Sistah Scrambles and Salad Beasts

It was yet another enjoyable day on the West Coast, a little rainy to start but the sun came out for the end of the day. On the workout front, I got in a lovely 10km run on the sea wall and nearly lost my life at the hand of a crazy Pilates instructor during my last day of a week membership to Exhale Studio. However, I did enjoy the class.. when it was over!

One of my favourite things about staying with my sis in her adorable bachelor suite downtown this holiday has been the opportunity I have had to cook for her and share some random and hopefully delicious healthy eats. She is teaching dance 6 days a week and is not a kitchen lover at the best of times, which was evident by her nearly bare cupboards and empty fridge I found upon my arrival. Throughout the last week, I have done my very best to inspire her in the kitchen, and whether or not it is actually working, I think she (well her belly) is enjoying the attempts!

I was so proud when I received this text from her when I was out spending the afternoon with some friends..

“I just found some chia seeds for $6.99 and flax seeds for $5.99. Is that good?”

Music to my ears, sistah!

Sistah Scramble

A very easy, tasty and satisfying lunch (or breakfast or dinner, for that matter).. especially for those on a budget!

Start by gathering up all the random veggies you can find, chop em’ up and heat in a frying pan with garlic, olive oil and some spices.

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Spinach, onion, mushroom, brocc, egg whites, cheese

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Skillet time..

Once the veggies are soft and fragrant, turn the heat to medium low and add your scrambled eggs (in this case, I used egg whites)..

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Cook on medium low, scraping the sides of the pan frequently, until the eggs have cooked and everything is scrambled up… Once the eggs are cooked, sprinkle on your cheese and heat until melted through..

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If you’re like me and like your eggs well done, pop the skillet under the broiler for a minute or two.. ** Note: When doing this make sure the handle is not in the oven or you may start a fire and damage your roommate’s beautiful Paderno frying pan.. not that I know from experience or anything!

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Serve with toast, grab your sistah and enjoy!

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Salad Beasts

What is a salad beast you ask? (For the record I stole this name from the amazing Fitnessista)

I will define it as “a salad on steroids which contains anything and all things nutritious and delicious”.

Tonight, our sistah salad beasts look a little something like this..

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Spinach, onion, brocc, tomato, canned salmon, quinoa, roasted sweet pot and parsnip, black beans, tomato sauce (sissy has no dressing or balsamic vin.. sin I know!) and cheese…. BAM!

… Or shall I say ROOOOARRR!

Nighty nighty from the West Coast!

What’s your favourite thing to do for your siblings when visiting them!? Although I love to cook and shop… cleaning is a different story!

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One Year Later…

HAPPY 2011!!

Last night at the Broadway Running room it felt oddly, but amazingly like the first day of a new school year, that is with the exception of age and planned out first day of school outfits! I couldn’t help but laugh at the excitement, hugs and flowing conversations that continued before, during and after a lovely 7km sea wall run.

Also, last night was extra special because it marked the “friendaversary” of the night Carolyn, Amelia and I met on the false creek seawall. After an awesome run, and celebration gathering with the Babe Patrol minus AF, I couldn’t help but be thankful for the decision I made one year ago and whatever it was that made me enter the doors of the Broadway Running Room.

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Although I will not technically be in this winter’s marathon clinic (commuting from St Catharines would be a tiny bit difficult!), I will be absorbing Dave’s knowledge vicariously through the BP. Although I’m sad about this, I am looking forward to settling into my Boston training in St Catharines… that is if I ever get back there! I have decided, due the fact that Vancouver is amazing and playing house with my sissy is too much fun, I am not returning to Brock until Tuesday. This means I am so excited and grateful to have four more days to play, run and get my school work done in the city.

On that note, the sun is peaking through the clouds and the sea wall is calling my name!

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Enjoy your day! Smile

PS: I am terribly sorry for my lack of blogging in the last um… almost two months! Due to exams, a California family vacation, Christmas and NYE excitement, and BP reunions.. I have struggled to find the mojo to write about it all. As always, I am now vowing to post on the regular and find the time to finally implement my ideas for this little bloggy. Wish me luck, and I would love to hear any thoughts, input or advice you have related to this endeavour!

“Let’s be grateful for those who give us happiness; they are the charming gardeners who make our soul bloom.” – Marcel Proust

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Power Hour

Gooood Afternoon!

