Wouldn’t It Be Nice…

I made marvelous memories this past weekend but I also spent much of it in a negative funk with too much focus on body image, guilt, fear, comparison traps, and myself in general. The idea for this post popped up in my head yesterday I was taking a walk after the gym and feeling bad for leaving Zumba class halfway through because it was causing lots of pain in my shin.

Because, wouldn’t it be nice…

…if rest could be viewed as a component of a workout/training plan, and not a break from it?

…if putting on pants wasn’t something that needed to be preceded by a pep talk?

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…if mental effort didn’t have to be wasted on wondering the secret of that flat-stomached girl in a crop top who just walked by?

…if deciding what to eat/drink could be mostly based on what one wants, instead of what one should have?

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…if the thought of putting time and effort into changing mindset, instead of body, wasn’t so damn terrifying?

…if the realization could be made that deciding to lift up your dress and “check” your stomach in the mirror while out at a restaurant is not really a normal thing to feel the need to do?

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…if the first instinct wasn’t to compare yourself to your beautiful friends, and instead just appreciate them for being beautiful people outside AND inside?

…if every activity or fun plan wasn’t viewed in terms of how many calories it will involve taking in and/or burning?

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…if first assumptions when meeting new people weren’t that they aren’t crazy about you?

…if it didn’t take a bunch of people telling you that you don’t look huge to convince you, even partially, that you don’t look huge?

…if posting a photo of yourself on Instagram was done because you like the photo, and not because you’re hoping for that one perfet comment that will reassure you that the large person you see in it is not actually large?

…if more focus could be placed on the loved ones that memories are made with, and not on the food and drinks consumed while making those memories?

Wouldn’t it be nice?

What is your “wouldn’t it be nice” today?

Five Things Friday: Yup, It’s Me Again!

Happy Friday! Three days of posting this week – a recent record for sure. But I’ve had more downtime thanks to learning my lesson last week about wearing myself out. I was home last night after work for awhile – enough time to write a blog post, watch an episode of Breaking Bad (STILL working on season 4), and catch up on my celeb gossip on E! News (my favorite mindless TV). But I’m getting ahead of myself – Five Things Friday hasn’t even begun yet. It will after Clare‘s charming graphic:

Oooh. Aaah. Link up!

1. Everyone should listen to this amazing song and take its message to heart. EVEN if you’re not a fan of country music or the show Nashville. The song is about not throwing away all the beautiful gifts you have been given. Often I listen to it whenever I’m feeling tempted to restrict, base my self worth on my appearance, or just hate myself in general. In the worst of my eating disorder I was throwing away everything I’d been born with and all I’d worked for my whole life. This is the kind of song that can pull me out of a funk and make me re-evaluate what’s REALLY important in life.

2. My left shin has REALLY been bugging me. I’ll see how my new shoes (post to come on those next week!) help the situation but I don’t think I can shrug off the left shin pain I’ve been feeling during my runs any longer. Even though I haven’t done a “long run” in almost two weeks now, I still am feeling it both during and after my runs, no matter the distance. I’ve been running 3-4 days a week since I started training so I think that next week I’m going to do just 2 runs. Hopefully that, plus my new running sneakers, will send improvement my way. If not I will have to get serious about the left shin pain because I don’t want an  injury sidelining me from the half marathon, or fitness in general.

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Half Marathon Training: Lessons So Far

So it’s been almost two months since I signed up for my first half marathon – the Zooma Women’s Cape Cod Half. And I’ve been excited to write a post about what I have learned so far during training, and my experience overall with running more than I ever have before!

Training for My First Half: What I’ve Learned (So Far)

1. Following a training plan makes it (mentally) easier to rest. I haven’t gotten to the point where I can take more than one rest day a week, but for someone who has previously gone as long as a month without a day COMPLETELY off from exercise, this is a big deal. I have been able to take a rest day almost every week since I started training. And I mean real rest days. Not rest days that are actually just days I don’t do cardio, or days I “only” do abs. I’m talking days I don’t do anything except my usual walking around Boston. Seeing rest days on the training plan I’ve been (loosely) following has made it easier for me to tell myself that it’s OK to rest. So has feeling like my rest days have made the long runs done on the day FOLLOWING my rest days easier to push through. It is now mentally normal for me to take one rest day per week. I can’t remember the last time that happened! Not that it’s totally easy, but I’ve been doing it! I’m thankful that I have realized this because I know it’s important if I want to prevent something like an injury – or taking steps backwards in recovery.

