Let’s Make That Workout Happen

Posted on May 28, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Let’s face it: When you’re just out there running for fun, it’s a lot easier to get “bored” with running than if you’re motivated by a race, or weight loss, or have some crazy deal where you get paid per mile you run(If I had a deal like that, I’d be out there all day). The truth is it’s just hard to love a tough workout 100% of the time. Here is how I get workout-ready in my morning.

I always start the day with a big breakfast, workout or not. My perfect trifecta is oatmeal for fiberous carbs, peanut butter(cinnamon raisin swirl PB & Co. here) for healthy fat, and greek yogurt for protein. To be completely honest, I don’t love Greek yogurt here always; a lot of days I’d be happiest with 2 huge bowls of oatmeal and nut butter. But greek yogurt is a great source of probiotics and protein. And starting your day with protein has been shown to boost metabolism and curb you late-night hunger. I can certainly scoop some Fage for that.

When I know I’m about to run, I always steal some chocolate from my stash. Call it a bribe; it’s as natural as putting on my shoes. “Rituals” lie this can keep you on a regular exercising route.

Today, my workout motivation as music. I just downloaded Telephone(I know, I’m terribly behind) and Love On The Inside by Sugarland and made a big playlist out of them. I definitely couldn’t have gone so far without that energy pumping through me. For some, it’s music. Other times, it’s whatever’s on the TV at the gym. And, of course, there’s always the beautiful nature of the outdoors. Whatever it is, distractions can be some of the greatest ways to make a cardio workout enjoyable.

Afterwards, it’s important to hydrate. In fact, I plan this beforehand by sticking water and anything else I might want in the fridge and knowing just where it is to grab it to drink while doing stretches. Without stretches, the next workout might not be as enjoyable…

And, of course, you need to refuel. There was a lot of hype last Summer about chocolate milk being the “perfect drink”. Really, what you need is food. Drinking carbs is certainly one way to get energy back in to your system. That just doesn’t fit me, personally. For myself, I made a “dream salad”(as in, I dreamed this up all run long): Spinach, avocado with lemon juice, sauteed onions, and toasted cashews. If this doesn’t work for you, feel free to go back to the chocolate milk.

And it never hurts to have a little more running motivation. Sundae Friday, anyone?

No matter how difficult it is, there is nothing that tastes better than homemade ice cream. Can you see the vanilla bean specks and thick chunks of organic dark chocolate? Maybe I got hit by a car on my run and went to heaven and don’t know it yet.

Flash forward to 2 hours later when I hadn’t sat down at all and realized it was one of those 2-lunch days.  Now I’m relaxing with oatmeal and cashew butter and a pineapple Chobani. Glorious, no? I’ve been trying to churn up a real good dessert. It’s been a battle so far; we’ll see how it comes out tonight. We’ll see…

How do you stay motivated to work out?

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A Night At The Museum

Posted on May 23, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I like to think I’m not stereotypical “meat and potatoes”, but…

Ground Beef, Potatoes, Olive Oil, Rosemary, Basil, Paprika, And Sea Salt

Ground Beef, Potatoes, Olive Oil, Rosemary, Basil, Paprika, And Sea Salt

My lunch yesterday comprised of meat and potatoes might argue differently. I did not realize what a great flavor paprika was for a smokiness! This whole dish was herby goodness. And it felt good to refuel after my slowish 10 mile-run.

Cantaloupe And Virgil's Root Beer

Cantaloupe And Virgil's Root Beer

We did our grocery shopping in the afternoon; beforehand, I grabbed some things from Whole Food and made it snack time.

Virgil's Root Beer

Virgil's Root Beer

I had a major craving for the real deal root beer, so I gave Virgil’s Root Beer a try because it was among the cheaper varieties and I remembered Mama Pea toting Papa Pea’s love for it here. ‘Twas alright; I don’t think I picked up all the subtle flavors listed as ingredients but it was a fun change of pace.

