Obstacles and Fettuccine with Basil Pesto

by Joanne on September 17, 2010

A quote by Henry Ford

Obstacles are those frightening things that become visible when we take our eyes off our goals.

Initially, we are excited about our new goals, e.g. first marathon.  Training comes easily since we are experiencing the thrill and excitement of reaching new heights and undertaking new challenges.  This excitement fuels our daily training.

It starts to get tough when there’s 2 to 3 weeks left before the event.  Daily workouts are now greeted with a “just let me get through this and get it over with” attitude.  Since we’ve invested 6 months of hard training to get to this point, we keep going. 

I’m at that point.  This week has been rough. 


Speed work scheduled for Thursday was forfeited for an extra hours worth of sleep.  Some events didn’t make it any easier.  Monday was an 18 mile long run which set the alarm off at 3:35 am.  Tuesday was a trip for work which set the alarm off at 3:20 am for a 6 am flight. No shut-eye until 10:15 pm that evening.  Lack of food on Tuesday while travelling didn’t help either.  Wednesday was a 6 mile lazy run.  Thursday came the crash.

Thursday, up at 4 am only to discover I had forgot to put in my CRT lenses (can’t see without a 7 hour eye adjustment).  Now I had to run with the lenses in. Not good and certainly not comfortable.  I got on the treadmill only to get  off again 2 minutes later.  I think it was 2 minutes as I was in a fog and have no clue how long I was on it.  Upstairs to the couch.  I slept another hour. Shane and I ran 6.4 miles.  It was a “junk” run:  meaningless, slower than my easy mile pace should be.  Mid morning in the car, I forgot to put the car in park before turning it off. Hmmmm… why won’t the key turn????!!!  Got home from work and got out of the car without turning it off….garage door is down….can you say carbon monoxide poisoning??????   This is burn out.  This is getting over tired and not listening to your body. 

How do I keep going?  I keep saying…”only two more weeks…only   TWO    MORE    WEEKS”.  Don’t get me wrong, I love running but now I’m putting pressure on myself to accomplish so many miles per week at a set pace.  This is not always possible due to life’s events. Still, we push on, motivating ourselves by what ever means we can.  The quotes are helping. 

Friday’s workout (I shouldn’t have…shame on me):   Treadmill for 5 1/2 miles at  8.4 pace.  Shane and I ran  2.7  miles with strides. Total miles=8.2.  I felt really good today.

Saturday is a day off, just a long walk with Shane.  Sunday is the Delta Lake Half Marathon.  The Half will just have to be my speed work for the week.  Hopefully, I can pace myself at a good time that will build confidence for my marathon.

Fettuccine translated is Little Ribbons.   A Pasta Recipe.

The best pesto is made with the freshest ingredients, from the best quality extra virgin olive oil down to the best Parmesan cheese.  


This recipe will serve 4


  • 1/2 lb whole wheat fettuccine – cook al dente according to the package directions.
  • 1/2 lb cut green beans
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 3 large garlic cloves *less if you prefer
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup toasted pine nuts:  put under broiler for only a minute or two – under constant watch. Pine nuts brown very quickly and will continue to brown when taken from the broiler.

In a food processor or blender, puree the basil, garlic, pine nuts, lemon, and oil just until you get a smooth paste. Do not over process it will get warm and turn off color.

Put the puree in a bowl and stir in the Parmesan cheese. Taste it….add your salt and pepper.  Set aside.

Blanch green beans in salted water for about 5 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

Cook your pasta if you haven’t already.

In a serving bowl, add your pasta and beans.  Pour the pesto over and gently mix in.  Serve topped with the toasted pine nuts.


This was such a refreshing dish with all the fresh and simple flavors.  Healthy whole wheat pasta and the good fat, olive oil.  So good.


One word of advice, make sure you have breath mints for dessert.


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  • At 2010.09.17 08:40, HappyWhenNotHungry said:

    This looks delicious! I’ve never added green beans to pesto dishes before, but they look great, and I’m sure they add a wonderful crunch as well. Thanks for sharing!

    • At 2010.09.17 13:39, Joanne said:

      They made a very good addition. Try it.

      • At 2010.09.17 09:43, Sophie said:

        MMMMMMM,..a delightful fettucini pesto dish! I love it!

        Now, you are making me so hungry,…again!

        • At 2010.09.17 13:39, Joanne said:

          Great! Job accomplished 🙂

          • At 2010.09.17 10:32, Heather said:

            Girl, you better be careful – LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you need to rest, then rest. Taking 2 days off won’t kill all the training you have put in. You’re almost there!

            Fettucine noodles are definitely my favorite!!

            • At 2010.09.17 13:40, Joanne said:

              I know. Those were my thoughts on Thurs. morning which is why I took to the couch.

              • At 2010.09.17 11:25, Monet said:

                Pine nuts are my new favorite food item…they are expensive, but they are oh-so-good! Thanks for the motivation to keep our eyes set on our goals, despite the “obstacles” that are set before us. I hope you have a weekend full of productivity, rest and lots of love.

                • At 2010.09.17 13:40, Joanne said:

                  I love the texture pine nuts add to a dish.

                  • At 2010.09.17 14:27, Lori (Finding Radiance) said:

                    Be careful with the burnout! You certainly could afford to take 2 days off. You seem quite ready to do the marathon now!

                    Pesto is awesome, too! Yum.

                    • At 2010.09.17 16:19, Joanne said:

                      I will. Thanks Lori. Love that Pixie. She’s too cute.

                      • At 2010.09.17 15:41, Amanda @ bakingwithoutabox said:

                        Oh that pasta dish looks goooood! Parm and pine nuts. All sorts of good things.

                        Hang in there with the training. You will do great on the 1/2. Just remember that you have to focus on the body and only push it where it’s willing to do those last few weeks. (I’m one to talk as my achilles problem is self induced by pushing way too hard) But I’m trying to study a little Chi Running and focus on working with the body instead of just powering through.

                        You’re going to do great! That 1/2 will go well and it’s just a stepping stone to the full. We all have faith in you! (And Shane)

                        • At 2010.09.17 16:20, Joanne said:

                          That would be so great if Shane could run a race with me. We wouldn’t make very good time but it
                          would be fun. 🙂

                          • At 2010.09.17 21:32, Indi said:

                            yummy looking dish!! hope things calm down

                            • At 2010.09.18 04:48, claudia lamascolo said:

                              Sounds like you need a rest! Good luck on your raisin contest hope you win, this recipe sounds and looks amazing!

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