Saturday, April 30, 2011

Lady Gaga - Judas (Audio)

Haha this is the only thing I've had time to blog about this week. Don't worry, this afternoon I will be back, I promise my loVES! Also, add this song to your playyyliisttts!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Ok I have been reading up on Gluten Free Diets and dieting in the running world in well as CEP compression socks.  At some point this week, I will be able to blog again, but its just that insane.  I even forgot I had parent/teacher conferences on Thursday night!!! (although no parent or teacher conferences with me). 

I had two ridiculously long days on Monday and Tuesday... and haven't been able to exercise.  Two days off have already left me super anxious.  I don't like that feeling. 

The next post will talk about taking time off in training and dieting, as that has been causing me a little bit o' stress lately!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


it's 4:00 a.m. in the morning and I randomly woke up to check my email and I feel sick about the kindness I received from an anonymous donor who pushed me to my donation goal.  i literally started crying and can't imagine that anyone would care this much about me, but would care this much about my cause.  But thank you to the ANONYMOUS donor that has either followed me through facebook, responded to one of my million emails, or my blog for making this happen.  I feel sick.  This is amazing.  Someone out there is amazing.  Could have been a friend, a family member, a facebook friend, a community member, a teacher from my high school, a friend's boss, a coworker, a community store owner, a national store owner, or a blog follower.  DOESN"T MATTER. THIS PERSON ROCKS!

LET'S NOT STOP THERE!  This person left a comment saying that they hoped I far exceed my goals.  SO LET'S DO THAT!  Keep donating!  Its not for me, its for a cure!

In the end, I have to thank ALL of the people who donated, because I wouldn't have ever made it to my minimum goal without the support of everyone who gave so thoughtfully.  THANK YOU!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Any takers?

Anyone want to buy this shirt for me, for my fundraiser?!?  I saw these in person while I was at the Boston Marathon Expo.  You can buy it here.  Size XS because their v-necks run a size large?  Any takers???  Well if you want it for yourself, you can purchase it at Raw Threads.  Its sustainable apparel and athletic gear made up of bamboo and organic cotton.  I own a pair of running capris and they are really comfortable and wick away moisture like woah. 

Here comes peter cottontail!

Dear cats and kittens,

You're about to embark on a post not related to training whatsoever, other than the fact that I mentioned that I ran.  Don't worry, I have every intention of telling you about my CEP compression socks that I bought and a training plan I was looking into last night. is the training part.  I ran 30 miles this past week.  Thanks to all of you who commented or talked to me in person about my poofy foofy run on saturday, because I should in all actuality be proud of myself for having run 30 entire miles in one week!  This saturday we drop down in mileage again and will only run 12.  Isn't that funny to hear/say?  I only have to run 12 this weekend.  Pffft.

After my 16 miler, I made the worst decision possible and drove directly to my parent's house in upstate NY.  This was a terrible decision because I just ran in the rain, for 2 and a half hours, and did not stretch properly OR shower before sitting in a sitting position for 3 hours on the road.  Owwwww.  My butt hurt so much the next day!  Regardless, it was a quick but happy trip home.  Me loves me family!  I wish I had had a little more time, but I already gave go mom go the heads up that training is taking precedence this year.  She understands, mostly because the living room is being done and there was ABSOLUTELY NOWHERE to sit except for in the kitchen or laying in my parents bed.  Just imagine 3 adult children and 2 adult parents laying in a communal bed together.  I happens, whatever.  How else were we going to watch a movie that I couldn't stay awake for?

Before we had a party in the USA, my mom made a spinach lasagna and treated us to NY wine from a winery in her hometown!  Here is an aeriel view of the meal. My mom suggests using precooked lasagna for nights when you want to throw together a semi-quick meal although it does take about an hour to cook.

Ok, and here it is in another angle.

And lastly, here it is on my plate!  Thank goodness I had leftovers for today and tomorrow's lunch!

Here is my brother enjoying his lasagna.  He still looks like Jeremiah Johnson.  

And finally, here is the FAMOUS go mom go, daddy-o, and brother indulging in deliciousness (my sister was at a concert)!

