FitFeat has officially moved to the new site!

20 10 2009

Hi there!

Thanks for coming by the blog! FitFeat has moved to a self-hosted location:

www.fitfeat.com

Please come on by and check it out! 

I’m hosting a giveaway contest through Oct. 22, 2009 8:00 PM MST — be sure to come by to enter, and update your bookmarks, readers, blogrolls with the new site link!

— Shari B. =)





FitFeat is MOVING Tonight! And a GIVEAWAY!

16 10 2009

Hi everyone!  The FitFeat blog is officially moving to self-hosted… wahooo!  Let me just say that I am SO ready for a bottle glass of wine.  I’ve been sitting at this PC for too long the last few days.  Things on the new site aren’t EXACT (yet) to the appearance of this one, but I’m pretty close.  🙂 

I’ve exported everything prior to this post and imported it all up to the new blog location.  So I’ll be “offline” for a day or so until the changes that have been made to the nameservers propogate.   The “orders” have been made – now it’s just a matter of waiting for everything to happen on the other end.

Once everything has switched over you can find me at:

http://fitfeat.com/blog

BLOGROLLS:  If you have me in your blogroll (thank you!) please update with the new link. 

EMAIL SUBCRIPTIONS: If you signed up for the email subscription service, I should be able to change that manually on my end. 

RSS FEEDS:  if you had subscribed via the RSS feed, you will need to re-subscribe from the new site when it’s up.  I’d miss you if you don’t resubscribe 🙂 

READERS (i.e. Google Reader) and BOOKMARKS:  Again, you’ll need to update the link to the new location. 

My apologies for the inconvenience! 

My FitFeat email will also be in limbo until the nameservers switch over, so if you email me at shari@fitfeat.com and I don’t email you back quickly, chances are it’s hung up in the server change. 

[Those of you familiar w/ the WordPress redirect:  I had hoped to do a redirect via WordPress, but because I purchased the domain name within the past 60 days, I was unable to transfer management of the domain name to them for the upgrade.  😦 Hence all the changing.] 

As incentive (and THANKS) to keep you coming to FitFeat after the move, I’ll be hosting a giveaway from the new site next week!  Be sure to come by for the details!

***

Have a GREAT Friday night and an even better Saturday!  I’m so thankful to have each and every one of you reading the blog! 

Now, onto that glass of wine…  🙂

— Shari B.  =)





The Great Debate: Pre-Workout Fuel

16 10 2009

TGIF! TGIF!

Good morning FitFeat friends!  Are you so excited that the weekend is upon us once more?  I am ESPECIALLY excited because this weekend they are forecasting some 70+ degree weather and sunshine!  More chances for me to get some Vitamin D action!  😉

What a week it has been.  Have you noticed what’s been missing this week?  WOGGING!  My poor dogs.  They haven’t been out on a walk since Monday evening.  I’m a bad puppy-mommy this week!  I’ve had daily “social-cizing” plans and the rest of the time I’ve been glued to my PC in preparation for the upcoming blog move. 

Maybe yet today I’ll be able to get them out.   

Check out my new breakfast creation:

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Now I know what you’re thinking:  “OMG what IS that?  It looks disgusting!”  But let me tell you this was one delicious little pre-workout fuel!  It is toasted Ezekial smeared with coconut oil (in lieu of vegan butter) and then smeared again with a MEDJOOL DATE!  Mmmm coconutty-datey sweetness!  Brendan Brazier (professional Ironman triathlete) says that coconut oil and dates are great exercise fuel:  the coconut oil has MCTs (medium chain triglycerides) that are more easily converted to energy by the body, not to mention easily-digested simple carbs in the form of the date. 

I often will eat half of a Coconut Cream Pie Larabar for pre-running fuel thanks to Brendan’s info.  That particular Larabar contains dates, coconut and coconut oil. 

