Thursday, March 26, 2009

Better than a fortune cookie

Lots of craziness yesterday, which led to no workout and dinner out -- two things I hate to do these days. So, at 9:00 pm JP and I found ourselves at an old favorite Chinese place.

They were kind enough to stay open for us and we enjoyed talking with our waitress. But then, the conversation turned into something more like a palm reading. (Or what I imagine a palm reading/fortune telling session to entail. Never done it.) A brief snippet of the convo:

She looked at JP and said, "You have good heart. I can see in your face." Then she went on to ask how many siblings he had - she knew there were many in his family. She went on to correctly guess (?) he was the youngest one. Wow! She was right.

"And, you engineer." Yes...

"You good man, but little patiences sometimes." Yes... "But, she is a good balance for you. She helps you figure things out." Yes... that was part of the craziness of the evening before dinner.

She told us we'd be married by next July and our first child would be a boy. First of three. At the time, I almost believed her since she was so spot on with everything else.

We left there very amused, a little freaked out and in general awe of everything she correctly stated about our individual personalities and our relationship. I do have to say, it was better than the dumb fortune in my fortune cookie after the meal! :)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Food Heaven

It feels good to be back to normal. The end of last week had me napping on the couch at any given chance. Whatever I had, it took a toll. But, I was back at it this weekend. Full Force.

JP went to Chicago so I had the weekend to myself. Saturday morning I got up bright and early for a refreshing run. It was a little slow, but felt good to be out again. Afterwards, I quickly got ready to meet some friends for a little morning adventure. It was my virgin trip to Eastern Market, an outdoor market in downtown Detroit. It was SO much fun! We loaded up on bulk candy (mmm... chewy sprees...), amazing cheeses and freshly baked bread. It really doesn't get much better than that. Or so we thought...

From there, we headed over to Mexican town to hit up this awesome bakery. You walk in, grab a tray and just start picking out all the pastries, cookies, bread, fresh tortillas that you want. The pastries are good, buy my weakness is the fresh tortillas. They are SO GOOD. We opted for an early lunch at one of the resturants and stuffed oursleves silly with fresh guacamole, tacos and hot salsa. Seriously, this is my food heaven. :)

We rushed home and my girlfriend and I left her husband at home and went to see "he's just not that into you." It was a cute movie and sure made us think about all the jerks we dated in the past. Why didn't we lose them earlier? :)

By the time we got out, it was 4 pm but felt like 10 pm! I had to go home and take a nap before my dinner plans. Headed back downtown to meet up with some college friends at a super swank Italian bistro. Homemade pasta, fabulous wine (my new favs seem to be from Argentina) and top-notch company. Seriously, day of food heaven!!!

Sunday I had to recover from the adventures I had the day before and I hit the gym. Hard. I don't overindulge like that often, but it was well worth it!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Spring time sinuses?

Last night, JP and I fully enjoyed the 60-degree weather. It was so nice outside. So, instead of staying cooped up in the gym, we played in the sunshine.

We did the first workout for JP's upcoming 5k. He's determined to run one, so we did a 90 second walk/2 minute run for 30 minutes. It's been a bit since he's worked out, but he did great. I ran a little bit more just to get in some running. Since it was still light outside, we hopped on our bikes and biked for nearly 30 minutes. It flew by and I realized how much of a workout we got in! Much better than being a gym rat. No weight training, but hope to get some in tonight.

Hope. Since I'm home sick today. Last night, all of a sudden, my throat got really sore. So sore, that it hurt to drink water. I went to bed and still felt out of it this morning. So, I called in sick and went back to bed. After waking up at 11:30 am, my throat felt so much better. Still a little sore, but nothing like it was. I think it might just be sinuses from the changing weather. Hope to go back to work tomorrow, but kinda enjoying some downtime today.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Sunshine and fresh air!

