Category Archives: Running


That’s right, it’s finally light outside after 4pm, and we have started running again!

Some friends at work and I run once a week after work (about 5:45).  In theory, we’re training for the Corporate Challenge (a 3.5 mile race with thousands of people around Back Bay) in June, but we also do it to stay in shape.  We’re all about the same speed, so it works out well.  Since it was our first time in about 5 months (I haven’t really run in about 2-3 months), we did about 2 miles with 50% walking and 50% jogging.  We run on a path down by the Charles River (which is still very swollen from the rains last week), and it was a bit muddy at times.  But hey, it was our first week back!

Anyway, for some random eats pictures.  My friend made dinner for Matt and I last night (since we’re so busy with studying).  It was curry.  She made some chicken on the side for Matt.

Tonight, I realized that my avocado was ripe (YAY!), so I made a little burrito type thing with avocado, cheddar jack, and red beans.

It actually tasted a bit funny.  Maybe I should have added the avocado AFTER microwaving.

So regarding the milk discussion, it’s very interesting people’s opinions on milk.  Many people avoid it for both health and “ethical” reasons.  Hmmm . .  like I said, I’m not a very big milk drinker, although Matt drinks it all the time (with “cookies”).   I will still use it with oatmeal and cereal.  And chocolate milk is so good from time to time.

Lazy Sunday

Yup, we’re pretty lazy.  Well, got up around 10:15 and still made it to church at 11:15.  We tried out a new church (about 10 minutes away) that is supposed to have a very active young adults group.  It filled up pretty nicely, so maybe it’ll be good.  The only weird part was this woman who was witnessing about her time with an organization in Florida that works with people dealing with homosexuality.  Not to get into a discussion on it, but it sounded like the goal of the organization was to talk people OUT of homosexuality.   I started to feel very uncomfortable, but afterward, the minister did say “I know that some of you may not agree with this, but it’s great that we can talk about such controversial issues in our church.”  I felt a bit better.

But I digress.  After church we headed to one of our favorite restaurants “Not Your Average Joe’s”, where we enjoyed the bread and oil (too fast, no pic!) and I got a half of a chicken tuscan sandwich and cup of creamy tomato soup.

The soup was DELICIOUS, but the sandwich was a bit burnt or something.  Also it came with the whole milk mozzarella that I just don’t care for.  This makes me sad, since I have NEVER had something at Joe’s that I don’t like.  :-(   Don’t worry, we’ll return.  It is just a five minute walk from our house.

We came home and I took a bit of a nap (haven’t been sleeping well) before we headed to the gym.  I realized how out of running shape I am.  I haven’t run in at least a month, and running cardio shape leaves you so quickly!  I tried to do some intervals, but couldn’t get past the half mile mark:

  • 2 minutes 5.3 mph
  • 2 minutes 5.6 mph
  • 1 minute 5.9 mph
  • 3 minutes 3.6 mph
  • 1 minute 5.2 mph
  • 1 minute 5.3 mph
  • 1 minute 5.4 mph
  • 1 minute 5.5 mph
  • 1 minute 5.6 mph
  • 2 minutes 3.6 mph
  • 1 minute 5.3 mph
  • 1 minute 5.4 mph
  • 1 minute 5.5 mph
  • 1 minute 5.6 mph
  • 1 minute 5.7 mph
  • 3 minutes 3.6 mph

Then a cool down between 3.5 and 4 mph.  Not a very vigorous workout, but maybe I’ll get back running again.  Working on strength training and dancing mostly.

Dinner was a super California roll from Stop ‘n Shop

and two of these concoctions (just for those who requested it) low fat moose tracks ice cream, peanut butter, and lite chocolate syrup.

Mmmm . . . must go find some green veggies or something.  Need to find a healthier balance (a little more healthy and a little less sane).  But by gosh did it taste good!

Time to play with money and find out where it’s all going!


So after eating all of that WONDERFUL food that I talked about in my earlier posts Part 1 and 2.  I knew that I needed to eat veggies NOW!  The other day Susan asked about how we crave after indulging, and seriously, I just want to eat veggies and DRINK WATER!!  LOTS AND LOTS OF WATER!

