11.19.2013

Couch to 5k Review - Week 4 take... 3?



Confession time!

I fell off the running wagon big time. I went for two weeks without doing anything. Basically, daylights savings time completely ruined everything. My schedule up until that point was to run when I got home from work, which I was doing well. But then the time change happened and it was pitch dark when I got home. Not going to lie, I'm not gonna run in the dark. I just don't feel safe, and I'm certain that I will trip over something and hurt myself! :)

So... the good news is that yesterday, I woke up early and went for a morning run. This was an absolutely HUGE hurtle for me, because I am far from a morning person, and it was COLD. And it was DAWN.  But I did it, and I'm really proud of myself!

I still need to figure out the whole what-do-I-wear-to-run-in-the-winter thing.  But honestly, yesterday I felt so freaking good. Exercising in the morning is totally where it's at. It just pumps you up for the day! I did learn though that I need to eat a little something before I go. All I had was half a cup of coffee, and I did not fare well. My energy flagged about halfway through.

Oh, and the other confession? I didn't use the app. I just decided to go out and run at my own pace. I alternated between walking and running for about 20 minutes, I have no idea how much I ran or how far. Cest la vie - I don't really care!

In other news - I've signed up for a challenge! It's by Jamie Mendell and It will start next week. It's a healthy living challenge to get you through the holidays, but as of yet, I don't know much else about it. I'm excited though!. I don't want to face January feeling terrible about the choices I made! You should sign up too - it's FREE!




11.06.2013

WIAW - getting healthy for fall

Is is Wednesday again already? I love that the theme this month is fall into good habits. I have been having a lot of fun lately getting back into cooking, and my newest habit is cooking things that will last a few days or through the week. On Sunday I've been roasting veggies, making big pots of soup, hardboiling eggs, or baking up some goodies for the week. It makes me feel comforted to know that my fridge is stocked with some healthy foods!






Here's something I did this weekend that was inspired by folks I've seen around the blogosphere. Rather than buying a bunch of single serve yogurts, that just create a lot of waste (and are filled with sugar) I bought one big container of plain yogurt and some frozen berries. Then I divided it all up into these adorable jars for the week. I got six of them. This has worked out so great!! My family for some reason has an aversion to eating yogurt out of the big tubs, but they love these!  I'm looking forward to coming up with different combos.


For a post workout treat this weekend I made a green smoothie, and topped it with some granola. I've never done that before either, but have seen other bloggers do it. So yummy!



With my prepped veggies, lunches have been super easy. Just make up a wrap with a bunch of good stuff. This one has hummus and roasted sweet potatoes, avocado and cucumbers. Maybe that sounds like a weird combination, but it was super tasty!!



Also over the weekend Skater Girl and I treated ourselves to a good old fashioned girls night. We got some takeout sushi, a movie and got in our PJs and relaxed. It was such a great night. I so love having a daughter that we can do these kinds of things! It's especially awesome to have a girl that loves sushi!!



Also, I have to say that I am just loving apples right now! They are so good, at the moment we are going through two bags a week. Can't get enough.

happy hump day everybody!

Do you prep food on the weekends?



10.30.2013

WIAW: comfort food for fall

It's getting cold here - and that means some time spent by the fire! We have a woodstove in our living room which becomes the favorite hangout spot for knitting, reading, and the favorite spot for all the pets!


This morning I snapped this photo of the leaves on my car... it's just cold and wet here right now which means one thing to me... comfort food!!



Definitely one of my biggest warming comfort foods right now is Pho, a Vietnamese soup that is soooo tasty and warms you right up. I swear I could eat this every single day!!




Another great comfort food? Chocolate of course!! This awesome pudding is made by throwing avocados, cocoa powder, maple syrup and cinnamon into a blender. It's ridiculously good, and fairly healthy. Good fats, and did I mention chocolate? mmmm...hmmm



Baked goods and coffee never hurt when the weather is less than perfect...







Another great thing about this time of year is it's pomegranate season!! I have an awesome recipe right here for pomegranate salad that is super tasty. My daughter and husband both fight over it every time I make it.




So that's it for the last WIAW of October!




Hope everyone enjoys themselves tomorrow! Happy Halloween!



10.29.2013

C25k review: Week 4 - take 2


Last week ended up being kind of a bust. I ended up running on Wednesday, but was practically limping by the end of it. My shins were killing me and my calves were cramping up. I guess I overdid it a little! I'm not sure if it was that or if I just wasn't warm enough. It's getting very cold outside right now, and my legs never felt warm at all during the entire run. Unfortunately, because I was in so much pain on Wednesday, I just rested on Thursday and Friday. Then we had an insanely busy weekend. I did make it to dance class, but I didn't do anything else.

And yesterday, which was Monday, and the day that I should be starting Week 4 again, since I didn't get through it last week... I did nothing. I worked for 10 hours yesterday, came home starving and tired. My daughter was begging for dinner, and it was getting dark outside. What was I to do? I put on some comfy clothes and ate dinner with my daughter. Then I graded papers for two more hours. Not the best day.


Tonight I'm going to yoga. I suppose I could try to run this afternoon, but after the fiasco last week, I think I'll just skip it. If I can do Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, I'll be back on track. This weather is making it SO HARD. Seriously, how do people run in the winter? I need some motivation, because I can already feel that winter sadness creeping in. Every winter I just want to hibernate and not do anything. I grew up quite a bit south of here, and it was sunny and relatively warm year-round. I don't think I'll ever become accustomed to the weather here.


How do you stay motivated in the winter? Any tips for running in the cold?

10.22.2013

C25k review: week 3

I'm sure you've all seen this before, but it's so true, right?

