Best Smoothie I Ever Made

This post is a quickie. Just had to tell about the smoothie I threw together tonight. The Fella ran his first 10K tonight on a whim and he requested a potassium smoothie to help stave off the Charlie horses (leg cramps) that have been waking him up. So I whipped up this using what I had on hand and it was so freakin delicious!

Peach Banana Smoothie

1c. milk of choice
1c. 0 % Greek yogurt
1 frozen banana
1 Ohio peach (I did not peel this)
4-6 ice cubes
1 t vanilla extract
1 T honey
1/4 t stevia powder

That’s it. This was honestly the best tasting smoothie I’ve ever made!

I’ve stopped ‘pooing…

That’s ‘poo as in short for shampoo. I haven’t used shampoo to cleanse my hair for the past 9+ months!

I know what you are thinking, “What the what?!”  But I’m truly pleased with how well this works.  It’s natural, it’s cheap and I would normally have the necessary ingredients on hand anyway.  I also like that I am not consuming as much packaging and not adding extra chemicals or detergents to our water system.  I have somewhat thick hair that is moderately curly and hangs just past my shoulders.  *Update* I just had all of my hair cut off today.  I originally started the draft for this post over a month ago.  My hair tends toward being frizzy while my scalp tends toward being oily.  In fact I have suffered from  seborrhoeic dermatitis on my scalp since I was a little kid.  I started using sulfate free shampoos and conditioners more than a year before I went no ‘poo.  That helped my seborrhea somewhat but I still had regular flare ups.  I did some research and found a lot of information about going no ‘poo and using the baking soda/apple cider vinegar method.  (I’ll include some good, educational links at the bottom of this post.)  Once I got through a brief adjustment period, the no ‘poo method had all but cured my seborrhea.  And I feel better about the ecology and economy of no ‘pooing.

No ‘Poo Ingredients (Not the bananas. Those were incidental, although I’ve heard they are a great natural conditioner. Hmm, may have to try that.)

I cleanse my hair about two times per week with a mixture of baking soda and water with a few drops of Dr. Bronner’s Pure Castille Liquid Soap in peppermint and a drop or two of tea tree oil.  (I also use Dr. Bronners peppermint and tea tree oil diluted with water as my everyday bodywash.  Dr. B’s is the BEST!  It lasts forever and the peppermint is so tingly and refreshing.)  After I cleanse, I condition my hair with a mixture of apple cider vinegar and water.  On off days I usually just rinse my hair and massage my scalp under the shower to distribute the natural scalp oils.  I find it’s also good to give my hair a good brushing from scalp to tip on days when I am not rinsing or cleansing to help distribute the natural oils.  This keeps my hair and scalp looking and feeling healthy.

The ratios of baking soda to water and AC vinegar to water depends on your hair type.  From what I’ve read, use more baking soda if you tend to have oily hair and use more AC vinegar if you tend to have dry hair.  I tend to have oily scalp but dry hair so I just play around with the ratios until I get it the way I like it.  I can definitely tell when I don’t use enough AC vinegar in my ratio.  My hair is smooth and shiny when I have about a 1:1 or 1:2 ratio of AC vinegar.  I use about 1:3 or 1:4 ratio of baking soda to water for the cleanse and add a few drops each of Dr. Bronners and tea tree oil.  I store both mixtures in small, refillable bottles and keep them in my shower.

The only drawback that I’ve found with the no ‘poo method is that I cannot use the the styling products that I used to use.  It’s been an adjustment to find the right products to use now.  You see, I now cannot use any products containing silicone.  Basically any haircare ingredient that ends with -one or -cone is a silicone.  Silicone is the wonderful elixer that makes hair shiny and reduces frizz.  It’s in most anti-frizz serums and in many if not most conditioners and styling products.  But the only way to get silicone out of hair is with surfactant-based, traditional shampoos.  With the no ‘poo method, the silicone products will just build up on the hair and make it appear dull, dry and unhealthy.  I’ve found two products that I like so far and I’d like to try others but I don’t want a collection of bottles and tubes hanging around my tiny bathroom.  So, until I run out of what I have or come across sample sizes of new products, I’m sticking with what works so far.  Namely, Yes to Carrots leave-in conditioner and Aveda Confixor liquid gel.  I use both after I cleanse or after I rinse.  On days where I don’t cleanse or rinse, I just use water and my hands to get my curls to behave.

