Chinese Take Out Ginger Broccoli

Do you crave Chinese food as much as I do? There are times I just can’t control myself and have to have it! Especially if I have a cold. The thought of warm soup being delivered to my door brings a smile to my face. It is a rare treat for me to indulge from this pan fried folded menu fantasy.

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INGREDIENTS

1 bag of fresh chopped broccoli

*1 cube of frozen ginger

*1 cube of frozen garlic

1/2 cup water

Combine all ingredients into a microwave safe dish. Microwave steam on high for 2-4 minutes until desired tenderness is achieved. Drain any remanding water from the dish. Lightly toss the steamed broccoli with a splash of Tahini. ENJOY!!!

***One of my favorite kitchen hacks are these frozen herb cubes found in my grocery store frozen food section. At any given moment my freezer holds basil, garlic, and ginger cubes. Only one cube for most recipes is enough. As a single girl making recipes for one, this is a more economical way to always have herbs on hand. The thought of chopping garlic or mincing ginger in the evening doesn’t sound appealing***

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Living the Lifestyle with Fashion, Filming, Friends, and Frozen Pizza Dough

This past week was a busy one that was full of fun! It was another easy week training wise coming off of my last half marathon. The light week came at a great time as the week suddenly became full with work and social activities. This week brought moments of gratitude and thanks that this life of passion I have been envisioning over the past couple years has finally come true. This post is being written as a way to remember and record such a fulfilling week. I am living the life of passion I visualized 3 years ago and have now created.

I was fortunate enough to be a guest at the Trinity Broadcasting Network for an upcoming episode of Joy In Our Town that will air during the holiday season.

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Joy In Our Town @TBN with host Anne-Ferrell Hager Tata

Friday Night has turned into an almost weekly tradition of pizza night at my house. It has become a good way to fuel up for a training run or race the next morning.  My pizza night rotates from the occasional delivery to frozen pizza. But lately I have been constructing my own creations. Trader Joe’s offers a frozen pizza crust and also frozen Naan. Both pack more calories than I would normally like, but on a splurge night of fuel loading, they serve up the right size pizza for me. I can control the toppings I choose for these pies and I stack them high. This week I used some leftover shredded baked chicken, shredded cheese, tomatoes, onions, and garlic.

Fit Founders podcast recording with High Speed Health

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lululemon Fall Fashion Show at Town Center. As if I wasn’t already hooked, the new fall line seems to be cozier and cuter than ever. I am obsessed with these berry crops!

A Free Saturday with no race or football game on the schedule meant time spent with good friends at the Town Point Wine Fest. This non fitness event brought a nice balance and break to round out a full week.

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As I spend this Sunday morning reflecting on the week while I am nestled in my bed with some coffee, I look forward to topping it off with some birthday celebrations for one of my favorite sole sisters later this afternoon.

 

 

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THE ULTIMATE GYM BAG: APERA

Over the past year in my transition into the full time fitness world, I may have traded in my high fashion corporate attire…but I haven’t traded in my love for the perfect bag. I live out of my gym bag more than ever these days. From blogger, business owner, coach, and athlete the contents in my everyday bag are forever growing. At any given time, it is necessary for me to have a pre-packed gym bag in my possession.

I have been on the hunt for the past year for the perfect bag that can fit everything I need. I have faced several challenges when searching for a bag.

Can it safely hold my laptop?

Is there a place for shoes?

Where can I put wet clothes?

Is the fabric durable and easy to clean?

Is the bag attractive?

 A couple months ago I came across something I thought may work. I began following Apera Bags on social media for several weeks before having the pleasure of meeting the team at the Rock n Roll Half Marathon Expo in Virginia Beach. After speaking with the reps and getting to put my hands on the quality made bag, I knew this was going to be a fit! No more lugging my sneakers around town in a separate bag from the trusty laptop case.

My new sidekick to success is the fuchsia cross body Sling Tote.

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MY FAVORITE FEATURES

The sweat proof fabric is just one of the many features that make this bag my new must have. The cross body strap of this Sling Tote is crucial for the days when I am lugging around everything but the kitchen sink.

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What’s In My Apera Bag?

laptop, lunch, shoes, dry clothes, makeup, toiletries, planner, wallet

Apera Bags have a Mary Poppins quality of fitting all my high ticket items in one place. I run from the gym, to the coffee house, to meetings all day long and this bag can handle the haul.