 Lastly, here is a picture of me rocking my Chilly Half Marathon superstar shirt.

 The next morning, we woke up early to head to Church for Easter service.  Sadly, the eggs we had made for cracking (you know when you color hardboil eggs and you hit them together to see who's cracks first?  Apparently its called Egg tapping and its a real thing.  Read about it on Wikipedia here! Its kind of like when you leave your shoe out on St. Patrick's day and the leprechaun puts peanut butter in it.  Apparently my family is the only one with these traditions???) were left out all night thanks to, ahem, Daddy-o.  So instead, my brother and I threw them into trees and our garage to make them burst.

As for my easter basket....I GOT AN ELECTRIC ToOTHbrush from the EASTER BUNNY!  Yes, he still visits me at the age of 27.  I will never stop believing in him and Santa.

This is a picture of me on the way to church, showing you my pretty teeth. Fitflosser probably loves me for getting an electric toothbrush.  My dental hygienist is always yelling, YES, yelling at me to get one.

Oh look, here is a shot of my sister and I.  She's sitting on the computer and I'm kissing the chocolate easter bunny I gave her.  She didn't love it.  She will also probably really love that I put up this picture.  You can see a close-up of THE courtney sister of all-time in my I love Courtney post.

What a wonderful time with my family.  I misses them, and it was good to see my grandparents on Easter day as well.  I didn't get a picture of the entire family because I forgot my camera existed between taking pictures of my teeth and my sister on the computer.  

A highlight of the day was when a spider fell on my grandma's neck in the middle of dinner.  No offense grandma, but I'm glad it wasn't me.  

Happy Easter yesterday, nerds!  Anyone else have super awesome holiday plans this weekend?

Saturday, April 23, 2011

A rainy saturday run

16 miles today.  In the rain.  I even wore a hat because I needed to keep the rain out of my eyes, which is something I never do.  Props to the Brooks Clover hat, because it totally represents the Irish center of Boston; Southie!

Also, I hate to say it, but I ran like my legs were tree trunks, but the rest of my running team kicked BUTT! I literally ran 1 minute per mile slower than I normally do.  My average pace per mile today was 9:17.  Blah.  I normally can run a strong 8:15-8:30.  Now, for some of you, that's a downright respectable time, especially when running a long run in the rain.  But, for me, I was thoroughly bummed out.  Yes, I PR'd in distance today, as I have never run 16 miles before, but time wise, it was a wash out.

Becca even had this to say in an email after our run:
I wanted to tell you, on your long(er) runs forget about your watch! Focus on how you are feeling! You want to finish these runs feeling great, like you did today, even in nonsense weather!! Once you continuously finish feeling strong, we will incorporate the watch in and show you how to run negative splits! You can still run with your watch, (for distance and knowing what mile you are at, but really don't get hung up in your times on distance runs!) The point of these long runs is to work hard, and leave some in the tank, where you know you can keep going if you need to!

She's right, because I did finish that run feeling completely fine.  My lungs weren't tight, I didn't feel like I needed to lay down and die, and I just ran right to the recovery snacks needing to stretch out my hamstrings.  But I was still frustrated!

I know (not for health or beauty standards) that to improve my time, I need to lose some weight.  I'm fully aware of this, but its hard when I'm at my "happy weight" outside of the world of running.  I feel comfortable and confident in my skin and for the first time in my 27 years, I haven't uttered the words "I need to lose weight" when looking at the mirror.  What a huge accomplishment for me.  However, in the world of running, I need to lose some weight to improve speed.  Running longer distances, and for longer amounts of time will also help.  I should also not forget to do my speedwork on tuesdays.  There are lots of training habits and commitments that need to happen prior to running a marathon.

What I realized today is that more than half of this game is mental.  I got into my head the moment I took my first step.  I wanted to stop within the first three miles but thank god for my running team, that I never actually let that happen.  Throughout this morning, as difficult as it was to get through the first 8 miles, then back the next 8, I realized I really love this challenge.  I love getting up saturday mornings for these runs, even if my brain hit a cement wall.  I love knowing that I'm pushing myself and giving it everything I have.  As an adult, especially one who isn't hitting the "typical" milestones like many of her peers, you need to find other things that motivate you; other mile makers (literally) that take time, patience, dedication, and commitment to get to the end and feel satisfied by.

