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Keeping it Sweet

Aahhhhh, it was so hard to leave this face this morning!!!!!

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I got up even earlier this morning (5am) to take him outside before going to spin class. He was so upset when I left, it tugged on my heart! Archie’s been following me everywhere, kinda like a poodle-shaped shadow ;)  But my mom says it’ll get better once he realizes that I actually come back.

Spin class today was probably my worst. I don’t know what happened! It definitely felt tough, but halfway through I started feeling sick. Thirsty, but the thought of drinking made me want to throw up. I felt okay on the bike, but knew I’d be in trouble once I got off. Sure enough, during the stretching, I got a ringing in my ears and started seeing black dots everywhere. I quickly wiped off my bike praying I wouldn’t topple over before getting out of there. I immediately went into the air-conditioned hallway and sat by a window until I felt like I could stand again, then took a cold shower.

So frightening! I didn’t do anything different from my usual routine, except perhaps ate my pre-workout snack (bread + PB + jam) 15 minutes earlier than I normally do. My gut tells me I was dehydrated/undernourished. Perhaps lacking in electrolytes, as I lose them quickly compared to most people. Just when I think I’ve got it down to a tee, my body throws me a curveball! Going to try weightlifting tomorrow with extra food/water. If it happens again, I will leave and take a few more days off.

Breakfast was nourishing to say the least.

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Clementines, boiled eggs, Taste of Nature Persian Pomegranate Garden bar.

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Nutritionals for the bar found here. It was better than I was expecting!! The first two ingredients are sesame seeds and fig pieces so it had a wonderful gooey, crispy texture. Thumbs up!

Morning/afternoon snacks were homemade dark chocolate s’mores protein bars.

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Oooohhhhh yeeeaaahhh. Recipe at the end of the post!

Lunch!

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Sundried tomato tuna, hummus, feta, black olives. And the usual plethora of baby carrots.

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Carrots are high in sugar, I think that’s why I like ‘em so much ;)

After eating, I proceeded to drive to the grocery store, shop, drive home, put the groceries away, take the dog out and drive back to work all in a 60 minute lunch break! This is me tooting my own horn. Toot.

Getting groceries at lunch meant I could rush home after work and get started on this feast right away.

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Two chicken thighs off a rotisserie chicken. Heated up in the oven.

The real star of the show was the veggies!

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I sprinkled sweet potato, broccoli and cauliflower with garam masala before roasting them. I used the Clubhouse kind which includes a mix of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, coriander, red pepper, onion, carrot, garlic, etc. SO good. It was such an amazing flavour, loved every delicious bite.

The chicken was good too – I love dark meat!

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The skin was given to the pooch :)

Archie by the way has a really funny way of eating. He grabs one piece of food, brings it into the living room, then starts playing with it like a cat.

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He throws it around, gets down and starts wagging his bum like he’s going to attack. One piece at a time… :P

Meanwhile, I’ve been enjoying decadent protein desserts.

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I’ve been adding a tablespoon of cocoa powder and a stevia packet to my usual protein pudding (1 1/2 scoops chocolate protein powder mixed with water to thicken). I kid you not, it tastes just like brownie batter. I feel like I’m licking the brownie bowl eating this!! It’s almost too rich. Almost ;)

Ooooh, speaking of rich and decadent, my new protein bars!

 

Homemade Dark Chocolate S’more Protein Bars

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 4 scoops chocolate protein powder (I use whey)
  • 4 tbsp almond butter
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 packet stevia
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp marshmallow fluff
  • 1/2 tbsp mini chocolate chips

Mix everything but the fluff together, adding water until powder is just dissolved and sticky. (the more you mix, the more it dissolves, so add sparingly). Lightly stir in fluff. Flatten into a square pan and let harden in fridge.

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Makes 8 rich, knock-your-sweet-tooth-out bars.

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And with that, it’s someone’s bedtime!

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I apologize if I’m MIA from blogland this week, I’m spending all spare minutes cramming my brain with personal training info before my test on Friday. Wait a tick, I don’t apologize. It’s important that I pass!! (and can pass all my knowledge on to you guys ;) )

 

Question of the Day: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you grade your sweet tooth? (10 being the sweetest) Umm, if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, it should come as no surprise that mine comes in at a solid 9.2. Chocolate of course is my favourite, generic candy a close second.

