After a long night of thunderstorms, it felt good to sleep in and then have an extra-long breakfast while watching Moneyball.
I wanted to bake something for work lunches for the upcoming week, and came across my bookmarked recipe for Jamie Eason’s LiveFit Cinnamon Swirl Protein Bread.
It was easy to throw together, and they turned out quite well despite today’s discovery. I hate Stevia in the Raw (SITR).
To be fair, Jamie lists Ideal Xylitol in her ingredient list but that is not something I’ve been able to find in the stores. After doing some research, I found that many people use SITR in place of sugar in recipes. SITR is easily found at my grocery store and seemed like a good substitution.
This is only my second time baking with it (the first time was making Clean Eating’s Meyer Lemon Bars) and both recipes came out way too bitter for my taste. I wanted to do a little experiment this time, and used Truvia in the actual batter of the cake (bread) and used the Stevia in the Raw only for the cinnamon/”sugar” mixture. The cake part of the bars was actually quite tasty! It was the cinnamon SITR swirl part that tasted bitter and ruined the recipe. I dissected the bars to try to remove as much as the cinnamon swirl as possible to salvage some of bread.
I need to do some more research on these sugar substitutes, but my intuition tells me that no artificial sweetener is truly good. Last week I made muffins that were sweetened entirely with dates, and I really like the idea of using natural, whole foods to sweeten food instead of all these alternate sugar products on the market.
Frustrated with today’s baking experiment, I focused on lunch instead.
Grilled bacon-wrapped pork tenderloins with a chimichuri sauce, asparagus and an orange-pineapple-banana-honey-sweet potato mash. This came from a magazine-style cookbook that my Mom gave us for Easter. The mash was interesting. It is filled with citrus flavor. Definitely a different way to have sweet potatoes.
While at the bookstore last night, I saw an article about how the Cybex Arc Trainer is one of the best forms of cardio in the gym. It has been a long time since I’ve used it (it has been known to bother my knee) but was inspired to give it another try.
I just did the pre-programmed interval training option which alternated between 25-45 resistance for a total of 30 minutes, which is very similar to the workout outlined in the magazine. 30 minutes was enough to work up a sweat after my short chest lifting session. No knee pain! I think I’ll give this piece of gym equipment a try more often on cardio days to switch things up. Although I prefer to do cardio outdoors (running, cycling, skiing, rollerblading, hiking) there are certain days where it is easier to do it at the gym while I’m already there for weights.
Came home for a quick shower and then we went to visit some friends and go out for dinner. My stomach was not feeling the greatest, so I stayed away from the margaritas and opted for a simple dinner of chicken tortilla soup and a steak taco. I really wanted an ooey-gooey chimichanga or quesadilla, but knew that the deep-fried, cheese-filled nature of it would have me sick for the rest of the night. Thankfully, the soup is INCREDIBLE at this restaurant so I didn’t feel deprived. It was topped with plenty of fresh diced avocado, which in addition to the guacamole we had pre-dinner, was the perfect amount for my daily avocado fix. :-)
Our friends have the cutest, most mature and well-behaved 4-year old I’ve met. During dinner she was quietly drawing, and before we left she handed me this masterpiece.
She said that the picture was of me, and the chores that I have to do. Unfortunately she is right. There are many chores that I sadly never got around to this weekend that will still be waiting for me come Monday morning.
Have you ever baked with Stevia in the Raw? What are your thoughts? What is your favorite form of “in-the-gym” cardio?