Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Chardonnay 10-Miler Race Recap

Happy Wednesday! I'm hosting the Workout Wednesday (WOW) linkup again, with fabulous co-hostesses Diatta Harris from Femme Fitale Fit Club, Sheila Simmons from The Frugal Exerciser, Natalie from Clean Eating Teen, and yours truly!

As promised, I'm sharing a recap of my first 10-miler, but first I wanted to give a huge shout out to my friend Lauren who ROCKED the Boston Marathon on Monday! It was her first marathon and she finished in 4:30:46! What a rock-star!

(Image Source)
My race was much less impressive but I'm still pretty proud of myself. Here's how it went down. 

The Race

Saturday's race was the Santa Barbara Chardonnay 10-Miler. It's apparently one of the oldest races in the area and the course is along the beautiful Santa Barbara waterfront.

I picked up my packet the night before so race day went pretty smoothly. Race-day packet pickup lines were long but looked organized, there was plenty of Gatorade, water, GU and even coffee available. The only downside was the incredibly long line bathroom line, although to be fair I later heard there were more bathrooms a little farther away.

I thought the long bathroom and packet lines might delay the start, but the organizers managed to get everyone to the line just before 8:00. It was a fairly small race, with less than 400 runners, so there weren't corals or even designated runner, jogger, walker divisions. I lined up kind of a little front of center and, after a super-casual "on your mark get set go", we were off at about at 8:02! 

The hardest part of this race was getting passed SO MUCH. One of my race goals was to go slow to avoid burning out early. But it was really hard to maintain my pace when EVERYONE was running faster than me. Seriously, I turned around once to make sure I wasn't actually THE LAST ONE. There was a particular low point around mile 4 where a 65+ BAMF lady with a full head of silver hair breezed by me. I just had to tell myself to let it go, but boy was it hard on my competitive spirit.

I definitely started to feel my legs by mile 5, and all the getting passed was a little discouraging. I also never managed to find someone running at my pace I could try to stick with. But MapMyRun kept telling me I was running around my 11 min mile A goal pace and the gorgeous views kept me going.    

I didn't end up taking a ton of pictures, because once I stopped to walk it was really painful to start running again. So except for a brief walk to grab some water from the mile 3,5,7 and 9 stations and eat my Honey Stinger energy chews and waffle, I mostly at least maintained a slow jog.

A little before mile 8, we joined the regular beach bike/jogging path, which was open to joggers, walkers, and cyclists. I didn't feel like I was in danger of getting hit but I did have to weave around a bit, which was challenging. My legs were pretty dead by this point, but this was also when I finally stopped getting passed and even passed a couple people!

Around this time, I also saw a woman a little ahead of me. I picked up my speed when I hit mile 9 and started to gain on her. Then, as soon as I heard my phone say I only had a quarter mile left, I decided I was going to beat her. I thought "You may not know it, but we're racing now" and took off. I pulled ahead of her but wasn't sure how close she was so I kept pushing. Then I saw my awesome coworker Jill waving that pink sign, Maureen cheering, and my housemate Michelle taking pictures and SPRINTED to the finish line.

The Results

I beat my A goal of finishing in 1:50:00 with a chip time of 1:47:31! That's a 10:45 min mile!! So I know people run marathons (a lot) faster than that, but it's much faster than any of my long training runs. Oh and don't worry about my head getting too big. Coming in 321/377 will keep me plenty humble. Over half the race finished in under 9 minutes! No wonder I kept getting passed!

I still feel a huge sense of accomplishment for running my first 10-miler on 4 weeks of training much faster than I thought I could, and being fit enough to sprint at the end (and go out dancing that night ;) ). Plus I made it to the wine tasting, which was my most important goal of all!

Now on to the party!

Point & Purpose: The purpose of this link up party is to mix and mingle and support each other’s sites by visiting, subscribing and/or leaving a comment. Please do not drop a link here, disappear and not follow through by visiting other party goers’ sites. 

Theme: We are linking up blog posts, Google+ posts or Facebook posts related to FITNESS, RUNNING, HEALTH or WELLNESS.

