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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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A Rare Moment These Days

My Jimmy John’s was A-H-MAZING!  I still wish they’d get some wheat sub bread but I’ll settle for white bread, especially when it’s free.

I was seriously tempted to go eat a third sub but right when I got up to go grab one, I had two new patients that needed to be triaged.  So it worked out that while I was triaging them, my stomach ended up registering that it was fully satisfied.

I did end up snacking on an orange around 4 or so to tide me over until community group tonight.

Y’all know what Thursday night means!  Community Group- which means there is usually dessert served… which means, I get a fruit dinner because it’s still Lent!  On the menu for tonight: A Granny Smith apple, sliced banana and grapes.  With 3/4 tbsp. of peanut butter of course.

I really do love my fruit dinners!  And the peanut butter makes it ridiculously addicting!

Alright, to explain the title of my blog.  I haven’t divulged this on the blog yet but if you know me then you know what I’m about to say and explain.  My parents got divorced after 29 years of marriage on June 24, 2009.  My dad re-married on August 1, 2009.  You can probably guess why my dad felt like he could know some other woman so well to get married that quickly after divorcing my mom.  But we won’t get into that. Think what you want.

I grew up being EXTREMELY close with my family.  We took many family vacations, had family game night every week, laughed together and spent ridiculous amounts of time together.  My mom is my best friend and I was such a daddy’s girl.  My dad is a physician in Memphis and worked 9 jobs (literally) when I was growing up (he still does) and had long hours.  I never held that against him because he was my daddy and I knew he was working so hard to provide us with eveything we needed or even wanted.  I rode the divorce rollercoaster with my parents for 2 1/2 years and it was brutal.  I never, in a million years, would’ve thought my parents would’ve gotten a divorce.  I grew up in church, my dad was a deacon, we want on mission trips as a family, served in soup kitchens, etc.  You just wouldn’t have thought we would’ve ended up being a split family.  But we are.  And every once in a while, I wake up from the dream of my parents divorce and realize it’s a reality.  Enter today.  I was sitting there at work and a random memory hit me and it was all she wrote. My mind ran to all the different memories I have as a child and up until last June and all I felt like doing was crawling into bed and bawling my eyes out while wishing it could go back to the way it was.  My childhood home is up for sale, my mom had to move, my dad is re-married with two new children (in addition to my baby, 22 year old, brother), and I’ve been floating.  Floating through this foreign world that I have not yet come to grips with, wondering if one day the Lord will grant me with amnesia so I could forget this divorce even happened.  I have discovered that running is my escape… I don’t think when I run.  I can just run with a clear head and pound out any stress that’s in my body.  It’s the perfect cure because I’m definitely not going the medication route if I don’t have to.  I don’t feel depressed on a regular basis at all. I feel like I lead a very fulfilling life.  I’m secure in my marriage and myself but some days are just really hard.  The rug that I stood on for 24 years has been pulled out from under me and I have to get used to standing on a different one.

I’m so thankful for the Lord, my husband, my mom and my friends that have always been there to pray, encourage, hug, listen and love me through every stage of grief there is.  And I am truly thankful for the sweet memories I have of my family together and will cling to those for the rest of my life but will always look back with a bittersweet taste being left in my mouth.  I think I’ve had a harder time lately because my dad and I don’t speak anymore.  We haven’t spoken in more than a month and that has been his decision. He completely has changed from the man I once knew as my daddy and it’s a hard pill to swallow.  Who, what, when, how?!  So many questions left unanswered.  So here I am, baring my all, to you, my readers, so thank you for bearing with me.  I promised to be honest on this blog and I meant it for every facet of my life because I know that if I’ve gone through feelings like this, someone else must have or will go through them too.  We aren’t alone…

But just about as quick as the sadness came, it was gone and I’m thankful.  The Lord is sufficient to ease my pain and that’s just what He did.  Know that if you are hurting, perpetually or intermittently, I feel your hurt!  I just felt a prodding to share this today and I hope that it helped encourage one of you readers out there who might be hurting too.  And thank you all for letting me be the person I am and feeling like I can be open and honest about my life.

Until tomorrow… Good night.

What have you used in your life to get past difficult moments?  Prayer, encouragement from friends, running, etc.

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Movie Night

Today turned out to be completely different than I expected. Well, first of all, I ended up being ready for sleep at 10:15 last night so I’m getting closer to my 10 p.m. goal. Slowly but surely.

I really did feel more rested today, even with just a few minutes of extra sleep.

I got pulled to a completely different unit at work today and it was actually a nice change of pace.

I ended up eating a banana for breakfast instead of my usual cereal. A nice change of routine.

Lunch couldn’t have come quick enough. I was so hungry by 11 a.m.! But I was able to hold off until noon because one of our anesthesiologist had lunch delivered from a Medittaranian restaurant, Shiraz, in town. Ridiculously insane good.

My pita had a spread of hummus, chipotle sauce, loaded with roasted tomatoes, onion, zucchini, squash and two small pieces of chicken.

I also had a piece of mahi on a bed of lettuce and veggie salad that consisted of onion, cucumber, tomatoes and herbs.

All together.

