Monday, April 21, 2014

Recipe of the Week: Balsamic-Mustard Vinaigrette

Balsamic-Mustard Vinaigrette
            This is our favorite all-around dressing, it is especially good in a kale salad, the vinaigrette softens the strong taste of the greens. I usually make a double batch and keep it stored in a large jar in the refrigerator so I don't have to make a new batch every time we have a salad. Just make sure to shake well before use, since the olive oil tends to separate when it sits for awhile. When mixing with a salad, add less dressing then you think you need, then toss and taste, adding a bit more as needed. It is very easy to put too much on a salad, a little bit goes a long way.

Prep Time: 5 min

1/4 C. Balsamic Vinegar
1/3 C. Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Tbs. Coarse ground mustard
1 Tbs. Honey
1Tbs. Soy Sauce
Salt and Pepper
1/4 C. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1.      Put all ingredients, except for the olive oil,  in a tight fitting jar or container. Shake thoroughly.
2.      Add olive oil. Shake again.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Race Recovery to Race Ready Update

It has now been 6 weeks since I ran Green Swamp 50 miler and 4 weeks until my next at Gnaw Bone 50 in Indiana. The recovery from it took longer than I thought, but I've learned so much along the way. As of my last post I was on week 2 of recovery and I had just started feeling good enough to get back on my feet. I reached a new point of my training. For the first time I didn't have a training plan I was going to follow. I had decided that for the rest of the year, I would take what I've learned and try to train myself.

With 8 weeks left until my next 50, I could barely run 8-9 miles without a lot of pain in my feet. This was a great time for me to learn what different pains are and what they mean. Fatigue pain is okay and you can fight through it, where damage pain is not so good to fight through. Knowing and applying this are two different processes. Through the following weeks my goal was to feel comfortable on my feet again. I decided to cut out the long runs for a bit and focus on running more often.

Before Green Swamp, I had been running 5 days a week. I decided I would start running every day and take a break when my body felt like it needed a break. During the last 4 weeks (3/17-4/13), I have missed 3 days of running. The first 2 weeks (3/17-3/30) didn't have a run over 10 miles. I wanted to focus on getting my foot strength and balance back. During the first week of April I started mixing in some speed work and hill training. I was finally feeling optimistic about my upcoming race. With just 5 week remaining it was time to add a bit of volume to my training. I started out last week, 4/7-4/13, wanting to run every day and hoping that a few of those would be long runs. It turned out I was able to push through my first 100 mile week!

With 4 weeks left, I hope to repeat the volume this week. Then, I'll slowly start tapering for the race. I am feeling so much more optimistic about my potential race condition. It has been quite the journey watching how the body recovers from an extreme activity. Next time it should recover even quicker.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Recipe of the Week: Grilled Vegetable Salad

Grilled Vegetable Salad
We sometimes eat this huge salad 2-3 times a week. It is super quick and easy. Often, we grill a protein along with the veggies, chicken or salmon go well. You can add or substitute any vegetables that grill nicely.

Prep Time: 5 min
Grill Time: 15-20 min
Servings: 2-4

1 Red Pepper (quartered, stem and seeds removed)
1 Green Pepper (quartered, stem and seeds removed)
1 Red Onion (sliced in half)
2 Portobello Caps (stems removed)
1 Small Eggplant (Sliced 1/2 inch thick)
1 Small bunch of Asparagus
1/2 Pint of Grape Tomatoes (halved)
8 oz Blue Cheese
Spinach or Salad Greens
Olive oil
Red wine Vinegar or Balsamic Vinegar (or both, depending on your taste preferences)
Sea Salt and Pepper
(optional toppings: avocados, chickpeas, hard-boiled eggs, grilled salmon or grilled chicken breast)

1.      Preheat grill
2.      Drizzle peppers, onion, portobello, eggplant and asparagus with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.  Grill until done. Remove from grill and slice all vegetables to desired size, I like thin strips.
3.      In large bowls spread out spinach or salad greens, top with tomatoes, grilled vegetables and blue cheese. Lightly sprinkle with vinegar ( A little bit goes a long way).
4.      Add additional toppings and proteins as desired.