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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Happy Girl

God is really good...that's about all I have to say concerning the past few days. No matter how sticky life gets, out of the blue He just surprises me (and you!) with some beautiful days. Now, the past two days weren't perfect, mind you. I got mad quite a few times and snappy, there were groans uttered, things to-do put off, and time lost.

But the past two days were also really, really good! I found my new fav paor of exercise pants from Tarjay, had glorious oats after a sad, long hiatus, tasted hummus again, opened a jar of my beloved MaraNatha ab + Arrowhead Mills pb, made an awesome recipe last night, ate some raw vegan cookie dough, consumed yogurt and a chocochipbn muffin with Nutella, sweated bullets (and buckets) in step class today, and had a yummy nibble of a dish from the past. Oh, and I'm about to roll into bed by 9.

Yep, 'tis swheet. ;)

I had an apricot 2x yesterday before lunch to hold me over.


Lunch yesterday was awesome, but unfortunately I had to gulp it down because I had to rush to a docter's appointment. It involved a grill (chicken) in a whole wheat pita pocket with hummus + mustard, lettuce, tomato, and Swiss cheese. I had fruit on the side and carrot fries!! Holy yum, I love these like life itself. Tutorial coming soon!




Dinner was amazing as well - I steamed tilapia in foil with lime juice, seasonings, and EVOO (as Rachel Ray calls it). I was hit with a lightning bolt of inspiration, partly from all of Emily's mouthwatering cold salads she's been throwing together, and created a quinoa salad!

I started off the morning with a bowl of yogurt(1/2 cup?), hot blueberries, cranberry granoler, banana, strawberries and nut buttar.

- I've got to call it quits so 'nite!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Yogurt Fuel + Owl Night = Happy Morning

Heya!

Egads, have I really not updated since April? Sheesh....I apologize for falling off the blosphere. The main reason has really been that my camera won't download pictures on our desktop, and they won't show up in my posts on the laptop! So here we go again...let's try this one more time.

As you can imagine, I have a TON of pictures for you that have been slowly building up over the past few months!! So what I think I'll do is just do a few posts (in between regular ones) that cover one subject with lots of pictures. For example: I'll do one on smoothies, one on oats, another on salads, etc. How does that sound? Let me know if there's anything special you'd like to see, like work-out fuel, veggie sides, yummy healthy treats or something else!

I'll be back with a Father's Day recap at lunch, but for now here's b-fast.

Breakfast:
I also thought about titling this post "Taste the Rainbow" but "Yogurt Fuel" is more accurate! ;)
So, breakfast was, of course, yogurt. I rolled out of bed with my stomach rumbling and craving oats like you wouldn't believe. I was trembling just thinking about it. You know that famous line, "Be still my beating heart"? That was written by someone who was gazing upon a steaming bowl of that heavenly goodness. But *sniff* I'm out of rolled oats, and so far steel-cut oatmeal just aren't the same; plus, it does take about 15-20 minutes, and I didn't want to wait that long. I threw some in a pot anyway for bfast tomorrow. We'll see how they taste.

Anyhoo, my beloved Oikos Greek yogurt was frozen (!!) from being in the back of the fridge - fridge burn?? Anyone else had that happen before? My body was really thirsty and the idea of cool, creamy yogurt and luscious fruit sounded like a excellent second option. I grabbed the only other yogurt in the fridge: the last of my yogurt trio I'd picked up at Whole Foods (Yes, I found one!) in New Orleans last week.


The Greek Gods' Greek Yogurt...sounds intriguing, no? ;) This flavor was Pomegranate, but it was just like the Siggi's I had also gotten in that there was no fruit actually in the yogurt; the yogurt was fruit-flavored.


The Greek Gods' yogurt was fun opening up because it was a pale lavender-pink color (try picturing that!), and it looked like raspberry mousse.



In the mix:
  • raisin granola
  • 1/4 of a bananer
  • watermelon
  • frozen peaches + cherries that I defrosted in the microwave
  • 1/4 of my homemade whole wheat chocolate chip banana muffin
  • cinnamon

The pomegranate flavor slightly overwhelmed the rest of the fruit; I couldn't properly taste the bowl as a whole overall because the yogurt was competing with the other flavors. I wasn't that crazy about the flavor either, and I was shocked when I looked at the back of the carton: 230 calories! While I am not a calorie counter, I don't care for high-calorie items unless they are really good. As part of my meal I wasn't that happy with the amount of calories in the Greek Gods'...I guess I've been spoiled by my Oikos Greek yogurt which is only 130 calories for 1 cup of yogurt!

It wasn't too bad, though; I was appeased by the toppings which were fantastic. I will definitely being using more frozen/heated-up fruit in my breakfasts!

A little bit after bfast, I spent nearly an entire hour trying to get these pictures uploaded and into this post -which was written yesterday- and then gave up and decided to head outside for my workout. I started Gina's Summer Shape Up last week and really enjoyed it despite not knowing all of the different exercises she listed...I figured out I REALLY wasn't doing it right when she mentioned her friend had just started it and was sore all over. Ooops! I was ready for Week 2 though; so much so that I braved the early afternoon sun to do her Day 1: Speed! After slathering on copious amounts of sunscreen and slapping on a visor, I grabbed an ice-cold water bottle and a large hand towel. I had a sneaking suspicion I would need every inch of it.
I. Was. Right.


