Tremendous Twelve

Hi Friends 🙂

Today is the last day to enter my giveaway – you have until 10pm CST tonight – winner will be announced tomorrow!

Jason is actually publishing this post for me – I am away at our Sister-in-Law’s house for the rest of the weekend. I know there is a way to set up an auto-publish in WordPress but I was short on time, so I showed Jason where the powerful Publish button is and asked him to do it for me.

Yesterday I ran 12 miles – and I was so nervous about how it would go. But it went great! I started off my morning with a good breakfast:

I think it is Denny’s or Perkins that has a breakfast called the Tremendous Twelve (2 eggs, 2 slices of toast, 2 slices of bacon, 2 sausages, 2 pancakes = 12!). Yes the only connection between the title of this post and the content of this post is the fact that the #12 appears in both. Moving on…

I chose to have a bagel with peanut butter and chia seeds on top and a sliced apple. This is my go-to breakfast before longer runs. It fills me up without weighing me down. I waited about 30 minutes and then I ran out the door!

Yes that means I ran outside – no more treadmill for the long runs. I just couldn’t bear the thought. And it was pretty nice out! At about 9am (when I started my run) it was maybe 25 degrees? But the sun was shining so I felt pretty good.

I was also bundled up with a jacket, long sleeve Under Armor shirt (love that shirt so much!), capris (from Target!), gloves and hat. I also had my fuel belt:

I keep tissues, chapstick and sport beans in the pouch, water in one bottle and Gatorade in the other. It took me a while to get used to having it on me, but now it doesn’t bother me at all. During my run I drank everything and the sport beans give me an extra boost when I need it. I love those!

I ran on some trails near our house – and I knew I was running 12 total miles because I entered it all into Map My Run before I left:

This is a great tool for me. I don’t have a Garmin or anything to keep track of the distance I am running, so I have to figure it out beforehand. Map My Run is easy to use and it is free! Plus you can search for mapped runs in your area — I have never used any of these though. I think there is a subscription service (where you can save runs, etc) but I don’t know if that is free or not. So I figured out how far I needed to run so that I was 6 miles away from home, then I turned around and came back.

12 miles took me about 2 hours, which is on track for how I have been running so far. I was just happy to be done! The hardest part was the last two miles – I knew how close I was to home and yet I still felt so far away!

I came home and iced my knees (just in case!), foam-rolled and then made myself some FOOD!

I made two over-easy eggs (my favorite), with a slice of toast. I also had a smoothie: 1 cup almond milk, ½ banana, 1 TBSP peanut butter, 1 TBSP chia seeds, 1 scoop whey protein powder, ice

Delicious! After showering I took a little snooze and I felt incredible for the rest of the day!

Have a great day!

~Holly

Pumpkin Butter Sweet Potato & Craigslist Success

Hi Friends 🙂

How was your weekend? I slept in yesterday morning and took it easy all day – no time for blogging. It does feel good to disconnect once in a while. I don’t know how some of you daily bloggers (or multiple posts per day bloggers) do it!

Another flower in my bouquet opened up:

These are just so beautiful. I’m glad Jason likes to buy me flowers once in a while. They sure do brighten up my kitchen. Here is where I blog by the way:

Excuse the stuff all over the counter. Yes that is a rubber mallet next to the vase. I don’t know why it is there! (And can you find my beaded orange bat???)

*

The biggest change for us over the weekend:

YES THAT IS MY CAR IN THE GARAGE!!! We had a couple come and pick up our old washer/dryer set on Saturday and as soon as they left I pulled my car into the garage. We bought my car back in June and Saturday was the first day I put it in the garage. In case you “forgot”, here is what our garage has looked like for months:

We used Craigslist to sell a lot of things: dining chairs, washer/dryer, dishes, glassware, computer parts, old cell phones, curtains, patio furniture, our old grill, old tires, etc. It was sometimes a hassle to set up times to meet with potential buyers, but it made us some money and you can’t beat that! Here are some of my Craigslist tips:

