MarathonMaiden's Blog

December 3, 2010

I’m Going To TEXAS.


I’ll never forget when I told one of the women I work with:

ME: Hey! Guess where I’m going in two weeks.
Friend: (with a weary expression): Texas?
Friend: (with same expression): Why would you want to go to Texas?
ME: Because it’s AWESOME.  And I’m running a MARATHON there.

Can you tell how excited I was? Well I still am.  And I’m quite likely high above the skies.  Or in an airport in Philly depending on when you’re reading this as I’ve scheduled this sucker for my layover, I think.  But whatever.  It’s FRIDAY.  Which means I’m on my way to DALLAS.

Sorry. I really couldn't help myself with this one. It's been killing me to refrain this long as it is.

And I’m on my way to run a MARATHON.  This will be my 3rd marathon.  And my 3rd state in doing so.  Cool beans.

I’m wicked excited to be finally on my way.  To meet up with some really cool people, both new and old friends.  To finally meet my running sistaaaaaaaaaaa.  I’m going to a RW Marathon Dailies dinner tonight which will be great.  I owe those peeps so much that it’ll be amazing to tell them in person!!

Before I risk getting all teary eyed, I’m going to share the muffin recipe that I promised earlier this week. ENJOY!


Apple Cinnamon could quite possibly be my favorite flavor combo in the world.  I mean, I love others but this one I never get sick of.

This week, during my taper aka RACE WEEK, when I was not getting texts from my friend telling me to not run, I decided that it would be a good time to catch up on my reading (I checked out several good books from the libs before Thanksgiving for this reason) as well as baking.  I went on a kick at the end of October.  As in I baked two things.  In November I baked once, well twice if you count this recipe even though I’m posting it in December as I wanted to be able to put something up while I’m away.

Anyway, since I love Apples and Cinnamon and I love things that are easy to both cook/bake AND eat I decided to make muffins as I really couldn’t think of a good way to incorporate Apples and Cinnamon into cookies.  I guess I could have made cupcakes but aren’t muffins pretty much cupcakes?

So I googled “Easy Apple Cinnamon Muffins” and this recipe popped out. I copied and pasted the ingredients and directions from the AllRecipes site I took it from, my changes are italicized although I didn’t make many changes.

I debated taking the lazy man’s way out and using a box.  But I actually had all the ingredients and would have had to go out and buy a box.

Staying in semi-warm apartment with fully stocked (or at least for this recipe) pantry > Going out in the cold for easy baking.


Oops.  Again I forgot to take a picture until most of them were gone


Actual muffins:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 2 apples – peeled, cored and chopped (we chopped them very finely)

Crumbly top:

  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed (I think you should know by now I use margarine)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease six muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners. (we used muffin liners and the oven was at 425*F. This recipe is for 6 jumbo muffins or 12 regular muffins.  I chose 12 regular muffins.)
  2. Stir together 1 1/2 cup flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt, baking powder and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Mix in oil, egg and milk. Fold in apples. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling to the top of the cup.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, butter and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix together with fork and sprinkle (liberally) over unbaked muffins.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean. (it took closer to 30 considering my oven and recipes don’t see eye to eye with baking time)

So there you go 🙂

I kind of wish I had made lots of extra to take on the plane rides with me.  I’m sure I could use all the extra carbs for my leg-os right now.

Enjoy the start to the weekend y’all.  I’m pretty sure mine is going to be really fun, no matter what happens on Sunday.


September 4, 2010

Getting Ready To Put My Miles To Use

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 10:00

I’m glad everyone agrees that ANTM missed out on this:

I believe we are trying to "shake it like a salt shaker" here. Ahaha I ❤ my friends. Oh to be young and drunk again!

Can you believe that they told me that in order to be a model I had to either A) lose 15-20 lbs to be a regular model or B) gain 15-20 lbs to be a “full figured” model.  Ummmmmm no?  Oh well.  Like lots of you said: their loss!  Sorry Tyra but you missed out.

