LDRICHEL   48,280
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LDRICHEL's Recent Blog Entries

This Is Your Life

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

When I have a really rough run, I end up depending on my tunes pretty heavily to make it through to the end. There is one song that never fails to hit a nerve with me and really push me to that finish line. The lyrics are simply so powerful that I canít help but keep going.

Iíve placed a link to a fan-made YouTube video of the song below, which has the lyrics embedded for you to read as you listen. Take a listen and really think about the words and how you would answer the question in this song.

I feel that I can finally honestly say that I am not yet where I want to be, but I am certainly well on my way to getting there. So, now when I hear this song, I feel proud of myself and hopeful for the future.

It wasnít always this way. The first time I heard this song 7 years ago, I stopped in the middle of my workout and sobbed because I knew deep down what the answer was for me.

Have a listen and read along. Where are you right this very moment? And where do you want to be?

www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA2CpQWg2pA

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOVETASSIE 7/30/2012 8:37AM

    wow, just listened to this song, have never heard it before, and guess what?? It has just helped me make the biggest decision in my life so far, thank you!! I imagined listening this song in two scenarios, living where I live now or moving abroad, and that has reaffirmed me in my decision that I want to move abroad. Now I am going to make it happen and nobody is going to stop me! thank you so much :)

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CAROLZ1967 6/6/2012 8:58AM

    Loved the song. Not sure if I've heard it before. Might just add it to my ipod!

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SWEDE_SU 6/6/2012 5:37AM

    nice and thought provoking - thank you for sharing! emoticon

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FRESKA 6/6/2012 4:10AM

    nice. :) emoticon

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OVATIONGIRL 6/6/2012 12:01AM

    Loved this, had heard the song before, but never knew the band or listened closely. Shared the link with the weight loss group I am in on Facebook, know they will get a lot out of it. Thanks for the inspiration! :)

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JEANNINEMM68 6/5/2012 9:36PM

    Thanks for sharing the song. emoticon

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FRANCES-AGAPE 6/5/2012 8:54PM

    emoticon
for sharing

It is emoticon- just like YOU !


emoticon WE can do it!

BLESSINGS!

emoticon emoticon

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon


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RUN_BAKE_BLOG 6/5/2012 7:14PM

    emoticon
Do you know how emoticonyou are?

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SLIMLEAF 6/5/2012 5:07PM

    I hadn't heard it before either. Thought-provoking lyrics. Challenging, even.

Thanks for sharing.

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MYBLUEIRIS 6/5/2012 4:30PM

    Wow. That is a powerful song! This is my first time hearing it. Thank you for sharing! :)

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123ELAINE456 6/5/2012 4:04PM

  Great song. I have not hear it before this. Thanks for sharing it with us. God Bles You and Have a Wonderful Day and Week.

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CH0718 6/5/2012 3:12PM

    I've never heard this song before but I like it. Thanks for the food for thought...

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SHINYZALATA 6/5/2012 1:08PM

    amaizngg thank u for sharing :D:D:D emoticon

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ILIKETOZUMBA 6/5/2012 12:39PM

    Ooh, I hadn't heard this song before. I like it! Thanks for the heads-up and the musical food for though. :)

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COOP9002 6/5/2012 12:13PM

    Thanks for sharing.

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JENNCABA 6/5/2012 11:56AM

    emoticonGREAT SONG!!! emoticon

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REDGATEWOOD 6/5/2012 11:11AM

    Music really pushes me. I learned in a psychology class that I am fueled by music. I learn with music, I absorb information with music. I realized too I workout better to music. I have certain songs on my playlist that keep me going. Once you find those few songs that really motivate you, your workouts are easier.

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RAMONAFLOWERZ 6/5/2012 11:08AM

    WOW! Great song! Thanks for sharing!


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Take It Easy

Monday, June 04, 2012

So, I know it seems like Iíve been doing quite a lot lately in the way of fitness and running and all that good stuff. I have to be honest and admit that sometimes I worry that people that are new to SparkPeople or to healthy living in general will read some of the things I write, get inspired and then try to do too much too soon.

Itís interesting that I would post a warning like this, considering the fact that the moment I hear the words ďdonít try to do too much too soonĒ, I instantly get defensive. In fact, itís bordering on upset. I want to instinctively lash back at the person and say, ďHow dare you lecture me? Do you know my body? Do you know what Iím capable of? Do you think Iím stupid and wonít be careful and would knowingly do something to injure myself?Ē

Some of these folks are not qualified to say this to me. Others really are qualified Ė case in point, PAPAMIKIE who is a certified running coach. You can see his warning to me in my previous blog entitled ďImportant Information on RunningĒ.

But, if Iím truthful, it was difficult for me to get to the point with PAPAMIKIEís message where I calmed down enough to truly see what he was saying and take his advice as an expert in the field.

When it comes to this journey of health and fitness, our pride should take a back seat to an expertís wise advice.

That being said, I am not at ALL claiming to be ANY kind of expert. In fact, quite the opposite. I am nobody. I am not a certified personal trainer. I am just a beginning runner and, frankly, I just started this journey four months ago.

It would be a lie if I said I havenít worked hard to get to where I am today. I have worked hard. Iíve tracked my food religiously and denied myself plenty to stay within my calorie range most days. But Iíve also failed colossally and had some pretty bad eating days. Iíve worked running into my schedule, as if it were a work appointment. And I have not missed a day. However, I donít expect to be able to keep that appointment EVERY SINGLE time. Things happen. Iíve got three kids and a full-time job and SOMETHING will happen on some miserable day that will cause me to miss a run.

So I am not at all perfect. But I am disciplined. I am determined. And I have been successful.

The thing isÖI didnít start off this way. Yes, there was that day that I decided enough was enough and I was going to do this and do it right. I have not looked back since that day.

