Tag Archives: exercise

New Yoga Endeavors

I went to a 90-minute “Power Yoga Flow” session at a new yoga studio downtown this morning – PYP Studio in State College.

Afterwards, I rewarded myself with this.

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But more on that after my Yoga recap:

It was insanely hard – maybe harder than a running my half-marathon in April. I hadn’t been expecting such a high intensity class, so I found myself utterly unable to put my best effort into most poses. Such things, at least for me, require mental prep time.

For at least the first hour, all I could think was, “these people are insane,” and “I’m never coming back here again.”

I had never been to a yoga class set up like this one. It started out with everyone in child’s pose, and the instructor, a tiny British lady with a fierce voice, gave kind of an opening “sermon.” Or a dramatic monologue maybe? She spoke about how we constantly reach outside of ourselves, searching, wanting, trying for more, when all we need is right here in the present. She challenged us to stop seeking approval from other people and to appreciate the perfect, innocent human being buried inside of us amidst the daily craziness. Throughout the session’s resting poses, she always came back to this theme, reiterating her points, and dramatizing them in the context of our movements.

During savasana at the end, which I enjoyed so much in my complete exhaustion, she played “Let it Be” by the Beatles. Tacky, yes. But still somehow in line with everything else she was doing.

Dave, of course, said all of this sounded terrible when I told him about it at brunch. And yes, it was definitely different and intense. But during the last 30 minutes of the class, as the exhaustion had broken me down enough, I discovered new, refreshing thoughts within myself. One of them was that it makes complete sense to me that in a “church-like” format, in which we challenge the mind to center itself and connect with its core, we would challenge the body at the same time to go to its limits.

So then, after yoga, I picked up Dave and we went to Pine Grove Mills, which is about 5 minutes from our house, to try the new breakfast place that opened there on Monday, Naked Egg Cafe. A co-worked told me about it yesterday, and I was so excited when I looked at their menu and discovered they have salmon Eggs Benedict!

In light of my new plan to stop drinking coffee, I ordered a pot of Irish Breakfast tea. By the time our food arrived, I had finished the entire pot, about five cups or so, because we waited for about 45 minutes!!! Sure, they recently opened and the place was packed, but waiting that long for breakfast is not acceptable in my opinion. When we got the food, we couldn’t believe the small portions. I paid $12.99 for the salmon benedict and there wasn’t really as much smoked salmon under the egg as I would have expected. Plus, why wouldn’t they serve some sort of potatoes on the side? Pretty disappointing. It tasted good, but not great. On the plus side, the food is all local. That’s why I wanted to like the place so much. We’re thinking we’ll give them one more chance and come earlier in the morning when it’s not as crowded and order something else. But it’s still a bummer because no other place in town that I know of makes salmon benedicts or even has a breakfast menu with smoked salmon on it.

Enough complaining. After brunch, we went to the Farmer’s Market to stock up on some organic produce. I bought eggplants, onions, tomatoes, and parsley. We also each bought a pastry from an Amish woman, plus I had a macaroon and Dave a gluten-free brownie. Splurge alert.

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Filed under eating out, gluten-free, seafood, yoga

A Case of the Summers

Woah, I’ve apparently been on a blogging hiatus for a whole week now. That’s mostly because our kitchen hasn’t been its usual self, as in a place of inspiration, but rather a battlefield of take-out boxes and dirty dishes. You know how it is – a trip out of town, an unpleasant stomach virus, and a crazy work schedule can do quite a bit of damage. Plus, it’s June, my absolute favorite month of the year, and I’m having a hard time following routines and pursuing long-term goals right now. I want to be outside, soaking up the sun, smelling the freshness everywhere, and living in the moment.

To add to all that, we’re going out of town again this Wednesday on a driving trip to the Carolinas. I’ve never been and am excited to add four new states to my list of currently 39 – Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. We’re meeting grad school friends in Wilmington for a conference and also just vacationing. I can’t wait to swim in the warm Atlantic. Also, I have some great vegan/vegetarian restaurants I’m eying up for eating, so the blog will thrive off this trip as well.

Right now, I’m sitting on our balcony enjoying this perfect, non-humid Monday night with a glass of red wine, not thinking about much of anything. So here are some pictures I did manage to take in the last week.

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I made this quickie spinach salad to eat next to sick Dave last week. We watched “The Wave” on Netflix while I ate – seriously a movie you should watch, and I’m not just saying that because it’s German.

