The Royal We

Hello! I hope everyone is having a fantastic Halloween week! I have finally gotten over the hump of midterms, and I think (knock on wood) they went well! That being said, I definitely spent some time relaxing with Netflix today (much needed) and am currently tackling the pile of laundry that has built up in the past week or so.

Let’s go through the past several days, shall we?

Monday morning began with a track workout. I did a warm up followed by 4x400m, including a timed trial of my 400m run. The good news is in the past few weeks with my training program, I’m 6 seconds faster! Running for a grade is definitely a good extra motivator.


Monday was quite the grind. I had a midterm in Exercise Physiology on Tuesday, plus I was leading section for my English class so I had to prep for that. I think I spent 9 hours studying for my midterm alone. My only break was to meet up to work on my English, and to teach an over capacity (!) spin class. The energy from a full class was exactly what I needed to refresh my mind!



Stuffed pepper, chicken, veggies.


Gluten free vegetable past and broccoli with sesame dressing (because there was no lettuce left). Plus a little rice pudding which apparently had almonds (but wasn’t labeled). And now I’m having a bit of an allergic reaction. Meh.


My new favorite snack: pumpkin pie filling (from a can) plus egg whites, cooked in the microwave. I got the Whole Foods brand which was pretty low sugar.

I have not gotten anywhere near sufficient sleep lately. I don’t think I’ve gotten more than 6 hours in maybe a week? That plus 9 hours of studying (plus other HW and class) had my brain so fried that by the time I was going to bed on Monday, I started talking to myself, which alone would be weird enough, but by referring to myself as the royal we. Oh sleep deprivation.


From my textbook-isn’t this adorable?

Tuesday morning I went for a short run to energize my mind and enjoy the fall colors.


Post run, I ate breakfast and stared longingly at the pumpkins that I would get the chance to carve with my dorm post-midterm.


I think the test went pretty well, and I got the chance to rest my eyes briefly before leading section, which definitely went well! At this point I was feeling my second wind.

Tuesday evening I went to Crossfit-we worked on bench press, and a long WOD:

10 minute AMRAP:

9 toes to bar (v ups for me because of my shoulder)

12 push press

15 squats

3 min rest

Helen, cutoff of 10 minutes:

3 rds of 400m run, 21 kb swings, 12 pull ups (I did TRX rows)

I was maybe a little too ambitious with my shoulder. It was feeling really strong prior to the workout, but the push presses were just too much volume. I started at 55# and had to drop the weight to just the bar in the middle. My shoulder was pretty sore afterwards, so I gave it a full rest today. At the same time, I think a lot of the soreness was just stretching and getting that flexibility back, because it’s feeling good now. I think it’s going to take some pushing while still being careful.

I stopped at Whole Foods for dinner and a couple of groceries. Dinner was veggie soup, roasted sage butternut squash, and brown rice.


On Tuesday night, I attended a school event that is a bit of a tradition here, but that combined with good conversations with cool people resulted in far too late of a bedtime.

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That being said, tiredness-wise I’ve actually been doing really well, although a day off was necessary.

I was planning on running today, but I’m glad I waited because tonight I found my new shoes in the mail! They will be broken out tomorrow!


Also-I’m planning a day in the life for tomorrow so stay tuned!


Fall Festivities

I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend! I’m still in the heat of midterms, but I thought I’d pop in and share some fun weekend happenings.


I had to start my Friday off on the right foot pre-midterm. An amazing Fuji apple from the farmer’s market with cottage cheese and sun butter. My midterm was a time crunch. I walked out with my brain fried, and grateful that I planned a track workout right afterwards! 4x400m-nothing too crazy, but homework for my exercise physiology class! I spent the afternoon running errands-including a flu shot, new running shoes, and some study time in Peet’s. That evening I went to Crossfit for some squats and a lighter workout that involved lots of push ups-my shoulder is getting stronger!

My evening plans involved friends and a nice bottle of wine.


I still cannot believe I will be leaving these people in less than a year!

Saturday morning I had planned on going for a fall run, but my legs were not feeling it. They had been feeling a little rough between my race, spin classes, and sprint workouts, so I went for a leisurely morning bike ride. I did a beautiful 15ish mile loop, and the good news is I felt much stronger than the last time I did it a year ago-those spin classes must be doing something!

Post ride meal scavenged from the fridge:

Sautéed garlic spinach, rice, and leftover chicken (served with ketchup of course!).

That evening was our Homecoming football game. My Crossfit actually arranged a tailgate prior to the game, so I enjoyed some time outside of the gym with my workout buddies. Everyone looked so different not in workout clothes!

At game time, I met up with some friends.

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Our mascot is a tree, and each year, it is quite the honor to be the tree. The trees are crazy-they usually have to do some sort of insane stunt to get the position, although many of these are kept under wraps. The tree makes its own costume each year, with many different interpretations, including a palm tree, the traditional pine, and this year a willow. A fun part of Homecoming is seeing the tree reunion!