But what worries me just a tad, is how I've used this training to really get my mind focus on other things in life, and replaced some hurt feelings with running.  WHICH is totally awesome and healthy, but I need to come up with a plan for myself when I'm not hyperfocused on my training 24/7.  Literally, I eat, sleep, breath, and blog about running.  Its really all I think about lately, which I am totally excited by.  I feel welcomed into a happy and healthy peace-minded and goal oriented cult of awesomeness.  However, I noticed, lately, that a lot of my conversations are focused on running, and I keep planning for what comes next.  What happens after I run this marathon, that I never thought I would ever ever accomplish in my lifetime.  Will I sign up for another one?  Will I join a running team not associated with Team in Training?  Will I find something else to push myself to do?

I'm not sure I least...for right now.  And I guess I have to be ok with this, and be ok with loving this thing called running, and be ok with loving that I ran 16 miles, whether they be the fastest 16 miles in the history of mankind, or the slowest ones to boot.  Either way, I need to appreciate what this training has done for me, and love it for its ups and downs.  Because after this, I can never tell myself I can't do anything, in life or in exercise.  How can I complain about the rain ever again, when I just rain 16 miles in it?  How can it ever be too cold, or too late to exercise?  How can I ever tell myself that I can't accomplish something, because I know, that even if my brain wants me to stop, I will finish it.  Isn't that awesome?

So cheers to a slow 16 miler, because even when I thought I couldn't do it, I could.  Cheers to getting up on saturdays and going to bed early on fridays.  And super 100x awesomer cheers to my running team this morning for killing it out there.  They have really improved in speed and endurance and I couldn't be more proud! And cheers to me for training for a marathon.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Kosher for Passover recipes!

Listen kids.  I'm not Jewish, although I can be for the right man, wink wink. Hahahha. Just kidding!  But seriously, I have a lot of friends who are, and like to keep kosher for passover.  Some bend the rules throughout the rest of the year, but being Kosher for Passover and making sure no rising bread enters their mouths is a big priority this time of year!  So, because I hung out with Jewish Baby Snake and her Jewish beau, we partook in some kosher recipes and treats!

This recipe is entitled: "We can't cook, but we have to keep Kosher for Passover Pizza"

The ingredients include:                    Matzo- however much you like
                                                          Kosher Pizza Sauce
                                                          Any other Kosher ingredient you can think of

First step is to cover a cookie tin with aluminum foil and break up the matzo into pieces

Get your kosher tomato sauce ready!  Just pour it on top of the matzo!

If you're feeling a can add artichoke sauce instead.

Top it all off with cheese and put it in the toaster oven for as long as you fancy! Basically, until the cheese melts. 
Take it out. 


For some dessert make yourself some Kosher brownies!!!  I didn't make these, I just ate them.  THEY WERE OUT OF THIS WORLD!

I found a recipe from a Kosher Blog here!

Happy Passover my loves!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Passion Pit - Little Secrets and a Giveaway!

The song got me through my half marathon. Add it to your playlists!

Also, Blonde Ponytail is doing a giveaway of BIC Bands! Enter here!
 I love her blog, so very very much! She is one of my running heroine's! Plus, Girl has the stamina and willpower to go gluten free!  What a champ!

I made food!

As you know, I've been changing my eating habits in order to incorporate a healthier and happier lifestyle.  Because its school vacation week, I've had the luxury of sleeping, eating, and running at my leisure.  With all this time, I've come up with some really stellar recipes to share with the cooking challenged, such as myself.  I call this first recipe: "I'm out of a lot of ingredients eggs"

Here is what it does require: Multigrain bread- 2 slices
                                              2 servings of egg beaters or however much you think is enough
                                              A splash of milk- I use unsweetened vanilla almond milk
                                              A sprinkling of cheese- I used my dijon ale soft chedder cheese
                                              A smidge of ground pepper 
                                              Optional- A boatload of chia seeds

Don't let the chia seeds fool you.  The meal was pretty "kick donkey" in censored terms.  I also paired my breakfast with my bottle of Ethos water ala Starbucks from when I went to the Marathon.

