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New kicks!

Posted Feb 23 2011 12:00am

I love Groupons . Especially when it gets you $50 to spend at your favorite running store! I scored this awesome deal a few months ago, and finally got around to using it. The Groupon was to pay $25 for a $50 coupon to Potomac River Running ; on top of that, I had a $15 credit from Groupon, so I paid only $10!!! SCORE!! The coupon expired on Tuesday, and it just so happened that I was in need of a new pair of sneaks. So, I bought myself a pair of Mizuno Wave Inspires to replace my old ones:

Of course I was excited to try them out but blech! Running on the treadmill is sometimes such a drag! Anyone else feel that way? I mean, c’mon is the end of February; I’ve been doing treadmill workouts for months. I just want it to be warm and sunny and in the 60s so I can run outside and not be bundled up!

But, I wanted to start breaking them in, so I trekked to the gym and did an interval workout. I’ve found that interval workouts are more exciting than running for 45-60 minutes straight, because I manually change the speed throughout my workout. Not only does it make the time go by a lil faster, but it’s an awesome workout, and is one of the ways to improve your running speed! Here’s what I did:

:

0:00-5:00 Walking @ 3.5

5:00-10:00 Jog @ 6.0

10:00-15:00 Run @ 6.5

:

5x

0:00-1:00 @ 6.5

1:00-2:00 @ 8.0

2:00-4:00 @ 6.5

4:00-5:00 @ 8.0

On the 5th round, I pushed myself and alternated between 7.0 and 8.5.

:

5 minutes, slowly decreasing speed until my last minute is a walk @ 3.5

Wave Inspires = awesome.

As I dreamed of warm running weather while running, I was also dreaming of a recipe from the Moosewood Restaurant Cookbook my roommate Carly bought me for my birthday. Though I’ve never been to Moosewood, I’ve heard great things about it. And, after skimming reading this cookbook cover to cover, I definitely want to take a trip up to Ithaca.

I’ve had my eye on this Caribbean Sweet Potato Gratin recipe; I haven’t had potato gratin in AGES! And better yet, this recipe is made with sweet potatoes, which I have a serious weakness for…

The recipe looked pretty simple, and I had all the ingredients on hand. So, I got to cookin’.

First, I combined garlic, lime peel, lime juice, cilantro, thyme, salt, pepper, and coconut milk in a small bowl.

Then, I layered some of the coconut milk mixture, sliced sweet potatoes, quinoa, black beans, and spinach in a 9 x 13 inch baking pan.

There's some sweet potatoes under there!

Repeat the layers again, and then top it with a cornmeal mixture: cornmeal, vegetable oil, thyme, cumin, and salt.

Pop it in the oven at 350° for an hour, rotating the pan after the first 3o minutes.

When it comes out of the oven, let it sit for 2-3 minutes, so the juices are all soaked up.

Dig in!

I love the combination of sweet potatoes with lime, cilantro and cumin. Cumin is seriously one of my favorite spices. Though I typically think of potato gratin as a side, this was definitely hearty enough to be a meal in itself.

I may or may not have helped myself to several servings…

Adding this to my list of recipes to make again!

(Adapted from Moosewood Restaurant New Classics )

1 garlic clove, minced

1.5 teaspoons grated lime peel

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1.5 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

2.5 cups coconut milk

2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced (I made my slices about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick)

1 cup quinoa, cooked  Original recipe called for rice)

1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed

1.5 cups fresh baby spinach (I used half of a bag)

:

3/4 cup cornmeal

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon salt

 

Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly oil a 9 x 13 inch baking pan.

Combine the first 8 ingredients (through the coconut milk).

Pour one third of the liquid into the baking pan.

Layer half of the sweet potatoes, quinoa, black beans, and spinach into the pan.

Pour another one third of the liquid on top, and then repeat the layers of sweet potatoes, quinoa, black beans, and spinach.

Pour the remaining liquid on top of it all.

In a separate bowl, combine all the ingredients for the topping. Sprinkle on top of the gratin.

Bake for 60 minutes, rotating the pan after 30 minutes.

It’s done when the potatoes are tender, and the topping is brown and crisp.

Let sit for a few minutes before digging in!

How do you stay motivated to run on the treadmill?

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