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Healthy Turkey Chili

Turkey Chili:  serves a lot!  Make this huge pot and freeze batches for later.

This is my take on my Mom’s delicious chili.  I reduced the amount of meat, added more veggies and more beans.

  • 1 package of 99% lean ground turkey breast (I always use Jennie-O)
  • 1 large red bell pepper
  • 1 large green pepper
  • 1 medium sized onion
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon chili seasoning (I use Brown Bag Chili Mix)
  • cayenne pepper (according to you taste – be careful cayenne pepper is VERY spicy)
  • (1) 28oz can tomato puree
  • (1) 28oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 12oz tomato juice
  • (3) 15oz cans chili beans in hot sauce
  • (2) 15oz cans dark red kidney beans

Brown turkey over medium heat and drain any liquid.  Chop red bell pepper, green bell pepper and onion.

Combine tomato puree, crushed tomatoes, tomato juice, chili beans and kidney beans in to a very large pot or crockpot.  Add peppers, onions and ground turkey then add chili seasoning and cayenne pepper (it’s best to add cayenne pepper in small doses and “test” it to be sure it’s not too hot).

Heat on a stove over low heat for an hour stirring frequently or in a crockpot for how ever long you would like.  It’s best to let it sit overnight in the refrigerator after you’re done heating the chili and eat it the next day.

Top off with 1-2 tablespoons of reduced fat shredded colby jack or cheddar cheese if you’d like and Enjoy!

XOXO The Glam Runner


What Happens When you Slack off in the Week or 2 Leading up to a Race?

Have you ever signed up for a race and put forth the effort to train then the few weeks leading up to the big event life gets in the way and you’re not able to run?  I can say that has happened to me numerous times this year.

It happened the first time leading up to the 2012 Disney Half Marathon in January.  I went to Chicago for Christmas for a couple of weeks; I did not do my long runs and did not eat properly at all.  What’s even worse is, I didn’t do ANY training runs the week before the half marathon either.  I was not in to this one at all and ended up walking the last 5 miles.  If that were to happen now, I’d be ok but that was only the second half marathon after a full year off from racing to have my baby.  I still had an extra 15 pounds to lose at that point as well.  I won’t post my time for that race but it was my worst time by far of all time.  Then came the Disney Princess Half Marathon in February and I was back on track.  My extra weight was gone and I had trained hard with a respectable time of 1:47:42.

Now let’s fast forward to my spring half marathons.  I ran the First Midwest Bank Southwest Half Marathon in May of 2012 in Palos Hill, IL during a work trip to Chicago.  I didn’t do any runs the week of and did not practice healthy pre race habits however somehow I finished with a PR of 1:39:41.  I trained extremely hard for this one and was below pre pregnancy weight so I don’t think that week of bad habits and no running had any effect on me.  I ran the North Shore Half Marathon in Highland Park, IL June 6, 2012.  Unfortunately I was only able to squeeze in two 5 mile runs in a 3 week period and didn’t do a long run for 2 full weeks – long story as to why.  It was a VERY hot day that day and the course was extremely hilly but I still ended up finishing in 1:49:40.  It was definitely not my best time, but even if I ran as I was supposed in those 3 weeks I would not have had the best time due to the hills (which we are not used to in Florida) and extreme heat (which we are used to but I still can’t push it to my limits on that kind of weather).

I ran the Chicago Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon in July, 2012 with another bad running week, the week before the race due to being out-of-town for work again.  It was another super hot and humid day in Chicago and I ended up finishing in 1:53:07.  My lack of running the week before my race was catching up with me.  It didn’t help that my IT band and knee started bothering me at mile 8 either and I was practically at a “fast walk” the last 3 miles.  I regrouped and made sure I was at home the week of my next half marathon which was the Chicago Half Marathon on September 9, 2012 and flew in the Friday before the race instead of the week before.  I did my long run the Sunday before, tapered properly and ate like a champion the week of and I finished in 1:41:35.  Finally back to my comfortable time!

