Monday, January 18, 2010

Training for Half Marathon - Days 6, 7, & 8

DAY 6 - Saturday
      Saturday was the day I started cutting the last of my wisdom teeth, and thus, was reduced to smoothies, juices, clementines, and melons. Any sort of intense chewing would leave my whole jaw throbbing, so I consumed more fruits the usual, but I still had a green grape smoothie to get my Popeye fuel! :-D LOL.
     As for my half marathon training, Saturday was wet, rainy, and COLD! I spent the entire day indoors on my computer and nursing my aching mouth. In the evening I spent 30 minutes doing a series of calisthenic and aerobic exercise with a little some weights thrown into a few exercises.

DAY 7 - Sunday
     On my training schedule was a 4 mile run, but with my knee problems I have to have an extra "low key" day, otherwise my knee joints start to ache. Instead I went for a 35 minute, 4 mph walk with my mom at the mall. Up the stairs and down the stairs we went! I'm sure many of the people at the mall thought we were on something, which we were. That something is called raw food! :-D

DAY 8 - Monday (Today)
     This morning I had another appointment with my chiropractor. He had examined my x-rays and confirmed that the left side of my hip was "off center" so to speak which has been causing the misdistribution of pressure on my knees, thus the discomfort. So over a course of sessions every couple of days, he will be repositioning my left hip by manually "popping" it into a new position and following it up with electro hot and cold therapy. He also recommends doing some physical therapy to strengthen my knee joints and increase the flexibility in my upper legs as he gradually repositions the left side of my hip.

     Today was an unusually warm day (61 degrees F) so I took my dog, Charlie, out for a walk/run around the neighborhood before practicing my karate forms in the garage with my brother.

     My wisdom teeth are almost fully in now. I know this is going to give my dentist a bit of a surprise the next time I go see him in his office, he said that my last two wisdom teeth were stuck beneath my gums and weren't ever going to surface. What can I say? I am just full of surprises. *chuckle*

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Training for Half Marathon - Days 4 & 5

DAY 4 - Thursday
     Thursdays training was the hardest yet with a three mile run plus strength training. Not so bad in theory but when your legs are sore from the last two days of running and for the first third of the run was on a slight incline, it was a bit more challenging.
      I do think though, that this run was the best work out I have had in a quite a while. The only downside to the day really was the aching in my mouth. When I arrived home I had my mom take a look and apparently the last of my wisdom teeth are coming in.
     After my strength training that evening, I made a big batch of my favorite low-fat Cheesy Tomato Tahini dip to have with a bunch of raw veggies ( a heart of romaine, okra, carrots, celery, cucumber, sprouts, tomato) for dinner. I dip the carrots, celery, and okra in the dip and put some of the dip on top of the sprout and tomato "tacos" I make with the romaine leaves. This is probably my favorite savory veggie dinner of all time! Only problem was tonight, after finishing my meal my entire mouth/jaw began to throb relentlessly. It looks like I am going to be on a liquid diet until my teeth are finished coming through. Apparently chewing makes the aching worse.


  • Walking - 0.87 miles (4.5 mph)
  • Running - 2.5 miles (1.5 miles at 6.6 mph + 1 mile at 7.0 mph)
Time: 40 minutes

Calories Burned: 250

Recovery Meal: 1 Quart Green Grape Smoothie


Strength Training:
  • Weight Lifting - vigorously for 15 minutes
Calories Burned: 81

Recover Meal: Veggies with Cheesy Tomato Tahini Dip

DAY 5 - Friday
     Friday was a rest day, which couldn't have been better timed as I had loads of things to get done that day. At 10 am I had my appointment with my chiropractor, and it's possible that the pain in my knees are being caused by a problem with the right side of my hip. The chiropractor took a couple x-rays of my hip and Monday I will be going back in to see what he has found.
     Normally I wouldn't agree to getting x-rays done due to the radiation, but if an x-ray is needed in order to better understand a problem then I am alright with that. X-rays are useful, I just don't believe in taking an unneeded x-rays. In fact, the only x-rays I have ever had until now have been of mouth at the dentist, and even then, I believe I have only had them x-rayed a handful of times through out my life time. 
     The rest of the day was spent  completing the last of my college applications and sending them off, and running to the local grocery stores (Ingles and Kroger) to pick up a few odds and ends for the weekend:
    • Green Grapes
    • Pineapple
    • 170g of Golden Raspberries (what a find!)
    • Clementines
    • Frozen Blueberries
    • Frozen Strawberries
    • Frozen Peaches
    • Cabbage (to make some veggie soup for my mom)
    • Yellow Squash (also for my mom's veggie soup)
    • Canned Aduki Beans (for veggie soup)
    • Tofurky sandwich slices (for my brother)
    • So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Ice Cream (for my brother)
       I have to be honest and say that the Golden Raspberries didn't even make to the end of the day! LOL. I though together an probiotic anti-inflammatory smoothie with them for a snack that might help alleviate the throbbing that was currently going on in my mouth.  I shared some of it with my mom and she loved it! :-) And it made the throbbing ache in my mouth recede in intensity almost instantly.

Golden Cream Dream Smoothie
- 1 3/4 C. Pineapple, chopped
- 170 g (6oz.) Golden Raspberries_
- 1/2 Tbs. Raw Honey
- 1 Tbs. Raw Probiotic Coconut Yogurt
- 1/2 Tsp. vanilla (optional)

      I have got to say that I cannot wait until March! So much exciting stuff will be going on for both my family and I. March is the month I will know what colleges I have been accepted to, the month I run my half marathon, and the month where my mom and I travel to Arizona to look for a house to move into!! I think that is what keeps me going, knowing that things might be same old  right now, but a new adventure is awaiting me just around the corner, All I need do is be patient.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Training for Half Marathon - Days 2 & 3

DAY TWO - Tuesday
     Day two of my training went very well. I haven't done any serious running for a few months so it was a bit of a system shock for me this first round. However, I managed to run the required two miles on my training schedule. 
     Since I really want to do this right and not injure myself (particularly the knee area) I've been doing some research on the best ways to warm up before a work out, and how to cool down afterwards. Before my run Tuesday I walked at 4.5 mph pace for ten minutes to stretch out my limbs and get the blood flowing before breaking out into a 6.6 mph run. I maintain that speed until my lungs can no longer keep up with the pace. When this happens I slow back down to 4.5 mph just long enough to catch my breath before breaking out into a 6.6 run again. I cool down by doing some light stretching outside without my jacket. 


  • Walking - 0.5 miles
  • Running - 2.0 miles
Time: 30 minutes

Calories Burned: 175

Recovery Meal: 1 Quart Green Grape Smoothie

DAY THREE - Wednesday

     I woke up this morning with my legs feeling a bit sore, nothing to bad, but I did not want to go out for a run at all. However,  I knew that if I could keep this routine going for at least a week, that my body would become more accustomed to this new work out regime. If I really wanted to do this half marathon I needed to kick start myself into gear.  So, I got up and went for my run and felt so good afterwards! Sticking with something really leaves oneself with a great sense of accomplishment.

Walking Pace: 4.5 mph
Running Pace: 6.6 mph

  • Walking - 0. 5 miles
  • Running - 2.68 miles
Time: 35 minutes

Calories Burned: 224

Recovery Meal: 1 Quart Green Smoothie

Crucial to Muscle Repair

     Just recently, Brendan Brazier, a former ironman triathlete and author of The Thrive Diet, wrote an article in the latest addition of Get Fresh magazine entitled Plant Power: How to build muscle on a vegan diet. Since I'm hoping not just to gain better running stamina during my training, but also to gain more lean muscle mass, this article caught my eye. I read the whole article and agreed with what Brendan said 100%. 

The Way to add extra protein to the diet, while not increasing fat or carbohydrate content, is to mechanically or chemically remove the fat and carbohydrate. What remains is called protein isolate. The protein has been isolated from the other macronutrients of the food and, as such, its ratio has increased. Some manufactured isolates register protein content in excess of 90%. But once isolated, it is no longer a whole food and therefore harder for the body to digest, assimilate and utilize. Plus protein isolates are inherently acid-forming. And with the onset of an acidic body, functionality declines.

     Think about it, when you exercise your body has a build up of lactic acid, making muscles stiff and sore after a work out if measures aren't taken to minimize the build up. Yet mainstream health propaganda has fooled many a health lover (including many a raw foodie) into putting protein isolate powders into our post workout smoothies to help us rebuild our muscles. Instead, the protein isolate isn't properly breaking down into the bloodstream and is adding more acid into our already lactic acid secreting muscles creating inflammation. This, as many of us know, can be detrimental in or overall physical well being. It is crucial to have a whole food and alkaline based, post work out meal in order to counteract the acid in our bodies after exercise.

In place of isolates and acid-forming foods, there are a host of plant-based options that will ensure inflammation is kept to a minimum - leafy greens and hemp seeds are just two options. While protein is a crucial component for muscle repair and building, so too are essential fatty acids (omega-3 and omega-6), vitamins, minerals, enzymes, probiotics, antioxidants and a host of other nutritional components that can be found in a variety of plant-based foods.

     Eating a variety of nutritionally dense whole food is important for everybody. It is however, a bit more crucial to those who have decided to take their physical fitness to the next level. Drink more green smoothies, eat lots fresh fruits, eat more salads, try some raw coconut probiotic yogurt, and enjoy some avocados, nuts,  and seeds in moderation. Fuel your body with whole foods that have a built in, balanced ratio of carbs, proteins, and fat. Yahweh created the foods of this earth with the correct nutrient ratios for our body to easily consume, assimilate, and absorb into our bodies.

P.S. Want to see my workout schedule? Do you live in Georgia and want to run a half marathon? Check out the link below to see them.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Training for Half Marathon - Day 1

     Ever since going raw and becoming more physically active I have wanted to try running a half marathon. However, my life just wasn't able to make room for it until now. So on March 21, 2009 I will be running a half marathon race with my best friend Terra for the very first time!

     The half marathon is in 69 days (including today), and I have training schedule that lasts that amount of time. I will be following it as closely to the letter as possible. The only change I am making to it may be which days to be the rest days, but with a little bit of smart juggling around I can fit this training into my life for the next couple of months.

     Yesterday (January 11th) was my first day of training and the schedule called for stretching and strength training. I accomplished this by doing 30 minutes of stretching, 8 minutes of sit-ups and push-ups, and 22 minutes of weight circuits.

This whole project has me really excited! I can't wait to reach my goal!!
Wish me luck.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Of Recipes and Poetry

     Just felt like sharing another recipe with all of you. Try this on banana, apple, or celery. It really is delicious!

     This is a sample piece from the poetry book I am writing. I hope to get it published by the end of this year.

BY: Amanda Berg
As the shadows begin to fade at the coming of the dawn,
I watch as the mist of morning rolls along,
Introduced into existence of the bluebirds song.
Life can be beautiful when it wants to.
Like the beauty of the ground of jade covered in glittering dew.

Hold onto everything that is good,
Shower yourself and others with laughter,
To forbid the moment of a doomsday mood.
Sometimes life presents us with sorrow
I just cling to the hope that it will be better tomorrow.

Wherever the path I’m taking goes
I know in my heart and mind
God is the one who I can trust to follow.
With him I know all will be well at the end.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Green Grape Smoothie

     Finally! I've been planning on making this video for ages, but have kept putting it off for reasons unknown to me. Here it is though, I hope you can gain something from this video. 

     Au revoir! :-)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Hello 2010!!

     Can you believe it?! We are all now getting settled into the year  2010, and this is my very first blog post for this brand new year! Let me tell you that this January has been FREEZING!! Mind you, I know that there are quite a few places in the U.S. that are much much colder than here, but for me, it is more than uncomfortably cold. Still, I have not allowed myself to use the nippy temperature to give me an excuse not to get outside and MOVE. It may be cold out, but it's also bright and sunny (Vitamin D baby!).

     This weekend I spent loads of time freezing my little bum off outdoors! LOL. :-D Saturday I went for a 30 minute walk/run (trying to increase my running distance) before going to the park with my mom, brother, and our two dogs (Charlie and Penny. Love them bunches!) to go for a 30 minute walk. By the time we all got back to the car, body temperature wise, I was actually feeling quite comfortable as I was wearing my new insulated outdoor running jacket. My poor mom, however, had by then lost all feeling in her hands and toes. Before we left we also took the time to set Charlie loose on the geese that had gathered in the field. That dog had a ball!! Hehehe. . . it's the sheep dog in him I

How my brother managed to stay warm in nothing but a long sleeved t-shirt and a hoodie is beyond me.

     Sunday, my mom and I did our routine grocery trip. We went to Whole Foods and Rainbow, stocking up on all the good stuff:

  • Blood Oranges
  • Red and Green Grapes
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Blackberries
  • Persimmons
  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Pineapples
  • Tomatoes
  • Leafy Greens - Spinach, Romaine Butterhead
  • Celery
  • Okra
  • Bell Pepper
  • Fresh Coconut Water
  • Raw probiotic coconut yogurt
  • Raw Tahini
     After coming home and unloading all the goodies, I grabbed some Persimmons and headed off to pick up my friend Terra to go (drum roll please)  ICE SKATING!! Woohoo! :-D We skated for about an hour until we were chilled to the bone and had blisters from the renter skated before walking around the town taking random pictures of our chilled selves and whatever else we came across until my mom came to pick us up.

Winter's Beauty

     We stopped of at Starbucks to chat over tea and coffee while we warmed up. I felt so excited when Terra expressed interest in raw food!! So happy that one of my friends is really open to the idea and not so skeptical on its validity. She actually expressed interest in trying a green smoothie instead of wrinkling her nose at the mention. It pays to have opened minded people as friends.

     This morning was sunny but I just didn't feel up to braving the cold again. I settled instead to do weight circuit training indoors. Let me tell you, my muscles are going to be feeling it tomorrow! It was worth it though, a good workout always is. :-) 

     My college applications are well on there way to being finished. I have the applications all filled, almost all my college packets assembled, and all but two of the supplement essays completed. All that's left is for me get Paragon Academy to send out my transcripts and pick up my teacher recommendations. The deadline for all this stuff to get sent out is January 15th, so I do believe I am right on schedule.

     So far this year is off to a pretty good start. I have a good feeling about this year for me and I think a lot of adventure is in store! Until next post, may Yahweh love you and keep you all the days of you life!