  1. Post pictures in your ad. People want to see what you are trying to sell, and no matter how many words you use, a picture is so much easier.
  2. Don’t post your phone number, name or address in the ad. Use landmarks to give buyers an idea of where you live: a nearby mall, museum, lake, etc.
  3. Be specific in your ad. If you only want to accept cash, say so. If your price is firm, say so. If you’ll take the best offer, say so.
  4. Try to meet buyers away from your home: at a coffee shop, mall, grocery store parking lot, etc. Bring someone with you and tell at least one person where you will be going to meet with a buyer. If the buyer has to come to your house (for example, Jason and I were not going to load up the washer and dryer to meet someone) – make sure someone else is home with you. Meet in your front yard or garage. Don’t let the buyer in your home unless you have to. This isn’t to make you paranoid or nervous about buyers, but you need to have some common sense to protect yourself and your belongings.

Any other tips I am forgetting? Have you had any success selling on Craigslist?

*

And as promised in the title:

Pumpkin Butter Sweet Potato:

Take in the glory:

A large sweet potato, baked, and topped with drizzled peanut butter and a big ole blob of Pumpkin Butter. It was like eating dessert for lunch 🙂

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And, this is my 100th post 🙂 Thanks everyone who reads, comments, links back to me, etc. I truly do appreciate it and I look forward to what the next 100 posts will bring!

*Any Craigslist success/horror stories to share?

*Any good news/fun stories from over the weekend?

*What is your favorite Holiday and why? What do you enjoy about it?

Winner Winner Beet Lunch

Good Morning!

First I’ll announce the winner of the Raw Crunch Bar giveaway!

And the winner is  The Empty Nut Jar! You left the 35th comment! Please email me at couchpotatoathlete@gmail.com with your name and address and I’ll get those Raw Crunch Bars shipped ASAP!

I got in a great workout last night, I did some FBB strength training and some TurboFire HIIT – I love when I feel my blood pumping!

Katie’s post really influenced my decision to do more strength/weight training. I love cardio, but I really want to be STRONG. Thanks Katie for the push in the right direction!

I made a really simple lunch today. My sister L made it for me when she was visiting last week. We picked out some lovely beets at the Farmers Market. I boiled them up, let them cool a bit and then peeled and sliced them. My hands didn’t get too pink from the beets:

I added some goat cheese and dressed the salad with this:

Who could not love Paul Newman dressing? Ok, who could not love anything with Paul Newman’s face on it? Then I sprinkled the salad with some walnuts, and ta da:

I’m going to add this to a bed of greens, but it looks so purty on its own!

Speaking of purty, check out what I got in the mail:

I’m pretty sure there will be a giveaway involved with this as well. Maybe Saturday?

I’m working on a series of posts about budgeting, specifically budgeting for food and meals. I’d like to use you all as research 🙂
1. About how much do you spend on food/restaurants each week? Is this just for you or for you + spouse/sig other/roommates/etc?
2. What dietary needs do you have? (example: we are a dairy free household)
3. Do you plan meals/snacks ahead of time or do you decide each day what to eat?
4. What is your favorite meal to make at home?

Have a great day!

Holly

Pancake Fail

Good Morning!

I spent all day yesterday cleaning up the house and getting ready for my sister, niece and nephew to come and stay with us. I did squeeze in some time for TurboFire 45, cooking and a little reading. 🙂

Plus we went to Best Buy and Home Depot to look at washers and dryers. We also looked at cameras – we are thinking of getting one for J’s mom for her birthday. She is taking a trip to Italy in October and we think she could use a better camera! J really liked this one: 🙂

I finished The Lovely Bones! To be honest it was a very depressing book. What I didn’t like was the description of Heaven – it sounded like a sad place. If you’ve read the book, do you agree? I wanted to finish it because I want to move onto a new book:

I’ve had it since Tuesday but I haven’t had a chance to open it up. The Lovely Bones was pretty depressing, so I am looking forward to reading a much more positive book.

Here are some of my favorite OB posts from last week:

Michelle

Angela

Tina

There were more, but these three stood out to me, in the best way possible. Thanks ladies for the great posts!

