A Different Kind of Exhaustion

My days at home in June were filled with lots of exercise, and I’d usually come home feeling tired, but a satisfied, happy kind of tired. It might be due to my lingering sickness, which has definitely been impacting my energy levels (especially on my abysmal run), but for the past 24 hours, I have felt completely exhausted. I have a few theories for this exhaustion:

  • It is hotter, and more humid in Philadelphia
  • I was sick
  • I am still dehydrated

In the past day, I think I have walked and ran all of Philadelphia about 2.5 times. You know that depleted feeling in your muscles that you get after you’ve been walking all day at Disneyland? Well that’s how I’ve been feeling for the past day, minus all of the fun rides. I was, however able to get my bearings around the city. Furthermore, I was able to sit and enjoy the sunset on Franklin Boulevard. Image 10 Monday This morning I was up bright and early for a couple of meetings, and had a tough time shaking the exhausted feeling. After a breakfast of chocolate peanut butter banana protein oats, I felt a lot better! Image 11I still haven’t regained my full appetite, so I wasn’t able to finish all of it, which was a pretty weird feeling for me. Even weirder, was that I wasn’t feeling the peanut butter! It almost grossed me out a bit. This little aversion to my beloved PB had better go away soon, or I will be very, very sad. After my meetings, I played some somewhat tired, pathetic, and very sweaty squash. Wasn’t the best, but hey, at least I got out there. Now I’ve regained some energy, so I’m going to try and do some weights! This workout could last 15 minutes, it could last 45. Absolutely no expectations 🙂

Will Run For Water

This morning I woke up feeling tons better than yesterday. I was ecstatic to actually feel hungry for the first time in more than 24 hours, so I decided to make myself some breakfast before heading out for an exploration run!

I fixed myself PB+J oatmeal, with blueberries and a spoonful of Anita’s breakfast boost.



An American- Patriotic themed breakfast!

IMG_2982My exploration run took me all around the Penn campus, all the way to the Art Museum, the Philadelphia Zoo, and finally downtown!

IMG_2984To be honest, I really wasn’t feeling great. Turns out your body gets extremely dehydrated after being on a plane, and being sick. Nevertheless, I was determined to get out and moving to not only enjoy the great weather, but to explore Philly!

Philadelphia Art Museum

I can’t remember the last time I was so thirsty during a run. I took several walking breaks, and two much-needed water breaks. One of my water breaks took me to the Art Museum, where I clearly looked desperate and disheveled enough to coerce the security staff into letting me through without paying for admission for a sip of water.

View from the top of the steps of the Art Museum

And yes, I ran up the steps to the Museum. Felt just like Rocky Balboa! Minus the huge crowd following me…

My run finished up at Starbucks (this seems to be turning into a dangerous habit!) for endless glasses of water, and an iced Passion Tea.

IMG_2989After checking out Rittenhouse square and Barnes and Noble, I headed back to grab some food.

Pit stop- Fro Yo!!! Who says you can’t have some dessert before your main meal?

IMG_2991The rest of my meal was much more nutritious, and incorporated fresh veggies!

Image 6I topped a bed of romaine lettuce with roasted chicken, feta cheese, yellow pepper, cherry tomatoes, pasta salad, and French vinaigrette.

Image 7I’ve since been continuously drinking water (I think I’ve had about 8 glasses today already), and am still feeling thirsty. I think this rehydration may take a while :(.








4th of July in Philadelphia

Well, I survived my first 4th of July in America!

After unpacking a little, my morning started off with a short run- to get food! My friend, Yan Xin and I ran to the restaurant, Marathon, to get brunch. (Oh, the irony! haha)


I ordered the smoked salmon scramble.

Image 1Afterwards we enjoyed a leisurely walk back, passing through Rittenhouse square!

Image 2


After a quick shower and change of clothes, a few friends and I headed out to watch the Brazil vs Colombia world cup game.

They had tons of great food: ribs, steak, appetizer platters (grapes, chips, crackers, cherries), garlic bread, and a whole other table filled with dessert!

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The spread on the dessert table

You see those little babies in the bottom right hand corner?

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Homemade blondies. Although all the food was fabulous, these were definitely my favourite.

Our night finished up downtown Philadelphia, where we checked out the free concert at the Benjamin Franklin parkway. It was packed, but still a ton of fun!


Today I woke up feeling completely terrible. I think I picked up a bug on the plane, or ate something that didn’t agree with me. Thankfully I’m feeling a lot better now, but thanks to my lack of appetite, I don’t have any interesting eats to share with you from today. (I think you all know what saltine crackers look like).

Off to bed to try and kick this bug!


Last Day in Victoria + Arrival in Philadelphia!

