Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Easy & Healthy Weeknight Meals with the Man Stamp of Approval!

Thanks for the Garmin advice from yesterday's post! I used to lock my bezel (I have the 405) during the winter months when I had long sleeves on, but haven't been doing that lately. That's probably the problem! Also...my TNT total went over $1,400 yesterday!

Since some of you have asked how I eat up all the veggies I stock my fridge with, I figured this week I would spotlight some of my favorite veggie centric meals that help fuel my training and at the same time don't gag my boyfriend.

As many of you ladies know, it's hard to cook for two when your significant other is the McDonald's and Coke type and you're the spinach and squash type. But it can be done!

Before I get into what we ate last night, I wanted to share my recent loot from heaven on Earth, Whole Foods.

I have been trying to stay away from this food mecca until pay day, but yesterday I just couldn't resist any longer. Plus I desperately needed some GREENS! Whole Foods, Earth Fare, other natural food stores as well as seasonal farmers markets are the best place to buy your produce. If you look hard enough, the fruit and produce is generally competitively priced.

Whole Foods loot!

1 bag of organic lemons for juicing as well as for the hummus I was about to make (this bag was a better deal than the same amount of non-organic lemons!), one 5 pound bag of organic carrots for juicing, 2 avocados, 1 box of Annie's Mac N Cheese (I have been craving mac n cheese for months...so when I saw it for $1.99 I had to get it.)

1 bunch of organic kale for Green Smoothies, organic quinoa for tonight's dinner, lentils from the bulk bin, 2 cans no salt added black beans (not organic, b/c they didn't have organic with no salt added), and 2 cans of no salt added garbanzo beans for my hummus appetizer! (All of this ran me about $23, not too bad for mostly organic.)

I quickly mixed up the hummus when I got home from the store in my food processor because we were both starving and I knew dinner would take a little while to prepare. I hated it as you can see.

In my hummus I used 2 cans garbanzo beans, some tahini, some olive oil, juice from two lemons, a bit of water, 1 garlic clove, some sea salt. YUMZA! Matt and I shared the above portion. He actually didn't hate it (his words), but I ended up eating most of this.

One of my favorite dinners to make for Matt and I is simple, easily adaptable to on-hand ingredients and packed with nutrition. Stuffed peppers! Since we bought a bag of six red and green peppers a few weeks ago, I needed to do something with the remaining peppers and I immediately thought of this weeknight favorite.

This time I was going to be using:
  • 1 cup dry quinoa, cooked (you can also use brown rice or any other small grain but I love the taste and texture of quinoa, plus it is a protein power house, perfect for athletes)
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 zucchini (we eat zucchini & summer squash at least 2 times a week, such versatile veggies!)
  • 1 yellow tomato
  • A little bit of Italian blend cheese for Matt's portion
  • 4 small slices off a Muenster cheese block for me
  • herbs & spices
On the side I was going to make pan fried tilapia (from frozen and thawed tilapia).

I started out by dicing up some veggies.

I bought four yellow tomatoes the other day at Harris Teeter for ridiculously cheap because they were going bad. All I had to do was cut off the bad spots and I had 4 yummy tomatoes for less than a dollar! This is a great way to get good quality produce for cheap. I also got 4 organic apples for less than a dollar --they were perfect for juicing!

Then I sauteed up the hard veggies in a little olive oil. I was planning on mixing the tomatoes in last minute and then baking the whole stuffed pepper, so I didn't want to saute them first because they would cook down too much.

I then prepped the peppers by cutting off the lids and scraping out the seeds and insides. I put it in a "greased" (with Pam) glass casserole dish in the oven to soften up a bit at 350 before adding the stuffings.
Then I started to dip the fish in one egg, and then a whole wheat flour/herb mixture to prep them for the pan...

...when I started to smell smoke & opened the oven to find that the drippings in the bottom of it had caught fire!! Of course I screamed for Matt and he came to my rescue with some baking powder...after I hastily removed my peppers.

Lesson learned: Clean out the oven from time to time so it doesn't catch fire...