Simple Rules:
1. Follow, Like and/or Subscribe to your hostesses and co-hostesses:
2.   Don't be a wallflower.  I can not stress this enough.  Show some comment luv and support to other party goers of this link up by visiting their blogs and either leave a comment on a post, subscribe or both!  Visit at least others who have joined the party.
3.  Also join our WOW Link Up Pinterest Board ( ) so you can PIN your post to it.
4.  Invite your like-minded friends!  We love finding and reading new blogs so spread the word so we can increase the size of our parties every week til we make the walls sweat!!!!  I told ya we party hard!  :-)
5.  Use hashtag #wowlinkup when you comment on someone's post for easy identification.
6.  Last but definitely not least, HAVE FUN!  This IS a party.


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Monday, April 21, 2014

Meal Prep Monday - Breakfast Burritos and Shredded Chicken

Happy Monday! I have a super busy week ahead but I'm feeling pretty confident about it. Must be because I ROCKED my first 10-miler on Saturday!  

I'll have a full recap on Wednesday, but for now I'll just say I not only survived to make it to wine tasting, I smashed my goals! Plus, I felt good enough to go out dancing that night and get all my meal prep done on Sunday! It was basically a weekend full of win. Except for winning the actual race. That's crazy talk.


I got a major case of food envy when my co-worker ordered an awesome breakfast burrito at our post-race brunch, so I decided to create a healthy freezer version. I found these tips for freezing burritos from The Kitchn really helpful and chose my filling based on my love of Mexican flavors and desire to try the famous Trader Joe's Soyrizo. 

"Chorizo" Breakfast Burritos

Calories: 315 | Fat: 13 g | Cholest: 6 mg | Sodium: 967 mg | Carbs: 34 g | Fiber: 11 g | Sugars: 5 g | Protein: 20 g

1/2 tbsp olive oil

1/2 a medium onion, diced
2 green bell peppers, diced
1 soy chorizo 
8 egg whites
1 ripe avocado, cubed
1 tbsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp garlic powder
2 tbsp salsa
1/2 cup light Mexican cheese
8 100 calorie tortillas (I used these)
2 cups baby spinach, washed and dried 

Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat.
Add onion and pepper and cook until onion begins to soften.
Crumble in the chorizo.
Stir in egg whites until they begin to harden.
Sir in avocado, spices, salsa and cheese until heated through.
Let cool to room temperature.
Divide filling evenly into tortillas, top with spinach leaves, and wrap tightly (see this video for tips).
Wrap each burrito in plastic wrap, place into a freezer bag, and freeze.
To reheat, unwrap plastic wrap, wrap burrito loosely in a paper towel, and microwave until hot, about 1-2 minutes.
Makes 8 servings.

These breakfast burritos are full of flavor and just the right amount of spice--a nice change up from my normal sweet baked goods breakfast flow. They freeze and reheat really well, and make the perfect handheld grab and go meal.


I had an Easter dinner to get to on Sunday, so I made my slow cooker shredded chicken again. I just dumped 1.5 pounds of boneless skinless chicken breasts in the crockpot along with chicken broth, mixed spices and powdered garlic, and turned it on low. And 6 hours later when I came back from dinner, I had delicious, moist chicken breast waiting for me!


I kept it pretty simple with this week's veggies too, roasting some sweet potatoes, mushrooms and green beans in the oven and boiling some frozen peas. 


Since I finished the Chardonnay 10 Miler, I plan to go easy on the running for a bit and do other things, like going back to that great Pilates class I loved.

Psst: Don't forget to wish my friend Lauren good luck at the Boston Marathon 
/her FIRST marathon! Read more about her story and how to follow her race progress here.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday Five - Chardonnay 10-Miler Race Goals

It's Friday!! That means I run 10 miles tomorrow! And I kind of feel like I'm getting sick. So I'm drinking crazy amounts of green tea, continuously eating zinc tablets, and carb loading with noodle soup. It's probably just my body trying to trick it's way out of having to run so much tomorrow.

(Image Source)

Anyways, instead of sitting here and wallowing in my hypochondria, I'm joining the DC Trifecta's Friday Five linkup as usual. Today's theme is fitness goals, so I'm sharing 5 goals for tomorrow's race.

