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    I'm Lauren and this is a blog dedicated to living life with a healthy balance. I love to run, strength train, bike and just be downright active. I'm a marathoner as of April 24, 2010 and am currently looking forward to qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

    I absolutely love to eat and enjoy great food but doing it all in moderation. You'll see healthy, organic foods on here frequently but you'll also run into things such as pizza and sweets. I believe you can have it all... just not all at once.

    I'm always learning and discovering new foods, recipes, workouts and ways to live a healthy lifestyle. Join me on my journey towards becoming my healthiest self.

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Party Number 1- Done

We’re back from Patrick’s graduation party and we had fun hanging out, enjoying our rooftop deck and eating some good food.

We love our rooftop deck for parties but I love it especially for laying out and getting some sun.  They had some cornhole set up for gaming later.

And I got to show off my now normal looking toes!!!  So excited that my toes are completely back to normal as of last night!  Summer, flip-flop weather ready!

We had a photo shoot on the rooftop before the party began.

He’s pretty stinkin’ sexy.

Take one for me:

Take two because I didn’t like the first one as much.

Much better!  Now onto the par-tay!!!

I had a couple of bites of potato salad, baked beans, taco dip, a few chips and a hot dog.  Not too filling but just right.

Just right, especially after a few bites of decadent dessert.

A chocolate chip cheesecake ball which I didn’t finish all of and two bites of each cupcake (chocolate fudge and lemon).

I’m learning to share my food more and more so I don’t find myself overindulging.  Works like a charm.  Such a simple concept but being raised in the South, I was taught to clean my plate and it’s hard to get out of that mentality most of the time.

When we went inside to say goodbye, they had the fondue rolling so I dipped one strawberry, one piece of pineapple and one bite of banana in the melted chocolate.  With a couple of plain pieces of pineapple too.

The hubs, me, Jack, and the college graduate, Patrick.

The sweet dog, Marie.  They had to adorn her with a barrette with the University of Louisville’s colors for where Patrick graduated from.  I love little Miss Marie.

And she loves me, obviously.

We couldn’t stay long because we’re off and running to a wedding after a quick wardrobe change.  I have loved today already and I know it’s only to get better with witnessing another man and woman entering into the blessing of marriage.  It only gets better by the day, people, better by the day.  Can’t wait to go throw on my party dress and have a blast tonight with my groom!!  See you later gators.

Community Supported Agriculture

Before I get into too much I figured I’d tell you all what happened last night.

After I blogged, I ended up doing some arm, shoulder and ab strength training.  I got ready for bed shortly after and decided to look at my poor toenail that was hanging by a thread.  Lo and behold, I discovered that a new toenail had already grow in under the older toenail.  I guess that all started happening when I started marathon training because it had apparently been lifting off the nail bed for a while.  I was extremely happy about this.  This meant I could cancel my podiatry appointment, wear toenail polish this summer and not have a jacked looking toe for the rest of my life.  So I proceeded to take the old toenail off.  I got it 99% of the way off and realized the right side was still attached deep into the cuticle bed.  I then proceeded to be even more bull headed and poked and prodded on my toe for over an hour.  With no such look of having it budge, I decided to stop.

I headed to bed and fell asleep by 10:30, only to wake up at 1 a.m. with a throbbing, pulsating pain in my toe that I had worked on.  Being even more stubborn, I decided the only solution was to work on it some more and get that last part out of my skin.  After another hour of nothing, I sat there and just cried.  What had I done to myself?  I wrapped it with a bandaid and tried to lay back down and sleep.  After a long while of it throbbing, I guess my finally was exhausted enough to fall back asleep.  So needless to say, I didn’t get much sleep last night and my toe still hurts majorly.  I spoke with one of our doctors at work today who has run several marathons and he even looked at my toe and said it looks like it is infection free and that I just need to keep it covered and let the new nail push that part of the old nail out.  No running until that happens though!  So I was just completely exhausted from last night.  Me and my stubborn self, all my fault.  My mind immediately went to seeing my toe having to be amputated, all because of me being so head strong.  Thankfully it is already feeling better and I’m keeping my hands off.  So pray for a quick and speedy recovery and no infection.  I’ve definitely learned my lessons from all this toe drama.

