Month: October 2010

And the Winner Is…

Thanks for all your kind words and support on this morning’s post. It’s going to be a long road ahead so your positive thoughts and prayers have and will continue to help tremendously as my family works through this rough time.

I came back to DC last night after going to church in the morning with my sister in Philly, and Wil and I went to the grocery store to pick up a few things. I needed some things for lunch and dinners this week, and he bought some ingredients to make dinner for us last night… Fall Inspired Veggie Lasagna!

FallLasagna

I was busy unpacking and doing other things while he was cooking, but he made the lasagna dough from scratch, and then layered this casserole with the homemade pasta, sweet potatoes, celery root, mushrooms, turnip greens (from our CSA), acorn squash, ricotta cheese, and shredded mozzarella. He baked it for about an hour and it got all bubbly and hot. I’d never had a fall inspired lasagna with root veggies and squash before, and this was AWESOME. I froze about half of it, and then we had some for dinner last night…

MyPortion

Plus a salad that I made with a spinach base, roasted pecans, dried cranberries, and goat cheese

DinnerSalad

You better believe I gladly had leftovers for lunch today. 🙂

Last night at the grocery store, we went to the new Georgetown Safeway in DC. It’s been all the rage since it opened up a few months ago because it has an enormous produce section and is just huge. Going Sunday night was probably not the ideal time to go because it was SO crowded and I hate having so many people around when I’m trying to go up and down aisles, so I didn’t even make it to the prepared foods section which I hear is unreal. One thing that did amaze me was their make-your-own-nut-butter station.

MakeYourOwnNutButter

The Whole Foods I go to has three of these where you can make peanut butter, honey peanut butter, or almond butter. I’ve tried honey peanut butter the last time I was there and I loved it because the consistency is so good and it tastes so fresh!

The Safeway last night had almond butter, peanut butter, cashew butter, chocolate peanut butter, honey peanut butter, and a few others I’m sure I’m missing. The chocolate peanut butter had just roasted peanuts and chocolate chips in it, and everything else just had the nuts! It was SO awesome and I’ve never tried cashew butter before, so I decided to churn a little and give it a try. Breakfast today was an Oikos blueberry yogurt, a small sliced banana, raw oats, and a big spoonful of the cashew butter.

Breakfast

This was SO delicious. The flavor of the fresh churned nut butter just blows away the jarred stuff, in my opinion. It’s hard to describe the texture but it’s light and airy, almost like whipped peanut butter, but its got little chunks of peanuts throughout so there’s a bite to it. It’s not quite as chunky as traditional chunky peanut butter, but there are little chunks in every bite so I almost prefer it even though I am a chunky girl at heart (no pun intended… ;)).

Also, the winner of the Vitalicious giveaway! Congratulations to #38 – Holly of Couch Potato Athlete! She said, “I have to go with choc w/PB chips — I’ve never tried Vitatops but I’ve heard they taste pretty good.” Congratulations, Holly! Please email me your address info at bethklein at gmail dot com so I can pass it along to the Vitalicious peeps and get you your Super Sampler.

What is your favorite type of nut butter? Crunchy or creamy?

RIP Baby Tristan Livore

There’s no easy way to say this, but this weekend was really, really tough and one of the saddest things I could ever even fathom experiencing. I went up to Philly on Thursday to help out my sister and her husband, Wendy and Justin, and to visit my teeny nephews. Wendy was feeling pretty under the weather so I just helped them with mundane tasks like laundry, cleaning, cooking, taking care of the dog, etc. Then, Saturday early afternoon, the call came. Tristan was not doing well, and was likely not going to make it.

Wendy and Justin had to rush to the NICU, and Justin’s mom, Beth, and I went to meet them shortly after. What followed was one of the saddest and most heart wrenching experiences that I could ever even dream up. Justin and Wendy got to give Tristan his first and last bath, and hold him for the very first time. Their pastor came and baptized him right before he passed, and it was so special to get to be a part of it, but so, so devastating to be there as my sister lost her baby Tristan. Luckily Harper is doing extremely well and we’re hoping that Tristan continues to watch down from above and protect his baby brother. Please, please keep praying and sending positive thoughts and vibes for my sister and her family – – they need it more than ever.

