Travel Plans, Races, and Marathon Goal Paces

April 2nd… what?! Where has the time gone? What happened to my last semester of college? I graduate in a month and like… 10 days… when did this happen?? This semester has had plenty of its ups and downs, and most of those downs have just been me being melodramatic and not being able to run.. the ups had definitely out weighed the downs! And I have plenty more to look forward to, I am quite the lucky girl. This April and the next few months are craaayyyyyyzzzyy. Take a look:

April 5th-April 10th: Flying to Colorado with my family to stay in a beautiful condo and ski in Breckenridge and Copper Mountain!

April 14th: NYC to run the More/Fitness Women’s Half Marathon with Steph and Lauren, I am so excited to run through Central Park.

April 18th: Real Estate Awards Banquet, must give big speech to big room of important people. Gah.

April 25th-April 27th: NASHVILLE to visit Becca and run the RnR Nashville Half Marathon together!

May 12th: Ummm Graduate college. NO BIG DEAL. Grandparents are coming, and out for a yummy brunch

May 19th: Ten Penny Ale Shamrock Duathlon with the family! Cant wait to get out on my bike again

May 26th: Burlington for the Vermont City Half Marathon with Sarah!

May 31st: NYC with my Dad’s side of the family for the weekend

June 7th: Moving to TORONTO for 4 months for my internship!!

June 21st: Toronto Triathlon Festival, my first sprint distance triathlon!

August 17th-August 24th: CAPE COD to vacation with the family! We rent a cute little place in Chatham.

September 22nd: RnR Montreal (HALF/FULL?) Marathon!

September 29th: Internship ends, Falmouth for the Zooma Cape Cod Half Marathon

October 1st: ummmm EUROPE!

Holy geeeez. I get exhausted just typing all of this out. Lets hope my hip holds up through all of these races…. I am so pumped for this spring/summer/fall!!

I really want to use the RnR Montreal Marathon as a Boston Qualifier, if I decide to run it. I need to see how my hip does running this summer, and whether or not i have the time to fully train. I reallyyyy want to do it and would absolutely love to run Boston someday, and this race would be a perfect qualifier. I found a pacing plan, and my goal pace would be 8:14 min miles for the race. My tempo runs needs to be around 7:30, and my long runs can be about 9:14-10:25. I am going to work on these paces. I found a great training plan in Women’s Running Magazine as well, but I will not have to worry about starting that until around June 1st. So for now lets just see how the hip does and how my running goes!

I made it out for a gloriously pain free 4.5 mile run this morning. The weather was crisp and cool, but the birds were out and chirping, and it definitely felt like spring. Oh spring weather, please hurry up, I miss you so much.

I had my delicious yogurt parfait for breakfast. Strawberries, Bananas, Kashi go lean crunch, creamy PB, some pear, layer again, and voila! So filling and so delicious.

Here are some pictures from the weekend. On Easter Sunday my family made it out to Mt. Snow to get in some great runs for a few hours in the morning. It was gorgeous spring skiing, and the mountain was empty! This is my kind of Sunday church.

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Connor made a reappearance on the skis, his first after breaking a bone in his arm 7 weeks ago! Dad was peeing his pants thinking he was going to fall down again, but he needed to get some turns in if he is going to try and do well in Colorado this weekend! 20130331-203238.jpg

Left the mountain a little early to come back and make these babies: Its no Easter Sunday and no weekend without some good pancakes topped with peanut butter! I put in blueberries, bananas, and chocolate chips. yummmmm. 20130331-203302.jpgI hope that you had a nice Easter! This week I am playing catch up and planning ahead to have most of my work done before I go to Colorado. Cleo is coming tonight for pizza, wine, and slutty brownie making. Slutty… brownies? What? Don’t worry, ill take pictures 🙂 Stay tuned!

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Buffalo Chicken Pizza & Toronto News!

TODAY IS A GOOD DAY!

