Thursday, August 1, 2013

Ch-ch-ch-chia and other news from the homefront

When I was a child, I used to giggle at the commercials for Chia Pets.

How could you not chuckle at some of these figurines?

Apparently what comes around, goes around.  Recently I've been hearing a ton of accolades about the countless health benefits of chia seeds.  I figured I would give in to the hype and try them out.  What the heck.  (And no, I am NOT being compensated for this post).  Thanks to the beauty that is, an enormous bag of chia seeds showed up at my door a couple of days ago.

I haven't had a lot of time to experiment with the chia seeds yet, but I did want to share the picture from a chia drink recipe that I've made the last two nights.  This is really for no reason other than the drink looks uniquely cool (in my opinion, at least).


The recipe is very simple.  Basically you soak the chia seeds in water or coconut water for about 15 minutes, then add lemon or lime juice and a sweetener (I used honey) to taste.  How's that for effortless gourmet?

Now, in other news...

No More Excuses
My workplace just opened up a terrific new exercise facility.  They are even offering a variety of daily fitness classes (e.g. Zumba, spin, yoga, etc.).  Everything is free for all employees.  It is such an amazing and convenient amenity!

I am also very excited for the opportunities it will provide to help keep my workout routine diverse.  Case in point: I went on the rowing machine earlier this week for the first time in probably 15 years. It was nice to really use some upper-body muscles for once.  I could barely row for 20 minutes before giving in to my aching back and arms.

Good thing I wasn't in this situation.

Hello Lord Stanley!
I had a great time at the Blackhawks Convention this past weekend.  More on that to come later, but for now here is a quick picture from the festivities:

I could get used to seeing Stanley every few years...

Get Your Kicks on Half Marathon #6
I'm about thisclose to signing up for my sixth half marathon of 2013: the Prairie State Half Marathon.  I've been eyeing this race since its inaugural running in 2011.  It runs through a gorgeous local forest preserve that I've visited many times over the last decade to go hiking or picnicking.  I also love the October timeframe, when fall foliage should be in full bloom.  (Ahhhh, fall races... sigh!)

Check out this excerpt from an email that I received about the race:

The only thing holding me back from signing on up is that I've been battling a flare-up of tendinitis in my right knee (as opposed to my usually-wonky left knee).  Therefore, I'd ideally like to see how things go over the next month or so before committing to another half marathon.

I do have to admit, though, that it is pretty hard to not live my life by the concept of "sign up now, ask questions later"!

And finally...
Once again I have fallen horrifically behind on all of your blogs.  Bear with me as I've got a busy couple of weeks ahead of me with work and the NAAAP Convention next weekend.  But afterwards I should be home free.  Like a bird!  (Extra credit to anyone who recognizes where that quote came from.  =D )


  1. I used to eat the chia seeds a lot-like before a run after they soaked in water for a while. And I agree, they do look cool floating in the glass.

    That pic of you, Stanley cup and Adam is terrific!

    That half looks wonderful, if I wasn't running Chicago marathon the day after I would have totally considered it. Hope your knee feels better fast!

    1. Xaar - I'd heard that the chia seed drink is very popular in Mexico and Latin America! When you were living in Mexico, did you drink it there, too?

      Glad you like the picture of Adam and me with Lord Stanley, thanks! =D Btw, there's a whole back story on why Adam is wearing a Hawks t-shirt as opposed to a Hawks jersey. Will have to tell you more about it the next time we catch up.

      Ah yes, Prairie State was the same weekend as the Chicago Marathon last year, which is exactly why I didn't run Prairie State last year. I'm pretty sure it was the same weekend as Chicago the year before, too! Tough timing competition. =D

  2. I hope your knee feels better asap!
    The chia seeds look like gnats in a cup of water.. just saying lol not that I don't eat enough bugs running as is.

    They should make running shirt chia pets. It grows with your sweat!

    1. Declan, I did think about the fact that the floating chia seeds could resemble bugs, LOL. But in some countries, bugs are considered a delicacy, right? And I've certainly consumed my fair share of bugs while running, too (especially in the early evenings, yikes!). I can imagine they must be rampant in the early mornings when you run.

      You really crack me up with all of your imaginative suggestions for runner products and training methods!!! Ever think about starting your own running product design shop? =D

  3. I use chia seeds in my smoothie. For some reason I cannot put it in my water because I will then digest so many seeds that a plant will probably grow in my stomach. Is it possible to eat too many chia seeds? Plus, I HATE the way they get stuck in my teeth.

    The fall race looks like fun. Take care of that knee. Mine hurt when I run. If it keeps hurting I will go to a doctor.

    Hope to meet up with you soon!

    1. Zenaida - I've thought many times about the potential for plants growing in my stomach. When I was a child, I was terrified of accidentally eating watermelon seeds for that very reason. =D And yes - those seeds have a huge affinity for getting stuck in your teeth indeed! I've already learned that if I'm going to eat chia seeds, to make sure that I have a mirror and a toothpick close at hand.

      Oh no, I am sorry to hear that your knee hurts, too! How long has it been bothering you? You take care of your knee, too - especially since you've got many more races on the docket still!

      I hope to meet up with you again soon, too! Let's try to do so before school starts back up for you in a few weeks, yes!?!?!? (Where has the summer gone!!!)

    2. My knees started to bother me during the RnR Chicago Half Marathon. I go back August 26. ;(

    3. August 26 - holy cow, that's just about three weeks from now! Let the final summer vacation fun commence!!!

      And hopefully since your knee pain only started recently, that it will clear up quickly too. I wish you a speedy recovery!

  4. As a kid I had a chia pet and loved it! Who knew then that the seeds were good for you? Prairie State is shaping up to be where all the cool kids will be that weekend in Oct. Yay for Stanley!

    1. Marcia! You had a Chia Pet!?!?!? Did you have one of the classics or did you have one of the newfangled character ones?!?!?

      Are you running Prairie State, too!?!?! If so, it would be awesome to catch up with you there!!! Let me know. =)

  5. Yes I am now singing the Chia pet song in my head. I have not however tried chia seeds. That is awesome that your work has so many options for your workouts..I'm jealous!

    Great pic of you and Adam!

    I have (well I guess had) a professor who has run Prairie State every year and I was talking to her about it at our schools 5k. She loves it. I think she did the full the past 2 years but is doing the half this year(?)

    I am so far behind on blogs its ridiculous (hence me commenting 9 days after the post) so you're not alone! :)

    1. Ch-ch-ch chia!!! It is a really catchy little tune, isn't it?

      Glad you like the Stanley Cup picture and thanks for the feedback on Prairie State!!! I actually considered doing the full last year as an alternative to the Chicago Marathon, but Chicago won out in the end.

      Congratulations on passing your exams!!! That's a GREAT reason to be behind on blogs. ;) We must celebrate the next time we get together!!!

  6. I've never had anything chia (not even a little) but I have heard nothing but good good things about the stuff. It just kinda freaks me out.

    And your comment about fall races, I'm right there sighing with you! Fall needs to get here already!

    1. I can certainly relate. The little chia seeds look like bugs from a distance. But when you mix them with almond milk or other good stuff, they are pretty tasty!!!

      Cheers for fall!!! I can imagine that you are looking forward to fall even more than I am, given the heat you must be dealing with in El Paso!!!