Alright… onto the rest of the day.  We had an afternoon nurses reception and they had much better choices to eat than this morning’s reception.

Fountain flowing of chocolate?  Yes, please and thank you.

Lots of cream filled puff pastries and mini cheesecakes.  Glad I don’t care for either two.

Lot of cheeseballs, cracker, hummus, pimento sandwiches, veggie wraps and veggies.

Veggie Bruschetta

My plate of goods.

I ended up not eating but one veggie wrap because they were so dry.  I loved everything else though and might have had a few spoonfuls of chocolate too.  Because that’s how I roll.

Hence the reason I am completely not hungry for dinner tonight.

I biked home in some hot, humid, muggy, 80 degree weather and was extremely excited to open our refrigerator and see this.

And then I saw this on the counter!  All free stuff from Kraft foods.

Ok, onto the big blue box which is NOT from Kraft foods.

It’s from the CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) that we joined this year.  We’ve been interested in joining a food co-op and thought it was the perfect opportunity when some of our friends from church decided to start their own with a farm they bought just a few miles away from Louisville in New Albany, Indiana.

For 26 weeks we will be receiving fresh fruits and veggies at our doorstep.  This was our first week and we couldn’t wait to see our goods.  We believe this is a great way to continue to eat organically for a fraction of the cost of what it would cost to buy at the store and support our local farmers, or in this case, friends who are breaking out into this venture.

Radishes.

Pok Choy. (Not Bok Choy)

Scallions.

A bag of various lettuce mix for salads or what not.

All of the organic, perfect goodness.  Fresh from the earth!

I can’t wait to dig in.  The first few weeks will be a lot of spring, lettuce mixes but I can’t wait to watch our boxes grow as the season matures!  I’ll definitely be eating things I’ve never tried before or that we’ve never cooked at home.  It’s going to be a fun 26 weeks!

We also will be receiving a dozen farm fresh eggs every 3 weeks as well.  We had the option of a weekly dozen but we definitely don’t eat eggs that often so I think every three weeks will be just right.  And who knows, we might be receiving fresh chicken to be cooked too!  We’re extremely excited about this opportunity.  You can count on me definitely sharing all of this new knowledge with you as we jump on this venture.

I decided I needed a little fruit to balance out all the carbs and chocolate I ate today to cap me off for the night.

I’m perfectly content now.  I’ve showered, packed the lunch for work tomorrow and will definitely be in bed and chilled out way before my 10 o’clock bedtime goal!  Hope you had a happy hump day!

Have you ever joined a CSA?  Do you prefer to go to the farmer’s market during the season or just shop at the store?

Bedrest

Can I just say… I’m officially obsessed with Greek yogurt?! I will never voluntarily buy the regular yogurt again!  Oikos does it right and I can’t wait to try some other brands too!  The blueberry fruit on the bottom yogurt was exceptional.  I was totally satisfied and happy after eating it for my afternoon snack.

I came home to a wonderfully made meal tonight.

Roasted broccoli.

And this.

This was my favorite kind we’ve tried yet!

All together now with some barbecue grilled chicken.

This Barbecue sauce is money!  Look for it in a store near you.  I’m so proud of our Memphis barbecue sauce.  Way to do it right Memphis!

How did this roll get into my hands?!

I’ll take it.  I’m such a bread fanatic.  🙂

With a little bit of chocolate for dessert.  The bunny is almost gone!

Well, with such a great post, there comes some bad news.  My right big toenail will not heal for anything and I discovered today that my second toenail on my right foot (that I had a feeling would fall off) is only attaced 1/4 of the way.  I had pulled away a callous that had built up on that toe and lo and behold, it release 3/4 of the edges of my toenail along with it.  It doesn’t hurt but I have it secured with a bandaid because I don’t want it to be snagged off.

I talked with some of our doctors that were out on the floor and they demanded to see my foot as much as I pleaded and begged them not to make me take my sock off because it is quite the ugly sight.  Inevitably, I let them see, polishless, yucky and all and they promptly informed me that I needed to see a podiatrist.  Well, I was in luck.  One of our first assist doctors during surgeries has a son that is a podiatrist just a couple of blocks away so I quickly called him and made an appointment.  My appointment is two weeks from Friday and I have been forbidden to really do anything on my feet but walk.  What?!  You mean no running?  No biking?