I know this is a very tough topic and something no one wants to even think about, but this blog has served as my journal in a lot of ways to vent my frustrations and share my triumphs, and this is obviously the most important thing to me right now.  It feels very weird to be back at work today and have to function like normal after experiencing such a tremendous loss, but I am here and trying to keep trucking along.

Time for a Vitalicious Giveaway!!

Hey there! I am pretty excited because today is my Friday!! I’m going up to visit my sister and nephews this afternoon in Philly, and staying through Saturday. Harper had heart surgery yesterday and it went well, but recovery can be the hard part. I’m feeling very positive and appreciate all the kind words, positive thoughts, and prayers that you’ve all sent even more than you know. 🙂

Last night I made dinner in under 20 minutes and it was totally delicious. I cooked up some brown minute rice (ready in 10), and while that was going I browned some tofu in a pan. I steamed this bag of frozen veggies from Trader Joe’s in a pan with some water:

FrozenVeggies

And then added about half of this jar of Tikka Masala Curry Sauce from World Market:

CurrySauce

I got this at World Market ages ago and last night was the perfect night for it because I wanted something quick since I had a lot stuff to do to get ready for Philly today.

I mixed the heated veggies with the tofu and the sauce and poured it over some of the brown rice…

TofuCurryoverBrownRice

And it was AWESOME. I realize this isn’t the prettiest picture on Earth, but I promise it tasted really good. I highly recommend that curry sauce!

So, honestly, I don’t even know who I am anymore. I went for a run this morning and check out these stats:

  • Distance: 3.51 miles
  • Duration: 31:02
  • Pace: 8:51
  • Speed: 6.8 mph
  • Calories: 397

Me? Running under a 9 minute mile? I don’t even know what came over me. It was pretty chilly when I got outside (before 7am!) so I think I ran like the wind to warm up since my first mile was 7:58 (WHAT!?) and then slowed down a bit for the next 2.5, finishing those around 9:15ish. I am not going to lie and say that I felt good after the run – I wanted to die just a little bit. But after I recovered and drank some water, I started feeling better and really proud. Now if I can just get somewhere in that range on Sunday’s 10th run that’s a 10k on 10-10-10 I will be one happy camper.

And now… my first giveaway in ages!!

Last night I got home and had a Super Sampler from Vitalicious waiting for me!! It had a variety of VitaTops and VitaBrownies, and I wasted no time trying a new to me flavor… Fudgy Peanut Butter Chip!

FudgeyPeanutButterChipVT

The peanut butter chips got all melty when I put this in the toaster and it was AWESOME. I love VitaTops but I’ve only tried a few flavors so I’m excited to sample the rest of them! This morning I had a toasted Triple Chocolate Chunk VitaTop over my Pumpkin Overnight Oats.

OvernightPUmpkinOatsVita

Perfection. Into a bowl last night went:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup light soy milk
  • 1 scoop chocolate vega shake-n-go
  • 1/2 tbsp chia seeds

And then I added the toasted VitaTop this morning and it was AWESOME.

From the website, “Founded in 1999, Vitalicious Foods Inc. is the market leader of innovative “vital and delicious” baked goods that promote a healthy lifestyle without sacrificing taste. First to market with 100-calorie servings, Vitalicious continues to lead the way with a holistic approach that maximizes satisfaction with minimum calories. Vitalicious creates and sells a variety of unique, healthy, value-added baked goods under the VitaMuffin™, VitaTops™, VitaBrownie™, VitaCake™ and VitaMuffin Mix™ trademarks.”

These are delicious treats that have only 100 calories, 3-4 grams of protein, 5-6 grams of fiber, and 0-1.5 gram of fat (aka 1 point on WW!). They make a perfect dessert if you have it over ice cream or fro yo, a great snack drizzled with some almond butter, or a perfect oatmeal topper in the AM!

And one lucky reader gets one of the same sampler packs that I received! Their picture is way better than mine:

supersampler

There are three ways to enter. One is a must, and then you can do 2 or 3 or both for extra chances to win!

  1. Visit the Vitalicious website and tell me which flavor of VitaTop, VitaMuffin, or VitaBrownie you most want to try.
  2. Tweet about this giveaway (I am @bethsjourneytt)
  3. Write about this giveaway on your blog if you have one.

Make sure you leave a separate comment on this post for each entry. I will pick a random winner on Monday morning, so you have through Sunday to enter. Good luck!!

