Monthly Archives: June 2014

Base Building Week 11

Another good week of training is in the books!  This past week was the final week of mileage increases and since I started base building 10 weeks ago, I’ve really come a long way.  With the weather being hot and humid lately I thought I might struggle this week.  I didn’t!  Each of my runs went as planned and heading in a recovery week, I am really happy with how all of the base building went.

I started the base building process with 30 miles then added 2 miles each week until I hit 50.  I ran a bit more than 50 this week and here’s how I did it:

Monday:  Race Pace 4 miles.  I wasn’t sure about my foot but it felt better and with the evening’s low humidity, I pushed hard on this outing and turned in a solid performance.
Tuesday:  LSD 9 miles and heavy front squats.  It was a little warm running through the state park in spite of the shade and I took it slow at the start.  I finished the run strong and my squats felt really good.
Wednesday: Recovery 45 minutes.  Man, did I need it.  My legs were fried from Tuesday’s workouts and I was more than happy to go nice and easy in the early morning humidity.
Thursday: LSD 8 miles.  After my sore legs on Wednesday I expected this to be more of a struggle than it was.  A warm up mile led to seven more that were about 10 seconds faster per mile than I had planned on but the pace felt good, so I stuck with it.
Friday:  30 minutes barefoot in the deep, soft sand.  I was trying to test my foot a bit and it help up.  I threw in a few pick-ups to get my quads and calves burning, making this base buildingworkout a good mini-threshold session then cooled down and recovered with 10 minutes very easy.  Afternoon deadlifts wrapped up my Virgina Beach workouts for the week.
Saturday:  1200M repeats over hills while at home in Philadelphia.  I was really excited to get some hill work in and I needed to do some speed work, too, so why not put them together?  It was a tough workout that felt good and didn’t leave me feeling exhausted for Sunday’s long run.  I also took my brand new shoes out for a spin on this run and not only was I bright and sparkly, my feet felt great and I totally forgot about the pain I had had a week earlier.
Sunday:  A long run to get those remaining miles, I ended up with 11.5 miles littered with surges at race pace on a shady, fairly flat trip around the Falls Bridge Loop.  I felt like I could have kept going for another 4-5 miles which really made me feel good and got me exciting to enjoy some rest before putting my legs to the test with some hard, fast long runs.

With my base building complete, I’m looking forward to seeing how I feel in a few weeks.  The next seven days will be lots of recovery with easy, short runs and light cross training to give my body a break.  I’ll probably do another 50 mile week (August?) to see what I’ve retained as I roll into my training plan for Myrtle Beach in October.  I also registered for Rock N Roll Virginia Beach this weekend.  I’m looking at it as a long training run that’s sure to be hot and humid with 10,000 of my running buddies.  I have no finish time expectations, hoping to have as much fun as I did in Nashville and stay motivated through the dog days of August.

Meredith

Are you running RnR VB?  How’s your training going? 

Blogger Life Updates

It’s time for a few Life Updates!  I took a Blog Vacation last week and while I didn’t skip out on writing about tons of important, interesting and fun things, some of the things I’ve mentioned in previous posts have changed.  This is different than a Right Now post because most of the things I talk about in those posts are brand new, and exciting.  Life Updates brings back things from previous posts and does exactly what it says: updates you on my progress.  Here we go!

Life Updates #1:  My foot pain from last week is gone.  Thank goodness.  I went out for an easy run Monday evening just to see how it went.  As I ran, the dull ache started in my foot, then crept up into my ankle and shin.  A good ankle stretch and shin rub fixed it right up and the rest of my six miler felt really good.  I was glad it wasn’t anything serious and life updatesrecalled that during Tuesday’s run I had rolled my left ankle twice on two holes in the sand.  Phew!  Still injury free!

Life Updates #2:  Over the winter I went on a shopping spree at Total Wine.  You can check out the post here where I said I’d review each of the bottles as I drank them.  I’ve done a not so great job of following through on that.  I’ll still make en effort, though, and this past weekend Doug and I opened another one of those bottles.  We selected a 2010 Le Columbier Vieilles Vignes from the wine rack and it was fantastic.  We let the room temperature red wine breathe for about twenty minutes before diving in to the medium to full-bodied, sweet, raspberry and cherry flavors that made it wonderful.  It was an inexpensive French bottle and we were very happy with it.  Definitely give it a try if you’re in the mood for something red.

