From Julie W. of San Francisco So Far and Shedding for the WeddingKerry and I have been talking about being healthy since we were seniors in high school. And though we’ve had many a chocolate binge (and other such binges) together, we are both coming to embrace the way that eating well, exercising and staying healthy in general makes us feel. I will say that Kerry has been a little more consistent than me, but this post does not aim to compare. For “Comparison,” as good old Teddy Roosevelt put it, “is the thief of joy.”
Sharing healthy habits makes them easier to stick to. Kerry tells me she was inspired to start her blog partially because of a Shedding for the Wedding tumblr I put together in anticipation of my brother’s wedding. I launched this in conjunction with a friendly competition my family was doing, a kind of Biggest Loser thing. No one in my family read the blog but my brother did lose 40 pounds and win the $500 prize.
Sometimes I will text Kerry about my latest accomplishment: “Hey – I ran 3 miles!” and even when she responds, “Well I ran ten, you fatty,” I know she is proud of me. Last weekend, I had a pretty well-rounded Saturday. So much so, that Kerry asked me to break it down on her blahg! That means a lot coming from this modern day Suzanne Somers.
So, if you really want to know….here’s what I did on my Saturday in San Francisco.
I started my day off by sleeping in and staying in bed to meditate with two of my favorite gurus, Oprah & Deepak Chopra, as part of a 21-day challenge I am participating in. Saturday’s centering thought was this: “I am perfection. I am healthy. I am strong.” If you’ve considered meditating but don’t know where to start, I highly recommend this series. It’s free and easy and only takes 15 minutes a morning. Sign up and find all of the archived meditations here. Positive affirmations such as these – even if they seem futile at the time – can only help you mosey on down on the path of wellness.
Next after my R&R, it was time to eat. I decided I’d make breakfast with ingredients already in my kitchen – which is hardly anything. I saw lots of rice chips and rice cakes in there, but nothing of substance that I could think of. But to my surprise, I stumbled upon a recipe for gluten-free Quinoa Rice Granola that called for some things I actually had in my pantry… (We goin Sizzla!)
Sadly though, I did not have two of the most basic ingredients in American cuisine: butter and honey, and the recipe explicitly called for “butter and honey.” The rule-breaker that I am, I used extra virgin olive oil and Organic Grade A Maple Syrup instead. I also used a lot more cinnamon than called for, added chia seeds, and some other ‘Julie touches’ I like to call them. Here is the adapted recipe that turned out really really well. Will didn’t even make a face!
GLUTEN FREE GRANOLA, BABY!*
- 5 big rice cakes
- ½ cup quinoa flakes
- ½ cup chopped almonds (I toasted mine. Ok I didn’t, but someone did.)
- ⅓ cup organic maple syrup (The good kind, not Mrs. Butterworth)
- 4 tbsp olive oil (or, if you are fortunate enough to have Coconut oil I bet that would be awesome.)
- 3 tsp. ground cinnamon & 1 tsp nutmeg & ginger
- 3 tsp. coconut flakes & 2 tsp. chia seeds
- 1tsp vanilla (OR MORE!)
- 1 cup dried cranberries, raisins, or other bite-size dried fruit
2. DRY INGREDIENTS – Crumble rice cakes in bowl until only 1/4-inch-or-smaller pieces remain. Stir in quinoa flakes, almonds, coconut and chia.
3. Melt together olive oil and syrup in saucepan over low heat. Stir in cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Once heated, pour over rice cake mixture until well coated. Try to get everything to stick together! Spread on baking sheet, and bake 10 minutes. Stir, and bake 10 minutes more, or until granola is golden-brown. Cool on baking sheet. Break granola into small clusters. Mix in dried fruit (oops I didn’t do this last!)
*Maybe most granolas are inherently gluten free, but when you make a recipe with your own two hands that bears that trendy phrase, it just tastes better. This also tastes great on some Greek yogurt.
WENT UP A HILL
Some Saturday mornings, when there are tons of sport games happening and Will has a date with Comcast, I need to make my own plans (insert sad, dependent face). Usually I meet up with Courtney and Molly, but they were with their significant others this weekend. I was feeling lonely. Will (he might not appreciate me telling the WORLD wide web this) was really sweet and got through a whole 30-minute On Demand Yoga video with me….then he was off to watch a lacrosse game.
Before he left, he advised me to “get lost.” Don’t worry; he meant this literally. He suggested I go on a long run, wander around, and take it all in. It was 70 degrees in SF and the there were parks to be visited and hills to be mounted. So, I resisted the urge to glide through my standard flat run through the Golden Gate Panhandle. Instead, I started my run uphill and kept going up for a good 15 minutes. But ya know the good thing about running uphill? (I just found this out…) you usually get a view and you usually get to go down after that. Running uphill at the beginning of a run also makes the rest of it seem easy. So I kept going. I ran around the Haight, and seeing tourists filling their faces with ice cream made me all the more happier that I was running. Is that mean?
After the 45 minute-run (which is LONG for me) I got the makings for chia seed pudding (a recipe from Kerry) and walked home. It was such a good Saturday that I didn’t even feel that bad about my Saturday night – which belongs on a-whole-nother blog.
Thanks Kerry for letting me contribute to your awesome blog. You’re an inspiration to all of us out there trying to be healthy. Namaste.
(NOTE: To anyone checking Julie’s blogs, she has not been keeping them up due to the stress of every day life. She says that she hopes to re-start when her 21 day meditation series is over and she is more calm & level-headed.)