Recent Meals + Cold Stone + DIY Iced Passion Tea

I am so happy to have a functioning keyboard on a laptop right now!

You don’t realize how important each and every letter on a keyboard is until one of them stops working.

I’m successfully set up on my new Mac (which was not easy but I won’t get into it) and ready to talk about recent meals and whatever else I have going on in my food world.

Let’s rewind to last Friday night when I had dinner at Cipollini.

Cipollini is definitely one of my favorite Long Island restaurants.


Zucchini linguine is still one of my go-to orders when out for dinner and I see it on the menu.

zucchini linguine

I had a cup of decaf coffee with below chocolate tarte dessert which I thought about after my run on Saturday when I didn’t feel well.

As I mentioned in Monday’s post, I had to cut that run short because I didn’t feel right. This was the first time I’ve needed to cut a run short like that since the 2014 Fitness Magazine Half Marathon.

My cup of decaf coffee at night was the only thing I can think of that may have been out of the ordinary for me prior to a run. I always drink coffee in the morning before a run, but never a cup at night? Could it have dehydrated me or something, even though it was decaf? I truly do not know, all know is that I didn’t feel well suddenly while running which was not at all normal for me. I was totally fine once I stopped running and have felt fine since that run, but still, it was so weird for me!

chocolate tart

In other news, I recently mentioned that Trader Joe’s is always out of romaine lettuce. I finally asked WTF and was informed that Trader Joe’s is switching romaine lettuce suppliers which may be causing the issues. On this particular day of food shopping, I was not going to Whole Foods too so I grabbed the Southwest Chopped Salad Mix from Trader Joe’s just to have some sort of salad in the house.

I used the Southwest Salad chopped salad mix to create the below salad and added tomatoes, cucumbers, avocado, and Dr. Praeger’s veggie burger. It was quite good.

It would have been nice to have romaine lettuce in the house to make a salad when I was having a slice of Ezekiel toast smothered in vegetable cream cheese.

You know that if I crave anything, it’s vegetable cream cheese, right? Random I know, but vegetable cream cheese is a major favorite and major craving for me.

While I don’t eat vegetable cream cheese on a regular basis, I do eat it when the cravings hit, which is typically in the summer.

vegetable cream cheese

Check out this giant chopped salad from Town Bagel! It was SO BIG. I wish I remembered what I chose as my ingredients. I’m guessing it included my usual combo of tomato, cucumber, beets, chickpeas, roasted cauliflower, avocado, hearts of palm, and likely a few other vegetables.


It had been FOREVER since I last had Cold Stone Creamery! Who remembers my weekly obsession with Cold Stone creations?!

I didn’t get a waffle bowl this time but I did get a Like It size with vanilla yogurt, cookie dough, chocolate chips, whipped cream, and hot fudge.

cold stone

And finally, can we please discuss who I think I am making my own Starbucks Iced Passion Tea?!

I bought the Tazo Passion Tea Bags and find it extremely quick, easy, and cheap to make my own Passion Iced Tea at home.

I add a squeeze of lemon and pour it all into this nice pink cup that I bought at Target.

iced passion tea

While I can’t give you a specific recipe that I use to make my DIY Starbucks Iced Passion Tea (I am really basic about it), there are so many variations of recipes available if you search the internet. Here’s one site that offers a few variations on the Passion Iced Tea to try. 

WIAW- Long Run Day Eats


Let’s take a look at what I ate on Saturday since it was the day of my long run (15 miles). If you missed my weekly workout recap post on Sunday, click here to catch up on my workouts and latest race registration!



The usual pre-run small bowl of oatmeal with cinnamon, some banana and peanut butter.


I am often asked how much I eat before I run and the answer is, I do not know. It’s usually less than a full bowl of oatmeal, half a banana and small amount of peanut butter because I run/workout fairly close to when I finish eating.

If I feel hungry after I eat, I wait a few minutes. If I am still hungry, I take a little bit more but try to keep it to truly “a little bit” because I do not want a digestion/ stomach ache issue while I am running.

For a race morning however, I do eat a full bowl of oatmeal with peanut butter (plus some banana sometimes) since I have more time to digest and must ensure I do not get hungry.

I usually get my pre-run fueling right but for this long run, I actually got hungry in the middle which was not okay at all! The raisins I bring with me as mid-run fuel are not for my appetite but for my energy.

My post-run oatmeal in a jar contained extra of everything since I was really hungry.

oats in a jar

Cooked (cold) oatmeal mixed with A TON of berries, Skoop B-Strong (obsessed with this protein powder) and peanut butter.

I got back into bed for a bit after eating and brought my coffee with me.

pro compression


After lying around and doing some work, I knew I was too hungry to leave the house without eating lunch. I made a smoothie bowl which is basically the same as my breakfast only blended up with the addition of spinach and almond milk.


In the mix:

  • Cooked oatmeal
  • Frozen blueberries
  • Frozen pineapple
  • Spinach
  • Skoop B-Strong
  • Almond Milk
  • Ice

Topped with swirls of peanut butter of course.

I may not have had lunch at Red Mango but I got really lucky when the shopping center I was in had a Red Mango and they were giving out samples of their new acai bowls! The sample was delicious, I must go back this week to order it for lunch.

acai bowl

Doesn’t everyone keep watermelon in their purse in case of a watermelon craving emergency?


