Sweet and Hot

by jenna on August 29, 2008

Oh.my.Goodness—-I LOVE working with sugar!!!!!!!!! This is DEFINITELY the coolest thing I have done in culinary school and it’s the last thing I will ever do in school as well (the best for last?!).

Last night in school we started and it is soooo awesome! Yes, you burn your hands off but apparently you have to “get to a point where you can’t feel it anymore” (don’t know if that’s good or bad). We boiled sugar and water together until it reached 320 degrees F, colored it and poured it out on silpat mats and then started picking at it and rolling it around until it was workable. I think I love it so much because I’m alwayssss cold (everyday for the past year I’ve worn long underwear underneath my uniform to school!) and the sugar is so nice and warm and we work under heat lamps to keep it pliable. Here’s Cathy and my pink sugar right after we poured it out on our mat. This was 300 degrees!

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And then you start quickly folding in the edges and picking at it until it cools down a little….and you roll it into a log:

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And then start pulling it!

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You can make CRAZY things with pulled sugar…whole sugar sculptures, animals, flowers…anything! We made this little rose, just playing around:

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It’s funny because its the first time in culinary school where you can’t eat what you make! We use a special type of sugar (isomalt) that has a, ummm, laxative effect when consumed. We use this because it does not crystalize or caramelize and is much easier to work with when hot.

I’m so excited to find something I truly looove doing and so excited to learn more about! Cathy and I are doing a little scene with kittens, a fireplace and yarn for our centerpiece project. I can’t wait to start!

Anyways–-happy Friday, folks!! This morning I woke up and ate half a clif bar for a snack before hitting the road for a run. SO excited to get new shoesies tomorrow!

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I’m following a plan on Runners World for a 6 week advanced 5K before I start half-marathon training and this morning’s workout was time trials. I did four 400M (quarter of a mile) time trials with a 5 minute recovery run in between sets. It was quite hot outside and next time I do this workout, I will be on the treadmill to better moderate my speed and pace. Basically, I ran my usual slow pace (my half-marathon pace) then picked up the speed for the 400M “sprints”, then went back down to a slow run in between. I walked a little bit in between sets because it was soooo hot outside already (and it was only 8:00!). Here were my stats:

Time: 31 minutes

Distance: 3 miles

Calories: 360 (by the time I had gotten back upstairs I had burned 392)

Average Heart Rate: 179

Max Heart Rate: 201

I mapped out what 3 miles really is on mapmyrun.com……and I knew it!!! My crappy old pedometer WAS wrong! It was about a half mile off..so basically, for the past year I have been running further than I thought. I guess that’s a good thing?! I knew my run last weekend was more than 3.2 miles when I burned 450 calories and was gone for 40 minutes. Now I know I did almost 4 miles and didn’t even know it!

When I got back, I made some proteiny oats with granola!

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I used 1/2 cup multigrain cereal cooked in 1 cup water, 1/2 scoop vanilla designer whey protein powder, 1 spoonful almond butter and 1/4th of a granola plank! It was yummy and had a nice crunch from the plan….loooove these things!

Today I’m going to pack for the weekend, clean the apartment and try to get to the library downtown at some point. Now that I have some time on my hands I can finally get back to going to the library regularly and thus saving tons of money at Barnes and Noble!

Running Question: So…I’ve decided that when I run (or walk for that matter) my feet are naturally rolling inwards, putting a ton of stress on my lower leg and shin. After every run I am icing my lower leg, but I really think this is what caused my injury last year. Does anyone else have this problem or am I the only one?! I really really hope it can be solved with new shoes that give me more support and stability…

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Christie I. August 29, 2008 at 1:33 pm

That rose is so pretty! I am so impressed, glad you liked working with the sugar.

Do you wear shoes designed for pronation (the rolling inward)? That might solve your problem, it solved mine.

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Cara August 29, 2008 at 1:36 pm

I am not sure if that is the reason why I am having shin pain or lower leg pain but that may be it. I will pay attention next time and let you know. This has only happened in the last few months, so I have been blaming it on my need for new shoes. But this could be it. Hmm.

I am glad you loved the sugar making. Sounds awesome!

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Kristen August 29, 2008 at 1:36 pm

You are definitely not alone! I had the same problem, I don’t know what kind of sneakers you have now but I bought Asics and ever since I did I havent had the problem really at all as when I was running with Nikes. Good luck!

