Monthly Archives: January 2017

I Should Have Done a Healthy Travel Series

Another weekend, another cross-country trip.

I really should have turned all these weekend trips into some kind of “healthy travel” series. Seriously. This weekend’s destination? The Boston area.

Because I’m gone SO much, I’m really trying to fit workouts in where I can, and maintain healthy eating habits (because if I don’t I will not feel too good…).

My flight Saturday morning left at a very sane time, so I didn’t have to leave for the airport until 9am. There were no Crossfit/spin classes early enough, so I went to the gym to do my own thing. I actually really like these workouts. I actually love the no-cardio lifting workouts, where there is no time pressure and I just work on what needs work. Because I deadlifted at Crossfit the previous night, I did squat day. I want to spend more time focusing on my power lifts (squats, deadlifts, bench). We’ve been doing sets of 20 reps for squats at Crossfit, but only at 60-75%. I wanted to try to work a little heavier than that. I worked by way up to 165# for doubles, which is heavier than I’ve been lifting lately, but still not that great for me. I did 4 sets of 2 at 165. I need more time with some heavier weight on the bar, that’s for sure! Then I did some accessory arm work: 3 sets of 8 single arm press (while kneeling on a knee) with 25# and 10 tricep dips. I finished it all off with abs via a Blogilates video. Abs, another thing that has been neglected lately!

A side note: I think my body is starting to feel the 3 teaching spin classes a week because I feel like I’ve been WAY hungrier than normal. Friday night, right as Crossfit was starting I got hit with that intense hunger despite eating normally all day. Huh.

I made myself a quick protein smoothie+Cheerios post-workout. I always try to squeeze in nutrients where I can because you never know what you’re going to end up with! Smoothie: frozen cherries, milk, cocoa powder, chocolate protein powder. Current fav (plus we’re out of frozen bananas).

I always pack plenty of snacks for the trip. I packed lettuce+hummus+a hard boiled egg to eat on the plane, as well as a few leftover roasted carrots. I was going to have that with crackers, but ended up passing a place at the airport with lots of delicious looking vegetables, so I picked up so butternut squash and brussels sprouts salad.


We were lucky enough to get a nonstop (FINALLY), and arrived in Boston around 8:00pm. I’ve been anxiously monitoring the weather, and was happy to realize my 2 jackets from the plane were sufficient!

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On the way to the hotel, we stopped at Panera, where I had my usual half Fuji Apple Chicken salad, plus some gluten free crackers that I brought.


We stayed at a Doubletree, as Doubletrees give you free, warm, delicious chocolate chip cookies. Sadly, I’m allergic to them (nuts) so I ate a granola bar in a sad attempt to replicate what I was smelling.


Sunday morning, my dad and I both started the day with a 3 mile treadmill run. After that, we headed to the hotel’s breakfast buffet, which was a nice one. I had a few bites of egg and potato, and then had Chobani yogurt with Cheerios and fruit.


Then, it was time to explore! The temperature was definitely manageable.

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We stopped in the nearby town of Worcester. The pronunciation of that is so silly to be. Apparently about half of the letters are dropped!

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We stopped at Wormtown Brewery to sample some local craft beer. We both tried Pumpkin Ale and Pilsner.

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Afterward, we drove into Boston, to Quincy Market in search of Wicked Good cupcakes.


Lunch first though! There was tons of lobster and crab! I ended up getting lentil soup, a Greek salad, and rice pilaf. Sadly, it was far more food than expected so I didn’t finish most of the salad or rice.


Sadly, the cupcake place was out of gluten free. My dad tried a chocolate sea salt caramel cupcake though, and said it was pretty good.


Cupcakes in a jar—isn’t that fun?

Then, we were off on the streets of Boston.


We went to the Boston Tea Party ship and museum. I saw it on the map on the way in and it looked interesting.

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We were all given feathers and backstories, and I thought my dad’s was hilarious:


We started with a “town meeting” for some historical background, and then went out to the ship to learn more and toss some “tea” into the water.

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After, we headed into the museum to see some reenactment videos, more history, and part of one of the original tea boxes that was salvaged.

