Variety = Good

Hello hamstrings, quads, shoulders and triceps. This is code for saying I almost forgot what it felt like to train like an endurance athlete (and yes, I'm perfectly fine with that). You need a little variation in life. 

Anyway, this weekend I joined some friends for a long run also referred to as the Boston Simulator for its rolling hills near the end. While I opted to do 11 miles with my friend Katy who runs a similar pace, others did anywhere from 10 to 28 miles to fit their various training goals.

It was a rainy, laid back, chatty and hilly run in the country. While my butt and hamstrings hated it from mile 2 on, my soul loved every minute. 

Rat's nest brought to you by Oregon rain

That being said, I was surprised at how okay this long distance runner was with not having run a double digit run in... Months?! I was just happy I could hang in there for 11 miles. Now, I've got to continue working on the long distances (and hills) for a few upcoming races in April.

Ultimately, it's a good thing. I'm sure my body welcomed the break and mentally, I didn't mind not living and breathing by my mileage. 

I'm still strong from a lot of yoga, circuit workouts and shorter runs, but man I need to get back into the stretching and foam rolling habit! My legs are begging for mercy.

Loving my new Oiselle lesley running tights

Our paces for the run were:
8:17, 8:04, 8:17, 8:33, 8:13, 8:35, 9:11 (hill rolling fun begins), 9:29, 8:26, 8:44, 8:57* 
*I think my watch was lying here because when I stopped it, my current pace was a 7:48, so I think/hope the satellite connection was wonky.

Considering I hadn't run long and my hamstrings were extremely tight, my pace was pretty strong. Now I just need to work on stretching things out before my next long run. 

In the Kitchen
This weekend has also been new and fresh in terms of meals. I made not one, but two meals from scratch! First, I made a veggie and meat lasagna with an apple walnut green salad for dinner with my mom and the manfriend on Saturday. It was really good and we have leftovers for this coming week, which I love. 

Today I wanted to test out Emily's white bean and kale veggie soup. While I may never make any recipe that I pin to Pinterest, I often go back to my feedly reader and try out other bloggers' recipes that sound tasty. 

For this recipe I had most of the ingredients, but forgot to pick up vegetable broth. I got by with a little turkey broth and just added some other spices and water. I also opted not to buy parsnips and used a few sweet potatoes instead, because that's what Trader Joe's had yesterday when I went shopping.

Would you like some soup with your kale?

 Don't worry, it cooks down...

And then you get to the fun part of blending it all up and making a mess of your kitchen and yourself. I don't have an immersion blender so I just use a hand mixer and make a big ole mess. Sounds fun, eh?

Put on an apron before blending. And if you don't, don't say I didn't warn you.

I also shredded a little fresh Parmesan in there because we had some on hand. Plus, everything tastes better with cheese. To thin things out a bit, I added a bit of plain almond milk at the end.

The manfriend hasn't tried this yet, but I'll let you know what he thinks after dinner tonight. Edited to add: this soup is manfriend approved!

I rarely use kale, but I this is a nice way to incorporate it along with a few other veggies and beans. Nutritionally, I'd say this soup definitely packs a punch

Running Gear
In other news, I've ran my last pair of Brooks Adrenalines into the ground trying to make them last for just a biiit longer. I'm thinking about trying out the Merrell Ascend Glove Trail shoes. It's always tough to branch out and try a new shoe, but I'd love to find a new, somewhat lighter shoe for the trails. Currently, I'm using two older pairs of Montrails for trail runs, which are pretty bulky and have definitely seen a lot of mileage. We'll see...

What was your best meal this weekend (made or purchased)? 

Fitness goal for this week: foam roll 4x for at least 5 minutes and stretch for a few minutes immediately after each run. Here's to hoping that I'll actually do it because I'm telling you I will. ;)


missris said…
As I ramp it up for a spring half marathon I'm also in the "oh, I really need to stretch and foam roll more" camp. Oops!
Amber said…
I haven't been doing much for long runs either and I haven't been doing ANYTHING for trail running even though I have a 21 km trail race in 3 weeks! Eep. Hope all the strength training I've been doing really does pay off.

Glad to hear that soup was so good! I bookmarked it as something I need to make as soon as I saw it on her blog!

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