Monday, April 30, 2012

#FoodiePenPals: April Edition

We're about to say goodbye to April, which makes it time for Foodie Pen Pals everywhere to reveal the goods they got this month. I certainly love participating in this program, and have tried many a new food as a result. And I've also found myself reading some new blogs, too. So without further ado, I give you this month's loot. Thanks, Julia!

Seriously, Blue Diamond crackers are so yummy. I've had the almond version before, but never the hazelnut, and it's safe to say that they did not disappoint. I ate them with some homemade peanut butter and banana dip:

Take a banana, mash it, then mix in a tablespoon of peanut butter. Maybe even some cinnamon if you're feeling adventurous. I promise you—totally delicious. Like the Be Real cereal. It's oatmeal with pretty much everything in it, minus all the gook like preservatives and artificial flavors. Since I'm pretty much obsessed with bananas, that's what I topped it with in the wee hours of one morning before my daughter woke up.

Sometimes I have to scarf down breakfast, otherwise I don't get breakfast, so having an instant cereal that is both good for me and good flavored is definitely, well...a very good thing. And since I sometimes have to snack on the go, the packet of Justin's Nut Butter was a definite winner:

Maple flavor? Deluxe, so good on my apple and bet I squeezed some of it right into my mouth. So much easier than putting it on the apple all ladylike. Well, at least when I'm driving. Maybe I should have grabbed one of the Clif bars instead.

Sometimes I just want one single bite, so I'm prone to cutting up my snack bars so I can save some for later. This particular bar had chocolate on it, so it when a long way in terms of satisfying the sweet tooth without breaking my calorie bank.

Don't even get me started on the Newman's Own Organic Peanut Butter Cups that Julia sent me. How sinfully delicious they were. Like I'd even consider cutting those up. But anyway, if you want to participate in the Foodie Pen Pal program (you should), here's all the info you need:

Question: Have you discovered any new and delicious foods lately?

Sunday, April 29, 2012

"Tweet, tweet.." said me.

Yep, so I joined Twitter. Daily Dose is officially flyin' with the rest of the birds, despite being a bit late to the game. Better late than never, right? Follow me: @ADailyDoseOfFit. (I mean, if you want to.) I'll follow you back. That's one thing I've figured out how to do. Did anyone else find Twitter to be extremely overwhelming at first? I hope I'm not alone. Hashtag, wha? RT who?! I'll get it eventually. In the meantime, please pardon me if I do or say anything that's not Twitterpropriate.

In other news, I've been chosen to be a FitFluential Ambassador. FitFluential is "a growing family of fitness fanatics spreading a positive healthy message year-round. FitFluential is Fitness Found." Cool, right?

And finally, the winner of my Unjunk Your Junk Food giveway is:

If she sounds familiar, it's probably because I mentioned her on a Foodie Pen Pal reveal day. I was the lucky recipient of some pretty fantastic goods from this girl, and she happens to write a great blog. Check it out. And Sarah, can't wait to hear what you think about the book.

And now, I'm off to make some dinner. On the menu: BBQ pork with a side of roasted carrots. Possibly a salad, too. I haven't decided. Either way, I'm starving and totally blaming the four miles I ran this afternoon.

Now, if you're currently on Twitter, I'm hoping you can help me with the following:
1) How do I know what hashtags to use, or what hashtags even exist?
2) When you reply to someone, do you include the original tweet?
3) Are there any etiquette rules that I need to know about?

Thanks, guys. (And girls.)

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Body After Baby

This coming Thursday, my precious little sweet will be four months old—I gave birth to a child four months ago. This fact continues to blow my mind on multiple levels. 1) That I actually did it, and 2) that it's already been four months. Gah! Time flies, evident by the box full of clothing that is already too small for Hannah. Please stop growing, little girl. Please.

