Sunday, November 29, 2009


New race, family runs, and recipes that work:


It's official! I am now all signed up for my first 50 miler. I'll be running in the Northface Mohican 100/50 mile Trail run. It will be held on June 19, and starts at 5 a.m. along with the 100 mile run. I'm excited to have a new mileage goal to look forward to!


On the home front: My husband is still going strong on his runs. My son has been running more than ever as well! Thanksgiving week they raked up around 30-35 miles of running. We had a spectacular turkey day run at my parents house together. They are going strong and loving it! Yesterday I went out, early a.m. and ran long. When I came home they were ready and waiting, and we went out together to enjoy another family run. Fun times! With my husband and son both committed to the 1/2 marathon this fall, I see a lot of 3-a-days in my future!

Our dog Scooby is enjoying more running as well!


Another tasty recipe that we tried out this week. Quesadilla Pie: It fills you up, and one serving is 440 calories.

1 can chopped green chilies (4.5 oz)
1 can black beans (15 oz)
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1 Roma tomato
1 can enchilada sauce (10 oz)
3 cups Weight Watchers "Mexican" style cheese
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
4 wheat tortillas

Heat oven to 400. Spray a 9 inch glass pie plate w/cooking spray. In a medium bowl, mix chilies, beans, onions, tomato, 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce, and 2 cups of the cheese. Set aside.

Spoon 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce into pie plate. Top with 1 tortilla and 1/3 of the bean mixture. Repeat twice to make 3 layers. Top with remaining tortilla. Cover loosely with foil.

Bake 30 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 5-7 minutes or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup of cilantro. Serve with salsa and jalapenos if desired. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2009 XC

Here it is! The pics I took for my son's XC team.....

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Recipes that work

In my quest for eating all things healthy for Boston I am getting a head start now on finding healthy recipes. I will be posting the recipes that I have found that actually taste GOOD. I will also being posted good finds from the supermarket. A couple new recipes we tried this week are Asparagus soup and Mexican Pizza. (Don't let the names fool you!) Check these recipes and products:


Smart Balance butter spray: Zero calories! We have been using this a lot. It's especially good on the Fit and Active popcorn that we buy at Aldiz. 60 calories for a normal sized popcorn bag!

Wish-Bone Salad Spritzers: 1 calorie per spray. I never realized just how heavy some salad dressing is. I used this on a salad we made for dinner one night, and I felt so light afterwards. It was amazing! I would spruce up your salads with some extra spices if possible. The best flavor we have tried is Balsamic Breeze. No sprucing required for that one!



This one scared me at first, it was my hubby's choice. I thought for sure I would hate it, but it was great! And at only 170 calories for a cup, who can beat it?


  • Smart balance zero calorie butter spray, or any cooking spray

  • 1/2 cup chopped onion (1 medium)

  • 1/2 cup chopped celery

  • 2 tablespoons flour

  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth

  • 2 15 oz cans of asparagus

  • 1 cup half and half

  • Salt

  • Pepper

  • Red pepper flakes

In a 3 quart saucepan, spray cooking spray to coat. Add onion and celery, cook 4-5 minutes until vegetables are crisp-tender. Stir in flour. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in broth. Cook 5-7 minutes stirring constantly, until heated through.

Remove from heat. Stir in asparagus. In blender, blend asparagus mixture until smooth. Transfer back to pot. Stir in half and half, cook 5-8 minutes stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened and thoroughly heated. Add salt, pepper, and hot pepper flakes to taste.


This pizza was very good the day we made it, but leftovers the next day were nasty. Be sure only to make what you will eat that day! 341 calories per slice, and it's very filling.


  • Boboli wheat crust

  • 1 cup low fat refried beans

  • 1 1/2 cups salsa

  • 1 cup black beans

  • 8 oz low fat Mexican cheese blend

  • Canned jalapeno peppers

Preheat oven to 425. In a small bowl, stir together the refried beans and salsa. Spread the mixture over the pizza crust. Scatter black beans over top. Top with cheese and jalapenos. Bake 12-18 minutes until bubbly and golden brown.


Friday, November 20, 2009

Heikki Lunta's Arctic BLAST!

Created by Daniel Bellinger, this is going to be one awesome event! He has been working hard on this! Come and bring your family - have a blast!!!!

