Long Run Essentials

Is it possible to have a “leisurely” nine mile run?

…yes!  I made my mid-week long run enjoyable by allowing myself to run slower and just have fun.  The weather was absolutely beautiful.  Temperature: low 70s.  Wind: a little high as it was over 14 mph, but that’s a better problem than having no wind!  With conditions that were near-perfect for a run, I was determined to make my run perfect too!

Including my breaks at red lights and a dash to grab my hat that flew in the opposite direction (stupid wind), I was averaging 8:34min/mi! This made me extremely excited because I truly felt like I was running slow – which compared to my 7:32min/mi yesterday – I was.  But what made me excited was the fact that my now “slow” run is about 60+ seconds faster than my normal runs were in October! Yippee!

Although not all runs are relaxing as today’s was, there are some essential items that can make it more enjoyable bearable.  These include:
1. GU
2. Bodyglide
3. Running Clothes
4. iPod/iPhone
5. Watch with  a timer

GU:  probably one of the grossest things a long distance runner eats- but without it, our long runs would be much more difficult.  It’s basically gel in a small pouch that you squeeze out into your mouth while running (and then you drink a lot of water so it absorbs into your body quickly).  Why is GU so important?  It provides you the energy need to complete your long runs.  When should you use it?  For runs lasting over an hour.  They have many different flavors, and my favorites include: Chocolate, Lemon-Lime, Vanilla, and Strawberry Banana.  Although I’m obsessed with coffee, I do not recommend the coffee flavor.  Here’s the website if you’d like more information: https://guenergy.com/

Bodyglide: helps prevent blisters, chafing, and irritation.  You can put it everywhere and anywhere.  Enough said. http://www.bodyglide.com/

Running clothes: so, so comfortable (much more than the Soffe shorts I used to wear).  Not only are they more comfortable but they make you feel like a runner.  I know this sounds silly but… when you’re dressed like a runner, how can you not feel like one?

iPod/iPhone: music is essential for me on my runs.  Without it, I would probably be bored to tears after about…5 seconds.  I personally use my iPhone as my iPod.  This not only helps with safety (I can make “save me, Mom” calls if necessary), but also allows me to complain to my friend Elise about how much I just hate love running sometimes.

Watch with timer: this is similar to the running clothes section.  Using a timer on your run makes you feel as though you’re a “real” runner in a competition- even if it’s just against yourself.  I am extremely competitive, so I love trying to beat my old times.

Hopefully these long run essentials will help you out on your next run!

Questions for you:
What are your long run essentials?
Do you listen to music on your runs? Or do you prefer running without it?

Hope you had a relaxing day, too!

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BYOB

Hey there!

Today was one of those days.

The days were you have to just take a break, curl up in a blanket, and watch Ellen. And laugh like crazy when someone’s dance moves look eerily similar to your mother’s.

The days were you decide to skip making dinner and use that birthday coupon you got from Noodles & Co.

Birthday Coupon

don't mind if I do, Noodles & Co.

I usually order the Chinese Chop Salad but with my long mid-week run tomorrow (9 miles!), I figured the Penne Rosa was the way to go!

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It was so, so delicious. The free part didn’t hurt either.  But wait, why am I showing you pictures of pasta and bread…when the title is BYOB?

Well, I have a confession to make.  I love veggies.  A lot.  I wanted to incorporate more veggies into my dinner so, before I headed out to Noodle’s, I steamed some broccoli.  I had planned on getting Noodle’s to go…but instead I decided to eat in the restaurant. Yep, BYOB means Bring Your Own Broccoli. Awkward and embarrassing? Yes. Too embarrassing to not eat it? Well…

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…busted 😉

Sometimes, you gotta do what you gotta do.  For me, that was making sure that I ate the carbs & veggies I need to help fuel my run.  It’s really important for runners to make sure they are eating the items their body truly needs.  Pasta, bread, and other forms of carbohydrates truly help to make runs “easier”.  I have learned (numerous times) how terrible it can be to not fuel your body correctly.  Eating too much food, eating oily or greasy foods, or both, will not help you out the next morning.  After eating too much of my favorite dinner on Friday, and being forced to take breaks on my Saturday run, I’ve realized it’s better to stick with average-sized, nutrition-packed entrees instead.

As my roommate and long-time runner always says, “Food is fuel.”  Try your best to fuel your body correctly with healthy and nutritious foods and your body will thank you during your runs.

Have a good night!

Delish Frittata

Hey friends!

I hope your day was as good as mine!  Today was my “off” day for marathon training and I must say, I’m definitely appreciating the lack of a run.  I treated myself out to a nice steak dinner with wine tonight (gotta get that iron in from the red meat 😉 ) but still felt like cooking.  Apparently, I just need to get some type of cooking or baking in for the day!

To make this recipe, I used some food that I had and also grabbed some food from the dining hall.  “Shopping” at the dining hall definitely makes life easier when you don’t have a car!

Anyways, here’s the recipe:

1/3 cup chopped green pepper
1/3 cup Cherub tomatoes (I love these!)
2/3 cup steamed broccoli
1 yolk
2 egg whites
2 TB skim milk
1.5 cheese sticks (I used Frigo Light Mozzarella)
Ground Pepper, to taste (I used a few dashes)
Garlic Powder, to taste (I used a few dashes)
Red Pepper Flakes, to taste (totally optional- but I love spice, so I used a few heavy dashes)

Preheat oven to 450F, and place pie dish inside to get warm.
While the oven heats up: steam the broccoli and cut up the green pepper, tomatoes, and cheese sticks.
Next, crack eggs and put the 1 egg yolk and 2 egg whites into bowl.
Whisk eggs, and add 2 TB of skim milk.
Pour egg mixture into pie dish and add vegetables, cheese and seasonings.
Bake for about 15 minutes, until sides are brown and top isn’t runny.

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My first frittata!

After it’s out of the oven, run a fork around the edges so that the frittata isn’t stuck to the dish.
Then, grab a plate that’s about the same size as the pie dish, and flip it! (and cross your fingers that it doesn’t turn out like mine…)
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Okay, okay…so it’s not the prettiest looking frittata. Give a girl a break 😉

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Hope you enjoy this recipe!  After sampling it tonight, I am definitely looking forward to having it tomorrow after my four mile run 🙂

Study time for this girl- have a good night!

First Post!

Hey friends!

I never imagined that I would have a blog before- this is so exciting!  I’m creating this blog to share tips and tricks I’ve learned while training for half and full marathons.  However, there is more to my life than running and eating so I’ll share other things, too! 🙂

Hope you enjoy your run with me!
Sarah