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August 31, 2011

pace

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about my running pace recently.  After deciding to forego my longer runs to focus on my form, I have seen a dramatic increase in my pace (specifically on my Saturday 5k runs + 5k walk back).  The first weekend doing this workout I finished in 30:00 – over a minute and a half faster than my previous pr on my Nike+, and a whopping 4:30+ minutes less than my 5k pace at my one and only 5k race this past fall.  I was shocked at my ability – and this past weekend?  I blew 30:00 out of the water with under 28:30!.

Granted, this is not a speedy speed for a lot of runners, but it is for me.  I can tell that I am working harder running the faster speeds, but it helps knowing I only have a little over 3 miles to keep it up.  I remember I used to wish I could run 3 miles even just last summer – and I was unable to.  And now I am running the entire thing and running it fast!  It still shocks and amazes me of what our bodies are capable of.

Now, speaking of capabilities, I am not currently capable of running a 1/2 marathon.  Well, I might be, but it wouldn’t be pretty.  Good thing I have until January for my first at Walt Disney World!  (By the way, check out my guest post on Healthy Disney today!).  Since this is my first 1/2 marathon, I know I should not have a set goal time in mind, but that’s not always how I work.  I am usually competitive and it frustrates me that even though I want to be competitive at running – I will never be a great runner.  I’ll get over it… maybe.

Kinley decided to sign up for the Clif Bar Pace Team for the Disney race – to see what it would be like with someone else pacing you rather than having to think about it yourself.  Well, even though I signed up for a slower pace time, I decided I would contemplate running with a pace team as well.  What’s really nice about the Clif Bar Pace Team is that it is FREE, and it has absolutely no obligation – meaning if I didn’t want to run with them come race day, I wouldn’t have to.  I could also switch my pace group I was running with the day of the expo in case I find my speedy marathon legs within the next few months.

Something else that’s awesome about the Clif Bar Pace Team??  They send you FREE products to try and I just to happened to get my first on Monday!

It included a Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Clif Bar, a Raspberry Clif Shot, and a Cran-Razz Clif Block.  Can’t wait to start my training and increase my distance so I need these!  Speaking of training – I should probably think of what training plan I’m going to do and see when I’ll need to start!

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June 11, 2011

these are a few of my favorite things

Guest Post by Kinley Weaver, Sister

And no, I promise I won’t break out into song and start singing songs from the Sound of Music (hear raindrops on roses and wiskers on kittens…), but I am pretty sure my mom has a nice Beta tape with me singing that in church when I was about 4, so seek her out if you really want to hear it :D.

But anyways, as you read this, Kels and I will be partaking in one of my favorite things, refueling after a long run!  But I am here today to offer a guest post on another of my favorite items in the world… hummus!

I have no recollection of when my love for hummus started, but I think it is safe to say we have been tight for the last 10+ years ;).  If any resturant we go to has hummus, it’s a pretty safe bet that I WILL be ordering that hummus as either an appetizer or just not even pretending and scarfing it down for my main meal.  But despite my love for homemade hummus/restaurant made hummus, I have never really found a packaged store-bought hummus that satisfies my criteria for good hummus!  Maybe it has something to do with the overprocessessyness of it and how long it sits on the shelves??  Who knows, but since I currently cannot live without hummus at least once per week, I have had to create a recipe of my own that I can whip up and chow down on, so here it is!

Don’t worry, I don’t eat THAT much hummus in a week, I used this to make enough (and then some) hummus for the Sissy’s grad party a few weeks back.

Ingredients

  • 1 16 oz can organic garbanzo beans (read the label and make sure they are not putting anything weird in the can as you are going to need the gravy), peeled or 2 cups cooked garbanzo beans (from dried), peeled
  • 1/4 cup reserved liquid from the garbanzo bean can or if using homemade, reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid
  • Juice of 1/2 of a lemon or 1-2T lemon juice
  • 1/4-3/4 tsp cumin (the more cumin, the more bite this will have. I like it somewhere in the heavy 1/2 tsp range)
  • 1/2 Tbsp garlic powder (can go for more or less, you can also use fresh garlic but I really HATE the smell and taste of raw garlic so I much prefer the powder)
  • 1-2 Tbsp Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Additional salt to taste

Plus, if you are feeling fancy, any mix in ideas you want to try i.e. olives, carmelized onions, sun dried tomatos, pesto, other spices/herbs, etc (I am currently a big fan of adding 1/2 Tbsp honey and 1/2 tsp curry powder – skip the cumin in this one)

Now on to the annoying part,

Step 1: Peeling the banzos!