It was an interesting tour, and a fun way to kill an hour in Boston. Upon exiting, we found ourselves in the bakery/cafe, with the most amazing smell of chocolate chip cookies. Imagine my delight when I saw this:

Finally, what I had been craving all trip! I got some with tea (of course).


The sun was going down and the temperature was dropping, so we made the trek back to our hotel and had dinner at the restaurant there. I had a kale salad with roasted butternut squash, chickpeas, and chicken.


And then got to enjoy leftovers from my pack of cookies!

Monday morning hotel breakfast was similar: yogurt with cheerios and fruit, plus a bit of eggs.


Lunch was a catered Chipotle burrito bowl, with plenty of guac.


The best part of the day?

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Finally, it was time to head for the airport. We grabbed some food to eat on the plane. I got a salad with goat cheese and some kombucha, and ate it with crackers.

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Other plane snacks included a protein bar, smoked salmon jerky, cheerios, and an apple. When we arrived home around 10:30, my mom had some vegetable soup waiting for us.


But more importantly, she made a mini gooey butter cake! If you recall my St. Louis adventures, gooey butter cake is a St. Louis classic. She made a version with GF flour. This was a little different than what I had in St. Louis, a little less gooey and more custardy than sweet, but was still delicious!

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And now my friends, it is back to temporary reality. I’m home for a whole 2 days, which includes teaching a spin class and taking a final, before I’m off on my last (albeit long) adventure! My final trip takes me to 3 eastern locations, and lasts 10 days. Stay tuned as I freeze my face off!

Day in the Life: Winter 2017

I’m at an awkward phase of life. I’m not in school full time. I’m not working full time. (I will begin working again when my 10000 interviews are over and I’m home more regularly!) I always wondered what people do with their days, especially when they aren’t working. I have a lot of friends who have taken time off between college and now, and I’m always curious what their day-to-day life is like. So I wanted to share my experience. Here goes nothing! (Well….hopefully not nothing.)

5:15am: Alarm


I mostly go to 6am Crossfit. Which is a little annoying that I have to get up that early for no particular reason, but I like getting things done in the morning and the 7am Crossfit class is being phased out. I get ready and go downstairs for a pre-workout snack.

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5:45: Leave for Crossfit. BRRR. It’s either pouring or frosty in California these days.


6:00: Crossfit. I actually found the workout really frustrating. They’ve been programming so much STUFF into class lately that we haven’t really had time to work on things. After a warm up, we had about 5 minutes to do cleans. We worked up to 80% for 3 sets of 1, but I literally only had time for 2 warm up reps moving up in weight, and I didn’t feel ready when the clock started. We did a clean every 30s, and I just didn’t feel warmed up or recovered enough. It felt heavy and I actually missed my last set and had to re-do it. At this point I was super frustrated as we moved on to 5 sets of 6 non-kipping toes to bar (my toes did not reach the bar…) and 30 double unders. THANKFULLY my double unders cooperated today. Finally, the WOD. 7 minute AMRAP: 12 burpees, 8 Russian kb swings (53#), 6 pull ups. I got 3+3.

7:15: Arrive home to a beautiful sunrise.

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I wanted to hold off on breakfast as long as possible since my lunch was going to be so late, so I distracted myself by packing a lunch and cleaning up.

Salad: pear | grilled chicken | blueberry chèvre | lettuce


8:00: Breakfast! Blueberries+flapjacked mighty muffin.

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8:30-10:30: Get ready for the day, write up a blog post, get my spin playlist up on Spotify (I used an old one but it was on iTunes not Spotify), work on studying for my final.

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10:30: Eat my Cheerio snack.


10:45: Leave to drive down to Stanford to teach spin. It’s about a 25 minute drive, but parking lately has been impossible so I have to allow an extra 25-30 minutes. Blah.


11:15: Arrive on campus and find a (legal!) parking spot right away. Yes! I hang out in my car for 30 minutes or so and do some research on my phone.

12:00-12:50: Teach spin! It went well. I used a playlist I made a year ago, and it’s one of my favorites so I’m pretty familiar with it!


1:30: Arrive at the library. I’m STARVING (as per usual on my lunchtime teaching days), and sit in the cafe area (a vending machine with tables…) to dive into my packed lunch. Salad that I made with champagne vinaigrette and GF cheddar cracker crumbs.

