One for the Books

Nothin’ like a cold breakfast bowl on a hot summer morning:




OK…so I’m going to pull out the “summer morning/afternoon/evening” as long as I can.

Morning rainclouds stole my lighting:(


Overnight oats – 1/3 c. oats, 1 T. chia, 1 t. maca powder, sea salt + stevia, 1/2 scoop Jay Robb, 1/4 c. plain oikos, 1/2 c. of milk – went into the fridge and chilled over night. This morning, I added another 1/2 c. of milk, a handful of Kashi, and some puffed millet. I like when there’s extra milk. This way is also a lot like Gina’s breakfast cookie dough cereal, which looks delicious as well 🙂

Sidenote: I had all intentions of eating this after a hot morning run this morning – I know! I even woke up on with just enough time to strap on my Garmin and head out doors for a 35 minute tempo run. Except I woke up, started the coffee, and then realized it was POURING. So, the run will wait until tonight after my client I s’pose.

August is still most definitely full fledge summer season in my opinion. But for some reason when the month changes from August to September, all of the sudden, it’s really happening: fall is coming. Another year goes by that I don’t somehow find a magic power to make the next month May. Not that September is a bad month – I got married in September…but not in Illinois 😉


There’s something magical about walking outside no matter what you’re wearing (albeit wearing clothes) and not worry about the temperature.



And about the abundant and bountiful produce




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Don’t get me wrong, I love fall. Love, love, love. I love all one week of it 😉 At least here in Central Illinois, it seems fall lasts about that long – a week. And then…there’s six months of cold.

This year, instead of hanging on the every last string of summer and wrinkling my nose at the premature Halloween decorations flooding the stores, I’m going to take a moment to celebrate this summer.

It was one for the books…

I ran my first half marathon

I quit my full time desk job

And experienced three weeks of pure bliss

Then I went back to my desk job, but with the amount of working hours cut in half

Drank lots of wine

I fell out of the race loop

But my love of running didn’t waver…and eventually the race bug bit me

Celebrated a year of blogging

And Watched my best friend marry the man of her dreams

Helped my husband quit smoking (still smoke free!!)

Welcomed my best friend home from Afghanistan

Won First Place in my summer league volleyball

Posted my first vlog

And created lots of yummy recipes

Helped make my friends birthday a surprise hit

And went on several cute out door dates with the husband

Went to Healthy Living Summit!


You notice I didn’t take any outrageous summer vacations or really even a summer trip, but it was how I felt internally that made it so blissful! This summer I learned how to slow down and savor life and just keep a positive attitude in general.

Oh, Summer, it was a fun one, and I’ll see you next year.

And technically, there’s still 23 days left of summer 😉

What is your best memory from this summer? What made it special for you?


Firsts Workout

Heya Heya!

Whoa. Is it really the 24th day of August? Today was the first day of class for ISU here in Normal…made me reminisce back to my first day at ISU! I was so nervous!!

Although it’s the end of the summer (ouch, it hurts just saying it!) I had my first real summer pie on Sunday:




Strawberry rhubarb. You heard me; strawberry and rhubarb pie.




So I didn’t bake it myself, but Fresh Market did a damn good job of it for me.

With ice cream!




Growing up, my mom would always make a strawberry/rhubarb mush in the summer. All it was was frozen strawberries, fresh rhubarb, and sugar. And it was amazing:)

One of my clients is experiencing a first of her own as well…her first solo workout sesh at the gym! I’ve been working with her for four months now, and she’s finally confident to go in on her own and complete a workout – I’m so proud 😀 I wanted to have her get in a good mix of cardio + weights, so I drafted up the following workout.

This workout is sure to FLY by. It involves both cardio and strength training and is a complete boredom buster!

Total time: 1 hour


Minutes Incline Speed
1-5 1% 3.5
5-8 5% 4.0
8-10 8% 3.9
10-13 10% 3.9
13-15 4% 3.9

[switch to]


Minutes Incline Resistance
1-3 5 8
3-8 8 10
8-10 10 15
10-15 5 8




Stability ball squats 10 lb. dumbbells 12 reps
Arnold press 10 lb. dumbbells 10 reps

[repeat 2 x’s]


Bent over barbell row 40 lb. barbell 10 reps
Pushup [modified w/ smith bar] body weight 10 reps

[Repeat 2 x’s]


Deadlifts Olympic bar 10 reps
Planks body weight 90 seconds

[repeat 2 x’s]


Enjoy 😀 If you try out this workout, let me know how it goes! Let me know if you have any questions, and as always, seek the advice of your doctor before starting any exercise program.

Coming up this week in Fitness at RAN

  • How I create training plans for upcoming races
  • I’ll post the details of my next Friday Fun Run – it will capture how to utilize the last lovely days of summer while getting in a heart pumping and fresh workout.

Well I’m off to go do today! It’s going to be a marathoner – all day at the BIC, then a night full of clients (including a new one! 😀 )

How do you fit strength training in your workout routine? Since I’m all about running in the summer/fall, I aim for full body strength training twice a week, usually on its own or along with some lighter/easier cardio or run.

