I Survived! (Napa Half)

Hey guys. Guess what? I survived my 5th half marathon!


I was really unsure how it would go given I missed a lot of training runs, and felt terrible last weekend. I got in all the long runs of training, but the volume of the shorter runs wasn’t really there…my only goal was to finish, to take it slow, and to actually enjoy the race. I feel like I end up not enjoying my halfs as much as I should because I take off like a bat out of hell and then am dying the whole way. So let’s back up.

Pre-race day eats. I tried to keep it moderate but didn’t do the best job. Breakfast of the world’s largest blackberries and gluten-free focaccia (which is amazing btw).


Lunch was a salad with sweet potato pop chips and gluten free cookie dough soy ice cream.


I had some other snacks in there too-gluten free banana bread I believe?

We drove up to Napa in the afternoon and were in St. Helena in time for dinner. Somehow I found a place that had a dish that fit my complicated restrictions.


Grilled asparagus and peach salad.


Chicken with potatoes, mushrooms, and arugula.


Woodhouse Chocolate. I decided trace amounts of dairy were fine since I’m feeling way better.

After an evening of working on Stats homework and baseball watching, I was ready to go when I woke up at 5:45! The race started at 8, and we stayed at a hotel a few minutes walk from the start, but I had to time my food in a specific way. I woke up not feeling that great but it passed pretty quickly.

Breakfast was banana, egg white oatmeal with craisins and a dab of sun butter.



Stretching, as per usual. Notice that blue thing I’m holding? I got a flip belt! I wanted to carry crackers during the race, so I shoved those in with a couple of goos and stomach medicine, ┬ájust in case!

And then we were off!


I took it super slow at the start. Slower than I ever have before, and it was awesome. I was really able to enjoy the beautiful views of vineyards along the Silverado trail. Another bonus? No SF hills! Only a few minor ones that I was more than trained for. For the race, they closed off the entire road, but on the way home we drove the race route so here are a few shots of that.

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This tree was the turnaround!

In terms of fueling, I took about 1/3 of my goo at mile 4.5 at an aid station. I accidentally grabbed gatorade instead of water, but I just went with it. It took a little while for that to settle in my stomach, so I did goo #2 a little differently. I started eating it super slowly at mile 8 (and got a much needed burst of energy!) and didn’t finish it until mile 12. I had to be super cautious that my stomach never got too empty because I knew I’d have stomach issues if that happened.

In terms of how I felt, the hardest miles were maybe 9-10? They were pretty flat, which was just a lot of the same motion. I actually felt better once we hit the hills! Overall though, this is by far the least painful race I’ve run. Around the last 4ish miles I started to think about finishing time and what I wanted, since I knew if I was feeling ok I could probably turn it up at the end. I ended up with some killer negative splits! My last mile was by far the fastest.


I think my official time was 2:15?


This is by far the least painful finish of a half I’ve had. So…that pacing thing? Yeah-something to work on!

After the race I had to refuel thoroughly and carefully. Such a big calorie deficit made me really nervous with my stomach. I had some crackers and a banana right away, and then a Luna bar. Back in the hotel, I had the freaking weirdest thing ever. Coconut oil cream cheese (weird) on a gluten free bagel with….a frozen hard boiled egg. Yuck. Got the job done though….but ew. The frozen egg was the weirdest thing.

Later, I had some polenta.


And I’ve basically been eating everything since then. So we’ll see how I feel tomorrow…


This cookie though…it’s basically free of everything-refined sugar, gluten, dairy, eggs. But SUPER delicious. My post-race hunger laughed at the “serves 2″ on the label.

So. In summary. I survived my half and am in one piece. Yay!

Over the Hump on Hump Day

I finally have some positive news to share! I think my new medicine is working because I am FINALLY feeling much better! After still feeling bad Monday, I was really concerned about teaching spin on Tuesday. It was my first day of the class that is now my very own (aka I teach every week now!). My entire day was scheduled around trying to feel good. I went to AM Crossfit because strangely enough that settles my stomach…

We did 2 rounds, with a 5 minute rest in between, of:

250m row

15 kb swings (heavier than normal)

25 burpees

15 kb swings

250m row

I refueled from that with hard boiled eggs and mango. I felt good all morning, but the thing about my mystery illness is it can go from 0 to 60 pretty fast. I was wrapped up working on a homework problem, and suddenly I realized I was shaking and needed food IMMEDIATELY. So basically I always keep snacks on me now. The good news is I think I found a fairly safe lunch:


Butter lettuce (less intense than romaine)+grilled chicken a la Trader Joe’s+ vinaigrette+ a fruit bar with chia and flax seeds. And sometimes with some edamame crackers.

