Friday, October 29, 2010

Yuk yuks

Ryan and I had such a great time at the comedy club. We've both never been to a stand-up show before, but it was hilarious. My cheeks were hurting because I couldn't stop smiling and/or laughing. We both definitely want to go more often.

Ryan dragged me out to Vietnamese food after, in China town. I'm a slightly adventurous eater, but when I can't read the menu, and when I know there's cow stomach lining in the soup, I'm a little turned off. So I just sat and watched Ryan eat.

See you in the morning! I'm hoping that I have some oats left somewhere. Please! Please let there be oats!!!

My very special running buddy

I've been searching for running groups and partners for weeks, but have come up with nothing. It wasn't until today that I realized that the answer was right in front of me.

GIGI!!!! We had such a great time together. I was dreading this run and kept putting it off until I thought about bringing Gigi. She got her excercise while I got mine, it was perfect. Little did I know that she's a tank, and doesn't ever get tired out! We ran  6 km in 32:43, did 4 hill repeats, and then ran another 2.7 km home! But here's the kicker, she was pulling me the WHOLE time! She's in better shape then I am! When I was doing the hill repeats she ran up and down the hill with me, and then chased some dogs in between. She's a bottomless pit of energy.

When we got home we both did an abdominal workout. Just kidding. I did, and she tried to bite my feet over and over again. I did :

  • Weighted toe crunch ( with 15 lb dumbbell) x 15
  • Obliques row x 15 on each side
  • Scissor kick x 15 on each leg
  • Bicycle crunch x 15 on each side
  • In-n-out planks x 15 on each side
I did all 5 excercies in a row for a total of three sets.

Dinner tonight was Oh She Glow's chickpea bites with a bit of variation, in an Ezekiel wrap with some hummus, tahini, lettuce, red pepper and onion! It was very delicious and exactly what I was craving.

Chickpea Fallafel Type Things:


  • 1 can of cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 4 tbsp spelt flour, or any other flour
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1/2 tsp parsley
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp hot curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp cayenne ( do not mix with everything else)
Put all ingredients into a food processor and process away. Heat oven to 400, and place your puree onto a silicone baking sheet or parchment paper into little balls. Flatten them out and then sprinkle with cayenne. Bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown.

Now, Ryan and I are off with friends to a comedy club! Hope it's good!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Fresh bowl


Overnight oats, I haven't had it in so long but it was so delicious! Before I went to bed, I took 1 cup of oats, 2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut, 1/4 cup pecans, and 1-2 cups brown rice milk. Put it in the fridge overnight, and in the morning put on your favourite toppings. I added mango chunks and almond butter! Yum!!

For dinner:

I did a re-make of a Fresh bowl I had at their restaurant. I cooked 1/2 cup of brown rice in veg stock, then added about 1/2 cup of sliced cucumber, 3 tablespoons hummus, 1 teaspoon cayenne, and 1/4 of an onion. I mixed it all around and it was delicious!

Here are a few of the other things I've eaten in the past few days but had not gotten around to posting.

Spelt gnocchi in my homemade tomato sauce with 2 tbsp nutritional yeast and 1/3 cup rice milk. Added some asparagus and onions too!

My spelt sweet potato and date muffins, topped with almond butter! A great snack.

My favourite vegan mac n cheese. Recipe is posted on the blog.

Today was a major cleaning day. Nine loads of laundry! All in all, the laundry cost 30$! What a rip off! Now all the laundry is on the bed waiting to get folded. :(

I made it out to swimming today. It was a one hour class and we did:

  • 300 warmup free
  • 8 x 25 kick ( no arms dolphin kick on front, no arms dolphin kick on back) 10 second rest
  • 10 x 100 ( third 25 is fly) on 1:50
  • 4x ( 50 easy free, 25 easy free, 25 hard fly)
  • 4 x ( 25 fly sprints)
  • 200 cool down free
I didn't feel very tired out, maybe I just have to push myself harder. I'm aiming for a long run tomorrow so I hope it happens. I just hate running in the cold! I miss the heat!!! I'm one of those crazy runners that you see running when its over 100 degrees. I blame hot yoga.

See you in the AM! Can't wait for my oats!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Knit, Knit, Knit

I took a knitting lesson last night and it was so much fun! It took me a while to get comfortable with it, but now I think i've got it; atleast the basics anyways. Before I took the lesson I told myself I would make scarves for everyone this year for Christmas, since making my first scarf my intention has changed. No way am I making 20 scarves. I think maybe 2 or 3 is enough, and that's still pushing it.

This is my colour choice!
This is how far I've gotten. It's going to be a very wide scarf.
I made quite a few mistakes.
Giant hole in the scarf, oops. No clue what happened there.

