Blog Meetup And Happy Yoga Feelings!

Today’s Happy Note: Alicia Keys’ song Try Sleeping With A Broken Heart — it’s just got a really soothing but also penetrating rhythm and oddly makes me really happy. ¬†I’m listening to it on repeat. ūüôā

I swapped today’s eight hilly miles for tomorrow’s rest/yoga because it was blazingly hot/human today! ¬†I did walk about four-ish miles over the course of the day and took a really nice advanced flow yoga class at my favorite studio.

Part of my walk today was with Maggie (Say Yes To Salad)!¬†¬†Lynn of The Actors’s Diet was in town and we had a lovely little meet-up with some of my favorite bloggers, including Ada (NYCollegeEats) and Gabriela (Une Vie Saine). ¬†We had The Lite Choice then strolled then chatted at a new to me cafe where I had a tasty orange carrot juice.

I was having so much fun I never got a group picture! ¬†Above is Ada, Lynn, and reader Danielle. ¬†I love meeting fellow bloggers because we already have something in common and they are almost always sweet, kind, and caring. It’s sort of like you already know one another and genuinely care for one another. ¬†Blog friends are real friends! ūüôā

I loved getting to know everyone better today. ¬†Gabriela and I have gotten to see each other several times now and Ada and I ran the ultra together! I had not met anyone else previously. ¬†I think blogging had really helped expand my social circle, in a good way. ¬†If you’re a blogger (or a reader!), have you made new friends through blogging?

I had a really nice moment in the cafe: I couldn’t decide between an iced tea or a juice. ¬†I had a very tiny appetite at lunch and was starting to feel hungry again (it was late afternoon). ¬†At first I thought to myself “I should just have a plain unsweetened iced tea; why do I deserve to consume extra calories at this time of day for no reason?” ¬†But then I said to myself, damn it, I want a carrot-orange juice. ¬†Not only is freshly squeezed juice full of amazing vitamins and nutrients, it tastes good and I wanted some sustenance. ¬†So there. ¬†Take that, crazy brain.

Sometimes I feel like my silly brain gets in he way of just letting me live. ¬†I am learning how to let go of being so obsessive about everything. ¬†I find that my body fits into its natural size and shape perfectly when I do the least obsessing. ¬†Yoga has taught me that. ¬†I went into class tonight feeling sad and angry (not for any particular reason — they were just random moods) and came out feeling calm again. ¬†I love that my practice constantly reminds me to do the best I can — and that I can only do my best. ¬†Miracles can happen, too, though. ¬†Yoga has given me a nice balance and perspective.

Okay, no more seriousness. ¬†I promise! ¬†Onto some rather delicious eats from today…

This is an almost-empty container of fage 2% with about 2 tablespoons of sunflower seed butter, a handful of grapes and a tablespoon of flax peanut butter. ¬†I have decided that sunflower seed butter and I are in love. ¬†It’s like frosting only better. ¬†I had another several spoonfuls straight from the jar after this bowl. ¬†It has this creamy, full, earthy flavor. ¬†It does sort of taste “healthy”, but in a good way, I think — like raw tofu. ¬†But then again, not everyone loves raw tofu.

I get the weirdest health-food cravings sometimes: in addition to raw tofu, I also crave plain steamed broccoli, spoonfuls of sunflower seed butter, avocados, brown rice, salmon, spinach, and plain nuts.  My body really does know exactly what it needs most of the time.  I like that about myself.

What are your “health-food” cravings? ¬†Or junk food cravings! I don’t judge!

This just might be the best dinner SIAB (Smoothie In A Bowl) I have ever made. ¬†It consisted of a cup of vanilla soy milk, a whole lotta ice, half a banana, a scoop of vanilla whey/soy protein, cinnamon, and half an avocado. ¬†Topped with TJ’s honey roasted nuts (aka crack). ¬†The avocado/vanilla/cinnamon combo is amazing. ¬†Move over sunflower seed butter. ¬†I have a new lover.

I’m feeling surprisingly content right now considering the number of things I have on my mind. ¬†Hmmmm. ¬†I like having a clear head, I suppose — it’s a good feeling.

Goodnight friends!  I hope you all have a most happy Friday.

And thank you for your sweet comments/thoughts yesterday. ūüôā

Transition Stress/Long Run/Meat

Today’s Happy Note: My day involved plenty of chocolate. ¬†Always a good thing.

Mental Health Note: Transitions, of any sort, are always stressful and tricky for me. ¬†At this point in my life, I have come to accept that, and instead of trying to pretend that the stress isn’t there (and thereby making it much, much worse), I just acknowledge it and do my best to soothe myself. ¬†I find moving around — which, unfortunately, happens a lot in college — not just physically exhausting, but emotionally draining as well. ¬†I get attached to places. ¬†I go back and forth between NYC and Michigan (and sometimes Canada) quite frequently. ¬†I am in NYC right now, but have to move back into my dorm. ¬†I’m also making a shift from full-time worker to full-time student and part-time worker. ¬†My life patterns are not all that different during the school year, which helps to ease my mind. ¬†I know that I will still eat oats with nut butter or smoothies for breakfast. ¬†I know that I will find some time in the day to squeeze my run in and that I will make time for friends and life outside of school.

