Food on the go

July 31, 2012 § Leave a comment

WordPress seems to be having some problems lately – I had quite a few posts in draft but something went wrong when I hit ‘publish’.ย Oh well, writing everything all over again gives me the opportunity to reflect over things some more. ๐Ÿ™‚

One of the topics I wrote about was food on the go i.e. what do we eat when we are away so that we feel happy, healthy and comfortably full? But firstly, why is it important at all to eat nutritious food when you are away? If you’re anything like me, whatever you eat influences your mood and well-being to a great extent. If I’m going to eat a dish high on fat, salt and sugar I know I will feel sluggish afterwards and have low energy levels.

For our amazing trip with Glacier Express two weeks ago I packed quite a bunch of foods:

  • snacks – apples, radishes, a huge cucumber, dates and nuts. And chocolate ๐Ÿ™‚
  • wraps – my wraps had green salad, hummus, millet mash (more on that soon) and a hint of ajvar to spice things up a little. Needless to say, these wraps were very filling and they kept well too

I don’t know about everyone else, but I feel better when I am organised and prepared. Of course we had some ad-hoc meals on our way (think amazing pretzels in Chur and countless cups of coffee) and some of them were not that nutritious – for example the ‘bouillon’ I had in Zermatt was just plain hot water with something that tasted like Delikat. Eeek.

I’m still learning to eat healthy and reasonable while on the go. I recognize that some foods are loaded with fat, sugar and salt, but I am learning to avoid these and make healthier choices. And it’s all because I still want to be sprinting on hills like Bambi when I hit 50. ๐Ÿ™‚

To summarize: eating healthy on the go is possible when you are thinking ahead. Fruit, veggies and nuts make great portable snacks and should be enjoyed freely. Yes, Snickers, Kinder Bueno and crisps are still appealing and will take some time to wean off of, but hey, we are all work in progress…

Intention of the day

July 18, 2012 § Leave a comment

This morning I woke up with a clear head and in a happy state. One thought was particularly powerful: I need to be careful not only about what comes out of my mouth, but also what I put in it.

There is still an amount of toxic, acidic food that I feed myself with. But today I choose to eat clean food.ย Not processed, not full of junk food that should not really be in my body ever. I’m craving raspberries, green tea, cucumbers, salad, hummus, veggie soup, rye bread.

Lots of water, light and clear thoughts.

Flexibility around food

July 16, 2012 § Leave a comment

While my last post gave an overview of tips & tricks for better organising our lives, this time around I will talk about learning to be flexible and the benefits that comes with.

I used to be an all or nothing person: either I ate really healthy food or went all junk for the whole day; either I worked really really hard or did nothing. I also had days (and nights) of intense studying, followed by days of complete burn-out. But that is highly ineffective and one soon comes to realise that nothing is either black or white. Life’s not about feeling like a champ and then feeling like an idiot. In fact what really gets you there is making the best of what you have, adapting, cutting here and adding there and generally trying to be balanced while still staying strong to your values.

One of the things I have improved on is being flexible about nutrition. Just to give you a quick example: last night I prepared my porridge for this morning. However today I woke up with a craving for something spreadable and salty and the porridge just did not appeal to me. So I satisfied my craving and had some pumpernickel with ajvar – a paste made of eggplant, red pepper and tomatoes and saved the porridge for lunch.

So one of life’s great lessons is that the easier you adapt and move on, the better. Worst thing you can do sometimes is get stuck and push something that does not feel right just because you want to go according to plan or according to your principles.

