Friday, August 22, 2014

Lifting, Living, Decorating - Move.Eat.Live.

Phew, finally made it to Friday! That means Fun for Friday around here. I've been enjoying recapping my Move.Eat.Live. moments from the week, so I thought I'd share again. And, as always, I would love to hear your Move.Eat.Live. moments as well.

Move

I've gotten in some good runs this week, including a 10-miler yesterday morning. It's supposed to be uncomfortably hot this weekend. Since I was going to be up at the crack of dawn running yesterday anyway, I thought it'd be smart to get the run done. I had wanted another 12-miler, but will gladly take the 10, especially because it was shared in good company with Amy.

I got in some good weight workouts this week as well. I love working so close to my home. This lets me get in weights easily during my lunch break. Plus, slinging some weights around can help if you're feeling stressed.


Eat

Last night I made a version of my garlicky tomato sauce (sorry, forgot to take pictures but I can assure you it was yummy). It's such a simple sauce using fresh cherry or grape tomatoes, tons of garlic, white wine and fresh basil.

But last night I wanted to thicken the sauce a bit so I added in some tomato paste as well as nutritional yeast flakes, spinach, artichokes and some tofu that I had marinated in a homemade basil vinaigrette.

Jason immediately asked what I had done different. Sometimes it turns out in your favor to revisit a tried-and-true recipe and jazz it up a bit.

Live

This week was pretty busy for both Jason and I. I didn't really get a chance to just sit outside and read, though, it was too hot for that quite honestly. But I did manage to finish some home decorating projects (which you've probably already seen me sharing and posting about).

I'm hoping to enjoy some down time this weekend. We may go to a baseball game. This is the last weekend for the Arkansas Travelers to be playing here, and wouldn't you know that it's supposed to be 100 degrees. Guess those temps will be a fantastic excuse to enjoy some pool time though right? Anyone want to join me?


What's your Move.Eat.Live for the week - or for the weekend? 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thankful Thursday - Running, Sight-Seeing and Decorating

Tuesday Speedwork

Now that I'm on a more structured marathon plan, I've set aside Tuesdays for speedwork. I'm thankful for the company I had this week cranking out my 400s. Plus, who else is crazy enough to run up a bridge to get a sunrise picture after said speedwork?


Nice Views

The sun is sadly rising later and later so my RunRises are waning. At least I live in a city where we do have some nice views near the water. Not quite the same as a spectacular sunrise, but not too shabby to see either. One of the best parts about running is looking around and taking notice of your surroundings.


Thursday 10-Miler

I am thankful that I was able to knock out my longer run this morning. It was still warm and humid, but at least I don't have to get up at 5 am on Saturday to try to avoid this fun forecast. What happened to the Polar Vortex?



Home Decor Projects

I'm thankful that I have just enough talent (I use that word very very loosely), or maybe false sense of talent, to take on some home decor projects. I try to be thrifty, and we've picked up many things on the side of the road that I've refinished (some still need to be tackled though).

My office desk was a freebie spotted during a run. One new filing cabinet I scored for $30 bucks then repainted along with my old filing cabinet. Rather than buying a new office chair, I recovered it and made new valances to tie together the colors in the room (walls were already burgundy, desk I painted burgundy then painted cabinets a teal color). I had enough fabric leftover to recover a pillow as well.



What are you thankful for this week?

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Running and Getting Crafty

I'm a bit behind on a weekend recap, so this will be more like a training lately and things I do other than running kind of post. In other words, random. Random can be good though, right? Ok, good. Glad you're with me.

This weekend started off nice and early for me. I knew it was supposed to be really warm again, and humid. Maddie decided to also assist as my early morning alarm clock. Since I was up, I headed on out the door just after 6 am to get in my long run.

It started off fairly decent, around 67 degrees with some clouds. The clouds of course ended up clearing off, but thankfully that was near the end of the run. I managed to get in 12 pretty good miles. The last mile and a half was where I was sort of just ready to be done. But, I had some nice views to get me through the miles.


