No Hunger, No Problem

Did any of you watch the CrossFit Games this past week!?

In-freaking-sane. I was on the edge of my seat eating kettle corn watching these superhumans do the impossible.

In other news…

Three of my high school dance company friends got together for a reunion at Bareburger. It had been forever since I’d seen Pam and Charli (I saw Susie not too long ago in the city), and it was so fun catching up with these girls! We’re all talking about our jobs and intense research projects these days. TOO MUCH (quasi-)ADULTING.

IMG_2291

what radiant women

As Charli said, we came with our eager stomachs for some kickass burgers. Pam also spotted these incredible brussels sprouts on the menu that we shared. Get this: brussels sprouts with sriracha, blue cheese, pork belly, and butternut squash.

IMG_2286

Whoever thought of this combo is out of his/her mind, yet so brilliant. For my burger, I got the El Matador: bison burger, queso fresco, pickled jalapeños, guac, pico de gallo, and green leaf lettuce on a sprout bun.

IMG_2288

it looks like a guacamole sandwich tower at first sight, which is very pleasing

IMG_2290

Demolished that.

Warning: the rest of this is going to be very first world problem. 

When my family went out for our Groupon dinner (that was postponed last week) at North Street Tavern after Mass, I was not hungry at all. Lunch at Bareburger was fatty and filling, but it was also pretty late (we finished at around 3:30).

IMG_6654

I could have eaten a salad at Bareburger, but I didn’t want to be “that person” to order salad at a burger place, especially while dining with good friends. Not that they would have judged me, but I knew that we chose this reunion to be at Bareburger for a reason (read: dang delicious burgers).

I also really wanted a burger because I had just worked out and I wanted hearty foooooood.

If I’m honest, I was almost…disappointed that I was so full by the time dinner rolled around. We were about to eat at this fancy restaurant, and I had zero desire for any food. This would have stressed me out to NO END a couple years ago.

“Why did I eat so much at lunch? I will definitely only have a salad now. Maybe I just shouldn’t eat at all. Should I just try to stuff all this food?”

IMG_2295

crab cakes with mango salsa for the table to share ➔ 1/2 a cake for each person

But as intro anatomy taught me, rest and digest is the way to go. It’s easier said than done for some of us (trust me), but there’s no need to stress over food. In my recovery, there was a weird phase where I unsure whether I was stuffed because I actually overate or because I just needed to adjust to this new amount of food that I should be eating. This made me hyper-attentive to my stomach at all times, and I would stress about having to eat a certain amount for each meal, even if I wasn’t that hungry.

IMG_6656

tuna tartare ➔ mom shared a bite with me

Sometimes that anxiety still creeps up on me, even though I’m certain that I’m eating a healthy amount overall. Or maybe it’s just anxiety that I need to eat all this good food while it’s in front of me. Either way, I’ve learned to CHILL.

IMG_2296

mom’s fave: sweet potato fries ➔ I had a few of these

If I’m not hungry at all, no one is forcing me to eat. Don’t eat. If I have a few bites of food— because, hey, I’m at a nice restaurant with my family— that’s still okay. God gave us food to live and to enjoy, but He definitely did not give it to us to stress over it.

If you’ve struggled with food in any way, you know that it’s hard to naturally accept those thoughts “like a normal person”, but I can attest that it is possible to work through it.

Luckily for me, the rest of the family didn’t have nearly as much food as I did during the day, so they were ready for this meal.

IMG_2298

my wood-fired personal pizza with roasted red peppers, mushrooms, ricotta, and basil ➔ 2 slices of this

As I relaxed into the meal more, I found that my appetite started to appear (it had been ~4 hours since I finished at Bareburger by then).

IMG_2297

a bite or two of Ben’s lobster mac and cheese

I knew to save room for dessert, don’t you worry. This I finished all by myself.

IMG_2301

carrot cake!

A few disclaimers:

  1. We ordered so much food because the Groupon was worth a LOT.
  2. Hooray for leftovers.
  3. We are humbly grateful to have so much delicious food available to us.
  4. We also don’t usually eat out every weekend, but I dunno, I guess we have Groupons to use.

