OC Half Marathon 2017 Recap

WHAT A RACE! I cannot believe I completed my 3rd OC Half Marathon, my 2nd as an ambassador. Crossing the finish line on Sunday. I was beyond thrilled to be crossing. The race started very rough but I really pushed myself to get a PR of 4 minutes. My training for the OC Half was not as much as wanted but of course incorporated plenty of speed work thanks to Orangetheory.

We parked at the start line as we have found over the years, it works the best for us (meaning I HATE waking up early). As we were getting our gear ready it started to not only pour, it started hailing. We were in shock because just days ago we had 90 degree weather as we sat by the pool. We tried to wait it out until we had 15 minutes to go and needed to get moving. The rain was a slow drizzle as we made our way to the start line. As we were waiting in lines at the porta potty, it started pouring. Not gonna lie, I may have stayed in the porta potty longer than needed just to avoid the rain. We got stuck in one of the last corrals and ended up starting about 15 minutes after the first wave.

The first few miles were crowded but I stayed a steady pace for the first few miles. At miles 2ish, you turn the street and hit the mansions alongside the beach. It is my favorite part of the race and the time when it started pouring again. I was trying to run around puddles until I got splashed by someone else so I decided to embrace the rain. My clothes were soaked, my shoes were heavy filled with water but around miles 4 I realized that despite the rain, my body felt good. At miles 6, I realized my pace was still very steady and no aches or pains had started yet. Around miles 5 is usually where my back or knee starts to hurt so I enjoyed the fact that I was not hurting just yet. By miles 7, the thought of a PR really started to pop into my head. Thankfully by this time, the rain has stopped as well. Between miles 8 and 10, I just kept telling myself a PR was in site. The mantra that kept me going through was “You are going to hurt after either way, you might as well hurt with a PR.” After Ragnar (maybe one day I will get to that recap), the hill at mile 11 seemed like nothing. It even seemed smaller than I remember. By mile 11, I was start to ache but being that close to the finish line, I put on my favorite songs and pushed myself to the finish line. I crossed the finish line 4 minutes faster than my PR and 14 minutes faster than last year.

At the finish line, I got my favorite – chocolate milk, along with the other snacks before taking a few pictures. I met up with the hubby and some Orangetheory friends. We did not stay too long after the race because we were wet and just wanted to get back to our car to change into dry clothes. I really felt this race was even more supported than last year. As usual, it ran flawlessly. From sign up to race pickup and actual racing, it just ran perfectly.

As I crossed the finish line, I was filled with such amazement at what my body continues to accomplish. This race reminded me why I run, sign up races and genuinely like running. It has made me excited to do more races in the next few months. For now, I am going to bask in my PR and enjoy our vacation to Puerto Vallarta this weekend!

Thank you to the OC Marathon for having me as an ambasssador for another year, to the race coordinators and the wonderful volunteers! 

Ragnar Checklist

This weekend will be my second Ragnar So Cal race and as the day gets closer, I am getting more excited! We have more than half of our team reuniting from our first Ragnar. I am excited for not only the fun weekend but also a weekend getaway once we finish and most importantly a chance to redeem myself from the last Ragnar. Our team met on Friday to go over the last minute logistics. While I was a coach last time for our team, it was extremely easy to just be a participant this year. There has not been as much work which has led me to being excited for the race instead of stressed out.

Training and Running Lately

Before our meeting on Friday night, I headed out for an easy run just to move a little on my rest day. I did two miles a little slower than my race pace and my pace felt very comfortable! It is amazing what training and Orangetheory have done for my fitness in the past 6 months. For the race I am the first runner so my legs are: 2.30 miles (easy), 4.00 miles (easy) and 7.90 miles (very hard). I am so pumped for the first two legs because a flat road will allow me to really test my race pace. The last leg is going to really challenge me as a runner but I am excited for the challenge! My pace has increased, my legs have felt great and my recovery time has been faster.

Ragnar Relay So Cal Recap Part 3

Ragnar Checklist

These are the things I learned from my last race that are vital to have over the long weekend with no showers, lots of running and various weather. Our team agreed this year it would be best to individually handle our own food and drink for the weekend which means chocolate milk all weekend for me! :) Besides food and drink, these are the things each runner must have on them for Ragnar:

  • 3 sets of running clothes (1 for each leg)
  • 3 large ziplock bags for each outfit (great for storing those smelly clothes after)
  • Running shoes
  • Compression socks for your recovery
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat
  • Change of clothes for in between legs
  • Jacket for night (especially at the beach)
  • Baby / Body wipes
  • Sunblock
  • Car phone charger (be sure to check what your car uses for chargers)
  • Toothbrush/paste
  • Personal toiletries- medicine, glasses, etc.
  • Extra toilet paper and towels
  • Deodorant (this is a must for obvious reasons)
  • Run gear: Earbuds, water bottle, watch tracker, etc.
  • Cash/ Credit Card/ DL
  • Pillow and/or blanket
  • First aid (bandaids, antibiotic cream, ice pack, etc.)

