Shopping, Home Projects & Hummus Fun

Since I survived my first 5k, I thought I’d reward myself with something to make running even more fun – a new sports bra & socks!

Exciting, right? ๐Ÿ™‚

I got the Sugoi Fizz Bra in Flamingo Pink & Fox River Impel Quarter Socks in Pink both from Backcountry Outlet, so they were both steals. What is your favorite sports bra or socks? How many do you own?

I also signed up (or am going to sign up after I finish writing this) for another 5k next month just to keep myself on track and aim for a better time.

In other news, I regret to inform that all Shredding will be on hold for a minimum of 1 week. I am really bummed, but on the up side we have decided to rip out all of our flooring and install hardwood. Which means…

– Our house is in a construction zone.
– The only t.v. is unhooked and out of commission.
– There is no other place to shred.
– My free time is now spent rolling out red rosin, cutting sub-floor, removing toilets, stoves & fridges (well really only 1 of each) & moving furniture, so thus there is no time to shred.

DIY home projects is another passion of mine, so I am enjoying (almost) every minute of fixing up our little old home.

I’ll be lucky to sneak some running in this week. Hopefully we’ll have the house back in order soon, and I will be shredding on a brand new floor. When Jillian has me do all those jumping jacks, it will be a true test of how it holds up! ๐Ÿ™‚ For all those other 30-day shredders out there, do an extra rep or two for me!

Now time for a little food fun! Look at this great hummus I discovered!

The chipotle is strong, the raspberry subtle. This is a nice change of pace!

Ingredients: fresh cooked garbanzo beans, canola oil, raspberry flavor, tahini, garlic, chipotle pepper, sea salt, lemon or lime juice concentrate, spice, probiotic cultures

Almost all the ingredients are organic. See their website for their entire line of probiotic hummus.

Okay, back to floor duty! Goodnight!

Running My First 5k, A Reflection

The night before the run, I had a (not-so) bright idea of going to Starbucks and getting coffee. When I tried to go to bed at around 10:00, the caffeine was not letting me. I was completely wound-up, wide-awake and despite my best efforts did not fall asleep until around 1:00am. Then I woke up at 3:00am, 4:00am and finally when my alarm went off at 6:00am.

To add to that, my tummy was very upset in the morning. That coupled with poor sleep had me in a funk and not feeling as confident as I should on my first race day.

Once I got to there and picked up my packet (which included a cool t-shirt! hooray!), I was much happier. I do have to note, that this particular run was labeled as a “competitive race”, not a “fun run”. In my mind, the only person I was racing against was myself though. I had a personal goal in mind, and was going to try not to feel intimated by all the hard-core runners there. Although I’ve done bicycling rides/races before, this was my first organized running event. There are a lot of similarities in the two, which made it a wee bit more comfortable. I was surprised at all the people running BEFORE the race! Yes, they were practically sprinting down the course, as if they were being timed. For a second, I thought maybe the race had begun! I opted to NOT join them in their pre-race “warm-up” runs, and just sat & hung out with the hubby who was there to support me and take pictures. ๐Ÿ™‚

Waiting Around, 5 Minutes Before Start

Waiting Around, 5 Minutes Before Start

I wore my bicycling sunglasses, since it was already in the mid-seventies and hot & sunny (and HUMID!) at 8:00 in the morning. Are bicycling and running glasses the same? I guess it doesn’t matter as long as they stay on your face and don’t slip. These are great and never slide on me.

I started towards the back, letting the serious runners stay in front. I didn’t even hear them fire the gun, blow the whistle, or say go… next thing I knew everyone around me was running forward and I thought “Oh wow, I guess we are running now!”. I wore my HRM to sort-of keep track of time, and looked down and it was only 1:30 into the race and I had all these thoughts yelling inside my head: “What am I doing? Am I really running with all these people? Will I make it? Maybe I’ll just go over to that tree and nap. I think I should have went to the bathroom before. I have to pee. Oh shit, I have to pee and now I am only 1:45 into the race. I’m thirsty. No, if I drink more water I will really pee. Oh that little dog in that yard is so cute. Wonder what his name is?”

Finally the crowds dispersed and I was in a much smaller group of runners, and the loud thoughts in my head went away.