Thus, when we went out to dinner with Matt’s mom’s family to the S&S Cafeteria, I only ordered vegetables (and fruit):

A very tasty fruit salad (sometimes fruit cocktails have one general taste, but this one I could taste ALL of the fruits), stewed tomatoes and okra, and mashed potatoes.  Very satisfying and I felt pretty healthy after this meal.

Saturday we celebrated Matt’s grandad’s 95th birthday (Really we should take health tips from him, he is in GREAT shape and has a cane, but doesn’t really need it).  Since everyone else in Matt’s family had gone early to get the hall ready for the party, Matt and I had the house to ourselves.  I started the day with peanut butter spoon, banana, and sausage balls

(Peanut butter spoon not shown, ate it too fast!)

After that, Matt and I did two loops around the neighborhood (we did one on January first).  It’s about 3/4 of a mile according to mapmyrun with a pretty nice hill right in the middle.

Afterwards, I did a modified workout #3 from my holiday planning twice:

  1. Warm Up: Buttkicks, High Knees, Jumping Jacks
  2. Elbows to Knees: 12x
  3. 1 Legged Pistol Squats: 12x
  4. Front & Side Raises: 12x
  5. Crunch & Punch: 12x
  6. Scissor Runs: 12x
  7. Fast Side Lunges: 1 minute
  8. Push ups & tricep dips: 12x each
  9. Side Plank Crunch:12x each side
  10. 100′s (the abs pilates move)
  11. Flutter Kicks, Scissor Kicks, Leg Lifts: 12x each side

I realized that I had “elbows to knees” twice and a lack of arm exercises, so I added in pushups and triceps.  Since I was doing this in the living room and didn’t have weights, I picked up two liters for my front and side arm raises.

After 4 days of traveling in a car, my muscles were BEGGING to be used and stretched.  My “week” of rest is over.  I can’t wait to get back to the gym.  I also really enjoyed my ab exercises.  I think from all of the sitting in the car, my stomach was OBVIOUSLY not being used, and thus felt GREAT to be exercised!

Then we went to the 95th birthday party.  I didn’t really want cake (I would much rather prefer homemade cakes, that excuse usually gets me out of some cakes!), so I had two plates of the following:

Cracker, candy almonds, nuts, m&m’s . . mmmm

We then went out to Calhoun’s for dinner, meeting up with Matt’s friend Matt (whose wife reads my blog YAY in a non stalkerish way . . . HI KRISTIN!)  Thus Matt (the friend) told my Matt’s family about the blog and I began to be free to take pictures of my food at restaurants.  His mom said “Oh pictures to say ‘Look at how healthy I am eating’?” Sarcastically I should say, “Yeah, just like this meal.”

Ribs, baked potato, onion rings from Matt’s mom’s salad (the entire family has an aversion to onions that I just do NOT understand).  Not pictured is my salad for appetizer.  Also, I ate all of the ribs, but only about 1/3 of the potato.  I was FULL!

Sunday had a few more good foods:  banana and only TWO sausage balls before church.  Then a half size spinach-shrimp salad at Applebees.

Snacked on some more nuts and a cookie or two then wasn’t too hungry, so after we got to the Knoxville airport, we went to Quiznos.  I got a veggie sub without cheese.  Since the only size they have in airports is “regular”, I had the ingenious idea to just take all of my veggies from half of the sub and combine them into one half of the sub.  IT WAS STUFFED!

The sub had onions, olives, mushrooms, tomatoes, lettuce, some vinegarette, and GUACAMOLE!! (I love guacamole, and need to add it into my diet more!)

Now we’re sitting in the Charlotte airport.  Our original flight plan was supposed to go through DCA, but it was cancelled Friday, so we were rerouted through Charlotte. Now our CLT to BOS flight is delayed by an hour.    At least it gave me a chance to finish up this post!

Back to reality tomorrow. It was a great 1.5 week vacation.  Now just 2.75 days of work until I go BACK to the ‘Nati for Amy’s wedding!

Macaroons, Morning Exercise, and M's BDay

Okay, so where did we leave off?

Well on the first day after Christmas . . my true love gave to me . . . A FREE GINGERBREAD KIT!  They were giving them out at the Food Lion (Food City?), whatev.  So that provided us an hour of entertainment while we watched BC lose to USC.

