Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Fancy 2013!

It is really hard for me to believe that today is the last day of 2013!!  This year brought so many blessings and challenges as we went from a family of 3 to an active family of 4!  We dealt with our successes and struggles from running to a hubby's knee repairing.  To try to put it all into words would be impossible...so here are some picture highlights from this past year!  It was a year of celebrations, new products, memorials, challenges, and a bonding of an amazing community of runners to rise up!  Happy New Year to you all and thank you as always for following and encouraging me on this journey!!  2014 is going to be AWESOME!!!

Year end total...1212 miles!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Monday Motivation

Looking back over this year and the goals I set for myself, I really do have to appreciate how far that I have come.  No I didn't hit all my goals...however I did drop all but 5lbs of my pregnancy weight...and cut 13 minutes off my post baby half marathon time...and am stronger from digging myself out once again from pregnancy.  I tried hard...my hardest I could most days...and I know coming year I will do the same constantly striving to be the best version of myself!!  These last days of 2013 I need to be proud of my hard work I put in. 
How are you looking back on 2013?  
Before you look ahead to 2014...take pride in the journey you are on!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

Wishing you all a very merry Christmas from the Fancy Nancy family!!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Monday Motivation

The past few weeks, after some disagreements with coworkers, I have been wondering if we made the right leap of faith...leaving a job I cherished working with refugees.  Some of my current students were making decisions that were not helping their cause either!  However, a big part of faith is that you do NOT see, you just go.  Not that God needs to explain himself but He gave me some gifts this past week that confirmed my job!  It started with a former coworker emailing me and telling me of this fabulous high schooler she has that was chosen to represent her high school and the state.  Well while talking with her this fabulous student attributed her success with me...her third grade teacher...9 years ago!  This girl who was a refugee from the Sudan who spoke just about no English at all was excelling and remembering her first year in the US!  I cried...as an elementary teacher it is rare you see them past 4th grade...this was amazing for me!  I'm so proud of her!!!  Then on Friday my current high schoolers chose myself and my co-teacher as the Pay-it-Forward award winners.  Apparently constantly telling them that they can do more sank in!!  You never know who is watching or what lives you will touch along your journey.  Use your life wisely....and write it in a way that inspires!!

Friday, December 20, 2013

A Day in the Life of Fancy Nancy

I'm joining up with Angela at Happy Fit Mama and Jill at Fitness, Health, and Happiness for another day-in-the-life post. 

I did it once before in September and it was really fun to see how everyone spends their time.  I decided to take my pictures yesterday so you are getting a glimpse of my average Thursday!
This is when I roll out of bed...even though the alarm goes off at 4am!  How could you not laugh when you see this lock screen!  Today I knew I was going to the gym at night so it was a quick run downstairs in the basement while I did a load of laundry.  Workout done...Emma breakfast...and in the shower by 6am and on the road with Green Monster in hand by 6:40!
Waking early has its benefits...sun rising over the beach near my school where I work!  The next 6 hours is spent working in this office...
or hugging my knees in 2nd and 3rd grade chairs as I teach in the high school and elementary school.  Switching schools and being on the go all day makes the day fly by and before I know it it is time to head out to pick up the ladies!
Aubs wasn't too impressed with the snow...her sister could have stayed out there for hours!!  She's all me...I love playing in the snow!  Dinner is made...Dad comes in the door to quite the reception...and I'm off to meet my friends at the gym for our Thursday night KB session!
Let me tell you...yesterday I upped my weights and it seriously was a butt kicker!!  I really love running but I love how strong weights make me feel...and these KB are included.  Our nights include me making lunches for the next day and honestly plopping down to watch a show that I usually fall asleep during (thank goodness for DVR or I would never watch a thing!)  Hubby usually gets me to bed by 10 so that I can rest up and do it all again!!  Nothing glamorous or fancy...just the life I love....well I would love a little more with a few extra hours!  Weekend mornings aren't as early but with two little ones who has time to sleep?!
Are you an early bird or night owl?

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Just Like That...

