Here I go

30 Oct

So, I’m going to ignore the fact that it’s been almost a month since my last post and just jump right into things.

I don’t know if I ever mentioned that I sort of gave up on the whatever number chance I gave running.

But I did.

However, let it be known that I am giving running yet another chance, because it deserves it and I owe it to myself to show that I will be able to run a 5k someday. Then a 10k. Maybe a half?

Yesterday I bit the bullet and went to Ritchie’s, a store near me that specializes in running shoes. These are the shoes I had been wearing on my other running attempts, and they were killing my ankles.

$30 at the Adidas outlet. Comfortable overall, but not good for my weak ankles

I wish I had caught the name of the guy who helped me out, because even though I know there’s probably a 0% chance he reads this, I really appreciate his willingness to help a clueless beginner like me.

If you’ve ever been fitted for running shoes, you know that whoever is fitting you has you do several movements that show your arch type, and then they go from there. This wasn’t any different. I had no idea how weak my ankles were until I put on the first pair of shoes he brought out and jogged around the indoor track. I felt stable, an adjective I would not use to describe my previous runs. I only ended up trying on two different pairs, and if I had been with my mom that would not have sufficed. When I played tennis in high school, whenever I needed a new racquet or new shoes, we would usually go to multiple places and try out multiple products. As much as I tried to bring my mom’s mindset with me yesterday, it was clear to me that the first pair of shoes I tried on were going to be “the ones”.

I present to you the shoe that I’m pretty sure a good chunk of beginning runners have but are nonetheless phenomenal (in my extremely amateur opinion, mind you)

Asics GT-2150

Yes, these set me back more than my Adidas, but I believe it was worth it. I got a sweet student discount AND a free t-shirt, too, so…

Naturally, I couldn’t wait to try out my new shoes, so I set out for a run as soon as I got home. It was barely 45 degrees outside, plus it was windy, plus I couldn’t find my long leggings, so my getup was slightly ridiculous.

I also decided to try out a slightly different plan than the Couch-to-5k this time. It’s from an old issue of Runner’s World inspired by the New York Road Runners. It’s slightly more flexible than the C25K (has you run 2-4 times a week instead of a set 3) and as a result takes 9 weeks instead of 6. I’m totally fine with this – honestly I’m just trying to be able to run a mile without stopping. Then two. Then three…

Anyway, I wrote on my hand the plan for the first run because my short-term memory kind of sucks.

Run one minute, walk two minutes, repeat six times, then run one minute

Okay, I’m obviously not the point where I “like” running. I don’t know if I’ll ever be, to be honest, but I do want to get to the point where I can run multiple minutes without stopping. I was completely winded at the end of each minute yesterday, but it was my first run in awhile. I had a lot of great things going for me, too, which helped boost my spirits:

  • good shoes (obviously)
  • the temperature. My lungs weren’t as happy as the rest of my body, but they’d never really been exposed to large amounts of cold air coming in, so I can’t complain.
  • playlist. The whole sequence took me about 20 minutes, and this playlist fit perfectly. “Defying Gravity” was a great song to end with.

Today, my shins are sore, but in a good way, unlike the other times I ran. I’m surprisingly looking forward to my next run (probably either tomorrow or Monday), although I know it might not be as good as the one yesterday. I am finally ready for that. I am ready to prove to myself that I will be able to run longer than a minute.

Here I go.

In which my opinionated Leo side comes out

4 Oct

It’s not really surprising that I am disgusted by this article in the latest issue of Marie Claire. I am nowhere near the first person to comment on it, and maybe nobody will read this – that doesn’t matter to me. I don’t claim to be a particularly opinionated person (although I am a Leo), but when something “chaps my ass”, as my dear friend Mak would say, I’m going to write about it.