Saturday, January 30, 2010
10:00am - 4:00pm
Kendall Hills, Cuyahoga Valley National Park


According to local legend, in the winter of 1970, no snow fell on that part of Upper Michigan known as the Copper Country. As the time for the big winter parties approached, it looked as if there would be no parties. (No snow, no party). Finally, someone remembered that there was a crazy old Finnish woodsman living in the swamps near Atlantic Mine, Michigan, who knew an ancient snow dance. Townspeople found Heikki Lunta ( Finnish for Hank Snow), and persuaded him to do his dance. He did, and it snowed non-stop for a month, so much that the parties had to be cancelled for too much snow. In honor of Heikki Lunta, and in the spirit of the northern community winter parties, Western Reserve Trail Running is throwing a PARTY FOR ALL PEOPLE who volunteered in any race in northern Ohio this year. ANYONE WHO RAN in those races, and anyone who might volunteer to help in a future race, AND THEIR FAMILIES, are also welcome. Cuyahoga Valley National Park has given us use of Kendall Hills, the park's best winter sports area, for this family-friendly event.Bring your whole clan any time between 10 am and 4 pm on Saturday, January 30, for sledding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, a variety of fun races, snowboarding demos, boot-throwing, a costume contest, children's games, LIVE MUSIC, DANCING, hot chocolate, chili, and other food and drinks. Local running clubs will offer information on upcoming races and events, and give party goers a chance to meet members of clubs they might wish to join.This is a FREE FAMILY EVENT. Your hostess is Laurie Colon of Northeast Running Club, assisted by Mark Shelton, Joe Jurczyk, and Daniel Bellinger of the Burning River 100 group, Micky Rzymyk of North Coast Multisports, and members of local running clubs.

Event page:

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

And then there were three!

It's almost been a month now, and my husband is still running! Big kudos to him (and Adidas!). During Bills' Bad Ass 50k my husband and son ran on the Perkins trail for a short time. My son ran 5 miles, and my husband a whopping 9 MILES! He is completely hooked on trail running. His knee, which has been problematic in the past, hurt somewhat after his 9 miler. The next day he woke up and there was no pain, however. He has made the decision to run the Cleveland 1/2 marathon this year! WOOT WOOT! My men are simply surprising me these days :) My husband gets it now. The other day he came home from work saying how he thought about running all day. Wha?? I'm so proud of him, because he has quite a story to tell! It's very inspirational, but I am sorry - it is quite personal and is his to tell if he chooses to do so. I am just extremely proud of him and hope his knee holds out.

The healthy eating has begun! I am doing exactly the opposite of what I did after the YUTC. I have learned from my mistakes, for once. We have eaten 2 veggie dinners this week. I was worried about both, but they were very tasty. Sounded nasty, but tasted great! I'll post the recipes up here sometime this week. This week is an off week for me - I am giving my body a rest so I can start out training for Boston nice and fresh. It sucks, but I do know I need it. I did do some biking the past two days. Not a lot, a couple miles on some trails while my husband and son ran - but I guess it's something. I am getting a bit jealous of my boys though! Sunday can't come soon enough!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Bills' Bad Ass 50k FA report

It was not a typical November day in Northeast Ohio. The sun was shining, and the temps were warm. An unbelievably warm, beautiful day in November. Perfect weather! I thought for sure it would be snowing or rainy and gloomy for this "race". This was my first FA, and many lessons were learned during this one. This reminds that yes, I am still a newbie, and will probably be a newbie for a long time to come!

Early a.m.

I woke up around 4 a.m., showered, and could barely stomach eating breakfast. "DAMN!" I thought. I feel like crap. Usually I have 2 packets of oatmeal, piled high with fruit before a big distance race. I could barely eat one. I almost got sick afterwards. I'm not quite sure why I felt crappy, nor did I care. I was just completely bummed.

Could it be?

Mistake #1: The night before I took a hot bath. Hot baths are one of my downfalls. Knowing that they are pretty much no good at all - I still do it. I never ever ever take one the night before a big event. Until Friday. Blech.

Mistake #2: Spaghetti. Well, the spaghetti was not a mistake. But my homemade HABENERO spaghetti sauce was. Not too bright eating that the night before. Yeah uh huh. Sheesh!

