Tuesday, September 16, 2014

First Half Marathon: 6 Weeks to go

I don't like the look of that title... "6 Weeks" it seems so short! Someone tell me where the time went?

All good runners have a training plan (so I have been told), but being the over prepared person that I am I have 2 training plans. One that isn't to hard, so when I have my off days (or weeks) I can at least feel good about what I have done. And the oh so impossible training plan that has made me feel like I need to step up my game and get a move on! Either way I feel good that I at least have a plan.

Half marathons seemed so daunting when I first started running, but now I have a feeling of excitement and mystery that surrounds it. Will I be able to do it? How will I feel? Will I want to do another?

My current mystery that needs solving is what to do about water and fuel mid run? Do I buy those fanny pack looking water bottle holder things? (yep that is my fancy wording for them) 

But I hate extra 'stuff' on me! I want to be as free as possible and the less weight the better. The runners in Roman times ran naked, I'm not saying I want to, but I totally understand why they did!

Or what about the water bottles (that look like they are going to school) with a backpack you hold on to? Can I handle holding onto a water bottle for 13 miles? Pros? Cons? I'd love some others to weigh in on this.

My last long run I brought a bottle of water with me and started my run. It quickly found a home among the trees before the 1mile mark. Don't worry I looped around and picked it back up on my run back. But that made me really think... what am I going to do??

First world runner problems..... 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Review of The VB6 Cookbook by Mark Bittman

The VB6 Cookbook: More than 350 Recipes for Healthy Vegan Meals All Day and Delicious Flexitarian Dinners at Night

3 out of 5 spoons


Let me say first off that I am a sucker for free anything but, that I can and will be critical when asked my opinion of something. So here goes!!

I had never heard of the VB6 book before let alone the cookbook, so this was a totally new and fresh thing for me to read. I loved the pictures and the flexibility of this book. He lets you know how to make the dishes in there with so many variations that this book could be kept for a long time to come and never repeat the same dish twice. I really enjoyed the 28 day menu he puts in there, I think that is perfect for the 'want to be' vegan. It gives so many options, yet provides a ready to go menu for those who are busy. (Like us moms..)  I would highly recommend this book for those that want to become vegan, it provides a nice 'soft' introduction to vegan life.

Another feature I liked was in the front pages of the book where he breaks down vegetables, fruit, grains, oils etc.. and teaches you 'What They Are', 'Best Time of Year', 'How to Store', 'Best Ways to Prepare', 'Cooking Times' and 'How to Store'. I honestly learned a lot!!! That part alone had me hooked. 

The Recipes:

I did a weeks worth of items from this book and took them from all parts of it too so there was a fair review. While we liked the ideas of the food when it came down to it they had a 'Eh' taste about most of them and needed something extra for the flavor department. I had to jazz up the ones I made with either spices, tofu or salsa. I will post my favorite recipes here on the blog later on. 

The cookie recipe I made from the book: 'Decadent Oatmeal Cookies'. Were good but, a bit to much in the liquid department. More flower next time Mark... 

The biggest issue I had with the book was the lack of vegan recipes in he dinner section. Yes I know this book was all about being vegan until 6pm so you are saying "Duh!!" 
But, I liked how he tried in some recipes to make the suggestion on how to make them vegan, still it was hard when the main ingredient was muscles or salmon. "Skip that one, and that one..."
I would not have personally bought the book because of that. In this house the big meals are dinner so that whole back part of the book was useless to me. And while he had a nice little box on 'To make dinners vegan'. I need recipes people! I can't create!! That is not a strong suit of mine!! Give me step by step and I got it.

The portion sizes seemed to be a bit off too. I made dishes that said 'Serves 4' and my husband and I would eat it all and still be hungry. So not sure what was going on there...

Pros: Nice pictures, healthy recipes, great teaching tool in the front, the variety of variations
Cons: Not enough vegan recipes for dinner, the portion sizes were off

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. But the opinions were all mine.