End of Summer Stories

So first off let me just say WOW! Where did the entire summer go?? Last time I checked, summer was just beginning and our plans to do all sorts of fun, adventuresome, amazing, entertaining and exciting things were just getting under way. I wait all year-long for summertime and this year it just flew by with the blink of an eye. I will say this though, we did do so many things this summer that it definitely was not boring. Let’s have a recap:

To start off summer, we were still playing baseball! Nolan made the 9/10 all-star team as an 8 year,old (league age 9) and for the first few weeks of summertime we were busy with that. What an experience! Nolan works so hard as a ball player, and for him to achieve such an accomplishment was awesome!

Then onto our family trip to Kentucky! On July 4th we flew to Nashville, the home of the nation’s largest firework display. Well we didn’t exactly get to see any fireworks due to the fact that is was pouring rain the entire day and night, but we did get to walk around the next a do some sight seeing.
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The next morning we drove to Cadiz,
Kentucky where we spent the next 4 days hanging out at a lake house on Lake Barkley with family from all over.
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It was such a beautiful place, that definitely is not suffering from a drought like we are here in California, everything was so lush and GREEN! There we got to experience lightning bugs, huge spiders, deer, geese, family time and lots of laughs together!
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While in the area we also adventured to Mammoth Caves, definitely something to see! On out way of Cadiz, we headed straight to Louisville, Kentucky to see the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory.
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If you are baseball fan, this is a must see. While we were there, we took a tour to see how the Louisville Slugger bats are made, and at the time the factory was actually making the bats for the 2015 all-star game that was to take place the following week in Cincinnati. How cool is that!!

One week after coming home from our Kentucky trip, we ventured about 60 minutes south to Rosarito Mexico!! The man of the house and his tournament softball team were competing in a tournament there, and we got to enjoy Rosarito for the weekend. And what’s even more awesome, is that they won!
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Woo hoo! Champs baby!! It was a great experience for Nolan to see how the culture is so different down there and eat tons of tacos! It was a great time!

The following weeks were filled with time spent with friends at the pool, beach days, baseball games, sleepovers, softball games, dog walking, and before you know it, school.

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I definitely cannot complain that we didn’t do enough over the summer, in fact I wish we could have squeezed in MORE! I do welcome school days though, because with it comes a routine and a BEDTIME!

My 30 day “Plant-Based not Vegan” Diet

“Vegan is a dirty word.” – Robert Shackleford.

The word vegan, or veganism, is similar to vegetarianism in the sense that meat is not part of your diet.

No cows allowed

In a vegan diet though, no animal products are consumed. That means that first you don’t get to eat chicken, pork and anything that was once alive, and secondly you also don’t get to eat eggs, milk, cheese or any other type of food that was once derived from an animal.I have been considering giving the vegan diet a try for some time. I am not a picky eater, and for those of you who know me know that I probably will eat anything placed in front of me. The idea of attaining all nutrients from non meat sources intrigued me as well as the ability to show non support for meat processing and packaging facilities. Plus I like to experiment with foods.

A year ago I tried a pesco-vegetarian diet. This meant that I was able to consume everything that a vegetarian could in their diet with the addition of fish. I don’t care for fish too much, but I felt that it would give the advantage of additional protein where other wise I might struggle to find it. I did this diet for about 6 months, and really didn’t crave meat at all. Since I enjoy all types of foods, especially fruits and vegetables, I knew I would be able to do it. Eventually I started to eat meat again, in smaller amounts, simply for the fact that I always had to prepare two meals for my family. I live with a meat-eater who was not totally on board with my decision because of the way it could affect the food he eats. So it lasted for a while, but meals became more work. Not that I don’t love cooking, but I honestly don’t have all day to do it. Not to mention that I actually eat food, not processed food crap.

I recently started reading Scott Jurek’s book, Eat and Run. For those of you don’t know, Scott Jurek is an ultra runner with numerous wins and course records under his belt. He also is a vegan plant-based eater. While reading his book, I imagined that I would be able to consume the foods that he ate, and that I would still be able to perform at my current running abilities, if not better. In other words, I might be able to do my best and feel as amazing as he does. Scott is not vegan so to say but instead a 100% plant-based eater. This is where that quote by my friend Robert Shackleford  a.k.a Shacky, comes into play.

A plant-based eater is someone who actually fills their plate with foods that are or once were plants. They are able to eat vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, fruits and legumes. This means that eating a bunch of processed food crap is out of the question. Someone who consumes a vegan diet can easily get away with eating foods such as potato chips, and McDonald’s french fries (yes, I know french fries come from potatoes). Neither of these are foods I care to eat. These items may not contain animal products, but that doesn’t mean they are good for you. Processed foods like these most likely contain high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, artificial food coloring, and not to mention lots of additives that are unwanted in the body. If you chose to eat vegan why would you fill yourself with preservatives, additives and crap? This is why Shacky says, “Vegan is a dirty word.” If your diet consist’s of plants then let’s call it what it is, plant-based.

So here is my challenge. I don’t eat a lot of meat as it is, nor do I consume dairy products, and definitely try to stay away from processed foods. I am challenging myself to eat a clean, plant-based diet, rather than a vegan diet for thirty days. I don’t think I will have a problem with the exception of eating eggs and imagining new foods to eat. Getting enough protein now is going to be a challenge in itself, because that’s where the eggs played a role before. The health advantages to eating this way are huge. The risk of developing diabetes and heart disease among other diseases can be greatly reduced, granted you keep up the protein intake with beans and legumes as well as consume the proper amount of vitamins and minerals. It will keep me on my toes as far as what I choose to put into my body, and maybe, just maybe, I will become a better runner because of it.

Could you challenge yourself like this? Comment and let me know why.

Stay tuned for updates on my new challenge as well as fun recipes that I may dream up 🙂

It’s Taco Tuesday!

I love tacos and in honor or Taco Tuesday I decided to have breakfast tacos!! These are super easy and quick to make and also very low-fat. Yummy!!

Two yummy breakfast tacos with a large handful of berries

Wanna make your own breakfast tacos? If you don’t have the same veggies or fruit on hand just use what you have, which makes this recipe a good one to clean out the fridge 🙂 Here’s how I made mine:

1/4 cup diced bell peppers

1/4 cup diced onion

1 whole egg

1 egg white

Trader Joe’s Olive Oil cooking spray

2 corn tortillas

Trader Joes Serrano Salsa fresca

1 cup strawberries

  1. When your pan is good and hot spray it with the cooking spray. You will be sauteing the veggies in this, so if you go too light they may stick to the pan.
  2. Add the bell peppers and onions, or whatever you have on hand. Saute until they soften.
  3. Whisk the eggs together and add to the pan and cook until they are no longer slimy. Generally about 3-5 minutes. I generally eat egg whites because I don’t want all of the added fat and cholestrol, but egg yolks have choline in them, a B-complex vitamin thats beneficial for brain function.
  4. Warm tortillas in a pan then add the egg mixture. Top with salsa.
  5. Grab a handful of berries and enjoy!

Trader Joe’s Serrano Salsa fresca

                  YUM!!

Something New

Running is a huge part of my life. I am not great at it, and do not have the most experience, but the memories and feelings I get out of it are all mine. This blog will serve as a platform where I can document my experiences through running. People run for many different reasons, whether it be to lose weight, cure boredom, running from something or someone, and because they simply love it. I run for the pleasure of knowing that I can. I run for health benefits as well as feeling connected to a better me.

Here I will include all things that interest, inspire, and encourage me and I hope you will join me on my travels.