about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

    Contact Emily

    For general inquires, contact: EmilyBMalone@gmail.com.

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    Looking forward to chatting with you!

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    What’s Cooking?

    Personal Bests

    5K - 23:28

    10K - 52:35

    15K - 1:38:14

    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

    Marathon - 3:50:58

    A Look Back.



Brooks Trailhead 15K 2016 Race Recap.

Well hello there!  I had planned to do a whole post on fitness and running and how I felt about my training going into this past weekend’s 15K race last week, and then my week imploded.  My babysitter was off last week, and it’s humbling to realize just how little I was able to get done outside of the norm without some outside help.  So I apologize for the radio silence on my end!

And so I will quickly sum up my training before jumping into the race recap itself!  I’ve been training for this 15k for the past few months, and my plan this time around was to run three days a week as well as cross-train.  Even though I probably started officially training later than I should have, I feel good about being really consistent and motivated in my workouts.

I ran two weekday mornings a week, and every Saturday morning, and did almost every single run with my buddy Lacey.  It is so motivating to have a training partner and someone who is waiting for you at 6am!  Our runs were slow (almost all hovering around a 10:00 minute/mile average) and hard, but consistent.  One thing I’ve learned after running for many years is that it never gets easier!

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In addition, I feel like I’ve found my groove with cross-training and strength workouts.  I bumped my ClassPass membership back to the 5 class for $50/month option – I feel like I’m done hopping around to studios all over town and am consistently doing the ones I like best.  I’ve been rotating through pilates at Inspire, boot camp at Sync Fitness, and core cardio and sculpt classes at CorePower Yoga (I have a separate punch card for this).  It has been a nice mix!

Going into this weekend, my longest run was seven very ugly miles, so that was not exactly confidence-boosting.  For whatever reason, running has just felt HARD recently.  I feel heavy and sluggish, and even short 3-4 mile runs take a lot of mental push to get through.  I’ve also had a nagging hamstring that’s felt achy and sore after most of my runs, although nothing so severe that I felt like I needed to stop running.  So needless to say, I was a bit nervous going into Sunday morning.

I never sleep well the night before a race, and Saturday night was no exception.  The boys were both up and in and out of our room all night (whyyyyyy), and I felt paranoid about oversleeping and just tossed and turned a lot.  And of course, with little ones there are a lot of logistics to manage on race day to make sure everyone is where they are supposed to be.

Casey sets up for the Fremont Sunday Market (with our kombucha business) early on Sunday mornings, which meant we were in a bind with the kiddos.  My amazing friend Nicki volunteered to take them at the crack of dawn, so in addition to getting myself fueled, dressed, and organized for the race, I had both kids ready and out the door at 6:30am so I could drop them off and get myself to the start on time.  (Screenshot from my takeover of the Brooks Running Snapchat account on Sunday – so fun!)

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Once the kids had been dropped off, I headed to my friend Lacey’s house so we could carpool to the start.  This is my fourth (!) time doing this race, and this year they decided to reverse the direction of the course.  I wasn’t sure how I felt about that, but always exciting to try something different, right?

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Even though we all gathered in Gasworks Park as always, the start was actually a ways down Northlake, which I thought was odd.  They had everyone walk about five minutes down the road together, and I kept thinking the whole time that I’d much rather be running  that stretch of downhill, and then doing less out and back down the canal later in the course.  But nobody asked me.  :)

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Our plan – as it always has been – was to stick together as long as we could, but there were no expectations to wait for each other or try to keep up either.  And even though we talk through all our training runs, we went for headphones and playlists from the beginning. 

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It was a perfect, cool 52 degrees outside with plenty of clouds blocking the sun.  I remember being so hot last year!  I felt anxious but excited.  I didn’t know if it would be ugly or not, but I knew I’d get through the nine miles one way or another. 

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The new course direction was a breath of fresh air, but you could tell it was the first time logistically.  They didn’t have a big enough section of the road blocked off to traffic, which meant that runners were really packed in, and the first mile was super congested and slow.  I knew I’d likely be slow at the end of the race, so it felt frustrating to be forced to run slow at the beginning.  Looking back at the splits after the race, the first mile was our slowest of the whole race!

