Monthly Archives: September 2015

One Last Note

Good morning, sunshine :) I began writing this post several times. I’ve kept it a draft for a while, fine-tuning and nit-picking. But here it is:

For a little over three years now, I’ve written hundreds of blog posts with thousands of pictures. It’s become a scrapbook for me, documenting my own journey through college and finding balance with a healthy lifestyle. I’m very proud of some of the work I’ve produced (and trust me, I cringe at some of my work too…) Today, though, I’m closing my chapter on Strong Like My Coffee. Today marks the end of my blogging career while I pursue my other passions :)

Southport Beach NC Swings Safe Haven

I still love writing. I still love taking pictures. I still love health and fitness, running, weight lifting, and hiking. I love learning about the body and exercise science, and finding new challenges. I love creating healthy beautiful recipes, I love learning about nutrition and the healthiest ways to fuel our bodies. I just don’t necessarily feel the need the share it all so publically. My heart hasn’t really been into blogging for some time.

Writing new posts turned into a “chore” when it meant giving up a couple precious hours of “free time” I had each week. My blog’s focus is on health and fitness, so any splurge on ice cream or Cheez-its left me feeling guilty of being a hypocrite.

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My About Me page needed a total re-haul, updating the fact that I am no longer 21, a college student, a sports marketing intern or a cross country athlete. The entire “theme” of Strong Like My Coffee has circulated around Healthy College Girl….I’m still healthy and I’m still a girl but 33% of that equation is no longer accurate. I’m not a food blogger, a fitness blogger or a lifestyle blogger. I lost my niche. And I had no interest in finding a new one. As I realized the need to update my “About” page and my overall theme, I knew that I was actually ready to be done.

After opening my personal fitness journey up to the world wide web, I’m gaining an appreciation for privacy. For keeping my journey my own. So for now, I’m focusing on training for November’s marathon, studying for my personal training certification, continuing my marketing career, and figuring out independency as a 22-year old who’s been too spoiled for her own good :)


When I started this “project, ” blogging was a hobby to distract myself during my recovery from surgery. I think it served its purpose. I found new passions in creating healthy recipes, trying new forms of workouts, learning about fitness trends and following some pretty cool other bloggers. I’m ready for my next projects/distractions, whatever they may be.

Thank you for reading and supporting Strong Like My Coffee for these past three years! I hope you have a happy, healthy and wonderful start to your new week :)

Love, Kenzie

Seventeen Miles and Some Southern Cookin’ (Happy Birthday, Daddy!)

Hope you’re feeling fresh this Monday morning for a brand new week :) If not, well…there’s always coffee.

Health's Kitchen Brunch and Coffee |

My dad’s birthday fell on Sunday….traditional long run day for marathon training. He’s been my long run buddy, tackling the miles right along side me on his bike.  I offered to switch this week’s 17-miler to Saturday, or let him sleep in and head out by myself. But he insisted that he didn’t mind starting off his special day just like every Sunday for the past month. He’s a special kind of weird. :)

When he turned 50, he and I did a half-century bike ride together…50 miles to the beach. Last year, my “present” to him was hiking the Cactus to Clouds trail near palm springs. My little not-so-subtle reminder that age is just a number and being active is the best counter to aging. Plus I just like spending time outside with him. ANYWAYS, back to the run…

Of course it also happened to be 104 degrees on Sunday (Hey, Happy First Day of Autumn!). You can sleep in or you can escape the heat, you cannot have both. When I woke up to start the coffee pot, it was still dark out. By 7am, we were cruising around the neighborhood as I tried to piece together seventeen miles that were mostly shady, paved, and did not include running multiple loops.

Marathon Training Long Run 17 miler |

I made it through the run with three water stops and a tangerine gu, replaying my most adrenaline-inducing playlist. Two hours later, I had logged my longest run since 2014’s marathon. 17 miles, 2 hours and 4 minutes, 7:18 average mile pace. Complete success to me, considering I felt like I had plenty left in the tank as I cooled down and stretched. But all the marathon research I’ve done has been very clear about one thing: be patient, because you do not want to “peak” to early or fatigue yourself before the actual race. So I crossed that major task off my to-do list and re-focused my energy on new birthday recipes!

Typically my dad likes Mexican food on his birthday but this year’s request came way out of left field: homemade chicken & waffles, with peach cobbler a la mode. A southern meal that is pretty far from anything I’ve ever made before. I’ll take the opportunity for practice getting ready for southern living in the Carolina’s!

