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Squash And Squishiness

Between my 10K on Saturday and this past Friday, I exercised exactly twice – 30 min. of weights x 2.  I probably should have cross-trained also but I really enjoyed a) feeling like I had a life again and interests outside of exercise 🙂 and b) truly resting my muscles and joints.

However, I was happy to get back out on the road for a run yesterday.  General post-race recovery recommendations are to take one day off hard training for every mile you raced.  Because I haven’t been running that long and tend to be injury-prone, I figured it wouldn’t hurt to be a little more conservative and avoid any sort of running for six days. Yesterday was my first day back.  It was a very slow, somewhat sluggish three miles but I tried to enjoy the fall air and the feeling of my feet on the pavement.  I knew I’d feel a little creaky after so much time off, but my next run should be easier.  Ever since my experience with patellar tendinitis, which lasted a good six months, I am extremely appreciative of every day that I am able to run just for the sake of running.  I do it because I can.

I haven’t been on my bike since my last tri in early October.  Something’s up with the chain and it probably needs a tune-up anyway so I’m going to take it into the shop (free service since I bought my bike there – definitely one of many perks of supporting LBS’s (local bike shops)).  Then I’ll stick it on the trainer and log some miles this winter.

I’ve gained a few pounds over the last week or two.  I am at the max of my comfortable range.  It’s due to a combination of very little exercise  + my unintentionally long tapers + eating as though I were still exercising for an hour almost every day + enjoying treats that I avoided before my races. Oops!  I’m not too worried since my exercise should slowly start to ramp up again soon.

I wish I’d taken a picture of Friday’s dinner!  I made butternut squash risotto, cooked fresh spinach, and london broil.  I overcooked the broil but everything looked pretty 🙂 and the risoto was soo good! It was my first time making it but I think it turned out exactly the way it was supposed to.  It was very creamy and I finally got D to eat “squishy” squash!

Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/butternut-squash-risotto-recipe/index.html

Butternut Squash Risotto

Cook time: 40 min., Level: easy, Yields: 4-6 servings


  • 1 butternut squash (2 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade (I used 3 cups stock and 3 cups water)
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter (I used 3 T butter and 3 scant T EVOO)
  • 2 ounces pancetta, diced (skipped, didn’t have)
  • 1/2 cup minced shallots (2 large)
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice (10 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads (skipped, didn’t have)
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • I also added pine nuts


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Peel the butternut squash, remove the seeds, and cut it into 3/4-inch cubes. You should have about 6 cups. Place the squash on a sheet pan and toss it with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt (I used less; also added a tiny bit of nutmeg), and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, tossing once, until very tender. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat the chicken stock in a small covered saucepan. Leave it on low heat to simmer.

In a heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter and saute the pancetta and shallots on medium-low heat for 10 minutes, until the shallots are translucent but not browned. Add the rice and stir to coat the grains with butter. Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes. Add 2 full ladles of stock to the rice plus the saffron, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Stir, and simmer until the stock is absorbed, 5 to 10 minutes. Continue to add the stock, 2 ladles at a time, stirring every few minutes. Each time, cook until the mixture seems a little dry, then add more stock. Continue until the rice is cooked through, but still al dente, about 30 minutes total. Off the heat, add the roasted squash cubes and Parmesan. Mix well and serve.

For the first time since 1982, an American has won the New York City Marathon!!! 😀


7 Responses

  1. I made this recently and loved it. Ina’s recipe definitely has a crazy amount of fat, though! I was able to cut the fat in half and it was still totally decadent.

    • Thanks for your comment. I just checked out your blog and I really like it! Adding to my blogroll. And, yes, this is such a good recipe. I doctored it a bit and it’s still addictive.

  2. That risotto looks awesome! Any hooray for the NYC Marathon winner!

  3. […] W00t.  I should be able to get back to my regular workouts now.  Speaking of which, I am down two pounds due to more exercise, better eating, and no monthly […]

  4. […] fun was make Real Simple’s Sweet Potato Risotto.  So good and *much* less fattening than the butternut squash risotto.  It wasn’t quite as rich and creamy due to the lack of exorbitant amounts of butter and […]

  5. […] from Thursday night so I’ll either make the same dish again or perhaps a lighter version of this butternut risotto.  Each store was only a couple of miles away from the last but due to my lazy, indulgent browsing […]

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