Now, onto my workout today! I had to tear myself away from the knitting, I could have sat there all day doing it. I had Planet Earth playing in the background with both bears on my lap. Who could leave that?

Cardio: 45 min HIIT on the treadmill
  • Incline 1.0
  • 10 minute warmup ( 5 minutes at 5.5, 5 minutes at 6.0)
  • 10 x ( 30 seconds at 8.0 + 1 minute at 6.0)
  • 5 minutes at 6.0
  • 10 x (30 seconds at 8.3 + 1 minute at 6.0)
  • 5 minute cool down
In this 45 minutes I ran a total of 5 miles, and boy was it hard.  Garmin says I burnt 519 calories with a max HR of  176 and an average HR of 163.
I really like doing speed running on the treadmill because it keeps me at the pace I need to be. If I were doing this outside I would run like crazy at first then fizzle out pretty quickly. With a treadmill, I have to keep that pace or I embarrass myself by falling off the treadmill.

Strength training: LEGS!
  • Front squat with stability ball 3 x 15
  • Dumbbell 4 way hop 3 x 1:00
  • Wall squat with stability ball and 2 x 15 lb dumbbell   3x 15
  • Wall lunge with stability ball and 2 x 15 lb dumbell 3 x 15 for each leg
  • Stability ball split squat 3 x 15 for each leg
  • Stability ball leg curl (total killer!) 3 x 15
  • Stability ball hip extensions (double leg) 3 x 15
  • Deadlifts with 2 x 15 lb dumbbells 3 x 15
Garmin said I burnt 277 calories in the 37 minutes that I spent doing the leg workout! My legs are going to be very sore tomorrow.

Now I'm off to make some spelt gnocchi with asparagus, and maybe make it to swimming?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Swim workout!

Last night I did something that I haven't done in a couple of years: swim! I used to swim a lot back home, almost twice a day sometimes. I think doing it so much kind of made me sick of it, and the fact that the chlorine kills your hair. But I gave it a shot yesterday and I had an awesome time. I thought it might take me a few times to get the hang of it again, but the second my body hit the water, it's like a part of my brain that I hand't used in a while came back in a flash. Within seconds I remembered my breathing, stroke, and turn techniques! My stamina and speed weren't too bad either.

We ended up doing 200 IM warmup, slowly. Then 3 x ( 3 x 100 IM + 150 free), then 200 IM cooldown. It was only an hour. But I remember fitting in a lot more in an hour when I swam before. We'll see what happens! Either way I woke up with extremely sore shoulders!

Breakfast this morning:

Toasted Ezekiel muffin with almond butter and apple butter.
Since I'm so sore, I think i'll dedicate today to cleaning. :(     
Exciting fact! Tonight is my first knitting lesson!

See you later! :)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

101 POST!

I am so sore today from yesterdays workout. I did a track workout in the morning, and then a tough HIIT workout (high intensity interval training).

The track workout consisted of:

  • 1 x 1 mile in 7:57
  • 2 x 800 m in 3:55, and 4:00
  • 3 x 400 m in 1:58, 1:50, and 1:50
  • 4 x 200 m in 0:48, 0:49, 0:48, 0:46
  • 5 x 100 m in 0:23, 0:24, 0:23, 0:22, 0:22
I'm not much of a speedy runner, so I was quite proud with my results. My legs felt horrible after the mile, so I think that's why my 800's were slower than the previous weeks.

I found a swim club in Toronto, so I'm going to give it a try today. I haven't swam in a few years, but i'm hoping the stroke technique, breathing, and flip turns come back to me. When I first started swimming I had to use a noseplug, and after much taunting, I got rid of it. I hope I'll remember how to blow out of my nose and won't have to depend on it again!

I was in a time crunch for food yesterday before work so I tossed in a spelt pizza dough (pre-made) with my homemade tomato sauce, some red onion, walnuts, red pepper, and cashew cheese. It was delish; I ate the whole thing.

Note: walnuts taste amazing on pizza!

I'm off to work a super busy brunch. I won't be very effective with how sore I am, but here's to hoping everything works out!


Friday, October 22, 2010

Spinach pie version 2.0

I cheated by using pre-made spelt phylo dough. And holy crap is phylo hard to work with; I don't think I've ever cursed so much at dough. It was falling apart everywhere, ripping, and drying out way to fast.

