Run Find Your Happy Pace

finding my happy pace in running and life

Runfyhp Gluten-Free Spicy Pretzel Recipe

I love me some spicy, and I love me some pretzels.  However I have also been trying to get back on track with my gluten-free lifestyle.  A wonderful woman in my bible study group (Thank you Cathy) made a version of these fantastic spicy pretzels and was also nice enough to share the recipe.  You can easily make these with regular mini pretzels if gluten-free is not a concern of yours.

My recipe is based on the original but I swapped out a few things including the regular pretzels for gluten-free pretzel twists and olive oil for vegetable oil….cause I’m cool like that 😉 (or high maintenance, your choice)

They really are fantastic!  Even my kids liked them!

Let me know if you try them.


Runfyhp Gluten Free Spicy Pretzels

1 bag (8oz) Gluten Free mini pretzel twists (I used Snyder’s)

1/4 cup Olive oil

1 tablespoon Hidden Valley Original Ranch Seasoning Mix

1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1/4 teaspoon Ground Cayenne Pepper



This is all you need!

Heat oven to 200.  Mix olive oil, ranch, garlic powder and cayenne pepper in a medium size bowl.  Add pretzels and stir until all are well coated with the mixture.  They should look like this (well coated) slightly shiny



Spread out flat on a baking sheet.

You will bake them for a total of one hour.  ***However every 20 minutes stir them around.  This will flip the pretzels and ensure that they stay well coated with the mixture during baking.

Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks 🙂






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Runfyhp Healthy and Easy Christmas Morning Breakfast #glutenfree

Christmas morning at our house is exciting, fun but also…..chaotic!  This may be your house too.  So the last thing I want to do is spend a ton of time in the kitchen.  However I would like us to have a special Christmas breakfast sans boxes of artificially sweet cereal boxes strewn across the countertop.

Here is a yummy, simple and gluten free Egg Cup Breakfast.  I made ours vegetable style but you could easily add bacon or ham to the bottom of your cups!

Let me know if you try them.  Merry Christmas!

Vegetarian Egg Cups (this made 8 individual egg cups)

8 eggs

3-4 mini sweet peppers  (chopped)

1/4 cup spinach and arugula mix (chopped)

1 frozen crushed garlic cube (I used Dorot brand) cut into 8 pieces

Cheddar cheese (amount to your liking per egg cup)

* you will need a cupcake pan, obviously this wasn’t a problem in my house 😉

Spray the bottom of each cup with cooking spay (no liners needed)  Add chopped mini peppers, chopped spinach/arugula and 1/8 of the  garlic cube to each cup.  Add cheese over the veggies.  Crack an egg into each cup atop the veggies and cheese.


Add veggies, then add cheese, then an egg on top!


Bake at 350 for 18-20 minutes  until the whites are cooked and the egg yolk is to your liking.  Pop them out and enjoy!  Can be served as is, with toast or add some salsa!


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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






2014 The Year of the Veggies

I decided I really, really need to up my vegetable consumption for 2014.  The good thing about getting a little older (wait, what? did I just say that?) Backup a minute…..I mean the good thing about getting wiser 🙂  is that I really like veggies now.  Especially dark green veggies like spinach and kale.  When I was a kid I wasn’t all that fond of them or veggies in general.  Maybe my taste buds have changed, maybe I got less picky, or maybe I just finally realized how healthy veggies really are?  Probably a combo of the three.  But I am also all about simple and quick.  And my biggest issue of getting veggies into every meal is poor planning.  I am not the best meal planner on the planet, ask my family I am sure they would love to tell you all about it.

“But 2014 will be different! (she says wholeheartedly) And we shall eat all colors of the rainbow!”  

Everyone at the Runfyhp household!  

Yes even you Mr. Thirteen-year-old that gags at almost anything green.


(The cheering crowd roars in the background, just loud enough to cover my children’s moans of frustration, lol.)

With that being said I have found ways to kind of sneak them into my day and I will show you how you can too!

For today lets start with breakfast.  Most days (especially on workout days) I do a protein shake post workout.  This is my favorite (read simple) recipe if you want to try it:

Runfyhp Spinach / Berry Protein Shake

1 cup almond milk

1 1/2 cups raw organic spinach

1 scoop protein powder ( I use Garden of Life Raw Protein)

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1 cup mixed frozen berries

Blend it up and voila!  You first serving of veggies for the day is in the bag, or in this case your body.  Wohoo!

Screen shot 2014-01-02 at 10.21.39 PM

What is your favorite veggie?


