Friday, February 13, 2009

Good workouts and TV cooking shows

Last night, as planned, I hopped on the treadmill and just started running. I managed to watch 3+ cooking shows on cable while I ran 10 easy miles. Many years ago, I watched cooking shows on PBS every Saturday morning. I would get up early, run with the running club I belonged to, get some breakfast, and then come home to watch cooking shows. Then, inspired by those shows, I'd go grocery shopping on Saturday afternoon.

These days, I hardly ever watch TV and I don't see cooking shows very often. So, last night was kind of interesting, but at the same time, scary. Overall, the shows just weren't that good. The hosts seemed to be missing some passion for what they were doing.

The first show was an Italian lady whose famous name I should remember. She made three dishes - two pastas and a salad, and each looked great. The theme was dishes that guys could cook to impress a girl on Valentine's Day and it was well done. She seemed excited about what she was doing, and if I was single, I'd be glad to cook a Valentine's Day dinner for her.

The next show was the Barefoot Contessa lady. The show was informative, she seemed engaged and happy with what she was doing, and it was a good show. She prepared Coq au Vin in a very classic style and I actually learned a trick that I can use during the show.

Another show was Paula Deen, who was cooking Thai food. One of the dishes that she made was Pad Thai, a dish that I love but I rarely cook because my son has a peanut allergy, and I don't eat noodles very often anymore. The version that she made was not well done at all, IMO, and by the time she was done, it didn't even look appetizing. She had clearly oversoaked the noodles and they fell apart as she tossed the dish. Her soup didn't seem very appetizing, and her coconut flan with sauteed bananas seemed easy and tasty. But, something seemed wrong about this southern lady trying to cook Thai food.

Last came the well known Rachel Ray. I know she is immensely popular, especially her techniques for quick and easy meals. But, she seemed bored out of her mind by what she was doing. She kept saying the same thing over and over again. The food seemed interesting and healthy, and yet despite her popularity, I found her very boring. I just did a Google search and it seems that she has quite a few people who don't like her. I get the impression that she is popular based more on her appearance and personality rather than anything else.

Apparently, I'm not missing much by not watching FoodTV or whatever it's called.

My 10 miles put me at 15 easy miles for the day.

This morning, I lifted as planned: nothing special, just my scheduled workout. I'm through 14 workouts in an 18-workout cycle, so my body is pretty well adapted to the work. It's important to change lifting routines frequently enough that your body is challenged enough. I'm going to finish this cycle and then take one week off from lifting - the week that I run my snowshoe marathon. After that week, I'll start the next cycle from the book I'm using right now.

Tonight, I'll do a short but very intense treadmill workout. I'll warm up and then do 10 x 1 minute hard with 1 minute of rest.

And then, I'll go skiing all weekend. It's going to be a crowded and icy weekend. Tomorrow is the busiest ski day of the season at the mountain. Our next potential snowstorm isn't until Wednesday and we lost a lot of snow this week. My driveway is now solid ice. My roof is clear of snow for the first time since Christmas week. Some Vermonters are starting to talk about spring and sap runs. I'm still thinking about big snowstorms.


David Ray said...

We like to watch Alton Brown on Good Eats. And we like to watch Iron Chef just long enough to hear the "secret ingredient" announced.

Jamie said...

I agree about Rachel Ray being somewhat overhyped. However, I'm still a big fan of the food network!

Enjoy the skiing. Hope the tourists don't get in the way too much.