Life Updates #3:  My plants!  I wrote about my first foray into the world of green thumbs in this post.  I admitted I was worried about being able to keep them alive and must admit I’m doing a pretty good job and enjoying it.  Not to toot my own horn, but the happy little green guys growing like crazy.  Here they are after being watered on the deck and hanginglife updates out at home.  life updates life updates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s going on with you?  Any exciting life updates?  How are your plants handling the summer heat?

Meredith

Taking My First Blog Vacation

I’m back!  I took my first blog vacation last week and I missed it.  I broke away from my own posts, made no visits to BlogLovin’ and WordPress and took a week to just relax.  Don’t worry, it was a fairly uneventful week in the life of FitNiceRunner and you didn’t miss much on my end.  Even though it was nice to have a little more free time I do feel like I blog vacationmissed out on lots of everyone’s good news.  Bring on the catching up!

Blog vacation week was a 48 mile training week and the weather was a little bit better than the week before.  All of my workouts felt like an improvement on last week.  Here’s how they broke down:
Monday:  Weather was really nice, not too humid so I went out for some speed work.  6 mile pick-up run.
Tuesday:  7 miles barefoot in the deep, soft sand and I paid for the hour of slip sliding around with a pair of nasty blisters on the bottom of my left foot.  Not too painful, I covered them up and did an afternoon heavy lifting session that felt amazing.  Usually a post day, I used my blog vacation to spend a little extra time with my friends at EquiKids.
Wednesday:  My legs were sore and tired from Tuesday’s workouts.  Easy 45 minute evening recovery run in 95 degree heat.  Low humidity but still very easy :).
Thursday:  I really wanted to get some fast running in on the cooler, but still humid, morning.  I ran 8 miles with surges a bit faster than half marathon pace that felt good considering the soupy air made it hard to recover.  As a bonus on this run I met the lovely Leisa Villani, who holds several Virginia State Records, when I stopped at my usual water fountain.  A great dose of inspiration to fight through this hot summer weather and keep working hard.  Deadlifts in the afternoon.  I love deadlifts.
Friday:  HUMID!  A tough morning 12 miler that was hot, sunny and painful.  I cut my intended 15 miler short because I just couldn’t hang.  My legs were tired, the air was hard to breathe, I didn’t want to pass out and some days you just don’t have it.  It was one of those mornings.  Kind of mad at myself for not pushing through, I went back out in the afternoon.  It was much nicer in spite of the higher temperature and I ran through a few 400M repeats.  Luckily, the humidity was way down which made these much better than I expected.
Friday Post Run:  With socks and shoes on, I had completely forgotten about those blisters from Tuesday.  I was reminded Friday night.  I had a little bit of soreness on the top of my left foot.  My first thought was, of course, the dreaded stress fracture.  A good old fashioned massage made the aching go away and I think it’s a bit of tendonitis from all the hard work my feet did on the sand.
Saturday:  Wanted to see how the foot would feel after some rest and took the day off.
Sunday:  Rest worked and the foot felt good when I went out for an easy four mile recovery run to wrap up the running week.

I ended my blog vacation by participating in last night’s RunChat on Twitter.  My bedtime makes it tough for me to chime in during the 10pm EST chats so it’s important to make it whenever I can.  The running community is amazing and I love meeting other runners and hearing their questions, answers and stories (even if it is only virtually).  It was a great way to get my head in gear to start blogging again and I’m glad to be back!

Meredith

Have you taken a blog vacation?  For how long?  Was it hard to get started again?

Death By Humidity Training Week in Review

Avoiding Death by Humidity was definitely the theme of this week’s 46 miles.  My schedule ended up mangled, I logged almost all of my miles at a slower than I’d like pace and I swallowed approximately one half dose of speed work.  Yes, it’s summer in Virginia Beach and I knew this was coming.  It’s just come on a little bit strong, all at once for my taste.  Oh, well.  This week’s running motto was: Take it slow, drink tons of water and survive.

You can see my original schedule for the week here but this is what really happened, why it happened and how I feel about it.

