Category Archives: Running

A Few of my Favorite Things…

“These are a few of my favorite things…”  (for health and fitness)

Lululemon Wunder Under crop. Best Workout pant ever.

These are worth their weight in gold.  Awesome waistband, “no stink” luon fabric (look it up, it will change your life), and perfect for every type of exercise – from yoga to CrossFit.  They have also lasted so much longer than their cheaper, “knock off” counterparts from Target, Dicks, etc. which is perfect considering I wear some form of these pants almost everyday.

TRX Suspension Training System

The TRX system is probably one of the best “home gym” pieces of equipment to invest in, aside from maybe a yoga mat and stability ball.  You can do so many things with this system, and tailor it to your own ability level.  This is a hard workout for both beginners and advanced athletes, you will not get bored.

The Tofu Xpress

If you cook tofu on a regular basis, this is a must-have.  I just got one for my birthday (yes, lame, I know) and it is the best method for pressing tofu out there.  Easy to use, this tofu press helps press out water from your ‘fu, leaving you with delicious tofu -ready to marinate, bake, or broil.  YUM 🙂

All hail Trader Joe’s.

This is pretty much self-explanatory.  TJ’s is awesome because they are a cheap grocer who stands by their products and sells inexpensive, wholesome food without all the crap that you should be are reading the food label for.  They cut out the middle man because they make so many of their own products, making them affordable and more awesome.  And if you live in a state that sells wine/beer at grocery stores, I highly suggest the vino.

Strength Wraps

Inexpensive wrist support wraps that are great for powerlifting, Crossfit, etc.  Made by a fellow Crossfitter, and comes in lots of fun colors.  (Thanks, Ashley, for my pair!)

Soy Lattes

Soy Lattes.  No dairy, lots of coffee, pretty foam design :).  Awesome.

Merrell Pace Glove

Saucony Kinvara 2

I use the Merrell Pace Glove for CrossFit, speed work, and short runs.  These are “barefoot” shoes with minimal support, but have helped me build up my lower leg muscles for faster, more efficient running.  For longer distances greater than 3-4 miles, I use the Saucony Kinvara to provide more lower leg support during higher mileage.  These are a “minimalist” shoe, and therefore provide slighly more heel cushion without the bulk and weight of a regular running shoe.  These seem to have last much longer than my Nike Free’s, which felt good too, but wore out very quickly.

Kindle Fire

My new Christmas toy from Mom and Dad.  Love having my books on the go, with the option of internet access.  However, if you’re looking for more internet speed and capability, go for the iPad.  This is truly a Kindle first, with web access, not a computer.  Since I already have a MacBook, this was great for me 🙂

Lululemon Destined for Greatness Duffel

This bag will change. your. life.  I use this bag to take to work daily.  It holds my stethescope, workout clothes, shoes, Kindle, wallet, laptop, phone, lunch, water, chocolate, EVERYTHING.  And there seriously is a labeled “spot” for everything you can think of.  It even has straps to hold your yoga mat if you’d like.  Since I need to have so many things packed with me to go from work to CrossFit, to wherever, this bag fits everything without being bulky and somehow never getting heavy.  This also makes a great carry on bag for traveling.  IN. LOVE.

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A Katie Original Recipe

Whew. You would think with a day off I’d be relaxing by the pool.  Negative.

Between doing errands, cleaning up the apartment, and taking the dog out (yes, this was a time consuming activity) I’ve been rather busy all day.  But alas, when I am busiest, I am also the most creative in the kitchen.

Hayley, I stole this from you. Love it. Thanks 🙂

Anyway, here’s the skinny on the dog monster:  Finn got back from vacay and has been wimpering and crying about his little paw. Even though we know he is usually just a big baby, we took him to the vet (twice).  First antibiotics to get rid of any infection in his poor little paw, now low dose steroids and antihistamines to get rid of said paw irritation.  Now I have a puppy on steroids.  Great.

Anyway, the vet said to expect increase in appetite and thirst.  This dog has not only wolfed down any food that is put in front of him (which is actually unusual for him) but he has also drank about 6 gallons of water today.  Which means he subsequently has to pee out that water.  Which means I have been seeing this adorable fuzzy face crying by the door about 3 times an hour today.

Good thing we finally got that potty training thing down.

SO…In between all this, I have concocted a fabulous dinner for hubs and myself.