I definitely enjoyed this past Thursday's Sazerac more knowing I planned to take a rest day the next day!

I definitely enjoyed this past Thursday’s Sazerac more knowing I planned to take a rest day the next day!

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Trade Em Up Tuesday: Slowing Down

Another longer-than-a-week gap between posts – ugh! I honestly had time this past Sunday night to blog, but opted to sit in bed and color (something I haven’t done in awhile) while listening to NPR instead. I’m getting ahead of myself though. Let’s get rolling with a Trade Em Up Tuesday that’ll tell you what’s been up with me in the last week-ish.

Oreos and beer were involved.

Oreos and beer were involved.

I would trade…FOMO. I’ve had a serious case of it lately and it’s resulted in me wearing myself out. I need to take a step back and slow down. Is there an event coming up? I feel like I have to go to make sure I don’t miss anything. Someone’s having  a party? Well I can’t possibly miss it, it’ll be so much fun! The thing is, a lot of the time it’s not even worth it, so I need to take a step back and put on the brakes. I was sick this past weekend and spent all day Saturday contemplating whether or not I should still go to my co-worker’s party. In reality it should have been a no-brainer – NO. Stay home and REST.

NO. That's not resting.

NO. That’s not resting.

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Marvelous Miles!

This post will not be all about Zooma Cape Cod half marathon training, despite the title. But it will first and foremost make mention of a marvelous half marathon related accomplishment, because I’m just so psyched about it. Plenty of non-running-related marvelous to share too though!

Make sure you link up with Katie if you’re doing a MIMM post today!

Marvelous is…an 8 mile run on Saturday morning! So the run itself wasn’t exactly marvelous because well, I’m not one of those people who will pretend she enjoys running that long. (Not that those who do actually enjoy it are pretending they do.) I woke up really excited to just get my 8 mile long run done so I could feel awesome about it afterward, but during the run I had to battle with myself mentally. Once I got to my halfway mark (yay out and back runs!) I knew I’d make it back, so the mental battle became less – but the physical became more. I ran the whole thing pretty slow (over a 10 minute pace) and am glad I did.

It was hot out (I didn’t get started til 10AM – so worth it to sleep in though) and I also got a bit lost at one point. After calculating exactly how far I’d run, I realized I’d run 8.2 miles thanks to that fact. I did stop every now and then to wait at a crosswalk or drink water (thank you Charles River Esplanade for your water fountains) but the whole time I was actually running, I did run – I really didn’t want to walk! Big thanks to the BU campus grounds worker who sprayed me with his hose (I asked him to, don’t worry) right around mile 6. That got me through to the end! This is officially the furthest I’ve ever run because I ran 8 miles once back in 2010, and this was 8.2 miles. So seriously, go me. (Way better than the other GOMI.)

Yaaaaaas.

Yaaaaaas.

OKAY, back tracking to the start of my weekend…

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Long Newport Weekend

Once I got going writing yesterday’s post, I knew this recap of the long July 4th weekend in Newport, RI would have to be a two-parter. So many photos and so much to say! Thankfully I woke up at 5:30AM for no reason this morning, actually feeling quite well rested, so I was able to sneak in a quick run and sit down here to blog before starting my work day. Let’s pick up where we left off:

Sunday 7/6

So I woke up and despite feeling guilty about what I’d eaten/drank the day prior, I also just didn’t feel like going running or doing cardio of any kind. Our timeshare complex had a gym that I walked into and said…wtf? It had three machines, dumbbells that maxed out at 10lbs (not that I’m strong man or anything, but come on!), and not even a space to do abs and no bench. So I basically did arms for 20 minutes, abs from the now-longer-than-30-days ab challenge, and called it a day. I was happy to be able to hightail it to Mokka Coffeehouse down the street to get some work done!

