Category Archives: Meatless Mondays

Since my husband and I can’t give up meat completely from our diet, we devote one day a week to go meatless!

Banana Split, Running in the Heat …and Going Vegetarian (say wha?!)

I have so many things to share.

Let’s start of with Saturday.

Hubby and I went to the sweetest festival on earth – Banana Split Festival. 🙂

Banana Split Festival

This small town in Ohio claims the origin of the first banana split. They commemorate the event each year in the month of June with a Banana Split Festival in honor of this classic dessert.

Ever since my husband and I lived here in Ohio in 2010, we come to this festival every year for the banana splits, car shows and events. It’s a great place to find local crafts too. I, of course like and support anything local.

A featured attraction at the Festival was the “Make Your Own Banana Split” booth where you choose how many scoops, what flavors of ice cream and toppings you want.

Banana Split Festival

Banana Split Festival

TOP (Mine): I had 2 scoops of vanilla frozen yogurt (uhm, if you haven’t checked out my crazy FroYo addiction, head over to this post). Topped with chocolate syrup, rainbow sprinkles, almond nuts, whipped cream and cherries! YUM!

BOTTOM (Hubby’s): He had 1 scoop of vanilla and 1 scoop of chocolate ice cream, and went crazy with the toppings. 😛

Banana Split Festival

Now dig in – Yum…Yum!

After we devoured our dessert we stayed some more and enjoyed the festive mood. It was really a street fair in nature – just good old fashioned fun. 🙂

I got so excited when I got my Runner’s World in the mail that day! I was touched by this issue’s cover photo. It has a photo of a finisher’s medal with a piece of black tape across it . It portrayed a very powerful message showing support for those affected in the bombing. I thought this issue is mournful but optimistic in a way to remind people to be stronger, move on, and never stop doing what they love. I will treasure this issue forever.

Runner's World July 2013

I wasn’t aware at first that I was wearing the colors of Boston Marathon that day
’til I I saw my copy of the Runner’s World in the mail. Such a coincidence! 🙂

Runner's World July 2013

I was so inspired so I grabbed a copy of one of these too.

People June 2013

Moving on…

I planned a 10-mile run on Sunday but I woke up late again. By the time I got my lazy butt up, it was already close to 8:00 am. I knew it’s going to be hot as hell after 8:00 am. It was supposed to go as high as 82 degrees later that day. I was debating with myself if I’d still manage to run outside or not, but I didn’t give in. I thought of heading to the trails to seek some shade and …. just run!

Just run

Southwest Ohio is generally pretty cool in the mornings for running. Usually, a run before 8:00 a.m is perfect around here. The “getting up really early” part to beat the heat is a challenge for me.

It’s funny that after living here in Ohio, when I hear people who run outside during the winter in negative degree snowbound weather, I don’t react weird about it; but when they tell me they went running during 95 F weather, I’d think they’re crazy I mean, bad ass!

My ideal running temperatures would range from 50º-55º. For me, that’s perfect! I’ll be flashing a big smile on my face throughout my run in that temperature. Greater than that, I’ll have issues… I’ll die! (Lol! Just kidding!) 😛

What is your ideal running temperature? When is it too hot for you to run?

I’ve only been running for just over a year now and within the year I’ve read some useful tips from the running gurus on training during hot days:
– Run really early or later in the day after the sun starts to set to avoid the heat of the sun.
– Avoid getting out there between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.
– Wear loose light-colored clothes.
– Run on shady trails or indoors
– Stay hydrated

Just Run

How do you run in the heat and not die? What are your hot weather running tips?
How hot would you say is too hot to run outside?

I usually run with a hand-held water bottle but I knew I wouldn’t get through 10 miles in the heat and humidity with just 8oz. water, so I thought of running with a CamelBak. This was actually my first time I had to bring one on a run. I don’t like carrying stuff with me on my runs, but that day I was thanking myself for thinking of it. I was able to stay hydrated throughout my run and I realized, carrying a CamelBak wasn’t bad after all. 🙂

Just Run

I didn’t have to stop for water but I planned my route where I can stop for water just in case I run out. My husband was on call for work that day so I ran by myself. I did multiple short loops in the trail staying close to where I parked instead of a long run out and back. That way, if I get too exhausted and dizzy, I can head back to my car easily to rest or stop early.

