Foodie Fridays: Chicken “Zoodle” Soup

You guys, I have been MIA a little this week. I’ve been so busy! At work,¬†we hit the second semester and that came along with two brand new classes. Plus, the main course that I teach is Web Design and Animation, and we just began the Animation unit. That means most of my day will be pretty busy for the next few weeks until things calm down. Boston training has picked up (in a good way) so by the time I get home at night, I’m beat.

I still owe a race recap from last weekend, so I’m hoping to get around to that later today after getting caught up on what’s been going on with all of you! But I didn’t want a Friday to pass without a recipe, and I have a great one to share this week.

There really is no cuisine that I don’t like, and this dish is Thai inspired. Think along the lines of going to a Thai restaurant for Tom Kha Gai soup, which is a favorite of mine. I was in need of something different for lunch at work this week, and came across this on Pinterest.

I didn’t change anything about the original recipe, except¬†I went heavy¬†on the cilantro. I LOVE cilantro but always go easy with it because my husband hates it. But this soup wasn’t for him, so I got a little excited. He actually did eat a¬†bowl of and loved it, cilantro and all. He did tell me that I put too much cilantro on it, though. Ha! So those of you who are not a fan, go easy on it. Maybe you can substitute with some parsley or something.

Also, this recipe is very paleo friendly! The fish sauce might be the only questionable ingredient. I had some in the house and didn’t go searching for something special, but the original recipe recommends a brand to make it “paleo friendly”. I’m pretty sure our paleolithic ancestors didn’t have access to fish sauce regardless, so I’m not sure how paleo friendly any of it is so I used what I had on hand.

This does require you to make some zucchini pasta, which is fun. I have a spiralizer and love breaking that thing out. If you don’t have one, I’m sure you can improvise and make something with a box grater, but I never tried it.
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Paleo Thai Chicken Zoodle Soup (Adapted from All I Dream About Food)
Yield: 8 to 9 cups

Serving Size: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 onion,chopped
  • 1 jalape√Īo, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tbsp green curry paste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 15-ounce can coconut milk, full fat
  • 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound chicken breasts or thighs, thinly sliced against the grain
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 medium zucchini, spiralized
  • 1 lime cut into 8 wedges

Instructions

  1. In a large sauce pan, heat coconut oil over medium heat until melted and shimmering. Add onions and sauté until just translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in jalape√Īo, curry paste and garlic and saut√© until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add chicken broth and coconut milk, whisking until fully combined. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and add red pepper, chicken and fish sauce. Let simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Stir in cilantro.
  3. Divide zoodles among 8 soup bowls and ladle soup over; the heat of the soup will make the zoodles tender.
  4. Serve each with a squeeze of lime.

This was a great soup to have on hand for lunch all week! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

What I’m Working Out to Wednesday

Bullet Train
Steven Swartz ft. Joni Fatora

I promise I’ll stop with the dubstep soon. I just listened to a LOT of it when I was trying to pick my pole competition piece¬†so it’s all still so fresh in my mind. I don’t know anything about this artist at all, but the song was high on my list of picks for the competition. I love the beat, and it’s equally as fun on a running playlist.¬†I found it when listening to my Dubstep Radio station in Pandora. Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

 

Boston Marathon Training: Hansons, Week 8

There isn’t much¬†to say about this week or any of my workouts. I almost feel like I’m on autopilot right now! ¬†On Sunday, my husband had a fever and that has me freaked out. He seems fine today so I hope that he was just stressed out and overtired, which is highly likely. He woke up with no fever this morning, so fingers crossed it was just a weird fluke.

I switched my long run and my tempo run to accommodate the Super Bowl Sunday 10K. I spent a lot of time at the pole studio and a lot of time running and there was a race in there this week, so I should have a lot to say, but I don’t!

Here’s the¬†pace guide I’m using:

Marathon Goal –¬†¬†3:05
Marathon Pace/Tempo Runs –¬†¬†7:03/mile
Recovery Runs Р9:11/mile
Aerobic A/Easy – 8:36
Aerobic B/Easy – 8:01
Long Run: 7:42

Monday, 2/1: AM Strength Session + 8 Mile Easy Run+ Pole Fitness 

It was Day 1 of our StrongBody Streak, so I started the day off with about 25 minutes of body weight exercises for my legs, hips and abs. I used a workout that I recently pinned plus my usual apps on my phone.

