Tag Archives: health

Sweet Victory! – Hudepohl 14k Run Update

We did an awesome race last Saturday. It’s called Hudepohl 14k Brewery Run. My husband & I had a blast and I’m so excited to share the best finisher medal I have ever received…and seen so far. 🙂

Yes, it’s a bottle opener! The moment I saw a picture of the medal in their facebook page, I felt even more excited to run this race. I was so excited when it was handed to me at the finish line.  I thought it’s so cool and functional too. 🙂

Party after the race + a cool medal, it is indeed a sweet victory.

The race started at 8:00 am. We got to the place at around 7:30am. We still had time to do our stretching and take pictures before the race.

It was a bit chilly and windy that morning. Fall season is definitely in the air =). I had to wear my arm bands. I like my arm bands because I can easily remove and tuck them in my spi belt when I am already feeling hot from running.

The after-race party was held outside of this restaurant Moerlein.

Some ran in teams in their costumes and this team was my favorite!

Ghost Busters!!! 🙂

Some people I met from that day are running this race as part of their training for their Fall Half Marathons and Marathons. I’m running a half-marathon too (my second one! yay!) in November and looks like we all thought of same thing. The fact that we are getting a cool medal out of our training, definitely a great idea, right?! 🙂

I finished in 1 hour and 34 mins. And this is me, so happy to finally get hold of that precious medal! LOL! It is definitely run-worthy! 🙂

After the race, my husband and I went back to our car to freshen up, change our clothes and get ready to party. Our bibs have actually stubs attached to it that we can peel off to redeem our free food and beer.

My husband looks like he’s enjoying his share of beer.

There were 2 stubs for each individual for beer. One glass of beer each was enough for my husband and me. We had to give away our other stubs to other people. Those two guys who we gave our stubs to were so happy. Hey, never turn down a free beer. 🙂

But we got use of all the food stubs we had! We were so hungry after the race.

I can turn down alcohol, BUT NOT free food! LOL! 🙂 …Especially after a run. :p

One more pic before I end this post. I just want to share this beautiful view at the party – one of the bridges connecting Ohio to Kentucky. 🙂

I absolutely love Cincinnati races. I did the Flying Pig Half Marathon last May and I fell in love at the beautiful scenery in both Cincinnati and Kentucky. You guys should come check out races here in Cincy! You will definitely enjoy it. 🙂

That’s it for now! Hope you all had an amazing weekend too.

Happy running everyone.

Race Day Again Tomorrow.

It’s only been 2 weeks since MudStash 5k and here I go again for another race  …TOMORROW! 🙂

I’m doing a local race called “Hudepohl 14k” together with my husband. 🙂

After all, I usually do my long runs on weekends, I thought, why not just join this race and get a medal out of it. 🙂 LOL!

But seriously, who wouldn’t get attracted to this kind of ad?! 🙂

Looks fun right?! 🙂 Race & Party, that got me right away! So, I signed up for this race since for me, it’s easier to do a workout when you’re having fun.

A while ago was packet pick-up, so my husband and I went to the pick-up place and I was so excited to see that their women’s technical shirt is in pink! Yay!

Here are some of our race goodies and we’re still getting more freebies tomorrow! 🙂

I also saw a picture of the medal that we’re getting, it’s actually pretty cool! I will definitely update you after we rock this race tomorrow.

Good night everyone!

Mud Run Experience – Long overdue update!

Hi readers! It’s been a week since I updated my blog. My husband and I were out-of-town for a week after the Mud-Stash. And now, I’m back! I was only updating my Facebook and Instagram the past week. Please follow me on Instagram (username: ja_ml) if you haven’t already.

So, last Saturday, Sept 8 was my first Mud Run ever!!! I had so much fun! I did it with my husband and uncle. Our time slot was at 9:30 am. We got to the place around 8:30 am to check in at the registration area, get ready, take pictures and walk around the place before the race. 🙂

According to the Obstacle Course Ranking, Mud-stash is one of those races you have to check out. They ranked it as their Top 7 best obstacle course. Although, they described it as not as difficult compared to other obstacles races like Tough Mudder and Warrior Dash – where you crawl under live electric wires (I’m glad, we don’t have that! Thank you!), still, the race was difficult for me. Or maybe, that’s just me since I was a newbie. I hope it gets easier the next time I sign up. Yes, I’m definitely doing it again!

Honestly, I had a hard time in some of the obstacles but I made sure to complete and do everything! I’m not really a fan of heights and I have to admit that some of the obstacles freaked me out a bit, but I learned to calm myself down during the process. I didn’t let myself think too much about the height factor. I just concentrated on where my feet were going. I did the obstacles slowly (and carefully), but surely 🙂 I wanted to survive the race with a smile on my face and injury free.

