Weekly Wrap Up

Hey there my lovely friends, I hope you are having a great morning.  I know we are gearing up here in MA for a Nor’easter so this week should be interesting!!  How was your weekend?  I hope it was awesome! Ours was kind of all over the place since the snow soiled some of our plans, but all in all it was great!  Let’s take a look at what the week looked like with the Weekly Wrap Up!

Week: 1/19-1/25

Monday: I ran 3 miles at an easier pace for me while watching White Collar.  Afterwards I lifted upper body and stretched.  On a side note, I love White Collar and am really sad this is the last season.  Any other fans out there?

Tuesday: I woke up and wasn’t feeling too into a workout but I pulled it together and did a 3 mile progression run that felt pretty awesome and then worked abs and lifted chest.  Are you seeing more of a lifting theme this week?

Wednesday: I got into work and our fitness director immediately came up to me and let me know that Erin, our spin instructor was our sick this morning so they were going to have one of the PTs so a mix class. I was pretty bummed since I look forward to this class all week.  Before class I decided to do some burpees and upper body lifting before I went into the spin studio.  Once I was there, a few of us regulars decided we would run our own spin class.  We plugged in Spotify, each picked a few of our fav songs and decided we would each teach those tracks.  It was actually pretty fun and I think Erin would have been impressed with our class!

Thursday: Keeping on my running/lifting theme, I did a fast 5k and then lifted back and did abs.  It was a hard, to the point workout and then I was done.

Friday: It was my birthday and I started off my 34th year with box jumps and a heavy lifting circuit followed by 20 mins of HIIT on the treadmill that nearly killed me. My butt hurt so badly after my lifting that I worried for what the rest of the day was going to bring, but I suppose it was time to go hard or go home, right? HA!  After work, Robyn took Ashton and I out to a nice dinner where we had the most incredible homemade pasta.  It was one of the best meals I have had out in a LONG time.  Even Robyn, the biggest food critic said it was great!  To cap off the night.I came home to some wonderful gifts and my favorite homemade cake (key lime with key lime frosting) for which Ashton dug in immediately! HA!  All in all, it was a wonderful birthday!

cake

Saturday: We woke up and the snow had already started and was coming down hard.  Ashton’s swim class was cancelled and my hairdresser called saying she couldn’t make it into the salon, so my hair appointment was cancelled as well.  I was a little panicked as I had a 4 day conference that I needed my hair done for, but there wasn’t much I could do about it.  So, we lazed around the house and did a lot of cuddling and playing.

watching tv

We also went outside and did some sledding, which of course led to this…

cocoa

After a long day being cooped up inside, I put Ashton to bed and did this Pure Barre Workout. I had never done anything Pure Barre before and I have to say, I liked it.  I wouldn’t give up running to do it, but these shorter videos are perfect and pack a punch so I hope to incorporate them into my routine a few times a week.

Sunday: Remember how I said my hairdresser had to cancel my appointment on Saturday?  Well she called and the owner allowed her to open the shop just for me on Sunday morning so I could get my hair done and not look like a hot mess for my conference.  She is pretty much the best hairdresser ever!  After my appointment, I had an appointment at a different place to get Ashton’s haircut, so we were both a bit more cleaned up!  Only one of us got a lollipop after our cut though! :)

haircuts

During Ashton’s nap I did laundry and packed for my conference.  ***WARNING–TMI coming!!***When Ashton got up, we played for a bit and then he got to watch Frozen as a reward for FINALLY pooping on the potty.  Sorry guys but this is a HUGE deal in our house since he has been peeing on the potty since July but refused to poop.  He ended up pooping 3 times on the potty and we made a ridiculously big deal about it.  We have been at 85% potty trained for months and I REALLY want to get rid of diapers ASAP! Keep your fingers crossed that this continues!

watching frozen

While we were watching Frozen, my phone kept going off so I finally checked it to see what was such a big deal and it was a bunch of emails and texts saying that due to the Nor’easter that is supposed to start Monday afternoon, my work conference has been cancelled. I have to say, I was THRILLED! I REALLY didn’t want to spend 3 nights away from my boys, so it was great news to me (plus, no one wants to be stuck somewhere during a blizzard!)

So that is the Weekly Wrap Up!  Overall, I am happy with how the week played out. I got in some good runs, incorporated more lifting in my schedule and continued to cross train and tried out a new video.  I am still killing my water goal and I am likely bagging out of work early today and working from home for the next few days, so all in all, I am happy!

With that, have a great Monday friends!  If you are going to get hit with this blizzard, stay warm and safe–and remember to lift with your legs! :)

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Question of the day

How was your weekend?  Anyone else go sledding?

 

2015 Reading Challenge

It’s no secret that I love to read, I mean, I read well over 100 books in 2014!  Crazy? I know, but I just love to get lost in a good book!  I even joined Oyster (you can get a month free with this link if you want to try it), a Netflix-like monthly subscription for book lovers where I can read unlimited books from my phone, tablet, etc every month for only $15.  That is like putting candy in my hand.  So, when my friend Christen posted on FB that she was doing the Popsugar 2015 Reading Challenge and asked if anyone would be interested, I immediately jumped online to check it out and of course, decided I was in.  Not only was this a cool challenge, but it would push me out of my reading comfort zone and force me to read books in different genres.  So, I have been reviewing the categories and trying to find books that fit into each area of the challenge.  Here is the list:

pop sugar

I am finding that a lot of the books may land in multiple categories so I can pick and choose where I will use each of them.  Some of these categories are a piece of cake but others will be tough for me, like a graphic novel or play (I thought I left these behind in school?!) These are not in my wheelhouse of things I love to read, but I guess that is what the challenge is all about, expanding my horizons!!

