Good evening bloggies! First of all – I’m trying out a new layout and a new picture size. I think the default ratio on ecto is a tad too big. Also, I am LOVING getting all of your comments – keep them coming! I also respond to each one, so go back and check if you wrote me a note on my last post!

Where did we leave off? Dinner, last night .. turned out to be super boring. Mah b.

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Buffalo Crackwrap, steamed brocc with parm, steamed carrots and brussels with S&P

I got expectedly snackalicious:
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Plain Chobsies with frozen blueberries

It turned into a giant purple mess of antioxidant-y goodness – loves it!
Today. Ohhhh, today. Well, I haven’t been sleeping that well at home this break, which is incredibly unusual for me, as I always sleep the best at home, in the sense of restfulness and not waking up. Every single night this break, I have woken up around 3:30. Sometimes I can toss and turn and fall back asleep, sometimes I’m in and out until about 5:30 when I actually fall asleep again. But this morning, I could not get back to sleep. I turned my TV on for white noise. I flipped channels. I read blogs. At 6ish, I finally got up and did the 20 minute free podcast of Morning Flow #1 from YogaDownload.Com – ahhhh. I’m pretty sure I’ve finally fallen in love with yoga, to the point where I crave doing it, all thanks to that one-hour class and Heather.
I made coffee, watched some TV, read some more blogs, tried to nap, gave up, ate breakfast:
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Fuji, pom, MultiGrain Cheerios with warm skim

I thought about going to the gym. I continued the TV, blog, and nap attempt cycle a few times. I made lunch.
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Tuna salad in a Joseph’s wrap with some granny covered in cinn

Santa’s not going away anytime soon. Well, until I’m back at school a week from today. Blech.
I dressed myself for a Target and gym trip, felt snacky, popped a cookie:
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Peanut Butter Cookie Larabar

and immediately felt too full. Fail.
I bought some socks, a new pair of sweet royal blue running shorts, and the new pina colada Orbit flavor at Tarjay, and still super full, headed to the gym where I had a hideous run. Hideous. I won’t dwell on the worst run I’ve had in at least two months, but I finished 4 miles in 37:37 and walked another 20 or so minutes. My hamstrings are gloriously sore (but not too too bad) from yesterday’s amazing yoga. The run and walk made them feel fab but they’re still pretty tight – in a good way. I love sore muscles!
I snacked on some very friendly clementines while I made din:
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They’re only a couple weeks late. Dinna:
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Baked sweet potato rounds with s, p, and chili powder + hummus and spring mix on fluffy whole wheat

Nom. My favorite sweet potato parts were the burnt ones! They taste like toasted marshmallows. I need to remember to slice much thinner slices for the crunchy, fry-like texture. Actually, I might do a batch super thin, like some of mine were, so that they’re like chips! Honestly couldn’t tell the difference. Oh sweet potato, you are the perfect food.
Congrats to all the Disney marathoners! Meghann, Caitlin, Ashley, the twins, Megan, and everyone else did AMAZING! My friend Jess, who I’ve known since kindergarten and ran (she ran, I walked) cross country with in high school finished in 3:37.48 – she is obviously beyond awesome and qualified for Boston!!!!!!!! I’m so proud of her! AND it’s her birthday! She celebrated by running a marathon. I went shopping and ate a lot of Japanese and had cake. It’s cool.
I really want to make an inspiration/goal board a la Gina for 2010. I have a few ideas of what to put on it, but it definitely needs to be fuller :0) Did you make an inspiration board? What is or would be on it?

I’m feeling snacky!
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I hope you all had a great day, whether you celebrate or not!

I started Christmas morning with an egg white omelet with Laughing Cow and some apple with cinnamon.  And coffee, of course.  After opening presents, my mom and stepdad headed to his sister’s house and my brother and I just hung around until it was time to go to my aunt and uncle’s.  We were supposed to be there around 1:30, so I figured we’d be eating around 2 but I wasn’t sure.  I also didn’t know what we’d be eating, so I ate a small lunch around 12:30.