Whew.  I had such a long day on Thursday at work! It was our lottery day.  Since we’re a free clinic, in order to be fair to enrolling new patients, we hold a lottery at the beginning of each month.  I’m not going to do into great details of it but let’s just say that any type of lottery is crazy.  It counts double for people without health coverage who want to have health care.

While I felt like I had aged about 10+ years after leaving clinic, the upshot was that I got to fall asleep at 2215 on Thursday night.  This is about 1.5 hours earlier than I usually go to bed.  And since the next day was Friday and  I only had to go into work for a few hours to generate some monthly numbers I got to get up an hour later than usual.  Netting me an extra 2 hours (not 2.5 because I think I was tossing an turning a bit)

Plus even with the sleeping in I got to do a longer run.  It was one of those runs where, given that I have a half marathon this weekend, was stupid to run so far.  But I was feeling REALLY good by the end and wanted to capitalize on it.  Hopefully it doesn’t hurt me on Sunday. I doubt it because I’ve done it before.

Gosh I really have such bad habits for a runner!

Here are the stats for my run on 3-Sept-2010 (Friday)

  • 1st loop: 4.1 miles @ 9:08
  • 2nd loop: 4.1 miles @ 8:51
  • 1st add on: 1.1 miles @ 8:23
  • 2nd add on: 1.1 miles @ 8:16
  • Total: 10.4 miles @ 8:51

Annoyingly (and I literally ran these numbers many many times) the second 4.1 loop was the exact pace as the overall.  Which bothered me because I felt that with two “add-ons” the average pace overall should have DROPPED.  But DUH the total of those two loops was small.  So the overall impact is small.

I like to think of it like baseball.  At the beginning of the season, small fluctuations in strikeouts and hits make big impacts on batting average but as the season goes on (and like with my running where my loops are big vs. small) then there is more data into the stats and the small stuff doesn’t impact the overall picture.  I have no idea if that made sense or if it is random hodge-podge but my brain is fried and I felt like typing that out.

You love my randomness 🙂

After work (where after last week I decided to skip the coffee haha) I loaded up my car (in the rain because silly hurricane Earl decided to bless me with his presence) and headed back to my hometown.  Driving in a hurricane? Since I was born and raised in New England I can safely say that I can drive through anything.  I wish other drivers could say the same.  My thoughts are that if you don’t feel like you can drive in bad weather (the same goes for winter snow) then don’t go out.  Because I’m going to curse at you and be angry.

Especially when the hurricane isn’t really a hurricane.  I realize that there were times when I couldn’t see but there were also plenty of times where there was no rain at all.  And thus no need to drive 20 mph.  Granted I see no reason to ever drive 20 mph but hey…to each his own haha.

So that’s where I am now (home). Although since I wrote this Friday and am posting on Saturday I might actually be in the car with LACEY heading up to our half.  I’m pumped for it.

This will be my third time running this race.

I ran it for the first time in 2007 as my VERY FIRST RACE EVER (so wow 3 years of racing?! My how time flies).  And I remember thinking how hard it was running fast on the hills (NH = hill country) and I also remember telling my friends who was there to support me how I could not see how it was possible that they had run TWICE that.  Oh how things change, right?

But it was a solid debut race for me (1:47:47 if I’m not mistaken) and I was bitten by the racing bug.

I didn’t run it in 2008 due to logistical issues with getting there and some school commitments.  But I ran it again last year and actually found out after the fact that Lacey was there! I didn’t know her at that point (I think we met later that month?) but very small world!  I pr’d this year (and was in the top 5 women? Can’t remember and I’m too lazy to check haha) which is always fun.  It’s my current PR of 1:41:56, as I haven’t run a half since then.

So I have some history with this race.  And I’m running it WITH someone rather than all alone.  This makes everything so much better.  Especially since I’m also staying with Lacey overnight.  Yes she really is as nice as she is on her blog 😀

I’ve run a couple races with her too.  The Tufts 10k last fall as well as the Eastern States 20 miler this past March. Hopefully this experience will be much better than Eastern.  Like infinitesimally better.

