Let’s Do the Card!

My four day break is officially ovah. Which is actually fine with me because I had a great couple days off! Friday was my 27th birthday and, as you know, Black Friday. I don’t usually go out to the stores because I prefer not to deal with those crowds and the traffic. So, instead I parked myself on the couch for a hour or two and perused the online deals.

I received some money from my dad for my birthday. I decided to use the money for a new winter coat. I can’t tell you how old my winter coat is because it’s been that long. I’m guessing maybe 5 years old (?). I checked out some different retailers and ended up purchasing this Columbia Women’s Kaleidaslope II Jacket from Amazon. It has really good reviews and looks cute/warm, so I’m hoping it fits!

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Now that I’m getting older, I usually don’t have many gifts to open for my birthday, which I am completely fine with. I prefer money to purchase things that I really want! Hubby purchased some presents for me though, which was really thoughtful.

bdaygiftsHubby got me Runner’s High 2014 Day-to-Day calendar which I love! It has quotes every day that are inspiring or funny and related to running. What could be better? He also got my a new Camelbak water bottle. I’ve been using a metal one from Walmart that has seen better days. We have a slight obsession with New Girl, so it was fitting that he got me Season 2 on DVD. We’ve pretty much watched the entire second season in a day.

For my birthday dinner, we went to a restaurant I had’nt been to in a long time, the Stone Cellar Brew Pub in Appleton. It’s a great place for beer lovers, as they brew their own beer and have many varieties to choose from. For me though, I went with a glass of White Zinfandel.

2013-11-29 17.24.28This restaurant uses local ingredients, which I’m always a fan of. They also cater to the gluten free crowd. I decided on the Navarino Farm’s Elk Pastrami wrap with sweet potato fries. I typically do not eat much meat, but this wrap ended up being soooo good. The menu noted the pastrami came from Navarino Farms in Shicoton, WI. Yah for local ingredients!

2013-11-29 17.39.17Saturday morning I tried something I’ve been contemplating for a while- Group Power! It was intimidating at first because I don’t regularly lift weights. Typically, I do body weight exercises for strength training. I have previously done Body Pump, which is the same class just under a different name. Group Power is a part of Body Training Systems while Body Pump is part of Les Mills. I really enjoyed doing something different! The class was challenging, but I took it pretty light on the weights so I could work on my form. I’m definitely going to incorporate this class into my weekly workout routine. Watch out, gettin’ buff over here. 🙂

2013-11-30 08.32.14Saturday night, hubby took me to see Hunger Games: Catching Fire. I read the Hunger Games books last year, but it’s been a while. I was pleasantly surprised with how invested in the movie I felt. It met my expectations and stuck to the book pretty well. I’ll be interested in how they do the third movie, as the third book was  a lot different than the first two. I enjoyed the first two books much more than the third. There is no District 12. BOOM. I remember audibly yelling “WHAT??” when I read the end of book two.

We took our family photo for our holiday card. One of my favorite Friends episodes is “The Creepy Holiday Card” where Ross and Mona send out their own holiday card against Ross’ reservations. Hubby and I always make a joke of it every year and say “We’re not there yet.” 😉

DSCN1009-1Hope you guys enjoyed a wonderful holiday weekend. Only three more weeks of work before our winter break! I’m guessing it will go by fast. Have a great week and check out other marvelous Mondays at Healthy Diva Eats.

Get any good Black Friday deals? Anyone try a new workout lately? Do you send out a holiday card?

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Turkey Trot Recap & It’s My Birthday!

2013-11-28 11.26.47Wishing you & yours a happy Thanksgiving yesterday! I hope you took the advice floating around the blogosphere and enjoyed your food and the people around you. As others have said, one meal will not “make or break” you. It’s habits over time that make a true impact. So today, we’re back at ‘er; living happy and healthy lives (not that we ever stopped…). Oh, and it just happens to be my 27th birthday. I’m linking up today with Jill at Fitness, Health & Happiness, Clare at Fitting It All In, Lauren at The Lauren Elizabeth, and Jennie at Diary of a Real House Wife

Yesterday, hubby and I got up early and readied ourselves for the Turkey Trot in Appleton, WI. By “ready” ourselves, I mean throw on some Pro Compression, tights, layers, hats & mittens. Cuz baby, it was COLD outside!

