Back at Work!

Today was the first day of school! It looks to be a promising year–I am excited!

Went out to lunch today with some gals, and had the worst salad ever. Literally, ever. I ordered a “Cobb Salad with grilled chicken, no egg”. Check this out:

That is most definitely a greek salad. I asked 3 times if it was a Cobb Salad and she assured me it was–olives, onions, green pepper, yellow pepper, pita bread and all. And 2 bacon bits! It wasawful. Will never go back to that restaurant!!! Needless to say I didnt eat it (cant stand olives, raw onions, or any kind of peppers!), and left hungry :(

Anyways, over the weekend, I did a 2 hour run and it was the best run of my life this far. I got in 15 miles and averaged an 8:07 pace. Yes, that is faster than that awful 10k I did last month. On the way home from the race at which I did my run (while spectating), PW and I decided to stop at the Gap because I had a 30% coupon that expired on that day!

Work clothes! Yes, I am going to single-handedly bring back the argyle sweater vest, you wait and see!!

Driving to the city to give a massage tonight and then have a 75 minute run to complete tomorrow morning before school!!

Creepy track guy? Check. Good eats? Check.

I have a couple things to write about. One, my track workout from yesterday, for our usual installment of Nightmare Track Thursdays! I also have some book club eats to show you. But first!

The other day, Ethan happened to walk by my car and peek in. He nonchalantly asks me (completely innocently) “are you living out of your car or something?” Hmmm. My friend J (the 5k runner) refuses to even get IN my car. And one time, I went out to lunch with Chrissie and Trish, and we lost Trish in the backseat for a while under a pile of cookbooks, workout clothes, and an over bacon cooker (true story).

Sounds like its time to clean my car, right? So this morning, I went to the grocery store, put all the groceries away and then went back out to my car armed with many grocery bags. 45 minutes later I have removed all trash, clothing, cookbooks, and massage paraphernalia (I gave up my massage room and had to pack it all up!). Not only that, but I wiped down everything as well. PHEW. Perhaps now J will let me drive her to her birthday fiesta now! HA!

Okay, so back to track workout. Yesterday was 6 by 800 at 6:32/mi pace. And a total run of 75 minutes. Ran to the track, got in a 20min warm-up, and then started running. In the beginning, I like to only go by the pace my Garmin gives me. And this is because (Im hoping someone else stands up and tells me they do this too!) I like to do math in my head while running. Sometimes I’ll calculate my miles for the week, or the grams of carbs I ate for the day, OR in this case, Ill calculate how long each half mile should taken me, then each 400, then each 100. Keeps me busy (or my mind off the pain!)

Track workout was uneventful other than the fact CREEPY GUY was there again!! He was, of course, creepy again. To the point that I reported him and his license plate to the campus police. You never know! Extra creeped out because he drove home while I was running home and did NOT make the turn he made last time. You know what that means? Maybe he had to go to the post office after his walk. OR MAYBE he just went out of his way to follow me while I was running last time. :( :( :( Needless to say, I can never go back to that track. Ah well, only one more track workout before the marathon anyways!

And now: BOOK CLUB! Last night was book club and it was filled to the brim with delicious eats (and wine!).

Tomato, mozz, basil:

See that little sphere in the back? That is heaven. It is puff pastry and cheese (brie maybe?) and carmelized onion. Amazing.

Cheese and salami plate!

Homemade banana bread!

There were a million other delicious things (ie Guacamole that I dominated, buffalo chicken dip, ice cream bon bons…the list goes on!) The pictures above are just what I slowed down enough to take pictures of. After a chipotle burrito for dinner on Wednesday and the over indulgence of last night, had to get back on the wagon today!

Breakfast was my go to parfait:

Now I have a quick recovery run to do, some school stuff to finish (like maybe hang some posters?!), and then a “THIRTY YEARS OLD” fiesta to attend in Cambridge!!!!!

Scituate 5k Race Report Type Thing. And my weekend.

Ah, racing. Ive missed it. And by “it”, I mean 5k’s only, not 10k’s. 3.1 miles is my favorite race distance. Its just all out, painful the entire way, and over with quick. Its a race you can run on pure adrenaline (and not have to worry about bonking!).

So, Saturday morning we drove down to Scituate, one of the most beautiful towns in Massachusetts. My friend J was doing her first 5k, hoping her shin splints wouldnt disable her on the run. And boy was I happy to have the company on the drive down, and be part of the big deal that is Your First Road Race!!