Other eats at home have involved peanut butter and banana (but I didn’t need to say that).

DSC_2557

brown rice breakfast bowl

DSC_2558

overnight oat smoothie with blueberries added in

DSC_2561

whole wheat banana pancakes for Sunday morning breakfast

DSC_2562

topped with Greek yogurt, nut butter, and blueberries

I also taught Ben how to make and eat avocado egg toast. It is truly an art and a skill. Let me know if you want a tutorial.

DSC_2559 DSC_2560

I’d say the young lad needs a bit more practice, but not bad for a rookie.

Hope you all have an awesome Monday! Rest and digest.

So tell me: 

Thoughts on this first world problem of mine.

What was your Sunday morning breakfast?

Did you watch the CrossFit Games?

What are you thankful for today? Well, if I do indeed wake up after I go to sleep tonight (typing this Sunday night), then I’m thankful for another day of life and for the opportunity to go a job that I find enjoyable and fulfilling.

 

Two Museums, Two Desserts, Two Blistered Feet

I did something this weekend other than “oh ya know, just layin’ low…” !!!

Not that there’s anything wrong with laying low (after all, I love kicking up my feet after work these days). But it’s nice to exit the abode and live a little, especially when the weather is as gorgeous as it was this weekend!

IMG_1607

Friday

There’s nothing really to share about Friday except that I worked, ate my favorite dinner of the week, and went to bed at 9.

DSC_2519

brown rice with eel + avocado = all the good things in sushi, amplified in a bowl

Also, BEN CAME HOME FROM SPAIN! He completed El Camino de Santiago, which is historically a Christian walking pilgrimage. There are many routes, but Ben did a super long one that totaled 890 km (553 miles) within 32 days. Casual.

13499976_10204869183327993_1850676137_o

Congrats, Ben! YOU ROCK.

He actually came home at 2 AM Saturday morning, but I snuck into his room later in the morning to say hi to him before I left for NYC.

Saturday

Since I went to bed so darn early, I woke up at around 6 AM for some sunrise moves and grooves!

100 burpee workout // 10 reps of each // Click here for demos!

  • 10 tuck jump burpees
  • 10 T pushup burpees
  • 10 candlestick to chair burpees
  • 10 alternating side burpees (this one actually hurt my shoulder a bit because the pushup becomes kinda awkward, so I would not recommend this variation)
  • 10 broad jump burpees
  • 10 spiderman pushup burpees
  • 10 handstand burpees
  • 10 superman burpees
  • 10 dive bomber burpees
  • 10 plank jack tuck jump burpees

I tried to do some new/weird variations to keep things interesting, so it was definitely a fun (and tiring) one!

DSC_2520

banana bread baked oatmeal with plain peanut butter + “My Maine Squeeze” almond butter from The Peanut Principle

DSC_2521

from the farmers’ market 😀

Plus a couple pieces of my mom’s egg white pork bake.

After washing up, Pop dropped me off at the train station to head down to the city! Cue this Tori Kelly song (because she is the soundtrack to my life).

First of all, I saw an extraordinary number of dads with their kids on the train/in the city that day, and it made my heart explode.

Secondly, Park Ave looks so clean and luxurious, but it honestly just smells like manure. #overrated

IMG_1602

First stop of the day was the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Can you believe I’ve lived in NY for 11 years, and this was my first time going there?

IMG_1604

I guess if you don’t live in NY, you don’t really see the big deal. But this is one of those “must see” attractions in the city.

I did my tourist thing while waiting for my friend, Christine.

IMG_1605 IMG_1608

Squealing greeting + photos in front of the MET, because we’re bananas (yellow on the outside, white on the inside, in case you haven’t seen me make that joke 100 times on the blog).

IMG_1610

apparently this is where Gossip Girl cast ate lunch in the show??

In we went!

IMG_1624

IMG_1640

IMG_1627
IMG_1634

We interspersed our “ooo’s” and “aaah’s” with some serious girl talk and some attempts at reading our people’s language.

IMG_1688

My contribution every time: “I have no idea what it means, but it looks familiar.”

IMG_1689

At least we’re proficient in fit fam culture.

