Monthly Archives: January 2012

Workout Windup: Rockin’ the Workouts

While week two of Workout Windup didn’t pan out so well, week three went pretty fantastic. Let’s hop right to it, shall we? Here’s how my workouts went:

  • Rest on Monday
  • SoulCycle on Tuesday at 6 a.m.
  • Barry’s Boot Camp on Wednesday at 4 p.m.
  • Hot power at Pure Yoga on Thursday at 6 p.m.
  • Yoga DVD on Friday at 7 a.m., strength training at 6:30 p.m. Rest
  • Run 10 miles on Saturday
  • Rest Sunday

I did every workout I had planned except for Friday and Sunday, and frankly, I’m ok with it. I really listened to what my body wanted this week and well, it told me it needed rest days on those two days. I didn’t want to push too hard and risk worsening my situation, and I think I met that happy medium this week. Especially during that 10-mile run on Saturday. My knee wasn’t in pain, but my body definitely pushed for those 10 miles. It was the perfect distance for me to really get in a solid, hard workout (TWSS).

MRI is scheduled for tomorrow night, so hopefully I’ll have an update by Wednesday on how to proceed. In the meantime, I’m going to slowly incorporate more running into the schedule because it’s time for marathon training to begin! This week, here’s what I have planned:

  • SoulCycle on Monday at 7 a.m.
  • Run 3 miles on Tuesday at 7 a.m.
  • Hot yoga at Yoga to the People on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m.
  • Run 4-6 miles on Thursday at 6:30 a.m., strength at 6:30 p.m.
  • Rest Friday
  • Run 11 miles on Saturday
  • Yoga DVD on Sunday

Now I’m off to pay some bills (fun, fun) before heading to bed. Good night!

Now you tell me: How did your workouts go this past week? And what do you have on the schedule now?

The Power of Positive Thinking

Today, I ran 10 miles. Not only did I run those miles, but I owned those puppies completely pain-free! Wahoo!

I’ve been killing it in my workouts this week, dominating my eats, halting the unnecessary snacking, and tuning in to my body. I am on top of my game. I have felt really good all week and any time a scary, negative thought started to creep into my head, I squashed that little bugger.

Squashed it with my new kicks.

Because brighter is better 🙂

I fully believe in the power of positive thinking. Whenever I get down on myself, it becomes so obvious in the rest of my life. I start eating like crap, I’m tired all of the time and I lack productivity. Oh yeah, and it doesn’t solve anything. I’ve been dealing with this pesky little pain problem for the last month and dutifully going to doctor’s appointments to figure out why my body decided to go psycho right as marathon training is about to begin.

I don’t have a full answer yet (MRI is Monday!), but I’m almost there. I’ve ruled out all of the scary stuff, like blood clots and ACL tears, so now I’m waiting for a final diagnosis. In the meantime, I’ve been cautiously pushing myself through  my workouts. And as I’ve done more, the pain has decreased. Especially as I lift more weights and stretch out in yoga. Cross- and strength-training, you are a beautiful thing.

Even though my body has felt pretty baller all week (can you tell I’m on a runner’s high yet?),  I went into today’s scheduled 10-miler optimistic but knowing that I was going to call it quits once the pain kicked in. I kept running along in this gorgeous 45-degree weather, smiling my little face off like a doofus…and no pain came. I was shocked. I was ecstatic.

I’m sure all of my positive thoughts and 11:11 wishes didn’t heal me, but they definitely have made this process a lot easier. So I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing, and we’ll see what happens on Monday. Fingers crossed for a good outcome, and if you see the clock at 11:11, make a wish for me 😉

Now you tell me: How do you stay positive through a rough patch?

I Got a Blogging Award!

Every time I get a comment, “like,” or link-up from someone about my little ole’ blog, I get all sorts of excited. Whenever someone IRL (in real life) comes up to me and says they’ve been reading my blog and love it, I’m always in a bit of shock. I’ve been blogging for a little over a year and a half now, but it still surprises me that people take the time out of their day to come read what I have to say. It’s really exciting. What’s more exciting is that I’ve been nominated for a Versatile Blogging Award from My Happy Happenings. Yay! Here’s what she posted to let me know how she feels about my little space on the Web:

So sweet! I never intended for a bunch of people to read my blog, I just wanted to share what I’ve learned and hold myself accountable by publishing something online. After a while, I hoped to inspire someone to start their own fitness routine and perhaps make changes they need to get on the path for a healthy lifestyle. So with this award, I guess I accomplished that. Now I just hope to do it more! #ImgreedyandIknowit

So here’s how this thing works:

  • Thank the award-giver and link back to them in your post. (Done! Thanks again, TK!)
  • Share seven things about yourself.
  • Pass the award along to seven others.
  • Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know about the award.

