Friday, March 29, 2013

Fitness Friday...Are you part of a pack?

Lately I have been running in a pack of one...
Since I was about 7 months pregnant until now I have been running alone most of the time.  Let me tell you something about running alone...many times it is fabulous.  I have quiet time to think and listen to podcasts and no one is asking me for anything.  However there are times, which are often lately, that I am needing a pack to push me along.  After running with Jill last weekend, I know I need that pack to not only keep my mind off the hurt but to also push me.  Something about me that you may or may not know is that I don't like saying I can't do something....or even give the illusion that I can't.  I've said it before but when I first started playing soccer and had to run in a group, I used to hold my breathe so no one would know if I was sucking wind or not!  This fact worked really well for me in the past 2 years while I was running with my running group.  The fear of being left behind forced me to push the pace and as a result I was faster than I had ever been before.  This fact works against me in cases such as right now when I don't feel like I can keep up with the wolf pack!  However I know I need to push myself and get out of my comfort zone in order to reach awesome status...

What about you?  Are you a pack runner? workerouter?  Do you work better alone or in a group?  Favorite line from "The Hangover"...go!

Monday, March 25, 2013

What's in your Fitness Closet??

Fellow Fitfluential Ambassador and amazing runner Brian at Pavement Runner...did I mention he just PRd at the Oakland Marathon...challenged us to open up our closets and show some of our gear!  Well my closet is such a hot mess so you are only going to get a tiny peak at my shoes, shirts, and hats! 
It should be no surprise that my shoes are all things Saucony...they are so good to my feet and have kept me hitting the road for 15 years now!  There's no going back! I've donated quite a few pairs so these 5 are still hanging out!  I try to donate a pair every time I buy one.
Shirts are my weakness....I keep just about all my race shirts good or not!  I would say I'm a huge fan of UnderArmour and Nike shirts...they're super comfy and well yes they come in awesome colors and have fun sayings!
And since you all rock and apparently I had a lot to say....I made a vlog just for you all!!!  Em decided to join me and it took a few takes since she also wanted to add her two cents every minute!

Head on over to Pavement Runner to check out other FFAs and their closets!!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Fitness Friday...Gym Must Haves

Well over the summer I claimed my independence from the gym.  I said I didn't need a membership to get into shape and I know that that is still true.  Many people have amazing results from working out in their own home.  Yesterday however I realized a few things about myself....
  • I LIKE going to the gym...walking in the door, going to classes, using a variety of weights and machines, talking with others(I met my husband at the gym-technically we had known each other for years but we were reunited at the gym where he saw me flexing and knew he couldn't live without me:-))
  • I am a gym girl...yes I am a runner first...but I love the classes (spin, body pump, etc)
  • Lifting heavy weights in front of a huge mirror makes me feel very bada$$...I kid about the mirror part!
  • This is not going to happen any time soon:
 My current gym can best be described as the latest episode of Jersey Shore at night...
which would be great if I were in my early 20s and wanted to spend my precious gym time texting my friends and flirting but well...
Sooo yesterday I headed over to a different gym to check it out and see if I thought it would be a better fit for me....and walked out with a shiny new gym membership!  Ha!  The gym really does have what I'm looking for/need.  It's an all women's gym which is something that I didn't need but the features of the gym fit.  They have some great classes which is really what I was looking for.  I'm looking forward to getting back to spinning and taking a Team class which can be best described as CrossFit meets athlete training.  Who knows...all I know is that I saw TRX bands, AstroTurf, Kettlebells, and punching bags and I was in love! 

Now I'm always a runner at heart....and even though my hubby went there and said something runners never want to hear "What if the trainer tells you you need to run less?"...I know in order to change my body shape right now I need to mix it up.  When I had Em I was whipped into shape that way...I logged 1500 miles but I also did and LOVED bootcamp classes and other HIIT classes.  I'm looking forward to changing things up and seeing results!

What do you look for in a gym? 

Thursday, March 21, 2013


What's that?  It's Thursday already?  Well then that means it time for another random...
Foodie Friends...I am so thankful I opened up about Em and her eating.  Thank you so much for all your awesome advice and support!!  I have so many ideas that I am going to try out!  She loves to help me cook in the kitchen but I think that a few of the things I make I am going to have to do alone so I can sneak in some goodies!  My hubs spoke with the teacher yesterday and they did a little damage control.  We also let her pick out her dinner which she not only ate all of but there was no battle which was what I wanted to avoid.  Plus it was pretty healthy!!!  Thank you again for all your support!!

