Thursday, February 28, 2013

Thursday Thoughts

Today I'm linking up with Jen's not really a link up, link up.   And for the record, if you have never read Jen's blog, you are going to need to.  She's my long time gambling-loving, TV-watching, Target shopping, buddy from that state up north (who I have actually never met in real life!...story on that later). But yeah, she rocks and so does her blog.

So Thursday Thoughts....

Today's workout...quick 2 mile run before teaching Title Boxing.  I was drenched by 7 a.m.  Just the way I like it. 

What is Duck Dynasty and why is everyone talking about it?  Do I need to watch this?  You know I hate to not be in the know.

Why is everyone shocked that tomorrow is March?  I don't know about you guys but I've been counting down the days to the month that contains daylight savings time,  the first day of spring, and all other signifiers of sunnier days ahead.  Why is everyone else shocked?

Today I had a Spark and two Thermoplus together and am pretty sure I did a whole days work in 5 minutes.  I was bouncing off the walls.  

So now Kennedy, age 6 is addicted to Candy Crush.   If you don't have time to spare, do NOT download this game.

And lastly

Stay tuned for my very first blog giveaway!  Hollah!  

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

So What Wednesday

So What Wednesday

Another week has gone by and it's time for a link up with Shannon for SWW.

  • So what if I cancelled my planned workout before the crack of dawn yesterday.  My body felt beat up and I needed a break.  Too bad I was still up for the day at 5:15 a.m.  
  • So what if I sent the two year old to "school" on Monday.  We had no heat and I was dealing with the repair man.  Plus, I had a slew of other things to check off my list that were nearly impossible to complete with a two year old in tow.
  • So what if I'm seriously planning to take an afternoon and haus it down on my Girl Scout cookies when they get here?   How's that for healthy living?
  • So what if I'm wasting valuable moments of my evening all while turning my brain to mush by playing Candy Crush?  Where did this game come from and why is it so addicting?  
  • So what if I hate going to the movies?  Yes, I know there are good movies out there right now. However, if we have a date night or I'm having a girls night, the movies are the last place you'll find me.  Yawn. I prefer my own couch, my own snacks, and my own bathroom.  Taking the kids is another story. But me going willingly, with no kids in tow, will never happen.
  • So what if I can't stop buying pajama pants?  It's been a lifelong addiction. And they make me oh so happy.
What are you saying So What to this week?  Feel free to link up with Shannon and fill us in!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The time I started running

Really there is no rhyme or reason to how this little addiction of mine began.   I had casually ran track in Jr. High and part of HS.  I was always a sprinter and thought those Cross Country people were seriously cray.   I was amazed that they had the desire or strength to run for 30 minutes straight.   I finished HS and never gave running a second thought.

After I graduated from Ohio State, I decided to up and move to Cincinnati.   I landed a job, made a few friends, but really had no "hobby."    I thought.  Hmmm... despite not running in years...maybe I'll run a marathon???  That'll be my hobby!      I did continue to work out throughout college so was somewhat in shape.  However,  running a marathon and doing the stair master while rocking out to Lenny Kravitz  are two different beasts.  

So yeah, before I could change my mind, I signed up for a marathon.  I'd never even run a 5k but per usual, I'm impulsive and set my sights high.

So I printed out a 20 week training plan and started my training.     I set out for my first 3.5 mile "training" run and it was hard.    And it was hot.  And I didn't even have running shorts.   Or a proper  bra for that matter.     I really had no idea what I was doing but remembered reading somewhere (Shape magaine, perhaps?) that beginner runners should start out by alternating running and then walking.    Sound familiar?  Couch to 5k anyone?       Anyway, I ended up running at a snails pace for 4 or 5 minutes and then walking for a minute.    I did this until I hit my 3.5 miles.    After that first run, I did feel a big sense of accomplishment.   And I felt excited about this  new little hobby of mine.

