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The Forgotten Vegetable

I so appreciate everyone who took the time to wish me congratulations on my second anniversary of blogging on Peanut Butter Runner. When I ask questions like, “tell me one thing that’s changed in your life over the last year,” it’s not just to illicit responses. I genuinely enjoy reading about the things that you are doing and some of your stories are incredibly inspiring…everything from having children to dealing with loss to making the decision to make healthy living a priority. I get so excited when the blog can become a place where we can all share with each other rather than me just blabbering away at you.

I feel like it’s been forever since I’ve updated you on what I’ve been eating and doing (in reality it’s been two days!). The first noteworthy thing to share with you is that I actually got dressed and went out to dinner on Sunday night with my team from work. I am so lucky to work with great people who I enjoy hanging out with outside of the gym!

It’s a little sad that it’s a blogworthy occasion when I where anything other than Lululemon. I was trying to think back to the last time I wore a skirt or dress and I believe it was Christmas Eve. Hopefully I can change that now that warm weather is here and sundresses become the norm.

The second thing I’d like to comment on is how insanely sore I am from Sunday’s WOD. Specifically, my butt thanks to the walking lunges we did while wearing a sandbag across our shoulders. Good lord! I could barely sit down yesterday. We were supposed to max out on squats, overhead press and deadlifts yesterday but there was no way that was happening for me. I’m going to attempt it today or tomorrow.

And here’s a look at what I’ve been eating as I’ve continued on my quest to eat clean and up my protein. I’m eight days in and feeling amazing.

Monday morning breakfast after a hot yoga class was strawberry banana oatmeal topped with Barney Butter.

1/3 cup Coach’s Oats
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup water
Heavy dose of cinnamon
Generous sprinkle of white chia seeds
Dried cranberries
1/2 banana, sliced thinly
A handful of strawberries, diced and stirred in at the end

Monday lunch was a salad with arugula mix, avocado, apple, carrots, leftover balsamic portobellos, goat cheese, grape tomatoes, pecans and dried cranberries with homemade honey dijon balsamic vinaigrette.

Dinner after teaching my Monday evening hot yoga class was simple and healthy. I roasted cauliflower with olive oil, kosher salt and a little bit of Dizzy Dust. I roasted the sweet potatoes with olive oil and a little bit of kosher salt and maple syrup. Finally, grilled chicken with Trader Joe’s Lemon Pepper and a sprinkle of Dizzy Dust. I am a huge fan of using rubs as a healthy way to add flavor to the foods I’m cooking. Also, can we take a second to appreciate cauliflower. I feel like it’s one of those vegetables that doesn’t get a lot of recognition but it’s so delicious…especially roasted! According to the Twitterverse, I also need to try it mashed. One of my friends Tweeted to me last night, “Cauliflower is to vegtables as honeydew is to fruit. Forgotten, but tasty.” and it’s so true! I’m guilty of forgetting about it too but I love it when I make it.

Cauliflower…love or hate? 

I was sore and tired so I opted to skip early morning yoga today in favor of an extra hour of sleep. Breakfast when I awoke was plain goat yogurt with banana, chia seeds, cinnamon, granola, strawberries and sunflower seed butter.

One last meal…today’s lunch was a delicious combination. I reheated some leftover brown rice and placed it on top of a bed of arugula mix. Then I sauteed a zucchini and some grape tomatoes and then scrambled an egg. I placed all that on top of the rice and then topped it off with diced avocado and a little bit of shredded goat cheddar. A pear on the side.

I’m off to power through the rest of a 12-hour workday while someone lives the good life. Jealous! 😉

Have a great day!

{ 40 comments… add one }
  • Rachel Nelson April 17, 2012, 4:02 pm

    Hi I am a new reader to your blog, but so far I absolutely love it! I was just wondering what it means to “eat clean” for you? I have been a vegetarian for almost 5 years and have been vegan periodically throughout, but being a freshman in college makes eating healthy difficult. I am going to try and re-vamp my diet this summer and was interesting in what other people have tried. Thanks!

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 4:45 pm

      hi rachel – eating clean for me is trying to focus on lean proteins, fruits, vegetables and healthy grains. i try to avoid processed foods and excessive sugar and caffeine. this is tough for me because i have a huge sweet tooth and crave sugar. recently, i’ve been trying to break the mentality that i need sweets after every meal and try to get more of the good stuff in instead. so far i have felt great and my energy levels have gone up. i think it’s good to try to create a balance of clean eating…aim for it 80-90% of the time but definitely enjoy splurges!

