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A day in the life of Peach’s Clean Eats (and Instagram addiction)

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Yeah, yeah… I know I Instagram more food than is probably necessary. So be it. I own many of the stereotypes so accurately and hilariously depicted in this parody.   I recently even stooped to the crazy CrossFit handstand shots. Sorry, you don’t get to see those. Yet.

However, there is a reason for all this IG nonsense. These pics make posts like this one way better, so that I can share my latest FAILS adventures with clean eating and Paleo-ish foods with pictures! Because I know you’re all just on the edges of your seats to know what my daily calorie intake looks like.  Admit it. Or not. The hell with my self-esteem. I’ll go cry in the corner now.

Breakfast:

Savory choice: Egg scramble with veggies, sometimes with leftover protein. Depends on the leftovers… I haven’t quite adjusted my system to crave crock-pot chicken curry at 8am. *burp* The ingredients: 1 whole egg, 1-2 egg whites, 1 cup of veggies, 1/2T coconut oil.  Heat the oil, add the veggies and cook until warmed. Push to one side of skillet, then add egg/whites and let those firm up. When almost firm but still wet, mix with veggies and cook until eggs are desired doneness. Top with leftover turkey burger, meatloaf, ground beef, steak, bacon, sausage…you get the idea.

Sweet choice: I go this route far more often, but try to keep the choices high in protein, low in fat and low in carbs. I experimented last week with a recipe for some Spaghetti Squash Breakfast Fritters. From the final pic, you’d think this was a breeze, right?  WRONG. Here’s what really happened.

making smaller ones worked well enough...

making smaller ones worked well enough…

let's make a BIG ONE!

let’s make a BIG ONE!

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Flip….FAIL.

maybe if I arrange it pretty enough on the plate and add a fancy label it won't suck so bad?

maybe if I arrange it pretty enough on the plate and add a fancy label it won’t suck so bad?

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A way less messy option is my Cake Batter Yogurt Fruit Bowl:

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1/2 C Fage 0% greek yogurt
1/2 medium banana, mashed
splash of Almond Breeze Unsweetened Vanilla Milk
2TBSP PB2 w/ Chocolate
Top with fresh fruit, nuts, more nut butter or a drizzle of honey/maple syrup

Recently, I brought back an old favorite by Lauren at The Informed Health Nut – Protein Pow Pow Pancakes  (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

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in YO FACE.

1/2 of a small, ripe banana
1 scoop protein powder (~1/4 cup) I used Jay Robb’s Strawberry Egg White
1 egg
1 egg white
2 tbsp coconut flour
1/4 cup coconut beverage, or almond milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
stevia, to taste (I omitted)
dash salt
slightly less than 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp butter or coconut oil, to grease pan between pancakes

Directions – Mash banana in a mixing bowl. Add the egg and egg white and mix. Add the protein powder and coconut flour and mix well. Add the coconut beverage, vanilla, stevia, and salt and mix well. Add the baking soda and mix well. Turn on the stove to medium lowish heat and place a pan on the burner. Add enough butter to coat the bottom. Once heated, pour the batter in the pan. When there are LOTS of bubbles, flip the pancake. Repeat until the batter is gone. Serve with grass fed butter, nut butter, sugar free maple syrup, shredded coconut, etc.

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Lunch and Dinner Options:

I’ve discovered I actually love roasted Brussels sprouts. Who’da thunk it?? And they are SO easy: Wash em up, cut off the ends, chop in half or quarters if they’re big mommas, toss in olive oil and salt/pepper to taste. Roast for 10-15 min at 405 degrees.

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the crispier, the better! YUM.

