Monday, December 15, 2014


Thanks again to Puritan's Pride for another wonderful month of the smoothie challenge! 

The little was craving "minty pie" and I created the next best thing!  Chocolate Mint Protein Smoothie!  It's Vegan! 
2 cups organic soy milk or other non dairy milk,
2tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder,
a dash of peppermint extract,
1 scoop of chocolate quinoa and oat protein,
1 handful of baby spinach
1 tbsp of chia seeds. 
Blend and enjoy!   

I want to share with you all of these great goodies to make your last chapter of 2014 a healthy one! 

This month's giveaway will include:

Puritan’s Pride All Natural All Natural Vegan Protein Chocolate with Quinoa and Oats (054825) - I use this all the time.  So neat that it is vegan and perfect for those avoiding soy! 

Lehi Valley Natural Ginger: Natural ginger is from the ginger root and is perfect as a spicy snack (which my daughter and I love to do!), place in a cup of tea, or an ingredient in cooking and baking. Dried naturally with a unique combination of sweet, spicy, moist and chewy.

Dynamic Health Pomegranate Juice Concentrate: Convenient, delicious way to obtain the beneficial compounds in pomegranate fruit.  I add a splash to seltzer water for a delicious and nutritious pom spritzer! 
Vanns Peppermint Flavor Extract: Few flavors are as distinctly tantalizing as the cool, minty vibrancy of Peppermint Extract. Use in cake, cookies, frosting and smoothies (like the one above)!
Puritan’s Pride Vitamin C Crystals: Supports antioxidant health and immune system function.* Vitamin C Crystals are specially designed for people who cannot take tablets or capsules.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

This post is sponsored by Puritan’s Pride; opinions expressed are my own.


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Recipe: Veggie Chili

Southwestern Corn and White Bean Chili
from Monica at
adapted from a 1990s recipe in “Vegetarian Times” Magazine.

Makes 6 servings.  Total cook time is about 30 minutes.

1 Tbsp. coconut oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 peppers, red and green, seeded and diced
1 medium zucchini, diced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 cups freshly roasted or frozen corn kernals (I used Whole Foods organic roasted frozen corn)
15 ounces of white kidney (cannellini) beans if canned then rinse and drain
28 ounces of crushed tomatoes (I used Tuttorosso canned)
4 Tbsp. fresh parsley
2 tsp. dried oregano
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

Heat the oil in a large saucepan.  Add the onion, peppers, zucchini and garlic.  Cook over medium heat until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally for about 8-10 minutes.  Stir in corn, crushed and stewed tomatoes, beans, and spices.  Bring to a simmer.  Cook uncovered over low heat, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in the cilantro.  Let stand for a few minutes before serving.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Five Great Gifts for the Runner in Your Life!

Here's a list of some great gifts for the runner in your life...birthday, Christmas, house warmings, to celebrate a major race, etc.  Show them just how proud of them you are! 

1.  For the Boston Qualifier in your life (or for the runner on their way to that BQ) The UnCommon Green makes pint glasses and wine glasses that display the Boston Marathon route.  What a great memory of the race or as a way to celebrate where they are headed in April!  My husband loves the one I gifted him! 

2.  A gift card to their favorite local running store.  Allows them to pick out their own gift while supporting local business and who doesn't love that?

3.  A race entry, a running club membership in their area (ours is only $40 per year for unlimited racing, what runner wouldn't love that???) 

4.  Ask them for their bib after a memorable race and create personalized DIY coasters! Or from a high resolution photo from their race, recreate their bib to then modge podge onto the coaster. 

