Good News and Bad Timing for My Weight-Loss Plan

September 25, 2013 | By | Comments (12)

I’m a pound away from reaching my 20-pound goal for the #SocialDiet, and many others in the group are seeing exactly the same success. To summarize, we’ve found that setting up a small, social group for mutual support around exercise and eating is a mighty positive thing for weight loss. Calorie tracking, which we do with MyFitnessPal, is essential. Reaching the 10K steps goal is easy when everyone is aiming at the same goal and using a tracking device like UP or FitBit (Sean Kelley broke 40K steps the other day on his 40th birthday, a group record!). We have recently held a couple of Google+ Hangouts to talk about our experiences and there will be a feature article in the Jan/Feb 2014 issue for those interested in starting their own groups on our model. We were the guinea pigs, but readers will be able to benefit.

scott-carrot-soupThe good news for me is about food: the arrival of fall, which puts me into soup, chili and pressure-cooker stew mode. I like soup, but not much in the summer because I don’t like it served cold. Fall flavors make for filling dinner soups without much fat and no need for cream. Vitamix sent us a mixer and it’s a soup monster. I like to make a basic, thick soup and then garnish with high-flavor additions. The photo shows a base of roasted carrots, a few boiled small potatoes, and a big, chopped onion that was sautéed until soft in a generous glug of olive oil with oregano, thyme, a bit of curry powder, a wee bit of smoky bacon, and some fiery harissa paste. The whole mess was then dumped into the Vitamix with low-sodium chicken stock. The jet engine in the machine turned it into a smooth, rich, complex soup.

The soup’s garnishes are interesting: Mexican chorizo that I fried and crumbled: little salty nuggets of spicy meat. Plus I made a tarragon-Meyer-lemon oil. So easy: put the peel from one Meyer lemon (from New Zealand!) in a small food chopper with olive oil and a wad of tarragon. Puree. Let sit for a couple of hours, then strain the oil.

The bad timing bit is simply fall’s dark mornings and evenings; it’s straining my running schedule. I loathe treadmills, spin classes and any sort of classes. Anyone have a suggestions for cold-weather aerobics? Gotta get my 10K steps per day—I may just bundle up, buy a reflective vest and “enjoy” the coming cold and dark days…

Share your advice! Comment here, email, and tweet @ScottMowb or @Cooking_Light using #SocialDiet.


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    September 15, 2014 at 4:41 am
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    May 14, 2014 at 11:32 pm
  3. Elisa

    Ԍreat post. I’m facing many of these issues as well..

    February 6, 2014 at 7:13 pm
  4. lisalarocco

    A lot of my friends that are runners say they like to run in the cold weather better than the warmer weather, just getting so running clothes that are made for the cold weather.

    I also love pressure cooker soups and stews. They are so tasty and healthy for you because the pressure cooker locks in the nutrients. You can find some of my favorite recipes at:

    November 22, 2013 at 11:55 am
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    Scott, GREAT JOB!!!!
    I lost 60 pounds and have kept it off for 5 years. You can do this too.
    May I kindly suggest some indoor weight training. I added strength training with lighter weights/higher reps to my cardio. Strength training really gets your metabolism up and you lose weight more quickly.

    October 14, 2013 at 12:19 pm
  6. Amy Large

    Where is the recipe for the carrot soup? Looks yummy!!

    October 3, 2013 at 8:55 am
  7. Ivy

    This might sound a bit obvious, but my dogs keep me moving! There’s nothing like their cold, wet noses and a wagging tails on a cold, wet morning to keep me honest. Not only do they get me up and out for “walkies” rain or shine, but they also keep me from taking short cuts. They insist we are out walking for at least 45 minutes. If I try to take a short cut or turn back early I get the two sets of doleful hound eyes staring at me. Talk about motivation!

    October 2, 2013 at 3:31 pm
  8. Amy

    Darker mornings are a challenge for a little while, as is the colder weather. But you’ll adjust to the change in light and layers are your friend. I find that I run more efficiently in colder weather. There is just something about crisp air to keep you alert and motivate you get home to the warmth a little more quickly. Good luck!

    September 25, 2013 at 4:30 pm
  9. Megan Hannan

    But don’t dress too warm – you will warm up a lot once you get moving. My biggest mistake this time of year is over-dresssing – by December I’m wearing less.

    September 25, 2013 at 3:46 pm
  10. lleessaa08

    Agree with Laura. Just dress warm and you’ll be plenty comfortable!

    September 25, 2013 at 3:10 pm
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    September 25, 2013 at 9:21 am
  12. Laura

    Just wear warmer clothes, get out and run! Don’ let the weather tell you that you can’t

    September 25, 2013 at 8:24 am

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