Tag Archives: #running

A Fall Weekend and Lots of Firsts 

This weekend we seemed to have had a lot of firsts. It was the first in a while that we were able to relax and enjoy some local activities and some downtime at our house.

It seems like every weekend since we moved in we had something going on that required a road trip and a lot of rushing around. Sometimes it’s a complete mystery to me how we have been able to get all of our household chores done and function like adults (mostly anyway) on a weekly basis.

On Saturday our neighbors invited us to go to Becker Farms to drink beer pick apples.
Ok… we picked some apples too. Which I fully plan to put to use in an apple pie. Every year I have made Kris an apple pie for his birthday, and even though it’s going to be a bit late this year (whoops), I’m still planning to keep the tradition alive.

We also had the most delicious donuts ever and planned to pick pumpkins but we had a few too many growlers of Shipyard Pumpkinhead and a little too much fun with our friends and we all lost track of time (in the best way possible). Luckily there was a house on the way home that was selling pumpkins by the road so we got our pumpkin fix.

We really enjoyed exploring the orchards and surprisingly they were not crowded.

I would just love to know what’s going on in his head in this picture.  Why does he look so guilty? 

On Saturday morning when I was running some errands I decided to finally try kombucha. I know I’m way behind the times on this but I’ve been kind of reluctant to try it because it sort of grossed me out. But it actually gave me a nice energy boost and I am looking forward to my next one.

Side note – apparently you’re not supposed to shake before opening.

One more reason I need to clean my car.

Another first that we’ve finally gotten with the times on is Blue Apron. Our friends got us a 3 meal subscription for our wedding and we decided to give it a try this week. I was pretty amazed with the packaging and impressed that everything stays cold and arrives in such good condition.

We actually saved the ice packs and the insulated box for future tailgating needs.

I was a little skeptical at first because the portion sizes looked tiny before everything was made. Depending on the recipe, some of these are supposed to be 3 servings, but we only got 2 out of them.  Overall though I would definitely do it again (maybe just not every week).  It’s a neat experience and it’s fun to try new dishes, but it’s not exactly a quick ‘throw together’ sort of dinner. And it’s also not exactly cheap.

But I can say we will be keeping the recipes because the meals we have made so far turned out delicious.

Random side note – yay for 70 degree weather in October!  I’m still trying to keep my morning runs with the B dog alive!


Have you tried Blue Apron/Hello Fresh/ any others?  What did you think?

What are your favorite fall activities?

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My Summer Fitness Routine, and a Tone It Up Review

Since the arrival of summer I had gotten into a new routine that I really loved. I started a new job in May and have had the ability to start work a little later so I moved my workout routine to the morning. Part of this decision was due to some late nights at work and the uncertainty of whether I would have time to get in a work out. Part of it was because it feels really freaking good to come home  and not have to worry about squeezing in a run (and another shower). And part of it was because I started following the Tone It Up regimen and they strongly encourage morning exercise. 

Now I’m going to be honest. I find K&K to be ridiculously cheesy and sometimes difficult to watch. But when it comes to toning up, those two know what they’re talking about. I’ve read the meal plans and tried to follow them but they’re a bit too restrictive for me. So these are my takeaways which, for me, have proven to be pretty effective. 

1. I started my mornings with their 5 daily exercise moves followed by a 2ish mile run. When you join Tone It Up you get access to their daily exercises. They usually suggest an exercise video of theirs or cardio in addition to the 5 moves and I really just enjoy running too much not to. Plus these are the best months of the year! Unfortunately, it’s finally started getting cold and dark here in Buffalo, so I’m in the market for a new winter routine. 

I really like the daily moves feature of the program because it’s thoughtless for me. Especially if I’m getting up first thing in the morning, it’s so nice not to have to think about choosing a workout. I just log into the Tone It Up app and the 5 exercise moves are up and ready. 

This might be the endorphins talking, but I honestly feel like starting my day with a workout keeps me more present and in tune with my surroundings and my body for the rest of the day. 

2. I have a small glass of their ‘Meta D’ drink. I don’t know what it is about Apple Cidar Vinegar but it just feels so cleansing. It might be 100% in my head but it feels like a great way to jump start your day. The drink consists of apple juice, water, ACV, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. 

The other nice feature about the Tone It Up program is that it’s a one time fee, but there is continued support. Once you sign up for one program you will receive all future updates, and they do continue to update their programs, routines, and challenges so that it doesn’t get stale. Overall, I would recommend it even if you don’t follow it to a tee. 

The rest of the day I go about my business separately from the Tone It Up plan. I had been taking biotin in an effort to grow my hair longer for the wedding along with a multivitamin and fish oil.

