healthy living

Monday Miles : Week 1

Week after week while doing my long runs I have had one recurring thought. I really should blog about that. Many times the blog ideas disappear by the time I get home but this one hasn’t. It just keeps floating around. Now that i’m going from being half crazy to full crazy I am going for it. Once a week I will be posting an update about my training and any tips I learn along the way. This week it is late, the holiday threw me off but this is week one of Monday Miles.

Monday Miles: Week 1 | Country Girl Gourmet

My first Full Marathon will be January 10th at the Happiest place on earth, Walt Disney World. I have read repeatedly how the Walt Disney World Marathon is one of the best marathons out there and knowing how well run the Princess races are I took it as a sign to enter when registration was on my anniversary. Happy 16th anniversary, your going to run a full marathon! To be fair my husband signed up for his first marathon too, just not WDW.

We are at 17 weeks and a few days before the marathon now and with my foot being cleared to go, it is go time. During my time off from running I was still active. During the week I was out in my garage working out with my husband, 15 year old and sometimes lil miss joined us. I would also go with my husband on his long runs during the weekend. The only difference is that I would ride my bike (ok and walk some of the steep hills but each week that was less and less). Once my foot was cleared I started walking instead of running. I wanted to test out my foot plus I was going to be sweeping a half marathon in a few weeks. 10 miles is a slow start right? I was able to do the 10 miles within the half marathon’s time limits easily with no foot problems. The following week I did 13 with my husband. I was set to go.

Sunday morning came all to early and before I knew it myself and the 3:30 pacer for Fayettevilles Race 13.1 were walking down the All American Highway. Moving right along, chit chatting and all that fun stuff.


We stayed together until around mile 7 when I picked up someone from the 10k. I helped him until around mile 8, well a bit before. I have to give this guy mad props. He was out there after having both of his hips replaced! He just wanted to see if he could do it and he did! I stayed with him until his wife came up to finish with him and her urging me to go ahead, she had him. I went ahead and saw my husband who was working as a course monitor and sped up trying to catch back up. Right about mile 9, I did my first scope on Periscope and sent a video out on Instagram.

It took about a mile but I caught back up to the back of the pack. Where I stayed for the rest of the race. I carried the American Flag and kept making sure everyone was doing ok. Outside of aches and pains and being a bit tired the ladies were doing good. One of the complaints was an achy hip from a mom of a 6 month old. She didn’t want to stop to stretch so I had her do some lunges which helped some. I also suggested she invest in a pair of good compression shorts. I explained to her the compression will help with her core which often becomes weak when having kids as well as additional stability in the hip. There are many claims that compression does this, that and the other thing but the stability is the stand out for me.

We kept on going and I kept doing what I could to encourage the back of the pack ladies. When another said they didn’t think they could do it at mile 12 I told them to stop and that they could. I explained running is in your head first. If you say you can you will. We made it up the on ramp and down to the mall and with encouragement I slowed down so she could run it in and own her half marathon finish. She worked hard for it and finished running. I came in last, like I was suppose to. It was the first time i’ve come in dead last it was very weird. I was given water and handed my medal and then I wandered my way to the Team RWB tent as most of the vendors had broken down or were in the process of doing so.   My feet were killing me, I wore the wrong shoes and I am back on the quest to find a pair of shoes for the WDW Marathon. My feet are full of hot spots,blisters and i’m pretty sure I have new black toe nails.

I took Monday and Tuesday off. Well I tried to run Tuesday but my feet were not having it. My feet have not been this bad since 2012 when I did my first half marathon. I am going to try again today but we’ll see how it goes. It may be a cross training type of day.

Are you a runner? What has your training schedule looked like for the past week?

Healthy Multigrain Chia Waffles

It’s a new year and so many people out there have made resolutions to get healthy which is awesome! Being healthy isn’t just a diet, it is how you live your life and making changes as needed for a healthier life. I am all about being healthy. Many of my friends know that I eat all sorts of weird foods like, chia seeds. Chia is awesome in my books and it isn’t just for sprinkling on top of your yogurt or smoothies when you have breakfast. How about adding some chia to your morning waffles?  Chia is wonderful in waffles and these Healthy Multigrain Chia Waffles are a great way to start your day. Just add some real maple syrup and your favorite berries, no butter needed at all.
Healthy Multigrain Chia Waffles | Country Girl Gourmet

