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March 31, 2016

Currently...



Feeling... exhausted.

Reading... "It's What I Do: A Photographer's Life of Love and War" by Lynsey Addario. I've had this on my radar for a few months and just started it yesterday. Jennifer Lawrence is playing Addario in the film adaptation, due out this year. 


Watching... I finally caught up on "Once Upon a Time" this week. 

Working on... staying afloat. It's been one of those weeks.

Needing... to spend the weekend playing catch up...on blogs, on email, on work, on reading, on running...everything.

Wanting...

Annoyed... at people who refuse to even try to make an effort to be accommodating. 

Excited... for my sister's film festival debut tonight in Florida! I couldn't make it for this trip, but I'll be one of the other festivals in April!

Hoping... that I can manage to relax this weekend while being productive. I might try to book a massage for Sunday night to force my hand at that!

Loving...that I'm still on a high from the amazing weekend I had with my mama in town! 

That's the month of March! Crazy!
I'll have my March recap up tomorrow!
I pulled this post together today in 5 minutes, so if you're thinking about linking up, go right ahead!








March 29, 2016

Weekly Workouts 13

It's the last week of the month so I'm linking up with Tracy and Alyssa for Training for Tuesday!

alyssagoesbang

I have no idea what went on this month. I have never been so busy at work. I've been working out but I haven't been logging my workouts and I can barely remember what went on last week but I'm going to try.


Monday: Off...I think?

Tuesday: Off

Wednesday: 20 minutes of yoga

Thursday: 5 miles with 3 at marathon goal pace. My target pace is 9:09/mile (sub-4 pace) and I did 2 miles at 8:55 and the last one at 9:08 (which was up hill!). It was easier than last week's MGP run and I felt awesome afterward.

Friday: Off. I was so mad about taking this day off! I was working from home and wanted to go to a spin class but right before lunch, I realized that I had left my computer charger at the office and I had to go get it. By the time I got back home, I blew my chances of getting any kind of workout in because I had to finish work and then head out for the play I was going to see.

Saturday: 4 miles around the National Mall where I ran into Courtney and some friends!

Sunday: Rest Day

Let's talk about race plans for a minute. I'm not running the Blue Ridge Half anymore. I'm bummed because I was really excited to push myself and see what I could do at the race. I've mentioned my sister's documentary a few times before and it's premiering at a film festival the week of the race and I can't be at both. The Blue Ridge Half will be there next year while my sister's film premiering at a festival is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I wouldn't miss for the world.

So what's next? I'm looking for a May Half to run but I'm turning all of my attention to the San Francisco Marathon. It's July 31st and I've already started training. Why so early? For years, I've been intrigued by Bart Yasso's Perfect 10 Marathon Training plan (which I read about in his book, My Life on the Run) and I finally have the flexibility to be able to use it. With my history of injury, I want to train the right way for this race and The Perfect 10, well, seems like the perfect plan.

How it works: Instead of breaking training down week by week, training is done on 10-day cycles that incorporate two speed workouts, a long run every 8th day, and shorter runs in between. Running long every 8th day means I'll be running long during the week but with a flexible work schedule, that won't be a problem for me.

There are 16 cycles and I'm currently on Cycle 2 (but I skipped Cycle 1 since I didn't have everything figured out yet). I'm excited to see how this training plan goes and will, of course, blog about it.

I'm debating what to do with these posts. I may switch them up and write these training recaps at the end of each cycle but I'm not sure yet. 


Have you heard of The Perfect 10?
How do you log your workouts each week?
How did your week go? What races are on your radar? 

March 28, 2016

Weekending...Cherry Blossom Style

Lately, I've been experiencing a lot of nostalgia for DC. It sounds weird to say, because we're still here and don't plan on leaving soon, but I love DC. It's taken me a long time to find a place I felt comfortable calling home and DC is definitely it. This city takes my breath away and there is no time like during the Cherry Blossom Festival to prove why. 


My mom came to town this weekend and The Pilot and I loved showing her around the Cherry Blossoms and taking her to some of our favorite neighborhoods while trying out some new restaurants. Usually, when my mom comes to DC, I like taking her to my favorite places, but this weekend, we tried a ton of new things and it just made me fall in love with the city even more. 

Friday night, I met up with two of my book club friends to see the Synetic Theater's silent production of "Romeo & Juliet." Synetic has been doing silent renditions of Shakespeare plays for years and this was my second play by them. They do a phenomenal job and I highly recommend a trip to Synetic for anyone who loves theater and is coming to DC! Trust me, I doubted the idea of silent Shakespeare too; it's well worth it!

I woke up on Saturday morning and headed for a run around the Mall, where I ran into Courtney and some friends! My mom came in later that morning and The Pilot and I took her to our favorite breakfast spot on the Hill, The Pretzel Bakery, for a quick bite to eat before hopping on the Metro and heading to the Mall to brave the masses of tourists and see the cherry blossoms!