The Power of 10

Last night during my run I was thinking about my upcoming 10k on Sunday and how I would LOVE to finish in under an hour… then I was counting up all the races I’ve run and realized that it will be my 10th race.. a 10k… on 10-10-10. Weird!!!! (Side note: I finally created a Races page which has all the races I’ve participated in with finish times and links to recaps)

I mentioned in this morning’s post that when I opened my fridge to think about dinner last night/breakfast and lunch today, the can of pumpkin was calling my name. The other thing calling my name (from the freezer!) was these Meatless Meatballs that I bought at Trader Joe’s:

MeatlessMeatballs

1 serving is 6 (smallish) meatballs, and has 140 calories, 6 grams of fat, 4 grams of fiber, and a whopping 16 grams of protein (points value = 2). I was thinking about making pasta but wasn’t really feeling it, so decided to go with something similar to what was on the front of the package.. a meatball sub. I took out 2 servings (one for dinner and one for lunch) and dug to the back of my fridge to find some sauce when I realized I only had a tiny bit of sauce left.

So, to bulk it up, I combined equal parts of sauce with canned pumpkin, and mixed the meatballs in and simmered it for about 10 minutes until they were heated through.

MeatballswithSauce pumpkin

The pumpkin worked like a charm! It has a similar consistency to the sauce so kept it thick and chunky, and who can complain about an extra serving of veggies and extra fiber?

I loaded half of the mixture onto a piece of Ezekial bread and then topped it with some light shredded mozzarella (also from Trader Joe’s and only 1 point a serving!) and popped it in the oven to melt the cheese.

Finished OpenFaceSub

I also roasted some potatoes to go with the sub (random, I know, but I’m trying to use ‘em up!). I washed and sliced up the potatoes, and then mixed them with 1 tbsp olive oil first, and then added salt, pepper, and Italian Herb Garlic Gold.

SlicedPotatoesReadyfortheOven

I put them on a baking sheet

OnaBakingsheet

And roasted them at 400º for 25 minutes, turning once. They turned out perfect!

FinishedPotatoes

I could have kept them in for 5-10 more minutes but my patience was wearing thin. I served up about 1/3 of them on the side…

PotatoesonmyPlate

Plus some boiled green beans for an extra veggie kick.

GreenBeans
Overall it made for a very satisfying dinner (and lunch!)

WholePlate

It actually left me really stuffed after dinner, so I had a lot less potatoes with it for lunch and heated it in the microwave rather than the oven.

What’s the most creative way to use canned pumpkin that you’ve ever heard of or tried yourself?

Anger Works Wonders

Happy Hump Day! Thanks for all your feedback on my new glasses – I’m digging them! It’s definitely a little weird to adjust to when you’re used to wearing contacts because of the peripheral vision and I’ve definitely had to stop a few times while going up and down the escalator into the metro, but I’m getting used to them. In fact, last night I put my contacts in to go for a run and the contacts made me all dizzy, so I’m pretty sure I’m just screwing with my eyes bigtime.

Recently I have been having the perfect after work / pre-workout snack that has been so satisfying and perfect fuel before a workout.

Almond Butter and Honey Toast

One slice of Ezekial Sprouted Grain Bread (3.99 at Trader Joe’s which is WAYYY cheaper than in other grocery stores!) with crunchy almond butter and a drizzle of honey. Original? No. Delicious? Yes. I’d never tried the sprouted grain bread before and it is seriously delicious. The bread itself is pretty dense and soo satisfying. It gets perfectly crunchy when you toast it and stands up well to lots of toppings.

After my almond butter honey toast, I went out for a run. Something annoying happened at work right before I left, so I was feeling a little angry before my run. Anger seriously works wonders. I went out and had the fastest run I think I’ve ever had. I definitely felt like I was going really fast and towards the end really had to push myself to keep up the pace, but check out the stats:

  • Distance: 4.01 miles
  • Duration: 36:40
  • Pace: 9:09 (!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
  • Speed: 6.6mph
  • Calories: 460

I usually finish around 10 minute average, so to cut almost a whole minute off of 4 miles made me ecstatic. I did a pretty good job keeping up the pace too – the fastest mile was 9:02 (the first mile) and the slowest mile was 9:17 (the third mile), so only 15 seconds difference. I came in and felt a whole lot less angry! I did have a little bit of a chafing problem…

Chafing

It was actually bothering me a bit towards the end of my run (where my bra strap hits) but I almost never have any problems with chafing, so I was kind of surprised that it bothered me on just a 4 mile run. Luckily I have some Body Glide at home from a race expo so that I will be OK for one more run (tomorrow) before Sunday’s race.

