And I will walk (run) 500 (100) miles…

Oh, come on, you know you’re singing The Proclaimers song with me!

Da-da-da dun-diddle un-diddle un-diddle uh da-da

Now that we’ve gotten that out of our systems…

Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you probably know by now that September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month. And unless you’ve been living under a rock in that cave, you probably ARE aware of childhood cancer. So why is there a whole month devoted to bringing awareness to a disease that people already know about?

Well, firstly, cancer sucks and if we can help eradicate it by any means possible, WE WILL DO IT.

Let’s take a peek at some facts.

goingthedistance

Last year, the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation decided to up the ante and invited people to donate miles in hopes of reaching a million. What’s the significance of a million miles?

Drawing from the inspiration of Foundation creator Alexandra “Alex” Scott, who set out to raise $1 million through lemonade stands in 2004, Jay Scott [Alex's father] feels that through combined efforts, reaching one million miles in just thirty days is attainable. The initiative provides a fun, easy and free way for people across the country to make a difference in the fight against childhood cancer.
Million-Miles

Personally, I’ve pledged to complete 100 miles this September. It’s a higher number than what I usually do within a month but attainable and for the very best cause. Every step I take during a run, every person I connect with during a walk with my dog, and even walking my child home from school – it all counts toward my goal of raising miles and awareness! As such, I feel like I’m part of something that’s bigger than myself and that’s a good feeling!

Speaking of something bigger than myself, our team has been absolutely incredible at logging miles and fundraising. When we first heard about the initiative last year, the thought of fitness bloggers from all across the country coming together and donating their miles just overwhelmed us with emotions. Furthermore, we’ve seen both last year and this year, it has encouraged people who wanted to get moving to join us, get out there, and have the support of others while doing it.

teamscootadoot

In the past 21 days alone, our team has raised nearly 1000 miles and over $1700! And, you’ll be happy to know that it’s not too late to join our team! Want to get in on the action? Check out our Team Scoot a Doot Million Mile page.

We’re rewarding our top miles donated, top fundraiser and random #onwednesdaywearyellow social media photo with some fun prizes, including gorgeous Momentum Jewelry motivation wrap bracelets and foot notes.

wrapbracelets

Momentum wrap bracelets

Momentum Foot Notes

Momentum Foot Notes

Make sure to swing by some of our team members blogs, like Nicole, Bonnie, Suzanne, and Kristen to cheer them on as they #Journey2aMillion!

Nine days until the end of the month… LET’S DO THIS!

Many thanks to Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for the facts and figures in this blog post. And thank you, thank you, thank you to Amy of Momentum Jewelry!

Recipe Box: Lemon Cottage Cheese Potato Pancakes

A.k.a. Breakfast Protein, Alex’s Lemonade Stand style.

When I was planning these breakfast protein posts for September, I knew I wanted to incorporate a lemon-y recipe that was also a good source of morning protein. This wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be! I typically like my lemon in cake form, and baked goods and protein don’t exactly go hand-in-hand for me. It usually involves adding protein powder, which just makes thing taste off to me.

And then, I stumbled upon a recipe I’d had written down for a while, but had never made. Lemon Cottage Cheese Potato Pancakes. See, still cake!

Truthfully, I don’t even remember where I got this recipe. It’s just one of those one jotted down on a slip of paper and stuck in a pile. Every time I would run into it, I would get all excited at the idea of making them, but I never would.

That was very silly of me.

These were really delicious, and one of those recipes that has few ingredients, is low on time and effort, and is both tasty and versatile. You could totally make these as a side dish for dinner, or serve them as a late lunch. But, since I’ve been writing about breakfast all month, these had a starring role for a couple of mornings.

Lemon Cottage Cheese Potato Pancakes

4 Medium sized Potatoes, boiled and mashed

1 TBSP minced shallots

2 eggs, beaten

1 cup low-fat or fat-free cottage cheese

1/2 cup flour

Zest of one small lemon

1/2 teaspoon herbs

Combine all ingredients and mix well. Form into 16 small patties. Heat oil on a griddle or frying pan. Cook until golden brown over medium heat, about 4 minutes per side.

That’s it. No, really, that’s it. Crazy, right?

A couple of notes. I used whipped cottage cheese, so no lumps, but I think it would be just as good with regular. You can totally make the potatoes ahead, just let them warm up a bit before you start mixing. For the herbs, I used thyme and parsley, but really, use whatever is your preference. These also freeze well, just wrap them in wax paper and pop them in a freezer bag. Then, when you’re ready to eat them, a minute or two in the microwave and you’re good to go.

The cakes were creamy in the middle with crispy edges. So good! Serve them…pretty much however you like. I mean, I wouldn’t put maple syrup on them or anything, they’re not that kind of pancakes. But in this case, hollandaise made a lovely ‘syrup’. Plus, more lemon! The potato pancakes made an egg-cellent (yolk, yolk) base for my Eggs Benedict. I took pictures but truthfully, the looked like crap, sooooooo….

So, why Lemon? Well, if you don’t already know, we’ve formed a team for the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Million Mile Run-Walk-Ride, to raise money for pediatric cancer research. We’re walking and running and riding and raising money for pediatric cancer research. If kicking cancer’s butt is your thing, you should totally join us!

Shiny (er, Sweaty), Happy, Person Running

If you have young kids, then you know that the only thing they’re really consistent about is being inconsistent. My happy little dude, who has always been fine with our babysitter, and really, never met a stranger he didn’t like, is currently going through some terrible separation anxiety. He cries when my husband leaves for work, he wails when we drop the girls off at school. He sobs when I leave- even if he’s with his dad, or our sitter who’s been with us since before he was born. We’ve been sitting together in the crying room at church and the gym hasn’t been an option- as soon as we walk in the doors of a nursery, he shakes his head and says, “Nope.”

I know this will pass, and typically, I’m pretty patient and let the baby lead on these things, but- (of course there’s a “but”) I need to exercise. I was excited to finally start running again, and had fallen into a decent schedule of treadmill walk/running and cycling on a stationary bike when the nursery meltdowns began.

A week passed without any workouts and September 1st arrived- the beginning of our #journey2amillion. I knew I had to do something, so I dusted off the jogging stroller and my garmin, grabbed a hat and some pepper spray, and off we went. I ran and walked just over 3.5 miles that day, the most I had done since the Nike half. A day passed and I went out again. I continued the next week, running every other day. I switched up my intervals quickly and I don’t want to bore you with all the numbers, but I started out running 15 minutes at a time, and yesterday, I ran a full 30 minutes without stopping to walk.

Slightly happier to be in a stroller vs. gym nursery. He'd probably most like to run alongside me!

Slightly happier to be in a stroller vs. gym nursery. He’d probably most like to run alongside me!

I am so crazy happy to be running again. My legs feel lighter. My mind feels lighter. And the best part is, I’m running for a cause this month- for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. Most of you probably already know that we’re logging miles (and wearing yellow) all month to raise awareness for childhood cancer.

#onwednesdayswewearyellow On Wednesdays, I also make a lot of jokes about dressing like Brenda Walsh.

#onwednesdayswewearyellow On Wednesdays, I also make a lot of jokes about dressing like Brenda Walsh.

We’re doing good, and feeling good, and I’m feeling even better because not all of my miles are coming from walking or cycling. High fives all around!

I’ve also been taking yoga classes again. Do you have a regular yoga studio? I like to switch it up based on my needs. My Saturday morning class works because it’s an early morning power hour, so I don’t feel like I’m missing most of the morning. There’s an evening class at a different studio that I love for relaxation. And finally, a new hot yoga place opened in my city! This is a BIG DEAL because all of the other hot studios are at least 40 minutes away. They have classes later in the evening, which is perfect for me because I can get the kids into bed before I “Om.”

So, hooray for recovering from injuries! I’m grateful for consistent exercise, even if I’m surrounded by chaos.

The 90s are back. Whose closet would you raid- Brenda, Kelly, or Donna (Martin graduates)? How far do you drive for yoga? Check out our page for Alex’s Million Mile! There’s still time to join our team, or donate: http://www.alexslemonade.org/mypage/1117658

Race recap: hotter than hades at the Bird-in-Hand half marathon

Rough.

With one word to describe the Bird-in-Hand half marathon, this lone thought keeps topping my list.

It was a warm and muggy morning, with pre-dawn temps well into the 70s. Humidity was 96%. Oof.

IMG_0719An Amish family of runners at the race site

After an insane work week earlier this month, I headed to my hometown to run the rural road race for the second straight year. Lancaster, Pennsylvania is Amish country. Home to many in the Pennsylvania Dutch Amish and Mennonite community. Many in the county’s Amish community love to run and have a growing reputation as strong competitors in running circles. And this annual race is organized by that growing running community.

I drove to PA with my running pal Ray and connected with the lovely Kyle and Christina for our big Saturday morning run – the Bird-in-Hand Half Marathon.

We headed to the race site in rural Lancaster County early Saturday morning amidst the fog and were treated to a stellar sunrise.

IMG_0704Ah, Lancaster

We arrived early so we could all mentally prepare. When Kyle suggested we run intervals together – I immediately agreed. Repeated cycles of five minutes of running and one minute of walking sounded like a brilliant way to tackle this muggy 13.1.

IMG_0722From left: me, Kyle, Christina and Ray

As we prepped to run and lined up at the start, we spotted a few ladies pinning each other’s race bibs on their dresses. That’s right – many of the Amish run in their everyday clothes, including hair coverings. And sneakers.

IMG_0743Let’s race, ladies

Soon enough, it was go time. Kyle and I ran together, and we were thankful to stick to our interval plan. Dozens of people passed us each time we walked those first few miles.

Among them, we repeatedly encountered an Amish man running with his young daughter. We cheered each time we saw them, noting how fantastic their joint venture was.

IMG_0748Seriously, I love this duo.

By mile three, I was drenched. I’m talking soaked to the bone. Kyle and I stopped to walk at least twice each mile.

Around the turnaround at mile five, Kyle waved me on. Her legs were heavy, as she’d run a 20-miler just 6 days prior.

I pushed ahead, passing folks as I ran, then watching them pass me by when it was my time to walk.

The next hour was such a challenge. I was overheated. I wanted to stop, but I didn’t. I stuck to Kyle’s plan, even though I was now running solo. I listened to her voice on my head. I didn’t want to let her down by walking too long, or running too slowly .

IMG_0750Running through the corn(fields)

The race itself was a stunning, but hilly course through the cornfields and farmland in Lancaster. Every mile or so, Amish kids manned water and Gatorade stations, and alerted runners to the beverages in four-part harmony.

Amish and Mennonite families cheered us along, many while also doused us with water from garden hoses and sprinklers.

With the heat and humidity, race organizers added about a dozen huge coolers filled with ice along the route. Each time I spotted one, I grabbed a handful, ate a few cubes and shoved ice down my bra.

I sounded like a maraca as I ran on.

As I ran on I saw lots of horses, cows and goats. There were loads of farms, fields and even a half-dozen one-room schoolhouses and horse-drawn buggies galore.

Around mile 8, I hoofed it up a hill and spotted something out of the ordinary.

IMG_0752um, what?

Am I hallucinating, or is that a pair of camels?

Turns out, I said that out loud as another runner answered, informing me that yes indeedy, camels were hanging out along the side of the road.

I spent the next few miles wondering why. I learned more the following week when I found an article about a camel dairy farm  in the Lancaster paper’s news archives. Did you know you can milk them? Yup. But apparently they are not incredibly willing participants.

By this point of the race, I was passing people left and right. Please don’t get me wrong. I certainly wasn’t speeding. My running time was just a 9-minute-mile pace. I’d just started walking far earlier than most, so I had more in my reserves as we all pressed on. (Thank you Kyle!!)

We cut through a farm on a gravel toad, where I tripped over a cornstalk and nearly landed flat on my face. Somehow I caught myself and moved on. It was along this stretch that cups of Rita’s Water Ice were distributed. So happy! The sugar rush added some pep to my step.

The last miles were tough. I’d been seeing occupied ambulances whiz by and volunteers and medics helping collapsed runners along the course. I was concerned about hydrating properly and making it to the end.