I started the 2015 Reading Challenge off by reading Robin LaFevers’ first book in the His Fair Assassin trilogy, Grave Mercy.  I highly recommend it.  It is set in 15th-century France and has war, romance, and assassin nuns, its pretty awesome.  Christen actually recommended it and I am SO glad she did, since she and I seem to like a lot of the same books!

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I quickly finished this one and flew through the second (which I think I may have liked better than the first if that is possible!!) They are SO good! I can’t wait to start the last book–right after I finish the book I am currently reading, another great one…American Sniper which is a true story about U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle who has recorded the most career sniper kills in US military history.  They just made a movie about it, which I look forward to seeing after I finish the book!

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Question of the day

What are you currently reading? Are you doing the Popsugar challenge?  Any books I HAVE to check out?

Weekly Wrap Up

Hey friends..Happy Monday!  Are you working today like me or do you have the day off for MLK Day?  I love holiday traffic, I flew into work today and it’s going to be a relatively quiet day at work since most people with kids in school are out today!  That means I will actually get my work done during the day and not have to take it all home with me to do it when Ashton goes to bed, I am already calling today a win!!  So, let’s recap what happened around here last week, shall we?

Week: 1/12-1/18

Monday:  I am still trying to get my body used to running a few days a week again and I am keeping my mileage pretty low for now and not doing any speed work or anything until I have a few weeks under my belt.  I got in a comfortable 3.33 miles and then I did some weighted burpees! I am a freak, I love burpees–sorry, I know most people hate them, but I think they are awesome!  You work your whole body and get so much more “bang for your buck” with this move!!  

Tuesday: Another day of running, I did a 5k tempo where I warmed up for 1/4 of a mile and then did 2.5 miles at an 8:30 pace and then a 1/4 mile cool down. It wasn’t anything crazy but it did the job.  I worked core after I was done and stretched.

Wednesday: I got into work earlier than usual and got some lifting in before my usual Wednesday morning spin class.  You all know how much I love my spin instructor Erin and this class, and her music just rocks.  I have been playing around with my playlist lately and I randomly heard this song a few weeks ago and I feel in love with it…well, it found itself into Erin’s spin playlist too and it just solidified why I love her!  She used it for a long hill climb, it was awesome.  Music is a total motivator for me, if the music is good, I can push through anything, if not, I’m dead in the water.

Thursday: I still haven’t made it to my Thursday morning yoga class since we got back from the break.  I want to, its just that I have to decide between cardio or yoga because I just don’t have enough time to do both in the mornings and I think my break from running has left me craving more runs, so I banged out a quick 5k and finished off with some abs.  I know I have to get back to my yoga practice though!

Friday:  I started to run but only made it about 1/10 of a mile and my knee was telling me no, so I listened and jumped off.  I ended up getting on the stair climber–aka the machine from hell and did a super sweaty 3,000 steps while watching Hart of Dixie (judge away, I love Rachel Bilson!)  After work I picked up Ashton and we went to our favorite little cafe for smoothies…it was the best way to kick off the weekend!

ash and i at nu cafe

Saturday: We had a really busy Saturday starting with swim lessons with Ashton.  He is in a preschool class now where we don’t go in the water with him.  When did my baby become such a big boy?

ash swim

He is loving class and doing such a great job.  It makes me so happy to watch him learn new things and enjoy them, but another part of me is so sad at how quickly he is becoming an independent little boy.

After swim we had lunch and while he took a nap, I popped in T25 Beta Ripped Circuit. I needed something quick so I had enough time to shower and get some work done before he woke up because we had a busy night planned.  It’s amazing how when I used to do this video a few months ago, it was challenging but when I did in on Saturday, it was *almost* too easy.  I mean, it’s never easy but I felt comfortable doing it.  It really further shows me how much stronger I have gotten over the past few months and I think a lot of it had to do with the Asylum program.  I am lifting more and feeling stronger than ever!  Now I just have to keep up the strength!

After Ashton woke up, we got ready to go out to dinner.  We made early reservations at a Mexican restaurant downtown because we were taking Ashton to see Sesame St Live!!  He was mesmerized and had a blast!  He danced, sang and kept saying “Mama this is so much fun!”  Melted my heart every single time!

sesame st

If you would have told me 3 years ago that my idea of a good time would be eating dinner at 4:30 p.m. and going to see Sesame St Live, I would have laughed at you, now…I couldn’t think of anything I’d rather do.  Seeing him smile and laugh like that is the best way to spend my time!

Sunday: Rest day! It was the perfect rest day because it was pouring and dark all day, so we hung out, played a lot of board games and Ashton asked if I would take a nap with him, so that is exactly what I did. I can’t remember the last time I took a nap!  I curled up on his giant bean bag and passed out for 2 glorious hours! (We have a webcam and Robyn took a pic of us sleeping)

Zhome_2015-01-18_150206

I am pretty happy with the week, I am KILLING my water intake goal (I am averaging in the 90’s instead of my 70’s goal) and I am feeling really good.  I am pretty happy with my workouts.  I want to increase my mileage but I am playing it safe which I know is the smart thing to do.  I want to write out a more concrete plan in the next few days, but all in all, it’s been a good week.