2013-11-28 06.48.10The temperature at the start was 21 degrees with a wind chill of 15. Not actually too bad for a November day in Wisconsin. We elected to do the 5 mile run and had signed up pretty early in September. For only $18 we got a long sleeve shirt and a 5 inch pumpkin pie. This was our first ever Turkey Trot in Appleton and surprisingly, parking and crowds were not bad at all. There were a lot of people there, but it was well organized. I really appreciate well organized events because makes such a difference!

I’ve been nursing an IT band injury for the past couple weeks, so I didn’t have high hopes as I began the trot. I wasn’t worried about my pace, but wore my Garmin to keep track of our mileage. Sure enough, about mile 2.5 I started feeling knee pain spread across my knee cap. Hubby stuck with me (what a guy, I know :)) and we walked the rest of the way. We finished in a little over an hour.

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Five Things About My Injury

1) Want to know how to drive a runner crazy? Make them walk while others around them are running. It was only slightly mentally painful (note: sarcasm) to watch others pass me when I know I could’ve easily passed them a couple months ago. I know, I know “compete against myself” blah, blah, blah. 🙂

2) It’s been mentally tough to go through an injury like this. I just want to run like I used to and I hope, hope, hope to get back to that point sooner rather than later.

3) I feel taking some time off from running and focusing on spinning, centergy (yoga+pilates), core, and possibly group power (weight lifting) may be to my benefit. I still love running and that’s part of the reason I feel I may need a little break. I know I’ll run again, but my body is telling me something. I need to get stronger to be the runner I want and know I can be.

4) It was ironic during the run because I’ve trained my mind throughout my half marathon training to push through almost anything. I don’t give up when running. I’ve mastered that mental toughness needed to push past pain. However, with my IT band issues it seems that mental toughness may be a hinderance rather than beneficial. I could push past the pain, but it’s likely I would only make my injury worse.

5) So instead, I’m focusing on—>staying warm by the fireplace.

2013-11-28 09.47.55Rolling out those calves with my new birthday present. Hubby may have let me open a birthday present early. Opps! Oh wait, we do that every year. 🙂 He got me this Gaiam Pressure Point Massager that I had been eyeing at Target.

2013-11-28 06.19.14If any of you are part of the “crazies” as I like to call them, good luck with Black Friday shopping! I’ll be doing some shopping online in my sweats.

Tonight for my birthday hubby is taking me to a fancy shmancy restaurant that I’m excited to try. Other than that, no big plans for the bday which I’m A OK with. Hope you have a wonderful weekend and get some sweat sessions in!

Do you Black Friday shop? In stores or online? Anyone else Trot? How did it go??

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Rollin’ With My Foamie

We’ve unknowingly settled into a nice little weekend routine around here. Friday nights are for watching Shark Tank (Did you see the cute Grace and Lace boot socks? Adorable!), Saturdays include a morning run, group core, cleaning the house, shopping, and renting a movie (this week it was “Man of Steel”), and Sundays finish off the weekend with group centergy, grocery shopping, and watching the Packers. We mix up our weekends, don’t get me wrong, but usually this is how it goes. And I kinda love it. It’s relaxing, yet I feel I get a good amount of things accomplished.

2013-11-22 10.21.32This weekend was very much like my typical weekend. I had been watching the forecast this week and was anticipating a potential indoor run. However, I sucked it up and bundled myself up to head outside for 2 miles on Friday.

After much debate and testing, I’ve decided to change my running shoe. My beloved Mizuno Wave Elixirs were working, but now with my IT band problems, I feel more support is needed. I’ve read many articles and websites that say otherwise- and I get that. But I really feel each individual person needs to do what’s best for them at that time. So maybe my Mizunos were working for me, but now things have changed and I feel less pain running in the Saucony Guide 7s. I’ve read that too much support isn’t good, but honestly, I just want to run. Whether that means more or less support, I don’t really care as long as it gets me on the road, errr treadmill (most likely for the next couple months).

