Monthly Archives: October 2009

Greek Yogurt Giveaway!

Go get your Greek Yogurt! Now! Do it!

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Day 2

I’m too exhausted tonight to write much, but I took some great pictures that I wanted to share. We went to the Smoky Mountain National Park today as I mentioned in an earlier post, these are some shots I got.

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Tonight for dinner we decided to stay at the cabin and cook out on the grill. I was pretty nervous after seeing the 4 bears earlier this evening on the back porch but they decided not to join us for dinner thankfully. We made: BBQ chicken breasts, grilled mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes and pineapple, creamed corn and leftover rolls from the steak place last night. It was delish! It was just exactly what I wanted and it was much cheaper and more nutritional than going out to eat.

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After dinner I was craving something sweet so we drove down the mountain to Downtown Gatlinburg to find something to satisfy my craving. There were all kinds of fudge shops, ice cream shops, candy stores, and bakeries. I almost decided on a funnel cake, but at the last minute I changed my mind and we ended up at Ben & Jerrys. I’ve been craving pumpkin lately and Ben & Jerrys had Pumpkin Cheesecake Icecream.

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It was heavenly! Now if I could just figure out a way to make myself not feel guilty for eating it. I keep going back and forth through my mind between “You are on vacation, relax! You can work it off next week” and “You don’t need that and you are not hungry. Have you learned nothing?” I wish I could find a better balance.

I still haven’t found any good running spots. I guess I’m gonna be doing some trips up and down the staircase tomorrow to get my cardio in if I don’t figure out something quickly. I’d really hate to miss my long run for the week on Sunday, but if I can’t find a place that I can safely run with a baby stroller then I’m just gonna have to put it off until I get back home.

But for now … I’m going to retire to the bedroom with a good book. Goodnight!

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Bears!

Hot Tub + Sangria = Heaven.

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Seeing 4 bears where you were just relaxing with your Sangria = super scary but super cool.

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I had just gotten out of the hot tub and was drying off when I looked up and saw that! A momma bear and her 3 babies. They came really close to the porch and I was able to get a few decent pictures.

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We went to The Smoky Mountain National Park today. We were planning on riding our bikes around Cade’s Cove, running our 3 miles for our 1/2 Marathon Training and having a picnic in the park. Things didn’t work out exactly as I had planned though. Turns out the road around Cade’s Cove where bicycles are allowed is very narrow and its also a road shared with cars … very slow moving cars. There is no way we could have had fun biking around at 2 mph pulling Lincoln in the bike trailer. It also wasn’t a very good place to run for the same reason.

We ended up driving through the park and then heading to the picnic area. We ran laps around the picnic area to complete our 3 miles. I have to say that I was very disappointed. I really thought there were going to be lots of great places for biking and running in the park. I felt like everyone was staring at me the entire time I was running and it was really awkward and uncomfortable. I don’t know what I’m gonna do tomorrow when I have another 3 miles to run and then 7 miles on Sunday. We aren’t having much luck finding any runner friendly places around here, I’m sure there are some … I just don’t know where to look.

What do you do to find places to run when you are out of town?

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Vacation Day 1 – Done!

Tim and I woke up early yesterday morning at 4:30 am to get ready to leave for our Gatlinburg vacation. I wanted to leave home at 6:00 am, but of course nothing is ever on time when you have a baby. We didn’t end up leaving until a little after 7:00, but who’s counting?

The trip was suppose to take about 6-7 hours driving time, but I knew we would have to make fairly frequent stops to let Lincoln stretch his legs. The last time we tried to travel with him was to Destin, FL (only 4 hours) and he screamed a good portion of the way. I decided this time that no matter what happened I was going to make a conscious effort to be patient with him even if it took us 10 hours to drive.

I could not have been more impressed with the way the trip went. Lincoln slept for the first 2 hours of the trip, then we stopped for snacks and a bathroom break. Luckily we brought our secret weapon that we swore before we were parents we would never have … a DVD player in the car. With that he was entertained until lunch time.

I really wanted to stop somewhere new and exciting for lunch that I had never been before. But hunger hit me hard and fast and the only thing nearby was Cracker Barrel. I ordered grilled chicken fingers, green beans, whole kernel corn and sweet potato casserole.

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Excuse the hair, it was raining.

After lunch Lincoln fell back asleep and slept all the way to Knoxville, only an hour from the cabin. I took some random pictures on the way down out of boredom. Here are a couple shots of the pretty fall colors on the way and our first view of the mountains in the distance.