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Question of the day

Are you working today?  If not, what are you doing?  How was your week?

 

Nākd Natural Balance Bars {Product Review}

Hey my healthy friends, Happy Wednesday!  To celebrate the half way point in the week, I am excited to share with you a new to me product, Nākd bars.  A few weeks ago I received an email from Greg from Total Media asking if I would be interested in trying Nākd bars from a UK company called Natural Balance Foods.  After a little bit of research on the company and the product, I emailed him back saying I would definitely be interested in trying them out.  Two days later, I had this beautiful box of delicious goodness delivered to my house.

nakdI loved the presentation of the bars and the box with it’s “Hello Gorgeous” on the top just made me smile (great marketing Nākd!!)

What first drew me in when doing my research was that Nākd is a brand that truly prides themselves on not only being wheat, gluten and dairy free, but their bars contain 100% natural ingredients.  Their Nākd snack bars are made from 100% raw fruit and nuts and contain no added sugar or syrups, which I think is pretty spectacular!  Depending on the bar’s flavor, the bars contain mostly dates, cashews, almonds, pecans, and raisins and you can pronounce every ingredient in their bars! Another added benefit is that their fruit-based bars also count towards one of your 5 fruits a day–pretty sweet!

We are all really busy people, juggling a lot of priorities.  May of us start our days in the wee hours of the morning getting in our daily workouts then commuting to work, working a full day then commuting back home where some of us are running after our kids, dogs, etc. I don’t know about you, but it can be really hard for me to find 30 minutes free during the work week to eat anything. I am usually shaking my blender bottle with my protein shake on my way to my first meeting of the morning and am in back to back meetings until the end of the day on most days.  That leaves me super hangry by 3 p.m. and it would be great to have some sort of healthy sustenance for my commute home.  As much as I’d love to grab a bar to snack on during the day, most bars, protein or otherwise, are not a good option for me as most contain sugar alcohols like sorbitol and my body cannot handle them without severe discomfort, so I tend to stay away from most bars.  Plus, most of them are packed with tons of sugar and processed junk so I’d rather not eat them.  Did you know:

“A typical cereal bar can contain as many as 30 ingredients, many of which are completely unrecognizable and several of which are actually just various types of sugar. Despite what it says on the pack we all know that these heavily processed, syrup-laden and additive-filled cereal bars are not really ‘healthy’ at all!”

That’s a pretty big difference in the list of ingredients, don’t you think?

In my box, I got 18 bars in a variety of flavors like berry delight, cashew cookie, cocoa mint, pecan pie, cocoa orange and caffe mocha to name a few!  Before writing this review, I wanted to be able to try 1 of each flavor so that I could be confident in my review with you all.

Overall, these are great bars.  The flavors were really good, with my favorite being cocoa mint or berry delight and my least favorite was Rhubarb &  Custard.  They are pretty small in size (which makes them perfect for a quick snack) but they are very dense bars and remind me a lot of Lara bars in their look and consistency.  I have used them as both pre and post workout fuel and quick on the go snacks.  Ashton really enjoyed them as well and I even caught him reaching into the box to “grab a bar” for himself when I wasn’t looking (sneaky little kid!!)

I had two negatives to the bars, but neither one is something that would stop me from eating them.  First is that the nutritional content is in kcals (which makes sense because its a UK brand) but I like to know how many calories are in each bar from the packaging (depending on the flavor, they range from 130-160 per bar with 3-4 grams of protein.) I wasn’t hard to get on my phone and do the calculation, but I would have preferred it to be right on the packaging in calories. For a lot of people this is not a big deal, it was just a minor thing I would have changed.

Additionally, these bars are kind of high in sugar. Although it is all natural sugars from dates, raisins, etc as they do not add any additional sugar, they clock in at 11-18 grams per bar.  Again, while higher in sugar, for me, natural sugar is always better than added or chemical substitutes so I was okay with this as well, but I feel its an important thing to point out when doing a review.

I know that once I am through with this box, I will definitely be restocking on them as they are perfect when I am running in between meetings or after my morning workout before I have a chance to make my protein shake.

The good news is that Nākd has arrived in the US!  You can purchase via their website right now with free shipping (the sampler box is only $9.99!) and they will be coming to US stores shortly so be on the lookout!  If you live in Canada, you can find them in stores now. Be sure to visit their website to check out more about this great company and their products!

 ***Disclaimer: Natural Balance Foods sent me a box of bars in exchange for a review but as always, all opinions are my own.***

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Question of the day

Do you regularly eat bars? What brand? Have you heard of Nākd bars before?

Weekly Wrap Up

Good morning and happy Monday my friends!  I hope you all had a great weekend!  Our weekend started off slow and then got busier as it went on, but it was a lot of fun.  A good mix of activities and relaxing with my boys, just what I needed after a long and busy week at work!  So without further adieu…here is the Weekly Wrap Up!