But, before that, there was a day that I decided enough was enough and guess what? I was going strong for a few months and then I got sick, went on vacation, got lazy and my health journey at that point ended. I was MIA from SparkPeople for 7 months Ė gaining weight and slowly killing my body the entire time.

Even when I came back to SparkPeople in February, I was still skeptical. Still doubting myself. I was tentatively tracking, sporadically adding activity and for the most part, avoiding a lot of hard truths about how I was treating my body. I still wasnít respecting myself. I started C25K and quit after 2 weeks. I continued to learn about health and my motivation for wanting to get healthy. I thought a lot about my life. I started C25K again.

It wasnít until May 6th (3 months after I had re-started on SparkPeople) that I finally ďgot itĒ. That was the day that things shifted in my brain and in my heart and the healthy lifestyle took hold. This is when it finally began to feel second nature.

What Iím saying isÖif you are just starting out with SparkPeople or exercising or making small healthy changes to your diet, donít despair. You can bet that you wonít be able to meet your calorie range every single day. You wonít be able to run 2 miles your first time out. You may have trouble just getting your body to even shuffle along. Or walking might even be tough for you. One of the cornerstones of this site is starting small. Very small changes made gradually WILL change your entire outlook and your life. You can read inspiring blogs all day long on here and get excited about victories that your SparkFriends are achieving. Thatís a wonderful way to start a spark in your own life!

But one of the most important lessons I am learning through all of this is not to compare my progress, my body, my diet, my running program, my weight loss to anyone else. Because it wonít be the same. My body doesnít respond the same as anyone elseís body. My body is unique. My personality is unique. And this is MY journey. Not someone elseís.

Be motivated by your SparkFriends. Be happy for them when they achieve. Understand that something that might seem small to them could be monumental for you and vice versa. And both are equally spectacular. And be proud of yourself when you see progress, whether that be a perfect week of eating within your calorie range or one simple choice to eat a salad for lunch instead of a burger.

We are all here to be the best that we can be. Together, we can get there. Do your thing, friend. And Iíll do mine. And we will each be victorious in our own special way.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KEIPONY 6/8/2012 4:49PM

    WOW!! Perfect timing, just what I needed to hear. Thanks for the inspiration. emoticon

This moment I call a "God Wink" (just in the moment of despair, He brings someone, something, some moment into your life to show you the way)

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TIFFY0906 6/5/2012 3:16PM

    Great blog

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CATDUG19 6/5/2012 9:49AM

    You took the words right out of my mouth! I too am relatively new to a healthy lifestyle and it has been about the small changes that add up to a huge difference. I think it is hard when you get to the "That;s it stage" it just do baby steps because you feel so much guilt for getting yourself in this shape. Thank you for your blog I look forward to hearing your honest interpretation of your journey emoticon

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LIZALOT 6/5/2012 5:32AM

    Another great blog. Agree with all the others here, you do a great job of inspiring and spreading the spark!! Keep it up!

emoticon emoticon

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SWEDE_SU 6/5/2012 4:53AM

    this dual role of spark is fascinating, really - to be motivated by others and to provide motivation too - you do such a fantastic job of it, keep it up! emoticon

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AWOOD1973 6/5/2012 3:43AM

    Fantastic blog! You never fail to inspire, or keep it real! And way to listen to your body and what it needs to be happy and healthy! emoticon

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SHINYZALATA 6/5/2012 3:08AM

    thank you for sharing and inspiring us as usual :)
u r amazing emoticon

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VIVID1106 6/4/2012 11:48PM

    Thanks for the knowlege that I am not the only one who doesn't quite "get it" yet.( you months ago.. me right now) I know what i need to do I just can't seem to get myself to do it! Thanks for showing me there is a light at the end of the tunnel I just gotta find it on my own way with a little help from everyone elses shinning examples of success hopefully i will find my own way sooner rather then later!

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SHEKINA721 6/4/2012 11:16PM

    Great blog! I really needed a reminder to stop comparing myself to others in all aspects of my life - including dieting. Also nice to know that I am not the only one that falls off the wagon occasionally - I thought something was wrong with me... the important thing is to keep picking myself up! Thanks for the inspiration :)

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FITMAMA4EVER 6/4/2012 10:52PM

    Wonderful insights! It's a great reminder that we don't usually "get it" the first time, but that if we plug away at it hopefully something will click and change our perspective forever. I started really working at it last December and did well for 3 months and then-like you said-had issues that interrupted things. I instead focused on maintaining my weight loss and then recently got back into the routine of daily exercise to kick start the weight loss again. I spoke with another friend about the 5K in September I'm planning. I figure the more people I tell, the less likely I'll be to chicken out!!
Keep up the great work girl!
emoticon

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ILIKETOZUMBA 6/4/2012 10:26PM

    Well said, all of it. Great reminders for us all to bear in mind!

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123ELAINE456 6/4/2012 9:58PM

  Awesome Blog!!! Yes you need to start very slow and take it easy at first. You need to pay attention to what your body is telling you at all times. Be careful what you do so you don't injure or hurt yourself in anyway, shape or form. I hope this helps someone too. God Bless You and Have a Wonderful Day and Week.

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HEALTHY4HIM 6/4/2012 9:20PM

    Great blog! Very interesting (and often frustrating), the part about our brains "getting in gear", isn't it? I've talked about it plenty with my friends... how very strange it is that a person can hate where they're at.... know what they need to do to change it... and yet feel powerless to do so. It's like there are several pieces of some invisible puzzle that either line up... or they don't.

I'm thrilled that my "pieces" are cooperating right now and SO very happy that yours are too. You're right - each journey is unique. And for those whose pieces aren't fitting together right now, keep on doing the best you can where you can. Eventually things will come together!