Frozen Dark Chocolate Protein Shake

The first time I ever had frozen hot chocolate was with Cara my buddy from over at Running In Sanity during our celebratory dinner after Nike DC.

Recently I found a recipe for a frozen hot chocolate protein drink.  I loved the idea BUT didn’t agree with all the ingredients 100%.  I do not use “diet” hot chocolate.  I do my best to steer away from aspartame, sucralose etc.  They also added stevia.  So they took out real sugar, added fake crap and then put in stevia?  Seemed kinda strange to me.  Call me crazy but I prefer raw sugar and yes I eat real butter too, but that is a whole different topic.  Anyway I went with Organic Hot Cocoa that uses raw cane sugar in it.

So this is how I reconfigured it and made it dark and delicious:

1) switched to dark chocolate (because I love, love, love dark chocolate)

2) I used Green & Black’s brand organic dark hot chocolate mix instead of diet hot cocoa (yuck)

3) Dark Chocolate Cocoa powder instead of milk chocolate powder

4) I added a half cup of coconut milk because I didn’t want to add whip cream (which was suggested in the original recipe)

5) I used my fav – Garden of Life Raw protein powder

Ended up with 32 grams of protein thanks to my protein powder and cottage cheese. Not too shabby!

It was AWESOME 🙂  Maybe not something I would have everyday…well maybe 😉  But I thought I would share:  I took this straight from my MyFitnessPal page:


Runfyhp Frozen Dark Chocolate Smoothie

Blue Diamond – Almond Breeze Unsweetened Vanilla 30 Calorie 1/2 cup 15 1 1 1 1
Cottage Cheese – Cottage Cheese Breakstone’s – Small Curd Fat Free, 1/2 Cup (120g) 80 8 0 11 0
Garden of Life – Raw Protein Beyond Organic Protein Formula (Vanilla), 23 grams (1scoop) 90 4 0 17 3
Hersheys – Dark Chocolate Cocoa Powder, 1 tbl 10 3 1 1 2
Green & Black’s Organic – Hot Chocolate Drink – Dark Chocolate, 4 tsp 80 15 2 2 2
Add Food

275 31 4 32 8

10 -12 ice cubes

Mixed in my Vitamix….YUM

Totals:   275 Calories, 31 gm carbs,  4 gm fat,  32 gm protein, 8 gm fiber 


Runfyhp Fiber and Protein Waffles

I have been trying to add more protein and fiber to my healthy diet.  This past weekend my kiddos wanted waffles.  I decided to try pump them up a bit.  They turned out great!

As a side note be careful about what you top your waffles with.  You could try a small amount of coconut oil instead of butter or use real butter sparingly.  At our house we also switched to a pure maple syrup, not that sugary crap most “syrups” are made of.  A little more pricey but totally worth it.  But again, use sparingly.

If you try it let me know what you think 🙂



Runfyhp Version of Turkey Chili

Yesterday I made and posted a picture of Turkey Chili on my FB page, it was delish.  Since people asked here is my version.


I based my turkey chili off of Beast Turkey Chili with a few changes.

Here is my version:

Runfyhp Turkey Chili
(Makes 4 Servings, 1.5 cups each)

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1.5 lbs lean ground turkey
  • 1 medium white onion, chopped
  • 1 small green bell pepper, chopped**
  • 1 small red bell pepper, chopped**
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 (15 ounce) can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained**
  • 1 (15 ounce) can navy beans, rinsed and drained**
  • 1 (28 ounce) organic diced tomato** – I pureed them in my Vitamix**
  • 2 tablespoons parsely (optional) – I used dried because that is all I had

Add oil, onion, pepper and garlic to a large saucepan.
When softened add in ground turkey.
Cook for a until turkey is no longer pink. 10 minutes or so
Add all seasonings (except parsley) Stir and cook for another minute
Add kidney and navy beans and pureed tomatoes, bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to a low simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Sprinkle with parsley when serving (optional)

**changes from the original recepie 

This chili packs a big punch of fiber and protein!  (The original recipe says 11gm fiber and 43 g protein.)  My changes are small so it should be fairly close.

It was delish, next time I think I will add some kale because well, I love kale and think it would be fantastic 🙂  A tiny bit of cheddar cheese on top probably wouldn’t hurt either 😉

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Don’t Hate Me Because My “Fit” is Different Than Yours

** First let me say I am not a trainer, nutritionist or a certified anything.

I have completed 9 half marathons, numerous  5k’s to 10 milers.  I also lift weights and I enjoy HIIT workouts.  NONE of those things make me a bad person.


