{Friday Fab 5-Cross Country, Katy Perry, Chip Free Nachos, Shalane Flanagan…}

You all probably thought I disappeared on you.  And, I guess I sort of did.  With back to school and coaching high school cross country, these 60-65 hour weeks are leaving me with little time to blog or do much else.  Add to it that my iPhone 4s is officially full on the memory front and will no longer take photos…as in ANY, and you don’ t have a good recipe for blogging.  I’ve still been catching up on the blogs I read (drastically behind, but getting there) and today’s day off from school is giving me some time to finally update this here blog.

While I don’t plan to do a Friday Fab 5 every week as I’m just too busy, I do plan to pop in here or there with updates and of course will be posting race reports or anything I feel I want to write about.

So what have I been up to lately…

{#1-Cross Country}
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At the end of August I was contacted by an organizer for David Kuhn to see if I or someone I knew would be able to help David out in reaching his goal or running 11,000 miles around the United States to raise awareness about Cystic Fibrosis, a genetic condition his granddaughter has.  Why would David need people’s help?  David is a blind.  David was in an accident caused by a drunk driver that left him without his vision.  David runs on city trails and tracks and relies on people in the communities he visits to guide him.  I thought this would be the perfect opportunity for our cross country team to learn some valuable lessons about perseverance, determination and overcoming challenges.  The team also learned about Cystic Fibrosis.

One morning before practice I picked David up at his hotel, took him to get breakfast and brought him to join our cross country team. Members of the team took turns guiding David on our 5.5. mile run.  We all ran one mile on the track and then 4.5 miles around our city trail.  The kids had to hold a rope that David held and let him know when dips, bumps or curbs were coming and when upcoming stops were near.  It was a great day for our entire team with many lessons being taken from the experience.  You can learn more about David and his journey on his blog or in this Runner’s World article.

{#2-Kacey Musgraves and Katy Perry Concert}
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Lets just say they were amazing.  I’ve always liked them both, but after hearing them live I’m a much bigger fan!

{#3-Color Run Fun}
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A full post is coming about the second Color Run I did a few weeks ago.

{#4-Shalane Flanagan and Sauvie Island}
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I saw this advertisement in the August edition of Runner’s World and it instantly brought back memories of running the Foot Traffic Flat Marathon in Oregon this summer as one of my race all 50 states. I can’t believe Shalane (notice we are on a first name basis 😉 ) often trains on the same route as the marathon. So cool to think I ran in her training grounds. Little things like this remind me of how awesome running a marathon in all 50 states is. The places it takes me and the adventures I get to have!

{#5-Healthier Chip Free Nachos}
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I made these for dinner for the husband and I a few nights ago. Football food made healthier. As I try to keep eating clean as much as possible, I’m on the lookout for new recipes all the time and ways to make foods I love healthier. This dish was perfect for that. My photos do not look near as good as the original recipe creator’s, but I made mine in a glass dish with the intention of eating mine with a fork so it was less messy. The bottom photo shows the bottom of the pan (zucchini alternating with red and yellow peppers.) Some recipe modification I made: I added green onions, onions and jalapenos, made a pound of turkey instead of 3/4 and used an entire zucchini instead of half. This was awesome and would be the perfect healthy take on tailgating food this football season.

Happy Friday!

Sarah

{Friday Fab 5-Navy Pier, Lambeau Field, Eating Clean, Back to School…}

If I had to summarize the happenings of this week it would be meal preparation. I feel like I spent most of the week cutting food, cooking food, prepping food, etc. Eating clean is harder than I thought when you’re on the go and trying to do things like paint your house and organize your closets. Exciting adult stuff happening at my house this week.

Really not so exciting, but life can’t always be awesome everyday. After a super eventful five weeks, it is time to catch up on the mundane and you know, do adult stuff like pay the bills, make appointments, get organized and back on track. Sometimes I just wish I had a secretary. Oh, and a cleaning lady and a chef. That would make life a lot easier. I’d actually have time to read a book or relax with one of the three unread, not-even-opened issues of Runner’s World. July, August, and now September are all begging to be read. I suppose all the traveling was worth the unread issues. 🙂

{#1-Navy Pier Ferris Wheel}
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Last Friday when in Chicago I finally rode the ferris wheel at Navy Pier. For some odd reason it is something I’ve always wanted to do. My husband was not so interested, but I gave him the pretty please eyes and the next thing you know he was in line to buy two tickets to ride. It is was a beautiful view of the Chicago skyline at night and fireworks being launched above Adler Planetarium.

