4/17/09

Earth day


http://www.nativesunjax.com/whatsnew.asp#earthday

I am super excited to help out for Earth day at Native sun. I will be working the Trek store booth, handing out water bottles and encouraging people to "go by bike" and visit the Trek store across the street from Native Sun.
Although Earth Day is on April 22nd, I wanted to take some time to provide some EASY "Earth Day" tips to help keep the earth clean. You don't have to go by a new car, change every lightbulb in your house or remodel your house to be more green. Yes-even you can make a difference with a few small changes.

1) Ride your bike to work, the gym or to a friends house. You don't have to "train" when you ride your bike so, ride like a kid and enjoy the downhills and a little sunshine.
2) Participate in a clean-up day in your town at least once a year. Pick up trash, plant trees or start a flower garden.
3) Grow your own vegetables and fruits.
4) Turn off the TV and enjoy nature. Take a walk in the park, feed the birds, go hiking or invite your friends over and have a picnic.
5) Protect water quality. Don't dump used oil, paint, coolants or other chemicals into the ground, storm drains or garage drains.
6) Buy a water filter and cut back on plastic water bottles. Go to your nearest bike/tri/sport shop and invest in a good re-usable water bottle.
7) Produce less waste. Substitute water-based products whenever possible when buying paints and household cleaners. Or, switch from chemical-type cleaners to natural products like soap and water.
8) Bring your own bags when you grocery shop or re-use plastic bags to pick up after your pets. Too many plastic bags in your house? Use the bags as "lunch-boxes" and start bringing your lunch to work. Every day, Americans spend an extra dollar more for every $10 they spend on groceries to pay for the boxes, bags, and other packaging's that those products come in. Use reusable food containers for leftovers. Finally, cut back on fast food meals.
9) Buy products in bulk or with minimal packaging materials. Re-use and Recycle as much as possible.
10) Open the window shades and enjoy natural light. Don't turn on the lights or AC if you don't need it! You don't need the TV on while you shower and don't forget
to turn off lights when you leave a room.
11) Carpool, walk, use your bike or plan errands to minimize driving. Keep the car tuned and leak-free, and get it inspected regularly. Keep tires properly inflated and dispose of used motor oil and cooling fluids at designated recycling centers.
12) Don't water your sidewalk. Conserve water in and outside the home.
13) Take care of your lawn. Trying to decide what to do with your leaves, grass clippings and garden "waste?" learn about composting and mulching. These natural fertilizers will improve your garden soil’s fertility and will help to retain soil moisture. Keep your lawn 2 inches long and leave your grass clippings where they’re cut.
14) Be aware of how much paper you waste in the home. If you pay bills online, save paper envelopes for coupons. Instead of throwing out a bad print job, use extra paper for scrap paper. Instead of using a whole napkin for every meal, use half a napkin (ex. when eating a salad or something non-messy) or half a paper towel. Use towels and rags, instead of papertowels, for cleaning big messes.
15) Did you know that toilets are the most common source of household water use? A leaking toilet can waste more than 150 gallons per day! You may not see or hear water running, but your toilet may have a silent leak. These leaks are easy to fix with parts from you local hardware store - make the repair and save water and money!
16) Drive smart. First, avoid revving or idling your engine over 30 seconds. Always accelerate gradually, maintain the speed limit and use cruise control on the highway. Avoid waiting in long drive-through lines - turn your car off and go in. Minimize use of air conditioning if you can. Use an energy-conserving grade of motor oil and get regular engine tune-ups, and don’t ignore "check engine" or "service engine soon" lights. Fill your gas tank during cooler evening hours to cut down on evaporation, avoid spilling gas and don’t "top off" the tank.
17) Use less stuff! There are many ways to reduce waste in your home. Use washable utensils and plates instead of throwaway plastic picnic gear. Share magazines and newspapers with a friend, neighbors, a nursing home, hospital or library. Donate used goods such as clothing, furniture and toys to a thrift shop, day care center, charity or second-hand store instead of throwing them out.
18) Conserve energy in your kitchen everyday. Use the right size pot or pan on the stove for the item you’re cooking. Don't preheat your oven except for baking, and cover pots and pans when cooking. Set the refrigerator's temperature to somewhere between 36° and 39° F, and the freezer to somewhere between 0° and 5° F. Make sure to clean the refrigerator coils and switch the refrigerator to its power-miser setting. Finally, turn your water heater down to 120° F.
19) If you only use a few dishes day, wash your dishes and only use the dishwasher when it is full. Your dishwasher uses the same amount of water whether it’s full or just partially full of dishes, so make the most of it. When doing laundry, save energy and use cold water for wash and try to wash full loads. Control the water settings when you wash and if you only have a few items to wash immediately, wash by hand.
20) Did you know that one female cat and her offspring can produce 420,000 kittens in 7 years? Or that one female dog and her offspring can produce 67,000 puppies in 6 years? Every year, between 8 and 10 million dogs and cats enter U.S. shelters. Sadly, most never find homes. Too many animals competing for too few good homes is the most obvious consequence of uncontrolled breeding. Say no to puppy mills!!Can you honestly say that a $800 "purse puppy" is going to show you more love than a dog who was found on the street with no fresh water, food or a place to sleep? Low cost spaying or neutering is a solution to pet overpopulation and is available at most shelters. If you can provide a loving home, attention and give exercise to a pet, go get a rescue animal!
21) Go digital! Save paper and send an email. There is nothing wrong with a nice hand-written letter but pay bills online, stay organized on the computer and avoid printing every piece of information you find interesting on the Internet.

