OIAJ, SIAB, Protein, Mindfulness

Today’s Mini Goal: Find more coupons.  Then use them.  I’m a poor college student with an inclination towards specialty products and an expensive produce habit.  Anybody have any suggestions for where to acquire coupons/food discounts?

I have a confession:

Hello, my name is Caronae and I stayed in my pajamas until 5 pm today.

This was hands down one of the least productive days of my life.  I woke up at noon, made some OIAJ, read, munched on snacks, went back to sleep, flopped around on my bed having some thinking time.  Finally around five I dragged myself from the bed, called my dad for some motivation (he had already been to some sort of oncology conference all day, so that made me feel like it might be a good time for me to get moving), and threw on some hodge podge running clothes (sidenote: I don’t have a huge winter running gear stash and I don’t have the time/money to be doing laundry every few days, so I often end up running in some really funky outfits).  I didn’t set out with any particular route or mileage number in mind, which was quite a nice little change from my usually highly  regimented runs.  I love this kind of run.  It felt freeing to be able to turn left if I wanted to, or right.  To pick up my pace here or slow it down there.  To stop for water or notice the way the surface of the river moved.  It was nice.

Way back in September, when I first started seeing my current therapist, I realized how much I value productivity at the expense of me time.  Today, all I wanted was to snuggle up under my covers with a magazine and some chocolate.  And sometimes, that’s okay.  My therapist used the word “aimlessness” to describe this.  I have to give myself permission to just let go and do something that isn’t going to take me to any specific place.  When I do do this, I almost always feel calmer afterwards.  What’s your favorite “aimless” activity?


And what was even nicer than my run was the fact that MY GARMIN IS ONCE AGAIN FUNCTIONAL.  The company sent me instructions to reset it and recharge it which ended up working out after a few false starts.  So glad to have you back in my life Apricot (what I named my baby).  There were a few minor kinks:

1. Pace: sometimes it was just blatantly wrong: I’d be charging along at what was probably about a nine minute pace and it would tell me I was running at thirteen.  Not cool Garmin, not cool.

2. GPS Signal: okay, so this isn’t actually the Garmin’s fault, but rather NYC’s.  Seriously, there are two many tall buildings and not enough open spaces here.

3. Total Distance: the mileage thingy was going totally fine until the last quarter mile.  I was at about 7.9 and suddenly it started going backwards (it went all the way down to 7.2 before coming back up).  It never even reached the point at which it had started going backwards.  At first I thought I had been misreading the screen since it was dark, but I’m fairly positive I had about 0.05 miles left one second and then 0.70 miles left the next…

Anyone have any ideas/solutions?

I ended up doing eight miles in just over eighty minutes.  Tomorrow will be a long run and (hopefully) yoga.  I’m aiming for 16 miles, since I’m three weeks out from the race and I want this to be my peak.


Really random today because of my bizarre I’m-not-doing-anything schedule.

Apple cinnamon chia OIAJ.  This did NOT fill me up, oddly enough, and I was feeling snackish two hours later.

TJ’s 0% pomegranate Greek yogurt topped with shredded coconut, pb pretzels, and TJ’s chocolate raspberry sticks (of which I had 3 or 4 more).  This was the perfect snack, and also the perfect segue into something I’ve been wanting to talk about for a while…

Protein Talk:

Many bloggers, and even some health professionals, have acknowledged that Americans have this inflated view of the importance of protein and that we are far too focused on it.  In some ways, I don’t disagree: we don’t need to be cramming our faces with steak, chicken, and protein powders all day long, especially if doing so means sacrificing other important micro- and macro-nutrients that our active bodies need to function.  But with that said, I like me some protein, and I also physically need it. I talked about my PCOS here so I won’t tell the whole story again, but suffice it to say, my body does not function well on a diet that is too high in carbs.  I think I’m somewhat insulin resistant, and I have always noticed that I look and feel better when I am more focused on fats and proteins than carbs (and by the way, when I say carbs I mean bread, pasta, rice, not fruits and veggies).   I do eat plenty of whole grains, but never in place of protein.

My dairy-free experiment (which has of late turned into a minimal-dairy experiment) has been making me think about protein.  I have noticed that without milk, yogurt, and cheese in my diet I have been eating way more in the evenings and feeling like I “can’t get full.”  I think I probably ate three servings of PB pretzels the other night.  I still want to continue my minimal-dairy experiment, but I think that if I am going to do that while continuing to take care of my body, I am going to need to educate myself about and focus on some alternative proteins and fats.

I often incorporate dairy into my afternoon snack.  I have a few other items in my rotation, but I’m starting to get tired of them.  Here are the most frequent contenders:

1. Fruits or veggies with nut butter (e.g., carrots with ab, apple with pb)

2. Bars (Luna, Lara, Clif Mojo, Kashi, etc.)

3. Trail mix with dried fruit, nuts, and whole grain cereals

I’m starting to get bored of these options and don’t want to revert to yogurt or cheese or milk.  Does anybody have any suggestions for me? I’m not big on protein powders, and while I love meat, tofu/soy, beans, lentils, eggs and the like, I don’t really envision carrying those around for an afternoon snack.  I need some protein advice, help! “Fat” based snack ideas are also welcome.  Thanks in advance!

Okay, back to today’s eats.

I was starving after my run since it had been so long since I’d eaten.  I think my blood sugar was low and I was a bit dehydrated, so I knew exactly what I wanted: a smoothie.  I so wish I had the equipment to create my own right now, but I don’t (hint hint, mom).  I got a mango smoothie from the student center and topped it with one of homemade granola bars (recipe from Averie) all crumbled up and a few spoonfuls of trail mix.  I ate it SIAB style.  Heaven.  On a spoon.

