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Workouts by 6:40 am = Free Evening

Must Run Kind of Morning
Last night we had a front move through that finally cooled us down below 100 degrees. They forecast it to be 73 degrees this morning, which is downright cold at this point. I knew that I was going to run no matter what. The only problem is that it's staying dark much later. I used to be able to head out at 5:45 am with some light, now it's almost 6 until there is any sort of light.

So, I decided to do biceps and triceps first while waiting for it to get light enough to safely run. I did drop sets again 4 x 10 except for preacher curls, and they were killer for me this morning. Felt super weak. But, I got it done.

Hammer curls
Overhead triceps extension
Zottman curls
Preacher curls 4x8 (seriously loathe these)
Lying dumbbell triceps extensions
1 set of 21's for biceps curls (7 half up, 7 half down, 7 full)
Weighted triceps dips - 16 reps

Jason ran with me. We did a fairly easy 4-mile run. It felt so nice to be able to run without being completely soaked before the first half mile. The humidity was fairly low and there was a nice, easy breeze. I wasn't dreaming of sprinklers or large water puddles.

What to Do With a Free Evening?
It was so nice to have a completely free evening after work since my workouts were done. Jason went and rode his bike, so I had the house to myself. Well, with the exception of these guys (Laura, this is for you):
Madeline (Maddie)

I decided to take the time to make some homemade seitan (this time I used a low-sodium vegetable bouillon) and make up some veggie burgers to freeze. I had some cooked lentils, but not enough for more than 2 patties, so I ended up making Red Bean & Lentil Burgers.

Red Bean & Lentil Burgers

1 can red beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup (approximately) cooked lentils
1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax mixed with 3 tbsp hot water)
1/2 cup oats (divided)
1/4 cup minced onion or can use onion flakes rehydrated
1 large carrot shredded 
1/8 cup sunflower seeds
To taste: salt, pepper, red pepper, garlic powder, parsley

In food processor, pulse the nuts and 1/4 cup of the oats (not too fine). Add in the beans, onions, carrot, and spices and pulse until mixture is smooth with some chunks if desired. Transfer to large bowl and stir in flax egg and remaining oats. Form into patties and bake at 425 degrees approximately 20 minutes. Flip and cook another 20 minutes.

Of course, I couldn't possibly have either of those for dinner. Instead I made something entirely different. I decided to make Grilled Veggies with Honey Citrus Couscous. It was too nice to get out and grill this evening.

Grilled Veggies with Honey Citrus Couscous
1 box whole-wheat couscous
1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (chickpeas would be better)
1 - 2 yellow squash, cut into thick strips
1 zucchini, cut into thick strips
1/2 red onion, large rings
Fresh spinach
1/4 cup orange juice
Honey - to taste
Parsley - to taste
3 oz honey goat cheese (optional)


Grill squash and onion on indoor or outdoor grill then cube/dice once cooked.

Cook couscous according to package directions adding in the orange juice, honey, and parsley. Once cooked, stir in the chickpeas and vegetables. Once cooled, crumble in goat cheese if desired.

On the side, I grilled some Gardein Chick'n Scallopini with a honey orange juice marinade that I brushed on (OJ, honey, balsamic vinegar).
This turned out really well. It wasn't too sweet. The slight honey undertone paired really nicely with the acid in the OJ and the grilled flavor of the veggies. Definitely a winner.


  1. I am totally doing those Zottman curls tomorrow! Those pups are super cute! I would say they were totally happy to have you hanging with them tonight! Your eats look delicious. We had apple dumplings tonight. I would feel bad, but of course I made them low fat/low sugar and I had them with a scoop of my oatmeal flax ice cream. Now I am wishing I had one of your burgers! Red beans make the best bean burgers...hands down. Enjoy your evening sweetie!

  2. Dinner looks great.I really need to make lentil burgers, I tried them months ago and loved them.

  3. Awwww, such cute pups!!! Glad your dinner was a good one!

  4. Oh gosh, those puppies are so cute! I'm in love with the picture of Heath.

  5. 73 degrees must have felt soooo good!
    Super cute puppy pics!

  6. I've noticed it staying darker longer in the mornings too. Soon enough it will be better with daylight savings time. Love that extra hour of sleep that goes with it too.

    I love when I have a random free evening. I usually spend it reading - either a book or blogs. :)

  7. I am totally smitten with the pups. Heath looks so laid back. Such cute babies you have!

    Dinner looks great but seriously the pups are too cute I am having trouble focusing on anything else.