Monday:  Very warm, humid morning, opted to push long run to Wednesday after some predicted rain when it was supposed to be cooler.  Avoided Death by Humidity and had a great 5.65 mile beach run in the evening.  40.35 miles to go.
Tuesday:  Still hot and humid.  Heavy lifting front squats (new 3RM PR!) and no running, as planned.
Wednesday:
Morning:  Was not cooler and my legs were sore from Tuesday.  I took Death by Humidity head on at 7am anyway.  I wanted to get my long run in over with but when I walked out the front door, I quickly reconsidered.  Long run –> Friday.  I fought through eight slow, leg screaming, sweaty miles that induced both dizziness and nausea in the 82 degree, 90% humidity of the morning.  It was horrible.  Soul crushing.  One of the worst runs I can recall, ever.  32.35 miles to go.
Evening:  When 5:30p rolled around, I went back out for seven more miles.  There was a hint of rain in the air, cloud cover, the temperature was five degrees cooler and my legs felt pretty good.  Yay!  It did rain, but barely.  Just enough precipitation fell to make the roads steam and tease me.  Useless, really.  While not a great run, this one was a bit faster than the morning and altogether much better.  25.35 miles to go.
Thursday:  By this point I had thrown my schedule to the wind and was just trying to get 46 miles in without passing out.  I hit the Boardwalk for a nice easy five miler that, sans the risk of heat stroke, would have been speed work.  More Death by Humidity.  It wasn’t incredibly hot but the sun was shining, the humidity was horrendous (90%) and my legs were still beat up.  Definitely a struggle.  20.35 miles to go.
Friday:
Morning:  LSD 15.  LSD 10.  Even though I was again staring Death by Humidity in the face, I was eager to get these miles in the books.  A much slower than half marathon pace run on tired but working legs that started out great in spite of the 94% (!) humidity, my watch started telling me I had a low battery around mile 8.5.  Deep down I was ecstatic.  I knew the battery would only last another 15 minutes and since I was running a route on which I didn’t know my distance marks, I was glad to hit the brakes at 10 miles.  Survival and racking up the miles trump any endurance goal at this time of year.  Tons of time before Myrtle Beach’s PR effort.  In the end my legs were fried and I desperately needed clothing that wasn’t soaked in my own perspiration.  10.35 miles to go.
Evening:  No way I want to get up at 4am tomorrow (Saturday) before my 7am client, so let’s go get those last Friday five.  With no expectations aside from a dose of suffering and fighting to avoid Death by Humidity once again, this run went extremely well.  An easy recovery outing, I averaged an 8:18 pace and finished the workout day much happier than I began it.  5.35 miles to go.
Saturday:  A post work jaunt on the beach wrapped up the week’s miles.  It was windy (18mph) but the humidity was way down, the weather was almost perfect and my legs felt surprisingly fresh.  I ran easy in the soft, deep sand for four miles then closed with a little bit of speed work.  Four 100M soft sand sprints in the books helped me finish the week feeling much better than I started it.  0 miles to go.

All in all it wasn’t that bad of a week.  I stayed injury free, completed my miles, survived Death by Humidity and ended on a high note.  Next week is supposed to be even warmer.  And, I’ll assume, more humid.  I’ll be shuffling through 48 miles and with only one week remaining after that in base building, I hope I can stay motivated.

Meredith

How was your training week?  How do you deal with summer heat conditions?

Right Now: Playing, Snacking, Dining

Welcome to the June edition of Right Now!  In this month’s post, I cover RunChat Hunt 3.0, the delicious Rice Cake and a new restaurant where Doug and I recently had a delectable dining experience.

PlayingRunChat Hunt 3.0!  I’m not a fan of running with my phone or a camera but participating in the third edition of RunChat’s scavenger hunt helps me suffer through it a bit on short runs.  A few of the items I’ve photographed are things I see regularly when I’m out, but made a special trip past with my phone to snap a photo since I don’t run too far with my big Nokia Lumia.  You can find the complete list of items to photograph and contest rules here.  It runs (pun intended) through the entire month of June and there are some great prizes up diningfor grabs.  It’s not only fun to capture your own photos, but see what other people snap as well.

Snacking:  I used to eat these when I was a kid.  I even tried to put one in the VCR once, or so my parents tell me.  I passed these Quaker Lightly Salted Rice Cakes in the supermarket aisle a few weeks ago and picked up a package.  I have since gotten wholeheartedly back on the Rice Cake train after a long stop in No-Puffed-Rice-Ville.  Put a layer of peanut butter on top and the tasty, gluten free, low fat snack is a perfect between meal appetite satisfier that won’t upset your tummy before a hard run.  Swing by your favorite grocery and pick some up today.  You won’t be disappointed.

Dining:  Doug and I recently had a wonderful dinner at 219 American Bistro in Norfolk.  We stumbled upon it on a spur of the moment night out in Norfolk and were very happy to have done so.  Our service was great, the food was delectable, the atmosphere calm and quiet.  Our meals were excellent and the valet parking was a treat on busy Granby street.  I ordered duck that melted in my mouth and Doug’s salmon paired perfectly with the jasmine rice it was served over.  I didn’t plan on writing a full or official review and I’ve held off on posting about it for three weeks, but it was a great dining experience that I definitely recommend checking out when you have the chance.

