Saturday, October 29, 2011

5 Miles and a Bruin Win

Yesterday felt like the terrible-sounding crescendo at the end of a really long, terrible song. If that metaphor didn't work, it's because this week drained my writing abilities. I apologize. This week was tough, especially yesterday, when my cheerleaders performed at three different events throughout the day. When I got home at 11 pm, I couldn't wait to snuggle up and get a good night's sleep.

But even after our exhausting week, I still wanted to squeeze in a good workout before the UCLA game today. I forced myself out of bed at 8 am to get going on a run. I made a new playlist for my iPod because I know music sometimes makes or breaks my running mood, shared half a banana with Terry for fuel, and drank a glass of water to hydrate. I mapped out the run, and we were off!

Today I aimed for 5 miles. After two days of rest, I felt mentally ready to tackle a big run (my longest distance before today was 4.75 miles). I really enjoyed the run today! I felt well rested and eager to log a good distance. Terry ran with me, which made it so much easier, and we ran through some areas I had never explored before. When I run alone, I stick to busy streets with lots of people so I feel safer, but with Terry I feel more comfortable checking out the quieter areas of our neighborhood. West LA provides some awesome sightseeing, including:
  • Gorgeous homes we will never be able to afford
  • A man running with his arms down by his side (have you ever seen the Seinfeld episode where Molly Shannon's character doesn't move her arms when she walks? It was like that)
  • A group of tourists walking through Westwood at 8:30 am on a Saturday, likely disappointed that they chose the worst time of day, because approximately three businesses are open at that hour
  • Lots of puddles (it hasn't rained here since Monday), which Terry enjoyed stepping in to splash me
In the end, we completed 5.19 miles! By far my new record! The last .19 miles (or so I imagine) just about killed me. My legs and hips felt super tight, and I was hungry and thirsty. But the first five miles weren't so bad, especially in the cool weather (well, 65 degrees - cool enough).

For breakfast, we enjoyed some delicious English cheddar scrambled eggs with whole-wheat sourdough bread and a glass of milk. Delicious way to start the day!

Bruins Win for Heidi's Birthday
After the productive morning, we ventured out to Pasadena for a tailgate, the Bruin game, and to celebrate Heidi's birthday! Six of us devoured an awesome spread of two-bean rice salad, mini-cakes, spinach salad, and - the star of the day - Heidi's jalapeno-cream cheese-bacon-stuffed burgers. We all had to take breaks in the middle of our burgers because they were huge! I highly recommend trying out these monsters!
Jalapeno-cream cheese-bacon-stuffed burgers

I had to get a picture of the middle of these bad boys!

My contribution to the tailgate: Spinach Balsamic Salad. Not as fun as Heidi's, but a light side dish to pair with those (^).

Spinach Balsamic Salad
Serves 6 as a side
  • Fresh spinach leaves (we got about 4 big handfuls from the farmers' market)
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients. Serve immediately. To make ahead, mix all ingredients except the tomatoes and vinegar. Add the tomatoes and vinegar right before serving.

Our tailgate turned out to be awesome! Not that I'm surprised, because this group has serious hosting talents, but we pulled together a lovely afternoon. Between the food, the beers and ciders, and what might be our new favorite game, Telestrations, we had a blast. I hope Heidi had a wonderful birthday!


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