Categories
Health Life Recipes

Health

From time to time, while stuffing chips and cherry coke down my throat, I wonder how I am supposed to convince my patients that its easy to be healthy in the midst of their busy lives. Exhibit A. I sit down for most of my day. Standing up in lab makes me angry. I eat cookies and brownies and coffee full of cream and sugar and whatever else I can find to shove into my face. I don’t run most days. The healthiest things I eat are when I bring my lunch and thats usually microwave pasta or a turkey sandwich with yogurt and apples. And Lord knows I don’t get enough sleep.
But eating healthy on a quick stop to Quiktrip is really hard. Their “naked” juices cost 4 bucks and I’m never really sure what all they put in it.
So, today, instead of popping out out bed and studying anatomy like I should, I decided to try something. Ya’ll know I love my juice. It makes me feel good, lotsa vitamins and all. Its pretty filling and energizing too. But my dang juicer that I love so very much is a little high maintenance. You have to clean it right away because fruit beaten to a pulp rots pretty quickly and its really sticky. So I juiced everything all at once. Fresh pressed juice can be stored for up to 5 days in an airtight container. I made six bottles. All I have to do is shake it and its good to go.  So now I have delicious real juice all week and it took like 20 minutes! I’m so happy!
I made a red juice.
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And a green juice.
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The red was- 2 beets, lots of baby carrots, 1/2 lb raspberries, 1/2 lb strawberries, 1 red pear, 3 small fuji apples
The green was- A bushel of kale, 1/2 bag fresh spinach, 2 kiwis, 2 green pears, 2s small fuji apples.
So there’s my small step towards health this week during a busy schedule. Its so much easier to drink all those good sugars and nutrients than constantly munching on kale and pears.
Since its red and green, I thought I would also tell you that it’s 46 days til Christmas and 39 school days left til the semester is over. I have almost made it! WOO!
 

Categories
Health Recipes Running

Three Easy Post-Run Drinks

Water of course. There is very little else that is quite as satisfying after a sweaty run. I’ve heard of water being best for you right after a run when the water is room temperature or just a little bit chilled. Ice water is sometimes too cold and can cause irregular heartbeat. I sometimes put a tablespoon of chia seeds in, wait a couple minutes, stir and then you’ve got fiber and omega-3s in it too!
Chocolate milk is hailed as the perfect post-run drink, and its a favorite of mine too. Something about it having the right ratio of sugar, protein, and carbs for recovery. It’s even better if you drink it within 30 minutes. I use 2% milk and Carnation Instant Breakfast chocolate powder for the extra vitamins that Hershey’s syrup and Nesquik don’t have.
Smoothies. I love smoothies (and juice!) after my runs. Something about the creaminess that chocolate milk with the fresh- or frozen- fruit. Vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber to boot. I love summer for the fresh fruit but this recipe can be used with frozen fruit in the winter, and it makes it extra cold and icy!
Post-Run Smoothie
5 or 6 medium strawberries with the leaves cut off
1 large handful of blueberries
6 oz. cup light vanilla yogurt
1/2-3/4 cup of vanilla almond milk
Blend it and drink!
AND
If you’re like me, you could drink all three after one run!
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Categories
Running

Half Marathon

Something exciting has happened! I did a thing!
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I registered for the Route 66 Half Marathon in Tulsa. November 23, 2014!
So apparently my sad, recreational running can now go by the fancy name of “Half Marathon Training”
Some of my thoughts on this situation.
Negative: My “long run” of the week is only at six miles.
Positive: I’ve done said long run twice a week for the past two weeks.
Negative: It’s going to be hard to train throughout the semester.
Positive: I have 17 weeks to do it!
Negative: My gym membership expires August 1.
Positive: I can use the medical school gym on August 1!
Negative: Running is hard.
Positive: It makes me feel like a beast.
Negative: I may not run a very good time at the half.
Positive: It’ll be my first time racing this distance so it will be a PR!
Yay.
 
Here is a quote I leave you with by the awesome Lauren Fleshman. She’s an educated runner, mom, granola bar maker, blogger, and basically the running female version of Samuel L Jackson in terms of being hard-core. The quote is about signing up for races so I thought it was appropriate.
“This is how it happens. You see people racing, their hearts exposed, vulnerable among millions. And then you sign up.”

