Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Peanut Butter Protein Bar

I tried a new recipe tonight.  Granola bars.   I have never made them before but I've been trying to find a good tasting protein bar that didn't have a ton of crap in it.  So... I came up with this.

The great thing about these bars is that Emily loves them too.  They're a yummy combo of sweet and chocolate.  Really good!

Skinny Betsy's Peanut Butter Protein Bar
Makes 12 bars.
Each bar has approx. 10-11g of protein.

4 cups granola/rolled oats
4 scoops vanilla protein powder
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
3/4-1 cup honey
3/4-1 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup dried, diced apples
1/2 cup chocolate chips

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Using non-stick spray, spray a 9x13 baking dish.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the protein powder, rolled oats and chopped peanuts until well mixed.  
  4. Add the honey and stir together with a wooden spoon until all the mixture is "wet" with honey.  You may need to add a tablespoon or so more at a time until it's all mixed in.  
  5. In a small sauce pan, melt the peanut butter and add it to the mixture.  Use the spoon to incorporate, add more peanut butter if you feel it needs it.  There are really no rules here.  
  6. Add the chocolate chips and apples and mix in.  You might need to get your hands in there and really incorporate it all together.  
  7. Press the granola into the baking dish.  Use a piece of wax paper to press the granola down, it's sticky.  
  8. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown.  Do not over bake or the edges will get crispy... unless you like crispy, then bake up to 25 minutes. 
  9. Let cool and cut into 12 squares.  
  10. Store in an air tight container or zip loc bags for easy snacking! 

Note:  You can sub anything for the chocolate chips and apples... coconut, nuts, white chocolate, berries, banana chips... the possibilities are endless.

You could also pop these in the fridge instead of baking for about an hour and they'd be yummy and chewy instead of solid like these when baked.  

Thursday, January 13, 2011


I have begun to slow down in my weight loss... which is completly normal and typical.  I'm just over six month in and have lost the bulk of my weight.  Now... the long hard road to lose the last of my weight begins.  Exercise, eating right and really focusing is what I'll need to get to my goal!

With that said... since the pounds aren't shedding off as much... I thought I'd measure myself to see if the inches were still coming off.  And I'm happy to report that they are!!

I'm at a total of 59.75 inches lost!  Here's my inches chart so we can take a look back at my progression.  Click on it to make it big enough to read.

You can see that I've continued to lose those inches!!!  Most drastically in my midsection... thank goodness!  Cause that's where most of my weight still is.  

I've got a few more pounds until I hit my next goal of 199lbs... so until then, I won't be posting any before & after pictures.  I want that big milestone to be a big surprise! 

Weight Loss Recap
Today's weight: 208lbs
Total weight loss: 117lbs
Weight loss since surgery: 106lbs

Sunday, January 2, 2011

How my relationship with food has changed

Last week I was interviewed about how I'm able to continue to blog about food (via JavaCupcake.com), enjoy food and lose weight.  It really got me thinking about how my relationship with food has changed over the last six months.

Before the surgery, I loved to eat because of how it made me feel.  I could break open a package of Oreos in the comfort of my quiet living room, have a tall glass of milk and dunk a whole row of cookies.  I'd stop at the donut shop, pick up three of my favorite and eat them while watching The View after taking Emily to school.  I'd eat an appetizer, full entrĂ©e, dessert and a soda while out to dinner with friends.  I would feel satisfied, happy, content... and for those moments while I was eating, nothing else mattered except how it made me feel. I baked and cooked because the food tasted good, because it filled a void, because I was missing something inside and I was using that food to replace it.

Today, my relationship with food is a lot different.  I bake and cook because it makes OTHERS happy.  I get joy in seeing the looks on others faces when they bite into one of my cupcakes.  Sheer joy.  It's almost like a high.  Whenever Dave brings in leftover cupcakes to work... I ask for specific details on what his soldiers said and how they reacted.  I NEED to feel that joy.  It's addictive.

I don't eat food to fill a void anymore.  Why?  Because I physically can't.  My pouch (as I call my stomach) is only a few ounces big making it impossible to get in as much food as I used to.  So, I can't use food to fill anything.  I have to use to it make myself healthy and give my body the nutrients it needs to continue to lose weight.  I have to chose the right things to put in my mouth... and if I don't my body tells me and I get sick.  It's not fun.  Trust me.

So what does that mean really for my relationship with food?  I see food now differently... because I can't use it to enjoy physically... I use it to enjoy my life socially.   Being a food blogger, baking delicious cupcakes and brought me to be a part of a community of people who are like minded.  I have made friends, gone to countless social gatherings and have created memories for a lifetime.... all based on food.  Cupcakes!  Do I have to eat every cupcake in front of me?  No!  I allow myself a bite or two.  I order something I want to eat at dinner... but I don't over indulge.  I use that time around food to enjoy the company I am with.  Food brings people together.  It always have and always will... and I don't have to give that up.  I will embrace it.  Use it.  Enjoy it.

Food has brought me closer to people, made new friends and has enriched my life more in the last year than it has my whole life of stuffing it in my face.

Does that make any sense?

I'm really looking forward to seeing what new connections I can make through food in 2011 and in my travels in Germany, the UK and Europe!!!

This picture was from Dec. 21, 2010. 

Weight Loss Recap
Today's weight: 210lbs
Total weight loss: 115lbs
Weight loss since surgery: 104lbs


BMI - Body Mass Index... it can be quite scary to think about how this number labels you.  Your BMI is a measure of your body fat based on your height and weight.

BMI Categories:
  • Underweight = <18.5
  • Normal weight = 18.5–24.9
  • Overweight = 25–29.9
  • Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater

Before my surgery, I weighed 325lbs and was 5'7''.  My BMI was 50.9.

Today, I weigh 210lbs and am still 5'7''.  My BMI is 32.9.  

WOW... What a HUGE difference.  Although I'm still in the "Obesity" category... That's a lot of BMI points to lose in six months!

I'm looking forward to seeing what my BMI will be in another six months!

To calculate your BMI, goto this site: http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/