And just like that, my baby girl is 5 years old...a whole hand...and I know that the day will come when I will no longer be able to count her years on my hands...and toes...but on this day I want to freeze time just like this.  I know that trying to put into words how much I love this little girl (or big girl as she would say) would fall short of how I'm actually feeling....and how saying that this one life changed mine forever in ways I never knew possible would really put more on her tiny shoulders than was fair.  All I know is my life, and the lives of all that know her, is better and always will be having her in it.  Though the road ahead is unknown, I just know she is destined to be great...to change things...to lead with love and leave things better!  Happy birthday to our loving, strong, silly, smart, amazing little girl!! May you always know the arms of love that wrap around you daily!!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Monday Motivation

This weekend I accepted a challenge with HBBC....a challenge to not succumb to the usual weekend falling off the wagon...a challenge I needed to accept...however I failed.  Two birthday parties had me reaching for chips and eating cake.  This morning I am waking up feeling bloated, defeated, and guilty.  However this quote is what I need right now....we are not defined by our falls but how well we rise after.  I'm taking it one day at a time starting today...water in hand and veggies in the fridge.
How do you rise after a fall?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Five for Friday

Well since you did not get three things yesterday I am upping the stakes today to five!!  You're welcome!  If any of you follow on Bloglovin' you would have noticed that I posted something on accident....I'm blaming the fact that I have 9 gazillion things to do between now and tomorrow!

#1....Em's kid party is tomorrow...thus the 9 gazillion things!  We are having an art/fairy party at a local conservatory tomorrow and then a family party the following day!  I really do love planning parties and tonight I'm getting my Martha Stewart on with making personalized art smocks, a fairy cake, and these bad boys
just to name a few!  I also need to stock up at the party store too on my way home!!  Em is of course over the moon excited....and I somehow don't understand how 5 years have gone by so quickly!!!

#2...Today's Elf4Health challenge is to run/walk a mile as fast as you can.  I am planning on doing this in the basement on the mill.  Hopefully I won't go flying off the treadmill into the wall!!
I have never timed myself in the mile...well not since middle school when I ate full bags of chips for fun...so I am interested to see how fast I can do it.  A Kenyan I am not but it should be fun!  What's the fastest you ever ran a mile?

#3...Cold has settled in on our seaside town and I have a feeling it is here to stay! While it isn't as cold as some places across the country (thank goodness) it's still wicked cold here and I know that in just a few weeks, these temps will feel warm!  Time to break out the winter tights, gloves, hat, and badass running attitude because here comes winter running!!!  I was laughing to myself yesterday as I sprinted from the car to the front door thinking...you better suck it up buttercup because you're going to be spending hours in this cold! 

#4...Running hiatus...Unintentionally I have really cut back on my miles run this month.  Call it slacking...call it a much needed break...call it being too busy...I'm calling it an affair!  I have been still working out a lot even though my miles are showing it!  I have been in love with kettlebells in case you haven't noticed with my Facebook and Instagram pics!  Don't tell running but I really am liking all this strength training and HIIT training!  I plan to start back up training in January (and continuing the weights) once I get my 2014 schedule settled, but I'm enjoying a little break from crunching numbers and paces! 

#5..So there are just a few days remaining before Christmas and I can feel the hives forming on my neck just writing that!  I know once the party is over I can get the few people that remain but oh boy!  I always wait to the last second and then I say to myself...never again!  Only to be back here again!!  This year I mean it though...I'm searching the year through so that I can be all done but the wrapping come December!!!  One thing that this part of Massachusetts has that I really like is more open air shopping than malls.  I love to be able to walk from store to store and not feel like I'm surrounded by people!  There are even fun little stores that sell more unique gifts!  How are you doing with your Christmas shopping?  What's your favorite part of this season?

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Why We Eat

I can remember growing up that my father used to always say, "I eat to live...you all live to eat." Now while he did enjoy food, and had a crazy obsession with trying to find the hottest pepper our there and then see if he could find someone to eat it, he literally ate to live.  With Crohn's Disease, food for him is often times the enemy and a meal for him has not existed for many, many years.  Each time there was something in our family, there was food.  I can remember when my grandmothers (yes both of them in the same week) passed away there was a whole tray of sandwiches that we devoured not realizing we were hungry!  Food was comfort at times.  As I got older, food for me was just the opposite.  As life got crazy, my food intake dwindled.  Instead of stress eating I avoided it as a way to control something.
As the years have gone by my relationship to food and my emotions have gone in many different directions, leading me to the last few weeks.  I always in a way prided myself as a person who did not stress eat, but the other day as I snuck another bite of the chocolate treat on our kitchen counter I realized that I was no longer that person.  Stress was taking up space in our house and I was eating...a lot.
I'm disappointed in myself for letting my stress take over my ability to make a good decision...for undoing some of the progress I had been working so hard on.  I am working on taking a step away from the sweets and thinking about why I am actually eating...am I hungry?  Am I stressed/sad/worried?  There are so many reasons people eat...to celebrate, to mourn, to hide, to treat....but I want to be eating for one reason...to nourish!  I'm getting back to my HBBC2013 clean eats and listening to Amanda's daily emails! 
Why do you eat?