Next we have: "Lauren just learned that pasta tastes awesome and can be good for you"
The ingredients:
1 serving of pesto tortellini (I bought premade. You can make your own, fancypants out there)
1 apple chicken sausage cut up
2 handfuls of spinach
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 serving of honey goat cheese
Heat up the tortellini, i.e. boil it
cut up the chicken sausage and put it in a pan with the spinach.  Cook for a bit.
Add the olive oil
Put it all together in one bowl
Add goat cheese and stir until melted.

 And last but not least we have Barbara's Peanut Butter Puffins.  The best thing ever.
I left them off of my original grocery shopping list but went back to the store this morning after I cried all night about not having my puffins!

Oh man.  I couldn't help myself.  I opened the box at a stoplight.  Oh well, I justify it by the fact that I was on my way to the gym to do five miles of speedwork.  5, 1 mile repeats at 7:45 min/mile pace with 1 minute rest breaks in between.  I was a sweaty mess.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A little ditty about cadence

Here is what my coach, Becca, had to say about cadence.  I've found it some interesting food for thought and will measure my own cadence during my run today.  Sadly, that run will be on a treadmill thanks to the awesome adage of April Showers Bring May Flowers.  

Cadence can make a huge difference in your form. This is something that you all should be aware of, thinking about, and checking on a regular basis. During one of your runs time yourself for 30 seconds. During that 30 seconds, count how many times your right foot hits the ground. If your number is 45 or above, that is great! If you are below 45, work on shortening your stride and turning your legs over a bit faster. 

You will benefit by increasing your stride rate. I can't stress how important proper cadence is, and the difference that it can make in your running. Working on this one thing can improve your form, speed, efficiency, and will help prevent injuries. 

After doing some research on the internet, I've found several other ways to improve your cadence:

1. Using Quick Short Strides
Run short strides (i.e. 20-30 meters) with very quick steps.  Most importantly, during this exercise, you should lift up your knees and go as fast as you can!  Remember high knees during sports practices and gym class?  This is why we do them.  To get harder, better, faster, and stronger!  Try to repeat this exercise about ten times in a row.

2. The fancier way---use a Metronome or similar device
My parents were both music teachers, so I am quite familiar with a metronome.  Its a simple mechanical device that keeps rhythm.  You can buy devices for running that don't look like the metronome my parents used.  Oh man, imagine carrying this around?

Tick, tick, tick, tick.  Man, that's what those bad boys used to look like.  Now there are metronomes for running that you can buy for cheap.  Here is one I found on Amazon for $17.  Its a Seiko DM50S Clip Digital Metronome in Silver.  Hey, this device might not be for everyone, but if you are serious about improving speed, this might be something you invest in. Check it out!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Florence + The Machine

Add Howl to your playlists. It pumps you up like woah!


Megan@marathondiaries is doing an awesome @Garmin 405 Giveaway- Enter here

She's beautiful, funny, and has a half marathon to complete in just a few weeks!

Boston Marathon weekend recap

What a weekend!  I have been going nonstop since september er, um friday, and its all because of the wonderful events that have taken part in the beautiful city of Boston!  First off, I ran 10 miles with Kristy on Friday, which went well, but could have gone better if I had stuck to my night before my long run routine.  It was hard to get myself to run fast and not stop.  Either way, once I got back, I had a little time to email companies asking for donation requests to my fundraising party.  So far, Trader Joe's and J. P. Licks, the best ice cream store in the WORLD, have signed up to say OK!  I babysat for the rest of the evening, then got back with very little time to sleep, only to get up for the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A) relay race challenge! (Also, please excuse the fact that I have very few pictures.  It was sometimes too awkward or too dark to take them....and then my camera died during the marathon, grrrr!)

We arrived with our team of kiddos ready to take charge!  It was a cold morning down at the finish line of the marathon, but I knew that the kids would make me proud and boy oh boy did they!  In each race we finished in 2nd or 3rd (out of 14 teams) and placed 3rd overall in our Mile Challenge relay team.  The kids were so happy with themselves because each year they get better, faster, and stronger!  They also won a medal and a Boston Marathon well as a sweet 3rd place trophy to take back to school!  Look how proud I am of my little ducklings!