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Kristin August 29, 2008 at 1:37 pm

Jenna, I used to ALWAYS get shin splints when I ran, and it took me a while to realize it was because I was wearing the wrong shoes. They weren’t giving me the support I needed; they were too stiff to support the natural rolling of my feet, and when I switched to shoes with Gel Insoles; which let my feet move “naturally”, but still gave them support, I was MUCH better off. I’ve been wearing the same shoes; Asics Gel Kayano shoes for 3 years now, getting a new pair of the same kind every time I needed a switch, and they’ve worked wonders for my legs. No more shin splints, and I’ve eventually been able to run longer and faster because of it! Hope this helps. Really, THE SHOE COUNTS!!

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jenna August 29, 2008 at 1:38 pm

Christie,

I just wear Nikes right now but tomorrow I’m going to the cool new running store where they watch you run then give you a shoe that fits your stride. I’ll have to ask about pronation because I think that might be my problem. My ankle tends to roll around way more than it should!

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VeggieGirl August 29, 2008 at 1:42 pm

The contents of the first photograph look like you spilled a Cosmopolitan, haha ;-)

GORGEOUS SUGAR ROSE!!!!!!!

Happy Friday!!! :-)

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ModelBehavior August 29, 2008 at 1:52 pm

They did a food network competition with pulled sugar centerpieces one time…I couldn’t look away, it’s so amazing! Looks like your a natural Jenna!

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Katie S August 29, 2008 at 1:55 pm

Jenna-
I have that problem as well!! I have tremendous pain in my shins after I run and sometimes the next day I’m limping!! Argh! I went to a running store and they helped me pick out new sneakers that would help out… the shoes have made things a little better but I still have pain afterwards!! It definitely keeps me from running longer distances.

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Jayne August 29, 2008 at 2:01 pm

hey jenna,

I have a similar running problem. An easy fix. When you go to get new shoes, just tell them you’re an overpronater (which probably means your feet are mostly flat). I wear custom orthotics… I run marathons, so my feet would kill me if I didn’t :) but if you don’t want to invest in orthotics, make sure to look for a shoe that touts itself as “motion control” or stability. Here’s a list of some good choices. I’ve been wearing brooks adrenalines for about 7 years now, and just continue to buy pair after pair… they’re wonderful, but it all depends on what’s comfy for you.

if you have any other questions, feel free to email! can’t wait to read more about your training!

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Serena August 29, 2008 at 2:02 pm

I used to get shin splints and shoes definitely helped – you might try getting inserts to go in your shoes too. But if you are pretty sure that you have the right support, I’ve been told by doctors that shin splints and stress fractures can also be caused by doing too much hard training too soon. So definitely ease into your training, because the only cure for shin splints is rest and you don’t want to get to a point where you need to rest when you are in the middle of your training or are almost ready for your run! Oh, and stretch your calves and feet!! Good luck!

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Jayne August 29, 2008 at 2:02 pm

“list” is actually a hyperlink, but it didn’t get underlined for some reason… but the link works!

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faith August 29, 2008 at 2:02 pm

wherever you are getting your new shoesies make sure its one of those spiffy running stores that acutally videotapes you running and watches you run before figuring out your shoes. im originally from the NW and we had stores like super jock n jill and the running store or something like that that would do that just as part of their service for free. good luck!

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Amy August 29, 2008 at 2:04 pm

I have the same problem of overpronating when I run. That running store should be able to help you find a good sneaker if you mention that your feet roll inward. I got a lot of pain from it before so I ended up buying special sneakers. Brooks, Saucony, and Asics all make good sneakers for motion stability. Asics have been my favorite of the three.

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Trina August 29, 2008 at 2:07 pm

Jenna, I know that everyone else has commented, but I’ll chime in as well. I have the exact same problem with sneakers. I have very flat feel and I definitely over-pronate. If you go to a good running store, they should be able to help you pick out some good ones, but this is what you need:
-Stability
-Motion Control
-Support
-Cusioning

I have found that Brooks works really well for me, as well as Asics. I also have to switch my shoes out every 6 months (that is running about 20-30 miles a week). So keep that in mind..it sucks b/c it costs a lot of money, but you shouldn’t run more than 400-600 miles in shoes!!