I went back for unpictured seconds of the veggie salad and a couple slices of the roasted tomatoes topped with a little hummus and chipotle sauce.

That surely filled me up for the rest of the day so I didn’t eat again until “dinner”.

One of our friends received several free sneak peek movie tickets to see “The Bounty Hunter” featuring Gerard Butler and Jennifer Anniston.

I ate my “dinner” at the movie theater.

The hubs brought me a sliced apple, banana and grapes.

I ate it with 1.5 tbsps. of peanut butter.

And halfway through the movie I ate my trail mix I brought along. Dry roasted almonds, craisins and dark chocolate covered pieces of plum.

The movie was cute.  A definite renter for sure!  I don’t know if I’d  spend >$20 to see it in the theaters but I would definitely rent to watch at home.  I just love both of them!!

Well I’m finally home and it’s definitely past my bedtime of 10 p.m. but hopefully I’ll fall asleep in no time. My mood has been off kilter lately so I’m trying to figure out why. Hrmph. I don’t like feeling this way. Maybe tomorrow I’ll feel back to my normal self.

What time do you like to be in bed by?

No Lunch Day

Before I get to why I titled this post “No Lunch Day” I’ll tell you about my morning.  My morning started off by me crawling out of bed.  My body was so not ready to get up at 5:30 a.m.!  This time change has messed me up!!  But I got going shortly after being awake and headed into work.  I was hungry as soon as I woke up but I ended up holding off eating breakfast until 9 a.m.  I think I’m going to try and start waking up around 5 a.m. on the days I work and making a green monster and spending time with the hubs and starting my day off right.  We’ll see if that ever happens.  😉

I had my favorite new combo of cereal: Kashi H2H Honey Toasted and Special K Granola.  A match made in heaven.

Before I knew it things were kicked into high gear on our floor and with my patients so I didn’t stop to eat lunch until 1 p.m.  Thank goodness our manager had ordered us lunch, otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to eat at all.  Since we were unable to actually take an official lunch “break”, we called it a ‘No Lunch Day’, hence the reason for the title.

I didn’t get any pictures of lunch because we were that busy and I thought cramming food down my throat was a little more important at the moment.  Eat while you can when you’re a nurse.

Our manager ordered us Jimmy John’s platters.  I had 3 small pieces of subs.  One veggie, one tuna and one ham.  I still can’t decide which one I liked best.  I think they’d be ten times tastier if they had whole wheat sub bread available for the platters.

After an hour, I was still hungry so I had another small piece of the ham.

No snack for me today because those 4 small pieces held me over until I got home.

I got home and decided that sent I didn’t get home until almost 8 that I would need to do some strength training tonight instead of running.  I shall run tomorrow night, for sure.

I did a number of different style push-ups (standard, military, diamond, decline and wide legged), pull-ups (wide grip, close grip over handed and close grip under handed), a variety of other back exercises with weights and ab exercises.  I worked it hard and feel great!!  After that hard workout, I deserved dinner!!

On the menu: Grilled chicken, asparagus and a sweet potato.

I tell no lie: This is only the second time in my life that I’ve had a sweet potato. I think I’d prefer a regular potato in the end but I think it’s a good change and healthier too.  Maybe we’ll try sweet potato fries next!!

I ate half of the chicken and asparagus and my whole sweet potato (since it was a smaller tater) and packed all that up, plus half of another sweet potato for a future lunch at work this week!  I love leftovers!!

That’s about it on my end.  I’m needing to wind down for bed and get rested to hit the craziness of the baby factory again tomorrow!!    I might see some fruit in my future before I hit the hay.  But what’s new?!  Hope you all had a great day back into the week!

What is some food that you have tried lately that is new to you?  And did you like it?

Water Logged

Thank you all who commented to encourage me.  It surely lifted my spirits and helped me realize how awesome 14.5 really is!!  You all are the best!

After my lunch post I climbed in a hot bubble bath and ended up staying there for 1 1/2 hours.  I ended up finishing “The Skinnygirl Dish” and enjoying my limbs feeling nice and relaxed in the water.

I’m sure I was nice and water logged by the time I got out but my body felt so much better!!!  I’m thinking that 4.5 mile run will happen tomorrow at some point.  I’m hoping to have my body feel almost back to normal after a good night’s rest so I can redeem myself with my run.

After catching up on many food blogs, I decided it was time to start dinner.  Now as you all know, I’m not usually the cook around here.  The hubs usually has dinner made for me when I come home from work or after I get in from a night run so I didn’t want to be lame and do something I normally would in the past like a sandwich, chips, salad, etc.

I settled on baked marinated salmon topped with sauteed mushrooms placed on a bed of baby organic spring mix, shredded carrots and feta cheese.

I didn’t need dressing due to the salmon being so moist.

I started out placing my marinated salmon fillet in foil and baking it for about 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

I sauteed my mushrooms.  I drizzled them with EVOO and topped them with fresh cracked pepper and salt and a tad of garlic salt for added flavor and cooked in the skillet on medium heat, stirring and flipping constantly to avoid burning.

