• Categories

  • Follow Dustin’s running journey

    Running Training Log
  • Follow Tracy’s running journey

    Running Training Log
  • Advertisements

Just Keep Blogging, Just Keep Blogging

“Just keep swimming, just keep swimming”Finding Nemo

Why hello friends!  I just have to say, I give the big-time bloggers some major props for being so consistent with writing multiple blog entries a day for multiple years.  I didn’t realize how time consuming it can be!  Have no fear, though.  We absolutely love it!!  Now, we’re just working on creating a consistent schedule of blogging times.

Anyhoo, here’s a quick recap of some our EATS from the past couple days.

We were a little more adventurous with our breakfast dishes this week! Woohoo!

First up is a very KathEats-inspired breakfast.  A few days ago, she had posted some French toast with warm pears and, no lie, I literally booked it to the kitchen to recreate it!  SO YUMMY! It was my first time actually making French toast too. 🙂

The ingredients:


  • 2 eggs
  • 2 slices of Sprouts Wheat and Oats bread
  • A splash of vanilla rice milk and vanilla extract
  • A dash of cinnamon and brown sugar
  • A chopped up pear (for topping)

Mix eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and brown sugar in bowl:


Place bread in bowl and cover both sides with the mixture:


Heat on stovetop, flip, plate, top with pears, drizzle with maple syrup, sprinkle more cinnamon, and ENJOY!!

DSCN3428 DSCN3430

We also ate some veggie, rice, and bean wraps.  A STAPLE dish in this house!

Load up a whole wheat tortilla with rice, beans, peppers, onions, avocado, spinach, salsa, and Greek Yogurt.


Exploding with goodness:




Oh, hey! Another breakfast surprise and another KathEats-inspired dish:


DSCN3458 DSCN3459

Do I dare say, this is perhaps my new FAVE breakfast?  It kept me full and satisfied until lunch time!

To the pot, I added:


  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup rice milk
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon and brown sugar
  • Splash of vanilla extract

Cook on medium heat and swirl around until it reaches your desired consistency.


DSCN3463 With toppings:

DSCN3469 DSCN3492

  • Honey and almond granola
  • Scoop of peanut butter
  • Maple syrup

While I ate oatmeal, Dustin prepared his fave:


Omelette and pancakes!  He is willing to give oatmeal a chance this week though!  Wahoo!



Finally, some fitness news.  After a few days of trying to squeeze in running, yoga, and Whittle My Middle, we realized we were totally overwhelming ourselves.  It was our first week working out in a LONG time.

We’ve decided that we’re going to make RUNNING our priority for the next week, really enforcing it as a habit.  Then, we are going to introduce yoga and core exercises each following week.  It seems that in order to make a habit stick, it’s best to focus on ONE thing at a time, which is where we messed up.

Although we are just focusing on running this week, it doesn’t mean we won’t try to fit in other exercises.  We simply won’t stress it to the point where we feel bad if we don’t fit it in.

We also joined 24 Hour Fitness, since our apartment gym has been packed even in the morning now.  This ensures we have NO excuses for not finding the time to work out.  We’re also pretty pumped about the lap pool and some of the classes.  I think it will help us keep focused as we can add some variety to our workouts.

In regards to our running program, we are still doing the Couch to 5K (week 2, baby!).  From now on, however, we are walking/running for 50 minutes 6 days a week.  I read somewhere recently that for the first 20 minutes of running, your body is simply using up its glycogen stores and it’s not until after those 20 minutes that you begin burning fat, which is one of our aims.  So bring on the burn!!!

DSCN3477 DSCN3480

Oh, and we also haven’t been forgetting our daily green smoothies and salads!

DSCN3487 DSCN3489

I’m working on a Ten in 10 update post that will include our first two weeks and give you a glimpse into our progress so far.

Catch ya later!


Experiments in Soup-Making and Butternut Squash

Today was a slow-starting kind of day.  I think our early mornings caught up to both of us.  We fell asleep at 9PM last night and didn’t wake up until 9:30 this morning.  It’s so important to listen to your body and what it needs, so I’m glad we got that extra sleep.

