Glute Glory

Good morning!  Yesterday started bright and early because I had to retrieve my dog at 7 am so that my mom could finish up her long run without having to drag along a tired canine.  After we got home, I whipped up a delicious stack of healthy pancakes with fruit, maple syrup, and peanut butter.  Perfect Saturday breakfast 🙂

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Since I didn’t have a run yesterday, I was itching to do something endorphin-y after a morning of chauffeuring my brothers through typical Northern Virginia traffic to their various activities.  So I brainstormed, browsed Pinterest, and came up with a new strength workout to do after a quick 30-minute bike session.

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Yes, I did include stick figure drawings to remind me what some of the exercises were 😉

This workout works the whole core, but especially the glutes.  Sometimes, I feel like runners can get stuck in the 10-minute-ab-circuit trap and forget to work the other parts of their core.  The glutes are especially neglected, even though they are one of the most important muscle groups for efficient form and power in running!  They help stabilize the body, extend the hip, and propel you forward as you run.  Additionally, females have wider hips than males and are therefore more prone to instability and knee and hip problems because we are farther away from that “straight-line” ideal.

See why it’s important to strengthen the glutes?  I promise that this workout will leave your glutes burning.  In the best way.  By the time I got to the side plank leg raises, my body was shaking.

Next post will recap the first week of “summer”!

 

Teeth! LDOC workout! Eats!

But first: GUESS WHAT– I GOT MY PERMANENT TEETH YESTERDAY!!  RIP to the denture life!!

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After crushing a stressful formal business presentation that our group had been working on for two months, I headed to my dentist to get the teeth.  Then it was back to school to prepare for a Spanish presentation.  And no, I haven’t eaten an apple yet 😉

Anyway, happy last day of classes!  I actually did not have class today, but I spent the morning finishing a final paper for one of my Spanish classes before getting ready for the last Friday afternoon workout of the year.  (Meanwhile, it seemed as though everyone else at school was partaking in the last day of classes tradition of day-drinking…)

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It was a hot one- 88 degrees and very sunny- so I wasn’t sure how the workout was going to go.  But we prepared well and were very vigilant about hydrating and icing throughout, so it ended up going well!

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Oats, almond milk, shredded zucchini, egg whites, spices, blueberries, strawberries, and banana

Pre-workout breakfast: probably the biggest bowl of (z)oats I’ve ever made, plus a fried egg.  I kind of forgot to shake out this morning, but oh well.  Yesterday’s practice was a scavenger hunt that was more like a 7-mile fartlek, so my legs were trashed and probably benefited from the extra recovery!

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The best way to use all the peanut butter in the jar

The workout: 2.5 mile warm-up, drills, strides, 3 x 600 (400 @ 80 and kick the last 200, I ran 36-37) with 2:30 recovery, 6 x 400 at cruise pace (~83) with 1 minute recovery, 4 x 400 with 2 min recovery (77, 77, 77, 75), 2 mile cool down, rope stretch, ice bath.  I stayed hydrated before and after with coconut water, Nuun, and a variation of the “Can’t Beet Me” smoothie from Run Fast Eat Slow.

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1/2 frozen banana, frozen raspberries, steamed beets, fresh ginger, almond milk, vanilla protein powder, and a splash of coconut water

After the workout, our team went out for dinner before having fun with our annual paper plate awards and senior celebration.  My friend and I split a roasted beet salad and prosciutto garlic tomato pizza.

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And my paper plate award was pretty accurate- I will admit that sometimes I get a little competitive/aggressive…

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I’m going to be training through the conference championships with the rest of the team, mostly to give me something to do over finals.  My finals schedule includes two small projects due next week, but no actual exams until May 10!  I’m hoping to be able to travel to watch the team compete at conferences next weekend 🙂

Transparency time: Lately, there have been a couple instances where I’ve struggled mentally with eating a lot of rich food and not having my stomach/digestion behave perfectly.  I don’t count calories or macros or whatever (I’ve experimented with MyFitnessPal in the past, but our bodies know what they’re doing.  It’s our brains that screw everything up 😉 but I know that I perform better when I eat a lot.  For goodness’ sake, I just ran a 5k 90 seconds faster than I was running two years ago!  It’s just mentally hard sometimes to eat twice as much as everyone around you.