Once that was handled I got back to the fish.

In the meantime I was cooking up some quinoa on the stove: 2 cups liquid for 1 cup dry quinoa. I usually cook my quinoa in stock but I was all out of bouillon so I went plain.

Once I knew everything was about finished, I sprayed the skillet with Pam and added the fish to "fry". I cooked them for about 7 minutes on each side. The key to pan frying fish is to let them cook thoroughly on one side before flipping them.

Since I was no longer "baking" the stuffed peppers like I usually do (wth a bum oven and all) I needed to heat up the tomato, so I popped it in the microwave for two minutes. Then I poured the heated tomato & the veggie mixture all together into a bowl with the quinoa. I added some herbs (this time I used herbs de provence, red pepper flakes & a bit of sea salt) and stirred it up.

And popped the peppers in the microwave for three minutes with some water in the bottom of the dish to steam them (since I wasn't baking them anymore...)

Once the fish was done, I stuffed up the peppers and added some cheese...

I used some muenster cheese on top of mine, I mixed some Italian blend cheese into Matts. There is usually some quinoa & veggie mixture leftover that we add to our plates. But I still have one serving left for lunch today.

And if you're wondering, Matt loves loves loves this meal! He even requests it on occasion.

So there you have it, delicious stuffed peppers that can be adapted for even the pickiest eater. If your oven doesn't catch on fire, what I usually do is bake the peppers on their own for about 15 to 20 minutes while I am preparing the stuffing, then bring them out and stuff them and pop them back in the oven until the top of the stuffing is a nice golden brown. But if you're short on time, microwaving the peppers in a shallow dish with a bit of water works in a pinch as well.

This looks complicated, but it really is simple. You can easily add some ground meat of your choice if you would like to the stuffing, or add in more vegetables. You can change it up with different herb and spice combos. You could stuff it with rice, cous cous or any other whole grain or even maybe a pasta if you're feeling daring!

I love this dish because its healthy, tasty and most importantly - it's man approved!

I didn't workout last night, although I felt like I could have! I surprisingly wasn't sore at all from Sunday's 12 miler but I wanted to cook dinner and get some things wrapped up at home.

Since I'm going all healthy on y'all this week, get ready for some posts on:
  • binge eating & how to avoid it
  • at least one "raw" recipe that will get the man stamp of approval
  • ...and of course more ways to sneak veggies into dinner without the men in our lives running for the nearest phone to dial Pizza Hut!
Anything else I should add to the list?

Monday, June 29, 2009

Weekend Wrap-Up: 3 Workouts!

Monday morning....not my favorite day. But I did have a great weekend and managed to get three workouts in!

Friday night I attempted to do some hill repeats on the bridge, and didn't get too far :) I basically ran almost a mile to warm up and then ran up the steep side of the hill, back down, and attempted a second run up. I gave up because it was Friday and it was hot :) Next time I do these I am going to do 1/4 mile repeats. Much easier than MILE repeats...what was I thinking.

Saturday I wasn't planning on working out, but around 2 pm I got bored of studying so I decided to go on a bike ride to work off my lunch. I was so glad I went! I managed to ride 12 miles and explored my soon to be new neighborhood. I wished I had brought a camera because it was so beautiful down on the marsh overlooking the river.

After the ride I decided to go return my new shoes that I was NOT happy with all last week. So I headed out to TrySports to see what I could find. This time I remembered to bring my old Adidas that I trained for (and ran) the last marathon in. The very helpful Diego looked at my tread and told me that I had way too much arch support and was rolling onto the outside of my feet when I ran (I forget which kind of pronating that is...) So he told me I basically needed a shoe with no support, and could possibly go with some orthotics or insoles after I tried them out on their own.

I ended up with a shiny new pair of Saucony ProGrid Rides. I freaking love them!

They're light and they have a nice sized toe box which is essential for long runs because your feet will swell. I also got a 1/2 size larger than the Asics I was returning. They felt fab on my feet during the run yesterday. I may not even need insoles! Plus they're a pretty silver and pink :) AND I got $40 back!

