Current Obsessions – February

Time for a monthly update on my current obsessions. While I’m actually still really into several of my January obsessions, I did realize there are a few more things I’ve been loving recently.

Emerald Green. I’m loving this color right now. I bought this green sweater a couple weeks ago and love it. I want to find a couple more green pieces for spring/summer. I even have my eye on a new tote bag that is emerald green.

feb obs 2

 

Gold jewelry. I used to be a strictly silver jewelry girl, but I bought some gold jewelry on my recent shopping trip and have been wearing it a lot! I didn’t realize how many outfits I have that look great with a pop of gold. (Goes great with my green sweater too. ;))

feb obs 3

Biscoff cookie spread. I actually discovered this stuff several months ago, but I just bought a new jar so my obsession has been renewed. If you’ve ever been on a Delta flight and gotten the cookies (yummy cinnamon cookies) then you have an idea of what this cookie spread tastes like. It’s the same consistency as peanut butter, but is made from those delicious cookies. So good on some pretzels, apples, or just licking it off your finger.

feb obs 4

Chocolate. I’ve always loved chocolate, but for some reason I just can’t get enough of it recently. Especially M&M’s. Luckily they were on sale around Valentine’s Day. Maybe the abundance of chocolate because of that holiday is the reason I can’t get enough. 🙂

feb obs 1

 

What are you obsessed with right now?

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10 Mile Training – Week 2

Week 2 of training for my 10 mile race in April is in the books. Successful, but I didn’t stick to the training plan as much this week. Partially because of my schedule and partially because of a pesky pain on the inside of my foot/ankle. But, here’s the rundown:

Monday – 3 miles and strength

This was right on track with the training plan. I knocked out the 3 miles in 30 minutes and then got in my strength training.

Tuesday – Rest day

I had a late meeting at work, so this was a natural rest day for me.

Wednesday – 4 miles

This run started good, but pretty soon I started noticing a slight pain on the inside of my ankle (near the top of my shoe). One of those pains that kind of came and went during the run. Nothing that made me feel like I had to stop, but not one I’ve had before.

Thursday – 30 minute swim

Because of my late work day on Tuesday, I got to go into the office a bit later than usual. This worked out great because I had something going on after work on Thursday, so I was able to workout in the morning. I put on my running shoes and noticed that just walking around that little pain was still there. It was like my running shoe was pushing on a bruise on my left foot because it didn’t hurt when I wore other shoes. So, I decided to skip the run and swim instead. It was a relaxing workout for a Thursday morning, and a good excuse to wear flip flops. 🙂

flip flop 2.13

Friday – 30 minute bike and strength

On Friday, I decided to continue to go easy on my foot to be safe. I hit the bike for a bit and then did my strength training, so I’m still on track for 2 strength days per week.

I hope you had a good Valentine’s Day! The saying in this Dove Chocolate was pretty fitting for the day.

V-day

On Friday night I finally got to see Catching Fire! It was really good and I’m excited for the 3rd movie to come out.

Saturday – 25 minute elliptical

Pesky pain was still hanging around a little, so I went with something low impact because I really wanted to try and get in my long run on Sunday – as long as I wasn’t feeling that pain.

Sunday – 7 miles

Again, when I tied my shoes I noticed that little pain – still feeling like the top of my shoe was hitting a bruise or tender spot. But, I had a stroke of genius and tried tying my shoe differently to see if that would help at all. Low and behold, it did! I normally lace up my sneakers all the way to the top hole, but I took it down one hole and that made it so the top of my shoe wasn’t pressing on the inside part of my ankle. I got through 7 miles on the treadmill (10:20 avg pace) and didn’t have pain in my ankle. Of course I noticed that my big toe felt a little sore after my run when I was stretching my calf – if it’s not one thing it’s another.

Pre-run fuel - Strawberries and banana with strawberry and banana yogurt.
Pre-run fuel – Strawberries and banana with strawberry and banana yogurt.

Today is a total rest day. I felt like my body needed the extra rest day this week, and hopefully all of these little aches and pains will go away. 

How do you deal with annoying aches and pains? Have you seen Catching Fire?

Cooking Fail – Still Learning

I’m keeping up with my 2014 goal of making at least one new recipe each month. Last Sunday, I busted out this Weight Watchers cookbook and looked up a recipe I had seen while flipping through it a couple months ago.

WW cookbook

It was for Spicy Poblano and Corn Soup. Still dealing with cold weather, so soup sounded good and I like any recipe that uses a small number of ingredients and is quick!

Now, the book says the prep time is 3 minutes and cook time is 10 minutes. Maybe for a more experienced cook, but not for me. It took me a bit longer to chop up the onion and peppers. The book actually suggests starting to boil the milk and some corn while you chop. I did that, but then realized it was boiling and I was nowhere near ready to add the other ingredients. I actually ditched that batch of corn and milk and started over (it was just a cup of milk and a cup of corn, so not a lot wasted). But, still kind of a #cookingfail. I regrouped and finished all of the prep before I started boiling the milk again, so from that point on things went smoothly.

