Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Reason 857 why I'm not a food blogger

I love reading food blogs. Seriously, who doesn't? I want to see who ate what, where they ate it and if I would want to eat it too. I am not that creative with my food. Not one bit. I don't like taking a lot of time to prepare something that Kev won't eat or will be gone in 15 minutes. But I still love looking at other people's food, even if it makes me sad.

Note to self, don't peruse food blogs when you're unhappy with your lunch. Almond cheese isn't cheese and it doesn't melt into the the nice baked pasta dish you envision.

I took some pictures of breakfast over the last few days and i was struck by the amazing awesomeness of my choices. Let's break them down, shall we?

I think dairy is the root cause of my stomach issues. Dairy = pain. No dairy = happy. It's like how cave people learned to stop eating stuff that killed them. Gorg eats old meat and dies, no one eats old meat.

Back to my amazing breakfast, dairy is out and carbs are in! This is a hollowed out bagel, brought back from NYC, lovingly toasted. I've paired it with spray butter and a nice low sugar strawberry jelly. It's displayed on a bed of industrial paper towels with a plastic knife. Jealous yet? If not, this one is sure to push you over the edge.

Here we have an everything bagel thin (good shit! best bagel thin yet!) Paired with 3 strips of turkey bacon that have been microwaved. Oh yes, microwaved. A side of spray butter and TJ's not cream cheese. (The not cream cheese is NOT good. a rare TJ's fail. It looks like Crisco and doesn't have even a slight cream cheese flavor. So it kinda tasted like Crisco on a bagel thin. Gross) I've plated my food on a lovely Target plastic plate.

And that is reason #857 why I shouldn't be a food blogger.


Sunday, November 27, 2011

I do love an audience

My posts have been a little sparse as I prepared for my next class at work. By day I'm a corporate trainer and I impart my knowledge onto the eager masses. By night... Well, that's another post...

The majority of the time I spend training new hires for the sales department. The week before the class starts is super busy and I'm running around like crazy making sure I have everything I need and that I'm caught up on any and all recent process changes. This class was a little different and I had to prep for an entirely new to me curriculum.. In a very short period of time.

Being a trainer is completely different from what I expected. You have to win the class over AND take control of them in the first few minutes. If not, you lose control which is very bad as the weeks drag on and they don't respect you. Never a good combo.

I got a new group las Monday and they're I nothing like any of my previous groups. Which is I guess the case with every new group.

Any who, why do I do it? It's tough, people can be a pain and you have to constantly fight to keep control But you know what? I love an audience. I love standing in front of the group, winning them over and making them love me. I can be witty, make them laugh and make them awesome. I love seeing them being hugely successful and knowing I had a part of that. I'm waxing poetic here, probably because I'm tired and haven't seen a vegetable in 4 days and they gym in even longer. Love getting to see friends for the holidays but the lack of regular exercise is making me sappy. I need to go punch something..

Alright, regular blogging and the recap of a whirlwind northern trip to come soon!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Baking time!

It's time to get baking! This time of year I smoke enormous amounts of crack and participate in not one but three cookie exchanges. With it being just Kev and I, it makes complete sense to surround ourselves with ridiculous amounts of sweets.

Thursday is the first one and I'm trying to decide what to make. It's ror my sorority's alumnae association's cookie swap / clothing swap / cosmo drinking. Cookies, clothes and cosmos, 3 of my very most favorite things in the EVAH! We each need to bring 3 dozen cookies along with the recipe. We're working on putting together a cook book and selling them for a philantophy project but the recipes have to be homemade or passed down through your family. Thankfully the ONLY passed down recipes I have are sweets.

I was torn between 2 recipes. No-Bake cookies OR Grandma's Peanut Butter Balls. I was originally leaning towards the No-Bake cookies so I made a slightly altered batch.

I used Trader Joe's fiber cereal instead of oats, almond milk and Smart One margarine instead of butter. Meh, they're OK but I wouldn't use the cereal again. They got a little stale and the oats hold up better. In the end I decided to go with the Peanut Butter balls for the exchange, pix and recipe to come later!

But seriously, you should make these no-bakes, the right way. And give me one.

No Bake cookies
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup cocoa
1/2 cup of milk

Boil hard for 1 minute. (When you can't stir away the bubbles, wait a minute)
After it boils, take off the heat and mix in 1/2 cup peanut butter and 1 tsp vanilla. After it's all mixed in, add 3 cups of uncooked oatmeal.

Mix it all together and drop onto waxed paper.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Some times you have to eat the roast.

During college and right after, for probably about 7 years, I convinced myself that I shouldn't eat red meat. I didn't like the way it tasted and it was just gross. Please don't think that I'm some sort of angry vegetarian. Hells NO. I love me some meat.

I know why, my mother cooked meat exactly 1 way in the 80s, well done and covered in Kroger steak seasoning. Grey meat with orange seasoning. Several years later I realized that I love cow. Mooing, rare, (Pittsburgh rare YEAH!) cow on a plate. I hadn't yet come to that realization and adamantly swore off anything that resembled beef.

