Photography by Salvatore Brancifort
It's seven o'clock on a Thursday night...do you know where your girlfriends are? If you're a runner with the Central Park Track Club, you do. These ladies can count on each other to be at their weekly workout meeting spot--rain or shine, snow or sleet.
When they're not gutting it out in grueling hill runs or speeding around the East River Track, the women of CPTC, a competitive running club based in New York City, like to eat.
Here, three of the members share their favorite recipes for healthful party snacks. Enjoy these treats with your running buddies.
"I always joke with my teammates that I'd run half as many miles if I had to run by myself," says Megan Irene Kretz. When training for the ING New York City Marathon, those miles can total 60 per week. To make the distance speed by, Kretz trains with the club. "Running with friends really makes going that extra mile easier."
When she's not training or working for a Manhattan law firm, Kretz is writing her nutrition blog, "The Runner's Kitchen." In her tiny apartment, Megan experiments with fresh ingredients to concoct healthy yet creative recipes.
The idea behind her "Healthified" Spinach Dip came after enjoying the unhealthy version at a friend's bachelorette party. "I tinkered around in my kitchen to make the recipe healthier yet still delicious," she says. Instead of mayonnaise, Kretz uses Greek yogurt, which is high in protein and low in fat.
This fun appetizer is great for holiday parties or any get-together with your girls.
"Healthified" Spinach DipServes eight
- 1 packet of dry vegetable soup mix (Megan uses Knorr)
- 10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
- 8 oz. water chestnuts, chopped
- 8 oz. light sour cream
- 8 oz. 2 percent fat Greek yogurt
- 8 oz. non fat Greek yogurt
Mix ingredients in a bowl until well combined. Refrigerate for two hours before serving. Enjoy with fresh vegetables, crackers or whole-wheat pita chips.
Nutritional info per serving:
97 calories, 4 g fat, 60 g carbohydrates, 9 g protein, 67 mg sodium
THE NUTRITIONIST'S TAKE
Michelle Traub, RD, says, "This dip provides vitamin A, calcium and vitamin D, nutrients that many women often miss. When enjoyed with fresh vegetables like celery or baby carrots, it also offers filling fiber."