Also, I noticed that you keep talking about “designer whey protein” now. Did you switch from the jay robb kind?? why?

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jenna August 29, 2008 at 2:08 pm

Thanks, guys!!!! I seriously really hope that a shoe can fix my problem..I’m pretty sure that they video tape you when you run around the track in the store then they play it back to you as well. I think I’m going to save my 3 mile run tomorrow until AFTER I get new shoesies.

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jenna August 29, 2008 at 2:09 pm

Trina,

No I didn’t switch…I have both! I just wanted to have both vanilla and chocolate to switch it up! I have chocolate jay robb and vanilla designer whey!

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Trina August 29, 2008 at 2:11 pm

PS. I have one of those Garmin wrist watch thingies. SUPER COOL!! They connect to the GPS satellite and are extremely accurate in telling you how far you go. They also tell you pace, time, etc. You can get some that also have the heart rate monitor included (mine doesn’t…) but they are WORTH every penny. They aren’t all that expensive either. I think you can get them on amazon for just over 100 bucks, depending on which style. I highly recommend them if you are going to be doing the trainign that you plan. Especially because you don’t want to train on a treadmill when you are going to actually be running outside. :)

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Katie S August 29, 2008 at 2:17 pm

hey everyone that mentioned the inserts! is this something you should get from a dr? or can you get them from a store? thanks!!

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Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) August 29, 2008 at 2:20 pm

I love that rose, it’s so pretty!

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Regan August 29, 2008 at 2:22 pm

Jenna, I have the same problem and it may not just be a quick fix as in getting new shoes that fix overpronation. I went to the podiatrist and they gave me Orthotics, which are shoe inserts but they are customized. They make you step in this foam box and they mail off your imprints and make the inserts from those. They cost around $125 but they work like a charm! I did go to a specialty running store and they also gave me a good pair of shoes to work with my overpronation and my inserts. I don’t have anymore pain. I would really look into it. Oh and they last for years.
Hope that helps!

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faith August 29, 2008 at 2:28 pm

i also wanted to add that you have been a really big inspiration to me! i am in recovery from an ed and how you eat is almost exactly like me meal plan. plus, i want to go to culinary school too! i’ve started a blog, though due to life events haven’t quite got the daily routine down. how did you get so diligent?

http://cottchz.wordpress.com/

just wanted to let you know i think you’re great!

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Ally August 29, 2008 at 2:28 pm

Hi Jenna, we have a store around here called Fleet Feet – I think they are a national chain, and you can go to get fitted for running shoes. They video you running on a treadmill and can let you know if you are overpronating or not and fit your shoes according to your natural running style.

I’m sure you have some place similar, so I would just look around for a good running store that might do that. The plus side is you only have to do it once because once you know what kind of shoes work for you, you can just order them online or find them cheaper.

Beautiful rose!! I love the ribbons. Good luck with the running, I love it!!

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BethT August 29, 2008 at 2:32 pm

I agree that Brooks are the. best. for most types of feet. I’m sure the running store will give you a wide selection, but ever since I discovered Brooks (and I’ve tried TONS of brands) my runs have been noticeably improved. I’m on my third pair of Brooks Trance!

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Anne P August 29, 2008 at 2:32 pm

Going to a running store where they watch you run is key for buying new shoes! I bet they will point you to some that will majorly improve your comfort level while running and hopefully stave off you old injury from last time! Good luck :)

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cb August 29, 2008 at 2:43 pm

I agree with Annie P…let them watch you run and fit you in the shoe designed for your running style.

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runjess August 29, 2008 at 3:00 pm

You are overpronating. This can probably be corrected with the right shoes, but you really need to go to a specialty running store where the sales people know what they’re doing. Make sure they watch you run. Bring in your old shoes so that they can see the wear pattern. Since you aren’t doing a lot of mileage yet and this is already a problem, plan on buying semi-expensive shoes. (Cheaper than going to the doc for an injury) My best friend is a manager at a specialty store–let me know if you want me to pass on questions.

Icing is a good habit. Are you stretching?

Increase mileage at a rate of about 10% a week (no more). If you are following a RW plan, this is probably what they are having you do anyway.

