ABCs, Part 3…last one, I promise :)

R is for random fact about me:  Um…this one is hard to narrow down…so I will give you random fact(s):

  1. My eyesight is awful and falls in the 2nd standard deviation a bell curve of “normal people”
  2. I have movie narcolepsy.  True story.  I call asleep within the first 10-20 minutes of movies.  Every time.
  3. I wake up at 4:30am 4-5 days a week to squeeze in a workout…crazy, I know.
  4. My ears turn red (almost purple) when I’m really mad.  It’s really attractive

S is for favorite healthy snack:  I have to choose only ONE?!  Well, savory snacks include: peanut butter, almonds (roasted, raw, or flavor-roasted), or white cheddar rice cakes.  Sweet snacks include: homemade granola (awesome recipes here), grapes, apples, or bananas.  Yum!

T is for favorite treat:  Dark chocolate…no wait…ice cream!…no wait…I’m sorry, but I just can’t choose between the two.  And you shouldn’t make me!

U is for something that makes me unique:  I may need my friends to help me out here…I have some mad Facebook creeping skills…I can’t share the skills or how I do it…that’s how good I am.  Creepy, I know.

V is for favorite vegetable: I really don’t think I can choose my favorite veggie…On a daily basis I eat the following: spinach (2-3 times), carrots, broccoli, celery, and cucumbers.  I love them all for the many different ways they can be prepared…but there’s nothing better than roasted carrots.  Carrots win.

W is for today’s workout:  A 1-hr “circuit” bike ride which left me crazy sweaty!  After that I did some mountain climbers, planks-galore!, and other core exercises.  Next week I’ll start 5K training and circuit training to increase my race speeds!  So excited!

X is for x-rays you’ve had:  Oh my goodness…SO many…I’m embarrassed to include them all.  But here are the body parts that have been x-rayed & MRI’ed:  Wrist, middle finger (that ended up broken…HA!), thumb (also broken…thank you, Rome!), spine/lumbar, spine/neck (fractured C7), hands (for arthritis…yay getting old), knee, feet (stress fracture and 2 surgeries to correct formality issues).  My poor body just can’t handle my life.

Y is for yesterday’s highlight:  Coming HOME!! And sitting in to hear two fabulous colleagues’ presentation about implementing a service-leadership model.  It really left me recharged and re-motivated to keep going!  Conferences always do that to me – they remind me why I do what I do.

Z is for time zone:  GMT minus 5 hours.  I had a “big dummy” moment during my drive to Louisville last Saturday and realized they were 1 hour ahead, which I OBVIOUSLY hadn’t factored into my departure/arrival time.  Since I HAD to be there by 5pm (Louisville time), I left at 12pm (St. Louis time) to give me plenty of time before my awards ceremony.  Fail.  I arrived 15 minutes late.  Fortunately, everyone was busy mingling and I was technically “on time” when the event started.  WHEW!

 

 

Advertisements

ABCs, Part 2

I is for something important:  Currently working on taking time for myself.  My new mantra/favorite quote:  “You have to decide what your priorities are and have the courage – pleasantly, smilingly, non-apologetically – to say no to the other things.  And the way to do that is to have a bigger ‘yes’ inside.” (Stephen Covey)

J is for favorite jam – Sugar free black raspberry…oh…not that kind of jam…right…

K is for kids – Undecided.  I like my friends’ kids, don’t like strangers’ kids (not ALL of them, though).  Not sure if I want my own or if it’s even my purpose in life.  For now, my race bibs/medals are my children.  And I’d say it’s fair enough to call them that!

L is for current location:  Edwardsville, IL, aka “home”.  My conference roomie (friend/colleague) were commenting last night that we felt like we’d been gone for about a month.  Granted, we’d both had service/leadership trips to New Orleans this month…but I am home indefinitely and I couldn’t be happier.

M is for recent way you’ve spent money:  On groceries…nearly $50 for veggies, fruit, whole wheat bread, Greek yogurt, salmon in a bag (sounds appetizing, eh?), salad dressing, and a doggie toy.  Sheesh.  Future plans for my money? A road bike. So I can start training for Duathlons NOT on a Huffy mountain bike…HA!