It happened again leading up to my 5 mile race I did today where I couldn’t run for a week because I was out-of-town for work then I ended up getting a painful blood blister on my foot.  I ran once the week of but still finished with a respectable 35:51.

If you find yourself faced with a race that you slacked off for the week of or even couple of weeks leading up to it, if you trained properly for the months leading up to the race you will more than likely be fine.  A week is not going to take away all the hard work you put forth, especially if you are running a full marathon and you’ve been training for 18 weeks or longer.  The rest might actually do you more good than harm.

Here are some of my tips when you have slacked off a bit leading up to the event:

  1. Never try to cram in miles you weren’t able to run.  If you were forced to take some time off and it’s only a week before your race just do your moderate taper runs.  If you try to make up mileage and cram it in to that week or 2 before you will either exhaust yourself and not do well in the race or you’ll injure yourself.
  2. Eat like a champion and drink plenty of water.  The increase of carbs leading up to the big race (I’m talking 10 milers, half marathons, 20 milers and full marathons.  There is no need to card load for 5Ks or 10Ks) will store that much-needed glycogen to keep you going and if you’ve trained properly leading up to the race, your body is already ready for the mileage. Also, being completely hydrated a few days before the race will keep you going strong as well.  In any situation, rather it be perfect where you were able to train 100% correctly or not, you need to be hydrated in the days leading up to the race.  Not the morning of.
  3. If you only missed your longer run the week before the race, try to at least keep your legs going with short taper runs.  This will keep the blood flowing and keep your legs in running condition.  You’re going to taper anyways so just be sure to keep with the lower mileage and don’t do anything more (as I explained in the first tip).
  4. Stretch and keep your muscles loosened up.  If you aren’t able to run the week or couple of weeks leading up to your race, make sure you stretch and keep your muscles from tightening or cramping up.  Don’t over do it though and try not to stretch a completely cold muscle.
  5. Make sure to get in a warm up mile the morning of the race.  Warming up will get your body familiar to what is about to happen.  I know if I haven’t run in a couple of day then just go straight to race pace with out warming up, everything on my body will cramp up.  This will be especially true if you haven’t run in a week or 2.
  6. Lastly, don’t dwell on it and trust in the training you did do leading up to your break.  As I stated, if you’ve trained properly for months, a week or 2 isn’t going to totally kill your ability to run a successful race.  If anything, learn from what happened and get it right for the next one!  As my graphic says, just get out there and do it even if you think you’re going to do poorly.  You can end up totally surprising yourself.

XOXO The Glam Runner


U Can Finish 5 Miler 2012 Results

U Can Finish 5 Miler

October 14, 2012 7:30AM UCF Campus Orlando, FL

  • Finish Time:  35:51
  • Age Group Place:  4th/138
  • Gender Place:  22nd/756
  • Overall Place:  106th/1,385

I ran the U Can Finish 5 Miler (Presented by Florida Hospital) this morning.  I only did a 6 mile run this week due to being out-of-town for work, a painful blood blister on my pinky toe and ankle pain after my 6 mile run on Thursday (I need new shoes).  I went in to the race feeling very well – my body felt rested.  I can run 5 miles with my eyes closed but my goal is to finish as fast as my abilities allow me to and to place in my division (Women 30-34) so I was nervous because I slacked on my speed work for the last 2 weeks.  My initial goal was a finish time of 34:27 but that might have been a little aggressive because this was the first 5 mile race I have ever run plus the heat and humidity is still going strong in Orlando.  I cannot push myself to my ultimate limit in humidity – my body just doesn’t allow it right now.

I still did end up finishing 4th out of 138 in my age group (I missed 3rd place by 35 seconds) and even though I ultimately wanted to place in my division, I am happy with finishing 4th.  Today just wasn’t my morning.  I am more and more confident that I will do very well in the Chicago Hot Chocolate 15K on November 4, 2012.  The weather will be cool and the humidity will not be a factor that time of year in Chicago.

