Monday, October 31, 2011

Workout Log Challenge - Day 2

A 'la Oh She Glows

Date: 2011-10-31

Type of workout/duration: Step (Cathe Basic Step): 35 minutes.

Hours of sleep: 6 hours (I fought myself/instincts for at least this much)

My mood before/during/after exercise: I started and ended super sleepy, and somewhat amazed I made it through the whole thing without busting an ankle due to uncharacteristic lack of coordination.

Exercise struggles:  Said uncharacteristic lack of coordination.  This is a step combo I've done many times before as well.

Exercise progress:  Went well, worked up a nice sweat.

How I felt the rest of the day: Exercise did my spirits well, but had some stomach ailments to what I suspect to be a food intolerance.  Looking to investigating further.

Other things to note:  Another early to bed, early to rise!  Tomorrow afternoon I am going to the gym with a friend, but I will still fit in a little something tomorrow morning.  Hopefully with more coordination!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Workout Log Challenge - Day 1

A 'la Oh She Glows

Date: 2011-10-30

Type of workout/duration: Step/Strength Interval (Cathe Body Fusion): 50 minutes.

Hours of sleep: 10 hours (went to bed super early as I am a super sad individual :)

My mood before/during/after exercise: I was super psyched because of my re-commitment to physical activity/thought it wasn't doing much at first, then realized I was working a sweat/Felt great!

Exercise struggles:  I wanted to go to the gym, but I allowed my issues with Blogger to get in the way of getting there on time.

Exercise progress:  While I did wind up working up a sweat, I want to increase activity.

How I felt the rest of the day: Very calm.  I always feel like it is a great day if I get exercise in early rather than later.

Other things to note:  Hope to get to bed on time tonight so I can get up early tomorrow for more step.  I fear I'd have to get up super early if I want to run as I'd have to drive to the gym.  No way I'm running in that dark.

A B'klynHeart Mantra: Resolution. Evolution. Revolution.

  • Resolution a resolve or determination: to make a firm resolution to do something;  the act of resolving or determining upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, etc.;  the mental state or quality of being resolved or resolute; firmness of purpose.

  • Evolution - any process of formation or growth; development; a process of gradual, peaceful, progressive change or development.

  • Revolution - a sudden, complete or marked change in something; a procedure or course, as if in a circuit, back to a starting point; a single turn of this kind.

  • Game Face on.
    As of late, The Voice has gained influence in the mornings.

    (No, not that The Voice.*)

    I don't know if I've blogged about it before, but I do know that I've told many of The Voice, the thing in the back of my head that tells me the all of the important and fully valid reasons why I should not exercise.  These excuses include:

    You've worked a full day today and you're tired.  Surely exercise will only make you more tired!  (I know this is a falsehood, but "the voice" says it with such conviction...)

    Hey, it's pretty hot outside.  You hate exercising in the hot weather, and the gym is pretty far, you car won't even cool down by the time you get there!  (LIES, all of them, but they sound so true...)

    Hey, it's cold outside.  Your toes will freeze and it'll just be miserable and you'd give up anyway!  (More lies.  I sometimes like the cool better than the warm.  Also, after about 30 seconds of movement I'm ready to start taking off layers.... but The Voice does have a point about my toes, which freeze almost instantly, so...)

    And finally, the iron-clad, number one excuse my The Voice has given me to not exercise at any particular time I even have a vague thought to do so:

    Today's day name ends in the letter Y.  You really shouldn't exercise today.

    How do you even begin to argue that?

    About a year and change ago, I discovered a chink in the armor that is the voice, a way to get my fitness in and not allow the voice to interfere.  It was pretty simple:

    The Voice, much like The Husband, loves to sleep in.

    Hence, I started waking up super early to get in my run, step, Body Pump, gym, random On Demand workout videos... all while The Voice peacefully slept away.

    This worked for a very long time... 

    ... but lately (and perhaps it was bored with nothing to do, so it started going to bed earlier), I've started hearing The Voice in the morning.

    The message is clear and simple:

    You can always do that later.

