Thursday, January 31, 2013

Foodie Pen Pal Reveal!

It's that time again!
The Lean Green Bean

 What I love about participating in this every month is I get the chance to put together a box for my penpal, and I also get to receive a box of yummy stuff from a completely different person!
 This month I sent a box to Rhonda, who blogs at The Rhoyal Report. Check out her blog if you would like to see what I sent her!
 I received a box of goodies from Lauren, she has an awesome blog over at Teaguefc. She is 17 weeks pregnant with her first baby, and is just the cutest thing ever!!

 When I first opened the package, this is the card I saw!
Ummm....yes!!! How awesome is that card?!




Lauren knew that I'm running and eating healthy, so she sent me some delicious healthy things.
 Eat Your Vegetables chips, Italian Herb and Olive Oil. I'd never had these before, and they were amazing!
 Annie's organic bunnie gummies. I didn't even mention to her that my favorite candy is anything gummy!
Fruitzio freeze dried strawberry's. YUM. Only 100 calories in the whole bag! Woohoo!
 And also, inspired by her recent trip to Mexico, she sent me some Guacamole Mix (that I will be making for our superbowl party!!), Fajita skillet sauce, and Taco seasoning

 Thank you so much, Lauren! I love it all!
Want to know more about the program and how it works? Go to Lindsey's blog, at The Lean Green Bean, and read about it!


I also want to thank you ALL so much for the well wishes and excitement over my signing up for a marathon. You all ROCK!!

katie

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

I finally did it...

I registered for my first FULL marathon!!


I am SO excited and scared out of my mind at the same time! I knew I needed to quit putting it off, and JUST DO IT! Their website says it's a great course for first timers. I have 11 weeks!

I just want to say how much I really love and appreciate all of you here and on facebook. I totally believe I would not be where I am today if it weren't for you all encouraging me and pushing me. You all have so much faith in me and really believe that I can do this. Even when I didn't believe in myself, you all did. Thank you with all of my heart!

katie

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

There must be something wrong with me!

Hi Friends! Welcome to my newly redesigned blog! How do you like it?
 I've been wanting to update it for awhile, but had no idea where to start! I was reading my friend Hanna's blog at bouffeebambini, I loved the look of hers, so I looked around and found out that Kim, at  733design designed hers. 
 I gave her a few of my ideas, and this is what she came up with! Kim was great to work with. I'm thrilled with it!!

Saturday was my LONG run! I ran 17 miles. My longest run to date! It was fabulous!

I normally go to a park for my long runs, but it's 30 minutes away, and honestly I just didn't feel like driving. So, I decided to run around my neighborhood, about 2 miles around and through the streets. 
A funny thing happened... as I was running this guy stopped me and asked about my running. (This is where I run throughout the week too, for my shorter runs.) He then said "my mom lives right here (pointing to a house), and she said there must be something wrong with that girl cause she runs all the time".
 I just laughed!! I've never been told that before!
Wow, what a huge compliment!! :)

Have you ever been told you're crazy because you run so much?

Have a beautiful day!!
katie

Friday, January 25, 2013

Crock Pot Lasagna

Howdy Howdy!

  A few days ago I made Crockpot Lasagna. I've never made it before, but thought it sounded good, so wanted to give it a try!
 Let me just say, it was heaven on a plate!! It was insanely good! 
Here's the recipe:

Ingredients:
  • 1 pound (16 ounces) ground beef
  • 1/2 cup diced white onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 (24 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 whole egg
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley or 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 6 uncooked lasagna noodles
Directions:
  1. In a large skillet brown beef and onion. Add garlic and cook for one minute. Drain.
  2. Add spaghetti sauce and water and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  3. Mix ricotta, 1 1/2 cups mozzarella, 2 Tablespoons Parmesan, egg and parsley.
  4. Pour 1 cup of spaghetti meat sauce into a 4 to 6 quart sized slow cooker. Place half of the noodles and half of the ricotta mixture on top of the sauce. Cover with 2 cups meat sauce. Top with remaining noodles (break the noodles to fit) and cheese mixture and meat sauce.
  5. Cook on low for 3 1/2 hours or until noodles are soft. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of mozzarella and remaining parmesan. Cover with the lid to melt the cheese and let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.
  6. Do not overcook and don't try to speed up the process by cooking it on high. 
I only had 1 piece, but my son had at least 3!! He said it was his new favorite thing that I make. :)
Last night I went to another Bootcamp class. 
I'm sure you remember how I complained about the instructor being so boring and having no energy or anything. Well, last week Charity put in an anonymous note about it, and just suggested a few things that would make the class better. I wanted to go one more time, to see if anything had changed. 
  I got there a few minutes early, so was able to chat with the instructor for a little bit. She was very sweet and friendly.
  In class we used a step this time. So that totally changed all the moves and it was very challenging! She still seemed unprepared and I wouldn't exactly say she was energetic, but this class actually did seem a lot better than the other two. I think it's just her personality is not outgoing, and that's just the way she is.
So, hopefully she read the note and things will keep getting better!

