Monthly Archives: July 2012

Olympic Spirit

I love the Olympics! My husband and I watched it on NBC last Friday and I think they did an awesome job, specially the part when they lit the Olympic torch.

Friday night, watching the Olympics.

Have you seen this video, Call Me Maybe – 2012 USA Olympics Swimming Team? Oh I love them! I thought it was cool. 🙂

YAY! Go Team USA!

Of course, I take pride for my original country.

Did you watch the opening of the 2012 Olympic games? What did you think of the opening ceremony? Which country are you cheering for? Which event or sport is your favorite?
I’m cheering for the USA and my favorites are Women’s Volleyball, Beach Volleyball and Swimming. What about you?

The athletes from that night’s opening ceremony inspired us. The following day, Saturday, my husband and I got up early and went to our favorite trail to do our morning workout and be active.

Me in my favorite workout shirt. 🙂

As you can always see in most of my pictures, I never leave without my handheld water bottle when I go for a run.

I got this when I was training for half marathon. It was when I realized that I need water bottle with me if I’m going to run for an hour or more. At first, I tried the hydration belts that my husband bought for himself.

It did not work for me. They jiggle and bounce around my waste and the bottles are in the way of my arms and elbows while I run.  It was very bothersome. I also think it looks a little bit tacky wearing those. I immediately thought of the Power Rangers the moment I tried them on. 🙂 I don’t know, that’s just me. 🙂

My husband thinks otherwise. He loves them. He said it is very comfortable and never bounces on him.  He has the Nathan Speed 4R Waist Pack. He survived his first half marathon with it.

half marathon.

I also tried the Camelbak hydration backpacks.  It doesn’t fit snug on my body and bounces around a lot as I run. I use it when we go snowboarding and biking. I think it’s designed for those kinds of activities, not for running.

Since I had issues with hydration belts and backpacks, I settled for handheld water bottles. I got the Nathan Thermal Sprint Handheld Bottle. I never had problems and survived my first half marathon with it.
I am completely happy with the product. Holding only 10-ounces doesn’t weigh down the hand too much. It fits comfortably on my hand and doesn’t leak. Easy to carry and you won’t even notice it’s in your hand. When I want water, all I have to do is squeeze the bottle. A valve opens and allows water out with a squeeze and then automatically shuts when you are done. Unlike other hand-held water bottle with a valve that you have to open and close with your teeth. There is also a small pouch where you can put your keys, money and cellphone. It also has a wide mouth so it was easy to refill with water at the water stations during the race.

How about you? What hydration packs/bottles do you use?

Going back to my morning workout, we are having cool mornings lately here in Ohio, which makes it perfect to go outside and have fun.

I ran 6 miles and it was easy. I never really notice my miles when I do my runs in the trails because I get distracted with the beautiful sceneries.

I talked about my house hunting adventures in my previous post. So after our workout at the trail, we passed by this beautiful neighborhood before heading home.

I just have to say that this is my dream neighborhood. This is the kind of neighborhood I like for our future home. I love the lake, the scenery, the ambiance, the walking trails, everything about it. It’s close to everything, to the city, to the trails, parks, and the ski resort that we go to during winter season. Just perfect!

We stayed for a while and relaxed (while dreaming) for a bit.

That’s it for now! I’m off to watch women’s volleyball. Once upon a time, I was a volleyball player too but these girls ROCK! Go Team USA!!!

Good Night!

My DIY Workout Shirt

I have this t-shirt that I never wear anymore because it’s a little loose on me now. I don’t want to get rid of it since it has a sentimental value to me. It’s my first race shirt from my first 5k race. This shirt will always be a reminder of where and why I started running.

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So, instead of just letting it sit in my closet, I turned it into a whole new workout top. 🙂

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DIY Workout Shirt

  • any old loose-fitting T-shirt,
  • a pair of scissors or cutter

1.a.) Cut the ribbed neckline.

b.) Cut the sleeves downwards starting from the shoulder curving down below the armpit seam. You decide how thick you want your straps to be.

 2.  Turn the shirt to the back and make a narrower racerback. Then cut a deep V shape from the neckline.

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3.) To give your tank a high-low look, lay your shirt sideways and flat. Starting a few inches from the front center of your shirt, start cutting diagonally until you reach the back. Fix the front and back center by cutting it a bit straight or else you’ll end up with a weird pointy shape.

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4.). Cut the bottom hem from the scrap of cloth from #3. Knot the string a couple of inches above the V.  Wrap the string all the way down around the center of the racerback. Knot the ends together tightly. Trim the loose ends.