Let’s just say, I’m going to be a non-compliant patient with the biking rule.  I don’t think he realizes I just bike to and from work and around downtown.  I’m not out there hardcore biking on a daily basis so I’m going to keep biking to work because my feet and toes never hurt with me biking.  So there!  I have to do something to help me not go stir crazy with being unable to run.

I’m actually wishing this toenail will fall off on it’s own so I don’t have to go see a doctor about it but then again, I need advice on what to do for future marathons and how to treat my feet better as a marathoner.  So please pray that I won’t go crazy from only being able to get in minimal activity for the next 2 1/2 weeks.  It’s going to be hard on me, I just know it.

I’ll obviously be keeping you all updated as I figure out what the verdict is in a couple of weeks.  But just so you know, that’s why you won’t see me doing a ton of running, biking and strength training for the next couple of weeks.  Let’s hope I don’t gain 100 pounds with no activity!

Ok, super long post so I must let you go!  I’ll try and blog in the morning.  We have a nurses appreciation reception in the morning and I’ll try to get pictures but it might be hard.

Olé!

I’m so thankful the rest of the day passed by fairly quickly. I ended up not eating my yogurt and granola for a snack because it’s nurses week and we had a poster fair today, complete with pizza.

I resisted for a while but ended up seeing this teensy, tiny piece of pepperoni pizza calling my name so I rescued it.

Little did it know it was going straight into my belly.

Seriously though, it was a super tiny piece and I wish I had a picture but I didn’t think people would appreciate me whipping out my camera to take a picture so I just enjoyed it instead.

Anyway… look who met me at work.

Such a sweet act deserves a reward, right?

“What did you say hubs? Mexican food?Anything you want darling. Your wish is my command.”

Ha. Funny right?

It was actually both of us that were craving some serious Mexican food and we knew we both wouldn’t be able or want to talk sense into the other one about needing to cook at home so the obvious choice was to just go for our craving.

I was happy that we actually biked so we could burn some calories and that my little piece of pizza actually helped me not go overboard with binging on the chips and salsa.

We ordered our usual three tacos.  I had one soft chicken taco and the hubs had two hard tacos.

Love me some chips and salsa.  Key: Break chips into smaller pieces and load as much salsa as you can onto chip for fillers.

I had planned to go for a run tonight but my right big toenail is definitely jacked to the point where I can literally move it and see fluid floating under the nailbed. Not good. So I’ve reluctantly decided to rest from running this week and let my toe heal. I can’t keep pushing it like I have. I’ve been way too stubborn.

So I’ll continue to bike and strength train and hopefully I’ll be back to running by the weekend. Gotta listen to your body, right?

I came home to fix my meals for work tomorrow and eat a little more of my Easter bunny of solid milk chocolate.

The hubs had apparently had some today too!

I took the cleaver to it.  Poor bunny.

Ok, I don’t really feel sorry for it because I got to eat this yummy goodness.

I think I might do some ab exercises tonight before I hit the hay.  I’ve gotta run!  It’s already 9 o’clock and I need to shower, climb in bed and wind down so I can be fast asleep by 10 o’clock!

Did anyone else feel like it was Tuesday instead of Monday?!  I totally did!

Weekend Eating

I’ve discovered something about myself.  I am a total unpredictable eater on the weekends.  I just go with the flow and usually end up with a hodge podge of food for each of my meals.

I guess that’s what is so great about the weekends and days off.  It’s mean to be laid back and relaxed… even when it comes to food.

My dinner was tiny but yet wonderful.

I just listened to what my body was craving and went with it.

A sliced apple with some PB!

And then a treat I’ve been saving since Easter.

My big chocolate bunny from Dinstuhl’s Fine Candy in Memphis, TN.

The hubs had the head plus another big piece I cut for him.

I had the top of the ears.

Poor bunny got massacred.

Such fine chocolate… I miss being in Memphis where we can grab it whenever we want.