N is for something you need:  More time in my day…more materialistically? Hmm…More running clothes.  Yes, definitely a “need” 🙂

O is for occupation:  Student affairs professional.  Look it up.  I’m sure only 2% of America knows what this is/does…and that 2% are those that work in the field.  I love it, but it makes me so tired.

P is for pet peeve: Ignorance, rude people, selfish people, drunk people, inconsiderate people, and close-minded people.  And crowds.  Is anyone else seeing a pattern here…?  Maybe my pet peeve is just “people” in general.  Oh dear…Ok, on a more positive spin, I can’t stand when people don’t pull seals off of food containers all the way, like peanut butter jars.  GAH!

Q is for quote:  These two guide me everyday when I begin to question why I do things:  “Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. (Helen Keller)” and:

“Nothing is more practical than finding God,
that is, than falling in love
in a quite absolute, final way.
What you are in love with,
what seizes your imagination,
will affect everything.
It will decide what will get you
out of bed in the morning,
what you will do with your evenings,
how you spend your weekends,
what you read, who you know,
what breaks your heart,
and what amazes you with joy and gratitude.
Fall in love; stay in love,
and it will decide everything.” – Fr. Pedro Arrupe, SJ

I love the second quote especially because it’s NOT about “looooove”, but about loving what you do and loving what you STAND for.  It DOES and WILL affect everything.  Choose wisely and stick to your guns.

R – Z for tomorrow…stay tuned!

ABCs Part 1

The Alphabet of Yours Truly…

A is for age: 26, going on 36.  Story of my life…I look 10 years younger than my actual age, but my maturity/responsibility level is 10 years older than my actual age.  Remember my first post about being a walking contradiction?  Yeah…

B is for breakfast:  My favorite meal.  I could eat breakfast at every meal.  One of the major downsides of being at work over lunch…my favorite breakfast foods are too difficult to prepare or just aren’t the same “made ahead”.  I have been frequently known to bring oatmeal for lunch though.  YUM!  My breakfast this morning consisted of 2 bites of a Cashew Cookie Larabar (I was STARVING after my first “regular” morning workout since my race…my legs feel semi-normal again), Panera’s steal cut oatmeal w/strawberries & pecans, and half of a multi-grain bagel.  My ideal breakfast consists of a peanut butter/chocolate/banana/protein smoothie, 1 egg, 2 pieces of whole grain toast, AND coffee.  I’m currently in Louisville for a conference and I’m DYING to get back to my food routine, particularly breakfast.

C is for circuit & cross training:  A new focus in my workout routines.  I wanted to wait until after my race to hit circuit training hard.  Super pumped for some intense fat burning sessions.  I’m pretty convinced having a heavier focus on circuit and cross training is what helped me become a MUCH stronger runner in this last race.  I only ran 2 times each week but focused heavily on strength training and equal amounts of circuit & cross training vs. “empty miles”.

D is for dinner (even though I say supper): Tonight I was extra bad and enjoyed a Smashburger “Blue Grass Burger” with Smashfries, but my go-to dinner options revolve around grilled or baked chicken, veggies (preferably NOT the frozen/steamed kind), whole grain pasta/brown rice, beans, or a healthy pizza/pasta dish.  Again, can you tell I’m so ready to be home ad enjoying a normal/healthy meal routine?

E is for favorite type of exercise: Um, duh.  Running.  But since I’ve had to really suppress my running appetite lately, I focus on biking, cross-training, circuit training, weight training, and hot yoga (recent favorite).

F is for irrational (aka rational to me) fear: Snakes.  I really can’t talk about this fear without experiencing a small amount of anxiety, so I won’t.  Tornadoes are also on the list…but a distant 2nd.  Actually, I’m not sure if I fear tornado sirens or tornadoes…

G is for gross food: Shrimp.  OMG. I’ve tried and tried to like this food and I can’t.  No matter how it’s prepared, I hate the taste AND texture.  It “bounces”  back when I bite into it.  No thanks!