Sunday morning I woke up bright and early for my long run with my TNT group. We had 10 miles on the schedule that day, but we ended up taking a bit of a detour to run through the Harbor Fest down on Concord Street to see the tall ships in the harbor. I love tall pirate-like ships, they always remind me of The Goonies! (Only one of the best movies ever made.)

My Garmin is SERIOUSLY not liking the heat and how much I sweat. Every time I take it out when its hot for a long run, it gets really cranky and starts yelling at me and switching screens. I have reset it multiple times so I may have to send it back in to Garmin. I'm going to try getting a wrist band to put underneath it to possibly shelter it from my sweat??

It's odd to me because I was under the impression these $300 watches were MADE for athletes. Huh. Anyways, that was annoying. Luckily once we were done with the run it came back to its senses and let me know we actually ran about 12.2! (I did a little more than the team because I ran to the starting point from my apartment and then ran back.)

This time I succumbed to the walk/run method and it was actually nice given the heat and humidity. Plus we were able to keep a pretty decent pace during the running portions. Our Coach went a bit further at convincing me to train with the walk/run method druing the run:
  • If you train with walk/run, you recover faster and can get in more miles during the week. (This is so true, I felt fine all day yesterday and today even though that was my longest distance run since the marathon May 2nd. In fact I will definitely be working out tonight, something I never do on Monday's after long runs.)
  • You don't have to (and she said I wouldn't) run the actual marathon using walk/run.
  • Once we get up to higher mileage, I could possibly start out half of the run doing walk/run and then finish the second half with a strong consistent run.
So all in all I may be convinced, it was nice to actually run with the group this time and get to know everyone better. But I guess the real test will be if the walk/run method can actually translate into me RUNNING the whole marathon.

After a much-needed shower (I was DRENCHED in sweat! Mid-run I realized I was sloshing in my shoes....so gross.) and a short nap....Matt and I headed out to the downtown Charleston chapter of Habitat for Humanity's Pig 'N Pluck!

Basically it was at the greatest locale in Charleston (in my opinion) Bowen's Island Restaurant.

The restaurant actually burnt down a few months ago and they are currently rebuilding it, but they still have their docks and covered shelter on the dock where the Bluegrass band played.

It is just gorgeous. Right on the water, on the marsh. I love Charleston. Check out the crappy iPhone pics. (I need a new camera.)

Matt enjoyed the Hometeam BBQ. (As did I.)

Beautiful Lowcountry marshes.

Kids even enjoyed the day!

Sandy and Jason stopped by!
There was lots of beer...And Matt made some new friends! (and apparently leaned on some paint somewhere...)

Although the pics look dark it was actually REALLY sunny and hot. I belive it was 98 yesterday? I worked the first hour at the registration table (I'm on a Habitat committee) and was sweating bullets until the hour was up. Then I went to chill on the dock with the breeze. We hung out from 3 to almost 8 yesterday and we were exhausted by the time we got home.

Great weekend, great weather, great workouts. What more could a girl need?

This week I'm planning on doing some health + nutrition related posts so stay tuned!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Photo Friday: Dessert Charity Night

12:30 AM Wednesday night: Monkey bread FAIL.
(Do not use spingform pans and Grands biscuits for monkey bread. It will turn out like this. One.Big.Fat.Buttery.Fail.)

5:00 PM Thursday afternoon: Monkey bread REDEEMED!

The spread! Sorry for iPhone pics...
Monkey bread, lemon raspberry pie, blueberry pound cake, cupcakes, mini cheesecake bites (with Reeses in the middle!) and cookies. Holy YUMZA!

Between the donations under my door and last night, I raised approximately $450! Which brings my total up to over $1,000!
(I haven't exactly counted everything, so that's an estimate.)

We didn't have a crazy turnout, but everyone who came donated generously as we stuffed our faces and watched the MJ coverage.

A big thank you to those of you who came :)

Have a good weekend! I'm off to do some hill repeats after work!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

You Are What You Eat

Also...wanna see what's in my fridge? Head on over to Carrots 'N Cake!

