WIAW: Aruba eats!

My mom and I have kind of got a system down at night while we’re here.  After dinner we spend a little time wither walking around, going to the casino, or checking out the entertainment.  Once we’re back at our room, she reads for a while before bed and I either do the same or can pop in here to share little snippets of our day.  So I thought why not participate in WIAW and show you what’s going down (…the hatch) here in Aruba!

It’s honestly a bit of a waste of money for my mom and I to stay at an all-inclusive resort.  With me being a vegetarian and the both of us being non-drinkers, we definitely don’t get our money’s worth.  I’ve been doing my best to try different things each day but have found fruits and veggies/salads to be the easiest.  On the first day I literally ate ALL the bad things.  Anything and everything that was deep fried at the buffet, I wanted it.  I went to bed that night feeling horrible (as expected) and it truly wasn’t even worth it.  The french fries weren’t even that great and I looooove french fries.  So yesterday I was a little better at actually ingesting some nutrients and whaddaya know?!  I felt good.  Surprise, surprise.

Breakfast and post-run I went with the most random combination of food.  I guess I was craving salt from the ridiculous sweating so pickles and seasoned potatoes did the trick.  The fruit here is pretty awesome so I’ve been trying to eat some with every meal.


I definitely didn’t eat enough though because I was hungry within an hour and lunch doesn’t start until 1:00pm here so I had to listen to my growling stomach for longer than I would have liked.

For lunch I hit up the salad bar and had romaine, tomatoes, jalepenos, olives, more pickles, radish, and carrots with oil and vinegar as my dressing and topped with pistachios.  I also tried a veg-friendly sandwich (cheese, lettuce, tomato, and sprouts) which was just okay.  Aaaaand more fruit!


My mom and I went for a walk in the afternoon and found a Starbucks.  Apparently there are only three on the island!!  I ordered an iced coffee with two pumps of sugar-free caramel syrup and a touch of soy milk.  Oh my word.  It was fantastic, and this is coming from a girl that drinks coffee about once a month (except around Thanksgiving and Christmas when Starbucks has their fancy lattes…then things get out of hand).


We made dinner reservations at one of the a-la-carte restaurants but the only seating times available are 6:30pm and 9:00pm so we chose the later time.  I was ravenous around 6:30 so I ordered room service….nachos, of course.

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So good.

We went to the Italian restaurant for dinner and the only vegetarian option on the menu was a lasagna so I’ll give you one guess as to what I ordered.  Yep.  You nailed it.  Problem is – I didn’t even eat it because I filled up on pesto rice balls (aka ‘arancini‘) and bruschetta from the appetizer bar.

As you can see, my eats haven’t been too interesting and I doubt I will stray very far from the basics.  If you aren’t picky, there are TONS of options.  Lots of meat, chicken and fresh fish throughout the day.  For breakfast there are eggs made in every possible way – even an omelette station where they make it nice and fresh, adding in whatever ingredients you like.  There’s a cereal bar, yogurt, all kinds of cheese and deli meats.  You name it, they’ve got it.

Every night the buffet has a different theme so I’m hoping for something a little more exciting!

Hope you all had a great Wednesday!

We’re HERE!

Happy Tuesday!  Yesterday was a bit of a whirlwind.  My mom and I made it to ARUBA and spent the day at the airport/flying/more airport/riding to our resort/exploring/eating and all kinds of other fun stuff!  Oh, and she already won $170 at the casino!  I refuse to gamble but she gets pretty lucky.  She swears by the Michael Jackson machine…whatever that is.  I’ll share a few pictures from our day but first a quick recap of last week’s workouts (since I didn’t get to do my usual Marathon Monday post yesterday):

Monday: OFF

Tuesday: 5 miles @ 8:11 avg.

Wednesday: 3 miles @ 8:40 avg. + 25 mins elliptical + strength training

Thursday: OFF

Friday: 6.70 miles @ 8:25 avg. (this progression run)

Saturday: 7 miles @ 8:39 avg.

Sunday: 8 miles @ 8:19 avg.

No long run or speed work last week…whoops.


Plane ride selfie…because why not?