That evening, I got dinner with the girls from grad school, at the new restaurant Lolita.  That place had great food, but it was too dark to take pictures because it was housed in a Vampire cave off of Newbury street.  Well, that's what the decor looked like at least!

The next day, I woke up to run 5 miles, clean my room, and then attend the Boston Marathon Expo at the Hynes Convention Center.  I bought myself a clif bar and shot blocks for my next long run.  The Expo just made me excited for the big event that was about to unfold the next day!

The next morning I got up super early to get down to the finish line of the Marathon in order to snag a stellar spot with my teammates, Leigh and Stef.  Although I may or may not have forgotten to make a sign for my coaches, Becca and Scott, there was a Walgreens close by so I went there and bought poster board and markers.  I then proceeded to make a fancy sign in the middle of the sidewalk. 

Sadly, its at this point that my camera died.  However, I did get a sweet shot of Caroline Kilel, the winner of the female division of the Boston Marathon. 

I was also able to take a picture of Kara Goucher, who is my ultimate running heroine.  She placed 5th but she beat her time when she placed 3rd, and she just had a baby 7 MONTHS AGO! I don't look that good or fast before, after, ever, when I'm dead.  And she had a baby then killed it in Boston.  Pffft.

Next is an attempt to take a picture of Skinny Runner because I felt like I was seeing a celebrity run by, but instead I got this picture:

and then. my camera died.  Bahhh. That was sad.

I saw EMZ the superhuman woman of running go by as well, but she was too fast for me to get my cracked out camera to do anything but say goodbye.  That woman is amazing, p.s.  Check out her blog.

I continued the rest of the day by meeting up with Cecilia Bunny.  We stayed out until about 7 o'clock where we were able to see the last place finishers for the race.  

That was a heart melting moment because you knew that even though it took those people 8 hours+ to complete the race, they did everything they could to get to the end.  One woman walked with her cane the entire way and then bent over to kiss the finish line.

I then saw two biggest loser contestants from Season 10!  Elizabeth and Brendan!  They were both from the area!  Cecilia got a pic with us and Brendan, but unfortunately I have nothing to document that I actually saw them!

Then, in every New Englander's awe and jealousy, we saw THE Tedy Bruschi run in with the last contestant!  She was raising money for his charity and he made sure to cross the finish line with her!  It was an amazing and emotional experience!

I want to give a big shout out to my coaches Becca and Scott, for being such inspirations.  I also want to give my congrats to my soccer teammate, Sam, who killed it with a finishing time of 3:25, and Andrew, one of our San Diego Team in Training running partners out of Southie for completing!

I cannot explain how amazing it was to see people I know and admire finish so strongly in the race.  I was also excited to see Ryan Hall beat the American Men's record.  I just want to get out there and kill it myself.  To experience the highs and the lows, and to know I did it myself.  I did this, I'm doing this, and I hope to make not only you, but myself proud!  I can't wait for my own marathon experiences in June!!!

Anyone else have any inspirational stories to share?  What keeps you motivated?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

I like my bass down low

Add it to your playlists, loves. Dev. Bass Down Low.

Green Monster (and not of the red sox variety!)

Ok, where have I been living?  I just discovered a smoothie called the Green Monster.  It's literally four ingredients and tastes like heaven (although I added chia seeds for a kick).  You could potentially make the smoothie with a different variety of fruit if you wanted, but here is what was on call for today. 

10 chunks of frozen mango
1 whole banana
2 handfuls of spinach
1 cup of vanilla unsweetened almond milk
chia seeds

Some people add protein powder, but girl, I ain't got none at the moment.  

Here now, is a ridiculous amount of photos showing you how to make the easiest recipe in the history of mankind.
And. I kid you not.  It tastes awesome.  Go mom go didn't believe me, but that's because she's not a believer.

And now, onto a photo montage of me and my green smoothie.

Delicioso! Good for recovery runs but also happened to be my lunch for today!
Now I'm off to the Hynes Convention Center for the Boston Marathon Expo!  Not that I'm running but seeing as how I live in Boston, where the expo is, I better get my butt in gear!