2013-11-23 08.22.59I took the Saucony’s for a run around the block and then did a couple miles on the treadmill on Saturday. I still have IT band pain and knee pain, but I’m taking walk breaks and only doing what I can handle. I’m going slow, foam rolling, massaging, stretching and icing. Happy to report my knee has felt less sore after a couple miles! Can I go out and run 5 miles? No, not yet, but it’s a step in the right direction I feel. My hubby said he’d walk/run the Turkey Trot with me on Thanksgiving which makes me feel a lot better. Usually, we run at different paces, so we don’t run together. It will be nice to have him by my side for the trot. 🙂

It always makes things a little more entertaining to watch Shark Tank reruns on Hulu Plus while on the treadmill.

2013-11-23 08.22.29Rollin’ with my foamie.

foamrollingAfter my walk/run I went to group core Saturday morning. It’s only 30 minutes, but it’s pretty intense for those minutes. I love it.

2013-11-23 09.34.38Sunday morning I went to Centergy and am getting excited to do the training in January! I’m looking forward to sharing my love of the class with others. It’s truly an amazing class to take for runners who have tight muscles (Ahem, like me :)).

This week is a short one with Thanksgiving and the day after off. It also happens to be my birthday on Friday, so it should be a good week! Check out other marvelous Mondays at Healthy Diva Eats!

Outside or treadmill running in winter? What works for you, more or less support in running shoes?

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Five Things I’m Loving This Friday

I’ve contracted a sinus infection and thereby, lost my voice. As a speech language pathologist, it’s kinda a necessary component to have my voice. It was only slightly pathetic to “yell” to my speech kids yesterday and have it come out sounding like a whisper. I’m trying to rest my voice and crossing my fingers it gets better soon! Today I’m linking up for Fitness Friday with JillFive Things Friday with Clare, and Five on Friday with Darci! Go check out all the link up parties!

1) With the holidays coming up {quicker than I expect, as always}, I’m looking to maintain my level of fitness and nutrition. In the past, the holidays have been an excuse to make and eat all kinds of ridiculous sweets and treats and not think about my health. I would gain some weight around the holidays and it never really affected me. The past couple years my outlook on health and fitness has changed immensely. I know I could get through the holidays no problem, but it’s always nice to have a little support. This year, I will be joining the Elf for Health 2013 challenge put on by Lindsey at The Lean Green Bean .

The challenge runs November 25th-December 22nd. Challenge categories include Food, Fitness, For You, and For Others. Each participant will be paired with another “elf” and send twice weekly emails to support each other and share recipes/workouts. You can win some awesome prizes from Mizuno, Nature Box, Bondi Band, and Nuttzo among others. Sign up by today at noon if you want to join! Do it (it’s free)!

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2) I am in love with my new workout pants from American Eagle. These are the AEO performance striped crop legging in size S. I saw these posted on Instagram and had to check them out. I love workout capris/pants that have patterns or color to them. Black is so, well, boring. I heard through the grapevine that AE uses the same manufacturer as Lululemon for their workout gear. Not sure if it’s true, but they do feel really nice! They’re on a great sale right now, too!

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3)  I’ve never been a tea drinker and believe me I’ve tried to like it. I took a gamble and ordered some Peppermint Tea from Twinings on Amazon. I’ve read reviews that peppermint tea may help in calming the stomach during an IBS attack (not evidence based), however, that wasn’t my sole reason for purchasing it. I was also looking for a hot, caffeine-free drink for before bedtime. I’ve drank it every night so far this week and am really loving the taste!

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4) My dream has come true…I’m becoming a BTS Centergy instructor! I’ve posted about my love for Centergy many times. It’s no doubt something that I am extremely passionate about, so I am very excited for the opportunity to become a practicing instructor! The training is in the middle of January and spans over 3 days..so pretty much like a dream for me! The owner of my gym inquired about my interest a while back, so it will be nice to instruct at a gym I’m already familiar with. Centergy for three whole days! Woohoo! 

5) I was happy to see my prizes I won recently came in the mail yesterday! You wouldn’t know it by my voice (since it was nonexistent), but trust me, I was excited. I picked out the argyle marathon sock from Pro Compression in XS and won a sample pack of Larabars from a #vegrunchat twitter chat (Sundays @ 8pm central if you wanna join!). I usually don’t win much so I’m hoping this streak keeps going! And if not, well, I’m still going to participate because I love chatting about all things running!

2013-11-21 15.51.18Have a great weekend everyone! Take time to enjoy yourself and those around you. I’ll be testing out my knee again, seeing as I’m running the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving. Here’s hoping for the best!