4/15/09

Fiesta Pita and Chickpea burger

Karel has the Athens Twilight Crit coming up next weekend and he is totally feeling the effects of his training. I refuse for either of us to get sick EVER so whenever he tells me he thinks he is getting sick or feeling under the weather I just tell him "NO you aren't!" How supportive.
In all honesty, I try to feed us with loads of nutrients on a daily basis so that we can recover from our workouts, have energy for workouts and keep our immune system healthy. Oh-and of course I want the food to taste good so Karel looks forward to my "creations".
I've been feeding Karel really well this week so that his energy is up and he can feel strong for all his workouts. I am not sure if my recipes will get him a win at his upcoming races but at least he is getting great vitamins and minerals to keep his heart healthy and his muscles (and tummy) happy.
By the way...the recipes are vegetarian friendly but you can add meat if you want.
I had a lot of leftovers from my Fiesta wrap so the chickpea burger uses similar ingredients.

Fiesta Wrap
2 egg whites + 1 whole egg
Corn (about 1/4 cup)
Red beans (about 1/4 cup)
Firm Tofu (about 1/2 cup)
Veggie burger
1/4 Onion sliced
Mushrooms (large handful)
Shredded cheese
Salsa
Pita wrap (found at Hala store, publix or wal-mart)

1. Cook corn, mushrooms, onions and beans in a non-stick pan on medium heat w/ 1 tbsp. olive oil.
2. Heat veggie burger in microwave for 75 sec. Crumble veggie burger into veggie mixture.
3. Add tofu to veggie mixture. Stir everything together and add about 3-4 big spoonfuls salsa to mixture.
4. Turn off burner and cover pan.
5. Toast 1/2 pita in oven or toaster on low heat.
6. Stuff pita with mixture and top with shredded cheese.




Chickpea burger
1.5 cup chickpeas
Fresh parsly (about 2 tbsp.)
Onions (1/4 onion chopped)
Mushrooms (handful)
Red Beans (1/2 cup)
2 egg whites + 1/2 yoke
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
1/4 cup Salsa
1/8 cup whole wheat flour
Pepper
Chili Flakes
Cayenne pepper
1-2 slices whole grain bread or 1/2 bagel
Swiss Cheese
Hummus

