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Saturday, August 30, 2008

17.72 sixteen miler.

Ugh! I thought I was running 16 miles and just finished a few minutes ago. I went on to WalkRunJog (check link above) to measure the distance and it turns out I went a little longer than I had planned! No wonder i feel like *%#$&!! I came home and my friend Gale, who was over, got a worried look on her face when she saw me.

Digestively, again I feel fine! Didn't eat before but had a coffee or 2 and a gu after the first 8 miles.

I get to eat anything I want now!! Woohoo!!!! I think a slice of cake may be calling my name later!

Billy's Bakery, here I come! I walked by last week and the fragrance pulled me in! I was riveting to the spot in front of the carrot cake and my feet refused to move until I bought a slice. I asked for a thin slice, but unfortunately they were already apportioned, so I was stuck with a giant wedge of carroty goodness. Needless to say, I ate the whole thing and then thought I could simply run it off. Mmmmmm... Billy's is on 9th avenue between 21st and 22nd.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Frittata Magic

I am the Queen of easy, relatively healthy meals.  I usually make the same couple of things, but recently was inspired to make a frittata - mostly because I like to say it- frittata, frittata, frittata! No, still not tired of it - frittata! ok, now I am done.

Anyway, I am telling you, it's so easy and delicious and you can use whatever leftover ingredients you have around, i.e. an old piece of cheese, some leftover potatos, those 2 eggs that you bought at the Farmer's Market sometime this summer. 

I had most of those old ingredients laying about, plus I bought some fresh sage, some Chanterelles (just a small handful), and some crusty grainy bread.

The other great thing about the frittata, besides it's endearing name, is that it's a one pan meal. It's great if you have a pan that's all metal so's you can move the pan to the oven for a broiling, dramatic finish!

2 eggs(can add a smidge milk)
2 small potatoes, new potatoes, fingerlings, etc., sliced thin
1 shallot or small onion chopped finely
1 clove garlic chopped(optional if you have a hot date soon)
2-3 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil or butter(you are going to hell, yes)
1/4 cup Pecorino cheese or other old cheese
handful sage leaves or any other half-dead herb
handful mushrooms or fave vege, anchovies, etc.

Heat oily substance in small saucepan at medium high.  Add shallot and garlic and cook for a minute. Add potatoes and saute until soft and starting to brown.  You may want to cover the pan to cook through quicker. 

When potatoes are soft, make sure they are evenly distributed over the pan. They will form a crust. Beat eggs, adding salt and pepper to taste and chopped sage. Pour egg mixture over the potatoes. When eggs start to bubble, turn down the heat, shave the pecorino evenly over the eggs, add mushrooms or anchovies, etc...and cover with a tight lid for 10 minutes. 

After 10 minutes have passed, take all the crap that you store in your oven  out, turn on the broiler, uncover the pan and move it under the broiler on high for 3-4 minutes, keeping an eye on it. When it becomes a pleasing color to you, take it out of the oven and eat it. Don't share unless you are getting something in return.

Finally got it right

I haven't tried the ENSURE method to nutrition before long runs, but I really have figured out how to feel great during and after long runs. It's so easy I can't believe I had to suffer for so long before coming to this conclusion. I have to thank again, Lee at Jackrabbit Sports. He is the one who told me that the digestion stops after a while of running. So what I have been doing is having almost no solid food. Just a banana, some water and coffee. Then after an hour or so of running, having a gel, gu or shockblocks gets me through. 

Afterwards, I also waited a good while to eat solid food. I had some more water, some sports drink, a shower and then an hour later, a meal. 

The next day I felt not at all sore, no indigestion, nothing! Yay!
So, my latest long run was Saturday. My fellow marathon trainee, Ani,  picked me up at home in midtown and we run down 6th avenue to Joe Waverly to pick up our fellow runners for our usual 6 miles. We had a beautiful run down and back and then Ani, Kristine (who's not training, just crazy) and I ran down the closed-to-cars Lafayette, over the Brooklyn Bridge and back to Waverly for a gorgeous 14 miles! 

Afterwards, Ani felt compelled to get a Beard Papa creampuff and we took a few minutes to wind down while checking out guitars at the famous Matt Umanov guitars on Bleeker street.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Yesterday's gorgeous run!

It was one of those rare moments in life when you realize you are seeing something rare and just by chance. It reminds you why you love to run, why you love to be alive!

