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Est. August 9, 2018

Est. August 9, 2018

I write this post today with a heart full of so much love and as an official mommy to Olivia Lee. She’s perfect. I was always wondering how my birth story would go, and it started a couple of weeks early! Olivia just couldn’t wait a day longer and made her way into this world at 10:53 a.m. on Thursday, August 9th. Little did I know that on Wednesday night as I prepared to go to bed, when the clock hit midnight…my water would break (I’m sure one could make a Cinderella joke here somewhere). There are several things that people just don’t tell you or get wrong completely. For example, “oh it’s just a little trickle of water when your water breaks.” Um how about it’s like Niagra Falls and it doesn’t stop until you give birth!!

Luckily Josh and I had everything set for the most part so we snagged our stuff we packed for the hospital and headed out once my doctor called back and said to go. Fun fact, “Sweet Child of Mine” came on the radio when the hubs rounded the entrance to the hospital. We were arriving a party of two and will be leaving a party of three.

We went up to the top floor for labor and delivery and the “oh shit this is really happening” feeling was really setting in. I wasn’t having contractions until a whole half hour after my water broke so I was spared that pain until we were actually at the hospital. And boy did those contractions ramp the hell up quickly. Let me tell you, getting an epidural was the best decision I EVER made. While you can’t get up and walk around during labor, they had birthing ball techniques I could still do laying down. But as I was waiting for the anesthesiologist to make her way to my room, there were several things that were running through my mind.

  • Can this be over now?
  • He did this to me (looks over at hubs) how fucking dare him.
  • I hope I don’t do any permanent damage to hubby’s hand since I’m about to break it with each contraction I have.

I won’t get too graphic with the details, but an epidural doesn’t get rid of ALL the pain. No, no. There are rectal contractions that are just as bad almost as regular contractions. Then I was told that since I was progressing and getting closer and closer to 10 cm, I should be delivering my baby before lunchtime. (insert holy shit I don’t know if I’m ready for all this thoughts here).

After enduring some painful contractions, the doctor finally came in and told me that it’s time to finally push and have this baby. After buckling down and four pushes later, I heard the cries of my baby girl entering this world. It was both one of the most surreal, most emotional moments of my life having my daughter being handed to me for the first time. Suddenly nothing else mattered and nothing else dawned on me (i.e. the trauma my nether parts just endured). My healthy baby girl was in my arms. She’s healthy, has all 10 tiny fingers and toes, and she was perfect.

I’m still amazed that I made this tiny little girl and that I have this new role as her mommy. We stayed at the hospital for a couple of days after even though we thankfully didn’t have any complications that couldn’t be managed at home. I was bummed for having to stay at all…(I hate hospitals, they creep me out). We limited visitors to immediate family and before we knew it, it was time to bring our baby girl home.

Like every other first time parent, I was scared. Suddenly we were on our own to decipher what her cries meant…to swaddle her tightly enough, to feed her (breastfeeding is legit a full-time job), and to make sure she’s the happiest/healthiest baby. Luckily we’re blessed to have an amazing support group of family and friends to come and help with SO much as we focus on our little one from people bringing food to my mom (God bless her) coming over just to clean the house and drop off whatever we need. These first few weeks have been so hard, but whenever I look at her sweet little face whether her tiny little lungs are screaming or she smiles so big…it’s worth absolutely every lost hour of sleep and near breakdown. I’d do everything and anything for her. My little peanut has changed my whole world and all I can do is smile as my heart is just bursting with so much love.

 

Cheers,

Prepping for Baby

Prepping for Baby

With all of the wonderful chaos that goes along with prepping to become first-time parents, I wouldn’t change it for anything. It’s the very reason why this blog has been so neglected, and while I had every intention to document my pregnancy journey, some things I’m happy to keep private. I mean really, no one needs to be filled in on how I was hung over the toilet for what seemed like a lifetime during my entire first trimester (technically it was morning sickness…but I also had mid-afternoon and late at night sickness so whatever you want to call it) it sucked. But I know that in the end, all of the aches and pains, gaining a ridiculous amount of weight, sleepless nights, hormonal rages….will all be worth it when I get to finally look my tiny little baby girl in the face. In just two weeks.

Sometimes I feel like prepping for our little one to arrive isn’t half as stressful as other people who love to give their advice. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m all about hearing what parents have to say and what’s worked for them when things got rough, but it’s all about the approach. I feel like every parent has their own style when it comes to raising their kids and I feel like there are some things that I know will not fly with my husband and I. Some parents are just…okay a little batshit crazy.