1. Heat chickpeas in microwave bowl for 2-3 min. until soft. Use a spoon or clean hands to smush chickpeas.
2. In a big bowl, mix together chickpeas, parsly, garlic, eggs, mushroms, onions, beans and salsa.
3. Add flour and seasonings. Mixture should be like mushy hummus but if mixture is thick, add a little water (about 1-2 tbsp).
4. Pour 1 tbsp. olive oil on a non-stick pan on medium heat. Spoon 2-3 spoonfuls of mixture on pan. Cover burgers and let them cook for a few minutes. Flip when bottom is slightly brown.
5. While burgers are cooking, toast bagel or bread. If using a bagel, toast 1/2 bagel and cut that half lengthwise to give you 2 thin bagel slices (use a serrated knife!).
6. Top each bagel with hummus, burger and 1/2 slice deli swiss cheese.
7. Optional side: Jambalaya rice and stuffed mushrooms w/ rice.






When your vegeterian wife isn't looking, stick a piece of lean meat under the vegetarian burger :) Sneaky Sneaky

4/13/09

Eggs


Seeing that Easter is about the easter bunny, peeps and chocolate....
Just kidding. I guess I've been watching too many commercials and spending too much time in the grocery store.
During my 2 hour run on Sunday I was minding my own business qhwn I started to smell breakfast. I guess one too many houses were preparing Easter morning breakfast and I was getting hungry from the smell of bacon. I guess it wasn't good that I was enjoying the smell of bacon so after my run I ignored my tummy and went for a recovery spin with Karel on our bikes. Luckily, we rode away from the smells of breakfast and I was able to think clearly and plan my recipe for pancakes. Now that is a good vegetarian breakfast..not bacon!
Alongside my pancakes I always like a serving of scrambled egg whites (2 whites, half yoke and skim milk. The other half of my yoke, and 1 egg white, goes into my pancake batter). I started thinking about all the good nutrients in eggs so here are some fun facts about eggs...
1) Eggs contain all the essential amino acids, minerals and vitamins, except Vitamin C. Egg yolks are one of the few foods that naturally contain Vitamin D, as well as good sources of Calcium, phosphorus and Vitamin A.
2) One egg white has 3.6 g protein and .5 grams fat. One egg yoke has 2.7 g protein and 4.5 grams fat.
3) The egg yoke is an excellent source of carotenoids (lutein and its partner zeaxanthin) which are great for your eyes!
4) Egg yolks contain the long-chain omega-3 fatty acid DHA, which is necessary for the brain and proper retinal function in the eye, and the long-chain omega-6 fatty acid arachidonic acid, which is required for the healthy skin, hair, libido, reproduction, growth and response to injury.
5) The color of the egg shell is not related to quality, nutrients, flavor, or cooking characteristics. White shelled eggs are produced by hens with white feathers and white ear lobes. Brown shelled eggs are produced by hens with red feathers and red ear lobes. Bown egg layers usually are slightly larger and require more food, thus brown eggs usually cost more than white eggs.
6) Eggs contain Choline, which is necessary for healthy cell membranes in the body. Choline regulates homocysteine levels (high levels of homocysteine have been linked to coronary heart disease, strokes, dementia in later life, diabetes, osteoporosis and pregnancy problems). Choline has also been to linked with preserving memory.
7) There are around 74 calories in an average egg and 77 calories in a hard boiled egg.
8) Eggs age more in one day at room temperature than in one week in the refrigerator. Eggs can be kept refrigerated in their carton for at least 4 to 5 weeks beyond the pack date.
9)Any food in excess is bad for the body. Eggs (along with other foods) may increase cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease in some people, but moderation is key for everyone. If you are a daily egg eater, aim for 1 whole egg a day and enjoy as many egg whites as you choose.


Fiesta Egg Wrap
2 whole eggs and 3 egg whites (hard-boiled)
3-4 ounces (about half cup) whipped or fat-free cream cheese (softened)
1/3 cup salsa
1/2 cup chickpeas or beans
1/2 cup corn
1 jalapeno or 1/2 pepper (chopped)
1/4 cup shredded cheese
Whole wheat pita bread or wrap

1) In large bowl, mix together eggs, cream cheese and salsa.
2) Add beans, corn and pepper.
3) Spoon 1/4 - 1/3 cup mixture into pita or place mixture on tortilla and roll. Top with a little cheese.