Thursday, October 11, 2012

6 weeks!

So did you know......I LOVE fall!  The colors, the cooler temps, the apples, pumpkins, hay rides - LOVE IT!  It is the reason I live in and for the Midwest!  Autumn definitely doesn't stick around long enough in my opinion.  They changed daylight savings time....can't we all agree to make fall last like, oh I don't know - 6 months?

No I suppose not. 

Anyway, this IS the danger zone for me! Anyone else? 

I am one of those people that associates great memories of family and friends with some type of calorie laden comfort food.

So if I am missing family....I want to eat.
If I am bummed about my plantar fascitis ....I want to eat.
If I want to create some awesome memories with the kiddies...I want to EAT!

easy with the attitude kiddies
See the trend?

So I gave myself a good shaking, told myself to get back to working out --- even if that means I can't do what I WANT to do (read 100 burpees) and just do what I can, because IT IS better than nothing.

Did my feet hurt?  Yes.
Did I stop this time when they did? Yes
But did I give up? NO!

I moved on! I adjusted! I found something similar and maybe not as high impact, but continued to challenge my body.

"healthafied betty crocker fav - apple coffee cake love"

It would be so much easier to just eat coffee cake a couple of times a day with a hot cup of chai tea and watch the leaves change on the trees.

But actually sticking with it and giving my body a workout makes me feel SO MUCH better!

I mentioned before how much a plan made a difference (fitmixer boot camp I still love you!), and I realized yesterday that as of today we only 6 weeks away from Thanksgiving and the obstacle course of food madness, temptations and potential pitfalls at every gathering that follows, and I NEED to be prepared.

6 weeks?  Perfect for a challenge:

#operationpantsfit because the only muffin top I want is pumpkin-flavored \\ life + running \\

Calee!  Thank you! This is something I can get on board with!

My weight loss journey is far from over and I cannot head into the holidays with bad eating habits and a lack of workout discipline.

me + healthy = happy kids

Time to tighten the belt!  Ha!

So what am I going to do these next 6 weeks?  The same thing we always do pinky..., I guess not take OVER the world, just get MY world in check. 

Still, taking over the WORLD always seemed more awesome ;)  So the same "formula", tried and true:

1.  Count Calories
2.  Work out at least 30 minutes - 5 days a week.  With a 6th day - fun focused activity.
3.  More vegetables, less carbs, more protein.
4.  Try some healthier recipes showcasing fall flavors. 

Like this lentil soup, a mostly almost Isa recipe from her A4R cookbook! A must have in your kitchen.  Mmm, mmmm  good!

Golden Lentil Soup

1 med yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp sea salt
fresh ground pepper, to taste
2 ribs celery, diced
1 c carrots, diced
1 med zucchini, diced
1 cup red lentils
6 c veggie broth

Saute onion about 5 minutes in a pot over medium heat.  Use nonstick cooking spray or broth if needed.  Add garlic, thyme, pepper, salt and saute another minute.

Add celery, carrots, zucchini, lentils, veggie broth, and mix to combine. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower to a simmer and cook 45 minutes, until the lentils and veggies are very tender, and the soup has thickened.

Let sit 10 minutes, then serve! Love the consistency this soup and bursting with flavor.  Now that's good comfort food.

So what are you doing the next 6 weeks?

Monday, October 1, 2012

More Maize!

Helloooo readers!

Today's recipe has been inspired and brought to you by the rhythmic beat of the cowbell.  'Cause you can never have enough cowbell!

This cracks me up every time!

Being of Latina heritage, or maybe just because my family is so musical, I am VERY familiar with the cowbell.

Yes, I can play a mean cowbell, thank you very much.

And though I missed playing up national Hispanic heritage month - sorry my peeps - the lovely Heather has given me the opportunity to share some recipes by so very timely calling up Hominy as the latest on:

Lucky for me I had recently been craving Hominy and have a recipe to contribute!
I call it, More Maize Soup!
A little lesson first: What is Hominy?
Hominy consists of dried maize kernels  Maize (play /ˈmz/ MAYZ; from Spanish: maíz after Taíno mahiz), known in many English-speaking countries as corn, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. (thanks Wiki!)

Our family pronounce it Mahiz, Taino style.  Relevant, why?  Because this started as Tortilla Soup (an Isa recipe - highly recommended) - and since it called for corn tortillas (or tortilla chips), my brain - thanks to the persistence of my abuelos when I was a kid - translated it to Sopa de tortillas de maíz .  Which made me think of Maize, which made me think - this soup needs MORE Maize aka Hominy!
Yes my brain is a tangled web of random thoughts.
So this:
Isa's tortilla soup
Made up of these ingredients:
Quickly turned to this!
More Maize Soup!

And just like you can never have too much cowbell - I truly believe you can't have too much Maize in your bowl! 
Anyone note the third type of maize in the bowl? 
Yes!  That's right - good old yellow corn.
Heavenly Maize goodness.
You can have some too!
More Maize Soup
1 tsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp cumin powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp red pepper flakes
32 oz diced roasted tomatoes
24 oz vegetable broth
2 cups tortilla chips (plus extra for garnish or for scooping!!)
15 oz pinto beans, drained and rinsed if from can
1 cup frozen corn
juice from 1 lime
15 oz hominy, canned
1/2 c chopped fresh cilantro (plus extra for garnish)
Saute onions, pepper in oil over medium high heat until translucent.  Add spices and saute for another minute.  Add broth and tomatoes.  Break up tortilla chips and add to pot.  Cover and bring to boil.

When boiling, add beans, hominy, corn and cilantro.  Simmer for 5 minutes.
Add lime juice and serve!  Garnish with crumbled tortilla chips and cilantro.  Serve!

Now back to that cowbell.....;)