Week: 1/5-1/11

Monday: It was my first day back at work in almost a month, I woke up 30 minutes before my alarm with first day of school work jitters.  The good part about waking up early is that I was able to leisurely get out of bed, wash my face, brush my teeth and hair at a normal pace instead of my frantic usual pace so I can get out the door ASAP.  I got into work early which was great (still not rushing) and I got in my first run in over a month!! I did 4 miles at an 8:42 pace and I felt good, like really good, which proves to me that Asylum really did make a difference in my strength. If I could sustain that pace without putting in a maximum effort, it clearly helped me!  Afterwards I did some planks for about 10 mins and called it a morning.  In the evening I did the #30dayyogachallenge after I put the monster to bed.

Tuesday: I knew my legs would feel my run the day before, but overall they weren’t too mad at me.  My IT band was a bit tight (nothing bad at all, just a slight twinge) but I still wanted to run, so I did 3 miles. I kept my paces in the higher 8’s and I felt good. Afterwards, I did 3 sets of 8 of weighted burpees and quickly finished with a 3 minute plank hold.

Wednesday: YAY!! I was SO SO SO excited to get back to my regular Wednesday morning spin class!  I missed this class so much while I was on vacation.  It was good to see all my spin buddies and our instructor Erin!  It was a great class and I was a sweaty mess afterwards.  We did a class full of hill work, so my legs were a bit sore going into the class from my running and the hills didn’t do them any favors, but I made sure to stretch out a lot after class and was thankful I was wearing my flat riding boots at work all day!  Heels would definitely not have been a good idea!

Thursday: I thought about doing my usual vinyasa yoga class in the morning but I really wanted to run so I did 3.33 miles in 30 minutes. I took it pretty slow and I started Season 5 of White Collar on Netflix on my phone while I ran.  Since I am not teaching Group Power in the evenings anymore, I wanted to get in a more intense workout than yoga. I don’t know what I am going to do moving forward because I really like taking a yoga class at least once a week, but I want to get my cardio in as well….#firstworldproblems

Friday: I ended up waking up really early (again!!) because I was stressed about my day at work.  So, I left my house earlier than usual so I had enough time to get in 5 miles before my first meeting of the morning. I watched White Collar again while I ran and the run seemed to fly by.  I kept it at an easy 8:57 pace and then I stretched when I was done and did some planks and called it a day.

Saturday: Ashton had his last sports class last week :( so we decided to go back to swim lessons this session and see how it went.  We put him in swim at 6 months old and went every week until about 3 months ago.  He was not loving the whole parents are no longer in the water with you class that he was bumped up to last time so we had decided to give him some time away to see if he would come back better.  Let’s just say it was a totally different experience and he LOVE it this time around, let’s hope this wasn’t a fluke!  How cute is this picture? (Ash is on the left)

2015-01-10 10.04.14

After swim we stopped for smoothies at a local cafe and then headed home for a nap.  Once Ashton was asleep I did Asylum Strength.  I really loved the Asylum program and now that it’s done, I am going to still incorporate some of the videos into my weekend workouts since they are so good.  I think the strength workout will be my go to video since I am not teaching Group Power on Thursday’s anymore and I need to get in weight training.  We were going to go to the library when Ashton woke up because they have this great toddler play area, but we looked online and they closed at 4 p.m. so we ended up having a game night at the house instead.  Ashton is obsessed with board games, which makes Robyn and I so happy because we love them ourselves.  We have about 6 toddler board games right now but his favorites are Orchard and Monza.  We played games for about 1.5 hours and he insisted on wearing my hat while playing. I may have to get him a newsboy hat because he looked so adorable wearing mine!

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Sunday: REST DAY!! We met our friends and their boys at Sky Zone for their 2 hour toddler jump and the boys had a blast.

skyzone

Seriously, if you ever want to laugh really hard, go to Sky Zone.  Watching kids run, jump and fall over is hysterical, I got in a good ab workout that way!  After the toddler jump was over, we finished off the morning/early afternoon with a trip to Wegman’s.  It is seriously like a candy store for adults, I LOVE grocery shopping there (so does Ashton!!)  I thought briefly about doing some yoga during nap time, but honestly, my body needed the total rest so I decided to start organizing my pictures of Ashton for 2014 so I can get started soon on his yearly picture book.

So that is the Weekly Wrap Up!  Overall, I was pleased with the week, I started back to running in 2015 and looking forward to continuing this.  I also need to create a more diverse plan of action, but for the next couple of weeks, I want to continue to run 3-4 days a week to get my body used to that again.  I also did some ab specific work with plans and am calling that a win!  I totally fell off the #30dayyogachallenge.  The thing is, I really enjoy it, the videos are short and sweet, but the first 9 days, I didn’t really feel challenged and as much as I like the relaxation aspect of it, I can use those 15-20 minutes now that I am back to work for prepping my meals and bag for the next day of work, so I just let it go.  I don’t feel too terrible about it, it was just easier to keep up with when I was home and on vacation. Maybe I will pick it up again sometime, but not right now.

Have a great Monday friends!

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Question of the day

How was your week?  What did you do for workouts? What are you looking forward to this week?

 

2015 Goals

Hi friends…how are we doing today?  Everyone surviving the first week back to work after the New Year?  I must admit, as much as being on vacation was great, I love the structure of my weeks when I am at work–yeah, Type A here…no surprise about that.  So I mentioned on Monday I’d have some goals for you today.  I am not big into New Year’s Resolutions, they just don’t really seem real to me and most don’t last past a few weeks, so I don’t bother with them.  Why set myself up for failure when I can focus that energy somewhere else.  While I don’t do resolutions, I am big on setting goals, so I have some goals for myself 2015.  Similar to my year in review, I am going to bucket them into 3 categories, Family/Home, Work and Fitness, so here we go!

