New England is a Harsh Mistress, or Seafood Soup

Christ, I think I earned my wings as a New England runner today. That’s a thing, yeah? But seriously. Today it was about 10 degrees out, but with windchill? More like below zero. Awesome.

Of course I had a 7 mile run on the schedule today. I had two options. One was drive to the gym and run on the treadmill like a civilized human being. The other was to put on my big kid pants and run outside like a goddamn beast. Well who has time to spend on a silly commute to the gym? Not me, obviously, so I sucked down some leftover octopus soup (told you I was a beast, more on that later) and layered up. I intended on making this weather my bitch.

You know the feeling you get when you first jump into a cold body of water? You kind of gasp? And your body is shocked? That is what this run felt like most of the time, but I am so glad I got out there. I did not give a damn about pace and just tried to keep going. I did it and I felt great afterwards. This run, I think, was about building mental toughness more than physical toughness. And that’s an important thing for me to work on! I’m pretty good at talking myself out of doing things I don’t want to do. So I’m trying to get better at convincing myself things like running in frigid weather is actually good for me in the long run. Now that doesn’t mean I won’t be doing my recovery run on the treadmill tomorrow!

Aside from freezing runs my life has been filled with tiny, lovely fun times like COOKING AN OCTOPUS!

ready to braise these bad boys!

ready to braise these bad boys!

Let me re-iterate the fact that I am an absolute doofus in the kitchen. Everybody tells me “But cooking is easy you just follow the recipe, dummy!”. Look, chumps, I manage to screw up the simplest recipe. Example: THE INFAMOUS PANCAKE INCIDENT. I don’t think I have to go into detail, but I will tell you I managed to mess up pancakes in a spectacular way. I’m just absent-minded and easily distracted in the kitchen. Joe will ask me to chop veggies. I will get the cutting board out then promptly get distracted by my dog or a text message or a stupid youtube video and wander away. Yeah, I’m an ace at cooking.

The good news is Whole30 has gone a LONG way in improving my cooking! I ain’t no pro, but I’ve certainly gotten more comfortable in the kitchen. Perhaps I’m getting too cocky too fast because on Sunday I thought it would be a great idea to purchase octopus and attempt to cook it. After purchasing said octopi I discovered that preparing it was quite involved. Oh well! I promised to cook it and I refused to be felled by an uppity sea creature.

It turns out preparing octopus takes a lot of TIME, but really isn’t too difficult at all! And it’s SO TASTY! If you want to brave cooking this squishy delicacy check out this site:

I’ve also had the great fortune of having TWO glorious days off in a row this week. A magical occurrence that I try to embrace whole heartedly. On Sunday I celebrated my freedom with an 11 mile run (long runs are BACK, baby) and playtime with my pup on the beach. My little monster loves swimming in the ocean (even when it’s freezing out!) and playing fetch more than he loves most things. Except maybe food.

so happy

so happy

I also started a little indoor herb garden. This is what happens to me when I can’t drink. I become strangely productive and involve myself in weird crafts. I should confess Joe had to help me because if there’s one thing I’m stupider with than the kitchen it’s tools of any kind. Regardless, I love my little herbs and I’ve already used them in several recipes. I used this site to make ‘em, but I went sans chalkboard paint. Too fancy for my blood.

probably more proud of this than I should be

probably more proud of this than I should be

I’m on Day 18 of Whole30! I’m starting to understand this whole “Tiger Blood” thing people are talking about. I feel great, and I’m loving the food I’m eating. Last night was temptation city because I had to be at a bar filled with free pizza (staff meeting), but I persevered and had delicious butternut squash soup waiting for me at home. And raspberries for dessert. Mmmm.

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One Response to New England is a Harsh Mistress, or Seafood Soup

  1. sweatykid says:

    Ahh, I agree so much about the mental toughness aspect. That’s what winter running is about in so many ways — just building up the toughness foundation. And I think that can happen both outside in extreme conditions and inside on the treadmill (where you can learn to work your mind through monotony in a way that you can’t necessarily do outside…)

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