A foodie's quest to turn up the heat through strength and conditioning with whole food and a hungry mind.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

WIAW #21: Mixed Veggie Protein Smoothie and Papaya Seed Salad for Fun Fitness Food

This summer is zooming by faster than you can say…ummm…zoom. That was bad, sorry. Anyway, although I’m not in school or anything, I can’t believe it’s almost “Back-To-School” season again! Once school’s in session, that means a longer commute to work though…bleh.

If you read my blog often, you probably know I like to puree random fruits and veggies to make creamy protein smoothies. I normally have some type of winter squash that I will steam and use for my smoothies, but lately I’ve been trying to branch out and try other things. Plus, sometimes you just don’t feel like cutting a big squash in half, scooping the seeds, cooking, and removing the skin every weekend.

So far I have used steamed rhubarb with strawberries which, obviously, made a very red but delicious smoothie. I’ve also tried green beans (not too bad), yellow summer squash (steamed and raw), and zucchini. Although it’s hard to beat pureed butternut squash for a super thick and delicious protein smoothie, I would (and do) use all of the above again.
It works for pies! Why not protein smoothies too?

This is a great way to pack in extra veggies while having a healthy dessert too. Stevia, frozen bananas or berries, peanut butter, and cinnamon can truly make the best tasting concoctions in my opinion; what do you think? Here’s one of my latest mixes with peas, carrots, tofu, vanilla protein powder, vanilla extract, stevia, and cinnamon. Like my cup and green koozie? This is my favorite way to eat my mixes; stick in the freezer for a while and enjoy with a spoon!

Another favorite of mine is to add fresh, pepper papaya seeds on my salad. Have you ever tried papaya seeds? They are not fruity at all and have a very strong pepper taste that is perfect on salad. I bet they’d pair well with a baked white fish or in a cold grain salad dish too.

In the fitness department, I’m making sure to keep it fun and varied with a mix of heavy barbell lifting, high-rep dumbbell DVD exercises, running, and swimming. I almost forgot, mowing the lawn with a reel mower twice a week ain’t no walk in the park either! Yes, I said “ain’t”; being a Texan allows me this right.

I love all of the workout circuits other bloggers have been posting and the ones all over Pinterest too. Just reading through them all is fun and makes me want to jump and do one right then. I like the ones with added weights over bodyweight circuits. Which ones, if any, do you prefer?

Sprinting makes up a lot of my running, but I’ve switched to swim sprints for variety and just more enjoyment. Nothing like some heavy lifting followed by a quick swim in the pool! Since my current goal is strength, I try not to go overboard on cardio, but I don’t feel complete without it. I guess I could just eat more. Think pea and carrot smoothies will help me get there?

Happy What I Ate Wednesday and as always, thanks to Jenn at Peas and Crayons for hosting this fun blog event!

[B] Steamed veggies and tuna; rooibos tea mixed with black Tea (thanks to my Foodie Penpal!)

[S] Cut fresh red pepper and fennel with green tea

[L] Tuna-Millet Green Bean Salad

[Workout] Barbell Power Clean, Supreme 90 video, and mowing with a reel mower

[D] Gianormous salad with papaya seeds and sautéed bay scallops (you can’t see the scallops, but they’re there!) and homemade lentil veggie salsa; [D2] Veggie black bean peanut butter dip mixed with Chobani plain Greek yogurt, and pistachios; Pea, Carrot, and papaya protein smoothie; I added CHO on top later

My Lentil Veggie Salsa before the processor

I'm thinking about following the Supreme 90 Workout videos all the way through and give the barbell a break.  What do you think about this change?  It's hard to give up the barbell as it just feels good, but these videos can really work you if you use heavy dumbbells! Stay tuned for updates!

I stress way too much about working out b/c I don't ever feel like I do enough.  Really, my body is screaming at me to rest.

Q: Are you following a certain plain or just taking it day by day?
Q2: Do you have trouble giving your body a break or do you look forward to the rest day every week?


  1. I like the idea of adding papaya seeds to your salad...sounds delicious!

  2. Love the smoothie ideas! I love using sweet potatoes and carrots for my seet potato pie and carrot cake green smoothies, but have never tried butternut squash! Also, your tuna millet green bean salad sounds looks incredible!

    1. You must try the butternut squash! Or even acorn, delicata, kabocha, and spaghetti squash are great! I need to try the sweet potato though, that sounds delicious!

      Thanks for the comments, have a great day!