Time for Change...For whatever reason Easter time brings in me a desire to change my hair...could be the Spring is finally here (well according to the calendar) and I'm ready to be done with Winter or just ready for a change.  Now let me say that I have the DESIRE for a change but I have had relatively the same haircut and color since I was in high school...yes my friends high school!!!  I did cut all my hair off once when I was in college going from Rapunzel to a Meg Ryan look alike (something about a boy...and a breakup...we all make dumb decisions).  Hubs knew me then and said some not too flattering things about my very short tresses basically ending with "Don't do that again!"  I am going to get my hair cut next Friday and I'm facing a few issues that I need to address.  First up is that my hair is falling out at an alarming rate (heads up to all you pregnant falls out!)  Fortunately I have ridiculously thick hair to begin with so it isn't too bad but it is getting a little ragged.  Second issue at hand is that I am now 34...ugh... and well my once dark brown hair is showing it's age (i.e. white hairs are no longer blending in with my blonde highlights).  So yeah I'm thinking about maybe a change in color too!  For a cut I was thinking a lob...aka the long bob circa Rachel McAdams (Does Ryan Gosling come with the haircut?)
I need a little length since I want to still be able to pull it back and because my hair is so curly that when you cut it short it recoils like nothing I've ever poodle do for me thanks!  We shall see though...

Pumping Iron...No I'm not talking my hubby's favorite movie:
I'm talking getting my -ish together and hitting the weights.  Now that my half marathon is in the bank my next half is in May (I have a 10k and 10 miler in April) and I have some very specific goals for that.  Being that that race is on Memorial Day aka the unofficial start of summer, I am going to want to be ready to flash my guns!
 Beautiful baby has left me well....for the lack of better more flattering term...giggly.  The plan is being formed and the iron is going to be pumped!!!  What's your favorite body part to train?  For me it's legs and shoulders.  I feel like I can beat up my legs pretty good and I can lift crazy weight with them! (Thank you 13 years of being a catcher in softball!)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What She WON"T Eat Wednesday

I could title this post a number of things like...Desperate Diner or Nutty about Nutrition or maybe even Toddler Tantrums but instead I am reaching out to all of you.  A desperate mom who just wants her daughter to be healthy.

Meet Em:
Our beautiful, funny, caring, wicked smart, toddler who up until last week could be categorized as your average picky eater.  Yes she would refuse to even try most foods but she had her set of foods that she would accept on her plate and I worked my hardest to make those foods the healthiest I could.  Until last week...

A very well-meaning mom, who is also a nutritionist, came to her class to talk about nutrition.  She did activities with them about what foods were healthy and what foods were treats and why it was important to eat healthy foods.  She obviously used words like "nutritious" and "protein" since those are some of the words being fired back at me!  Her lesson I'm sure was very well planned and for the average child was a great time learning about foods...but for our picky eater it was the fuel to cut out even more foods from her VERY limited approved list. 

Which leads us to today and my real concern for her.  The foods she cut out of her diet yes were not healthy foods (grilled cheese, chicken nuggets, pizza, and waffles) but I made sure that those foods were all organic, packed with as many nutrients as I could so that I could be sure she was getting what she needed.  The past 4 nights have been a battle that has resulted in her eating a handful of carrots or apple sauce and being done.  My concern is not only in if she is getting the proper nutrition (she only gets about 10g of protein a day and very little of anything else) but also this behavior around food.  She'll even ask for foods (smoothies or peanut butter and jelly) which I gladly make for her and when it is on her plate she says it isn't nutritious enough and she can't eat it.  I am at a makes me very sad and as much as my husband says it is nothing to do with anything we did I can't help but feel responsible. 

Any advice? Has anyone dealt with a picky eater who uses nutrition facts as a justification NOT to eat?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

New Bedford Half Marathon

Well no pr to proclaim...but a lot of pride in myself...a lot of reminding myself of where I have been and where I have yet to go!!  This St. Paddy's Day instead of hitting the streets in Southie, I hit the streets in New Bedford for my 4th running of New Bedford Half Marathon.  I wasn't sure how the weather would be (yes I watched the weather reports but you know this is New England and a lot of the course is along the water which equals cold wind) so I set out my clothes and hoped I would be warm enough!
Under Armour capris
Reebok Skirt
Old Navy vest
Target socks
Active Band headband (ending up wearing my Bondi Band Ponytail hat)
The day started off pretty normal and continued that way since this race didn't start until 11am!  You know how I feel about late good!  I would rather get up and get it done like I am with my long runs.  Waiting around really just made me more and more nervous.  I have run many half marathons (this was my 20th!!!) and I have run this particular race now 4 times but for whatever reason I ALWAYS get over-the-top nervous for this one.  Maybe it's the hills (I'll get into that later) or maybe it is just that the race means more the more you put into it!  Either way I was up with the ladies and spent the morning with them trying to keep my mind off the race ahead!  Before I knew it it was time to suit up and head out the door to meet up with Jill in New Bedford.
We also ran this for Jill's St Patrick's Day Virtual

After getting our numbers and finding a warm spot to stand we waited around a bit before the start.  Quickly it was time to head to the start and go!  There were about 3000 runners and the starting line quickly filled with people trying to stay warm!  Before I knew it we were counting down to the start and off we went!