Healthy Multigrain Chia Waffles
  • cooking spray
  • 1¾ cups milk (cow's milk or almond milk)
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cups gluten free all purpose flour
  • ½ cup gluten free rolled oats
  • ¼ cup flax seed meal
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 2 teaspoons white sugar, or more to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat a waffle iron according to manufacturer's instructions; spray the inside with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk milk, applesauce, egg, chia seeds, and vanilla extract together in a bowl; let sit until chia seeds start to thicken the mixture, about 2 minutes. Whisk flour, oats, flax seed meal, baking powder, sugar, and salt into almond milk mixture until batter is smooth.
  3. Scoop ½ cup batter into the preheated waffle iron and cook until crisp and golden, about 5 minutes per waffle. Repeat with remaining batter.

adapted from

Tips to Help Get Back on Track with your Health and Fitness Goals

It happens from time to time, you are doing well with your health and fitness goals and then something happens and you get off track. Maybe it is that New Years resolution that you make every year or maybe you were injured and need to get back on track now that you have recovered. Whatever the reason just know it happens to the best of us and you aren’t alone.  Wanting to get back on track is a huge step but it is typically not without figuring out how to get your health and fitness mojo back. Going through this myself, I have some tips to help get back on track with your health and fitness goals.

Getting Back on Track with your Health and Fitness Goals| Country Girl Gourmet

1.Make a plan

The first step  in getting back on track is to make a plan. To do this start by setting a goal and going from there. With your goal in mind find exercise that you actually like to to do and using a calendar and develop a work out plan. Decide what days you are going to exercise, what you are going to do and when.
Look at your diet and develop a meal plan. Figure out your daily calorie needs, the ratio of carbs.fats and proteins that you need. Eat healthy foods that you like, do not set yourself up for failure by forcing yourself to eat a diet of foods you hate just because they are healthy. Remember everything in moderation, treats here and there are ok and will help keep you from gorging on treats later.


2. Chart your progress

After you develop your plan, weigh yourself, take your measurements and take pictures of yourself to help keep track of your progress. Sometimes we don’t lose weight but will lose inches and seeing that change is a great motivator.
It is also helpful to log your meals to keep track of your calories and nutritional intake along with your water intake and your exercise. I use MyFitnessPal for my food intake but it tracks everything from food to exercise. I keep track of my running mileage with Garmin.  Waterlogged is another great app for tracking how much water you drink. There is an app for almost everything now and a big thing with apps is finding the one that YOU like best. Apps aren’t for everyone there is just something about writing everything out. Keep a hand written food and exercise journal, use a simple composition book or print blank month at a glance calendars and fill them out. Find a method that works for you.

3. Find your motivation

What is your motivation to be healthy? Is it for yourself? Is it for your family? Once you decide this you can look for some healthy living motivators. I like to look at Pinterest for different healthy living quotes, a good quote can help get you going. One kept me going through the Disney Princess Half Marathon. Another great motivator is paying for a race. Races are not cheap. Nothing like the thought of wasting money to get you moving. Lastly, give yourself rewards for meeting goals. The reward being something that you want (clothes, new hair, jewelry etc.). There is nothing better than working toward a goal and being rewarded.

4.Find support

Having support is a huge help when you have health and fitness goals. This support can be from your family, friends or a support group that you find online. Facebook has ton’s of groups to find the support of others. Having the support of others has been proven to aid in weight loss!
Another idea is to post “sweat checks” to your Facebook or Instagram. Sweat checks are great to help keep accountability. You never know you may find new friends to support your healthy living goals that way too!

5.Take it one day at a time

You have your goals and you are ready but here is an important thing to remember. Stuff happens! Things come up when you least expect it, bad weather, sick kiddos, and other emergencies. This doesn’t mean your goals will not happen. It just means that you need to readjust and tweak your plan. Refocus and motivate yourself to reach your daily goals, and learn from any mistakes you’ve made along the way.

6.Be Positive

Your attitude toward healthy living and fitness is key to your fitness goals. Focus on the good and stay optimistic! Positive thinking can increase your motivation and energy level. In the words of Elle Woods, ” Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands, they just don’t.”

When you start thinking negative it is easy to slip into the land of being unmotivated and depressed that can lead to skipping workouts and overeating.. so do your best to stay positive!


Don’t let falling off track get you down. Follow these steps and get back on track and in no time at all you will be making of you health and fitness goals!

You can do it!


My Best Running Advice

Back in 2007 I started running, for fun, for fitness and overall good health. I had signed my oldest son up for a race on the Navy base we lived on and at the same time I signed myself up for my first 5k. That was the moment it all began. My son went on to win his race as well as being an Army child winning the Navy kid run. Myself, yeah I didn’t win but I finished and I wasn’t dead last so that was good for me. I went on to run in more of the free 5k’s that the Navy base held, PR’ing every single time. I read all sorts of advice that of course was the best running advice to see what I needed to do to improve my running.

My Best Running Advice | Country Girl Gourmet

There are so many things that I have learned over the years but there are a few pieces of advice that I can give to anyone who is  wanting to start running.

