Run Find Your Happy Pace

finding my happy pace in running and life

Low Carb Cheddar Broccoli Soup

I have a new-found love of soup.  Maybe it has a lot to do with my year of the veggies adventure, but I have found a whole new appreciation for a good hot bowl of soup.

Today we are back to cold temps after a week of high 60’s and 70’s…..sigh.  So as to make the most of this chilly day, I decided to invent the Runfyhp version of Cheddar Broccoli Soup ummmmmm, yummy.

Now if you’re a big time low-fat diet follower turn away now (or take a leap into the LCHF arena) 🙂

But let me tell you, its good.  Really, really, good!



Runfyhp Low Carb Cheddar Broccoli Soup

3 cups (gluten-free) Vegetable Stock  ( I used Kitchen Basics unsalted veggie stock) You could use chicken stock, but my hubby is a vegetarian, so I did the nice thing and used veggie.

8 oz (1 block) Cream Cheese ( I used Philadelphia original)

4 oz Cheddar Cheese ( I used Kerrygold Reserve Cheddar 100% Natural Cheese)

2 Tbs Butter ( I used Kerrygold pure Irish butter)  you can probably use Ghee also

1/4 cup ( equal to 4 tbsp) Heavy Whipping Cream (organic if you can find it) I used Marva Maid (not organic)

14 oz frozen broccoli crowns ( you could use fresh I just didn’t have any one hand)

3 garlic gloves crushed

1 tsp Turmeric*  (organic if you can) you can omit this, but it’s really good for you  find out more about Turmeric here

1 tsp Yellow Curry (organic if you can)

1/2 tsp Ground Ginger (organic if you can)


Place the veggie stock and broccoli (I thawed it in the microwave first) in a pan.  Heat until the broccoli is soft but not overcooked

Add the crushed garlic, turmeric, curry and ginger.

Once the broccoli was soft I moved the mixture to the blender and pureed.  Set aside.

In a separate pan you will need to heat the shredded cheddar cheese, cream cheese, butter and whipping cream over low heat.  Be sure to stir often and don’t turn the heat up too high.  You don’t want it to burn or even bubble, just melt into a nice, delicious, gooey consistency.  You can now taste test it, oh wait that’s just me, I couldn’t resist 😉

Mix the broccoli puree into the pan with the melted cheese.  Stir and blend until well mixed and heated.  Again you do not want the heat to high.  If your mixture is too lumpy you can use an immersion blender (on low) to mix.

This recipe makes 5 servings of 1 cup each


Nutrition Info:

**** Per Serving ( 1 cup ) ****

Cal 361

Fat  30 g

Total Carbs 8.8 g  Note:  6.4 active carbs  (carbs – fiber = active carbs)

Fiber  2.4

Protein 12.6

LOVE IT?  Pin it, Share it, Tweet it!  Thanks so much 🙂




Sweet Treat – Dark Chocolate Almond Mini Cups #paleo #lowcarb

3/2014 UPDATE:  I still make (an love) these but now I leave the honey out, still just as delish!

As many of you may know I went wheat and gluten-free since early Jan 2014, mostly due to reading Grain Brain and Wheat Belly.  I never got the dreaded “carb flu” and after about 2 1/2 weeks I no longer craved carbs (bread,pasta, etc) anymore.  In fact I have been able to pass up bread, cakes (read: multiple birthdays) and even pizza!  In the past 3 weeks I have even gone LCHF (low carb / high fat)  but that is another blog all together.

I still love my sweet treat every once in a while but I don’t go for cookies, etc.  My saving grace, thank goodness, dark chocolate is still considered ok in moderation even on a low carb diet.  Yes God is good!  I found a similar chocolate recipe but tweaked it using dark cacao and lowering the amount of it in the recipe.  (Because I am cool like that.  Ok maybe not cool but I am a total dark chocoholic!  lol)  The result is divine and a great treat when I really want something sweet.  It’s simple, made with “good” fats and only 5 ingredients I think I am in love!

Remember it’s not about denying yourself treats, it’s about moderation and finding your happy pace.  

So here you go, let me know if you try it out!

(Easy Peasy) Dark Chocolate Almond Mini Cups 🙂   #paleo #lowcarb 

1/2 Cup Smooth Almond Butter (I used Barney Butter)

1/4 cup Dark Cacao (I used Hershey’s Special Dark 100% Cacao)

1/4 Cup Organic Raw Honey (I used Trader Joe’s)

1/2 cup Coconut Oil (I used Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil)

1/2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

Add all the ingredients in a bow.  Mix until smooth. I mixed mine using my immersion blender for about 3 minutes.    I measured out  1 (one) Tablespoon of the mix and placed it into a mini cupcake liner.  Freeze.