(It looks a little messy compared to everyone else....)

The big day is here!

Well it has been a busy week, and it's only going to get busier.

Had a GREAT solo run last night (my first run on my own since...um, too long ago) over the bridge. I'm still not where I want to be with speed or endurance, but I felt pretty good throughout the 5.5 mile run. I really, really needed a solid run yesterday as Monday and Tuesday I didn't have the time to hit the streets. (Tuesday night was our TNT social, it was fun! I even got some goodies for having over $500 in my fundraising account!)

I think my average pace last night was 10:02? Not bad. I took one short walk break. I need to be getting these shorter runs down in the 9-9:15 range though! I think I can do it.

What I did realize during my run was that just running the bridge (over and back) is not going to be sufficient for hill training (it's the only hill in Charleston. Truth.) If I learned anything with my first marathon, it was that this flatlander definitely needs to step up the hills!

So starting next week I will be doing hill repeats up the steep side of the bridge once a week. I figure a good workout would be to warm up for a mile and then do maybe 4 x .5 mile repeats? I would either jog or walk down the hill between repeats, then afterwards cool down for a mile. I'd say from the bottom of the hill to the peak, it's maybe .5 to .75 miles. I guess I could start with that and see if I could make it/need to add more.

Also, I tried my new shoes out again, this time I took out my old insoles. That helped a lot! But I still need more arch support so as soon as I can afford to order some new Superfeet I think that will make all the difference!

After my run I hit up the Teet for some last minute supplies for my dessert-a-thon tonight! Then I headed to Cupcake to pick up the cupcakes they donated for tonight's event. I'm glad I'm not a cupcake fiend because if I was, I would imagine it would have been hard to resist one of those last night...

I also stayed up baking/cleaning/arranging until past 1 AM! Needless to say I was struggling this morning. I still have some last minute things to do (and bake) before people start arriving at 7, so I'm hoping to leave work a bit early to finish things up.

In other news, we found an apartment! It's fantastic and actually a lot bigger than the one we have now for about the same rent. Plus, now we will have a washer/dryer AND a dishwasher!! Yeah, we live in a really small and older apartment so those luxuries have been a thing of the past for the last year...not any more! It is really nice and we are both super excited. We will be moving at the end of July!

We have a lot going on at work today so I will be busy busy 'till closing time. Hope to see some of you tonight! (Or either, see your beautiful names on my donation page :)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Quick update....

Uneventful weekend. Some studying, cleaning, grocery shopping and a 10 mile run with my TNT group. I bought new running shoes on Saturday and was excited to try them out Sunday morning.

Run went well, I found someone who runs (about) the same pace as me and didn't want to run/walk. Although I think I slowed her down a bit...sorry Katy! I had to take two walk breaks...I'm still not back to where I want to be as far as endurance goes. I ran 9.75 miles in 1:40, which is above a 10 minute pace...we were doing well until I made us walk! Grr...

New shoes didn't feel that great, so I'm going to give them one more shot tonight (if I have time) and will return them if they don't feel better.

Also found out on Thursday that we have to move out of our apartment when our lease is up July 31st...which was a complete shock to us as we were hoping to stay there another year. Apparently the owners are moving in to do some renovations so they can lease it for higher rent. So we have been scrambling to find a new place and did some house hunting after the run on Sunday. So...on top of everything else I have going on, I have to figure in there time to find a new place and moving. It's going to be a great summer....

Tonight I will be working on:
  • Sending out my TNT fundraising letters (late, I know)
  • Getting the apartment ready for the dessert charity night - I stuck flyers under everyone's doors in my building yesterday (12 apts on 12 floors!) so I hope I will have some people show up....
  • Going grocery shopping for the desserts I am baking (monkey bread and blueberry pound cake!) I'm hoping that Publix will donate some of it...
  • Laundry
  • Studying
  • ....and I hoped to get a run in there somewhere?
Tomorrow night is our TNT social at Taco Boy downtown...so unless I run in the morning I won't be able to run tomorrow. Busy week ahead of me but I'm ready to tackle it!