Here’s the gingerbread kit team (minus me):And the finished product!And the rear view:

Notice how the two structural engineers had to add some reinforcement to the back of the snowman and gingerbread man to get them to stand up straight.

Sunday was church then lunch at Outback (had shrimp en fuego . . . not much of a red meat person).  Then I told M that we had to go running.  I guess the last few days of not exactly eating the best things was catching up or something, but I just couldn’t go more than two minutes of jogging.  So we walked (with spurts of jogging) for about 2.5-3 miles.  Still took 45 minutes, burned 450 calories, avg HR of 151, max HR of 179.

Afterwards, M’s friend came over to watch the Colts game (don’t get me started! STUPID COACHES!)  and then the Clemson game (which they won, hooray!).  In lieu of dinner, I ate a ton of macaroons:

I also had some apples, carrots, oranges, and a snack of a mini clif bar (peanut butter of course).  So, question, does anyone have a good macaroon recipe? I tried to make them last year and while they were a bit yummy, they didn’t look like the ones that I’ve gotten at bakeries.

Anyway, M’s mom goes to the gym for swimming aerobics, so I asked to tag along to the gym this morning.  I had an hour and half (WAHOO!  M usually only gives me 45 minutes, 60 max), so I did one of my PT routines.  I wished that I had brought them, so I just did one of my last ones that I remembered.  It was the really hard arm one, which started with chin ups!

So yeah, morning exercise.  I’m an evening exerciser.  I’ve always heard that you should workout when you feel your best.  And I’m a night person.  The last few times that I’ve gone in the morning, I get really nauseous/dizzy, and my heart rate is high. Any suggestions? I did eat a banana before I went.  Should I have some more protein?  Should I wait a bit before going? I am concerned, because I was going to start going 2 mornings per week when I get back (to work with my study schedule).

Still I according to my HRM: 566 calories, 70 minutes (I laid down and did gentle stretching for the last 15 minutes or so), 177 max HR, 138 avg HR (that was all of my breaks to stop feeling nauseous).

Afterwards, I came home and munched on PB spoon and chex mix while we played some cards.  Then it was lunch time, where I decided to start eating better.  I made a salad of spring mix greenery, carrots, and BBQ pork.  And, since today is M’s birthday (and his twin sister, D), we had COOKIE CAKE!

OH NO!  My secret code of using letters has been broken!  Oh well, Happy Birthday Matt and Diana!

Then it was onto the bookstores and dinner at a fancy restaurant, the Regas.  It’s a steak and seafood place, complete with cheese wagon!

I actually am not a big cheese fan, so I wasn’t too excited.  Anyway, I decided to order the scallops and potato.  The last time we were here, I had the scallops and I remember not liking them, but I couldn’t remember why.  Unfortunately, they only have seafood and steak on the menu (no chicken), and I am not a red meat person (seriously, I eat it about once/twice per year at Arbys).  So I again went with the scallops.  Okay, I live in Boston, I should know that it wouldn’t be THAT great in Tennessee, and yes, not so good.  Here are my slightly overdone and/or slightly cold scallops and baked potato (we started with a nice salad with honey vinegarette though)

We finished the meal with some red velvet cake for birthdays.  I had a small piece.  It was a bit dry, but had REAL BUTTERCREAM icing!  SO TASTY!

After dinner, we went to see “Sherlock Holmes”.  It was really good!  I would recommend it!

By the way, we also saw “Avatar” the other day . . . meh . . I don’t know if I liked it.  The first 45 minutes concentrated on the main character who was a marine who had lost his legs (hitting a bit close to home with my brother, so I was uncomfortable), and then they were being chased in the jungle (one of my big fears, why I didn’t like LOTR #1 that much).  Afterwards, it was okay.  The plot was rather obvious.  Someone told us that it is a bad rendition of “Dances with Wolves” (an AWESOME movie) and makes of for a mediocre screenplay with visual effects.  I concur.  It was cool looking, but that was all.

Okay, must scoot.  We have to wake up early to drive up to Cincinnati!

Shopping is my cardio

Another productive Friday off.  Had lunch with work people (celebrating the end of a HUGE project) at a Thai restaurant.  I had the “Boston Bay” dish which had chili basil sauce that was “3 peppers” hot.  It was hot, and I drank like 6 glasses of water, but it was still pretty healthy!  Just scallops, shrimp, calamari, veggies, and a bit of yucky white rice.  Then I braved the malls.  Seriously, it was crazy driving around (it’s Boston any way!) and finished a bit of shopping.