What matters is that at the end of the day (or the week or life) things tend to balance out and so there is no need to obsess about anything or try too hard.ย 

The planning junkie

July 13, 2012 § Leave a comment

I am somewhat obssessed with prepping – for anything. ๐Ÿ™‚ I remember back in the old school days I HAD to have my clothes, ย school bag and snack prepared for the next day, otherwise I would not be able to sleep. To this day I am a big fan of deciding what I am going to wear the next day so I don’t have to think about it first thing in the morning. Revising before an exam or interview makes me feel so much more confident… although I am quite spontaneous and can improvise easily should the need be. ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s no revelation that when it comes to a healthy lifestyle, organisation is KEY. Some things I have learned over these months:

  • You can make breakfast, lunch and snacks ahead. I love putting together a menu for the week – this way I make sure I incorporate nutrient-dense and delicious meals. It also cuts cost and helps the environment. During the warmer season I tend to be a bit more relaxed about what we eat and enjoy throwing a meal together quickly. Wash and cut up veggies at the week-end, seal them in ziplock bags and you’re good to go.
  • Cook in bulk – this works especially if you are cooking for family, but if you end up with too much you can always offer it to a friend or co-worker. A big pot of soup lasts in the fridge for days and is so incredibly easy to make. Same for casseroles… or any veggie dishes for that matter. I love making big batches of hummus and mashed beans, but they never last long because I simply LOVE them. Freezing veggies and fruit when they are season is also a very good idea – so far I have stocked the freezer with raspberries and strawberries and I’m planning on adding redcurrants and blackcurrants too. Although eating fresh is best, having a frozen meal which you can quickly heat up when you’re ravenously hungry will save you from eating anything on site. ๐Ÿ™‚ Which brings me to my next point….
  • Options. I, like most people, have moods and can get side-tracked. Sometimes I just don’t feel like oatmeal in the morning or salad at lunch time. What I do love is having the option to choose, which is why it is important to think ahead. Sometimes I might choose the Snickers bar over the apple, but if the apple is already washed for me… it makes things a lot easier.
  • Work-out plan – this is also WIP for me. I fully agree that deciding in advance on the details of a work-out and commiting to that schedule can help so much when you are feeling under the weather or just darn lazy. ๐Ÿ™‚ That doesn’t mean you should not listen to your body when it tells you it is too exhausted to do anything, but it is a great way of making sure you incorporate this crucial element to your healthy lifestyle. And I promise everything looks better after a good run or yoga class.

While I am not the most organised person, I am really happy when I am able to stick to my plan. Thinking ahead creates space for other opportunities and helps you make the right choices. It’s no secret that when you come home exhausted from work you would rather grab a bag of chips and doze off in front of the TV, then feel sorry for yourself. But when dinner’s just minutes away and your running shoes are exactly where you left them, that makes you feel G-R-E-A-T. Which is exactly what we are all aiming for….

A little less conversation… (1)

July 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

… A little more action

It is a truth universally acknowledged that women tend to complain a little too much and become victims of carefully crafted fictions.If someone could follow the narrative going on in a woman’s brain they would be… speechless, to say the least.

My husband doesn’t appreciate all the effort I make to keep him happy. My boss is jealous of my presentation skills and afraid I will take his place, which is why he doesn’t promote me. My jeans have become a little tight lately… no wonder with all the chocolate and chips I’m eating. Soon I will become this huge elephant covered in cellulite. And I have a ton of zits… But I just get CRAZY every time my mom lectures me. She always critises me and God knows she’s not better than me in any way. Why then did dad divorce her?!? Yeah, I’m just like my mother and one day my husband will just get a divorce and leave me. After all, he spends hours on Facebook staring at gorgeous bodies… that is what they are, flawless young bodies… Little does he know women are just after money. I should make more effort and keep him happy. Maybe buy a new sexy dress and … yeah right, who am I kidding? When he’s with me all he keeps thinking of is football and other women!!! I’m hopeless (sighs and chocolate).

This self-sabotaging scenario can unfold every single day. You put on this tape and listen to it over and over again, thenย  break in tears and feel sorry for yourself. You think ‘what if I could just be different, more like….(insert name of person with longer legs, better job etc.). And cry some more feeling hopeless and helpless.

What can help? A lot of things, but a here-and-now solution is a glass of water, a deep breath and running shoes. That’s right, you put on your running shoes, get out and run until that movie in your head is over.

With this, I’m off for a run. ๐Ÿ˜€

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