Monday, February 25, 2013

Diet-to-Go Really Delivers

I was recently given the opportunity to review Diet-to-Go, an amazing diet meal delivery service. I was beyond impressed with my 3-day trial, and I thought I'd be able to express that better with a video.

I apologize, but I got a little rambly and the video is around 9 min. Still, I hope you'll take the time to watch it.



What I loved
  • Super delicious and convenient
  • 3 different menu types with lots of variety
  • Customizable menu plan to fit your needs
  • Delivered right to your door
  • Very little prep time and clean-up is a breeze

What I didn't care for
  • Packaging is annoying (but unsure if that was just my sampling)
  • An a la carte options would be nice
  • Kind of spendy (but not really compared to other similar services)

I would absolutely recommend this for anyone looking for a diet meal delivery service, or anyone wanting to take control of their portions and to eat a bit healthier.


I'm excited to share with you an opportunity to try this for 20% off any meal plan. Just visit Diet-to-Go and use the coupon code: fitfluential.

Have you tried Diet-to-Go?
How do you feel about diets, in general?


Disclosure: FitFluential LLC compensated me for this Campaign. All opinions are my own.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Blog Your Heart Out

Where did February go? I can't believe it's already the last Friday of the month. It seems like it was just last week that I was wearing red for National Go Red for Women Day.

My month was filled with lots of fun, but it didn't quite go according to plan.

I'd hoped to consistently ride my bike to work everyday.

But then it got cold again I got lazy. 

I'd hoped to share random facts about heart disease at the end of every post.

But then I always seemed to forget until after I'd hit publish.

While I still won't likely ride my bike into work this morning, I can take a few moments to share some things I've learned about heart disease since today is...

Blog Your Heart Out

I may have had some family member suffer from heart disease, but no one instantly comes to mind. I think that can be the scariest thing about heart disease - while it is somewhat hereditary, it isn't entirely so.
Even if you’re a yoga-loving, marathon-running workout fiend, your risk for heart disease isn’t completely eliminated. Factors like cholesterol, eating habits and smoking can counterbalance your other healthy habits. You can be thin and have high cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends you start getting your cholesterol checked at age 20, or earlier, if your family has a history of heart disease. And while you’re at it, be sure to keep an eye on your blood pressure at your next check-up.

Personally, my eating habits aren't exactly where they should be. I know I need to work on this. I know that leading an active lifestyle is really only part of the equation of being healthy, but I've found that changing my eating habits is much, much more difficult that changing my activity level.

You can start small. Here are a few tips. I hope to try harder to incorporate these into my life as well.
Stock up on heart healthy fruits and vegetables. And if fresh doesn’t work with your schedule or habits, remember you can get frozen or canned. Just be sure to rinse canned fruits and vegetables, as they may contain added salts and sugars.

Eat seasonally. Good for your budget and waistline, eating seasonally means you are getting food at its peak performance and flavor level.

Drink more water.

Eat more fiber. Whole grains are filled with fiber, which makes digestion easier and helps you feel fuller when you’re done eating – both key factors in weight management.

If you're reading this, you're likely someone who is at least interested in running or maintaining an active lifestyle. You probably eat relatively well, too. Or least better than most Americans. As hard as I am on myself for my eating habits, I know that I am better off than most. I just know I can do better. Where I'm going with all this is we're probably at a lower risk of heart disease in general because of our lifestyles, but, as mentioned previously, it doesn't mean we're in the clear.
90 percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease. Heart disease is a killer that strikes more women than men, and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined. While one in 31 American women dies from breast cancer each year, heart disease claims the lives of one in three. That’s roughly one death each minute.

Spreading awareness is a great way to try and help lower that statistic. So, let me ask you. What is the first thing you think of when I say heart attack?

Raise your hand if you thought extreme chest pain.

That's because that's so often what is portrayed in the media, but in reality the symptoms can look a lot different in women.
Women are somewhat more likely to experience shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain. Other symptoms women should look out for are dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting, pain in the lower chest or upper abdomen and extreme fatigue.

Wow. I really had no idea!

I know there was a lot in this post, but I hope you made it through. Please join me in the Go Red for Women movement, and remember to take time to STOP.
S: stop what you are doing,
T: take a few deep breaths,
O: observe your body and smile,
P: proceed with kindness and compassion.

