Butternut Squash and Sausage Pasta

I have been dying to share this recipe since I made it Wednesday night but have been super busy.  I got the inspiration from the Postrun Pasta article in Runner’s World September issue.  The “recipes” they provided pretty much just had a list of ingredients with no directions so I winged it.  I really did not expect Casey to have anything good to say about it when it was all said and done, but low and behold, he LOVED it!  As did I.  This one will definitely be part of our regular meals from now on.

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Ingredients

8 oz Bow Tie Pasta

3 Cups Butternut Squash (I buy the precut, so much easier)

2 Links of your favorite sausage (I used Turkey)

10 oz Portobello Mushrooms

1/4 cup Dried Cranberries

4 tablespoons Olive Oil

2 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar

1 tablespoon Minced Garlic

Black Pepper to taste

Red Pepper Flakes to taste

Goat Cheese for topping

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 350.  Place butternut squash on cookie sheet, drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil.  Roast for 30 minutes.  Squash should still be slightly firm when removing from oven.

2.  While butternut squash is roasting, prepare pasta.

3.  In large skillet over medium heat add 1 tbsp oil and mushrooms, allow to brown 1-2 minutes.

4.  Slice sausage and add to skillet, allowing to brown.

5.  Add butternut squash and dried cranberries and drizzle with remaining olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Add black pepper and red pepper flakes.  Stir well and cover for 5 minutes.

6.  Add pasta to skillet and toss.  Cover for 2-3 minutes.

7.  Serve with goat cheese sprinkled on top to taste.

I love the combination of flavors in this.  You get a little spicy and a little sweet.  I love that it is a delicious pasta without red sauce (not that I don’t love red sauce), just something a little different.

Serve this up after your long run tomorrow (or today if you are me)!!

Reinvigorating My Running

My runs lately have been less than inspired, just checking them off of the list of things I have to do each day.  Sometimes that happens, and its okay but it was nice to be able to have some time to give myself a kick in the pants today.

It started with the email I got last night…

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So that was pretty exciting, very far away, but exciting!

I spent some time this morning before heading out for my run reading Runner’s World which always inspires me and actually spent a decent amount of time stretching (go figure).

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And guess what? I had a great run.  It was hot and humid and by the end of 10 miles I was ready to be done, but it was a good one.  It is crazy how much taking 30 minutes to prep your mind and body to hit the road will make a difference in how it goes!!

I know I won’t take as much time before my long run tomorrow but I will certainly take more time than it takes to shove a banana down my throat.

Good luck on your long runs tomorrow everyone!!

I Got Problems

I must have done something to make the running gods angry because this week things are just not going so hot.

1.  There is literally a 100% chance of rain here on Sunday.  That was the planned day for my 20 miler but I’m sorry, thats just not going to happen so I will be taking on my final 20 tomorrow instead.  I think I can handle 5 miles in the rain Sunday but I want to enjoy my 20 (well for a while anyway) thank you very much.

2. I have a concerning hip flexor issue.  So riddle me this (and I am about to get my physical therapy degree in like a month, I should be able to figure this out).  I have sharp, stabbing hip flexor pain only on my right side that only happens when I run.  I have pretty much had this since I did my speed work Tuesday.  Not when I walk, do lunges, squats, stand on my head, NOTHING except the first 1-2 miles of my run.  It dulls out after that amount of distance and by the end of my 8 miles today I didn’t notice it at all (unless I was going up a really big hill –> using my hip flexor a lot).  It is sore to stretch but that is about the only other thing that is a problem.  It even made me look like a ridiculous loser trying to run across the grocery store parking lot in the rain.  It LITERALLY stopped me from being able to run to the front door.  Worst case scenario, it keeps hurting the first few miles of my runs and I can get over it during the race as long as it doesn’t get worse.  But if anyone has had anything like this before, let me know PLEASE.  It is so weird that even my PT brain can’t figure out a solution outside of stretching and icing.

*Disclaimer: I am being the unrealistic patient right now that comes in and says “I have to run 26.2 miles in 2 weeks and I have been training at about 35-50 miles a week for the last 15 weeks and no I won’t rest, but make me better” that is completely unreasonable.

Hopefully this little nuisance (sharp, stabbing, awful, grizzly, mean pain) will just go away tomorrow!

On a better note, I made the recipe from the Runner’s World March issue for dinner tonight and it was amazing!

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It has been an overcast, rainy day and this stew was perfect (even though it was 70).  I just really wanted the portabella mushrooms to be honest.  But I was especially jazzed when Kroger had pre-diced proscuitto saving me that headache.  I highly, highly recommend this recipe.

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Runner’s World Bean Bourguignon

 

Happy Friday everyone!  Hope you have a great, relaxing, fun weekend!

Every Little Bit

In the August issue of Runner’s World magazine there was an article called Sitting is the New Smoking- Even for Runners.

Photo Credit: Runner's World

Photo Credit: Runner’s World

This is the second time I have talked about this on my blog so obviously it made a big impression on me.  Lucky for me this “sitting disease” will only be an issue for me for the next few weeks.  I am fortunate enough to have a job that will keep me on my feet but most people don’t.  I do make an effort in my day while I am still a student to get moving through out my day.

In addition to my 6x 400 intervals today I took four 12 minute bike rides (to and from class twice) and a half hour walk to get back to class one more time.  So after my half hour of running I got a bonus hour and 15 minutes of exercise that I didn’t even think about.  I realize again that this is the luxurious life of a student and this is not realistic for the average person.

So what can people with “normal” jobs do on the reg?  Once an hour try one of these:

  • up and down 2 flights of stairs
  • 10 squats at a desk chair
  • 10 walking lunges
  • 5 minute walk around the office
  • 20 calf raises

Another trick is to just drink a lot of water so that you have to get up and use the bathroom more often.  These are all quick and simple and won’t take more than a few minutes from your work day.  They will also help you feel more energized and are a more effective jolt than a cup of coffee might!

Every little bit helps, remember that with every extra step you take in a day!

Feel free to leave other alternatives you may do through your day to keep you active at your desk job!

Digging Deep

This past week, running has been absolutely brutal.  It has finally become a true Charleston summer and I have been dying of heat (and not just while I am running).  We have been reaching 100 degree days with “feels like” temperature of 115 degrees.  It also doesn’t help that I haven’t been getting up to run in the morning this past week so I have been waiting until the evening, but even then it is still scorching hot.  It honestly just hasn’t been fun; lead legs, dehydration, 15 straight weeks of running 6 days/week it is just all getting to me.  Luckily I only have 3 and 1/2 weeks of training left and I will be going back to school in a week so I will be more motivated to get up early again.  I just can’t get myself out of bed at 5:30 am when I have nothing going on the rest of the day.

Luckily, I had taken a picture of a passage in Runner’s World that I knew I would need to read, probably sometime soon.  I stumbled across it yesterday, timed perfectly:

“It’s an amazing thing, running- especially at that maximum turnover.  It’s also amazing to never do something again because you can’t.  I’d like to transfer that concept into everyone’s head, because inevitably it will happen to all of us.” 

~Andre Kajlich,

August 2013 Runners World

As brutal as my runs have been of late, I can still do it, and in the end that is all that matters.