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FRANCES-AGAPE 6/4/2012 8:57PM

    emoticon

Your "spark" is so emoticon

I HAVE feel shame & guilt while
reading ALL you've ACCOMPLISHED
in such a short time in your blogs

I HAVE been comparing myself to You &
all your exercising.
It is NOT your fault, but that is how I
ended up overdoing it yesterday &
am paying today with pains & all-day headache.

Again, it's MY fault, NOT YOURS !

emoticon
Keep up YOUR emoticon-ness !!

Have a Terrific Tuesday

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

BLESSINGS !

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon


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JEANNINEMM68 6/4/2012 8:35PM

    What a great blog. I find that I am always comparing myself to others. I really need to remember that I am my own person and what works for someone else may not work for me. Thank you for giving me that reminder.

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GODIVADSG 6/4/2012 8:30PM

    My hubby... a long time runner since 1976 always has good advice. He told me to get comfortable with a 5K before attempting anything else. He always told me to build a solid base. That way I could add one mile at a time (once a week) when the time came. ( and that worked) He also reminds me ( even now) that I need to crawl before I walk! Hang in there and take it easy on yourself. Listen to your body. It does speak clearly to us if we pay attention. emoticon

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WARMSPRINGDAY 6/4/2012 7:08PM

    "But one of the most important lessons I am learning through all of this is not to compare my progress, my body, my diet, my running program, my weight loss to anyone else. "

So true - it is one of the reasons for my sometimes discontent. I believe it is also one of the reasons that "I am never satisfied with anything I do" as I said in my last blog, because I am comparing myself with others, therefore disappointed in myself.

And like you, it's hard for me to hear words of caution, even from my trainer. But if it weren't for her, I might be injured by now with running when I wasn't ready and pushing through pain in my elbows.

Great blog!

Good stuff.

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LINDAK25 6/4/2012 6:54PM

    You are so right! I really needed to hear this today.

I keep telling myself that everyone has their own journey. Sometimes it's hard to hold back competitiveness and to realize that the only person you're competing against is yourself. The exercise is hard for me. As they say, the mind is willing. Now if my body would just get the message. It's hard to go slowly when you're motivated!

Thanks so much for your support. It helps.

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AMANDA_C 6/4/2012 6:42PM

    So true! My huge accomplishment may be nothing to you (or another) and vice versa....thank you for the reminder!

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SRBSRB26 6/4/2012 6:38PM

    I appreciate your sharing.

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MARATHONDAD 6/4/2012 6:37PM

    well said everyone's body is different most people just look out for each other I guess. Nut I was defensive the same way so i know where you are coming from lol. good luck on your journey I am glad I can see you go through this journey its lots of fun!!!!

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How I Ran 3 Miles Without Stopping

Sunday, June 03, 2012

After my crazy fast run yesterday, I felt great. But, later on around bedtime, I started to notice that my entire body was feeling the morning's run. This made me a bit nervous, as today was supposed to be my Long Slow Run.

In a normal training schedule, I wouldn't schedule a back-to-back run anywhere near the Long Slow Run. I would definitely leave a rest day before my LSR. But, this week, things got a little wonky because I'm starting my official half marathon training schedule next week. So, my days were going to need to shift a little bit...also, I had wanted to run a distance of 5k "with" one of my SparkFriends yesterday...so that threw me off a bit.

This morning, the alarm went off at 7am and I was NOT in the mood. I think it's important for those of you who say you are inspired by me to understand that I have days where I want to be lazy and I DON'T WANT TO RUN!!! Yes, I am mortal. Lol.

But...to be honest...this is my first REAL LSR and I know that these are so important in training. So, I forced myself to put my running clothes on. I figured I'd feel better when I got out there. Took a VERY slow walk to the trail and was not instantly refreshed by the morning air, as I usually am. Still tired. Ugh.

Got to the trail and this is the part where I usually start running. This run would be different, though, because as the name suggests...it is to be a LONG, SLOW RUN.

I remembered the book I just finished reading (which I highly recommend for ALL beginning runners trying to lose weight) called "Run Your Butt Off". In this book, they introduce a running program for weight loss that gradually builds slowly (somewhat like C25K). But they had a test panel of people that did the program and reported back the entire 12 weeks. By the end of the program, every single person had become "a runner". There were a few that had a hard time getting into it the first few weeks. They said they hated running...even 3 weeks in. At that point, the authors and coaches gave them a tip...SLOW YOUR PACE. Amazingly, every single one of the participants reported that running was a COMPLETELY different story when they just slowed down.

This morning, I knew 4 miles would be tough. I determined to go as slow as possible so I could make it through the long haul. My feet were NOT wanting to do this. Ankles were a bit sore from yesterday. I started off running REALLY weird. It was a strange, limping run and I knew it was because I was being overprotective of my bad ankle.

I thought to myself, "Leah, this is going to get you injured...stop it now. Settle in." I say this to myself a lot in the beginning of runs (especially when I'm ready to say 'screw this today')...SETTLE IN. So I kept going...VERY slowly...literally felt like I was shuffling (barely lifting my feet of the ground) for AT LEAST half a mile. I almost felt like I was walking fast and not running. It took me a good LONG time to find a decent rhythm on this run...in fact, I hesitate to call it a run. The word "jog" is much more appropriate for what went down today.

I felt like I was going half my normal speed, but the clock didn't matter today. I finally was able to focus more on my music and forget about my feet. Then, I settled into a good slow pace and got into my zone.

This morning, I learned exactly what those test subjects from "Run Your Butt Off" learned. When I slowed down, running 4 miles was a COMPLETELY different experience. I never once found myself breathing heavily...never once got winded in the slightest bit. Just breathed normally through the entire run! Because I had no problems breathing and because my legs weren't bothering me since I was running so slowly, I just kept going. And I ran non-stop for 3 miles!!! It was about 1/2 hour!! I felt like I could have kept going indefinitely...but there was amonster blister on my left foot and I ended up walking the final mile.

