Archive for September, 2012

Crossing Off My List {and a new PR!}

Happy Sunday morning to you all! 🙂

I’m taking a little time out of my normal Sunday morning routine to get a post up because I know I’ll be too busy the rest of the day to write. Lucky YOU! 😉

I have some good news! I finally get to cross something off of my recently made 30 Before 30 list!!! Any guesses??? I’ll give you a hint.

I got 1st place in a race! Now I can cross off “win a race” from my list! Of course, I only got 1st place in my age group (20-24), so my next goal needs to be 1st place OVERALL! 😉

This was the Tiger Roar Run 5k that benefited my high school’s new-ish (they started it about 3 years ago I think) cross country team and also went to help the American Heart Association.

The weather was perfectly cool and cloudy! I was hoping to PR this race but wasn’t going to be disappointed if I didn’t. My previous PR was 29:48, but the last time I ran a 5k (the Sunset 5k), my time was right at 30 minutes.

The race started out pretty fast with lots of little kids practically sprinting at the start. But I stayed in the back of the pack and tried to keep it slow for a little while. When I reached the first mile marker, I saw that my pace was around 10 minutes, which I was happy with, so then I picked it up a bit.

This is when I started passing more and more people. I kept up a fast pace during the second mile and saw that I was under 19 minutes by the end of mile two. This got me really excited because I knew that if I could keep it up for one more mile, then I’d PR!

So I did! I pushed myself through the last mile, sprinted down the hill at the end, and crossed the finish line a very happy person. 🙂

I never looked at the clock when I crossed because I was sprinting so fast, but I did get a time on my Nike+ app.

Wahoo!! Fasted 5k ever! I’m pretty sure that my official race time is higher, BUT even if my time was as high as 29 minutes, it’s still a PR!

I went and found my favorite cheerleader. He was so happy to be up early to watch me run. 😉

I also ran the 1 mile just for fun and to get in another mile since I wasn’t doing a long run for the day. Not sure what my time was?

After everything settled down, they got to the awards. I was hoping for a place in my age group, but I honestly wasn’t expecting to actually place 1st. I was pretty happy.
After everything was over, hubs and I decided to go to our favorite bakery for a celebratory breakfast.

We split that massive cinnamon roll and an apple turnover. They were both amazing!! Thanks Yummies! 🙂

We spent the morning doing nothing at all, ate a late lunch, napped a little, and then went our for a 4:00 movie. We saw “Looper,” and it was really good! Anyone else seen it?

I kept thinking how much the main actor looked like Joseph Gordon-Levitt. It wasn’t until we got home, and Chad looked on IMDB, that we realized it was him.

They wanted to make him look older and more like Bruce Willis I suppose. Anyway, it was an awesome movie!

Then we did something we almost never do…. we ordered pizza. And it was awesome. We sat out on our deck, ate pizza, and just enjoyed the cool weather. It was such a fun way to spend a Saturday!

And with that, I’m off to my church for the early service, and then Chad and I are going to sing a few songs for another church’s 11:00 service. Wish us luck, and have a wonderful Sunday! 🙂


September 30, 2012 at 9:01 am 7 comments

Thursday Thoughts {On The Challenge}

Okay guys, I’m a liar. I told you that I was going to have a WIAW post up showing my yummy food from the fair, but I let life get to me again and just couldn’t find the time. Remember, Wednesdays are my busiest days!

Anyway, I also realized that I only actually ate one thing at the fair which was a funnel cake. (You’re pretty much obligated to eat funnel cake at the fair). I guess I was thinking about all the food everyone else in my group ate?? Things like philly cheesesteaks, polish sausage sandwiches, footlong corndogs, ice cream cones, and fried snickers. Okay, now I’m hungry. So my WIAW post would have consisted of this.

Funnel cake and the most delicious lemonade EVER. We refilled that cup 3 times!

So since WIAW was a bust, let’s just get right into my Thursday Thoughts for the day. Today’s thoughts are all about my most recent challenge. I decided to try to overcome my calorie counting problem and go 5 days with absolutely NO counting. Here are the feelings I experienced throughout the five days.

Day 1: This feels weird

Day 2: Still weird, but feeling good.

Day 3: I think I like this.

Day 4: I really kind of love this.


Free at last free at last, thank God Almighty, I’m free at last!

This is literally how I feel! I am so glad that I took on this challenge so that I could prove to myself that calorie counting DID NOT control me. I am in control! (Well, technically, that would be God. But He keeps me in control)

Last week put everything into perspective for me. I can still eat healthy, and did, without counting every calorie that I eat. I feel like I can finally enjoy life without thinking “how many calories is that?” or “dang it, I went over my calories by 75 today” or even “ugh, I shouldn’t have eaten that cupcake. Those extra 350 calories are showing today.”