If I’ve learned one thing eating Paleo/Clean, it’s that you need to be creative. Sometimes you’re staring down an empty fridge/pantry and you’re so hangry that you could step on a small child*. Going to the grocery store is not gonna happen. You need to EAT. NOW. Your available options are:

  • A sad looking avocado on the counter
  • a small spaghetti squash chillin’ in the veggie bowl
  • frozen broccoli florets and Jenni-O’s frozen turkey burgers in the freezer
  • a wheel of Laughing Cow Light Herb and Garlic Cream Cheese wedges in the fridge

Let’s do this. Stab some holes (carefully!) in the squash and microwave 6 min on each side. Then microwave the broccoli until just tender. While those are cooking, throw a turkey burger into a skillet and cook until done. Cut up half of the avocado into bite-sized chunks. De-thread the spaghetti squash and put about 1-1.5 cups into a large bowl. Add the drained broccoli, then immediately add the Laughing Cow wedge and stir until it’s all melted into the hot veggies. Top with diced turkey burger and avocado. EAT. Fork is optional.

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lunch

dinner

dinner

* No children were harmed in the making of this meal.

So tell me, What quick and easy meals do you cook when you’re HANGRY?  

13.1

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The sea of runners crushed around me as we were all herded towards the starting line. I thought of my friends Bertie and T, who had already begun and would surely be waiting a long time for me at the finish. Trying to calm my racing heart, I prepped my Nike+ app to record my mileage and started my 13.1 playlist. As “Thrift Shop” began pumping through my noggin’, the starting line loomed. I had to pee. Kind of. Shit, too late now. I hit start on my Polar monitor and off I went.

I was running my first half marathon.

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After jockeying my way to a clear path for what felt like an eternity, the masses finally thinned out a bit. The first two miles flew by, and so did the second two. Still comfortable territory, but I’d been warned that the hills on this course were a doozy.  My plan was to manage them cautiously – quick steps and lean forward on the way up. Long strides and breathe deeply on the way down to recover.

Instead of worrying, I focused on the people watching. I smiled and waved at the pregnant lady cheering us on, wearing a tshirt that said “FUTURE RUNNER” with a down arrow. I ran past people offering me Krispy Kreme donuts!! and stations set up with M&Ms and jelly beans. Tailgaters offered beers, which I breathlessly declined. Later, though… yes. GOD YES.

My mind was kept occupied with the lyrics playing through my earbuds, the scenery of the city around me, and with what people wore or didn’t wear. There were lots of St. Patty’s Day festive outfits with garland, Irish shirts, leprechauns, green sequined tutus. Me, I was set with my bang buster and my turtle socks.

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The skyline didn’t draw my eye when the view appeared. I was drawn to the coral-strewn sunrise on the other side of the road. Typical me. And I kept on running.

Somewhere in Piedmont park I saw someone waving a sign that said, “We don’t know you, but we’re proud of you!!”. My heart lifted and I thought about how sweet they were. And at that moment, I felt proud of me too.

The miles kept rolling on and I feel like I hit my groove. My body knew what I wanted it to do and it did it without complaint. I kept my (turtle) pace and my breathing under control and laughed inwardly at the signs that said “We’re not wearing any underwear!” or “We tailgate for ANYTHING”. The race photographers loved me – I was the cheeseballing one who pointed directly at the camera and open-mouth laughed. I might have also been the one flexing her bicep. One guy lowered his camera and laughed at/with me. Nice, Peach. 🙂

When I hit mile 10, my face lit with pride. I’d just run the farthest I ever had in my life. And I wasn’t done yet, but I was okay.

Then, it was on that next hill that I felt the first twinge in my right calf muscle. The kind that threatened a vicious cramp if I didn’t back off. So I power-walked that up hill. And the next. Dammit, why do the steepest hills have to be at the end??? Sadistic course planners, I tell you.

Miles 11-12 wound up being significantly slower than my previous pace from all the walking of the hills. I nearly got upset about it. Instead, I thought, Dammit… be proud. You’re doing this race the best that you can, and it’s okay if you walk the hills after you’ve just RUN for TEN MILES. Just keep going. You’ve got this.

And just then I saw a mom-type lady waving a sign that said “RUN, [MY NAME], RUN!!!” And I thought of my own mom’s Facebook comment that had said the exact same thing the day before. I kept running for my mom and dad. Because they can’t.

