Tag Archives: exercise

Meal planning for Jan 20-26

20 Jan

Happy Sunday! I’m in the midst of a four-day weekend, thanks to being sick on Friday and MLK Day tomorrow. I’ve been keeping myself very busy, though.

Today started at 7 a.m. so I could drive to the west side. By 8, I was running five miles beside the Pacific Ocean. I asked some running friends on Twitter what to do to prevent/treat knee and ankle pain, and in addition to stretching, strengthening my legs, wearing a brace, and buying new shoes, someone recommended running on a softer surface, such as the beach. It sounded like a fun challenge for today’s long run, especially since I needed to be in Culver City at 9:30 this morning anyway. It was tough — I walked more than I wanted — but it did feel bette on my joints. Plus, you can’t beat the ocean view. No pictures since I was just soaking it all in. Afterward I went — kinda sweaty and gross, sorry folks — to a cooking demo at Native Foods, which I’ll share more about next week.

I am trying to treat today like a normal Sunday, so I did my meal planning and grocery shopping. Here is today’s CSA box:
20130120-160520.jpg

Before you is:
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-red chard
-curly kale
-red leaf lettuce
-chiogga beets
-parsley
-cilantro
-little purple turnips
-purple kohlrabi
-cute skinny carrots
-bacon avocados
-oranges

Here’s what’s on the menu

Breakfast: Polenta and egg (me), green smoothies (him)

Lunches:

Sunday — Chips, dips and carrots
Monday — probably a quick pasta
Tuesday-Thursday — Roasted beet-turnip-kohlrabi salad
Friday-Saturday — Taco salad
For him — Yet another hummus recipe with carrots, celery, and corn chips

Dinners:

Sunday — Salad
Monday-Tuesday — Bean burritos with cashew cheese sauce
Wednesday-Thursday — Lentil soup
Friday-Saturday — Avocado and portobello sandwiches

This week, Mr. X wants to start learning to cook, so we’re starting with a basic lentil soup. He has incredibly limited experience in the kitchen, which is part of why I decided that soup was a good starting point. It really only involved chopping, simmering, and tasting for the right flavor balance.

As for my workouts this week, the schedule is pretty much the same as last week:

20130120-160454.jpg

Sunday (today) – 5-mile run
Monday – rest
Tuesday – 3-mile run plus strides and a yoga podcast
Wednesday – class at Pop Physique (last one!)
Thursday – 4-mile run
Friday – bike ride, yoga podcast and legs/butt
Saturday – 3-mile run plus strides and arms/abs
Sunday – 5-mile run

I burned about 1,800 calories this past week! Pretty exciting stuff.

Now I’m going to relax while watching the Patriots/Ravens game before I attempt to do anything else. I. Am. Exhausted!

Come check out In Her Chucks’ “What’s in the Box?” link-up!

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Running update

17 Jan

Yesterday’s review inspired me to write a post about my running adventures.

I told you about our little family goal to workout six times a week for two months. So far, it’s been going great! Mr. X has not missed a beat. I admittedly skipped one run the day I found out about my family tragedy, but we’ve decided to excuse me due the gravity of the situation (and, frankly, how hard I’ve been taking the loss). Otherwise, I have finished all my scheduled runs, and I’m slowly increasing my speed and stamina. Here’s what I’ve been up to the last week (plus a preview of Saturday’s short run):

TrainingHow do I feel? I feel amazing. Seriously. After the first few days, the soreness has lessened considerably. I had been struggling to complete all my miles without walking breaks — even the short distances — but then something changed this weekend. Suddenly my runs were an opportunity to release the emotions I’ve been feeling. Even though I walked a third of a couple of two- and three-milers, on Sunday I somehow managed to run five entire miles. I stopped for red lights, but otherwise, I ran five miles. I know there are a lot of great athletes out there, and plenty of people who routinely run that distance, but I don’t. I have never felt stronger, or more like I can do anything.

