Running on Emotions

Morning, morning! Didja all have a great weekend? Mine was quite pleasant!

Yesterday morning’s 11 miler kicked my boo-tay. I seriously didn’t think I would make it through it, and when I saw my subdivision in the distance, I almost broke down and cried in relief.

Let me explain.

My past two long runs have been on the trail, so I decided to take this week’s onto the open road. It was a new route, so I wrote it down on my palm so I wouldn’t get lost!


Unfortunately I started to get pretty sweaty early on and it got wiped off shortly into my run. However, I made with due and just kind of ran the general route. I veered off the path (which increased my mileage by a quarter mile) a little bit, but I got some very pretty pictures along the way. (iPhone pics – sorry for the bad lighting!)


Pretty flowers!



IMG_1178Around 7 miles and BEAT.

Running across my old university’s quad…






Contrary to the norm, the first two miles were the easiest of the entire run! Around mile three, I looked down and saw my Garmin was dead 😦 Ugh. The downside to depending on GPS during runs. Doh! This kind of through off my groove, but I kept on going. However, I probably took about 8 walking breaks in total. I just kept getting stomach cramps and my endurance was completely off. I’m not sure what caused it. I only ran 3 days in addition to the long run last week, so perhaps it’s the shorter mileage?

Anyway, I finally rounded onto the last stretch and was SO proud of myself. I honestly thought at one point that I would have to call Shane and get me.

Not sure of my mileage stats…grr.

Right after my run, I devoured a plum


and rushed to get ready and packed up everything to head to my parents’ house for my mom’s birthday!



Niko loooves going to grandma and grandpa’s house. As soon as we hit the ramp to their house, she FREAKS out. It’s so cute.

Also had a kombucha in tote:



Once we got there, Shane headed over to my brother’s (down the street) and worked on cars for a while. Meanwhile, my mom and I SHOPPED!


It was SUCH a nice day out. Seriously we are SO lucky this year – it’s April and feels like June!



Sorry for catching you with your eyes closed, mom!

We hit up Dick’s (where I got a foam roller! – post, I’m sure, to come soon) and Banana Republic and a couple other places.

We were ordering pizza later, but I was soooo hungry, so I busted out a Clif bar in the car:


When we got back to the house, I unfortunately had some writing to do, but finished up just in time for pizza! Glorious, glorious PIZZA!


Veggie, of course. Had about twice that amount.

And a salad with romaine, strawberries, walnuts, and mushrooms.


I made a dressing out of apple cider vinegar, olive oil, turbinado sugar, Dijon, and salt, and it was stupendous!

Then we busted into the birthday cake I made for my mom!


Chocolate cake with chocolate hazlenut frosting (from Vive le Vegan!)

Shane and I headed home a couple hours later in order to get back at a decent hour since we both have work this morning. But out of all of us, she was the most pooped!


I’ve said this before on the blog, but anytime Niko goes to my parent’s house, she comes back wiped out. Dog park and grandparent’s house in one weekend=tired dog!

How do you remember your routes when you run/walk/bike/skip/hop? Do you always use the same route or do you switch it up a bit?



Good morning!

How was your weekend? Do anything fun or exciting? Are you all on vacation this week, or are you working right up to mid-day Christmas Eve, like me? 😉

This weekend was a great one for me!

Friday was all about getting ready for a Girls’ Night In Secret Santa party I was going to with my bestest of my girlfriends. After work that morning, I had to hurry home to start making my food contribution for the party.

I went with cashew hummus a la Dreena Burton:

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Dippers were chopped peppers and some Dr. Krackers:


And for my dessert, I decided to make Averie’s raw, vegan chocolate chip cookie dough balls!


Except to make it more festive, I turned them into raw, vegan snowballs by rolling half in unsweetened coconut, and half in powdered sugar.

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They were such a hit, along with the hummus! Woo hoo!

