Saturday, June 27, 2009

Running on empty

Have you ever overbooked yourself and found yourself just barely being able to keep up? That's what this past week/weekend has felt like. I'm finally getting a few moments to breathe and 9:45pm. Yeesh.

First of all, I have just completed week one of marathon training. YAAAY! I did all my runs except for Thursday's scheduled 3 miler - after Wednesday's pang, I woke up to a pain in my right leg as I walked. I decided to just chill out, not stress about missing a run and get a good stretch in. Luckily I was working at the running store on Friday and I was able to pick up my new best friend:
Allow me to introduce you to the
foam roller. Basically this sucker exists to loosen up my not so happy IT band (which, btw, I've never had any issues with until recently). It can be used for a bunch of other things (hamstrings, quads, back, etc.), and it's essentially like using a rolling pin to roll out some knots and tightness in your muscles. You use your body weight so you're pretty much guaranteed a good massage. Fair warning - it's not a pleasant feeling. It kinda hurts a lot when I roll up toward my hip area, but I know it's a hurt that will only be good in the end. I used it for the first time last night and I definitely felt a little better during this morning's run.

After a long day of volunteering and working, I wasn't about to cook dinner so Jamie, running buddy and I walked up the street to Shanghai Garden for dinner. Running buddy started off with a
Volcano and I HAD to take a picture of the massive bowl lit on fire:
Ridiculous...and awesome at the same time.
Who orders tropical drinks?? I certainly don't. Ha.

We ate a TON of food. I'm almost ashamed to admit how much...and how not painfully full I was. I think I really need to start finding more portable snacks. With all these extra activities I have during the week, I'm finding that I forget to eat enough during the day. BAD! Anyway, the food we did eat was plentiful and delicious. We split half a
Peking Duck as an appetizer and it was pretty good...excellent crispy skin - exactly what I look for. The rest of the meal was family style - Szechuan Pork with String Beans, Spiced Orange Beef and my favorite Thrice Cooked Tofu. I wasn't a big fan of the beef, but I think that's because it was a little tough and I wasn't feeling the sweet sauce. They didn't mess around with the pork and string beans - those suckers were SPICY...and I like spicy! I mostly stuck with my tofu...don't have a clue what they put in it, but it tastes like delicious.

Unfortunately, all these tasty treats were
SALT LADEN. I could feel my fingers swelling the minute we left the restaurant and I was parched when I woke up this morning. Totally not what I needed pre-run. Mind you, I eat some pretty random stuff pre-run and pre-race, but that's a whole other post.

I tried to hydrate and de-swell and managed to make it out the door this morning by
9am for my solo 8 miles. WOOO! It's not that I haven't done a long run on my own's that I haven't done a morning long run on my own before. Getting out there and whipping out 10 miles at like 10 or 11 am is a piece of cake. For some reason my body just boycotts anything before that. Hmph! I'm quite proud of my morning endeavor!

On my way back, I stopped at Lawson's in Dupont for a cold bevy since it was hothothot out. I walked out with this:
Again, sucker for fun packaging. The owater caught my attention because I didn't really want the sweetness of a Gatorade or Vitamin water, but I wanted something more than just water. Figured I'd give it a shot. The bottle says "
Think of a cool, refreshing glass of water with a slice of mandarin orange. Honest fruit taste, crisp but not sweet." That pretty much sums it up! It was definitely refreshing after my run and was totally like drinking a water w/an orange floating in it. Would I pay $1.99 for another bottle? Probably not, but it was a fun taste test.

I barely had time to shove some
Muesli bread w/Peanut Butter in my mouth before heading out to work. Threw a Peanut Butter Z Bar in my bag and off I went...without my berry. I felt so naked.

After standing for 7 hours straight at work/visually shopping for items I shouldn't spend money on, I walked back home
STARVING. We're talking cranky, stomach hurts, can't decide anything HUNGRY. To tide me over, Jamie cut me a piece of the Mango Bread he made during the day. YUMMY!
Jamie decided we should go out to eat instead of making food so we walked
back to Cleveland Park (like I needed to kill some more calories) and ended up at Paragon Thai. We've ordered takeout from there before and had a pretty good experience so we figured why not check it out in person?

It was pretty empty around 7:30 which was shocking. I'm wondering if it would get a lot more business if it wasn't tucked away in the shopping center. Hm. Anyway, I needed sugar and caffeine to kick me back into gear so I started out with a
Thai Coffee:
Same concept as a Thai Iced Tea, but with coffee. It was good for the first few sips, but toward the end, I just couldn't handle the sweetness of it all. I wish it came in mini form!

We started with one of the day's specials -
Garden Rolls:
Yeah, kinda weird that a typical Vietnamese dish was on the menu, but it was a fun variation. They stuffed these with
thai basil, egg noodles, tofu and red peppers. They were also topped with ground peanuts and served with a sweet chili sauce (or at least that's what it reminded me of). Not bad...though, I am partial to a hoisin peanut dipping sauce ;)

Jamie got the
Kee Mao Fried Rice (Pork fried with steamed rice in chili and garlic sauce with fresh basil, onion and red & green bell pepper)
It was pretty good, a little too dense and wet for me, but the flavors were good. Just enough spice!

I got the
Pad Mah Kua (Chicken sauteed with eggplant, chili black bean sauce, red and green bell pepper and basil leaves)
SO SO GOOD! I do love a good chili black bean sauce and thai basil is one of my favorite flavors ever. I'd totally get this again, but maybe with mixed veggies and tofu instead of chicken - it was a little dry. I loved the eggplant in this dish with the sauce! YUUM!!

Paragon Thai did not disapoint! The staff was really friendly and helpful and the food was fantastic. They have a pretty decent sized menu and for the most part you can choose what sort of meat (or not meat) you want with your dish - mixed veggies/tofu, pork, chicken, beef or shrimp. They also give you the option of
brown rice (though, our waiter forgot and gave me white instead. Whatevs.)

For dessert (no there was no skipping dessert. I needed more.) we stopped at YogiBerry. Duh. Crazy long line, but we waited and got:
A slight variation to my usual -
Original Yogurt with Blueberries, Mango and Yogurt Chips. I'm still trying to figure out what the hell goes with Cinnamon Chips. I just want to get them!! Fruits go well with cinnamon chips, right?

Jamie went with his usual candy coated cup:
Berry Yogurt with MARSHMALLOWS (yes, they are multicolored), Cap'n Crunch and Strawberries. Needless to say, we walked home after dessert.

I hope everyone is having a great and relaxing weekend! Tomorrow morning I'm off to DC Central Kitchen to chop up some veggies for meals and then I'm going to come up with a cross training workout, shop for some groceries and write about our Sunday dinner! Til then, I leave you with a picture I took with my friend's fancy new Canon...the one I gushed about:

1 comment:

Val said...

Foam rollers are life savers! I love mine and could not live w/o it@