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A fun game to play while you run

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NYC Day 1

When I run through suburbia, back in Texas, I see very few other runners. So it was really exciting to run with a lot of other people in Central Park. The energy in that place is electric. I made up a new running game, called Pass or be Passed.

Basically, the rules are: you get a point for every runner you pass, and you lose a point for every runner who passes you. I passed fourteen runners and was passed by zero… although three of the runners I passed were together, so maybe that should only count as twelve. Eh, it’s my game. I can make up my own rules ;).

boat cake

Post-run breakfast was a Single-Serving Oatmeal Cake.

I made this one Elvis-style, with banana and peanut butter. I also grabbed some fresh honeydew from the breakfast bar downstairs. Our little hotel room is so cool: it has a microwave, fridge, freezer, pots and pans, even a dishwasher! Did they have me in mind when they set it up? I could easily make all my own meals here. But considering NYC is right outside, I’ll probably stick to making oatmeal breakfasts… and taking full advantage of the fridge for storing to-go meals from all the restaurants I want to try!

Josies Restaurant West:

When Jessica finally woke up, we headed over to Josies–a veg-friendly establishment on the upper west side–for lunch.


Choosing between the pumpkin ravioli and the veggie lentil loaf was so tough. In the end, I decided to go for the loaf, which features organic lentils, mushrooms, sweet potato, and tahini, with miso-sautéed bok choy. (Note: the loaf is usually only available for dinner.) Good, good choice! The greens were just your average greens (not that this is a bad thing). But the loaf, itself, was fabulous—flavorful, soft, and chewy without being tough. Love love love.

Peacefood Cafe:

After lunch, we walked a few blocks to a place called Peacefood Cafe, for some chocolate-dipped macaroons. Peacefood Cafe is an awesome vegan restaurant that boasts whole-grain desserts and uses no refined sugars.


We took our chocolate macaroons to-go and ventured into Central Park.


Eventually, we made our way up to Belvedere Castle.

It’s a tiny castle (although not as tiny as my Harry Potter Castles). But it gives you a BIG view of the city. Then we found a quiet spot in the park to devour the incredible macaroons. I’m already thinking of going back to Peacefood—I want to try their coconut cream pie!

Well-fed, we walked all the way back to our hotel, taking advantage of the beautiful NYC day. (I read that it was 106 in Texas. Definitely not sorry I missed that!)


Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. Do what is right for you on the post thing, enjoy your time!!! ….I love seeing things in the city! I miss it! Your game pretty much rocks!! I agree your game = your rules!!! :)

  2. Lenna says:

    Seems like you are having an awesome time in NYC :) Enjoy it, I so would like to go there some day! And I am all for two post in one day, we need to see all those lovely pictures :))

  3. VEGirl says:

    I don’t mind “long” posts at all! And 106 degrees? That’s makes out 91 degree forecast look rather lame, BUT we have the worst humidity blowing in this week! I tried to go on my bike ride as early as I could this morning (but ended up leaving at 8, I got sucked into a book! :D) and my shirt was drenched before I even left the driveway!

    I have heard of peacefood cafe– once I go to NYC on my own terms sometime I really want to visit it!

  4. Jen says:

    Games make everything more fun! Especially car rides. You could play that same game with passing cars! Haha! (Might be a little bit more dangerous, though.) Anyway, I’m super jealous of your NYC trip, and I wish I were there to test out all the incredible vegan hot spots with you! Come to LA next, so I can take you to MY favorite vegan places! :)

  5. I like your pass or be passed game — I always liked seeing those results from races I’ve been in — how many people you passed and how many passed you. Sometimes the results were good, and sometimes not!

    Have a great time in NYC!

  6. I love making up games to play while exercising – they make the time pass SO much faster!

  7. I’m glad you are having such an amazing time!!!! The weather seems like our picked a great week to go to NY!

    I love the pass or be passed game…. I’ll probably do that on my next run!

  8. There is nothing quite like Central Park :) I hope you are having a fantastic time in NYC!

  9. Whoa. NY sounds awesome! Love 2 posts a day! 😀 PS> Nothing wrong with ‘long’. Reading your blog is fun. That’s why we’re here… remember? 😀

  10. Pass or Be Passed sounds like a fun little game to play while running. I remember when I first started running I would count mailboxes to keep my mind off the run. My record was 87 in 3 miles! Haha! 😛

  11. Looks like you’re having a ton of fun already!!!! I have never been to those restaurants or that castle so I am definitely going to have to check those out next time I’m in the city!