Then you get into “oh what is your birth plan?” I can tell you now, no essential oil offering or meditation playlist would be able to substitute what an epidural can give me. SIGN ME UP. For the women who want to endure that pain, more power to you. If I have the option to NOT be in as much pain, why not? I think of it as, would you choose to have surgery without anesthesia and feel your insides being torn apart? Nope. No thanks. This of course is a hot topic among many. I’ve learned to respect other opinions, although in turn it’s important to reciprocate. It’s sad when people expect you to respect their opinions, but continue to disrespect yours. Instead of getting too stressed out, I’ve chosen to avoid the negative vibes as much as possible. In the end, as the parents, we have the final say as to what is best for our baby. Amen? Has anyone else felt pressured into doing/not doing something just because of someone else’s lifestyle or beliefs? It’s been over-the-top and rude. The following are the top 10 most annoying unsolicited opinions/actions:

  1. “OMG you’re getting vaccinated and your baby? You do know that it’s just a money scheme right? It’s totally not necessary”
  2. “You’re getting an epidural?! You could become paralyzed!”
  3. “I really hope you’re breastfeeding, otherwise there’s no way your baby will get the proper nutrients.”
  4. “Wait…you’re still working? (insert judgmental face here)
  5. “You’re only taking 6 weeks off for maternity leave? Won’t you miss your baby? That’s going to be so hard.”
  6. “I hope you’re getting sleep now, because you’ll be miserable once the baby is born.”
  7. “Wow you look SO pregnant today!”
  8. *Just walks up and rubs your belly without asking*
  9. “You must be SO miserable being pregnant during the summer.”
  10. *Insert several birth stories and graphic details here*

via GIPHY

I just can’t. It’s amazing how I’ve kept my hormones in check as much as I have and for this long. I should get a medal. Sorry, but I’m perfectly aware of ALL the possibilities that I might face when it comes to giving birth from a torn vag to possibly getting cut open to hemorrhaging among other scary health issues. Take a pill  (because I can’t) and calm yourself. You’re not helping anyone.

As a mom-to-be it’s things like this that dads don’t really have to put up with or bother with as much. And let me tell you, there are two types of moms: working moms and stay-at-home moms. DRASTIC difference. There are so many challenges that I will be facing being a working mom, but at the end of the day, I will be setting a great example for my baby girl. Will it be hard? No shit it will be. I’m sure I’ll cry the whole way to work while she gets to spend quality time with her Mimi, snacking, and napping like a little peaceful baby should. It’s what’s necessary to give her the best life possible. And because this momma is only going to give her the best. Sacrifices must be made. It will be hard, but nothing worth while ever came easy right? Pretty sure that’s what they say.

I’m now at the 38-week mark and she can come ANY time now. I’m really praying she does. I want to see that cute little face, hold that tiny little hand, and hold her close to me. The nursery is pretty much all set for her arrival too. Luigi is even trying to be patient, but it’s wearing thin. He can’t wait to meet his tiny human.

While I’ll miss feeling her kicks and not having to share her with anyone else, I’m ready to be not pregnant and to sport that mommy title. This will be one hell of an adventure.

Cheers!

Life is Sweet

Life is Sweet

Well how about that, it’s well into 2018 and this is officially my first post of the year. Gym & Tonic has taken a bit of a break…in every way, shape and form. In December in the midst of all the holiday craziness, I found out that my life as I knew it was about to change forever.

Yep, several tests later, (you know just to make sure) those two lines couldn’t have been more clear. I was pregnant. Or you know, when another test just spells it out for you.

The hubs and I have been talking about it for quite a bit and it only took a month of taking zero preventative measures for it to happen. Aside from being the happiest person ever, I feel blessed. Beyond blessed. Real talk, I thought it would take a lot longer or even kind of a challenge since I’ve been on the pill for so long. It was a scary thought. And speaking of scary, I didn’t know if I was even ready to be a mom. But when I found out that I could possibly be pregnant, I couldn’t want anything more. After it was confirmed with my doctor, it’s crazy how much love I felt for that little bean that was showing up on the ultrasound. Shit just got REAL.

So then started the challenge of keeping it from our immediate family until Christmas. We wanted to surprise them with our exciting news on Christmas morning. Not to mention get through all of the holiday craziness without a glass of wine in my hand. We got these custom ornaments for our parents and wrapped them up.

As Christmas approached, I was bursting at the seams to yell our news from the rooftops. Keeping this a secret was one of the hardest things we had to do, but we managed to surprise the crap out of our families and everyone was ELATED. <3 We waited to spread the news to everyone else until later, but now that everyone does know, it’s such a relief! And I love how the tip-off was that I was drinking water and didn’t have a wine glass in my hand at family events. Hey, this girl loves her wine #noshame.