We ate a quick breakfast, made our green smoothies, and spent the day running some errands.

Today’s green smoothie had a new ingredient: frozen peaches.  Yum!

DSCN3327 DSCN3333

Each smoothie contained:

  • 1/4 cup soy milk
  • 6 small pieces of chopped pineapple
  • 4 cups spinach
  • 3 slices of frozen peaches
  • 4 chunks of frozen banana
  • 2 T vanilla yogurt
  • 1 tsp flax seeds (ran out of chia seeds 😦 )
  • 2 T of water
  • 3 ice cubes

Ready to go!

DSCN3336 After errands we started working on:


The ingredients were super simple:


  • 1 celery stalk
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 red potato
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 3 vegetable bouillon cubes (we cheated a little)
  • 6 cups of water

Cut up all of the ingredients:


Chop the carrots and celery, slice the potato, and quarter the onion.  You can leave the skins on them all!

Heat two tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil on medium high:


When it’s hot, throw in all of the ingredients mentioned above:

DSCN3345 Let cook for 5 minutes without stirring:


DSCN3347 When the 5 minutes are up, stir the vegetables until they brown:



Once the vegetables are browned, pour in the 6 cups of water:


And three vegetables bouillon cubes.  We used these:


Bring to a boil, then let simmer for a minimum of 30 minutes (longer for more flavor).  We did it for about an hour:


When the time is up, scoop out the vegetables, which will leave you with a simple broth:


We made two batches and decided we didn’t want to throw away all of the veggies, so we poured the broth from the first one directly into the other batch that was cooking:


You can simply store the broth in your freezer for a later date.

Into the second batch we added the white and light green portions of leeks, 2 more cups of water, 1 cup of brown rice, 1/2 cup quinoa, and 4 cups of broccoli florets.  You also have to cut your vegetables into bite-site pieces, as opposed to huge chunks.

We then brought it to a boil and back down to a simmer for another 30 minutes or until the rice was completely cooked:

DSCN3401 We ate it with some Kashi Original 7-Grain CRACKers, Siracha, and a splash of tomato juice:

DSCN3409 DSCN3407

DSCN3414 DSCN3402

DSCN3412 DSCN3416

Overall, it was satisfying with loads of vegetables and protein-packed quinoa.  We both, however, agreed it seemed to be missing some spices.  More experiments to come, I guess!

Now, for our most delicious new discovery:


We’ve had these bad boys sitting in our fridge for a while now, and they were still good!  We just did a simple recipe on the stovetop.

The ingredients included:


  • 1 big butternut squash (we only used one of the two pictured above—1.5lb)
  • 1 T of minced garlic
  • 2 T of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup vegetable stock (or water)
  • salt and pepper to taste

First, peel the butternut squash.


Cut it into about 1/2 inch cubes:

DSCN3369 DSCN3370

DSCN3372 DSCN3373

Heat the olive oil on medium:


Add the minced garlic and stir until brown:

DSCN3377 DSCN3380

Once brown add in the cubed butternut squash and vegetable broth:

DSCN3382 It will seem like there’s not enough broth, but there is!  It will be low in the pan.

Bring to a boil, then simmer and cover for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

DSCN3383 After 15 minutes, simply stir the butternut squash until broth is absorbed and squash is browned to your liking.


We sprinkled ours with walnuts:

DSCN3397 And obviously HATED it:

DSCN3399 We’re about to head out now to pick up some more ingredients.  There will be many more experimenting with recipes in the next few days.

Goodnight and sweet dreams!

California Egg Scramble

Happy Friday Everyone!  Dustin here.  Today was day 3 of our morning running. 


We still have some Whittle My Middle and yoga to do tonight.

For breakfast we had, surprise surprise, pancakes and eggs! Maybe we’ll just make that the theme for the week so we can come up with some new ideas for breakfast next week.  

The pancakes gave us the perfect opportunity to try out one of our new pans (aka our other pans were dirty).  We have been putting off using them because we thought seasoning them was going to be a lot of work.  It was actually really easy!