10 miles
Have you ever not run because you thought it was too hot- or what do you do to make sure you’re properly hydrated?

It was exhausting, but I finished 10 miles without collapsing. 🙂 I headed back to my car, rested for a bit, and had my much needed recovery snacks before driving back home.

Post-run fuel

I like to refuel with banana and coconut water/juice. 🙂

What is your favorite way to refuel after a run?

While having lunch at home, I watched this interesting documentary on Netflix titled, Vegucated.

Vegucated
It is about these three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks and learn what it’s all about. The director of this film, Marisa Miller Wolfsonused to make fun of her vegetarian friends until she became one. Like her, I used to never understand why people go meatless. Although I know greens are the way to go for healthy life, I grew up also knowing the importance of the nutrients we get from meat. That thinking slowly changed when I became conscious about my health and watched several documentaries about the importance and benefits of changing our diets to plant-based. I have seen quite a few videos about the meat and dairy industries but they did not affect me like Vegucated did. Among the films I’ve watched, this one, this particular documentary hit home the most for me!

I’d like for you guys to watch this trailer just to get an idea of what the film is all about.

After watching it, I felt sorry for the fish I just ate for lunch (Ugh! I’m so sorry fish). I was aware of how animals go through in slaughter houses from local news and newspapers but it never really sunk in to me until I watched this documentary. It showed what actually takes place in slaughter houses and how it’s really like for those poor animals. These cows, chickens, and pigs are no way different from the dogs and cats you love in your homes. It’s really emotional to see what these animals have to undergo JUST for us humans. I shed a tear and it opened my eyes to things I had not previously consciously considered. It changed my outlook on a lot of things. It’s been 2 days since I watched the film and I haven’t had a single meat intake since and I am feeling great. 🙂

I just can never look at meats and enjoy my half rack ribs the same way again. I don’t know how long I can handle not eating meats. As of now, my heart is still melting whenever I remember the film. I can’t say it yet if I can go all the way vegan but I know I want to. I am very inspired at the moment by this educational video to become a vegetarian. 🙂

So if you’re thinking or interested to go vegetarian/vegan or adapt a plant-based lifestyle, watch this film! I tell you, this documentary will DEFINITELY inspire you to do it!  It’s available on Netflix. And even if you choose to continue to eat meat, Vegucated will definitely teach you a lot of things. It isn’t the first film I have watched on this subject matter, but it is the first film that changed me.

Do I think everyone should be a vegan? No. Not necessarily. I don’t think vegetarian is for everyone. I think food is a personal choice. However, I do think that everyone could benefit from more plants and less meat and dairy. I totally agree that a mostly plant-based diet is generally better for your health and better for the environment

Have you seen Vegucated? What do you think of the film?

On a last note before I end my post, we recently celebrated National Running Day and enjoyed National Doughnut day, but did you know that it was National Iced Tea Day yesterday? I didn’t ’til I got this email from Dunkin Donuts! 🙂

Well, in this heat, every day is National Iced Tea Day for me!

National Iced Tea Day

Have a great day everyone! Stay cool!

Xoxo, JOTR
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Getting Into Juicing

I was all quiet the past few days thinking about tragedy in Boston. The city became close to my heart after my visit and the terror attack hasn’t left my mind since that horrible day.

Thank you for your comments on my previous blog post a few days ago. I appreciate all your kind words 🙂

I was glued to the live streaming video of CBS News Boston the whole day yesterday (literally) as they caught the marathon bomber. It was scary and intense! I felt so relieved when they finally captured him.

I’m confident to say that Boston will be okay. The nation will be okay. The running community will be okay. It will be hard for everyone to move on. It will take some time to heal but as what the President said, we will come back stronger and we will continue to run more marathons again! 🙂


Last night, a nice, peaceful, sunset run was just what my mind and body needed. I did a lot of reflection during this run in honor of those affected in the tragedy.

As you can tell from my previous post my emotions are a bit all over the place but, I’m going to try to resume normal posting as best I can.

So, this week, my husband and I have just started juicing. 🙂

We’ve watched some documentaries on healthier eating and have decided to start juicing. My husband really wanted to do this especially since all he’s done for the past 2 weeks was eat, eat, and eat. We ate delicious food all the time while in Houston and Boston. He was complaining that his belly was just getting bigger and bigger so he decided to make a dietary change.

