Hey lovelies!

How are you doing? I hope your day has been awesome so far. I’m super excited to tell you about one of my new experiences from yesterday, so let’s just jump straight in, shall we?

1. Recipe of the Week: This week’s featured recipe is a revision of one that was left behind on my old (pre-Recipage) recipes page, and it definitely deserves to be highlighted because it’s delicious! As you’re probably aware, I love fish, especially salmon and nice ‘meaty’ white fish.  This dish totally fits the bill, with haddock being the protein superstar. May I present to you, the newly re-vamped (yet very, very simple and easy to make) Haddock and Walnut Rice.

Not only does this recipe only require a few ingredients (most of which you probably have in your kitchen already), but you’ll only need one pot, one pan, and a maximum of 45 minutes to prepare it – and most of that time is inactive because you’ll be cooking the rice!

2. Teriyaki Seaweed Snacks. I know, I know, after yesterday’s post about the awesome nutrition benefits of sea veggies, you guys probably think I’m going to turn into a piece of seaweed. But hear me out on this one! If you’re the type that craves salty over sweet and crispy over creamy, this might just be the low-calorie, healthy-at-the-same-time snack for you.

I first tried regular, unflavoured seaweed snacks back on Try Something New Tuesday 75 and thought they were kind of interesting. They certainly taste ‘green’, but not in a gross, I-just-yanked-this-out-of-the-ocean way. My new Yamamotoyama teriyaki ones (from Stash, the same company that makes the tea you’re probably familiar with), were even better than the originals.

Inside the bag (which cost about $4.50) were a 18 packets with 5 crispy seaweed bits in each. Two packets of 5 pieces clock in at 10 calories, zero fat and sugar, and 35g sodium. In terms of cash, these ones were much better value for money than the single serving snack packet I bought, which i believe was $1. They’re not exactly the snack you’d want to pick before an intense workout or if you’re really hungry, but if you’ve just got a snack craving for a little sumthin’ sumthin’, I think you should give these a try.

3. Rock Climbing!!! One of my goals for March, and for 2012 in general, was to try rock climbing for the first time. This almost didn’t happen this month because my work buddies and I had to keep rescheduling, but I’m pleased to announce that yesterday was our first climb! After work, we headed to a local climbing gym that one of my friends recommended. The session we booked included 2 hours of guided climbing with one of their trained volunteer staff climbers to show us how it’s done.

Prior to investigating this, I didn’t even know that rock climbing gyms existed! I’m not sure where I thought rock climbers developed their mad skills, but now I know! Inside the gym, there was a great big boulder-like structure in the middle which, not surprisingly, is used for bouldering.

Don’t have a clue what bouldering is? That’s ok, because neither did I. Basically it’s just like the rock climbing that we were about to do with ropes, only without the ropes. If you fall, well, you fall to the ground. By contrast, with the climbing we did, the rope and your ‘belayer’ are always there to catch you. But more about what belaying is in a minute. Around the perimeter of the gym were a bunch of routes plotted up each wall with rocks and coloured tape. All of the ‘routes’, which go from the floor to the ceiling, have ratings. The easiest ones are 5.4, and if I remember correctly, the toughest were 5.13.

Our guide (who was super friendly and helpful) stayed with us the whole time because in order to climb on our own, we’d need to be trained on how to belay for another climber. If you’re as new to climbing as I am, belaying for another person just means that you’re keeping them safe by controlling the locking rope at ground level. One end of the rope is attached to the climber’s harness, and the other end to the belayer’s harness. This way, if the climber slips or loses grip, they won’t come down crashing to their doom because the belayer can stop the fall by making the rope lock. I was quite happy to have an expert do this for me! We started with 2 climbs that were rated 5.4, and these seemed pretty manageable to me. As the ratings got higher, the rocks became either 1) smaller, or 2) further apart.

I’ve never really had a fear of heights, so I wasn’t too worried about that part. The bit that concerned me was being able to pull myself up, but I was told that rock climbing is just as much about upper body as it is about lower body strength. To my delight, it did feel like a fairly balanced upper/lower body workout. I tried to use my legs as much as possible, and I guess I was doing something right because I managed to master a 5.7 climb! This seemed quite impressive considering it was my first time, but I’m itching to try a tougher one now!

Despite my efforts to use as much leg power as possible, after about an hour of climbing, my forearms and fingers were getting pretty tired. We called it quits there, but I’m already addicted to this! I’m not feeling too sore in the muscles this morning, but won’t be surprised if I start feeling some stiffness later today. Overall, the staff at the climbing gym were super helpful and seemed happy to stand around belaying and chatting with us while we took turns Spiderman-ing around on the walls. I’ll definitely be going back!

Finally, I’ll finish off with my questions for today:

  • Have you ever tried rock climbing? What did you think?
  • If you like seaweed snacks, what flavours are your favourite? I also saw wasabi ones while I was shopping, but I’m not super keen on wasabi so teriyaki seemed like a better choice. My bag is almost gone!
  • Did you do anything new this Tuesday?

Ok, off to work I go, and you should probably hop to it as well! Remember to smile, laugh lots, sit up straight, drink lots of water, and have a fantastic day! :)

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