H is for hometown: Alton, IL.  I lived in St. Louis for 4 years during college and now live in Edwardsville, IL.  I’ve only lived 30-45 minutes from home and it’s been enough change for me.

I through Z coming soon…I thought it would be wise/considerate to break this post up a bit.

PR!!

Before I talk about how last week was the WORST example of race week prep, let me say that my half-marathon went GREAT!  2:09:22! That’s a PR!!!  I consistently ran 9:35 miles until Mile 8.  This is HUGE since I didn’t hold consistent runs above 10:30 miles on the treadmill (oh, the treadmill).  Not only is it huge because of my consistent pace, but that’s super fast for me!  And super slow for many others.  Oh well.  I was feeling AWESOME until mile 7.5 (ish) when we crossed the bridge (over the Mississippi…very long bridge) that was one of the highest climbs in the course.  I won’t say I hit “the wall”, but I could feel my body switch from a comfortable aerobic pace to an unpleasant anaerobic pace.  My whole body feels strange and anxious and the “I need to quit” thoughts start.  Not fun.  I was SO close to walking after we had to climb the levee at Mile 10.  Seriously. SO CLOSE.  But my extra “push” really helped:

Thanks for the push, Pops!

 

My dad was supposed to be at this race, but he landed himself back in the hospital after only 3 weeks at home.  His birthday is March 3, 1933.  This was my way of bringing him with me. PLUS (huge plus), when I felt too tired to keep going and when my whole body hurt so bad, I thought “I may feel tired and be in pain, but he’s much more tired and in much more pain.  Shut up, keep going.”  It really helped.  I also kept reciting the end of a quote I found on Pinterest: “Courage.  Everyone suffers.  Keep going.”

And guess what else?!  NO FOOT PAIN.  During or after.  NONE!  WOOOOO!

Notice those goosebumps in the picture?  We stopped by a Subway after the race.  I was “crazay” sweaty and the AC at Subway was cranked up HIGH.  My leg muscles were already quivering and the rest of my body followed suit.  Fun.  It’s so weird/neat to see how the body responds to your demands during races (and post-race) and how your brain works to protect you psychologically (constant ebbs & flows of mental pushing and mental “it’s ok, just chill out”).

Running hard really suppresses my appetite so I was not hungry at all (and after the glazed donut I inhaled after the finish…and the banana…and the 3 orange quarters…), my tummy wasn’t ready for real food yet.  But the sub was for my 4-hour drive to Louisville for my conference.  I knew once the Hunger Beast woke up I’d most likely be in the middle of no where.  The sandwich was inhaled 2 hours into the drive and 1.5 hours later since I didn’t know when I’d get another chance to eat that night.  Conferences are great at sucking up your time…fun.

The week before the race was not the best “race week prep”. Work was horrendous, I felt like I was getting sick, I was utterly exhausted just 2 days before the race, was starving all day Friday (paired with overly tired means my body is fighting a sickness, fighting for more energy through food).  I felt worn down and was so worried about the chilly & rainy race day forecast.  I was a mess.  Seriously.  Big. Mess.  To top it off, I was worried about my fiber choices and how the ol’ tummy would hold up.  Results?  WINNER!  I’m so glad I figured out how to approach MY fiber intake and how my body reacts before the race.  That’s what I love about running & races: it’s a constant work in progress, always working toward improving yourself toward perfection.

What am I doing RIGHT now…?

 

Oh, Don Draper...

NOT partaking in Convention social events (I’m too tired, too introverted, and love TV too much…and maybe need to finish my presentation…) and watching Mad Men.  I’m seriously disappointed in everyone down at 4th Street Live right now…don’t they realize what’s happening on AMC?!  Sheesh…

 

 

I Heart Fiber & Race Week Prep

HAPPY RACE WEEK!  Ok, it’s usually not a happy week for me.  I’m supposed to limit my caffeine intake, fiber intake, fat intake, etc, sleep 8+ hours each night, and NOT think about if I’m going to fail.  HA.  Like that’s going to happen.  Technically, my caffeine intake should have been next to zero during my 12-16 week training.  Too bad life had different plans for me and I legitimately needed caffeine nearly 4-5 times per week.  I usually rely on decaf coffee and can convince myself that it’s the real deal, but not the last few months.  I have, however, gone without caffeine since we came back from the New Orleans service trip.  Go me! 🙂  Fiber on the other hand…that’s something I can’t cut out.  I did that twice and my body overreacted in the OPPOSITE way.  So uh, I wasn’t so “good to go” before the gun went off at the “Start”.  Not cool.  So I’m going to keep my fiber intake the same this time.  It could end disastrously.  Will keep you posted in the most PG version possible 🙂  Sleep?  HA! Right…  T minus 3 days until race day.  EEEK!

