Next Quarter’s Meal Plan and Dining Hall Breakfasts

Hey everyone! I am literally so close to being on break! I only have one more exam to go-tomorrow morning! I’m taking a study break to blog-ok, to b honest, a pre-study break. For some reason I got a late start on the day, despite waking up and getting going before my alarm. But I’ve been thinking up a post all morning and I know I’ll be distracted until I post. 

First thing’s first. Since my roommate’s birthday is over break, I wanted to do something for her before. She can’t eat gluten, and we’ve both in theory been trying to avoid sugar, so I made her the 21 Day Sugar Detox Apple Spice Sponge Cake from Pain Free Kitchen, and it came out so well! Delicious!ImageImage

I started my morning with a spin workout on my own and a short run. When I walked out the door, I came upon Finnegan, the friendly campus cat. 


He was meowing at someone’s window when I heard him and called out to him. It was 31 degrees this morning-I think he was so cold! He walked right up to the door of my dorm and acted like he wanted in. I felt so bad, but I was on my way out!

My run was only an easy mile on the treadmill. I was planning for 2 but my calves were kind of tired from spinning, and my book on tape ran out. Ok, maybe MOSTLY because my book on tape ran out. Since I was on the other side of campus, it occurred to me to try the campus coffeeshop (a different one). I’m so glad I did, my cappuccino was fantastic. 


Also, I just wanted to share with you guys-I’m wearing sparkly pants. Hey, anything that makes me happy during finals week is good enough for me!

Now, let’s talk food. My eating habits haven’t been terrible this quarter. They’ve been pretty decent for the most part (not counting finals/midterm weeks…) and I generally feel pretty good. 

As for my body? It’s fine. It’s whatever. I can lift heavy things. That’s cool. But I’m ready for the next thing, the next challenge. I’ve set my sights on faster 5ks-I think my life goal is to break 23:00 (and no I’m not particularly close). I think leaning out is definitely going to help get me there-carrying around extra weight will only make this more difficult! Plus, I hate wasting food. And I hate spending money. And dining hall food for the most part is so-so. And I could definitely feel more awesome overall-I’ve had way too many stomachaches lately. 

For some reason, I’ve been especially hungry in the mornings the past few days, and I’ve actually been craving dining hall breakfasts. Here’s today’s (plus a pancake):



Toast with cream cheese, eggs, and spinach, a small blueberry muffin, and fruit. There’s nothing wrong with that. And yet…I feel so gross right now! Dining hall eggs…not the best. I’m not sure what they cook them in-tons of butter? Cream? Ugh. Anyways, back to the meal plan. I’ve made meal plans for myself in the past but they always horribly fail. Why? They’re completely unrealistic. Tip-never make meal plans when you’re really full and can’t imagine being hungry again. The food I plan is only a fraction of what I need to eat so I’m never able to follow them. That being said, I’ve been tracking my caloric intake the past few weeks. I have a pretty decent idea of how much I can eat to maintain my weight. Which means I can make much more realistic meal plans. Honestly, one of the biggest reasons I want to meal plan is to avoid wasting food and eat better food. And have more of a routine-if I have a plan for a similar eating schedule everyday, my body will adjust to it. Plus, if I plan I can go to the campus store and stock up on the veggies I need for the week-which takes meal plan dollars so free food!

I also want to focus more on eating REAL food. It’s hard to eat well when you don’t have the right things on hand. I found myself overdosing on Thinkthin bars the past few days, which is not great for my stomach-but they’re so convenient!

In the afternoons, I usually want something sweet and carby. So why fight it? It’s better than stuffing myself on “healthy alternatives” immediately before a workout (not a good feeling). I used to eat banana bread before morning weights in high school, and all kinds of quick bread before morning practice for crew last year, so it actually is the perfect pre-workout fuel for me (wonder why my body craves it? Our bodies are smart!). Over break, I’m going to make a ton of quick breads and freeze them. I’m already dreaming of my double chocolate banana bread. Image


For breakfasts, I might go back to my typical high school post workout meal of yogurt with honey (which the school market sells), or with brown rice syrup and cocoa powder. 


Maybe some days, cottage cheese and fruit. Maybe something with sweet potato? It’s going to take some experimentation. And maybe some meals at the dining hall-with hard boiled eggs, not scrambled though!

I also want to do weekly veggie prep. And lunch prep-I generally pack my lunch, and given I usually have -2 seconds to pack my lunch as I run out the door, it would be great if it was easy. And I love getting some veggies in at lunch!


I’m also crazy excited to go home tomorrow and eat whatever my little heart desires. I’ve been craving my spinach-chocolate protein smoothies like crazy lately!


