Monday, September 29, 2008

Weekend Revisited

As the weekend comes to a close, I sit back to assess the things that were NOT accomplished this weekend. Although every moment was spent "doing" something, most of these doings were not relevant to actual existing tasks at hand. Oh well. Food related excursions were exciting; Friday was payday which naturally means how many meals out can I have this weekend before I feel guilty? The answer is.. a lot. Friday night consisted of a lovely indulgent burger, fries and beer meal at Brewer's Art. This was really the most accessible joint on Friday as the weather was not exactly inviting. The rain was incessant and put a damper on any out of borough excursion; therefore we stuck it out in Mt Vernon as opposed to the original Hamilton Tavern plan. The garlic and rosemary fries at Brewer's can mend any dismal soul but not this weekend; they spent one too many minutes in the fryer and perhaps hung out under a heat lamp for like 30 too many minutes. Oh well, I ate them all anyways. I don't know why I bother being negative about it, I still gobbled up every single fried sliver so obviously they weren't THAT bad. I opted for the veggie burger instead of the regular massive "burger" burger and was not disappointed. It was still very filling but not quite as moist and rich in flavor...but that's expected when you compare red meat to veggies. Again, I ate it all anyway. Washed it all down with a couple Ressurections; definitely the highlight of the meal. Serves as a great dessert in my opinion :)

Workout on Friday (this was of course before the dinner described above) was almost quite as intense as the night's outing. The goal was 8x 600 at 5K pace. I somehow knew that was NOT going to happen because I would end up going out way too fast and be way faster than 5K pace; which inevitably happened. So I modified it slightly and completed 5x600 and 3x400. Recovery was pretty inconsistent due to the numerous bathroom breaks but was generally between 75 seconds and 2 minutes...

10 min warm-up
1:55, 1:58, 2:00, 2:01, 1:58
1:17, 1:14, 1:12
10 min cool down

I couldn't tell you if this was really tailored as a 5K workout, it appears to have been more of a miler workout perhaps? Only because the pace was not even remotely close to my 5K pace. But I'm still learning...

Saturday dining was fairly minimal in terms of culinary excitement. Started the day with a homemade breakfast sandwich post-run; toasted wheat bagel with egg over hard, fresh tomato, cucumber, swiss, and wilted spinach.

60min tempo? run
Map of my run

The run was ridiculously soggy; rain came down the duration of my hour long run. About 8 miles...just gmapped it (see above). No extraordinary foodie dining to report on Saturday night; again, the rain was non-stop and I went to a party having not eaten dinner so we made an impromptu visit to Pasta Mista in Canton/Brewer's Hill area. I had no idea there was a Pasta Mista there, I was under the impression the one in Towson was the lone location. Anyways, I splurged on two jumbo slices; some sort of eggplant, pepper duo and a standard veggie slice with broccolini, etc. Certainly filled me up and fit my price range so I was happy; 2 massive slices for unedr $5.

Took a much needed day off from running today and indulged in a decadent brunch with the sis and Saki in Bethesda at Mon Ami Gabi. I have always liked this place but had not been there for brunch. Saki and I had sort of decided on this locale for brunch out of sheer convenience but out of the Bethesda/Chevy Chase options I think this may have been one of the best. To start, the champagne cart and Bloody Mary bar were a fun spin on the traditional brunch drinks. The bloody mary's were mixed by the patron themself; the vodka is provided straight and can be dressed per the individual's preference at the bloody mary bar full of fixin's ranging from hot sauces, olices, horseradish, celery, etc. Of course each drink will put you back the same price of your actual entree but hey, I guess one is worth it? I settled on a mushroom, asparagus quiche which was fine...a little overcooked and over-spinached in my opinion. I totally forgot there was supposed to be other vegetables in it. "Over-spinaching" seemed to be the term of the day because my sister's three cheese and spinach crepe was the leafiest crepe I have ever seen. There may as well have not even been cheese in it. But I helped her finish it so it all worked out. We dabbled with the regular dinner menu as well ordering a mozzarella and tomato sauce? dip of sorts. We each had about one baguette a piece; no surprise as we are all carb-fiends. haha.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Shhh...I'm at work ;)

So- I have NOT updated my many adoring fans in quite some time. I don't know how all of you have been able to function without my daily tidbits of my foodie and running anecdotes about Baltimore! So a lot has taken place in the last couple weeks; I ran my half-marathon in Philly last weekend, it is now officially autumn, track pre-season has started for Towson... All are very exciting things. Let me begin by reporting on my fantabulous stay in Philadelphia last weekend for the Philly Distance Run.

The brigade started our journey in Delaware where the XC team had a morning meet. Some very impressive performances across the board; a couple top course times by our girls, so a great start to a great weekend. We headed off to Philly from there; a mere hour long trek from Newark, DE. Once we got in, we vegged for a bit before deciding on what to do for dinner. I of course had to pick up my packet down at the convention center. Once that was out of the way, we proceeded to Tavern 17 on 17th street near Rittenhouse square. We dined outside as the interior seating was not dog-friendly but that’s okay because sidewalk seating is much more entertaining. We happened upon this particular contemporary bistro because of their special doggie treat menu! For all you dog lovers, this place is more than accommodating; Cecilia ordered a big bowl of ground turkey. Every morsel of ground turkey was devoured in seconds- I could say the same thing about my dinner too.