The next hill nearly did me in, but as I was cursing inwardly, “**** THIS ****ING HILL ALL TO ****ING HELL.”, I thought of my big brother. He completed his first half this fall and I felt him cheering me on in spirit, too. I kept running for him.

I cheered when the race sign appeared that said “1/2 mile left!!” and I kept running. For me. Because I could do this.

And… it sucked. That last stretch felt so long. I was tired. I wanted to be done.

Then I looked over to my right and thought, hey, who’s the really skinny guy running over there on the other side of the barriers?  And then it hit me. OH. THAT’S THE MARATHONERS. WHO ARE FINISHING A course TWICE as long as yours and IN THE SAME TIME AS YOU. Oh the humility!!! 🙂

But as the spectator crowds got bigger and I could hear the race announcer’s peppy voice, my gloom lifted. I’m no Kenyan. Never will be. I’m just Peach. Running her first half and doing a damn fine job of it.

The finish line finally appeared and I kicked it up a notch. My legs felt like they weren’t going to agree with what my brain wanted, but they did.  I crossed the line with a victorious overhead fist pump and a huge grin. I bowed my head for my medal and posed for pictures, then went off to find Bertie and T. AND FOOD. Holy crap I was hungry.

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The post-race rewards were worth every drop of sweat. I did it, y’all!

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I’m only running for the pancakes.

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Please think of me on Sunday morning, when I’m hauling my sleepy ass from my cozy bed at 4am. Why would I wake up at o-dark-GIVEMECOFFEE-thirty? Oh, just to go run a half marathon. Voluntarily, mind you.

Damn, I’ve come a long way in a year.  This used to be my attitude towards running:

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And then, I had to go and get all motivated to get healthy. Silly me.

This whole running thing started when my big brother convinced me to run a 5K in April of last year. That was my first 5K since ohhhhh, 1997. I’d just started working with a trainer and was maybe 3 weeks smoke-free. Yay me, but my lungs and my body were still utterly shit a far cry from healthy.

I was SO SLOW. Hated every second of it. I was exhausted after 2 miles. At 2.5 I remember that my face was on fire and just wanted it to be OVER already. I mean, my linebacker-sized brother and my 8 year old nephew were both WAY far ahead of me if not already done. And it was starting to rain, and WHAT THE FUCK is this hill doing right before the finish line? It sucked. My time was something embarrassing… my brother finished in 32, my nephew in 34 and me? 38 something. Or more. I don’t know, I blocked it out.

But since then, I ditched the trainer and the globo-gym, started and stuck with CrossFit, kept my diet clean and healthy and Paleo-ish. I’ve put on muscle, remained a non-smoker, and have tackled a few other runs since then. They got better. I got better. So I did a few more 5Ks, a 10K in July,  a relay in a tutu!, a 15K in January, and now… a half marathon.

Yep, this weekend I’ll be tromping through Atlanta for 13.1 miles until I either a) reach the finish line or b) have to be scraped off the pavement with a pooper-scooper. Hopefully not c) both.

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My only goal. Finish.

Is this ambitious progress in under a year? Uhhhhh… I’m either the most motivated amateur runner ever or I’m just flat-out DUMB. But I really think I can do it. My body is in the best shape of my life, thanks to CrossFit, yoga and running. But my concern with the half is my endurance. I’ve never run that far or that long at once and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I thought about joining one of the free pacing groups they offer, but I think I’ll do better going at my own speed with my running playlist blasting in my ears.

I have my trusty Brooks Ghosts that I wore for the 15K, so they’re broken in. I’ll be hydrated and fueled beforehand. I’ll get enough sleep the night before. It will be warm but not hot: high 50s are the low that morning, creeping up to 70 by mid-day, so extra layers won’t be needed.

As for the run, all I can think to do is adopt my approach to the 15K – running an easy pace for 2 miles, have a few sips of water and 1-2 energy beans, then repeat until done. That plan kept my pace steady and the 9.something miles were very doable. I didn’t feel like I ran out of gas anywhere along the route. I was a little stiff for a day afterward, but it really wasn’t awful. Why wouldn’t 13.1 be as doable? At least… that’s the theory.

