•June 9, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Wondering why there haven’t been updates in while? It’s because I’ve moved to my new domain, where I’ve been doing all of my updates! Going forward, please visit http://nutritionfor.us/ for all of the exciting, delicious and motivating articles you’ve come to love!

Please also visit http://realisticwedding.wordpress.com/ for updates on my wedding planning!

Eat Skinny, Be Skinny: Kabobs

•May 29, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Summer is finally upon us, which means cool drinks, hot temperatures and bar-b-ques!  However, these summertime soirees can be serious diet busters if you aren’t careful! Instead of worrying about your calorie intake when you are supposed to be having fun with friends and family, grill up a dish that is not only delicious, but super healthy! Elliot and I made these kabobs recently and they were so good, we are doing them again tonight! You can switch up your proteins if you are not a beef person, chicken, pork and even fish work just as great!

Skinny Beef Kabobs

1/4 c. reduced sodium steak sauce
1/4 c. low sodium soy sauce
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
1 t. dry mustard powder
2 dashes of italian seasoning
8 Portobello mushrooms, cut in fourths
8 oz 98% fat-free stew beef
3-4 green red bell pepper
2 onions, trimmed, cut crossways

Mix steak sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, mustard powder and italian seasoning. Add the beef cubes to mixture. Mix and saturate the beef in the sauce. Marinate for 1 hour.

Soak 8 skewers in water. Pre-heat grill.

On each skewer alternate protein with vegetable, or add more protein or vegetables to your taste. Grill until beef is tender, but not too pink.

Nutritional Info: 100 calories per skewer, 1 gm. fat

Superfood of the Week: Avocados

•May 27, 2010 • Leave a Comment

This green, soft and delicious superfood is more than just the main ingredient in guacamole, it’s chock full of health benefits and weight loss elixirs! The avocado is known as a fat fighter due to the fact that it is high in monounsaturated fats, or the good fats. According to SELF magazine, dieters who consumed these healthy fats lost more weight, especially in their stomach, than those who didn’t eat them. Your blood sugar can send signals to your body to store fat around your abdomen, however, these healthy fats stop this from happening, which prevents fat accumulation. Call them the super hero of all fats!

The fats found in avocados not only slim your waist, but they also keep your heart strong and healthy. According to the American Heart Association, the fats in avocados lower your risk for heart disease by lowering the amount of LDL cholesterol [bad] from your body. Avocados are one of the few fruits that provide this good fat.

And for an added bonus, avocados are naturally low in calories [50 for 1/5 or 2-3 slices of an avocado]! That is  half of the calories that are in a slice of cheese!

Are you one of the many who love the health benefits but can’t stomach the taste of it raw or the consistency? Don’t worry! Below is a recipe that even the pickiest of eaters will love! Courtesy of California Avocado.

photo courtesy of Maria Cooks.

Italian Guacamole


  • 4 ripe, Fresh California Avocados, seeded and peeled
  • 1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. shredded fresh basil leaves, or about 1/3 that amount dried
  • ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  •  ¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and chopped
  • ¼ cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Instructions

    1. Coarsely mash (DO NOT PUREE) avocados
    2. Stir in vinegar
    3. Fold in remaining ingredients

    Serving Suggestions:
    Serve with crispy bread sticks or crostini.

    *Large avocados are recommended for this recipe. A large avocado averages about 8 ounces. If using smaller or larger size avocados adjust the quantity accordingly.
    Guacamole is best made as close to serving as possible. For short-term storage, seal in an airtight container with a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the guacamole.

     Nutritional Information: 200 calories per serving, 18 gm. fat, 4 gm. protein [so enjoy sparingly!]

    Some big changes going forward…

    •May 25, 2010 • Leave a Comment

    Hello friends, fans and readers! I wanted to let you all know of some changes being made to this lovely little blog! I’ve thought long and hard and think they will only make this a better, more informative and more interesting blog!

    1. I am no longer going to be doing resolution days. This was  a tough decision, but in the end, I think it will be in the best interest of the blog. I’m sad I wasn’t able to keep it up throughout the whole year, but am very proud of myself for what I have accomplished thus far. Life happens and I was unable to post everyday, which left me to feel stressed out and anxious  because I was behind, which is not feelings I want, especially about this blog! I will, however, finish my updates for April and will end in May. That doesn’t mean that I won’t still be posting new and exciting things I’m going to try to help me become fitter, smarter, healthier and happier, just not in the same format. I think this change will make my blog easier to follow, easier to relate to and easier to read! I hope you all still chose to stick with me as I continue to bring you top quality “stuff!”