However, I have noticed a little knee pain this week. I know how important strength training is no matter what you’re doing, but I have been totally half-assing any work. That has to stop! I need to do more leg work in addition to core and arms. The last thing I want to do is injure my knee (or any other part of me, for that matter) when I’m feeling so into the training. I found this article about strength exercises for runners, and I will keep looking for more ideas. If you have any to share, please do!

I will never be a marathoner (’cause I don’t wanna), but I’m excited to do my first 10k this year, and actually feel prepared for it!

How are your 2013 goals coming? I’d love to hear about them!

Whose rag? Hoo Rag!

16 Jan

Disclosure: Per FTC guidelines, I want to clarify that I received the following product for free but am not otherwise being compensated for this review. If I didn’t like the product, I would tell you so! The review that follows is totally my opinion.

Back in December, a representative from Hoo Rag emailed me to see if I wanted to test out their product and possibly write a review on it for my blog. I have a really small head (but seriously) and fine, wispy hair, so I was curious to see if the Hoo Rag would be capable of keeping everything in place while I exercise. This was the first time I’ve ever said yes to a review request.

I wanted to give the product a full test run before I gave you my opinion, so together we’ve been on eight runs, canoodled during yoga twice, and sweated through four Pop Physique classes. I have also run it through the washer and dryer twice. Here it is on my tiny pea head the first time I used it, while I look awkward and sleepy at 6:45 a.m.:

Hoo Rag 1They sent me the Hoo Rag in Winter Willow, which wouldn’t have been my first choice from the site — I probably would have gone with something sillier like the Hootensil or the Groovy Hoo — but I actually love that it’s neutral and goes with everything.

Basically the Hoo Rag is a stretchy tube of fabric that you can use in a bunch of different ways, kind of like the infinity dress of head/sweat bands. There’s a whole video on the different  ways you can wear it, though I stick with the basic headband:

Hoo Rag 2It took two wearings for me to figure out my preferred way of putting it on. As I mentioned, I have a tiny head that would better suit a 7-year-old than a grown woman, and stretchy headbands never ever ever fit me. After about five minutes, they slide right off the back of my head. My first run wearing the Hoo Rag involved some tugging and shifting, but I discovered that wearing it a little thicker (as in, not bunched up too skinny) and covering my hairline eliminated the problem. I also found that wearing it over my ears keeps it in place better, and it also secures my ear buds, which tend to fall out of my toddler-sized ear holes.

After our 14 workout sessions together, I am happy to report that I really love my Hoo Rag! It has replaced the big plastic headband I used to rock (which eventually gives me a headache and doesn’t wick sweat at all) and also eliminates the need for any bobby pins. It has held together through both washings and dryings without a pill or pulled thread. And it has yet to smell bad, even though my tiny head gets plenty sweaty during my runs.

My only complaints are that I wish the product came with care instructions as well as an info sheet on how to wear it. You can find the latter on their website, but it would be nice to have it on paper. Otherwise, I’m a fan and will continue to use the product!

Meal Planning for Jan 14-20

14 Jan

I want to apologize if my posting has been or becomes sporadic. I’m currently dealing with a family tragedy and may have to travel out of state this week to attend a funeral. Details are still being worked out, so I appreciate your patience and understanding.

I totally forgot to place an order for my CSA box this weekend, so my planning is a bit different than usual. I still wanted to share my planning for this week, though!

Breakfast: Polenta and egg (me), green smoothies (him)

Lunches:

  • Monday-WednesdayButternut Poblano Soup (I’ll post my tweaks this week)
  • Thursday-Sunday — No idea yet! Probably leftovers, or pasta.
  • For him — Another hummus recipe with carrots, celery, and corn chips

Dinners:

I stuck somewhat to my plan this week, with a few changes. We didn’t eat out at all, though. I surprised myself and consider it a little victory. There was one night — when I got the bad news — that I didn’t feel like cooking, so we bought canned veggie chili, a block of cheese, and corn chips to make Frito pie at home. It wasn’t the healthiest, but it was comforting, and it meant Mr. X could easily prepare dinner for both of us.