The funny thing is, this was all  before anyone had a running GPS.  So what did I do?  I used to get in my car before my run and literally drive my route to measure it out perfectly and then drive home, park my car, and hit the road.      Pretty comical now that we are in the land of Runkeeper apps and Garmin's.

After a few weeks, I worked up to a point where I could run these miles without walking.  I was SLOW but I was still running.

Over the course of my training,  I recruited some other newbie runners along the way.  We  were pretty clueless but at least we were in the same boat.

In retrospect, ignorance was bliss.   It's a miracle that I didn't injure myself.   And it's a miracle that I continued on with training, despite always feeling somewhat behind the 8 ball.  

I did end up finishing my inaugural marathon.  My time was not good and my recovery took way longer than it should have.  However, mentally I felt pretty darn good and pretty high on life.

The addiction begins when you get a taste of crossing that finish line.  A desire to beat your old time just adds fuel to the fire.

Today, I've been running consistently for 15 years.  Minus a couple pregnancies and a couple minor running burn outs.   Saying I'm so glad that I stuck with it is an understatement.  It's my BFF, my love, my therapy, my peace.

But yeah, don't do what I did.    Start small.  Make a 5k or 10k your goal and move up from there.

I'll be doing some upcoming posts on how to PROPERLY start running.   So stay tuned!

Monday, February 25, 2013

How I start my day...

For those of you who know me, you know how I start my day.  For those of you who don't, giddy up.  This is what happens up in here approximately 6 out of 7 days.

It goes a little something like this.   Within about 5 min. of waking or as soon as I can stumble to the kitchen,  I mix up a Spark and take 3 Catalyst.   If I was on top of things the night before, I have this all laid out.     Within 5-10 minutes I'm a full functioning human.


What's so magical about this combination, you ask?   Well for starters it will kick start your day in a way with a vengeance in about 8 minutes.    You'll feel a little energy kick but will also feel good and dare I say... a bit happy? In the morning?  It's true.     Spark  is packed to the gills with B Vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to provide a healthy, balanced source of energy.   It's sugar free and only 45 calories.  It contains 120 mg of SLOW release caffeine so no jitters or shakes.   And lastly, it improves mental focus.   Oh and it tastes delish.  In the winter, I drink my morning spark hot but drink it cold the remainder of the time.  

Next we have Catalyst which just may be my very favorite Advo product of all.  I take this any time I drink a Spark and before I work out.   This is an amino acid supplement that is designed to help you maintain muscle mass.   Basically, it protects your muscle while you are in weight loss mode but it also gives you a look of being "lean."    It has allowed me to gain definition that I had never seen before, despite working my tail off and doing many of the very same workouts.   LOVE, love, love Catalyst.

At this point, I either go work out or I dilly dally around, planning my day and getting the kiddos ready.      I then bust out the blender and get ready for this simple, yet divine concoction.   Don't be scared.

Here we have:
2 cups of organic spinach
1.5 cups of original Almond Milk,
a frozen banana (this is important)

Blend it all up (add a little water if it appears too thick) and you get this beauty.  

I realize this may look frightening to some of you but I assure you, it is so delicious.  You truly can't taste the nutrient packed spinach.  The combo of the Muscle Gain,   which is an extremely high quality pre digested protein, accompanied with the frozen banana gives you a frothy, milkshake-like consistency.  No joke.   This will fill you up, cost you about 350 calories and packs in close to 30 grams of protein.  Oh, and you are basically ingesting a green salad without even thinking about it.  At breakfast.    Dr. Oz would be thrilled.   

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday Sentiments

So who is totes fired up for the Oscar's?  In all honesty,  I really haven't seen many of the films but  absolutely love checking out what everyone is wearing.   In fact, I've had the E! countdown on forhours.  This pretty much sums it all up here.  

I'm obsessed with soaking in this after a long run.  

Seriously, run to Target.  Or Walgreens, or CVS, or Drug Mart asap.  It's is $2.39 for a carton and provides the most relaxing soak ever.  It helps to ease tired or sore muscles.  It is also supposed to help to eliminate toxins from the body.  All I know is it is an uber relaxing soak and I've been burning through a carton of this about every 5 days.  I used it after our 12 miler this a.m. and it was bliss.

