Sunday, January 26, 2014

So THAT'S why

As I was doing my 6 miles outside yesterday with the first two miles having frozen snotsicles and the last four a continuously running nose, I thought to myself how much easier it is to prepare for a fall race than a spring one. And someone at Runner's World apparently shares my views:

This totally is true, as I registered for the Lincoln Half at 1:30 a.m. on January 1. I bet I was not the only one who was less than sober when registering!

Oh well, week three is in the record books. Something interesting I'm learning about my body is how energized and great I feel after a shorter run (3 or 4 miles), but how kinda crappy I feel after the longer ones. I need to do some reading and figure that out. Anyone know enough physiology to help me out here?

Okay, onto some food!

We went to Lalibela on Friday night, our favorite Ethiopian restaurant here in town. And we are now considered regulars! Our waitress asked if we wanted the combo platter, because the cook had started to prepare it as soon as she saw us walk in. And she came out and greeted us. We're not sure if she's the owner also, but she prepares all the food and it is so good!

This is HUGE - plenty for both of us

And then last night we were invited to some friends new house for dinner. They are avid antique collectors, and the table looked incredible.

I wish I would have taken pictures of some of the items in the house. Trudy has a yarn cabinet that I am  almost literally drooling over. My yarn is stuffed in baskets and Rubbermaid tubs, but hers is in an old-fashioned cabinet from the yarn section of a general store. OMG. And she only knits scarves!!! Not that there's anything wrong with that.... While we're on the subject of knitting, guess what I taught myself to make this winter?!

There were a lot of ends to weave in here!

All are big enough to hold a bottle of wine - although Brody might need a few years before he tests this

Okay, enough patting myself on the back! Back to food. Some breakfasts:

Lunch pictures are non-existent because they are still the worst meals for me to plan. One blog that I started reading, 100 Days of Real Food, has photos of her kids' lunches every day, so I may be inspired to start packing one for me, even though I usually eat at home.

Snack pictures - also non-existent. My afternoon snacks consist of a package of Skinny Pop popcorn. Tastes great and 100 calories - what's not to love?

Went to Costco: shredded chicken, roasted peppers and potatoes, sauteed asparagus

Steaks, more sauteed asparagus, red cabbage

Sausage soup

This sausage soup is so good that you need the recipe. It's from my friend Nancy, and I've made it twice this winter. I know I used more veggies than the recipe calls for. Here ya go:

1 1/2 lb sweet Italian sausage (could use chicken Italian, but I didn't)
1/2 cup chopped onion (I chopped up one small onion)
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 T chopped parsley
8 cups chicken broth
1 bay leaf
3/4 cup sliced carrots
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper (I chopped up a whole one)
2 cups crushed canned tomatoes and juice (1 16 oz can)
1 (16 oz) can Great Northern beans, drained
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans 
1/2-3/4 tsp dried basil
1/2 cup orzo OR 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
salt and pepper

Cook sausage, drain. When the sausage is about half done, I throw in the onions, celery, and carrots to let them cook a bit. When the sausage is done, add all the other ingredients except the beans and orzo (or quinoa). Cook covered for 15 minutes. Stir in orzo (quinoa), salt and pepper. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Add beans. [I found the orzo gets a little mushy the next day, so I like the quinoa, but personal preference. If you like mushy orzo, I won't judge.]

Serves 6 - HUGE SERVINGS! I figured out the calorie count: for 1/6 of the recipe, it is 484. For a more modest 1 cup serving, it is 242. 

It is really, really cold here, but unlike most of our out-of-town family, we have no snow. Knocking on wood as I type this. 

Because if you are, there is one cure for breakfast:

Enjoy! Stay warm, and talk to you soon!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Catching up

Today is the two year anniversary of my first actual blog post. (I actually wrote a blurb January 15, 2012 to explain WHY I was doing this), but the first rumination was two years ago today. And I obviously have decreased in frequency, from several times a week to a few times a month. Sometimes less.

I thought I would change things up a bit, namely the title of the blog. I changed it from Showing Up to Cathy Shows Up. I like the three-word title better, and it matches the already existing URL. The title is based on the Woody Allen quote that 80% of life is showing up, so I'm trying to show up a bit on this little corner of the blog world - but mostly I just like to write and this is an outlet for me. And if you've been reading it for awhile, thanks for hanging in there and putting up with me!

So what has happened these past few years? Major life events! Two of these:

August 25, 2012
August 10, 2013

Two of these:

October 2012 and 2013

One of these:

March 2013
One of these:

December 16, 2013 - happy one-month birthday, Brody!

