Weekend Roundup

Guess who’s back, back again, Monday’s back, tell a friend…sorry, had to! 🙂 Time for a whole new week of opportunities to be the best me (and you)!

My hubby and I had a great weekend participating in the Brewers 10k run in Milwaukee. Look for the recap tomorrow, but let’s just tease it by saying we got to run on the field of Miller Park for the last .5 mile. #awesomesauce

After I uploaded my race information on Garmin Connect this weekend, I noticed that I have run 176 miles since July 18th. I’ve really surprised myself this year. So proud!

brewerscollageI’m sure you saw “National Coffee Day” floating around the twitter world on Sunday.  Before I joined twitter, I likely would’ve never heard of this “day.” I happened to stop at Dunkin Donuts on our way to Milwaukee Friday and saw the display for K-Cups. I drink K-Cups regularly, usually one a day, so when I saw $7.99 for a pack of K-Cups on sale for “National Coffee Day” I grabbed some. The manager mentioned they don’t offer this kind of deal even for Black Friday. Score! I have yet to try their pumpkin spice K-Cup, but I bet it’s just as good (if not better) than Green Mountain’s version.

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Like most bloggers, I’m a fall/pumpkin girl all the way. On our way back from Milwaukee on Saturday we stopped at the Outlet Mall in Oshkosh. One of my favorite stores there is Le Gourmet Chef because hello, they have so many samples to try! I found a little niche of “all things pumpkin” including this Spiced Maple Pumpkin Dip. The clerk recommended spreading the dip on english muffins or mixing it in greek yogurt with granola. We picked up cinnamon honey pretzels to dip with it and let me tell you, amazing.

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One of my first blog posts was a DIY race medal holder (pictured below, right). Confession: I just hung it up yesterday. I picked up a Half Marathon poster last weekend at the Fox Cities Marathon expo (made by BlueSkyRun) and they naturally make perfect wall partners. So, where did I decide to hang them? Right in my dining room, of course! Our house has an open concept so I can also see them from our living room and kitchen. They’re such great reminders of our accomplishments. Love them 🙂

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Hope you had a great weekend! Stay tuned for my Brewers 10k recap tomorrow! Enjoy your week and remember every day is a new day!

How did your run go this weekend? Anyone else race? What’s your favorite kind of K-Cup?

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Fox Cities Half Marathon Recap Part 1

There is so much to awesome running stuff to share that I am breaking up the weekend into two posts!

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Last Sunday my hubby and I ran the Fox Cities half marathon in Appleton, WI. This was our second half marathon, the first being Fox Cities half marathon ’12. It was an exciting, exhilarating experience that I will not soon forget. I had a personal best of 2:02:46 which was 52 minutes faster than last year (yep, it was that bad). What made the difference this year was figuring out the puzzle that is my digestive system. I FINALLY feel like I have control over my body and how I feel during running. Being regular has helped stave off stomach pains and the need for a restroom stop during the run. After the run my stomach felt great! I believe it was a combination of eating and hydrating properly before and during the run that led to my success.

The day before the race hubby and I picked up our packets and checked out the expo.

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Some of the notable booths included a pole dancing exercise program (pole and everything…), Bondibands headbands, Fleet Feet, Run Away Shoes, and Blue Sky Run. Blue Sky Run is a relatively new company that sells headbands, posters, jewelry, and medal hangers related to running. I love the half marathon word collage posters they put together. They will even create a personalized poster with your race/finishing time! Check out the poster I picked up at the expo here.

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I stopped at the a chiropractor booth to check the alignment of my spine. Apparently, the bones in my neck are misaligned (?). Not sure if I agree with that. I also checked out “the stick” roller which felt really good on my calves.

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The night before the race I laid out all the running gear I needed. I ate a stir fry of chicken & veggies over spinach and quinoa for dinner. I don’t believe in consuming large amounts of pasta and meatballs the night before. That just doesn’t work for me. The thought alone would slow me down on race day. I ate something I would normally eat to ensure no “surprises” on race day. Do what works for you, right?

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One of my favorite parts of race morning is the excitement from my husband. He blasts “pump up” music at 5am and it really does help wake me up and get me ready to run! The morning was a cold one is the low 40s, so I kept my jacket on as long as I could. The atmosphere was electric and corrals were packed. 5,000 fellow runners took to the roads on Sunday in either the half marathon, full marathon, or relay.

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It was an absolute beautiful morning with blasting sunshine coming over the horizon (didn’t wear my sunglasses=newbie mistake). I reminded myself frequently that I put in the training and did everything I could have done to physically and mentally prepare. The community support for this race is amazing, with people lined on almost every street. It makes a huge difference to hear someone call out your name with encouragement!

I will be recapping the actual running in an upcoming post. Stay tuned, friends! 🙂

What’s your favorite running mantra? What’s your perfect race temperature? 

WIAW: Crabby Patties, PSC, & Hi I’m Skinny

Happy Wednesday! I’m excited to share my weekly eats with you via What I Ate Wednesday at Peas and Crayons! But first, cute puppy alert!

