Without further ado…

March 25, 2010 at 8:22 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments
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*drumroll please* The recipe for Pork a la Sam! 🙂  This is really a basic dish of pork in wine sauce, but it’s Sam’s specialty and he’s always changing it up, so that’s why we call it what we do.  The recipe below is my version.

Pork a la Sam


🙂 One large (or two smaller) butterfly pork chop (or regular pork chop — just pork people, no bone)

🙂 One medium onion, sliced in rings

🙂 Two cloves of garlic, chopped

🙂 Leftover red wine (any will do — merlot, cab, shiraz, etc) the kind you can’t drink anymore because you forgot you had it — approx. 1/2 cup

🙂 Pepper and EVOO

Step one: Go around a pan twice with the EVOO, set on medium heat (don’t go higher — EVOO has a lower smoke point, meaning higher heat will burn that baby up)

Step two: Pepper your pork liberally.  LIBERALLY.

Step three: Add pork to heated pan, pepper side down.  Place onion rings and garlic around pork.  Pepper the other side of the pork.  LIBERALLY.

Step four: When pork is “seared” on one side, flip to sear uncooked side.  Don’t worry about not cooking the pork all the way through, you’ll get to it.  I wouldn’t let you get food poisoning!

Step five:  Add wine to pan.  Cover reduce to medium-low heat.  Allow to cook for about 15 minutes.  Check for doneness.

Step six: Plate and serve!  Drizzle leftover “wine sauce” from pan over top of onions/garlic/pork.  YUUUUUUUM.

If you’re tired of eating chicken while trying to avoid red meat, pork is excellent.  Versatile and delish, give it a try!

Dinner tonight was almost as snazzy: Jalapeno burgers!  We actually call them “japaleno” burgers — it was a verbal gaff of a friend and has stuck ever since.  Soooo good.

Sam had his with a bun, I had mine without but with Pepper Jack cheese.  No, I’m not going all Atkins, it’s just I couldn’t find reasonably priced buns that fit with “If It Doesn’t Have a Mama” March. Bummer.  Sweet potato fries made me smile, though, with organic ketchup.  The veggies (Brussels sprouts and lima beans) on the side kept it real, homies.  Real nutritious ;).

I mentioned in the previous post I was going to talk about some anxiety I’ve been dealing with.  I’m sharing it here because I know several of you are runners and could offer some great insight.

Here goes:

I am having a general freak-out over the fact that as of today, the half marathon is 17 days away.  I only have two more long runs (the longest being 10 miles) and then…it’s go time.

Maybe it’s the fact that this is getting more “real”, maybe it’s the fact that soon, I’m going to have to put my running shoes where my registration money is, but this is really getting to me.  I plod along on this Hal Higdon training schedule (which I picked after some Googling, site browsing and instilling my trust in Hal’s blue eyes) and I never question how it’s all going to work.

I question it now.

I’m only running 10 miles before jumping to 13.1.  What if I can’t?  What if I get to 10 and then my motor shuts down or my shoelaces break or I just stop moving like the Tin Man after a rainy day?

These are the stupid thoughts that creep into my regular runs and I try and fight them off as best I can.  I try visualization tricks — I tell myself: imagine the finish line.  There’s my mom, there’s Sam (because he’ll inevitably finish faster than I will), there are all the people getting their participation medals…you’re coming down the home stretch, you feel great, you have a big smile on your face, you’re ready to own this…

But in the back of my mind, I can’t help but think: what if that doesn’t happen?  What if I have to walk to the finish line in this scenario?  What if I never make it to the finish line — I wander into the woods and they find me later, mumbling my race number over and over again?  What if what if what if?

I was doing okay fighting these “lizard brain” voices, until I woke up this morning with a very sore knee.  I’ve had issues with my IT band before and I took today as a rest day in fear it was acting up.  But it’s more than my knee that’s bothering me — it’s my brain.  I’m still just a newbie at this.

HELP!  How do you handle race anxiety?  Do you even have it?  Is it because this is my first “big” race?


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  1. Just a thought: each weekend you’ve run farther than you ever have before, and on top of that you’ve been successful nine weeks in a row. Why would 13.1m be any different?

  2. What if you *do* have to walk across the finish line? Will it be the end of the world? No! You’ll have finished and you’ll be proud of yourself! You’ve trained very hard and you can do this!

    I just ran my first half 3 weeks ago and it wasn’t what I had expected, but I was very proud of what I did and couldn’t wait to run another! In fact I have another in 2 weeks and can’t wait to improve on my last performance!

    Good Luck!

    • You’re right — it will NOT be the end of the world. I will still finish it.
      Good luck with your next half! I’m impressed you’re doing another so soon :)! I feel like there should be a rule: if you complete two half marathons within a certain time, you can count it as a whole marathon ;).

  3. You will do great. Hal Higdon knows what he is doing when he devised that training plan. Race day is completely different than training– yes indeed — and like Becky up above says, unexpected things happen–that’s life! But i think you will find that the adrenaline and the crowds of people and just the atmosphere of the race will pull you across that finish line and you will do great. Have FUN!!

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