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NYRR Mini 10K

11 Jun

This morning was the annual New York Road Runners Mini 10K.  The Mini started in 1972 marking this year as the 40th year.  It began as a celebration of women’s running; a celebration that continues to this day.

This year’s race was dedicated to Grete Waltz.  Grete was  a nine-time NYC marathon winner and five-time Mini 10K winner.  Just two months ago, she lost a long battle with cancer.

It’s humbling and inspiring to think of Grete and all the strong women runners that have paved the way for the rest of us.  When I was struggling to get to the finish line, I thought of all that they’d accomplished, and it gave me the strength to keep going.

I covered the entire 6.2 mile course in 54 minutes and 3 seconds.  I couldn’t be happier.  It isn’t a personal record, but I know that I gave it my best!  I’m already looking forward to next year’s race 🙂

Have you ever run a road race?  Did you enjoy it?

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Up and at ’em

7 Jun

After a rather busy and productive weekend, I threw myself into this week with the same vigor.  At 6:15 yesterday morning my alarm woke me out of a deep slumber to remind me it was time to workout.  So workout I did.  I went to the gym in our building and pounded out 3.25 miles in about 30 minutes. 

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this yet, but this weekend I’m running a 10K.  It’s been about a year since I ran a race so I’m a little rusty but I couldn’t say no to the NY Mini 10K.  This year will mark the third year I’ve run this race, in just as many years.  It’s a women’s only race which always pumps me up!  And the course is beautiful.  Keep your fingers crossed that we’ll have good weather!

Shortly after getting ready for the day, I whipped up a fantastic breakfast smoothie.

In the mix:

  • 1 scoop chocolate protein powder
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 3 organic frozen strawberries

I’ve been using Wild Harvest organic strawberries for most of my smoothies lately and I have to say I love them!  They are huge so only a few make a big difference and they create the creamiest smoothies!  I need to replenish my stock, pronto.

For lunch, I went with an old classic; a salad.  After weekend of lots of carbs and cheese, fresh veggies were just the thing my body needed.

Today’s salad included:

  • Baby spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Grape tomatoes
  • Egg whites
  • Roasted chicken
  • Fat free honey dijon dressing

And I also munched on a delightful fruit salad. 

I’m so glad summer’s here because I’m so ready for copious amounts of fresh fruit!

One problem with being out of town is that it doesn’t leave me time to grocery shop!  So for yesterday’s snack, I decided to try a free protein bar I got when I joined the gym.  One of the samples they gave me was the Iced Oatmeal Blueberry dotBAR.

The stats are fairly decent albeit a little high in calories, but 15 grams of protein is something I can get behind.  The ingredient list was a little long for my liking but it was free, so why not?

Ordinarily a blueberry flavored protein bar is not something I’d buy myself.  If I eat a bar, I usually opt for the peanut butter chocolate variety.  And after trying this sample, it confirmed that I should stick with what I like.  This flavor was just not good.  It smelled vaguely of blueberries but didn’t taste like much of anything.  I did like the texture as it reminded me of cookie dough but that was about the only good thing.  I will not be buying these for myself.

When I got home for work, I had a very pleasant surprise waiting for me…

… a new refrigerator!  Our last one started making really loud noises so after discussing it with the landlord, she went ahead and bought us a new one.  There are lots of perks to renting 🙂

Dinner was super quick since we were low on pretty much everything.  I made some ground beef tacos with homemade taco seasonings.

For dessert I had a handful of chocolate chips and some warm, cinnamon milk to help me knock me out.  I need all the sleep I can get, haha.

Do you like Mondays or do you tend to have the Monday blues?  I’m usually prone to the blues, but this Monday I felt great after working out.  It looks like there is something to working out in the morning after all!

Dessert for Breakfast

25 May

I started the day off on the right foot; I had dessert for breakfast.

Looks like a brownie sundae, right?  Well, it’s probably the healthiest sundae I’ve ever eaten.  For the “brownie” part, I made a chocolate protein muffin a la Smoothie Girl Eats Too.  This recipe is seriously great.  The “brownie” always comes out moist and chocolatey!  The only change I made was to add a boatload of cinnamon.  I love that stuff.

Now, the “ice cream” part was none other than greek yogurt ice cream.  I mixed 3/4 cup of plain greek yogurt with about 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk and 10 drops of vanilla stevia.  Then, I poured the whole mixture over my “brownie”, dressed it with some fresh organic blueberries, and dug in.  This breakfast sure made for a sweet morning.

On the way into work, Alex and I passed a group of Jamba Juice employees passing out new samples of their natural energy drinks.  I ended up with the Pomegranate Blueberry flavor.  The nutrition facts aren’t too bad as the ingredients appear to be real food.  What I don’t love about the stats is the high sugar content.  Most fruit juices have a large amount of sugar.  I usually don’t drink anything besides water, herbal teas, and the occasional glass of wine for that reason.

