September 30, 2012

26.2 - A Journey, Not a Destintion

"The marathon is a charismatic event. It has everything. It has drama. It has competition. It has camaraderie. It has heroism. Every jogger can't dream of being an Olympic champion, but he can dream of finishing a marathon."
               - Fred Lebow, Co-Founder of the New York City Marathon

Back in January, I decided that 2012 was the year I would run a marathon. Of course, I put my name in for the New York City lottery and said a little prayer. In April, when New York didn't pan out, I decided that I would run the Monumental Marathon in Indianapolis. I have had friends run it who have said that it is a great first marathon. Plus, it's in Indy --> my second home. The course actually runs through Butler's campus. How awesome is that!?!

For all of my Indy friends (and anyone else who wants to come to town & cheer me on, here's a map of the course.

Coaching Cross Country has made training extremely easy. Keeping up my weekly mileage and long runs were easy & fun. The marathon is November 3rd, so I started my longer training runs in September. 13, easy. 15, not bad, 18 - I might have spent the entire day in bed after finishing the run...and that brings us to today's 20 miler. 

After the Downtown Doubler (30K) two weeks ago, I was a bit nervous about the jump up to 20. What I remembered this morning, never underestimate the power of a running buddy. Kari & I met at 7:30 and started our 20 mile journey on the Ohio River Greenway (which I didn't know existed until today, by the way). I have run different parts of it on shorter runs, but didn't realized it connected for so far. Miles 1-16 were easy. By that 17th mile marker I was feeling myself start to slow down. Then I remembered that I only had a 5K left. Psh. 5Ks - I run those every day! 

It's such a great feeling - running 20 miles. It was an even better feeling when after a shower, lunch & 2 hour nap, I actually felt human! We'll see if that changes when I wake up this morning. If any of my co-workers are reading this - I might or might not be able to get out of bed and come to work tomorrow!

34 days to go. Only 1 final training run between now & then. It's so close, I can feel it. I can't wait to cross that finish line & cross the marathon off of my bucket list :)

September 6, 2012

Are You Ready For Some Football?!

Last year, on one of those nights I couldn't sleep, I found myself watching reruns of The League on FX. After those first few episodes, I was hooked. Thanks to Netflix, coffee, & lack of a social life, I watched the entire show in one weekend.  I decided that I wanted to grow up and be just like Jenny MacArthur….until I remembered that my football knowledge revolved around Peyton Manning and the fact that we’re getting married someday (don’t tell Justin) and that usually by halftime of a football game, I am more focused on enjoying the spinach dip than what is happening on TV.

So I went back to Plan A: Cheering for the Colts and tweeting about how much I love the Drew Brees NyQuil commercials. It was working really well for me…and then I got myself one of those boyfriend people…who happens to know a lot about football.  

Which leads me to his Fantasy Football draft. I put on my Jenny MacArthur hat and reminded him daily, hourly in fact, that Peyton Manning was the way to go (no longer a Colt :( but still my future husband :) ). I can only imagine the number of eye rolls that happened over the phone & via text message that week. You can imagine my excitement when I received this text message on draft night…

 I got Manning….

In fact, my exact response was, “WHOOP WHOOP!”

I’m telling myself that my “statistics” helped him arrive at his draft pick (he’s so cute…did you see the Buick commercial…Eli is his little brother…I lived in Indy for four years...he likes oreos…of course that’s a real fact, just pick him!).

Jump ahead to last night’s kickoff game (fun fact: did you know that it was the first Wednesday night game since 1948?). I turned the game on for background noise while I was pinning new recipes, fabulous outfits, and decorating tips. I had just talked to Justin, and I swear I was listening when he told me who I should be rooting for. A few minutes into the first quarter, our texting convo went something like this:

Me: I already forgot who I’m supposed to be cheering for tonight…
 The Boy: Ahmad Bradshaw, number 44. Giants. Dez Bryant, number 88. Cowboys .
(What a good boyfriend, giving me numbers instead of positions so I would know who to watch for!)
…a few minutes later...

 Me: Eli is such a cutie. I think I’ll cheer for him instead :)
(I’m such a supportive girlfriend)
The Boy: Eli is a mouth breather
 (How rude! Talking about my future brother-in-law like that!!)
 Me: You’re cute. I’d cheer for you if you played football
 The Boy: I played in high school
 (Join the NFL, buddy, and we’ll talk)

Next thing I knew, it was halftime aka bedtime for yours truly. So I went to sleep dreaming about football season and all of the wonderful things that come with it…tailgating, chili, hot chocolate, hoodies, crunchy leaves, boots!, and snuggling with my awesome boyfriend on a chilly fall evening.

Who else is looking forward to Sunday? I sure am…Go Colts (and Go Peyton)

September 3, 2012

Celebrating Kentucky

It’s that time of year again…football is back! I don’t really consider myself a diehard fan of any team (although, I suppose I’m a UT fan this year!), but I always cheer for my hometown team, University of Louisville. Yesterday UofL kicked off their season playing the University of Kentucky for the Governor’s Cup. Justin and I went out to my uncle’s to watch the game. He was very brave rocking his blue shorts in a house full of Cardinal fans…luckily he forgot his UK shirt in Knoxville :) 

After we watched UofL kick some UK butt, we kept on celebrating the state of Kentucky. What a better way than having Kentucky Hot Browns for dinner followed by Derby Pie for dessert! I was a little nervous heading into the kitchen. No one wants to mess up the famous hot brown! Ours didn't turn out quite as amazing as The Brown Hotel's famous dish, but it was pretty freakin’ delicious. I used a slightly different recipe than what is on their website.

Here’s What You Need:
½ cup butter
½ cup all-purpose flour
3 cups milk
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 pound roasted turkey
1 tomato
8 slices white bread, toasted
8 slices bacon

Here’s What You Do:
Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
Stir in flour with whisk & continue to cook and stir until it begins to brown. 
Gradually whisk in the milk until all lumps are gone. 
Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. 
Mix in ¼ cup of parmesan cheese & then stir in the beaten egg to thicken. 
Do not allow the sauce to boil once the egg has been mixed in!
Remove from heat & stir in heavy cream.

Preheat the oven’s broiler. 
For each Hot Brown, place 2 slices of toast into the bottom of a casserole dish. 
Layer turkey and tomato slices over the toast. 
Cover with sauce & sprinkle with remaining parmesan cheese.

Place the dish under the broiler and cook 5-10 minutes until the top is speckled brown. 
Remove from broiler and arrange 2 slices of bacon on top of each sandwich.
Serve immediately & ENJOY!

To Make the Derby Pie, Here’s What You’ll Need:
½ cup melted butter
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
¾ cup of chocolate chips
¾ cup pecans
Pie crust  (9 inch)

This is such an easy recipe! Here's What You Do:
Here’s What You Do:
Combine all ingredients and mix
(Slip in an extra 1/4 cup of Chocolate Chips when Justin's not looking)
Bake in pie crust at 350 for 45 minutes
Serve & ENJOY!

Our Taste of Kentucky meal turned out wonderfully! The best part was the leftovers that we got to enjoy today. We took our Holiday seriously and spent the entire day relaxing and eating. I hope you guys all had a fabulous, relaxing Labor Day too :) 

We're really, really bad at taking pictures of ourselves :)