Sunday, November 21, 2010

Darn You Miley Cyrus

I didn't even get through my whole running list - so that's good - I won't have to add a whole lot more songs - maybe mix them up better or something. I love running in Philadelphia - the weather is so amazing - it's almost the end of November and it is the equivalent to local September day for me. The miles went by easier than they did last year or so I thought - in the end I am pretty sure I didn't beat my Victoria time - I had some knee strain, serious back pain (note to self getting adjusted the day before you sit for 12 hours and then try and run 24 hours after that - is a REALLY stupid and painful idea). I seemed to have finished with only a blister on the bottom of the toe next to the baby toe on my left foot.

I have lots I want to say about Philadelphia but right now my brain is a little slow. Yay for calorie burns that turn you senseless. The point I wanted to get at is I had Miley Cyrus' The Climb is on my playlist. At Mile 10-11 it came on and I just about broke down crying there - yes it's the hormones and the stress but at that time it was the great message - it isn't about the win or lose it is about the journey - that itself makes you who you are each time you cross the finish line.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Have You Ever

Sung along to a song over and over and then in the middle of writing a paper realized that the lyrics were actually profound?

Happiness hit her like a train on a track
Coming towards her stuck still no turning back
She hid around corners and she hid under beds /
She killed it with kisses and from it she fled /
With every bubble she sank with a drink /
And washed it away down the kitchen sink.

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
The horses are comin' so you better run

Run fast for your mother; run fast for your father /
Run for your children all your sisters and brothers /
Leave all your love and your longing behind.
You can't carry it with you / if you want to survive

The dog days are over /
The dog days are done /
Can you hear the horses/
'Cause here they come ... Florence and the Machine - Dog Days Are Over

I leave my personal life for the most part off this blog for long and complex reasons but I will say that I started running for a lot of the same reasons people pick up exercise. It is a daily act of exorcism of all that we have or want to leave behind so that we can run freer in our present and future life. So run because with each step those days are further behind you.

Friday, November 12, 2010

An iTunes Monster Has Been Created

I was initially fearful of the process, crazy I know but I don't really like technology - anyways not the point - I purchased the large portion of my running list and some others and not some of the below - one that I added when I realized that I LOVE it and I haven't become of sick of it, and hopefully I can pace myself because I might listen to it long enough to make myself sick:

PS Check out the actually music video it's really well Florence esque

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


I have been very tardy and will likely continue to be very tardy for a while as I am in school, working full time and training pretty continuously since Houston is coming and apparently a few other marathons too...

But so I don't completely ignore you - my song list for Philly:

· One Step at a Time - Jordin Sparks
· Broken Glass - Annie Lennox
· Circus – Britney Spears
· Toxic - Britney Spears
· Stronger - Christina Aguilera
· Ain’t No Man – Christina Aguilera
· Not Afraid - Eminem
· Lose Yourself - Eminem
· Eye of The Tiger - Survivor - I am running the home of Rocky
· Settlin' - Sugarland
· Last Name – Carrie Underwood
· Undo It - Carrie Underwood
· Need Somebody - Kings of Leon
· Playboy - Candy Coated Killahz
· Release Me - Agnes
· The Climb - Miley Cyrus
· The Pretender - Foo Fighters
· Universal Mind Control - Common
· Bleed it Out – Linkin Park
· What I've Done – Linkin Park
· Faint - Linkin Park
· Survivor - Destiny's Child
· SOS - Rihanna
· Don't Stop the Music – Rihanna
· Shut Up - BEP
· Pump It – Black Eye Peas
· Into the Rush – Aly and Aj
· Life is a Highway – Tom Cochrane
· Life in the Fast Lane – The Eagles
· Burn it to the Ground - Nickelback
· Stronger – Kanye West
· American Boy - Kanye West/Estelle
· Take it Off (faster good beat) – Kesha
· When Love Takes Over – Kelly Rowland
· Man Eater – Nelly Furtado
· Just Wanna Dance – Whitney Houston
· Hot and Cold – Katy Perry
· Pink
· This Ain’t a Scene – Fall Out Boy
· Just Dance – Fall Out Boy

