Archive of ‘challenge’ category

Walk This Way

I loved all of your responses to my Back On Track post. This challenge isn’t really about the food at all; it’s about my mindset. I’m not eating what most people would call “crap”… I’m just trying to be a little more balanced and mindful. This challenge is more about exercise and motivation and the mental part of health.

To get back on track this morning, I laced up slipped on my sneakers pink crocs and headed out for a walk. It was early and I needed some extra hop in my step, so I got a big cuppa joe from 7-11. Coffee is not evil. It’s a lovely lovely drink that makes me happy in the morning. And it’s a great walking buddy.


Oh thank heaven!

I ended up walking 4+ miles while chatting away with my dad and then my mom. The last mile or so I just walked and thought about stuff.

I’m Back On Track

A few of my favorite bloggers have recently committed to getting back on track. Caitlin declared the whole month of November as a time to get back on track; Angela is doing it for the first week of November, starting today (the 2nd). I’m feeling it too: I haven’t been doing that much yoga, I haven’t been walking as much as I like to, and, to be perfectly honest, I’ve been eating a lot of crap. I haven’t been practicing mindfulness either, and I find myself munching through the day instead of eating proper meals.

This challenge might be hard for a few reasons – 1) Bobby and I are driving across the country next week; 2) the holidays and lots of decadent foods are coming up; 3) due to the move, I don’t know what my new routine will be (we’re moving to Manhattan btw). But I’m going to try. I’m synthesizing their goals and mine, and this is what I came up with. I’m going to try to do this for as long as I can. These aren’t arbitrary; these goals are what my ideal lifestyle would be so I want to keep up with them.

Diner Food

We decided to go NJ-diner-style for dinner last night. I looked up “breakfast food” on and stumbled across American Diner in Sunnyvale.  This is what I got:

25 breakfast

That is 1/2 a Belgian waffle, 2 halves of French toast, and a fruit cup.  I also poured some HFCS-free (!) maple syrup on top.  It was a very large portion and I did actually finish the whole plate (well, I didn’t finish that huge pat of butter – but probably half of it).  I also had some of Bobby’s muffin and a bite of his ham (eh – I’m not really feeling meat so much ever since Food, Inc.). American Diner was actually pretty cute, but… not really a place that we’ll be going back to very often.  It was very – well, diner-ey.

24 american diner

Oat bran in a jar

I finally got around to trying this new idea that I’ve been seeing recently. I think Heather started it, and I also saw it on Kath’s blog and Brandi’s blog (which was also on HealthyYum). It’s oat bran in an almost-empty nut butter jar.

01 pb jar oat bran

When I got near the end of my Trader Joe’s peanut butter (all natural, salted), I used it as my “bowl” for oat bran. I believe this was a batch of PBU oat bran (oat bran cooked with pbu – peanut butter and chocolate milk blend) simply topped with sesame seeds.

Another yum that I had recently (Sunday night) was this bowl of soy frozen yogurt from Fraiche, topped with sunbutter (sunflower seed butter; I brought it with me from home). I also added cinnamon, nutmeg, and cocoa powder. I ate this before I saw Food, Inc. and was very pleased with myself for making a good choice.

June Challenges Update

Happy 4th of July!


I’m finally going to update about my June challenges.

  1. Decluttering.  I did okay with this, but only because I already had 2 big bags of books to give away and several bags of clothes.  I haven’t taken them to goodwill yet, but I will soon.  As for my pantry, I actually did do well with that.  I used up a lot of pasta, soba noodles, random nuts and dried fruits, to0-sugary instant oatmeal (made vegan cookies for Bobby to take to work), frozen veggies (I think I might be over them), random frozen snacks (Bobby), frozen shrimp, instant miso soup, and maybe even more that I’m forgetting.  Bobby has also decided to sell his Wii.  He has an Xbox so he doesn’t really need the Wii anymore. (If you live in the bay area and want to buy a Wii + controllers + games, let me know – otherwise he’s going to sell it to a resale place.)

