Real Food Challenge Wrap Up

In this final week of the Challenge, I reflect on my top five findings and newly found habits:

healthy living

1.  There is always time to workout.  I prefer morning workouts as a motivational way to kick off my days, but if I have a late night or interrupted sleep (i.e. 3-year-old), I make it a priority to do something after work instead.

2.  Variety is key.  Zumba, Jump Board Pilates and Jillian Michaels, in addition to my regular running and walking, gave me something to look forward to and a nice mental and physical challenge.

3.  Fitness & Nutrition play nicely together.  I like the feeling of a great workout, but I really like the feeling of eating nutritiously.  I work out 5 days a week, but I strive to eat healthy every day.  Sure, I allow myself dessert now and then, but I’m more mindful of what I put in my body now.  Cooking at home 98% of the week is important to me.  I want to know what’s in my food and I can only do that by making it myself.  Call it a control thing.

4.  Recipe experimentation.  This, by far, has been the most fun.  Trying new foods, new combinations and different ways of making regular dishes more healthy (i.e. cauliflower “rice”).  It has proven to me that healthy is delicious.

5.  Healthy living is easy.  By making these new habits part of my daily life, life never seems to get in the way any more.  Funny, isn’t it?

Here are a few more delicious recipes we tried this week:

Quinoa with Sweet Potatoes and Kale – This is a delicious fall meal that we enjoy when the sweet potatoes start to hit the grocery stores.  I didn’t have any pesto ingredients on hand this time, so I dressed it with trusty olive oil and red wine vinegar.  It tasted delicious, but I’ll admit the pesto is better.

Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps – This is a wonderful recipe that tastes just as good as the restaurant version without the added preservatives.

I also made two loaves of Oat Bread for toast and sandwiches.  The recipe uses regular white flour, but the rest is simple, using simple ingredients.

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