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

My Apologies

I have fallen of the face of the Earth - I was sick for a while, busy with work and school... I haven't been able to blog from work like I usually do. I will try to be better. I will let you know how the training has been going. I have started doing yoga again. I normally resist yoga when I'm a little squidgy in places - because somehow having to bend and bind around your Beyonce like booty is not like running in a what is effectively a mini skirt in pouring rain and wind. Yes the later should be more uncomfortable but I digress. I have had problems in the past with plantar fascititis and snapping hip syndrome (which apparently is only a dancer's injury - oh bless my weird body) and the Runner's World insistence on core stability has me back at yoga.

So lessons learned:

1. Yoga - I recommend it - I found that my core class is really good for me on my rest day. I have done some of an advanced Hatha class per my teacher's suggestion that I challenge myself. Too much challenge. I (and possibly you) are training for a race not a better shoulder stand or what have you. I will definitely keep this one up and I might up my yoga in the summer when I normally decrease my mileage because of the damn heat.

2. Diet - Being GF/DF and well let's face it S Reduced is challenging - my health in general has been really challenging to the point where this might be the last racing year for a while. I am finding that I am still very immune compromised and my acupuncturist can't seem to tell me more than the specialists - they know my body isn't happy, they just don't know why. Acupuncturist says it's heat in my liver and kidneys and the Immunologist just shrugs his shoulders - apparently my body is upset but what is causing it is anyone's guess. Sweet.

3. Persistence - find joy in the little victories and acknowledge when you've set the challenge too high.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Spring Marathon

I am very tempted to sign up for the Napa Valley Marathon and then see who I can con into coming with me or figuring on how I can get there. I do need a spring marathon as the local marathon is too late in the season.... so on that note have a look at the beauty of Napa.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Music Monday

I can't believe I forgot the Black Eye Peas so far - well on that note there is a whole lot that I like of their music but from the last album, not the most recent one:

Don't Lie and Shut Up are also great options!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Food Friday

I recently featured this recipe on my food blog, but I feel that it also has a place here. The large majority of people have a sweet tooth and while mine leans more towards chocolate, during the months of amazing local (and organic) fruit I feel that it would be more than a shame to pass on the fruits:

Peaches are in season, and as such I feel compelled to bake with them. There is no need to drown them in batter, in cakes and muffins. I believe a crisp is about the best thing to eat after a meal, sweet wise.

For the following I used:
4 peeled and sliced peaches
1/4 cup of cane sugar
1T of cornstarch or alternative thickener
1 tsp each ground ginger and cinnamon - mace would also be a good addition here
slight pinch of salt
1tsp vanilla.

Mix the dry ingredients together and then pour the vanilla on your dirty hands and mix in. If you have vanilla sugar or powdered vanilla (Dr Oetker I believe sells something of the sort), then try that.

Options to add: chopped crystallized ginger, mango or blackberries to the fruit portion

Top with gingersnap crumbs* (1/2 cup) combined with 1/4-1/2 cup of GF flour or oats - or a mix there of. I used 1/2T of canola, you could use butter or goat milk to create crumbs. Top the fruit with the crumb mixture.

Bake at 350 for 20-40 minutes depending on your oven, the vessel it is baked in etc.


* GF version of VWAV Ginger Snaps - add 1tsp xantham gum and 1/3 cup chopped crystallized ginger, bake, cool and then pulse in a food processor or place in a ziploc bag and beat out all your frustrations with a rolling pin or cast iron pot. Store the unused portion in the freezer. If you're wondering why the crumbs - well if you are testing cookies and want to ensure you won't sit down and eat 5 in one night while reading, grinding them up makes that a heck of a lot more difficult.

