Wednesday, November 12, 2014

working on the engine

"A carbon bike, carbon cranks, carbon pedals and carbon bottle cages will make the bike lighter and faster but the cheaper and easier way to make it lighter and faster is to NOT eat the cheeseburger!"
-- unknown on
It's too bad nobody told this person that cheeseburgers are delicious!  But yeah.. so one of my main focuses going into Ironman is nutrition.  As someone who is already anticipating the flirt with cutoff times, getting leaner will certainly contribute to my speed (not necessarily a 1:1 ratio, but less weight to carry around, more aerodynamic, less energy spent supplying extra fat with oxygen, etc).  So, I've enlisted the help of a nutritionist, and am happy to say that I am off to a good start:
Since the beginning of summer...slow and steady wins the race!
It's really just been the little things: choosing better snack options, ordering in food less, you know the drill.
Road trip snack plan: mine on top, Jon's on the bottom :-)
One small hiccup to my big "I'm gonna cook all my meals now" plan is that my stove broke over the summer.  And I didn't bother to do anything about it.  This wasn't 100% due to laziness (well, maybe 80% lazy), but it seems that my appliances are all the originals from when the house was built in the late 1970's, and they don't make any the same size anymore (d'oh!).  When I finally got around to calling a handyman (last week), a 15 minute conversation suddenly turned into me agreeing to a $35K remodeling job - Yikes! 
The new layout design!
So anyway, no stove [until early Spring] means that I have to get creative with how I make and prepare food.  Luckily the microwave, toaster oven and slow cooker are all fully operational.  Also, I don't do complicated.  Hell, I barely follow a recipe.  For this effort to be sustainable for me, I need simple and fast.  Buying produce is a wasted effort in my house as half of it gets tossed in the garbage when it goes bad after a few days.  So, I stocked up on a bunch of canned goods (black beans, diced tomatoes, salsa, marinara sauce) and frozen veggies (broccoli, corn, peppers) and got to work:
Southwestern chicken in the pot and ready to cook!
  • "Southwestern Chicken" - yum, this is absolutely my new favorite.  Throw chicken breasts into the slow cooker and cover with salsa.  Add in beans, tomatoes, corn.  Low for 8 hours, take a couple forks to the meat and wah-lah, shredded chicken!  I throw it on a tortilla and add cheese.  Done.
  • Breakfast Burritos [for dinner] - and all-time favorite that I've kind of given up for breakfasts b/c of my effort to not buy food at work.  I add tomatoes and peppers to the egg and "cook" it in the microwave.  Then I heat up some tempeh "bacon" strips in the toaster oven and combine it all on a tortilla with cheese.  Delicious.
  • Cheese Tortellini - super easy when you buy frozen tortellini, but the catch was the lack of stove.  So, I bought one of those microwave pasta cooker thingies.  Throw on some marinara sauce and you've got the quickest dinner known to man, even if you have to wait an extra 3 minutes to cook some broccoli for the side.
My nutritionist - Rebecca - gave me a goal of 12 more pounds by the end of the year.  That's going to get tricky with the holidays coming pie? pumpkin roll? cookies?  Yes please!  (all in moderation, Jen, all in moderation)  Wish me luck... game on.

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