Coming up for air.

Do you ever feel like you’re so busy with work or school that when you’re able to actually enjoy the company of friends or sit and write a blog post, you feel like you’re coming up for air? Like when you were a kid and your swim coach told you to try coming up for air less often so that you could swim faster and you struggled and waited in anticipation until you reached the desired amount of strokes to take a breath? That’s how life is feeling right now. But oddly, I think I’m handling it alright. In the process of adjusting. Not terribly stressed, just feeling like I don’t have a lot of free time.

OK, enough blahness-talking. Let’s get into the cool things that happened this weekend:

I went to the farmers’ market!

My beans came with a “receipt” from the owner of the stand’s daughter.

This, my friends, is Lemon Basil. I never knew that it was a thing until I found it at the market! Apparently it keeps best if you cut off the ends, and stick it in water to keep it fresher. Who knew?

FOOTBALL season is here!

Today commenced the start of an exciting season (in my opinion). I went over to a friend’s for a game and gloated over my Eagles’ victory earlier in the day. I love football season for the social gatherings – nothing brings people together quite like football.

And now since bed time is quickly approaching, I will just leave you with…

This Week In Workouts (TWIW) 9.4.11-9.10.11
Su – Circuit Strength Training
M – 20 minute HIIT on step mill
Tu – Circuit Strength Training
W – 20 minute HIIT on step mill
Th – Circuit Strength Training
F – 45 minute Cycle
Sa – 45 minute Boot Camp

I missed my yoga workout this week ūüė¶ I’ll just have to make extra-special-sure that I don’t miss it this week. And once again, have no fear, this week was sandwiched by rest days.


Healthy(er) Cookout Fare

I suppose Memorial Day weekend marks the start of cookouts. Can you smell the grills firing up? Can you taste the delicious cookout grub? Me too.

So, being me, I feel that I must bring healthy dishes to cookouts just to even out the burgers/hot dogs/chips/all-the-delicious-but-not-so-healthy-foods-of-cookouts. For my friend’s cookout this weekend, I set out to make a healthier coleslaw and a healthier fruit crisp without compromising taste. I think that I succeeded. Here goes…
For the coleslaw, I pretty much followed a recipe from my Whole Foods recipe app on my iPhone. However, I made some substitutions (yogurt for the buttermilk, stevia for the sugar) and some¬†omissions¬†(didn’t have any green onion or chives):
Coleslaw with Apple Cider Yogurt Vinaigrette
– 3 cups savoy cabbage, shredded
– 1 1/2 cups red cabbage, shredded

Р1 carrot, shredded (or peeled w/vegetable peeler)                           
– 1/4 cup yogurt
– 1 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 2 1/2 tbsp organic apple cider
– 1 tsp ground mustard
– 1 tsp stevia for baking (or 1 packet stevia, or any other sweetener)
– 1/4 tsp ground sea salt
– 1/2 tsp ground pepper
1. Combine all vegetables in a large bowl.
2. Combine yogurt through pepper in a smaller mixing bowl. Stir well until uniformly mixed.
3. Pour yogurt mixture over the vegetables and toss to coat evenly. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Vegetable Mixture
fastest cookout side dish you will ever make.
Nutrition Facts (assuming 8 servings)
For the fruit crisp, I looked at several different recipes but ended up creating my own using various elements of several:
Strawberry Apple Rhubarb Crisp
-3 apples, chopped
– 1/2 cup frozen rhubarb slices, chopped
– 3/4 cup frozen strawberries, chopped
– 1/4 cup frozen apple juice concentrate
– 1/8 cup flaxseed meal
– juice and zest of 1 lemon
Р1/2 tbsp cinnamon                                
– 2 tbsp butter, melted
– 2 tbsp raw honey
– 1 cup 5 grain hot cereal (or rolled oats)
– 1/4 cup Teff Flour
1. Combine fruit, apple juice concentrate, flaxseed meal, lemon juice/zest, and cinnamon in a medium-sized saucepan. Mix well. Simmer on medium-low for about 20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, combine melted butter, honey, 5 grain hot cereal, and teff in a small-medium mixing bowl. Mix until it has a uniform look.
3. Preheat oven to 350ňöF. Pour fruit mixture into a 11″x7″ baking dish. Sprinkle dry mixture evenly on top. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until bubbling and golden.
fruit-mixture ingredients
all mixed up
after cooking
topping mixture
ready to go in the oven.
20-30 minutes
Nutrition Facts (assuming 10 servings)
Alright, folks, time to head out the door! I’ll be sure to fill you in on how everything went over with the group later. ūüôā

Super(food) Bowl

As you who have read some of my past posts know, I work a job where I have 12-hour shifts. I work two days, then I’m off two days, then I work three days, then I’m off two, then I work two, then I’m off three. If you followed that, it means that I work every other weekend (for three days). And this was my weekend… hence the lack of posting. BUT! All weekend long I had something to look forward to! The Super Bowl!

¬†¬† ¬† I was looking forward to it because (other than liking football) my friend hosted a superbowl party! Complete with delicious homemade pizza and goods that other folks brought. I wish that I had snapped a photo to show off the awesomeness of it all. Midway through the soiree, one of my friends and I realized that there was no dessert! (gasp) So we ended up running to the grocery store and buying ice cream, cones, cookies, and cupcakes (of the delicious Ukrops variety). Needless to say, I really¬†filled up on food, beer, and desserts. I’m willing to say it was all worth it. I love a little splurge every once and a while! And today I’m back on track, starting with a healthy bowl of steel cut oats with pumpkin, blueberries, and almond butter. After, I’m hitting the gym for a kickboxing class!
   My question to you is: do your habits change after a great feast or do you just go about your buisness as normal?

Late Night Pizza mmmm

I have a confession to make. I love late-night, cheap pizza. It’s not gourmet. It’s not whole grain. It involves no preparation. It pairs nicely with an ice-cold beer. And that is exactly what my evening comprised of.
I spent the day and evening hanging out with friends, and by the time we thought about dinner it was 10 PM! So, naturally, we had to order pizza. In Richmond, there are two main choices in local, cheap, late-night pizza: Chanello’s and Assante’s. We chose Assante’s, and boy am I glad that we did! We ordered a vegetarian pizza, and I must say that the crust was better than a lot of mainstream pizza crusts out there. The toppings weren’t as varied as I prefer with veggie pizzas, but it was¬†definitely¬†more than worth the 11.99 (before tax) per large pizza.

The evidence.