Plane snacks!  I’m re-reading Mile Markers for a little inspiration.  My friend Annie gifted me with this book a while back and I absolutely love it.


Our resort:


SO WINDY!  We read on Trip Advisor that it gets pretty breezy here and man, they aren’t kidding!!  It’s literally windy all day and you get sand blasted if you lay on the beach.  It’s kind of annoying but at the same time, it helps make the heat a little more bearable.


Nighttime beach walks aren’t so bad…


Her winnings.  I can’t even deal.


She’s going to kill me for posting that… ;)

I’m going to be really bad at responding to any emails/comments/messages this week so I apologize in advance.  I’m intentionally trying to spend less time on my phone and computer.  This resort makes it hard because there is literally free wifi EVERYWHERE but I’m trying to be a little more “unplugged”!  I’ll post and respond when I can but for the most part I’ll be soaking up the sun and being all kinds of lazy.


One down…

Friday.  Finally.  I woke up this morning with every intention to go to the gym.  My plan was to run there (1.5 miles away), lift weights, and then run home.  My first mile felt like I was running through sand.  I worked my legs two days ago and I’m feeling DOMS like cray today so let’s just say my hopes for a solid run were not high at all.  Once I got through that first mile though, I felt like a million bucks!  I instantly changed my plan and decided to scrap the gym and run until I felt like stopping.  I ended up running a 6-mile progression run (8:41, 8:31, 8:26, 8:18, 8:10, 8:05) with a .70 mile cool down (8:51).  It felt pretty darn good to have a decent run.


So remember that list I talked about yesterday?  Well I decided I should start chipping away at some of the things that sound appealing to me.  I was out running all kinds of errands today and happened to be near Urban Herbivore.  I’ve been there before but have always ordered their coconut curry with black rice.  The BBQ tofu sandwich is #96 on the list so I thought I’d give it a try and see what all the hype is about!


All I have to say is…I’ll definitely be going back for this!  The BBQ sauce on the tofu is amazing and the bread is freshly grilled rosemary focaccia.  Basically you’re eating a piece of heaven when you have this sandwich.  It came with a salad and I also got a green juice.  My order took about 10 minutes to make and they offered me a free muffin top for waiting.  Ummm.  Yes please.  Urban Herbivore definitely did not disappoint.  One down, lots more to go!  It’s going to be a very tasty summer.

I think Grasslands’ guacamole grilled cheese is next on my list…

ALSO – I forgot to tell you guys!!  Just a couple of week ago Vega added a “bloggers” section to their website where you can learn more about some pretty cool and inspiring women.  Not quite sure how I made that list but I’m not complaining! ;)


Click here to learn about the cool cats!

That’s it for today!  Hope you all have a fab weekend!  I hear it’s free slurpee day at 7-11 today??  I’m not a huge fan of them but if YOU are, GO GET ONE!!!  I’m more in a nacho mood tonight… ;)

Thinking Out Loud #26

Thinking Out Loud Thursday!  My favourite day!


1.  So with Aruba just four days away (WHAT?), I’ve been running around picking up some last-minute things.  I honestly don’t need anything but I like to have a couple of new bikinis or summer dresses whenever I go away.  My closet doesn’t agree but we’ve learned to tune out that nonsense… ;)  Anyway, I grabbed a cute hat that was on sale at Aritzia and check this out…


I saved a whopping $3.  A sale is a sale and sure, it’s better than nothing…but really?

2.  While preparing for this trip I realized how much has changed over the years.   In the past, when I knew I was going on a beach vacation I would be sooooo careful with the things I ate and super diligent about workouts in the weeks leading up to the trip.  I was always worried about looking my best in a bikini.  I’m not saying I haven’t thought about what it’s going to feel like prancing around the beach nearly naked, but it’s definitely not affecting me the way it used to which is kind of awesome.  I’ve eaten pizza, tacos and roti this week without even thinking twice.

3.  Speaking of tacos, I had my favourite butternut squash tacos again this week (don’t act surprised).  I ordered takeout one day for my aunt and cousins and when I was placing my order I asked for no red onions on my tacos (I HATE red onions) and the girl asked me if I wanted EXTRA SQUASH instead!!!  Ummmm…yes please.  I definitely think that was 100% against all rules on her part but whatevs.  I’m all about that extra squash.


