Runners High Not Found and Orange Ginger Oatmeal Cookies

by Joanne on February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day!  Hope your Valentine does something to make your day super special!

There were no excuses.  The weather was just fine for a good long run this past weekend.  Yes, those body parts I complain about often were sore but with constant stretching, the soreness was manageable. 

At 4:30 am Saturday, I woke up. It’s peaceful with scant traffic at that time on the weekend and, even though it is very early, I look forward to being out there in the darkness with street lights guiding my way.  The quiet calmness of the neighborhoods with only my breathing to focus on is somehow soothing to me.  I don’t listen to music because it’s more satisfying if I tune into my deepest thoughts and analyze my running. 

Up and dressed with the hamstring wrapped,  I began with about 5 minutes of stretching while waiting for the banana and peanut butter to digest.  It wasn’t long before  Shane and I went for a 2 mile warm up.  I continued on my own for the rest of 18 miles total.  It was a good run considering my comfort level was about 75 percent.  I stopped four times to stretch my legs.  They needed it.  Every time, bending over was harder than the last.  At the 12 mile point, I decided to change my route.  The original intention was to run a minimum of 19 1/2 miles.  My entire body was tired, the legs were heavy, and negative thinking was monopolizing my brain.  The “almost 20” wasn’t going to happen on this weekend.  

When I got home, I stood on the porch looking out into the yard thinking of all the ice baths other runners endure after their long runs.  When you live in the North East, your entire yard, covered with snow is your ice bath.  I contemplated laying in the middle of it all, making snow angels while the chill of the snow froze my legs.  It couldn’t be done.  This is a person who needs a wet suit to swim in a pool!  You think I could suffer laying my body on the icy cold ground for even 5 minutes? No.  The ice pack sounded tolerable and much more appealing. 

You would think after a good long run like that the “Runners High” we all love so much would fill my day.  It never came.  Instead I felt nauseated all day and somewhat depressed.  Maybe it was because my goal run was off by a mile and a half?  Maybe I just didn’t fuel my body correctly in the days leading up to the long run?  Instead of the endorphins doing their job on my spirits, I’m left with a lot of doubt regarding the Half Marathon next weekend.  

Trying to turn to more positive thoughts, even if the race turns out to be not one of my best, I’ll still have the warmer weather of South Carolina and the loving embrace of my parents I can’t wait to see.   It will be a nice little getaway no matter what.

My Favorite Cookies


Based on a recipe from “Sweet and Natural” by Meredith McCarty, the flavors in this old fashioned favorite cookie would make anyone feel better.  No eggs, no granulated sugar, just wholesome goodness and lots of OATS!


Makes 3 dozen drop size cookies


  • 2 cups quick cooking oatmeal
  • 1 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup Dried Tart Cherries
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup brown rice syrup
  • 1/2 tsp orange zest
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 tsp ground ginger OR 1 TBS fresh finely grated ginger
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine oatmeal through walnuts.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients.

Add the oil through the extract and mix thoroughly.

Drop by tablespoons on the prepared cookie sheets with about 1 inch in between.  Bake for 25 minutes or until lightly brown.


A little bit crispy with a hint of chewiness


You could use raisins but the tart dried cherries do such a dance on your tongue, I wouldn’t do without them.



Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  • At 2011.02.14 09:13, Treat and Trick said:

    Looks fabulous despite they are sugarless and eggless!

    • At 2011.02.14 09:27, Heather said:

      Awww….Joanne, 18 miles is quite the accomplishment! Maybe you need a few rest days to get back to 100%? Hope you get your running mojo back soon…
      Happy Valentines Day!!

      • At 2011.02.14 13:29, Lori said:

        Joanne – I feel so bad for you. I know how much you love running and it is a bummer when it doesn’t love you back.

        I would probably have eaten a bunch of those cookies 😀

        • At 2011.02.14 14:57, Juliana said:

          Joanne, your oatmeal cookies look so yummie, specially with tart cherries and orange zest…what a perfect match 🙂

          • At 2011.02.14 23:50, Monet said:

            Cherries, oranges and nuts…I am enjoying these cookies already! Now I just need to make them. Thank you for sharing with me tonight. Hugs and well wishes from Austin! Happy Valentine’s Day!

            Previous post:

            Next post: