I do a lot of lounging in the summer

Hellllo friends! Hope you have been enjoying the great weather this week (if you are having great weather where you are ;-) )

Sunday

So we got the couch in my apartment! I guess all that lifting and body pump pays off!

I then went out to a BBQ restaurant with the fam and I of course snapped a picture of everything #bloggerproblems

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To start a salad and a potato wrapped in bacon with a yummy sauce. Then a big ol’ pile of pulled BBQ turkey and Bourbon root vegetables.

I then informed my family it was National Ice Cream Day so we obvi had to celebrate:

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Chocolate fro-yo and reese’s peanut butter cups. This isn’t like fro-yo, fro-yo but it was perfect for National Ice Cream Day. I seriously cannot have ice cream without reese’s.

Monday

Shoulders, arms and core plus spin!

 

I then headed to TJs and did meal prep on Monday:

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This week’s meal: pulled chicken with bbq sauce (I think the BBQ restaurant gave me the inspiration), lentils, carrots, celery, onions and peppers all sauteed together.

I then used my left over pulled turkey from the BBQ place on my salad:

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I then got a nice day in at the pool!

Later on I finally had the Greek Salad (no pic) that I have been craving with my friend (hiiiii- I know she reads this ;-) ). It totally hit the spot and was so fun to catch up with my BFF!

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Got in an outfit pic ;-)

Tuesday

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Started the day with a 6 mile run with my very speedy friend. We had to make a pit stop half way through hence the 11:02 pace, but really it was in the 10s! You should see this girl run up a hill- I had to catch up to her! We had so much fun though and it is always better to run with someone than to run alone! Thank goodness I have discovered this!

Later on I lounged by the pier and enjoyed this pretty salad:

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The yellow is mango pieces!

I then headed to an eye doctor appointment that was well over due.

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I kept it classy by wearing sneakers with my regular outfit. I feel like ever since I have become a runner my feet are more sensitive to flip-flops and not form fitting shoes.

I now have a higher prescription and I’m going to head to Warby Parker in the city to get some affordable glasses. I hope I like them!

Have you ever had your eyes dilated? I have not and it wasn’t fun afterwards. My eyes were super sensitive to light for a couple hours and I couldn’t see things up close (like my iPhone). They gave me these super cool looking shades to wear while driving:

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Haha I looked so cool.

After that I had some time to kill before tutoring so I stopped in GNC to get these:

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Smart Detour Bars- I have seen them all over instagram so decided to give them a shot, they have 10g of protein and seem like a good substitute for my Kashi bars that have 7g of protein. I haven’t had one yet but I will let you know how they are!

Today

I always begin my day with either a real breakfast or if I’m going for a run/workout, I have a Quest Bar and an apple. (Yes, it is an expensive habit but YOLO).  Today I tried a new to me flavor and I liked it.

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It was the apple pie which I normally don’t like apple pie but this was pretty good. It had mini apple chunks in it and a cinnamon taste to it. I would order this again.

Then I headed into the city for a Body Pump class. I was just not in the mood to do a “lift work out” and wanted to have some fun so I decided why not take a Body Pump instead! I also did some core work and decided to try my hand at this, a leg raise station:

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For some reason I thought I wouldn’t be able to do this but I totally did! I have been afraid to try my hand at it but I’m glad I did. I did 3 sets of 15 leg raises!

Enjoyed some overnight oats by a park by this gym (it was all the way on the Upper West Side)

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I then lounged again by the pier and read and enjoyed the beautiful day. I really do a ton of lounging in the summer but I am trying to tell myself that it is good for my body and my soul. ;-)

Even though I laid in the sun all day (did a lot of reading) I am so exhausted for some reason. I think I will be having an early bed time tonight.

How did you celebrate National Ice Cream Day?

Have you ever had your eyes dilated? 

Have you ever bought glasses from Warby Parker? 

 

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Run of the Champions 5k PR!

Before I get to my exciting I title I of course have to recap all of the events leading up to it! :-)

Friday:

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Yummy Strawberry/Banana/Oat/PB/Greek Yogurt Smoothie to start the day.

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Quest Bar/Apple at the pier before heading into the city for a fun Body Pump! I am obsessed with that class.

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Big salad after Body Pump: Arugula, Carrots, Tomatoes, Strawberries, Avocado, Quinoa, Beets and Grilled Chicken with a Sweet Potato on the side.

Friday night fun:

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Andrea runs on Dunkin especially before babysitting ;-)

Saturday:

Planned rest day. I hadn’t had a rest day for awhile so due to some fun things planned I thought it would be a good day for rest!

My friends and I went to Central Park for a picnic. We bought food at Whole Foods (hello $16 salad- there was a piece of grilled pineapple in there aka heavy) and then lounged in the park for awhile. It was fun to catch up and the weather was perfect picnic weather.

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After that I walked to the NYRR office to pick up my bib and shirt:

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Came home and was cravinggggg apples with nut butter and raisins? Weirdest craving ever.

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Almond Butter and Cinnamon Raisin PB.

Dessert-you must try this:

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Choc. PB Arctic Zero, I had like one serving left, mixed with my homemade banana ice cream and strawberries. I was craving fro-yo but the idea of leaving my apartment was not happening so this was def the next best thing!

Sunday

This morning I woke up nice and late (6:15 am) haha that is very late for me for a race. I was so excited that the race was like a 15 minute car ride (if that) away from me, at Met Life Stadium!