Alternative vegan version of Ginger Snaps is here

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Gear Review

I am aware that it is "Website Wednesday" but since it's my blog I can detour the schedule. I purchased two new running skirts a few weeks ago in an attempt to find a new running skirt that wasn't too short, to see-through or too "sticky."

I will preface my review by stating that I am a 5'5 "pear" shaped woman - so if you are taller or short or apple or whatever you may or may not find that the same problems or successes occur.

1. Lucy brand - I purchased in desperation and wore for the Philadelphia Marathon over my tights. It worked. It doesn't really work for day to day running, the compression shorts are not all that "compression like" but the bigger issue is that the short fabric and the skirt fabric are the same stretchy/cotton like material. As such there is a lot of ride up. Grade: C (for the price I paid B-/B)

2. New Balance - There are a lot of great options - the side pocket for your IPOD or debit card, the ICE strip. My issue is the same as the Lucy, you can't put the same cotton like fabric on the short and the skirt. Even worse, the white color. It is shockingly transparent. I will say that I will still use the skirt in the winter as a layer over my tights. At that point I won't be worried about pulling it down or what can be seen through the back. Grade: C

3. Nike "Personal Best"(straight skirt): I purchased the "mini" skirt format of their running skirt last year in Portland. I hated it right away when I started to run in it. Standing it's great, running - well it has a tendency to bunch above the shorts, which defeats the whole purpose. Grade: F (for the price I paid a D, still not a passing grade)

4. Adidas "Supernova": I have worn this skirt consistently - it has it's faults, the shorts or are more less useless compression wise - but the skirt does what a skirt should - flow. It is made entirely of "performance" fabric so it's great in the rain too. My only concern is it is about 2 inches too short for my liking and a low rise waist band. In theory the low rise is great, but it's a little too low rise for my liking. Grade: B+

5. Saucony "Go Girl": I appreciate the higher waist, though it is possibly too high. The light weight skirt makes the issue regarding ride up disappear. My only complaint is the pleating and almost bubble skirt like format isn't that flattering around the waist, though in the end this is really minor considering that it will be covered most of the year. I will say pockets please!! Grade: B+ with pockets like NB's it would an A.

6. Nike "New Adventure": It's a skirt and short hybrid, in that the sides are structured like a short. I like the loose skirt idea - the flow is good. The pockets are an issue though. They have a large one in back that fits an IPod just fine, but I've learned that keys that go into these kinds of pockets always disappear - this is have learned the very hard way. Grade: B+ the rise is great, the pockets fine but the compression shorts ride up. Post script this is my favorite now I discovered the ipod pocket and well we have a winner, high enough and pocketed enough - sure it's short but heck I know shorts alone would still show more - A.

Images in order of review (L to R then top to bottom):

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dear New Balance

I love your 769 shoes. I love them with a passion that I do not think you understand, because if you did, you would not have eliminated them. I am aware that you are moving forward, providing the market with new shoes, more colors, more gadgets and gizmo's. That is all fine and good when those new models work for people. They probably work for many people, but they do not work for me. I have tried every other model that can be recommend for me both in stability and neutral cushioning and both have either been not enough or too much for my feet. As a result I have had a flare up in my plantar fasciitis for the first time in 4 years in my attempt to find a replacement. This is not acceptable. I have worked too long and hard and had too many specialists appointments to have a flare up because of a shoe change.

I will say thankfully I have managed to find two pairs online. These two pairs will make a total of 6 pairs of 769's I have purchased. I love New Balance shoes, but if I cannot find a suitable replacement after I am finished with these pairs, I will be looking elsewhere.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Music Monday

TOITB recommend last week that we check out Vampire Weekend - unfortunately I cannot embed their song, but you can check it out here

Or you can also consider:

Saturday, August 21, 2010


There is a local fitness "hot spot" called the Grind, which has released t-shirts much like this one. I think they are fabulous within the tiny microcosom of our city, but I don't think I'm going to travel anywhere with this t-shirt... eek. However, that being said often the swag is one of the reasons I do the crazy things I do, or boink,* one such swag item is the Napa Valley marathon duffle bag. It actually might be enough to convince N to run her one and only marathon. I figure if she can't honor her 10 year old promise to me to run a marathon, she might be swayed by pretty things. What girl isn't?