Oh, and I forgot to mention, it was an ugly Christmas sweater party 😉



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The night got a wee bit crazy, and there were lots of drinks out of Green cups with peppermint straws:

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Needless to say, I felt like poo on Saturday. But it was worth it. I ended up staying the night at my girl, Kim’s, and then came home in the morning, to rush home for a hair appointment, followed by a stressful day of fighting the crowds at Petco, Borders, Bed Bath and Beyond, and Von Maur.

Afterward, I realized it was almost 5:00, and the only thing I’d eaten all day was a green monster. Woops! I booked it across the street to Chipotle! I had a craving and only their guacamole could quiet the beast:


However, I sadly discovered that they forgot my guac. What a tragedy!


After having a mini-hormone-induced meltdown, I gobbled it down, and then finally got started on doing laundry in my brand new washer and dryer that my husband installed the night before.

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Love, love, love it!!!! It washes and dries clothes SO fast, and doesn’t make loud, scary noises like our last one did!

I ended the night in my robe, and gave myself a facial (which I need to do MUCH more often) with the following favorites:


The purple one is a hand scrub that is just SO decadent. This is the dessert right heah, yo.

Sunday I woke up, and met my friend Heidi at the gym for a kick butt cardio work out, where I did a 3 mile run on the treadmill, 10 minutes on the stair stepper, and then 10 more minutes back on the treadmill for some hill walking and a cool down. And I got my Self Magazine fix in 😉

Then it was all about the to do list! Random fact: I Read somewhere the other day that to-do lists should only have seven items at the most on it, or else, you’ll feel overwhelmed, and disappointed if you don’t accomplish everything on it.

My new thing is to cut and prep all the veggies I’m going to use for dinner for the next couple nights, so I did that:

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Then made a delicious lunch of green beans, spinach salad, and a Dr. Prager’s veggie burger on a piece of ezekiel toast, topped with half of an avocado.


The rest of the afternoon was spent writing and doing more laundry, until it was cutoff time for productivity, and time to start having fun! So I trotted downstairs to play a wee bit of Wii with the husband, followed by some 2-handed Euchre. It was a glorious time. I loooove me some Euchre 😀

At this point, I wasn’t feeling like making a big dinner, so we went with tri-colored cheese tortellini with some kale chips:


IMG_1348 Hit the spot!

So are you all done with Christmas shopping? I pretty much got mine knocked out Saturday, but I still have just a couple more gifts to get. Plus, I lost one of the giftcards I got from Borders, and they’re not exactly being helpful about it, so I’ll need to go get a replacement 😦

I hope you all have a wonderful Monday before Christmas!! See you tomorrow! 

Don’t forget to enter my Vega Bar giveaway! Ends tomorrow!

Fruits and Veggies In, Toxins OUT!

Hey, hey, hey! Happy it’s still the weekend for those who had Thanksgiving off, and happy now it’s the weekend for those who didn’t 😀

I had quite the productive Friday yesterday. After a week full of coughing, hacking, being immobile, and sniffling, in addition to consuming copious amounts of yummy food, and champagne on Thanksgiving, I was definitely ready for a get my bod back in healthy mode. I hadn’t actually sweat (due to a workout, not a fever) since Sunday, and I was just feeling icky and congested with nastiness. Cute, heh?;-)

Naturally, the first step to this remedy is a Green Monster breakfast. Upon waking up, and after chugging some coffee for the first time in a week (coffee and wine, my two loves, repulse me when I’m ill) I threw 1 frozen banana, 2 cups of kale, 1 chopped carrot, 1 scoop of Amazing Grass Amazing Meal Chocolate Powder, and some chocolate Almond Milk, and 1 T of dark chocolate Maranatha’s almond butter into the blender, and whipped up this glorious concoction:


I swear, this combination keeps me FULL for days. Or at least until noon.

