December 7, 2016

5 Winter Workout Items to Put On Your Wish List {and Athleta Giveaway from one of the best gyms in Pittsburgh}

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by XShadyside. The giveaway gift card is provided by and will be delivered by XShadyside for my readers.

 I'm currently still recovering from my injury, but I can't wait for the day soon that I get to start running again. I'm going to start adding in some workouts this week after not having gotten my sweat on in over a month. That means I'm definitely adding some fun winter running and workout clothes to my Christmas Wish List. Who am I kidding, I rock tights and running clothes as part of my regular wardrobe even if I'm not working out. Here are five items I have my eye on from my favorite brands. 


Also thanks to one of the best gyms in Pittsburgh, there's a giveaway below for a $25 Athleta gift card so you can treat yourself before the holidays! 


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5 Winter Workout Apparel Items to Put On Your Wish List 

1. Women's Distance Long Sleeve Running Shirt from Brooks Running ($44)
This is my favorite color and the shirt looks SO comfortable for working out or lounging around. 

2. Spandos Jane Bra from Oiselle ($64)
I LOVE all of the Spandos line which sells out fast. This bra offers nice coverage and is super cute. 

3. Run It Out Tight (in midnight tulle multi) from Lululemon ($98)
I've tried on these tights and love the fit plus they have a few nice-sized pockets and reflective details on the bottom.  

4. UA Streaker women's running long sleeve shirt from Under Armour ($59.99)
Obviously I'm a huge UA fan so I'm always checking out their new gear. I love how this is a lightweight and wicking hoodie. 

5. Polartec® Colorblock Powerlift Tight 2.0 from Athleta ($78 on sale!)

I don't own any workout gear from Athleta, just a few of their dresses. However I love the look of these warm winter tights and especially the side pockets that are big enough to fit my smartphone.

Thanks to one of the best gyms in Pittsburgh XShadyside, you can enter the Rafflecopter below to win a $25 gift card to Athleta to buy a gift for yourself. I am super happy to offer a little holiday moolah to my readers! 


What running or fitness gear is on your wish list? 

December 5, 2016

How to Survive Being an Injured Runner


Disclosure: I received Mizuno winter gear through a campaign with Fitfluential, LLC. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

I survived 3.5 weeks in a boot due to a  a stress fracture and over a month of not running or working out really at all. This crazy runner lady has not run in over a month. If I can do it so can any injured runner. Honestly being swamped with school and work has made the time fly by.  I still am in a little bit of a funk and just got cleared to seated cycle so I'm hoping to hit the gym and start working on my cardio again this week. Running and working out makes me feel good about myself and is stress-relieving so it has been a difficult transition. Here's some of the ways I found to make an injury bearable. 

How to Survive Being an Injured Runner

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1. Catch up on sleep. 

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I have been running on fumes for the past 6 months and have been trying to catch up on sleep on the weekends because I was averaging 6 hours of sleep a night during the week. I don't know what caused my stress fracture, but I'm assuming that lack of solid sleep and recovery may have played a factor.  No early morning runs or workouts means an extra hour or so of sleep!

2. Netflix and chill, literally. 

Netflix-marathons
At the moment at least! {source}

I spent lots of time relaxing on the couch, putting my foot and boot up, and catching up on my Netflix queue, guilt-free. Find a new show to binge when you get home from work or school. I'm currently making my way through Parenthood-it's SO good.  

3.  Stay off of social media. 

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{Source}
I've taken a step back from social media with my injury because honestly it sucks having so many fit friends. Instead of positive motivation, seeing lots of photos of people running, working out, and racing is a bit depressing. Seeing photos and videos of dogs, cats, and Christmas decorations has been lovely though!  If scrolling through Instagram and seeing a million photos of friends racing makes you feel blue, don't do it! 

4.  Spend time with family and friends. 

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Having a forced rest period has given me more of an opportunity to hand out with family and friends. I've spent some more time watching TV with my boyfriend. I also spent 5 days hanging out with my family for Thanksgiving break.  Use this opportunity to call and catch up with friends, plan time to spend with family, and catch up on other hobbies you may not have had a chance to do in a while.  

5. Rest and listen to your doctor. You will come back stronger than before.

When my doctor said that I had to rest and could only swim, I was bummed out. I tried a couple upper body workouts, but my heart wasn't in it so I decided to just rest. I figured fully resting would actually help my foot heal better instead of trying to sneak in half-assed workouts or not listening to my doctor. There is nothing I could do to speed up the process of healing. 

