Monday, January 31, 2011


Ok, has anyone out there gone for a nice long run, or participated in some major speed or tempo work to come home and find themselves feeling horrible and in the bathroom for the better part of the day?

Don't forget to let your body fully recover, not only by resting but by refueling with healthy foods that have a good source of vitamins, minerals and protein. These below are some of my favorites. I promise that if you do refuel as part of your total recovery you will fill better TONS quicker. P.S. Don't forget to drink water!

I realize this probably looks like an advertisement for EAS products... but for me these do make me feel the best as far as recovery. They do taste pretty good as well. If anyone out there as tried slim fast, this is pretty close to the same flavor.

Two quick stories to prove my point. Two weeks ago I went for a 14 miler, the run felt fine, did some tempo at the end but because of the weather I did all the running on the treadmill(YUK, YUK and YUK). I didn't get home and refuel quick enough and spent a good portion of the morning feeling pretty much like total junk and making several trips to the restroom. I knew I was in for it when driving home from the gym my stomach started to churn....I was like SHOOT, I forgot my protein drink. (P.S. don't forget to drink enough water!)

Last week I ran my 15 miler, outside, in the hills around my home. Ran a steady even pace, felt exhausted at the end but was able to drink water continuously and refuel within at least 20 minutes of finishing the run. As as result, felt totally fine after a nice warm shower and was able to go about my day as usual. (P.S. I drank more water)

On a side note, another little thing I do to refuel or recover is take an Airborne. I prefer the pink grapefruit flavor and it really seems to help get me back on track. Typically I think it is to help build immunity towards colds and such. BUT, it is also a nifty little pick me up. =) Try it, I bet you will be pleasantly surprised.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Skinny Foods

All three of us sisters love the Today Show and yesterday Joy Bauer was on with Kathie Lee and Hoda.  If you don't know who Joy is, she is a nutritionist and heath expert.  Joy was talking about Skinny Foods, with the New Year in full swing a lot of us have made goals to cut those calories and get back to the gym.  Which leaves us all wondering what to eat??

Well here it is, straight from Joy Bauer...

Air-Popped Popcorn

Water Chestnuts


Grape Tomatoes

Plain Nonfat Greek Yogurt


Atomic Fireballs

Naturally-Flavored Seltzer

Egg Whites

Whole Wheat Sandwich Thins

Vegetable Soup

Along with this list she gave different ways to enjoy these skinny foods.  You can find that info HERE.

I for one love popcorn, salsa, greek yogurt, really I love almost everything on this list already so it will be easy to incorporate it into my diet.  Thanks Joy!

Here is the Video Below of Joy on the Today Show.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 27, 2011


Why do we do speed work? So we can get faster. It is that simple.

When I started running I didn't do speed work. I felt like it was a major accomplishment for me to get my rear out that door and come home without stopping! But then once I started to get into better shape I wanted to become faster. So that is when I started reading up on what makes a fast runner fast. I came to learn that there are several different things we can control and several things we can't. If you want more detailed information about what makes a person fast click here.

I have decided that although all of that information is very helpful and interesting what it boils down to is an individuals desire to get faster. If a person is truly dedicated to becoming a faster runner then they will become one. Depending on all kinds of different factors doing speed work does make you faster. For some it can shave minutes and for others seconds, but regardless you are faster.

Something that I find comforting about running is that someone will always be faster then you. That may sound backwards, but really it helps. You can throw your ego out the door and really focus on what will make you better as an individual and grow from there. (One of my running coaches told us that). Doing speed work allows you to slowly set small goals for yourself. Small goals you can reach and be proud of! That is right, you did it.

So I challenge all that if they want to become faster, feel stronger and get in even better shape to incorporate speed into their weekly running workouts. Every run should have a purpose and there is always room for growth. Examples of speed workouts that you can incorporate can be found at Runners World. You can also go to the book store and there are several books on speed that can help you find a plan that will work for you.

My friend Adrienne found this video and posted it on our Ragnar blog last year. Whenever I am feeling like I need a pick me up I watch this video and it inspires me to go out and give it more and become better. Keep it up People. It is worth it.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Penne with Spinach Sauce

I do love myself a little Giada every now and then.  And this recipe of hers is quick and easy.  You must give it a try when you need to do some carbo loading for your training. To get the step by step instructions just go HERE.

Taken with IPhone camera so please excuse the fuzzies!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Spring Fever

Is it just me or are you guys ready for winter to be OVER! Usually the New York winters are moderately mild. I remember 2 years ago we only had 4" of snow all year. That was a good year. It seems as though this year it is snowing every week and the temps dropped into the single digits. When I lived in MN that was expected but not over here in NYC.