I FINALLY picked up some more workout clothes

I got a short sleeve blue shirt, a purple long sleeve shirt (with a little pocket on the side), and an orange long sleeve for M!  (He loves Orange!)  Plus now we can go running outside over the Holidays!!  CHECK!  I also got a running sports bra that is VERY supportive and I tried it out yesterday at the gym

I decided to give the running intervals a try.  I made it up on the spot, so I will try it again with a bit more of a plan.

0-2 minutes 3.5 mph

2-4 minutes 5.3 mph

4-6 minutes 5.6 mph

6-8 minutes 5.9 mph

8-10 minutes 5.6 mph

10-12 minutes 5.3 mph

12-14 minutes 3.5 mph

14-16 minutes 5.6 mph

16-18 minutes 5.9 mph

18-20 minutes 6.2 mph

20-22 minutes 3.5 mph

22-24 minutes 5.9 mph

24-26 minutes 3.5 mph

26-28 minutes 5.6 mph

28-30 minutes 3.5 mph

TA DA!!  I was surprised at how easily I could go faster.  I should definitely up the speed the next time I try this.  It feels so good to “run” and not “jog”.  Even if I can’t sustain it for 30 minutes, 2 minutes feels just as great!

Friday night date night was dinner at Not Your Average Joe’s (our restaurant).  I tried the Mahi Mahi with a tasty mango slaw( (I have NEVER eaten slaw in my life and this was so delicious).  And a side of sweet potato wedges.  I couldn’t finish the wedges, so they will be a snack today!

We also finally saw episodes 1-3 of Lost Season 5!!!  Now just need to watch 4-11 to catch up to our Tivo.

Today is a Holiday Tea with my girlfriends.  I decided to not go to the gym to work out, but to have “cleaning the house” be my work out today.  Also, I might get a workout with M’s Christmas present!  ;-)   We are doing Christmas tonight and enjoying the 7-15 inches of snow about to hit Boston!

Staying on Track During the Holidays

As promised, I have come up with a plan for the holidays.

This year is going to be very odd.  For the first time EVER I am not spending Christmas with my family.

We are flying to Knoxville to be with M’s family (I got Thanksgiving, he gets Christmas). (And traveling to Cincinnati to see my dad and brothers then going to Atlanta for the Chick-Fil-A bowl)

So here’s my plan for the week and a half of traveling:

I will workout at home right until we leave.  Then take off Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  This is a brief outline, so I’m not sure if days will get changed around.  And I might not even get to workout all of those days, but at least I have my thoughts of when it would be feasible.

As far as what these workouts will consist of, well, I figured I could go running once or twice down in Knoxville (it’s not as cold or snowy as Boston).  Then I combined all of my 15 personal training sessions and picked out various exercises that are cardio, strength training, different portions of the body, etc.  Yes I made an excel sheet, because I’m a big dork, in order to organize the different moves.  Here are my three workouts that I developed:

Workout #1

  1. Warm Up: Buttkicks, High Knees, Jumping Jacks
  2. Burpees: 12x
  3. 1 Legged Squats: 12x each leg
  4. Push-ups: 12x
  5. Hollow Rock: 15x
  6. Clock Lunges: 12x each leg
  7. Tricep Dips: 12x
  8. Back Extensions:12x
  9. Planks Front & Side: 60 seconds each
  10. Leg Lift: 60 seconds
  11. Repeat 2-10 another 2x

Workout #2

  1. Warm Up: Buttkicks, High Knees, Jumping Jacks
  2. Axe Chop: 12x each side
  3. Squat Jumps: 12x
  4. Push-up Hops: 12x
  5. Leg Swing: 12x each side
  6. Foot Taps: 12x each side
  7. Plyometric Lunges: 12x each side
  8. Mountain Climbers: 12x each side
  9. Leg Lifts: 12x
  10. Ab Lengthen & Crunch:12x
  11. Repeat 2-10 another 2x