If you're in Chucktown, I better see you at my place Thursday night...email me for deets!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I wasn't going to post today but...

...I had a KILLER workout last night with my TNT group that I just had to share.

Coach Barbara is amazing, and incredibly fit. She has a daughter about my age but is WAY more in shape than I am! She's run over 30 marathons (including Boston) so she pretty much knows her stuff.

So I ran to and from the practice last night which was a little less than 2 miles from my apartment. (I almost had to sprint there because I was running late, so I was pretty tired before it even started.) We immediately got started on this killer workout.

Basically, you do each conditioning exercise for one minute. We did this on a track and used yoga mats for some of the exercises, and other things (fences, curbs) for some of the stretching and leg lifts. Check it out!

***UPDATED TO ADD: If you want a Word doc of this, let me know and I can email it out!***

1 Minute/1 Hour Conditioning Workout
By: TNT Coach Barbara Halpern

Cardio (10 Minutes)
Easy running
Chase (R/L) - Running sideways, shuffling heels together)
Fast grapevine (R/L)
Walking high leg kicks (R/L)
Walking alternating lunges
Backwards running
Forward easy run
Bleacher or bench step-ups (Step up right, step up left, step down right, step down left, repeast with left side up first) 2 minutes

Strengthening (20 Minutes)
Side-lying leg lifts
Side -lying leg circles -two directions, as big as you can make it
Side-lying, top leg forward toe-taps
**Do all of these for a total of 4 minutes, then repeat on other side**
Pelvic lifts up -on back
Pelvic lifts- right and left
Standing heel taps (R/L) - We used a curb for these, one leg on curb, other foot heel tapping the ground, about 4 inches down

Standing rear leg lifts (don't touch up leg to ground)
Standing rear bent leg lifts
Standing rear bent leg pulses
**Do all three then repeat on other side**

Core Strength (10 Minutes)
On back, limbs form X, R arm to L foot touch (then reverse)
Pike - Arms touch straight legs
Elbow to knee bicycle crunch

Tibetins (head lifted, straight legs lift, legs down, head down)
Oblique twist "chasers" with straight legs (Arms out, R leg down to R hand, L leg follows, L leg up, R leg follows, then reverse)
Swim (Just like superman, but use arms and legs to "swim," R arm up, L leg up, reverse)

Stretching (10 Minutes)
Standing single-leg balances (Eyes open and eyes closed, R/L) - This is to strengthen our ankles so they're less likely to twist!

Might be kind of tough to understand, so if you have any questions about a specific exercise, email me!

Also...so excited about my dessert charity night! Yesterday I found out that a local bakery, Cupcake, is donating cupcakes for the evening!

Woo hoo now I don't have to bake as much :) Thanks go out to Kristin, owner and cupcake extraordinaire, who is also training for an endurance event!

Have a great Thursday folks, almost the weekend!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Life for the Next Month...

Just as an FYI, especially in light of our #1 blog pet peeve, for the next 4 weeks I am going to be so busy I can't think straight. My job literally depends upon whether I can pass this test (that I failed the first time) that I'm taking again on July 13th. So every spare waking moment for the next four weeks I will have my nose in the books and will be up to my ears in stocks, bonds and the dreaded options.

On top of that, I am trying to get back into training for marathon #2, I have twice weekly training sessions with TNT, commitments with our local Habitat for Humanity, I am attempting to plan a running bloggers conference AND somewhere in there I have to raise $3,000+ dollars by August 23rd.

I'm not complaining. I love my life right now and I love to be busy. And I'm sure that most of you are laughing at me because you probably juggle all that on top of taking care of children, moving & starting new jobs, training for an ultra, race around the world or adventure race, transitioning to a morning runner or something equally taxing.

But all I'm saying is that I'm here, and I'm reading when I can and commenting when I can. I love this community and I love learning from all of you who undoubtedly accomplish more than I do daily. My posts may get sporadic because I am seriously (not kidding) OCD and cannot concentrate on more than one thing at once, but I'm not leaving!