I’m also confident that I can maintain good health over the holidays-and no, I have no intention of depriving myself either! I’m in a much better place this year than last year-last year I felt like I was missing out on the holidays by being at school, so I compensating by gorging on holiday foods. I felt awesome over Thanksgiving break, so I’m just looking forward to enjoying the holidays free of worry!

Speaking of looking forward to-not sure if anyone’s been keeping track, but I have my Santa Run 5k on Sunday! I’m super excited-I pretty much have my outfit planned out. And no, I won’t be wearing a Santa Suit-I want to PR! After not being able to see me at the finish of the Turkey Trot, I had requests form my family to not wear the same color as everyone else, so I’m thinking my neon green shirt from last year’s Santa Run should stick out!


I’ve been training my butt off for this race! Track workouts 2x a week in dark sub-freezing temperatures, Crossfit, and extra rowing workouts…I’m ready!

I have 5ks scheduled for February and March before I get into half training, so I will definitely be able to see if my whole meal planning thing makes any progress for me! 

As for the future? I really love short speed workouts. I have 2 halfs scheduled…and after that? Haha, most likely I will either retire from distance running for a while because my feet definitely prefer shorter distances, or run a full marathon. Opposite extremes, right?

Have a great day everyone!

Do you plan or prep meals?

The Best Ever WIAW

Happy Wednesday! One day away from the big day! Let’s get into the celebratory spirit by celebrating food with Jenn.


This is probably the best WIAW I’ve ever had. I’m on vacation in Napa right now, and to say I’ve been eating well is an understatement. I’ve really been embracing balance this trip-I’m not worrying about eating decadent foods, but I’m getting in enough of the good stuff at well that I still feel great, healthy, and happy.

This morning, I slept WAY later than planned. I somehow ended up with a king size bed to myself-I’ve never slept in one before, and I’ll probably never sleep in one again, but it was glorious. Anyways, a later morning meant a light breakfast was necessary before my run, so I had some cranberry bread and blueberries.


I also had a bit of pannetone. We get this every year around Christmas-we don’t exactly like it but we always end up eating it. We got a mini one this year, but it was a bit dry.


Then, it was time for a run! It’s interesting to run in a place I’ve run once every year-I used to think a 3-4 mile loop was crazy long!








I have to make a note about this picture-this is around the spot that I ate pavement a few years ago on a run (luckily I made it through this run in one piece!). The best part? I was running to a restaurant to meet my family for breakfast. My mom snapped this gem of me before she realized I had blood streaming down my leg. Oh, memories. 


After cleaning myself up post run, we drove to a small town nearby, St. Helena.



My parents felt lunch was a priority, and after walking through downtown looking at menus, one place in particular place caught our eye. This was SUCH a good choice. My gosh, this was by far the best food I’ve had in a LONG time. We ordered some appetizers to start-grilled artichokes plus brussels sprouts.



These brussels sprouts were mouthwateringly amazing. I have no words. They were by far the best I’ve ever had. They were cooked to perfection, and so, so flavorful. 

For my entree, of course I ordered the avocado salad.


The ingredients were so fresh-all this salad was was fresh mozzarella, tomato, avocado, lettuce, olive oil, and salt and pepper. All the flavors were perfect together.

Then, we stopped at one of our all time favorite places-Woodhouse Chocolate. These candies are amazing-the flavors are just so fresh and spot on. The mint tastes just like a mint leaf. And they’re beautiful as well!






Confession: this whole box is for me. 


We also tasted some olive oil and picked some out to bring home with us. Then, we stopped in a coffeeshop so I could do some studying. My mom and I both ordered decaf cappuccinos.


The milk foam was good! Not like the amazing cappuccinos I get at school, but a close second, and definitely better than Starbucks!

Before dinner, we stopped in another small town to explore a bit-check out these adorable shops in old train cars!


Then, it was off to dinner at an Italian restaurant that we always go to. We started off with fresh bread and their signature dipping sauce, made with caramelized onions. I haven’t had this much quality olive oil in so long!


For my entree, I ordered the salmon, which came with polenta and steamed spinach. Everything was cooked to perfection. I have to confess, I’m a big salter. But the food this weekend has been just so good and perfectly seasoned that it just doesn’t need anything! It’s amazing to have well cooked flavorful food, a big contrast to dining hall food!

And since it’s vacation, dessert needed to happen. We shared bread pudding with maple rum sauce and a brownie a la mode.



This bread pudding was nearly as good as our family recipe, which is saying a ton! Definitely by far the best restaurant bread pudding I’ve ever had-hot, custardy, with plenty of delicious sauce. 

