What the cocktails taught me...

Today's quote:

"When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change."

I've been working hard to eat healthy and exercise to lose weight, but this morning I thought of it a little differently. I went out to celebrate my friend Debbie's 6th, 25th birthday (you do the math, she refuses to age). 
Me & debbie

I drank. a lot. And ate too much gorgonzola garlic bread, all while having a fabulous time with my girlfriends. However, when I woke up this morning, I felt like death. And an 8 mile run planned, crap.

Instead of looking at this healthy lifestyle as just a way to lose weight, I was reminded of how good I feel when I actually fill my body with good things. I very easily could of capped myself off at 2 cocktails, but I didn't. I prepared myself very poorly for my long run, which resulted in stomach issues the last 5 miles.

Food is fuel, and I need to remember that. Its not that I can't indulge every now and then, but I need to do it lightly, not all out.

The run?
I was solo, Shelley was on vacation, and it was the last long run before RnR Providence. I decided to split it up into 2, 4 milers so I could stop back at the house to refill water and cool down since it was gonna be HOT out. I finally was feeling better by 9am, and headed out the door. My planned pace was 11:15, and typically on our long runs we never come near the pace goal. Today I wanted to kick the pace goal's ass.

mile 1 10:33
mile 2 10:57
mile 3 11:10
mile 4 11:08
mile 5 11:16
mile 6 11:25
mile 7 10:59
mile 8 10:42

Thats right, my first and last mile were faster than my planned half marathon pace. I am soooo ready to take on Providence next weekend!

Had a massage today with a different therapist, but she was GREAT! She went to town on my IT bands,  hamstrings, calfs, and quads. I almost cried, but it was so great I booked another one with her the thursday after Providence.

My goal for the rest of today is boring household chores and blog reading catch up.
How was your weekend?

Don't forget to enter my Joy Bauer cookbook giveaway HERE
Ask Me anything! HERE

Q & A Tag.... Ask me Anything!!


I've been tagged by Elizabeth @ Running for Bling!

So ask any question & I'll answer!
I'm excited to hear what you all want to know.

Now I get to tag 5 people to play...
1. Penny @ Pink Hat Runner
5. Erin @ See Mom Run Far

Amazing Blogger Award!

Kristin @ Running to Somewhere awarded me with a fabulous award!

so here's the info...

almost got a tattoo of this in college! haha

In fact, I now have a burning desire to run the Tinkerbell Half Marathon. Not this year, but sometime in the future.


Me & Kevin on our many adventures!
climbing temples in Mexico

[Favorite Thing to Cook]

Sweet Potato Fries!!

Cinnamon-Sugar Sweet Potato Fries
I LOVE sweet potato fries. Did you catch my recipe from Joy Bauer & enter my giveaway? Check it out HERE.

[Favorite Way to Exercise]


Especially races with friends! Closely followed by cycling and triathlon.

[Favorite Movie]


[Favorite Article of Clothing]

Urbane Scrub Bottoms

Seriously I LIVE in these things. Tons of colors, super comfy. Its like wearing pajamas to work every day. And makes getting dressed much easier. One of the perks of working at a hospital.

[Favorite Flower]

Stargazer Lily

[Favorite Breakfast]

I wish I had a photo of last saturday's breakfast. My organic eggs, red poatoes, and turkey bacon. None prepared by me (no dishes!)

[Favorite Book]

[Favorite Place to Be]

The Beach!

This is a picture from my vacation to Mexico last year (recap and Pics HERE). Relaxing on a beach is my most favorite thing in the world. I am counting the days (25 to be exact), until my amazing vacation to Puerto Rico & the Southern Caribbean.

[Favorite Sporting Event] 

RED SOX! (of course!)

Now my turn to nominate!

Want to run with Dean Karnazes??

Today I leaned something exciting...

YOU could run with Dean Karnazes at the GORE TEX TransRockies Run!

In fact Beth aka SUAR ran it last year. Check out SUAR's race recap here!