My parents met up with me before the race. Although it was a 5k, not too long for spectators, I asked them to come just because it seemed like it would be a really cool experience to see me run on the field. They also were having a Health & Fitness Expo after so I knew it would be a fun and cool time!

Some pics before the race:

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After we walked around a bit I left them by the finish line and headed to my corral. Did you see I moved up to the Orange corral because of the Queens 10k! So exciting!

Since I knew it was 3 miles I decided to just start running fast. Def at my “interval” or “rep” pace. I knew it because I was breathing hard and not feeling super happy. My coach explained when we are using up the VO2 you start to feel a little agitated, everyone around you is annoying, which I kind of felt. I was trying to be positive but I was breathing harddddd. After mile 1 I saw I did an 8:29 mile. HOLLA, so I kept on trucking. I def didn’t have negative splits, but my avg. pace was 8:59, all sub 9 splits and I finished in 27:53! Towards the finish line I almost thought I was going to puke, thank goodness I didn’t! I have to be honest- not a fan of the 5k. 10k, 15k, half, sign me up- 5k: way. too. fast.

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Blurry pic toward the finish line (this was cool running on the field).

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Post-race pic!

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Loved that my mom and dad came!! :-)

After the race we walked around the expo for a bit. My mom and I both won 2 free weeks the Hackensack UMC Health & Fitness Gym. I see this on my way up to Bergen County and drool over the gym every time I drive by. They have 3 pools, including a salt water pool. A zillion classes (so many Les Mills classes- not just bodypump ). I am planning to start my two weeks VERY soon! I know they will want me to join after which I won’t be able to because it’s just not convenient for me, however it will be like a fun gym vacation for two weeks!

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After the expo we grabbed breakfast at an okay diner, nothing to write home about.

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Spinach & Feta Omelette and Chocolate Milk ;-)

When I got home I still had so much energy so I decided to go for a little recovery run just to enjoy the fresh air at an easy pace, 3.77 miles at 11:29 pace!

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I then decided to finally try my Vega Protein Powder:

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Powder, Water, Strawberries, & Mango. It was OK, would never spend the money on a tub of this stuff. Filled me up for sure, kinda gave me a tummy ache,  but still tasted a little chalky. I think if it was a little colder it would have been better but whatevs, now I see what they hype is isn’t all about.

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I am now relaxing on my balcony waiting for my sister and bf to get here with our new couch. Wish us luck on carrying it up to my apartment!

Hope you all had an awesome weekend!

 

 

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The Rain is Finally Gone!

Happy Friday! It’s so funny when I say things like that in the summer because it never really matters if it’s hump day, Friday, Monday, I’m just enjoying lifeeeee.

So when we last spoke I was supposed to have a 5k Tuesday Night. So after the gym in the morning I ran some errands buying these:

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We are working on our apartment because my old roommate moved out and she had a lot of our furniture. I found these Adirondack chairs at Lowes for $17! Now I can enjoy my balcony!!

Other than that I tried to relax a little and hydrate for the 5k.

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Reading on the balc.

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Enjoyed a big and yummy salad.

I even made banana ice cream to kill time! My mom had given me some overripe bananas. So I sliced them the day before and kept them in a container in the freezer the night before. The next day I put the slices in the blender added some milk and water and blended it all up!

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It was SO creamy and delicious freshly made. I have been storing it in the freezer and eating each night “straight out of the carton.”

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Finally at around 5:30 I started to get ready for the 5k:

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I was alllll ready to go.

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Pre-race selfie.

And the weather had been iffy alllll day. It was sooooo humid and there had been a few monsoons/thunderstorms throughout the day. Around 6, the sun started to come out so my friend and I headed to the pier where the race was. I even used a porta-potti, did some dynamic stretching and was all ready to race! Then it started pouring and lightning and thundering so they cancelled the race. I was so bummed that they didn’t even have a rain date.

So my friend and I ran to a restaurant in the pouring rain for “post-race food.”

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Veggie Burger and Fries- delicious!

Wednesday morning I woke up veryyy early (5am) to get to a 6:15am Spin Class! The bikes at the uptown gym are live strong bikes and they have a tracker with your cadence, etc. This was my first time taking Spin there and I was excited to try a new type of bike. However mine didn’t work and I didn’t really know this until we started the ride so that wasn’t fun. The girl did an “80 ride” so rather than focusing on our resistance the whole time we worked on keeping our rpms at 80. She would do check ins for people who didn’t have a working tracker. She also played house music the whole time which was okay. But sometimes I like to sing along to a song to keep me motivated. Even though we didn’t change the resistance much I was sweatingggg so it must have been a good workout! After that it was back day and core work.

I then headed home for a day of pampering!

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Mani/Pedi

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Finalllllly after way too long color change and haircut. I told my hair dresser I wanted to keep my length but do something different so she said let’s try red. I have been very blonde and dark brunette so I said why not!

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I am loving it! It’s not red, red, it’s got a nice tint of red!

Thursday I planned on going for my long run but the night before my ankle was bothering me and I wasn’t sure if I should go. So I decided to sign up for a 6:15 Shred class and see how it felt in the morning. I woke up with no pain and decided to go for the Long Run and cancel the class.

So. Glad. I. Ran.

It was such a beautiful day. No humidity. Gorgeous.

