Wednesday Tangents

Happy Wednesday! This post was supposed to go up last night, but well… watching 2 episodes of Gossip Girl in a sedentary state on the couch took priority. Sorry.  After a hectic Monday (Work, 5 mile run at lunch, work, catnap, 3.5 hours of Pilates Teacher Training), I was so excited to be able to get home at a reasonable hour last night, catch up on some much needed TV (Up All Night, Modern Family and Gossip Girl in particular), and relax. I mean I should really practice before Hawaii next week. (I’m still 1 episode out from being current on Gossip Girl so pleeeeease no spoilers!)

  • Speaking of Hawaii I have been Googling “Humpback Whales Hawaii March” for about a week straight and literally bursting and squealing with excitement over the fact that chances are high I will finally  see one in the wild. I will go nuts, I assure you. I’m hoping this happens to me. And that we will become friends like in the new Drew Barrymore movie.

  • I work in sales. On the last 2 days of each month my company caters in lunch providing free, unlimited food and preventing me from having to brave the sub-zero (practically arctic) temperatures of the outside world. Yesterday’s lunch included chocolate covered churros for dessert (we had a chicken/fish taco bar with brown rice, and black beans… my kinda lunch!). Thankfully, chocolate covered churros aren’t my cup of tea. Churros on the other hand are. Yes, you can have too much of a good thing.

  • The temperatures have officially dropped. It was 48 degrees at noon yesterday. My hands turned white when I walked to Plant to pick up a Green juice (celery, kale, parsley, apple, lemon). I would make a bigger deal of this but my hands actually frequently turn white thanks to a little Frenchman’s disorder called Raynauds. And here I thought I just had crappy circulation my entire life. Luckily this random rainshower we’re apparently going to be experiencing for the rest of the week has remedied the cold.
  • I love awards show. LOVE THEM. I watch every single minute of every single show,and then spend the entire next day clicking through all of the dresses, funniest one-liners, and goings-on of said awards show. So naturally, the Oscars are like the Superbowl of awards show season for me. And since you care – I was a huge fan of Emma Stone, Kristin Wiig, Angelina Jolie (say what you will, but the woman can own a dress), Jessica Chastain, Gwyneth and Natalie Portman.

Time to get to work! Have a great Wednesday!

 

The Return of the Workout Round Up

So since I’m not currently slaving training for a marathon, half-marathon, or any other race (and have never been happier to not have to do a certain workout), my weekly workout round-up posts have been lacking a little bit. I actually really liked posting them – they held me accountable, and gave me new ideas for workouts – whether it was switching something up, adding in something new, or reverting to something that worked. Never fear (not that you even remotely were), but they’re back!

Monday – “Accidental” 10 Mile Run. I really had no business running ten-miles, but the weather was perfect, it was a day off from work, and I felt fantastic. So why not? I ran Garmin-less (another way to keep your love affair with running from hitting any rocky points), and judging by the 10:30 apartment departure and the 12pm apartment arrival, ran it in about an hour and a half. I’ll take it! 🙂 Running without knowing your pace makes running seriously relaxing… and dare I say more enjoyable?

Tuesday – 5 mile run + Pilates Reformer class. I’m not really sure why I felt the need to both run and go to Pilates. Actually I take that back – I felt the need to go to Pilates because if you don’t cancel well in advance, they charge you. And trust me, I’ve tried every excuse in the book… they don’t care. I ran because well… I felt like it. It was a fast 8:17/mile pace that I ran at lunch on the treadmill while reading the latest Us Weekly. HIIT runs have fallen by the wayside a bit, and (full disclosure) I really just want to run… not worry about dealing with the damn treadmill every 20/40 seconds. Luckily I have no upcoming races for a while.

Wednesday – Pilates Reformer Class. This was Sara’s class, and she completely kicked my ass and I loved every, single, sweaty, heart-pounding minute of it. With an hour-long cardio/pilates circuit like that, there is no other form of exercise needed. One and done.

Thursday- Exact same workout/thoughts as Wednesday. Sweaty, red-faced, thirsty, starving mess by the end of it. Fan-freaking-tastic.

Friday – Slooooow 5-mile treadmill run (9:30/pace). I actually find it sick that I know think of 9:30’s as my “slow” pace. Sick and twisted. There was a time that 10:00/mile was my “fast” pace. Just goes to show what some serious dedication and hard work can produce.

Saturday- REST. I had 4 hours of Pilates Teacher Training, and while I purposely volunteered to be the guinea pig for the ab series on the reformer to get a little ab work in (we’re on our reformer module), it lasted about 3 minutes. I’ll take what I can get before the bikini in Hawaii next week!