I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen more. I used to stick with the same kinds of meals over and over because they were “safe.” But now, I don’t worry about trying something new just because it has 100 or so extra calories than my normal dinners.

No one should live their life constantly counting calories. I understand though, that if you want to lose a significant amount of weight, then you do actually have to watch you calorie intake. But I’m not trying to lose 25 or 50 pounds. Sure I’d like to slim up, but I’m going to do that by continuing to eat healthy and exercising!

I actually want to send a thank you over to Lindsay (at Lindsay’s List) who inspired me to take on this challenge through one of her own 5 day challenges and through her post on her thoughts from the challenge. THANK YOU! 🙂

This challenge has been a great experience for me and has, dare I say, changed my life. 🙂

Now, on to less serious things!

Yesterday I had a 5 mile run to get done. I had missed a 3 miler on Tuesday because of sore legs, so thought this run wouldn’t be so bad. WRONG. It hurt, a lot. For some reason my quads were so stiff and so extremely sore. I had to walk a lot, and I usually don’t walk when running anything less than 7 or 8 miles. I was kind of bummed but still glad I got through it.

Today called for another 3 miles. I debated skipping this one too since my legs still felt pretty stiff, but I don’t have a long run on Saturday because I’m running a 5k, so I needed to get in the miles. It was still a tough run, but I’m blaming it on the weather. It’s gotten hot around here again, and I was running in almost 90 degree temps with not much shade from the sun. Bleh.

In other news, my breakfast this morning was extra yummy! I had my usual yogurt bowl that had plain Chobani, vanilla, cinnamon, pumpkin spice, chopped apple, peanut butter, and I topped it off with a new granola that I’ve been eying at the grocery store for a while.

I finally bought it this week and love it! I’m sure it’s no where near as good as the famous Love Grown brand, but for me it’s the best I could do!

One last thought for the day. I have a black toenail. You’re welcome for now showing you a picture. I’ve had it for a few weeks now. It doesn’t hurt, but it did when I first got it. I don’t really care that it’s black, in fact, I kind of like it. I think it means that I’m a true hardcore runner now. 🙂

And with that, I’m off to get some dinner ready for hubs and me.

September 27, 2012 at 6:04 pm 1 comment

Life Happens

Hello and happy Tuesday! 🙂

I meant to blog on Saturday and recap my thoughts on the challenge.

But, after running my longest distance ever of 10 miles….

….and having an all-day viewing party of The Walking Dead Season 2 with some friends…

Chili dogs and chips are the best post-run fuel! 😉

I never made it to the computer. Then Sunday came, and I meant to blog again.

But after singing in both church services…

….and taking our youth group to the fair for the afternoon…

…and winning fun prizes…

…and buying this awesome and hilarious phone case…

…I once again, didn’t make it to the computer.

Then it was Monday. I skipped my morning workout and decided to go after work. So, I planned to blog when I got home from the gym.

But when I got home, I got one of the worst migraine of my life and passed out on the couch until it went away. Then I had to get dinner ready for me and hubby, and after dinner there’s just no hope. So again, I didn’t make it to the computer.

Last night’s dinner. Tuna cakes and roasted veggies.

But today is TUESDAY! It’s a new day, and I’m feelin’ good…… I mean, I don’t have a migraine. And I’m finally able to sit down and write! 🙂

Well, it’s late Tuesday evening, and I’ve already been to work and gone grocery shopping this afternoon. (No running for me because I have sore legs from yesterday’s workout!)

Sometimes life happens, and you have to focus on more important things. Don’t get me wrong though, because the blog is very important to me, but sometimes it’s more important to step away, disconnect, and just have fun (or sleep away a migrain).

Come back tomorrow for a special What I Ate Wednesday FAIR FOOD Edition! I love food from the fair!! 🙂

I’m saving my recap of the challenge for my Thursday Thoughts post, so be on the lookout!!! 🙂

September 25, 2012 at 5:41 pm 5 comments

Thursday Thoughts

*Note: Recipe at the end of this post!*

Happy Thursday!! 🙂 One of my favorite days of the week!

And time for Thursday Thoughts!

1. I’m pretty much rocking the challenge! I’m still making healthy choices, but I’m not worried about having extra food if I’m still hungry because of the calories. I feel awesome and I’m rarely ever hungry! I don’t try to “save calories” during the day so that I can have enough for something sweet at night. I just eat! Usually my dessert is a 1 Minute Chocolate Cake or some “bloob goop.”