Here's the most amazing part of all...when I looked at my run app later, it showed that my time for the 3.0 miles that I ran was 46 minutes. Um....what? I RAN the entire thing without stopping and it ended up being almost the same time as when I almost kill myself trying to run faster and taking walk breaks to catch my breath. You know, my trainer has told me this and told me this...but I guess I just never believed him. Sorry, Robert!!!

Kind of a mindblowing discovery actually. This is actually going to make me re-think my entire training strategy.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KATHYGOULDSMITH 6/24/2012 1:03AM

    I am inspired because i am the slowest runner on the planet! Much slower than you, but hey! Im doing it.


KG

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HOLLIROCON 6/15/2012 5:00PM

    I'll definitely keep this in mind on my next run.

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ZENSTEPH 6/12/2012 2:40AM

    Congratulations! Thanks for sharing, it helps me feel better. I've been stuck at 4 weeks on a C25K due to shin splints, etc.

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TONYVAND1 6/11/2012 10:34AM

  emoticon Thanks for sharing.

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ASTRALL 6/11/2012 3:17AM

    Well done to you for sticking with it! emoticon

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SHRINK_U 6/11/2012 2:13AM

    So awesome!

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KARLINJAY 6/10/2012 6:56PM

  Settle in...I am totally going to try using that tomorrow! Thank you and congrats!

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STRONGCHOICE 6/10/2012 6:01PM

  I am new to running and I just started reading that book. Thanks for sharing!! emoticon

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SDORTON2 6/9/2012 10:31AM

  I am just gearing up to start running myself. I have never done this and hope to get a group together close by. Loved reading this post, thanks! I am really excited to get up and going with this.

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WINNIE1978 6/9/2012 6:43AM

    I've been running slow since I started running because I'm trying to build up my endurance... I'm not super worried about my time right now. I've also noticed that the days when I do go faster and push harder I still end up with about the same time/distance as when I just go slower and enjoy the run. Weird, huh?

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DUSTYPRAIRIE 6/8/2012 6:20PM

    emoticon

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HEIDIROYCE 6/8/2012 1:00PM

    emoticon

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TAMTAMM 6/8/2012 8:33AM

    emoticon

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JENNAAW 6/8/2012 7:29AM

    Totally love your post; you are doing an awesome job! I would so love to get myself to a similar point!

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KBRADFORD88 6/7/2012 10:27PM

    slow runs work.

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ZZYYGGY2 6/7/2012 6:32PM

    Great job. Keep on running.

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GOING-STRONG 6/7/2012 6:24PM

    I'm a slow runner also... but every now and then I will do a run with intervals where I go as fast as I can for about a minute then slow back down to my normal pace. If I did that all the time I would HATE running. Earlier this year I was able to do a Half Marathon without any walking by taking a slow easy running approach. A year ago I never would have believed that possible. Oh.. wanted to mention that I got some special two ply running socks at REI. They were spendy (I think about $15-16) but they are blisterproof. Invest in a couple of pairs and you (and your feet!) will be happy you did.

Spark on!

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HIKETOHEIGHTS 6/7/2012 4:48PM

    emoticon Very Nice!

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SANDEBUE 6/7/2012 2:55PM

    Can't run at all...never have....always hated running. I'll look for the book.

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CORINA-MOMOF4 6/7/2012 2:46PM

    WTG!! And congrats on training for the half marathon - I just ran my first half marathon this past Saturday!

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PRSPLACE 6/7/2012 2:41PM

    thanks for posting! very inspiring!

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NWFL59 6/7/2012 10:45AM

    Loved your description of how you felt and motivated yourself to push through and continue on. I can so relate to those feelings and find myself reacting to my own exercise program similar some days. Its a constant struggle but I enjoy the rewards once I'm done and in a more positive frame of mind. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PHOTOFIT 6/7/2012 10:16AM

    emoticonnice!

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SUSANSIXTYFIVE 6/7/2012 9:56AM

  I found your comments very helpful. I'm 65, I just started Spark People and I ran three times so far without any instructions. I was going very slowly but not feeling very good about my pace. I kept thinking that it wasn't really running if I was going this slowly and I couldn't help comparing myself to the many runners who would pass me by on the boardwalk. So, now I'm going to get that book that you recommend and run even slower, so that I'm not out of breath at all. Thanks so much.

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PATSYJ 6/7/2012 9:41AM

  THANK YOU for this reminder! I NEVER EVER could run when I was a kid as I was always winded and got side stitches. (I'm pretty confident I have asthma but slow running is possible.) I tried running again at 40 and the #1 thing that allowed me to actually enjoy running was to SLOW DOWN. And you are right, it feels like you could walk faster sometimes but as long as you can go slow and not stop. It is such an awesome feeling the first time I ran (I like the term plod rather than run) 2 miles without stopping. And your're right about time too - running slow without stopping vs. running fast and stopping to catch your breath = same time and more enjoyable! :)

I needed this boost today as i'm just getting back into running again. I will look for the book.



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MELOSPARKLE 6/7/2012 9:40AM

    GREAT job!!!

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LNTSMOM 6/7/2012 9:27AM

  Way to go!! I also just started learning to run and I'm loving it! I did my first 3 miles without stopping last Sat during my first 5K and now it just motivates me to keep going. Yesterday I ran 3 miles & shaved 2 minutes off my normal time. I do find my first couple of miles to be my hardest but after that I'm good to go.

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LDMCNIEL 6/7/2012 9:12AM

    emoticon

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OLIVIANIGHT 6/7/2012 9:05AM

    I've considered taking up running for a while but there's part of me that hates the thought of it. After reading this though, I'm seriously tempted to give it a go. Maybe if I can get my hands on that book.
Thanks for sharing, your blog's really inspirational.

