Sloth Life

****Once again…Can’t get photos to load…..Getting new computer THIS week *pinky promise****

This week I started my 24 days of vacation, and lets just say….I’m loving the sloth life. A ton of sleeping and eating….not a whole lot of exercising. Half marathon in a week and a half and I am no where near ready….nevermind ready to PR.
I am also stuck in glasses for a few weeks-so I feel even LESS motivated (if that were possible) to do anything sweaty. Im just telling myself “You must need all this sleep….right?” Need to get my butt in gear ASAP!

Day 1- Canada Day: Slept all day recovering from nights. Ate at a gluten free burger at Fuddruckers. Walked aprox. 10km according to google maps along the river, leisurely pace. Watched fireworks.

Day 2- Slept most of the day after being awake most of the night-having a hard time getting off of nights. Ran errands. Signed up for Scrubscriptions and Ipsy as well as a trial subscription(free) for honest company. Ordered EE Burito for dinner- amazing gluten free mexican food. Watch The Fall Season 1 (5 episodes) on Netflix with the hubbie-so creepy but sooooo good!Blew off my speed work-it is crazy hot out today, and I slept way too long. Excuses, Excuses.

Day 3- Eat a bunch of cold rolls and fruit for breakfast-all I feel like eating is vegetation and tacos today. Laze around home, including a fabulous mid-afternoon nap before heading for a massage[I've found an amazing gal thanks to a coworker's referrals]. Dinner with Dad at Kongo Cafe[Jamacian Food].I promise I’ll start running every day tomorrow? [I have 18km planned for tomorrow morning...]

 

Epic Fail

Well friends and faithful readers, epic fail is a slight understatement. Crashed and burned is more like it. Today SHOULD  be day 12 of the no sugar, no refined carb challenge I set out to accomplish. Well….lets just say-epic failure. On day 9 was date day- I was inadequately hydrated and inadequately nutritionised (yep, its a word;) )…and I crashed. I was utterly starving by the time our 9:55pm movie started and ended up ordering popcorn (with butter) and a coke. Once we left the movie, I ordered an McFlurry at McDonalds. Did I mention I am allergic to cow’s milk? ;) I spent most of saturday running to the washroom and feeling utterly terrible. Basically, this is how the end of the end started. While I didn’t survive the 30 days, I have cut back my refined carb and sugar intake immense amounts. So in picking myself up and moving on, I am still trying to reduce my sugar and refined carb intake, but I am no longer challenging myself to cut it out completely. This challenge was HARD. So hard. It is incredibly eye opening to see the hold that sugar has on me. I am now more aware of what I am consuming, how much and when I am consuming, and if I am getting enough water. I successfully did a long run(15.18km + 2km walk) on Saturday on which I fuelled with dates and banana rather than chews, and I plan to continue using dried sugar-free fruit to fuel my runs from now on. So, there you have it friends, thanks for supporting me anyways (because I know you all will), and if any of you are sugar and carb free right now-I applaud you. SO so hard.

Week One

NOTE: I APOLOGIZE FOR THE BORING, NO PHOTO POST-MY COMPUTER WON’T LOAD MY PHOTOS FOR WHATEVER REASON!

I am officially one week into my refined carb/sugar free challenge. Overall, it has been great and I have felt great. I had one minor pitfall, but I am back on track. To make up for the pitfall-Im going to do all of June rather than only  until June 29th. I’ve been keeping notes on my phone so I could give you guys the play-by-play on how it is going. I have also been tracking what I am eating on an app on my phone just for curiosity sake to see how my macro-nutrient consumption effects how I feel.

Day One: I was travelling back home from a trip to my parent’s house for my Dad’s 50th birthday. I only ate a little water melon before leaving, so I was starving once I had driven about an hour and a half. I was suprised at how easy it was to find a salad bar in small town saskatchewan for lunch. I picked up a huge salad with chicken and eggs + strawberries + orange juice. On the next leg of my journey I picked up a sugar free coconut water at a gas station and indulged in the strawberries since I didn’t touch them before. I drank 3 bottles of water on the trip. At home I made a big salad for dinner with bacon, chicken, egg, and black soy beans (couldn’t find regular black beans at the grocery store for some reason). I topped the salad with a ‘homemade vegan ranch’….turned out more like a creamy dill sauce. A mango for dessert. I also juiced a cucumber, beet, carrot, ginger and spinach for a snack with a banana later. I felt SUPER full essentially all day. Macro Nutrients: Fats 71g, Carbs 187g, Protein 77g