And speaking of running, my weekly mileage for the week was 33 miles.  Training is starting to ramp up with a 14 miler on Saturday.  On deck is Blue Ridge Marathon on April 20th, Cap City Half Marathon on May 4th, and Cleveland Marathon on May 19th.  Yes, I be cray cray.   But the good news is, so are some of my friends.   Stay tuned for posts soon on how I train, how I fuel, and how I decide which races to do.

Why doesn't Chipotle have a drive thru?  Seriously?   All I yearn for is this beautiful creation.

However, 9 times out of 10, I am not willing to get my two year old out of the car to go inside and go through the hoopla of ordering my bowl.   Seriously, Chipotle.  If Subway can do it, so can you.

And lastly, where in the french toast are my Girl Scout Cookies???  

Friday, February 22, 2013

Friday Letters


Time for a little link up with Ashley for some Friday fun.

Dear high winds, why must you spew my recycling bin all over creation and allow my neighbors to witness all of my dirty secrets?

Dear two year old,  nope it's still not light outside.  In fact, it's 3:30 a.m.  Good thing you are cute.

Dear short girl on the treadmill next to me,  stop running so fast.  You know I have to race you.

Dear the Muse,  why do I love that Madness song so much?  I can't stop with the obsession.

Dear Express, stop sending me coupon booklets.   I don't even like you that much but the coupons with the skinny girl in the spring clothes makes me think I do.

Dear weather, either s*it or get off the pot.   If you are gonna snow, then you need to dump on us.  Stop messing around with the frigid temps and snow flurries.

Dear Giant Eagle, why are there only 3 registers open at 5 p.m.?  Seriously?   I keep threatening to break up with you and go to Kroger but your stupid gas perks keep me coming back.

Dear Bobbi Brown, stop making those pretty nude/brown colors I love.   Your sales lady told me that you have a ton of new gloss's coming out in a couple weeks and that's gonna be a real problem.

Dear Lululemon,  I love you but why is your stuff so ugly lately?  Seriously?  I don't want this relationship to end so please get it together and stop making weird color block combos.

and lastly,

Dear husband,  thanks for being a lamb and making the bed every day.  Seriously, you know that an unmade bed makes me homicidal and I love you for making the bed when you get out of it.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Why I Run

It's pretty obvious that non-runners think us runners are totally one sandwich short of a picnic when they get wind of our weekly mileage.   Especially when we are in training mode.   I think it's only fair that I attempt to explain the madness.

If you aren't a runner, it's hard to wrap your mind around the whole crazy concept.  But if you are, you know exactly where this is going.

1.  Stress relief.  This is a given.   There is just no better release than the one you get after accomplishing a nice sweaty run.  Long or short.  The stress is lifted.

2.  Anxiety relief.  It's no secret that I'm a certifiable anxious nut job when it comes to lists and getting crap done. Ask anyone.    It may not get done, but my lists keep me awake at night.    This is my chance to pound the pavement and to drown out my responsibilities and to totally forget about my to do list and mound of laundry.

3.  It's amazingly social!   I run with the most amazing group of women every week.  We are moms, wives, employees, daughters, caregivers, the list is endless, really.    We are real women with real bodies and we all come together to do this one thing that clears our mind, makes us feel strong,  and makes us yearn for more. The bonding experience is amazing, really.  

My girls, plus B- Lo!

4.  Runners get each other.   We talk about how many layers to wear for what temps, we talk about the fear of having to poop, we talk about chafing, we give that runner who is struggling our last gel, we wave at strangers who are running in sub zero temps.  We just get each other.

5.  There is no better feeling in the world than crossing the finish line.  I tear up every single time and it ranks right up there with the feeling of giving birth or my wedding day.  And I'm not alone.