I mean, we’re hardcore bamfs and all buttttt a little nice weather and aligned stars wouldn’t hurt 😉

Since I’m going to be away for the weekend, and thus not taking my computer with me, I hope everyone has a fabulous Labor Day weekend! I’ll be back with how the race went though sometime soon.  So don’t you worry!

But a giveaway from Miss Zippy first.

July 22, 2010

In West Philadelphia

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 10:35

Except we didn’t go there 🙂

So I’ve been lazy with blogging.  Lazy being a relative terms as I’m currently running around like a chicken with my head cut off.  Who knew that taking a week off of class would stress me out so much?!

That said, I’m slowly getting back into the swing of things.  At least in terms of my work.  My last content class is tonight *GASP* and I’m excited and yet scared.  Definitely means that I should be ready to rock my next practice exam over the weekend.  Talk about pressure (and oh wait I have my respiratory system chapter out and am reading about negative pressure breathing.  Oh I am a nerd)

But rather than bore you with my woe-is-me and studying tales I think that a Philly recap is in order? So here are some highlights — some running related, others not so much:

And yes I know this is long.  But I don’t know when the next time I’ll have to sit down and blog is and I don’t want to keep you hanging.  But there are pictures.  That counts for something 🙂

First the overall non-running stuff: I had a blast.  Sure I was there for job training (which is always boring) but I met some awesome people who are going to be serving in the same city as I am.  This will be AWESOME when I actually move there and need to have friends.  Specifically friends who understand that VISTA-ing means poverty.  I also met some amazing people that aren’t serving near me but we went out for happy hour every night.  Seriously.  One of the girls I met and I really became close (she even came out to bar-hop with me and my high school friends that weekend!) and I can definitely see us traveling to hang out in the future.  Provided, of course, that we have money to do so haha.

Now the running.  Because I do call myself a runner.  Although before I get into the specifics I do want to mention that this trip chilled me out with regards to running.  Obviously I couldn’t run as much as I did pre-trip because I was so busy and happy hour > running extra.  This has carried over into the past few days back, partly because I need to play catchup with work and partly because I broke that chain of needing to do more to feel good.  So post-trip I’ve just been doing nice easy runs that are less than an hour.  Crazy right?

Tuesday July 13th: Train ride.  UGH to a 6 hour trip.  I did get some studying done, however, but man 6 hours sitting down is rough.  And because of when my train left and arrived and when orientation actually started I didn’t get to run.  Sad face.  But since I really can’t remember my last rest day (because such a thing really does exist) it was probably a good thing.

Wednesday July 14th: Run on hotel TM.  I tried to get my roommate for the trip to join me because she was a runner too but I was up at 0530 for it.  Not exactly what a 20-something wants to be doing.  I wasn’t 100% comfortable running through the city on my own and, since every night happy hour happened every day including the first one, I figured a run where I didn’t have to think was appropriate.

Thursday July 15th: RUN WITH FLO.  Okay so she beat me to the punch and mentioned me on her blog here and I’m lame and just mentioning it now but still. We ran along some river that I cannot and will never be able to pronounce for a couple miles.  It was great to actually meet her in person and she is hilarious.  I wish I lived closer to Philly so I could run with her more.  We ran together for maybe 5 miles and then I had my trip to/from the hotel plus a bit more to make it 9 or so.

Friday July 16th: I ended up running along the river again.  This time sans Flo.  I did, however, run past her which put some pep in my step because it’s always nice to see a familiar face when running.  I think I essentially ran the exact same route as the day before, but extended it a bit to make it 10 miles because I wasn’t sleeping well and was up early (and speaking of sleep I slept poorly the entire time I was at the hotel! Annoying!).  The scenery on the river was absolutely beautiful and reminded me a little bit of running along the Charles back “home” in Boston.  I didn’t take any pictures during the run (although I wish I had!) but here’s one I pulled off of google

Friday was my last day of training which was bittersweet.  On one hand I was soooo happy to be done with the actual orientation as there’s so much of it I can take at one time.  I was also happy because that means I can start my job next month and I’m really excited to be carrying out the VISTA mission at the clinic.  But I was sad because, like I mentioned, I made some really awesome friends and it sucks to know that I won’t be seeing some of them again.  But luckily, thanks to texting and facebook, I’ll be able to keep in touch.