5.  Runner's World Iron Strength or Yoga for Runners DVDs.  Help your runner stay strong and flexible in the off-season! 

Friday, November 28, 2014

Product Review: Minted Christmas Cards

I have found a great site "The Marketplace of Independent Artists" to get our cards from this year.  One huge draw for me was that each design was created by a unique artist.  The next was that I could chose the recycled paper.  And yet another was the huge time saver of free beautiful recipient addressing! 
Meet the Minted Address Assistant

Save time and let us address your card envelopes for you

  • We'll print recipient addresses on your envelopes
  • Included at no additional charge when you order holiday cards.
If you are artsy, you can also submit your own designs to them and they may choose yours to post on the website!  So cool! 
They also sell really neat art and graphic prints as well as unique fabrics! 
I can't wait to get mine in the mail.  When they come in, I will let you know my thoughts once they are in hand.  If you order, use this referral link for $25 towards your first purchase of $50 or more:

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Chocolate Protein Mint Smoothie (Vegan)

Not pictured: baby spinach and organic soy milk

The little was craving "minty pie" today and I created the next best thing!  Chocolate Mint Protein Smoothie!  It's Vegan! 
2 cups organic soy milk or other non dairy milk,
2tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder,
a dash of peppermint extract,
1 scoop of chocolate quinoa and oat protein,
1 handful of baby spinach
1 tbsp of chia seeds. 
Blend and enjoy! 

Don't let sit too long as chia seeds will gel up
Still time to win this protein powder on my blog.  #contest ends this weekend!  
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Nuun Hydration Review

I love my Marine Corps Marathon bottle!
I am a huge Nuun hydration fan!  I like the product, the company and how they support runners.  
I prefer Nuun over other sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade that can upset my stomach.  Nuun doesn't do that.  
Nuun comes in a tube with tablets that you drop into your water bottle.  It lightly fizzes up and mixes itself into your water, unlike some mixes that require a good shaking.  It is low calorie and sugar free.  So, just know that if you're participating in intense exercises lasting more than 60 to 90 minutes, you should consume carbohydrates to ensure energy levels for working muscles. But how you do that is up to you. Everyone manages energy consumption differently, whether it’s with sports bars, gel or other sources of calories and carbohydrates.
I love that Nuun creates a race specific water bottle for many of the big races!  I have the Marine Corps Marathon (pictured), Nike Women's SF, Nike Women's DC and the plan is to acquire the Boston Marathon and NYC Marathon bottles in the future!  
Nuun tasting station at the Marine Corps Marathon Expo

Thanks for the great flavors Nuun and BibRavePro
Nuun comes in many flavors and you are bound to find one you like.  Nuun Active Hydration comes in 12 flavors: Orange, Lemon Lime, Strawberry Lemonade, Fruit Punch, Kona Cola, Lemon Tea, Tri-Berry, Grape, Tropical, Citrus Fruit, Watermelon, and Lemonade.  At many expos, they have a tasting station.  My favorite is citrus. 

U Natural Hydration is newer and I have yet to try.  It comes in 4 flavors: Cucumber Mint, Goji Berry Green Tea, Tangerine Ginger, and Lemon Chai.

Nuun All Day comes in 4 flavors: Grapefruit Orange, Tangerine Lime, Blueberry Pomegranate, and Grape Raspberry.  I have only tried the Blueberry Pom and it is really good! 

Since Nuun is my preferred method of hydration, I jump for joy when it is served on course at races such as the Nike Women's Half Marathon!  :-). 

Thanks to BibRave for providing me with some Nuun to review!  I loved it anyway and so happy to have more! 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Flip Belt Review

I was sent a FlipBelt through the BibRave Pro program to test out on some of my runs.  To be honest, I never saw myself as a running belt person.  I got a hydration belt and ran with it a few times but never felt truly comfortable.  I didn't have high hopes for the FlipBelt, but I will give anything a try.  First, it claims it does not bounce....I just couldn't believe this one would be true. 