The shop was adorable as you can see from the above photo, and the iced coffee DELICIOUS. I had it a few other days on my trip and definitely recommend this place, though Coffee Grinder is still my favorite coffee place in Newport simply because of the waterfront seating (unfair advantage). After plugging away for a couple of hours I got hungry and found out my family was having lunch at a diner. I just didn’t really feel like eating diner food, and OK I was having anxiety over it, so I decided to take my current read and check out Newport’s newest farm-to-table (this term is, to me, becoming overused) restaurant – Stoneacre Pantry.

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Newport for July 4th!

OK, sitting down to write this post because if I don’t, too much time will pass since last weekend and I’d really like to share the fun I had in Newport for July 4th! Anyone who has been reading my blog for a little while knows that Newport is one of my favorite places in the world. I make sure to go at least once per summer! You can check out past posts here:

Thursday 7/3

I ended up going to Newport a day early, Thursday late afternoon instead of Friday morning. Boston was essentially empty Thursday night, plus I wanted to beat Hurricane Arthur since he was scheduled to visit come Friday. Thankfully I have some great family friends in the form of the Cunninghams. They let me crash in their family’s Newport house Thursday night, and the ride there wasn’t even too awful – only half an hour longer than usual (due to predicted holiday weekend traffic). All I can say is I am glad I wasn’t going to the Cape!

Hit the road with fresh 4th of July nails!

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Trade Em Up Tuesday: Because It’s Not Monday

I tend to recap my weekends in the form of Marvelous In My Monday, but I didn’t feel like blogging Sunday night and yesterday was too busy. So since it’s Tuesday, this weekend recap is coming to you in the form of Trade ‘Em Up Tuesday, which I haven’t done in awhile (holy – since before I had my new job!) anyway.

I would not trade…the Friday night that I really needed. As I mentioned in Friday’s post, I felt like a big whale all day thanks to a looooong wine tasting and dinner for work the previous night. What kept me going all day was the knowledge that I’d be able to spend my evening with great people! First I met Jen at Eastern Standard for her first visit there (!!!) and we enjoyed some relaxing girl time over drinks and yummy food. Thankfully Jen agreed that the restaurant lived up to my hype and it was another nice visit of great service and spot-on cocktail recs!

My first drink – the Red Hook – a Manhattan-like cocktail. I took a sip and said “ahhh”.

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Five Things Friday: Good and Bad

I guess twice a week of posting is the best I’m gonna get this summer. Not that I won’t strive for more, but this season sure is busy. With my busy weekends I don’t have time to draft up posts on my days off! Oh well, fun fun fun, and I’m still posting as frequently as ever on Instagram. Let’s get this Five Things Friday show on the road.

Be sure to link up with Clare if you’re participating!

1. I ran 7 miles this week! Once again I got my long half marathon training run done on Tuesday and once again it went better than I thought it would. I stuck by the Charles River for most of the route and that made a huge difference. The gorgeous sights and “sea” breeze were helpful but most important was the presence of so many other runners. I really felt like a part of that Boston running “scene” and that motivated me to run strong and keep going! Really once I got to my halfway point and turned around, I knew I was home free because well…I have to get back home, right? The hardest part of my runs, I’ve found, is getting to a halfway point and turning around. But that makes the second half easier, so I’m going to try to stick with that type of route, instead of one that takes me on a circle of sorts.

I wore my pink and purple PUMA ensemble (the leggings too) and being so matchy-matchy definitely helped my run motivation!

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2014 Best of Hartford Magazine Winners Party!

Oh how I have missed my Connecticut events! Boston events are great, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t have nearly as much of a network here as I do back in the Hartford area. That’s one reason why I was so excited to be able to attend the 2014 Best of Hartford Magazine Winners Party this past Friday! As first runner-up for both Best Twitter and Best Blogger in the 2014 Readers’ Poll, I received one ticket for me and one for a plus one – so I brought Rachel, the girl who named this blog. Of course that’s really a reason way down low on a very long list of reasons why I brought her with me. She’s a great friend and I was so happy to be able to share the special night with her!

Our red carpet glam entrance - thanks Sean!

Our red carpet glam entrance – thanks Sean!

And of course I got to reunite with all of my CT event buddies! That included Carolyn Paine (founder of CONNetic Dance, which I have blogged about before) and Emily Cahill, Community Manager for Yelp Hartford. Oh, and you know Kat was there. That’s a given.

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