I met up with my friend (and fellow personal trainer) at The Bluffs yesterday morning for a hilly run.  Wendy is a serious running pro, let me tell you.  She’s a multi-time marathoner (including the BOSTON which one must qualify to enter).  The only reason I’m able to run with her currently is because she is nursing a foot injury.  Notice I’m not saying “keep up with her currently” — because she still could have TOTALLY left me in the dust yesterday, I know it.  🙂 

We got in 3.62 miles of hills and dales.  It was a BEAUTY of a morning!  And I felt fantastic afterward.  Wendy, thanks for a great time – I’m looking forward to going again soon!

After that I hit up Starbucks to catch up with another friend and her adorable son, where I had a grande SOY STEAMER.  (Essentially that means I have Starbucks heat me up a nice cup of soy milk, with no coffee or flavoring, and then pay them probably 3 times what a whole container of soy milk would cost!)  Ahhh gotta love th SBUX.  (Thank you Magen for treating — that was very sweet of you!)

Riley never gets any photo love since Rascal is the ham of the family, so I had to get her in the shot.  See what she’s saying with her eyes?  It’s “why haven’t you walked me today, ya big jerk!”  🙂

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Lunchtime meant it was time for me to get my major veggie fix.  I still don’t think photos do this salad bowl justice.  It is HUGE.  I measured yesterday and it is 11″ in diameter.  🙂  This one was chock full of spinach, heirloom tomatoes, yellow pepper, dulse, avocado, zucchini ribbons, kalamata olives, nutritional yeast, and pepper.  Dressed with extra virgin olive oil.  I ate every last bite and had a few baked potato chips on the side. 

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A little Pecan Pie snack in the afternoon: 

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And leftover “Lazy Girl Dinner” from the other night whenI had Amy’s Organic Southwestern Vegetable soup.  I had it in a mug with a  little raw goat cheddar and Mary’s Gone Crackers on the side.  Right back to the PC I went…  MSP had his last softball game of the season, so I was right back to the PC to get some more blog work done.

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I did need an evening snack since my soup didn’t keep me full very long, so I made a bag of homemade microwave popcorn (1/4 cup of plain popcorn kernels in a brown lunch bag, fold up the top, microwave for up to two-and-a-half minutes or until the popping sounds are far apart).  No fake butter flavor, no crazy chemicals, no fumes that allegedly cause lung cancer.  Sprinkle with some sea salt and/or nutritional yeast, and munch away!  

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I fell asleep while watching “The Office”.  Lame.  All the social activity of the day combined with a whole lot of sitting at the computer made Shari very sleepy…

***

So for today’s discussion, I’d love to hear how you fuel your workouts
Are you an “empty stomach exerciser” or a “fully fueled exerciser“? 

I definitely vary, depending on the situation.  For running, ideally I get it done first thing in the morning after just a cup of coffee (and maybe a bite or two of Larabar at the most).  I feel lighter on my feet and don’t experience ‘side stitches’ when I don’t have food in the system. 

But sometimes when I meet up with running buddies, it’s usually a little later in the day and I don’t like to go that long without food.  So I’ll try to eat something about 90 minutes prior to the outing (usually anything sooner and I get severe side cramps during the run).  Yesterday’s toast with the coconut oil and date worked perfectly.  I had some simple carbs, some complex carbs and the coconut oil.  The date gave me some quick energy and the sprouted grain toast gave me some sustained energy.  It was plenty for my run and held me over for about 3 hours until it was time for SBUX. 

Other forms of exercise (like my weight training and hiking) don’t cause me to have to overthink the food situation as much.  Weight training is usually first thing on an empty stomach.  For hiking I eat about 90 minutes for hitting the trail, then bring a Larabar in case I need it on the trail.

There are a lot of schools of thought as to whether you should work out on an empty stomach vs. being ‘properly’ fueled.  Some say that if you exercise on an empty stomach first thing in the morning, you’ll burn more fat (still burning the same number of calories, but because your glycogen stores will be lower first thing in the a.m. you potentially dig into fat stores sooner.)  On the other hand, there are those that say if you exercise without properly fueling for it, you will be causing a bit of catabolism of the precious muscle tissue we all work so hard to keep.