Don’t buy shoes just because someone else likes them. Everyone has different needs so it’s important to find the correct shoe yourself.

If this continues to be a problem even after the new shoes, there are corrective exercises that can be done, but don’t worry about those just yet.

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melissa August 29, 2008 at 3:31 pm

Hey jenna, if you go to a good running store they should video you running and analyze your stride and pronantion. I would do this asap so you are running in proper shoes and avoid injury. Having to ice after 30 minutes is not a good sign. But the right shoes make all the difference in the world. You may ask the store clerk about how to conciously correct your form to prevent rolling inward. – run turned out,so I have to actively work to straighten my stride.

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LisaM August 29, 2008 at 3:36 pm

Hi Jenna!
You over-pronate. I got orthotic inserts for my shoes (not special ones, just “basic ones”) froma running store and it helps soo much!
As for shin splints, I find that doing my “A-B-C’S” really helps. Whenever you are just sitting around, “write” the alphabet in the air with the tip of your toes. It helps strengthen the muscle.
Hope that helps!

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grace August 29, 2008 at 3:43 pm

I overpronate as well, but I do not have flat feet. I have high arches. I feel when I get the shoe they recommend I don’t have enough arch support. Does anyone else have this problem? However, the best shoe I’ve found is a Brooks.

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Caroline August 29, 2008 at 3:50 pm

Jenna: I have the exact same problem with overpronation, and — after much trial and error — I have found that Asics are the best for solving this problem. The Kayano’s are on the pricey side, but work fabulously. You may also want to try the Gel Foundation or Gel 2130. Some people have also told me that Saucony and New Balance also have great stability shoes, but I have been sticking with Asics. When I am running, I also try very hard to think about running on my whole foot. That also seems to help. And, like LisaM sais, the ABCs work wonders! Just my 2 cents!

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Christie August 29, 2008 at 3:58 pm

Yes that is def pronation.. there i a store in the international mall in tampa that will video tape you running and than find the sneakers you should be wearing.. I really think your shoes are making it worse… I injured myself badly from nikes because they were not right for my feet( during marathon training) i took 2 weeks off and went to a running store, they recomended saucony and I have been running in them since (3yrs later)

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Nicole August 29, 2008 at 4:13 pm

Sugar looks like so much fun to work with!

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Melissa P. August 29, 2008 at 4:20 pm

I love watching the sugar art challenges on Food Network. They are so stressful/interesting because they break a lot. I do not think that I would be able to do it because I would be a nervous wreck that I would complete this beautiful piece of sugar art only to have it crash to the ground.
You should have your running analyzed at a running store. They will probably give you some inserts for your shoes that force you to redistribute your weight properly. It will probably feel a little uncomfortable at first but will keep you from injury in the long run.
I cannot wait to see the sugar kittens!

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leslie August 29, 2008 at 4:29 pm

Ok, I’m just gonna be the immature one and say it… because I know AT LEAST one other person has thought it….. that sugar “log” looks like a penis…. ok, i feel better now having that off of my chest :-) I hope I’m allowed to say “penis” on here! haha

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Alissa August 29, 2008 at 4:43 pm

Jenna, first time I have commented here. Love your blog. I’m a long time lurker.

Just wanted to say that I have had terrible shin splints in the past and good orthodontics and also being careful to ease into a running plan is the best cure. Remember not to increase your mileage more than 10% per week. If you have a Roadrunner Sports store in your area, I would highly recommends them for shoes. They will put you on a treadmill and tape your feet running barefoot and then slow it down super slow and show you how you run and explain what kind of running shoe you need. Also LisaM’s suggestion about tracing the ABC’s is a good one. The other strengthening exercise you can do is “duck walks”. Walk around the house on your heels in your bare feet for awhile. That will help keep shin splints at bay. Good luck with your training!

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Alissa August 29, 2008 at 4:44 pm

haha, orthodontics. I meant orthotics. Guess its not in the spell checker :)

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Anne P August 29, 2008 at 5:30 pm

hahahhahaha leslie i thought that too!!! nice work.

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Sarah August 29, 2008 at 6:03 pm

You should go to a specialized running shoe store and have them fit you for shoes that will help to reverse the effect of rolling inwards. They watch you walk and they’ll know what type of shoes you should be wearing so you don’t get injured.

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