Monthly Archives: July 2010

Montgomery Half Marathon Training Begins

I’m finally getting back on track since my surgery and its time to start getting down to business with the Half Marathon training. You might remember a couple months ago I wrote a blog about Running with Structure where I mapped out my training plan for the upcoming Montgomery Half Marathon based loosely on Hal Higdon’s Advanced Training plan.

August’s plan should look something like this:

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I haven’t been super strict on myself recently since I’m just trying to get back in the groove of training. I got behind during my recovery. Today was my first “long run” since June.

I met up with a group in Downtown Montgomery this morning for a Half Marathon training run, my schedule called for a 90 minute run but I planned on doing 8 miles in however long it took me. I figured even that would be a stretch since my longest run in over a month has only been 5 miles.

I woke up at 4:00 am, I like to give myself plenty of time to wake up and get my things together before a run. We met at the Alley Bar downtown at 6:00.

I’ve never been good with directions and I don’t know this area of town as well as I should, so I was really glad to have a group to run with.

Our route looked like this:

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We kept a conversational easy pace and I had no trouble.

I ran 8 miles in 1:12. 

 After the run Tim and I headed to the Farmer’s Market for fresh veggies, but we detoured to Mimi’s Cafe for breakfast. We were both HANGRY!

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Do you get freezing cold after exercising? The cool air inside the restaurant felt ice cold, I was shivering. I grabbed my scrub jacket from the car and coffee was definitely a must.

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Bondi band + scrub jacket = a pretty crazy looking combo.

I saved my muffin for later and ordered the Capri Omelet.

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Tim got the French Toast.

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He was lusting after my omelet, so we decided to go splitsies.  My plate ended up looking like this:

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I can assure you my horrible cellphone pictures did not do this meal justice. It was amazing! I’m sure I ate every last calorie back that I burned during my run and probably more.

But who’s counting?

After breakfast we hit the Farmer’s Market. I loaded up on fresh veggies for the week.

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Tomatoes, cucumber, Pink Eye Peas and onions.

Now I’m off to bed, I signed up to work an extra shift tonight. $$$$

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Forget the Farmer’s Market

Today was a good day. We drove down to my parents farm to visit with my parents, my sister and my grandfather. Its about a 2 hour drive. Its been way too long since we’ve made the trip.

I didn’t take many pictures while we were there because I wanted to spend the time I had concentrating on my family. But I did get a couple of pics of my son with my grandfather.

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My grandfather is dying from cancer and sadly this could have been the last time I see him alive. I wanted to make sure I had a picture of him and Lincoln.

It was a good visit. My family made a delicious veggie plate for us for lunch which consisted of:

  • spinach salad
  • fried okra
  • fried eggplant
  • green peas and potatoes
  • Sister Schubert’s Rolls
  • grilled asparagus

I tried to concentrate on the non-fried foods since I overindulged last night on fried green tomatoes and onion rings at home. I did have a few okra though, I can’t resist them.

My Mom and Dad sent me home with a loot of vegetables from their garden as well as 4 1/2 dozen eggs from their hens.

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I feel kinda silly for buying tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market yesterday now.

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A gallon size bag of shelled pecans. (Yes, my sinks are orange.)

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All in all I ended up with:

  • tomatoes
  • banana peppers
  • bell peppers
  • Anaheim peppers (?)
  • a sack of potatoes
  • pecans
  • eggs
  • Coconut Oil
  • blueberries
  • figs
  • eggplants

Who needs a Farmer’s Market? 🙂

I couldn’t possibly eat 10 gallons worth of tomatoes before they went bad even as much as I love my tomato sandwiches so I spent most of the evening preparing them for different uses.

Most of them I froze for use later in chili, soups, etc.

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That’s right, it was 10:30 at night. I’m that dedicated!

We also made a big jar of salsa.

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Tim said I should name this post, “Lord its hard to be humble” … because I kept telling him what was missing from the salsa until we got it perfect. The key was lime juice!

My dad use to sing a song that went … Oh Lord its hard to be humble, when your perfect in every way …

I can’t help it, I’m just good like that.

Now I’m working on a jar of spaghetti sauce with the last of the tomatoes. I think I could go the rest of my life without seeing another tomatoes.

This has been quite a process, but hopefully it will be well worth it.

Wash, blanch, peel, quarter.

That’s what my night consisted of.