While driving, I did the typical QT2 Race breakfast, for the first time ever. No problem there! Ran into a couple of friends pre-race and made plans to run with one of them for the race. Did a quick 10 minute warm-up run during which I felt slow and had an expresso flavored Gu (YUCK! Tasted gross, but I welcomed the caffeine since I couldnt have coffee that morning!)

The goal for the race was to go out at 6:50 pace. It was flat, and fast. Finished in 21:00 flat. Not a PR (20:45) BUT, considering how that 10k went a couple of weeks ago, I was happy! Ended up 3rd female overall, and 2nd my age group The best part was seeing Billy and Claire out cheering on the course! They are friends of ours that live out that way and we only see them on vacation in Lake Placid once a year. Awesome boost at Mile 2!!! J also surpassed her goal by oh…8 minutes! With no shin pain! So the race was an overall success!

Clearly I am excited about being done!

After the race we drove home, I finished up my run (had to do another 20 minutes!) and then drove up to NH to watch Timberman on Sunday! The race was fast, and super fun to watch.
I had a 2 hour run on schedule, and was feeling pretty duffed up from the race on Saturday. Thankfully, 2 minutes into my run I literally ran into a friend Shaun who kept me company for the 25 minutes it took for me to run from parking to transition. Then, as luck would have it, Cait had to run as soon as I got to our tent, so I did another 35 minutes with her. Chatting with them made my run fly by. In the end, I only did 45 minutes by myself and then pulled the plug because I could feel a twinge in my hamstring and didnt want to take any chances! Ended up with a total run of 1hr45min and 12.5 (EXACTLY) miles. Would have liked to finish the run, but what can you do?

Last week of summer vacation is officially here. I have 3 massages to give, a classroom to set up, some school meetings, book club, birthday party, UFC fight to watch, and a 41 mile run week. Phew!

What have I been doing? Running. A lot.

Ive been away. Running and sleeping and trying to reign in the diet. I had a terrible run yesterday at noon, so cut it short, and then completed the rest at 7pm. And that second run was awesome. Fastest Zone 1 to date. But thats all boring, lets get to the good stuff:

I made Heath bar (toffee) cookies today. For my in-laws. They are being SO GREAT and watching our dogs for us last minute tonight and tomorrow night so we can go up to Timberman-fest and cheer for all of our friends and I can do my 2 hour run in a change of scenery. It wont completely make up for what they are doing, BUT I thought it would make them forget for at least a little bit how much Kona barks when their dog Kaiah comes near her!

These are in no way core-friendly but are in every way delicious:

I ended up not using the white sugar, and adding an egg.

Make your basic cookie dough, separating the wet and dry ingredients.

(Dry: 1.25 cups flour, .5 tsp baking soda, .5 tsp salt Wet: 1 stick butter, 1 egg, .75 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp vanilla extract)

Mix together and get deliciousness (I could live off of plain ole cookie batter like this!) This can be your base for any cookies, add in whatever at this point. I picked TOFFEE! Because its her favorite.

Now, in case you were wondering, I did in fact make my own Heath Bar bits. By individually crushing each one of those individual sized pieces. With my wooden spoon. I ended up using about 1.5 cups.

Ball ‘em:

Bake at 350 and scrumptious-ness will ensue (did I make up that word? perhaps.)

I did, in fact, have one. How could I not?

Now I am off to get my oil changed, mess around with my room at school, and massage some legs. Tonight, we are having dinner with PW’s sister and her boyfriend. They will be enjoying pizza (it is Friday!), while I munch on salad. Why would I do that to myself you ask?

Because tomorrow…I tackle a 5k. In Scituate. I have a very specific goal (which after the 10k, I probably should have learned my lesson), and Im crossing my fingers I can hold on for the 3 miles! Also it is my friends first 5k and I super psyched about it because I know shes going to go way faster than her goal and it will be awesome!!

Workout Post!

While in New Hampshire, I had a track workout on schedule. Thursday morning I woke up and all I wanted to do was anything but run. You know those days? After lounging around on the deck, eating a bagel, and hemming and hawing, I decided. No track workout. And you know what my friends said? YEAH RIGHT! Get in the car! And to the track we went. I did a 20 minute warm up, which ended up being awesome jawsome. Between the cool (65 degree!) weather and running on the track, my Zone 1 was super speedy for me! It was a boost of confidence for me I guess, because I ROCKED the track.

I hit every.single.400! 1:31, 1:31, 1:31 and so on and so forth. Like clockwork! It was pretty great. And I had personal cheerleaders, which was also nice and motivating in itself!!! Good friends are the ones that make you run when you dont want to, because they know it is needed!!

Did an easy run yesterday, and back on the saddle today. Low and behold, finally, my fastest (other than the track!) Zone 1 run to date! I dont want to get too excited though, because I have this tiny little 2 hour and 5 minute run scheduled for tomorrow.

