30 Days of Smart Snacking

This morning I hit up the gym for some strength training. I did a few moves on the Roman Chair, a piece of equipment that makes me feel silly for some reason, so I prefer to use it when the gym’s quiet Smile 

IMG_4706 (600x800)

Then, I came home and Ben called me.

From the shower.

His phone is waterproof and he called to ask me to heat up his lunch. No lie.IMG_4715 (800x600)

My ‘fee’ for making him lunch was half his avocado Winking smileIMG_4718 (800x600)

I grabbed a pack of these from the gym on my way out. This flavor is a cross between a snickerdoodle and granola. IMG_4722 (800x600)

Then, we headed to my parent’s house to get ready for my dad’s birthday party. I was in charge of decorations. Not sure how I scored that gig…IMG_4740 (800x600)

I wanted to try “moving decorations” so I decorated the Rox and my little brother Matt.IMG_4732 (800x600)

I don’t know if I’m fighting off getting sick or just dying dragging or what, but I was about to fall asleep at 3pm. I am normally grossed out by energy drinks, but this was a necessary evil today.IMG_4729 (600x800)

I was in a Frito mood. IMG_4743 (800x600)

I’m always asked if I’m only half Mexican, but my mom and dad are both Mex. So, we had Mexican food since that’s all we know how to order.

We even had horchata – not just that cheap punch that makes your throat hurt. That means it’s a real party.horchata party

We had the ‘taco guy’ cater Smile He brings a whole set up and cooks the tacos to order!taco guyput some hot sauce on my taco baby

Ben’s plate since I forgot to take a picture of mine…500 tacos is just right

Happy Birthday Dad!birthday cake time

Happy Party Clean Up Mom!why does she look surprised

Happy ‘stache Michael!serious face

Oh wait, you weren’t ready…me and the bro

Happy Cake Monica!costco cake

Since the focus of my partnership with Orville Redenbacher is “Smart Snacking” I took a little look at the man woman in the mirror and realized I need to get that part of my diet together. image

Not to beat a horse that’s passed away from natural causes or anything, but snacking is my #1 diet downfall. I like to snack, but most of it goes unaccounted for in my mind and on the blog. I’ve estimated that snacking adds up to an additional 800 or more calories a day over here in RERville.

That’s not okay because it’s often mindless eating or at the very least – not balanced snacking (read: cereal or cereal with more cereal on top).

So, I am starting a little challenge for myself –

30 Days of Smart Snacking Challenge

My Goal:

  • To stop overeating via unaccounted for snacks
  • To stop ruining my dinner with afternoon snacking
  • To stop mindless snacking
  • To stop nighttime snacking (something I’ve been better at, but let’s put it here to be all official and stuff)

The Plan: Use a chart to plan and be accountable for two ~200 calorie snacks a day (1 mid-morning, 1 mid-afternoon). Jan 16th -Feb 15thIMG_4726 (800x600)

The Reward: My jeans will fit again!!! (I went through 3 pairs before I found something I could wear to dinner last night.)

Disclaimer: Orville Redenbacher is sponsoring this Smart Snacking post. All opinions are my own. But I’ve been sponsoring them via eating my weight in popcorn for years. Even Steven.

Want to join my Smart Snacking Challenge? Leave a comment and we’ll check in on our progress once a week.


  1. says

    Yesss love this challenge and it’s exactly the approach I’m trying to choose towards snacking! Another one I am trying to follow is to make sure all my snacks have a source of protein!

  2. says

    Oh those tacos look so delicious! I recently started using myfitnesspal to track my eats and my snacks. It really has helped me stay accountable!

  3. says

    Do you plan out your meals/snacks for the week when you are doing set up Sunday? I need to really curb the late eating. I eat horribly at night. I wish I could just go to bed.

  4. Lorin says

    I really want to. My worst thing is nighttime snacking. However, you seem like you have a lot of goals which is great but don’t a lot of people to say to take small, baby steps instead of trying to reverse every bad habit you have? Just curious because I really need to stop nightime snacking and need to workout a bit more. The hard thing is my conficting desire for a cookie and my desire to be a little bit healthier..