Those are a few of the latest and greatest things in the life of FitNiceRunner and July’s edition is sure to be just as much fun.  Follow me on Twitter and Facebook for more up to the minute goings on and be sure to let me know what you’re getting into!

Meredith

What’s your newest and favorite snack?  Any new restaurants to recommend?

Staying in the Fight Webinar

Monday afternoon I attended (viewed?) a webinar titled ‘Staying in the Fight’.  Hosted by SEALFit founder and retired SEAL Commander Mark Divine, I must say I got more than I expected from the presentation.  ‘Staying in the Fight’ covered sections of Coach Divine’s book, 8 Weeks to SEALFit.  Emotional resiliency, mental toughness and decisiveness.  It was invaluable to hear things in a way I hadn’t heard or read them before.  I know I’m mentally strong (though the SEALs definitely have me beat).  I fought through enough long runs at the end of long weeks full of hard, heavy and fast workouts to know I can handle whatever it is I’m going through.  Like that GoRuck Light last year.  staying in the fight

My mental toughness has increased dramatically over the last three years, though emotional awareness is an area where I still have lots of room for improvement and Coach Divine’s lecture was loaded with tons of valuable information on how to do so.  I credit the eighteen months I spent fighting and suffering through SEALFit workouts with fixing my runner’s knee problems, teaching me about Staying in the Fight without even being aware I was learning it and showing me I was capable of more than I expected.

I discovered SEALFit in early 2011 when I was looking for something new.  I wasn’t running very much back then due to knee issues but had just about had it with the annoying left knee problems.  Knowing that my pain came from weakness more so then structural damage, even though I do have a tiny bit of a tear in the left one, I also recognized that the solution was getting stronger.  Running wasn’t going to get it done, it just made the cycle begin again.  Run, pain, rest.  My lifting regimen was very traditional back then and as I quickly discovered, the standard legs, arms, back/chest and cardio days weren’t making it much better.  I knew about, and used, functional fitness with clients and occasionally used it in my own workouts, but it took finding SEALFit and enjoying the daily challenge it presented to really show me the huge benefits functional training has over a more traditional body building type schedule, especially for a runner.

Looking back at my logs from two and a half years ago, I never completed one single full workout with the prescribed weights and took twice as long as everyone in the comments.  But I didn’t care.  I felt stronger, my knee didn’t hurt and I made progress by breaking workouts into two a days, sometimes skipping sections (overhead squats, snatches) and without even knowing it, getting mentally tougher.  By the time spring 2012 rolled around and I started to train for my first half marathon, my knee hadn’t bothered me for months and I knew, even though I hadn’t run more than 3 miles at a time in six months, I could and would, cross that finish line in under two hours (1:54.04).

Today I’m focused on running 40-50 miles a week and breaking 1:30.00 and unwilling to fight through SEALFit workouts on a daily basis, but the heavy lifting part of my training plan is incredibly important and I can complete lots of my Crossfit workouts as prescribed.  I’m also able to suck it up when it’s hot, humid, early, late, snowing or raining, when I’m hungry, tired or grumpy and get out to run or in the gym to lift.  Thanks to SEALFit, I’ll be Staying in the Fight until I reach my current goals, set new ones and repeat.

I highly recommend Coach Divine’s books, The Way of the SEAL, Unbeatable Mind and 8 Weeks to SEALFit.  I read them a while ago and Monday’s Staying in the Fight webinar was a great refresher as I head into some hard summer training that’s sure to challenge my mental toughness and help my emotional awareness grow.

Meredith

Are you familiar with SEALFit?  How to you work on mental toughness and emotional resiliency?

Training Week in Review: 44 Miles

Happy Sunday!  I wrapped up a week that featured 44 miles yesterday and have today off.  I went on a 10 mile bike ride last Sunday which means this is my first total rest day in 13 days!  My legs feel surprisingly good after a hard week and I’m ready to get after these next few weeks of training before taking a full week off.  I’ll then have a few flex weeks to play and jump into Myrtle Beach training in August.  Here’s how each of this week’s 44 miles played out:

Monday:  15 mile long run44 miles
Tuesday:  Crossfit, front squats
WednesdayNational Running Day!  Speed work, race pace work and recovery for 13.5 miles
Thursday:  Heavy lifting, power cleans
Friday:  10 mile, 10 seconds slower than half marathon pace long run
Saturday:  5 mile recovery
Sunday:  Rest!

