Priorities

Some days I feel like I need 30 hours instead of 24 just to get everything done. Since extra hours aren’t likely to appear, I’m just learning to prioritize the important stuff. I love being busy – working, freelancing, blogging, running, etc. but that also means I have to make choices about where I’m spending my time and money. Laundry? It can wait.  8 hours of sleep? Non-negotionable this week. And when it comes to shopping, lots of healthy foods are a necessity, but cute ballet flats…not so much.

To make my fruit & veggie purchases go the extra mile, I recently made the decision to join the West Harlem CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Members pay a fee in the early spring to help farmers with their planting costs and then receive boxes of vegetables throughout the summer and fall. I’ve opted for a half-share, so every other week I’ll pick-up a box of veggies. I won’t know what I’m getting (it depends on the harvest), but I’m looking forward to trying new foods and experimenting in the kitchen! Want to find a CSA near you? It’s a win-win situation – you’re supporting local farmers AND stocking up on healthy food.

Speaking of priorities, I was up late figuring out my tax return and forgot to charge my camera battery. Please excuse the iphone pics!

My breakfast cookie was much better sans Amazing Grass. The night before I mixed together 1/3 cup oats, 1 Tbs raw cacao, 1/2 packet splenda, Tbs dried cherries, 1 big scoop of Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter, a splash of almond milk, and 1/2 mashed banana. I let it hang out in the fridge overnight and then in the morning topped it with the remaining banana and Fage 2% yogurt. I didn’t think I would like the breakfast cookie – but I swear they’ve changed my morning routine. Love them!

breakfast cookie

Lunch was a special treat – office cafeteria salad! Hehe, doesn’t take much to make this girl happy. On top of a base of arugula, I added shredded carrots, mushrooms, parmesan roasted broccoli, quinoa salad, waldorf salad, cilantro chickpeas, feta cheese, croutons, and sriracha. Mmm, spicy!

salad

And a bag of crack sun chips.

sun chips

Mid-afternoon snacks were a cup of green tea, a mini kit kat, and a kashi granola bar. And an adora calcium supplement!

kitkat

granola bar + calcium

It was a beautiful night for running in Central Park (60 degrees!) and the time flew by as Jacqui, Megan, and I explored the bridle path. My legs were feeling a little creaky at first, but better by the end. I ran for about 1 hour, 10 minutes – maybe 8 miles? I don’t have a Garmin, so I don’t really know.  Making time to run and spend time with friends? A priority for sure.

Once I got back to my gym, I treated myself to a fresh juice. The “skin tonic” juice contained apple, celery, spinach, kale, and ginger. Gah!! I want my own juicer SO bad.

greenjuice

As soon as I got home I immediately dug into a box of Kashi TLC crackers – I was hungry! Making a time intensive dinner was not a priority tonight, but consuming something quick and tasty was.

Kashi TLC's

I snagged a HUGE 1lb+ sweet potato  from Whole Foods, cubed it up, lightly coated it in canola oil, and roasted for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Once done, I drizzled coconut butter on top. Oh goodness, this was amazing. The sweet coconut flavor paired wonderfully with the ‘tater.

sweet potatoes

I was going to bake something for dessert, but decided that going to bed early was more of a priority. Instead of homemade cookies, I had a few Tablespoons of Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter straight outta the jar. Protein? Check. Fiber? Check? Delicious? Absolutely! Tastes like Reese’s 😉

dark chocolate dreams

Thanks to brightroom, you can have a gander at my race day pics. These two are definitely my fav – I got lost in the crowd in the other photos!

Bringing it home – mile 12.

NYC 1/2

The finish line (my official chip time was 1:35:10).

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 10.27.11 PM

Hooray it’s Spring! Check out the best fruits and veggie picks for runners.

Question: What are your priorities? Sleep, exercise, healthy eating, housework, time with friends? What’s the first to go when you’re busy and stressed?

  • Claire

    This might be a weird question, but how do you eat your breakfast cookie? Do you pick it up, like it’s an actual cookie, or do you use a fork/spoon. Totally random, sorry, but I am curious!

  • Sweet potato and coconut butter – amazing!!
    That food box plan – equally amazing!
    This post has come at such a good time – I’m struggling to fit everything in, so it’s good to hear about how other people prioritize. I’d say healthy eating is number 1 for me, cos it’ll make everything else better; if I’m well-fueled, I’ll run better, write better, concentrate better….gotta start at the beginning!
    It’s still darn hard to find time for everything though :s
    Oh, and running is right up there – good de-stressor!