    Well played, The Voice.  Well played.

    You see, with very little effort, all of the old excuses become stronger, and my intents weaker.  My clever plan no longer works, and later never comes.

    I'm finding this is leaving me a little irritated (mostly at myself), frustrated (mostly at myself) and completely miserable.  As of late, it is also finding me slipping back to old, bad habits.

    I've been trying to put on a brave and happy face... but I realize I haven't been actually done anything to change my circumstances.
    - - - - -
    Now, many things have sparked a vague motivation in the past couple of months that fizzled after two seconds (The Voice is good), but reading a blog entry on Oh She Glows has got me once again thinking I want to get started again, but this time with an outlined plan.

    To the voice, I will simply drown it out with my mantra:

    The idea came from yoga (when I tried to start that up again); the instructor taught us about the universal Soham mantra to help regain focus in the practice when our minds started to wander off to places, and I found it really helped and refocused my practice.

    During a run shortly thereafter, where all I wanted to do was stop and go home and simply not exercise (I really don't know why, the effort pays off and I feel great, yet I still never want to get started), my mind focused in on three words:

    It Evolved to include the other two words, which I found to sound very similar and be very applicable to my life.  I just listened to the words, and repeated them over and over in my head methodically, "feeling" the shape of their sounds. 
    It ended with a Resolution to finish my run... but wait, I already had.  
    Where does the time go? 
    So these are my new weapons to combat the voice and not only regain my fitness, but also other areas of my life as well. 

  • Have a plan.   
  • Remember my mantra and use it to combat The Voice.
  • Blog all about it.  Because I know the two of you who actually read my blog are totally interested, right?

  • That's that.  I'm now actually off to the gym, as was my resolution to blog before heading out.  I'll be checking in and letting you know my progress, as well as catch up on many fun adventures as of late, including our trip to Asheville NC, more vegan cooking, a little more detail about my mantra, and upcoming projects of all sorts.

    Let it be cold outside, and let The Voice try to stop me.  I'm getting back in the game!
    *Oddly enough, my "the voice" can sometimes achieve that particular Aguilera warble we all know well.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Good Cook Day

So, yes, we all know how much I am in love with my own cooking The Husband, such that I spend hours laboring over food preparation hours cleaning the kitchen in order to slowly enjoy my food bite-by-bite in some Herbal Essences commercial state provide him a good home-cooked healthy meal.
I may have a problem.
I know I go around saying that my cooking produces "masterpieces", which is hardly true even when considering it is solely from my perspective.  Monday however... Monday I felt like I hit them all out of the park.

Starting with breakfast... which was just a typical tofu scramble... and  is not pictured (Awwww...) but let me tell you why I thought it was great:

1) Tofu press - The best thing that ever happened to my (insert name of tofu based dish here).  It really gets the moisture out (without killing all of my paper towel supply).  Tofu comes out nice and firm and then absorbs all of the lovely flavors.

Tofu torture device.  Vegan cooking is vicious.
2) Spices!  The spice must flow.  My collection of (yes, Penzey) spices has grown, and with it... the possibilities.  I sometimes feel like a mad scientist.

3) Black salt!  Kala Namak is the new third best thing to happen to my tofu scrambles.  I read about it on the interwebs (and a few of the scramble recipes  I've tried) and how it can add that "eggy flavor" to the tofu.  Now... I took a whiff from the bag and thought two things:  Yes, eggy.  No, not the eggy I want.  In any case, I did take the gamble, and it paid off big time.

Hence, no picture.  Maybe next time.
Delicious smelling and tasting when added to food.
Just don't stick your nose in it while in this form.

Later in the day, dinner took place.  I did manage to capture a couple of snaps before the devourination:

 1) Gardein Tuscan Breast topped with Balsamic/Thyme roasted tomatoes.  I can't claim the breast, but I did throw together the tomatoes as a way to balance out what I thought was an over sweet sauce last time I had it (not bad, but wasn't my ideal).  This came out gorgeous.

