What time do you eat dinner? + great new dinner ideas

So Chris and I were driving home at around 5:45 and I asked him what time he would like to have dinner…and he told me 8.  Which is what led me to this post and made me realize I wanted to see what life is like at other people’s houses.

I love my husband very much but the one thing we are pretty different about is food.  As in he naturally eats like a bird where I eat more like a dinosaur. I swear he could go an entire day without eating.  Even on days where he runs 7 miles, he never gets hungry (I admit I could be exaggerating…he probably gets hungry… but for the sake of this post, humor me).  Now me, if I get hungry and there are no plans for food in the near future it’s not a good situation…picture a crazed animal on the attack. And it’s frustrating sometimes to not be on the same page.

Needless to say, I like to come home and eat my dinner right away.

I typically eat my standard protein shake breakfast at 7:30.

Today’s included blueberries, watermelon, spinach, peanut flour, protein powder and almond milk

And I follow that up with a snack at around 10:30/11, lunch after my workout around 1 or 2 and some sort of light snack around 4 or 5 with dinner preferably at 6 or 6:30.  But the problem is that Chris never wants to eat before 7.  For the most part, this is because he’s not hungry but I think this also has to do with “work style.”  He likes to come home and do tasks – walk the dog, work in the yard, misc chores etc and then relax where I prefer to relax, eat, and then do my tasks.  They say opposites attract right?  :)  Oh and let me also clarify that I am not some 50’s version June Cleaver who always does exactly what my man likes.  There are definitely days where we eat earlier or compromise.  Like today when we landed on 7:30.  Equal opportunity household here :)

Typically to get me through I end up having to eat a snack.  Like today:

Not the best choice but at least it wasn’t a bunch of chips.   Even though I ate that I’m still hungry but at least it’s manageable.  Plus I’ll head into the kitchen pretty soon to start working on dinner…penne rosa pasta with shrimp.  I seriously cannot wait.

Speaking of waiting…do you remember the movie, Can’t Hardly Wait?  I loved that movie when I was in high school and ended up watching it this morning while I ran on the treadmill.  I’ve totally gotten into a new favorite routine.  I dial up a movie on HBO on my ipad and watch it while cranking out 30-60 minutes of easy jogging.  Today I went for 60!  That’s the longest I’ve run in who knows when.  My knee only slightly started to hurt at the end and didn’t bug me at all once I got off.  I think my body is telling me it does not like hills and that all the hilly runs around my house contribute to my knee pain more than I thought. I also went to a pilates reformer class at lunch time.

All around great workout to kick off the week.

Now it’s your turn.  Tell me about your typical food eating routine. 

What time do you guys eat dinner? 

Do you have to work around the needs of other people in our house? 

Any tips for how to not be starving after work?

Oh and last thing – wanted to pass along this awesome collection of recipes my friend Amanda sent me.  How good do some of these look?

I will definitely be trying some of these out in the next few weeks so be on the lookout.  You can also check out my Pinterest Board for new healthy recipe ideas too.

Have a great night/good morning.

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Black, Blue & Delicious + I need a new book

It’s going to be a hot one today. We’re talking 97 degrees which rarely happens here. There’s even an extreme weather advisory. Yikes. Hope I don’t melt :) And I can already tell I’m going to need some serious sunscreen because by 7:30 we had our living room fan turned on (PS we have no AC…tonight’s gonna be fun). Chris was way better than me and got up and went for a run while I opted for some leisurely breakfast eating while listening/watching Great American’s Country. Ahhhhh Saturday’s.

And I know right now you’re just dying to know what I had for breakfast so I won’t keep you in suspense any longer.

Black & Blue Protein Smoothie

  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 cup frozen blackberries
  • 1/4 cup protein plus peanut flour
  • 1/2 scoop Designer Whey French Vanilla protein powder
  • 1 cup (ish) spinach
  • 1 teaspoon psyllilum husk powder (fiber)
  • 1 teaspoon raw maca (energy/hormone balancing)
  • 1.5 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk

Nutritional stats:

Next I was going to tell you about last night’s delicious stir-fry dinner but Chris got back and asked me if I wanted to go for a walk with he and Chance. How could I say no to that? :) And then after our 20 minute (already steamy walk) I was already in my running clothes so I decided to pop out an easy 2 miler on the treadmill. Done and done!

And now we’re off to float the river. Can’t wait to see what kind of craziness we see out there.

But before I leave you I need some help. Tomorrow I’m planning on spending some leisurely time reading a book in the shade except that I have no book :( I polished off Night Circus (so good!) during last night’s spin-bike cardio session. I’m looking for a good “beachy” type read. You know, a little summertime easy reading. Maybe with a love story thrown in?

Any recommendations?