I hope everyone is enjoying the lovely weather, be it snow on the best  West Coast or sunshine and warmth here in Onterrible!

Today started off with an early morning run before my 8 am class with my early bird running buddy Aless. Due to a few alarm sleep throughs and mid week drinking late nights studying, we haven’t had a morning rendezvous in a few days, so today was extra lovely!

Stats:

Distance: 10.16km   Time: 57:58   Avg: 5:42/km

During our run Aless and I got chatting about goals and how we are going to approach the months ahead. My plan for the month of November has been to keep running to maintain a base, but as you can tell by my easy paced runs as of late, there are no real training efforts being put fourth. I have enjoyed the break and it has allowed me to focus on getting to more classes for experience towards Can Fit as well as the relaxed schedule has let me hop back on the yoga train (which I will be discussing this week!) . However, as November is almost over (how is this possible!) and as much as I have enjoyed rolling out of a bed and running easy in the morning, it is time to start thinking about picking it up and giving some direction to my early morning workouts. Perhaps I may be hearing from a certain Western States lottery entrant soon with a template/advice for a Boston training schedule!

Anyhow, back to today and the title of this post .. POWER HOUR!

In attempt to be productive this week, I allotted myself an hour this morning to prepare some healthy food options for the week ahead. I am the worst for lollygagging in the morning resulting in an overflowing pot of half cooked steel cut oats, or spending an hour slowly preparing and cooking dinner at night when really I should be working on my thesis lit review ( food > ambush marketing!). I am happy to report that the first instillation of POWER HOUR was a success!

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In less than one hour I prepared the following:

Slow Cooker Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili

(from The Fitnessista)

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Homemade Hummus

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Steel Cut Oats (Enough for the whole week)

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And I also had this fabulous salad bowl and yellow fruit salad for lunch..

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Wahoo!

Now, continuing with the theme of POWER HOUR, I best be going to be productive on other non running and eating related fronts.. unexciting I know!

Have an amazing day!

What is your worst procrastination habit and what do you do to overcome it?

“If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of.” – Bruce Lee

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A Week in Review

Happy Saturday Morning!

Am I the only one who feels like this has been one of those weeks that honestly feels like it was two days long!? The only thing that seems to support the fact that seven days did indeed go by this week is the abundance of delicious, nutritious food that has been consumed at 1208. Without further rambles, here are some highlights of the week!

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Leftover homemade Spagehetti SquashDSC04520

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Fruit Salad.. my fav 🙂

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Applesauce and pumpkin mess with nuts, cranberries and puffinsDSC04525

The last of my beloved Libby’s pumpkin.. Pumpkin oats!DSC04526

Salmon Sandwich thin with bright coloured veg and homemade hummusDSC04527                  

I also had a bit of a bake-a-thon on Thursday which resulted in a freshly packed bag of cookies for my boy E who lent me his bike and an awesome healthy treat to share with the ladies in my CAN FIT PRO Certification class. Stay tuned for the recipes 🙂

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In other non edible news, this week was also one which featured some random but very enjoyable workout endeavours..The highlights:

I’m officially back on the yoga train and attended 3 awesome classes at my new studio Yoga By Sarah.. one of which was a Hot Groove Class with my friend Megan. Hot Groove is yoga but done to regular workout music and is the fastest and hardest flow class I have ever gone to.. and its in a hot room!

Thursday, the lovely Koalby and I did the spin/muscle strength combo class at Brock and despite getting my favourite Lulu sweater stolen (tears) and having a very un motivating  “trainer” for the strength portion, the class was great! I am going to attempt to keep doing spin 1-2 times per week as it is an awesome workout. Koalb and I were excitedly chatting the entire class as we have come up with what hopefully is going to be an amazing idea for the new year. All I will say is it involves 5 ambitious SPMA girls!

As far as running goes, this week was rather light however, this was my plan for the month of November. Basically, I am just running enough to maintain my base and when the month of Christmas is officially upon us I am going to turn the switch on for BOSTON!

I also had a great week on the educational front, as I presented my thesis to the SPMA faculty without stuttering and speeding through my words too fast.. Or so I was told!

The forecast for my weekend includes my final day of Can Fit Certification, locking myself in my room on a Saturday night to begin keep at studying for my marketing midterm Monday, and Sunday is going to be a RR morning with a Hatha class, an afternoon of studying with friends at Coffee Culture and then I will be hitting the hardwood (well, attempting to!) for my second night of bball intramurals.

