so i've developed this little habit.
when i run at the gym, i like to watch the food network. that's strange, right? in a very counter-intuitive kind of way. but it's actually not some weird masochistic thing or anything - though the food does often look really tasty - i just find it makes the time go by a little faster.
while on the treadmill today, watching gia de laurentiis make an eggplant, tomato, and penne dish, i pondered why this habit of watching the food network is working for me. i think that it's largely due to the fact that cooking shows are easy to watch with the sound off (rachael ray, i'm especially looking at you here). at the gym in our apartment complex, you have to plug into a little machine attached to the cardio machines in order to get sound, and really, i'd always rather run to music that the chatter of the tv anyway. so i can watch a half hour cooking show on mute, easily follow what's going on, and even play little guessing games as the meal progresses: what kind of raw meat is that, anyway? hmmm, what kind of salad will rachael ray serve with buffalo chicken pizza? and what kind of crazy cocktail will sandra lee come up with today??
however, i have to say, the cooking show combined with a 5K run has its off days. for example, at about the 2.9 mile mark today, i could no longer bear to watch ina garten making french toast. the milk, the butter, the big floppy pieces of bread squishing around in it - gack. if i'm going to puke on the treadmill, i damn sure want it to be because i've just freakishly run a half marathon, not because of televised dairy products.
overall, though, i highly recommend the food network as an amenable running companion. hey, maybe you'll even get an idea for a new dinner to make when you get off the treadmill. (i wouldn't know, as i usually get tripped up somewhere between the "boil water" and "drop ingredients in" portion of any recipe, but hey, it might work for you.)