I left at halftime (we were up by 2 touchdowns already 🙂 ) to head over to a Wine and Cheese night hosted by my sister. She had an extensive cheese selection, and pumpkin creme brûlée made before our eyes with a hand held blow torch. (How cool is it that she has that??) It was also fun to see her friends and discuss the wedding!

Sunday morning I was up bright an dearly to sub a spin class at my off-campus gym. It was a good class, and I left energized!

The main event for the weekend though?

PUMPKIN PATCH. There’s a historic farm across the bay (that has baby animals in the spring) with all kinds of ruminants, plus a full on pumpkin patch. I made my friends commit to going weeks in advance because I didn’t want anyone to miss out!


First up was the goats. I’m pretty sure these goats are the babies of the pregnant mothers I saw in the spring!

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The most exciting thing? I got to see my cow! I saw this cow when it was young (maybe teenaged?) my freshman year of college, and when I returned last spring, it had grown so much! This year? I got quite the wonderful surprise when I saw that it had a young calf! My cow is all grown up!

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After exploring the cornfields, it was time for the pumpkin patch! I was on the search for the perfect pumpkin.

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After an extensive search, I found the one!

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On the way back to campus, we stopped for pumpkin froyo. Because basic. And because fall. I got pumpkin froyo and salted caramel froyo. SO amazing.


I love fall!

WIAW-Senior Food

Hello! Happy Wednesday-halfway through the week! Woohoo! Today, I’m linking up for WIAW again!


I tried really really hard to take pictures today!

My morning began with a track workout. Not ideal after my long run yesterday, but I needed to time a 400m sprint for a class project by Wednesday so I trudged out there. Prior to the run, I had some crackers and a few pieces of dried mango.


I ran a total of 3 miles per my training plan, including my timed 400m.

Post-run was my typical breakfast-not the most interesting but gets the job done. Plain greek yogurt, banana, and sun butter.


After breakfast, I headed out for my fake first class. I dropped my 9am, but I’m trying to fill that time with other work so I scheduled myself to be at a coffeeshop for the first hour of my day. A latte (decaf) beats biochem right now!


After my morning classes, I headed back to the house for lunch. Today was pho-I wasn’t sure if the noodles were gluten free so I stuck to chicken and veggie toppings. Yum!


After lunch I was craving something a little sweet and carby, so I had a couple of dates and a pumpkin muffin from the freezer.

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These are green because I used sunflower seed butter in place of almond in the recipe, and there is a chemical reaction between sunflower seeds and baking soda!

After an afternoon of classes, I pulled some zucchini bread out of the freezer-I totally owe you guys that recipe!


Crossfit today was good-I can now do a burpee with no shoulder problems, which I couldn’t really last week so this is progress! We did 5 rounds of 3 hang power cleans, 5 burpees, and a sled push at max effort, and then took a full recover, repeating for a total of 5 rounds. It’s crazy-I’ve been away from my school Crossfit for 3 months and I feel like everything is different-the people, the equipment-so weird!

Dinner was a salad from Trader Joe’s-rainbow slaw. It was a little plain for my liking-needed some meat! I grabbed a few pieces of chicken from the dinner at the house as they were closing up, plus some mashed potatoes and chocolate mousse.


After dinner, I had some caramel cheddar corn and a gluten free brownie.


After being sick for so long with no desire for anything sweet, I think my sweet tooth is coming back with vengeance! It’s a little frustrating because I feel like after every flare up, I have to relearn how to eat. Hopefully no more stomach flare ups though!

What is your favorite pumpkin product?

I think mine is pumpkin bread but I’m craving a pumpkin chocolate chip bar right about now!

Art Party + Wedding Dress Shopping

Hello! Happy Fall! I’m loving the subtle changes in weather and cooler temperatures thus far this fall! I’m currently doing laundry-I have to run 9 miles this morning per my half marathon training plan but I have kitchen clean up in a little bit and despite waking up early to do it, I was running a few minutes late so I didn’t try to fit it in-later today!

School is finally kicking into gear. I already feel so behind, but I’m also enjoying my time here. Sometimes when a phrase from your assigned reading sparks a meaningful 2 hour conversation with your roommate, you just have to roll with it. And sometimes you have to cram in all the experiences unique to your school in your last year. Let’s back up to Thursday.

I went to Crossfit for the first time in weeks! I did a combo of hang cleans and rowing-I skipped the overhead presses. It’s frustrating that my shoulder is still limiting, but I really have to compare how it is week to week and be patient. I could do the press overhead, but brining the bar back down hurt.

After a full day of classes on Thursday and a much needed nap, I tackled a half marathon training run-5 miles on the hills! It felt like perfect fall weather. Maybe I can get behind evening running after all? The timing would work out better, but I love how I feel after a morning run as well! Anyways, since my stomach has been better, my sweet tooth has come back. On the way back, I was thinking about how awesome gluten free brownies would be-specifically a kind with white chocolate chips. I returned at dinner time, and guess what our chef made for dinner? I couldn’t believe it! SO good!


Really though, the entire meal was awesome. Wild rice, salmon, herbed chicken.