As I look back on all that my body has been through, I have to say that pregnancy is an amazing process. An extremely hard, yet amazing process. The female body is a brilliant thing, really. To be able to grow another human? What! Fascinating. My pregnancy was wonderful, my recovery...annoying. I tell people that I prefer labor and delivery over recovery. It's true. Labor is manageable, full of excitement and anticipation. Delivery presents your child, the one you already love more than you ever thought you could. Recovery is annoying and just plain painful. At least it was for me.
They say, "'ll be sore." 
I was. I'll spare you the details, but I was.

They say, "'ll have to take it easy for a while."
I did. But mentally, I wanted to do more. 

It was hard not to.
But I really, physically could not do more.

And then you start to feel better. 
And then you don't feel better.

But what you're feeling really doesn't matter because you've got your little bundle of joy. So all of that, that's what I wish they would have told me during our birthing classes. But life continues once you come home, despite of what you've been through. And it continues to change by the minute, amazing you more and more by the second. Until one day, you've got the whole mothering thing down. And you feel like yourself again.

Well, mostly like yourself.

If you're breastfeeding, as I am, recovery...rather, your weight loss is hindered by your body's need to produce food for another. No, it doesn't make you lose weight fast. It helps, but it's not a quick fixer-upper. You have to work really hard to shed that baby weight. But, don't forget, nine months on and nine months off. So they say. That's why prenatal fitness and health care are important.

But that's another post entirely.

What I'm here right now telling you is that at some point you'll be ready to work hard again. And I know you'll want to focus on that core, specifically. But until then, take it easy and enjoy your new bundle of joy. Meet with your doctor at your six-week checkup, then proceed as he/she tells you.

That was about 15 weeks ago for me.
Here's my core today (yeah, stomach in your face):

No stretch marks, and definitely not as toned. Still about 7 pounds up from my pre-pregnancy weight. Give or take, of course, depending on diet and water.

(Note: If you're pregnant, get some Cocoa Butter. I swear that's part of the reason why I don't have stretch marks. That and my over consumption of water while pregnant.)

Here's what I looked like before I got pregnant:

Just a bit tighter, taken in January and I got pregnant in April. So, well over a year ago at this point. I might not ever look like that again, but I'm happy with my body right now. How could I not be?! It grew my daughter for me!

But I have been hitting the core pretty hard lately. Because 1) core strength is important, 2) it's fun tow work, 3) and I wouldn't be a human woman if I didn't want my stomach to be toned. So I brought an oldie-but-goodie to Circuit Sculpt on Monday and it seriously made me sore! Scissor kicks:
Source: Oxygen

Give them a try. I felt it particularly low in my abdominals. See if you feel it there, too. Just be sure to keep that low back pressed into the ground as shown above. You don't want it creeping up into an arch. That's stress on the spine you don't need.

With that, I'm off to play with my sweet precious little bean of a girly girl. God, I love her.

Question: What's your favorite abdominal exercise? And if you've ever had a child, tell me one thing about pregnancy and childbirth that surprised you the most.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Two Running Songs

I am absolutely not meant to write on Thursdays. I've come to this conclusion. Life, man... But I'm here today. I'm writing to you, even though I'm doing so much later than I had hoped. You see, I put on my fancy shoes today and had lunch with a friend. Fancy shoes:

By "fancy," I obviously refer to any pair of shoes not suitable for use in a gym. I live in gym shoes, this you know, so I relish any opportunity to get out in a pair of shoes such as the one you see above. But in the grand scheme of things, these shoes aren't that important even though they're super cute. What's important is the fact that lunch is pretty much all that I accomplished today.

A certain missy pants wanted nothing, and I do mean absolutely nothing, to do with her afternoon nap today. I tend to get a lot done during afternoon naps. So what happened yesterday? Well, she slept. So I forced myself to take a brain break because there wasn't much to be done around the house and I just didn't feel like doing anything. Nothing! I never feel like this, like...ever. So I did the most brainless thing I could come up with—I watched two episodes of "Hart of Dixie" on Hulu. See? Brain break. And then I went for a run. (You didn't think I'd slack all day, did you?)

