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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

It's that time of year...for gifts and a giveaway!

So I'm running these days, but I am still under 15 miles per week because I have to take a day or two off between each run because my ankle is a little sore after every run. I have been very patient and always err on the side of caution, but my patience is running out so I finally went back to my doctor and he recommended a few weeks of physical therapy. I've been to physical therapy twice, and it seems to be helping. I ran five miles yesterday, and my ankle is feeling pretty good today!

I'm hoping my Christmas gift to myself can be a double digit run. So keep your fingers crossed!

Speaking of Christmas gifts, are you ready for some more gift ideas? Because in all my shopping adventures, I have come up with a few more gifts for the runners in your life. And because there are some unfortunate souls who have not yet found the gift of running, I included some things for them as well.

For the Non-Runner in Your Life

Maybe a fitness tracker will put that special someone on the road to running. Just maybe. Either way, the Soleus Go Fitness Watch is a winner.

And because the world seems to be All. Things. Star. Wars. There's this shirt. Or you can go with the Dark Side with this one instead.

And basically just because I saw it over the weekend and fell in love with it, there's this purse.

For the Runner in Your Life 

First, I LOVE my Journal Menu running planner and think any runner on the planet would love one. They are customized and have great information tracking pages, including goal tracking, race planning, body measurements, personal records, nutrition guides, pace charts and more.

Then there's this vest.  I have the same one from two years ago, and it is one of my favorite things to wear in the winter!! It is perfect for cold runs because it keeps my torso warm, but I don't get too hot like I do with a full coat/jacket sometimes. It has the right amount of pockets in all the right places. And it comes in five colors. I promise you or whoever you gift it to will love it!

And everyone loves having their running information at their wrist. So pick up a new Garmin for the one you love. There's something for everyone, whether it's my personal favorite the Forerunner 15 or something a little more high tech like the Garmin 225.

And since it's that time of year when we are all burned out from shopping and need to rest our tired legs, who couldn't use a pair of compression socks or sleeves?!? SLS3 has my favorites and they are offering free holiday shipping. Plus you can get 45% using the code: BLOG45 at checkout!

Also because I love my readers, I am hosting a Rafflecopter giveaway for a pair of SLS3 compression sleeves or socks of your choice! Winner will be announced December 24th. What better way to kick of the Christmas Eve festivities?!?

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

I'm just over here trying to make your Christmas shopping easier...

What better way to kick off the month than with a few perfect gift ideas? I am actually almost finished shopping, which I'm pretty sure is a record for how early I have this much finished. So I figured it is my duty to help you out.

I've picked out three perfect gifts for the runner in your life (or yourself, because it's always nice to treat yourself) and three gifts for pretty much anyone else on your list.

 First there's the Legend Loop Armband.

Here's what the makers of Legend have to say about it: "We believe it's the thinnest, lightest and fastest running armband in the world. Legend Loop Armband is also unlike all others. Thin, light and fully featured, distinctive yet not overpowering; it's the perfect addition to your next run or workout. Not to mention it just fits; whatever size your arms are whilst the armband also secures your smartphone regardless of size or model."

I have always been afraid to strap my phone to my arm. It's annoying enough in the pocket of my tights or jacket, so I figured it would be even worse on my arm. But I actually didn't even notice it was there. And that says a lot since phones are not small these days. I was also afraid my phone might not fit because it seems like EVERYTHING is made to fit iPhones and I'm one of the cool kids who has (and loves) a Samsung. For the record, my phone fit perfectly.

Second, there's this running shirt that I recently added to my running clothes wardrobe. I love it so much, I went back and got it in a second color!
The third thing every runner should have is Smart Wool socks. I LOVE mine. I actually wear them all year because they have different thicknesses and they never ever give me blisters. And in the winter, they keep my toes perfectly warm. I have the exact pair on the right and they are the perfect winter running socks!
The first thing for your "everyone" list is a BOOY (pronounced Booo-eeee). It's a "Tablet Lounge" that adapts to any surface. Mine should be arriving any day, and I can't wait to use it. My girls practically destroy my case every time they borrow my Ipad, so this should make it a little easier for them (and me!) to use my tablet comfortably.
It has a magnetic attachment and comes in two colors of leather, brown and white. It is live on Kickstarter, and there are still early bird units available at $60. After that it goes to $80 and then $100 (MSRP $119).

The next thing anyone would love is a new pair of Chucks. I love mine and have them in two colors to make sure I can wear them with pretty much anything in my closet.
And last but not least, who wouldn't love a Moose Mug? Even if you aren't a National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation fanatic, you can appreciate its awesomeness!
Are there any "must-have's" on your Christmas list this year? Merry December 1st, btw!!!

Monday, November 23, 2015

You had me at pumpkin pie.

It's time to break out the maternity pants. And pass them around because Thanksgiving with all it yummy goodness is just days away and then it's full swing into Christmas. And the closer December 25th gets, the busier life seems to be. At least for me.

