Showing posts with label school. Show all posts
Showing posts with label school. Show all posts

October 16, 2015

Baltimore Running Festival Tips & Girls in STEM with Teza

It's been a whirlwind since Chicago so I'm still working on getting my expo and race recaps ready. For now check out some awesome other things going on around the interwebs! 

Check out my favorite Quick Workout Resources guest post on Nicole's blog, Fitful Focus. I share some of my favorite videos, youtube channels, websites, and DVDs I use to squeeze in a quick workout when I'm short on time.   

Attention all my Baltimore area runners racing in the Baltimore Running Festival this weekend!

Check out all these great race tips (including a few from yours truly) from this Baltimore Sun article which also includes an interactive marathon map.  I also did a guest post on BMOREtoned featuring my 5 tips for the Baltimore Running Festival half & full marathons-the post also includes an awesome running playlist from Jami.  

The Baltimore Running Festival included my 2nd ever half marathon in 2012 and first full marathon in 2013 which were both great experiences.  

Post-Baltimore Half Marathon 2012
Good luck to everybody racing this weekend! 

As a lady with a degree in chemistry and job in the medical research field as well as soon to be woman in healthcare, I am a huge supporting girls in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math education).  We need more ladies who love math and science to contribute and do great things in this country and around the world. I was contacted by Teza Technologies to help spread their message related to this and wanted to help share their latest campaign: 

September 30, 2015

5 Things to Do To Stay Sane In Grad School {plus juggling everything else}

The countdown to Chicago is on and I've made it just over a month into my first semester of grad school. Jumping into a professional Occupational Therapy Master's program has been exciting but crazy busy. Changing my schedule and dealing with lots of simultaneous projects, studying for classes, and fitting in the rest of my life drives me crazy some days.  Even if you aren't in school, these tips could be applied towards any busy week!  Here are some of the things I've been doing to try to balance school, work, fun, and marathon training.  


1. Schedule in at least one consistent stress-relief activity.
 For me I feel so much better with a morning run or sweat session and need to make time for it each week.  Some days lately I can't sneak a run in because of lack of sleep, schoolwork, work, and life but too many days of no runs would drive me crazy.  I need those easy morning runs with time to reflect and think before most of the city is awake.

The days I get morning views like this are the best. 
 In school we are always talking about occupational balance, and it's such an important concept. We need both work AND play in a balance. 

Morning runs don't have to be your thing. Maybe your thing is to always spend X night watching Netflix or going out to eat. Maybe your stress-relief activity is just morning yoga or spending extra time to leisurely cook a nice meal. Build it into your schedule.  

2. Portable snacks and food.
I don't know what it is about sitting in classes that makes me so hungry. With my days on campus packed mostly back-to-back with classes not only packing lunches but packing plenty of snacks is key.  I always makes sure I've got easy snacks like fruit, baby carrots, protein bars, and LesserEvil mini popcorn bags in my backpack for when I'm hungry and stuck in class. 

I try to find packaged snacks that have lots of protein and are satisfying. Quest Bars have been awesome because they have lots of protein and satisfy my sweet tooth. 

Quest Nutrition mint chocolate chunk bar
  Luckily we have access to a refrigerator so I can pack some of my favorite cold snacks like greek yogurts or the local skyr smoothies from B'more Organic.  This coffee-flavored smoothie has 46g of protein, no added sugar, and is easy to drink in class or on the go. 

B'more Organic Skyr Smoothies are an awesome for on the go. 

3. A planner. 
Being organized is the most important thing. There is NO way I can keep track of everything I need to be at, homework, tests, work, social events, races, and appointments without writing everything down in my planner. Also I need to plan out things like 6 months in advance, no joke. 

Find what organizational system works for you whether that be your phone, Google calendar, whatever. Write stuff down because otherwise you will forget everything and drive yourself crazy. 

Speaking of which, anyone have an affordable favorite planner suggestion?

4. A support system. 
I wouldn't make half my workouts lately if I wasn't meeting a group of people or knowing I told some November Project tribe members I'd be there. Having the purpose of meeting people is major accountability for getting my butt out of bed in the mornings. 

It's also about having family and friends and significant others that can help you out whether that's running that errand for you so you have one less thing to do, offering moral support, buying you chocolate, editing your papers, or offering up fun things to do in the little spare time you have.  Don't be afraid to rely and lean on people a little more during this stressful time. 

For example, I never would have gotten out of my warm bed to go do a track workout at 5:30 AM yesterday if it I didn't tell a group I'd meet up with them.

Post-track workout all-stars.
5. Coffee. Everyday. Anytime.
 Enough said. 
Truth bomb {source}
What is your best way to stay sane during really busy weeks?  Do you use a planner? What's your favorite one?