Old Soul

Can I just start off this post by saying I have the awesome-est readers ever? Yup. Even those of you that don’t comment, but keep coming back every day. You’re all awesome. I continuously spill my guts on a regular basis, and I continuously get great feedback. On top of that I get feedback that makes me think and challenges my established set of opinions and attitudes. Totally awesome :D

Guess what!? I woke up with the sun again today! Evening shifts will do that to ya. Except now that my body is used to being up later, I’ve got to go back to the middle of the night early morning shifts this weekend.

My oats were happy basking in the sunlight this morning.

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  • 1/2cup oat bran
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • cinnamon
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 2 chopped dates
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • unsweetened shredded coconut

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Yummmm. A big ole’ bowl of oat bran is one of my favourite comforts :)

I was all excited for Body Pump class this morning. I’m trying to get more weight training days in my week, and I think including a weight class at the gym is a good way to switch up my usual routine (and keep those muscles guessing!). Anyways, I arrived at the gym to find they were halfway through the class! May-jah confusion on my part. Until I realized the 10:15 class I was looking for was at the other gym across town. Boo. So I wandered out to the machines and weight area and just sort of made it up as I went along:

T’was a good time! I wish I could go on the rowing machine again, but the last time I used it, my hips hurt for days. Now I’m kinda iffy about getting back on, and I loved it so!

After my gym sesh, Chris and I went out for lunch again. We both agreed anything downtown was out because eating down there at lunch time is a pain. Somehow we ended up across the river at my second favourite 50’s diner

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(Steve’s 50’s Diner in my hometown will always be number one). You may recall I ate here on the day of my triathlon, when I had a very well-deserved slice of recovery pie for dinner. However today I looked past the dessert menu and ordered an actual meal.

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The roast chicken special. C’mon, say roast chicken and you know I’m there. I may also be an old lady. It happens.

Chris was all over it too.

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These were HUGE pieces of chicken breast! Holy moly. I ate most of mine because it was delicious, but didn’t make much of a dent in the sides as a result. Digesting 1/4 of a chicken is hard work, but it was worth it :)

Plus, it’s real food!

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I’ll be back for that chocolate pie on the top right. Perhaps after my half marathon next time ;)101_0209

As a result of my giant lunch, I wasn’t very hungry for dinner. I tried to put together something small, but I was still stuffed to the brim with carrot sticks when I was finished (isn’t that always the story?).

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The pita is just a can of smoked herring mixed with a little laughing cow cheese and capers. Simple, and absolutely delicious. I love smoked fish. See? Old.

 

Today also wrapped up one full week of calorie counting. I promised I would share my thoughts on doing it again. At first, I was really into it. I was again fascinated by my stats and numbers. I get a real kick by seeing how much sodium I had, or how much sugar I consumed on fruit alone. The graphs are fun to peruse through, and it makes me feel very much in control.

Three days into it, i was so over it. Firstly, logging every bit of food I eat into a website takes a long ass time. Livestrong is a great site, but it takes a while to load. I had to do a lot of calculating to figure out I ate .424 of a serving, and weighed even my dates.

The worst part, for me, was the calorie “limit.” I felt like I had to reach it every day, even if it meant eating slightly less, or slightly more. I would see that I had “x” amount of calories “left” and think, hey! I can have a big piece of chocolate! when I wasn’t craving it. I was just eating because I could. On the opposite side, if I was calorie heavy in the morning, I found myself eating lighter in the day to make up for it, even though I was still hungry!

I think this part of it goes very much against the way I’ve been trying to eat. Ever since giving up calorie counting last spring, I’ve been working really hard at listening to my body and eating intuitively. Throw numbers and stats into the mix, and all that goes out the window.

With that said, stepping back and taking a look at what I’ve been eating for a week has been really helpful. It gave me the little kick in the butt I needed to clean up my eating, and get rid of the little bits of food here and there that were beginning to add up. I also realized that I’ve been eating too little fat and that I could use to cut back on my added sugars, and even natural sugars.

I will not be logging my food religiously after today. But, I will continue to use calorie counting in the future as a means to “check-in” once in a while. Make sure I’m listening to my body properly, and not getting too complacent with my food choices.

So there you have it! I’m definitely coming off this “experiment” feeling much better than when I went in :)

Oh! And I got an interview at Starbucks! Monday at 2pm :D It’s the location that’s managed by an old co-worker, who apparently no longer holds a grudge that I once took the store manager title from him. I’m hoping the interview is just a formality and I’m as good as hired. I was clear with him that I’m looking for a seasonal job to get me through till I find a more permanent position (whatever the hell that may be). Did you know Starbucks employees get a free pound of coffee a week? That’s worth it alone!

