Weekend Stuff – Friends and Food

Vishnu’s done with all of his exams!  Next up…residency interviews.  But for now we’re going to focus on the fact that he’s FREE from his books!!!

To be completely honest, it was a little weird to see him just hanging out all weekend.  Weird and of course nice!  He even came to Trader Joe’s with me at 8:00 am on Sunday. 

Let’s rewind a bit because the weekend officially started at 5:00 pm on Friday.  Vishnu and I spent the evening at home eating butternut squash mac n’ cheese and drinking wine (ok fine, it was mostly me drinking the wine!).  I have zero pictures of dinner (or the wine), but it looked very similar to this recipe.  We used Gruyere, Monterrey Jack, and a little bit of Gouda in this version.  Delicious and even better the next day!

On Saturday I went for a run…that didn’t go as well as I wanted (I blame the wine!).  We also cleaned and lounged around for most of the morning.  I attended a volunteer event in the afternoon, and Vishnu relaxed at home. 

The absolute highlight of our day was dinner at Michael’s Genuine with our good friend Rohit.  This is a farm to table type restaurant that serves incredibly unique and fresh dishes made with seasonal ingredients.  We’ve wanted to try this place for a while now, and because a lot of the dishes are heavily meat focused, I figured it would be a better experience for Vishnu to have a fellow meat eater with us.  And I was right!  He and Rohit shared a number of dishes, and if I remember correctly, the pork belly dish was his absolute favorite.  Actually, I know I’m right because we talked about it for five minutes on our way to TJs!

R&V
MG - P&V 
My favorite was the butternut squash arancini appetizer (rice balls filled with cheese) – perfectly crispy on the outside and soft and gooey on the inside.  YUM!

arancini 
And the sweet potato sundae wasn’t half bad either!  It tasted like Thanksgiving in a glass!

sweet potato sundae 
There was no shortage of good food and good conversation!  We can’t wait to hang out with Rohit more now that he’s a Miami resident again.  In fact, Vishnu’s already planning their next meat filled dinner date!

As I mentioned, Sunday started with a trip to my favorite place – Trader Joe’s!  Speaking of my beloved grocery store, I think it’s time I do another “Favorite TJ’s products” post.  Lots of great finds this week, including tortillas made from both corn and wheat. 

On Sunday afternoon I met up with ROBIN!  I hadn’t seen her since June due to our crazy schedules, so it was wonderful to catch up on each other’s lives.  I miss her so much!  We spent almost two hours at Starbucks talking away.  I’m crossing my fingers that we end up near her for residency!  That would be incredible!

Robin 
And of course Sunday evening was filled with the one and only…football!  I also made a delicious veggie filled stir-fry and Gina’s zucchini bread – both of which I will share in an upcoming notable meals post (I’m bringing it back!). 

Happy Monday, everyone!

Who did you spend time with this weekend, and more importantly, what did y’all eat?

Words of Marital Wisdom – Part 2

About six months before my wedding, I emailed a number of my female friends/family members and asked them to send me their best marital advice.  And then I shared all of their thoughts in this post.

I loved and appreciated (and still do) all the wisdom they imparted on me!

Now two plus years later, I have a few of my own words of marital wisdom.  I’m a marriage expert after all.  Jusssssssst kidding!  An expert I am not but I do have a few things to share that go beyond the obvious (trust, love, be honest, etc.).

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  • No matter what, spend a few minutes each day laughing together.  From what I can tell, this whole marriage thing is supposed to be fun.
  • Say “I love you” as much as possible and say it like you mean it.  Even when you’re angry.  Especially when you’re angry.
  • Don’t say “I’m fine” when you’re not.  Just don’t!
  • If something is bothering you, bring it up…but be nice about it and/or inject a little humor into the conversation.
  • You can’t change your significant other, so don’t bother trying.  People only change when they themselves want to.  Instead, love, support, and appreciate.  You can’t go wrong doing those things!
  • Put your phone away whenever possible, and spend your time wisely.  Remember, your phone isn’t going anywhere.
  • Date nights are important.  Make them a priority.
  • Maintain your own hobbies, interests, etc.  Being married doesn’t mean you have to be joined at the hip for the next 50 years.
  • Don’t put romance on the back burner.  This isn’t to say that every moment has to be a romantic one but work hard to keep it alive as much as possible.
  • Compliment each other at least once everyday.  And to all my fellow women who have a hard time accepting compliments, just say thanks.
  • Two important words – thank you…say them often!
  • You’re not perfect, your significant other isn’t perfect…basically, perfection does not exist in marriage.  Always remember that!