Categories
Health Life

Let's Talk About This Whole Juice Cleanse Thing

When I last updated you on Day 2, I was about to have my cashew banana shake for dinner. I did drank it again and was feeling fine. After that, I went to Lowe’s with my parents and started thinking about the benefits I had gotten from solely juicing for two days. Honestly, there weren’t very many.
Is juicing healthy and beneficial? Yes. Does it constitute a balanced diet on its own? No
At this point I really really really wanted actual food with substance, and I began to get a headache. And then my parents stopped at Chili’s and the whole thing was settled. I decided to listen to my body instead of depriving it just to complete the arbitrary three days.
I needed food. At Chili’s, I had chips and salsa and a cup of potato soup. Though it wasn’t much food, I was completely satiated.
I finally had energy again!
I will say that it is a pretty amazing feat to eat only fresh fruits and vegetables and it did make me feel healthier in my mind, knowing I was getting so many vitamins and consuming things straight from a farm. But, I didn’t feel particularly cleansed of toxins or stool like I was expecting to. Also, I did lose a lot of water weight and felt like I had tighter muscle tone. Though, that could be because my muscles were breaking into their glycogen stores for energy, haha.
On the first day before I started I weighed myself. So there’s that. Take it as you will.
Day 1 – 117 lbs
Day 2- 114 lbs
Day 3- 115 lbs
Day 4
The next morning (Day 3) I was not hungry at all, but I ate some raw cashews for my last day’s dinner juice because they were delicious and crunchy and so what difference does it make if I puree them or eat them plain? Then, I had my morning green juice just because it tastes so good.
Life is much better when you can juice and eat what you want.
What did I learn from this?
“Juice cleanse” is probably just another fad diet. And yes, I got sucked in. None of us are immune. Fact is, a balanced diet is just that… balance. One food group will never get you whatever it is you are looking for from your food.
I’ve always gone off of all things in moderation. I eat what I’m craving, usually whatever I want. I don’t eat much, I walk a lot, stay active, and work out and run when I can.
I did explore lots of yummy juice combos and found out easy it is to get a lot of different colors in my diet. And, I think it really did help my digestive system. I had a couple people interested in the “digestive cleansing” that may/may not occur. If you have no interest in my bowel movements, feel free to stop here. To any men reading this : I still uphold that girls do not poop and all of the following is a lie.
Day 1- I went to the bathroom and felt emptied completely, though it was too soon to be from the juice and was probably just a regular stool.
Day 2- My stomach was crampy and I was bracing myself for diarrhea, but it never came. Stool was pretty soft though.
Day 3- This one’s sorta weird. But here it goes, I had wayyy more stool than usual and the beets made their appearance! Since I have never eaten beets before it was new to see dark red stool tinge the water pink and not want to call an ambulance.
So there you have it. I usually have a pretty slow digestive system but the juice seemed to regulate things and I felt like I was passing yesterday’s food each day (which is good) and was emptying completely. Very little discomfort and no diarrhea like I was expecting. I also noticed that without sips of soda and greasy chips, I hardly had any gas whatsoever.
My Take Aways:
1. Juice! Juice a lot, juice a variety of fruits and veggies- and even nuts! But don’t ONLY juice.
2. There is no cure-all, miracle food to make you feel magical all the time. (I knew this- I just was in a little juice bubble and had high expectations)
3. Try new things!
4. Be happy, be healthy! Just like the cheerio’s honey bee tells us.
 

Categories
Health Life Recipes

Juice Cleanse Update 3

Juice Cleanse Day 2 isn’t near as bad as yesterday.
First of all. Last night I didn’t drink my 6th juice because juice sounded so nasty. I had a splitting headache, and was also getting nauseous. I considered eating real food but powered through for two reasons.
1. In spite of thinking I was hungry, craving food (mostly bread and crunchy, salty things), my stomach never growled. So, I know physiologically, I am not starving myself. If I felt like I was starving myself I wouldn’t do this. That would be defeating the purpose of trying this- which is to discover health benefits of a raw, juice diet, and “cleanse” my body with easy-to-digest, nutrient-rich juice. Starving yourself is never healthy.
2. I’m stubborn.
I did the same breakfast juice as yesterday but instead of the pineapple/apple/cucumber mid morning juice I used one of my extra juices to try something new.
I pulled a baggy out that I prepped. It had a bunch of baby carrots, a bunch of strawberries, a large handful of spinach, and two nectarines.
It made a orangeish colored juice that tasted really good. The strawberries weren’t quite sweet but I liked the tartness they added. The carrot and nectarine went well together.
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I made the same lunch and afternoon juices as yesterday: the beet/apple/carrot and lemon/blueberry respectively.
I would definitely say I am glad I have nothing better to do that get stuff done around the house because I don’t have a whole lot of energy. Its also annoying to have to juice about every 2 hours and immediately clean out the juicer. So Blueprint and Suja pre-made juices definitely have the convenience going for them. If you don’t clean out the juicer right away, it never comes clean.
It definitely wouldn’t be feasible to make your own juices everyday if you had, say, a job, or school, or a life.
I have also decided that running on this diet wouldn’t be feasible either. I’ve only been doing core and body-weight exercises at home and it sort of makes me want to die and eat everything.
 
 
 

Categories
Health Recipes

Juice Update 1

It looks as though I’m tied down to home (aka my juicer) for the next three days so I will get some writing, unpacking, and juicing done. Sounds good to me!
The Bad News: I got really hungry. Like really hungry at about 2 AM last night. I thought “Oh boy”
The Good News: I woke up ready for some juice. I prayed “Give us this day our daily juice” and then jumped right into getting my first juice out.
I prepped last night so it wasn’t hard. I just grabbed the baggie labeled “Morning Day 1”
My first juice this morning was a big handful of kale, a big handful of baby spinach, a whole kiwi, and two small granny smith apples. I juiced that in my fancy juicer and then put the juice in a little blender cup and pureed it with a banana. Why? Juicing a banana definitely adds the banana flavor. I wanted something a little different out of the banana. Namely, its anti-diarrheal qualities. You know the BRAT diet? Bananas are the B. I just don’t want to have crazy intense juice poops if you know what I mean.
I’m calling this juice “Green Apple Jolly Rancher” because that’s what it tastes like. Seriously. It’s freaking delicious. The banana makes it more filling too. It made about 400ml of liquid and that is a lot to drink.
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I sipped my juice as I cleaned out my juicer. Then I went outside to sip my juice and dumped the pulp receptacle in my mom’s garden. The neighbors were like “Dang look at that perfect hippy girl composting and drinking juice; I wish I could be like her.”
Don’t fret neighbors! My Nike shorts were made in a sweatshop, so nobody is perfect!
 
 

Categories
Health Life Recipes

Breakfast

Thanks to my girls waking me up early, I’ve gradually been training my body to wake up earlier. Part of me being able to stay up all day and be productive includes getting a good breakfast too. I don’t like to eat right when I wake up though, so I waited a bit and then made this breakfast with fresh homemade juice in my juicer.
We had some chopped fruit left in the fridge from my party.
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It had apples, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, and grapes.
I added an apple and a handful of raspberries and threw it all in my juicer. I can be kind of be picky about my raw fruit if its too mushy or bruised or just not fresh, but the great thing about juicing is that I can get rid of that less-than-fresh fruit. I normally would have written off these raspberries as too icky to eat alone, but they were perfect in my juice.
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I’ve found that an apple and two or three handfuls of other fruits is enough to make a cup of juice.
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I added a spoonful of Chia seeds and stirred. It was one of the sweeter juices I’ve made, but it was still good and tangy!
My favorite juice so far has been apple, carrot, orange, blueberry juice!
I added a bagel with peanut butter, cinnamon, and sprinkles on it and ate a banana as well. While a big, fluffy, white flour bagel isn’t the healthiest, its filling and its my favorite. I’ve eaten these since I was a kid. I consider it even since I had juice 😉
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Now, after running a few errands, including getting my last TB skin test before school (eep!), I’m going for a run. I love (healthy) productive days!
 
 
 

Categories
Health Life Medical School

Nocturnal People

I’m pretty sure I am permanently a night person. If I wake up by an alarm I HAVE to have a nap that day or I get very sleepy around 1 to 4. If I wake up on my own around 11:30 (after going to bed at 2:00 AM), I don’t need a nap!
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Source
I’ve been a late night person for as long as I can remember. I stayed up late talking to my sisters when I was little. When I was in high school, I did my most productive homework (and watching Jimmy Fallon before he was on The Tonight Show) from 9PM to 1AM. College, well, you get the picture. Everyone stays up late in college. But, I am always sleepy in the morning. I envy the people that can wake up before 9 in the morning and actually feel okay about getting out of bed. I get sick and cranky easier when I’m running on low sleep for days at a time.
 
