Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Running, life etc.


Next month I am competing (how ridiculous it seems to use that word) in the half marathon that is part of the Melbourne Marathon Festival. It will be my second half, so I have some idea what to expect, but my first since the unpleasantness of my metatarsal stress fractures. Since April, I have been back in my usual routine of alternate day runs around Princes Park, ranging from two to five laps, with a couple of runs with the Running Fit run group thrown in. With just over a month to go, I have yet to have a trial of 21.1km, or even the 6-lap runs I managed on weekends before the Run Melbourne half I did last year.

I feel moderately queasy about this, and would have hoped to have got my long run miles up by now. However, the joys of a paediatrics rotation has meant that I have spent much of the last two months with a succession of viral and other infections, requiring a bit more rest/antibiotics/sneaky steroids.

I am hoping that with my Women’s rotation coming up next, I am going to be less exposed to novel pathogens. Plus the weather is picking up, making morning runs much less unpleasant.

(As a parting gift from the Children’s Hospital, I have come down with a sore throat and big nodes again. Thanks kids. Appreciated. 

I am using this, courtesy of my lovely friend R. The Engrish states that it contains semen, which just goes to show why you shouldn't rely on Google Translate.)

Food Finds
“Gluten free” oats, from Terra Madre (also spotted at La Manna Organics; Aunt Maggie’s) have made a welcome addition to breakfast, in the form of overnight oats. Particularly good when soaked in Bonsoy (my birthday splurge). The Australian official line is that GF oats aren’t really a thing, contrary to what is acceptable in the UK and US. I’ve not noticed any symptomatic response either way, but that doesn’t mean much.

GF Weet-Bix - surely a misnomer, since there is no wheat. I’ve tried the plain sorghum ones, which taste pretty much like normal Weet-Bix, i.e. blah. On the plus side, vitamin and mineral fortified and fairly low in sugar (especially compared with other cereals). Bought as a novelty, and not very rationally at that, since I don’t actually like Weet-Bix. Even so, I am still prepared to give the sunflower seed version a go. God, the gullibility of neophilia.

Pistachio nut butter - from Terra Madre. Another birthday splurge and well worth every cent. This did not last long.

“Ridiculously Good” peanut butter - from the local IGA. I’d hesitate to say it really is ridiculously good. It’s pretty good. It’s better than bog standard peanut butter, but given the cost you’d want it to be. The Murray River salt is a nice addition, but I don’t think it offers more than the fresh PB you can get at Terra Madre, Wholefoods etc for a lot less money.

Loving Earth Caramel Chocolate - this is pretty good, but I probably won’t buy again since I really prefer the very, very dark and bitter chocolate. (That said, I’m open to trying the Salted Caramel variant.)

Parsnips - not a food find, but the first time in ages that I’ve had them. I’d forgotten how great they are roasted.

Domino’s GF pizza - the first time in my life I have bought takeaway pizza, and my embarrassment at going somewhere like Domino’s (as opposed to a nice, independent, doesn’t-advertise-on-TV place) was overcome when I discovered that the pizza is actually pretty good. Then again, with an extra fee of 2.95 for the GF base, it’s to be hoped.

Mayver’s Dark Chocolate Super Spread - this is basically crack, and I don’t trust myself to buy it again.

Hemp - eating hemp seeds is about as rebellious as I get. I had hemp milk in England (thanks Tesco!) and loved it. The DIY version works just as well, and I’ve enjoyed sprinkling the seeds onto salad, smoothies etc.

Balls - i.e. dried fruit and nuts blitzed in the Vitamix. I cannot bring myself to use the other terms for them e.g. Bliss Balls (so vile). I like adding protein powder, maca, mesquite, cacao and have found that those ingredients will also successfully mask spirulina and other (thoroughly revolting) green powders. I find 100g dates, 50g nuts, 10g protein powder works as a template.

Cauliflower "pizza" - this was an epic fail, and I blame my oven which alternates between burning everything or creating a hot, soggy mess.