  • Claire – I use a spoon to eat the breakfast cookie and yogurt. It’s definitely not hard enough to pick-up with my hands. But if you pop it in the freezer for a few minutes….it might firm up!

  • Jacqui

    Ahh I’ve been looking to join one of these CSA type things ever since I moved here and I didn’t know what it was called! HOW DID YOU KNOW. I’m looking into it right now to see if there is one near me…

    That skin tonic juice sounds delicious, and *exactly* what I was craving last night after our run. Today I was proactive and I brought my jar of trader joes superfood/green drink thing to work with me for post-run fuel later.

    Ok so my priorities are a pretty out of wack right now, but they are (in order):

    Studying
    Eating
    Running
    Cleaning/house-work
    Friends
    Sleep

    Heh, it’s definitely bad that sleep is at the bottom of the list…

  • i am gonna check out the csa thing…..been meaning to for a while. thank you for reminding me!

  • I need to eat, and sleep, and exercise always to feel on top of things, so those would be my priorities

  • I hear ya on there not being enough time in the day! Usually when I’m super busy, as I am now, my relaxation time goes first. This usually means I don’t get to catch up on my Netflix or weekly television shows for a long time…

  • First to go when I’m busy and stressed is exercise and time spent with friends which sucks because they are also the main things which keep me sane! I suppose because I love doing them so much, they sometimes seem like treats or some such nonsense.

    Normal priorities: spending quality time with loved ones, eating well, sleep, running, yoga, films/comedy, sunshine.

  • I really appreciate this article because we all know how hard it is to prioritize our day and feel good about it. But, I think like you mentioned, the main point is to live healthily and do that by going on runs with friends, etc. I try to always put friends and family first and your health will likely follow 🙂

  • Love the race pics, they came out great.

    I need to get some of that peanut butter!

    I’m like you and am busy busy busy and work a lot (2 jobs) so I need to prioritize! mine are, relationship time, family time, sleeping time and exercise time. Also, friends and fun time is in there, too but they are usually the first to go.

  • I’m just like you! So busy – blogging, freelancing, work, blah!!

    That sounds VERY cool. I wish there was something near me like that. I’m so looking forward to the farmers market opening up again where I live!

  • My priorities- school, working, interning, exercise… though sometimes I feel like I never stop- I just got done with all my school stuff and now I’m being thrown into work to “make up” for all the time I took off:( Ugh! But such is life:) haha, you can handle whatever comes your way! i promise:)

  • Your breakfast cookie sounds delish! Dark Choc Dreams is heaven. I really have to try this recipe sometime, but have to pick up a few of the ingredients.

    Your pics from the race are great!

    Eating well and fitness are definitely a priority, as well as getting time with my husband. I think those are top 3. Unfortunately, time with friends usually gets pushed aside when I’m really busy, so it’s great if they’re runners too and we can catch up while running!

    Sounds like you have your priorities all figured out!

  • Kacey

    I know exactly what you mean about 30-hour days, I’m usually looking for one most weeks. Definitely have to pick and choose which activities are most important to me (sleep, excercise, friends, eating healthy, and a very far away last – -housework), to get in the good stuff.

    And you will absolutely love the share, it’s so fun getting a suprise of fresh goodies straight from the farm!

  • time with friends is the first to go…

  • GREAT racing pictures!! Love them!

    Working out and sleep are 2 things I WON’T compromise on! The things that tend to fall to the wayside are chores (i.e. laundry, vacuuming, etc…) and cooking (I can eat a sandwich or make a quick omelet or something).

  • Sadly, sleep is one of the things that seems to get cut into on busy weeks… I know that’s awful!

    And when I “splurge” for lunch in the office cafeteria, I do the salad, too. No idea why it feels special- I bring my own salads all the time…

  • Yay for the CSA membership…I got my delivery yesterday and am so exicted to cook up some yummy veggies! I will likely be trying the sweet potato + coconut butter combo this weekend…sounds like heaven! I also ate some dark chocolate dreams straight from the jar last night…mmm!

  • Exercising is one of the first things to go when I’m short on time…but I will push all work aside to get enough sleep.

  • Great race girl!!!