  3. Hey there! Just wanted to say thank you for stopping by my blog and entering my giveaway...hopefully that extra tweet won't ruin your odds too much! ;)

    I love adding spinach and pumpkin to my smoothies, but I have NEVER thought to add any other veggies! What a great idea to combine the rhubarb and strawberries...I need to get my hands on some rhubarb before the season is over for sure! I've never been a big papaya fan, so I actually had no idea about the seeds. I may have to give it another go, just to get the seeds for my next salad! ;)

    I was following Jamie Eason's LiveFit program and even though I had to restart it like 3 times, I finally made it through phase 1...and then I dropped it. I really was eager to see what phase 2 would bring to the table, but things just sort of happened and I quickly just found myself resuming my "play it by ear" approach. Half the time I don't even know what I'm going to do at the gym until I hop on a piece of cardio equipment for my 10 minute warmup! Lol And as far as rest days...I go through phases where, like you, I feel like I'm not doing enough so I take "active rest days" instead, but I'm actually just coming off a 3 day hiatus from working out and I think it was JUST what my body needed!

    Happy WIAW!! Oh, and btw, LOVE your blog name and header! :)

    1. Hi Heather! So glad you like my blog and crazy combo ideas!

      I now enjoy reading your blog, and I too hope I didn't skew my odds too much for the giveaway.

      Yeah, I was just adding my normal veggies like spinach, carrots, pumpkin, etc. and just thought why stop there? If those veggies work, others should too. Sure enough, other veggies do the trick....less any peppers or onions...bleck!

      I'm not too familiar with LiveFit, but going to check it out now. I know my body could use a real break, I just need to make myself relax.

      Happy WIAW to you too and thanks for visiting! Hope you come back often!

  4. Hey RC! I love the smoothie ideas. Pumpkin and squash are usually my favourite veggies to puree into smoothies (besides spinach!) I like the idea of putting steamed zucchini into smoothies...it's getting to that time of year when we're overcome with a mass of zucchini!

    As for being on a plan, I'm not really following one like the Supreme 90, LiveFit or anything like that. I kind of have my own "routine" where I go to BodyPump 3 days a week (Wednesday, Friday, Sunday), and on the other days I hike (work), or do cardio and a little (or what I consider to be "a little") strength training.

    I'm notorious for not taking rest days, which is probably not the best thing. I rarely give myself a break...I too feel like I'm never quite doing "enough." When in reality, I'm probably doing too much.

    Happy WIAW :)

    1. Man, your last paragraph pretty much sums up my exercise pattern too. Some people have trouble just getting up to do anything, and we are the exact opposite. Craziness!

      Sounds like you have a pretty good non-routine, routine. I think if you were going to try and give yourself a little break, you could omit the extra cardio you do since hiking at work plus your other workouts should be plenty.

      Happy WIAW back at ya, and thanks for commenting. Take it easy, I'll try to do the same ;)

  5. Great idea on the papaya seeds on salad! I've never tasted papaya nor papaya seeds :( It's just not common here (Holland) where I live.. I know they're amazingly good for you tho ;) XO

    1. Sorry to hear papaya is hard to come by there. I bet you have plenty of other things we can't get, if it makes you feel any better.

      If you ever get the chance, just slice a papaya in half and try some of the seeds. I think they kind of look like black pomegranate seeds.

      It's great for healthy digestive properties and of course vital nutrients....plus it just tastes good to me!

      Thanks for visiting and have a great day!

  6. I love papaya too!! I don't know how you ever came up with the idea of adding papaya seeds to your salad but it sounds great! This is my first time visiting you here..I love cayenne too btw!!

    1. So glad you found my site, I hope you can make it back again! You should give the papaya seeds a try and let me know how you like them.

      Always good to have another cayenne lover to talk to, I find I feel my meals aren't complete until there's cayenne added.

      Thanks for stopping by, hope to hear from you again!

  7. I love papaya but i find the seeds unedible!! to me they taste like they should not be eaten!!! loveley photos and a nice recap of your day! thx for sharing!

    1. Man, I know they taste unlike anything that should be in fruit, but I enjoy the pepper kick. Thanks for the compliments and for visiting!

  8. I love the idea of papaya seeds. I have to try that.

  9. I never knew you could eat papaya seeds! Newest fan from WIAW- I love Tone it Up for my fitness fix. Cheers!

    1. You can and should at least try the seeds once...just to say you tried. That's what made me try the first time, and now I'm hooked. I've never heard of Tone it Up, but will look it up as I look into LiveFit too! Thanks for the comments and reading!

  10. Everything looks delish! Papaya seeds are interesting, I can't say that I've ever had one though. Looks like I'm on the hunt! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Please come back and let know how you like the seeds if you ever get a chance. Of course, you can come back before then too. ;)

      Thanks for reading!