I need to learn to realize where my limits are and to push them safely in the heat and humidity.  At the end of the day I am only in competition with myself so this is a great starting point for me to beat in the next 5 Mile race I will run…when ever that may be.  Running races in Florida definitely helps me in those races that I run in the cooler months here and in Chicago.  I end up feeling great almost like I was training on hills and am running a totally flat course!

Next Race:  Run Nona 5K October 27, 2012 Orlando, FL

6 Beauty Trends to Try for the Fall

Let’s talk beauty!  I’m not the Glam Runner for nothing; I love researching and trying out new beauty trends.  I love talking skin care, hair, make up, nails, you name it, but not all trends are for everyone.

Here are a few new trends and products I’ve found for the fall:

  1. BB Cream:  it’s a moisturizer, primer, anti-aging serum and adds a little bit of color.  It minimizes the number of products you need in your beauty/make up routine and leaves you with a more fresh-faced look rather than too made up look when you wear foundation.  I like Bobbie Brown’s BB Cream.
  2. Nail Art:  there are so many cool trends out there right now for your manicure or pedicure!  Pintrest is loaded with tons of different ideas but you need a lot of talent and patience to be able do it yourself.  You can paint each nail a different color or do the Ombre trend yourself.  Just find 3 colors in the same color family (one dark, one medium and one light shade) and paint the pinky and ring fingers the darker shade, the middle and pointer fingers the medium shade and paint the thumb the light color.  I just did a manicure where I painted all of my nails red and the ring finger pink then topped the ring fingers off with glitter polish.
  3. Undone Waves:  keep your hair natural looking this fall.  It’s easy if you already have wavy hair (just run some styling cream through your hair and go) but it’ll take a little work with the flat iron and texturizing spray if you have straight hair.  Here is a video from Birchbox on how to create waves with a flat iron:
  4. Bright Eye Shadows:  this fall try new shadows like electric purple, pinks, burnt orange or deep green.  I know I am usually a bronze and green eyeshadow girl but I will definitely be trying some purples, deeper greens and pinks.  Always remember to keep the rest of your make up minimal when you do bright or dramatic eyes.
  5. Plum Lips:  plum lips are in for the fall.  This is one of those trends that work for some but not all.  If you aren’t ready to go for full on deep, dark plum lips dab a little plumb color on to your lips with your finger tips.
  6. Big Hair:  I love this one!  Not only are undone waves on trend for the fall but so is big volume.  If you have heavy long hair like me, you need a root lifter (I like Big Sexy Hair Root Lift and Pureology’s Root Lifter), big rollers and a teasing comb.  I like to curl my hair with a big barreled curling iron then set the curls with large plastic “magnetic rollers” or velcro rollers until my make up is done then tease the top.

Pick out what fall trends you want to try and make sure you feel comfortable with them.  You don’t have to try everything – try what works for you.  There are so many different options out there, I only laid out 6 but there are many more out there.  Check out and to find out what else is on trend.

XOXO The Glam Runner

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Runner’s Confidence – it’s more important than you think

Let’s talk confidence.  I’m not talking about strutting it in your party dress with style, I’m talking runner’s confidence.

You pick out a race to run in, you pick out a training program, do your training runs, long runs, you eat well, get your healthy carbs in and drink plenty of water throughout your months of training.  You stretch, you taper the week of the race, you pick out your race outfit, pin your bib on your clothes and lay everything out the night before, carb load the few days before your race and get to bed early…then it’s race morning!  There is nothing more exciting for runners than race morning!  It’s time to do it; time to get out there and do what you’ve been training for all these long hard months!