One day I started dating a new fella and was invited over to Sunday dinner. Big Italian family where Sunday dinner was the thing. I asked what they were having and he said, roast. WHAT! I don't eat red meat! Certainly not roast. bleck! I took my dilemma to several of my closest friends. New guy, wanna make a good impression on the parents but I don't eat red meat. What's a girl to do?

The answer? Some times you have to eat the roast. As long as you aren't morally or ethically opposed to the situation, sometimes, to keep the peace and to keep up appearances, you have to eat the roast.

We all have to do things that are unpleasant, hang out with people we don't want to or go to events that we'd rather not. In those cases, eat the roast.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

-ose Intollerant?

It's no news to anyone that I've been having stomach issues for a while now and there doesn't seem to be a rhyme or reason to what gives me trouble and what doesn't. Instead I've been eliminating things from my diet in  the hopes that one of them will bring some sort of relief.

Here are some things that cause unhappiness...
Almond Milk is friendlier
Oh I miss you... I really miss you. We were together for so very long before you were so abruptly ripped from my life..
And sometimes this
and even sometimes this

After many weeks of constant scolding encouragement from Kev, I sucked it up and went to the gastroenterologist. We talked about a bunch of different things and in the end he wanted to test me for everything and finally rule out some possibilities.

I started the first test yesterday. It's a hydrogen blow test to see if I have a fructose intolerance. I told him that sometimes I eat candy and it hurts my stomach. Seriously, it might not really be an issue. Perhaps I just shouldn't eat a lot of candy. I do love me some Skittles and it's OK that more than 10 give me a stomach ache. Bags of candy corn and Skittles (and those 100 calorie snack packs) contributed to a 50 pound weight gain. If my body actually learned something after a year of Jenny Craig, and that thing was to not eat and entire bag of candy, that should be OK. But I'm open and stuff to getting to the root cause so test we shall.

Have you ever taken one of these tests before? 12 hours before the test you can have nothing by mouth except water. 12 hours before that you can ONLY eat chicken, fish, white rice, eggs and chicken broth. That's it... Seriously. I may not last.. I was sick yesterday and didn't eat anything so taking the test this morning was no problem. But I have to do the lactose intolerance test tomorrow morning and this food isn't cutting it. I did come to the brilliant realization that since rice and fish are allowed, sushi must be ok!

I had a giant sashimi bowl for lunch and got some to go for dinner as well. Definitely love me some sushi but I'm so ready for a piece of chocolate or even 1 Skittle... an orange one I think...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Conquouring my fear of spinning

I wasn't really afraid of spinning as a class. I mean, it's not like the spin bikes are going to turn into gigantic metal monsters and eat your brain. No, I was more concerned with the soreness and potential damage that I could incur to my... shall we say this delicately, my lady nethers.. Well last week I put all of those fears and concerns aside and sucked it up and went to spin class.

I happen to own a pair of padded bike pants but did I wear them? Noooooo Why? Because I didn't want to be the newbie with a giant padded crotch. I'm badass, I should be able to handle 45 minutes of riding on a damn bike.

I loved it, class was awesome and I was super sweaty. My hooha hurt for 3 days. I'm going back Thursday and this time I'm bringing a padded seat.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Zumba, it's time for us to part

I want to like Zumba, I really really do. I've tried it several times but I don't know, it just feel like there's something missing.

At my gym there are several Zumba classes. one on Tuesday at 5:30pm, Thursday at 6:35 and Friday morning at 9:30am. I can only make the 5:30 class when I don't have a class. (I'm a corporate trainer and stuff) The 5:30 one I like, it's high impact and there are a lot of people there who want to work up a sweat. But I can't always go to that one. FAIL.

Thursday nights I've been to twice. I barely work up a sweat in that one because the instructor is soooo slow. She takes far too much time in between songs and spend the rest of the time rubbing her choochies and looking at herself in the mirror. (I think it's some sort of Latin dance) There are also 3 tiny old ladies who stand in my favorite spot and don't share. FAIL x2

Last Friday I was working a later schedule to bring knowledge to the nighttime peeps and decided to check out the 930am Zumba class. It looked a lot like this.

Except older.

More like this.

Can you say that you "raised the roof" with a bunch of octogenarians? I can, and that's something that I can keep with me forever.

So with this, I officially give up on Zumba. I really, really want you to be awesome but I just need more from you. It's not you, it's me. Really, it's me.


Friday, November 4, 2011

Is the 4th post too early to talk about chaffing?

I've been reading running blogs for a while now and I hear people talk about lubing up before a race. There's some sort of body glide that people swear by that prevents chaffing. I've never had a problem with it and never thought twice about the hows and whys of it all. Science says that when 2 thing rub together really really fast they heat up, that I understand. Why you need lube before a race, I don't. Until Sunday....

