Thursday, August 29, 2013

200th Post!

It's my 200th post!  To celebrate, I'm inspired by Jennifer at The Final Forty and am doing a Disney entry.

Favorite runDisney Race:

By default, it's the Princess Half Marathon, but I'm super excited to do the half in January.  Disneyland is on my bucket list, but I also want to do the Wine and Dine half.

Favorite Disney movie:

Beauty and the Beast, quickly followed by the Lion King.

Favorite Disney song:

Ummm, I don't really know.  It could be Under the Sea, or I Wanna Be Like You, but the one song I listen to all the time right now is Touch the Sky from Brave.

Favorite Disney Park:


Favorite Disney Restaurant:

My favorite memory is the Chef's table at Victoria and Albert with my parents.  Lots of small portions, including 3 desserts.  My ideal meal!

Favorite Disney Princess:

Merida.  I know she's technically Pixar, but so much of my 16-year-old self is in that character.

Favorite Disney Character:

Going back to my childhood, it was Captain Hook!  I loved the villains because without them, there's no story.   But I do love Stitch.

Favorite Disney Memory:

Too many to chose one.

Random Disney Fact:

Did you know a 7-year-old doesn't plan strategically around the park?  My dad was on crutches due to a broken ankle, and my planning had no organization whatsoever.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Reading When I'm Not Running

If there's one thing I love about not being in school, it is that I can read whatever I want and not be forced to read something because it's considered a "classic."  Sorry, but if I have to slog through Dickens with a dictionary handy, I'm not going to enjoy reading the book.  Case in point: freshman year of high school I was supposed to read Great Expectations, but I didn't get beyond chapter 3.  Side note: my math score was the higher score on my SAT.  Go figure.

Now, of course, I can read whatever I want, whenever I can, and I can read a whole book if I want to.  My favorite series right now are the Lady Emily Mysteries, India Black - madam of espionage, Royal Spyness, and Lady Arianna Hadley.  All of them take place in England, but don't worry, I'm also reading a series that takes place in 1880s San Francisco, the Sarah Woolson series.  Thank goodness I have a Kindle.  Without that, I'd have the makings of my own library.

Those aren't the only books I'm reading, but those are my favorite for now.  I had been reading a series starring Abigail Adams, but the last book was published in 2011.  There's been no word from the author if more are coming or not :(

What kind of books to y'all like to read?

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Random Sunday Musings 8/25

I'm so ready for fall!  I know I live in Texas, but at this point, I'm ready for crisp, cool mornings so I can get off the treadmill, put on a Running Skirt and run the trails.

I bought an IT band strap last weekend.  I was looking for it back in May, but the store I was at brushed it off and called it a band aid.  Yeah, but correcting my muscle imbalances hasn't happened over night, and I still wanted it.  So I went to a different running store to get it.

The lacrosse ball is in that picture because I dealt with the mother of all knots in my right calf the entire week.  I have no idea what I did to get it, but the knot was very tight on Sunday, so I started massaging the calf with the lacrosse ball.  I'm sure I uttered some choice words, but I needed to work through it.  I've made progress, but it's still there.  I have another lacrosse ball at work so I can work the calf during my lunch breaks.

The summer has been very much a start/stop season, so with Labor Day weekend coming up, I want to start getting back into a groove and keeping it.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Nine for IX: the '99ers

It came!  The one Nine for IX I marked on my calendar since the announcement of the Nine for IX series.  Tuesday's documentary was "The '99ers," about the US women's national world cup winning team.  I can't believe it's been 14 years (eek!).  That was the summer before I started high school.

I was glued to the TV whenever I could watch the games.  I saw the US train in person when they were in Boston to face North Korea.  I went to the China/Norway game at the old Foxboro Stadium (I wish I had pictures of that place).  And of course I remember the game at the Rose Bowl.  I was on pins and needles during the shoot out, and I was nervous during the entire game.  Talk about stress.

I loved this documentary.  It wasn't just about the run to victory, it showed what the team was like off the field, and even the players admit they were crazy around each other.  I definitely got the sense that the team's dynamic comes maybe once in a lifetime.  All the pieces fit exactly the way they needed to in order for the team to achieve the success that they did.  Maybe that explains why the US haven't won the world cup since then?

And yes, I did watch it again last night :-)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Follow the White Rabbit

Less than two weeks are left before the Disneyland half.  Any readers going this year?  Who's doing what races?  I've seen the courses and the 10k looks so much fun!  I know it's tough for Disney to keep the races in the Disneyland parks as much as possible since they're thisclose to each other, but that looks like one incredibly fun 10k.