I was planning on making some fig bread for breakfast in the morning, but I think its gonna have to wait.

Do you have any experience with Coconut Oil? What is it good for?

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Tokyo & Shakespeare

Last night Tim and I decided to declare it a “family date night”, which basically means that we do something that our whole family will enjoy. Even though we are hardcore saving money right now, we enjoy going out to dinner together on a regular basis and I think we can squeeze that in to the budget.

A little self timer pre-date action …

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I’ve been craving Japanese food lately, so we thought we’d try a new place that we haven’t been to before called Tokyo.

I ordered the Vegetable Hibachi meal and a Fresh Green Roll.

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Avocado, asparagus and cucumber. Mmm! 🙂

For those of you who have wondered how I eat sushi and am a vegetarian. That is your answer. The name sushi actually refers to the rice and not “raw fish”. Its a common misconception.

The Vegetable Hibachi was also delicious.

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I’ve never ordered a vegetable hibachi dish that included tofu. I really liked it. I ate about half and gave the rest to Tim. Although his meal also looks delicious I could see where it might not be very filling for a man.

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After dinner I wanted to hit up Kmart to check out the clearance toys, they were having an extra 50% off the clearance prices. I bought several things for Lincoln for Christmas.

Lincoln had a fun time sword-fighting with Daddy while I shopped. I’m sure everyone around just loves us when we go out.

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The night ended perfectly with icecream.

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Snickers blast with KitKat topping. A little too much for me, I had a couple bites but ending up preferring Tim’s Cake Batter icecream.

This morning the alarm went off super early for a Saturday, at 5:00. I came very close to turning it off and going back to bed. I’ve been really trying to make an effort to get up early and go running with the River Region Runners group at Blount Cultural Park (i.e. Shakespeare). I finally woke up a bit and decided to go for it.

I had a great 4 mile run at a easy conversational 8:58 pace.

After the run I decided to head over to the Farmer’s Market to pick up fresh veggies for the week. On the way over my stomach was talking to me so I just haaaaad to stop at Panera Bread and have breakfast.

I got a Spinach & Artichoke Soufflé.

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It was divine! I just wished I had looked up the calorie content before I ordered it instead of while I was eating it. For that many calories it should have kept me full all day, but I was starving again 3 hours later.

At the Farmer’s Market I picked up some:

  • Green Tomatoes
  • Red Tomatoes
  • Onions
  • Green Beans
  • Pink Eye Peas

I’m going to make an awesome veggie plate for dinner tonight. Tim has requested Fried Green Tomatoes, but insists on making them himself. We’ll see how this goes!

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Short on Time

I haven’t been able to be as devoted to my blogging lately as I would like to be. Since being back at work full time I’m finding myself short on time.

I’ve taken on some extra household projects lately that are pretty time consuming and have really made me really prioritize my time. Basically I’ve been selling my soul on eBay and taking a lot of extra time to plan meals carefully to save money on my grocery bill by utilizing sales and coupons. Plus of course my regular routine of working full time, raising a 2 year old, raising a 36 year old (love you Hun!), and working out 5-6 days a week. Whew!

Basically, please forgive my erratic posting schedule.

Yesterday I had what was shaping up to be a great treadmill run. I’ve been trying to get up early in the mornings to run outside, but I just fail at that over and over. Anyway … I ran at an easy pace and thought about doing 5-6 miles, whatever felt right. At 4.67 miles Tim came to check on me and leaned on the STOP button on the side of the treadmill. I couldn’t get it restarted fast enough, and without it completely resetting. So that was that. I was really disappointed, but atleast I still got a good workout in.

I will leave you with this.

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Make this (click link for recipe):

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Wrap in burrito with shredded cheese, top with salsa and sour cream. You can thank me later!

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Farmer’s Market Dinner

Short post tonight, I’m already getting really sleepy. I’ve been back at work the past 3 nights. I slept for a short while today and then went to the gym for a vigorous 1 hour elliptical workout. I read my book while I worked out, my favorite perk of the elliptical.

Saturday morning after I got off my 12 hour shift at work I headed over to the Farmer’s Market that I promised myself I would shop at as soon as I was earning money again.

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I bought local bell peppers, tomatoes and potatoes. I really wanted to buy a few other things, but I was so exhausted after work that I decided not to walk around any longer.

Tonight I made a Farmer’s Market inspired dinner.

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Stuffed Bell Peppers with Sage Roasted New Potatoes.

