Weekend Recap

I didn’t actually do a whole lot of out-of-the-ordinary food prep this weekend, so I’ll spare you the pictures of hard-boiled eggs and cut up celery.

You’re welcome.

I did come up with a new recipe for a pretty tasty pizza though! I struggled with a name for it, but for now I’ve dubbed it the Almost Perfect Pizza. Almost because, although it’s tasty, the crust is very thin so it’s a little difficult to eat. Kind of like a healthy Sloppy Joe.  It only takes a few minutes to put together and less time than that in the oven, using things you probably already have on hand (even leftovers). So grab your bib and dig in!

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Almost Perfect Pizza

Don’t let the name put you off from making this one! The only thing this “pizza” lacks is in the neatness category. Kind of like a Sloppy Joe. I was gladly up to the task of attempting to eat it without losing any toppings and in the end just scooped up the stragglers with a fork. Okay, so I ate it with my fingers. Don’t judge.

Here’s what I used, but just like with any pizza, you can change up the toppings to make it your own:

1 Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Tortilla

1 Tbs. tomato paste

pinch of garlic powder

pinch of Italian seasoning

Toppings I used:

1/3 C sauteed red onion

1/3 C sauteed green pepper

5 sauteed Brussels sprouts (cut into halves or quarters depending on size)

2 oz. grilled chicken

1 oz. goat cheese

This pizza crust bakes quick which is why my toppings were precooked. I mainly pulled leftovers from the fridge and used what I had but the combination was great. Don’t be afraid to experiment: I would’ve never thought to put Brussels sprouts on a pizza but it really added to it!

Now, put it all together:

Place the tortilla on a pizza stone or non-stick cookie sheet. Spread with tomato paste and sprinkle on seasonings.

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Pile on the toppings of choice and then crumble the goat cheese on the top. This went into a 350 oven for about 10 minutes. Just make sure you watch it closely as the cooking time will depend on your toppings. (Note: if you’ve never cooked with goat cheese, don’t expect it to get melty and gooey like mozzarella. It won’t.)

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Serves: Just for you!

Cal 382/Carbs 44/Fat 12/Protein 26

Training Outside of the Zone

out of zone

Are you training within your individual heart rate zone? If so, you may not be getting the most out of your workout. First and foremost, let me say this: I am not a fitness expert or a personal trainer. I’m also, most definitely not a doctor, so if you’re not sure what your maximum heart rate is, you should consult an expert, especially if you’re new to regular exercise.

Secondly, everybody is different. You know your body better than anyone, what feels right and what doesn’t. Listen to it.

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s talk about what I had to go through to get the picture above. I was running. Training for my first full marathon to be exact. And I was in the middle of one of my best pace times this year, but I really wanted to post about the subject. First, I had to retrieve my cell phone from my arm pouch while on the go, albeit at a slower pace (about 147 HR). Then, I had to get the camera settings ready, all while still running because when you’re training, you really don’t want to stop. If that wasn’t already enough, I once again had to pick up the pace to bring my heart rate back up so I could demonstrate, and then pause just at the right moment to snap a clear enough picture. This is what I go through for you!

I tell you all this to (hopefully) better illustrate my point. Heart rates, when you take time to notice, fluctuate greatly, if not quickly. My heart rate, for example, can drop back to its almost resting state (in the lower 70’s) within a few minutes of reaching maximum when I come to a complete stop, thus the need for snapping a quick pic.

While I’m in the middle of a training run, my heart rate monitor–even though it’s a very good one–consistently tells me I’m training out of my zone. As in I’m training at a higher level. When I’m running at a good pace, I’m usually hovering between 160-170 range and sometimes even higher than that. But that’s okay because I know my maximum heart rate is actually somewhere around 180. And even though I’ve programed my maximum into my Polar monitor, it tells me my “zone” is between 117 and 153. I know that if I’m consistently running at 150 I’m not working nearly hard enough, and therefore not getting the  most out of my workout. That’s when I try to amp it up, if only for a few minutes at a time.

If I didn’t already know my personal maximum heart rate and glanced down to see my running rate was, say, 172, I would probably worry I was pushing for a coronary. As it is, I know I’m working. Hard, yes, but still well within my abilities. Having this information helps me know when I need to push myself and when I can let off.