Chickpea-Raw Mozzarella Salad, Raw Almond Butter

Chickpea-Raw Mozzarella Salad, Raw Almond Butter

Back home I made a quickie-early dinner with a stick of Next Generation Dairy Raw Probiotic Mozarella and part of a can of chickpeas, all over spinach dressed in Foods Alive‘s Sweet & Sassy. Yum! for a sweet dessert, there was an Artisana Almond Butter sample eaten with a spoon. I swear it tasted like marzipan, it was that good.

Boston Skyline

Boston Skyline

Last night, I had a reunion of sorts held in the Museum Of Science’s skyline suite. Love that dirty water, Boston you’re my home.

Mixed Colored Vegetables, Beets And Golden Beets, Almond Encrusted Salmon

Mixed Colored Vegetables, Beets And Golden Beets, Almond Encrusted Salmon

I honestly had no faith in the food that’d be there so I was packing tofu and larabars, but I was pleasantly surprised to see loads of vegetables and wild salmon. I actually only had about 2 bites of the salmon–wasn’t in the mood–but grabbed a 2nd, equal-sized plates of vegetables and put those away too. I definitely run on plant power.

Newman's Own Organics' Super Dark Chocolate

Newman's Own Organics' Super Dark Chocolate

French Bulk Chocolate

French Bulk Chocolate

Dessert after a show was a Newman’s Own Organicssuper dark chocolate bar, and then a little bulk baker’s chocolate at home… times two… plus baby carrots. Have I mentioned I’m an insomniac every Saturday night?! That’s turning in to a frustrating habit…

Oatmeal With Raw Cashew Butter And Honey

Oatmeal With Raw Cashew Butter And Honey

2% Fage With Organic Strawberry Conserves

2% Fage With Organic Strawberry Conserves

Why is Fage so good?! It’s also the most expensive Greek yogurt brand around here, but it’s been on sale, and magically delicious. Take that, Lucky Charms.

What do you buy in bulk? Working with a 3-foot fridge and a tiny room, it was hard to buy anything in bulk all year long. Since coming home, I’ve started buying 5 pound bags of organic potatoes. And now I’ve done the math and discovered that if you buy the gourmet baking chocolate by the pound from Whole Foods, it’s cheaper than buying chocolate bars, so I’m sure I’ll be taking advantage of that from now one.

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It’s Time To Get New Pants

Posted on May 11, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I noticed a funny thing yesterday. My jeans which have always been a bit big are starting to fit better, and the ones that have traditionally fit well seem a bit tight and uncomfortable. Being a guy, my first two thoughts were a) I’ve been shrinking everything in the laundry or b) someone else had them be altered to mess with me. That’s when option c hit me.

It might actually be me who’s growing out of them

My gut response was the typical “healthy living blogger” way of seeing it: I’ll eat out a little less, cut down on the sugars, and things will go back to the way they were. And then I thought about it. What if I didn’t adjust to fit the pants; what if the pants adjusted to fit me?

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

I’m still healthy and eating my superfoods.

Rehydrating

Rehydrating

I’m running faster and further than ever before.

Local Hereford Beef

Local Hereford Beef

And I’m enjoying eating out including brunch at fantastic new places.

In short, why would I want to change any of this? I love this! Underneath clothes, we’re all naked; what does it matter what size they are? Be healthy, but be happy. And if happy leads you to a shopping spree at that incredible French clothing store, Targe, with a buttload of gift cards to get jeans from the 75% off rack, so be it.

Who else is willing to throw out the old and put on the new with me?

Whole Foods' Salad Bar Food

Whole Foods' Salad Bar Food

Not only did I go to Whole Foods last night, I ate out, too. This was my last dinner of Providence, so I was prepared to make it a good one even if I had the ingredients for something much more humble back at my room. I got from the salad bar roasted carrots, potatoes, and onions with paprika, avocado rubbed kale, and golden sesame tofu. All delicious. All making me grow out of my pants. All good.

They didn’t have the coconut almond chip coconut milk ice cream I went all the way to get. Bummer, right? I was pretty let down. That’s when I made a plan and got the regular coconut ice cream and add Tierra Farm‘s almonds.

Coconut Ice Cream With Almonds

Coconut Ice Cream With Almonds

I really liked the bare coconut flavor. This ice cream had just 6 ingredients and 11g of sugar per serving–unreal! It was a little chewy even because of the coconut flakes. It was definitely a good ice cream for anyone who likes to add their own mix-ins.

