I'm sure many of you have heard people say they've never regretted a workout. No? Just me? Oookay... Well, that's how I felt tonight. I left work with every intention of hitting the gym, but when I sat down on the train to head home, I lost all desire I had to exercise. It was crisp and breezy in town but the wind was nowhere to be found when I got home. I really didn't want to work out at the gym and I knew I had to do some sort of physical activity. I decided since it was the perfect fall night I would go for a short run.
I've not run at night alone in my 'hood because I've always been worried about the lack of proper lighting and activity - Cars, people
waiting in the bushes to abduct me. I headed out with the intention of just going for a mile since I didn't really know what to expect. I felt pretty safe since I'd left my iPod at home i safety first! I was wearing pants that have reflectors on them and I was rockin' these kicks:
My special shoes
But, I really didn't know how many people would be out or what the lighting would be like. I made it out onto a fairly main street and was happy to see a lot of cars and even other runners! I really enjoyed running in the beautiful fall evening. I ended up running two miles and I didn't regret my workout! ;)
Here are some helpful safety tips for running at night (or early morning):
Be seen! Wear reflective gear
Leave the iPod at home. If you need music to run, wear only one ear bud... This is assuming you wear ear buds! :)
Bring your cell phone
Map out your route ahead of time so you know where you're going
If possible, tell a friend or family member you're going out for a run Better yet, run with a buddy! They can help you up when you trip on the sidewalk and
go ass over teakettle go flying three feet ahead! (true story!)
Do you like to run at night?
Do you stick to the main roads where there are plenty of people and lots of lighting?
Do you have any suggestions for running at night or in the early morning?
I was so hungry when I got home from work and I wanted something fast and delicious. While stretching, I took a mental inventory of what was in my fridge and I had leftover roasted pork with harvest veggies. I had already eaten this as leftovers a couple of times this week so I decided to turn the leftover veggies into a soup! I also paired the soup with a grilled cheddar and apple sandwich. It was a great meal with yummy fall flavors. Below is the "recipe" for the soup. I use quotes as I don't know the exact amounts and had to sort of fudge the numbers.
Roasted Harvest Vegetable Soup
About 3 cups of roasted veggies (butternut squash, fingerling potatoes and Brussels sprouts)
1/4 cup sweet potato puree
1/3 large onion, diced
3/4 of an apple, peeled and chopped
15 oz or so of chicken broth
1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
1 - 2 t ground ginger
Sprinkle of cinnamon
1 T maple syrup
salt & pepper
Preheat a medium saucepan and add enough oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. Add the onion and cook for about five minutes. While the onion cooks, cut up the roasted veggies if needed. Add the veggies, the apple and the puree to the onions and stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook for another 3 - 5 minutes then add the broth. Stir to combine. Add ginger, cinnamon, syrup and if necessary, salt and pepper.
This is where it gets fun! :) If you have one, take an immersion blender and blend until smooth. If you don't have one, a food processor or blender will work, but you may need to do it in batches. If using a blender or processor, be sure to cover the opening with a towel to let out some of the steam while you're pureeing the soup. Once the soup is completely smooth, add in yogurt to add a bit of creaminess. Sour cream, half & half or marscapone would work well too. Let simmer for a few minutes and taste for seasoning. Add any additional spices if necessary.
Grilled Cheddar and Apple Sandwich
2 slices of Ezekiel bread
3 slices cheddar cheese (I used Sargento reduced fat)
1/4 gala apple, thinly sliced
1 - 2 t Dijon mustard
Heat the oven to 350 and heat a small skillet lightly coated with olive oil on medium heat. Spread one side of both slices of bread with the mustard. Once the skillet is warm add one slice of bread (mustard side up). Top the bread with a slice of cheese and half the apples. Add another slice of cheese then the rest of the apples. Top with the last slice of cheese and the other slice of bread (mustard side down). Drizzle a small amount of oil on top of the sandwich. Cook on medium for a few minutes until brown and the cheese begins to melt. Flip the sandwich and cook a bit longer. Place the skillet in the oven to finish cooking, about five minutes. I like to finish cooking the sandwich in the oven to ensure it gets heated through. This paired well with the roasted veggie soup.