Inspiration comes in many forms. Art. Music. Pinterest. Chocolate milk. It can all give you a little extra oomph in something you’re trying to accomplish.
This week, my inspiration (other than Pincrastination) was: salad.
Good ole, healthy for you, comes in all varieties salad. I’ve mentioned on here that I’m trying to eat healthier, work out more (or just work out) and lose a few pounds here and there. But I often struggle with my innate ability to be a) hungry all the time or b) eat inordinate amounts of chips/salsa, pizza and cheeseburgers, and secret option number c) be more interested in watching the Real Housewives of New Jersey then doing 30 minutes of anything that makes me sweat.
But, I’ve been doing better, and was recently inspired by this post from Can You Stay For Dinner, a healthy living blog. It basically lays out all the different options salad can give you for a healthy lunch. My lunches usually consisted of PB&J, leftover pizza slices, dinner leftovers, or a quick run to the Union Chick-Fil-A. This did not go over well when I had afternoon classes. Nor did it make my Weight Watchers iPhone app happy.
So, I took up a challenge. Go one week with only salad for lunch and see how it felt. I like salad, I don’t LOVE salad, but I felt like I could try it out. I love variety, and canNOT stand to eat the same thing everyday, so I loaded up on options that would trick my brain into thinking it was getting something different.
Here’s how it went down:
Monday (no picture): regular garden salad (arugula, cucumber, red/orange/green bell pepper, pine nuts, sesame seeds and balsamic vinaigrette.
- Expectation: boring-ville
- Reality: not too bad, had a lot of it and it kept me pretty full, but definitely wouldn’t enjoy eating it everyday
- Expectation: will pick out the sweet potatoes and only dip extra pita bread I brought in green goddess dressing
- Reality: very good! The sweet potatoes weren’t so bad, and the mixture with the green goddess dressing was salty/sweet and chicken helped fill me up even more
Wednesday: super greens, black beans, taco cheese, tomato, sour cream and taco shells; we made tacos the night before, hence the taco salad
- Expectation: will LOVE because I love anything Spanish-food related
- I LOVED IT; I didn’t use any dressing, but I think salsa would have made this even more delicious; definitely making this one again
Thursday: arugula, cucumber, green pepper, pine nuts, walnuts, bleu cheese and green goddess dressing
- Expectation: I wanted to try one with walnuts and cheese to test it out, but I thought the blue cheese crumbles would be too overpowering
- Reality: not bad! I needed more lettuce to make the topping to lettuce ratio just right, but the crunchiness of the walnuts and the softness of the peppers and cucumbers mixed well
Friday: I ain’t eating no salad because I just finished my first year of grad school and I’m celebrating with a delicious helping of garlic bread and lasagna. Don’t judge me 🙂
Overall, the experiment was a success. I want to keep trying this to see if it does improve that “heavy” feeling after lunch and see if I can get even more creative. Here’s some combos I want to try:
– greek salad (cucumber, tomato, feta, couscous, etc.)
– apple and brie salad (green apple, brie cheese, vinaigrette)
– salmon salad (either smoked or baked salmon with capers, onions, lemon)
– avocado salad (avocado, black bean, tomato, corn, etc.)
Do you have any favorite salad recipes to share??