That’s all I have for you today! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

What do you eat on vacation?

Stress Eating

Hey guys! I’m taking a much needed study break to blog. Before I go into anything else, I have 2 pieces of exciting news. 

1. My friends and I got a CSA box! This week features the world’s largest pomegranate, pears, and a mystery fruit. (Excuse the lazy photo-taken from my bed while blogging.)



2. Yay! After looking around at races and considering timing/etc. I decided on this one! It should be a ton of fun-the race goes across the Golden Gate bridge. Since I’m taking time off halfs for the winter, I figure this will be a good warm up for a summer race that I might try to PR. 

Ok, back to my day and the topic of the day (since my day to day posts are getting a little repetitive, I’m trying to mix it up a little bit).

My day started off really awesome-ly. I woke up early for a gym workout-20 minutes working on hang cleans, 3×8 minute row, ab circuit. After a less than stellar lifting day, I stripped it down to the basics on my cleans and practiced just being in the correct position and getting the bar up. By the end, it was definitely smoother, and the bar was coming up faster. 

To make the morning even sweeter, I went for coffee, and the barista now officially knows my order! Ohhh midterms week. Image

And on top of that, this was the world’s best cappuccino. I swear it was half milk foam. My first 3 sips? All milk foam. It wasn’t that it had MORE milk, it was that the ALL the milk was frothy so the espresso at the bottom was less milky. YUM.

I only managed one more food photo, and then let’s get down to business. I got mystery bread again. I was thinking of getting something else, but it looked so moist and delicious, and I was definitely right!


Stress Eating

I’m definitely a stress eater. Example A: having zero time before midterms started and then being unable to wait in a super long line for my race packet resulted in this purchase: oat bars.


One thing I have gotten a lot better about this year is not letting myself get stressed-a far cry from last year’s disaster (helloooo mono). I’m pretty good at not letting things get to be (like forgetting my sweatshirt at Crossfit), much more so than I have been in the past. However, with midterms in season, I’m starting to feel the pressure. I was really stressed on Monday-something I realized I haven’t really felt in a long time. 

However, today the stress bug hit me. After getting some assignments back, I started worrying how I would possibly be smart enough to compete with the other students here in my classes (since everything is on a curve). It was silly because I didn’t necessarily do badly on the assignments, but I started questioning myself. After staring at my OChem homework with no idea what was going on, I stress ate. But here’s the thing. Stress eating doesn’t always have to be so bad. Here are some tips to avoid a stress-binge:

1. Before eating, take a walk, or meditate for 5 minutes. Try to bring down your stress levels before getting anywhere near food.

2. Choose healthy foods. If you eat crap, you will most likely feel like crap as well-that will only make your stress worse! On the same note-sugary junk foods will most likely make you crave more sugary junk foods, so you will tend to eat more of them.

3. Choose low calorie, high fiber foods. They fill you up and you can spend a lot of time chewing without killing your waistline.

4. Eat slowly. While stressed, many people have the tendency to shove foods down their throats. Try to fight this and give your stomach time to catch up. 

5. Move on. Stress eating happens. If it does, let it go-it’s not worth stressing over!

So what did I eat?

Carrots with hummus and goat cheese.


(Old pic)

Dried fruit


Chocolate granola bar.


Was stress eating the best thing to do? No. But I chose foods that would fuel my body and not make me feel bad-and guess what? After my snack, I headed back to the library and cranked out my chem homework. Life goes on! 

Now I’m not stressed at all.

Do you ever stress eat?

WIAW-Last Wednesday at Home

Aaaand here we are already at Wednesday! I swear this week is flying by. This could have something to do with the fact that it’s the last week before school starts. And I’ve managed to save any and all errands until now. Other problem-I ordered a bunch of things online recently that probably won’t get here until school starts. Whoops.

BUT before life get’s crazy again, let’s celebrate the party that Jenn hosts every week!


Monday for lunch I made a “throw everything in a bowl” kind of salad. The flavors worked pretty well, but not sure I would do it again.


It’s basically a Greek salad-except I used Thai Coconut Curry hummus, which was just a little too strange for this mix. I had the idea that it would make really awesome fried rice though!


While at the grocery store the other day, I passed by the pastry counter (because who doesn’t?) and saw this guy. My mom and I decided I should have one last celebration before I go back, so this was it! Since I’m starting a Mini Whole30 (just 7 days) on Friday, this was the right time. Carrot cake it was!


Ok, I know I keep going on about how everything I own is the same color so I’m ALWAYS matching, but I just had to document the evidence YET AGAIN.