I will be lurking your corners of the interwebs and stalking your every move, don't you worry.

Thank you so much for everyone's thoughts these past few weeks. I think last Thursday's post was the most commented one I have had so far. It was really interesting to see what everyone was annoyed with by blogs. Here is the rundown:
  • Bloggers who don't share the love & only communicate with their cliques
  • Blogs with a ton of grammatical errors
  • Blogs with weird font and backgrounds that make it hard to read
  • Blogs that you have to be a member of to comment
  • Shortened Reader feeds (such as in Google Reader) where the post is only a tease and you have to click through to read the rest
  • Bloggers who refuse to follow anyone on Twitter
  • Blogs that are only about giveaways
  • Confirmation words on comment boxes
  • Long posts and wordy posts with no pictures (hmm, maybe I should add a pic here, this one is getting long...Ok, that's better :)
  • Badly written blogs with tons of readers! (Gah, I hate this too, glad someone brought it up.)
  • Small font! (I agree, I'm sooo blind)
So let's all promise here and now we won't do these things?! Then we can all get back to loving everyone's blog and commenting and learning and getting to know each other and all that sunshiny crap :)

Thanks also for your support for my dessert & coffee charity night next week! I think it's definitely going to be fun and I hope I have a good turnout! I live in a big apartment building with 12 floors, so I am inviting everyone in the building and hoping it will be like a "block party" type thing where we can all meet each other (since I don't know too many people in the building). I will keep ya updated on that as well.
  • TNT practice (and thus my first run since Saturday) was stormed out last night due to serious lightning, much to my dismay, so instead I did some planks and some push-ups.
  • I'm on this new push-up kick. Trying to do 50 (girl) push-ups MWF along with abs, hopefully working up to real push ups.
  • Practice was rescheduled for tonight. I have no idea what we're doing (it's a conditioning practice) but it starts a little over a mile from my apartment so I'm going to run there and back.
  • I've got 19 weeks till the marathon and about 50 days until the Wild West Relay...so I better get my rear in gear. Maybe I will go rogue like Miss Alisa, seems to be working out for her!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Dessert & Coffee to Cure Cancer

I completely stole this picture online. But I will be making my mama's blueberry pound cake, never you fear.

What: All-you-can-eat dessert & coffee charity social

Next Thursday, June 25th from 7 to 9 PM

Where: My place! Downtown Charleston (with all the parking you can imagine.)

Why: To raise funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team in Training Program!

I know many of you who read this blog are not in Charleston. But some of you are. And I would love to meet you and take your money. Just kidding! :) But, seriously. I need donations. I'm over $500 but not anywhere near $3,500 yet!

So a few co-workers and I will be baking up some cakes, pies, cookies, etc etc and will be serving them at my (lovely but small) apartment downtown with some coffee (and possibly some Kahlua and whipped cream...any takers?) and socializing!

Feel free to drop by anytime between 7 and 9 PM. If you wanna eat, you gotta donate! Whatever you feel comfortable with donating, I'm not going to put a minimum number. But if I had to, it would be at least $10. It's ALL YOU CAN EAT SWEETS people. And it's not any of my "healthy" desserts either, there will be multiple pounds of butter and white sugar in my kitchen next week. (And peanut butter...just sayin')

I'm obvi not going to put my home address online since I am sure I have at least two stalkers out there, but if you want to come, email me or twitta me!

Can't come? Live in California or Oregon or Florida and wish you could? I will send *sweet* thoughts your way if you click here and donate anyways...love you :)

**Updated to add: Cupcakes have so graciously been donated by Cupcake on King Street!**

Monday, June 15, 2009

Weekend Wrap-Up + Exciting News

Before we left for the mountains Saturday, I got up and ran 3 miles. It was nice. It was easy. Then I did 50 girl push ups. WOA! Have I been sore since then! We got to Flat Rock, NC around 2:30 Saturday afternoon.

Our hotel was super cool back in 1974 when the Brady Bunch stayed there.

The wedding was fab, overlooking the mountains.

The bride was gaawwrgeous.

