Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Let's talk about FOOD, baby!

This is a blog topic I NEVER in a million years thought I would address.  In fact my first day with my trainer last year I said, "I will NEVER change my food, don't want to talk about it."  Luckily Rachel realized I was 1) super stubborn, 2) addicted to lucky charms and cherry coke and 3) dedicated and smart.   After my marathon I started thinking about nutrition and got a couple books including the Runner's World Cookbook and also a Nutrition for Triathletes book.  I don't eat terribly and I don't like to think about what I eat but I felt that my stomach/digestive system really failed me during the marathon and I wanted to start looking into it.  

My goal for the New Year was to start making an effort to change and be smarter about what I was eating in order to fuel my training properly.  Prior to the January I quit my cherry coke habit, only giving myself treats at the movies or once a week.  Wow was that hard, and apparently I am the only one in my building drinking it because they took it out of the soda machine!  My vacation to DR was the last time I had caffeinated soda until today, oh today.  My vendor took me out to lunch and we went to BRGR to get burgers and sweet potato fries and a Barqs root beer.  That's right after making such an effort to eat better today I decided sure I deserve a treat, hey a burger is protein and that is what I'm working to increase anyway.  Rationalization, it is a beautiful thing my friends.

Flash forward to 2 hours later and I was tired not not tired, EXHAUSTED, sluggish, miserable.  I did not equate it back to lunch I just figured it was a result of my late night up crafting my sister's shower invites.  I headed to the gym for my training session after downing a bag of peanuts for some protein/ kick in the butt, ok and my bag of skinny pop ( I LOVE IT).  After two rounds of a TOUGH work out I started feeling super nauseous as though I could throw up right there, even light headed and very over heated.  I had to cancel my planned swim because I felt I was so tired/feeling off I felt the swim wouldn't be beneficial.

Talking with Rachel I realized the only thing that was different today was my lunch, my juicy yummy burger, french fries and my root beer.  It was NOT worth it my friends and it screwed up my entire workout plan.  Now the work out I did today was really hard but I should have done better and been able to move straight to swimming.  No more jumping off the better eating bandwagon, especially on a planned double work out day.   When I say better eating I'm not talking a fad diet, clean eating, paleo, carb free, or any of the million other options.  I mean just thinking, taking a minute to plan more fresh fruits and vegetables, adding in protein more often and just making better choices, oh and still having my snack pack pudding for dessert at lunch!

Some Recipe Ideas:

Make Ahead Eggs (I have two of these for breakfast every morning)
PreHeat oven to 350 degrees and spray baking spray in all the cups of a muffin tray
-Crack an egg into each of the cups and add other ingredients as desired, bake for 15 minutes
(I have added ground beefs, green peppers, cheddar cheese, spinach...get creative! I recommend large eggs so they fill the cups but have enough space for add ins)
-Store in a tupperware for about a week or until they smell weird.

Quick N Creamy Chicken Lasagna Makes 12 servings  Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
15 Oven Ready rippled styled lasagna noodles (two 8oz boxes)
4 cups shredded cooked chicken       1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
12 oz cream cheese softended             1/2 cup chicken broth
4 cups marinara sauce (I used an entire jar of meat pasta sauce)    4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Adjust oven rack to the lower middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Put 2 quarts of hot tap water in a 13"x9" baking dish and add noodles soaking for 10 minutes or until soft.  Drain and put the noodles aside.

Combine the shredded chicken with basil, 8 ounces of cream cheese and 1/4 cup of broth.  In a small bowl, mix the remaining 4 oz of cream cheese with the rest of the 3/4 cup of broth.

To assemble, smear 1/4 cup of the sauce on the bottom of the baking dish, then assemble 4 layers in the following order: 3 lassagna noodles, pasta sauce, 1 cup of chicken filling, 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, and 2 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese.  Once assembled, top the lassagna with remaining three noodles, the cream cheese broth mixture, 3/4 cup of mozarella and 1/4 cup parmesan.

Cover the lasagna with foil coated with cooking spray.  Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until bubbly throughout.  Leaving the lasagna on the same rack, turn the oven to broil.  Remove the foil and broil for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the lasagna is spotty brown.  Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes then cut into squares.

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