I am ready, for more than reason. I have been out of running commission and I am ready to get back in the game. In fact I was supposed to go for a light jog today but couldn't because it was just too cold. The forecast for the next two days is snow and freezing rain so I guess I won't be running until Thursday. That is ok because I am kind of nervous. Nervous because if I run to soon and run into pain, well then that sets me back again! But I am also nervous because we are supposed to start training for Grandma's marathon in about 3 weeks! Oh boy!

With spring fever and an uneasy stomach I know what will get me in the mood! Look what I found...these few things have been added to my list of things I want.

First off I really want these cool new Nike shorts. I don't really love pink but I think it is the spring fever that is leading me to this color.

Next up is this Lululemon sports bra. Call me crazy but I kind of like the leopard print.

I can totallly picture Jillian Michaels wearing these Nike pants...... Jillian rocks so I would rock them too.

Another item from Lululemon because I love them. This looks like a prefect fitting tank for me.

And just to switch is up and match my pink shorts I would get this pink Lululemon tank as well.

Yes, yes I know Lululemon..

Another new pair of Asics running shoes. (I am smiling as I write this because if my husband Scott saw, he would be like...What! Another pair of running shoes.)

Last but not least I have been coveting these for the past 6 months and I am not ever sure why I have not bought them yet. I absolutely love them and they are prefect for spring time running.
Smartwool ArmWarmers!

That is it. This is on my wish list along with the increase in the temperate outside.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Mashed Cauliflower

I follow The Today Show on twitter. I have a small obsession with Matt Lauer, Meredith Viera, Al and my real favorite, Natalie Morales (she is an athlete =)).
Anywhoo, on twitter the other day it read something like, "too Scared to eat mashed potatoes because you might gain weight? Try Mashed Cauliflower" and to that statement, I say HOG WASH! No offense to Cauliflower but there is nothing wrong with potatoes, even if they are mashed and mixed with some butter and milk.
There are TONS of delicious foods out there so why deprive yourself? Eat in moderation, exercise and enjoy. Before cutting the calories I say hit the gym! Find inspiration and stay motivated.

This lovely meal is a family favorite! Chicken Curry, warms the insides and has potatoes as an ingredient. Enjoy.

Recipe as Follows:
1lb cubed chicken
3-4 carrots chopped
4-5 medium potatoes cubed
1pkg Golden Curry Sauce mix

Boil chicken, carrots and potatoes with enough water to barely cover until potatoes are tender. Turn heat to low, mix in sauce mix and pour over white rice. Eat up, it is Scrumptious.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Keeping them movin'....

One of the great things about Minnesota Winters is that at some schools for gym class they take the kids out and get them ice skating.  The kids love it, along with it being a great skill to learn and tons of good exercise.  This was Elsa's first grade class.  To get the kids on the ice faster, they ask the parents to come help tie skates.  I was more than happy to help.  So much fun!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Foam Roller

When I first started running I knew nothing about it. I ran in my Nike Shocks for an entire year before I realized that I needed different running shoes. So I stepped up, bought new shoes and was on my way. I didn't even run with a watch, I guess you could have called me a purest in some sense. I started training for my first marathon and began having shin splints. I had my coach give me some stretches but didn't look any further into it. It wasn't until Jen started running that she informed me of the Foam Roller. Of course I had heard of it but never bought one. Jen likes to research about everything. So when she first started running and ran into major IT Band problems she looked into it and found the foam roller, and then proceeded to tell me to get one pronto. Now I can't go without it!

Long story short is that the Foam Roller is vital for stretching your muscles and preventing injury. I have a small travel size one because I live in a small apartment but the longer ones are great too. There are tons of videos on YouTube about how to use the Foam Roller. If you are a beginner runner or even advanced and don't have one, I recommend buying one! It is well worth it.

I made a little video using a Vintage Video Maker app (thx Reagan for showing me this!) on my phone. Really I just wanted to experiment and I didn't have anyone to help me so please forgive me for the poor footage(my head cut off in the beginning) and it being a silent video, I am talking but all you can hear is the music. But to see more informative and longer videos go HERE.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Heart Rate and Recovery Runs

In my running club they are having us figure out our Maximum and resting heart rates for training purposes. Heart rate can be used for several different reasons. In our club, one reason would be to make sure on your recovery days you are actually recovering. As runners, I think a general mentality is to just always try to push to go faster and faster which at times can cause more harm then good. So staying within a certain zone on a recovery day can really be helpful for your body. For more information on what an actual Recovery Run is, please click Here.