Shane had to head out to Chicago to a datacenter to the ball rolling on a project he and his business partner are working on, and he’d be gone all day long, so I decided to make it a productivo day. After whittling down my huge pile o’ laundry, I started to whittle my middle and twerk it out. It was this first workout since Sunday since I was a sweaty beast afterward, and I welcomed it with (sweaty) open arms 😀

I deed:

  • 10 minute warm up on the elliptical
  • Upper body: chest, shoulders, tri’s
    • overhead press
    • lateral raise
    • supine longarm pullover (haven’t done these in a while – helllooo upper triceps burn! 🙂
    • chest press on stability ball
    • triceps dips
    • pushups
  • 30 minutes on elliptical
  • stretch it out

Speaking of stretching it out, I’ll have to either do a post or finally make a fitness tab and show you my go-to stretches that I do after every. single. cardio. workout. By now it’s just habit, but it’s my tried and true post-workout stretching exercises!

After working out, I felt energized and ready to take on the day, so I got started on my first task: preparing for the new LG front-loading washer and dryer. We are changing which room our laundry room will be when they arrive (on Friday EEEP!!!) so I had to clear out that room for the big arrival. Then I kinda got on a kick and just decided to give the basement a good deep cleaning for old time sake.

After all this work, I was haaangry. I knew just what I wanted: a Hugh Jass salad, baby.


You’re looking at the base of the salad rightchyeah – spinach, kale, button mushrooms, tomato, and red, yellow, and orange bell pepper.

Then a crumbled veggie burger, Goddess dressing, goat cheese, and a hummus glob was piled on:


Served up in a medium-sized Pyrex bowl:


Oh yes. Scrumptious it was. Afterward I may or may not have had some juicy delicious pineapple and a couple raw chocolate chip balls.

A little more cleaning was done, and then some indecisive texting back and forth with one of my friends about whether we wanted to brave the crowds or not and finally, we decided to get our crowd-pushing, deal-snatching faces on:


OK, I actually don’t shop like that, so I’m not sure what that face is, but holy pale face! I gave up tanning after my second year in college, and my skin’s been awesome to me since, but I still have to get used to the paleness from time to time.

So, I jumped in my car, and realized Shane wasn’t kidding when he said I needed gas last night. He drove my car home from my parents’ and alerted me that my gas light was on, but he’s “seen the needle lower before.”


Um yeah, husband. Not so much. I think I drove to the gas station on fumes!

I also got my shopping fuel:


and prepared to power through the ultimate Black Friday nightmare: Tarrrggeeetttt (said in scary voice.) I should have taken a picture of the parking lot, although I’m sure you have all seen the crazy town that is Target. Apparently, we’re not really meant for Black Friday crowds, and called it quits after that LOL. I did manage to make it to Fresh Market, and picked up a selection of new and interesting additions to the RAN pantry:





Most exciting score? Chocolate-covered banana chips!!!


Foodgasms R Us. My friend Kristin mentioned these suckers were in the bulk bins there, and I knew I had to get my hands on em. You know what’s super sweet about the Fresh? They have these aisles of bins filled with different trail mixes, veggie chips, fruit chips, nuts, etc… and you can try before you buy! It’s about the best thing ever.

The husband and I had gran plans of going to a hocky game and playing poker with a few other couples, but he didn’t get done with his datacenter…ing until about 8:30, which meant he was home at 11:00, which did not = a night out. Instead, I decided to live on the edge and have a wild night of spice cabinet organizing. Yes, my friends, sometimes you just have to live on the edge.

Before, a cluttered, I-can’t-find-tumeric-I-could-have-swear-I-bought-tumeric mess:


And after, alphabetized, and in rows, so I know I can find tumeric in the T secion:

IMG_2344which will stay like that for approximately one week.

To round out my getting-back-my-health Friday, I did some detoxyfying assisted back bends:


IMG_2353 my slippers? Hmm…apparently I need to work on getting that left arm in closer to the ball. The stability ball is a great tool for the back bend. It’s so beneficial and feels sooo good. If you’re like me, you’re hunched over 90% of the day either at work, over the stove, etc, and a nice back bend stretch and do wonders for stretching out the chest and shoulders.

Finally, I finished off the night with some vino and blog reading:


The blog reading didn’t last very long though. Clarabelle has been in such a needy/lovey-dovey mood with me lately, and fights for my attention and follows me everywhere! Including the computer room. Last night as I was sitting and the computer, she continuously strutted back and forth across the key board, just to get in my way of the computer, letting her huge puffy tail whap me on her way through:

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You try ignoring this tail!