Half a hummus and spinach sandwich, green beans with salt and pepper, and spicy black bean soup with a dollop of Fage

We ended up opening presents around 3 and not eating until 4:30ish.  I snacked on a couple plates of apple, pear, blackberry, and pomegranate fruit salad – yum!  For “dinner” I had salad – mixed green with mushroom, cucumbers, balsamic vinegar, and EVOO – plus veggie picked out from some vegetable fried rice and some roasted chicken.  Eating at weird times throws my stomach off.  I don’t understand why we can’t eat meals at normal times on holidays.  It seems like an American tradition to eat a huge meal in the middle of the afternoon, with snacking before and desserts after.  I think that’s part of the problem people have with holidays and overeating.  If we just kept meal times the same, I don’t think people would overeat as much or have to strategize!

Anyway, before bed I ended up snacking on a piece of whole wheat bread smeared with a plain Laughing Cow wedge.  At first I didn’t know what I wanted – I heated up some soup (Campbell’s Chicken Tortilla) but it was gross and too much food anyway.  Then I decided on a CrackWich, but ended up putting the hummus and hot sauce back into the fridge.  Sometimes simplicity is best when it comes to snacks.

I woke up this morning and had coffee and half an apple pie Larabar before heading to the gym:

I took it relatively easy – at least on the treadmill.  Still incredibly bored on it – 3.1m in 30 minutes, followed by 15 minutes on the stair mill and 15 on the elliptical – the last half in reverse mode.  I did reverse mode today and on Christmas Eve.  It’s something that quickly becomes obvious I never do, since I feel my quads and other muscles working in ways the stair mill, running, and forward ellipticalling do not make them.  It’s hard.

Breakfast part two was simple and quick:

Plain Cheerios with skim and half a banana

What was your favorite present of the holiday season? I got lots of fun stuff yesterday!  DVDs, gift cards, new Pandora charms, etc.  Pretty sure my favorites are the Whole Foods gift card from my brother and this:

A Swedish massage from my mom and stepdad!

Off to make lunch and watch season one of Weeds!

I did, I’m sorry.

But first – After lunch I was in a much better mood and set off to get my errands done.  After a painless trip to UPS and a very surprising quick trip to the post office, I was done!

I came home to relax and watch some TV before heading to the trail for a run.  I munched on a chocolate chip oatmeal cookie for some fuel:

AKA a chocolate chip Z Bar

I bundled up in my Lululemon Wunderunders, a long sleeve tee, a fleece, my Lululemon brisk run headband, fingerless gloves, and my winter jacket for the ride over.  I should have been tipped off when I saw a guy walking up the road with skis.  Apparently, there is no plowing of the trail in the winter.  Very sad and not okay.  But it was freezing anyway.  I had some shorts in my car, so I decided to just go to the gym where I was very productive:

  • 30 minutes on the StairMaster
  • 15 minutes on the elliptical
  • 15 at 6.0 mph on the treadmill, starting at incline 1 and upping .5 every lap

I decided that I actually didn’t want another quesadilla for dinner, as delicious as the first one was.  I knew I needed to get some veggies and whole grains in, but also had another idea.  So I decided to split dinner into two parts.  I essentially almost always do this, just “unofficially.”  I also haven’t been eating dinner until 7:30 or 8 all week which is SO unlike me.  Since I got home from the gym at 6, this worked out perfectly.  I figured that if I split up dinner into two parts, I won’t eat dinner, a large snack later, and then a smaller snack right before bed.  Maybe it will help with my sleep troubles tonight?  Dinner part one was super simple but sososo good!

WW toast with hummus and spinach + steamed brussels sprouts and green beans with salt and pepper

How can people hate brussels sprouts?? The hummus and spinach sammie was obviously delish but the brussels sprouts were the best part of the extremely green meal.

Off to make dinner part two (any guesses?) and finally get down to my Netflix stash!