Hopefully I’ll run with grace and elegance, and not like this:

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But even if I finish dead last, there will be none of this.


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Because you best believe that afterward there will be piles upon piles of pancakes and pints and pints of BEER for St.Patty’s!  Pancakes make me sooooo happy.

Finally, I’m way grateful that I’ll have excellent company for the race in the lovely Bertie: a gorgeous Crossfit badass,  running inspiration, yoga buddy, brunch/coffee partner and fashion advisor.  That last one? Seriously, she should have a fashion blog. Like, yesterday. 🙂 But on race days, her self-proclaimed propensity to run like her favorite hashtag cracks me up: #wilddogontheloose.

As if keeping me motivated to run and preventing me from dressing like a homeless person wasn’t enough, Bertie gave me the coolest good luck gift for the half. My very own Lululemon Bang Buster in a gorgeous reversible minty-polka-dot/kelly green!  Check out the awesome card she gave me, too… snifffff…. she is the most thoughtful, sweetest friend ever.

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no pinching allowed!

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polka dots and shamrocks

That minty fresh baby will be worn on race day as my good luck charm, my green for St. Patty’s, and to keep my *#)&%#@*ing bangs off my face while I run. Not that I’m salty about the bangs… Wait. I am. Don’t get bangs, people. Not if you work out all the time. Better choices have been made, Peach.

But can y’all help a girl out?!

What say you,  fellow runners and athletes? Do you have any advice for me, the half-newbie? (Newbie-halfer? Newfer? Halfbie? What do you call me?)  Am I crazy? 

…don’t answer that last one.

I don’t trip up the stairs while collecting an Oscar, but I do drop shit.

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Has anyone ever fallen so elegantly? EVER? I think not. Stop saying shit about my GirlCrush.

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Moving on. But I’ve still got my eye on you.

A few posts ago I wrote about my fat ass FoodWars and my evolved attitude towards Paleo vs. Clean Eating. Fortunately I can report that clean eating is working WAY better for me. I’m happy. And when momma’s happy, everybody’s happy.

I still cook all of my staples and I’m forever on the lookout for new recipes to try. For instance, Peach’s Vegetable Saute is always awesome.

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But it’s fun to experiment with new mini-quiche flavor combos.

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Bacon and Veggie Mini-Quiches

  • 2 whole cage-free, organic eggs*
  • 3/4C egg whites (approx 4 egg whites)
  • 1/4 sweet onion, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 small zucchini
  • 1 small yellow squash
  • heaping handful of baby spinach
  • 6-8 slices of COOKED bacon
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350. Cook the bacon in a large skillet. Reserve a little of the grease for greasing the muffin pan. Whisk all your eggs in a big bowl. In a food processor throw in the onion, pepper, squash, zucchini and process until finely chopped but not liquified.  Add this mixture to your eggs.  Put spinach into the processor and finely chop and also add to your eggs. Mix the egg mixture well and using a 1/4 measuring cup, fill the greased muffin pan. This recipe makes one 12-muffin pan.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the eggs are set in the middle.  *You can use 6 whole eggs, or all egg whites, or any combo of whole/whites you wish.

Oh, and here’s what happens when I have a klutz moment – I bring salad fixings to a gathering and when I try to leave with the uneaten, wind up with 3 pounds of spring mix lettuce in my tote bag. Transportation FAIL. I swear I only had 2 glasses of wine. Sheesh. At least my aim is awesome. JLaw, I am not.

have roughage, will travel.

have roughage, will travel.

My workout routine hasn’t changed: 1 or 2 short runs, 1 day of yoga and CrossFit 3-4 times a week. I take my rest days when my body tells me to, and even when it doesn’t.

p.s. – Lululemon is the devil. I have NO willpower.

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in my defense, I’ve lusted after this jacket since December. And it was on sale. And I LOVE IT.

I’ve resisted the invasion of the tiny humans bearing crack-in-a-box-Thin-Mints.

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avoid all eye contact. keep walking.

