Monday, November 16, 2009

first time for . . . running?


I would consider myself a pretty active person.  On most weeks I get to the gym about 4 times and then try to fit in an outdoor weekend activity, which is usually cycling or more gym time.  Lately this exercise schedule has been thrown out the window with the end of the semester approaching fast.  Now I’m getting to the gym 2, maybe 3 times per week if I’m lucky?  Fitness is a huge part of my life and it just makes me feel better too, so I’ve been a bit blah not being able to get that time in.  Weekends have actually been my saving grace because I’m still able to fit in something, and this past weekend I tried my hand at running!

I know that I am an anomaly in the blog world since I don’t run, and so many of you are awesome runners!  I really have been wanting to try my hand at a sprint triathlon sometime in the future, so I figured I better start training now for next season’s races!  Honestly I can say that I’ve never just gone for a run for the fun of it.  I’ve had to run a bit for dance team in college and we had to run up and down the bleachers of the football stadium, but that’s about it.  I’ve never really liked running because it is very repetitive and gets old on a treadmill to me, but running outside is so much better! 

On Sunday I met Kristen at 7am at a local running store and we went for a chilly 5 miles with a couple short walking breaks in between.  Honestly, aerobically I felt great, like I could keep going (we were taking it easy which was good).  My body didn’t feel too bad afterwards, and right when I got home I fueled with a nice smoothie and handful of pistachios.  As the day wore on though, my joints were not liking me at all.  Right below and to the outside of my knee was hurting like a mother and I could tell my IT band was not right.  I could barely make it up the stairs.  Darn it all, I just want to be a runner!  I can cycle 50 miles, dance for hours and jump around for kickbox, but running is just different.  I think it is the repetitive motions.  I took some Aleve, and finally tonight it’s starting to feel a bit better, but I’m hoping that with time and gradual training my body won’t hurt as much . . . right???  (reassurance please!)  I may have to have someone look at my form and see if it’s off. 

I am sure wanting one of these right now to track my training and practically run and cycle for me! lol 

The rest of the weekend was spent in the library and working on presentations, so I won’t go into detail.  I’m still working on my last proposal, and hope to start actually writing it tonight.  My goal is to have it all done before Thanksgiving so I can enjoy the holiday.

IMG_5449 I had a request from Amanda to recap the sweet tater lasagna I recently posted :)  This was a small version since I was using random leftovers, but you can always make more and have more layers!

  • 2-3 cups pasta sauce
  • 4 lasagna noodles, cooked
  • 2 cups ricotta with Italian seasoning, garlic powder & fresh basil
  • 2 small sweet potatoes (yams) sliced very thin
  • sautéed mushrooms, along with a roux added (1 cup NF milk and 1 tbsp flour) and a bit of pasta sauce
  • Any kind of cheese for topping:  mozzarella, parmesan, etc.

Layer everything in the pan, alternating, and cover it with foil so the sweet potatoes will cook.  Bake at 425 for about 25-30 minutes then un-cover, top with cheese and bake till golden. 

I loved all your pistachio ideas and links, thank you!!!  With an overwhelming majority, most of you want some pistachio ice cream, and boy that doesn’t sound like a bad idea if I do say so myself :)  Plus I have a couple vanilla beans screaming to be used in ice cream!  Even though it’s getting pretty chilly outside, I always enjoy some of that.

Speaking of pistachios, here’s another quick and easy way to use them . . .

Coconut-Pistachio Crusted Chicken 

(measurements are approximate)

  • cup pistachios
  • 1/2 cup shredded plain coconut
  • 1/3 cup parmesan
  • all-purpose seasoning (mrs. dash) 
  • 1 pound chicken breasts
  • 1/3 cup egg white
  • 1 tbsp honey

Pre-heat oven to 425.  Pour the pistachios, coconut, parmesan and seasoning in a food processor and pulse until fine; place in a shallow dish.  Pour the egg and honey in another shallow dish.  Cut chicken lengthwise to make them thin, or you can pound it.  Dip chicken in egg white mixture, then coconut mixture and place on a wire rack in a sheet pan.  Drizzle chicken with a little olive oil.

Bake for approximately 15-20 minutes depending on the thickness of the chicken.  So amazing!



They are also great chopped on top of a big salad!  I’ve been eating a quite a few pistachios lately.


Are you a runner?  How did you get started?  Any tips?  And if not a runner, how did you get started in your hobby of choice?

Hope your week got off to a good start :) 



kristen :) said...

Just realized I totally forgot the mozzarella and parmesan cheese that should go on top of the lasagna!!! oops :)

Susan said...

I started running in sixth just kind of happened! I joined the cross country and track teams and the rest is history, I suppose. Running has never been "hard" to me...put me on a treadmill/elliptical and I can only last about three minutes, but I can go for HOURS outside.

Everyone is a little different. Running might not be your thing. Or you can make it your thing! Power of the mind. :)

Devan Geselle. N said...

i used to LOVE running. when i do go out runningk i do enjoy it still. I am not "fit" to run at the moment though, so I am sticking to gentle yoga.
it takes a while to get going in a new routine. PLAN a day to start something, mark it on your calender, DO IT! and if you dont like it, then you tried. But if you DO love it (like me with yoga and running) continue telling yourself how good is makes you feel, and you WILL do it again :) and again.. ;) xo

MelindaRD said...

I am right with you on the running thing. I'd love to enjoy it but I really hate running. I love being active but honestly running is no fun to me and I find it painful. Good for you for giving it a try. I guess if you keep practicing it will get better.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a runner and don't run in a regular base because I find it boring. but I do run once every a while and like the hype a intense cardio gives me. :)

tam said...