For the last week, I've read a dozen articles about how to see the cherry blossoms without the crowds. Let me tell you something. If you want to see the Cherry Blossoms, you have to brave the crowds. Cherry Blossoms are just pretty trees. It's seeing them on the National Mall in front of the monuments that make the Cherry Blossom Festival so famous. It's crowded, yes, but it is 100% worth it.

We walked the Tidal Basin and then made our way down to Hain's Point before heading back to the Mall and on to City Center for a round of beers at City Tap House (highly recommend for drinks and snacks but not for brunch!).


I made dinner reservations at DBGB, a French-inspired restaurant in City Center which was wonderful! My mom and I shared oysters as an appetizer and we all had fantastic entrees. I was very impressed with the food and wine selection! We opted to skip dessert at DBGB and instead, headed around the corner to Momofuku's Milk Bar which recently opened in DC. I feel like Milk has way more hype in DC than it ever did in New York. The Pilot had the famed "cereal milk" soft serve (which I tasted and thought it tasted like rotted milk), I had crack pie (which is just gooey butter cake), and my mom had Dulce De Leche cake balls (which were just ok). Honestly, I lived around the corner from Milk in New York and went there once after a heavy night of drinking. I thought it was the best thing in the world. My sober, almost 30-year-old-self was not impressed. 

After a day of walking all over the Mall and eating incredibly filling foods, we were ready to call it a night!
Sunday morning, we went to St. Patrick's downtown for Easter Sunday Mass. St. Patrick's is my go-to-church for Lent because it's right downtown and their Mass times are convenient! After Mass, we headed to U Street for dinner at Kapnos, a Greek restaurant (by Top Chef Mike Isabella) that I've been wanting to try for awhile. Unsurprisingly, the food was incredible. We shared a tzatziki spread, some spanakopita (my favorite!) and baklava for dessert on top of very strong coffee and equally strong mimosas!

After brunch, we walked off all of our food at Meridian Hill Park at down Embassy Row before hopping on the Metro and heading home. We picked up Peyton and then drove down to the National Arboretum! I hadn't been to the Arboretum yet and honestly thought it was tiny! Turns out, there are 9 miles of running and cycling trails through the grounds which I will definitely be hitting up soon! There wasn't too much in season at the Arboretum and it was a pretty cloudy day but the magnolia trees were absolutely stunning!


Peyton loved roaming around and smelling all of the smells and sampling all of the different grasses available. We dropped her off at home and then went to Driftwood Kitchen on H Street for dinner. Driftwood Kitchen was another new-to-me restaurant and I immediately became a fan because they have Sunday Happy Hour! The food was fantastic (truffle mac and cheese anyone?) and we shared beignets and a cardamom creme brulee which I will definitely be back for!


This weekend was fabulous! I loved trying new restaurants and showing my mom around some of my favorite areas of DC! I loved seeing the Cherry Blossoms and falling in love with this city all over again! I love that The Pilot was home and that we go to let Peyton run around what may have been largest open space she's ever been to. I've been so busy lately and so tired and it was so wonderful to have a jam packed weekend with my favorite people doing some pretty awesome things in a pretty wonderful place!
How was your weekend?
Have you ever seen DC's Cherry Blossoms?
What's your favorite thing about where you live?

{Linking up with Biana and Meghan for Weekending}


March 25, 2016

Reading Lately + Beyond Words Book Club Link-Up

This month was really disappointing when it came to reading. I only read two books! It was partially because of how busy this month has been but it's mostly because it took me almost three weeks to read "The Memory Keeper's Daughter." I hate it when that happens!

Carolann and I are hosting our first link-up for they Beyond Words Book Club today! The link-up will happen on the last Friday of every month and you can share your thoughts on each month's book club along with what else you've been reading! Here's a look at my month:


"Havana Real" by Yoani Sanchez - This book was disappointing. I thought the book would be Yoani Sanchez telling her story but it's just four years of her blog posts translated by someone who admits to only having 5 weeks of intensive Spanish. I've read Sanchez's blog so it was nice to see her posts dating back quite a bit, but this definitely wasn't what I thought it would be.

"The Memory Keeper's Daughter" by Kim Edwards. - This was our first book club book and I loved reading everyone's thoughts about the book on the Goodreads group as we were reading it. Unfortunately, I hated this book. Hated. I gave it 2 stars on Goodreads. From the beginning, the author tried the "shock and awe" method in regards to everything and it got old.

The book starts in the middle of a snow storm when Norah Henry goes into labor and her husband, David, has to deliver the baby. After delivering a healthy baby boy, she unexpectedly delivers a second child, a girl with Down's Syndrome, which David gives to the nurse telling her to take the baby to an institution and then tells his wife that their second baby died.

Then the book carries on for 400 pages of each of their individual lives and you just keep waiting for them to intersect again, for Norah to find out that her baby never died, for David to make a confession, for the nurse to show up on the doorstep years later...something...and none of that happens. The "plot twist" occurs maybe 25 pages before the end and the book resolves in a "happily ever after" way that isn't realistic and didn't help the book in any way.

