Staying Active and Eating Well on Vacation

Staying Active and Eating Well on Vacation. Warning: this is a long post. 

This time last week, I was in the heart of my vacation in Bar Harbor, Maine. It was amazing. Everything about the vacation fit me and my boyfriend, Chris, so well — the food, the atmosphere, the views, the activities. Ah, the food… one of the biggest stressors pre and post any vacation is usually food or the aftermath of the food. So how do we enjoy our vacations, eat right for our bodies and enjoy the food of the vacation all at the same time? Easy in theory but more difficult in practice — plan, plan, plan. And have self-control. If you plan right and have some willpower, you can stay in control and have a deliciously balanced vacation. Other than securing our ferry and motel, the one and only thing I planned for was eating. More on that in a bit. First, you have to plan and make time for exercise.

Staying Active

Depending on your vacation, you may not even need to carve out time for this, but if your vacation is going to include a lot of beach or poolside lounging, wake up a little earlier and fit in a workout. I don’t care if it’s for 20-30 minutes. Do it. You can do a HIIT workout consisting of a mixture of your favorite exercises or follow the 10 minute total body workout I put together. Warm up by doing some light low-impact moves like easy side shuffles with a punch, light jumping jacks, light squats or going for a 10 minute walk. Then do a 10-15 minute HIIT session and cool down by walking around for another few minutes and stretching. After 30 minutes, you’re done and can go have breakfast with your family. Wherever you are staying, have bananas or some other kind of fruit with you so that upon rising you can have 1/2 a banana or a few pieces of another fruit, drink a cup of water and get to your workout. Always warm up for 5-10 minutes before your workout. If your hotel as a gym, then get down there and do something you like for 30 minutes. Once you’re up, you’ll realize how happy you are that you are making the time to do this and you’ll be more likely to make good decisions for the rest of the day. I strongly believe that laziness fuels weakness and excuses. Those 30 minutes are worth so much more than the 1 minute of dread it takes for you to turn your alarm off and actually pull yourself up out of bed. Trust me. If you have an active trip ahead of you, like I did, you won’t even need to carve out time for a workout.

We didn’t plan much ahead of time regarding activities and sites, which we were both really happy about by the end of the trip. Everything worked out so organically, it served as our relaxation on the trip. Other than that, we were pretty exhausted. We hiked every day for at least 2-3 hours and were typically out and about from 10:30 am-5:00 pm; on our last day we were hiking by 7:45 am and returned back for showers before dinner at 6:00 pm. Our active days made us feel strong and good. We both felt like we got our workout in, so we didn’t feel the need to set aside time for that. This helped us out a lot because we got to workout while having fun, being adventurous and taking in some incredible views. Just look at this:

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Hiking for 2 hours while looking at scenery like this? No problem. In case you’re interested, I took these images in Acadia National Park while hiking. The first image is from hiking the cliffside off of Sand Beach, and the second image is on the Carriage Road after we hiked 4.7 miles on the road and around Witch Pond. On the loop back, we came to a stone bridge and found a little path off to the side that led to the stream below. This was the view of the bridge from below:

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Our oceanside trail off of Sand beach was somewhere between 2-3 miles and by far our favorite trek. The cliffside was breathtaking. If you want info on Bar Harbor and Acadia, e-mail me and I can give you tips for spots to hit in the park and restaurants to eat in town! Speaking of restaurants and eating, let’s get to the food planning. Remember, we’ve already established that you are getting in some exercise on your vacation, whether it be established workouts or other activity like hiking. Now, how to plan your meals.

Eating Well

First, you have to be prepared for your trip. Chris and I had a 9 hour trek to Bar Harbor from Long Island. This was the distance we covered:

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So naturally, I prepared by food shopping before we left. I bought food for us to have in the car and in the room during our stay in Bar Harbor. Our motel had a complimentary continental breakfast, which we all know can be hard to navigate, so I thought about how to deal with that when I saw what was there. I figured there are had to be something we could eat there, so I didn’t stress too much about it. But I made sure I had bananas and granola with us so we could have cereal with banana slices just incase. This is what I bought for our trip:

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Step 1: Food Shopping — bring healthy options with you for the car, the room and snacks for your active days.

  • Organic Celery
  • Pure Coconut Water
  • Bananas
  • Granola
  • Organic Yogurt Tubes (2 boxes of 8)
  • A Brita water bottle with a filter
  • Enjoy Life Chocolate Chunks
  • Pistachios
  • Almonds
  • Organic Raisins
  • Organic Grapes

I probably should have gotten 2 bottles of the coconut water, we drank that fast. And some melon would have been good too, but we did well. I also bought organic carrots but they ended up going bad, so I ditched them. We also had a box of Quest bars, chocolate peanut butter flavor (no sucralose), that were great for after our hikes. We always ate a meal before we got in the car. Don’t start your trip off hungry. In the car, I made a trail mix with the pistachios, chocolate and almonds that tasted amazing and was great for filling us up. Chris left this trip with a new found love for Zico coconut water and Enjoy Life chocolate. He declared that the ice-cold coconut water was the best thing he’s ever had, haha. Dramatic, maybe, but it is pretty great. In the car, each of us also had a banana, a yogurt or two, some grapes, celery and a Quest bar (1 full one on the way there, half on the ride home). These things were great to pick on because they were satisfying and refreshing. We didn’t feel gross after being in the car munching on junk.

Step 2: Meal Planning — choose 1 meal a day to have what you want and have dessert half of the time.

