Tag Archives: running blog

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.

Pure Pilates

I’m excited today because this will be my very first post talking about Pilates :).

I love love Pilates. I’ve only started doing it a few weeks ago, and I became hooked after my first class. I didn’t know that it was hard so I struggled at first. It is not as easy as it looks but I enjoyed it! From then, I commit a day of my week for this workout. I also learned that adding one Pilates workout each week will make a difference to my running. It takes more than just strong legs and lungs to get the most out of a good run. Experts say that having a strong core — back, chest and abdominal muscles — is vital for breathing, flexibility, balance and endurance. Core strength is the primary force that controls motion in the hips and spine when you run. Weakness or lack of sufficient coordination in the core muscles can lead to less efficient movements, compensatory movement patterns, strain, overuse and injury.

Aside from it being hardcore, I think it’s the only workout that I can actually wear fashionable and cute workout clothes. I’ve developed this recent obsession for Lululemon clothes. Their workout clothes are sooo cute. And don’t you just like the idea of still feeling and looking fresh and relaxed after a tough workout ;). As in literally, you can go meet up with friends for dinner right after without looking so worn-out and tired.

all prepped and excited for my Pilates class

I use my ToeSox every time I go for my Pilates class. They keep my feet warm. The non-slip dots on these make them perfect for moves where a firm grip on the floor or mat is essential. They are so cute and I love them.

Share your thoughts and experiences too in the comments section below. I can literally talk about Pilates with you any time of the day 🙂

Gloomy Weather Antidote

I woke up to a very dim morning today.  I immediately checked the weather online as I prepared my usual warm oatmeal for breakfast.

Source: weather.yahoo.com

The forecast calls for mostly cloudy scattered showers and thunderstorms for the next few days :/

Honestly, I was never really O.C. about checking the weather reports before. I guess this is something you acquire when you become a runner. The local weather forecast becomes your No. 1 planning tool. You base your training schedule and what workout clothes to wear according to the weather forecast.

For lunch today, I  had chicken on wheat bun with lettuce, onion and tomatoes, and pickles and bokchoy on the side.

I went to the gym at around 5:00 pm today to attend a workout group class. The class is a combination of cardio & weights.  It was tiring but fun.

So, my gloomy weather antidote would be watching the first episode of the new season of Breaking Bad tonight with my hubby. We love this show and is definitely one of our favorite TV series.

How about you?  What are your favorite series to watch? Feel free to share on the comments below. 🙂

Trail Running Tuesday

I still have to get used to waking up early in the morning. I am sleeping late this summer because it’s tough to start feeling sleepy when you still have the sun so bright & shining at 9:00 pm! Yes, I’m blaming it on the sun :). Then, I’ll get to feel really sleepy around 12:00 to 1:00 am. Apparently, my supposed target time to wake up at 6:00 am today to avoid the heat for my morning run did not happen. I woke up late today at around 8:00 am and there was the sun, up and hot already. So, I decided to hit a nearby trail for my run instead.

It’s definitely nice to run in the shade in a hot, hot day and getting out there with nature. I’m happy to finish a 3-mile run despite the hot & muggy weather.

I love my Brooks top that I wore for my run today. I love how it kept me cool and held up to the heat and humidity. It is very thin and lightweight and has become my favorite top to wear for my runs in these summer days.

Women’s Epiphany Short Sleeve
source: http://www.brooksrunning.com

After my run, I made a bowl of oats for breakfast, with a dash of cinnamon powder, top with blueberries and splash of 2% fat milk, plus my coffee, of course. 🙂

A delicious and healthy breakfast gives me just the right start for my day. I really hope I can be out of bed really early and make great days ahead. I will definitely try harder next time.

I also want to share what I had for snacks earlier today. I love to snack on Wheat Thins with hummus…ohhh it is so delicious. I became obsessed with Wheat Thins when I tried it before with Laughing Cow cheese. Good stuff!

For lunch, when my husband and I crave for some southern style barbecue, we go to our favorite restaurant just minutes away from us. We love their smoked barbecue ribs. We usually eat it with spicy sauce, mac n’ cheese, and baked beans. Yum!

The owners of the restaurant are very friendly and really know how to cook southern style barbecue. They are originally from Arkansas – true authentic southerners. That explains why they make their barbecue so good.

I served an easy and quick to prepare steamed fish fillet & asparagus for dinner tonight.

I seasoned the fillets with:

  • Olive oil
  • Cilantro
  • Lemon pepper
  • Garlic salt
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Lime juice to taste

And steamed them with the asparagus for about 17 minutes.

I love our Black & Decker Food Steamer. I think it’s the best purchase we had from Macy’s. We had it for over a year now and use it almost everyday. It not only steams vegetables and fish to perfection but also chicken and shrimp as well. We love to steam our rice in this too. The rice actually comes out perfect and fluffy unlike with the typical rice cooker that uses direct type of heat, it burns the rice at the bottom.

Once cooked, I drizzle the asparagus with

  • Olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Salt & pepper

There is a lot of good TV shows every night. Our fave shows on Tuesdays are Hell’s Kitchen and Master Chef.  I’m going to take it easy and relax in front of the television tonight until bedtime.

Have a good night everyone!

Kickboxing Monday!

Yesterday was not a typical day for us. After church, my husband and I got busy house hunting. Yes, that’s right! We are looking for a house to live in next year. My husband got a job offer for next year and looks like we are staying here in Ohio for another 3 years or so.

We decided to look for houses close to the trails where we go for running and biking, -close to my husband’s future workplace too!  Here are some of the houses that we looked at:

I like the his & hers vanity sink multilayer design.

Leo likes a big entertainment space, while I prefer a nice kitchen. We also like the layout of the master’s bedroom.

It was a fun experience house-hunting yesterday. Good thing we started looking early. It’s fun to look at the model homes but choosing a house can be an arduous task. There are actually a lot of things we need to consider that we haven’t done yet when looking for a house. Well, at least it was a good start to see those model homes. It gave us ideas what to look for and what we need to know.

Okay, enough with the Sunday adventure. Every Monday is my schedule for a workout at the YMCA. I attend their 6:30 pm kickboxing class. We did mostly upper body strength work with hand-held weights today. It is a high energy workout but I find it a great stress reliever.

A pic from our garage. Just got home from kickboxing class.

I also just want to share one of my favorite snacks that I had earlier today. The heat is making me crave for frozen treats. Here’s green tea popsicle! Available in any asian stores. So good… and only 100 calories a bar! =)

I hope everyone had a great weekend and are ready for another awesome week ahead! Goodnight!

A Relaxed Saturday

My husband had a long day at work yesterday. So today, we decided to just stay at home, relax and spend time together. To liven up our lazy morning, we started off with this yummy broccoli and eggs I prepared for breakfast. It’s good I promise!

  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • shredded cheese
  • salt & pepper (optional)
  • salsa as topping (optional)

1.) Heat oil over medium heat in a frying pan.

2.) Add onion and stir-fry for 5 minutes, or until translucent.

3.) Add broccoli and cover for about 2-3 min or until broccoli starts getting soft.

4.) Stir occasionally.

5.) Pour egg whites over broccoli, add salt & pepper to taste (optional).

6.) Add shredded cheese and cover until melted.

8.) Serve this with your own choice of salsa (optional). This is great for lunch and dinner too! However, I ate it this time with a sliced of rye bread instead of salsa.

I know this sounds a little different, I thought so too when my aunt had me over for breakfast at their place. Then it became my favorite way to eat eggs. Try it! You will not be disappointed. 🙂