"The Little Paris Bookshop" by Nina George - I haven't finished this book yet, but I'm close enough to finishing that I'll put a partial review up and update this post after the fact. First, this book has the words "Paris" and "Bookshop" in the title which means that I was definitely going to read this book. It's beautiful. I absolutely love the language of this novel. Sentences like, "The air was a velvety 82 degrees" are just perfect. The novel is about Monsieur Perdu, a literary apothecary, who prescribes books for emotional ailments. From the book,
I wanted to treat feelings that are not recognizes as afflictions and are never diagnosed by doctors. All those little feelings and emotions notherapist is interested in, because they are apparently too minor and intangible. The feeling that washes over you when another summer nears its end. Or when you recognize that you haven't got your whole life left to find out where you belong. Or the sense of grief when a friendship doesn't develop as you thought, and you have to continue your search for a lifelong companion. Or those birthday morning blues. Nostalgia for the air of your childhood. Things like that. 
My issue with this book is that it seems like the author had two novel ideas (ha) and merged them into one. In the first, a man who mends broken hearts and souls with books but can't find the cure for his own aching heart and, in the second, a man who falls in love with a book written under a pseudonym and tries to find the true author. These stories run parallel in "The Little Paris Bookshop" and don't seem to align very well. With 75 pages until the end, I don't seem them coming together either, but we'll see.

If you're a member of the Beyond Bloggers' Book Club or want to join, voting is now available on the Goodreads group for our second book! Click over to Goodreads to request to join the group and cast your vote! Voting will be up through next week! The books we're voting on this month are:
What have you been reading lately?
Have you read any of these books?
If you read "The Memory Keeper's Daughter," what did you think?






March 24, 2016

Currently...


Feeling... busy! I really need an extra day this week to get through everything that is still on last week's to do list nevermind this week's!

Reading... "The Little Paris Bookshop" by Nina George. I should finish this today. It's ok. I really loved it at first but it seems to have come to a standstill.



Speaking of reading, tomorrow is the last Friday of the month, so in addition to my typical monthly reading post, I'll be posting about a review about this month's Beyond Bloggers Book Club book and announcing the books up to vote for next month!

Watching... Last night was the first time I turned on the TV all week. I watched an episode of "Happy Endings" and then went to bed.

Working on... staying on top of things. I lost my planner pen last week and haven't had time to get a new one and now, my planner is really behind. Is that ridiculous? Probably, but I'm very particular about my planner!

Needing... a good, long run.

Wanting... to explore all of the Cherry Blossoms that have bloomed this week!

Annoyed...

Excited... to see American Idiot at the Keegan Theater and Romeo & Juliet at the Synetic Theather this week AND for my mom to come visit this weekend for Easter!

Hoping... that my next cycle of marathon training (I'm training in cycles rather than weeks...more on that later) goes better than my last one did.

Loving.... everyone's comments on my Cuba post yesterday. I really appreciate them.

What's on your Currently list?
Did you write a similar post this week? Don't forget to link up!










March 23, 2016

Cuba

President Obama is in Cuba right now. Last week , US airlines announced full-service flights to Havana. It's legal to go to Cuba now.

I consider my blog to be a lifestyle blog with a heavy mix of running and travel. Today, I'm not writing about Cuba as a travel destination. I'm writing about something much more personal.


My father left Cuba in 1964. I am a Cuban American. I've dreamed of visiting Cuba my entire life, of seeing where he grew up and went to school, of walking the Malecon and listening to my grandparent's stories about Carnival. 

I have very mixed feelings about everything pertaining to Cuba right now. I'm actually quite sensitive about it. I am 100% in favor of the restoration of diplomatic relations between the US and Cuba but my family strictly opposes it, for reasons that I completely understand. 

When the president announced the restoration of diplomatic relations last year, I started planning my trip to Cuba. It was the number 1 item on my 30 Before 30 list.

Was.  

I don't know anymore. 

For the last year, I've gotten really tired of people saying, "You should go to Cuba before it gets ruined."

It infuriates me. It boils my blood. It makes me so exceptionally angry that I've had to walk out of the room when people say that.

How is Cuba going to be ruined? Because McDonald's and Starbucks are going to open there? Because Americans are going to be able to travel there? There's a McDonald's on the Champs d'Elysees in Paris, just steps from the Arc du Triomphe and I don't hear anyone shouting that Paris has been ruined. Thousands of European and South American tourists have been flocking to Cuba for the last 50 years. The fact that Americans think that Cuba will be ruined by Americans traveling there is sickening. Do people actually think that the floodgates being opened are going to ruin a country? It's ridiculous. American tourists are not going to ruin Cuba. 

Cuba is already ruined.

Cuba was ruined in 1959 when Fidel Castro came to power and destroyed basic human freedom. 

My grandparents left Cuba in 1964. They are in their 90s and have never gone back. The Cuba that my grandparents called home is gone.