Now I can be that annoying mom-to-be complaining about how I felt like death for the entire first trimester (thanks morning sickness) and how 85% of my wardrobe is already obsolete because the only thing that made me feel like a functioning human being during that time was carbs. All the carbs. Bagels, croissants, toast, you name it…if it was a type of bread, I had it. And the gym? HA! The only exercise move I was doing was squatting over the toilet to dry-heave or vomit. And yet the craziest thing was despite how awful I felt for those many weeks, every time I saw our growing bean on the ultrasound, it was all worth it without a doubt. But seriously, those other moms who didn’t experience morning sickness at all or maybe felt a little off for a couple of weeks…oh how I envy you and I will simply say it’s not fair!!!

Fast forward to the start of my second trimester, this is supposed to be the “honeymoon phase” right? Yeah well that was a big fat lie. If someone so much as sneezes my way, I get sick. BUT cold aside, I do actually feel “normal” and I can start eating like a somewhat normal human being again so I don’t end up gaining 100+ pounds. Yeesh. The struggle. My current cravings:

  • PB&J sandwiches on sourdough
  • Cheeseburgers
  • Cereal (the sugar-filled crap that were staples in every family with kids) i.e. Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Frosted Mini Wheats, Frosted Flakes etc.
  • Anything with cinnamon
  • Orange juice

During my first trimester, I was ALL about the hot chocolate. I couldn’t get enough of it. Sweets in general were my go-to. Now, I need to calm myself and not give in to so many cravings. Or at least try?

Being a soon-to-be parent is stressful, but I’m so happy to have amazing family by my side. We got early testing done that revealed the gender and we’re happy to announce that we’re expecting a baby girl!

Yep, hubs will officially be outnumbered! I don’t know how some couples can wait. I get the whole “I want to be surprised” thing, but this girl is a planner. And I just HAD to know. I was going bonkers knowing the results were in and I couldn’t peak at all until our little gender reveal party. Yes we had a small one, don’t roll your eyes please. I know people think they’re obnoxious, but deal with it. 😀

 

Cheers!

Live Your Best Life

Live Your Best Life

Why hello there August! July was filled with music and travel and it was pretty much amazing. August has a lot to live up to. It’s been about two years since I took a whole week off since I started my job almost 2 years ago now. Crazy right? I have so much going on, leaving work for that long gave me extreme anxiety. But as my director told me, “don’t worry…the place most likely won’t burn down while we’re both gone at the same time.” So I took a deep breath before I left work, activated my out of office response to my email and completely disconnected for a whole week. The hubs and I meet up with his side of the family way up north (in the middle of nowhere) and rent a bunch of cabins along the lake. It’s serene, it’s peaceful, it gets me back in touch with what really matters.

Living the cabin life is one of my favorite things and really, it could save me from my shopping addiction. It’s a place where the average person probably thinks Burberry is a type of fruit and Gucci is a type of fish. The cabin life is all about nature, slowing down, and revitalizing the soul. While we were on vacay, we usually come prepared with our own food and I always make sure to bring my own coffee (his fam doesn’t drink it….that’s fine I don’t have to share! :D)

I woke up pretty much every morning and was met with the calming sounds of the lake and started the day out with a run. Mind you, I was paranoid beyond belief. Being so out in the middle of nowhere and among many trails and woods…there are bears. There are many things that ran through my mind every morning as I started my run in these parts:

  • It’s too quiet…why is it so quiet…?
  • I’m going to die for sure.
  • Isn’t this a scene from Deliverance?
  • OMG what was THAT noise?! *jumps 10 ft up in the air
  • I should really steady my pace…what if I come across a bear and have to run for my life?
  • If I am being chased down by a huge bear…I should zig-zag right? That will confuse it and slow it down right? Oh please God let that be true.
  • I’m so stupid for running out here alone.
  • All of this extra adrenaline running through my body is doing amazing things for my pace.
  • Maybe I should run with a machete next time…what would Leo do?

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  • No, I don’t think I could bitch-slap a bear. I’d die.
  • I’m making these hills my bitch.
  • Next time I need a running partner. Survival of the fittest?
  • If I got mauled by a bear, how long would it take for anyone to find my body?
  • YES I finished my run and lived another morning!!!! Okay now to take a million selfies until one is sufficient.

What can I say? Take a city girl out of her environment and of course she instantly thinks a bear is going to take her out. I mean that’s a totally rational way to think right? I would say that I kept up with the healthy life while I vacay but who am I kidding? There was A LOT of day drinking going on. Aside from the vodka and wine though I was totally on track. MyFitnessPal doesn’t need to know that I totally fucking lied when I just logged 2 glasses of sangria….what really happened is between my liver and me.

