2020 – Goals, Line Up, and Infinite Limits

Am I the only the that looks at the number “2020” and sees multiple ways you could make the infinity sign? Every time I think about 2020, I feel like it’s going to be the year of infinite opportunities and chances to just LIVE.

I took a million chances in 2019: career, certifications in nutrition, more credentials in fitness, expanding my fitness instruction schedule, and more. I saw growth in my business that I didn’t expect. 2020 is MY year to reep the benefits of all that growth, bring life to bigger dreams, and just keep progressing.

That being said, I have decided on my “big races” for 2020 and my race goals. I mean, goals are always progressing and changing, but these are the base line foundation of what I’d like to accomplish:

March 2020: Canyonlands Half Marathon in Utah – 13.1 miles. I’d LOVE to PR this race, putting me at a 2:02 half time. I’d really LOVE to run a sub 2.

June 2020: Steamboat Full Marathon – 26.2 miles. I’d LOVE to PR this full, putting me at a 4:33 marathon time. I’d LOVE a sub 4:30.

July 2020: Grand Island 50k In Michigan – 31 miles. This is essentially my exciting race of the year. The traveling to get from small mountain town Colorado to remote island in Lake Superior is an experience in itself. With a 50k cut off time of 7.5 hours, that would put me at my PR for a 50k. My previous 50k times are 8 hours.

On a side note of Grand Island – I am from Michigan and I have a huge spot in my heart for the Upper Penisula and Lake Superior. I actually ran my first full marathon along Lake Superior, and recently went back to Mackinac Island to run the half marathon. I am really excited to get the opportunity to run an ultra on Grand Island with all day views of Lake Superior is rare. It’s not a populated island, it’s very remote, it’s wilderness. Not many people get to experience the entirety of the island. I’m stoked to enjoy every moment and every step of all 31 miles!!!

October 2020: Madness in Moab 24 hour event. While I’ve been terrified of the 50 mile distance and horrific cut off times, I decided to go for a 24 hour event. I thought I’d enjoy myself much more without the thought and mindset of chasing cut offs or being pulled off course. I think the 50 mile distance should take me about 16 hours, so the 24 hour event gives me plenty of time. This is a first year event and right on Halloween. So, either way it will be plenty of fun.

I am sure I will run a few small races here and there between these bigger ones. But, this half to full to 50k to 50 mile is my overall line up. I will be loving every bit from desert to mountains to lake and back to desert.

Spread the holiday cheer!

You know how it goes – there are many holiday parties on your calendar. You need to come up with some dish to pass ideas. You want to be able to eat something healthy, but not be “that” person with the store purchased veggie tray.

You want something thought out, something with some heart and soul in it. You want something cute, but something that will WOW others around you.

Great news! Greek Yogurt is the new cauliflower – it can become anything! Greek Yogurt can become a taco dip, a cookie dough, a pumpkin pie filling, a cheese cake, and in this case – a ranch flavored appetizer. Score! The recipe is at the bottom!

Essentially you can do this with any veggies you want. But I found it easiest to use yellow squash, zucchini and cucumbers and cherry tomatoes for the top. One of each veggie made about two dozen bites. As far as your Greek Yogurt ranch dip, you’ll need Fage 0% Plain Greek Yogurt – this is the only Greek Yogurt without added sugars and the only one that has higher protein than carbs. For your ranch flavoring, you’ll need garlic, onion, dill, Italian seasoning.

You can see from the photos that you basically need to slice your veggies, top with your Greek Yogurt Dip mix and then top with a half a cherry tomato. Presented on a beautiful platter, it brighens up a holiday party, bring a healthy option to those trying to maintain balance in their nutrition, and becomes a great conversation starter at a party.

Greek Yogurt Ranch Dip:
1 cup plain Greek Yogurt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dried dill
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
Optional: Chives, salt, Worcestershire Sauce

WinteryWonderland Soup! Tofu Misu Soup!

Not only is it winter time, but it’s snowy here in Colorado! I have been craving some easy, quick hot soups that don’t come from a can or packet. Plus, I have been working on getting at lease one vegan mean in per day as I try to consume 50/50 animal and vegan proteins each day for digestive reasons.

After traveling to Asia last month, I have been obsessed with the idea of trying different ways of misu and different ways of tofu. I had all the ingredients on hand for this recipe and it just happened to turn out perfectly.

To begin, have two pans ready: a stir fry type pan and a stock pot. In each pan, heat about 1 tsp of coconut oil. In the stir fry pan, leave it on low heat and add your cubed tofu. Cover it and let it is sit. In your stock pot, allow the coconut oil to heat before adding your diced garlic. Let the garlic sizzle just enough to create a garlic aroma in your kitchen. Now, add your onion. Let those three ingredients heat together bringing their magic together. These three ingredients alone are very dense in vitamins and minerals that help boost our immune system. while these three ingredients are cooking together, occasionally check and stir your tofu. It doesn’t have to cook, as it will cook later in the soup.

After these three ingredients have heated, caramelized a little bit and smell amazing, turn your heat to very low heat. Add your vegetable broth. Cover pot and let sit for about 5 minutes while the broth absorbs the flavors and it simmers. After five minutes, add your spinach. Again, let sit another five minutes allowing the spinach to wilt and absorb the broth and flavors. After those five minutes go by, transfer your tofu from the stir fry pan to the stock pot pan. Now you have coconut oil, garlic, onion, veggie broth, spinach, and tofu in the stock pot. This is when you add your water and misu paste. These are your last additions.

Now, cover the pot and let sit on simmer for at least another 15 minutes for everything to heat together and absorb all the flavors. When ready, serve 1-2 cups per bowl and enjoy.

Tofu Misu Soup:

2tsp coconut oil
2 garlic cloves – diced
1 large onion – diced
1 full bag of baby spinach
32 ounces vegetable broth
32 ounces water
1 package of firm tofu – cut/cube it in sizes you like
2 tsp misu paste – white or red misu paste is fine