Speaking of fiber – I eat an INSANE amount each week.

Breakfast:

  • Protein shake (after a hard workout) that includes spinach & a banana
  • 2 pieces of whole wheat toast
  • 1/4 cup “clean” granola
  • 1/2 a grapefruit or 2 prunes (crazy life, I tell ya!)
  • 1 egg (for the choline healing properties in the yolk)

Snack:

  • Grapes or 1 apple

Lunch:

  • Snow peas
  • Salad (spinach, 1-2 whole carrots, 3-4 slices of cucumber, broccoli, almond slivers)
  • Greek yogurt w/blueberries, strawberries, flax seed, “clean” granola
  • Entree of some sort (salmon in a bag, Greek Quinoa salad, or beans & rice)

Supper:

  • Chicken/fish entree
  • Brown rice, quinoa, or potato of some kind (either mashed or baked)
  • Even more veggies or salad.

Dessert:  Always. Usually low sugar ice cream…but no fiber.  Whew!

Of course that’s not ALL I eat…I sneak in a few snacks throughout the day.  But uh, that’s a crazy amount of fiber, eh?  Wish me luck on Saturday…

NEW Recipes & Sunday Runday

Goodness…what a crazy week so far!  Tomorrow is a true HUMP day.  Booked solid from 9am-4pm with no time to breathe, eat, OR go to the bathroom…hmm…tomorrow could turn out badly.  Stay tuned.

Anyhoo…lots of happenings to fill everyone in on.

First up: Last Weekend.  Hot Yoga, Laundry, cleaning, etc.  St. Patrick’s Day.  My LEAST favorite holiday everrrrrr.  Don’t ask me why.  I just think it’s the dumbest “American made” holiday.  And for Pete’s sake do NOT kiss me (I’m NOT Irish) and do NOT punch me for not wearing green.  I refuse to wear green that day.  And I don’t know why I’m such a St. Patrick’s Day snob.  Maybe if America celebrated a German holiday I wouldn’t be such a poop about it…ok that’s not true.

HOWEVER, we had a game night with a few friends and enjoyed 3 new foods:  Stout Beef Stew, Irish Soda Bread, and Stout Chocolate Cake.  Big fan of all 3, especially the Soda Bread.  Gosh I love bread.  Here are some links for various recipes of each:

Stout Beef Stew:  Food Network’s Beef & Guinness Stew, Simply Recipes’ Irish Beef Stew Recipe, & AllRecipes’ Beef & Irish Stout Stew.  Aside from all the red meat and the measly 2 tbsp of flour, it’s a fairly healthy recipe.  Yay for veggies & stew!

Irish Soda Bread: Food Network/Ina Garten’s Irish Soda Bread, Simply Recipe’s Irish Soda Bread.  Irish Soda Bread = not so good for you, but who cares?  You only eat it once a  year anyway.  Live it up!

Stout Chocolate Cake: Chocolate Stout Cake w/Irish Cream Frosting from BrownEyedBaker.com, Chocolate Stout Cake w/Bailey’s Cream Cheese Frosting from ClosetCooking.com

Just a fair warning: I recommend that you actually LIKE stout/Guinness before trying the cake or you won’t appreciate the after taste of the stout.  I, shockingly, enjoy Guinness so it was a nice surprise aftertaste!  YUM!