Day 2: Worked a 12 hour day shift. Felt exhausted pretty much the entire day. Ate one halls candy by accident-didn’t even realize what I was doing until it was gone. Craved chips mid afternoon, craved protein like CRAZY in the evening. Once home from work, the hubbie brought me home a bison burger in a lettuce wrap with tomato, onion, dill pickle and mustard. I also realize I am WAY underhydrated- only drank 1.5L all day-chug some water with the burger and am feeling much more satisfied. Maco Nutrients: Fats 75g, Carbs 167g, Protein 100g

Day 3: Worked another 12 hour day shift. Craving protein MAJORLY all day. Ate another lettuce burger for dinner. More energy today than the last two. Macro Nutrients: Fats 73g, Carbs 163g, Protein 91g

Day 4: Yet again, 12 hour day shift. Super tired from work today. Meet husband for dinner out and completely give into temptation- ate fries and a gluten free bun burger…oh and dairy-cheese dip. I really went off the deep end. After tracking my nutrients I realize I only ate 800 calories throughout the day, no wonder I fell. Need to keep up my nutrition through the day so I go get these little binge moments. Macro Nutrients: Fats 102g, Carbs 233g, Protein 87g

Day 5: Worked a 12 hour night shift. Felt generally okay, a little bloated, perhaps from the carbs. Skin is going crazy today. Made a delicious banana chocolate icecream with frozen banana, dates, cococa powder all blended up in the blender. Good through most of the night- craved salty carbs. Ate a few bananas through the night and felt better. Macro Nutrients: Fats 30g, Carbs 206g, Protein 44g

Day 6: Came off the night shift tired (all nighter, duh.) Made a burger at home (I don’t know why all I want to eat is burgers this week!) and roasted a potato. Potato tasted WAY TOO SWEET so I only ate a few bites. When I woke up from sleeping all day all I wanted to eat was mango. Went to costco and bought two cases of different varieties. Ate 4 mangos for dinner with a TON of water, feeling very satisfied. Realizing I was eating too few carbs maybe? More carbs, less fat maybe? We’ll see how that works out. Macro Nutrients: Fats 70g, Carbs 230g, Protein 61g

Day 7: Slept a LONG TIME. (7 hours yesterday in the day + 10 hours at night) Woke up feeling VERY refreshed. I am a little dehydrated. Guzzle a litre of water and eat 3 mangos throughout the morning….On to week two.

Buh-Bye Sugar!

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Due a general interest in increasing my energy, mood and health, I have decided to challenge myself to one month free of refined sugar or carbs. If you remeber from last summer- I began seeing a naturopath. Part of my journey to health involved cutting out refined sugar and carbs (as well as about 15 allergens and caffiene) for 6 weeks….but slowly over the year all the sugar snuck it’s way back in. I have been indulging in soda WAY more than appropriate (having a soda stream dosen’t help), as well as other ‘junk’. Being summer, it’s the easiest season to eat healthy…so why not! I’ll be travelling this week, so I am planning to start my plan May 29 and go until June 19. Wish me luck!

As I learned last year around this time, success is all in the planning. I know that cravings will come and I need to be prepared for both salty and sweet snacks. I also will need to amp up protein and fat to keep me satifsfied. I will try to share my meal-planning in case any of you want to follow along!=) I work shift work, so if I can do it…all of you 9-5er’s certainly can as well!=) FYI: I usually plan leftovers for lunches, hence no lunch categorie. For the 12 hour work days- I also bring leftovers for one meal plus eggs for another and tons of fruit and veg typically.

