Saturday, December 29, 2012

2012 Resolutions–How did I do?

Almost a year ago, I did what a lot of people do… I vowed to make 2012 a good one and made some New Years Resolutions!  I looked at these a few times throughout the year to stay on track.  Overall, I did pretty well, there were some I could’ve definitely done better at (cough.breaking up with the snooze button.cough), but there’s always next year!



  • Eat less meat
    • At the time my goal was to learn to make more vegetarian entrees and change up some meaty meals using some portabellos or homemade veggie patties.  My views on meat have sort of changed since I made this goal.  I am now eating plenty of meat without regret, but I buy organic, local, and grass-fed when I can.  I need to make this more of a priority in the new year.  Let’s call this one N/A.
  • Eat more whole foods, less processed junk
    • B+, I have definitely been working on this over the whole year, but for the past few months I’ve really noticed the difference from cutting down on bread, pasta, bagels, etc.
  • Eat more veggies and fruit
    • A-, I think I’ve been pretty successful in keeping our fridge stocked and trying out new varieties like spaghetti squash and recently arugula!
  • Eat less cheese
    • Ummmm, still working on this one – C.


  • Stop snoozing my alarm, get up the first time it goes off
    • D, I can’t say this has been a success.  I’ve done better at getting up sooner, but I’m still a fan of the snooze button.
  • Be more productive at work
    • B-, this could still use more work but I’ve definitely been pushing myself.
  • Take another grad class
    • F, I failed at this one!  Between running, cheerleading, and all those weddings, I didn’t really have the urge to squeeze in a class.  I did apply to sit for my professional engineering exam in the spring, so that was a positive.
  • Create a budget and save money
    • B-, I didn’t create a budget, but I did set up an automatic transfer to move some money to my savings.  I’ve also been saving some money in an additional account and I’ve been paying extra to my school loans.  I feel like I could still use more structure, but overall not too shabby!
  • Give the blog a more permanent makeover
    • A, I did this a while ago, but now I’m thinking I want to do another blog makeover in the new year!

Did you make any resolutions in 2012?  How did you do?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Gym Dilemma

Before I joined the Y, I was looking at a lot of gym options.  We used to belong to a small 24 hour good enough for the average joe gym and I was considering rejoining based on the fairly cheap cost of $40/month, guests always allowed.  I was also doing a lot of research on CrossFit.  I’ve been reading a couple of different Paleo blogs and CrossFit seems to be a favorite in that community.  What I’ve read online is that people compare it to an adult team sport, where you have a coach and everyone cheers you on and calls you if you miss “practice.”  It’s a quick but super intense workout and people get obsessed with it.  It’s right up my alley.

Oh and it only costs $119/month for 2 workouts a week!  Eek.  I don’t know about you, but that’s a bit much for me.  My beloved Planet Fitness, only a 1-2 minute ride from my parents’ house, cost me 10 whopping dollars per month!  It spoiled me.  We ended up settling on the YMCA at $89/month for Dave and I with access to an awesome weight room, multiple pools, free classes, and more.  And I love it.  I’ve been going a few times a week, which makes me feel like I’m getting a jump on making it a habit before the new year.  I’ve run some laps and sprints around the indoor track, taken advantage of the variety of cardio machines, and started to navigate the weight room.

And then the LivingSocial deal I’ve been hoping would come along pops up: a deal for CrossFit Valley Forge offering the Four-Class On-Ramp Course (required for you to learn all the fundamental movements) for $49 (a $160 value), only a few weeks late!  I love LivingSocial and Groupon and I get a ton of awesome deals, this would’ve been a no brainer before I signed up for the Y, but I debated for a few days.  I feel like I have so much already going on: an upcoming yoga groupon, the membership at the Y, a cheer practice once a week starting in February, and volleyball.  Oh my that’s a lot typing it all out…

But then I went for it!  I just couldn’t pass this up!  And I bought Dave one too, he’s not super excited about it (yet?) but he agreed to go along.  What a good boyfriend.  I figure that we’ll take the classes and we’ll either say “wow this is awesome, I need to be a part of this!” or “that’s not for me, but now I can do all the moves they taught me at the Y.”  I think it’s a win win.

I don’t know, I’ve been thinking about really committing to the Paleo lifestyle, but I’ve been sort of lurking online just taking it all in.  We’ve definitely been eating closer and closer to the guidelines of it (meats, veggies, oils, fruits, and nuts, no grains, legumes, dairy, sugar, and all processed foods), but the holidays were indulgent and now I feel bloated and I can feel the difference in my energy.  Giving CrossFit a try along with the motivation of the new year may be the push I need to take the next step in my food journey!  But that’s a whole other post.

Tomorrow is Friday, yay!

Do you think I’m crazy for buying the deal?  Do you like to try out different gyms and classes?

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Reflections

The past few days have been a whirlwind of celebrations filled with family, traditions, and endless feasting.  To say I am blessed would be an understatement.  I received many thoughtful gifts, I savored more than my share of multiple delicious holiday dishes, and I got to spend some quality time with my loved ones.  Waking up to a thin blanket of snow this morning was the icing on the cake!

I’m really enjoying blending my family traditions with Dave’s, and making some of our own along the way.  Cutting down our own tree with Dave’s parents, my mom’s homemade pierogies, feeling like a big girl sending out my own Christmas cards, running outside in the cold with no coat on when Santa comes down the street on a fire truck at my parents’ house, singing Silent Night in church only by candle light (well, battery operated candle light since someone lit their hair on fire a few years ago), and oh my goodness, the cookies!!!  I only dream of baking cookies as delicious as our moms’, they are both so amazing in the kitchen.  Puddin’ was sufficiently spoiled and I’d say we were too.  I may or may not have gained 7 lbs over the long weekend.