But, my curiosity got the best of me and I decided to try it.  In truth, I didn’t really like it.  The first sip wasn’t so bad but by the third or fourth sip all I could taste was the sugar.  The drink had a very strong berry flavor and left a strange aftertaste.  I highly doubt I’ll drink it again, even if it’s another free sample.

Moving right along to lunch.  Today I ordered another salad!

Shocking, I know, but seriously salads are such a great way to eat lots of veggies.  And since I’m going away for a few days, I’m not sure how many veggies I’ll be consuming in the near future.  Today’s salad included:

  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Green peas
  • Red and green bell peppers
  • Grilled chicken
  • Egg whites
  • Low fat tex mex ranch dressing

It was delicious and protein packed 🙂

When snack time rolled around, I had one thing on my mind.  Another protein muffin.

Seriously.  So good.  Have I mentioned that?!

And I also had some fruit salad…

After work I headed to the gym for another Chisel class.  Tonight’s class was taught by a great instructor.  She’s only a sub so I’m never sure when I’ll get to see her but I’m glad I made her class tonight.  She made us work!

For dinner, I knew I needed something protein packed to refuel and it also had to be quick.  So I made pasta with meat sauce.  It’s the easiest thing to make since PB&J.

First up, I chopped up half an onion and sautéed it over medium heat for about five minutes.  Then I added 1lb organic grass-fed beef and cooked it until the beef browned.  After draining the fat, I added about 1 to 2 cups of tomato sauce and cooked it on low until it was heated all the way through.  Meanwhile I prepared some whole wheat pasta and steamed broccoli.  It was ready in less than 20 minutes and it was darn tasty!

Now I’m snacking on a small bowl of Kashi GoLean, almond milk, and blueberries.  I’m heading to bed very soon since we’ve got an extra early wake up call tomorrow!  See you from North Carolina!

Have you ever had dessert for breakfast?

Five Friday Favorites – 5/13/11

13 May

Random is the name of the game today.  I’ve read so many great posts over the past week or so that I complied quite the random listing.  This is just a glimpse of what’s been happening in the blogworld this week.  I’m sure there are many awesome posts that I missed.  If you feel I overlooked something stellar, please share in the comments! 

My five favorites for Friday, May 13, 2011:

  1. Brown Rice Horchata (from skinnytaste.com)
    For those of you who have never heard of horchata, it is a Mexican drink made from rice, milk, cinnamon and sugar.  A few years ago this drink was foreign to me too however, it is one of Alex’s favorites.  He’s always on the look out for horchata when we go to a new Mexican restaurant.  Once I saw this recipe, I knew I had to save it so that I can make him some in our very own kitchen! 
  2. Burpee Blasts (from Getting Healthy with Heather)
    If you thought burpees were hard, think again.  The burpee blast takes this plyometric exercise to the next level.  Heather was brave enough to do 101 at once and she lived to tell the tale.  Phenomenal.  I hope to try these myself sometime however my goal is much more modest.  I’m hoping I can do more than one 🙂 
  3. Weighing In (from Slate)
    This article discusses the importance and ease of using a kitchen scale.  Years ago I would have thought it crazy to weigh my ingredients when baking a simple batch of cookies or a loaf of quick bread.  But as I spend more time in the kitchen, I’ve come to learn that weighing the ingredients can make all the difference between soft, chewy cookies and cookie shaped rocks.  I use the EatSmart Precision Pro Kitchen Scale.  It’s probably the best $25 I’ve ever spent on kitchen supplies.
  4. Spring Abs Workout (from The Fitnessita)
    This is another great fat blasting workout that focuses on the core.  I like that it’s short and sweet but I’m sure highly effective.  It’s another one I plan to try soon!
  5. DIY Decorating with Masking Tape (from How About Orange)
    This last one is so much fun!  I love the simplicity and versatility of each design.  Also, if you’re not happy with your work, you can always take the tape off and start again.  You can change the tape according to the season, your mood, or whatever you like.  Personally, I’m quite partial to the purple tape but that’s just me 🙂

Any big plans for the weekend?  Alex and I are going to keep it pretty low-key for the most part but we do have a meeting with a wedding photographer on Sunday.  I’m looking forward to it.  Wedding planning has been a lot of fun and it’s nice to see each piece of our big day fall into place.  Have a good one!

Ab-solutely!

1 May

Good morning!  How’s everyone doing today?  Have you had a nice weekend so far?  I sure have!  After last weekend’s crazy (but super fun) schedule, it’s been so nice to take it easy and relax.  We’ve also had some awesome weather!  It’s finally in the 60s, sunny, and NOT humid.  I love it!  I have to enjoy it while it lasts 🙂

Yesterday I did manage to get outside for a bit.  I walked over to the gym for a personal training session.