I wore this to Spin the other night. Some exciting news-I talked to my Spin teacher after class the other night about becoming a Spin teacher. She directed me to the certification she used, as well as recommended some gyms to interview at. I’m excited about this-now that I’ve talked to her, I’m really gonna do it and get certified. My goal is to be certified (and hopefully teaching!) by the end of the year, although I’m going to wait until after my half marathon in October. 

Guess what Monday was?

NATIONAL GUACAMOLE DAY! You better believe I was all over that. 


The best part? I planned this meal before even realizing that it was that particular National holiday. #guacaddict


I celebrated in the form of a taco salad. I love this particular salad-the dressing is simply a mix of salt, pepper, olive oil, lime, and tomatoes. The meat on top (turkey) gives it plenty of flavor. I also subbed in chopped celery for the beans the recipe called for.

Tuesday morning I was up bright and early for a treadmill run. Which I really should never do; treadmill+early+tired=lazy run. I only made it 3 of the 4 miles slowly before giving up. I think I’ll add in some hill sprints tomorrow (which I’ve been meaning to do) to make up for it. 

After my run, I was pretty tired during yoga, so I grabbed a cappuccino from Peet’s, who makes one of my favorite cappuccinos.


Check out the milk foam on that baby! The sad part? I haven’t had coffee much at all this summer, plus I’m sensitive as it is, so I couldn’t drink much of this before feeling like it would be too much. I hate wasting good coffee!

I then headed to Whole Foods to stock up for the school year, as well as prepare for my baby Whole30. I decided soup will be a staple for me this fall-although I could only find 2 soups (yes, in all of the store) that were totally Whole30 friendly.

After drooling over the scones in the pastry case, I compromised and got some of their delicious vanilla granola over fruit, along with chinese chicken salad and a vegan taquito for lunch. 


After lunch I went to buy a water belt for running. Has anyone else thought that running belts are basically glorified fanny packs? Haha. I’m not thrilled with the one I got, since it holds just a large water bottle-I’m worried it will be too heavy. The ones with smaller bottles kind of interfered with my arms though…

I also saw this mug at Marshall’s and had to have it!


I also stopped at a craft store for some fall decorations for my dorm…and was met with an onslaught of Christmas. Really?? It’s September! But I’m not going to complain about all the fall stuff being 50% off!

Speaking of fall, try this recipe for microwave friendly Baby Pumpkin Pie! I just posted it yesterday!Image

And here’s an afternoon snack.


Ok, I’m going to get some outrage for what I’m about to say, but I’m officially done with Quest bars. For a while, I couldn’t decide if I really liked them or really disliked them-probably because the flavors are good but I just don’t like the taste of stevia. But they have kind of a lot of nuts, so my face breaks out. And they mess up my stomach. I had a piece of one today and my stomach immediately cramped up. It might be because of the sugar alternatives (like sugar alcohols)? Obviously everyone is different,t and most people love them, which is great but they just don’t work for me!

Aaand back to what I actually ate. A REAL Greek salad (as in, no weird hummus, just red pepper).


And a dessert of figs and a granola bar. I love that these bars now come in non-peanut butter, because then I don’t have to worry about my skin. Did I ever mention what happened in Hawaii when I ate a ton of Macadamia nuts? Yikes-I got weird lumps all over the back of my legs. Image

That’s all I have on the food front for you guys today, but I have to share with you what I worded on today. I have the Nike Women’s half coming up in October, so I wanted a special shirt to wear for the occasion. I made a Fitness is Sweet tank earlier this summer, but it’s just going to be too cold for that.Image

Since avocados are kind of the theme of my blog, I wanted to do something similar, but maybe a little more running related. I tried to find pictures of avocados running on the Internet, but luck. Who wouldn’t want to look at pictures of avocados running? I mean, come on! I found some pictures of other vegetables/objects running, so I decided to try my own hand at it. I started by tracing the legs and face.


I then drew an avocado to fit the arms and face. I decided the eyebrows looked to much like antennae, therefore making my avocado look like a colorful green beetle, so I scrapped those.


I then spent time designing the perfect shirt, only to find out at checkout that I could only have 2 colors on the shirt. I looked at a few other sites, but I had already fallen in love with the font. SO. After a ton of fooling around, here’s the end product, which I just ordered! It says “” on the back.


I’m so excited! 

What is your favorite fall produce? Have you ever made a shirt?

WIAW-A Taste for Coffee

Phew. I am pooped right now! I have to wake up in 6 hours, but I really couldn’t miss out on the What I Ate Wednesday party-hosted by Jenn! This seriously does make Wednesday so much more fun!


First, I just wanted to say I really enjoyed reading your comments on yesterday’s post. It was really interesting to hear all your perspectives!