6.  You swear you will never run again and are certain that mile 22 is hell but by mid afternoon you will be saying "I can't wait to do that again."   You'll be googling upcoming races by noon the next day.   You'll be signed up for something else within 7 days.  Promise.  

7. It sets an amazing example for our kiddos.  They need to see us being active.  The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.   I cherish this picture of my 6 year old crossing the finish line of a half marathon with me this summer.    Not to mention, it's a family affair!

8.   I get to buy cute running gear.   Seriously, when you put this kind of mileage on shoes, they have to be replaced every few months.   And you pretty much always need a new race outfit.   It's pretty much required.  

9.   It makes me feel thankful.   For everything.   I think of  my hospice patients who are dying and I can't help but to feel gratitude that I can run and be out in the elements, no matter what they may be.   It's humbling and gratifying, all at the same time.  

10.   There is no better sense of reward than setting a goal, pushing your body to the max, and  trusting yourself in achieving it.   Promise.

More of my running besties.  Runnermommy is on the left!

  It can seem so intimidating at first but I promise you, anyone can run!  Stay tuned for a post on HOW to get started!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

So What Wednesday!

I figured it was high time that I participated in my friend, Shannon's weekly link up.  Every week, her posse basically says So What? to some of the little, comical things in life.

So What Wednesday

This week I'm saying So What if....

* I wiped my two year olds runny nose on my sleeve at Target.   Not once but not more times than I can count on one hand either.   Desperate times call for desperate measures.

*I had margaritas, chips, and queso for dinner while at an Advocare training.  We were in Texas and it   couldn't be helped.

*I've put away all of my winter coats in attempt to expedite spring.

*And on that note, I'm counting down the days until we spring forward.  19 days to go. Hollah!

*I have been Pinteresting like it's my job, yet haven't created a thing in months.

*My monthly subscription box addiction is growing.  I clearly blame Jennifer.

*I'm seriously going through withdrawal missing Breaking Bad.  Seriously, I yearn for the feeling of seeing unwatched episodes on my Netflix.   Now we've got nothin'.

What are you saying So What to??

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Some changes

Turns out a lot has changed in the world of blogging since I last blogged in 2008.   Like pretty much everything.  So bear with me while this blog goes from ridiculously elementary to hopefully a well oiled machine in a couple months.

In the meantime, I figured I would share some things I'm currently loving with you guys.

First things first.  If you know me, you know I'm obsessed with lipgloss.   This one is pretty much the cat's meow.  Philosophy's Animal Crackers.   Smells and tastes just like iced animal cookies and gives a fabulous pinky/ taupe glossy glow.   This was introduced to me by a very dear friend and fellow lipgloss nut Runnermommy who also NEEDS to be blogging.   Take a gander.

And next we have my favorite snack on the go.  Jif Natural PB to go.   Seriously, I would die without one of these in every bag.   I pack them for work, I stir them in my oatmeal, I dip carrots in them, I eat them with a spoon.   I can binge on peanut butter on a dime so LOVE that these are automatic portion control.

And I'm seriously loving this dog.  We need it.  My kids love her.  We've already named her.   We are currently in "operation convince the husband" mode.   Who else thinks we need her?

And lastly...someecards.  Seriously, how do they always know what I'm thinking?  There is always a perfect card for every occasion and every type of friendship.   Love me some someecards. 

That about sums it up for now.   Toodles, friends.  

Monday, February 18, 2013

Here we go, yo!

Wow.   It's been a minute.   A little about me....I had a blog from 2007-2008 called The Perfect Balance.  While I loved blogging on the reg, I kind of let it die a slow, painful death.     After so many months of not updating, I felt like I had missed my window to revive it.   It was basically a lifestyle blog about about healthy living, running, some beauty product reviews here and there, and some family shenanigans.

So here I am.   I really don't see this blog being all that much different than The Perfect Balance.  I still love the same things.   I really just want a place to document the things I love and also to share my love of Advocare products, which I can say have changed my life for the better.  I still love running, shopping, and of course my little family of four.    Stick around!