I’m originally from the midwest. I grew up in Ohio, went to college in Illinois and then grad school in Minnesota. I haven’t even been in Texas for two years yet. I should be used to a little cold weather – or a lot of it. But it dropped down to 40 degrees for my run tonight, and my blood has thinned out. And it’s supposed to drop below freezing tonight! Did you know, in Texas, you’re supposed to cover your pipes when the temperature goes below freezing? And leave a faucet running over night? This is all new to me.
It was a cold run with Maggie tonight. My speedwork was scheduled for tomorrow, but the nice thing about running just four times a week is that it allows for some flexibility. And tonight worked better for both of our schedules. The plan was to run quarter mile intervals – a quarter mile slow/recovery followed by a fast quarter mile – five times, for a total of 2.75 miles. Since this was the plan, I decided to set my Garmin for quarter mile laps – you can really see the difference between the speed laps and the recovery laps. I’m including the pace for the “fast” intervals:
- Lap 1: 2:45
- Lap 2: 2:00 (8:00)
- Lap 3: 2:45
- Lap 4: 2:01 (8:04)
- Lap 5: 3:06 – beginning to walk some during recovery
- Lap 6: 2:03 (8:12)
- Lap 7: 3:15
- Lap 8: 2:10 (8:40)
- Lap 9: 3:36 – walking more of recovery!
- Lap 10: 2:02 (8:08)
- Lap 11: 2:52
- Total: 28:35 (10:24 average pace)
Our goal was to keep the fast pace under 9 minutes, and I wasn’t worried about the recovery pace. This was much better than my last quarter mile speed workout, just two weeks ago. Speedwork is rough, but I’m glad it’s over for the week!
My dinner tonight was created from weekend leftovers. On Sunday we had a couple over to watch a football game. It was a “goodbye” dinner of sorts, so I wanted to make it special. I served vegetarian appetizers such as:
Veggies, Chips and Dip (red pepper hummus, spinach and artichoke dip & salsa)
Hungry Girl Jalapeno Poppers (made with low-fat cream cheese, low-fat cheddar cheese and panko bread crumbs, baked in the oven for 30 min)
(Vegetarian) Hungry Girl Cocktail Weenies
Not pictured were Hungry Girl potato skins and a delicious coffee-based chili, which I plan to feature in a separate post. But the star of tonight’s dinner were the HG cocktail weenies.
Cooked in the slow cooker for 3-4 hours, they were really easy to make. Instead of hot dogs, I used veggie hot dogs. Also, I didn’t read the ingredients list closely enough, and only bought a package of 5 hot dogs, instead of the 14 that the recipe called for. Therefore, I had a lot of leftover sauce.
The sauce was delicious. I’m hesitant to post the exact recipe (it’s not mine!), but it included chili sauce, sugar-free blackberry jelly, chopped onion and a little Dijon mustard. You can find the detailed recipe in Hungry Girl’s Happy Hour book, which my sister got me for Christmas.
For a quick and protein-filled dinner tonight, I made 1 cup of couscous to mix with my leftover weenies and sauce.
Then, to increase the protein, and because I thought it would be tasty, I heated up 4 Morning Star sausage patties.
Quick story about these sausage patties – I recently went out for brunch at a restaurant and ordered veggie sausage patties instead of the meat patties that would normally have come with my meal. When they brought them out, I thought they looked so real, I asked my husband to take a taste to make sure they were not meat. He assured me they were fine, and then I tasted them – too dead on to be fake. I asked our server where they got the veggie patties from, and he said they were Morning Star. That afternoon, I found them on sale at Costco – they are a fabulous substitute for the real thing!
I broke up the sausage and mixed it into the pot. The result was a delicious and fast dinner.
I love week night dinners that take just 10-15 minutes to make! What is your favorite week night dinner?