BUT, I have decided I do not like running Long Slow runs. For these simple reasons.... they are long and extra slow! So what would normally take you 1.5 hrs now takes you almost 2 and for what... to recover???!!! How do you all feel about this? Yesterday was cold, I went 12 miles and I had a hard time staying warm and not getting stiff and I felt it was because I tried to go so slow and stay within what would be my heart rate recovery zone.....CRAZINESS I say!!

Although heart rate is important and so is recovery, I have decided to recover only from 4-6 miles. Then, I am going to turn my long runs back into a variety of tempo and general aerobic runs where you run your natural pace or faster. What do ya think?

On a side note....

This is me sporting my staying warm in the winter running gear. It is important to wear layers so you can shed if necessary. When running I have found all kinds of trees, bushes, etc. that provide excellent hiding spots for extra layers that were making me uncomfortable. Be smart and stay warm!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


I do love a great glass of water.   But how much are we suppose to drink a day?  I have been really watching my water consumption.  I also did a little online research about how much I should be drinking... and what I found out was, A LOT!!  Which is totally ok with me.   I like the information I found on the Mayo Clinic site the best.

Nalgene Everyday Wide-Mouth Loop-Top Water Bottle - 32 fl. oz. 

You can get them at lots of places these days.. Just remember to fill it up often.  I try to drink at least three of these a day!

Monday, January 17, 2011


I am so excited for my sister Heather to be running her first marathon!  I promised her that if she ran, I would do it with her and stay by her side the entire time.  I think this is good for two reasons, one is that is it always good to have a support system with you when you are running and two, is that I have been so hard on my body with my last two marathons that it will be good to take it easy.  As I say this I am thinking that Heather is really not as slow as she thinks she is so ultimatly I think we will make a good match.  Jen will be up head working on her speed so Heather and I will keep up the tail end :)

Back to the point!  I wanted to reccomend two books out there for all of you runners.  Even if you don't plan on running a marathon, these are good to have. 
The first is Beginner's Guide to Long Distance Running.  This book is good for helping you with the basics like, shoes, stretching, avoiding injury, diet and food.  It also has training plans for those who would like to run a full or half.  Jen really likes this book.
Second is Nancy Clark's Food Guide for Marathoners.  Ever wondering what you should and shouldn't be eating??  Well this book will tell you everything. How many grams of fiber, how much protein when and what to eat for optimal performance.  I really like this book and go back to it consistently for reference.

Well there you have it!  These two books will help start you on your way towards an awesome marathon!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Well I did it....

I will be running my first full marathon this summer... wish me luck!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Movie and a Snack

Bryan and I go out one night every weekend without the kids. We do something different every weekend. In the summer we love to go for runs on our date night. In the winter we either head out to the Mall of America to walk around or go to a movie.

Last weekend we got a late start so we picked a movie. We had only a half hour before the movie started. We had not eaten dinner yet either and we both knew if we didn't eat a little something we would totally pig out on popcorn and candy at the movie. So we decided to grab some take out from Pei Wei. We got the Sesame Chicken to share and some Edamame. We ate the chicken in the car while we drove very fast... but not to fast to the theater. With no time to eat the Edamame I had the great idea to sneak them into the theater in my purse! And what a great snack they were=)

Totally good for you and after eating the entire box I didn't feel guilty at all!! Nor did I feel bloated from stuffing my face with salty popcorn.

We did have to get a little something sweet so Bryan picked Sour Patch kids but over all a great night.

We saw Country Song. It was pretty good. Go see it and sneak in Edamame for a snack. I promise you will love it.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Kara Goucher No Worries!

Hey all, I follow Goucher on Facebook and get periodic updates on how her new life with her new little boy Colt is doing. Lately it has been stressful! Hospital visits, Abscess's on his Jaw, Staph Infection... check it out HERE.

Kara Goucher on the Left. Photo found HERE.

No worries Kara. We will watch you run fast all in good time. Take care of that little guy and get him healthy =)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

German Pancake

This is a staple in my house.  It is fast, easy and somewhat on the healthy side.  This is my version of German Pancake.

Preheat Oven: 425
6 eggs (4 whole, 2 whites)
1 C. White or Whole Wheat Flour
1 C. Milk
1 tsp. Vanilla extract

I use a rectangle baking dish but you can use two pie dishes or even 2 square dishes. I spray with Pam and set aside. You are welcome to use butter to grease the pan if you prefer.

Next in a bowl I add 4 eggs with 2 egg whites. Scramble, then add 1 cup flour. Mix together to get most of the lumps out and then add the 1 cup milk.  After is it all mixed together I add the tsp of vanilla.

Pour into the baking dish and bake for 20- 25 mins.  When it comes out it will look like the picture above.