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1:50: Get to work on studying!


3:10: Break for a snack. Nothing new here.


3:20: Finish my chapter and then realize the library is far too loud with the influx of high schoolers to study (I require silence, unfortunately, or I get so distracted!) so I start this blog post.


3:50: Leave library and head to the grocery store+GNC. I needed some more protein powder, and wanted to try some protein bites that I’ve seen on Instagram (I’m a sucker for advertising…). I also found a new brand of protein bar that comes in a ton of flavors that I’m actually not allergic to, which is rare, so I made out quite well!


5:00: Arrive home and start making dinner. It’s a breakfast for dinner type of day! I mix up the GF waffle mix and then start making a scramble while my mom is on waffle duty. I’m a firm believer of carrots in scrambles.


The scramble included grated carrots, green onions, mushrooms, garlic, tomato, spinach, and English cheddar.


I decided to dip my waffles (this plus one more) in maple syrup, and was a little overly ambitious with how much syrup I would actually use. Whoops.

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With a side of pup!

After dinner we cleaned up and turned on some Netflix.


I bought some half price holiday popcorn and tried a few handfuls. SO good.

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I also broke into one of my GNC finds. A Red Velvet protein bite. It was good!

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I’m typing this up as we finish our last episode of Gillmore Girls. I still need to shower, but I’m shooting for being in bed at 10:00 to read a little!

After 4 Years It’s Hard

Hello friends! I’m coming at you with another post. As I was going through the things I wanted to talk about, I realized: wow. After 4 years of blogging, coming up with a reasonably interesting title that hasn’t been used 5000x is hard. So that’s what we ended up with today.

I’m also currently working on a Day In the Life for today, during this strange, in-between period of my life. I figured today was as typical as any day, so why not? So look for that tomorrow!

Yesterday (Monday) began with Cheerios (berry) and Crossfit. For strength we did a million back squats and presses again, and then the WOD, which I didn’t love because I think kettle bell cleans are stupid. I’ve also only done them maybe twice ever, so not my favorite. Plus tons of snatches, which ended up being ok.

400m row

50 kb cleans

40 squat snatches (I used 55#)

30 knees to elbow

20 walking lunges with bar

10 box jumps

400m row

Not my favorite, but I got it done.

For breakfast, I decided to try a variation on my current fav chocolate banana protein smoothie. Instead of banana, I used frozen cherries! It was a delicious combo. Chocolate protein, cocoa powder, frozen cherries, a little milk. I tried to use what I thought was an equivalent amount of cherries as a banana, but I ended up with a pretty large smoothie instead.


Eaten with pumpkin spice Cheerios.

The morning was spent at the library. I officially signed up to take my final next week, which is a big relief because there is literally one day I’m home and available to take it. For lunch, I packed Sunbasket leftovers. I really like this dish!


Lunch was on the lighter side, so I grabbed a Bobo’s Lemon Poppyseed bite as soon as I got home, before heading out to coffee with my sister and mom.

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I asked my sister where SHE thought I should go to vet school, and found her response interesting. I think she has a very different perspective than I do.

After coffee, I found myself STARVING. It was a bit surprising, and quite all-consuming. I figured my lunch/snack had very little protein, so I made a protein mug cake. It was very meh. Salted caramel protein+egg, topped with some salt and cinnamon sugar. The taste was good but the texture was a little hockey puck-like. Eh. Did the trick.

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I also had some tea out of what is apparently one of my numerous animal/vet-related mugs.

For dinner, we had Fannetastic Food’s Slow Cooker Moroccan Chicken Stew, served over spinach. Brazilian cheese bread on the side.


We all liked this but I think in the future, I would add the olives and apricots closer to the end. Both had their flavors sort of washed out by the long cooking process.

In my house right now, we’re working on cleaning up our eating habits a little bit, so to kick that off, I made chocolate banana ice cream for dessert. I blended up 4 bananas, plenty of unsweetened cocoa powder, a sprinkle of salt, and a dash of milk.


I served mine with whipped cream.


This was the perfect healthy and satisfying treat to end the night!




