Tag Archives: Starbucks

The Chobani Principle

Surround yourself with dreamers, doers, and believers. But, most of all, surround yourself with those who see greatness within you, even when you don’t see it yourself.- Sheila Gerald
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Nutritional benefits aside, Chobani tastes amazing!! It always pairs best with my other love, coffee (especially Starbucks)

 

 

I am Jessica and I have become a Chobani addict. I absolutely love their Greek Yogurt. In fact, to make it affordable, I buy it by the truckloads at Costco. I have been known to make special trips to Costco just to ensure that my supply never runs low. The highlight of my January was that both Target and Giant Eagle had Chobani on sale at different moments, opening up the opportunity for me to explore and indulge in the flavors not offered in the Costco superbox.

Upon opening up my Chobani this morning, (which by the way is a perfect pre-run food item) , and promptly licking off any excess yogurt that stuck to the lid (I am that person), I had a flash of inspiration. What if I approached everything in my life like I approach Chobani yogurt? It may seem like my daily Chobani obsession was easy to come by, but in fact, my relationship with it started very tumultuously.

I have always been a lover of yogurt and a calorie counter. Even when I was at my highest weight and was totally out of shape, I was still aware of every calorie that I consumed. I was never mindless about my destructive choices. That being said, I was locked into eating “Light and Fit” yogurt because it was 80 calories and fat free. I kept hearing about Greek yogurt and all of its benefits, and yet I just kept eating the yogurt that had little to no protein and that had artificial sweetners just because it was 80 calories versus the 140 in most Chobani individual fruit cups.

How many things in life do we get stuck on, even good choices, when something great is out there waiting for us but we refuse to even try? “Light and Fit” was a good choice, but Chobani has turned out to be a great choice. Chobani leaves you feeling full, the flavor is much richer, and it has more of all of the good stuff that your body needs. (I was NOT compensated at all for this post. In fact, nobody at Chobani even knows I exist.)

The Chobani principle, which I invented in case you didn’t know, has turned out to be a small step to a lot of big change. I had honestly never eaten Quinoa, Hummus, or a whole other host of body nourishing and delicious items before because I was stuck on eating “diet” foods and ate what was familiar.  It is an educational experience to learn that not  all health foods are diet foods. In fact, chia seeds have an enormous amount of calories and almonds are chock full of fat. There are a lot of good things in life, like calorie counting and watching what you put in your body, but there are even greater things like focusing on your health and achieving specific wellness goals. There are containers of Chobani in every area of your life just waiting for you to peel the lid off and give it a shot.

Can you believe that I used to cook and serve Minute White Rice for my family and myself? I am horrified every time I think of it. My 899 pound bag of organic brown rice that I buy at Costco tastes so much better, fuels our bodies, and the only change it required for me was to actually buy a rice cooker and realize that minute rice might have been a good choice for one season, but greater choices were out there.

FYI: Rice cooked in a rice cooker is infinitely more delicious that what is cooked on the stove or microwaved in some lab generated instant package.

I guess the point I’m getting at is that the Chobani Principle applies to everything. What paradigm shift do you need to make (for example obsessing about calories at the expense of true health and nutrition) that will take you to the next level? What products do you have brand loyalty to that might not be the best option for you and your long-term mind, body, spirit goals?

Paradigm shifts that I’ve encountered since turning 30:

  • I used to hate running and could never run even a mile—I’m now a marathoner.
  • I used to obsess about my weight all the while watching it creep up or yo-yo everywhere—–I now stay within a 3-5 pound range with minimal “extra” effort (I still count every calorie and run like a crazy person so I guess some of you think that’s way more than minimal “extra” effort, but it’s really not. It’s habit now.)
  • I used to think texting was horrible and didn’t even have it on my cell phone plan. I mean, why can’t you just call me?——I finally added it to my plan and now hate being called. Hooray for convenience!
  • I used to obsessively clean up every single item my kids played with and dragged out without concern of the stories they would tell their therapist about Type A mom one day—–I now wait until they are on the bus to restore the order I need or wait until Sunday night/Monday morning before I take everything they own and hide it somewhere. They actually are now allowed to play in the family room and have books and toys in there and their therapist can be regaled with stories of how cool and fun mom is instead of how she was obsessively cleaning 24/7. It’s almost like they live in their own home and have rights associated with that just like I do… Fancy that!!

As you can see, there are many ways to apply the Chobani principle. How will you step out of your comfort zone today to see long-term goals realized?

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Shameless bragging in 3, 2, 1……….Both boys had parent/teacher conferences yesterday and both boys are rocking out in academics and behavior at school. Maybe I gave them just enough of my Type A to succeed, but not enough to cause psychological distress 🙂

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How to Avoid Terrifying Toilets

If it is important enough to you, you will find a way. If it is not, you will find an excuse. 

