about Type A mom one day—–I now wait until they are on the bus to restore the order I need or wait until Sunday night/Monday morning before I take everything they own and hide it somewhere. They actually are now allowed to play in the family room and have books and toys in there and their therapist can be regaled with stories of how cool and fun mom is instead of how she was obsessively cleaning 24/7. It’s almost like they live in their own home and have rights associated with that just like I do… Fancy that!!

As you can see, there are many ways to apply the Chobani principle. How will you step out of your comfort zone today to see long-term goals realized?

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Shameless bragging in 3, 2, 1……….Both boys had parent/teacher conferences yesterday and both boys are rocking out in academics and behavior at school. Maybe I gave them just enough of my Type A to succeed, but not enough to cause psychological distress 🙂

Celebration Thursday

Running is a funeral for your fat. Let sweat and tears flow freely!

Today is Thursday and there has been a lot of celebrating going on. Thursday is an oft underrated day of the week.

First, last night was a milestone. I had ice cream for the first time since Mother’s Day. My  3 whole days of strength and will power are to be commemorated.

Secondly, we tried a brand new pizza place specializing in “healthy” pizza and it was amazing. It is called Pizza BOGO and their whole business model is around hormone free, antibiotic free, and organic ingredients. They have a flax seed miracle crust and were running a special for as many large unlimited topping pizzas you want just $5. I was in vegetarian, clean eating heaven. Anytime you tell me pizza is healthy, I’m going to make you proud with the vast amounts I consume. I will definitely be revisiting Pizza BOGO frequently.

The third and final celebration related directly to me is that I ran 6 hot miles thinking I was going slow, but realized I was going quite fast and had an epic run, seemingly without effort. Day 549 of the runstreak was completed well. I also had an epiphany regarding self-image during this run. I realized I don’t care what people who look at me and watch me run think. I used to only run in the metro park because you rarely encountered cars or people. I thought others were judging my pace, sweat, or stride. Today I’ll gladly galavant anywhere soaked in sweat and salt crystals. I earned my stride. I’ve fought for my pace. I’ve also realized that most people just stare because they are truly amazed you would run so much with no one chasing you. I smell admiration off them. (On a side note I passed a PTA mom on my run with her hair perfectly coiffed, fully made up, and a cute yoga outfit on doing a little perfume scented jog in the neighborhood. I did not let that deter my salt infused, hair soaking wet, BO scented self-esteem from running proud.)

20130516-175604.jpg Gentry celebrated yet another trip to the grocery store with mom. He gets free cookies when we go to Giant Eagle and gets to drive the car. We were also celebrating my very healthy choice to take advantage of the 4 (12 packs) for $11 coke zero sale. In all honesty, my soda consumption is significantly lower than it was a year ago. I’m baby stepping away from drinking it all together. I’m not even drinking a can a day, however I do dream of it often so that is why I write about it so much.

20130516-175611.jpgToday we are celebrating Reese’s amazing participation in our LifeGroup Bible Study last night. Of his own volition, he took out a notebook and pencil and wrote down scriptures, memory verses, and took notes on the lesson. He also participated like a champ. That boy is hiding God’s word in His heart.

20130516-175623.jpgWe are celebrating Reese running faster than any other kid at the Forest Elementary School Family Fitness night.

20130516-175631.jpgWe are celebrating how much fun we had at Gentry’s end of the year picnic at his pre-school with all of his friends and the fact that I ate no desserts at the potluck and stuck with fresh fruit and salad. I really am better behaved than I let on, but it’s not as much fun to share all of my good choices. Bad choices are more intriguing.

20130516-175648.jpgAnd the biggest celebration of the week is that Gentry graduated from Pre-K like a champ. He is now a certificate holding finisher of John Knox Presbyterian pre-K and armed with all the knowledge he needs to take Kindergarten by storm.

20130516-175700.jpgCelebrating family: Mimi with her boys at Gentry’s graduation

20130516-175716.jpgCelebrating Gentry’s stellar performance skills. This kid has no fear of public speaking, singing, dancing, and poem reciting. Be on the look out for him on the front page of your favorite news website someday. This beats his former no fear of removing his pants in public. Thankfully he grew out of that stage so you aren’t reading about him for less than savory reasons.

What is worth celebrating in your life this week?– I am celebrating that tree pollen seems to be climaxing. I see the light at the end of the tunnel. (As I look through watery, red, itchy eyes glazed over by springs finest torture makers)

What is one of your favorite new “healthy” food discoveries? Seriously check out Pizza BOGO

Body Building

If you don’t take care of your body, your body won’t take care of you.- @rwchallenge

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A peek at my lunch today. Who says Oatmeal has to be for breakfast? Oats, Cinnamon, Bananas, and Strawberries. Yum!