Family/Home:

Hire a designer and get the inside of our house finished (new paint colors, window treatments, area rugs, furniture, etc- for every room-we need a total overhaul!)

Spend more quality time with Robyn (in 3 years, we have only been out that many times just the two of us! It needs to change.)

Work on being more present at home (sometimes I get in my own head, worry about all the things I have to do and zone out.)

Spend less time with electronics while with the boys (I am terrible at “just checking” FB, Instagram, etc.)

 

Work:

Successfully redesign and launch our product’s website

Design a brand new visually appealing and functional dual brand booth for our 2015 medical conferences

Meet with my mentor 2x a month to discuss long-term growth and goals

Continue to learn and take on new responsibilities in my new job

 

Fitness:

Drink at least 70 oz of water a day–I am lucky if I was( I am tracking this daily with an app)

Workout 5-6 days a week with at least 3 days of running

Work on more speed work vs. distance

Try and get my 5k time under 21 minutes (this will be really tough)

Incorporate strength, spinning and yoga into my weekly cross training

Do specific core work 3x a week

Try a new Beachbody program

 

new year

 

I hope you guys have a great day, it’s literally freezing here and it’s supposed to get colder (in the negatives tonight and tomorrow–eek!)  Be warm and happy!

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Question of the day

Do you make resolutions? Goals?  What are they?

Weekly Wrap Up

Yay, it’s my first post of 2015, welcome back and Happy New Year!  So, my 3 1/2 weeks of vacation is officially over and I’m back to work today.  I have to say, as much as I love vacation, I was ready to come back to work. I always feel this way after taking these last few weeks of the year off.  I feel rejuvenated and ready to get going! I even woke up about 30 minutes before my alarm went off (gasp!)  So now that we are headed full steam into 2015, here’s what my last week of vacation workouts looked like!

Week: 12/29-1/4

Monday: I woke up early to do the Asylum Game Day workout since it’s the hardest workout and I just didn’t want it hanging over my head until the afternoon when Ashton napped.  I finished it by 7 am, took a quick shower and read until Ashton woke up.  Once he did, we got moving, picked up my niece Ariella, stopped at Starbucks and we were off for a shopping excursion to the Natick Collection which is the best mall in the area, it seriously has EVERYTHING from Lululemon and Nordstrom to Neiman Marcus and Tory Burch.  We did some shopping and got home in enough time for Ashton to have lunch and nap and I got in day 2 of the #30dayyogachallenge that focused on opening the shoulders and chest. It’s only day 2 but I really like this challenge. The videos are 10-20 minutes long and before you know it, they are over and you feel much more relaxed and stretched than you did before. I really love yoga so getting a daily dose of it is great!

Tuesday: I woke up, ran around with Ashton and went and saw my niece’s basketball game.

ash and i basketball 1

We had such a blast and she played really well.  After we got home, we had lunch and I put Ashton down for his nap and I did the Asylum Vertical Plyo video and followed it by the #30dayyogachallenge

Wednesday: I was supposed to do Asylum Back to Core but I put in the wrong video and I ended up doing Strength and didn’t realize I did the wrong workout until after I was done and putting in the next disk for Thursday…oops!

Thursday: Today was a rest day for Asylum but I did my #30dayyogachallenge video and I am really loving it!

Friday: Robyn had to work so I decided to take Ashton to the Ecotarium in the morning.  This is kind of becoming a yearly tradition for us on New Year’s since we did it last year (but on New Year’s Eve instead.)

basketball 2

We met up with some of Ashton’s friends there and the boys had a blast. They were so busy jumping, building, looking at the animals and climbing all over everything, it was really fun to watch them all together!

ecotarium

I mean, how cute is this group picture of them?

boys at ecotarium

We ended up getting lunch with them afterwards at Panera and then when we got home, Ashton went down for a nap, I did Asylum Speed & Agility and then the #30dayyogachallenge and before I knew it, I woke Ashton up from his nap so we could get to my nieces basketball game.  I love being home during the week to actually see these games!  Ashton had a great time too! He gets really into it, clapping when the make a shot or saying, “She failed” when they shoot and miss!  I loved being able to take him with me because he LOVES his cousin so much!

basketball 3

Saturday: I was supposed to do Asylum Strength but since I did that on Wednesday, I did Back to Core since that was the workout I missed on Wednesday and followed it up with the #30dayyogachallenge

Sunday: I was supposed to do Asylum Game Day but my whole day’s schedule was thrown off. We were supposed to go to Sky Zone with our friends and their boys (the ones from the Ecotarium) but we got quite a bit of snow and freezing rain and we all decided it was safer to stay home. So while Robyn was out snow blowing, I got ready and was going to get my workout done, but then Ashton woke up and it didn’t happen.  I would have normally done it during his nap but I had plans to see my cousin’s who were in town for their daughter’s cheer leading competition. I hadn’t seen them in 13 years, so it was well worth missing a day of workouts to see them and catch up after so many years.  I did do the #30dayyogachallenge after I put Ashton to bed, then I started running around frantically trying to get my food prepped and my bags packed for my first day back to work! Eek!