2. After listening to “Peter and the Wolf” twice a day for 2 weeks (during my 2nd grade classes), I can pretty much quote the entire story and hum every instrumental part of the music.

3. I had to run 5 miles between work and church yesterday. I started out slow, but it was still a really tough run at first. It wasn’t until I got to mile 4 that my legs felt loose and not like led.

I also got to see some of my kiddos while I was out! I ran by a house, heard some kids shouting, and saw that they were waving at me. I decided to stop and talk to them for a second, so it gave an excuse to take a break. 😉

4. I’m supposed to run 3 miles today, but my legs have been feeling so tired lately. I may opt for a little more rest this week in preparation for my first double digit run on Saturday. 10 miles!!!! Nervous is an understatement! I think an evening foam rolling and lounging in my compression socks will help prepare my legs. 🙂

5. I downloaded iOS6 last night. No major changes, but I like everything so far! The “do not disturb” feature is pretty cool, but couldn’t you just turn your phone off??? I think I’m most excited about the new Emojis. I sent this to Chad today when I found them.

6. I’m thinking about having tilapia for dinner tonight because we bought some during our last grocery trip, but I have no idea how to cook it??? We bought it frozen but not pre-cooked. Anyone with a really awesome recipe? Send it my way!!

7. The countdown until my birthday began yesterday. Husband officially has six weeks to decide what to get me! 😉

8. I’m going to be in Atlanta the weekend before my 1/2 marathon. So that means I’m going to have to find a way to run 12 miles, and I’m pretty sure that running 12 miles on a hotel treadmill is out of the question. Is there anyone out there that knows some good places to run in Atlanta??? Please email me! I desperately need some help with this one. Thanks!

9. Chad and I finally got our own cell phone plan and got off our parents’. We also got our first medical bill a few days ago. Now we’re officially grown-ups. 😦

10. I told you guys that I’d give you my recipe for Tuesday night’s tuna cakes, and here it is! This recipe only makes one serving, so double it if cooking for more!

1 4oz. can of tuna

1 egg or 1/4 cup egg substitute

1 tbs bread crumbs or flour

1/2 tsp garlic powder

salt and pepper to taste

Extra flour to lightly pat onto patties

Combine ingredients in a bowl and form into two patties/cakes. Pat a little flour on both sides of each cake. Place the cakes in a skillet set on medium. Make sure you spray some cooking spray or use a little olive oil in the skillet first. Cook on both sides until lighty brown.

These were SO easy to make and really delicious. You can change out the spices and seasonings to give them a different taste if you’d like! 🙂

September 20, 2012 at 6:20 pm 4 comments

WIAW {On Tuesday!}

It’s What I Ate Wednesday!

Thanks Jenn for hosting! 🙂

Usually I show you my food from Wednesady, but today I thought I’d share my food from Tuesday. *Gasp* 😉


Plain Chobani, vanilla, splenda, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, chopped apple, and almond butter to top it off!


Leftover pork chop from Monday night dinner, baby carrots, and a vanilla Oikos.

Afternoon Snack

Revolution protein bar from Pure Protein. LOVE this! Tastes like a snickers but with only 2g of sugar and 20g of protein!! I had this after my terrible run yesterday. 😉


I decided to get creative in the kitchen last night and made tuna cakes. Since I’m not counting calories, it was so much easier to experiment with different ingredients! They were delicious! I put the cakes on top of some cooked broccoli slaw and had a sweet potato on the side. I’ll post the recipe soon!


I actually had a mug of blueberries and almond butter warmed up in the microwave last night, but I wanted to show you guys the dessert I’ve been enjoying recently.

This would be CCK’s 1 Minute Chocolate Cake. I had to substitute a few ingreadients. Like regular flour instead of coconut flour, pumpkin instead of oil, and splenda instead of sugar. The cake itself comes out to be around 110 calories, but of course I like to add a little scoop of peanut butter on top! 🙂

Well, that’s litterally everything that I ate yesterday(minus my 3 cups of coffee and amino drink during my run).


Today is day 3 of the challenge, and we started out at the gym with the hubs working arms and chest.

 I’ve also got a 5 mile run to knock out this afternoon, so I know I’ll have to eat more calories to fuel myself. I’m actually thinking about eating dinner at church tonight. I usually bring my own dinner to be healthy, so I haven’t eaten a Wednesday night dinner in years! This will be a big step for me! Anyway, I also plan on being smart about my run this afternoon and start out slow. We’ll see how it goes!

