Blog-homeless (and my longest run to date)

Well, thanks everyone for liking my previous status update and checking out my new self hosted blog over at Brownie Runs. But if you’ve been over there, you know nothing works. Sigh. So frustrating.

I freelance in social media, which is a part of why I got into blogging. I enjoy writing and thought that chronicling my running journey would be fitting. Over the past few months, I’ve met several bloggers that have gone self hosted and monetized their blogs. I thought this might be a good idea, if anything to build relationships with my favorite brands. Switching has been a steep learning curve and frankly, not one I’m sure I can overcome. We will see, but I might just come back to this site. One of my favorite books, The Happiness Project, suggests sometimes to ‘ Abandon a Project’ when it is sucking away your happiness. Self hosting might become one of those things.

My 17 mile run last Sunday was a little tough. It was really, really long. This is the longest run I have ever accomplished and with my previous piriformis injury that I was still overcoming, I had mentally prepared myself that come hell or high water I would complete this. I knew not completing it would be a severe setback mentally in my training. So I showed up at  5 am and began running with my team. One of my friends has also been battling a hip issue and we have both fallen back from the team in previous runs to take it easy. I knew today was not one of those days I could do that. When we got to mile 10 ( our second water stop), we had all discussed not lingering at the water stops to continue moving along. I got my water and kept walking. It turns out some of our team started falling behind at that point. But I stuck it out and kept my 14 min pace. At our 13 mile, our turn around point ( we had done a short out and back on the same road earlier), I saw my friend had fallen behind and was hurting pretty badly. I wasn’t feeling so hot either but I knew if I slowed down or took extra walking breaks, I’d never finish. I had to leave her and continue with my pace. Our team ended up breaking up into 3 groups. I stuck with teammates Heather and Jim, who have been married for quite a while and have kids about my age. Turns out they’ve lived all over the world while serving our nation and they had been on a mission trip to the town I grew up in. It was nice chatting with people I usually don’t get to talk to, and we pushed each other to complete the mileage. 

I could not believe my watch when I finally completed my run. Most of the team had completed 14 miles, but since I am training for an earlier race, I am always adding extra mileage. Nearly 4 hours later, I finished. 

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It feels awesome. I came home and soaked in an ice bath. Miraculously I felt pretty good the following day. I’ve taken it easy this last week, and I think that has helped my healing. This week I have 20 miles. 

My Galloway team also took the opportunity to sign up for a virtual half marathon to benefit Marathon High. Marathon High is a charity that coaches kids to walk/run a half marathon and builds confidence and self esteem along the way. Many of these kids are disadvantaged, and running truly becomes not only an outlet, but something they can succeed and take pride in.  They hoped to get 250 runners and ended up with many more than that across 16 states and 2 countries. Can you imagine being a kid in the program and having that kind of support? Awesome. Here are the pics of me and my team members who took part in this fundraiser. 

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How’s your training coming along?

Have you ever ran for a charity?

Have you tried going self-hosted and hit a road block?

 

I’ve moved! Please follow my new blog!

Hi everyone! If you’ve been following me on Correle Martha, welcome to my new home on Brownie Runs! I’ve enjoyed running and blogging so much that I have switched to a self-hosted WordPress site. Please go to www.brownieruns.com to continue following my journey!

I am new to the wordpress creation world and there is a steep learning curve. So be patient while I switch over all my pages and menus and figure out what the heck I’m doing.

Tomorrow I will blog about my 17 mile run last week and the upcoming 49 days before the marathon!

Hope you’ll join me!

Week 9: A rocket launch, speed work and a trip to India!

Whew what a week! I had a slacker running week, running paltry 12 miles this week. It was a recovery week after our long run and I did my recovery week proud.

I did start the week with a little of a hard workout. During the hot afternoon sun. I was basically too lazy to get my butt up on Tuesday morning to run, so I punished myself and went running with my husband on Tuesday afternoon. I’ve started doing some interval running to help increase my speed. I looked up what my 400m pace should be, based on my new one mile time, and I came up with a 2:15 goal. I challenged myself to do 10x400m, with walk breaks anywhere between 1 min- 2:15. My first few intervals were energizing. At about the 4th interval, I started to slow down a bit, questioning whether I would finish the workout. I always try to make a deal with myself, like ” Well, 8 wouldn’t be so bad right?”. Then I get to 8 and think I would feel awful for not finishing the workout. It was definitely challenging, but none of my intervals were more than 2:25, and I felt accomplished when I finished. And dead tired and hungry.