2) Brussels Sprouts.  Please go look at that link.  I beg you.  Then you'll understand why when I was planning to steam some broccolini to go with this dish I suddenly said (to my monitor, the only thing staring back at me at the time) "I need to have brussels sprouts tonight."  Even knowing now that brussels sprouts are not the root of all evil, it's never a sentence I thought I'd utter out loud.  In any case... yes, it was perfection as promised.  Win.

The dinner trifecta.
I really wish I could reach into the screen and eat this.
3) Lulu's Mac and Cheese from Peas and Thank You.  The recipe I've linked here, but it is also available in the book, where Mama Pea described herself as a "Deluxe" girl.  That spoke to me.  Considering a good portion of the weight that I lost that wasn't pizza was probably "Deluxe".

Now, as I was pulling this together, I had my doubts.  Especially when it didn't look like it was pulling together.  And then...



[Deluxe Herbal Essences Commercial Moment]*

Texture, flavor, gooey... all wonderful and perfect.  This was the macaroni  I should have made those many days ago... but then again, perhaps I didn't because the mac was meant for this meal.

It was Thanksgiving somewhere right?
Oh, Canada!
Hat trick, and straight out of the park.  I think Brussels and Mac go on ye olde Thanksgiving menu, and a few more recipes to try there...
* ... Buster?!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Have spent the day in pain, though it is starting to lift a bit.  I hope it lifts a lot more in short order, as sick is not my thing.

The story of me and cow goes like this:  There used to be a time where I thought cow was the only way to choke down A1 sauce, or possibly the other way around.  Then I got introduced to medium well (good bye, A1), medium, medium rare, and then rare.  Each I liked better and better.  Eventually I arrived at the one I like best of all:  The one where the cow lives and I don't have to eat it.  

I think it is funny, at least, when I think about it.  May be the delirium from pain killers.

Those who know me know I am a fan of cows (as well as turtles, rabbits and frogs).  I may have more than one cow stuffed animal, and who cares if I'm in my mid-to-late 30s?  When The Husband and I went pumpkin picking (for about 3 minutes before his job called), I got to meander around and grab a few snaps of some cows and other things that I'll share... as I'm too low energy to blog about food and cooking, and those need time and care.

I bet you're surprised I take time and care on this blog.  I was certainly surprised I even wrote that sentence.


I wish I'd picked this up, these are so darn cute.
Is The Husband taking notes?

No.By the way... when will "then" be "now"?

Was my grandmother's name Macintosh Apple?

When I was a kid visiting relatives in NC, one had a rider mower
that I was insanely jealous of.  This is not a rider mower,
but I like to commemorate the moment I was jealous
of a straw man.

When my husband
saw this, his mind went to corn sex.

Now I know what to do with my water tank.

So I told you I love cows.
I can now tell you sometimes I'm creeped out by them.

Though this guy was cute.

I don't believe I signed a release for this picture of me .
I may be due some royalties...

* Either a great cow impersonation, or a bad ghost impersonation.  Any Ghost.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Veggin' Out

I enjoy my own cooking.  From start to finish.

It's a good thing.

I savor cooking, the endless chopping and grinding and whisking and folding and impatient hopping on one foot waiting for water to boil.
A bit of foreshadowing:  We'll begin and end with
a shot of a breakfast meal...
Then, I get to eat whatever masterpiece springs forth from my kitchen.

... but maybe I exaggerate.  They're not all masterpieces.  Mostly though, which I'm fine with.

I'm also fine with mistakes... from there rises learning.

However, I do enjoy eating out.  Recently the experience has been made that much more pleasurable by having some vegan options.

By an extraordinary stroke of pure luck*, I had three.  In a row!

I think you are plotting to make me eat plants in this very loud
hipster establishment, woman!  Wait, what?
What did you say?
You're adorably old, my dear The Husband.