Until three years ago, it was illegal to leave the country without permission and permission was never granted. Think about that. It was illegal to leave Cuba. In the 52 years since my grandparents have left, the reasons that they did so not only remain, but have worsened. Cuba is a country where there is no free press, free speech, or freedom of assembly, where Internet freedom is nonexistent...where accessing Gmail can land you in prison. 

Yoani Sanchez is a Cuban blogger who blogs at Generation Y. Since 2009, she has been blogging by emailing her posts to Cuban friends living in the US. She hasn't set eyes on her blog in 7 years because her blog has been banned by the Cuban government. She's been invited to speak at several conferences across the world and has never been able to attend because she can't leave Cuba. 

Americans can go to Cuba but Cubans cannot come to America, where 1.2 million of their friends, families, and loved ones have been fleeing to since 1959. 

Cuba is already ruined. It was ruined the minute it became unbearable for people like my grandparents who left, rather than spend their lives living in fear of a repressive government. 

People want to go to Cuba because it's forbidden fruit. 

I want to go to Cuba because it's who I am. My mom was born in the Dominican Republic. I've been to the DR and seen the house she grew up in, the hotel where my grandfather worked as a bell boy when he met my grandmother, I've seen my family's Dominican Republic. I want to go to Cuba and have those same experiences. I want to see my family's Cuba. 

My family will not go back to Cuba under the current leadership so I don't know if I will go. I don't want to go to Havana and walk around blindly like a tourist. I want to go to Cuba and an identity that I am tied to, but have no experience of.

Cuba is already ruined so no, I don't feel the need to rush there before it gets ruined. Cuba is not forbidden fruit to me. It's who I am. 

March 22, 2016

Weekly Workouts 12



Monday: Rest
Tuesday: 4 miles easy
Wednesday: 4 miles with 2 at Marathon Goal Pace (9:09/mile)
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 4 miles easy in Charlotte
Sunday: Rest

Last week was ok. I still wasn't feeling great on Monday after a bad cold over the weekend and even today I'm still feeling pretty run down. Last week was supposed to kick off my new marathon training plan but I just wasn't feeling great.

I didn't have a long run scheduled for the week so I didn't miss much, but it always seems like I get sick during the first week or peak week of training and that's frustrating. I'm hoping I bounce back quickly this week and can pick up where I've left off but I will say that I'm pretty happy with that MGP run that I did.

My training plan called for a 35-minute tempo run with a 15 minute warm up and cool down. I knew I wasn't going to be able to do that. I haven't run a tempo run in 3 years and I haven't run anything close to a 9:00 mile in as long. My plan was to run 4 miles with 2 as fast as I could and just build from there but I started that first mile and I felt good. It was tough to push the pace, but I did it and that is exactly what marathon training is all about...pushing the pace, pushing limits, pushing yourself. So, I'm happy with the start to this training, even if I didn't get every run in because those 2 miles...while they weren't 26...gave me the confidence I needed to kick off this training.

So, here's to Marathon #7. Here's to my 4th attempt at going sub-4. Here's to a spring and summer of pushing myself and seeing what I'm capable of on July 31 in San Francisco.

How's your training going?
What races are you eyeing in the coming months?

March 21, 2016

3 Days in Charlotte, NC

Hi, friends! Happy Monday! I hope you all had a fabulous weekend! The Pilot had his first weekend off in over a month so we took a little trip down south to Charlotte, North Carolina for the weekend!


The Pilot flies to Charlotte all the time and really loves it. When he found out he was going to have this weekend off, we decided to head to Charlotte because 1) I had never been there before, and 2) It's close to DC and we could make a short trip out of it.


We boarded an early flight Thursday morning and headed down to Charlotte. We booked an Airbnb for the first time! I've been wanting to book with Airbnb but we've never been able to find the right amalgamation of price, location, and available dates to make it work for any of our trips, so I was really excited! Our Airbnb was located right on a Light Rail stop between Uptown and the South End, which made it perfect for exploring both areas of the city! We checked in without any issue and then made our way straight to Amelie's French Bakery and Cafe.


I had to work on Thursday, so I settled into Amelie's, ordered some coffee, a croissant sandwich, and some macarons and settled in to work. The Pilot hung around with me for a little while and then went off to explore the city. It might sound crazy but I really loved working from Amelie's. My new job allows me a lot of flexibility, which I really needed, so it was nice to pop down to a different city and get some work done while people watching from a place that I read about in just about every material I read about Charlotte before heading down!

After a few hours, we made our way to the Epicentre for lunch and wandered around the area for a bit before heading back to the apartment. We had been up since 5 and The Pilot was exhausted, so he took a nap and I finished up work. It was St. Patrick's Day, so we made our way back to the Epicentre for a round of drinks, spent some time walking around Uptown, and then hopped on the Light Rail and rode it a few stops to the South End for dinner.


Friday morning, we headed back to Uptown to the 7th Street Public Market. I grabbed a delicious cup of coffee from Not Just Coffee and breakfast from Hazelnuts Creperie and sat down to work while The Pilot mapped out our day. Once I finished working, we went for a walk around the 4th Ward...Charlotte's gorgeous historic district which I later found out was revitalized by the Junior League of Charlotte!


