Monday, February 20, 2012

4 Weeks Till Freedom

It's that part of the quarter again... crunch time. I feel like all of grad school so far has been a constant uphill battle. I'm trying to maintain a healthy balance, but, man is it hard!!! Unfortunately, running has been taking kind of a back burner lately with me averaging 2-3 runs/week of about 3-4 miles each. Not too impressive, but it is what it is. Do any of you have problems keeping your mileage up if you aren't training for anything specific? I know I do... and I haven't found any good races to train for yet that aren't WAY to expensive because I waited too long... Womp womp.

In other healthy news, last week I kicked my own butt in gear and signed back up for My Fitness Pal and can now report that I'm down 5.2lbs and have tracked for a whole week! I'm kind of skeptical about it being really 5.2lbs since I don't remember if my original weigh in was RIGHT when I woke up last Monday, but I know for a fact that I've at least lost 2.7lbs as I weighed in at 170.5 a few days later and at 167.8 this morning! :)

Jon went out of town for the weekend, so I took that chance to start doing the 30 Day Shred. I'd started (and abandoned) it once before, but this time I'm in it to win it. So far, I've just completed Day 4 and BOY am I still sore. But, that means I'm changing right?

As far as eating this week, I have two recipes from Kelly's Healthified Kitchen on tap that I HIGHLY recommend:
Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole (might add spinach?)
Honey Lime Enchiladas
I've made both recipes before and they're delicious. :)

Anyway, have a great Monday!!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Morning Life Saver: Breakfast Pockets

To get back into the swing of things, here's a new favorite recipe Jon and I have been making in 2012. Our friend Amber tipped us off to this great idea, and, with a few healthy modifications, we've been making batches weekly or bi-weekly and freezing them. They're so good that we have been eating these for breakfast every single day. We even heat them up on weekends instead of our Sunday pancakes!

Anyway, here's the base recipe, based off the original that can be found here.

  • 1 1/2 tblsp yeast
  • 1/2 c warm water (110 degrees)
  • 3/4 c skim milk (110 degrees)
  • 1/2 c apple sauce (with a tiny splash of oil)
  • 1/4 c sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 1/2 c flour (Approx. half wheat/half all-purpose)
    Base Filling Starter (we also add whatever veggies we feel like)
  • 1 lb bulk sausage, or some bacon, or ham... whatever meat you want (or no meat too)
  • 1 c onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 c frozen hashbrown potatoes, thawed
  • Half container of egg beaters (equiv. 7 eggs)
  • 3 tblsp milk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 c cheddar cheese, shredded
  1. In a bowl, dissolve yeast in the water.
  2. Add milk, oil/applesauce, sugar, egg, salt, and 2 cups flour; beat until smooth.
  3. Add enough flour until it makes a soft dough but do not knead. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  4. Filling:
  5. Cook the meat  and onion over medium heat until browned. Drain. Add whatever veggies you want. We usually do spinach, mushroom, pepper, etc. Then add hashbrowns, eggs, milk, and spices. Cook and stir until set. Sprinkle with cheese and keep warm.
  6. Assembling the pockets:
  7. Preheat oven to 350°.
  8. Punch down the dough and cut into 16 equal pieces.
  9. Roll each piece into 7 in circle on a floured surface (Note: I don't have a rolling pin, so I just try and stretch it with my hands... Less pretty, but seems to work just fine!). Top with 1/3 c filling, fold, and pinch shut. Bake for 15-20 minutes. 
 Our first attempt getting ready to go in the oven.
Future attempts have been prettier. ;)
    To freeze:
  1. Allow to cool on the baking sheet. Once cooled, place in the freezer until frozen. Store in a ziploc bag in the freezer for 3-6 months. To reheat, the original suggests you place it on a paper towel and microwave for 1 1/2-2 minutes. To get a crispier pocket, Jon and I throw them in the oven when we get up (without waiting for the oven to preheat to 350ยบ again) and then go about our business getting ready for 30 or so minutes and then grab them on the way out the door nice and warm and crispy. You can also speed up the oven process by putting them in the microwave for 30-45 seconds first. 

DELICIOUS and infinitely customizable.  The first time we made them it was kind of an ordeal in our tiny kitchen—a little messy, but each time we make them, they get a little bit easier. Plus, they seem to be catching—we've already passed this recipe out to a bunch of our friends who now love them too! Enjoy!

PS- They're relatively cheap too! Without meat they run about $0.76 per pocket and around $1 with! :)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Missed me?

So, I haven't written since Thanksgiving. That's kind of embarrassing. Like a lot of health bloggers, my time away also kind of coincided with a departure from being super healthy. As the name of the blog states, while I was away, I've done a lot of eating and reading, but not so much running. I believe my miles to date for 2012 is 19, with 6 of them bring from today and yesterday. I'm a wimp in the cold as far as running its concerned, and I'm afraid to run in the dark alone, so winter has been tough as a runner. Excuses, excuses, I know. I see plenty of runners running in much harsher conditions, I just need to suck it up.

Also, this quarter has had me stressed out from day one, so I've felt like I've been playing catch up since classes started, which isn't a good feeling. Honestly, in the past few weeks, there have been quite a few moments where I've asked myself if grad school really is for me, but, so far, I'm gritting my teeth and sticking it out. Not sure what else I'd do—and I'm sure quitting would make me feel like I've let myself down, even if it's turning out to be something different than I expected (not sure why I expected anything different though!).

Otherwise, the end of 2011 and the beginning of 2012 have been great. I've tried a ton of new recipes like eggbeater breakfast pockets, homemade bread, pizza balls, and homemade red velvet brownies that put the red velvet cupcakes I made for Jon's birthday to shame. I also got a new slow cooker for Christmas, so it and I have been getting to know one another.

Unfortunately, a mix of lame excuses for not running and stress baking have combined on my hips in the form of 5 pounds, so my clothes are fitting tighter... Not good. I've  needed new jeans for awhile now, but I refuse to go shopping for them till my current jeans fit more comfortably again. I'm convinced that's how weight creeps up on you—gain a little, buy new clothes where you just barely need the next size up, they feel good... cycle repeats.

Anyway, I'm back now and am slowly trying to hop back on the bandwagon.