I also have to say Disney's expos are the best I've been to.  Yes, Princess was quite crowded last year, and I heard this year it was moreso because of the venue, but they're still the best.  After being to several Disney expos, I was disappointed with the Dallas expo last year and the Eugene expo was tiny.  Disney always seems to have the companies I'm interested in, but come January, I won't be able to buy anything.  My birthday is at the end of January, so between Thanksgiving and my birthday, shopping for myself is off limits.

What is your opinion, what is your favorite expo?

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Random Sunday Musings 8/18

I have to admit, I am a little more worried about my IT band twinge from last weekend than I wanted to admit.  I really do think I over did it last weekend.  When I was doing the Jillian Michaels buns workout, I remembered some things I did in the core workout(s) - workouts because I combined level 1 and 2 - that could've flared up that side of my leg.  Lesson learned.

I scheduled a deep tissue massage for Saturday because of that ITBS flare-up and, with adjusting to new shoes, there were some knots that needed to be worked out.  And apparently I carry a lot of stress in my shoulders.  The therapist said it was like working through concrete.  Yikes!

At least one good thing happened this weekend.  The EPL is back!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Running for Rescues Virtual Race

I signed up for my first virtual race!  It's the Run Your Tail Off 5k option since that's a perfect distance to work back to after my spell on the sidelines.  It benefits Running for Rescues, and is organized by Runaway Royalty.

I grew up with both dogs and cats, so I'm not specifically one person or another.  I love a dog's devotion, but I also love a cat's independence.  My first word was "doggy."  If you don't think you can train a cat, you  haven't discovered Temptation treats (just ask Hudson).  Most importantly, I love rescue groups since they give animals a chance to find a forever home.  The last three cats my family has adopted has come from a rescue shelter in Jamaica Plains, MA.

I'm also a sucker for all things animals.  I wanted to be a vet until 7th grade science had us dissect everything under the sun.  I realized I didn't have the stomach for it.  My favorite book series growing up was All Creatures Great and Small, and my favorite story is that of Mrs. Donovan, Rex, and Roy.  It always makes me cry, as do many of the stories.  Always have tissues handy when reading those books.

I'm not at the 5k distance yet, but it's a great way to achieve that distance.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Killer Buns

I ended up doing 2.25 miles on Sunday, but between 1.75 miles and 2 miles, I felt IT band twinge a little bit.  It wasn't a sharp pain, but I could feel it.  I think I over did it this weekend with core work, including squats, and then 2 miles with sore legs.  Not to mention all that came after I was in DC and didn't have the opportunity to do much while there.  I'm not worried right now, but I need to wait until this weekend to test out my legs with another 2 miles.

My shoes are still feeling good, but I knew they wouldn't solve the problem outright.  I know I still have to strengthen, so look what I picked up Sunday at Target.

I watched level 1, which is a little over 40 minutes when all is said and done.  I know I'm going to be sore after I do level 1 for the first time, which will be tomorrow.  I'm doing these DVD workouts while it's hotter than Hades outside and I was told I need to strengthen my glutes, so here goes!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Random Sunday Musings 8/11

Now that I'm back from DC, I can get back in the swings of things.  I worked out once while in DC and then Saturday I did 30 minutes of Jillian Michaels core work, which made me a little sore.  Saturday was a busy morning because this weekend was tax-free shopping in Texas.  My main reason to go to the Outlet Mall was to get a carry-on suitcase, but I also stopped in some other stores.  Shockingly, I didn't buy any work out gear.  The Outlet Mall has UA, Nike, Adidas, Puma, Reebok, and I avoided buying anything from them.  I'm actually proud of myself :)

Today I plan on doing another 2 miles like I did 1.5 weeks ago.  I'm continuing to test out my new Brooks shoes, and so far no worries have popped up.  I've got until the end of August to make my decision, but when I was testing out the Asics Nimbus, worries had already popped up and I returned the shoes after 2 weeks.

I've also started thinking about ordering a Sparkle Skirt.  I love the 3 Running Skirts I have, and don't think I could have too many skirts.  I just don't know which color Sparkle Skirt I should get, though I do have one vote for pink.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

You know You're a Runner When...

I was in DC the first half of this week for a conference, and I scoped out the gym and ice machine on my floor after checking in.  I've certainly had a few of those moments of "you know you're a runner when..."

* You watch music movies and find songs you want to run to (like Pitch Perfect)

* You get all excited in CVS when you find travel-size peanut butter

* You check out the gym and ice machine at a conference hotel before picking up the conference materials

If anyone wants to add to the list, feel free to comment.  I thought it might be fun to have this as a page on the blog that I can keep adding to.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

It's the Shoes!