I was going to get my hair highlighted and got nervous I would get hungry so I stopped at Trader Joe’s for an emergency package of watermelon.


We ended up at the last minute deciding to go to the West East Bistro which serves an all organic and locally-sourced menu.

We started with veggie rolls which contained fresh local vegetables served with sriracha on the side which we subbed with hoisin sauce because we like that better.

Sean, the manager, gave us lots of details on the food and assured me the rolls were not deep fried, only pan fried, as they don’t deep fry anything.


I custom ordered a vegetable stir fry with brown rice (can you see the purple carrots?)


I also ordered a side of avocado to top off my stir fry because everything is better with avocado.


It had been way too long since I had a chocolate dipped waffle bowl from Cold Stone Creamery. I can’t even recall the last time I had one (I will have to go through my old blog posts to get an accurate date on this) and that’s just not acceptable.

cold stone

I had them mix the chocolate and vanilla yogurts with chocolate chips, hot fudge and whipped cream. But really, it’s all about the bowl.

My appetite after running 15 miles this time around wasn’t all that different from any other day of the week. Some long runs make me ravenous and some just don’t.

Overall lately, I do not have extreme hungry days and I attribute that directly to how quickly I refuel after every workout and how much I eat at that time. Bigger post run breakfasts and making sure I eat when I am hungry make a huge difference for me.

Be sure to check out what everyone else is eating today!

[bctt tweet=”Long run day eats #wiaw #longrun #running #recenteats #coldstone #redmango #acai #oatmeal”]


Are you an acai bowl fan?

How quickly after your workouts do you eat?

What’s your emergency snack lately in your bag?


What We Ate – Birthday Edition

It isn’t often that you find people who actually care to hear you ramble on about a fudge cake or a delicious restaurant.


In fact, my friends and family often look at me funny when I take cake selecting and restaurant menus so seriously.

I’m so glad you share in my excitement just so I can recap my son’s birthday with you in food on this What I Ate Wednesday.

Let’s start with Sunday brunch which happened at The Smith in Manhattan. I took the birthday boy to the city for the day to enjoy the fall weather, some good food and birthday shopping.

He is realizing that I am super cool because I take him to trendy places which require reservations even at 11:30 am and serve BLT & E’s on croissants with mounds of French fries.

croissant blt

I went with an Ahi Tuna Salad thing plus the mandatory side of roasted Brussels Sprouts.

ahi tuna

I have learned to request my roasted vegetables extra crispy. Make sure you do the same.

roasted brussels sprouts

I was hoping for dessert at The Smith because I spotted several other tables ordering the plates of warm donuts but my son was full so we decided to start walking around and pick up a dessert a bit later in the day.

After the NHL Store, we found ourselves in the Magnolia Bakery.

magnolia bakery

I just feel the need to say that every time my son and I walk around the city I make it a point to remind him how lucky he is to hang out in Manhattan as if it is nothing while people around the world dream of coming here and plan travel vacations to do the things we do on a regular basis.

Sometimes people, including myself as a child, take living here for granted and I want him to appreciate and somehow understand this concept.

One thing we don’t do on a regular basis is order banana pudding for dessert but I suggested that he try it since Magnolia is kinda famous for it.

magnola bakery banana pudding

The dessert side of my brain thinks only in chocolate but I must say, this banana pudding thing was pretty tasty.

It was like eating frosting and cake crumbs with a spoon and the banana part didn’t jump out at me like oh, you are eating bananas for dessert. Do I even make sense?! Just try it, you will see what I mean.

If that wasn’t enough for the sweet tooth, we headed to the candy section of FAO Schwartz (FAO Schweetz) shortly after the banana pudding.

fao schweetz

I spent more money on a bag of candy than I care to admit but it was for his birthday and I couldn’t say no.

Birthdays mean lots of sweet things which is exactly why I needed to load up the birthday cake pancakes Monday morning for breakfast since it was his actual birthday.

birthday cake pancake batter

I was short on time so I used Kodiak Cakes pancake mix instead of taking the from-scratch route. I added to the mix some mashed banana, mini dark chocolate chips and lots of sprinkles to make the pancakes look all funfetti and birthday party-ish.

birthday cake pancakes

With Mighty Maple peanut butter spread between each pancake layer and extra bananas and chocolate chips on top to make up for the fact that I was out of whipped cream which I usually use on top of the stack for birthday pancake breakfasts.

birthday cake pancakes

Birthdays on a Monday aren’t always fun but I made sure that we continued to celebrate after school.