On Wednesday, my friend Mel and I did our regular Wednesday run of about 3 miles. I’ve really enjoyed running with her, I know she can run faster but she keeps pace with me. I think she mostly does it for the beer we have afterwards. 

We had one beer then rushed to the beach (where we both live) to watch the rocket launch. 5 years ago, my husband and I moved from Denver to Cocoa Beach due to my his job. He works as an engineer for a company that launches these huge rockets, mostly carrying secret government payloads and satellites to make our everyday lives better. He wanted to be on the front lines, so we moved here! Well the Delta IV Heavy rocket is the one he primarily works on and this rocket usually carries important payloads, since the 4 boosters get it out into deep space. This was carrying a government satellite to enhance communications for our troops!

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Courtesy of: United Launch Alliance

It also makes the most sound out all the rockets.  The video is a little long, but here it is. Watching a rocket launch over the ocean at dusk is one of the experiences that makes me happy to live in Florida. At around 1:35, what sounds like a strong gust of wind is actually rocket breaking the sound barrier.

I slacked off on Thursday (and Friday and Saturday). I felt a little mentally drained. Working 2 jobs has caught up to me and I just had little energy. So Jerry and I spent the weekend doing some fun things. 

I’ve wanted to go to India for a long, long time. We had planned to go this coming year, but I don’t think it will be possible just yet. So we settled for the next best thing: IndiaFest! The Festival was small, but the food was phenomenal. I had this potato based dal, and we ordered a vegetarian plate with all kinds of curries. Not as good as a vacation in India but it will do. 

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I finished the week with an easy 6 mile run on my own (my team was taking an off week) and I greatly missed running with them. Running Marine Corps Marathon without them will be pretty challenging. I haven’t worked on my mental preparation as much as I need to and it was obvious this Sunday.  I did manage to snap this amazing picture of the sunrise though!

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We’ll be running 14.5 miles next week!

What is your exotic dream vacation?

Week 7 and Vegan Crab Cakes with a vengance

Last week, our group met up and did an easy 6 mile run. This Sunday we have out ‘Magic Mile’ time trial.  This is one of the most important tenets of the Galloway program. Basically, this not only predicts race day performance, but also helps figure out what pace to keep during shorter races and training. One of the first conditions of the accuracy is that the weather is 60 degree or lower. Well, gee, let me wait until January, Jeff!

Here is how Jeff Galloway describes on his site how to do the Magic Mile

1. warm up with a slow one mile run
2. do a few acceleration-gliders (Video here )
3. pace yourself as even as possible on each quarter mile
4. run about as hard as you could run for one mile–but no puking! (finish feeling that you couldn’t have run more than a football field at the same pace)
5. keep walking after the time trial for 5 minutes, and jog a slow 1-6 miles, as needed for the mileage for that day

When we first did them about a month ago, I thought the acceleration gliders were just wasting energy. I was wrong! This did make me run a bit faster, since the fast twitch muscles in my legs were warmed up. I ran a 9:59 last month, which was quite disappointing, as my best pace for a 5k last year was at 9:30.

So on Tuesday I went to the Rockledge High School track.

rockledge track Notice there is no fence around this track. I had been eyeing this for a while and I finally got the courage to sneak in. There was only one other guy running and he didn’t look like he went to the school, so i set down my water bottle and started one loop of acceleration gliders. I then reset my garmin and made my water bottle my marker, and off I went running one mile! I kept a comfortably hard pace throughout, slowing down to a brisk jog when i got tired, but I did not walk. During the last lap, I felt so energized! Then some track kids started showing up and looking at me weird, so I had to run even faster! When I was done, I looked at my watch and nearly fell out of my…..track?  8:56 mile! That is the fastest I have ever ran a mile in. I jogged myself out of the track and onto the familiar River Road, which is only a few blocks away, completing 3 miles. I’m just ecstatic, and I hope I can repeat my performance on Sunday. We will see.