We picked up a couple B-cycle bikes (Charlotte's bike share) and went back to our apartment to drop off my computer and then grabbed lunch in the Epicentre before heading back to 7th Street Public Market to pick up a few beers and take a ride on the Funny Bus! The Pilot found out about this tour company that does comedy tours of the city. He typically isn't one for guided tours so if he was interested, I was game. We had so much fun!  First of all, you can bring beer and wine and they turn the tour into a drinking game. The tour was hysterical and such an awesome way to see the city! The company only just started up in November but we had a full bus, so they must be doing pretty well!


On the Funny Bus, our tour guide pointed out King's Kitchen and Bakery, a nonprofit (!) restaurant in Uptown. Drawn to the mission, The Pilot and I headed there for some Southern Comfort Food for dinner. After dinner, we made our way back to the South End to check out the Sycamore Brewing Company. That was the place to be on Friday night in Charlotte! It was packed! It seemed like everyone at the brewery had a dog with them which I loved! The Pilot and I grabbed a few beers and sat down, enjoying the crowd and the live music. We spent a few hours there before calling it a night.

We weren't sure when we were going to head out on Saturday since it was supposed to be cold and rainy all day, but when we woke up, the sun was shining and it was beautiful out! I really wanted to go for a run in Charlotte, so we hopped on the Light Rail to the South End and then ran to Freedom Park. It was beautiful! Oh my goodness, it was absolutely picture perfect! From the South End to the park was about 1.5 miles, so we ran there and then ran another 2.5 miles in the park. It was an absolutely gorgeous day and I just loved running through the park. We finished up our run and then hopped on some B-cycle bikes and made our way back toward the South End. We stopped for brunch at Sunflour Baking Company and then made our way back to our Airbnb and got ready to make our way back to the airport!


It was a perfect weekend in Charlotte! I loved exploring the city and really loved the South End! It seemed like Uptown was where everyone seemed to hang out, but I really liked the vibe of the South End. I'm glad our Airbnb was in between both! I really liked Charlotte! I loved riding bikes around, sampling their multitude of craft beers, and exploring the city.

We made it back to DC and picked up Peyton from her first Dog Vacay (more on that later!) and spent Sunday with friends having brunch, playing games, and making the most of the cold front that came back to DC.

How was your weekend?
Have you ever been to Charlotte? 

{Linking up with Biana and Meghan for Weekending!}

March 17, 2016

Currently...


Feeling... exhausted. This week is killing me. Yesterday morning, I woke up at 4:45 and couldn't fall back asleep and then I went to bed too late. The first week of Daylight Saving Time is always really rough.

Reading... "The Little Paris Bookshop" by Nina George. I just started it this morning so I don't have an opinion yet but it's my pick for one of my book clubs and I'm excited to read it!


Watching... I'm so excited that "Once Upon a Time" is back after a...3 month (?) hiatus? I watched a ton of Gilmore Girls episodes this weekend but still haven't made it through Season 1. 

Working on... deadlines on deadlines on deadlines at work.

Needing... nothing at all. I'm in a good place. I mean...I have a  to-do list a mile long but, you know!

Wanting... to wander around taking pictures of all of the trees blooming all over the city. 

Annoyed... that Markus Zusak (author of "The Book Thief" was in DC yesterday and I couldn't go because the ENTIRE METRO SYSTEM SHUT DOWN. Oh my goodness I HATE the DC Metro. Over the summer, the federal government cut the DC Metro budget IN HALF which is WONDERFUL because DC residents get NO CONGRESSIONAL REPRESENTATION AND HAVE NO SAY IN THE MATTER. So yes, while I was able to work from home, I missed one of my favorite authors speak because the Metro wasn't running yesterday AT ALL. I'd also like to point out that Ransom Riggs (author of the Miss Peregrine series) was in DC two years ago and I missed him...FOR THE SAME REASON.

Excited... that one of my friends is coming to town this weekend! 

Hoping... to actually get a full week of blog posts scheduled for next week. Things have been so busy lately that I haven't been able to finish a lot of the posts I've started. Too bad none of you will read a post with no pictures ;)

Loving... my flexible work schedule at the amazing new job I started last month!

What's on your Currently list?
Any fun plans for the weekend? Has spring "sprung" where you are?
Did you write a similar post this week? Don't forget to link up!








March 15, 2016

Weekly Workouts 11

Well, last week started off on a good note, and then I came down with a really bad cold and slept for 24 hours over the weekend and didn't move from my couch.


Monday: 1 hour, 15 minutes of yoga. Not only was this the first studio class I've taken in months, but it was also the longest class I've taken in ages and it was great! I used my ClassPass membership to go to a class nearby and really loved it!

Tuesday: Rest Day

Wednesday: 3 easy miles. 

Thursday:
3.5 mile hill run. This was a tough run. I ran after work with two coworkers who both ran track in college. They've been inviting me to run with them and I've kept making excuses because I knew they would be faster than me, but fast friends make you faster. This run was tough. It was mostly a trail run and there were some serious hills and these girls had me winded in the first mile, but I kept up and felt awesome!