Breakfasts:

Omelettes (2-3 eggs + salt + pepper + almond milk + spinach + onion + mushroom + pepper + tomato)

Egg Cupcakes (bake shredded yam hash + sausage + eggs in cupcake tins in oven)

Monkey Salad (cashews + coconut chips + banana)

Fruit

Coffee and Vegan Creamer (Coconut Milk + dates + vanilla)

Snacks:

Monkey Salad

Fruit

Boiled Eggs with Salt

Dill Pickles

Turkey Wraps (Turkey + avocado + spinach)

Dinners:
May 29: Travelling, 7km run- Cobb Salad (bacon, egg, rotisserie chicken, tomato, avocado, cucumber, lettuce, black beans + vegan ranch)
May 30: 12 hr Day Shift
May 31: 12 hr Day Shift

June 1: 12 hr Day Shift

June 2: 12 hr Night Shift, Yoga- Baked Salmon (lemon, salt, pepper) + Kale/Mushrooms/Onion + Yam with coconut oil

June 3: 8km Run(last 4 race pace)- Yam Hash, Eggs, Sautee Kale or Spinach

June 4: 4km Run- Salad + Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken + Guacamole

June 5: 16km Run- Creamy Spiced Cauliflower Soup

Happy Eating!

Dairy/Gluten Free Eggs Bene

Cooking is a funny thing for me. It’s in my soul. Some people say they were born to nurse, or born to run, or born to paint; I think I was born to cook. I don’t remeber an age that I wasn’t in the kitchen helping my Dad whip up big dishes full of love and palate tingling excitement. On my deepest, darkest days cooking brings a sense of calm that makes me feel whole. Memories of a beautiful simplistic childhood. One dish can have so much thought, hardwork, love. As the clinche says, it’s the blood, sweat and tears.

For the first time in months, I have a recipe to share. As I woke at 3:32am (not abnormal the day after working nights) and the rain drizzled down I felt that urning inside of me to be challenged; to be with my family; to eat. Poached eggs and hollandaise sauce have intimidated me from the beginning of time. Dramatic? Maybe a little. Any history I had with the two produced memories of too-lemony-greasy sauce and undercooked, falling apart eggs from amature attempts or terrible diners. While neither of these were things I grew up eating, I grew up cooking. I take pride in conquering the seemingly impossible [Oh that mind game...] in the kitchen. Thus, today was the day. My husband was (obviously) still in bed, so it was just me, Julia Child, numerous food blogs and 3 dozen eggs.

Fortunately, it ended up being much simplar than I ever anticipated, and much more decadent than I could have ever imagined. I didn’t waste even one egg. I attempted to do some quality photography along the way but lighting on the dreary early morning, and lack of a camera stand kabunked that idea.

Dairy and Gluten Free Eggs Bene

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Serves Two

8 Stems of Asparagus

Olive oil

Salt & Pepper

4 egg yolks

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup dairy-free solid fat (I used 1/2 vegan margarine and 1/2 coconut oil)

4 whole eggs

First, get your asparagus rolling. Chop off the ends, rinse and place on a foil-lined pan. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and pop in a 375 degree oven until tender.

Wisk egg yolks and lemon juice until fluffy and doubled in size. Next, over low heat, wisk mixture continuously-being careful not to boil or overheat- until starting to foam around the edges. At this point, begin drizzling in melted fat SLOWLY until incorperated. You may need to remove the mixture from the heat for the last half as to not scramble your eggs- I knew to do this as my egg mixture had thickened to my desired custard consistency. Once the fat has been incorperated, add a pinch of cayenne pepper and a pinch of salt. Taste and season accordingly. Cover with a dish cloth and set aside.

Bring 3 inches water to a boil, and then turn down to less than a simmer-you should only have a few bubbles but a lot of steam. Crack eggs into spice bowls. Lower the bowl to the edge of the water and slowly slip in the egg. Cook for 3 minutes for soft, 3 1/2 minutes for medium soft, and 4 1/4 minutes for hard. Pull out of water and submerge in an icebath to stop cooking process.

Top asparagus with two eggs, and desired amount hollondaise sauce and enjoy the best breakfast of your life. I served mine with bacon and cantalope. If you have leftover sauce (you should)- just add a dash of hot water and wisk to bring back to life to use at a later time.

