Just Call Me Fred

12 Feb


Yesterday was a fun day!  After sleeping in for a bit, Nick and I both got up to complete our respective long runs.  The temps (with wind chill) were below zero here in Chicago, so I decided to run inside.  I also figured it would be a good idea to give myself the option to stop and move to a lower-impact activity if necessary.

Over the course of the week, I got to thinking about what may have caused my foot pain – aside from the obvious “Too Much Too Fast Too Soon”.  One thing that came to mind was my shoes.  For years I’ve favored Saucony running shoes, because they tend to run on the wider side – which is a necessity when you’ve been blessed with Fred Flinstone Feet.












Thanks, Dad!

However, my most recent pair has felt noticeably more snug than  normal.  I actually even had a difficult time tying double knots in my right shoe, since I had to loosen the laces so much.  Nick recently alerted me to the fact that Saucony does manufacture my model of shoes in a “D” width so, after much debate, I finally bit the bullet and ordered the wides.  I was really nervous that the shoes would look ridiculous since I have such small feet for my height to begin with (5’8″, size 7.5 feet).  But, I’m happy to report that my wide shoes don’t look too much different than the regular width.








So, armed with my Fred Flinstone shoes, I headed over to the treadmill and completed 6 miles at a 10:00 pace.  At the end of 6, I felt no pain in my foot but had a nagging pain at the back of my left knee.  It was very similar to the type of pain I felt before my IT Band flared up last year, so I hopped off the treadmill and biked for 20 minutes to loosen up the muscle.  Then I ended my workout with 2 more miles on the treadmill.  I told myself I’d be happy with 10 miles, and although I didn’t quite meet that mark, I was OK with how this workout went.  I’m hoping to be back up to my scheduled mileage (13 miles) by next weekend.

Once I got home, I rolled my legs out a TON and then geared myself up for a super fun afternoon/evening!  This weekend just happens to be Nick’s 29th* birthday!

Birthday Boy

We had a fun time opening a few early presents, although I think Izzie had the most fun of all.










Wrapping paper balls are so much fun to tear up.

Later in the afternoon, we got all dolled up for Nick’s birthday dinner at Moto.  You may recall that some of my favorite Top Cheftestants this season hailed from Moto, so when I was able to get a reservation for Nick’s birthday weekend I couldn’t resist.

Our reservation was for 5:30PM, and I am so glad it was!  Moto provides guests with a total dining experience, focusing on innovative and inventive dishes, and has been touted as a leader in the world of molecular gastronomy.  Part of the dining experience is that the menu is set each evening, and diners are presented with either 15 or 20-course tasting menus.  We ended up being there for almost 3 hours!








As you can see, our first dish was called the “spring roll menu” and was, quite literally, a spring roll menu.  The menu for the evening was printed on rice paper, which was served alongside several spring roll “fillings”.  Once you perused the menu, you packed it with the ingredients, rolled it up, and dug in.  It was an exciting start to the evening, and pretty tasty to boot!

All of the dishes were fantastic, but there was one standout favorite for both me and Nick.









The Cigar Tasting featured 3 sandwiches rolled to look like cigars.  The sandwiches were pumped up versions of ham & cheese, cuban, and philly cheesesteak.  They were served in an ashtray, and were topped off with some powdered black and white sesame seeds which had been frozen in liquid nitrogen.  When the frozen, powdered seeds were added to the dish, which was done tableside, they truly gave off the illusion of a smoking ashtray.  The visuals on this dish were outstanding, and the flavors were spot-on.  I had absolutely no trouble eating a cigar and fully believe that, if Chris J. had served this dish (assuming it tasted as good as it did last night) to anyone other than the Real Housewives of Texas, he would’ve won the challenge for sure!

At one point in the evening, Nick found a small bone in one of his pieces of meat.  When he let our server know about this, we were assured that they would make up for it in some way.  Well, they did this in the best way possible for two self-proclaimed food nerds.  They brought us downstairs for a tour of the kitchen!

I was disappointed that Chris wasn’t there so I could personally tell him that his cigars were the highlight of my meal.  However, all of the chefs that we did meet were incredibly nice and friendly.  We even caught a glimpse of Richie and a quick wave “Hey!” while he was prepping some food.  Although I expected the kitchen to look a bit more “lab-like”, given the food, the thing that I found most interesting was that there were several TVs on which the chefs could see the diners in order to keep track of what course each table was on.  There was also Tetris music playing, which was pretty funny!










Overall, we had a wonderful experience at Moto, and I am so glad that we had the opportunity to experience yet another fantastic Chicago restuarant.

Now I’m off to enjoy my Sunday, and celebrate Valentine’s day a few days early!  Enjoy your day!

*Nick is not really turning 29, he’s turning 33.  But I told him that since we’re married now, he can assume my age to make him feel better about being so old.  You’re welcome, Nick!


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