Books and Bowls

Look what I found!

 

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While out running errands on Friday, I spotted Caitlin’s book: Operation Beautiful! I’m pretty sure I screamed when I saw this sitting on the shelf, “MY BFF wrote this!”

 

I started reading the first chapter, and so far it is absolutely amazing. I am so proud of my friend for her accomplishments, and for continuing to inspire others. I can’t wait to read more!

 

The book officially comes out on August 3, but for some reason I was able to find it early at Borders.

 

 

Breakfast:

 

On Friday morning, I treated myself to a new kind of breakfast. I was out of fresh fruit (only frozen) and decided to try something new.

 

Smoothie in a bowl + Cereal:

 

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In a blender, I combined:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 5 frozen strawberries

 

On top, I added some Kashi Crisp cereal. Light, refreshing, cold, and crunchy. What could possibly be a better summer combination?

 

I loved it so much, that I tried another version of the smoothie for dessert last night: with white chocolate chips! It was an extremely healthy ice-cream treat alternative.

 

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Have you tried a smoothie in a bowl? What would be your choice of toppings?

❤ MegaNerd

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The Fiddler’s Green

Even though I have lived in Orlando for 5 years, I’m always discovering places I haven’t been before!

 

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Debbie and Mike have been talking about the Fiddler’s Green Irish Pub pretty much since I have known them! Since they are on vacation and have limited time in Orlando, I let them decide what things they missed the most, and the Irish pub was number one on the list!

 

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I started out with a Shocktop Beer.

 

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Mike ordered appetizers for the table: Potato Pancakes with cheddar, and wings!

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I haven’t ever tried a potato pancake before, but to me it just tasted like hashbrowns in a new form.

 

For dinner, I ordered a Burger! I haven’t had one since my post-marathon meal and thought it sounded good for some odd reason. I eat beef probably only once a year because I don’t like it all that much.

 

This burger was HUGE! As in… I could have easily split this burger with my girl friends Debbie and Joanna. We each ordered one and ate less than half.

 

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It was a really fun place to hang out!

 

After dinner, we went to Jeremiah’s Italian Ice for some Cake Batter flavored ice, but my camera died! I had to take a picture with my iPhone, but it didn’t turn out since it was dark outside.

 

Just know that it was delicious!

 

I went to bed with a bit of a tummy ache. My stomach isn’t used to eating so much grease in one sitting! YIKES! I had to head to bed early because I was almost doubled over. 😦

 

 

Debbie and I woke up before the boys got out of bed to meet her friend Joanna for a run. Luckily, I was feeling much better when I got up and was able to complete a 4.0 mile run in 42:51.

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Debbie and I were talking about how this run, which is now considered moderately tough, used to be soooo easy for us. It’s amazing how marathon training skews your perception of what is easy!

 

I was excited to serve Debbie my favorite breakfast ever:

 

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Kashi heart to heart, peanut butter, banana, and milk.

 

YUM!

 

We are off to tackle our day. Some more friends are flying in tonight, and I’m going to have six guests in my one bedroom 600 square feet apartment… it’s going to be crowded but fun!

 

❤ MegaNerd

Just Another Morning

It’s been a week since my last run.

 

I haven’t felt much motivation to run lately, mostly because it’s hot and I can’t really run very far. This morning, I decided to take a new approach to the way I think about running: Since it is just too hot, I’m just going to run short distances for fun, with no pressure of time or mileage.

 

My run was much more enjoyable without my watch as a constant reminder or what little distance I have run. It was nice. 😀

 

I came back to a quick breakfast.

 

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I had a whole grain English muffin with Almond Butter…

 

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…plus a grapefruit.

 

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I love eating fresh fruit in the morning! I usually stick it in the freezer while I am in the shower so that it will be nice and cold when it’s time to eat. So refreshing!

 

Lunch

I am bringing leftovers to work for lunch today. I’ve been getting really bad about:

1. Eating out

2. Eating frozen dinners

3. Snacking on office junk and not actually eating a well-rounded meal.

 

Oops.

 

I’m actually really excited about today’s lunch!

 

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Leftover Mom’s recipe black beans ( I really, really, really need this recipe!), whole grain brown rice, and broccoli.

 

I also have a couple snacks packed including an apple, banana, granola bar, and yogurt. I have class until 7:30pm and I need lots of stuff to hold me over!

 

Off to work I go! I am grateful that I have a job, even if it is temporary.

 

❤ MegaNerd

Veggies at Every Meal

Dinner last night was quick and easy!

 

I worked both jobs yesterday, so I was out from 8am to 8pm! I came home from work and whipped up the first thing that came to mind.

 

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I steamed broccoli, zucchini, and yellow squash in a bowl. I then topped it with half a cup of marinara sauce, and white beans. I added string cheese to the top and micro-waved it to melt it. YUM!

 

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Quick and easy is where it’s at! I even made extra to take to lunch later in the week.

 

This morning I was planning on going to the gym, but decided I needed the extra sleep. I am working tons of hours this week and have a bike ride planned with Mark and Kelly this afternoon. There’s always tomorrow morning! 😉

 

I thoroughly enjoyed my extra hour of sleep…and not having to pack breakfast. Packing multiple meals can be quite annoying.

 

After seeing Caitlin add sweet potatoes to her breakfast, I knew I had to try it! I was intrigued with the concept.

 

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I used her combo, but added honey instead of maple syrup because I didn’t have any.

 

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This strange breakfast included:

  • 1/3 of a huge sweet potato, cold
  • pecans
  • 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • plain chobani
  • flax
  • honey

 

Who knew veggies went with oatmeal?

 

It tasted fine, but the texture was strange to me. I haven’t ever eaten uncooked oatmeal, so I think that’s what was throwing me off. By the end of the bowl, I felt like I was choking down the oatmeal. I ended up picking out most of the potato and pecans and left behind some oatmeal. Whoops!

 

I’m off to work! I have Part 2 of my whitewater recap set to publish this afternoon, so be sure to check back!

 

❤ MegaNerd

In Need of Motivation

It’s Friday, everyone’s favorite day of the week!

 

I think I make French Toast every Friday. It’s becoming a tradition!

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I have a ridiculous amount of berries in my fridge. I bought 4 for $5 strawberries and a costco sized blackberry container. I need to figure out a way to use all these berries before they go off!

 

Is it possible to bake with fresh berries?! It has to be.

 

Anyways, I took about a cup of berries and topped them with a teaspoon of sugar in a bowl. I then heated it for 1 minute. It made an excellent addition to my french toast, and I only needed a tiny bit of syrup to make it sweet!

 

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SO GOOD!

 

Motivation

Coming back from injury can be tough. Ok, let’s be real… it sucks. It is really hard to think that “x amount of time ago” I was in WAY better shape. Now it hurts just thinking about going that far.

 

I sometimes feel so unmotivated to even start back again, because I feel like I am starting from scratch. I basically have no running endurance anymore, I have gained a bit of extra weight from my decreased activity, etc.

 

Last night, I got to thinking about what motivated me to run in the first place. Obviously, I am not starting COMPLETELY over, and I have my past accomplishments to remind me of what I am capable of.

I made a list of thoughts that will motivate and encourage me to get back out and run–even if that means just one or two miles.

 

  • Keep in mind what I know I am capable of!

 

  • Be excited for a new challenge. Being is beginner is kind of fun!

 

  • Even though I haven’t been running, I’ve been keeping my heart strong with biking. Cross training is so important! Without my injury, I may have never done it!

 

  • Running is not everything. It is part of who I am but it is not everything.

 

  • Start slow, and enjoy it! There is no need to rush back into it. That’s how injuries happen!

 

  • Stop comparing your “now” self to your “then-in-running-shape” self. It takes time to get back there.

 

  • Make goals for where I am today. Three months ago, before I was injured, 3 miles was an “easy” day. That is more of  a “long run” now.  My goal is to make 3.0 miles feel “easy” again.

 

This list is sort of for myself, but I hope that it will benefit other injured runners!

 

Don’t give up!

 

 

❤ MegaNerd

Packing My Bag

I had great plans on waking up early this morning and hitting the gym before work. However, I slept right through the alarm. 😦

 

I’m packing my gym bag, and going straight from work! If I stop at home (which is out of the way) I know that I won’t end up going. 

 

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This morning, I had time to make a decent breakfast. I have a good amount of food here in the apartment waiting to be eaten!