In my best Agador Spartacus (Hank Azaria) voice: It's the shoes!

I broke down and went to Run On! and discussed all the issues I've been having with injuries, and how they cropped up when I started wearing the GT 2000s.  I made it clear part of the problem was my fault, but I also know many, many, many others have been complaining about the GTs and have had to switch due to injuries.  The guy I was working with pretty much indicated that's been the case at the store this year.

I wear SuperFeet (Berry) inserts with my shoes, and have for a few years, with absolutely no issues.  The problem this time around was the inserts with the GTs were causing my feet to roll outwards, putting stress on the outside of my leg.  He knew because of two things: he saw the rolling outwards when I was walking in the GTs with inserts, and he saw the tread pattern at the bottom of my shoes.  The tread pattern was on the outside of the heel, more apparent on the right shoe than the left.  Guess which leg has the ITBS???  In the past, my tread pattern has been right down the middle of the shoes.

I was fitted to my inserts, which fit almost perfectly, so he said right away I needed to move out of the Asics since the inserts were not fitting properly in the shoes.  I needed to move to a more neutral shoe that would fit the inserts so my feet would stay in place.  I tried on 2 different Brooks and 1 Saucony, and settled on the Brooks Ghost 6.

Suffice to say, I can't help but be angry at the revamping of Asics shoes this year.  I don't mean to bash on Asics, but why fix what wasn't broken?  I can take the slight tinkering of each new shoe model every year, but Asics went overboard this year and changed too much.  I really hope the Brooks works, because I certainly am not going back to the GTs.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Random Sunday Musings 8/4

Holy crap, it's August?!  Well, judging from the forecast, that's affirmative.

On Wednesday, I finally got Stagecoach from Netflix, which is considered John Wayne's first major role.  I've kind of been in a Western mood for a few weeks ever since a coworker mentioned she wanted to watch a good western movie and I mentioned Silverado.  So I went home that day and watched it.  Then I watched McLintock!, the Magnificent Seven was on TCM (I like Pixar's spin much better), Hang 'Em High from Netflix, and now Stagecoach.  What are your musts for Western movies?  The ones I own are:

Cat Ballou
and of course, Blazing Saddles

I've also seen the Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, the Searchers, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, High Noon, Support Your Local Sheriff, Support Your Local Gunfighter, and True Grit (both of them).

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Summer Recipe: Corn Risotto

I made another summer favorite Sunday night, a corn risotto recipe with shrimp sprinkled with chili powder.  My mom got this from a risotto cookbook years ago, and I love it!  I store it with my summer recipes because it's significantly lighter fare than rice risotto, and must faster to cook.  I will warn y'all though, it gets messy when it's time to grate the ears of corn.  Corn splatter goes everywhere so don't wear your best clothes while prepping for this meal.  The corn base also makes a lot, even when I cut the recipe in half.  I am missing the avocados suggested for garnish since I don't eat them straight up.  I eat guacamole though so go figure :-p

Full Recipe:

18 ears of corn
10 T unsalted butter
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1/2 cup canned diced mild green chiles
2 T lime juice
salt and ground pepper to taste
1 1/2 lb shrimped peeled and deveined
1 1/2 t mild or hot pure red chili powder (I go with mild)
1 avocado
3 T coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

Remove the kernels from 6 ears of corn; hold each ear by its pointed end, steadying its stalk end on a cutting board.  Using a sharp knife, cut down along the cob to strip off the kernels, turning the cob with each cut.  Place the kernels in a bowl.  Holding a box grater over the bowl and using the largest shredding holds, carefully grate the kernels off the remaining 12 years (***this is the messy part***)

In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt 6 T of the butter.  Add the onion and saute until translucent, 3-5 minutes.  Stir in the corn, broth and green chiles, reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally until the mixture is thick and the corn is tender, about 10 minutes.  Stir in the lime juice, season with salt and pepper, cover and keep warm.

Dust the shrimp evenly with the chili powder and a little salt.  In a large frying pan over high heat, melt the remaining 4 T of butter.  As soon as the butter foams, add the shrimp and sauté until they turn bright pink, about 4 minutes (2 minutes each side).  Remove from the heat.

Spoon the corn risotto onto warmed individual plates.  Arrange the shrimp on top.  Cut the avocado in half lengthwise and remove the pit and peel.  Cut each half lengthwise into 6 equal wedges.  Arrange 2 avocado wedges on each plate, garnish with the cilantro and serve.