Today was a really relaxing day. Kind of. I’m trying to cure my social media addiction before school starts, as well as soak in the last bits of summer. Therefore, I’m trying to spend more time outside and ditch the technology a little more. Yesterday I felt like I was in a computer-induced fog all day. When I spend too much time with my technology, time passes in a blur and I don’t really experience anything!

Anyways, I started my morning by waking up before my alarm (yay!) and heading to the gym for my first ever tempo run! I was a little nervous. Which was actually really silly-the run was only 3 miles, the splits being 10, 8:30, 10. And I know I can run 3 8:00 miles…so not sure why I was worried. I then spent the rest of the time before yoga doing some of my all time favorite lifts-back lunges off a step and single leg RDLs. 

I walked out of yoga feeling fantastic and totally at peace. It wasn’t quite lunch time, so I stopped into Peet’s for a cappuccino. Yes, I actually chose to drink coffee without desperately needing it! ImageThis is probably my favorite cappuccino-the milk foam was so smooth! It’s all about the milk foam with me 🙂 

I wish they sold extra small coffees though. I can never finish it-I was a low caffeine tolerance, and a high caffeine awareness. I was sad I couldn’t finish this, but realized my heart would be racing if I had tried. Sad. You better believe I cherry picked all the milk foam though!

To say I developed a taste for coffee is an exaggeration. I’ve developed a taste for cappuccinos….Which could become an expensive habit….

After sipping my drink and reading in the sunshine, I stopped by Whole Foods for some protein bars for my trip (I have quite a few training runs while on vacation, and vacation food before a training run=bad idea) as well as lunch from the hot bar. ImageI had some lackluster Chinese vegetables, a chicken potsticker, avocado and kale salad, and sweet potato polenta. I wish I had skipped the Chinese food though-the kale salad stole the show. I was fairly certain I wouldn’t like the citrusy salad, but it was perfectly light and summery. 

I couldn’t find ThinkThin Divine bars (which are chocolate and coconut), so I had the taste for chocolate and coconut. I happened upon these bars-they’re also gluten free!

ImageThey fit into my sugar standards for a granola bar (only 8 grams!) as well, so I was sold. These far exceeded my expectations-they tasted just like fresh coconut! The perfect sweet finish to my meal. 

Confession: I wanted to sit outside of Whole Foods to eat, but I opted to sit inside because my pictures would look bad outside. #bloggerproblems

I then sat outside on a bench to read some more. This was my view. Isn’t this a cute little neighborhood?

ImageLater in the day, I changed into shorts for a walk with my audiobook. 

So here’s a question-did I purposefully match my outfit perfectly or are those the only colors I own?? I’ll let you guess the answer to that one.

ImageI’ve been really enjoying these walks lately-I like my book!

ImageAfterwards, it was time for a snack before a possible softball doubleheader. 

I had a delicious farmer’s market nectarine, carrots with White Cheddar Laughing Cow, and one of these guys.

ImageI’ve fallen in love with the peanut butter flavor in the past, but the cranberry orange was just as good. If you see these guys- BUY THEM.

My softball game went well-it’s the playoffs, so we play until we lose. We won both games tonight, and were pretty hungry afterwards. My sister, her boyfriend, and my mom and I all went out for Bermese food in downtown Palo Alto.

You know you’re underdressed when the waiters pull out your chairs for you and place a cloth napkin on your lap…whoops.

The food was delicious though!

ImageImageImageWe were right next to a gelato place…Let’s just say it’s taking a little time to wrap my head around eliminating sugar for good. In good time my friends.

ImageBut for now-caramel chocolate and creme brulee FTW.

And since this is supposed to be What I ATE Wednesday, not what I DID, here are some more fun things from the past few days. 

ImageAsk and you shall receive-the recipe for banana chocolate chip custard is here.

I’ve been loving my snack plates lately-this one is an Asian pear from the farmer’s market, a fig, and carrots with White Cheddar Laughing Cow. This is my first time trying the flavor, and I must say-I’m a fan!

ImageDinner last night was a good one as well-Asian Lettuce Cups from the Cooking Light app, served with steamed snap peas and garlic and herb brown rice and quinoa. 

ImageAnd lastly-one of my favorite meals from the week. We bought green onion pancakes from the farmer’s market (seeing the theme here?), and served them with a fig and goat cheese salad (with leftover chicken).Image


As you may have noticed, I’ve been kind of obsessed with figs this summer.

And I’ll leave you with that. Have a great day!

Do you like Farmer’s Markets? Favorite find? Do you ever unplug for a day? Are you addicted to social media?