{#2-Lambeau Field}
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After a wedding last weekend we headed to Lambeau Field. It was like a sneak peek football weekend with the Big Ten Network 10k on Saturday and Lambeau on Sunday. I can’t wait for football to sport my new Packer headband, tattoos, and can coozy I picked up from the Packer Pro Shop. Go Pack Go!

{#3-Clean Eats}
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After getting back to reality, it was time to get back on track with my eating. If you missed my two-week clean eating post earlier this week check it out. Remember I’m not a rule follower and will make adjustments to this plan whenever needed. Last night I grilled out with friends and ate a hamburger, and pasta, and tortilla chips with my pinto bean salsa. AND I ate the brownie dessert. This is life, not prison. Eat clean most of the time and enjoy the sweet goodness of processed foods once in a while. Seriously, I can’t believe how good some of the clean eats are, but at the same time my body wants processed food at least once a day. I’m trying and while I have not followed the plan perfectly at all, I’m eating better than I have in a LONG time. That is a success in my book. Perfection is overrated. If only I took my own advice more!

{#4-Back to School}
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I can’t believe I’m even putting this on my blog because I’m so not ready, but there is something I love about buying a new desk calendar and planner. It’s a blank slate to fill in with the upcoming events of the school year. I love a fresh slate each year. And organization. I picked these both up at Target this week and love the design. Having pretty school supplies is a must. End talk of the school year. I must enjoy the last weeks of summer. I must enjoy the last weeks of summer.

{#5-Upcoming Race Plans}
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I know you were expecting some big thing here, but the truth is I don’t know. I don’t even have a clue. In the past the above quote was me to a T. Right now I’m feeling a little over running, a little burnt out. I want to run, but I don’t. I want to fall in love with running and not need to be training for a race. It has been so long since I’ve run that way. I’ve got some fun 5k’s coming up with friends that I’m definitely excited about.

As for my next distance race. I’m just not sure. Funds are low after racing so much the past three months (1-10k, 1-half marathon, 3-marathons and 1-50k), and I just don’t know what I want my next goal to be. PR half marathon? PR marathon? cross off another state? With school starting and cross country coaching officially beginning in a couple of weeks I don’t want to overload myself. We will just have to see. Please tell me I’m not the only runner who has felt this way before?!

Anyone have any big races coming up? A football team you love to cheer for? Tips for race burnout?

Happy Weekend!

Sarah

{Friday Fab 5-Summertime Fun}

Good morning, peeps! Today was one of those mornings when you wake up and are in an awesome mood. Gosh I wish that happened everyday. Every single day.

This week flew by and I had planned to do another post with vacation photos, but decided to save that for another time. I don’t know about all of you, but this summer is just flying by. I’m trying to get all the sunshine I can out of it, so this week I did all the things you dream about on a cold, snowy winter day. If you haven’t had the time to savor summer, make the time. No excuses. Just do it!

{#1-Rendezvous}

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Last Friday I mentioned I was at the lake. I was with some amazing friends from college celebrating life, summer and old times. Our crazy group gets together every summer at one of the guy’s cabins and has a blast. While we see each other a few times throughout the year, this summer weekend known as Rendezvous is one everyone makes unless they’ve just had a bundle of joy.

{#2-Noah’s Ark with my sista}

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My sister was home from Texas where you cannot step outdoors without sweating a gallon and frizzing up the hair from the humidity. She came to Wisconsin to stay cool! Of course what do you do in the summer in Wisconsin…well many people visit what claims to be the largest water park in America-Noah’s Ark. Water slides galore, sunshine and fun. It was a perfect way to spend the hottest day our area has seen this summer-88.

{#3-Pettibone Beach}

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I've mentioned Pettibone before as a place to run in La Crosse, but it also has a beach frequented during the summer months. For the husband’s birthday on Wednesday we wanted to be outdoors and near water so we headed to the beach with my family.