The reception was lovely. (The bride + groom are now enjoying St. Lucia!)

I drank a lot and had fun with Matt and my co-workers! Sorry, no pics of us :(

We spent Sunday in Hendersonville, NC and ate brunch at a Beatles themed restaurant!

Mean Mr. Mustard Cafe was amaazzing. Matt didn't know the song so I had to play it for him on the way there. Then we heard two different Beatles songs on the radio so I knew it was fate.

Matt got the French Toast Cordon Bleu! I just got some boring eggs and fruit. No fun for picture, but was really good.

Cute S & P shakers.
Perdy flowers.

The town had lots o' apples.
And I got to embrace my hippie side for a day. Life was good!

Exciting News!

So what do you guys think about a Running Bloggers Conference??? @antorias and I have been tweeting about it since Friday, and are furiously brainstorming/planning ways to make this happen! We are thinking early 2010, possibly attached to a race, possibly in Vegas?! But we're open to ideas + suggestions + help + sponsorship (we already have one sponsor on board)!

There are hundreds of us running bloggers out there, so this would be a great way to meet up, maybe run a 'lil, and have some fun!

I think this is the best idea I have come up with in, well, probably forever.

So we need your help. Ideas. Thoughts. Concerns. Whatever! We want to make this happen!

Follow the RunBloggerCon on Twitter!

What would you want to see in the First Annual Running Bloggers Conference? What would make YOU come?

Saturday, June 13, 2009

I love goodies :)

If you haven't added your two cents yet, head over to Thursday's post about what bugs us about blogs. Don't be shy, we're all friends here!
I didn't talk too much about it, but last month I did Bobbi's Simple Life Challenge. Basically, the challenge was to make your life more simple and green by doing things like, making your own coffee vs. buying at Starbucks, running/walking/riding bike/riding public transport to work instead of driving, making your own gifts, NOT going out to eat all month, starting your own gardens, etc. etc.

Since I am poor and already do all of those things (well, except for the getting to work thing. This girl drives) I didn't rack up too many points. But it was fun nonetheless and it was good not going out to eat too much. At the end of the challenge we were given a 'buddy' to send a small gift to, just to say congrats on finishing.

My buddy was Meredith, from Balance for MEre, and it has been great getting to know her through her blog better over the past few weeks. Bonus, she lives in my favorite (home) state, North Carolina. She actually lives pretty close to where I grew up. And, y'all send her some congrats because she recently ran her first 5k!

Thursday, I got Meredith's package and wow, did she do too much!

  • 1 Pecan Pie Larabar
  • $15 gift card to iTunes
  • 5 Odwalla bars
  • 3 all natural fruit leathers (Matt begged for the grape, "Ooo, Fruit Roll Ups!")
  • 1 purse size fold up reusable shopping bag (SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS)
  • 1 bag of Wasabi flavored roasted edamame
No, she didn't send the 'NAM: A Photographic History' book. Apparently Matt considers this some light reading, approp for the coffee table.

I might have eaten two of the fruit leathers as soon as I opened the package...oopsies! Meredith, you can ask my friend Alesha, but I bought your present last weekend at the market downtown...I have been toting it around in my purse since then. As soon as I can get to a post office it's on its way to you!

Hope everyone has a fab Saturday, I am currently on my way to the North Carolina mountains!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Attack of the monkeys!

Thanks for all of the comments on yesterday's post, What bugs YOU about blogs?? Thanks again to LiLu for sparking the debate. (Also, just so you know, my girl is getting a TON of visitors to her site per day, from all over the place, not just DC. It must be the TMI Thursday! She actually was JUST named as the featured blogger on 20 something bloggers! Congrats lady!)

I think we can all agree that we want more blog love between us and our favorite bloggers. It's no fun to comment and comment somewhere and never get a response. I actually felt pretty good yesterday organizing my Google Reader into a folder with just those who communicate with me, whether that is via comments, responses, emails, whatever. That way I can easily read through all of your posts. Love it! (I'm actually trying to figure out how to switch to Wordpress so I can quickly respond to comments via email. If anyone has any tips for me, let me know!)