Well I’m off a yoga class (if I can get out of here on time!) and then do some core work and cardio. Today the husband and I are putting up the tree!! I’m SO excited 😀

Do you feel the need to get back to your healthy ways after a bout of sickness or after a couple days of eating way too much?  I typically feel a nice, long sweat session will do the trick!

Have a wonderful Saturday, everybody!!

Sleeping In + Black Friday?

Yes, my friends. It’s doable 😉

Hey everyone! Happy Black Friday! Have you crazies been up since 3:30 a.m.?? :-p Shane and I got an awesome Black Friday deal on a  new frontloading LG washer and dryer! I’ve wanted these for years! Our washer/dryer is getting pretty ghetto. And we didn’t even have to wake up at an insane hour to score them! Thank baby Jesus for online Black Friday deals! And free shipping 😉

And did everyone have a good Thanksgiving? I started my Thanksgiving out yesterday by hitting up the gym with a friend. I’ve been sick the better part of this week, and it was my first time exercising since Sunday. Although I woke up feeling about 80% better than I did Wednesday, my body was not ready for a work out. After 10 minutes on the treadmill, I felt weak, shaky, and headachy. When we switched over to the elliptical and I still felt that way, I bowed out and opted to do some stretching and light ab work while my friend finished her workout. My hard work was definitely rewarded when we hit up Starbuckie’s afterward and got some lattes in their holiday cups! I got the gingerbread latte and it was delicious, however, my friend’s peppermint white mocha smelled even better!

I have to admit, while I wasn’t in tip top shape to be working out just quite yet, the little workout I did get made me feel great afterword, and gave me plenty of energy to get started on cooking for the day’s festivities:

IMG_2315  And that’s me post workout, pre shower and makeup ha..

I baked my booty off! Starting with a vegan pumpkin pie:IMG_2317 IMG_2318

This was the first time I made my own pie crust, and although the crust was a wee bit too thick, it turned out amazing! Lookie:


And I also made some kale chips for the first time:


I was totally surprised when my dad told me he loved these! And then I was even more blown away when my brother said he liked them! He’s like the husband in that he thinks Green Monsters are absolutely disgusting, and before he tried it he said it better not be anything I put in those green monsters! haha. I think I waited until after he tried it to tell him that yes, occasionally kale does go into the green monsters. Muahaha

I also made Autumn Puree and Pumpkin Spice Roasted Chickpeas, but forgot to take pictures.

We took off to my parents’ house around 2:00, and when we got there, we started on the drinks:


My parents’ house is dry, so we stuck to kiddy cocktails. Can’t you tell? 😉 IMG_2326

Actually, that’s a mich ultra in Shane’s hand and a mimosa in mine. Oh, and this is post-shower and makeup. Much bettah 😀

I actually didn’t stuff myself for this meal. I think having two Thanksgivings will do that to you. But this was my plate:


Smashed red potatoes with green onion and sour cream, aforementioned autumn puree and chickpeas, croissant, and some cauliflower. Now that’s a plate full of carbs! It did kind of feel like I was missing out a bit when I didn’t have any ham or turkey, but remembering why I’m not eating it helped a lot. I did end up going back for some cauliflower, and then had a big ol’ piece of pumpkin pie with some vanilla ice cream.


How did your Thanksgiving go? What was your favorite dish this year? How about your least favorite?! – were there any total duds?? haha

Shopping! And a stay at the Parental’s

Hey everyone! I know I re-capped my race this weekend, but I hardly talked about anything else! Well, another good thing about the race was I got to stay at my parents’ house. I hardly ever do this anymore since Shane and I have our own house, but it’s nice to be “home” every once in a while. Niko came too. She loves visiting the grandparents.

I just headed home after I got off work Friday morning, because my mom and I had plans to go get pedicures.

I love, love, love this color! I actually went out and bought the shade yesterday haha. It’s part of OPI’s new line.