But instead, I made (and sampled) my own cookies. Sorry, no recipe for these… the owner would hunt me down and noogie me to death.

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All these sweets, just in time for my CrossFit gym to do a 30-day Ladies-Only Challenge! All of us participating were weighed and had our body fat measured with calipers on day 1. Then we all had to do the baseline WOD, which we will do again in 30 days to see our progress.  Some of the ladies are doing strict 100% Paleo. I would not be one of those ladies, but I am going to make an effort to continue clean eating and sweets/booze only in moderation. Peach is going to be lean and mean, dammit!

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I was shocked to hit a personal best with my deadlift that day! Yay, me! But I’m not going to lie, this WOD had me wheezing, gasping, cramping and wishing burpees would go straight to fucking hell. It sucked, but I got three rounds plus 10 cleans. And then I played “dead starfish”and made a “sweat angel”. Gross. But cool.  But gross. Kinda.

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So tell me:

What diets/eating styles work best for you/your body? What’s your “food philosophy”?

Recipe Share: Clean Eats Galore

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As explained in my FoodWars post, I’ve decided to take a more relaxed approach in my diet because trying and failing to be strict Paleo was driving me batshit crazy. I’ve been way happier in my new plan these past three weeks with some good old common sense clean eating. I’m still figuring out the balance, but I can tell you that my body knows the difference. I am already leaner. I feel better. And that rocks.

Here’s a sneak peek into my clean eats…

Breakfast:

French toast scramble – courtesy of CarrotsNCake, I was skeptical about the banana/egg combo, but found I enjoy it on the mornings I want something sweet. One mashed banana, 1 whole egg, a few egg whites, cinnamon and a splash of vanilla. Scramble it up in a bit of coconut oil and top with a scoop of almond butter or PB2. Full till lunch.

Everyday Paleo Egg Cupcakes – not a fan of this name. Let’s call them Veggie and Sausage Mini Crust-less Quiches, mmkay? These lil nuggets are easy and portable, they let me play with my new destroyer of food processor, and they are delish. Make em the night before and you’re set for more than a few days for breakfast. The recipe states specific veggies to use, but bollucks to that. Throw in whatever you want. These had: zucchini, squash, carrots, onion and spinach plus low fat breakfast sausage. But word to the wise. Too much spinach and they WILL turn out quite St. Patty’s Day-inspired. You’ve been warned.

1st batch = WHOASPINACH. 2nd batch = better.

1st batch = WHOASPINACH. 2nd batch = better.

Snacks:

Greek yogurt and fruit – if I need a quick pick-me-up I’ll just cut up an apple and dip it in 0% fat plain greek yogurt that I’ve mixed with a splash of almond milk and a scoop of PB2. <– If you haven’t tried this, you must.

You can also spend an extra 5 minutes and make Coconut Cinnamon Apples to go with your yogurt/PB2 combo. Here’s how easy: Take your choice of apple, slice it up, saute it for a few minutes in a teaspoon of coconut oil and sprinkle with cinnamon at the end. HEAVEN, I SAY.

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Cereal w/ Almond Milk – I have a confession. I love cereal after dinner/before bedtime. Um. I may or may not have gone through a whole box of Peanut Butter Multi-Grain Cheerios in five days. Wee bit obsessed? Nah.

Lunches/Dinners:

Let’s face it, when you cook at home 90% of the time, you will get bored and some nights you’re just not feeling very Domestic Goddess-y.  When that happens, I’ll treat myself to a Chipotle salad or some other healthy eat-out option.

But here are a few of my no-fail at-home standards.

Peach’s Go-To Veggie Saute

  • Heat 1T coconut oil (or olive oil or bacon grease) in large, shallow skillet. (not a stock pot – potatoes become mushy if they don’t have air while cooking.)
  • Add to oil: 1 sweet potato, cut into 1in cubes. Cook potato until it becomes browned but not yet soft.
  • Add 1 sliced onion and 1 sliced red bell pepper. Cook together until onions and bell peppers are softened, but still firm.
  • Add 1 medium yellow squash and 1 medium zucchini, cut into quarter or half moons
  • Cook all together until potatoes are done and squash/zucchini are slightly softened but not mush.