Before cooking:

I figured that part of the Italian style bread that I brought home last night from dinner would be an appropriate carb to add.  I put some EVOO in a ramekin and topped with fresh cracked black pepper for dipping and warmed up the bread in the oven.

Now everything together!

Ok maybe not everything… forgot the mushrooms!

And I might have had one or two more pieces of bread. 😉

I think I did pretty good if I do say so myself.

It was definitely worth it to take the time and effort to prepare a home cooked meal, even if I was just cooking for me.

I might see some fruit in my future but for now I’m pretty content.

Can’t wait to wake up in the morning and see how my body feels!  Praying for a good opportunity to get that run in!!

I hope you all have had a great Saturday!  I know that my weekend will get 100% better once my hubs gets back home tonight.  I can’t wait!!

What’s a good meal that you’ve made for yourself lately?

Carbo Loading & Girls Night

Well, to my surprise, the hubs left the computer with me so here I am blogging after my girls night out!!  This should be quick because I need to get up and run 19 miles tomorrow.

I’ll start with pictures with some of the girls from tonight.

Scarlett, Beth, Me and Callie

Beth and I

Scarlett, Beth and I

You wouldn’t have guessed it since I only got pictures on my end of the table but we had 21 people show up.  That’s a great round of people for our first work outing.

Anyway…. I ended up completely changing my mind about what I was going to eat.

I did end up eating the Italian bread… a few several pieces with olive oil.

Ebony, Beth and I ended up splitting a large (much too big for us three) whole wheat supreme pizza.  I had two slices.

I almost reached up for a third but decided against it since I had several pieces of bread.

I ended up taking home a loaf and a half of the Italian bread and 4 leftover slices of the supreme pizza so Chad can have that for a super late dinner tomorrow night when he comes home.

I have no idea what I’m going to eat for lunch and dinner tomorrow night but I’ll figure it out I guess.  I’ll need something good and full of protein tomorrow after my run.

Alright friends, I’m off to bed (and feed the kitty babies and hopefully cuddle with them)!  Pray that I’ll get my booty out of bed early in the morning so I can get my run over with early in the day so I can veg and recover from my run.

Wish me luck!!!  I’m hoping to run around 10-11 minute/mile pace tomorrow and not my usual 12-13 minute/mile pace.

Night night readers.  See you in the morn’!

Long Day…

Today just seemed to drag on.  Does anyone else feel that way about today in particular?   I don’t know what it was but it seemed like tonight would never get here.  But it’s here and I’m thankful now.

I was the c-section queen at work today so I ran around the operating room like a busy little bee.

I finally got to eat some breakfast around 10 a.m.

Wheat puffed cereal and Special K Granola mixture.  Not too bad but the wheat puffed cereal is like dry, un-sweet sugar smacks.

Not but a couple of hours later, I stole the chance to eat lunch before I missed out.

A big green salad just like yesterday.

I got so busy with more c-sections so I ended up not eating my pear that I had brought and ended up eating a fruit/granola dinner at community group instead.  The hubs brought me a sliced red apple and banana.  I paired it with 1.5 tablespoons of peanut butter.

I had brought a homemade peanut butter granola (crumbles bar) bar with me but didn’t take a picture since we had already started our discussion.  But it sure was tasty.  I can’t wait to keep experimenting with perfecting my own homemade granola bar recipe!!

I’m hope and headed to shower and then bed.  I’m scheduled to work tomorrow but I have a funny feeling that I’ll be put on call.  I don’t really care either way what happens.  I’d rather work because the hubs is leaving town until Saturday evening so I don’t prefer to chill out by myself.  But at least I have a dinner with a lot of people from work planned for tomorrow night at an Italian grill that I’ve never been to before.  It’ll be great carbo loading for my 19 mile run on Saturday!!!

Alright friends, I’m off to let the sandman do its thing!  Hope you all had a fantastic Thursday!  Get ready!  The weekend is almost here!!

What would you do with a weekend away from your other half?!

Called In…

Of course having to be on call would turn out to be that I would be called in.  Within 30 minutes of me posting about breakfast, I was called into work.  I hadn’t yet started to eat my lunch so I grabbed it and took it with me and ended up eating it at 3 p.m. instead.  Oh well.  At least I got to eat.

A big salad topped with the usual and I added some grilled chicken this time.  Yum!!! I loved this salad today!  I had some more chicken and asparagus left over from last night so I ate the rest of that as a side.

Even though I ate lunch super late, I decided I need my mandarin I packed as a snack around 6 p.m. because we had another commitment at church for me to run to right after work.

I figured that might hold me over until almost 9 p.m. when we would be able to get home and eat dinner.

I was starving by the time I got home so I quickly hurried around the kitchen and helped the hubs get all the ingredients ready for our panini’s!!!

A yummy ham and cheese panini for me with the hubs special sauce.  Mmm… mmm… good.

A little hummus and crackers on the side?  Yes please!

And some grapes for afterwards.

It’s been a good day all in all… now I’m ready to get into bed and get some sleep so I can wake up and head to work tomorrow.  Tomorrow is another long day with a 12 hour shift and then Community Group afterwards.  Hope you all had a great hump day!  See you tomorrow!

What are your favorite salad toppings?