  • Carrie April 17, 2012, 5:01 pm

    I love how colorful your meals always are!

    I’m a big cauliflower fan…I LOVE it roasted. I mix up the seasonings I put on it…but it’s always delicious.

  • Rebecca April 17, 2012, 5:04 pm

    I love cauliflower, but I agree with your friend on the honeydew. Blech. The only fruit I don’t care to eat.

    I need to try the Barney Butter!

  • Danielle April 17, 2012, 5:05 pm

    I love your blog:) I am curious if you have ever done a post on how your husband finds a healthy balance/deals with you leading such a busy life….I want my husband to adopt some healthier habits and jump on board with working out in the evenings 🙂

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 4:46 pm

      hi danielle – i have not! great idea.

  • Matt @ The Athlete's Plate April 17, 2012, 6:02 pm

    LOVE roasted cauliflower!

  • Allison April 17, 2012, 6:02 pm

    Hey Jen, question for you. You mentioned that a lot of people at your gym are going paleo, and that you are supporting them but not really doing it yourself. Would you mind talking about why you like it/don’t like it/are choosing not to? I’m not into crossfit, but I’ve heard a lot about crossfitters (?) being into paleo, and you are my trusted go to for healthy living opinions. I’d just be curious to hear your take on the diet. Thanks girl!!

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 4:49 pm

      hi allison – i’m not going paleo because i believe in a balance of healthy foods. i don’t like diets that are focus on the elimination of foods. i will say that the paleo diet has encouraged me to add more fruits, veggies and lean protein in my diet rather than relying on carbs for fuel and that has made a huge difference in the way i feel.

      i might write a more in-depth post about it once i know a little more!

  • Brianna April 17, 2012, 6:24 pm

    I am always so jealous when I leave the house and my animals are in total relax mode! Congrats on 2 years here! 🙂

  • Trish April 17, 2012, 7:10 pm

    So proud of myself for my WOD this week – part of the conditioning routine was squat thrusters (I think thats what it’s called – squatting with the barbell and then standing up as you lift it over your head). With my trainer I did 53 lbs for 5 rounds, 7 reps each time, plus a few other exercises. These squat thrusters felt intimidating – I’ve never done them before with the barbel and weights. I was so happy that I completed the routine without breaking. It feels so great to have some upper body strength for the first time in my life.

    I love crossfit, I just can’t say enough good things about it. Oh, and I like cauliflower.

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 4:50 pm

      that is amazing trish! thrusters are so hard and a technical movement! way to go on getting it down. i love that crossfit allows you to do all of these new things. it’s so fun!

  • Bonnie April 17, 2012, 7:12 pm

    Jen! Congrats again on the 2 years – I loved reading your post of reflections and appreciate you sharing your life with us. I would have entered the great giveaway but I’m in Canada. 😉 I’ve never mentioned it before, but you are so beautiful and fit on the inside and out – I think it often enough I should tell you already!

    Cauliflower: hate. Although I saw on Dr. Oz that if you dip in just a bit of sugar water it changes the taste completely! A slight dunking would be worth me eating it. 😀 Great work on the clean eating too! Have a wonderful (and hopefully relaxing) night – you are one busy woman!

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:34 pm

      bonnie – thank you so much for your kind comment. you are too sweet and it means a lot to me that you took the time to wish me congratulations.

      that is crazy about the cauliflower and sugar water. let me know if you ever try it! 🙂

  • Ally April 17, 2012, 7:14 pm

    Sullie is too cute, she seems like a very sweet pup. I love cauliflower. I agree with your friend – try it mashed! In the summer when I can get it locally I’ll use the food processor to chop it into grain sized pieces, add some lemon or rice vinegar, cashews, nutritional yeast (or anything that sounds good) and use it like I would rice.

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:38 pm

      that sounds like such a yummy combo. will have to give it a try!

  • Amy April 17, 2012, 7:42 pm

    Cute pic of Sullie 🙂

    Could you share your recipe for your homemade honey dijon balsamic vinaigrette? As usual, your food looks amazing!

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:41 pm

      hi amy – i don’t usually measure it out but i just whisk together honey, dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. i usually do a 1:1 ratio on the oil and vinegar because i really like the taste of balsamic. hope that helps!

      • Amy April 18, 2012, 8:55 pm

        Thank you!