This was a system that also happened organically. I did not plan for this, it just happened as I tried to be systematic and smart with my food choices. The night we got to Maine, it was 9:30 pm and we had been traveling all day. I had a healthy breakfast and lunch, with those healthy snacks along the way. We hadn’t eaten a real meal in roughly 10 hours. So I decided, “Tonight, I am eating whatever I want.” Before leaving for our trip, I had worked out for 10 days straight and ate very clean. I felt zero guilt about diving into whatever I wanted that first night. I was starving and my body was in good shape. This wasn’t going to kill me.

*Important: DO NOT STRESS. Stress will do more harm than good. If it’s going to stress you out, that is your que to skip it. 

That first night we shared mussels and tortilla chips with guacamole. Not too bad if you ask me. We didn’t go for anything deep fried or huge. For our meals, we both had lobster rolls. I was not leaving Maine without eating a lobster roll. End of story. So I ordered a lobster roll that came with a side of sweet potato fries and a pickle. I also had a margarita with several glasses of water. For dessert, Chris got an ice cream cone and I got gelato. Mine was seriously an amount for a 6 year old. It was a single scoop of chocolate-hazelnut alongside a single scoop of coconut. Naturally, I had some of Chris”s ice cream cone because it was huge. Counting that first night, we were traveling and vacationing for 6 days. I decided that I was going to have dessert for the first 3 nights and skip it the last 2 nights and the day we traveled back home. I did this because we had a very active trip and I wanted to return feeling the best I could — I could hike off that dessert throughout the trip, right? Yeah.

So you’re only having dessert half the time. A 6 day vacation  = 3 nights of dessert. How to have dessert without going overboard:

  1. Choose something you REALLY want. That first night, I gasped a little bit seeing the gelato. I love ice cream, but I LOVE gelato. So I got gelato. It was a small amount, so a few licks of Chris’s ice cream didn’t freak me out.
  2. Don’t be afraid to share. Our second night, Chris and I shared desserts. We ordered a blueberry apple crisp (something that also wasn’t big at all) and a chocolate mousse. We shared both, giving each of us a reasonable portion of dessert while getting twice the flavor.
  3. Make it count. This is really just emphasizing the importance of getting what you want. Getting what you absolutely love and want one night will be so much more satisfying than eating dessert for 5 nights. More satisfaction and less guilt. My 3rd and final night for dessert, I got a medium sized vanilla soft-serve ice cream in a cone dipped in dark chocolate. This is my simple dessert dream come true. I was so delighted and satisfied with this, opting out of dessert for the next 3 days didn’t phase me at all. Seriously.

Your dessert tactic is under control. Now let’s focus on those meals.

If you can, stick to 3 square meals as best as you can. Chris and I always had breakfast and dinner. We had 4 full days in Maine. We went out for lunch twice and had a make-shift lunch out of the foods I brought with us twice. The two days we had a make-shift lunch, we also had a small snack between lunch and dinner. Remember, we were also hiking for hours and out all day. With this system, I chose 1 meal a day to eat whatever I wanted that would typically be not 100% healthy. That doesn’t mean I lost all control and ate some deep fried battered meal. No. I just didn’t think about it as much once a day.

This is how it generally worked:

1. Breakfast: continental breakfast of hard-boiled eggs, 2 bananas and granola cereal. Continental #1 = 4 hard-boiled eggs and 2 bananas; Continental #2 and #3 = 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 banana, and granola cereal with 1 chopped banana. Out to breakfast 1 and 2 = Vegan Oatmeal Apple Spice Pancakes:

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This was 2 vegan oatmeal pancakes topped with fresh applesauce and chopped walnuts. No butter and no syrup. I never put either on my pancakes when I’m at a restaurant because it’s not the kind I would have at home. I opt for grass-fed butter and 100% pure maple syrup. I don’t trust the butter or syrup at restaurants, so I skip it. Plus, I didn’t need it with these pancakes thanks to the applesauce.

2. Lunch: we went out to lunch twice. Lunch out #1 = salad and a crab wrap (after continental breakfast #1). I got a salad as an appetizer a lot. I wanted to have some crab while I was in Maine but didn’t want another buttery roll, so I went with a wrap. It was a wrap consisting of lettuce and a light crab salad with a side of potato salad. I actually gave some to Chris. It also came with a kale leaf and lemon, so I drizzled some lemon on the kale and put a scoop of the potato salad inside to make another mini wrap. Delicious. Lunch out #2 = grilled halibut with vegetables and lobster mashed potatoes (after an extremely early morning, hiking, pancakes, mini golf, walking and preparing for a second hike).

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This was awesome. We started with steamed clams and a beautiful salad that was 1/2 an avocado filled with crab salad on a bed of greens. Then this was topped with almond butter, which was actually real butter with slivered almonds atop a grilled slice of pineapple. See how deliciously you can eat without feeling guilty? Planning rocks. Make-shift lunch consisted of a Quest bar, grapes and celery. We then would snack on the trail mix I made and have a yogurt. One day we actually went to an all-natural food shop and got green smoothies! That served as our snack instead of the trail mix that day.

3. Dinner: I had 4 dinners in Maine after our first night with the lobster rolls. Dinner #1 = Salmon, wild rice and asparagus.