All in all, another solid week of workouts!  Stay tuned for some of my goals in 2015!  Have a great Monday!

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Question of the day

How was your first week of the New Year?

 

What a year…2014 in Review

Wow, can you believe today is the last day in 2014? I mean, I feel like this year FLEW by, but I suppose I say that every year. I just feel like the older we get, the faster the years fly by–do you feel the same way?  So, it seems that it’s the “thing” to do for bloggers is to write a “year in review” post, so of course I am going to follow suit, but I am not just going to talk just about fitness accomplishments, I am going to do a full look at life in 2014.  I think writing this out helped me really think about what happened this past year.  I find sometimes that life moves so fast that I often forget what happened yesterday, never mind 11 months ago!  It’s nice to look back, think about what I am grateful for (so much,)  what went great, and not so great!  Life is all about these ups and downs, right? Having a place to document it and look back is really helpful for me and serves as a reminder when I forget (which is often!)

2014 EOY

These are in no particular order and not exhaustive of everything that happened this year, but its definitely some of the highs and lows. I bucketed them into 3 categories (Family/Home, Fitness & Work.)  They are just written however they come to mind, so it may be scrambled so bear with me.  Here we go:

Family/Home:

We celebrated Ashton’s 2nd birthday in February and even though we were both getting over the stomach flu, it ended up being a pretty great birthday! This little boy is the center of our world, which you all know if you have spent any time around this blog.  He has grown up so much since this picture was taken, he no longer has that baby face, he is growing into much more of a little boy each day!

ash 2nd birthday

Ashton had his first haircut, it was pretty traumatic for him but every haircut after that has been stellar, always with lots of smiles and ending with lollipops!

first haircut

We did a 2 year old photo shoot with Ashton and got our first decent family picture out of it!

Ashton 2 year pics

We did our first ever staycation for 2 weeks in August and it was awesome. We did a bunch of day trips and had a blast. Much to my surprise, you don’t have to go “away” to have a great vacation!

staycation

We said good bye to our sweet dog  Morgan after a quick battle with congestive heart failure. Putting him down was one of the toughest things I’ve had to do, but the poor guy is no longer suffering. I had 8 wonderful years with him and will hold those memories close.morgan

Ashton started soccer and I beamed like a proud mama, he loves it which makes me giddy! I have dreams of coaching his soccer team when he gets older!

ashton soccer

Ashton’s obsession with all things Dr. Seuss continued as he was the Cat in the Hat for Halloween! This is possibly a foreshadowing into the theme of his next birthday!

ash halloween

I finally had to say good bye to my trusty Toyota that spent nearly 200k miles with me. It was a sad parting but I bought a brand new car(a Subaru Crosstrek) that I am in love with! I don’t know if I will ever own another brand I love this car so much!

new car

We did a lot of home improvements this year including building a new deck and front stone walkway and we upgraded our electric systems (now to tackle the inside of the house!!) Anyone an interior designer out there?  I NEED your help!

new deck

I changed up my hairstyle and got bangs, not too drastic for many people, but I haven’t changed my hairstyle in well over 5 years, overall I really like the new look!

new hair

I read over 100 books this year (I keep track of them in the Goodreads App). I am a super fast reader and can easily finish most books in one day.  I am a binge reader and would much rather read than watch my beloved tv, so once I am hooked into a book, I am a lost cause, just let me read!

I won tickets to the Lady A in concert at the Boston Garden through a local country radio show and Erica and I had a blast at the show!

lady a

I saw my first Cirque show with Robyn, Erica and Matt.  While it wasn’t what I expected, it was pretty awesome to see how incredibly strong and talented these performers are and the stage theatrics were amazing!

mj show2

I had the stomach flu twice and strep throat 4 times.  Yeah, not so fun!  Given that I am someone who rarely gets sick, this was a tough year for sickness because it was all literally within a 4 month time period.

We took a weekend trip to Sesame St Place in PA and had an absolute blast with Ashton and our friends! Hands down it was one of the most fun things we did this year!

sesame st

We celebrated my mom’s one year in remission in April with my raising money for the Multiple Myeloma Foundation and running the Boston Marathon.  It was a big milestone for all of us, but we found out the week before Christmas that she was coming out of remission and now we have to fight like hell to get it back under control.

I had my 1 year anniversary of blogging in October and I am so grateful to all of you!  I love building friendships with all of you and look forward to continuing this is 2015!

Fitness:

For someone who doesn’t love to race, I raced more in 2014 than all my years of running combined! I did 7 races this year ranging from 5ks all the way to 26.2!

I started trail racing and did a series of 3 trail races where I had two 1st places in my age group and I came in 2nd in my age group in the 3rd one.  I placed 2nd in my age group in one of my 5ks and got new PRs in the 5k, Half marathon and Full marathon this year.

trail racing

I did 121 runs this year and 730 miles with my highest mileage months being 143 (January) and 141 (March.)  I logged every run in DailyMile (which was one of my goals for the year!)

I had my first DNF run during my Boston Marathon training cycle and ran through the Polar Vortex for 16 long weeks!

I crossed off my #1 fitness bucket list item this year when I ran the Boston Marathon in April.

0027t

I did my first racecation, a half marathon to benefit Cystic Fibrosis in Michigan with some of my work favorites! I even PR’d without trying (and running 6 miles before the race even started!)

photo 5

I have done yoga regularly for a full year and I have also adding spinning to my weekly cross training! I even completed the T25 Alpha and Beta Phases and felt awesome doing it!