Now while I normally would take off like a dart at the start, this race was all about covering the distance and not stopping...ever!  The first 3 miles went smoothly but I still had the thought of those first 3...yes 3 all at once...hills.  I remember turning to Jill and saying "Here we go!"  I pushed...and pushed up those hills.  I fought back the thoughts of stopping and I made it to the top of the last hill knowing the course was evening off. 

I have to say miles 4-10 really went so quickly!  I'm so thankful to have had Jill there with me!  She was with me on my first race back after having Emma and she was LITERALLY pulling me faster over the finish line for this race back!  There is just something I miss so much about running with my the miles and time can just fly by in a blink while we catch up on life and laugh with each other!  Our favorite sign was by far the one that said, "Smile if you peed a little on that last hill"!  With this being my first big race back after having a baby 5 months ago I LOVED this! 

Miles 10-13 were tough...mentally and physically mostly mile 12.  We ran along the water for miles 10-11 and the wind was blowing right in our the make my eyes water wind.  I just kept my head down, turned on my music in one ear, and jammed out to the Harlem Shake until I saw arch nemesis...the big, giant, stupid hill at mile 12 (one day you will be mine hill!!!).  I put my head down and just plowed on smiling at Jill from time to time to let her know I was still trucking!  I knew reaching the top meant a quick downhill to the finish (yes that hill IS that long).  We hit the downhill and I let my legs go...rounding the corner I knew I had done it!  I did it...I blew past my limits and smiled the whole way!!  Jill grabbed my hand and pulled me even faster over the finish line!!
Not my fastest time here (1:52:12) but not my slowest here (2:34:05).  I met two of my goals....I didn't stop and I was under 2:30.  Next race I'm shattering that time....totally shattering it!!!  I'm getting it back and I'm hungry for speed!  Thank you so much for your support here and on Facebook and Instagram! It means so much!!!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Monday Motivation

Going into this race this weekend I thought I knew my limits...walk up the hills (the never ending hills) and get to the finish line in one piece.  Well I made it over the first hill...then the second...then the third...and saw the peak of the killer hill at mile 12.  I pushed my limits and they crumbled!!  What limits have you put on yourself lately?  Push back....and smile as they back right down!!  This week find one limit you have put on yourself that you are going to push right down!!!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fitness Friday...Race Day Goals and Chi-town Sweepstakes

So the day is almost upon first big race...I mean big race since I had Aubrey.  In December I did race in a Jingle Bell 5k but I gladly ran with my 8 year-old niece while pushing my bossy 4 year-old (She is going to make a great coach some day!)  And let's be real....I raced wearing a giant tutu!  Let me refresh your memory....
So Sunday is the big dance...the one I have been training for since I was given the green light to ease into exercising again (oh bless my doctor's heart to think I eased into it!).

I'm trying to be very realistic with this race.  I am not giving myself excuses not to do well but I have to be kind to myself.  I ran through my pregnancy but had to STOP after and recover 8 weeks from a C-section.  This has given me 3 months to shed some baby weight and get my legs and lungs to play nice!  I'm getting there and honestly am very proud of myself for stepping up to the start line!  I'm also taking into consideration that I have strep throat, a kind gift that either my daughter or students so thoughtfully gave to me!  There all the excuses are out and here are my goals (It's been a LONG time since I've done this!)
  1. To not stop/die on the course!  Yeah I guess I'm shooting low on this one!  Considering it will be St. Paddy's Day and I'm running with my BRF Jill, I think this won't happen.  If I start to teeter I can always grab a green beer and go!
  2. Finish in under 2:30.  I went back and looked at my previous finishing times for this race (this is going to be the 4th time I've run it and my 20th half marathon).  My worst time was 2:35 back in 2007 when I ran it as a training run for Boston.  My best time was 1:52 which was a pr for me.  Last year I ran it 4 months pregnant and got just over 2 hours.  The course is HILLY especially with a mountain at mile 12 (only a slight exaggeration!).  I can do this!
  3. Finish in under 2:10.  This would make me super happy!  Just finishing will make me super happy too but hitting this goal will make me feel like I have less of a hole to climb out of to get back my speed!
The day is looking great!  Here is the weather report for Sunday...

SunMar 17

Partly Cloudy
Partly Cloudy
Chance of rain: 10%
Wind: WSW at 9 mph 
  • 40 I can do...partly sunny I can do...Wind only 9mh I can do....I can do this!!!!
    Half marathon #20 here I come!!! 
  • In other exciting news I was chosen again this year to be a ZOOMA Cape Cod Ambassador.  I am beyond excited to be a part of this race series again this year and to kick it off I am passing onto you all an amazing sweepstakes that they have going on right now.  
    The Muscle Milk Light ZOOMA Women’s Race Series is calling all women runners to Run to Chi-Town for a fit girlfriends’ getaway this summer, and will award the grand-prize winner of a national sweepstakes an all-expenses paid trip for two to Chicago on August 9-10 for the inaugural ZOOMA Chicago Women’s Half Marathon & 10K, including luxury accommodations at The Langham Chicago, travel expenses, and a fitness-and-fashion makeover from the contest’s sponsors.  
    I mean come one people.....why are you still here reading?  Go NOW and enter to win!   

