April 7th, 2008

London Biker

I made it to the gym again today

I've really been working to get my money's worth out of my short term gym membership and, hopefully, get my heart rate improved in time for my appointments (one this week and one next) at the cardio clinic. Today was the usual ten minutes of rowing and ten minutes of biking. My heart rate was 160 after the rowing - possibly too high, but we'll see what the doctor thinks I should be aiming for when I go in. For those who care (rowers?) my split was 2:35.2, which is a continuing improvement (so I guess I care - I'm keeping track to see if I get faster over time) and my strokes per minute rate was 28.

Why am I doing this? Because I'd like to see if I can control my heart rate though exercise, NOT diet, and not medicine, in part because my diet is actually really good. And, clearly, if it's just exercise that's making my heart so weak and flabby, then I want to make sure it's getting what it needs naturally BEFORE I try medicine.

Anyway, I made it three times easily last week and maybe even four (I can't remember), but I did also make it to Pilates on Friday for the first time in three weeks and it kicked my butt so badly that I was still feeling it (on the outsides of my thighs) on SUNDAY. Still, that means it must have been good for me - and as long as I'm feeling it in my muscles and not in my back, I think I'm doing alright.

"Sweet and sour" vegetables - a Sicilian dish

So ... I had beluosus over for dinner tonight, and I was all excited about making MMM lamb and MMM pasta with ricotta and pistachio on top. But I wanted vegetables. shadowdaddy came back from the store with zucchini and peppers, but how to prepare them? I dug through my two new Sicilian cookbooks and came up with this recipe: zucchine fritte in agrodolce (fried courgettes with a sweet and sour sauce). Ingredients: 1 kg/2 lbs zukes, 125 ml/8 TB vinegar, 1 tsp granulated sugar, 4-5 mint leaves (skipped), 30g/3 TBSP raisins, 1 clove garlic. Collapse ). So basically I put in a little oil, added the garlic, added the chopped peppers when the garlic started turning brown, added the zukes, cooked until everything was looking about done, added raisins, added some sugar and had a deep thought or two (I used coarsely granulated "raw" sugar), then poured a slop of vinegar over the whole thing and took it off of the stove (as recommended). Verdict? Surprisingly good! I bet it would have been even better with the mint, but, well, I didn't have any.

We spent the rest of the evening going over his resume and BSing about this and that and having some port. All in all, a good evening! Now I'm going to go sort socks ...