Today I used up some Farmers Market goodies while making lunch. I wanted to celebrate Pancake Sunday in honor of HEAB. 

I made Potato Pancakes.

I used a recipe that you can find *here*. But I didn’t fry them in oil, and I used oat flour instead of regular flour.

Here is the “batter”:

In the skillet:

 

And the final product, topped with eggs:

The verdict? They were ok. Once J and I dumped salt on top of these babies, they were ok, but they really lacked flavor. Next time I will add more seasoning, and I will make them thinner – the outside was nice and crunchy (like hashbrowns) but the inside was pretty soggy 😦

So I threw them out and we had some cinnamon toast instead. 🙂

So I’ve been totally putting my 10 mile training plan to the side and only using TurboFire. Why? Because TurboFire is fun and running just hasn’t been as much fun. This week I need to start focusing on running more, or that 10 mile is going to feel like a marathon.

You know what might help? Compression socks. 🙂

Good thing I won a pair from Shelby’s giveaway on Eat, Drink, Run! I hope to get a pink pair just like Shelby:

Thanks again Shelby!

Don’t forget that my OpenSky shop opens tomorrow – woohoo!

Questions:

Did you write an OB post? Tell me and I’ll go check it out!

What do you do when you lose motivation to workout?

Do you wear compression socks?

TGIF & OIAJ

” It’s Friday night, and the mood is right…Gonna have some fun, show you how it’s done, TGIF!”

I used to watch TGIF shows every Friday – anyone else? I’m trying to remember the lineup. I remember Family Matters:

(source)

Followed by Boy Meets World:

(source)

Followed by Step by Step:

(source)

And finally Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper

(source)

*edit: I remember the lineup changing frequently, with shows including Perfect Strangers, Full House and Dinosaurs (I think!)*

Oh this brings me back. Once Sabrina the Teenage Witch started, TGIF went downhill. What was your favorite show as a kid/teenager?

This morning I thought I’d try something different. I didn’t have a smoothie or a green monster this morning. WHAT IS THIS WORLD COMING TO? I decided to try OIAJ. I prepared some oatmeal, poured it in the basically empty PB jar and added ½ sliced banana and a sprinkle of walnuts.

It was delicious. I got a nice scrape of PB in every bite. Thank you Kath!

I’ve got an egg salad sandwich for lunch today, thanks to this little guy:

He did great! The egg and the potato peeler from yesterday are both from HomeGoods – they have all sorts of fun, cheap kitchen stuff.

And, finally, to keep my promise from yesterday:

MAYOR McCHEESE! He is so distinguished and fancy.

Friday plans:
Dinner: ???
TurboFire!
Keep reading The Lovely Bones (started it last night and am loving it so far – the author is wonderful)
Relax

Question of the day: What was your favorite TGIF show?
Have a great day,

Holly

Clouds & Cucumbers

Hi Readers!

I’m so glad so many of you have been to a Mongolian restaurant before, it is such delicious food! When we were walking out to the car we saw a huge wall cloud:

Check that thing out! A big storm was headed right for us:

I sent them into our local news station, but I forgot to watch the news, so I don’t know if they included out photo (they usually show pics taken by residents). It ended up storming hard for most of the evening, the sky turned yellow/green for a while, it was crazy!

I stayed up way too late last night, so drinking a GM this morning was just what I needed:

Nothing special, same as every other day: almond milk, spinach, 1/2 banana, whey protein, chia seeds, peanut butter

What is your favorite smoothie?

Lunch is almost the same as yesterday too! I know I eat basically the same thing every day, but this is just getting old!

Romaine w/chicken breast, blueberries and almonds, with an Ezekial tortilla and carrots.

J brought these beauties home yesterday:

Here they are with a Larabar so you can see how thick they are!

So, I’m thinking we need to include a cucumber in tonight’s dinner. How do you like to eat cucumbers? Do you have a favorite recipe?

Plans for tonight:

1. Grocery shop
2. Laundry (ugh)
3. Clean kitchen (ugh)
4. Dinner: chicken fajitas
5. Bake blueberry muffins (recipe will be posted later tonight!)
6. Top Chef!