If you’re anything like me, you doubt yourself every single time you get to that start line.  Did I train hard enough?  Did I pick the right program?  Should I have run more or less the week of this race?  Maybe I should have stretched more?  Maybe I ate too many carbs the night before because I feel heavy and full?  Will I meet my goal?  Will I PR?  The questions and doubts are endless!  Then that horn goes off and I’m off – no turning back.  It’s me, the open road and the hundreds or thousands of other runners who are all running the same race.  I love and hate that feeling at the same time.  I do feel that the “doubt” I put in myself helps me to run stronger and harder however I finish every single race picking out what went wrong, what I did wrong and what I could have done better.  I do this if I didn’t do as well as I expected or even if I PR’d.  It all has to do with the confidence I have in myself as a runner.

I’ve always been told, if I did the training, put in the miles and taper properly I will do just fine.  Just fine isn’t good enough for me; I’m an athlete, I’m a competitor, I am a runner.  As a runner I should be confident in myself – I train very hard and I have talent.  I only started running in 2009 (with an almost 1 year break while I was pregnant) but I finish in the top 3% in my age group, top 3% in the overall female group and I generally finish in the top 8-9% overall.  Why don’t I have more confidence in myself as a runner?  I can’t answer that question right now but it’s more than likely my competitive spirit but sometimes that can take the fun out of running.

It is very important for those of us who struggle with this runner’s confidence issue to overcome it because the races we run that we enjoy so much will become a chore and no longer enjoyable.  Runners have a unique train of thought; who else loves something so much that hurts like hell, that you might hate (more of a love to hate feeling) every single second of and not be able to walk when you’re done yet can’t wait until the next race?  Most of us who run are doing it for fun, it’s generally not our job to run and you’re not going to get fired if you don’t PR so why stress so much over racing?  I’m not saying to go in to it not caring about how you do and to not train hard; I’m saying to realize that if you don’t PR this time there is always the next race to PR in.  Go in to it confident in your training and your abilities, push it and do your best but don’t dwell on it if you didn’t perform your best on that particular day.

There are many factors that go in to not doing as well as you expected to.  If it’s hot and humid out, you can’t expect to PR and you’re really not supposed to push it to your limits when it’s hot and humid out anyways.  Also, you can’t compare all courses – you cannot always expect to PR when you PR’d on a flat course and you’re running a hilly course at your next race.  It’s different and the hilly course is obviously going to be much more challenging.  If you’re getting over an injury or you’re not feeling well on race day you can’t expect to finish with a killer time as well.  When you have these factors working against you, do as best as you possibly can in those conditions but don’t let a less than impressive time ruin your day.

If you feel as if conditions are perfect, you trained as hard as you could and prepped well and you still didn’t do as well as expected, learn from what went wrong.  You will be able to figure out why you didn’t do as well as you wanted to, learn from it and work towards making sure it doesn’t happen again in your next race.  It’s all you can do plus it keeps you working hard.  What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger and makes us better runners.  If you PR’d ever single time there would be nothing to work towards.

I can say I have major confidence issues in full marathons.  I am a great at running 5Ks to half marathons but there is something about 26.2 that scares the hell out of me.  I have ran in 2 full marathons (Disney World Marathon 2010 and the Minneapolis Marathon 2010) and I didn’t do well at either one.  My times for both are actually quite embarrassing comparing it to my half marathon times.  My knee/IT band gave me major issues during Disney 2010 and I was forced to walk the last 6 miles – I was going so strong and enjoying myself until the 20th mile then it all went downhill once my knee started to hurt.  I was humiliated and incredibly disappointed but I gave the full another try a few months later.  I ran with a great pace group in the Minneapolis Marathon, I was going strong and getting “in the zone” until “nature called” around the 18th mile.  I ended up losing the group I was running with and lost my momentum – again, I was devastated.  I told myself I would never run a full marathon again but I decided to sign up for the next Disney Marathon (January 2013).  I will complete 8-9 half marathons this year so I need to challenge myself a bit more.  I am training harder this time around and working with people who know how to dominate the full marathon.  I need the moral support and I need to take advice from other runners who know what they are doing.  I am going in to the big one with confidence and I know I will do as well as I can.  Disney will be a test and I will go for a big PR and goal at the 2013 Chicago Marathon – I can’t wait!  I might not be a long distance runner and I might need to stick to medium to short distance races but that isn’t going to stop me from trying.

Trust your training, trust yourself as a runner and trust that you will do as well as you are able to that particular day.  Make a goal for every race and strive to meet that goal but if you don’t there is always next time.  Trust that you are great, you will run great and enjoy yourself out there!

I am going to read my own post before I walk out the door for my 5 mile race on Sunday and I am going to trust that I will do well and that I am a strong and confident runner!

XOXO The Glam Runner

Cajun Lime Shrimp Tacos

Cajun Lime Shrimp Tacos:  Serves 2

2 teaspoons of olive oil

2 cloves of garlic (minced)

1 poblano pepper (seeds and membranes removed and cut in to small strips)

6oz fresh or frozen shrimp (thawed, peeled and deveined)

1 lime (cut in to 4 wedges)

Cajun Spice

4 corn tortillas

2 tablespoons chopped onion

2 tablespoon of chopped cilantro

4 tablespoons of salsa or pico de gallo

1/2 of a small avocado (divided in to 4 pieces and cut in to squares)

Heat skillet on medium heat, add 1 teaspoon of olive oil and garlic until the garlic becomes fragrant.  Add poblano pepper strips and cook until it just starts to become soft.  Add second teaspoon of olive oil and shrimp.  Squeeze the juice of one of the lime wedges on to the shrimp and peppers and sprinkle shrimp with Cajun seasoning.  Turn shrimp over and do the same of the other side.  Continue to cook shrimp until fully cooked adding the juice from the 3rd lime wedge and add more Cajun seasoning (as desired).  Squeeze the juice of the last lime wedge on to the shrimp and peppers after everything is fully cooked and heat is turned off.  Remove any skins from poblano the peppers if they become loose.

Steam or cook tortillas on a griddle until browned.  Evenly add cooked shrimp and peppers on to the corn tortillas.  Top with desired amount of chopped onion, cilantro, avocado and salsa.  Enjoy!


  1. Feel free to add more or less lime juice or Cajun seasoning
  2. Toppings do not need to be exact
  3. Can also top with pineapple mango salsa
  4. Can mash the avocado to make it more of a guacamole texture
  5. Shrimp and pepper mixture is also good served on top of brown rice
  6. Try this recipe with chicken

XOXO The Glam Runner

Tips for Healthy Traveling: be realistic and don’t derail your health & fitness goals on your next trip

Every time I have an upcoming trip for work, I plan out how I am going to keep it as healthy and close to my normal routine as possible – I pack my work out clothes, plan out where I’m going to run and what I’m going to do for resistance training, I vow to drink plenty of water and eat only the healthiest things off the menu at restaurants.  I plan on steering clear of alcohol and catch up on some much-needed sleep that I don’t get at home.  Well, I can tell you that never happens.

When I travel for work (I am the Vice President and an account executive for Elite Tradeshow Services; we install and dismantle trade show exhibits and corporate events all over North America) I am on show site at a convention center ensuring my clients are happy and that their very expensive trade show booth is setting up properly; by the time the day ends I am usually totally drained and I usually get invited for a drink after my work is done then dinner usually gets planned for 7:00 or 8:00PM which gives me little time to get ready and make it to dinner on time.  I go to dinner and end up choosing the not so great for me option, stay out too late and indulge in a few alcoholic beverages and work starts at 8:00AM the next day.  In my line of work it’s fairly unrealistic that I will be able to completely keep up with my normal clean eating and healthy lifestyle so I came up with a few tips to at least keep it as healthy as I possibly can while still doing my job and being social and heck, having a little bit of fun that I never do at home.

