Category: Exercise

Recipe for an Enjoyable Weekend

You know what makes me happy? A successful weekend.
You know what a successful weekend is? An enjoyable one.
You know my recipe for an enjoyable weekend? I’m about to tell you:

1. Enjoying winning flavour combinations

Cheddar Cheese on Pumpernickel bread

2. Buying new Holiday tea

More loose leaf tea from DavidsTea. One of their five Holiday flavours

This tea is full of dried apple and almonds. I even began to wonder if there was even any tea in there

3. Solving puzzles while enjoying lunch

Yes, I like to solve puzzles. Yes, I am aware I am a bit of a geek.

4. Going for a walk in the fall leaves

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What do you do to enjoy your weekend? Do you like to solve puzzles? If so what are your favourite type?

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Half-Marathon Recap

If anyone ever asks me why I love running I will tell them “because it feels like I’m flying”. Not necessarily flying fast, and not necessarily flying pain-free, but flying with no burdens, no responsibilities, and no boundaries.

This Sunday, I ran my second half-marathon and although the circumstances weren’t ideal, I’ve got nothing to complain about.

The expo
The loot. I bought headband to cover my ears because wind hurts my eardrums. Note: I’ve blurred my bib number in this photo (and all upcoming photos) because I am paranoid about stalkers finding out my last name.

The Circumstances:

The Wind: The route was along the waterfront which didn’t offer any shelter from the gusting winds (the morning forecasted winds gusting 40-60 km/hr). Applying my physics knowledge to real life, I’m pretty sure wind is going to affect smaller people more then larger people. If only it had been a tailwind rather than an opposing wind!

The Nerves: My stomach was tied in knots from a mix of excitement and anticipation. I wasn’t as nervous for my first half marathon because my goal had only been to finish it. This time I had a real goal of 1:45h, and a cloud nine goal of 1:39h.

September’s Training. Click to zoom.

The Stitch: About half way through my lower abdomen and back started to really cramp up, and slowly made it’s way to a stitch in my side which lasted the entire second half. I wouldn’t let it slow me down until it got unbearable the last three miles. The only time I didn’t feel it was the last kilometre, but honestly can anyone really feel anything the last kilometre?

I’m in the purple top and black shorts.

The Outcome:

Despite the non-ideal circumstance I still made my real goal, and came in 29/562 for my category.

I shaved just over 15 minutes from from my first half-marathon time exactly 5 months and 1 day ago. That is something to be excited about, because honestly improvement is what I strive for.

Nike+ Summary (Click to Zoom). Note that my Nike+ sportsband slightly overestimates speed

I keep kicking myself over the fact that if I had been 3 seconds faster I would have been 27th in my category, but honestly that is just my uber-competitive nature setting in. I’m proud of my self and refuse to let competitive-me let happy-me down.

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Are you a competitive person? If you run, why do you like running? How do you deal with stitches/cramps when running?

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Catching Up: WIAW

Thanks for all your advice on my sticky situation! Since many of you wanted me to keep you posted, here’s what went down: I prayed (thanks to Shannon‘s lovely advice) then I emailed him being more firm then last year. I was considering waiting until I saw him in person on Tuesday, but I didn’t want his imagination to run wild until then. As far as I can tell everything is sorted out.

On another note I apologize for not being able to read all of your lovely posts lately. I’ve been swamped with regular school work, preparing for a technical interview, and training for a half-marathon mid October.

I didn’t want to miss out on WIAW though, so here goes some of my Wednesday eats. You can bet your bottom dollar I didn’t manage to snap a picture of everything that went down the hatch. Cold cereal: puffed corn, puffed kamut, 1/2 scoop of protein powder, 2 tbsp flax, blueberries, almond breeze

Good ol’ Alligator stew made with: vanilla protein powder, spinach, ice, strawberries, canned pumpkin, cold apple green tea, a dash of nutmeg. Topped with crushed crackers, and cinnamon.

A dark dinner: black beans with greek-salsa sauce, kale chips with nutritional yeast, and asparagui (I know it’s a asparagus plural, but I like the sound of asparagui!)

Now I’m off to go catch up on my google reader. The only thing harder then keeping up, is catching up.

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Do you ever change words even though it’s the wrong grammer? What has been keeping you busy lately? Favorite recent eats? 

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Adaga Badaga

We all have our sayings right? Some say wicked, some say hurray, some say…something else. I say adaga badaga. You have no idea how many times I haven’t written adaga badaga in a post or comment, to then realize that no one knows what it means. But my backspace button is getting tired, so I figured I would clear it up over at the WIAW party hosted by the lovely Peas and Crayons

Breakfast:

{Oat Bran Method using Tetley Blueberry Ginseng Tea and vanilla extract}

Adaga Badaga: the thought of pleasure.

