Kastor’s Kooking

After reading Deena Kastor‘s recent book, Let Your Mind Run, I was intrigued by how important cooking and food was to her.
See the source image
So I googled and accumulated the list of recipes below:

Balsamic-Marinated Chicken – https://www.runnersworld.com/nutrition-weight-loss/a20790839/deena-kastors-balsamic-vinegar-recipes/

Kale Sweet Potato Salad – https://www.runnersworld.com/nutrition-weight-loss/a20815714/from-the-kastor-kitchen-kale-sweet-potato-salad/

Energy Bars – https://running.pocketoutdoormedia.com/kastors-kitchen-energy-bars_15148

Eggs Italia – http://www.espn.com/espnw/athletes-life/article/14098712/runner-deena-kastor-easy-eggs-italia

Grilled Vegetable Polenta Casserole – https://www.prevention.com/food-nutrition/healthy-eating/a20500442/healthy-recipes-from-the-runners-world-cookbook/

Sausage and Cannellini Beans – https://www.motivrunning.com/nutrition-for-runners/eat-like-pro-sausage-white-beans/#

Roasted Fig Salad – https://running.pocketoutdoormedia.com/kastors-kitchen-roasted-fig-salad_17812

Fig and Onion PizzaCarmelized Onion and Fig Pizza – https://chefd.com/products/caramelized-onion-and-fig-pizza

Avocado Enchilada – https://www.fitnessmagazine.com/recipe/vegetables/deena-kastors-avocado-enchiladas

Homemade Granola – https://running.pocketoutdoormedia.com/kastors-kitchen-homemade-granola_32776

Spring Frittata – https://running.pocketoutdoormedia.com/kastors-kitchen-spring-frittata_15144

See the source imagePesto Pasta – https://www.active.com/nutrition/articles/the-healthy-dish-pesto-pasta

Grilled Peaches – https://running.pocketoutdoormedia.com/kastors-kitchen-grilled-peaches_15350

Beach Nuts

Best-Ever Guacamole

Stuffed Dates


Sunrise Juice

The Green V


Green Chile Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Lasagna

Cornbread Stuffed Portabellas


And yes, in one of the articles, Deena mentioned that she is writing a cookbook.

Personally, I don’t cook often or make complicated recipes.  I try to eat healthy but don’t always.

I should runfess that I haven’t made anything from Shalane’s cookbook yet and I’ve had it for quite a while.

But I am tempted to make the two recipes that I added pics of.  Pasta and pizza – two of my favorite carbs!!!

As you know, the Tuesdays on the Run link up has been retired. There is now a new link-up organized by Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner). The new link up is called Tuesday Topics and start today!!

Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these ladies.

I’m linking also up with Coaches Corner–Debbie, Susie, Lora, and Rachel!

and Wild Workout Wednesday with Nicole, Annmarie, Jen, and Michelle.

Happy Running! Do you cook healthy? Have you made any of her recipes? Would you buy her cookbook?


Weekly Wrap for 1.14.19-1.20.19 – Baby, it’s cold outside


Friday Five – Publix Florida Half Marathon

It’s Friday so I’m linking up with  Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five linkup! Join in! Don’t forget to link back to your hostess and visit some other bloggers.

I have my first half marathon of 2019 in THREE weeks – the Publix Florida Half Marathon.  Though I have run 8 halfs in Florida, this is the first time for this particular race.

So my Topic this week is: Five Things I’d Love to Happen During This RACE

1.Good Weather

Not too hot and not too cold. No wind or rain.  It’s in Florida so I’m not sure what I can do about the humidity.

don’t let the pic fool you…I FROZE during this one.

2. No pain.

No foot pain or lower back pain. Or any new aches or injuries.

ouch on new lower back pain during RnR Brooklyn

3. Ocean Views

Sometimes, they say there will be water views but you can never see the ocean or it is for such a short period of time. This is the main reason why I love Florida races.

it does look like I’ll see the water

4.Age Group Award

At my age, this is always a possibility and welcome reward.

won last year at Brew2Brew Half

5. Finish under 2:15.

Not expecting a PR (under 2:06:52) since I did not train for one. I’d like a respectable finish time although with crossing big TWO bridges, this may be a dream.

Happy Running!  Do you have any goals for your first BIG race or any race in 2019? Please share.


Winter Series #3 (3M) Race Recap

As I have mentioned before, the Hudson Mohawk Runners Club sponsors FREE races throughout the winter for its members. The course is pretty boring but free is free.

This weekend, they offered distances of 3M, 10K and 25K.  I am in throes of half marathon training so instead of racing the 10k (as I usually do), I ran long the day before and chose the 3 mile race distance instead.

Last year, this race was not held (due to the re-scheduled Jan 1 race) but I ran this race in 2017, 2015 & 2013.

Choosing the shorter distance this year gives me the opportunity to compare my time to other Winter Series races of this distance. The 3 Mile course is offered frequently. (3 out the 5 races.)

But as you know, even running the same distance on the same course is not the same – different weather conditions and feeling different physically.

So running 10 miles the day before this race would most likely impact how fast my legs were wiling to go.  And having a half marathon in four weeks also would make me hesitate to go all out for fear of injury.