Spontaneous Fried Rice

I was helping make fried rice last night (for Bobby) and I decided to have some for myself too.

03 fried rice

It was so good! There’s more rice underneath the meat and veggies; I just like stealing extra toppings.  I’m going to have fried rice more often.  This might be the only way that I enjoy rice.  Just as a comparison, here are Bobby’s dinner (left) and my dinner (right):

04 fried rice dinner

He had a huge bowl of rice, a small bowl of salad, and went back for more rice.  I had a huge bowl of salad, a small bowl of rice, and went back for more salad.  The salad (Thai papaya salad) was the same one I posted yesterday but with added shrimp and no carrot (no extra beta-carotene).

This dinner definitely counts as spontaneous (one of my July goals).

The Last Hurrah

I have 3 goals in mind for July:

  1. Less kabocha!
  2. More healthy fats!
  3. Be spontaneous :)

I had a kind of last hurrah with kabocha last night and finished a whole one (and it was big).  I think it’s time for moderation.

As for healthy fats… I do enjoy my nut butters and olive oil, but not enoughMaria posted about this yesterday, too.  I have nut butter with breakfast and usually a little bit of olive oil with dinner and lunch – but it probably totals about 2 tablespoons altogether.  So I’m going to go for it and start incorporating more fat.

Spontaneity is also something I want to improve on.  This is just eating what I want when I want it, rather than waiting for the normal times that I eat and eating the same things.

A break from…

I wanted to do something new for breakfast since I wasn’t in the mood for green oats.  I decided to go all macrobiotic and do an oat bran + miso soup brekkie.

17 breakfast

The oat bran was:

  • 1/2 cup oat bran
  • 1.5 cups water
  • dash of salt
  • 4-5 tablespoons of my ABU (1 part almond butter to 3 parts chocolate soy milk)

The miso soup was:

  • matcha soybean green tea for the base (with lemon)
  • wakame
  • spoon of miso

16 lemon green tea

I try to make a big pitcher of tea every morning and drink it throughout the day.  It was really good as a miso soup base.  I especially liked the hint of lemon (I slice a whole lemon and dump it into the tea).

18 green tea

Whole Life Challenges and the future

I just finished 2 weeks of my Whole Life Challenge.


Yoga… At the beginning of this challenge I was practicing yoga sporadically, and I felt like I had lost the passion that I used to have.  Even through the first week of the challenge, I didn’t really take the yoga part seriously.  Yes, I was doing 10 minutes of yoga or yoga stretching every day, but it didn’t mean anything.  Finally, on Monday of this week I did the video that got me into yoga in the first place – 20-minute buns & thighs by Tom Morley (exercise tv).  This was the yoga that I loved.  This brought back memories of running with my dad and trying to teach him yoga afterwards (when he visited back in November).  Memories of falling over when attemping warrior 3.  Memories of gaining the strength and flexibility that I needed to be a yogi.  Memories of finally being able to complete the routine with ease and enjoyment.   I got back my yoga, and I flowed on my own yesterday and today.  Today I set the timer for 30-minutes (5 more than yesterday), and I didn’t look it until it beeped just as I was done cooling down.  This challenge gave me back my yoga.

Challenges Galore

Only one day left of the Whole Life Challenge. I guess the 2 weeks are over on Thursday night (tomorrow night), but I’m gonna keep going after that. I still need work! Here’s an update:


  1. Yoga – yes! I’m finally doing this every day. Tom Morley’s “buns & thighs yoga” has invigorated me. I’ve done it every morning for the past 3 days. It’s only 20 minutes and it is my favorite 20 minute class ever.
  2. Walking – I love walking. On Monday I walked to and from the post office. Yesterday I did 2 walking videos from exercise tv – a walking warm-up and a walking cool-down (each 10 minutes). They’re under pink ribbon workouts if you want to find them.  Today I walked for exactly 10 minutes on the treadmill before I went on the stepper.

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