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Dear self,

Starting today (Thursday 5/13), if you do all of your scheduled training activities for the next 30 days (barring any illness, injury, or weight room closures), I will save my fun money and get you a reward – a Garmin Forerunner 305.

If you do not do all of your scheduled training activities for the next 30 days, tough schist.  (I’m a geologist.  We like dumb geology puns.  My apologies.)

YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO PURCHASE THIS BEFORE THEN, SO STOP LOOKING AT IT ON AMAZON.  That’s right, I said close the window and put the laptop down!

NO EXCUSES, DO THE WORK.

– Me

I made my last-ditch effort for the full marathon today.  I did my long run for the week – I figured I’d just go and run and see how far I got.  If I made it to 20 miles, I would do the full marathon in three weeks.  If not, I would email the race organizers to switch my registration.

Well, I only made it to 7 miles.  By then, my knee had started to bug me enough that I knew 20 was out of the question today.  Boo.

So after I wandered upstairs (I did my run on the treadmill so my husband wouldn’t have to come pick me up somewhere if it didn’t go the way I planned) and showered, I sent the email I had been dreading – I switched my registration down to the half marathon in three weeks.

It’s okay – I still get to run the half marathon and have fun.  I know my knee will be okay for that.  And I can focus on my training this summer and make sure my knee is in good shape for the full marathon in September.

And hey, maybe I’ll get to redeem myself from my DNF in the half marathon a couple weeks ago.

I originally got this idea from my friend, and I have no idea where she got the recipe (I would assume PPK, because that’s where most of her things come from).  It is absolutely delicious!

Start by PRESSING YOUR TOFU AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.  This is key.  I won’t make this without at least 2-day-pressed tofu.  Don’t have a tofu press and want one?  Try this one!  I LOOOOOOOOVE it.  See my review.

Slice your tofu into sheets.  The thinner you make them, the more it’s like a deli meat substitute.  I find the thicker they are, the better they are right out of the pan and warm.  The thinner they are, the better they are as leftovers – more like deli meat.

Give your tofu sheets a little dip in Tamari.  I usually put a little bit in my (now empty) tofu press and swirl them around in there for a second.

Drop the tamari-dipped tofu slices into a hot skillet and pan fry them.  I find I like them best when I add just a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil to the pan before frying.  It gives them a great golden color.  Keep an eye on them as they brown quickly.

Remove from the pan and make your delicious sandwich with whatever toppings makes you smile!  My favorite is Veganaise and spicy mustard with a little bit of lettuce (I’m a sandwich minimalist).

My favorite combo – this sandwich with an organic gala apple and a little natural peanut butter.  Heavenly!

(Of course, after I took this I remembered we did, in fact, have lettuce.)

Enjoy!

I’ve accepted my fate and will be switching my registration down to the half for my race on May 30th.  I’m disappointed, but I know it’s what I need to do.

Tonight I sat down and figured out my new plan of attack for my training.  I have a lot of different elements I want to combine – especially now that I’m done with my busy teaching schedule until September.  I intend to make my training my focus for the summer.  I want to do this well and have a good race when my marathon rolls around in September.

So here’s the new plan…

There’s some gaps in there to accommodate random travels (Florida, and a workshop in Montana – hooray!) and miscellaneous events.

Annnnnnnd, go!

The rock out playlist I posted last night was the one I used last month.  Last night I was bored and decided to make a new one.  So here it is!

Some repeats (my favorites from the last one), but mostly new stuff.  I only got through “C” in my iTunes artist list.  That’s why there’s a lot of BNL and Beatles.  I figure, within a couple months I should have a good set of songs that match my running pace and make me want to run harder.  It’s trial-and-error.  Some work, some don’t.  We’ll see how this one works out today!

I call this my “1 Hour Rock Out” playlist, for when I feel like doing speedwork…

My favorite songs on here…

  • Girlfriend
  • The Anthem
  • Politically Correct
  • Candyman
  • Under 21

Every single one of those makes me happy, run faster, and push myself harder when I hear it.

Today after work I went for a run with my husband.  It was his first time running since his ACL replacement in January and he did great!  He has never been a runner, so we started with a very “Couch to 5k”-type run/walk interval.  He went for 1.5 miles.