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This was so filling and nutritious. On top of the salmon is a kalamata olive salsa. Yum. Before this we started with mussels again. I love mussels, and I had to get them once or twice while in Maine. Dinner #2 = a grilled veggie and hummus whole wheat wrap with chicken. This meal was our cheap meal, so I didn’t get seafood. This was also our night to let loose a bit. We started with quinoa tabbouleh, very healthy, and nachos — not healthy. I got my wrap and my final dessert that night. Dinner #3 and #4 = LOBSTER. Were you waiting for this? Saying what is wrong with this girl not getting fresh lobster in Maine? I spent the last 2 nights eating a 2 lb. lobster. I hadn’t had a fresh lobster in 10 years. Crazy, I know. I didn’t get any special lobster dinner with 3 courses. I started with a salad and then got a simple lobster dinner consisting of a 2 lb. lobster, 1/2 an ear of corn and a leaf of kale. I also forgot to take a picture of my lobster. Both times.

I was just so excited to eat it, I completely forgot. Which I’m going to say is a good thing. I was having a nice dinner with my boyfriend, sitting outside by the water on our last night with my heart set on snapping a picture beforehand. Instead, I completely forgot. We looked at the water, talked and ate delicious food. I’m happy I forgot to take a picture. I think it means more that I forgot. Out of all the times we ate, I only remembered to take a picture 3 times. Meaning, I was having such a great time in the present that I completely forgot to snap a picture for this blog. And that makes me happy. Which brings me to my third and final point…

Be happy and relax.

Don’t stress. This will do more harm than good and may even make you more inclined to make unhealthy choices. I know this post was very long and not so much a step-by-step guide, but I wanted it to be integrative. I want you to see how I ate amazing food, ate what I wanted but also fit in healthy options while I was on vacation. I hope the way I laid it out makes sense so that you can use it as a guide for when you go on your own vacation. There really are only a few simple rules to follow:

  1. Make sure you exercise every day.
  2. Eat dessert only half the time and make it count, while not going overboard.
  3. Choose 1 meal a day to loosen the strains; best to choose either lunch or dinner.
  4. Aim to eat 3-4 times a day: 3 square meals or 2 larger meals (breakfast and dinner) with 2 smaller ones in between.

One last point… drinks!

Have you been wondering about cocktails and drinks? I am not a regular or heavy drinker, so this comes easier to me. I have 1 drink a day while on vacation. My last day I had 2 but they were far apart. I chose to have 1 margarita each night with my dinner. Actually, one night I had wine instead of a margarita and it made me so much more dehydrated, so I stuck to margaritas after feeling that. On my last day I had 1 margarita with lunch and 1 with dinner. I could have skipped the one at lunch because I didn’t feel so great at the beginning of our second hike with that in my system and the sun beating down on me. So ladies, that’s how I do it — 1 or 2 a day. If you want more, I would say swap a dessert for a drink one night. Therefore, typically go with 1 or 2 drinks or skip dessert and have a 3rd. If you are going with 3, I would say have 1 with your lunch and your other 2 with dinner. I wouldn’t suggest drinking more than that. But that’s me. It’s up to you. This system also worked with Chris. He typically had 2 beers with dinner, and he only drank twice at lunch. One day he had 1 and felt fine, the final day he had 3 at lunch and did not feel so good, haha. So remember, less is more. You will enjoy it without feeling like crap. You too, guys. For guys, I suggest 1 beer if you go out to lunch and then 2 at dinner, tops. 

These guidelines should prevent you from overdoing it. To help yourself out even more, drink lots of cold filtered water and try to get some citrus or mint water if you can. Our continental breakfast had fresh citrus water with orange and lemon. I have a mint plant and should have brought some with us, but I’ve just been having it since I’ve been home. Mint is great for fighting cravings and feeling light and refreshed. Coconut water is great for when you’re outside a lot, too. Hydrate and replenish.

Tomorrow I will be posting “How to Recover from Vacation.” This will be a full guide on how to eat, drink and work your way back into your routine and normal size. If you come back from vacation weighing a little more than usual, it’s likely just water weight. In 2-3 days, you can be back to normal. Trust me. It’s best to avoid the scale immediately after vacation and traveling. Give your body 3 days to adjust and get back into the swing of things. The important thing is to enjoy your vacation. Be smart, well planned and you’ll have nothing to fear.

Good food. Good tips. Good moves. Good for you.

xo Kim, Running on Good

Snack Attack! Part One: Out and About

Welcome to a two part series that I’m calling, ‘SNACK ATTACK!’ We’ve all been there… you’re out running errands, shopping, shuffling between classes or meetings, doing whatever it is that needs to get done that day and BAM–a snack attack! You’re hungry, you have no food with you (sometimes it’s smart to carry a snack in your bag), and you need to eat before you get too hungry. Nobody wants to end up in that starvation state where you’d eat anything and everything — that is just a recipe for disaster, and we’ve all been there too. So let’s avoid that.

I’m going to classify the solution to these snack attacks in two different ways: (1) Out and About — snacks you can find WHILE you are out running about town and (2) Home Solutions — snacks you can prepare and eat at home OR prepare at home and take with you. Some of these will have a little bit of overlap, but that’s good! Versatility makes our lives easier. So let’s get started!

Out and About: snacks you can find in stores/at shops and trust!