Aztec Crunch Lulu's Bar And Cashew Butter

Aztec Crunch Lulu's Bar And Cashew Butter

I never got hungry for oatmeal, but I did still want the nut butter and I can always go for chocolate. I was worried whether I’d like Aztec Crunch because I’m not a fan of raw cacao nibs(part of the crunch). But this really blew me away. It was raw, but not bitter. It definitely had a solid crunch. One of the ingredients is said to have magical soothing powers; I’m not sure if it was the chocolate or the ingredient but I was definitely soothed.

Of course, the other side to new pants is the completely metaphorical side: fitting your surroundings to fit how you want to be. As much as I love oatmeal, I’m willing to toss it by the landside if I’m craving something else. And this morning, I had a huge white potato craving.

Maple Salmon, White Potato Home Fries

Maple Salmon, White Potato Home Fries

Home Fries

Home Fries

Home fries, anyone? I think I’m still getting past the shock and awe that I made these and not some restaurant, because they’re so delicious. It was just 1 1/2 white potatoes tossed in a pan for a while with some red onion in EVOO. It would be great with sage or rosemary but I didn’t have any. To make this more of a meal and less of a breakfast, I added flaked salmon with maple syrup and sea salt. Definitely not as good as the home fries; but that’s where the extra maple syrup comes in handy.

And how about this for new pants: I’m moving out tonight =-O

If the pants do not fit, you must acquit

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DIY: Fancy Nut Butters

Posted on May 7, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Health, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If there’s one thing I love, it’s a good, flavorful nut butter. And I will happily fork up the cash for it(don’t assume I haven’t paid $10+ for a single jar). But that’s not always the most wallet friendly way to eat, even if the cost per serving is relatively low. And sometimes the flavors you want just aren’t out there. Or maybe they haven’t arrived at a store near you(Justin, I’m looking at you here). That’s when you need to know to make your own. With that, I’m happy to announce the newest additions to my recipe page: nut butters.

Chocolate Nut Butter

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon nut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon sweetener
  • Vanilla flavoring

In a small dish, combine all ingredients and stir.

Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon liquid sweetener
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

In a small dish, combine all ingredients and stir.

Cookie Dough Cashew Butter

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 1/3 tablespoons cashew butter
  • 1 teaspoon agave
  • 1/2 tablespoon chocolate chips
  • Vanilla flavoring

In a small dish, combine all ingredients and stir.

Vanilla Peanut Butter

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 1/3 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons liquid sweetener
  • Vanilla flavoring

In a small dish, combine all ingredients and stir.

The benefit of all these recipes is that they use pantry-friendly ingredients and require no food processor. Of course, I also have recipes for nut butters that start from scratch. I’ll be sure to add those over the Summer(when my food processor isn’t stashed underneath my bed).

Ginger Green & Black's Chocolate And Dark Chocolate Mint Alter Eco

Ginger Green & Black's Chocolate And Dark Chocolate Mint Alter Eco

Otherwise, I’ve been eating chocolate still. Lots and lots of chocolate. Why choose between Green & Black’s ginger and Alter Eco’s dark chocolate mint when you can have both? Beats me.

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

And oatmeal with the aforementioned vanilla peanut butter. I don’t actually measure out the ingredients–I eyeball it based on how hungry I am. But I wanted to give those for a good starting point. Feel free to change it up to fit your taste!

1/2 Honest Foods Apple Ginger Bar

1/2 Honest Foods Apple Ginger Bar

And 1/2 of an Honest Foods apple ginger bar I found in the fridge when I was feeling snackish. This was SO GOOD heated up in the microwave; it became like the topping to an apple crisp–Yum!

This morning, the plan was to go to the gym first thing. But I wasn’t feeling it. New plan? Make cinnamon raisin almond butter.