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11 miles. Boom. For some reason everything just feels more right with the world after a long run.

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I tried the Tropical Fruit Nuun on my run and it was sooo good, wayyy better than the watermelon flavor. The watermelon has a little mediciney taste and this did not at all. I also had the peanut butter Gu, OMG literally tasted like peanut butter. It totally sped me up a little after that mid-run treat!

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Have I mentioned that I def recommend the Nathan Water Belt that I got for $20. It is not awkward, holds the perfect about of water/nuun water in each bottle and has a great place to stash all your belongings:

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Refuel on the balc:

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Then I baked some healthy chocolate chip cookies  to bring over to my friend’s house. She was making me lunch and I wanted to bring something!

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We had an awesome time catching up, I hadn’t seen her in so long so we had plenty to talk about! She has a pool so we enjoyed lunch and dessert outside, went swimming and hung out in the sun!

After that I came home ate dinner quickly then headed to the Pier for free yoga outside with a friend.

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It was a great way to end the day especially after a long run. I feel so blessed every time I get to enjoy and take in this view of NYC. It’s just gorgeous!

Today I am heading to a noonish time body pump and then babysitting later on. Tomorrow is a planned rest day and Sunday is the Giant’s Stadium 5k!

Have a great weekend everyone! 

 

 

 

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More Native American Food and Bad Yoga

Hope everyone is doing well! I have a feeling it is going to storm a lot tonight. The air is like soup.

Sunday

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I started the day with yoga and about 20 minutes of necessary foam rolling. I didn’t take normal yoga class that I take in Hoboken. I took it at a new to me NYSC up by my parents and when I got to the class I knew it wasn’t going to be like my normal yoga class with Hope in Hoboken (like come on you have to be an awesome yoga teacher when your name is Hope.) :-)

First, they didn’t have yoga mats, just regular mats. When I showed up everyone seemed to know each other and they were super chit chatty, not zen, like the class I go to. The teacher showed up literally when it was supposed to start and she just seemed like a hot mess. We immediately went into the “practice” and she wasn’t using any yoga terminology. She was yelling, yes yelling, put your butt up in the airrrrr, rather than downward dog. I tried my best to breathe and close my eyes as much as I could so I could find some Zen. Now I know to not take that class again.

After that I ate my overnight oats that I brought with me because I wanted to run to the Trader Joes that was by the gym after.

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Sometimes I worry that I am too over planned and too over prepared but then I just have to say, that is me, I feel more calm when I have a plan and know what is going on. Guess that Type A personality is just me and it’s alllll good. ;-)

Since I know I have two 5ks this week I wanted to have some pasta with my meal this week for good carbs. Normally I have brown rice and quinoa pasta but I decided to try this whole wheat pasta which actually has 8g of protein in it.

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My Sicilian grandmother is probably rolling over in her grave knowing that I am eating whole wheat pasta but I promise grandma I will not have it with sauce! I am using it to carbo-load! ;-) 

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I made turkey “muffins.” I have made them before, it’s just ground turkey, zucchini, a sauteed onion, some flour and and egg. Bake at 450 for about 40-45 minutes in a big muffin tin. On the side I have roasted brussel sprouts and broccoli. I had it tonight and it is delicious!

After all that cooking I re-fueled with a random lunch. Broccoli, squash, tuna, and raisins with a sweet potato on the side.

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Later on I headed to the pool even though it was cloudy and I finished The Fault in Our Stars! I am sadly proud that I finished a book in one week. I actually went to the library today to get another book! Goal is to finish it in a week again!! Anyway- I def recommend The Fault, it was soooo good and I cried a few times. Now I need to see the movie.

I then came home to a 5 star meal made by my dad. He literally went to like 10 stores and cooked for 2 days straight to make this Native American meal. Cooking is a hobby of his (and it is becoming mine!) and he did an amazing job!

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He re-created the side dish on the right with the accurate ingredients this time. Roasted corn, blue potatoes, hominy, corn smut, pancetta, cactus, butternut squash, and sage. The main course was steak with mushrooms on top, green beans with two sauces. The white sauce is roasted corn chowder and the red is bean with chorizo. It was legit 5 star. No need to go out to dinner when you have my dad!

Dessert:

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Watermelon and prickly pear. This was my first time having prickly pear and I liked it!

Monday (today)

I woke up early to head to the gym for Shoulders & Arms and core then a very intense spin class. Maybe it was the heat and humidity today but it was a tough one today.

My friend and I were going to head to the pool but with the crappy weather we decided to re-schedule.

I then came back to Hoboken and headed to the Library and the health food store so I could get some coconut water to hydrate for the 5k tomorrow night. Now I can’t buy one thing in a health food store, so I came back with coconut water, Arctic Zero (new flavor), a packet of vega protein powder- I have been wanting to try this stuff and I saw a packet so I went for it, and of course why not some more Quest bars to have on hand.

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Will keep you posted on how I like it!

I picked up my swag bag for the 5k tomorrow night:

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It came with a “mystery gift card.” You could go in the store and find out how much it was worth. I got a $10 one so decided to buy some Gus and Nuun. Pretty sweet deal!

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Will let you know how the Tropical Nuun is and the Peanut Butter Gu!

I will update you on how the 5k goes tomorrow night! Hoping for no rain!!

Do you wear spin shoes to spin? If so, what brand/where did you get them?

