Monday, March 2, 2015

February Recap + March Goals

Happy March!! I, for one, am super excited for a new month. A fresh start.
Why does it seem that February, the shortest month of the year, always seems so long!?!

Actually, the entire month wasn't so bad; it's just got clouded with kind of a pretty rotten ending. I guess that's why these recaps are so important. To keep me a little grounded and help remember the good times.

February started out with the best thing ever - a fantastically surprising PR at the Big Game 5k.

February 2015 recap

Here are a few more highlights from the month:

I convinced a co-worker to Runch with me one afternoon. We were going to make it a more regular thing, but so far, we've only gone the one time.

I tried out a fun Toning Ballet class at Pole Fitness Studio using my ClassPass.

I read more in February than I have in a very long time!

I fell into a funk the past week or so. :(

February Goal Recap

  • Bike commute at least 4 times - Only made it 2 1/2 times, which I'm still happy about - considering it had been MONTHS since I'd last biked in.
  • Run at least 35 miles - So close! I think I made it 29+ miles, but then this funk hit me like a ton of bricks, and running took a backseat.
  • Take 3 yoga classes - Total failure with this one. Not even a single yoga class was taken. Not even a yoga video at home.
  • Complete the Flab Free February challenge with Tera at Girl Gone Healthy -  I did really well with this for the first 19 days of the month, and then, well, that stupid funk. :(
  • Gain 50 Pinterest followers - Only gained 23, but I didn't really take the time to actually focus on this like I wanted to.
  • Read at least 2 books - Winner, winner, chicken dinner!!! I actually read 3 books in February - 2 on my own and 1 with Jeff. :-)

Goals with Jeff Recap

  • Monthly date night - Didn't happen in February. I know, I know. The month with Valentine's Day AND Jeff's birthday, and we didn't manage to get out of the house together. Unless you count the crazy walk to RedBox on Saturday.
  • Read 12 books - Finished book #2. Whoo hoo! We didn't think we were going to, but then we surprised ourselves by finishing a few days early. We even got a jump start on book #3.
  • Buy a house - It's with a little bit of sadness that we've decided to remove this as one of our 2015 goals. Sometimes life has other ideas, and plans have to change. So instead of buying a house, we signed a new 13-month lease at our current apartment. 

Enjoying the Course | March Goals

Yeah. It's going to be a bit of a Do Over month.

What was your best highlight from February?
What are your March goals?

Blogger Tricks

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Workout Recap + Mar 1 Meal Plan

In case you missed my crazy experience yesterday, check this out!

Jeff and I walked to Redbox yesterday afternoon to rent a couple movies. When we were almost there, we heard a screech of tires and then a loud crash! I looked around and couldn't comprehend what happened at first. And then I saw the downed street light.

It was pretty windy, but not that windy. Unbelievable! And pretty perfect timing, considering how busy the street was, that no one was hurt and no cars were damaged.

Of course, we didn't have our phones with us, so once we got back to our apartment, I grabbed my phone and we took off back down the street to snap a picture. :-D

By time we got back to the scene, the Fire Department had arrived to help keep pedestrians away and to control traffic.

So, that was our exciting Saturday afternoon.

Workout Recap

In case you missed my post on Tuesday, I've been in kind of a funk this past week, which resulted in pretty much taking the entire week off of working out.

Let's call it a RESET week. :-)

I think the only activity I even attempted last week was biking to work on Thursday. It wiped me out so much, that I called Jeff to come and pick me up after work.

Ugh! Here's to a new month and climbing out of this funk!!

What's for Dinner?

What's for Dinner? Week of Feb 22nd

Here's what I think I'll be cooking up this week.

Sunday: Burritos

Monday: Salads

Tuesday: Hummus Crusted Chicken

Wednesday: Penne with red sauce and garlic bread

Thursday: Soup & Grilled Cheese

Friday: Baked Potatoes and Chili

Saturday: TBD

Overnight oats - 3rd week's a charm??
Orange Yogurt Cake


Chips & Salsa
Jicama with honey lime dipping sauce
Hemp Hearts & Coconut Bars

Sunday Prep:
Prep overnight oats
Make hummus, guacamole, and honey lime dipping sauce
Hemp Hearts & Coconut Bars
Cut pineapple

What are you cooking up this week?
How were your workouts last week?

Be sure to stop by Laura @ Mommy Run Fast and Jill Conyers to check out what everyone else is cooking up this week.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Book Review: Two Love Stories

It's the last day of February, which means it's time to link up with the Blogger Book Club 2015.
Blogger Book Club 2015

The theme for February was A Love Story.

I was actually able to finish TWO books this month for this theme. Crazy, I know!