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ANDRAYAYA 6/7/2012 8:50AM

    Thank you for sharing!

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VIRGINIASR 6/7/2012 8:40AM

  Thank you for an inspirational account that I read twice. As a 64-year-old-runner-wanna-be, I feel empowered.

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BUFFALOKAY 6/7/2012 8:08AM

    Thanks for sharing your discovery. Best of luck on the HM training.
emoticon

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STEPHLOKI 6/7/2012 7:45AM

    LOL, you must have been so puzzled by this realization! I also remember being totally surprised that a slow run and a run-walk-run can give you the same results in the end.

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REGILIEH 6/7/2012 6:52AM

    WTG!!!

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NYKIMMIE 6/7/2012 6:42AM

    I just got clearance from the dr to start running,yeah. Thanks for the tip about the book,i will look at the library today. Awesome blog!

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SPIRIT42013 6/7/2012 12:52AM

    I use to love to run! I hope that I lose enough weight to be able to run safely!

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SRHALLIN 6/6/2012 10:23PM

    Awesome! Congratulations on running 3 miles in one go. I'm officially jealous! :D Great tips for beginning runners, though. I'll try them out as circumstances permit!

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TXGRANDMA 6/6/2012 9:35PM

    emoticon emoticon

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POETLKNG2LOSE 6/6/2012 8:54PM

    That is great! I was running for a while myself until i hurt my foot. Want to start again if my ankle ever stops swelling up.

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WICHYWOMAN 6/6/2012 7:47PM

    Nice!! I've 'run' a half marathon earlier this year and did no formal training for it. My avg. mile was a 14 min. mile and I DID walk a good chunk of it. I've been quite frustrated with not being able to run consistently for more than short distances.
Your description is the first time I've 'got' it in going slower. People that say "Run slower" don't make sense to me b/c I think "how slow is slow?" I will try the idea of fast walking! Tomorrow when I go out.
Keep it up!! If I can do it w/o the training then I know you can!!!

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CROETHLE1 6/6/2012 7:47PM

    emoticon emoticon

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TUPPERWARE1 6/6/2012 6:36PM

    I think you should shout I did it.Way to go! emoticon

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SBNORMAL 6/6/2012 5:56PM

  WoW!

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CUDDLYPOLARBEAR 6/6/2012 5:53PM

    great job

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THATWIFE1 6/6/2012 5:15PM

  That is AWESOME! I hate getting on the treadmill, and have started to run outside by my house has a huge hill n gravel and first day HATED it- I will do what you did- slow down. There is a run on the 30th- 3 miles-YIKES! But I'm going to make myself do it just to prove to myself I can! Thanks for the honest inspiration.

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ALMACAN 6/6/2012 4:31PM

    Way to go!! emoticon

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TISTEN23 6/6/2012 2:39PM

    Great!!! That is awesome, sorry about the blister though!!!

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MYLAUREN2 6/6/2012 2:37PM

    emoticon emoticon

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TOTALFOCUS 6/6/2012 1:41PM

    Great job! emoticon

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TMOORE073 6/6/2012 1:26PM

    Finally a holiday for Runners! Happy National Running Day! emoticon emoticon

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Best Morning I've Had In Quite Some Time!

Saturday, June 02, 2012

So, it's no secret. Yesterday I was a little blue. The weather was dreary. A friend of mine is suffering a bit and I was sick with worry and didn't sleep well at all on Thursday night. Plus, I was just a little overwhelmed at work and it was a rest day, which does affect my mood. Just a blah day in general. But...slept very well last night and it is amazing what a difference that can make.

Woke up super early this morning and got my little guy up to take him to the Farmer's Market with me. He and I have never gone to the market alone together and he was literally shaking with excitement the entire time. He just loves this special time with his mama all alone! He helped me by choosing vegetables and paying all the farmers. Of course, they all told him how big a boy he was and how he was such a great helper for his mom. It was so much fun!!! And we got it all done by 8:30am.



Farmer's Market Bliss

When we got home, I sat him down with a bowl of that kettle corn and he watched a show, while I went out for a run (no worries...hubby was home! Lol!)

Oh my goodness, you guys. The temp outside was PERFECT this morning and everything was just bursting with color and freshness. I could not have engineered a more GORGEOUS day for a run. Once again, running "with" a fellow sparker who was doing a 5k this morning.



I had a good feeling going into this one. But I worried when I noticed I wasn't making much progress and 11 minutes had already passed. I worked on a longer running interval in the middle of the run and took a couple walking breaks to catch my breath. I was making decent time and was actually a little ahead. But I was getting tired. However, my run app indicated that it was still possible for me to meet my goal of a 40 minute 5k. I kept things slow and steady for as long as possible because I knew tiring myself out would not work. Near the end, I was walking and I saw that I had one minute left. I was exhausted...but, you guys, I could SEE the end and I had 0.1 miles left!!!!! So I just sprinted that last 0.1.

I made it in 40 minutes flat. I kid you not, I felt like I would hurl and when I finished, I splayed out on my driveway (which felt SO nice and cool). I was SO proud of myself. And nothing on my body hurts at all. I slowly cooled down and stretched out really well and just laid there on the driveway for about half an hour before going inside. What a rush!!!

Next on the Super Saturday agenda? Trying out Chef Meg's Raspberry Lemon Scones recipe.

Here is the recipe: recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detai
l.asp?recipe=2066103


I've been dying to make these for weeks and I bought all organic ingredients and the recipe calls for whole grain flour. I brought Little Man in on the action and we created a photo journey of scone creation for you.

A note: if you are OCD like me and you are going to let a 4 yr old help you with this recipe, you must understand that your kitchen will be destroyed by the end of this. Just know this and accept this fact and be OK with it.

A second note: Let's just acknowledge the mess in my living room before I even show you any pictures of my son with said mess in the background. OK...moving on.