After he was done, I went back out and did another 2 miles on my own.  When I first started, I didn’t have a distance in mind.  I was just going to run and see how I felt.  When I was going slower, my knee felt a little tight, but not painful.  So I decided to pick up the pace and see how that felt.  Surprisingly, my knee felt really good when I went faster!  So I did 2 miles at a 9:09/mile pace – almost even to my starting pace at the half marathon a couple weeks ago.  Of course, it felt MUCH easier during the race, but it still felt good today!

Tomorrow I’ll go out for longer and see how it holds up.  The other nice thing is that now everything is done for the semester except for my two finals and a little bit of grading, so I can get my runs and lifting in during the day and really give my training the attention it requires.  I know I didn’t go about this in the right way and now I’m paying for it.  But tomorrow is a brand new day and I can start doing it right!

I’m afraid to run on my knee again.

I know it’s fine, but I’m so nervous I’ll take about three steps and feel that pain again.  I don’t want that to happen.  I was going to go for a run tonight after work, but while we were walking the dogs that same knee got tight (a different feeling than the problem I’ve been having – just uncomfortable), and I wimped out.

That’s right, I’m a wimp.

I got my husband to promise me that he would go for a (very short) run with me tomorrow.  He just got the go-ahead from his surgeon to jog in straight lines (ie: no playing football any time soon) on Friday, so he can finally run with me!  He’s been functioning on a torn ACL since 1996, so that’s pretty exciting.  We won’t go for long, and we won’t be going fast, but we’ll at least be out there.  If my knee is feeling alright, I’ll keep going after he’s done, but I really have no idea how it will feel, and I’m very nervous.

Another confession, along those same lines…

I haven’t yet switched my registration for Buffalo down to the half marathon.  There’s something about that that feels like wimping out.  Even though I know it’s not, and it’s probably the smart move, I’m hesitating.  It also doesn’t help that the cheap side of me is saying “but I already paid for the MARATHON.”

I wasn’t told I couldn’t do the full.  I know it depends entirely on how I’m feeling.  So my current plan is to get some miles in this week, go out for a long run this weekend, and see how far I can go (without overdoing it).  If I can get to 20, great.  If not, I’ll switch down to the half.  Most likely I will be switching down.  And I know that’s okay, I’m just not thrilled with it.  I’ve been planning on this full for so long and it just seems like such a let down to not get to do it.  My in-laws and friends were going to be there to cheer me on, and now I don’t think they’ll be coming.  It’s not quite the same.

I just have to keep telling myself there are other marathons.  I can focus on the one I was planning on for September instead and not kill myself trying to get through Buffalo.

But I still really really want to try…

(No Julie, I won’t do anything stupid.  I promise.)

So way back in January, my husband’s best friend and I made a plan for him to come visit my husband and surprise him this weekend (his friend lives in Buffalo, which is roughly 5 hours away).

It was a huge success!

My husband came home from work on Friday to his friend sitting in the couch.  I think he was a little shocked.

Right – my hubs,  left – his friend.

There was much of this…

P.S. – How old school is our TV?  I HATE moving that thing.

Much of this…

And we stuffed ourselves silly!

That would be my brilliant husband eating a melted ice cream cake with a ladle.  No, really.  I swear I ate better than that.

Overall, a good weekend!  And I was full until Tuesday morning.

So I went to my orthopedist on Friday morning and was pleasantly surprised with the outcome.

It is indeed runners knee, but it’s not severe.  My left kneecap does track slightly to the outside of the groove in my femur, which causes the tendons to become irritated and inflamed.

So rather than the “no running for X weeks” response I was expecting, my doctor gave me several quad strengthening exercises to do and said I can run, but I need to be aware of how I am feeling.  (He is a marathoner, and understands the crazy need to run.)  He suggested that instead of the full on May 30th, I switch to the half.  And then focus my efforts on the full in September.  I think that’s a good plan.  That way, I still get to run SOMETHING in Buffalo, but I won’t feel like a failure having to drop out of the full partway through.  And I can make sure I do my training the RIGHT way for the September full.

Hooray!

Need to contact me?

geonerdette at gmail dot com

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