There’s so much preparation and anticipation leading up to the holiday and I can’t believe it has come and gone.  Now I’m feeling slightly run down from all the running and the reality of waking up for work tomorrow is setting in.  The holidays are a lovely time of the year, but I am looking forward the less busy feel of January.  I look forward to clean eats, a busy gym buzzing with New Years motivation, catching up with friends that I couldn’t connect with over the holidays, and maybe even some weekends with no plans other than cuddling on the couch while something simmers in the crockpot.

Oh wait, we still have another long weekend filled with celebrations!  On that note, my bed is calling me.  Merry Christmas to you and yours.  I hope Santa was good to you and you find yourself in good health.

What’s your favorite Christmas tradition?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Gym Time!

I am officially a member of my local YMCA!


It's no secret I've been losing my running mojo for a while now and after the 10K, I decided I was pretty much over it.  Don't get me wrong, training for my half marathon was great.  I really enjoyed running at the time and I'm so proud of myself.  But now I'm ready for the next chapter!

I've totally been craving the gym.  Although I can do plenty of workouts at home in my living room, the gym setting really motivates me.  If I'm at home, I can do 5 minutes and then get distracted and quit.  When I'm at the gym, I feel compelled to get something done.  If I made it there, I might as well make the most out of my time.  I also enjoy the people watching aspect (need to get better at not getting caught though, commence awkward eye contact!) and watching other people get their sweat on makes me want to do more.

Plus there's such a variety offered to me in a gym setting.  The YMCA offers a weight room, two indoor tracks, two indoor pools, and a variety of classes.  I need to decide which class(es) I want to sign up for for the new year!  They offer a ton, some of which are free and some of which aren't.  We'll see but I do have my eye on a kickboxing class.

Last night I got to do somethings I haven't done in a while including bench press and some
assisted pull ups. One day I will do multiple assisted pull ups, one day! Today I'm sore and it
feels great!

Do you enjoy going to the gym?

Sunday, December 9, 2012

November Adventures

A Turduckaween party, a Mennonite farm, and you guessed it – another wedding!  November was full of adventures and I can’t believe it’s already December and 2013 is just around the corner.  This year has really flown by!
















Rainy and blah here, think I’ll cozy up on the couch with a blanket and some football.  Happy Sunday.

Did December sneak up on you?  Are you ready for the holidays?!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Victory for Voices 10K Race Recap

When my alarm went off this morning I was not very excited about getting up for the race.  Despite spending about a third of the day Saturday napping, I didn’t want to get out of bed and the gloomy foggy weather wasn’t helping.  I was kind of stressed out, I wasn’t sure exactly where we were supposed to be, what I was eating for breakfast, or how I was going to feel through the race.  My nerves were eased a bit when we got to the race with plenty of time to pick up our shirts, stand in the porta potty line, and meet up with Allison and her cheerleaders Tracy and Jess!

Me & Allison

I know, our hair looks amazing.  It was pretty chilly while we were standing there and the thick fog was keeping a lot of moisture in the air.  We were ready to get the race started!

On our way

And we were off!  The race was a 3.1 mile loop through the park, the 10K was two loops of the course, so you could decide midrace.  So we started off with everyone… up a huge hill!  I was pretty full of hatred running up the hill at the start, but knew it would be worse on the second lap.  The first part of the course was on roads through the park, after we defeated the long hill at the start, we faced another shorter uphill and soon we were half way through the loop.

The second half of the course was on a paved trail through the woods.  The trail had a good amount of windy turns, but it was mostly downhill or flat.  Dave and I had planned to take our time through the race since we wanted to last through the 6.2 miles, but Allison was running her first 5K and we followed her pace through the first lap.  Even though she claimed she was “so slow” she was definitely pushing me!  I floated the idea of skipping the second lap to Dave, but he made me commit to finishing the whole 10K.  Yay for positive peer pressure.

Almost half way

Soon we were out of the woods and approaching the 5K finish line, we cheered Allison on as she finished and prepared to face the hill again.  I was full of hatred as we headed up the hill.  I had a lot of pain in my Achilles and we did a good bit of walking up the incline.  We did some more running and then took another short walk break up the smaller incline.  We took our last walking break through the water station around 4.5 miles.  The course was way less crowded during this lap, which made it kind of less exciting but we ended up running with a woman who was cheering on everyone around her and making us laugh.

Soon enough we spotted Allison, Tracy, and Jess and we could hear Gagnam Style pumping through the speakers at the finish line.  We sprinted to the finish and we were done!

Almost done

Ugly sprinting

We both felt extremely proud of our finishing time of 1:01:28!  Of course I forgot to charge my Garmin, so I don’t have the regular splits, but running faster than a 10 minute mile pace was amazing considering our (lack of) preparation!  It was Allison’s first 5K and she won 3rd place in her age group!  We were going to leave before they did the 10K awards, but Allison and Tracy convinced us to hang around because you never know… and Dave won 3rd in his age division too!  It was also the farthest he’s ever run, yay for his PDR!  They rock!!!  Also, kudos to Tracy, our awesome photographer!

Allison & Dave

And now I’m retiring from running… jk!  Kinda.  Dave and I are planning on joining a gym ASAP, so I’m looking forward to getting back to lifting in a gym setting.  I’m sure I’ll keep running, especially when the weather gets nice again, but for now I’m not really interested in running any winter races or training for any long distances.  Maybe I will have another love affair with running, but for now give me a weight room!

Do you go through fitness phases?

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