An Afternoon in Bratislava

For years, Bo and his friends have laughed about the movie EuroTrip. It’s a completely ridiculous, National Lampoon’s style movie from 2004 that is a play on the many stereotypes that come along with an American teenager trip to Europe. At one point in the movie, the characters accidently end up in Bratislava with only $5 in their pocket.

Today, while on the road from Prague to Vienna, when we saw a sign for Bratislava we knew we had to cross the border for an afternoon adventure. Not only did it serve as a perfect lunch stop but it also allowed us to visit Slovakia, a country none of us had ever visited. IMG_5284

When we arrived in Bratislava we went straight to Church of St. Elisabeth, more commonly known as the Blue Church. Located in Old Town, it’s light blue color and mosaics gave it the nickname, the Blue Church. Built in 1907, it is the newest of the churches we’ve seen thus far on our adventures. Unfortunately we could only peer through the gate as the church wasn’t open for visitors, but the inside looked gorgeous and decorated with similar blue hues as the outside. 114 IMG_5288 After lunch we headed to Cafe Verne which was highly recommended by Yelp, Four Square and Trip Advisor for the inexpensive yet delicious hearty local cuisine. The cafe features seating both indoor and outdoor on a small terrace overlooking the square. 126 Unfortunately it was a bit chilly to sit outside so we opted for a seat inside the cafe surrounded by locals enjoying lunch and talking across tables.

124 119We ordered the items most often recommended on Yelp which included the goulash, gnocchi and fresh lemonade. The lemonade, was refreshing and a perfect afternoon drink, made with very little sweetener and sparkling water which gave it an extra kick. The goulash was hearty and made with pork pieces instead of the traditional beef we’ve had in the past. The gnocchi while delicious was far too rich for my taste due to the heavy cream sauce and the bacon topping. 123 122 45 minutes later we found ourselves leaving Bratislava full of delicious food and ready to continue our adventure towards Vienna. 131 If you find yourself driving between Prague, Vienna, Budapest or any of the other nearby cities I highly recommend a stop in Bratislava as it is a perfect afternoon spot rich in history and featuring multiple restaurants and cafe in the Old Town. In fact, if we’d had more time we would have explored Devin Castle and Michael’s Gate.

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Reset

Greetings from New York City where the current time is 9:51pm. My body feels and thinks it is 3:51am however since I’m still very much on Europe time after spending 13 days on that time zone. You know what’s really fun though? Flying out to the Pacific Northwest tomorrow at 6am so my body can be really, really confused.

Yup, by the time I land in New York City Friday evening, I will have logged 21,000 miles in less than a week. That is insane and hard to fathom. What’s even harder to fathom is having a super, strong PR worthy 10k race on Saturday morning during the New York Road Runner’s Oakley 10K.

Instead of throwing in the towel on this race, I’m doing the opposite and revving up my system for a great race by focusing on myself this week even though I’ll be traveling. This means plenty of sleep, back on the vitamin and supplement wagon, strong but efficient workouts, stretching, and smart eating and drinking choices. It won’t always be easy but I know that a PR will feel sweeter than any late nights or 3rd glasses of wine. You see that? I’m not being silly and saying no wine, I’m saying moderation.

Here’s how I started the reset process today in between a long work day and an evening filled with both fun and tedious errands including another shellac manicure, long line at the post office, dry cleaning, and meeting with the movers (!!!?!).

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From top:

Peach Protein Oats including 1/2 c rolled oats, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp almond extract, 1 scoop Designer Whey vanilla protein powder, water, and 2/3 c peaches.

Salad #1 for lunch including mixed greens, beets, red onions, grilled chicken, egg whites, apples, tomatoes, salt & pepper, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar.

Speed workout on the treadmill is the perfect way to end a long day when torrential rains force me inside. Today I did 1/2 mile pick ups (6.2, 6.4, 6.2, 6.5, 6.2, 6.7) for a speedy 5k while jamming to Justin Timberlake, Usher, Ludacris, and Icona Pop.

