15 Jan
2011

Rollercoaster run

I think I was on a high all day today from my run this morning. What a great way to start a Saturday!

I started off early this morning and had a great 15km run with the Runners Edge crew. Weather conditions were awful not the greatest… it was snowing and blowing up a storm. The roads weren’t plowed, so the footing was a bit difficult. What a fabulous run we had though!

Apparently, I run with my eyes closed.

Mentally, the run was a bit of a rollercoaster. For the first 6km I felt great, so postive and even more greatful to be able to start my day off with a run. It was pretty windy up until the turn around point. Once we did turn around, it was as if we hit a switch! It became calm, warm (okay, maybe not warm.. but warmer) and no wind. So that gave us an extra boost.

My left knee has been bothering me lately, which worries me. It did give me some trouble throughout the run but I was able to push through it. At around 13km I wanted to stop and walk.. my knee was throbbing and my muscles were sore from slipping in the snow. I’m glad I told myself to “shut up and run” because when I finished I had such a feeling of accomplishment and felt so great!

Running in weather conditions like today, the most important thing is being safe. Shortening strides and focusing on my arms, so I don’t fall and break my neck.

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19 Dec
2010

Treadmill success

This past weekend was full of family, festivities, running and SNOW. Lots and lots of SNOW!

Friday we went out for my hubby’s work party to the Copacabana, an authentic Brazilian barbeque steak house. For not being a big meat eater (Ok, for hardly being a meat eater) the food was delicous. I must say the service wasn’t all that great. Our server wasn’t overly friendly. Let me rephrase that: Our server wasn’t friendly and the Gauchos (the men who serve the fresh BBQ’d meat on skewers) weren’t that friendly either. Although all in all it was a nice evening with good company and good food.

The men planned to wear those 'nice' ties. Don't worry.. it's not a regular in GMan's attire.

Sunday it was VERY snowy and windy. The roads weren’t plowed yet but thankfully I was able to run on the treadmill. It has been probably about a year since I actually ran on a treadmill. I went through a phase where I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t keep my balance and totally felt like I was going to fall right over. Has this every happened to you? Or am I just crazy? Actually, don’t answer that second question…

I was able to get a good 30 min. run in. It felt great and I was even happier that I didn’t fall off the treadmill!

haven't fallen off yet...

Still going...

We spent time with my sister and her fiance this weekend which was really nice because it had been awhile….

Yes, we like to take pictures of ourselves... who doesn't?

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16 Dec
2010

Granola – quinoa style

So I tried cooking with quinoa the other day. OK, not cooking, but baking. I have been wanting to try it for awhile now since I’ve heard and read a lot about it and it’s healthy benefits.

What is Quinoa?

Quinoa (I’m not going to tell you how to pronounce it as I say it wrong myself most times. So pronounce it any little way your heart desires) is a seed that is originally grown in South and Central America. The seed is high in protein, calcium and iron, a good source of vitamin E and several of the B vitamins. It also contains an almost perfect balance of all eight essential amino acids which is another reason why it is considered a complete protein. Quinoa can be used as a grain and substituted for grains because of it’s cooking characteristics. The seeds are gluten-free which also makes it a great option for those who are sensitive to gluten. (source)

I bought my quinoa at the Bulk Barn although I’m sure it’s available at most health food stores. I decided to try quinoa granola. I figured starting out simple is the best way to go… from there the only way to go is up! I got the recipe from Bonnie over at Life to the full.

Let’s just say things didn’t start out smoothly since I realized after I already started rinsing the quinoa that I didn’t have a strainer. So by the time I finally got it rinsed, there was quinoa all over the place. From there, it was onward and forward. I found this to be an easy recipe which allows for variety depending on personal preference.

What’s needed:

~ 1.5 Cups of rinsed quinoa
~ 1.5 Cups of rolled oats
~ 1/4 Cup of maple syrup
~ 1 tblsp. of cinnamon
~ 1 mashed banana (rather than using butter)
~ 1 tblsp. of vanilla extract
~ 1 handful of sliced almonds
~ 1/3 Cup of chopped dates
~ 1/3 cup of dried canberries, sunflower seeds and chocolate chips.

*I always add in a few extra chocolate chips for good measure :)

Directions:

Pour dry ingredients into a bowl and then mix together. Add wet ingredients and mix until well blended with dry ingredients.
Spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake it at 350 for 30 minutes. Don’t forget to mix halfway through baking!

The granola was nice and crunchy when I took it out of the oven but when it cooled down, not quite so. I really enjoyed it with some milk, or mixed with yogurt with some maple syrup.

I would probably try cooking with quinoa again.. after I buy a strainer, of course. I understand why it’s healthy and it’s benefits but I don’t think it would be a regular in my diet as it does have a lot of calories and carbs. Although maybe the high fiber content is worth it? Maybe. I’ll think about it.

** I have tried this recipe again since Dec. 16th. I think I enjoyed it more the second time around as I wasn’t as intimidated or scared I was going to mess up. I played around with the recipe and added some almond butter and extra cinnamon. I realized afterwards that I actually forgot to add the maple syrup but it tasted fine! I definitely enjoy this for breakfast because it keeps me full for a long time.. and that’s hard to do.

Is quinoa a staple in your house? What do you like to cook it with?

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About

Thanks for stopping by! I am a runner, a wife, a stepmother and a cancer survivor. Hablo espaƱol and parlo italiano. I run hard, eat well, and I am trying to live better everyday because we only have one chance at this adventure called life. I will be writing about these topics and everything in between. Take a look around and stay for awhile!

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