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Guinea Pig Hikes Great Smoky

posted on November 30th, 2008 ·


My friend and I went on a two-day hiking trip to Great Smoky Mountains, NC, over the Thanksgiving break. We hiked 35 miles and climbed approximately 4000 feet in 17 hours. The experience was extraordinary and amazing. I will be posting more pictures with comments in the next few days. Stay tuned…

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Going Away…

posted on November 25th, 2008 ·

I am going hiking with a friend this Thanksgiving. We will be hiking approximately 26 miles in two and half days. Hiking burns a lot of calories, and in order to replenish ourselves, I made dried goods for me and my friend to bring on the trip.

Granola bars…I have finally made granola into bars without oats falling apart.

Butternut squash cupcakes, for Thanksgiving celebration in the mountain.

Homemade cocoa mix…to keep us warm when we camp out.

A loaf of Anadama Bread, a holiday tradition.

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Guinea Pig Says…Pig Out!

posted on November 25th, 2008 ·


I have told myself many times not to pig out and stay away from the sweets in Thanksgiving dinner parties…but guess what? It has never happened and I haven’t regretted eating big meals. If you could control your appetite, which could be a nice challenge, then go right ahead, say no to pumpkin pies, turkey with succulent gravy, cranberry sauce, green bean casseroles…etc.

I am tired of reading “eating small portion of this and that” or “skip the dessert if you choose to drink alcoholic beverages”. Thanksgiving happens once a year, and I treat every Thanksgiving meal as the last meal with my family and friends. I do not overeat, but I eat until I am full.

Here’s how I approach every Thanksgiving meal:

  1. Eat the traditional food. Don’t skip the gravy and sauce…they are passed down to us through many generations. Thanksgiving foods have historic values…and they are wholesome.
  2. Eat every item on the table. People often cook their “top secret dish” during holiday season; this is one of the rare opportunities to have all the best food simultaneously.
  3. Don’t waste any food. If you happen to have taken too much food from the table…suck it up and eat it all, or politely ask for a container to bring home the leftover. We celebrate Thanksgiving for working hard to make ends meet, and wasting food is totally unacceptable.
  4. Don’t count the calories…you are likely to underestimate the amount of calories consumed. You have worked hard to stay in shape. Holiday season is the time of the year to reward yourself. Eat and be merry!
  5. Share cooking tips with as many people as you can and learn new tricks. You will be on your way to be a better cook!

Follow my 5 principles of healthy living during holiday season, and you won’t regret any extra calories that you put on your body.

Cheers, happy Thanksgiving!

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Guinea Pig’s Water Workout #38

posted on November 24th, 2008 ·

Warm up:

  • 400 freestyle
  • 6 x 100, alternate between pull buoy and kicks
  • 4 x 25 build ups*

Main sets:

  • 4 x 25 sprints, 10-second break
  • Dry land exercises: 20 body weight squats and 20 pus-ups
  • 6 x 50 sprints, under 55 seconds
  • 1 x 100, 50 1-arm swim and 50 medium speed swim
  • 3 x 100, under 2 minutes
  • 3 x 100, under 1 minute 55 seconds
  • 1 x 100 kicks
  • 2 x 50 breast stroke, under 1 minute 10 seconds
  • 2 x 50 breast stroke, under 1 minute
  • 1 x 300 pull buoy
  • 10 freestyle turns
  • 5 breast stroke turns

Total distance (in meters): 2,800

*Build up sets start with medium speed, then speed up to full speed after half way through one lap.

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Breakfast Turned Dessert

posted on November 23rd, 2008 ·


Pancakes are great for dessert; they are fluffy and moist, and have a hint of vanilla (if you have added vanilla extract into pancake batter). I chose to make “Banana Caramel Pancakes with Ice Cream” by using leftover pancakes from breakfast.

When working with caramel, be careful. Caramel boils at higher temperature than water.


  • 3 pancakes
  • 1/2 banana, thinly sliced into oval shape
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup rum (optional)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 scoop of ice cream, more if desired


  1. Set heat on high, pour sugar into a skillet and let the sugar melt. Do not stir.
  2. Once the sugar turns clear and sticky, put butter into the pan and swirl it carefully in order to melt the butter (or you can stir the mixture gently with a wooden spoon). The syrup will begin to bubble.
  3. Once butter is completely melted , add the banana slices. Don’t crowd the pan.
  4. Let the banana cook for 1 to 2 minutes, keep swirling the pan or use a spoon to glaze the banana. (Optional step: once the banana slices turn darker, pour rum into the pan and let the alcohol cook out. Be careful, the pan can catch on fire because of the rum. But don’t panic, the alcohol will evaporate and fire will cease momentarily.)
  5. After caramel thickens more and the bananas are cooked until brown, add water into the pan to thin out the caramel. Scoop out the bananas with a spoon and place them on pancakes. Top the bananas and pancakes with a scoop of ice cream. Drizzle the dessert with more caramel and serve immediately.

