Roasted Veggie & Chicken Stew

Hello, hello!

Can you believe that Christmas is right around the corner?!

I was out doing some last minute Christmas shopping and I came across this.

I just had to have it!

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So, I bought it. 🙂

Hey, surely I’m not the only person in the world who’s done that?

I am?

Oh.  Well. Don’t judge me.

Anywho, it’s been a super busy physical week for me.

Raked 28 bags of leaves on Monday, smashed my fingers for good measure, 5 1/4 mile tempo/hill run on Tuesday, 9 miles on Thursday + a 3 mile walk through the park with Thing 2, and another 3 mile walk in the park with my sailor yesterday.

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I was supposed to do 20 miles this morning.

Um, no.

I twisted my foot a little on Thursday and, after yesterday’s walk, there was no way my foot was going to hold up. It’s not swollen but it’s definitely stiff. It’s been healing pretty well since I did whatever to it back a few months ago but I don’t want to take any chances.

So, I’m resting it and I’ll jump back on the mileage on Monday.

I’m feeling more confident about being able to finish the marathon but I certainly can’t go into it with a hurt foot.

I’ve been so hungry this week!

And, really tired. Holy cow, am I getting a ton of sleep!

And totally craving veggies!

So, I made up a dish with some yummy roasted veggies, rotisserie chicken, and black beans.

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Om nom nom!

Roasted Veggie & Chicken Stew

1 rotisserie chicken, pulled apart and bones discarded (or, roast your own chicken and shred that bad boy up)
1 sweet potato, cut into wedges
2 red bell peppers, cut into chunks
handful of baby carrots (as many as you want)
1 small red onion, cut into quarters
1 small yellow onion, cut into quarters
5-10 garlic cloves, NOT peeled (I love garlic so I used 10. You may not love garlic as much as me. Fine. Remove the papery coating but don’t peel the cloves)
Olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup chicken broth
fresh rosemary, thyme and sage (aka the poultry blend)

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1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place sweet potato, bell peppers, carrots, onions, and garlic on large, rimmed baking sheet. Toss with olive oil and salt and pepper. Roast for 45 minutes. Let cool slightly.

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2. Shred rotisserie chicken into a large Dutch oven and add black beans.

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3. Toss with roasted veggies and chopped herbs. Add broth (up to a cup) and heat over medium-high heat for about 15 minutes, until heated through and seasonings mesh. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired.

4. EAT!

Question: Sweet potatoes – yum or yuck?

Birthday … burpees??? Eat the Bowl Bean Salsa

Hello! It’s Wednesday!

hooray wednesday!

Okay, honestly, that cat has way more energy than I do right now. You see, I went to CrossFit last night.

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Brutal workout. The “filthy 40” in honor of one of the coaches’ 40th birthday. I prefer to celebrate my birthday with wine and cake. He clearly prefers to punish people. With burpees.
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And other things. Like kettlebell swings.

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Then, for some reason, I thought it was a good idea to get up before any sane person this morning and go to CrossFit AGAIN. 12 hours later. What’s wrong with me? #canyousayaddict

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More burpees. Yay.

You’re probably wondering what an MU is. Muscle up.

Yeah.

*sigh* I miss running. But, you know what? I LOVE CrossFit! I really do! One day, I’ll post a video of me doing a muscle up. One day. It might be a while so don’t hold your breath waiting. You will definitely perish. That would be bad.

With all this extra CrossFit I’ve been doing, I need to make sure I’m getting plenty of protein to help repair my muscles. Plus, protein will help heal my muscle strain so I can get back out the door and run! And yes, CrossFit helps too because it’s building strength. Most muscle strains that derive from overuse injuries are usually caused by a strength imbalance and a lack of stretching. So, I’m building strength, making sure I stretch and gobbling up protein!

I found this recipe in my Abs Diet Cookbook. It’s essentially a salad/salsa that you eat out of a red pepper bowl. I. Love. Red. Pepper. LOVE. Super easy, yummy, healthy and a change-up in your lunchbox! Of course, you could serve this at dinner time, too so don’t feel like it’s only a lunch food. I’ve paired it with some additional protein – tuna – and some more veggies because, well, veggies are good. You could certainly add some avocado or guacamole to this dish if you have it. Om nom nom!

Guacamole – yay or nay?
Is it just me or is everyone tired today?

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Eat the Bowl Bean Salsa
makes 2 servings

1 can (15 ounce) black beans, rinsed and drained
2 medium tomatoes, diced
2 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (you can certainly sub parsley if you’re not a cilantro fan)
salt
2 large red bell peppers

1. Mix the beans, tomatoes, orange juice concentrate, and cilantro in a small bowl. Season with salt. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.

