top 10 things from last week

1. My yoga studio offered a groupon on Sunday! I went for the larger package and got 10 classes for $35. $3.50 per yoga class? I’ll take it.

2. This quote pinned by Sister got close to 100 repins this week.

3. I finished my second new book of the year (5th book total)! Shopaholic Takes Manhattan was a very light and funny read – and definitely what my brain needs after working all day ;). Shopaholic Ties the Knot is next!

4. I got my workouts and all the information for Best Body Bootcamp! Last day to sign up is tomorrow and it starts on Monday! Even though I’m still following my Nashville 1/2 Marathon training plan, I have created a new plan with BBC included. I’ll be posting that every week, but not with the workout detail of course ;). If you want to know what Workout A, B, + C are I greatly encourage you to sign up! Tina, you’re amazing and I can’t wait to start!!

5. I kind of really want these socks to run a race in! Even though people will think I’m crazy, I’ll know they’ll secretly be jealous.

6. Sugar Cookie Dough Cashew Butter Cups. Yum.

7. iPad 3 rumors/invitation. All I’ve got to say is that this better be true. I’ve been waiting over 6 months for it to finally be announced and it would be so disappointing if it’s something else!

8. I finally signed up for two workshops at my aforementioned yoga studio! A master’s class + handstand workshop this month. I can’t wait!

9. My second ever business trip is next week – it came up so fast! I’ll be headed to Seattle for the first time and am quite excited, even though I won’t have a ton of free time while there. Although I am really hoping I can get my 7 mile run in on either the hotel treadmill or outside on the streets of the city! I love running new places :).

10. “Shit People Say” videos. My favorites (obviously) are Shit Foodies Say and Shit Yogis Say. Soo funny and kind of sad that they’re mostly true :).

things that make me smile part 2

I did a “things that make me smile” post a few months back, and I figured it was about time for a new one! I always like to look back and see how my tastes/preferences change unintentionally!

1. Coffee is still HIGH on the list ;). These days it’s hot coffee, in my Mickey mug from Disney and with Aerolatte-frothed milk. Mmmm.

2. Pinterest. Except when people refer to it as “pin-interest”. Where’s the extra “in” coming from?! I did the workout in the below right hand corner of the screen last night and it was a great little cross training session!

3. My new shoesZappos would also be on the list since they surprisingly gave me free 2 day shipping and they were waiting for me on the front porch when I got home! I’m ready to tackle my run tomorrow morning with them ;).

4. Spending $60 to get private port-o-johns and close-up parking (for two people). Oh the things runners do on race day :). I saw the Platinum Package for the Nashville Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathon and figured it would save a bunch of anxiety to get it. Come race day, I’m know we’ll be happy!

This package includes:

  • Guaranteed Parking at LP Field
  • Private Shuttle to the Start Line
  • Access to the Platinum Tent in the Start Line Village
  • Catered pre-race refreshments
  • Private Gear Check
  • Private Port-o-Johns

5. Yoga Body Bootcamp. Still LOVING going to this class every week! It’s always challenging and I always leave it as a sweaty mess.

6. Desserts from Outpost. Outpost is a local coop in Milwaukee… and they have freshly baked gluten free desserts in their bakery! My favorites are the zucchini cupcake with the most delicious cream cheese frosting (pictured below) and their individual pound cakes. So good, and a fantastic treat that we can actually eat and doesn’t have to be baked at home! Their carrot cake birthday cakes are absolutely delicious as well!

7. The Hunger Games Movie! I first read these books last summer after getting a recommendation from a friend and was hooked! I read all three books back to back and recently read through them all again. I’m glad there’s only a little more than a month until the movie comes out! I’ll hopefully be seeing this within the first week it’s in theaters :). I’m also slightly obsessed with the song Safe and Sound by Taylor Swift. Totally didn’t know it was from the Hunger Games soundtrack when I first heard it.

8. Grain-free Bran Muffins from Elena’s Pantry (photo and recipe are from her blog!). Sister just put a batch of these in the oven and they look delicious. I can’t wait to try one because they smell absolutely heavenly!

Well, I think eight random ramblings are plenty for one night ;).

What things are you all enjoying lately?

wiaw revisited

Wow, it’s extremely hard to believe that I haven’t participated in a WIAW since August 10th. What the heck happened? Well, I’m back for the day but not with nearly as nice of pictures to go along with it! Next week will be better!

I wrote way back then that I was in the middle of my third week of working… I’m now coming up on 6 whole months. Crazy, right? I was really busy at work today. Well it’s actually been crazy ever since I got back from the Disney 1/2 Marathon last week – I guess I deserve the busyness for skipping out of work for three (work) days right after the holidays!

I started out this morning the same as I do every day… with a tablespoon of chia mixed in V8 V-Fusion A?ai Mixed Berry  and a (couple of) cups of coffee with my current favorite mix in, chocolate milk, frothed with the Aerolatte. Mmm, I love coffee :). Drinking some chia in the morning really helps me stay hydrated throughout the day, as well as provide some additional protein + fiber for the morning! The coffee is merely a necessity at this point… I wouldn’t want to be around me without it haha.