I use this veggie saute for everything: breakfast scrambles, omelets, frittata (frittatii?), as a base for pot roast, shredded pork, or in my Spaghetti Squash Bake. I even throw it into salads.  I’d be lost without it!

Everyday Paleo’s Salmon Cakes were super easy and turned out wonderfully, minus one thing.

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HOW THE HELL AM I GONNA EAT ALL THESE?

The freezer was my friend. Next time half the recipe, Peach!

PaleOMG’s Italian Meatloaf? Whoa, momma.  It was so good it was gone before I could take any pictures. But then again, when are pictures of meatloaf ever sexy? Regardless, this is definitely a keeper in the recipe arsenal!

Hands down, saved the best for last.

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Peach’s Crockpot Curry Chicken  (adapted from PaleOMG’s Brazilian Curry Chicken)

  • 1.25-1.5 lbs boneless skinless chicken boobies.
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3 chunks each.
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup organic chicken broth
  • 4 TBS yellow curry powder
  • 1 TBS ground ginger
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Combine the coconut milk, broth and spices in the crock pot.
  2. Add the chicken boobies and sweet potato chunks. Make sure chicken is submerged in liquid.
  3. Cook for 3 hrs on medium, then flip the chicken boobies over.
  4. Cook another 3 hrs, or until the chicken boobies fall apart when you fork them. (Where is my brain today?!?!)
  5. Once here, I removed the chicken/potatoes from the liquid and set aside. Then I strained the liquid, because the coconut milk had gone kinda separated/weird on me. (Does this happen to anyone else?)
  6. Once liquid is strained and back in the crockpot, shred the chicken boobs with two forks and put the chicken into to the liquid to cook on low for another hour. This lets all the little chicken boobie-bits soak up all the yummy curry liquid. I left the sweet potatoes out of the crock pot at this point because they were plenty cooked and about to disintegrate.
  7. Serve it up with the sweet potatoes, a veggie saute and some avocados.
  8. Devour.

Hell On Wheels

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Yes, this entry is definitely categorized under Hot Mess.

There is a REASON we only roller skate as children. Or, it could just be me.  I suck at skating.  I also suck at rollerblading, ice skating, water skiing, skateboarding, snowboarding and snow skiing. So, pretty much anything that involves strapping my feet  –> which are attached to my stoopidlong legs –> which make up 75% of my stoopidtall body –> into some device that involves inertia-meets-gravity? Yeah, not having it.

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A little while ago my gym threw a social at a skating rink. Do me a favor and picture 20 grown men and women who do CrossFit. Now picture them on rollerskates.  Yep.  The same men who routinely kill it in the workouts that destroy me were now windmilling their arms and winding up on their asses. I tried and managed about 5 wobbly laps around the rink, but it was ugly.  I had to seriously focus on not being flattened by the little kids zipping around me, not staring too much at the teens who were humping the wall to the tune of the [explicit hip hop song] playing, and keeping an eye out for people suicidal enough to fall in my path. Did they not understand that STOPPING is not in my skillset?  Maybe I should have tried using one of the granny walkers (seen below). Safer, yes. Cool points? Maybe. I could make it sexy if I really tried.

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But, I will say that aside from the ‘I’m either gonna break my neck or kill a kid’ moments, it was a LOT of fun.

And then this was said:

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For the record, I did not say this.  I just wanted to be IN REAL SHOES and would have performed sexual favors to be rescued from this booty-rap death trap. What I did not count on was the way that the night would turn out.

I vaguely remember the following:

  • Sam Adams Winter Ale(s) – I lost count.
  • Learning a new dance called The Wobble.  Oh, you crazy twenty-somethings…
  • Flirting and being flirted with.
  • Playing board games at a different bar, while still drinking beer.
  • Telling my trainer friend that he really should shave his beard because he has such a good looking face. About 10 times.
  • Eating scrambled eggs, grits and a biscuit at 4am. #FAILEO
  • Falling asleep when the sun was coming up.

