8/24/13

Toasted quinoa and a salad worth remembering


Over the past few years, I've really tried hard to not sweat the small stuff. I use to find it easy to be reactive but very hard to be proactive. In other words, I was always finding myself regretting my actions, getting upset at my mistakes and worrying about things out of my control. Not sure if I had not developed good skills yet for a balanced life or if I was just too busy (thanks to my education from 2000-2011) but I felt rushed in life and never in the moment to slow down and enjoy the minute.

After many years of higher education with my Masters and RD credential, I realized that after all that time-consuming, life-changing hard work, it was time to stop letting life rush by. In order to develop positive thinking, I needed to develop positive actions. From diet to exercise to my every day life, I spent time every day discovering what was important to me to set myself up for a successful tomorrow.

On my ride Friday morning, I was stopped by every stop light as I was doing my intervals and then I got a flat tire. The old Marni would have been extremely frustrated with how the morning was going (especially on a time-crunch) but the new me has learned that even when things are bad, they can always be worse. I was not enjoying my ride any less with the uncontrollables that I was faced with so my best strategy for the morning was to learn the best way to deal with everything that came my way.

The stop lights were a "freebie" recovery during my intervals.
The flat tire was practice for race day in Kona.

And that's it. Just two things that were on my mind that morning that could have turned a great workout into a bad workout but with the right frame of mind, I didn't let myself get into that place. 

REFRAME the thinking: "I'm so frustrated/upset with my workout today!"
"For I am grateful that I have a healthy body that can push hard on the bike and that I have the opportunity to start my morning with a ride."


There's something very special about a meal that is worthy of a picture. Have you ever considered taking pictures of your meals? Whether it is a bowl of cereal with fruit, a delicious garden salad or lasagna, I find that when you appreciate the time and prep (and nutritional value) of your meal before you put it into your body, you are more likely to enjoy the meal and feel satisfied afterward. It's a true shame when you are eating a meal and wishing you were eating something else (and then end up doing so anyways afterward).

Learn to create meals that make you smile. In my opinion, food can be fun, delicious, flavorful and beautiful. You just need to add a little creativity to your kitchen creation.


Mixed greens with peaches, apples, carrots, tomatoes, green peppers, leeks, goat cheese, olive oil, granola, raisins and cottage cheese.


Karel is not much of a quinoa fan (or as I like to say "he hasn't yet learned to appreciate it yet") so I typically just add the quinoa to a stir fry to blend it all in.

One day I decided to "cook" the quinoa kinda like fried rice. I used 1/3 cup cooked quinoa w/ 1 tsp olive oil on medium heat in a skillet and tossed it around a little until it was coated. Every 3-4 minutes I used my spatula to keep it from burning by lightly tossing it around. I cooked it for around 8-12 minutes until it became crunchy with a nutty flavor.

Karel now loves quinoa...toasted. :)