Things I’m loving lately…

I haven’t really talked about some of my favorite things before, but I wanted to touch base and share a few new things that I’ve been really loving lately.

 

green superfood

  1.  Green Superfood– I’ve had this for a while and only started regularly drinking it.  It’s full of green super foods that are just supposed to help you achieve the recommended serving of fruits and vegetables.  I *try* to eat pretty healthy during the week, but I sometimes I seriously lack energy.  I read some reviews in which people said it helped with that and I decided to give it a shot and drink a scoop a day.  I mix it with water and just chug it.  The taste isn’t pleasant, but it’s not unbearable and you get used to it.   Honestly, after two weeks of regularly drinking it, I do think it has helped with my energy level.  I’m able to wake up and and do my earlier workouts more often and that 3PM dip in energy hasn’t been that bad.  I recommend the lemon lime flavor. bodyshred
  2. Jillian Michael’s Bodyshred–  I was the biggest fan of P90X a few years ago and was able to get really good results.  Unfortunately, once I moved to the east coast and began commuting a total of 3 hours to and from NYC for work, working out 60-90 minutes every day just wasn’t as realistic.   I wanted to find an actual program (with a calendar) that was around 30 minutes a day.  I have a few other Jillian Michael’s videos that I thought were challenging and I enjoyed which lead me to find this one.  After reading the reviews on this I decided to go for it and order it!  I’m only a week into it, but let me tell you, it will definitely make you sweat.  Even though it’s a little more than 30 minutes, it’s ALL working out… no breaks here.  I’m excited to continue this and see  how it goes!                                                                                                                                            girl on the train
  3. Girl on the Train (trailer)- I read this book a few months ago and LOVED it.  It was the kind of book that sucks you in and you finish it in 2 days because you can’t stop reading it.  Well, the full trailer just came out and it looks just as good!  For once, I’m hoping the movie actually does the book justice.  I would have never pictured Emily Blunt as the main character, but I’m really feelin her in the trailer.  Have you read this book?image
  4. Colourpop lipstick–  I was introduced to this brand a few months ago when my friend bought me some of their makeup for my birthday.  Let me just tell you, these lipsticks (especially the ultra satin & ultra matte) are amazing.  They’re cruelty free, not tested on animals, and only $6!! Yes you heard that right, only six buckeroos.  My favorite colors are in order (pictures below): Dopey, Mess Around, Scrooge (shown on me above), and Toolips.  These are long lasting and very smooth.  Also,  if you sign up you receive $5 off your first order.

Half Marathon & Updates

Hi All!  Wow, it feels like it’s been so long since I’ve written a post.  Last weekend the day finally came… I ran my half marathon!  I was so nervous the week before because my training schedule was really sporadic.  Between winter and busy weekends I really didn’t run as much as I wanted to.  I didn’t feel very prepared and set a very loose goal for myself of 2:30.

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The marathon was about an hour south from me and started at 8:30 am.  Luckily, we had great weather.  I was so nervous before we started, I must have went to the bathroom a million times haha.   The adrenaline definitely kicked in right as we started…

The run itself started out great; I felt good and was able to pace myself and breathe right.  It was so nice running with the ocean view and not to mention all of the large beach houses. Around mile 9 the pain started kicking in.  My back and hip both started hurting.  I pushed through it and did walk a little bit.  It was hard, like really hard, but I tried to run almost all of it and ended up finishing about a minute before my goal.   I think running 13.1 miles is one of the toughest things I’ve accomplished.

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Over 4,000 people registered

After it was over it was a huuuuuge weight lifted off my shoulders.  Months of mentally (and physically) preparing was finally done.  Before running it, I thought I might want to sign up for more, but after actually doing it I’m not so sure.   After the run was over, I was ready to celebrate… Don’t judge me. 😉

Yes, burgers and beer!  We went to lunch and scarfed down.  Then I went home to sleep… I was so tired and definitely had a weird limp going on after.   The rest of the weekend I really just spent relaxing and eating!

Later that week, Brian and I ended up going to a Yankees game!  My boss got free tickets from one of our vendors and luckily we were both able to attend.

Again, we got lucky with some really nice weather!  Dare I say summer is almost here? Even though the Yankees lost, we still had a fun night and got to enjoy the game from pretty good seats.

I hope everyone is having a good week!  We are getting ready to prepare for our trip to Chicago, which I will be writing about of course. 🙂

Sweet tooth?

It’s almost Friday!  This week has been pretty cold/gloomy, but luckily it’s going by quickly.

I try to eat relatively healthy, especially during the week.  Lately for lunches I’ve been making my salad at home which includes: spring mix, spinach, carrots, broccoli slaw, turkey patty, and a mix of hummus/cottage cheese instead of dressing.  It’s actually pretty yummy!

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Daily lunch

I do, however, have a really big sweet tooth!  Because of this, I don’t like to bake too much because I’m worried I’ll end up eating too much… I’m sure this happens to everyone right? 😉

Lately, I’ve been on quite a bit of a baking kick because I’ve had the chance to share it with other people.  Over Easter weekend, I made this three layer Hummingbird cake which was a huge hit!  It has pineapple, banana, pecans, and a cream cheese frosting.  Isn’t she pretty?! Everyone LOVED this cake and it was relatively simple to make.