I have had big plans many times to be the type of person that goes to bed at midnight, wakes up at 6, goes running, showers and then starts the day at 8. No dice though. I plan to try again an get into a routine that I can handle and carry that into medical school. I want to be sure to get good sleep and a good workout at least 5 nights a week to stay healthy and sane.
Right now, I usually shower at night after everyone else is in bed. If I run, I do it at night, before my shower. I’ve heard it takes 2 weeks of getting used to a new sleep/wake cycle and you just have to get through it with no naps or extra sleep no matter how tired you are and then your body gets used to it.
I’ve also done some research on “alternative sleep cycles” in the past. Of course, I love the whole 8-hours-of-sleep idea too much to ever try this but I still can’t help but wonder if it actually works. Anyone ever seen any of these in action or used them yourself? Doesn’t seem like it would be healthy or sustainable. Plus who has the kind of life that allows for a 20 minute nap every three hours, besides newborns? That’s whack.
We’ll see how my plans go. I’ll probably lower my expectations and have to work up to the waking up at 6 thing. Even when I have 8AM classes, I wake up, oh at about 7:47.
Sleep is the best.

Categories
Family Health Life Quotes Running

Safe Running

My niece was with me last night and today during my classes. I have since realized my life is pretty boring for a six year old. And that’s with having gone to the park during one of my breaks.
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She woke up this morning before my alarm, thankfully knew better than to wake me, and was “Ready to start the glorious day of high school. Wait, are you in high school?”
“Nope, Kate. I’m in college.”
And yes she really did say glorious.
20 minutes into my first class she said “When is it time for a rest?”
Basically I am a granny. We still had fun though. We went rock climbing, played racquetball and went to an intramural futsol game.
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She dressed this little doll up on my iPad. She said “Look a swimsuit!” Sweet, modest, little Katie.
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One thing I do have in common with a six year old is that we both eat all day long, mostly a well-balanced diet of goldfish, apples, Easter candy, and pasta.
Anyway-
After many people begging and pleading with me to not run by myself at night, I have come up with some safer compromises that can be used as safer running tips.
I like night because its cooler, more peaceful, and the sun is not in my eyes. My face is really sensitive to sunburn and I’m a big time squinter.
But, especially in Shawnee I do not always feel safe.
1) For starters, a more obvious one- I usually wear a light colored shirt or something reflective.
2) I carry pepper spray on a little wrist band. You know- for rapists, serial killers, robbers, and more likely, big dogs.
3) If I run with music, I leave an ear bud out and lower the volume.
4) At each intersection, when I’m checking for cars, I take stock of my surroundings and look around behind me too. Not just as a paranoia thing, but for feral cats and skunks and weird kids trying to talk to me.
5) I only run in an area I’m familiar with. In Shawnee, I only feel comfortable in like a 2 square mile area. Its not always the most entertaining run, but I do zig zags like I drew in this picture of the beautiful city grid system to get to the mileage or time I want before I turn around. This usually works in neighborhoods best because you more than likely will have tiny blocks to go up in down each way. The example I have is in a square mile area but you can easily get 6 miles in.
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6) This might be the most paranoid tip, but I don’t make my Nike plus account viewable nor do I use the apps that post where I run on my Facebook. My nike plus account is hooked up to my GPS watch and keeps track of my pace and mileage, which are handy, but it can also show you my running habits like where I like to run, how long it takes me, and what time of day I went. So I keep both of those things private.
7) If at all possible, I take someone with me. My roommate rides her bike with me when she can and she has a bike light, giving us extra visibility. And if Zach comes with me, he has a head lamp and I don’t even have to bring my pepper spray. Boys are safe like that 🙂
Like I said, I’ve never had anything serious happen to me, but people walking in the dark sometimes do scare me. I’ve been chased by (and had to kick) a dog. And some places give me the heebie jeebies. So these are just the things I don’t take chances with.
How do you stay safe on a night run?