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IDK why I’m including this picture- I just like it

I’m just trying to remind myself of how much fuel we need to fuel the work that we’re doing.  It is ALWAYS better to overfuel than to under-fuel.  There are myriad examples that show how underfueling doesn’t work, ever.  And skillet cookies and mac and cheese will really just help this body handle mileage, intensity, and hot weather even better, right??  I’ll take that over miserably munching on raw vegetables and ignoring hunger cues any day.  The other day, we did clearances for next year, and I found out my weight for the first time in like two years.  And guess what?   It hasn’t changed at all since the first day of my freshman year of college.  Not that weight means anything at all- I’m way more efficient and can run a sub-18 minute 5k and do 20 chin-ups and handle 60 miles per week now- but I’m just saying our bodies are so smart and everyone has a go-to natural body weight and we need to eat a lot!

(Did that make any sense?  No?  It’s fine.)

Anyway, just a few finals, projects, and induction into the collegiate Spanish national honor society to get through before I am halfway done with undergrad!  I’ll be a junior in college before I know it.  Isn’t that crazy??  Sometimes it feels like I just got here!!

Weekly Recap + brownie batter oatmeal

Good morning!  After a restless night’s sleep, I woke up way too early this morning (as usual) and went to the locker room to do some yoga and core before sitting down to an incredible breakfast.  I’m taking a much-needed off day from running because my body is complaining loudly.

Today’s agenda includes the usual Sunday laundry, chores, homework, errands, and a Super Bowl party at a friend’s apartment.  My goal for today (and this week in general) is to get ahead on schoolwork so I have more time to focus on doing all the little things, contributing to extracurriculars, and starting to prepare for midterms!

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Brownie batter oatmeal: 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 mashed banana, 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder, and 3 tbsp egg whites.  I added a heaping spoonful of Trader Joe’s chia/flax peanut butter.

Anyway, here is a recap of the past week of training:

Week of 1/30-2/5:

Monday: AM: 7 miles trails, tired so took it kind of relaxed, core routine.  PM: 2 lap warm-up, hurdle drills, 1.5 mile run, hurdle/stride work after and tweaked my right glute.  Total: 9 miles.
Tuesday: 2 mile w/u, 5 x 800 with 1:30-2:30 recovery (2:55, 2:52, 2:51, 2:51, 2:50) last one retro, 20 min c/d.  10 parallel pull-ups.  Stim/ice on glute, NormaTec boots 20 minutes.  Total: 7 miles.
Wednesday: 60 min pool (30 aqua jog, 30 swim).  Sleep-deprived but progressively better.
Thursday: AM: 2 lap w/u, drills/speed ladder, 8 miles fast-ish, 4 x 100m strides, upper body lift in weight room.  PM: 2 miles + foam rolling.  Started using new shoes.
Friday: AM: 2 mile shakeout.  Tight/tired but progressively better.  PM: 20 min w/u, drills/strides, 3 x [4×400] with 60/90/2min rec and a lap between sets (81, 82, 81, 81, 78, 76, 76, 77, 76, 76, 76, 72), 3 mile cool down, ice bath
Saturday: 10 miles on trails.  Terrible.
Sunday: no running; 40 min yoga/stretching/core

Total: 47 miles + 60 min XT + yoga

Honesty time!! I definitely increased the mileage and intensity too fast.  Running-wise, I went from normal mileage (around 55) to 9 miles to 35 miles to 47 miles and workouts.  This is partly my fault, partly my coach’s fault.  Anyway, my body hurts.  Like, everywhere.  Legs are heavy, bunions are killing me, hip flexor is complaining a lot, and everything is tight.  Which is why I’m taking an unplanned off day today!

Sleep was terrible.  Ugh.  I don’t know what else I can do.  I just…don’t sleep.  I journal every night, try to unwind, and go to bed at 10, but I still end up not sleeping.  I feel like I’m wasting time and it’s completely avoidable and hampering recovery and it makes me ANGRY.

On a positive note, both of this week’s workouts were solid!  Also, my roommate ran her first indoor race in two years last night and absolutely crushed it.  She’s had a rough couple months and was so nervous and didn’t believe in herself, even though there were no expectations for this race.  But in the second half, she really came alive and dropped the hammer.  It was awesome to see.  I’m so proud and excited for her.

Throughout the past week, I reapplied to the business school, joined Women’s Initiative in Leadership, and applied (and got accepted) to Spoon University!  I will be researching, writing, and publishing articles about food- and college-related topics, and I’m so excited.

Gotta go get my laundry so that’s all for now!  I hope everyone has a great Super Bowl Sunday!