When you live in Michigan, especially if you live by the lake, you learn quickly that the wind can be very brutal. Maybe it blows over from Chicago, I don't know, but it certainly made my run so friggen' hard. And cold. Like, frostbite in April kinda cold. I only went out for a three-miler, but it felt like a forever-miler through the North Pole. So I ran fast:

I didn't think these stats were all that bad since I was running into the wind on the way out and up a few slight inclines on the way back. Maybe it was the "Move Shake Drop" remix I just downloaded. Booty music always makes me move. Or perhaps it was Florence and the Machine's "Dog Days"—yeah, it starts slow, but how motivating are the lyrics?

OK, sure. I will. And I did (see above).

And I will again this weekend when I go for another long run. I've got four miles on tap, after which things'll increase even more with the new week. Building, building...

Have a good Friday, everyone. Circuit Sculpt this morning left my abs feelin' kinda sore, which is a good thing. More on that tomorrow. After about four hours of trying to write this post up, I'm finally ready to hit the "Publish" button. Hooray!

Oh, wait. Don't forget to enter my giveaway. I've got one copy of Unjunk Your Junk Food that's looking for a new home. You know you want it.

Question: What song is really motivating you on your runs right now?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

WIAW: Late Lunch, Great Lunch

So I didn't eat lunch until 3:30PM today. It just wasn't my day. I had to run a few errands in my little downtown, during which I thought I'd successfully pick something up from the Greek restaurant. I wanted hummus somethin' fierce. But it wasn't meant to be and I ended up getting my money back. And probably making the manager really mad, but that's what you get when you charge me too much and then tell me you don't have what I ordered. And sorry, my kid's screaming. I really just need to go.

By the time I got home, someone else wanted lunch. And then wouldn't go down for a nap.


Lunch was a late one, but it was super great:

Egg on an English muffing with a wedge of Laughing Cow Queso Fresco and Chipotle, red pepper and onion slices, and some spinach. Yeah, totally—so good.

Not pictured: The side of Chobani. Pomegranate, style. One of my favorites.

Let's back it up to breakfast. It is, after all, What I Ate Wednesday so I must share these things.

So, oats in a jar served in a bowl and eaten at 5:00AM.

Pretty typical these days, and no...those aren't black olives. Although I like them, I much prefer blueberries in my oats as shown. I also prefer decaf coffee, but when you're pressed for time, you resort to what you've got on hand. And what I had on hand was a packet of instant Starbucks Vanilla coffee. To go:

I only had one client at the gym, but I wanted to hit up the library on the way home. It was 9:15AM when I left, and since I hadn't eaten since 5:00AM, I packed a little tin full of almonds, hazelnuts and chopped prunes. Not raisins, prunes.

It was the perfect snack, especially since it held me over until 3:30PM. I ended up eating some more nuts after my late-but-great lunch, only these nuts were covered in dark chocolate.

I walked right past my favorite chocolate shop...come now, not go in? Crazy talk. And since my afternoon was, as I've already told you, quite crazy, I allowed myself a glass of wine while I prepped dinner.

What kind? Chateau Grand Traverse Late Harvest Riesling. It's a Michigan wine, actually. And yes, I am breastfeeding...but Hannah gets a bottle before bed, so it's perfectly fine for mom to indulge herself a bit. Perfectly fine, indeed.

I didn't stop the indulging at my single glass of wine. I pretty much defined the word when it came to eating my dinner:

Seven grains, garlic and  more than an extra cup of veggies. For real, that's it. I used the rest of my Harvest Grains Blend from Sarah, a few tablespoons of Garlic Expressions and whatever veggies I happened to have on hand.

It might have been the easiest meal I've ever made. Quite possibly the most delicious. And also full of veggies. I can't wait to eat the leftovers tomorrow.

Oh, hey—if you need some helping picking out your groceries, you might want to enter my giveaway. A copy of Unjunk Your Junk Food might be just the thing you're looking for.

Question: When you go to your favorite chocolate shop, what do you get? I get dark chocolate almonds, dark chocolate peanuts and a malted milk ball (or two). And if you don't like chocolate, tell me why. I need to understand these things, although I doubt I ever really will.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Does skinny taste good?

