I typically start each year with the same New Year’s resolution: to be healthier. This hasn’t gone particularly well for the better part of the past two decades, both because I love to eat and I’m the queen of making excuses.
But – fueled in large part by the hubby’s enthusiasm for getting in shape – I’m proud to say I’m starting off 2021 nearly 60 pounds lighter than I was a year ago.
For me, moderation is key. In the past I’ve done things like tried fad diets and decided to become an overnight running sensation, and those types of extreme changes typically last a maximum of three days.
My current “diet” has lasted about 10 months, but it doesn’t feel like a diet; I’ve simply made a lot of little changes that add up.
For example, no food is forbidden (except Old Dutch sour cream ‘n’ onion potato chips, which will always be my Achilles heel). If I tell myself I can’t have chocolate or salty snacks every day, I will rebel against my own authority and eat all of them. I don’t necessarily enjoy taking the time to exercise, but I love to read, so most days, my time on the treadmill or exercise bike is my designated reading time. And, with a little help from COVID-19, our family definitely hasn’t been eating much takeout. I try to eat more vegetables with every meal and I make more deliberate food choices.
The main thing that’s improved for me is the awareness of what I’m eating along with the reminder of how hard I’ve worked to shed weight.
This means I end up bringing a lot of leftovers for workday lunches rather than grabbing something while I’m out and about. I don’t count calories but I do compare them; I know that the burger and fries sound tasty but are roughly 700 calories more than my container of leftovers, and those 700 calories represent about 100 minutes of really intense, sweaty cardio for me. That comparison makes the decision easy because I don’t like sweating intensely for 100 minutes.
I love recipes like this that are healthy, simple to toss together and easy to package up for a quick meal while I’m working. And it’s tasty enough that you’d never guess it’s good for you.
Note: You can brown the pork in oil before adding it to the slow cooker; I like the convenience of the dump-and-go method.
For the recipe, please subscribe to the Banner's online or print edition.