We want to benefit from getting proper nutrients that our Filipino/American diet just doesn’t provide. We hope to lose weight from it as well. I like getting nutrients from the juice of fruits and vegetables I would never ordinarily be eating.

BEFORE

AFTER

So far, the machine we got for juicing is very easy to use and it does a good job.

My husband was the one who introduced the idea to me, so I asked him to make a video of it getting started to share with you guys.

Verdict: After four days of juicing I felt healthier and I noticed my skin is glowing and my husband already lost 5 pounds. I was more than a little surprised how much I enjoyed it. I think juicing is an excellent way to get more fresh vegetables in your diet. I wouldn’t be able to eat that much amount of vegetables and fruits in one sitting on a regular basis. I personally think it’s yummier than any juice you can buy at the store.


Our fridge is busting with veggies and fruits!

Juicing will now become a staple in our diet. It’s way better than buying packaged juice from the grocery store. I prefer my juice to be as fresh as possible to ensure the highest nutrient content. I like that I can control what I add to my juice.

Anyways, have you heard of juicing? Have you ever tried a juicer?  I would love to hear your experience with it.  Is juicing something you would consider? Do you know someone who is doing it?  I really value your input!!!

Disclaimer:
We are not compensated nor paid to do this. We bought our juicer with our own money. All thoughts and opinions expressed above are my own. 
Juicing is NOT for everyone. Do your own research or consult a certified nutrition expert and ask if it’s right for you.

Xoxo, JOTR

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JaOnTheRun
Instagram: @ja_ontherun

Vegetable Curry

I’m back for another Meatless Monday recipe!

I knew I was going to come home late from kickboxing class tonight and I didn’t want to worry about cooking when I get home so I decided to use my handy-dandy Crock-Pot today…and maybe for the next few days. 😛 I started preparing our dinner in the afternoon and enjoyed the rest of the day. 🙂

Tonight’s recipe: Vegetable Curry

Photo Mar 04, 7 34 46 PM

Ingredients:

  • 16-oz. pkg. baby carrots (I only used half)
  • 2 medium potatoes
  • 1/2 lb. fresh green beans – cut in 2-inch pieces
  • half green pepper, chopped
  • half onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. of minced garlic
  • 15-oz. can garbanzo beans, drained (I only used half)
  • 14-oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp. minute tapioca
  • 1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • chili powder – optional (we like it spicyyy!!)
Photo Mar 04, 2 10 47 PM

I started at 2pm. 🙂

Directions:

1.) Combine all ingredients in the pot. Pour broth over vegetables and mixed well.

Photo Mar 04, 2 23 31 PM2.) Cover. Cook on High for 3-4 hours or on Low for 8-10 hours.

Photo Mar 04, 2 23 21 PM

Photo Mar 04, 2 23 41 PM Photo Mar 04, 2 23 49 PM

Easy Peasy! Dinner was ready when we got home from workout. It was perfectly cooked and tasted good! My husband and I enjoyed tonight’s dinner while watching the latest episode of Walking Dead. This show becomes less scary the more you watch it. 🙂

#4 Meatless Monday

Today’s Meatless Monday dish is a simple recipe. I used vegetables that my husband and I would like to eat. You can use this as your template for whatever veggies you have in the fridge.

Grilled Veggie Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 1 small zucchini, halved lengthwise
  • 1 red pepper, stemmed, seeded and quartered
  • half onion, cut into 1/2 inch thick slices
  • 1/2 lb of asparagus
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 package corkscrew pasta – I used vegetable pasta made from tomato solids and dried spinach
  • 1 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 black pepper

Directions:

1.) Lightly brush vegetables with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

2.) Place the vegetables on a stove grill. Cook on low-medium heat until vegetables are tender.

3.) While vegetables are cooking, cook pasta according to package directions.

4.) Once vegetables are cooked, remove them from the grill and allow to cool slightly. Cut the vegetables into 1/2 inch pieces.

5.) Toss vegetables with pasta in a large bowl, add the remaining oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper; toss together.

Dinner is served. 🙂 YUM!

This is a perfect meal every time.

And I’m are so addicted to coconut water/juice. So refreshing

Goodnight!