I made it through week 3!

The first run was the easiest of the 3 oddly enough. I'm starting to think that those two days off make for some fresh legs. Granted, I still dance on Saturdays, so it's not like I'm doing nothing, but a break definitely helps!

Monday's run went smoothly, I wasn't sure I'd be able to run for three minutes straight, but I got through it relatively fine. What shocked me was then how easy running for 90 seconds was! I had a couple of moments this week where I thought to myself, I could just keep going! I of course never listen to these voices, maybe I should?

So, yesterday I started on Week 4. Let me just say, it didn't go very well. First of all, it was getting dark outside, and I'd already had a long day. But that wasn't what really slowed me down. On Saturday I had my usual crazy hard dance class. Then, on Sunday I attended a "Monster Yoga Practice" at my favorite studio Shine. They have been doing these 2.5- 3 hour practices once a month, to deepen and further your practice. This month's practice was designed to help us face our "monsters" such as self-doubt, insecurity, envy etc... We began with meditation, and then went through an absolutely brutal asana practice, followed by a lot of pranayama. It was magical, I must say, I absolutely loved it! But man, were my legs sore yesterday!!!

So the program for Week 4 is to run for 3 minutes, then rest for 1, run for 5 minutes, rest for 2.5 and repeat. I didn't make it through the two 5 minute runs (I did 4 minutes, and then 2). I'm hoping that I can do it on Wednesday, but if I can't, I think I'll repeat this week again. I don't mind repeating it. I'm really enjoying the process, and the program! I still feel like I'm accomplishing something, even thought it's challenging. The fact that running for three minutes isn't that bad, considering that when I started running for 60 seconds felt like it was going to kill me? Pretty awesome. Also, Week 4 has you running for a total of 16 minutes out of 21. So, it's actually a lot. I'm not going to stress about it. I'm just so glad that I'm sticking to the program!!!

As a reward to myself for making it though 3 weeks, I bought myself a pair of Lululemon leggings. I figured I can wear them to yoga (2x a week) dance (1x a week) and running (3x a week). That's a lot of use! My other el-cheapo leggings are starting to look not so great. It's a big investment, but man - they are so comfortable and well made! And they do make your tush look pretty great. I got the black Wonder Unders. I'm actually thinking about buying another pair if I make it through the whole program, that's how much I love them.


10.16.2013

WIAW: warming up for fall

Good morning everyone! Hope we all have a great hump day. My Wednesdays are excruciatingly long, but tonight I get to meet some friends out for drinks, so that will help me get through! 

Time for some FOOD LOVE - shout out to Jen at Peas and Crayons for keeping the fun going!


It's mostly healthy eats, with a spooky treat at the end.

I had a lovely breakfast at my favorite coffee shop, homemade granola, which they warm up for you and some tangerine ginger iced tea. It's finally starting to cool off a little outside, but not that much yet. 


How's this for a fun lunch?! I had some leftover brown rice, so I made Skater Girl and I some homemade sushi rolls for lunch. She was super excited. Sushi is her favorite thing to eat! 


And I'm still trying to perfect my macro bowls. This one has walnut encrusted tempeh, brown rice with gomasio, sauteed kale, sauerkraut, and avocado slices. Yum yum yum



And now for the treat! I made these pumpkin donuts over the weekend for a pumpkin carving party we went to. They are vegan - the recipe comes from Oh She Glows (thanks Angela!!) These were a HUGE hit. You should make them right now. I might make them every weekend - no kidding. My donut pan has six holes. That's the perfect amount for the three of us. Every. weekend.


Here's Skater Girl and the Oak Man hard at work on the pumpkin. SG designed it to look like a street sign. Ghost Crossing!

Happy October everyone!


10.14.2013

Couch to 5k: week 2 - still going!


I completed week two of the couch to 5k program last week! I managed to get in three runs, again on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. On Monday and Friday I had the joy of getting to run in the late morning, because of fall break. These lovely pictures are from my run on Friday. I discovered that if I can run in the morning (but not super early), I love it! Up until now I've been running only in the evenings. It's a nice way to wind down after work, but it's starting to get dark earlier, and on my run Wednesday evening, it was almost dark when I got home. I don't really want to run in the dark, mostly because I'm afraid that clumsy me is going to trip and fall!



I'm still enjoying taking the puppy with me, although speaking of tripping and falling, she was zig-zagging so much during this particular one that it was starting to get me frustrated! Usually after about 10 minutes she settles down though. It's hilarious because I feel like I'm really pushing myself to run and she looks like she's barely trotting. She can run probably about 10x faster than me at my fastest!

The weather right now is absolutely perfect for this program! If anyone is thinking of starting, I'd have to say early fall is the best. I'm trying not to think too hard about what I'm going to do once winter hits.

About the program itself, the runs are hard, I'm not going to lie. In fact, I'm a little freaked out that today I have to run for THREE MINUTES STRAIGHT.(gasp!) I feel like such a loser saying that because so many people run a lot longer than that. But I sincerely felt like I was going to die last week when I had to run for 90 seconds. I'm just going to try to trust the program. That's the advice I keep hearing, just trust that it will work. It already seemed easier by the end of the week last week.

And, if worst comes to worst, I will just repeat this week again next week! No worries, the important thing is that I just keep going. That I keep on schedule. The pride that I feel completing a week is amazing. If nothing else, this program has given me quite a feeling of accomplishment. I never thought that I could be a runner (I'm still having a hard time referring to myself that way, seeing as running for two minutes is a feat!)

I'd love to hear about other experiences with running that other people have had? Any advice for newbies? leave a comment!

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