Note – apparently this post didn’t post this morning.  We’re now back from 7 hours on the river in 100 degree weather and I did not get burned anywhere!  That makes me really happy because I always seem to miss spots with my sunscreen.  Today I applied my SPF 30 about 30 times and while I was made fun of a few times I’m glad I did.  Gotta protect your skin :)

If you give a mouse a cookie…

He’s going to want a glass of milk*

Except we’re not talking mice and baked goods.  We’re talking about these guys:

How beautiful is that strawberry???  I came home after work to water my plants and saw that my strawberries had finally popped.  Woo hoo!  There is just something about growing your own food in your own backyard that makes you feel good.  Like, “I did that thank-you-very-much.” Plus, it feels like a sign of summer.  June strawberries = summertime.

And what did I do promptly after seeing said berry?

Ate it.  Duh.  But like I mentioned earlier, if you give a mouse lady a cookie strawberry, she’s going to start craving a strawberry smoothie :)  Which is exactly what I made.

Strawberry Cheesecake Protein Smoothie

  • 6-8 fresh strawberries (I wish I could say these came from my garden but we’re not quite there in.  These came from the organic section of Fred Meyer)
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar-free, fat-free cheesecake pudding mix
  • 6-8 ice cubes

And the outtake:

Delicious.

We’re meeting some friends for dinner at Matador which is my favorite mexican restaurant and I wanted to make sure I didn’t go there starving. Did you know a protein smoothie makes a great post-work, pre-dinner snack?  My smoothie was around 200 calories with 12 grams of protein and approx 6 grams of fiber. Much better than a handful of chips.

What about you?  Do you eat a snack before dinner?  Even though I usually have something around 3-4 I always want to eat something right when I get home.  Sometimes it’s just because I’m home and eating something after a crazy day at work relaxes me and then sometimes it is genuine hunger.  This is a big area for me to work on.  Eat when I’m hungry instead of eating because I like being snacky.

Luckily, today was true and honest hunger.  Probably because I got my boo-tay kicked this afternoon at spin & sculpt.  Spin & sculpt is a class just like it sounds – 30 minutes of a spin class plus 30 minutes of sculpting (HIIT workouts – 60 seconds at a variety of stations).  I used to go to the class pretty regularly, at least twice a week, but the sculpt tends to bug my knee depending on what we’re doing.  But now since I’m not running Hood to Coast I’m a little less concerned about how my knees feel.  I’m sure a doctor would never agree with that advice but too bad (for now).

Anyway, spin was crazy.  Lots and lots of intervals in and out of the saddle.  I actually thought I was going to puke at the end.  And then we started the sculpt portion which looked like this:

Run up, around, and back down the gym stairs.  repeat the circuit.  Finish with abs, including a side raise toe touch thing that I’d never done but love (and can’t find an example of anywhere so at some point I should just make a video) along with a 30 second plank where I was the only person in class who was able to take it to the next level and raise one leg.  Thank you pilates.

And now I’m actually off to foam roll my legs so that I can walk tomorrow.  Happy almost Friday my friends.

* Please tell me you all have read and love, “If you give a mouse a cookie.”  It is probably my favorite children’s book.  That, and “Love you forever.” 

Do not try this at home

This morning I woke up and wanted protein pancakes which I’ve made many, many times.  Except I make them with cottage cheese and we don’t have any cottage cheese.  So I proceeded to make up a random recipe.  Um yeah, don’t try these.  Unless you like a weird, mushy-filled, good-smelling pancake.

Don’t try at home protein pancakes:
Makes 4-5

  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 cup oats
  • 4 tablespoons almond milk
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour (pretty sure this is the culprit for the grossness.  Every time I use coconut flour whatever I’m making is not good.  You think I would learn my lesson by now right?)
  • 2 tablespoons water

But they just smelled so good so I ate them anyway with peanut butter (courtesy of my foodie penpal),  and honey. Side note – Right now Luke Bryan is on TV singing “Drunk on you” and one of the lines is about a drip of honey.

PS if you want good protein pancake recipes, I’d head over to Peanut Butter Fingers and check out Julie’s recipes.  They look amazing.

I completed my breakfast with a mug of coffee + almond milk and a blueberry smoothie sans protein powder.  I feel good that I no longer have any fake food in there but I’ll warn you that these take some getting use to.  Little sour since it’s non-fat, plain greek yogurt.  I put some honey and cinnamon in there this morning and it was much better than earlier versions.

Blueberry Smoothie:
Makes 2 16 oz glasses

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 2 cups spinach (today was a mix of spinach and kale)
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 cup organic non-fat milk
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seed
  • 1 & 1/2 cups non-fat, plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • dash of cinnamon

As it’s currently 10:40 I need to start pulling myself together.  I’m thinking a 3.5 mile run (although my knee is feeling a little iffy) or 45 min on the spin bike.  We have a wedding to go to at 2:30 so I don’t have a whole lot of time to be lazy today.

