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Weekend Recap / 4

11 Nov

Yesterday, I completed an item off my bucket list. I ran a half marathon! And you know what, It wasn’t half bad. 🙂 After months of training and then taking two weeks off to prep for and work on a huge election, it was definitely not an easy run. But it was beautiful course and wonderful weather for the race.


They closed down the GW parkway for us to run on.
With thousands of participants, I guess they can do that. 🙂


We ran across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, hence the Woodrow Wilson Half Marathon.


That last leg of the race took us right down to the National Harbor. Beautiful!


This was the last half mile of the race. It was gorgeous! But, oh, I was hurting.

If you ever want a Half recommendation and live in the DC metro area, this is definitely one to check out. Bradley snapped some pictures of me at the very end of the race. I’m so happy he was there to cheer me on. 🙂

IMG_6600 IMG_6608 IMG_6609 IMG_6610 IMG_6612 IMG_6617 IMG_6620Next item on my Bucket List: MARATHON! After yesterday, I can’t wait to complete one!! What’s on your bucket list?


Running It Out

25 Oct

The last Healthify and running post I gave you was in May. I was running my first 10k on Memorial Day. That race ended so well for me and I finished in 58 minutes, which was under my goal time and pace rate! So in the spirit of continuing to knock racing goals off my bucket list, in August I decided to see if I could train for a half marathon.

September came around and I needed to find and sign up for a race. There wasn’t one in the range I wanted one so I compromised and signed up for one a month sooner than I was going to be ready. So Nervous!

A week before my race was supposed to happen, the government shut down. And because the race path was on National Park soil, they ended up rescheduling it for a month later. Now my half is on November 10th. I’ve had to adjust my training a little but I’m so happy to have some extra time!

Because the race trail covers both pavement and off-road, I’ve been running on both surfaces. Also, a couple of hills never hurt anyone. 🙂

Here are some pictures of my favorite trail run which goes over a river, down open roads, and up some hills. This day it also happened to start down-pouring during my run and I didn’t mind at all.  🙂

Ever tried to take a picture of yourself while running? (talent, my friend)IMG_3057

Healthify / 1

17 May

(I apologize for my absence yesterday afternoon. Since camps are fast approaching, work has been picking up and will continue to do so through July. Thank you for your understanding and patience. For the next two months, I will be limiting the amount of posts here down to a couple of times a week instead of twice a day. However, I will come back swinging at the end of July. Thanks for sticking with me!)

I can tell you something. These past two weeks didn’t go so well. Well not as far as my healthify goals. Last week I worked out once (a short, fast 2.2 mile run). This week I’ve run twice (12 total miles), did strength training once, and danced (dance workout) once. Definitely an improvement over last week, but I need to continue to look forward to my race in a week and a half.

Scale, vegetable, and water goals aren’t everything. There are other goals I did reach these past two weeks.

Did I tell you that I was racing my first 10k? The race is on Memorial Day, May 27, and I couldn’t be more excited about this (upcoming) running accomplishment.

533451_358893217496399_1508025728_nThis 10K is a Salute to Our Troops, meaning that all the proceeds go to supporting charities that help military families. I think I have more appreciation for races that are for charity or benefit a specific group of people and aren’t just for the runners benefit.

Sometimes running selfies don’t need to be taken. Sometimes a shadow of ones self will do. I promise that’s me.

This is me after hitting my 6.2 mile running goal!!!!!!! (extra exclamation marks for extra excitement)IMG_4096
I actually ran for 6.2 miles straight! And in just about an hours time I might add. That also means that I’m an “Hour Runner,” something I’ve wanted to be (in my mind) for a while. IMG_4290
Also, um, I burned 616 calories that run. That’s like half of what I eat in a day. 🙂 IMG_5544There you go. Even though I didn’t continue to make progress in many areas, consistency, fruit and vegetable intake, and weight, I did:

1) Train for a 10k race

2) Make my 10k goal distance (before the race I might add)

3) Run for a straight hour

What did you achieve this week? Any “non-scale” victories?

Healthify Update

30 Apr

I was updating my “Workout” spreadsheet last night and thought, “I’d probably better give my blog and update on how Healthy Living is going”. So would you like to hear? I can tell you now that I’ve reached a few goals, I haven’t actually seen improvement but I can feel it, and I’m still going strong. I have a lot more energy and I’m excited for the coming weeks.