I ended up hanging out on my patio reading and recovering for a bit. I mean, keeping your feet propped up on the lounge chair or in the pool counts as recovery right? My sister ended up stopping by a bit after noon and headed out to run some errands with me. Then she, Jason and I went to have a late lunch.

Later that evening, she came back over with her boyfriend for dinner. By this time I needed to be in my compression sleeves in full recovery mode. Thankfully, my sister totally understands. Her boyfriend likely thinks I'm a nut job, but that's all good. He'll have to get use do it!

Perfect attire for having company over for dinner

Sunday I headed out for an easy run and took it slow. By 7:15 it was already in the low 80s so taking it slow wasn't that hard. I hung out in my pool for a short bit before taking on one of my latest home decorating projects - recovering our office chair. I've been tackling some repurposing projects for the office.

I am also making valances with this same fabric that will tie together my filing cabinets that I painted as well as my found on the side of the road and painted desk. I'm all about repurposing! I plan on sharing all the office redo projects just as soon as I get the curtains done. See, I do other things than run!



Yesterday was a much-needed break from running, but I was back at it this morning. Amy decided to join me for speed work - 6 x 400s. They were tough, and always remind me that I am not a sprinter, not at all. But I know I need to do the work, and sometimes having company during times of pain and misery can help. And as if the speed work wasn't enough, we ran up the bridge to catch the sunrise before heading back to the house. Gluttons for punishment indeed.


Runners, do you flaunt your compression gear for company? Anyone else like to think of themselves as crafty? 

Pinterest is both my friend and foe. I always think I can do some amazing projects. They don't always turn out quite as I'd like though.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Move.Eat.Live. Running, Tempeh Tacos and Relaxing Outside

Happy Friday! Dare I ask who's ready for the weekend? This week has felt longer than usual and I know that is in a large part due to some rogue dogs causing mayhem at night. But, it's Friday so let's have some fun! Here are my Move.Eat.Live. moments from the week.

Move

I had some pretty good training runs this week. Tuesday I got in 6 400s then knocked out my leg workout at lunch. Hello tired legs. I got in my upper body splits on Monday and Thursday but will admit that I am being negligent of chest workouts.

Wednesday I took it slower and easier as recovery and also because I knew Thursday would entail a speedier run with my crazy running buddy. We enjoyed 8-miles meandering through the 'hood switching up from our usual route.



Eat

Because we enjoyed the Tempeh "Fish" Tacos from last week so much, I made them again this week. I have a feeling they'll appear on the menu quite frequently. I didn't have any cherries to make the Cherry Salsa, so I just did a quick pickle on red cabbage instead.


Live

As has been fairly typical this summer, I have been trying to sit outside in the evenings and enjoy simply being in the fresh air, not watching tv, not stuck indoors. I'll either sit outside and read or work on training plans for clients. Not a bad way to unwind after work. 


What's been your Move.Eat.Live. moments of the week?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Thursday Thoughts - Different Running Routes, Slow Sunrises & Rolling

Happy Friday Eve!

It's been one of those sleepless weeks for me. The dogs are in control basically. Heath (who is blind for those who don't know), used to be terrified of knocking down a baby gate This meant we could simply prop it into place and they would stay put in the kitchen all night. Little man has gotten brave, with the exception of storms, and started busting out of the kitchen each night. That was fine, he didn't mess with the other gate leading up the stairs ... at first.

Long story short, he makes his way up nightly now and Maddie has decided she wants to follow. It took her a while to get over the idea of stepping over the fallen gate. The problem is nails on hardwood is loud, Maddie roams and roots around looking for something to get into, eat and/or destroy, they get into tiffs when she makes him move out of his bed ... and it goes on and on.

So, the dogs have taken over. And I'm wiped out, especially after getting up to run on top of the lack of sleep. Hello zombie land. This ramble is all to say that I'm doing a Thursday Thoughts round up. A bit long-winded for that announcement right? Let's blame it on the lack of sleep shall we?