The Gore Tex TransRockies Run is a six day race starting in Buena Vista, Colorado and ending in Beaver Creek.

The race is completed in teams of two who cross the finish line daily. 
 During the six days, the runners cover roughly 110-120 miles of trail, depending on exact final routing, including everything from sun-baked high desert to rock-strewn mountain passes trails, cold creek crossings and alpine meadows.

To learn more about being chosen to run with Dean Karnazes at the TransRockies Run August 21-26, check out the GORE-TEX site HERE! Race fees, sleeping bags and meals included. Are you brave enough?
Oh ya, I'll be sipping mojitos in the caribbean, so good luck to you!

Joy Bauer Cookbook Review & GIveaway!

A little while ago, the folks at Joy Bauer asked me to review a couple of Joy's books. The first is...
Did you notice the Sangria picture in the upper left? This is my kind of book!!

Do you know Joy? She is the nutritionist of the Today Show, PARADE, New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and works as an adjunct faculty member at Columbia University. She has several NewYork Times bestsellers such as: Your Inner Skinny: Four Steps to Thin ForeverJoy Bauer's Food Cures: Eat Right to Get Healthier, Look Younger, and Add Years to Your LifeJoy's LIFE Diet: Four Steps to Thin ForeverThe 90/10 Weight-Loss Plan: A Scientifically Designed Balance of Healthy Foods and Fun Foods. Joy believes it's never too late or too early to reap the benefits of healthy living, which means a lot to me. I've been striving so hard to make my nutrition a part of my healthy lifestyle and was excited to learn all I could from Joy to make that happen!

When the cookbook came in, I couldn't wait to dig in. When I get a new cookbook, I like to tag all the pages of recipes I plan on making. A lot of times I only tag a few here or there, but in this book, there was only a few I didn't tag.
Look at all those tabs!
The first thing I decided to make was Crispy Parmesan Chicken with a side of Cinnamon-Sugar Sweet Potato Fries.

Crispy Parmesan Chicken
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1/4 cup nonfat or low-fat buttermilk (shake well before measuring)
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
3 egg whites
1 TBSP skim milk
2 tsp hot sauce
3/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup ground flaxseed

1. Butterfly the chicken breasts: Holding your knife parallel to the cutting board, carefully slice into each breast horizontally, taking care not to slice all the way through the meat. Fold each chicken breast open like a book so it lies flat.

2. Place the chicken breasts in a resealable plastic bag. Add the buttermilk to the bag and seal it. Squish the contents around to ensure all of the chicken is coated with buttermilk. Marinate for at least 30 min, or up to 24 hours.

3. Preheat the oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and coat the foil with oil spray.

4. Set out 3 shallow dishes for a 3 step breading station.

5. In the first dish, combine the flour, onion powder, salt, and black pepper. mix well.

6. In the second dish, combine the egg whites, milk, and hot sauce. Whisk together until slightly frothy.

7. In the third dish, combine the parmesan cheese and flaxseed, mix well.

8. Shake the excess buttermilk off one of the chicken breasts, and press it into the first dish (seasoned flour), coating both sides. Shake off the excess flour, then dip into the second dish (egg whites), coating both sides. Finally lay the chicken in the third dish, coating both sides with the cheese-flaxseed mixture. Place the coated chicken breast on the prepared baking sheet, and repeat with the remaining chicken breasts.

9. Mist the top of each chicken breast with oil spray.

10. Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until browned and crispy.

Cinnamon-Sugar Sweet Potato Fries
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled
1/4 cup whole wheat or oat flour
2 TBSP ground flaxseed
2 TBSP packed brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
2 egg whites

1. Preheat the oven to 425. Liberally coat a large baking sheet with oil spray.

2. Cut the sweet potatoes lengthwise into 1/2 inch thick slices, then cut each slice into 1/2 inch wide strips to form fries.

3. Combine flour, flaxseed, cinnamon, and salt into a 1-gallon resealable plastic bag. Crumble the ingredients together with your fingertips until they are evenly dispersed.

