I officially have 14 days left of summer vacation and I plan on enjoying them to the fullest! I started today with one of my favorite breakfasts, almond butter and banana on toast, topped with cinnamon, of course. If you’ve never tried cinnamon with this sandwich you MUST.TRY.IT.NOW! (Sorry I have no picture, but I’m sure you can picture this one…)
Next, I headed to Healthworks. I’ve been enjoying leisurely passing my mornings there and will miss them when school starts in two weeks. Before leaving for the gym, I did a 20 minute ab video on Exercise TV: Incredible Abs 2. I find a lot of videos to be too easy, but these videos always kick my butt! At the gym, I did 30 minutes of ellipticalling and a 30 minute tempo run. I’ve really noticed that my speed has really improved in the last few months. The way to become a faster runner? Run faster for little spurts and it will show in your longer runs! After running, I spent a good 15 minutes foam rolling my tight IT bands and stretching. I find that stretching and rolling really help keep my hip and knee problems in addition to my achilles tendonitis at bay.
On my way home from the gym, I swung by the Apple store to pick up my Macbook, which was there for a new keyboard. It wasn’t until I was without my computer for a few days that I realized how much I depend on it and the connection it offers me to e-mail, blogs, and any bit of information I need to know in the moment.
I came home ready for lunch. I had seen a barley and chickpea salad at Whole Foods a long time ago and wanted to recreate it. I started by making some bulgur. I used 1 cup of chicken broth (for flavor) and 1/2 cup of bulgur. I brought it boil, then let it simmer for until the bulgur soaked up all of liquid and had a nice soft and chewy texture.
Then, I chopped tomatoes, red onions, and bell pepper.
Then I opened up, rinsed, and drained cans of quartered artichokes and chickpeas.
While I was doing prepping, I also roasted some asparagus. I prepared it by spraying the pan with some olive oil, and then spraying the asparagus with olive oil (real olive oil, not Pam) and sprinkling it with salt and pepper. I gave the pan a good roll to coat all of the asparagus. While waiting for the bulgur and asparagus to finish cooking, I sipped on some peach tea.
Next, I went out to the backyard to pick some basil off of my thriving basil plant. Can you believe that two weeks ago, this thing was anemic?!
Soon, the bulgur and the asparagus were done.
I put heaping spoonful of bulgur into my bowl and topped it with about a tablespoon of store-bought pesto:
Then I added about a half cup of chickpeas, 6 or 7 bits of artichoke hearts, the peppers, tomatoes, red onion, and chopped basil.
Gave it a good mixing and voila!
A delicious, summery meal that incorporates whole grains, protein, vegetables, and healthy fat.
For dessert I had a small bowl of cherries, crisp green grapes, and blueberries.
The agenda for the rest of the afternoon includes some house cleaning, piano playing, and wedding TV shows on my DVR!