After a trip to the Nike Store so that my son could use a birthday gift card, we stopped at Vincent’s Clam Bar for dinner.

meatballs and lasagna

Lots of parmigiana happened on my son’s plate while I opted for the Zucchini Marinara which I requested to include primavera vegetables to make it a bigger and more satisfying meal.

zucchini primavera

And of course I ordered the Burnt Broccoli (extra burnt) because I am a sucker for roasted vegetables.

burnt broccoli

It doesn’t matter how many vegetables I consume which tend to make my stomach fuller than full, I always have a separate area reserved for dessert, especially cake.

cold stone birthday cake

After serious cake contemplating, I went with a custom-ordered Cold Stone Creamery layer cake.

cold stone birthday cake

I know you want all of the details:

The ice cream flavors:

  • Chocolate Fudge Truffle
  • French Vanilla

The Mix-In’s:

  • Peanut Butter Cups
  •  Cookie Dough
  • Chocolate Chips

The Cake layers:

  • Devil’s Food

The Frosting:

  • Chocolate Ganache with chocolate shavings

On Top:

  • Cookie Dough
  • Peanut Butter Cups

cold stone birthday cake

Just admit that you want me in charge of your next birthday cake.

I should probably set up a business of cake selecting. I don’t want to be in charge of making it, just selecting, designing and ordering someone else around on how to make it.

Like a cake architect if you will.

cold stone birthday cake

The only problem with me in charge is that I will probably help myself to half of the cake.

A few slices (literally) of this cake Monday night fueled me up real nice for Tuesday morning’s run.

Worth every bite.

Be sure to check out what everyone else is eating today!


Ever have the banana pudding from Magnolia Bakery?

What candy/toppings would you have ordered mixed in to your Cold Stone Creamery cake?

Do you have a favorite restaurant you like to go to for special occasions?


Run Like Someone Is Chasing You


I have finally matured enough to be able to see the bright side to an almost-sad ice cream situation.

Normally when Cold Stone Creamery is out of my favorite chocolate-dipped waffle bowls, I complain, huff and then puff, complain again and then storm out.

cold stone creamery sundae

Saturday night however, I realized that no waffle bowl meant no chance of any part of my sundae breaking off and dropping to the ground as it did on National Ice Cream Day.

That was really traumatizing I tell you.

Instead I ordered waffle cone pieces mixed in for the crunch factor along with the usual chocolate chips, whipped cream and hot fudge.

So I am up early chatting with you on this Labor Day morning because I am leaving shortly to run that five-mile race in Long Beach.

It sure feels like it was yesterday that I ran the ten-mile race  on Memorial Day yet somehow it’s already Labor Day and time to run this race again.

Since this race is only five miles, I still ran long (13.1 miles) on Saturday per the usual routine.

running path

I had the running path in my neighborhood pretty much to myself aside from the usual dog walkers until around mile nine when I noticed that same guy who randomly decides to run coming up the path behind me.


I know better than to look behind me while running and even thought of Cait’s cute from cartoon from the other day where I told her I ONLY watch for approaching shadows but this time, I saw him somehow out of the corner of my eye catching up to me from behind.

Mile nine was not exactly where I felt like kicking things into some high gear but I just could not let him pass me.

He never has and he never will.

Yes, I realize there is something wrong with me and even if I didn’t, my father told me so after telling him this story.

I picked up my pace and ran like someone was chasing me, which in my mind, I think he really was. He was going faster than usual.

Of course, his fast is still not faster than me. Ha. It’s a great feeling.

Running tip: If you want to run faster, get someone to chase you.

I may need that guy to run this race with me today. Last year’s finish time for this race of 39 minutes (and some seconds, I forget exactly) doesn’t seem like it will happen for me today, but who knows, right?

We shall see.

You should know that it isn’t easy to sign up for races as a single mom.

I don’t run many races yet the races I do select involve an extra thought process of figuring out if my son will be with his dad that day and if not, are my parents around to help me out.

My parents came with us for the weekend when I ran the Hershey Park Half Marathon so that someone would be with my son while I ran the race.

I always want to run the Disney races because it would be so fun for us to go but the logistics always prevent me from signing up and I would never run a Disney race without bringing my son along for the fun.

I was so excited to learn yesterday via this article that the Rock ‘n’ Roll races have started a babysitting option called Race Kids.

As an insane mom, I wouldn’t trust just anyone with my son but this would be something of interest for me and I sure hope that more races (like Disney!) would begin to implement something similar!

Geez, I am so busy chatting that I didn’t realize the time and must get myself moving and out the door. Before I go, you must check out this link for 200 Recipes For Football Season. I love Jessica and her recipes are just ridiculous.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


If you are a parent, what do you do with your kids when you run races?

Best dessert you ate all weekend?

Anyone run a race this weekend? How did it go?





Long Beach City Manager’s 10 Mile Race Recap 2014



Happy Memorial Day!


oatmeal with berries

My breakfast looks all festive, doesn’t it? Trust me, I didn’t do it on purpose.

I hope the weather by you is as beautiful as the weather is here in New York at the moment.

long beach ny

Now how could a race be anything but great when you are running in these conditions?

I have to say – I actually enjoyed running the ten mile race. Usually I decide I enjoyed a race AFTER the race. This time, during the race my thoughts were filled with happiness.

It was a gorgeous morning, not a cloud in the sky and about 60 degrees at the start.

long beach 10 mile race

I can’t tell you how nice it was to pick up my number and just hang around town without a chill to the air that can make you want to bounce up and down to keep warm while you wait for the start.

race number

In the back of my mind though I knew that once we started running, I would warm up twenty degrees bringing the feel-like temperature to eighty degrees which was a bit warm at this point in the season.