That left me with a grand total of a bit more than 44 miles.  I was happy that my legs held up after not taking a day off the previous week and it makes me feel confident about where my training is heading.  I like getting a big chunk of miles out of the way early in the week, especially with the summer heating up and am going to stick with that until I move them to Fridays at the start of my 10 week plan for Myrtle Beach.

With 44 miles behind me, 46 miles are on the agenda for the second week of June.  I’m hoping to get in a 15 miler tomorrow to kick things off, but the current forecast shows early morning rain.  In fact, all of the weather isn’t going to be very friendly this week, with high temperatures and rain predicted everyday, so I might have trouble getting in all 46 miles the way I want.  My current schedule looks almost identical to this week’s but with a longer Saturday run.  If I have to break it up and do a few more two a days, I will, but I don’t look forward to the treadmill or fighting afternoon heat very much.

Meredith

What are your training plans this week?  Did last week go well?

National Running Day 2014

National Running day 2014 was a huge success!  I had so much fun doing both morning and evening runs with big groups of runners at every level.  As you might know, I am not one for running with my phone which unfortunately means I don’t have lots of fun National Running Day 2014 photos.  I did get some cool swag and win a raffle prize, though, so there are photos of those in this post!

My National Running Day 2014 schedule began with an early morning group Fun Run on the Boardwalk with J&A Racing.  They always do a great job with their races, and this little get together was no different.  Channel 13 was there reporting, bright and early, and every runner received a white J&A Racing lightweight hat.  I’m over there before the run on the left corner with my neon National Running Day 2014orange on.  Everyone took off just before 6am with plans to reconvene at roughly 6:45 and I ran a 5.5 mile 1600M ladder to get some speed work in before it got too hot.  After the run at 6:45, there was ice-cold bottled water and, if you wanted a snack, bags of pretzels to help fill your tummy.  I downed a bottle of water while chatting with a few other runners then walked back to my car and dropped off my new hat.  The air warmed up quite a bit as a 4.5 mile tempo run completed my 10 morning miles around 7:45 and left me looking forward to my evening shake out run.

After work, Doug and I went to the National Running Day 2014 Rock n Roll Virginia Beach Kick-Off event.  Sponsored by Final Kick Sports, we arrived about 30 minutes before the run was scheduled to start.  An early arrival gave us plenty of time to grab a snack from the crudities tray, drink a little extra water and collect our Rock n Roll Virginia Beach swag.  I’m National Running Day 2014partial to the tank from last year because I prefer to run/walk/lift in over t-shirts, but it’s still a nifty shirt.  The temperature had continued to climb since my morning near the water and after a bit of socializing, it was time for group to go out.  Off we went, with the sun bearing down and air hovering right around 80 degrees.  I had a great recovery run chatting with the group, even if it was warm, and we clocked in 3.5 nice, steady 8 minute miles.

After the run, the group gathered outside for raffles and announcements.  Each person who had gone through the Rock n Roll swag line had not only walked away with a lovely t-shirt, but a red raffle ticket.  As the winners were picked, I was surprised to hear Doug’s raffle ticket number.  He won a Maui Jim sunglasses care kit and a pair of Cablz.  He’ll have buy the shades to use them on :).  Final Kick Sports makes its home next to O’Leary’s Bar and Grill, and they got in on the National Running Day 2014 festivities as well.  Free beer until the keg ran out.  Doug and I took our sweaty selves and raffle winnings over and plopped down at the bar for dinner.  We downed a few complimentary adult sodas while watching the Phillies play and indulged in a massive plate of delicious nachos before heading home early.

Meredith

What did you do for National Running day 2014?  Any free beer?

Busy Weekend and Two Long Runs

A busy weekend is in the books and so are two long runs.  I kicked off the weekend with an early Saturday 13.5 miler and wrapped it up Monday morning with a tough 15 miler.  Luckily between the two long runs, there was plenty of fun to be had.

I had a good long run before 8am Beach Boot Camp Saturday morning, crunched down a protein bar and drank up 32 ounces of water during class to help my tired little legs recover.  After washing off our sandy feet, Doug and I began our busy weekend by going to brunch at Virginia Beach staple Doc Taylor’s.  We arrived early enough to avoid a long wait, enjoyed both busy weekendthe food and a few champagne infused glasses of orange juice with good service before making our way home.

