Posted by: saramcglothlin | May 7, 2012

To Paleo or Not to Paleo

That is my question.  First of all let me just say that I know this blog is supposed to be centered around moderation.  That being said, I categorize the Paleo Diet more towards the “extreme” end of the spectrum.  I am not a fan of (although in my dieting days have definitely tried) eating plans that totally eliminate certain foods/food groups.  I whole-heartedly believe you should not restrict anything from your diet that you don’t want to.

So why do I bring it up you ask?  More on that in a minute.  But first, on to my favorite part of the day.

The 5:00 AM Workout

Yes you read correctly.  On most days of the work week, I get up and head to the gym at 5 AM.  When my closest friends call me crazy, I respond by saying “if I don’t work out, you will see crazy.”  Kidding…but like I said in my last post, exercising clears my head, and working in a high-stress industry like I do, it starts my day off right, allowing me to tackle any rediculously rude client issue with more of a sense of calm than if I didn’t.  Plus, I get my afternoons/evenings to do things that I enjoy (going out to dinner, grabbing drinks with friends, going to the movies, baking) instead of having to drag myself to the gym with the after-work crowd.

Usually I alternate days of cardio with days of strength training.  Today was a lifting day, which I have grown to love because how strong it makes me feel.  I started off with 10 minutes on the elliptical, followed by an arm workout I recently found on fitsugar.  Then I included 30-second jump roping intervals, 2 sets of 10 squats each, and leg lifts.  Done!

Since I eat 2 meals a day and mostly all snacks at my desk at work (man that sounds unhealthy), I pack everything before I leave each morning.  On today’s menu:

Oatbran made with 1/2 c coconut milk, 1/2 c water, 1/2 smashed banana, 1 egg white, strawberries, almond butter blob:

I know it is a funny thing to care about, but I miss the days when I could eat breakfast at home in pretty bowls.  Oh well, Tupperware for now!

Since I rarely  stay hungry more than 3 hours (no matter what I eat I swear!) I always have a mid-morning snack.  Everyday Today I had Fage and carrot sticks (I am on a carrot stick kick, but I welcome new snack ideas!)

For lunch, I normally pack a big salad.  I have found that eating a salad in the middle of the day works for me.  If I eat something really carb-heavy, it drags me down, makes me feels sleepy and crave caffeine.  Since I have gotten lazy lately, I usually make 4-5 salad-bar-salads at the grocery store each Sunday.  Using those as a base, I can add my own flavor flare.

Salad with mixed greens, cukes, broccoli, chick peas, edamame, grape tomatoes, grilled chicken, sweet potato slices, avocado, balsamic drizzle (I added the avocado at work):

So here’s where the Paleo discussion comes in.  As I was in the office kitchen adding avocado slices, a co-worker  asked if I was “Paleo.”  Yes, one word; apparently it has become its own descriptive adjective…looking down at my salad I said “No, it has sweet potatoes on it.”  He then went on to correct me saying that sweet potatoes were in fact allowed on the Paleo diet.  We then got into a 10-minute discussion about the “lifestyle” as they say, talking about the benefits, drawbacks, etc.  Don’t get me wrong, I think there is a lot to say about wanting to eat like our ancestors, who were free of cancer and obesity (as far as we know), more athletic, and probably had clear skin.    And who is to say that maybe one day I would try it for a couple of days month or so.  Until then, I plan to enjoy the grain-based foods that I love, especially the banana bread that I made this afternoon:

Banana Oat Muffins

  • 1 Cup Oats
  • 1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/2 tbsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/3 Cup Turbinado Sugar
  • 2 Egg Whites
  • 1/2 All-Natural Organic Apple Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Lite Soy Milk
  • 1/2 Cup Non-Fat Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Ripe Bananas
  • 1/4 Cup Walnut Pieces (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Mix all dry ingredients (up to sugar) in a large bowl.  In a separate bowl, whisk the remaining ingredients, leaving out the walnuts until the batter has formed.  Spray muffin tins lightly with cooking spray and pour evenly.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until tops are golden brown.
Loved this pre-dinner snack! The outside was a little crispy with a soft (not dry at all) inside…just how I like them!  I added some almond butter to one half and enjoyed while waiting for my dinner to cook…
I got this idea from Brittany’s blog, Eating Bird Food.  I knew I wanted to try it right away because although I love me a good sandwich/wrap, sometimes I don’t want the “breadiness” to cover up the inside’s flavor.
Black Bean-Collard Green Wrap with Curried Cauliflower.
1 Collard Green Leaf
1 Black Bean Burger Pattie (homemade or store-bought)
Goat Cheese
Whole-Grain Mustard
Cauliflower Florets
Olive Oil
Sea Salt
Curry Powder (to taste)
Preheat the oven to 475 degrees.  Coat the cauliflower florets in olive oil, sea salt, and curry powder.  Bake for 25-30 minutes, removing half way through to stir.
While the cauliflower was baking, I shaved down the stem of the collard green leaf (see picture below), which it allows it to be folded like a tortilla.  I then added mustard, goat cheese (or any condiment/cheese of your choice), and the black bean pattie.  Voila!
Question: Are there any particular foods you refuse to give up, or have had to give up to fit your diet?
I’m off to read the 2nd Hunger Games…goodnight!


  1. Your collard wrap looks delicious Sara. Thanks for trying out the recipe. 🙂

    By the way, the new blog is looking great!

  2. Love these recipes! I’m definitely making that curried cauliflower soon!

  3. […] myself to a Vegan or even Vegetarian diet (I’ve discussed this before in my post about the Paleo diet).  Sometimes life gets in the way and there are times/meals that are beyond my control.  For […]

  4. […] in order to take Minty  on an hour-long walk in the morning.  At first this worried me, because as I have posted before, starting my day with an intense, cardio-oriented workout is an important part of my day.  While […]

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