This week I made these delicious ‘Chesapeake Tempeh Crabcakes‘ from Post Punk Kitchen. I had bought some tempeh a few weeks ago and this sounded so delicious. I paired it with The Sexy Vegan’s ‘ New England Blam Chowder’, which is phenomenal, but we’ll stick to the crabcakes for time’s sake.  So why are they ‘crabcakes with a vengance’? Well because, the oil splattered on my arm and gave me some nice burns. They’re still healing and it’s nearly been a week. So watch out for those oil splatters. This looks like a lot of work/ingredients, but believe me, it’s not compared to how delicious these taste! Enjoy!

crab cakes

For the cakes:
8 ounces tempeh
1 cup water
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 bay leaf

3 tablespoons Vegenaisse
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon hot sauce ( I used Tabasco)
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/4 cup very finely chopped red bell pepper
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspooon salt
fresh black pepper
1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs, plus extra for dredging
Optional: 1 finely chopped nori sheet or 1 tablespoon kelp granules (if you like a little fishiness)

Oil for pan frying

For the remoulade:
2 tablespoons Vegenaise
1 tablespoon whole grain mustard  (stone ground dijon works, too)
1 tablespoon hot sauce
2 teaspoons capers (try not to get too much brine)

Lemon wedges for serving

First we’re going to steam the tempeh to get the bitterness out and also to infuse some flavor with the soy sauce. Crumble the tempeh into a saucier or small pan in little bits. Add the water, soy sauce, oil and bay leaf. The tempeh won’t be fully submerged, but that’s fine. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, let boil for 12 to 15 minutes, until most of the water has evaporated. Stir once during boiling.

Transfer contents to a mixing bowl, remove bay leaf, and mash with a fork. Let cool for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to hasten the cooling process. Make sure the tempeh is barely warm before you proceed, or the cakes may fall apart when you cook them. Add the mayo, mustard, hot sauce, vinegar, chopped bell pepper, spices salt and pepper, and mix well. Add the bread crumbs and nori and use your hands to incorporate.

Once you are ready to form the cakes, preheat a thin layer of oil in a heavy bottomed non-stick skillet (cast iron is great) over medium heat. Pour a few tablespoons of panko into a bowl. Scoop a little less than 1/4 cup batter into your hands and form into a ball. Flatten between your palms and then roll the sides gently with your hands cupped to smooth them. You should have ten 2 1/2 to 3- inch patties. I do them in batches of five. Press them into the panko to lightly coat. They don’t need to be thoroughly covered, just a little bit for some texture.

Fry a batch of five cakes for 4 minutes on one side and flip when dark golden brown. Fry for 2 minutes on the other side and transfer to a paper towel or paper bag to drain. Do your second batch and in the meantime make your remoulade by mixing all the ingredients together in a bowl.

Serve with lemon wedges.

Week 5 and 6 Marathon Training: I wish I could blog while running!

So I know no one was waiting on baited breath for my weekly marathon training updates, but I genuinely felt like a slacker for not having time to update my blog. Alas, here I am now.

Week 5 was a first for many things. On Wednesday, I did my first double workout. In the morning I did a short 2 mile run and came back home and did yoga. I highly encourage you to check out Do Yoga With Me, a free online yoga video site. I have been doing yoga from this site for my entire year of running, and I really think I have avoided injury due to practicing yoga. Check out the specific ‘ Yoga for Runners’ videos. I like the David Procyshyn Yoga for Hips, Hamstrings and Back . I had frequent IT Band issues especially when I was only running instead of run/walking and this helped a lot. I also do the Injury Prevention after runs and do the Pilates videos during cross training days. I get more out of doing yoga in my own house, as I am not under pressure or anybody else’s ‘labels’ as when practicing yoga with a group. Try it out!

In the afternoon I ran with my usual group and did 3 miles. This has become my ‘speed’ workout if you may. I was leading the group of two other ladies and I was pressured to keep a faster pace. I am convinced that training with a group at least for a portion of your training is important. Also, it helps that this is the course for the Space Coast Marathon  which I will run in December. It really is a beautiful course.

