Sunday, April 29, 2012

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Protein Brownies: recipe bust

I found this post I started almost a year ago in my drafts!  I thought I would post it despite it being a while back!

I have been wanting to make my own protein bars for a while.  I searched the internet for some recipes.  I ended tweaking one of the recipes I found and this is what I came up with.

Before you run off to your kitchen and go to start preparing this deceiving little morsels, let me give you the low down. The name was deceiving.  The wonderful aroma that wafted in the kitchen was deceiving, I gotta be honest with you, they weren’t very good, at all.
So if I were to rate them on a five star scale it would go as follows:

Chocolaty goodness**
Energy Boost****

Although these bars were down right gross, I had to give them 4 stars for keeping my energy up and warding off hunger.  Often times I need a boost and I crave something sweet, but what I really need is a swift kick of energy to keep me going.  This nasty bar did it for me.  So rather than dump them all in the trash I have stashed them away in the fridge.  The recipe recommended cutting them up into 8 bars.  I could only stomach ½ a bar, and still was given the boost I needed.  The nutrition information is based upon 8 bars though.

One other problem I had with the recipe…. It recommended cooking the batter on waxed paper, which I did.  I could not remove the wax paper though.  I pulled what I could off, but there was no way this paper was coming off.  Maybe next time I will try parchment paper, or just spray the pan.

Please let me know if you try them out and have better luck!!  Or if you have a good protein bar recipe I would love to try it out. Thanks!

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Protein Brownies
8 Servings

½ cup old fashion oats
½ cup whole wheat flour
1 ½ cup vanilla flavored protein powder or 6 scoops (I would have done chocolate, but I didn’t have enough)
½ cup dry unsweetened cocoa powder
2 egg whites
1 tbsp chocolate syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup natural peanut butter
½ cup-1cup water

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Blend oats until flour.  Add remaining dry ingredients.  Mix egg whites, chocolate syrup, vanilla and peanut butter in large bowl.  Add dry ingredients.  Slowly add water until "gooey". (this does not turn into a batter; it is very thick in consistency).  Pour into 9x9 pan lined with wax paper.  Bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from pan and cool on cooling rack.  Cut into 8 bars.  Refrigerate. 

211 calories per serving
18 grams of carbohydrates
10 grams of fat
26 grams of protein
3 grams of fiber

Keep in mind that nutritional content will change with brand of protein powder

I Am Back!!

Well, I am gearing to get this blog back up and rolling.  This is my lengthy explanation of where I have been and what I have been up to!

A couple months back I had to stop. Stop all of it.  Initially it was all of my internet time consuming task, but mostly this blog and my “health” goals.  What I was neglecting was my mental health.  I needed to walk away from my blog for a while to re-gain sanity. 

I had made hefty weight loss goals at the beginning of this year and I even joined two challenges that cost me big bucks to enter.  I stopped all of those things too, weighing myself, counting calories, obsessing over whether or not my body was weighing less.  I found I was getting angry with my body and I was feeling crazy with my load as a wife and a mother.  Not a healthy place to be if you ask me!!!

For my sanities sake, I had to stop it all.  I had to re-prioritize my life.  I have visited with my doctors and I am healthy in all physical aspects, other than I am overweight.  Since my mental health was going to pot, I just had to stop it all.  For one whole month I didn’t go to the gym and I didn’t fret over the food I ate.

I maintained my weight for the most part, up until the past week or so where I have seen a gain.  Sigh…

During my time “off” I mostly just took a step back and began breathing again.  I was struggling with anxiety and it was getting worst with my weight loss efforts.  I would stress over things I did not have control over like sickness, and the moods of my children.  I would cry and feel stressed if I couldn’t get to the gym.  It was at a point of I needed to make a change, and I really didn’t want to let go of my goals I had set, but something big had to budge or I was not going to “get better” mentally.

I worried that my anxiety was beyond my control.  I was to the point I had made an appointment with my doctor to talk about options and possible medications.  But due to my doctor being out of town and a job change with insurance not starting up right away,  my appointment was a month out.  I decided before I got into see my doctor I would do every thing I could to get mentally healthy before I went to see her. 

Normally I think most of us would benefit from exercise mentally.  But it was not working for me, it was bringing more stress, especially because all of my efforts felt in vain because I was not losing any weight.  I was feeling more stress about trying to get to the gym, than was good for my soul and my body!

Along with my break from the diet world, I saw a counselor to see if I could sort some things out. My hopes were that I could gain some tools to help me deal with my anxiety so I wouldn’t have to turn to a medication route.

The other change that took place was birth control, I ran out of my prescription for the pill and I wouldn’t be able to re-fill until I had my doctor appointment.  So I went off.  I suspected that the hormones in the pill were partial factor in my anxiety (which has been a struggle for me the whole year I was on the pill).  I started feeling better and better with each day without the pill.  The hormones were messing me up!

Here are some of the things I learned from my:
“break from weight loss”

-Yes, the birth control pill makes me more moody and anxious.  Not a good way to live!

-Going to therapy was helpful and I was able to gain a better perspective and helpful tools for coping.

-Not working out, was a blessing for this time being.  I needed it! Backwards I know!

-You have to put what is most important first, even if it means you have to give up something you want really bad (I had big dreams of being down 60 lbs by June! Not gunna happen!!)

-When I eat lots of sugar I am more moody and it also brings on the anxiety.  Dang, I wish sugar wasn’t a factor cause for some crazy reason I like the stuff!

-When I am not exercising and eating healthy I have a hard time getting to sleep, and a  harder time getting up in the morning.  I missed my deep sleep and the ability to fall asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow!

-But most importantly I have once again learned how important it is to Trust in the Lord!

So here I am, ready to start making healthy choices once again. I didn’t think my break was going to be as long as it was, but I am grateful to say that I am a healthier person today, even if I still am fat! :)  I can think clearly again, and I am not emotionally volatile, like I was becoming a few months back.  I have gained back a great sense of sanity and I don’t live in an anxious hole of worry.  I am very grateful.

I hope all of you are hanging in there!  Please do not forget to take care of your mental health as well as your physical health.  They go hand in hand and if one is lacking greatly, you can not win!

 Have a beautiful week!