Week 5 – Chai Inspiration

These days I’m not exactly bringing in the big bucks since my working hours are spent raising this baby into a boy.

week 5-1

Time well spent.

Marathon training is a lot like a savings account. With some careful planning, patience and hard work, ideally you’ll eventually garner adequate funds to draw from when the time is right.

This week I felt like I banked some really good, quality miles. Tuesday’s medium-long run went fairly well, although I was still feeling a bit sluggish from my 21 miles just 48 hours prior. All of the easy runs were nice, recovery runs or preparation miles to get me to Sunday’s long run, which, as a 22-miler should be, was brutal. After it I think I stumbled across the lawn and sort of collapsed in our entry way. I remember my husband’s, “Uh oh!?” and soon after he was shoving apple pancakes my way. Apple pancakes are a sure-fire way to improve any situation. I am sure this was the toughest long run I’ve ever done because it incorporated eight quick tempo miles broken up in two chunks early and late in the run. When the going got rough (about 3 miles in) I had to remind myself, “I’m banking miles!” I’ll have those as collateral when I get into the thick of my race in four weeks.

Marathon Training Week 5:

Monday: 9E (two runs: 6am-treadmill / 3pm-jog stroller)
Tuesday: 15 (5E, 5 @ 7min/mile, 5 @ marathon pace 6:45)
Wednesday: 7.5E
Thursday: 13E
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 7.5E with 6 x 400meters @ 5:45pace
Sunday: 22 (2E, 4T (6:20pace), 10E (7:50pace), 4T, 2E)
Total: 74 miles

This week I’ve also had chai on the brain. Making chai from scratch is just way better than those store-bought chai mixes. WAY better. You can rev up the spices and tweak the sweetness to your liking. I have no real hard and fast recipe; I just try to go heavy on ginger which is very anti-inflammatory and thus beneficial to a runner’s recovery. This is generally how I’ve been brewing my chai:

2 c water
2 cinnamon sticks (or 1 t ground)
1 t cardamom (didn’t have any cardamom pods, who does?)
1 inch square chunk of ginger finely sliced
6 whole cloves
6 black peppercorns (not ground)
1/2 t nutmeg
a few fennel seeds

Bring this to a boil. Reduce to simmer. Allow your home to fill with the most heavenly fall smell. Simmer a while. Then add 2 cups of your choice milk: almond, goat, coconut, cow’s… you name it. I typically do equal parts water to milk. Also add two bags of black tea. Continue to simmer for 3-5 minutes. Sweeten with raw sugar, maple syrup, honey or your choice sweetener. Strain and enjoy. Share or if you have extra, it’s nice chilled and poured over ice. It’s best hot and enjoyed in a toasty location.

Drink up!

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