Friday:
 45 minutes of yoga

Saturday:
 Rest/Sick

Sunday: Rest/Sick

So, things happen and I got sick. I'm not beating myself up about it. I had a great week of training last week and a good start to this week and I know I'll be back on my feet again soon. I mentioned yesterday that I start marathon training this week and I'm prety excited about it! More detailsa bout why San Francisco and about the training plan coming soon! Stay tuned!
How did your week of workouts go?

March 14, 2016

Monday Morning Coffee

Good Morning friends!

I was really under the weather this weekend and missed out on a lot of fun weekend plans. I'm slowly coming back to life, but I thought I'd fill you in on what's been going on in my busy, busy world over a coffee date!


I slept for 24 hours this weekend. I came home from work Friday and was completely exhausted. I was in bed by 9:30 and slept until 10:00 Saturday morning when I woke up with a miserable cold. I spent the day on the couch watching episodes of Gilmore Girls and catching up on Scandal, Downton Abbey, and Once Upon a Time. It wasn't a bad way to spend a Saturday, except for the fact that I was sick. Sunday morning, I slept even later...until noon. Yikes!

Friday was quite possibly the best workday ever. There's a yoga studio here in DC (Flow Yoga on 14th Street for those of you who are local) that started doing Friday Workflow. They set up one of their studios as a work space with tons of different options for standing desks, sitting desks, etc. It' just a super comfortable way to work outside the office complete with meditation and yoga breaks and the option for a Thai Yoga massage which I absolutely took advantage of. I was there with about 7 of my coworkers and it was awesome!


I still hate my haircut. It's starting to grow out and by out, I don't mean longer, I mean physically out. I think I look like one of the three stooged. I've had bangs once before, but they looked way better than these do.

I finished watching Downton Abbey. I like the way it ended, but I feel like they could easily have gone another season.

Carolann and I are taking suggestions for our next book club pick. If you joined the book club, check out the Discussion Board to talk about how you're feeling about The Memory Keeper's Daughter and to suggest a pick for our next book club!

I'm supposed to start marathon training today. I've decided (but not registered) to run the San Francisco Marathon in July and I'm trying out a new training plan that is wildly different from any other plan I've done, but I think it's going to work really well for me. It's Bart Yasso's The Perfect 10. I'll post more about it in one of my Weekly Workout posts, but I'm supposed to start today off with a Tempo run and with how I was feeling this weekend, that might not happen. This training plan offers a lot of wiggle room though, so if it doesn't, I think it'll be ok.

So that's what's going on in this gloomy day in DC. 
How are you taking your coffee today? What's going on in your world?

March 13, 2016

1 Year, 6 Months

 

A year and a half ago, we got married. There are days when it feels like our wedding was yesterday and other days when it feels like it was a lot longer than 18 months.

It's crazy to think that our wedding was a year and a half ago. So much has happened in that time. We moved, we started new jobs, we lost family members, and we learned a fast lesson in parenting when Peyton got sick.

I still consider us newlyweds...especially when you consider that of those 18 months, we've probably only actually spent half of that time together. Last year, the Pilot had a job with no set schedule. He would routinely be called in on his off days, and trips that should have only kept him away for a night or two often turned into five or six. We neversaw each other and it was really hard. He has a new job now and it already looks like things will be much better than at his last job.

We've done a lot of really awesome things in such a short time. We went to our first wedding as a married couple, which was ridiculously exciting for some reason. We saw three other sets of friends get married. He supported me through every step of training for the Chicago Marathon, sometimes biking alongside on my long runs, indulging in my ridiculous post run cravings that changed by the second, and being there with a giant balloon all along the course. We tried new things, made new friends, saw our team make it to the World Series, and took three incredible trips to Lisbon, Hawaii, and Dubai.

We've been together for almost 7 years and we're still learning so much about each other. I definitely think married life feels different than before we were married. I can't verbalize how; it just is.


Our marriage will always be unique because so much of it is lived long distance. There is no greater feeling than when he comes home after being away for 4 days. We do that every week. Sometimes, those 4 days feel endless, and other times, they breeze by.

In the last year and a half, The Pilot has been there for me in ways that I never thought he would have to be and I'm grateful for every minute we're able to spend together.

What's the best {or worst} marriage advice you've ever heard?

March 10, 2016

Currently...




Feeling... relieved. I accidentally spilled some water on my brand new computer the other day and it started shorting out. I took it to the store and they were able to remove the back panel and dry it off. After leaving it in rice for 24 hours, it's working just fine!

Reading... "The Memory Keeper's Daughter" by Kim Edwards. This is our blogger's book club book and I am having a hard time with it.


Watching... Gilmore Girls. I never watched this show when it was on TV. I've seen a few episodes on ABC Family Free Form but never enough to actually follow the plot of the show. This weekend, I decided to put it on while folding laundry and five episodes later...

Listening to... "Big Magic" by Elizabeth Gilbert.