I run around Lake Union for a lot of my training long runs, so I expected the course to follow the same path I always take – the nice steady road that borders the lake (Eastlake).  Instead of the very gradual descent down the eastside of the lake that I expected, we wound back behind the street onto a gravel alley that was truly a roller-coaster of steep hills winding up and down.  I just kept looking at Lacey and mouthing, “WHY?”  I have no idea why they forced all of these hills for no reason – we went up and down and up and down and back again, until it leveled out at the bottom. 

I was mostly annoyed by this because I knew that once we got to the bottom of the lake, it would be a steady incline from there, so that wonderful downhill start I’d looked forward to didn’t really happen.  Regardless, I kept my pace around 9:15-9:25 for each mile, and while it felt a bit faster than I probably should have been running, I still felt pretty strong. 

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By mile five my hamstring was achy and I fantasized about turning off at the 10K split, although I knew I wouldn’t actually do it.  Somewhere right around then, we got to a GU station, and I stopped to walk and eat while Lacey kept on running.  I knew I wouldn’t catch up with her again at that point!  For some reason I can’t eat and run – I feel like I’m choking!  I kept on running and continued to replay Beyoncé and JT when I needed some extra pep in my step. 

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I run the lake a lot, so I was super familiar with where we were running.  I typically hate the out and back down the canal, and while I didn’t mind running the lake in the reverse direction, I was not pumped to have the out and back at the end now instead of the beginning.  My hamstring was on FIRE, and I felt like I was grimacing with every step.  I watched the 10K runners head back toward the finish as I peeled off in the other direction to head out on the canal.

From there I kept a decent running pace, but I also walked and stretched a bit.  My leg was really sore.  Of course in hindsight I wish I’d pushed it a bit more there at the end, but at the time I felt like I gave it all I had.  As I came up onto the Fremont Bridge, a familiar black truck drove by and I saw Casey and the boys cruise past toward the finish area – talk about motivating!

I held on for the final mile, and just as I came around the corner toward the park I saw two little boys jumping up and down, and their amazing daddy who had rushed to the farmers market, set up our booth, rushed back to pick up the boys at our friend’s house, and made it to the park in time. 

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As I got toward the kids they both ran toward me and I reached for their hands.  Every painful step before that felt so worth it in that moment.  I asked them if they wanted to run with me, and Cullen shied back but Graham didn’t hesitate for a minute.  He grabbed my hand and kicked it into gear.

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Obviously he’s only two years old, but I am not kidding you when I say that this kid was running ALL OUT.  I was shocked by how hard and how fast his little legs were moving.  I was on cloud nine.

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He charged through the finish line by my side, and my heart just spilled over with pride and love.  This is what it’s all about.  I can’t wait to see our finisher photo!

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My official chip time was 1:31:56, about a minute and a half slower than last year – which is crazy because I felt a lot slower and less prepared this year.  This makes me think perhaps I’m in better running shape than I had realized going into it!

I found Lacey who had finished just in front of me, and gave her a huge hug and high five for an amazing race of her own.  I hadn’t even planned to sign up for the race this year, and I fully blamed credited her for getting me to that starting line. 

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Obviously I’m still on my runner’s high, but I can’t say enough about how much her friendship means to me.  She was the very first person I met in Seattle five long years ago.  We’ve seen each other through extreme lows and amazing highs, and we’ve formed such an amazing bond through many very early morning miles.  Here’s hoping for many more!

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My sweet kiddos were so proud of me and were very excited about my race medal.  Cullen was convinced I had won the race!  The last five years of running have been a big rollercoaster through having kids, recovering, and being pregnant – and I feel so lucky to always have these smiling faces waiting for me whenever I eventually cross the finish line. 

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The kids were all geared up and ready for the real event of the morning – the 1K Kids Dash!  This was Cullen’s third time doing a kids’ race, but Graham’s first!  I wasn’t sure how it was going to go, so Lacey and I both ran with them since I expected they would not want to stick together (or run alone). 