Such a random dinner but half of my sub from earlier really did the job of filling me up, along with that fabulous granola bar that Lindsey gave to me try out.

It’s back to work tomorrow.  Boo!  I’ve so enjoyed these last few days off.  At least I’m all packed up for food and ready to go.  Maybe I’ll be able to fall asleep at a decent hour tonight. Let’s hope so.  The weekend seems to always throw off my internal clock a tad.

I’m off to watch the season finale of The Amazing Race!  See you tomorrow!

The Good Wife

I didn’t get in a run or walk today but I did manage to bike 5.5 miles to and from church!  Does that count?  I am definitely running tomorrow night so I’ll get it all done somehow.  Not stressing out… not stressing out… that’s what I keep telling myself.  It’s a busy week ahead before the marathon and I’m striving to staying cool, calm and collected.

Anyway… I got a hankering for granola bars today so I made some of Anne P’s five minute no bake peanut butter granola bars.  If you remember, I made these a little while ago and they crumbled and wouldn’t bind together so I was determined for them to be right this time!  This time I added a little more brown rice syrup and more peanut butter.  I also tossed in some mini semi-sweet chocolate chips for good measure.

The chocolate chips melted upon being mixed but you can still taste it!!  That’s all the matters!

They turned out perfectly!  They binded, didn’t crumble at all, and are wrapped and ready to go for easy grabbing!!

I ended up cleaning up around the house a bit and got ready for church.  A quick bike ride to church, service and then bike ride home it was time to get cracking.  The hubs led worship for both evening services tonight so I wanted a good dinner waiting on him when he got home.

On the menu, rotisserie chicken, sauteed mushrooms and asparagus and a big green leafy salad!

I got to thinking and decided to make chocolate covered strawberries for dessert.

I was quite pleased with myself.  I even made my own balsamic vinaigrette dressing.  Usually the hubs is our chef so I’m trying to get back into cooking more and more when the time allows.

We’re satisfied, everything’s clean and now it’s time to watch some of the Country Music Awards.  I’m not a huge country music fan but my best friend’s husband, David Nail, is up for Single of the Year for his song “Red Light”.  We’re all really proud of him!!  Keeping our fingers crossed for a big win!

Hope you all had a great Sunday!  It’s back to work for the next three days and then it’s off so I can rest, mentally prepare and get prepped for the marathon!  See you tomorrow!

What ingredient would you add into homemade granola bars?

Pure Honey

The Louisville, Bardstown Road, Farmer’s Market wasn’t as big as we had expected.

I think we got there so late they had sold out of a lot of things, unfortunately.  We did walk away with a bear of Pure Honey though. The hubs was happy.

We then headed to Kroger to pick up groceries to last us through the rest of the month. Thankfully we picked up everything we needed and hopefully won’t need to make another trip back until May!

We came home and I had a couple of crackers with red pepper hummus.

A bite of cake ball without the chocolate coating.

We started dipping the cake balls into the chocolate.  One half white chocolate coating and one half milk chocolate coating.

I had a bite of each one after I ate my lunch and I actually think I like the white cake mix and white icing combo better without the chocolate coating on the outside.  We have a few uncoated ones left so I think I’m going to claim those.

For lunch I ate a turkey frank on a whole wheat bun.

I bought these new kettle chips at the store today.  There bags are huge and they were having BOGO so I was all about it!  Especially since I can pronounce all of their ingredients.  Love the all natural ingredients in their chips.

I am debating when I’m going to go for a 7 mile run today.  I feel like there is a mild headache kind of lurking about deciding whether it’s going to stay or go.  So I think I’m going to relax for a couple of hours, let my food digest, catch up on Tivo and see how I feel.  If I don’t get my run in today (which I really want to!) then I’ll definitely go tomorrow.  Countdown begins! 7 days until I am running my first marathon!  I can’t believe it!  I must start mentally preparing…. NOW!

We are going over to a friends house tonight for dessert before we walk a couple of miles down to the Ohio River to watch the fireworks from the bridge for Thunder Over Louisville.  It should be fun.

Alrighty then!  See you friendlies later!!  I’ll have fun pictures later tonight!