Well, I just fuelled up with an old time favourite..

Overnight Oats! (1/3c. raw oats, 1/2 a naner, 1/3 c. almond mlik, cinnamon in an empty pb container – left in fridge overnight and topped with other 1/2 of naner, more cinnamon, chia and flax)

Looks yucky, tastes amazing!

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And I’m off to learn how to teach resistance training!

What was the best thing you ate this week? Did you have any memorable or new to you workouts?

I am going to leave with this amazing quote that I stole from Gina at the Fitnessista (this girl is awesome, check her out here!)

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Have an awesome weekend!

 

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Powered By Pumpkin

Happy Friday Morning!

Although it is insanely hard to believe the week is already over, I couldn’t be happier that the weekend has arrived! As a result of an amazing class field trip turned dance party and 3 hours of sleep on Wednesday night, yesterday was a bit of a right off in the productivity department. I am not meant to be a mid week drinker, end of story!

I did however go to a fabulous yoga class (its been a while.. downward dog = death to Oprah arms) and made some pretty unreal cookies with my roomie for the arrival of her dad and sister this afternoon. Yes, we feed our guests well!

We used this recipe after deciding you can’t go wrong with Martha, but we added peanut butter chips and skor bits as well.. Oh my! After tasting these bad boys I almost never want to healthify or veganize a recipe again..

This morning was an early one as I met Cass and Aless for an awesome and foggy early bird run. It is so warm outside for this time of the year and I am loving it! We took it really easy and  ran just shy of 10km in 59:39 (6:03 /KM pace, haha so we were basically “sleep running” but it felt great!).

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Pumpkin Oats  … for the third time this week!

I never got in to detail however, a few weeks ago now I embarked on a trip to New Orleans with my thesis advisor for a presentation at marketing conference, Thanks to bad luck and crazy weather in the Midwest US, we never left the Buffalo airport 😦

Although I was disappointed, our whirlwind trip was not all negative as we made a pit stop at Target before heading back into Canada. This trip started a pumpkin frenzy at 1208..

 

 

So freaking good! Unfortunately, the word going around the streets of the blog world is that Libby’s is hard to find, and much like the amazing Chobani Greek yogurt, not available in Canada. Most groceries store do have pumpkin, its just not as good as this stuff… I bought 4 cans and I only have one left.. sad situation.

Pumpkin Oats

Pumpkin is overwhelming popular around the blog world these days and perfect for fall inspired dishes and as a result I have been inundated with recipes for pumpkin related eats for the last month or so! My version of pumpkin oats was inspired by who other than my favourite and admired go recipe source, Angela at Oh She Glows.

1/3 c. rolled oats

1/2 c. almond milk

1/4 c. water

3 “blobs” (around 1/3c.) pumpkin puree

1 banana (cut in half and diced)

1 t. cinnamon

1 t pumpkin pie spice

1/2 T chia seeds

1 T pumpkin seeds

1/2 T ground flax

Honey coated spoon for drizzle

Directions:

Place oats and milk/water in a small sauce pan, bring to boil.

Once boiling, turn down heat and mix in pumpkin, half of the chopped naner, and spices.

Cover and let simmer for about 10 mins, or until all the liquid is absorbed and oats are at your desired consistency.

Spoon oats into a bowl and top with the rest of the bananer, flax, pumpkin/chia seeds ( the toppings which could be used on this are endless!)

Drizzle with little bit of honey and enjoy!

 

Up Next for Today:

Clean room (total gongshow!)

Apartment cleaning spree with the roomie (her fam jam is coming here for the weekend)

Interval class

Meeting with CB for thesis presentation next week

CAN Fit Pro!

Ohh and one more thing before I get crackin! I was thrilled to hear that I may have some new readers from my lovely home town..

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WELCOME!!

I hope you guys keep on checking out my rambles, and please comment up a storm on anything you find ridiculously lame interesting!. Miss you 🙂

Happy Friday and have an awesome weekend!

What is your weekend looking like?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hamilton Half Marathon Recap

Annnnnnd another race in the books! It was definitely a chilly one, but very fun indeed.

The day started off nice and early ( although thanks to the time change, I got an extra hour of sleep.. win!) in preparation for a 6:30 pick up from my BC bud Kyler.

I ate the usual PB and toast (it was a pb naner sandwich thin as I am all out of my Squirrel Bread because my regular ( ie. bus able) grocery store does not carry it.. WF I miss you dearly!).. and began the hydration with lots of H20.. and chia seeds!