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Cullen is the most competitive kid on earth, and he was hell-bent on beating Graham (which was going to happen anyway!).  He literally spent half the race turned around making sure he was ahead of us.  Any tips for managing the highly competitive child??  He and Lacey took off as soon as the starting sign was lifted.  On a hilarious note, he asked me later in the day – “Mom, do you and Lacey hold hands when you run like Lacey and I do?”  Kids are amazing. 

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Graham and I trotted along, but I think he might have worn himself out running with me the first time (and I know I had!). 

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We made our way around the loop in the park while volunteers and spectators cheered and the kids all beamed with pride.  I look at Cullen and I can’t believe what a little kid he has become.  He is so amazing, and my heart just swells with pride when I see him working hard and being brave. 

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Charging through the finish to earn a medal of his own!

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And Graham and I were close behind.  My legs were so tired at this point!

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Proud little runners showing off their bling.  Such a great family morning, and so many wonderful memories made. 

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Crazy to think that just two years ago, this is what our post-race picture looked like. 

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And now here I am in the very same spot (and same pants!) with two big kids who are running races of their own. 

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This was the only race on my calendar so far, as I wasn’t sure how I was feeling about distance running this year.  I had planned to see how the 15k went and then maybe focus on getting faster through some shorter races this summer. 

Although now I’m sitting here Monday morning with my finger hovering on the “register” button for the Rock N Roll Seattle Half Marathon here in just a few weeks.  I haven’t fully committed yet, but I’m leaning toward just going for it.  It would be my fourth time running it, and I feel sad thinking about missing out on a race that I love (but also hate).  I need to decide really soon either way!

Such a fun race weekend, and I’m looking forward to seeing what other races and runs this summer might bring.  Happy Monday!



Easing Back In With Blue Apron.

This post is sponsored by Blue Apron.  Thanks for your continued support of Daily Garnish!

Last week was our first week back from our Florida vacation, and it was perfect timing for a Blue Apron box!  I wasn’t quite ready to dive back into massive meal prep or creative cooking, so I was happy to let someone else do the leg work for me.

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Blue Apron and I go way back – we’ve been using it for almost two years now!  We tend to get a box once each month when we have a busy week ahead or just need to mix things up.  I love that there is no commitment, and that every week is different!

If you are new to Blue Apron – or maybe just haven’t used it for a while – here are a few new features that I feel are worth highlighting:

  • Blue Apron helps you learn to make new recipes and cuisines, and teaches new cooking techniques along the way! It a great, healthy alternative to takeout or highly processed prepared foods.
  • Blue Apron is working to develop a sustainable food system and use high quality ingredients. You can check out their mission page here!
  • Blue Apron now offers a recycling program!  You can learn more about how to recycle your packaging here.
  • There’s no commitment – you can skip weeks (or months!) or cancel the service at any time!

If you are new to Blue Apron and want to try it yourself – the first 25 readers will get two free meals in their first box when you click here!

Just as I did last time, I ate all three meals myself this week.  Casey has been eating a lower carb diet recently, and he’s also been working some off-hours, so it was easier for me to just eat and prep the meals myself!

The first dish I made from last week’s box was the Spicy Peanut Noodles with Snow Peas, Pea Tips & Garlic Peanuts.  I always pick what sounds tastiest to make first, and I am such a sucker for anything with peanut sauce.  This one did not disappoint!

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I jumped into cooking as soon as I got home from a Pilates class, and I was starving from minute one.  Prep was pretty simple and easy, and required very few dishes – my kind of meal.

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I loved that they used this Wild Friends peanut butter in the sauce.  I remember seeing them on Shark Tank forever ago!  I love that Blue Apron uses a lot of smaller companies and food retailers to partner with, instead of just the big names.

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I have had black rice pasta before, but never angel hair – so I was really excited to try this.  Even though I planned to eat half that night and half the next day, I went ahead and just cooked it all at once.

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Once I was finished cooking, I plated it into two dishes – one for dinner, and one for tomorrow’s lunch.  It looked incredible, and I was tempted to eat both right then and there.

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I am obsessed with snap peas, so this was right up my alley.  I take a bag of snack peas in my purse a few mornings each week and snack out of it all day long.  Along with the peanuts, they added the perfect crunch on top of the creamy peanut-y pasta.  Delish!

I stuck the other bowl straight into the fridge and covered it until the next day.

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And then I enjoyed my pasta dinner on the couch watching Survivor with Casey.  Wild and crazy!

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Even though it doesn’t feel as exciting to essentially cook for leftovers the next day, it is SUPER exciting each time I come home and remember that I have a ready-to-go delicious meal waiting in the fridge for me for lunch.  I reheated the whole dish in the microwave, and it was just as tasty the next day.

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Served along side some green tea kombucha, while plugging away at work and my always-looming inbox.

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My second Blue Apron meal of the week was the Vadouvan Chickpea Burgers.  We make a lot of homemade veggie burgers at our house, so I was interested to see what would make these different!

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Almost immediately, I messed up the instructions.  I was supposed to add the curry spice blend to the onions and garlic I was sautéing, and accidentally added it to the yogurt sauce instead – OOPS!

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I scooped as much out as I could, but I figured it would be okay to have a spicier dipping sauce – too late to fix it!  The patties were formed from a mixture of cooked onions and garlic, smashed chickpeas, chickpea flour, and parmesan cheese.  I was really surprised at how well it came together without any egg or added oils.

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I ended up deciding to scrap the buns since I felt like there were enough carbs offered between the bean burgers and the side of roasted sweet potatoes.  I never like when bread overwhelms a sandwich!

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I plated up serving number one into a Pyrex and stored it in the refrigerator for the next day.

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And the rest was left for me for dinner!  The roasted sweet potatoes and chickpeas were perfectly cooked and lightly seasoned with a curry sprinkle – so good!

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And I was really, really impressed with how well the burger held together.  With so few ingredients, and all things we tend to have on hand anyway, I’ll definitely be making these again soon.

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The next day it was lunch al fresco – delicious leftovers to help me refuel after a busy morning out with the kids.

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Our weather has been amazing these last few weeks, and we’ve been eating outside for almost every meal.  It was heaven, and this totally hit the spot.

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The third and final meal of the Blue Apron box was the Zucchini & Parmesan Quiches with Red Leaf Lettuce Salad!

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I never, ever make quiche because I usually find the crust to be heavy and intimidating, so I wasn’t sure what to expect from this.  I was very pleasantly surprised though, because it was DELICIOUS.

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The crust was very light and not overwhelming at all, and there was a ton of lemon zest in the filling that really brought some complexity to the dish.  I will definitely use lemon in eggs again – such a tasty combo!

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As for the salad on the side, I didn’t feel like keeping a salad overnight since they tend to get wilted and soggy, so I just ate the whole thing for dinner myself.  There is no such thing as too much salad, right?

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Eaten outside as the sun set over our twinkly patio.  Can you tell how much I love summer time?

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To reheat the extra quiche the next day, I just popped it back into the oven for about 10 minutes on 350 degrees.  It felt so fancy to be eating quiche at lunch time on a weekday!

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It tasted just as fresh as it had the night before.  Using the oven is such a great way to reheat things without losing the original texture of the dish.

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Since I’d eaten the whole salad the night before, I made myself a new one the next day out of simple spring mix, balsamic, and blue cheese crumbles (current obsession).

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It was another delicious week, and a great way to east back into cooking after coming home from our vacation.  This week we finally dusted off our grill, and we’re ready for outdoor cooking season!

Here’s a sweet deal if you are new to Blue Apron and want to try it yourself – the first 25 readers will get two free meals in their first box!  Many thanks to Blue Apron for a tasty week of dinners and lunches – looking forward to seeing their new summer recipes in the coming months.

This post is sponsored by Blue Apron.  Thanks for your continued support of Daily Garnish!

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