Favorite Nuun or Gu or both flavor? 

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Energy Bites Recipe + more!

Happy Saturday Night! You can tell I am partying it up big time, blogging on a Saturday night ;-) I am actually “away” for the weekend up by my parents to enjoy the pool and feel like a mini-get-a-way from Hoboken.

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This was my Friday Morning. Pro-compression socks, coffee, ice on the ankle and magazines. I am living the life!

After lounging for a little I decided to experiment by making “energy bites/balls.” I see so many  recipes all over the internet and decided to make some with the ingredients I had on hand. A lot of recipes call for wheat germ which I didn’t have so I made some switches. Now I would say they taste delicious and are great to have a quick bite after or before a workout, however these have to be stored in the freezer otherwise they kind of are falling apart. I’ll share my recipe, but just know that there are definitely better recipes out there. I will def experiment again!

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Combine:

  • 1/4 cup chopped up raisins
  • 1/4 cup coconut flakes (unsweetened)
  • 1/4 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 tbsp chopped salted almonds
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 3 tbsps of melted honey (I feel like this was too much and that is why they aren’t staying together)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsps. of Peanut Butter & Co. Honey Peanut Butter
  • 1 tbsp of almond flour (I put this in at the end when I felt like it was too melty)

Combine all in a bowl and keep in the fridge for an hour, then take out and make them in small balls. Like I said, my recipe, you have to store in the freezer. I had one after my Friday night workout and it was a great hold over for the train ride home!

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After making my energy bites, I got my free slurpee with my friend and we enjoyed them with our lunch in the sun by the pier.

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They didn’t have Pina Colada so I got a Mango one!

Later on I headed into the city to meet up with my friend for a fun and crazy Friday night workout. We took Body Pump then Spin! I worked up quiteeeee a sweat! I made sure to have an egg in between the workouts just so I wouldn’t die haha. I had fun working out really hard on a Friday night. It felt so invigorating!! We had a really great time and we are hoping to continue to do it on Fridays when we can! My how I have changed in a year. I never would have seen me go to “happy hour” at a gym last year!

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Body Pump

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Spin!

After my “happy hour” I headed home had dinner and later for dessert…

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Strawberries, PB & Choc Arctic Zero and one of my Energy Bites. Yummy Combo! After that I passssssed out from exhaustion!

This morning I woke up early on my own and was actually pretty hungry when I woke up. I knew I wanted to get a long run in so I had my usual Quest Bar and apple but decided I may need a little more since I had worked out a lot the night before. I remembered that I had bought a Honey Stinger Waffle and decided to try it out (and to kind of test if I wanted before a half or something).

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Now I have to say, these taste freaking amazing! It felt like I was eating a really yummy cookie. I don’t think I will continue to buy them because I can always have a Kashi Bar if I need a little more before a race/long run. All the ingredients were organic but they were basically what you would use for a cookie recipe. Just because it has organic on it doesn’t make it healthier. I think the Kashi bars have better ingredients (chia, almonds, flax, etc.)

I also experimented with a Honey Stinger Organic Vanilla flavored (sorry no picture) Gu and I enjoyed the taste. I like the Salted Caramel Gus better, but I didn’t mind this flavor. Again, the ingredients on this are organic but I don’t know if there is much of a difference between regular Gus.

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10 miles at my easy pace. Some splits were longer than others because my ankle was acting up a little. But all in all it was a gorgeous run and my farthest run without any music! I brought my iPod but never felt the need to turn it on! Just enjoyed the beautiful weather!

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This came up on my Mile Post Quote of the Day App and I truly love it. There is nothing wrong with therapy (I’ve gone and loved it) but running is just a little cheaper ;-)

I then relaxed my worked out legs by the pool:

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Still not done but hopefully will be finished with it this weekend!

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Because why not take a selfie before going out to dinner?

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My mom wanted to go to this Diner and I wanted Greek food. She won. But I am glad she did because I got the best of both worlds. This amazinggg salad: arugula, almonds, feta, grilled chicken, cucumbers and watermelon with a feta dressing. It was SOOO good. Since I still wanted Greek food I got a side of grape leaves to help fulfill the craving. You can still make healthy choices when eating out and it tastes great!!!

Afterwards we got frozen yogurt (not fro-yo) from an Ice Cream place with my fav candy: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups on top!

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I am looking forward to yoga, food shopping/meal prep, and hopefully the pool (as long as it doesn’t rain) tomorrow! Is it okay to count yoga as part of your rest day? I feel like it’s an hour of good stretching?

This week I have two 5ks one on Tuesday night in Hoboken and on Sunday the 20th in Giant’s Stadium! I’m not sure which one I will try and really “race.” I am thinking the Giant’s Stadium one because it’s a NYRR, however it might be fun to just run it and take cool pictures! We will see??

What do you do on “rest days”? 

What toppings do you get on your fro-yo/ice cream?

 

 

 

 

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Bar Review (no, not that bar!)

Hello friends!

Today’s post I have been working on collecting my thoughts and reviews for a few months, so this whole post is dedicated to bars! No… not the drinking bar. The protein/granola bar! All opinions are my own- just doing this for fun and to share my thoughts on all the bars I have been to ahem tried ;-)

 

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 Kind’s Almond and Coconut.

