Pencil It In

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Plus a fun and super versatile recipe!

sweet potato black bean



When I’m not training for anything specific, I have long followed the blank training plan concept.  Basically, you create a blank plan with the number of days you’d like to exercise per week, and then you do whatever you want for your workouts, with the only goal being to fill in the blanks.


So I’ve kind of been following the same approach through this pregnancy, but as of last week, I started to schedule my workouts. 


Holy crap!  What a difference so far.  There’s something magical about penciling in your workouts, huh?  I moved my body six out of seven days last week (including one nice long recovery walk) and I’m hoping to do the same thing this week – a little SWEAT nearly every day. 


More than ever…


Exercise —> Happy Body —> Better Sleep —> I Don’t Want to Cry From Exhaustion By 2 PM


It’s obvious, but I can’t get over how much exercise is positively impacting my ability to sleep (BE GONE, pregnancy insomnia!) and thus the way I feel overall.   And penciling in my workouts really, really helps ensure that I actually get something done. 


Overheard this morning in power vinyasa yoga (which was a wee too challenging for me right now, and probably the last time I take a super flowy class for a while):


I liked that.  So true.


Okay!  Recipe time.


I love this sweet potato and black bean filling because 1) It’s super easy to make; and 2) You can use it in so many fun ways.  I like to roll it up in corn tortillas, as shown above, but you can stuff it into burritos with lettuce, add it to a cheesy quesadilla, serve it over rice, or even eat it with tortilla chips. 


This recipe makes about 4 servings.


Sweet Potato and Black Bean Filling




  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • Sprinkle cayenne pepper




  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Chop peeled sweet potato into bite-sized bites.  Coat in olive oil.  Roast in a small pan for 30 minutes.
  • When sweet potato is cooked, mix potato, red onion, black beans, cilantro, cherry tomatoes, and cayenne pepper in a bowl.
  • Serve and enjoy!


I know what we’re having for dinner!



  • Laura @ She Eats Well July 29, 2014, 3:10 pm

    I started ‘google calendering’ my workouts a few months back, and it has also really helped me prioritize them. Getting those endorphins (and you-time) is SO important. That is amazing that you exercised 6 out of 7 days – way to go!

  • Erica { } July 29, 2014, 3:40 pm

    I made something almost identical to that sweet potato filling last week and just ate it out of a bowl with a wedge of laughing cow queso and some avocado. So delicious!

  • Monica July 29, 2014, 4:24 pm

    C-HTP, that sure looks like pen to me.

    • Caitlin July 29, 2014, 4:26 pm

      Hehehe 🙂

  • Emily July 29, 2014, 4:36 pm

    I love that quote! And I’ve been battling the pregnancy insomnia too. This second baby is just kicking my butt! Thank you for the pencil it in tip; I tend to think I’ll work out daily/every other day, but unless I set my alarm clock or tell my husband that I’m going right after work, it doesn’t happen. Commitment is key, and it really does help with the sleepies!

  • Holly July 29, 2014, 5:06 pm

    That recipe looks so tasty! And I saw it at the perfect time because I was just pondering what to have for dinner tonight, now I don’t have to spend an hour searching for recipe inspiration 🙂

  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed July 30, 2014, 7:26 am

    I totally agree. I was going to CrossFit on a totally random schedule and it just wasn’t working. I was only getting there twice a week and I wasn’t satisfied. I’ve been following a tighter schedule for the past month and it has helped so much! I’ve been going 3 times a week and I think this week will be my first 4x week!

  • Jennifer July 30, 2014, 9:29 am

    I was just curious as to how you are determining that the recipe above makes 4 servings? I know the tortillas aren’t included in that necessarily but it seems very low calories wise to be 4 servings of dinner. I was just curious as to how you determine that.

    • Caitlin July 30, 2014, 12:16 pm

      I don’t think it’s a dinner – I think it’s a filling for something else, as stated in the post. I think you could get enough for about 8-10 corn tacos out of it. I ate it in three meals, so perhaps three and a half is a better gauge. I’ll edit it!

      • Jennifer July 31, 2014, 8:39 am

        Sorry, I misinterpreted the “I know what we’re having for dinner” underneath!

        • Caitlin July 31, 2014, 2:27 pm

          No worries 🙂

  • Alyssa July 30, 2014, 10:49 am

    I do the same thing with “penciling it in” except I just sort of use my brain as the “training plan”. In the summer it’s pretty easy for me because at some point during the day I just get off the couch and do some sort of exercise. During the school year when I’m balancing grad school and teaching and a second job then sometimes I have to use the calendar. This year I’ll be balancing a baby too and I hear they don’t always follow the calendar so we’ll see.

  • Shelly July 30, 2014, 3:56 pm

    I thought of you yesterday and made a workout schedule on my iPhone. In the reminders I put Workout 1, Workout 2, Workout 3, and Extra Workout. I hate scheduling, so this made me feel good!

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