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Clean up the edges of the shirt and DONE! .Throw it on with some cute yoga pants, grab your towel & water, and hit the gym!

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When you guys make yours, please share it to me. Email me your photos at jaml905@yahoo.com.

I’ll collect all your pictures together and feature them here on my blog. I can’t wait to see your creations!

What’s for Breakfast?

A yummy bowl of warm oats with peaches and blueberries. 🙂


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  • 1/2 cup of whole grain old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup of honey bunches of oats with almonds (extra granola, love!!!)
  • 1/2 tablespoon of chia seeds
  • fresh blueberries
  • fresh peaches, sliced
  • splash of almond milk

Plus, my warm brewed coffee!

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THANK GOD ITS FRIDAY! 🙂

Have a great weekend everyone!

Rainy Morning

Today, I woke up 7:00 am to a dreary, cloudy and rainy morning.

I was supposed to go out and run this morning but there was a steady pouring rain. I immediately decided to do my run in the afternoon instead. So, I crawled back in bed and went back to sleep 🙂

Just want to share this clever snack that I have been munching on lately. I love this tamarind candies from the Philippines that my mom brought for me when she visited last May.

It’s sweet, chewy and a little bit spicy. I was intrigued at first, but taking one would lead you to take another and another and another…it’s quite addicting really. To justify my addiction to this – tamarind is a fruit and I think it’s a better alternative that snacking on some potato chips. I saw this at the international store last Friday, so I’m guessing you can find this at any Asian Stores :).

Finally, the rain stopped by mid afternoon so; I went out and did my run. According to my watch, I finished 3 miles in 32 minutes.

I have been doing interval training the past few weeks to improve my pace from 11 minute/mile to 10 minute/mile. I made a goal to be able to run 3 miles in 30 minutes.  To many of you fast runners, that is nothing, but for someone like me who just started serious running this year, 3 miles in 32 minutes is a fantastic goal!

I would love to improve even more. How do you train to improve your pace? Does anyone have any suggestions what I can do to improve my speed? Any advice would be much appreciated!

While running around the neighborhood, I noticed a lot of mosquitoes flying around. This is usually my issue when I run in the trails, but not in my neighborhood. It’s probably not a good idea to run after a rainstorm. They were bumping into my sunglasses and bouncing off my face. I’ve swallowed a bug in the course of my run. YUCK! Does anyone have a problem of getting mauled by bugs during their runs too?

As my husband and I watched the TV while having our dinner, the news today said that mosquitoes carrying the West Nile Virus are increasing in Ohio. So far, the virus has been found in 213 samples across Ohio this summer. Last year at this time, Ohio had only 38 positive. Of course I got worried and swore to never leave the house without my insect repellent.

What can be used to repel mosquitoes when running? Does anyone know of any good products that will work? I tried OFF before but never worked for me. Bug spray would sweat off right away. I don’t want to avoid the trail and I am willing to try everything, especially with the skeeters carrying the West Nile Virus on the way.

Thanks and have a good and insect-free day! 🙂

Survived My First “Meatless Monday”

My first attempt of “Meatless Monday” was quite an adventure and I must say a learning experience.  I still need to educate myself more on meatless options for next week. I’m glad today was a successful experience for my husband and me.  We are definitely looking forward to doing it every week. 🙂

I had my usual daily breakfast of old-fashioned oatmeal. This makes breakfast a no-brainer. I love warm oats mixed with different kinds of fruits. For today. I had

  • warm oatmeal
  • top with cherries, oats with almond, chia seeds, and
  • splash of almond milk

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I just made a simple meal for myself for lunch. I stir fried blanched green beans with minced garlic, seasoned with salt and pepper, plus 2 small pieces of left over corns from our dinner last night. I seasoned the corn with cayenne pepper and Accent.

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We picked up a lot of peaches from the International Store last Friday, so I thought of using them for dinner tonight. I made my version of White Bean Lettuce Wrap with Pesto.

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  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • cayenne pepper (optional)
  • asparagus, sliced
  • 1 cup of sliced peaches
  • 1 can of white beans, drained
  • pesto
  • lettuce

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1.) I used cast iron, but you can use any pan you like. Sauté the onions in olive oil until translucent, and a pinch of salt and pepper to taste. Then add garlic.

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Note: I like my garlic crushed using garlic presser. It gives out more flavor to my dish.

