About Me

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I am a former career girl and am now a stay-at-home-mom to 2 amazing little girls. Exercise and "dieting" have never been easy for me. But now more than ever, I am determined to adhere to a more active, healthy lifestyle. I am not dieting - just making smarter, more natural food choices. I want to set a great example for my girls. I starting running last year with the Couch-to-5K running program. I've lost over 35 pounds since last year and I want to lose 60 more. I completed my first race (a 5K) in October and I running a 10K by this summer. My long-term goal is ultimately to run a half-marathon in 2012. I've created this blog to put it all out there and most of all - to keep me honest. I include a tested recipe & inspiring workout song on each post. I am also hoping to inspire and be inspired by you! I would love for you to join me for this journey and become an official follower of this blog!

Monday, August 29, 2011

New Year's in September?

I'm starting to think in some ways I took the summer off.  It wasn't intentional. I won't go into the long list of excuses (if you've been following the blog you know some of them), but I basically maintained instead of lost - losing and gaining the same couple of pounds. 

I still want (and am going to) lose somewhere between 40-50 more pounds which means...

I really need to kick my butt into gear BIG TIME and soon. 

Why wait until January to make a big change? With the summer winding down, kids starting school again, colder weather coming, and the holidays creeping up, it's actually the perfect time to start something different/ramp up a goal.

I read most of this month's Health magazine this past weekend. It has lots of good info, but the part I liked the best was an article on page. 97 "One Month to a Wow Body". Now I don't like the title because we all know that it is false advertising, but I do like the content. It talks about setting a goal of completing a race (either a 5K,10K or half marathon) & also setting a goal to "reclaim your weight". Here is a link that includes some of the info, but the hard copy is better/easier to navigate through...so you may want to pick it September's issue, if it sounds like something that interests you...

We have company in town over labor day weekend, and I don't want to be overly strict then so I am reclaiming my New Year's as September 5th. I am already training for a race, so I have that box checked. But I need to be more strict about portions and overall food/drink choices. I am either going to do a magazine's meal plan for a few weeks, start counting points again, or try another recent meal plan I've heard about to ramp up weight loss (the 17 day diet). 

Again if you know me, I am against the fads/gimmicks and anything that promises immediate results but I just need something to jump start me back into portion control (and less cheese, wine and beer!). 

I'll report back soon with what I chose and how it's going. 

SONG THAT KEPT ME RUNNING THIS WEEK: Ready to Run - Dixie Chicks. I am not a big country fan, but to add this song to my playlist this week was a nice change of pace from my usual. This song makes me smile even while sweating profusely. 
RANDOM TIP OF THE WEEK: If you want a quick jumpstart, a lot of the monthly magazine's have weekly menu plans like Clean Eating, this month's Health (and sometimes Self) - these menu plans help take some of the guessing out of it in terms of portion control, variety etc. I really like Clean Eating's and Self's plans (when Self has them).
THIS WEEK'S RECIPE: Arugula, Watermelon & Feta Salad. This may sound like an odd combo but it is soooooo good. I've heard of people making this and then Gina posted her version and I had to try it. I love red onion so I added a bit more than hers has. The peppery arugula is completely offset by the sweetness of the watermelon and the tang of the feta and dressing. So good!

Arugula, Watermelon & Feta Salad
Serves 4
3 cups of chilled watermelon (seedless), cubed 
1/2 cup crumbled feta
8 oz arugula (washed and dried very well)
1/2 small red onion, sliced very thin (use a mandoline for best results, mine was only $18 and I use it all the time...) 
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt and fresh pepper

In a large bowl whisk vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Then toss with the remaining ingredients and serve.

Nutrition: 163 calories, 11 g fat, 11 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 4 g protein, 4 pp+

Friday, August 26, 2011

And the Winner is... Whole Wheat Zucchini Muffins...

It's late. I've written the standard weekly items (song, random tip and recipe) but haven't had a chance to write the weekly meat of the blog. BUT I don't want to hold it up getting this blog post out (as it might take another week if I do), so I'm sending it out as is. 

Hope you are well! I can't believe summer is almost over. I've been running at least 4x per week and have my eyes set on an upcoming race. I've been maintaining my weight (not gaining) but am looking forward to really ramping up my losing. Have a great weekend everyone!

PS - I did want to share with you my favorite running tank tops. They are comfortable while still being fitted. They are v-neck (which I also really like) and have fun sayings. I like to support the Run Like A Mother crew when I can. They have helped me in so many ways (mentally, advise wise etc.) You can check out the tanks here. I have both the hot pink and blue :). I'd love for them to make additional versions but we need to support them so they will consider it. 