    2. I will be moving over to my website [www.nutritionfor.us] in May! My fiance and I are doing some hard work on it to make sure it’s as fun and easy to read as this blog. I’m just ready for a new face and look to my blog and think this new platform will only increase my readership and gain more traction!

    3. I would like to introduce my exciting, new categories! Meal Makeover, Pump it Up and Keep On Smilin’. All of these will be updated once a week and will contain ways to make your favorite dish healthier, pump up your exercise regime for maximum results and daily tips on how to be happier. I’m definitly wanting all of these to be user friendly, so if any of you have any recipes you’ve made over, really great workout tips or happy advice, please send my way!                                                                                                                      

    I wanted to thank EVERYONE who is a dedicated follower, you are all why I do this 🙂 I can’t wait to see how everythin unfolds!

    Days 24-25: Add a dab of excitement…

    •May 24, 2010 • 2 Comments

    It’s not that my life is boring, persay, it’s more that it can be rather seriously lackluster at times, which is normal, I know. However, as I mentioned in a previous post, I tend to get very stir crazy and can go a bit mad if there isn’t something exciting on the horizon. Although I have plenty to be excited about in a few months [my trip to Italy] and this year [My wedding!] there are still gaps of dullness that drag me down. Sadly, I’m also on a tight budget [due to the two exciting things I just mentioned] so I need some low-budget, free ideas to add some pizzazz to those boring days and weekends. So below, you will find some ideas on how I plan to spice up my life. I’m open to suggestions and more ideas, so leave a comment or drop an email if you know of any! It took me two days to compile this list, but I”m excited!

    Learn to cook

    I’m not a horrible cook, but I’m not great either. So what better way to spice up my life than to add some zest to my meals? Before I sought help from a professional [a cooking class] I wanted to try to teach myself the culinary arts. [Obviously with a little help from my hubby-to-be].  Now learning to cook is not a one, or even two, day thing, but is something that I can do when I’m feeling bored with my life. 

    So how do you teach yourself to work? Well with help from Food & Wine magazine, it’s rather easy! If you want to add some spice to your life [AND your dishes!] top chefs [like Tom Callichio] would read cookbooks, cover to cover. If you don’t have the time for that, try following a few simple pieces of advice I’ve picked up from friends, family members and colleagues who have mastered their kitchen.

    1. Commit to cooking everyday. Whether it be something small like scrambled eggs or something larger like a roast chicken, find time to be in the kitchen everyday. You can’t learn if you don’t practice!

    2.  Find a technique cook book, that not only gives recipes, but helps beginners [like me, who barely know the difference between a tsp and a tbsp!] Some good suggestions are Tips and Techniques to Cooking Like a Pro, Anthony Bourdain’s Less Halles Cookbook and Betty Crocker Cookbook.

    3.  Focus on fresh ingredients. The best dishes are made with the best ingredients and the best cooks only use fresh food. So follow in their footsteps and try to use fresh fruits, produce, meats and breads in your recipes.


    Sign up for a fun, reoccurring dance class

    I am  an embarrassment when it comes to dancing. My skills rival that of Carlton, but not nearly as cool. I’m a klutz and uncoordinated, which make dancing something to dread.   So to overcome my fear of dancing and lose some weight at the same time, I decided to sign up for dance classes.

    Now, finding dance classes for serious beginnings was a bit tough, but I found a great resource local to DC! Joy of Motion Dance Center in Bethesda caters to the worst of the worst [me] to near perfect dancers. I signed up for the Intro to Hip Hop dance classes. The price is a bit steep [$85 for 5 weeks] but I think the benefits totally outweight the cost. You can burn up to 500 calories per hour doing hip hop dances and dancing will add some spice to my social life!

     These tasks should add some excitement to my life, and if I start to get bored again, you better believe I’ll feature another post with more fun, easy ways to add a bit of fun and spice to your everyday!

    Calorie Counter

    •May 19, 2010 • Leave a Comment

    This is, by far, the coolest online calorie counter. It really motivates you to put down that donut and grab a peach! [Or in this case, a stick of sugar-free gum!]

    Interactive Calorie Counter

    Day 20 [Wedding]: The big O

    •May 16, 2010 • 1 Comment

    I know what you are all thinking…and no, I’m not referring to that O. [Not in this post, at least!] I’m referring to the big ol’ O of organization! Not quite as exciting but just as necessary for a healthy, happy life…and a successful wedding.

    I was in desperate need of an organizational game plan for my wedding. My house was cluttered with wedding magazines, notepads with inspirational ideas, wedding books and photos. Even worse off was my hard drive, which was loaded with saved internet pages, wedding documents and to do lists and thousands of emails between my bridal party, my vendors, and myself.  My wedding life, put frankly, was a f***in’ mess! So on day 20 [a day that will live in my mind as the one that saved my life] I gathered all my documents from the house and printed all the documents on my computer and sat down to organize, color code and stick them into a wedding binder. A daunting task, but at this point, I was in need of some serious help and was willing to try anything.