Garlic presser crushes garlic cloves efficiently by forcing them through a grid of small holes. The peel remains in the press while the garlic is extruded out. It’s an alternative to mincing garlic with a knife.

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2.) Add asparagus and cook for about 2 minutes.

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3.) Add peaches and cook them until they release some juices. About 3 minutes.

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4.) Add beans and cook for about 2 more minutes. Seasoned with salt and pepper or cayenne pepper.

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5.) Turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes or so, so that the flavors can meld.

6.) Place lettuce leaves on plate and spoon in beans. Top it with a spoonful of your choice of pesto.

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They turned out so yummy and I loved it. My (meat-lover) husband loved it too. Yay!  Including fruit in my main course is something I should do more often.

In the hope you would consider joining me and participate in “Meatless Monday”,  I would love to hear about your experiences. Feel free to share your ideas and thoughts on the comment section below.

I am definitely feeling more excited about this and looking forward to more of my Meatless Mondays adventure! 🙂

Happy Weekend

Ok so, I have a lot of catching up to do.

Let’s start with my Friday.

My husband and I went to our favorite grocery store – Jungle Jim’s International Farmers Store. This store is a little far from our place (about 45 mins away), but we make sure we do our grocery shopping here at least once a month for our stocks of international goodies.

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Source: sonrisemorningshow.blogspot.com

You may have an International market in your area, but maybe nothing like Jungle Jim’s. This is THE place to go. They have just about everything you can imagine. Beer and wine selection are awesome, freshest fruits and veggies, fresh seafood, etc. They have a huge variety of cheese, dips… EVERYTHING. If they don’t have it, then probably it doesn’t exist.

We picked up a lot of vegetables & fruits, including cherries. When I picked up the cherries, I also picked up one of these.

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It’s a cherry/olive pitter and it was about $12 at the Kitchen Tools section of the store. I’m sure the pitter will become one of those tools that I’ll seldom use and will simply take up space in our drawer but it was 100% worth the purchase with a bunch of cherries I had to pit. 100% worth it!

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All I had to do was remove the stem and place the cherry in the center of the pitter and squeeze the pitter. I was left with a seedless cherry. 🙂 Pretty cool huh!

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The cherries are now ready to eat or add to my oatmeal for breakfast.

So, let’s go ahead to my Saturday.

We had a beautiful weather yesterday here in Ohio. I woke up around 7:30 am. Good thing it wasn’t as hot compared to the previous days. It was actually gloomy yesterday so I went for a 3-mile run around our neighborhood.

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I always have issues with shoelaces. They are simply too long for my narrow feet. I double tie them, but still dangle too long. So, I ordered Lock Laces online. I immediately tried them on as soon as I got it and the issues are gone! I want my shoes snug on my feet. Since these are stretchy enough, they don’t constrict your feet when you tighten it compared to the original lace. I love it and I’m a happy runner 🙂 Best product since sliced bread.

ImageI just also want to share that when running around our neighborhood, I prefer running on the road instead of the sidewalk. Concrete sidewalk is a lot harder on the joints than asphalt (road). Image

 After my runs, I love taking a shower with my Stress Relief Aromatherapy Smoothing Body Scrub (from Bath and Body Works).

ImageI AM IN LOVE WITH THIS BODY SCRUB! It gives my skin fresh and clean feeling! This is a perfect treat for yourself after a hard workout or run. I would highly recommend this product to anyone who loves the smell of Eucalyptus mint.

At noon, my husband and I headed to the theater to watch Batman.

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Don’t worry I’m not going to spoil the movie here with details. All I can say is you have to watch it because you are missing half of your life. It’s really good!

It’s surprising that the theater was still packed despite the news about the shooting. My heart goes out to the families who were affected by the shooting in Colorado.

After the movie, we headed back home right away. We invited our friends to come over for dinner at our place. I prepared lasagna, garlic bread and tomatoes with basil, mozzarella cheese, drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. My husband was the designated griller. He is really good at marinating and grilling meats. He grilled some pork, beef, chicken and corn.

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My apron says it all.

We decided to set up our table in our backyard to enjoy the cool weather. It was a fun night catching up with friends. 🙂

ImageFor today, Sunday = rest day! 🙂

Lots of  lounging around and relaxing in front of our TV today.

My husband and I still have a little hangover from the Batman movie so we decided to rewatch the first two films, Batman Begins and the Dark Knight.

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Batman movie + root beer float before we call it a day. 🙂

That’s it! Hope you all had a great weekend as much as I did.