Food That Just Makes You Stop

Not going to lie friends, my blogging motivation has been lacking lately. I’ve had so much yet so little going on. Lots of thoughts to occupy the future, not a ton to do with my time this week. I actually had a rare travel-free weekend, and it was great to catch up with friends and hibernate in front of football on Sunday. I love sports (well, only the ones that matter…baseball and football. My parents are forever trying to get me into basketball but it is simply inferior).

Workout-wise, what’s been happening? 10,000 spin classes. Give or take. I taught my two classes on Thursday and then took a class Saturday morning. Crossfit has been there. I thought the whole 20 rep sets of presses were not improving my strength at all (they suck every time), but apparently they are doing something, because I expected my shoulders to die during push presses during Friday’s WOD but they were the easiest part? Huh?


3 rounds:

30 hang power cleans

30 front squats

30 push presses

I used 55#. Somehow I finished first? Just under 20 minutes.

I also snuck in an outdoor run on Sunday during a break in the never-ending rain. I ALSO broke in my new running shoes. These guys are my babies. They were essentially a graduation present to myself. I ordered them in June and designed the colors, but they didn’t come in time before I left for Tennessee, so I had to have different shoes in the interim.


SO FREAKING PRETTY. I didn’t realize my other shoes were worn out. I haven’t been running anyway near the number of miles I used to, so I assumed they would be good for longer. Long story short, I have been feeling my formerly broken foot more than I should have while running lately, and decided it was time. I also got new inserts finally. Guys. It made ALL the difference in the world. Normally at the end of my runs my foot is a little achy, but seriously I felt nothing. I felt like I could have kept running forever! It’s really important for me to have a stiff sole, so when the shoes started wearing out, my foot was the first thing to suffer.

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It was also a really beautiful couple of hours. The 3 mile run just felt meh thanks to some less than ideal food choices the previous days, but at my turn around point, I saw some beautiful stray black cats, so no complaints here.

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Now onto the food. What do you think?

Thursday evening after teaching spin #2 of the day, I went out to dinner with my college friend. We went to an Italian place, and celebrated our respective greater education admissions with drinks to start.


Even though it was a cold and stormy day (but not currently raining), we opted to eat outside, huddling next to the heat lamp, to avoid the wait. We had the outdoor area all to ourselves!

We got talked into sharing a special for an appetizer. Do you ever have those moments when you take a bite of something and just stop, because it’s so amazing? I don’t really remember having one of those moments. Until that app. OMG. It was balsamic poached pears with burrata cheese, and it was insane. The pears were slightly caramelized, and the cheese was perfectly creamy. The sweet and salty combo was just divine.

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Sadly, the pictures do not do the dish justice thanks to the night sky, but MAN. I’m trying to figure out how I can make it back there and have this again, which may be hard since it was a special! MAN.

My dinner was also good, but nothing could compare to those pears. I got a citrus salad with beets, ricotta, and avocado.


Friday, I finished all the regular work for my Microbio class! I just have to take the final (which is no small deal). I celebrated by making a Target run with my mom, where we bought every cereal known to man. I am LOVING cheerios for a pre workout breakfast (or to go with a protein smoothie), and wanted to take a brake from pumpkin spice and get something new (I stocked up on it). (Just a note though: I totally opened the pumpkin spice this morning anyways. Oops.) I was going to try the fruity cheerios, but saw the seasonal berry ones (pink!) so I got those instead. They’re good! I think my favorite currently might be apple cinnamon. We also saw girl scout cookie cereal. I can’t eat girl scout cookies mostly thanks to various dietary restrictions, but cereal I could do.


We got these+Thin Mint cereal. The caramel is good, but tastes a little artificial. The Thin Mint tastes EXACTLY like a Thin Mint. I would definitely recommend!

After Friday night’s workout, we headed to the Counter to cash in one a buy one get one free coupon. We all started with drinks, which was perfect given the busy time of day. I’m trying to find local beer that I don’t hate, and my dad recently discovered this Devil’s Canyon dark beer. I liked it a lot! Quite strong though!


My mom and I split a salad and a burger, which is my special creation. It’s chicken breast, gruyere, garlic aioli, tomato, greens, avocado, and green onions on a gluten free bun. YUM.