    As a girl who never understood the power of organization, I was shocked  to see how much easier [and less stressful] it made planning my wedding. After my binder was built, I became a devout believer in the big O. [See pictures of this paper miracle below.]

    As you can see from the photos above, this binder has a place for everything and anything that relates to my wedding. It has theme inspirations, accessories, favorite dresses, vendor contracts, gift bag ideas and our menu. It also has wedding day timelines and to-do lists. This baby has it all and it has already saved me from a few major meltdowns.

    So brides to be, I highly  recommend making a wedding binder. If you aren’t a fan of the binder [or don’t want to lug around something that weights 20 pounds] create a wedding folder on your desktop or in your inbox where you can save all of your emails, to-do lists and inspirational ideas. Having one place that houses all of your wedding information will not only save you time, but can also save you money and keep you from unnecessary freak-outs.  It may seem time-consuming to build this binder or save EVERYTHING, but in the long run, the extra few seconds will be worth it. I can’t tell you how many times, already, this binder has come in handy during conversations with a few of my vendors. It is such a time and life saver to have everything easily accessible and in one place.

    If you’d like more information on my binder and what I included, comment your question or shoot me an email! I’m more than happy to assist anyone! [claire.gllam10@gmail.com]

    I can’t stress enough, an organized bride is a happy bride!

    Days 21-23: Add some intervals to my workout

    •May 16, 2010 • Leave a Comment

    This is how I feel I look…

    and this is how I want to look.

    How do I get from Point A to Point B? With a kick a$$ exercise regime and a healthy diet, but of course! Luckily, thanks to my pre-wedding nutrition plan, my diet is flawless nearly flawless. My workouts, though, could use a bit of pumping up. So on day 21, I wrote up a high intensity, high fat blasting workout that will work alongside my diet plan to get me those slim, sexy abs. [And nice legs and a great butt too!]

     So what is the number one way to add intensity to your cardio workout? Interval training! Interval training works both the aerobic (making energy with oxygen) and the anaerobic (making energy without oxygen) systems.  During the high intensity minutes, the anaerobic system uses the energy stored in the muscles for the short bursts of high activity. Basically, interval training consists of switching back and forth from a lower intensity workout to a higher intensity workout. What are the benefits? This type of training allows the body  to build new capillaries, and is better able to take in and deliver oxygen to the working muscles. Also, interval training increases weight loss efforts because by challenging both you aerobic and anaerobic systems simultaneously, you’re improving your body’s ability to burn calories.

    So to show off how I added interval training to my cardio routines, I made this graph. A few things to keep in mind while looking at it. This represents a 30 minute workout [including 5 minutes for the warm up and 5 minutes]. Below [before the graph] is how I spaced out each intensity.

    As you will also see,  the RPE [rating of perceived exertion] increased each day I did this. [The RPE scale is as follows: 0-no exertion at all to 10-maximum exertion possible, very hard work]. I did this for 3 days so adapt your intensity on how often you plan on doing this!

    Warm Up–5 minutes

    Low Intensity–4 minutes

    High Intensity–2 minutes

    Low Intensity–4 minutes

    High Intensity–2.5 minutes

    Low Intensity–4 minutes

    High Intensity–3 minutes

    Cool Down–5 minutes


    Nutrition in the News: The Bright Side of Wal-Mart

    •May 13, 2010 • Leave a Comment

    With all of the negative news surrounding Wal-Mart, it is good to finally see some positive light shine on the mega-retailer. As stated in an article featured on MSN, Wal-Mart plans to donate two billion dollars to help end world hunger. The two billion, which is more than double what Wal-Mart usually donates, will be given to food banks as well as turned into food stamps.  The plans come in two parts. At least $250 billion will be awarded in grants to support refrigerated trucks, which help to keep food fresher on the journey from warehouses to stores. However, the bulk of the donation will be over 1.1 billion pounds of food to be donated to food banks. All of this money will hopefully provide over 1 billion meals.

    People shopping in a food bank. Photo courtesy of 4 and 20 blackbirds WordPress.

    I’m not a huge fan of Wal-Mart, never have been and probably never will be, but I do applaud them for doubling their charitable donations and reaching out to give back to the community. Hunger is something that affects billions of people world-wide and it’s about time one of America’s most successful retailers recognized this. However, if you do some research, Wal-Mart is still slightly behind on their donations. For example, Kroger grocery stores donated over 50 million pounds of food in 2009, which is more than Wal-Mart had donated.  For a graph on this, visit http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/37106519/ns/business-retail/.