Oh man.  Most of the next day was spent on my couch recovering, thinking how much I’m too old for this shit. But even days later, I’m still smiling at how much fun it was.

Sometimes you’ve just gotta be a kid.

Sunday Style Share: Lands’ End Love and Peach’s Winter Addictions

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I’ve been a style junkie lately. I don’t know if it was hearing AB Chao’s talk at Camp Mighty, or reading Maggie’s post about it, or if I’m just giddy that my favorite style season is back, but so much fun has been had lately with my wardrobe!

Going all Vanna White on her VERY good points!

Going all Vanna White on her VERY good points!

First up, Lands’ End was a huge sponsor for Camp Mighty and part of their amazing generosity that weekend included gifting us a dress!!! Mine arrived yesterday and looklooklooklooklooklookie!!!

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it's perfect!

it’s perfect!

I cannot recommend this dress enough. It’s a faux wrap dress, pullover style, with 3/4 sleeves and an attached belt. One common design flaw with wrap-styles are that the tatas come flying out if you move around too much, but this dress stays put! Plus, the material is very soft but with enough weight to 1. drape well and 2. be thick enough that you don’t feel like all of God and creation is staring at your VPL*. As for sizes, what you see above is a size Small. In my opinion, LE runs a tad on the larger size, so I felt okay getting a Small and I’m glad I did. I definitely wouldn’t want it much tighter than this, but I still have enough breathing room and can move freely in it!  Thank you so much to Lands’ End for my new go-to LBD! If you’re looking for an affordable, flattering and comfortable dress, get this one (and they’re on sale right now!). GO!

*(Visible Panty Line)

Onto other styles I’ve rocked lately.

It helps that am a big fan of Fall and Winter in the South. Not only for the big F word (FOOTBALL), but also for the fact that it means the reappearance of the tall leather boots, the fuzzy hats, the bright scarves, and the cozy sweaters. Yes, please!! While I certainly don’t have the budget for the clothes I REALLY want, I’ve managed to come to a happy balance of quality pieces with inexpensive but cute basics.  Because … well, when you feel good, you look good.  And when you look good, you feel good! They’re like peas n carrots. 🙂

laid-back layers

Casual lunch: Laid-back layers

  • Sweater hoodie, burnout long sleeved tee, cami: Express
  • Skinny jeans: Target Mossimo Denim (they come in long lengths!)
  • Flats: Adidas
Cozy with a pop of color

Coffee Shop: Cozy with a pop of color

  • Sweater: Ann Taylor
  • Skinny jeans: Express Skyscraper Denim (long lengths here too!)
  • Scarf: Express
  • Boots: Frye Campus
Dinner: Leather it up!

Dinner: Leather it up!

  • Boots: DSW

I am not a huge makeup wearer or fanatic, but I do appreciate the good stuff. I’ve got MAC next to Cetaphil next to NARS next to Neutrogena in my arsenal. If I love it and it works, that’s what matters. When my generous and lovely roommate at Camp Mighty gifted me this Naked2 palette from Urban Decay, I had no idea how much I’d fall in love with it!

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These colors are perfect for my complexion and eye color! The 2-sided brush is fabulous quality and I’m having so much fun experimenting with color combos. Thank you, my fellow innie! 🙂

What I lack in my makeup prowess, I compensate with my addiction to winter hats.

the new lovelies

the new lovelies

  • Hats: Target. I kid you not. Get on my head!

I can’t post about style and not mention a huge key portion of my wardrobe – workout clothing. Uuuuuggggh, I finally caved and bought myself some Lululemon WunderUnders. If you haven’t read my post about how asscracks are a bad thing in CrossFit, go now. Trust me, these were a worthy investment and I have practically lived in them since I got them.

Lulus and fuzzy slippers = seksay!

Lulus and fuzzy slippers = seksay!

Now, who’s going to stop me from buying this for myself for Christmas? Oh, the temptation.

*drooooooooooool.

*drooooooooooool.