Let’s take a look at my 3 goals from the last post and see how they are workin’ out for me. (take that back: Let’s see how I’m makin them happen!)

1. Drinking at least 1.5 Liters of water a day

I am drinking at least this much water a day. I have a 1.5 liter water bottle I bring to work every day. I also have a glass of water at breakfast and at least one at dinner. This is going very well. I love seeing the empty bottle at the end of the day and know that I drank it all!

2. Eating at least 1 serving of fruit and 1 of vegetables at each meal

Breakfast: I’ve starting drinking green smoothies as a breakfast meal replacement. They have at least 1 fruit and 1 vegetable in them (probably more like 3-4). They taste great and make me feel so energized in the morning.

Lunch: I bring a piece of fruit (usually an apple) and raw vegetables to work. Sometimes it’s more like a salad with fruit, but either way I get two more servings.

Dinner: This meal seems the hardest to incorporate fruits and vegetables into. I know it shouldn’t be, because how easy is salad or a can of corn and fruit salad? But just so you know, I’m still working here. I usually get either fruits or vegetables on the plate. So that adds up to at least 5 fruits/vegetables a day. Not bad Jill.

3. Alternating running and 1 hour strength training every other day

This is also going very well. I’ve found that my most consistent days are Saturday through Wednesday. By Thursday, I don’t want to work out and Friday, well forget it. I hope to get more consistent but hey, maybe I just take my weekend rest days early!

What I’ve achieved so far:

  1. I’ve worked up to running 5 miles at a time! This is a huge achievement for me. I jumped up and down when I hit that mark yesterday. 😀 
  2. I signed up for a 10k on Memorial Day. If any of you are in the area, come join me! It’s my first 10k and I haven’t run a race since Thanksgiving so I’m looking forward to it. (I just need to add 1.2 miles to my runs!)
  3. Consistency in the three goals mentioned above (this is a big step forward).

These pics are from my 5 miler yesterday! 😀 (including a running selfie!)

IMG_9613 IMG_5401

Future goals:

  1. Sign up for and run a 20k (there’s one at the end of the summer I have my eye on but we’ll see). I’d like to run one by the end of the year.
  2. Work out 6 days a week allowing one day off.
  3. Cut back on fried and breaded foods. (cut back, not eliminate = here and there, once a week or less)

Consistency is my Goal. As a wise Pinterest picture said once:


(Source unknown)

I turned my picture yesterday into my Facebook cover photo. Love it!


How are you guys doing! Any fitness, weight loss or healthy living goals you’d like to share?

Summer Plans

26 Apr

Last week over lunch break, I started jotting down some Summer 2013 Bucket List ideas for B and me. Most of them are things: we’ve been talking about doing but haven’t, located in the area, and in line with our interests. Not that there has to be guidelines but I like structure and organization. 🙂

So here’s my list of things I hope we can do this summer. It’s not complete and it’s not mandatory but I thought it would be fun to plan some weekends away and visit new places. As you can tell by many of the items on our list, we love baseball, parks and food! 🙂

IMG_8357 IMG_5559 IMG_5727 IMG_7322A few things like, Brunch with the Kauffmans and have friends over to play Kinect we’ve already done but I’m not going to cross them off because I’m hoping for multiple brunches and dance sessions this summer!

What are some things on your Summer Bucket List? We all have a list whether it’s written down or not. I’d love to hear you summer hopes and dreams!

Healthy Living. Take 12,523….

11 Apr

This post could have also been called, “turning over yet another new leaf.” Do you feel like that’s a constant problem when it comes to healthy eating and exercising? I often have resolutions that last one day. Or I get caught up in the web of Pins that promise abs in a month or a fat free body in a week. Things don’t just change over night people!

This is one of my favorite pins I just saw on Pinterest the other day:

f8f7301e947860aa376003dbe53ebec6It’s true. You won’t lose the weight you want in a day. You can’t expect that you will when it took more than one day to become the person you are now. I’m learning that it’s a slow and steady pace to healthy living. If you go to hard to fast either you’ll hurt yourself or it wont stick. Just like this next pin says, you won’t derail your diet by eating McDonalds once, but you also won’t get healthy just be eating one salad.