After spending 6 hours in the library yesterday and 8 and half there today, it’s depressing to know that classes aren’t even over for the semester yet. Even though I’ve been super busy, I have found time to try a few new purchases:

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Siggi’s Icelandic Skyr in Orange & Ginger

Siggi’s Icelandic Orange & Ginger Skyr Opinion
Taste:
The tartness of the yogurt goes really well with the refreshing citrus and ginger – amazing! 5/5.
Texture: Thick like soft serve! With real tiny ginger chunks at the bottom! 5/5.
Fill Factor:
Great for a snack! Definitely need toppings and/or a piece of fruit for a meal. 4/5.
Ingredients: “Pasteurized skim milk, agave nectar, candied ginger, orange extract, live active cultures, vegetable rennet.” 5/5.
Comments: This was so different than any other yogurt I’ve had. As with the plain and blueberry flavors, I LOVED it and wish they were sold at stores other than Whole Foods for a better availability and also cheaper! But this is definitely a product I’ll go out of my way to get at WF.

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Amy’s Black Bean Burrito slathered with Fage and Frank’s

Amy’s Black Bean Burrito Opinion
Taste:
Yummy! Love the black beans, veggies, and spices. Pretty authentic tasting for a frozen burrito. 4/5.
Texture:
Mostly mush, but that could be my fault since it’s been in freezer for a while and I used the microwave to heat it up. Could still see beans and other veggies though! 3/5.
Fill Factor:
For only 280 calories, I ate it with a couple carrots and some sugar snap peas and I was set for the rest of the night. 4/5.
Ingredients:
“Organic whole wheat & wheat flour, filtered water, organic onions, organic black beans, organic potatoes, organic corn, organic broccoli, organic bell peppers, organic tomatoes, organic kidney beans, expeller pressed high safflower oil, sweet rice flour, spices, organic garlic, organic green chiles, sea salt, organic jalapeno peppers, tapioca flour.” Mostly organic and vegan! 4/5.
Comments:
This was so delicious – perfect for when I’m craving Mexican without the frightening nutritionals. 8g of fat (1g saturated), no trans fat or cholesterol, 9g of protein and 580mg of sodium – kind of high, but not nearly as high as most canned soups and other frozen meals!

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Chocolate Peppermint Stick Luna Bar

Luna Chocolate Peppermint Stick Opinion
Taste:
“I’m eating a thin mint.” 5/5.
Texture:
Chewy and crunchy like a rice krispy treat with a yummy peppermint-bark like icing! 5/5.
Fill Factor:
Held me over for around 3 hours yesterday, could have gone longer! 5/5.
Ingredients:
Very long list, but nothing too scary – and 70% organic! Plus lotssss of vitamins and minerals!  4/5.
Comments:
Thin mints I’ve missed you in my life. Now I don’t have to. Dear Luna, make a magical bar that tastes like a Samoa. Thanks.

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Odwalla Super Protein Bar

Odwalla Super Protein Bar Opinion
Taste: Nothing special. Subtly sweet, but with no really specific taste aside from the raisins. Very slightly nutty from the soynut butter.  2/5.
Texture: It stuck to my teeth when biting into it, but was very chewy and grainy in a good way. Perfect density.   4/5.
Fill Factor: Held me over for 4 hours! That’s what 14 grams of protein will do for you. 5/5.
Ingredients: Again, pretty long but nothing terrifying. A lot of soy products (nutbutter, protein, etc.) so not for those who try to avoid processed soy.  3/5.
Comments: Definitely nothing great here, but I’d try it again, especially since I know it fills me up! It’s a really good size bar too.

Like yesterday, my packed library lunch was a spinach, hummus, and raisin sandwich on a deli flat and an apple with cinnamon.
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Yesterday’s snack was the Chocolate Peppermint Stick Luna, today’s was the Odwalla Super Protein. Are we sensing a trend? It continued into dinner:
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Crackberry pic of a Morningstar Mushroom Lovers burger with a plain LC wedge, Frank’s and spinach in a whole wheat wrap+ sweet potato fries and ketchup.

Dinner was so good and VERY filling – I’m still stuffed.
After dinner I headed to Big Y to pick up some supplies for the week:

  • Grapes
  • Macintoshes
  • Tub of hummus
  • Plain 0% Chobani
  • Carrots
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Black beans
  • Luna bars – Chocolate Peppermint Stick, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut, Lemon Zest, and Peanut Butter Cookie

I’m hoping it’s not too frigid for a run tomorrow morning, but at 7am it’s supposed to be 26 degrees – guess I’ll be bundling! Hope they salted the sidewalks, they were still kind of icy this morning. At least I won’t get frostbite de-snowing my car with a tupperware lid again ….

