Thursday, May 26, 2011

Farewell Friend

Where to begin?  The good or the bad or the ugly?
I suppose we could just jump right into the bad and the ugly.  The above photo looks like my worse nightmare!  But that is what I faced this morning.  Six shots.  Count them, 1...2...3...4...5...and 6!  Bam, bam, bam...other arm...bam, bam, bam.  Done.
This poster helped me along a bit..."Africa is amazing, Typhoid fever is not." 

My arms are very sore today so I am treating myself to a rest day.  But I have been stretching and rubbing the muscles a ton, I've heard it helps reduce the pain.

In other news...I have been sticking to my eating guidelines very well these last two days...with just one minor slip-up.  Meals have looked a little something like this:
Breakfast yesterday was a baked sweet potato with a drizzle of agave and a scoop of dried fruit and nut mix.
Served on the side was a sliced pear with a teaspoon of peanut butter. 

Can you believe there are no oats involved in this breakfast?  I am currently out of oats, milk and bananas.  What is the world coming too!?
Lunch was a bounty of fresh produce straight from the garden.  Not mine, of course.  I am skipping the garden this summer because I will be in Africa for most of the harvest.  My friend Shannon sent me home with some fresh greens from her garden at Tuesday night's bible study.  I was very happy to take them off her hands (as I will be for anyone else with garden extras!)  This salad was Mexican inspired with tomatoes, corn, and refried beans.
A handful of the dried fruit and nut mix as well as a couple dried apricots rounded out the meal...and yes I did sit back down at the table to eat this no broken rules here!

For dinner last night we celebrated with my good friend and long-time running partner Angie.  She is moving to Ohio this weekend so we had a farewell dinner for her.
We ate at a little fusion restaurant in Davidson called Sabi.  Their food is really good...but in my opinion you can't really go wrong with sushi and stir-fry!

Some of us shared a bottle of wine.
Fitting, since most of us met working at the Y and have all taken more kickboxing classes together than we care to divulge.
My pour...this was my only drink of the evening since I was playing DD...and I'm not sure how wine fits into The Marsha Challenge.  I drank this early in the meal and was good for the rest of the evening with just ice water.  I think that is legal, right?

For dinner, Forbes and I shared two entrees. 
Tofu lettuce wraps.
And stir fry with brown rice. 

After dinner, we made our way to Charlotte, to one of our all-time favorite bars, the Flying Saucer.
We were already beginning to have a great time, as you can tell!  The Flying Saucer has over 100 different kinds of beers and probably much more than that.  They also have the UFO club.  If you drink 200 different kinds of beer (you can only have 3 per night toward your 200) then you get your name on a saucer on the wall!  Angie is on 75 and Forbes is on 25.  The club isn't really my mug of beer cup of tea, but I enjoy tasting all of the different beers.
Me, Angie and Chrissy!  Oh boy, we will miss Angie very, very much!

Luckily it won't be too long before we get to meet up again.  After Forbes and I return from Africa, we fly straight into Indianapolis for a wedding.  From there, we are actually riding with Angie back to North Carolina to get home.  She has an appointment back here and was already planning to be driving this way that same week!  We are going to save so much money and it will be awesome to catch up during the 8 hour drive!

A little further into the evening we all began to feel a little munchy!  We ordered my absolute favorite appetizer from The Flying Saucer- even though it doesn't exactly fit my new eating guidelines.
These pretzels were all white and every bit as good as I remembered.  Sorry Marsha!  The mustard was really the winning piece of this snack.  It was spicy but in a wasabi sort of way.  The kind of spice that hits you hard but then leaves you just as quickly as it came. 

We didn't make it home until around midnight...which is sooo late for this old geezer!  I was so tired this morning I couldn't even eat breakfast.  We got up and went straight to our immunization appointment and by the time we sat down for shots I was starving.  I snacked on a stashed Larabar to curve my appetite until we made it home.
Another taco-esque salad was tossed together for lunch today and it was every bit as good as it was yesterday! 

Overall I would say The Marsha Challenge has been exciting but difficult.  It is beginning to get easier as I am recognizing which foods are acceptable and which ones are not.  The important thing to note is that although this challenge has cut out many things...I am not at all restricted!  I can eat whatever I want...if I want donuts, well then I have to make them myself, and they have to be whole grain and all natural sugars must be involved.  Same goes for chips, and dips, and pastas and cakes, etc. 

The other evening, I slipped up and had a scoop of ice cream on top of my fruit pizza.  The ice cream doesn't fit the guidelines: it has sugar as one of the first 3 ingredients and also has more than 5 total ingredients.  However, there is an easy solution to get your ice cream fix and the very next evening I whipped this up:
Peanut Butter Banana Soft Serve (for 2)

1 1/2 bananas, peeled, sliced and frozen
1 tbsp peanut butter
toppings of your choice (mine were chocolate chips that are grain sweetened and have less than 5 ingredients)

In food processor, process frozen bananas for a long time!  But seriously, you may be processing for up to 15 minutes.  I like to set out my bananas a few minutes before I make the soft serve to let them soften just a little.  You will need to scrape the edges down several times as you are processing the bananas.  When they begin to whip together, add the peanut butter, and continue to process until it resembles whipped cream. 

Divide between two bowl and top with your choice of toppings and enjoy! 

This is a super easy fix when you are trying to eat healthy, cut out processed foods, and snack on simply whole foods. 

I am really enjoying this challenge and find that I am actually enjoying my food more now than I did before.  I have to carefully consider each thing that goes on my plate, I have to be present while eating, not drowned out to the television, and I also have to be cognizant of how the food makes me feel, so I can stop eating before I am full and only eat when I'm truly hungry.  I feel as though my relationship with food has improved significantly in just the few short days I have been participating.  And I am excited to see how it continues to improve!


  1. Greg and I love The Flying Saucer! We'll have to meet you guys there sometime! I think we even have a giftcard to use. LOVE banana/PB softserve. That's the best :)

  2. We did have an awesome time at dinner and the Saucer; thanks to you, Alex, Chrissy, and everyone who was along to make it a fantastic send-off! I will miss my workout buddy and being able to hang out whenever, but I'll be glad to see you in July and October!