That being said, my goal was a decent recovery run with running friends and no aches and pains afterward.

Then unexpectedly (even though he was very old), my cat died the night before.  I was very very upset and really didn’t feel like racing but I knew it could only make me feel better.

I got lucky with the weather for the second day in a row. It was COLD (teens but single digits with the wind chill) but sunny. As usual on this campus, it was windier than anywhere else..

I left early to get parking since these races are often crowded and there could be other events going on at UAlbany. But there didn’t seen to be as many runners as in previous weeks. Maybe the freezing temperature scared people away.

What I love about this local race is that you get to see a lot of people that you know.

I immediately bumped into many familiar faces and even some runners that I haven’t seen in awhile.

I wound up talking to Judy and Karen and we stayed indoors until the last minute and then made our way outside. However they were running the 10K and they lined up in a different location.

Sole Sister Heidi arrived and we started the 3 miler together.

As I’ve mentioned in my previous race post, the Winter Series races are very informal – no bibs, no starting mat, no timing chips, etc. So I try to start not too far from the front.

As usual, when you start up front, you immediately get passed by by it seems everyone.  These races attract all the speedy local runners too.

I just told myself that this was simply a fun run and just take it at your own pace. Having not warmed up, my legs felt like lead and I couldn’t get moving.

It was so cold that it was also hard to breathe…at least for the first few miles (and then of course, it was over.)

I looked down at my Garmin and it said LOW BATTERY.  In the stress of my cat’s death, I forgot to charge it.

I don’t care about pace but since the miles aren’t marked, I sometimes like to see where I am in the race.

Then I looked down and my shoe was untied.  UGH! I thought of stopping but it was too cold and a pain to have to take my gloves off so I just ran gingerly making sure not to trip and fall.

The course is very boring (zero scenery besides office buildings and highway) but it also has inclines. Nothing steep, just enough to keep it interesting.  I wanted to be better about hills and not walk up them. And I didn’t walk at all.

Runners kept speeding by me…but they were actually those running the 25k!!!

I saw Alyssa ahead of me the whole race. I was surprised since I had thought that she was running the 10k.  She acted like my pacer.

pic from the previous 3 miler

Eventually I did see the finish line and saw a time for the first time in the race.  It said 27:xx.  I sped up and managed to crossed around 27:24.   There’s no timing chip.  You honestly write down your time on a piece of paper and hand it in.

I was 30 out of 80. This is a fast group, as usual.

I chatted with others at the finish line while waiting for Heidi to cross.

If it were warmer, I would have waited to cheer on Karen and Judy. But I was cold so Heidi and I  went inside to warm up and have some chili (red pepper & quinoa), bread, cookies, fruit, hot chocolate. Not a bad spread for a free race.

They gave awards for the top 2 in each 10 year age group.  I was 3rd this week.

Race Splits:

mile 1 – 9:17 (crawling – 8:50 last time)
mile 1.8 – 9:18 (still a crawl)
mile 1.8-3 – ??? – (must have sped up)

WS Series #1 – 28:08
2017-18 WS Series – 26:49, 27:02

So it wasn’t a 3 mile PR or course PR (but not a PW either).

I was happy with the results and that I decided to run this race.

I get one more try at this distance in two weeks!!

Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these ladies.

I’m linking also up with Coaches Corner–Debbie, Susie, Lora, and Rachel!

and Wild Workout Wednesday with Nicole, Annmarie, Jen, and Michelle.

Happy Running! How you are enduring the winter? Did you run this weekend?


1.7.19-1.13.19 – Four weeks to go…


Friday Five – What’s Ahead For 2019?

It’s Friday so I’m also linking up with Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five linkup! Join in! Don’t forget to link back to your hostess and visit some other bloggers.

My Topic this week is: Looking Ahead to 2019

So last week, I assessed my running in 2018 in hopes of planning out 2019.

This was my 2018 Assessment:


Healthy Miles, Quality and Successful Racing, Consistency


Goals, Strength Training, Speed, Leaving my Comfort Zone

Well, change is not easy.

Here’s what I have planned:

1. Run 1000 miles.

It’s just a number.  But that number means two things to me.  I have been running consistently all year and that I have not been injured.
See the source image

2. Take some yoga classes.

I’m not good at yoga. I have zero flexibility. But it is relaxing and my life is not. So I think it will help me both mentally and physically.


3. Do some strength or cross training.

I hope to play more tennis starting in June but I do have access to a local free gym. I’d like to get there on some of my rest days.
4. Train seriously for One Race.

Not sure which one but I have already registered for five half marathons so maybe the local one. Or maybe a 5k.

See the source image

5. And finally…. Finish a 26.2 mile race.

Yes, you heard that right. I haven’t registered yet (next week) but it seems crazy not to take advantage of qualifying for this year’s NYC Marathon.

See the source image

I hope that I can convince some local runners to help me train and some other runners (yes, you bloggers) to meet me in NYC on Nov. 3).

I have also considered registering and then deferring until 2020.

set goals to achieve what's possible

So there you have it. My plans for 2019 are written.  Now I have to execute them.  Stay tuned for periodic progress reports.