It was a damp and dreary day and I was under dressed for this run, but I got it done. Since we’d hammered out 14 speedy miles the¬†day before, I went towards the easier side¬†of my easy run range, with an overall pace of 8:33. I still don’t know when you are supposed to use recovery pace, but if I felt like running slower than my easy range, I certainly would have. I’m only supposed to run 6 miles on Mondays, but Hansons says that you can add to the easy runs to add distance and I like the eight mile distance. I was absolutely freezing after this run was over¬†because it was so gross out.

I headed to pole class and instead of working on our competition pieces, we worked on some new combos. One of the spins we learned was called a Trapped Iguana, and it was so pretty:

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Tuesday, 2/2:¬†Track Workout: 3¬†mile warm up, 3×1 mile repeats w/400 meter recoveries (10 miles) + Strength Training + Pole Fitness

Once again, I did my track workout on the treadmill (since we are still looking at snow covered tracks, at least as far as I know). Let me start by saying that I hate mile repeats. That being said, the workout went really well. I just dread them. I’d rather do last week’s workout twice through than go and do three mile repeats. I love 800s…1000s…even 1200s! I think the mile just seems so daunting to have to do over and over and over.

According to Hansons, my 5K goal pace for these should be 6:12. I set the treadmill for 9.6 (which is a 6:15) and would speed up drastically in the last quarter of each repeat to reinforce a fast finish. I was spot on each time. On the last repeat, I forgot to hit lap on my watch so I have no clue what my time was. I’d guess sub 6:10 since I cranked up the treadmill a little earlier on that repeat since it was my last one.

For the streak, I did a workout from an old Runner’s World that focuses on legs using free weights. Afterward, I did some planks, bridges, leg raises and hip drops as¬†a quick ab workout before heading to the pole studio to meet my sister in law. I worked on my routine for most of the class…I promise to post some little Instagram clips of it soon when I get things cleaned up!

Wednesday, 2/3:  Strength/30 minute Walk + Pole Fitness

Headed to the gym before work and did a 30 minute strength session (mostly legs, hips and abs) and then walked on the treadmill for about a half hour just to get my legs moving. After work, more competition practice at the pole studio. It was a ski club night, but it was raining pretty badly so we postponed.

Thursday, 2/4:  Strength Training + 12 Mile Run 

I woke up and did about 25 minutes of strength training at home, and used my Nike Training Club app for the workouts. I love that app. I did a workout called Core Stability, and then added my usual planks, bridges, leg raises, hip drops and MYRTLs afterward.

Since I had a 10K on the schedule for Sunday and my long run was only¬†supposed to be 10 miles this week (you only run long every other week on the Hansons plan, which I’m loving), I moved the long run to Thursday and planned to use Sunday’s 10K as my tempo. I drove to Bethlehem on my way home from work, parked at Monocasy Park and ran one of my old loops around Bethlehem. I ran on roads that I hadn’t been on in a long time, and it was such a great run. I kept the pace¬†comfortable, 8:28. I felt really good so I ended up extending the run to 12 miles instead of 10. I felt like I could have gone forever, and it was really nice out.

Friday, 2/5: 10 Mile Recovery Run + Strength/Core+ Pole Fitness

It was windy, but a beautiful day for a run. I ran a new-ish loop in Saucon Valley (parts of it I ran a few weeks ago with my friend Chris G.) and kept the pace easy, 8:22. At night, I worked on my routine at pole class. I changed up a few parts of the routine¬†and got a little frustrated because we had to do a “show and tell” for the rest of the girls in the class. I didn’t have much to “show” since I decided to make a few changes to what I had, and needed to clean it up a lot. For my pole warm up, I did my own core workout and MYRTLs.

Saturday, 2/6: 7 Mile Run + Pole Fitness + Core/MYRTLs

Got up for a super early run with Kathy and tried to keep the pace on the easy side (7:59 overall) since we were both running the 10K the next day. It was an early morning and pretty chilly, but uneventful besides that. It was great to get to run with Kathy – I haven’t been running with her as much because I’ve been running a bit later on the weekends.

I headed to the pole studio and took back to back classes so I could practice my competition piece and get the issues worked out from the day before. I followed that up with a core workout and my MYRTLs at home.

Sunday: 2/7: Tempo Run: Super Bowl Sunday 10K (3 mile warm up and cool down for 12.2 miles total), Core/MYRTLs

Tempo run that included a 10K race!! Recap coming soon.

After the race and the cool down, I went home and did some core and my MYRTLs. Not too much to say about that. I did lots of food prep for the week – it really helps me stay on track with my diet during the week!

