11/30 - Running Rocket

I hit my noon run today. 50 degrees in December, I'll take this running weather any time of the year!

It felt good to be back. My shin seems fine, but the 5 mile run was hard. Simply put, I'm not used to running. I think just about 3 months ago, I won a 50 mile race. Not any more. Other runners are telling me how quickly I'll come back - we'll just have to wait and see.

It is funny how the small things are noticed on the run. I was going over a wooden bridge - and sometime between the last time I ran and now, the city replaced some of the old boards on the bridge. The city has still not fixed the large gaping hole on the bike path - but maybe that is slated for next summer.

The 5 mile run was an easy run done in about 38 minutes. A little bit fast, but it didn't feel that fast.

After the run - I spent about 15 minutes doing some general strength training along with stretching. This is new to me - instead of running a mile or two longer, I now know the importance of a proper warm-up and cool down in order to keep me healthy and running for a long time.

For the general strength training - it was a pedestal routine. It goes something like this - all 8 to 10 reps:
1. prone hand stand, single leg raise
2. supine hand stand, single leg raise
3. prone elbow stand, single leg raise
4. supine elbow stand, single leg raise
5. lateral elbow stand, single leg raise
6. lateral hand stand, single leg raise (these are hard!)
7. prone flexed knee elbow stand, hip lift
8. supine flexed knee elbow stand, hip lift
9. crunch with low reach
10. crunch with low reach and twist

You can find a video about it here:



11/23 - Return to Running!!!

It has been a long time. Period.
After I picked up running 7 1/2 years ago, I haven't taken a break. Part of the reason for not taking a long break was worrying about my weight. Well, through this time period off, I really have learned about proper nutrition. I lost about 8 lbs while NOT running. I did this through making conscious decisions about what I was eating. Even when I was running, I wasn't getting the proper nutrition. My calorie imbalance was way too weighted toward fats and carbs, and not even close on the protein scale.

I've learned to be a smarter runner through this period of not running. Hmm...I guess sitting on the sidelines for bit does have some benefits??
WHY should I spend this much energy on running even when I'm not running???

Simply put, I love to run. There is nothing like it. Just like with many things in life, there is a certain amount of discipline that comes with doing what you love.
On the outside looking in, it may look easy to lace up shoes and go run. The fact is it is quite a bit of work. But when I'm on that trail, 30 miles into a race, I have the biggest smile on my face!

Okay - returning to run. Today, I started with 15 minutes outside! It was great! I worked quite a bit on my stride and hand position to open up my hips. I then completed the hour workout with 45 minutes on the elliptical.

As for supper last night - Here is what my beautiful (and unfortunately sick with a cold) wife made for Sunday night's dinner. This was recently in Runner's world. The chicken was yummy, the sauce was a bit salty (not my wife's doing, just the recipe in general). I added the 2 cups of mixed veggies along with some acorn squash.

Here is the link to the recipe: http://recipes.runnersworld.com/Recipe/crispy-parmesan-chicken.aspx

This is a "keeper" recipe. We'll use it again!

Oh yeah - I also did this on Sunday.....


Okay, posting about the pancakes from the Highland Grill made me hungry for those again. I recreated them last night. The pic is dark, but if I think the comparison between the two is good. I was pleased with the outcome.

Here is how I made them:

3/4 cup oat flour
3/4 cup old fashioned oats
1 cup skim milk
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 egg whites
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Directions: Heat milk (can use water) until hot, stir in oats and set aside. Beat egg whites into a stiff peaks with hand mixer, and set aside. Mix all the dry ingredients and stir in oatmeal/milk mixture. Fold in egg whites until mixture is well blended.

I cooked on a griddle at 375, brown both sides. This makes about 10-12 pancakes - a serving is 5-6 pancakes or half of the recipe.

For the toppings, last night I used:
1/2 banana
tablespoon unsalted peanuts
tablespoon craisins
sprinkle of homemade granola
1 serving of sugar free syrup

These were good!! Served with two scrabbled eggs made this a filling supper.

Nutrition information for the meal: 639 calories, 89 g carbs, 20g fat, 36 g protein. The toppings added a solid 150 calories, but they were worth it!

(5 pancakes were 313 calories, 49 carbs, 5 fat, 20 protein).

You could trim down the toppings if needed. Also, use better n'eggs instead of real eggs for the protein on the side and you can still have a 500 calorie meal.

I had a bigger supper because of spending 60 minutes spinning on the bike yesterday pretty hard. My calorie count for the day was around 2200. This even included a glass of milk and a chocolate chip cookie at the end of day (desert with the boys watching Colorado blow the upset against OK state.)

For the day, my calories came from the following - 35% protein, 42% carbs, 23% fat. My protein percentage is still a little high, but I'm not yet getting in a longer than 60 minute minute workout. When I start going above 60 minutes, I'll increase my total calories and begin to put those extra calories toward carbs - shooting for somewhere around a 50% carb, 25% protein, and 25% fat diet.


Jack Cakes

Simple said, these are the best pancakes ever. This is from the Highland Grill in St. Paul, MN. These are the "Jack Cakes". As stated in the menu "Three oatmeal pancakes topped with peanuts, house made granola, banana, blueberries, raisins and honey. Meets your daily requirement for everything." If I die and go to heaven, I hope St. Peter's cafe has these available.

My running is still not happening, however, I'm just a few days away from lacing the shoes up again. I'm looking forward to this.

However, I admit, I have become exactly what I never wanted to become, someone obsessed with running. When I started running, I enjoyed it for the fun of running, being outside. Along the way, I became more passionate about running and more serious.

Now, I live for running. Don't get me wrong, I live for my wife, kids, and family as well. I live for good friendships and great experiences. But I also live for running.

So somewhere along the way, I decided that I need to invest in my running to keep it enjoyable. First it was just the perfect shoes, then better gear, then challenging and races that show off great parts of the country. Is there more? Oh yes.

Then it became the running groups and running friends. It became that my sports doctor became my primary physician. Then I couldn't figure out how to plan/train for ultra runs; so I hired a running coach. I wanted to run longer, faster and maintain good healthy habits. Okay, I could use a nutritionist. I should probably work on my bio mechanics and injury prevention so my stress fracture doesn't come back and I can stay a healthy injury free runner for a long time. Enter my new friend, the physical therapist who evaluated my running stride and now wants to get a closer look at my bio mechanics.

Hmmm... is this still fun? You bet. All for the run of it.