Cookbook Review: Run Fast Eat Slow

Hey there friends! I wanted to share my thoughts on a new cookbook that has been getting a lot of press in the running world: Run Fast Eat Slow, by Shalene Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky. Their website describes it as a book of “delicious, energy-packed recipes from a world-class Olympic marathoner and a whole-foods chef,” which I think is a very apt summary. What I love most is that this cookbook focuses on healthy recipes but also incorporates things like pasta and desserts. When Jeremy took a pass through he flagged more promising recipes than I did, and he loves his sweets and treats!! I’ll give a few examples of the recipes we have tried below, but spoiler alert: we really love this cookbook and think it would make a fantastic gift.image1

Superhero Muffins: One of the more hyped recipes from the blog, we just made these for the first time this weekend. These super dense muffins are really tasty and filling–they’re made with oats, almond flour, carrots, and zucchini and amped up with butter and maple syrup. Perfect for a snack or a grab-and-go breakfast. Click the link to get this recipe and try it out now!

Race Day Oatmeal: I have been eating gluten free toast and peanut butter before my runs forever but this finally pushed me to give oatmeal a whirl. Shalene’s go-to combo uses quick cooking oats in the microwave, which is super helpful for travel. So far it has been sitting pretty well before races and long runs–I even ate it before my half marathon PR!img_0433

Don’t Get Beet Hummus: This was actually the first recipe I tried since it was circulating on various blogs before the book was released. It was delicious and so easy (why don’t I always make my own hummus??) and the color makes it a major crowd pleaser.

Wild Salmon Sweet Potato Cakes: I would actually probably not make this recipe again, which is certainly the only one so far. The finished product came out tasting really delicious, but this recipe was really complicated and the cakes kind of fell apart as we attempted to pan-fry them.

img_0811Burst Cherry Tomato Linguine with Shrimp: This was an incredibly simple, quick dinner recipe that J and I both loved. We used both red and yellow cherry tomatoes and frozen shrimp and it came out beautifully.

We have also made the Winter Veggie Salad with Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing (pictured below), Broccoli Chevre Soup, and Arugula Cashew Pesto–all of which were really yummy and surprisingly easy to throw together!

Overall, I think this is a great book for anyone looking to eat healthy and live an img_0979active lifestyle. I pull a lot of recipes off of blogs and Pinterest, but I still turn to cookbooks if I want to be sure that a recipe will work on the first try without a hitch. For my gluten free friends, rest assured that Run Fast Eat Slow has tons of options, and the recipes are flagged if they are vegetarian or gf. Head over to your local bookstore (they could use the support!!) and pick up a copy today.

Happy eating!

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How I listen to my body to prevent injuries

IMG_9745Happy Monday, party people! I have a quick update on my hip pain situation I wrote about in my week 7 marathon training update. The long and the short of it is that I am feeling almost 100% better and was able to complete my scheduled long run this weekend. Keeping in mind that I am NOT a medical professional but have had my fair share of minor injuries, I wanted to share the strategies I use to help keep my training on track.

  1. Understand that minor aches and pains are an inevitable part of marathon training. I can’t stress this one enough–marathon training is a lot on any body and little tweaks and pains are part of the process. Try to stay in tune with what’s going on, and if anything lasts more than a day or two, gets worse instead of better, or is a sharp pain (versus a dull/achey pain) then take the steps you need to in order to take care of it. Running through something painful will make it worse, not better.
  2. Do the easy things first. When something falls into the category of “beyond the daily aches and pains,” use your resources before immediately jumping to seeing a professional. More often than not, they’ll tell you to do the following, so if you’re feeling like it’s not serious it can help to try these things yourself instead of wasting time and money getting the same advice from a doctor:IMG_7095
    • Take time off. More on this below.
    • Ice! I keep a reusable icepack in the freezer and will bring it to work and ice on and off all day if I’m treating an injury.
    • Take an antinflamatory–if you have concerns about this one, obviously check with a doc first, but last summer my doctor told me to take ibuprofen every 6 hours to bring down inflamation and it really helped both then and this hip business.
    • Foam roll! I foam roll almost every day, but when I’m working with an injury I try to roll every morning and evening (as long as it isn’t too painful). Foam rolling is a really great preventative care technique. I have one of these for my quads/glutes/IT bands and one of these, which I use mostly for my calves.
    • Stretch! I find both yoga and stretching to be really helpful for both treatment and prevention.
  3. Rest, rest, REST. It can be really, really hard to take time off from running, but taking extra rest days is absolutely essential to keeping your training on track. I took Thursday and Friday off last week and was able to complete my 17 mile long run pain-free on Saturday morning.IMG_9747
  4. Use online resources (with great caution). The internet can be a scary place if you’re injured–there’s lots of gloom and doom out there about “runner’s knee” and other vauge/unhelpful diagnoses for aches and pains. While I am super duper cautious about taking advice from Dr. Google, I was able to look up some helpful diagrams to zero in on which hip muscle was bothering me and find a stretch to target it directly. So use your resources with a heavy dose of cynicism, and always ask a professional if you’re at all unsure.
  5. Prevent it from happening again. It’s easy to get lazy after an injury feels better, but it’s even easier to re-injure something that you’re not taking care of. This is why, for example, I foam roll every day and do yoga twice a week even when I’m injury-free. Better to take the time now and not have to disrupt my training later on!

How do you listen to your body and prevent running injuries?

Linking up with PattyErika, and Marcia for Tuesdays on the run!

The easiest overnight oats ever

IMG_9445I have a very, very strong belief in breakfast. Regardless of what the recent breakfast-haters say, a satisfying early meal sets me up for success–especially after a morning workout! In the winter, I like to mix things up, but in the summer I have the same thing every day: overnight oats. Even after a hard track workout, this stuff keeps me completely full until lunch. Sayonara, morning snacking! The basic gist is that you combine oats, a liquid, and some other add-ins in a jar, let it sit overnight, and the oats soften up and soak up the liquid overnight. I’ve found this is way easier on my stomach even then cooked oatmeal.

I’ve tried a bunch of different recipes and have adapted them to a foolproof, incredibly easy one that uses pantry staples and minimizes the nut milk/extra dairy milk you’ll find in other recipes. This recipe is gluten free, low in dairy (just the yogurt has it, and I’m sure you could sub for a dairy-free one), low in sugar, and DELISH.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup rolled oats (not quick cooking, gluten free if needed)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4-1/3 cup Greek yogurt (I like Cabot’s full fat)
  • Half of a banana, thinly sliced
  • A sprinkle of chia seeds
  • A drizzle of maple syrup or honey
  • A good shake of salt
  • A drizzle of vanilla

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients in a jar or empty Talenti container. Put on the lid, shake it up, and leave in the fridge overnight. These will easily keep for a couple of days.
  • Top with whatever you like! My favorites are fresh or frozen berries and a big scoop of peanut butter.

Happy breakfasting!!