Thursday, January 30, 2014

I'm not quite sure what I did with any fleeting time before I started using Pinterest, but I suspect my butt was tighter, my house more organized and my kids better groomed. It's just so incredibly addicting for a visual person like me. I don't share much with friends on pinterest or follow anyone I know - it's like my own little virtual daydream.  There are so many good recipes to look at, good running motivation to ponder, clothes to covet, designs to inspire. I came across this image on my Pinterest feed today, something I try to remember along my runs.....

Monday, January 27, 2014

Long run: 9.3 miles
Location: Hampton Falls, Exeter
Weather conditions: 33 degrees, partly cloudy

I got my fourth long run out the way today - so far I'm 4 for 4 in terms of winter weather conditions for my long run, which is awesome considering we've been stuck in the polar vortex (if that's something one gets stuck in) for over a week now. The rest of the week looks chilly as hell so I'm glad I got this one over with. My body felt great  today, and I ran a little bit faster than I did last week. The only bummer was my ipod ran out of battery around mile 7. I typically don't even pay too much attention to the background music, but Jeff recently put in some Pink Floyd and as much as I didn't want to admit it, it's PERFECT running music. After last week's run I was compelled to learn Wish You Were Here, which made for a nice night in playing guitar with Jeff. As a kid Floyd's music sort of scared me. As a young adult I was indifferent to it. But today as an almost 41 year old mom of two who spends her alone time trecking along country roads, I find it absolutely brilliant.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Long Run: 8 miles
Location: Hampton Falls
Weather: 30 degrees, clear

I had another day of decent weather conditions for my third long run. It was a little colder than I've been used to, but it wasn't as bad as it could've been. My muscles did feel a little numb by mile 7, truth be told.  My Monday long run fell on Martin Luther King Jr day, so Jeff was home with the girls. I ran later than normal, at about 2:20 pm, as I had a student earlier in the day and a lot of things to attend to around the house.  My body felt great this run, but I went really slow along winding, somewhat hilly country roads.  I've been trying my hand at birding, and spotted some interesting birdies along the way, which of course I couldn't identify in my book once I got home. Not knowing what kinds of birds I saw is both frustrating and liberating. Sometimes I think we spend too much time trying to learn something that isn't as valuable as the lesson of chance itself. For 20 seconds my (uphill) path was peacefully crossed by a florescent spray of wings which enriched my day more than knowing their man-given names would have. (Yes, I'm justifying being a shitty birder who may just be in it for the inevitable trip to Costa Rica) No pictures today, as I was really caught in the run, but I did make these for breakfast as a long weekend treat for the girls, so here's the recipe. These were too chocolatey  - something I usually never complain about - next time maybe half of the chocolate and some strawberries, or strawberries and banannas or just blueberries. I also used a real egg instead of the flax. Otherwise, wow, so yummy and healthy. I used gluten free flour (just grind down raw, soaked almonds). We got 6 inches of snow on Saturday, and are expected to get 6 more tonight - a very long January thus far!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Today's forecast was unseasonably mild  - 45 degrees! -and sunny, so I dropped Lila off at my awesome mother in-law's and ran six miles outdoors. The upcoming forecast looks grim, and I'm getting a lot better at just seizing the opportunity as soon as it presents itself, one of my usual weaknesses.  2014 is the year to stop overanalyzing, worrying, and taking things like sunshine in January for granted. I didn't get any pictures today and I did go a different route (to Hampton Falls), but here's a cute picture of Lila. This one's from our trip to Southern California over the holidays. After opening many presents she is so tired the only thing keeping her awake is the hair twirl/thumb suck....she's about 5 minutes away from becoming a champion eye-crosser.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Second Long Run: 7 miles
Location: Exeter and Kensington, country roads
Weather: sunny, 40 degrees