You bet I’m going to ask for it every time I go from now on.  Maybe I can ask them to replace the kale, tomatoes, onions, and cilantro with squash.  I’d probably get kicked out again.

4.  You know when you just love a particular food or drink and then it just magically disappears or becomes discontinued?  Well, back in high school my most favourite drink ever was Tahiti Treat.  I used to drink it regularly with a beef patty of course (how things have changed, eh?).  Tahiti Treat became impossible to find so I eventually just gave up.  I stopped drinking pop anyway so it didn’t matter too much anymore and then look what happens…


They changed the name to Tahitian Treat and is now made by Dr. Pepper/Seven Up vs. the good ol’ C Plus but it still tastes the same! I’ll be honest – I felt drunk after not even half a can.  I don’t think my body is made for pop anymore after not drinking it for so many years!

5.  I got my blood test results back and apparently I have a vitamin B12 deficiency so I’m about to become a pill popper.  I’m not so excited about this.  I need to do more research and find out if there are any foods I can start eating more of/incorporating into my diet so I don’t have to take pills forever.  If anyone has any advice (Angela, I’m looking at you!) I’d be forever grateful!

6.  Toronto people – Vegan Culinary Crusade has compiled a list of the top 100 must-try vegan dishes in the city!!  I can’t believe that I have only tried maybe two or three items from the entire list.  BLASPHEMY!  I better get started!!  The only problem is that about 99% of the items are definitely not good for you.  Deep fried ice cream?  Vegan Mac and Cheese?  Vegan Butter Chicken Burrito (I don’t even know how this is possible…)?  Snickerdoodle French Toast (…okay this sounds amazing)?  Just because these things are labelled vegan, it doesn’t mean that they’re wholesome and nutritious.  I’m all about balance and eating things that destroy your insides every once in a while but they could have thrown a few more salads and actual plant-based meals on that list…

7.  I know I’m not the only one who hates when this happens:

Screen Shot 2014-07-10 at 6.54.42 PMAm I right or am I right?!

8.  That’s it for today!  Off to do some Thursday night laundry.  Don’t be jealous… ;)

WIAW: it’s been a while

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!

I’m posting a little late today but the last couple days have been kinda nuts.  I had a doctor’s appointment yesterday as I’m still trying to figure out my GI issues and today I had to go get some blood tests.  I also have a colonoscopy scheduled for the day after I get back from Aruba.  Something to look forward to right?!  Ugh.  Anyway, let’s talk about food instead.

Breakfast: After a run/elliptical/strength training session I wanted nothing but a cold smoothie.  Banana, frozen berries, spinach, and water.


Snack: Vega One bar to take with me to the blood clinic.  I ate half before and half after, all while crossing my fingers hoping I wouldn’t faint.  I’ve had strange episodes in the past and feel the need to have a little sugar in my system.  It worked!  Maybe it’s all mental… ;)

Lunch: I was out running errands for part of the afternoon so I ate lunch on the go.  It’s been a while since I had roti and the last time I had doubles (which I ate too fast for a photo) was when I was in Trinidad last August.  It doesn’t photograph well but man, it was delicious.  Put potatoes in/on anything and I’m happy.


…aaaaaand some mango bubble tea just because.  Funny – the man at the bubble tea place saw me trying to take a photo of my drink and he was like “here – you want this for the picture?” and handed me that ninja.  What a good man.


Dinner: That roti held me over for quite a while but around 8pm I was feeling for a small dinner.  Avocado toast and a side of fruit.  It never fails.


Snack: Snap Pea Crisps while catching up on Amazing Race Canada!

Hope you had a great Wednesday and I’ll see you tomorrow for Thinking Out Loud Thursday!

Marathon Monday: do it anyway

Happy Marathon Monday! :)


I hope you had a great weekend.  Nothing too fancy happened over here.  I spent Saturday night watching the first few episodes of Orange is the New Black (season two), and eating empanadas and ice cream.  When you can’t decide between malt ball and chocolate peanut butter, you get both.