1) The classic food + coffee combo:

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Sometimes we just need a little coffee or tea. I’m all for coffee and tea, just never too much. I go with a cup or two a day, no more. Caffeine-free herbal tea is the exception, of course. Starbucks is actually a great place to get a snack. They have quite a few options that are pretty smart choices, so never fear walking into a Starbucks — just have your self control in check and your eyes on the labels. I like to go for a blonde roast coffee or herbal tea and a KIND bar. KIND bars are awesome on so many levels: they are all natural, nonGMO, gluten and soy free, delicious, and filled with healthy fats that will keep you satisfied. Take a peak at the label and yes, you’ll see there’s a decent amount of fat, but it’s healthy fat! And when you are having a snack to satisfy hunger, you need that fat. Eating healthy fat = feeling satisfied. Some KIND bars also have a decent amount of protein and very low sugar count — score. Look for the bars labeled +PROTEIN or ONLY 5g SUGAR.

On the coffee end… go black or with a splash of milk  (not ideal but a splash won’t kill you) and NO artificial sweeteners. I use organic whole milk at home and when it’s available, but when I’m out I’ll go for skim because the milk is probably not organic and will therefore contain some toxins — toxins are stored in the fat. Therefore, I get skim which = no fat & less toxins. Sugar isn’t ideal either. If you can go without sweeteners, then do it. Otherwise, try to have some organic stevia on hand so you can sprinkle some in if you need. Don’t let those colorful packets tempt you. And that “[stuff] in the Raw” is not so raw. Don’t buy it.

2) Keeping the healthy fat train rolling…

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^ More healthy fats to keep you satisfied — nuts and seeds! (Fun fact: Brazil nuts and Hazel nuts are actually seeds) Whether you have a peanut or nut allergy or neither, you can make this work! There are many varieties to choose from. If you are allergic to peanuts and/or nuts, look for seeds and check to see if they were made in a nut-free facility. Look for whole natural and/or organic nuts and seeds with NO additives. That means no added oils or other ingredients. I like to go with either raw, roasted unsalted, or roasted with sea salt. I mix it up. But never anything with tons of salt and/or extra oils. Just read the label and make sure that what you see is what you get. For instance: (1) A bag of cashews, ingredients = raw cashews; (2) A bag of almonds, ingredients = raw or roasted almonds; (3) A bag of shelled pistachios [a favorite of mine], ingredients = pistachios and salt. As for seeds, I love sunflower and pumpkin.

3)  A sweet treat that won’t leave you basking in guilt: Emmy’s Macaroons

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These macaroons are delicious and sweet! They are sure to satisfy ANY sweet tooth or craving. They are made with quality ingredients, are nonGMO, vegan, raw, and gluten free. You can find them in so many stores! I found these in my local health market, Mrs. Green’s. Other flavors include, but are not limited to, dark cacao, lemon ginger, and mint chip. Another great thing? This WHOLE package–yes that means THREE macaroons–is only 180 calories. I was reading the labels of the others and believe the cacao package is only 150 calories for the whole thing! Figure friendly, delicious, and wholesome. Heaven in a little bag. So even when you’re treating yourself, it is so easy to keep your body running on good while satisfying that sweet tooth.

4) A granola bar that actually satisfies you, made with the BEST ingredients.

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These granola bars have been a lifesaver for me over the past few months since I discovered them. Introducing, Lola Granola! About the ingredients:

  • Gluten, dairy, soy and GMO free
  • All natural fiber, protein, and OMEGA 3s
  • Low in sodium
  • Locally sourced ingredients
  • Made with 8 main ingredients in their most natural form + some dried fruit and nuts, depending on the flavor
  • NO artificial sweeteners, added colors, high fructose corn syrup, canola or soybean oil
  • Over 50% organic

These bars are just plain awesome. When I’m home, I like to toast them in the toaster and top with nut butter + cinnamon. Delicious.

5) Real granola… pure and simple — Purely Elizabeth

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This is hands down the BEST tasting granola I have ever had. And it is made with the BEST ingredients — probably why it tastes so amazing. On the website you can purchase: (view and shop here)

  1. Ancient Grain Oatmeal + Hot Cereal
  2. Ancient Grain Granola
  3. Cookie Mixes
  4. Pancake Mix
  5. Ancient Granola Minis (great for stocking in your bag!)
  6. Gift Samplers — great idea for a foodie!

About the ingredients:

  • All natural foods made with ancient grains + superfood seeds
  • Free of refined sugar (uses organic coconut palm sugar — low glycemic index!)
  • Certified gluten free, vegan, organic and non-GMO verified
  • NO artificial flavors, colors, sweeteners, preservatives or GMOs

Seriously, Pure Elizabeth products are downright delicious. Samplers are available online for $30-40! Very affordable.

6) Bars and Bites: Power Snacks and Raw Revolution Bars

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These Power Snacks by Navitas Naturals are soo good and so easy. You can grab a bag, have a few, and save the rest. They are organic, loaded with superfoods, and come in these flavors: blueberry hemp, cacao goji, citrus chia, coffee cacao, and lemon goldenberry.

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Raw Revolutions bars are also awesome and delicious. They are organic, non-GMO, vegan, gluten free, dairy free and kosher. They have tons of flavors that include: chocolate coconut bliss, almond butter cup, cherry chocolate chunk, spirulina dream, heavenly hazelnut chocolate, golden cashew — some of my faves — and more! They are also available in mini and full size, which is really convenient.

7) Juices and Smoothies: find a local health cafe!

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Local health cafes that provide fresh smoothies and juices are one of the best things to take advantage of. I love going to my local health cafe and grabbing a green smoothie or a juice when I’m on the go.