I first got interested in food/healthy living blogs around this time last year. If you’ve been reading for awhile or know me in real life, you’ll know that I used to be a journalism major. The first blog of this “genre” that I read was Kailey’s, and to this day she is still one of my favorites. What I think is so wonderful about this community is that it is composed of people from all walks of life. I was able to relate to Kailey because we went to the same school and had the same major. The difference was that it was a good fit for her. Me? Not so much – and it was through her blog and others, including “The Big Six” (PS I had never heard that term before reading this article, which leads me to believe it might have been made up) that I discovered I was more in control of my life than I thought. So many of the people behind the blogs I read have made huge changes in their lives – bigger than simply changing a major or switching schools. They helped me realize I didn’t have to stick with something that made me unhappy. In December of 2009, I made the decision to switch from journalism to sociology with a minor in psychology because I was so interested in the way people worked. Some people told me I was making a big mistake leaving one of the top journalism programs in the country. These people are coincidentally the ones with whom I don’t associate anymore because they loved to pull me down. I wasn’t going to put up with that. Switching my major was the first step in a whirlwind of changes that were to come. Some of these changes weren’t easy – I left behind most of my friends when I transferred schools, and to say I miss them like crazy would be an understatement. But, I’m going off on a tangent. If you’re a new reader and want more details, you can find them here and here.

Now, onto the point I’m trying to make.

The women mentioned in this article, as well as many other members of this community, blog for themselves. What they do works for them, but it might not work for others. Each and every one of their stories is unique and inspirational and has no doubt had a positive impact on more than a handful of people’s lives, including mine. They bravely put themselves out there, and while a negative comment here and there isn’t a huge deal in the grand scheme of things, an article like this in a national magazine unfortunately has a much bigger impact.

I have a great deal of respect for journalists who enjoy the profession and fairly present the material. Katie Drummond did not do that. We all know the freedoms the First Amendment guarantees us  (if you don’t, that’s really sad and you should Google it pronto), and  libel is not a part of these freedoms. The quotes used in this article were taken out of context and were offensive to not only the women mentioned but those who admire them and enjoy what they write.

I was never a fan of Marie Claire in the first place – it just wasn’t my thing. I know that a lot of people who read this article, however, liked the magazine, and no longer wish to read and/or subscribe to it. Though I dropped my journalism major, I kept with me my appreciation of good journalism. This article doesn’t even come close to fitting into that category. I wouldn’t have called Marie Claire “great journalism” prior to reading this article, but it’s a solid reminder that you shouldn’t believe everything the media shove in your face.

Consistency is overrated

28 Sep

I’ve come to the realization that I am never going to be one of those people who goes to school full time and is able to blog even somewhat regularly. It’s a little sad, because I like blogging, but school and everything that comes with it has to be a priority.

Needless to say, Impatient & Hungry has taken and will continue to take the back burner. I know I’ve made all of these promises about how this is going to get so much better and I’m going to post all the time and blah blah blah. No. I can’t promise that and I feel awful that I ever said that in the first place.

I do mean this: I don’t know when my next post will be. It won’t be tomorrow. It may not even be next week. I wish I could devote more time to this without sacrificing my grades and my sanity, but unfortunately that just can’t happen right now. Insert sad face here.

Until next time, whenever that may be. I’ll leave you with some pictures.

epic farmers' market loot

what apples are supposed to look like

Vic and me before her homecoming in the beautiful dress my mom made...and yes, she's wearing Converse.

I’m not dead

18 Sep

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve been a slacker when it comes to Impatient & Hungry. While most of my absence has been simply due to me living life, to be frank, some of that living wasn’t what I needed to be doing. Thanks to a bit of a wake up call this week and support from my family and friends, I think I am back on the right track. Oh, and no, I did not fall into the habit of using hard drugs a la Desperate Lives (did anyone have to watch that in high school? No? Okay,maybe my health teacher just thought made-for-TV movies sent a better message than he ever could).

Ahem. Anyway.

I know I don’t have a huge “following” or anything like that, but I mean it when I say I do want to post regularly like I was doing this summer. I do this for myself more than anything or anyone else, but I like getting feedback from the handful of people who do read :)

I don’t have anything terribly exciting to report. My mom and I went to the farmers’ market this morning, which was glorious as always. I had a faaaaaaabulous veggie breakfast burrito that was almost as big as a Chipotle burrito but ten times better. I took a picture of it with my phone and I thought I put it on TwitPic, but it’s not showing up. I’ll definitely be eating that again, though, so it’ll make an appearance someday. The rest of the day was spent doing homework, reading, taking a nap, and walking Lena. Like I said, nothing too exciting, but I’m not complaining. Things are starting to get a little busier with school, so down time is even more appreciated.