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I still wear running clothes like these awesome winter running gear from Mizuno which features Breath Thermo technology. This shirt is so light, comfortable, yet warm!  I was lucky enough to have a pretty thorough doctor and went from an X-Ray to MRI and even had a bone denisty scan done to make sure everything was okay. Ask questions! 

Embrace the #Bootlife. You will survive! 

This post was linked up with Running Coaches'  Corner #38

What do you do when you can't run? What are you watching on Netflix right now?

November 23, 2016

Things Runners are Thankful for

On a serious note, I'm beyond grateful each day for my health, my family, my ability to go to graduate school and work, as well as all of the opportunities and amazing things in my life. 

Despite currently not being able to run (#bootlife), I am also so thankful for the sport of running and all that it has given me. 

Remember to not only eat lots of delicious food today but also to appreciate what you have and donate to a good cause this holiday. I plan to donate to the LiveUp Programs and Planned Parenthood this holiday season and have already donated some coats, hats, and scarves to a local collection in Baltimore. 

On a funny note, here are some things that runners are grateful for: 


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Things Runners are Thankful for 

1. BodyGlide because chafing is THE WORST. 

2 Cold beers after races because if you drink beer, a cold one after a race tastes amazing. 

3. Race volunteers These wonderful people who help out at races, work at water stations, and cheer for runners early in the morning are awesome.  

4. Public bathrooms I'm looking at you, Starbucks. 

5. Port-a-potties (that actually have toilet paper!) 

6. Free race photos because aren't race registrations pricey enough? 

7. Water fountains which are amazing during those hot & humid summer long runs. 

8.  Friends who will meet you for a 5 AM run and give you an extra push to get out of bed to get in some miles before the sun comes up. 

9. Carbohydrates  -a runner's favorite food group. 

10.  Foam Rollers because it hurts so good. 

11. New running shoes which always make me happy. 

12. Race discounts Because things are getting priceyyyy. 

13. Washing machines When your hamper is 90% workout gear. 

14. Well-marked race courses because no one likes running extra or getting lost during a race. 

15. Earth for offering so many beautiful places to see and run! 

Oh and pie. Pizza pies and sweet pies. 

Happy Thanksgiving! Wishing you a safe and happy holiday. 

What are you thankful for? What is your favorite part of Thanksgiving? 


November 18, 2016

{Friday Favorites} Grilled Cheese, BCAAs, and StrideBox

Disclosure: I received 3 complimentary boxes from StrideBox. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Happy Friday! It's been a while so I decided to share some of my favorites from the past couple of weeks. I haven't run at ALL in 2 weeks, and it's been okay. I am letting myself rest and recover while I'm in the boot. 3 weeks of no exercise won't kill me. Besides I have a LOT of studying to occupy myself with this weekend.  Be sure to enter my blog birthday giveaway

Favorite Easy Cause to Support: Tab for a Cause

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So I I'm one of those people who always has tons of tabs open in my Google Chrome Internet browser window. I can't help it. I've always have a few tabs I'm actively using, a few that I am saving to work with later as a reminder, plus constantly am clicking on things. My friend Kate suggested checking out Tab for a Cause, an internet browser extension that replaces your tab page with a beautiful page that raises money for charity. It's free and for every tab you open, you earn hearts which you can choose to give to your favorite charity. The extension's sponsors provide money to charity divide all the money raised amongst the charities based on the number of Hearts donated to each charity/cause. 

 It hasn't slowed my internet down, and if my excessive internet browsing can help a charity that is awesome! 

Favorite Snail Mail: StrideBox

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October's StrideBox goodies

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November's StrideBox

StrideBox reached out to me a few months ago offering to send me some complimentary monthly boxes. StrideBox is a monthly subscription box for runners that includes a set of curated running gear, accessories, and nutrition products in each box. Now I had done subscription boxes before such as Birchbox and BuluBox and always found that it ended up being a waste of money because I wasn't really using any of the products. I just ended up with bags of samples or things I threw out so I really was turned off by them. So far the StrideBoxes I've received have had some cool products and a nice variety. There was cool gear like the blinking light for running and some YogiTea which I love in the most recent box. This is a cool gift for the runner on your Christmas list!