DSCN3271 DSCN3273

First you heat the pan up for about 30 seconds on medium.  Then you drop 1 teaspoon of oil on the pan (we chose olive oil).  Finally wipe the olive oil around the inside of the pan with a paper towel.  Ready to go.

DSCN3275 DSCN3277

The theme for the eggs was:

California Scramble

Out of the following ingredients, can you guess which one inspired the name?


  • Mixed sweet peppers
  • Onion
  • Red Potato
  • Avocado
  • Tomatoes
  • Cheese (;))

Here are the steps we took to make the dish:

We sautéed the red potatoes for a couple of minutes with some olive oil in pepper since they take a little longer to cook.Then we added in the onions and peppers for a couple minutes more.


Throw in the avocado and tomatoes and stir all together.

  DSCN3284 DSCN3286

Pour the eggs over everything.  Throw on a sprinkle of cheese. Then start scrambling away.

DSCN3288 DSCN3290

Tracy’s finished breakfast plate.


There’s some avocado.  Yummy!!!


My breakfast plate  with lots of tomatoes.  I even had a full glass of tomato juice with it.


I love my tomatoes.


Check back later for our homemade soup! Thanks for reading… Dustin

The Hardest Part is Getting Started

Heyooo, everyone!  How is your week going?  I can’t believe it’s already Thursday.  The week flew by for us.

Yesterday we didn’t get a chance to post because we were super busy cleaning the apartment from top to bottom.  It’s amazing how much stuff we always find despite our efforts to minimize clutter.  Bah!  But what are you gonna do?

Anyways, we kind of used cleaning as our exercise.  It was a lot of work, and we definitely burned some calories.

Here are some of our eats from the day.  Let’s just say it was a cheese-a-licious day!  I realize cheese is not the healthiest food, but it’s awesome! And we still got greens.

The day started with egg and cheese on whole wheat English muffins with mustard:


Somewhere mid-morning, the green smoothie craving kicked in:DSCN3090DSCN3097 DSCN3098 Mmmm. Love. Love. Love!

A snack of orange and apple slices:

DSCN3100 DSCN3101

Grilled cheese English muffins (hmm our breakfast minus the egg…guess we weren’t feeling the creativity yesterday) with Deep River Kettle Cooked Chips and salad mix from Costco:


DSCN3107 DSCN3105

And tomato soup (I couldn’t get an appetizing picture, but it tasted amazing):


Later that night, we had some Annie’s “peace sign” mac and cheese:

DSCN3116 DSCN3119

Loved the concept, but overall, I wasn’t that impressed with this particular flavor. I do like their other flavors.  Dustin, on the other hand, really liked it and said he would easily go buy some more to eat right now.  😉

We also attempted to make some hummus:

DSCN3135 DSCN3138

It looked sooo good, but we hated it! Maybe we are too addicted to Sabra.  Probably.  Dustin tried fixing it by adding in all kinds of random ingredients, but it just got worse.  C’est la vie!  If anyone has any amazing hummus recipes, we’d love to know! We’ve attempted many times and it’s never right.

OK, now flash forward to today.  Well I guess if it’s today, then you wouldn’t need to flash forward because you are already here.

It was day 2 of Couch to 5K.  It was also our second day of waking up at 5AM for a morning workout.  I’m not going to lie.  It was extremely hard to get up this morning.  Not sure if it’s been the unusually cold weather or getting to bed a little later, but we ALMOST decided to snooze.

Dustin deserves all the credit for getting us up.  It really helps to have a supportive partner.  I kept saying, “Do you want to sleep for another hour?”  I think I asked so many times that he was finally just like, “Let’s just get up!”. We felt so incredible once we got to the gym and really just have to remember that feeling every time we struggle to get ourselves up.  The hardest part truly is getting started.


  • Both treadmills were working at the gym today.  This meant we knocked it out in much less time.  Score!
  • Dustin discovered XM radio built into the walls of our apartment’s gym.  Needless to say, he was pumped because his headphones went out and one of the XM fitness channels plays the exact type of music he would normally play.  Double score!

DSCN3142 DSCN3143

Super attractive red face…sweet!