That about sums up my weekend. It was a BEAUTIFUL spring weekend here in Michigan and you could tell everyone had cabin fever and was ready to bust out into the sunshine. EVERYONE was outside -- walking, running, biking, playing. Everyone seemed to be in a good mood and smiled and waved as you went by. Love it!

Saturday morning I got up early and went for a glorious run outside. Couple that with breaking in new shoes and it couldn't be better. Went about 3 1/2 miles. This building up gradually is so hard, but I keep myself grounded by knowing that this is the way I need to do it if I'm going to prevent another set back. Grrr... :)

Sunday, JP and I got out the bikes for the first time and went for a ride. We opted for the bike path instead of the trails. We knew the ground was going to be wet and muddy, and since we're not hard core mt. bikers, it would be better for everyone if we stayed on the path. We explored some new areas and went about 8 miles around a nearby lake.

It was a really nice weekend and I think the vitamin D did me some good. Much better mood and just feel refreshed. Looking forward to a run outside (hopefully) tonight and some weight training.

Happy Monday!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Soild Week

This week was a pretty solid workout week for me. I feel great and I love that I'm feeling stronger!

Wednesday I ran 2 1/2 miles and some serious core work!

Mile 1: 8:45
Mile 2: 8:49
Mile 2 1/2: 4:54

Got a little slower, but my splits were still faster than I anticipated. I was pushing a tad, but not all out crazy. I guess I may as well get in some faster runs while I'm still pretty low in miles. As long as it feels okay, why not?

I did my core work on the bosou ball and holy crap, were my muscles screaming! Love that feeling!

Yesterday, I so didn't feel like going to the gym. I was in a crappy mood, the weather had gotten cold again and all I wanted to do was go home and take a nap. I forced myself to go, figuring the worst thing that could happen was I'd do a short workout. A bad workout is still a workout, right? Again, so glad I went because I had a seriously good workout. My plan was to do a nice easy 3-miler and some strength training.

Mile 1: 9:11
Mile 2: 8:54
Mile 3: 8:54

My consciously slow run was faster than I thought it was going to be. This is the pace I was doing when I was in much better shape. Again, it felt relaxed and comfortable so I'm not going to worry that I was going too fast. Hmmm... am I just a speed demon and didn't realize it? :)

My upper body workout rocked! I did some free weights and machines and my arms were MAXED out by the time I was done. Sweet!

Going to enjoy a rest day today and looking forward to some good runs this weekend. I hear it's suppose to be nice, so hopefully I can get some outside runs in! Happy Friday all!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Invirgorating Run

There is just something about a good run in the rain.

It was about 40-degrees yesterday, but a warm 40-degrees. There's something so different when spring is in the air. It was drizzling pretty steadily, but I had made up my mind to run outside. It was such an invigorating run!

As I turned around to head back home, the steady drizzle turned into a steady rain. It felt so refreshing, almost like I'd cast off some baggage and was starting fresh again. Ahh... that's a great feeling. One I haven't had in a long time, and one I desperately needed. Isn't it amazing how one simple run can change your perspective like that?

Went about 3 miles, although I really wanted to go further. I thought about it for a bit, but my common sense won over and I knew I should follow doctor's orders and only increase by 1/2 mile each run.

Today is a great day and I actually feel refreshed. Looking forward to another great run tonight and some weight training.

Hope you all have a great run today!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Looking: 11 Great Runners

Okay... this is totally out of my comfort zone. Anyone interested in doing the Bourbon Chase!?!?! It's a team of 12 running overnight through bourbon land. Sweet!

Monday, March 09, 2009

The List

All winter I was looking ahead to which races I would choose to fill up my racing calendar. Today, I started the "official" list. Non-runners just don't understand the excitement of it. Planning out training, picking new races and thinking about all the gear I get to buy. I'm getting excited just thinking about it. Today, I picked four races for my upcoming schedule.