Happy Running!  Any goals or plans for 2019? Please share.

Bill Hogan Winter Series #2 Race Recap


January 1, 2019 Noon

Every year, the Hudson Mohawk Road Runners Club puts on the Winter Series, a series of free races for its members ($5 for non-members). On New Year’s Day, starting at noon, they offer the Hangover Half or 3.5 mile Bill Hogan Run as Winter Series #2.

In 2015, I ran the Hangover Half (as a training run.)


and it was a very cold one

Then in 2016, 2017 and 2018, I wasn’t that crazy and I only ran the 3.5 Miler.

It was definitely more enjoyable so I decided to run the 3.5 miler again. They call it a 3.5 miler but I realize each year after the race that it is actually 3.75 miles.

Starting at noon meant that I was able to enjoy my New Year’s Eve.

it wasn’t a late night since the entertainment was so bad…

I arrived at UAlbany early figuring that there are a lot of local runners who do these races and I wanted to get a close parking space.

The weather was so much better than last year (even the re-scheduled race date was freezing). Today it was forecast to be in the high 40s but I worried about the wind on this course. It is always windy!

I took a big risk and wore a skirt. The good thing was that there is an indoor place to hang out before and after the race.

with Judy, Sherry, Judy and Barbara – some of the Sole Sisters

This race brings out everyone I know who runs – from running groups, races, friends, etc.

So it was great seeing everyone and catching up. I immediately bumped into runners that I know from races and lots of Sole Sisters. We hung out inside and chatted until the very last moment when we had to go outside.

I was hesitant about what to wear.  I was afraid that my cap would blow off with the 40 mph wind gusts or that I would be cold without a jacket (which I brought). In the end, I went with my gut and I was perfectly dressed.

Eventually we did have to leave the nice warm building and climb down the stairs and head to the start.

I just squeezed in near the front in order to keep warm and be shielded from the wind.

I told myself to have a “relaxing” race and not try anything stupid and get hurt.


This course is not flat. There are annoying hills throughout. Nothing awful until you are tired (at mile 3).

pic from last year…no snow this year but no blue skies either

This was the first year that I can remember that there was NO ice or snow.

I won’t lie. I was a little cold especially with the wind but at times, I was warm and unzipped my vest. I even eventually took off my gloves. I was happy with my clothing choice.

There were about 230 runners running the 3.5 miler (and 225 in the half). I was never running alone. I ran with someone I knew several times when they caught up to me but soon they left me behind.

I wasn’t bothered at all by my apparent lack of speed. I was just trying to get a run in. I wanted to run the race without walking too since I rarely do that during my weekday training runs. And I did for the first two miles. In fact, I was feeling pretty good.

There were no mile markers on the course but I could hear my Garmin beep. I couldn’t pay attention to my pace or time because my Garmin was under my long sleeves. (Probably a good thing.)

another pic from a previous year

As I mentioned, I was feeling pretty good until mile 3.  This was the most boring part of the course as well as uphill.  To make matters worse, the wind was incredible here.  There were times that I felt like I was not even moving forward.  I struggled and the wind seem to suck the life out of my legs.  Runners were passing me by, even a runner pushing a child in a stroller.  I finally gave it and walked.  But it was just as hard to walk into the wind and so I started running again. At this point, I just wanted to finish.

Finally, it was over and I was surprised to see that the clock read 33:XX minutes. I knew that it would not be a course PR but I actually thought that I was even slower than that.

So I sprinted and crossed at 34:14 (according to my Garmin) and 34:15 on their clock.

I was content!!

Soon after, Karen and Alyssa finished. We chatted and then Barbara and Judy came in.

We waited for Judy and then went inside. Somehow we missed Sherry.

These free races are not chip-timed. They handed you a piece of paper and then you recorded your time.

Mile splits:

mile 1: 8:50
mile 2: 9:01
mile 3: 9:27
.75 – 9:23

Good old positive splits. Nothing has changed for 2019. LOL

Again this year, the course was long!! I was surprised that in these windy conditions I was faster than last year (35:45) and not far behind my course PR from the year before (34:04). Nevertheless, I was happy with how I ran the race. I never felt really tired or that I was pushing hard. I think if it weren’t for the wind, I could have run the whole thing and had an even better finish time.

Definitely not disappointed to not have chosen to run 13.1 miles in this weather.

For a free race, they have decent refreshments – vegetable soup, bread, fruit, cookies, hot cocoa.

And I had all of the above and many pieces of cranberry bread.

I waited around for awhile and chatted with other runners and for Barbara’s niece to finish the half marathon.

They give 10 year AG awards to the top 2 in each group. Two years ago, I won 2nd place and a free loaf of bread. Not so this year. I was 5th.

So a race and a perfect way to start off 2019!

Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these ladies.

I’m linking also up with Coaches Corner–Debbie, Susie, Lora, and Rachel!

and Wild Workout Wednesday with Nicole, Annmarie, Jen, and Michelle.

Happy Running! Did you race on New Year’s Eve or Day? If not, when is your first race of 2019?