Walk as much as possible!  While I might not have got my runs in while I was in Vegas over the weekend, I walked to and from the convention center from my hotel every single day.  The walk took about 30 minutes, plus I walk all day long at the convention center so I got many miles of walking in.  It really is very easy to walk a lot in Vegas.  You see the place you are going to and say “look, it’s not that far away” then walk to it and before you know it you’ve logged in a good 30-45 minutes of walking.  That sure is better than taking a cab plus you end up saving a ton of money by skipping those super expensive cab rides.  In many Vegas hotels, you have to pay to use the fitness facility so if it’s not included in the room rate I’d suggest a lot of walking, running outside (if time allows), bringing resistance bands and doing exercises that use body weight like push-ups.

Drink plenty of water!  I drink on average, about 5-6 liters of water every day.  I love water, I need water and it’s not hard for me to do.  Drinking water all day long hydrates you and keeps you from drinking high calorie/sugary drinks.  Why not commit to this one rule?  During the day, only drink water and maybe a cup of coffee in the morning.  You can save the alcohol for the night-time.  Drinking water all day can also help prevent the nasty hangover if you choose to indulge in a few cocktails later on because you will go in to it totally hydrated.

Choose your alcoholic beverages wisely!  If you are going to drink alcohol, be sure you are choosing simple beverages mixed with water as opposed to high sugar juices and soda.  Whatever you do, DO NOT order up margaritas or Pina Coladas!!!  1 frozen margarita can cost you 800 calories, and who has only 1 margarita?  If you want a cocktail try to choose a clear alcohol, like vodka, with water or soda water with a lemon or lime, if that’s too much, try it with a “splash” of juice or coke.  There is no healthy way to booze it up and alcohol is all 100% empty calories that do you no good at all but you can always make the better choice.  Also, try drinking a glass or bottle of water along with every single drink you have.  Sticking with beer or wine is a much better choice that sugary/high calorie cocktails as well.  We all deserve to indulge and have fun every now and again but don’t make it a regular thing.

Look for healthier options when dining out in restaurants!  I find it very exciting to go to a new city and trying the local cuisine and local restaurants.  I am a total foodie, I like almost everything and I’m always up for trying something new however I always try not to get too out of control when ordering off the menu.  I generally don’t order salads (I’m an athlete and I require meals much more filling) but I also will try to order something off the healthier section of the menu.  I will always stay away from the fried food!  I am a big fan of Mexican food and while in Vegas this past weekend I went to El Segundo Sol at the Fashion Show Mall and it was delicious.  I ordered some fresh salsa, tableside guacamole and chicken fajitas with corn tortillas instead of flour (making that switch can save you at least a good 50 calories per tortilla) and I didn’t use the cheese or sour cream.  It wasn’t the healthiest option on the strip, but I still went to a place that I knew I could make the best of what I was eating.  For breakfast, I ordered oatmeal with fresh fruit from the room service menu with tea.  Breakfast is easy to keep healthy and you’re generally not eating that meal in a social setting.

Lastly, if there is something that you really want and it’s something you can’t get anywhere else – just get it!  You need to indulge every now and again and I think the perfect time to indulge is when you are out-of-town.  You’re out of your normal routine to begin with so it’s not like this is going to become a habit.  I have to admit that I had In and Out Burger when I was in Vegas and it was delicious!  I haven’t had it in 2 years so I just went for it.  My craving was gone and I was ready to snack on a banana later and eat something healthy for dinner.  I would just suggest only eating something like that for one of your meals during your trip.  You don’t want to totally indulge for every meal every day.

My tips are realistic and easy to follow.  It’s next to impossible for me to mimic what I do at home when I’m traveling for work so I just try to work with what the situation is and make the best of it.  I will have a good week to detox and get totally back on track but I can go home knowing that I didn’t completely derail my fitness goals.

XOXO The Glam Runner