Mistake #3: Well, I've said this before, I've gained 10 lbs since YUTC by not eating right. Still running, but eating some bad, bad stuff. This was the major factor in my crappy performance at Bills' Bad Ass.

Besides all that, hey it was a great event! I officially met some of my facebook friends, and met some new friends as well! Ultra runners are the most amazing people ever! Such an experienced group was at Bills', and I was in awe of pretty much everyone! Once again my son's old Y running coaches were there, Chris and Crystal Basich. Chris ran the 50k and Crystal ran with their dog for a bit. (Leadville runner from previous blog) It's always good to see them!

The course:
The course consisted of 6 loops along the Perkins trail in the CVNP. Some nice hills, but the baddest hill of all was at the end, a steep climb (up and down) that felt 10 times steeper after 30 miles of running!

The start:

Was just a simple, "Ok go"! Nothing big, no gun going off, no siren - just "GO"! Awesome. Brian Musick was there, and Chris, Brian, and I ran for a short time. Yeah until I thought I was some kind of Bad Ass and ran ahead. Ummmm no!!!!!!!

Throughout the race:

Next I saw Tanya Cady from the NERC running the opposite direction. I was a little puzzled, and asked her if I was going the wrong way. She said no - but I'm still confused!!! Soon after I wound up running for awhile with Melissa, who has done the Burning River 100 miler and is hoping to get into the Western States run. We talked about running (of course), family, and how women view themselves. It's amazing how much we put ourselves down and how we look at ourselves sometimes! Good discussions! I also ran for awhile with Mike Keller, a facebook friend who I had not yet met. We talked a bit, and it was good to finally meet him. I'm sure there will be many more races to come!

Again Chris B. and I were running together, and I told him I pretty much wanted to puke. We were running with a couple of other people, whose names escape me, but they were great! One of them was a former skydiver who knew Dan Mathie (previous blog) and we discussed skydiving for a bit. Chris ran ahead, but before he did he said there would be some electrolyete capulets waiting for me when I got back to the covered bridge area. I never heard of these, but he said they would help. I forget what loop this was, but sure enough when we got to the parking lot my son and Crystal were there with the electrolyete caps . I took two right away. The nausea would come in waves after that. Sometimes it seemed to be improving, and then - no. It went on and on like that for awhile. I then saw Shannon, an awesome runner who gave me pretty good advice. She explained I really did need to take more. And I needed something, anything - Gatorade more E caps, something! After returning to the parking lot for the last 5 + miles I took 2 more E caps. Soon I felt alot better - better than what I did for the previous 25 miles. Seriously, and the run was almost over? UGH! I am so grateful for everyone who gave me advice though, I will take this with me to my next races/runs, of course! I am wondering though, will I always feel like a newbie? Will there always be new things to learn? There probably will be. Each new run brings new challenges and new ways of learning and dealing with them. I apologize if I'm leaving people out, I spoke with so many great people it's hard to keep track!

The end:
The end was marked by a run up a HUGE hill to get a Dum Dum sucker, and run back down. Feeling a bit better, I was pumped more now (or maybe it was because I knew that this was the end!) This hill was wild! It felt good to reach into that container and get my "trophy" though! I got a cream soda Dum Dum, and it was the best damn sucker I have ever eaten! When I got back to the parking lot/van I marked my final time and got my shirt. Yes a shirt for an FA! It is now my favorite shirt, it has an awesome design and there were women's and men's styles, which was great. Very nice. Even though my time was not that great due to many mistakes, in the end I did have a really good time, and am glad I stuck it out for the whole thing. Thank you Chef Bill and Bill Wagner for putting on a great FA! Maybe next year we will luck out and get some more mud and some snow in the mix. Now THAT would be Bad Ass!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Headed to Boston? Info you can use!