The soup tuned out well. You also puree some milk and corn which made it a little thicker than other soups.

feb soup

Timing is often the thing I struggle with while cooking–at least until I’ve made something a couple times. I watch shows on Food Network and I’m always amazed at how they’re able to multi-task and have three things going at once!

Even with the hiccup, I finished the recipe and learned something in the process. That’s the whole reason I wanted to challenge myself to try new recipes this year. Practice make perfect and I know I’ll get better the more I cook!

Have you ever had a #cookingfail?

10 Mile Training – Week 1

Training for Goldy’s 10 mile officially started on Monday, so week 1 is in the books! I ran this race last year and really liked it, so I’m looking forward to doing it again and hope to get a 10 mile PR too!

Goldy's 10 mile finish line
Goldy’s 10 mile finish line

Here’s the rundown of my training for week 1:

Monday – 3 miles and strength

A good first training run. I did the 3 miles at 10:10 pace on the treadmill. I’m really going to make a better effort of getting in strength training twice a week while training. My muscles were definitely sore  since I’ve been slacking on the strength training.

Tuesday – 4 miles

Again on the treadmill because it’s too cold for me outside right now. A little slower pace (10:30), but it felt good.

Wednesday – 4 x 800 5K pace

I walked for 1/4 mile to get warmed up (my usual routine) then did the 800’s at 9:00/mile pace and walked for 2 minutes between each one. I think I can up my pace a little the next time I do intervals.

Thursday – rest day

I ran some errands after work. I’ve been wanting a pair of compression socks for awhile, so I went by a local running store with a gift certificate I got for Christmas and picked up a pair. Then I met a friend for a birthday dinner. We filled up on yummy burgers.

Friday – 2 miles and strength

A nice quick run (10:00 pace) and then got in strength training. Friday night was spent checking out the opening ceremonies for the Olympics.

Saturday – cross training

I did 30 minutes on the elliptical and walked for 25 minutes on the treadmill. The perfect workout for a Saturday morning. Then it was off to the salon for a haircut. Saturday night was girls night complete with pizza, girl talk, and some Sex and the City. I made these chewy graham cracker – chocolate chip bars for the second time in two weeks. They’re soft, chocolaty, and only 3 ingredients. The best part is, they’re a Weight Watchers recipe, so you feel even better about eating them. 🙂

chewy graham cracker bars

Sunday – 6 miles

Long runs on the weekend are back! That’s actually the part of training that I’ve missed the most. Today’s run wasn’t ideal because it was all on the treadmill. The run went fine and I had some Olympic ice dancing to keep me distracted, but I hope it warms up a little soon so I can do these outside!

treadmill run 2.9

Post run, I put on my new compression socks to chill out for the afternoon.

compression socks

What spring races are you training for right now? Did you watch the Olympics Opening Ceremony? What events are you excited to watch?

New Kicks

There’s nothing like a new pair of running shoes! Especially when they’re a pretty color. 🙂

Ready for spring training
Spring colors for spring training!

The timing is perfect because training for Goldy’s 10 mile starts on Monday. I’m so excited to get back in the routine of training. I was pretty sure I’d end up going with the Pearl Izumi’s again (which, as you can see, I did), but I tried on a couple other pairs just for good measure. In the end, I decided “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

While I’m excited to lace up the new kicks and start breaking them in, it does make me a little nostalgic to retire my previous pair.

Old shoes when they were new
Old shoes when they were new

These shoes got me through some big races and a lot of training runs. I bought them right before Ragnar Relay this past summer–200 miles, 2 days, 12 people, 2 vans, 3 legs to run, and LOTS of memories!

The whole Lumberjack Heroes team!
The whole Lumberjack Heroes team!

After Ragnar, I was focused on training for my 1st and 2nd half marathons. My 1st half stands out in my mind as a milestone race for me not only because it was my 1st half, but because it fell on my birthday and was a great way to kick off a new year.

Photo credit: Hyedi :)
Photo credit: Hyedi 🙂

My 2nd half is also high on my list of favorite races. It was the Las Vegas Half Marathon and I ran it with Team Challenge. Running down the Las Vegas strip donning the orange Team Challenge singlet and raising funds and awareness for this great organization was an amazing feeling I won’t soon forget. I’ll definitely be back for another Team Challenge race one day!

Finisher photo hi res

With all of the races I’ve already registered for this year, and some that I still plan to sign up for, I know this new pair of shoes will take me to some great places too!

Do you ever get nostalgic when it’s time to retire a pair of shoes?
What are some of your favorite races from this past year?