I ran outside in shorts yesterday! In Madison, Wisconsin! In January! Yesterday we had a freak warm day of 54*, and today we are supposed to get 4-6 inches of snow. Go figure. But it made me really excited for spring!
I split up a longer run yesterday. I was supposed to run 7 miles easy, so I ran 3 miles in the morning and 5 miles in the afternoon. A lot of people doing longer training runs will split their miles. No single run prepares you to run a marathon. Instead, it is the result of logging in the miles over several months so that your body get used to running for long periods of time. You are building muscle endurance. Therefore, many runners advocate that you reap the same benefits (and maybe even more) by splitting your long run into two separate runs since you are not overwhelming your body during one training session. Not to mention the benefits of time–it is easier to squeeze two shorter runs into your day rather than setting aside a big block of time.
When you split your runs, it is best to do one in the morning and one in the evening of the same day. Alternatively, you could do one training session in the PM of one day and then the second session in the AM of the following day. However, I have read in several places that when splitting runs, it is best to increase your total distance by a little (i.e., I ran a total of 8 miles for my 7-miler since I split it into two training sessions).
Now, my run yesterday wasn’t that long. 7 miles easily takes me under an hour. However, during the week, I like to do a lot of my training in the morning around 5am. Which means in Wisconsin I am on a treadmill. (Dark+ice/snow+cold = no running outside for me). It is much easier to do 3 miles on a treadmill and 5 miles outside. You may be asking, then why didn’t you just do all 7 outside in the afternoon? Well, I was running with coworkers, and one of my coworkers training for Ironman only had a 40 minute run scheduled for yesterday…so 5 was about the max we could do.
As for baking, here is the second recipe for pumpkin bread that I made over the weekend! There was pretty much a tie between the two recipes at my office. This one was more moist and spongy with less pumpkin flavor. Neither one was my absolute favorite–I have other pumpkin bread recipes that I actually like more than both of these. The streusel topping on this one sunk into the bread as it baked (you can tell in the picture)–that has never happened to me before…not sure why that occurred…
As for the Mac-N-Cheese, well, Madame M LOVED it. This made me super excited =) She said she liked it so much that she would order it in a restaurant. “Don’t change a thing about it.” I like those words =) I think this means that YOU need to try my Mac-N-Cheese recipe!
Pumpkin Streusel Loaves
– 1 cup butter, softened
– 1 cup granulated sugar
– 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
– 4 large eggs
– 1 15-ounce can pumpkin
– 2 cups AP flour
– 1.5 tsp baking powder
– 1.5 tsp baking soda
– 1.5 tsp ground cinnamon
– 3/4 tsp salt
– 3/4 cup buttermilk
– Preheat oven to 350*. Spray two 9-inch loaf pans with baking spray and coat with flour.
– In a large bowl, beat butter and next three ingredients at medium speed with a mixer until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add pumpkin.
– In a medium bowl, combine flour and next 4 ingredients. Add to butter mixture, alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture, beating just until combined after each addition. Spoon batter into prepared pans. Sprinkle with Oatmeal Streusel.
– Oatmeal Streusel: In a small bowl combing 1/4 cup quick-cooking oats, 1/4 cup AP flour, 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar and 1 tsp ground cinnamon. Using a pastry blender, cut in 1/4 cup butter (cut into pats) until mixture is crumbly.
– Bake for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove loaves from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.
Adapted from Paula Deen