This may seem super tedious and rather annoying and if you are not as commited to hummus as I am, an optional step that CAN be skipped, but I am not going to do that because the end result is sooooo much better when you do this!  Drain and rinse your beans and set yourself up with the empty can and a bowl.  Take each bean and remove the little outer skin that surrounds the meat by gently pinching/rolling the bean between your fingers.  You will probably even see a few loose “skins” in your bowl if you have rinsed your beans thoroughly.  Place your “skins” in the empty can and your “meat” in the bowl.  Once this very annoying but very crucial (to me) step is completed, you are on to…

Step 2: Make the hummus base!  Add the peeled beans, reserved liquid, lemon juice, cumin and garlic powder to your food processessor.  Blend for a good minute, scrapping the sides down 2-3 times. You will know you are ready for step 3 when you no longer see any chunks in your hummus.

Step 3: Emulsify!  I suppose if you were really not into having a little healthy fat in your diet, you could stop right here and eat away, but I really love the extra creamyness and flavor adding a little oil brings.  (Plus, I prefer to skip the tahini in my base recipe to reduce the extra fat as I find it does not add enough flavor/texture for me to shell out $6+ for a container of it! – so this recipe is already a bit healthier than most).  Be ready to turn your processor on and leave it on for this step.  I normally measure out my oil in a little dish and have it ready to pour.  Then, turn on the machine and slowly drizzle your oil down the feed chute of your food processor until you can tell the hummus has emulsified and has creamed and whipped up.  I normally let this go about another minute or so.  If will be visibly fluffy if you have done this correctly :D.

Step 4: Try really hard not to eat this all in one sitting, your family members will thank you!  Also, note to self, keep mints in your drawer at work so all your co-workers are not forced to smell your stanky garlic breath EVERY day at work!

As for dippers, my current favorites are tortilla chips, carrots, green peppers, spoons, broccoli and cucumbers. I also am quite found of hummus sandwiches, especially hummus, broccoli and tempeh sandwiches.  (Please don’t judge until you try!  But I am currently experimenting with a wheat free diet for awhile so this will have to be cleared off the menu plan for the time being :( ).  Hummus also makes a delicious salad dressing or topper for pretty much any meal!  So I hope now you don’t think me completely insane for ranting on and on about a bean dip, but once you try this, you probably will want to as well!

And did I forget to mention that my post-race refueling is hopefully including PUMPKIN HUMMUS??? Excited!!!

June 8, 2011

what i ate wednesday #3

WIAW is making weeks go WAY too fast… haha.  It seems like I was just eating last week’s food!  Unfortunately, storms were in the forecast throughout the day today so my pictures had to be taken inside – so please forgive their darkness!  I tried to find all of the natural light I could get ;).

Breakfast:

OIAJ “Oatmeal in a Jar”

The creamy and chunky peanut butter jars from the PB&J Bar were almost gone, so Kinley and I both got to have our oatmeal in one!  Hers in the creamy jar, mine in the chunky.  This is seriously the most delicious thing ever.  Steel-cut oats with chia and a cut-up banana mixed in after cooking, topped with Quinoa Granola (Kinley made this, I’ll see if she wants to do a guest post on it in the near future, or make a batch myself ;) ).

I also had a glass of Green Plant Juice from Trader Joe’s.  As long as you can get over drinking the color, you can only taste the fruit juices in it and get all of the added benefits of green superfoods!

Mid-Morning Snack:

Fuji Apple

Lunch:

Leftover Mexican Lime Millet Succotash

Baby Carrots + Smoothie (made this one but subbed unsweetened chocolate almond milk + added spinach)

Afternoon Snack:

Peanut Butter & Jelly Lärabar and an Orange

Dinner:

Potato and Kale Enchiladas from the Veganomicon cookbook and Trader Joe’s Refried Beans

Not only was my day entirely dairy-free, it was completely wheat/gluten free as well!  Kind of a mexican-inspired lunch and dinner combo, but they both tasted entirely different – and really, there’s nothing wrong with too much mexican food, right?