Oh my holy moly guacamole.
I was definitely not doing it right last week! It was unbelievable: I thought I was in shape but Gina totally kicked my butt yesterday. I thought I was going to throw up....and I did, just a little bit! Near the end, I sprawled on my driveway and just lay there for 5 minutes before I pep-talked myself into getting up. I usually love my workouts and I haven't "wanted" to stop in the middle too often, but I seriously contemplated not finishing and just going inside. I saw the whole thing through though, and I'm so glad I did! I'm very proud of my accomplishment. I may have moved like a caterpillar during the last 15 minutes, but I finished it!

Today is a Stretch day which I'm so psyched about - I love that Gina's alternating days of speed, strength, and stretch - also, I didn't stretch afterward yesterday (I know, I'm crazy), so everything's tight today. I'm ready for some yoga + and walking to loosen me up!

A proud, beet-red me, post SSU:
Go Chick-fil-A! ;) I was about to say something about how my braces looked but then I caught myself: I was about to Fat Talk myself! Caitlin, who has made it her mission to end Fat Talk, describes it as, "negative self-talk or 'Fat Talk'."

So here's my new statement: Wow, I look so happy and proud - I still can't believe I did it! :)

Lunch was a chocolate protein smoothie and a slice of whole wheat toast with pb.


My smoothie had:
1/2 cup of Silk soymilk
1 tsp. flaxseed and wheat germ
1 serving whey and soy protein powder
ice
1/2 frozen banana
cinnamon
1/2 tsp. xanthanx gum - which ended up making my smoothie so light and fluffy it had no substance! It was like chocolate foam in a cup... :( I think I'll stick with my homemade version of Starbucks's Chocolate Banana Vivanno smoothie, which was what I was really craving.

I balanced my smoothie (protein) with the toast (carbs) for a good work-out recovery meal...I ended up getting what I thought was a protein headache. It felt like I hadn't had enough protein/food so I grabbed another piece with half pb and half hummus.

Then, some very random nibbling occurred and I snacked on some melon + strawberries, two spoonfuls of pb, and 1/4 grilled chicken breast from Chick-fil-A. The headache (which my mom thought was from hunger) continued and worsened, so I laid down and conked in and out of consciousness for a few hours. I got back up around 5:30 and felt much better; my headache had disappeared, so I meandered in the kitchen and got started on dinner.

I made chicken and rice with mushrooms.

I also fixed myself a side salad with radicchio, romaine, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, shredded carrots, red cabbage, a few cubes of apples and 1/4 of a strawberry. The last two were leftover from my mom's Chargrilled and Fruit Salad from CHick-fil-A so I just tossed those in. To my surprise, they added a subtle sweetness and crunch to my salad - try tossing some fruit in with your veggies for a nice variation! I topped my salad off with Sabra's Roasted Red Pepper Hummus. Mmmm, I love using it as salad dressing so much I always crave it when I order salads at restaurants!

The chicken and rice, which is my mom's recipe (going in my cookbook!), was mouthwatering as always. I suggested it for dinner because I was craving it for some reason earlier before I fell asleep and could not get it out of my head!


I headed off to bed, but couldn't fall asleep. My nap was possibly to blame for this. ;) Around 10:30, my mom came and asked me how to make hot cocoa with almond milk, a little recipe I had thrown together. Since I was already awake, I decided to make it for her. Once I was in the kitchen and stirring the milk over the stove, I decided to try something I remembered from books I read when I was little. A great way to make you sleepy: a warm glass of milk. It sounded delicious, so I concocted this baby.


I call it "Cinnamon Soy Latte"! It's coffee free, but still has that "latte" feel to it. It calmed me down, slipping down my throat with a lovely ease.

I was about to sit on the living room rug and muse when my mom, who was watching a movie with my dad, suggested I work on my cookbook. Feeling the call of inspiration at the night-owl hour, I quickly agreed. I haven't stayed up on purpose or had any late-night writing bouts in ages - it was so fun! Not something I want to do every night but it was a special treat. I grabbed a pencil, my Julia Child-esque cooking notebook and spent a glorious 15-20 minutes planning out the structure of my cookbook. I've got all the sections down, so now comes the fun part: developing/polishing/tasting recipes! I have some great ideas for desserts that I can't wait to experiment with...I also need to bulk up the fruit and veggie side recipes.

Despite my late night, I awoke to my alarm playing belly dancing music at 4:45, 5:00, and 6:00 a.m. I got up at six, and feasted on the oats I'd made the day before.

OIAJ - Oats In A Jar!!!

That would be 1/4 cup of steel-cut oats, 1/2 cup soy milk, 1/4 cup water, 1 tsp. flaxseed and wheat germ, and 1/4 of a banana. Toppins': 1/6 crumbles of wh. wh. banner choc-chip muffin, 1.5 T ab left in the jar and 1 tsp. pb with a drizzle of agave necter.


Not quite the same as my beloved rolled oats but good enough! Mmm, it was hot, gooey and nut buttery...I loved the remainder of the muffin with the chocolate chips. :D I made another Cinnamon Soy Latte, but I felt perfectly content with my OIAJ, so I'm going to pop in the fridge and enjoy later.

Wow...huge post, but it's been a long time coming! In the words of Porgy, "Well, that's all (for now), folks!"

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