Three-ish hours later I was hungry for another dinner, so I went with it.  I wanted a giant pile of protein with a side of veggies, so that’s what I had.

I ate the chicken from last night’s sandwich with the sweet potato fries and yellow pepper slices.  This hit the spot.

I’m currently sipping on my favorite tea (jasmine tulsi) with a bit of stevia and some plain soy milk.

I did get a few things done this evening — ran, blogged, read some Adam Smith (pin factories, anyone?), and started a collage!

These are picture cutouts I’m going to use.  And yes, that’s a slice of pie and a baby elephant in the foreground on the right.  I adore hands on creative stuff like collage-making.  The pictures are going to get glued on to a large piece of paper that will say “mindfulness.”  I want to put it up above my door.  That word has really been resonating with me lately.  What word would you choose to describe your thoughts of late?

PS — please excuse the misaligned pictures.  I could not get them quite right!


11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sophia
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 00:13:22

    I used to have productivity issues, too..I still do to some degree, but my laziness wins over. Heh. My favorite relaxation is to just sit before my laptop and reading up on different subjects, or watching Netflix!

    Hm, afternoon snack suggestions: cottage cheese mixed with pumpkin and cinnamon and sunflower seeds is pretty good.
    Or why not make some chicken nuggets, freeze them, and pop them in the micro anytime?


  2. Stef @ moretolifethanlettuce
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 00:48:54

    i really like soy nuts and edamame as a source of protein, it’s quite portable. or heat up a quorn cutlet/burger or a tofu “steak” and stick it in a whole wheat pita…oat bran has like 9 g of protein too, surprising right? and you can always add egg whites to amp it up. but for portability…trail mix is always a go. i was worried that i’d be hungry all the time since cutting yogurt out of my diet (i ALWAYS had greek too, so super protein packed) but that hasn’t been the case. i guess every body is diff! we all need “aimless” days 🙂


  3. Sarah
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 03:21:41

    I’m glad you had your chill-out time, because from reading your blog I get the impression you are a very busy bee and deserve some rest and relaxation. I find this hard too and feel guilty not doing something ‘productive’, but at the end of the day rest and relaxation ARE productive because they allow body and mind to recuperate and have more energy and focus for future activities.

    My favourite ‘aimless’ activities when I actually allow myself to do these include watching DVDs, spending an extra hour or so in bed, and just appreciating ‘being’….that weird sort of doing nothing and appreciating my own existence sort of feeling, maybe a bit like my own version of meditation?

    Sarah x


  4. pen
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 08:54:25

    I am sooo bad at allowing myself any aimless activity. It just makes me feel lazy…which is silly, but it’s this gut feeling that I can’t overcome. That said, I did spend my first hour awake in bed this morning reading blogs. 🙂

    But…now time for a run.

    And I hear you on frustrating garmin issues. I get mad when it tells me I’m running a whole lot slower than I know am. Funny, I don’t have the same annoyed reaction when it clearly goes the other way and tells me I’m faster than I am. 🙂


  5. Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 09:02:11

    Good luck on your run today! I’m starting to love dates as an evening snack, especially when filled with PB. Delicious! And popcorn sprinkled with nutritional yeast is another good one…you get plenty of fiber in the popcorn, and the yeast makes it super high in protein and vitamins. I hope you find something that works well for you!


  6. Christy
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 09:11:22

    Nothing wrong with a lazy day! Those are nice sometimes :). I love hummus. It’s a good way to get some protein and fiber.


  7. EE
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 09:30:44

    My favorite aimless activity is probably playing fetch. Well, having my dog play fetch. And Lifetime movies, although I engage my brain to make stupid comments about them.

    Have a splendid day!


  8. Lauren @ BIOCHEMISTA
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 15:38:29

    I lurrrrrrrve staying in my PJs on the weekends! 😉 It’s 3:37pm now and you betcha I’m still in mine!

    I def agree with you on the protein. I admit, I love how it keeps you feeling full longer than carbs alone, but anything over ~20g is just stored as fat (for most people).

    Good luck on the long run!!!! 🙂




  9. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga)
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 21:08:10

    Hey Caronae, thanks for the shoutout on the protein bars.

    Ok so you know when someone is LEAST “productive” for about 6 mos…it’s called new motherhood.. Let me paint this picture. You are up nursing your child every 2-3 hours round the clock for 6 mos. You dont sleep in stretches more than 3 hrs at a time for nearly a year. Women who tell you their babies sleep “thru the night at 3 mos” are the exception not the rule. So you have breastmilk leaking everywhere, baby puke always on you, you’re sleep deprived, you dont shower or shave regularly, you dont work out regularly, you don’t work for money out of the house…and really the days blur together. That is new motherhood and it feels extremely unproductive (however you are shaping and helping nourish a child so it does all come out in the wash). Your day by comparison was very productive. 🙂


    • caronae
      Feb 28, 2010 @ 23:12:56

      Thanks for sharing Averie. I guess comparatively you’re right, but I totally consider motherhood productive, even if you don’t get anything done for yourself per se. YOU are helping a new creature find her way in this world, which is one of the most productive things a healthy adult can do!


  10. Susan
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 22:44:15

    what about veggies and hummus for a snackie? or pretzels and hummus. or apples and hummus. they’re all faves of mine! As for food discounts, grocery stores usually have a coupon book near where you walk in that lists out their deals and gives you some nice cuts!

    Good luckkkkkkkk and have a good Sunday!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: