Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Gobble Gobble

Today while I was on my run I was thinking about the new Paleo Diet craze. I have a few friends who are VERY into it. It is really more of an obsession than a diet I think. I've put the book on my Christmas list so that I can learn more about how to eat like a cave man, but really, all these crazy anti-carb diets got me thinking. I should write my own diet book!

Yup, I would call it "The 1940's Diet: How to eat like your Grandmother did". My grandmother Helen is pushing 90 years young. She gave birth to seven children. Helen is a lean little lady, and the few moments I've been able to spend with her in the past 10 years I've learned this about her eating. Helen eats oats with milk everyday for breakfast, and not the pre-packaged sugary kid either. She also has a banana. For dinner she will have 2 servings of veggies along with her starch and protein.  I don't really know what she has for lunch, but I think it's something in the way of a salad or sandwich. She doesn't eat any pre-packaged sugary snacks, and she stays away from soda and usually alcohol. I have seen her drink wine on occasion. Seems pretty simple really, make your food and eat it, and don't eat a bunch of processed food.

Heading into Thanksgiving, there are a few rules I have for the weekend. I must earn my turkey! Meaning, a walk or run some time in the morning. I have a fun 5k Turkey Trot planned. We will be in South Carolina, so I will probably take a lot of walks and soak in the last days of warmth and sunlight before we head back north into the winter!

I already ran a Turkey Trot in New Jersey this past weekend. It didn't go as well as I would hope. It seems I can't stay healthy for more than a few days. After a nice 5k time trial with the WVU Cross Country team on Tuesday evening (18:04) I was sick to my stomach on Wednesday with no idea why. The little bit of vomitting I did seemed to zap my energy, and after a long car ride I was in no mood to run fast. I did okay with my 29:50 for 5 miles which is the equivelant of an 18:00 5k, but I wanted more. Maybe this Thursday's Turkey Trot will go better. I have been pumping myself with vitamins and trying to get rest. We'll see!

Recipe of the Week
This week's recipe is my dad's Thanksgiving leftovers sandwich recipe.
You need some nice sturdy bread. Then you spread some cranberry sauce on the bread, top with turkey, then stuffing, then mashed potatoes, maybe even a little bit of mayo, or gravy. I prefer to warm everything before it goes on the sandwich so the cranberry stands out, but you could warm the whole sandwich also if you like.
Tell me what you think!!

Picture of the Week

An aerial view of the Manasquan Turkey Trot. Taken by my sister Jane.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Dream a little dream

On Sunday I sat with Eileen and watched the NYC Marathon. It is a marathon that I have yet to conquer. NYC was supposed to be my first marathon back in 2001, right after 9/11 and the death of my father. I guess it wasn't meant to be since I got some kind of 24 hour bug the night before and I spent the whole evening throwing up. If it happened to me now I would definitely pack my bags and take off for home before the race even started, but back then I figured I needed to at least try. I tried for 4 miles, then I got on the subway and went to Brooklyn. I eventually got turned in the direction of Central park and made it there in about the same time it would've taken me to run it. Oh well!

As I sat there watching these incredible women run awesomely fast on a not so fast course, I couldn't help but think maybe one day that will be Eileen. Maybe she will be able to achieve what I couldn't. Or maybe she'll be a snow boarder, or a mountain biker. Maybe she'll be the President. Who knows! But it's both awesome and scarey to hang out with a 7 month old, or a 3 year old, and wonder what lies ahead for them. What will they turn out to be? Only time will tell!

Now that I am over my sickness (I gave in and went and got some anti-biotics on Friday) I've had a great week of training. I finished off my "down" week with a 16 mile run. Then on Tuesday I jumped in with the WVU girls for my first track workout in over a year and a half. 8x800's. Felt great!! My right achilles has been bothering me a bit, otherwise I'm sure I could've done 10. One day at a time.

Since I gave up on trying to run Philadelphia Marathon (it's next weekend) I am going to bump up my long runs again and go for 22 this Saturday. I've decided to run Rehobeth Marathon in Delaware in December. I feel much better about that decision. I have an extra three weeks of training.

Product Review
Lately I've been loving a couple of new Saucony Products, so I feel I should share the joy!!
The first is the Saucony AMP Pro2 Reco.  These are recovery slippers that I like to wear after a long run or hard workout, or just when below my knees are hurting. They come in whole sizes, so I would recommend ordering up. I am a 7.5, and I ordered a 7, I should've ordered an 8.

My other favorite right now is the ProGrid Peregrine.  I am fond of Trail shoes because I live on dirt roads and I like to run on trails, but these are extra nice because they are very light weight for a trail shoe. I have been doing most of my running in them, even my long runs, and I ran the Spruce Knob half marathon in them.