Hansons Training Plan Thoughts/Rambling

Weeks 2-10 in the Hansons advanced plan are¬†devoted to building speed. I do feel myself getting stronger each week, and I did eeek out a teensy PR in the 10K. However,¬†my 10K time did not indicate a 3:05 marathon finish was in my future. There are many factors to consider other than Sunday’s race, but it is just another measure of fitness as this process continues.

On the flip side of that statement, since I was using Sunday’s race as my tempo run, the only pace I was supposed to run was marathon pace, and I ran faster than that. I’m not going to readjust my goal at this time since I have been hitting my paces in my workouts, but I will keep my 10K finish¬†in the back of my mind as Boston gets closer.

Weeks 11-17 are devoted to building strength. There are still two weekly “speed” workouts (track and tempo), but the focus of the track workout will be quite different. I only have two more weeks of hammering out 5K pace for my track workouts before the workouts turn into some seriously crazy shit (I’m talking 2×3 mile repeats. Apparently, this is a thing). The good thing is, I’ll be running these workouts at about 10 seconds per mile off of marathon pace rather than 5K pace. So in THEORY, this should certainly be challenging but not out of the question. Don’t get me wrong – these scare the shit out of me for sure.

Overall, I love this training plan.¬†Is it going to help me get to that 3:05 marathon range? I still don’t know for sure. But as I’ve said before, I feel more confident running. MUCH happier. I had ZERO anxiety before the 10K this past weekend. I was more worried about actually doing the warm up and cool down to make it a legitimate tempo run. I suck at warming up before races and usually¬†blow off my cool downs!

Strength training!!! Who’s been streaking with me? How is it going? What else is new?¬†

Swim:  0 meters ♥ Bike: 0 miles ♥  Run: 59.2 miles

Foodie Friday: Spinach and Goat Cheese Stuffed Meatloaf

Maaaaaa! The meatloaf!!!

Bonus points if you can guess the movie. But seriously, meatloaf is the last thing I really ever thought I would be craving, let alone posting all over the Internet. I never ate it growing up, and something about the name always kind of grossed me out. It’s a loaf. Of meat. It just seems weird.

Apparently, my husband grew up eating meatloaf and has requested that I make it over our 10 years of marriage. I’ve tried many recipes, some which are great and others not so much. Even though this one is certainly NOT the most elaborate, this has quickly become a staple in our weekly meal rotations.

This is another recipe that I¬†got inspiration for on Pinterest, but I’ve since made it my own. I was digging the concept but not crazy about the ingredients or the method used to execute the original recipe.

Once again, this isn’t quite Paleo, but more Paleo-ish due to the addition of the goat cheese. I love, love, LOVE goat cheese SO much. However, I realize not everyone feels the same love as I do, so feel free to experiment and try something else. Maybe some feta? Blue cheese? The possibilities are endless. Of course, if you have a meatloaf recipe that you love, you could always use that but adapt the idea of “stuffing” it.

Spinach and Goat Cheese Stuffed Meatloaf

Ingredients

  • 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2lbs grass fed ground beef
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • handful of raw spinach
  • 4 oz of che‚Äôvre goat cheese
  • 1-2 teaspoons of fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
  • 2 T tomato paste
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Heat desired amount of oil in a skillet until shimmering. Add the chopped onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, salt, pepper, and rosemary and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  3. Add add the meat and eggs to a large bowl. Add the onion and garlic mixture and combine well. The mixture will be slightly wet – this is fine!
  4. Throw down some plastic wrap on the counter and then roll out your meat on top of it. Try to flatten it out and create a rectangle (mine was a little long) and then add the spinach and goat cheese to the middle.
  5. Using one side of the plastic wrap flap one side into the middle, and then do the same to the other, so they create a roll.
  6. Dress up the top with your tomato paste.
  7. Cook about 45-50 minutes. I find that 50 minutes is a little too much, but it all depends on your oven.
  8. Cut into slices and ENJOY!

 

Goodbye January

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  1. Total run miles for January: 207.5
  2. Miles run, year to date: 207.5
  3. Number of races in January: 0
  4. Longest run in January: 14 miles

I actually said out loud when I totaled up my miles from January, “Really?”. I didn’t feel like I ran that much. I was thinking I was going to be in the 125-150 range. I hadn’t really thought about it, because the 207.5 makes sense if I thought about it. I think it was just that the first half of the month felt so crappy that I blocked those miles out.

January started off ROUGH for me. Though I was already in week 4 of Boston training when the month kicked off, my fitness just wasn’t where I wanted it to be. I expected to be out of racing shape, but being hit hard with illness took a lot out of me. It set me back to square one, and every single run caused me a little bit of anger, anxiety, and hatred.¬†I seriously considered re-evaluating my goal marathon pace. I wasn’t sure at which point I should do that, but eventually my legs got the memo to show up. I still don’t know if I have a spring PR in me, but at least I feel like I’m in the ballpark again.

