Similar but Different

This weekend was similar to most other weekends, but also different. I did the usual chores...go to the dump, do laundry, grocery shop, meal prep. Blah, blah, blah. They're necessary chores but not the most fun. So what was different?

 

I moved my body in enjoyable ways. I went for a 4 mile run on Saturday. It was an out and back to a cranberry bog where I decided to stop and do some squats and lunges. I still can't move after that. Then on Sunday I wanted to shake out my legs so I decided I'd try to run three miles. At the 1.5 mile mark I walked about another 0.5 miles before turning back. I was caught up thinking and listening to music and just wanted to be outside. It felt great to be outside just being. Rather than feeling like I should workout or I had to force myself to fit in some movement.

I bought enough food to cook THREE different meals. I think I've been overindulging (aka drinking lots of wine and eating more desserts) because my meals are unsatisfying. Yes they're delicious at first, but by the fourth or even third night I'm over it. Food is more than just fuel for your body. If a meal doesn't satisfy you you're likely to keep eating until you find that satisfaction. Therefore, this week I meal planned for three different meals: sushi, mushroom turkey burgers, and BBQ chicken with sweet potato wedges. I made the sushi last night. Mom and I still enjoyed wine and a bite of a donut, but I felt satisfied that I didn't need the whole donut.

I journaled. This is an activity I need to do more of. I've been motivated by reading Body Kindness. I find myself pausing throughout the day and looking for the bright side of things. One thing I struggle with are my emotions. For people who know me, you know I feel deeply and cry often. And lately it's been a constant lonely and tired. And yes sometimes my emotions, even boredom, causes me to eat. One of the best lines, in my opinion, from Body Kindness was that just because I'm feeling a certain way doesn't mean that I need to respond to it. I can feel the emotion and realize that all emotions, even good ones, pass.

So where did these changes come from? What else was different? Well, Saturday morning I was curious and stepped on the scale. And even though I haven't seen that number in quite some time and normally I'd be upset, I wasn't. A number means nothing to me. How I feel is what matters, both physically and emotionally. I know I don't feel the best and that I'm in limbo right now. So I'm okay with gentle movement and slowly working towards habits that will make me feel better.

References:

Scritchfield, R. Body Kindness. Workman Publishing Company, 2016.

The Golden Weekend

I was once told that in the healthcare industry having the entire weekend off is called a Golden Weekend. This weekend has only just begun but I can already tell you that I love weekends off, although I do spend a lot more. I have been looking forward to this weekend for a few weeks now, ever since I found out about Boyden Valley's Maple Fest. It was like Christmas this morning because I was so excited. I got dressed to go for a quick run and walked outside and came right back in...nope not a good morning to run outside. There is a thick layer of slush on the ground which had become pretty icy too.

Molly and I met up around 11:30am and started the drive to Cambridge. Once we got to the winery all of the great memories came flooding back. We ran into Colleen right when we got there! I love running into people I know at great events that support locally owned businesses. Molly and I started our day with some BBQ from the Smokin' Butts BBQ food truck.  I got the pulled pork sandwich and added some maple and spicy maple BBQ sauce. It was so delicious! It also came with a coupon for 1/2 off a cider of your choice. Molly and I both went with the honey cider. I tried the bourbon barrel aged cider last year and loved that one as well.

After sitting down for lunch in the upstairs dining "hall" with its beautiful wooden beams, we headed over to the free maple tasting. We tried the maple creme liquor, the apple creme liquor, the maple reserve wine, a maple dessert wine, and their bourbon barrel aged maple syrup. I loved their maple syrup. It's so so so flavorful and a great thick consistency.

Next up we did the cocktail tasting. We had the pleasure of trying four different cocktails. A maple martini, a manhattan, a moscow mule, and a coffee flavored cocktail. The moscow mule was my absolute favorite. I love anything with ginger.

We then split a wine tasting. Molly tried quite a few that she had been wanting to try and I tasted the blueberry again (I love blueberries), a black currant dessert wine, and a black currant based cider. The wine tasting came with a maple cupcake which Molly and I split. It was so rich in maple flavor, which was fantastic. We then ate some pretzels that I had brought rather than buying some sides from the BBQ food truck (i.e. maple carrots and cornbread).

Once we got home I headed to the gym to run 5 miles while watching Grey's Anatomy. Mentally this was challenging, but my legs felt great. I ended the night watching The Finest Hours which was filmed in the town next to mine and was so fun to recognize places!