But the hubs of course…he was on his A game. He didn’t have ANYTHING to drink (what a weirdo) and really I couldn’t have been more impressed. With all of the late nights of EVERYONE snacking on shit, he barely had any of it. We hiked around Copper Falls that was an hour out from where we were staying, but it was TOTALLY worth it. The hike was amazing.

And the hubs…bless his soul…while I was cursing myself out for snacking too much the other night…he snapped this pic of my leg gains. He was all, “See? Shut up.”

When we got back from vacay, I returned to work completely recharged…but totally not ready to check my thousands of emails. (It took 3 hours to completely get caught up on emails alone).

The week we returned, fortunately I had more to look forward to than getting caught up at work. I had THREE concerts lined up. There’s nothing like breaking up the week like rocking to Sir Paul McCartney with the hubs and good friends. I saw him in 2012 and he absolutely did not disappoint for round 2. Beatles music will always have a special place in my heart.

He of course brought the house down with “Live and Let Die” fireworks and all and closed with his classic “Hey Jude.” My friend and I vowed that we both needed to get Beatle lyric tattoos.

Concert #2 was Dierks Bentley. I love this man’s music. I wasn’t always a country fan. In fact…I hated it entirely. Now, it’s almost all I listen to since it’s like a whole new world of music has opened up to me. I think what really did it was this transition the whole genre is doing into sounding more like pop music. Anyway, once I was introduced to a number of hits…I can’t get enough! Oh and I failed to mention that before vacay, my sis and I went to go see Sam Hunt and Maren Morris. UH-mazing. It was so much fun and of course we sang the shit out of every song like crazed people.

By the third concert, (Jimmy Eat World and Incubus) I was totally concerted out. Both of us got a bottle of rose and picked out a spot on the lawn until it was time to tap into our inner teenager. #roseallday

In addition to all of the summer fun, I had to keep my half marathon training in mind as well. I’ve got my last half marathon of the year coming up in late September. So far, I’m not going to lie…I’ve been kicking some ass. I have the hubs to thank too for being so motivated with his fitness goals. It makes me keep my shit together.

With the relatively mild summer, it’s helped me get my longer runs in on the weekends. I’ve also been trying NOT to eat the whole damn fridge after training. The struggle is real. I hope everyone is having a great summer!!! As for me, it’s time to train HARD.

 

Cheers!

 

 

 

Just Do It.

Just Do It.

No, I’m not talking about Nike. So many times, we talk and talk and talk about what we’re going to do, what we want to do, yet we stay in the same place. Because well…we’re either lazy or just complacent. For me, other things just get in the way of my goals and I lose sight of my priorities. HELLO this needs to stop. After my annual review at work (which went amazingly well) it really turns on that light of self-reflection. What do I really want? What am I really working toward? Where do I want to be in five years personally and professionally? Do I really want to binge on Netflix and drink that fourth glass of wine? All important questions. It might also have to do with the fact that I’m approaching 30. (Inhale….exhale….).

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So far, 2017 is going pretty well. (Knock on every piece of wood). We’re only a few months in, but I’ve had quite a few accomplishments:

  • I made the conscious decision to not register for as many races this year. Not because I don’t love running anymore (let’s not get crazy) but really, it’s insane how much I’ve spent on race registrations. Even more importantly, I wanted to stop training so much. I want to get up and say “hey yeah let’s run 4 miles today” or “hmmm I really want to run 8 today since it’s so damn nice out.” Abiding by a training schedule is just really damn annoying sometimes. It’s about time I start running for me again and not for a T-shirt and bling. Did I just say that? Don’t tell anyone…
  • I’ve been getting great feedback from the big bosses at work. My job continues to challenge me and push my limits and that’s what really makes me thrive. I love it there and I can’t wait to see what the future holds. Sometimes I feel like I might have a mental break because of everything I’m working on, but…whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger right? Haha.
  • Cutting carbs. Yes, this is an accomplishment. I’ve been avoiding bread, rice, pasta like the plague. Does this mean I don’t want to constantly go to my local bakery and stuff a giant loaf of french bread in my face? Absolutely not. And celebrating birthdays make it especially difficult. Can I get a high-five for only taking a bite out of this red velvet cupcake and not devouring the whole thing?

  • I’ve been more aware of my needs over my wants. This has to do with a lot including everything from my diet to avoiding overspending on things. And HOLLLLAAAA for finishing paying off medical bills from before you had awesome health insurance! #adultingproblems.
  • It’s a work in progress, but I’ve downsized my closet. Of course the hubs doesn’t notice since he’s always only had just a sliver of our huge walk-in closet….BUT there’s progress. I’ve reinstated rules like if I haven’t worn something in over a year, it gets donated or if I bring in a new piece of clothing, that means something else needs to move on out! The struggle is real. I feel like a hoarder when it comes to clothes. Someone please help. I have more sports bras than Serena Williams.