All this is to say that the stress is creeping up on me already — I can see and feel it. It sort of drapes its way around me and sits on my heart and body like a heavy scarf. ¬†I move into my dorm room on Saturday and start classes Tuesday. ¬†I have been mentally preparing myself. ¬†One thing I find very helpful is finding room for extra sleep during my day/night. ¬†Stress often leaves me sleepy-tired, and if I can either sleep 9 hours at night or 7-8 hours at night with a nap in the late afternoon, I am much happier and calmer. ¬†Other things that help include lots of self-care (doing stuff like painting my nails, getting a massage, strolling in the park and looking at the flowers, etc.), reaching out to people I love, and eating delicious but clean foods.

How do you deal with life transitions — physically or emotionally or occupationally? ¬†How do you relieve the stress/anxiety/tension? I love consistency, but I understand that, for the next few years, my life will not necessarily be straightforward. ¬†I am learning how to find the excitement in this.

I got my run in this evening!  It was way too hot at the beginning, but eventually cooled down with a nice breeze. I did ten miles and actually felt really great during it.  I held about a 10 minute per mile pace, but was probably around 9:30 at some points.  I feel like I may finally be back up to pre-hospital strength!  Yay!  I also lifted weights for a quick 30 minutes.

Long run eats:

I’m not showing everything because I think it’s boring. ¬†But I have done a good job keeping track. ¬†And I don’t have a picture since I only just made it, but I am currently eating a delicious chocolate banana smoothie with TJ’s dark chocolate in a nut butter jar. ¬†Nut butter jars make everything better. Seriously, I would be so thrilled if I got my Christmas and birthday presents in (clean) nut butter jars from now on. ¬†It would be so cute! ¬†I’m pretty sure my relatives already think I’m a weird foodie though, so I probably will go ahead and *not* make that request…

Lunch was kinda epic: steamed carrots/yellow squash, green grapes/cherry mix, and a turkey/cheddar/avocado wrap on a TJ’s multigrain tortilla. ¬†I have a lunchtime sandwich fear, for some odd reason. ¬†But on longer run days, I find it helpful to have a sandwich for the extra carbs/calories. ¬†It works out perfectly fine because, when eating more earlier in the day, I eat less in the evenings.

Awesome new snack! ¬†TJ’s (do you see a TJ’s them here? ¬†Hmmmm….) peanut butter crunchy granola bar. ¬†This was a tad sweet but definitely tasty.

Dinner involved more meat — apple chicken sausage, in honor of my sister (it’s one of her favorite foods, but I also really like it as well) with a GIANT salad of romaine, peppers, avocado, and TJ’s peanut vinaigrette (LOVE). ¬†I had okra fries a la Meghann on the side. ¬†They were actually really good. ¬†When I cut up veggies like carrots, squash, or, in this case, okra, into fry form and bake them, I am not intending them as a fry replacement. ¬†I just like roasted veggies. ¬†But these were actually legitimately fry-like! ¬†I coated them in salt, pepper, and EVOO and baked at 400 for about 30-ish (maybe 40?) minutes. ¬†Okra=my new friend. ¬†Oh, and if you are wondering why it’s dark in the above photo that’s because it’s purple okra! ¬†I love veggies in fun colors.

Hello, okra.  You can come over for dinner anytime you want.  Have you had okra?  Do you like it?

Meaty talk:

I don’t eat a lot of meat. ¬†But I think it can be a very healthy part of a diet and I will probably never go vegetarian. I do believe in ethical, moderate meat consumption. ¬†I get as much of it as I can from the farmer’s market or other local, natural, and/or organic sources. ¬†I just realized, while posting, that I had meat twice today! Turkey at lunch and chicken sausage at dinner. ¬†And you know what? ¬†I feel great. The protein and fat really work wonders for me.

I like all kinds of protein sources.  My favorites: salmon, shrimp, steak, turkey, tofu, lentils, black beans, tempeh, whole grains, greek yogurt, veggie burgers, cottage cheese, nut butters, and certain protein powders.

Your fave protein sources?

Bedtime for this stressed chica. ¬†Goodnight friends! ūüôā

All Grown Up

Today’s Happy Note: An excursion to the new Trader Joe’s in Chelsea! ¬†It was awesome; spacious and calm and totally the opposite of the Union Square Trader Joe’s. ¬†Not frenetic and crazed. ¬†Loved it.

Pretty good day. ¬†Busy but not overwhelmingly so — those are my favorite kind of days. ¬†I won’t lie though: I may be 20 years old, a senior in college, and holding down two “real” jobs, but there are moments when I wish I was twelve again, reading in my backyard and running through the sprinkler all summer long. ¬†I used to have the house all to myself everyday of summer from when I was about twelve on. ¬†I would make brownies, reread the whole Harry Potter series, and dance outside when it rained.

I kinda want that back.  Being an adult is hard.

Today started with a brunch for Second Job, which ended yesterday.  I feel really sad about it actually.  Organizing and overseeing within the framework of a non-profit has been something I have truly fallen in love with.  My students are my babies, my coworkers are heroic.

Also: I love huevos rancheros.

Cookie the size of my head.

That is oats topped with chocolate and peanut butter. ¬†I know many bloggers have said this before so it kinda isn’t original but: PB and chocolate is my favorite food combination in the entire world. No questions asked.

Other favorite food combinations: hummus and cheddar cheese, carrots and almond butter, mango and coconut, salmon and asparagus.

Your favorite food combos?

I ended the day with a nice little workout: 20 minutes of arm strength and a 6 mile run with lots of hills.  Currently watching movies, snuggling in bed, and thinking of fun things to do this weekend.  Any suggestions?

I need an Adventure!  This is my first free weekend in a while.

What are your plans?

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