Butternut Squash and Sausage Pasta

I have been dying to share this recipe since I made it Wednesday night but have been super busy.  I got the inspiration from the Postrun Pasta article in Runner’s World September issue.  The “recipes” they provided pretty much just had a list of ingredients with no directions so I winged it.  I really did not expect Casey to have anything good to say about it when it was all said and done, but low and behold, he LOVED it!  As did I.  This one will definitely be part of our regular meals from now on.

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Ingredients

8 oz Bow Tie Pasta

3 Cups Butternut Squash (I buy the precut, so much easier)

2 Links of your favorite sausage (I used Turkey)

10 oz Portobello Mushrooms

1/4 cup Dried Cranberries

4 tablespoons Olive Oil

2 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar

1 tablespoon Minced Garlic

Black Pepper to taste

Red Pepper Flakes to taste

Goat Cheese for topping

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 350.  Place butternut squash on cookie sheet, drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil.  Roast for 30 minutes.  Squash should still be slightly firm when removing from oven.

2.  While butternut squash is roasting, prepare pasta.

3.  In large skillet over medium heat add 1 tbsp oil and mushrooms, allow to brown 1-2 minutes.

4.  Slice sausage and add to skillet, allowing to brown.

5.  Add butternut squash and dried cranberries and drizzle with remaining olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Add black pepper and red pepper flakes.  Stir well and cover for 5 minutes.

6.  Add pasta to skillet and toss.  Cover for 2-3 minutes.

7.  Serve with goat cheese sprinkled on top to taste.

I love the combination of flavors in this.  You get a little spicy and a little sweet.  I love that it is a delicious pasta without red sauce (not that I don’t love red sauce), just something a little different.

Serve this up after your long run tomorrow (or today if you are me)!!

More Pumpkin and Domesticity

Mondays are tough and require an obligatory pumpkin spice latte to get started.

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This particular Monday I couldn’t get my butt in gear.  Normal things that take me 3 minutes to do were taking twice that and just throwing off my juju.  I never really felt like I hit my stride today, but that’s life.  Every day can’t be perfect, especially not at work.  I’m lucky to think that most of my days are pretty awesome.  I am coming to realize that is not the norm.

Once I finally plugged through my day I came home to run my final hill repeats.  My splits weren’t bad, though my first rep said I was running a 6:55 pace which I know is bologna, I was hauling butt and it was my first one and I was feeling good, so thanks Garmin for that fun error!  Other wise the reps were right around 6:00 pace or better up the bridge, can’t argue with that.

The rest of the night held me in the kitchen.  For dinner we had Mahi fish tacos.  I love tacos with all their beautiful colors and fresh ingredients.

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As if that wasn’t enough, we are having a pot luck for Therapy month tomorrow at work which meant busting out some Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip cookies for the first time this season.  I forgot how awesome they are.  I keep having to herd Casey out of the kitchen so I actually have some left to take to work.

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For what is left of the night I am praying for a fantasy football miracle of 9 more points from the 49ers kicker so I can somehow manage a win.  It is very unlikely to happen but I am remaining optimistic!

Southwest Fritatta

I love all things southwest.  Peppers and salsa are some of the greatest things in my book so anything they can go in just about anything and make me happy.  I love making things like this that can feed me for a few dinners and take that part of my night out of the equation, allowing me more study time (yay!).

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Ingredients

3 eggs

3/4 cup egg whites

3/4 cup salsa

2 bags boil in bag brown rice (4 cups cooked)

1 cup chopped green peppers

4 oz sliced mushrooms

1 small onion

1/2 tbsp olive oil

Optional: mexican cheese, black beans

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2.  Start boiling water and cook rice.

3.  While water is heating, saute mushrooms, peppers and onions with olive oil until soft.

4.  In bowl combine salsa, eggs, cooked veggies and rice.

5.  Bake in spring form pan (or small rectangular pan, that was all I had) for ~30 minutes.  Add cheese and bake until cheese is melted.

6.  Serve over heated black beans and top with salsa.

What I Ate Wednesday

For some reason now that I am in Atlanta I have it in my head that I can’t run in the cold.  All those 10 degree mornings in Philly and now a 35 degree wake up call will keep me in bed.  My real problem is knowing that if I just sleep in and wait to run in the afternoon it will be a wonderfully pleasant 60 degree run.  Makes sleeping in sound good all the way around.  I will be happy once I can get back in my morning routine of running to free up my nights but for now my butt will be sleeping in until we can at least get to the 50’s in the morning.  What a wimp two weeks back in the south has made me!

Anyway…

Breakfast was my typical cereal and coffee (no surprise there)

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For lunch I made a big spinach salad with strawberries, goat cheese and blueberry craisins with raspberry vinaigrette dressing.  I also had some unsweetened apple sauce and my clementine.  This batch has been half good, half bad so I luckily ended up with a good and juicy one today!

