Meal Planning + Base Building

Hello and happy Sunday friends. How have your weekends been?

I have had a crappy weekend as I’ve had a head cold since Thursday night. I’ve had three crappy nights of sleep in a row since I couldn’t breathe through my nose and was waking up with a dry mouth every hour. I finally went and bought a neti pot today despite my initial fear of it and it seems to have helped a bit. I skipped my run with friends this morning due to feeling under the weather and I don’t want to have to skip anymore workouts this week so I’m hoping I’m better asap!

Anyways, I was writing posts to schedule this week and was going to make this into two separate posts but decided to hodge-podge it into one. Especially since I’m sure a lot of people won’t be reading the latter half of this week with American Thanksgiving coming up!

Meal Planning

On Tuesday when Eric and I got home from our trip I made a grocery list and a meal plan. Something I never do! It has been so successful this week I am definitely starting to meal plan regularly.

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I was in a major cooking funk this spring/summer but I’ve quickly realized that all it takes to get me back in the kitchen is cold weather and dark days. I have really been enjoying cooking our meals on a nightly basis this week. Cooking is a great release for me after a long day of work and I find it really relaxing and soothing.

This week I made squash, green bean and mushroom casserole, thai veggie burgers, lentil and olive enchilada’s, and spaghetti and lentil meatballs (the last three were all from the Peas and Thank You cookbook!)

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These were all delicious meals and relatively easy to make. Plus the boys enjoyed them and anyone who lives with boys knows how hard it can be to get them to eat healthy food! Meal planning was so successful this last week I definitely want to keep it up.

This weeks challenge is to meal plan from what’s in the cupboard/fridge as we have enough stuff NOT to make another grocery trip just yet. I think meal planning from the cupboards will be a whole ‘nother challenge!

Base Building

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I have been thinking a lot about marathon training lately. I think one of the biggest mistakes I made during my first marathon training cycle was I basically took five weeks off running (sprained my ankle, went to Europe, got strep throat) and then jumped into marathon training without building much of a base. The very first week of training I went out hard with five runs on deck and by the end of that week I was feeling a tweak in my shin – the very first week of training.

This time around I’m doing things differently. And one of those things is building up a decent base before starting to train. My mileage has been low since I ran the half-marathon in October and the last two weeks it’s been laughable. We went to Orlando and I didn’t run for five days. Then I got sick this past week and didn’t run for five days. Bah.

I have until January 2 before my training cycle actually starts, so my biggest goal is spending the next six weeks building up a solid base. I want to climb back up to running 20ish mile weeks comfortably. I also want to focus on strength training and building a strong core and upper body.

One thing I discovered when I was training for my sub-2 hour half was figuring out my training plan week-to-week worked better for me then having it all mapped out ahead of time. Usually on Sunday’s I would sit down and write my running + cross-training plans for the week in my life planner.

So today I mapped out the long runs for the next six weeks and I will figure out the shorter mid-week runs as I go. I want to do 8 miles, 9 miles, 10 miles, 11 miles, 8 miles, 10 miles (starting with 8 next weekend on the 26 or 27). I’m hoping that this will allow me to start my marathon training cycle feeling strong and prepared!

This is also making me feel better about barely running the last two weeks…I’m determined to come back strong this week!


Questions of the day: Have you ever used a neti pot? Do you meal planning? Any advice or thoughts r.e. base building?

19 Responses

  1. Kelly says:

    Haha… so yes- Eric and I have a neti pot, actually we have 2 because it just didn’t seem like something we wanted to share (even though we put it in the microwave to get rid of any remaining germs). The first time I used it I was laughing so hard it didn’t work- I mean seriously that thing is RIDICULOUS, but at times it really is the best thing. Eric has had the worst cold for the past week, and I’ve been really trying hard to fight it. I’m going to be less than thrilled if I’m sick for Thanskgiving! I hope you feel better soon!

    Eric and I do meal plan dinners before we go to the grocery store, it’s helpful but I still hate doing it, and grocery shopping haha. Also, this is the one area in which we are not twins- I never find cooking relaxing and I only do it out of necessity because if I ordered out every night I wouldn’t be healthy. Luckily Eric actually likes cooking (though not necessarily after a long day of work) so most of the nights I have what he is cooking especially now that he is being a lot healthier 🙂

  2. Lisa of Lisa's Yarns says:

    I am glad the netipot wasn’t scary for you. It had helped me!

    You made lots of delish foods this week. Yum. The boys are lucky!! I do meal planning differently because I am single… I just make one big meal on sat or sun to have for lunches. And then in the evenings I eat things like baked potatoes or a cam o soup – things most men would never consider a ‘meal’!!