Without further adieu, here are seven things you should know about me (If you want to know even more, click here, here and here).

  1. I live in New York City, but I’m a big country girl at heart. I love where I live and what I’m doing with my life, but there’s nothing quite like a small town. I always look forward to going home to visit my family, where there’s wide open spaces, tons of rolling hills (great for running!), bonfires, big backyards and more cows than there are people.
  2. I was born a writer. I work at a national magazine, I love writing on this blog, I have a few non-fiction and fiction short stories that I started in college and continue to work on, and a part of me is extremely in love with screenwriting. One of my secret dreams (not so secret now) would be to have one of my creative writing pieces, whether it be a screenplay, novel, or short story, published.
  3. I’ve only had one surgery (to repair my torn ACL) and have never broken or sprained anything. *knockonwood*
  4. I have a blood disorder called Factor V Leiden, which basically means my blood is prone to clotting. A lot of people actually have it (it’s genetic), but most go their whole lives without ever knowing it. How did I find out about it? The aforementioned ACL surgery resulted in 7 blood clots in my left leg. WIN.
  5. I love to read. I used to plow through 10 or so books a month when I was in middle and high school. College textbooks consumed me, but I always read a lot over the summer. Now I’m finding my groove and get to read a lot on my commute to and from work. One of my 2012 goals is to read at least one book a month (magazines don’t count – I read a lot of those). I’m finishing up my second of the month soon!
  6. I really enjoy yoga, but never make enough time for it. I wish I knew why I do this. I know you reap awesome benefits from it, and I love how I feel afterward, but it’s the first thing I pass up when time is tight. If someone can enlighten me, please do.
  7. I’m a magazine hoarder. I get rid of basically everything else every season when I do a big apartment cleaning, but I hang onto those puppies for a long time. Makes no sense to me because after I’ve read it once, I usually won’t pick it up again.

And now for my nominations! In no particular order, some bloggers I love:

  • Losing Weight in the City – I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Theodora IRL and she’s just as great in person as she is on this blog. Love her attitude and she’s very smart.
  • Life of Blyss – I’m pretty sure Alyssa and I would be BFFs if we lived near each other. She’s smart, sassy and motivated. Triple threat. And she loves Ke$ha. BOOM.
  • Knack for Nutrition – Jennifer is completely honest and details her love for fitness as much as she goes into her struggles with weight loss. She’s great at laying it all out there and letting you know you’re not alone in your struggles.
  • Ali on the Run – She’s awesome and that is all. She loves running and is amazing at it, even if she doesn’t always realize it. I wish I ran as well as her. I also wish we hung out more. Let’s change that Ali, mmmmk?
  • Meals and Moves – Janetha is fantabulous and I love her blunt, “I say what I feel and that’s just the way it is” attitude. Her recipes are really helpful, too.
  • Fit Chick in the City – Jess has been sidelined from running with an injury for quite a while now, yet she’s been awesome at fitting in all of her workouts still. She’s extremely motivational, and with my looming injuries, I know I’ll always turn to her blog for the self-esteem boost I may need.
  • Run Stronger Every Day – I heart Abby, on her blog and IRL. She rocks my socks. And her blog is extremely informational, so go there whenever you want to learn more about becoming a better and stronger runner.

Thanks again to My Happy Happenings!

Now you tell me: What blogs do you love? If you’re looking for more of my faves, head to my Check ‘Em Out page!

Workout Windup: Getting on Track

So week two of Workout Windup was a bit of a fail. I planned to fit in all of these workouts, but I let life get the best of me. I had a busy week at work and just didn’t make the time that I needed to break a sweat. I know it was because I didn’t schedule exactly what I would be doing. I work well with structure, so that’s just what I need to do. So I ended up doing this:

  • SoulCycle on Monday morning, not going balls to the wall Walk around Astoria Park, about 3 miles
  • Hot power at Pure Yoga on Monday afternoon 
  • Rest Tuesday SoulCycle on Tuesday morning
  • Yoga DVD on Wednesday
  • Strength, incline walking on treadmill on Thursday
  • Rest Friday
  • Light run on Saturday, mileage TBD
  • Rest and/or yoga on Sunday

Like I said, a bit of a fail, but at least I did something. I also made a lot of progress in the doctor department. I saw two doctors last week, and my third one today. Post coming later this week on my diagnosis —  I still need to get an MRI for the final results.

