Pretty Marvelous for a Monday {MIMM}

Four day weekends need to start happening every weekend. Three day school/work weeks? I can roll with that.

(Thanks Katie!)

Mondays are pretty marvelous when they don’t involve any responsibilities. Can this happen more often?

Marvelous is… lots of good coffee.

caribou coffee larry's beans

Caribou and Larry’s Beans. Basically the epitome of coffee glory.

I’m going to get design nerdy for a second and confess my love for Caribou Coffee’s new branding and marketing. The design is 100x better than their previous design and such a neat concept. I’m also loving the new logo and the fact they hid a coffee bean in the moose.

Marvelous is… browsing Barnes & Noble on rainy days, and snagging some fun reads.

barnes and noble books runner's world pilates anatomy

So excited to get my anatomy learning on! I don’t care how nerdy that sounds.

Marvelous is… spending the afternoon browsing Whole Foods and REI. They finally built an REI in my town earlier this year and I just now got the chance to go. I spent a good 20 minutes lusting over beautiful new workout clothes I can’t afford. One day…

Marvelous is… optimistic purchases.

running fuel honey stingers and clif shot gel

Despite this tendonitis, I’m still hopeful a spring half marathon is going to happen (fingers crossed!). I haven’t experimented with mid-run fueling and the honey stingers were on sale so I picked up a pack along with Clif Shot gel. Let’s hope I get to use them!

Marvelous is… Best Body Bootcamp. Today was the first day and the workout was awesome. A full body strength workout that made my muscles cry a little. Love it. And I’m already learning lots of new exercises that I’m excited to incorporate into my routine even when bootcamp is over.

Marvelous is… progress on my research paper. 2/10 pages done! Too bad it’s due Wednesday. Ah procrastination, we meet again.

Marvelous is… sushi. Enough said.

avocado cucumber sushi roll

Bonus of being a vegetarian? I’m not sketched out by cheap sushi. $3.50 for that sucker.

Marvelous is… Mediterranean food! Dropping my brother off at college means another lunch at the Mediterranean Deli, and I am not complaining one bit. So. Dang. Good.

mediterranean food

 

Clockwise starting under the pita: Eggplant and squash stew (so good), sauteed eggplant and grilled veggies.

I’m sure there are plenty of other really delicious restaurants in Chapel Hill that we are missing out on, but I don’t even care because the food here is that good. Plus they have gluten-free pita bread and I don’t think there is much that beats that.

Marvelous is… that kitty in the window.

chapel hill bookstore cat

Marvelous is… running! I did 2 very cautious and slow miles on the treadmill today. There’s still a little pain but my knee is feeling much better. I’m hoping to slowly work my mileage back up (with lots of rest, ice, anti-inflammatories, stretching and EMS therapy) over the next couple weeks. I’ve still got my eyes on the Tar Heel 10-miler in 3 weeks, but I’m taking things one step at a time. I’m not about to get re-injured.

Marvelous is… old lady Easter candy.

ginger chews

 

I stopped getting an Easter basket a long time ago (though I still ask for one every year because I’m just a kid in a 21 year old’s body) my brother and I pestered my mom into buying us some candy at Trader Joe’s. I think it officially means I’m old when this is the candy I pick out. And the bag is empty because I finished it in 2 days. You could say I like ginger a little bit.

Marvelous is… spring time temperatures and flowers. Please don’t go away!

daffodil

 

Marvelous is… spending home quality time with the family. I don’t think I’ll ever stop enjoying that.

What made your Monday marvelous?

Do you like sushi? I love it but my mom isn’t a fan, she says it needs more ketchup :)

Do you still get an Easter basket? Or do you give them? 

Lessons Learned from 40 Days Without Sweets

For Lent this year I gave up sweets. Some people thought I was crazy for doing this, and maybe I was a little. I have the biggest sweet tooth, and absolutely no control around sweets, so I wanted to put myself up for the challenge. And you know what, I did it.

I think one of the hardest things was deciding what was considered a sweet. Obviously cake, ice cream, candy, cookies, and brownies all fell into that catergory. But what about muffins or scones or chocolate chip granola bars? My intention wasn’t to give up sugar, so where do you draw the line? For me I avoided anything that could be eaten as a dessert, and for my own sanity I didn’t count protein bars as sweets (I had to be able to have a little something). I did stay away from the chocolate-coated, candy bar-like ones and stuck bars with natural ingredients.

My other challenges were stress eating. The semester has been a crazy one for me, and there were bad days where I would have given anything for a chocolate chip cookie. But I reminded myself that giving into that temptation would only make me feel worse in the long run.

So here’s what I learned from 40 days without sweets:

  1. I don’t need them. Seriously, I feel much better without them. My diet has been much more focused on whole, clean foods and I don’t feel so controlled by a pan of fresh-baked cookies
  2. There are a lot of better options for satisfying that post-meal sugar craving. I had days where I just was NOT going to be satisfied without a small sweet snack after dinner, this forced me to get pretty creative. I mixed unsweetened cocoa powder into more things than I probably should have (oatmeal, cottage cheese, sweet potatoes – surprisingly good, don’t knock it). I also turned to things like fruit, yogurt, and granola bars to help satisfy this craving, and they worked. I haven’t kicked the post-dinner sweet treat habit yet, but now a banana or cup of Chobani is all I need.
  3. The longer you go without sweets, the less appealing the are. By the end of Lent I wasn’t even looking forward to eating sweets. I really don’t want them that much anymore. Sure sometimes cravings hit, but they are scarcer and wimpier than they once were.
  4. I CAN do it. This was the most important thing I learned. I’ve struggled with getting my sweet tooth under control for a longgggg time, and I’m proud of myself for sticking with this.
Don’t think I celebrated Easter without chocolate though!
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So. Good. Betty Crocker makes some banging gluten-free brownies.

Overall I really enjoyed this challenge, and it’s something I honestly want to stick to. Not to never have a sweet again, but to save them for special occasions (like the 21st birthday I have coming up in 8 days!) and not just eating a cookie because I’ve had a bad day. I’m in a really good place right now in regards to my sugar cravings and I want to stay there.

Happy Easter every one!

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