Do you “go all out” during the holidays or keep yourself in check? Black or colorful/patterned workout pants? Anyone else a fitness instructor? Any advice for a soon-to-be?

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Mini Crock Pots & Popcorn

2013-11-17 19.38.10Murphy and I would like to wish you a happy Wednesday! My week has been going well so far, except for a cold I’ve developed. I’ve had less meetings after work this week and with Thanksgiving coming up, a short break is on the horizon! Woo hoo!

Today is What I Ate Wednesday hosted by Jenn at Peas and Crayons! My eats this week have been a little more diverse than usual. I’ve been getting fuller a lot quicker for some reason, so I’m not sure what that’s about. Could be some of the new food I’m eating.

Friday night I didn’t feel like cooking (let’s face it- do I ever?), so hubby and I grabbed some food from Q’doba. I don’t go there a whole lot, so I wasn’t exactly sure what to order. Although I studied abroad in Mexico, I’m not a huge fan of Mexican food in general- too many beans and tortillas does not make my stomach happy. I ended up going with the naked pork burrito bowl with lettuce, grilled veggies, salsa verde, and cheese. It was really good except that the grilled veggies made the lettuce kind of watery. The leftovers weren’t so great.

2013-11-15 17.33.54I am in love with my mini lunch crock pot. I received it last Christmas and forgot about it until recently. It’s perfect for taking soup or chili to work. You simply plug it in and your food will be nice and hot whenever you eat! It’s main use it just heating because the food needs to already be cooked. It’s really convenient for taking leftovers to work. I took my leftover baked potato soup (a la Skinnytaste) last week.

crockpotI’ve been on a popcorn kick lately. Not just plain old popcorn though, Pop Crunch Cheddar & Caramel Mix from Orville Redenbacher’s (such a good combo!) and Popcorn Indiana’s Cinnamon Sugar Kettle Corn. YUM.

popcornI picked up some cinnamon chips at my last grocery store run. I never bake with cinnamon chips, so I wasn’t completely sure what to use them in. After perusing Pinterest, I decided on Cinnamon Chip Pumpkin Spice cookies from I Heart Nap Time. They are really similar to the carrot cake pumpkin muffins I make often (just substituting cinnamon chips for mini chocolate chips and adding pudding mix). Make sure to bake the cookies the full 10 minutes. I under baked some of batches of mine and they’re a little soft (more “muffin” than “cookie” like).

2013-11-17 17.38.27Last night I enjoyed a little Centergy. I’m continuing to rehab my IT band with active exercise (thank you for all the advice!!) and am working on getting new running shoes. I think there may be a benefit to getting my feet refitted for running shoes. I’m curious what the other running store in my area will recommend for shoes. I’m definitely not hating the opportunity to look at new running shoes lately!

2013-11-17 07.59.54Keep calm and have a wonderful Wednesday!

Plain or flavored popcorn? Like or dislike Mexican food? Favorite fitness class this week?

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Getting Familiar with IT Band Syndrome

This past week I did my best to rest my body from running while still getting my work outs in. I did primarily group core and group centergy. I walked on the treadmill once for 2.5 miles. Other than that, I refrained from any type of running.

Thinking this would help with my IT band syndrome, I set out for 3 miles on Saturday morning. I mentally prepared for needing to walk and decided to alternate walking and running. I made it about a mile before I had to stop and walk due to knee pain. After a week of rest, the pain has unfortunately not gotten any better.

2013-11-16 08.18.50I’ve been doing research, as I know IT band syndrome is common with runners. Here’s what I’ve come up with for potential solutions.

1) Stop running – Although I’ve read some conflicting information. I’ve read to stop, as sharp pain is never a good type of pain. I’ve also read that resting the IT band will not heal it, that I need to actively recover to let the tendon heal by cross training, stretching, etc.

2) Foam roll– Thank you for the many suggestions last week to foam roll. I have the Trigger Point Performance the Grid foam roller and have been using it almost every day.