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We also splurged on a $6.99 bottle of wine. 😛

I told myself last week that I wasn’t going to drink any more alcohol until after my Half Marathon in October. What was I thinking? That can never happen. I drank about 1/2 of the bottle. Probably explains the sleepiness.

Now I’m off to sell anything and everything possible on eBay. Have a great night 🙂

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Back At It

Very quick post just to let every know I am heading back to work tonight. Yaaaaay paycheck! I’m not super exciting about actually having to work. I quite like running my household for a living, but alas it is necessary for the time being.

I’m going to continue to strive to live in a very frugal and money saving way even though I’ll be back at work. Paying off debt, starting an IRA and savings are definitely high on my priority list these days.

Speaking of saving money, Tim and I just called our cable company and were able to shave $35 off of our month bill simply by getting rid of a few channels we never watch anyway. Its amazing what you find out you are paying for and not utilizing when you start paying attention.

Today for lunch I made a quick and cheap, Kitchen Sink Pasta Bake. The idea was inspired by my friend’s Cheap Eats Pasta Bake. I substituted some of the canned vegetables for fresh vegetables, decreased the amount of cheese and used what I had at home on hand and I ended up with this:

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By looking at it it doesn’t seem very spectacular. Basically it just looks like Mac & Cheese with some peas thrown in for good measure, but it actually contains:

  • Frozen Peas
  • Fresh Corn
  • Fresh Broccoli
  • Butternut Squash Puree

As well as cream of mushroom soup and a little shredded cheese.

Super cheap and tons of leftovers.

Tim and I calculated that this meal costs about $0.57 per serving with the ingredients we used. And that is for a very generous serving size. I served it with a side salad. We will be eating (or freezing) leftovers for days!

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Domestic Diva

Caitlin’s post about forgotten appliances got me excited to pull a few things out of my cabinets today. I would say that I use the majority of my appliances a fair bit. I only have a very few that get totally neglected.

Some of them just didn’t end up being all they were cracked up to be, like the George Foreman grill. I’m sure its more practical than I think, but really … how does a vegetarian utilize this appliance enough to make it worth having? I’ve made California Grilled Veggie Sandwiches on it a couple times, but its use is limited to me.

Another appliance that I absolutely love, but don’t feel that I get to use as often as I would like is my KitchenAid Stand Mixer.

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I use it when I make homemade cookies and mashed potatoes, but thats about it. I know that I could utilize it more. Maybe I’ll do some research on some recipes I could make to use my mixer more.

This morning I decided to pull out my waffle iron and Blendtec blender and put them to use.

I made Lincoln a “waffle sandwich”. I had some leftover puree from the last time that I spread on bread and pressed in the waffle iron. The puree is a combination of cottage cheese, butternut squash, brown sugar and cinnamon.

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The idea came from Jessica Seinfield’s book Deceptively Delicious.

I’ve been wanting to use my blender to make a Green Monster for the last couple of days and I keep forgetting. Luckily this morning I didn’t forget because this was the best GM ever!

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It contained:

  • A huge handful of spinach (I never measure, and I’ve found that no matter how much you put you can’t taste it so I really pack it in)
  • one banana
  • 5 frozen strawberries
  • handful of fresh blueberries
  • 1/4 of ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup almond milk

At the last moment I decided to add a tablespoon of natural peanut butter for protein. It was a good decision!

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Sometimes I find that GMs aren’t filling enough to keep the hunger at bay long until lunch. This one definitely did and I owe it all to the peanut butter!

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Just to round out the usage of my appliance family I decided to make a loaf  lump of homemade bread in my bread machine also.

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I always have a problem cutting my homemade bread slices uneven. I read on Hillbilly Housewife a couple days ago to cut the bread with an electric knife. Sounds so simple, but I most likely would have never thought of it. I hope it helps make even slices for my beloved tomato sandwiches!

Edited to add:

I’ve finally found a useful way to use my electric knife now that I won’t be using it on Turkey.

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Slicing the bread was so simple and easy with the electric knife and I was finally able to achieve thin, even slices.

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Why have I never thought of this before!?! I will probably never buy store-bought bread again. This was just way too easy.

I stored the bread in an old WhiteWheat bag for safe keeping.

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I love knowing exactly what’s in my food. That is one major benefit of making as much as possible from scratch.

That wraps up my review of appliances for the day. Hope you enjoyed it 😛

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