So, pending doc’s approval, my schedule for this week is:

  • Rest on Monday
  • SoulCycle on Tuesday at 6a.m.
  • Barry’s Boot Camp on Wednesday at 5p.m.
  • Hot power at Pure Yoga on Thursday at 6p.m.
  • Yoga DVD on Friday at 7a.m., strength training at 6:30p.m.
  • Run Saturday, mileage TBD
  • Strength training on Sunday

In other news, I got my hair cut on Sunday! It’s a pretty big change for me, but I’m a fan 🙂

This is what I looked like before….

(Lots of temptation in the office last week)

This is what I look like now!

Now you tell me: what workouts do you have planned this week? 

Three Years Ago

Three years ago, I started dating someone who would soon become my best friend.

Someone I could laugh with, cry with, share my dreams with. Someone I could revel in my successes with and be sad over my failures with.

I learned to trust and love with my whole heart, and while that’s one of the scariest feelings in the world, it’s also one of the most rewarding.

We’ve been through seven birthdays, four Christmases, graduation, landing our first careers, and  moving together.

This weekend Dustin and I celebrated our three-year anniversary. He woke me up with a delicious breakfast in bed of blueberry pancakes, eggs, toast and orange juice. I unfortunately was too tired and hungry to take a picture. After lounging around for a while, we headed over to Broadway.

To see Phantom of the Opera! It was Dustin’s first Broadway show, and my second. I saw Beauty and the Beast for a school field trip back in middle school. I loved it then and I love it even more now. It was a great show.

After we grabbed a quick dinner at Chipotle and walked around the city taking in the first real snowfall of the year. It was kind of magical and it was great walking around and just enjoying each other’s company. Then my sweet tooth kicked in and I had to grab 16 Handles. Or at least I did.

‘Twas delicious. After what I thought was the end of the day, Dustin had one more surprise up his sleeve. We capped off the day with Ides of March, a movie I’ve been dying to see.

And I got my favorite flowers, yellow roses.

Three roses for three years together, the coral one to highlight the third year.

A quiet day, and I couldn’t have asked for anything better.

Happy anniversary, Dustin! Here’s to the last three years, and hopefully many more to come ❤

Winter Running Gear

Now that winter has decided to finally make its presence with single digit temperatures, it’s important to remember to dress correctly when exercising outdoors. It’s easy to wear too much, or not enough, and practically beg for a day of cough medicine because you caught a cold. Yuck.

The key to success? Layers that cover up as much skin as possible.

When I went out for a run on Sunday, it was a gorgeous day. The sun was shining and the wind was tolerable, so I didn’t need to wear a heavy jacket. But it was cold, so layers were key. Here’s the breakdown, from the head down.

  1. Lululemon brisk run headband in black
  2. Lululemon run: swiftly long-sleeved tech tee in black (the site says it’s black but it’s grey)
  3. Nike Dri-Fit half-marathon finisher’s tee in yellow
  4. Lululemon run:inspire jacket in lolo purple (I also recommend the Pure Balance jacket)
  5. Black gloves from Wal-Mart because I’m too poor to own a pair of real running gloves
  6. Nike Element Thermal Tights
  7. Nike Anti-Blister Lightweight Low-Cut Tab socks.

If it was colder and windier (or snowing), I’d have opted for a hat rather than a headband, and a jacket that covered up my neck. If I was going to be out for more than an hour, I’d put warmer socks on, too. Finally, if it was really bad, I’d consider a face mask. But let’s be honest: if it’s that cold, I’m probably just going to stay home. I don’t deal well with winter.

And there ya have it! If it’s going to stay this cold out, make sure you’re dressing warmly for your workouts. If not, well, let’s all be happy the weather’s warmer 🙂

Now you tell me: do you like to workout outside when the temps dip? Or are you more of a gym person? 

Workout Windup: Sticking to Goals

Workout windup is back! Although I’m in the midst of some crazy pain problems as far as my hip and knee are concerned, I’m determined to still fit in as many workouts as my body (and doctors) will allow me. So I’m resurrecting Workout Windups on Sundays to help keep me on track. I’ll recap what workouts I completed for the week, then plan out what I’m doing the next.