Workout #3

  1. Warm Up: Buttkicks, High Knees, Jumping Jacks
  2. Elbows to Knees: 12x
  3. 1 Legged Pistol Squats: 12x
  4. Front & Side Raises: 12x
  5. Crunch & Punch: 12x
  6. Scissor Runs: 12x
  7. Fast Side Lunges: 1 minute
  8. Elbows to Knees: 12x
  9. Side Plank Crunch:12x each side
  10. Flutter Kicks, Scissor Kicks, Leg Lifts: 12x each side
  11. Repeat 2-10 another 2x

And of course “Whittle My Middle Exercises” could be performed.  All of these exercises assume that the only space I have is in the guest room and that I have ZERO exercise equipment.  I should try to bring a yoga mat, but with the whole flying thing, it probably won’t work.

I am nervous about “weirding” out M’s family.  I mean it’s one thing for me to say “Hey Dad, I’m going for a run”, when I’m up in the ‘Nati, but what about M’s family.  If I get M to commit to some of it with me, then it wouldn’t be so bad.

I also have no idea what the plans are for most days in Knoxville, so we’ll have to play it all by ear.  I just can’t be afraid of missing workouts.  Our bodies do need a rest.  And concentrate on eating well.  His mom has been doing Weight Watchers for a few months (I can’t wait to see her!), so she’ll be supportive of healthy eating, I hope!

What are your holiday plans to stay on track?  Are you going to be “out of your comfort zone”?  Any advice from those who have been there before?

Productive Day Off

But no studying was accomplished . . .  shhh!!!

So I began my first Friday off by trying another version of oatmeal:

This version included Strawberry preserves and some cashew butter.  The strawberry preserves were DELICIOUS (of course).  I enjoyed every bite that contained a chunk of strawberry.  I also think that I don’t like HOT oatmeal.  Somehow it tastes different when it’s so hot.  I enjoy it just warm.  So it took me about 10-15 minutes (maybe more?) to finish the bowl just nibbling away.

Then I went shopping for some stuff, like M’s Christmas present.  I knew that I had to do it and get it home to wrap it while he wasn’t around.  Came home after 2 hours of shopping and had some leftovers from last night!  The chicken definitely needs some more flavor.  But still love me some guacamole!

After fueling up, I moved onto WRAPPING CHRISTMAS PRESENTS!!  Here’s the finished product so far:

This includes three presents for M, one for my mom, one for my stepdad, and M’s birthday present (his birthday is three days after Christmas).

On of my other purchases of the day was a fancy-schmancy crock pot!

So Lee (and anyone else) bring on the recipes!  I’ll take anything that you like.  Also, M doesn’t like onions or peppers (many veggies in general), so if you have any that don’t include those, share them as well!  Hopefully I’ll be updating soon with tasty uses for the crockpot myself!

Finally, the remainder of the day was spent running and a bit of whittle my middle at the gym (one minute each of plank, side planks, plank on stability ball, and jack-knifes).   Then onto date night with M!  A Friday Tradition!

Busy Busy Busy

Sorry to be MIA for a few days.  It has been a bit crazy with bells and visitors and work and the like.  So here’s a recap of what I’ve been doing:

First of all, Thursday I actually got up EARLY (for those of you who don’t know me, I am NOT a morning person) and went to the gym.  Look here’s the clock in my car on the way there:

At the gym I did one of my PT routines that has a lot of jumping in it (one legged jumps up on bench, jump squats, and jump rope).  So I was inspired to listen to the “Jump” songs on my iPod.   I have FIVE songs that start with JUMP:

  • Jump (For My Love)
  • Jump in the Line (think Beetlejuice)
  • Jump Jive An’ Wail
  • Jump On It
  • Jumper

I especially was inspired by “Jump (for my love)”, which reminded me of Hugh Grant in “Love Actually”.  (LOVE THAT MOVIE)

After working out, I decided to be adventurous and try a new recipe (part of my December Goals).  So I went with a bowl of oatmeal based on Susan’s Best Bowl of Oatmeal Ever.  Here’s my creation:

It included:

  • 3/4 c. oats
  • 3/4 c. milk (I learned don’t listen to what the back of the canister says, it has 2x as much milk and ended up with milk oats)
  • 1 tbsp. of cashew butter
  • Semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Sweetened coconut

Well, it was okay.  I have decided that I’m not very sure about the cashew butter.  Therefore I must figure out what to do with the remainder of the jar.  Also, it was very filling.  I ate about 2/3 of the what’s in the bowl.  Although I wasn’t full all the way until lunch.  I DID NOT include protein powder.  I am still undecided as to its nutritional validity.  Also I don’t have it, and it’s expensive!