I asked a really great chef earlier today if he had any tips for me for my phylo endevour, and he said to put a wet paper towel over the dough you haven't used yet, because it dries out too quickly. And also to oil/butter your sheets individually before you put your cheese and spinach on top. VERY IMPORTANT! :)

Spinach Pie Version 2.0


  • 6 cups of baby spinach
  • 1/4 medium sized vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 8 sheets pre-made phylo dough
  • 4 tbsp earth balance vegan butter, melted
  • basil cashew cheese
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil, minced

Make the basil cashew cheese ( 1 cup cashews soaked in water for at least 3 hours, 2 leaves of basil, 1/2 tsp sea salt, 1 garlic clove,  2 tbsp olive oil, 1.5 tbsp nutritional yeast, 1 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice; put into food processor and blend) and set aside. Next up, sautee the spinach, onion, garlic, parsley, and basil in the 2 tbsp of water. When the spinach is dry (10-15 min), set aside. Now is the hard part. Be very careful when handling your phylo. Take out a sheet and cover with butter, apply evenly. Now, add another sheet on top of the last one and add butter as well. Do this until you have the 8 sheets on top of eachother. Cut the sheets into squares that would fit into your cupcake tins. Put the dough into the cupcake tins and push it in tightly. Now add your spinach mixture, then top off with the cashew cheese and a few pine nuts! Bake in a 300 degree oven for about 25-30 minutes or until golden! Let cool and enjoy!

Phylo in the silicone cupcake holders
Fresh out of the oven!
I ate three of these! :)

See you tomorrow!

I have not abandoned The Little Health Monster

My camera has been broken and I have been eating horribly, so it's a good thing that I haven't posted any of it :)

But all is back to normal now! I started the morning off with a 6.25 km run in 32 minutes. It was super cold, and my lungs felt like they were being cut up by the wind. I now sound like an old lady when I talk.

Lunch was some lentil, quinoa, brown rice casserole that i've had on here previously.

Carrots, onions, red pepper, sweet potato and garlic!
Then I had to stop at Whole Foods to pick up some spelt phylo dough. Phylo is not something that I want to attempt myself, maybe some day, but not today. I plan on making a cashew cheese/ spinach phylo cup. Hopefully it turns out, i'm not going from a recipe this time (which usually means disaster). While I was there I picked up a vegan muffin, without all the icing it usually has. It wasn't overly sweet, but perfectly yummy.

It was my first time locking my bike up today since my last bike got stolen. I bought a heavy duty Kryptonite lock ( 135 $ ---> way too much for a lock, but apparently that's what they go for now), and I have to take my front tire off and attach it to the back tire, then pass the lock through the frame and both tires. I've seen the front tire being taken off thousands of times, but could I figure it out? Nope. I had to ask some passing cyclist, and thankfully they were nice enough to help me. The whole time at Whole Foods I was wondering if I would be able to put it back together. I managed to put it back together safely! My wheel didn't shoot off halfway home like I expected it to. :)  Hopefully I'll be able to take it off more easily next time.

Now I'm off to bring the puppers for a walk and then some yoga for runners. The phylo has to thaw for a few hours!

See you later, hopefully with a great recipe!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Peer Pressure

Beware, this might be a rant.


So, last December I decided not to drink for the rest of my life. I was never much of a drinker anyways, but I had the occasional "slurred-words-can't-walk-" kind of time. It was when I started analyzing the motivations behind drinking that I really started to dislike it. It seems that people are unable to have a really good time unless alcohol is involved. In my belief, if you need alcohol to make you anything other than your normal self (ie., happier, outgoing, energetic, less shy etc.) than you need to do some serious soul searching and understand why you're ingesting a poison to make  yourself act different. I used to drink because it made me more fun and talkative. And if I would have kept using alcohol as a crutch to my funness, then maybe I would have become an alcoholic, you never know. On a side note, you always end up just peeing the money  you spent away, and waking up with a headache and bad skin. Why we do this to ourselves? No clue. I also don't understand why it is that we're putting something that our body doesn't want into it. Do you think your body wakes up one morning and says yes!- I want some fermented products that slows down my brain processing and invades my blood stream? I don't think so. There is no question about it, if you had to choose between drinking orange juice and a martini, your body should be having the orange juice. Yeah, there might be some scientific evidence that says some wine is good for you, but no one can say that your body deserves a glass of wine over a Little Health Monster Skintastic Smoothie; no way. It's my belief that we only have one body, so we better make damn sure that everything we put in it is the best possible choice we have. Health is wealth they say. And by that quote, I want to be Bill Gates.