And now let’s look at my workout schedule:

Monday – rest
Tuesday – 3-mile run plus strides
Wednesday – class at Pop Physique
Thursday – 4-mile run
Friday – yoga podcast and arms/abs
Saturday – 2-mile run plus strides and legs/butt
Sunday – 5-mile run

It’s virtually identical to last week’s plan, but I’m actually looking forward to it.

That’s all I have for now. Sorry about the lack of photos, but I promise to bring you a food post tomorrow.

CSA and Meal Planning for Jan 7-13

7 Jan

I’m finally returning to both my CSA and meal planning! I am unreasonably excited about both, so I think that officially makes me a goober. Oh well. There are worse things to be. So let’s get right to it!

Here are the glorious contents of my first CSA box of 2013:

VeggiesBefore you are:

Laid out

  • Baby spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Flat leaf parsley
  • Curly parsley
  • Lettuce
  • Kohlrabi
  • Radishes
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Oranges
  • Cilantro

Let’s take a closer look at that gorgeous head of lettuce:

Lettuce blossomIt’s so beautiful and, I predict, will make an excellent salad. Here’s what I’m gonna do with it all:

Breakfast: Green smoothies

Lunches:

  • Monday-Wednesday — A black-eyed pea and corn dish
  • Thursday/Friday — Probably hummus with carrots and homemade tortilla chips
  • Saturday — Leftovers mini quiches and home fries
  • Sunday — Leftovers
  • For him — Soyrizo tacos, the aforementioned hummus

Dinners:

  • Monday — Beet salad (similar to this one)
  • Tuesday — Vegetarian spaghetti carbonara and Swiss chard
  • Wednesday/Thursday — Barbecued mushrooms and roasted garlic mashed potatoes/kohlrabi
  • Friday Asian noodle salad (similar to this one, but simplified)
  • Saturday Probably something out

As for my weekly exercise, I’m working from my 10k training plan:

January training planBut supplementing a little to ensure I get in my six days (and also to supplement with strength training and yoga). Here is this week:

Monday – rest
Tuesday – 3-mile run plus strides
Wednesday – class at Pop Physique (I have three classes remaining on my gift card)
Thursday – 4-mile run
Friday – yoga podcast and arms/abs
Saturday – 2-mile run and legs/butt
Sunday – 5-mile run

My first week of our 60-Day Challenge went really well. You can see my four running days highlighted with green check marks in my training plan, and in addition, I did yoga on Friday and some arm work on Saturday.

Happy Monday, everyone!

Come check out all the great produce at In Her Chucks’ weekly “What’s in the Box?” link-up!

Health goals for 2013

3 Jan

2012 most definitely had its ups and downs, and frankly I have zero interest in a reflection on my life over the year or my favorite recipes or anything of the sort. Lots of other bloggers do it, and that’s great, but it’s not very me.

I do, however, love planning. I’m a little hyper-addicted to it, in fact. It’s due in part to being a bit (ha!) high-strung, but it’s largely, too, because without a schedule or list of goals, I lose motivation easily. Crossing things off a list or having something specific to work toward really inspire me. I also love deadlines. I’m sick, but it’s not contagious.

So while I’m happy to say that 2012 wasn’t too shabby in terms of my eating and exercise, I still want to do better this year. With that in mind, here are the food and fitness goals I’ve outlined so far:

  1. Complete B & X’s 60-Day Challenge. The B is me, and the X is my husband, just so you know. He decided to complete the Insanity workout, which is eight weeks. To encourage him — and myself — I pledged to do a complementary program of my own design. Basically I’m recommitting to the 10k training plan I abandoned in the fall, plus adding two more workouts (yoga, strength training, bike riding, etc.) in each week. In sum, we will be active for six days a week. At the four- and eight-week marks, we’re going to get a little reward, to be determined. By doing the challenge together, we keep each other honest and motivated. But by engaging in separate activities, we can do the workouts we prefer and not embarrass ourselves in front of each other. Ha.
  2. Run my first 10k. I’m currently searching for one in late April/early May to coincide with the completion of my training (yep, it will continue after the 60-Day Challenge — it’s 15 weeks!). I will actually hit a 10k distance in mid-February, however, so I’m consider doing it earlier in the training and then another one after it’s over. I’m just talking to myself over here. Sorry.
  3. Cook almost every meal at home.  You’ll notice I didn’t set an exact number each week, because it can be hard to predict work week plans. And frankly, sometimes takeout or a heat-and-eat pizza from Ralph’s are important for my mental health, too, on particularly stressful days. However, “almost every” pretty much means every lunch (with exceptions for work commitments), dinner every week night, and a brunch and dinner on the weekend. But again, I left myself some flexibility.