Question of the day: Do you plan your night ahead of time or do you like to go with the flow? I “need” to plan, I love to make to-do lists and plan ahead.

Have a great day!

Holly

Christmas in July

Hey everybody!

I was so restless last night! I finally got my TurboFire workout in at 8:30pm – needless to say I was wired afterward and had a hard time getting to sleep. Then, my body woke up at 5am! I was planning on getting up at 5:30am to run with J, and I wanted/needed that half hour of sleep! At 5:30am the alarm went off and J and I got our running clothes on (I had set them out last night to save time) and hit the road.

We set out to run 3 miles, but it started to rain so we only ran 1.5. I’m ok with that. It is only the first week of our 10 mile training plan.

When we got home I whipped us up some green monsters:

I love the green and red together, it is like having Christmas in July!

Do you buy presents throughout the year (for Christmas, birthdays or other holidays)? Or do you wait until the last minute? Sometimes I buy gifts months ahead of time and then forget about them. But I usually wait until the last minute only because I seem to find good things when I am really looking!

Here’s lunch:

Romaine with chicken breast, almonds, blueberries and poppyseed dressing, with 2 big green pepper scoops on the side.

Tonight J and I are going out for dinner to Khan’s Mongolian Barbeque. They have the most delicious food. I’ll post about it when I get home tonight. We are going to say goodbye to my sister M and her husband T – they are moving to Texas on Thursday! M got a teaching job down there and they are so excited to move. I sure will miss them!

If you’ve checked out my Exercise DVD reviews, you know that I love Jillian Michaels. She is not perfect by any means, but I think as a whole she gives great fitness and health advice. I get email updates from her website and found the following article interesting.

“A Cheap and Easy Stress Reliever” explains how writing in a journal can be beneficial in relieving stress. I personally like to write/type out my problems and think about solutions, or how I could/should react to a specific situation/issue. Jillian gives some topics to write about if you are having trouble getting started:

  1. Your day.
  2. Your goals.
  3. Specific problems or worries
  4. Priorities and to-do lists. (lists help me tremendously!)
  5. What you’re thankful for (helps you to think more positively)

(source)

Question of the day: What do you think? Do you write in a journal? Does it help keep your thoughts organized? What do you do to relieve stress?

Have a great day!

Holly

Frozen Berry Cloud

Hi Readers!
 
What a lovely day! I finally got my workout schedule all figured out: Well, I have this week figured out!

Sun: Fire 45/Stretch 10
Mon: Fire 45 EZ
Tues: Run 2 miles (AM) HIIT 20, FBB Strength (PM)
Wednesday: OFF
Thursday: Run 2 miles (AM), HIIT 15, FBB Strength (PM)
Friday: OFF
Saturday: Run 2 miles, Core 20/Stretch 40

 

I decided on having 2 full rest days. If I decide to do anything extra on those days, great, but there is no pressure. I’m already nervous about following this schedule the second week of August – my sister/niece/nephew are coming up from OK to visit us. What do you do when you have company over? Do you still make time to work out? I know that week will be a challenge for me.
 
I forgot to post a pic of my lunch earlier today. Here is my grilled chicken salad with Poppyseed dressing:
 

 
Minestrone soup:

 

 
So delicious. What do you like to eat for lunch?
 
Dinner was the always delicious Tilapia, brown rice and green beans:

Yes this is the same pic from yesterday — I ate my dinner too quickly before I had the chance to take a pic, but you get the idea!

Best part of the day: dessert/post workout snack:

Mixed Berry Cloud

You will need:

 3/4 cup almond milk

 1 cup mixed berries

 a small pinch of each to thicken it up

Throw it all in a blender (or a magic bullet in my case):

And here’s what you get:

I didn’t blend it completely, that way there were chunks of berries still inside. It is a freezing cold fruit sorbet. Thanks Susan for the recipe — it is adapted from Hungry Girl.
 
Tonight the plans are cleaning up the house, getting some TurboFire in, and getting to bed early. I stayed up too late last night and I’ve been dragging all day as a result.
 