Total number of mini cups 27 (only 24 pictured below)

NOTE:  This need to be refrigerated, however I prefer them frozen 🙂   or they may liquify.


Below is the breakdown of the calories/fat/carbs/fiber per mini cup:  27 mini cups total

Calories 76

Fat 7 g

Carbs 4 g*

Fiber 1g

*net carbs (carbs minus fiber=) 3 net carbs / mini cup






Motivational Monday – February 24 2014 Learning to Love Yourself

The journey to self-improvement is a wonderful thing!  But in my humble opinion I believe no matter what your journey is in life (whether it’s to lose weight, get fit, run a marathon etc)  you will never truly find happiness in the journey if you don’t learn this one golden rule:

Have a great Monday and a wonderful week!

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Pretty Muddy Women’s Mud Run 2014 – Want to go for FREE?

For the second year I am proud to be an Ambassador with the Pretty Muddy Women’s Mud Run!  Spreading women’s running and mud all around the country 🙂  What fun!!

Last year I participated in my very first Pretty Muddy which was also my first mud run ever!  I had an absolute blast, who knew getting muddy could be so fun!  I loved seeing women of ALL ages and levels tackling the mud and obstacles.  I saw groups of women clebrating, getting dirty and just having a blast together.  The best thing about pretty muddy is this…

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No pressure to finish first, your HAPPY pace (whatever that may be) in a great women-only supportive atmosphere.

Here is my favorite picture from last years Pretty Muddy race in Richmond Virginia.  You have to admit that looks like fun and it was!  I mean how often do adults, moms and “responsible” women get to crawl through mud.  🙂  I love it and now you have a chance a winning a FREE race entry of your very own thanks to Pretty Muddy and Girls Gone Sporty!   You pick which event you can attend.

  • Dallas, April 26th
  • Sacramento, May 3rd
  • Chicago, August 16th
  • Richmond, September 20th

Follow the rafflecopter link on the top right to enter.  Good Luck!!!!

 (opens today and runs thru Friday February 21st.)

2 winners!



Motivational Monday Feb 17 2014 – Age is Just a Number

Yesterday I had a great time participating in Virginia is for Lovers 6k.  I was asked to do this race with a dear friend of mine Ellen.  This was her first race back since breaking her foot over the summer last year.  This is probably the coldest race each year in Virginia Beach which was one of the reasons I wasn’t sure I was going to do it.  But Ellen asked me if I would walk it with her (she is a speed walker) as her comeback race.  How could I say no 🙂

The race lived up to its cold reputation, it was 28 degrees….I didn’t even bother looking at the “real feel” because frankly I didn’t want to know 😉  But we bundled up and headed out.  Aren’t we pretty:



The race was fun for lots of reasons

  1. I got to walk it with a friend
  2. I got to take pictures & eat candy ( they give out M&M’s on the course)
  3. I got to dance on the course and enjoy myself!

But the best part was when I found out tonight that Ellen got 1st place in her age group!!!  Did I mention she is somewhere between 70-74!!  Wohoo!!  I am so proud of her, she is an inspiration and I hope someday I will be doing the same.  If that doesn’t get you all moving than I don’t know what will 🙂

Happy Motivational Monday Everyone!!

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O.C.M. What is it? Is it for You?

Finding my happy pace in running AND life!

OK so for those who don’t know what the heck O.C.M. is (hey I didn’t until like November) O.C.M. stands for oil cleansing method.  That’s all fine and nice but how about some details Darlena!  Ok, ok.

Late last year, around the end of November, I decided to look into alternative ways to get rid of these darn breakouts I had been having.  No one likes to have breakouts. Slightly embarrassing yes, but more of an annoyance because at my age I should not have to deal with acne and wrinkles!!!  Can I get an AMEN!  One thing at a time please 🙂  Anyway I had tried a bunch of different OTC items, everything seemed to work for a while and then, blah, same old same old.  I went to the doctor once before my hubby got home from deployment to see what he thought.  Not too bad he said but gave me some antibiotics to help clear it up.  A temporary solution for sure.

Anyway after much research I ran into this blog called Crunch Betty (you have food on your face).  Not only is she quite funny (I love that) she also wrote a great article about O.C.M. (you can read it here) .  Actually she wrote a follow-up one too which you can find on her site which is was also very helpful.

