• Some Random Things for Friday

    September 6, 2013

    Good morning! Happy Friday!

    I’m all over the place this morning and had a bunch of random things that I wanted to blog about, so here they are all in one post. Enjoy! Ha!

    I really want to try Trader Joe’s Cold Brew Coffee.

    The other day, a reader sent me an email letting me know about Trader Joe’s Cold Brew Coffee along with the photo below, and now I want to take a special trip to TJ’s to see what it’s all about. Has anyone tried it yet? Amazing? Do I need to get in my car RIGHT NOW and drive straight to Trader Joe’s?

    photo (1)

    I had my first cupping experience.

    I went to Allure Spa for a massage yesterday afternoon, and my therapist recommended cupping to me. Cupping is a form of ancient Chinese medicine that uses suction cups to increase blood flow to muscles and tissue in order to promote healing. The sucking from the cups draws up stagnant, non-circulating blood to the surface of the skin, so healthy circulation with oxygen, nutrients, and other good stuff can be restored to the area for faster recovery. I have scoliosis, sit at a computer all day long, and abuse my body (long distance running + CrossFit) on a regular basis, so my back is always super tight and stiff, so cupping sounded like exactly what I needed.

    cupping

    My appointment included a mix of regular massage, massage cupping, where the therapist moves large, flexible cups over the body, and straight up cupping, where the therapist leaves the cups on your skin for a few minutes while they work their magic.

    You’ve probably seen celebrities with “cup kisses” on their backs, right? Those are from cupping and supposedly the color of the marks depends on the level of blood stagnation and muscle dysfunction in the area. Darker the color = more stagnation and dysfunction. My therapist said the cups on my back turned really dark (almost black), but, thankfully, they didn’t leave any marks.

    gwyneth-paltrow-cupping
    [source]

    I really liked my first experience with cupping. It did’t hurt and it wasn’t necessarily a relaxing massage, but it definitely reduced tension and loosened up my back, neck, and shoulders, so it was worth it. I immediately felt lighter and like I had a better range of motion in my neck and shoulders, which is a feeling I haven’t experienced in months years. I will definitely get another cupping massage at Allure.

    I’ve been eating A LOT of cheese lately.

    You guys know how much I love cheese, right? Well, I’m even more in love with it lately. Here are just a couple of reasons why:

    The nice people from Kitchen Table Bakers recently sent me some of their All Parmesan Gourmet Cheese Crisps to try, and Mal and I plowed through them. They sent us four flavors—Aged Parmesan, Rosemary, Jalapeno, and Everything—and we could not get enough of them. We devoured four packages in two days—they’re that good! I actually just placed an order to try some of their other flavors and bought some for my cheese-obsessed family because I know they’ll be just as crazy about them.

    cheese_crisps

    I’ve also been mixing wedges of Laughing Cow cheese in just about everything lately—spaghetti squash, steamed spinach, mashed sweet potatoes, pancake batter, scrambled eggs… you name it! I <3 cheese.

    spaghetti squash with laughing cow lunch

    I’m still sore from Wednesday’s workout.

    Those heavy Thrusters seriously smoked my quads. Holy DOMS! I am taking another rest day today, so maybe my long run will happen tomorrow?

    post-WOD

    My walk with Murphy this morning took forever.

    Ever since I read Inside of a Dog, I typically let Murphy take his sweet time and sniff as long as he wants. Sometimes, though, this extends our walks by a good 10-15 minutes. (Someone definitely peed on that bush before Murphy visited it this morning.)

    photo (3)

    I want to make (and eat, obviously) Monster Cookie Dough Dip so bad.

    I saw this recipe on Pinterest the other day, and I’m dying to make it. Doesn’t it look amazing? Give me a spoon!

    monster cookie dough

    Questions of the Day

    Have you tried cold brew coffee? Any favorites?

    What do you think of cupping? Would you ever try it?

    Do you eat raw cookie dough?

    My replies:

    • Yes! I’m a big fan of Chameleon Cold Brew!
    • It was awesome! I will definitely do it again.
    • Yes, any chance I get! I love cookie dough!

    P.S. Be sure to enter my giveaway to win a pound of white chocolate chip coffee from Marylou’s! I’ll pick a winner on Monday!

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    { 97 comments… read them below or add one }

    Marissa@ohhhsolovely September 6, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    my goodness, that monster cookie dough dip looks like a must try! i could totally do some damage with that today after a long week!

    Reply

    Alison @ Daily Moves and Grooves September 6, 2013 at 6:00 pm

    Cupping definitely sounds intriguing and I would try it! And I’m not a HUGE fan of chocolate, but I would make a peanut butter cookie dough dip for sure.
    By the way, those parmesan crisps look so good.

    Reply

    Sarah Smith September 6, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    I’ve made the cookie dough dip before and it was AWESOME! There are so many varieties too- sugar cookie dip, chocolate chip, snickerdoodle! YUM!