After I was sworn in as a VISTA my friends from high school swung by my hotel and we went sightseeing.  I’d never been to Philly before so I wanted to do all the classic touristy stuff.  I’m also a huge nerd and wanted to see all the historic things.  Granted I live in a very colonial era so nothing was new to me but it was cool to see the same timeline but just in a different city.

I know that there’s so much writing here! But here are some pictures of the highlights. With minimal commentary (you know that I’ll never give up total commentary 🙂 )

City of Brotherly Love


Massachusetts represent! Side note: I don't think I was actually suppose to touch the flag. Oops.

Paddy's Pub @ 1630. We went to see Benji Franklin's grave after this and I was slightly tipsy. Oops.

After the sightseeing we went out to dinner and bar-hopping.  I don’t have any pictures of that but it was fun.  Lots of drinking and dancing.  One of the places we went to played old school BSB, *NSync, Britney and some Miley.  Ummm I was in heaven haha.

We stumbled home around 0300.  Not a bad thing but I wake up at 0800 no matter what time my head hits the pillow.  Which was the case here.  Since my friends are not as blessed as I am I took the opportunity to get a run in.  You know, work out all the alcohol that was likely sitting in my system.  It was really hot and humid at this time (definitely moreso than the 0530 runs I had been doing during training) and since I don’t live there I have no idea how far I ran.  I did run for 81 minutes which if I go wicked conservative on the pace is 9 miles.  So that’s what it’s written down as.  Hahah.

The rest of the afternoon was spent at Longwood Gardens which is a HUGE garden.  It was absolutely beautiful and stunning and amazing.  And I got to have an authentic Philly pretzel.  Yum.

Later that night we went to a more “college” bar scene which was fun.  While waiting in line for the restroom, my friend and I were told that we were “too beautiful for your own good”.  Ummmm yeah.  Awkward. Hahah.  Sadly I don’t have any pictures of that night either.  I do know that my friend has a really cute one but I’m going to have to wait and steal it when she puts it up on FB.  I’ll update either this post or a future one with it because I remember liking it. The night ended with us at a diner at 0200.  Good times 🙂

Yet again, after another late night I got up early.  I hit the streets but only for 36 minutes (~4 miles?).  All the drinking and dancing and not greatest eating definitely was taking it’s toll on me so I cut the run shorter than typical. But it was still good.  Hot but good.

My friends and I then went to a local creamery and got amazing ice cream and saw lots of farm animals.  Then before I knew it the time had come to board the train back to Boston.  Very sad moment.  Especially since the train was delayed two hours and I got back home at midnight.  Ugh.  But again, lots of studying so the trip wasn’t too bad.

Ummmm there you have it? I apologize again for the length of it (and spelling/grammar mistakes!) but I didn’t want to keep you guys hanging by breaking it up.  Life is very crazy at the moment and I should get back to studying.  MCAT boot camp week is almost over (class every night = no bueno) and I just have to push through the full length this weekend and I’ll get some breathing room to focus on the stuff I’m shaky on rather than keep reading new stuff.  Or maybe not as I have to pack and move, finalize my medical school application, and take another vacation.  All before starting my job on the 16th of August.

Did I mention that I love being busy? Because it would sure suck to be me if I didn’t 🙂

Hope everyone has a great Thursday and a wonderful weekend! I’m still in the process of catching up on your blogs so don’t think I’m ignoring you!

June 21, 2010

I Think That I’ve Found My New Training Plan

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 12:00

First: Happy first day of summer.  Longest day of the year today  🙂

Nope no race on the horizon or anything like that but (and here’s major NERD alert coming) there is a mathematical law to my running that looks like this:

Running α drinks consumed
Running  α 1/sleep

Seriously.  For those of you who aren’t as awesome as me don’t love math that much: that fish symbol means “proportional to” and over the past few years I’ve definitely seen my running go easier / faster when I’m running on no sleep (or very little) and having been out the night before.  Guess that’s something to ponder the next time I’m training for something.