    Thursday, March 14, 2013


    So much randomness so little time!  Enjoy this week's dose of just a glimpse of what goes through my mind each day!  You're welcome!

    Germs...This week each and every member of my family was sick.  Thankfully they only had colds and not the dreaded norovirus(that would have sent me over the edge!) but colds are just enough to make others miserable.  Poor hubs landed himself an ear infection, Aubrey scored pink eye (like she doesn't have enough trouble with her eyes!) and Em (I'm blaming her germy buddies at school) just had your average cold.  With a half marathon (my first long race since Aubrey was born) looming on Sunday I was fighting the good fight...drinking a lot of this:
    and chasing everyone around with Lysol and opening windows!  I'm still not done fighting but let's just say I'm not feeling 100%.  Grrrrrrrr!

    Spring...One thing that we are all so ready for is the weather to get warmer.  This past weekend the girls and I went for a drive (to air them out and let Dad rest and watch Tiger).  We drove past all of our beaches while Em shouted "See you soon!"  She comes home each day and wants to put on a summer dress.  She never wears a coat....yeah we're ready for Spring!  However, one thing about living in New England is that Spring last for about a hot minute.  March and April are rainy and cool then when your not looking it gets warmer and boom it's Summer!  Makes for fun running since you never know how to dress!

    Biggest Loser...What is it about this show that has me balling my eyes out?  This week they showed the contestants videos that they made on their first day to demonstrate how far they have come....good gravy get out the Kleenex!!  Poor Hubs had to watch all 2 hours of it but it was just so amazing not only how much they have changed  physically but emotionally as well!  Am I the only one here?  I just love watching people prove themselves wrong and reach goals they never knew they could!  So awesome!

    Thursday, March 7, 2013


    Wow has this week flown by!  I was at a conference about 2 hours from home for Monday and Tuesday and it has seriously made me fell like I am struggling to catch the week before it ends!  Right now the wind is HOWLING outside but at least there is no snow falling.  So....
    hang on and enjoy this week's three randoms!

    Paleo Progress....As I mentioned last week, I joined in on a Paleo 30 Day Challenge at work.  I really like the way that I feel eating this way.  I feel much lighter and the scale is showing it too...I lost 4lbs last week!  Other than that I really feel like this is a way of eating that I can continue even beyond the 30 days.  The only struggle I continue to have is what to eat before the long run.  This week I ate a banana and almond butter but about half way through the run I felt the gas gague hit empty...I'll try again this weekend!

    Weather Woes...March is that funky month where Spring is knocking on the door but Winter is not ready to give up the fight.  I feel like the weather people keep swearing at me every time they say that 4-letter know what it is...s-n-o-w.  I think I can speak for many New Englanders when I say...."I'm ready for Spring!"  While I'm thankful that this storm is bringing us buckets of rain and whipping winds, I'm all set with this weather!

    Virtual Love...No I don't mean the Catfish kind, I mean the virtual race kind!  There are three races coming up that I wanted to give you a heads up on!  Ali Mc, Jill, and Jess are all hosting virtual races this month so click away and sign yourself up!  They all have awesome prizes and Ali Mc even has a super fun photo contest!!

    Monday, March 4, 2013

    Monday Motivation

    Are your muscles sore...lungs tired...feeling sleepy?  Don't stop now!!!  This weekend's long run was my longest yet since I was pregnant with wasn't pretty.  I ran out of gas in the tank...eyed short cuts that would take me home and cut my mileage...but I DID NOT STOP!  Was I suffering?  Yes but I knew if I quit then I would not get to my goal....I would not be a champion! Whatever you are feeling...don't quit!  You WILL get there!!

    Friday, March 1, 2013

    Fitness Friday...What a Difference a Week Makes

    Last week I posted about hitting the reset button...about realizing that vacation week, even though we didn't go away anywhere, was a deviation from the norm and thus my workouts were too.  I started this week with a fresh outlook and decided to redo Week 7 of the Best Body Bootcamp.  I'm so thankful I did that because this week has been great!  I've hit my workouts both cardio and weights and I feel much better about the week!  Am I sore?  Oh yes but it is one of those good sores...the ones you have after a great workout!
    I'm ready to take on next week and end this bootcamp on a high note! 

    Do you ever hit reset on your workouts?  How did your week go?  Any victories?  Any struggles?