For almost all of you who asked, short reader feeds are when bloggers shorten their posts when they're in readers (i.e. Google Reader) so to read the rest of the post you have to click through to the site. This doesn't mean I don't read the blog, it just may take me a bit longer :)

I hope I didn't offend anyone with this, but I thought it was interesting, and was definitely something I needed to get off my chest. I freaking LOVE the running blog community, and what I love most is that we are all excruciatingly honest with each other. At least, that's what I'm striving for.

If you haven't commented yet, please head over there and give me your thoughts! I like the conversation we're having :)
I was tagged a while ago by my favorite running blogger with 'tude, Mica. Sorry this has taken so long but GAH I've been so busy not running and all. But it's Friday and I'm feeling lazy so here goes.

Where I blog (most of the time):

We have a pretty small one bedroom apartment, so for right now, our kitchen table doubles as our desk. Unfortunately since Matt is still in school, it's usually pretty messy. I was gonna clean up for the picture, but eh, too much effort. Matt has this horrible habit of hanging up his jeans on the chairs when he changes into shorts. The dining room/office/living room is not your closet baby! He knows I hate this yet he continues doing it. I guess he could do worse things.

What are you wearing right now?


What’s the last thing you read/what are you currently reading?

Runners World Magazine. Marathon Challenge!

Do you nap a lot?

No! I only nap if I'm sick.

Who was the last person you hugged?


What’s your current obsession/addiction?

Hmm. I like this whole blog thing! Also, marathon training and juicing.

(I added this one) What is your dream job?

A travel writer! Seriously, how cool would that be.

What’s for dinner?

Cornish game hens roasting away in the slow cooker.

What was the last thing you bought?

Other than food? Probably a pair of running shorts for $6.99 at TJ Maxx. Score!

What are you listening to right now?

I really want the new Dave Matthews CD. Also that new Black Eyed Peas song is playing in my head. Something about having a good night.

If you could have a superpower, what would it be?

Flying!!! I always have dreams I can fly and wake up sorely disappointed.

What is your favorite kind of weather and why?

I love love love springtime! High 60's with a breeze baby. Of course, the 70s are nice too on the beach.

What time do you usually wake up?

I always try to get up at 5:30 and run. But I usually end up rolling out of bed around 6:30-7 AM wondering why I keep setting my alarm for so early.

What is your most challenging goal right now?

Passing the Series 7 exam. Boo! Maybe this is why I didn't pass the first time....

Favorite pair of shoes you keep going back to over and over again even though you have a zillion others?

I have a pair of black and cream patent BCBG pumps that are my favorite. Unfortunately I have worn them to death and the cobbler tells me he cannot fix them. So, I guess I would say I no longer have a favorite pair. So, maybe my $3 gold Old Navy flips?

Name one thing you can’t live without.

Cell phone. LoveitGottahaveit.

What time is bedtime?

9:30-11:30. I always shoot for earlier but it depends whats on TV :) (Tuesday nights it's always later...REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NJ)

If there was one place you could be right now, where would it be?

Back packing through Europe with my boo. And since it is also Foto Friday, maybe somewhere that looks like this...
Houses of Parliament, London 2005
(When I was a wee one in college who made poor fashion decisions)

Arc de Triumphe, Paris 2006
(My fave photo ever)

Northwest Territory, Australian Outback 2006
(Hmm, I look a 'lil hefty there. But look! I have boobs!)
Uluwatu Temple, Bali, Indonesia 2006
(Getting attacked by a monkey so please excuse the double chin)

Town of Makrigialos on the island Crete in Greece, 2007

The town of Ia on the island Santorini, Greece 2007

Dominican Republic 2008 with my girls LiLu and Mere!

So yeah, I guess I have had a lot of contact with monkeys in my life.

Headed to the mountains tomorrow for yet another wedding. This one should be swank though, it's black tie!

Ran 4.41 last night in...45:09...it sucked! I started out fine but ended up taking a few walk breaks. I need new shoes. My muscles were tight. Ugh, hope it gets better!