Healthy Recipe: Roasted Pork Tenderloin Tacos

This recipe was quick and so satisfying and tasty!  My favorite part was making the pickled onions… I’ve seen them at Mexican restaurants, but I had no idea how easy they’d be to make. Enjoy!

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Photo credit: Cooking Light.com

ROASTED PORK TENDERLOIN TACOS
from Cooking Light

Ingredients

1 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons mojo marinade, such as Goya (I couldn’t find this, so I grabbed a packet of fajita seasoning and it worked great!  You could also do a simple rub with garlic salt, fresh pepper, and chipotle chili powder)
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons water
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
1 jalapeño pepper, minced
1 ripe avocado, cut into 16 wedges
1/4 cup Mexican crema (it you have trouble finding it, you can substitute sour cream thinned with a little lime juice)

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 425°.
2. Sprinkle pork with pepper and salt. Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add pork; cook 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Place pan in oven. Bake at 425° for 8 minutes or until a thermometer registers 145° (slightly pink); let stand 5 minutes. Cut crosswise into 16 slices. Combine pork and mojo marinade (or seasonings) in a medium bowl; toss to coat pork.
3. Combine vinegar, 3 tablespoons water, and sugar in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Remove from heat; add onion. Let stand 10 minutes; drain.
4. Working with 1 tortilla at a time, toast in a pan or over a flame of a gas burner until tender and blackened in spots. Arrange 2 pork slices in center of each tortilla; top with about 2 tablespoons onion, 1/2 teaspoon minced jalapeño, 2 avocado wedges, and 1 1/2 teaspoons crema.

By the way, as kitchen tools go, I can’t recommend tortilla warmers highly enough. To make really good tacos, you’ve got to heat the tortillas (I like doing it directly on the burners; it makes me feel like a badass, plus you get that open-flame-cooked taste), and keep them warm until you’re ready to serve. I’ve bought a lot of kitchen stuff I don’t use… but I use this all the time. A solid ($7.99) investment!

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Photo Credit: CameronsProducts.com

Nutritional Information (entire recipe makes 4 servings of 2 tacos each): 362 Calories, 16.9 grams Fat, 28 grams Protein, 27 grams Carbohydrates

63% of a Workout is Better than 0%

Man, this week has been kind of a shitshow on the weight loss/triathlon training adventure. I missed my workouts Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Today, I went to the pool, but only because my coworker was meeting me there (for which I am so, so grateful!), but I got there late and was only able to do 1400 meters out of the 2400 yards that were on my program before I had to leave for work.

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On the plus side, even though I was at the pool with all the SRS BSNS athletes, I managed to overcome my self-consciousness and do flip turns most of the time. My OTHER coworker, who used to be a competitive swimmer, taught me last week. My flip turns are pretty sloppy and I’m sure quite entertaining to watch, but I am doing a somersault at the end of the lane and a few seconds later I am swimming in the other direction, so… win?

I am considering another mini-challenge on this blog where I report in every day, but just about my training. I REALLY want to form the habit of doing all of my weekday workouts before work.  The reasons for this are sixfold:

  • Snooze-sleep is not good sleep anyway, and that’s what I currently do between 5am (when I intend to get up and exercise) and 6:30am (when I actually have to get up and start getting ready)
  • Very little can interfere with pre-work plans, but things can and often do come up in the evenings (having to work late, social plans, errands to run, just plain tired, etc.)
  • The things I want to do are always available in the mornings (pools are open, running outside isn’t as hot, it’s not too dark to bike safely)
  • Training after work means having to find motivation and get-up-and-go… TWICE. I have to do it in the morning anyway to start the day, but having to do it AGAIN after work increases my chances of flaking on myself dramatically
  • I feel good and have more energy throughout the day when I exercise in the morning
  • It would mean no stupid calorie checkbook projections!  When I plan to work out in the evening, I’ll often pre-enter my planned exercise into MyFitnessPal to see how many calories I have available for snacks, dinner, etc. Guess what often happens? I’ll eat the calories, but not do the workout. Fail.

