Getting real

Last month when I visited Arizona, one of the first things I did was head to a local citrus store and purchase navel oranges to send home.

There’s a big difference between those oranges, likely shipped from California, you can find bundled at the grocery store, and those you find in Arizona. If you like real food, it is worth the additional expense to ship them.

There are few foods that I haven’t experimented by giving a bite to Riley. Citrus, particularly oranges and grapefruit, were among that list. On Saturday, I gave a few slices to Riley. It shouldn’t come as a surprise but he loved the oranges, too. Now I’ll have to compete with him and fend him off each time I want one.

This all coincides with my attempts and intentions to eat much better. By better I mean eating clean. And by eating clean, I mean eating food that is close to its original state – natural and unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables, lean meats and foods with few ingredients.

To help me get there, I purchased The Feed Zone Cookbook while I was picking up my bike at the shop, and I have a few more books on my shopping list.

Over the past week, I took a few minutes here and there – when I had the chance – to read the introduction and begin looking at a few of the recipes. Many of them look intriguing, and I’ll make up a few of my own using the principles and suggestions in it.

On Saturday, I spent time between workouts and errands to purchase numerous ingredients for my pantry. Some of these items I’ve never purchased before. So, to celebrate, this morning I made the amazing, energy and flavor packed granola from the Feed Zone book.

But I also know that my diet needs to be full of raw vegetables. This is going to require a little more dedication and creativity to find and purchase, especially I usually like to buy quality food – preferably in quantity if I can. The day I purchased the cookbook, I also bought this vegetable tray:

Still, I’m excited about this new journey. It will be the best way to fuel my workouts, and fight the fatigue that I’ve experienced while training for Ironman Wisconsin. Formal training starts this month, although I’m already doing more than the base and early phase calls for. I bonked a bit on the bike Saturday morning – and I hadn’t eaten anything before trying to crank out a hard 2-hour effort. I ate a good meal, then headed to the pool, where I logged my longest swim ever. It wasn’t fast, but it was encouraging.

My goal was to go cross country skiing this morning, until I started making the granola. Perhaps I’ll get there this afternoon, but I plan to hit the pool again and run 12 miles. For his part, Riley is getting a bit anxious to head out for some exercise, difficult due to the extreme wind chills. Here’s a photo of him after the big snow – about a foot at my home – early last week:

One thought on “Getting real

  1. Eating clean and close to the ground is another step in living and dying healthy. It’s good to read about your journey!