On my recent search for things to do with the family while in town for the Boston Marathon I stumbled upon the GoCard. This thing seems like it has every family activity you can think of on here! 70 activities for one price, it seems so easy! We bought ours and it has already shipped. A free Boston travel guide comes with, and a few extras. Purchasing the GoCard gets you into these attractions (keep in mind some of them are closed in April - mostly the water related ones):

Bay State Cruise Company-Provincetown Ferry
Beantown Trolley Tour: City Place
Beantown Trolley Tour: Prudential
Boston Childrens Museum
Boston Duck Tours
Boston Harbor Cruises 45-Minute Constitution Cruise
Boston Movie Mile Walking Tour
Buckman Tavern
Cape Cod Canal Cruise
Cape Cod Central Railroad
Cape Cod Maritime Museum
Cape Cod Museum of Art
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History
Cape Cod Rail Trail Bike and Kayak Rental
Charles Riverboat Cruise
Concord Museum
Discover Plymouths History - A Walking Tour
Fenway Park Tour
Foxwoods Casino Tour
Franklin Park Zoo
Gibson House
Gray Line Tour - Cape Cod
Gray Line Tour - Fall Foliage
Gray Line Tour - New England Seacoast
Hancock Clarke House
Harvard Museum of Natural History
Heritage Museums & Gardens
Hy-Line Marthas Vineyard Ferry
Hy-Line Nantucket Ferry
Hyannisport Harbor Cruise
Ice Skating on Boston Common Frog Pond
Institute of Contemporary Art
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
Islander Touring Train
Jenney Grist Mill
John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum
Liberty Fleet Tall Ship Adventures
Liberty Ride
Louisa May Alcott Orchard House
MIT Museum
Mass Bay Lines Whale Watch
Munroe Tavern
Museum of Fine Arts
Museum of Science
Nantucket Historical Association Whaling Museum
New England Aquarium
Newport Cruise Company
Newport Mansions of the Preservation Society
Newport Vineyards
Old North Church
Old South Meeting House
Old Sturbridge Village
Otis House Museum
Paul Revere House
Peabody Essex Museum
Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology
Plimoth Plantation & Mayflower II
Salem Heritage Walk
Salem Witch Museum
Samuel Adams Brewery Tour
Sandwich Glass Museum
Seaport Express Water Ferry
Six Flags New England & Hurricane Harbor
TOMB Presented By 5WITS
The Freedom Trail Foundation Walking Tour
The House of the Seven Gables
The International Tennis Hall of Fame Museum
The Mary Baker Eddy Library/Mapparium
The Nichols House Museum
The Old Manse
The Old State House Museum
The Swan Boats of Boston
The USS Constitution Museum
Theater-on-Wheels Movie Tour
Wrentham Village Premium Outlets Tour

Here's the GoCard link for purchase and further review:

Monday, November 9, 2009

The upcoming Bills' Bad Ass 50k and a family of runners!

Bills' Bad Ass
Well the end is near. Bills' Bad Ass will be held this Saturday. A Bad Ass Fat Ass as the are calling it, more appropriately for me since the eating has not gone well and I've gained a few. I'm not feeling terribly confident about this one as far as time goes, since I have not been eating properly. Each week I have put off healthy eating until the next - until OOPS! 50k time! Aw well, it should be fun anyway. As for the food, we have bought a veggie steamer and used it for the first time today. All junk food is now out of the house, and we have been easing into healthier eating slowly but surely. By Dec 14th it will be 100% HEALTHY for a long long time (at least until Boston!) Christmas will be difficult, but it is absolutely possible. Especially since I will not be having Christmas dinner this year. The hubby and I both decided that we were going to take a break from that. I don't know what we'll do, probably go to the parents house in Ytown, but who knows. New Year's won't be as hard - so I'm not really concerned about that. Anyway, back to the running:

One final long run
Saturday was my last "long" run. Only 12 miles, but it was a good one! Ultra runner Joel was on the trails (the toilet paper vs. paper towel advice giver from the beginning of my YUTC training). He was accompanied by his daughter (who runs marathons & Ultras with him) and his dogs (one of which ran 3 hours with him last week!). They are going to be running the JFK. It's always good to see him, he's so inspiring! Ranger Andy was there (as always) leading one of his many hikes. The next time we go on a hike with him, I'll be asking him how crazy everyone thinks I am! :)