For breakfast I ate steel-cut oats, made the easiest way ever. 1/4c steel-cut oats + 1 cup water, cooked on the stove the night before. Bring to a boil and cook for just two minutes, and then cover and let sit overnight. The next morning all you have to do is reheat! So simple and I much prefer the texture of the steel-cut oats to rolled. I mixed in some flaxseed and put a big scoop of Smucker’s Natural Chunky peanut butter on top :).

I ended up making it through the whole morning without a snack, even though I was hungry – there just wasn’t time! So I made up for it at lunch by having a salad (with a hidden scoop of hummus), some cottage cheese and Udi’s Millet-Chia Ancient Grains Bread – this is by far the best GF bread on the market!

Pretty much immediately following that I had some Snyder’s Gluten Free Pretzels and string cheese. I don’t know what it is about it, but this is one of my favorite combinations ever! Definitely brings me back to my childhood :).

A few hours later I ate this Mint Chocolate Luna Protein bar – I am more than slightly obsessed with these bars. Full of protein and they taste like a candy bar?! The Mint Chocolate flavor is definitely one of my favorites.

I left work a little later than usual, but was able to make dinner in no time! Sweet Sister put it all together the night before so all I had to do was put it in the oven to warm up and then eat! It ended up being perfect because I was able to shovel (seriously snow, you decide to snow for the first time last week, and it’s already the second downpour in 5 days?!) while it was warming up. Then I quickly ate and was off to my first massage! I ate too quickly and forgot a picture… but this is what was left after we ate – it’s a “baked ziti” dish with gluten free pasta, spaghetti squash, mushrooms, mini turkey pepperoni’s and some sliced string cheese on top. It looks a little interesting, but it was delicious and filling!

The massage was definitely my favorite thing of the day! I had never gotten one before, but Sister gifted me one for Christmas. It was so nice to be in a heated room and on a heated bed for an hour when it’s so cold and snowy outside! It was also really nice to get my muscles relaxed after the 1/2 marathon, I somehow manage never to stretch enough after running and am always tight. Massages might need to happen more in my lifetime… hmmm. And to top it all off I now smell like a coconut haha. The masseuse also had a dish of Dove Dark Chocolate Raspberry Swirl Chocolates – I had never had these before but they’re delicious! When I got home I continued to help shovel off the driveway – I guess that ended up being my workout for the day, darn snow!

Hope you all enjoyed my semi-return to WIAW – I’ll try my best to remember next week and have my food be a bit more colorful! Happy Wednesday!

snow run

Today was the first actual snowy run of the season. There was a light dusting on the ground during my first 9 mile training run, but it was hardly enough to see on the grass. This was a little more snow coverage and insane wind accompanying it, so it was not the most enjoyable run. I was scheduled to go four miles, the last definite run before 13.1 on Saturday. I have an optional 3 miles on Wednesday, but I’m thinking I will do an Insanity DVD instead. Looking back over my long runs over the past couple of months, it appears I do a lot better during the run when I have one or two Insanity’s during the week – something about the breathing and sweating so hard no run I have ever done even comes close to comparing…

That being said, I haven’t been so dedicated to Insanity over the holidays and my runs have definitely decreased in performance. We will see if it will help coupled with the excitement being in Disney will bring! I was going to do a DVD today, but I am still nursing my shoulder a little bit – loading up on Ibuprofen to decrease the swelling. It seems to be doing better, but I didn’t want to use my arms/back any more than necessary. I’m thinking a stretching/recovery insanity tomorrow and a regular one on Wednesday.

Anyways, the run this morning was so windy and cold, but I was happy to do it in the daylight! I was off of work today and slept in until 7, and then went for a run right away. Once I got back, vegging out ensued. Well, Christmas decorations were taken down and the house was cleaned first, but then I spent some quality time laying on my bed (flat on my back for my shoulder) reading a book that one of my co-workers wrote (she had me for Secret Santa and she gave me one of her books!). Even though outside was windy, cold and snowy, inside was nice and toasty and it felt like a snow day. After lunch I even baked up a half batch of the best gluten free chocolate chip cookies I have ever had – reminds me so much of Carol’s Cookies!

I really can’t believe I have only two days of work and then I’m off to Orlando! I am really excited for this trip even though it seems to have come up so fast!

2012 plans

I have never made a resolution, or had any real goals for the year ahead. Sure, two years ago I was looking forward to studying abroad in London for a semester and last year I was gearing up for my last semester at college before graduating. This year seems somewhat dull in comparison starting out, but it is also the first year in awhile that I kind of know what to expect. I have a stable job that I have no plans to leave, and no major life changes are expected. Here are a few things I am hoping to do/complete during 2012!