Oatmeal With Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter

Oatmeal With Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter

Vanilla Siggi With Organic Raspberry Conserves

Vanilla Siggi With Organic Raspberry Conserves

If you haven’t tried siggi’s, well I can only tell you what you’re missing then. It is so smooth and creamy in texture, and the speckles of vanilla bean = pure love. But none of their flavors are sweet enough for me on their own 😦 Which might be OK if they had a little added fat to make them richer but they don’t. Fruit jam to the rescue(and a little almond butter snuck in their as well).

I hope you whip up some nut butter for your Cookie Friday. I’m sure a shmear of cinnamon raisin almond butter on this cookie would be perfect. Now I really must start my day! Lot’s of paper writing to do I’m actually looking forward to. What, what?

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It’s A Freaky Friday

Posted on April 23, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I was enamored by labels.

Gluten-Free, Vegan Baked Mac N Cheese With Broccoli And Mushrooms And Tempeh Bacon

Gluten-Free, Vegan Baked Mac N Cheese With Broccoli And Mushrooms And Tempeh Bacon

Ordering Garden Grille’s vegan, gluten-free macaroni and cheese, I forgot a few important things: I don’t like macaroni all that much, and a meal without a good amount of fat and protein just do nothing for me. Sure, this was kind of tasty with the vegan cheese. But really I just wanted to gnaw my arm of 5 minutes afterwards because it felt like eating air. Cheesy, vegan air.

So Delicious Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

So Delicious Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

When I got home, I broke into our fridge and went straight for two things: fat and protein. First up was the (frozen) fat from So Delicious vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream. I swear, even if it’s just ice cream, it filled me up 10 times more than macaroni ever would. It’s also sooo much tastier, wouldn’t you think?

Plain Oikos With Organic Raspberry Jam

Plain Oikos With Organic Raspberry Jam

Onto the protein, I had a plain Oikos with organic raspberry jam swirled in to sweeten. Delicious and 100% organic–how fun! Isn’t it funny when the foods that make us feel best and full are the same ones we eat all along?

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Lastly(finally), I finished off the night in my own bed with some oatmeal. I’m not sure why, but I woke up at 2 freezing with the heat high and under covers; somehow among the shuffling I managed to get sick, apparently 😦 It took a long time to finally feel OK and fall back to sleep, so I slept in and decided not to run, at least first thing.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Cashew Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Cashew Butter And Coconut Milk

Pomegranate Chobani With Dried Cranberries, Blueberries, And Dark Chocolate

Pomegranate Chobani With Dried Cranberries, Blueberries, And Dark Chocolate

To make a chocolate nut butter, really you just need cocoa powder, sweetener, and some form of vanilla flavor. I made this with Madhava’s vanilla agave. It was good, but Justin could do better. Since no morning’s complete without fruit and chocolate, I broke a chocolate bar filled with dried blueberries and cranberries over my pomegranate Chobani; it has fruit, so it’s healthy, right?

Tonight I am attending an auction at my old high school. While I’m excited, I am a little wary going into it as my first event where I’ll be avoiding gluten. I’m hoping I’ll be able to just enjoy the night, but I’ll also have a pocket full of larabars or something just in case. And in my absence, I have a post prepared on how to shop and save at *drumroll*… Whole Foods! Yes, I do believe it’s possible, and I’ll tell you how.

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If You Looked In My…

Posted on April 22, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

So Delicious Snickerdoodle Soy Milk Ice Cream

So Delicious Snickerdoodle Soy Milk Ice Cream

If you looked in my freezer, you’d find 8 almost empty pints of ice cream/frozen yogurt/dairy-free desserts and 1/2 a quart of coffee frozen yogurt. A problem? I think so. So really, by eating this So Delicious Snickerdoodle ice cream, I was just doing my part.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter

If you looked in my computer, among other things you’d find a folder of photos from a trip to France I took last March. The smell of hazelnuts always reminds me of France. Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter might not be my favorite of his line but I’m out of the other 2 chocolate flavors and it’s all I have 😦 I’m a pig for them. Oink, Oink.

Divine's Milk Chocolate

Divine's Milk Chocolate

If you looked in my closet, you’d find a small fortune of chocolate. I could (poorly) feed a third world country with it. Divine’s milk chocolate wasn’t the best I’ve ever had, but it was pretty damn good–nice and creamy with a sweet finish. It’s also got a spick and span fair trade ingredient list, which I loved.

