Friday, February 26, 2010

Running Update

Hey guys...I got news...I've mostly been keeping this to my little self, but here it is...

I'M DOING ANOTHER HALF MARATHON this spring! Woot! I'm excited, but I'm nervous. I may call myself a runner and I do run a lot, but really I'm pretty sure I'm not built for it...and I actually don't even like it all that much, lol. But I love how it makes me feel and how strong it makes me.

Today I ran the longest AND the fastest I've run probably since my last half...6.5 miles! I did it in 68 minutes, and that includes my 1 min. and 30 seconds warmup and beginning of cooldown! (I know, I need to cooldown better, lol) That's pretty much half the marathon right there. I have quite a few weeks left to train for it too, so I'm stoked.

I'm reading Brendan Brazier's book "Thrive" right now and it's super inspiring. I love how he has a super healthy lifestyle, food and fitness wise. The whole book is just fantastic and I completely recommend it to EVERYONE who has the least bit of interest in fitness (hey! You never know, maybe you can win them over to a more healthy lifestyle with it!)

I'm using quite a lot of my Nutiva Hemp Raw Protein powder lately, as well as my organic, raw maca powder, local bee pollen, and blue-green algea. For the most part, I've had a lot of energy training for this half, except for a couple runs. So I guess this stuff is working. I'm hoping to bump up my greens consumption and have more protein, muscle building foods in this next while. If you're a runner, comment below and let me know what helps you in your running lifestyle!

Btw, my Merry Hempster's vegan lip balm is all gone and it sure lasted me a while. While I loved that stuff, I'm using Burt's Bees a friend gave me right now and I LOVE that just as much!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Pass on the Carrots

Never thought you'd hear me say that, did you? But don't worry...I don't mean for good. I just mean CHANGE IT UP. Recently, what we've been doing is putting jicama or turnip on our veggie trays. We cut it into long, peeled strips and dunk away in the dip. I like them good and plain.

Seriously though, I just love raw jicama (hica-a-ma) and turnip. It sounds a little strange, I know. The first time I saw raw a turnip on a crudites platter, I thought that it was extremely odd, but then I tried it. So just for a bit, replace the carrot sticks and might be pleasantly surprised.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Treats for Valentines

Happy Valentine's Everybody! Since tomorrow is the big day I'm just re-posting a special post I did a year or two ago...with loads of delicious recipes and pictures to drool over. Hope you enjoy and can make a recipe or two for yourselves tomorrow! Perfect for two!

These are raw chocolate Turtles (you can see the caramel peeking through on the first one) and around it are "Chocolate Carmel Bites". I originally found a caramel dipping sauce at Gone Raw by Mish. I tweaked it a bit and made it into just plain caramel.

about 4 TB of tahina
about 4-6 medjool dates (depending on how sweet you like it, but this will make it thicker too)
a wee bit of vanilla
and a few tablespoons of maple syrup until the consistency you desire...but you want it thick, like a dough almost)
Mix it up in the food processor.
Dipping Chocolate
about 3-4 BIG heaping tablespoons of melted coconut butter
a few TB. of organic cocoa powder (you can use carob or cacao, if you have it on hand)
equal parts of agave nectar and maple syrup
You want this to be a bit thicker, not a sauce, but just a nice, smooth dipping chocolate. Because coconut oil is such a stable cooking fat you can melt it by warming it over the stove on the lowest setting. It's still raw. ;0)

Make little balls of the caramel and slide a pecan in the middle of it. Flatten it a little and with a fork, dip it into the chocolate mixture. Put on wax paper. Do this with all of them and then put them in the freezer to harder.
Caramel Bites (above)
With the caramel mixture make little balls and with your finger make a deep dent in the middle. Fill with liquid chocolate. Freeze till hard.
Caramel Chocolate Bites
Do the same as above, but just mix in some carob/cacao/cocoa powder in the caramel.
These are nice little nibbles when you need that little "sweet" during the day.
Caramel Almond Smacks (the picture below, left)
Just make flat, thin circles in the palm of your hand with the caramel. Place on wax paper. With a spoon drop on some chocolate and garnish with an almond.
And now for my favorite of ALL! Oh, these are to die for! (drumroll, please!)
Dark Truffle Fudge (the heart above)
4-5 TB. of melted coconut butter
enough organic cocoa till it's a very thick fudge consistency
equal parts of pure maple syrup and agave nectar to sweetness
And then...thin it out with Coconut Milk for a creamy, milk-ness. It should thicken more when it's been in the fridge or freezer for a while. Place in a small square container and when more firm, score or slice into little fudge bars.
Oh, I could go on and on about the fudge. And I've tried lots of different fudges, or at least some, and I liked it, but this TOPS it! The ingredients may seem simple, but this really just melts in your mouth. It's so creamy and silky smooth (one fudge I can think of, seemed a bit granular, you know). If you're crazy about dark chocolate like me, this if for you! My mind spins when I think of all the incredible things you can do with it. Make balls and cover with a different type of glazing chocolate sauce or use as a layer in a sweet pie...sigh.
As you can see, I topped one or two of them with raw cacao nibs. It's funny, in the picture to the left you can see me (or at least my lips) taking the picture in the reflection. I was drooling over the chocolate, lol! I shaped the fudge into hearts and put a little bit of caramel into the middle of it.
Valentine's Day is a fun family tradition here. We always have a family banquet together, wear red or pink (it's a rule!), and decorate the kitchen table. My Mom always writes out a Valentine for each of us on a red or pink heart and leaves it on our plate, along with a whole pile of chocolate treats for us. This is always special, because she always writes out character qualities that she sees in each of us and tells us how much she loves us. I always save those hearts, they are definitely a dear treasure!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Raw Protein Smoothies

Lately I've really been digging my hemp protein powder from Nutiva. I have two flavors, chocolate and berry, but I mostly use my berry kind. I've been doing a lot of running and DVD workouts lately...I also try to do a situp-program whenever possible (I've already managed to make it up to 91 situps...almost 100!) Even though it's the heart of winter where I live, after a good workout a cold, smoothie is what I crave! I ran 5 miles today, the first time in a long time, so that felt really good. I'm making it my goal to train without stopping, just to slow down my pace when I need I was speeding along. FELT SO GOOD! I love it when you just feel in the GROVE for running. Before that I did 20 minutes of interval training and I'm pretty sure housework counts as part of your fitness outtake. ;0)

Here's a couple smoothies that I've been loving lately! I even posted the nutritional info along with it...I personally find it very helpful and fun to track my protein and fibre intake...I don't care too much about carbs, fat, or sugar (as long as it's generally on the healthy side, lol), but I like to know I'm taking in enough of the other two.


1/2 cup blueberries, frozen
1 banana
4 TB. raw hemp protein powder (I used berry flavour, but it really doesn't matter)
1 TB. flaxseed
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup raw almond milk

Blend and top with bee pollen for extra energy.


Calories: 358
Total fat: 6.9g (mind you, this is the HEALTHY fats we NEED!)
Carbs: 71.8g
Fibre: 16.7 (which is really good for a shake!!!)
Sugars: 43.4g
Protein: 11.8g

1/4 cup apple juice
1 TB. coconut oil (I used Efa Gold brand)
1/3 cup frozen strawberries
1/2 banana
4 TB. hemp protein powder
1 TB. flaxseed
1/4 cup almond milk

BLEND and top with sparkly, blue manna flakes for extra super food power...or drink as is. :0)


Calories: 392
Fat: 19.5g
Carb: 50.5
Fibre: 13g
Sugars: 28.1g
Protein: 8.3
This is our winter wonderland and our beautiful house our family built ourselves...