But backing up: this weekend was pretty sweet as I got to meet and run with JESS.  She’s pretty much the nicest person ever too.  She was in Boston for the weekend on a fun trip and, since I live outside the city, I thought it would be cool to run together. I kind of suggested running in jest, she’s A LOT faster than me, but she was up for it and we settled on getting together on Saturday morning.

We ran along the Charles, which as I am not from the city, I had never done before.  And omg it was gorgeous.  I kind of wish I had brought my camera (Jess said the same thing) but I never bring my camera anywhere anymore.  Oops. There were also a lot of runners out running, rowers on the water.  It was kind of weird to see so many people out.  Cool but weird.  Normally when I run at home I rarely see others out.

The actual run itself was great too.  The pace felt really good/easy (and surprise: little sleep the night before!) and we chatted the whole time.   Before we knew it the time had come to turn around and head back to her hotel.  We ended up with 7 miles in pretty much an hour exactly.  When we got back to the hotel her travel mates were all still asleep and we went back out for 2 more miles.  And since they were still asleep when we got back from that we walked up and down Newbury Street for a bit.

It was so much fun getting to meet her and, because she’s so nice, she invited me to hang out with them all day.  I declined as I had to study lots as well as I didn’t want to intrude on their vacation at all.  We did end up hanging out again that night and going out and it was fun to see her in a non-running setting because that’s the only way I knew her before.  Although, you know what was disappointing? No accents.  I know I said this a billion times that night, and her friends must think I’m the most annoying person *ever*, but I was really hoping for some strong accents.  Bummer.

And just to reiterate how awesome she is: she insisted I stay the night in the city so I didn’t have to worry about heading back out to the suburbs.  Amazingly nice (as were all her friends too).

Here’s where the whole “running-is-awesome-on-no-sleep” comes in.  I got back home ~11am.  The sun was out and it was pretty hot (although I feel weird complaining about the heat here as Jess was saying how much *nicer* it is here) but I needed something to refocus me before studying.  I figured that a short run would be good for that (duh — what else would I think?) but I ended up running 14.2 miles.  And fast too. Without getting up and checking what I wrote down my pace was, I’m going to say 8:27 and that sounds right.  I know it was under 8:30.  Ummm what?

Definitely the longest single run I’ve done in awhile as well as easily one of the fastest, if not ever than at least in recent memory.  I didn’t want to stop but thinking about the studying I had to do threw me into a panic and I nixed it. Too bad.  When I’m running well I always want to take advantage because I’m so paranoid that it’s going to go away and never return.

But a great run. Even better because I didn’t see that lady and she has NOT called me yet.  I’m kind of praying she doesn’t at all.  Maybe she forgot my number.  Wouldn’t that be nice.  I loved reading all your advice too about what to do.  Hoping that I don’t need it though.  Although, like I said last time: I’m too damn nice for my own good.

Oh well and  despite having a great run, the rest of the day was spent feeling a bit under the weather.  Apparently, and after all my MCAT studying this little tidbit must have gotten pushed out of my brain, alcohol is dehydrating.  I’m also notoriously bad at hydrating.  And since I love math here’s another equation for you:

alcohol the night before + 90* temps + running – water =/= good.

So I kind of spent the rest of the day recouping and staying low key.  Just as well because I hadn’t done such a long run in awhile nor had I really gone out and stayed out so late in awhile (oh thanks MCAT).  I also have various bruises and other marks from Saturday night which I discovered while lounging about.  Which I do remember getting but in that “ooooooooh yeah” sense.

Third equation:

alcohol + accident prone girl = ouch

But the laying low this was kind of a good thing (as you probably already know that relaxing is not my forte), and I’m trying to see the positive side here, I was able to get some quality studying done that day too.  Which I really should get back too but I keep playing this on repeat.  And it makes me want a dance party.  Real bad.

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