We got to hit up The Bellytimber Tavern the night we went to The Byrd Theater for A Night with the Mighty Wurlitzer.  The Husband got himself a white pizza with 'maters on top (certainly not The Husband 'maters, but it smelled pretty tasty).  For me, a Vegan Veggie pizza.  Only my second vegan pizza ever in the history of ever.  And the first since I actually started eating vegan food for serious.  The pizza was very tasty, but not really tasting of pizza in the cheese department.  I think they use Daiya?  Not sure... it tasted creamy.  I'll have to experiment more with this.

The Bellytimber Tavern
This pie was flippin' HUGE.  If I didn't have my totally
imaginary second stomach for pizzas only,
I may not have been able to finish the whole thing.

Was he sad he didn't get a vegan pie?
That it was not bigger?  That the place
was so loud he couldn't hear his pizza?

This had broccolini, shrooms, onions, olives, 'mater sauce, 
and not cheese.  Tasted good, but unexpectedly creamy.
Fun fact: That ring on my thumb is my original wedding band.

The next day saw us at a race, followed by five minutes at a pumpkin patch (unfortunately for us, his job rang and he had to answer...)

The Husband noted he selected his B'klyn<3
from a bin very much like this one once.
... And they say romance is dead.
Him, me and orange carriages.  Something
about that rings familiar...
"Hey!  This is vegan!"

Below, sadly, is the one sad picture I managed to take of my meal at Sticky Rice in mid-devour.  There also managed to be a seaweed salad, a cucumber-umeboshi roll, and "Garden Balls"... so entirely too much food, but this monstrosity took the cake.  The fake fowl in this "Mock Chicken Szechuan" was nothing short of uncanny.  I admit; I had to confirm it was vegan.  Very tasty (fresh crisp veg, sweet pineapple, buckwheat noodles forever...), I may need to restrain myself from it in the future due to temptation to attempt a whole-bowl hoovering...

You can easily share this bowl with 3 of your friends
or 1 of your The Husband.

Sunday was a fun day where I got to go to a Vegetarian/Vegan lunch event! It took place at Mise en Place, and it was my first time ever going there... by myself in a car (remind me to enlighten you one day about how I don't drive anywhere ever... until recently).  It was my first time as such an event... well, since college, when I went to an etiquette dinner where the teacher advised I was doing it all wrong and grabbed my utensils from me, causing me to feel deeper shame than Catholicism ever did.

It was not my first time being late to anything though.

I had Vegan (Chickpea!) Frittata topped with Daiya, Root Vegetable Hash, and a vegan Cinnamon Bun.  The event was to help sponsor a chef leaving to study in China... ah, what tasty treats there will be in the future then!  This was so good.  I did want seconds of everything!

The meal shrank away from me in fear.
It knew it's tasty demise was imminent.
I'm excited to try even more tasty vegan treats around town... there appear to be several options.  However, right now B'klyn<3s need rest and relaxation... and they can't find a better place for that than in their own kitchen.

*All strokes of luck are meticulously planned at least 8 days in advance.  It still means I'll be late for something.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ode To The Husband's Brush With Fitness

He only looks cool.  Really, he's a bigger
dork than I am.
I figured for once you wouldn't want to hear about me and my (continued, yes!) struggles to run (and knit, and cook vegan, and chop carrots with fine precision, and the 872 hour process to make Beans on Toast... or some odd derivative).

Sometimes you want to hear about the man.

My man.

The Husband.

He did not join Weight Watchers with me, but he was very supportive.  As a result of not making me cook any other food except the low fat, healthy food I wanted to eat, he lost 100 pounds himself.  Which goes to show a couple of things:
  1. Anything you do healthy for yourself can be delicious and benefit your family.

  2. Sometimes, [Insert Your Diety of Choice Here] is unfair, and grants men the uncanny ability to eat P.F. Chang's Great Wall of Chocolate, not exercise really, and still lose 100 pounds.  It's great if you are capable of this... just don't mind me as I stare at you with daggers dripping in jealousy and loathing.  At least the daggers are made of love?
He did not go vegetarian, but he did not complain about the delicious vegetarian dishes I made for him the past few months.