*runner lingo for busting your guts

Friday, August 20, 2010


I am not really a fan of the grain but I am desperately trying since millet and I aren't always friends. The good news is quinoa can be easily cooked in the rice cooker. Just rinse as per usual instructions, and then the standard 2 to 1 ratio.

After my quinoa was cooked, I refrigerated it and used it in the defacto bean salad -that recipe again:

1 can of white beans rinsed
1/2 a large fennel bulb, thinly sliced
2T red onion minced
Italian parsley finely chopped
1 cup cucumber diced
white wine or apple cider vinegar
olive oil
salt, pepper
and a little agave - like my salad sour and sweet and I use very little oil

Mix and add 1/2 the prepared quinoa. Goes great with barbequed salmon

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Website Wednesday!

I am putting the shout for the following info in regards to the Houston Marathon (yay I got in!):

1. Have you taken the rapid transit line in Seattle to the Airport - if so how is it? I am flying out of Seatac but coming in from out of town.

2. Hotels in downtown Houston - do you have any recommendations - right now TripAdvisor and Expedia are telling me conflicting info about the quality of the hotels. I am looking at ONLY downtown hotels, I have to be able to walk to the start line and back to the hotel.

3. Food in Houston - I know my GF, DF, SF diet is annoying - but all I need to do is feed myself three meals of which ethnic food is the easiest to adapt the above... but will try anything. I do know that there is no Whole Foods in downtown Houston which is sad but not unexpected, but if you have the inside track to any other Health Food stores downtown that would be great so I don't have to fly with my Almond milk

Of course today's website is the HOUSTON MARATHON

Monday, August 16, 2010

Music Monday

Again, it's all about the beat.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Food Friday

I think we all have sweet tooth's I know I do. So given that - I have a suggestion for a dessert that can well be eaten at any time, and if you were my father you would eat it at every meal, as the meal.

For a 8x11 pan (1 1/2 inch deep)

5 large peaches peeled and sliced
1 pint (2 cups) of blackberries

Toss in 1/4 cup of sugar (or less) and 1/2 - 1T of cornstarch (depends on juiciness of your peaches)

Add 1-3T of diced crystallized ginger

Top with:

1 small box of gingersnaps ground up in a food processor or beaten with a pot while in a ziploc. (I used Mary's Gone Crackers - you need about 1/2 of the box or go for the whole amount)

1/4 cup cold butter - I used goat milk butter - I really prefer it's consistency and flavour - the fat content makes it a different substance.

Sprinkle of GF flour mix and sugar - I did this solely on flavour

Combine crumbles, butter and flour/sugar and crumbles over the fruit and bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Note you can add more fruit or less topping - remember you are the one in the kitchen, not me.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Website Wednesday

I mentioned last week that I was going to post some "Whole Food" websites for some ideas.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Music Monday

I must confess despite the negative content, I don't think there is better running music than Eminem, maybe it gives me a channel for all the negative thoughts that come when you run - like I can't make it up the hill or the next mile or whatever...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Food Friday

Whole Foods - not the store but the concept, is something I think we all need to draw our attention towards. I know the tendency is to believe that we don't have enough time or the ability to do __ or even cook. I would like you to consider challenging that - in the next few weeks I am going to be putting up some new "whole food" focused website to encourage new ideas.

But in the meantime I want to post a recipe that has become a favourite around these parts:

Chickpea Tacos (Modified from Vegan Dad)
1 can rinsed chickpeas
1/2 onion large dice
dried oregano
chili powder
1-2 T canola oil

The amounts of the seasoning is up to you - ratios are up to you - I prefer more cumin and cinnamon but I know that's not a traditional taco flavor. Mix the spices with the diced onion and chickpeas, drizzle with oil. Place on a foil or parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 400 for 15 minutes or until the onions soften and the chickpeas toast. The longer it is baked for the crispier and chewier the resultant texture.