April 4 - Martian Meter 5K: I've done the Martian Half, and since I'm coming back from an injury, the full was out of the question. It's a great local race, right in Dearborn, and who doesn't love a race with aliens lining the course?

May 17 - Race for Your Memories: Kensington Park is my "home course" so to speak. Training there every weekend, I know every little twist and turn of the path. Plus, this one is in honor of Grandma K, who is suffering from Alzheimer's.

June 13 – Flirt with Dirk 10K: I love any race that Running Fit puts on and this one has been on my “gotta run” list for years. Trail running makes me remember what running is all about. It’s tough. It give you that-in your face-there’s a reason not everyone does this-holy crap was that an awesome run-feeling.

October 18 – Detroit Free Press Marathon: Every marathon I run, I try to pick one I’ve never done before. I’ve done Detroit, but there’s just something about running at home. Besides the easier logistics (I’m all about sleeping in my own bed the night before), it’s awesome to see the city by foot. Plus, the crowds are huge and so many of my friends and family came to cheer me on last time. There are a few races in the running, but I’m leaning towards running the “D” again.

Diamonds are a girl's best friend

Okay, before you freak out, I did not get engaged this weekend. But, I was surrounded by beautiful, sparkly diamonds.

My recently married friend has been having loads of problems with her engagement ring and wedding band. The problem? She keeps losing diamonds. She has like 80 little ones in the bands (yes, I said 8-0) and the prongs are too small to keep them in place. After nearly a year of problems, it's out to be fixed on last time. So, in the event she needs to find a replacement ring, we went out to do some research this weekend. How fun!

I know squat about diamonds (isn't that JP's job?) but picked up a few tidbits at some of the stores. Mostly, I learned what a tough job it is to learn everything there is to know AND pick out a diamond AND figure out which setting to choose AND not loose your lifesavings. Geez... I have a whole new appreciation for what JP is going through! When I told him that, I got the snort/laugh that says, "Yeah. It's a pain. It's a good thing I love you." :)

The weather was super crappy this weekend - major downpours. Made me super lazy and I didnt' get to the gym all weekend. YIKES! Last night I gave myself a little pep talk about how I need to be more dedicated to my health and fitness. Plus, if I'm gonna do a marathon this fall, I need to make my foundation a lot stronger. So... gym bag is in the car and I need to figure out my game plan for the week.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Mmmm..... mmmmm...

TGIF!!!!!! Seriously, let me repeat that. TGIF!!!!! It's warm (temps to reach mid-50's today!) and spring is definitely in the air. Whoo hooo!!!

Yesterday I had my yearly girl check up, so working out was not going to happen afterwards. JP ended up having a doctor's appointment yesterday as well, so we both got home earlier than normal. It was nice to have some more time in the late afternoon/evening and we got lots of things checked off of the "to-do" list.

This year for Lent, JP gave up meat. I about fell off my chair when he told me what he had decided. He's a steak and potato guy to the core. I'm so proud of him - he's doing a great job. I told my mom this and, in true mom fashion, she emailed me some seafood recipes she found in Taste of Home to try. Last night, I tried the couscous paella. It's not quite paella (but, I have a friend from Spain who's going to give me her mom's recipe), but it was darn tasty and had a nice kick to it, which I loved. It turned out well and it's going to become a favorite of ours. It's super easy, but nice enough to serve to company.


Couscous Paella
TIME: Prep: 25 min. Cook: 20 min.