Both of the books I ended up reading were about a woman who discovered that her husband (in one) and fiance (in the other) had cheated on her and how she coped with the discovery and then moved on to find true love. Both books were fun, easy reads, and I enjoyed them both - though I did enjoy the 2nd one a little more.

They both contained love (obviously) and humor. Both are filled with lots of interesting secondary characters and fun situations.

My 1st book was Confetti Confidential: They Do, I Don't by Susan Murphy.

I thought there was a bit too much men-bashing in the first half of the book, and there wasn't enough romance throughout. It's easy to relate to Viv, and she did find herself in some crazy predicaments, but I thought the love/romance could have been a bit more developed.

Confetti Confidential: They Do, I Don't My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley. Genevieve "Viv" is a wedding celebrant whose marriage of 19 years crumbles when she discovers he's had an affair and a gambling problem. She immediately kicks him to the curb, and clings to her best friend, Tom, and her 3 sisters. She becomes disillusioned about love and marriage, but decides to follow-through on the 10 weddings that were already on her schedule.

This book was filled with lots of interesting characters! And Viv gets into a lot of uncomfortably, funny situations. I loved the interaction of Viv and her sisters, and meeting the brides/grooms of the weddings she was officiating added a lot of fun to the book.

Each of her sisters supported in her their own unique ways. These five women have to support each other through more than just Viv's break-up, and they do it with lots of laughter and support. Makes you wish you were a part of such a close sisterhood.

Peter, Viv's husband, tries desperately to get back together with her. He makes some changes in his life and is a pretty regular character in the book. And then there is Tom, her very best friend. He leaves for London, shortly after the break-up, which Viv doesn't take too well. She misses her best friend quite a bit - especially when he doesn't reply to her emails and phone calls.

Fearing that she's lost him, too, she also meets/dates a couple of other men in book. With everything else going on, she suddenly has several men wooing her, including Tom, who has professed his love to her via email.

I'm not sure which of the men I wanted her to end up with, if any, but I was a little disappointed in the ending.

I found that this was a light, fun read, but the thing I liked best about it was that the author is from South Australia. As an American, there were a few phrases that I had to get from context, which I found endearing and made me enjoy the book even more. :)

My 2nd book was Lucky Charm by Marie Astor.

I actually bought this book a couple of years ago, but never ended up reading it until now. Even though, the protagonist in this book also got her heart broken, the focus was much more on her finding love than bashing men. It was brimming with romance, especially the chapters that found her in Paris.

Lucky Charm My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Annabelle is happily planning her wedding to Jeremy, but feels like they may have fallen into a rut. She makes a couple of attempts to spice things up, but her worst fears come true when she stumbles upon Jeremy kissing his agent. She immediately kicks him out of the small studio they share in New York City.

She clings her to her best friend, Lilly. Meanwhile, Lilly has fallen in love with a Parisian. She still finds time to comfort Annabelle and encourage her to get her life back after the devastation of getting her heart broken.

Lilly is a fashion designer who has an upcoming fashion contest in Paris. She somehow convinces Annabelle to join her for a few weeks in Paris, but first, they happened upon a fortune teller one evening a month or so prior to their Paris trip. The fortune teller got a lot of things spot on about both Lilly and Annabelle and gave Annabelle a beautiful necklace with a heart charm on it. Said it was a lucky charm and would bring her love.

Annabelle had been very skeptical of the fortune teller, but quickly embraced the talisman and immediately started wearing all the time. Love was a little rocky at first with the charm, but it lived up to its lucky nature once she arrived in Paris.

She fell for Etienne hard after their first date! And he for her. It was fun to follow along on their adventures in the most romantic city in the world. Of course, he was handsome, muscled, and very wealthy (drives a Porsche)!

Their romance was fast and all-encompassing. And the love scenes were very well-written without being graphic. Just enough to make you really feel the love that was blossoming between the two of them.

This books isn't entirely all about the love and romance. There are plenty of other interesting plot twists and turns and characters.

In her professional life, Annabelle works in a boutique advertising agency writing ad copy. She finds it unfulfilling and longs to devote more time to her writing - something that she'd put on hold while her finance, Jeremy, had worked on his first book. It was fun to meet a couple of her clients at the agency as well as her boss and the other women in her office.

This was definitely a fun, quick read with a perfect ending!

Do you have a favorite love story?

I can't wait to check out these other love stories that were read in February.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

In a funk...

I'm linking up for The Fit Dish with Jill Conyers and Jessica Joy today!

This week's topic:

In a slump #dishthefit

I tried and TRIED to think of fitness-inspiring movies, and all I could come up with was Rocky. Which I don't think I've actually ever seen all the way through.

So, yeah, I'm going to go off topic today.

Hello. I'm Clarinda, and I'm in a funk.

It really hit me on Sunday. Saturday was kind of a busy day, so I decided to push my weekend run to Sunday.

