We have the best weather here in North Carolina: 4 distinct seasons, with a short steamy summer and short just-barely-too-cold winter. The rest of the time we have beautiful fall + spring days. (And maybe a hurricane 😉 ) Today is the most perfect day I can image. I woke up to 65* and biked to the gym. There are fall-like shadows out there, the sky is bright blue. We’re nearing 73* now. Perfect for shorts, but not too hot. The only place I think has better weather is Southern California (and that’s if you don’t mind missing a wintery Christmas!)
So I decided to attend step class once more before I have to be in nutrition class during the time slot. Today I used a double step height, but my heart rate was only 5-10 beats higher. I was a rockstar with the choreography today! We used a lot of the same moves as last week so I was much more comfortable with the turns and skips and hops. I think the total calories burned in about 50 minutes was about 220. I also did a little ET while I waited for the class time to come, and then biked home.
Once home I made the most delicious bowl of oatmeal. It had all of my favorite characteristics: creamy oats with lots of things to chew suspended inside, sweet from banana, a chewy topping, and PB on the spoon for richness.
I also tried a new secret ingredient: vanilla bean paste! BethT recommended I try this and i picked up a jar at Williams-Sonoma from a gift card leftover from our wedding! (It now only has $5 on it 🙁 ) I love how this paste puts specks of vanilla bean in the oats. The first ingredient is sugar, but I only used a teaspoon. I might use less next time too just to make it last longer. But it was definitely more fun than plain old extract. We have 3 kinds of extract that I rotate: Mexican vanilla, some other foreign kind the husband’s grandmother gave us in a jar, and regular pure vanilla. I love the Mexican if you get a chance to try it! It’s a rounder vanilla-y flavor.
The Perfect Combo:
- 1/3 cup dry oats + 1/3 cup 1% milk + 1/3 plus 1/4 cup water (add more for raisins)
- Pinch salt
- 2 tbsp ryeberries
- 2 tbsp raisins
- 1/2 really ripe banana (what made it so spectacular!)
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
- 1/5 or so of pom-walnut granola plank
- Spoonful PB
Plus some reheated leftover coffee that was terrible but I drank anyways –
Have a terrific Tuesday!!