Question of the day: When do you go to bed at night? I try to get to bed before 10pm because it takes me a while to fall asleep.

The Missing Banana Truck

Hi Readers!

I am so happy to see that I am not the only one who goes to so many grocery stores on a weekly basis. (and I’m also glad to see that I’m not the only one who has had odd results from VOO – I should just stick with the original recipe!) Here is where I go for grocery supplies:

Cub Foods (regular grocery store): basic cooking things (sugar, salt, almond milk, eggs, some produce, snacks for J)

Trader Joes: more produce (sweet potatoes, bagged lettuce, etc), granola bars, vitamins, almond butter, peanut butter, jam, frozen meals (orange chicken, egg rolls, frozen veggies, frozen brown rice, frozen berries), soups, bread, clif bars, larabars, trail mix

Healthy Ways (local health food store): protein powder, larabars, chia seeds, chia meal, flaxseed

Target: paper products (toilet paper, paper towels, etc), trail mix packs (only Target has the certain brand I like!), bottled water

Our Target did get produce, but not much. I was a little disappointed when I got there – they had 1 aisle of produce: grapes, blueberries, raspberries, bagged lettuce/spinach and baby carrots. Eek. I didn’t even see bananas! Now, this was their first day with fresh groceries, so maybe the Banana Truck didn’t make it up to MN yet. I’m hopeful!

I’m still working on my training schedule, does anyone have any tips? The running plan is only 3 days per week of running, FBB strength plan is only 2 days per week and then I wanted to sprinkle in a few TurboFire workouts throughout the week.

What is your workout schedule like? Or do you like to go with the flow and decide each day?

Lunch was really good today, I had a bowl of this soup:

And a sandwich made with turkey, veggie cheese and green peppers on whole wheat.

Look how gooey the veggie cheese got!

Dinner was equally amazing. I made Paula Deen’s Baked Tilapia. You know what that means: BUTTER.

 Here is the tilapia before it went in the oven.

I also made brown rice and some steamed veggies.

Here’s my plate:

So good.

I have brownies in the oven.right.now. I made them for J to take to work – pray for me that I don’t eat them all as soon as they are done!

Question of the day: What is your favorite treat? I love brownies, cookies and ice cream. And pie. And cake. Ok I love them all but I’d have to pick brownies as my favorite. Especially when they are really gooey on the inside.

Have a great night!

Holly

Taco Friday

Hi Readers! I hope you’re having a great Friday!

I am really sore from my TurboFire Sculpt dvd that I did yesterday. It was only 30 minutes long and used a resistance band (which usually isn’t as effective for me versus hand weights), but holy moly my biceps and triceps are burning today. I love it!

Breakfast this morning was the usual GM:

Snack was mixed nuts and some strawberries, and here’s lunch:

Oh.my.gosh. These are the best steak tacos I have ever eaten. I have no idea where they come from. A co-worker of mine asked me a few weeks ago if I wanted tacos for lunch, I said yes, and then he left. He didn’t ask what kind I wanted, how many, nothing.

Fifteen minutes later, he emerges with a little bag for me and said the total was $3. I paid him and opened the bag and found the 2 most wonderful tacos ever. They come with lime wedges, greens (not sure what this is?), onions and sauce.

I have no idea about calorie content, fiber, fat, anything. I have no idea what the sauce is. I asked my co-worker and all I got back was a shrug. I asked a different co-worker (who also gets these tacos) and he told me that they are made by some woman who sells them from her house. You have to call and place an order and then go pick them up.

So I don’t know where these tacos are from, who made them or where to get them. All I know is that they are delicious and they are my way of celebrating Cookie Friday.

Tonight is date night so J and I are going to see Inception at the “really really nice movie theater” – I’ll take some pics so you can see what I mean. I need to get a TurboFire workout in after work and before we take off for dinner. Busy night!

Question of the Day: Do you celebrate Cookie Friday (or in a different form like Taco Friday)? Is there one meal/snack you really look forward to all day? I really look forward to my morning smoothie because I’m hungry in the morning!