I can’t believe it’s February already – January flew by and Chicago treated us to a somewhat mild month (compared to previous January averages). This means that sticking to my resolutions of treating my body with kindness through regular exercise and nutritious food was a lot easier. While most of my running happened on the treadmill, I was lucky enough to get outdoors a couple of times in milder (see: foggy) weather to train. And it felt so. damn. good.
In January I managed to stick to my five workouts a week (although my Fitbit tracked 7 active days a week for all four weeks). The fact that I discovered ClassPass only helped me reach my workout goals, allowing me to try out a few of the local yoga and barre studios – I even tried a boxing class! When I wasn’t loading up my ClassPass, I was going for outdoor runs or doing HIIT workouts in my apartment gym.
I did experience a bit of shell shock when I went to my first yoga class since early summer of last year. As someone who has always been fairly flexible (a tumbler in cheerleading and an inconsistent yogi), I was absolutely dumbfounded when I struggled through downward dog. Admittedly, these past six months I’d spent more time on circuit training, running and weight lifting in preparation for the wedding reception. As a result, my yoga practice had completely fallen to the wayside. This month I’m planning to change this completely by getting back to what truly makes my heart sing: regular yoga. I have committed to the Yoga By Candace 30 Day Yoga Fit challenge for the month of February (into the first couple days of March). As my chosen pose, I am going to try to get back to baby grasshopper pose – currently, I can’t even raise the “lifted” leg off the floor. But practice makes perfect, right?
As for stats comparing last month to this month, they aren’t that stellar. While I’ve spent (at least) five nights a week preparing healthy, hearty meals, and working out consistently, I’ve only lost about 5 lbs.
At first this number really frustrated me. I wanted to lose those 10 lbs of deep dish immediately – I questioned what was wrong with me and my body. Then I remembered why I’m on this journey and it’s not to criticize or compare my body to others’, it’s to remember that everything takes time – loving your body included. And I couldn’t think of a better way to build my body confidence and mental health than through practicing yoga often. It is the one exercise that makes me feel better immediately, giving a sense of strength and intention after every session. What’s better than that?
For this month of loooooove, I am going to continue practicing self love – with daily yoga and running outdoors – two activities that really make my heart sing. Stay tuned for month two’s update!
In January I spent quite a bit of time in the kitchen becoming acquainted with healthy cooking. A lot of it was trial and error but the following recipe did not disappoint. Not only is it my most-liked Instagram photo of the year (so far), it’s also absolutely delicious. Packed with veggies, this Sheet pan Buddha Bowl with tahini sauce by Yummy Mummy Kitchen gives you all the best ingredients – and it’s vegetarian and gluten free.
Here’s the Yummy Mummy Kitchen recipe:
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch wedges
- 1/2 purple cabbage, cut into wedges
- 2 red potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch wedges
- 1 small butternut squash, peeled and 1/2 inch diced
- 16 oz. Brussels sprouts, halved
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt to taste
- all purpose seasoning blend (I used Trader Joe’s Everyday Seasoning)
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1/2-1 teaspoon honey
- 4 eggs
- 2 avocados, peeled and sliced
- fresh parsley for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Coat the bottom a large sheet pan (or two smaller pans) with cooking spray or olive oil. Place the vegetables in a single layer on the sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and seasoning. Roast vegetables for 40 minutes or until tender. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
- Meanwhile, cook the quinoa. In a small-medium saucepan, bring 1 3/4 cups of water and the quinoa to a simmer. Add a pinch of salt, reduce the heat to low, and cover. Simmer covered for 15 minutes or until water has been absorbed and quinoa is cooked. Fluff with a fork.
- Make the tahini sauce. In a small bowl, whisk together tahini, lemon juice, mustard, and honey until smooth. Poach or fry eggs.
- To assemble the buddha bowls, spoon quinoa into bowls. Arrange roasted veggies on top. Add avocado, eggs, and parsley. Drizzle tahini sauce over.
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook time: 45 mins
Total time: 55 mins