  • Crossed a bunch of assignments off of my to-do list
  • Got in a good swim this morning
  • Punta Cana is less than 20 days away
  • I GOT AN OFFER AT AN AWESOME FIRM FOR A TEMPORARY POSITION IN TORONTO THIS SUMMER

It is actually happening. I get to spend the summer in a city, a big city, and not just any city, Toronto! With gorgeous Lake Ontario and awesome shopping and my Nana and Grandad and their beautiful cottage only an hour up north, and all of my cousins so close! This is unreal. I am beyond excited. Next step is to choose which firm… and find housing!!

It is hard to believe that I actually have a plan. Everything is finally starting to fall into place. My schedule is going to be crazy for the rest of the year, but I am so fortunate and so lucky and looking forward to everything on it!!

March: Washington D.C MARATHON, spring break in PUNTA CANA, then wisdom teeth… :/ (it cant all be fun and games)

April: NYC for a half marathon, NASHVILLE to visit Becca

May: GRADUATION, lots of running, a duathlon, Burlington for the VERMONT CITY HALF MARATHON

June: TORONTO

July: TORONTO

August: TORONTO, with a week at CAPE COD for (im sure will be much needed) vacation with the family

September: TORONTO? for most of it?

October: EUROPE WITH CLEO

January 2014: START MY NEW CAREER AT GE

Gahhh life is good. If only my stupid hip flexor would heal so that I can RUN, I would be on cloud 9. Alright I promise I am done bragging now about how awesomely amazing my life is turning out.

Dinner last night is sooo worth mentioning. Stephanie made buffalo chicken pizza! Recipe adapted from our girl Tina’s blog.

Dinner: Pulled Buffalo Chicken Pizza 

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I am pretty sure that Stephanie just combined half a cup of ranch dressing, blue cheese, three cloves of chopped garlic (girl loves garlic) and Franks hot sauce and used that as the base, topped it with the pulled buffalo chicken and topped that with some shredded mozzarella. We rolled out some Trader Joe’s whole wheat pizza dough (love), piled it all on top, and baked for 10-12 minutes! Perfection.  20130226-092706.jpg

——-> This is all that was left of the poor pizza. Food around my roommate does not stand a chance. It barely had time to live its life, the poor piece of yeast. But oh boy, was it delicious.

20130226-151134.jpgI had mine with a side of celery and spinach salad. Stephanie had hers with a side of ranch because she is averse to anything green. and healthy. (jk steph, jk).

Tonight, I am going to try and relax a little, get some laundry done, and call my Mum! I miss her. I am beyond excited to head home this weekend. Have a good night!

 

Unexpected Twists & Turns

New Distance PR Yesterday…

20 miles!! Average pace of 9:14…total time 3:11…. MARATHON here I COME! I am going to try and build up to 22 miles in a few weekends… but this is pretty much the peak of my marathon training at this point, and I feel great!! Hip flexors are sore today but besides that I am good to go, and had a great lifting session with Sarah this morning. I created a new lifting plan… which I will share soon! After the Marathon I am looking forward to concentrating more on lifting and building strength, particularly in my legs. 20130211-131418.jpg

Dinner:

Dinner last night was made with leftover BBQ Pork and Chicken… we made tacos with salsa verde, avocado, guacamole and roasted red peppers yummy… I had some leftover apple and grape sangria as well which went to my head a little too quickly… 20130211-131441.jpg

Grammy snack… ingenious idea of Sarah’s to make dark chocolate covered strawberries. MUST do this again. 20130211-131448.jpg

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It was however, a beautiful day for a run. The sun was shining, it was a balmy 39 degrees, with no wind chill. The roads though, were rather unpleasant. Blizzard Nemo left them slushy and snow filled, and some of the paths were unplowed, which forced us to alter our route a few times and trek up some unpleasant hills. I did not think that Steph was going to make it. But this means that our next long run will feel that much easier, right?? 20130211-131433.jpg

Again… I did not think that Steph was going to make it. Haha she made the run and almost did not make it up the stairs. She was pretty pissed by the time we got to the last mile… So I took off and finished it without her. But I kept trying to remind her, that our actual marathon will not be covered in slush and snow and the roads will not be a sleety mess. And we will not encounter miles on miles of mammoth hills. 20130211-131426.jpg

Its Sunday… so its meal plan day! Actually its Monday… but feels like Sunday. Classes were cancelled again because it is sleeting rain out today, and it is starting to freeze and make the roads treacherous for driving. And campus is still completely covered in 3 feet of snow, they need to find somewhere to put it all!

