WIAW: Juicy-J

 

 

There I was strolling down the Whole Foods eating food of the shelves. I mean actually meandering through aisles with my hand in a large bag of pita chips, the other hand fingering a container of fresh guacamole.

Then I woke up. To realize I had two more days of my juice cleanse. @#$%

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Let’s rewind to Sunday night, which involved ten avid hands in the kitchen and five too many eclectic dishes. To complement the burgers (salmon burger for me), Japchae (Korean vermicelli), shrimp cocktail, Kimchi, and wine, some homemade frying techniques demanded testing. Lots and lots of testing.

Japchae:

Katie's twin, the vermicelli noodle bag

Katie’s twin, the vermicelli noodle bag

Zucchs for the Japchae

Zucchs for the Japchae

and chves

and chives

oh and finely diced mushrooms

oh and finely diced mushrooms

voila

voila

 

Burgers:

tomatoes <3

tomatoes <3

rave reviews

rave reviews

 

And then these happened:

dutch oven versions

dutch oven versions

sweet potots. of course, my favorite

sweet potots. of course, my favorite

getting fancy

getting fancy

two styles of white potatoes

two styles of white potatoes

bigger cuts

bigger cuts

matchstick, mcee-d's

matchstick, mcee-d’s

 

 

And here we are now. As I coddle my final juice of the evening, reliving the aroma of sweet potatoes experiencing rebirth in peanut oil.

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It is Thanksgiving next week, and I will soon be wrecking havoc on my digestive system to next Thanksgiving week. Seven layer carrot cake, anyone?

I’ve never tried an official cleanse. I’ve juiced my own green juices throughout the day, I’ve watched friends suffer through their expensive concoctions, and I’ve cast a very very very skeptical gaze over the whole trend. But I had yet to experience it first hand until Monday. I’ll let you know my closing thoughts on my experience, the process, my energy, and the product!

 

Have you juice cleansed before?

Foliage Watching

I’ve been a wee bit distracted by the gamut of orange littering the street. There’s little more beautiful than the transition of Fall.

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And evidently, I’ve been too distracted taking pictures next to leaves to blog the past few weeks. Infinite apologies.

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Note: I do have other shoes I swear

 

While I wasn’t foliage watching, there have been a few notable moments:

1) Halloweening in Chicago. It’s a hard life being a party animal unicorn. Costumes followed by a girls weekend in NYC. In withdrawal from everyone and both cities.

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2) It seems that I’m late to the auto-correct text jokes. Regardless, I lost my whole night a few hours of productivity this weekend due to uncontrollable laughter and amusement. I’m actually still chuckling to myself, which my coworkers are clearly loving this bright-eyed Monday morning. Read THIS

 

3) Mediterranean for lunch. I’m successfully hitting my Falafel quota every other day. Be still my heart.

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4) Wearing my underwear on backwards, because I’m that cool. Or maybe because I’m just that lazy to make the transition after my discovery in the work stall. Well, at least I got treated myself to Starbucks. Cheers.

Good day

Good day

 

5) Candy wrappers at the gym. Washington Sports Club is the epitome of health.

nothing like a Hershey's Kiss to fuel your crunches

nothing like a Hershey’s Kiss to fuel your crunches

 

6) My thoughts on trail mix exactly.

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8) Colleen’s new VW body. This made for a very fun drive to our 10 miler trail race.

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9) Tranny Tuesdays in Dupont. But really, there was a wine night with le friends and then the annual Dupont Drag Queen Race. Quite an impressive display of Halloween costumes and very tall, made-up men.

 

How has your November been?

 

WIAW: NOLA Edition

New Orleans saw a college senior roll in for Mardi Gras…and limp out. And we can say that my body and health are still recovering from those four days. Nonetheless, I came back to the scene of music, humidity, and food. I’d like to underscore food many many times. I did a lot of running (indoors I might add, in order to avoid heat stroke hospitalization) to counter the NOLA tastings over countless days.

There was a successful balance between cooking and eating out.

 

 

Breakfast:

Birthday buckwheat pancakes par moi. Banana, just like dad used to make (cough, cough)

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Brunchers:

New Orleans must. Isn’t this what everyone eats post yoga class?