This morning I ran my second long run - 7 miles. I did the same route as I did for last week's 6 mile run, and just added a mile in the middle. The beauty of where I live is that I can run at least 20 miles without encountering a traffic light, or traffic for that matter. It's good head time. It's also a good time to check in with my body. How do my ankles feel? My back? What issues might arise during next week's 8 mile run? Today I also wondered if I was going to have enough time to pick Lila up at preschool - luckily, I just made it....the fear of being "that" mom definitely puts a spring in your step:) The run felt good. It was a lot sunnier and drier than last week's run, and the horses were out again to greet me.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

I planned on another short 4 mile run on the treadmill yesterday, but instead I got 4 plus miles in single digit temps with a gusty negative wind chill - insane! Yesterday morning I took the CRV in for an inspection after dropping Lila off at preschool and quickly learned it needed front and back brakes, which would take 4-5 hours. So, I had to walk back to our house, defrost, take out the jogging stroller, blanket and some willpower, then run to pick up Lila from school (1.25 miles), run home with her in the stroller (1.25 miles), eat lunch, clean, etc, then run with Lila again to pick up Solveig from school (1.25 miles), before finally running with both girls in the stroller (about 80 lbs of them!)  from school to mechanic (.75 miles) to pick up the car. Not what I planned on, but at least I got the miles in. The crazy thing is if felt sort of good to be able to tend to some crucial responsibilities via my own two feet. I also enjoyed the hot coca pity at the end of the day - indeed, the sugar thing will be hard! Today, however, I spin indoors and then take a long, hot quads are feeling a bit sore from some of yesterday's hills. Favorite hot chocolate recipe:

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Single digit temps today, so my short run was on a treadmill.  Running on a treadmill is brutal. Intervals can be entertaining for a bit, but they get old fast. I have mastered the art of watching shows on my Ipad while I run at a slow and steady pace. I'm currently on Season 2 of Scandal - addicting and entertaining, the 42 minutes fly by every time.  I'm also trying to step up my nutrition a bit by cutting out sugar (at least most sugar) and drinking more water. The sugar thing is hard, I won't lie. I just tell myself that I will be a toothless old lady by the time I'm 50 and that usually fights off the craving! I fill my 2 and 1/4 quart pitcher each morning with room temperature water, organic lemons and cucumbers, and vow to drink the entire thing by day's end. So far, so good. Here's a link to what I made last night for dinner, I had a pretty looking eggplant and I was feeling lazy. We try to eat a plant based diet with weekly wild salmon or haddock, and occasional dairy. I had mine over a huge bowl of steamed, lemony kale; Jeff and the girls ate theirs over quinoa pasta with marinara sauce and small green salads. Yum, and easy, all around.  Not sure if I'd add it to the regular rotation though. I used gluten free breadcrumbs and soy free veganaise instead of the yogurt. I also skipped the dipping sauce and made the "fries" a little bigger. I love to cook, whole heartedly. I try to get creative in the kitchen on Sundays, but weeknights are all about nutrition and convenience. With a stocked pantry and fresh, seasonal (when possible) vegetables a healthy dinner can be on the table in a half hour.

Monday, January 6, 2014

First Long Run: 6 miles
Location: country roads, Exeter and Kensington
Weather: steady rain, 40 degrees
There's something about the sound of "2014" that has made my life feel both modern and dated.  We're further into the 21st century and frankly, I'm feeling old. And yet, I'm also sensing that this year will bring some really cool things. Innovative things. Helpful things. Meaningful things and experiences, alone and with others. Most of all, for me, this is a year of no more "I should" or "I want to" but rather "I will", like the many "wills" we aspire to in youth. I decided to run my first marathon and registered for the beautiful Sugarloaf Marathon, way up in the northwestern mountains of Maine. This blog is a way for me to both track and share my training, insight and gratitude. Running is indeed such a solitary sport, yet there's something about the forward movement - be it while negotiating old growth forest trails, back country roads, downtown sidewalks, or beach sand - that makes it also more connected to all living things than anything else I know.  Join me along this path of discovery and inspiration, it will keep me motivated and warm throughout my winter training in chilly New Hampshire. Today was my first official day of training; I squeezed in an hour run while Lila was at school.
Just me and the horses today along Drinkwater Rd, thick fog and steady rain, but a mild, peaceful beginning.