Ex: As I insert the first spoonful of oat bran I think “adaga badaga, that is delicious”. The winner this morning was Blueberry Muffin oat bran. It was made with cooled blueberry tea, and I mixed in greek yogurt before tucking it into bed the fridge for the night.

Morning Snack:

{breadie (recipe coming soon) with peanut butter + apple}

Adaga Badaga: the oh no sigh

Ex: You remember when I took a tumble? Well all of my runs after that I could feel a tiny little pull in my groin. But not even enough to remember after my run. Until my Saturday run when something aggravated it, because I could hardly walk all Saturday and Sunday…adaga badaga.

Lunch:

{Purple people eater alligator stew: (Blueberries, Cranberries, spinach vanilla protein powder, cold blueberry tea, and xanthan gum)}

Adaga Badaga: the sigh of relief

Ex: After icing (yes, it is akward to ice your groin in case you were wondering) and a few days rest I went for a run on, and adaga badaga the pain was minimal, what a relief! Sure, my pace was slower and I couldn’t do hills, but that’s not what matters right now!

Snack:

Adaga Badaga: an exclamation of excitement

Ex: On the weekend I bought a new mug, and exclaimed “adaga badaga”! It’s big and wide enough to be used as a bowl!

sheep yogurt (very good!), apples, blueberries, hemp hearts

Dinner:

Adaga badaga: a mutter of annoyance

Ex: When someone leaves the watermelon/milk/yogurt out of the fridge and it gets warm, adaga badaga

Snack:

Adaga Badaga: the sigh of contentment

Ex. Relaxing into bed after an relaxing day, adaga badaga.

Puffy Protein Pudding, but with 2 tbsp of Bob’s Red Mill Hemp Protein Powder

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Is there a word you catch yourself always saying?

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Wordless Weeekends!

Okay, so maybe not wordless, but of a few words at least:

Exercise:

Cooling off in the sprinkler after a run in the hot sun

Edibles:

Caramelized Pumpkin Alligator Stew: protein powder, water, canned pumpkin, spinach, frozen strawberries, ice, xanthan gum, rum extract (tastes like carmel extract)

with toppings of course…

Experience:

Sadly seeing some caged farm animals…

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What’s your favorite farm animal? Sheep are mine…Baah!

Do you ever run through other peoples spinklers? The one in the photograph is mine, but if it’s really hot and it’s mid run, I’ll totally cool off in some one elses!

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Taking a Tumble

My favorite time to go for a run is in the morning. I normally love my weekday morning runs, especially the past few weeks where the days have been shorter so I get out in time to see the glorious sunrise.

Yesterday was a different story. You see, during my run I decided to take a nose dive into the pavement…

When I felt my nose hit the ground I immediately jerked my head back. I must have good reflexes because somehow my face managed to get out unscraped. Unfortunately my elbows, hips, and knees were a different story.

I was surprisingly optimistic after the tumble, and ended up completing my run although it was a good 10 minutes slower then usual.

It all turned out though. Nothing that tea, a neck warmer (perhaps I jerked my head a bit to hard), and yummy food can’t fix.

What’s the point of my little story? We all take tumbles sometimes, whether its a bad grade or getting a cold. The good news is that most tumbles aren’t the end of the world.

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Have you ever taken a tumble on a run? or even just walking? Any exciting weekend plans? 

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Strong is Beautiful

Hello mon petit choux! In case you do don’t know french “mon petit choux” is a term of endearment which translates to “my little cabbages”. I used to use this idiom all the time, because I was in french immersion until grade 4. Unfortunately I never kept up with my french, so I only remember “un petit peu” (a little bit).

But that’s enough french lesson for today, because I have a more important lesson to remind you of…

This weekend I had the opportunity to go to the finalist match for women’s singles tennis Rogers Cup. Serena Williams won after dealing with injury and illness the past year (source), which is quite inspirational for those currently dealing with injuries. I haven’t played much tennis, but I was still thrilled to be there.

The Women’s Tennis Association recently  launched a great campaign “Strong is Beautiful”. Which I didn’t know about until attending the Rogers Cup.

This campaign is such a great reminder that beauty DOES NOT mean being able to count your ribs and have toothpick arms. There are plenty of videos, and beautiful images that you can check out here.

And since you can’t get strong without plenty of food…bring it on!

Breakfast bowl of puffed kamut, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, almond breeze, chia seeds, peanut flour paste, apple, strawberries, cranberries, blueberries, grapefruit, and hemp seeds.

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What languages do you speak? Do you play tennis at all? 

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How Long Does it Take to get Unfit?

The summer’s clock is tic tock-ing away and I’ve been savoring every moment possible. I’ve also been savoring a delicous dinner accompanied with reading.

