Archive for September 13, 2009

My Running Story

I’m pretty sure I had my favorite bowl of pasta today. Ever.

Before I get to that…

Pre-soccer, I snacked on one of the cookies I made yesterday, and 2/3 of an almond butter & honey sandwich (on an Arnold’s Thin).

You know what I learned today?  I’m not very good at soccer.  Very rarely did the ball come to me during our game, but whenever it did, I didn’t do anything particularly useful with it.  Hopefully I’ll get better as we have more games.  It also probably doesn’t help that everyone else played soccer in grade school, whereas I haven’t played since I was four or five… At least I’m trying, right? 🙂

Pre-run, I tried 6 SportsBeans, which were much better than I expected.

I don’t know why I’ve been so dang hungry today, but it got to the point that I had a headache!  I almost cut my run off early because I was feeling  so sick, but I was bound and determined to get my 5K practice run in.  It was super humid today, and I was glad I decided to run on the treadmill so that my new issues of Women’s Health and Runner’s World come inspire me to keep going!

Unfortunately, I was so glad to have made it through the 3.1 miles, I forgot to look at the time I was actually done.  I’m pretty sure my stats were:

Distance: 3.1 miles

Time:  Just under 35 minutes

Average Pace:  11:40

For most of mile 3, I was running pretty easily at a 11:00 pace, but man that was a hard run!  I know a lot of you out there think nothing of running a 3.1 mile run, and consider my pace to be pretty slow, but I am pretty darn proud of it!

In high school when we had to run the mile for gym class, I remember being pretty proud of my 18-ish minute mile run/walk.  Back in January, when I started running, I could barely run 1/2 a mile, let alone a full mile, at a 15:00 pace.

By February, I was up to a full mile. I remember immediately texting my mom, Dan and Kelley to tell them I had run a full mile without stopping; I was really that proud!

By July, I was down to a 12:00 mile.  Now, I can run a sub-11:00 mile if I push myself.

Next Sunday, I am running my first 5K.  It will be my first race, so I’m running it to complete it, and not worrying about my time.

I’m excited that I can run 3.1 miles without stopping, and that it takes me less than 35 minutes!

Pasta Perfection

After soccer and my run, and the fact that I walked to the soccer fields to the gym and back home (total 30-ish minutes), a plate of pasta sounded just about perfect.  I pulled out the asparagus pasta I got at the Farmer’s Market, and set to work making my own sauce.

It was delicious, and possibly my favorite pasta dish I’ve ever had.  You couldn’t really taste the asparagus in the pasta, but the noodles still tasted delicious!  I love fresh pasta; so much better than dried!

I started sauteing 3 carrots with some extra virgin olive oil.  After a few minutes, I added a sliced zucchini, along with generous amounts of basil and oregano, and a touch of sea salt.  In the last few minutes, I added a handful of spinach and about 1/2 cup of tomato sauce.  When everything was warm and the spinach was wilted, I poured it over the pasta.

Delicious.  Pasta perfection in a bowl:


Quick snack and a bit of work for my internship, then I’m off to bed!


September 13, 2009 at 10:49 pm

Curried Tomato & Vegetable Stew

This recipe kicks off my “Recipes” page.  Unfortunately, I took a bunch of great pictures of each individual step, but they somehow got deleted so I have NO pictures of this yummy stew. 😦   Next time I make it, I’ll add in a picture.

Curried Tomato & Vegetable Stew (loosely based off of this recipe from Eating Well)

1.  Mix the following in a stockpot:

  • 1/2 c. red lentils
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 1 T curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 cup water

2.  Bring to a boil, then cover and lower the heat.  Allow the mixture to simmer until it has thickened and gotten soft.  This took about 30 minutes for me.

3.  In the meantime, chop a head of cauliflower, 2 zucchini, and dice 3 cloves of garlic (or use the pre-diced kind in a jar, like I did!)

4.  Add the cauliflower, zucchini, garlic, 28 oz. jar of fire-roasted tomatoes, 1 tsp cumin, 1 1/2 tsp curry powder, and 1 tsp ginger. (I love the curry flavor.  If you aren’t a huge fan, add a little less.)

5.  Cover and simmer until the cauliflower is softened.  I gave it 20 minutes, but I could have probably gone for awhile longer.  Stir occasionally.

6.  Remove from heat and add 2-3 squirts lemon juice and 1 1/2 tsp sugar.

Enjoy!  This can be served over rice noodles or brown rice, or eaten as is!  We used a piece of roti (Indian flatbread) to soak up the rest of the broth at the end.

September 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm

Tips for Running Outside, Anyone?

Hey all, just a quick post as I take a break from my homework, then I’m diving back into it!

I think the past two appetite-less days finally caught up with me.  I’ve been so hungry all day!

IMG_2963Breakfast this morning was Peanut Almond Oatmeal!  It contained:

  • 1/3 c. oats
  • 1/3 c. water
  • 1/3 c. vanilla soy milk
  • 1/2 banana, sliced super thin
  • A dash of salt and a splash of vanilla

Topped with:

  • 1 T. almond butter (finally decided to try a jar from Trader Joe’s.  I was a little iffy on the texture at first, but by the end of the bowl, I was in love.)
  • 1 T. cacao nibs (for a bitter, chocolate crunch!)
  • A tiny slice of the coconut bread that is getting quite stale, but was great in the oatmeal
  • 3 PB pretzels, crumbled


After a few hours of homework/ catching up on blogs/ planning my week, it was time for lunch!

IMG_2964Some of my pasta leftovers from last week, with a little pesto and Parmesan on top to add some more flavor.

IMG_2969Strawberries from the Farmer’s Market (seriously, how does this vendor STILL have fresh, delicious strawberries?  I bought an extra quart for freezing…) with a dollop (appx. 1/4 cup) Vanilla non-fat Oikos and a few tablespoons granola.

I am STILL hungry, and have soccer in about an hour, so another snack will probably come in there.  My workout schedule for today:

3:30-4:30   Kelley gives me soccer lessons

4:30-5:30   We have our first intramural soccer game

6:00-6:30   5K run, possibly on treadmill, depending on my knees

I know a lot of people hate running on the treadmill, but I love it!  I like to read while I run so that I’m not constantly thinking “how far have I gone? how much further do I have to go?  how long have I been running?”  Plus, it is easier on my knees.  I’m still a beginning runner, and I’m hoping that as I build up endurance and speed, I’ll enjoy running outside more because I’ll be able to just “get into my zone.”  Until then, I’m running mostly on the treadmill with at least one outdoor run a week!

I also think it would help if I could a) listen to music while I ran outside and b) had a way to know my pace and how far I’ve gone while running outside, because that’s my favorite part of treadmill-running.

Unfortunately, I can’t run with my IPod because it has a hard disk and moving parts = bad fit for running.  I’m debating getting an IPod shuffle or some similar small MP3 player… any advice on what to get?

I’m hoping to get a Garmin or something somewhere down the line, but I don’t want to make that big of an investment until I know for sure I will use it a lot.

Any tips on how to make outdoor running more enjoyable for the beginning runner?

September 13, 2009 at 2:49 pm 2 comments


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