I’m itching to make dinner for my family again – it’s just a matter of finding time and the right recipe/ingredients. I have several bookmarked, so hopefully that can happen soon.

Until next time!

Dear food

9 Sep

Dear food,

I miss you.

I miss the way we would meet several times a day and all of the different ways you knew how to attract me.

Your looks (shallow, but true)

Your smell

Your taste

I’ve been thinking about you a lot, more than I usually do.

We’re being kept apart. My appetite just isn’t cooperating and we both have to suffer.

I went to the doctor today to see if a reunion between you and I is in the near future. Of course, bloodwork was ordered and I won’t know anything until next week.

I know you’re trying so hard to come back into my life. You’re in the picture messages I receive. You’re a gift from the neighbors down the street. You’re talked about in my nutrition class. You’re everywhere.

Something in my body does not want you, though. I don’t know what it is, but I am determined to find it out.

Until then, I’m sorry. You know this isn’t easy for me.

I feel like I’m fighting with my best friend. Please forgive me, food. We’ll be together soon enough.

Love,

Liz

Living life

6 Sep

Oh, hello.

I’m not going to apologize for my absence because I’ve just been living life and I really don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.

Living life the past week or so has consisted of starting fall semester at my new school, spending a few blissful days in Athens visiting friends this past weekend, and some other things. I know that last part sounds vague, but certain topics aren’t quiiite ripe for pickin’ just yet, so I’m just going to leave it at that.

Needless to say, my life has been a bit of a whirlwind and my posts are going to be a lot more sporadic than they were this summer. I’m going to be pretty busy making sure I do well in school and avoiding things with any form of corn in them as well as continuing to eat (and  hopefully cook) good food and getting closer and closer to maintaing crow pose. You know how it goes.

Adjusting to the changes in my life is going to mean focusing less on taking pictures and writing about them and more on making sure I fully enjoy and am aware of everything that is happening around me. I have a bad habit of forgetting how lucky I am sometimes.

I’m definitely not going to stop blogging. That would be ridiculous – I enjoy it way too much. But there are other things that need my attention right now and I can’t constantly be attached to my camera or laptop. Ya dig?

Until next time (which I promise will not be too long from now)!

Lucky stars, tasty food and a fresh start

28 Aug

Get ready – this one’s going to be a bit of a doozie.

Last fall, when I was just starting to get into but not quite fully immersed in the world of food and healthy living blogs, I was taking a sociology class called Classes & Inequality. If you’ve been reading from the beginning, you might remember me talking about a paper I had to write for this class about a “pet peeve” inequality in our society. After some thinking, I finally decided on the inequality that lies in the availability (or lack thereof) of nutritious foods for everyone, regardless of income. Many people are afflicted with various conditions that require them to maintain a strict diet, a diet that may cost more than is feasible for them to spend. Other people may just want to eat better but do not have the financial means to do so, so they continue to buy unhealthy foods because they are generally cheaper. What’s even worse is that many people in this country alone don’t even have access to education that would teach them about eating well.

Anyway, before I completely rewrite this paper for you, the bottom line is that there are people in our own country who could reap the immense benefits of a healthy diet but for whatever reason do not have access to it. If you have access to healthy food, it’s easy to forget that people around us such as classmates, coworkers and neighbors might not. I know whenever I’m chowing down on a good bowl of oatmeal or a dinner full of vegetables, I don’t always think, “I am so lucky to have this kind of food on a regular basis.”

This is actually something that’s been on my mind off and on since doing the research for and writing that paper. The fact that I’m currently (and finally – I bought it over spring break and it came out in 2006) reading Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma has made me think about it even more lately. If you don’t know what this book is about, you could read the summary on Amazon, but basically Michael Pollan (a journalist and a professor at UC Berkeley) follows four “meals” from the beginning of the process of however they are grown/manufactured to the dinner table. It’s so interesting and I recommend it to anyone who doesn’t mind looking a little deeper into where your food comes from. The first section is entirely about corn, which I probably find especially intriguing given my recently discovered intolerance to the grain that’s in everythang. Some of it is slightly uncomfortable to read and makes me glad that I do not eat meat/corn anymore, but overall it’s informative and thought-provoking. There’s also apparently a version of this book for kids, so if any of you have older kids, slip this under the crook of their arm while they’re sleeping.

(Sorry, I have a hard time organizing my thoughts when it comes to things that make the wheels in my brain turn, so if this just seems like a big jumble of words to you, pictures-a-plenty will show up if you scroll down a bit.)

It’s probably common knowledge by now that I’m a wee bit behind in some “foodie trends”, but within the last week I’ve made some giant strides, if I do say so myself. I don’t mind being “behind”, though, because it just means more for me to discover :)

I guess we’ll start with the chia seeds I bought earlier this week . I debuted them in my breakfast of oats in a Peanut Butter & Co “The Bee’s Knees” jar.

1/2 cup stovetop oats, 1 cup water, sliced banana cooked in, drizzle of honey and 1 T of chia magic

I knew the chia seeds wouldn’t affect the taste, and maybe this was just in my mind, but I seemed to be fuller for longer than I normally would have been after a breakfast like this.

I had them again the next day (Thursday) in a slightly different variation of oats, this time in a boring bowl.

1/2 cup stovetop oats, 1 cup almond milk, 1/2 banana cooked in, spoonful of almond butter, drizzle of honey, 1 T chia magic

up close and personal

My only complaint about the chia seeds it that they got stuck in my teeth really easily – nothing a bit of flossing won’t fix, though.

Thursday I also got not one but two packages in the mail. The first I never managed to snap a picture of before I transferred it to a jar, but it was a 2 pound bag of Sun Warrior vanilla protein powder. I used half a scoop in an unpictured green smoothie and I definitely liked it more than other protein smoothies/shakes I’ve had. You can still tell it’s protein powder, but it tastes so much better. I’m planning to stir it into some oatmeal tomorrow.

The second package came from a land called Canada and contained 10 Classic Glo Bars!

I’m embarrassed to say how many of these I have eaten since Thursday. I need to start rationing them.

Today I had the opportunity to go to the farmers’ market I went to last weekend again – this time with my dad.

It took us forever to get into the parking area because there was also a high school cross country invitational taking place across from the market. So. Many. Children. Well, high school children. Was I ever that young?

Once we were there, we didn’t stay as long as last weekend but we still got some wonderful food. More baguette, more vegetables, more cheese. We also got some apple cinnamon waffles and maple nut granola. After a trip to Starbucks to caffeinate me (it was early for me), we returned home where I incorporated the waffles and the granola into one of the best breakfasts I’ve had in a long time.

pronounceable ingredients!

Crumbled the waffle and sprinkled the granloa into a bowl of plain Greek yogurt sweetened with a shake of cinnamon.

This was seriously the best combination ever. The chewiness of the waffle, the crunchiness of the granola, the slight tanginess of the yogurt. Perfection.

I kept it local for lunch, too.

Lunch star #1

Best. Idea. Ever. Lunch star #2

paired with my beloved baguette

I could eat this by the spoonful. It would be worth the inevitable stomachache

It took me forever to write this post. I took several breaks to walk the dog, lie down for a bit to get rid of a headache, and eat dinner (full of farmers’ market produce!).

Tomorrow is my last day of summer before fall semester starts. I have all of my books ready. I’m not sure I am, though.

It’s going to be so strange walking around a campus where I don’t know very many people – kind of like freshman year all over again, I guess. I know this is the best thing for me right now, and even though it will take me longer to graduate, I am glad I have an opportunity that many people do not: to go to college. Education is at the root of everything and, like good food, it’s easy to sometimes forget how lucky we are if we have access to it.

I don’t mean to rub my luck in anyone’s face, but I am so thankful to have the opportunity to start over, in a sense. It’s such a relief after the year I had last year, and while I’m certain this year is going to be very different, it will also be (I hope) much better.

</sappy spiel> I don’t know when my next post will be, but I’m hoping to not be too bogged down by work yet to be able to post again within the next few days.

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