Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Be Fearless, accept the change

The weather is changing, that means it’s time to do some Spring Cleaning! I started on Sunday by gathering shirts (size XXL) and pants (size 48) that I don't use anymore and put them into a bag for donations, and then I ended up bagging winter coats. In one way it was hard to say goodbye to my old stuff, but it was just one more step in realizing that I’m not the guy that I used to be six and a half months ago.

Sometimes it’s hard to accept that we are actually changing, but its all part of the Herbal Magic Process. They help you see and accept the changes you are making to a healthier new you.

This week’s recipe is the Fearless Chicken Fingers, it’s easy to make and it takes 25 minutes to get it done:

- Ingredients:

4 oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts (Pechugas dehuesadas y sin pellejo)
½ Cup Corn Flakes (Corn Flakes)
1 Large Egg White (Yema de Huevo)
2 tbsp Fat-Free Salsa (Salsa baja en Grasa)

- Cooking Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350ºF
Cut chicken breast into strips
Coat chicken strips in egg white then roll in Corn Flakes crumbs. To make the Corn Flakes into smaller crumbs I bought a cheap coffee grinder at Wal-Mart for 10 dollars and I granulate my Corn Flakes for my chicken fingers. You’ll see that you won’t use all of the crumbs, but you can still eat them, I put them on top of my vegetables, or you can mix it in with you salsa to get the consistency of a dip.
Arrange chicken strips on a nonstick baking sheet and bake for 20 – 25 minutes. Serve with Salsa for dipping.

This recipe is for one serving and all the ingredients count as a daily intake of 1 Protein, 1 Starch and ½ of your free exchange.

This is a picture of how my Fearless Chicken Fingers ala Carlos looked like at the end with a side of vegetables portions that I was saving for supper, its ala Carlos just because of the Jalapeños that I added to my veggies and to make the Fat-Free Salsa taste even better, I added Habanero Pepper Salsa to it. YEAY! It’s like a Spicy Explosion in my mouth and I Love It! Give this recipe a try and let me know how you like it.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Herbal Magic’s Italian Chicken Bake.

Back in September when I just starting rolling on the healthy lifestyle I thought I wasn’t going to be able to quit fast food. With 16 pounds to go and entering the home stretch of my program, I’ve noticed that I really don’t miss it they way I thought I would. Herbal Magic has taught me that there are ways to still eat all the food that I love, but made in a healthy way.

I’m going to share with you my top recipes for healthy items, items that I love and still taste just as great as the regular fast food items you would get at any other place.

Today’s choice: Italian Chicken Bake:

This recipe is really easy to make. It actually serves 4 portions so you will basically make supper for 4 nights, or if you are cooking for your significant other, you’ve made supper for 2 nights.

- Ingredients:

4 - 5 oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts (Pechugas dehuesadas y sin pellejo)
Black pepper to taste (Pimienta negra)
Garlic powder to taste (Ajo en polvo)
Thyme to taste (Tomillo)
Basil to taste (Albahaca)
1 Cup of Healthy Choice pasta sauce (Salsa de spaguetti)
4 oz shredded mozzarella cheese (Queso Mozzarella)

- Cooking Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375ºF
Place chicken breasts on a baking sheet, sprinkle with black pepper, garlic powder, thyme, and basil.
Bake for 10 minutes and then flip them over.
Sprinkle same spices over the other side and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
Pour pasta sauce over chicken breasts.
Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over and heat up until cheeses melts.

Like I said earlier, it serves 4 and all the ingredients count as a daily intake of 1 Protein, 1 dairy and ½ a free exchange per portion.

I can’t stress enough that we all need to start reading the nutritional value on the food that we eat. Everything that we learn of the food that we put into our bodies will make us a little more conscious on making better decisions that are going to help us in the long run.

Based on the Nutritional Value of food I really encourage you to start eating Healthy Choice Pasta Sauce you can find this at any grocery store.

This is a picture of how my Italian Chicken Bake ala Carlos looked like at the end with a side of vegetables portions that I was saving for supper, it's ala Carlos just because of the Jalapeños that I added to my veggies. Give this recipe a try and let me know how you like it.

