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Showing posts from January, 2014

Crockpot Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili (V/GF)

For Christmas, I asked for and received from my older sister (thank you, Catie!) a slow cooker. Especially during marathon training, it's hard to have energy left for cooking after going from a full day of work to a run or workout that usually lasts over an hour long. So I figured this would help solve some of my problems.
I pinned a bunch of gluten-free, vegan recipes from Pinterest, and this is the first one I tried.

I'll admit that, while the slow-cooking part is great, about 15-20 mins prep time was still required for this particular recipe (I know, I know--that's not a very long time). I haven't quite figured out when to do the prep--night before? morning of? But how lovely it was to come home after my workout, take a quick shower, and have a warm meal just waiting for me. Granted, I have to look for the recipes that take 8-10 hours in the cooker to make this possible (on a weekday, anyway), but that doesn't seem hard to do so far.

Clearwater Marathon: Race Report

This past Sunday, I completed my third marathon at the Clearwater Running & Fitness Festival. Not only that, but it was my second one in just over four months. And even though I knew I had prepared and was capable of running another sub-4, I wasn't sure I'd have it in me to push through all 26.2 miles by myself. I had nobody to pace me, like I did at Steamtown. But in the end, I was able to pull off a PR by 1 minute, 49 seconds (and FYI, I had to use a time calculator to figure that out). Here are my stats:
Race: Clearwater Marathon (Clearwater, FL) Date: January 19, 2014 Gun Time: 3:53:54 ChipTime: 3:53:34 Average Pace: 8:56 Overall Place: 79/472 Age Group Place: 6/32
My biggest conundrum prior to this race was how to dress for it. I knew it would start out in the upper 40s but would end up, for me, possibly in the low 60s with full-on sun. That's a significant difference for racing-wear. So after shopping around all day Saturday, Tim and I both decided not to wear a throw-…

2014 Goals

I wasn't gonna do it, but measuring my progress on last year's goals was such a fun exercise that I thought, why deny myself that same pleasure in 2015? So here they are. I didn't include any PR goals because I figure those are a given. (I amazed myself by only listing one running-related goal. I must feel the need for improvement elsewhere.)
Work on relieving anxiety. This is a biggie, as last year was one of my most anxious years. I feel I can do better. Do speed work. I've been saying I'll do this since I began running. It's time to put words into action. Visit a new place. There are so many cities and states I have yet to visit, it would be silly not to. Do more yoga. This will help with #1. Plus, it just feels good for my body and soul. Eat less sugar. I developed quite the cupcake fixation last year. I'm taking baby steps to end that. Send more cards. Because I know how good it feels to receive them. (And the USPS currently sells Ray Charles stamps, so…

2013: Year in Review

I recently re-read a post from early last year with my year-end totals for running in 2012. I ran 924.35 miles, and I made a goal to run at least 1,000 miles in 2013. I'm happy to say I've exceeded that goal by 288.59 miles! And there are at least a couple more runs that I didn't record on my watch, so they aren't included in this total.

This looking back reminded me that I'd also set some goals for 2013. Let's see how those panned out:
Run a sub-2:00 half marathon.
Done and done! I first met this goal at the Gasparilla Half, and then topped it at the Nike Women's Half (and still ran a sub-2 at the St. Pete Women's Half at the end of the year, though not a PR).Train for a marathon without getting seriously injured (i.e., don't overtrain).
Check!Appreciate the diversity of friends I have and don't be overwhelmed by them :-D
I admit I fell short of this at one point in the year when I had a lot going on, but I tried to remain aware of it and address…

18, 20, Taper!

Flatwoods 18
Over two weeks ago, I had decided I wanted to do my 18-miler at Flatwoods. Perhaps it was the previous weekend's tough (and steep) bridge run that had set my mind on the flattest possible terrain. Tim and I had gone to Crossboot the night before, which could have meant heavy legs and sore muscles for the morning's run, so I didn't have high expectations for a stellar run.

The main running trail consists of a paved seven-mile loop plus a few extra miles to get from the two park entrances to the loop. The park also has dirt trails that cut through the wooded areas surrounding the paved trail, but I mainly run on the pavement. The park is actually called "Flatwoods Wilderness Park," and I've heard stories about some such wild things that exist in the woods. I've seen lots of deer--I actually saw three beauties cross in front of me Saturday--otherwise I've only seen snakes, rabbits, squirrels, and birds. But I've been told that eight-foot…