First up, my three race day goals a la this advice from Run Eat Repeat, with 1 being the hardest and 3 being the easiest to achieve.

1. Finish in under 01:50:00 (11 min mile)
I'm not really sure how likely this is because i was over this for my curren- PDR-setting 8 mile run. But hey, race day adrenaline does amazing things right? 

2. Finish in under 02:00:00 (12 min mile)
Still feel this would be a respectable finish time considering I had a month to go from 5K to 10 miles.

3. Make it to the wine tasting
Because that's the most important thing after all. 

And here are two goals that I want to complete no matter what. 

4. Go slow and walk when I have to
During my last race I started out way too fast and burned out by the end. And that was less than 1/3 the distance of this one. So I need to swallow my pride, pace myself, go slow, and walk if I need to. 

5. Enjoy the view
I wanted to make this goal "enjoy the race" but I thought that might be too ambitious. But the course goes right along 5 miles of super beautiful California coast, so I figure I can at least enjoy the view.

(Image Source)

Q: Are you racing this weekend? Any tips to survive my first long-ish race?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Workout Wednesday Guest Post - Running the Boston Marathon

Happy Wednesday! Today's my first time hosting the Workout Wednesday (WOW) linkup, with fabulous co-hostesses Diatta Harris from Femme Fitale Fit Club, Sheila Simmons The Frugal Exerciser, and brand new co-hostesses Natalie from Clean Eating Teen, Jenn from Comeback Momma, and yours truly!

I've been focused on my first 10-mile race this Saturday, but I wanted to kick off my Workout Wednesday co-hosting duties with a very special guest post. My friend and former co-worker, Lauren, is preparing for a much bigger race this week, and is here to share her story.

"Hi! I am a former cubicle-mate of Amanda's who has kindly invited me to guest post about my experience training for the Boston Marathon on April 21st! Since we worked together in Washington, DC, Amanda and I have gone separate ways - her to lovely Santa Barbara, and me to Boston for graduate school.

I've been a casual runner for years, ever since a friend convinced me to do the Cherry Blossom 10-miler, but never ever considered a marathon, even after doing two half marathons in the past year. However, my university, Tufts, has a relationship with the Boston Athletic Association that reserves 100 bibs for students, faculty, staff, and alums, with a requirement that students raise $1,500 for nutrition and obesity research at Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. This is pretty cool, because the Boston Marathon is notoriously difficult to qualify for, and running as a charity entrant can require raising several thousand of dollars. So, with the encouragement of my sister, who ran the Marine Corps Marathon a few years ago, and peer pressure from some friends, I signed up.

So, in January, my training began in earnest as I contemplated running more miles (in training!) than I had ever run before. We are lucky to have an awesome coach for the team, and the camaraderie of having built in teammates. We also had several scheduled runs on the marathon course, and team runs twice a week. It makes it much easier to wake up for a 7 AM run in January when it's 5 degrees in January when you know that there's a whole group of people waiting for you!
There have definitely been challenges - the polar vortex, a stubborn IT-band problem, trying Gu for the first time - but overall it has been an incredible experience to realize I can run further than I ever thought. I can't believe the race is so soon, and I am sure it will be emotional given last year's bombings. I am looking forward to crossing that finish line!"
I'm so proud of Lauren and inspired by her decision to seize the opportunity to run the Boston Marathon in such an emotional year, even though it was something she'd planned on doing. I hope everyone will join me in wishing her luck on her first marathon!

If you want to follow Lauren's progress during the race, read these instructions to track her bib number, 30620. Lauren's a rock star and has exceeded her fundraising goal, but if you're interested in supporting nutrition and obesity research at Tufts you can donate here.

Now that we've had that dose of inspiration, let’s get on to the party!

Point & Purpose: The purpose of this link up party is to mix and mingle and support each other’s sites by visiting, subscribing and/or leaving a comment. Please do not drop a link here, disappear and not follow through by visiting other party goers’ sites. 

Theme: We are linking up blog posts, Google+ posts or Facebook posts related to FITNESS, RUNNING, HEALTH or WELLNESS.