I made a promisse that I was going to add this at the end of this blog. Rob Kealy is Awesome.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Carlos Steak & Veggies on a BBQ

Last night I went back to Herbal Magic and I got the best news ever! I've lost 102 lbs! That means I'm only 18 lbs away from my goal weight. I can't believe that what I tried so many times before without results is finally working.

For the last few days I've been actually taking advantage of the gym in my building, and I'm really enjoying it. I get to work out with the same people, make each other laugh, and we encourage each other. I'm trying to get into the habit of getting on the treadmill, setting it up at a steady pace of 6 miles/hour and running like my life depended on it. I've been running 1 mile a day without stopping and to me, that's a huge accomplishment. I remember that last summer when Meg and I used to go running I wasn’t able to run for a while without stopping to catch my breath and because my joints hurt. My knees and ankles are not hurting anymore!

After working out I got home I posted on Facebook and Twitter: “Just ran a mile. A mile a day, keeps the doctor away… And supper looks great!” and then, one of our listeners, Sonia, asked what’s for supper? Herbal Magic gives us the daily planning option to plan out what we want to eat each day, and we get to make it fresh! Last night I had "The Carlos Steak & Veggies on a BBQ" Special. There is really nothing special about it, I just think it sounds cooler.

- Ingredients:

4 oz Steak
¼ cup of Onion (Cebolla)
¼ cup of Carrots (Zanahoria)
¼ cup of Yams (Camote)
½ cup of Beets (Betabel) [I actually had to look this one up, I forgot its name in Spanish]
1 Jalapeño (this is completely optional, I do because I LOVE Spicy food)
1 pinch of Pepper
1 pinch of Oregano
Tin Foil

- Cooking Instructions

Turn on and warm-up for 15 minutes at full blast you BBQ
In the mean time you can go ahead and peel and chop the Beets and Yams, then chop the Carrots and Onion.
Using a piece large enough that will allow you to wrap the vegetables place on your counter and add a light coat of Pam.
Add the chopped vegetables and wrap them securely to avoid any spillage.
Once you’ve placed the veggie wrap in the BBQ wait for about 5 to 8 minutes before you flip them over. Please remember to keep the BBQ Lid closed to help keep the heat inside and cook your veggies throughout.
Season your steak with Oregano & Pepper. The secret to a good tasting steak is, the simpler, the better… Less is More!
Then just time out to cook your steak to your liking. I like my steak medium rare, so I wait another 5 minutes after I’ve flip my veggies over and then I add my steak on the BBQ and cook for a few minutes on each side. Don’t close your lid while cooking your steak to avoid overcooking your steak.

Serve on a plate and Voila!

If you think this is all I had for supper, let me tell you that I also had:

1 apple with ½ tbsp of peanut butter and 1 Chocolate Jell-O pudding and I was pretty much done!

Let me know how you like this little recipe, I hope it works for you as well as it does for me.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Herbal Magic "Cooking 101" with Carlos

I will start posting some recipes that I’m sure anyone can do, your kitchen/cooking skills do not matter. The recipes are simple, fast, delicious and last but certainly not least, healthy!

I like to make these burritos every morning and the cool thing is that you can always change them up to fit any craving you have. I’ll give you the basics and then you can change it accordingly.

I usually buy my groceries at Safeway and Superstore. There are some items I can only get at one place, for example I get Flat Out Wraps (120 calories per) at Safeway. Fat Free Deli you can find it at any market or deli store, vegetables are always great at Superstore. This is how I like to do it just because it helps the morning routine feel like a breeze.