Good luck to all who are participating in Ragnar this weekend!!

Friday Favorites #32

Last week dragged on but this week flew by. Work has been swamped with issues and busy classes. Being busy at the studio is a good problem to have. I took my first day off in weeks on Wednesday and it was one of the most productive days I have ever had. Although it wasn’t a leisurely day, I accomplished so much and felt great after. It reminded me how much days off are needed. And here we are, back to another weekend. Tomorrow, I am spending the day with my family celebrating my nephew’s birthday. On Sunday, I am teaching my usual Orangetheory classes followed by errands and another birthday celebration for my dad. I will take a more low key weekend because from here on out our weekends are getting booked up very quickly. In usual Friday fashion, here are some of my favorites from the week:

Friday Favorites

Friday Favorites

Travel Podcasts Everyone Should Listen To

WTRMLN WTR

Thank goodness.. IT IS BACK!!! I have been craving WTRMLN WTR the last few weeks and finally spotted it back on shelves at the grocery store. I am obsessed.


Warm Weather  

Cali has been having some very warm weather which was the perfect reason to take the baby out on an adventure. We went up to Lytle Creek, about 20 mins north of us. We enjoyed the warm weather and hiking around the creek. The water was freezing but Emma got in and enjoyed getting outdoors.


Countdown to Race Season

I am getting so excited for the next few races we have coming up! One month until Ragnar So Cal and two months until the OC Half. I shared a coupon code on Instagram this week if you missed signing up before the price increase.


Puerto Vallarta 

The husband booked our next vacation this week. Getting the email from my husband made my day! I am so excited for summer and spending a long weekend relaxing on the beach, drinking a margarita and paddleboarding.


Tell me: What are your plans for the weekend? What are your favorites from the week?

 

Thinking Out Loud Thursday: Celebrating Changes

Since we have gotten back from Spain (one day I will actually recap that amazing trip) I have been focused when it comes to my workouts. I have been not only been working out at least 5x a week, I include one day of double workouts and have been working on strength training! As I’ve been cleaning up my eating significantly as well by cutting back on desserts, giving up diet soda and reducing snacking, my weight has only gone down by 6 lbs. That 6 lbs. came off in the first 3 weeks while I’ve stayed the same weight for quite some time now. In the past, I usually fall off the wagon and give up a few weeks into a new routine, especially when I was not seeing changes on the scale. This time around though I’ve noticed a huge difference in myself in how I’m viewing these changes.

Celebrating Changes Besides the Scale

 

Celebrating The Changes Besides The Scale

Working out and eating healthy is not just about the number on the scale. It is more about creating a lifestyle that is healthy, realistic and enjoyable. The scale is just one indicator of weight loss. The difference this time around for me is my mindset. The fact that while my weight isn’t dropping that doesn’t mean my body isn’t changing. I’ve started to celebrate other gains in my lifestyle change and it has made all the difference. Some of the changes I have seen beyond the scale:

1) Increased weight during strength training – This past week at Orangetheory, I used 30 lbs. dumbbells! When I started at Orangetheory I was doing 15 lbs. The increase in weight for that one workout alone should have resulted in celebration but it’s not the only gain I’ve seen. As a whole I was averaging 10-12 lbs. when I started Orangetheory but my average is 20-25 lbs. which shows just how strong my body is getting. It makes me excited to see what my body is capable of!

2) Better sleep – This one is huge for me. I have struggled with insomnia for a very long time. Over the past year I have celebrated any night I would get 5 hours of sleep. Since the New Year, I am averaging closer to 7 hours. Not only am I getting the quantity of hours, the quality of my sleep has improved significantly. I fall asleep faster, I stay asleep throughout the night and wake up much easier every morning. The feeling of taking a hot shower after an intense workout and hitting the sheets is the best!

3) Increased energy – Energy goes hand in hand with getting more sleep but also helps to continue productivity throughout the day. I am rarely hitting the afternoon slump and find myself more alert throughout the day. I have even added a double workout day on a regular basis because I have the energy to complete more intense workouts.

4) Increased happiness – Granted not every day is a perfect day but as a whole, I am much happier. I have said it before, I will say it again, Elle Woods had it right. Endorphins really do make you happy! Naturally throughout the day I find myself more patient and happier. Even if I am feeling stressed out, anxious or upset, I work my feelings out instead of resorting to unhealthy ways of coping (i.e. eating junk food). Remember you will never regret a workout.

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Tell me: What changes besides pounds lost have you seen from working out? 

Linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for Thinking Out Loud Thursday!

Podcasts I’ve Have Been Loving Lately..