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Quinoa spinach salad I made for our Memorial Day cook-out with friends. Here is the recipe. The dressing is amazing.

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Memorial Day dinner. I’ve been eating meat again outside of home on occasion, which I have mixed feelings about. My desire to avoid it has taken ethical dimensions as well as health-related ones, so eating it doesn’t make me feel great. I think I need to get over the need to put a label on my diet and just be happy that I have very healthy habits 95% of the time. We shall see.

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Dave and I roasting marshmallows for our Memorial Day s’mores.

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Oh, and the best of all: our friend Mark makes the best cocktails – this one had rum, coke, crushed basil, and maybe other things.

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Dave’s mid-week dinner creation: Barley soup. Really good and really well-spiced.

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Thursday night, we had dinner at Gigi’s, a restaurant in our neighborhood that’s trying to be up-scale, but failing, while we still appreciate its tappas menu and outdoor seating. For desert, we split a pear crisp with vanilla ice cream. Quite delightful.

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Friday night, Dave made green bean casserole. On the balcony, paired with a wheat ale, it made for the perfect weekend starter.

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Saturday breakfast. I felt like I had to compensate Dave for coming on a 3-mile run with me. Poor guy, his allergies were really kicking in, and he was sneezing all the way through. Claritin to the rescue (at least until we find a more natural remedy)! I made coffee, scrambled eggs in almond milk, avo slices, and toasted whole wheat bread with Daiya Cheeze, tomato slices, and scallions.

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After breakfast, Saturday was all about the lake, reading, and soaking up the sun. At nearly 90 degrees, we also needed some good sunblock. But regardless, the 3ish hours we spent here, swimming, playing Yahtzee, and relaxing were glorious.

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Sunday breakfast: banana pancakes with Earth Balance and Pennsylvania maple syrup. I also made some crepes-like creations, which I rolled around Nutella and ate without prioritizing photography.

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Today’s lunch (vegetarian wrap and sweet potato fries), courtesy of my co-worker, which we ate while working through lunch-hour during a 9-hour collaborative excel project in the conference room. Fun times!

I have been sticking to my summer work-out routine every day, which has been especially fun due to my new Asics.

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Such great colors. I’m doing a 3-mile run one day and an interval run with weight lifting interspersed on the next. Friday is rest day. Dave has come to my last three work-outs. Yesterday, he challenged me to competitive interval sprints and I lost every time. How does this guy never exercise and still beat me like that?

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Filed under Breakfast, deserts, drinks with dinner, eating out, running

Night-Before-Run Pasta Dinner

It’s Friday and it’s March! I’m so excited to gain more daylight back next weekend and for warmer temperatures.

For now, I’ll have to do with the mid-30s and my high school volleyball training jacket will have to be my constant running companion. It’s perfect for temps from 30 to 55.

We’re going out for drinks tonight, but I wanted to have dinner at home first to make sure I get what I need before my 10-mile run tomorrow. Pasta was my intuitive go-to.

First, I cocked two separate pasta versions: gluten-free penne rigate for Dave and regular spaghetti for me.

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I cooked them in water with some olive oil and salt for 12 minutes. Not that anyone woud be wondering how to make pasta, but just in case  😉

I also made a shrimp, tomato, and kale stir fry.

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Frozen cooked shrimp from Trader Joe’s in olive oil.

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I also added half of an Italian pepper and some fresh parsley that I had sitting around and then seasoned the whole mix with salt and pepper.

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Carb-loading time!

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I had been watching my German soap while cooking and Dave was watching Battlestar Galactica or some non-sense (we are very judgmental of each other’s television preferences), so we decided to be dysfunctional and eat with our respective shows.

I’ve been watching that soap since 1994 and just can’t seem to cut the cord. Episodes are 20 minutes long, so it’s perfect when eating lunch or doing the dishes or doing any other kind of housework. What are your favorite shows to eat to?

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Desert was dark chocolate and peanut butter goodness.

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Such perfection.

Now we’re headed out for drinks, which will mean beer for me to stick to the carb-loading theme.

I’m nervous about trying 10 miles tomorrow. It’s supposed to snow and I hope my mind can get in the running zone. I may as well try to prep food-wise by sticking to what I know works: pasta and beer.

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Filed under dairy-free, deserts, gluten-free, recipes, running, seafood