Friday, June 13, 2014

Pre-Training Preparation & a Recipe

Earlier this week, I broke out my colored Sharpies and my marathon training plan and went to work on my calendar.
Week 1 begins July 7!
The plan I'm using is Runner's World's Smart Coach. I really like the program because it allows you to choose your intensity and how many weeks of training you prefer. What I really like is that the plan is flexible.
Each run is hyper-linked to further detail about the workout.
I'm not a naturally organized person; I figured color-coding my planner would help. I'm still a little conflicted on how I want to go about cross-training because speedwork/tempo runs usually leave me feeling a little weak. But right now, my plan looks like this:

Red = speedwork; Fuschia = tempo; Light Blue = easy; Purple = race; Blue = long run; Teal = XT
So I'll definitely cross-train Tuesdays, and I'll leave Thursdays optional depending on how I feel and how long my long-run is that weekend. 

One thing I'm not really sure about is that the plan calls for four 20-milers! Most plans call for two at most. I already know I'll be missing one as I'll be doing an 80-mile relay that weekend, but I don't have any other races set up yet. Maybe all the 20-milers will have me feeling really confident by marathon-day!

So, part of pre-training is cleaning up my eating habits. It's no secret that I'm a fiend for all things sugary. I'm pretty notorious for having dessert with every meal. Over the past few weeks, I've given Matt permission to monitor my snacking. That pretty much boils down to me allowing myself one dessert a day; I make sure to eat it when I'm not alone so I have to be held accountable. It's amazing how quickly I've noticed a difference in my cravings for sugar, my energy level, and the fit of my pants!
Instead of sugary cereal, breakfast is now gluten free oatmeal with a tablespoon of peanut butter. Yum!
Now for a recipe! Elizabeth gave me this one and it was a hit! I changed some things up to have more control over the salt content. It's super easy; all you need is a crock-pot.

-Frozen chicken breast
-1 can of black beans
-1 can of corn
-1 can diced tomatoes
-1 can mild green chiles (or spicy...but Matt isn't a fan of heat so I kept it mild)
-Cilantro to taste
-Salt & pepper to taste
-1-2 cups cream cheese
-Avocado for garnish

Drain all the cans and dump them into your crock-pot.
I didn't drain the beans well enough. Oops
Place the chicken on top, season it with salt & pepper, cover, and cook on high for four hours.
Four hours later, add the cream cheese and cover and cook for another thirty minutes. While that cooks, whip up some brown rice.

Stir the crock pot so the cream cheese is all mixed in and serve it over rice. Top with your avocado. 

The chicken was fork-tender and so flavorful. I seriously can't stomach dry or bland chicken, so I was beyond happy that this turned out so well. Plus, there was plenty leftover for lunch the next day. We'll be having this again for sure.

Do you have a sweet tooth?
How do you prefer to keep track of your training plan? 
Do you ever use a crock-pot?



  1. Your plan looks awesome - as a fellow Sharpie fanatic, I agree with your methods :) The chicken looked super yummy!

    1. I hope the color-coding works for me! haha.

  2. A blank planner and a bunch of colorful sharpies is the best combination!

    I feel like you slipped in that 80 mile relay without giving us any details!!

    1. caught that, huh? I'll update more on that as it gets a little closer!

  3. Looks like you changed your cover photos a the change. I LOVE color gives your training a whole new element. Can't wait to follow you on your training journey!!!

    1. I've never tried color-coding before...I hope it works for me!

  4. I think I have used our crock pot twice in my entire life. I don't know why- there are so many great crock pot meals out there! I like your color coded training plan. I love to get out my calendar and mark it up with my workouts as well. :) Oh, and as you know, I have a TOTAL sweet tooth. I eat dessert most nights, and sometimes during the day I have a hershey kiss or something like that.

    1. I should use the crock-pot more, because it makes life SO easy, but I always forget to buy my ingredients ahead of time! That's why I liked that I could use frozen chicken for this.

  5. We use the crock-pot a couple of times a month, especially in winter. Always looking for good new recipes since we tend to just use the same ones over and over again.

    Very exiting to see your training plans written in!

    1. I need to use my crock-pot more often. I can't even do anything in there that calls for vegetables because for some reason it never cooks them, even when I put them on the bottom. But anything soup-like works well in there, and I want to try some breakfast casseroles and enchilada type recipes!

  6. You are SO organized! I gave up a paper planner years ago and live by my Google Calendar, so I plan out all my workouts on their own calendar there. It's great because lately when I hop on my bike I just pull up my calendar on my phone and check what I should be doing. Good luck on your training. I know for me kicking off a new cycle is so fun!

    1. I am so NOT organized, but I'm hoping to trick myself into being organized haha. Last year I put all my workouts in my online calendar but it became too easy to ignore them! I like the idea that you can reference them easily on the go, though. I may need to program in details for my tempo and speedwork, at least.