Maximum heart rates depend on a number of things. If you Google it, you’ll likely find an infinite number of methods and opinions on the subject. According to a few calculations I tested, mine figured out to be 171, 177 and 172, while it was actually closer to the male calculation at a straight forward method of 220-age. So, how do you find out your personal maximum heart rate? I had my fitness and nutrition expert help me figure out mine. Basically, it’s based on a number of factors, including your age and gender. But a straightforward calculation like the one above may not take into account your individual fitness level. Also, as with anything, it likely fluctuates based on the activity you’re performing. If you’re serious about training and getting the most out of your exercise time, it’s an important number to know. No matter what method you choose, I urge you to find out yours!

A Week in Review

I’ve been away from my computer most of the week. Between work and training and my determination to stay on track with my healthy eating, time just gets away from me. So here I am, Saturday already, and realizing I need to post my weekend food prep from last week before I head out to the farmer’s market and grocery store to stock up on this week. (This all feels strangely like deja vu)

Perhaps I should just continue to recap at the end of each week and call it giving you all ideas for your own upcoming food prep.

In case you missed the “before” pic of all the food booty, here it is again:

Food prep Jun 9

I realize I probably should have taken an “after” pic once I had everything complete, but we’ll just call this a learning curve 🙂 This week, I spent more time prepping than I did actual cooking, but I still had plenty of go-to foods to snack on and throw together into recipes when I needed them throughout the week. Here’s what I ended up using all that food for:

Fruits and veggies washed, prepped and ready to use in snacks or recipes (including cutting if needed):

  • cucumbers
  • celery
  • cilantro
  • blueberries
  • apples
  • nectarines
  • mango
  • red potatoes
  • spring greens (organic pre-washed)

Snacks prepped:

  • Greek yogurt with blueberries (1/2 c plain Greek yogurt with 1/4 c blueberries in snack containers), just grab, add granola and go!
  • Low fat cottage cheese (1/2 c in individual containers)
  • 1 dozen hardboiled eggs

I also made some protein brownie bites (recipe coming soon!) and a batch of Paradise Pancakes, which are sooo yummy and went perfect with the coconut butter I’ve been wanting to try!

Well, that’s all for now. Time to head out to the store and see what I can come up with for next week! While I’m thinking of it, I love finding new ideas for healthy food prep and recipes to try. What are you’re favorite sites to find clean eating inspiration? If you have a site of your own, feel free to link in the comments as well; I’d love to hear from you!

Paradise Pancakes

I’ve been feeling very tropical lately. Last summer my husband and I took a trip to beautiful Jamaica and I’ve been daydreaming of the white beaches, blue waters and all the fresh fruit that was in abundance there. While these pancakes aren’t exactly a tropical paradise, they are pretty close. In short, AMAZING!

This recipe serves 2 people. Or, as I found out, one very hungry girl who just worked up a monster appetite on a long run 😉

1/4 C mango, mashed

1/2 banana, mashed

2 egg whites

1/2 C brown rice flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill)Image

1 tsp baking powder

1 Tbs. slivered almonds (optional)

1/4 C blueberries

2 tsp. coconut butter

In medium bowl, mash up banana and mango. Add in egg whites and mix until blended. In separate bowl, mix together brown rice flour, baking powder and almonds. Add dry ingredients to wet mixture and stir. You may need to add a Tbs. or two of milk (cow, soy, almond, coconut) or water to get desired consistency.

Pour pancake batter into hot skillet sprayed with a little cooking spray. This makes about 4 pancakes depending on size. When the cakes start to set up around the edges and bubbles form in the middle, drop a few blueberries onto  each pancake and flip, cooking until golden brown. A little coconut butter on top completes it! YUM!

Makes 2 Servings

Each serving: Calories 264/Carbs 45/Fat 6/Protein 10

Apple Shallot Salad Dressing

Another super simple salad dressing just by adding a few extra ingredients to your standard oil and vinegar combo!

Apple Shallot Dressing

1-2 tsp. shallot, very finely diced (you can also try to press it through a garlic press, but it seems to get stuck often so you have to work harder at it)

1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

1 tsp. honey

1 Tbs. oil (I use safflower, but you can try your favorite)

Whisk first 3 ingredients together, adding oil in last. Drizzle over your favorite greens.

Try this tossed with spring greens, saladdiced grilled chicken, sliced apple, walnut and a little feta cheese for a light tasting, fresh salad. I prefer a light hand when it comes to dressing up my salads, but if you like a little more, you can easily double this recipe.

 

 

1 Serving

Calories 141/carbs 5/fat 14/protein 0