River Road in Cocoa, FL

The real doozy came on Sunday Morning. Training run: 13.1 Miles. Woah! My morning started by getting up at 4:00 am, to be running at 4:45 am. Luckily, I’m not fully awake yet so the first 5.5 miles were done by ‘sleep-running’.

I was really excited to see my final time though. My half marathon in Miami was very challenging and I was not methodical about my run/walk intervals. At this race, I finished in 2:37. On this training run, running a much slower pace and taking plenty of breaks (half of the distance was done at 2:1 intervals, the other at 30 sec:30 sec), I was only 20 minutes slower. And I felt amazing afterwards, with very little effort.

13.1

Week 6 was much more a rest week for me. My legs were a little tired on Monday and Tuesday, so I proceeded with my Wednesday run, pushing to 4 miles. I did 3 miles on Friday, the first with my new Ultimate Direction Strider Belt. I wasn’t pleased at all the first time I wore it, but my running store gave me a few tips, so I’ll refrain from a review right now.  Yesterday was an uber simple 6 miler with a 30:30 interval at a near 14 minute pace.

My spirits are higher than ever though, and I am feeling awesome about my training. At least until I start doing training runs in the 20’s.

What is the one thing about running that still kind of scares you?

Week 2 Marathon Training and Thai Peanut Noodles

Yesterday, I had my 2nd marathon training session. Through the Jeff Galloway training program, we are responsible for two 30 minute runs during the week then come together on Sundays to build mileage. I think that’s not enough, since for my first half marathon, I was running 4-5 days a week. 

We only had 4 miles to do yesterday, and we continue with the 1:1 intervals (1 minute walk, 1 minute run). They would have been torturous had it not been for the company of these women. One of my friends, MJ, whom I used to work with, is also training for the marathon. We run similar paces and it is our first marathon. I hadn’t talked to her in a while, so the 4 miles let us catch up. We all joked when we did 20 milers, we could all tell our life stories. MJ may not be in the happiest of places right now, but she’s a super strong woman that I have never seen play the ‘victim’. I’m enjoying running with her. The 4 miles went by in a breeze. Next week, we do 5 miles, with the Magic Mile thrown in (more about that next week).

So that takes me up to 8:00 am. Seriously. We got back home, did some yoga, then our friends texted us to go to the beach. Did I mention I live 3 blocks from the beach?  It’s heaven.

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After the sun became unbearable, we I came home and made these Thai Peanut Noodles. the recipe is from Cooking Light, a magazine I subscribe to (at least for the following month). I started my subscription before I went vegetarian, and it’s a shame they don’t put more vegetarian recipes because I truly enjoy their magazine. Anyhow I veganized these by subing tofu for chicken and it was really tasty. It says it’s a soup, but it turned out like a saucy noodle dish for me. The original recipe is here http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/peanut-chicken-noodle-soup-50400000128102/

but here is my adaptation

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Thai Peanut Noodles

  • 14 ounces uncooked fresh udon noodles
  • 1/2 cup Better than Bouillon Chicken Flavored Stock (vegan)
  • 3 tablespoons of chunky or smooth peanut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (13.5-ounce) can light coconut milk
  • 1 container of tofu, drained and cubed
  • 1/2 head Napa cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 small serrano chile, thinly sliced
  • Sriracha to taste

Preparation

  1. Cook noodles according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 2 cups cooking liquid.
  2. Heat stock and next 4 ingredients in a large pan over medium-low heat. Add tofu and let simmer for a few minutes.
  3. Add cooking liquid, serrano,noodles and cabbage; cook 2 minutes or until cabbage wilts. Sprinkle with cilantro; serve with Sriracha.

My husband usually doesn’t like anything with an Asian flavor, but he really liked these noodles! They were the perfect after-workout meal too: tofu for protein, noodles for carbs, sriracha for all the other important stuff. Haha! I really like the stuff! 

This put us right to napping, then I skyped with my dad to wish him a Happy Father’s Day. The day ended with Mad Men, as all Sundays do. 

Sunday is quickly becoming my favorite day of the week.

What’s your favorite thing to eat after long runs?