After dinner, I hurried to get ready for a truly unique Stanford experience-a party at the art museum on campus. To get in the spirit, my house had a fun get together beforehand that included throwing water balloons filled with paint at canvas to make some art of our own! Sadly the balloon that I threw went through the fence!

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We made the trek all the way across campus to the art museum, but it was a nice night! At the event itself, there was food and student group performances, plus access to the museum.

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It was a fun time, especially spent with friends.

Big event #2 for the week was Saturday! I started out with a fun spin class, and then headed up to SF as part of my sister’s wedding entourage for her first stab at dress shopping. AHHH.


We arrived to the city in time for lunch at a French restaurant and start with mimosas to celebrate the bride-to-be!


I had delicious roasted chicken with roasted potatoes.


We had some extra time before her appointment, so we stopped into a coffee shop nearby for cappuccinos-Wrecking Ball Roasters. Why is coffee in SF so amazing??


Wedding dress shopping was so surreal. How are we this adult?


She looked beautiful in the dresses and may or may not have found “the one.”


(It should be noted that this is not it.)

The dress she loved could only be held for a few days, so we made a last minute appointment nearby to get a feel for some other looks.


AHH so exciting! TBD on what the dress will be though! What’s important is she got a better sense for what she’s looking for, and now everything seems more real!

While we were driving home, my dad made me some pumpkin chocolate chip muffins from this recipe.


They came out delicious, in a healthy tasting way. But I ran that in a good way! I used sunflower seed butter in place of almond butter, so when I arrived back on campus, this happened:


Gotta love chemistry, my friends.

What pumpkin products have you made/eaten so far??

WIAW Returns

It’s been FOREVER since I did a WIAW post. This is mostly because I couldn’t figure out where the link up went. Here’s this week’s link!

So let’s dive in!


I woke up pretty hungry and had my typical pre workout snack of quick bread. I went with cherry vanilla bread over pumpkin because I cut the slices of the cherry thicker than the pumpkin.


At Crossfit, I worked (I say I and not we because I was the only one at the 7am class!) on double unders and reverse pull ups. My double unders are coming along-they’re still a little hit or miss for me for the WODs and I had so much trouble getting my last rep of the drill! The WOD was a long one. A 17 minute AMRAP of 10 kettle bell swings, 10 burpees, and 100m sprint. I got through 7 rounds + 16 reps. That’s 76 burpees. Yuck.

Post-workout, I had a carton of chocolate soy milk to refuel, while driving to take my car in to get the brakes fixed. Again. From there, I hit up a yoga class with one of my favorite teachers. I’ve started making it to more classes this past month and it’s already making a difference in my creakiness. My foot pain was significantly reduced afterwards too (I think because I stretched out my tight calves). This yoga class is also strangely comforting. I’ve been going to the same class (off and on) for 6 years now, and it hasn’t changed a bit, in the best way! In a time when so much is changing and has changed, it’s nice to have a constant.

After yoga, my mom and I stopped by Whole Foods to get some basic ingredients for dinners and I was starving so I grabbed a few bites of french toast casserole from the hot bar. SO GOOD. It’s made with cinnamon challah, and it’s super custardy.


It’s up for debate whether or not I should be eating wheat/gluten right now (because of the whole damaged stomach lining thing) and while this was delicious, I definitely felt sick afterwards. Darn.

Lunch was leftovers of the quinoa, roasted carrot, and grape bowl the other night. Plus a piece of my mom’s cornmeal crust pizza.


Plus a side of carrots and guacamole.


For dessert I had a big spoonful of vanilla fudge ripple frozen yogurt. I’m really liking Stoneyfield’s frozen yogurt. At 120 calories per serving, it’s a healthier option without all the artificial sweeteners.

Speaking of which…snack #1 was a small bowl of mint chocolate Arctic Zero.


I think this flavor has better texture than the vanilla maple. I sort of like Arctic Zero, but it’s definitely not ice cream. It’s essentially flavored water that is frozen. The first ingredient is actually water!

Plus a oat bite. I love Bobo’s oat bars. I highly recommend the peanut butter flavor (which I am allergic to…)!


I spent the afternoon looking up spin music and making a playlist for the class I taught that night.

Snack #2 was a small piece of pumpkin bread. I’m not normally one to snack all day, but it was a pretty active day and dinner wouldn’t be until 8!


I got to spin early (to somewhat beat traffic) so I took my puppy for a short walk. I can’t believe how long her tongue is!

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Class went well! I actually found out that afternoon that I will be teaching at my school today (Wednesday) and tomorrow. I was recently hired to teach there, so I’m ecstatic to get started! I was told the students in the classes would be RAs at school for training, so maybe I’ll see some people I know!

Dinner post-spin was basic. There’s really something to be said for basic, simple dinners. A baked potato with Earth Balance (simply because I like the flavor more than butter), broccoli with cheddar, and a scoop of cottage cheese. Plus ketchup for the potato!


Dessert was an actual bowl of the fudge ripple froyo.


That was my day of food! It’s good to be back doing WIAW!

What is the best thing you ate this week?