Saturday, July 24, 2010

Garden Couscous

I made this for lunch today and had to share because it turned out really well! I'm going to call it Garden Couscous.

Garden Couscous
Couscous with Fresh Veggies

4 servings couscous
2 servings balsamic vinegar
2 medium whole tomato
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1 tsp black pepper
4 tbsps basil
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups asparagus

Cook couscous according to package directions. Use 1 cup of dry couscous.
Steam asparagus for ~8 minutes or until it is at desired tenderness. Chop tomatoes and basil.

After couscous is cooked, combine with asparagus, basil, and tomato. Add olive oil, vinegar, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper to taste. Toss to mix well. Makes 4 servings.

One serving is 280 calories, 8 grams of fat, 7.5 g of fiber, and 13 g of protein.



OMG it's hot! Today it's super humid and over 90 degrees, so there will be no running today. I will be doing some kind of circuit training from the comfort of my air conditioned living room!

Week 2 of training has gone well. My "challenge" run this week was an interval run. I started with a 1 mile warmup, then I moved on to 1 mile at 8:30 min/mile, followed by 1/2 mile jog, then repeat. I finished it up with a 1 mile jog at the end to cool down. I have to say, I was a bit nervous about this one! I am only slowly starting to realize that I am physically capable of running faster than a 10 minute mile. It's super fun actually! It really has invigorated me. I was getting to a point where my runs/workouts weren't stress relieving anymore, but when I push myself and reach new heights, I love the way that feels! So all in all, I am really enjoying this! I have a 6 mile run this weekend which will most likely occur before 7 AM tomorrow. It's going to be a hot one again!

In other news, I was chosen as a tester for a new website: It's going to be an online personal trainer of sorts, and it'll be focused on balancing cardio and lifting (from what I can gather). So far I've built a profile that says I want to work out 5 days per week, 3 of those being lifting. I specified fat burning as my goal and 1 hour as my total time, and it spit out some weight routines that I'll be trying next week. I'll let you know how they go!

Hope everyone is having a happy and healthy weekend!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Week 1 of New Training Program

I started out the first of 13 weeks of training for a half marathon in Hartford on October 9 (or maybe the 8th???). I'm really excited because I have definitely kept up my fitness since the full marathon in May! In the past, it used to feel like a struggle when I got on a treadmill and ran between 5.5 mph and 6.0 mph. This week, I did a slow jog on Tuesday for a total distance of 2 miles, and the speed I used was 5.8 mph. I hardly felt it! I was so excited!

On Thursday I did a tempo run, which was 1 mile slow to warmup, then 3 miles at a 9 min per mile pace, and then 1 mile to cool down. My headphones broke right before I started running, so I had to do it in complete silence on a treadmill. UGH. Happy to report I did it and it felt awesome! I wasn't even sore on Friday!! Woo hoo! I think the yoga and the lifting program the trainer put together for me are working! I am well on my way to a sub-2 hour half marathon!

I have to run a slow 6 miles tomorrow, and I'm going to get up at the crack of dawn to do it. We have a heat advisory and it's going to be 95 at the height of the day, so I think I'll be trying to head out my door by 6:30 at the very latest.

Hope everyone is having a happy and healthy weekend!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Girl's Gotta Run!

So I cannot believe that the summer is going by so quickly! I just noticed today that:

1. I've been working at my job for a month already!
2. I am only 3 months from my half marathon.

Whoa! I haven't signed up for the race yet, but I think I will with my next paycheck. I've been doing my yoga and lifting, and I've been running a few days a week as well. It's looking like my natural pace is 9 min per mile on good days and 9.5 min per mile on slow days. I'll take it! I still haven't splurged on my HRM/GPS combo but I might in the coming weeks. I'm turning 30 on July 28, so perhaps that will be my gift to myself!!!

I hope everyone else is having a wonderful healthy day! My workout today was a 10 minute jog for a warmup (6 mph), then one set of my circuit. I then did 10 min of running at 6.5 mph, then another set in my circuit. I finished up with 10 min on the treadmill at 6.5 - 7.0 mph, and of course one final run through the circuit. It felt great!!!

Stay cool if you're in the crazy heat in the northeast! There is no reason to go out running in this weather! Tomorrow I plan to do a Shaun T's INSANITY workout in the morning before work.

Be happy and be healthy!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

My Gym Workout

So for the last 4 weeks, I've been back in a gym and it's been a nice change! I'm not used to having all the equipment available to me. It's especially nice to have weights! My weights at home are only 5 lb and 8 lb so it is great to be able to challenge myself with heavier weights. The other great thing is that my employer is really supportive of healthy living so we get a lot of great benefits. One of these was a personally written program from one of the trainers. We went over my goals and she put together a circuit for me. I told her my goals were to run a faster half marathon and to do an unassisted pullup. So this is what she has me doing:

1. Step-ups with Weights - step up with right leg on a bench while holding weights, then step left foot up to join; I use 12 pound weights and do a set of 12.
2. Tricep dips using the bench
3. Clean and Press using 12 lb weights
4. Assisted Pullup - right now I use the machine to assist me with 90 lbs of weight. Slowly but surely I'll reduce that until I can do a pullup supporting the weight all on my own!
5. Crunch with Legs Up and Using a Medicine Ball - I use a 10 lb medicine ball and keep my hands in the air above my head. On the "down" part of the exercise, I extend my arms behind my head so the ball hits the ground.
6. Leg Curls (on the machine) - so far I use 85 lbs
7. Walking Lunges - I don't use weights on this and I try to keep only one foot on the ground at a time. I go by distance but it usually turns into 12 lunges on each side.

I do this whole thing 3 times through. I've been throwing 10 min of jogging in before the first set and between each set so I get in my cardio. It's been fun! I start my half marathon training in a couple weeks. Fun fun!

Hope everyone is having a happy and healthy summer!