Monday, October 25, 2010

Butt shot ahead...seriously

Sadly, my oh-so-wonderful 6 mile run this morning ended up a total disaster. Post furious stretching and rolling on a tennis ball, I looked into the mirror to find this on my ass...

Ouchie...hurts like crazy!

Tomorrow, I get myself a massage and hope all goes back to normal.

*fingers crossed*

PS: Getting a half decent butt shot isn't as easy as I thought.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The calendar is marked

I'm so happy to have logged some decent runs these past few weeks that it's now time to set a date. December 6 is when I will officially start base building. If all goes well, that is. Till then, it's going to be a full month and a half of continuing to coax my hip into co-operating by rolling like crazy, strength training, and getting regular massages.

Oh and I have a wedding to get through too...mine that is! Yeah, November 28 is when I tie the first knot (we're having two ceremonies to honor both our religions) with the love of my life! I'm so excited and totally freaking out since there's still so much left to do and so little time. Needing to run more than ever now to keep sanity in check!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Getting there, one small run at a time

First of all, let me say that I'm totally in awe of all those who ran Chi-town last week. The conditions (from what I've read) were brutal and hats off to those who finished in spite of the odds!

Far from racing excitement, I've had some short and easy but good runs these past couple of weeks. "Good" by my definition meaning: with little post-run pain, that just about goes away after a solid 15 minutes of rolling and stretching. This is good news, but if there's anything I've learned from experience, it's to be cautiously hopeful.

Last week, in a desperate attempt to let go of my road-run phobia (I've had some traumatic limping experiences), I dragged myself out for a 4-mile test run. All good (well, almost) till at one point, I had to jump onto the pavement to avoid crashing into a fruit cart (one of the many joys of running in India). Jumping onto pavements = very bad idea. Thankfully, post-run rolling and stretching dulled out most of the pain...I'm almost sure that's a sign of improvement. Then again, I logged a short pain-free (yay!) 30-min treadmill run and a longer 60 mins on Sunday afternoon (hurty during the last 20 mins).

Having tried out various combinations of time, pace, incline, and surface, I've come to realize that I might still need to do most runs on the treadmill, stick to 30-45 minutes (maybe do 60 mins once a week), keep the incline at no more 1% and an easy pace. Of course, I'll be doing outdoor test runs every now and to gauge my progress (and eventually transition). So that’s that. Far from where I would like to be, but still hopeful that some day, I can join in the racing fervor. Yes, progress has been slow, but I just might be able to pick up the pieces once again. There's a faint bit of light seeping in through that pinhole...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Superfood from the Indian backyard

Finally, I’ve gotten down to doing a food review I’ve wanted to do for a long time. Since I am currently in weight-loss/recover-from-injury mode, I’ve been forced to re-evaluate my diet and I’m happy to note that I’m making some really big changes in this department.

So here’s what’s on the plate today: amaranth seeds. This gluten-free seed (it’s not a grain, very similar to quinoa) is probably not much heard of outside of a few cultures, but in India, it’s a big part of our diet and tradition. Here, the air-popped seeds are mixed with jaggary, peanuts, and cardamom, and shaped into confection balls or bars.

Some interesting amaranth facts:

  • The Aztecs believed that amaranth gave them mystical, supernatural powers. Warriors and runners ate it for strength.
  • The seeds are high in protein and contain high amounts of lysine and methionine, two types of amino acids, making it a more complete source of protein than most grains (30% more). Using them in combination with wheat, corn, or brown rice equals the protein content to fish, red meat, or poultry.
  • Amaranth seeds are also high in fiber, calcium (twice as much as milk), iron, potassium, phosphorous, and vitamins A, C, E.
  • Amaranth is super-easy to digest (90% digestible) and because of this ease of digestion, it has traditionally been given to those recovering from an illness or ending a fasting period (very common fasting food in India).
  • Amaranth has a low glycemic Index (2.4), keeping you full, longer.
Although you can use the seeds (popped or unpopped) any way you like, I prefer to make porridge of it. It’s super easy and FAST!

Here’s how I enjoy my amaranth porridge:
Warm milk. Hot is best since the seeds soak in more readily.

Add popped amaranth seeds. More or less depending on the consistency you like. 

Mix and let it stand for about 2 minutes so that the seeds soak in the milk and it gets creamy.

Garnish! I sprinkled sugar, melon seeds, raisins, and prunes. Other great-tasting garnishes: bananas, peanut butter, almonds. And it’s ready…YUMM!

Nutritional Profile (based on ¼ cup dry grain)
Calories = 182
Total Fat = 3.25 g
Saturated Fat = 0.75 g
Cholesterol = 0 mg
Sodium = 10.25 mg
Carbohydrate = 32.25 g
Dietary Fiber = 4.5 g
Protein = 7 g
Gluten Free