After just a few hours of sleep that night, I got up early for my LAST “long” workout before my half-marathon this Saturday.  The line up:  5-mile run, 30-minute interval bike ride, squats, lunges, step-ups, core/ab workouts, some weird move that burned my legs like crazy and made my glutes super sore (AWESOME!), and another weird move that required me to stand on one leg and move from a standing position-to seated position-to standing without the use of the opposite leg.  It’s supposed to work your core, glutes, quads, and hips.  AND WOWZA.  I barely made it up a few times.  Killer.

I knew it was my last hard leg workout for at least a week or two.  I don’t want to do too much with my race this weekend.  At this point, the extra weight training will only hurt me and not benefit my long-term goals.  No since in starting out a race already too sore.  That’s how injuries happen.

I did manage to finish my last “mile” outside.  I’ve done all of my runs on the treadmill during this training plan.  Which I DON’T recommend.  I could have a weeks’ worth of posts about how running outside is better.  But, I’ll spare you 🙂  I knew running only on the treadmill was my safest option since I was “coming back” from a serious injury that needed extra babying.  If at any moment, I needed to stop running, I could and not be 5 miles away from my car.  Plus, I was really focused on weight training so the treadmills at the gym just made sense.  But it’s extra important to run outside to get a good feel of the race surface (road/sidewalk/trail), your NATURAL pace (I run faster than I do on the treadmill…call it lack of confidence, who knows), and running outside just gives you a greater sense of accomplishment.  Although, props to all of us completing our long runs on treadmills. Hours and hours of running in the same place staring at a mute TV or people-watching is a great mental training plan!

 

Moderation & Lazy TRX

Fasten your seatbelts – this post is random as all get-out.

Those Rubens I was so excited about…?  Amazing.  I know corned beef is probably the worst thing ever for your health, but given that I only eat it once a year, I’d say there’s no harm in consuming it.  I guess I don’t eat a TRUE Ruben since I’m not a fan of sauerkraut…and I always ask my mom to only put Thousand Island dressing on half – I like to enjoy it with and without…”strange kid” as my mother always calls me…

I noticed as I was driving home from my visit that I love how my hair smells after I leave my parents house.  I know what you’re all saying:  “what…?  Weirdo!”.  But it smells like their house which is the most comforting smell in the whole world to me.  Definitely nostalgic!

Speaking of hair, I LOVE getting my hair cut.  I love having someone else brush/play with my hair (it’s so relaxing) and I just love how it feels and “hangs” after a good cut.  I had to go 10 weeks instead of 8 weeks between cuts.  Since I have shorter hair, I was definitely yearning for it to be cut.  I always play with the idea of growing it longer right before a scheduled hair cut, but this 10-week stint really helped me decide I don’t enjoy having longer hair (even shoulder-length!).  For some reason, my hair just won’t style right when it’s longer…I feel like it just hangs and is “blah”.  It’s definitely meant for a shorter, low-maintence bob.  I used to go every 6 weeks (shorter hair needs more frequent cuts).  But I read a tip from Suze Orman that you should extend your cuts to 8 weeks to help save a few bucks.  If I went every 6 weeks, I would spend nearly $175 per year on hair cuts.  Now that I go every 8 weeks, I only spend $130.  Ok, so I’m only saving $45, but that’s $45 that can gain interest in my bank account, or $45 in ice cream(!!), or a new pair of shoes that I don’t NEED but WANT to help me through a rough emotional/stressful time.  Just sayin…I know, I know…money & “things” can’t buy happiness, but that high you get after a purchase (no matter how small) sure is NICE! 🙂

Also on the menu last night was cookie dough!  My mom made a batch of chocolate chip cookies a few weeks ago and forgot to give me the cookie dough she had set aside for me.  So for dessert, I had 2 bites of cookie dough.  Also terrible for you.  BUT I believe in following a super healthy diet (low fat, low sodium, LOTS of fruits & veggies, and the foods you just can’t give up IN MODERATION).  If you just refuse yourself anything comforting and delicious, you’re dooming yourself for failure.  “Dieting” should be a permanent lifestyle change.  Ask yourself:  Can I give up pizza, margaritas, cookie dough, and bacon (my random comfort foods) for the REST of my LIFE?!  Um..no.  So enjoy them infrequently and in moderation.  Your body and mind will thank you later.