- Ingredients:

1 Flat-Out Wrap
1 Egg (Huevo)
50 gr. Fat Free Deli Meat (Jamón)
¼ Cup of Onion (Cebolla)
¼ Cup of Green Peppers (Pimiento Verde)
¼ Cup of Cottage Cheese (Queso Cottage)
½ Jalapeño
Ground Black Pepper (Pimienta)

- Cooking Instructions:

Heat up a frying pan
While the pan is heating up chop up your veggies
Add a thin coat of Pam and saute your vegetables just to take off the raw onion taste and to make them a little juicier
Add the Deli meat and keep tossing it around to avoid burning
Add the Egg and then just scramble around with everything in the pan.
Add pepper to taste and Voila!
Just add it to the Wrap and add the Cottage Cheese

For fun and to take further advantage of my time, while my vegetables are cooking I drop to the floor and do 30 crunches and 10 pushups…

That way I do a little something to get that blood flowing early in the AM.

Give it a try and let me know what you think.

E-mail me a picture of your final product to carlos@1015energyfm.com

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Did you know ...?

Mother’s Day in Mexico is always on May 10th

I want to give my mom the surprise of a lifetime. Since I was a little Mexican boy I’ve always been a bigger guy, the Big Kid on the Block, and my mom always tried to help me get into a healthier life style. Now, at the age of 29, I’ve manage to do this - thanks to Herbal Magic and the encouragementof my wife.

On May 10th, I'm thinking about flying down home to Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico (4 hours south of Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico) and surprising my mom on Mother’s Day. I haven’t spent a Mother’s Day with my mom in over 9 years. I first moved away from home at the age of 17, that’s back in 1998. Fast forward to today and I’m in Calgary.

Through the years, I used to justify not being with my mom on Mother’s day with “I’m away, she gets it” and I forgot the most important thing of it all, she’s My Mom, and we only get one of those in our lives! This year, I want to do things the right way. I want to be with my mom and hug her and let her hug me all the way; it’s been probably over 15 years since she’s been able to put her arms all the way around me.

If this is the first time you’ve read my blog, then I should probably fill you in. I started Herbal Magic back in September of 2009. At the time, I weighed 339.4 lbs. Six and a half months later, I weigh 244.4 lbs - I’ve lost 95 lbs!!! This also means I’m only 25 lbs away from my goal weigh of 220 lbs. I know that I never would’ve imagined myself to weigh this little ever in my life and I’m really looking forward to this last little stretch. I’ve been told many, many times that it would be the hardest one, but I love a good challenge. If losing weight was easy, there would be no one overweight in the world.

I’m not sure if I’ll be able to go home, but as Mother's Day approaches, I'm sure thinking about it.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Canadian thing to do.

On Thursday I went to Chinook Centre with my lovely lady and one of her friends. The girls made two huge mistakes when they took me to the mall: they left me alone, and they left me with money in my wallet!

I really wanted to get a new gym bag that I had seen in Lulu Lemon previously. It must have been my lucky day - I found the very last one in store. Without any hesitation I bought it. As I was paying I noticed that the little compartment that it had for water bottles wasn’t going to fit mine, so that only meant one thing: I had to buy a bottle from there too.

I asked the young lady at the till to hold off on my payment as I was going to shop around for a bit longer for a new water bottle. After finding the one I wanted and making my way back to the till, I paid and walked away. As I got to Banana Republic, I added up in my mind how much I should’ve paid and compared it to how much I actually paid. At this point I realized they mischarged me, and I had to go back and notify them of their mistake.

I walked in, got the attention of one of the girls from the floor and told her, “I think you mischarged me”. She was very apologetic and asked if they had over-charged me. I just giggled and said, “No, you didn’t charge for my water bottle. I just want to make sure I do the right thing and that the girl who helped me doesn’t get into any trouble because she’ll probably have to pay for it”. The clerk looked me in the eyes and said she was surprised that I came back, when most people would’ve walked away. She then asked me for my receipt and for the water bottle. I gave them to her and I pulled out my debit card to pay the difference. She was punching buttons on the till, then handed both the water bottle and my receipt back to me and said “Thank you for your honesty”. This caught me off guard; I asked her again “how much do I owe you for the water bottle?”. I got an answer I wasn’t expecting: “It’s free. Thank you again for your honesty”.

I walked away in disbelief. A happy surprise! I guess that nice actions are rewarded.

Would you walk away or would you go back and try and do the right thing? I'd like to think that what I did was the Canadian thing to do.