Wrapping Up the Paleo Challenge

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So here’s the thing. My 30-day Paleo challenge ended a week ago and I am struggling to write a recap post.

Why? Close to the end of the challenge I was still following some of the Paleo rules but not all of them (I missed my oatmeal and milk) so it wasn’t Paleo eating anymore and I didn’t feel guilty.

Since I don’t feel like I can call it Paleo eating and it was more a high-protein/no sugar/no gluten kind of diet, I don’t think it’s fair to attribute my results to a Paleo lifestyle. I’m an analytics kind of person and I feel as though those small cheats in the 30 days make it so I can’t say with 100% confidence if anything I felt or noticed was from the challenge.

Knowing that, here are my results/thoughts from my almost-paleo challenge

  • Pounds lost: 2
  • Waist inches lost: 3/4 of an inch
  • Thoughts: again my analytics mind is questioning things: did I weigh and measure myself at the same time of day? how much water or salt did I have the last few days? There are too many factors to say that I even lost pounds or inches
Moving on to the “soft” evidence (I do better with this)
  • the first two weeks were tough. No alcohol combined with a ski trip made it super challenging
  • I also felt lethargic and low energy the first few weeks
  • My cravings for sweets went away fairly quickly
  • The last two weeks were a breeze. Around the half way point, everything clicked. I was used to making modifications to meals I love and I felt high energy
  • I was told by a few people that I looked great and they asked if I had lost weight (I hadn’t told them about the challenge)
  • I felt like I had more energy during my workouts. I did run a faster 10km race than what I was expecting and I am lifting more

Would I do it again? Probably. I enjoyed how I felt during the challenge, even with the few slips. I will probably even continue with some of the habits, including less gluten in my diet and more protein.

[Race Recap] Glencoe Ice Breaker 10km

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Yesterday I ran my first race of the year, the Glencoe Ice Breaker 10km. This is one of the first races you can run in the new year since the snow here tends to stick around until April, making for less than ideal racing conditions. Last year I ran the Ice Breaker and woke up to about half a foot of fresh snow. The race was awful with people slipping all over the place, so this year the first thing I did was check out side for snow and all was clear! phew. The temperature was perfect for running at a mild 3 degrees celcius and completely dry pavement.

Race time was 9am so I set my alarm for 7:15 and had my usual pre-race breakfast of oatmeal BUT I’m still doing my Paleo Challenge so I made a bowl of Oatless Oats instead. I think I’m one of the few people who likes to eat a lot before a race. Let’s be honest, I just eat a lot always.
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1/4 cup ground walnuts & pecans
2 tbsp ground flax
1/4 egg whites
1/8 cup almond milk
– mix and heat in microwave for 1 and a half minutes

add in
1 mashed banana
1 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp cinnamon

The race start was a 5 min drive away so we left at 8:20 and were warming up by 8:30. The warm up before a race always flies by for me and before we knew it, it was time to head to the start line.

The start was a mass start since the race was small with only 600 participants, so I had a great starting position and started strong. My mum volunteered this year and was calling out times at the 1-mile out marker so I had pre-planned that I would pace myself at a 7:30 minute-mile. I came around the corner and heard her yelling 6 minutes and 30 seconds….ummm yikes. Way too fast!! I slowed down my pace a bit, bit my tongue as people passed, telling myself there is no point in burning out after 2 kms. The rest of the race felt great and I paced myself really well.

At the 5km point I hit a time of 22:30 which was right on track for my goal of 45-46 minutes. I started to fade around the 8km marker but saw my mum again at the 1-mile left point and she let me know that I was running strong and was at a time of 38:30 so far. That was exactly what I needed so I picked up the pace a tiny bit.

The best part was that not only did my mum volunteer, but so did my sister and dad and they were running the finish line. When I was within 20 meters-ish I could see them (and Bill since he already finished) cheering me on and I sprinted to the finish line with every ounce of energy I had left.

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Final clock time: 45:12

My favorite part about this race is the brunch they serve afterwards and the great draw prizes. I chowed down and even snagged a draw prize of organic shower products. Not bad. Next year the prize of a bike is mine. I can smell it…jk

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What I Ate Wednesday: A Green Dinner For You

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Well it looks like it’s Wednesday again so time for another edition of What I ate Wednesday (insert theme music here)

Since I have been a bit MIA on the posting the last few days and if you look two posts below you will see last weeks edition, I thought I’d spare you the nitty gritty and show you one last great green recipe for March. I made this for lunch on the weekend, then dinner, then dinner the next day.

Spinach + Peas + Onion + Avocado Curry 
(if anyone has a better name, please let me know. I suck at making up recipe names)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup frozen spinach
  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/4 onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 TBSP curry paste
  • 1 TBSP coconut oil

Directions

  1. Heat coconut oil in a fry pan on medium
  2. Once the oil is melted, add the onion and garlic
  3. Meanwhile, thaw the spinach in the microwave for approx. 4 min
  4. Once the onion and garlic are fragrant, about 5 min of cooking, add the peas and spinach
  5. Stir in the curry paste
  6. Heat through for about 5 minutes
  7. Top with avocado
Done. Bam. Delicious.
This is the brand of curry paste that I like. It is the by far the best that I have tried.