Upcoming finals = sporadic posts. I still have one more week of classes before that torture begins and I’m trying to catch up on all the work my professors thought it would be fun to assign us the week before finals. I think they get paid extra for the amount of tears seen around campus this time of year.

Some highlights:

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Siggi’s Icelandic Skyr in Orange & Ginger (review soon!) with Cranberry Fitness Trailmix

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The return of the hummus, spinach, and raisin sandwich.

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Being the only person in the library.

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Delicious dinner including an Amy’s Black Bean Burrito (review soon!) with Fage and Frank’s
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Snow.

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Christmas tree!
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My ornament.
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Starbucks Thanksgiving Blend and OPI’s Mrs. O’Leery’s BBQ.

Yes, Thanksgiving blend. I just went in there and asked for Christmas blend, but they’re still brewing the Thanksgiving blend. That’s what you get for Storrs, CT, where the cows outnumber the people.
Why are so many foodie items so difficult for me to find? I finally got pumpkin pie yogurt at the end of November, so naturally I’ll be drinking Christmas blend by Valentine’s Day.
I really wanted to run this morning because the snow is so pretty! But, I decided to take today off after yesterday’s incredibly slow 4 miler (41 minutes). Yeah, my legs and I are fighting. So I thought I’d give them today to cool down. Probably best that way, since the roads are fine but the sidewalks are still icy.
Trying to write a cover letter now .. in the cafe because the library isn’t even open yet.

Because it is December 3 and today it was 65 degrees. I went running in shorts and tee shirt. It is Connecticut. Also, it’s supposed to snow Saturday.

The semester is (finally) winding down and that makes me super busy busting out papers, rewrites, extra credit, and oh yeah, finals.

The past couple days have been boring anyway. A couple nice 4-milers, and a lot of boring classes I’ve had to farm my way through. Why am I an English major?

Some pics of mi comida from the past couple days:

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Some carrot cake. Review soon.
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Library snackage: snap peas, carrots, hummus, and salsa.
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Apple – plus about 8 more ….
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Strawberry Chobani and Kashi Heart to Heart
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Hummus, raisin, and spinach sammie + Honeycrisp
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Plain 0% Fage (loverrrrr) + strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, a blackberry, and a Kashi Honey Toasted 7 Gain granola plank.

PC020350.JPG Everyday 365 Breakfast Blend in my new Starbucks mug.*

PC020356.JPG PC020357.JPG PC020358.JPG 3 egg white, LC French Onion, Frank’s and salsa in a WW tortilla + tiny apple with cinnamon.

* My new Starbucks mug! Stolen in our office’s holiday party Yankee swap (along with a $5 gift card to Starbies!). It’s so cool! The black part is like a blackboard and it comes with a white pen to decorate the mug with. You bake it in the oven for 10 minutes and the paint sets! Such a great present idea if you need one!

Homework to do list:
American Lit

  • Rewrite paper 1
  • Rewrite paper 2
  • Write paper 3
  • Prep for final
  • Weekly online discussion post 12/3, 12/10
  • Extra credit – speaker write up

Children’s Lit

  • Finish Walk Two Moons
  • Come up with Walk Two Moons discussion question
  • Read Walk Two Moons article
  • Extra credit – speaker write up
  • Prep for final

Abnormal Psych

  • Prep for final

Human Sexuality

  • Homework due 12/8
  • Prep for final

Brit Lit

  • Prep for final

Woo. Hoo. 2 weeks from today the semester from hell will be OVER!!!!!!!!!!! And then I can focus on Christmastime fun and sleep, eat, and run for 4 straight weeks. Turning 22 is thrown in there too. Oh, and applying for jobs. Who knows how to write a good cover letter?? Or knows of any entry-level student affairs positions in higher ed, or store management jobs?