It rained the past few days and that morning before the race. The rain made the course really muddy and slippery! It made it tougher to climb up and down the hills and hold on to the ropes. The venue is a ski resort during winter, so I already expected slippery hillssssss during the course. Hills were endless!!!

Some of the pictures below are clips from our video. These pictures are just some of the highlights during the race. My husband recorded our mudrun with his Contour GPS video camera. He strapped the video camera on to his head and recorded the whole thing while doing the race. You can watch our video here.

We called our team “The Three Mud-Skeeters” 🙂

The atmosphere was so much fun! Music was blaring from huge speakers. They set up the place where the spectators watch from the deck of the Main Lodge. This gave them a nice view of the participants crawling through the mudpit. 🙂 From the deck, you pretty much can see some of the obstacles. I thought that was a cool idea. They also had a stage set up for the band and host beside the mudpit.
Next picture was one of the obstacles – it’s called Ice Pit. We saw it being filled up with buckets of ice before the race. That’s going to be cold!
These are some of the obstacles that you can see from the deck.
Crawl through Pipes.
Slip n’ slide.
Cargo Net Climb.
Barrel Bash.
I wasn’t able to count how many obstacles we had in total. There were a lot of mud pits and streams that we had to cross. I tried doing all of the obstacles but I fell on the monkey bars after one swing. I had to pass on that. LOL.
That’s me waving at the camera, still happy, so clueless :), and all smiles before the race.
There were duct tapes available at the starting line. They encouraged the participants to duct tape their shoes but I skipped it. Anyway, I made sure I tied my shoe laces really really tight.
At gun time, we let other people go ahead of us first. We waited for about 5 minutes before crossing the start line so we don’t have to wait in line for the obstacles.
And the hills begin…
Some random container that we had to pass through.
Deep mud ahead!
My husband and I got STUCK! LOL! 🙂 Not bad for our first obstacle. 🙂 The mud was very sticky. I thought my shoe would come off. I was freaking out in my head. People from the deck were watching & cheering for us. I had no choice but to survive. LOL!
We made it through, eventually.
…crawled through pipes
… ran through mud pits
…muddy creeks
…more hills
…more creeks
…and more hills
…climbed on cargo nets
…ran through heavy barrels
…endless hills
Water Mist. This was my favorite part. 🙂
We were washed clean and cooled off at the same time.
This was the part where my legs started to cramp up. We had to make big steps going up this steep hill and through logs.
Some of the participants rested for a bit. I feel their pain. This part was hard!
…going down through ropes to the stream
…and climbing back up again
You’ll see beautiful views once you made it to the top. 🙂
They called this “Jacob’s Ladder”
Off to the Cable Bridge where an official photographer was waiting. 🙂
Our first crawl through a mudpit. 🙂
…more mud pits
This was a long walk through a stream that goes deep up to your chest at the end.
…balanced through those beams
Here comes the part I have been waiting for, the dreadful monkey bars. LOL!
We had to swing on 16 bars. But, after my first swing, I fell to the muddy ground. LOL! 🙂
They called this the “Lilly Bads”. I love this obstacle. I had fun doing this. It was quite hard to balance on those but I was able to cross without falling in the water. 🙂
Almost at the final leg of the race. Few more obstacles to go.
One last uphill to the Slip N’ Slide.
It was so much fun! I felt like a kid again. 🙂
In the Ice Pit. Brrr.
One last MUD PIT!!! This one was tough. It was like your stuck in a quick sand. It was really a challenge because I was already tired from all the running through the hills. To top it all, the spectators were just right there above watching, so I really had no choice but to drag myself out. LOL! I loved it though. 🙂
…off to the last obstacle
One more obstacle to go! 🙂
I MADE IT! 🙂 One Mud Run under my belt!
They provided a pre-rinse station at the finish area.
They also provided Mobile Shower Trailers with hot water which I thought was awesome! This event was so organized!
I’m glad I signed up for this. This is something beyond my comfort zone, probably beyond my physical means but I loved every minute of it! Never thought I would do something crazy like this. It unleashed the sporty side of me. Definitely worth the experience! 🙂
Our medals look so cool, by the way.
…and so are our souvenir shirts which I will have to show on my next post. I plan on wearing the shirt on my next kickboxing class. 🙂 I’ll post a picture soon. 🙂
I had a blast and I am so thankful my husband was there to run it with me! He is awesome!
He did a great job too 🙂

I am hoping for more races like this for me in the future! 🙂 I tell you, I’M ALL IN!

T-Minus 1 Day ’til MUDRUN!

I was planning on taking it easy on my run today because my mudrun race is on Saturday. Yep, 1 more day to go!