The race started right on time and I was off. I felt terrific aside from the fact that I began the race feeling as though I needed to use the bathroom. I had used the bathroom at the Long Beach Rec Center and thought there would be a Port-O-Potty at the start line so that I could go again but there wasn’t.

I tried not to think about it much but I did have to go.

I wanted to pace myself but of course I started out fast but it didn’t feel fast. In fact, during the first mile I knew I could go faster but resisted.

I believe my first mile was 7:18 <—too fast. But I didn’t care.

I told myself to just run and be happy.

Happy that it was a gorgeous day.

Happy that it was the start of the summer season down at the beach with a fully replaced boardwalk after Hurricane Sandy.

Happy to run the streets I have grown up around with so many memories since I was little girl.

Happy that my skirt felt like it wasn’t even there; the waistband sat in such a perfect place, didn’t slide or move and the bike shorts fell to a perfect spot on my legs without bothering me.

And best of all, happy that I can decide last minute to run a ten mile race without thinking twice.

A portion of the race occurred on the Long Beach boardwalk.

long beach boardwalk

I even snapped a quick picture for you while I was running. I was shocked that it came out as well as it did, I figured it would be blurry since I was moving pretty fast at this point.

I ran the boardwalk fast because I wanted it to be over. As pretty as it looks, there is no shade and it was hot.

On a side note, never wear heels on a boardwalk. I couldn’t help but think of this while I was running.


I once broke a pair of sandals (Chanel sandals no less) because of the little gaps in the boardwalk planks. As Amanda would say, Le Boo.

My point in telling this story is that my mind was a bit more free during this race to think about the sandals I broke a few summers ago and what Amanda would say rather than be focusing on the usual crazy thoughts that go through my mind while running a race.

Normally my thought process consists of insane thoughts like why do I run, I will never run a race again and I can’t wait for it to be over.

Sure, I was ready to cross the finish line but I was really taking it all in. I didn’t force myself to try to fly faster than I was going.

I let myself slow for water at several of the stops because I was thirsty and it was really hot. I was not looking to be a hero.

I was simply looking to run a darn good race and to enjoy it.

I popped my jelly beans but didn’t finish them. My time at the five-mile mark was 39 minutes and some seconds which was fast enough.

I am pretty sure I slowed a bit after that but I didn’t care. I felt great and kept thinking that.

And yeah, I couldn’t help but take note once again of the difference of how I felt in this race compared to the Fitness Magazine Half that I couldn’t finish. That race still bothers me even though I know I legitimately didn’t feel well with good reason.

My GPS was off by almost a quarter of a mile after the first few miles which got to be annoying. It would tell me a mile mark yet I still had several steps to go to cross the race mile marks.

I finished the race just under 1:23. I was hoping to run it under 1:20 but I am more than satisfied. I factor in the slowing for water and slowing for going up and down the boardwalk ramps and the heat so it’s all good.

The race finish was on the bay side but it was so gorgeous outside that I walked a cool down over to the ocean and the boardwalk to eat my watermelon. I always pack some post-race snacks in a cooler in the car. I can’t trust what a race will provide.


And then I ran a bit more up and down the boardwalk before heading home.

So the Nike skirt. You need it.

race outfit

Please excuse my post-race appearance.

I know we are all built differently so I can’t say for sure that the skirt will make you as happy as it made me but I do recommend you try it on.

I want to say I even like it more than the Lulu Pace Setter skirts I already have. The Nike skirt is much lighter in weight (I didn’t even realize the Lulu skirt was heavy) and the pocket in the front where I keep my jelly beans was easier to access while running.

The Nike website has the Stretch Woven skirts on sale. I didn’t see the black-on-black on the site but they have the black skirt with what looks like yellow bike shorts underneath.

If you buy it from the store, they have a thirty-day return policy so if you try it and don’t like it, you can return it.

I haven’t decided if I will order another one because one may be enough. I can still wear the Lulu skirts and would rather do more laundry and save my money for other important things.

Like ice cream.

cold stone creamery

My son and I are off to the beach this morning. Enjoy the rest of your long weekend!


Are you having great weather this weekend?

Do you stop for water during a race or do you carry your own bottle?

If you are cooking/baking anything for a barbecue today, please share the recipe in the comments!






Back-to-Back Long Runs


When I heard on Friday that my son’s little league game was switched to 9:00 am Saturday morning (meaning you are on the field at 8:30 am) instead of 3:30 pm in the afternoon, I was less than pleased.

little league

I don’t think the coaches really cared or understood that Saturday morning is my long run morning.

Naturally a morning person, I had some maneuvering to do in order to make my run happen and still have time to shower and eat all before making it to the field for the start of the game.

On a side note, I always factor in my time to eat. Don’t you love the people who tell you they haven’t eaten all day because they had no time? I just don’t understand. Like, I don’t get it at all.

I toyed with different ideas and scenarios such as running super fast to get the miles done sooner (not ideal for a long run since a long run is about endurance not speed), I could skip the run (ha, not happening), I could run later in the day (totally not happening), reschedule the run for another day or just run fewer miles.

I chose to get up an hour earlier and run just ten miles. I love when I say just ten as if that’s nothing. It’s something, trust me.