If you looked in my room at 10pm, you would have found me out cold. I was exhausted last night and determined to get my 8 hours of sleep in.

Apricot Goji PranaBar

Apricot Goji PranaBar

If you looked in my Apricot Goji Pranabar I devoured this morning before hitting the gym, you’d find no actual goji berries, just goji powder. That much I did not like, but the rest of the bar was really good. I loved the sweet and nuttiness of it, and that it was 75% raw for optimal nutrition. It would be much better named Apricot Cashew, though.

10 Miles In 89:18

10 Miles In 89:18

If you looked in my gym this morning, you’d find no one their but me for the most part. Glorious alone time? Heck yes.

Oatmeal With An Egg And Peanut Butter, Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

Oatmeal With An Egg And Peanut Butter, Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

If you looked in my Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos yogurt this morning, you’d find raw cashew butter mixed in. Why? I am just becoming less and less a fan of fat free greek yogurt. I love it, but it’s not satisfying without a little fat in every bite for me. So I thought I’d add a little in!  Unfortunately, it also tasted like too much like cashes :-/ This is my plea for Greek yogurt companies to make more 2%/full-fat flavors!

If you looked in my trash, you’d find a tub of cream cheese taken from the back of the fridge that smelled like old gym socks. That was why I added cashew butter and not dairy fat to the yogurt.

If you looked at my checkings account right now, you’d find one mysterious withdrawal that I need to make a call about because I did not make it >:-(

Where would I have to look to find your dirty secrets? By the way, I did not watch Food Inc. last night because it wasn’t on like they said it would be! Bummer! Apparently, we Tivoed it at home, so I’ll be able to watch it at my own leisure over the weekend.

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Cheesecake For Breakfast

Posted on April 20, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

I can’t offer you some recipe for oatmeal that will make you think, “Wow! This is so good, it’s almost like cheesecake for breakfast!” Instead I can say, if you want cheesecake for breakfast, have cheesecake at breakfast.

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake

Let the jaws drop. I guess I still am feeling a little defeated from last night, because this morning, nothing was appealing. Oatmeal wouldn’t have done anything for me. And this cheesecake needed to be eaten sometime. All that was a big “Why not?” to me.

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake, Pomegranate Chobani, Cookie Dough Cashew Butter

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake, Pomegranate Chobani, Cookie Dough Cashew Butter

“Oh thank God. He’s got protein in there”. On the side was a pomegranate Chobani and a ball of cookie dough cashew butter. Gotta get those healthy fats in there, too, right 😉 To be honest, I don’t feel guilty in the least. There are times when you crave cheesecake for breakfast and times when you crave oatmeal for dessert. And I know my nutrition overall is good and that this is not a habit. For instance, I craved and ate oatmeal last night before bed.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Coconut Milk

Swap the two around and you have an indulgent night and a back-on-track breakfast. It was definitely one of those times when a big and warm bowl of carbs felt like just the right thing. I love Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter, but not quite as much as the almond or peanut flavors; this one melts too much, I think because it has more palm oil maybe? 😦 And I had to  got to open a new can of coconut milk…

Thai Kitchen Coconut Milk

Thai Kitchen Coconut Milk

But I’m really not loving this brand. It was Thai Kitchen, organic, and on sale. I thought it would be better than store brand, especially when the water and milk separated and I was able to drain that off, but it actually becomes more watery on top of oatmeal :-/ Back to 365 brand, it is!

Gummi Bear Vitamins

Gummi Bear Vitamins

Oh, I’m also eating my multi-vitamins along with breakfast, too. That makes the cheesecake healthy, right? Now the real question is, do you think they’d let me join the cast?

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Hungry Nights And Cookie Dough Mornings

Posted on April 3, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Last night I played Hungry Hungry Hippo. Except there was no board game and I was the hippo.

Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Covered Egg

Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Covered Egg

I was really really excited to try the new Trader Joe’s milk chocolate peanut butter cup. I mean, how could it not be good?!