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Lunch:

Hidden neighborhood juice bar. Is that not the most amazing menu design??

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I’ll keep the lunch portion short and sweet. Let’s just say it involved starvation scavenging  a male fridge for something edible. Feat in itself, ladies and gentlemen.

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Din:

Is there anything better than a peasant dinner? Bold red, hearty wheat bread, pungent cheese, guacamole (game time decision), and an amazeball greek salad. Can I get an amen?

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And there were also restaurant tapas. Four times as expensive and not as delicious as our hodge podge snacks above. Some say I’m a cheap date when I’m not ordering lobster

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The  denouement was the birthday dinner. Steak, mashed potatoes, and peas for the boy. Fish, peas, and a yellow heirlooms for me. Wine x5. Could you have guessed?

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Oh, and let’s not forget dessert. Withold too much judgment please, as this baby was created in a kitchen sans pie pan, flour, sugar, butter, or anything relevant to baking.

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I may have had my face buried in some goat cheese right before this was taken. Please forgive.

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Any memorable meals in New Orleans?

Fall into It

After 60 minutes of long holds, trembling triceps, I was finally there. Dear, Shasvasana. My heavy breathing coming to a pause, my lips parting, and eyes falling heavy.

 

In that state of rest, my yoga teacher whispered reminders to be still. To be comforted in this instant. To relish in the moment. And quell our worries and push away those nagging anxieties. We were here. Perfect in this moment.  And exactly where we needed to be.

 

With a crazy work schedule like I had last week, it’s seemingly impossible for those words to resonate.  Heck, I’m even on my work email Sunday night. But we must let them. Be still with your breath and comprehend that you are in this moment—not yesterday’s argument or next month’s job review. You’re here now. This is the opportunity to remain grounded. And to find perspective. Challenge yourself to ride life’s waves and not connect every dot in your life. Be patient enough to endure and strong enough to believe.

 

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WIAW: Well Actually Tuesday

WIAW is back. Thanks, Jenn

 


6am:

After several failed attempts to evade my alarm, I pried my eyes open one-by-one. With mismatched yoga apparel on and a Yogitoes towel in hand, I spent the following hour depleting my body of any and all liquid. That, my friends is what a Hot Power class will do to you. I then tried to salvage what I could of my previously presentable hair and drag myself to work; rosewater spray saved me in the office.

Sweating front row

Sweating front row

 

8:30am:

A few meager endeavors to replenish my liquids occurred while working at my desk.

Infused water. It's like it's spa day in the office

Infused water. It’s like it’s spa day in the office

One for me. One for my colead

One for me. One for my colead

Green monster

Green monster

 

Noon on the dot:

Hangry monster attacks. Need.lunch.now. Luckily, I was overly ambitious this past weekend and did meal prep. Very rare occasion, folks.

 

Roasted Tomato Zucchini :

  • Spiralize two zucchinis

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  • Add can of fire roasted diced tomatoes to frying pan

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  • Sautee tomatoes with bell peppers (any additional vegetable), cumin, pepper, salt, and nutritional yeast

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  • Add protein of choice (I used Beyond Meat from Whole Foods)
  • Top spiraled zucchini noodles with sauce

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  • Bon appetit

 

Snacks:

Not far and few between. Chocolate. And lots of it. Sorry, I consumed my little treats too quickly to photograph.

 

8:05pm:

Tomatoes are my favorite food, if you did not already know. And I prefer to say food because they’re technically a fruit not a vegetable, and when they’re compared with other fruits its a tough call. I digress, tomato salad with balsamic glaze and a faux chicken salad. Delish.

Summer on a plate

Summer on a plate

 

8:35pm:

And then these happened just because. There’s never a wrong time for coconut. Martha Stewart circa English basement in North Dupont. Crazier things have happened?

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How is your Wednesday shaping up?

A Little of This

After such disjointed time in DC this summer, it’s nice to settle back into life in the nation’s capital. I can breath a sigh of relief not having to source my wardrobe from my textbook sized suitcase. With the crisp hint of fall in the air, I’ve been soaking up rendezvous with friends, sleep time in my quasi new apartment (as its been very rare), pumpkin flavored everything, DC centric activities, reading whenever I have a spare second, and overall, some care free weekends.

