Cap City Half Marathon and Quarter Marathon

So remember that one time that I ran a half marathon and I hated training but I loved race day? And I said I’d never do another and then I said maybe I would do another? Well I decided probably I will never do another. For real. But over the weekend I DID complete a Quarter Marathon, which is about 6.6 miles. And for the record, it is MORE than a 10K…it’s like a 10.5K. Or something. Whatever, it was long and plenty of running for me. If I could occasionally challenge myself to a 10K OR quarter marathon, I will feel like a real athlete. Kind of.

Okay so anyway, the race. It was the Cap City Half Marathon / Quarter Marathon / 5K. It was a PERFECT day. Cool at the start but sunny and warm by the end. The race was well organized and a fun route. The announcer at the start line was full of energy, reminding us of “The Golden Beverage of Beer that awaits you at the finish!” Here is a quick photo recap of our race experience:

Overall, I completed the race in 1 hour 12 minutes. And I didn’t walk! I mean, some of that last half mile was a pace so slow it was basically walking, but many millions of thanks to Kelsey who stuck by the whole way and kept me running. I have been training, but running is just SO BORING when you’re alone. So on my longer Saturday runs through my neighborhood, I would often stop to walk because a) running is hard, and again b) running is boring. So I was pleasantly surprised by what my body was capable of. I did not feel fabulous at the finish, but hey, I pushed myself! Go me!

Anyway, if you need a fun race to do in Central Ohio, definitely check this one out next year. Maybe I will see you there!

Mushroom and Spinach Quiche

AKA Super Easy Quiche that you can fill with any ingredients you want! YAY!

This weekend, a couple of my girlfriends gathered for a bunch at a friend’s house. Let’s just say we were there for about five hours, and it was glorious, girly time. And my hands-down favorite brunchy food is quiche (well really, anything with eggs, but quiche definitely covers that). There are a million recipes out there, so I kind of just made one up, and I’d say it turned out quite nice.

First off, I pretty much ALWAYS use a store-bought crust. They are delicious, and let’s be real…no one cares. I recommend a frozen deep-dish pie crust…you know, the kind you buy that’s already in the foil tin, and usually you have to buy two which means WOOPS more quiche next weekend please!!

Anyway, here you go. You can always substitute any meat or veggie you want, but I was really happy with the flavor on this one…enjoy!

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Mushroom and Spinach Quiche

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk (I use skim, but I suppose higher fat might be even more delicious)
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 1 10 oz package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed
  • 1 8oz package of sliced baby bella mushrooms
  • CHEESE. Optional, and the amount/type is totally adjustable.
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder, and any other seasonings you are partial to. Thyme would be good, but I did not have any on hand.
  • Olive oil

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Saute onion in olive oil until it begins to brown and become slightly translucent. Add mushrooms, and cook for a few more minutes until they begin to brown as well. Add in spinach and mix well. Take off heat and let it cool off a bit.

2. In a medium bowl, combine eggs, milk, and seasonings: Beat well. Also add in about 2-4 oz of cheese. I had a bit of feta left in my fridge, so I threw that in with a little shredded cheddar.

3. Stir about 1/2 of your onion, mushroom, and spinach mixture into your eggs. Pour this into your pie crust, and then slowly add as much of the remaining vegetable mixture as you can. You may have a little left over, but I think it’s more important to get all the eggs in there.

4. Bake for about 40 minutes before checking it. It will likely still jiggle a little in the middle. Add a sprinkle of cheese across the top, and bake another 10 minutes, or until the middle no longer jiggles. I also recommend placing your quiche onto a sheet tray, since you’ll likely get a little overflow, and you don’t want to bother cleaning your oven later!

5. Let rest at least 20 minutes. You can serve at room temperature, or even cold. I’m a fan of warm/room temperature…To each his own!

Enjoy BRUNCH!! Because mimosas.

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Changing Perspective {slow but sure}

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If you’ve spent any time milling around my blog, you know that I am constantly trying to discover new ways to improve my health and wellness through nutrition, fitness, faith, and general positive thinking. And slowly but surely, I’m noticing a change in my inner voice. It’s less harsh. It’s more encouraging. It’s more thoughtful. In OTHER words, I have been way kinder to myself lately. The idea that my body and mind and life is unique, and that God created my body and mind and life to serve Him and to love others is soaking deeper and deeper into my bones. I updated my kitchen chalkboard (above) to remind myself when I’m wandering around my kitchen aimlessly. Feed my body because I care about it. Workout for my body because God gave me only one to use while I’m here on earth. While I have a LONG WAY TO GO before everything I do is truly for the GLORY OF GOD, I am beginning to reap what I’ve sowed through years of studying The Word, being in a faith community, and surrounding myself with loving and Christ-loving people.