Soy Yogurt With Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Egg

Soy Yogurt With Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Egg

I diced it up and put it on some So Delicious plain soy yogurt sweetened with alcohol free vanilla NuNaturals. Trader Joe, I feel you took advantage of me. This was not like an all-natural peanut butter egg 😦 The ratio was all off, and I don’t even think that was really peanut butter; it was more like chocolate peanut butter. I think the best all-natural peanut butter egg will be just coating the inside of a plastic egg with chocolate and filling it with peanut butter–done.

Nature's Path MMMaple Pecan Bar

Nature's Path MMMaple Pecan Bar

I was equally really excited to try the 2nd of two bars Nature’s Path sent to me; this one was MMMaple Pecan. This smelled ridiculously good. It had a very “New England” aroma–love it! The flavor was a bit of a let down after that. It wasn’t really sweet, or really salty. It just was. But it also was probably the healthiest of any of the Nature’s Path granola bars I’ve reviewed, so kudos for that. But did that fill me up? Not a chance

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Maple Almond Butter And Maple Butter

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Maple Almond Butter And Maple Butter

If this wasn’t about to fill me up, I was going to retire, pack my food bloggin’ bags, and move to Boca Riton. I made a batch of pumpkin oats topped with Justin’s Maple Almond Butter and a little bit of maple butter with sea salt. Oh God this was good, and filling! It was a little cruel to eat this while watching The Best Thing I Ever Ate: Bacon. I. Love. Bacon. And I love maple bacon, in particular maple tempeh bacon. Two more days of Lent and I’m not giving in!

Raw Cashew Butter

Raw Cashew Butter

This morning I slept in embarrassingly late :-/ The part that bugged me was just not knowing when to run anymore. I decided to eat breakfast first, run later. In the meanwhile, I made raw cashew butter, since I loved Love Raw Foods‘ so much. It was actually one of the easier nut butters I’ve made! I just turned on the food processor for 10 minutes and voila. And what could be better for breakfast than freshly nonroasted nuts?

Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Cashew Butter, Lucuma Yogurt With White Chocolate

Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Cashew Butter, Lucuma Yogurt With White Chocolate

In some plain yogurt I added 365 brand agave and Navitas Naturals‘ Lucuma Powder which made such a nice, malty sweetness, and on top were a few white chocolate chips. In the oatmeal was Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cashew Butter. Yes, you read that right.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cashew Butter

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cashew Butter

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cashew Butter:

  • 1 scoop cashew butter
  • A few, scant drops vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 teaspoon agave

Oh. My. God. If you like cookie dough at all, you must try this. The vanilla entirely makes this dish, but you have to watch out not to overdo it. It’s even better microwaved a little so the chocolate melts in to the cashew butter. Do it! Speaking of doing it, I just need to get out there and run before the day gets away from me. We have big plans for dinner; let’s just say the cashew butter was just a prelude 😉

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Race For The Border Half Marathon Recap

Posted on March 28, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Race Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In short, I survived! And with all my toes and fingers, too 😉

Vanilla Soy Yogurt With Mini PB Cups

Vanilla Soy Yogurt With Mini PB Cups

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Maple Cashew Butter, And Maple Butter

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Maple Cashew Butter, And Maple Butter

The night before was filled with carbs, of course. I meant of went a little overboard with the maple-flavored goods, but how could someone not? I love the duo of mighty maple and maple cashew butter with some New Hampshire maple butter. Mmmm. I also had a reunion with the Food Network; after 4 weeks of 20 channels, being at home with my DVR was heavenly until I had to get a good night’s sleep for the race.

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts, Pomegranate Yogurt With Organic Dark Chocolate

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts, Pomegranate Yogurt With Organic Dark Chocolate

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts

The run itself started by the New Hampshire/Maine coast border, which was a good 90 minutes away. We left bright and early and I had a breakfast to eat in the car. I mist have been nervous because I didn’t even want oatmeal; I needed something with some crunch! I smothered a Nature’s Path peanut butter energy bar with butter toffee peanut butter and roasted peanuts. Holy peanut power, Batman. That’s fuel! And of course there was plenty of anti-oxidant rich organic dark chocolate on a pomegranate Chobani.

