Ummmm… expecting chocolate? Yes, Valentine’s Day is this week. And, I delivered a salad with oranges and yellow beets. Ha… the ingredients aren’t aphrodisiacal, too. Well, I have other thoughts on my mind. Such as establishing a workout regime in my schedule. I shamefully stopping working out sometime in 2012, and I had the audacity to indulge in any and all pastries without guilt (ohhh… chocolate cake, where are you now?). Last year was an extremely good year, and we celebrated hard. The down side to the happy time, is a first-time in my life struggle with extra weight gain. And, it’s not a happy sight to see… or feel. Damn be anyone who tells me to love my body the way it is. I refuse to accept it, if I’m not working out.
Here’s my excuse: I had two separate foot injuries, dealt with a difficult cough the first few months of 2012, started a new job and running bored me. This week, I finally joined a gym. Instead of being mad at myself for stopping my workout routine, I ended my first day of class by saying, “I’m proud of you.”
Returning to exercising is hard and humbling. That first class was… whew! Despite feeling proud of finally joining a gym, I’m disappointed at my inability to complete a class without stopping for breath. The saleslady fitting new gym shoes for me, emphasize the importance of taking the initial workouts slow. The boyfriend reminds me the first few weeks are expected to be hard, and he encourages patience. Pretty soon, I’ll zip through the routines without stopping for a breath. Breathe in. Breathe out… one day, when?
I have no idea how long it will take to get back in shape. I feel fortunate my dietary habits are okay. Yep, just okay. It could be better, but my craving for sweets is why I’m short of having an almost perfect diet. At this time of year, cravings for sweets are calmed with citrus fruit.
Whether it’s grapefruit, pomelos, valencia, moros, clementines, satsumas, minneolas, honey tangerine, cara cara or tangelos, I love tasting all varieties of citrus fruit available from December to early March. It’s actually better to use oranges instead of tomatoes in salads, because tomatoes during the winter months are only flavorful when they’re canned. The other sweet winter produce are beets, one of the many abundant root vegetables during the colder months. Combining oranges with yellow beets is a delightful combination–in flavor and color, and savory kalamata olives and oregano balances the sweetness of a dish. It’s also a salad to soothe a craving for baked goods… an important factor when trying to improve dietary habits.
Whether it’s grapefruit, pomelos, valencia, moros, clementines, satsumas, minneolas, honey tangerine, cara cara or tangelos,…
Honestly, there’s always room for tips to improving my diet, but it’s generally healthy. For the ultimate health, our bodies need at least four days a week of exercise (or follow the doctors directions). Last year was full of excuses resulting in more than weight gain: Stairs being difficult to climb, increase acne, body feeling bloated, knockout headaches, sudden mood swings, loss of inner core strength and decrease positive attitude. If you’ve never or dislike working out… good heavens, your body is in for a special treat.
As mentioned earlier, towards the end of my first exercise class, I privately said, “I’m proud of you.” It’s a positive and encouraging thought for the goal of a better health. For Valentine’s Day, I’m the first person to tell anyone to eat more chocolate, because it’s full of Vitamin C. This year, use Valentine’s Day as an excuse to show thy body some love by working out. And, continue eating more citrusy salads, because oranges have more Vitamin C than chocolate.
Is working out part of your lifestyle? Share an encouraging tip in the comment section below. Still learning how to make exercise part of your lifestyle? What’s your excuse?
1 naval or cara cara orange
1 to 2 yellow or red beets
2 tsp. of minced shallots
1 tsp. kalamata olives
2 tsp. minced, fresh oregano (try it with fresh mint, too)
Sea salt and fresh black pepper; to taste, but keep it light