And then I woke up on Sunday, and the weather had turned crappy. It was cold (for Vegas!) and cloudy and dreary with a forecast of rain and continued dreariness.

Plus, I felt like I was coming down with something. My head hurt, and I felt all achy.

So, I skipped my run on Sunday, too. And I skipped my run this morning - to bitch and moan on my blog. :-)

I've also fallen off the #FlabFreeGGH challenge I'd been doing in February. I made it 19 good days, and then I think I got sick of squats. :(

Anyway, I know it's only been a few days for the fitness portion of this slump, BUT I don't want it to get carried away. I don't know about you, but it's SO easy for me to let a few days turn into a few weeks.

If I quit now, I will soon be back to where I started. And when I started I was desperately wishing to be where I am now.

This little funk of mine has lasted much longer than just the past few days, actually.

I hate to complain about work (or do I?), but it's been stressful lately and super busy. I'm hoping that today will be much better! There's also some craziness going on at home, but I don't think I want to go into that right now. Maybe other cheery post in the future? lol.

With so much going on, it's just difficult for me to find the motivation I need to MOVE MY BODY! All I want to do is curl up and read or sleep. Some days, it's a real struggle for me to just get to work. Ugh.

OK. Enough wallowing!

Let Your Smile Change the World. But Never Let the World Change Your Smile.

Maybe just writing this will help me to get me out of this funk - or at least not let it last too long.

How do you get out of a funk?
What's your favorite fitness-inspiring movie scene?

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Workout Recap + Feb 22 Meal Plan

Holy cow! Where did this week go?! Work was crazy, as is the usual, it seems lately.

I was able to get in one more class with my ClassPass before my complimentary month ended. Sadly, I was only able to fit in 2 classes with my free pass. #lame

I wish I'd made it a little more of a priority. *sigh*

Toning Ballet at Pole Fitness Studio sounded like fun! And definitely out of my comfortable zone. I'm not very graceful and definitely not a very good dancer, so I thought it would be good for me to try something new. Ooph! This was TOUGH! Many times throughout the class I thought: It's because I'm a runner that I can't bend my leg like that. OR Damn! I need to do more yoga!! Running is keeping me so tight!

I think it might have been just my way of justifying my inflexibility and making me feel better about myself. LOL.

You can read my full review of the studio and this class over on Yelp.

Workout Recap

Sunday: 4.35 mile run + Day 13 of #FlabFreeGGH (20 donkey kicks, 20 bridges, 24 squats) + Day 15 of #FlabFreeGGH (25 scissor kicks, 30 squats, 1 min plank)

Monday: Arms & Core Hand Weight Workout (3x) + Day 16 of #FlabFreeGGH (25 scissor kicks, 30 squats, 1 min plank)

Tuesday: 2.3 mile run (Speed work 30-20-10) + Day 17 of #FlabFreeGGH (30 lunge kicks, 35 squats, 1:10 plank)

Wednesday: Toning Ballet at Pole Fitness Studio + Day 18 of #FlabFreeGGH (30 lunge kicks, 35 squats, 1:10 plank)

Thursday: 3 mile easy run

Friday: Bike commuted to work + Day 20 of #FlabFreeGGH (30 donkey kicks, 30 bridges, 40 squats)

Saturday: REST

What's for Dinner?

What's for Dinner? Week of Feb 22nd

I'm super excited about my meal plan this week! Lots of good stuff, so I hope that I can stick to it this week.

Sunday: Leftover Baked Chimichangas from last night.

Monday: Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Tuesday: Leftovers

Wednesday: Spiralized Yellow Squash (me) and Penne (Jeff) with red sauce

Thursday: Leftovers

Friday: Leftovers

Saturday: Hummus Crusted Chicken

Overnight oats - no specific recipe; never ended up experimenting with this last week, so it's ON this week.


Chips & Salsa
Fruit - apples, blood oranges

Sunday Prep:
Cut potatoes for soup
Slice jicama for salads/wraps
Prep overnight oats
Make yogurt and hummus

What are you cooking up this week?
How were your workouts last week?

Be sure to stop by Laura @ Mommy Run Fast and Jill Conyers to check out what everyone else is cooking up this week.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Workout Recap + Feb 15 Meal Plan

I feel like my workouts start out really strong at the beginning of the week, but then really peter off by the end of the week. :( Work has been pretty stressful the past couple weeks, which I wish prompted me to alleviate with exercise. But truth be told, it resulted in a couple dinners from McDonald's this past week.

This week will be better, right?!

A couple of exciting exercise things did happen this past week, though.

1) I rode my bike to work for the first time in ... let's just say ... way. too. long. It was exhilarating! And awesome. And I really wish I would have done it more than just once last week.