  • Alyssa @ Fit and Fun in Third April 17, 2012, 8:25 pm

    You’re so right… cauliflower doesn’t get the recognition it deserves! I love to eat it roasted with garlic salt! It’s also amazing mashed up like mashed potatoes…

  • Tracy April 17, 2012, 8:48 pm

    LOVE cauliflower! We go through phases but it’s not uncommon for me to buy 1-2 bags a week. Roasted with garlic, olive oil, s&p is our fave!


  • JennyV April 17, 2012, 9:10 pm

    I agree that it is the forgotten veggie as I love it but go weeks at a time without buying it. The staples in my fridge are carrots, mushrooms, peppers, broccoli, spinach… All others rotate: squash, zucchini, cauliflower…

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:42 pm

      weeks is good! i think this was my first time in a year!

  • Ellie Lawrence April 17, 2012, 9:55 pm

    cauliflower is honestly my favorite food! I know that sounds crazy but it has been since I was 3. I would sit in the grocery cart and beg for cauliflower, my Mom told me that everyone in the store thought I was one odd duck. I can eat a whole head in one sitting (no joke)!

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:42 pm

      that is crazy. love it!

  • Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope April 17, 2012, 11:44 pm

    Raw cauliflower isn’t the best, but I love it roasted or steamed! Your breakfast mix this morning looks amazing btw!

  • Anne April 18, 2012, 12:28 am

    I feel like for how much you exercise, you are not eating nearly enough. Can you talk more about your caloric needs in relation to your level of exercise? You may not diet, but you’re very slim and clearly quite aware of what you’re putting in your body (and how much of it).

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:49 pm

      hi anne – thanks for your comment. i’m not sure if you’re aware (i’ve addressed this many times in the past) but i do not post everything i eat. usually just main meals to give people ideas/inspiration. never wanted the blog to be a food diary or for it to become obsessive.

      i don’t post snacks unless i think they’re blogworthy. there’s much that goes undocumented…pb + apples, bars, bites of sweet things, hummus, tortilla chips while i’m prepping lunch, second servings and so on.

      i hate talking about calories and weight on the blog because everyone is so different and what works for one does not work for all. most days i’m in the 2,500 calorie range when all is said and done. i periodically weigh myself to make sure i’m maintaining my weight given all the exercise i do and have been in the same 3-5 pound range for many, many years.

      let me know if you have any other questions.

      • Anne April 18, 2012, 8:31 pm

        I’m a new-ish reader and have never seen that issue addressed on your blog. It’s good to know because often our “eats” look very similar, but I don’t exercise nearly as much. If anything I under eat (many small and light meals that help compensate for the large meals I eat out as a food writer). I’ve never understood why you aren’t starving!

  • Shay @ Whine Less, Breathe More April 18, 2012, 1:14 am

    Love cauliflower! One of my favorite veggies!

  • Vanessa April 18, 2012, 3:26 am

    Love cauliflower. I eat it raw by chopping it up, topping it with canned tuna, olive oil and nutritional yeast. Sounds like a strange combination, I know. But it’s quick, easy, and yummy.

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:52 pm

      that is an interesting combination. love hearing the stuff others come up with!

  • Jeanelle @ Glocal Girl April 18, 2012, 5:30 am

    Love cauliflower but HATE honeydew… ick! I am not a melon fan. I wish this were not the case because it’s in many fruit salad but oh well.

    Cauliflower is delicious mashed, and a healthier alternative to potatoes too!

  • Rita April 18, 2012, 9:17 am

    Love cauliflower. I also eat it raw, roasted and recently tried it mashed. It was so good. The first time I ate it mashed, I also included a potato which made it super yummy. I since tried it by itself and it’s still really good.

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:53 pm

      mmm…the combo with the potato sounds great!

  • Marla-Deen April 18, 2012, 11:43 am

    I think cauliflower is forgotten, also! I do love it though, and try to sneak it in roasted as often as I can! My 10 year old caught me trying to pass it off as macaroni and cheese lately, though!

    • Jen April 18, 2012, 5:54 pm

      hahaha – 10 year olds are pretty sharp! 😉

  • Karen April 18, 2012, 12:09 pm

    I <3 cauliflower!

  • Liaa April 18, 2012, 3:30 pm

    Looking at all your salads makes me hungry! I love roasted cauliflower, it is so god. I just had some yesterday for dinner actually! Have a great Wednesday!

  • Jen@FoodFamilyFitness April 18, 2012, 7:59 pm

    Cauliflower is actually my favorite vegetable, but I’m a total slacker and will only buy it frozen or cut up for me. I’ve yet to try it roasted though, must try it soon! Happy 2 years for PBR 🙂

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