What I Ate ____ (yes, really)

When I asked on Facebook what kind of non-running things y’all wanted to hear about, there were a lot of really good suggestions. I’m still trying to get budget approval from Bri for “Target Splurge Thursdays” and am fighting with Windows Movie Maker (there’s no autocorrect for “awkward and nasaly-sounding”?) over the braid tutorial, so for now you get my take on the blog-popular “What I Ate _____” (fill in a day, it’s always the same).

Fear not, this is an OUaL-ified spin-off.

A look at what I shove down my pie-hole between regular beer and froyo feedings, brief background on my vegetarian history, and a teeny bit of “I’m not a nutritionist” PSA-ness.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I’ve been a “flexible vegetarian” since 2006 – bouncing around with varying levels of dairy and fish consumption. The past few years I’ve settled in as a Lacto-Ovo Pescatarian (includes dairy, eggs, fish) that adequately satisfies my needs for training, as well as balancing low-budget with so-much-good-sushi-and-seafood-in-SoCal-itd-be-a-sin-not-to-eat-it.

Actual screenshot from two of the… two days I’ve ever managed to complete a full food log. Just to prove it’s possible to eat balanced without grilled chicken anchoring every meal.

In an effort to keep this post relatively short and easy-reading, I’ll hit a couple points and then just jump right into the WIA__ pics.

  • There is an abundance of protein in the meatless world. I like mine from beans, eggs*, canned tuna*, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, peanut butter, and broccoli.  No Meat Athlete has a great page here on the topic.
  • Soy-based protein (tofu, tempeh, “fake-meat” products, etc) are easy and tasty but should be used sparingly and not relied on according to research my teeny, un-professional brain has read. I pan-fry tofu or tempeh for 3-4 meals/week and dig on some Morningstar burgers once a week or so.
  • CA is VERY veg-friendly – almost every restaurant has a meat-substitute on the menu, and stores are stocked with all the hippie foods we love. Life as a veg-head here is SUBSTANTIALLY easier than it was in Corntown, OH, but it seems the trend is slowly making its way across the country. Tofu for everyone!
  • I have annual bloodwork analyzed, and my vitamin/mineral levels have always tested normal except Vitamin D. I do not take a multi-vitamin, but do take vitD supplements for this reason.

Ok that’s enough. Picture time.

I eat the exact same bowl of oatmeal every day at work. Rolled oats from the bulk bin microwaved 60sec, add half a frozen banana (sliced), micro 60s, stir in a spoonful of crunchy no-salt natural peanut butter, micro 30s, add chia seeds and unsweetened coconut.

No, it never gets old.

If I workout before work I’ll eat half a Picky Bar in the car (and then have oatmeal at work), and on the weekends I’ll have a Picky Bar or PB/banana toast before Long Runs.

Mid-morning I’ll have a snack – just something quick and easy at my desk. I try to make this protein’y and low in carbs for no reason other than I’m all carb-filled from breakfast and likely having some for lunch.

Nuts/seeds, greek yogurt with berries, or a piece of fruit are regular accessories to my AM inbox-clearing/phone-calling/report-making.

Lunch is always some creation in the break room microwave or a quick trip out for a veggie sandwich or salad.

Those Green Giant frozen veg packs are perfect for throwing over leftover grains and slathered in hot sauce. Other staples include microwaved eggs on a sandwich thin and canned tuna over salad, despite my coworkers’ dismay.

By 3 oclock I’m always itching to put something crunchy in my piehole and distract me from work.

Popcorn (shown with Tapatio and black pepper – so good), granola bars, and crunchy fruit/veggies are favorites and easy to keep on hand or just throw in my purse on the way out the door in the AM.

Like breakfast, I’m a creature of habit at dinner. I usually want to eat right when I get home around 6, and since I like to run at night I need to get it out of the way early to give some time for digestion. No need to make the “don’t-puke-during-your-tempo” goal any harder than it already is.

Even when we go out, dinner is always some kind of protein veggie bowl/salad. For a culinary dummy and impatient fat kid, it’s easy to throw together and inexpensive to always have on hand.

Rice/quinoa/barley in the rice cooker, fresh or frozen veggie blend, grated parmesan, and an over-easy (“dippy”) egg or soy protein on top. Plus sriracha. Always add sriracha.

Before bed or after my workout I’ll usually munch on some dry cereal or hummus/veggies, but I didn’t take pictures of that for you. Use your imagination!

