Motivational Monday: THE PLAN


Joel here.

Let’s just start with the fact that I’m a creative type.  I do love dealing with spreadsheets and numbers, but not that much of a scheduler. I can schedule myself as long as I know what tasks are at hand and when they need to be done, but not that great with generic “oh do something about blah when ever you feel like doing it”.

Because of this, I find that if I have a plan or schedule laid out,  I will do much better. Back when I was going to the gym to do “weights” I never really had a plan. I would hit up a machine and do reps until sore then move on to the next machine. I never settled into a groove and I didn’t ever see results.

But now we have “THE PLAN”. The plan is just a list of exercises that we do at the gym in a specific order with a specific number of reps and amount of weight. Its been great I am seeing (or not really seeing yet, but feeling) the progress. What it took for me was to type out the plan, email it to myself, then print it out and put it in my gym bag. With my Training Peaks account I also have them email me every morning my workout plan that I have entered. It’s a great reminder every day of what I am doing, and it also Emails me “THE PLAN” so I can see what I am supposed to do.

The first day to the gym I looked over the plan on the way there and carried it around to each machine. By the second week I had memorized the order of the exercises.  By the third week I was able to do all my exercises confidently and up the weight and or reps of each.

Although looking at me, you might not see the abs of steel and the buns of a Greek statue yet, but I feel the progress being made. I can do 15 sit ups with a 10lb weight on my chest now, where in the first week I couldn’t even do 10. I am supposed to be doing 20, and by golly, that is what I will be doing this week. I can’t stand doing squats, never have liked them one bit, but I have been able to up the weight and have better form than ever before because of “THE PLAN”. I just think to myself that each squat is going to make me faster on the bike and faster on the run. Each lat pull down is going to make me a more efficient swimmer.

Every one of the exercises hits key groups that will make me a better triathlete, and that is my motivation.

Each month “THE PLAN” will change and be updated.

I am challenging you this week to make your own “THE PLAN” if you don’t have one. Have it emailed to yourself. Put it in your gym bag. Become friends with your plan. It will help you achieve complete your goals.

Question of the day: Do you have a “THE PLAN” or do you just wing it?


Batch Cooking Week 3!

Posting it a little late but hey, here you go!  Week 3 Batch Cooking happy fun fun go!


YouTube Link.

OK, Joel is getting better at this video thing, and is working on making the clips shorter. We realize you probably don’t want to watch a 20 minute video of us being dorky in the kitchen. So week 4 video will show off the food more and less of us just talking! This week 3 video on the other hand isn’t the best. We were grumpy by the end of it and we felt like we had cooked forever!


Overall, we were pretty happy with the food this week but might not make everything again.  Details below.

Indian Dishes (Chicken Tikka Masala and Peas and Cheese):

Joel: From my perspective the Indian was fantastic but maybe not worth the effort to make all the sauces from scratch. It is easy and just about as healthy to me to go buy a jar of pre made sauce.  It was fun to learn how to make them though.

Leah: I disagree.  We have had some pretty terrible jarred indian sauces and this was one of the best non-restaurant versions I’ve had of either dish (to get that good we need practice :D).  I do admit though – this took SO much longer than any other dish.  Also, I probably don’t want Indian food this frequently, so if we do this again, I would just make the chicken, and throw veggies in like we did (and maybe some paneer), and call it a day.

For the record: we used these recipes pretty closely minus using half and half instead of heavy cream to lighten it up a bit, and adding cauliflower and green beans to the chicken dish.  Would do both again.


Tuna Sandwiches and Kale and Potato Chips (no recipe for the tuna, check the video for the awesome dueling tuna segment…):

Joel: The tuna worked well, but I ended up with some left over, I didn’t need 2 cans of my own, I think I would have done great with just 1 can and 2 sandwiches.  Also, we ran out of bread mid week, so we went out one day we were supposed to have tuna.

Leah: While I enjoyed having it done for me, I really don’t mind and have plenty of time over lunch to put together a tuna sandwich.  It got a little skunky by Friday but was edible.  The kale and potato chips were AMAZING the day of and then worthless after being stored in a bag.  I would totally do both again, but only for day-of consumption (but let me tell you people – if you want to consume a whole head of kale in one sitting, do this…trust me…)  It was super easy, but took a lot of stove attention for about 10 mins per batch.

Beef Stew (made it sans Spicy this week and with extra beef to extend from 4 to 6 servings):

Joel: The Beef stew was amazing as usual, I can eat that every week.

Leah: I dunno about every week, but it’s always a good meal!  Tip: do NOT skip the steps preparing the beef.  It comes out so much better seared with just a dusting of flour.  I’m all for the easy route but don’t do it here!!!


Beef and Bean Burritos Verde:

Joel: The burritos were good that we made them again for week 4.

Leah:  I wholeheartedly concur.  I looked forward to burrito days all week and I was sad we only had two each.  I could eat these every week.

That’s it!  Next week, we’re doing a little less because DANG that was a long day in the kitchen!  Whew!

Question of the day: What is your favorite “easy” meal that we could batch cook and try out?  Let us know!