Friday, September 25, 2009

Friday food thoughts, and other random stuff

Sometimes I wonder if the reason I gained weight last year was because I did so many races, and almost every one had a pre-race restaurant pasta dinner and a post-race cinnamon roll (or other breakfast treat). When it gets to the point of doing this almost every week (or so it seems in retrospect)...well, you have to wonder, don't you?

This year I haven't done nearly as many races, and very few have had pre-race restaurant dinners. The post-race treats have been a little more conservative too, I think. That's not to say there hasn't been some self-indulgence in the name of carb-loading and/or recovery. That's actually got me a little worried as this weekend is the third race weekend in a row for me. I think I've pretty much kept my eating in check, though, or at least within the range of reason (I think).

This weekend there will be a pre-race dinner tomorrow night, though. My mom and I are going up to the Fairhaven Village Inn in Bellingham to stay for the weekend, till Monday. The Fairhaven Inn is not right in the vicinity of the race, but I wanted to stay there for the Waterfront 15K two weeks ago and was too late to get reservations, so we're making up for it with this one. Yes, it is true, I basically signed up for this half marathon so I could stay in a hotel in Bellingham. Call it a substitute for an autumn trip to Maine....

So anyhow, we'll go to one of the Italian restaurants in Fairhaven for dinner Saturday night. On Sunday after the race there will have to be something for breakfast, but the post-race treat of the day will be English-style fish and chips from a converted red English double-decker bus.

Honestly, Fairhaven has so many appealing restaurants, you could find places for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, and dessert and still have places you missed. It always makes me regret missed opportunities to eat! (And you wonder why I worry about gaining weight....)

I'm experimenting with a pre-pre-race pasta dish tonight, using my delicious squash soup as a sauce for mushroom ravioli (they were on sale, that's how I chose them).* And last night I made a batch of Pear & Zucchini Bread (just like zucchini bread, plus with pears). It's quite tasty, and I am counting on the pears displacing some of the oil and sugar in the recipe!

Even though I am tapering today, I did go to the Y this morning for 90 minutes on the elliptical.** That was primarily an effort to counteract all the various goodies that have been passing through my mouth*** (in hopes that they would not take up permanent residence in my fat cells). Tomorrow I am really resting my legs, though, no exercise substitutes allowed! We'll be heading up to Fairhaven and getting settled into the hotel, and picking up my race packet for Sunday, and that should be the extent of the day's activities (except for walking to dinner).

Today and tomorrow were my only tapering attempts, though. I did eight miles with speedwork (8 x 400/half mile intervals) on Wednesday, and ten miles pretty easy with three one-mile pick-ups at roughly race pace (about 8:45) interspersed throughout the run on Thursday (yesterday). There was going to be a fourth "fast" mile immediately after the third, but about halfway through I was flying past Tully's Coffee and caught my foot on their sidewalk sign and fell pretty hard. Amazingly, I did not draw any blood. My only lasting injury is a small bruise on the heel of my palm. My almost-first thought as I fell, along with "I hope I don't scrape myself up or rip my pants," was "the Garmin is still running"! I didn't stop it until after I caught my breath and assured the people who ran out of Tully's asking if I was all right that I was, in fact, fine. So instead of 8:30, my time for that mile was around 9:30...not too bad when you consider everything that happened in those nine and a half minutes in addition to running.

I didn't write a title for this post until I was just about finished. I couldn't really think of anything clever, but I did notice that I was writing about food an awful lot. Hence, my lame selection of a title. I'll try to do better next time. :)

So. Have a great weekend, everyone, and well wishes to all the 10K and half marathon and marathon runners out there!

*Post-dinner follow-up: The mushroom ravioli with kabocha squash "sauce" was delicious. I also peeled and diced a delicata squash and roasted the pieces at 425 degrees until they were soft and a little browned, and stirred it into the ravioli and sauce. Truly scrumptious, at least if you are a squash aficionado! I used it as a side dish, served on a bed of arrugula (because I eat almost everything on a bed of greens), with a store-bought roasted chicken and another side of Oven Roasted Broccoli. And a piece of Pear Zucchini bread for dessert.

**I had a haircut appointment at 9 a.m., and the hair salon is near the Y, so I decided to take a shower and get dressed at the Y instead of making an unnecessary trip home. Since I do live so close, less than a mile away, I never usually do this. In fact, in the mornings I often don't even use the bathroom in the locker room, thereby avoiding altogether the women getting ready for work. But today I had no choice but to brave the locker room and the thing I go to all lengths to avoid—locker room nudity. Not just my own, but everyone else's too. Really, there is no modesty in this world. People (women) just walk around with parts of their body hanging out that have no business being anything but covered (and often restrained in some way). Myself, I prefer not to expose anything that isn't absolutely necessary. When I am not actually in the act of dressing/undressing/showering, I make sure to have a towel or clothing on me. It's only fair to the rest of the locker room occupants, I think.

***We won't even mention the Costco Chocolate Cake I ate at Drug Court graduation today....


Julie said...

LOL! I just popped in from the Athena Diaries and had to comment. First off being a "foodie" love all your food talk, but I really had to comment on the locker room. Last year I was doing a lot of swimming first thing in the morning at the Rec center near my house and the average age of the rest of the people there was 78 I would guess. I was amazed at how these 80ish year old women had absolutely no inhibitions about walking around with nothing on and rubbing lotion on each other, yea not really my cup of tea either!

By the way I enjoyed reading and will look forward to reading some older posts.

Good luck on your race!

MCM Mama said...

All that food talk! YUM!! And I'm so jealous you are staying Bellingham. I really want to get back there again some day.

Kristin said...

You need to come for the Fairhaven 15K or Bellingham Bay Half or Marathon next year... they are both wonderful races and a lovely time of year!