My opinion is this is highly individualized from one person to the next.   Feeling crampy or nauseous during a workout from a belly full of food isn’t something that will keep you coming back for more.  But feeling lightheaded or dizzy from not eating enough and hence lacking energy isn’t good either.   Base it off of how long or how intense the workout will be.  Common sense applies here.  Listen to your body and take note of how you feel so that next time you can make the right ‘tweaks’ to feel FANTASTIC during your workouts. 

Isn’t that really what it’s all about anyway?  🙂  I’d rather feel great during my workouts (which means I’ll be more inclined to do it again tomorrow, and the day after that, etc.) than be too focused on what percentage of the calories burned are from fat.  (Been there, done that…!)   Overall if you are moving your body regularly and eating nutritious foods, you’ll get where you want to go.

Let us know which side of the fence you’re on — drop a comment!

Alrighty friends, I’ve got a LOT on the plate today so I’m gonna get cracking!  Have a FAB FRIDAY! 

If all goes as planned today I may be back later on with the last notice before the blog moves.  If not, you’ll know I hit an speed bump… 😉  

See ya next time! 

— Shari B. =)





Too Many Avocados, Too Little Time

15 10 2009

Hello again blog buds! 

As promised I’m back with the continuation of Wednesday’s recap since I had to jet out so fast earlier this morning to make it to my running appointment!

After hiking yesterday with my good friend (thanks Keri!!) I snacked on a Chocolate Coconut Chew Larabar in the car.  Mmm it’s so like a coconut brownie, love this one!

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By the time I got back to my house it was close to 1:00 – I had a late lunch that ended up being lunch and afternoon snack.  The beauties were staring at me from the counter:

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So I figured now that they’re ripe I better get busy eating them!  I decided on lettuce wraps filled with avocado slices, yellow pepper, tomato and slivers of raw goat cheddar.  Sprinkle on some coarse-ground pepper and lunch was ready!  (Quite tasty AND filling…)

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I spent a little time catching up on some of my favorite blogs and it seemed chickpeas were a strong theme around the blogosphere!  I thought for sure I’d make some thing relating to hummus or falafal after seeing all the gorgeous photos of various chickpea dishes.  But when dinnertime actually rolled around, all I wanted was some miso soup and sushi.  I chose the Bungee roll which is a cucumber/avocado roll with baked spicy salmon on top.   I miss having sushi on a regular basis!  I was a little worried about eating all the rice with the salmon (from an upset stomach standpoint) but all was well! 

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After dinner we got decided to be spontaneous and use up some movie passes so we ran out to the theater.  Often I will bring my own snack in my purse with me, and maybe a bottle of water.  On this particular night, I was feeling the movie candy, so I decided to get some Welch’s Fruit Snacks.  Hey, if anything, I got a HINT of juice in my candy, since I didn’t have a green smoothie during the day!  😉 

So now that I still have 4 avocados to use up, I’d love to hear of your favorite avocado recipes!  I’m considering using one to make a “Choco-mole” from Gena at Choosing Raw.  But still have  A LOT of avocado to use up.  Outside of GUACAMOLE, what is your favorite way to eat an avocado? 

Alright my friends, off to continue working on my huge To-Do List!  (Which means I haven’t made it far enough into my Tony Robbins “The Time of Your Life” audio series yet, because apparently I will soon be taught how NOT to live and die by the dastardly To-Do list.)

I hope you are all enjoying your Thursday!  Looking forward to hearing your avocado uses!

See you tomorrow!

— Shari B. =)





Jekyll and Hyde Weather

15 10 2009

It’s Friday-eve!  This week has absolutely FLOWN by!  I recall last week writing how excited I was that it was Friday and that really feels like it was, oh, 18 hours ago!