So, I think I’ll try that, starting next week.  Til then, everyone!

Weigh-in Wednesday: Week 16

Photos

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Post-burlesque show selfie taken last night; our theme was “spies” and I did a number as Agent 99 from Get Smart!

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Calories

  • 1961 daily net average – pretty consistent with last week, corresponding with an exactly consistent result on the scale. Coincidence? Probably not.

Exercise

  • 30 min or more of walking every work day
  • completed four of my six scheduled training workouts; some of them were DOOZIES!
  • total of 2.56 mi swimming, 40 mi biking, 5.11 mi running

Game Plan

  • 65 points out of 100, a D

Measurements

  • Waist: 39.5″     Last: 40.5″     Highest: 42″
  • Hips: 46.5″     Last: 46.5″     Highest: 50″

Weight

  • Today: 222.4     Last Week: 221.8     Highest: 242

Dammit! There’s no way to say this without it sounding like excuses, but I really think I basically maintained my weight this week (+0.6 again), but I gave in to the stress and busy-ness of yesterday’s burlesque show and did some comfort-eating and some workout-skipping. This week is off to a better start, though: we ordered lunch from CPK in celebration of Administrative Professionals Day, and I chose a roasted veggie salad. Go me!

Healthy Recipe: Three-Chile-Dusted Shrimp with Corn Relish

How is this recipe a crowd-pleaser? Let me count the ways: it’s light, fresh, flavorful, seasonal, a little spicy, a little sweet, gluten-free, dairy-free. So, um… eight, off the top of my head. Added bonus: it’s really quick and easy to make. Enjoy!

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Photo credit: Randy Mayor; Melanie J. Clarke

THREE-CHILE DUSTED SHRIMP WITH CORN RELISH
from Cooking Light

Ingredients

3 1/2 teaspoons sugar, divided
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1/4 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined large shrimp
5 teaspoons olive oil, divided
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 chopped red bell pepper
3 cloves minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced ginger
1 14.5oz can yellow corn
1 1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/2 cup chopped green onions

Preparation

Combine 2 teaspoons sugar, chili powder, chile powders, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a shallow dish. Add shrimp to spice mixture; toss well to coat.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1/2 cup onion, bell pepper, garlic, and ginger to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Add remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar and corn to pan; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in vinegar; cook 30 seconds. Transfer corn mixture to a bowl; stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 cup green onions.

Wipe pan with a paper towel. Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add shrimp to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until done, turning once. Serve with corn mixture.

Yield: 4 servings
Nutritional Information: 342 Calories, 9.6 grams Fat, 28 grams Carbohydrates, 37.9 grams Protein

HITS Napa Olympic: A Race Report in 25 Haiku

1:23am
Oh, seriously?
Quality Inn Vacaville:
THE place to party

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2:37am
Not cute anymore
Get a life, high school students
Drink more quietly

3:45am
9 minute snooze, please
It’s cruel and unusual
Waking at this hour

3:54am
ALRIGHT already
I am up and brushing teeth
Whose idea was this?

4:00am
No tattoos are found
In my participant pack
Aw – my favorite part!

4:15am
Almost ready now
24-hour Subway
Race day breakfast noms

6:00am
A sweet parking spot
Long lines at port-a-johns
Plenty of time, though

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6:10am
“Stool, bike to the right”
It’s not that complicated
Please stop repeating

6:55am
Time to find Alex
In a sea of neoprene
Good luck on the sprint!

7:10am
Eight trips to the car
Forget each thing separately
Hide keys in a bush

7:35am
Found Coach Irondad!
Chihuahua is keeping warm
Inside his hoodie

7:51am
Olympic females
Off and swimming in the lake
Balmy sixties temp

7:55am
All this beige algae
It’s incredibly nasty
Try to avoid mouth

8:40am
Yep, I’m still real slow
But that was a pleasant swim
And I’m not dead last!

