Saturday, July 10, 2010

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Flat Day

No hills here. Just the flat apartment floor I spent the morning/afternoon puttering around. I slept GREAT and stumbled out of bed to coffee and Kashi Crisp.

cereal 001 

The cereal was tasty, but for some reason, breakfast, although one of my favorite meals, can be hard to eat some days. Chewing and swallowing seems to become a job of its own.

Lunch was simple and tasty. It feels great to be getting some fiber in my day—the last couple days were lacking.

whole wheat pasta + peas + 2 tsp olive oil + salt + pepper + 2 tbsp parmesan cheese

cereal 002 

Trying to motivate and go to the Farmer’s Market. Although it is only half a mile away, I can’t guarantee that I’m going to make it happen. Sweatpants may win.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Uphill Battle

This morning, while planning the day, Raj suggested a 30 mile bike ride.

Out loud, I said “ Isn’t your tail bone bothering you? Won’t that be uncomfortable?”

In my mind, I said “30 miles? Hell no, I want to wear a dress today, look cute and relax.” Three hours later, I longed for the bike ride. Read more below. Hardest workout of my life!

Breakfast never really happened – we went to Zakey around noon for falafels, hummus and pita:) It was tasty, the decor was really cheesy, but the food was good and fast.

the climb 004 the climb 002the climb 003 After picking up iced coffee (note how fresh and clean I look) and checking out fun coffee mugs, we hopped in the car and drove about 30 miles west to Sleeping Bear Dunes. the climb 006the climb 005 

And then….we drove up to Lake Michigan Overlook, 450 feet above Lake Michigan—the views were spectacular and breathtaking. Immediately, we noticed the people running (yes running!) down the dunes and frolicking in the gorgeous water below.

While wearing a dress and carrying a camera, I thought, what the hell. We are in decent shape. As we passed SO MANY people crawling, on hands and knees, back up the dunes, I thought that they must be exaggerating and felt grateful for my regular exercise routine.

Um, yeah. About that. Ten feet up the climb, I wanted to sink into the sand and sit there forever. OK, I did sink into the sand, but luckily for only about five minutes. We would literally take thirty steps up the dunes  glacial hill and then rest. My heart was pounding, my dress was drenched and my sweat blurred my vision. An hour and some change later, we conquered the monster.

Start time: 2:39 pm

End time: 3:33 pm

Some little girl told me she did it in 26 minutes. Silly youth.

I want to go on a bike ride.

the climb 008

the climb 034 Turn around you crazy person! I felt bad for that guy on my left. Then I learned.the climb 031the climb 039the climb 045the climb 049the climb 047the climb 051

  The aftermath.

the climb 053 NOTE THE FLYING SHOE AND SOCK. Raj’s. He left it with me so he could trot ahead and take a picture of me on the tail end of our journey. I was none too happy and threw it at him. Take that.

the climb 059the climb 065 On a serious note, it felt great to climb this beast. It felt like quite an accomplishment and there was no way to quit once we started:)

We hit the road and stopped at the first place we saw, Gemma’s. We shared a BLT, fries and a HUGE lemonade.

the climb 070the climb 069 Four hours later, a pit stop at a cherry stand (haha), McDonalds and No Thai!, we are back in Ann Arbor and I am in desperate need of a shower!the climb 071the climb 072

Thursday in Traverse City

Raj and I walked downtown, passed a team race –people dressed up themselves and a bed that they had to carry down the street!

Saw our future.

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We had treats at Morsels: velvet and satin, charlie brownie, quarter cup cake and tall on taste.

beach 004 beach 005

Stopped by Cherry Republic and sampled jams, peanut butter, BBQ sauce (yummy!) and chocolate covered cherries.

beach 006 beach 007 beach 008 beach 009 beach 010 beach 011

We ate a leisurely dinner at Poppycocks, a restaurant that uses local ingredients to shape their menu. The service was super slow, but the sweet potato chips and guacamole made it worth the wait. The soups were OK, the main dishes were pretty good, but I would have been happy with multiple orders of the chips:)

Descriptions taken from their site:

beach 012 Swiss chard and tomato soup, vegan Greek soup and black bean tortilla soup.beach 013

Sweet Potato Chips with Guacamole: Fire roasted tomatillo guacamole and cumin scented sweet potato chips drizzled with five pepper oil.

beach 014

Hangar Martini Steak: Hanger steak marinated with thyme infused Hangar 1 Vodka. Served with a gorgonzola-olive tapanade and local arugala

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Drunken Chicken: Red wine marinated chicken breast,sautéed mushrooms, basil risotto and crumbled chevré with a balsamic drizzle

beach 016 beach 017

And then:

People watched.

beach 031 beach 032

  Relaxed.

beach 024 beach 046

Bingo.Two games, two losses.

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Got spooked out by vines.

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Walked back to the hotel.

beach 053 beach 054 beach 055

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Traverse City

A few years ago, Jamie and I ran a 10k. I remember passing a woman wearing a shirt that said “why run slowly when you can walk fast?” OK - maybe she passed me.

I am a slow poke when it comes to running. I get tired, I feel like I am running fast, but these feet barely make contact with air. But, that is OK. For a long time, I was mortified by my, um, patience with my pace, but who really cares? As long as I am moving, all is well. After running 3 miles in 34:36 at the gym, Raj and I shared Panera’s new Cuban chicken sandwich.
traverse 001
I am not a big meat eater and definitely can’t handle more than one kind of animal in my mouth (unless it is bacon, of course). This sandwich contained many slices of ham that were not advertised — how should I know the Chicken Cuban has ham? —after removing them, it was OK, but nothing special. The sweet pickles were good, but not enough to make me go back for more.

The frozen raspberry lemonade, however, was amazing! Loved it.
traverse 002
A few hours into the drive, we pulled over and ate at Subway. Typically, I get their veggie patty, but not all Midwest locations have them. Guess it being a big meat eating area and all. I had a veggie sandwich, topped with pepper jack cheese and honey mustard. Yummy:)
traverse 003
We checked into our hotel and are resting before heading out and exploring. Lots of great events going on, because it is the middle of the National Cherry Festival!

Cherry Bound

Woke up this morning, finished packing, drank LOTS of coffee +
  • banana
  • 1 cup soy milk
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1 scoop 365 chocolate protein powder
  • raspberries
  • swirl of honey
book 002
Off to the gym and then hitting the road for a couple of hours. Some treats for the road:
book 001 I have about 100 pages left in The Ruins  and the book has left me speechless. Mostly because there is nothing good that I want to say about it. I lovedlovedloved A Simple Plan and expected equally good things from this book.

Not so much. Basic gist: young travelers go looking for a lost brother, get stuck on a hill, can’t leave hill or Mayans will shoot them. Vines, yes vines, attack them on the hill, eat their body parts, talk to them, laugh at them, etc. Vines with pretty red flowers on them.

Modern day little shop of horrors? Smith writes so well, so this is a bummer!

Have a great day and watch out for those small plants, garden vegetables and any other vegetation that may reach out and grab you.

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