My Best Running Advice

1. Every person is different and what may work for one person may not work for you. You have to figure out what works best for you.

The moment I figured this gem out my world of running changed for the better.

Being a runner does not depend on what you look like. Runners come in all shapes and sizes.

Being a runner does not matter how fast or slow you go or even if you walk some of the time.
 If you walk it doesn’t make you any less of a runner. There are great programs out there that incorporate walking like couch to 5k or the Galloway program. Just remember everyone starts somewhere.

The clothes you wear do not make you a runner. You need clothes that fit YOU well, not clothes that someone else says are the best. It may take trial and error but you will figure it out. Something to look out for in clothes is if it is going to make you chafe. Anti-chafing sticks like Body Glide or simple petroleum jelly can help out if you do. Another factor is dressing for the weather. What you need to wear on a cold day may not be the same as the next person. Like I hate it when my ears are cold and depending on the temp I will wear a hat or a headband. At the same time though I have gone out when it was 25 degrees in a cold weather top and a hoodie and I was too warm. That is me though you may want more or less.

Same thing goes for shoes. While I highly suggest going to a running shoe store and getting properly fitted. Every person out there has a different foot and what works well for me may not for you. There is variation in the different shoes for your type as well. Find what feels good for you not because the shoe is a certain brand. I learned my lesson the hard way. I picked a popular stability shoe  and ended up with Plantar Fasciitis. Personally, I now wear minimals and they have helped me tons but again they are not for everyone.

Hydration is important in running but how you hydrate is up to you. Some people carry water and other hydration drinks and others don’t. Some only carry if they are going a certain distance. Some think it is ridiculous to wear a fuel belt in certain races but it doesn’t matter.  You have to do what is right for your needs. I use to always carried water while I ran, it was easy. I pushed my daughter in my BOB stroller and just brought a bottle even if I was only doing a couple miles. As she grew and I no longer pushed her in a stroller I tried out hand held water bottles but they annoyed me so I started running without water and did fine until one day. It was a nice cool day and I was going out for 10 miles but I severely cramped at 9 miles and was stuck sitting on the side of the road waiting for my husband to rescue me. I now have a fuel belt that I always wear on runs that are 4-5 miles and longer. I carry a bottle of water and a bottle of Nunn or Skratch Labs, sometimes I drink it sometimes I don’t.

When it comes to gels, chews, beans and things of that nature everyone has a favorite. Gel’s bother some people and they eat raisins, gummy candy like swedish fish and even pretzels. The point is to help replenish your bodies glycogen levels and calories burned during your run. There isn’t a one fits all solution though because timing and frequency to avoid bonking depend on the individual using them and how their body processes it.

My Best Running Advice | Country Girl Gourmet

 Some people run with music while others do not. Those who run with music all have different opinions about what the best music to listen to is. I know my favorite running music differs greatly from my husbands. Just as some run with both earbuds in and others just one.

Some use a heart rate monitor and others do not. Just as some use a Garmin or other GPS tracker. That in itself is a huge debate. Who has the best running app? Is it Nike+, Runkeeper, MapmyRun, Garmin. I know with the apps I had my favorites and had friends who had completely opposite opinions. Then there are those that use the different GPS watches.

With running it is very individualized to each person’s needs. There is no clear cut answer to what is best. What is best is what works for you.

2. Running is mostly in your head.

Yes, you read that right, Running is mostly in your head. It is a battle with your brain. Some days it will be easy while others it will be hard. On those hard days doing a mile will be difficult but you just have to tell yourself that you can do it and push yourself. Just remember it will be worth it. Don’t give up, you can do it, dig deep, you are a rock star!

3. Listen to your body

You need to listen to your body and what it is trying to tell you. If it is telling you to rest then rest. If you are in pain then take a break. If the pain doesn’t get better after a couple days see your doctor. It isn’t better to take a few days off instead of making a possible injury worse and needing to take a month or longer off. Again, I learned this the hard way.

My Best Running Advice  Country Girl Gourmet

As I prepare for my second half marathon this month this running advice I can safely say has been the best things to keep in mind when I run. Running isn’t all about form. It is about running your own run and enjoying it. Running is easily the cheapest therapy out there. It allows you to go out and be alone with your thoughts. It is about being grateful for the opportunity  and the ability to run when there are those who cannot. It’s about pushing boundaries and seeing what your body can do and being amazed with yourself. Running is simply a variety of so many different amazing things.

My Best Running Advice | Country Girl Gourmet

“I run because long after my footprints fade away, maybe I will have inspired a few to reject the easy path, hit the trails, put one foot in front of the other, and come to the same conclusion I did: I run because it always takes me where I want to go.” 
―Dean Karnazes