 Do you have a crockpot? What's your favorite thing to make in it?


katie

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

My first Zumba class!

I have heard about Zumba for so long, and I always thought it sounded like fun, but I have no rhythm and I'm a horrible dancer, so didn't even want to attempt it!
 Well, last year my friend, Melissa, asked me many times to go with her. I gave her so many excuses as to why I couldn't, she finally quit asking me! 
  But I finally decided I wanted to give it a try, so I asked her to join me, and she did!

I didn't get any pictures, so I just borrowed this one.
It was SO MUCH FUN!!! It'll take me going several times to learn all the moves, but it was an excellent workout!
 You know I've complained about the boring boot camp instructor, well this instructor was awesome!! She was fun, happy, energetic and full of life! I also loved that she pushed us- as we're doing burpees, she says don't stop now, squats- hold it a little longer, keep your arms up, etc. She was very encouraging!
  I was nervous and worried about looking stupid, but ya know what? Who cares!! Nobody was watching me anyway, and even if they were, they had to learn it too! This is definitely a class I'll be taking again!

On another note...15 days until I sail away!
I think the last time I was this excited was on my wedding day!!
Of course I had to check out their fitness options! There is a jogging track that goes around the ship. 

How amazing will it be to run here!! They also have a gym and some fitness classes too. 

QOTD: Have you ever taken a Zumba class? If so, did you like it?


katie

Monday, January 21, 2013

I don't sweat, I salt! Why??

Good Monday Morning!

  I hope y'all had a wonderful weekend! My honey was out of town this weekend, so I had the house to myself and got lots of quiet time. It was awesome!! 

  I did a 16 mile run on Saturday!
My battery died right before I reached 16 miles! But I promise I did it!
I also wasn't able to listen to my music the last 5 miles, because the battery was running low. That made it really difficult. I hate that I can't use Runkeeper and listen to music at the same time on my long runs, because of the battery! I'll have to figure something else out...

  Before I even got to 2 miles, I got a bad cramp in my stomach. I knew it was because I started my run in the afternoon, instead of the morning. That always happens when I run later in the day. 
  But I just pushed through it for the next few miles and it went away!

I finally made it to 16! I was really surprised, but 16 miles felt easier than my 15 last week! It was absolutely wonderful! Of course the thought went through my mind  "only 10 more, and I'll have run a marathon!"
 Of course at this point I can't imagine running 1 more, let alone 10 more! 
But, I KNOW I can do it. The reason I know that is because I remember when I could only run 3 miles, I couldn't imagine running 10 more, for a half marathon. So if I can do that, I know I can do this too! 
WORN OUT!!

Now for my question: When I run 3 miles, I get sweaty and red faced. When I run more than that, I don't sweat, I just get salty! Sorry, I know that's gross.
 After this 16 miles I could run my finger along my face and get tons of salt! 
Why is that? I take 2 GU's during my run, I also drink gatorade and water. Any idea what I'm doing wrong or what else I need to do?

 Have an awesome day, friends!!


Did you run this weekend?
Any idea why I get salty?

Friday, January 18, 2013

This is what I do...

Happy Friday, my friends!!

I am so blessed that each morning I get to look at these precious faces!
I have a home daycare, and LOVE what I do! I've had my 2 girls since they were 3 months old, they're now 24 and 18 months old. I just got my little boy this week, he is 3 months old.
  I'm not able to have a baby of my own (I might blog about that someday...), so these babies definitely fill the baby hole in my heart. The good thing about it is I don't have to go through the sleepless nights and everything else Momma's go through. I give them back at 5:00, and my day is over. Although I've heard it's all worth it, I'm just trying to find the positive in my situation! 

  Last night I took another boot camp class! Yes, with the boring instructor I talk about here. She was still un-energetic (is that a word?), and this time didn't even seem prepared! It seemed to take her several seconds to even decide what our next move would be! At one point she was trying to decide our next move and said we would do one thing, then said "no, we'll do it this way, it's easier". WHAT THE HECK! I don't want easy! I'm not paying for easy! I want you to make me think I'm dying!! (I ended up doing it the more difficult way anyway.)
 I wish I could just take over this class. They'd call me Jilllian, compared to this lady!