(Mantra’s like this have gotten me through many tough days. Since life has no do-overs, don’t waste it with excuses!)

Many said it couldn’t be done. Today (May 7) in 1954 Rodger Banister proved them wrong by running a mile in sub-4 minutes. Impossible things happen.

I mentioned that I wanted to do a brief recap of the Capital City Half Marathon Race Expo and Race day.  The Capital City Marathon really is a great race to participate in. Everyone is nice, the crowd support is enthusiastic, the course takes you through all the main highlights of Columbus, and you get to chill with around 14,000 of your closest friends. Thankfully all three years that I have run the Cap Half have been accompanied by decent weather. This year was special though to me because, not only did I PR, but it was the first race that I have run side by side my main squeeze. He generally is a faster runner than me, so we hit all the expos together and hang out around the port a john’s, but then we split ways about 1 mile into the run. This time, he paced me through like a champ, bringing back memories of his stellar delivery room coaching skills when we had our 2 sons. Having a good looking man by my side to distract me and yell at me when needed, was just what the doctor ordered.

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The hero the day before the race. Somehow, he still manages to look this good even after a long run though. Guys are so lucky. Not a hair moves out of place.
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At about 6:15 AM on Race Day Morning, I knew the running weather Gods were smiling at us.

20130506-130256.jpg20130506-130350.jpgJonathan finding out the root of all of his problems from this nice sports medicine professional. Too bad they didn’t have a mental health professional. We would’ve been there a while! 🙂20130506-130405.jpg20130506-142200.jpgAs a side note, isn’t it funny how when I don’t have my kids with me, Jonathan becomes my object of obsession again? I guess I need someone to dote on and take copious pictures of. Love my men.

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Getting it all ready the night before. I love my spibelt by the way. No more safety pins ripping my nice technical shirts. My race day bib just hangs on to the belt and I can stash all of my essentials in it too. If I have any say in it, I will be bringing back the fanny pack. All runners know how amazing a good hip purse is.

Here are glimpses into the race day Expo. If you have never done a medium to large city race, you need to. It will most definitely provide you with the motivation that you need to keep exercising. It is so inspiring to see all of the people from all sizes, shapes, skin colors, countries, and back grounds come together to achieve a moment of personal greatness. Not everyone will win a major sports championship, but almost everyone can cross the finish line of a large race feeling like they are surrounded by adoring fans. Small town 5K’s and gimmick runs do not provide this same feeling of Olympic stardom, but they can be a good place to start. I really hope that I can inspire you to run. I have found nothing that helps balance my mind, body, and spirit for maximization like running does. (Riding my bike is a pretty close second, but running is still my go to.)

Race expos are a great place to find and purchase running gear. I got my Mother’s Day gift early, a new pair of Brook’s Adrenaline GTS-13. Jonathan finagled us an even better deal than the rock bottom price they were already offering since we were buying two pairs. The His and Her shoes are our big holiday gift to each other. Yes, we are weird and frugal.

The main expense involved in running is keeping your feet blanketed in appropriate wear. I have flat feet, bunions, and a whole host of other foot related issues, so if I didn’t spring for shoes I would be bed ridden or crippled. I try to buy my shoes at the cheapest possible prices. I have purchased them from race expos, zappos, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Nordstrom Rack depending on who has the lowest prices at the moment of my need. This requires some sleuth skills, but even with nice tennis shoes every 4-5 months (depending on the mileage I’m running), running is infinitely cheaper than risking my health. (Remember my dad was in his 30’s when his kidneys failed and he had complications of diabetes and heart disease leading to his death at 51). I must stay in shape and keep my weight down. I always tell myself this isn’t about my appearance, it is literally life or death. I guess I’m blessed in a morbid way to already have a view of the grave and my mortality at only 33 years old. After all the Bible says “Teach us to number our days and make our days count.”

20130506-142142.jpgPeeking at the finish line and getting excited for the after party. Seriously, who ordered the weather we had over the weekend? Good job!

Pre-Race Fuel:  Bagel with Grape Jelly and some Mixed Fruit and a Small amount of coffee and water

You want to be hydrated and caffeinated, but you want to avoid stopping at the potty during the race if you want to PR, and you discover that the pre-race bathroom lines are INSANE, so you only want to wait in line and go as few times as possible. I was totally shocked at my first official race by the bathroom scene. It is also common and accepted practice at these events to discuss your personal number 1’s and 2’s with total strangers. It is like being at a “Mommy and Me” meeting where women discuss ultra personal health, hygeine, and birthing stories with each other. Don’t be grossed out though. You can learn a lot about how to be a better runner by learning to fuel, hydrate, and go to the bathroom well.

During race fuel: A Mandarin Orange Flavored GU and Gatorade or Water at fuel stations as needed (Seriously you haven’t lived until you have gotten a drink at a fuel station. Watch up for cups flying into your face, friendly volunteers, and people getting tangled with each other.)

Post Race Recovery: Water, Free Panera Bread Cinnamon Crunch Bagel (heaven handed out at the finish line), Coke Zero, and Coffee

I can guarantee you that the Capital City Half marathon toilets weren’t near as scary as a toilet I used on Sunday. The bathroom was full of advertisements on getting screened for HIV and STD’s. It definitely brings comfort to your soul to know that the majority of people using these public toilets with you are living lifestyles that would urge them to get frequent tests on their bodily fluids.

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What is your worst public bathroom experience?

Any race day hydrating or fueling strategies that you would like to share?

What is your favorite recovery beverage after a long run? I always crave caffeine, so it is an ice cold soda (preferably Coke Zero even though it has ZERO nutritional value) or coffee once I’ve had my water or a sports drink with electrolytes as needed.

How to run a mile

You can’t grow if you can’t be uncomfortable.-@leadershipfreak

Growth moments occur with one foot on solid ground and one foot firmly in midair. Growth happens “where the sidewalk ends.”

The bottom line is that you can’t do anything if you first don’t start. Two and a half years ago I couldn’t even run one mile from start to finish and was 55 pounds larger than I am today. Saturday I will run my 6th official half marathon race (I’ve also raced a full). Contrast that to this morning when I ran 1.5 miles just to keep my run streak alive (the powers that be usually recommend a complete rest day before a race) and literally felt like I had done absolutely nothing. Two and half years ago I would’ve wept at running a solid 1.5 miles, and now it felt like almost a waste of all the time and effort it took to put my clothes and tennis shoes on, but keeping the run streak alive is no joke! Keeping these 55 pounds off and toning up a body marred by two pregnancies and 14,000 years of yo-yo dieting is no small task. This girl is on fire. I’m not letting anyone slow my go. I’ve come to far to turn back now. (I think I have the makings of a political speech. Please vote for me. I’m Citizen of the Year.)

20130503-101634.jpg Because I have learned that you are all dying to know what I eat, when I go to the restroom, and the temperature that I like the room set at, I didn’t want to forget to leave you with these nuggets of information. In keeping with the part-time vegetarian lifestyle, once my Daniel Fast was over this week (the Daniel Fast is more vegan than vegetarian), I had an amazing egg sandwich for lunch. This is my go to lunch 4/7 days a week usually, unless I’m on one of my nut butter kicks. I get my protein. It tastes delicious. It is very filling. And, it has the health muscle building fats and complete yada yada yada that you need to thrive. I add one serving of cheese on the egg and place it on two slices of whole grain bread with a serving of strawberry jelly. It will change your life. Try it ASAP.

20130503-101640.jpgRaising the kiddos as part-time Vegemite’s too. They don’t know it though. They just like the healthy food to make them big and strong. Food always tastes better on a cartoon plate. Look at all this protein and body building fruit from Gentry’s snack/lunch combo yesterday. Yum.

20130503-101651.jpgOne of two of my favorite athletes.

My delicious breakfast today! A perfectly healthy and delicious carb loading oppourtunity.
My delicious breakfast today! A perfectly healthy and delicious carb loading opportunity.

Full disclosure: I followed that gorgeous plate with a bagel and jelly. I definitely think that extra glycogen will buy me a first place win.

My first full fat, whole milk cappucino since the fall. I'm not going to lie, the foam is amazing with whole milk.
My first full fat, whole milk cappuccino since the fall. I’m not going to lie, the foam is amazing with whole milk. Good thing I ran a whole mile this morning.

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Before you are jealous of what you perceive to be my at home coffee bar and perfectly crafted breakfast, you must be made aware that I’m out of town for a business trip that coincided beautifully on the calendar, in the same city, with my Half Marathon tomorrow (a Race and Expo Recap will be going down on the blog) at a hotel with unlimited Starbucks coffee. I caution all citizens to be on high alert because by 8 AM this morning I was about a gallon of the goodness into my day. I “hydrate” so well for races. I’m following all of the rules. I mean, certainly coffee is better than water correct? It’s a bean!

I love it when business and pleasure piggyback. Isn’t that what life is-a mesh of mind, body, spirit, work, and play?

Seed, Lead, Run, Eat, Repeat: I love the cycle.

Learn when to work, when to play, and when to rest. It isn’t weird at all that I consider running 13.1 miles rest. Mind. Body. Spirit.

He who gathers in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps in harvest is a son who brings shame. (Proverbs 10:5 ESV)

Ok, now I want a vacation. Seed, Lead, Run, Eat, Repeat. Fly away to Australia for 3 weeks (I wish)

How do you make sure that your work involves play and your play includes work? We don’t want any workaholics or sloths. We were created for so much more than the extremes.