    • says

      I do firmly believe in baby steps to improve your health. My nighttime snacking habit is something I’ve been working on for a while and it’s getting better :) Right now my focus is on the mindless snacking.

      It sounds like you can work on both of your habits in baby steps. Maybe aim to workout 3 days a week and try to choose 1 nighttime snack before closing the kitchen?

  5. Summer T says

    Brilliant! I read an article that followed a woman throughout the day, She was shocked to see how fast those “sneaky” calories added up. She had 750 on top of her meals, she did the same thing you are doing and dropped five pounds in a month, by only logging snacks, not cutting them out. I started WW online two weeks ago and I love how I am accountable for everything I eat, nothing is off limits, but everything counts. Let’s do it!!!!!

  6. says

    I’m in! I think that you and I have VERY similar snacking issues, and I wouldn’t doubt that my mindless eating adds up to the 800ish calories in my day as well. I am all about the 30 days of MINDFUL snacking!

  7. says

    I’m definitely with you!! I need my jeans to fit better as well. I snack mindlessly way too much and have no idea how much it actually is… here’s to being accountable!

    • says

      I think it depends on timing. If you workout at an odd time you need to refuel within 30 minutes or so, it could count as a snack. But, if you workout super early in the morning and have something to refuel before eating breakfast at work (or something similar) I wouldn’t count it.

  8. j says

    I’ve found that having something to do with my hands at night, after the kitchen is closed (literally, clean up and turn off the lights) helps. Reading a book or magazine, folding laundry or using my desktop computer( no food allowed near the keyboard) are things that occupy me and take my mind off the snackies.

  9. says

    I’m with you on this one! I was doing really well last week when I was super busy for work, but this week has already started off on a bad foot. No worries, a new day, and I’m following the 30 days with you!

  10. says

    First let me say that I LOVE somersaults! Secondly, I am a snackacholic! I eat really well during the day with my 3 main meals but in between I overeat on healthy snacks. A handful of cereal with end up being 5 trips to the pantry to refill. And a couple of small treats will turn into multiple servings by the time the day ends. I would love to jump on your band wagon and start snacking better :)

  11. says

    I think all of those little goals will definitely help get your snacking back on track! That is my biggest downfall as well. It’s like “come home from work, eat many handfuls of chips.” Whoops.

  12. Hanne says

    Ugh. I’m so bad when it comes to snacking. I’m one of the very few people who actually consistently loses weight on vacation, even though I eat much larger dinners (with appetizers and desserts) than usual – for the sole reason that I don’t have access to my cupboards.

    I snack/eat/nibble at everything and anything when I’m coming home from work, starving, waiting for my husband to come home so that we can eat dinner together. Then I repeat at night if/when I’m bored, trawling the cupboards for something to munch for lack of anything better to do.

    Sometimes I think I’m crazy – I know that I sabotage myself, but I still keep doing it – so it’s kind of nice to hear that I’m not the only one, even though that makes me feel kind of mean, since I know it can’t be fun for you either.

  13. says

    Super in on this-I just posted about snacking FAILS. I’m great until 8pm, then all hell breaks loose. 800 calories a day = 1 pound in 4 days. RIDIC! Sending you all the willpower in the world-with a bit resevred for me, of course :-)

  14. says

    Such a great idea, snacking is a huge problem for me too. Mostly if I dont plan a healthy mid- morning and afternoon snack then I get too hungry and totally pig out for lunch and dinner. I cant let msyelf get to that truley hungry place or it’s all over….

  15. Patty says

    I am in on this! As many others have said I come home and just start snacking. I’m not even necessarily hungry it has just become a habit that I eat when I come home. I need to make a new habit like go for a run.
    Also, those tacos look AMAZING!