2013-09-15 13.31.21Meet Murphy. He’s a year and a half now and just brightens any less than stellar day I have. I love coming home to him. He’s always so excited to see us. It’s hard to leave that face in the morning, let me tell you.2013-09-15 14.34.28We also like to cuddle. Errr, I like to lay on him.

2013-09-09 14.58.38And we may or may not treat him like our child. I think my hubby’s trying to tell me something….

Yep, those boys are all mine. And no, you can’t steal either one.

On to the eats for this week.

I’m definitely a lover of pumpkin, however, I’m not a fan of the pumpkin spiced latte. I tried one a few years ago from Starbucks and was really disappointed with the taste. Blah. I tried it mainly because I love pumpkin spice coffee k-cups from Green Mountain. This weekend I busted out PSC (can I make that an acronym?) and it was just as delicious as I remember. I bought a big box off Amazon last year because I knew it would be gone from the store before I knew it. I’m glad I did!

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One of my favorite snacks lately has been Hi I’m Skinny Sticks in the sweet potato variety. They are crunchy, sweet, and full of cinnamon flavor. My hubby’s favorite kind is the Multigrain Sweet Onion. There’s a lot more to them than some of those “veggie” sticks I’ve seen at the grocery store.

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When I lived in Stevens Point, my grad school town, one of my favorite restaurants was the Wooden Chair. They make a delicious opened face crab sandwich called the “Crabby Guy” on an english muffin. I’ve recreated my own version which I’ve deemed “crabby patties“. It’s one of those meals I forget about for a while and then make all the time once I remember how good it is!

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Some dinners don’t always look the prettiest, but are very tasty. I picked up fresh produce at the farmer’s market this weekend, including cucumbers and red peppers. We also received veggies from family/friends. So, since I’m getting better at actually eating all the produce in my fridge, I threw together a chicken sausage stir fry for dinner.

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It included carrots, red and green pepper, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, and spinach artichoke chicken sausages. To plate it, I laid down a bed of spinach and red quinoa and topped it with the chicken stir fry. I mixed in a wedge of Laughing Cow White Cheddar. Omg guys, it’s sooo good. Great way to use up my veggies!

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Sad news…I’m getting to the end of my pumpkin butter I bought in Door County. I need to start checking pinterest for some DIY pumpkin butter recipes. Hopefully it will be as good as the kind I bought!

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Have a great Wednesday! I’m happy it’s Wednesday because that means only 4 more days til my half marathon! 🙂

What’s the best pinterest recipe you’ve discovered? Do you have a hard time leaving your pet during the day?

WIAW #2

Hope you’re off to wonderful Wednesday! I’ve made the transition back to work and I’m still alive! I am the kind of person who loves and needs a consistent routine, so going back to work isn’t so bad. It has been great to see all my coworkers again. I work with some amazing people who truly care about the success and well being of the kids in their class. Woohoo for teachers!!

Today’s post is What I Ate Wednesday numero dos. Thanks again to Jenn at Peas and Crayons for hosting!

First up, not an eat, but a drink. I am loving Dunkin Donuts iced coffee lately. I am a iced coffee “newbie” so I’m still unsure exactly how to order it (does it or does it not automatically come with skim milk?), but it usually turns out okay. I’d rather drink an iced coffee later in the day than hot coffee. And every time I go there it’s $0.99! Score!

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My husband was actually the one to research and buy a dehydrator for us. I was skeptical at first. I’ve bought gadgets/small appliances and then never used them. I hate to have things in the cupboards just taking up room. I am happy to report I have been loving our dehydrator! It’s so easy to use. My favorite foods to dehydrate are zucchini, bananas, strawberries, and apples. Dehydrated fruit is so easy to pack up and travel with. I’ve been eating banana and apple chips on their own, in oatmeal, and on top of toast.

2013-08-26 15.00.232013-08-26 20.06.48I have been craving fresh, crisp salads lately. Sometimes I find that I’m thirsty and the water in the veggies helps to quench my thirst (and water does too :)). I love the versatility of salads and I usually just grab whatever veggies are currently in my fridge. Veggies in this salad included grilled and marinated portabella mushrooms, hard boiled egg, cucumber, shredded carrots, sliced almonds, and lots ‘o spinach. I could seriously eat this every night.

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Isn’t it pretty?

I’m always up for trying a new recipe. In the blogosphere overnight oats are very popular. I tried them a while back with blah results. I’ve always been a hot oatmeal kind of girl. Because I was in need of some inspiration in the kitchen and was looking to try something different, I gave overnight oats another shot. I tweaked this recipe from Caffeinated Runner.

Overnight Oats

  • 1/3 cup of oatmeal
  • 1 container Activia Blueberry Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 TB chia seeds
  • 1/2 Clif bar
  • Blueberries
  • Scoop of peanut butter

Combine the oatmeal, yogurt, and chia seeds in a container and let sit overnight. In the morning add blueberries, peanut butter, and top with a crushed Clif bar.

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I used 1/2 cup of oats and it was a little dry. Did it completely change me over to cold oats? Nope, but it wasn’t bad and I’d try some variation of it again. It’s nice to change things up and eat something cold when it’s so hot and humid out right now!

What have you been eating? Any new, easy recipes I should know about? I’ve been stuck in a breakfast rut lately…help please. 🙂