2) I went for a Runch (run+lunch) with a co-working on Thursday. Yep, we took to the Vegas streets in the afternoon and managed to kick out a 5k. Woot woot!! Plus a couple other co-workers said they wanted to join us next week, so Thursday runches might become a thing.

Workout Recap

Workout Recap | Feb 8-14

Sunday: 5 mile run + Yoga For Runners on my patio + Day 8 of #FlabFreeGGH (15 scissor kicks, 15 squats, 30 sec plank)

Monday: REST

Tuesday: 3 mile run (Speed work 30-20-10) + Day 10 of #FlabFreeGGH (20 lunge kicks, 20 squats, 1 min plank) + bike commuted to work

Wednesday: Arms & Core Hand Weight Workout (3x) + Day 11 of #FlabFreeGGH (20 scissor kicks, 20 squats, 1 min plank)

Thursday: 3.15 mile tempo run + Day 12 of #FlabFreeGGH (20 donkey kicks, 20 bridges, 24 squats)

Friday: REST

Saturday: REST

What's for Dinner?

What's for Dinner? Week of Feb 15th

With the couple of nights of McDonald's + a night a Chinese delivery, there will be a bit of roll-over from last week. Here's to better eating choices this week!

Sunday: Black Bean & Butternut Squash Casserole

Monday: Leftovers

Tuesday: Chicken & Asparagus Stir Fry

Wednesday: Leftovers

Thursday: Honey Mustard Chicken with Zucchini

Friday: Leftovers

Saturday: TBD

Overnight oats - no specific recipe; going to play around with this a little this week

Roasted Jalapeno Soup

Bell Peppers & Hummus
Chips & Salsa

Sunday Prep:
Cut peppers
Overnight oats

What are you cooking up this week?
How were your workouts last week?

Be sure to stop by Laura @ Mommy Run Fast and Jill Conyers to check out what everyone else is cooking up this week.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Review: Tommie Copper & a Giveaway

I recently received a pair of Performance Compression Capris from Tommie Copper in exchange for an honest review.

{Review} Tommie Copper Performance Compression Capris
After the Big Game 5K

And by recently, I mean back in August.
But then I went on that unplanned blogging hiatus and never ended up writing a review. Oops!

Imagine my surprise when they unexpectedly sent me a 2nd pair a couple weeks ago! Guess I really owe them a review now. :)

And I owe it to all of you as well, because if you haven't heard of, or tried, Tommie Copper yet, you've been missing out!

From their About Us page:
Tommie Copper combines sport science and skin health benefits for improved mobility, performance and relief. All Tommie Copper products feature 100% CopperZnergy™copper and zinc-infused fabric. CopperZnergy eliminates odors caused by microbes and offers UPF 50+ protection from the suns harmful UV rays and Cool Copper technology keeps you dry for skin health benefits.
I've ran a half marathon, a full marathon, and a 5K in these capris (plus lots of everyday running), so I can honestly say that I really, really like these!

It must be the copper. :)

I love that these are low-rise. Most of the other compression shorts I've tried come up well above my waist, which is nice when you need a little compression for your low back as well, but I loved that these sit squarely on my hips. Such high-rise shorts can be a little uncomfortable (to me).

I love that these are super comfortable. The material is soft, but sturdy, and flexible. I could lounge around in these all day. Or run. For a reasonable amount of time. Maybe not all day, but that's more because I'm just not ready for an all day run. Someday, perhaps. And then Tommie Copper will be there for me, I'm sure.

{Review} Tommie Copper Performance Compression Capris
Perfect for jumping pictures after a surprising PR!

I do think that I might have needed to go with a smaller size. For compression capris, these seemed to go on very easily for me, and didn't feel particularly tight. Better than too tight, I suppose, but there were times that they felt like they were falling down while running. They weren't really, but I think a smaller size might have been better for me.

I love that Care for these is easy-peasy. Machine-washable. Tumble dry low. Yay! No dryer sheets or fabric softener, but that's pretty typical of athletic/running-specific clothing. I always hang mine to dry, but I hang most of my running clothes, so it's no big thing. Mostly I just love that they aren't hand wash, because, well, I'm terrible about that.

I love the variety of products available. There are lots more fun products than capris. From Tops to Elbow Sleeves to this really cool Recovery Compression Core Band that I really want to try!

It's easy to look for items by Men or Women, Performance or Recovery. BUT I love that you can also search by Pain Point. Experiencing discomfort in your legs or back? They've got you covered with great suggestions on what might help to alleviate it.

Since I love my capris so much, I'm super excited that the folks at Tommie Copper agreed to let me host a giveaway! One lucky reader will win a $50 coupon code! Whoo hoo!! Enter using the Rafflecopter below. Giveaway will be open through Feb 23. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Do you use compression?
Have you ever tried Tommie Coppper?