If you “run” in online fitness circles than I am sure a lot of you have been hearing negative talk about running lately, especially distance running.  I sure know I have.

Running is bad for you, running will make you / keep you FAT.

Running is the opposite of healthy?

What the???  

Although I have read numerous articles the thing that bothers me the most is the Runner Bashing!?  Now first of all let me say I believe everyone has their idea of healthy and fit.  And just like “un-fit” body types, in my opinion, there are also many “fit / healthy” types.  I like to think I fall somewhere in between the runners and the builders.  If you’re a fast-ass distance runner (not me btw) and that’s your passion than you’re not going to need / want a ton of muscle bulk.  On the other hand if you’re a beast in the weight department and that’s your passion than distance running is probably not for you.  Are either wrong…NO, NO, NO!!!

Let me explain.  As far as running goes for me

  • I love the way a good run makes me feel.  A speedy short run to a long slow distance run
  • Sticking too and completing a multi-month training plan takes determination and persistence.  That not only includes time, but sometimes that time is really, really early or cold, or hot, or humid (or all the aforementioned)
  • Crossing the finishing line of a half or full marathon is a high that people who have not done it cannot understand
  • To get to that finish line I must be diligent in fueling my body properly to get there
  • my heart is healthy as a horse.  My doctor said “You must be a runner” when she listened to it
  • if I didn’t love it, I would stop doing it

Now on the other hand  I also like….

  • Lifting weights. It makes me feel strong
  • HIIT training makes me sweat like a beast….and I like it
  • Watching my body change is very satisfying
  • Getting my body to physically change takes determination and persistence (hmm that sounds familiar)
  • To get change I must be diligent and fuel my body properly for the process (again…familiar?)

Do I personally want a more “fit” looking physic?  You betcha, but what I consider “fit” may not be what you consider fit, and you know what…THAT”S OK!!

So I guess what I mean is that I think its time to step back and give each other a pat on the back because whether you run or lift or both:

  1. your ass is not sitting on the couch
  2. if you are running or lifting or whatever,  you are taking a lot more interest in your health than someone watching tv and downing a bag of Doritios
  3. who said one body type is the perfect body type?
  4. Can’t we just all get along 😉
  5. And most of all “Are you finding your happy “Healthy” pace in life.  If you answered yes, then your on the right path for YOU!!!!!!

Just as the world has many different colors, nationalities and faiths of people, so does the fitness world have many, many different types of “fit”.  Is one better than the other?  I don’t think so.  If we were all meant to look and do and be the same, I am sure God would have made us that way.

Oh and did I mention I enjoy yoga?  Yup I do.  Hope that doesn’t make me crazy?  And lets not even get started on my “unhealthy” love for cupcakes, lol.


Are you Moving Forward…in Reverse? Part 1

Moving forward in reverse?  What in the world?!  Let me explain.  I’m talking about working your butt off and not seeing results.  Talk about frustrating!!!!  Why is it happening?  Most than likely three words…your, eating, habits.  (and mine too!)

Although I have been active most of my life, in the past 4+ years I have really made daily exercise a priority.  I plan my runs, my workouts, my training.  I figure out when is the best time “get er done” as to not interfere too much with family time.  I sometimes run in the heat or the cold of the day because that is just when it fits in.  Some days I get up a little earlier to do HIIT, and when all else fails I just make sure everyone knows it’s “Mom’s time” and they need to keep themselves occupied for a while…or join in.

However one thing I have failed to take seriously enough has been my eating habits.  I hate the word “diet”  and in this case I don’t mean diet as in counting calories, etc.  I’m talking about eating healthy.  Being part of both Fit Approach as a Sweat Pink Ambassador and Girls Gone Sporty as an Ambassador has really opened up my eyes to the importance of eating well.  It’s not like I never thought about it, it’s just that I never made any serious effort.

One of the biggest advantages of eating well….results.  You can run, sweat, lift, HITT etc but it’s true what they say:

  • Healthy bodies are made in the kitchen
  • killer abs … 30% gym 70% diet
  • and my favorite…”You can’t outrun a bad diet.”  

True, true and true.  In other words:


You’ll still move forward to a point. but if you are results driven, as in inches and pounds,  you HAVE to include a healthy diet.

