Mastering patience

Thanks again to everyone who’s emailed, texted, posted on social media and otherwise checked in on my recovery since I tore a tendon in late March (in case you missed it and are interested, I break down the not-all-that gory detail of my injury during a 30.5 mile race HERE and a bit on my recovery plan HERE).

I ditched the crutches weeks ago and said goodbye to the ugly boot. The wicked swelling is gone, and I’m not limping. In fact, if you didn’t know something happened, you wouldn’t guess by looking at me.

But this injury was a doozy, and on the advice of my orthopedist and physical therapist, my body isn’t ready to run.  

In my mind, on repeat, I’m giving myself the same advice I give my health coaching clients with big health and fitness goals…

Trust in the process that professionals are guiding you through, and for the love of all things holy, BE PATIENT!

I truly empathize with how frustrated my clients feel when I give them this advice when they’re facing what seems like an insurmountable goal. And I have a BIG goal: To recover from my injury mentally and physically stronger, to have a great fall training season and to run a fall race I can be proud of.

It’s tough to delay that runner’s high I know a short run will bring. It’s been a real adjustment dialing down my diet to accommodate a less active life (oh, how I miss you, pre-run carby breakfasts and giant, fruity, peanut buttery post-run smoothie bowls!).

As much as I’m tempted to get out there for a short run, as tempting as it is to whip up a ginormous starchy, maple-syrupy breakfast on Saturday, I know that those actions keep me further from my BIG goals.  

So I’m resting, walking, and eating a solidly nutritious diet with fewer treats (not NO treats, but fewer). And if I treat my body well now, there are plenty of runs and starchy meals in my future. I’m counting on it!

If you need support in mastering the art of patience and making changes to achieve you health and fitness goals, let’s talk!

Prep this easy meal: Whole grain + edamame salad with dill & mint

I want to eat healthy, but I am busy and don't want to spend my life in the kitchen, so preparing one dish and getting several meals out of it is a huge win. Enter big beautiful whole grain salads, loaded with fresh herbs for big flavor, lots of vegetables and tasty vegetarian protein so they can last for a few days in the fridge! 

The recipe I'm about to share is a big hit among many of my clients (although a caveat: If you dislike dill, don't make this!). It comes together quickly, and is a delicious, complete meal on it's own, or bolstered by additional sources of protein or vegetables. Let me know if you give this one a try...

Quinoa & Edamame Salad

Serves 4 as a main course or more as a side

  • 1 cup dried quinoa or other whole grain (I used 1/2 cup of truRoots Ancient Grain Medley which is a very voluminous mix of quinoa, millet and buckwheat)
  • 12-16 oz package of frozen edamame WITHOUT shells, thawed (either by microwaving or by sitting on the counter for an hour or longer)
  • 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, washed and halved
  • A handful of fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped or torn
  • A big handful of fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 bunch of scallions, greens and whites, chopped
  • 1 large lemon or 2 small, juiced
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Cook the grain according to the package in water or stock, or for SUPER FLAVORFUL GRAINS, toast the grains:  Simply add the grains to a dry pan over med high heat, and gently shake the pan to keep the grains from burning. Keep shaking the pan for 2-3 minutes, and the grains will emit a toasty warm smell when they’re done. The color may be a shade or two darker, but not browned. Then cook the grains according to package.

Toss all ingredients together with cooked grains and let sit minimum 4 hours in the fridge. This salad will become more flavorful as it sits. I'm not sure where I found the original recipe that I adapted into this version, but please pipe in if you recognize it!

Need support in coming up with easy + delicious recipes to support your health and fitness goals? Get in touch!

Update: When shit happens

From running a 50K to running my mouth to my acupuncturist! Heather is checking my pulses before applying needles to chill me out and promote healing.

From running a 50K to running my mouth to my acupuncturist! Heather is checking my pulses before applying needles to chill me out and promote healing.

Thanks to everyone who's been in touch to commiserate since I shared I tore the ever-loving stuff out of a tendon during a 50K race and am sidelined. I've had a few folks tell me that "Everything happens for a reason," but I'm unconvinced the universe is sending me a message by tearing into my connective tissue. I AM a believer, however, in the High Church of Shit Happens (HCSH).

You may think that as a practicing member of HCSH, about 4 weeks out from the day of my injury, I'd be feeling helpless, frustrated and irritable. That would not be wholly untrue (ask the most patient man in the world, aka my husband John).

But I'm trying to compartmentalize those feelings into brief moments. I'm also super motivated to do everything in my power to heal quickly:

I rested, iced, compressed and elevated for DAYS. DAYS!

I made big adjustments to my diet, which supported someone running 40+ miles a week, and now reflects my much less active lifestyle (sigh). 

I wore my giant immobilizing boot for three weeks, stomping around at first, eventually mastering a more graceful hobble. I am now bootless, and if it weren't such an expensive little accessory, I swear I'd hold a party to burn it.  