Here are a few very informative blog posts about the No ‘Poo method:

Simple Mom

Crunchy Betty

Beautiful Somehow

What are some things (weird or otherwise) that you do in an effort to be more green, healthy or to save money?

My First 5Ks: Wrap up

Purple Stride 5K at the Cleveland Zoo

2012 Purple Stride 5K at the Cleveland Zoo 

I did it!  I met my goal of finishing my first 5K in 45minutes doing a combination jog/walk.  I wasn’t really able to follow my original plan which looked like this:

1st Mile – jog 1/2 then walk 1/2

2nd Mile – jog 1 mile

3rd Mile – walk 1/2 then finish race jogging 0.60 mile

The course at the zoo was kind of weird because it wasn’t really a loop but rather doubled back in a few places.  Also the course starts and ends witha short but steep hill. (That’s the part in the NW quadrant of the map.) And in the middle of the course there is moderately steep hill that is just so long that it’s a killer.  (See the entire South portion of the map between miles 1 and 2.)  Up hill for almost 1/2 mile and down hill for almost 1/2 mile.  Whew!  I had to walk nearly all of the hills going up.  I have not trained with any significant elevation changes.

As you can see in the map from my Nike+ app, my pace was pretty slow even when I was jogging.  I’m okay with that.  In fact, I’m going to tell you something majorly embarrassing:  I’m pretty sure I was the slowest runner in the 5K.  Update: I checked the results online and I actually finished ahead of two other runners.  But hey, that means I have no where to go but up!  More than half of the participants did not actually run.  Most of them were doing the 5K walk which was supposed to start an hour after the run but actually started like 5 seconds after the runners began.  Many of the walkers ended up wandering around the zoo rather than following the 5K route.  This meant that at several points in the race the walkers were just standing around clogging up the route  for the runners.  This was super frustrating and kinda stressed me out.

A few good points about this first 5K:  I was joined by my good friend Camilla, The Fella and a new friend Susan.  After the race we enjoyed free fruit, water and Luna bars.  We were also allowed to checkout the zoo exhibits for free.  We had fun after the race visiting the primates and rainforest exhibits.

2012 Brecksville Home Days 5K Run

My second 5K took place exactly two weeks after the Purple Stride.  The Brecksville Home Days Run was very well organized and went smoothly.  My time wasn’t so great for this one but there were also a lot of hills and it was super hot that morning.  Hills definitely slow me down.  Slow, as in I walk up hills.  :)  But I had fun.  The Fella did this race with me as well as my friend (and boss), Amy.  After the race we stretched in the grass and enjoyed free fruit and water.

A Shot In The Dark 2 Mile Run

Ready for the FUN run!

My third and most recent race was the Winking Lizard’s A Shot In The Dark.  This race took place two weeks after my last race.  I was joined once again by Camilla.  Camilla’s beau and The Fella did the 4 mile run (!) while Camilla and I did the 2 mile fun run.  This race was a lot of fun.  First of all 2 miles is not tough for me and the weather was great.  Also, the race took place in the middle of downtown Cleveland which was just fun!  After the race the event turned into a street party with a beer garden, live music and free Winking Lizard sandwiches for all race participants.  You cannot beat that!

The Fella wrapping up 4 miles in under 36 minutes. Wow!

Now, I am looking here for the next race for The Fella and me.  I’d like to keep adding these events to my calendar for the rest of the summer and  into the fall.  I’m actually pretty excited about fall races and fall running in general.  I loved running in spring weather and since fall is my absolute favorite time of the year here in Cleveland, I just know that running this fall is going to be awesome!

Have you ever done a 5K or a Fun Run?  What upcoming fitness events are you looking forward to?