I’m going to call it: SPINACH ARTICHOKE AVOCADO TOFU WRAP

Here’s what you need to know.  It looks like this going into Adam’s lunchbox tomorrow (which also means it’s a keeper recipe):

sorry for the bad cell phone picture lighting

And here’s what it includes (from bottom of wrap to top, layered):

  • Whole Grain Tortilla (warmed)
  • 1 Tbsp. Goat Cheese spread across tortilla
  • 2 slices Honey Lime Tofu (recipe below)
  • 3 Slices of Avocado
  • 1 Tbsp. homemade Spinach Artichoke cold dip (recipe below)
  • 1 slice tomato
Can you tell I’m not a food blogger? 🙂 Wrap it up and enjoy!

Honey Lime Tofu

Even Adam is a fan of this tofu and requested me to make more.  So don’t be afraid of the ‘fu!

Ingredients:
1 Package sprouted Extra Firm Tofu (sliced into slabs, drained and pressed)
2 Tbsp. Tamari or Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp. Honey (I used TJs raw honey)
2 Tbsp. Lime juice
Whisk together tamary, honey, and lime juice in a shallow dish.  Put tofu slabs in marinade and let soak for about 30 mins. in the fridge, flipping over once if needed.  Broil tofu for about 6-7 minutes each side.

Homemade Spinach Artichoke Cold Dip

This was made as a simple and quick version of Spinach and Artichoke dip.  I love Spin dip but I am way too impatient to make the hot version, plus it’s not that good for you.  Here’s the lazy girl’s version that is much healthier.

Ingredients:
5-6 canned artichoke hearts, drained (I used Trader Joe’s brand)
1 small container (5 oz) Earthbound Farm Organic Baby Spinach
1 Tbsp. Veganaise (or light mayo if you prefer)
1 heaping Tbsp. Goat Cheese
2-3 Cloves of garlic, pressed through a garlic press
Sprinkle of grated parmesan cheese (optional)
Throw all ingredients except for spinach into the food processor and pulse for a few seconds.  Then, add in the raw spinach handful by handful and pulse again a few times so that it mixes in without making a paste out of the entire thing.  (Technical process, I know.)  You can heat it in the microwave with some cheese on top if you’re feeling fancy, or you can just spoon directly into your mouth.  Your choice 🙂
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Run.

As my Annapolis 10-Miler training commences, I start to prepare for my last two big races of the year:  The A-10 and the Nation’s Triathlon.  Both of these races will require a lot of training sessions, the majority of them being running intensive.  There will be good days and bad days…hot days and hotter days…but the more I remember to enjoy the ride, the better my running and my mind will be.

Kristin and me after completing the B&A Half Marathon 2011

The most important thing to remember when training for a big race is just to get out there and listen to your body.  Maybe its a shorter run because your body is not feeling that 5 miler.  Maybe you’re feeling awesome and you add an extra mile to your planned 6 miler.  Whatever the day brings, listen to your body and accept what it is telling you.  As long as you get yourself out on the road that day, you have done well.  Sure, there will be difficult runs and easy runs….but accept that difficult runs are supposed to be difficult and that they have served their purpose in bringing you closer to your goal.  Don’t skip, but rather enjoy the easy runs and be grateful for your body’s ability to be out on the road and running.  Those easy runs are serving just as important of a purpose as the hard runs.

Cherry Pit 10-Miler

Running helps in your understanding of your body and mind.  A better understanding of these can help you decide when its best to push through a tough workout and when its time to slow down.  The more you listen to your body, the more you realize when it wants exercise, and when it needs a break.  Learning to listen is half the battle, and forces you to become more in tune with your body’s needs as opposed to your mind’s wants.

Take Flight Triathlon 2009

Most importantly, all these running lessons apply to life in general as well.  I think running and exercise makes me a better person in general.  I believe that exercise and is an essential part of a person’s well being.

Image from Mizuno

Here’s a great article on a similar topic that I would love to share with you. 10 Life Lessons from a Reluctant Runner puts it in perspective.  This is about running, but I would argue that it could be applied to any form of exercise.  You don’t have to run everyday.  You don’t even have to run for long.  You don’t even have to consider yourself a “runner”.  You just have to get out there, keep trying, do your best, and don’t let excuses get in your way.  You might even find that you like it. 🙂

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Work It

Practice Makes Perfect. I’ve been making some good progress on my power lifts lately and my pullups.  So today I decided to show you a small montage of what we’ve been up to lately at CrossFit.  Did you sweat today?

Adam doing a Kettlebell swing

Running between exercises

The 4:30 Crew

Single Arm Kettlebell Snatch 21-15-9

Close-up

4:30 Crew doing Power Cleans on the minute for 10 mins.

 POWER CLEAN PROGRESSION PICS:

Beginning of a Power Clean (foreground – Me, background – Ashley)

Hang Stage

Triple Extension

aaand catch!

P.S. – Annapolis 10-Miler training kicks off July 10th…excited to get back to some distance running!

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Sweat Angels

This morning’s Crossfit workout left sweat angels on the floor!!