So whatever it is you are struggling with today – whether it’s health and body image, or something totally different – ask yourself if you’re doing it for the Glory of God. And then go dive into some good ol’ community!!

Coconut Ginger Balls

Once in a while, I get a hankering for something strange. Lately, it’s been coconut and ginger. Plus, I’m always wanting something sweet around the house that is still pretty “clean.” Trust me, I can do a number on some cookies or cake, but I always feel 100000x guilty afterward. So to me, this recipe is the perfect little something-sweet-and-guilt-free.

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Adapted from Every Last Bite, this recipe seriously took me like, five minutes to whip up. I made them into tiny little balls so I feel like I have more of them… I think these would be delicious spread on an apple, graham crackers, or just popped in your mouth after dinner. Or for breakfast. Or whenever. Enjoy!

Coconut Ginger Balls (makes about 1 dozen)

Ingredients

8 medjool dates, pitted
3/4 cup unsweetened coconut, shredded
2 tablespoons walnut pieces
2 tablespoons fresh ginger
1/2 tablespoon honey (optional – the dates are pretty sweet already!)

Directions

1. Put dates in food processor and pulse for about a minute, until a paste is formed.

2. Add in the rest of your ingredients and blend until combined. A soft, sticky dough will form. You may need to scrape the sides a time or two.

3. Form into tablespoon-ish sized balls. You may want to wet your hands just a little so it doesn’t stick. Keep in the refrigerator for a week, or in the freezer for up to a month.

 

April Ab Challenge

Oh gosh you guys! I wrote this yesterday and never hit publish…woops! Well here is a one-day-late April challenge for you…

I keep a “workouts” folder in my Dropbox where, over the years, I’ve thrown random workout plans, challenges, and PDFs. Occasionally, I look through it. And the other day I rediscovered this little 30-day challenge, and I was all like, hey April is 30 days! And THEN I was all like, hey maybe my blog readers want to do this with me?

So here we are. I’m not promising I will actually accomplish all these but hey, I’m gonna try! I’m also trying to guilt my hubby into doing it with me by taping it to the wall. I plan to put an “M” next to each one I do so he can see my awesomeness and want to be like me. Right, honey? 😉

Anyway, here you go! Do this with me in April, and I’ll give you a big high five in 30 days!

30 Days of Abs

My Favorite Every Day Smoothie

I’ve posted about a few of my favorite protein shakes, but I really do have one go-to that’s my favorite. My base is ALWAYS frozen banana (either a half or whole one), almond milk, and protein powder. Beyond that, the options are endless. But here is my FAVORITE daily one…

And it happens to be green-ish! Just one day after St. Patrick’s. SORRY FOR THE BAD PHOTO. I was trying to get out the door!

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Ingredients:

1/2 banana

1/4 cup blueberries

1 cup spinach

2 slices of pineapple

1 serving protein powder

1 cup plain, unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)

Directions:

1. Prep first four items in advance by slicing, bagging, and freezing. I make several baggies at once.

2. Combine frozen ingredients with your favorite vanilla or chocolate protein powder plus almond milk.

Graze

My friend Katy has been testing out Plated and Stitch Fix and all these cool little companies. So when I got an invite to get my first box free with Graze, I was intrigued. First of all, each box is only like, $6 anyway, so I can see myself actually paying for this now and then. Second of all, you can choose how often you want boxes and even mark preferences for what you want in them. Last… #snacks. Who doesn’t love ALL OF THE DELICIOUS SNACKS?!

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I confess, I dove into my snacks before even bothering to take a photo…OOPS! But you get the picture. Healthy little treats delivered to your door. Happy Tuesday to me, indeed!

Want to try your first box free? Here’s my referral code – JNHRRN9HP. Don’t forget, you can cancel anytime. You can get yourself one free box and then quit. Or you can just skip boxes until you feel like getting one. All in all, it makes my heart and tummy very very happy!!

If you order it, let me know what you think…I’ve already loved the 1/2 box that I’ve eaten!

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DO IT! You know your taste buds want to…