Salad #2 for dinner including a large bowl of mixed greens, walnuts, tomatoes, grapes, strawberries, beets, red onions, egg, tomatoes, salt & pepper, 1/2 portion blue cheese, and light balsamic vinaigrette.

I also stuck guzzled over 64 ounces of water today and limited my caffeine to one cup of coffee around 3pm when my body and mind were both hitting a jet lag slump.

We’ll see if I can keep this up beginning tomorrow morning when I hope on a plane out west. Goal #1 is to drink at least 3 bottles of water during flight and baby my calf muscles with compression socks.

If you could fly anywhere tomorrow, free of charge, what would be your destination of choice? Mine would be New Zealand or Australia! Both countries have been top of our list for ages but are such a trek and quite expensive!

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Easy Lunch Idea: Ziplock Greek Salad

Happy Monday! Today was such a fun day but quite the whirlwind. It started at the early hour of 4:15 as I met Melissa Z for a quick four mile run along with East River before work. It turns out that we both have to be at work early and we discovered only yesterday that we live just 2 blocks from each other!

It was nice to enjoy the gorgeous views while conquering the darkness with a buddy as we kicked off the week in full gear.

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Then, the day didn’t end until 10pm when I left Revolve, where I took my second class with Jason in just as many days. Melissa and Dori hosted a free ride for readers tonight at 8:45. The music was amazing, Jason’s energy was great, and the spin portion was stronger and harder than last time. I still think the Rip Ride will be my favorite but I do love Jason’s dance parties!

Now it’s almost 10:30 and I’m ready to curl up in bed and fall asleep. But, before I do that, I have to share this week’s salad creation with you guys! I enjoyed last week’s Mexican Ziplock salad so much that I created a new one this week while still staying under my goal budget of $30 for a week’s worth of ingredients.

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This Greek salad packs in tons of flavor and lots of different textures while still being healthy! Grab a Ziplock bag and toss the below ingredients into the bag for a delicious salad that won’t even need dressing thanks to the hummus and taboule!

  • 4 handfuls of arugula
  • 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
  • 3 handfuls of chopped red and orange peppers
  • Any random leftover cooked vegetables you have in your fridge (this week I have sautéed mushrooms)
  • 1 tablespoon hummus
  • 1 tablespoon taboule
  • 1/2 cup grilled/roasted chicken (or your favorite protein)
  • 4 diced sundried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup low fat feta

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Once you toss it around, serve on a plate when you’re ready for lunch!

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Hope you enjoy this week’s creation!

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Easy Lunch Idea: Ziplock Mexican Salad

While I love getting fresh air when I step out to buy lunch on the days I don’t bring my own, it’s an expensive date with fresh air. I had a wake up call when a salad cost $14 last week! Oh New York City how I love you and hate you all at the same time! That hefty receipt urged to start bringing my own lunch again. It can’t be that hard, especially since I’m not traveling this month. Each Sunday I have plenty of time to enjoy Fairway shopping trips and stock the fridge.

This week and last week’s lunch was inspired by Anne but has been slightly altered and renamed a Ziplock Mexican salad.

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So, next time you’re looking for an easy lunch option that is portable and flavorful, just grab a gallon Ziplock and stuff it full with the below delicious ingredients! I was able to buy a week’s worth of ingredients for just $23, which averages $4.25 per day!

  • 4 handfuls of baby spinach
  • 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
  • 3 handfuls of chopped red and orange peppers
  • Any random leftover cooked vegetables you have in your fridge (this week I have sautéed mushrooms)
  • 1 handful chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup brown rice, seasoned with salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and chili powder
  • 1/2 cup of rinsed, drained black beans
  • 1/4 cup shredded extra sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 avocado, chopped
  • 1/4 cup mango salsa

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The Ziplock salad not be pretty but it’s delicious and filling! I love pairing my salads with some crunch so often pack a serving of baked chips or crackers with an apple. This keeps me full until my afternoon snack of yogurt, cottage cheese, or grapefruit and almonds.

What’s your favorite easy lunch option?

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