Simple Rules:
1. Follow, Like and Subscribe to your hostesses and co-hostesses:

2. Don’t be a wallflower. Show some comment love and support to other party goers of this link up by visiting their blogs and either leave a comment on a post, subscribe or both! Visit at least 5 others who have joined the party.
3. Invite your like-minded friends! We love finding and reading new blogs so spread the word so we can increase the size of our parties every week.
4. Use hashtag #wowlinkup when you comment on someone’s post for easy identification.
5. Last but definitely not least, HAVE FUN! This IS a party.


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Monday, April 14, 2014

Meal Prep Monday - Banana Sweet Potato Pancake Bread and Sauteed Tempeh

I can't believe it's Monday already! This weekend was super short and kind of gloomy, but I did manage to get a PDR-setting 8 mile run on a grey Saturday. Not going to lie, it was kind of rough.  And then I finished my training for this week's 10-miler plus wine tasting by going to Brews at the Beach, which was also a little rough. But I do have some exciting news!

As you may have seen on Diatta of Femme Fitale Fit Club's blog, I'm joining Femme Fitale Fit Club, The Frugal Exerciser, and Clean Eating Teen as a new co-host for the Workout Wednesday (WOW) Linkup! I've really enjoyed participating every week and have found a lot of great new blogs to read. Please stop by and join in on Wednesday!

Now on to the meal prep.


I really wanted to make these high protein cottage cheese pancakes from Ambitious Kitchen, but I wasn't capable of standing up long enough to make a week's worth of pancakes on Sunday. So I decided to make it into a baked good, and changed the ingredients based on what I had in the house. Here;s what I ended up with:

Banana Sweet Potato Pancake Bread

Calories: 273 | Fat: 5 g | Cholest: 75 mg | Sodium: 639 mg | Carbs: 41 g | Fiber: 5 g | Sugars: 8 g | Protein: 18 g

2 cups old fashioned oats

1 cup multigrain pancake mix
2 egg whites
2 eggs
2 cups cottage cheese
2 very ripe banana, mashed
1 mashed sweet potato
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 cup almond milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix ingredients together until batter is mostly smooth.
Spread into a large, well greased baking dish.
Bake for 45 minutes or until the top begins to brown and the bread feels firm in the middle.
Makes 6 servings.

I think I like my Blueberry Pancake Bread better, but this is a nice change of pace. It's super dense and moist and not very sweet, and is low calorie enough to top with plenty of maple syrup or other sweet toppings.


I made tempeh again this week but changed up my cooking method. Instead of baking it, I crumbled the tempeh and sauteed it with a little coconut oil, amino acids, rice wine vinegar, and vegetable stock to get that ground beef texture and feel. It turned out pretty well and I think it'll make a great neutral protein for this week's meals.


I made a bunch of new veggies this week, including artichokes! I've never cooked artichokes before, so I just followed these instructions and roasted them whole in the oven. They're a little darker than the picture, so I think I over cooked them. They still tasted good, so I'm going to call it a win. I also cut up and roasted a kabocha squash, some turnips, and sweet potatoes, and boiled some fava beans.


This week is all about the Chardonnay 10 Miler, so besides my beach volleyball leagues I'm going to do a little running and a lot of rest, and then trying to survive 10 whole miles!

Q: How was your weekend? Do any running or tasting or any other exciting things? 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Friday Favs - Trader Joe's Finds Part II

It's Friday!! Super exciting but also super scary because it means I'm only eight days away from the Santa Barbara Chardonnay 10-Miler! That's right, with all your support/peer pressure I actually pulled the trigger and bought a race registration. And three wine tasting tickets. Don't worry, they're not all for me. Unless the race goes REALLY badly. Or really well :)

Even thought it's scary I'm really excited to be running this first race in my new town. I've mentioned before how much more having such beautiful scenery and weather has made me like running, and the course is supposed to be super pretty so I'm excited to use picture taking as an excuse to take breaks share lots of race pics with you.

Something else I've been growing to like since my move is having Trader Joe's as my main grocery store. It's kind of annoying sometimes because I have to make multiple trips to find things like aluminum foil, dried chickpeas or turnips. But on the upside it has given me the chance to try a lot of cool new Trader Joe's foods. 