  12. I like the sound of your game! I definitely don’t see enough runners to do it though.

    Your hotel room sounds cool – I always want to bring my own food and buy groceries. Have a great time Katie! :)

  13. Sounds like you’re having a blast!
    I’m not sorry I’m missing the Texas heat either. SO not looking forward to that blazing heat when I return home…

  14. Giulia says:

    I too play pass or be passed! I just love the feeling of surpassing other runners (especially if they’re men!)
    I also like to count how many people smile when they see me running with my dog!

    1. I’ll have to try that! Although I always am sad that more people don’t wave back when I wave to them as I’m running by!

  15. ellen says:

    Yum that macaroon looks fantastic!, i read ur psts every day so itl be great to see 2 and to see NYC through you! as ive always wanted to go!, have a great time!xx

  16. I think I could play that game biking on my bike path, sounds like a good motivator. But NYC looks like a blast! Are you there with just a friend and not your family? Those kinds of trips are exciting because your on your own schedule and being independent, especially in such a huge city!

    1. Yup, I’m here with a friend from Texas :).

  17. That looks so fun, I love NYC! I really want to be a runner – maybe if I play your game while I run… though what happens if your points are in the negative at the end? LOL.

    On a side note, I figured out how to get my daughter to eat chia seeds (instead of planning her chia zoo, which we have decided to do whether or not we win the chia seeds giveaway). We put them in our overnight oatmeal! She feels like overnight oatmeal is a science experiment, and we have to “adjust the variables” each night. Chia seeds count for an excellent variable.

    1. yeah, it’s a risky game! :-/

  18. Savannah says:

    Looks Like a great day in NYC! That castle looks so cool! Architecture like That is Really interesting.

    You have to love all the food options in the big apple. :)

  19. I’m sure your productive morning was perfect. It sounds that way to me :) The chocolate maccaroon looks delicious and the post was not even close to too long. I’m looking forward to seeing some of your other New York eats

  20. Ohmigosh, I’ve always wanted to go to NYC! I LOVE the little running game you made up. I wish I could play that here, but this SW Florida “town” is barely a town at all. The only people I ever see on my runs are elderly people taking their morning walks. 😛 Of course, it’s summer now, so I’ve been swimming more than running anways. But I’d love to run in Central Park someday! 😀

  21. VeggieGirl says:

    We NEED to be in NYC at the same time one of these days.

  22. hannah @ Theflexitarianeater says:

    Oh my gosh are you staying on the upper west side?! Because I am too! Yesterday I ate at citrus, which is owned by the same restaurant group as josies, and I think just one or two blocks over! And I’ve been meaning to check out peacefood!

    1. I’m right by times square. But I feel like there are even better places on the upper west side. Take advantage!! 😉

  23. Lisa says:

    ahh, isn’t NYC amazing?? I love it! I give you props for running there too- I cant imagine doing it. just TOOOOO crowded for me- I need to be able to zone out!! :)
    im so checking out peacefood cafe- no refined sugar and whole grains?!? count me in :)

  24. Ughhhhh yum!!! That loaf looks so darn good. I love lentils. And MACAROONS!!!

  25. I totally play that game. whenever someone passes me, I get pretty jacked up to run faster and re-pass them.

    yeeeuup, I’m that girl.

  26. Jen says:

    So glad you’re loving the upper-west Vegan establishments! (It’s my ‘hood, hehe.) Don’t forget to try Blossom, Cafe Viva and The Hummus Place. :)

    1. Cafe Blossom is already penciled in. I’m so excited!!

  27. Amber K says:

    Interesting running game! Around me there’s barely anyone on the road, so that wouldn’t really work. But I guess it would really just make the game more challenging. I’d really have to push it when I finally see someone!

  28. Lucky! I was supposed to go back to NYC this Summer, but a MILLION things came up and I ended up having to cancel my trip! If you don’t mind saying, which hotel are you staying in? If it has a kitchen it sounds like the perfect place to stay at for me!! Have fun and eat lots of yummy food!

    1. Staybridge Suites on 40th and 8th

  29. I’ve been to New York a few times but have never been to Belvedere Castle. I’ll have to look it up and see if it’s in the vicinity of the convention center we’re going to in October.

    Glad you’re having fun!

  30. Susan says:

    I highly recommend heading to Lula’s Sweet Apothecary for some vegan ice cream! The cake batter soft serve is AMAZING!!