Let’s get right to it, shall we? This week I…

  • Went to hot power yoga at Pure Yoga on Wednesday. My friend, Lauren, tagged along for a community event Pure was having. We selected hot power, one of my favorites and her first go at it, and then sampled some sushi after. Perfect combination! Next time I’ll remember to take a photo…
  • Ran 4 very cold and blustery miles on Sunday
  • Did a yoga DVD twice on Sunday. The only one I have in my apartment right now is a half-hour long, so I went through it twice to give me a good 60 minutes. Right now yoga seems to be the only thing I can do that leaves me completely pain-free (I haven’t tried swimming yet), so I’m going to try and incorporate that into my workouts more often.

Nothing too crazy, but I’m glad I was able to fit some sweat sessions in before heading to the many doctors I owe a visit.

This week, my plan is to listen to my body. So as long as I’m not experiencing a lot of pain, I’m going to:

  • SoulCycle on Monday morning, not going balls-to-the-wall
  • Hot power at Pure Yoga on Monday afternoon
  • Rest Tuesday
  • Yoga DVD on Wednesday
  • Strength, incline walking on treadmill on Thursday
  • Rest Friday
  • Light run on Saturday. Mileage TBD
  • Rest and/or yoga on Sunday

And there ya have it! Now I’m off to relax and watch the Golden Globes!

P.S. Did anyone else watch the football game last night? Broncos got SPANKED! Go Patriots 🙂

Now you tell me: what workouts did you do this week? And what’s on the calendar next week? 

A Domestic Kind of Day

Happy Saturday! Today was quite a lazy day, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that 🙂

After sleeping in, I debated a workout, but my body was definitely telling me not to. I’ll go into more detail about what’s going on with me next week, after I see a slew of doctors and actually know the deal myself. Pinky promise.

So after I nixed that idea, I had no plans on the agenda. I twiddled my thumbs for a bit, then went on a cleaning binge. Am I the only one who gets in those moods where I just have to scrub down everything in sight as thoroughly as possible?  I’m pretty sure my roommates love it and I secretly do, too. There’s really nothing like a clean apartment. Wow, I sound like a nerd.

Anyway, after my cleaning spree, I decided to get domestic. Off to the kitchen I went! While I’m writing this, I’m wondering what’s wrong with me. Lately I’ve been having the biggest urges to just cook and bake. That never happens. Am I growing up? I don’t know how I feel about this…

After perusing my Pinterest boards for a while, Dustin decided he wanted stuffed shells for dinner. In fact, he told me he has never had them before. What?! That pretty much sealed the deal. And since we’re both huge taco fans, I went with these Mexican stuffed shells for a bit of an added kick. I followed the recipe exactly, except I cut out the green onions, used whipped cream cheese,  and topped the shells with plain Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.

They didn’t take too long to make, and I was able to simultaneously make these cookies. Holy yum. The only difference in my recipe? I nixed the pretzel salt (because I didn’t have any) and used peanut butter m&m’s instead of peanut butter chips. They came out really well. Dustin isn’t a huge fan of baked goods and he’s already had two, so I know this one’s a keeper.

After all of that hard work, I had a delicious dinner of stuffed shells with mixed vegetables (I used a steamable bag that I just popped in the microwave)…

A cookie for dessert…

And a glass of California red wine to wash it all down with.

A pretty good night, if you ask me.

Now I’m off to watch the rest of the Broncos/Patriots game with Dustin. Go Pats!

Now you tell me: What’s one of your favorite dinner recipes?  How about cookies? I’m looking for new ideas to satisfy this crazy craving to cook! 

Embracing 2012

Happy 2012, everyone! I know I’m nine days late, but hey, it isn’t my lucky number for nothing!

I’ve never been a person who was really big on resolutions. Whenever I think of that word, the classics pop into my head. “I’m going to lose such and such amount of weight,” or “this year is going to be the year that I finally do so and so.” I just don’t function like that. A switch does not go off in my head suddenly on January 1 that ignites this revolution inside of me. Sorry to burst your bubble 😉

This is the closest relevant photo you're going to get.

So while everyone else’s resolution posts are long gone by now, I’m here to present my latest goals post. I actually think it’s good to wait a little while before posting my yearly goals. That way I have time to soak in the energy of the new year, really figure out what I want to accomplish this year, and well, see what everyone else wants to do too. I’m nosy like that.

And away we go!

Fitness

1.) Finish a marathon.