Art eventually drains ya girls, so we headed over to lunch at Bluestone Lane for some Australian fare at around 1 PM.
IMG_1638
the restaurant is an extension of an Episcopalian church!
IMG_1639
I spy vegemite toast and the word “brekkie”
IMG_1642
Christine got the egg and bacon roll + I got the Aussie meat pie with mint pea puree
IMG_1649
dynamite
Our waiter was Australian, which really added to the experience. Arman, I could not stop thinking about you.
We made it our mission to find both ice cream and Levain Bakery for dessert, so we took the scenic route and walked around the Central Park reservoir. It was the absolute perfect day to do it! Hot, but not unbearable, and bluuuuuue skies.
IMG_3187
IMG_1651
We didn’t know where to get ice cream, but we happened upon Amorino Gelato, which is famous for making roses out of their gelato! That stuff is expensive, but it is undeniably pretty and delicious.
IMG_1654 IMG_1656
Christine got fruity flavors + I got pistachio, black cherry, and a cookie butter flavor!
That cone was tiny and that gelato was melting wicked fast. You would think I was a magician, that’s how quickly I made it disappear.
We continued walking and found the legendary Levain Bakery. I had been hearing about their incredible chocolate chip cookies since I moved to New York, basically. This was THE DAY.
But first, a short wait on a line that spanned half the block. Expected.
IMG_1661
this is my “THIS IS BETTER THAN DISNEY WORLD BUT I’M TRYING TO BE CIVILIZED” pose
We descended into the little bakery…
IMG_1664
…I bought one chocolate chip cookie and one oatmeal raisin scone. We desperately needed to charge our phones, so we walked over to a Starbucks, where I finally unveiled the glory…
IMG_1665 IMG_1668
 these are both HUGE
…wait for it!!!
IMG_1667
You have no idea how long I had been waiting to take that money shot. Ladies and gents, this was one of the best things that my taste buds have ever encountered. I’m not even a big fan of chocolate.
Warm.
Crispy on the outside.
Slightly under-baked and gooey on the inside.
Melted chocolate chips.
Rich walnut chunks.
Thick and decadent.
a poem about Levain’s chocolate chip cookie by Alison
Christine and I split the mega cookie, and we had a few bites of the scone, which was fantastic as well. Not too sweet at all, but BUTTERY. The bag smelled like buttered popcorn. Mmmmm.
Afterwards, we walked back around the reservoir to where we started, and continued with some more girl talk until Christine had to leave. Next museum of the day was Cooper Hewitt Museum of Design with one of my high school dance company mates, Susie!
IMG_1678 IMG_1669
IMG_1676
had to take a pic of this
This is probably my favorite museum of all time. It’s so interactive, and the vibe is an intersection between classical architecture and modern technology.
IMG_1670
They give you this high tech pen that acts as a memory stick. The pen has a “+” sign on the back that synchronizes to the “+” sign on each description panel on the exhibits. When you go home, you go onto their website and enter your unique code that they gave you, and you can see pictures of all the exhibits you saved via the pen. MAGICAL.
IMG_1679
This immersion room is your childhood dream. You basically design your own wallpaper with the pen, and watch it come to life in front of your eyes.
IMG_1675
Five stars for Cooper Hewitt! Thank you so much, Susie, for suggesting it!
We worked up a good appetite playing around in the museum. Susie chose an excellent Greek restaurant called Korali for dinner.
IMG_1681
a rare moment when no cars are about to run you over in the city
IMG_1684
beet salad with grapefruit, pine nuts, goat cheese, fennel, dill and scallions
IMG_1683
when the manager walks up to you offering a FREE platter of melted Greek cheese, you do not refuse (such a nice gesture of them!)
IMG_1685
soup of the day: lentil
IMG_1686
Susie gave me a bite of her lamb shank, which was heavenly
We also walked by this gem of a Citi bank sign (great eye, Susie).
IMG_1680
This is Gabby Douglas, US Olympic Gymnast. But peep the caption in the upper left hand corner…
THIS is Allyson Felix, US Olympic Track and Field Runner:
allyson-felix-rotator_0
Alright, Citi Bank.
And then I bid NYC a good night.
Ben picked me up at the train station, and I was all excited to tell him that I walked 11 miles that day (according to the Apple Health app), but then I remembered that he had been walking an average of 20 miles per day for the past month. Overachiever.
I still gave myself a foot massage before bed.
Sunday
I got up a little past 7 to get ready for Mass and say goodbye (already!) to Ben and Madre. Not for long though. Pop and I will meet them in Florida soon for our big family vacation next week!
Breakfast after Mass:
DSC_2522
I also had leftover roasted broccoli while cooking this. Cravings, man.
I watched some gymnastics, read some blogs, and napped before getting up and eating again. Sundays, man.
DSC_2523
smoked salmon avocado toast + unpictured carrots and hummus + half a frozen banana
Then I started this blog post and FaceTimed with my beautiful friend, Briana, from college. Followed by some killer moves and grooves in the basement (which I have deemed to be my “pain cave”).
60 seconds strength/45 seconds  cardio/20 seconds  plyometric/15 seconds rest
3 rounds of each block, 1 minute rest between blocks
BLOCK #1
BLOCK #2
  • pistol squats (30 sec each leg)
  • jumping jacks
  • broad jumps over a step, lengthwise
BLOCK #3