  31. You must have been running super fast to pass by all of those people! I’m impressed! And how did you make your oatmeal cake in your hotel room… is there a microwave version that I haven’t seen?? That sounds like a wonderful NY day! And oh I love a good lentil loaf and macaroons enjoyed in Central park just sounds like a dream. Hope you are having fun!!

    1. lol I made it the day b4 in Texas. I haven’t tried making it in the microwave yet, although I *think* other commenters have. I should try it!

  32. Jennifer says:

    Welcome to New York, Katie! I hope that you enjoy your stay in this beautiful city!

  33. Leashieloo says:

    I am so overdo to visit NYC, you make it look so fun. And that castle isn’t too small! It’s the perfect size for me to move in.

  34. Ahhh I’m so jealous!! 😀 Yes if you feel like it, deffo do 2 posts a day! Your NY adventures are too good to miss 😀

  35. Oh this makes me want to visit NYC SO BAD! I love macaroons, those look heavenly :)
    Love your blog and recipes!! Kudos to you for running in Central Park, I hear it’s super hot right now!

  36. Marianne says:

    If you could send some of that sunshine and heat from either NYC or Texas my way, that would be awesome. We have yet to truly get summer – today it is 13 C and cloudy/rainy…much like most of July. It will probably warm up to almost 19C at some point in time, but that ain’t even summer!

    Looks like you’re having a good time there in the Big Apple!

  37. Two posts per day AND you’re on vacation…you go girl!

    I pass by so many other runners on a daily basis that I would be in a constant state of math if I tried to play any counting games while I run. My brain usually just checks out.

    Wow the food looks awesome…that loaf looks soooo good. The sweet potatoes, the bok choy, wow, that would be perfect for me!

    No, what would be perfect are those choc dipped macaroons. Delish looking.

    Have fun while you’re there and don’t worry about blogging!! :)

  38. I’ve still never been to NYC. It’s on the list though. I love waking up early in a new town and venturing out before everyone else wakes up.

  39. Lexi says:

    Lovelovelove NYC! Long posts (and two posts a day) sound great, if it means drooling over more delicious food pictures. Nothing wrong with that! 😉

  40. love that running game! def gonna try it once i can get out of this injury and back to running!!

  41. Elise says:

    Is that castle the one in enchanted? *cough* not that I watched that film obviously! Actually I think I watched it at work, so that doesn’t count!

    1. Oh my goodness, I never noticed. I have *cough cough* seen the movie twice (Mine was worth two coughs ;).)

  42. I like making games like that while running..and the passing game is my favorite during races!

  43. Jess says:

    wow, great job with the running. unfortunately, i don’t eat macaroons anymore; i’m addicted to macarons. too bad they need egg whites; i just love that they come in so many different flavors.

  44. Ragnhild says:

    Yey for 2 posts a day 😀
    Looks like you are having a lot of fun- so happy for you! The food looks delicious, and running in Central park sounds like a dream! I always take early morning runs when I visit new places! Cant wait for my Paris tip in October!
    Enjoy all he glorious vegan food NY can ofer :) How I miss that city.. 😉

  45. Mihika says:

    Wow! I would love love love to visit NY, but I thought it would be difficult being vegan, as in how would I cook and what would I eat at restaurants? What hotel are you staying at that has all the kitchen equipment?

    1. Staybridge Suites on 40th and 8th.

  46. Emily says:

    I’ll (hopefully!) be going to college in NYC next year, and was wondering whether you had any other restaurants to recommend, other than the two you mentioned here? I would love to know some places to get some tasty, healthy eats!

    1. Hi Emily! Here’s a link to my posts tagged “restaurant.” Many (most?) of the restaurant posts are NYC restaurants:

      1. Emily says:

        Thank you so much! I really appreciate this. Hopefully I’ll get into the NYC colleges I’m applying to so I can go to these places! (Food is very important to me XD)

  47. s. renee jones says:

    Hello Katie,
    I found your site about two months ago and have been loving it ever since. You and I are fairly different in looks and probably lifestyle. I’m not a chocolate lover (I only like chocolate) but I am chocolate covered. I’m not vegan but I do like eating pretty much everything. I recently found I have a sensitivity to gluten and that’s what brought me to your site. I think you’re amazing! I recently made your copycat Amy’s Mexican Tamale Pie. I shared it with people who get much of their canned food from the free food pantry. They loved it! It’s also wonderful for the elderly and disabled because it’s so easy. Personally, I love your single serving sweets. You are a life saver!

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