400 meter repeats

Greetings from my bed, where I will be spending the rest of this #lit Friday night.  I don’t have class on Fridays, so after completing a quick two-mile shakeout and savoring the luxury of having time to make my favorite oatmeal breakfast, I spent a quality day with my accounting textbook, legal textbook, and Spanish paper before heading to practice.

We had a track workout today (my first full one back!), and afterwards a group of us went out to dinner! Dinner was delicious, and not what I usually eat!– I had a gyro on pita with lots of tzatziki sauce, a mountain of french fries with ketchup, and a cannoli– but I think I went a little overboard with the dairy today.  That, coupled with a hard track effort and first ice bath in awhile, has made my stomach feel less than stellar.  So I’m just going to drink some tea and watch Chicago Fire and get ready for the long run bright and early tomorrow morning 🙂

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(Stole this photo from my friend’s Facebook)

Anyway!  Today’s track workout marked the first full workout I’ve done in three weeks!  On Tuesday, one of my teammates and I did 5 x 800 (2:55, 2:52, 2:51, 2:51, 2:50) and felt good about the paces but was sore for days afterwards.  But that was not quite a full workout 😉  Today, most of the team was either doing their pre-meet run and strides in preparation for their races tomorrow, but five of us were on the track.

The workout was straightforward: 20 minute warm-up; drills; strides; 3 sets of [4×400] with a lap on the turf in between sets; 3 mile cool down.  The first set was at 5k pace (82) with 60 seconds recovery, second set was at 3k pace (78) with 90 seconds recovery, and last set was around mile pace or faster (76) with 2 minutes recovery.

Set 1: 81, 82, 81, 81
Set 2: 78, 76, 76, 77
Set 3: 76, 76, 76, 72

It was very gray and gloomy the whole time, but we had a blast.  I was very pleased with the workout.  It was definitely hard and a bit of a shock to these legs that have gotten complacent with being slow-twitch over the past three weeks, but I felt comfortable hitting the times!  Our group of three worked very well together, and the longer rest really helped us continue to feel good as the intervals got faster.

On the last interval, our coach had all five of us start together in a kind of “free for all”, and they took it out hard.  The last 150 was one of the longest 150 meter stretches I’ve ever run in my life.  The lactic acid was brutal… But I split a 72, so that was a nice rust-buster!  If only I could hold that for 7.5 laps to run a 9:00 3k 😉 (or even just one 4:48 mile would be nice.)

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Also stolen from friend’s Facebook

Total mileage for the day was around 11, counting the morning shakeout.  Working out with teammates is awesome.  I love it.  I missed it so much.  Today was a surprise confidence booster and showed me that my fitness is still in a good place.  See- pool workouts really do work!!

Pool workout: benefits of cross training!

When you have no Friday classes but still wake up naturally at 6 am and do a 70 minute pool workout…

The workout:

12 lap warm-up (lap = down and back)
4 x [6 laps hard/steady, 2 laps easy]
6 x [sprint down, easy back]
2 laps easy
5 x [submarine* down, easy back]
13 lap cool down

Total: 70 laps (3500 meters)

*submarine means swim under the water for as long as you can without taking a breath.  If you can make it all the way down, congrats– you are my idol!  This part of the workout made me breathe so hard, I thought my heart was going to come out of my chest.

The workout took about 70 minutes, and then I sat in the sauna and stretched for a bit.  Afterwards, I ate my pre-packed breakfast (chocolate banana overnight oats with plain nonfat Greek yogurt and peanut butter) before heading to the training room to do STIM and ice.  My feet are feeling a lot better while walking around, but it’s important not to push the impact too much too soon! Now I’m chilling in my favorite campus coffee shop, drinking coffee with almond milk and blogging instead of reading my accounting textbook 😉

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Cross training picture from the summer

Anyway, I thought I’d talk about some benefits of cross training!  When you’re injured, or fighting off little setbacks, there’s no excuse to not put in the work even if you can’t run.  (On the other hand, if you’re sick or have a serious injury, it’s absolutely okay to take some time off and give your body the rest it needs).

My go-to forms of cross training include the stationary bike, aqua jogging (don’t use the belt!), and swimming.  Our coach doesn’t love the elliptical, so we tend not to use it.