If you learned even one thing in the post, please share this with your loved ones. Or just click that little Tweet button and help raise awareness on Twitter.


All quotes and statistics are from the goredforwomen.org website.

Monday, February 18, 2013

10 Things that Make Me Happy

Earlier this year, I started a blog where I share at least one small moment in my day that made me happy. You should totally check it out. :) A Happy Moment A Day.

This week's Monday Listicle topic is 10 tiny (or secret) things that bring you joy. Easy! I'll just look at that blog to see what I've blogged about most.

10 Things that Make Me Happy


  1. Jeff. He is definitely what makes me the most happy.
  2. Sallie. From watching her sleep to play to cuddle, she always makes me smile.
  3. Eating. It might surprise my family, but I actually do love to eat and try new things in the kitchen. All within reason, of course. ;)
  4. Movies. Nothing beats relaxing after work by curling up with Jeff and watching a movie. Thank goodness for Redbox!
  5. Running. I know some of you might think I'm crazy, but running really does make me happy.
  6. Blogging. I enjoy writing posts but even more than that, I love interacting with other bloggers!
  7. Being outside. My work day always goes a bit better when I'm able to sit out in the sun for a few moments during my lunch. Also, just sitting out on our patio brings a smile to my face.
  8. Laughing. I love to laugh. I love the sound of my laugh and I like the way it makes me feel - especially the day after a hard ab workout. :)
  9. Freebies. If I'm offered something for free, even if it's something I don't necessarily need or want, I'll take it. 
  10. Our apartment. It's nothing super fancy or great, and there are some quirky problems, but it's got a kickass patio and it's steps from the hot tub, plus it's in Vegas! So much fun!!
What tiny things bring you joy? Now go visit Stasha to read other lists of joy.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Adding a Little Protein Boost

As runners or any athlete, really, we know the importance of properly feeding our muscles. Adding protein immediately after a workout or long any run can help with recovery as well as muscle soreness.

Plus, it just feels good to reward yourself for a job well done.

There are a lot of great protein products out there, but I'm always excited to try something new, so I was super pumped to have the opportunity to try out Designer Whey.


Great incentive to go work out, am I right?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

I LOVE..

It's finally Valentine's Day!! Not that we're really doing anything special to celebrate. I think I'll finally make the nice pasta dinner that I've been threatening to make all week, and maybe we'll take a soak in the hot tub, if it's nice enough outside.

I've only got a few minutes before I have to dash off to work, but I wanted to share three things I'm really in love with right now.

1. My Family


It's a little weird to think that right now my immediate family consists of me, my husband and our dog. I'm 35yo, so I don't think I can really count my parents and siblings as immediate anymore. I still love them, of course. I always will. But the love I have for Jeff and Sallie (yes, I know she's a dog), is kind of a different kind of love. Jeff and Sallie bring me lots of smiles every day. I love talking to them. And playing together. We have a pretty great time together. And I certainly wouldn't change that for anything!

2. My Life


My job is going really well. Our apartment is wonderful. I've been running and working out pretty consistently. I'm enjoying being a #FitFluential ambassador. You already know why I'm loving my bike, too. More days than not I find myself smiling for no apparent reason and just being filled with all kinds of love and positive energy.

3. My Bed


This may sound weird, but I really am in love with my bed.

DynastyMattress New Cool Breeze 12-Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress-King Size.


We've only been married for 8 years, and this is the 5th mattress we've purchased. 5th time's the charm, right? It's a firm mattress, true, but it just envelopes me in a supportive way that is difficult to describe but absolutely perfect!

I'm not sure I've ever loved something more. Certainly no other mattress has compared to this. I could seriously go on and on and on, but I've got to get to work. If you're in the market for a new mattress, I'd recommend this. Hands down. Best part is that it's less than $700. For a mattress? Yep.

We've had it for almost two month's now, so I feel like this love is real and here to stay. :-)

What are you loving today?
Any big plans to celebrate Valentine's Day

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

I ♥ to Run

There's just something about running. I love it.

Sometimes, I can't help but think WHY! It often hurts. It can be time-consuming. Sometimes people look at me funny. Sometimes I feel like people judge me.