 

 

This fall has looked a little like this:

Pumpkin candles....and spring tulips

Pumpkin candles….and spring tulips

 

Scoping out my next meal at Ted's

Scoping out my next meal at Ted’s

 

Killing a trail half marathon...while killing myself in the process

Killing a trail half marathon…while killing myself in the process

 

Still nursing wounds

Still nursing wounds

 

Rekindling my love for Sweetgreen salads

Rekindling my love for Sweetgreen salads

 

Alt-J

Alt-J on Wednesday

 

Pumpkin pancakes and pink kettles

Pumpkin pancakes and pink kettles

 

Coveting puppies

Coveting puppies

 

Froyo with my bro

Froyo with my bro

 

Potomac scrambling life

Potomac scrambling life

 

Pumpkin lattes and fall nails

Pumpkin lattes and fall nails

 

Pretending to be hipster

Faux hipster selfies

 

Shifts at the yoga studio

 

Breaking bad therapy

Breaking Bad therapy

 

Anyone watch last night’s finale?? What’s your fall looked like?

Om On

After three weeks of chaco attire, sporadic runs, sitting on planes/trains/automobiles, and erratic eating, there comes a time to get back into the swing of things. That entails using my stove (which I have yet to do in my new apartment), jumping back into a workout routine, no longer living out of a suitcase, meal planning, budgeting, girls nights, and…

Hiking chic

Hiking chic

 

 

The fear. The fear of yoga. Grappling thoughts of tight hamstrings, overwhelming heat, chaturanga fatigue, inflexible everything, and slippery mats filled my head this last week. There’s no wonder that yoga becomes an addicting activity, as the ease of postures and breath come with practice and commitment. And a fallen yogi must get back on her mat regardless of sore hips from 23 hour plane rides and a bowl or three too many of mango sticky rice. It must be done.

Om on

Om on

 

 

And Monday night I did it. Thank you, Mimi for kicking my butt all over the exposed brick. Long, long, long, strong holds were the theme of the class. An hour and fifteen minutes of planks, hip openers, and fire jumps gave me the overwhelming soreness the next morning that I needed. To my surprise, she led me through a new, deep heart-opening camel to wheel to standing transition. Not as scary as it looks.

 

 

 

I’ve found that I can more easily jump back into double digit runs than I can unwaveringly flow into a power vinyasa class after a respite. Yoga for me varies every single day. It’s a constant journey of stronger self, striving to be present, discovering new balances, and that slow but sure handstand.

Intersection of yoga and running

Intersection of yoga and running

 

Hope I can manage yoga and a trail half this weekend. Wish me luck!

Any yoga or running plans?

Thai-Land of the Food

I adore traveling. The opportunity to immerse myself in another world. To witness a culture and people first hand. Jogging past inconceivable urban layouts. Tasting my way through a country’s rich history.

In fact while tasting my way through Bangkok, Thailand, Luang Prabang, and Colombo, I forgot my blogger hat completely. I managed to salvage a few semi-devoured meals, but the pictures do little justice to the dining that took place over the two weeks. From village woks to street carts to boutique cafes.

 

Thanks for hosting, Jenn

 

Fueling for the day (breakfast):

Buffet x5

Buffet x5

Granola hodge podge

Granola hodge podge

Perusing the aisles

Perusing the aisles

Rambutan for days

Rambutan for days

 

Imbibing and hydrating (drinks):

Green juice. Chiang Mai style

Green juice. Chiang Mai style

Street coconut smoothie

Street coconut smoothie

Nothing fresher

Nothing fresher

Fresh pomegranate, please

Fresh pomegranate, please

I'm a fan

Natty Chang

 

Dining on all cuisines (lunch and dinner):

Pad thai for days

Pad thai for days

Fish balls ??

Fish balls ??

Lemongrass stuffed chicken

Lemongrass stuffed chicken

Seaweed and dippers

Seaweed and dippers

Seafood. Can't stop won't stop

Seafood. Can’t stop won’t stop

Heaven

Heaven

Refueling after 3 days of village life

Refueling after 3 days of village life

Real ramen. Thank you Bangkok airport

Real ramen. Thank you, Bangkok airport

 

What’s your most memorable meal abroad?