The past few weeks I’ve been thinking about this and I feel like you have to actually have a change in your mind when deciding to become more healthy. If you want real change in your body you must change how you think. If you’re thinking, “I should have picked the side salad” as you’re munching on a cheeseburger, it’s going to take more than an apple at dinner to change your lifestyle.

My husband has been very supporting as I’ve been thinking about how I want to change our eating habits and how I feel the need to work out more. He says, “I love  you just the way you are and I think you are beautiful. However, if you want to make a change I will support you and help you achieve your goals.” 🙂

So this week, starting last Saturday, I’ve begun:

  • Drinking at least 1.5 Liters of water a day
  • Eating at least 1 serving of fruit and 1 of vegetables at each meal
  • Alternating running and 1 hour strength training every other day

Maybe these are things you already do or maybe they seem so far out of your reach, but introducing fruits, vegetables and water into your diet will keep you full and satisfied with good food and working out, running or strength training every day will start you on a journey to healthy living. I promised myself that I couldn’t weigh in until I’d completed one week of this regiment. So I’m excited for Saturday morning!

Start out with small changes. You don’t have to run a marathon tomorrow (though I would like to in the near future). How are you working toward healthy living? What do you think of my 3 recent small steps?


Product Review: Jillian Michael’s Workout Video

9 Apr

Let me start with this picture. My bestie posted it on my Facebook wall today and it’s my feeling toward ab workouts.

548519_10151422110978381_182219881_nThis is how I used to work out. Much of the way through college it was laughing during classes and Whose Line is it Anyways episodes that kept my abs in shape. Now I can’t just rely on a good chuckle to keep that six pack.

Six years ago I bought a workout dvd called, No More Trouble Zones. The name says it all. It appealed to me. This workout promised to help tone all those areas that I wanted to make disappear.


Recently, I’ve felt the need to start a regular workout regiment back up again. I ran a lot last fall but I’ve been inconsistent recently and needed a kick start to get back in the routine. Jillian really knows how to make those “trouble zones” disappear in a fun and enjoyable way (if that’s possible).


Trouble Zones are defined as:

  • Saddle bags
  • Muffin tops
  • Wobbly arms

Now those are some things I could say goodbye to. It’s an hour work out which includes 5 minutes of warm up and cool down. You won’t get bored because Jillian arranges workouts in circuits so you’re not doing more than 10 of the same move in a row.  There are about 8 circuits total and by the end you really feel like you’ve worked out without leaving your living room.

I’d recommend it to anyone who wants a great work out in their home. It is my absolute favorite workout video and I actually enjoy the hour I spend doing it. It’s easy to follow, the moves are modifiable for beginners and hits every muscle in your body for a total workout experience. (Bonus: The next morning you’ll have that great “workout ache” feel)

I’m excited to see changes in my own body as I keep this exercise regiment up and I’ll keep you updated as things progress.

Product review: Map My Run

4 Apr

I want to share with you one of my favorite workout apps. Map My Run is an app that I’ve used on my iPhone for several years now. I turn it on every time I run and basically it maps where I go, how fast I get there and how long I run. This is first interface you will see. 
IMG_9657 (1)

Here’s the menu. From here you can record your current run, log a past run, or view a variety of other options. The social media aspect that’s integrated into this app is pretty awesome. It will send you notifications when your friends who are using the same app complete a run. I can also see most recent runs that others have completed, including their length, time and date. 
IMG_9657 (2)
Below you can see what the screen looks like as I’m recording a run. I actually allows me to find my way around as I’m running (in case I’m charting a new course). It also shows me mileage, total run time, and splits. Great features for sure!

IMG_9657 (4)If I run and don’t have my phone or don’t record it as I go, I can always log a workout later just by plugging in the facts. One thing I forgot to mention before is that if you tend to run the same route during your workouts you can select a past route and it will compare your current time with your previous times so you can measure your progress!

IMG_9657 (3)
Below you see a list of the routes I’ve run. It’s really handy for keeping track of your mileage for the week and view places you’ve run in the past.


Do you have a favorite running or workout app? I know people who use both Map My Run and the Nike app and find this one to be more accurate. Thoughts?