I visited my physical therapist Brett (BIG plug for Lifestrength PT!) weekly. While acknowledging the seriousness of the injury, Brett has been very encouraging and has not a shade of doubt I'll be running in a manner of weeks.

I made a visit to my acupuncturist Heather (plug for Heather Johnstone Acupuncture--she's great!) to help bring more blood flow to the injured area and to get some stress relief. Because apparently I'm a little on edge. 

And finally, I'm back at the gym trying to catch that runner's high by working on my weak upper body (so weak!) and doing boring core exercises. I'm not catching much of a buzz, but there's some satisfaction in knowing I'm priming my body for the day when I get the go ahead to crank out 5 super slow minutes on a treadmill. And then the next time, another 5 minutes, then a couple miles and a couple more.

So thank you again to everyone who's checked in on me. Shit most definitely happens, and though I can 100% guarantee more will happen in this lifetime, I'm finding some peace of mind in taking action where I can potentially make an impact.

Better, stronger, more badass together

A few of my training pals--Jenny, me, Scott and John--after a particularly tricky trail run that included crawling down the face of a ridiculous hill. Still smiling! 

A few of my training pals--Jenny, me, Scott and John--after a particularly tricky trail run that included crawling down the face of a ridiculous hill. Still smiling! 

Tomorrow I'll wake up early for a carb-filled breakfast, stress over something stupid (TBD--could be over socks or an imagined pain or whether to wear shorts or leggings), hop in the car for a ride to Susquehanna State Park, and line up with the goal of completing the HAT 50K trail run. It's going to be a long day of running with plenty of walking on grueling (hopefully not muddy) hills. I will have lots of company along those trails, but this effort is going to be a long internal conversation between me and me.

However, I most certainly didn't get here alone.

Ask anyone who's attempting to achieve a BIG goal, and you'll find that the most successful have a full team of support behind them. Whether your goal is to complete a race, to achieve in your career, to lose weight or to better your diet, even though much of the work is done solo, support or (lack thereof) from teammates, friends and family can put you over the top (or leave you broken at the bottom). 

I'm so thankful for all the folks I've run with over the last few months, who've provided good company, inspired me, made me laugh, offered me a hand up when I fell (literally, not figuratively--I fall ALL. THE. TIME) and pushed me past my comfort level to be a better version of me.

Thank you to the AMAZING Charm City Run BelAir trail training group, including coach Darren (2nd from the left on the back row), who's "that's what she said" jokes made freezing cold mornings a little funnier.

Charm City Run BelAir trail running group. Yes, I am as cold as I look (3rd from the right), and Mr Live Full (aka my husband John, 2nd from the left) is going to hear about it the whole car ride home.

Charm City Run BelAir trail running group. Yes, I am as cold as I look (3rd from the right), and Mr Live Full (aka my husband John, 2nd from the left) is going to hear about it the whole car ride home.

Thank you to the No Meat Athlete Baltimore running group, who gave me a reason to get my butt out of bed 1-2 Sundays per month to get in that recovery run with good company (and apologies to everyone who's gotten lost running with me in this group!). 

Thanks also go to the free Thursday night running group launching from Charm City Run in Baltimore. Whether I've run with someone or alone, just showing up for these group runs has provided a high level of consistency in my training, and helped me log some speedier miles in lousy weather that will pay off in my training. 

And I would be remiss if I didn't thank my family, friends and even my clients who've checked in on my training and supported me with words of kindness. EXTRA props to Mr. Live Full, who's been training alongside me (though a zillion times faster) and putting up with a crabby and tired version of me during tough weeks. Without all this love and support in my corner, there's no way I cold even consider lining up tomorrow. 

Here's to being better, stronger and more badass together!

Give yourself four weeks!

I'm ready to get to work! Who's in?

I'm ready to get to work! Who's in?

My clients come to me with big health and fitness goals. If all these men and women needed was an explanation of what a healthful diet is, we'd only meet once or twice. I'd explain a healthy diet is about 50% vegetables and fruit (heavy on the veg), about 25% lean protein and about 25% whole grain or starchy vegetable. Then they'd be off on their merry way to go achieve their goals. 

But knowing what to do is the easy part.

Eating a healthful diet and living a healthy lifestyle requires applying knowledge in our messy, emotional, convenience-driven human lives. Lives in which delicious, cheap and easy food is EVERYWHERE; in which our culture and memories are formed by and around food; and in which we receive a constant flow of new and sexy information about food and diets that may or may not be true. 

What if you decided to do an experiment? What if you gave yourself a finite period of time to work with an expert to hone your knowledge and rigorously work on building new healthy habits? And what if you had not only support of an expert, but also the support of a group of peers working toward similar goals?

Eating for Wellness is that experiment. Join me for four weeks beginning the week of 3/20, and let's focus not on what you're supposed to do, but how to build new habits and apply your knowledge in your busy life!

Got questions? Please be in touch!