Waiting To Start

Waiting To Start

If there’s one thing you can’t control, it’s the weather in New England. Today, it was below 40 with a strong coastal wind, too. In line for the bathroom, the man behind me said I was “brave” for just having basketball shorts on. I didn’t want to admit it to him but I don’t own running tights and my shoes have been the same pair since July. Whoops!

Organic Jolly Beans

Organic Jolly Beans

My pre-run fuel was some of these runner’s magic bites. I also had about another 1/2 a handful while waiting to start. If you’re going to boredom eat jelly beans, it might as well be right before a big run, right?

Race Recap

So we’re all on the same page, this was my longest outdoor run yet. My previous outdoor distance PR was 11.25. On the treadmill, I’ve ran 17 miles, and had a half-marathon time record of 1:46:28. That was all the past. My goal for this was sub 1:40.

Miles 1-3: I started off with “the runner’s high” and was really enjoying myself, listening to country music and practically dancing along. I passed a lot of people in this time, and it felt great to be going so fast. I also decided not to look at my pace ever; my time goal seemed lofty, and like if I pushed for it I’d burn out.

Miles 3-5: I really enjoyed the scenery. We were on the New Hampshire Hampton coast, so there was plenty to look at. I couldn’t imagine how many millions of dollars those houses were worth. This was also difficult because the entire run practically was against the wind.

Miles 6-9:

Miles 10-11: My left leg first started hurting around here. At 11.5, I could feel soreness in both of my legs. I started to think about it, and it made a lot of sense; why wouldn’t my legs hurt then when it’s the farthest on terrain they’ve ever run?

Miles 12-13.1: I kicked it in gear, gave it what I had left, and pushed for a good time. The endline was confusing, cars were driving in between me and the finish line, and it wasn’t even really made clear where that was :-/ That sour not aside, I tried to finish with a smile.

After The Finish Line

After The Finish Line

Alright, really I was thinking “Can we get in the car and turn on the heat?!” I still haven’t gotten an “official” time, but here’s what my Garmin had:

Garmin Stats

Garmin Stats

Whoopee! It wasn’t the 1:3X I was hoping for, but I couldn’t complain with the winds being what they were. That was still a huge distance and time PR, and in some of the worse conditions. I’m very happy with all of that… for now.

Lemon Pie Larabar

Lemon Pie Larabar

I did make one very big rookie mistake. I overlooked the time when I’d need to refuel. I did not realize that this half-marathon was 90 minutes away in virtually a black hole. The only restaurants we could find clearly did not have ethical meat or even vegetarian options besides pasta, which would not work when avoiding gluten. And so I had a lemon pie Larabar to hold me over until we got back to my hometown. It gave me plenty of time to think about how much better I could be at refueling. We all need to learn our lessons somehow, right?

Chipotle Menu

Chipotle Menu

Near home,w e stopped at Chipotle, which I heard was very eco-friendly after watching the CEO on Oprah. It may be eco-friendly, but I thought the options were really limited. No brown rice? What’s up with that? They didn’t even have fresh tomatoes… I just got what I could and then added more when we got home.

Black Bean And Sweet Potato Mexican Salad

Black Bean And Sweet Potato Mexican Salad

On top of lettuce was all the black beans/salsa/peppers from my burrito bowl, 1/2 a sweet potato I microwaved with salsa, and the leftover black beans from last night with a dollop of Chipotle’s guacamole. My mouth was on fire after this! Even if their options aren’t great, at least what Chipotle does have is pretty tasty. And at this point, I think we were all pretty hungry, so there was no judging shoveling Mexican food into our mouths while standing up.

Sweet Potato And Salt

Sweet Potato And Salt

After a much needed hot shower, no one wanted this sweet potato, so I’ll take it! When these are nice and soft, they’re pretty much candy to me. They taste a lot better roasted but who has 90 minutes to think about how their sweet potato will taste?

Ginger Root Beer Zevia

Ginger Root Beer Zevia

And since I’ve been writing this, I chugged my favorite flavor of Zevia. I don’t know why I didn’t think about this earlier. All in all, my first race was an excellent experience, and there will be more 🙂 I just need time to recoup while the weather realizes how hot it should be in March, almost April.