Healthy Living

26 Jan

Everywhere you look you will see a 10 step plan: which has you eating nothing and losing everything. I want to tell you that you don’t have to take extreme measures to live healthily. While, I am one to get caught up in the latest diet on Pinterest and the “5 workouts to a better core” articles, there are some practical steps that I can take to promote healthy living that I would love to share with you. These will, in small ways, guide you on a healthy path to life. They don’t take much time, effort, or life change, but as they become habits, you will see a positive change in your life.

  1. Eat and workout in moderation. Unless you are training for an eating competition or a marathon, you don’t need to be eating and running like crazy. But moderation does not mean you have to deprive yourself of food or exercise either. Take bites of the things you love and when you start a workout routine start slow. Everything in moderation.
  2. Be satisfied when you eat. Not stuffed full. Sometimes when I make a meal that I just absolutely love, I feel the urge to eat everything in sight, even when there’s enough for 10 people. Be conscious of how you are feeling when you eat. There is a natural pause in every meal when you sit back from your dish and take a breather. This is called, “time to stop eating!” Don’t eat more after that because you will go beyond feeling satisfied.
  3. Try to include vegetables and fruit in every meal. Especially if you eat these inherently healthy and non-processed food first, you will become full with the good and eat smaller amounts of meat and starch.
  4. When you eat out, plan to take half of your entrée home. Restaurants give you twice as much you need to eat. Again, eat until you feel satisfied and bring the rest home for lunch tomorrow.
  5. Drink water. The more water you drink the less false hungry you will feel. You know when you are bored and you think you are hungry? Usually you aren’t. Try drinking a glass of water and find something to get busy doing. That will often do the trick and you won’t find yourself needlessly eating when you aren’t hungry. If you have trouble getting in 8-10 cups a day, try adding lemon or lime juice or slices of fruit.
  6. Don’t skip meals. Thinking that skipping breakfast will help you lose weight is a myth. When I skip the first meal of the day I end up eating twice as much at lunch and dinner. You don’t need to make of the “lost meal” by eating twice as much. You are only one-meal hungry. Again, moderation. Eating a little something for breakfast will increase your productivity, energy and mood throughout the rest of the day.
  7. Be active a few hours a week. If this means walking the dog, playing tag with your siblings or going to the gym, everyone can find a way to be active. Think about how you feel after you are active. Does it uplift the rest of your day? For me, when I work out over lunch during my workdays, I find I have the energy to combat that 2:30 feeling and make it to 5 without a slump.
  8. Set a cutoff point for eating at the end of the day. If it’s dinner than don’t eat after dinner. If it’s 8pm than don’t eat after that. Eating gives you energy and you don’t need energy when you are about to sleep. Eating will raise your metabolism making it harder to get the rest you need.

These are not 8 steps to success. They are just helpful hints that I have thought about and make sense to me. As I am learning to live in a healthy manner, I am adopting these habits as my own.

Let me know what you think!

Morning Runner.

25 Sep

I’ve taken up running in the morning before work. I usually take the same route around neighborhoods in a large circle that adds up to 3 miles each trip. I really enjoy it for many reasons.

1. It gets my morning off to a great start.

I get to see the world before the sun comes up. It’s very peaceful and quiet in the morning before people turn on the lights in their house and cars start moving. I can hear the birds and see my breath as I run. I like being places where no one else has been yet that day. It’s like a fresh start every morning.

2. I feel so motivated to reach my running goals and I never regret a good workout.

I am running a 5k with my family at Thanksgiving when we get together at my parent’s house in New York. It’s called the Turkey Trot 🙂 It starts at 7am on Thanksgiving morning, which is not my ideal relaxing, parade-watching start to my day. But, we did it together 2 years ago and it was so much fun. I am also looking for a 10k race in the NOVA area before the end of the year. Long term goals are a half-marathon and then a real marathon.

3. Gets my metabolism going strong early in the day.

This helps burn fat and calories even before I’ve had my first bite to eat. Another thing that I do just after I come back from running is drink a glass of cold water with lemon. These are two more things that help speed up your metabolism when it’s often reluctant to start in the morning. (Like me trying to get out of a warm and cozy bed).

4. This is the beauty I get to see if I get my butt out of bed and run in the morning. (It only looks like this in the morning and I look forward to this location at the end of every run.)