This is what prompted one of my most recent internet searches. Because I am still only running every other day, I do a lot of ellipticizing and cycling. But there isn't always time to fit 45 or even 30 minutes into my day. And for some reason it is easier to find the time to run than do other kinds of cardio (wink-wink). Maybe that means I'm a runner.

Anyhow...that search I was talking about was for workouts that don't take much time but that will make me feel like I really got my workout on and my heart pumping. Since I'm fairly sure I'm not the only busy person out there, I thought I'd save you the time of searching out some shorter but killer (aka effective, calorie torching) workouts and share the ones I like with you.

Now that you are prepared with a way to burn those Thanksgiving calories, I can properly share the abundance of funny (and too often true) Thanksgiving memes I found when looking for our friend Joey in his maternity pants:

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Darth Vadar, Tomato Soup, Running Tights and Other Randomness

It is officially running tights weather. I love the snow, but I hate being cold.

I don't like tomatoes, but tomato soup is one of my favorite foods.

Life is full of contradictions. 

Just some randomness for your Thursday.

Another thing you may not know about me...

I don't mind getting up early, but I like some time to wake up before I have to invest in human interaction, especially conversation. This couldn't be more true:

In other randomness, Scott turned on this station the other day:

And it ABSOLUTELY rocks. My girls were in complete awe of my dance moves. I even busted out the moon walk for them. If you need a little pick-me-up, head over to Pandora and spend some time with MC Hammer radio.

We spent some time last weekend trying to figure out what to wear for our upcoming family pictures. Scott thought this was appropriate for the timing of the pictures:

Hey, at least it would make coordination easy. You can't got wrong with black and white! If you're dying to add that to your wardrobe, we saw it at H&M. But I think THIS ONE would be an even better addition to any wardrobe!!! 

If you aren't following along with my #30DaysOfThanks on Instagram, you should be. And I'd love a to hear what you're thankful for, so if you are doing a month of gratitude somewhere on social media, let me know so I can follow along!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Life should have more refunds.

So I have clearly been listening to Christmas music already. It happened occasionally in the weeks leading up to Halloween but became all I listen to once Halloween was officially (and thankfully) over. It's extra nice that two radio stations are already playing Christmas music 24/7!

My question is...when can I start wearing my holiday/Christmas shirts? I got a new one the other day, and it is begging to be worn. I think I might need to order this one and add it to my collection as well!

Which reminds me of this...

And since we're on the subject of funny (but true) things I've seen this week, here's this #truth as well.

I'm up to running 35 straight minutes, which usually ends up being a little over four miles. So I'm running between eight and twelve miles per week right now. Not the 40+ miles it once was. But I do have 40 minutes on tap for Saturday.

However, my ankle felt a little off yesterday, so I'll be babying it today (lots of ice and stretching and some time on the bike) and will reevaluate tomorrow morning before I head out. The stress fracture healed like a champ but that darn tendon just insists on getting my attention on a regular basis still.

There is such a thing as negative attention. Someone should tell it.

Which randomly reminds me of this...

And then there's this. Any excuse to eat cake, am I right?

And since one of the reasons I love The Great Gatsby is that it takes place in the 20s means this spoke to me...

Happy Friday. Have a fantastic weekend!!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

It's basically Friday.

My girls don't have school tomorrow, so it feels like a Friday. And Fridays make me happy.

Here are some other things that make me happy:

That my girls, Super Girl and Rainbow Unicorn (from Inside Out), had an awesome Halloween.

That this movie comes out this weekend.

That I get to focus on all the things I'm thankful for a little extra this month.

That this is true.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

A life lesson...and other pics from my phone.

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but sometimes a little insider information helps it make even more sense. So that's what you're getting with all these pictures from my phone that reveal what's been going on in my (and my little family's) life lately.

I'm up to 25 minutes on my runs. And still pain free.

Sometimes I multi-task while cooking. Boiling eggs for breakfast, dinner in the crockpot, and roasting veggies for lunch.

Another batch of pumpkin muffins. Baked and consumed.

Lots of pics of peeps dissolving in glasses for Grace's science fair project.

Pumpkin ice cream. 

This. Shirt.

And a good life lesson.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Speaking (and other stuff)

So I'm easing back into running. I got in 10 minutes last Thursday. Grace ran with me the whole time, and I kept having to tell her to slow down. Ellie and Scott came along on their bike and scooter, respectively. Then I celebrated my birthday and my gradual return to running on Saturday with 15 minutes on the treadmill.

When this is your view, you don't mind running on a treadmill.

Add that to the the fact that the view was the result of my friends (and hubby) surprising me with a girl's overnighter for my birthday, and the result was a pretty great run!

Monday's 17 1/2 minutes were a little harder because my stomach was rebelling after ALL. THE FOOD. Apparently for me, a birthday means I eat everything in sight. Which included my two friends and I polishing off a carton of ice cream and all but a few bites of a mini (because that designation makes it not quite as bad) cake. 