As it turned out, more than 50 of the 1,700 registered runners suffered heat exhaustion. Some even went to the hospital. The high for the day was 91.

I didn’t walk that last mile. I just wanted to finish. When I rounded the final turn onto a grass field and sprinted (eh, as much as I could muster) to the finish, I heard an announcer share finishers ‘ names and hometowns.

I never heard my name, but I couldn’t have cared less. I was done.

I guzzled water and chocolate milk and ate a banana before I tripped over Ray in the field and encountered my mom. A few minutes later, we heard Kyle ‘s name announced as she finished the run.

IMG_0721The hot air balloon launch at the start. This never gets old.

My time was 5 minutes slower than last year, when conditions were far more ideal. But I placed in the top third, compared to last year when I was solidly in the middle.

It wasn’t my best race by far. But I’m so proud of how all three of us fared – each about 15 minutes off our PR paces. But given the conditions, we ran smart and made it through without injuring ourselves. So to us, the race was a success!

IMG_0775We’re done! As Christina said, the race was so brutal we lost a whole human. Not to worry, she finished uninjured!

Despite the sizzling conditions, I love this small-town race and would do it again in a heartbeat. Plus, you get a handcrafted medal made from a horseshoe. I nearly tipped over – again – when an Amish girl placed it around my neck.

These miles marked my first double digit run this month for me toward Scootadoot’s Million Mile Run. And NEWS!  This month, starting today (9/15) at midnight, Volvo is matching funds of donations to Alex’s Lemonade Stand for up to $30,000!

The number 30 is significant because every hour, 30 news cases of cancer affect children under the age of 20 worldwide.

That means any donation given during this period will go TWICE AS FAR!

If you wish to donate, check out our team page – We’ve raised $800 for pediatric cancer halfway through September!

Have you run a race in less-than-ideal conditions? How did you cope? Did you ever not finish due to overheating? Have you heard of this race?

Breakfast Protein: Set It Up

Life…life is crazy. I mean, I knew this week would be nuts, but this week was NUTS. Two soccer games, one Weight Watchers meeting, two doctor’s appointments, one back to school night and one English paper (not mine). Did I forget to mention a full-time job, cooking, cleaning and fitting in exercise? How silly of me! This week was honestly so full that I barely remember it.

Which brings me to the ideas behind week two of the breakfast protein series. PREP.

Seriously, if you have a busy lifestyle, and really, who doesn’t, prepping meals ahead can be such a lifesaver. And I knew going in to this week, that I needed to be ready. Luckily, there are quite a few protein breakfast options that can be thrown together days in advance, and quickly at that, for grab and go mornings. These are some of my favorites.

Overnight Oats

It’s not secret that we Scoot chicks love our oats. Heck, when five of us got together in April, we had an oatmeal buffet! But if you ask me, hot oatmeal is much better prepared fresh. So, for make ahead meals, overnight oats are my go to. But Bec, oats aren’t super protein-y! No, not high, but they do have some protein. And when you’re making overnight refrigerator oats, you can layer in some other great protein sources, like Greek yogurt and Chia seeds. There are a million recipes for overnight oats, but my tried and true is the recipe and variations found on The Yummy Life. I didn’t take a picture of the finished product. I love you all to much for that. Overnight oats may be delicious and nutritious, but they aren’t winning any beauty contests.

Overnight Oats, Before. 2014.

Overnight Oats, Before. 2014.

 

Egg Muffins

These babies have been in heavy rotation throughout the summer. Whipping up a batch takes almost no time, and then you can store them in the fridge if you’re going to eat them within a couple days (mine never last longer) or pop them in the freezer for later use. And holy versatile, Batman! My egg base is 4 eggs and 4 egg whites whipped with a bit of water, and after that, it’s a free-for-all. Ham, bacon, sausage, shredded potatoes, onions, mushrooms, peppers, cheese. I’ve made these so many different ways, and they’ve all been delicious. And if you’re a fellow Weight Watchers member, these average about 2 Points Plus per muffin (totally depends on ingredients, definitely calculate based on what you add). If these sound right up your alley, the best advice I can give is to order a silicone muffin pan. Makes clean up super easy. Because you’ve saved all this time prepping, you don’t want to spend it scrubbing a muffin tin. Or maybe you do, I’m not judging!