 

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I sliced up a peach, sprinkled it with cinnamon and brown sugar. I microwaved it for 30 seconds, and then topped it with a container of peach Chobani. On top, I added a cup of the cinnamon flavored Kashi H2H cereal. YUM!

 

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Yesterday, before I left for my late afternoon class, I knew that I needed a decently heavy snack. I am really trying to increase my intake of fruits and veggies, so I decided to pack them in.

 

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I roasted a small sweet potato, two carrots, and some brussel sprouts. I sprinkled them with salt and pepper, and baked for 20 minutes at 350F.

 

After writing yesterday’s post about happiness, my mood was brighter all day. I drew a smiley face in the ketchup! 😀

 

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I also made a pre-packed sandwich at home. I’ve been getting really bad about spending too much on food on campus. I’m always tempted by subway sandwiches, when I have the same stuff at home.

 

I tried to think about why I always feel like my sandwiches suck. I realized I was making plain turkey and cheese. DUH! I added some mustard, spinach, and banana peppers, and BAM! Instantly tastes so much better!

 

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It was really filling, too!

 

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When I got home, I had two little “ice cream sandwiches” that I made.

 

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My mom told me about this idea. Basically you take graham cracker squares, and put a large spoonful of low fat cool whip (I used Publix generic) and freeze them.

 

Once they are frozen, they taste like little ice cream sandwiches!

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They are really low calorie and taste great! However, I would probably eat anything sweet.

 

Well, I’m officially on spring break.

 

I really need to get out of this town for a bit. I feel like I have some junk I need to leave behind. I’m planning an impromptu road trip. When I get home tonight, I’m packing my bag and hitting the road.

 

❤ MegaNerd

Motivator

Good morning!

 

I felt extra awake this morning, which was shocking considering I spent ALL day on campus for classes, a test, a lab, and a club meeting. I was gone from 7:00 am to 9:30 pm!

 

Instead of using my extra 20 minutes for laying in bed wide awake, I jumped on the bike trainer.

 

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I got in a super quick cardio workout! I took my heart rate monitor out of retirement to get an idea of how hard I was working.

 

Bike Stats:

  • Duration: 20 minutes
  • Average Heart Rate: 137 bpm
  • Max Heart Rate: 159 bpm
  • Calories burned: 150

 

A couple readers asked about my indoor bicycle trainer last week. It was my Christmas present from my parents, so I really had no idea how to answer your questions like where I bought it and how much it cost.

 

I did some research (Googled it) and found my trainer. I have the Bell Motivator indoor trainer, which you can find here.

 

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I love it!

 

It is super easy to use, and requires no assembly. I literally popped it out of the box, unfolded it, and hooked my bike in. It takes about 30 seconds to set up.

 

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It is quite easy to put the bike in and out. There are two clamps that you set the bike into and twist to tighten. It feels very sturdy.

 

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The back wheel rests on the resistance magnet at the bottom which might need adjusting for your particular bike, but once that’s set, your bike will go in and out without much fuss. The front wheel just rests on the floor, or you can purchase  block to set it on ( I do not have one).

 

The magnetic resistance piece can be tightened or loosened to adjust the level of difficulty you are looking for.

 

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The only downside is that it sounds like a muffled vacuum cleaner. It can get loud if you pedal SUPER fast, but not if you are pedaling at a decent cadence. Just in case this helps make it more clear, I can hear the tv over the bike trainer without turning it up.

 

If you are into biking, looking for a form of cross training, trying to not leave your house in the cold of winter, or just find biking fun, I would recommend looking into a trainer. This is the only one I have ever tried, and I am sure there are better ones out there. I’m very happy with it, though!

 

Feel free to ask any questions about it!

 

Breakfast

 

Typing all of this out worked up an appetite! I was craving a hot breakfast. It is still SO COLD in Florida! I am used to the weather cycling back and forth. We have had close to freezing temperatures for weeks now! So much for global warming.

 

I made a delicious bowl of oatmeal. I haven’t had oats since my birthday! I have missed them.

 

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My bowl included:

  • 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 TBL flax
  • 1 tsp brown sugar (love it.)
  • banana
  • almonds and walnuts

 

I love eating super healthy and filling breakfasts. They make me feel better about my morning.

 

❤ MegaNerd

 

Note: Just so this is clear, no one is paying me to say that I like this product (The Bell Motivator). I just happen to enjoy it and want to share it with my readers.