When I started my previous office job, I went through a phase where I got sick of music. I would listen to the same songs over and over. I ended up coming across some of  my favorite podcasts during that time and have been hooked ever since. I have listened to many podcasts, usually giving a podcast at least a couple of episodes before deciding if I would continue with it. There have been some podcasts I have listened to since the beginning of their start, others stumbled across and become obsessed. All of my current favorite podcasts can be found on Itunes!

1) The Skinny Confidential : Ask Him & Her 

I have mentioned this podcast multiple times on the podcast and social media. Lauren and Michael are HI – LARIOUS! Every one of their podcasts makes me laugh but also leaves me with smart business advice. They offer business advice, perspectives on real life situations, travel planning and amazing guests.

Favorite episode: Episode 12 “Live from Florence, Italy” 

2) Zero to Travel 

Jason hosts an amazing travel podcast that combines two of my favorites together (see below). I love that his travels include less of the tourist destinations as well as relatable content such as how to find travel deals, cycling around the world and how to quit your job and travel (oh how I wish I could).

Favorite episode: “How to Quit Your Job and Travel The World: Zero to Travel” 

3) Extra Pack of Peanuts Travel

This podcast is the best podcast for wanderlusters! It is so hard to say my favorite episode because every single one is educational, insightful and interesting. Travis, along with his wife and fellow podcaster Jason  from Zero to Travel discuss their current travels, top lists and travel tips. For any upcoming trip, this is the podcast to listen to!

Favorite episode: Either “Top 32 Cities in the US” or “Top 10 Travel Wishlist” 

4) Blissful Bites

Nicole’s podcast is a must listen for any blogger or entrepreneur! There are inspiring and successful business people who share amazing insight to the business world. Every time I listen to her podcasts, I feel ready to tackle the world!

Favorite episode: Episode 120 “FF You NEED to stop doing this!” 

5) The Lively Show 

Jess offers such an uplifting podcast that I binged listened to once I heard my first episode. What I love most about her podcast is that I feel like I am just listening to a friend chat about life, relationships and work life.

Favorite episode: TLS #149 “Your Questions Answered – Travel Tips, Highs & Lows”

 

Tell me: What is your favorite podcasts?

 

Friday Favorites #31

It has been a hot minute since I have done a Friday Favorites post. I am looking forward to the weekend that will be fitness focused. On Saturday, I am teaching my usual cycle class before driving up north for my niece’s birthday. On Sunday, I am not teaching my usual Orangetheory classes because I have TRX Training! I have been wanting to get my certification for quite some time. The certification is a full 8 hour day but I love learning so I am looking forward to it. Before the weekend starts, I am sharing some of my favorites from this week! Play along and share your favorites in the comments.

Jamba Juice Island Pitaya Bowls – I am obsessed – I have had 3 this week! The fresh fruit (3 of my favs) on the top is perfection. Perfect breakfast and start to my day!


“Eat, Sleep, OTF” Shirt – This shirt has my life summed up perfectly. I have been all about OTF lately. Since coming back from my trip, I have been playing catch up. Spending a little more time than usual just means I have done an Orangetheory workout almost everyday.


Craft Time – As we are still in the processing our decorating our home, I finally gathered all of the maps I have been collecting. I purchased new frames this week and went to town cutting the maps to fit the frame. I love having all of the places I have visited framed to see everyday. My plan is to put them as a gallery wall at the top of our stairs so I can see them every single day!


Pump Day – YES, just yes!


Home of Spoiled Dog – My favorite housewarming gift! Lets be honest, it’s Emma’s house, we just live there.


Lululemon Fringe Fighter Headbands – I posted about these bad boys a weeks ago on Instagram. I cannot get enough. They are reversible, comfortable and super cute. My headband collection just continues to grow!


Tell me: What were your favorites from the week? What is your favorite fruit? 

 

Cycle Workout & Playlist

Although it seems my life has been all Orangetheory lately, I have actually still been teaching cycle twice a week. Cycle was my first love and will always be one of my favorite group exercise formats to teach. After teaching for over 3 years, sometimes it seems like I have heard some of the same “workout” songs a million times (I am talking to you Sandstorm). The other day I made a point of picking artists that have a song I normally use in playlists. This time I looked for songs that aren’t as common or overplayed. I ended up not only finding new songs that have high energy and a strong beat but being reminded of songs that I had not heard in a while. Today I am sharing my latest cycle workout and playlist.