 

A week later I decided to continue my baking and make cupcakes.  I think my favorite thing to make is cupcakes because you can get pretty unique with the flavors/frosting combo.  I also think it’s easier to control the amount you eat with cupcakes.  This time, I ended up just making a basic vanilla cupcake with chocolate frosting.  I was bringing them into work and didn’t want to get too crazy with the flavors.  These tasted like sugar cookies in the form of a cupcake!  I wanted a bold chocolate-y flavor so I ended up adding more coco to the frosting.. can’t go wrong with more chocolate.

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Yes I  used my fancy piping set 🙂

While I was at the store buying my cupcake ingredients, I decided to just go all in and buy a few additional ingredients and make blueberry muffins.  I’ve made these a few times and knew how delicious they were.   These were yummy but they could have turned out better.  I didn’t properly measure the crumble topping (I already had the cinnamon and sugar combined from a past recipe) so it wasn’t too “crumbly”.   With these, you can really control the level of sweetness based on how much crumble you use.  The muffins themselves aren’t super sweet, so if you like them really sweet just add a lot of crumble on top.

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Is your mouth watering yet?  While I was scrolling through my pics I found a doozy!  Now I didn’t make this, but I just had to post a picture because of how spectacular it is.  Well really, I had to post it twice because it’s in my cover photo as well. Let me introduce you to a Piecaken.  NYC is always coming out with the next biggest craze, and when we saw this we just had to order it for an office party.  This is a three layer dessert which consists of 3 types of pie stuffed into a cake!  Seriously one of the best desserts I’ve ever had.

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Pound cake with pecan pie, pumpkin pie, apple turnover, and cinnamon buttercream

Are you craving sweets yet? I hope this post doesn’t send you straight to the dessert aisle! 😉

I’m not a runner…

… But here I find myself one month away from running a half marathon.

It all started last Thanksgiving. I signed Brian and I up for a 5k turkey trot because I wanted us to do something active before eating all day. I had run a 10k a few years back, but he had never run any type of race before. This seemed like something different for us to do together.

Needless to say, we had a really great time together! I was surprised by how well we did and man, nothing beats that runners high!

After that, I wanted to continue running and challenging myself. I’m relatively active and try to workout regularly. I didn’t really train for the 5k, except a few brief runs on the treadmill.  I researched half marathons in the area and decided on Runapalooza in Asbury Park, NJ.  It was 4 months away and that would give me enough time to train.

Thankfully, my good friend Lisa decided to sign up with me and we’ve been running together every Saturday. It’s so much easier and more fun when you do it with a friend! Slowly but surely, we’ve increased our distance. The park we run at has mile markers which makes gaging our distance easier. I also use the app, map my run, to track my distance/pace.  Here is a few pictures of where we run.  It’s so great when you have a running buddy to share accomplishments with!

As of this morning, we are up to 8+ miles

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Just training for the marathon has inspired me to be more active. Even when I’m not running, I’m trying to increase my walking distance. Brian and I walked 15+ miles!

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If you’re thinking about training for any type of race, here are some tips I recommend. I’m not a trainer, but these are just things that have worked for me.

  1. Research what race you’d like to do. Make sure you review the map and see if it’s flat or has hills. Also, make sure you have enough time to train- you want to be able to get through it. Lastly, keep in mind what the weather will be like not only during your race, but also during training. I signed up for one in spring, but sticking to my training schedule during winter has been challenging.
  2. Find a training schedule online that will help you reach your goals. It’s also good to run with a friend, or a running club to keep you accountable. Or, you can download a running app to track your progress/share with friends.
  3. Hydrate hydrate hydrate before every run! And I don’t mean just drink a glass of water. I try to drink three large bottles of water within the hour before my run. I have found that this significantly improves my performance.
  4. Eat about 30 min to an hour before you run, especially in the morning. I’m never hungry in the morning but I force myself to eat at least a banana before my runs. Find out which foods work best for you. I used to eat oatmeal but found a banana with peanut butter actually fuels me better.
  5. This may sound gross, but go to the bathroom ( number 1 & 2) before you go running. About 80% of runners experience stomach discomfort while they run.  Trust me, needing to go to the bathroom during the run is the worst.  Not only does it mess up your rhythm, but depending on where you are you may not even have access to a bathroom.
  6. Lastly, force yourself to breathe properly and pace yourself. Really concentrate on breathing in through your nose, and out through your moth. This is challenging in cold weather but if you continue to do this throughout your run you will be able to go further.

The biggest challenge I’ve come across is trying to stick to my training schedule. Based on the schedule, I should be running 4-5 times a week. Due to winter, and not wanting to work out after work, I’ve been running about 1-2 times a week. I still do my regular workouts in the mornings, but struggle to run long distances at night. Luckily, this has been okay for me. I’ve still been able to consistently increase my distance.

The half marathon is only one month away, wish me luck! I’ll definitely be doing a whole post about that when the time comes. 😀