Since my Fridays the last few months have been Boot Camp days, I didn’t really know what to do for a workout today.  I decided yesterday at the gym that it would need to be a light workout day today since I was tired and worn out (in a good way).  I decided to sleep in (6:15…woo!) and do a TRX workout.  Correction…LAZY TRX workout.  I feel bad even saying I worked out this morning, it was that pathetic.  I just felt sleepy & tired.  I did a few sets of arm, leg, & core workouts for 30 minutes then laid back in bed to listen to the thunderstorm.

I probably should have done a little more exercise this morning since I had a few bites of a Minty O’Malley cupcake from The Cup (formerly known as the Cupcakery).  I was already starting to feel a LITTLE hungry so I sampled a few bites.  Again, moderation.  I know I can’t cut this stuff out, so I just have a few bites.  Totally worth it – I’ll just call it my TGIF treat.

I’ll be sure to eat a healthier dinner tonight while I’m watching the SLU vs. Memphis game.  I never thought I’d see my alma mater in the NCAA Tournament.  Go Billikens!!

William E. Ken 🙂

What’s a “billiken”, you ask?  Well I could tell you…but then I’d have to kill you…:)  Just kidding..sorta!  Here’s Wikipedia’s description:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billiken

Tomorrow’s agenda:  Hot Yoga at 8am, a little light cleaning, laundry, work speaking event at 3:30pm, game night.

 

 

 

 

BACON & Puppies!

So here’s a recap of this week….Mostly of workouts and food.

Workouts-ish:

Monday: Bye Week Volleyball took home a winner.  There were several collisions and I was just plain tuckered out.  I can’t tell you how many times I rested my head on the net while waiting for the serve.  I was passed out by 8:30 that night: no bed time snack, no TV.

Tuesdays have been recently declared as “circuits” days…sorta… My Boot Camp Groupon ran out a few weeks ago and was perfect timing since I knew I’d be gone most of March.  Plus, with the Alton Half Marathon scheduled for 3/24, Boot Camp wouldn’t have been great the last few weeks before a race.  So, to make up for missing a good circuit training, I’ve added a 1-hour “circuit” bike ride on Tuesdays, and do other circuit training after the bike ride.  It gets my heart rate pumping and I end up crazy-drenched with sweat…and starving ALL day afterwards!  The theme this week is ABS!  Lots & lots of ab workouts and I’m feeling pretty good finally.  (there were a few weeks when I was feeling really flabby…I know I’m not, but it helps when you don’t FEEL flabby too, ya know?!)

Wednesday was certainly the most challenging day this week.  Events at work made it a “blah” day – I was glad when I could “clock out” from Wednesday.  Wednesday is coincidentally always my hardest “weekday workout”.  I focused on speed (again) during my run.  I feel so much more inspired after a speed run than a hill interval run.  There’s probably some psychology behind that…I’ll look it up and let you know! Anyhoo – a 1-hour tempo speed training run really brought on the sweatiness and calorie-burn-fest.  I rocked out 5.25 miles at totally random paces, averaging about 10-minute miles (which is way fast for me!  Little legs = more turnover = slower runner).   What else makes Wednesday’s workouts harder?  LEGS.  Oh my goodness – lots of loaded squats, Bosu Ball lunges (ouch!), bridges, ab stuff (weighted incline sit-ups, decline leg lifts, twists of every kind, etc).  All wrapped up with a 20-minute interval bike ride (1 minute for each interval).  I felt AWESOME after this workout too…just like Tuesday.  Ready to inhale my protein smoothie and conquer the day.

Life as I Know It:

Did I mention that I’m working with 3 different clients to edit their dissertations?  Oy!  Don’t get me wrong – I love doing it, but expecting me to review/edit 90+ pages in 1 day is a little ridonkulous.  But don’t you worry, I’ve gotten them all edited by the deadlines.  This has been my schedule all week: Workout, Work, Scarf down dinner, Edit, Bed, Repeat. And you know what?  It’s still a pretty good life!