You may also find additional treats there like salads, soups, yogurt + granola, and healthy baked goods like this $2 Banana Flax Muffin Top (organic, gluten free, no refined sugar) that I found at my local cafe (+ it came with a free cup of organic coffee!)

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Yum!

8) In NYC? Visit Organic Avenue!

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I recently got the chance to stop into an Organic Avenue shop when I was in the city. I loved it. I got a snack (pictured above) and then dinner later on (a whole wheat veggie and hummus wrap — $8 + roasted brussels sprouts — $4). They have so many amazing options at great prices! They also sell Emmy’s Macaroons 🙂 and other delicious treats in addition to their food (yogurt, wraps, salads, and veggies) and drinks (matcha, juices, mylks and smoothies).

This yogurt was awesome. Not too sweet, but an amazing flavor. It’s made with coconut meat, coconut water, coconut sugar, vanilla powder and probiotics. And it tastes so good. This matcha chia glo drink is also amazing. If you’ve ever had a Starbucks Green Tea Frappe, this tastes very similar. But better. And is 100 times better for your health. I need to buy some matcha so I can make something like this at home!

This place is great if you want something to eat or drink that’s amazing for your health, especially if you don’t have a lot of money on you. And they are spread ALL over the city.

9) In a pre-workout bind? Grab a Chia Bar by Health Warrior!

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Made with fruit and chia seeds, this stuff is great pre-workout. Full size and minis are available. Just like me, the founders of this company discovered the power of the chia seed through the phenomenal book, Born to Run, by Chistopher McDougall. Check out this page for some amazing information about the chia seed and grab a bar.

10) Simple Supermarket Snags: yogurt, veggies, and fruit!

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Supermarkets are everywhere, and it may not occur to you, but they are great places to grab a quick snack. You don’t have to do a full food shop stop just because you are entering a supermarket. Get a snack and get out. Grab 1 yogurt (this wallaby organic is my favorite) and some packaged fresh fruit or a veggie like sugar snap peas. Easy, quick, and fresh! If it’s nice outside, sit outside and enjoy your snack in the sunshine! If not, you can take a few relaxing minutes and enjoy it in the car (parked, not while driving).

11) Indulgent Fuel: Nibmor Organic Chocolate squares and Larabar

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I love these two choices when I need something a little chocolatey. The Nibmor squares are perfect, single serving doses of dark chocolate — and this mint flavor is heavenly. Larabars are another favorite and come in delectable flavors like this chocolate coconut chew, peanut butter chocolate cup, and pecan pie (a fall favorite). Check out all their amazing flavors here (like banana bread, chocolate chip brownie, chocolate chip cookie dough, cashew cookie, and more). I’ll take one of each, please.

The great thing about Larabar and these flavors? Your taste buds are happy and you are eating real whole foods. Larabars are made with a blend of unsweetened fruits (especially dates), nuts and spices — they never have more than 9 ingredients. Fair trade, lots of organic ingredients + gluten-soy-and dairy free, these are bars you can feel good about eating.

That’s a wrap! Hope you find this useful when you’re on the run and in need of a snack. No matter what you’re doing, just keep running on good 🙂 xox

 

 

14 FREE Smoothie and Nutribullet Recipes!

Here we are! A post dedicated to smoothie and Nutribullet nutriblast recipes. The nutribullet does come with its own recipe book, but these are ones that I put together using what I had on hand. I hope this post inspires you to realize that you DON’T need a recipe for everything. Use what you have on hand, but stick to some basic smoothie/nutribullet building guidelines; you’ll figure it out as you go and these recipes will guide you along the way. I think I did enough introduction in the last post, so let’s just get down to it.

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1. The Ultimate Green Smoothie

  • Almond milk, about 2/3 cup (I use unsweetened)
  • Coconut milk, about 2/3 cup (I use unsweetened)
  • Water, about 1 cup
  • Spinach,  1 big handful
  • Frozen Mango chunks, 2 handfuls
  • Golden Ground Flaxseed, 1 heaping tablespoon
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Protein (100% whey or other approved proteins preferred–in previous post)
  • 1/2 Avocado

*Note: I did not measure anything when I made this smoothie, so I gave my best estimate. This was also made in a standard blender. Add more water if you would like it to be less thick.

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2. Chocolate Avocado Smoothie

  • 1 cup unsweetened Coconut Milk
  • 1 cup unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1 scoop Chocolate protein (or other approved protein, any flavor)
  • 2 tbsp Golden Ground Flaxseed
  • 1/2 Avocado

*Note: Lots of milk, I know. This was after a 6 mile run, so I wanted more of a protein drink than a typical smoothie. Since there is 2 cups of liquid, you could also throw in a banana if you’d like. Also made in a blender.

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3. Pina Colada Smoothie

  • 1 cup frozen Pineapple
  • 6 oz. Mango or Coconut yogurt
  • 1 cup unsweetened Coconut or Almond Milk

*Note: This smoothie was not post workout, just a snack. Use coconut for best pina colada flavor. Made in a standard blender.

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4. Pumpkin Pie Breakfast Smoothie

  • 2 ice cubes
  • 1 c unsweetened Almond Milk (est)
  • 1/8 c Rolled Oats (est)
  • 1 Banana
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice (as much as you like)
  • 1/8 c Pumpkin Puree (est)
  • 1 scoop French Vanilla Whey protein
  • a touch of Grade B Maple Syrup

*Note: I did not measure much for this smoothie, so the measurements for the milk, oats and pumpkin puree are an estimate. Add more or less of whatever you want to get the consistency you are aiming for. Made in a blender.