This weekend was prime outdoorsy weather though. This girl is ready for SPRING. Bring it!! On Saturday I went to my favorite boxing class and Sunday morning was spent running around the neighborhood and racking up those miles. It felt amaze-balls. However, what did not feel so amaze-balls was how it went from coldgear weather to tank weather by the time I ended my run. #runnerproblems.

Other exciting things that happened include me needing new glasses because…well when you get old, you slowly go blind. I of course took a million years picking out the perfect frames. I knew that I wanted to go bold and yet that didn’t seem to trim down the selection by too much. One of the receptionists there was a huge help and I walked away with some new frames whenever I want to opt out of wearing contacts.  I ended up with these Coach frames:

Now that we’ve established that I should never quit my day job and become a model, let’s move on to some goals. I’ve started to write up some ideas for what might be a series of short stories or a book. I’ve gotten the little push/motivation I need to start and I’m excited. I’ve also decided that whenever I wonder if I’m ready for kids, I should remind myself how I feel going to Costco on a weekend. How’s that for a lane change? But really, Costco turns into a zoo come Saturday/Sunday afternoon. Can’t I just get my army-sized pack of apples and chicken in peace?

Now that I’ve meal prepped for the week, and caught up on some much-needed reading, I’m set to start this week! I’ve been reading The Culture Code: An Ingenious Way to Understand Why People Around the World Live and Buy as They Do. I’m pretty excited to dive even deeper into this book. A review will come soon enough!

As for Sunday night…well…this is as productive as it got.

 

Cheers to a new week!

UnF*ck Yourself…at least by 30

UnF*ck Yourself…at least by 30

I’m reading this book called UnF*ck Yourself and I have to say, it really has changed my way of thinking. I’m impressed. Maybe it’s because this guy uses profanity to get his point across, but it really does make a lot of sense. I.e. His concept of willing and unwilling. You feel more empowered with your decisions and your life if you realize that you are either willing or unwilling rather than saying, “I can’t.” Try it, it really does give you an increased sense of control over yourself and holding yourself more responsible. For example, “I can’t clean out my closet that looks like a tornado hit it” versus “I am unwilling to spend half of a weekend cleaning out said closet that looks like a tornado hit it.” See? It’s not that I can’t, I’m perfectly capable of cleaning it, I am just unwilling. Sure not a lot of people are want to hold themselves accountable for things, but welll….#adulting.

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I’ve really been trying to adult more. Ever since it really hit me that yes, this is my last year in my 20’s, I’ve been making this transition from “getting your shit together” to “yes, I have my shit together.” Easier said than done. I don’t know about you, but I feel like your 20’s are when you’re expected to make a fuck ton of mistakes, learn a lot, do a lot of stupid things – but hey that’s okay and expected because you’re in your 20’s. NOW once you hit your 30’s, you better slow your roll and not wear all of that polyester shit from Forever 21. According to your parents, you should be either in a serious relationship or married and if you’re married thinking about having babies. (Gold star for checking two out of three off?)

Oh and one other adulty thing I’ve been getting the hang of is traveling for business purposes. Finally, I can join the club of collecting points and hopefully one day gaining platinum gold first business class status or some other obnoxious priority boarding status that clearly brands you as better than anyone else. Like really, step aside less worldly travelers. Until then, I’m among said less worldly travelers. My most recent trip was to sunny Florida. Although it was a quick trip, I was able to enjoy a beautiful sunset at Clearwater Beach for the first time.

Nothing like enjoying some wine and enjoying a sunset like that after a long day of networking and attending a conference. Before I knew it, I was back on a plane, (hell yes I got an aisle seat with no one sitting next to me) however it took FOREVER to get off the plane. Minus one gold star for my non-adulting moment for internally freaking out and wanting to slink over seats because people are just so damn slow. In fact, due to my dramatically increased travel schedule, let’s go into my top 5 things that annoy the shit out of me when traveling:

1. People not even aware of any TSA security measures. (Yes woman, your boots with a million buckles on them will set off the scanner. That huge Fiji water bottle? Chug that shit before you get through security!!! NOT ALLOWED.
2. To the person who brings the smelliest seafood-type dish on the plane. Just…fuck you.
3. Small talk when you sit next to another person on a plane…preferably keep it at a minimum…especially if it’s a 6 a.m. flight. Last time, dude decided to ask a million questions when I really just wanted to zone out and listen to the new Ed Sheeran album.
4. Shrieking children. Let me explain. Yes, I do feel REALLY bad for the parents whose children are just freaking out, flying for the first time, and are just acting out like little monsters despite what they do. HOWEVER, I’ve been in situations where the parent does NOTHING. Absolutely NOTHING to control the child who is freaking out. Like they were just crossing their fingers that they’ll just tire themselves out and just focus on their Nutella snack pack for the rest of the trip. Mindblowing. Please no.
5. To the flight attendants who bitch you out when you have your small wristlet out for a second so you can scan your boarding pass and they count it as a third bag and the third bag MUST be consolidated into your carry-on. Chill the fuck out.