A family of runners!
That's what they called us as we ran by. It brought a smile to my face! My husband, son, and I were trail running together on Sunday! Yeah that's right!!!! My husband started running last week, and is loving it! He's tried before but has had a great deal of difficulty due to a knee issue. He's been wanting to get into it really bad lately though, and we went shoe shopping. I helped him pick out his shoes (I was almost too late!) While he was in the shoe department at Dick's, I walked around looking for my hydration pack. When I returned to the shoe department (thank god the person that was helping him was extremely slow) he had a heavy, clunky, unsupportive Nike running shoe in hand. I snatched that thing up so fast and told him NO WAY! The shoe was horrible. As far as I'm concerned, Nike is just a way to look cool as far as running shoes go. I quickly grabbed a pair of Adidas and had him try them on. He loved them instantly, and we left with his much better pair of Adidas. I'm so proud of him, he's been running 2 miles a day. He called me this morning at work and told me all he wants to do is run, run, run. He's got the bug! He went trail running this a.m.! I can't believe it! Can this be? My son running, my husband running, and both of them loving it? HAPPINESS!

Monday, November 2, 2009

25 mile long run and Autumn Leaves race report

Sunday my son and I ran the Autumn Leaves 5 mile run. This was a big deal for him, as it was his first 5 mile race! As promised I ran with him the entire length of the race and it was a blast! It was a little hard waking up early the day after Halloween, but we did it. I tried to convince him to eat some oatmeal and fruit for breakfast, but he wanted a Power bar instead.

We arrived at the Farmpark around 8:15. When we arrived Jeanette Spada soon introduced herself, a cool chick who is training for her first half! Hopefully we'll run more races with her! Mark Anson then came up, hydration pack in tow. He let me test it out during the race, since I was questioning whether or not I would like one. (I have been procrastinating on this issue for quite some time now). Mark uses a 2 liter REI hydration pack, and it was AWESOME! I couldn't believe it! I went out that day and bought one for myself. While it wasn't an REI (I didn't want to wait for an online order to be shipped, my patience got to me) it works well. It's a Camelbak 1.5 liter for women. I still like Mark's pack better, but this one is pretty good, too. I thought for sure I would hate the pack, water sloshing around, etc., etc. but this was not the case. Thanks Mark!

At the starting line:

We took our place and listened to the instructions. (Ready, set, horn blows). Radames was ready! All of a sudden, there goes the horn! "Hey, I didn't hear them say ready set" My son said. Truth is, I didn't hear it either, but I just told him "Well I guess we're ready now!" And we were off.

On the course:

When we reached the first mile my son was pretty surprised, saying he thought we had been running only a couple of minutes. I told him that was great, and how good he was doing. It was probably because of all the talking! I swear he talked more during the race than he did all week long at home. He had volunteered at the Farmpark's Haunted Hayrides the entire month of October, and took pleasure in pointing out many things. "This is where this happened, this is where I did this, this is where I met, etc., etc."

The most fun part of the race, in my opinion, was running through part of the corn maze. It was slippery, muddy and exciting! My son liked seeing Michael Myers on the course. Before we knew it the race was over and he completed his first "official" 5 mile run! He ran it in 54 minutes and 53 seconds. I'm so proud! He proudly sported his Autumn Leaves race shirt all day.

Today - My 25 mile long run:

A new trail system and my first hydration pack. Both were awesome. There were so many trails to choose from, it was like a great big playground to me! I am seriously kicking myself for not getting here sooner. My hydration pack did me well, and other than my water it had enough space for my keys, cell, power bar, and energy shot ( tried AMP for the first time today). Since I had so far to run I did not worry about how long the trails were and did lots of exploring. I enjoyed so many trails, each with their own unique personality. It soon became my favorite running spot. At the halfway point I stopped at a waterfall for a quick munch on my Power Bar. An older man came up behind me and said "So you're a runner, huh?" We talked for awhile, and truthfully I could have stayed all day and listened to his stories. He used to be a runner - but ran into knee issues and had to stop. He ran 7 marathons, qualified for Boston but never went and was even training for the Olympics at one point! During training, duty called. World War II. All these stories, but the story that gave him the biggest smile and heartiest laugh was the story of how he ran a marathon with his son. With a grin on his face he said he had beat his son by a whole 25 minutes! It's unfortunate that this man had knee problems - you could tell he really loved to run. Kudos to him for still getting to the park though! I had a smile on my face for the rest of my run, thinking how lucky I was to have heard his great stories.