What would you do with your leftover pancakes?

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Fantastic Scrambled Eggs

posted on November 23rd, 2008 ·


Of all the ways that eggs can be cooked, sunny-side up, scrambled, over-easy, over-hard, and etc, I like making scrambled eggs the most.

Making the perfect scrambled eggs needs the cook’s undivided attention; if the eggs are left on the heat for as little as 10 seconds more, they can be overcooked. Also…always season the eggs toward the end of cooking. Putting salt on uncooked eggs will break down the fats, and your scrambled eggs will not be creamy and soft. Sounds a little too complicated for making this fantastic breakfast food? Don’t worry, Sweaty Guinea Pig, after many failed attempts, has gained some experiences and is here to help you make the best scrambled eggs.


  • 2~3 eggs, cooking 1 scrambled egg is not worth of your time
  • 1/2 ~ 1 tablespoon of softened butter
  • 1 pinch of salt for the END
  • 1 teaspoon of creme fraiche or sour cream


  1. Heat a medium sauce pan on medium heat for 10 to 15 seconds, then take it off the heat.
  2. Crack eggs into the pan and put the butter in as well.
  3. Put the pan back on the stove and start stirring eggs and butter with a spatula, like how you’d cook your risotto.
  4. When you see a little bit of coagulation in the pan, take it off the heat and keep stirring rhythmically.
  5. After 10 to 15 seconds, put the pan back on the heat and stir.
  6. Repeat the 4th and 5th steps repeatedly until you see big and creamy chunks of eggs form, then turn off the stove.
  7. Season the eggs with 1 pinch of salt and pepper and stir the eggs for 15 seconds more until they are completely in creamy chunks. Make sure the pan is off the stove.
  8. Scoop a teaspoon of creme fraiche or sour cream onto the eggs and stir it in. The cream will cool down the eggs and make them richer and creamier…tastier overall. (If you choose not to add cream, scoop out the scrambled eggs immediately; otherwise they will be overcooked by residual heat.)
  9. Serve the fantastic scrambled eggs on your favorite breakfast bread or cake!


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Endurance: 11/21/2008

posted on November 21st, 2008 ·

Protocol: 5 x 15 for every superset
Goal: working towards better flip turns and greater stroke efficiency in the pool

Warm up:

  • 1 x 15 hip rotations
  • 1 x 15 glute march
  • 1 x 15 inverted hamstring

Main sets:

Superset #1:

  • incline bench, 95 lbs.
  • squat, 115 lbs.
  • upright rows, 55 lbs.
  • box jumps

Superset #2:

  •  push press: 55lbs.
  • jump squat: 55 lbs.
  • swimmers on a stability ball: 2.5 lbs. plate in each hand
  • parachute jumps
  • 3 (3×20) stretch core swimmers

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Guinea Pig Eats Seriously

posted on November 21st, 2008 ·


I was fortunate to be featured on Serious Eats - New York on Monday. Serious Eats is an online food community where bloggers share their food enthusiasm with public. Serious Eats brings you the latest news on food and drinks. Last but not least, Serious Eats also updates you on food related events that take place in your neighborhood. Go on, start “eating seriously”!

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Run and Refuel

posted on November 20th, 2008 ·


Recent research has proved that a person only has enough muscular glycogen, preferred energy source for muscular work, for 20 miles of running. Therefore, it is imperative that a marathon runner refuels him or herself accordingly throughout the race.

When running long distance, a general refueling guideline says to refuel after every mile ( you will have to know your pace in order to refuel yourself properly) for 7 to 8 intervals.

For instance, if a runner runs 7 miles per minute, she would have to refuel herself every 7 minutes for 3 to 4 times consecutively. After each interval, skip refueling for 1 mile (or 7 minutes), then get back to the routine. This general principle is provided by National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Good luck, see you at the finish line!

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Guinea Pig’s Water Workout #37

posted on November 20th, 2008 ·

Warm up:

  • 400 freestyle
  • 3 x 100, 50 kicks on the side & 50 swim w/ fins
  • 3 x 100 dolphin kicks, 50 on the stomach & 50 on the back w/ fins
  • 8 x 25, sprint the last 10 meters

Main sets:

  • 6 x 50 sprints, under 55 seconds
  • Dry land exercises: 20 body weight squats and push-ups
  • 200 flutter kicks
  • 4 x 100 sprints, under 2 minutes
  • 10 “out of water push-ups”
  • 200 flutter kicks
  • 4 x 100 sprints, 50 breast stroke followed by 50 freestyle, under 2 minutes and 10 seconds
  • 300 pull buoy

Total distance (in meters): 3,000

* “out of water push-ups” are like pushing yourself out of water vertically. Do ten, and you will feel the burn on your triceps and shoulders.

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