I usually top mine with the regular taco toppings or a red cabbage slaw.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Website Wednesday

I hesitate to recommend this website, not because I think that the product isn't fabulous, or that their free shipping isn't a brilliant idea. I hesitate because it's so popular around these parts that it is rarely seen as a legitimate source for running gear. It is though - especially as they have expanded their running line and have an eye for the most part on the wet coast's weather.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Music Monday

I tried to find the "official" video but alas it is elusive apparently, but this mix is really good, I like the beat. I am aware it's really popular - I promise to dig through some archives to find some more "universal" running classics or hidden jems. Apologies for Music Monday coming on Tuesday - it was a holiday weekend around these parts

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Back on Schedule

The heat around these parts is killing my running schedule, so is my class and work schedule for that matter. But I do hope to get back on schedule and that includes regularly posting here too..., Monday - Music, Wednesday - Websites/Info and Friday - Fun Facts. Friday was "Food Friday" but I am blogging food regularly on my Gluten Free/Dairy Free/Soy Free site. So given that I will be adding info about travel, race discounts etc along with generally updating my progress - which will include fun events - like hills and speed work!


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

And so it begins...

I have registered for the 1/2 marathon in Philadelphia, and got in the lottery for Houston for the full - so thus the training has officially started. On that note, a note to self, avoid listening to Brittney Spears songs lest you actually stop running to break out into dance.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


I requested a BOSU for Christmas - and you might think that is completely crazy but I have to say it is probably more used that my yoga mat that is the same price. I have found that especially since I ditched my gym membership for more pavement time.

Now whether you own a BOSU or have access to one check out these exercises, a large medicine ball could be substituted for many of these.
One that isn't demonstrated on the above series of videos is actually one of my favorites seen below:

Note that I prefer to use to BOSU flipped over when I do this version as I find the softer surface when it is positioned as below strains my wrist.

But hell why stop the challenges there just Google or YouTube BOSU and you'll have enough to keep you crazy for months and months..

Friday, June 4, 2010

Hello There!

So I am back at it, SLOWLY, but surely and here is my new goal - the Seattle Marathon, while I would love to run dozens of races before this one, and maybe how about not running in the Pacific Northwest in November but alas, such is life. I know that I need to give myself the full 16 weeks, if not longer but at this point I am slowly getting up to the base miles for the 16 week training schedule which means if we all do some of our GRE required math I will have until the beginning of August to really get the base miles under my belt. What am I getting at? Well I would like to know that come August that 6 miles is a comfortable aka easier run for me, and that maybe I will have already tried out a 10 miler by then too... You might say well doesn't that defeat the point of a training schedule. Maybe it might, this time I am going to be doing a different schedule - the one in Bart Yasso's book to be exact and I'm going to be running a really hilly course, so much so that the Vegas Marathon a week later looks REALLY appealing and that might just happen instead. My goal is to do it in 4:30. A big challenge, but I might just be able to twist a few arms to join me so we'll see.

All that being said I believe that I should leave you with some music to run to:

This song came on the radio this week at work and I was surprised that I hadn't put up any of their songs - thankfully that issue has been rectified

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Finding Grace in Running

Starting to run after months of being on my ass or back feeling horrible, is like starting running as an obese adult with no history of cardiovascular activity - it's hard. It might even be harder because I know what it used to feel like. I am starting over from the beginning.

In starting over, I've decided to make changes. I am becoming devoted to my runs rather than their mileage or times. I personally feel that this is the best way for me to make baby steps towards building up my mileage without the stress of not succeeding or feeling I need to push, push, push. I am aware that I can easily get back to where I was if I am determined to run myself into the ground.