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Let’s not forget about the person next to you who is sneezing, coughing, and wheezing all over the place too. It’s like when someone in the office coughs once and you yell obscenities in your head because it’s inevitable that you’re going to get sick too. However, this instance is a lot scarier because who the hell knows a. what they have and b. where they came from. For all you know, you’re one cough away from contracting some deadly airborne disease. Maybe I should stop watching Apocalypse-type movies.

For the past week I’ve been sick, although not from contracting some deadly, Ebola-grade virus. It was only a fever/strep throat/severe cold combination. Even worse, I couldn’t taste anything for days. I mean, why even eat? There’s no point. The second I can’t taste my coffee in the morning, just end me.

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Now, as of today, I can actually smell/taste things again and it is so glorious. Now the goal is to not gain any of the weight back that I’ve lost during my sickness. I at least owe myself that much right? #lifegoals.

Cheers to starting a new week without being a congested mess! Hooray!

Confessions of a Runner

Confessions of a Runner

As a runner, someone who attempts to maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle, sometimes you fall off of that wagon. Don’t lie, it happens to the best of us right? So I feel the need to post some confessions, especially since it’s been so long since I’ve updated!

I confess I ate cold pizza for breakfast and then ran 7 miles. See? Balance. Rock it, own it. We’re all human and living means pizza for breakfast sometimes. It’s also called shark week.

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I confess I’ve been so consumed and stressed with this huge project for work, I thank my lucky stars that I don’t stress eat. My stress has now turned against my fat stores and I’ve randomly lost 5lbs. I’m now one bad stomach flu away from my goal weight. #silverlining

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I confess it looks like a bomb went off in my closet. Sports bras and moisture wicking clothing are everywhere. #runnerproblems. Since I HAVE been way too stressed out, I’ve been forcing myself to find the time to workout and get a run in. Sometimes there just doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day, but after just one hour of sweating it out, I feel a million times better. Now if only my laundry could just….do itself.

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I confess that I didn’t really freak out when I turned 29 on the 8th. I feel like I’m really satisfied with where I am in my life right now. I feel like just within this past year, I’ve accomplished so much – especially with my career. There’s no question I know the perfect balance of living my adult life and staying in touch with my childhood. See Exhibit A.

I confess that with said birthday gift cards, I only added to my ridiculous collection of running/workout clothes. It’s the best when you can super coupon your birthday promo codes with President’s Day promos. Hollllaaa.

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I confess I use the “oh it’s okay I’ll just run it off” excuse so many times. I got a box of gamble chocolates, a Starbucks giftcard and beautiful roses from the hubs. Can anyone guess which of the three lasted the longest?

I confess I doubled up on cardio each day this weekend because of how nice it was outside. I was running around in a tank on my runs in FEBRUARY. WHAT?! Unheard of in Chicagoland. My bod is just soaking up ALL of that sunshine. Everyone was out walking around, riding their bikes, it was great. Winter, sorry but you can just stay away.

This weekend really was the best. I went out every chance I got and spent time with family. Life is good when you make it a point to stop the chaos and take care of yourself physically and mentally.

Cheers!

Fit Focused

Fit Focused

Week two has officially gone by of my master plan to tone up and I’m actually 4lbs down. My strategy is to be very mentally aware of my goals. That’s it. Everything I do, I think about whether or not it’s conducive to my goals. Is skipping a workout going to get me one step closer to my goal? Nope. Is stuffing my face rather than eating until I’m satisfied going to work in my favor? Not a chance in hell….although it’s been hard leaving delicious food on my plate. Things that HAVE been working are things like:

  • Logging my food/water intake on MyFitnessPal (and no I’m not a fan of keeping track of every single calorie, but it really helps you make smarter decisions based on your food intake throughout the day.
  • Not snacking after dinner. Who knew this would be so hard? I workout later at night sometimes so I don’t know about you, but after an intense strength training session I could eat the whole fridge.
  • Don’t compromise. This is when the whole “mental toughness” thing comes in right? Sure, you can tell yourself that you can always workout tomorrow…but you should ALSO workout today. The common myth is that it takes about 21 days to form a habit, so why break the healthy habit of getting your workout and not working on your goals? You should never compromise what you want most.
  • Build your mental toughness with some reading material. I’ve stocked my Kindle app full of some good reads that got some great reviews including: Un*fuck Yourself: Get out of your head and into your life, The Universe Has Your Back: Transform fear to faith, Better Than Before, and You Are a Badass.
  • Focus on the journey, not the destination. This is really important. It’s a bit stressful to think about how your overall goal is to lose 20-25lbs by the end of May. Working on losing 1-2lbs each week and being mindful of how I’m going to keep myself in check week by week is a lot easier to handle.