Plus, I'm not necessarily a very good runner. I'm pretty average when it comes to pace and endurance. I'm far from a fanatic. I don't spend a lot of time talking about running or researching the best gear or latest toys.

But you know what? IT DOESN'T MATTER. Despite all of that, I still love running.


Since Valentine's Day is tomorrow, and #runchat has challenged us to Spread the Love of Running, I thought I'd share a few reasons why I love to run.

In no particular order.

Running clothes are super cute and comfy. Next to yoga clothes, I'm not sure anything beats running clothes. At least the stuff I buy. I mean, I get by without wearing a bra or panties - cuz they come built it. :-D

Running makes me happy and feel alive. There's just something about getting that heart pumping and sweat flowing. It brings an energy that just makes me smile. Yes, even when it hurts - though sometimes not exactly in the moment.

Running allows me to have lots of little personal victories. It's such a personal sport where you can challenge yourself to go just a tiny bit further - in time, distance, pace. You name it! It's 100% customizable, and when you've pushed yourself and beaten even the tiniest of goals, you just feel so. damn. good!

Running gets me outside. If it weren't for running, I'd hardly leave my house. I certainly wouldn't explore my neighborhood as much as I do. It a great excuse to get out there and enjoy the weather. Yes, I'm kind of a wimp and generally stick to running inside in inclement weather, but if it's nice outside...

Running can be done anywhere. I'm not going to lie. I'm sometimes a pretty lazy runner. I love that I can just lace up and run from right out my front door. Or if I'm travelling wish I could do this more often! I can run in the neighborhood of the hotel/resort. Can't ever forget to pack the running shoes!!

Why do you love running?
What makes you wanna lace up those shoes and get out there?

Monday, February 11, 2013

I ♥ My Bike

It's Monday, which means it's listicle time!! I'm straying off topic today, but I hope you'll stick with me. :)

I want to give a little love shout-out to my bike this week. Y'know, since it is Valentine's week after all. I may do a little running love later in the week, too. Stay tuned.

As you know, I'm a runner. I've always been a runner not actively, but it's always been my #1 choice of exercise, and resisted riding a bike for many years. Even as a little girl, I never really liked riding bike. I'd much rather walk.

Whenever anyone would ask me if I would ever consider doing a triathlon, I'd say, I'd love to except for the whole biking and swimming parts. I'm still not on board with the swimming, but I've really come to love my bike.

cycling bike commuting enjoying the course

10 REASONS I LOVE MY BIKE

  1. It's pretty. I like the green color and the overall design.
  2. It's fancy. When we got rid of our car back in Aug 2010 and bought our bikes, we spared no expense and got a little fancy. It's got disc brakes and an internally geared 8-speed hub. That's about as technical as I can get and yes, I had to look that up to get the terminology right.
  3. It allows me to slow down. Commuting by bike is definitely more strenuous physically, but it allows me to notice the mountains more and other things in my surroundings.
  4. It helps save on gas. This is better on our pocketbook as well as good for the environment. Win-win!
  5. It's fun! There isn't a lot of things that Jeff and I can do together outside he's not really a runner or a hiker, but we can enjoy a nice bike ride together.
  6. It's cheap. Well, the bike itself wasn't, nor were the accessories, BUT I don't have to pay to use it. I just jump on and GO.
  7. It's accessorizeable. yeah. I know that's not really a word. From panniers to pouches to safety lights and bells, there are so many cool things to make biking even more fun and convenient. Jeff recently ordered me a bunch of new stuff, and I'm anxiously awaiting the arrival.
  8. It gives me bragging rights. You commute to work?! How many miles?! Wow! I'm jealous! I wish I could do that! I love hearing things like that.
  9. It makes me a better driver. The more I bike commute, the better a driver I become. I've become more aware of what else is going on around me when driving - watching for cyclists, walkers/runners, and, of course, other drivers.
  10. It gives me an excuse to eat more. This might not be such a good thing. ;-) Honestly, though, I think it helps me crave healthier, better energy burning snacks.

All that being said, I'm driving to work today. It's only 42°F feels like 34 outside with a 15 mph wind. Um. No, thank you!

Now, why not pop on over to The good life to read lists about top “OH NO YOU DIDN’T” GIFTS for Valentine's Day. I bet they'll be a lot of fun and will probably make you laugh a lot more than this one did.