He did not become a Veganist, but he's continued to support me in my endeavours and has enjoyed all of the delicious vegan food I've made for him.  Except perhaps the one thing.

He certainly did not become a runner, but every now and again he'll join me at a run on occasion.  It started out as 5K walks, and while I've taken off running, he still comes out, supports, and walks.

One day, I'd like to convince him the below rare occurance could be sustained over many minutes and that he could run with me.  I'd love that... but at least he's out there.  He's supporting and he's trying.

He may not always be by my side, but I know he's always got my back.

The Husband!

See The Husband!

See The Husband run!

Run, The Husband!  Run!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Beans on... Oats? Sacrilicious!

Warning - If you are not a fan of savory oats or just not used to my sometimes strange food fetishes, stop reading... NOW, see you tomorrow!  *smootches*

Oh, you're still here?  

Don't say I didn't warn you.


I won't lie.  I totally went there.

Creamy breakfast porridge with sweet Heinz 57 beans
When I was a child, I had a fever. 

My hands felt just like two oven mitts.  

This morning I had that fever once again, I can't explain, you would not understand... 

This is exactly who I am.  I'm a freak.

So essentially my desire to have beans, oatmeal and spinach spilled into my second ever savory oatmeal.  Once again, the first bite took some mind adjustments.  I wound up actually liking the dish, though I think next time I'd add in some actual garlic.

The Husband kept pretty reserved until I got out of him he hated everything about it except the beans.  "Then," he said, "it's just beans!"

Indeed, sir.  Indeed.

Pretty much what I'd envisioned when I could
have been fast asleep...
Oh.  And you know I added spinach.  

Hate me all you want.  Hate it all you want.  I enjoyed every last bite.
(Besides, told you I was a freak, you can't stop me.)

In any case, it hit the spot and I think I won't be seeing it again until the dead of winter.  It struck me as a dead of winter need-my-proteins-to-stick-to-my-bones kind of dish.  

And guess what, The Husband?

Winter is coming.

(Yup.  Totally went there too.)

Beans on Oats

Serves 2

1 cup uncooked old fashioned pats
2.2 cups water
Pinch of Kosher salt
1 cup Heinz 57 Baked Beans
2 medium scallions
3 oz spinach
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

1. Add oats, water and salt to a pan and bring to a boil.

2. Add 1/2 of the beans, lower to a simmer and cook for 10-12 minutes until oats are nearly done.

3. Add nutritional yeast, then spinach in batches and cook until spinach is wilted.

4. Serve in two bowls and top with remaining beans and scallion slices.
5. Marvel at the non-faces your The Husband makes as you scoff your bowl down and satisfy the fever.

I certainly enjoyed it.  This bowl survived 3 whole minutes.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

What I Ate Wednesday: 2011-10-05

Today's WIAW is brought to you by the letter "Inelegant Photography" and by the number "Trader Joe's"...

Breakfast of Champions!

Morning Snack
Evidence of Spud

  • Chili Mac over 4 oz baked potato (STARCH!), some nutritional yeast and some non-dairy sour cream for whimsy.

Still Lunch.  These were awesome!!! :)
  • (The Most Delicious) Grapes (e-vah!)
And then the afternoon snackage began!
Tea, Seaweed Salad and Mixed Oshinko
(Pickled Daikon and Veg)
GG Bran Crispbread with a Clementine
Trader Joe's Apple Cranberry Bran Muffin
Trader Joe's Whole Grain Hard Pretzel Sticks

(And I may have had a few more grapes)

Magnificent Dinner

  • Baked Falafel a la Appetite for Reduction
  • Greek Green Beans a la recipe I saw once
  • Half cup Quinoa with some red/green peppers in

  • Highly Enjoyable Desert
    • Trader Joe's Swiss Chocolate
    • Strawberries
    • Almond milk with a splash of Pumpkin Coffee
    I enjoy these adventures.  I track my food every day, but to see it all in one go makes me realize... wow, I eat a lot! ^_^;  However, looking at these... it was a good food day, I was not vaguely disappointed, and I still had chickpeas somehow!