When I opened my fridge for dinner, the can of pumpkin was crying out to be used, so I found out a sort of weird way to incorporate it into my meal, but I’ll be back at lunch to show you that because I’m having leftovers! I also used the pumpkin when preparing today’s breakfast… pumpkin overnight oats!

Though slightly sad when I used the last of the Crunchy Almond Butter for last night’s preworkout snack, it left me with one thing on my mind – Oats in a Jar! Into the mix went:

I basically used the pumpkin as a substitute for the yogurt since the consistency is similar, and it worked perfectly. It also happens to be vegan! (Also only 4 points on WW plus whatever was left in the jar worth of almond butter)

OatsinaJar

There was actually enough going on in the jar that I didn’t even need to top it off with anything… SO good! It had been far too long since I had OIAJ… yum.

Do you ever get chafing or any recurring issues from running/working out? What’s your favorite snack lately?

Two Quick-n-Healthy Meal Ideas

I looooove pizza. Sometimes I just have to have to have the real thing with a thick crust that’s crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, overflowing with melty cheese and delicious toppings (fig, red onion, and gorgonzola for example!) but sometimes a substitute will do.

Last night, I made a pizza with a tortilla crust for the first time. I know this is not a novel idea, but I was just craving a pizza and didn’t feel like making my own dough and was out of any other bready type thing to use for crust. I was also out of sauce/fresh tomatoes, so I improvised.

I took a whole wheat tortilla and added some chopped sundried tomatoes from Whole Foods that I nuked with some water for 30 seconds to soften them up. Then I piled on Light Shredded Mozz from Trader Joe’s and sprinkled it with some Italian Herb Garlic Gold

TortillaPizza

I threw it into the oven, preheated to 400º, for 10 minutes until the cheese got all melty and bubbly…

BakedPizza

And it was AWESOME. I was actually kind of surprised with how good it turned out considering I used a tortilla and had no sauce, but this was super flavorful and satisfying. The whole thing had 5 points on WW (2 for the tortilla, 2 for 1.5 servings of the cheese, and 1 for the sundried tomatoes) and was worth every bite. For a little extra substance, you could pair it with a broth based soup or a salad to have a well rounded meal.

Lunch today was another one of my go-to meals, a Baked Sweet Potato with Black Beans but this time I spiced it up a bit. Last night I sauteed a green bell pepper and 1/4 of an onion, then added 1/2 cup black beans, some chili powder, salt, and pepper.

OnionsPeppersBeans

I put this in a tupperware and brought it in for lunch today to serve over the baked sweet potato (that I made in the oven while making the pizza!). I also topped it with some goat cheese to make it more substantial.

SweetPotato

This whole thing was only 6 points on WW – 3 for the potato, 1 for the black beans, and 2 for the goat cheese. It was TASTY. You can easily change up the cheese, skip the cheese all together and add salsa to veganize it, or change up the spices with the beans. I normally just use plain black beans on top but its nice to change it up from time to time.

Also, I got my new glasses today…

NewGlasses

What do you think?? It’s kind of a weird adjustment going from contacts to glasses and I felt a little dizzy at first. I’m just happy to have them because I had no back up before if my eyes were bothering me and I cannot function at all without correction since my vision is pretty bad (-4.25).

What are some of your favorite quick meals to make for lunch/dinner?

Pumpkin Oats are Back!

Good morning and happy Tuesday! 🙂

So I just want to briefly touch on the big thing going on in blogland lately – the Marie Claire article called “The Hunger Diaries.” This article will be in the November issue of Marie Claire and is an extremely slanted article written by Katie Drummond basically saying that the healthy living blogging community perpetuates disordered eating and specifically mentions “The Big Six” (a term which I’d never heard until I saw the article), all of which I read – Caitlin, Jenna, Heather, Kath, Tina, and Meghann. I think many valid points have been made about the article, including the fact that a lot of what was said was taken completely out of context and manipulated to fit into the slanted view that Katie wanted to make the article show.