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I listened to the wise words of my mother, “always plan your outfit and have everything packed the night before”..its amazing how lessons in grade school transfer over to college!

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Race Outfit and essentials – Are you wondering as to why I included a dead lamb in the picture? That was my amazing throw away jacket.. which I had a hard time parting with to say the least!

Once we hit the road it seemed like no time had passed before we had been bussed from Hamilton’s Confederation park to the start line outside a high school in Stoney Creek and the race was underway. As I was in the company of some turbo runners (by turbo I mean having the ability to run a 1:21:00 half marathon, despite never having run more than 10k in your life!) I started off flying right away. I went with my strategy from Victoria and left my Garmin behind as I just wanted to run on feel and not have a digital reminder of pace to look it.

The first 10k felt great, it was chilly but sunny and as I was prepared for, the course was really flat. I took half a gel at the 11km water station and kept feeling good until around the 16km mark, when my mind started to wonder and as a result I think I started slowing down. It was at this time that Kyler (who I had passed at the 11km mark) came up from behind and proceeded to pass me. Of course, I was happy to see he was having a great run but I admit, the competitive side in me was a little bit rattled! I decided to try to pick up my pace, which already seemed pretty fast and keep Kyler in my grasps. A few more kilometres went by and I started feeling rather stagnant for the lack of a better word. I knew there was less than 5km left, a distance I have been running every weekend for the last month.. however I was lacking the desire, fire and somewhat fresh feeling I had going into the homestretch of the Goodlife Half in Victoria.

And then, almost like an angel from the sky I heard something along the lines of “Hi Alyson, man you`re looking good” come from a man pulling up beside me. Wouldn’t you know it was my Dave numero 2!.. David Manuel from the St Catharines Running Room, who was ran the marathon clinic I dropped out of after leaving Broadway contemplated joining when I got back to school. I have ran with David a few times and he is a great man, an older and less extroverted version of Broadway’s fearless leader who to my knowledge lacks a gibbled hip, logo making skill and ultra running abilities.. so basically he is a lame excuse for the “Real Dave” ( I say this knowing Ontario Dave  is not the most frequent and appreciated comment poster on this blog!)..

NONETHELESS!.. running into him at this point of the race and having him tell me “we are going to ride your footsteps to the finish, you’re doing great”.. ignited that fire I was struggling to keep alive. Soon enough I was not only in line with Kyler but bolding yelling at him (he is an iPod wearing racer).. “ARE YOU SERIOUSLY GOING TO GET BEAT BY A GIRL!?!”. This was apparently enjoyed by the group of ladies who started screaming “you go girl!”.. Less than 15 seconds later after we both started sprinting, I believe the words that came out of my mouth were “okay, lets just be nice now!”.. A slight oversight in my cockiness boldness was that despite hearing the announcers voice we were still about a kilometre, and a ridiculously long one at that, away from the finish line. Although long, the last kilometre was fun and in what was the most entertaining finish I’ve had in a race to date, I crossed the finish line (with chip on shoe, wooot!)  in a time of 1:33:33, identical to Kyler, with him screaming “Letttssssss Goooooo!” loudly in my ear!

Was it a PB … No

Was I a little disappointed a first… Yes

Did this disappointment go away when I was greeted by my three XC Buds who all finished sub 1:30:00 in their first half marathon ever… You bettcha!

Overall, the race was very enjoyable and in hindsight, I am happy with my time despite not improving on my time from Victoria. I finished 2nd in my age group, and 90th overall.

The greatest part of this race, was that I was able to take away a number of learning’s from it, specifically these three things..

1. I need to take a break from racing! Since arriving in St Catharines at the end of August, I have ran 3 half marathons and 5 5km CIS X country races… There has been no meaningful training going on, just a great deal of racing. Don`t get me wrong it has been awesome but I am going to put away the pink and white racing flats until the end of February. Although, there may be a minor exception in the form of a 5km run in a Santa suit, how could I seriously turn that down!