I really enjoy Kind bars because they don’t have many ingredients and they are ingredients that I recognize. I had this bar after a Hot Yoga class before heading to do some weight lifting and it was great fuel in between workouts. There isn’t a huge amount of protein in them but the combination of almond and coconut held me over between workouts.

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 Kind’s Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate with 7g of protein

I have had this bar a few times before a long run. I like that it has 7 g of protein and the dark chocolate and peanut butter combo is a winner. It held me through 6-9 mile runs so it is a good one. Another plus are the natural ingredients.

 

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Luna’s Chocolate Dipped Coconut and Chocolate Peppermint Stick

The coconut bar is delicious. These are the mini’s (they gave them out at the women’s half expo) but I have had the regular size which had 9 g of protein. I have had this before long runs as well which held me over pretty good. I like the chocolate coconut combination. However there are a lot of ingredients listed on these bars. The mini ones are a great mini “pick me up” or nighttime snack. The Chocolate Peppermint stick was a nice treat for more of “holiday time.”

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 Quest’s Cookies and Cream

Out of all the bars in my review this is one of my favorites (hello two pictures haha). I LOVE these before a long run! I had this before my first Half and along with Gatorade throughout the half, this definitely sustained me. I recommend drinking with a good amount of water and make sure to let it digest about a half hour-hour before working out or going for a run. With 21 g of protein, pretty recognizable ingredients, and the taste is SO good! I always like to savor every bite!

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 Quest’s Coconut Cashew

This is a runner up in the Quest Bar Category for me. The flavor is great and I really enjoy the coconut/cashew combination. I have had these before some weight lifting sessions and it really has kept me fueled for the whole workout!

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Quest’s Double Chocolate Chunk

This is a more disappointing bar for me. It was actually the first Quest Bar I tried and wasn’t sure about the world of protein bars. I felt like it tasted fake and processed. Glad I gave other flavors a try though!

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Kashi’s Honey Almond Flax 

Kashi’s Honey Almond Flax is my go-to have in my bag granola bar. It has 7 grams of protein which isn’t a lot compared to Quest bars but it’s good to have on hand. I like the taste of these and are always good in a pinch!

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Quest’s Banana Nut Muffin

I really liked the Banana Nut Muffin flavor. It wasn’t a bold flavor but just the right amount to taste like a banana nut muffin.

 

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Quest’s Vanilla Almond Crunch

I really enjoyed the flavor of the Vanilla Almond Crunch. Again, not a bold in your face flavor but yummy.

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Quest’s Lemon Cream Pie

The lemon Quest bar was also really delicious. I liked the hint of lemon but not too bold of a flavor. The color of the bar was the same as the Vanilla Almond Crunch which I thought was interesting.

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Quest’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

The chocolate chip cookie dough is def one of my favorites, it even may be more of a favorite than the cookies and cream. It was SO delicious and tasted just like cookie dough!

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Quest’s Chocolate Peanut Butter 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Quest Bar was SO good! Tasted more chocolatey with a nice hint of peanut butter. I am a huge fan of chocolate and peanut butter (Reese’s is my favorite candy) and this did not disappoint!

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Power Bar’s Chocolate Chip Mint Cookie

They gave these out at the Brooklyn Half at the finish line and I could not stomach a protein bar. (I did scarf down the bagel and banana though haha). I didn’t love this, it kind of tasted like chemical fakeness. Probably not something I would buy on my own.

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Quest’s Strawberry Cheesecake

Quest’s Strawberry Cheesecake, I liked this one! I can’t eat real cheesecake because my tummy doesn’t allow it but this was a nice substitute I guess haha. I liked the strawberry flavor!

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Quest’s Cinnamon Roll

Quest Cinnamon Roll- is up there as one of my favorites! It was the perfect taste of cinnamon, not too sweet. Just delicious!

I hope this information was helpful! I think bars are such a great snack before or after a workout or just when you need something to tie you over between your next meal!

 

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I am a Sweat Pink Ambassador!

Hello friends!

Before I get to my eats/workouts updates let’s chat about my title! I read so many amazing fitness/running/healthy eating blogs and I noticed that many of the blogs I read the girls are Sweat Pink Ambassadors. I decided to check out their website and I loved their message. Promoting a positive and healthy attitude toward living a healthier and happier lifestyle through fitness! That is what I am all about so I decided to apply a few weeks ago. I hadn’t heard back so I figured that I didn’t get in but woke up to the surprising email! I am so excited! I have my “badge” on the side of my blog- click on it to find more about their site and their message! They have some awesome opportunities to try out various exercise classes so I am hoping to get more involved soon!

Now to my update!

Wednesday

I woke up nice and early because I knew I had things to get done for the rest of the day. I have been starting my day with coffee, a quest bar, and an apple and then have been eating my regular breakfast after the gym. It is weird but good to switch up my routine a bit! I can get very regimented at times and I think having the summer to shake things up is good for my mind, body and soul. :-)

I headed to the gym for a nice leg day  plus a few of my own leg day exercises that I keep up with for running along with core work and some stretching. I had decided to go to the uptown gym just for a change of scenery. It is so much nicer than the downtown one so while I have the time this summer I plan on going there more when I can. It is about a half an hour walk so I decided to bring my breakfast with me so I could eat it by the water afterwards instead of having to walk so far and then eat lol. Girls gotta refuel after a long workout!!