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3) New shoes– I bought my first “real” pair of running shoes last March and haven’t switched them since. I only have the one pair, so old shoes may be contributing to my injury. I stopped by my local running store and they suggested to get a new pair. My Mizuno Wave Elixirs have roughly 300 miles on them and are starting to wear on the bottom. The attendant suggested to stick with what has been working for me and not try a new shoe if I’ve been happy with the Elixir. Unfortunately, the Elixir has been discontinued so she showed me the replacement, Mizuno Wave Sayonara.

mizunosI ended up purchasing the Sayonara because it’s probably time for a new pair. However, it’s hard to judge the Sayonara because I can’t just go take them for run right now. My favorite part about the Elixir is the flexible toe box. I can wiggle my toes because it’s so stretchy. The Sayonara does not have that same quality and my feet felt a little tight in the toe box. Once I got them home and had more time to think about it, I decided I’m going to “wave sayonara” to the Sayonaras and order the same pair of Wave Elixir 8s online. I would love to support our local running shop, but I need to go with what works best for me and I did find my size online (the store was out of my size at both locations).

My luck just keeps rolling. I entered the Fit Approach Sweepstakes and Friday night I found out I won a pair of Pro Compression socks!! I already own a pair, so I know how awesome they are during and after long runs. They literally feel like someone is giving your legs a hug. I have the marathon sock in neon yellow. I bought a size S/M (7-11 shoe size), but feel that they could be tighter. This time I ordered a XS (4-7 shoe size) in the black argyle marathon sock. I’m so excited to get them! #keepittight

9301468_origI spent the rest of my weekend keeping up my #WeekendWorkoutWarrior routine with group core and group centergy classes.

2013-11-16 09.33.21I also spent some QT with this little guy, Murphy. He just melts my heart when he’s sleepy and curled up under our recliner. Dogs can live forever, right? Because I can’t imagine not having him around.

2013-11-16 20.59.02Have a great Monday by checking out my fellow HLB’s marvelous Mondays at Healthy Diva Eats!

Do you wear compression socks? Anyone else dealing with an injury or ITBS? Any advice?

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Four Things Friday

Because, well, my brain is a little fried today and I couldn’t think of five. So, four it is.

I’m starting the happy dance because though it’s been a great week, it’s also been exhausting. After sitting through a conference all day yesterday, I’m feeling a bit restless today. We drove 2 hours to the conference, sat through four presentations, and then drove the 2 hours back. I hate having to sit for so long. But, I did learn some great new ideas for assistive technology, so in the end it’s worth it!OMG--OMG

1) My workouts this week consisted of Core, Centergy, and walking. Yes, it slightly killed me to walk and not run, but I held myself back from testing out my knee quite yet. Though it sucks not being able to run like I used to right now, I’m just happy to be able to exercise. I am planning on doing a short run this weekend outside (3 miles?) and see how it feels. I have been stretching, foam rolling, and doing some hip strengthening exercises. Crossing my fingers it helps!

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2) I got an awesome email last week! I am a new Sweat Pink Ambassador!  Fit Approach was founded by two lovely ladies on a mission to build a healthy community. This healthy living community is supportive and all about being the strong, confident, ambitious women who sweat hard. I’m excited for this great avenue to meet and connect with other fellow bloggers. I’m still exploring and learning the capabilities of the website, but I’m loving it so far! Sweat pink ladies (and guys too:))!

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3) Sunday nights are one of my favorite nights because of the weekly twitter chats. If you haven’t joined #Vegrunchat at 8pm (central time) every Sunday night, think about it! I love talking running and veggies, so there’s no better place to do that than on Vegrunchat! I was lucky enough to win a sample pack of Larabars last week! I’ve had extremely good luck so far with twitter giveaways (knock on wood) so I’m crossing my fingers my luck continues. Now come on new Puma outfit!!

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4) I loved this article, “Jim’s Last Group Run.” I am grateful to be a part of a running community in the Fox Cities. Fellow local runners have been nothing but supportive here. This article brought a tear to my eye thinking about the comradery of running. How touching to honor Jim in the only way that was really fitting. Run in peace now, Jim.

Have a wonderful weekend, friends. Remember to MOVE, SWEAT, and just be.

Any fellow Sweat pink sisters reading? Coolest thing you ever won? What’s your workout going to be this weekend?

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Something Unexpected

Let’s just get this out of the way- yep, that Packer game was quite ugly. My family and I are die hard Packer fans so it’s hard to watch such a mess at home. Crossing my fingers our players get better soon {namely, you, Mr. Rodgers} so we can get more W’s!