Whats For Dinner? Week of 2/10: 

  • Monday: Turkey burgers at Sarah’s with spinach, walnut, goat cheese salad 
  • Tuesday: Sushi dinner out
  • Wednesday: CREW Dinner Event
  • Thursday: Off to Vermont… Panini’s/Burgers
  • Friday: Vermont!
  • Saturday: Vermont!

As you can see, I will not be doing much cooking this week! Which is good because I neeeed to start spending less on groceries… and then next weekend I am finally getting up to Vermont for some skiing and snowshoeing! I am so excited. It will be nice to see my family also, I miss them.

Punta Cana countdown…. 34 days!!! This means it is time to start the Punta Cana meltdown…and seriously monitoring myself and making sure I do not overdue it on the sweets and alcohol until then. This is for my new bikinis sake, and my health and nutrition for my marathon. So goals for the next 34 days:

  1. No baked goods (giving this up for Lent anyways…)
  2. Lean meats… ground turkey, canned salmon and tuna
  3. Limit Alcohol intake as much as possible
  4. No Pasta
  5. Push-ups in weight routine
  6. Scrambled eggs for breakfast
  7. Work on pull-up!

Those all seem pretty attainable… with the exception of the pull-up, but im going to keep doing the assisted pull-up machine and hopefully a real one will come out of that soon! I want to join a CrossFit box SO bad so that I can train to do one… maybe this summer, when I have the time.

I will do a post with my new Triceps, Biceps, and Shoulders weight day routine! Stay dry all you east coasters!

Unexpected Breath of Fresh Air

Argus Exam Postponed. ——–> Good News… Bad News…. unclear at the moment. All I know is that now I have a free night spread out ahead of me and I really need to stop staring at textbooks or a computer screen, my head is going to implode. So what is there to do….

I need some objectives for this weekend to keep me in line and focused.

WEEKEND:

  • Thursday night shambles
  • Friday Cardo Express
  • Red Wine, make Sweet Baby Cheesus…. http://www.thelondoner.me/2013/02/sweet-baby-cheesus.html —–> (be careful clicking on that link, you will regret it, im telling you)
  • Girls Night
  • Run 20 MILES. gahhh.
  • Try not lose power in Nor Easter Nemo thats headed our way
  • If we get snowed in, enjoy it.
  • Do…. some… homework
  • Crockpot Pulled Buffalo Chicken!

Sounds like a good weekend to me! I only have tonight, a 6 mile run in the morning, class, and a RE Society meeting waiting between me and this weekend. Lets get on with it!

But first we neeeed to recap this dinner from tonight:

Twice Baked Sweet Potato (note to self… bake sweet potato in oven for 35 min first)

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We finally made beef burgers! Yummy beefy goodness… gotta get that iron! With tomatilla salsa, avocado, tomato, and fresh mozz. 20130206-193615.jpg

Woof.

Documented: First weekend back of my last semester of college. ever. Spring semester 2013. Heavenly, fluffy and syrupy blueberry and apple oatmeal pancake breakfast at the Wooden Spoon with Chelsea this morning. Cross that one off the semester to-do list. Drowned my hangover in coffee and soaked up any excess sugar cookie shots still swimming in my liver. Shambles. A drunken weekend. Time to get my life back in order. Starting with reorganizing this blog!

Off to shop with the best friend for Sarah’s birthday. Definitely sober driving it tonight… ill leave you with a mouthwatering picture of said gorgeous pancakes.

pancakes

and my girls. It was a good night.

girls

Trader Joe’s and diet staples

Lets start off with my Sunday night. Since I have next to no friends over here in Albany it was a pretty lonely day, since I decided to stay here for the weekend. Last night consisted of a good dinner, some pre mixed margarita and a chick flick.