Sunday – Pilates Reformer Class. I never go to Pilates on the weekends (mainly because they fill up before I can even think to register – you can register for classes 7 days in advance online) but I managed to get in off the waitlist earlier in the week, so I went for it. I’d never taken this particular teacher’s class before, and I absolutely loved her. My lower abs apparently loved her too because I can’t breathe in or out without feeling that hurts-so-good lower ab soreness. Weekend Pilates are and will always be rewarded with an Acai bowl at brunch with Kendall afterwards. 🙂

This was not the Acai Bowl I had at Plant, this was the greatest Acai Bowl known to man that I ate (two days in a row) at Chronic Smoothies in Pacific Beach.

What was your favorite workout last week?

Snack Attack

Happy Saturday! 🙂

I’ve been up since 7am, a bit early if you ask me, but I woke up, and got to it. I have to be at Pilates Teacher training in about an hour, and I hate rushing around, so the more time I have, the better.

I leisurely got ready, enjoyed breakfast, and I’m even running about 15 minutes ahead of schedule… perfect timing to pick up a latte on my way!

So the other night for dinner, boyfriend and I made salmon. Just a simple salmon- marinated for about 15 minutes in soy sauce and honey, and then baked for about 18 minutes at 400 degrees. The main course of the meal isn’t usually the tough part – it’s figuring out what to eat with it.

When we were deciding on sides, we thought a bit outside our usual box. Brown rice and/or quinoa just sounded so boring, and we wanted some greens, but also some crunch. Quite the conundrum.

Then I spotted this bad boy in the cabinet.

Then this happened.

Roasted Chickpeas

  • Rinse in a colander with water
  • Pat dry with paper towels
  • Rub the skin off
  • Toss in a bit of olive oil
  • Spread on a baking sheet (coated with olive oil spray)
  • Season as you wish
  • Bake at 400 degrees for 25-35 minutes (depending on desired level of crunch)

They were amazing. We could have finished the can in about 39 seconds flat. Next time, multiple cans will be involved.

It also occurred to me what a great appetizer, snack, really anything these could be. They’re healthy, but they still provide that “munchy” factor, when you just feel like picking.

Which is clearly what we were feeling because we also devoured an entire bunch worth of Kale Chips (seasoned with sea salt, lemon pepper and paprika). Also I just discovered that Trader Joe’s sells PRE-CUT Kale, eliminating the most tedious (we’re talking 4.5 minutes saved here people) step of Kale Chips. Naturally I bought 3 bags.

I’m the type of person that loves to munch and loves to snack. I love to munch when I’m watching TV, movies, reading magazines, playing games, etc. Really anytime. I love snacking.

However rather than downing an entire bag of pita chips, kale chips, roasted chickpeas and other healthy snacks like air popped popcorn and veggies and hummus give me the fix I’m looking for. Win-win. For everyone involved. Jeans included.

Off to Pilates Teacher Training for the next 4 hours (a latte will be absolutely necessary first!) and then enjoying this beautiful, sunny weekend.

Have a lovely Saturday! 🙂

The Nasty 5

Happy Thursday! Hope your short work-week is going well. Tues and Wednesday seemed to drag, but for some reason, this morning feels like it’s going by extremely fast! (I’m going to venture a guess and say it’s because I’ve been in the office since about 7:20. Apparently I’m really productive in the mornings when I want to be.)

Not even going to pretend a mug (or 2) of black coffee doesn’t help.

This week has been pretty busy – between Pilates Teacher Training, Pilates classes, running (so far this week? a 10.5 miler, a 5 miler and a 4 miler), work, and life, I’ve been exhausted at night, but yet still able to spring out of bed in the morning (again, really unsure when this happened to me.) On second thought, I credit the incredible weather SF has been having lately.

Going back to last night’s Pilates class – my favorite instructor was teaching (I base my favorites on how much I hate them during class, and how much I love them once class ends. In her case, on a scale of 1-10, I’m at about a 9.2 of hatred during class, and a 12 of love the second class ends. She’s that good.) She was a college athlete that found her way into Pilates, and she seriously kicks your booty.  So naturally, I was pumped for a solid workout.

Her method? 1 minute Tabata supersets of all the exercises, with quick pauses for water/stretching but then jumping right back into the next one. Your heart rate stays elevated the entire hour and by the end of the class you wish you were in yoga just so that you could take 5 minutes to lie on your back in the dark while calming music plays. And this is coming from the girl who usually hates that part of yoga. (And any situation where om-ing is involved).

Last night she incorporated an ab series to what I recognized from my teacher training as  what Pilates people lovingly refer to as “The Nasty 5”. Believe me when I say that these get nasty. (In an abs burning, all you want to do it put your damn head, shoulders, shoulder blades and neck down on the reformer/mat forever.) Ready to seriously tone your core? Give these a try.