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We finally found the way to the cabin thanks to TomTom our GPS navigation system. I was absolutely in love. I started getting worried on the way up the mountain because there were some pretty shabby looking cabins around, but there were some really nice ones as well. I didn’t get any pics of the outside, but here are a few of the inside.

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After getting settled in we spent a few minutes in the hot tub, and then got ready and decided on where to go for dinner. We chose The Peddler Steakhouse. It was rated the #1 place to eat in Gatlinburg so we thought we’d give it a try.

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Tim and I both ordered the Blackened Tuna with Hollandaise sauce, and I got sauteed mushrooms as my side item. All entrees come with unlimited trips to their enormous salad bar and a basket of yeast rolls. We ordered a bottle of Kendall Jackson Pinot Noir to help us relax after a long day in the car.

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I ordered my tuna medium rare and it was more like medium well, but it had good flavor and the salad bar, mushrooms, and wine made up for what the tuna was lacking. I also stole Lincoln’s tartar sauce and it was HEAVENLY on the tuna. I’ve never had tartar sauce that tasted so good!

Unfortunately Tim and I ended up eating most of our meal alone because Lincoln was exhausted and finally had the meltdown I anticipated all day. While one of us ate the other walked him around the restaurant. A waitress (not ours) saw that we were having a really hard time and she came over and offered to walk with him while we enjoyed our dinner. Normally I would never let someone do that, but I was tired, frustrated and hungry and it sounded like a great idea at the time. We were able to finish up our meal and enjoy our wine. We really appreciated her help!

Today we are going to the Smoky Mountain National Park for a picnic, bike riding and my scheduled 3 mile run.

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What’s Going On?

I don’t know what the deal is lately, but I have completely lost my willpower when it comes to eating. Thankfully so far it hasn’t caught up with me on the scale yet, but I’m sure my day is coming. Lately I have been eating anything and everything in sight, especially at work. I was doing so good at being strong and resisting temptation but all of a sudden I’ve been chowing down on cookie cake, Halloween candy, Chex Mix (OMFG the Chex Mix!!), and pretty much anything else I can get my hands on. I wish I knew what the problem was.

I wonder if I’m subconsciously sabotaging myself because I’m so close to my goal. Hmmm …

Thankfully I’ve still been doing great on exercising. The 1/2 Marathon training program is going great so far. Today I did another 4 mile Fartlek, actually it was really only about 3 miles of Fartlek and 1 mile of easy running. I cut myself a break on that one though because I feel mentally and physically exhausted from some situations that I have been dealing with the last couple of days and not sleeping well, and I know thats why I tired out in my run so quickly.

The good news is that fall vacation begins NOW! Tomorrow we will be packing and preparing for our trip to the mountains. I couldn’t be more excited! I can’t wait to relax in the hottub with a glass (or bottle) of wine, picnic in the Smoky Mountain National Park, run in the mountains, grill out, and just spend time with my family without any other worries.

I don’t have any food pics today so I’ll leave you with this picture of my son and I snoozing in his crib together. Isn’t he the cutest thing you ever saw? I love that boy!

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This is Dedication!

Getting up at 6:45 on a Sunday morning to go run 6 miles in 40 degree weather = dedication.

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I tried out a new route today. I’ve been getting bored with running in the same neighborhood all of the time, so I thought I’d try something new. I parked my car at my mother in laws house and ran in her neighborhood. I drove the route in my car first to see it if would be safe and I saw that it was a little hilly, but nothing I couldn’t handle. There was one stretch that was on a moderately busy road, but it was only about 1/4 of a mile or so.

I don’t think I’ll do this route again, atleast not anytime soon. The hills were hillier than I previously thought and really wrecked my knees, I got chased by 2 packs of dogs, and there was more traffic than I was comfortable with. I guess its back to the drawing board!

I like to think of my runs as being in one of three categories:

  1. I could have run much longer.
  2. I couldn’t have taken one more step.
  3. I could have gone farther, but I’m glad I didn’t have to.

Today was definitely a 3. I could have gone farther, but I was really happy to stop also. I’ve never had knee pain before while I was running, but I think those days are over. For the past week or so my knees have been very achey, not excrutiating but just uncomfortable. I thought maybe its time for me to start icing my knees after my runs.