I’m not the only one in the house that takes her daily fish oil. (But I am the only one that doesn’t chew it, blahh).

Lately I’ve been loving egg white sandwiches with Swiss cheese on an oatmeal English muffin. The salty and sweet flavors are amazing. I also threw some kale on there to make it feel healthier. 

Now that we’re back from our wedding and honeymoon (details to come!!), it’s been too dark and cold in the mornings to keep running outdoors so I’m in the market for any suggestions! Evenings can work for me but I just really love morning workouts and being able to work out from home. Looks like I better start saving for a treadmill… 

How does your fitness routine change with the seasons? 

Any winter workouts you would recommend? 

Do you prefer mornings or evenings for workouts? 

Half Marathon Training – Week 6

In keeping with my commitment to share the truths of my training and hold myself accountable, here is my latest training recap! 

You can find the others here: 

Half Marathon Training – Week 5
Half Marathon Training Plan + Mantra
Last week’s half marathon training was not exactly what I had planned out, but I did get in 5 days of cardio, so I’m calling it a win. I moved the prior week’s long run to Monday instead of a rest day and I ended up doing the same this week.  I would have liked to have made it to yoga, but I’ve never claimed to be perfect. 

Monday- 6 miles 

Tuesday- at home circuit & stairs

Wednesday- 3 miles

Thursday- tempo run 3 cycles (3.82 miles)

Friday- rest

Saturday- rest

Sunday- 4 miles

Total miles – 16.82

I think Thursday’s tempo run might have been the most difficult. It consisted of 3 cycles of 10 minute runs followed by 2 minutes of jogging. The plan said I should have made it 4.1 miles by the time it was all said and done…

  
… There’s definitely some room for improvement. But overall I felt good. 

Sunday it was warm enough to run outside. I can’t wait for spring running! The outside run was supposed to be 7 miles, but it was cut a little short to allow for a hockey date. 

 
And I got to see my beloved Penguins deliver a healthy smackdown on the Buffalo Sabres. Totally worth it. 

9 weeks until the Pittsburgh Half! 

Are you training for any races? 

Half Marathon Training – Week 5

Last week I hit a few set backs in my half marathon training. But as part of my commitment to stay accountable, I’m sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly.

On Super Bowl Sunday I came down with a nasty head cold that really put me out of commission for a few days. I’m typically one to try to run through a cold because I think it actually helps loosen up the bad stuff and gets things moving. But this time my body was telling me I needed the rest, so I honored that. 

I took a few days off and by Wednesday I felt like I could struggle through a 3 mile run to get back on track. 

Here’s what the week looked like:

Monday – rest (sick)

Tuesday – rest (sick)

Wednesday – 3 mile run (30 minutes)

Thursday – 4 mile run (40 minutes)

Friday – shovel snow

Saturday – 3 mile run (30 minutes) 

Sunday – rest

Total Miles – 10

I was pretty happy with myself for getting 4 workouts in, all things considered (and if your wondering if shoveling snow counts as a workout, come on over to our place on a snowy day. BYOS).

My diet on the other hand was pretty poor. Something about being sick just made me crave sweets. I honestly think the real issue is that being sick stresses me out. I never used to think of myself as a worrier; boy, how things have changed. I resorted to SO many peanut M&Ms it’s embarrassing… not to mention Fruit Loops and Valentine’s Day chocolate

So on Sunday I made a huge batch of Minestrone soup to have for lunches this week in an effort to get back on track. Sugar is definitely addictive to me. But once I can work through a few days without it I don’t usually crave it. 

  

In a surprising twist of events all of that sugar must have benefited me because I felt good running 6 miles this Monday. It’s so strange how just when you think you have it all figured out, you run like a champ after pounding sugar for a week straight. I know from past experience excessive sugar usually slows me down and makes me feel like I’m running with bricks strapped to my feet. But I guess sometimes the opposite is true and I can eat clean and still feel that way, so I’m definitely not complaining! 

Incase you missed it, you can read about my 2016 Half Marathon plan here: 

2016 Half Marathon Plan
How do you keep yourself accountable? 

Can you tell a difference in the way you feel when you eat a lot of sugar?

Half Marathon Training Plan + Mantra

This year I signed up for my 4th half marathon.  

  
There was a time when I never would have believed that. I distinctly remember finding a book on running form at a friend’s house and thinking anyone who ran as a sport or hobby was extremely boring and insane. Yeah, that was probably a little harsh. Someone should have told me never to say never.

  
So now here I am painfully chasing down that 2 hour goal time. (And even the term ‘chasing’ is probably generous.) 