    However, as happy as I am that they are doing this, I can’t help but wonder if they are doing it for the right reasons. Wal-Mart is currently in a huge class action law suit in relation to their employee welfare, more specifically gender discrimination in the pay roll. The question that looms in my mind is “Is Wal-Mart doing this just to save face?” I hate to question a good deed..But blame it on the journalist in me.

    Eat Skinny, Be Skinny: Guilt-Free Cocktails!

    •May 11, 2010 • Leave a Comment


    It’s summertime, and the livin’s easy my friends. The weather is warm and the sun is shining, so what better way to celebrate the lazy days of summer than with a nice, cool cocktail? I’m a big fan of the cocktail, and until recently, I have shunned them from my normal routine due to the fact they are high in sugar, fat and calories and can derail your diet faster than you can drink them. However, after doing some research I found some delicious, cool as the summer breeze cocktails that are low in calories and sugar but full in flavor. So kick your guilt to the curb and grab one of these drinks to cool you off during the hot summer months. [Add a cute little umbrella for extra pizzazz!]


    • 3/4 oz fresh lime juice
    • 1 packet Splenda
    • 4-5 fresh mint leaves
    • 1 ½ oz light rum
    • 2 oz club soda
    • glass of ice cubes

    Pour lime juice into glass. Add mint and Splenda, stir until dissolved. Add rum and ice cubes, followed by club soda. Garnish with a fresh spring of mint.

    Nutrition Facts: 172 calories


    • 3/4 small flute champagne
    • 1/4 flute peach puree

    Spoon peach puree in bottom of champagne flute. Fill to top with champagne.

    Nutritional Facts: 95 calories, .5 gm. fat

    Bloody Mary

    • 22 ounces reduced-sodium V8
    • 1 teaspoon horseradish
    • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 10 dashes
    • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
    • 3 ounces vodka, optional
    • Ice cubes


    1. Shake V8, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, Tabasco, pepper and vodka, if using, in a large glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Fill two tall glasses with ice and divide the Bloody Mary between the glasses. Garnish with olives, celery or nothing!

    Nutritional Facts: 78 calories, 2 grams protein

    Pina Colada Cooler

    1 1/2 ounces coconut-flavored rum
    3 ounces pineapple juice
    4 ounces sparkling water
    1 tablespoon of Coco Lopez Cream of Coconut Lite (found in the drink mixers section of many supermarkets)

    Pour ingredients over ice and stir. Recipe is courtesy of Fitness Magazine.

    Nutritional Information:  165 calories

    Skinny Mini Mango Martini


    4 ounces of Fruit 2O Strawberry Kiwi or Citrus)
    1 1/2 ounces vodka
    Splash of pineapple juice
    Splash of lime juice
    Splash of orange juice
    Muddled cucumber


    1. Shake ingredients together vigorously

    2. Pour over ice into a rocks glass.  Recipe is courtesy of Fox News.

    Nutritional Facts: 110 calories

    Basic Low Calorie Margarita Recipe

    • 6 ounces of a diet lemon-lime soda 
    • 1-2 shots tequila
    • 1/2 teaspoon sugar-free lemonade mix
    • 1 1/2 ounce lime juice
    • Citrus wedges for fun garnish (limes, lemons, oranges)


    Blend ingredients together in a blender with 1 & 1/2 cups ice. Add more or less depending on how thick you like your frozen margarita. You can also serve this mixture on the rocks if you don’t have a blender or do not care for frozen margaritas.


    Use Diet Sprite or Diet lemonade for the best tasting margarita!

    Nutritional Facts: 200 calories

    Not a fan of any of these? You can easily make your favorite drink low-calorie and low sugar by switching up your mixers or your alcohol.  Alcohols that are lighter in color [vodka, gin, light rum and light tequila] always tend to have the lowest calorie count.

    This list, compiled by WebMD, lists the best mixer choices for someone calorie and diet conscious.

    • Diet soda or diet tonic: 0 calories
    • Orange juice (6 oz): 84 calories
    • Cranberry juice cocktail (8 oz): 136 calories
    • Light orange juice (8 oz): 50 calories
    • Light cranberry juice (8 oz): 40 calories
    • Light lemonade (8 oz): 5 calories
    • Coffee, tea: 0 calories
    • Baja Bob’s sugar-free margarita or sweet ‘n’ sour mix: 0 calories
    • Lemon or lime juice (1/2 oz): 10 calories
    • DaVinci or Torani’s sugar-free syrups: 0

    Grab a drink and enjoy the dog days of summer, with no remorse! [Until the next day, that is :)]