Kelly the Culinarian

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Training Tuesday

The timer resets after 100, btw
What a whirlwind week! I can happily say I've completed my longest treadmill run to date: 12 almost unbroken miles with my shows and my box fan keeping me company. It wasn't really that bad - I slowed it down to a comfortable pace and just settled in. I did have to break at 10.4 to hit the bathroom briefly, but I got right back at it. I would have kept going to complete a half marathon, just because that sounds more badass, but I had to get moving to make an appointment, which was the reason I did the treadmill in the first place.

As for the other disciplines, it wasn't a very regimented week. I didn't get in a second swim, but I did run almost every day of varying lengths. Since my focus is my April 2 marathon, I'm OK with that. I did bike twice, each with fairly steady speeds and time in the saddle.
As for this week, I'm a little under the weather, again, so we'll see what I'm able to accomplish. At the very least, I plan on a long run on Sunday to balance out whatever inactivity I need to beat this damn cold.

Happy training!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Three Things Thursday

1. I'm now LA Fitness famous. Or infamous. I managed to not just leave an item at the gym, but my entire swim bag containing paddles, a pull buoy, a kick board, goggles, swim cap and waterproof MP3 player. Plus my swimsuit. Then, I proceeded to not notice for a week. When I showed up to claim it, the guy behind the counter told me he knew the exact bag I described. I really need to put my name on it.
Basically, all of this
2. I'm definitely springing for the TSA Precheck. I filled out the application while I waited in the most ridiculous security line ever on my way back from Orlando. Not to mention, I almost missed my Orlando flight after waiting in the security line for 90 minutes. With the amount of time I spend in airports for work and pleasure, $85 for five years is well worth the investment.

3. Next week is the First Look for Charity! I just bought a fancy new dress for the event and am looking forward to eating my heart out. New goal: Eat ice cream in an even fancier car than I did last year.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Win it Wednesday: Corner Bakery Cafe Gift Card

I mentioned last week about my renewed interest in healthy eating and my little trip to The Corner Bakery. I've been a fan of the place since grad school. When I lived in Washington, D.C., there was a Corner Bakery on the ground floor of the National Press Club building that I would get lunch at some times. When you don't have a kitchen and are living alone, picking up a salad is about the closest thing to healthy eating I could muster.

I was contacted by their PR peeps because they're highlighting some of the cafe's favorites. I love the chopped cafe salad because I get quite a few of the tasty treats like bacon and chicken and blue cheese without blowing my calories for the day. Another surprisingly good for you option is the Anaheim scrambler, which I learned they serve all day. Without the breakfast potatoes, which aren't available after breakfast hours anyhow, it's a well-rounded option all day.

If you'd like to try some of the cafe's favorite entrees, I've got a deal for you. I have $15 in gift cards for one lucky ready. To win, just comment with your Corner Bakery favorite. On Feb. 11, I use random.org to select one winner. Good luck!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Training Tuesday

There's nothing I love more than the feeling of a long run done. Not just miles, but more miles than you've run in longer than you can remember. Spent, accomplished, cold, hungry. It's one of the paradoxes of running that you can feel so hallowed out by a run and yet so very fulfilled.

That's how I felt Sunday. I did four loops around Fermi lab, replicating in a small way what I'll experience during Circular Logic. It's been longer than I care to admit that I ran 15 miles, and damn did it feel good. I was tired, but nothing hurt. I don't know if I could've gone further.

As for the other two sports, I feel like I'm making progress. I did a swim practice last week with someone who actually knows what they're talking about and got a few pointers on things I can improve upon. I feel like it's worth the time and money to meet with a swim coach this spring before I get too far into training to see what I can fix now to potentially improve my swimming this summer. I also recognize there's only so much work I can do on my swim stroke. Eventually, I need to get out into open water and practice continuous swimming in race-like conditions. It's the different between treadmill runs and trails.

I'm spending more time on my bike, and my butt sure feels it. I've been looking into options for a full tune up for Suzie Slice and I think I'll opt for a Groupon buy. My goal is to be outside riding in April, get the bike all ready for the season and jump into distance rides by mid-May. There was a ride last year around that time that I missed out on because of a conflict, so I'd love to be able to tackle it this year.