But, as I made the decision to run ten and since that is less than the usual, I conjured up the idea of running back to back ten-mile runs for the weekend.

Simultaneously in that thought I questioned why I couldn’t just hold off on the long run until Sunday altogether but then I realized I am a runner who is nutty who feels the need to run long on Saturday because it’s what I do and if I didn’t, I risk throwing off my entire equilibrium.

I actually liked running earlier than normal on Saturday (I actually squeezed in 11 miles). It’s almost as if you bang out a bunch of miles before you normally begin making it as if they were given to you without you doing anything. Does that make any sense?

I didn’t love bouncing back out the door to get the day going but I felt really good. I made sure not to sit in the bleachers for the two-hour game because I felt like that would stiffen my legs and make me miserable.

Not that standing on my feet for two hours was too terrific but the game was good and my son played well and we got to eat lunch right after so I was happy.

red mango parfait

I don’t always run on Sundays and if I do, it is usually a shake-out run. But, my mind was set on ten miles even with the extra one thrown in on Saturday.

I kept the pace easy after running on Saturday but I must admit, I didn’t even feel as though I ran on Saturday.

shadow from running

In fact, both days were rather pleasant. The types of runs where you feel as though you were sleeping to then wake up and question where you have been for the last several miles.

Kind of like when you are driving and suddenly end up on your street and wonder how it is you got there and if you were actually paying attention to the road. I mean, you totally are paying attention yet you get so lost in thought you forget what you are doing?

True story – A few months after we moved a bunch of years ago, I automatically drove straight up the driveway of our old house without thinking what I was doing. I guess I was on autopilot.

Good thing I didn’t try to unlock the front door.

Anyway, other than running, I literally ran all over the place with so many things to do. It’s that time of year, isn’t it? Always somewhere to be, something to do, something to spend money for…

It’s fine though. As long as I fit my long run in to the schedule, no one gets hurt.

And of course, as long as I can fit in dessert, we are all good.

cold stone sundae

I haven’t the slightest idea why Cold Stone sometimes decides to chocolate dip their bowls without a final dip into the rainbow sprinkles. I ask them and they just stare at me as if no one has ever questioned this before or maybe because it makes them realize they forgot a step and they feel ashamed. I don’t know.

And to go with the trend of a bazillion things to do in the month of May and June, today I get to attend a play-type thing at my son’s school for a few hours.

My plan is to see how many voices and faces I can recognize from those children who infiltrate my house via facetime all day and night.

Kids today live in a totally different world I tell you…


What time of day do you run?

Are you ever so busy you skip a meal or do you always make time to eat?

Favorite ice cream/yogurt topping?

Ever drive to the wrong house not realizing what the heck you were doing?



Put Away Your Measuring Cup


I try not to dwell on things but part of me will forever live in fear of hitting publish and losing most of my post again.

I am damaged for blogging life I tell you.

The worst part about technological mishaps is that there is rarely an explanation.

Oh, you lost your post? It happens. Your system shut down without warning? It happens. Your phone deleted its contacts? We don’t know why but it happens.

To make it even worse, technology just stares at you. No response as I slam my coffee mug (not smart by the way), shout obscenities and consider crying.

Anyway, I had a totally different post in mind for today (which included an awesome easy recipe) but something happened that we need to discuss immediately because the words are just boiling up and I need to release them.

Someone I know (who is very much in crazy good shape) posted a picture on facebook of her meal along with a phrase like,

“I sometimes wish this was pizza”.

The picture was of a precisely measured portion of grilled chicken, an exact serving of quinoa and a measured serving of a plain, steamed vegetable.

My immediate reaction was sadness followed closely by rage. My rage wasn’t so much against her, more so against the trend I keep seeing towards dieting, restricting and measuring of food.

th (6)

Please put down your measuring cup for a moment and hear me out….

If you truly want a slice of pizza, have a slice of pizza. Incorporating the things you enjoy and crave into your lifestyle will not undo all of your hard work.

It is your overall lifestyle that matters, not one meal or one food craving you allow yourself to eat.

Notice I say lifestyle and not diet. Diet to me is another one of those negative words.

th (2)

Diet is often associated with limiting your food choices, restrictive behaviors, giving up the foods you love for measured out plates of bland food that never satisfy the appetite.

It is my opinion that most diet plans are not maintainable long-term and so many of them are not even good for you.

I realize that it may sound easy for me to say all of these things since I do not need to lose weight but I was once a chubby child who liked to eat. I still like to eat. I am a volume eater and want to be full and not feel restricted or  forever limited to small servings of food on my plate.

At some point I realized that my plate can be full and satisfying. I don’t need to feel restricted if I learn the nutrient-rich foods to eat on a regular basis all balanced out with my cravings, activity level and mood. Yes, my mood has a say in what I eat.

I never followed Weight Watchers but there is a reason vegetables (and most fruits) are unlimited and point-less.

Produce is not the detrimental part of your plate keeping your pants from fitting. The extra serving of broccoli is not what is packing on your extra pounds or causing you to remain four sizes bigger than you want to be.


I get wild when I hear of people measuring out vegetables. Unless you are protecting yourself from the stomach pains and bloating associated with too much fiber (I hear that!) or have a medical issue (I don’t want to interfere with that!) put away your measuring cup.