I checked (wasted time on) Pinterest the other day and found the Kate Moss quote at right. I pinned it, adding "this is stupid" beneath the photo. In my mind, it promotes being skinny. That no matter how good something tastes, it's still not worth eating because it'll make you fat, and that the ultimate goal is to be skinny—I really can't see this as good. Food tastes good, as it should, but we can't pass on certain versions of it just to feel skinny. Food is our fuel, food isn't what makes us fat or unhealthy.

The decisions we make in relationship to the foods we choose to eat can wreak havoc on our waistlines. So if you're passing on food, it should be purely because it's not really the type of food you need to be eating. Not because if you eat it, you might get fat. That's too black an white because not eating, after all, is not the solution. Healthy eating is, and healthy eating can taste really damn good.

Now, let's be completely honest and true—it really isn't about being skinny. Remember the whole "skinny fat" theory? There's definitely a bit of truth to it. So it's about being healthy, active and conscious of the relationship you have with your own body because if it's a healthy relationship, it's a beautiful body. Even if it's bigger than someone else's body.

At least that's what I think about the image above.

Question: What do you think?

Monday, April 23, 2012

WIN THIS: Unjunk Your Junk Food

Such is the goal of the edible (R)evolution, which was started by Naturally Savvy co-creators Andrea Donsky and Randy Boyer as a supplement to their new book, Unjunk Your Junk Food: Healthy Alternatives to Conventional Snacks. If this book sounds familiar to you, it's because I've already told you how much I love it. And I'm not alone. Famous faces like Maria Shriver and Alan Alda love it, too. Probably because it's chock full of information meant to help us navigate the confusing aisles at the grocery store.

There are so many delicious foods out there that promise to be healthy—but are they? On page 25 of the book, you'll find a "Worst Ingredients" chart that helps you navigate food labels. Because really, we should all be reading food labels. The chart is divided into seven categories that represent the most offensive ingredients: high-fructose corn syrup, trans-fats, MSG, artificial flavors, artificial colors, artificial sweeteners and preservatives.

You might be surprised (as I was) to find some or all of these in your favorite foods. For example, I buy 100% whole wheat bread "made with only the very best ingredients."

Except that it's made with high fructose corn syrup. And I confess to knowing this as I drop it into my grocery cart. We're very aware of how much money we spend at the grocery store, so I have to pick and choose my battles. And since this bread is so cheap, I pick it to leave room for more fresh fruits and veggies. And turkey sausage for tonight's pasta dish, even though...

...they've got some preservatives. I love how they say "added for flavor protection" as if that's supposed to make it better.

While I can say with certainty that we generally try to buy the best version of everything out there, whenever we do buy foods with the seven offensive ingredients, we usually do so knowingly. And that's where this book comes in handy. It's a good versus bad anthology, meant to to be carried through the store alongside your grocery list. To read it is to familiarize yourself with healthier alternatives, Unjunked junk food, if you will. According to the edible (R)evolution, this really is a four-step process:

If you're interested in getting your hands on a copy of Unjunk Your Junk Food, visit Barnes & Noble or Amazon and order yourself a copy. Or you could enter below for a chance to win a copy. Naturally Savvy sent me a free copy, but since I've already got one, I figured it be best to pass it along to one of you, my dear and loyal readers.
a Rafflecopter giveaway Oh, and just so you know, when you "like" Naturally Savvy on Facebook, you're setting yourself up to catch wind of other awesome giveaways. Find them on Twitter, too!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Thanks for the produce, Earth. (#Infographic)

It comes around once a year, but really, every day should be Earth Day. Our giant ball of a space is the only place we've got, and there are certainly a lot of us sharing it—I'd say that's worthy of some recognition on a daily basis, you know how many of us humans exist. And we're not the easiest bunch to live with. Think pollution, landfills, deforestation. We are a very messy bunch. No wonder the weather gets so nasty sometimes. I'd get pissed, too if I was Mother Earth!