I’m even more ecstatic that my boxing classes have been moved to a later time during the week so I have a better chance of making it after work. Can we get a heck yes? I can already feel the results of my increased strength training. Overall, I just feel like my energy is cranked throughout my whole workout rather than burning out hard toward the end. Saturday morning I was amped for my boxing class and then since it was SO nice out, I really didn’t have any choice but to go for a run around the neighborhood #shitrunnersdo. I swear, Chicagoland hasn’t seen some sunshine in weeks AND it almost reached 60 degrees in JANUARY. It had to be done. Feeling strong and the sunshine is definitely giving me that extra kick in the pants! Err…leggings. 😉

Sunday was another run-derful morning! It ended up being a morning every runner dreams of. I felt like I could have kept running at top speed for another 7 miles. It’s days like these that REALLY keep me going. Not to mention that since I’ve been amping up my strength training, I’ve been noticing that I’ve been burning more cals per running or workout sesh. Although let me tell ya, saying no to stuffing my face with pizza on several occasions has been SO HARD.

This weekend as a whole was a very empowering one. Over 1 million women came together in every major city across the country to unite and rally for women’s rights. I’m so proud and my heart and soul is filled with so much pride. It was the best demonstration of uniting peacefully and for such an important cause.

This week I’m going to continue to be on my A game. Sunday I’ll be flying out to Vegas for a work conference so those liquid calories will be EVERYWHERE….and tempting. I mean…who goes to Vegas and skips out on fancy martinis and wine? Unfortunately I can’t fly out a day earlier to catch Britney’s show. I mean, if Britney can get her shit back together after 2007, then I can certainly hit my goals. And remember, everyone has bad days, but know that you’ll get through them. Do the robot in your car if you have to. Happy Monday!!!

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Cheers!!

Goal Digger

Goal Digger

Hello blog world! We’re almost one month into 2017! How are you doing with those resolutions? Goals? I’d like to take some time out to say that I’ve been more determined than ever to achieve my fitness goals and to categorize my needs over what are just wants. Like I said in my previous post, one huge goal I have for myself is to stop spending ruthlessly and be more mindful of my spending no matter how small the amount is. I’ve noticed even just a month in, that I now have more to spend on things that I NEED and to lead the healthier lifestyle that I want. I live for my boxing classes and if my budget didn’t allow for it anymore….well…just no.

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We all have those things that keep us on our A game, keep us sane, totally relieve us of all the stress that the world causes us…working out is totally the answer to ALL of that. It’s my time to think about NOTHING else but me. It’s actually when I think of my best ideas, my next step forward etc. However, although I know that working out does all of this for me mentally and physically…sometimes it’s really really hard to workout after a long day at work if I didn’t get up early enough to workout that morning. So here are some things I do/say to myself to get me motivated:

1. Why am I doing this?
2. I’m letting myself down if I don’t go.
3. I know that I’m going to regret not going, not if I do.
4. If I go, I’m one step closer to achieving my goals.
5. Working out will make me stronger.
6. If I don’t go, I’m only hurting myself.
7. Going will make me feel good. Period.
8. If I go, all of this stress will melt right off of me.
9. I’m robbing myself of a better lifestyle.
10. Just go! You have 24 hours in a day. You can spend one on yourself.

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Or some other things that I do is put on a goal dress/ piece of clothing that I might have in the closet. That’ll always make me slap my Nikes on faster than anything else. Also, I have way too much activewear in my closet to NOT workout. Also I love Jimmy Johns way too much not workout. And wine. One 6oz glass of wine is about 120 cals.

Even Luigi is a carbovore. But really though, it’s been a work in progress cutting down the carbs and amping up the protein. I’ve been adding more strength training days each week and my diet really needs to reflect that.

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The hardest part is telling that little voice in your head to shut the fuck up when it says, “yes you are really hungry and sure you can have a piece of pizza…or three. YES do have a chip…A CHIP? Yeah that won’t happen. How about half the bag? This little voice is the main reason why I need to be mentally aware of my goals 24/7. Being a part of a great running group (RunJunKeEs), subscribing to health and fitness magazines to constantly be conscious of leading a healthy lifestyle, going to fitness classes, and talking to like-minded people who are fitness-focused are all ways that I’ve set myself up to lose another 25lbs by this summer.