I got to test out the AlterG anti-gravity treadmill which was super cool!

photo 4

And sadly, one of the lows in my fitness bucket is that I finished off the year by ending my stint teaching Group Power.

Work:

I feel like this year at work was insanely busy but there were only a few “big” things that happened–

I took my first work trip since having Ashton to Chicago for a conference, and then traveled to Philly, Madrid and Buffalo by the end of the year.  Not as much travel as I did pre-baby but more than enough now that I have a little one at home!

madrid

And the most significant thing that happened this year on the work front is that I left an old job and boss that I loved to explore a new job in the same company and feel like I have finally landed where I belong and it feels really good!

Whew!  Did you make it through all of that?  I am sure I missed a ton of things but all of these things came to mind when I sat down and started writing.  2014 was a year of change for me.  A new job, a new car, losing Morgan, learning to embrace the unknown, taking chances, knocking things off my bucket list, making time for the things and people who matter most for me and walking away from those people and things that don’t make me a better person.  It was also a year of setting boundaries and expectations, with myself, my work, friends and family.  I learned a lot about myself this year and surprised myself in many instances. I have grown in many ways this year, and really, that is all I can hope for with each passing year, that I become a better version of myself as I gain more experience in life.  I still have a lot to work on, but I know I will get there with time, support and patience!

So…now we are shooting into 2015 in just a few short hours…what’s on the horizon?  Your guess is as good as mine, but you better believe it will be filled with lots of sweat, laughter and love. Thank you all for a great year, I truly love you all and the friendships we have build over this past year and wish you a wonderful and safe New Year’s Eve and I look forward to hearing what 2015 has in store for you!

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Question of the day

How was your 2014? Highs? Lows? Goals for 2015?

 

Weekly Wrap Up

Hi my friends, it’s been a while (a week to be exact!) I’m sorry that I have continued to be MIA during my vacation and holidays.  I have been spending my vacation playing and soaking up every moment with Ashton and my family. I didn’t mention it last week since I only posted on Monday, but we found out at the end of last week that my Mom was coming out of remission and it kind of put a damper on things.  There is never a good time to get news like this, but a few days before the holidays is kind of the worst time for it to happen.  I spent a few days trying to wrap my head around this and getting focused on what we need to do moving forward.  My Mom’s doctors are super aggressive and she had a body scan immediately and we have an appointment next Monday at Dana Farber where we hope to have more answers and a plan of attack.  In a way, it’s been great to have this time off to spend with her.  I know she has really enjoyed all the extra time with me and Ashton and it helped to put the holidays back in perspective for me.  You can’t get missed time back with those you love, so you have to take advantage of the time you do have with them! So, between this news and running around after Ashton, when it comes time to sit down at the end of the day, I just haven’t had it in me to write up a post, but I promise it won’t be like this for much longer. I go back to work next Monday and things will hopefully get back to “normal.”  I am still being very consistent with my workouts, even with all the chaos of the holidays, which makes me really happy, so let’s take a look at what last week looked like!

Week: 12/21-12/28

Monday: I did the Asylum Back to Core video in the morning before Ashton woke up.  I didn’t sleep well and was up super early so I figured I would bang out my workout so I had his naptime to finish wrapping the few last minute things I had picked up for Christmas.

Tuesday: We spent the morning running errands and I was already beat come naptime but I knew I had to get the Asylum Strength video done and that is just what I did.  It’s amazing how tired I was before the video but once I get moving, I felt like a new (much sweatier) person.

Wednesday: We woke up late and were rushing to get out of the house in the morning.  We always spend Christmas eve with my family and I like to get there nice and early so I have the whole day to be with them, help them get ready for our big dinner, etc.  Thankfully it was a rest day for my Asylum program so when we got down to my Mom’s, we went out for breakfast and were able to relax all day and just enjoy each other.

mom ash and i xmas

Our annual Christmas dinner was great and there were about 20 of us, with almost all of us doing this dinner for the past 30 or so years, pretty crazy! Ashton also surprised me with this beautiful to the moon and back necklace from him (courtesy of my Mom!)

moon and back necklace

After the dinner festivities were over, Robyn, Ashton, my Mom and I headed back to our house to get ready for the big day!

Thursday: Christmas morning started off slow in our house with Ashton and I sleeping in.  Once everyone was up, we tried to get Ashton excited to open his gifts, but he just wasn’t that interested.  What???  So we waited a bit, ate some breakfast and we started by opening our stockings.  Once again Ashton was slow to start but once he got into it, he ended up opening all his gifts, then mine, Robyn’s and my Mom’s. It was really cute as he asked if he could help us too!  The whole things took about an hour and then we had a TON of new toys to play with, which we did until lunch and nap time!  Once Ashton was down for his nap, Robyn was busy preparing for our big Christmas dinner (and our 12 guests), my mom took a nap with Ashton and I did the Asylum Speed & Agility video and then took a shower. Everyone started arriving at 3:30 p.m. and we hung out, watched Christmas movies and ate!

me and erica

After everyone left and we got cleaned up and Ashton went to bed, my Mom, Robyn and I watched The Interview, which you could rent for $6 via YouTube.  We really liked it, we love the humor in Seth Rogen’s movies and I was really excited we were able to watch it in the comfort of our own home instead of going to the theater to see it! I wish all new movies were released this way!