4. Place the egg whites in a shallow dish and whisk until frothy.

5. Dip the fries in the egg whites, then tap them on the edge of the dish to drain away any excess egg white.

6. Add all the fries from the bag and arrange them in a single layer, evenly spaced apart, on the prepared baking sheet. Mist the fries with oil spray.

7. Bake for 15 minutes. Then turn the fries over and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until crispy and browned. Let fries cool slightly before serving to allow the coating to harden.

In the end you have a yummy (and healthy) dinner!
Crispy Parmesan chicken and cinnamon-sugar sweet potato fries

I couldn't wait to try some more...

I made Summery Pesto Pasta

With fresh basil and Zucchini from my garden, delish!

I also tried the Banana Pecan Bread (which was a hit with my coworkers), and the Sesame Chicken Tenders (Kevin LOVED the sauce), and the Mediterranean Meatloaf. Next on my list to try is Double Chocolate Pancakes with Strawberry Sauce, Sicilian Quinoa Salad, and Joy's turkey meatballs.

The book covers a wide variety of flavors to appeal to many different people and incorporates lots of fresh, healthy food which I love. She keeps it fast, easy, and priced within your budget. I don't like complicated recipes with difficult to understand steps, and Joy keeps is simple and easy to follow. There are pictures for each recipe to give a beautiful overview of the dish.

I am sooooo glad I got the opportunity to check this book out, because I know many of these recipes will become regulars in my kitchen! Check it out on Amazon here: Slim and Scrumptious: More Than 75 Delicious, Healthy Meals Your Family Will Love, or get ready to win!

Joy's team has generously offered 2 copies of the book to giveaway, so we will have 2 winners!

How to Win
please leave a separate comment for each entry
1. Mandatory - Be or become a follower of my blog
2. Check out Joy's website HERE & tell me what you learned about her!
3. Like Running to Health on facebook HERE
4. Do you have a favorite cookbook? Tell me what it is!
5. Share this! Blog, tweet, or facebook (1 for each)

Get ready to enjoy some delicious, healthy food!
Enter by 8/3, remember there will be 2 winners.
Good Luck!

Its freakin HOT here!!

This week has been crazy with the heat & humidity.

Wednesday night it was 90 out, but a coworker and I decided to go for a ride on a bike trail she heard of in Southwick. Lucky for us, it was shaded and flat and felt much cooler than it really was. We did 14 miles, then called it a night.

Thursday morning I had bootcamp and sweated more than I ever have. TRX, Battle Ropes, Rip trainers, slam balls, it was an intense circuit. 

Friday morning, I figured the heat wouldn't be too bad to run outside at 5:30am. WOW was I wrong. 83 degrees with an insane humidity. 5 miles was the plan, and I went through 3 waterbottles on my belt, and ran through every single sprinkler I saw. My plan was for a 10:45 pace, but that went out the window with the heat. Stepping into my air conditioned house was like heaven after that run.

Saturday morning, Kevin and I got up for a long ride. Lucky for us, the clouds were out. So even though it was almost 90, the sun wasn't beating down on us as hard as it could have. We went 24 miles, got a little lost since I didn't know the route as well as I was hoping I did, but we managed to make it home, then out for a delicious (organic!) breakfast. The rest of the afternoon was spent baking in the sun and cooling off in the pool at my friend's little girl's birthday party.

This morning, Shelley and I had our last long run before tapering for RnR Providence. We started a little before 8, hoping to beat the later in the day heat. It was 82 at the start, and wicked humid. My goal for this run, was to push the pace a little. We've been fading the pace part way into the run, so I tried to keep an eye on the Garmin and push it a little. Mission accomplished.

Goal pace was 11:15, PHMP + 20 seconds. We have NEVER come close to that pace with our training runs, but this time, we came pretty close. Some miles were not as pretty, with big hills,  or stops at traffic lights. Around 9.5, we stopped at Shelley's mom's for more water, then worked on picking it up to finish. On our last killer hill, there was a girl out ahead of us and we made it our goal to pass her. We did on the hill. She passed us back after the top, then we passed her again later. We sprinted like mad to the finish with a crazy fast pace. Even our average pace was awesome, pretty close to our goal. It sprinkled a little through the run and more at the finish, which was fabulous.