Stretching with my FlipBelt still securely in place
I took it out for a run on a cool November day and put my phone and house key in the pockets.  Sometimes I want to run with my phone so I have it for emergencies or for pictures.  I have a bra by Lululemon that I usually put my phone in, but that causes unslightly square boob photos
The belt can be worn over or under your shirt.  I chose over since my shirt was so form fitting

I was very pleasantly surprised by the FlipBelt.  When I got home my husband asked how it went and I answered, "Great!"  Now he wants one for himself, but is well aware that mine in size XS will probably not work out well for him.  The belt comes in multiple sizes so that it fits snug and doesn't bounce.  (It also comes in multiple colors too, but I chose the traditional black).    I think I will be getting one for my husband for Christmas!  At races, he likes to have his phone so that we can touch base and meet up afterwards.  He also likes to have it for photos because he is the Selfie King! 

I would recommend the FlipBelt for anyone who is looking for a way to carry their phone, key, money, metro card, etc. Things that won't fit/work in traditional pockets and they want to avoid bounce which can ruin a good run. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014


I love smoothies because of how quickly they can be pulled together with great, healthy ingredients.  I also like to balance smoothies and juices because smoothies hold more of the fiber, which is important too!  I am participating in the “Puritan’s Pride Smoothie” program and over the next few months will be sharing smoothies that I drink, recipes and great product giveaways to create your own super-food smoothies! 
October's theme was all things pumpkin!  You can check out my post here. 
This month,
November's theme is Cleansing/Belly Soother Smoothies.  The holiday season is upon us and just in time for month two of the Puritan’s Pride Superfood Smoothie challenge. It’s easy to indulge over the holidays, but, as you’ll see from these recipe ideas, it’s just as easy to take care of ourselves when we’ve overdone it. That’s why I’m excited to share November’s Superfood Smoothie recipe ideas with you. The focus is on cleansing and soothing, so we can enjoy every minute of the season ahead.

I made my smoothie using these ingredients:

Half of an avocado
1 tbsp. of chia seeds
1 large chunk of cut pineapple
2 cups of water

Blend together and enjoy.  If you like a sweeter morning juice/smoothie add an additional chunk of pineapple. 

Some other great recipe ideas:

Cleanse Smoothie
Focus ingredient:
Capsicum (cayenne pepper) is an herb that contains antioxidant vitamins A, E and C, B6 and K, making it a very healthful spice. Cayenne pepper my help to aid in digestion, which many people may need after that big holiday meal.
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 Clementines
  • 2 cups of water
  • ½ lemon, juiced
Blend all ingredients together and enjoy immediately.

Belly Soother
Focus ingredient:
Mint is an herb that needs more credit. It may help to soothe your digestive system after a few too many bites or sips. Mint also has antioxidants and key nutrients like trace amounts of vitamin A and vitamin C. All the more reason to love this refreshing herb.
  • 1 tbsp fresh mint
  • ½ cup pineapple (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Blend all ingredients together and enjoy immediately.

These recipes were developed by Brooke Alpert, M.S., R.D., C.D.N., of B Nutritious and author of The Sugar Detox, who works as a spokesperson for Puritan’s Pride.

Giveaway (over an $80 value!)

Giveaway Time! Puritan’s Pride will ship directly to you if you are the winner  I am so happy with this month's protein giveaway because the protein source of the powder is quinoa and oats!  So cool!  So if  you are avoiding soy and maybe don't like the taste of hemp, here is an alternative for you! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Interested in finding out more about Puritan's Pride? 

TWITTER: @puritanspride

What are your favorite smoothie ingredients?  Comment below! 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Manitoba Hemp Hearts Review

If you have been following my recipe posts for any length of time, you will know that I love #HempHearts!  These nutty little seeds are packed with protein and Omega 3s, and taste delicious sprinkled on just about everything, from salads to toast, to soup, to smoothies to oatmeal. 

Lunch is served!  Avocado Toast on Ezekial Bread with Hemp Hearts!

I love pumpkin soup with Hemp Hearts!  Recipe here

Manitoba Harvest is offering a great giveaway.  Don't miss this (a $50 value!) and it's so easy to enter!

Contest details!