The only think that I can come up with is that I finally ran fast enough for my pudgy legs to rub together. I now know that chaffing happens at around a 10.47 minute mile. Since I want to get faster, I guss I'll need to better prepare for the inevitable... and wear pants.

Today I got an e-mail at work announcing the opening of a toll road. Totally BS, but to celebrate the opening they're having a 5K on the new road. It's bad enough that we have to pay to drive on it but we should pay to run on it too?

And for something completely random,

I have no idea why this won't rotate. Just turn your head and enjoy the chickie..

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Weekend recap part 2

Sunday I ran the Monster Dash 5k.

Let's back it up a little, I just started running this year, seriously, in April. I had never ran, not in my entire live, not as a kid, I cried every year when it was time for that damn Presidential Physical fitness challenge. (Thanks Regan). Never in college, ever. This year I decided that I wanted to learn how to run (yep, learn how to run) without feeling like my chest was going to explode. My brother runs marathons dammit, I can run 3.1 miles.

I bought the Couch to 5K app for my phone and started running on the treadmill. The first 5k I finished in 38 minutes (?) back in June and this last one in 32.47. That would be 10.47 minute miles thank you very much!

It was a pretty flat course, down a road and back. The best part was that this was a costume contest with categories for best sports figure, best TV character and best of all... Best Steve Prefontaine. I decided to go as Richard Simmons. Tank top, shorts, sneakers? Sounds like a good running outfit to me!

I should never have a perm, ever... What the hell was I thinking from 1983 - 1992? On the other hand, why the hell did my mother let me have a perm in the 3rd grade?

Back to the race, I definitely beat my last time, but I also got beat by a 70 year old man in Lederhosen and I almost passed a Ghostbuster. While lining up for the race Bob Ross stood next to me, 'fro paint palette and all. Happy little trees... awesome...

Kev had a good time too. There were free sandwiches and smoothies before the race began. Who eats a full sandwich before running? Probably that old dude in the Lederhosen, that's why he passed me.

I finished the races and almost immediately started coughing and sneezing. I spend the rest of the afternoon on the couch with some tissues. How do you catch a cold while running?? Seriously, how does that happen? Thankfully it cleared up by Monday morning just in time to go to work.

Rock on..

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Great weekend!

We had a crazy busy weekend! Kev had a concert with his vocal jazz group Friday evening and we headed out for drinks and late dinner afterwards. I wasn't terribly hungry and decided to drink my dinner instead. Mmmm cosmo... I ordered the sushi appetizer but ended up bringing home 3/4 of it.

Saturday morning started bright and early with a Body Combat class. There isn't usually a Saturday morning class but it was launch day! Woo Hoo! I love a launch day! Let me say, the new release is HARD on the arms. The instructor said there were over 1600 jabs alone in this release and most of them came in track 8. I believe it because my arms hurt for days..

I ran home, showered and finished getting ready for a cook-IN. I'm a member of the alumnae association for my college sorority and we have several events a month. We were supposed to have the annual cook-out in September but the weather was just gross and yucky. We moved it to October to try and get a nicer day. Well, Saturday was still pretty rainy and yucky so we had a cook-in. I made a ham, cooked with brown sugar and honey mustard and an awesome crock-pot chicken recipe.

Apple Cider Chicken
6 boneless chicken breasts
1 cup apple cider (I used Trader Joe's)
1 granny smith apple chopped
1/2 cup cranberries (I used dried)
salt, pepper and cinnamon to taste

Cook 6-8 hours in the crockpot and shred the chicken when it's done. Seriously one of the easiest recipes I've ever made and one of tastiest!

We had a lot of great crock pot recipes at the cook-in. If only I had remembered to take pictures....

Friday, October 28, 2011

My name is Lara and I love stripes.

I think that pretty much sums up my bio. I love stripes and peanut butter and all trash tv. OK, for real, I used to have another blog where I documented all things crafty. I loved my blog and the community, but one day I needed a break. I put away the crafting and reevaluated where I was and what I was doing. My eating habits weren't the best and I found myself in a pretty scary place on the scale. I was bagging up and donating favorite clothes, I was out of breath just climbing the stairs. Rings no longer fit and I was able to justify all of it in my mind. I was buying increasingly larger sizes because "the manufacturers were making things smaller" or "that store runs small".

I had promised myself a long time ago that I would never see a 2 as the first number on the scale and no amount of denial could change the fact that it was there. I had to make a change before I spent all of my 30s unhappy with my body. I have a wonderfully supportive husband who encouraged me every step of the way. Over the course of a year I lost 50 pounds on Jenny Craig. (WOO HOO!) I started exercising more and more and I conquered a long time fear / mental block around running. This year I've done 2 5ks and am working on increasing my mileage for even longer races.

I wanted to chronicle my maintenance and how to balance yummy food and exercise. I hope people read this one and I hope you enjoy!