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Saturday morning my high school friends and I met up for brunch. We decided on something casual, and they suggested I bring Chloe. She was quite the mixed bag, behavior-wise.


Pro-tip: always bring a distraction! She was good while licking the peanut butter out of her bone, but unfortunately she finished it more quickly than I would have liked. She absolutely loves my friends to death, and her excitement could not be contained.

Until she conked out. Puppies.


Saturday night, my parents and I saw Passengers. Overall, I liked it! It was weird having a main character with my name though; that never happens! Afterwards we went to Pacific Catch, a vaguely Asian Fusion type of place. I got a teriyaki chicken bowl with brown rice and greens.


On Sunday, I had a few delicious new food finds. I am very well aware of what Trader Joe’s salads I am not allergic to (yay nuts…there are very few), but we found a new one with sweet potato, brussels sprouts, chicken, cranberries, and pumpkin seeds. My mom and I split it, and it was delicious!


Also good? A new Whole Foods find: pumpkin and cheese tamales. I think these are seriously the best tamales I’ve ever had. I like the more veggie-filled ones, but it’s nice to have some cheese as well!


I spent most of the rest of Sunday on the couch with football. I took a break to whip up some chocolate chip pumpkin bread, which turned out a little dry thanks to a different kind of flour.


I planned on freezing most of it anyway to eat in ice cream. My dad thought my “production line” was quite hilarious.


And FINALLY: Sunday night we made our last Sunbasket meal, which was braised carrots with chickpeas and yogurt sauce. It was seasoned with garlic, paprika, cayenne, and maybe coriander? The carrots and chickpeas were cooked up with diced tomato and raisins. Served over quinoa, topped with a savory yogurt sauce. We added spinach for some extra veggies. I think this was one of my favorite Sunbasket meals. We liked the vegetable-based meals a lot better than the meals that were mostly big hunks of meat.


FINALLY I’me going to end this post. I’m off to brave the storm to go study for my final at the library!

Stay dry, my friends!

Full Day of Eating|Sunbasket Fun

Hi friends! Halfway through actually taking a few pictures, I thought I would share a full day of eating from yesterday! I feel like sometimes my meals get repetitive, but it’s been a little while, so let’s do it!

Pre-Crossfit: Pumpkin Spice Cheerios, as per usual.

Crossfit was squats on squats. We did our 20 rep sets of back squats (130 for me) and presses, and then the following WOD: 21-18-15-12-9-6-3 overhead squats (55#) and push-ups, with 20 double unders after each round.


Protein smoothie/shake/whatever you want to call it. 1 frozen banana, 1/3c milk (to keep it nice and thick), 1/3 packet of Quest chocolate milkshake protein powder (I like Quest because I can buy small packets; I don’t go through protein powder quickly), cocoa powder.


More pumpkin spice cheerios.


Coffee: I went to Peet’s to work on Microbio before the library opened because I was up and at ’em early. This latte was inferior to last week’s.



Leftover spinach and goat cheese bisque+GF cheddar crackers (Milton’s). This was not enough food and/or protein….


I was considering running that afternoon but instead went home for more food. I tried cinnamon chex and had some leftover meatballs for protein.

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It was cold/stormy/yucky out so I wanted a warm snack instead of just a bar! I had a Flapjacked muffin. YUM.


The key is to undercook them a little bit; they taste like lava cake!


My college roommate stopped by for a few hours on her way to the airport, so we made a Sunbasket meal together! We made Barcelona Chicken with a Meyer lemon olive sauce. We started by splitting a beer 3 ways with my mom.


Aaaand the finished product! Served with paprika roasted sweet potatoes and parsnips.


This was a good one! I do wish there were more vegetables though.


My decided to meet up with another college friend for hot chocolate. The closest place to where she lives is Whole Foods, but sadly their hot drinks bar was already closed. Instead, we went home with some peppermint marshmallows (SO delicious) and made hot chocolate ourselves.

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It was so great to see everyone and catch up!

Now, I’m off to get ready to teach a couple of spin classes today! I just made my playlist and it is FIRE. My playlists are always best after a little break from teaching!