Listen, I already ran my 5 miles AND cleaned my entire room.  Although I didn't really finish cleaning my roomwhatever.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Dear Readers,
    This week has been full of MERGHS (working late, pain in leg, weird fortune, expensive bill) and YAHOOS (a better fit for all, start of april break yessss!)!

    Let me explain: First off. a Mergh:

Ok well it was pretty sweet when I got a mini package from go mom go that included sticky notes and these fortune gumballs.  The weird part was when I opened my love fortune.
It read:
"Your soul mate is the chubby one standing with the ice cream cone."

Uh. ok. Neat.

Merghs number two and three go hand in hand. First off, lots of work before vacation, meaning late nights with no chance to run.  Mergh.

Then, with no chance to run, the days that I did run, I experienced a lot of muscle pain in my shin/calf area.  Basically, I have an unstable ankle joint.

I kind of knew this about myself, because when I am on heels...although I'm quite comfortable in heels and came out of the womb in them, my ankle has always wobbled a little.

Ok, I've always noticed this, but what I didn't know is how it affects your running.  Basically, with the wrong type of shoe, the entire time I run, the more my ankle and calf are trying to stabilize my gait.  Its kind of like I run on stability balls.  Hey my calves might look beautiful but the more I train, the more this hurts and the more I have to stop.  BLERGH AND MERGH.

Why is that annoying?  Because I just got fitted for new shoes at Marathon Sports and this is the second time I have been burned by them!  Instead, I went to the South Boston Running Emporium to have my gait and arches looked at.  Bill, the owner, has run 30 marathons and still drinks like a fish.  I trust him, he's a straight shooter who hates barefoot running and speedwork.  His fastest race was a 2:40 finish when he was 21.  To this very day, although I don't know how old he is, but roughly 25-30 marathons later, he still ran Boston last year in 3:05.  

Ok so Bill checked out my swagger...

And just as I had hoped and feared....

I'm wearing the wrong frick frack shoe.  

This is me realizing I have bought shoes, and spent good money, on something that makes running harder for me, rather than helping.

Ahhh, even with my team and training discount at the Running Emporium, I still had to spend a lot of money on a new shoe.  But, as I told Bill and will tell all of you; I would rather spend that money then not be able to complete this.  I would rather run pain free and feel that high, then sit one out or have to walk because the tightness of my muscles makes it impossible for me to run.

So now, onto the YAHOOOSS!

This was me, after realizing that I'm in a better spot with my new shoes: 
The Asics Gel-Kayano.  In White and Blue.  Sadly, I knew pink shoes would be too good to be true.

Here is the review of my shoe (rhyming, holllaa) here at Runner's World.
Although, I've just pasted it basically for you below:

The Kayano's plush, foot-hugging comfort is a pleasant surprise in a shoe that offers so much impact protection. The heel packs a heap of Gel cushioning, providing a supportive landing pad for the foot and helping to make this update one of the heaviest shoes in this guide. Testers loved the Kayano's support and fit but were split in their opinions of the off-set lacing system, with an equal number loving and hating the way it wrapped the forefoot. Recommended as a stable, well-cushioned everyday training shoe.

I don't know about the reviewers, but I think the off-set lacing system gives it street cred.  Makes them look bad donkey.  

Did any of you get that joke?

I work in schools give me a break.

Ok another Yahoo is, that, its school vacation!
Because of this, I get to sleep for a whole week, rest up, relax, enjoy the Boston Marathon, cheer for my coaches, cheer for Skinny Runner, cheer for myself, run 16 miles next saturday, and give myself a break in the sunshine!

Also, here is a pizza I heated up ala Trader Joe's, but added some pizzazz to it, to make it more satisfying.

It was a veggie pizza for 250 calories.  I added apple chicken sausage and some goat cheese for flavor.  Delish!

Tomorrow, I am getting in a 10 mile run with Kristy and Saturday I'm coaching the B.A.A. running relay team!  

And remember kids...whatever you do, if you're training for an important race, big or small, the right shoe is the MONEY MAKER!


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