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Showing posts from February, 2014

Day at the Fair

This past Sunday, I visited the Florida State Fair. I have to admit that I wasn't too enthused about going, but Tim had free tickets, as he works for the New York Yankees, and they are a sponsor of the fair. What I didn't realize is that Cracker Country was a part of the fair (it's a museum that's actually there year-round, but it's on the fairgrounds, so you can visit it with fair admission). When local friends first told me about Cracker Country, I thought it sounded offensive and certainly not celebratory, let alone educational. But then when I learned about the the origin of the term Cracker and the history of Florida Crackers, I was pretty fascinated, as I love learning about historical living, especially regarding day-to-day activities.

Upon arriving at the fair on one of the most beautiful days in recent memory--sunshine and cool, breezy temps, but warm enough for flip-flips (in true Florida fashion)--and got in with ease because we came in the morning and h…

Uncle.

I've been dealing with foot pain since completing the Clearwater Marathon, over a month ago, and while I surely thought I'd be past it by the time the Gasparilla race weekend rolled around, I am not. My meager attempts at resting my foot (in between little trial runs every few days) have not been sufficient. So I decided this past weekend to let go of my hope to run the Gasparilla half marathon. It was a really hard decision, as I look forward to this local race each year. It's my favorite. The Gasparilla 15k was my first long(er than a 5k) distance race, and the half marathon has been a great PR (personal record) course for me in recentyears. But I knew that if I ran it, I'd want to run hard and try to PR, and that would possibly seriously injury my foot and certainly set my recovery time back even further.

So I emailed the Gasparilla folks to see if I could get a deferment of my race registration for next year, almost entirely expecting a firm "no" but hopi…

100 Runs

This past Tuesday, I ran my 100th run at the Four Green Fields Running Club. I joined this club as a newish runner some time back in 2011, in a effort to get to know other runners (which didn't really work out the way I expected it would, but actually led to greater experiences). At first I attended religiously but then petered out in the summer time, when 6:00 p.m. in Florida is just too hot to run. I'd come back when the weather cooled off, and then go away when I was injured. And so forth. So while 100 runs would normally be completed in under two years, with regular attendance, I've finally achieved this benchmark after close to three years. All of this said, earning 100 runs in this club is still not common. Many people come and go and never come back. So I was still greatly anticipating this evening, even though I wasn't sure I'd even be able to run, given my recent foot pain.

But I was able to get my 5k run in without pain, and a couple of friends stuck arou…

Zucchini "Spaghetti" with Lentil and Mushroom Marinara (GF/V)

This meal was inspired by a Pinterest recipe I'd pinned long ago, but I didn't feel like looking at the actual recipe; I knew basically what I needed and decided to just experiment. Plus, I used marinara from a jar, which I happened to already have at home.
Ingredients: 5 small zucchinis (or 2-3 large) 2 c. cooked lentils 3/4 jar of marinara (because that's what I had) 5 crimini mushrooms, wiped clean and diced 2 cloves garlic 1 small shallot bulb olive oil, salt, pepper, basil, cayenne
Equipment: I used a mandolin slicer with a special blade to get the zucchini in the right shape, but you can also use a spiralizer or a julienne peeler
Because I already had the lentils pre-cooked (in my handy rice cooker--who knew!), I didn't need to bother with cooking them. I just put the marinara, lentils, and mushrooms in a pot to heat up (and cook the mushrooms) and added the spices.
Next, I peeled the zucchini, which isn't necessary, but I wanted the "noodles" to…

Best Damn Race...to Watch

Saturday morning, I woke up to my alarm, set for 4:55am. I took a quick shower, put on my race outfit, including the cute new pair of shorts I'd bought for half-off at the BDR expo, and I stopped to consider the pain in my left foot. I felt it when I merely walked from the bathroom to the bedroom--each time my foot went from flat to flexed and pushed off the ground. And sometimes, unknowingly, I'd step in a way that made the pain suddenly sharp and pinching. Also, my neck was a little sore from having been rear-ended on my way to work the previous morning (no damage to either car). So I doubted out loud whether I should try to run the half marathon that morning. Tim helped talk me down from the ledge, repeating the logic I'd already told myself over and over again: I wasn't going to have a good race no matter what, and chances were, I'd only make my foot worse by racing on it, and then I might not be able to run the Gasparilla half marathon three weeks later. Also,…