Wednesday started out with a pretty ho-hum leg workout.  I knew I’d be hiking (social-cizing) a few hours after the leg workout so I just wasn’t feeling like blasting my legs and then suffering through the hike. 

Weight Training (Legs, Light Shoulders):

  • TM Warmup 5 minutes
  • Ball Wall Squats 15 close feet, 15 middle feet, 15 wide feet
  • ValSlide Rear Lunge 3 sets of 15 reps each leg
  • Side Raise (shoulders) 4 sets of 15, 15, 10, 9
  • Explosive Lunges 2 sets of 20 reps
  • Overhead Shoulder Press 2 sets of 10 reps
  • Quick Bench Pushups 2 sets of 10 reps

Rather than lazy I’ll call it “efficient”.  🙂

Then it was time to fuel up for my hike.  I was in need of a 2nd cup of coffee for this one (have you guys tried the new Starbuck VIA instant coffee?  It’s fabulous!  While I’m a big fan of Starbucks lattes, I’m not a fan of their brewed java in-store.  But this VIA is really good!  It’ll be perfect for travelling and camping!)

With said VIA, I had two pieces of toasted Ezekial with raw almond butter and raw honey, with a side of 1/2 medjool date.  Dates are becoming my new favorite snack I think… oh so sweet! 

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On the way to hiking I was bumming because I didn’t think I’d be able to see any pretty scenery, thanks to all this fog!

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But the minute we crossed over the first ridge of the mountains, look at the blue sky that welcomed us!  Mister Hyde Weather please meet Jekyll!  Wahooo, sunshine and warmth!

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There were a FEW aspen leaves left on the trees… most had already fallen.

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I’m a happy girl when I’m hiking!

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We planned on 6+ miles, but found that the online info of the trails was not as accurate as our GPS … according to our GPS we did 4.25 miles.  Regardless of the mileage, we had a BEAUTIFUL time!  I’m trying to savor any of these last few days that have any bit of warmth associated with them.  This weekend we are supposed to see 70 degrees again so I’m seriously doing the happy dance!

Speaking of mileage, I have to scoot out the door to meet up with a running buddy, so I’ll be back later to wrap up the recap of yesterday’s eats!

In the meantime, here’s a quick shot of my sprouting experiment.  I think I see a couple of baby sprouts!!! 

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Have a great Thursday morning and I’ll see you all a bit later!

— Shari B. =)





To Sprout or Not To Sprout?

14 10 2009

Good morning blogosphere! 

Thank you so much to those who shared their own sprouting experiences – I appreciate hearing from all of you! 

Upon reading some of the comments as well as websites discussing the toxins and bacteria potentially in sprouts, I will confess I’m torn. On one hand I hear experts touting sprouts as being the king of nutrients and digestability.  Then at the other end of the spectrum you have experts telling you to pretty much avoid them (especially alfalfa).  And I’ve been eating alfalfa sprouts EVERY day for months now, in smoothies, sandwiches, wraps. 

I feel at this point I’ll continue to eat sprouts in moderation.  I think, at least for me personally, the benefits outweigh the risks.  That may change as I continue to read up on the topic.

Therefore, my sprouting (ad)venture has commenced… but I think this first attempt isn’t going to go all that well.  We’ll see.  Not that I’m trying to send negative vibes out into the universe or anything 😉 I am starting with millet because that is what I happened to have on hand.  Reading into the instructions of sprouting millet, I learned that tray-style works better for this particular grain using 100% cotton cloth above and below it, as I’ve done here.

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The issue I think I will run into is the rinsing and draining.  Once you get little shoots they say to be very careful because they can break easily.  Not sure how I’m going to manage rinsing and draining from this pie plate without moving the little buggers around!  I also read that some of the millet might ferment rather than sprout.  Plus I’m not even sure if what I have is hulled or unhulled millet.  And I’m quickly realizing in this dry climate that my cloth dries out CRAZY-FAST so I think I need something thicker like a washcloth. (Overthink things much, Shari??)  🙂

Time will tell!