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The afternoon held a few snacks.  My clinical instructor and I were just dragging so I needed a few pick me ups.  The truffle probably didn’t help the situation much but I have become obsessed with this trail mix.  A guy at work got it at Target and it is seriously phenomenal.  I could eat it all day!

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trail mix

We ended up getting done a little early today (and much earlier than the past two days) so I got to run in the beautiful, sunny 60 degree weather.  I had some serious lead legs after yesterday’s intervals but I couldn’t have cared less in the wonderful conditions.  When I got home I had to have a banana while I waited for my dinner to cook.

Sorry looking banana!

Sorry looking banana!

 

For dinner I had a southwest Frittata.  I didn’t have a spring form pan so I had to make a square fritatta but it was delicious.  I put it over black beans and it was fantastic.  I will post the recipe tomorrow as I made quite a few adaptations from my cook book version.

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After hitting the books for a few hours studying for boards, I took a break to watch modern family and had some yogurt and granola, my go to dessert these days!  I swear all of my WIAW look the same.  What a boring person I am!

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Happy Hump Day!

Fitness Marathon Sunday

Last night after working and getting my full 2 hours of studying in I headed out in Philly with my best friend Hannah!  Everywhere was super crowded and it was frigid walking around but I had a great time just getting to spend it with her.  After getting home at 1, I was not excited to have to get up at 8:15 to hit the road for a long run.

When the time came I reluctantly dragged myself out of bed, bundled up against the continually harsh temperatures and hit the road.  I ran the river trail which is my favorite run in Philly and ended my 13 miles at the yoga studio.  Today was one of those days that I didn’t even really feel good after a mile or two temperature wise and even after going inside for our yoga class and going to breakfast I just felt like I couldn’t get warm until I finally took a shower.

The yoga class was awesome after a long run, though some of the more strength oriented poses I struggled with due to tired muscles.  The stretching was awesome though; instead of just sitting around most of the day after running I got a great active recovery in.

Hannah and I went to the same breakfast place and I got a fantastic sandwich!  Talk about a recovery meal!

Whole wheat bagel with arugula, brie, bacon and sweet cherry jam!

Whole wheat bagel with arugula, brie, bacon and sweet cherry jam!

After coming home and showering I popped a whole chicken my mom gave me before heading up here in the oven so I would have it to eat off of all week.  It was so incredibly easy: pull out of freezer, cut off exterior bag, place chicken on tray and cook for 3 hours.

Chicken, brussel sprouts and red potatoes

Chicken, brussel sprouts and red potatoes

 

Nothing like treating your body right after giving it a morning beating!

Weekly Workout Recap

Running: 35.08 miles

Yoga: 90 minutes

Strength: 15 minute NTC, 3×10 lunges and squats

Goal: Remember to do What I Ate Wednesday this week…I got out of the habit and keep forgetting!!  Burning it in to my brain right now!

Veggie Flatbreads

After a full day of work and a quick run with my sweet puppy Scarlett I came home and felt inspired to make a little something new and different for dinner.  I didn’t feel like looking up a recipe so I decided to wing it with some veggie flatbreads.

I hit the grocery store and picked up a few missing ingredients but almost everything I used I found right in my refrigerator.

What you need…

~A Naan (I got garlic for some extra flavor)

~2 TBSP Pesto (we used sundried tomato, but regular is good too)

~1-2 TBSP Ricotta

~1-2 TBSP Feta

~Sprinkle of Mozzarella

~All or any of: red onions, artichokes, mushrooms, peppers, roma tomatoes (I used all of them of course)

~Optional topping: Balsamic Glaze

How to Make it:

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2.  Spread pesto on Naan.

3.  Place dabs of Ricotta around the flat bread.

4.  Add sliced ingredients with tomatoes added last.

5.  Sprinkle feta and mozzarella on top

6.  Drizzle with balsamic glaze.

7.  Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Before hitting the tanning bed…

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After becoming an 8 (Friends reference anyone)…

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The one I made for Casey is on the right sans mushrooms or balsamic glaze (clearly the inferior of the two).

Hope you enjoy this!

Happy Thanksgiving

 

After an incredibly busy day yesterday getting ready I am enjoying this moment to relax with a cup of coffee before the craziness begins.

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Watching the parade!

Watching the parade!

 

This just in, the balloons will fly…yay!!!

Anyway…yesterday was a serious prepping day so I knew every minute counted which meant waking up 20 minutes before needing to be at work nearly sent me into a tail spin.  Somehow (I swear teleportation must have been involved) I made it 2 minutes late which was pretty lucky.