Dinner:

I promise that the food item on the right of my plate is cooked and not some bloody slab of road kill that I found on the side of the street. It is grilled chicken with this spicy tomato sauce that my mom brought from Canada, it is very tasty, mixed with some black olives. Again, that is not pieces of dirt and animal flesh. On the side I have some sweet potato wedges with unpictured peanut butter, which are one of my most favorite food items in this universe. And that was a great grammatically correct sentence. The sweet potato wedges are great, I always make a huge batch and then eat them cold for lunch the next day, which is what I did today. With either almond butter or PB!

Sweet Potato Wedges:

  1. Scrub sweet potatoes
  2. Cut sweet potatoes into wedge shapes
  3. Toss into large Ziploc bag, with olive oil, sea salt, cumin, and this time I used some paprika
  4. Close bag, throw and toss bag around, maybe chuck it at someone
  5. Line baking sheet with tin foil, place marinated wedges on sheet, bake at 450 degrees for around 30 min

Viola! Delicious.

I did my Nike Training App this morning. Lots of burpees, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, froggers, planks, lunges. I felt my behind going up the stairs of my apartment tonight!

Breakfast:

Toasted wheat sandwich thin, toasted in my oven, because I am a poor intern too cheap for a toaster. Topped with almond butter, strawberries, and raspberries. Almond butter and raspberries is seriously one of the best combinations ever. Along with sweet potatoes. And a lot of other things.

Today was an uneventful day at the internship, just preparing for the big final presentation on Wednesday, gah! Oh I did burn my hand on the toaster oven, but I will spare you the picture I took of it.  I have to practice my presentation tonight… but soon it will all be over and I will be on the beach with my family. Ahhh I cannot wait.

After work I ran some errands, which included Fleet Feet to drool over the Nike Lunarglide+ 4 that I neeeed to buy. And Trader Joe’s finally! It just opened on Friday so it was packed, and they were in short supply of a lot of items. It is amazing how popular of a place that is. I did not find the Peanut dressing, or the 21 Seasoning Salute, but I did score this booty:

Whole Wheat wraps, Sea Salt, Peanut Butter cups, and Sesame Soy Ginger Vinaigrette.

Those peanut butter cups are amazing, and I wanted to buy a loaf of their fresh bread, but I am trying to cut back on the amount of carbs I eat in my diet. I want them to come from sources such as fruit and veggies, and less from bread and starches. Speaking of food in diets, I was thinking this morning about my favorite foods (no surprise there, that topic tends to be on my mind almost 78% of any given day) and I realized that I eat pretty much the same standard foods every week. I have especially noticed this since I started doing my own grocery shopping this summer. I heard that it is best to only stick to the perimeter of any grocery store when your shopping, because thats where all the whole, healthy and unprocessed foods are located. And turns out, I barely wander down the aisles at all. In fact, the only reason I did yesterday was for a bottle of seltzer water. Just because I feel like torturing you and talking more about my favorite foods, here is the list of my most common diet staples (foods that I must have-cannot-live-without every week): 

  • Bananas
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Oatmeal
  • Nut butters
  • Iced coffee
  • Soy/Almond/Coconut milk
  • Asparagus
  • Hummus
  • Tomatoes
  • Sauvignon blanc
  • Avocados
  • Berries (Rasp, Blue, Straw)
  • Greek yogurt
  • Spinach
  • Salmon
  • Brownies
  • Chicken
  • Almonds
  • Kashi Go Lean Crunch
  • Feta/goat cheese
  • Dark chocolate covered almonds

And thats pretty much it! I’m pretty simple right? Sometimes there could be random obsessions on there, like grapes, peaches, kiwis, cherries, chocolate cake, cupcakes, pizza, etc… but those are the foods I find myself buying every week and always craving! I have made myself into a very healthy eater. I don’t even crave pasta anymore! A big, steamy, meaty and creamy bowl of pasta used to be one of my favorite things in the world, along with a fresh chunk of bread and dipping oil, but now that just sounds scary. I still enjoy a good Italian dinner, but maybe once a month. Random picture from my drive home:

I got stuck at a red light where the sun was so bright that the glare made me unable to see when it was going to turn green, so I had to hang my head out the window for a bit. And this is a longgg light. I got a few inquiring looks from drive-bys. Dinner tonight was Salmon with feta cheese, cherry tomatoes and asparagus, wrapped in tin foil and baked in the oven at 400 for about 20 min. I might turn into a salmon soon with all that I have consumed lately. Its so good and so easy!