SONG THAT KEPT ME RUNNING THIS WEEK: "Dirt Off Your Shoulder" Jay-Z.  Random fact: Coldplay played this song on their Viva La Vida tour over the speakers right before they started their concert. I've loved it even more since. And it's good to run to...
RANDOM TIP OF THE WEEK: I know I've said this before but eat your walnuts! Almonds always tend to get the good vibe but walnuts are proving to be a step up. Among their other amazing properties... they provide 2x the amount of antioxidants than other nuts. It's best to find them raw and unsalted (I get mine from Trader Joe's). I often toss a small amount in a salad. 
THIS WEEK'S RECIPE: Whole Wheat Zucchini Walnut Muffins. This is a recipe that is easy for your kids to help you with. My 3.5 year old made these with me and as a result I think she enjoyed eating them more. Zucchini is in season right now in my area - big time. And I keep getting loads of it in my CSA. I put it in spaghetti sauce that I make and freeze it and tonight I made a giant savory zucchini/angel hair pasta "cake". I am always looking for recipes to use zucchini in and these muffins were a hit all around...

Whole Wheat Zucchini Nut Muffins
1 1/2 cups shredded zucchini (about 1.5 large zucchini)

1 cup whole-wheat flour

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2/3 cup granulated sugar (I used evaporated organic sugar cane)
1/3 cup dark brown sugar (not packed)

1/2 cup fat-free liquid egg substitute

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

3 tbsp. light whipped butter or light buttery spread 

3 tbsp. crushed walnuts, divided

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
 (i use a small microplane grater, you can notice the difference! if you are using regular nutmeg make sure to only is 1/2 tsp)
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium bowl, combine both flours, sugar, dark brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
In a separate medium bowl, mix together the zucchini, egg substitute, applesauce, butter, and vanilla extract. Slowly add this mixture to the first bowl, and stir until thoroughly blended. Mix half the crushed walnuts (1 1/2 tbsp.) into the batter.

Line 9 cups of a 12-cup muffin pan with baking liners. Evenly distribute batter among the 9 cups. Top each cup with a sprinkling of the remaining 1 1/2 tbsp. crushed walnuts. Bake in the oven for 22 - 25 minutes, until a toothpick poked into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let cool and enjoy!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Edge of Glory

One way or another I promise I will start posting once a week. Thank you for those who gave me feedback saying you missed my posts! It's been a crazy summer with an overseas trip, moving out of one house, into another and then going on a previously scheduled local vacation (where I am now). 

With all the craziness: less cooking, more takeout, less running, more packing and unpacking.... I have been happy to be able to just maintain. I might be a handful of pounds less, but won't know for sure until I get back home to my tried and true wii fit scale. I'll let you know next post. 

Although I still have a long way to go, I am really happy with how far I've come. I appreciated that earlier today when I was shopping at a little boutique and I picked up a size and I just new it would fit me - in a real store! And it fit like a glove. And I also appreciated how far I've come when I miss running so much that I went out running in an area outside my element in-between 2 storms this morning. I am so thankful I have found something so active that I enjoy doing SO much. See you back here sooner than later!

PS- You don't want to miss this week's recipe. 

SONG THAT KEPT ME RUNNING THIS WEEK: "The Edge of Glory" Lady Gaga. This song really gets me pumped up when I feel like I want to stop running. I love it.
RANDOM TIP OF THE WEEK: Try a new vegetable this week. I recently tried kohlrabi as I got one in my weekly produce share from a farm that I purchased a CSA from. Kohlrabi is a cross between and cabbage, radish and apple I would say, most like a radish but less spicy. I just removed the stems sliced it thinly with my mandoline and sprinkled a little salt on it. I ate some as a side to my half turkey sandwich for lunch the other day... delish!!
THIS WEEK'S RECIPE: Leek & Sugar Snap Pea Risotto (so so so good. would be a great Meatless Monday recipe). I can't say enough about this recipe. It tastes so fresh and good. I LOVE leeks and the sugar snap peas really add to this dish too. 

Leek & Sugar Snap Pea Risotto

Yield 5 servings. Serving : 1 cup


  • 4 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 - 2 cups sliced leek (1/2-inch thick)
  • (Make sure to soak & wash leeks properly to get all the dirt and sand out!)
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrot
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 1/4 cup dry vermouth
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon real butter
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Bring broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan and reduce heat. Keep warm over low heat.
  • Cook peas in boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water.
  • Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add leek and carrot; sauté 5 minutes or until tender, stirring often. Add rice; cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in 1 cup broth; cook 5 minutes or until the liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring frequently. Stir in 1/2 cup broth, vermouth, salt, and oregano. Add remaining broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring frequently until each portion of broth is absorbed before adding the next (about 25 minutes). Add peas; cook 4 minutes. Stir in cheese and remaining ingredients.
  • Nutrition: 320 calories, 4 grams fat, 47 grams carb, 15 grams protein, 3 grams fiber, 7pp+