All Spin All the Time (+ A Playlist)

Hello! WIAW was fun, wasn’t it?

My day today was full of Spin! I started the morning with a 6am class at Revelry, one of my favorite spin studios.I didn’t have any reason to go that early other than the fact that I like that teacher! It was a tough class-we did repeats that were 8 minutes long, trying to beat your energy output each set.

Breakfast afterwards was a Siggi’s blueberry with sun butter and a side of pineapple.


After breakfast and a shower, I spent some time blogging and catching up on blogs. Then, my mom and I tried out a new coffee shop and had cappuccinos (decaf for me) and split a gluten free lavender lemon cookie.

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Not a bad cappuccino! Plus, with the start of September, it suddenly feels like fall in California and I love it. It makes the cappuccino and coffeeshop time feel so cozy. The funny thing about fall in California is I feel like it comes suddenly, and is very noticeable for California natives. Sure, it’s still warm and the leaves haven’t changed, but the air feels different and the sun looks like fall.

Afterwards, we took a trip to Costco to buy nectarines. I fell in love with a ruminant blanket (AKA cow) and plush pillow. It was probably made for a 2 year old, but I couldn’t resist! Plus, my kitty already loves it!


Lunch was at Mimi’s Cafe. If you ever go there, get the bran muffin. The bottom is soaked in honey, and it’s served warm. Perfection.


It came as a side to my Asian Chop salad.


I spent the afternoon napping, picking up my car from service, and tweaking my spin playlist that I taught that night. I taught it at my other gym last week, but I have a different audience for this class. Here’s the playlist I used!

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Class went well! This class was a free class on campus for dorm staff, and I think it was added last minute and not that publicized. Even so, I had a pretty good turnout, and we rocked the hills!

After class, my mom and I had a simple dinner. Mashed garlic cauliflower, cottage cheese, and roasted heirloom carrots (how fun are those??).

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I may have been a bit aggressive with the garlic though. Oh well!

As you can see, it’s been all spin, all the time! Teaching Tuesday night, taking a class Wednesday morning, teaching Wednesday night, and then I’ll be teaching again Thursday morning! I’m loving it!

What’s New?

Hello! First I’m going to cover our final day briefly and then talk about some life updates.

We started the morning with the continental breakfast again, and then I headed out to run. I technically had 6 miles on the schedule, but had trouble finding a trail so I decided to settle for 5. But then the trail ended earlier than expected and it ended up being 4.5. I’m realizing I’m not taking this training cycle or race too seriously so I’m ok with it. We found a bike path that went near the square and through vineyards.

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Then, we went to Cornerstone Gardens for lunch.


Asian chicken salad with mango for me. For dessert, my family split a balsamic strawberry parfait and a strawberry torta, which was warm cake with strawberries baked in the center.

Then, we walked around the gardens a bit.

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This picture shows a really cool display-a wishing tree. People write wishes on sparkly tape and tie it to the tree.

After the gardens, we returned home.

Ok-onto the life news. After being sick a fair amount last quarter, I thought I was better, or at least mostly so. However, I had another incident of the really sick feeling Monday night. I was planning on going to Crossfit, but halfway there I turned around and decided I wasn’t up to it, which I was extremely bummed about. If I had to guess, rich cake combined with my long run set it off. I spent the next few days feeling yucky on and off. It’s partly why I shorted my runs. It’s not a consistent sick feeling, but it’s kind of unpredictable. I feel pretty good right now, and I’m REALLY hoping I’ll be ok to do 15.5 tonight, but I really won’t know until tonight. After a rough evening Wednesday, I decided I should return to the doctor. He thinks it may be diet related, so I get to go on an elimination diet to try and identify a common trigger. The three things to cut out are dairy, gluten, and nuts, and I’ll add them back in a week at a time (minus nuts because of my allergy). As a result, things may look a little different around here for a while. I’ve been mostly avoiding dairy although definitely not completely lately, and I need to be more careful with nuts, including coconut which I have a mild allergy to but usually don’t avoid. So I’ll keep you guys updated on that and hope something works so that I can be back to 100% soon!

A foot update-today I visited my dad’s physical therapist so that he could check out my foot (plantar fasciitis). He thinks I shouldn’t run so much, and I’m considering cutting back for a while. I know I want to do the Giant’s Race in August, but I would consider doing the 10k instead of the half and focusing on other things instead-more on that in a second. He told me that my calf on my bad foot is pretty weak, and I walk badly on that foot-one of those things has caused the other so that’s something else I need to work on.