After a round of foam rolling, showers and naps, we were ready to move on to Saturday evenings activities.  The next stop on our busy weekend adventure was Harbor Park and we ate dinner on the way.  We always have fun when we go to a Tides game, but had never seen it so crowded.  After evaluating the massive line for tickets and the breezy, temperature dropping conditions we weren’t really dressed for, ended up bailing on the game.  We eventually stumbled upon Norfolk Tap Room and had a blast.  They have a huge selection of beers, and we both got to try a few new things.  A crowd started to roll in when live music started at 9pm and we left not long after.  Definitely a place we’ll be visiting again.

Busy weekend rolled on when Doug and I spent Sunday afternoon riding our bikes through First Landing State Park down to the Oceanfront to attend the 2014 edition of Virginia Beach’s Patriotic Festival.  Before settling down on the beach for the air show, we grabbed a delicious lunch at Pizzerria, part of Big Italy.  Hopping back on our bikes and going South, the Boardwalk was bustling with activity.  Vendors, Navy, Marine, SEAL and Air Force recruitment and interaction stations abounded in the midst of thousands of strolling people.  We picked a spot just North of 16th Street and plopped down.  Over the next two and a half hours, we saw amazing feats of flight busy weekendand some super cool aircraft.  You can find a complete list here, but the F-22 Raptor and V-22 Osprey were definitely my favorites.  At the conclusion of the Air Show, we hopped back on our bikes and made for home.

A quiet evening was exactly what I needed to wind down from the busy weekend.  Burgers from the grill and Game of Thrones closed out the day and I hit the hay early to be ready for Monday morning’s 15 miler.  Yesterday’s run was OK.  My legs didn’t get a day of complete rest since Doug and I rode bikes Sunday so they were a little tired, but the weather was perfect and it definitely could have been worse.  Heavy lifting today should have me ready to go for National Running Day tomorrow.  I’ll be on the Boardwalk early at the J&A Racing Fun Run then spend the evening at Final Kick Sports for their joint National Running Day Celebration and Rock n Roll Virginia Beach Kick-Off.

Hopefully I’ll see you out there!

Meredith

What did you do this weekend?  Any National Running Day plans?

Quick Quinoa and Bean Chili

This Quinoa and Bean Chili didn’t really appeal to me when I first saw the recipe, but it is delicious!  As a meat eater, I was cautious about it’s vegetarian roots.  I usually do my meal prep on Thursday or Friday, and a Sunday recipe is an odd post for me, but I know lots of people do their meal prep on Sunday, and I couldn’t wait to share this one.  Filling and bursting with flavor, this meat, fish, poultry, dairy and egg free meal turned out to be one I’m sure I’ll make again.  It’s easy, and compared to chilies that required meat to be cooked through, super fast.

Quinoa and Bean Chili
Basics
Servings: 8
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: 1

Ingredients
3 cups vegetable stock (or water)
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 cup diced green pepper
3 cloves (1-1/2 teaspoons minced) garlic, chopped
1-1/2 cups frozen corn (2 ears – we like ours off the grill and cooled in the fridge for a day)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro (optional)
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1-15oz can Garbonzo beans, drained and rinsed (these can be subbed out for kidney beans, it’s a personal preference)
1-15oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
2-14.5oz cans diced tomatoes
1-8oz can of tomato sauce
1 packet chili seasoning (like heat?  Use hot!)

Instructions
1)  Chop onion, garlic, cilantro and pepper and cut corn from cob, if using non-frozen corn.
2)  Bring 2 cups vegetable stock (water) to boil and add quinoa.  Bring to a boil then simmer for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed.  Cover and set to side.
3)  Preheat large stock pot for 2 minutes then add oil, onion, pepper, garlic, corn and cilantro.  Brown lightly.
4)  Reduce heat and add beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, the final cup of vegetable stock, chili seasoning and quinoa.
5)  Simmer 20-25 minutes, stirring in cilantro if desired.
6)  Serve warm with an optional wedge of lime.quinoa and bean chiliThis Quinoa and Bean Chili is great for lunch or dinner and it freezes wonderfully.  It’s the first vegetarian meal I’ve blogged about, and I’m definitely going to add it to the recipes section on the FitNicePT blog.  Be sure to check out lots of my other favorite recipes both here and there.

Give this Quinoa and Bean Chili a try and let me know if you like it, too!

Meredith

Are you a vegetarian?  Do you ever have trouble finding new things to make?