  • Manitoba Harvest is also offering a 5 lb bag of Hemp Hearts (yes, 5 LBS) to one lucky winner. 
  • To enter to win: get creative in the kitchen, tag @manitobaharvest, #hemphearts, and #sweatpink in your Instagram and/or Twitter post and you'll be automatically entered.
  • Anyone is eligible for the contest
  • Contest deadline: November 30, 2014


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Race Report: Women's Health Run 10 Feed 10 NYC

Setting: the beautiful city of New York!
view from our window! 

Wearing my FEED foundation bracelet to breakfast
We arrived in NYC on Fri night from train from DC.  We got up early and had breakfast in Central Park and went for a run.  

Love running in Central Park
We headed over to City Sports at Rockefeller Center for packet pickup.  My bib was at the VIP table...I felt very important!

My pic made Women's Health Magazines instagram feed!

The Race:  We started at Hudson River Park at Pier 84.  I headed down there with my husband and daughter.  They had registered to run as well, with the stroller.  I went to the bathroom quickly and then headed to the Panasonic Tent to get hooked up with the video camera I would wear for the race to film footage for Panasonic and Women's Health Magazine. 
The course was an out and back along the East Highway and we would have had really great views, but it was quite foggy that day. 
The Finish Line Festival:  Tents were set up giving away all sorts of free things, yoga mats, towels, hair ties, Women's Health Magazines, etc.  Seiko was there raffling off watches and Lincoln Motor Co. was giving away yoga mats.  There was a stage with music and dancing, and later some yoga/stretching.  I stopped by the Panasonic tent to get a make up refresh...normally I don't look good after finishing a 10k!
Afterwards, I headed over to the VIP tent for some pictures and post-race refreshments. 

Action Heroes meet up post race at the VIP tent!
Then we used the afternoon to sightsee and walk the city.  I love New York!  This race really sealed the deal that I wanted to run the New York City Marathon one day!  Thanks Women's Health Magazine for this amazing opportunity.   I would definitely run this one again....great city, great cause!  I love that by running 10k, I provided 10 meals.  Hunger is a solvable problem. 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Race Recap: 39th Marine Corps Marathon


Setting: National Mall Washington, DC and Arlington, VA
Cost/Registration:  Registration is done by lottery and I was lucky enough to be selected!   

Expo: We decided to go to the expo on Thursday night to avoid the mayhem of last year's Saturday expo visit.  It was a good choice.  A breeze to get in and no lines anywhere! 

Inside, we went to a few booths, took photos, bought my favorite balega socks.  We were given a buy one get one coupon for Chipotle with our bib (dinner!).   I stopped by the Nuun booth and bought two tubes so I could get the free water bottle.  They always do a race specific water bottle at big races and they are one of my collector's items!  I love my NWM DC and NWM SF ones.  I will be getting my hubby the Boston one when he races in April! 

THE RACE:  Got up at 5:00am the next morning in order to have some cereal and coffee.  We got all our stuff in order and headed out to catch the 6:00 metro into downtown.  The metro was full of runners and spectators.  I love that.  Of course who else is crazy enough to ride the Metro that early on a Sunday morning?  My husband and daughter were spectating today.  My little is a trooper coming out to support me even though she had been sick with a fever and threw up the day before.

We arrived in Virginia and got off at our stop.  We had a long walk to get to the starting area, about a half mile.  There were long lines to enter as due to precautions every bag had to be searched.  Luckily since I had nothing on bag check since it was all with my husband, I walked right through the metal detectors with no problem.  I heard the announcement that bag check was closing and realized I wasn't giving myself a lot of extra time.  I started jogging towards the corrals.  Last year, I started too far back and this year I really wanted to find the 4:00 pacer.  I got into a corral and then realized that was with the 4:45 pacer.  I slowly squished myself through the tight crowds until I finally saw the 4:00 pacer.  Whew.  

I ate one of my humagels while I was waiting as some extra fuel.  I had bought arm warmers the night before, but it ended up being a lot warmer than expected that morning.  Last year was freezing and this year was very manageable.  I didn't even wear a throw away because it was so comfortable. 