Saturday morning started with good intentions, with a 5 ish mile run in mind. I’ve set my goal for this month at 40 miles {part of the Pile on the Miles Challenge via Run Eat Repeat}. Unfortunately, as I got about 4 miles into my run, something very unexpected happened. I felt pain, SHARP pain, on the outside of my left knee. I have never felt pain like this before. Being the resilient runner that I am {albeit stupid after the fact}, I tried to run through it, but surrendered to walking after only a short distance. After some research and my prior knowledge on running injuries, I know it’s my left IT band that’s the problem.

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What went wrong:

  • Didn’t take my own advice about Too Fast, Too Soon, Too Much, Too Often
  • Wanting to complete my monthly goal quickly and not having a set plan, I’ve run too many miles this month
  • I took up my training where I left off after my half marathon in September
  • I ran too fast out of the gate 

My plan is to take a short break from running for 3-5 days, depending on how I feel. I’ve read that IT band syndrome is one of the few injuries that heals well with stretching. I’m planning on some QT with my foam roller, yoga, and core classes. I’m considering adding more weight training to my fitness routine, as I’m sure my lack of hip/glute strength is not helping the cause. I’m not deterred by this– I’m  determined to allow myself to rest and heal so I can get back at ‘er. I’ve had hip pain in the past, which I believe was also caused by my IT band. It’s just never felt like this before. Luckily, I’m not in the mist of training for anything major- just the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving. Im going to give my body the rest it needs from running, while still continuing other forms of exercise.

I could worry and fret, but I know other runners have endured much worse. Im listening to my body instead {and my hubby who told me —>REST!}. So, no worries that I’m going to make it worse. I had this encouraging fortune this weekend, which I’ll take as a good sign. {by the way, the only sport I do is running :)}

2013-11-09 06.54.40Saturday night, hubby and I went to watch some hockey. I’m not super familiar with the sport, but I love that it’s fast action. We spectated the Green Bay Gamblers and it was a pretty exciting night. I got to “chuck a puck” and watch for flying sticks/pucks. I told my hubby if I suffered a TBI from a flying puck I was going to blame him.

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2013-11-09 18.38.17Before the hockey game, I had my first drink {besides wine} at a restaurant in a LONG time. I’m just not a big drinker, as normally I would rather have water with my meals. But I was feeling a “go for it” night, so a Hot Apple Cider {Goldschlager, Pucker Sour Apple schnapps, apple juice & a cinnamon stick; served warm} was my drink of choice. Just one, but it tasted really good!

hotciderI could tell I drank and ate differently than normal. I felt bloated and gassy most of the night. I wasn’t comfortable, but I’ll take it over stomach pain. Once in a while I can handle a stomach like this, knowing it will subside after a night of sleep. That’s the thing with IBS-C, I just have to wait it out and see how I feel. I knew alcohol and some of the food I ate wasn’t FODMAP friendly, so I was prepared to not feel the best.

Sunday morning, the sun was shining {finally} and hubby and I headed to the gym. Sunday morning Centergy is the best way to start my week. It felt especially good considering my IT band issues.

2013-11-10 07.55.54Hope you had a great weekend and took time to recharge for the week ahead! 

Were you a #WeekendWorkoutWarrior? Have you suffered any running injuries? What did you do to recover? 

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Cold Weather Running Gear Must Haves

runninggearAs the weather has made her switch to colder, frosty mornings, I have had to change up my running gear. This is my first fall/winter running, as I’m still a newbie. After reading up on cold weather running gear “must haves”, I’ve come up with my own list. These are the items I swear by and run with religiously in the cold!

1) Asics PR Shelter Headwarmer

In my opinion, a headwarmer is the way to go since it keeps your ears warm while allowing heat to escape through your head. Even though the air feels chilly when you first step out the door, your body warms up quickly and you don’t want to be sweating 2 miles into your run.

2) Asics Women’s Quinn Jacket

I ordered this jacket a while ago from Amazon when it was on sale. It’s really warm, but not heavy feeling. I have been loving it for chilly morning runs.

3) Flipbelt 

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(under my jacket) Not necessarily a “cold weather” accessory only, but it’s a product that I truly love! I’ve had one since last spring and I never run without it. I’m weird about having too many things on my wrists and arms, so the fact that this allows me to have my arms free is awesome. I also love that I don’t have to worry about it falling down. I had a hard time finding an armband that wouldn’t slide down because my arms are kinda small (workin’ on it 🙂 ). This is the perfect solution. It comes in lots of fun colors and fits my phone, money, FOB for my car, and fuel for long runs. (P.S. Fashion tip: Please don’t wear this over your clothes. It looks hideous that way. It’s meant to mimic the band of your pants or a belt people!)