Thinking about... what the next year is going to look like.

Working on... playing catch up with email and blogs.

Needing... a long weekend.

Wanting... to see the National Parks IMAX movie at the Natural History Museum.

Annoyed... that I left my running shoes at the spin studio I went to on Saturday and have been there twice to pick them up only to find them closed at times they said they would be open.

Excited... for spring, Cherry Blossoms, visits from Mom, and baseball season!

Hoping... that I can plan a trip to they Bay Area for my sister's documentary. It's the same week as my race which is feasible, but might be tough.

Loving... ClassPass! I've been to three classes so far and I'm really loving it!

What's going on with you?
Did you write a Currently post this week? Don't forget to link up!





March 8, 2016

Weekly Workouts 10

I feel like last week was a breakthrough week for me in that, I finally got in a decent week of running in addition to yoga and erased the doubts I had about being ready for 13.1 by April 16th. Whether I'll be able to run 13.1 up a mountain is a different story, but we're making progress and now I have a plan. Baby steps.


Monday: 20 minutes of yoga

Tuesday: 30 minutes of yoga to wrap up my 30-Day Yoga Challenge!

Wednesday: 30 minutes of yoga because why not make it 31?

Thursday: 4 miles on the treadmill. I accidentally wore tights instead of shorts, forgot my headphones and got stuck watching a Trump Rally on CNN. It was pretty awful, but I got it done!

Friday: 3 miles in the cold.

Saturday: 45 minutes of spin. This was my first spin class in months and it kicked my butt! It was one of the hardest spin classes I've ever taken but it was so awesome! I went to Sculpt, which I've been wanting to check out for ages, and it was so worth it!

Sunday: 6 miles. My legs were pretty tired from Saturday's spin and I really didn't want to run, but I headed out for with the idea that I would just see how I felt and I ended up getting my planned mileage in and feeling really good about it.

As you know, I've been a total wimp about running in the cold. When Wednesday rolled around and I still hadn't run because of the weather, I finally sucked it up and did something about it. I signed up for ClassPass. I didn't want to join a gym that I knew I would barely go to, but I wanted the option for other workouts. My office is in an entirely different neighborhood from where we live, with an equal number of fitness studios and gyms, and I like the flexibility that ClassPass offers, so I signed up.

Thursday, I ran on the treadmill at a gym near my apartment, and Saturday I went to spin. When Sunday rolled around, I finally feel like I had a decent enough week of running that I can now move forward and actually call this training, so, finally (after saying I would share this for weeks), here's what my training plan looks like with 6 weeks until the Blue Ridge Half!




There it is! Finally written down! This is definitely an easier training plan than what I've worked with in the past, but I'm working from where I am right now. I recommend something similar if you aren't quite where you want to be with training! 

Looking for more weekly workout inspiration? This week, I'm loving posts from:

Marette @ Floradise
Courtney @ Eat Pray Run DC


*Note: ClassPass link is an affiliate, which means that if you sign up, I get a little something toward next month's pass.*

March 7, 2016

If I Had An Extra 3 Hours Today...

Happy Monday friends! If you're anything like me, you could have used an extra day in your weekend!

I feel like I didn't get anything crossed off of my to-do list, mostly because I didn't. So, here we are, it's Monday, and I've got a long day ahead of me. Last week, Amanda wrote a post about what she would do with an extra three hours in her day, so I'm borrowing the idea and doing the same! 


If I had an extra few hours in my day, I would:
  • Go to a yoga class
  • Finish Havana Real. I only have about 50 pages left and I really wanted to finish it this weekend.
  • Meal plan and grocery shop. This definitely didn't happen this weekend. Instead, I spent hours googling how to make meal planning easier, which yielded zero results. 
  • Finish scheduling my posts for the week. At least, I've started all of them. 
  • Do the laundry. I was way too busy putting in my new closet organizer to actually get the laundry done, but I think I can hold out for a few more days!
  • Bake breakfast cookies or banana bread. I like having something in the house as an easy grab and go option for breakfast. 
  • Clean up my emails. I seriously need 3 hours to just go through all of my email accounts. Miraculously, my work email account is in good shape, but my personal accounts are a mess!
  • Organize the files on my new PC. I don't have that many, but I haven't started designating folders, so everything is just kind of there. I need to start creating and organizing folders before things get out of hand...and transfer things from my old PC over to the Cloud. 
  • Go for a nice long walk. Today is a rest day for me, but it's going to be gorgeous out! I'm hoping I can take Peyton out for a good hour or so later today!
This is going to be a pretty busy week! I have a few deadlines at work that I'm trying to get ahead of and a lot of Junior League stuff going on, but I'm hoping I can stay on top of everything, finish this weekend's to-do list (without adding too many other things to it), and keep my apartment clean in the mean time! 

What would you do with an extra three hours today? 
How was your weekend? Tell me something awesome!

March 3, 2016

Currently...



Feeling... accomplished. I had three grants due this week and I got all of them submitted and got a decent jump start on another one due next week!