What spurred this whole topic was last nights work "Girls Night Out", which boys ended up crashing. I work in the service industry, where pretty much anyone is a heavy drinker. So it's a bit weird for everyone to hang out with me because i'm a non-drinking vegan. I was finally invited to this event because they thought that I might drink. So I decided, hey, why not, i'll have a couple. The way I was treated was extremely different when compared to the non-drinking, and drinking Marianne. So yes, I gave into peer pressure, and they had a much better time with me. But you know what, I didn't have that great of a time with everyone else. I mean, yeah, I had a wonderful time spending time with everyone, but if it was my choice, we'd be munching on popcorn all watching a movie. I like everyone's sober version so much more.So by the end of the night, everyone was a more outgoing version of themselves. I liked the old versions better. The same thing applies to my boyfriend. He drinks in excess a bit too often for my liking, but he claims he needs it because work is stressful (which is a whole other matter I don't want to get into). He changes from a wonderful person into a crazy-screaming-obscenities-weird person, and  I really just can't comprehend why anyone would want to do this to themselves.

Maybe it's just like with veganism. People are so used to rationalizing and looking the other way that they just think, well everyone else does it, so it has to be okay. Just because everyone else does it, does not make it okay, everyone else is just really stupid. Alot of Toronto people don't wear helmets, and dont hold doors open for anyone, and smoke, and eat fast food, but i've done my research, I know that I don't want to do those things.

So in conclusion, hehehe, I think people should do a quick mental check of why it is they are drinking and what they want to accomplish with it.

On a side note, my camera is currently not working, but I will get everything back up and running properly on here very soon!!

P.S. I do not mean in any way to offend anyone from this post. These are just my views, and they were written at a time when I was semi-angry.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Oh the things you'll do

Things I did today:

  • Went to a Toronto Raptors V.S. Phoenix Sun's Game --> Steve Nash =AMAZING!
  • Watched Karate Kid (made me want to learn Kung Fu)
  • Went mountain biking (sooooo much more fun than road biking, i'm still a chicken, but i'll get better)
  • Brought the puppers out for a walk
  • Ate a fallafel
  • Ate vegetable fried rice
  • Prepared for my track workout tomorrow (I really just wrote it out)
  • Ate lots of carrots with hummus
All in all, my day was pretty great! It had me thinking, " wow, I think I want to be a basketball player/mountain biker/ Kung Fu master". We'll see which one happens :)

Can't wait to finally get my cooking on tomorrow!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Top O' The Mornin'

Good morning, good morning!

This is what I will be dressing up as for Halloween!

Today is the Toronto International Bicycle show, and since my bike got stolen, I am trying to replace my mode of transportation. Apparently this show has amazing deals, and therefore very long lines. So although the show starts at 10, I am convincing the people we are going with to be there for 9. I always end up ambitiously too early for everything, so let's hope this is the case again, and that there is no giant line forming at 6 am.

I have the tightest hamstrings ever. After the leg workout Wednesday, the spin class Thursday, and my run and workout yesterday, there's just no time for them to be un-tightened. I will do lots of stretching today, though today my plan was to do a track workout. We'll see how it goes. Yesterdays run was 7.58 km in 42 minutes, and then I did one hour with my trainer at the gym. During the run I burnt 450 calories, and during the hour with my trainer I burnt 344.

I ate amazingly yesterday, but unfortunately I have to buy expensive camera batteries, so I have no photographs of it yet. I made a very easy tomato sauce, and had it with some brown rice spirals. I had every vegetable imaginable dipped in hummus, some spelt crackers dipped in too, a plum, some Little Health Monster Apple Pie Granola, and a leftover piece of the pumpkin pie from thanksgiving.

Now I'm off to see if I can wake Ryan out of his "I partied a bit too hard last night" state. Wish me luck.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Hello hello!

I am so tired today. Everytime I do one task I have to lay down and relax. This reminds me of when I had mono. I really hope I'm not getting sick. I hope that this tiredness is due to the really hard workouts i've been having.

Today was no exception. I did a one hour spin class (heart felt like it was going to burst), where the instructor told me I really pushed myself (yes!), and a 30 minute bicep session.
  • 4 x 12 hammer curls with 15 lbs dumbbells
  • 4 x 12 barbell wide grip curls with 30 lbs
  • 4 x 12 bicep curls with 15 lbs dumbbells
  • 4 x 12 barbell close grip curls with 30 lbs
The first two and last two were supersetted. I won't be able to lift much tomorrow, but here's to hopping I get great tonage on my arms soon enough!

I had some homemade cereal for breakfast, which I'm making more of tonight and will post the recipe, a red bell pepper + carrots with hummus, and mac & cheese (the one I made before, with nutritional yeast and curry powder). Im craving sweets, so I might have some banana soft serve later with some strawberries and organic grapes! Yum yum!

Since I don't have any pictures from today, I thought I'd post a few miscellaneous non-related pictures!

Gigi when she was a semi-puppy

Lola, not looking too happy
In Toronto Island, Lola was on the quadricycle with us!