1

8:48am
Two minutes biking
Just enough to catch my breath
Before the hills begin

9:05am
Sprint girl returning
Walking bike – are you ok?
She needs my air pump

9:07am
My trusty Lezyne
Brings new life to sad back tire
And then we part ways

9:52am
A beautiful day!
I can handle all these hills
It will just take time

2

10:25am
By mile 17
Every new climb an insult
I’m so over it

11:05am
So much gratitude
Being off my bicycle
I would rather run!

11:06am
Well, I’d rather walk
Hills continue to plague me
Still: forward motion

11:12am
Irondad again!
In full running gear, no less
He has crashed the course

11:40am
I’ve made some new friends
Walk uphill and run back down
Lather, rinse, repeat

12:20pm
No more walking now
Jog the last few hundred yards
Finish line’s in sight

3

12:21pm
My cheering family
This Star Trek-looking medal
Who could ask for more?

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Weigh-in Wednesday: Week 15

I’m finding it a little hard to believe that we are in the middle of April. 3 1/2 months into 2014! That’s nuts.

As you know, the theme for this week is getting back into the regular swing of this blog. And that means today you get a weekly progress update!

Photos

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Calories

  • 1923 daily net average – a couple of really high days (pre-race “carb-loading”! Passover seder!) and some good ones. This is the area I most need to work on and be consistent about.

Exercise

  • 30 min or more of walking every work day
  • all training workouts as prescribed EXCEPT a missed bike on Wednesday, and I added a swim I was trying to make up from the previous week
  • total of 2.21 mi swimming, 27.8 mi biking, 9.8 mi running…
  • …which includes finishing an Olympic distance triathlon!

Game Plan

  • 69 points out of 100, a D+

Measurements

  • Waist: 40.5″     Last: 40.75″     Highest: 42″
  • Hips: 46.5″     Last: 47″     Highest: 50″

Weight

  • Today: 221.8     Last Week: 221.2     Highest: 242

So, yeah – the week’s obvious high was finishing the HITS Napa Olympic distance triathlon. My time was 4 hours and 30 minutes, which is unimpressive to say the least. But Coach Irondad was pleased with my effort and I had fun out there, so I’m okay with that. Full race report tomorrow!

As usual, food is my “Needs Improvement” area. I gained about half a pound this week – not a big deal, but it’s the wrong direction. I’ve got to minimize my indulgences and keep working on good habits, even though life is busy and varied.

Onward!

 

Healthy Recipe: Meatballs & Peppers

I’m back from Northern California! I finished my (extremely challenging) Olympic-distance triathlon there (more on that soon)! Now begins the long haul to Big Kahuna. And, as promised, I’m going to try to get back to the routine of this blog: healthy recipes on Mondays, progress reports on Wednesdays, and various musings/race reports/etc. on the regular. Welcome back!

This recipe is something I made recently for a weeknight dinner with the husband. It’s fairly quick and easy, but the portion size is a little skimpy. Luckily, you can have two servings with a side of instant mashed potatoes (hypothetically, of course) and the whole dinner will still clock in at under 750 calories, which isn’t too bad.

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Photo credit: Becky Luigart-Stayner

MEATBALLS & PEPPERS
From Cooking Light

Ingredients

1 cup thinly sliced green bell pepper
1 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
1 cup thinly sliced yellow bell pepper
1 1/3 cups water
1 (14.5 oz) can beef broth
1 bay leaf
1 (1-ounce) slice whole-wheat bread
1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg white
2 large garlic cloves, crushed
2 teaspoons olive oil
1.5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

Preparation

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes.
While the peppers are cooking, place bread in a food processor; pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs form to measure 1/2 cup. Combine breadcrumbs, beef, and next 6 ingredients (beef though garlic) in a bowl, shaping mixture into 28 (1-inch) meatballs. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add meatballs; cook for 10 minutes, browning on all sides.
Combine flour and 1/4 cup water in a small bowl; stir with a whisk. Add to bell pepper mixture in saucepan. Add meatballs; cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in the basil and vinegar. Remove bay leaf.

Nutritional Information (total yield is four servings of 7 meatballs and 1 cup pepper mixture each): 263 Calories, 9.8 grams Fat, 12.4 grams Carbohydrates, 30.2 grams Protein