Yet this week: Treadmill tempo run, one distance swim, one drill swim and one turbo trainer ride before the long run. Time to get it done!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Three Things Thursday

1. I'm back on the whole healthy eating bandwagon. I've lost weight before, it's just a matter of tracking and stick with it. I forgot all the nuances, like how I'm the most hungry directly after eating a meal. But my last Ironman pursuit was not the height of my fitness, so time to get back to lean muscles. To that end, I'm focusing on protein and vegetables. I was at the Corner Bakery last night and very impressed that I can enjoy a salad with bacon, chicken and avocado along with a cup of soup within my parameters. So much so that I've got a giveaway cooking up - stay tuned.


2. Since I work from home several days a week, I invested in a space heater for my home office. I figured it would be cheaper to set my Nest thermostat to "away" and heat just the space that I'm in rather than cranking the heat for the whole house all day because my toes are cold. I think Napoleon approves of this acquisition.


3. You may recall my love of Mall Madness runs deep. But check this out! By the time this version came out, I was "too old" for the game. But Goodwill's got my back. For $2, I have a fully functioning new-to-me Mall Madness with all the pieces. Plus, they had 7 Wonders for $15 - it's currently $36 on Amazon.


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What I Ate at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom

I was recently at The Happiest Place on Earth for two days, exploring the best Walt Disney has to offer. I stayed on site and did the whole Magic Band/FastPass+ thing, and because it was the off season, I feel like I saw a whole lot in two days.

I planned this in a hurry because I found super cheap airfare and figured why not, but I still managed to research tips, tricks and tastes. I looked into recommended food extensively, because, priorities. So here's a look at where I ate, and how many Mickeys I'd give each.

Whispering Canyon Cafe, Wilderness Resort


I stayed at the villas at Disney's Wilderness Lodge and had dinner here the first night. There's an all-you-can eat barbecue option that includes amazing corn bread, salad, green beans, baked beans and all manner of smoked meats. It's probably one of the best values at the park at $30 per adult and $15 per kids. It's amusing, too - it's an interactive dinner where kids can get a little rowdy playing along with the wait staff and each other. I'd say the focus is the entertainment factor more than the food. For the money, I think I'd rather go to one of the other resorts that offer a character buffet dinner.

Rating: 3.5/5 Mickeys

Waffle sandwiches, Sleepy Hollow, Liberty Square



I'm not ashamed to say I went back to this place. The menu features soft waffles served either with powdered sugar or as the foundation for sweet or savory sandwiches. The Nutella and fresh fruit was a crowd pleaser, while the ham, prosciutto and swiss was what made me want to come back. The spicy chicken and waffle sandwich is only served after 11 a.m. and didn't quite wow me, but of course I tried it. For research purposes.

Rating: 5/5 Mickeys

Pot roast mac and cheese, The Friar's Nook, Fantasyland



The standard mac and cheese at this place is pretty banging topped with good ol' panko. But for $1 more you can add pot roast, which propels it into foodgasm territory. The pot roast was a perfect example of slow-cooked meaty goodness, whereas the macaroni and cheese was perfectly creamy and delightful.

Rating: 5/5 Mickeys

Dole whip, Aloha Isle, Adventureland



I had to, right? It's the quintessential Disney food. Now I went with the classic Dole whip, but they also offer a float, which is the same frozen treat goodness atop a cup of pineapple juice. I've also heard that you can get this with rum in the Animal Kingdom, which is fitting, because I'd liken it to a very smooth virgin Pina Colada. It was tasty, but didn't knock my socks off. Maybe it's because it was the item I was most looking forward to and it couldn't stand up to the hype. the tl;dr is I'd much rather have my froyo with a million toppings

Rating: 2/5 Mickeys

LeFou's Brew and cinnamon rolls, Gaston's Tavern, Fantasyland



This place is a lot of fun. The LeFou's Brew was delicious and hard to describe. It's an icy-cold fruit-based beverage topped with what I think is frozen apple juice and fluff. It's sugary for sure, but also frothy and light. The cinnamon roll was the size of a toddler and also had a hint of apple juice in it, too. Sip the brew, skip the roll. IKEA's are better anyhow.

Rating: 4/5 Mickeys

So what did I miss at Magic Kingdom?