Friday: On Friday morning, we woke up, ate breakfast and Ashton and I brought my Mom back home.  Robyn was working so after we left my Mom, we ran some errands.  Once Ashton went down for his nap, I did the Asylum Vertical Plyo video and then got cleaned up.  We ended the night with grinders from our local pizza shop and Robyn and I watched a Netflix movie.

Saturday: We had Ashton’s sports program in the morning and it was Robyn’s turn to play with him so I just watched.  After sports we went to a bunch of stores scoring some HUGE post Christmas deals on Christmas decorations.  That was seriously a workout in and of itself.  After we got home and refueled, Ashton took a nap and I did the Asylum Strength video. I think this may be my favorite of all the videos, I just love the controlled burn!!

Sunday:  It was a rest day from Asylum but we took down all our Christmas decorations and tree which was quite a workout when you are trying to keep a toddler from breaking all your ornaments and decorations! :)  I also started up the #30dayyogachallenge from Instagram through DoYouYoga, so I did Day 1 which was a hip opening routine and called it a day!

So, as I said, it was a bust week with Christmas, but my workouts this week were great and I didn’t get derailed with the holidays, which I am really grateful for.  I am still following the Asylum workout schedule and can’t believe I just started the 3rd week. It’s actually going by pretty quickly and I am already planning “what’s next” in addition to the #30dayyogachallenge, so stay tuned!

Happy Monday my friends–I will see you all on Wednesday with a recap of 2014!

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Question of the day

How was your week? What was the best part of the holidays for you?  What were your favorite gifts (to give and receive?)

Weekly Wrap Up

Hi my friends, sorry I have been MIA the past few days, there is just so much to be done to get ready for the holidays and not enough hours to do it.  I hope I can be more consistent blogging after Christmas, but until then, it’s Monday and I have been consistent with my workouts (a HUGE win) so let’s look at the Weekly Wrap Up!

Week: 12/15-12/21

Monday: My Asylum schedule stated it was a rest day so that is what I did.  While I stayed really active throughout the day, I am finding I definitely need these rest days that are scheduled because man, I am BEAT with these workouts!

Tuesday: On tap was the Asylum Speed & Agility video.  I jumped out of bed and did it first thing in the morning so I had the whole day to run errands.  When I was finished, my headband was SOAKED in sweat, like when I rang it out, there was a lot of sweat coming out.  During the video, I am wondering why I am doing this but by the time I am finished, I LOVE it and feel strong!

Wednesday:  I did the Asylum strength video. I find that I really love this video because I love to use weights in my workouts (and it gives you a bit of a rest from so many plyometric moves!)  I have been using 12 lbs dumbbells and while normally, 12 lbs weights would feel too light in my regular workouts (I usually like to be in the 20lb range), I totally feel the cumulative burn with the amount of reps in this video.

Thursday: I spent the morning/early afternoon at my Mom’s with Ashton and my sister but once we got home and Ashton went down for this nap, I did the Asylum Back to Core and boy did my back feel it. There is this swimming move they have us do towards the end that is a total killer!  I ended up spending the evening on the heating pad because

Friday: On Friday, I did Asylum Vertical Plyo video as soon as I woke up.  As much as I like this workout, this video is one of the hardest for me because of all the jumping.  My calves take the brunt of the pain in this workout, but thankfully, I haven’t had any residual pain post workouts, which I hope continues.

Saturday: Today was a rest day but I had soccer with Ashton in the morning and then cleaned the house which I am counting as a workout because I definitely worked up a sweat.  Then, we decorated gingerbread men, and anyone with kids knows that doing any kind of arts & crafts is WORK (and tons of fun!)

decorating cookies

Sunday:  We woke up, ate a quick breakfast and headed into Boston to see the big Christmas tree in Faneuil Hall and walk around for a bit. This has become a yearly tradition since Ashton was born and it’s really nice, since Robyn and I met when we both worked in Faneuil Hall together, so going back there is like a little walk through memory lane at all the places we used to frequent when we first met and started dating.  Ashton also got his first taste of a cinnamon pretzel! He ate almost the whole thing…no wonder he didn’t want much lunch afterwards :)

me and ash faneuil hall

When we got home and Ashton took his nap, I put in the Asylum Game Day video.  This is the first time I have done this video as it doesn’t start until mid way through the program and I can see why, it would have scared the crap out of my if this was thrown my way in the first week.  This video is NO JOKE. I don’t know if I have ever been so winded in all my life, it was brutal.  It is also the longest video at 60 minutes (most are around the 40-45 mins range) and while 15 minutes may not seem like a lot, I was counting down the seconds!

All in all my workouts this week were great (and really tough.) I have been following the Asylum workout schedule to the T and it’s no surprise that I really enjoy having someone else tell me what I need to get done everyday. I really just like to wake up, look at the calendar and know what I need to get done. I never question it, I never make excuses, I just do it because it’s what my training plan says. I am one of those people who does SO MUCH better with a set plan like this than just winging my workouts. I am almost 1/2 way through this program and while it’s still REALLY tough, I enjoy it!  Let’s hope this loving relationship lasts! :)

Happy Monday friends–it’s going to be a crazy week with the holiday, so have fun and be safe!

 

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Question of the day

How was your week/weekend?  What did you do?