Anyway as crazy as it sounds (yes admittedly I was a bit desperate)  I decided to clean my face…with OIL?  What the heck?  Putting oil, on a face with acne?  Girl what in the heck do you think you’re doing?  I know, I know seems a bit odd.  But think about it for a second.  What cuts through oil?  Water?  Um no!  Oil cuts through oil.

I have now been using the oil cleansing method (O.C.M.) for about 2 1/2 months.  After a bit of trial and error I think I have finally found the combination that is right for me.  My skin is clearer, more moisturized and for the first time in a looooong time has a kind of glow to it.  Now I have never nor will ever be known as the girl with the lovely skin, but even I have to admit it’s looking really nice and it feels really healthy and balanced.  Score!

The Basics of O.C.M. :  

-Find the right combination of oils for your skin (again Crunch Betty can give you a good idea of where to start)

-Mix the oils (I mix them nightly right in my hand)  but you can pre-mix if you want.

-Massage the oils in an upward motion into your face for about 2 minutes.  Did you notice I did not mention taking off your makeup?  That’s right, because there is no need.  The oil will do both the removal and the cleaning.

-Wet a wash cloth with as warm of water as you can handle and wring it out.

-Place the wash cloth over your face,  I keep it there for about 30 sec, or until it feels cool, then I repeat 2 or 3 more times.

note:  I will also sometimes put the oil on my face before I shower and leave it there so the shower steam helps it soak in, just keep a wash cloth handy to wet and remove the oil from your face.

– When I am done “steaming” myself (think facial, relaxing, warm) I use the cloth to wipe all the oil off my face.  I rinse the cloth and wipe a few times.  You know you have removed the extra oils when you feel smooth and moisturized, not greasy.

–  I follow-up with a little witch hazel on any ance that appears, but honestly I don’t have very much compared to the almost daily battle before starting O.C.M.

I do this once a day, usually at night.  I still use an eye cream after because hey I’m 40+ (ouch!)  FYI:  at night I use coconut oil as an eye cream 🙂

And there you have it.  O.C.M. the runfyhp way.

Wondering what oils I use?  Here is my oil blend but honestly it’s about trial and error for sure.

I was able to find all these oils at Whole Foods

I was able to find all these
oils at Whole Foods

  • Castor Oil (antibacterial properties, a great base or carrier oil) 45%
  • Jojoba Oil (great for acne/oily skin) 5% – sometimes I skip the Jajoba all together
  • Tamanu Oil (antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties, helps reduce and repair scaring) 45%

When I first started I used just Castor and Jajoba oils but honestly adding the Tamanu oil has made a big difference for me.  I also just ordered some Sea Buckthorn Oil which is suppose to be great for your skin, we will see.

Two quick, yet important notes:

  1. Use organic and do your research on any oil you choose!
  2. It does take a bit of time, in other words it didn’t take overnight (and it took about a month to get the combination of oils for me right, but totally worth it!

Have you ever tried O.C.M.?  What do you think?





Motivational Monday Feb 10 2014 – S.M.I.L.E.

Don’t you just love to smile?  A smile usually signifies a good time or happiness in your life.  But have you ever thought about how your smile might affect someone else?  Hmmm…..just think of all the things your smile can do!  Cheer up a stranger, express love to your family or inspire someone having a rough time to keep going.

The “smile” a free gift that should be freely given!

How about we give someone a great big smile today and every day 🙂

Don’t forget you can join me every monday for some short and sweet motivation to start off your week! 

join me on

on Instagram: runfindyourhappypace

and Twitter: @Runfyhp





Go Red for Women – February 7, 2014

Don’t forget to wear your red today!  Find out more by visiting the Go Red for Women Facebook page  from the American Heart Association here.

I  walked 4 miles with a very dear friend of mine.  She started walking and racing back in 2010 🙂


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Happy Hump Day!

A little Hump Day Humor.  

Make it great and don’t forget to get your sparkle on!


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Knot Hole Crochet Cupcake Hat Winner!!!!

Thanks everyone for participating in my Cupcake Hat Giveaway with Knot Hole Crochet!

I just know the winner is going to love her hat as much as I do.  I hope you were able to check out all the wonderful things Amanda over at Knot Hole Crochet can make for you, your family or friends!  Because aren’t homemade items the best 🙂


And the winner is……..Screen shot 2014-02-04 at 3.59.50 PM

Congrats Kim!!!!

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