That's actually one of the things I love about Megan and Janae though. They eat like real people. And never judge the fact that I can out-eat just about anyone.

Speaking of food, here was my Costco haul earlier today. Most of these are pretty typical things I buy at Costco:

Rotisserie chicken: ALWAYS.

Eggs: Because we go through at least a dozen every week.

Cottage cheese: When you eat as much as we do, you buy it at Costco.

Cashews: Because they are the king of the nuts.

Yogurt dip: Trying to eat more veggies is easier with dip. And this one is yummy!

Raspberries: Because my girls love them.

Pomegranate arils: Tis the season. Love them in my yogurt and salad. And I extra love that there is no work involved in getting them out of the pomegranate.

Salad: No salad I make at home ever tastes quite as good as what I order at a restaurant, so this is the next best thing.

Sliced turkey breast: Trying something new. I love how thick the slices are.

Cheese: Because we are almost out of cheddar.

Also speaking of food, I have been trying lots of new recipes I've found on Pinterest lately. Like this one that everyone at our house gave a thumbs up last night. And speaking of Pinterest, HERE is how I made it my friend.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Lessons from NOT running

Before I start running again (today!), I want to share some things I have learned and the good that has come from being injured and NOT running.

What happens in the kitchen really makes a difference. Have you heard the saying "abs are made in the kitchen"? I now understand where that saying came from. And while I wouldn't claim to have abs (except maybe when I lie flat on my back, flex like it's my business,  and make sure the lighting is just right), getting my nutrition figured out and on the right track has made a difference in how I feel physically. I don't know if anyone else can see a difference, but I can. And that's who I am doing this for, so I'm fine with that.

Strength training can be fun. It is also a great way to feel strong, look leaner, and maintain fitness. I will always love running, but I've definitely found a place in my heart for strength training over the past three months!

Life goes on, even when you aren't running. I survived the weekend I was supposed to be running a marathon, I made it through some tough life events, and I haven't turned into momzilla without my runs to help me through it all.

Real life happens in real life, not on social media. I took a step back from social media when I was first injured because it made me sad and sometimes mad that I was injured and not out there running and racing. But I found it was actually good for me emotionally and mentally. I still love being inspired by everyone and keeping up with their victories, but I've liked having some distance from the not-so-great stuff out there.

Friday, October 9, 2015

My non-running funk...

I've been in kind of a funk the last few days. Monday I struggled all day with frustration about my ankle. Then our dishwasher broke that evening, which actually made me a little depressed. Especially after our fridge had problems and had to be repaired just a few weeks ago.

I gave myself a little pep talk that night about what is really important and tried to focus on how lucky we are that Scott can fix almost anything, which saves us a lot of money.

But my funk has lingered. Washing all the dishes that were in the full dishwasher when it stopped working, plus all of Monday's dishes, and then all the dishes from making a moon cake for a project Ellie had due on Wednesday didn't bother me as much as I expected. Yet the funk was still there on Tuesday.

The two hours I spent with Megan Wednesday morning were funk-free. But then it came back as soon as I got in my car to head to my girls' school.

I just can't put my finger on why I feel this way. Normally I would attribute it to not running. But I haven't been running for the past 90 days, so it clearly doesn't make sense for that to be the reason at this point.

This funk makes certain things harder to deal with than normal.

Like my girls fighting non-stop after school yesterday. I may have lost my cool at one point.

And like feeling not my best about my body...even though lately I've made progress mentally, have noticed positive changes physically, and have really dialed in my nutrition over the past month. Yet, I have been really frustrated and discouraged about how I look and feel the past few days.

But I did realize one good thing in all my funkiness. Instead of consoling myself with multiple pieces of pizza I picked up for the girls for dinner the other night or feeling like a huge Dr. Pepper would make me feel better (which would have ultimately made me feel worse and like a failure because I haven't had soda in over two months) or picking up and inhaling multiple cookies at the new Sodalicious 1/4 mile from my house because cookies make everything better, I haven't turned to food for comfort.

My relationship with food is changing. For the better.

Maybe the reason for this funk was so I could have that realization. At least that's what I'm going with. Which means the funk can now head on uptown.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

10 minutes of running...I'm coming for you!

This week is overwhelmingly booked. I have an important, meaningful blog post all written out in my head, but it will have to wait. It is one of those that I want to be able to take my time to write. And today is not a day with extra time. But I have a few other things I want to share with you, so you get those today instead.

Things like this this Instagram post Scott tagged me in that is pretty much always how I feel.

And this Instagram post my friend Jen tagged me in because she thought I would like it. And she was right. I loved it.

And of course there is the obligatory pumpkin item. I made these muffins Sunday morning, and they were the bomb.

For the record, I am still not running. But I can see those 10 minutes of bliss happening in the near future!

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