A guy passed me who smelled like raw onions. Really? Only 1/2 mile into the race and he already stinks that bad? Whew. Lucky for me he was faster than myself, so he took his onion-smell to the front of the pack.

Then this other guy was running to my right at my same pace, and he had keys and change in his pocket. Jingle, jingle, jingle. It was so annoying, so I ran faster. Then he ran faster. Then I ran slower, he ran slower. I really hoped he would not be next to me for long.

At the 1 mile mark, I was at 10:10. We were now “in the woods”, and it was so humid and the canopy of trees had shut out any sunlight, and kept the moisture inside. The ground was still wet from all the rain from previous days, and there were some slippery slimey leaves on the ground which made me aware of what was underfoot.

A little later, I was behind a woman who was hyperventilating so loud. Her breathing scared me. I know everyone breathes loud, but she was wheezing. Asthma I wondered? A little while later I passed her, and hoped she make it.

Mile Marker 2 came up, and they shouted out “21 even!”. This is when I took advantage of the water they were handing out. It is so hard to drink and run at the same time, I couldn’t do it, so I stopped off to the side for maybe 15 seconds to drink a few sips, then back on track. Mile 3 seemed the longest, I kept thinking I’d see the Mile Marker people at the next corner, but nobody was there.

When I finally did cross Mile 3, I did not hear the time. I was just relieved that there were only .2 left! Should I sprint now? Hmm… I kept at the same pace and ended up behind 3 other women, and we all ran in a pack. As soon as I saw the finish line, I got a burst of energy and sprinted to get the edge. After all, this WAS a race, so why not?

I saw my husband there at the finish line, which made me so happy to see a familiar face

Crossing The Finish!

Crossing The Finish!

Time of first 5k: 33:20.7 – Finished 119

The first thing my husband said was “You did it sweetie. I am glad you didn’t puke.” I thought maybe he said that because my tummy was not well that morning, but I guess 5 minutes before I crossed, 3 people crossed the finish line and threw up all within 10 seconds of one another. Is this common?

Did not stick around for awards or results (had to go home and shower to meet up with the in-laws for SUSHI! Priorities, people!). Grabbed half a banana, water and a few power bars for later and went home. It felt good to have finished, and I did better than I thought! Certainly I am not going to win any awards with that time, but I made it and now can’t wait to do another one! These things are addicting!

Sugar Snaps Wear Hats & More Kashi Pizza

The title just about sums it up.

Got some gorgeous sugar snap peas at the farm, and they look adorable in their little “hats”.

Farm Fresh Sugar Snap Pea

Farm Fresh Sugar Snap Pea

Since I had all those Kashi coupons, I am sampling (and reviewing) practically every flavor of pizza they make! This one was Mexicali Black Bean, a thin crust pizza. Choosing between this and the Sicilian, I’d have to say that the Sicilian was much better! However the hubby seemed to favor this one… he said the veggies had a nice fire-roasted flavor. Overall it was better than most frozen pizzas on the market, and I’ll probably get this one again especially since he likes it. The “sauce” is like refried black beans, which gives it a different taste… not your typical tomato-sauce flavor. If you like refried black beans, you’ll probably like this pizza. Oh yea, and unlike the other one we tried, this one does have cheese.

Kashi Mexicali Black Bean Pizza, Sugar Snap Peas & Garbage Salad

Kashi Mexicali Black Bean Pizza, Sugar Snap Peas & Garbage Salad

The peas… I rinsed and dried them. Pulled off their hats (but had trouble with the strings), and then tossed with a little bit of evoo & s&p. Threw them on a cookie sheet and cooked them for the same time & temp as the pizza. They were perfect! And not stringy at all. I think because they were so tender and fresh, picked just this morning! Salad was romaine, mozzarella chunks, avocado, carrot shreds & Poppyseed dressing. Just stuff that was leftover in the fridge! Garbage salad delight!

Just a short post tonight… tomorrow will be the 5k details! ๐Ÿ™‚

Just Signed Up For My First 5k!