“The Nasty 5”

  • Hundreds (video here)
  • Single leg stretch (video here)
  • Double leg stretch (video here)
  • Single straight leg stretch (scissors) (video here)
  • Criss cross (bicycle) (video here)

Going through these exercises, I like to do the hundred with my legs straight at about a 45 degree angle. The single, double and straight leg stretch shouldn’t be done super fast, but you can definitely pick up the pace a bit to really get the heart a-poundin. Doing a minute of each and then repeating the cycle 3 times will definitely get those abs burning!

You can bet that once I get to start teaching, my classes will be just as heart-pounding. You can sit and stretch at home, pilates is for toning and strengthening! (That being said I’m currently accepting volunteers for practice teaching… any takers? Seriously, it’s free.)

Time to finish up the day before heading to Pilates tonight! (With Hawaii a mere 13 days away I’ll take all the core-work I can get!)

Have a great rest of your Thursday!

The 3-Day

Hope you all had a lovely 3-day weekend! I for one would like to know why every weekend can’t be a 3-day weekend. I feel about 100 times more refreshed than I do after a normal weekend.

Our long weekend was a perfect mix of all the good things – running, pilates, food, wine, friends and relaxing. I honestly could have used a few more days!

After a late night Friday, I managed to drag myself out of bed at the ungodly hour of 7am on Saturday (after a few Grey Goose and sodas and a 2:30am bedtime the night before- ouch) to fit in a 4-mile run before Pilates Teacher Training at 9. I actually found out on Friday night that through work, boyfriend and I will be headed to Hawaii in 15 (!!!!) days, so the run was mainly fueled by thoughts of being on a warm, tropical, beach in juuust over 2 weeks. I gotta say though, I cannot wait for our vacation, fresh Hawaiian fruit and fish, macadamia nut banana waffles, and lots of cocktails on the beach! November to May also just happens to be when the Humpback whales take up residence off the coast of Hawaii bringing me thismuch closer to my lifelong goal of seeing a whale in the wild. It will happen.

A highlight of the long weekend? Heading down the coast to Santa Cruz (after stopping at our favorite Italian deli in Pacifica) for a double date night!  When we arrived, Keith and April (amazing host and hostess!) had an amazing spread of farmer’s market appetizers (cheese, pita chips, hummus, fresh fruit), and a refreshing Hanna Chardonnay. In lieu of going out for dinner, Keith broke out his Paella pan, we hit Whole Foods for ingredients, and he got to cooking! Hello homemade Paella, and about 6 more bottles of delicious Mazocco and Rosenblum Zinfandels.

I mean just look at it. Nice work Keith!

Saffron Rice, Haricot Verts, Fresh Clams, Fresh Mussels, Fresh Shrimp, Chicken, Roasted Red Peppers

We woke up Sunday morning feeling surprisingly refreshed and ready for a big homemade breakfast and a day at the beach.

A lovely weekend indeed.

We headed back on Sunday night after some beach-side appetizers and yours truly was in a coma on the couch by 9:58pm. I really am the life of the party.

Yesterday, after a refreshing 10-hours of sleep, we woke up ready to get back in the groove. I headed out for what was meant to be a 5-mile run… that magically turned into 10.5 miles, and boyfriend hit the gym.

When I got to my 2.5 mile turn-around for the 5-mile loop, I felt great, my legs were solid and it was perfect running weather (overcast, 60’s). Had it not been for the abundance of holiday weekend tourists riding extremely precariously on their Blazing Saddles bicycles, it would have been the most perfect run ever. 10 miles is the perfect long-run distance for me.

Pre-Pilates Teacher Training (I promise I’ll work on an update for that – we’ve completed the mat module and moved on to the reformer in our lecture series!) we settled in for a relaxing afternoon of Hollow Chicken Round 2, and to watch the movie 50/50. Have you seen it? Parts were an absolute sob-fest, but I really enjoyed it, thought it was very-well done, and it made me hate Anna Kendrick a lot less. (Seriously, was she not the most obnoxious type-A person in “Up In the Air”?) Dare I say I even like her now? Yes I do judge actors/actresses on the characters they play in movies, even if it couldn’t be further from the truth.

A lovely 3-day weekend indeed! What was the best part of yours?

The Hollow Chicken

Happy Friday! 🙂

I for one have been suffering from exhaustion all week and can’t wait for a nice, looooong 3-day weekend! (After the nice looong run I have planned for this afternoon. I’ll have a weekly workout round-up up tomorrow). We have big plans of birthday celebrating tonight, Pilates teacher training tomorrow, and then heading down the coast for the night on Saturday. Should be a great little weekend.