This is by far and away one of the biggest things I want to cross off of my bucket list this year. The sad part is, I’m not sure I’m going to be able to do it. I’m registered for the Country Music Marathon in April, and I’m supposed to begin training very soon, but that seems less likely the more time goes on. I’ve been struggling with hip pain since October, and finally went to the orthopedist  in December. I was diagnosed with a muscle strain in the right hip and prescribed a few weeks of physical therapy to strengthen my hip. Okie dokie, I can do that.

But then knee pain hit. It started on December 23, and it only hurts after I run. Not during, and not when I’m doing other forms of cardio (not sure about cardio though because I’ve only been to one spin class since then and it didn’t bother me). It begins once I’m done running and it’s pretty intense — think I can’t walk down stairs because I want to either punch something or fall on the ground in a heap and just cry. I know I need to go get it looked at, especially with my blood disorder. I’m on it.

Wow, way to digress Samantha, eh? Anyway, I want to run a marathon. Whether or not it actually happens: to be determined.

2.) Do yoga twice a week.

My body really needs it; my running coach says to do it. I’ve kept up so far, so let’s keep the ball rolling.

3.) Be able to do 20 real push-ups in a row.

Yeah, I’m a wimp and really don’t like push-ups. But they’re so good for you. I want to be able to do them all on my toes and with proper form. I don’t want to rush through them either. Abby taught me that slow and steady wins the race with these bad boys.

4.) Run a sub-2:00 half-marathon.

Pending the whole running thing works out and I’m not sidelined for a long time (see reasons above), I really want to go sub-2 in 2012. I’m registered for the National half in March and really want that to be the race that does it for me, but that really depends on what’s going on with my body. I really think I have at least a 1:55:xx in me right now, but even if I nab a finish time of 1:59:xx I’ll be happy.

5.) Run a race for charity.

I really want to raise money for the American Cancer Society, along with a few other organizations that are near and dear to my heart. I won’t get my yearly dose of college Relay for Life, so it’s time to combine my passion for giving back with my passion for fitness.

Life

1. Get a full-time job. Grow at my job.

When 2012 began, my goal was to earn a full-time position. As of January 3, I am officially a full-time employee at FITNESS. Woohoo! I’ve been freelancing for them since July and absolutely love it there. I love the people I work with and I love the content we’re creating. So while this isn’t exactly a goal I can attach a specific variable to, I just want to continue to grow, learn and do well at my job. If I’m as happy with my career one year from now as I am right now, then I’ll be one lucky girl.

2. Volunteer at the Hope Lodge.

I keep meaning to get my butt over there and this year I’m going to do it. That’s all.

3.) Go on a cruise.

I have wanted to go on this type of vacation for God knows how long. I think about it every year, but I never follow through. Dustin and I almost did in 2010, but had to cancel our plans due to unforeseen financial circumstances. I’ve been doing really well managing my money along with my new lifestyle (ahem, college graduate), so I’d like to reward myself and enjoy a vacation on the sea with Dustin by the end of July.

4.) Pay off X amount of my student loans.

I have a certain number in mind where you read that X, and I’d really like to make it happen. I’m not in a ton of debt because I was able to secure scholarships here and there along with working multiple jobs throughout my education. So I’d like to be really close to that glorious “debt-free” status by the end of the year. I made a giant leap toward that goal last night when I paid off one loan in full. That felt really good. 

5.) Get my personal trainer certification.

This has been a goal for a long time, but I kept putting it aside because of my job hunt. Now that that’s a little more settled, I’d like to really focus on studying. The books are purchased; I just need to crack ’em open.

6.) Read at least one book a month.

I basically sucked at keeping up with my reading in 2011, until about October. Then I breezed through nine books, all of which I recommend on Pinterest. And I’m already on the right track for 2012: I finished The Violets of March by Sarah Jio this weekend. Seeing as I read it in approximately 48 hours, I recommend this one too. I have so many books on my to-read list; it’s time to start whittling that baby down.

There ya have it! As far as the blog goes, I’m sure it’s been obvious that I haven’t been blogging nearly as frequently as I was before. To be completely honest, it’s because I wasn’t feeling inspired. The past few months have been rough for me and I don’t want to write for no reason. So right now, I’m not making any promises because I don’t want to let anyone down. I’m going to write as often as my schedule allows, and when I have something I want to say. I understand if I lose some readers, but I’m eternally grateful to those of you who stick around. It really makes my day when I see someone cares enough to pop over 🙂

So now it’s your turn:

What are your goals for 2012? Any the same as me? What’s different? Feel free to brag about how awesome your goals are compared to mine, or just how rad you are in general. I won’t mind.