And of course, the everyday (coffee) and nearly-everyday (beer & froyo) staples in OUaL world.

So that’s that. Overall I’m a pretty healthy eater, but I do have my vices. And I DEFINITELY have days where I lay in bed feeling like a fat sloth because I ate candy all day at my desk or “accidentally” smashed four baskets of chips/salsa at dinner.

I mean c’mon.

Sarah OUaL


20 thoughts on “What I Ate ____ (yes, really)

  1. I loved this recap. I’m not vegetarian at all, but do eat meatless quite often. Love that we have the same love for Srirarcha, IPA, froyo, oatmeal, and Pick Bars!

    Next time you are in Seattle, we are doing Veggie Grill. Plan on it. :)


  2. I have no interest in ever giving up meat, but I don’t actually eat it all that often (maybe once a week?). Mostly out of laziness. I’m a huge carb eater- fast and tasty. But now that I’m running and working on losing weight/getting healthy, I’m starting to explore other ways to get protein in my diet that isn’t chicken and burgers (my staples). I was thrilled to see how much protein is in Greek yogurt and love making smoothies with that. And I’ve reconnected with tuna salad now that I’m not with my ex who basically forbade me eating it in the house around him.

    I’m surprised you have issues with Vitamin D since you’re outside running so much. I think they say you only need about 20 minutes of sun a day to have adequate Vit. D levels.


  3. What an interesting post girl. I can def relate. I don’t eat a lot of meat personally, but it’s not like I avoid it. I think it is just easier to prepare meatless items when cooking for one…I eat a ton of beans as well and greek yogurt? YES PLEASE


  4. you know, thanks to you, i tried tempeh and actually liked it. not a vegetarian but there are many days where i get sick of eating meat and like to change things up. this makes me want to get back into my cal/protein/fat/carb checking. perhaps i will start. curious though, I think i’ve seen on twitter that the hubs eats meat, right? do yall ever cook and eat dinner together? or just eat separately?


    • He eats really late during the week so we usually do our own thing. When we do eat together I’ll just cook the meat separately, or make half veg/half meat. Or just tell him to suck it up and eat his tofu like a good boy. :)


  5. What’s the scoop on chia seeds? My every. single. morning. oatmeal is otherwise very similar to yours (dried cherries and almond butter instead of bananas and peanut butter).


  6. Haha! Welcome to What I Ate….this is great! I am definitely a creature of habit too, I eat 2 different breakfasts, oatmeal or eggs and usually a sandwich with fruit for lunch. Dinner is where my variety is. I need to try quinoa and get into more veggie bowls. Great post!


  7. Loved this post. I am fascinated NY what other people eat!!! Especially other runners. I was a vegetarian for 13 years but eat meat now. Makes the protein thing easier for sure


  8. I frequently eat the same thing for days on end. I’m not a vegetarian but have found that eating meats other than chicken and fish can start to mess with my system when I eat them too much. And can I tell you how devastated I was to learn that I have egg “issues”? After being told to give up gluten and dairy by my doc, I clung to my eggs. Then I was tested for egg :( Damn. I am so sick of beans.


  9. I am a vegan and live in Cleveland, OH area. It is an extremely friendly vegan/vegetarian town! Very progressive and just b/c we are in mid-west does not mean we are old fashion or out of touch with new things and research… as a former Ohioan you know that, right. When you come back to visit let me know and I can show you around the vegan seen.

    The movie “Forks Over Knives” did a lot of filming in the Cleveland area and one of the researchers is from Cleveland. There is a large population of vegan plant based eaters with lots of resources in the area. Have you seen the movie? If not I highly recommend it!

    As a nurse and nutrition specialist be careful with your mercury intake related to fish intake and be careful with soy intake because it can mess up your estrogen levels.


    • You’re right – Cleveland has made an impressive turn in the culinary world, not just veg but all around. Unfortunately teeny farm town where I grew up (50mi SW of Cle) is still pizza places and greasy diner food, but they’ll catch on… eventually ;) A lot has happened since I left almost 3 years ago – I’d love to hear some of your must-visit spots for my next trip back in a few weeks!


  10. Thaaank you for being honest about splurging. Makes me feel better about my nightly glass of wine :) And coming off Halloween, those endless candy days…It’s SO refreshing to read a fitness blogger who is also human!



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