Tag Archives: emotion

The Racer

Late last year I was looking for some poems about running that I could put up at work. See, the password policy had changed and the password to login needs to be complex and change frequently and I can’t remember them. But if I have a poem, I can use phrases from the poem to create my password and because the poem is up on my cubicle wall, I have a prompt at hand. The running poems does not look out of place, it is underneath my Up and Running 5K course certificate.

One of the poems I found is The Racer by John Masefield. John Masefield was an English poet and writer (1878-1967) and was the poet laureate of the UK from 1930.

I saw the racer coming to the jump,
Staring with fiery eyeballs as he rusht,
I heard the blood within his body thump,
I saw him launch, I heard the toppings crusht.

And as he landed I beheld his soul
Kindle, because, in front, he saw the Straight
With all its thousands roaring at the goal,
He laughed, he took the moment for his mate.

Would that the passionate moods on which we ride
Might kindle thus to oneness with the will;
Would we might see the end to which we stride,
And feel, not strain, in struggle, only thrill.

And laugh like him and know in all our nerves
Beauty, the spirit, scattering dust and turves.

And because I had to look it up… turves is the plural for ‘turf’ and so means ‘grass and the surface layer of earth held together by its roots’ and that is a nice running surface.

The third verse really speaks to me – here it is again

Would that the passionate moods on which we ride
Might kindle thus to oneness with the will;
Would we might see the end to which we stride,
And feel, not strain, in struggle, only thrill.

If I could only focus that emotion I have into getting the job done! And if I could take the effort and have that spur me on! Even the difficult times, knowing that I was making progress. I would surely reach my goals!

I read this poem maybe once a week, and think about the struggles on the journey. Getting up early to go running when I don’t want, pushing myself to finish a workout when I want to stop, not eating the chocolate last night because I had eaten enough food yesterday, food planning, food prep in advance and all of the little things like tracking food and making sure the washing is done so I have clean workout clothes which can seem a burden. It is all part of the journey. Sometimes it is a strain and a burden and sometimes I don’t get it all done. But I want the goal. I want the ‘far off’ health and fitness that I am striving for. I want to go walking with my grandchildren in 30 years time.

I like this poem. And it is good to have things about me which help me reflect on the journey, that the choices I make today are important for the long term goal.

Am here, it’s monday…

No weigh in today.

But I went running this morning. I went up the hill on the walk that I started going up at the beginning of the year. It was my hard walk. Today I walked up the hill to the track that runs around the crown of the hill. Then I ran about 3/4 of that back to my starting point and I walked back down. It was cool, the sun was rising. And it was very good.

Especially very good as the small one woke when I got up and was really awake – none of this snoozing nonsense! My man got up to look after him so that I could go out. I am very grateful.

As I was coming back I remembered a couple of things. I know who I am. I like who I am. I don’t always manage everything, some things are harder to process than others. Some things I deal with pretty badly. But there are lots of things I am good at, there are lots of things about me that I like. I know who I am. I like who I am. That doesn’t change because of some issues that were very much front of head for the last couple of weeks. I got through the last couple of week. And today I got up and I did some exercise. And I agreed to make healthy choices for the rest of the day.

I need to not weigh in for a little while. I need to remove that ongoing challange with the scale and focus on making healthy choices consistently. I need to think of how I want to go forward next year. Having a plan this year was brilliant. But next year I need a different kind of plan and some different goals. This will be my focus for the next couple of weeks – that and getting through each day.

Roast Banana Ice Cream

Fall down, wallow on the ground for a little while, try to pick self up again. That is what I am doing at the moment… picking myself up. Why and so on and so forth is another story and I am not yet up enough to elaborate. But I wanted to say that falling down happens, it is not all easy and happy. If I don’t write when I am there then it will never get posted…

So. Not doing great but doing ok. I have decided that chocolate won’t actually help me feel better. I remembered before I started. That is not to say I won’t start later. But I am looking for other things to amuse me till bed time which are uplifting and affirming.

Cooking is one of those things for me. I get captured in the idea of the recipe. I want to know how it tastes and smells. How it looks. I want to see if the method works well or if there are ways I think I can make it better. I want to think about the next time I make it and how I will change the recipe. Cooking takes me from where I am into a world that is fun; where I can play. It is not about the eating (although that does come into it at some point).

I came across a recipe in the week that I had wanted to try some time ago. I had once clipped it, stored it and then promptly forgot about it. And then I found it again. Roast Banana Ice Cream. I think frozen bananas are great. They have a creamy texture and are smooth and sweet. Roast Banana Ice Cream should have the same creaminess but also that caramel depth that comes from the roasting. As the bananas were roasting I could smell the flavours develop and it made me smile.

The original recipe was simple enough, take your bananas, cut them up, add some brown sugar and butter and roast till soft. Blend with some milk, vanilla, a pinch of salt. Chill then churn in an ice cream maker. You don’t want too much milk or you lose the creaminess of the banana. But if I used yoghurt instead that might work. Or what about coconut milk? But I don’t want the fat. I could use light evap milk flavoured with coconut essence… and so on. I think the first time round I will keep it simple and I can extrapolate next time. I have summer ahead of me… if it works, it might become an easy and healthy dessert option for hot summer days.

Roast Banana Ice Cream
3 ripe bananas
1 tbs brown sugar
1 tbs butter or margarine (I used margarine)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbs lemon juice
pinch salt
2 cups reduced fat milk

Cut the bananas into 2 cm chunks, place in a oven proof dish with the sugar and margarine and bake for 30 minutes at 400’F, mixing once half way through (our oven has the temps in F which is a bit frustrating since the rest of the country is in C…).

Scrape the banana and sticky mess into a blender (or a bowl if you are using a stick blender). Add the remaining ingredients and blend till smooth. Chill in the fridge 8 hours or overnight and then churn in an icecream maker (or throw into a shallow container in the freezer for two hours, whisk through, back in the freezer for 2 hours, whisk again and then freeze. It won’t be as smooth but it will still be tasty.)

Total kJ 2976 which is just under 500kJ if you divide it into 6 serves. I don’t know yet how many serves we will get out of it… At least 4 for sure which is 744 kJ.

I haven’t finished yet so I can’t tell you what it is like. The mixture is currently in the fridge, chilling. I used to make custard based ice creams once and I like that this banana/milk mixture has an almost custard like consistency- I was a little worried that it might be too thin but I don’t think it is. The mixture tastes like banana and lemon and sugar. It is nice and gentle. And it made me smile again.

I will edit this post tomorrow night after I churn the ice cream and have some for dessert. But given the taste and texture right now, I am hopeful.

And I feel better. Which was the point.

Edit: Amazing flavour but churning failure. I was a little too enthusiastic and tried to churn the icecream this morning. The bowl was not cold enough and it did not work so I put the whole lot in the freezer thinking it would freeze quickly. I discovered tonight that my freezer is not cold enough… There were huge ice crystals in the mix. We had some for dessert anyway and my boy loved it 🙂 I will try again but really aim for a smooth creamy texture… But it was delicious. Well worth trying again.