Thankfully, I still worked up a good sweat by the time it was over.

Tomorrow I'm going to attempt to run 16 miles! Last weekend was 15 miles and I could not have made it 1 more mile. But tomorrow I will do it!!!


Are you running or racing tomorrow?
Any fun plans for the weekend?


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Mental Tips for Running and Nature Box Winner!

Congrats to Megan, at I run for wine for winning my Nature Box giveaway! I've sent you an email!

 Recently my friend, Carie, told me that sometimes she has trouble staying mentally motivated during her runs, and asked me if I had any tips to help keep her going. I shared with her a few things that help me, and also wanted to share them with you. I know that running can be as much a mental challenge as it can be a physical test of strength. Many times I've felt like my body could keep going, but my mind wanted to stop! I still have a lot to learn, but this is what I've experienced so far.

  • 1. Talk to yourself
    If you read my previous post, I mention how in the 14th mile I was talking to myself. I was saying things like "You can do this, Katie. You're so strong. You can do anything! You've come this far, don't stop now. Think how awesome you'll feel when it's over!" And so on. That helps me so much. And who cares if people think I'm crazy! ;)

  • 2. Break it up
    This is another thing I do on my long runs. For instance, for my 15 miles, I just told myself I would run 5 miles 3 times. I normally run around the same quarter of a mile path a million times, and that doesn't bother me at all. But this time every 5 miles, I would find a new path, to change things up a little bit.

  • 3. Use your imagination
    When things are getting rough, I think about the GOOD I'm doing for my body by running, I imagine my legs getting stronger and more muscular. I imagine what I'm going to look like when I reach my goal weight. I imagine how I'll feel when I cross the finish line of my first marathon (gulp)! I imagine what it'll feel like having that medal placed around my neck. I even imagine seeing the clock at the finish line, and it's under my goal time. And of course I imagine the big bowl of icecream I'm going to eat. :)

  • 4. Distract yourself
    Take attention away from how you're feeling, and focus on everything outside of your body. I try to focus on other runners, or spectators (if you're in a race). I'll think about my next blog post, I pray and ask God for strength. I just try not to think about the aches and pains!

I know there are many more, these are just a few things that work for me.

What helps you mentally during your runs? Do you have anymore tips?

Monday, January 14, 2013

Long Run Fun!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!
Today I am a 'Featured Sneaker' on Kat's blog, Sneakers and Fingerpaints! I hope you will check it out!
 
Saturday was my first chance to run all week, and I did 15 miles!
The most I've done before was 14, so this was all new to me! I was fine until the last mile, then I really struggled! I was half laughing, half crying, talking to myself and praying, all at the same time! I'm sure I looked like a crazy person! 
 When it was all over, the runner's high was AMAZING! It was a crazy awesome feeling!
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I could run 15 MILES!! I remember last year when I could only run 5k's, and just thinking there's no way I can even run 1 more mile! 
 If you believe you can do it, YOU CAN DO ANYTHING!
I'm starting now to think MAYBE I could run a full marathon... but the thought still terrifies me!

Did you run or race this weekend?

Don't forget to enter my Nature Box giveaway! Ends Wednesday!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Bootcamp and Icecream!!

Happy Friday!!
 Let's start off with a confession....
This happened yesterday.
I was hoping this juice fast would've broken my addiction to icecream, but alas, it didn't!
Here's the truth; I only ate half some of it. I then called my honey from my bootcamp class and asked him to throw it away before I got home. He said he already had! OMG, he better be glad I asked him to do it, because if he threw it away, and I found out about it, it would not have been good! Ya don't mess with an addicted girls icecream!! Ahhh...he's got so much to learn. ;)

  Last night I took my first boot camp class! Charity had asked me several times to go with her, and I finally said yes!
I don't know what is going on with my arm! Haha!
It was a blast! The only thing I didn't like about it, was the instructor was SO boring! I don't think she smiled one time. She would just say "ok, now we're gonna do this, now we're gonna do this..." She didn't talk to us, she didn't check our form on anything, she was no fun AT ALL.
  I would love to be a fitness instructor someday. And when I am, I'm going to be fun and happy!! I will actually talk to the people in my class, and help them and make sure they're doing the moves right. I follow Stuft Mama's blog, she's also a fitness instructor. She just seems so full of life and happy, I'm sure her classes are awesome!
 But other than that, it was fun and challenging. The only thing that is sore today are my legs- we did tons of squats and lunges! I will definitely be going back for more!
I love a good sweat!
Now, it's time for some lunch! Oh sushi, my love, how I have missed you!!
Have a fabulous weekend, lovelies!!

