Today Was a Tough One…

Published January 19, 2013 by Susan Woodward

Well, I had lots of great intentions, and in spite of the excruciating pain in my lower back, I dragged myself up and out of the house early tbest_of_PUBLIC_MARKEToday.  I really, really wanted to go to the Rochester Public Market to get my produce for all the new recipes I am trying.   We truly are blessed to have what has been voted the #1 Public Market in the U.S., and it’s open year round.   With the price of produce skyrocketing in the grocery stores, we are fortunate enough to have a public market that offers such a wide variety of, not only fruits and vegetables, but meats, fish, grains, pastas, teas, coffees, and so much more.  It’s my absolute favorite place to go on Saturday mornings in the summer and fall, but I’d never been there in January.   How great to see the venders out there still bringing us bargains in spite of the cold temperatures!

My trips to the market have always been wrought with good intentions to eat more produce, yet sadly, I have to admit that I do not always eat everything I buy.  Mostly this is from pure laziness in not cooking it all… or reaching for a not-so-healthy snack instead of the fresh fruit I’d bought.

So to make some changes… there are currently NO not-so-healthy snacks in the house.  There is, however, a very large bowl filled with fruit sitting on the counter.

After the market, I went to our group meeting with our Nutritionist.   This is really helping a lot by having a support group that’s in the same boat!  We shared success and fall-backs… we shared some recipes, and Patti even brought us an energy treat for after our workout!   I also have 16 bean soup for lunch thanks to Michelle!  This is a great group of women taking this Challenge… and I am so glad to be a part of it.

And then it was time for Cirque Fit… and for me, that’s when things started to spiral down.  My back was already in pain, and even though I stretched and did some warm-ups (thank you, Chris, for the tips), I managed to make the lower back even worse.   Thank you to Lisa for recognizing and empathizing with my situation!   She brought me a roller and showed me how to lay on it to try to stretch out the lower back.  Well, that’s where I pretty much spent the rest of class, except for re-joining once the intensity of the workout dropped.

When class was over, all I wanted to do was go home and hit the hot bathtub… but we had aerial practice first.  Needless to say, I didn’t do nearly as much as I’d planned on earlier in the day when the mind was all pleasantly plotting out how great today’s workout was going to be.  Great intentions…but I didn’t want to argue with my body that said, “Hey… take a break here!”   This was more than soreness… that actually has been feeling good to work through!!  This was sharp and scolding!

In spite of my crying (and yes, tears were falling), I did manage to get my foot into a wrap all by myself and pull up on the silks!!  I only got up once, but it was one more time than I’d ever done before!   Laffy Taffy was a bad idea, though… once the body got swaying in circles, the back started screaming, “What the f#@* are you doing?”  I managed to circle three full rotations before stopping.  And I tried hanging from the trapeze… I thought it might stretch out my back.  The hanging part was okay, but when I tried to lift my legs, they weren’t going anywhere today.  One thing I DID manage to do fairly well was the stretch against the wall… sitting with my hips right up against the wall, legs straight out, and arms/shoulders/head flattened out.  The stretching in the shoulders took all the attention away from the lower back!!

But I did survive.

I was advised to continue moving around today (thanks to LOTS of folks!) in spite of the fact that I really wanted to crawl into bed with a heating pad.  So when I got home, I had to unload all the stuff I’d gotten at the market.  Once I did that, I decided it might be a good idea to make soup.  I figured that once I sat down, I wasn’t going to be getting up again any time soon, and having a pot of soup cooking would be a great way to be ready for when I DO finally nestle in with my Netflix!

I thought that it might be a good idea to practice my hip tucks while standing at the counter cutting vegetables.  By tucking the hips under, the pressure on my back was alleviated.  I also pulled in my core and squeezed the butt cheeks.  It is still a workout and it makes up a bit for the partial-Cirque-Fit earlier.  There’s also something very therapeutic about cooking.

So… what’s for dinner?  I’m making a veggie based bean and pasta soup.  I chopped up and sauteed (in olive oil): 8 tomatoes, 2 green peppers, a large red pepper, three onions, 8 stalks of celery (with the greens), three cloves of garlic, and a generous handful of cilantro.   I am cooking them down right now, and as soon as I finish writing this, I am going to put the veggies through a blender to puree them.  Then I will add a box of organic tomato soup (to stretch the base).  To that I will add black and pinto beans.   Then I will add some cooked Italian-pesto pasta (courtesy of Pappardelle’s, the BEST pasta makers in the world–in my opinion anyway– and available at the Rochester Public Market).

Here’s their website… do yourself a favor and try some!!  default_03

The last step will be to put chopped kale into the soup bowl and then ladle piping hot soup over it.  That way it will wilt, but not get all soggy and stringy like it would if I boiled it right in the soup itself.

Off to get the blender to finish the soup!!  Then I shall take a bit of “me” time with some Netflix or maybe that new murder mystery I just got!

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