It's all about respect. Respect what she's given us and she'll respect us by continuing to give. Although it's getting harder and harder for her to keep up, evident by (among other things) the lack of water so many of us experience. Those of you that have good access (if you're typing on a computer, then that's probably you) need to be forever grateful of this gift. Trust me, bad water is really atrocious on so many levels. And there's a lot of bad water out there.

Also, there's a lot of bad land that is super unsuitable for growing produce. And you all know that I think produce is Mother Nature's candy. Full of vitamins, minerals and more, these little pockets of color that come out of the ground are little gifts of health. Some of us know how to work with the Earth to make an overabundance for ourselves and others, while some of us can barely get a single tomato (me) to grow. And while I'll always prefer fresh, local and organic over mass produced fruits and veggies shipped in from who-knows-where, I am a bit thankful that I have that option.

I couldn't, for example, grow a mango in my backyard.
And I really like mangoes.

Did you know that they are currently in-season? It helps to buy produce that's in-season as your chances of getting it locally are greater, but again, with things like mango and pineapple—if you can't grow them locally, then you have to buy them shipping in from afar. At least if you buy "in season," you know you're getting them somewhat fresh. Keyword: Somewhat. Let's face it, I'd rather go to Hawaii for my mangoes but it's just not an option. (Seriously wishing it was.)

Here's a handy dandy chart that should help you determine which pieces out of Mother Nature's candy bowl are currently in-season.

And since it's Earth Day, if you do one thing today for Mother Earth, remember the water that so many of our fellow humans can't access. Turn the faucet off when you're brushing your teeth or washing dishes. Shave five minutes off your shower. Do something, anything. It all counts.

Question: What do you do in your daily life to help preserve this wonderful world we call home? Recycle? Ride your bike to work? Shop local? Tell me...

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Granola Bar Cups

Hello, Saturday! Is it sunny where you live? It's bright out but still quite chilly up here in Michigan. I just walked outside to check out the yard—I pretty much froze my patootie off, but I did so wearing flip flops and a short-sleeve shirt so I'm not complaining. Back to the yard. Last year, we pretty much focused on moving in, getting settled and decorating the nursery. This year, it's all systems go on all things outside. Our flower beds are a, seriously. They're full of weeds and rocks and old mulch. But I'm overjoyed that the rhubarb I transplanted from my parents' house in the fall is growing strong:

I love rhubarb, and I wasn't kidding about those flower beds.

Anyone wanna come help?!

Or maybe you'd rather make these:

Granola bar cups. Cupcakes? They're about the size of a cupcake, that's for sure. I followed my standard granola bar bites recipe, pressing some of the mix into a cupcake pan to create cups worthy of a Greek yogurt/fresh strawberry mixture. Cook 'em up just like the bite version, store 'em in the refrigerator. Oh, man. So good! Not only do they make a great snack, they'd make an excellent addition to any breakfast or brunch spread.

Question: What are you most looking forward to planting this year if you haven't yet done so already? Along with the rhubarb, which I've obviously already planted, I'm looking forward to giving some basil a go. And some flowers, of course.

Friday, April 20, 2012

What happened to Thursday?

I call myself A Daily Dose of Fit with emphasis on the "Daily Dose" part. So when I skip posting for a day, I feel very guilty. Almost as if I'm not worthy of the very title I've given myself. And I feel as though I'm neglecting you, dear readers. You've been so good to me. Perhaps I should have named myself something else to alleviate some of the self-induced pressure to deliver. Or perhaps I need to just get over it and remember the quote at right. I do, after all, have a very busy life at the moment—that's not a complaint, just a fact. I'm sure you understand.

Anyhoo, let me recap Thursday. It was actually a very good day.

1) Work was exciting. I taught a TRX class, then took a roam roller class. We have a new massage therapist on staff, and she seems to specialize in foam rolling. I did some continuing ed on the foam roller, so I took her class to see what she's got up her sleeve. And to prepare myself, should she ever need a sub. If there's a foam roller class at your gym, do it.