So since I've started writing this blog, I've become a mother-in-law two times over (love you, Aly and Tim!), a two-time half-marathoner (and training for the third this spring), the Inventory Specialist at Hot Mama, a wonderful shop new to Omaha, and a grandma to the most beautiful baby in the history of babies, as Jeanie said! (Or as his grandpa says pretty much every day, "What a doll!")

I know I've digressed a bit from the main focus of Showing Up (or Cathy Shows Up), which began as a healthy living blog. It still is, but it's MY healthy living blog. Thanks for being along for the ride.

As part of that focus, here is a fabulous new recipe. It's from Skinnytaste, a blog that Aly told me about several years ago. She told me then that even if I don't use any recipes to just look at the pictures because they are food porn. While the pictures are gorgeous, the recipes are healthful and delicious. She's writing a cookbook - can't wait till it's published. Anyway, I made the Roasted Potatoes, Chicken Sausage, and Peppers last night, and it may have been because we were both so hungry, but we kept saying how wonderful it is. And as a plus - really easy!

What's not to love - a big pan of roasted veggies and chicken Italian sausage!

And for breakfast today, an old standby - MaryLu's protein waffle. This keeps me full forever.

An ongoing healthy habit I am trying to keep up with is water intake. I think I'm getting enough, but when I actually use the WaterMinder app I find out I'm short. Another healthy habit that I'm trying to incorporate is to make sure I get fruits and/or veggies with each meal. I'm pretty good about that, but to be honest, sometimes lunch is a protein shake and a granola bar. I try to bring baby carrots to eat at work, so maybe that counts?

And on that note, time to go get organized before I head into work. TTFN!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

New year, new me, yada yada yada

I know the title of this post sounds cynical, but this picture made me laugh out loud so I wanted to use it  on the blog! And if you're my Facebook friend, you've seen it already. (Okay, I really love it!)

I really am using the new year as reinvention time, or rather, remembering my reinvention. I've been on this journey for quite awhile, but after eating tons of sugar, drinking, and not exercising most of December, I need a reminder. So to help me along, on New Year's Eve I registered for the Lincoln Half Marathon along with 12,500 of my friends. They upped the number of spots by 2500 and still sold out by noon on New Year's Day. This despite opening registration at 12:01 a.m. on 1/1/14. I know I was in no shape to fill out that form at 1:30 a.m. (bet I wasn't alone in that), and when I woke up the next morning I checked to make sure I hadn't registered for the full by mistake. That would have been a major error!

I'm glad I did sign up, though, since it will make me train for it instead of just thinking "Oh, I guess I should go work out." And for this race, I have a goal time in mind, other than to just finish. I know I can do 13.1 since I have completed two halfs (halves?). I may share my finish time goal the closer it gets to May 4th. Or I may not. We'll see how it goes. I'll be using the same training program as in the past, with a few modifications. The plan calls for two short runs and one long run each week, but I'm going to add in a day of speed work - mostly because I want to say the word fartlek. I am also planning on weight training Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays, and a day of cross-training (bike). It sounds like a lot, but it still give me two rest days so I think it will be fine. I had planned on doing all that last summer and fall (minus the speed training) but I kept forgetting not wanting to. It's like that old saying, "If you keep on doing the same thing, don't expect the results to be any different." Or something like that. I just figure I need to change things up a bit.

And then there's the other saying, "You can't out-train poor nutrition." It seems like the trend in healthy living now is not all diet and deprivation, but rather listening to your body and trying to eat like a normal person. For me, that still means using My Fitness Pal as a food and exercise diary - because for me, it helps to be held somewhat accountable. And I just like lists. I am not making any big changes on the food front, other than cutting back on all the crap. Over the past few years, I have tried to eat "lean, clean, and green", some days with more success than others. A few things I've picked up on in reading lately is to not eat anything that wasn't a food 100 years ago, don't eat anything that doesn't have a mom or been grown in the ground (think about it), and nothing with names you can't pronounce in the ingredient list. Basically - cut back on the processed food. So that is my main goal.

Another goal for the upcoming year is changing how I think about ME. Every single issue of every single magazine directed at women is about making yourself thinner, firmer, and sexier. I am so over it. Not even the models are as perfect as they seem (hello, Photoshop!) I am 58 years old, in pretty good shape, have a husband who loves me and still wants me (kids, sorry about the TMI), have three wonderful children who are all in happy relationships, have the most beautiful grandbaby EVER, and I still feel like that fat weird kid in high school. I really am working on this whole self-image thing. So I would like to propose a toast (if I wasn't cutting back on my alcohol consumption - notice I didn't say eliminating). It's a simple one:  Here's to 2014; healthy and happy!