My post run Panera tasted especially delicious today.

What have you done in this killer heat??

Need some Inspiration?


The will & drive to change.

We all desire it. long for it. And cling to it once it's ours.

We can find inspiration in many places. In ourselves, in our friends & family, on television, blogs, and magazines, and from life experiences we endure. It was something I had been lacking for awhile. I struggled, without the drive to succeed at training, weight loss, and nutrition. Luckily I have gained it through my Bia Fitness Bootcamp, my long run parter Shelley, and weight watchers at work. I have started to be successful in losing weight (2.6 down today!), and am noticing a change in my body (my too small skirt now fits!), and those results inspire me to continue to change. 

Now I need a way to keep that motivation and inspiration high! I found an article in SELF, by Jillian Michaels on gaining and keeping inspiration and thought I would share a few for you. (from the Feb 2011 issue)

Put Your Goals in Writing
"If you know the why, you can tolerate any how. Keep the list in a place where you can see it daily, such as on the bathroom mirror or fridge."
I have my goals mapped out, but I do need to post them someplace more visible

Zip It
"Stop the negative self-talk. No more chatter about perceived body flaws or how you lack the strength and ability to be fit. Self-depreciation serves absolutely no purpose except to make you feel bad. So stop it. Now. Instead, say something nice and complimentary about who you are and what you can do."
With my body shaping up, its been easier to say nice things! Definitely an area for me to work on though!

Have a Healthy Hero
"Pick someone in your life you admire- not necessarily  someone who runs marathons or eats super healthfully. Whenever you're doing something outside your comfort zone or you feel yourself losing steam, visualize this person at your side, telling you how much he or she believes in you."
I need to think about this one some more. Who do I look up to?

Embrace a "bad" day
"You're not going to have success at every turn, and that's OK. Many people are afraid of failing,a nd they let that fear stop them from trying in the first place. Understand that messing up is an integral part of success. It's an entry point that allows us to grow."
I have gotten MILES better with this one. I was afraid to do a triathlon, but I didn't let a fear of not finishing keep me from it. I sometimes can't believe I signed up for a Marathon because the mileage is so great, but I know that I may have good runs & bad runs, and I won't let them hold me back.

Could one of these help your inspiration?
What are your tips to stay motivated and inspired?

Right now, my tired eyes are inspiring me to get some rest before my speedwork run tomorrow! Good night!

Weekend recap!

I am crossing my fingers...

Because I think tomorrow will be a GREAT weigh in. I have Joy Bauer's Banana Pecan Bread in the oven to bring to work tomorrow, yum.

This weekend, with Kevin on mancation, I did a lot of cleaning & relaxing. I spent saturday at work, then my mom's pool, and sunday I had my long run. I tested out my possible race outfit for Providence...
What do you think?
You may notice, this is the skirt I almost wore for Disney, but it was a little too small. I am happy to say that with all my hard work, it now fits!!

The run felt good, almost easy. I felt like I could have pushed the pace, but Shelley was really sore, so we kept it casual & chatted the whole time. 

I can't believe I can run 10 miles and not even feel sore anymore! I think that means I need to push the pace a little harder. I am going slower than the Run Less Run Faster program is calling for, but Shelley and I just usually stick with what feels comfortable.

I've decided to not do this weekend's triathlon. I need to swim more, save some money, and run my last long run with Shelley. I promise to start swimming more to be ready for September's triathlons!!

Back to Bachelorette!

Let the Race Planning Begin

I have not been great the rest of this week.

Wednesday night I skipped my group ride, I was wicked tired! This morning I could barely drag my but out of bed at 6:30am, never mind the initial 4:45am setting I had it on for my morning run. I dragged through the day, hoping I would have enough energy for a run after work, but no way. I am beat. This bootcamp thing sure wears me out. Wears me out so much that I can't seem to get my key workout #2 in at all. No good!