A few benefits of cross training:

  1. Reduces impact on your feet/joints.  If you’re in the middle of a high-intensity training block and your feet are screaming at you to quit pounding out 10 miles on the sidewalks every day (hey, relatable!), getting in the pool or on the bike can help you get in some volume in without risking injury.  It puts less stress on the weaker or more vulnerable parts of your body that are worn down by the constant pounding from running.
  2. Increases endurance, efficiency, and power.  As I said, some parts of this morning’s pool workout made me breathe harder than track workouts!  Good cross training form in the pool and on the bike also leads to greater efficiency by strengthening knee drive, arm swing, etc.
  3. Prevents burnout.  I’ll be the first to admit it– there are some days where I wake up and dread the day’s run.  “I don’t want to, I don’t want to, I hate running.”  Even if you are the world’s biggest lover of running, you’re not going to have a positive attitude every day.  However, throwing in a few cross training sessions can refresh your mind and body and keep your love for running going strong.  You look forward to something different, and you also end up looking forward to the next run because you had a day away from it!

Those are the biggest benefits for me.  There are myriad others, but I don’t want to make this post into a novel, so I hope the few that I mentioned will be helpful!

Sweet Potato Waffle

A few weeks ago, I purchased a new waffle maker to take back to school (and for future apartments), mostly thanks to Christmas sales and gift cards.  A few days ago, delayed-onset post-workout hunger resulted in the inauguration of the waffle maker via sweet potatoes 🙂

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The workout was 3 mile warm-up, 3 x [9 minute progression (pick up the pace every 3 minutes), 5 minutes “off”], 2 mile cool down.  I was lucky enough to be able to work out with two teammates!

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After the coldest week of winter, the weather decided to be beautiful!  It was 40 degrees and partly cloudy.  We went to the canal, warmed up for 3 miles (verryyy fast) and did drills.  The first 9-minute segment started a little faster than I wanted to, and I’m not sure if I actually progressed or just maintained! Oops.  Overall, I was feeling pretty stiff and mentally not in it.

I struggled throughout the second segment because I wasn’t feeling too great physically and just got in my own head, but my lovely teammates helped me through it.  Once the last set was halfway over, I finally realized “I can do this!” and had a great last 5 minutes.  Better late than never, right?

The post-workout fatigue hit hours later, and after lunch, a dentist appointment, and a quick power nap, I woke up starving.  Scrolling through the #wafflewednesdays on Instagram for five seconds secured my decision– sweet potato waffle!!

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I completely eyeballed ingredient measurements, but here’s a rough estimate:

  • 3/4 cup baked sweet potato, mashed
  • 2 egg whites
  • splash of vanilla
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup oats
  • sprinkle of cinnamon

Mix everything together and pour into a preheated waffle maker.  Difficult, right? 😉

(Adding regular wheat flour probably would’ve helped it firm up a bit, but I didn’t want to.)

As you can see, I topped mine with plain nonfat Greek yogurt, Wild Friends sugar cookie peanut butter, and semisweet chocolate chips.  Delicious.  And a good mixture of protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats- a perfect, indulgent post-workout snack!

 

 

Snowy mile repeats (6:09, 6:02, 6:00, 5:57)

Today marked the first snow of the year!  We had a workout on the schedule, but I’ve learned that the weather doesn’t care what your running plans are. 😉  The first flurries began to fall around 7 am and got progressively heavier as the day progressed.

My friend and I met up around 10:30 for our workout and ran three miles to the track to warm up.  It was 20 degrees outside with a “real feel” of eight.  To these Virginians, that was like the arctic tundra! (I’m sure all the Midwesterners/Northerners out there are laughing at us, but so be it.)

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Sorry, my phone’s in Spanish, but I wasn’t lying about the eight degrees thing

I layered up in tights, a long-sleeve tech shirt, an ear warmer, a sweatshirt, and light gloves.  My tightly tied sweatshirt hood did not leave my head the entire time, and my extremities quickly lost all feeling…

Keeping it real— honestly, neither my running buddy nor I were in the mood to do this workout.  The weather didn’t help.  I had a long day yesterday and actually fell asleep at 7:30 pm last night and woke up terribly disoriented two hours later.  I was groggy and exhausted this morning and my piriformis was hurting a lot and I almost called my coach and asked if I could please not do today’s workout.  We’ve both been working pretty much full-time throughout this entire break, and we sometimes feel burnt out.  5 am solo runs get old real quick.