2) Hannah took a nap for what could have been four hours had I not gotten her up to eat some dinner. I spent those four hours catching up on laundry and dishes, and picking up the piles of clutter I seem to be so good at creating these days. I had no idea how long she'd actually sleep for, so I basically ran around my house the entire time she snoozed. Does that count as cardio?

3) I went for another run! Three miles at a 9-minute pace, to be exact. I've got myself on a plan that should successfully prepare me for my upcoming 10K without a problem. Jason came home and fed Hannah while I skipped out for about half an hour. I use the MapMyRun app, which is awesome.

4) I caught up on my veggie intake yesterday, cooking up a big batch on the stove and totally making up for my lack thereof on Tuesday and Wednesday. Yes, there are Brussels sprouts in the mix. (Sides: BBQ pork and a slice of wheat with NuttZo...I know, random on the nut butter. I couldn't shake the craving.)

Can you tell which  of the above was shot in natural light? I'm pretty primitive with the photography around here. No light box, no fancy camera. Just a point-and-shoot and whatever light I can get my hands on. Fortunately, I get a lot of natural light when it's nice out. Unfortunately, the light in my house is really hard to work with.)

5) I whipped up some cookies yesterday, too. Jackie's strawberry oatmeal cookies. Except I forgot the baking powder and added blueberries. They tasted like muffins. The blueberries were clutch.

And that pretty much what happened to Thursday. Today,'s still going. And Hannah is still sleeping for what will hopefully be another longish nap. Just when you think you've got a schedule down, you suddenly don't. Fingers crossed she continues to sleep until 8:00AM every morning so I can continue teaching Circuit Sculpt. Did you try Monday's class? Regardless, I give you today's class:

Question: What is your favorite fitness class? And if you're a blogger, what's your secret to balance time spent blogging with time spent living?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

WIAW: Minus the Veggies

I seriously bombed in the veggie department yesterday. I'm much more prone to a fruit preference, and often forget that veggies make great snacks, too. For example:

Nine times out of ten, I eat an apple with some nut butter when I get hungry in the afternoon. But why not munch on some carrots and hummus? I love carrots and hummus. Or any veggie and hummus, really. I should stop buying apples for awhile. (Yeah, right.)

Breakfast was a two-fer again as I'm still waking up really early to pump. First up was a boring bowl of yogurt, strawberries and blueberries. I'll spare you the picture. A few hours later, I ate this:

Banana slices over honey-peanut butter on a cinnamon raisin English muffin. You know how much I love cinnamon raisin goods.

Lunch was not the typical salad, which is one of the reasons I lacked in the veggie department today. I almost always eat a salad, but wanted to try Roni's avocado and pinto quesadilla. 

It did not, by any means, disappoint me. I followed her recipe exactly, adding some of the leftover chicken breast I had in the 'fridge. Why not, right? Seriously, you need to make this. I imagine it would be good with black beans, too. I tend to favor black beans, though. Case and point:

Black bean chips and salsa, my pre-quesadilla appetizer. I found them at a health foods store in South Bend. They were on sale for 79 cents and I had a $1.00 off coupon. It was a no-brainer, obviously. They were good, too.

Dinner was made for the husband. I sometimes take one for the team. Translation: We had Hamburger Helper. But it didn't come from a box:

It was actually Rebecca's no-helper cheeseburger macaroni—decidedly not my typical meal, but when I saw the recipe, I knew it'd be a winner with the husband. And it was.

That's what I ate on Tuesday (plus maybe a few peanut M&Ms).

Question: What's your favorite veggie-based snack? I need some ideas!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Running With a Purpose

I used to hate running. In grade school, my gym teacher would make us run a mile and she'd time us, too. I would literally cry inside my head because I dreaded it so. My lungs would burn so bad and my timing would suck which, in turn, made me feel like I sucked.

This is how I felt through high school, too. Running...who needed it, anyway? It's not like I wanted to be a track star. Give me my pompons. Running onto and off of the court during time outs was enough for me. And then I got to college where everyone was doing it. You were cool if you went for a run in between classes.

