learning to eat, cook, and live healthier one day at a time.

Monthly Archives: November 2012

It’s been a while! A lot has happened since my last post. I celebrated my 22nd birthday last weekend, finished my last fall quarter of college EVER, and am now home in Minneapolis, enjoying a nice four-day Thanksgiving break.

The Thanksgiving festivities started off with the Turkey Day 5k in Minneapolis yesterday. My goal was to finish in 23:00 minutes, which did not happen. I wasn’t far off and ended up at 23:34. There’s always next time! After I crossed the finish line I waited for Mike who came in shortly after with a frighteningly red face, as you can see in the picture.

Turkey Trotters

My Mom came down to the race to cheer us on, accompanied by the doggies!

Alfie and Poppy

Note my Christmas socks. I might’ve suffered a little holiday confusion yesterday.

After the run, we dropped Mike off at his parents’ house before diving into the Thanksgiving cooking. The menu consisted of:

  • Turkey (duh)
  • Classic mashed potatoes
  • Glazed sweet potatoes with pecans
  • Rutabaga
  • Asparagus
  • Corn
  • Wild rice stuffing (personal fav)
  • Cranberry sauce
  • Deviled eggs
  • pumpkin pie, apple pie, and the new addition of apple cake!

Needless to say there was no shortage of food.

A fraction of the food.

Ready to dig in!

After stuffing my face with my own family, I headed over to Mike’s to top it off with some more dessert. It was one of the best Thanksgivings I’ve had in recent memory. To top it all off, we got about an inch of snow overnight, creating that perfect winter wonderland feel for Christmas! Let the Christmas spirit begin!

let it snow!

Last week Mike got tickets for us to see Daniel Tosh at the State Theatre tonight for my birthday! Should be a riot. As soon as I get the details from my mom, I plan on posting the recipes for the stuffing, sweet potatoes, and rutabaga on here. Stay tuned!


I have a little treat to share on this rainy November day!

Think it looks strange and gross? Think again. I make my signature protein “cakes” a few times a week. Lately, I’ve been making a little pumpkin pie version. I was planning on sharing that recipe today, only to discover that I am completely out of canned pumpkin! Such a travesty, right? So, I improvised. This banana cake is low carb, high protein, sugar free, and takes about 2 minutes to make, including prep time!


  • 3/4 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
  • 4 tbs liquid egg whites, or about 1 1/2 egg whites
  • 1 tbs fat free plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tbs sugar free banana pudding mix (just the powder)
  • pinch of splenda and cinnamon


Combine all ingredients in a shallow bowl and microwave for one minute. If you have a high powered microwave, the time may be a bit less. Just keep an eye on it. The cake will start to rise after about 30 seconds. Be careful not to overcook, or it will become dry and chewy. A little moisture is good!

And that’s it!

yummy yummy

It’s delicious as is, but I topped mine with a dollop of light cool whip.

See the runnyness? It tasted like banana cream…mmmmm

Next up, I’m going to try it out with pistachio pudding mix. Or butterscotch? Oh, the possibilities!

Today’s Workout

I had such a great workout experience this morning. I’m currently doing a three week plan that involves a lot of intervals. Saturdays are usually the only days I have to really take my time with my workouts, so I took advantage of the opportunity this morning.

I began with a run down to the lake. Once I hit 2.5 miles I stopped and completed the following circuit:

  • 25 squats
  • 25 squat pulses
  • 20 lunges (each side)
  • 40 calf raises
  • 20 fire hydrants (each leg)
  • 20 hamstring curls (each leg, on all fours)
  • 20 kickbacks

(repeat 2x)

After my circuits, I hit the pavement and completed the 2.5 mile run back to my apartment! It felt so nice to be outside this morning. It’s in the sixties in Chicago today, which is abnormally warm for November. Being outside really motivated me. I was shocked to see my average pace was around 7:30 per mile during my runs both to and from the lake. Wowie!

The rest of the day is going to include a ton of cleaning, and then dancing at the DePaul Women’s basketball game tonight! Go Blue Demons! Mike and I are doing date night tomorrow night, so hopefully I’ll have some indulgent food photos to post on here.

It’s official! I completed my first 15K today, ever!

Getting pumped up for our final mile!

This morning my friend Tessa and I ran the Hot Chocolate 15K in Chicago. It was my first 15K experience, and it was a good one! I hadn’t trained very hard prior to the race. The longest run I did was seven miles more than two weeks ago. However, the nine plus miles were much easier than expected.

The morning began at 5:00 a.m. I had difficulty sleeping last night due to my excitement and anticipation. Tessa and I had about an hour wait at the start line before our corral was released. This was actually the most painful part of the whole experience! Waiting in 35 degree weather at 7:00 a.m. is not my idea of a good time.

Luckily, the rest of the experience was great. My pandora wasn’t working for the first four miles, and Tessa’s iPod was broken for the last five, but we made it! Both of us couldn’t believe how good we felt the whole time. Our final time was 1:30:00, but I feel like we could have pushed it a little more! Either way, I’m happy we finished feeling good.

Another plus was I had my Mom and Mike there to cheer us on!



The post-race finisher’s cup was filled with chocolate goodies including hot chocolate (duh), a chocolate bar, and chocolate fondue with marshmallows, bananas, and rice krispies for dipping! YUM!

Tessa and I with our finisher’s mugs!

After the race, my mom, my brother, Mike and myself went out for a nice brunch. I treated myself to a giant multi-grain waffle topped with fresh fruit, nuts and maple syrup served with a side of egg whites!

Oh, what a day. It was great to see my mom and brother this weekend. I can’t wait to get some home time in around Thanksgiving. This whole 15K thing has really opened my mind to the possibility of running future races. I’m going to look into some half marathons for the spring in Chicago.

Time for an early bed time!

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