Hot Chocolate 15k Recap

I love going down to Atlanta to run with my friend KB. 

Last year we did the Muddy Buddy Bike n' Run.

This year: The Hot Chocolate 15k
{No, that's not the Michelin Man. It's a giant marshmallow friend.} 

Yes, I'm pretty sure this race was conceived for me. They thought, "What Would Lindsay Do?" 
Create a race that revolves around chocolate, of course. 

I'm not sure they were expecting it to be in the 60s in January...but it gave truth points to the HOT Chocolate 15k in HOT-lanta.

As far as the actual running part, the course took us through the heart and bowels of Atlanta. It was a much more hilly course than I was expecting. Then again, I approached this as a fun run and didn't bother to check out the elevation changes beforehand so I didn't know what to expect. It's all good though, because I LOVE HILLS. 

{If I had bothered to check the elevation beforehand, this is what I would have seen.}

I ran with KB and her friend until about 7.5 miles where we approached a big double hill. I channeled my inner beast (and by that I mean I pretended I was Hales) and flew off up the hill. I cut 2:00 off my pace per mile for the rest of the race. 10 points to Gryffindor for still having that much left in the tank! 

Just as I was entering the last stretch, Thrift Shop by Macklemore-- my anthem, if you will-- came on. I was kickin' it. That is, until Fergie started invading my ears as I neared the finish line, ruining my ethereal moment.

{Post-race with our finishers mugs.}

Now, let's get to the important part. The chocolate. In my expert opinion: sorely disappointing. I had in my dreams vats of liquid chocolate with a myriad of dippers around which we would frolic with child-like delight. Wrong. More like cafeteria style "here's your plastic bowl" with a glob of chocolate, two stale pretzels (we're talking the inch diameter twists here), a cardboard wafer, a Rice Krispie Treat that had been downsized out of concerns for childhood obesity, and a banana. 
Thank goodness for the banana.

The Good News: While the post-race treats were a bit sub-par, the swag was killer. The hoodies are fitted for women, fleece lined, and oh, so comfy! 

Because I'm always being ragged on by a certain co-worker/pitcher for not knowing anything about sports, I had to get in some baseball cred while at Turner Field. And yes, I have actually been to a game here, thank you! 

{Cheesing it up in front of Turner Field.}

I apologize for the spilt hot chocolate. I promise I did not throw up in front of Turner Field. 
One of the interesting tidbits about my transition to a paleo-based diet it that I've been a vegetarian for about the last year. That ended after I finished my marathon and said, "I want a freaking steak."

What it means for me though, is that I have to relearn how to cook meat and reincorporate it into my diet. My philosophy as a vegetarian-- and with any way of eating-- is that I listen to my body. If I was intensely craving something, (within reason-- come on now, I'm always craving chocolate) I would eat it. In running and eating, I've learned to understand what my body is telling me. I never felt deprived or craved meat while I was a vegetarian. When I did, I had a freaking steak. 

So why give paleo the ol' try, you ask? It started with a challenge from a friend to try grain-free for a week.

 I failed. Twice. 

Then, with all the junk I ate during the holidays my body basically started screaming at me to clean up my eating. After a few rough days with digestion issues clearly attributed to certain foods, I told him the next day, "I'm in. All in." Since then, my only big cheat has been the Hot Chocolate 15k which was followed by the requisite pizza and beer.

I've eliminated grains, legumes, and milk. I still eat some other forms of dairy. I'm aiming to eliminate refined sugars-- but I'll be honest, this one is the hardest for me. I have the sweet tooth from hell. All in all, I've been happy with how I've been doing so far. I allow myself some dark chocolate and sweeten other things with honey. (I've heard varying viewpoints on honey and paleo. I am still doing my research. If you have any knowledge or resources on that front, please share!)


 My second re-adventure into the world of cooking meat: 

 Crock-Pot Honey Apple Pork Loin

 I went off of this recipe over at Crossfit+Paleo = A Winning Combination.

1 pork loin
3 apples
(I used my 5 quart CrockPot)

How's that for a simple ingredient list?

{The honey I bought had no seal when I opened it. Of course I used it anyway. So if I die of a dramatic poisoning-- here's your culprit.}

Chop up the apples into slices. I decided to peel mine for a  lighter texture.

Spread a layer of apple slices in the bottom of your CrockPot and sprinkle with ground cinnamon.

Cut vertical slits halfway through the ol' pork loin, about half an inch apart.

Drizzle a bit of honey in each slit and stuff an apple slice in there.

Lay your stuffed pork loin in the CrockPot, drizzle a bit more honey on the whole shebang, and cover with the remaining apple slices. Top it off with some more cinnamon. And a lid.

Cook on low for 7 hours. And voila!

Notes on the finished product: 
Mine turned out a little dry. Tasty, but dry. If I did this recipe again I might cook it a little less. The original recipe poster also noted that her Crock seals off all escaping moisture, so it could also be due to my Black Friday special CrockPot. But I tend towards loyalty. And thrift. So I'll stick with this one for now.


For starters, my name is Lindsay. My mother claims she didn’t name me after Lindsay Wagner who counts sheep in the sleep number commercial, but I’m not convinced. 

{Color Me Rad! I'm on the left and Cags is on the right.}

I’ve thrown around the idea of writing a blog for several years now. First, it was going to be a style blog. Then it was going to be a running blog. The final stimulus that prompted me to take the final leap was my decision to try out a paleo-based diet (I'll get into that more later). So now I shall have a running-food-shenanigans blog.

My goals for this blog are to encourage adventure, fun, and accountability. For example, if I were currently sitting here eating a delicious veggie lasagna that my roommate made- that is nowhere near paleo- under the excuse of already trashing my diet at the Hot Chocolate 15k this morning with my friend KB, I would definitely tell you. I would also tell you if I were waiting for warm gooey chocolate chip cookies to come out of the oven. If that were the case, of course.

{If I had been at the Hot Chocolate 15k, this is what KB and I would look like after the finish.}

I started running (intentionally) during the summer of 2011. I started running a ½ mile down hill, gradually increasing the second ½ up the hill, mailbox by mailbox, until I made the full mile. After I got that whole mile under my belt, I ran my first race: The Knoxville half marathon in April 2012 with a time of 2:11:39. Then I ran the Savannah Rock N' Roll full marathon in November 2012 in 4:37:44. My incredible running buddy, Hales, was with me through both of these races.

{Me (left) and Hales at the Savannah Rock N' Roll Marathon expo!}

A down and dirty about me: I studied War and Global Health during my undergrad years at the University of Tennessee, intending to be a surgeon in areas of armed conflict. Since then, I have left behind some of the boldness of my youth and decided to pursue a career as a physician's assistant. Currently, I work two jobs in healthcare and fitness. I'm either super organized or a hot mess. I tend toward the latter. I love chocolate and my adorable Saint Bernard, Molly.

I'm not perfect at sticking to a diet or making every training run. I don't eat strictly paleo.  I will use Instagram to make myself look like a better photographer. I will be awkward as I try to navigate the path of what and what not to send into the ether. This blog is a place to explore different areas of life and to challenge me to strive for new experiences. A journey, if you will, through this thing called life. 

I welcome feedback and comments! Thanks for stopping by!

Coming up: 
- Crock-Pot Honey Apply Pork Tenderloin
- Hot Chocolate 15k Recap 

Stay tuned!...

Please stay tuned as I get my blog up and running!