Running Reflections

The first week of August is an exciting one. Not because of the Cardamone wedding, but because I started my first week of half marathon training!

halftraining.png

(Actually, can any of my running friends look at this and make sure I’m not fucking myself over toward the end? Thanks!)

Incase you forgot, I’m hoping to run the Santa Barbara Half Marathon in November and actually had to change the long runs from Sundays to Wednesdays due to my school schedule. I’ve spent the last few months doing light runs here and there. Unfortunately, my base training plan had many holes due to work scheduling and vacations where running outside wasn’t possible.

Since today is Friday and I haven’t posted a Friday Five in over a month, I wanted to tell you:

Five Things I Have Learned As A New Runner

I don’t have a million pictures of myself running (which would be kind of weird) so instead, you’re in for a Google Images treat.

1. Hydration is really important

Everyone says this, but I really noticed the difference in my speed and endurance depending how hydrated I was the day before and during my run. No, I don’t drink as slickly as Senator Rubio above, but I do try to keep a bottle around me at all times.

2. Working out isn’t an excuse to buy Lululemon

Every time I hit a PR (which comes really easy when you’re only running three miles), I convince myself that I earned something from Lululemon. Bribing myself is not the most financially responsible thing I have done, although I must admit…my butt has never looked better in workout pants.

3. It’s all in the head. Well, sort of…

Running is definitely more of a mental dilemma than a physical one after a certain point. I find myself doing really well until my mind starts to wander, How long have I been running? Wow, it’s only been 1.5 miles? Is my Garmin working? After my mind shifts from auto focus to actually paying attention to my body moving, it all becomes an awkward game of QWOP.

4. Keep your pace

I always start my running feeling like Usain Bolt and hit my peak pretty early on and slug out the last x amount of miles.

P.S.: I ran my fastest mile today! (7:37) I also wanted to throw up on the side of the road for the first time. Two new records on the same day, yay!

5. Running sucks until you get good at it

MjAxMy00OTdmYTY0M2EzNDA1YzNh.png

After my first few runs, I wondered what kind of crazies there were in the world to actually enjoy putting one’s body through the most unenjoyable task ever. It made me go through a series of denial and distrusting other people’s recommendations for anything. I woke up one day feeling a little crazy myself. I actually wanted to put my shoes on and go on a run, and so this madness begun.

Last week’s Friday Five: Five Ways to Prepare and Eat Mangos

I feel bad for not showing you any food this whole post, so I will tell you about a dinner date I had yesterday with one of my best friends, V.

Haven’t seen her since I came back from China and missed my lady terribly, so I took a short road trip to Concord, U.S.A. When she got off work, we walked over to their downtown area and caught up on everything that’s been happening between us. Crazy how easy the conversation flows between us, it’s like she knew what was on my mind before I even opened my mouth.

IMG_5480.jpg

We had Indian for dinner, which made me a very happy girl because nobody ever wants to go eat curry with me.

Chicken Vindaloo and Palak Paneer, yum.

IMG_5483.jpg

And my first Fro-yo ever: tart frozen yogurt with almonds, almond roca, cheese cake, graham crackers, strawberries and oreos.

IMG_5485.jpg

Runners, what’s your tip for a newbie? Favorite froyo combos?

The Terracotta Army Visits San Francisco

Two weeks ago, I was driving home and saw the new exhibit in the Asian Art Museum. The Terracotta Warriors were sent to San Francisco for a few months and I was ecstatic to be able to see them again.

The first time I saw them was when I did a China trip with my mom two (or is it three now?) years ago. We started north in Beijing, headed west to Xi’an, back to water in Shanghai and ended our trip south in Guangzhou and Hong Kong. I was able to see the Terracotta Warriors in full prestige in Xi’an, and it was absolutely breathtaking. I don’t know if I will ever go again, so that’s why I knew I had to make a trip to the museum.

I’m taking an online Asian Art History class with my roommate Sarath, so it perfectly linked up to a mandatory museum visit we had to go to. We started our day in the mood for Indian food. I took her to one my dad introduced me to a decade ago, Shalimar. My dad was a total food snob, so I always trusted his judgement regarding restaurants. Although Shalimar only rocks a 3 1/2 stars on Yelp, I don’t blame them because I think it’s hard for hole in the walls to get more than that.

IMG_1371.jpg

Sarath and I decided to do family style, so we can try more things.

IMG_1379.jpg

Our first dish was the Seekh Kabab Mughlai, which is grounded beef with delicious herbs and spices, and then barbecued as a skewer on charcoal. I know it doesn’t look so appetizing, but the taste was really there. Indian food isn’t for everyone, which is why I’m happy Sarath was delighted to go.

IMG_1380.jpg

This curry, the Chicken Tikka Masala, is probably the most popular and well known dish. My favorite part of the meal was dipping my Naan in the sauce.

IMG_1383.jpg

IMG_1386.jpg

IMG_1396.jpg

IMG_1400.jpg

We can ignore how obnoxiously bright my sweater is and talk about the basmati rice, which was described as “cooked in a rich stock of safevory spices and brown onions and made aromatic with a touch of exotic saffron”. My favorite combo was Naan dipped in the Masala sauce, with rice and a little bit of ground beef on top.

IMG_1384.jpg

Mango Lassi is the perfect drink to wash down all the heavy flavors coming from the Indian food.

IMG_1388.jpg

After being extremely satisfied, and only $18 (for both of us!!) later, we headed to the Asian Art museum. We found great parking outside of City Hall.

IMG_1410.jpg

Then walked a block and a half over to the newly placed museum. The AA museum use to live behind my old house in the Golden Gate Park, this is the third time I got to visit since it reopened.

IMG_1420.jpg

The exhibit cost $20 to view the Terracotta Warriors, but you get admission to go to see the rest of the exhibits as well.

IMG_1427.jpg

A replica of some of the figures found inside the caves. This one is housed outside the exhibit, so it isn’t the real deal.

IMG_1433.jpg

Finally in the third room, after seeing ornaments and clay animals, we got to see the beloved warriors. So pristine.

IMG_1439.jpg

Obligatory Buddha head, which I have an infatuation with. This one is from India.

IMG_1464.jpg

Sarath went a little picture happy with my camera.

IMG_1477.jpg

IMG_1479.jpg

And a picture of what I came for, Guan Yin. We had to find something in the museum we wanted to write an essay about, so of course I chose Guan Yin. She and I have a special relationship that I will write about another day.

IMG_1518.jpg

We did so much walking that day, but I’m so happy we got to visit the museum. It’s so hard for me to find people that actually want to go, so thank you Sarath!

Do you enjoy eating Indian food? What’s your favorite kind of art?