I don’t know what happened but I ran 3.1 miles in 30:18 mins…

and it felt good …AND EASY! 🙂

This used to be my goal when I was doing my interval training. I feel proud of myself that I can finally achieve this with my improved comfortable pace. I worked hard on my interval training and it finally paid off. There’s no way I am stopping what I’m doing. I will definitely keep going to get better.

I can now relate to this quote. 🙂

I regularly check updates for our Mudrun on Saturday. I saw in one of their pictures that they’re having monkey bars as part of the obstacle course. So, a few days ago, I went to the park to try the monkey bars.

This was my attempt on the monkey bars…

I failed by the way. Haha. I have weak upper body strength.

O well, I’ll just have to figure it out on Saturday.

Tomorrow will just be rest day for me. I need to prepare myself for next day’s Mudrun! It’s going to be fun! I’m excited!

I will definitely update you guys. Wish me luck. I’m going to need it, -especially on the monkey bars, LOL! 🙂

Get Off The Road. Go Nature!

What better way to start off Labor Day weekend than with a Saturday Morning Trail Run!!! My husband and I are still in high spirits from our last week’s trail running in Indianapolis. So, we decided to check out Ceasar Creek State Park Trails for our Saturday morning run. 🙂

It is one of the most scenic trails here in Ohio. It’s a 13+-mile loop trail for hiking/running. There’s actually a race event here on Sept 29 – White Tail Trail Half Marathon and I’m now thinking of signing up for this. The race is too soon, but we’ll see!

They do have other events too like Triathlons and Duathlons.

If you’re the outdoorsy type of person, I recommend to check out their website because there’s really a lot to do here depending on the types of things you enjoy. Next week, we’re checking out their mountain bike trails to challenge ourselves running through the hills. 🙂

Our pictures below are clips from our video that my husband took with his ContourGPS. If you’re a lover of all things action and outdoors, this camcorder is for you. Feel free to post your questions about ContourGPS in the comment section below. My husband would be willing to answer them or even make a review about it for you. 🙂

Watch our trail running video here.

We arrived at the trail around 7:00 am.

As we continue to follow the trail, it led us to an open field overlooking the lake to our left side.

Of course, I couldn’t let it pass. I had to stop and enjoy the scenery.

And this is me telling my husband, “look there’s the lake!” 🙂

For the most part, the path is nice and wide.

It can also be narrow, bushy and rocky in few areas.

There are a few obstacles along the way. We had to hurdle on some roots and tree branches, and climb on few hills, which I think made our run more fun and challenging.

And this is how my husband dealt them.

Some parts are right next to waterfalls where you do some water crossings, but they’re completely dry this time of the year.

During the course, we allowed ourselves to stop for a while and appreciate the surroundings.

According to my watch, we ran 6.14 miles, with a little bit of walking and sightseeing on the side :).

That was one very relaxed 6-mile run! It’s very relaxing to be surrounded by trees and wildlife. I’ve heard that once you start trail running, you won’t want to go back to the streets. I know the road may seem more convenient but sometimes you should “treat” yourself to something nicer. I feel the trails would prepare you just fine for your road races. You will be ready for anything and your body will be even tougher because you work a lot harder. It’s not just flat ground…you are going uphill, downhill and leaping over things. You tend to have a forefoot strike rather then a heel strike which is what you should be doing to avoid foot injuries. The ground is soft, covered with leaves, dirt and grass which is actually better for your joints. I feel like my knees are thanking me for giving them a break by running on trails every once in a while. 🙂

For me, trail running shoes are not really a necessity, unless you are really serious about trail running. I know a lot of people use their regular road running shoes on trails and they work just fine. My husband and I bought ourselves a pair, anyway, since we know we’ll be doing a lot of trail running in the future. We’re hooked!

I got theColumbia Ravenous Amphibian Women’s Trail Running Shoe in Aqua/Gray/Blk size 8.

I never knew Columbia have great running shoes. At first, I tried running with them on the road. This is definitely not forgiving on your feet when you run these on the road, but when I ran with them on trails… it’s heaven! It definitely felt more natural and is extremely comfortable. These shoes are sturdy but very light. It has very good traction. I don’t slip when I run in the mud and hills. They fit like a glove and breathable with it’s mesh-like design. It has Omni-TechTM waterproof feature which helps keep your feet dry when you run through puddles and water streams. Overall, a great shoe for running. These shoes are 100% recommended. I plan on wearing them for my Mudrun race which will be in 5 days from today.

My husband got the NEW BALANCE 610.

My husband is very pleased with the fit and feel of these NB shoes. I can’t say much about these shoes but when I asked him about them, he is happy and satisfied with them. Leave your questions on the comment section below if your want to more about his NB shoes. He’d be more than glad to answer them for you.

We really enjoyed running in this trail. We would definitely come back and try the rest of the connected trails northbound next time. We want to see where that part of the trail will lead us to.