Cycle Workout & Playlist
Cycle Workout & Playlist

Warm- up / Hey Brother – Avicii 
Standing Climb / Hair – Little Mix
Jumps (up/down) / Heart Attack – Demi Lovato
Seated Climb / Kids – One Republic
Standing Sprints on the Chorus / I Cry – Flo Rida
Jumps (up/across the saddle) / A-YO – Lady Gaga
Across the Saddle Climb / Into You – Ariana Grande
Jumps (up/across the saddle/ down) / Bring It Back – Shy Carter
Seated Climb / Tightrope – Walk The Moon
Seated Sprints on the Chorus / Find You – Zedd
Jumps (up/down) – HandClap – Fitz and the Tantrums
Standing Sprints on the Chorus / Applause – Lady Gaga
Seated Climb –> Standing Climb / In My Head – Jason Derulo
Jumps (20 secs up/ 20 secs down) / Somebody Loves You – Betty Who
Cooldown on the Bike / Try Me – Jennifer Lopez & Jason Derulo
Cooldown off the Bike/ I Love You Always Forever – Betty Who

Tell me: What was your first love when you started working out? 

Reflecting on 2016 after our last trip

I am having major post travel blues. We just returned from 10 days in Spain and it was glorious. As seen on Instagram, we were in both Madrid and Barcelona. I am hoping to get my recaps up as soon as possible before every detail slips my mind but for now I am going to revel in my trip as much as possible. Before the trip I did some major reminiscing of our past trips which made me think a lot about the past year.

Reflecting on 2016

I have to admit, when I re-read my goals for 2016 I laughed out loud. Besides traveling, I did not complete much of what I set out to. However, 2016 most certainly did not turn out as I expected when I made those goals. At the end of the day, that is the best part about life. What has come from the unexpected and unplanned goals was some memorable life moments. Also although we did not get as many trips as last year, we still had an epic honeymoon in New York, Greece and Boston. We also were able to visit Napa Valley in the summer.  Just because I did not succeed in the fitness goals I set for the year, does not mean I did not accomplish anything throughout the year.

  1. Got my dream job in the fitness industry 
  2. Became an Orangetheory coach
  3. Completed 130 burpees for charity 
  4. Finished Hell Week at Orangetheory 
  5. Ran 2 half marathons (OC Half and Run Revel)

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So what about 2017? To be honest, I am not sure I want to put goals down on paper and have next year be the same thing. However, having New Year goals is beneficial in trying to get my year to look like how I want. But I want to be open to change in case this year turns out like the last. Obviously I am traveling as we just returned from Spain. This is the first time though we have NO idea where we will head for the rest of the year. I have some fitness goals I know I will accomplish like the OC Half Marathon and continuing to coach. There are some things like another triathlon that has been put on the back burner too long.

Tell me: Did you complete your 2016 New Year’s Resolutions?

2016: The Year of Growth

It only took a week into 2016 to recap. At the rate I have been going, I would call this a success. My “Year of Traveling in Love” led into a year that would be one of my own most challenging. 2016 was in short, a very trying year. I have learned a lot about myself and how much I can handle. I have also learned about what I want in life which inevitably lead to my dream job. My year of many struggles can easily be summed up into –  “The Year of Growth.” Despite some hardships, this year was also filled with many wonderful memories and exciting opportunities.

2016

Highlights of 2016:

Landing my dream job
Becoming an Orangetheory Coach
Wine Tasting in Temecula
Two USC Games
My only brother got married
Purchasing our first home

Two races completed: OC Half and Run Revel

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Two vacations taken: Our Honeymoon and Napa Valley

One country visited: Greece

Delos Greece

Three states visited: Massachusetts, New York and Connecticut

Brooklyn New York Botanical Gardens

 

Three types of group fitness taught: Cycle, Bootcamp and Orangetheory

The worst moment of 2016: Being stuck in a job where I was unhappy 

The best moment of 2016: Our travel themed wedding

Travel Themed Wedding

Here’s to hoping 2017 is another year filled with adventure, travel and growth!

Workout Wednesday: 12 Days of Christmas

Happy Workout Wednesday! I can’t believe we only have 4 days until Christmas. Luckily, I am pretty much done with shopping and starting Friday I get to enjoy some time with family. One of the hardest things during the holidays is to continue eating healthy and getting workouts in. During the holidays, however is the time you should be working out to control your stress level. Today, for Workout Wednesday, I am sharing a workout that you can do in your home in between wrapping those presents and prepping for the season. You do not need anything more than a set of dumbbells to complete this holiday themed workout.

Equipment Needed: Dumbbells
Directions: Complete 2-3 rounds of the exercises, top to bottom

12 Days of Christmas

12 bicep curls
11 shoulder presses
10 tricep dips
9 dumbbell lunges
8 dumbbell squats
7 bent rows
6 reverse crunches
5 side dips (each side)
4 straight leg crunches
3 pushups
2 mountain climbers
1 burpee

Added challenge: Complete this challenge as a add-on workout. Starting at 1 burpee, complete 1 burpee. Then complete 1 burpee + 2 mountain climbers. Move on to 1 burpee + 2 mountain climbers + 3 pushups until you have worked through the workout. 

Tell me: Have you completed all your Christmas shopping?