Recipe of the Week
I chose this one because I make an easy, one pot version, and I wanted to see if I could do better, which I did. Also, I had egg noodles and Mushroom soup that needed to be used!
I used Panko bread crumbs instead of the home made kind here, and also black pepper because I didn't have red pepper.

8 oz yolk-free, whole wheat wide egg noddles
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 (10 oz can) condensed, reduced-fat cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup light sour cream
1/8 tsp. ground red pepper
12 oz white tuna, packed in water, drained, broken into chunks
1-1/2 cups frozen baby peas
1 slice whole wheat bread
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 cup low-fat milk
Preheat oven to 350°F.

Spray a 2-1/2 quart casserole dish with cooking spray.

Cook noodles in large saucepan as directed. Coat a large skillet with cooking spray. Add onion, cook 4-5 minutes. Stir in soup, sour cream, milk and red pepper until well blended. Remove from heat.

Drain noodles; return noodles to pan. Add soup mix, tuna and peas. Toss well. Transfer mix to casserole dish.

Prepare fresh breadcrumbs: Tear bread into pieces, place in bowl of food processor. Process until finely minced. Sprinkle evenly over casserole. Top with paprika. Spray top of casserole with cooking spray.
Bake 30-35 minutes or until heated through.

Pic of the Week
                                          Travis and Rocky on our dirt road!!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

It's November

This wacky weather has given me yet another cold. It's my third in six months. The last two I went and got anti-biotics, so I pretty much refuse this time! I will try to weather the storm. If I am no better by Monday I might bite the bullet and go to the doctor.

Funny enough, this latest sickness came only hours after my best long run in 2 years. Ron (my long run partner) and I ran 20 miles at 7:30 pace, progressing the last 8 miles and finishing at 6:48 pace for the final mile. When I got home I started to get the chills and sorted other funkiness. I really hate being sick. I especially hate it three weeks before a marathon.

I was already on the fence about actually running Philadelphia Marathon. I was feeling like I needed a little more time. A few more weeks to get in some runs longer than 20 miles, and also some good workouts. So when I got sick I decided to throw in the towel. I will basically be missing another week of training just when my toe was getting better.

I've decided to run Rehobeth Beach Marathon in Delaware with my training partner. that will give me 3 more weeks of training. The weather has been beautiful, but I am now armed with a nice weather cover for the jogger. I hope I won't have to use it too often before Christmas.

I'm hoping this funk will be gone by the end of the weekend. I have been drinking more tea than the queen! At least I am staying hydrated. If Eileen would sleep for more than 4 hours in a stretch it would help me greatly, but she doesn't seem to be in any rush to do that!

The big hub-bub around here lately was of course the snow storm. I was all set to get up on Saturday morning and drive up to Oakland to try and win a pumpkin role at the 10k. I woke to snow covered roads and called my friend Jen who lives up that way. Oakland gets more snow than Bruceton, and Bruceton gets more snow than Morgantown. So it was raining in Morgantown, snowing in Bruceton with a couple inches of accumulation, and snowing even more in Oakland with about 7 inches of accumulation. Jen told me I should stay home and she braved the snow covered roads to get to Broadford park which is usually 20 minutes away but took her 50 minutes. Then they decided not to run the 10k and only run the 5k. So, I am glad I stayed home!

Recipe of the Week (or two)
Last week I hosted a Pampered Chef Party, We had great fun. It prompted me to look on their website for some recipes. This is what I found:
Easy Chicken Fajitas

1   medium red bell pepper
1   medium green bell pepper
1   large onion
1   plum tomato
1   pound boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1   package (1-1.25 ounces) fajita seasoning mix
2   garlic cloves, pressed
1   small lime, cut in half
8   (7-8-inch) flour tortillas, warmed
   Optional toppings: salsa, shredded cheese, guacamole, sliced pitted ripe olives and sour cream
  1. Cut bell peppers into 1/2-inch strips. Cut onion and tomato into 1/4-inch wedges. Set vegetables aside. Cut chicken into 1/4-inch strips. Combine chicken and seasoning mix in small bowl; toss to coat and set aside.
  2. Heat Grill Pan over medium-high heat. Lightly spray pan with vegetable oil using Kitchen Spritzer. Add bell peppers and onion; cook 3 minutes without stirring. Stir and cook an additional 3 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Remove vegetables from pan; set aside.
  3. Spray pan again with vegetable oil. Add chicken; cook 2-3 minutes without stirring. Add garlic. Stir and cook 3-4 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Add reserved vegetable mixture and tomato to pan. Squeeze lime over chicken mixture. Cook 1 minute or until heated through; stir.
  4. To serve, spoon a portion of the chicken and vegetable mixture in center of each tortilla. Top with desired toppings, if desired.
You of course don't have to use their grill pan. 

Picture of the week

                                            Dragon Takes flight!