Another pretty good week, I’ve felt pretty content for most of it, though to be honest I can’t say anything all that exciting has happened! It’s just been an enjoyable week of life.
New things I’ve learnt this week
- I learnt a little about phosphorus and its role in the body. Interesting to read that it makes up about 1% of an individual’s body weight (that’s about 530g of phosphorus dispersed within me – what an odd thought!) and is predominantly used for building bones and teeth, though it also works with B vitamins to aid kidney function, muscle function, and nerve signaling.
- I stumbled upon this great little informative video on the science behind muscle growth and strength – or, more specifically, the role of myostatin in the development of muscle. It also raised some interesting questions about the potential for myostatin supplementation. Short and sweet, no nonsense, and entertaining. Why don’t schools teach in this manner?!
- Ben taught a seminar on knee injuries and while I knew most of the principles and certainly the exercises (as I demonstrated them!), one little “fun fact” in particular stood out to me; that 60% of cadavers, when examined, are found to have a meniscus injury, most of which will be completely unknown to the individual. With ten of us in the room at the time, it was pretty ominous to think that six of those present would at some point develop damage to their meniscus, if they hadn’t already. Ben put it into perspective really effectively when he reminded us that if we have ten clients, that means six of them are likely to have trouble with their meniscus, hence the importance of being aware of rehab and “prehab” protocols.
New things I have eaten this week
- I finally tried Village Pizza! I could never face ordering from them when Ben and I were regulars at Karma Free, and when they shut down we were just a bit pizza’d-out for a while and I had read some negative feedback on various media… But last Sunday (right after I posted last week’s Sunday thoughts), we just couldn’t figure out what to make or what to eat. So – pizza! I just couldn’t face a pizza covered in fake meat products, so I went for a “Margherita Plus” – basic cheese and tomato pizza with four toppings – to which I added aubergine, artichoke, spinach, and sundried tomatoes. We got 3 for the price of 2 in their meal deal, and got three huge and delicious pizzas for just £26! After days of obsessing over it – not even just me, all of us – we gave in to a Friday evening treat, and it was just as good as we had remembered. Oh dear.
- It’s been a while since I tried a totally new-to-me item or ingredient, so I was pretty excited when I was given no choice but to buy some sweet white miso for some recipe testing I’m doing. I had never tasted it before, but as soon as I did I knew what my cooking of oriental-style dishes had been missing, and I guess I am closer to understanding what “umami” is now. I bought Clearspring, the only one I could find, and while it’s expensive I think it’s definitely a great ingredient to have on hand.
- Just earlier as we came home from a family afternoon I had my first ever slice of barmbrack, an Irish fruit loaf that Ben got very excited about. Unfortunately it was a packaged store-bought version, but it was still delicious – full of sweet moist dried fruit which is definitely a big thumbs up from me! I can’t wait to try an authentic homemade version someday…
Other highlights this week
- I guess in a strange way, embarking on a month of intermittent fasting has been quite a cool thing going on this week. Although I don’t enjoy the fast days, I do have fun concocting the most satisfying and most healthy 500kcal meal plans, and after a week of struggling with my appetite it’s been nice to force it into submission, even if it is a bit of a band-aid approach. Plus, it means I enjoy my food on the non-fast days even more. Can I call it a highlight? Not really, but it certainly has been an interesting defining element of this first week of February.
- Friday night was inexplicably wonderful. It was a most uneventful evening; I trained earlier in the day (a good session, which helped), went home, got changed, went to a pub for barely two hours to say goodbye to a friend, got home to Ben who had ordered pizza. We sat and watched a Masterchef re-run and then watched Mad Men and went to bed slightly too late but not extravagantly late. After a week spent with a house full of people, it was nice to just be peaceful I guess.
- Skyping with my friend Eilidh on Saturday was cool. I don’t often take the time to sit down and catch up by phone or video call with people I love, so it’s nice to just sit and talk and not worry about other things you could or should be doing.
Just a short one from me tonight; I have two shepherd’s pie-inspired dishes in the oven (smashed meat-free meatballs and peas in a homemade chicken-style broth and tahini gravy – plus sautéed wild mushrooms for me – topped with a creamy tomato polenta), and I can’t wait to get away from the computer and enjoy some TV with Ben. Tomorrow is a fast day so I will mainly be glued to the computer – tune in tomorrow evening for an update!
In the meantime, I hope you have all had a lovely week and that next week gets off to a great start 🙂