Prepcation

Okay okay okay. So I may be guilty of taking blogging reprieve #387, but there was positive intent behind it. A little R & R in South East Asia? I’ll take it

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I have to say I feel utterly rejuvenated. Fourteen days of mango sticky rice, street Pad Thai, 5 hour muddy treks, spa days, ornate temples, sleeping on village floors, luxurious hotels, and so on.

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After accomplishing a big career to-do and  being finished with the Thailand/Laos planning, I feel ready to really buckle down and focus on my next steps and “the plan.” I’m a wee bit guilty of over-planning  and overextending details of my life, but at the same time I so often get consumed by the daily commitments that my to-do lists will then repeat for months on end. Thus I’m back from my first truly self-sponsored vacation with a college bestie and ready to focus on what the twenty four year old me needs at this moment.

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Coinciding with this motivated self is a very confused body and circadian rhythm. I’m thirteen hours off and surely feeling it on the return much more than on the arrival. Given that there are fellow type A’s out there who similarly like to micromanage the transit woes, I thought I’d discuss some of my lessons learned for jet lag and travel.

 

Tricks of the international trade:

  • Avoid checking bags if possible. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve arrived bagless at my international destination, only to have my bag returned the day I’m returning home. Save yourself some anxiety…and money buying new underwear

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  • Master the traveling chic. It’s that happy medium between wearing your PJs and being stuck in an uncomfortable formal gown, so that you’re confident if you meet your future husband while sitting in 5D. And luckily  that spells leggings and a cardigan or pashmina throw for me
  • Keep the stewardess on speed-dial. The 3 oz cups of water they serve could not possibly hydrate a mouse. I’m in constant need of a refill and why wouldn’t I on a 10 hour flight? Hydration is key especially with the hand and foot swelling that takes place inflight
  • Pack a neck pillow for 6+ hour flights. This trip was my first time using a neck pillow (which deflates to fit in my bag I might add), and it was a saving grace. I didn’t arrive in Bangkok in need of a chiropractor. Hallelujah
  • Prep those snacks. I’ve starved one too many times on flights when faced with the mystery meat that frequents airlines meals nowadays. Given I’m the snack queen, I can tell you I had sustenance on hand for my 23 hour flight
    • A few ideas: water dense veggies and fruit, protein bars, dried fruit and nuts, sandwich for your next meal, miso soup packets, seaweed snacks, etc
  • Slip on a pair of thick socks. A friend suggested this to me before I left and boy was it a great tip. Sandals and flats are the ideal security shoe; however, when the temperature on the plane drops to 50 degrees slipping on a pair of warm socks helps you maintain whatever menial amount of heat you have retained
  • Move it. I am not someone who will advocate doing lunges and stretches down the aisle. I once witnessed a woman do a full blown yoga sun salutation in the aisle, complete with chatarangas and down dogs. I still cringe. However, I will suggest you move when you make your arrival. I know all you want to do is sleep but whether you go for a walk and explore the city or hop on the treadmill briefly, you’ll thank me because these are the steps (literally) your body needs to adjust
  • Stay present. Whether your luggage is lost or you accidentally drank the native water, you’re at your prized destination and that’s what matters

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Any travel tips?

Roons

I have to tell you that some magnificent, little bites of heaven have been on my mind–and a little too frequently than I’d care to admit.  There’s something elegant about macaroons, as if they should only be held in the chicest of hands, though it’s impossible to limit yourself to just one at a time. I may have just developed a palette for coconut but I’m certainly not hating it. What I’m not fond of is the $8+ package of macaroons at Whole Foods. A dollar per macaroon?? That’s too painful for my wallet, even for my coconut obsessed brain. Hence, why I decided to take matters into my hands.

 

Behold the macaroon experiment of 2013…

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I poured over a myriad of healthified macaroon recipes and decided to both adapt a few and test the variances.

 

The base of all of the macaroons was:

  • 1 egg white
  • 1 cup of shredded coconut

The variations included:

  • agave syrup
  • banana and agave syrup
  • banana

 

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Bake 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden.

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I have to say the banana was my favorite. Naturally sweet and fruity. But you can sweeten with agave or sugar to your heart’s content. Let me know what variations you try or think up!