This is one of my favorite fitness books I have read. The thing I love about it is that it’s organized by questions so you don’t have to read it from cover to cover. You can just skim the table of contents (which you can preview here) and flip to the question you are most eager to read the answer of.

broccoli slaw, cauliflower, greek salsa sauce, canned black beans, egg whites, mushroom, hummus

Since I gave you a sneak peak tease of some of the questions last week, I will satisfy your curiosity and give you the answers!

Is motivation to exercise genetic?

  • “Your genes do play a role in your athletic destiny”
  • “There isn’t an exercise gene”

There is a pumpkin growing in my yard!

How long does it take to get unfit?

  • “The literature on detraining, or loss of fitness, is surprisingly complex, because different adaptions to your muscles, heart, and metabolism fade away at different rates”
  • “As a rough rule of thumb, the evidence suggests that you retain endurance gains for about two weeks without training, but by the time you hit four weeks you’re back to baseline”

Tempeh, berries, and magazine reading

Do spinning classes offer any benefits that I can’t get from biking on my own?

  • “Spinning doesn’t, in fact have any magical effect on oxygen circulation. The results simply indicate that people in an ordinary cycling class managed to reach higher peak intensities than they did during the rigorous progressive exercise tests that doctors and researchers use to measure Vo2max- and much higher intensities than a typical gym user slogging away on a solitary exercise bike.”

Indecisive toppings: laughing cow + lemon curd (favorite!), peanut butter + cottage cheese

Will taking antioxidant vitamins block the health benefits of exercise?

  • “Exercise stimulates the production of free radicals, which is why athletes are often adviced to take extra antioxidant supplements. But exercise itself is also an antioxidant. During exercise, the body learns to gradually produce more and more of its own antioxidants”
  • “One theory now gaining support is that taking extra antioxidants means that your body never gets the opportunity to adapt on its own”


caramel pudding, chia seeds, and apple

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What have you been doing to enjoy the last month of summer? What are your favorite beans?

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Just Me-int

We all have our own preferences right? Our own opinions, enjoyments, and pet peeves?

Take for instance one of my food preferences: I don’t like the chocolate chips in mint ice cream. I just don’t, never have and I never will. Yet I worried that if I posted my recipe for Just Me-int ice cream I would be misunderstood for trying to make the recipe healthier. But that’s not the case it’s catered to Just Me!

Just Me-int

Based of Katie’s Icecream recipe}

  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/16 tsp salt
  • stevia packet
  • 1/2 cup almond breeze
  • 1/4 cup of coconut milk
  • 1/4 tsp pure peppermint extract
Step 1: Mix all ingredients, pour into ice cube tray, and freeze.

Step 2: Pop out and blend in food processor, blender etc (I used magic bullet)
Step 3: Enjoy

It pains me to see others trying to mimic and imitate someone else. However isn’t that how we learn what we truly do love and hate? We see someone else doing it so we give it a try too then we can determine our own opinion. But how will our kids ever learn to form their own opinions if they look up to someone who can’t stand up for what they like? That is why I decided to come up with a few ME things. Which are all things that I can honestly say are my own opinion and not based off anyone elses

  • I don’t like raspberries…the seeds get stuck in my teeth
  • I like love math and school. I just hate the pressure of excelling
  • I would rather spend money on notebooks, pens/pencils, and books over food. (GASP)
  • I prefer running over lifting
  • I am a cat person not a dog person. Sure, I have a dog now, but only because my Dad and sister are allergic to cats. Growing up I asked my parents for a cat pretty much everyday for 5 years straight.

I still love Holly though!

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Your turn, I would love to hear some things that make you YOU! Things that you honestly enjoy from the bottom of your heart! If you made a Just-Me icecream what would the flavor be?

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Fear Not Folks, the E's are Found

My pre-weekend E’s post was missing in action… But fear not folks, they have been found under a layer of family time, reading, workouts and lots of yummy food.

Experiences:

Books books…


and more books.
I got these four books from the used bookstore so they were all good deals as you can see. Which Comes First Cardio or weights answers all your exercise questions with recent research (it was published in 2011). This book deserves a whole post to itself, because it has amazing answers to interesting questions like:

  • Is motivation to exercise genetic?
  • How long does it take to get unfit?
  • Do spinning classes offer any benefits that I can’t get from biking on my own?
  • Will taking antioxidant vitamins block the health benefits of exercise?

Edibles:

All of my favorite weekend eats consisted of very peanut-y items. And this time I really do mean the legume peanut not the comic.

peanut tofu sandwich: marinated thinly sliced tofu chunks in peanut flour paste on toast with a layer of spiced pumpkin

Not your typical toast topping combination but I did enjoy it and will most likely make it again. I also had an old favorite
 tofu stirfry with peanut flour paste

Exercise:

It was drizzling, but I went for a run anyways. A little rain won’t hurt me, and I even engineered a waterproof cover for my ipod.
I put it in a ziploc bag, and plastic wrapped it tight. Worked like a charm!

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What are you currently reading right now? Do you run even if it’s raining a bit?

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