{#4-Boating on the River}

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After some beach time we met up with friends and boated on the Mississippi River. A bunch of people water skied, while I simply relaxed on the boat. I just wasn’t feeling the water that day. It might have something to do with the gnat bite I got on my left eyelid that made my entire eye swell shut, made my eyebrow look like a Botox injection gone wrong, and gave me the puffiest under eye I’ve ever seen. It is still swollen today, but is getting better. Or maybe I was just lazy that day.

{#5-Big Ten Network 10K}
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Way back in February the husband and I registered for this race for our Valentine’s Day gift to each other. Nothing says love like running a race together. I had dreams of racing this 10k, but as the legs let me know on a run yesterday-WE ARE STILL RECOVERING. DO NOT MAKE US RUN REALLY FAST. They spoke loud and clear, so I guess I will probably listen. We are headed to Chicago as I type to run this race tomorrow morning. I love Chicago. I love the Badgers. It’s a perfect match…me and the husband that is. Then it’s off to another iconic summertime tradition in Wisconsin-summer weddings.

Anyone racing this weekend? What is your summertime fun?

Happy Weekend!

Sarah

{Friday Fab 5-At the Lake}

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This week has been a whirlwind of family, unpacking and repacking, and time with friends. I have not been using technology much as I have not had a moment to and somehow it seems better this way . In an effort to live in the moment and enjoy sweet summertime I’m not posting a Friday Fab 5 post today because I’m at the lake with some great people. I’ll be back next week with two marathon race reports (states 15 and 16) and a full Friday fab 5 post. Blogging online is great, but real-life is awesome!

Happy Weekend!

Sarah

{Friday Fab 5-Portland Edition}

Currently in the land of no wifi or cell service, this post comes to you having been written last Sunday en route to the beautiful and so-worth-no-technology Glacier National Park. Being without technology has its perks and really makes you reevaluate it’s influence in your life.

But, who am I kidding? I’ll be back to my tech dependency in a matter of hours upon returning to civilization I’m sure! Seriously, how did people live without the internet?

Last weekend we spent the weekend in Portland after I finished state number 15 by running the Foot Traffic Flat Marathon. We had lots of time to walk around and explore and eat AMAZING food. I’m not one to totally love and enjoy meals I eat, but Portland made me realize how you could. Probably a good thing since my waist band would be tighter and my pockets significantly emptier if we had those kinds of delicious eats where I live.

So what did we do and what are these great places to eat that I speak of? Here’s a look at our Saturday!
{#1-Voodoo Doughnuts}
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Voodoo has been mentioned on the Food Network and after tasting five of their flavors (Memphis Mafia, Miami Viceberry, Raspberry Romeo, Voodoo Doll and The Loop) it is easy to taste why. Their unique decor in pinks and purple (loved those colors my whole life) and their amazing flavor selection and taste make Voodoo a must stop if ever in Portland (or Denver.) We ate at the original and waited in line for 40 minutes. After we left the line was much longer so be prepared to be patient for your doughnuts. The wait is worth it though! No hexes needed!

{#2-Forest Park}

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After putting ourselves into a sugar-induced coma it was time to get moving! We headed to Forest Park where miles of trails awaited. We enjoyed the shade and scenery and were passes by many runners. Oh, how I’d love a place like this to run!

{#3-Grill Cheese Grill}

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After hiking we were hungry again. The Grill Cheese Grill was a food truck that I’d heard great things about online. Grilled cheese seems to be one of those childhood favorites that can be made more adult yummy by what you add to it. This place had awesome food. I had the jalapeño grilled cheese which had jalapeños (duh!), cream cheese and cheddar cheese. It was delicious as was their tomato soup. The husband ordered The Cheesus, which was a hamburger that had a grill cheese on the top and bottom to replace a bun with your standard fixings. We shared half our sandwiches with each other. I’m now inspired to get a lot more creative with this childhood favorite when we get home.