 

Denver Omelette Egg Muffins.

Denver Omelette Egg Muffins.

 

Quinoa

Is it a grain? A seed? How do you even pronounce it? (Fun fact, for a year, I was pronouncing it Kwin-o-a. I’m so cool). At this point, I’m sure this superfood isn’t new to most of you, but it might be new to your breakfast table. Quinoa is the edible seed of a grain plant, and it’s a really good source of protein. I often use it as a replacement for rice, but in the mornings, it also makes a yummy breakfast cereal. When I make a big batch for a meal, I just tuck some aside in the fridge. Voila, breakfast. Just heat it up in the microwave, add some nuts and dried fruit (or really, put whatever tickles your fancy in there), a little sweetener (maple syrup is my drug of choice) and pour some milk over top. It’s similar to Cream of Wheat, which for me, is a good thing. FYI, if you cook your quinoa in chicken stock, I wouldn’t recommend it as breakfast cereal. Becuase I like you and don’t want you to gag.

Cream of Kwinoa?

Cream of Kwinoa?

And that’s how I do breakfast protein, make ahead style. On that note, zoooooommmmm….

Are there any make ahead breakfasts that you love? Tell us about them in the comments! 

Road Tested: Manitoba Harvest’s Hemp Pro 70

Back in February, we adopted our dog, Gemma. She came from the streets of Philadelphia and I swore that she was going to have the best life in our home. We feed her food that we get at a specialty natural pet food store, give her only the best treats, and occasionally she gets free range, organic eggs. Um, I’m pretty sure she eats better than I do!

Now, I’m not a vegan but I do try to be cognizant of what I put in my body. Therefore when I heard from Fit Approach that Manitoba Harvest was looking for some folks to try out their hemp protein powder, I jumped at the opportunity.

Oh, do go on!

Oh, do go on!

I’m a morning gym goer, so my need/want for protein powder is usually in the form of smoothies. Prior to this, I solely went on taste. I tried a few protein powders that were… well, in a word, TERRIBLE. Chalky, powdery, strong-flavored (and NOT in a good way).

I finally found a protein powder that was right up my alley and it’s worked well for me but I’m always interested in trying new things, especially when they are better for me! Plant based protein with four ingredients? I’m down!

Since I was trying new things, I decided to try a couple of new smoothie recipes from the Manitoba Harvest website. I was sent two packets of Hemp Pro 70: chocolate and vanilla.

Now, before I continue, let me say that I’m definitely more of a vanilla fan than a chocolate when it comes to protein powder. That being said, I figured that I would start with the chocolate to give it a fair shot and not let any previous biases cloud my judgement.

The recipes on the website call for one serving of the protein powder but since I was given a half serving in the sample, the recipes below are adjusted accordingly. If you click through to their site, you can see the recipes.

Okay, chocolate, get your game face on!

Okay, chocolate, get your game face on!

Berry-Choco Smoothie

  • 3/4 cup organic blueberries
  • .5 Manitoba Harvest organic hemp protein powder chocolate
  • 1/2 chocolate almond milk (I used original unsweetened almond milk, as I didn’t have chocolate almond milk. I also upped it to a cup because it was too thick to drink.)

Combine in a blender and serve!

chocolateberry

My thoughts? Well, sadly, I am still not a huge chocolate protein powder fan. I’m not sure if it’s the recipe (although I do love blueberries) or what I didn’t exactly adore about this smoothie, but I wasn’t crazy about it. The Manitoba Harvest folks suggest that their hemp products have a nutty taste but I felt like it was more earth-y.

Gemma was definitely begging for some but no can do, pup; no chocolate for dogs!

However, with the knowledge that I usually favor the flavor of vanilla protein powder, I was looking forward to powering on the following day.

Into the blender you go!

Into the blender you go!

Vanilla Berry Banana Shake

  • 1/2 cup organic strawberries
  • 1/2 organic banana
  • .5 serving of Manitoba Harvest organic hemp protein vanilla
  • 1/2 cup of organic vanilla almond milk (Again, I used original unsweetened almond milk. And again, I upped the amount to a cup.)
  • 1/4 cup of ice (which basically equals a cube)

Combine and blend ingredients in blender. Serve. Enjoy!

