I need to preface this post by mentioning that this has nothing to do with that dumb movie, Zombieland (sorry to those of you that like that “comedy”).
But I’ll get to that soon- let’s start with a recap from last night’s dinner, cause it was go.o.o.o.o.d.
After squash training last night, Nabilla and I went to celebrate the end of her Ramadan fast at one of her favourite restaurants, Audrey Claire. Thank goodness we had a reservation, because even at 8:30 when we got there, the restaurant was packed. Clearly this place is a Philly fave!
I had had a hard workout day, and Nabilla had been fasting for a month, so it goes without saying that we were famished by the time we sat down to eat. Along with an entire jug of water (we were also parched), our server brought over a basket of bread with olive oil.
Half the battle of ordering was not only deciding what to get, but how much. We couldn’t decide between two of the smaller dishes (after having narrowed it down from about six), so we settled on both!
One was a grilled octopus salad, with extra virgin olive oil and lemon over greens. There were also a number of other vegetables, such as tomatoes and cucumbers, mixed in which made this salad a little more substantial.
The dressing was sweet, which went nicely with the figs, and counterbalanced the sharper taste of the goat cheese. I absolutely adore goat cheese, especially when it has been warmed or melted. It’s such a simple thing to do, but I never think to try it at home!
As an entree, Nabilla and I split the grilled Branzino, served with roasted vegetables.
The lighting in the restaurant was abysmal, so you’ll have to excuse this sub-par picture. The fish was tasty, however I wish it had been filleted for us. The roasted vegetables were hands-down my favourite part of this dish, and I probably could have eaten 6 times the amount they gave us!
For dessert we headed out to Yogorino, a nearby deluxe frozen yogurt shop. Yogorino is different from most other fro yo places, since they only have 1 flavour of yogurt, better quality toppings, and it’s not self-serve.
I ordered a mini-size cone (which was still pretty big!) topped with white chocolate sauce, milk chocolate hazelnut sauce, and almonds.
Nabilla ordered a small, with sweet pistachio sauce. I had originally considered getting the pistachio flavour, but the green colour freaked me out a little for some reason. I know pistachio nuts are green, and I love ’em almost as much as other nuts, but the colour just reminded me of mexican green salsa. Naaahhh.
Would you think I was crazy if I said that I enjoyed my breakfast even more than my frozen yogurt from last night? Because it’s true.
I made myself vanilla protein cheesecake pudding by combining 2% Greek yogurt with a scoop of Vega vanilla protein powder and a little light coconut milk to help mixing.
I also added in some cold steel-cut oats that I had soaked in water overnight, a little GoLean Crunch, a frozen banana, and some peanut butter. I really loved the addition of the cold oats since they gave the pudding a little extra chewiness, as well as the crunch of the GoLean cereal!
Workout: From Zombie-Girl to Happy-Girl
This morning was strange. I went to sleep last night feeling like a zombie, hoping that when I woke up this morning I would feel awake and energized after a good night’s rest. Instead, I woke up feeling tired and hungry, and unable to go back to sleep. After eating breakfast I considered going back to sleep, but decided against it, as I’m pretty opposed to naps in the morning (unless I’m sick).
Last night I had signed up for a 12:30 pm spin at Body Cycle, and as noon approached, I was feeling less and less motivated to go. My quad was still sore from yesterday (although not too bad), my head was in a bit of a fog, and I really just wanted to sit on the floor in my PJ’s and eat almond butter and crackers. However, I knew that if I didn’t go I would get charged $10, and that was motivation enough to get me moving and out the door.
On my walk down to the studio, I still wasn’t feeling like myself, but I kept telling myself that the point of this spin was not to be a crazy hard workout, but rather to re-energize myself.
And you know what? After 10 minutes on the bike, I felt my lethargic feelings melt away, and by the end of the class I had sweated them out completely! Going into the class with the mentality that I didn’t have to destroy myself for 45 minutes, took a lot of the pressure off the workout, and I was able to enjoy it. And when I say enjoy it, I don’t mean “appreciate that I got my butt kicked”, I actually felt happy and motivated the whole time.
Although I experience the “workout high” nearly every time I exercise, I was overcome by surprise by today’s spin. Here are a few of the changes- small and big- that I felt after:
- I went from feeling like an unmotivated zombie, to a happy, energetic girl.
- On the walk down, nothing on Spotify seemed interesting, and on the walk back, I happily listened to the most random, strangest music.
- I felt heavy while walking down to the studio, and light on the way back.
- Instead of craving almond butter and crackers, all I wanted was vegetables for lunch.
- Knowing that I had forms to fill out, reading to do, and people to email no longer seemed like yawn-worthy tasks. (Okay, maybe a little bit, but I was in much more of a mindset to tackle them now).
- I no longer wanted to go back to bed and nap.
- My body went from feeling tight and stressed to loose and relaxed.
All in all, I felt a lot better about myself after the spin! So, next time it’s not your rest-day, and you’re feeling unmotivated to work out, try going to a low-impact exercise class with no expectations, and have fun! Working out doesn’t always have to be about pushing yourself 100%, sometimes it’s nice to back off and just enjoy the ride 🙂