1. Run my first 1/2 marathon (less than a week away!)

2. Go to Disney World (another one coming very soon!)

3. Buy the iPad 3 (this NEEDS to come out this year and I will be one of the first to buy one since I have been waiting for many months)

4. Make French Macaroons

5. Stay a night in 7 states other than WI (this was going to be just go to 5 states, but I think that’s a little too easy with some of this year’s plans)

6. Drive to Nashville

7. Run my 2nd 1/2 Marathon (Nashville Rock n’ Roll)

8. Start lifting weights consistently!

9. Get a PR for a 5k

10. Run a 10k in under 1 hour

11. Get my first iPhone

12. Stop drinking soda for good… Butterbeer doesn’t count 🙂

13. This sounds weird… but I need to stop chewing ice. I have a bad habit of chewing ice in my drinks and I should really save my teeth from this… Maybe I’ll start ordering my drinks “no ice”?!

14. Start abiding by my budget and only buying things I had planned for/need (and iPad and iPhone have been planned in my mind for years… so these are exempt from this plan!)

15. Read 4 new books – not a very lofty number, but some things need to be easily attainable haha

16. Start using more features on the DSLR – usually I just turn it on and shoot…

I’m sure many more plans will end up coming up in 2012, but as of January 1st this is the list!

eleven from eleven

I thought now would be a very good time to reflect on 2011 – seems appropriate to me as it is now a New Year! Lots of exciting things happened to me this year and some not-so-fun occurrences. Here are eleven of them!

1. Went to NYC with Kinley in January. This was the first time either of us had gone to NYC and it was fun to explore a big and bustling city. I loved every minute of it (okay, not the minute that I formatted my card and lost all my pictures and then spent $40 of a software to get them back…). We saw a broadway show (American Idiot featuring Billie Joe Armstrong), ice skated at Bryant Park (one of the main reasons we went in the winter), ate more cupcakes than days we were there (from Sweet Revenge and Crumbs), had my first Macaroon from Financier Patisserie (have not had one since but I have been completely obsessed with them and wanting to find/make them), ran in Central Park (so want to do this again!), went to Times Square at night and during the day, saw the Statue of Liberty, randomly walked by Jimmy Fallon as he was getting interviewed on the Today Show and pretty much walked around the entire city in the three days we were there. It was so memorable and I can’t wait to go back and see even more!

2. Got in my first car accident. Okay so this one isn’t so great, but I am lucky it was as minor as it was. It was rainy and I was on the highway and the lady in front hit her breaks SUPER fast in her brand new car (needless to say I couldn’t stop fast enough with the wet roads). Got a couple hundred dollar ticket and a banged up front of my car to drive around with for a few months. Lesson learned…

3. Graduated. This is one of the major milestones this year. I graduated with not one, but two degrees in May. My Bachelor’s in International Business, minor in German, and an MBA with a concentration in Marketing. I spent the morning of my graduation in court dealing with the points that I got from #2 (got them all cleared away at least!), but the night was all for celebrating!

4. Two month extended vacation. During the two months between graduating and finding a job, I was spending all my newfound “free time” searching for jobs, rethinking my life choices and hanging out with Crosby having some quality nap times every afternoon (he napped, I read many books and book series including The Hunger Games). I also started blogging again to try and find some purpose in my life and do something productive. Little did I know it would stick with me even after finding a job.

5. Ran my first 10k. This was my second race, and the first one that I actually enjoyed :). I will always remember the Bellin 10k and am already signed up to do it in 2012 and break my course time! I also ran two other 10k’s – in Madison (my current PR) and in Hawaii.

6. Found a job. I couldn’t believe it when this day finally came. Looking back I am really fortunate to have found a job within two months of graduating, and even more fortunate that after five months I still love what I’m doing. I have never been bored for a single day while being there and I am looking forward to what this next year will bring me!

7. Went on my first business trip. The second week of the real job I went on my first business trip to Sonoma, California. It was an awesome and busy trip and I get to go on that same meeting/trip next year when it’s in Virginia – and I am planning almost the entire thing!

8. First Surprise Birthday Party. I had always wanted a surprise birthday party, but had never gotten one before. I was definitely not expecting one this year, but Kinley somehow surprised me with a great 23rd birthday with family and friends coming to celebrate with me!

9. Went to Hawaii. This will always remain one of the best vacations ever. Hawaii is amazing and our time spent on both Kauai and Maui was fantastic. You can find all of my daily posts here.

10. Ran 5 miles in under 50 minutes. This was an awesome experience for me. I really didn’t think I was capable of running under 10 minutes miles for this long of time, but I did it during the Festival Foods Turkey Trot! Hopefully I’ll be just as pleasantly surprised with my performance at Disney ;).

11. Ran my first double digit run. I have never been a runner so it still amazes me that I can run an entire mile without stopping. Sure, I’ve had some discouraging runs and plenty of aches and pains along the way, but I hope to keep considering myself a runner from here on out! And many more double digit runs this year!

2012 has many things in store for it as well… look for my next post to see all the things I hope to accomplish this year!