Earlier this week I mentioned that I joined a gym.  About a month ago, I was lucky enough to find a great deal on Living Social.  I bought a one month membership for 60% off!  When I saw that deal, I knew it was a sign that I need to get my butt into gear and amp up my workouts.  Before joining the gym, I’d been using the gym in my apartment building.  That gym has been great for basic cardio and weights but I’ve found it very hard to motivate myself to go often.  So, my plan is to take several classes at the new gym!  That should keep my motivation up and prevent me from slacking off.

At any rate, when I purchased the one month membership, I received a complementary personal training session!  The trainer I met with was very nice and reassured me that I can reach my goals with some hard work and determination.  After talking a bit more about what I want out of my membership, we got to work.

She totally killed my abs with the following moves:

First up, I did leg raises while holding a body bar.  She had me lay flat on my back and hold the bar above my chest.  Then, using my lower abs, I raised my straight legs up towards my left hand, lowered them (without touching the floor), and raised them again towards my right hand.  Repeat for a total of 12 times on each side.

Next up, I did 12 straight leg raises on the captain’s chair.

source

Then, she had me lay flat on a workout bench and hold on with my hands by my head.  I did 12 straight leg raises again.

In the same position on the workout bench, I did another 12 leg raises however this time, at the top of each raise, I tilted my pelvis up so that my butt was lifted off the bench.

Immediately following that set of 12 raises, I held my legs straight out and parallel to the ground.  In that position, I crossed my feet over one another for 12 times.  <– That was the toughest move of the whole workout!

For the last few exercises, I used a Bosu.

source

The trainer had me place my tailbone on the lower portion of the Bosu so that my upper back curved over the top and my feet were flat on the floor.  In this position I did 12 crunches.

Then I quickly flipped over for a one minute plank on the Bosu.

After that, I flipped back onto my back, into the original position to complete 12 crunches, then 12 pulses at the top, and finally 12 more crunches.

Once I’d completed the abs circuit, she had me do some mountain climbers, burpees, sprints, among others.  It was a tough workout and my abs are so sore this morning!  But I’m not complaining, it’s just what I want 🙂

Since this post is so wordy, I’ll save some of my weekend eats for another time.  Until then, enjoy the rest of your weekend!

When was the last time you had a great workout?  Tell me about it!

I know I’ve had a good day when…

10 Apr

…I don’t get out of bed until after 10am.

…I have time to make Ashley’s french toast oats.  Yum!

…the first thing I do after breakfast is bake some amazing muffins.

…I head to the gym with a new workout in mind.

…I find the time to finalize my tax return!  You’re welcome Uncle Sam.

…I spend the afternoon sorting through dozens of bridal brochures and dream about my own big day.

…I have a hot dinner date at Cello Winebar.

…said hot dinner date is this guy.

…my dinner consists of gourmet, cheesy pizza

and a couple other small plates.

Yeah, I had a good day.

Tell me, when do you know you’ve had a good day?

Don’t forget to enter my Chobani giveaway!!

Epic.

6 Apr

That’s the best way to describe yesterday.  Epic.  Thrilling.  Fantastico!

It started out as an overcast and humid day.  Your typical NYC spring weather (eye roll), but at least it means that winters days are numbered.

The gloomy morning was followed by a nine-hour workday.

Trust me, it does get interesting.  Eventually.  Please bear with me.

Because you see the next thing I did was stood in line for three hours.  Yes, you read that right.  Three full hours.  180 minutes.  10,800 precious seconds that I’ll never get back.

What could be worth this amount of time?  What could be worth lugging my heavy, overloaded purse through the aisles of Borders while chatting to a 40-year-old Italian woman about the Urban Girls picture book found in the Gender Studies section?

Do you really want to know?

Well then, I’ll tell ya.

I got to meet… Jillian Michaels!

That’s right folks, the Jillian Michaels was at the Columbus Circle Borders last night for an epic book signing.  (Okay, I’ll stop using that world.)  See, I told you my day got interesting.

Let me just tell you how remarkably sweet she was.  By the time I saw her, she had been signing for three hours and would most likely be there for another two.  Yet she greeted me with open arms and a warm smile.  And she did the exact same thing for the hundreds of other fans who spent their Tuesday night in Borders.

The signing was held to promote her new book, Unlimited which is a about discovering your unlimited potential and making your dreams a reality.  I’m really looking forward to reading it and will share my thoughts once I’m done!  For more information, check out her site.

Check out my other posts about Jillian Michaels here and here!

Have you ever met a celebrity that you admire?