Then we hit up our favorite store – Banana Republic. I tried on about 6 things, and sort of liked some of the stuff:

But not enough to buy anything. It’s a rare occurrence that I leave BR empty happened, alas, it happened.

However, Dick’s was the next stop, and I did find a couple items o’ clothing there.

Cute, eh?

After our shopping extravaganza, it was time for cocktail hour at the homefront. My parents are retired, and have a cocktail hour every night consisting of these two beverages:

Naturally, I had to follow suit, and have them myself. They were good, but I was pretty tipsy when finished, so I decided to stop after these two.

We picked up sandwiches from Subway before we got home, so after the cocktails, I dug in to my foot long veggie sub 🙂

It ended up being a quiet, early night since I had the race in the morning.

Even though I was “vacaying” at the parentals house, I still had to blog, of course!

Even after shopping Friday, I still had the shopping bug yesterday. So when I got back to Normal, I took a quick nappy and then got my shop face on again. I hit up Often Running, to get myself some new kicks!

Whoop whoop! Notice these aren’t the same ones I’ve been running in. I love my Asics Nimbus 11’s, but I wanted to try to find some that weren’t $125. Enter the Adidas Supernovas. Hopefully they work out OK. I’m going to wear them on my long run this morning and see how they do.

This morning’s run’s going to be a 7 miler – the longest I’ve run yet! I’m excited for it 😀 I’m not really sure how to prepare for it though. Do I need gummy’s or shot blocks for 7 miles? or is that needed for more miles than that? I know I’ll bring a water bottle, but I guess I’ll just have to hold it in my hand.

I already had my pre-run fuel:

It was actually a little much. It’s been an hour and I can still feel it just sitting in my stomach. Oh well, it’s not like I have to beat the heat today. It’s not even supposed to get above 60º until noon!!

How crazy is this weather we’ve been having lately? Is it already feeling like fall where you live too? I always get so sad when summer ends, so I really don’t want it to end this early 😦

Shoppin’, and Gossip, and Food

Good morning!! Happy Friday! Who’s ready for the weekend? I sure know I am. What a week!

So last night shopping went pretty well with Heidi. She was only able to find a few things she liked in the maternity sections. She’s still not convinced on the styles they offer moms-to-be here in Central IL, so I think a day trip to Chicago is in order soon!

I picked up a few things for myself while we were out too. Retail therapy was in need.

Mostly just casual bumming around shirts, but I think I’m going to wear the fuschia colored one when we go out on Saturday. Oh, and notice the one that says, “exhale?” I’m totally going to try not to let my time constraints stress me out so much, and just breathe and exhale.

I knew we wouldn’t get back from shopping until late, so I snacked on this:

When I got home, I reheated some Terryaki Chicken that I cooked in the crock pot for Shane and myself a la the Fitnessista. Shane liked it, but I think I used too much soy sauce, because it was a bit too salty for my taste.

Instead, I made myself a make-shift veggie pizza.

It was SO good! I just used a whole wheat pita, and then put some tomato sauce on, then goat, mozzarella, and cheddar cheese on top of that. Finally, I topped the cheese with summer squash, tomatoe, yellow pepper, and asparagus. Then I drizzled on some EVOO and popped it in the oven. I will definitely be making this again. Mmmm.

After dinner, I checked my stack of mail, and was elated to find this!

Hooray!! I’m so excited to finally try Amazing Grass. I’m going to use the GREENSuperFood in my Green Monster today, so I’ll let you know how it goes 🙂

A little while later, the hubski and I were both feelin’ some ice cream, so we busted into this:

Ah it was delish! I wasn’t too sure about the passion fruit flavor, but it was sooo good. I love that it only has 5 ingredients, too.

Tomorrow it’s movie night at my house! I’m having a few girlfriends over to watch Confessions of a Shoppaholic (I think.) Plus, I think I’ve convinced them all that we should get Indian beforehand muahaha. If not, a veggie pizza will suffice.

What are your plans for the weekend? Doing anything exciting?