Bikram Running

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There will never be a day when we wont need dedication,discipline,energy,and the feeling that we can change things for the better -GS

After a very late night, and the fifth night in a row that I’ve slept only a handful of hours, I unwittingly embarked on a round of Bikram running, or you could call it sauna city. If you are not familiar with Bikram, it is a type of yoga that you do in a room set to 2,345 degrees, give or take a degree or two, and is designed to detoxify you. Why anyone does this is beyond me, and when you add the fact that running is like increasing the external temperature 20 degrees no matter what the setting (they say to dress 20 degrees warmer when you run), and the fact I am just a salty sweatband wearing gal anyway, it was a recipe for disaster. I don’t know why the local YMCA thinks 80 degrees is an acceptable cardio room temperature, but my 76 year old work out buddies love it.
The above quote applied today in a huge way. I was on top of the world on my run yesterday, and today I felt like a beached whale plodding through quicksand. Today the dedication and discipline kicked in long before the energy did. Thank God I’m on the taper for the Capital City Half Marathon in Columbus, Ohio next week so all I had on the agenda was a 4 mile run and 1 mile walk. The good thing about short running is it is short. The bad thing about short running is that by the time you are warmed up and ready to sprint to your gold medal, you are done. I’m more of an endurance runner than I am a sprinter, so, as weird as it sounds, I prefer distances of 6 miles plus. (Depending on where I’m at in my training schedule) I do enjoy my 5K speedwork days though, when I’m not in a sauna, not hopped up on 45 pots of coffee, and not mentally/physically exhausted. (so basically once a year. ha. just kidding)

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Being forced to run on the treadmill when the sun is brightly shining outside always makes your run so much more enthusiastic. I mean, who wouldn’t be energized by this view?
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Glancing at Sophia Vergara while being stimulated with pop tempo beats helped me push through. I mean, I could look like her by pushing through to the end of my run, or look like Jessica circa 2010 pre-running. The choice is clear. Run towards Sophia!
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The husband was out of town, thus forcing me on the treadmill. I couldn’t get up early and get my run in and leave my kids home alone because he wasn’t there. Therefore, since Gentry had PM school today instead of AM, I had to drag him to child watch at the YMCA while I drug my pitiful self onto the treadmill. Notice how I piled up the pillows creating a fluffy husband so I could have the illusion of safety while I slept last night.

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The best part of waking up, besides being alive, Chobani and Starbucks.

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Continuing the birthday celebrations…..bye bye edible arrangement. We wiped that arrangement out in about 35 seconds. We are full time sugar seekers, but I like to make it sound healthy and say we are part time fruitarians. (Fruitarians will eat only what falls (or would fall) naturally from a plant). It has nothing to do with our love of carbohydrates.

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I could not be more proud of Gentry for choosing the chocolate covered fruit over the regular fruit. He is a smart cookie.

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A glimpse of last night’s quick dinner, the result of having to rush Reese right off the bus and into the car to attend an all evening event.

Notice, my husband returned home today bearing snacks. Between the Chick Fil A and the snack pack, the post birthday clean eating is going tremendously well. At least I’ll have well stocked glycogen stores for the Capital City Half marathon.

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Here is Gentry when I picked him up from school today. He is sporting his brand new Angry Birds glasses. I had to go to Target to pick up some essentials, and in staying true to what I know to be righteous and holy, I had to purchase something not on my list. I find it preferable, nay mandatory, to purchase extras every time I go into Target. I am still trying to witness this doctrine to my husband, but he is having trouble converting. In keeping with our Dave Ramsey lifestyle, I must disclose that Gentry really did need a pair of sun glasses that fit his head. Last year’s glasses were cutting off his vision and circulation.

The new sunglasses have nothing to do with Gentry’s top 3 quotes (unsolicited mind you) of the day today:

1) Mom, you can’t finish listening to our daily bible reading plan when I’m in school. Save the last chapter for when I’m done. (We are on day 105 of a You Version Read through the Bible program that we listen to together daily.)

2) “You are a Super Mom”

3) “Mom, your hair is so long and silky that I can’t quit touching it”

I am not exaggerating or lying about any of the above quotes. If you know Gentry, you know he’s a heart breaker.

For our comments section, have you ever been really proud of yourself? Besides the fact that I punched my run today in the face even though it was fighting back hard, I met a chiropractor last night in a social setting and did not ask him to crack my back. This is a sure sign of maturity. I really wanted to have him work his magic on me, even though he was a total stranger and we were in a large crowd. I am very proud of the fact that I resisted asking him to perform free services on me.

I am also proud of the fact that I have been such an amazing witness for Christ that a mom at Gentry’s pre-school knew it was me driving the wrong direction because of my “The Bridge Church” car magnet on my van. I’m letting my little light shine!

What are you proud of?

Are you a “fruitarian” too?