What I DO know is that the sprouts I PURCHASE cost me about $1.99… so if I spend too much time on this experiment, I’ll be sticking with store-bought!  🙂

On the subject of millet, I did cook up a big batch of it to keep in the fridge.  So for breakfast yesterday I had a bowl of warm millet with almond milk, some raw honey and raisins.  It was a nice change from oatmeal.

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It made for a perfect post-run meal after a chilly and VERY dark outdoor run.  MSP and I went out for three miles at about 6:20 and it was still pitch black out when we left.  I can be wide awake when I leave the house and then get out into that darkness and it’s like my body floods my system with melatonin because I get really sleepy again until the sun comes up.  Thank goodness for electricity or I’d be sleeping 16 hours a day during winters!

Midmorning I had half of a Cashew Cookie Larabar.  

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I’ve had a small box of Sunshine Falafel ‘burgers’ in my freezer waiting for me to try.  Since I bought a huge tub of roasted red pepper hummus, I decided I’d break out the falafel burger for lunch before the hummus is gone!  (It doesn’t last long in this house!)  I used half of a sandwich thin as the base, with a schmear of hummus topped by a slice of heirloom tomato.   The Sunshine burger acted as the bun lid.  For some reason this picture makes it look like an Egg McMuffin, doesn’t it? 

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It was definitely tasty.  A little drier than I imagined but that worked perfectly for a TOPLESS sandwich!  🙂

And of course, my large salad to go with my meal!

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I spent most of Tuesday glued to the computer, working on and reading about taking my blog self-hosted this weekend.  I needed a snack that would allow me to still type, so just a quick handful of Mary’s Gone Crackers and the rest of the morning’s Larabar.

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I made a hamburger potato casserole for MSP’s dinner which did require a little kitchen time, so when it came time to decide what to make for moi, I wasn’t feeling in the mood to cook anything.  Lazy Girl Dinner would have to suffice.  A can of Amy’s Organic soup.  Folks, let me tell you that these soups are pretty much the reason I have yet to actively seek out recipes for soup.  Amy make’s a kick-a$$ soup!!  Look at how chunky this soup is!  This one was Southwest Vegetable.  Even the little pieces of corn had grill markings on them.  🙂 I will definitely be stocking up on cans of this particular ‘flavor’.  I almost ate both servings, but decided to save some for another meal.  On the side was a piece of toasted Ezekial, with Earth Balance vegan butter and a sprinkle of garlic salt.

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Sometimes cooking is just overrated when you can heat up an insanely quick dinner like this.  🙂

And last, my evening dessert:  in concept I thought this would be such a cute photo.  It SO did not turn out that way.  In my mind I was thinking “banana sushi rolls” with almond butter as my ‘wasabi’.  It didn’t plate up that well though and I got quite a laugh out of it.  For any South Park fans out there, I’ll just say that this picture brought to mind Mr. Hanky and leave it at that!

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It did TASTE great though, with cinnamon, raw honey drizzle and the almond butter.  😉

If you are in the mood for a giveaway, hop on over to The Fitnessista’s blog where you can enter to win free VEGA Sport items.  She will announce the winner on Thursday morning so you have all day today to get your entries in.  You know I love my Vega products, so I’ve used up all of my three ways to enter that contest! 

OK, blog buds I have plenty more to say today but feel like I’ve borrowed enough of your time as it is so I’ll save it for another post!  I’m heading out to get my HIKE ON. 

****

Just another reminder for those who may not get to read daily:  FitFeat will be going self-hosted over this coming weekend (provided all goes well when it comes time to ‘flip the switch’!)  If everything goes as planned you should be able to find me at the same address I can be found at now which is www.fitfeat.com.  Currently that redirects you to this wordpress dot com blog location.  Over the weekend it should redirect you to the new location.  If you have any trouble finding the blog or notice something that doesn’t seem right, please email me at shari@fitfeat.com.

— Shari B. =)





Save Our Soles!

