Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Stir Fry/Fried Rice Cooking

So I posted a picture of my fried rice that I made last week (Monday) on instagram, and had more than one request for additional information about it. So I decided that I am going to attempt to write a recipe, one of my very first EVER, for this blog. I did take measurements as I was cooking, so I can actually write a recipe, in theory, and so I suppose I will see how this works out!

Emily's Chicken Fried Rice
serves 3
2 small chicken breasts
3/4 cup uncooked brown rice
2 eggs
1 cup cut green beans
1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp liquid aminos
1 tbsp sweet chili sauce
salt & pepper to taste

The chicken and rice can both be prepared ahead of time. This was what I did when I made this meal. A lot of folks who meal prep may prep chicken or a starch for the week (I know I do!), so if that is the case for you, remember that when you are doing your weekly prep. This is pretty much plain chicken and plain rice.

1. Cook brown rice according to package directions. I used my rice cooker. Set aside.
2. Season chicken with salt and pepper as desired and bake in a 350* oven until cooked through. Then cut into small pieces. Set aside.
3. Spray a wok or non-stick skillet with cooking spray/pam and add green beans and cook them. I like them to get a teeny bit of brown on them.
4. Add oil to pan and give a kick toss.
5. Crack eggs into pan and then scramble.
6. When eggs are fully cooked, add chicken and rice and combine. After those are heated through add liquid aminos and chili sauce, tossing to combine everything.
7. Serve immediately.

I have not done any calculation of macros on this, but overall, most of the ingredients are fairly straightforward and it is a solid meal.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A busy weekend as a solo parent

Things have been pretty busy over here. This past weekend, while I was busy running 16 miles on the treadmill (I am proud that I did it. I am happy that it is over.) J was out playing golf for the weekend with Jamie. Jamie and J play golf for a weekend multiple weekends per summer, although since I have been preggo/had a baby, they are sticking to closer to home. This year, there was some discussion of going up to Toledo and then Addie and I could hang out there, and J & Jamie would go to the Ann Arbor area for golf, but that just didn't happen.

So they played 18 holes on Friday, 36 Saturday, and 18 on Friday. Addie and I met up with them for a meal at a wing place that Jamie loves (it is always a great excuse to go there! J does not like to go that often and it is one of my favorites.)
It is kind of nice to have company at our house in the evening, without me needing to worry about entertaining anyone. So I am glad to have a few visitors. All that this has involved me was washing the sheets on our guest beds before anyone arrived. And generally, that is pretty well done beforehand, because I stripped the beds and washed the sheets the last time someone left. And now I am washing them again. So easy peasy. :)

So I had the weekend duty of entertaining a kiddo. I am planning a post to go over some ideas to entertain a two year old that are much more do-able when you do not have any help. But for now, let's just talk about the fact that I managed to get through another weekend with a kiddo solo. Those are not fun or easy weekends. My hats off to all stay-at-home-moms as well as to single parents, because holy crap.

There were walks, a movie (on our TV at home, I was not taking a kid to the movies solo!), swimming, playing outside in her kid pool, parks, everything! So I am GLAD to have survived.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Chicago Training: Week of July 20

I know have been trying to give weekly updates about Chicago and my training and how it is going. This week is no exception. Admittedly, I am trying to get posts written ahead of time so I am getting this generally written and then going back to get some updates into it on some specifics (how the workouts ACTUALLY went).

But I have been getting to the meat of training over the last few weeks, as I am sure that everyone has noticed from my logs, getting to the mileage that is up, over and above the half marathon distance that we are getting into that. It is hard to believe, and I am already getting kind of nervous.
But this past week? It went well. Especially considering the circumstances that I was dealing with this week with a sick kiddo, husband golfing, etc, which kind of limited my ability to get out for my runs as I was supposed to. More time was spent on the treadmill than I would have likes, but miles are miles are miles, right? I always set the belt to a 1.0 incline. I always messed with paces somewhat to try and give myself a bit more interesting of a run. I always had either a podcast (I am relistening to Serial now, and have been listening to all of the related podcasts) or Parenthood on Netflix. It is what it is for this particular week.

