Monday, April 15, 2013

Ironman Dreams

When I was running my first marathon in St. Louis I passed a guy with an Ironman tattoo.
The guy on the left had the tattoo
Every since then I've always wondered, could I do an Ironman one day? Yesterday, Brian and I got one step closer by purchasing road bikes.

Adding triathlons to our life seems like a natural transition (I was even a competitive swimmer in the past). We've been talking about bikes for so long that we just decided to do it. After a few weeks of research, and swallowing the price tags (biking is way more expensive than running!), we came home yesterday with two shiny bikes.

I ended up with the Specialized Ruby after riding a few bikes. I really did not think I would feel a difference while riding and was going to make my decision on price, but man was I wrong. Some bikes were just uncomfortable. Others felt to short lengthwise. This one was just right. Think Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

When we got home we of course had to go out on a ride. Although the ride was short (I was tired from multiple test drives and my 8 mile run yesterday) it felt good and I can't wait to get more comfortable and really learn how to road bike.

Unfortunately, it is going to snow tomorrow and Wednesday so our riding dreams will need to be postponed until there is nicer weather. Thanks Colorado for never ending winter.

Does anyone have any Ironman advice? I am really considering this for a goal in the next few years.

In other news, my brother in law Jeff is running the Boston Marathon today! Go Jeff Go!! I wish I was there to run with him but hey, maybe next year right?

Alright I need to start getting ready for work, so I'll leave you will a weekly meal plan.

Melon Mojito Fish Tacos with grilled corn

Raspberry chipotle Pork with salad


Mexican casserole with Broccoli


Date Night

Friday, April 12, 2013

Salsa Verde Chicken

I didn't go for a run this morning. I just couldn't drag myself out of that I'm up though I wish I had gotten up earlier. Oh well. Maybe I will go for a run after work instead.

The idea of running after work is a good one but unfortunately rarely happens because after standing for most of the day the last thing I feel like doing is running when I get home. Typically, my pajamas are calling my name and I just want to relax.

At least it's Friday right?

The other night for dinner I made Salsa Verde Chicken with Cilantro Lime Quinoa. Brian had rave reviews of the meal, saying it tasted (and smelled) like something he would order in a restaurant. The meal was also incredible easy.

- 1 lb chicken tenders (chicken breasts/thighs would work well too)
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 yellow onion thinly sliced
- 1 green bell pepper thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 16 ounces salsa verde made with tomatillos (I used the Target brand)
- salt and pepper to taste

1.) Heat 1 teaspoon of oil over medium high heat in a large saute pan
2.) Add the chicken, season with paprika, oregano, salt and pepper and then brown on both sides (about 3-4 minutes per side). The chicken does not need to be cooked through at this point because it will cook more later.
3.) Remove the chicken from the pan, add the second teaspoon of oil and add the onions and peppers
4.) Saute the onions and peppers until browned and softened
5.) Add the chicken back in the pan and cover with the salsa
6.) Reduce the heat to a simmer, partially cover and cook for 10 minutes
7.) Serve with quinoa or rice and Enjoy!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Does this week seem to be flying by to anyone else? I can't believe it's already Thursday. Not that I'm complaining, we're only really 2 days away from the weekend!

The weather here has been very cold and snowy so far but supposedly is going to warm up today through the weekend. I'm hoping to do some outdoor running tomorrow and on Saturday. So far this week I have done a 4 mile run on Tuesday and then a sprint workout yesterday. The workout yesterday was made up of 7-400 meter runs at 9min/mile pace with a 0.2 mile walking interval in between.

Running this week has been great so far. I'm hoping to continue the trend with a 3 mile run tomorrow and then an 8 mile run this weekend.

When it comes to cooking, I'm all about taking something you know and modifying it slightly to make it new.

Cilantro Lime Quinoa Ingredients
- 1 recipe Perfect Quinoa 
- 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- zest and juice of 1 lime

1.) Cook the quinoa according the the directions
2.) Once the quinoa is cooked, stir in the the cilantro, zest, juice and season with salt and pepper
3.) Enjoy!

We enjoyed this quinoa along side Salsa Verde Chicken (recipe to follow tomorrow)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Greek burgers and homemade Tzatziki sauce

A few years ago, Brian and I were given a free grill. The grill is not the nicest but it has worked pretty well over the past few years. We've always said that once we settle down we will purchase a nice grill but now I'm not sure if we can wait that long.

The starter was out when we got the grill so we've been lighting it with a long lighter. Over the weekend we decided to go to Lowe's and pick up some new grates and starter to improve the grilling experience. When we were cleaning out the grill, we found some massive holes on the bottom of the grill as well as the elements that release the gas. No big deal we thought, at least it was clean now right?

Wrong. Now that the grill is clean it seems 75% of the gas comes out the holes in the back of the grill leaving just about no gas to heat the front. Bummer. I think the time has come to buy a new grill.

Anyone have any suggestions?

For these burgers, I whipped up some homemade light wheat burger buns and some tzatziki sauce.

Tzatziki sauce is one of the few condiments that I actually like. It just tastes so fresh that I can never get enough!

Ingredients for Tzatziki sauce
- 1 cup low fat plain yogurt (do not use flavored)
- 1 grated, peeled cucumber
- 3-4 tablespoons fresh chopped mint
- salt and pepper to taste

1.) Using paper towels or a kitchen towel, squeeze the cucumber to release the majority of the liquid. After squeezing you should have about 3/4 cup of grated cucumber.

2.) Mix the yogurt, cucumber and 3 tablespoons of mint. Taste for salt and pepper and then add more mint if you'd like.

3.) Keep in the refrigerator until you are ready to use and then enjoy! 

Ingredients for Greek Burgers
- 1 lb ground beef (mine was 88/12)
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 package frozen spinach, defrosted and squeeze dry
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped mint
- pepper to taste

1.) Mix all the ingredients together and then divide into 4-6 burger patties (depending on how big you like them)

2.) Grill over medium high heat until cooked to your liking!

3.) Toast the buns then top with tzatziki and enjoy!