After 12+ hours in transit, I arrived in Philadelphia! Took waaaaay to long to get here, but I made it!

But, since yesterday was not spent sitting on a plane, let’s recap that first:

For my final dinner at home, we had baked salmon and a salad on the side.

My plate (x3)


I also had some cashew date butter as an appetizer, and some cherries for dessert!

I then headed off to Gowlland Tod Provincial park to meet up with Lindsay for a little sunset hike!


Last time seeing the West Coast sunset, and it didn’t disappoint.




In the car ride to the airport, I had some chocolate cheesecake pudding for breakfast. I swear that breakfast will never get old.

Once I made it to Vancouver, I got myself a grande Americano with one pump of sugar free vanilla syrup.



It made me so jittery, I proceeded to talk at the woman sitting next to me on the plane for about 20 minutes straight, until I passed out completely for most of the flight.

When I woke up, I could feel hunger starting to set in, and was thankful for the bag of nuts I had packed at the last minute that morning!



During my lovely prolonged stay in the Chicago airport, I had a Southwest Chicken salad. It was okay, but nothing spectacular. Pretty much what you’d expect from airport “take on the fly” food.

IMG_2929 I also got a cup of strawberry Chobani greek yogurt, and topped it with some of Anita’s breakfast blend, that I got from my grandparent’s house the other day!

IMG_2931The strange point of my meal was when I went to McDonalds and asked for milk.

IMG_2933This is what they gave me. A bottle half the size of my hand, fit for a 4 year old. I guess adults don’t order milk very often.

Anyway, it is technically the 4th of July everywhere in the States now, so Happy Independence day to all you Americans! I will be sure to wear my red and white tomorrow! The blue might “accidentally” slip by the wayside… 😉



Cashew Date Butter

Friends, this morning something very sad happened.

Image 12
Empty PB Jar!!

I finished the peanut butter jar while making my Chocolate Cheesecake Protein pudding for breakfast. And we are now completely not only out of peanut butter, but nut butter in general! This does not go over well in our house.

Since I was all comfy in my PJ’s watching Wimbledon (Raonic vs Kyrgios!), I didn’t really feel like making a trip to the grocery store. I decided instead to make use of our food processor and the ingredients we had on hand in the house!

Lately, I’ve been enjoying dates and almonds together as a midmorning/afternoon snack. I usually follow a 4 almond : 1 date ratio, and used this as a rough guideline for my cashew date butter.

This recipe is so easy, and delicious! You only need two ingredients:

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Image 8


…and dates!

And don’t forget your food processor!

First, blend the cashews together by themselves in the food processor. Some of the butter will stick to the bottom, so you’ll need to scrape it off every 15 seconds or so. It’ll look like this:

Image 9It’s funny, cashew butter kind of goes through 3 phases, once the “grinding” process starts:

  1. ground cashews (pieces of cashews)
  2. clumpy cashews

The “clumpy cashew” stage seems to last for a while, and then boom! All of a sudden it turns into smooth, creamy, cashew butter.

Image 10Now, if this doesn’t look delicious enough, let’s add a little more sweetness.

Blend together dates and cashew butter until it looks like this:

Image 11This mixture will be a little thicker, and not as smooth as the pure cashew butter, so if you want to thin it out, you could add some coconut oil.

Image 13

This recipe takes maximum 10 minutes in total to make, which is probably less time than it takes you to drive to your closest grocery store!

Image 38
Don’t things always look better in mason jars?

This cashew date butter is so versatile. It can be used as a topping on crackers, in oatmeal, or even just by itself!

Image 36
Wasa crackers + Cashew date butter

I also realized today that nut butter might be the adult version of Play-dough…

Image 37
Who says you can’t play with your food?!

I also think that this butter would be great as a base or a “glue” for a homemade granola/energy bar. I’ll be sure to let you know what I come up with for that one 🙂

Cashew Date Butter

Ingredients and Materials:

  • 12 Medjool dates, chopped (about 1/3 cup packed)
  • 1 cup cashews, unsalted
  • Food processor
  • Optional: 1-2 Tbsp coconut oil (to thin out if desired)


  1. Blend cashews on high until paste starts to form.
  2. Stop food processor and power it off. Scrape off bottom with a fork or spoon.
  3. Resume blending, pausing every 15 seconds or so to scrape the bottom. Repeat 4 or so times.
  4. Continue #3 until smooth cashew butter starts to form.
  5. Stop food processor and add dates.
  6. Blend dates and cashew butter together, pausing occasionally to scrape bottom and sides.
  7. Optional step: add coconut oil to thin out mixture to desired consistency.
  8. Enjoy!

I have been snacking on this by itself non-stop this morning. Too good!