  16. says

    I’m loving this challenge. I just did another challenge that wants you to do some sort of “exercise” everyday, whether it’s just a leisurely walk or whatever, and I’ve stuck to it. This is what I need. I feel I get hungry a few hours after dinner and keep reaching for small, healthy snacks, but don’t want to make it a habit. I think I need to increase my protein at my meals to keep me satisfied enough to decrease snacking. So complicated!

  17. says

    Cereal is seriously the worst! I know like 6x a day I will grab a handful out of the box and think nothing of it. I’m going to try keeping track of mine too! Thanks for the inspiration! :)

  18. says

    My biggest problem is big fattening dinners… snacking I have less issues with. Not that I don’t snack, but I’m pretty satisfied with munching on fruit and yogurt for snacks. Of course these have calories too but at least they are nutritionally sound?? I need to get my pants fitting again though. So maybe I’ll join you on your journey.

  19. Vesna says

    OMG…you read my mind. So my snacking is usually in the evening…after dinner where I have no reason to be snacking other than boredom or at work (work at an office job) and am procastinating doing work.

    I’m getting married in May and my dresss was ordered a half size smaller (not by my choice). I need ALL the help I can get :)

  20. says

    Suprisingly .. snacking is not one of my big issues. Once in awhile I will have a day where I want to eat everything and nothing satisfies me but for the most part I’m not a big snacker at all. I’d like to attribute that to being a very busy person but you seem hella busy to, so maybe that’s not it lol!

  21. Lindsay says

    Girl, i’m fighting the jean war over here too….it’s no fun. I’ve got to cool it with the snacking too….what can I say, cereal is my vice. And who wants to portion their magical milk covered snackies?! Not me! Grr!

  22. Amanda says

    Snacking has definitely been stalling my weight loss efforts…one treat here and another treat there really adds up!

  23. paula says

    iam in! cant start today since i already blew it but tomorrow for sure! u said 2 200 cal snacks per day right! mine will be after work(3:30ish and dessert (8pmish) thanks for the challenge and i look forward to your posts/tweets about this!

  24. says

    Can I have the taco man’s number? He seems like a hit at parties!

    I’m such a snacker too. I could make meals throughout the day with just snacking. It’s bad.

  25. says

    snacking for me is the worst, especially because i sit at a desk for 10 hrs a day…I have been filling my lunch back with healthy snacks of raw fruite and veggies…and I have fallen in love with the 100 cal quac packs from wholly quacamole…LOVE THEM!!! good luck with your smart snacking challenge:)

  26. says

    Monica, I am definitely in for the challenge! I think we can all help each other by sharing ideas for a variety of healthy snacks so we don’t get bored. I know that is part of my problem. I really like clementines, “Cuties”, as snacks. They are sweet, full of fiber, and highj in water content. Plus, they are part of the fruit group, which means they are good for you, right? I like popcorn, as well. We have a popcorn popping machine that uses hot air to pop the corn. I just buy old school kernels in a bag, and spray the popcorn with “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” spray, and then sprinkle whatever my heart decires on it: popcorn powders like Kernel Season’s popcorn seasonings in White Cheddar and Nacho Cheese, or just a tad bit (or a little more than a tad….) of salt. Seasoned salt is also good. I also like to toast two Kashi Whole Wheat waffles and put almond butter on one side, and sugar free jelly of any flavor (blueberry is awesome!) on the other and put they together like a sandwich and eat it. SO good!

  27. Vesna says

    I’ve been so busy today..I forgot to snack (Yes!!!) Now that i’m reminded; it’s going to be a juicy navel orange and a mini babybel light!

  28. says

    I’m in. I’m late to the game, but I’m in. Especially after blowing through half a thing of TJ’s peanut butter cups this afternoon, ugh.

    Also, waterproof phone, WHAT?! I need one.

  29. Kris says

    I am definitely in!! This is my biggest problem! Somehow a small taste of almond butter quickly ends up being 3 tablespoons…agh!!

  30. Katie P says

    HI Monica! I love this idea. I am really trying to get more protein and veggies in my snacks instead of just reaching for a granola bar. I am hope to fit back into my jeans and skirts again (darn holidays indulgences…but boy are are tasty!)

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