Those are my specific goals. I have some general thoughts about trying new cooking methods, eating more fruit and greens, and things like that, but nothing is fleshed out. I’m considering doing some kind of weekly recipe challenge in February, though, so be on the lookout for more details. And, of course, I have a bunch of other goals, but they are unrelated to the topic of this blog, so I didn’t think you’d be interested.

And just so this entry isn’t totally colorless, here is my cute little breakfast:

Breakfast

I made half a batch of Baked Banana Bread Oatmeal (no nuts or chocolate) in two of my new ramekins. They are so convenient! Yesterday I ate them hot from the oven, and today it was so easy to pop the little container in the microwave. I’ll make another half batch tomorrow morning.

And here’s lunch:

Lunch

The dips look way less appetizing than they are. Ha! The brown mess is a variation/simplification of Susan’s Black-Eyed Pea Hummus recipe. Here are my variations:

  • Used 1 cup of black-eyed peas and 1 cup of black beans (all freshly cooked at home)
  • Omitted the onions and pecans
  • Subbed white vinegar for lemon juice because I forgot to buy lemons

The green sauce is my Creamy Vegan Dill Dressing, though again I had to sub in vinegar for the juice, and I used hot sauce instead of jalapeno. I apparently paid no attention at all at the store. The dressing was left over from last night’s salad:

Almost identical to the original one, it featured baby spinach, black beans, roasted corn, avocado, the dressing, and tortilla strips. I made the strips from stale corn tortillas lurking in the fridge, and then I turned the rest into the chips you see above for my lunch.

And now I have three questions for you:

1. What kind of health-related goals have you set this year?

2. Do you give a hoot about other kinds of goals I’m setting, or should I still to diet and exercise? (I promise your answer won’t hurt my feelings.)

3. Would including nutritional information about my recipes help you?

CSA Week 9 and Meal Planning

5 Nov

Hey everyone! I took a weekend off from the internet (other than the time sucks that are Facebook and Twitter, of course), so I’m presenting my CSA haul and weekly meal plan a little late once again. My apologies! However, we’re pretty excited about this week’s food.

First, though, is the weekly CSA share:

Before you are:

  • Big bunch of arugula
  • Swiss chard
  • Green onions
  • Celery
  • Parsley
  • Butternut squash
  • Two honeycrisp apples (we ate one last night — incredible!)
  • Meyer lemon
  • Three beets
  • Two heads of broccoli

As of right now, we also have another butternut, some Japanese eggplant, and a bunch of Swiss chard left over from the week before. So what’s the food plan for the week?

Breakfast: polenta with roasted summer squash and eggplant and Swahili Ginger and Milk Tea

Lunches:

Dinners:

  • Monday/TuesdayVegan Cornbread Casserole and sauteed Swiss chard
  • Wednesday/Thursday — Portobello mushrooms burgers and salad
  • Friday — Butternut Squash Pasta
  • Saturday — Something special to be determined for my husband’s birthday!

As far as working out goes, I’m trying to ease back into the 10k training plan this week. I definitely fell out of sync between preparing to leave town and then being gone for a week. I’m excited to get back to it, though, especially since daylight savings means the sun will be out when I depart in the mornings. (The ONLY good thing about falling back on the west coast. It gets dark so early here!) I’m also thinking about signing up for a 5k “turkey trot” on Thanksgiving. I’m still trying to decide if it’s worth the $30 or if I should just go for a run that morning on my own.

So that’s it for this week’s planning. I’ll be back later today with a recipe from this weekend!

Every week, I link up with In Her Chucks’ “What’s in the Box?” series. Click here to check out this week’s collection of CSA hauls!