Black Bean Fajita Meatball Pitas w/Spinach Salad

Black Bean Fajita Meatball Pitas w/Spinach Salad

Ground beef mixed with mashed black beans & spices and then oven baked. Nestled in a whole wheat pita with yogurt cilantro sauce, onions, green bell peppers & avocado. The meatballs are hiding underneath the veggies & yogurt, but there are 3 in there! Recipe from Clean Eating Magazine.

Strawberry-Rhubarb Coffee Cake w/Fresh Strawberries

Strawberry-Rhubarb Coffee Cake w/Fresh Strawberries

Dessert was a slice of Strawberry-Rhubarb Cake from Starbucks (split in half to share) and some wonderful fresh strawberries from the local farm. Look at how red they are! They were tart and sweet all at once. Speaking of Starbucks, have you tried the Iced Passion Tea? I get mine unsweetened (but it still looks like they “pump” something in there… anyone know the ingredients in this???). Hopefully its not too bad ingredient-wise because I do love these! So refreshing for summer, especially since I’m cutting back on coffee (some).

Went back to The Shred today, after skipping a day. So far I’m at L1D5. I’m not sure if it is because I skipped a day, but it seemed harder! But it also seemed to go faster. I am now doing it with music-only (no verbal instructions) since I am bored of hearing the same “conversation” with Jillian every single day. Tonight I also had an awesome run, so awesome that I went home and signed up for my first 5k! The kicker? It is in 2 days! A somewhat spontaneous decision, and I’m a little nervous since I’m a slow runner (more of a slogger). So I’m taking the next day off from running to rest up and be ready. The thing I am dreading most is getting up so early on a weekend!!! The weather forecast looks nice so far – 70 and sunny. Hopefully I won’t come in last place! ๐Ÿ™‚

A Sleepy Day

Today was the first day in quite some time where I did no physical activity (which means I skipped The Shred, sorry guys)… didn’t even take the dog on a walk! For some reason, I was sooo tired and after work ate dinner and then went to bed (after doing some crosswords, yes I am a dork).

But that’s okay, sometimes we just need to listen to our bodies and rest and relax and do nothing.

I did try a new Kashi product – Sicilian Veggie Pizza which is a cheese-less pizza, made with a tomato-bean sauce. It was pretty good! Not as good as my old stand-by (Amy’s No Cheese Veggie), but nice for a change. I picked up some trees (broccoli) at the farm on my way home from work, tossed with evoo, s&p and threw them in the oven while the pizza cooked. I cut them up small so it wouldn’t take long to get nice and roasted.

Kashi Pizza, Roasted Trees & Greek Giant Beans

Kashi Pizza, Roasted Trees & Greek Giant Beans

Then I microwaved some Greek Giant Beans that I picked up on my last World Market food trip. These beans are so meaty and are in this awesome tomato sauce (you can see their size in comparison to my pizza and broccoli!). They are a little greasy/oily from the sauce, but something about them is so addicting and comforting.

Greek Giant Beans From World Market

Greek Giant Beans From World Market

After dinner I just crashed, it was a LONG day at work that was mentally exhausting. Hopefully tomorrow will be better! Oh, my Grandpa is out of the hospital and recovering fine, minus a few toes.

Hope everything is well in your corners of the world!

30 Days/30 Days & Perfect Foods Bar Review

Review: Perfect Foods Bar Lite – Cranberry Crunch ( )

Perfect Foods Bar Lite

Perfect Foods Bar Lite

Wow, what an interesting bar! Despite the name, this neither had a strong cranberry flavor or crunch, but it was still good! The main flavors are puffed rice & peanut butter with a slight touch of honey. However, this bar packs a plethora of other good-for-you ingredients including, but not limited to: rose-hip, orange, lemon, grapefruit, tomato, apple, bell pepper, papaya, mango, black cherry, cranberry, alfalfa, celery, spinach, parsley, mint, kelp, dulse… all organic! I couldn’t taste any of those things, but it made me happy to know that all those goodies were in there!


