Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Taper Crankiness

Still here.  Official Taper for Little Rock Marathon has begun.  12 days until the race and I'm so relieved that it is almost here.  Some folks call this time before the race taper madness.  Workouts are shorter, some folks gain weight during this time, race performance stress kicks in, and you seem to notice a lot more aches and pains that you didn't when you were in full-on training.

I have deemed this period of time -  taper crankiness. 

This training session has been incredibly difficult - I think because of the weather.  It seems like Denver has been abnormally cold. Quite frankly, I'm more than tired of contemplating running outside in sub 10 or 20 degree temperatures, in the dark.  The alternative is no better, facing the dreadmill.  This time last year, my winter target race, the Phoenix Half Marathon,  had come and gone.  So I think because Little Rock included training through all of January and February it made it more maddening.  A few of us have already declared...never again will we train for a late winter/early spring race. 

I guess my crankiness has made me unwilling to blog.  Let's see if I can catch you up quickly. 


Men



On Friday night, I went out with the one and only bachelor currently in the mix.  The other bachelor has chosen other things in his life over dating.  This is a shame because I had enjoyed spending time with him.  Anyhow, the current bachelor and I went to my law school alumni hockey game reunion and we had a great time.  As soon as I invited him, I thought maybe this wasn't a good third date option.  However, he's an alum of the same university and he loves the hockey team and university, so he was more than willing to participate. 

While things are still in the very early stages, I have a good feeling about this bachelor.  We have fun together and unlike other bachelors in the past, he calls and texts on a rather regular basis.  This is nice.  He seems willing to put the time into a relationship and is a great listener.  The fact that he is cute too is just icing on the cake.

Runs
Saturday I had a 16 mile run on the schedule - the last big push before taper.  I woke up to snow and cold.  I made it to the running group's meeting spot, a good 30 minutes away from my home.  And I arrived cranky.  There were only four of us from my pace group (compared to the usual 25 folks).  Smart people were those who did not run that day.  Conditions were not ideal.  A layer of ice was underneath a layer of snow.  Kinda like running in sand.  So instead of 16 miles, I did about 12 miles.  This is unlike me for sure.  I usually following the schedule exactly.  But my frustration with the weather got the best of me.

Today is speedwork day.  I couldn't fathom meeting the group this morning in 15 degree weather, so I'm planning to hit the afternoon session - while it will be dark, it should be warmer.

Eats
Saturday evening, I went to Elways in Cherry Creek to kick off Restaurant Week.  Here in Denver, for $52.80 (our altitude), a couple can have a three or four course meal at some of the top restaurants in town.  I went with two friends and the food was amazing.  Unfortunately, our service was rushed.  Our entree arrived while we were still eating our appetizers.  And when this happened, our wait staff were not around to "fix it." We all started with the roasted red pepper soup, which was divine.  My entree was salmon, which was perfectly cooked.  Both friends ordered steak, one had the sirloin and the other the prime rib.  Everyone was happy.  Dessert was the right ending: cheesecake and brownie lollipops.  Sorry no pictures - I need to just jump in and start doing this!

Sunday morning a friend and I went to my favorite breakfast spot, Snooze.  I had the eggs benedict and we split a blueberry pancake.  After grocery shopping, I made chicken soup and banana bread.  This cooking reflected my need to clean out the freezer - and out of my freezer came homemade chicken stock, chicken, and bananas!  The chicken soup was divine and all without a recipe.  I literally threw in stock, chicken, carrots, onion, garlic and whole wheat egg noodles.  Simple.  And the banana bread was so yummy.  The recipe is below!


Banana Bread

3/4 c. flour
3/4 c. whole wheat flour
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1/2 c. sugar
2 T melted butter
4 bananas, mashed
1 egg

Spray one loaf pan.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine first 5 ingredients.  Stir.  Add remaining three items.  Stir until moist.  Bake for 40-50 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes.  Cool on rack.  12 servings.

Nutritional information per serving: 147 calories, 2.6 g total fat, 1.4 g saturated fat, 21 mg cholesterol, 124 mg sodium, 29.5 g carbs, 1.4 g fiber, 13.2 g sugar, 2.5 g protein.

I'll get back to daily totals sometime this week.  Have a great Tuesday!

Laura

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