#3 Meatless Monday

Mostly on weekdays, I get to eat with my husband only at dinner time. That’s when I actually cook something special for both of us. During the day, I’ll have anything that is available and easy to prepare. Don’t worry, I don’t cheat on Meatless Mondays. 🙂 This morning I had my usual warm oatmeal, with cinnamon powder, banana and peanut butter. For lunch, I only had a piece of orange fruit. 🙂

So, most of the time, I can only have one recipe to post for Meatless Mondays. It’s usually what my husband and I had for dinner. 🙂

For dinner tonight, we had Garden Vegetable Stir-Fry served over rice noodles.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup rice cooking wine
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 package of Smart Strips® Chick’n Style Strips, 6 oz (seasoned veggie strips)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • carrots, thinly sliced
  • bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

1.) Boil your rice noodles according to package directions.

2.) While your noodles are cooking, whisk rice wine, water, brown sugar, lime juice, hoisin, cornstarch and salt in a small bowl.

2.) In a large non-stick pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add package of Smart Strips® Chick’n Style Strips; cook it according to package directions.

3.) Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, peanuts and ginger. Cook and stirring often about 1 minute.

4.) Add carrots and bell peppers, and cook, stirring constantly, about 1 minute.

5.) Add your rice wine mixture to the pan and stir to coat. Cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender and the sauce is thickened, about 5-6 minutes.

6.) Once vegetables are cooked, stir in cilantro.

It is now ready to serve over rice noodles.

It turned out so good! My husband wants me to make this again even on “non-meatless” days. 🙂

If you try this recipe, let me know what you think

P.S. Thanks @meatless_monday_recipes for featuring my recipe last Monday on their page today. 🙂

#2 Meatless Monday

* For breakfast:

  • Old fashioned oats (oatmeal)
  • Top with oats and almonds
  • Fresh blueberries
  • Half banana
  • Dash of cinnamon powder
  • Chia seeds
  • Splash of almond milk

Oops, I had to use Tupperware. All our bowls and plates were in the dishwasher. :p

* For lunch:

  • Romaine lettuce
  • Sweet red apples
  • Cranberries
  • Roasted pecans
  • Italian dressing

* For dinner: my version of Spicy Thai Noodles

  • 2 tablespoons crushed red pepper
  • 1/8 cup sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • whole grain thin spaghetti or angel hair pasta (your choice of any pasta)
  • green peppers, chopped
  • green onions, chopped
  • pine nuts, chopped
  • sesame seeds
  • cilantro, chopped (I used dried cilantro but fresh cilantro is better! 🙂 )

Directions:
1.) Combine 2 tablespoons crushed red pepper, 1/8 cup of sesame oil and, 1/4 cup of olive oil. Cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes.

Adjust your red peppers according to your taste. 2 tablespoons of red peppers will be really spicy (my husband and I like it spicy!). So, if you’re not tough enough, you can use 1 tablespoon or less. Your choice too if you want to omit olive oil and use pure sesame oil instead.

2.) After heating, strain out peppers reserving oil.

3.) Add 3 tablespoons of soy sauce and 3 tablespoons of maple syrup to the reserved oil

4.) Boil your pasta according to package directions. I only used half of the 13.5 oz. package of pasta (serves 2 adults with a little left over for my lunch the next day 🙂 ). We used Barilla whole grain thin spaghetti.

I found this idea on Pinterest that if you place a wooden spoon over a pot of boiling water, it prevents water from boiling over. It worked for me! 🙂

5.) While pasta is cooking, stir fry chopped green peppers, green onions, pine nuts, sesame seeds and cilantro in a pan until the pine nuts and sesame seeds are toasted.

5.) After pasta has cooked, drain the pasta and put it in a large dish or bowl. Pour oil mixture on noodles, toss until noodles are well coated.

Do not drain the excess oil mixture. Noodles will be served on a separate plate, anyway.

6.) Serve noodles in a separate plate and sprinkle with the chopped ingredients on top.

I ate it with my left over salad (from lunch) on the side.
Yes, that’s our snowflake plate. It’s August and I miss snowboarding season already. :p

If you try this recipe, let me know what you think. You can add chicken or shrimp (like how they serve in Thai Restaurants) but for the sake of Meatless Mondays, I had to pass on those. Maybe next time. 🙂

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! 🙂