4) Garmin Forerunner 10

A must have for any running weather really. I love my Garmin Forerunner 10. It’s simple enough, yet tells me exactly what I need and want to know! It does take usually 2-3 minutes to find the satellites before a run, but I’m usually warming up then anyways. This has been essential in improving my pace. When I started seriously running this past spring, I remember thinking I was “comfortable” at a 10:30 min/mile pace. Now my “comfortable” pace is around 9:00 min/mile. It’s amazing what training with a GPS watch can do for you!

5) Nike Women’s Epic Run Tight

I absolutely love these running tights. They’re so comfortable and keep me warm in cold weather. I can picture myself logging many miles in these tights. I see they’re $85 now. Believe me, I love running gear, but did not pay that much!

6) Fingerless Gloves

I picked up fingerless gloves at the Dollar Tree for the Fox Cities half marathon in September, thinking I’d toss them along the way. However, I ended up really liking them! I tend to get hot then cold, then hot again so these are perfect for cold weather running. They keep my palms warm while letting some heat out of my fingertips. And if I lose them or toss them, I don’t care because they’re so cheap!

7) Mizuno Wave Exlixir 8s

These are my very first pair of running shoes. I curse the day I will have to retire them. We’ve been through a lot of miles together and hopefully there are a lot more miles in our future. Unfortunately, I forsee myself needing a new pair in the spring. I’ll continue to love them this winter while I still can, as they’ve been discontinued. 😦

I could ramble on about my favorite running things for hours, but I’ll spare you and leave you with this- Invest in yourself this weekend. Be a #WeekendWorkoutWarrior. Be thankful to MOVE, SWEAT, and just BE. {have a great weekend!}

What are your running must haves in the cold?

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Thankful Thursday

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I think it’s important to take reflection time each day; each week to remember what we’re thankful for. Thanksgiving is approaching which usually spurs these thoughts, but taking small moments throughout the year has value as well.

Relaxation- 

I’ve noticed lately how much my mind races throughout the day. I’m constantly thinking about something that already happened or something that’s going to happen. It’s not too often I take time to live “in the moment” and relax. The last 5 minutes of Centergy class is one of the few moments throughout my week that I just sit and breathe. It is namely referred to as the “restore” track. I never knew how hard it is to not think. I have to picture my mind as a chalkboard and any thought that comes into my head, I simply erase. I am thankful for those 5 minutes to just be.

4Sweat-

I am thankful to be able to sweat. The actual being sweaty part I could do without {obviously}, but I kinda love it when sweat pours down my face. It’s a reminder how much my body is capable of and how much injustice I do my body by sitting during my day. My body was made to MOVE, to WORK, and to SWEAT. I am thankful to finally understand this.

2013-09-28 08.34.49Language-

I found this quote at the beginning of the school year and it sums up how I important I feel my job is.

quote-the-limits-of-my-language-are-the-limits-of-my-mind-all-i-know-is-what-i-have-words-for-ludwig-wittgenstein-355418Who would we be without words to express ourselves? I think about this every day as I treat kiddos with severe cognitive disabilities. I am thankful to have found a job {speech language pathology} I am passionate about. I am thankful for my education, my upbringing, and that I have the opportunity to make a difference; to help kids with such a basic need- to communicate. It kind of gives me chills. 🙂

Produce-

farmersmarketThis summer I frequented the farmer’s market practically every Saturday morning. I am thankful to be able to buy fresh, local produce. It’s not really surprising how much better fresh food tastes and how much better I feel when eating clean. I used to eat a lot of processed foods, not really thinking about what I was putting in my body (i.e., chips, crackers, pretzels). At that time, I didn’t care. I’m much more conscious of what I put in my body now. I want and need to supply my body with nourishing foods to sustain energy for my day and exercise.

30 Days of Thanks Challenge on Diary of a Semi-Health Nut

Think about it-

What are you thankful for this Thursday?

pile-on-the-miles-2013

Pile on the Miles update: 12.5/40 miles

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