Race Schedule

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Beat the Clock

Thanksgiving is next week!  November is going so fast, I can't believe it.  I was hoping to get all my holiday shopping done by Black Friday and I'm not sure I'll pull it off, but I'm going to be darn close!

I've already bought seven gifts but I've got a lot to go!  This is what Christmas Eve looks like at my house:

I think the first picture best depicts the kind of "standing room only" situation we've got going.  The rest are just because my family likes to pose for pictures ;)

What are your holiday shopping goals? Do you have a date you want your shopping done by or when you want your gifts all wrapped and ready to go?  Do you have a budget to stick to?  Or maybe one person you're looking for the perfect gift for?  Please share!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Bustin' my Bootie!

Tonight I joined Amanda's Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge!

I know, I'm already doing Courtney's 100 Day Challenge, right?  However, the 100 Day Challenge is almost over - we're already on day 85 -  I can't believe it!  December 1st  I'll be posting to discuss my progress over those 100 days.  December 1st is also my next doctor's appointment, so hopefully we'll have lots of good news then!

So, why start up a new challenge before I'm done with the last?  Well, these are two different challenges, while I can (and probably will) set my own goals for the Bootie Buster, this challenge is structured differently and right now I think its just what I need.  It award points for activity and that's definitely where I'm struggling now.

I've been doing okay eating well, which is very important since my activity level is way down right now.  I've worked out once since the last time I was able to run.  Yep.  That's it.  Once.  In two weeks.  But once every two weeks isn't enough (no matter how careful I am about what I eat).

I've lost 20 pounds this year, which isn't a lot in a year, but I lost that weight slowly and the way I wanted to lose it - so that it will stay off.  My first weight loss goal was to make it to the same weight I was at when I started college.

I'm finally there.

This is by no means a final goal, but its a start and I'm not giving it up over a minor injury, so I'm digging into the Bootie Buster Challenge starting November 20th.    This is the accountability I need right now.

I'm not looking for a miracle right now.  I will be absolutely perfectly happy to make it through the holidays without gaining any weight.

Who else has a goal for the rest of this year?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Time for Team Work

Today was the big day and I came out of my appointment with mostly good news.  I'll warn you, you might want to get comfy and maybe get a drink or a snack, this is going to be a long post.

I'll start with the bad news and get it out of the way and over with:  I cannot run for three weeks.

Here's the rest of the news:
My leg never fully recovered from being casted for an unrelated injury.  My left leg is 1.5 inches smaller than my right and as a result quite a bit weaker.  As a result, I've overworked my poor left leg, have a mild case of posterior shin splints BUT my doctor feels this has already more or less resolved itself (yay #1).
There were no visible fractures on my x-rays (yay #2).
My doctor feels this situation can be corrected and I will be able to resume my training after suitable rest and rehab (yay #3).

That said, I honestly cannot express how grateful I am to have such a wonderful doctor at this moment.  I was terrified going into the appointment to the point I was actually shaking.

When I got to the office this morning, I of course had to have x-rays right away.  As I walked back to their radiology department, I saw some TNT purple on the wall.  Then I realized it was me.  My doctor had hung a picture of me, all decked out in TNT gear on his wall next to all the other athletes he's treated.  That was the first time I almost broke down.  The second time was when my doctor walked in the room.  I was so keyed up I could barely sit and the second my doctor walked in, the first thing he said was how proud he was of everything I've done since I got out of my cast last year.  And near breakdown number three came while he was measuring my legs.  This was when he noticed I was shaking.  When questioned, I admitted I was scared he was going to tell me I needed to quit running.  This is when doctor dear earned my eternal love and devotion.  He sat down on the table with me and very seriously told me this: "My job is  to help you find a safe and healthy way to achieve your goals, not to crush your hopes and dreams."

That's right.  I have the best doctor ever.  Be jealous, people.

Doctors orders are that we will approach this as a team:  I'll shut up and actually do as I'm told; diligently rest, stretch and ice.  He will help me find ways to stay active until I'm ready to run again and find a physical therapy program that will be able to heal my leg so I can still reach my goals.

So there it is: I'm not dying, I don't require amputation and I will run again.  My short term goals need some reevaluation, I think I'm more or less done for the year, but next years' races are still on the calendar.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Something a Little Spicy

I've been craving spicy food big time so I decided to give in today.  I made chicken tacos.  I love - LOVE - this recipe because its easy, it makes tons and it freezes well.  You can also easily adjust the heat level with the addition of a couple peppers. And BONUS - this is basically just chicken and veggies - what you choose to put on top of it is between you and your god, I was happy with a little low fat cheese, lettuce, tomato and more hot sauce.

