Tuesday, March 22, 2011

30 Day Challenge, Day 7 (Scotch Eggs!)

Well, we're rolling into completing our first week of the challenge.  Ballerina and I have been feeling great.  Valedictorian and Actress are tolerating (sometimes only barely) the fact that we have no more breakfast cereal.  I may have to stop buying regular milk, since without cereal, it doesn't get used very fast.

I had a surprising experience this morning.  See, I've been working on increasing my back squats.  Today I was slated to do 20 reps at 105 lbs, before beginning my prescribed wod (workout of the day, for those of you unfamiliar with Crossfit terminology).  I loaded up the bar with confidence -- I had, after all, squatted 20 reps at 95# and three days later 20 reps at 100# just last week.  I was looking forward to seeing that strong lady in the mirror hefting that bar (this, from a woman who has always hated working out where there's a chance someone might see -- Crossfit changes people).

I got in position and started my squats, and realized that I hadn't been squatting low enough last week.  Somehow that escaped my attention...I must have been mesmerized by my own bulging muscles.  So I decided to correct the problem, and break parallel like I've been taught.  Oh man.  I slowly cranked out four squats and nearly blacked out.  I backed up into the rack and set the weight down.  I didn't want to just give up, so I removed 10 lbs and tried again.  I could squeeze out six more, but then I had to stop so I wouldn't faint.  Ugh!  What was happening to me?!

Frustrated and disappointed, I decided to listen to my body and simply proceed to the wod: 10 rounds of 10 kettlebells @40# and 10 toes-to-bar (I realize this is unfamiliar territory for my family, but instead of me listing definitions for everything, you can always ask if you don't understand something).  I figured the entire wod would easily take under 15 minutes.  After the second round, I was seriously considering quitting.  I felt dizzy.  Out of breath.  I had plenty of strength, but all I could do was stare at that bar and say, "No way.  I'm not jumping up there."  I'd lean against the wall and press my face to the nice cold surface, practically praying to it, "Thank you, cement wall.  Thank you for being cold and comforting my 42-year-old body in this time of need."  Then I'd take a deep breath and keep attacking the wod.  I promised myself that if I could make it to five rounds, I'd quit then.  But before I got that far, I vowed I would finish the workout if it took an entire hour.  I've never quit a wod, and I wasn't going to start today.  (Well, okay, there was that one time I stopped and gave up, but that was the morning after I gave blood, and I probably should have taken a rest day that day anyhow.)  I muscled through, fighting my mounting frustration with my sluggish body.  This wasn't a question of strength, but of stamina.  Where was my energy?

Disgruntled with my 28-minute finishing time, I dragged myself to the car and drove home.  I wanted to call Superman and cry.  Or lie.  I was disappointed with myself, and sure that he would be too (which is absolutely ridiculous, because he's never been anything but loving and supportive).  But he's my trainer and he needs to know how my workout went.  So I called and tried to explain what happened.  I didn't get very far before my throat closed off and the tears started.  (*eye roll*  There's no crying in baseball!  Crossfit!)  And then he chuckled.

"You're laughing!"  I sobbed into the phone.

"No.  Not at you," but I could hear him smiling.  Then he proceeded to praise me for correcting my squat technique, and recommended we decrease the squat weight and work back up again, with excellent technique this time.  He further explained that he's seen this in everyone who has ever taken on a Paleo challenge.  As their bodies adjust to using a different kind of fuel, there is a period of sluggishness and dizziness during exercise.  Instead of being disappointed in me (again, ludicrous notion), he lovingly told me how amazing he thinks I am (*blush*).  And I cried some more.  (Oh...did I mention that emotional upheaval is also part of changing up your diet?  Beware.)

Side note:  I love that man.

Food for today:

Meal #1
onion and spinach omelet
fresh squeezed orange juice (from a not-very-juicy orange.  I think I got maybe 4 tablespoons to sip.)

Meal #2

Meal #3
Tuna-stuffed peppers
steamed asparagus

Meal #4
Sweet Potato Curry Apple Soup
Chicken Salad (I forgot I'd need to make mayonnaise, so I ignored the store-bought stuff in the fridge and drizzled olive oil and lemon juice over the salad.  It was pretty good.)

Meal #5
Scotch Eggs (inspired by Mel's recipe, my alterations below.  So. danged. good.)
Sweet Potato and Carrot Hashbrowns (divine!  shredded sweet potato and carrots and onion, fried up in a little bit of coconut oil, sprinkled with Hawaiian ONO salt)

Scotch Eggs
½ T. salt
½ T. chili powder
½ t. fennel seed
½ t. ground black pepper
1 lb. ground turkey
6 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
finely shredded plain coconut

1. Preheat oven to 400 F.

2. Pulse the salt, chili powder, fennel seed and pepper in the blender until the fennel seeds are broken up and powdery.  Mix the ground turkey and seasonings until well-combined (smushing them in a ziploc bag works well and isn't messy).

3. Divide the turkey mixture into 6 equal servings. Flatten the turkey into an even pancake shape, and wrap around a hard-boiled egg, sealing it all the way around and making sure the meat is evenly distributed. This is WAY easier than its sounds. Just roll and lovingly pat it into place.  Roll in coconut shreds to coat.

4. Place the wrapped eggs on a baking sheet and bake about 20 minutes, or until the outsides are nicely browned and starting to crisp.


  1. I'm a long time friend of Danny...I'm happy for HIM and YOU for finding eachother. I'm also liking these receipes...so if you don't mind, I'm gonna "Blog Stalk" ya ;)

  2. Welcome! Thank you, I'm pretty darned happy myself.

    Stalk away! Let me know how you like the recipes. :)