1. This morning Amy came over for our weekly 8-mile run through the 'hood. Today we decided to head out and about meandering away from our typical route. Sometimes a change of scenery is really good. Along the way I saw a large, loose dog, we both stumbled and almost fell at different times (I may have a sore ankle tomorrow), she saw a worm the size of a small snake and we noticed new houses for sale.


2. The sun is coming up later and later. This makes me really sad because I know summer is quickly coming to a close. I'll miss my sunrises during winter training. Maybe I'll end up running some evenings and catching a few nice sunsets though.


3. Lots of running adds up to tight calves and glutes. This means that I need to be more disciplined again with my stretching and rolling out on my Triggerpoint Kit. I'm thinking I may also need to start investing in regular massages, which may mean playing the lottery.


What are some Thoughts for Thursday you'd like to share? Anyone want to come play dog whisperer at our home?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Tempeh "Fish" Tacos with Cherry Salsa

Fish tacos seem to be all the rage. Being that I don't eat meat, I have never experienced a fish taco. I will admit that I always like how fresh the tacos look with vibrant purple cabbage, tomatoes and greens.

I have wanted to attempt to replicate a fish taco. I have tried with tofu, and that wasn't bad, but I wasn't totally sold. I decided to give it another shot and try using tempeh, mostly because I didn't have any tofu pressed and ready to go.

I have seen blog posts over the years for recipes using dulse and kelp powder or flakes as a way to impart more of seafood-ish type of flavoring. Dulse and kelp are types of seaweeds and are known to be rich in nutrients and minerals as well as being flavorful.

So I decided to just play around with some flavors and see what happened. As you'll see in the recipe, I don't have specific measurements. It was mostly done by taste and the liquid amounts were measure visually just making sure I had enough marinade for the tempeh essentially.



Tempeh "Fish" Strips 
Ingredients: 
Bragg's Amino Acids (or low-sodium soy sauce)
Rice wine vinegar
Lime juice and zest from 1 large lime or 2 small limes
2 tsp (approximately) maple syrup (could use honey or agave nectar)
Dulse flakes - to desired flavor
Kelp powder - to desired flavor
1 package tempeh
Directions: 
Mix together all ingredients minus the tempeh using the amount of liquid ingredients necessary to make the amount of marinade you would like. I used more of the Bragg's then enough rice wine vinegar to mellow out the amino acids and to give me enough marinade to cover the tempeh. 
Cut the tempeh into 1/2 inch thick strips. Place in container or plastic baggy and cover with the marinade. Allow to marinate for several hours or overnight.
Heat up a skillet with small amount of olive oil and place the tempeh strips in the pan. Allow them to brown on one side, flip and brown the other side.

While the tempeh was marinating, I made a Cherry Salsa because I had a bag of cherries on hand that were needing to be used up quickly. I love a fruit salsa for the sweet and spicy contrasts. I also thought that sweet and spicy contrast would pair really well with the saltier flavors from the Tempeh "Fish" Strips.

Cherry Salsa 
Ingredients: 
30-40 cherries, pitted and chopped
1/8 red onion, minced
1-2 jalapenos, minced
apple cider vinegar
zest 1 lemon
juice 1 lemon
Salt, cumin, cilantro to taste 
Directions: 
Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and allow to refrigerate several hours or overnight so that the flavors can meld.

To serve as tacos, lightly brown corn tortillas in a non-stick skillet. Fill with the Tempeh "Fish"Strips, lettuce or cabbage and top with the Cherry Salsa.

This might have been my best tempeh dish to date. It was full of flavor and not the slightest bit dried out, which can happen with tempeh. In fact, it's on the menu plan again this week.

Are you a fan of fish tacos? What about a fruit salsa? 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Every Runner Needs a Good Running Partner


This morning my running buddy came over so we could try to knock out a long run. It's supposed to be warm and muggy most of the weekend, so I sort of convinced her to just get it done this morning so we wouldn't have to get up super early tomorrow to get our long run done. 