________

Sunday I woke up at the ripe hour of 5:45 to fuel for my long run with Rebecca. Two slices of PB&J toast later and I was on the road for my run! It was a gorgeous morning and although it started out cold, there was no wind and lots of sunshine! I love these runs with Rebecca! I had negative splits almost the whole time too so that made me happy (stay tuned for a recap).

17 miles later and I ended at Switchback where I quickly ate a banana, chugged some chocolate milk and changed into yoga clothes. The brewery was a very chilly (although I was also sweaty), but the yoga class was great! It's exciting when you find an instructor who you really like and would love to continue to go back to. Marta (my neighbor) and I loved the class. At the end we enjoyed a flight of Switchback beers and I tried their new smokey beer which was great in addition to their IPA, brown ale and another ale. I decided to try the three seasonal beers because they aren't always there and the IPA I just really enjoy.

By then Marta and I were getting hungry so we went home to change before walking downtown. We tried Penny Cluse because breakfast food is always a good idea, but there was a long wait so we ended up at American Flatbread. I ordered a Conehead to start and Marta got a Bloody Mary. For our pizza we did half of the maple fennel sausage (hello, it's maple weekend) and half eggs benedict. Let me just tell you that their brunch breads are amazing. It was great to finally have time to hang out and catch up with Marta.

A few full days left me ready for a nap and I happily obliged. Now it's time for me to snuggle up and do some homework before going to bed (probably around 8:30pm...)

I also need to find some recipes that include maple syrup. Let me know if you know of any!

A Weekend with Mom and Dad

Mom and Dad finally came to Vermont and it was the coldest weekend in a long time. Saturday there was actually a wind chill advisory because of temperatures reaching -25 degrees. It was rough. I woke up and lounged around, did some homework, and watched TV while semi-napping. Around 12:30pm my parents texted me to meet them outside that we could go get some lunch. I took them to August First, a bakery that I went to a few years back with my sister. It's a cool atmosphere and the food was very good. Mom and I got the same meal of a cup of sweet potato and spicy sausage soup with a half panini. The panini was huge and I got the special of turkey, pesto, and mushrooms. Dad got the whole panini and seemed to enjoy it.

After lunch we ventured to a maple syrup shack, but unfortunately it was too cold for any sugaring to be happening. We did, however, get a taste of some delicious dark amber syrup before ordering a frosted maple donut and one bowl of sugar on snow to share. I also got a quart of dark amber syrup to go and I can't wait for future brinners (I am thinking french toast needs to happen soon).

It was too cold to do anything outside so we went to Pine Street to hit up some breweries. We went to Zero Gravity first where I was so excited that Conehead with Brio coffee was on tap. My parents each got a flight of four to be able to try all of their beers and of course Conehead, Green State Lager, and Little Wolf stole the show.

Next stop: Switchback. My dad cannot get enough. He loves Switchback and I am required to bring him some every time I go home. He thoroughly enjoyed a pint of their original and mom and I split a flight. I was obsessed with their tiny sample glasses and was able to convince my dad to buy me one. He also treated me to a create-your-own six pack.

For dinner we went to Farmhouse. We started out chatting in the lounge next to the fire and I treated my parents to a round of beers because we hadn't had enough already...oops. For dinner my dad had the chicken and biscuits, I had the beef duo (iron!) with creamy grits and roasted brussels. Mom got a burger because they do those so well.

It was an early night and I slept like a baby.

Sunday morning I got up and ventured over to my parents' hotel to run on the treadmill but it didn't work. So then I came back home to shower and met them at a bagel place before heading back to my apartment to enjoy a leisurely breakfast. I showed my parents the scrapbook I made, I'm very proud of it.

We then hit the road to Waterbury where we had more drinking and eating plans. It was seriously too cold for anything else. We went to the Boyden Valley tasting room in Waterbury and it was a great experience. Dad loved the wine so much that he bought a case and I lucked out by getting a few bottles. So excited. They have a maple fest coming up in a few weekends and I happen to have that weekend off. Fate.

Lunch involved Prohibition Pig which always reminds me of my friend, Teal, and the first time we experienced the shoestring fries and their homemade sauces. I tried their brisket and was pleasantly surprised, not that I had any doubts. We hit the road and I drove with my mom for the first few hours so we could bond and my dad could evaluate my car. He's so good to me.