Gopher Attack Half Marathon

ImageHappy Easter! Wow! We did it. The first half marathon of the year has finally come, and passed. Grey Robin, G and I travelled to Regina on thursday afternoon to prepare for our race the next day. G and I were running the half marathon (21.1km) [G's FIRST half marathon], and Grey Robin was running her first full marathon (42.2km). I am beyond thrilled with how G and Grey Robin did! As for myself, this was a personal WORST for time, but we were batteling 50km/hr headwinds as well as rain/freezing rain. I used muscles I didn’t even know existed getting through the wind. By about 16km I had severe shooting pains in my right knee-which was strange since I didn’t have any injury issues during training-I think it may have been due to the extra effort needed to battle the wind. I ended up finnishing in 2:58. VERY SLOW, but I am still SO proud. My goal was soley to finish, and in those conditions it was incredibly hard. I am so proud of myself mentally. I didn’t hit a wall, or ever feel like I couldn’t do it. I was optimistic through the entire race. Yay! The mental battle is always harder than the physical battle for me. I actually starting ugly crying as I crossed the finish line because I was so proud. We didn’t end up getting a group picture, but G and I snapped a selfie quickly before starting…I was so lucky to be able to run the first half with the love of my life.

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While I am sick now with a throat/chest viral thing, I am already getting excited for my next race-hopefully May? I just NEED to kick the bad time in the butt!

Note: I didnt get to see Grey Robin cross the finish line….devestating or what?! I had to go to the washroom and held it for so long and when I finally decided to go was when she came in. DARN IT! 

Race Jitters!

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Well, time is beginning to escape me! ONLY ELEVEN DAYS until the first half marathon of the season. I have one more long run and the a week of rest. My long run last week went exceptionally well thanks to some fantastic friends. I had one friend join me for the first 10km, and the second friend joined in at about 7km for 6km which brought me up to 13km total with friends. I was then on my own to run home after dropping off friend #2 at her car. My watch malfunctioned for about 1.5-2km, so I ended up running somewhere between 17.25 and 17.75 km total. I felt great through the entire run, and I think I have finally mastered fueling! This was an afternoon run, so I was able to sleep in a bit and then I enjoyed some delicious Coach’s Oats- Oh She Glows Cookbook Apple Pie style!=) [I loveeeeee cooked apple dishes since I am allergic to raw ones.] If you haven’t tried Coach’s Oats, DO IT. I found them at costco and they aren’t rolled oats (no gluten)…rather unprocessed oats! Healthier and they cook in just a few more minutes!

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I ate these about 3-4 hours before the run topped with drippy almond butter, maple syrup, shredded coconut and sunflower seeds on top! YUM. I drank 2 litres of water + 1.5 Nuun tablets before the run. As for mid-run fueling, I took a package of watermelon Gu gummies. I also brought some shot blocks just in case but didn’t use them. I drank nuun from the camelback whenever I was thirsty (750ml H20 + 2 Nuun tabs) and started eating gummies at 4.6km. By 15km I had run out of water, but I was close enough to home that it was okay, and I had eaten all my gummies. Zero stomach yuck during or after the run! Sucess! My body felt tired, but no aches or pains. The next couple days I did have some back pain, but I think this is due to my lack of abs and could be easily cured with a massage! Anyways, long winded……I am excited to conquer the first race of the year!

Today I am working a night shift, so I am spending the day making sushi, watching HGTV (the hubbie got suckered into buying cable for 6 months *roll eyes*) and meal planning while waiting for G to get home from his first day at his new job!=)

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I’ve planned our meals for up until race day! Yay!! Trying to plan in some indulgences so that I dont go crazy and eat fast food or something right before the race- healthIER indulgences. 

I go on vacation starting tomorrow morning, so I will be home every day to make food, stretch and do some easy runs. Grocery day is always friday, so I have a ton of freezer stuff to use before then.

Here’s the plan:

Friday- Pad Thai

Saturday- Spaghettie Squash with ground turkey + mushrooms + peppers

Sunday- Marinated Steak (Ive been promising G for weeks) + Strawberry Spinach Salad + Baked Potatoes

Monday- Leftovers + Potato Omelet Breakfast Bites (pinterest) for breakfasts + One Bowl Vegan Chocolate Cake

Tuesday- Vegan Cheesy Alfredo + GF noodles + Zuchinni

Wednesday- Homemade chicken fingers (crushed rice cereal and spices) + Homemade yam fries + corn

Its all on the up and up from here!! I can’t wait to run this race/prepare for this race as well as watch my husband earn his first half-marathon medal + one of my besties, Grey Robin, earns her first full-marathon medal!