I shared a few favorite Trader Joe's products back in September, but since I've been trying a lot of new things lately I'm joining in the DC Trifecta's Friday Five linkup with five favorite recent Trader Joe's finds.

1. Cruciferous Crunch Collection

As you can probably tell if you've seen my Instagram lately, I'm OBSESSED with this new salad mix from Trader Joe's. The mix of kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and green and red cabbage is so full of texture and makes for a great hearty salad or stir fry that keeps even me full.

2. Sparkling Mineral Water

I'm probably way late to the party, but I did not know that Trader Joe's sold delicious and cheap flavored mineral water. This is a great, healthy alternative to sugary sodas and it's my current non-water beverage of choice. The lemon and lime flavors are my favorite!

3. Organic Dark Chocolate

Trader Joe's has a lot of great chocolates but this is my current favorite. It's dark, rich, organic, and was only $1.99 a bar!

4. Dr. Praeger's California Veggie Burgers

I first saw these on this list of healthy veggie burgers made from ingredients you can recognize and looked for them the next time I was at Trader Joe's. I love that they are GMO free and made from mostly whole ingredients, and I love that you can taste the veggies. And they're pretty cheap for a veggie burger.

5. White Cheddar Corn Puffs

As you may have seen in my last WIAW post, these are my newest cheesy, salty, snacky obsession. I'm a huge fan of Pirate's Booty, but I may like these even more because this whole giant bag was only $1.99! Warning: extreme danger of eating the whole bag.

Q: Are you a Trader Joe's fan? Any favorite food finds lately?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday - Day in the Life

I can't believe it's Wednesday already! Beach volleyball rec league started this week, and signing up for both women's and coed doubles may have been a mistake. Two hours of beach volleyball doubles two days in a row is a little rough on the legs, and I had to skip my run yesterday. But it's kind of hard to complain when I get to see this after work.

But enough about working out, let's talk about eating! I've done What I Ate Wednesday/WIAW posts before, but I've never done a traditional day in the life post. So today I'm joining the What I Ate Wednesday and Workout Wednesday linkups to share everything I ate on a normal day (this Monday). Prepare to be amazed by the sheer volume. 

I almost always eat my breakfast in front of the computer at work. Who really has time to eat before they leave the house? This morning, I was at work by 7:30 so it was really nice to have a mason jar of blueberry banana barley ready to grab, heat and eat. 

Oh and I also had a big thermos of coffee with almond milk. I'm addicted.

I was getting really hungry by about 11, so I sliced up a gala apple and a wedge of garlic herb Laughing Cow light cheese. Not the most photogenic combo, but pretty tasty.

I usually have lunch late but I had a 1 pm meeting, so I ate around 12:30. I love that we have mixing bowls at work, because regular bowls just don't cut it for my giant salads. This one had Trader Joe's Power to the Greens mix, roasted cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and Avocado Greek Yogurt Tofu, tossed with a little bit of olive oil, apple cider vinegar and garlic salt.

I like to finish my meal with something sweet, so I also ate a yummy red pear.

I was hungry again at 2:30 and craving chocolate, so I made a piece of sprouted wheat toast with Nutella and a cup of tea.

With two rec league games right after work, I was really worried about running out of fuel, so I had a Kashi snack bar around 4:30. Sometimes I think worrying about being hungry in the future makes me eat more in the present. #firstworldproblems

I was starving and super tired after playing two hours of beach volleyball doubles (and winning!) so I started replacing the calories I burned as soon as possible. I made a recovery drink with coconut water for hydration and tart cherry juice for muscle recovery, and ate a bowl of Trader Joe's cheddar puffs for deliciousness. And carbs or something.

After taking the edge off my hunger and finishing an episode of House of Cards with my housemates, I finally had my real dinner. Another big tofu salad bowl, but this time I made it Mexican style with avocado, tomatoes, salsa, and shredded cheese.

I've been late-night eating a lot, but I must have managed to stuff my face enough that I wasn't too tempted, and I just drank a bunch of club soda with lime before passing out around 11:30.

Whew, that was a LOT of food. Pretty much the main reason I stay as active as I can is to eat piles and piles of food :)

Q: What did you eat yesterday? Any exciting new foods or impressively large quantities?