As such I have started to cherish the small victories, small changes - I can run up the last hill in my run without feeling like I'm going to die half way up. I run more these days and walk less. The mileage is exactly the same - 3 miles. That is it, no less and some days a little more. I have decided to follow the Marathon training guide which is Run - TWTh Sat and Sun, off on Mondays and Fridays - but since my Tuesday's are not free my schedule is WTh, SatSunMon. The benefits right now of only doing 3 miles are:

1. It's short - not overly taxing
2. Because it's short I can cross train
3. It's about the process not about the speed - I measure my runs now on how I feel.

3 miles might seem small but 26.2 isn't really a whole lot longer... in that when you start the race it's about chipping away at that total - I just have to chip away at it 8.5ish times over.

But in the end that's not the point - grace for myself is - I get out there and I feel what my body is doing - good or bad, it's a run and it's a step back towards health.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

So What's Been Happening?

Well this blog has been neglected because quite simply I can't run.

I love running, I get weepy at the sight of my Runner's World.

Running also makes me cry because I'm sick. I'm not deathly sick, but I am fatigued out of my gourd for lack of a better word - covered in hives, eczema and in general failing apart. So the running is on hold until I am better - in the meantime you are free to join the food and life journey to wellness at

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Website Wednesday

So this sort of fits in with Food Friday, but since I plan on actually posting a recipe on Friday, I am offering you this lovely website, the PPK blog aka The Post Punk Kitchen. The PPK is a vegan blog which offers a wide variety of vegan/children/non-vegan/gluten free friendly recipes. I really encourage you to have a look at the recipes:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I'm Back I Promise

Sorry for my delinquency, but we are back on schedule I promise, I really promise. Note I am aware IMEEM took away all our beautiful music when it was co-oped by Myspace - so we'll have to fix that too in time.

So now that we are back on schedule, let me inform you of the schedule.

Running Group Schedule is as follows:

Date:Wednesday's - starting Feb 3/10
Time: 6:30-6:40 (depart at 6:40 sharp) - 7:40 (approx)
Where: Main Street/Chinatown Skytrain
During the weeks of Feb 17-March 3 - we will meet at Broadway and Victoria - one block East from Commercial.

Date: Saturday's - starting Feb 6/10
Time: 8:30am (8:35 sharp we leave)
Where: Meet at Burrard Station on the corner across from the Bank of Montreal.
The Olympics shouldn't affect this group - but if it does we'll figure something else out. I know the time seems early but the routes downtown get clogged if you aren't out there early

Helpful Hints/Guidelines:

1. Avoid cotton - while it's great for mitts and in blends for your socks, cotton loves moisture and so between your sweat and the inevitably moist weather you're going to end up wet, cold, chaffing and well really really not happy.

2. You do not need to spend $$$. I qualify this with #3, see below. Basic technically/workout/gym/Lululemon esque clothing works - as long as you feel comfortable in it and layer. Example for a run in our current very balmy temperature I would wear a tank and a long sleeve technical shirt with gloves - you may wear more or less. Don't have the gear - check out Value Village (all discarded race day gear is donated to here), Walmart/Zellers/Costco - they carry your very basic gear - good place to start, or if you are sure you're going to do this a while check out the cheap online gear in the Website Wednesday link - it's a great place for cheap shoes too.

3. Buy/wear good quality footwear - this is where you need to fork out about $100 and buy a pair of shoes that works for you. Don't know what that is - well when you step out of the shower tomorrow look at your foot print, is it one blob - no visible arch? You're flat footed, and so on - Runner's World has shoe guides to help you out - the best option in the end is to check out a Running Room/Penninsula Runners or New Balance store and get assessed - they'll be able to look at your old shoes and your gait and figure out what would be best for you.

4. Hydration - water is about all you need - drink as much of it through the day and you'll be fine for most of your short work outs, long runs will require that you consider carrying water with you - Gatorade or other electrolyte drinks aren't really necessary for you right now - talk to me if you have questions about that.

5. HAVE FUN - if you hurt, if this isn't fun or any other non-fun related issue let me know ASAP so we can address it.