  • Gluten Free
  • Soy Free (great for those doing the Cleaner Life Month challenge)
  • 172 Calories
  • 3g Fiber
  • 9g Protein
  • 8g Healthy Fat
Closeup of Texture

Closeup of Texture

Some downfalls is that this bar is a bit crumbly, which makes eating on the move fairly difficult. It also needs to stay refrigerated, which would make it hard to take along on hikes (although I doubt it would spoil right away). Also, it did not satisfy my hunger like other bars. An hour later and I was hungry again! Most other bars will keep me full for around 2 1/2 hours or so.

Overall it was interesting, and if you are looking for a change of pace and like peanut butter, you might find this bar worthwhile. With so many other bars on the market, this one probably won’t make the regular rotation in our house though.

30 Days Part 1:

Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred

Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred

Now let’s talk shred! I started The 30-Day Shred and completed 3 consecutive days so far. I will be the first to admit that I suck at ab work. Even though core strength is essential, I usually avoid any ab work, making that portion of the workout difficult (for me). Others might have no problem with it. The other moves were fairly easy… yes I did sweat and did feel my muscles, but it was not as scary as I thought it was going to be. The next day I was pretty sore, but doing it again actually made me feel better. I’m a little unsure about how good it is to do the exact same workout, working the exact same muscles 10 days in a row. (The plan is to do 3 levels – each 10 days straight.) Maybe my thoughts are old school, but I’d normally alternate muscle groups and give a day of rest. What are your thoughts?

In addition to doing L1D3, went on a 1 hour 10 minute hike (yipee!) in the canyons (lots of stairs surprisingly), and a 30 minute run later in the day. It was just so nice out!

I’ll do my best to do this all 30 days straight, and post my results. The DVD says you’ll lose “up to 20 pounds in 30 days”, which if I lost 20, I’d be underweight, so I think this is aimed more towards heavier people. The results I want are to simply tone up, feel stronger & if I lose a few pounds or inches, that’s a bonus.

30 Days Part 2:

Almond Milk Awaiting Amazing Grass

Almond Milk Awaiting Amazing Grass

AMAZING GRASS! I am joining others in the 30-Day Grass Challenge! Okay, I tried a few other flavors, but my taste buds are just not liking the pure green wheat grass flavors. (Maybe in time.) But the chocolate ones are good! I got a 30-day supply of Green SuperFood . At $25, it is pricey, but then again I’ve been cutting down my morning coffee trips, and I hardly ever go out for lunch, so 83ยข a day is not that bad and I plan to try it for only one month (for now).

Since I am doing both The Shred & AG together, I’m not sure if I’ll be able to tell if any increased energy level is coming from the greens OR the extra burst of physical activity.

So those are my current two personal challenges. What challenges are you pursuing right now?

Leaving you with this random food photo from today’s eats. It is a Balsamic Strawberry & Mozzarella Salad.ย  ๐Ÿ™‚

Balsamic Strawberry & Mozzarella Salad

Balsamic Strawberry & Mozzarella Salad

Mix balsamic w/evoo and s&p and mix with romaine, berries, mozzarella chunks & shredded basil! Such a happy spring salad. ๐Ÿ™‚

Rounds Are Better Than Wedges

Maybe I am the last person to learn this, but cutting sweet potato rounds are MUCH easier than cutting wedges! Seems like everyone already knows this, but I’m posting just in case there are any wedge cutters like me lurking… try it round next time!

Sweet Tater Rounds tossed with Red Pepper & Cheese Spread

Sweet Tater Rounds tossed with Red Pepper & Cheese Spread

There is this really great spread at World Market called “Red Pepper & Cheese Spread – Flavors of Greece”. The jar says it is great on bread, pita and crackers. I love in on sandwiches and tossed with hot sweet taters! Just a few spoonfuls and stir it up and it adds a nice flavor.

Ingredients are pretty decent: red peppers, water, feta cheese, myzithra cheese, sauteed onions, evoo, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, glucose, cornstarch, sea salt, paprika, herbs & spices.

Sure they could do without the glucose, and use arrowroot flour instead of the cornstarch, but I was happy to see no MSGs or added colors or weird things. We also had it smeared on a turkey & mozzarella multi-grain pressed sammy. Yummy.

Have you ever tried this beer?



It is Quilmes from Argentina, and i tried it when we went out for tapas. It would taste much better drinking it IN Argentina. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Okay, it is WAY too nice outside to be sitting inside blogging, so see you tomorrow!