BLOCK #4

I hadn’t done a workout that made my quads cry in a while. I stretched out before Pop and I went to one of our favorites for dinner— Bareburger!

IMG_1702 IMG_1699
I made my own burger: turkey burger, spinach, sprouts, tomato, pimento cheese on sprout bun + ketchup and mustard
IMG_1700
sweet potato fries with their curry ketchup + special sauce
IMG_1703
the inner beauty of my burger
IMG_1701
Pop’s “Hog Wild” burger: wild boar burger, pimento cheese, frizzled chickpea onions (!?), fried egg, and pickled green tomatoes on a brioche bun
Decadence once again.
We picked up some groceries afterwards, and now I’m finishing typing this while watching sports on TV (← yay for Olympic season coming up!). ‘Twas a fabulous weekend filled with good food, great conversation, and even better people.
Back to the grind today, but one more week until vacation! Hope you all have stellar Monday. Give yourself a foot massage. You deserve it.
So tell me:
Two things you did this weekend!
What is your favorite museum?
What is the best cookie you’ve ever eaten?
Are there any sports you are following currently?
 

How Can It Be…?

Finals got me like…

NBKvs

[source]

I am typing this at midnight after a long day of studying, but honestly, I have nothing to complain about. Finals always suck, but that’s just the way the cookie crumbles. Instead, let’s look at the positive things that happened last week. Theme: How can it be…?

How can it be that I’m going home in five days?

How can it be that my best friend gave me the most thoughtful Christmas gift in all the land? Rachel put together a beautiful scrapbook consisting of letters written by all my friends here at college, as well as family and friends from home.

12341313_995464240518745_1756796122309668825_n

too many emotions!!!

IMG_9360

I love you, Rachel! ♥︎ And thank you so much, friends who contributed!

How can it be that Christmas is less than two weeks away?

IMG_9403 IMG_9410

How can it be that friends who I’ve known for a year or less have become like family?

IMG_9412 12346439_995464390518730_6611894048449083271_n

How can it be that my engineering friends are so brilliant?

IMG_9415

fireplace inside the gingerbread house thanks to iPhone technology

How can it be that my friend Emma and I made it to the roof of the Arts and Sciences building before 10AM on Thursday?

IMG_9382

How can it be that my friends and I survived skating without falling on our butts?

IMG_9440

How can it be that Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage delivered into my life everything I needed and more on Saturday night? It took Rachel and me 1.5 hours to get to this place (unexpectedly), we were hangry and fading, and I was dead tired. By the grace of God we made it to the restaurant and this meal made all things right.

IMG_9466

pumpkin pie frappe (milkshake)! there were graham cracker pieces.

IMG_9478

“iPhone burger” with boursin cheese, grilled onions, mushrooms, lettuce, and tomato + sweet potato fries (p.s. crushed that burger)

How can it be that the dining hall spoils me too?