But!!  Knowing that I had a running buddy counting on me forced me to get out the door.  And it’s not like this workout was optional.  We got to the track, and there were only a few other crazy souls out there braving the elements.  We did drills, and then it was time for the workout: 4-5 x mile with 2 minutes of recovery.  We agreed to start conservatively, get through 4 miles, and only do the fifth one if we were feeling amazing and if the weather cooperated.

The track got treacherous quickly as we went through the workout.  The first two miles flew by with relative ease (6:09 and 6:02).  My partner struggled to stay positive; the snow had picked up to the point where we couldn’t see anything, and the track was getting more and more slippery.  My eyebrows and clothes froze.

We hit 6:00 flat for the third mile, and I was feeling great!  Compared to the very short recovery in the past few workouts, two minutes was a luxury.  The last mile was a 5:57, and we called it a day because of the conditions on the track.  I finished the workout feeling counterintuitively cheerful.  It was eight degrees, blizzarding, and by all accounts miserable outside, but I had just crushed a workout that I really hadn’t wanted to do!  The effort had been comparatively conservative, too!

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The cool down was probably harder than the workout as the sidewalks had become un-runable over the past hour.  It took us awhile to get back.  But warming up inside afterwards was that much better. 🙂  I literally had icicles hanging from my eyelashes!!

Of course there will be some days where running just sucks.  It’s the nature of the beast.  But most of the time, you feel drastically better after a run or workout than before!  Getting out there is honestly the hardest part.  I’m so thankful that I had a running buddy to brave the snow and crush the track workout with me today– without each other, we probably would’ve either laid in bed or cried through some repeats on the treadmill.

And afterwards, I got together with two of my best friends from high school before one of them leaves to go back to school tomorrow.  We intended to play Scrabble and Bananagrams and do yoga, but we ended up just sitting and talking for two and a half hours!  Why does that always happen?? 😉

Workout Wednesday: Long tempo and pick-ups

I can finally write a snazzy-titled “Workout Wednesday” post!  My workouts are always on Tuesdays and Fridays, but I shifted my schedule to accommodate work. 🙂

Anyway, today marked the first workout back; it’s been almost two months since our last workout, so this was a great shock to the body.

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The workout: 3 mile warm-up, drills, 30 minute progressive tempo, 3 minute recovery, 4 x [60 seconds hard, 60 seconds easy], and 2-3 mile cool down.  I asked my friend to keep me company, which he did– major props because not many people would voluntarily run an 11 mile workout without having to!

We warmed up for three miles on the canal towpath and then did dynamic drills.  Due to completing my leg lift yesterday, it took awhile for my glutes and hamstrings to quit complaining!

The goal for the tempo was to keep it kind of conversational for the first half (~6:40s) and progress through the second half and hit the low 6:00s.  However…we started a little fast (around 6:15 pace).  We ran the entire tempo into the wind.  He struggled a little in the first half, and I struggled a little in the second half, but we were able to work together and finish 4.6-4.7 miles in 30 minutes for an average pace of 6:22.  Afterwards, we did 4 x [60, 60], and my legs couldn’t quite remember how to turn over quickly. 😉  We then cooled down for 2 miles for a total of 11ish for the day.

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Post-workout lunch: homemade kale pesto penne, steamed green beans, broiled fish, tomatoes, freshly grated Parmesan cheese (I also grated my hand while grating the cheese, so that was pleasant), tomatoes, roasted Brussels sprouts and carrots, and unpictured 2% lingonberry & strawberry Siggi’s, as well as orange Nuun.

Overall, the first workout back went really well!  The weather was windy but otherwise beautiful, the canal was scenic, and I’m happy to have had a great workout partner.

 

Autumnal

It’s fall break!!  After an incredibly stressful week, I am now home for a quick 24 hours and plan on soaking in autumn and decompressing as much as possible 🙂  Currently lying in bed drinking lemon ginger tea following an amazing Irish dinner- corned beef, cabbage, and roasted potatoes and vegetables, followed by freshly baked apple crisp.

It’s good to be home 🙂

As I mentioned previously, the past week has been hard.  Everything seemed to happen all at once.  School round-up: Hispanic Studies paper due, followed by a Gender in Society paper, followed by an accounting midterm, an unnecessarily vicious problem set, a Spanish midterm, and a presentation.  I am generally pretty good about balancing schoolwork and stress levels, but this week was something else.  I just tried to take it day by day, and I ended up surviving and getting decent grades on both midterms!  Not sure about the other grades yet.