13 10 2009
Holy moly FitFeat Friends… there was an explosion of activity on the blog yesterday!  Wow!  A record number of hits to the FitFeat site.  Whatever you guys are doing to spread the word, THANK YOU!  And please keep it up – you’re AWESOME!

So I thought I’d take some time today to talk about another one of my favorite “tools” – but this one is not related to the kitchen.  It’s for our feet. 

Back when I was running half-marathons more often and putting a lot of miles on my feet, I was getting blisters left and right. 

Two friends / running buddies each recommended that I try a particular brand of sock called the Wrightsock Coolmesh.   What’s special about these socks is that they are made of two thin layers.  Instead of your sock and foot rubbing together, the two layers of material rub together and the friction stays within the layers as opposed to on your skin.  

I wasn't kidding when I said I have SMALL FEET...!

I wasn't kidding when I said I have SMALL FEET...!

These socks were lifesavers (well, OK that might be an overstatment 🙂 at the very least they were sole-savers!)  They are a small investment early on, but worth every penny.  I now own about 8 pair and I wear them every day:  running, hiking, walking.  Anytime my sneakers go on, so do these socks.

If you’re a runner, walker, hiker or just someone who is prone to blistered feet, you should look into trying out these socks.

I am grateful to have learned about these socks at a time when I really needed them (thanks Scott!  thanks Lori!) and wanted to pay it forward, so to speak.

In light of the recent FTC ruling about product reviews and blogs, I thought I’d make a note for the record that all of the products I have reviewed and/or recommended to date on this blog are offered up solely because I use and like the products, not because I am being paid to do so or offered any sort of kickback.

On to Monday’s eats:

After the nice Back/Trap workout I detailed in yesterday’s post, I wanted a quick influx of carbs.  So I opted for a bowl of mango-licious.  This one should have been given over to the green smoothie gods though, because it wasn’t as ripe as it should have been.  That’s what I get for being impatient and dying to eat my yummy mango taunting me from the fruit basket on my counter!
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Shortly thereafter it was time for my real breakfast so I had a bowl of OATSMILE:

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Lunch was yet another leftover serving of Veggie Enchilasagna with a side of spanish rice.  There’s one more sliver of this still in the fridge, but I’m pretty sure at this point that I’ve had my FILL of this particular food for awhile.

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I also had a side salad with lunch (spinach, tomato, dulse,  pepitas, hemp oil, balsamic vinegar, nutritional yeast):

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Followed by a little dessert!  Endangered Species brand 72% dark chocolate… mmmm chocolate!

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Afternoon snack time came up FAST!  I was busy on blog hosting study… I decided to forego the standard Larabar for some hummus, Wasa, raw goat cheddar and baby carrots.  Tasty and fiber-rich!

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When MSP got home, we still had some daylight and it wasn’t completely freezing outside, so we decided to take the dogs out for their wog:  a quick 2-miler to work up a little appetite before dinner: another set of leftovers that I tried to make into something different.  I had some of Friday night’s “Warm Asian Thai-Fry” left, so I warmed it up, then wrapped it into red chard leaves.  The ‘dipping sauce’ is just a generic version of Annie’s “Gingerly Vinaigrette” from a bottle. 

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It wasn’t bad at all for a meal that only took about 90 seconds to build!  But I was still a little hungry after so I had a few Mary’s Gone Crackers with some slivers of the raw goat cheddar

OK, friends, I’m off to get Tuesday started!  Have a fantastic Tuesday!  If you’re located in the Colorado are, KEEP WARM!  If you’re located someplace outside of Colorado that is warm, please send some heat our direction!

For today’s discussion, do you have any tips/tricks/tools that have helped any of your outdoor activities, in the way that the Wrightsocks have helped with my blisters?  You FitFeat readers are very FIT-SAVVY, and have lots of great info to share!  Thanks for doing so and keep it coming!  We are ALL learning and benefiting from each other!

See you tomorrow!

— Shari B. =)