IMG_9350

African sweet potato, peas, and lentils

IMG_9395

holiday dinner night: herbed chicken with apricot pomegranate sauce, sweet potatoes, and green beans

IMG_9428

BBQ lentil “meatball” sub

IMG_9432

baked fish with mashed sweet potatoes and sautéed kale

IMG_9462

salad from the food court

How can it be that my friends are so hilarious?

IMG_9482 IMG_9452

How can it be that my brain and body are still functioning right now?

IMG_9431

How can it be that God is so good to us “squishy mortals” (← favorite phrase ever via Geraldine)?

There is nothing more attractive in the world than my bed, so I’m gonna go there now.

Hope you all have a fantastic week ahead! This time of year is stressful for nearly everyone, but I hope you find some light in the darkness 🙂

So tell me:

How can it be that…(insert something wonderful)?

What is the best burger you’ve ever eaten?

Is this a stressful time for you?

Good Food + A Run That I Loved?!

Three more days until Christmas and only two more days until Christmas Eve!!!

Thought I’d do the math for you, you’re welcome. Stats didn’t help with that at all, by the way.

This past weekend has been all about seeing high school friends and spending time with family. I really only have these next few days to see New York friends before my family heads to Florida for 2.5 weeks! I guess that’s why I feel like I have to squeeze in all my friend time ASAP. Luckily, I think I accomplished that this weekend!

Friday

I met up with some dance friends for dinner at Bareburger on Friday night. It made me smile so hard to catch up with these wonderful ladies!

Processed with Moldiv

That meal also made me smile real big. I had a black bean burger with spinach, tomato, goat cheese (yaaassss), and stone ground honey mustard on a multigrain bun. The panko-crusted fried zucchini sticks and sweet potato fries were also perfection.

And guess what! Before Bareburger, I ran for the first time since November 22! It was dark and cold outside, but I had just gone on a walk and started running home on my last lap around the neighborhood. I actually came inside to do a strength workout, but I was sore, so I went back outside and ran. It just felt right. I currently only run if I’m feeling in the groove, and on Friday evening I was feelin’ it!

According to the RunKeeper app my pace was 9:08 for the 3.6 miles I ran, but I felt like I was flying, so I don’t give a darn about what it says. I think I actually loved that run.

latest

[source]

My reaction to myself.

Saturday

Moving back to food…

Saturday morning’s breakfast was brought to you me by my food idol, Kylie @ Yeah…Imma Eat That. I prepared this “banana pudding for breakfast” on Friday night and dug in on Saturday morning. The only thing I did differently was rather than using vanilla Greek yogurt, I used plain Greek yogurt mixed with apple sauce, honey, and cinnamon.

Holy smokes, life will never be the same.

I’m on a mission to make as many unique breakfasts as possible during this winter break. #winterbreakbreakfastmission <— can we trend this? yes? yes?

My moves on Saturday: This “triple 8” workout from Purely Twins. All the incline exercises really worked the upper back! It was a fun one, and I finished in about 27 minutes.

After my workout, I visited my dance school’s holiday party where I reunited with old and new dance company members and instructors. Oh how I miss dancing! (Groovin’ has fallen on the wayside in college.)

I also went on a freezing-cold walk with my good friend Samantha in the afternoon. She understands my love for walking, especially now that we don’t have a big wide campus for roaming.

Nighttime came, we went to Mass, and then this family dinner happened:

DSC_0524

Mom’s homemade shrimp pad thai

DSC_0525

Arman’s balsamic roasted brussels sprouts (I also added some honey  for some sweetness!)

DSC_0526

A pumpkin gingerbread bar with vanilla ice cream

Everything about this meal was comforting and satisfying. It was so nice to sit down with the whole family at the dinner table, holding hands, saying grace, singing kumbaya…

Sunday

The Greek yogurt bowl is BACK.

DSC_0527

plain Greek yogurt mixed with maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, and chia seeds + half a sliced banana + pumpkin gingerbread + almond butter

Tip: Under-bake muffins ever so slightly. It results in a soft, doughy, delicious muffin that is perfect for things like the above yogurt bowl.