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    Ella September 6, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    wow, cupping sounds super weird… mainly because of the claim that “stagnant blood” gets moved around. Sounds bogus! Did they point to any science-based evidence backing up that claim? But I’m a believer in the idea that if it makes you feel better, then it works, regardless of scientific support. So whatever makes you feel better!

    Reply

    Amanda Sutherland September 8, 2013 at 10:51 pm

    @Ella: I agree! I’ve never heard of stagnant blood, I’m going to ask my professors tomorrow (I’m in nursing school).

    Reply

    Ellen Renee September 6, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    I have never had purchased cold brew coffee…always make my own….”brewing” some now in fact so I will be prepared for the weekend :o)

    Not sure of the cupping…have never had any type of massage in my life…VERY ticklish…can’t imagine being able to lay there while a stranger touches me! Giggling the entire time…not cute.

    I have never been tempted to eat raw cookie dough…the thought grosses me out…the raw eggs.

    Reply

    sally @ sweat out the small stuff September 6, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Woah! I think I just got weak in the knees…..cookie dough dip??!!! I think that tops the S’mores dip I discovered a few weeks ago. (It’s fabulous and if you ever care to try it here is the link to the recipe: http://www.bakeaholicmama.com/2013/01/smore-crack-dip.html) I used semi-sweet chips rather than milk.
    Back in the 90s I had a boss who used to get cupping massages. I had another “blood stimulation” type procedure done while getting acupuncture for my ankle 2 years ago and it was practically a miracle. Basically he poked and stabbed at the weak tendon making me bleed. Sounds scary but it wasn’t so bad.

    Reply

    Darris September 6, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    I’m really enjoying your blog lately the yummy food, drinks & CHEESE! I wish I lived close to a Trader Joes or maybe it’s good thing that I don’t or I might be there weekly with my list form your blog! Lol Any who.. back to this coffee business I’d love to try the white chocolate chip cookie from Marylou’s. I usually drink either the Hawaiian or Italian roast from Tully’s & add coffeemate vanilla or hazelnut. If I’m feeling crazy I’ll buy a seasonal coffeemate so Marylou’s coffee would be a nice change. :-))

    Reply

    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats September 6, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    Yes to the raw cookie dough! That monster one looks amazing.

    I used to see a chinese herbalist who did massage, cupping and acupuncture. I’d always leave looking bruised and battered but I always felt better a few days later and at the time although it sometimes hurt it still felt good :)

    Love that you let Murph just sniff and enjoy his walk time even if it takes longer.

    Reply

    Sarah L September 6, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    Hi Tina!

    I actually had my first cupping experience today at my massage! I too abuse my back (long work at a factory during the summer + being a student). I found it to be very beneficial. However, my back looks like it was run over by a truck! It’ll go away in a few days and is not painful. I really enjoyed the experience, even if I can’t wear a tank top for a couple of days! :)

    Reply

    claire farren September 6, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    Oh yum! I am going to have to go back th TJs tomorrow and get some of that! I just moved and Tjs just opened 4 blocks away! I am SOOOO Excited! Their greek yogurt is my favorite! I can’t wait to try this iced coffee! It will cut back on my starbucks habit!

    Reply

    Debbie (Accidently Delish) September 6, 2013 at 9:29 pm

    since im obsessed with balanced bites i have been dying to try chameleon brew! but on that note i heard the trader joes version was actually gross. but i haven’t personally tried it. i’m saving myself for chameleon brew. haha.

    Reply

    She Rocks Fitness September 6, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    I hope you don’t think this is weird, but I was food shopping the other day and saw Laughing Cow and thought of you. I need to pick up more goods this weekend and definitely going to pick some up this time around. I need to start adding it to things too. I’ve been cheese free for a few weeks for some random reason. LOL!

    Reply

    Annie@herightfit.com September 6, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Oh my goodness. That cookie dough looks amazeballs.

    Reply

    Dale September 7, 2013 at 12:10 am

    Some whole foods now carry Stumptown Cold Brew. It’s the absolute best cold brew I’ve ever had. Try it if it has made its way east!

    Reply

    Kelly September 7, 2013 at 8:54 am

    I love deep tissue massages,they hurt so much but feel awesome! The MaryLou’s Harvest Spice flavor of coffee would be divine. I think it is time to make pumpkin chocolate chip cookies.

    Reply

    Simi September 7, 2013 at 9:30 am

    I love TJ’s cold-brew!! I used it this morning to make this coffee recipe: http://themicroharvest.com/recipes/good-morning-perfect-cup-of-morning-joe/

    Reply

    Tina September 7, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Thank you!! :)

    Reply

    Eating 4 Balance September 7, 2013 at 9:45 am

    That’s incredibly interesting about the cupping. I was just thinking the other day about whether you were still doing acupuncture and how that was working for you?

    Cookie dough is literally my favorite food. I’ve seen that pin on pinterest and although I can’t eat it because of allergies, I repin every single cookie dough picture. Got to share the love :)

    Reply

    Tina September 7, 2013 at 11:27 am

    I had 5 acupuncture appointments and liked them, but wasn’t seeing any improvements with my UC symptoms. I pretty much got stuck with needles and slept, so I stopped going. I’m glad I tried it though!