I am working hard at picking my fall Half Marathon lineup. In fact, I signed up for my first of the 4 last night...

The Diva Half Marathon on Long Island on Oct 2!
Shelley and I are going to have a girls race weekend together.

My other definite is the Hartford Half Marathon on Oct 15 (only 30 min from home!)

Other possibilities?
Seacoast Half in NH Nov 13
Monson, MA Half Marathon Nov 13 (literally 15 min from my house, but hard & hilly)
Manchester, NH Half Nov 6
RaceVermont.com Half in Shelburne, VT Nov 6 (Near Kevin's hometown)

I need to pick 2 more from last list. As of right now, I am leaning toward Monson & Shelburne. 
Any input?
I've also been thinking that 9 half in 365 days in 9 states = 4 moon status. After these 4, I'd be at 7... do I dare?

My other dilemma is next weekend's triathlon.

I have not been open water swimming since the triathlon on June 26. 
Actually, I have not been swimming at all. 
The swim is .5 miles
I have never swam .5 miles
I want to make use of my USAT license
I would also like to save money for all the race fees listed above
I can race either for $85 at the Danskin in Webster, MA or for $95 at the Amica 19.7 in New London, CT
Next weekend is my last long run with Shelley before taper for Providence RnR
I have 2 more triathlon opportunities for the season on Sept 10 & 26

What would you do?

In marathon news, I found the FIRST Marathon training program online HERE, and am excited about training for Disney. The 16 week program, has us starting September 26! It looks like all the fall Half Marathons fall nicely in the plan and would actually add on some extra miles to the training. I really feel like after our 16 miler last weekend, I can accomplish anything. NEVER in a MILLION years when I started running did I think I could run that far. With the longest training run on our schedule at 20 miles, I feel like it is totally doable. I cannot WAIT to run Disney!

My weekend will be quiet, and I'm hoping to be able to rest and get some of that energy back to really focus on my runs in the final weeks leading to Providence. Tonight Kevin and I are having a low key night, and then he will be away on mancation until tuesday. I have to work tomorrow, but I plan on spending the rest of my weekend biking, running, shopping and relaxing by the pool.

Enjoy your weekend!

My Epic Run....

Yay new followers! Welcome!

My weekend was Epic.

I did a 16 mile long run.
After Run Sweaty Shot, bad self portrait!
yes, that is correct.  On Sunday I mapped us a 15 mile route, but after another miscalculation in Forest Park, a missed re-start on the Garmin, we finally finished at 16.15 miles in 3:23, exhausted and ready for Panera. I absolutely could not believe that I had run that far, but I had barely a minute to let it sink in, since I only had 30 min to shower & get ready to head to Boston for the Red Sox game!

Asiago Cheese Bagel Breakfast Sandwich
After a quick shower, I grabbed my makeup and food to go & jumped in the car for the ride to Boston. Thankfully Kevin was driving, so I had time to twist, turn & stretch, and most important, EAT!! The game was fabulous, we had amazing cup holders to hold our beer, which is a first for me at Fenway! I have always wanted to sit in a seat with a cupholder for my booze.
Amazing & convenient!

We had a bunch of home runs, a little back and forth with the score, and my favorite pitcher Papelbon closed the game for a win.

After a slightly disatrious dinner (WTF Irish Nachos?), we headed home!

The rest of the weekend was busy too. Friday we cooked dinner in & watched the game on TV, and saturday night we went to Hartford to enjoy the Riverwalk festivities and fireworks with some friends. This has left me little time for blog reading, so I am far behind! I hope to be able to catch up tomorrow after my group ride. YES, I am planning on riding with the group again tomorrow!

Weigh in today = -.6 . Again, disappointed. Usually my scale & WI scale are the same, but today a 2 pound difference, I think maybe because I was so busy all morning I had no time to drink my water. At least I am moving in the right direction. I had another killer bootcamp workout this morning & did some RevAbs tonight. Speedwork in the morning, wish me luck at keeping focused!