I saw the above quote on my twitter feed and it was a great way for me to start my week. As you know if you follow my blog, my birthday was last week and I gave myself an excuse to basically not monitor my eating for an entire week. I’m a firm believer in moderation and I am against dieting. I dieted on and off my whole life and even dabbled in disordered eating at one point and I know God did not create our bodies to need nourishment and put us in a Garden of Eden initially so that we couldn’t enjoy His bounty. That is where reality comes in though. We are to enjoy His bounty. I’m pretty sure he wasn’t envisioning a steady diet of Pop Tarts and Burger King when he created our digestive system. So, because I am against dieting and a believer in moderation in all things, occasionally I deviate from the pledge I made to myself to eat clean, eat natural, and run away from processed/man made food. I’m not a health nut, but I am a wellness evangelist and my body operates with infinitely more energy and zest when it has been worked out and fed properly. My clean eating and life long health pledge is back full swing and my stomach and skin couldn’t be happier. I normally only “cheat” a day at a time, or a maximum of a weekend. This is the first time I’ve basically reverted back to horrific eating patterns for a whole week stretch and I forgot how greasy it makes you look and feel!

As a side bar, Sunday’s are my day “off” running. I always run 2 miles at 5 AM so that I’m warmed up and awake for church and to keep my run streak alive. In order to stay injury free on the run streak, you have to have a day or two a week with very low miles. I call this a day “off” because I do not care about pace at all and I never go farther than the 2 miles. I can’t imagine my Sunday without this short run. It enables me to be refreshed and have quiet minutes to get my mind on the worship set for the Sunday and align my Spirit with the mind of God. I got my 2 miles in yesterday and did  4 miles this morning followed by a 1 mile walk. I was so ready for this week running wise. I am very excited for the Capital City Half Marathon this Saturday and my tired legs are getting rested up so I can try to OWN the day Saturday.

20130429-075140.jpgI started eating clean again on Saturday. Here is an example of “Fast Food” you can allow yourself that is way tastier, less expensive, more filling, and will fuel you far better than the engineered ingredients you will find slapped on a bun and in a bag at a Fast Food establishment. I was very busy on Saturday so I didn’t have time to plan a feast, but with some forethought and a decently stocked pantry you can put together good meals quickly. I always keep some sort of whole grain pasta on hand. Notice that there is a lot of protein and fiber in it. Don’t run away from pasta. It is your friend, but you definitely want 100% whole wheat pasta or 100% whole grain and not white pasta. I sautéed a large pan of fresh spinach with garlic, bought a $4.99 whole roasted rotisserie chicken from Costco when I was loading up my cart for a week of fresh, clean eating (Giant Eagle also sells these. Eat them without the skin), and served them all together with some tomato sauce. The pasta was probably $1.30 for the box and the spinach was a couple of dollars. So, basically for less than $10 a family of 4 ate a healthy, vitamin packed meal. This same family of 4 could not have eaten at Taco Bell, McDonald’s or any other such joint for the same price. Healthy eating does not equal pricey eating if you plan well.

Now, in the interest of full disclosure I will tell you two things:

  • My kids will not touch spinach, so that made getting them vegetables at dinner challenging, and
  • I will never buy animal crackers again. I have found that I “buy” them for my “kids” and then am tempted to eat the whole allotment by myself. Truth be told, my kids could take or leave them so I will buy them things they like that I’m not tempted by instead of things they are iffy about that if I’m honest I buy for myself.
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20130429-075035.jpg A peek at the Costco Bounty. Pears, Strawberries, Bananas, Spinach, Plums, Celery, and Toilet Paper are all geared for a Clean week of eating 🙂 You may have a house full of runners if your banana corner looks like that.

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At a birthday party yesterday I realized how Reese is the ladies man of his second grade class (Help me Lord) and that boys think Barbie’s are totally gross. Gentry thought the birthday girl wasted her entire party because she didn’t get any sports gifts.

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My theory that Gentry was in a growth spurt was confirmed this morning by the pants that fit him just a week or two ago. Babies turn into men when you’re not even looking. Make it stop!

What is your favorite healthy  meal?

What is one snack that you need to stop buying because you are too tempted to dive into it?

I am addicted to Costco! What is your “go to” store to load up?