Question of the day: What’s your “inner age?” I’ve always been mature for my age, my family has always called me an “old soul.” I’d say I’m a solid 75 on the inside. Give me my knitting, fuzzy slippers, 9pm bedtime and candy dish and I’m good to go ;)

Mo Money Mo Problems

Is it just me or is this week dragging? I think there’s some law in physics that says as soon as you give notice at your job, the weeks that follow are the slowest of your life.

Or, I assume there’s a law. I failed the physics portion of grade 10 science.

But I do know that today was Waffle Wednesday!! The perfect way to perk up my hump day blues :D

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Blueberry waffles! Using my usual protein pancake recipe (found under the Eats tab) and a handful of frozen blueberries.

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Is that a peek of natural daylight I see on there!? I managed to sleep in till 7am today, so breakfast was photographed as the sun was rising over the river :)

I recently read an article by Tosca Reno in Clean Eating Magazine about all the benefits of wheat grass. I can’t find the article online, but she basically talks about how it’s a natural detoxifier, etc. I’m not always an easy sell, and this small article totally convinced me!

I don’t have any straight-up wheat grass, but I do have a whole canister of plain Amazing Grass SuperFood. It’s not a smoothie powder, but more of an “addition,” like a shot of greens to any smoothie. Anyways, I thought I’d just try it as a shot mixed with a little unsweetened vanilla almond milk.

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Most normal people would take one look at this and back off. It looks disgusting.

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Yeah, well it tasted disgusting too. I will not be doing this again. Experiments with SuperFood however will continue…

I was hoping the greens would give me a bit of a magical boost for spin class today. I actually convinced Chris to come with me this time! Chris is a hardcore cyclist. He does mostly road cycling these days, but he was also quite the mountain biker back in the day. The man is obsessed (and also taught me everything I know about bikes).

Ironically, it was Chris’ first spin class. It was funny to see such a pro on a spin bike. I forgot to tell him not to go all out at the beginning, because our class gets much harder as it goes on. Even if I had, I don’t think it would have mattered. The boy needs to go as fast as possible whenever possible :P

Afterwards, we went out for lunch. I had some turkey.

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Except mine was in a pita… at Pita Pit. Anyone else creeped out that this bird has manboobs? I find the decorations in this place to be really trippy.

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  • turkey
  • hummus
  • lettuce
  • green pepper
  • mushrooms
  • onions
  • tomatoes
  • olives
  • pickles
  • sprouts

Chris got a chicken caesar.

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Caught mid-chew.

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Caught mid-stuffing-face. I’m just replacing my depleted sodium stores from sweating in spin class ;)

Then I got called into work early. Boo. Managed to sneak home for a quick dinner though.

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Grilled tuna sandwich and carrot sticks. That’s just one carrot! It was ginormous!!! Way bigger than a parsnip even. I ate it all. I’m a carrot fiend. No shame.

 

So I have a confession to make. I’ve been suffering from a little blogger envy lately. I’ve been comparing myself to others, and it’s not good.

No, I’m not talking about people running faster than me, eating healthier than I, or looking better in a bikini.

I found I was getting jealous that many bloggers seem to have the financial means to do and buy many things that I, at this point, could only dream of. I found myself wishing that I too could afford to just hop on a plane and attend a big event. I can hardly splurge on a new coat and yet every day I read about someone else buying a new SLR camera and fancy new lens to boot.

Truth is, I’m more poor now than I was as a university student. It will be a long time until I can afford even a decent food processor. I am by no means looking for sympathy. Growing up in a wealthy family, I learned that money does not buy happiness. As a result, I put little importance on it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t sometimes wish for certain items, or dream of travelling when I can’t.

But I think it’s important to remember that I don’t need fancy plates to be a good blogger. I don’t need a dehydrator to be a healthy eater. I shouldn’t compare myself to these other people, but instead be content with what I do have.

Lunch may not have been a five course meal at a fancy restaurant, but dammit, it was cheap and good. And I know you guys can appreciate that ;)

 

Question of the Day: If you won the lottery, what would you do with the money? Travel is the obvious answer here, but for interest sake, I would also buy a really expensive bottle of whiskey, a commuter bike and PB2 :)

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