For lunch I had my leftover Chinese from Wednesday:

Then . . . my roomie from Purdue came into town (for a night after work stuff) and we got to hang out!  YAY!!  We took her to one of my our favorite restaurants “La Casa De Pedro”, where I had Camarones Tropicales de Kristofer

Shrimp in half coconut shell with coconut sauce, yucca, beans and rice, and plantains!  SOO GOOD!

Afterwards, we returned home to watch some college football, chat and drink some wine!  YES WE FINISHED THE WHOLE BIG BOTTLE!

Friday morning came way to early.  Took Kathleen to the airport, reported to work and had 3 hours of post-disaster assessment training, and then SUSHI FRIDAY!  Anyone who wants to can put in $10 and we get TRAYS of sushi from Whole Foods!  Here’s my  plate:

Friday evening had bell concert in Keene, NH.  Then Saturday bell concert in Bedford, MA.  THEN I drove in the snow (really not a great night for driving) out to my mom’s to watch the ACC football championship (Clemsoooon! lost). 

Also, I had my mom measure my BM dress for a hem.  And we discussed jewelry and what not.  I asked her about the top being big and she replied “Actually, this dress is too big for you!”  YAY!!  Of course, now I just have to have it modified so that it doesn’t fall down and give everyone a show!

We woke up to the first dusting of snow for the season:

M and I went for a quick 20 minute jog Sunday morning, lunch with the folks, then back on the road.  Bell concert in Westborough.  And now it’s Monday . . . BOO!!!

Plan for the week:

Monday: Tap

Tuesday: Training

Wednesday: Ballet

Thursday: Lifting

Friday: running

Saturday: Lifting

Sunday: rest

Pretty aggressive . . .

Also, I can now announce what was my “upsetting news” from Wednesday.  My brother, who is a Marine, informed us that he will be deployed in late winter.  Not surprising news after the announcement by President Obama, but upsetting nonetheless.  He survived his first 7 month tour in Iraq two years ago.  And we always thought that he would have a second tour, but weird things went on.  Anyway, he was going to re-enlist, but become a corrections officer, which doesn’t involve involuntary deployment.  Now plans change . . . please keep him in your prayers for the next year.

Thanksgiving Food Part 2

Well, the favorite holiday has come and gone.  Here is a pictorial recap of the food of the weekend:

The spread (and my beautiful cousin, Ellen)

My plate: roll, mashed potatoes, peach, peas, sweet potato casserole, balsamic onions, broccoli, turkey, and stuffing.

Brunch ring (in log shape)

Ginger carrot soup and curried Indian pototes.

Not pictured: chocolate chip cookies, multiple glasses of wine, crab cake, second helping of mashed potatoes, mashed potatoes for dinner, toast with gravy for breakfast, caramel-chocolate popcorn, banana, chick-fil-a and TCBY on the way back. 

Wow that sounds like a lot, but really, I didnt’ feel like I binged that much.  It’s just there is always so much snacky foods around.  And I did go running Wednesday before we left, and then Friday (after shopping).  Friday, I made M go twice (since he’d already gone with my friend while I was shopping).  We did about two miles, approximately 30 minutes, 300 calories, max HR 183, avg HR 160 (whoa!). 

Here’s a gratuitous picture of my cousin’s new dog (and my aunt’s dog) all dressed up:

Buster is wearing a blue Snuggie for dogs.  And Piper (the newest addition) is wearing a “bad to the bone” t-shirt.  So cute! 

We got back to Beantown about 10pm Saturday night. It took us 11 hours on the way down, and 10 hours on the way back.  Stupid New Jersey Turnpike!  Four hours in the armpit of America! 

Sunday I had a bells concert, but stuck to my routine of weight lifting in the morning.  I did my training routine from last week 2.5 times.  Stats: 56 minutes, 456 calories, 176 max HR, 143 avg HR, pretty darn good! 

Here’s hoping I get right back on the bandwagon and focus on exercising and eating well!


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