To enjoy it, I like to spread it with almond butter and add a little syrup.   My husband Scott likes to have only syrup on his but I like to add more protein.  This recipe is great because it has more protein than a regular pancake. 

Also, sometimes I will use half white flour and half whole wheat flour. Just remember that if you use all whole wheat flour or more egg whites that it will not fluff up as much but it still tastes great.  I like the whole wheat because it adds more flavor and texture. 

Try it out!  You will love it!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Keepin' them moving....

I find that being the mother of four growing kids I am always thinking of ways to keep them moving and grooving to burn off energy and stay physically active. Today one of my favorites was used. Bundling them up and sending them out to shovel the snow. It was pretty cold today so it was good that it didn't snow that much. The snow was light and fluffy and it was easy for them to shovel and feel a sense of accomplishment. A win win for me. They were proud of what they did and they burned off tons of energy doing it. ( I know only three are pictured here.. the fourth was taking a nap)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Staying Motivated

This was me after a nice summer run.  I like to stretch against that brick wall behind me.

For most of 2010 I have been injured.  Injured enough to keep me from running.  I have been running for a few years now and I would say it is my favorite workout. That being said, because I haven't been able to do my favorite thing, I have had to look for alternate options.  It is easy to get down on yourself when you physically can not do the things you would like to do. So this is what I do to keep my spirits up!
I try out a new classes at the gym (this was when I was at 24 Hour Fitness). Yoga, Spin, Bootcamp etc.  Anything that would keep me moving but took the impact of my leg.  Currently I do not belong to a gym, so I try other at home methods.  DVDs are a great way to keep me moving at home.  To keep from getting board with DVDs, I play them on my laptop and then have a TV show on in the background.  This will distract me from getting bored while I am doing the same moves. I was doing the P90X series for a while but recently I have been changing it up. Netflix has a lot of different workout option DVDs.  I rent them and if I like it, great! But if I don't, I just send it back to try another one.

The most important thing here is staying positive.  I try to remember that with most injuries, they will heal over time.  It is being patient during that time and finding alternate plans of working out. I think of it as a time to get to try something new! To get me out of the rut of doing the same thing over and over again.  Remembering your body loves to change it up.  I may even loose a pound of two, or even better tone my body in a place that was not being targeted before. 

For me it's staying positive, staying motivated, being creative and before I know it, time will fly by and I am back to doing what I love again!

This is Scott my husband handing me flowers after my marathon.

Saturday, January 8, 2011


Well I did it. I ran my first "real" 5k race. I felt ok throughout most of the race but did need to stop and take a drink.... I realize that I do not need to hydrate after only running only 1.5 miles but my brain just needed to calm down for a minute and then give it all I had for the last 1/2. I came in under 24 minutes and I am happy... but ready to be faster, BRING IT!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Yoga and Oatmeal 5k's

First off, I tried Yoga the other day. It was very interesting and intense. It reconfirmed what I already knew about myself, that I am NOT flexible and very tight. I wonder if Yoga and running would be a good combo???

Also, on a side note, this picture below is of me and one of my girlfriends before we ran the Long Beach marathon in October.
This Saturday I am going to go out of my comfort zone and run my first "real" 5k. I feel much more comfortable tackling a marathon then a 5k. I am the steady eddy type. So WISH ME LUCK!! Who knows what will happen. Every time I think about giving all I've got within 3 miles I feel completely overwhelmed.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

My Workout Outfit

Most of the time I will workout from my apt.  I used to be a member at 24 hour fitness but after I was injured I hardly went, so I stopped paying for it.  I have been working out in my apt for almost 4 years now with an on and off stint of gym memberships.  I don't mind it, and when my body is working correctly I love to run outside.

So today I did my Tracey Anderson Method Sequence II DVD. This is what I wore.  This is probably my favorite workout outfit.  Please forgive me for the unflattering pictures.  I tried to take these on my own after I worked out so I look a little messy.

Anyways Tank Top from Lord and Taylor, Men's Polo.  I stole this from my husband.  I love it because it is baggy and doesn't cling to me.  Sports bra, Nike.  Love these!  Pants you may recognize from my sister Heather's earlier post. Lululemon Wunder Under Crop.  And shoes, Asics Gel Nimbus.  These are the best shoes for me.  Yes, they are my running shoes.  I have tried to switch over to other types of shoes instead of buying the same ones over and over but it is no use.  These are what work for me and I just need to stick with them!  The beauty here is that I don't even have to try them on.  I just go into the store, ask for the Nimbus size 9.5, pay and then I am outta there.  Unless of course I see something cute to try on ;)

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