Now if you feel jipped on my WIAW post here is a quick and dirty overview of my eats, which pretty much stay the same every single day.

Breakfast – “oatless” oats
Snack – apple + almonds
Lunch – Big green salad + pitted dates
Snack – carrots + pepperoni stick
Dessert – avocado pudding

Happy Wednesday!


I’m Back

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But where did  I go you ask? No where. Absolutely no where my friends. I have been getting super busy at work which has caused a wee bit of stress, so I decided to take some time to unplug. But alas, I missed blogging (yeah yeah it was only a few days) but I still missed it.

So what was I doing in the meantime…

….building a new coffee table. Well actually Bill was building a table, I just helped/stained. Plans were found here.

training for a 10km race next weekend. Next weekend??? Yikes when did that happen

Wednesday – Ran to work. 6km each way
Friday – Speed work. 3 x 1 mile with 3 min rest
Sunday – 11 km light run

….making some summer yummy healthy comfort food, which also show how weird I am that I think spinach can be comfort food.

…..and buying a personal house cleaner. His name is Roomba. Best. Purchase. Ever.

I hope you have had a great few days as well!

What I Ate Wednesday – Going Green

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Another Wednesday, another round of What I Ate Wednesday.

My favorite part about writing these posts is realizing it’s Wednesday so it’s half way through the week. I have been super busy at work lately (can you tell by my absentee posts??), so time is flying by at lightning speed. My company is also moving to a new building so I have been packing everything up and taking home all of the junk that I have accumulated at work over 4+ years. Some of the goods include: 2 yoga mats, 1 exercise band and 1 set of runners. hmmm I’m sensing a theme here. And no, I do not work at a gym, quite the opposite actually.

Alright, enough with those ramblings. Here is what I ate with my attempt at actually adding some greens this week.

BreakfastOatless Oats with frozen spinach added
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Snack – Apple

Lunch – Salad + Almonds on the side

Snack - Carrots + a meatball (unpictured)

I bought a few pre-cooked meatballs at the market close to my office. I stash them in the fridge at work and they are a great pick me up in the afternoon. Delicious!

Dinner – Homemade hamburger + spinach salad + leftover cooked cabbage
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You know when you have some leftovers in your fridge that just aren’t great but you don’t have the heart to throw away food? Well that is the cooked cabbage. I made it in the slow cooker and it isn’t fantastic but I just can’t bear to throw it away.

Snack – Almond Butter + Pitted Dates

Hope you have a great wednesday!!

St Patty’s Day Turkey + A Cooking Class

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Is it already Monday evening? Yikes. Time flew by today which is just how things have been for the last few days for me. This weekend was a bit of a mash up for me, mixed with salty beef, turkey dinner, work, a cooking class, running and CrosFit. Told you it was random.

St. Patty’s Day

Saturday started out with an 11km run followed by some work and cleaning up. For St. Patty’s day a few friends of ours are from Eastern Canada and they celebrate St. Patty’s day with salty beef and turkey dinner. Salty beef is exactly what it sounds like :)

Cooking Class
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On Sunday, Bill (aka my husband – I feel weird calling him “the husband”) took a Middle Eastern cooking class. We bought a Dealfind a few months ago for a cooking class and we finally signed up for the class. In the end I’d call it more of a cooking demonstration since the chef just cooked a few dishes while we all watched. We did get to enjoy the food afterwards which was the best part.

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Weekly Workout Review

Monday – CrossFit
Tuesday – Bike to work
Wednesday – Bike + CrossFit
Thursday – Bike
Friday – CrossFit
Saturday – 11km Run
Sunday – CrossFit

Hope everyone else had a fun-filled weekend and St. Patty’s day.

[Recipe] Coconut Lemon Mini Muffins

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Well that wraps up my first week/three days of biking into work. I like to ease into it so I drove on Monday and Friday, just to give my legs a break. If the weather stays warm (doubtful) and the roads stay dry (also doubtful), then hopefully I’ll be biking full time by next week!

Have any fun plans for the weekend? I have a cooking class on Sunday, which I’m quite excited for. Maybe my cooking will become less random/thrown together. Before I sign off, I’ll leave you with a recipe for the weekend.

I’m kind of obsessed with miniature muffins lately. I don’t know if its because I love that you can have 2-3 of them at a time or if it’s because I prefer using my new mini-muffin trays versus the old-gross-hand-me-down regular size muffin trays, but I am definitely addicted to them. I’ve made a few variations but the coconut lemon ones are by far my favorite. Enjoy!

Lemon Coconut Flour Muffins

Ingredients (18 mini-muffins)

  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp coconut flakes, unsweetened
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • Splash of coconut milk if mixture is too thick
  • Stevia (optional)

Instructions

preheat oven to 375F

mix all dry ingredients together (coconut flour, flakes and baking powder)

mix in eggs

add lemon juice and stevia

scoop 1 into a muffin pan

bake 20-30 minutes depending on the size of the muffin tray and until top is browned

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