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Studying and lunching

Running-wise, with three weeks between races, we’ve been in the midst of a particularly meaty training block.  Workouts have been hard.  Thankfully, our lifting instructor has started to taper our weight room routines in preparation for our upcoming races.  This has been sort of fun!  We’ve been focusing on the quality, not quantity, of our lifts, and on Thursday, after completing the requisite 2 sets of 5 chin-ups unassisted, our lifts instructor had me do an extra set with chains!

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I felt pretty darn badass afterwards

The past two weeks have been interesting in that I’ve hit higher mileage within 6 days and therefore have gotten two weeks in a row with a complete off day!  Last week, I hit 59 miles by Saturday, so I took Sunday off.  Same thing happened this week:

10/3-10/9:

Monday: AM: 3 miles + core. PM: 2 lap w/u, form and hurdle drills, speed ladder, 7 miles, 6 x 100m strides, upper body circuit.  Total = 10 miles.
Tuesday: 3 mile w/u, drills/strides, 3 x [1000, 800, 400] on the track with 2-3 min rec and a lap on the turf between sets, 3ish c/d.  Struggled with some dizziness in the second half, so my 3rd 800 was a 600.  Overall a weird workout.  Lower body lift + stretch/roll in weight room.  Ice bath.  Splits below.  Total = 10 miles.

  • Set 1: 3:33, 2:43, 78
  • Set 2: 3:28, 2:45, 80
  • Set 3: 3:33, idk, 76

Wednesday: 6 solo miles trails.  A bit tired.
Thursday: AM: 2 lap w/u, drills, 7.5ish miles, 4 x 150m strides, upper body lift in WR (with chainz).  PM: 3 miles + core.  Total = 11ish miles.
Friday:  3.5 mile w/u, drills, 4 mile tempo on wooded gravel trails (very twisty/hilly so ran about 26 minutes but thought I rallied well on the hills), 6 x :60h with :60-2:00 rec, 20 min c/d.  Ice bath. Total = 11 miles.
Saturday: 11 miles on trails and battlefield loop.  Ice bath.
Sunday (planned): off day with a bit of yoga/stretching

Total: 59 miles

I think I’m just kind of in a rhythm with training/doubles now.  Haven’t really felt the need to go above 60 mpw, so I’m content with taking another complete rest day 🙂 In fact, I didn’t even bring my running shoes home!

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Other thoughts:

  • Our next invitational is in six days!  I’m going to focus on recovery until then.  I’m thankful that this last week of school was the hard one, and hopefully I can stay on top of schoolwork while also relaxing in the coming days/weeks 🙂
  • Goals for the next race:  Go out conservatively.  I want to be able to rally and have a strong second half.
  • I’d like to decrease my coffee consumption- not that 16 ounces per day is nearly as bad as some people, but ideally I’ll get down to 8 ounces.  One cup and no more.  Although Wawa’s $1 any size coffee month is making that difficult 😉 But I’ve done it for 3 days in a row now!
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  • Along the same vein, I haven’t been super frugal recently…but I’ll try my hardest to rein in the grocery spending.  Or so I say…
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I adore fall.  And good friends and food.

That’s all for now!  I hope to write more soon 🙂

Banana Zucchini Bread

Good morning!  After a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad run yesterday (7 miles and I took like 15 breaks) and the pool closing due to a thunderstorm after a whopping 10 minute swim, I took stock of our overripe bananas and abundance of zucchini from our CSA and perused Pinterest to cheer myself up.  Result: a delicious banana zucchini bread, mostly following this recipe.  It was incredibly easy to make, and 16 hours later, the loaf is gone.  I think it was a hit.

banana zucchini bread

Banana Zucchini Bread:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 mashed overripe bananas
  • 2.5 tsp vanilla
  • 1.5 c flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 heaping tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (325 if using convection).  Mix sugar and oil.  Add egg, bananas, and vanilla.  Mix together dry ingredients and pour into wet.  Add zucchini.  Pour into greased 9 x 5 loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes or until done.  Let cool at least 20 minutes.

The bread is dense, flavorful, and gets moister (is that a word? ew) as it sets due to the zucchini.  You can also add chopped nuts, chocolate chips, raisins, or dried berries!

It made for a delicious addition to my breakfast this morning after my running buddy and I had a pretty strong workout.  20 minute warm-up, drills, 6 x [4:00 hard, 1:30 easy], 20 minute cool-down for a total of 9-10 miles.  Even with high humidity and some hills thrown in there, we killed it. Maybe because we knew we had the bread to look forward to at the end 🙂