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5. Wheatgrass Smoothie

  • 1 c unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1 handful Baby Spinach
  • 1 packet of Amazing Grass Wheatgrass (or 1 small scoop)
  • 1 c frozen Strawberries (or any other frozen fruit you want)
  • 1 scoop Vanilla Whey protein
  • 1/2 Avocado

*Made in blender.

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6. Vanilla Coconut Smoothie (don’t let the color fool you; this baby is delicious!)

  • 2 ice cubes
  • 1 c unsweetened Almond Milk or Coconut Milk
  • 1 handful Baby Spinach
  • 3/4 c Blueberries
  • 2 tsp Golden Ground Flaxseed
  • 1 scoop French Vanilla protein
  • 1 tsp Coconut Oil or Coconut Butter

*Made in a blender and absolutely delicious!

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7. Tahitian Vanilla Nutriblast

  • Baby Spinach
  • 2 Celery stalks
  • frozen peaches, 5-7 cubes
  • 1 diced Pear (may not be able to fit it all in, I eat the leftovers)
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit protein
  • 1/4 Lemon
  • fill half way to the max line with Water
  • fill the rest with unsweetened Almond Milk

*Made in Nutribullet. Fill Nutribullet in this order; liquid always goes last!

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8. Very Berry Nutriblast 2 ways

Option 1:

  • Baby Spinach
  • 2 Celery stalks
  • small handful of Blueberries
  • frozen Peaches, small handful
  • 1 tbsp Goji berries
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit protein
  • some Water
  • fill to max line with unsweetened Almond Milk

Option 2:

  • Baby Spinach
  • 1 Banana
  • frozen Strawberries, small handful
  • 1 tbsp Goji berries
  • 1 tsp Maca powder
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit protein
  • Water to max line

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9. Green Citrus Nutriblast

  • Baby Spinach
  • 2 Celery stalks
  • frozen Peach slices, small handful
  • 1/2 Lemon
  • 1/2 Orange (eat the rest!)
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit protein
  • Water to max line

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10. Peanut Butter Banana Breakfast Nutriblast

  • Baby Spinach
  • 1 tbsp Golden Ground Flaxseed
  • 1 tbsp Coconut shreds
  • 1 tbsp organic Peanut Butter
  • 1 Banana
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit protein
  • fill 3/4 of the way to max line with unsweetened Almond Milk
  • fill the rest with plain Coconut Water

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11. Tootie-Fruity Nutriblast

  • Baby Spinach
  • Celery, 2 stalks
  • 1 Banana
  • frozen Peach slices, small handful
  • frozen Mixed Berries, small handful
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit protein
  • plain Coconut water / Water to the max line

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12. ‘All You Need’ Green Breakfast Nutriblast

  • Baby spinach
  • 1/4 c Rolled Oats
  • 1 tbs Golden Ground Flaxseed
  • 1 tbs Chia seeds
  • 1 tbs Coconut shreds
  • 1 Banana
  • 1 Orange
  • 4-5 Brazil Nuts
  • unsweetened Almond Milk to max line

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13. Raspberry Sorbet Probiotic Nutriblast (not the prettiest picture; on-the-go!)

  • frozen Mixed Berries, 1 big handful
  • 1 tsp Maca powder
  • about 1/4 grass-fed Coffee Kefir (delicious!!)
  • 1 unsweetened Almond Milk to max line

*Note: this was freakin’ AMAZING.

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14. NO JUICER NEEDED ‘JUICE’ SPECIAL: Nutribullet ‘Juice’

  • Baby Spinach, small handful
  • Romaine Lettuce, small handful
  • Baby Carrots, small handful
  • 1 full Orange
  • juice from 1 whole Lemon
  • Water to the max line

Whoa. I just gave you 14 RECIPES! I think I’ll be starting up a collection for an e-book. Get them here for free while you can! 🙂 Enjoy XOXO

The Ultimate Smoothie and Nutribullet Guide

I’ve recently had a few people ask me about juicers/blenders/the nutribullet because they are interested in making juices or smoothies and wanted to know what I recommend. Over anything else, I recommend the nutribullet.

A quick note about juicing: Juicing does have some really great health benefits, like fueling your body with micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and giving your digestive system a break. This is extremely helpful because our bodies expend A LOT of energy breaking down and digesting our food. Think about it. We generally eat 3 meals a day and maybe 1 or 2 snacks. That’s what I typically do, but it depends on the day, my workout, and how early I wake up. Regardless, we give our bodies a lot to digest EVERY single day. [Unless you fast, which is a whole different conversation so I’m going to sidestep that.] Juicing enables your body to receive nutrients, the kings and queens of nutrients, while eliminating a big chunk of the digestion process. You’re still putting something into your body, your stomach, and through your digestive system and it is in the most easily digested and absorbed form. That way, your body spends LESS time and energy digesting and MORE time healing. Those micronutrients–the vitamins and minerals–are passing easily through your system, being absorbed, and enabling your body to heal. THAT is why juicing is beneficial. If you really want to learn more about juicing, I HIGHLY recommend watching the film Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. In this film, Joe Cross went to an extreme, for sure. But he was in a very extreme and unique situation. What I love about this film is that is doesn’t only cover Joe’s journey, but two other people that tried juicing as well. One of those people is Phil. He was a truck driver in a very similar, almost exact in fact, situation as Joe. Phil started out with a 10 day juice fast and decided to extend it as time went on. He took it step by step. Another person was a woman who just did a 7 day juice fast. So if you see the appeal and are interested, you don’t have to go to extremes. You could try a 3 or 4 day juice fast, a 1 day, or just replace 1 meal or snack a day with a juice. Have your juice on an empty stomach and wait til your next meal to eat solid food. HOWEVER, If you are about to start a juice fast, please consult your physician first and make sure you are in good enough health to do so. I do enjoy juices from time to time, but I buy them at local organic cafes/juice bars. If you buy a juice in a store/market/cafe, make sure it is fresh and made on-site or organic and cold-pressed. I drink my juice on an empty stomach and use it in place of a snack. If you DO invest in a juicer and make your own at home, PLEASE save the pulp! Use that good stuff up! You could use the pulp of your greens to make a sauté or add the veggie and fruit pulp to muffins or bread! Just PLEASE do not throw it away! You will be throwing away fiber, nutrients, and food! And that shouldn’t go to waste.

