Monday, November 18, 2013

Sunday Meal Prep

Yesterday I was feeling ambitious and decided to pre-make some meals for this week. Okay, not every single meal, but I got a head-start on my lunches, which tends to be the meal I throw together last-minute every day. 

I chopped up a head of green leaf lettuce and cooked a couple chicken breasts and added it to some onion, mushrooms, carrots, feta cheese, almond slivers, and part of a Good Seasons dry Italian dressing packet. The dry dressing mix is great because it adds some flavor without me having to worry about packing a separate container for dressing to add to my salad during lunchtime. I also chopped up a couple of Roma tomatoes, but I won't add those in until the mornings when I actually pack my lunch, so there's not as much moisture hanging out in my salad making my lettuce soggy. 

Along with the salad, I cut up an apple and a banana to go along with my breakfast this morning. 

I also blended up the dry mix for my morning protein shake. I mixed up 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder, a teaspoon or so of cinnamon, and a teaspoon or so of dry butterscotch pudding mix. This morning I added some milk to it and shook it up before drinking it.

For me, preparing ahead for the upcoming week is somewhat hit-and-miss. I'd really like to be one of those people who makes almost everything for the week on a prep day, so eventually I'll get to that point. Until then, I'm happy that I at least did something! 

I hope you have a fantastic week this week!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Go-To Breakfast

All summer long I loved drinking a smoothie for breakfast. It was relatively easy to throw ingredients in a blender and my smoothies usually tasted great. I had time to chop up fruits and time to clean the blender. Since school started, I don't think I've made more than one or two smoothies for breakfast, mainly because I don't have as much time anymore to spend prepping or cleaning with the smoothie process. Excuses, excuses, I know! Along with practicality issues, I'm also just not in the mood for a smoothie since it's gotten colder here. Instead of an ice-cold drink for breakfast, I want something warm and comforting for those chilly mornings when I'm making breakfast at 6:30. So lately I've been gravitating toward oatmeal! 

Oatmeal is super-fast to make. Just put some oats in a bowl with some liquid and microwave for 90 seconds or so and you have a bowl of warm, creamy goodness. 

I used to think that oatmeal was bland and gross, but then I started playing around with different add-ins that take the flavor up about ten notches. Lately I've become obsessed with almond butter (just like every other healthy living blogger out there), so that's been the flavor base of my oatmeal. Here's the recipe for this morning's breakfast:

-2/3 C rolled oats
-1 C almond milk
-2 spoonfuls almond butter (probably about 3-4 tsp)
-1 Tbsp brown sugar
-1 tsp mapleine
-1 Stevia packet 

Combine all ingredients, microwave, stir up a little, and enjoy!

Do you have a favorite add-in for your oatmeal? 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Simple Sweet Potato Wrap

Yesterday started out great when I actually got to sleep in! It seems like this entire fall I've had things going on almost every Saturday morning, so I haven't gotten the chance to sleep in very much. For me, sleeping in is at its best when I don't have anything to set an alarm for, and I'm able to wake up whenever my body pleases. So yesterday was quite nice!

After waking up, I went for a little 4-mile run on the Eagle section of the Boise greenbelt. If you're ever in the area, I highly recommend going for a run or even a walk on it, especially during the fall. This part of the greenbelt isn't really paved, so it feels somewhat like trail running. Right now the changing leaves on the trees are beautiful.

I've been doing P90X for the past few weeks, which I intend to keep doing, but I'd like to start incorporating some more runs into my workout schedule. I realized this week that I really miss running! Since daylight savings happened, it's not really an option for me to run most evenings, since it's already dark by the time I'm done teaching piano. Luckily, I do have a couple days in the week that I can fit a run in, so I'm going to start doing that more. I'm really enjoying the strength aspect of P90X, but I miss running as my form of cardio.

By the time I got back from my run, it was lunchtime, so I threw together some vegetables put them in a wheat tortilla. It turned out pretty well! Here's the recipe:

1 medium sweet potato
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/4 C red onion
1 large carrot,chopped
3 T corn
1-2 T garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
grated parmesan cheese

1. Peel sweet potato and chop into medium-sized pieces
2. Put chopped sweet potato into a tupperware with a little bit of water and steam in the microwave for about 2 minutes, or until somewhat soft (they don't need to be totally cooked at this point)
3. After sweet potato is done, steam chopped carrot as well (same as the sweet potatoes, they don't need to be totally cooked - this just speeds up the cooking process)
4. Spray a medium-sized skillet with non-stick spray and put on the stove on medium to high heat
5. Add vegetables, garlic powder, salt and pepper and saute for 5-10 minutes or until sweet potatoes and carrots are as soft as you would like them

6. Serve in a whole-wheat tortilla and top with parmesan cheese. Wrap your tortilla up however you choose!

Makes enough to fill 2 tortillas

I think that overall it doesn't matter a ton how you combine vegetables. Sure, some combinations taste better than others, but you're pretty safe in cooking and serving a bunch of vegetables together. My go-to quick lunch or dinner usually involves some combination of veggies thrown together in a pan with some seasonings, and it usually turns out decently!

What is your favorite combination of vegetable to eat?