So let's review the week, shall we?

Monday: 8 miles with 4x 30s strides. Core. Treadmill running at a sick baby's naptime.
Tuesday: OFF (had XT and strength planned, but ended up running some lunchtime errands instead. Whoops.)
Wednesday: 7 miles, easy. 8:54 pace
Thursday: Track workout. 8.78 total miles. Core.
Friday: 50 minutes XT, basic strength stuff (squats, lunges, pushups, etc)
Saturday: 16 miles. Treadmill. (Ugh)
Sunday: 1 hour walk with my kiddo in the stroller.

Yep. 16 on the treadmill. That is what happens when your hubby and his buds leave at 6 am to play golf and your kiddo is already awake.

Good week though, right?

Friday, July 24, 2015

What We Ate This Week

So, J and I are really starting to get better about planning our meals (which adds to healthier eating and going out less). If you followed me when he and I first started living together (all the way back in 2010!) We ate at Buffalo Wild Wings at least three times per week. The waitress at the BWW closest to our house knew us well and helped us out a lot (for example, she pulled off getting us a BIG table on J's birthday one day when they were pretty crowded). So yeah, obviously that is not the healthiest way to be.

But since moving to our new house in April 2014, we have been making much more of an effort to plan our meals every week and go out a maximum of once per week. There are times when we are not so successful, and usually when that happened, it would be one pizza night and one night out. Honestly, that is not so bad, but that is not the norm. It is usually something that happens if we end up getting stuck at work and plans are just not easy to accomplish quickly. Then I might call the pizza shop on the way home and Addie and I will swing in through there and grab a pizza before heading home. Then we can get everyone's meals dished out so when J gets home, we can sit down and eat!

But, obviously we are doing our best to avoid that by planning our meals over the weekend and shopping to that plan. So here is what we have done (and plan to do) this week:

Sunday: grilled chicken sandwiches with salads and grilled vegetables.
Monday: Fried rice bowls with chicken
(the original plan involved noodles, but with a sick kiddo, I went with rice. More binding in the gut!)
Tuesday: Grill out brats and herb roasted potatoes (foil pack)
Wednesday: Dream dinner pasta with meatballs
Thursday: fish tacos, corn on the cob
Friday: homemade pizza with salads
Saturday: out

As you can see, we do make an effort to consume more veggies than we used to, and I am pretty pleased with the way that things go for us when we use this method of eating. On Monday, I was home with a sick kid, and I used that time to cook some chicken that we could use during the week for various meals. As a topping for the pizza, for salads, and in the noodle bowls that I made that night. It was a pretty good plan, and although staying home with a sick kids stinks, I was glad to be able to accomplish something that day (along with ensuring that my posts for the week were written!)

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Sock Love

So I want to take this post to rave about some socks that I recently started to wear. As a runner, I am generally pretty picky about athletic gear. From finding shorts that don't chafe me, tanks that breathe enough, bras that give enough support for my smallish chest, and shoes that do not cause blisters, I have tried tons of different products. The one thing that I have never been SUPER particular about is socks.

I have all kinds of preferences with socks. I have been known to LOVE balega in general, but have often hesitated to spend $12-ish on a pair of socks. But I have gotten pairs for gifts or on sale cheap and I do really like them. But I have also enjoyed Swiftwick socks, Feetures, and have worn some cheap socks purchased in 6-packs in some kind of sporting goods store.

I have grown to be pretty particular with my compression socks as can be seen here:

But this is not about that...  I want to talk about other socks and my new love. BOMBAS.
After receiving these socks I kept them in my drawer until my long run. For some reason, I have in my head that I should save new things for special runs. I am not sure what a special run is, exactly, but in this particular case, I decided that a long run was a special run. So last Saturday morning, before we ran the color run, I popped on a pair of bombas out of the packaging that they were sent to me in and as soon as I put them on my feet... ahh...
(This is the post I put on instagram about the fact that I was in love before running, and hoping that I was going to enjoy them AS much when I started running!)