  3. Holly says:

    I’ve never used our neti pot but I just might have to try it – I’ve had the WORST cold for almost three weeks now and it’s driving me nuts. Maybe it’s time to get over my fear of the neti pot! Nathan’s used it and he says it’s weird, but it works – I’ll have to microwave it to get rid of the germs 🙂

    We’ve been planning meals ever since we got married – well, I say “we” but I really mean “me”, since I do it – and make the grocery list – and do most of the cooking – at least we usually grocery shop together 😀 Some weeks it’s a real pain to sit down and do it but I find it saves SO much money when we shop (less wasted food!) – and it saves a lot of time when I don’t have to think about what we’re having for supper when I get home from work. I just look at the chart on the fridge and start cooking!

  4. Caz says:

    I have a neti pot but I definitely don’t use it as much as I should. It makes a difference though!

    I also meal plan -mostly because I’m so busy I need to know the nights I’ll be home to cook or not. With the organic veggie box every other week I need to meal plan to use up the veggies or I’ll have random things languishing in my fridge that I’ll never eat.

  5. Stephany says:

    I find it so much less stressful and easier to eat healthy meals when you meal plan. That said, I have been TERRIBLE about it lately. I just get lazy and don’t want to do it. But it is so much easier to grocery shop when you have a list of meals to eat the following week and what to buy for them.

  6. Meal planning is going to be a must when S.D. and I finally move in together. Up where he lives, it’s a lot more isolated-therefore if we don’t plan ahead we’ll end up be taking long trips unnecessarily for each meal. Besides. I am definitely someone that kind of needs a plan. I’m going to find a nice magazine that has 30 day meal plans and subscribe just so I’ll always have some kind of backup for ideas.

  7. Melissa says:

    All those meals look so yummy! I think meal planning is something I’ll enjoy doing once I’m done school and have more time in the evenings to actually cook. For now I’m stuck doing homework and whatnot. Ah well! I’ll have to count on my mom’s cooking for a few more years as a regular thing 🙂

  8. Leigh says:

    I made the thai veggie burgers tonight for the first time! What did you think of them?

    It has been so hard to run here lately…it was -16C (without the wind chill) here this weekend, so I had no desire to run. Plus with it getting dark by the time I am home, I don’t feel very excited to lace up and go for a run in the dark. It’s supposed to be back up into the +’s this week, so I am thinking there will be a few lunch runs done 🙂

    • MissAmber says:

      I love them!! I have made them 3 or 4 times since getting the cookbook and I think they are my favourite recipe so far. The boys just thought they were ‘meh’ though and the lentil meatballs were their favourite so far 🙂

  9. AshleyD says:

    I just found this website today and it sounds perfect for what you’re looking for. You just check off which foods you have in your fridge/cabinets and it gives you a recipe!

  10. Ris says:

    Although I’m not the cook in the house, I am a huge fan of meal planning. Each Sunday before we go to the store I sit down with my favorite cookbooks and plan out a few things. I glance through the cupboards to see what we already have and what we still need. Then I write out the list and glance through my coupons to see what I have a coupon for. The whole thing takes 20-30 minutes but it’s SO worth it to not have to worry about it on the weekend, and to not have to throw something together or go to the store after work. It saves my sanity!

  11. Nicole says:

    I have never used a neti pot but my hubby has and he says it is great.

    Hubby does our meal planning. It definitely helps with saving time and money when cooking during the week. The only problems is when cravings strike you sometimes just have to eat what you have planned so the food doesn’t go to waste.

    Also love the crockpot!!

  12. Caroline says:

    I think a building a base is really important, but it’s equally important not to go overboard and build too much, leading to burn out and injury. I think I was closer to the later. I had a week off between my half marathon and when marathon training started and I felt worn down at day 1! As a result, the first three or four weeks of training, involved more resting than anything else.

  13. Jen says:

    I LOVE my neti pot. I put it on my Christmas list last year, and my oh-so-romantic boyfriend got it for me; seriously, I think it was my favorite gift, and the one that seriously keeps giving. The past two weeks, I have been using it daily — sometimes twice a day — to fight off a head cold and sinus infection. It just helps me feel better, and I knew the day that it didn’t work I had to call the doctor because my infection was severe.

    As for meal planning, I agree it is incredibly helpful, but I don’t do it as regularly as I should. I used to be really good about planning meals each week, mixing tried and true favorites with new recipes. Then our plans would always change and I’d end up throwing food away because we never got around to some of the planned meals. Now I sorta mix winging it with meal plans. I haven’t felt extremely motivated or inspired in the kitchen lately, which could have something to do with it. I need to go back to trying one new recipe a week.

  14. Heather says:

    Im doing the exact same thing. I won’t actually start training for anything until next month, so I’m really only worried about a base now. I have tried to plan out my training plans all at once and found when I don’t complete a run bc something case up, I’m hard on myself. I take Monday morning to look and see what the week looks like before writing anything down

  15. Meal planning makes a HUGE difference! It helps me not spend as much on groceries either.

  16. Sorry to hear you had a head cold … I hope it is gone now!

    I have always wanted to try a neti pot, but I have never took the plunge and bought one. I am also a little scared about how it would feel.

    I always meal plan, but it hasn’t been too fun lately. I haven’t had the time to cook new and interesting meals. Luckily, I am 1 week away from having a lot more free time.