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I wanted something really filling to eat for breakfast this morning and I’ve been really craving oatmeal (specifically oatmeal with pumpkin puree, but I haven’t bought the pumpkin yet). I made 2 packets of Maple and Brown Sugar oatmeal and added 1/2 a banana, Agave nectar and 1 Tbsp of chunky peanut butter. I think it was the best thing I’ve ever put in my mouth! (It was 9.5 points though).

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I’m going back to work tonight for 3 more nights, and then we are off on Thursday morning for our fall vacation to Gatlinburg. I’m so excited!!!

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Great Pumpkin Race Recap

My alarm went off at 4:30 this morning and I REALLY didn’t want to get up. I stretched my legs in bed for a few minutes, and then the next thing I knew the alarm was going off again. I fell back asleep! Thank goodness Tim set his alarm clock also. He didn’t want to get up at 4:30, so he set his for 5:00. If he hadn’t done that we would have probably slept right through the race.

We got ready and drove the 45 minutes or so to where the race was located. We ended up getting there way earlier than we needed to. It was freezing cold and barely light outside. We picked up our race packs and headed back to the car to warm up before the race started. When it got close to starting time we jogged up and down the road to get the blood flowing and posed for a picture by the Spinners Park sign. Unfortunately we didn’t have anyone to take our picture together so this is the best we could do.

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This was both mine and Tim’s first 8Ks. We were both really excited and nervous. I knew I could run the distance (5 miles), I just didn’t know if I could do it in a decent time. Its funny how my thought process has changed over the last couple of months. When I ran my first 5K in September my goal was just to finish, now I want to beat my personal times. My personal goal that I set for myself before going into the race today was to try my very best to maintain a 8 minute mile pace.

Just before the race started we met up with a few friends that we know from Spin Class at the Y. It was nice to see familiar faces.

The gun went off without any warning and caught me off guard. The race route took us through downtown Prattville. There was one monster hill right where the 8K split off from the 5K, but for the most part the course was nice and flat. My only complaint about the course was that there were a few spots where the directions weren’t very well marked, and I kept getting confused. At one point there was only one guy I could see infront of me and no one behind me. I started to wonder if I was still running the right direction, and just then the guy infront of me stopped and started stretching his legs on the curb. I pulled out my earphones and asked him if we were going the right way, he didn’t know either. Thankfully we were.

I came across the finish line and made a conscious effort to try to notice the time on the clock. As best as I could tell it said 40:54 or something close. Of course I forgot to stop my Garmin again, so my information is a little off from the official race results (as usual), but here’s what I got:

Distance – 5.17 miles (Not sure where the extra distance came from.)

Mile 1 – 7:55
Mile 2 – 7:54
Mile 3 – 8:04
Mile 4 – 7:58
Mile 5 – 7:56

After the race Tim and I walked around the Arts and Crafts Show and looked around until the Awards Ceremony started. It was a really good thing that we didn’t bring any cash with us because there were Funnel Cakes, Gyros, Kabobs, Roasted Corn on The Cob, Boiled Peanuts and every other treat you can imagine being sold. Normally we don’t stay for the awards ceremony but for some reason I thought there was a possibility that I might win an award today. I doubted I would, but I secretly hoped so.

Turns out I did win an award, I placed 2nd in my age division! Yay for my first award!

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I’ve been needing some new running shoes for quite a while now. I bought a pair online a couple weeks ago and ran once in them and just really felt like they weren’t for me, so I sent them back. Unfortunately we don’t have a running store in my city, but I have heard that McClendon Sports has a very knowledgable staff when it comes to running shoes. I decided to treat myself and go check it out today.

I was very impressed with the woman who was helping me. She looked at my feet, asked me a few questions and brought out 2 pairs of shoes for me to try. I tried them on, she felt on my feet and watched me run across the store and back. The first pair I tried was Brooks Ghost 2, I loved them! My current shoes are Brooks and I have always loved them also, but they run small and I bought a 1/2 size smaller than I should have. The 2nd pair I tried on were Mizuno’s. They were bright orange and I really loved the color and the way they looked. I tried them on and they felt weird, but I thought maybe I could make do since I liked the way they looked so much. I ran halfway across the store and knew I couldn’t buy them. They felt horrible on my feet.

They aren’t the prettiest thing in the world, but meet my new running partners:

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Sundays are going to be my long run days with my new training program that I started, and tomorrow I’m scheduled to run 6 miles. I can’t wait to break these babies in!

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