So when I started my HIIT program about 2 months ago, I also started to take a much more serious look at my eating habits.  I had been kind of here, nor there on my diet.  I mean I didn’t eat bad all the time, but I also didn’t go out of my way to eat “healthy” every meal.  I am making a lot more effort now, but it’s NOT always easy.  (cause you know I loves me some cupcakes and apparently Smore’s because I downed a few of those this weekend)

I find it WAY easier to plan to exercise than to plan to eat well.  It’s definitely still a work in progress, but I am seeing results in how my body looks.  My next step is to try meal prepping for the week, but for now this is what I am doing:

  • I try to include lean protein and veggies at EVERY meal.
  • I drink water all day and when I am out I choose unsweet tea or water (lucky for me I am not a soda fan so no biggie here)
  • I include healthy fats sometimes refered to as MUFAs (monounsaturated fatty acid) found in things like nuts and seeds, oils, olives, and dark chocolate.  Avocado is also a great one, but I am allergic 🙁  so sad as its an allergy I developed just last year, bummer
  • I limit my sweets…but I do eat dark chocolate IN MODERATION
  • for snacks I switched to things like greek yogurt, fruit and homemade trail mix
  • I eat a meal or snack every 4 hours max, but usually more like every 3, throughout the day

I also love these two ideas about what kind of food you should choose…”If it didn’t grow out of the ground or have a mother (sorry to my strict vegetarian friends and husband)…don’t eat it”  and “If you can’t pronounce the ingredients than why on earth would you want to put it in your body?

Am I 100% perfect with my eating habits….um NO?!  But I have made a much more concerted effort to be more careful about what, how much and when I eat.  Cause girl I am NOT going to turn a cupcake down all the time 😉  I’m sticking to the 80 – 20 rule of eating well 80% of the time.

But in the meantime I have found a few things I love:

I make my own trail mix.  I find store bought usually has extra stuff that I don’t like

Runfyhp Trail Mix – split into portion controlled sizes of 1/4 cup so I can take it on the go 🙂

  • all natural whole almonds (unsalted)
  • sunflower seed kernels (unsalted)
  • dark chocolate chips
  • and sometimes craisins (limited amount, but I like the little extra sweet)

Runfyhp Easy Post Workout Smoothie

smoothies help me get some extra protein each day 


  • 8 oz almond milk
  • frozen strawberries (about a cup)
  • scoop of protein powder ( I love Raw Protein from Garden of Life)
  • 1 tablespoon all natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt  (I like Chobani)
  • 1/2 tablespoon flax seed powder
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of organic spinach

Coming soon…some healthy and easy “switches” to add to your diet

thanks to my Sweat Pink Ambassador friends!


Kale Superfood or Just Awesome?

OK if you’ve been around my Facebook page for a while you might have noticed I <3 Kale……a lot.  The great thing about Kale is it’s one of THE healthiest veggies around.  With fiber, iron, Vitamins K, A, C, calcium and antioxidants.  This SUPER veggie is no joke!


It’s pretty and oh so green!  🙂

So Now that we know its good for us you might be wondering what you can do with it?

Good question.

Since I was looking for a few new ideas myself, I asked some fellow Sweat Pink and Girls Gone Sporty Ambassadors for their favorite Kale recipes. I decided these were just too good not to share, so here we go.  Click on the recipie name for complete details and let the ladies know Run Find your Happy Pace sent you!

Oh and here is my favorite simple Kale recipe:

Kale with Garlic

1 Tbsp of Olive Oil

Huge bunch of Kale

2-4 garlic cloves

heat pan, saute the garlic, add the Kale and cook until the consistency you prefer.  (I like mine slightly wilted with still a bit of crunch to it.)  I have used the finished product as a side dish and as an addition to soup.  As a stand alone it’s a quick and healthy snack too.

Additional Recipes from my buds

Heather over at Run Stylish – Kale and Quinoa Pilaf.…umm yum!  This includes many of my favorite things, Kale, quinoa and feta.  Oh my, so good.

From Better Believe Fit – Astrid gave me this simple and delish and Paleo friendly idea.

“I like mine wilted with a little coconut oil and sea salt. Its simple and whole30/Paleo friendly ” Astrid   *** I tried it, its good 🙂

From Jen over at Marathon Mom – Kale and Black Bean Quesadillas – ok this is going on my must try list ASAP!

and From Debbie over at Healthy Running Mom – Chickpeas and Kale…oh man, oh man 🙂

Thanks ladies for the delish ideas.

And so I have come to the conclusion that Kale is not only a superfood but also awesome.

 So get out there are eat this Super Green and let me know what you think.