Hello, my pretty!

Hello, my pretty!

Now THIS? This was total and complete love at first taste. And second. And third. Sometimes I save smoothies to share with my husband but not this time. (Too bad, so sad, Dude!) (Don’t fret – Gemma got the other half of the banana.)

Additionally, what’s pretty rad about this protein is that it’s water soluble. So you can throw it into water, almond milk, milk milk (if you’re an animal product type), coconut water and bam – it’s ready to go. Sign me up for a big canister of vanilla!

If you’d like to give the Manitoba Harvest Hemp Pro 70 products a whirl, here’s a coupon code! You can get 20% off the #pro70 vanilla and chocolate flavors with the code: sweatpinkpro70

Or, you can try your hand at winning a case of Manitoba Harvest Hemp Pro 70 – share a picture on Instagram or Twitter showing your hemp love! Make sure you tag @manitobaharvest and hashtag #pro70 so that they see what’cha got! Contest ends 9/30.

Talk to me about smoothies, because I love them so. Any suggestions for chocolate protein powder recipes that I can try? (I really like the chocolate and peanut butter combo.) How about vanilla? Have you ever tried Hemp Pro 70?

Fit Approach and Manitoba Harvest provided the me with the opportunity to taste and review. All opinions are my own.

Cam’s Costume Corner

I was a huge theater geek in high school.  Big surprise, I know.   When I get the chance to put on fancy clothes and be some other persona for the day, I take advantage.  Even if it means I’ll be stepping into character for 13.1 miles.

The key is to create a versatile and functional illusion of what you’re trying to convey.  This is the most challenging aspect for me.  I always forget that the costume doesn’t have to be perfect.  It doesn’t need a blind hem or actual button holes.  It’s for show.  You will wear that costume one time, it doesn’t need to be a work of art.  It does, however, need to stay together for awhile.  I’ve put together a few tips, just to get your creative juices flowing.

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Doesn’t everyone bring their sewing machine and serger on their runcations?

Tip #1: Sequins are pretty, but they chafe like a mother.

Choosing the right fabric is vital.  I generally want my costumes to be soft yet supportive.  I also run hot so I need material that will breathe well.  I generally choose cotton spandex blends. However, I will absolutely embellish with some fanciful trims.  For example, our Ring Master costumes consisted of a plain white tank top with the sparkly vest sewn right onto it.  The vest was a heavier material with the gold trim sewn to look like closures.  A coat with tails would have been awesome, but who wants to run in that?  I used the tulle to create a no-sew bustle instead. That way we could give the illusion of a fancy coat without an actual coat.

unnamed-9

Tip #2 Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize

Sometimes the best costumes aren’t even about the actual clothes.  Accessories can take your typical runwear and turn you into a roller derby diva.  For these costumes we used black shorts and shirts silk-screened with a logo.  Everything else was in the accessories: bandaids, temporary tattoos, handkerchiefs, knee pads and elbow pads, fishnets, even black Halloween make-up for creating bruises and missing teeth.

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Tip #3 No Zippers Necessary

When I made these three Good Fairy costumes for the Tink half, I wasn’t going to have a chance to fit the dress to the girls.  So instead of making the dresses with zippers, I used a t-shirt as the bodice and sewed the skirt onto the bottom of the shirt.  That way I knew the dresses would fit.  The shirts were also comfy and stretchy, perfect for running 13.1 miles in wings and a hat.

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Tip #4 Fake It till you Make It.

Sometimes you have to just fake it. For this Rainbow Brite costume, I didn’t have a chance to finish the sleeves.  So I just paired the dress with a shirt and gloves.  This costume won me $100!

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Tip #5 Work It

When it comes down to it, attitude has a lot to do with whether or not the costume works.  You have to embody the persona you’re trying to represent.  For instances, when I’m dressed like a ninja, I’m completely undetectable.  I hide behind trees and jump and kick and I truly become the ninja.  Same with our signature poses last weekend at the Disney 10k.  We worked those sailor dresses!

10kDCA

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