Life was extra good after I played with PUPPIES!  What could be better than playing with puppies?  Playing with puppies AT WORK!  A son of one of my coworkers brought in his dog’s 6-week puppies (lab-boxer mix).  They were precious and most definitely the brightest spot in my day.  The one I was holding fell asleep in my arms and I cuddled with her for a good hour.  Not gonna lie, I was TOTALLY jealous of her napping abilities.  Totally.

Food, Food, I love food:

Tuesday’s dinner and dessert consisted of bacon…lots of bacon.  We baked up some uncured bacon (better for you, apparently) with chicken, served with my Greek Quinoa Salad.  Since I was still starving, I had a peanut butter & bacon sandwich.  AH-MAZING combination.  I’ve always heard so many things about bacon & pb, but had never had the chance to try it.  Dessert?  Edy’s No Sugar Added Triple Chocolate Fudge ice cream, BACON, sugar free Hershey’s syrup, and powdered peanut butter.  Trust me, you haven’t lived until you’ve had this ice cream combination.  It was fantastic!  My mouth is still watering!

PB & Bacon Sandwich. Mine was on wheat, of course 🙂

Oh how I wish this were real...

Swiss Steak

Swiss Steak

Wednesday’s dinner was Swiss Steak served over spaghetti squash that I prepared on Monday (my catch-up on life day!).  Here is a recipe for Swiss Steak.  This isn’t the recipe I use.  I add yellow peppers & celery to mine for extra veggies!  It’s some serious comfort food, and more healthy than not.  Props to Swiss Steak!  YUM!

Tonight I’m heading home to get my hair cut and visit my parents.  On the menu for tonight?  RUBENS!  Oh my goodness, I can’t wait!!  I was extra good at lunch today so I can enjoy dinner!

Sleeping in, Braised Chicken Recipe, Demon Clock

So sorry for the lack of posts this week.  My work week (and my evenings after work) were a little nutty.  I will do my best to keep the next posts in an organized manner…HA!  right…

Remember my post earlier this week about sleep issues (or lack of sleep rather).  Well, I took a comp day on Monday to recharge my batteries and slept until 8:15am!!  Holy cow!  Granted, I didn’t get to bed until 12:30am so I didn’t set a record or anything.  But for me, that’s huge!  The last few years my body won’t let me sleep past 6am, even if I don’t go to bed until 2am.  Fun stuff, eh?   I woke up a few times in the night (darn bladder) and every time I woke up I realized how sore my muscles were.  I really wanted to take advantage of a not-so-crowded Monday hot yoga class, but for once, I listened to my body.  Sore muscles and just plain tired meant I needed to take a TRUE day off.  My poor little body was just run down.

Since my morning was freed up, my crock pot and I reunited to make Wine & Tomato Braised Chicken from EatingWell.

Source: eatingwell.com via Sarah on Pinterest

I sampled a few bites before I froze 2 batches from the recipe (2 meals in 1 recipe = awesome), and it was pretty tasty!  Who doesn’t love healthy crock pot recipes? Seriously.

Have I told you about my demon clock?  About a year ago, my bathroom wall clock had stopped.  I changed the battery, hung it back up, and carried on.  In a few weeks, it stopped again.  I assumed I had used a bad battery so I used a brand new, never-been-used battery, hung the clock up, and carried on again.  It stopped in just a few days.  WHAT GIVES?!  This time when I took the clock down, I noticed “tick, tick, tick”.  Hmm…It works when it’s NOT hanging…AHA!  I’m becoming smarter than the clock!  I leave the clock sitting on the bathroom counter, you know, to put the clock in time out and let it think about what it’s done.  It never stopped!  I thought it had stopped misbehaving so I placed it back on its little nail and gave it a good “talking to”.  It died again.  ARGH!  So I did what any mature and intelligent woman would do: I took it to my Dad to fix.  HA!  Dad’s can fix everything.  He piddled around with it, beaming that his little girl still needed her Daddy every now and then, and returned the clock with a clean bill of health.  Supposedly.  The clock stopped just a few days after placing it back on the wall.  Before taking a hammer to it, I gave it one more chance, changed the battery, and put it back on the wall.  TA-DAH! Our little heart-to-heart worked!