I started running a few years ago and have to say I've never looked back, last march I did my towns half marathon and it was so hard but my proudest moment was running across the finish line and think ing I DID IT!!!!! I'm not able to run at the mo as I have a sore hip but it will be back training soon I hope as I want to compete next year again, once you start to run you just can't stop its great. Good luck with your running and enjoy, I'm sure you will x x x

Shannon said...

I was not a all! I was the cardio queen at the gym, but when I would try running I just felt so out of shape. And I hurt! But then I made a commitment to build up to it. So I would run for a mile, and then switch to another activity that was easier on my body. And gradually I added to that. I ran my first half marathon last week and I still can't believe it! Now, cycling 50 miles...that would be quite a feat for me!

Thinspired said...

Kristen, you must be seriously in shape to not be a runner and then just pick up and run 5 miles! That is truly impressive. To me, anyone who runs is a runner. That means YOU!

Gina said...

Yeah, many bloggers are into running. I'm not. I was never a runner when I was a kid or, in middle school, or high school. Then I started becoming really good at it in college, and I got into it. But not my body reacts very badly when I run (I have weak ankles so I get shin splints really easily, plus I get calluses and plantar warts!! ewww). Now I just prefer speed walking or using the elliptical. I don't feel like I'm missing out, at all.

*Naomi* said...

mmm that pistachio crusted chicken sounds fabulous! its crazy what you can do with nuts, I never think to crust chicken, but why not?

I LOVE to run, it is my go-to cardio. I used to run everyday in HS at least 3 or 3.5 a day, then I tapered off a bit and became interested in more weight training and spinning (which I LOVE!) I still run about 15 miles a week and love it!

tips would be start off slow and build up! switch up some days alternating sprinting and then long distance...also a great pair of sneaks! I love Brooks!

MelissaNibbles said...

I'm sorry you had a bad running experience. It took me a VERY long time to get into running. I was devoted to the elliptical and cardio kickboxing. I worked my way slowly into running and now I love it. The weird thing is, now when I do the elliptical trainer, I end up very sore in the legs and shoulders. Strange.

The lasagna looks amazing!

Anonymous said...

Hey running buddy. haha. I don't think I will be much of a runner even if I try to work up to it. But I think if we keep it up, we will only get better. I am the same way though, I could do spin, dance, kickboxing all day but have such a hard time with the running. Thanks for keeping pace with your slow friend!

Elina said...

Both dishes looks amazing!!
I started running a few years ago on a treadmill and only this year embraced the outside. I definitely used to run because I thought it was the best form of cardio but over the summer learned to really enjoy it. My favorite way to run is with a friend, at an easy pace, and talk about random stuff. Time just flies by!! And yes, it DOES get easier... just keep trying :)

Nicole M., MS, RD, LD said...

I am a runner. Start slow and work your way up a bit at a time. For me, I started with a block (I had never been an exerciser) and I went 1/2 block further every day. I built up endurance so quickly. I actually quit running cross-country in HS so that I could compete in 1/2 and full marathons! I LOVE running! Mental and physical health for me!

Diana said...

chicken looks awesome! love the flavor combo!

have you tried Couch to 5K? when i was considering taking up running as a hobby I was going to do it. Since then, i've gotten really into zumba. I just have more fun with it. maybe i'll do couch to 5 k one day?

good luck!

:) Diana

Corinne @ Green Grapes Blog said...

Hi Kristen!
I was just laughing so hard at the fact you WON all those pistachios! I adore them, but that's a ton! Good you got some recipes cookin'!
From a soon-to-be RD to a an RD ... I am happy I found your blog! Good stuff! I'll definitely be returning:)
Happy blogging!
Corinne @ Green Grapes Blog

Anonymous said...

Hey Kristen,
yup, my face is still green from envy for your pistachios! LOVE this savory recipe...Wow!

Oh, and I LOVE practically keeps me sane. But it's not for everyone, I agree. Other people love biking but biking bores me to death!

Astra Libris said...

Ooooh, your sweet potato lasagna sounds SO delicious! Such a brilliant idea, putting sweet potato in lasagna! I love your paring of coconut and pistachios on the chicken, too - I can't wait to fix this one for Zach! I know he'll love it! :-)

I so wish I liked running... Sigh. I love practically every other form of exercise, but I find running so tedious... (sorry, all those great runners out there! My marathon-runner friend Aaron says I'm crazy... :-) I still make myself run about once a week or so, but I still much much prefer the cycling and hiking I do during the rest of the week! :-)

s said...

excellent looking dish....

Anonymous said...

Love your blog! It's great - and I adore anything with pasta, sauce and that lasagna is right up my alley! I'm just getting back into running myself and blogging about it. Check in if you have time - add me to your Roll :) Cheers!

FoodFitnessFreshair said...

Running can become addicting. It makes your body feel so great, especially after a nice outdoor run. Just start slow, stick with it, and pretty sure I bet it will become part of your regular fitness regiment. It's a great way to destress and just spend sometime in nature or spend sometime with yourself.

Emily said...

5 miles is sure a lot for someone who says she isn't a runner. :-) I think you are doing great!

I think your body will adjust. As a former dancer, I'm sure you know tons of stretches...just make sure to warm up and cool down and stretch.

That sweet tater lasagna looks amazing!

Chow and Chatter said...

your doing great to fit in the activity with studying, love the chicken

Angie said...

I am so not a runner too! I've run in the past...lots of 5ks and even a half-marathon, but it just isn't my thing.

Love the lasagna!

Have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

you are definitely not an anomaly in the blogworld - i'm not a runner either, but I have to say that I think you sure are - you busted out 5 miles and don't consdier yourself a runner?!? you are amazing!

Marcella Brown said...

this is a neat recipe blog. classy and cosy. i feel like in a good restaurant.

s said...

im not a runner but im sooo inspired by your blog...its really AWESOME!!