Amazing Grass Review & Kashi Coupons To Share

Got some AG samples in the mail, and was so excited to try them! Since I’m a kid-at-heart, thought I’d give the Amazing Grass Kidz SuperFood a try.

Amazing Grass Kids Sample

Amazing Grass Kids Sample

Next to some youthful art. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Trying AG!

Trying AG!

(I am not a cyclops, I really do have two eyes!)

This is a chocolate flavored powder that they call “A Rainbow of Nutrition”. The amount of fluid is very small… about 6 ounces. I mixed mine in the Blender Bottle (even though I wish AG would send me one of their cool bottles with their logo on it…) w/some unsweetened almond milk. It tastes like a healthy chocolate milk. With chocolate, you can’t go wrong! It had a few sips with particles (despite mixing well), that tasted like tiny bits of oatmeal or grain. I really like this! It did not taste too wheat-grassy. Will have to read up on how it differs from the regular Chocolate SuperFood (nutrition-wise).

Have a few more samples to try yet! Seems everyone is jumping on the AG bandwagon lately.

Kashi Coupons

I also got a boat-load of Kashi coupons in the mail! Although I already used most of these on my last shopping trip (it’s how I got a free box of Vive!), there are a few that I probably won’t be using and would love to pass them onto anyone who is interested and would use them.

Six (6) $2.00 Off On Any One Kashi Frozen Entree or Bake Product (expires: 9/1/09)
Five (5) $1.50 Off On Any One Kashi Frozen Bread Pocket Product (expires: 9/1/09)
One (1) $3.00 Off On Any One Kashi Frozen Pizza Product (expires: 9/1/09)

Total of $22.50 Savings!

Not too shabby. Just email me your addy and I’ll drop them in the post. I don’t want to split these up, so whomever is the first person to email me will get all of them.

Have a great Friday!

Melamine “Dinnerware” for Work & Barney Butter Review!

Melamine Plates From Target

Melamine Plates From Target

Since I go into the office 4 days a week, and especially since I’m one of those 5-meals-a-day people, that means I eat 16 “meals” at my desk a week! (The word meals is used lightly, because a lot of them are more or less snacks.)

My desk drawer is stocked with paper plates, napkins & utensils but I hate using a paper plate just to make up some cheese & crackers. Seems so wasteful doesn’t it? Especially when for around a buck or two you can pick up a sweet melamine plate! Target has a decent selection of these all from $1-$5 each. They are lightweight and perfect for keeping at the office. Only downfall is that they are not microwaveable. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

All this talk about eating at the desk reminds me of this WebMD article.

“The desk, in terms of bacteria, is 400 times more dirty than your toilet,” says Charles Gerba, PhD, a professor of environmental microbiology at the University of Arizona in Tucson. “People turn their desks into bacteria cafeterias because they eat at them, but they never clean them. The phone is the dirtiest, the desktop is next, and the mouse and the computer follow.”

Which I think is fine, as long as you understand that and CLEAN it often. I keep a container of disinfecting wipes to clean everything down.

Getting OUT for lunch is much better, and for lunch I usually go outside or the cafeteria at the least and read a book and try to relax and enjoy my food. However, for the other meals/snacks… I can’t exactly take my 9:30am cheese & crackers break and go sit outside and eat while my co-workers are all working hard.

Who else eats at their desk and can relate?

Onto the food! Today’s eats:

Microwaved Egg Whites, Kashi Vive w/Chia Seeds & Almond Milk

Microwaved Egg Whites, Kashi Vive w/Chia Seeds & Almond Milk

Almond Crunch, Just Papaya & Prune

Almond Crunch, Just Persimmon & Prune

Black Bean Burger w/Hummus & Spinach in WW Pita & Banana w/Almond Butter

Black Bean Burger w/Greek Hummus & Spinach in Whole Wheat Pita, Banana w/Almond Butter.

(Not shown: Afternoon Snack – Green Smoothie, Dinner – Grilled Chicken Wings & Back to Nature Macaroni)

These black bean burgers rock. They are made loosely from Eating Bird Food’s recipe found here. I make up batches and freeze them individually wrapped. Just thaw in the fridge a few hours (or toss in your lunch cooler) and microwave. They are delicious in wraps, pitas or on a bun either with traditional burger toppings, or with guacamole, hummus or grilled onions!

