Oh, hey  there March – leaving so soon? I feel like you just got here!

As usual, another month has come and almost gone. In comparison to others, mine was nice and relaxed in some areas and super busy in others. Overall, a lot of really great progress towards my monthly goals was made, so that’s what I want to talk about today!

Some of these were left until the very last minute, but I managed to get all but one completely conquered. Let’s begin with….

This felt really weird at first, especially since I’ll fully admit to being a cardio junkie! After about a week, I found that I was actually happy to make my treadmill sessions shorter. As a result, I was able to really amp up the intensity and work on speed and hills. I also spent more time in the weight room, and the combo of these 2 changes seems to have done me a lot of good! My weight stayed the same but lean muscle mass went up, and that is super satisfying because I find it very hard to gain muscle. So YAY! I plan to carry on with this cardio/strength time split for the next month, but will gradually be adding more long outdoor runs on Saturdays as the weather warms up. I know my race isn’t until August, but I like to get on these things early!

I just finished this book last night, but not because I was putting it off until the end of the month. Peggy K has got so much wonderful, interesting, and useful info in this book that I actually took notes on it!! It’s broken down into sections for foods that are associated with the following areas:

  • Food – Mood (anxiety, sleep, stress, sex, depression)
  • Food – Weight
  • Food – Beauty
  • Food – Health (immunity, digestion, PMS)

I found the metabolism and stress sections most interesting, but the entire book was a really informative and thorough read. It talks about many foods that you’re probably already familiar with, as well as some that I didn’t even recognize, like ashwaghanda root and holy basil which I learned are both good for stress reduction, among other things.  As I mentioned on Monday, I didn’t hesitate to flip through to the recipes at the back of the book (as in, it was the first section I read) and take a stab at a few. I’m planning to test out a few more in April, particularly the Key Lime Pie with Chocolate Macaroon Crust. Swoooooooon. 🙂

(Source)

Oh taxes, how I loathe thee. This one is almost there, and it’s the only goal that is not complete (nor will it be by March 31st). Earlier this month I hit a bit of a delay because I was waiting for a slip from one of my employers, but I received it last week. Now I’ve done my bit and provided H&R Block with everything they need, so now I’m just waiting for my appointment on April 9th to meet with them and review everything. Fun fun!

Check! Five were improved, re-made, and enjoyed even more than the first time. One of them didn’t have a photo to begin with, but for the rest, these are the before pics:

Here are the makeovers:

Edamame Hummus

Italian 3-Bean Salad – This used to be 4-Bean Salad but when I made it this time, I totally forgot to add the green beans! I kind of like it better this way though.

Haddock and Walnut Rice – re-vamped and re-posted yesterday as my Recipe of the Week.

Moroccan Wild Rice Salad – this one just seems to be a really hard recipe to take attractive photos of! I’m still not satisfied with the photo below but at least it’s better than the one it’s replacing. When I finally get up enough courage to take my camera off of auto and start playing with it, I’ll re-make this one again. Carrots and red bell peppers seem to be my photography nemesis!

The Basic Green Smoothie – I figured that since this recipe is so good that I make it almost every single day, it needed a sexier photo than the one it had before.

Better, don’t you think? I’ll be removing my old recipe page link soon but am working on improving and re-photographing some of the dishes on there that deserve it. Watch for a few new ones popping up on my Recipage soon! (For new readers, you may not be familiar with the old page but don’t worry – the newer version is far easier to navigate!)

Done! Just this week, in fact. You can read the full recap of my first climbing experience in yesterday’s Try Something New Tuesday post, but to sum it up, we had a lot of fun! I’m not sure what ever inspired me to want to try this in the first place – it just seemed like something I should do.

This workout seemed like very good cross training for my 2012 goal of completing 10 chin-ups and 10 pull-ups successfully. I think it would be fun to do an outdoor climb one day, but until then, I’m happy crawling around on indoor walls and working my way up on the route difficulty scale. There are still more than enough climbs to keep me challenged!

Alright, now it’s your turn. Today I want to know…

  • How did you do on your goals for March?
  • Did you have any uber-fantastic, I’m-brilliant, wonderfully amazing achievements? I want to know! Brag about them!
  • Were you feeling a little less than motivated? If so, do you have plans to turn things around in April?