As if she knew I was needing a reset, Laura from Mommy Run Fast posted about her 21-Day Post Holiday Detox Challenge that she is hosting in January.  This is perfect timing for me since it will carry me from HBBC trough January...and apparently I can't be trusted alone these days!!
This challenge is for anyone who needs either a happier gut or like me needs that guidance and boost to a better overall feeling!  Laura is offering 3 different levels of the challenge from a solo venture, to group coaching with Facebook support, to group coaching with private sessions with Laura herself!  The challenge is running from January 6th through January 25th and you can sign up here!  Laura is also running an Early Bird Special if you register before December 15th for $10 off your registration by using the code "earlybird"! (who doesn't love saving money!) 
Sooooo...Who's detoxing with me?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Acts of Kindness

From time to time my husband and I while out to dinner will pick up another table's tab...as we are walking out the door as to not draw attention.  It always feels good to bless someone else.  If you've ever been in a race, often times you will see other runners helping out each other get to the finish line.  Today our challenge with Elf 4 Health is to pay it forward...to do something nice for a stranger.  So of course I'm tossing it back to you all.  Do something nice for someone today...and ask only that they pay it forward.  You never know the ripple effect you could create with one kind act.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Monday Motivation

When someone as amazing as Nelson Mandela passes, I often wonder if we will ever see someone like that again in our lifetime...someone filled with courage and resolve to see change happen in the world.  It makes me want to do more with my days here, and challenge my students and children to do the same!  This is one of my favorite quotes of Mandela on so many levels...it always seems impossible when my students come to me that one day they'll be speaking English like their peers, but they do...it always seems impossible that we will make it through our trials until we do...the athletic task ahead seems impossible at times until I'm crossing that finish line.  This week I'm facing what I feel seems impossible in front of me...I'm facing it down and this week it will be done!
What do you have in front of you that seems impossible?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Fitness Friday...Racing Away Treadmill Boredom!

Ok when did it become Friday?  This week has flown by and let's just say I wasn't at all ready for it...good thing I get to reset and organize for next week!!  Today I'm stopping in quickly to share with you one of the ways I have been racing away treadmill boredom!  If you're anything like me, you're not brave enough to face the pitch black of the winter morning alone.  That leaves me with one of two options during the week...running group (yes I do need to get back!) and the basement treadmill!  Now while I enjoy being able to get my laundry done while ticking away the miles, day after day of running in place can get a little hairy.  Aside from magazine, new play mixes, and begging my hubby to set up the TV, I try to mix things up on the mill.  Some days I increase the speed every minute to a certain speed and then back down again, others I just plod along at a constant speed.  Once a week I try to do a speed workout and this week I did it as my 5 miler with the Mommy Run Fast virtual race series!
Here's how it went...
And after just over 40 minutes I was drenched and DONE!  I love running but boy isn't that feeling when a good speed workout is done amazing?!

How do you beat the treadmill blahs?  What's on tap this weekend?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Time to Sworkit Out!

Welcome to the holiday season...the time of year when time is like gold!!  Also if you're anything like me you have accepted every challenge that has come across your blog feed and keeping you active on top of everything else.  There are days when I get in a workout just fine and others that call for quick workouts throughout the day!  One challenge that I have gladly joined in on again this year is #Elf4Health!
We have challenges each day...today being no make-up so consider yourself warned if you see me today!! 
Part of the challenge is that you are assigned a buddy elf to encourage for two weeks.  Lucky me my first assigned elf was Ryan Hanna, developer of the Sworkit app! 
I hadn't heard of Sworkit before and was excited to check it out!  It has been perfect for me on those days when I am trying to fit in a bunch of small workouts throughout the day.  I tried it for our "new workout" challenge day and did 45 min of interval cardio!  It was great!! 
It's super simple to use too!  First you select what type of workout you are looking for:

Then how long you want to do it:
Then you're off!  When you're all done you can even synch it to My Fitness Pal or other social media sites!  A workout literally in the palm of your hand...how perfect!  Just what I need on those busy days or when I want to try something new!  Check it out for yourself and let me know!!

I'm not singing Sworkit's praises just because Ryan is my buddy elf...it actually is a great app to have!