  • Whoa! Are we the same person? I have had a few raw juices recently and cant shake the craving for raw juice! I just feel awesome after having them and they are delicious. I want a Breville too haha. TOO FUNNY! I think this summer is going to be my “summer of juice”. I HAVE to get one!

  • There is nothing wrong with peanut butter straight from the jar – in fact it is one of the better desserts I can think of 🙂 Peanut Butter & Co. has this amazing flavor, Cinnamon Raisin Swirl (or something like that). Omg delicious, especially with apples. Try it!

  • First, SO glad I found you! I just started running and am worried that I’m not eating properly since its been almost 3 months and I still struggle through my workouts. So I look forward to reading more and hopefully learning a lot!

    Second, I don’t know what I get rid of first, maybe housework? LAST is time with family and friends as they are the most important thing to me, and second to last is sleep. If I don’t get 7-8 hours I can’t function!

  • Sara

    Megan!

    I’m just catching up on your posts and I have to say CONGRATULATIONS on SMASHING your half-marathon PR! That’s a tremendous, tremendous time and I’m glad all your training paid off!

    Also, maybe I’ve been living in a hole (aka the Bronx) for too long, but I’ve never heard of CSAs. It sounds like a great cause and a win-win, thanks for the tip! I think I may just have to invest.

    To answer the question: when I’m prioritizing, the first to go is usually sleep (unfortunately!). Whenever possible, I think eating well, exercise, and time with friends are non-negotiable. 🙂

  • Unfortunately sleep is usually the first thing to go for me! Work is kind of non-negotiable (I wish it was sometimes!) and I would fall apart without my workouts and I am firing on all cylinders when I am eating well.

  • i’ve been debating joining a csa this year because i really love the idea of supporting a local farm – there’s one right near me at the seaport, but i can’t decide if i would miss getting to pick out my own produce too much. i need to decide soon though.

    i think housework is the first priority to go for me haha. probably followed by sleep. my social life is important to me, eating delicious and healthy food is equally important, and so is making time for exercise – without those 3 things, i become cranky and a lot less sane. although, sacrificing sleep does nothing for those under eye circles. 🙂

  • Love your race photos! My week has seemed extremely quick as well. The first to go for me is my style and appearance – so bad. When time is tight, I pick the most comfy clothes for work, shower and don’t touch my hair or make-up. I really ends up saving me some time. Second to go is t.v. – I’ll drop my favorite shows in order to get more sleep or get some chores done. Then things get tougher though – what is dropped next?!!

  • Ellen

    I need to hop on the breakfast cookie bandwagon—everyone seems to be eating them! And yes, I’ve been struggling to prioritize lately…I just want to do it ALL. Work usually comes first (I have to hustle like crazy because I’m a freelancer), and then I’d say exercise second. Sometimes I have to go a couple days without working out (which I HATE), but I usually try to make up for it by doing a double workout the other days. And sleep? Yeah…8 hours has not been happenin’ for me lately. I know I really need to work on that!

    http://www.firednfabulous.blogspot.com/

  • Morgan

    Your race pictures are awesome. Mine, not so much. It looks like someone punched me in the face before ALL of the pictures.

    The West Harlem CSA is a great idea! I think I may participate too! We should swap recipes and leftover veggies-(I live on the UWS.)

  • Great race pictures! I’ve looked into the whole CSA thing but I think I’m just going to continue my produce purchases at the farmer’s market near us that is open during those same months. The CSA closest to us is not super close and we enjoy hanging out at the farmer’s market on Saturdays anyway 🙂 We just joined a co-op where we are getting a lot of things fresh from a local farm. Things like meats, raw honey, eggs and milk. Keep us posted on how you like the CSA..I’d like to compare it to my local farmer’s market.
    Bobbie
    mymamaruns.com

  • If you figure out the secret to the 30 hour day, please, please share. Getting up at 4:30 to get it all done is just NOT working.

    Your race photos are great! Mine are… not.

  • shoo girl, i am TOTALLY feeling you on the priorities thing lately!

    priorities this weekend: hanging with friends, shopping, cleaning my apartment, buying new bedding.

    non-priorities: working out, freelance writing, e-mailing, blog reading.

    c’est la vie…tis’ is life! i love that you are joining a CSA! i want to join one but want to find someone to split a share with! i may have to look into seeing if i can get a 1/2 share…

    have a great week!