If you bike ride, what do you love most about your bike?
What would be on your list of "Oh, no, you didn't" gifts?

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Grandma Lill’s 96th Birthday Virtual Race!

It was super windy yesterday. I know, nothing compared to Nemo or Orko, but when it comes to weather, sometimes I'm a big ole wimp.

I wanted to get in a 5 mile run, and I tried to convince myself to put on some warmer clothes and head outside, but I just. couldn't. do it.

I headed to our little fitness center instead. To run on the treadmill. I figured I'd do the first 3.1 miles for a virtual race.


I did this much later in the day than I usually hit the treadmill, and my heart wasn't really into it, so this was TOUGH! No surprise that I didn't PR.

My speed on this varied between 6.5 and 7.0, and the incline varied from 0.0 to 2.0. I think it was the inclines at a faster pace than I'm used to that did me in.

I paused the treadmill to snap a quick picture.


And had the hardest time finishing out my 5 miles. I tried running and then switched to walking for a bit. Even when I increased back to a run, I only went up to a 6.0 speed - and had some trouble maintaining that.

Of course, my goal for every single run is to do it with a sub-10:00 pace. Some days I really have to work hard for it. Like yesterday.


In the end, I did manage to eke out a 9:53 pace.

Have you signed up for this virtual race?  What are you waiting for? She's got some great prizes. Head on over to Livin the Sweat Life for all the details. You have until Feb 21st to run a 5K. Good luck!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Date Night - Bahama Breeze

Way too long ago three and a half weeks, I got invited to attend a blogger event at Bahama Breeze. This was my first event like this, but not my first time at Bahama Breeze, but I somehow convinced my husband to join me.

I'm so glad that I did!

It turned out to be such a fun date night for the two of us. We hadn't had one in such a long time, and it was beyond needed. We enjoyed great conversation, delicious food, and lots of laughter.


Bahama Breeze really outdid themselves for this little shindig. They were rolling out some new drinks top left in above pic, so they invited Las Vegas bloggers out to help spread the word. I was so happy to lend a hand.

New Drinks
Yaka Hula Hickey Dula, Hawaii
Daisy de Santiago, Cuba

The Yaka Hula Hickey Dula was not only fun to say, but it was right up our alley - fruity, sweet and strong! :) Jeff slurped his down right away and tried to start on mine.

The Daisy de Santiago wasn't exactly our cup of tea. It was too minty and not as easy for us to down. These ended up sitting on the table, relatively untouched. *sigh*

Then they also brought out their Ultimate Pina Colada lower left in above pic, which I'd had on a previous visit. Now, this is a drink we could definitely get on board with. It's basically a mix between a pina colada with a strawberry daiquiri. They top it with Myers Dark Rum and fresh coconut. Jeff loved this drink and raved about it from his first sip.

We were also treated to some divine appetizers.


As you might know, we try to eat as little meat as possible, but we also believe strongly in not letting food go to waste, so we tried everything they provided.

They first brought out Jamaican Chicken Wings and Buttermilk Fried Chicken Sliders. We normally do not like eating anything off the bone - particularly chicken wings. Seems too barbaric to us. Still, we gave them a try. It was awkward, but the flavor was wonderful. I wonder if they'd make these boneless? The sliders, of course, were absolutely delicious. We couldn't get enough of them.

Next they brought out Beef Empanadas and  Coconut Shrimp. These little pastries, filled with beef and potatoes, were perfection. So much flavor in both the filling and the flaky crust.

I was really hesitant to try the coconut shrimp. I'm not a lover of seafood. In fact, nothing about it usually appeals to me. The smell. The look. But, I wanted forced myself to try these.


WOW! I couldn't believe how much I liked these. I seriously couldn't stop eating them. Probably because they were coated enough that I couldn't smell them and the shrimp taste was well masked.  Warning: These were pretty sweet, especially dipped in the accompanying sauce.

Sharing these four appetizers between the two us was way too much food. We had our fill - and then some. We got to take some home with us, and it was a delicious lunch for me the next day.

Oh, when I visited the restroom before leaving the restaurant, I saw this.


Yep, a mouthwash dispenser. Ha! A nice little touch. :)

In addition to the great good and fantastic drinks, we got goodie bags. Including a hawaiian shirt for each of us. A hulu doll. Plus some gift cards for next time.