Warmup:

400m Run

25 Shoulder mobility “Dislocators”

25 Overhead Squats with PVC pipe

25 Pushups

400m Run

Main Set:

Here was the Prescription, scale down when needed:

For time:
25 Walking lunge steps
20 Pull-ups
50 Box jumps
20 Double-unders jump rope or 60 singles
25 Ring dips
20 Knees to elbows (hanging)
30 Kettlebell swings
30 Sit-ups
20 Hang squat cleans
25 Back extensions
30 Wall ball shots
3 Rope climb ascents or 15 ‘Floor to Standing’ reps

Whew! My finishing time was 21:05, followed by coach’s deep breathing exercises to cool down.  That’s when the sweat angels came out! 🙂

Also, Here’s what I got in my CSA this weekend:

  • Carrots
  • Hazelnut Mint
  • Micro Greens Mix
  • Red Russian Kale
  • Spring Onion
  • Sweet Potatoes (the biggest ones I’ve ever seen!)
Be on the lookout for Kale Chips and other yummy recipes coming from these veggies 🙂

What are you cooking for dinner tonight?? How are you getting your sweat on today?

Happy Monday!!

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Cherry Pit 10 Miler and Road Bike Woes

Sorry this has taken so long to post, but yes, the Cherry Pit 10 miler was a success!  The Cherry Pit 10 miler is run by the Annapolis Striders on the same day as the D.C. Cherry Blossoms 10 miler because so many people enter the lottery in order to run the D.C. race and don’t end up getting picked.  However, I may be a little partial, but I think the Cherry Pit race is just as beautiful, if not more beautiful, than the Cherry Blossoms run!  We ran through some of the farm areas of southern Maryland and saw some of the most gorgeous rural properties in the area.  Even saw a donkey, cow, and horse or two!  I love the country and miss being so close to it in Charlotte, but I guess it’s not so far away here 🙂  I wish I could have taken my camera on the run with me to give you guys some visuals of rural Anne Arundel County!

Ashley and Me at the finish! (I swear we didn't plan our outfits...)

This was also a special race because it was Ashley’s first “long distance” race.  She did great, and I could not have been more proud to run with her!!

beginning of the race

Almost finished!

Earlier this weekend, Adam took his new road bike out for a ride with me and I finally put my clip-in pedals on my bike.

Adam's New Ride - Cannondale Caad 9 Road Bike

 

I’ve only had them sitting in the closet since last triathlon season….yikes.  If you’ve never rode a road bike with clip in pedals, they are a great investment and give you increased power in your pedal turnover.  However, they take a bit of getting used to because you can’t just put your foot down to stop, you have to unclip.  Not so bad until you forget you are clipped in and go to stop.

Our clip-in pedals - Shimano 105 SPD

 

Anyway, I figured this was a good time to ease into them since Adam would be learning them too and we could experience our first “clip-in falls” together.  So, they’re on now, and I officially took my first fall with them about 5 minutes into our ride.  I was even stopped and “clipped out” already, but one weight shift in the wrong direction and….boom.  Face to pavement (and subsequently a puddle as well).  Adam laughed hysterically and has yet to fall.  Ugh he’s so good at everything!  But my bet is that his falls will come going 25 mph down a hill being a show-off.  We’ll see…

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Attention Women Runners!

Hi everyone! Hope you all are having a great St. Patrick’s Day.

If you are a runner or want to be one and live in the Annapolis/DC Metro/Baltimore area, I have a great race for you this summer!

 

I recently accepted a volunteer position as a Race Ambassador for the ZOOMA Women’s Race series. The event includes a 10k and a Half Marathon in Annapolis on Sunday, June 5th 2011.

This year, we’re looking to bring over 4,000 women to the starting line, and it’s my job to draw in as many MD/DC/VA area runners as possible! We had our kickoff run/celebration this past Saturday and everyone who came was awesome! There are beginner runners, veteran racers, and everything in between!

So even if you’ve only ever run a 5k, a 10k is totally doable! We have a great training program set up courtesy of Gracie’s Gear that will build you up to your distance in the next 12 weeks 🙂

Not only do we have group runs every Saturday around the Annapolis area, there will be the ZOOMA After-Party Expo, which will have live music, food, wine from Barefoot Wine & Bubbly (our sponsor!), post-race massages, demos and shopping!

For more info on the race, here’s the website: http://races.zoomarun.com/annapolis/

For more info on our weekend training runs, go to: http://www.meetup.com/ZOOMA-Annapolis-Training-Group/

Let me know if you’re interested, have questions, or would like to join in the fun runs I’ll be leading out of the Annapolis area during the next few months!

Please spread the word…the more the merrier! 🙂

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