The durability of the bag brings a toughness to handle anything I throw at it, but the girly color makes it feminine and fun.

 The small outside pockets are easy access for keys, lip gloss, and glasses.

Check out the many style options available in both masculine and feminine color options from back packs to sling totes. If you are in Hampton Roads, you can check out Apera Bags at Running Etc.

For a chance to win an Apera Bag for yourself, head over to to the link below. At the end of each month, one lucky Apera customer will receive a bag of their choice.

ENTER TO WIN AN APERA BAG

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White Bean Chicken Chili

Crockpot’s are a girls best friend. I use mine weekly during the fall and winter months. It is a great way to prepare bulk food for the week. It is also perfect for preparing some comforts foods without the hidden calories.

We know convenience is key when eating healthy living a busy lifestyle. When lunch and dinner is made ahead of time with healthy ingredients, you are less likely to make a bad, rushed, less desirable fat filled meal.

Sunday is typically the day I do food prep for the week. This week, pulling apart a pre roasted chicken was part of the plan. Some of the chicken was diced and put aside for other meals this week and some was portioned out for this yummy fall flavored chili.

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Dump all ingredients in the crockpot. Set on low in the morning and forget about it until dinner. By the time all your work day is complete, you will be ready to chow.

Warm chili is one of my favorite meals, especially after a cool fall evening run.

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Secret Weapon Top Easy Cooking, NO MORE CHOPPING!

Secret Weapon Top Easy Cooking, NO MORE CHOPPING!
*look for these in your frozen foods section*

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A Pain In The Ass Brings Blessing and Perspective

A perfect fall day, cool seasonal temps, the sun is shining, and I am running through beautiful downtown Hampton beside the waterfront along side some of my favorite runners…and then it happens. My right glute starts to twitch and unfortunately I knew what was coming. I turned to my friend Roy who was pacing and told him I was having issues. He could tell by the look on my face that I was struggling. Over the next 4 miles, he made a great effort to pull/push/cheer me along.  I tucked myself along side him for as long as I could.

My dreaded hip flexor had been triggered and had become a pain in the ass!!!  This year’s Crawlin Crab offered the perfect fall day, the perfect pacers, and a not so perfect body at mile 7. A literal pain in the ass. Running at about 70% effort felt more like slow motion with a body that wouldn’t work.

Most runners know that double digit runs often become mind over matter, and for me mile 8 is where the mind game began. I pushed through to this point pacing for a sub 2:00 half.  At mile 10 the wheels began to fall off. The twitching turned into complete lock down mode and by mile 11 my entire right side had locked and brought me to a screeching hault. I felt angry, frustrated, defeated and the tears began to come. I was fortunate enough to have so many great friends run by on the course offering cheers of support and strength. After walking the last mile, I trotted my way through the final 400 meters and that is where my coach was waiting. He knew right away I was hurting and shuffled me over to a chair and offered me an ice bag and a much appreciated pep talk. After my mini melt down at the finish line, I made my way in to the after party where I was greeted with smiles, hugs, and stories of remarkable races from some of my running buddies. It was then that I began shifting my focus from what I HADN’T accomplished and began looking more to what I HAD.

By nature I may be competitive,  I may be driven, but I am also harder on myself than anyone else. I heard myself offering up thoughts of congratulations to other runners and knew I needed to do that for myself. It was about that time, Jerry Frostick came up and in his fatherly caring way told me to shake it off, to get healthy, and to focus on all the good things I had going on in my life. He was so right!!! It was normal to be discouraged and disappointed but not to let it hold me down. His chat gave me perspective. Thoughts of gratitude filled my mind.

PERSPECTIVE OF BLESSINGS

My 2:08 this year was over a 6 minute course PR and that was pretty darn good, WIN

Two weeks before the race I passed the hardest exam of my life, WIN

Woke up race day morning to several texts from friends wishing me good luck, WIN

Two coaches that care about my success and well being on and off the road, WIN

3 amazing pacers that pulled me along for as long as my body would allow, WIN

Being present as some my friends threw down some of their best times in a race and I was there to celebrate with them, WIN

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The pain in the ass had turned into a blessing and forced me to gain new perspective for what accomplishments I had made.

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