2. When training for Boston I need to continually remind myself of this saying.. “Long, Slow Runs Equal Long Slow Runners”. After seeing the amazing results from my teammates .. in particular the amazing Aless, a 2nd year Brock XC runner, who I may or may not`ve coerced into running the race today ( muhahaha) who ran more than 10k for the first time ever this past Sunday, hammered out a 1:41:00 half marathon! Unreal! Yes, Aless is fit and a naturally fast runner (who did track in high school so she had a good base to work with) but she did not put any effort into training for the half marathon distance, and she was way faster than I would say the majority of people who embark on long slow half marathon training programs.. I am now going by the assumption that if I want to get faster for Boston, I cannot be doing complacent, comfortable long runs (which is what I naturally want to do!) I need to be getting out of my comfort zone and focusing on both distance and speed. Any takers want to touch upon this subject? I would love to hear any thoughts both supporting and/or discrediting my thinking!

3. The third and final thing I learned today is… Dang, I miss the Babe Patrol!!..

But with that being said.. I am pretty darn lucky as I have found another awesome group of runners in St. Kitts and although we don’t have a Sea Wall ( or matching shirts and a logo!), I feel fortunate that I was able to run XC this year and meet such awesome people (who love running!!) and I’m excited for the running adventures we are going to have in the months ahead!

What is that famous saying.. make new running friends but keep the old, one is gold and the other is too!? Something like that 😉

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The Amazing “First Timers”

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BC/SPMA Connection

Up Coming Races (Tentative)

Grimsby Half Marathon – February 27th

Around the Bay 30k Road Race – March 27th

BOSTON! – April 18th

For the next little while, you are going to be hearing Can Fit Pro related rambles as I am starting my journey to becoming a group fitness instructor this weekend!

And as usual, I have school work that should be getting done as we speak, and although I enjoy you boggies a whole lot more than Malcolm Gladwell… I best be going!

Oh one more thing..take a look at these bad boys! I wish I took a before picture, but this is a dramatic improvement to the sad state of my race tired feet earlier today! Hooray for post race pedicures 🙂

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Thoughts on posting pictures of feet on blog  …Too much!? And yes I know I have freakishly long toes…

Good night and have a great Monday!

Whatever you can do, or dream you can, Begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it, Begin it now.
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Oh and how dare I almost forget! Big shout out to my roomie and human pacer Britt, the resident BU XC speedster who being too “cool” to run the Hamilton race with us, ran her local Markham race in an amazing time of 1:30:20 and was the top overall female! B- What!? 🙂

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Why Didn’t I Invent Facebook?

Besides the fact I go to Brock U and not Harvard?

And why have I been MIA for the last however long after hyping up my return as a new and improved student blogger?

Argh, I really have no explanation!

However, tonight after watching the Social Network with my lovely friend Lisa (we had a sushi/movie date and its been determined Ontario sushi has nothing on BC Sushi, on Broadway that is!), I am feeling like its time I hop back on the train, yet again.

I also have something exciting to share running wise as this Sunday I am running the half marathon at The Road To Hope Marathon in Hamilton. This was suppose to be the last and fastest Boston Qualifying course in Canada, however as you may know the Boston Marathon is already sold out! Thank goodness I have a keener for a BP Leader and roomie, otherwise clearly I would’ve been on the wrong side of that equation!

As for the race Sunday, I am approaching it much like I approached the Goodlife Fitness Vancouver Half Marathon back in the beginning of October. Leave the Garmin behind and run as fast as you can for as long as you can and see what happens! I didn’t run out of steam in Victoria and I hope the same holds true for Sunday morning. It has been rather chilly around here and I hope the wind and rain sleep in and the course is nice and dry come the start time at 8:30am. I have been told the course is super flat and very much downhill for the second half, which sounds rather appealing to me.

Here are my goal times (3 of them, as per “The Master’s”advice!)

“Alyson You Rule The World” Goal– Sub 1:30:00

“Content With” Goal –  1:37:00, An “Official” NYC Qualifying Time (double loop and super glue timing chip, or maybe I should hold it in my hand to ensure it does not get lost?) ..Perhaps 2011 NYC Marathon will be a potential location for the North American unveiling of China’s Latest Running Phenom!?

“Oh Alyson, Running 5k’s for the last month hasn’t served you well.. please stop” Goal – Sub 1:40:00

Overall however, I am looking forward to Sunday as I miss running longer races and I am heading down to Hamilton tomorrow evening and spending the night/race day morning with some of my XC Buds, who despite running 33:00 10ks ( on XC courses.. wowzah) have never ran half marathons before. I am looking forward to seeing them dominate!

I’ll be back Sunday with a race report!

Have a great weekend 🙂

PS: Is it too late to aspire to go to Harvard!?

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