austin lovin.

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I have been to Austin before. I loved it then, and I love it even more now.

So I bet you are all wondering how the whole paleo thing is going while I am on the road. Here it goes…

Although I haven’t been strict paleo yet today, I have been able to come pretty darn close. I splurged and got a latte at the cutest little coffee shop that I happened to stumble upon this morning. Then, I ate fruit – pineapple, honeydew and cantaloupe – and two hard-boiled eggs for breakfast (courtesy of the conference peeps).

For lunch, I listened to the concierge and walked about half of a mile (woo exercise!) to a bustling spot called Annie’s Cafe. As you can see by the yummy pic below, I ate salmon with zucchini, squash and tomatoes. The topping on the salmon was creamy (not paleo), but light. So I am happy with my decision.

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For dinner, I am going to try my best to be good while dining with family. Can’t wait!

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Paleo on the go.

So how difficult is it to stick to the paleo diet plan while traveling for work? I’m about to find out. My plan is simple. I’m going to do the best I can given the circumstances and remember that it’s better to eat something than to skip meals.

And since I was curious, I did a little research on Austin. It turns out there is actually a paleo restaurant a few miles from where I’ll be staying. It’s called Picknik, and the menu looks quite appetizing. Guess who will be trying it out!

The other thing I’ll be missing out on is my weekly tumbling class, so I’ll have to figure out a way to get some exercise in during my stay. I’m sure I’ll make a trip to Town Lake for a run/walk, but I’m also hoping to get in some stand-up paddle boarding or kayaking. More to come on that later…and hopefully I can take some pics to spice up this blog a bit.

My first official day of Paleo

It’s my first official day of starting out the first phase of the Paleo diet. I know it’s only noon, but so far – it’s been great! I decided to phase into the program as suggested in doctor Cordain’s book, which allows a few ‘cheat’ meals throughout the first few weeks to allow your body to adjust more smoothly to the diet transition. I’ve heard some people say that it’s best to just make the switch cold-turkey (pun intended), but I’m a realist. And I know that the realistic expectation of me sticking to the plan is greater if go with the phased approach.

Some advice that was given to me, and that I will pass along:

As with any healthy eating plan, it’s best to think ahead. After all, it’s called a ‘plan’ for a reason. I’m trying to plan my meals ahead of time whenever possible. Some people will spend all of Sunday cooking and packaging meals. For me, “ahead of time” typically means 12-24 hours in advance, which I’m hoping will work too.

So in case you are just dying to know what I’ve planned for the day:

Breakfast

2 eggs (organic) overeasy, 1/2 avocado, 1/4 yellow onion and 2 baby sweet peppers — I fried this all in a skillet, but didn’t use any oil or butter. Instead, I just used a non-stick pan. It worked out quite well, and it was sooo delicious.

Lunch

I’ll call this concoction my very own spinach power salad. It includes: 1-2 cups fresh spinach leaves, 1 serving of walnuts, 1 small apple (diced), 1/2 avocado, 1 1/2 servings lean turkey breast, 2 baby sweet peppers (i love them). The dressing (not paleo, but still healthy in comparison to regular ranch style) is a pomegranate blueberry vinaigrette.

Dinner

Leftover sirloin steak (grass-fed) that was simply seasoned with a bit of pepper and cooked in a grill pan. I used a small amount of EVOO to grease the pan and give the steak those nice ‘grill’ marks.

This is getting to be a lengthy post, so for those of you who want to hear about my fun fitness activities from this weekend, join me here.

For those of you Paleo enthusiasts reading this post: what were your first few weeks on the diet like? What scrumptious recipes did you try?

My First Meal

Okay, okay. Obviously this isn’t my first meal ever. That would be impossible. But it is my first real Paleo meal. So in a way, it’s kind of like a rebirth. Anyhow, it looks delicious – doesn’t it?

It’s almond-crusted pork chops served with a spinach and bacon power salad and gala apple slices. Yum.firstmeal_editedIn my humble opinion (and since this is my blog, that’s the only opinion that counts), it tastes even better than it looks. So for those of you with food envy, here’s the super simple recipe.

Things you need:

  • Thin-cut pork chops (I bought from the organic section)
  • Almond meal (same as almond flour)
  • 1 egg (again, organic)
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 2 slices uncured bacon
  • Handful grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 lemon, squeezed
  • 2 tablespoons EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
  • 1 small apple

How to prepare said things:

Pork Chops

  • Remove any excess fat from pork chops
  • Crack and stir egg into one dish, and place almond meal in second dish
  • One at a time, dip pork chops into egg then coat in almond flour. Place in skillet, and cook on medium-high heat for about 15 minutes, turning once.

Spinach & Bacon Salad

  • Cut bacon into quarter-inch pieces, fry in skillet until crispy. Set aside to cool using paper towel to remove excess grease.
  • Note:  Leave bacon grease in pan for use in cooking pork chops! This gives the pork chops even more flavor.
  • In medium-sized bowl, combine bacon, spinach, grape tomatoes (halved), lemon juice and EVOO. Toss ingredients together.

Apple – Simply cut this into slices to enjoy with your meal!