June 21, 2015

How to Afford More than Ramen When Going Back to Grad School

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post in partnership with College Ave Student Loans and Her Campus Media. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

I'm keeping it real and talking money today. In 2 months I'll be going back to graduate school for my Master's in Occupational Therapy.  Yes, I made the cut!, woop woop. I'm really excited about it all, but lately I've just been a bit stressed filling out tons and tons of paperwork.  

Going back to school while I'm still paying off undergraduate student loans is pretty daunting. 81% of students entering college understand the cost of education but still 80% of students don't have a plan to pay off student loan debt after graduation, which I understand. When I was an undergrad my dad cosigned my loans and helped me out with the paperwork.  Now the day of the month when both my rent and student loans come out of my paycheck is so sad, haha. 

Being on my own financially now has involved lots of time spent learning about loans. I  because amassing debt is scary. I wasn't completely sure how financial aid worked for graduate school, and the different types of loans and interest rates can be really confusing. 

Luckily my school has been really helpful and federal financial aid was enough. If not I was going to have to look for private loans, which can be really intimidating. One option to simplify loans is College Ave, an online marketplace with competitive rates, repayment options, and a mobile-friendly application that can give you a loan decision in less than three minutes.  You can use their tools to see if you pre-qualify and what your rates would be before you even apply for a loan. They have coverage for up to 100% of school-certified expenses with only a minimum loan amount of $2,000. 

Even though I didn't need their services, I really liked playing around on their loan calculator to clarify the total cost over the life of a loan and ways to save money by making payments during school or in fewer years afterwards.  

I need to be really conscious about my spending and managing my debt. It's amazing how in a blink of an eye you go from graduating college to being close to 30 and realizing you need to start creating actual savings accounts and retirement plans.  Yikes. 

Here's what I have been doing right now to try to save a few dollars. 

Because honestly I'm not 18 anymore and living off of pizza, mac and cheese, and ramen doesn't cut it! 


1. Budget 

It's really obvious, yet it's so easy to spend money when you are just swiping a credit card or online shopping.  I've used sites like in the past, but now just make a rough pen and paper estimate for amounts to spend on specific categories each month.  I've got more responsibility now that I'm 27 and not 18, so I make sure my bills & school expenses are taken care of before anything else. 

2. Use Cash 

Recently, I've started taking out cash for the week for minor purchases like coffees or lunches because it's easier for me to stick to my budget. Also something about purchasing with physical cash makes me think twice about my spending. 

3. Discounts

Besides always asking if there are student discounts with my student ID,  I am always am on the lookout for coupons & discounts. Yep, I'm that girl in the grocery store flipping through her coupon folder as she shops. I always check for coupons on RetailMeNot and use Ebates for online shopping .  

Also my favorite place to buy textbooks online is BigWords. I found it halfway through my college and have used it ever since. You can see prices from online sellers and book rentals all in one place.  

4. Buy Only What You Need 

This one can be hard sometimes! I definitely need to prioritize my purchases, which means not being able to do each and every thing that sounds fun.  With more limited work hours and less income this becomes especially important. That means being conscious with my spending habits like only buying food I'll eat. More sticking to my shopping lists and less Whole Foods yolo purchases. 

5. Reused & Recycled

Besides always trying to be used textbooks and supplies I need for school, it's amazing what you can buy used.  People have so many things that there is always bound to be someone getting rid of just you need on Craiglist, eBay or at Goodwill.  I buy & sell clothes on consignment from apps like Poshmark (see my closet here) or places like Plato's Closet.  

If you are going back to school or are in school too, check out the #CollegeGoals Instagram scholarship challenge. Now through June 30, share your college goals for a chance to win prizes including a $5,000 scholarship and $50 Chegg textbook credits.  
Because who couldn't use a little extra money for school? 

What's your favorite tip for saving money? How did you save money in school? 

This was linked up with Weekend Snapshots.

December 12, 2014

5 Gifs that Describe How it Feels to Apply to Graduate School {Friday Five 12/12/2014}

Right now, I'm in the midst of applying to graduate school programs for occupational therapy because like many, I need to go back to school for the career I want. I just want to help people!  Sadly, the graduate program application process is  torturous-especially during the holiday season. It's been consuming all my time and brainpower! And it's ridiculously stressful.  

Here's 5 gifs this Friday that perfectly describe the process of applying to graduate school: 

1. You usually have to take the GRE.

It's a 4 hour admissions test with verbal, quantitative (a.k.a math you learned in high school and don't use like figuring out the degrees of an unknown angle in a triangle), and writing sections. I took it after work one evening (WHY), and I hope I don't have to take it again. It's long, tiring, hard, and stressful. 

 4 hours in a testing room with nothing but the test on a computer made me want to ask: 

Seriously, I couldn't bring snacks or a drink inside. 

2. Why do I have to take out a loan just to apply to graduate school?

Seriously it costs around $75-100 to apply to each school.  After I already spent money to take the GRE, take pre-requisite classes at a community college, and now I need to pay a bunch more? On top of still paying off my undergraduate student loans?