I drove the rest of the way to Portsmouth while singing very loudly to some music. I picked up some groceries before getting to Julie's and being greeted by some very happy dogs. I went for a quick run through downtown Portsmouth and really enjoyed the light and the temperature.

I cooked dinner for Greg and Julie that night (well, Greg cooked the chicken). I made power bowls complete with quinoa, chicken (Greg cooks it so well), roasted brussels sprouts, carrots, and mushrooms, avocado and siracha. It was seriously delicious and I went back for seconds of chicken and brussels. It tasted so nutritious and satisfying. Julie served some wine on the side. Never against having a few glasses with the twin. We both appreciate a good vino.

Relaxing and planning a fun adventure in Portland tomorrow. Very excited to try Duckfat and Holy Donut...stay tuned.

Random Thoughts

I am totally thrown off this week and it's only Monday...that's because I worked Friday and Saturday and had Sunday off. That never happens. It was nice to be able to go out for {a few} drinks with my friends and feel like a 25-year-old again. Sometimes I feel so much older...Needless to say Sunday started a bit later than anticipated but it felt so so so good to just lay in bed with nowhere to be. Anyways, I thought I would pop in with a few random thoughts that I had recently (most of them occurred on my run with Christine).

  1. People think it is so strange that I like to talk while I run. But in reality, what is more distracting and enticing than good conversation? It's also a great time to think. I have had so many ah-ha moments while running lately! It's a better time to come up with ideas than the shower. Also, when out on a 10 mile run you have time to talk about anything and everything. Christine and I got really personal at times, but also had a stimulating conversation about nutrition and eating for athletic performance.
  2. Does anyone else play the Monopoly "game" at Shaws? I never did because I didn't know how and just thought it would be another piece of paper that I end up recycling. But after hanging out with Christine the other night she mentioned that her mom played and won a whole knife set! The prizes are pretty significant. Therefore, I started collecting and I am looking forward to going grocery shopping this week (it's always been a hobby of mine - is that weird?). I had this great idea to plan a dinner with my friends that is Monopoly themed. The only items that you can use are the items marked at the store with the Monopoly symbol (basically a marketing ploy to get you to buy that product because you get more game pieces). This could be a disaster or extremely fun and interesting! Stay tuned.
  3. The part of my body that hurts the most from marathon training are my toes...no lie. The hurt so freaking much. I find myself trying to stretch them by pointing and flexing my feet and even rolling my toes if that makes any sense. Today I stretched while brushing my teeth.
  4. Going off of the previous point I am the worst at stretching. I get done with my workout and I just want to be done. Even if my butt muscles hurt (right now they do) I am just lazy and don't want to stretch. I have been trying to do the number 4 stretch more often for my tight hamstrings...does that stretch have a fancier name?
  5. Is it worth it to buy another pair of the same running sneakers that I have now? Definitely curious for feedback on this one! I LOVE my new Nikes and my shin splints have never felt as great as they do now. While it could be a combination of the shoes and running my long runs in my compression sleeves, but I also found another color of the shoes that I love.
  6. Towards the end of the week I eat so many eggs. I really am not much of an egg eater for breakfast (give me some oatmeal or pancakes any day!), but I typically eat them for lunch or dinner. In the past 3 days I have eaten 6 eggs. I made fried rice twice and then had an egg and toast (and butter!) sandwich for brunch today seeing as I woke up at 10:30am and staying in bed until 11:15am.
  7. This weekend I ran 10 miles and thought wow that is the longest training run I have done in a while. It's half of what my longest training run will be (*gulp*). Julie also ran 10 miles today and her post talks about how this was her shortest run in a while. Perception...it's a funny thing. Not going to compare myself! I am pretty proud of these little legs taking me 10 miles today. Happy to have had someone willing to listen to me ramble for that time and brave the cold and the wind with me.

Those are my random thoughts for this week. There were definitely more, but I have either saved them for another post or forgot them.

Weekend in Review

Hi guys! How was your weekend? What was the one highlight that you can't stop thinking about? For me, it was going to a new restaurant that I can't stop raving about... My weekend tends to go from Thursday night into Friday because I work Saturday and Sunday typically. So Thursday night is usually when I relax and have some fun. This past Thursday I had a little bit too much fun...

Three of the girls in my cohort came over for our first book club meeting. We may have slacked a bit and only two of us finished the book and we didn't discuss it all that much...maybe next time? Or we will just get together for wine and apps. Either or.