   
The past few years I’ve really floundered. My first race I pretty much ran solely on determination, and although the time was not impressive, I know I could not do that again if I tried (ahhh, youth).

2013 Pittsburgh Half Marathon – 2:21:44

 The second year that I ran the half marathon was my best. I trained, I felt good, and I improved…but I still didn’t meet my goal. 

  
2014 Pittsburgh Half Marathon – 2:08:34

The third year that I ran was filled with moving, starting a new job, and mass confusion. I actually debated skipping. 

2015 Pittsburgh Half Marathon – 2:22:19

Woof. 

So that brings us to 2016. I knew I needed to be committed to a training program, but I also needed a plan that would help me with my speed. So I launched a search… And it was surprisingly successful. 

That’s when I found RUNfit365 and was able to download their 16 Week Intermediate Half-Marathon Training Plan for free.

The plan breaks down different training techniques, explains all of the terminology, and allows you to base your training off of a goal pace. The other thing I really like about it is that it doesn’t require logging crazy miles so it’s completely attainable. 

I am on week 4, and so far I have missed the weekend runs (major fail) and replaced one easy run with a hot yoga class each week. 

So to stay on track I’m going to check in on F&F each week to report my progress, and I’m also going to have a mantra.

  

I’ve heard that having a running mantra can do wonders for your race game. Which I actually believe to be true because I definitely had one for my second half marathon. (Something along the lines of ‘Hell hath no fury like that of a scorned woman’… You get the picture.)

As cheesy as it sounds I’m going to make my mantra to appreciate that I have the time and the ability to train this year. (Having a wedding on the horizon doesn’t hurt either).

Do you have a running mantra? 

Have you ever crushed your goal time? 

Weekend + Monday Motivation

Happy Monday!!!  I hope everyone out there had an excellent weekend!

Ours was pretty good around here.  Friday night was pretty low key.  We made a frozen pizza and watched Southpaw (and admittedly I fell asleep before the end).  Sorry Jake Gyllenhaal.

Saturday was an exciting day!  We picked out our appliances and checked out the house like adults! It’s really starting to come together and we are super excited to hopefully be moving in soon!

building a house

Saturday afternoon Kris’ friend came to visit so me and the B dog snuggled up on the couch to watch a chick flick.  I Red Boxed The Age of Adeline, and I thought it was pretty good.  Definitely predictable, but I like feel good movies and Blake Lively so I thought it was a winner.

the age of adeline

On Sunday we got our tailgate on with some delicious meatball sandwiches and the Bills even brought home a win.

meatball subs

buffalo bills vs miami dolphins

Now for some Monday motivation, since I didn’t do so well last week with the Pile on the Miles challenge that I said I was going to do for my November Goals.  I only logged another 6 miles this week.  So that leaves me with 70 miles to go for November.  I better get my butt moving.  Here’s the plan for the week:

Monday – 5 miles

Tuesday – yoga

Wednesday – 5 miles

Thursday – circuit workout

Friday – rest

Saturday – 5 miles

Sunday – 3 miles

just do it even if you suck at it

What’s your favorite motivational quote?

Halloween Weekend + November Goals

Good morning!  Here we are at the start of another week and we are officially kicking off November.  I can’t believe how fast time is flying!

But first, this weekend was a really great one.  It was one of those rare and special times where everything just seems to come together and everyone in the family is miraculously available.

I loaded up the B dog for a road trip and headed down to my parents on Saturday.

b dog roadtrip

I love spending Halloween with my parents, sitting on the porch with the pups and handing out candy.  I have spent many-a Halloweens at my parents house, and even my sister was able to join this year.

sister time

The pups were all decked out in their Halloween best:

little monsters

Although, we didn’t get to attend any Halloween parties this year, here is a flashback from last year’s Anchorman outfits:

anchorman halloween

On Sunday we were able to round up my brother and we all went to brunch at Bravo.  I didn’t even know they had brunch there, but I got the veggie omelet and it was dee-lish! 

bravo brunch

After brunch we headed over to the shooting range for some quality family bonding time.

shooting range

shooting range

shooting range

Now onto November!  I needed some motivation to keep running outside now that the weather is getting cold.  Kris and I signed up to run the Turkey Trot this year, but that won’t be enough to keep me motivated.  That’s when I found Monica’s Pile on the Miles Challenge 2015.  So I jumped at the chance to have a little motivation in my run game.  I set my goal for the month at 81 miles.  Sounds kind of ridiculous doesn’t it?  It certainly won’t be easy, but I’m going to give it my best shot!