Measuring out your spinach along side a small portion of protein and a barely-there portion of a carbohydrate most likely isn’t satisfying your appetite which leaves you with cravings and eventually an uncontrollable binge, or worse, the tendency to keep reverting back to old habits of repeated unhealthy stops at McDonald’s for the value meal deal plus a side of chicken nuggets and a shake.

The diet plans that tell you how to limit your portion sizes or restrict certain food groups are limiting your caloric intake. And maybe you do need to cut back if you are trying to lose weight but cutting back too much is not healthy either.

When you take in too few calories, you can actually slow your metabolism which makes your body hold on to each morsel of food rather than use it as fuel that becomes burned off through your activities and organ functions (it requires calories to make your liver and kidneys and heart do what they need to do).

th (5)

By not eating enough, you can actually gain weight rather than lose.

Not to mention, consuming too few calories only leaves you hungry and moody and mean.

Eating too little, giving up food groups (for caloric reasons) or the foregoing of occasional indulgences that you love and crave send you straight into a restrict and then binge which becomes very hard to cycle break.

You know the whole saying you want what you can’t have? It doesn’t just apply to the guy who won’t text you back.

When you suddenly make certain foods off-limits and combine that with not eating enough to fuel your body, your cravings are going to kick in and your ability to eat a balanced diet goes out the window.

You get down on yourself for being unable to adhere to your plan and begin to think something is wrong with you when in fact, it isn’t you at all, it is the diet plan, the food restrictions and those darn measuring cups.

I have said this before and will say it again because I think about it every day –

I would rather be a few pounds more (not that I know what I weigh) than live a life restricting my appetite, giving up a good dessert or avoiding a glass of wine when out for dinner all just to wear a smaller size or see crazy muscle definition in my abs or my arms or even my legs.

I don’t believe Jewish thighs are allowed to have definition anyway. It might be against our religion or just not kosher or something.

If I want to be really honest here, I actually love the way I look.

I had a baby and watched my body revert back to a small size with a stomach that may not be rock solid but certainly does not look like a baby was once inside.

But, even if I had baby signs on my abs, so what? I am a proud mother. I am going to be 36 soon and can wear jean shorts just fine. I know, I need to get mom shorts, I am working on finding what mom shorts are.

Am I perfect? Perfection is not possible… but happiness is.

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Speaking of happiness, today is Friday which means it is the weekend which means I will use the Cold Stone Creamery Gift Card I received for Mother’s Day.

cold stone creamery gift card

Have a great weekend!


Talk to me about your thoughts on measuring all of your food all of the time.

Which fad diet have you tried? Which have worked?

What routine of eating/exercise works for you the best?

And, who is running a race this weekend?!




WIAW- Why Are Blueberries So Expensive?


Oh hello. It’s raining. And pouring. Thankfully, no one around my house is snoring. I have no patience for such a sound.


Let’s take a look at what I have been eating this week. I changed up the usual format to keep things interesting…

Breakfast Lately:


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Important things to note:

*I am still on oatmeal every morning; a bowl with fruit and peanut butter before my run and another bowl with a scoop of plain greek yogurt after my run.

*I splurged this week and bought the tiniest container of fresh blueberries. I can’t deal with the price of blueberries these days but couldn’t pass up this container because they looked so plump and fresh.

I am trying not to nibble on them as I assemble my breakfast just to make the blueberries last but who are we kidding? This little container is barely a handful.


Lunch Lately:

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No surprise here. Either Red Mango parfaits (usually a weekend treat) or my favorite chick pea/avocado mash on Ezekiel Cinnamon Raisin Toast.

Nothing getting old here anytime soon.


Dinner Lately:

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Top left – Cauliflower stir fry with chick peas, black beans, brown rice and avocado

Top right – My son’s dinner: chicken marinated in Island Soyaki with brown rice alongside the Chicken Shu Mai from Trader Joe’s

Bottom left – My son’s pizza made with whole wheat pizza dough along with sweet potato wedges cooked in the oven at the same time.

Bottom right – Plant-Based Power Bowl with sweet potato wedges, chick peas and avocado

Important things to note:

*I tend to mix fresh roasted vegetables with frozen vegetables every night. My stomach can sometimes have a hard time digesting too many vegetables, especially the fresh ones. Creating a balance between fresh vegetables and the frozen varieties solves this problem and gives me the best of both worlds.

*My son really liked the Chicken Shu Mai so I will be buying it again.

*The pizza and sweet potatoes were not served together in the above picture but my plan is to make a pizza topped with sweet potatoes in the next few days. I have used sweet potato in the past as a base ingredient for a crust but this time it is going on top. I love roasted butternut squash on pizza so why not sweet potatoes? Just may be the perfect pre-race dinner Saturday night.



I am not a huge snacker which may be why I often forget to include any mention of snackage in my posts. I nibble while I cook, I slice up carrots while I am in the kitchen and lately enjoy the mandarin oranges in the morning.

If I am truly hungry though, rather than snack I go with mini meals such as a slice of Ezekiel bread with peanut butter and fruit, apple slices with peanut butter or just declare it lunch or dinner time regardless of what the clock says.

On more than one occasion I have been known to eat my lunch by 11:00 am or dinner by 4:00 pm. This works for my every time and never leaves me any hungrier than if I would have waited until an “appropriate” dining hour.

Who says what’s appropriate anyway? I say go by your own clock and appetite.


I still love my usual nighttime desserts but Monday night, I needed something serious. Something big and delicious, something made for me exactly how I wanted it without any effort my part. Something that involved true chocolate and whipped cream and everything in between.

cold stone creamery sundae

I didn’t really care that it was Monday. Most people “get back on track” after the weekend and while that’s all fine and good, sometimes you need a treat and can’t go by the calendar.

My hungry days and cravings hit sometimes without true rhyme or reason and this week it occurred Sunday into Monday. I knew Monday afternoon that a serious dessert was in order to nip that hungry thing in the bud.

You can certainly try to fulfill the hunger with extra plates of dinner, extra servings of fruits, vegetables, spoons of peanut butter or larger than normal evening snacks but I find that getting a nice big sundae in a chocolate dipped waffle bowl will do the trick all in one shot without fail.

I went with Cold Stone Creamery’s new Cherry Vanilla yogurt which is simply amazing when combined with chocolate chips,  whipped cream, hot fudge and of course, the thickly coated chocolate dipped waffle bowl.

Not to mention, the chunks of real cherries make this the perfect runner’s recovery meal. I mean, cherries are known for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties so I did my body good, don’t you think?

Be sure to check out what everyone else is eating this week!


Which do you prefer  – fresh or frozen vegetables?

How expensive are the blueberries by you? When the heck will the good sales begin?

What do you eat to satisfy your hungry days?


WIAW – Then…And Now


I have an interesting twist for this week’s What I Ate Wednesday fun.


The other day, my friend went through his email archives and came across a survey I once completed long ago.

When I say long ago, I mean September 22, 2000.

I was fresh out of college, working my first job in the promotions industry, 22 years old and one month away from being engaged.

I thought it would be fun to check out some of the highlights from the survey to see how my tastes have changed (or remained the same) over the past fourteen years….

1. Coffee or Coffee Ice Cream?

My reply in September 2000: Neither.

Um, excuse me? Do I know this former self? Neither?

I will never like coffee ice cream but hello, do I not live on coffee as if it is filtered through my faucets?

Looking back, I started drinking coffee shortly after completing this survey and once my son was born, caffeine was my mandatory addiction. In fact, just last week I was saying how I need to start limiting my cups of coffee.


I picked up this Yogi Ginger tea at Trader Joe’s a few days ago and while it isn’t coffee, it is quite satisfying.

2. Favorite foods?

September 2000: Chocolate, m&m’s, frozen yogurt, Italian food, Oreo’s and chocolate fudge frosting.

Hmm. I have clearly always had my sweet tooth but where the heck is the peanut butter?

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Yesterday’s  pre-run cinnamon raisin Ezekiel toast with mashed banana, peanut butter and jelly. Totally hit the spot.

3. Favorite fast food restaurant?

September 2000: Does Yogurt and Such count?

Fact: I had the phone number to every Yogurt and Such location on Long Island programmed into my bulky cell phone just so I could call ahead to hear which store had which flavor so that I did not arrive to a disappointing selection.

Frozen yogurt has always been my thing and my younger self would have truly enjoyed Red Mango just as much as my current self does on a regular basis.


Saturday afternoon’s parfait layered with yogurt, strawberries, blueberries, pumpkin flax granola and dark chocolate chips.

However, looking at my beautiful parfait, I am realizing that my 22 year-old self probably would have skipped the fruit since I was extremely picky and did not eat berries. I didn’t care about quality of the foods I consumed back then, my focus was solely on calories.

4. Favorite restaurants? September 2000: Mother Kelly’s and The Cheesecake Factory. Clearly still two of my favorites but where is the sushi?


Oh, right, I didn’t touch fish back then nor would I consider a vegetable roll because I refused to eat seaweed, certainly didn’t eat a variety of vegetables and wouldn’t go anywhere near avocado.

5. Favorite Ice Cream flavor?

September 2000: I really like chocolate chip but I rarely order it. My favorite ice cream is the megamix from Carvel which is soft serve (fat-free) ice cream loaded with crunchies all blended together.

There aren’t many Carvel locations left anymore which is just fine with me so long as I can still find a Cold Stone Creamery. IMG_2893

Cold Stone didn’t come to New York until about 2003 and my love for the creamery is still going strong.

Let’s interrupt the food portion of this survey for another important question:

6. Favorite store to max out your credit card?

September 2000: Saks Fifth Avenue.

Some things will never change. However, now that I am older and wiser, I am not so quick to max out the credit card.

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I just take pictures of my favorite shoes with my phone (never would have dreamed I would have a camera in my cell phone back in the year 2000) and continue to think about them an awful lot while trying to justify where, how and why one needs black and white polka dot high heels all trimmed in pink with hearts as the support.

Um hello, how adorable are these heels? I saw them yesterday in Saks.

7. Favorite Salad Dressing?

September 2000: I don’t use salad dressing.