Yesterday I went for my long run, did some shopping for my trip, and spent the night hanging with my cousin.  Maybe not a fancy weekend…but pretty darn perfect.

Today I feel tired and sore.  My body feels like it got hit by a truck so I’m taking the day off from running and the gym.  Stretching and foam rolling sound really good right about now…which I did NONE of last week.  This is why my body feels the way it does.  I ran more miles last week than I have in a while and only took one rest day instead of my usual 2-3…

Monday: 4.53 miles @ 8:20 avg.

Tuesday: 6.2 mile tempo run @ 7:59 avg.

Wednesday: 3 miles @ 8:43 avg. + 30 minutes elliptical + strength training

Thursday: OFF

Friday: 5 miles –> this track workout

Saturday: 3 miles @ 8:44 avg. + 30 minutes stairmill + strength training

Sunday: 10 miles @ 8:38 avg.

I wasn’t supposed to run on Wednesday or Saturday but the parking lot at my gym is currently under construction and driving/finding parking takes longer than running there so I’ve been running the 1.5 miles there and back.

Now one thing I have grown to hate is strength training.  The have been times where I’ve absolutely loved it and couldn’t even imagine going back to running long distances but things have obviously changed.  It’s really, really hard for me to find the motivation to strength train.  I’d rather subject myself to 100 minutes on the elliptical every single day.  BUT I know how important it is to build a strong body when it comes to running (or any sport for that matter) so anytime I try to talk myself out of it and remind myself how much I hate lifting those weights, I just repeat “DO IT ANYWAY”.  It will benefit me in the long run.  I hope.

My goal is to strength train 2-3 times a week but sometimes it doesn’t work out that way so I’ve been doing something a little different.  I used to focus on one body part a day but that didn’t work very well because a lot of my muscles would be left neglected if I only made it to the gym a couple of times in one week.  Instead, I’ve been doing full body workouts to ensure all of my muscles are being worked in one gym session.  I’ve been loving the workouts so far and surprisingly, have been experiencing major DOMS doing only two exercises per body part.

Here’s an example of one of last week’s workouts (I did 3 sets of 12-15):

I linked YouTube videos for all the exercises in case you wanted to see what they looked like/try them out for yourself!

I don’t really do any ab-specific work because I focus on engaging them through all of the other exercises but sometimes I’ll throw in some leg lifts or planks if I’m feeling a little crazy! ;)

Aaaaaand I went to go pick up my pool running belt today!  This is the one I got.


I can’t wait to look like a total freak in Aruba.


We are going to…


Thanks for all of your recommendations on my last post!!  My mom and I looked into a whole bunch of places and ended up deciding on Aruba!  I’ve never been before but I have heard really good things and the resort we’re staying at looks pretty nice.  Most of the reviews on Trip Advisor are great too so that’s always a good sign, right??  We leave in NINE DAYS!  Crazy.


I’m not quite sure how this trip will affect my training.  Usually I’m pretty lax on vacations and don’t stress about working out but with my half marathon just seven weeks away, I’ll have to find a way to get some runs in even if they’re just on a treadmill.  I’m even considering getting an aqua jogger (finally) so that I can do my running in the pool instead of locked up in a gym.

Speaking of training, I hit the track for a “real” track workout yesterday morning and nearly threw up.  I just wanted to see where I was at so it wasn’t a super long workout but holy – it was tough.  I’m not used to intervals!  It went a little something like this:

2 mile warm up @ 8:52 avg.

4 x 400m @ 1:36, 1:38, 1:40, 1:43 (with 400m “recovery”/slow jog in between intervals)

1 mile cool down @ 8:22 avg.

I checked the training plan Phaedra created for me for the Vancouver Marathon to see what she had as my goal pace for 400s (which I never did – sorry PK!) and I was to be in the 1:50-1:54 range so I’m pretty happy with my performance!  Now I need to work on not slowing down towards the end! ;)

P.S. I just bought this really cute hat from Run Pretty Far:


A few people asked me about it on Instagram/Facebook so thought I’d link it on here too.

Okay – Off to enjoy the sunshine (after a morning at Costco – do not go on a Saturday)!

Hope you have a great weekend and I’ll be back Monday with a Marathon Monday post! :)