Today I decided that after every workout (starting tomorrow), we are going to take a picture of ourselves holding up a sign that says how many days we’ve been hitting the gym.  Then, after 365 days, we are going to each create a slideshow that goes through every picture from start to “end”(fast forward style) in order to see how our bodies have transformed.  It will be fun just to check every couple weeks or so too.  😉  If anyone else is interested in taking part in this, let me know! Maybe we can have everyone’s compiled on one website and it can be motivation for people just getting started.

After the gym, we did our first session of yoga at home.  We put candles around the living room to set a tranquil mood.  It made me so happy.

DSCN3150 DSCN3151After some yoga, we made breakfast.  We have a slight pancake addiction right now.  At least they are healthy ones, and I added chia seeds for an extra health boost.  I made the pancakes while Dustin whipped up a big southwestern omelette for us to share.   It had salsa, green/yellow/orange/red peppers, and a sprinkle of cheese.



DSCN3158 DSCN3163

Then, we headed out to RunTex and Costco.  We needed to go to RunTex to swap out Dustin’s shoes.  He had blistered abnormally fast and called Donnie, the man who we met the first time, in order to find out if it was the shoes or if he was running improperly.  Donnie was SO nice.  Such genuine service.  He had us come by in order to re-do Dustin’s sizes and watch him run some more.  Dustin  tried on some more pairs and was able to swap his out for a pair that fit him much better. Donnie and his wife also gave us more great running tips, as well as advice on eating a diet with no meat.  Thanks, Donny and RunTex!

While we were there, our curiosity (and hunger) caused us to try these:

DSCN3166 DSCN3167

Freeze-dried fruit made locally.  We tried the strawberry and decided we prefer our fruit juicy.  We have yet to try the pineapple.

For lunch we wanted something quick so we swung by the grocery store to pick up these goods:

DSCN3177 DSCN3175

And this:


This is what we created:

DSCN3178 DSCN3185DSCN3183We’re not usually fans of“imitation” products and prefer cooking from scratch on most occasions, but I have to say, these were awesome!  I honestly felt guilty at points because it felt like I was eating an actually hamburger.  Which is also the part that weirds me out.  We gave it two thumbs up!

Some apple slices to snack on the way to Costco:

DSCN3191 DSCN3194

And we haven’t been forgetting to bring our water bottles with us:


Now it’s time to go prepare some dinner!  We’re making Quinoa Vegetable Pilaf from Savvy Vegetarian’s website tonight.  Exciting! We’ve been needing some more protein.

Hope you’re all having a fabulous day and feeling great!

A Fresh New Start in 2010 – Our Story and Goals for the Ten in 10

I’ve never really been a big fan of resolutions.  Of course, I’ve always told myself I was going to change this or that and then rarely took the steps to actually do it once January 1 hit.  Looking back, it’s clear to me why this always happened.  I simply wasn’t prepared.

I don’t mean “not prepared” as in I was making excuses as to why I couldn’t do something.  I mean “not prepared” as in I didn’t equip myself with the proper knowledge, tools, and motivation to achieve my goals effectively.

Our Story

As Dustin and I have been on a weight loss journey since last spring, I can honestly say this is the first New Year’s where I am positive my goals will be met.  Last April the two of us joined SparkPeople with the hopes of losing some weight.  We not only lost close to 30 pounds each, but we also began an eye-opening journey into the world of food.

We’ve always loved cooking together.  In fact, we loved cooking so much that within two years of dating we both put on some major pounds, or as Dustin’s mom put so nicely: happy fat.  You know, the kind of weight you put on because you’ve met that one person who loves you regardless of how you look.  We were so happy and in love that we just got comfortable.  We loved cooking steaks, Chinese food, and buttery dishes.  We also spent lots of time (and money) eating out or on the go.  After nearly two years of eating extremely poorly, we not only started noticing differences in our bodies, but also in the way we felt.  We were losing motivation, were always lethargic, and simply didn’t have the zest for life that we each had before meeting one another.  As much as we were happy together, we became miserable as individuals.