Yesterday evening I went for a run. I wasn't particularly happy about the prospect of banging my bones on the hard cement after a long day at Grand Central Terminal working at Joe and dealing with (mostly nice, but sometimes "trying") customers. I just knew if I didn't get my run in, my day would not be complete, nor would my weekly mileage.

It had been a lovely day, mostly sunny, but when I got to the park, it started to get very cloudy. The sky was heavy with storm clouds as I run up the east side, and when I turned into the 103rd street transverse, it started to sprinkle. Only fantasizing a little about the chances of lightening striking me down, the long-term effects of being hit by lightening, and how that's just the type of thing that would happen to me, in lieu of, say, winning the lottery, I rounded the corner to the east side.

The rain got heavier, but felt great. It made me feel like some kind of warrior, braving the elements, and as runners passed by in the other direction, we exchanged knowing smiles, acknowledging our shared adventure run.

As I neared 72nd street, I saw the sun shining from the west, lighting up each individual raindrop like a crystal. Then I saw it: The biggest, baddest rainbow I have ever seen. The ONLY rainbow I have ever seen in all my 13 years in this gray, colorless town.

It was a moment I hope I will always remember. It was a moment that will inspire many more runs in all weather.


Monday, August 11, 2008

Yesterday's long run and recup

So, I haven't really officially announced it, but I am planning on running the Marathon in November. Basically, I will train for it, but will be ready to step down if injured. Last year, I had a stress fracture in my right metatarsal in June, so I am doing better already!

So far, I've run some 10's, 12's, 2 half-Marathons, and 2 13.5-14 milers, including yesterday's  2hr & 11 minutes run. 

Yesterday's run was the most successful so far in that I felt well afterward digestively. I had been having stomach upset for the full day of the run and didn't understand why until...

I spoke to Lee who owns Jackrabbit Sports, my fave place to buy shoes. He comes to Joe(mutual appreciation society), and when I told him about my indigestion, he told me that 1)The digestive system basically shuts down after a certain amount of time of exercize, and that 2)The best thing to do is to drink one's caloric intake with something like ENSURE, which has lots of calories, but is easy to digest. Also, he said not to eat a lot afterward, but drink liquids for a while afterward, until the digestive system starts up again. 

Okay, admittedly I did NOT drink ENSURE, but will try that next weekend. I had a whole grain bagel with PB &J and a banana, and then waited an hour or so. I had a Vanilla gel after about 7 miles, stopped a few times for water, and walked after the run was over to cool down. I drank a coconut water that has lots of electrolyte. Yum!

I did not eat solid food until dinner, but made a delicious smoothie at home. Want the recipe?

8 ounces lowfat or skim milk
4 tablespoons fat free yogurt
2 Medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup frozen berries(I used Raspberries)

Today, I feel great! Not even a little sore, although I didn't move from my couch the rest of the day, except to finally eat dinner, which was my favorite: Salad Nicoise! Want to recipe?

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Tasty Pasta Carbo Recipe

I have been really enjoying cooking and thought maybe you might want a recipe now and again. This one's tried and true! It would be perfect before a race..maybe 2 nights before.

Pasta with tomato, basil, garlic and anchovies: In this recipe, you don't actually taste the anchovies..they just add a rich base flavor to the sauce.

1 large and 1 small can of whole peeled tomatoes, preferably good Italian ones
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped in large chunks
1/2 a Valencia or sweet onion, chopped medium fine
1 small jar or can (about 1 ounce) anchovies
4-5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup (or more to taste) fresh basil, ripped into small pieces
salt and pepper to taste
red pepper flakes to taste
Good parmegiano cheese
Whole wheat (or favorite)pasta

In a medium saucepan, saute olive oil, add garlic and onion. When they start to turn shiny, add anchovies. Anchovies with melt into the oil; when they do, add basil and cook for about a minute, add tomatoes, squooshing them one at a time with hands(preferably clean hands), and adding the juice. Allow the sauce to boil and then turn it down to simmer for at least an hour, or until it cooks down . Add salt and pepper and red pepper flakes to taste while cooking.

Cook your pasta of choice until al dente. Drain and put back into sauce pan. Add the sauce and mix. Allow pasta to finish cooking in the sauce for about 5 minutes to permeate the pasta with the sauce.

Serve with extra fresh basil and freshly shaved parmegiano.

Report back to me.