I started running again, for some good reasons.
I have a great view from my desk and there is always someone and something running up and down the street – no matter what. Seeing those elastic athletes passing by my window made me feel lazy and jealous. Would you call this peer pressure? I don’t know what came over me, but I had the urge to move my feet (and bud). So I started chasing them.
On the other hand, I should move myself a little more often anyway. Let me correct that, I should run out of my door and don’t stop for a long while. Who thought painting a house in style a la Animal from the Muppet Show wouldn’t balance my calorie budget in regards of having take-out for dinner for two months straight?
Apart from that my diet is pretty simple, I believe in chocolate and greens, maybe not at the same time. But eating right qualifies me for something gooey, creamy, chewy and necessary sweet afterwards. You know what I mean. There is nothing I am willing to change on this topic so getting in shape is my only possibility.
The “before” is my problem, the weak-minded pre-running moments: getting ready, finding the right time and making time. I tent to have the same argument with myself: why shouldn’t I rather stay at home and having a cuppa and cookies? We are all human more or less. After all running is fun! I love running and as soon I am on the street, I enjoy it.
The other good reason for running is listening to music. Finding the right grooves to your moves (is it still ok to say grooves? I am so 80’s 90’s). I have to admit I started nice and slow, why hurry? I make two steps in the same time Mumford or one his sons sings hee-eeaa-aa-ar-rrtt. Nevertheless I am still proud of myself, no one told me about this hills in Atlanta, they kill you.
The next goal I am trying to achieve (and it could be lifesaving) is improving my post running habits. How awesome would it be if I could just collapse under my fridge, operate the water dispenser with my pinky toe and manipulate the water jet with my big toe for targeting my mouth? Genius but mostly gross I know, that’s why I haven’t tried it so far, but with the arriving of summer weather I might announce a victory over this challenge.
The other thing I love about running? This would be thinking, somehow my brain is overachieving while blood will be pumped throughout my body, no surprise this works even for me. Running gives me the time to reflect and evaluate, anyway I am thinking about food very often. Well yes, of cause I had been running when I imagined the toe-water dispenser idea.
And by the way if I said running all the time, I mean slow motion jogging, my fault, no judging please.
Barely risotto is also kind of genius invention. It wins in multiple ways compared to the real deal risotto. It comes with less cheese, less effort (no constantly stirring necessary) and is as comforting as healthy. This recipe can be easily morphed into vegetarian or vegan food.
barley risotto with loads of mushrooms
- 10 g / 1 small handful dried mushrooms
- 200 g / 1 cup pearl barley, rinsed and drained
- 3 cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
- 3 garlic cloves finely diced (about 1 Tbsp.)
- 2 tsp. ghee or olive oil (divided)
- ½ tsp. dried thyme
- ½ tsp. smoked hot paprika powder
- 680 g / 24 oz. fresh mushrooms (baby bella)
- crumbled feta cheese and fresh cilantro (optional)
- Soak dried mushrooms in 400 ml / 1 2/3 cups hot water for 30 minutes, drain and save the mushroom water. Slice the soaked mushrooms in stripes and set aside.
- Melt 1 tsp. ghee or oil in a large nonstick frying pan over a medium heat, add garlic and sauté but don’t brown.
- Reduce heat, add barley, sliced (soaked) mushrooms, mushroom water, 2 cups broth, thyme, paprika powder, cover with a lid and simmer for 45 to 50 minutes. Stir once in a while to make sure the barley doesn’t stick at the bottom. Add more broth if needed in the final stages.
- Meanwhile clean the fresh mushrooms, cut off the very end of the stems and slice them vertically. Add the remaining 1 tsp. ghee to another skillet over medium high heat and let melt. Add sliced fresh mushrooms and toss them around to coat them. If the pan seems too dry, add a little more oil and butter. Stir and toss the mushrooms occasionally. Fry them until brown for 10-15 minutes.
- Add mushroom to barley and stir well, serve with crumbled feta and/or cilantro.
Cooking time: 45-50 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 3-4