So, we started off trying to line a baking sheet with parchment paper.



Well, listen...Mama's a lil OCD, so we used tape and wrapped it like a present. Don't judge me!



Next, we got to put butter in a bowl and chase it all around with a mixer. Boy liked this game.



Then, we added sugar and made it look like mashed potatoes.



Then, eggs and vanilla and evaporated milk.



Most delicious-smelling step was adding the zest of one lemon. Man child about blew a gasket when I pulled that grater out of the cabinet. Super excitement! Don't judge...admit it, you *know* you get a *little* excited when you get to use the grater.



Dry ingredients time! And, since I bought my whole grain white flour in bulk from the co-op grocery store and I was trying to scoop it out of a flimsy little fruit/veggie bag, we got super dirty. Yay!





Let's throw it all together. Chef Meg says "mix just until combined". Uhhh...yeah right. This stuff was not coming together...so, we used our hands. It was crumbly. Then, she says "gently stir in raspberries". Into this crumbly mess of non-dough? Okaaaay.



Here's where this gets good!!!! So, it says "turn the DOUGH onto the baking pan and form an 8-inch circle".



At this point, it's really not sticking together because I honestly think we should have increased the evaporated milk JUST a little bit...by maybe 1/4 cup???

J-Man and I were confused.



Then, it asks you to cut into 12 pieces. Riiiiggght.



OK, hold up here. Do you SEE that little slacker in the right-hand bottom corner???! I had a heck of a time getting these things separated by half an inch. But I was all, "Okay, Chef Meg...I will trust you."



The finished product was an interesting texture, but of course, mighty tasty!!! Gotta say...yummiest 172 calories I've had in quite awhile!



Next time...MORE EVAPORATED MILK!!!!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VBA2009 2/26/2013 9:20AM

    emoticon

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NANAGO1204 7/2/2012 5:04PM

    emoticon Looks like a fun time was had by all...especially those of us reading about it! Kids are a lot of fun in the kitchen...can't wait for my grandsons to old enough to help out! Well done!!

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ROJAKHAN 7/1/2012 3:28PM

    Yummmmy

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KATBOXJANITOR 6/23/2012 7:27PM

    Great reminder of the fun memories you can build while sharing wonderful experiences.



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DEBK0923 6/21/2012 9:25AM

    Those are wonderful pictures, good blog

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MARYM1962 6/12/2012 12:05PM

  WOW - what a busy day - I miss my LITTLE MAN - my grandson moved to the DC area and I am stuck in the Mid-South - he would have whipped up the scones all by himself (but he is 7 instead of 4 - he does a lot of things on his own but would have left the clean up for a grown up!).

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DANAK2011 6/6/2012 2:06PM

    You're an awesome mama! keep the spark going!

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1GROVES2 6/6/2012 12:18PM

    What fun reading your blog! I love all your descriptions of everything! You include every detail and I can feel your emotions through it...hey and your little man is a doll! Thanks for sharing, it was both a fun read and an inspiration!

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TODAYIAM 6/5/2012 11:04PM

    I love all the pictures! You are doing great and great time on that run!!

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DEARTOMYHEART 6/5/2012 2:27PM

  Great Job on your run!! What memories your little guy will have with his adorable mommy. I so miss those days. Thanks so much for sharing. Great Blog.. emoticon emoticon

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MARYHENNIG 6/5/2012 11:02AM

  Thanks for posting....that story will surely chase the blues away.

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MOMMABOOMS 6/5/2012 7:50AM

    Loved your blog. Thanks for the reminder of my younger days with my kids.

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GINGERPAWZ 6/5/2012 7:46AM

    I have memories of cooking with my now 12 year old when he was younger. Those were fun times. He still talks about being a chef when he grows up. We can have fun while teaching our little ones life skills. Hope you have an emoticon day with whatever you do.

Take care,

Sharon

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LSIG14 6/4/2012 8:14PM

  There is nothing better than the pure joy of cooking with kids - I miss those times so much. You certainly seem to have your priorities straight...living and teaching healthy ways while enjoying every moment of being a Mom! They do grow up so fast!!!

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PACKERMAN2 6/4/2012 7:23PM

    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful experience. Your son is very lucky to have
such a multi-tasking mom. Some of my greatest memories are of me and my son or
him and his dad in the kitchen.

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HANOVERLADY 6/4/2012 5:00PM

    Looks like fun! My mom used to say "it all goes in one stomach" so I was not to worry if things didn't look quite right - it wasn't going to look too good in the tummy anyway. Taste is what matters!

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SERASARA 6/4/2012 4:32PM

  emoticon

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TARAH85 6/4/2012 4:21PM

    I am so glad you told us about your experience making those bars. I am totally gonna try them (with more milk)! They look awesome, and your son seems so great. Thank you!

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GUINSMITH 6/4/2012 2:35PM

    next time add a tablespoon and check you may need more than 1 of water humidity or lack of it can make a recipe vary from place to place. Scones are suppose to be crumbly but not too crumbly.

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PUDDLEBY 6/4/2012 1:52PM

    Your son thought you were making scones, while all the time you were really building memories (and kitchen skills!). Nice blog.

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BATMANSWIFE1 6/4/2012 12:15PM

  You go girl!

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VONBLACKBIRD 6/4/2012 12:04PM

    o what fun to cook with kids...Looks like it turned out great and a lot of fun for you both.

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BOBANDTY 6/4/2012 11:46AM

    I'm inspired to make these with my kids now! Thank you! emoticon

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MADDIEMADKINS 6/4/2012 11:36AM

    Your pictures make me smile!
emoticon

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ROGERSBABE1 6/4/2012 11:07AM

    Wonderful!