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Jars, New Products, And Raw Desserts

Posted on March 27, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I hope you’re all liking the wellness giveaway! You have until March 31st to enter.

Tazo Rest

Tazo Rest

One Lucky Duck Raw Chocolate Chip Cookies

One Lucky Duck Raw Chocolate Chip Cookies

I was not terribly hungry for dessert last night while watching Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution. Did the chicken scene just make anyone else want to give up on meat? I couldn’t go that far, probably, but it makes me feel good that the meat I choose is wild, natural, or organic and minimally processed.

I must have been affected by a British accent because I snacked on “tea and cookies”, with Tazo Rest and One Lucky Duck‘s chocolate chip raw cookies. This was the last sample from One Lucky Duck I had and it did not disappoint. I liked how–very easily–there was a flavor distinction between the cookie and the chocolate, which isn’t easy to do at all with raw foods. It also didn’t have that raw, fall-apart-in-your-hand texture but wasn’t stale. They’re a bit pricey but a good treat for a raw foodist.

Almost Empty Nut Butter Jars

Almost Empty Nut Butter Jars

I couldn’t help but noticing not one but 2 of my nut butter jars were on their last leg. And since I had just had a chocolate chip cookie made mostly out of cashews, this couldn’t have been a more perfect pairing 🙂

Oats With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter And Raw Cashew Butter

Oats With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter And Raw Cashew Butter

On top was the very last of P.B.Loco’s cookie dough peanut butter and Love Raw Food’s cashew butter. There was definitely more nut butter than oats so this was delicious and rich. And I love just being able to toss the jar out when you’re done 🙂 Is it just me, or is it still impossible to get the jar satisfactory empty no matter how much you work at it?

Chia Moon Drop

Chia Moon Drop

I woke up at 5, and took an awful long time getting back to bed(hence not waking up again until 9, yikes!) :-/ Sometime then, I got snackish and went for Uli Mana‘s chocolate chia moon drop. It was a good choice. I think I got through half of it before even realizing where the chia were; that was a good thing since they still sort of freak me out. It was nice and chocolaty, too. I wish it were richer(maybe add some cacao butter?), but it was still pretty great.

Honest Foods Pomegranate Walnut Crisp Granola Plank

Honest Foods Pomegranate Walnut Crisp Granola Plank

I woke up at 8, put on my glasses, and then woke up again at 9. Oops. Don’t you hate when that happens? After deciding what was for breakfast, I grabbed a new Honest Foods granola plank to try out.

Pineapple Chobani With Pomegranate Walnut Granola, Pumpkin Oats With Walnut Butter In A Mighty Maple Jar

Pineapple Chobani With Pomegranate Walnut Granola, Pumpkin Oats With Walnut Butter In A Mighty Maple Jar

Pineapple Chobani With Pomegranate Walnut Granola, Pumpkin Oats With Walnut Butter In A Mighty Maple Jar

Pineapple Chobani With Pomegranate Walnut Granola, Pumpkin Oats With Walnut Butter In A Mighty Maple Jar

Another almost empty nut butter jar? I spoil myself 🙂 In the Mighty Maple jar went pumpkin oatmeal and a scoop of walnut butter; the pumpkin, peanut, walnut, and maple all work so well together! And I had a pineapple Chobani with about 1/3 of the Honest Foods granola plank. I like the ideas of the grab-n-go granola, but the pomegranate flavor in the pomegranate walnut crisp was just not there. It also wasn’t very crisp? It was much more chewy and soft. All the walnuts and peanuts made me happy, though, so clearly I wasn’t complaining much.

I’m sure you’ve noticed Cancun 2010 is no where in my Spring Break plans, haha. In case you were wondering, today I’m heading home to see my dog for the first time in 4 weeks. It’s felt like forever! Tomorrow, I have my 1/2 marathon to run along the New Hampshire coast–not looking forward to the weather. And then Monday is the day I become one really old teenager. We won’t celebrate until Easter with the relatives, though(OK, there’ll be a little celebrating ;-)).

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