Thankfully, I had no races in the immediate future. If you look back at the past few years, I typically run¬†early season marathons. Races in February and early March, and every year it stresses me out because of the toll the holidays takes on me. Every year, I say, “NEVER AGAIN”, but I cave and sign up for a race anyway. This was the first year I held back, and dear GOD I’m so glad that I did. I have no marathons until Boston, and a low key 10K this weekend that I do for fun each year. No pressure to be running huge miles yet, and a lot of the focus has been on speed.

I think that’s the biggest difference in this month and in this training cycle. This month was not about me having to log 20 milers because of an impending marathon, but about taking the time to build speed. I really believe it’s why I am loving the Hanson’s plan so much. In reviewing my past training plans, I’d do weeks of slow base building and then expect to be able to nail a random tempo run. Then, I wouldn’t do another one for several weeks and expect it to go better than the last, though I hadn’t been practicing them. Why would I expect to get faster if I wasn’t actually working at getting faster? Mind blown right here.

My month began with a pretty serious running rut. I started to feel better a few weeks into the month, and the last few weeks have felt a lot¬†better. I’ve logged lots of solo miles, and¬†miles with friends. I’ve really started to enjoy my group long runs again. They used to be a source of anxiety for me, but lately I really look forward to them because I feel¬†more confident.

I did¬†a serious overhaul on my diet and I feel good about where I am with it. I lost 6 lbs, and I’ve¬†done a ton¬†of cooking. I’ve been diligent about eating healthy and clean throughout the week, but¬†allow myself to indulge¬†in goodies on the weekends. I still mow down pizza on Friday, and make non-Paleo “comfort” food on Sundays for dinner. I made snow day treats and put back¬†Girl Scout cookies like a champ, but I’ve been able to keep it under control. I love the way I feel in training when I’m eating well, so that’s been a huge motivator for me to stay on track.

In the pole fitness world, I signed up for my first competition. I’m in the process of choreographing a routine to a song, and I am in wayyyy over my head. It’s the hardest strength training I’ve ever done, and signing up for the competition means spending lots of time practicing. It’s so hard, but I absolutely love it. You will have to stalk my Instagram for video clips, since it’s all about stringing moves together now.

There have been lots of ups and downs. I had to say goodbye to my beloved Garmin…

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But replaced it with the new love of my life…

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We had the biggest blizzard maybe ever:

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And my beloved Yotarolla (my nickname for my baby) died on me:

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She’s been to almost all of the marathons I’ve done in driving distance, and has been to Boston all five years I’ve run it. I’m still looking for a replacement. Do you know that they stopped making manual transmissions for the Corolla S? How do you make a “sport” version of a car, but with no stick shift? I love the S but I also love driving stick. It seems as though everyone is moving towards these CVT transmissions, which seem super nice but…I really, really, love driving stick!! Even in a little Corolla, I feel like I can drive it like I stole it if it’s manual.¬†I’m heartbroken and lost!

I digress. Moving into February, I hope to continue with the progress I’ve been making. I really want to focus on:

  • Strength training, which is why we started the¬†‚̧ԳŹ StrongBody Streak! It’s not too late to join the fun!
  • Continue with a clean diet
  • Finish choreographing my pole fitness routine for the competition.

How was the first month of the year for you? Any goals for February?

What I’m Working Out to Wednesday

Disclosure ft. Sam Smith
Latch

When¬†I was thinking about what song I might want to do for my pole routine, this one was a contender. One of my high school students (she’s a dancer) actually reminded me about it and I added it to my list. I have the newer album by Disclosure (Caracal) because I LOVE the song that features Lorde, Magnets. I’m not really a fan of the rest of the album, so I never downloaded their older one. Until I realized this jam was on it. I downloaded Settle (which features Latch) and I like it about as much as I like Caracal. But I love the song, so I’m sharing it. It’s catchy and I can’t get it out of my head once it’s stuck in there.

Do you like Disclosure? Ever download an album only to find that you only like their hit song?

 

‚̧ԳŹ StrongBody Streak Update!

strongbody

 

Our 29 day strength streak starts today!! Are you in??? Commit to loving your strength training for the month of February by doing 15 minutes of strength training (activities of your choice) every day!

Personally, I’m targeting my core, hips and legs since I seem to have neglected them.

Join us on Facebook!! Request to join our closed group and participate in daily posts. We can swap workout ideas, too!!

What strength goals are you working towards?