The race was very crowded almost the entire way.   I felt so claustrophobic and kept bobbing and weaving because I often felt trapped. 

I stopped at every water station along the course due to the warmth.  I had one cup of water and one of Gatorade.  I had gotten a pace bracelet at the expo and of course forgot it on race morning!  D'oh!  My plan was to go sub 4:00, so in my head I knew I had to keep my pace at 9:00 flat.  I saw my family on the National Mall about mile 18 and I was feeling good.  
 I was doing good and was on plan for this up until about mile 19, then the wheels just started to fall off. 
The course was really beautiful....monuments, Rock Creek Park, Haines Point...

After last year's experience on Haines Point being so tough emotionally...this year I really tried to hold it together.  I stayed focused and determined through those miles and focused on the survivors (those in blue and high fived every one that was holding out their hand).

The part I didn't enjoy as much was when we headed back into VA.  I know that there is always the phrase, "Beat the Bridge" with MCM and it is mostly referring to the time cut have to cross it before it closes.  But "Beat the Bridge" has new meaning to me after this marathon as well....I think you mentally have to beat it.  It drains you, it wears you out.  There were a lot of us stopping to walk here.  This was where I was starting to hit the "wall".  I stopped to walk and grumbled pretty loudly a few times.   A guy jogged slowly past me and said "I hear ya sister!"

When I saw my husband and daughter at mile 24 I was defeated.  My hubby started taking my picture and I was waving him away.  I was embarrassed, hurting, exhausted and ready to cry at the drop of a hat.  Seeing them made me start to cry because I just wanted to quit.  

About mile 26, I saw the father of one of my former students and another former student yelling "Mrs. Dahlem!" and I perked up enough to have a little bit of extra juice to push the pace up that hill to the finish line. 

Finish Line:  I came across the line at 4:13.  I hobbled over to get my medal from my Marine.  So different from last year where I had a million times more energy!  

You then head over to an area where they get your photo in front of the Iwo Jima memorial.  I was too tired to wait in line to get the photo taken professionally and was just heading to go get food when another runner asked me to take their photo.  So I had her take mine as well.  I am glad I did.

I walked the long way down the chute to try and meet up with my husband and daughter.  Finally found them and proceeded into the beer tent.  I wasn't feeling it like I was last year.  I was just exhausted.  Michelob Ultra tasted awful this year, while last year it was amazing.  I guess it's all in how you are feeling.  I still downed mine because I really think it helps with recovery. 
So why didn't I make my 4:00 goal?  I really think that the heat (it was 70 degrees by the time I finished), unrelenting sun and the wind all added up to a slower and more painful experience.  My lips have been chapped/wind burned/sunburned all week!  I'm wearing my long sleeve in this pic not for warmth but for sun protection!  But, it's also about the work you put into it.  I had a lack luster training cycle...I was a weekend warrior getting in my long runs on the weekends, but maybe one during the week.  I would teach my spin class, but that was it.  I've had a rough year physically/emotionally teaching this year and training took a backseat.   I could/should have done more.  When others were complaining of the taper crazies, I thought to myself "You can't really taper, if you didn't really train!". 

Grade: A- Overall, I felt this was an AMAZING and well done race.  It is one of the biggest in the country and it is very inspiring to be a part of something like this.  I had no idea how much it would affect me! 
I didn't like how crowded the race was though..  I almost felt it was too many participants on small roads.  Seeded start corrals would have been really nice.  Some races do pace bracelets that you have to submit times before hand for....which would be really nice.  But I realize almost 1/3 of those running MCM, it's their very first marathon. 

At the end of the race, in the immediate exhaustion of it all I said I was breaking up with the marathon distance for a while.  Now with a week of recovery under my belt, I may re-think that.  With all the hoopla around NYC that is happening this is sucking me in again!  I know I can go sub 4:00! 

Finishing is.....

 Congrats to all who ran Sunday!