Now onto the smoothies and nutriblasts (aka nutribullet smoothies).

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I used a standard blender from Walmart for years until I got my nutribullet, which was a Christmas gift–the gift that keeps on giving. The nutribullet is very affordable for what you get (It’s on sale a lot for $99 and you get the motor, 2 blades, 3 or 4 cups, tops, and a few books/guides). You really get a lot for your money, and I guarantee you will use it every single day. So, the nutribullet is my number ONE recommendation. However, if you are like me–usually broke or saving your money–a $15 Hamilton Beach blender from Walmart will be perfectly sufficient for your smoothie needs, there will just be some slight limitations but nothing detrimental. What are these limitations? Here’s the difference between a standard blender and a nutribullet (FYI: This does not apply to blenders like a Vitamix and other high performance blenders)

The Nutribullet vs a standard blender:

  • The nutribullet emulsifies EVERYTHING: I mean everything. It is all broken down: skins, nuts, seeds, etc. Meaning, you are left with a smoothie that gives you the benefit of a juice–a completely broken down drink that can be easily absorbed by the body. This includes ALL of the nutrients, including the fiber.
  • The blade design is unique, mixing and emulsifying everything top to bottom.
  • You can add vegetables, nuts, seeds, and superfoods that don’t break down as well in a standard blender: carrots, celery, lettuce, almond, flaxseeds, chia seeds, goji berries, etc.
  • Build your nutriblast: a handful of greens + close to the max line with fruit + top with superfoods and/or 1 scoop of protein + fill to the max line with choice of milk or water

It really breaks down to the break down, for two reasons: health and pleasure. Health–you are ingesting these foods in their most digestible form. Pleasure–you aren’t sipping on pulp and chunks of skin or seed… gross.

So with the nutribullet I would say mix to your heart’s content. But with a blender stick to these smoothie building principals:

  • Start with greens that are easily broken down, like baby spinach
  • Avoid using ice
  • ^ Use frozen fruit instead of ice
  • Avoid seeds like whole flaxseed, chia seed, oats or whole nuts
  • ^ use the ground versions of these foods: chia powder, ground flaxseed meals, nut butters, seed butters, oat flour, goji berry powder, maca root powder, etc.
  • Avoid hard-to-break-down veggies like carrots, broccoli, celery, etc. Anything you see getting stringy, chunky, or mealy
  • Stick to fruits that blend well: bananas, mango, berries, apple, pear, melon, grapes, anything that isn’t too stringy or seedy
  • ^ Avoid the more stringy, mealy, and seedy fruits like oranges, clementines, coconut, pomegranate and lemon (can use the juice for the citrus fruits)
  • Build your smoothie: a handful of spinach + 2 fruits + your choice of milk or water + a teaspoon of grounded superfood and/or a scoop protein powder

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*Note: I am very picky with protein powders. I only recommend using: 100% organic whey, like Tera’s Whey or OrganiGrowthHemp Protein; Perfect Fit Protein by Tone It Up, PlantFusion brand Protein OR Phood (all different links), Vega Protein Smoothie or Soy-Free Veg Protein Booster. Lots to choose from, take your pick! The PlantFusion Phood comes in vanilla and chocolate/caramel… yum. Other than superfoods and quality protein, I do not use supplements. Not even a multivitamin. “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” That’s what I live by.

Want to see some of my creations? Check out the smoothie section of my blog for all my smoothie-related posts. Here are some of my favorite smoothie posts:

  1.  14 Smoothie and Nutribullet Recipes
  2. Hemp Protein Smoothies — Chocolate and Pistachio
  3. Green Recovery Smoothies with Vega

Good food. Good tips. Good moves. Good for you.

xo Kim, Running on Good

P.S. If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy this post from my blogging friend, Ribas with Love: Detoxing and Anti-Inflammatory Juice! 

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Snack Attack! Crunchy Roasted Chickpeas

Who doesn’t love a good snack? A crazy person, that’s who. Snacking doesn’t have to detrimental to your health or weight. It CAN be. But it doesn’t HAVE to be. That’s where you come in. You control what you eat. And when you are well educated, prepared, determined and love what you are eating, you are good to go!

So one day, I decided to oven bake something that I love–chickpeas. I’ve done the homemade sweet potato chips (which I love), have yet to tackle the homemade kale chips (for no particular reason), and wanted to use something that I already had. Most of us always have oil and salt in the house, it’s the last ingredient that stumps us. I happened to have chickpeas in the pantry and gave it a whirl. It was magical. SO crunchy, SO satisfying, SO tasty. A perfect snack.