    Reply

    Kristen C September 7, 2013 at 9:55 am

    I love cold brews! I got the TJs a few weeks ago and it is great! I usually buy it at The Fresh Market, but it comes refrigerated and has a shorter life span, so the TJs is great because you can stock up without worry! It is perfect to add 2 shots to my morning shakeology shake so that I can somewhat condense my early morning liquid consumption so I’m not peeing literally all morning :)

    Reply

    Erin Huiatt September 7, 2013 at 10:14 am

    I am a HUGE coffee drinker! Please share what you think of the Trader Joes cold brew coffee!

    Reply

    Krista September 7, 2013 at 10:24 am

    I love flavored coffee! But especially coconut coffee!

    Reply

    Jolynn @ Lift Pray Love September 7, 2013 at 10:27 am

    1. Never tried it.
    2. I’ve heard of it but I don’t think anywhere around me offers it. I’d have to travel about an hour to have it done. Downfall of country living.
    3. Only peanut butter.

    Reply

    Michelle @ 3cheaprunners September 7, 2013 at 10:45 am

    Is it bad to admit that I almost prefer raw cookie dough to the finished product?!?

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    Samantha September 7, 2013 at 11:15 am

    TJs cold brew coffee is pretty good mixed with almond milk. Doesn’t beat fresh brewed from a Toddy though!

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    sarah @makingitmyhome.blogspot.com September 7, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    i love raw cookie dough. i used to buy it in the packages and eat it raw while i was in college. i wont let myself buy it anymore!

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    Alex @ Kenzie Life September 7, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    My cousin is a massage therapist and did cupping on me once. I don’t really remember it but it was fun I guess! I want to try cold brew coffee and I can’t wait until they open our first TJs in Colorado later this year! I’ve been waiting for that moment for two years now! And I’ve eaten way too much raw cookie dough. It’s a great food :) (on occasion of course!)

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    Gina Guthrie September 7, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    I love vanilla flavored coffee.

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    Alyssa September 7, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    OMG that dip looks & sounds amazing!! I could never make it though because I’d for sure eat the entire thing haha! I love raw cookie dough. I used to buy the Toll House cookie dough & eat half raw & bake the other half. It’s like the best of both worlds lol.

    Cupping sounds interesting. My neck & shoulders hold a lot of tension, so that sounds like it could actually help me out with that. I’d be kind of freaked out having big black marks on me though lol

    Reply

    Katie @ Talk Less, Say More September 8, 2013 at 9:30 am

    I’ve heard of cupping but I’ve never tried it before. It sounds kind of weird but knowing how I hold tension, it would probably be kind of nice to help break up some of the tension, especially in my upper back! I’ll have to see if there’s a place around here to give it a try.

    Reply

    Carisa September 8, 2013 at 10:09 am

    When I was a coffee drinker (feel better without it) I used the toddy cold brew system. Best coffee ever for iced coffee! http://toddycafe.com/

    Reply

    Karen W. September 8, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Question about scoliosis and Crossfit:
    I have always wanted to do Crossfit, but am concerned about rapid weighted movements and my scoliosis. I have a 40degree curve to the right thoracic and 40degree to the left lumbar. I have spinal rotation, so my left ribcage shifts forward. Is your scoliosis comparable to mine? If so, would you share if you have had any repercussions from the weighted (esp overhead) aspect of Crossfit workouts?

    Reply

    Tina September 8, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    I’m not sure how my scoliosis compares to yours (I’ve never had a doctor give me the exact degree of the curve), so I think a conversation with your doc would be a good starting point. It’s hard to say how CrossFit would impact things since you have a unique situation. Sorry I’m not more help. I actually don’t know a lot about scoliosis, and I don’t want to give you the wrong info.

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    Jen Shaw September 8, 2013 at 11:49 pm

    Yes! Go get the cold brewed coffee ASAP. I love iced coffee and this is delish. Plus, you can flavor it any way you want.

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    Angie Jerde September 9, 2013 at 7:11 am

    Hazelnut is my favorite!

    Reply

    Elizabeth September 9, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Hey there!

    I picked up that Trader Joe’s iced coffee concentrate over the weekend and just had some this morning mixed with some protein powder for an “iced vanilla protein latte” after my morning Body Pump class. It’s pretty tasty! I’m sure iced coffee concentrate is one of those things I could make myself but am just too lazy to try so this is a great way to reward myself after a workout. I really recommend it!

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    Tina September 9, 2013 at 10:03 am

    That sounds wonderful! A friend of mine actually offered to pick up a bottle of it for me from TJs the other day, so I’m going to get it from her tonight. I can’t wait to try it! :)

    Reply

    Elyse September 9, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    Grady’s Coldbrew from Whole Foods is DELISH. I went to high school in Wellesley with the guy who started it out of Brooklyn, NY. So good!!!!

    Reply

    Tina September 9, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    Thanks for the rec! I’ll see if I can find it! :)

    Reply

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