I’m totally in this….and Luigi has my back.

And trolling my selfies for life.

Cheers!!

Hello 2017

Hello 2017

It’s  a new year. Finally. There’s something so refreshing about feeling like you get a do-over. Like, 2016 while it had a lot of rough moments, a lot of pivotal things happened that were life-changing. I landed a new job that I absolutely love. That in itself is so rewarding. I remember that while we rung in 2016, I told myself that I need to focus on getting a new job. The old gig was getting to be so toxic in every aspect of my life and that is no bueno. If you think about it, you spend most of your time wherever you work. Accepting that new job in March was the best thing I did for not only my mental health, but for my relationship and well-being. But really, did anyone else feel like Ronda Rousey at the end of this match by the end of 2016?

RIP Ronda Rousey

What a great lead-in to recapping my NYE. I started off the day with an amazing boxing class. It’s one of the many reasons why I look forward to my Saturday mornings. While I didn’t pull a Rousey and actually kept my fists up, I went to pivot and as I did, I rolled the shit out of my ankle. I didn’t think it was that bad at first since the pain eventually subsided, but as the day went on and we were out to dinner and listening to some great live music…my foot was THROBBING. I was near tears. So the the night went from this…

to this…

I felt like my whole foot was being squeezed in a vice. It sucked. Way to get one last “fuck you” in 2016. Well-played. Now I can’t even run in this unseasonably warm weather to top it all off. Luckily I did take advantage of it while I could. I just can’t wait until the bruising wears off. Hopefully faster than Mariah Carey’s career after her NYE performance.

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But SO 2017, how about it? Does anyone make New Year resolutions anymore? I read a great article about why this columnist didn’t like resolutions and I can’t help but totally agree. Sure, starting a new year marks a new beginning, and maybe a new you…but does it really have to be the only time when change can happen? If you want to lose weight, be more financially responsible, purge all of this clothes that you’re not wearing in your closet, or improve your life in any way, why wait until December 31st to make that happen? So while we’re all inundated with the Weight Watchers and Match.com commercials, just know that if you recognize that a change needs to be made in your life, there’s no other time than the present to make that happen! Think of it as giving yourself a headstart on everyone else. 😉

Others are against resolutions because they think it’s just setting themselves up to fail. Well that just sounds a little too negative. Make realistic goals for yourself that you know you can achieve if you put some effort in. I.e. cut out eating pizza for breakfast to cut out some cals, save some more money by cutting out some Starbucks visits and making your own coffee at home, donate one bag of clothes each week to Good Will. See? Small changes. They’re easier to digest and less overwhelming. The key is to stay focused. Here is a list of things/goals I have for myself in 2017:

  • Tone up and add more muscle to the bod.
  • Prioritize what I need versus what I want. (I tend to confuse the two a lot.) Do I NEED that $100 sweater? Probably not.
  • Chop my credit card debt in half. This is totally doable as long as I keep myself in check with list item #2.
  • Remove toxic people from my life. (This is always on my list and will remain that way.) I mean, why continue to have them in your life if they’re doing nothing but causing you or others pain/stress? No thank you. Bye, Felicia.
  • Care less about what others think, and focus on YOU.
  • Stress less. Last year was very stressful due to family health concerns. I need to make it a priority to stress less and find ways to lower it. Stress can do some awful things to you and impact your relationships if you allow it. Identifying those things that make you de-stress is key.
  • Renovate. I’d love to make some renovations to the house this year and make this place a little more “us.” Since there was so much we HAD to do before we moved in, it didn’t leave a lot of room for us to make any cosmetic changes.
  • Travel somewhere new. Usually we go on vacation with the hubs’ family to the same place every summer. I would love to go somewhere new in addition to that. There’s plenty of the world I still need to see!!
  • Always keep in mind how blessed I am. This is important. I think a lot of us take what we have for granted. Whenever I’m having a bad day, I remind myself that someone is always there for me, I have a wonderful roof on my head, I have food in the fridge, I love my job, and my family and friends are a great support system when I need them.
  • Reach my reading challenge goal on GoodReads. I unfortunately didn’t even come close to my goal last year, when I usually do. I feel like reading allows me to be a better writer and gets the creative juices flowing. All good things!
  • And finally, START my first book. This is huge. This is the one big thing that is really intimidating to me, but I’ve pushed it aside for so long…I need to start.

Sure I can go on forever about the goals I have set for myself, but this is a good list that will sum up my 2017. Do you have a list you’ve set for yourself? Whatever it may be, go for it. It’s never too late!

Cheers!