I decided on a scrumptious sushi-esque seared tuna sandwich with a light wasabi dressing and mixed greens on toasted sesame bread. Although the taste was spectacular, the actual durability of the sandwich was a little problematic. It was the kind of sandwich where with each bite you lose a chunk of something out the other side so you are perpetually reassembling each half as you eat. And not to mention the bread was a bit tough, eventually leading to a raw roof of mouth; we all know how uncomfortable that can be. Don’t you fret, it was soothed by melt in your mouth yet still crispy French fries. Overall a splendid experience!

With the help of the iPhone, we searched for nearby gelaterias and happened upon CAPOGIRO GELATO on 13th and Sansom? All I can say is damn- that gelato is phenomenal. Certainly rivals that of Pitango here in Baltimore which to me has been the best gelato I have had since my trip to Italy. The flavors were so obtrusive but in a good way at Capogiro. Everything I tried was dripping with flavor and unique tastes in the form of gelato. So you may think this is weird, but I decided on the macadamia nut and basil gelato. It was decadent; the nutty flavor of the macadamia in cohorts with the soothing basil was a perfect blend. The boyfriend went a much simpler but still spectacular route with one flavor: straight chocolate banana. So freakin good. By now, the basset was ready to get back to the hotel as was I since I had a race to prepare for…whatever ;)

Race day was great; headed up to the start, happened upon the other Baltimorean running mates from Falls Road and did a quick jaunt with them prior to the start. I started out with Jen but by the 5K or 4th mile, I decided to pick it up a bit. The weather was nice and I felt good; I was hoping to run at least 7:30 pace and finish around 1:40-ish. I ended up well under that time averaging a 6:50 or so finishing in 1:30.07. Here are my splits:

7:10 (21:19 3mile)
7:04 (34:34 5mile)
6:40 (1hr:09 for 10mile)
7:05 (1.1 miles)

So much fun. I certainly hope to run another half someday; perhaps the Philly distance run again. Very well organized race.

Post race, dog, boyfriend and I enjoyed cheesesteaks from both Geno’s and Pat’s…they sucked, enough said. Honestly, the cheesesteaks from Never on Sunday are better.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Memoirs of Baltimore Runners

I had an epiphany today. Wouldn't it be neat if someone documented unique stories of Baltimore runners? Their running routes, their running-related rituals (pre-run/post-run) either for a race or the average long run, favorite places to eat after running, this also could fall under rituals, even just the weird quirks of local runners in Baltimore; in essence an extension of the typical oddities of Baltimore

During a medium run this morning, I ran into a runner a third of the way through his long run (about 12 miles total). We hit Druid Hill together and headed back through Bolton Hill; a run that would have been dreadful, especially in the heat, had it been by myself. He made a comment about his favorite post-long run activity during our run- " All I can think about is my cold gatorade and the greasy lunch waiting for me; after my nap of course." He goes on to tell me that after most long runs he frequents a local bar for a tasty saturated meal for replenishment. This got me thinking; what other weird things do runners do here in Baltimore? It's worth mentioning that during this run with this stranger, I was able to see parts of Baltimore right near me that I had never explored; the Jones Falls trail and how it leads right to Druid Hill. Craziness!

I am just very inspired by the intracies of others around me; especially those that run. Why do they run? So they can eat? So they feel a since of accomplishment? To win? To stay in shape? My answer most definitely is to eat...As of recently, I have been very lax with my intake; allowing myself to indulge on anything and everything. After especially intense and heavy meals, this inspires me even further to exercise. Is it healthy? I don't know. I'm not overdoing it so I feel as though it's okay.

First "Memoir of a Baltimore Runner":

Training for: 7th straight Baltimore Marathon
Location: Locust Point
Training quirk: Refuses to run with a water belt or camel back for long runs, instead carries an extra large gatorade bottle.
Favorite post-run meal: bar food and gatorade
Favorite Baltimore run: (not actually sure of this answer so I am using today's run for this; Fort McHenry -Harbor- up Charles- Druid Hill via Jones Falls Trail- Bolton Hill back to Charles- to Locust Point
Training Run Link

I would like to elaborate on these memoirs; give me some more question ideas...

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Long time no post. Currently watching Project Runway, can't wait to see these designs on the runway. Diane Von Furstenberg is the guest celebrity and they got to sample her fabrics; what a beautiful sundry of prints and whimsical colors. So, I FINALLY went grocery shopping but very sparingly. Dog, boy and I trekked to Trader Joe's in Towson; I get my fruit and veggies and Ross goes for his pie and ice cream. I will try and not finish the pie tonight ;) The primary reason for our mini shopping trip was for granola bar ingredients, and the essentials of course...the pie being one of them, ha. On a repeat of Good Eats the other week, I spotted a recipe that seemed too good to be true; Alton whipped up some healthy homemade alternative granola bars and some other nutritionals. I'll probably make this for the XC team tomorrow so they can chomp em after their race on Friday.

Workout today with the team-
8 min warm up?
800m indian run/ pick-up
4x400 @ 72-75, 90 sec. rest
20 min cool down (team did 10 min)

Back track on last couple days of training; I have only had time to train with the team and nothing additional. 30 min run Saturday; no run Sunday; 1600-1200-1000 mini ladder on back field on Monday; 30 min run on Tuesday. Tuesday's recovery run was tough in the heat; definitely have NOT been drinking enough water.

OH! Went to Golden West Cafe last night and had the tilapia taco special. Loved it. edgy spices in the salsa, light drizzle of creme sauce and ginormous chunks of tomatoes; my favorite. AND they actually substituted corn tortillas instead of flour! You've got to remember, they are a NO substitutes kind of place :)