Snow over it

From beautiful distraction to the bane of existence, the winter weather of the last two weeks has taken us – literally – by storm.

11000604_10103668719169272_3682778691255327476_nSo pretty. So…much…snow.

The last storm that rolled through Wednesday night was the doozie. Our walk through the neighborhood on Thursday morning was eerie. It had a post-apocalyptic feel [minus zombie sightings]. We also learned (and were quickly grateful) that our section of the neighborhood was on a different power grid as we passed by many dark, quiet homes (minus the two likely Yankee homes that had generators on full blast).

Even better (or worse?): our Internet was out for the entire day Thursday. Work from home? Not so easily. We made the best of it with our neighbors: impromptu sledding down the back hill. Sadly, zero kids were out playing. ZERO! Get off your iPads, generation jelly. Build a snowperson, an ice fort, throw a snowball or two.

11012754_10103668722612372_1992479225457152388_nYes, that is a beer snowman

11001781_10103668715466692_8965242498668517207_nTree struggles.

10998253_10103668722013572_4171058845840179764_oSnowfie!

Outside of throwing off daily routines left and right, this weather has made marathon training even more taxing. Last Sunday was the first of two scheduled 20 mile runs. The last time I ran 20 miles was during the Rock N’ Roll Marathon back in January 2012. I elected to hit the American Tobacco Trail for this endeavor…

only to find it a sheet of ice. Literally – it was a solid block of ice and snow for the vast majority of the trail despite the almost 50F outside. Treading lightly with my NPR friends, I traversed the landscape, knocking the training out of the park with zero falls or injuries:

run2015It will be warmer in March. It will be warmer in March. It will be over in March.

We’re just shy of 30 days out from the Knoxville Marathon, and I’m still feeling great, which is a relief from the battles I faced in 2011. On the schedule for this weekend: 8 mile pace run today with a 15 mile long run tomorrow. I will force myself to run in a hillier section of the Triangle to prepare myself for the rolling landscape of Knoxville. I did give into some treadmill running the previous weekend, and boy – that was rough. I tip my hat to those who can spend quality time on those machines. It could also have been the fact that the Y was blasting the heat, so my own cooling system was unable to perform its own cleansing duty. Suffocating.

But, today is the LAST day of February! Is it time for spring? I sure hope so. Looking forward to getting away to some warmer climate next week. All I have to say to the snow that remains: it’s you, not me. Come back at Christmas, but that’s about it. Thanks.

Runners, how do you train during the winter months?

Breaking Blog Silence

I had to chuckle this morning when my friend Sheila remarked: “You haven’t blogged in awhile! How am I supposed to know what’s going on in your life?” She certainly meant this in jest, as we had made a point to partake in a morning of yoga and incredible lattes afterward (Cocoa Cinnamon has a blackstrap molasses latte with almond milk that will melt your heart):

Nevertheless, I admit: I’ve been out of the blogging practice this week. Perhaps this is the reason:

IMG_20140129_070956

IMG_20140129_071418

I AM SO OVER THIS WINTER. Do I speak for all non-Western U.S. folks as I type that? From Tuesday at 6:30am until Thursday at 10:00am, I did not venture past the mailboxes – no driving, no sunshine. This likely did not aid my sloth-like state within that 48+ hour period. Reflecting back on this work week, I admit that I did not get dressed outside of workout attire or pajamas AND I did not put on a single speck of make-up until just about 10 minutes ago. And now you see why it’s important for me to schedule outside events during the week.

While I didn’t explore the arctic adventures via transit, I did ensure I filled our bellies with warmth and comfort during that time. Some delicious items on the menu this past week included:

1) Szechwan Tempeh and Green Beans

IMAG1223

IMAG1224

2) Jamaican-Style Coconut Rice Bowl (with the remnants of a Foster’s Market salad)

IMAG1227

3) Hot Salsa Pinto Beans and Rice Tacos

IMAG1230

4) Hot Salsa Pinto Bean and Rice Taco Salad

IMAG1241

5) Chickpea Noodle Soup

IMAG1242

IMAG1244

All of the recipes this week were from Robin Robertson’s One-Dish Vegan, which I touted in my last post as well. They all earned a huge thumbs up!

I’ll be sharing a post later this weekend on the adventures of last Saturday: the art and style of finding a wedding dress. Stay tuned!