Amy got to my house just after 5:30 and we headed out into the thick, soupy air. As a side note - my Garmin is messing up yet again. This is the replacement I recently paid for, second replacement I should add as the first they sent was a total dud. Now it's not charging, losing charge immediately and freezing. Garmin is completely losing my respect as a loyal customer. Ok, end of rant. 

We started off and since I had to use Jason's Suunto, which displays mph not mpm, I needed to rely on Amy's watch for our pace. After some stupid training mistakes this week already, I had warned her that I needed to slow my roll. We were going to shoot for 11 miles and I wanted them to be smart training miles not trying to race them.

Of course, at the start we kind of kept letting the speed creep up, but then we'd pull back some. It was so hard to breathe, that I think that helped with slowing down. I was actually, surprisingly having a really good run. I didn't realize it right away, but Amy wasn't. 

She said she had to stop for a second, no complaints from me mind you. But when you're out running with someone, you almost always tend to feel bad when you are the one who needs to stop. But she's been there and done that for me. That's what running friends, and true friends do right? 

Often times we will hit intersections of traffic that give us a second to catch our breaths, but this morning somehow we were getting the green light like it was all planned out just for us. Figures right? So by the time we were hitting the long stretch of ascent heading away from the river, I could tell she was not having a good run and had to stop again (still no complaints from this girl). 

I felt terrible since I'm the one who convinced her to run with me. Otherwise, she would have rested and not been out there wanting to just lie down in someone's yard crying "Uncle." Yes, she mentioned that at one point. Maybe finding a lawn with sprinklers going too would have been ideal. 

And man have I been there. A couple of weeks ago, I stopped at mile 7 of 8 miles and literally just stood under a tree. Just standing. Like somehow I was going to miraculously get home if I just stood there long enough. The only difference was that I was alone and had no one to try to keep my spirits up or drag me to the finish. 

Where I'm going with this tale is not to point out that Amy is human (phew) and can occasionally have a bad run, but that we all can AND that having an awesome running partner is so important. In the past, the only person I ever ran with was Jason, then later Amy. But after she moved, my runs have become mostly solo. So, I definitely look forward to running with a partner when I have the chance. What's great about Amy is that I can always count on her, we can talk about anything (literally), it can help the miles go by and it's great support. 

I thought it would be fun to share what I think a great running partner is and what they do that no one else might do.

1. Wake up at 5 am to drive to your house to meet up for a run. 
2. Agree to run 11 miles before work on a Friday after already running 4 days straight.  
3. Help carry the water. We've done this twice now where I'll carry the bottle for half the run then she'll carry it for the other half.  
4. Drinking out of the same water bottle (see #3) and not being grossed out one bit when said water bottle smells funky, not because of the bottle itself but the fabric handle.  
5. In-depth discussion about GI issues with ease as if discussing clothes shopping.  
6. Appreciating a beautiful sunrise and willingly stopping to take multiple pictures without complaint.  
7. Willing to throw themselves on a vicious dog about to attack. Luckily she didn't really have to go that far, but when she said she was thinking about it, I kind of believe she would have done it! 
8. Willingness to hold water bottle so that I can barf after intervals. She said she'd do this and I may put her to the test on it if my next speed work is anything like it was on Wednesday.  
9. Agreeing to run in pretty much any and all weather conditions from freezing rain, boiling heat and torrential downpours.  
10. And of course a great running partner will turn your Garmin off for you when you do fall out during a craptastic run. 

But most of all, a great friend and running partner is someone who's just there for you. They get you. They understand your crazy ways. Because, let's face it, they're just as crazy! So even if you're a solo runner, you don't care for groups, I still think it's important to have at least one running buddy to share crazy running adventures with.

What would you add to this list? What would you do for your running buddy or what have they done for you? 

And I think we need a National Running Buddy Day to celebrate the crazy runner friends in our lives.