I left for spin pretty early to beat traffic and did some work in the car. After 1.5 luna bars, I was fueled up and ready to teach. I’m not kidding when I say Luna bars make up a significant part of my diet right now. Like 2 a day. But hey, if my body cooperates and they don’t fit my 5000 food restrictions, I’ll go for it!

Spin went really well! It was a small class, but a fun one. I took it a little easy on the bike, but for the most part my body cooperated and I was so, so grateful.

I really wanted sushi, so I popped in at Trader Joe’s for some quinoa and mushroom teriyaki sushi. It had a tiny bit of wheat, but technically I should be adding things back in slowly so I went for it.


At Trader Joe’s one of the only desserts I could find that fit my current eating style was brown rice crispy treats. Hey-I’ll take it! Dried persimmons are another favorite-YUM!

I think this illness has really been a wake up call that I need to start taking better care of myself. At this point, I think it’s really likely it was caused by overconsumption of Advil damaging my stomach. Hopefully the medicine continues to help, but in the meantime all I can do is continue to put quality foods in my body and hope it heals! But MAN I feel much better than this past weekend (knock on wood!)


Elimination Diet Eats

It’s been over a week now that I’ve avoided dairy/gluten/all nuts including coconut. So what have I been eating? I’m sort of obsessed with rice cakes, which is really a good thing given I have about 4 things of them right now (oops). Also-mangoes are officially in season! As are blueberries-YAY! So here’s a few snapshots of the past week.


BBQ chicken salad-BBQ chicken from Trader Joe’s, avocado, corn, tomato, tortilla chips, red pepper, and a simple lime/olive oil dressing


Chicken with ketchup, roasted broccoli. Super basic.


Chicken, roasted broccoli, and a sweet potato with non-dairy butter (Earth Balance).


Papaya+ Sunbutter&J rice cake.


Salad, chicken, microwave brown rice and quinoa.


Guacamole salad with chicken.


My pre-long run meal, which has kind of evolved and morphed in the best few years. In theory, it is banana+egg pancakes. But it has to be microwave friendly. And I always used to add cocoa powder but chocolate hasn’t been treating my stomach well (I’m a hot mess clearly). And then I started throwing in oats for more carbs!


First meal back at the dining hall-turkey burger, salad, steamed veggies. This was pretty much the only stuff friendly to my super restrictive diet…




Hummus salad with chicken, plus a fruit bar. I like finishing on something sweet!


Breakfast-an egg+veggies, a pear with sun butter.


I really liked this fruit bar from Trader Joe’s! It was chia and flax seeds for a little texture and staying power!


Hummus salad with egg.


Dining hall meal-roasted cauliflower, quinoa and yams, lentils, and chicken curry over rice.


Easter egg+mango. Classic.



Typical dining hall meal.



More eggs, shockingly. This time in the form of egg salad! FYI-egg salad over plain lettuce is super boring. To create this, I got to be the super cool person who brought back a big bowl of mayo and mustard from the dining hall. Yum?

Any favorite gluten/dairy/nut free foods I should try?


Wow, things have been crazy here lately. I’m in a sorority, and this week is our big formal recruitment!

I think I owe you all some food pictures, especially with my fantastically limited diet. As for how that’s going-I’m not ready to start adding things back yet, and I’m feeling ok. I sometimes feel bad, but it’s pretty good and lately hasn’t been a problem. So I’m feeling PRETTY good.

So-the weekend! I worked on Friday afternoon instead of Saturday because I had a recruitment workshop. I had to pick up my employee key tag from the gym I’m going to start subbing at (which looks exactly like my membership key tag from when I was a member).


And the gym was right across from Whole Foods, so I grabbed dinner there.


Turkey meatloaf, quinoa salads, and normal salad. The real highlight though was raiding the dairy free/gluten free bakery area. I picked up this AMAZING brownie which I think was made with garbanzo beans?