The kind folks at Barney Butter were nice enough to send me a few samples!

I tried one packet squeezed over my banana for lunch.The color was different from the almond butters I’m use to (more orangey), and it was a smoother consistency…creamier. The taste was AMAZING. It was the stick-to-your-mouth kind of goodness that I was craving.

Here are the ingredients: Almonds, Evaporated Cane Juice, Palm Fruit Oil, Sea Salt.

I can see this being the kind of almond butter that kids would love. You can see the almond butter sample in the pic above. And Barney Butter is so cool… they have “Team Barney Butter” events like triathlons! Check out their site:

Have you tried this almond butter? What are your thoughts? What is your favorite nut butter?

Too Much Omega-3?

Can you have too much Omega-3? Hmmm… if so then I OD’d on it today. Feeling great though, so it can’t be too bad!

Green Monster Day 2

Green Monster Day 2

Hello! Another Green Monster smoothie morning along with some joe (I promise that tomorrow will be something different!).

Do you take any Omega-3 supplements? I came across these Coromega Squeeze Packs at the Vitamin Shoppe. Just bought one of the Go Paks to try (they are 99ยข for one! yikes!), but at least it comes with a $1 off coupon inside, so if I buy the bigger box (the 30 count package is around $20), it could be used towards that. From their website: “…clinically proven 300% better absorption than regular soft gels.” I’m intrigued. Orange flavored goo in a pack, that is better than pills? Sure I’ll try it!

Coromega Go-Pack

Coromega Go-Pack

Not going to lie here… this was not the best tasting thing. Not horrible, but definitely not as yummy orange as I was anticipating. Luckily it is only about a teaspoon size serving… you wouldn’t want anymore than that at one time. They have several other flavors, that I might be willing to give a try. Omega-3 is good for the body, and I’m always looking for alternative ways to get it. Their package design is super cute (not this one, but the packaging they have on the site) and I LOVE the illustrations. Not sure who the artist is, but kudos to them!

Zac Omega Peanut Butter & Strawberry Jam

Zac Omega Peanut Butter & Strawberry Jam

Speaking of illustrations- check out this bar! How cute is that? When I grabbed this bar for my cooler this morning, I did not realize it was an Omega-3 bar and I just had my Coromega shot. So I surely got enough Omegas today! This bar is made by Fairlight Bakery out of Vancouver Washington (love Vancouver!) and made with Oregon berries! I am thinking HOOD RIVER STRAWBERRIES?! It doesn’t say, but the Hood River Valley has some amazing berries. This bar was more like a dense cookie… very different from the nut-date-fruit bars I’ve been eating lately. I don’t watch calories, but if you do, you might want to know it is 250 which is kind of high for a bar. I really liked this!!! The peanut butter & jelly is really subtle which I liked. It was not overly sweet or sugary, just pleasant. I am not sure if this is a brand new product, but saw it for the first time this week. It retails for $1.99 in my neck of the woods. Try it if you are looking for a bar that tastes like a cookie. ๐Ÿ™‚

Quinoa Pasta

Quinoa Pasta

Dinner was a Southwest Spaghetti Bake, made with Quinoa Linguine (so I guess it is a Southwest LINGUINE Bake). ๐Ÿ™‚

Southwestern Spaghetti Bake

Southwestern Spaghetti Bake

Cooked up some lean ground beef (you could sub ground turkey or veggie crumbles), green bell, mushrooms, onions & garlic. Then added a combo of spices- cumin, chili powder, oregano, s&p and tomato sauce. Tossed the noodles with 1 egg & some milk, and poured the meat/veggie/sauce mixture on top. Sprinkled a touch of cheese and baked for 10 minutes. Served with a spinach salad w/TJ’s Poppyseed dressing & a multigrain roll. Quick & easy. I don’t cook with ground beef often, but was craving it this week over the usual turkey.

The temps have been so cool here today, and with all the rain everything is so green. Debating if I want to do an Exercise TV workout tonight, or just jump right in the bath. Hmmm…