Forging Ahead

Have you ever tried to get a group of people prepared and packed for a car trip? Each member of the party is in their own state of readiness throughout the process. One person may be gung-ho for the journey, have their bags packed three days in advance, have drawn up an itinerary of all the planned stops along the way, including points of interest and rest areas, and created an itemized checklist of all the snacks and other various travel-related necessities required for a smooth and successful road trip. Another person might be a procrastinator who has put off packing their bags until the “We’re leaving in 10 minutes!” call comes. He doesn’t really want to go but is doing so for the sake of family unity. Still another person may have forgotten all about the trip entirely, and one kid in the group always wants to pack something … Continue reading…

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars vs. Procrastination

A few weeks ago, I made some wheat-free chocolate protein bars that I was kind of excited about. They were baked chocolate bars made with almond and brown rice flour, with no added sugar apart from the small amount of coconut and the confectioner’s sugar in the sweet chocolate glaze. Initial reaction from all guinea pigs (um, I mean, “taste testers”) was positive. In my excitement, I shared my victory with a good friend, who several weeks later did something unexpected. She requested the recipe. (Insert radio silence… Insert blank stare of non-recognition.) I had meant to write it down. But, being the procrastinator that I am, I hadn’t gotten to it yet. See, although initially pleased with the outcome, I had discovered that a few days in the refrigerator made the bars dry and unappealing, so I was toying with variations in my mind and had intended to make … Continue reading…

My Body Is An Idiot

I’ve heard it countless times.  “Listen to your body.”  Your body, they say, will tell you what it needs. Craving meat?   Perhaps you’re low on iron or B-12. Have a hankering for pancakes?  You must need some carbohydrates. Need some chili on top of some Indian fry bread, smothered with Tillamook cheddar cheese, black olives, tomatoes, lettuce, and onions?  You obviously miss home and your mother’s embrace. So, if my body is so smart and can tell me what it needs through cravings, why does it always crave chips, chocolate, fat, pasta, and marshmallow pies?  If my body is so smart, it should be craving vegetables, fruit, beans, nuts, and seeds.  That’s all.  No Ho-Hos.  No Rolos or Brach’s caramels.  No maple bars or pecan sandies.  Just salad (naked salad, if it were really smart) and nuts, seeds, and legumes. The only conclusion I can make is that my … Continue reading…

What Are You Doing Wrong?

I remember the moment I stopped reading women’s magazines like Shape, Fitness, and Women’s Health.  I can’t recall which magazine was the culprit, but I remember the article that woke me up.  It described the habits of several women who were doing almost everything according to the prescriptions laid out by these magazines and general consensus about the components of a healthy lifestyle:  diet, exercise, water, etc.  The article dissected their habits to determine shortfalls.  The following is not a direct passage from the article, but an ever-so-slightly exaggerated description: Q:  Roxanne’s kitchen is stocked with fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, salmon, lean cuts of meat, and whole grains.  She exercises daily and drinks plenty of water throughout the day.  She indulges in a cup of green tea when she feels the need to treat herself.  What’s she doing wrong? A:  Roxanne is doing almost everything right, but she’d do better … Continue reading…