  8. Honey Citrus Couscous..nice, i would just use the marinade kinda as a salad dressing and sometimes, i do. i have one i called holiday orange spice vinagrette on my site, same concept

    thanks for the tofu deets. god what a score on dry 'fu!

    cute puppers :)


  9. Love the puppy photos. I have been loving having free evenings too, it's one of the best perks of AM workouts.

  10. 73 degrees sounds like heaven!!!! And one of your pups has the best name ever...

  11. O I wish I could get my workouts down as early as you! I usually start around 9am and I had to work at that! I used start at like noon! Its been hotter in LA today, dont kill me, but the high in my area was 88!

  12. Awww they are beautiful! They're spaniels right? Roxie our pup is a spaniel cross, I love the eyes, so expressive! They are really cute! Thanks for posting :-)

  13. I wish we were neighbors we could have some big time fun at the gym and in the kitchen!

  14. Cuuuuuuuuuuuute doggies! Great job on the run. I love it when Mother Nature gives us a break and we can finally enjoy a run! Gorgeous foodies, too...I'm probably going to try the burgers very soon! :)

  15. Sarena @ The Non-Dairy Queen Let me know how you like (or don't) like them. They really work the forearms too. Apple dumplings? I know you posted the recipe....

    Nicci @ Nifty Eats Love making veggie burgers. Really easy and so much healthier than store-bought too. Even better, they freeze for later use.

    Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg Thanks girl - I knew you would also appreciate pup pictures.

    Krystina @ Organically Me Thanks girl - Heath is such a sweet boy.

    Kara @ My Wellnest It really felt fantastic. Normally I am all about 85 degrees, but with our recent heat, bring on 60!

    Tina @ Faith Fitness and Fun so hard to believe that fall really is right around the corner! I went to bed early to read too!

    Alicia @ Vegan Epicurean Awww, thank you! Oh yes, he's definitely one laid back dude. Maddie, um, you've heard stories. Her cuteness is what save her ;-)

    Averie @ Loves Veggies and Yoga Maybe I got the honey idea from seeing all of your recent tofu recipes - subliminal. I rarely use honey. It just sounded good.

    Sarah @ Run Sarah Yep, the free evenings definitely make up for getting up so early.

    Madeline @ Greens and Jeans LOL - though she does get called a handful of other names teehee ;-)

    Eden's Eats I don't always get the workouts done so early mind you. Some days are better than others. 88??? That's downright cold LOL

    Laura @ Box Run Eat Thanks girl. Yep, cocker spaniels. Love spaniels.

    Joanna Sutter @ Fitness & Spice Oh I know - we could do some major damage ;-)

    Tiffany @ Spartanette Training Thank you - we're partial to them too ;-) It was definitely a refreshing break. Let me know if you give these a shot.

  16. Dinner looks fabulous! You have so much will power I have no idea how you do it!


  17. Free night's to do with them what you want is awesome! EXACTLY why I favor getting my workouts done in the AM - though, there's something to be said for a PM workout, especially after a rough day at work. Or on a super-tired wake-up day when NOTHING sounds enjoyable at 5am ;) Glad you had a fab night!!

  18. oh your so lucky it got down to 73. Our low this morning was 81, ugh! With lots of humidity.
    I have to applaud you and all your delicious veggie burgers you make. They always look amazing!

  19. Isn't it crazy the amount of time you can have in the evenings after getting it all done in the AM.

    I am praying for cooler temps too, this is getting to be one crazy hot summer.

    Love the pics of your babies!

  20. Your dogs are just so adorable!
    The couscous sounds amazing!! I love the addition of OJ! Yum!

  21. 73 is so nice! Our low was still in the lower eighties. Beats nineties though. The pups are adorable! They look like little snuggle bugs!

  22. OH my word, your pups are adorable! Love the sound of those burgers, too.

  23. Erica @ Fashion Meets Food Willpower?? Me? That's why I have to make healthier foods LOL

    Jessica @ EatDrinkBreatheSweat Sometimes an afternoon workout is much-needed isn't it? Good stress release after a long hard day.

    Lindsay @ Cotter Crunch Well, the humidity is right back up there again - at least we had one day. Hope you guys get a break soon. And thank you for the veggie burger compliment!

    Nichole @ Live for the Run It really is worth getting up and getting it done isn't it. As much as I might be grumbling the whole time LOL. It has been a fairly miserable summer for heat most definitely.

    Kristen @ Swanky Dietitian The OJ really brightened up the flavors. I was really happy with how it turned out.

    Lindsay @ Pancakes N Pajamas Heath is definitely the snuggler. Maddie...well, she's a bit odd ;-)

    Sarah @ The Ordinary Vegetarian Awww, thank you. They think they're pretty cute too ;-) Hopefully they turned out. I put them in the freezer already.

  24. I love citrusy flavours in my dinners! That couscous sounds delicious.


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