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I took a gym selfie because I wanted to show those booty shorts again haha I still feel a tiny bit self conscious when I first put them on but then, I’m like girlllll stop it, you work hard! :-) That was my view as I ate my breakfast. I have always been a summer girl but running has made me an outdoor girl. I hate being inside especially with summer weather so I will do anything to be outside and if that means eating breakfast with a pretty view then sign me up!

Oh- and those overnight oats were amazing!

Recipe: half cup rolled oats, about a tablespoon of chia seeds, a handful (or little less) of raisins, and then drop little bits of the amazing-can’t-stop-eating-jar-will-be-done-soon Cinnamon Raisin Peanut butter all over the rolled oats. I am a big eyeballer when it comes to most cooking (except baking) but I just put little drops all around so when you add in a serving size of Fage greek yogurt and a splash of milk all the peanut butter is spread throughout your overnight oats. Mix it all together then stick in the fridge overnight. It was SO delicious and if you use the Fage greek yogurt you have 20 g of protein in them! Not a bad deal!

After that I headed up to my parents to lounge by the pool before going to tutor!

Oh and my friend got me this adorable water mug for hot or cold drinks so I decided to put some strawberries in my water and oh my goodness I am so happy I did that!

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It reminded me of the amazing vacation I took with my sister to Miami when we stayed at the Fontainebleau (when I thought I was a baller and spent my money left & right while living at home ;-) ). They had all these water jugs by the pool and on the beach and they had different fruits infused like coconut or strawberries or oranges, even the gym had water with cucumber. Ahhh take me back to that vacation pleaseeee. 

Later on after dinner I got that sweet tooth craving so I decided to have some dates but didn’t have any coconut butter left (I had only bought a little package just to see if I liked it) however I had some coconut flakes left from baking so I decided to put them on it and it was great! (Not as amazing as dates with coconut butter- not coconut peanut butter- big difference) But it did the trick:

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Today

I decided to wake up without an alarm. I slept until about 7:30 which was pretty good for me. I then woke up had my pre-workout breakfast and coff then headed out the door for a run. The weather was great, not too hot, and a really nice breeze. I think I ran 3-4 miles at my easy pace, my Garmin was not working though! The time was going but it stopped counting the mileage at 0.06. I hope it’s not broken, I just got it in October so I will be super bummed if that is the case. My ankle bothered me a tiny bit, I could have been going a little too fast or it was just irritated from speed work on Tuesday. I just gotta watch my form and pace.

I then headed to the Gym following my run for stretching and core work then back day . It’s so funny all this “body building stuff” started for me in January literally just to build my core and muscle because my Physical Therapist told me I wouldn’t be able to run if I didn’t build my core. I did it for running but didn’t know I would actually truly enjoy lifting weights. I like seeing my progress in how much heavier of weights I can lift and I do see a huge difference in my body because of it. I never had any intention of finding another sport (yes I think weight lifting is a sport :) ) to enjoy but I really really do love it!

After the gym I came home ate breakfast and did some things around the apartment.

Some nut butter “porn” ;-)

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Almond butter and cinnamon raisin peanut butter (let’s see how many times I will mention this stuff in a week).

It was kind of cloudy this morning but then after noon time the sun started to shine through  so I decided to pack up my lunch and head to the pier for some sun and reading!

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How cute is the Vera Bradley bag? My friend got it for me for my birthday (along with the water container)!

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Strawberry water, a yummy salad and The Fault in our Stars. Awesome afternoon! I was only one chapter 2 when I got there and I am now on Chapter 12. It is such a good book and easy read! I want to see the movie after this!

Tomorrow I am hoping to get out to the pier earlier and bring along my free slurpee! Don’t forget that tomorrow is 7/11 everyone, gotta get your free slurpee! I am taking my favvv body pump tomorrow afternoon followed by a spin class because I have a girl crush on the instructor! She is so nice and motivating! I’m gonna have to pack some snacks for in between the two classes and right after but I think I will be able to handle them back to back (I hope!). She always invites everyone to take it after so she must not think it’s too crazy to take spin after body pump!

This weekend is looking to be pretty quiet! I am hoping to get a long run in on Saturday and yoga on Sunday other than that I think I will be lounging by the pool and taking in the sun. :-)

What flavor slurpee will you be getting?  I usually like Pina Colada but if there is something mangoey I may try that!

Any book recommendations for after The Fault in Our Stars? 

 

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Native American Side Dish (and more)

Hello friends, hope you are holding up in this heat!

Monday

I headed to the gym (the one up by where I work) for shoulders and arms then took a very intense but awesome spin class. The woman had us do squats on the bike and really pushed us to ride “through the sand” as she said. She got off the bike for a few songs and would come over to different people and really help push them by giving them counts and dancing along. I really enjoyed the class! I did a little core work on the stability ball, which I totally felt today!

After that I did some food shopping and Monday meal prep since I couldn’t do it on the weekend.

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This week’s meal is TJs apple chicken sausage, peppers and onions and sweet potatoes! I may try my hand at making homemade tortillas to turn this into a quesadilla.

After that I relaxed by the pool then came home to a delicious dinner cooked by my Dad. He had been traveling to Arizona and bought a Native American cookbook and decided to try out one of the side dishes.

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Ingredients (let’s see if I can remember): corn, purple potatoes, peppers, pickled cactus, sage, pancetta, and butternut squash. I think there were a few ingredients we couldn’t find but holy amazingness. I totally stole leftovers to have this week ;-)

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He also grilled up some yummy turkey burgers and I added some fresh veggies on the side!

