On February 27th, Kevin and I packed up the car to head down to the coast for my first marathon. I took all my own nutrition – from baked kale to recovery protein and quadruple checked to make sure I had the right shoes and running clothes before ditching town. We spent the night on the coast, relaxing and waiting in anticipation for the morning’s race. Kevin had been such a trooper throughout it all – the partners are the real backbone for a lot of people who are into endurance sports. On the morning of the marathon, I woke up early to pack in nutrition before the race. I had been visualizing this race for months – 16 weeks of training and I couldn’t believe how quick the race had come. There were so many weekends where I laid up on the couch after long runs nursing sore feet and slowly sipping down nutrients. Other times, I found myself bouncing right back, but it depended on what I put in my body the night and morning before.
Long solo training hours are the most therapeutic. They’re the times that I learned to fear and crave. Out on the road, I was there with all my aspirations and uncertainties. It’s the place where the world is quiet enough to listen to the ego-driven “I’s” that I’ve been carrying around and gives me a chance to set them down. 16 weeks can change a person. Before the race began, my finger hovered over my watch and I looked up to see Kevin’s smiling face on the sideline. It was 47° in February people – this was meant to be a good race! Hyannis Marathon is a beautiful course – sweeping along the ocean where the sands are so white that it looks otherworldly – celestial. The first half marathon, runners were tucked in behind one another to avoid the 15mph winds, but on the second loop less runners were around and we were all there to face mother nature solo.
I met a few amazing runners while out on the course – chatted with them about where they came from and how fast they were trying to run for the day. We were all there to cheer one another on. The last 6 miles were the toughest – I had to dig deep down to find those reserves of mental and physical strength that got me through long hours on the road. The cheering from people who had gone to see their loved ones kept me going and as I round the last corner, I knew I would make it in time. The final 100 meters was in front of the hotel, so people were lined up cheering on the runners, as I crossed the finished line, I knew I made a Boston Qualifying time for 2017 and Kevin was there – waiting with a huge smile and my water bottle. The combination of exhaustion and happiness is beyond explanation. I just remember thinking – “We did it!” After all, I couldn’t have done it without all the love and support from friends and family.
As I’ve been recovering over the last few weeks, my need for calories has gone way down. I find myself craving meals that are lighter in the grain department. And let’s be honest, I’ve been in need of some new bakeware around here. When Revol reached out to me about including these porcelain belle cuisine individual baking dishes into a recipe, I couldn’t resist. Depending on your appetite, and the meal you’re preparing, they’re perfect size for 1-3 people. At 8 grams of protein per cup of quinoa, this recipe is a nice jumpstart to your morning or a nice recovery breakfast after a long run.
Serves: 2-3 | Prep Time: 12 min. | Bake Time: 45 min.
- 1 cup tricolor quinoa
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 tbs hemp hearts
- 1 tbs chia seeds
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1″ ginger, minced
- 1/2 cup strawberries, sliced
- 2 medjool dates, chopped
- 2 dried turkish apricots, sliced
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- In a medium bowl, mix together vanilla extract, ginger, and almond milk.
- In a small covered baking dish pour 1 cup quinoa and vanilla extract ginger, and almond milk mixture.
- Cover and bake for 45 min., or until quinoa is soft and fluffy.
- Remove from oven and let cool for 10 min.
- Top with strawberries, medjool dates, turkish apricots, and extra hemp hearts.
*This is a sponsored post by Revol.