Dinner:

Tomorrow morning I have a 4 mile run planned and a reader request! What’s that you say? You have readers? Yes my friends, I received a reader request. Well she is one of my best friends and my very first college roommate and I basically force her to read my blog, but she is a nutrition nut like me and suggested I write about how to get that lunchtime “crunch” without having to resort to packaged foods like chips and pretzels! And she thinks that fruit with lunch is weird… which is just crazy because it is fresh and juicy and sweet and satisfies my sweet tooth and my need for an after lunch dessert 🙂 But I will humor her and come up with some ideas for tomorrow! And she better comment… if she is reading this.. which she will be because I will be forcing her to. Alright, have a great night people!

What are the main staples you find in your diet? Do we have any in common? 

If you like salmon, how do you cook it? 

What is your favorite Trader Joe’s item? 

Eggs and foods for runners

Quote of the day:

“No candy, no cake, no donuts, no muffins, no white bread, no chips, no fast food, no pastries, no ice cream. Do it for 21 days = results.”

I am trying this. That is, after I finish this premixed Jose Cuervo lime margarita… do chocolate covered almonds count as candy? I just read in Women’s Health magazine that chocolate eaters weigh less…

I made it out for my 5 mile run today. Right before I read the email from my Dad saying that he hopes I am not being crazy and running in the heat/humidity today after my crazy day yesterday… and it was tough run. But I was expecting it to be tough, so it all worked out, and I felt so good after I did it. Gotta love those endorphins. I was in kind of a bum mood and it instantly cheered me right up. Here are the splits:

  • Mile 1: 8:28
  • Mile 2: 8:35
  • Mile 3: 8:31
  • Mile 4: 8:17
  • Mile 5: 8:13 —->where did this random speed demon come from?

Average pace: 8:23. Not too shabby for running 12 miles and biking 20 the day before.

Afterwards I went grocery shopping and decided I was craving eggs so I made this lunch:

Scrambled eggs with feta, spinach, and avocado on a wheat thin. With some juicy strawberries on the side. I have been trying to incorporate more eggs in my diet lately, and I have found that they are especially delicious scrambled with feta cheese and almond milk. The almond milk makes them soo creamy. Try it! Eggs are one of the best foods for runners. Here’s why:

  1. High quality, complete, source of protein. One egg supplies about 10% of your daily protein need. They are great muscle repair food after a long run or tempo workout.
  2. One of the best sources of choline, a nutrient that helps keep the body’s circulatory system clear of compounds that would cause inflammation, which can lead to muscle swelling.
  3. Tons of bone-building Vitamin D. We runners need strong bones. 
  4. Contains lutein, a pigment required for healthy eyes.

Other superstar foods for runners:

  • Almonds
  • Salmon
  • Spinach
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Chicken
  • Berries
  • Dark chocolate ——>(hey i answered my own question!)
  • Low-fat yogurt

Good thing all of these play a part in my diet! Topic of discussion: Calorie intake. I have been tracking my calories on myfitnesspal for 214 days now. It has become a part of my daily routine, and I feel weird and like I am forgetting something when I am unable to do it. It takes 3 weeks for something to become a habit right? Well this has definitely become a habit… possibly a mini obsession. But, it has helped me lost 14 pounds so I am going to stick with it for as long as I can. I recently changed it to losing 1 pound per week instead of 1/2 a pound, and my daily caloric intake is set at 1460. Do you think this is too low? I find it very hard, near impossible, to stay under this unless I have a big workout that day, which adds to your allowable number of calories. I am going to keep testing it out, see what happens.

I am grilling chicken and baking some sweet potato wedges (yumm) for dinner tonight, and I rented a girly chick flick to keep me company. Oh how I wish I had my adorable pug already to keep me company. I say this over and over again, but the first thing I do once I graduate college and have my very own place is finding a pug rescue and adopting my new best friend.

Do you count calories? If so, how many calories do you consume in a day?

What is your favorite way to cook eggs?