Spicy Chicken Tacos

2 lbs. Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs, trimmed of fat
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
8 cloves garlic, lightly smashed (just give them a quick slap with your knife, that's plenty)
1 16 oz. jar Salsa of your choice
1 can chopped green chiles, drained
1-2 hot peppers of your choice (optional)
Juice of 1 - 2 limes
1 tablespoon Kosher Salt
2 teaspoons pepper
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 tablespoon Chili Powder

Mix together salt, pepper, cumin and chili powder, season both sides of chicken thighs with mixture and place in the bottom of slow cooker.  Add remaining ingredients to slow cooker.  Cook on 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.  Chicken should shred when stirred, if not, shred meat with two forks.  Serve with what ever type of taco fixings you like.

According to my calculations, the chicken breaks alone down to about 100 calories in a 1/4 cup serving - which easily made 2 tacos for me and was plenty to fill me up.

In other news (and I know this isn't new at all) tomorrow is the big day - I see my doctor.  I'm really nervous about the appointment, but its first thing in the morning, so it will be over soon.  I'll be back tomorrow to let you guys know what news I've got then!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Good News

I've gotten a few different pieces of really good news the last few days.  One of them is not yet publishable but it will be soon - suffice to say it made for an exciting day yesterday though.

The other news came this morning, just as work was starting to overwhelm me.  I got an email - a travel itinerary from Southwest.  My friend is coming from Kansas to visit me!  We'd been talking about her coming but then it looked like it wouldn't happen, but everything ended up working out and in a little less than a month I'll get to see Mrs. P. for the first time since her wedding in May!

I needed that news today; not being able to run has been harder on my psychologically than I thought it would be.  I see my doctor Wednesday and I hope I'll have something more to report by then besides "my leg hurts."  I know that gets old ;)

I've also been checking out ShoeDazzle tonight - I'm going to blame Jenn for exposing me to this.  For all my shoe-minded readers go check it out, the shoes are a steal and they're super cute!

What happened to brighten your Monday?

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Failure is a Detour

First and foremost, I want to encourage everyone to visit Jenn's blog to read her post from today.  She's got something to say, its important, so please take a moment out of your day to check it out.

And back to our regularly scheduled programing:

I have to make a choice in the next 24 hours.  Saturday is the race I've been training for.

If I had to decide if I will run right now, I would say no.  I'm not feeling confident this is going to change.  This is a big disappointment to me but I'm currently in pain even while walking.  I don't think I would finish this race if I started and even if I did I'm afraid I would come out of it seriously injured.

I will see my doctor next Wednesday (Mr. Popular couldn't get me in any sooner) but until then the plan is rest.  I hadn't planned on a Turkey Trot this year, but if he clears me to run I may register for one after all.

I'm a little mad and extremely disappointed by this turn of events, I was really looking forward to this race and I've been working really hard training for it, and I've done a little wallowing this week but I'm ready to move past it....

So I present you with Plan B:  Triathlon Training!  I'm going to hit the pool, I haven't set foot in my gym in weeks and its time to get working on improving my swimming for next summer's Tris!

Please share, how do you cope with injury and illness that interferes with your running?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Mighty Meatballs

What's this?  A recipe?  Crazy, isn't it?

I made meatballs tonight, I've been craving them for a while.  So, what are the big bads in meatballs?  Well, there's an assortment of ground meats you can use.  My favorite combination is lamb and veal - not at all economical, just for reference.  There is always the conventional beef.  I went for turkey this time, however, I have learned from previous experience (and when I say experience, I mean DISASTER) that you cannot make meatballs from extra lean turkey.  The extra lean turkey falls apart, you need a little fat for whatever kind of binder you choose to attach to or you're just going to have really well seasoned turkey crumbles!

The next big bad is the aforementioned binder.  Typically breadcrumbs and egg for meatballs.  I usually half the breadcrumbs and use parmesan cheese (the powdered, canned stuff) for the rest.  I swapped out my egg for Olive Oil this time.

All these measurements are estimates, when I make meatballs (and meatloaf) I just dump stuff in the bowl.  I'm guessing we don't all have the same size hands, so "a handful of bread crumbs" doesn't really work.  As a result of my guestimations when I cook, no nutrition facts on this either.

So, here's how you make these happy little guys happen:

Mighty Turkey Meatballs

1 1/2 lbs lean (93%) ground turkey
1/4 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. Olive Oil
2 healthy pinches kosher salt
1 tsp fresh cracked pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, minced

Mix all ingredients well and from into 1 inch balls.  Place in mini muffin pans (one meatball per cup) or in foil lined pan.  Cook 1 hour at 350 degrees.

You can do what you wish with your meatballs from here.  I like to simmer mine in a red sauce and serve over whole wheat pasta.

A side note to this recipe.  SALT.  Sodium in large amounts is bad for you.  I'm really careful about sodium in processed foods but I use salt when I cook.  Here's the reason:  Salt makes food taste good.  Sweet food, savory food, it needs salt to round out the flavors.  Reason #2 I cook with salt:  I'd rather control the salt I put in my recipe when I cook it then finish, decide its bland, grab that salt shaker and go to town.  Say what you want about my methods but I think food should taste good.

Nothing new to report on the injury -I hate to use that word- front.  Still not able to run, so I'm in the same place as before.