Reading... "Havana Real" by Yoeni Sanchez. I'm really disappointed by this book. I thought it was a biography about Yoeni's life in Cuba, but instead, it's just a translation of her blog posts from 2007 to 2010. I've only recently started reading Sanchez's blog so I'll keep reading but the description of this book was highly misleading.


Watching... "The Martian." The Pilot and I watched it last night. I loved it! I thought it was just as good as the book, but better in some ways. In the book, Mark Watney is pretty sarcastic. It's humorous, but his approach to being stranded on Mars is pretty much a take-it-in-stride approach. In the movie, there are several very real moments where Matt Damon just shows how lonely/scared/desperate he got at times. I loved it and highly recommend it.

Listening to... Noisli. This is my new favorite website! It plays different sounds (wind blowing, water bubbling, leaves rustling) that you can blend. You can set it to "Relaxing" or "Productivity" and it's so helpful! I've been listening to the Productivity mixes when I'm writing grants and it's amazing how much better I can concentrate!

Thinking about... so many plans! I'm trying to figure out which film festival to go to to see my sister's documentary (she got into 3!), and I want to plan a few trips for the start of baseball season!

Working on... our apartment still. It's gotten significantly worse before it has gotten better, but I drafted my editorial calendar for this little blog here and one of the things on it is an apartment tour, so HOPEFULLY that will motivate me to get things done.

Needing... to get in a run this week. Ugh.

Wanting... The Pilot to get his schedule for March. It is impossible for us to make any plans without his schedule.

Annoyed... at my second Stitch Fix. Three of the items were almost identical to items that I returned last month and I didn't even want to try anything on. They sent me a necklace that is cute and I'll probably keep it so I don't lose my styling fee, but I'm pretty disappointed.

Excited... about finishing my 30 Day Yoga Challenge! Third time's the charm!

Hoping... that our first blogger book club is a success! We're reading "The Memory Keeper's Daughter." If you haven't joined in yet, it's not too late!

Loving... the ballet! I saw my first ballet on Tuesday night at the Kennedy Center. It was a showcase performed by the New York City Ballet and I loved it! I want to go to the ballet all the time now! Best part? I crossed TWO things off of my 30 Before 30 list on Tuesday by seeing the performance!

What's going on with you?
Did you write a 'Currently...' post this week? Don't forget to link up!






March 1, 2016

Weekly Workouts 9

Before I dive into today's post, I want to point out that TODAY I finished my 30-day yoga challenge! This challenge proved to me that strengthening my yoga practice is integral to becoming a better runner and I will definitely continue to practice regularly. After today, I'd like to get back into the studio with longer classes, maybe adding some heat. Practicing at home has been great and has allowed me to get really comfortable with poses that I normally would never try in a studio for fear of falling all over the place, but I'm ready to get back into the studio. I feel like that will help me truly grow my practice. 


Now, let's talk about last week!

It was cold and rainy and I wanted no part of it. Last week, a few of you made comments that I need to get myself a gym. Here's the problem. The nearest gyms to my apartment are 1-1.5 miles away and I don't have a car so in the time it would take me to run or bike to the gym (in the cold), I might as well just get in a run and the fact that that still requires me to get out in the cold to workout means it just isn't happening.

You guys, when it comes to the cold, I'm a total wimp. I embrace that fact. I hate the winter. I don't want to be outside when it's 7 degrees outside and I certainly don't want to be running outside when it's 7 degrees outside and the wind chill is below 0. 

I don't want to pay to join a gym near my office because I don't want to trek all the way there on the weekends. I know. I'm making a lot of excused and there's a very good chance that I'm going to pay for it and to be honest, that's what I get for signing up for an April Half when I swore that I wouldn't run a spring race because I didn't want to train through the winter. 

So, you already know where this was going. Last week was all yoga, all the time. Here's how it looked:

Monday: 20 minutes of yoga

Tuesday: 20 minutes of yoga

Wednesday: 25 minutes of yoga

Thursday: 15 minutes of yoga

Friday: 30 minutes of yoga

Saturday: 6 mile run, 30 minutes of yoga. I'm super proud of this run. I didn't really want to do more than 3 miles, but once I got to Mile 3, I just kept going because I felt good. 

Sunday: 4 mile run, 35 minutes of yoga. I should win something for both of these workouts. I did them AFTER spending my day at a vineyard drinking wine. Obviously, I wasn't drunk, but I was definitely sleepy. My knee was really bothering me in the last quarter mile of my run and started to worry me when I went to church afterwards and it hurt to transition from sitting to standing to kneeling (Hi, Catholic Mass) but the yoga practice was on the restorative side and seemed to work all of that out. By the end of practice, my knee felt fine and felt great all day yesterday.

Despite not running through the week, I actually got in the mileage I wanted to get in for the week and still managed to get in a decently inclined run in. The weather in DC is a lot nicer this week and it's staying light out a lot later, so that should motivate me to run. 

There you have it. 30-day yoga challenge = done! Now it's time to turn my full attention to running! 

How did your week shape up? 


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