Tuesday

Woke up nice and early to beat the heat for Speed Work!

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2.5 mile warm up run at an easy pace. At the track: 5 x 4 minutes at tempo pace. 2.5 mile cool down run at easy pace.

After that a delicious breakfast!

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I made The Cookie ChRUNicles berry and quinoa mix just to have more carbs to re-fuel. I couldn’t add the blueberries (allergy) and instead of honey I used my new peanut butter honey mixed in. I paired this with butternut squash, two hard boiled eggs, and a banana with the holy amazingness cinnamon raisin peanut butter (I can’t get over how good this stuff is).

I then did some cleaning and organizing as my old roommate moved out and a new one moved in, so I am trying to get the place all nice and clean and organized!

After cleaning up a storm I refueled with a big ol’ delish salad (with the Native American dish on the side):

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Later on I visited with my godson (who is sickies :-( ) and his mommy (one of my best friends) and now I am relaxing until my kickball game. I secretly wish it would rain so it would be cancelled, but I don’t think I’m going to get lucky this week.

What is your favorite nut butter? I don’t know if I can answer this question.

What do you put on your big ol’ salad? Arugula, shredded carrots, TJs grilled chicken, raisins, tomatoes, chick peas, and avocado with balsamic dressing and a sweet potato on the side!

 

 

 

 

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Fourth of July and Birthday Weekend Update! (lots of pics)

Hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July! We will get back to our regularly scheduled programming of health, fitness and food! Hope the change in my thoughts and reading and writing was a fun and random change!

Wednesday was Body Pump in Rockefeller Center with my fav instructor! I was nervous about rocking booty shorts but I did it and it felt great showing off my hard work ;-)

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She did the new Body Pump 90 (I guess it’s a new routine) and it was awesome!

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Really liked this NYSC!

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Fun sighting in Rockefeller Center!

Dinner this week:

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Thursday I went on a hot and sticky tech free run! I decided I didn’t need my garmin or music and I was going to run at my easy pace based on how my body felt. I’m sure I did about 4 miles because I know the routes that I take through Hoboken, but it felt great just to get out there and run.

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Later on I did some baking to bring over my friend’s house the next day. I used my Cupcake Recipe Book and substituted the flour for whole wheat flour and the sugar with coconut sugar. They tasted great! Not too sweet and almost muffin like consistency.

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Rocking my baking apron ;-)

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My new mixing bowls that I bought at Shop Rite.

I also found whipped icing that seemed to be the best choice.

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Only 13 g of sugar at 100 calories for 2 tbsp. It’s great because you can just use food coloring to change the color of the icing.

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Before :)

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Ta-da! :)

PS- I totally only made a dozen because they are hard to make! I had to use my electric hand mixer (from my baking basket) and it was tough!

Friday the 4th we woke up to gloomy day. I had already planned it as a rest day and decided to make the most of it. My friend and I had coffee and walked around Hoboken until the rain came.

Look what is coming to Hoboken:

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Bareburger! So excited!

After that we headed to our friend’s house for some apps and burgers on the stove to make the gloomy day somewhat festive:

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I rocked Ralph Lauren on top and Tommy Hilfiger on the bottom, could I get anymore American? Haha

The next morning I woke up and headed into Central Park to meet up with Jen for a Birthday Long Run!

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The time literally flies by with her! We just run and talk and have an awesome time! Looking forward to continue to join her on long runs as she trains for the NYC Marathon!!

Post Run Birthday Breakfast:

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Sweet Potato Pancakes (with nut butters) and a broccoli and cheese omelette.

Later on I headed back into the city to celebrate with all my friends at the Boat Basin!

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Miami Vices in reverse!

I had two and half drinks the whole night, very different from past birthdays. I still woke up feeling pretty gross but I just am so happy that I don’t need alcohol to enjoy a birthday (or any occasion for that matter). I am not going to say I will never drink again, just a lot less and in moderation!

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Me and my sister. Dress is from Dear Hannah in Hoboken.

This morning like I said I woke up kinda headachey but I decided to head to yoga anyway!

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I hadn’t gone in about 2 weeks so this felt SO necessary. I really feel like it gets a good stretch in all my muscles after all the running/lifting that I put my body through.

Post yoga snacking:

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After that my parents came into Hoboken and we went out to celebrate my birthday! I had a $50 gift card to Restaurant.com so we picked Havana Cafe which was on the list of places we could pick from.

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Cuban Iced Coffee.

 

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We shared empanadas and yuca fries with this yummy garlic dipping sauce! So good!

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Omelette with spinach, tomato and manchego cheese with Cuban home fries and Cuban toast.

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Of course a side of sweet plantains!

It was a great meal!! Afterwards we headed by the water to take in the view take some pics:

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Dress: J. Crew Shoes: Burberry ;-)

I then headed up to my parents to lay by the pool!

After that we picked up a light dinner filled with veggies since we feasted at lunch!

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We went to this awesome market by them that has some unique finds and yummy prepared food. We got a salad, grilled veggies, asparagus, and tilapia. While I was there I found these on sale for $2.99 a jar!

