How I came back from an Injury Stronger and the recipe I’m loving lately

Being forced to the sideline with an injury is never easy, but when you have your first race “back” after significantly lower mileage and intensity for 4 months, and the race is only 51 seconds off your PR, you share what you did for those 4 months. Because, in the future, friends may find themselves injured, too, and may need some guidance for “what to do”.  Catch my drift? So, save this post for when you’re injured and need a kick in the pants, because let’s be real, finding the motivation to cross-train/stay in shape while on the injured reserve list is just plain HARD.

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Biggest piece of advice:  find a group/workout buddy. This was the inarguably the best thing I could have done. You don’t have to be alone in your injury! You have friends! It just may take some searching 😉 I obviously couldn’t train with my normal running buds during my injury, but I COULD find a local swimming and biking group! Most cities have US masters swim teams and biking clubs with weekly meet-ups. Find a contact on their website (or heck, just show up like I did) and tell them you’re a newbie. They’ll love your tenacity and dedi     
cation to learning something new and being the best you can be at “their” sport.

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My Cross-training schedule during my injury. This doesn’t include strength training/PT appointments (**Also, I was able to run, but not much. I basically ran until it hurt, all the while trying to figure out what ACTUALLY was wrong. This took about 4 months. As you will see, I built up quite the cardio base. It did not hurt at all to bike and swim, so I did those a TON):

MON AM: 1.5 hours of getting my arss handed to me at the pool with the u.s. masters swim group

MON PM: hot yoga or a short/easy run


TUES AM: spin class at the gym

TUES PM: restorative yoga


WED AM: 1.5 hour swim…so freaking hard but love every minute of it

WED PM: 2 hour bike ride with a local club (usually by Wednesday night I can hardly walk after that much swimming and biking in one day)


THUR AM: rest/sleep in (thank the Lord)

THUR PM: light/easy run


FRIDAY AM: another morning, another u.s. masters group swim. 1.5 hours.

FRIDAY PM: kick my feet up and relax! It’s Friday!!


SAT: long-ish run (nice and easy for about 45 min to an hour)


SUN: either rest day or afternoon bike ride

Also, wanted to share something I’m loving lately.


Let’s talk about salads-in-a-jar. Obsessed. I make them all on Sunday and have a bunch in the fridge to grab during busy week days!

Mason-Jar Salad: How To


Makes 2 salads


1 carrot, thinly sliced or shredded

1 cup quinoa, cooked

1 sweet potato, roasted

2 handfuls of the lettuce of your choice

Maple-Tahini Dressing

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp coarse salt

¾ cup tahini paste

2 tablespoon lemon juice

¼ cup warm water

2 tsp chopped parsley


  1. For the dressing, combine all ingredients into food processor and blend until desired consistency. Depending on your preference, you may add more water or lemon juice to thin it out.
  1. Cook the quinoa according to the package instructions. Let cool completely.
  2. Cube the sweet potatoes, toss in olive oil and salt + pepper. Roast the sweet potatoes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes. Let cool completely.
  1. Once ingredients are prepped and cooled, layer the salad in the jar.



Maple-Tahini Dressing


Quinoa and Sweet potato




  1. Store in refrigerator until ready to eat!

Recipe Inspired by


Spring Panzanella Salad with Leeks & Asparagus

This salad is genius. That’s all there is to it. Except, wait. WHAT IS WITH THIS WEATHER?!


You know what I really wish? I really wish the idea for this salad was something I invented myself. But, alas, I’m entering the blog world about 8 years too late. marchpanzanellas_11

This is a “panzanella” salad, which in my eyes, just means a hearty bowl with some good crusty bread. There are lots of great spring panzanella salad recipes out there. (Food and Wine 2012 anyone?!) Save yourself some time like I did and go with this one from Smitten Kitchen. Really, though. Smitten is pretty genius.marchpanzanellas_12

In fact, I recreated her recipe in hopes of changing something drastically so I could call it my own. Just didn’t happen. It’s that good. Only minor changes were needed in my humble opinion (tehe). Really, though. Make this. Pronto.
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Spring Panzanella Salad (adapted from Smitten Kitchen in 2008)
Serves 4
For the croutons:
¼ cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups day-old bread, crust removed and cubed
6 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
For the vinaigrette:
½ of a medium-sized red onion, finely chopped

2 ½ tablespoons champagne or white wine vinegar
Juice of ½ lemon
¼ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
For the salad:
3 large leeks

2 teaspoons salt
1 pound asparagus
1, 15-ounce can of white beans, rinsed and drained
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix the bread cubes with the garlic, olive oil and parmesan in a large bowl.  Toss to coat well.  Transfer bread to a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake stirring once or twice until croutons are crisp and lightly colored on the outside, but still soft within, about 10 to 15 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Mix the red onion with the vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil and Dijon. Whisk well and set aside.

Cut off dark green tops of leeks and trim root ends.  Halve each leek lengthwise to within to inches of root end.  Chop leeks into 1-inch pieces and separate strands.  Rinse well under cold running water to wash away sand.  Cover leeks with water in a large rimmed skilled. Cover, and simmer leeks until tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Without draining the cooking water, transfer leeks to a strainer, and run cold water over to prevent overcooking.  Break off ends of asparagus; chop into 1 inch pieces, and cook in the boiling water until somewhat tender, but not wilting, about 3-5 minutes.  Strain and run cold water over asparagus.

Place leek and asparagus pieces in a large bowl with beans and cooled parmesan croutons.  Pour vinaigrette over and toss well.  Season with salt and pepper.