Annnnd…that’s where my wisdom ends.  I’ll be back with more tid bits in another two years! Haha.

iPhone pics 2 008

And because I love quotes, here is one about marriage that I LOVE!

“The difference between an ordinary marriage and an extraordinary marriage is in giving just a little ‘extra’ every day, as often as possible, for as long as we both shall live.”
— Fawn Weaver

What’s the best piece of relationship advice you’ve received?

Current Workouts, Half Marathon, and Say Your Name

After getting back from Atlanta, I started putting a bit more effort into my workouts. As I’ve mentioned several times, I kind of fell off the wagon for a bit…BUT I’m back! And this is where my type A personality and love for structure come in handy!

When I got home from work last Monday, I printed out monthly calendars for October 2014-January 2015. I also printed out Hal Higdon’s intermediate half marathon training plan. And then I got to work.

Half marathon plan
After double and triple checking my ability to count back 12 weeks from January 25, I put a star next to October 27. Eek – the day my training begins! That brings me to my current workouts.

Current workouts

In my mind, October 6-27 equals a pre-half-marathon warm up period. This is my time to prep my body for what’s to come. I honestly hadn’t been running as much as I wanted over the past month, so during these three weeks, my plan is to ease my way back into regular runs and strength training workouts. So far so good.

Here’s what last week looked like:
Monday – 3.25 mile run
Tuesday – Full-body strength workout + 20 minute incline walk
Wednesday – REST!
Thursday – 3.25 mile run
Friday – Full-body strength workout + elliptical/rowing machine
Saturday – 4.5 mile run

And here’s what I have planned for this week:
Sunday – 3.25 mile walk
Monday – Full-body strength workout + 20 minute incline walk
Tuesday – 3.25 mile run
Wednesday – Full-body strength workout + elliptical
Thursday – REST
Friday – Fitness Blender Barre workout
Saturday – 4.5 mile run

And I’m hoping week three looks similar.

I’ve been logging all my runs in the Map My Run app. When I first decided to run this half, I didn’t really care about my time. I just wanted to run the whole thing. But now a part of me wants to get a little faster. I’m averaging 10 minute miles right now. My goal is to bring that down to 9:30. We’ll see how that goes!

And as far as strength training is concerned, I’ve been searching the web to find new, fun, and short workouts (YouTube, DVDs, blogs, etc.). This one is my current favorite!

Half marathon training

Miami Half Marathon
As I mentioned, I’ll be following Hal Higdon’s training plan. I was really happy with how it prepared me for my previous two runs so why mess with a good thing!

I will, however, be making small tweaks this time around. The weekend long runs will stay as is, but how I structure the week will change. I definitely want to continue with my strength workouts and some form of cross-training. As of right now, I’m thinking no more than 2-3 runs during the week.

Say Your Name

And finally, my mom shared an NPR article with me last week titled “Why Saying is Believing – The Science of Self-Talk.” The article addresses some really interesting research on how self-talk and the words we use impact how we see ourselves.

Towards the end of the article, the researchers talk about how referring to yourself in the third person has a powerful effect on performance. It turns out that we’re a lot more supportive and kinder to ourselves when we say our name versus “I.”

I decided to put this finding into practice during my next run, which just so happened to be the 4.5 miler on Saturday. Around the two mile mark, I felt the urge to walk. So I said to myself, “Come on, Parita, you made the decision to run the entire time today. You can do it!” And then again, at the 3.5 mile mark I really felt like walking, but I didn’t. Instead, I said to myself, “Parita you are stronger than you believe. You can do this. Only one more mile to go!”

And guess what. I didn’t walk at all. I ran the entire 4.5 miles at a pretty decent pace. As crazy as it seems to refer to yourself in the third person, I see why it’s so powerful. When I did it during my run, it felt like someone else was cheering me on – a much nicer person who really believed in my capabilities.

I know it sounds a little kooky, but try it…perhaps during your next workout or before an important presentation/test/interview/meeting.

Do you have any races coming up?
Do you plan out your weekly workouts or do you prefer to go with the flow?