Last night we grabbed drinks (I only had 1 glass of wine – go me) with some friends who are in town for the wedding from the Netherlands.  It was great to catch up with them and I’m excited we get to spend more time with them tonight.

And before that we had dinner:

Strawberry salad

And chicken penne pasta (minus kale)

Yesterday’s workout was a good one – a pilates reformer class plus 15 min on the elliptical (alternating between leaves 7 and 10) and 15 min on the treadmill at an 8:30 pace…so a little over 1.5 miles.  I’m going to try and get back into more of a 3 day a week pilates routine.  I’d been pretty consistent before my physical therapist told me to quit and in the time I took off I definitely noticed a change in my body.  Pilates really helps to keep my muscles long and lean and since I wasn’t doing that, instead doing more weights, I felt like I was getting a little too bulky.  Especially my arms.  So for the next couple weeks I’m going to try a pure pilates reformer/cardio mix and see what happens.  I’ll keep you posted.

Wow, I feel like I’ve written a novel and I still have one more thing to get though.  I wanted to let you know about this challenge that Powercakes is doing.  For the month of June, she’s challenging you to focus on clean eating, with a new meal/food to try each day.  Yesterday was “eat a rainbow” which actually was harder than I thought.  Today is to eat something red so I’m thinking yogurt and berries will be in my future later.  Let me know if you guys are up for trying it.  I’ll post what I eat on here for ideas but I think it’s a pretty cool concept.

Eat a rainbow

And I’m out. Finally.  Hope you all have good weekends.

 

Thank you Jillian

So Tuesday night I did Jillian Michaels’ killer buns and thighs.  I’ve done that DVD a couple of times, usually level 1 so I switched it up and tried level 2.  It was definitely harder – hello 1 legged squats! and then there were a couple lunge combos I couldn’t do because of my knees so I did some squat leg lifts instead.  I finished the DVD, went about my business and thought I would be ok.  And I was until halfway through the day yesterday when I got up from my desk and could barely walk.  My buns were on fire!  It was like all the sudden that entire workout hit me.  I hobbled to the gym and struggled doing any sort of leg workout because mine were so tight.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  I love it when I feel sore after a workout, I just didn’t expect to be that sore after that DVD.  I was pretty jazzed. I love a good leg workout so I’m going to add that DVD to my regular mix and make sure I do at least level 2, maybe 3 if I’m feeling crazy.  If you haven’t done any of Jillian’s workout DVDs I highly recommend them.  I honestly think that if I didn’t have access to a gym I could do a couple of her DVDs a day and be in the same or better shape then I am now.  Plus they’re only around $10 a pop which is always nice.

Because my legs were on fire, yesterday’s workout was a little random.  I warmed up with 15 min on the rowing machine and then worked my way through some machines.  I was planning on doing chest/triceps but I was having so much fun on the machines that I ended up doing an overall upper body workout.

3 sets of 12 reps at a challenging weight

  • Bench Press
  • Incline bench press
  • Seated chest fly
  • Lateral raise
  • Tricep pull down
  • Lat pull down

And then I headed into the small studio to attempt some jump roping.  After what felt like a million years looking at all the ropes to try to figure out which one would work for me, I took one jump and realized the ceiling was too low  – Doh!  So that didn’t work.  The other studio has a higher ceiling so maybe one day I’ll head over there.

Instead, I jumped rope without a rope.  I alternated about a minute of “jump roping” with a minute of abs.  I ran though of couple of my favorites from here.  I did that whole thing about 5 times.  I ended with some planks and stretching and called it a day.

In the eats department, my breakfast yesterday was a smoothie with spinach from our yard.  It was the standard PB/blueberry recipe (1 cup blueberries, 2 cups spinach, 2 cups milk, 1/4 cup peanut flour, 1 cup greek yogurt) but I felt like it just tasted better because the veggies were grown by me.

My pre-workout snack was cold coconut oatmeal minus the honey.  The other day I’d made oatmeal with the intention of warming it up later but didn’t have time and just ate it cold.  Turns out I love it!  Who knew?  I want to play around with the recipe and try adding in some protein powder or something to see if I can bulk it up a little bit better.  I’m excited about the prospect of this though.  I really haven’t been able to get into the whole “overnight oats” craze but apparently I’m all over cooked oatmeal cold.

Lunch was another protein smoothie…I didn’t take a picture or write down the recipe.  Sorry.  And dinner was leftover pizza and a salad.  So freaking good.

I went to the gym this morning and seriously kicked my butt.  It was by far my best workout of the week and if I thought my buns were sore before, I can only imagine the pain I’ll be in tomorrow. But alas work calls so you’ll have to wait until tomorrow for the recap :)

Question for today – Is anyone else out there a fan of Jillian Michaels’ DVDs?  Are there any other great at home work-outs I should be trying?

Have a great Thursday.  You only have one more day until Friday.