Sunday, October 31, 2010

Lessons I Learned on My Trail Run This Morning

1. Even if it is only 50 degrees, don't wear a long-sleeved cotton shirt on a run. You may think that you will be fine, but after one uphill mile it will be all sweaty and you'll be hot. Then, later, you'll be freezing in the damp cotton.

2. Drinking water is good. Drinking water the day before a long, difficult run is even better. If you fail to do this you will have a splitting headache and you'll want to die. Also, you should buy a damn hand-held water bottle and use it already.

3. Just when you are about to die of dehydration, a knight in shining armor on a white horse (or, a husband in shiny spandex on a single speed mountain bike) will show up and offer you a drink from his bottle and words of encouragement. Fairy tales do come true!

4. Do not eat chips and hummus and halloween candy for dinner. There is no nutritional value in that and your body needs decent food to work properly. Your body hates you right now.

5. While trail running in late fall, sometimes you have to shuffle sideways down a rocky descent, holding onto a tree for dear life. It's the only way to avoid a rolled ankle. Also, you should buy some damn trail running shoes already.

All excuses aside, today's run was probably my worst ever. But shit happens. Bad runs happen. I'm sure even elite athletes have bad days. What matters is that I did what I could and I'll try again another day.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Recipe: Cheesy Pumpkin Risotto

I made this risotto last night and it was delicious! Brad even ate his first serving without hot sauce, which means it was actually really good, not just good to me (I eat some strange things that other people do not enjoy, but that's a story for another time).

Cheesy Pumpkin Risotto
serves: 6-8?


3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 c. arborio rice
1 c. dry vermouth
32 oz. container of chicken stock
1 c. canned pumpkin puree
1 Tbsp butter
1 c. grated fresh parmesan cheese
about 1/4 c chopped fresh basil
lots of kosher salt and pepper

-heat olive oil in a dutch oven or other large pan over medium heat.
-saute garlic for about 30 seconds, then add uncooked rice and stir to coat.
-cook for about 2 minutes, stirring the whole time, then slowly add vermouth.
-add chicken stock about a cup at a time, stirring constantly. Wait until the rice has absorbed the stock before adding more.
-this will take quite a while, but there is something very relaxing and soothing about stirring a risotto. Just zone out and slowly stir.
-once all of the stock has been absorbed, turn off heat and stir in the pumpkin, butter, cheese, and season with salt and pepper. Stir until cheese and butter are melted and everything is incorporated.
-mix in basil and serve.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Scenes From My Thursday Evening Run

I feel so lucky to be able to run on these beautiful roads. Even if they seem to be in an area where drug deals go down. Maybe it's time I start running with this little lady:

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Random Facts

1. I am currently boiling 6 potatoes, which I will soon mash and eat with leftover turkey meatloaf. Yeah, I make mashed potatoes on a Tuesday night.

2. I ran 5.5 miles on Saturday morning at KSF, which is a -- wait for it -- new PDR.

3. I went to yoga last night and ended up on the mat next to the girlfriend of one of Brad's friends. That was a pleasant surprise.

4. I feel like I am getting a cold, so all day at work I was downing Airborne, zinc lozenges, throat drops, and Tazo Passion tea.

5. All of these homeopathic remedies made me feel like my head was going to float off of my body, and I zoned out at my desk today and lost about 20 minutes.

6. That last one actually happens more often than I'd like to admit.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

It's Only October!

Brad and I have gotten soft.

We both grew up weather hearty in Wisconsin, home of the sub-zero temperatures and waist-high snowbanks. Many years, there was snow already on the ground on Halloween and I would have to squeeze my costume over my winter coat to go trick-or-treating.

Then we moved to Pittsburgh, where we lived in an old apartment building with no insulation while Brad was in law school. We were living off my paltry income, so we could not afford to turn on our heat until at least December. We bundled up in layers (including hats and scarves), slept with a space heater in our room, and dealt with it.

I'm sure you see where this is going. We turned our heat on this week. The low temperatures were still in the 40s and we caved.

"It's too warm in here! I'm going to turn the heat down to 70!" I said the other night.

Who am I?