QOTD: Have you ever taken a boot camp class?

 Don't forget to enter my Nature Box giveaway! Ends Wednesday!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

End of Juice Fast Recap!

Good morning, my friends!

  Well, I have decided to end my juice fast today, after 2 weeks, instead of 3. You all encouraged me to listen to my body, and just do what is right for me- without feeling guilty!
The reason I chose to go on a juice fast was just to detox and cleanse my body. Over the holidays I gained 5 lbs.- all junk! I've heard this called a juice 'feast', and I think I like that term better! I was still getting a healthy amount of calories every day, but actually getting a LOT more nutrients. I normally never eat any veggies! (Bad, I know!)
Usually when people fast, they greatly reduce their calories, the metabolism slows, and they have no energy. But juice fasting is different because you're getting all your calorie needs met, and also getting a massive cleanse at the same time! Since juicing doesn't require hardly any digestion, it gives your digestive system a chance to rest, and your body then works to clean out the toxins and other yucky stuff. Did you know the average person holds 5-10 lbs. of old toxins in our body? Ewwww!! So juice fasting is the ideal way to get rid of all that, while still giving the body the chance to rejuvenate and restore!
 Yes, I did tons of research on this, before doing it. I wanted to know what I was getting into! :)

Here are just a few of my juices over the past 2 weeks!
 The only real difficult day was the first day. I had a headache and NO energy at all, I felt really lethargic. But by day 2, I felt back to normal, and have ever since! I've heard that the first 3 days are the worst. If you can make it through those days- you're good to go! But thankfully, it was only day 1 for me!
  I didn't have any cravings or feelings like I was going to give up until day 9. That day was a real mental struggle for me. I just wanted to CHEW something so bad. I then decided the next day I would eat something at dinner with Jeremy. I got tilapia and steamed vegetables. (Although my stomach was not happy afterwards!) 
 Every afternoon I would also have chicken broth or tomato soup, (made with water) as well.

This has been a wonderful experience! I have lost 10 lbs. I feel wonderful! I've had tons of energy, was able to keep up with my running and strength training, even getting an 11 minute PR on my virtual half marathon

  I will definitely be doing this again. I know people who do this for 30-60 days, but I think next time I will just do 7 days. I think that would be the perfect time frame for me. I plan to do it again before our cruise, in Feb.

 Now I'm going to go eat something! I'm going to start off VERY slow. After the bad experience with the tilapia, I realized that was just too much at one time. I think I might have a little bit of Bob's Red Mill Muesli. I've been wanting to try this!



Feel free to ask me any questions at all!


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Nature Box Review and Giveaway!

I had heard a lot about Nature Box, in the blog world, so I was very excited when Molly contacted me and asked me to do a review of the December box!
What is Nature Box? Well, for $19.95 every month, they choose 5 different healthy, all natural, nutritionist approved snacks to send you. They also donate one meal for every box to help feed the over 14 million hungry children in America. I love that!! You can pause or cancel your subscription at any time.
Here are the 5 goodies that were in my box!
Masa Crisps. These were seriously delicious little crisps! They suggest dipping them in hummus, or sprinkling over a salad or chili. We ate them right out of the bag. They were that good!


Dried Pears. These are nothing but fresh, sun-sweetened pears. They have a soft, buttery texture. Most dried fruit has extra sugars added to them, I loved that these didn't. Delicious!
Pistachio Power Clusters. These made the perfect afternoon snack. They have a touch of sea salt, which makes them a perfect blend of sweet and salty.
Wild Blueberry Flax Granola. These were probably my favorite item in the whole box. I have quite an obsession with my granola/yogurt/fruit parfaits! And these did not disappoint! Packed with blueberries and flax seeds, it was the perfect amount of crunch!

Lemon Pucker Pistachios. I didn't even get a picture of these, because my son took them so fast! I did have one though, and they were my least favorite. I love pistachio's, but not when you add lemon to them! But my boy sure did like them!

Want to try Nature Box for yourself? They are offering my readers 25% off your first month's subscription! Use Promo Code PISTACHIO to receive this discount.
Find them here:
Nature Box Website
Twitter
Facebook

Enter below for a chance to win your own box! a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, January 6, 2013

"I can't run in the cold!"