(I love any excuse to host)

After a few glasses of wine and lots of snacks (anyone else have trouble sitting in front of food and literally not noticing until it's gone?) I never buy myself snack food and, therefore, whenever it is around me I have a hard time showing any amount of control...it happens. It's part of normal eating!

We went to the basketball game on campus that night which was at 9pm! They were broadcasting the game which was why it was so late. I forgot that I need glasses and was a blurry mess, but I did know that we won!

...

The next morning Rebecca and I were supposed to run 8 miles but numerous glasses of wine coupled with a late bedtime did not work in our favor. We texted each other at 5am and decided to run in the afternoon instead...that didn't happen either thanks to the windchill...so we each did a few miles on the treadmill and planned the 8 miles for Sunday morning.

Friday I did some homework before food shopping and cleaning. Then I went to the hockey game on campus. I was full of school spirit this weekend! I love watching hockey games! Certainly brought back memories from my freshman year when I would go to every single game...sometimes multiple games in a weekend. It was a good game and there was an impressive fight, but we lost 4-2.

Saturday I had to work from 8:30-5. I ended up seeing a friend at work who invited me to go to dinner with her and her boyfriend that night at 8pm since my plans had fallen through. I really wanted to try out the restaurant that they were planning to go to, but I am an early eater...I was starving at 6pm and found myself snacking on roasted veggies and an apple with a slice of cheese. But boy was the wait worth it!

There is a tiny (and I mean tiny) new "hipster" bar downtown that is a bit off the beaten path. The house wine is $3 a glass! I had to have a glass just because I can't pass up a good deal. The other great thing about the menu is that the plates are small and so you can order a bunch of different plates to share. We went with the root vegetable fries (2 orders because they were that good), brie crostini (although I was not feeling the brie after all I had on Thursday), duck tacos (for the amigos), beef sliders, and pork belly flatbread with kimchi.

Who stole the show? The pork belly flatbread with kimchi for me! This is seriously what dreams are made of. I ate half of it because I could not get enough. It's a small pizza to begin with but oh my gosh so so so tasty. The kimchi is so flavorful and complements the pork belly and cheddar cheese so well. The waiter said they make the kimchi on site...impressive! My friend asked if she could buy some, but unfortunately could not. I will be back for more.

The roasted vegetable fries came in at a close second. They were thick and fried to perfection. The flavoring on them was so delicious and accented the root vegetable undertone so well. They came with a basil aioli on the side, a great addition.

I also loved the beef sliders. The patty was juicy and tender and the bun was buttery and fluffy. Very good as well. I didn't eat one bite of the beet salad that came on the side because all I wanted was bread and meat :) I had one and shared the other in case you were wondering. Plus they were truly tiny as you can see!

The atmosphere, to top it all off, is so cozy. While there isn't a lot of seating it's an ideal place to go on a date or with friends. We all got drinks and split 3 apps and 3 medium plates and I spent a grand total of $16! Great place for college students who are budgeting (*cough* me *cough*).

...

Sunday morning I woke up at 6am to have a slice of pb&j toast before my run. I wasn't all that hungry from the night before, but knew I needed something if I were to go for 8 miles. I am so confused how my sister runs without eating anything...got to replenish that liver glycogen!

(Talking mid picture...but Rebecca wanted the world to see my snow beard)

The run felt great! Eight miles went by in a flash except for the part where the sidewalks were hardly shoveled and every step felt like an enormous feat. It was a good way to start the day despite having to work from 10:30-7pm. I wore my hot pink compression sleeves to work and just went with it!

By the time I got home at 7pm after a long day and almost a foot of snow (I drove 15mph home) I was starving and in desperate need of some comfort food. After standing in the kitchen thinking "what do I really want to eat right now..." I went with a bagel with butter and jam and scrambled eggs. I ate a few carrots to get in some vegetables for balance. This was the bagel that I bought Friday thinking I was going to do a long run in the afternoon and wanted to use my free bagel coupon. Silly me went to the wrong bagel place and ultimately had to pay for the bagel. Good news is I have enough coupons to have a bagel every single day I have a long run. And yes, as a future dietitian one of my favorite foods is a bagel.

Why feel guilty about enjoying your favorite foods? They can be a part of a healthy eating pattern. Enjoy your favorite foods without guilt. The stress and anxiety is not worth it. I spent the rest of the night relaxing and now I am trying to prepare for a week of homework, research, my first test, and a bunch of running and other appointments. Having a full day off would be really helpful one of these days...maybe Friday?

(This is from last night showing that yes, Vermont still gets snow)