I was able to work a half day and from 12:00 to 11 I…

  • Baked Apple and Pumpkin Pie

 

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  • Baked Yeast Rolls
  • Cleaned Kitchen and Living Room
  • Did laundry
  • Got my TB test read
  • Took Scarlett to the vet
  • Ran 7 miles
  • 30 minute Nike Training Club Work out (sore butt this morning, let me tell you)
  • Grocery shopped for last minute stuff
  • Put up our Christmas Lights!!  (will get a picture of these today)!

Crazy right, I am tired just thinking about it!  Luckily though my head popped off the pillow this morning.  I had dreams all night of everything that could go wrong.  By the way, I am not sure if I mentioned this or not but I am making the full thanksgiving feast this year!  This will be my first time ever!

Casey’s dad is coming over to make breakfast and we have a bunch of friends coming by for some morning festivities so I have been doing as much pre-cooking as I can to get out of his way when he gets here.

Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese

 

More importantly, I think it is important to think of all the things you are thankful for on this day (and really every day).  I have so much to appreciate about my life.  Love and support from friends and family in every aspect of my life, be it school or running or anything I decide to do.  My beautiful puppy girl who we got a year ago today.  For my legs that carry me through the beating I put on them each and every day!  And also for the simple things like a roof over my head and food to eat each day.

To all my friends and family at home, I miss you and will be thinking of you especially today!

Off to peel some potatoes!  HAPPY THANKSGIVING ALL!

Happy Halloween

I was so excited all week to dress up for work today.  I couldn’t wait to do my Rosie the Riveter hair and impress everyone at work with my whole get up.  Unfortunately, my clinical instructor told me Wednesday that the corporate center said we weren’t allowed to dress up this year.  So sad! 😦

Other than that the day was good and pretty much as productive as you can be in a day.  Work 8-5.  Straight home to run around town with Casey.  I loved seeing all the little trick-or-treaters while we were out, it melted my heart!  Once we made it home we showered quickly and headed off to the store.  We did our big grocery shopping trip for a few weeks then headed home so I could do some cooking.

I have been fortunate enough to overlap with another student from University of Vermont for the first two weeks of my rotation.  This actually happened to me on my first rotation too and I really enjoyed it.  It was good to swap information, board studying tips and a nice transition into the clinical process.

Tomorrow is her last day at the clinic so we are having a big pot luck lunch for her.  I committed to making pulled pork (which had to go in the crock pot tonight to have a good long time to get awesome) and the pumpkin oatmeal white chocolate chip cookies.

Even more exciting, my team from the Bourbon Chase will be here tomorrow night for the James Island Connector race on Saturday.  Can’t wait to see them.

Off to bed now to get some good rest before another crazy busy day!  Love, love, LOVE Fridays!

Got My Computer Back

FINALLY GOT MY COMPUTER BACK, YAY!!!!

Things like that never happen unless it is the least opportune time.  For instance, in the middle of two weeks where you have three mid-terms.  Granted, I know I only didn’t have it for two days but I take most of my class notes on my computer so for the past two days I kept going to study for my test Tuesday and didn’t have what I needed.  The saga is over now thank goodness!

So to recap the past few days:

Thursday (V-Day):

I was so excited to go to this fitness class at my gym called Joe-D Bands.  I went to the gym and ran for a while before the class started and then headed over.  Things were going great, it was a work out with 6 exercises that you did 20 reps, 30, then 40 with a lap on the track in between sets.  I was kicking major butt and loving the class (still a little sore) and when I came back from the lap between 30s and 40s the instructor had changed!  The new guy that had come in had changed all the exercises so I had no idea what I was doing, he changed the number of reps of everything.  I just got so frustrated, with 15 minutes left in the class I just got my stuff and left.  My head wasn’t in the game because I couldn’t figure out what I was supposed to be doing and I knew I had already gotten a good work out in so that was that.

After that debacle, we went to our friend’s house for dinner.  I made Bruschetta Bread Bites for an appetizer and Red Velvet Cupcakes for dessert.  Our friend made a Mango Pulled Pork that was AMAZING!

Bruschetta Appetizer

Bruschetta Appetizer

These are super easy to make.  Recipe linked to picture.

Terrible Picture, but they were sooooo good!

Terrible Picture, but they were sooooo good!

I used the Paula Deen Recipe for these (so we know they were terrible for you) but they were amazing.  I followed the recipe to a T except for the frosting.  I added all the wet ingredients and then just gradually added the sugar until I got it how I wanted it.  I definitely didn’t use the whole box of powdered sugar.  (Made 24 cupcakes).

We got the pups together during dinner too and they had a blast, and then slept all night which was great.

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Last night we went to a wedding, so today has been lazy (the downside of drinking for me is being out of commission the next day for sure)!  But we had a great time which is worth it since we don’t go out and drink often.

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Hope everyone is having a great weekend, it is super chilly and rainy in Charleston (great lazy study day!).  

Have you ever had a negative fitness class experience?  Did you try that same class again?