I wanted to be a cool runner girl.
But I still sucked air every time I tried it.

That's how power walking became my thing. When I got my first apartment, I developed a route from my door to the beach...

...and back. I don't know how long of a path it was, but one day it wasn't enough.

And that's when I became a runner.

I'd walk, add some running, then walk some more. Repeat, repeat and repeat until suddenly I was running more than I was walking. And then I stopped walking completely.

That was in 2006.
In 2011, I got pregnant.

That's when I stopped running. Well, when I hit my seventh month of pregnancy and I could no longer make it around the track once without having to pee.

January 3, 2012.

The day I gave birth to our daughter Hannah. All thoughts off of running.

It took about a month for me to really feel like getting up and moving again, and even then, I'd just walk very...very slowly around the track at the gym with my girl strapped into an infant carrier. At my six-week checkup, my doctor said it was all-systems-go for exercise. So I went. Slowly. Three and a half months after the birth of my daughter, I'm kickin' butt and takin' names again. But I've lost my running mojo.

I'm running without a purpose.
Or a schedule.

It's less than motivating.

I keep thinking back to 2009. The year I trained for and ran the Chicago Half Marathon. To this day, it remains the longest race I've ever done. I keep my bib and my training log in a "reference" folder with all the rest of my fitness and blog files. Today, I pulled it out:

I needed to remind myself why I do, in fact, like to run. And that when I run on a schedule, I'm much better at it—and I enjoy it more, oddly enough. To run on a schedule is to run with purpose. At least that's how I feel. Often, to run on a schedule is to have an end goal, too.

I had every intention of running The Color Run 5K in Chicago this summer, but it sold out in a flash (damn). So now I have my sights set on The Hartford Strawberry Run 10K in a small town not too far from where I live. I like strawberries, so why not. And I still want to run The Hot Chocolate 15K in the fall in Chicago. (Obviously I love chocolate, too.)

For me, a 10K is one of those races that lies in between fun and hard work. It's not the greatest of distances, but it's more than a 5K. So I'll need to train. Read: I'll need to run with a purpose.


I headed out (yep, on the streets) for a three-miler tonight. It felt so good. And as soon as I hit send, I'm going to revisit the running log pictured above and tweak it to my new life schedule (translation: Hannah's schedule) and the fact that I've got about eight weeks to get this body back up to 6-mile form.

I think I can do it.
I've found a way to run with a purpose.

Question: Why do you run? What is your greatest running achievement?

Monday, April 16, 2012

One Hour Circuit Workout, Weekend Recap

I taught my 6:00AM Circuit Sculpt today. First time in almost four months. Hannah sleeps soundly until 8:00AM, so I have plenty of time in the morning to wake up and pump, teach and shower before she needs me. I wasn't sure how that class would fit back into my schedule, but it does and I'm glad. I like getting my workout done early—and I really like everyone that joins me. Makes it easier to get up, really.

What we did today:

What we did this weekend:

We celebrated that girl, my sister. She's a bachelorette and this weekend was her party. We rented a house in the woods somewhere in Michigan. Yeah, eight girls in the woods. I won't lie and say we weren't scared just a bit. Or that we didn't consume large amounts of sugar via these tasty cupcakes:

I also won't lie and tell you we didn't consume large amounts of wine...

...'cause we did:

We also successfully started a fire.

Well, they did.

The rest of us watched, waiting patiently while thinking about S'mores. Make note: Natural peanut butter tastes really, super good on a S'more.

So what if I didn't exactly eat healthy this weekend, I'm back on track today.

Speaking of eating healthy. Remember when I mentioned Rise Bars a few days ago? They got wind of my words and offered to send me a sampler box so I could try the entire line...which is awesome because I can't find any other flavors in my town. So I was especially thrilled to come home to this on Sunday:

It's as if I have a Rise Bar store in my pantry.

Question: What's one thing in your pantry that makes you happy?


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