Have you ever said that before? Well, I have!
 This past July was when I started getting serious about running. I started my half marathon training, and never missed a day. But I've always wondered what I would do in the winter. Because I can't run in the cold! I doubt there is anyone who hates cold more than me. I figured I would just spend the winter running on my treadmill. I don't mind that, but I just don't think I can do 10+ miles on there! So I really didn't know what to expect this winter.
  New Years Day, it was 35 degrees. I said I can't run in that, it's just too cold. But I'd never actually tried. I knew I needed to just TRY it, before I could honestly say I can't do it. 
So, I did. And it was awesome. I loved it! I ran 13 miles, faster than ever before! 

Saturday morning I woke up to 25 degrees! 
Again, I knew I couldn't say I can't do it, if I don't at least try!
So I put on a long sleeve shirt, pants, a jacket, my hat and gloves, and I went out there and ran 10 glorious miles! It was wonderful!
 Last week the only part of me that got cold were my toes, that was wearing my Injinji socks. This time I wore my Swiftwick socks. They kept my feet warm the whole time! Super happy!!

So, let me encourage you, YOU CAN DO IT! If someone who despises cold weather as much as I do, can do it, you can too. 

  You guys know how I was struggling on Friday with my juice fast (Day 9, of 21). Well, Saturday night I decided to eat something. My honey and I went to Bonefish Grill. I'd never been there before!
 I got Tilapia, steamed veggies and spaghetti squash.
It was soooo good. But my stomach was sooooo not happy with me. I will spare you the details, but let me just say I spent a lot of time in the bathroom about an hour after eating.
 Honestly, I was surprised it affected me that way. It's not like I ate a big burger with fries! (Yuk)

But, I am back on my juice diet today and plan to finish it out! I'm not stopping, just had a little snafu! 
 I SO appreciate all of your comments and encouragement, and just telling me to listen to my body and don't worry about what people may think. You guys are seriously awesome, and I'm SO thankful for y'all!

How was your weekend? 
Do you mind running in the cold?



Friday, January 4, 2013

Juice Fast Day #9 Hardest Day Yet!

Well, today is Day 9- and it has been horrible!! I feel the same as I do every day. I'm not hungry and feel as energetic as always. But the craving to eat has been overwhelming! I don't know why today should be any different than any other day, but it is!

  Also for the first time I am doubting myself. Doubting that I can really do this for 21 days. Maybe I bit off more than I can chew (haha). Maybe I should've started out at 10 days, or something more attainable. 

  What I want to do is just add in whole grains, nuts and beans. No meat, dairy or sugar. (I guess like the Vegan diet) I want to do that for the remaining 12 days. I might love that so much, that I permanently eat that way. I would love that!! 
 Oh, I would have to fit icecream/froyo in there somehow. ;)

But, I'm so torn. I've already said 21 days. Would I be a failure if I quit early? How many people would say "I told you so". What if it starts getting easier tomorrow, and I quit a day too early?

That's everything that's going through my mind right now.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Virtual Half Marathon PR while juice fasting!

I hope you all had a great NYE! Mine was nice and quiet. We had planned on having some friends over, but plans changed, so it was just our little family. I was glad about it, that way I didn't have to be tempted by any food!
 Yesterday I went out and ran a virtual half marathon for Sandy Hook. I also decided to count this as my first virtual race in Laura's 5 by the 5th Virtual Run Series! It was Day 6 of my juice fast, and I also hadn't run consistently for 2 weeks, and my last long run was almost a month ago, due to hurting my foot! So honestly, I was doubtful I could run 13, and if I did, I thought I would be pretty slow.
Juice in hand, ready to run!!
Another thing, is that it was 35 degrees!! I haven't run in that temp before. I HATE cold weather and snow, so I figured I would be freezing cold and miserable.
 In spite of all that, I just HAD to go run. I couldn't go another day without doing it!
So, I headed out, and I did it!!
I got an 11 minute PR!! It was so awesome! So that means my 5k time would've been 30 minutes. One day soon I'll get under 30!
 The only part of me that got cold were my toes, and they froze after the first mile!
 I even wore my new Injinji socks, which say you can wear them in any climate! But obviously not. :(
I'm sexy and I know it.
Are there any runners socks out there, that will keep my toes warm?

Today is Day 7 of my juice fast. Still going strong!!
Breakfast was a pineapple, beet, carrot and ginger juice. YUMMO!

Funny story- sorry if it's TMI, but it just may help someone...
 Yesterday a couple times after going to the bathroom, I noticed my pee was pink! I immediately googled "pink urine juice fast", and found out it was caused by the beets I've been juicing! That is so strange!! Who'da thought that? Certainly not me!

Have a fabulous day, my friends!!