Sunday, February 20, 2011

the week in review & its lesson

The past week was ... pretty good. I didn't reach any of my goals from last week (I didn't hit the gym at least four times, only two; I didn't wear my heart rate monitor once, because I still haven't found it; the closest I came to waking up at 5 a.m. -- regardless of my intention to go the gym -- was the morning I got out of bed at 5:55. "Yay! Still the 5 o'clock hour!").

The thing that makes this all kinda OK is that the weekend was great. Seriously.

Patrick and I, as I mentioned earlier, rode our bikes up a mountain and made our first trip to a Star City Brewers Guild meeting. We met a ton of great people who brew beer. Additionally? The food spread included a lot of healthy options (I ate fresh greens, hummus, tabouli, flat bread and some spinach dip). And, AND ... how many different versions of homemade lifestyle did I hear about? Among them: compost worms in someone's house, homemade kimchi, other folks' versions of beer breads, home-cured ham, homegrown mushrooms, hop gardens. This group meets once a month and I expect I'll learn something new about beer and about scratchmade living at every meeting.

So that was how amazing Saturday was.

Sunday was pretty great, too: a hike halfway along Tinker Ridge; homemaking an Italian loaf, granola bars*, granola cereal; and a delicious dinner of that fresh bread, toasted and accompanied by sliced pear, tomato, roquefort, fresh mozzarella and honey.

Are you f*cking kidding me? The weekend could not have gotten much better. And it's one I want to replicate again and again. I want a bike ride every weekend, a hike, homemaking, and good tasty nutritious eating.

Is this some version of spring fever?

this is the tasty italian, made by patrick. i'm so glad we finally started making all the bread we eat ... so simple and yet such a feeling of accomplishment. below? the bread mid-mix, and a little saazie-face to get you all "awwww"-y. (this is what we see anytime we're in the kitchen: her trying to be as close to us as possible without getting in the way. ok, sometimes getting in the way.)

In any case, as good as the weekend was, I still want to take some notes from my less-than-stellar week ...

the lessons

1. I need to seriously cut the sugar out. And I need to give credit to my fruit & oat bowls for satisfying my sweet tooth.

I was pretty go-go-go all week ... until Friday.

I've tried to bring a certain tradition into the workplace (which I borrowed from Patrick's old job in Knoxville): #coffeefriday; celebrate payday with coffee and breakfast! It's brilliant and important and something to look forward to every two weeks.

In past weeks I've brought in homemade scones and biscotti, a co-worker brought donuts another week, and yet another everyone contributed to oatmeal breakfast (bringing spices, oats, fruit, coconut, etc.)

This week? I brought in some delectable treats from Bread Craft, a sweet little shop serving up European-style goods. I highly recommend it, and I will eat there on into the future (their salads are tasty, their sandwiches hearty, their cheese is housemade!).

But between my coffee Friday morning and my ginger scone from Bread Craft, I turned crabby instantly. And then I ate another pastry in the afternoon (danish).

I knew what was happening, but I was not able/willing to fight it. I knew that sugar is no good for me first thing in the morning (or in that quantity, or unaccompanied by protein and fiber). But I picked up the scone and ate it. I knew that the reason I wanted the second pastry was because I'd eaten the first. But I ate the second pastry.

I'm going to challenge myself this week: I'm going to limit my cane-sugar intake to the little amount that's included in my newly homemade granola-bar-squares (one ounce of granola square has about 0.1 ounce of sugar) and bittersweet chocolate. Otherwise, I'm going to look to fruit to satisfy my sweet tooth, or to forgo a sweet when I would otherwise indulge the craving.

What I hope to see is a week of me feeling full of energy and ready to take on all the challenges that await me.

here's a nonsugar dessert I enjoyed earlier in the week: chopped pear, plain old-fashioned oats, malted barley, semisweet chocolate & honey. it was delicious and it's the kind of thing i plan to reach for whenever i think "sweet!"

2. I absolutely must have all my morning stuffs prepped if I want to get my ass successfully and energetically to the gym. I lost my keys last week. Also, I have no idea where my heart rate monitor is. Some mornings my lunch wasn't ready and when as I was going to bed all I could think about was how rushed I was going to feel trying to fit in a trip to the gym, getting ready for work, eating breakfast and making my lunch. I'm pretty sure that anxiety kept me in bed some mornings.

So I want to remove all simple obstacles. I aim to have: my gym clothes folded and ready for me, my keys stored alongside them, my iPod full and charged, my lunch made.

I'll limit my goals to these two, but I think of them as very small, integral cogs in a very big machine. I hope to be running more smoothly one week from today.

* The recipe for granola bars (shown above cut into about 2-point portions) is from America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. I recommend just about anything that this behemoth food brand creates (Cook's Illustrated, Cook's Country, the America's Test Kitchen PBS show, Their business model is built around being only mildly open source, so to speak. I'll respect that and post a recipe for the granola bars only after I've tweaked it enough to feel like I can call it my own.


  1. Hey Lindsay! I just wanted to say it was great meeting you this weekend and I'm really enjoying your blog! I think we can share a lot of info between gym going, weight watchers and cooking! I mostly just blog about my knitting and sometimes my cooking but I'm a full on weight watchers member and part time gym mouse (not quite to rat level yet!).:)

  2. I *love* "gym mouse" ... that describes me pretty well, too.

    I had no idea we share a Weight Watchers membership! My philosophy is generally eat whatever I want in moderation. I'm also interested in experimenting with spices to up the flavor in my foods (and possibly keep me from craving the cream & fat that goes such a long way to make food tasty).

    Maybe we can share some recipes and motivation ...

  3. Wonderful post, glad to hear you had such a great weekend. I would definitely say you have Spring Fever.

  4. Thank you, miss lady. First time ever for my spring fever. I LOVE IT.

  5. I've got the same philosophy. I have a hard time with the meetings because everyone always looks for the 'low fat' 'low calorie' frankenfood so they can eat more for fewer points. I'd rather eat less Real food for more points. It's much more satisfying! I'm always up for new recipe ideas and when I stumble across anything super tasty I'll be sure to let you know!

  6. That loaf has some amazing slashes! I wish! I even own a lame and I still can't score dough to save my life.

  7. That was all Patrick! He's started making our breads, which would have made me a little jealous two months ago, except that I realized he does it better ... and I far prefer to have tasty bread than own the bread baker title.