After my run today I went on a crazy furniture arranging binge. Maneuvered everything downstairs…tomorrow I tackle the upstairs!!

New Hampshire!

For the past couple of days I have in New Hampshire with…get this: no computer! Crazy, I know. Had a great time hanging out with some friends, cooking and eating some good food, going to the beach, hanging out, playing some arcade games, and watching some meteor showers!!!

Instead of going in order, Im just going to post pictures in the order they are on my computer!!!

First up: The beach! It was a little cool so we parked our chairs on the sand and snacked while enjoying the view!!

The water in this lake is so clear!


Went to an arcade that happened to be the American Classic Arcade Museum. No, really:

I played a serious amount of skeeball, but I also spent a good amount of time with this bad boy:

And, since this is partly a food blog, we also went to a farmers market (which was by far the best farm stand I’ve ever been to) and bought some veggies to make dinner with!


YEP! BEES!


Its summer, so we had to get corn. Besides, it was S’s only request!!

Along with cheeseburgers, summer vegetables (sliced, roasted with oil and spices rolled up in tin foil, on grill) and salad.

Such a good summer dinner!

We also stayed up last night, after dinner, arcading, and ice cream, and laid in the driveway watching the meteor shower. That state is a great place to watch for shooting stars, where we were they was not a streetlight for miles!

This entry is getting a bit long so tomorrow I will post about my run workout up there! For now, its back to home life! Need to get up early tomorrow and do some runnin’ and laundryin’! Going to miss the cool weather and crickets tonight for sure!

Check, check it out

Look at these cute little kitchen gadgets a friend gave me yesterday!

a MONKEY peeler!!! Love!

I woke up late morning, and by the time I got out for my run, I knew it was going to be a really hot one. I was wearing a sleeveless shirt so I applied my sunscreen, grabbed my single fuel belt water bottle and clif bloks, and head out for my workout.

Unfortunately, I failed to wash my hands between applying sunscreen and filling water bottle so it tasted like Ick went unused. Workout today was 20 min warm-up, 25 minutes with some blocks of tempo thrown in, and then a 15 minute cool down. Quick and dirty tempo workout, and I was feeling the effects for the rest of the day!

I was starving by dinner time so I made my stand-by soup and added some peas (my second favorite vegetable, potatoes are #1!)

It was of course, delicious. Cant go wrong with those ingredients!

Heading to NH tomorrow with some gals, should be a ridiculous, over-the-top amount of fun. Swimming, beaching, hanging out (…and a track workout Thursday morning but Im trying not to think about it until then!). So I need to go do some laundry and pack! Rumor has it we will have a gate for our fence tomorrow too…

Family Game Night?!?

So PW’s mom planned a game night for the whole family to go to. His sister and her boyfriend, his younger brother, me and PW and their parents. Unfortunately, PW had to work so I was holding up the central Mass contingency of the fam all by my lonesome.

We started out by eating a fantastic meal outside. This is foreign to me because it is not something we do out here! It was definitely the perfect night for it though!

Check this out, pretty core-friendly! I also had some unpictured salad with Newman’s Own lime salad dressing (it was good!). PS those potatoes were amazing!

We then moved on to a highly competitive game of whiffle ball in the backyard. It was me, my mother-in-law, and PW’s brother, vs his sister, her boyfriend, and his dad.

Here is Dawn, in action, and following through on her swing (haha Nick!)

Scott scored a triple and I was pretty excited about it. I call this picture “I approve of Whiffle Ball”

And, to not keep you in suspense. We won. Well, it was sort of a draw because we had an extra “up”. But in my head, this is the winning team (thats small-dog hair all over my black shirt by the way, poor planning!):

There is a curfew going on down there because of this Triple E thing mosquitos are spreading (hence why we had to cut the ball game short!). LUCKILY, as I was looking forward to these for months, Dawn had an indoor smore maker!!! She brought that thing out and I ate two toasty marshmallowy smores!

Post-s’more time we played Apples to Apples and Catch Phrase, which were both hilarious and a ton of fun. Who knew board games could be that awesome?

Family game night was a huge success….now we just need to do one that PW can attend! He’d be pretty killer at Catch Phrase I think. And S’more making :)

My sister-in-law also gave me (us) the most amazing present ever but it will have to wait because I need to go get ready for a certain ladies baby shower–I need to leave right now!!

First track workout of the year!

After last nights carbo-load, an early wake up call, fixing the pilot light on our gas burners for the first time, and figuring out I had miscalculated and only needed a 75 min run (instead of 90), I was feeling pretty pumped up and ready for a track workout. It called for 3 by a 1 mile. After a cup of coffee, a glass of water, and a bagel I was set!