Saturday’s meal schedule was really strange since I had my workshop, but I had a super early dinner of sushi-type of things, which I dipped in vinaigrette. Yeah…


Then, my sister and I got full body massages! I had never had one before, and it was so nice! Although the next day I felt a little bruised. Afterwards, we went out for Pho, because rice noodles are one of the few things I can eat!


Then, I went home for Easter! Yes, we are in our 20s and still do egg hunts.

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Also-know what is gluten and dairy free? Jelly beans. YUM. I had so many! Because Easter is one of the times where candy mid-morning is 100% acceptable.

After the hunt-we ended up not finding anywhere near all of them, although we found one with a giant hole far from where it started so maybe animals played a hand-we met up with my grandma and uncle for brunch at a fancy hotel.

I actually managed pretty well to avoid gluten/dairy/nuts.


I brought my own soy sauce in my purse that was gluten free. Cute. Sushi, smoked salmon, salad, chicken.


Corn taco with beans, guac, rice, and salsa. Plus more sushi and jasmine rice.

I also had some dessert. I had a few bites of gluten/dairy containing things, but I think it was ok, especially since I’m doing a full other week of total elimination. My favorite was peach crisp!

After brunch, we did some egg dying!


Which is what I will be eating for the next week straight. These are all for me:


In other news, I did my last major long run of half training yesterday. It was 9 miles, and it was a mix of great and really, really sucky. Saturday-Monday I was dealing with really bad allergies (that always occur the week of formal recruitment), so my lungs felt disgusting. My stomach was kind of off so I felt gross. And my new shoes are definitely not ready to be raced in. HOWEVER. My legs felt fantastic! They weren’t even tired, so I’m taking that as a good sign! That being said, I still have no expectations for race day. It will definitely depend on how I feel!

What did you do for Easter?

WIAW- Elimination Diet

Happy Wednesday! I’m not technically linking up to WIAW because it got kind of complicated, and I honestly don’t know where I’m supposed to link up, but why not have a full day of food anyways?

Now that I’m on an elimination diet, things are a bit different around here. It may be a prolonged elimination diet because I don’t particularly want to add something back in that I suspect will make me sick right before my race, so we shall see.

So-what have I been eating? A lot of rice cakes. Somehow I never realized how delicious they were?? Also a lot of weird things because as it turns out, the dining hall isn’t necessarily too weird-restrictive diet friendly. Out of 8 salad dressings, all but ONE had wheat.

Here are Monday’s eats. I am happy to report that today mid-morning was the first time I felt totally normal after my flare up, so I didn’t have to be as careful today about how much I ate without my stomach hating me which is a good place to be! Things were mostly better Monday but a little wonky.




1.5 brown rice cakes with sun butter, plus the world’s largest blueberries and a few pieces of dried persimmon.




Tupperware meal! Chicken, green beans, and mashed sweet potatoes, made with Earth Balance instead of butter.

Snack #1:

Dried persimmon+1 gluten free jo-jo.



Snack #2:


I’m so glad these are gluten free because I love these things!


This is the part where I’m glad snack #2 included protein, because every-freaking-thing has wheat in it in the dining hall!


Salad with grilled zucchini, mushrooms, and balsamic vinaigrette+garlic swiss chard+quinoa with sundried tomatoes and yams.

This is where I’m a weirdo and made an interesting dessert concoction. One of the special desserts that night was chocolate coconut rice pudding, which was almost ok for me to eat, but I’m cutting out coconut because it’s a tree nut :( So i mixed together some brown rice, chocolate soy milk, raisins, and sun butter.


Totally normal.

On the running front, I got my 12 miler in on Sunday! I was really worried about how it would go-I was basically sick all week, and I was worried the run itself would send me into a tailspin because my 11 mile run sort of started my last flare up. I made the decision to slow it WAY down and not let my heart rate get too high. I walked some hills, and I took some nice salty crackers to calm my stomach and give me some electrolytes (it was pretty warm!). It worked like a charm! I felt like I had a long run hangover after my 11 miler, and felt much better (but of course tired) after 12. I wasn’t worried about pace because I had shown myself during the 11 that I was capable of a faster pace, and I just wanted to get the miles in. I ran on one of my favorite trails, and actually reached the end for the first time! Unfortunately, the last mile that I had never run before was, as I suspected, straight uphill. My achilles tendons were so sore the next day. WHEW.

Have you ever been on a specific diet for anything? Any tips?