1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon canola oil
6 green onions, thinly sliced
2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) vegetable broth
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 pounds uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups uncooked couscous
2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons chopped almonds, toasted
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
Lemon wedges

Directions: In a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, saute red pepper and garlic in oil for 2 minutes. Add onions; cook 2 minutes longer or until red pepper is tender. Stir in broth and seasonings; bring to a boil. Add shrimp; cook for 2-3 minutes or just until shrimp turn pink. Return to a boil. Stir in the couscous, peas and butter. Remove from the heat; cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Sprinkle with almonds and parsley. Serve with lemon. Yield: 8 servings.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Out with the old, In with the new

Similar to how tired I am of winter, I'm getting tired of my blog layout. Yesterday, I tried to download a sweet template from BlogSkins, but can't quite figure it out. Perhaps that will be my weekend project. Anyway... this is a temporary fix to change it up a bit. We'll see how it works. :)

And, I joined Twenty Something Bloggers earlier this week. Hi to my new friends! I am a bit distrubed I'm only in my 20's for one more year, but we'll leave that crisis for another day!

Last night I had a decent workout. Not to tax my foot too much, I jumped on the elliptical for 45 minutes. I opted for no iPod and kinda got lost in my thoughts. There's too much going on up there and I decided I needed some time to pick through them a little bit. After that, I got in some weight training to make these legs stronger and more toned. I love squats... is that weird? It just makes me feel so powerful!

I'm also starting to get anxious about planning out my race calendar. There are just so many races I want to do!! More on that soon...

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

I kick-butt

Not that I'm proud or anything... :)

Last night was a major internal battle if I was going to workout or not. I SOOOOOO didn't want to do it. But, JP encouraged me to go and I knew deep down he was right. I'm so glad he pushed me to go. I ended up having a kick-butt workout and did another (and I'll use this term loosely) brick workout.

Run: 1 1/2 miles at 8:45 pace. Testing out my foot and it's responding well, thus far. Yay! It felt good. And, I sneeked a few looks at my reflection in the windows and my form looked perfect.

Bike: Jumped on the bike to spin for 20 minutes. My quads were not having it and I was even on pretty low resistance. But, I was doing it and pleased with how I was pushing myself.

Run: Did another 1/2 mile, just to get the transition in. Probably should have done the longer run afterwards, but didn't think about it until it was too late. It felt so odd, but wasn't quite as bad as I expected. The foot held up and it's fine today (although I opted for flats instead of heels... just in case.)

So, it's not totally impressive, but it's a big step for me. I wanted to lift, but my stomach was growling so loudly I'm sure everyone in the gym could hear it. Looking forward to another great workout tonight!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Sensory Overload

It was indeed a pretty good weekend.

Saturday I made breakfast and did a bunch of stuff around the house while my food settled so I could go to the gym. Just as I was about to walk out the door, I started to get a headache. Thinking it would subside once I started working out, I continued on my way. Yeah. It didn't go away. After about 5 minutes on the eliptical, I knew this wasn't going to go well. My head was POUNDING! I endured that for about 20 minutes before I called it quits. I did a quick ab/core workout and called it a day. I went home, showered, took some alleve and laid down for a couple hours.

By evening, I felt okay enough to meet up some friends for dinner. We went to a new Mexican place and we pretended we were on a sunny beach, sipping fruity drinks. The food here is great and they have an entire menu dedicated to tequilla. What's not to love about it????

Sunday, I got up and did a decent yoga workout. My head was still hurting a bit and I wasn't brave enough to try another grueling gym trip. Streteching and relaxing my muscles did wonders and I felt better all day.

We completely endulged our senses for the rest of the day. We went to a wine tasting fundraiser. YUM! Wines from around the world, cigars for the boys and some fabulous cheeses and other yummy apps. It was a swanky little place, and definitely one of those hidden gems. I'm sure we'll be back to enjoy again!

Afterwards, we went downtown Detroit to Mexican Town for dinner. We stuffed ourselves silly and then loaded up at a local Mexican bakery. Holy cow we ate a lot. But was it good!

Last night when I was headed to they gym, I realized I had forgotten some of my gear. Since it is FREAKING cold here, I just wasn't in the mood to go home, grab it and go back out. Excuses, I know, but that's just how it was going to go. Besides, I had job searching to do and could use those extra couple of hours. But, all of my stuff is in the car and I'm gonna have a kick-butt workout tonight!