Monday, November 1, 2010

Peanutty Noodles & the Get Up and Move Challenge

Well, today is the big day! It's November 1st, which is the kick off day for National Blog Posting Month AND the kick off day for my 30 Day Challenge to all of my readers: Get Up and Move.

What are these two things? National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) challenges bloggers to post every day (30 days) during the month of November. As for Get Up and Move? Exactly what it says it is. I'm challenging myself and all of YOU to get up and be active for 10 minutes (the first 10 days of the month). We will gradually progress to 30 minutes, but for right now -- only 10 minutes. That's it. Each day, I am going to post a diet and exercise related tip, debunk some common myths, investigate popular diet fads, among other health-related topics. We will be focusing on getting healthy, not solely on weight loss or diets. (For more info about what's going on, check out my post from yesterday with all the details.) Never fear, my regular food posting will continue on as usual, the challenge is just an extra bonus and can be found at end of every post throughout the challenge.

I thought we would start off the month right, with a tasty dish that's full of flavor but not so much on calories. It even involves peanut butter. Which gets my attention straight off the bat. You can always add chicken or tofu to this dish if you're not feeling the meatless version.

Peanutty Noodles
Adapted from: Cooking Light, May 2000

1/2 cup matchstick-cut carrots
1 tablespoon vegetable oil, divided
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup natural-style peanut butter
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
1 teaspoon garlic chile paste (such as sambal oelek)
Cooking spray
1/2 pound frozen broccoli
1/2 pound frozen snow peas
1 pound linguine, uncooked

Bring a large pot filled 3/4 full with water to a boil. Add in linguine and cook until al dente according to the package directions. Drain.

In a small saucepan, heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium heat. Add garlic, and sauté for 30 seconds. Add ginger, broth, peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, and the chile paste; stirring until well-blended. Reduce heat and simmer for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally until slightly thickened. Removed from heat and keep warm.

In a large skillet coated with cooking spray, heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat. Add broccoli and snow peas; sauté 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add carrots and cook another 3 minutes. Remove from heat. In a large bowl, combine vegetable mixture, peanut butter mixture, and linguine; toss well. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serves: 8

Usually when sambal oelek is involved, the recipe adds a ton, leaving my mouth on fire. I was surprised to see it only called for 1 teaspoon this time around. Which gives just a little bit of a bite to the dish. Next time I might even up it a little bit.

Nutrition Facts
Amount per serving
Calories 309Calories from fat 102
% Daily Value
Total Fat 11.3g17%
Saturated Fat 1.9g9%
Trans Fat 0.0g
Cholesterol 41mg14%
Sodium 692mg29%
Total Carbs 40.1g13%
Dietary Fiber 3.1g12%
Sugars 3.5g
Protein 12.8g
Vitamin A 33%Vitamin C 66%
Calcium 5%Iron 18%

So, you have challenged us to work out for 10 minutes. What type of things can I do? And why on earth did you pick November?

First and foremost, let me be clear. I'm not asking you to go out and run 3 miles. Or go mountain biking. Or lift heavy weights at the gym. While you are more than welcome to participate in any of those activities, you don't have to. And there is most definitely no gym membership required. Here are a few ideas for things to do in 10 minutes to get that blood flowing:

  • Go for a walk around the block when you get home from work
  • Go for a walk around the block during your lunch
  • 8 Minute Abs (there are several "8 minute" videos out there if abs aren't your thing)
  • Walk up and down a flight of stairs
  • Yoga (FitTV has Namaste Yoga every weekday at 6pm, or I'm sure YouTube has plenty)
  • Annie from Annie's Dish suggests the National Body Challenge videos found on Hulu, which are conveniently right under 10 minutes for a more intense workout.
  • If you have younger kids, take them to the playground and play with them rather than watching from the bench.
  • If you have older kids, go for a walk around the playing field or park or neighborhood while they are at sports practice. This way you can watch and get some exercising in.

Don't make working out a chore, if you don't like doing a particular activity, switch it up and find something else that you love!

What kinds of things do you like to do that gets you up and moving?

As for the "why November?" question. I know it's cold, and dreary, and not quite nice outside, which makes it that much harder to get out and do things. However, just because it's not sunny and 70 out doesn't mean we can put our health on hold until it warms back up. Unfortunately things don't work that way. However, if we can show ourselves that we can find ways to stay active even when it's not nice out, think how much easier it will be when it is!


  1. Awesome! I like this idea and it's just in time for my goal to get moving, get in shape, and stop looking (and feeling) like a major lardbutt.

    Love the idea of blogging every day as well although, I doubt have enough content in my brain to write daily. Then again, that's why it's called a challenge.

    Thanks for sharing and getting the brain thinking.

  2. Thanks so much for giving me the kick in the behind I needed. I read your blog this morning and told myself that now is the time. I'm happy with my weight but need to move more (it's hell getting older).

    So my two puppies dogs and I walked around the neighborhood at a brisk pace before I got ready for work. They loved it and I felt great just doing something.

    Thanks again.

  3. The peanutty noodles sound really good and would be easy for me to make and take to work for dinner. Thanks!

  4. Great recipe and great challenge! I walk at least 2 to 3 miles a day (at least 4 days a week) and I have been doing it for over 4 years. Although it's hard to get started, it's easy to get addicted to the routine! Maybe I will step up my routine a little....thanks!

  5. It's amazing about your blog!
    I love that you post with kcal and all that stuff!
    Photos is so beautiful!!!
    Wish you luck!



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