You all I know I live for breakfast. Not only is it the most important meal of the day, but more importantly, its delicious. I love all of the flavors – sweet or savory. I try to always be mindful of getting enough calories, protein, fiber, etc in at breakfast so that it sets the right tone for the rest of the day.

That’s why, when I recently discovered Anne’s blog (I’m not sure what rock I’ve been living under either) and saw all of her DELICIOUS recipes (I’ve printed out about 11 already), I knew I had to try her Simple Baked Oatmeal for on-the-go breakfasts.

And simple it was.

She’s currently getting her Master’s in Public Health/Nutrition, so you know these recipes are going to be good (and healthy!)

You can find her recipe here, and if you need further prodding to check it out, it looks like this:

And tastes amazing. Imagine it topped with Greek Yogurt, or fresh fruit. I made a batch last night, split it into ~8 servings, and then refrigerated it so that I can take it with me as breakfast at work, before Pilates, etc. This morning I microwaved it at the office, and added a spoonful of Peanut Butter to the top and it was so good I wished I had the foresight to pack all 8 servings with me. (Especially once the Peanut Butter met the warm oatmeal and got all melty and delicious.)

The only changes I made to her recipe?

  • Used 3T liquid egg whites (we were out of eggs)
  • Used dried cranberries (I despise raisins)
  • Used sliced raw almonds (no walnuts on hand)

Speaking of amazing. I don’t think I need to sell you on the most amazing creation we had for dinner last night. This meal was all boyfriend’s dreaming up, and I’ve already requested it as my birthday dinner (in November) this year. 😉

The Hollow Chicken Sandwich


  • 2 Acme Bread sourdough rolls, hollowed out
  • Homemade sundried tomato pesto
  • Cowgirl Creamery Mt Tam Cheese
  • Thinly sliced apples (we used a mandolin)
  • TJ’s Pulled BBQ Chicken (any chicken will do)

We baked the entire sandwich at around 350* for 10 minutes and ohmygod it was amazing.

Especially when washed down with our last Sam Adams Octoberfest beer. Crisp, refreshing, delicious.

It goes from this (extra apple slices were made into apple chips, and the extra bread was converted into breadsticks for dipping into a balsamic/olive oil/lemon pepper combo):

To this:

And is so satisfying and tasty without being heavy at all. A must-make! (Or try your own combination… just bake the entire sandwich.)

What’s your favorite sandwich?

Any weekend plans?

 

 

 

Protein Packed

Today’s post may or may not be all about food. You know how they say don’t grocery shop on an empty stomach? Well don’t blog on one either.

Lately I’ve been switching up work-meals a bit, and saving my protein smoothie for an afternoon snack once the munchies hit, and enjoying a different (but equally protein-packed) breakfast.

0% Plain Greek Yogurt, Berries, Cereal

The staying power of these babies combined is ridiculous. Dare I say it even keeps me full longer than the smoothie does?

Speaking of protein-packed, on our flight home from Vegas, boyfriend was reading Men’s Health and pointed out the easiest (and most protein packed) snack/small meal known to man. So naturally I’ve made it twice this week.

Here’s a hint: It takes exactly 2 minutes and 30 seconds, and you can do it at the office.

Coffee Mug Eggs!

image via

To make?

Spray mug with olive oil spray

Combine 2 eggs (or liquid egg whites – I prefer Eggology) in a mug, whisk as you would when preparing to scramble them on a stove top

Add in preferred mix-ins (Parmesan cheese, lemon pepper, leftover chopped steak, bacon, faux bacon, etc)

Cover with wax paper

Microwave 2-2:30 (or until you hear the “pop!”)

Top with a pinch of cheese or salsa

Enjoy!

I love this because you’re getting a ton of straight protein from the eggs, meat (should you add it) and cheese, and it’s easy and mess free enough to make at work (using liquid egg whites. I don’t recommend transporting whole eggs and dealing with them in your office kitchen if you’re trying to make friends).

The calorie count is kept low (even lower if you omit the cheese), but you’ll be satisfied for a couple of hours. Perfect for getting you to lunchtime, or to power through an early evening workout.

Mine may have looked a little less-pretty, but I assure you, tasted amazing. (I used a cereal bowl because I was too lazy to wash out my coffee mug. The things I will avoid when tired may astound you.)

In other food news, yesterday I discovered the ultimate.

Sweet Potato Pop Chips.

They are just as delicious as I envisioned (possibly more), and will be replacing both BBQ and Cheddar Potato in my daily Popchip consumption.

At lunch today I headed over to Heaven, otherwise known as the Ferry Building to pick up some supplies for what is going to be the tastiest dinner ever that boyfriend dreamed up last night.

Among my stops?


OK so mayyyybe the last one was just a treat for me. I mean how often does one pass by Blue Bottle and there are ZERO people in line? Too good to pass up a delicious latte.