And there will be a next time.


Disclaimer: All food and drinks were provided to me free of charge, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. And my husband's.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

They're back

Whiny Wednesdays

At least for this week.

I'm feeling a little whiny/grumpy/whateveryouwanttocallit, and thought it was time for a little Whiny Wednesday. Surprisingly, this is the first one of 2013, so I guess I'm doing pretty good. :-)

This morning, I declared this to be a REST day. I probably shouldn't have, but I just wasn't feeling it. After making this decision, I decided to step on the scale. THIS WAS A MISTAKE! I gained 3 pounds since the last time I stepped on. This wasn't terribly surprising since I've been feeling so hungry lately that I've been eating WAY too much. 

This should have motivated me to work out, but it didn't. Instead I decided to clean up my Inbox while eating breakfast (leftover pancakes with sliced bananas and maple syrup. Yum!) and watching GH.

Remember, how I wanted to ride my bike to work everyday in February? I don't know what I did exactly, but somehow I seem to have injured my coccyx (cuz that's more fun to say than tailbone) - making biking a wee bit painful. It seemed to be fine riding into work Monday morning, but the ride home was quite painful uncomfortable. I'm sure it's nothing serious, but it's irritating enough to keep me off my bike. Even sitting at work is annoying, but what's a girl to do? It's certainly not painful enough to call in sick.

I need more money. Doesn't everyone?? Jeff wants to buy all these things to improve our apartment and make our life more comfortable, but I'd rather grin and bear it and spend the money on trips to CA and/or races and/or nights out in Vegas. I'm trying to get on board with buying new appliances, but it's so hard for me to make that a priority. What if we don't end up staying in our apartment for at least 5 years? That's our current plan. Are new appliances, among other things, really necessary?

I mentioned my coccyx, but really I'm feeling a bit achy all over. I know some of it is still residual from Saturday's PR - the good kind of pain that reminds me of a job well done, but also my foot still hurts and I've added a little shin pain to the mix. Oh joy!

Also, I've been feeling fat lately. I know, I know. I'm not FAT, but sometimes I just feel like my tummy could really be a bit flatter. You only see pics of me really sucking it in. :-)

With feeling fat, comes feeling unattractive. I even got dressed this morning in my frumpiest looking outfit. I ended up changing into a different sweater before leaving the house, but honestly, it's not much better.

Ok. Enough with the whine! Time for lunch outside in the sunshine. That always makes me smile!

What are you whining about today?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

What's in YOUR Purse?


I usually lose at those What's in Your Purse? games at parties. I rarely carry a purse with me, but when I do, there isn't usually much in it. Any nothing all that unusual.

I considered doing something different for this week's listicle, but then I decided to go ahead and pull my purse out of the closet to see if there were even 10 things inside. Shockingly, there were. In fact, there were even a few more than what's on this list.

10 types of THINGS IN MY PURSE

  1. 3 pens
  2. 2 business cards (not mine)
  3. 1 temporary tattoo
  4. 1 DMV number/ticket thingy
  5. 2 containers of lip gloss (one with 6 different colors)
  6. 1 paper clip
  7. 1 tampon, 3 panty liners
  8. 1 crumpled up straw wrapper
  9. 1 movie stub
  10. 4 coins
Do you carry anything unusual in your purse?
Don't forget to swing by The good life to see what everyone else is hauling around.



January in Review

I started writing this post at the end of January and by start I mean, wrote one sentence, but then for some reason I decided to wait to write it until after my Feb 5K. Now, that was just plain silly as I should've know that a race recap would be long enough to be a post on it's own.

So, here's my January recap with a tiny bit of Feb thrown in.

I'll confess. I was none to sad to see January come to an end. Personally, it was a great month, but work was stressful and crazy busy. Unfortunately, that really clouded the month. Plus, it was cold here relatively speaking, and the cold always makes me a bit cranky.

Since I'm still super stoked about my 2013 goals, I thought I'd do my month-end reviews centered around those goals.

Run Faster.
I know this goal will take me all year, but I started January out with a Virtual Race that proved I hadn't fallen too far behind my previous PR.
Previous PR - 28:12
January's 5K - 28:24


If you read yesterday's post, you know that my new PR is 27:09, so I'm definitely heading in the right direction to be able to conquer that sub-25:00.