Yesterday I kicked off the month with a 5 mile run:

fall running

5 miles down, 76 to go.

What are your November fitness goals?

Proscuitto Caprese Salad + WWWP5K

Yesterday in an attempt to detox from all of the fish n’ chips and beer consumed in London, I created this salad.  It is fresh, filling, and it tastes great! I made it again for lunch today and I’m looking forward to it. Gotta love days that you look forward to your lunch!

Proscuitto Caprese Salad

Ingredients:

  • Greens of your choice (I used Spring Mix with Herbs, and it added a little extra flavor dimension)
  • 1 roma tomato, diced
  • 1 slice of fresh mozzarella, diced (approx 1/5 of the cheese ball below)
  • 2 slices Proscuitto
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • drizzle of olive oil & balsamic vinegar
    proscuitto salad ingredients

proscuitto caprese salad

After work I hit the road around our neighborhood for the Automatic Worldwide WP 5k 2015.  I came across this blogger challenge yesterday afternoon and thought it was such a great idea.  I was also pretty happy with my time considering I hadn’t run in a week and ate all the food in London.

Don’t mind the time on my Fitbit… I started timing my workout and then didn’t leave the house for about 45 mins. (And yes, I’m that obsessed weirdo wearing both a Garmin and a Fitbit just to go for a short run.)

3 mile run garmin fitbit

Dinner was a pan fried chicken sandwich topped with mayo, tomato, red onion, & baby spinach.  And since it’s getting cold out and we needed some comfort food, we paired it with my favorite Trader Joe’s soup.

tomato roasted red pepper soup

chicken sandwich tomato soup

Thanks for reading and have a great Tuesday!

What foods do you eat when you need comfort food?

Weekend & Workouts

Good morning!  I can’t believe we’re about to have another Monday in the books. But before we get started, I could use a little motivation for the week considering I ate apple pie for most of my meals this weekend.

apple pie

I’m still working on my picture abilities, but I promise it tasted better than it looks.  Just incase you were curious, I used this recipe for the apple filling and this recipe for the double pie crust.

Friday night we had some visitors staying with us and we layed low.  Saturday we drove to Pittsburgh for a baby shower.  We could tell by the sky when we were leaving that it was going to be an interesting drive.

buffalo skyline

Despite the snow and rain we encountered, the leaves were so beautiful!

new york fall leaves

first snowfall

On Sunday, we prepped ourselves for a cold tailgate!  Doesn’t mother nature know it’s still only October??

snow tailgate

Workouts for the week looked a little something like this:

Sunday – 3 mile run

Monday  – 4 mile run

Tuesday – hot yoga

Wednesday – 6 mile run

Thursday – hot yoga

Friday – rest

Saturday – rest

I was pretty happy with my exercise until I ate all the apple pie on my rest days.

This week is actually a short week for us because we are leaving for London on Wednesday!!  We still have so much to do in over the next 2 days.

motivational quote

(Source)

How do you keep your motivation over the weekends?

Random Thoughts I Have While Running

I was originally going to do another ‘What I ate Wednesday’ today, but that quickly went out the door when I forgot to take pictures of every single thing I ate yesterday.  So here’s the quick version:

Breakfast – 1 slice whole grain bread with lots of Trader Joe’s raw almond butter, pumpkin coffee (from Target)

pumpkin coffee

Lunch – pita chips with beet hummus & a spinach salad w/ olive oil & balsamic

Snack –  1 cup of green tea, followed by a pumpkin yogurt ( maybe it’s just me but I was not a fan of Trader Joe’s pumpkin yogurt, good thing I bought 3 of them)

Hot yoga power hour

Dinner – Out to eat – BBQ Grilled Chicken Wrap w/ sweet potato fries and a Pumking

Now that we got that out of the way, when I was running on Monday evening I found this little guy huge scary monster on the sidewalk:

sidewalk snake

Which someone so graciously put a few pieces of mulch around as a ‘warning’.  And then I started thinking… what other strange things have I seen or thought while I was running?

  1. What color would I dye my hair if I was on the run?
  2. Do you think anyone would recognize me? (Who am I, Gone Girl??? watch out, Kris)
  3. If we had to go into hiding in the woods, would B cooperate without a leash?
  4. If this was a zombie apocalypse, could I run any faster than this?
  5. No, I would probably give up and die.
  6. One time when I was running on a trail, someone in a black hoodie crawled out of the woods and I thought it was a bear.  And then I was just terrified of the creepy person that just crawled out of the woods in the middle of nowhere.

runners meme

So there you have it, a brief glimpse into my sick runner’s mind to start your Wednesday.  Thanks for reading, and have a good one!