So I don’t want to beat a dead horse, I just want to say a few things:

1.) Realize that not everything you read is true. Luckily for me, I have read a lot of those blogs for some time so I know the girls are not running 22 miles and then eating a gluten free black bean brownie to refuel. One of the things that I LOVE about healthy living blogs and has really helped me to change my own body image and my own view of healthy eating and living is these blogs.

2.) You can eat whole, real foods, and still maintain or lose weight. A large part of why I started my own blog was to show that you can maintain a significant weight loss (~80 pounds) through eating mostly a whole foods, a view point that I struggled with a lot through my journey with Weight Watchers. WW preached fat-free and prepackaged everything, and I still struggle a bit with this concept because points are so drilled into my brain. Since “breaking up” with weight watchers a few weeks ago, I feel SO freed. If I’m hungry, I can eat something else even if I wouldn’t have had any points left if I was still following the plan. The same goes the other way (though much less so for me!) where I don’t NEED to eat 3 more points even if I have them left for the day.

3.) Some of these things needed to be said. I think being a part of the healthy living community can sometimes skew your view, mostly in terms of exercise. I remember when I had run 12 miles in the morning (my longest run ever at that point) and headed to a blogger meet up and I knew when I got there other people would have run farther that day. I mean, 12 miles is a lot. In most groups of people, if you walk in saying you have run that far, they will be in awe. I think you can sometimes lose your perspective on just how much you accomplish when you compare yourself to other bloggers who are running marathons or ultra marathons, doing century bike races, or participating in triathlons. As long as you are aware that you need to just compare yourself to YOU and focus on your own achievements based on where you are physically at any point in time, you’ll be OK. But sometimes it’s easy to get sucked up into the blog world where people are accomplishing amazing things and you can feel sub-par because you’re “only” running a half marathon.

So that’s that. Just wanted to put those things out there. 🙂

Now, onto the main event… pumpkin oats! I was so happy to see my beloved Libby’s pumpkin hit the shelves again…

CannedPumpkin

And my first (and second) go with it was for one of my fall favorites, pumpkin oats.

PumpkinOats1

In the mix:

– 1 cup water

– 1/4 cup scottish oats

– 1/2 cup canned pumpkin

– a lot of cinnamon

– Hemp Plus Pumpkin Flax Granola (bulk bins at Whole Foods)

– Powdered Peanut Butter!

For the peanut butter, I saw on Emily’s blog a review of different Powdered Peanut Butters which I’ve been curious about so I decided to go buy Trader Joe’s Peanut Flour.

Peanut Flour

You take 2 tbsp of the flour and mix it with a pinch of salt…

FlourwSalt

And then add 1 tbsp water and mix it up…

AllMixedUp

You can add more or less water to make it the consistency you desire depending on what you’re going to do with it (drizzle it for a topping v. thicker for a spoonful). I put the peanut butter on top of the oats along with some granola.

PumpkinOats

It was GOOD. It definitely doesn’t taste just like regular peanut butter, but for 55 calories or 1 point for 2 tablespoons, I think its worth it. I will be experimenting with it more and will keep you posted as I try different things with it!

Questions:

Have you used canned pumpkin yet this season? What have you done with it?

Are you into nut butter? What’s your favorite type?

Centered

Hiya! DC is sooo dreary and rainy and cold today – its so hard to want to be at work right now instead of curled up in my bed under the covers… But that’s why they call it work right?

Anyways, this weekend I felt very successful at getting back on track and woke up today feeling (relatively) good. After a 10 day hiatus from working out, on Saturday I went on an 11 mile bike ride and then did Bikram later in the afternoon. The last time I took a Bikram class was August 20th (!!) so it felt SO good to be back in the hot room sweating it out. I love that Bikram really challenges me both physically and mentally and forces me to get out of my comfort zone. I walked out of the class literally glowing (not just from the sweat) and felt like I had just pressed “reset” on healthy living. It always leaves me feeling so centered and calm, and Saturday night I just stayed in and cooked and laid low, and it felt so good to just relax (and not drink).

Yesterday I checked out a new church called Grace. I was raised Protestant and used to go to church often as a child, but then as I got older church started becoming less and less frequent. When I moved away from home, church became even less a part of my life, and I would only go very occasionally on holidays when it worked out. A few Easters ago, I went to my sister Wendy’s church and it made me see church in a whole new light. She goes to a progressive Christianity church where people wear jeans and its a very casual service with tambourines and dancing during the songs. I never even knew that a church like this existed, so I sort of renewed my interest. In the last few months, I’d been wanting to try to find a church like that in DC, when I got a piece of mail that said “Hate Church?” on the front and I turned the card over and it was for Grace Church, “A church for people who don’t go to church.”

It spoke to me a lot and I had been looking forward to going yesterday for a few weeks, since I was away the two Sundays before yesterday. And let me tell you, the service did not disappoint! It was a very laid back service and the pastor was hysterical. He was talking about his own coming to terms with religion and said that God works slowly, and is “more like a crockpot than a microwave”! Everyone laughed out loud, and there were several other funny moments during the sermon. Also, they showed a clip from Seinfeld (the one where Elaine is dating a religious guy and he tells her she’s going to Hell). The whole service was just very uplifting, and the message was about being kind and not judgmental towards others. There was even a 5 piece band and they played contemporary Christian rock rather than traditional hymns.

Anyways, I don’t usually talk about religion on here at all, but lately I’ve been feeling a need for something more in my life, especially in light of what is going on with my nephews. They are doing alright right now, but Harper has to have heart surgery today. They both are feisty and fighters, but really need positive thoughts and prayers, so please keep ’em coming.

After yesterday’s service with the mention of crockpot, I decided to pull mine out and made a delicious, hearty, bean and veggie stew. It cooked for 6 hours and turned out sooo good. It was so nice to have a hot, filling soup on such a cold, drizzly day.

I also went out for my first run since my half marathon and it felt REALLY good. I wasn’t quite sure how far I wanted to go, but once I set out and the weather was feeling cool and perfect for running, I decided to do 5 miles. I regretted that just a bit when it started drizzling on my way back and was in a full blown rain by the time I made it home, but I was so happy that I had such a great run after a 2 week hiatus. Here are the stats:

Distance: 5.o miles

Duration: 48:06

Avg. Pace: 9:37 (!)

Calories: 604

The miles ranged from 9:17 – 9:46, but I was VERY proud of finishing the 5 miles in that time. I have wanted to finish a 10k in under an hour for a while now, and I have one coming up on Sunday. The last 10k I ran I had that goal, and I finished in 60:01. I kid you not. Two seconds over my goal. Anyways, I would love to reach that goal on Sunday, but won’t beat myself up if I don’t.

I forgot my cord to connect my camera to my computer to upload pics, but I’ll be back tonight to share my Confetti Bean Stew recipe and show you my first interaction with canned pumpkin this season!

1.) What was the best part of your weekend?

2.) Are you a religious/spiritual person? How is where you are now different from how you were raised?

Time to Regroup

Today is the first day I’ve had off in two weeks since I worked through last weekend at the conference in Columbus. I was so looking forward to sleeping in and not setting an alarm for the first time in 15 days… but at 5:10 am Wil’s alarm went off because he accidentally set it and I woke up for about an hour and a half before I could fall back asleep. Boo.

I feel like I’ve gotten pretty off track since my half marathon. Granted, I’ve had a lot going on in my personal life as well as my work life, but excuses are excuses, and it’s important for me to focus on myself a bit even when a lot of other things are going on. You’ve probably noticed that I haven’t written about working out in some time… that’s because I took 10 full days off from any form of exercise! I can’t even tell you the last time I went that long without working out, and it didn’t feel very good. It hung over my head almost daily, but I just couldn’t get it together to go to the gym. I was working almost 17 hour days in Columbus and then just exhausted when I got back and had to go grocery shopping, clean, unpack, laundry, etc, etc.

On top of the lack of exercise, I’ve been really lax with eating junk and drinking, and I think all three go very hand-in-hand for me. I’m not saying I haven’t had fun or enjoyed myself with it, I’ve just been feeling kind of gross lately for lack of a better word. Last night after work I went for a drink with my coworker Emily at Bar Dupont. They had an awesome drink menu with cocktails that are normally $11 priced at just $5 for happy hour from 4-6.