{#4-Salt & Straw}

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After walking around the Alberta neighborhood filled with unique and fun places to eat we worked up a hunger for a snack. When we saw Salt & Straw I knew I wanted to try it as I had read about it somewhere previously. They specialize in homemade ice cream using natural and organic local ingredients (ok, so who doesn’t in Portland, but…;). I had the strawberry with cilantro lime cheesecake and the husband had the summer cucumber and raspberry sorbet. Both were so yummy and refreshing. The best version of this iconic summer treat I’ve tasted.

{#5-The Red Tavern and Kell’s Irish Pub}

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After strolling our way through the Alberta neighborhood we headed to downtown Portland. Our visit included Pioneer Square, drinks at The Red Tavern and dinner at Kell’s Irish Pub. At The Red Tavern I had their signature drink made with vanilla vodka, black raspberries and citrus. It was perfect. After drinks we headed to dinner at a place the husband’s aunt recommended. Here I crossed two new beer flavors off my 30 beers bucket list, and we enjoyed yummy Irish fare and music. What a fun place!

If ever in the Portland area all of these places were awesome! Anyone have other Portland area food recommendation?

Happy Weekend!

Sarah

{Friday Fab 5-Go West: Part 1}

By the time you read this I will likely either be running my Fourth of July marathon or be done. Because we are on the road and pictures do a lot of talking, we are going wordless on the fab 5! Here are some trip highlights to fill you in. We live in a beautiful country. God bless America!

{#1-Badlands National Park}
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{#2-Grand Canyon of Yellowstone}

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{#3-Grand Prismatic Spring-Yellowstone}

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{#4-Hiking around Jenny Lake-Grand Tetons}

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{#5-Multnomah Falls}

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Any one else racing this 4th of July? Have a safe and fun weekend!

Sarah

{Friday Fab 5-Sobelman’s, Girls’ Weekend, Summer Salads, Go West Itinerary, Mountains Are Calling}

{#1-Sobelman’s}
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Earlier this spring the husband and I ate at AJ Bomber’s and Sobelman’s while in Milwaukee over two different weekends. We wanted to do our own little Food Wars competition. I wrote about AJ Bombers in a previous Friday Fab 5, but I realized I never mentioned we also ate at Sobelman’s several weeks ago. So here are our results: beer selection-AJ Bombers, bloody mary’s-Sobelman’s, atmosphere-can’t compare as they are totally different. Sobelman’s feels like your grandpa’s fun and friendly bar that serves awesome bloody mary’s while AJ Bombers has an urban and modern feel with great local beers. Now for the important part-the food. While AJ Bombers offers organic grass-fed burgers (yum!), Sobelman’s burgers were hand-down the best burgers we have eaten. Both were great places to eat and I encourage you to do your own version of the Food War’s whenever you have a chance.

{#2-Girls’ Weekend}

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Last weekend the ladies in my husband’s family got together for a weekend of fun. Most of the guys were gone on a fishing trip. We enjoyed good food, drinks and fun. One of our stops was the River Walk Pub in Wisconsin Dells. It was a beautiful place with good food, too. Any girl traditions you have in your family?

{#3-Summer Salads}
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Lately I’m obsessed with salads-specifically summery salads with fruit. The left was one I made at home, the middle from a local restaurant, Sprecher’s, and the last is the Strawberry Poppyseed Salad from Panera. Anyone have any must try salad recommendations?

{#4-Go West Itinerary}
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Today we go west! Our trip will include the Badlands, Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Portland, Oregon (run marathon-Foot Traffic Flat), Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Glacier National Park, Missoula, Montana (run marathon-Missoula Marathon), and Theodore Roosevelt National Park. I will be posting tons of photos on Instagram so follow me @sneaksandstilettos (http://instagram.com/sneaksandstilettos) to see some beautiful images of the US of A, two more states in my 50 in 50 journey and other road trip fun the husband and I embark on! Stay tuned for a post with tips about staying active while on vacation sometime next week!

{#5-The mountains are calling!}
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Packing for a vacation that involves camping, backpacking in remote areas, running marathons, and wanting to dress cute on weekends is time intensive. Then do it alone. The husband has been on a fishing trip in Canada since last Monday and he gets back just in time for us to leave again. I can hear the mountains calling. I’m ready for a break!

Happy Weekend!

Sarah