I still don’t use salad dressing all that often but the difference between me then and now is that I skipped dressing back then because it was a waste of calories rather than replacing it with healthy flavors such as avocado or hummus. IMG_2890

Dinner the other night – vegetable stir-fry with sweet potato wedges, quinoa and loads of avocado.

8. What do you do most often when you are bored?

September 2000: Eat m&m’s. I cannot recall the last m&m that melted in my mouth. I loved those little chocolate candies back then but truthfully, I ate them in place of real food. I skimped on meals, filled up on frozen yogurt and when I got hungry (or bored it seems), I ate m&m’s straight from the one-pound bag.

We have talked about this before; if you don’t fuel your body correctly, the cravings for junk are stronger than ever and hard to resist. Nowadays, true chocolate cravings are few and far between for me. I prefer to eat food versus candy yet regularly enjoy my favorite desserts which may be what keeps the everything in moderation at a happy balance in my life.

And my favorite question from the September 2000 survey:

9. Where do you see yourself in ten years?

September 2000: Married, some kids perhaps, not working, eating frozen yogurt and going to the gym.

I was pretty accurate…for a bit.

You may notice that I mention the gym but don’t mention running. I worked out a good five days a week back then but running wasn’t my thing.

How could it be? I didn’t fuel properly at all so it really isn’t any wonder to me now to look back and see why I couldn’t hold a pace or run more than a mile at a time.

I didn’t have the right energy (did I mention this was the time period where I was dealing with amenorrhea?), I didn’t eat right to give my body what it needed to build muscle and endurance. 35 minutes on the elliptical and the occasional walk/run outdoors was the best I could do on a diet of fat-free frozen yogurt, boring salads and m&m’s.

So. Here we are. Fourteen years later. Fourteen years older. Divorced, a ten year-old son, still loving my frozen yogurt, running a good 40 miles a week, living on coffee, sushi, peanut butter and regular visits to The Cheesecake Factory, Cold Stone Creamery with window shops at Saks Fifth Avenue in between.

I think I turned out just fine.


What is one food you eat now that you never ate fourteen years ago?

What is one food that you have loved your entire life?

How old were you when you decided you liked avocado?

Favorite store to max out your credit card?

Who Bought The Annie’s Macaroni And Cheese?


Ever look back at something you said and realize a good laugh is in order?

On Friday we left off with me saying I was looking forward to enjoying Saturday’s long run. Insert laugh here.

The purpose of a long run is not your pace, rather, your focus should be endurance, logging miles and teaching your body to handle the duration.

When my first mile came in around 9:00 minutes though, I knew it was going to be a long morning and something wasn’t right.

I normally like to be left alone while I am running but by mile two, I was praying for one of my friends to wake up, forget that I like to be left alone and call me.

It wasn’t until mile seven or eight that I got lucky with some phone calls.

When a run doesn’t feel all sunshine and unicorns, I always do a mental check to determine if something specific is actually wrong.

I couldn’t pinpoint a problem, ache, pain, soreness, issue or anything anywhere on me, in me or around me.

Some days you just have it, and some days you just don’t.

In fact, I think we all need runs like this. Runs like this challenge you mentally to see what you’ve got.

Like anything else in life, mentally powering yourself through moments of weakness can only make you stronger.

I had another interesting experience after saying something here on Thursday that I now look back and laugh about.

Remember our discussion on Thursday about Macaroni and Cheese?


See this box? I didn’t buy this box. I didn’t put it in my bags at the grocery store. Yet somehow, it fell out of the bag when I got home.

I had my son with me while grocery shopping and first assumed he got this box past me without me realizing. You know how kids love to throw things into the cart without telling you?

When I questioned him, his quick response was, “Why would I sneak a box of Annie’s Mac and Cheese? I would go for the Kraft”.

My son decided that this unexplainable box of macaroni and cheese was a sign. He knows his mother so well to believe in signs.

I informed him that indeed it was a sign, a sign that he is not to eat Kraft Macaroni and Cheese.

In other news, we need to discuss Red Mango for a minute.


I actually don’t want to talk about my delicious parfait from Saturday which is starting to give the Whole Foods Food Bar competition in the price department.

How do you feel about Red Mango branching out and selling salads and sandwiches?


I don’t like when restaurants decide to expand their menus well beyond the realm of their market niche.

Maybe there will be someone who wants a salad instead of a yogurt, however, in my opinion, if the focus of a franchise is frozen yogurt, the salads and sandwiches are never all that good.

I realize that the picture on the menu looks all pretty and appetizing but the truth is, you are getting a prepared salad from a to-go case.

I don’t know. It reminds me of seeing buffalo wings on a Chinese Food take out menu. It’s just wrong.

My Cold Stone Sundae the other night was right though. Oh so right.


I didn’t get a picture of the sundae but here it is in the making. I went with a new flavor – Cherry Vanilla yogurt.

Chunks of real cherries in a vanilla yogurt which combined really well with chocolate chips, hot fudge and whipped cream. And of course the sprinkles chocolate-dipped waffle bowl.

It doesn’t take much to make me happy.

Off to eat my breakfast (three-ingredient pancake!) and begin the day. No running for me this morning, cross training has to happen at some point in the week, right?


Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Best thing you ate over the weekend?

How do you handle tough runs?

Do unexplainable things ever happen to you?




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