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MIRANDA_LYNN84 6/4/2012 10:44AM

    WoW...looks like you both had a lot of fun. I enjoy baking with my children and just observing them and seeing how happy they are to have responsibilities such as pouring the milk and mixing the ingredients. emoticon

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CRINKLYMONKEY 6/4/2012 10:38AM

    This is such a cute blog with your son. These are memories he will never forget. emoticon
That is awesome about your time on your run/walk! You are doing so well. How long did it take to get to that 40 minutes? emoticon

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REDHEADMOM2U 6/4/2012 10:24AM

    beautiful day!

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EFFRAYECHILDE 6/4/2012 10:11AM

    Looks like so much fun.

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JENNIFERSTAM 6/4/2012 10:04AM

  Nice pictures added to blog

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ALMEEKER 6/4/2012 10:00AM

  Congrats on your lovely supermom morning!!! And what a lovely story with pics. I will most certainly excuse your messy living room, I see actual carpet, so it's not as bad as mine LOL.

I may be able to help with the scones a bit here, they are all about "technique" rather than "ingredients". Was your butter room temperature? With scones that can make all the difference, soft butter holds more dry ingredients than cold. As for the actual "mixing" business, you my friend need a pastry cutter. Handy little gadget with a handle on one side and wires on the other. Often a recipe will read "cut" the flour into the butter/sugar/egg mixture or "cut" the dry ingredients into the wet), it works a bit like a potato masher. You can certainly use your hands, but it's faster with a cutter. More milk might have been helpful to make a cohesive dough, but a scone is supposed to be rather dry (so you can dip it in your cuppa tea cheerio). Too much moisture in your dough will yield a hockey puck, the boy will love them, but not to eat.

Onto the circle of dough. Start with a ball then pat it down to about 1" thick and slice it into 12 pieces like a pizza (thereby avoiding the slacker in the corner). Although I've eaten scones in lots of different shapes, they are most often triangular or crescent in shape.

Comment edited on: 6/4/2012 10:02:18 AM

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DOTTY7267 6/4/2012 10:00AM

    You and your son made it look so fun. . .I almost want to do some baking myself emoticon

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VADAVICTORIA 6/4/2012 9:55AM

    glad you had a great morning! :)

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JLEMUS1 6/4/2012 9:51AM

    They look awesome...yum yum...

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DEBLYNN323 6/4/2012 9:50AM

    emoticon

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DUSTYPRAIRIE 6/4/2012 9:19AM

    You brought a big smile to my face!

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HLOCHRIDGE 6/4/2012 9:17AM

    Such fun times!!! Treasure these moments!

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JLMALLETTE 6/4/2012 9:00AM

    Very nice/
love the pics of mommy and son time-precious!

Comment edited on: 6/4/2012 9:01:54 AM

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FARIS71 6/4/2012 8:35AM

    Awesome! I made banana bread with my 3 kiddos this weekend and totally understand the mess! And I can't wait til our farmer's market gets rolling for the summer. Last summer they didn't have too many farmers so each time we went we ended up getting baked goods instead. oie!

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DROPOFHONEY 6/4/2012 8:28AM

    Love the Blog.. haha the photos showing the progression of it really helped to visualize your story..

Congrats on the run and more congrats on doing it within 40 minutes..!!! emoticon

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WALLINMW 6/4/2012 8:28AM

  yay1

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RSTAPLE 6/4/2012 8:03AM

  Those look great!

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LEANMEAN2 6/4/2012 7:19AM

    It sounds to me like you're doing great, Mom!

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LRSILVER 6/4/2012 7:14AM

    Sounds like a great day.


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MSTAPLE1 6/4/2012 7:13AM

  Looks good!

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NAYNAY69 6/4/2012 7:07AM

    Wonderful!!!
I love baking with my Grands!

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Way to go Mom!

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CAROLZ1967 6/4/2012 7:05AM

    LOVE the photo journal of it. So great you let your son help! That's a tough one for me. I know I need to relax and let them.....but it's hard, thinking of the mess and extra work it causes. BUT I know the bonding and lessons they can learn from helping us are important and special. Maybe that should be a goal of mine this summer too. :-) You both will treasure these photos in years to come. Thanks for sharing!

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NIKO27 6/4/2012 6:28AM

    emoticon

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METISMOM 6/4/2012 6:15AM

    Looks Like you two had a blast ! emoticon emoticon

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EZRIN101 6/4/2012 3:22AM

    Nice work!! emoticon

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Farmer's Market Favs

Friday, June 01, 2012

Hey SparkPeeps. Today is Friday, which is all well and good. But tomorrow...tomorrow is the BEST day. Farmer's Market Day!

If you have a Farmer's Market in your town and haven't had a chance to check it out, I highly recommend it. Everything's fresh and delicious and a lot of it is organic too.

You might be surprised at what you can find there too. It's not all fruits and veggies. In fact, my favorite indulgences - and my very first purchases every week - include a fresh roasted cup of Egyptian coffee and a delicious asparagus egg tart or a homemade tamale with fresh green mole sauce. With deliciousness in tow, I begin my leisurely Saturday morning by taking one "lap" around to look at all the goods. Then, second time around, decide which items to purchase and take home.

Here are my Top 5 Farmer's Market finds - most of these I buy weekly. Because they are just SO good!

1. Spring Mix



I will admit...I have a special "salad guy". I don't know what it is about his spring mix, but I bought it one time last year and it was the most delicious and flavorful salad I've ever had! I'm talking JUST the green portion. After that one time, he never appeared again for the rest of the summer and I whined to my Farmer's Market Buddy, Christina, every single week, "WHERE is my salad guy???"

2. Heirloom Tomatoes



These sometimes look weird, color-wise. But they are delicious. There is just nothing like a fresh, Farmer's Market tomato. Well, maybe home grown...but if you don't have the discipline to garden (like me), Farmer's Market is your next best bet.