I had lunch only two hours after breakfast because I woke up at 10, ate breakfast, and then went to my church for a religious education staff/faculty luncheon at noon. I taught third grade Sunday school for two years in high school, and the principal was kind enough to invite me back!

luncheon

My dad took me to his gym in the evening, where my moves included 5 min. on the arc trainer + 12 minute tabata + kettlebell burpee pyramid workout. I loved this workout!

I also appreciated the fact that the CrossFit Invitational was on TV at the gym. How could you not be inspired to work out when you’re watching the fittest people on earth?

{10pm snack as I type this post}:

DSC_0529

green smoothie made with ½ c. almond milk, a huge handful of spinach, half a frozen banana, and half a scoop of vanilla protein powder

Brother: “Why spinach and banana?”

Me: “You can’t taste the spinach.”

Brother: “But there’s spinach in it.”

Me: “Taste it!”

Brother: *tastes it* “Oh, you really can’t taste the spinach.”

Me: “You’re welcome.”

I hope you all have a fabulous day! Eat (or drink) your spinach!

So tell me:

What did you eat this weekend?

Do you ever feel like you’re flying during a run, even though you’re not going THAT fast?

Where will you be spending Christmas?

Behind the Scenes #25: Burgers, Fries, and Ice Cream

Thinking-Out-Loud

with one of the coolest Canadians, Amanda

1) I feel like I don’t have much to do these days, yet I still end up filling my days with things. Chores, yoga/walking, seeing friends, making appointments, getting college stuff ready, blogging, reading, watching the World Cup. None of it is really urgent and I never feel busy, but I end the day thinking, “What did I even do today and how is it already 1 AM?!”

001bc77c30afecd933c903d32aee682c

[source]

2) If all THAT isn’t thrilling enough, Daliza, my family, and I are kicking it up a notch (or a hundred notches) starting Sunday. We’re going to Florida! My parents have a lovely vacation home down there, so we’ll be chillin’ there for a whopping THREE WEEKS. Daliza’s excited for Disney. I’m excited for Publix— the supermarket of the South. Typical.

DSC_4926

Last year in Florida when I made fish tacos and started the blog. Nostalgia.

3) I’m getting closer to holding my handstand! Right now, I get really excited when I hold it for a solid four seconds. I’m basically Shawn Johnson.

4) There’s nothing quite like a classic burger. Pickles, ketchup, mustard, cheese. Mmm. Lilly, Pam, and I went to Bareburger yesterday, and I had just that. We also shared sweet potato fries, because…sweet potato fries. Self-explanatory.

photo 2

The only thing that made this a little non-classic was the fact that it was a turkey burger instead of a beef burger.

photo 1 copy

Sweet potato fries with their three sauces— curry ketchup, ranch, and “special sauce.” It was wonderful.

5) The fact that my friends and I are all going to college next month has not hit me AT ALL yet. Lilly is moving back to California tomorrow for college, and it’s just not emotionally occurring to me that she’s going so far away for such a long time. I’m just gonna start bawling out of nowhere in a few weeks when I’m listening to a sad song or something.

photo 3

♥ I’ll miss you so much, Lilly!!!

6) The “core four” got together last night at the local creamery for some catch-up conversation and ice cream!  I love hanging out with those girls.

photo 4 copy

Apple pie ice cream = heavenly. 

7) I bought coconut flour yesterday just to make Amanda’s banana bread mug cake. I’m dreaming about it already.

8) I haven’t been carrying out my teenage duties of sleeping a lot over the summer. I don’t know why, but my internal clock wakes me up after about 7-8 hours of sleep every morning. That’s a perfect amount of sleep for me, but I can’t help but feel like I should be sleeping in even longer while I have that luxury.

9) As I’ve been doing more yoga recently, I’ve learned that I am so NOT flexible anymore. Well, I am and I’m not. I can still do the splits on each leg, but my shoulders are getting so tight that it’s getting difficult to clasp my hands behind my back. No bueno. If I’m gonna be a physical therapist, I better drink some of my own medicine and stretch more!

10) I hope you all have a fabulous day! I’ll leave you off with words from the coolest book around 😉

a462136a3dac807ac7cdfaae7048887a

[source]

So tell me:

Do you like burgers?

How long does your internal clock let you sleep?