Eat Healthier.
Overall, I could have done much better with this. Honestly, convenience food is just so much more, um, convenient. After long, hard days at work, I just don't feel like doing anything for dinner. But I did manage to try two new recipes.



The egg rolls were delicious, but the soup was inedible. Seriously, so bad that we ended up throwing a frozen pizza in the oven.

Train Harder.
Again, I could've been much better about this. In total, I did 17 workouts, which comes out to roughly 4 a week. I guess that's not bad, but I think it was so disorganized. I really need to make a better plan for Feb.

Still, I can see some progress in my arms.


I had to flex the shit out of my arms to make Feb look as good as I did. By the end of the year, I want them to look good without have the flex. so. damn. hard. :-)

Read More.
I definitely read more in Jan this year than I did last year. It's been really nice bringing my Kindle with me to work and reading over lunch. A great little stress releaser.

I even finished 3 books. Unfortunately, I've only reviewed 1. Great reminder for me to write a review (or at least rate on Goodreads) for the other two.

Come Hell or High Water by Marvin Leblanc
I Never by Bradley Convissar
The Incredible Tito by Howard Fast

Serve More.
This one was kind of a struggle this month. My impact was small, but I figure, hey, at least I did something.

CharityMiles Impact
9.1 miles healthier through Partnership for a Healthier America
11.4 minutes of cancer research through Stand Up To Cancer
5.1 antiretroviral pills through (RED) to benefit The Global Fund

The last Sunday of the month, Jeff and I went to one of the nearby washes with a couple trash bags to pick up litter along the bike path. Neither of us were really in the mood to do it. Plus, it was really windy, so we ended up going for a much shorter time than we'd originally planned. Still we picked up one pretty full/heavy bag of trash.


Jeff also did a LOT of service in our apartment community. When we moved into a bigger apartment at the end of December, we were supposed to get a parking spot assigned to us, but the parking assignments were a mess. The manager wanted to revamp it and reassign all the spots, so they were more logical. Jeff volunteered hours creating maps and spreadsheets to make it easier for the office to assign and track. He could explain it much better, but he put in a lot of work into it. Secretly, I know he loved doing it, but the office still hasn't managed to implement it. I hope all his hard work wasn't in vain!

That about covers it for my 2013 goals, but here are a few other things I did.

I started a Happiness Project. Originally on this blog, but moved it over to its own home later.


I have managed to post a happy moment about each day, but there were a few that I cheated on by posting the next morning and just changing the post date to be for the previous evening. I'm so sneaky!

Wrote a couple great posts about running and staying healthy in college.


Tried a couple new products. here and here.

Had a fabulous date night with Jeff, which I still need to blog about.


All-in-all, really not a bad month. Except for that whole work thing.

How was your first month of 2013? If you wrote a post about it, please leave a link in the comments. I'd love to read all about it.
What are you most looking forward to in February?


National Heart Disease Awareness Month

TIP: Try switching out just one process food for something you make yourself. It doesn’t have to be complicated – it can be as simple as a soup. By switching over from processed foods, which are usually high in sodium, you can make a difference in your blood pressure and overall health.

**Facts/Tips from http://www.goredforwomen.org

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Run for a Wish 5K

As I mentioned in Thursday's post, I signed up to run the Run for a Wish 5K this morning. I didn't go into this expecting to get a PR, based on my foot still bothering me a bit + kind of a crappy-I-wanna-die treadmill run on Wednesday, but **spoiler alert** I totally did!

I got up early this morning to get ready for the race. I desperately need to shave. lol. And my hair was in need of some serious help. Seriously, it took way longer than it should have to get into two tiny pigtails and a headband. I just want it to grow faster.

I woke up my driver husband, ate some oatmeal, and headed out to the race. Sallie even came along for the ride. We parked a little later than I would've liked. I wasn't sure how long the line would be for me to get my race bib and t-shirt. Turns out I had plenty of time.

I kissed Jeff good-bye, met up with a friend, and headed to the start line. I wanted to start closer to the front of the pack than I did for the Great Santa Run, so we bobbed and weaved our way through crowds until we got to the front. Seeing the 4:00 mile sign was intimidating, so I convinced my friend we should move back a bit. We ended up starting right behind the 8:00 mile group.