Dinner at the dhall was actually really delicious – and NOT a salad! Kosher kitchen is the way to go. Salmon with mixed veggies and summer squash, plus a piece of whole wheat toast with smart balance. So good.

Now I’m watching Elf and admiring our house’s Christmas tree :0)

A tasty giveaway:
PB & Jenny’s Kay’s All Natural Cookies giveaway – free cookies!!
Tina’s Mix My Granola giveaway and win a year-subscription to Real Simple!

I have been so exhausted in every way all day long.  Of course, when it’s actually time for bed – I can’t sleep.

I woke up at 9, not really hungry, but knowing I needed to eat then or have to wait until after yoga.  I had this tried and true combo:

PB130035PB130037Chobani Blueberry with a serving of Kashi Honey Sunshine + chamomile tea

Yoga was great!  We had the same instructor that taught my core yoga class the other night, but this was her normal yoga class.  I liked it a lot better.  For one, she talked less, but also, there was a greater variety of poses – including hip openers!  There were no standing poses?  And no downward dogs 😦 but overall it was a really great class with some new poses.  I’m definitely going to try to make it to her class during the week.

After yoga, which was a sorority sisterhood event, we had lunch catered by Panera!  Yum!  I grabbed half a Mediterranean Veggie sandwich and some pickles (although strangely only one is picture …)PB140038PB140039
I’d never had it before, but it was really good!  There was feta, cilantro hummus, romaine, red onion, tomato, cucumber, and peppadew peppers.  The website says it was on tomato basil bread, but one of my sisters said it was on a different kind?  Whatever it was, it was amazing!  Perfectly fluffy and soft, with a great crust!

After lunch, my roommate and I put on the second Harry Potter movie (we fell asleep to the first one last night) and proceeded to pass out for two hours.  Wait, why can’t I sleep?

I really wanted to run today – even though it was raining.  I had all intentions to even go to the gym after dinner, but my body is just. so. tired.  I don’t know what it is about this week, but my legs feel weak.  It’s hard to explain.  I’m not sore (except for my abs, thanks to Whittle My Middle), but the tops of my thighs and my hips just feel TIRED.  So I gave them a break today.  I think my fatigue is also related to the random sickness I had a couple days ago, which I’m scared is returning with a cough :(.  I hope I wake up feeling all right!  This whole being 2am-already-thing is messing with my schedule for tomorrow before it even (really) starts.  Being off schedule makes me anxious, but I’ll try to just go with what I feel since obviously my body needs some rest this week.

My roommate and I had a dinner date at the on-campus restaurant in our Student Union.  I got the Sesame Encrusted Grilled Tuna Steak with Wasabi Mayo  – “Sesame encrusted grilled tuna steak topped with baby field greens, avocado, red onion & cucumber with spicy wasabi mayo on a toasted kaiser roll. Served with a mixed green salad or chips.”

So good!  I’ve had it before, but the wasabi mayo was WAY too strong, even for me.  This time I got it on the side, as well as on whole grain bread instead of the kaiser roll.  The tuna, grilled rare and made so amazing by the grilled sesame seeds it’s coated in, was SO MUCH BETTER on the whole grain bread.  I also had the mixed green salad with low-fat honey dijon on the side.  I used very little dressing because it’s very thick and a little goes a long way.  The wasabi mayo was so much better this time, since I was able to use my knife to spread on as much as I wanted – just a thin layer on each side was enough.  It was a really great meal, especially since I don’t have to use real money to pay and I was full all night long!  That’s what good carbs, healthy fats and protein will do for you!

So I’ve just been lounging all night, tried going to sleep an hour ago, and realized it just wasn’t happening.  Finally, I got up and made a snack:

PB140040Carrot + roasted garlic salsa with grapes

I get really thirsty before bed but don’t like getting up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night, so this was a great snack.  I feel hydrated and actually a little tired now.  Plus, I need to eat up a lot of my perishables – eggs, milk, yogurt, veggies and fruit – before I go home for the whole week I have off for Thanksgiving!  I can’t wait to be home for 10 straight days.  I already have some fun foodie activities planned.  I think I’m going to read some more blogs and try to sleep again .. good night!  (morning …)