Until…

Just last Saturday I thought “Ugh, I hate to touch that clock to change it for DST because as soon as I do it will stop working”.  Not even 10 minutes after I had this thought, I walk into the bathroom to discover the clock had stopped working! SERIOUSLY?!  To give the clock a little credit, I changed the battery since it had been a while, adjusted the time for DST, and threw some pixie dust on it before hanging it back up.  It’s died every day since then.  Possessed.  Absolutely possessed.

Evil clock.

Aside from my battles with the clock, I’ve been soaking up this AMAZING weather.  After all,

Source: dontcallmebetty.tumblr.com via Nancy on Pinterest

Even though I know better than to wear flip flops after countless podiatrist appointments…I just can’t help myself!

NEEEEED SLEEEEEP and Running Wish List

Mk, I have a LOT to fill you in on.  Well, not really since my life isn’t THAT exciting, but I’ve had over a week of “life” that’s happened.  A “New Orleans Only” post will come soon.  But for now, here’s a run-down on the days since we got back.

In the last day or two I came to the realization that I am permanently and severely sleep deprived.  But we all are, right?  Well, yes, but when I’m nearly falling asleep at a trivia night at 10pm and when knocking out an 8-miler on the treadmill I feel that I could fall asleep at any moment, that’s kind of a problem.

I usually run to the grocery store for just a few things after my long Sunday workout (it’s right next door to my gym).  This past  Sunday was no different and I needed the ingredients for my Greek Quinoa Salad.  I apparently seemed to be wandering around aimlessly and in a fog in the produce section because one of the restock guys asked me if I found what I was looking for.  I didn’t realize I looked like I was having trouble finding something.  HA! So, I decided I need to make sleep more of a priority.  Which is weird to say since it IS a priority for me, but here of late there’s usually something that keeps me awake (usually in the middle of the night) or forces me to wake up crazy early to squeeze everything in for the day.

Coincidentally, I just read an article in Women’s Health last night about more and more women tackling epic to-do lists, leaving us exhausted, run-down, and ragged.  The problem?  This takes a serious toll on health & happiness.  Duh.  Unfortunately, the article didn’t tell me anything I didn’t already know: drink plenty of water, limit phone/internet usage after work, don’t over-train at the gym, take a multi-vitamin to prevent anemia, get 7-9 hours of sleep, meditate, eat for energy.  Blah, blah, blah.  Too bad I already do that (except meditate…by the time I have time in my day to do it I’ve practically collapsed into my bed).

But seriously, currently working on getting more rest and “me time” to recharge my batteries.  This running on “E” crap just isn’t cutting it.  Big props to all of you out there running on fumes and to all of you who have managed to put YOU first for your own health and happiness.  There’s nothing selfish about that at all.

Some randoms for you:

I ate at Chili’s for the first time yesterday.  It was delicious.  We had the Margarita Chicken (only 525 calories and 14g of fat!) and split the roasted corn guacamole w/chips & salsa appetizer.  SO GOOD!  Here’s a review AND free “copy cat” recipe: http://www.squidoo.com/chilismargaritagrilledchickenrecipe.

Before/after dinner we ran to Bed Bath & Beyond and Sports Authority, which was a big mistake because now I have a “running apparel wish list” that’s about three miles long.  Some new things I can’t stop thinking about:

  1. Saucony’s new Crossfire.  In pink.  If any of you know me, you know it’s weird that I want the pink over the blue.  But I love obnoxious pink.  And it’s obnoxious neon pink.  Love 🙂

My feet and these shoes are practically best friends already.

2.  Under Armour’s Classic Run Cap.  In purple.  It fits way better than my Nike running hat.

Purple just makes me happy!

3.  Under Armour’s Fitted/Compression Capris and any of the fitted capri pants they sell.  It’s sad that I “shop” more for my running/comfy wardrobe than my work/socializing wardrobe.  Eh well…priorities 🙂

My legs will thank me later for the compression 🙂

4.  Weighted vest.  Um…what…?  True story.  For workouts.  Working out with more weight will make me speedy fast when I run/workout without it.  Awesome!

Yay for potential new workout clothes 🙂  A girl can dream, right?!