Close to our heaviest weights--we took most pictures only from the chest up at that time

Everything changed the minute we found SparkPeople and a little book called Eat to Live by Joel Furhman.  Initially we simply practiced portion control and working out.  The weight did come off, which felt great, but after reading Eat to Live, eating smaller portions of any kind of food simply wasn’t going to cut it anymore.  We were both disgusted and dismayed to learn about the various industrial food practices that take place, as well as the kinds of ingredients that get put into our main food supply.  We couldn’t believe that no one ever taught us this in school.

I would be lying if I said that the changes we made were easy.  It was difficult. We fought many times about whether we were “taking it too far” or if we even had the money to eat organic and natural food.  We found ourselves constantly scanning ingredients on every package.  Every time we thought we found something healthy, I would point out another ingredient that made it bad.  Suddenly many of our “go-to” healthy choices were no longer healthy.  It became an extremely stressful process and at times made us wish we could have remained in our state of  ignorant bliss.

Eventually though, we began to appreciate the journey.  We knew that to avoid the stress, all we had to do was stick to foods closest to their natural source.  We began to buy groceries at Whole Foods and farmer’s markets in order to avoid all of the temptations in mainstream grocery chains.  By choosing to only buy from sources that sell food in its purest form, it became not only an easier experience, but a more enjoyable one as well.  Not to mention, we’ve actually learned to spend less money on groceries by changing to a more healthy diet.  Fast food, restaurants, and junk food were for so long the main cause of financial burdens and we never even realized it.


In addition to reading more books on health, food, and fitness, we also began following blogs last summer.  It was so inspiring to find an even wider community of people who were living the kind of lifestyle for which we were striving.  Although we’ve personally only been blogging for about a month, we already feel the wonderful effects of being part of such an amazing group of people.  It is the best feeling in the world when you find people who really understand exactly what you’re going through and can guide you on your journey.

We have been far from perfect in trying to change our unhealthy habits.  We love going out to new restaurants, sometimes eat from non-organic sources, take comfort in junk food on occasions, and fell off the bandwagon when it comes to fitness.  Despite our slip-ups, one constant has remained.  We have kept the off the weight we lost last summer.  In fact, we kept it off effortlessly.  Because we changed our habits and didn’t actually “diet”, there has been no chance for us to gain the weight back.

We have no desire to EVER go back to the way we used to live.  Changing our diet has poured over into so many other areas of our lives and for that reason alone, we know we are on a path that will only keep bringing us in a more positive direction.  We still have a ways to go, but we are ready for each and every challenge that lies before us.

With that, we bring your our goals for the Ten in ’10 Challenge.  We plan to go more in depth on certain goals in later posts in order to explain why we chose them.  We will also post a separate entry on our overall goals for the whole year.  So stay tuned for that!


  • No meat for 10 weeks (eggs, dairy still allowed)


  • Eat one BIG salad per day


  • Drink one green smoothie per day

  • Complete Couch to 5K Challenge (9 weeks)


  • Run our first 5K race in week 10


  • Do Yoga at home at least 3 days per week


  • Walk/hike on one local trail per week

  • Always carry water


  • Get 7-8 hours of sleep


  • Eat more whole, unprocessed food


  • Lose 1-2 pounds per week


  • Take part in Whittle My Middle challenge for 30 days

  • Limit alcohol to special occasions (ie birthdays, holidays, family visits, etc)


This may seem like a hefty list, but overall, most of our goals are just small changes we need to make in our everyday life.  We’ve already started many of them and love how great we’ve been feeling in just a few days.   We view the Ten in ’10 as the foundation for long-lasting habits.  Keep reading our blog for weekly updates on the progress we’re making.

Hope you enjoyed learning more about us and what brought us to blogging.  We’d love to hear from you and learn about your goals and resolutions!  If you have a blog, link back to your resolutions page in the comments below or feel free to just let us know some of the changes you are planning to make in the coming year!

Vegetarian Burrito Bowl – Make your own Chipotle at home!