3. Green Onions



Green onions are standard and they are cheap in the grocery store. But you have never seen green onions like they have at the local market. They are, in my opinion, one of the best subtle ways to flavor a salad or really any sort of food. They are particularly great in eggs!

4. Goat Cheese



One of my favorite booths at the market is the goat cheese booth. There are at least 10 samples of different sorts of goat cheese, including CHOCOLATE (which actually tastes like chocolate cream cheese). So delicious! My personal favorite is garlic and herb. This stuff is pricey, but a wonderful splurge every so often.

5. Grass-Fed Beef*



*apologies to vegetarians if this grosses you out!

Just as I have my "salad guy", I also have my "meat guy". This farmer raises his cattle as grass-fed all the way up until just a couple weeks before slaughter and then finishes them off with corn. I simply can't say enough about his products. Absolutely the most delicious beef I have ever bought anywhere...hands down. And, while it seems expensive, when I actually compare it to grocery store prices, it's not too different. But, you know, steak is pricey...so it's maybe an every few weeks indulgence. The best part of this is that this farmer knows me and he knows what I like. He makes recommendations, but he always has my tried and true New York Strip ready when I walk up. That kind of service is priceless.

Anyone else have favorite Farmer's Market finds? I'm always up for trying something new!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OPTIMIST1948 6/2/2012 7:47AM

    As I increase my gardening, I find I go to the FM less and less. Ours has a trout guy. Fresh and Smoked. Talk about indulgent: But its awesome!

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GODIVADSG 6/2/2012 6:22AM

    I wish I lived where you do! To run and eat!!! Wow! I too love farmers markets! I am trying to decide which one I should go to this morning! I don't live far from the gulf of Mexico and we have a fisherman that shows up with fresh fish! Hope your salad guy is there!! Grab and eat a bunch of greens for me today! emoticon

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MOM2HANDH 6/1/2012 10:43PM

    Yummy yummy yummy!! I'm going in search of fresh peas tomorrow. They taste so much better straight out of the shell. Mine in my tiny garden are already done :( I'm also hoping to score some raspberries! I get the spring salad mix from our CSA (and we're going to pick peas there this weekend). I need to figure out what to make with the beets we got last week!

Half the stuff in our farmer's market comes from trucks (not local) so you have to ask what is from here. Unfortunately my daughters' favorites are the flowers and homemade cookies :)

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AWOOD1973 6/1/2012 9:28PM

    We are going tomorrow. We have a lady that sells the most beautiful grape tomatoes. I can buy a large bag full for about $4.00, twice as much as I can get at the grocery store. We walked around and my oldest had all but 3 eaten...needless to say we had to go back for more!! :)
They also sell homemade beef jerk and awesome jams and jellies. Yum! My kids love going and walking around. We always leave with SOMETHING we can't live without! Lol

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MRSBUMP09 6/1/2012 8:49PM

    I am now on a mission to find a Farmer's Market in my area. I know my small town does not have one but the bigger towns next to mine should. Thanks for sharing and posting the pics.

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ILIKETOZUMBA 6/1/2012 6:22PM

    Yummy! My farmer's market is more botanicals than edibles, but I do love whenever my local grocery store has heirloom tomatoes in stock. There is just NO comparison between grocery store Romas or slicers when it comes to heirloom tomatoes - the flavor is amazing! They do have some sort of meat counter inside, but I've never really looked to see if it's local meat or not. Your description of your local meat makes me think I'll have to check into that!

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BROWNCOFIDDLER 6/1/2012 5:05PM

    Does THAT ever look GOOD!!!!!! Gorgeous photos. Thanks for sharing. Farmer's Markets are the best. emoticon emoticon

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SUNRISE14 6/1/2012 4:48PM

    emoticon THANK YOU FOR SHARING ! emoticon

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LINDAK25 6/1/2012 3:39PM

    I loved your pictures. My Farmer's Market doesn't have goat cheese or meats. However, we have bread, pies, cakes and cinnamon buns. Oh, and the man who makes copper bird feeders and bird houses. And a woman who sells beautiful pens her husband makes out of wood. While some of the produce is local, some of it is from South Carolina or Georgia. But they sometimes have things that are way out of season, which makes me think they're getting it from the grocery store. Many people just set up at our market when they have enough to sell from their gardens in their backyard. I've sold baked goods for our church (all proceeds went to the Women's Shelter) at the Farmer's Market, too.

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WINNIE1978 6/1/2012 2:03PM

    We don't really go to a farmer's market... but there is a large farm that opens up their own farm stand from about mid-June through October/November. I always LOVE it when they are open. I can leave with several bags of produce for less than $20... and it all tastes SO much better than stuff I buy at the grocery store.

I live on tomato sandwiches throughout the summer so the big beefsteak tomatoes are always my favorite find at the farm stand. emoticon

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GAYLE119 6/1/2012 1:50PM

    Now I'm hungry!! emoticon

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ON2VICTORY 6/1/2012 1:31PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Looks yummy....

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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COOP9002 6/1/2012 1:19PM

    Thanks for sharing. The beef looks especially good.

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BECKY3126 6/1/2012 12:24PM

    One of my favorite things at our local Farmers Market is local Raw Honey. It is so good and it helps with allergies, so I make my kids peanut butter and honey sandwiches and it has pretty much made their allergies almost non-existent. I also love it in a cup of coffee instead of sugar.

Don't you just love the Market though? I love to do the same as you and do a lap first and see what everyone has first (plus get a few samples of tomatoes, watermelon, etc) and then circle back around to get my purchases. Last time I walked out of there with tomatoes, Hatch green chili peppers, eggs, organic chicken, red onions and a tiny box of homemade toffee sprinkled fudge (this is still sitting on my counter because you can only handle one tiny taste at a time...it is super rich and I am not used to eating sweets like that anymore). It was a great day at the market and I am looking forward to tomorrows trip too!

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