Favorite Supplement: Slap Nutrition Salted Caramel BCAAs

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I had tried supplementing with BCAAs because they are shown to reduce muscle soreness  and may assist in muscle-protein synthesis or building. However I honestly don't have the time or the brain power to remember to take multiple pills, supplements, powders. Also a lot of the flavors didn't taste super great for the powder forms so I stopped. I found Slap Nutrition and was intrigued by the short list of ingredients and unique flavors. This Salted Caramel BCAA powder tastes so good when mixed with something. There is a bit of a fake sweetness taste I found when mixed with just water, so I always mix it with almond milk or coffee.  

In the summer I was mixing these in with an iced coffee after runs for a yummy caramel coffee treat. I am still taking it despite not running or really working out at the moment, hoping to help anything that needs recovering in my foot-plus it just tastes good. 

Favorite Baltimore News: 'Homeless Veterans...Baltimore Bike Share' from The Baltimore Sun

I love Baltimore because despite its problems, there are many amazing people trying to do good things here.  I was especially touched by this article describing how Baltimore's new bike share program is being serviced by a few homeless veterans. As a future occupational therapist the man's story they profile is everything about changing your life and 'becoming' through doing something.  

Favorite Easy Dinner: Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup

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As the temperatures start to drop, I crave warm and comforting meals for dinner. I have whipped up some grilled cheese and tomato soup for dinner a few times because it's filling, quick to prepare, and reminiscent of my when my mom would make me this for lunch or dinner( she still makes the best grilled cheeses!). 

This post was linked up with my fave Friday Linkup ladies with Nicole and Amanda .

What is one of your favorite cold weather meals? Do you pay for any monthly subscription boxes?

November 16, 2016

My 4th Blogiversary {Prize Pack Fit Giveaway}

Disclaimer: I was sent complimentary flowers by ProFlowers. I mean, who doesn't like being sent flowers? 

Okay so my 4th blogiversary happened to fall on the day of the Chicago Marathon so it was overshadowed by all that fun and now the subsequent craziness of school and #bootlife afterward.  Thanks so much to ProFlowers for reaching out and sending me a lovely congratulatory blog birthday bouquet, which totally sparked me actually celebrating my blog's birthday. I love having fresh flowers in the apartment-they totally brighten my day. 


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Beautiful Autumn Birthday Wishes bouquet
I've grown a lot blog-wise and personally in the past 4 years. Plus I've run like a LOT more races. As I stated in my very first post, I'm still trying to find peace and balance in my life. I think I get a little bit closer every day. I'm full of gratitude to have my little corner of the Internet to share my thoughts, cool product finds, race recaps, struggles, and accomplishments. I'm mostly grateful for all of the wonderful adventures and people I've met through this blog and places it's lead me. 


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I'm still not a super fancy blogger and despite pretending to be a food blogger, fitness model, fashion blogger, or professional runner some days, I still have plenty of work to do. However I like to laugh at how far I've come. A few phone upgrades also helped a lot! There's many rambling blog posts, terrible dark photos, and messy early posts. I've thought about cleaning some up and maybe I'll refurbish them into new posts, but I like leaving those behind. It's authentic, it's me, and it's something to look back on! 

Here's a couple photos from 2013 that are too bright, dark, and have that lovely chipped nail polish. 


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But for real, I'll cherish my first marathon medal forever. 

In contrast, I've learned a thing or two in 2016 and have a long way to go! 


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Can I just go back to Seawheeze and Vancouver? 

Here's to a even better 5th year of blogging with more running, adventures, and FRIENDS! 


To celebrate and thank all of my fabulous readers I decided to throw together a little fitness prize pack giveaway with not one but TWO winners.  Each winner will receive a prize pack including some of the following: Bondiband headbands, Vibrant Health protein powder packets, Momentum Jewelry, Nuun Hydration electrolyte tablets, Sweat Pink shoelaces, Run10Feed10 bracelets, and a few more goodies. Enter using the Rafflecopter below! 



4th-blogiversary-giveaway


a Rafflecopter giveaway This giveaway ends November 23rd, 2016, 12 AM EST. The winner will be notified via email right away. If I don’t hear back from the winner within 24 hours I’ll have to pick a new winner. Prize and delivery of prize is from me and is not associated with any of the brands included in the prize pack.  

What is your favorite topic to read about on blogs? What do you like to see on my blog? 
 
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