For lunch today, we made our own version of Chipotle’s Vegetarian Burrito Bowl—with loads of spinach.  We have been banging through the 2.5lb bag of Spinach we bought at Costco at the end of last week. 🙂

We filled a huge plate with a few handfuls of spinach and then added the following ingredients:

Black beans and sautéed bell peppers and onions:

Homemade Chipotle Salad 010Homemade Chipotle Salad 006

We simply nuked a can of organic black beans and sautéed  the veggies with organic extra-virgin olive oil  and salt+pepper.

Next up, we made our version of the cilantro and lime rice:

Homemade Chipotle Salad 007We had plain brown rice that was cooked and refrigerated two days ago, so we sautéed it with olive oil, about 2 Tbsp of chopped cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice to taste.

Then we made some guacamole in the food processor:

Homemade Chipotle Salad 003Homemade Chipotle Salad 009

We threw in 4 avocados cut in half, 2 Tbsp of our homemade salsa (recipe to be posted soon..but any salsa will work), 1/2  Tbsp minced garlic, and salt+pepper.  So delicious and creamy.  We are loving the food processor!! Hummus to be made in the near future, for sure.

To the top of the salad, we added a dollop of Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese (grated in the food processor):

Homemade Chipotle Salad 008 Homemade Chipotle Salad 012

Greek yogurt is an excellent healthy alternative to sour cream and tastes almost exactly the same.  And believe me, I am pretty hardcore about my sour cream. 😉

The finished product (with some tomato slices for Dustin):

Homemade Chipotle Salad 016

A touch of hot sauce was added.

Homemade Chipotle Salad 017 Homemade Chipotle Salad 018

This is seriously a great way to take care of any Chipotle craving you may be having.  Not to mention the fact that our salads were HUGE and filled with much more greens!  We also have leftovers galore.   I love me some Chipotle, but it’s great when you have control over exactly how your food is prepared.  Try it out!

Our First Morning Workout!

Today we woke up bright and early at 5AM for our first morning workout.  We were actually in bed by 9PM for the first time.  Woohoo! It felt so good to get an ample amount of sleep and still wake up early. 

We were out the door by about 5:20. 


We’re fortunate enough to have a gym at our apartment, so we go there to do the Couch to 5K program.  We planned to start last night, but it was PACKED.  Not one machine was available, and we didn’t want to wait until it was too late because we knew we wouldn’t wake up early.

This morning, however, we had the whole gym to ourselves. I think this time will work out perfectly. 🙂

DSCN3009 DSCN3003

We quickly realized one of the treadmills is currently down, but we didn’t let that stop us.  While one of us did Couch to 5K on the treadmill, the other did stretches and floor exercises.  Eventually we want to add a strength training program, so any suggestions are more than welcome.  We are complete newbies.

After the gym, we came home and each ate half a banana to refuel (or fuel for the first time today).  Tomorrow, we will eat something small before working out.

Then we did Angela’s Whittle My Middle exercises.  Holy cow!  Those definitely showed us how badly out of shape we both are.  It’ll be interesting to see our progress as we continue doing it every day. 

Here are today’s results:

  Dustin Tracy
Front Plank 60s 40s
Side Plank 30s each side 30s each side
Torso Twists 15 reps 15 reps
Plank ups FAIL FAIL
Boat pose 15 reps 30s hold
Bicycle 2 sets of 30 reps 2 sets of 30 reps
Side plank w/ twists 8 reps 8 reps

We both had issues with the plank-ups.  I think we need to build up some more arm strength, but rest assured, we will be able to do them by the end of this challenge!

Check out Angela’s page at Oh She Glows if you’re interested in participating or learning more about the exercises we’ll be doing. 

Although we felt sore after it was all said and done, it feels amazing to have accomplished so much before the start of the day.

We were starving, so we cooked up some more whole wheat pancakes and vegetable egg scrambles—can’t get enough of them.

I had one egg (with Siracha) and two small pancakes:

DSCN3012 DSCN3013

Dustin had two eggs and two bigger pancakes:

DSCN3020 DSCN3023

He is loving his new Habanero hot sauce he got for Christmas:

DSCN3017 Time to shower and get ready for the day.  I promise our goals post is coming…they are already written.  🙂

Have a good morning!