What’s your favorite summer pie? You knew I was going to ask this 😉 I’m going with rhubarb!

Yesterday I Lied

How is it already August? Every year on August 1st, a little piece of my dies inside. August means it’s the last month of summer (well, you know what I mean.) Call me crazy, but I’d be one satisfied sista if summer were the only season of the year. Why I live in Illinois still we’ll never know…


So. I’m extremely tired today but can’t seem to nap. You see, yesterday I lied.

I didn’t train clients.

I didn’t shop.

But the means justified the end…of keeping the surprise party a secret!



Kim and her fiancé Jason, Shane and myself all drove to Chicago to surprise the heck out of our best friend, Destiny. It was so difficult talking to her on the phone! I felt pretty bad for keeping the convo short – on her birthday – for fear of letting it slip.


It was worth it 😉

On the drive up, I packed a salad w/ romaine, chopped tomatoes, a hardboiled egg, feta, and balsamic vinegar:


Shane and I got there a little early, so we hit up Trader Joes (!!!) and had a dance party in a random church parking lot before the big surprise

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Totally necessary.

Then it was surprise time!




A couple hours later, we were walking to a cute little beer garden and restaurant called Fat Duck.



Errr DuckFat, rather. Not an appetizing name if you ask me, but it did have appetizing food!

We started with a round of drinks. I had a ginger basil mojito.

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It was good, but I’m pretty sure they forgot the ginger and basil :-/

And I ordered a vegetable wrap for…2nd lunch?


Those sweet potato fries were outstanding!

IMG_0166Look at the flaked sea salt! Love 🙂

After lunch, and a couple hours of catchin’ up there were more surprises! We all headed over the the real party, where Destiny was greeted by all her family and friends!


Plus she got to see her mom’s new weiner dog that I was thisclose to putting in my purse and making a run for it:


All at once now…awwwww 😀

She was very much genuinely surprised.

At the party, I had a few wine spritzers (wine + club soda)




I also had a mozzarella and tomato skewer which was phenomenal!

At this point, I was getting pretty tired, but it was a birthday and the show must go on! Of course, we had to say “prune” for the camera:


Evidenced by the look on Jason’s face in the pictures, our significant others definitely think we’re quite odd. Well, we are.

A little later, the game plan changed and we hit up a couple local pubs where dancing the night away ensued.

Another half a wrap may or may not have been consumed before hitting the sheets 🙂

Shane and I headed back to town pretty early today. I think I fail at being a good wife because I fell asleep the minute we started driving home only to wake up 2.5 hrs later when we were turning onto our street back in Normal. Shane said it was the longest drive of his life. Doh!

Back home, I made an energizing juice using 1 beet + 2 carrots + 1 apple:


And then finished it off with an oat bran waffle. Whole wheat flour trumps oat bran flour when it comes to waffles, guys.


Topping ingredients:





I’ve been trying to muster up some motivation to make today a work day since yesterday was all fun, but productivity has yet to rear its head.

But I’m off to keep on trying 😀 Perhaps a nap will help… 😉

How was your guys’ weekends?! Do anything fun? Get any relaxation in?

Well I should probably go make myself somewhat presentable. My parents watched Niko for the night while we were gone and are bringing her back in here in a few, and we’re planning on going out for Mexican food while they’re here. Actually, I think I’ll try to convince them that pizza is definitely a better choice today. A thin, crispy, sourdough veggie pizza. Yes, please!


PS – How do you like my new header? It’s the first time I’ve changed it in…ever! 😀


…and enjoy the moment.

I love, love, love summer. If I had my way, it’d be summer all year long. Unfortunately living in Central IL, that’s just not a possibility. I especially love summer in the middle of February when my car door is frozen shut and I can’t begin to try to unfreeze it because I’ll slip on a patch of ice in the drive way (ew!!)

It just passes by way too quickly. I feel like if I make myself stop what I’m doing, and take a mental photograph, I won’t feel as bad in the winter.

I’m such a summer lover, that I think the hubski gets tired of hearing me take a deep breath and say “I love summer!” But I do. Let me count the ways…

Today, I made myself STOP, and take a moment to appreciate:

the flowers I planted in early June that are all abloom.

The hydrangea I planted in early June, that’s just now sprouting a new bloom!

The fresh cut grass, that my husband just finished tending to:

Niko, so eager to go on a nice long walk on a warm, breezy, summer evening:

The huge blue sky that we walked beneath:

But the thing I appreciate most about the summer, is something I couldn’t take a picture of. I LOVE summer air, especially during the evening, when you can go outside with short sleeves and shorts, and not be too hot, nor too cold. Ahh I love it.

Because I love it so much, I’m going to try to get outside every night for the rest of the summer. No matter if it’s a nice long walk with Niko or just for a couple minutes to water the flowers.

What do YOU love most about summer?