As previously mentioned, I ran 14 on that day. And then I headed out and ran the color run as well. I stayed in my same disgusting top and socks (just disgusting because of sweat!) for the color run, and just changed shorts. But the socks helped me get through 17+ miles in one day, and felt my feet feeling awesome.

I have worn them for every single run since then. I wore them Monday and Wednesday, I wore them on Thursday for a tough tempo run. I AM IN LOVE.
So if you have not found what sock it is that you want to run in (non-compression) I highly recommend you look into Bombas. I discovered they were on Shark Tank (and made a deal), and have continued to look into them to learn about them as a company and their product.

I purchased these socks (and all of the pro socks) with my own money and just wanted to share something that I found!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Hip and Glute Tension - Ew

So I have been dealing with a little bit of a tight hip/glute for a few days now. Not painful, just tight, so I have been working on trying to figure out the best way to handle it, break up whatever is going on, and be feeling great again as soon as possible.

I wish that I was capable of flexibility like this.
Maybe that could help a little bit with loosening things up. (Yup, crumbs from her dessert, a cookie, all over!)

But I am not, so instead I am spending time in this position.

I am also researching you tube for videos of different stretches and ways to hit trigger points in the hip and glute just because I am willing to do whatever right now. Training is going well, and so I do not want anything to get worse or turn into any kind of injury. I have gone back to a lot of the PT exercises that I learned last summer, along with the obvious release stuff and stretching. Whatever I can do to help, right? Take care of twinges now so they do not turn into problems later!

Have you ever had high glute/hip pain? How did you fix it?

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Saturday Long Run Review

So my long run on Saturday... it was a rough one. I mean, I am going to go right out there and say, yes, I hit all of my paces. So I have a tough time saying that it was not a good run. But it did not feel great. I made some poor dinner choices the night before because we decided to go out. I used to be able to get away with that (I think to the Vegas half that I ran when newly pregnant. I had wings about an hour prior to that race!) But apparently, my body has decided that is not the way that it works anymore. Boo!

So Jen put another 14 mile run on the schedule for last Saturday, but instead of just running like I had the previous weekend, there were recommended progressive paces to start to hone in on an actual plan for the marathon. I definitely am going to need to work on holding back earlier, since busting out a few sub-8 miles in Columbus might have led to my demise in the later miles. Jen is definitely trying to help me work on that, so I am with her on that one! 

So the plan was as follows for this 14 mile progressive run.

5 miles @ 8:30
5 miles @ 8:10
4 miles @ 7:55

After getting up at 5:30 and enjoying a cup of coffee and a picky bar (smooth caffeinator) I headed out. My first mile was a little bit slow (8:34), but I was able to pick it up and hit the next few right on (8:29, 8:28, 8:31). After getting through the next mile, again, close to pace, I picked it up to run the next. I ran the first at 8:11, then 8:09. The next three were all 8:06.

I had to stop in there in those first ten and use the restroom a few times. That stunk, but as the sweat poured down my arms (that seems to happen to me, when I stop, my sweat just pours down my arms) I knew that at least I was hitting my goals. Bathroom breaks could happen on race day. It is possible. So maybe I need to continue to tool with my diet to really find out what is going to work for me in the long run. (haha! ON the long run??)

I, mistakenly, again, did not take an fuel with me. I skipped that last week too. Darn it. I really need to start working on that. This is going to be the biggest part of my game that I need to work on. I have pretty much sucked at it all of these years, so I am going to need to work on it.

I did finish up the last 4 miles on pace, maybe even a touch faster than the 7:55. Despite being well overheated and having PLENTY of tummy troubles, I ran 14.1 miles in 1:55:24 for an average pace of 8:11. I did the math and it looks like I should have done it in JUST over 8:12 per mile, or run it in basically 1:55 even for the 14 miles. So... with 16 on the plan this weekend, I am hopefully ready to take things up a notch. Cross your fingers.