2. Slice the top off of the peppers and scoop out the core and the seeds. Fill with the bean mixture. Gobble it up.

Per serving:
Calories 282; Fat 2.4g (saturated .1g); Sodium 669mg; Protein 14.7g; Carbohydrates 49.4g

– jennifer

Just waiting for the phone to ring. The Italian Rabe

Holy sore muscles, Batman! Boy oh boy, am I feeling that P90X chest, shoulders, and triceps workout I did yesterday! I didn’t really realize it until I went to dry my hair this morning. Oy! Holding my arms up and working the dryer and the round brush was exhausting. Haha! I’m glad I’m resting those muscles today – they’ll be a little more agreeable when I get back at it on Thursday morning. 🙂

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So, I visited the doctor yesterday. In his opinion, I should be a doctor because he believes my self-diagnosis of a muscle strain is spot on. Um, I can’t afford medical school so….maybe I’ll pass on that but it was nice to hear that I’m pretty smart about what’s going on with my body. Sometimes, that’s the hardest part. Aches and pains can pop up out of nowhere so you want to make sure you pay attention when you notice something different. I keep a training log and try to write all of that stuff down. Of course, sometimes I forget, and then I end up in this predicament where I’m injured and I haven’t a clue what I did to get here. Don’t be like me – make sure you write it down every day! Besides, it’s a great way to track fitness improvements and it sure is nice to have that log to go back and read over and see just how awesome you really are. 🙂

Anyway, my next step is physical therapy. I’m not running until again until I meet with the therapist and, as much as that hurts my heart, I know it’s for the best. So, fingers crossed I get the call from physical therapy in a hurry (again, military medicine is not known for it’s quickness) and I can get going on my rehabilitation. Also, my doc didn’t indicate that he thought a September 1st race was going to be out of the question but, that’s something I’ll need to really discuss with the physical therapist. Do you think if I stare at my phone long enough, they’ll call?

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Dinner!

I’ve really been working my “New Abs Diet Cookbook” lately. It seems to have inspired me and, there are loads of recipes that just serve 2 and some that just serve 1 (lunches and breakfasts)! Of course, this recipe I made most recently serves 6 but that just means leftovers for lunch or those nights later in the week when you do not feel like cooking. Most leftovers don’t last longer than 5 days in the fridge so, if you make more food than you have people, the best way to make sure the leftovers disappear is by putting them in individual containers. That makes grabbing lunch on the way out the door the next morning so much easier and much more likely to happen. I’m up before the sun anyway and I generally have time to prep my lunch box but, sometimes I hit snooze one too many times and then I’m rushing around like a chicken with my head cut off. Not fun. So much easier if I’ve already planned lunch and it’s ready for me to grab without any fuss!

Anyway, this recipe is easy, super fast, and delicious. The hardest part is the broccoli rabe. For me, the hardest part was finding it. I had to go to 4 stores before I finally found it at the Fresh Market. Not sure why I didn’t just go there in the first place. I’m shaking my head at myself. Anyway, you want to make sure you rinse the rabe really well. I trimmed off all the stems and then put the bunch in a strainer in the sink and gave it a good rinse, tossing with my hands. Then, I shook it out, put it back on the cutting board, cut it into the 2-inch chunks the recipe calls for and put it back in the strainer for another rinse. For some reason, that stuff is gritty and you don’t want to eat that. Blech! Once that was done, the rest of this came together lightning fast. Another perfect and healthy choice for dinner at the end of a long day. Win!

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The Italian Rabe
makes 6 servings

1 bunch broccoli rabe, tough ends trimmed
12 ounces orecchiette pasta (I used mini bowties (farfalle) because I think they’re cute!)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound hot italian turkey sausage links
2 cups marinara sauce
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup grated romano cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1. Cut the broccoli rabe into 2-inch pieces. Cook the orecchiette pasta according to package directions; add the broccoli rabe during the last 3 minutes of cooking. Drain.

2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Toss in the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes or until translucent.

3. Remove the casing from the sausage. Add the meat to the skillet and break up the chunks with a wooden spoon. Cook for 3 minutes until nicely browned.

4. Add the pasta and broccoli rabe to the skillet and toss to combine. Stir in the marinara sauce and red pepper flakes and cook until heated through. Sprinkle with the cheeses.

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Per serving:
Calories 400; Protein 18g; Carbohydrates 52g; Fat 14g (saturated 2.5g); Fiber 4g; Sodium 720mg