I went with the Alan’s Love, which had Smirnoff Pear Vodka, St. Germaine, Honey, Muddled Cucumber, and Lime.

It was AWESOME. Perfect level of sweetness for me and had a nice fresh taste from the cucumber and lime. We were served some bar snacks:

Mixed Nuts, Wasabi Peas, and Corn Nuts. Perfect crunch to go with the drink. We also ordered a flatbread to share.

With fig jam as the sauce, gorgonzola, dried figs, and arugula. SO good. Figs twice in one day is fine by me! 🙂

After Bar Dupont, we ventured over my friend Jess and Amy’s new apartment and had a few more drinks and snacks. We also played dress up…

Amy, Me, and Jess. They have a chest full of costumes and we went a little crazy with it… I have a flapper wig on, a hula skirt, and a sequenced tube top over my clothes. Ha. ‘Twas a fun night!

But I woke up today feeling like I really needed to get it together and start taking care of myself better. I started out by making a delicious breakfast with potato hash and an egg. I started with a potato, a green pepper, and an onion…

I chopped up half the potato

And then nuked it with some water for 3 minutes to cook it. While that was going, I chopped up half the pepper and a chunk of onion.

And then added the onion, 1 tsp of olive oil, and 1 clove of garlic to a pan. After a minute, I tossed in the pepper too.

Once that was going for 3-4 minutes and the onion and pepper were getting soft, I tossed the cooked potatoes into the mix…

And cooked it for one more minute. I cracked an egg directly on top of the potato hash…

Added a little veggie stock to create some steam, and covered the pan until the egg white was cooked through.

Carefully transfered it to a bowl, and voila!

I also had a toasted Bagel Thin on the side.

To help soak up the perfectly cooked yolk…

So good. (FYI – this whole bowl was 4 points on WW, plus 1 for the bagel thin, for a total of 5. 1/2 potato = 1, 1 tsp olive oil = 1, egg = 2, bagel thin = 1)

After that, I went on an amazing bike ride and it felt sooooo good. My goal was to keep all the miles under 5:00 minutes, and I discovered this 11 mile loop the last time I went biking (11 days ago…) that I went for again. Here are the stats:

Distance: 11.01 miles

Duration: 48:50

Avg. Speed: 13.5 mph

Avg. Pace: 4:26 min/mile

Calories: 701

It is an absolutely gorgeous day in DC – around 70 degrees, sunny, and clear. It felt so nice to be outside and work up a sweat. I don’t know WHY I let myself go so long without exercise because its one thing that always makes me feel good.  My plan for the rest of the day is to try to hit up Bikram at 4 because that always helps me get back into a healthy mindset and sweat it out big time, and then laying low. I am really enjoying the relaxation factor this weekend is bringing, and really need to take some time for me. I’m also going to try to lay off drinking because I much prefer waking up feeling refreshed, rather than with a headache. It’s just so hard when if you want to hang out with friends, all there is to do is drink! Argh.

How has your weekend been so far? What is your favorite way to “regroup” when you feel like you’ve gotten off track? Suggestions welcome. 🙂

Broiled Brown Sugar Figs

This morning when I opened my fridge to figure out what to have for breakfast, the fresh figs were faintly calling my name. I’m pretty sure that was largely due to the fact that they have such a short shelf life and were begging to be used before turning, so I obliged.

Figs1

The best part about eating figs besides their incredible subtle sweetness and flavor, is that they are SO easy to prepare. All you have to do is wash them…

Figs

Trim off the tops…

CutOfftheTop

Cut one in half…

CutinHalf

And then the rest…

Cut in Half

And you can stop right there if you like and eat them over yogurt or oatmeal, or just straight up.

I decided to do something a little special this morning, and sprinkled 1 tbsp light brown sugar between them.

Topped w Brown Sugar

I turned the broiler on high and placed them in for 5 minutes while the brown sugar caramelized and the figs themselves got warm and melty.

Broiled

If you are feeling generous, you could easily split this into 2 portions, but I was feeling pretty selfish this morning…

BJTT 222

And topped a 6 oz container of Fage 0% with the brown sugar broiled figs and some sliced almonds.

BJTT 221

The warm, almost crunchy figs from the caramelized brown sugar was a perfect contrast to the creamy, thick greek yogurt and the sliced almonds were a welcome added crunch to the bowl. Heaven.

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