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I always see these and they are usually pretty pricey so I couldn’t pass up the price. I have never tried either flavor, Cinnamon Raisin Swirl and The Bee’s Knees which has honey, but I cannot wait to dig into these jars! Will let you know how they taste!

Phew! What a post! All in all I had an amazing birthday weekend. I was able to spend time with all my friends and family, celebrated with a run, and enjoyed great food!

Looking forward to being on my “summer schedule” for the next few weeks which will include switching my workouts to the morning! However I want to do some fun summer night runs along the water.

This summer has started off awesome! Looking forward to all that is to come!

 

 

 

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Reading (and writing) to be changed.

Good Morning!! Happy 4th of July!

Today I am hanging out in my bed enjoying my planned rest day. It unfortunately is super gloomy out and the parade at my parent’s house was moved to tomorrow (my birthday). I am going to head to a friend’s house and hopefully see some NYC fireworks but who knows with this silly weather. It’s supposed to be nice on the 4th of July, c’mon weather didn’t you get the memo?

Anyway. As I previously mentioned I have been a commuter girl this week heading all the way uptown to Teacher’s College at Columbia University. I go every summer to learn about either Reading or Writing and study under the rock stars of the teaching world. I know this is a health and fitness blog but I really feel the need to reflect on this week and it some weird way I see a tie to running/health/fitness/social media as well. So please don’t leave the page (I mean do what you gotta do) and hear me out as I make sense of my learning and try and tie it into the theme of my blog.

I don’t want to get into the fine details of how I learned about close reading through shared reading or observing students’ MSV while reading. However I want to discuss this theme of reading and writing as a means of agency (words from Peter Johnston) and expression.

Lucy Calkins (teacher rock star) started the week off talking about the need to have a love of reading and the only way to get better at teaching reading is to read more. I have to be honest. Sometimes I question myself, am I a real reader? I can be a book abandoner and I don’t seem to make time to get into fun novels. However, if I stop and think about it, I read so many blogs each morning as I sip on my coffee. I love Runner’s World and Fitness Magazine and even my Cosmos ;) I get true joy of reading my students’ writing pieces. I love re-reading favorite read alouds each year to my kids. I scroll through Instagram and Twitter, which is a form of reading. Can I do better as a reader? Yes. Although I am not reading the NY Times or up on the latest novel am I still a reader? Yes.

Now maybe you are saying, cool, you are a reader, andddd…?

This week while at the workshop during a break I stumbled upon an Instagram post. “Decide what it is you want. Write that ish down. Make a ___ing plan. And… Work on it. Every. Single. Day.” After that quote in the comments section this instagram writer went on what I read as a “rant” (every reader goes into a text with their point of view) about shout out to the people who don’t post every single workout and to those who feel the need to post about their 4 mile runs and continued about how you need to do it for yourself not the picture, etc. etc.

After close reading this text I was affected.

A woman I meet this week said she teaches her kids that “We read to be changed.” She explains that everything you read changes you in some way. Whether you have worked on your reading process more, you learned something new, you made a connection; you are changed.

Back to the instagram picture. I was somewhat bothered by this man’s remarks. Reading and writing go hand in hand. I would no doubt say I am a writer. I write this blog, I have the teaching of writing “in my bones” (for some reason I just really get it), I have kept journals, and I have published a few things. Well as I read this man’s comments, I kind of felt like he was attacking people’s right to write. Instagram, yes a source of social media, is really a forum for writing and reading. People take pictures, post quotes, share their pride, share their woes, share their inspirations, share new concepts, and the list goes on. I kind of felt like this writer was bashing the ones that write for pride and even inspiration.

There may be a fine line between bragging and pride and I guess with your schema and point of view that is how you would close read an Instagram post of someone’s “4 mile run” or “muscle gains.” If you go into reading the text (instagram post) with an eye of seeing these “fitspiration” posts as a means to brag then that is how you see it. Some people read these posts as true inspiration. Some people read these post to compare themselves and either feel better or worse about themselves.

I’m not fully sure if I have my brain fully wrapped around what I am trying to say. But what I think I am trying to say is, that social media, blogging, fitness magazines are all a forum for reading and writing. We read to be changed sometimes it isn’t a pretty change and sometimes it is.

That instagram writer’s post made me question my forms of writing. Sometimes my blog posts are a weekly recap of workouts and food or my Instagram pics are of the 4 miles I ran. Am I doing it to brag, (I sure hope it doesn’t come across that way- however it depends on the reader’s point of view) to inspire, to document, to reflect? I don’t know if I can answer that question. I am writing. Yes, I think about my audience (as in who is reading this, not how will they react) as I am expressing my thoughts through a picture and a caption. In my blog, I am writing to maybe give people ideas, and to have a place to document my experiences. Do I always question and hold on to each and every word I write? No. I am expressing my inner thoughts and that is what I have ownership of.

To try and conclude and come full circle, I don’t know if I fully can, reading and writing are our means of ownership (agency) and expression. I read blog posts and sometimes begin to compare. I see instagram posts and question what I do. But sometimes I read blog posts and get awesome ideas or feel inspired. Sometimes I close read instagram posts and make connections. It all depends on my point of view.

We all have full ownership of our reading and writing. Reading and writing is the most powerful form of communication. Social Media has made it even easier to get it out there.

So to the instagram writer that bashes the 4 mile posts, I see your point of view, I see your ownership and agency of your reading and writing. And I will continue to read
and
write
and
be
changed.

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