Rain. Race plans. Running & Saucony sneaker review.


This has been our view all weekend long (not complaining because it isn’t snow) but it is that kind of weekend where you just want to curl up and read and watch good movies under a blanket.  Yesterday, I had taken a rest day for my legs because I was planning on doing a race today and to go car shopping with my husband.  By the evening, post church service, I checked the weather and had seen the outlook becoming more dismal.   The rains/winds hadn’t let up and were slated to get worse today (as they have) so I pulled the plug on my plans to travel this morning to run outdoors and replaced that with a run at the gym. I’m also fighting a lovely cold that my husband so generously shared with me and I knew what my best option was for a quick recovery so I can continue training and not get pneumonia.  I’ve run 4-5 half marathons in the rain and they aren’t fun.  End. Of.  Story!  Sometimes logic need to win out.

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— Knead to Cook

Spring training. Allergy season. Running and snow?


I admit, I’m confused.  I sit here and it’s supposed to be spring… the weekend was lovely and warm and now we have a pending snow storm? Tonight!  I think in all actuality it is supposed to only be a  dusting or an inch but really?? The calendar claims spring and honestly the winter has just been brutal.  Most of us have had enough.  Well my training continues and apparently now allergies, amidst the pending snow, have started.  Pollen count is nice and high and my husband, youngest and myself all feel like we’re dragging, foggy and just blah.  Regardless, the training must continue despite me wanting to stay in bed at 4:30 a.m. versus getting dressed and trudging to the gym but I do.  I alternate my run days with weights/cardio/abs so that was yesterday.  Today meant a run.  I’m rushing to get my 100 miles in for the FitFluential 100 mile challenge for March.  I did do it for February and that was a shorter month so this should be easy, right?  Ha.  I’m now up to 85.95 miles at 11:07:30 time.  If I knew I was so close to 86 I would’ve run it today but the totals come after my run was over.  Two more runs this week and I’ll be there.  I’m tossing around a race this weekend, just hoping my “fog” lifts and I find some good energy before I sign up.

Wearing:  Mizuno Wave Rider 16, Lucy endurance capris, Garmin 620 running watch, Jawbone UP 24 band.

That’s it from here.  I’m off to start working in the kitchen.

Sweat daily.


— Knead to Cook

Irish Chocolate Mint Smoothie and Rock Climbing Adventures.


We had such a fun Sunday… or Funday!  I’ve been so anxious to tryout a local rock climbing facility with the family.  Most of us are adventurous, my oldest daughter is the more sensible, cautious kid.  So I figured this was a good challenge for all of us… never having done anything to these heights before.  This place was amazing and we had the best time!  Life does start outside your comfort zone!  Once you let go of your fears, it’s amazing what you can achieve – mind over matter.  Even my oldest said how much fun it was letting go of her control.  I agree as I’m totally the type A personality…  control is everything or so I thought.

We came home to my version of a healthy Irish (in honor of St. Patty’s Day) mint chocolate smoothie. Protein to rebuild muscles used to scale “rocks” was a good thing!  Would be a fun breakfast idea on the go too!
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— Knead to Cook

Hemp Protein Green Smoothie. Running recovery.


You know how this winter has been, right?  Forever. Unending.  Perpetually horrible.  Well finally we have been rejoicing and enjoying a brief respite from Mother Nature’s furor and soaking up the sunshine-filled days and warmer temperatures.  I don’t like running in the afternoon or evening, I like running on an empty stomach and because I eat all day long – I’m relegated to the darkness of the early morning 5am workout crew.  Last night I checked my weather app and it clearly had a 5 am temp of 40 degrees.  I opted to bag the gym and the treadmill, which I did over a 100 miles on last month, to finally get outside and work some hills and test my speed again.  I was worried.  My husband thought I was crazy but I didn’t know how my speed and cadence would be after running on the treadmill so long but I faced my fear and doing it.

I jumped out of bed, sans alarm, at 430 am.  I got up and dressed.  Ready for 40 degrees.  I normally don’t mind running in 20-30 degrees temps but since my hand surgery and developing Raynaud’s syndrome… I cannot take the cold/pain at that temp.  It’s going to be 40 – I can handle that!  So I run out the door and get started.  Seemed quite chilly but I kept moving.  I didn’t have the right gloves on (I normally layer to keep my hands from freezing) and I had a tank on under my coat and no hat.  Yep.  I was freezing… I wasn’t warming up… I kept going.  My plan was 10 but by 8 my fingers hurt so badly I knew I needed to be done.  I wasn’t paying attention to my speed but to taking each hill and dodging black ice (snow melt/refreeze) with stride.  I got home and could barely open my garage keypad with my fingers.  Got in and was flabbergasted at my time!  Best time ever – EVER!  Two years ago I was at a 930 minute mile and 32 lbs heaver.  What the world!!!  Craziness!  I’ll admit, I’m just elated.  Who knows if I can pull that off again but I was so happy with my effort.  And by the way – my husband ran separately and told me that the temp was 32.  No wonder I was freezing!

So how to refuel?  Well I’ve been limiting dairy over the past week or so because my stomach has been struggling with it in normal sized portions.  I wanted to incorporate a protein in my smoothie because I don’t eat meat.  So this is my latest and greatest creation.  Perfect for vegans. One side note, while eating any iron-rich food, always pair it up with a citrus fruit to help with the absorption of the iron in your body.  This helps if you suffer from anemia or are low in iron.


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— Knead to Cook

Can you #branchout ? Calling all yogis and wanna be yogis.


Show us your tree pose!

I’m teaming up with my friend and all around AWESOME friend, Abby from Seaweed and Sassafras, to challenge you to get your feet rooted, out stretch those arms and show us your tree pose.  I’ve recently gotten out of my comfort zone and started back with yoga – in fact, my whole family is and we love it!  Thanks to the awesome teachers at Evolution Power Yoga for this fun idea…

Use #branchout and tag your photo on Instagram or Twitter showing us how you get your yoga on.  Be silly, be creative, grab some friends and just have fun with it!  We want to see your wobbling, smiling faces.  Can’t quite get the pose down yet?  No prob!  Stand up tall, raise your arms high and give us a grin.  Take this moment to breathe deep, relax, laugh and open up to the world.  Little changes can make a big difference.  Join us in adding more joy to our lives.

Every Friday Abby and I will pick our favorites from Instagram and Twitter, and feature them on our blogs.  So remember to use #branchout so we can find your great photos.


— Knead to Cook