Health Blog Helper is Born
Happy Monday! I’m super excited to announce the launch of my new blog, one that went from conception to execution in a single weekend! The blog is called Health Blog Helper, and it’s all about stuff that we as health bloggers can do to make our blogs better.
In studying blogs in other niches, I’ve noticed that we have a lot to learn from them. I’ve been dying to start sharing what I’ve learned, especially about making our blogs more visible to search engines, something I’ve had incredible results with. But this type of information just doesn’t have a place on No Meat Athlete, since many readers aren’t bloggers. Solution: Health Blog Helper!
Non-bloggers: I may mention Health Blog Helper a few times here as it’s getting off the ground, but I’ll keep it to a minimum. Mostly, you’ll get the same old NMA that you’ve grown to love/tolerate.
Erin and I have felt really busy recently. Kind of funny, since you wouldn’t think a grad student would be too busy during the summer. But with running, blogging, visitors, and the news of Erin’s pregnancy, things have felt like a whirlwind for the past few weeks. And unfortunately, this has come at the expense of cooking. Summers are usually the time when I try out any and all kinds of new recipes, but over the past few weeks we’ve been eating out a lot and cooking some old favorites that we know are quick and reliable.
This weekend, though, we decided we’ve had enough. It’s time to start cooking again. With school starting up for me this week, we need to get back to diligently planning meals, because take-out pizza and veggie wraps aren’t going to cut it.
Last night we made something we’ve been meaning to try for a while, the lentil tacos that Sarah from Running to Slow Things Down guest-posted about back in July. In my comment on Sarah’s guest post, I even wrote that this would be the first lentil recipe I’d try. (It wasn’t, Snobby Joes was.) So lentil tacos were a long time coming.
Erin and I used to love taco night before we became vegetarian. But their slow progression from ground beef to turkey to TVP had really taken a lot of the ole! out of taco night. I thought the TVP tacos were good when we had them, but since we haven’t made them much since, I must not have liked them as much as I thought. Plus, the fact that TVP is so processed is kind of a turn-off. But the lentil tacos have breathed new life into taco night.
Let me tell you, mis amigos, these things were awesome! Erin went with the hard tacos, I chose soft corn tortillas. The lentil mixture had a unique sweetness to it, owing to the chopped raisins that were simmered with the lentils.
Two other great things about this recipe: First, the seasoning is just a combination of chili powder and cumin. So no more of those store-bought packets with who-knows-what preservatives and artificial flavorings. Second, lentil beans are a whole food (with lots of protein, if that’s your concern), so these vegetarian tacos don’t feel fake at all. Hey, people eat bean burritos all the time, right? So lentil tacos aren’t nearly the stretch that they might seem. And since Erin and I were told that our baby is roughly the size of a lentil bean, they hold a special place in my heart at the moment! Though I guess eating them in tacos makes that thought a little weird…
Moving on. If you try this recipe, you’ll probably need a lot more liquid (either veggie stock or water) than the one cup that the recipe calls for. We did.
Five Weeks Left
I’m in a strange state of denial about the Wineglass Marathon being scantly more than a month away. Seeing as it will be my sixth full marathon, there’s really no good reason for any nervousness. But I suspect that it’s because it will be the first time that I truly feel I have a decent shot at qualifying for Boston, my singular goal for my entire running life. In the past, I’ve gone to bed the night before marathons thinking “I don’t expect to qualify tomorrow, but I guess there’s always a chance.” This time it will be different. Throughout this entire training program, I’ve expected to qualify. Anything less, much as I hate to say it, will be a disappointment. And I think it’s that thought that’s hard to face.
The good news is that my training is going really well. I hit the paces I wanted to on my track and tempo runs this week, and my second-to-last 20-miler is tomorrow. As far as I can tell, I’m injury free. I’ve even had some success in dealing with that nasty blister of mine, using Blister Shield, foam pre-wrap, and sports tape.
So things are good, but the great big shadow of the marathon looming on the horizon is just a little bit unnerving.