Homemade Chicken and Waffles for Dinner

The meal is slightly healthified with some modifications. Not to be confused with “healthy.” There is nothing healthy about this meal, just keeping it real. Even future personal trainers break the clean-eating diet for special occasions :)

We oven-baked the chicken, made whole wheat waffles, and kept portions in check with a green salad. Success, y’all!

Homemade Chicken and Waffles

And no,  I didn’t make my dad complete a Spartan race, an Ironman, or anything crazy for his birthday. Nope, we actually kept it low-key with a guilt-free relaxing afternoon, iced coffees, Mad Men episodes, football, NASCAR (okay, I totally Pinterest-ed during that part) and some presents.

We LOVED our cinnamon-y peach cobbler, and I promise there were candles but it was a little difficult to make the crumbly peachy mixture appetizing in a photograph. You can take my word for it ;)

Birthday Peach Cobbler

This week I’m starting serious studying for the NASM exam, mixing in some speed and tempo workouts for the marathon training and getting back into clean-eating mode. See you here again soon! :)

#TBT 15: Mini Football Snacks

Today, there can only be one possible candidate for today’s #ThrowbackThursday post…

MINI FOOTBALL SNACKIES (For those of you who don’t have the SportsCenter App clogging up your phone, tonight is the start of this season’s Thursday Night Football).  :)

Now it’s officially starting to feel like Fall is coming. Last night I had dinner at Panera and we sat outside on the patio. We actually had to call it a night early because the air was so chilly. A far cry from last week when we were still sweating outside at 8pm. By the way, if you’re a Panera fan (or Paradise Bakery for Arizonians!) I highly recommend the new Autumn salad: Arugala with apple slaw, ancient grains (including Freekeh!), pumpkin seeds, grapes and apple cider vinegrette. There was supposed to be chicken but the waitress forgot it and I wasn’t feeling particularly carnivorous anyways. Okay tangent over, I leave you with this blast-from-the-past:

Mini Football Snackies

Originially Posted September 15, 2014

Which football games did you watch this weekend? Even the unsporty-est of the people can find something they enjoy about football season. You get to plan team-colored outfits, prepare fan-friendly appetizers, maybe some drinks or cocktails, tailgate parties, house parties, sports bar parties, trash-talking the opposing team. I don’t want to hear about Ray Rice anymore, let’s talk about the actual players and games! Or food. That’s cool too.

Mini Football Pretzel Snackies from

My weekend was spent working at our home-opener football game. (I’m a sports marketing intern for our athletics department). After working 2.5 hours at a volleyball tournament, I spent 7 hours on the football field. Our boys stepped out in brand new uniform designs and we kicked off brand new game-day traditions. I’m sad to report that I didn’t have any glamorous or “wow” jobs during the game. Typical intern grunt work. But the boys kept me entertained with touchdown after touchdown, killing the opposing team. Brought home a W and that’s all a fan can ask for, right?!

Sports marketing interns on game day ( moving on….It’s not really a secret that I like to make things pretty. Why have pretzels when you can turn them into adorable football pretzels? For some reason, I will use any excuse to make DIY crafts and recipes that have a theme. Just appease me.

Peanut-butter filled pretzels + chocolate = BOOM. 2 ingredient recipe. (Not to mention the best flavor combo EVER.)Mini pretzel football ingredients (

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Melt your milk/dark chocolate, and dunk the tops of the pretzels into it.
  • Set them, pretzel-side down onto the paper-lined baking sheet.
  • Place the sheet into the freezer for ten minutes while you melt your white chocolate
  • If you don’t have a piping tool that is thin enough to outline the laces onto the pretzels, you can just use a ziplock bag. Push a toothpick through the corner to create a tiny whole, and fill the bag with your melted white chocolate.

Making mini football pretzels (

  • Pipe the laces onto the pretzels and place them back into the freezer. Store in the freezer until you’re ready to place in a dish for your party, because if you leave them out they will be G-O-N-E. ;)Mini Football Snackies Recipe (

They were a hit! And yes, they do taste better than regular chocolate peanut butter pretzels because they are made with love. Football love.

That’s just the start of weekend football festivities, we have a long season to go. More snacks and recipes to come!

Mini Football Pretzels Tailgate Party Snacks (


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