Once the race started, my friend shot off super fast. I'd already started my Rock My Run mix, so I just pressed START on my watch as I crossed the start line. I started out a bit faster than maybe I should have, but I was just feeling the music and, even though I wasn't trying for a PR, I really wanted to push myself.

I stopped for water at the first water stop. Had a couple sips and then carried on. Truth be told, my tummy wasn't feeling exactly happy with me, and the water sloshing around wasn't helping.

But I continued pushing. I know I slowed down on the big hill. Both out and back. I skipped all other offers of water - holding out for bottles at the end of the race. Cuz I knew I'd be desperate by then.

Once we re-entered the parking lot, the 5K met up with the 1 mile walk. This was annoying because the walkers kept spreading out over the entire breadth of the road, leaving just a sliver for the runners.

Around mile 2.5 (I think), I started to speed up. I thought I was nearer the end than I really was. It probably wasn't a steady increase, but by the time I rounded that last corner, I was ready to sprint it out.

I finished STRONG and HARD, and was completely shocked when I pressed STOP on my watch as I crossed the finish line.

27:09



I was panting pretty hard by that time, so I barely had the energy to smile - let alone jump for joy. Inside, I totally was, though.

After finishing so hard, it took a few minutes for me to re-coup. I mean I was scaring all the children. My face has a tendency to get really red, and I noticed a few kids whispering to their parents if I was okay.

The best part of this race was the post-race haul. Mostly, because I totally wasn't expecting anything at all. I grabbed a bottle of water and a banana, and then was handed a goodie bag. The lady handing it to me said it looked like I really deserved it. LOL.


I was stoked about the water bottle and beach ball alone, but it also included a small bottle of sunscreen, lip balm, a pen, BOGO at Jamba Juice and Frost Bite, VIP passes to Stoney's, at $50 GC to Planet Beach (a contempo spa), and a $500 GC to RedStar World Wear. I normally don't really go through all the paper in the goodie bags, but I'm so glad that I did today!! I also got a t-shirt, of course, and 5-hour energy.

This was such a fun start race! Plus, the timing was pretty perfect, as I can use this race as double duty and count it for my February 5 by the 5th Virtual Race. Even if you didn't run this is January, you can still join in the fun. You've got plenty of time. Just saying.

What are you running this weekend?
Ever get surprised by a goodie bag after a race?

Friday, February 1, 2013

Go Red for Women + Getting Back to It

It's Friday!! It's February!!! Whoo hoo!!!

TODAY I'LL BE WEARING RED.

Red to raise awareness of the risk of heart disease. It's the #1 killer of women, and so many women myself included aren't really aware of the risks and the facts.

Today marks the 10-year anniversary of National Go Red Day. Visit the GoRedforWomen.org website for more information on heart disease, your risks, tips for living healthy and how to get involved.

Throughout the month, I'll also be displaying this little badge in my left sidebar linking you to the GoRedforWomen.org website.

Go Red Heart Disease

If you're a fellow blogger, please consider joining me for BlogYourHeartOut on Feb 22. Throughout February, I'll share random facts to help increase awareness and tips for prevention at the end of each post.

In the meantime, I need to get back to it. I haven't consistently commuted by bike since Nov, and I need to get started again. What better time to start than NOW!

The weather forecast has the temps around 45°F, 0% chance of precipitation, and a 3MPH W wind. A little chilly, true, but the rest seems pretty ideal.

I'd really, really like to bike every day to work throughout February. I've missed riding the past 12 weeks, but I've gotten so used to that extra half hour in the mornings. Have I luxuriated in extra sleep? Well, yes, but mostly I've been sucked into social media or writing a blog post.

There are so many more important reasons to use that half hour to bike instead of sitting in front of my computer.

  • Save gas and wear/tear on Liberty (our van)
  • Bragging rights at work for riding. Period. Bonus points for riding in the cold.
  • Great stress relief + increased endorphins
  • Guaranteed cardio 5 days a week and all those health benefits

In addition to biking every day, I need to get back on track with my other workouts and healthier eating. I need to make a plan. 

BUT first, I need to get ready for work, so I don't run out of time and end up driving instead of biking.

FACT: Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined.

TIP: If you can't bike to work, like I do, try parking further away from the office, choosing the stairs, taking a walk after lunch and standing up every hour at your desk to stretch.