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How I made these babies:

  • Grease a pan with coconut oil
  • Toss chickpeas in any seasoning you want (I like Real Salt, chili powder, and garlic powder)
  • Bake at 400 degrees F for 45-60 minutes (I like them REALLY crunchy; I just tested them after 45 mins)

*You could also experiment at 425 F for 35-40 minutes if you’re impatient.

DONE! They are so easy, the hardest part is waiting for them to do done. Chickpeas are naturally low in fat and filled with protein & fiber. They’re also great for your colon and digestive health. So naturally, they add up to be a much healthier alternative to any packaged snack. I recommend organic chickpeas or ones with no additives. READ those labels, people! Chickpeas are very inexpensive, so getting a good quality can of chickpeas is no wallet burner. Eat ’em at home or pack them up and take them with you in the car or to work, school, and on your other daily travels.

Next time you have a snack attack, try these out! Enjoy xo

Peanut Butter Snow Bites

I love convenient, delicious foods. Who doesn’t? My Peanut Butter Snow Bites are just that: convenient, delicious, nutritiously packed, fun, easy, and quick. These are for the ultimate nut butter fan. I used organic peanut butter, but you could really use any kind of nut or seed butter. For those of you with nut allergies, try sunflower or pumpkin seed butter! As always though, read the ingredients–minimal ingredients are best.

I created these peanut butter creations because I wanted something that I could snack on that could be paired with a piece of fruit or a nutribullet smoothie, so I knew I needed my snack to include a few things: a source of energy, some superfoods, protein, and healthy fat. I also wanted something that I would crave. I usually crave nut butter or dark chocolate. For some reason, those two things are my idea of amazing, delectable treats. My snow bites have both of those things, while still being totally nutritious. Just look at these beauties:

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They look too good to be true, but I promise you they are nutrient packed and complete a balanced snack when paired with fruit or a fruit + veggie combo, like a nutribullet smoothie 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup organic rolled oats
  • Cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp organic golden ground flaxseed
  • 1 tbsp organic chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp Enjoy Life chocolate chips
  • About 1/2 jar organic peanut butter, almond butter, or other nut/seed butter
  • Coconut flakes (a nice pile to roll the bites in)

Yields 8 large snow bites or 16 smaller bites. I made 8 large snow bites and either ate half or split it with my boyfriend. I could only fit 8 in my freezer, but if you have the room you could get 16 bites out of this recipe! They would be smaller, but perfectly portioned.

Procedure: 

  1. Combine dry ingredients (everything except the nut butter) in a large bowl and mix together with a spoon
  2. Add the nut butter in by the spoonful until you have enough to hold together all the dry ingredients (should be close to 1/2 a jar) You might have to scoop, mix…scoop more, mix, etc.
  3. Use your hands to thoroughly mix the dry ingredients into the nut butter until you have 1 large mound
  4. Break off pieces of the mound and roll into smaller bites. Size is totally up to you!
  5. Roll bites in coconut flakes and place on pan covered with wax paper
  6. Freeze bites for 30 minutes
  7. Eat and enjoy 🙂

Store in an air-tight container in the fridge. 

I loved these and am totally going to make them again. They are the perfect thing to have on-hand for the whole week. These would be great for kids because you really taste the peanut butter more than anything else, yet you get nutrition from the oats, chia seeds, flaxseeds, and the peanut butter! Enjoy Life chocolate chips are my go-to brand for chocolate chips because they are soy, nut, and dairy free; great for those with allergies and those who avoid soy (like me). I think you could also taste a hint of nuttiness from the flaxseed which I really enjoyed, and Chris said he could taste the coconut coming through, too. Mmmm 🙂 Basically, they taste great and should go over well with the kiddies or any nut butter lover! Plus, you could easily pack them up and take them with you to school or work. If there’s a fridge handy, you can take them anywhere!

Whether you stash them at home or take them with you for a pick-me-up, I just hope you try these out! I’d love to hear what you think and see if you use a different nut butter. I was originally going to use almond butter, but I didn’t want to use so much and have it be gone so quickly 🙂 Comment or post a picture on instagram with #runningongood or @runningongood so I can see! Enjoy xoxo

Nutribullet Recipes

I got a Nutribullet for Christmas and have been using it every day for the last three days. I love it! The Nutribullet is great because it emulsifies everything. You keep all the fiber and nutrients from the skin of your foods but are left with a drinkable, non-chunky, nutrient extracted nutriblast. It is the perfect way to get all the benefits from juicing and smoothies in one shot. Here are some of the nutriblasts that I’ve been putting together:

1) Veggie-Fruit Nutriblast

  • Spinach
  • 2 stalk of Celery
  • 1 Apple
  • 1 Pear
  • Goji berries (whole or powder)
  • Water

2) Tahitian Vanilla Nutriblast

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  • Spinach
  • 2 stalks of Celery
  • Frozen Peach slices
  • 1 Pear
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit Vanilla Protein
  • 1/4 Lemon
  • Water
  • A dash of unsweetened almond milk

3) Vanilla Berry Protein Nutriblast

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  • Spinach
  • 2 stalks of Celery
  • Blueberries
  • Frozen Peach slices
  • Goji berries
  • 1 scoop Perfect Fit Protein
  • Water
  • Splash of unsweetened almond milk