Thanks for joining me on What I Ate Wednesday!

September 19, 2012 at 11:48 am 7 comments

Too Fast

Okay friends, so the challenge is going great so far! I feel like I have so much freedom. Why didn’t I do this earlier?? I can’t wait to see how I feel at the end of the week!

No food pictures today because I’m saving them for a WIAW post. But I do want to share my run from today.

All I had to do was run 3 miles. Easy! I’ve been doing 3 miles 2-3 times a week for the past 5 months. I decided to run outside after work because the weather was amazing! It felt nice and cool, even cool enough for me to run in a long sleeved, but lightweight, dry-fit! I was SO pumped to run outside. A little too pumped maybe? I started out pretty fast, but I guess I didn’t realize how fast until I got to mile 2 and hit a wall. A WALL. At mile TWO! I felt so stupid, but I pushed on slowly and got through the 3 miles. As soon as I was done, I checked my phone to see my splits (because I still don’t have a Garmin *hint hint Chad*). As you can see in the photo above, I ran the first mile in 9:29. Definitely too fast.

Now I know how easy it is to misjudge my pace when it’s not 90 degrees and humid. It was a good learning experience that will help me for my future outside runs this fall!

Chad, the new Garmin 10 would also help A LOT!!!! 😉

See y’all tomorrow for What I Ate Wednesday!

September 18, 2012 at 8:36 pm 5 comments

MIIM {A Distance Record}

Once again, I’m starting this Mavelous Monday after having a marvelous weekend! Thanks to Katie for the awesome link-up!

Friday night was spent eating with friends and hanging out back at our house for most of the night. My Saturdays are almost identical now. Wake up, drink coffee, eat a pancake, long run, recover, eat lunch, go shopping with husband. And that’s exactly what happened. I was most excited about my long run because I hit a PDR of 9 miles!! I had an awesome run and never felt the need for any sports beans. I just kept drinking water and chugging along. 🙂

Nine miles plus chocolate milk to refuel!

While husband and I were out, we went to the mall and, like teenagers, just hung out.

Sitting on a bench drinking diet lemondade from Chik-fil-a while he’s eating an ice dream.

Sunday was our normal church routine, and for the evening, we had a cookout for our youth. Burgers were grilled, duck-duck-goose was played, and kick-ball was “attempted” in our small lot.

A fun way to end such a marvelous weekend!


Today I officially started the challenge. Five days of not counting any calories. I’ll still be eating healthy, but I’m to prove to myself that I can do this without obsessing over every single calorie.

So far, so good. But it’s only day 1.

This morning I started off with a cup of coffee before heading to the gym. Hubby and I did legs today, and mine definitely still feel like jello! I made sure to drink some amino before and during our workout. Afterwards, I had a protein shake and made my usual egg white omelet. It looks awful, but tasted fine.

I packed my lunch like I always do, and it included some grilled chicken, sliced cucumber, and a blueberry Chobani. Sorry, no picture. 😦

My afternoon snack was a Quest Bar. These are so great, and they keep me SO full! I love them!

Chocolate brownie flavor is SO good warmed up in the microwave!

Husband has meetings tonight, so I had to fix dinner a little early. I decided on pan searing some pork chops and roasting some brussels sprouts and okra. It turned out delicious!

Now picture this…. kitchen is clean, dishes are done, tomorrow’s lunch is prepped, morning coffee is preset, and it’s only 6:45. Fabulous! I’ll be spending the rest of the evening curled up on the couch by myself. Well not technically by myself. It’s me and my four furry friends. Oh yeah, did I forget to mention that we’re dog-sitting for my in-laws while they’re in Disney World? (Let’s forget about the fact that I’m insanely jealous and wish I was there with them!)

Meet Speedy (the black one) and Winston (the white one). They are both tiny little nuggs and don’t really do anything beside lay around, eat, and pee/poop. Sometimes it’s hard to even get Winston to come out from under the bed. 😉

Anyway, the challenge is going good, but it’s so hard for me to not think about the amount of calories I’m eating because I’ve been trying to lose a few pounds. BUT, I know that this is more important for me right now. I’m tearing down this idol and going from being controlled (by the counting) to being in control. YAY ME!

Time for something sweet! 🙂 Have a great night!

September 17, 2012 at 7:45 pm 1 comment

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Hello, I'm Grace! I'm a 24 year old living in a small town in Alabama. I'm married and have the most amazing job teaching music to elementary students. I blog about healthy eating, exercising, running, and the random things that happen in my life. I've recently completed my second half marathon and can't wait to pursue that 26.2!

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