Recent eats and my first “long” run

Happy Memorial Day!  I hope that you are enjoying a long weekend filled with fun and lots of good food!  Before we get to my first “long” run, I want to share some delicious eats that I’ve recently enjoyed.  First, some fresh crabcakes with roasted squash and zucchini and a baked sweet potato.  This is a very typical meal for us during the week – either chicken, fish, or some type of seafood paired with roasted veggies.  Daniel and I will usually split a sweet potato with a meal like this (even though I could easily put away a whole one on my own).


Then there’s this little beauty.  I like to call this one the banana coconut cake protein smoothie.  You could easily adjust the ingredients to suit your taste, but trust me, it’s good as is!



Banana Coconut Cake Protein Smoothie

*This recipe yields about 24 ounces, so I poured 8 ounces into a small mason jar and saved it for the next day. 

1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder (I use Optimum Nutrition Performance Whey Vanille Shake)

1 frozen banana

pinch xanthan gum (this makes it so thick and creamy)


1/2 tsp vanilla extract (I use Mexican vanilla)

1/2 tsp coconut extract

1/4 cup low fat unsweetened finely shredded coconut (optional)

2-3 handfuls fresh spinach

1/4 cup low fat cottage cheese (it may have been closer to 1/2 cup, I wasn’t using measuring cups)

1 cup unsweetened almond coconut milk

3-4 ice cubes

Blend all ingredients and enjoy!  This baby was perfect after a hot and sweaty workout!

Now, onto that run I’ve been talking about.  As I’ve said before, I am brand spankin’ new to the world of running.  Last week, I ran about two miles on Tuesday and again on Thursday.  Saturday morning, I got up at 6 to get ready for my first “long” run in my half marathon training program.  I fixed a light breakfast consisting of half a toasted sandwich thin topped with one teaspoon of peanut butter and a little homemade strawberry jam.  I pulled on my shorts and a loose tank and headed out the door about 6:35.  After a 5 minute warmup, I took off on my run.  (I had already mapped out my run on Friday so that I would know my exact mileage.)  I left my street and ran to my parents’ neighborhood and went down every single street then finished up by running to my cousin’s driveway (gotta love living close to so much family!!!).  Man, I didn’t realize how many hills there were in my parents’ subdivision!  I felt like I was constantly running up a low grade incline.  Towards the end of the run, I had about a third of a mile that I got to run downhill.  It was glorious, but then I remembered that the very final piece of my run was one third of a mile up a fairly steep hill.  After jumping over a snake (I ran back to make sure he wasn’t dead – he wasn’t), I was feeling so tired for that last uphill climb.  The thoughts of “man, this is not going to be fun” and “I wish I was finished already” were creeping into my mind, but then something amazing happened.  “Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana starting blasting into my ears, and it was the perfect motivation to finish my run strong.  I ran my 4 miles in exactly 40 minutes, so I was happy.  I would like to get faster at some point, but I know that will come with training.  

Even though it was pretty early, I knew my cousin would be up with her kiddos, so I walked up her driveway and she met me at the door.  She was kind enough to let me have a large glass of water AND chocolate milk, and then she even gave me a ride home.  She is too sweet.  When I arrived home, I ate the other half of my sandwich thin and then did about ten minutes of deep stretching and used my special foam roller, aka my rolling pin.  Even though it was a little painful at the time, it paid off because my legs were not sore at all the next day. 

This picture has nothing to do with this post, but it was taken this weekend at my friend Amy’s wedding reception.  It’s my new favorite picture, so I wanted to share it with you. 🙂

I’m off to fix some food for our pool party and cookout with family today!  Even though we are all enjoying the holiday weekend, I hope that everyone takes the time to remember and appreciate all those that served our country in the past, those that gave their lives for our freedom, and those that are currently serving.  


So tell me…

What are some of your best eats lately?

Do you have the day off today?  How are you celebrating?


14 Responses to “Recent eats and my first “long” run”

  1. 1 Angie @ Pint of Goals May 28, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    Great job on your run! You will definitely get faster as you train, but someone told me once that the first “big” race you do, the goal should be just to finish. My goal was just to not stop running, having good music or friends to chat with helps with that.
    I just bought unsweetened coconut and would not have thought ot add it to a smoothie. Now I just have to find coconut extract.
    Brody and I are having a pretty lazy day at home: grocery store, planting my garden, grading, and lots of tv. Have a fun day with your fam!

    • 2 natalie @ southern fit foodie May 28, 2012 at 6:01 pm

      Yeah, my goal for my first half is “run the whole time and don’t die” haha. Coconut extract was with the other extracts at our local grocery store. I bought the generic brand, and it has some funky ingredients, but for only using 1/2 a teaspoon I think I’ll be okay. 🙂

  2. 3 notsodomesticated May 28, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    Aww I love that picture of you and Daniel! So sweet!!

    And I love that you are posting more recipes these days. I need to try that smoothie!

  3. 5 ittybitsofbalance May 29, 2012 at 6:48 am

    You and Daniel both look great in that picture! I love it (although I already saw it while I was stalking your Facebook default earlier yesterday 😉 haha!)

    Congrats on knocking out your first long run! In the beginning the long runs can seem so intimidating– or at least they did for me when I started running! That’s really awesome that you had a nice glass of chocolate milk waiting for you though. Sounds like the perfect motivation in my book 😉

    Love ya girl!

  4. 7 In Sweetness and In Health May 29, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Awesome job on your run pretty lady!! Hills can be the worst, especially when they come at the end…that always happens for me because I have to run uphill to get back to my house at the end of my runs. But it’s glorious when a great song with a strong beat comes on! I LOVE that song haha. And you and Daniel look awesome 😀

  5. 9 Ashley (@MyFNFDiaries) May 29, 2012 at 9:53 am

    great job on your long run girl!! hills are certainly the worst and always make me feel like i’m running double of what i’m actually doing. i love that photo of you and your husband! so cute! and i have to laugh when you say “cookout” with your family… i was in the midwest this weekend and everyone says that there. where i’m from we always call it barbecue. too funny!

  6. 11 Val @ Tips on Healthy Living May 29, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    That shakes sounds awesome. Great tip about the xanthan gum. Never heard about that before!

  7. 13 Charissa (@ColourfulPalate) May 29, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    Good for you! The first long run in training is always a little scary/exciting!

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