Yes, I am wearing mis-matched socks.

My instructions from PW were as follows: run to the track, warm-up, run the first mile no faster than 7:07, then run the last 2 as hard as you can, with 3 minutes rest between each one. Then run home (all up hill). The most important part of the instructions? Whatever happens, just make sure to get your heart rate for the last mile. This is because somehow my Garmin messed up during that 10k two weeks ago and didnt record HR!!!

So, I set off with my bag of Strawberry Clif Bloks to the local community college’s track. For some reason, I thought it would be a really nice track? But it was dirt. And on a slant, which at least kept it interesting! There was definite uphills and downhills. And a weird guy who kept talking to me but he’ll come into play later in the recap.

28min warm-up (this was my run to the track and then a mile to evaluate my “flat” zone 1 pace) followed by a Clif Blok. My HR strap kept messing up and I was praying it would just man up and keep it together for the mile repeats then it could unclip and run away for all I cared.

First mile, 7:05. Perfect. I felt a little sluggish, but nothing another mile couldnt fix it. My goal for Mile 2 and Mile 3 were too take 10 seconds off each one, giving me a 6:55 average for the 3 miles.

As I am walking my 3 minute recovery, very overweight creepy man walks over to me (he had been walking the track as I was running, hugging the inside “true distance” of the track, refusing to move over to the outside of the track even a little which is a HUGE pet peeve of mine on tracks.) and says “Youre making me tired just watching you!” “Ha, ha” I say, “Sorry” and then turn and walk the other way. Eat another Clif Blok.

Second mile, 6:55. YES! That was FUN!. I got this! I sprinted the last .25, and kind of want to sit and recover, but Ill walk it off (“put some dirt on it” as my husband would say).

Creepy guy comes over again during my 3 minute walk. “Oh, are you practicing? You run for school dont you!” Well, had he been just a tiny bit less creepy, I would have been extremely flattered. I may have even hugged him. Run for school? I am like 4 million years passed the time of being able to run for a college. Oh and I am doing 6:55 miles which wouldnt even get me on a D3 team BUT! I appreciate the thought. But, again, I was getting weirdo goosebumps being around him so I say “Ha ha, I am way too old for that, just running for fitness!” (I wanted to make a Fergie reference but I dont think he would have got it!

Mile 3, 6:53. Ah, well, I tried. I was really hoping for a 6:45 but my lungs couldnt keep up with my legs. My heart rate topped out at 203 during this mile, but my legs felt really great, effortless even. Wish I had the cardiovascular fitness at this point!

Walk for a little bit, then cut through a grass field to avoid the man who was now just standing next to his car. Start the long, uphill run home. Run down the campus, onto the main rd through town, take a weird right through this area with no houses. Who pulls up next to me beeping and driving really slow? Waving out the window? Yep. You guessed it. I mumbled something profane under my breath, said a quick thank you for the random string of cars that drove by and would be witnesses and then slowed my run to a crawl. Until he was out of sight. Im sure he didnt have any bad intentions, probably just a friendly guy out for his morning walk, but you can never be to careful. I would rather offend someone then end up in a bad situation!

Finally got home, for a total of a 73 minute run, had my special recovery concoction:

And now I am sitting here with my compression socks on (Zoot, FTW!), drinking a water bottle of pink stuff, and watching Thats So Raven. True Story!

My conclusion: the workout was alright. I am happy with it considering it’s the first track work of the year. As everyone has felt before, its just hard to come to terms with being slower than you have in the past. Knowing my previous mile repeat times over the last 3 years, its kind of bummer. But I’ll get there! Speed comes over time, with consistency! And my HR monitor worked for the whole thing, which is a victory in and of itself!!

Carbohydrate-City Dinner!

Friday night is cheat night in this house. This is because gigantic workouts usually happen on Saturdays. Tomorrow, PW has a 6 hour ride followed by a 50min run–starting at 6:30am. I have a 90min run with a track workout smack in the middle (insert frowny face here!!). We used to eat our weight in pizzas on cheat night, but now that we are 9 and 10 weeks out, respectively, from our big races, we are “dialing it in” (Guru term!)

That means that tonight cheat meal was carbs, carbs, carbs. Baked chicken parmigiana , whole wheat pasta with sauteed garlic and onion sauce, and the greatest garlic breadsticks of all time. Have I mentioned how much I love cooking? Because I do. Because I also made us breakfast for lunch just to be in the kitchen.

Anyways:

It was as good as it looks. Really.