I hope your three day weekend is treating you well! Happy Labor Day!

MUD RUN !!!

With all the hype going around, I finally gave in. I finally found the inner will and guts to sign up for my first obstacle race ….in the mud.

I am not gonna lie, the idea of a mud race scares me. But…never say never, right? 🙂

I am doing the race with my husband. We thought we’d try something different this time for a change. I’ve never done this before, so honestly, I don’t know what to expect. So, I began researching about these types of races online. I’m glad that majority of the people who have done it say it’s doable and fun.

I added a Mud-stash race countdown widget at the left side of my blog page and it says 15 days to go as of today (Aug 24). Yikes! I am both nervous and excited.

I’ll keep you guys updated. Wish me luck (I definitely could use it)!  🙂

To all hardcore mudathletes out there, do you have any tips or advice for us newbies? 🙂

How do we prepare for it? What type of training do we need to do for mudruns? What should we wear?

Do we have to be totally nuts and goofy to enjoy 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!

I Ran in the Rain Today!

Yep, I ran 3 miles in the rain today. When I woke up this morning, I heard rain. I peeped through our window and it was foggy, wet and rainy. I didn’t think twice. I changed into my running outfit, wore my cap, went out and did my (scheduled) run today… in the rain 🙂

It was trash day today. I had to hurdle on some trash bins along the way.

Who knows, maybe someday I’ll have to run a race in the rain. I just kept thinking, “this is way better than snow!” – which I have yet to experience. Yikes!

I love this running quote. So true.
(source: http://fitbie.msn.com/)

I had this picture as my iPad cover photo. So that every time my iPad alarm goes off in the morning, I would see it. This photo is my motivation to get up and get moving. 🙂

My iPad’s cover photo.

My run today was really exciting! It wasn’t raining too hard, just enough to keep me cool. I loved every minute of it! I love the feeling of the cool mist on my face. It was so refreshing. It made me feel like a kid splashing through the puddles. My shoes were soaked. It was definitely a new experience for me, since I never ran, danced or played in the rain before. My husband would sometimes joke about how fun-deprived I was growing up. Lol! But seriously, running in the rain today felt good. 🙂

I didn’t take any pictures during my run. I didn’t bring my camera because it is not waterproof. I am not sure about my watch though.

Are Garmin Forerunner watches waterproof?

For my post-running meal/breakfast, I had overnight oats topped with fresh cherries, cinnamon powder and sliced almonds. Yum! 🙂

How about you? Do you like running in the rain? Feel free to share your experiences below. 🙂

Overnight Breakfast Meal

My breakfast today had been waiting for me in the fridge since I prepped it last night. I call this my “overnight oats”. This is how I made it.

BTW, Lily’s is my favorite brand of peanut butter.

You can make this too in a Tupperware or bowl if you like. I just happened to finish a jar of peanut butter yesterday and thought of this as a better way to (really) finish off the few remaining bits of peanut butter in the jar.

The night before, mix

  • half cup of old-fashioned oats (yes, raw oats)
  • 6 oz. of yogurt (I used Dannon Fruit in the Bottom raspberry yogurt, yum!)
  • half a banana, mashed
  • splash of almond milk

top with:

  • diced peaches
  • sliced almonds
  • chia seeds

YUM!!! 🙂

Cover and let the mix sit in the fridge over night and enjoy it the next day for breakfast.

This would be great too when you’re in a hurry for work in the morning and have no time to prepare breakfast. You can just grab the jar from the fridge and take it out with you.

So, what are you waiting for? You’ll never know what you’re missing until you try this! 🙂

Interval Training

I did it today! I think that’s why I’m having a hard time typing this. I’m shattered! I’ve been doing interval training the past few weeks to improve my time and pace. My goal was to finish 3 miles in 30 minutes. I was able to do it in 32:10 minutes last time. Today, I did it in 30:50! 🙂 Well… almost! 🙂 Almost there! 🙂 Few more practice and I will eventually hit the goal.

To many of you fast runners, this is nothing, but for someone like me who just started serious running this year, I’m happy with my progress and I am hoping to improve more as I continue my training.

To run 3.00 miles in 30:00 minutes (using the 3/1 run/walk technique), I have to be in walking pace of 15:00 per mile and my running phase pace should be 9:00 minutes per mile.

I tried! 🙂

At split 16, my pace turned out to be like that because I was trying to figure out how to end my watch timer. 🙂 Next time, I will set my watch properly.

By the way, I injured my feet yesterday but this did not stop me from running today and attend kickboxing class yesterday.

I accidentally hit my right foot at the corner of our computer chair. It hurts a little when it rubs against my rubbershoe but I’m okay, pain is bearable. 🙂

Good night everyone! 🙂

#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. 🙂

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!

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! 🙂