In terms of happier news, I will probably be focusing on spin a lot more in the coming months! I think I will be teaching more regularly at the gym I sub at, but in addition, I got hired at another place to sub! I’m extremely excited about this because it is the gym that I’ve always gone to, that I took my first spin class at, and that I learned to love fitness at. It’s a chain gym, and I always felt that if I was teaching there, I’ve met my spin teaching dream. Ahhh! Additionally, I still need continuing education units in the next year, so I see lots of workshops in my future!

What’s up with you?

Butternut Squash Soup with Citrus Cranberry Relish

Ok. This may come as a big surprise, but I have some recipes to share with you! To be fair, they’re from my grandma. But I’ve been doing some more interesting cooking!


On the fitness front, I’ve had a couple of rough Crossfit workouts, and then this morning I went to a spin class with one of my favorite instructors, which was awesome, and followed it with my new favorite treadmill run. If you’re interested, here it is!


I love intervals because it is much easier for me mentally to push myself for a shorter amount of time. I just plug in my audiobook and zone out-right now I’m listening to Divergent-has anyone read it? I really like it!

Back to food-I have a couple of things to catch you guys up on!

The other night for dinner, we roasted up a spaghetti squash and made homemade marinara sauce with fresh tomatoes, basil, garlic, and olive oil, topped with fresh mozzarella.


Yesterday, my family went to the farmer’s market and picked up a few things-most notably dried persimmons and Afghan food, which has served as a couple of lunches these past two days.


This is spinach and pumpkin bolani-the sauces are unpictured.

For dinner last night, I made stuffed sweet potatoes, filled with an over easy egg, gruyere, and sauteed kale. With a side of broccoli, ketchup, and fig balsamic tapenade.


Last night, I also prepped a big bowl of overnight oats made with frozen cherries and cherry greek yogurt. I think I’m going to do overnight oats more next quarter because it’s a pretty complete breakfast and I can just take a bite here or there pre or post workout.


And now for the recipes! My grandma made both the soup and relish for Thanksgiving this year, and I gobbled up the leftovers. The citrus cranberry relish has been a staple at Thanksgiving or Christmas for as long as I can remember, and the soup was a new addition this year because my grandma knew I am in love with butternut squash soup!

Cranberry Relish with Orange 

(From Mark Bittman’s Cookbook)


1 large navel orange

4 c (about a bag) fresh cranberries

1/3-1/2 c sugar or to taste


1.Remove orange zest and set apart. Remove and discard white part of orange and separate orange into sections discarding white part.

2. Put orange zest and flesh in food processor with cranberries and sugar-chop.

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

(From Jeanne Lemlin’s Veg. Classics)


2 T olive oil

2 medium onions, finely diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 T minced fresh ginger root

1 T curry powder

4 c water

7-8 c peeled, seeded, and diced butternut squash (about 1 large 3 lb squash)

2 t sugar

1 1/4 t salt

1 (14 oz) can coconut milk

2 T lemon juice


1. Warm oil in large stockpot over med heat. Stir in the onions, garlic, and ginger root and cook 5 mins. Sprinkle on curry powder and cook 1 min, tossing constantly.

2. Pour in water and bring to boil. Mix in the squash, sugar, and salt, and lower heat to a lively simmer. Cook 30 min or until squash is very tender. Pour in coconut milk and simmer 5 mins. Stir in lemon juice.

3. Puree soup in blender (let cool a little first).

My favorite way to eat this is topped with creme fraiche and the above cranberry relish!


In other baking news, I was looking through Cooking Light and made the spur of the moment decision to make the Triple Chocolate Muffins.


I think this was a good recipe, but I went wrong by using whole wheat pastry flour in place of normal-as a result the muffins were a bit dry and crumbly. I usually don’t think twice about swapping the two flours, but I guess most of my baking is banana bread, or variations on banana bread, and the banana gives it a little extra moisture.


On the life front, I spent most of the day trying to figure classes, declaring major, spin jobs. I think I found a couple of places to apply once I do my CPR certification this week, but one of them I think is a pretty long shot. 

Have a great week everybody! Anybody have exciting plans for New Year’s? I currently do not-but I’m working on it!