Baby Fever

Wow, what a weekend. Still recovering! I had a great time visiting my family upstate and I felt relaxed while I was there and that’s all that matters! Backtracking to Thursday, my bus got cancelled for that night so I left at 8:00 AM on Friday. We were still late getting to Binghamton by about 40 minutes so by the time I got to the bus terminal and Enterprise picked me up to get my rental car (so great that they offer that service for free) it was already after 1:00. Starbucks was needed desperately, then I went to my mom’s. This is the longest I’ve gone in my life without seeing her, over 3 months, so it was really good to see her of course. I quickly showered then headed to Friends & Co to get my hair did. Seriously, I looked like shit. LOL! I just went way too long without a haircut or color and it was time. Here is the before and after.

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TARGET SELFIE!
TARGET SELFIE!

Ahhhh, it feels so much better. This length is freaking perfect. Words can’t express how much I love my stylist Sherette! I spent a couple hours in Target shopping for my friend’s baby shower and of course myself. I am a Target-aholic and it’s a good thing that it’s way out of my way to get to it in the city. I got a great pair of jeans (considering I HATE jeans, this is saying a lot), a new bra (do you know how hard it is to find 38B’s with NO added padding?! I like my flat chest, thanks), and an amazing new gym bag that is so adorable. I tried to find a pic online but doesn’t look like it’s on their site. I’ll try to remember to get a picture of it! When I got back to my mom’s, she made me her amazing turkey meatballs and we threw them on some salad with vodka sauce.

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This was my first real meal all day so it’s a good thing that just a couple hours later John and I were going to our very late Valentine’s dinner! He got into town around 10:15 so we hurried across the highway to go to one of our old favorites, Grande’s Bella Cucina. How gorgeous is their interior?!

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I’m gonna come right out and say it: we are complete and total pizza snobs after 3 years of living in New York City. This used to be my favorite pizza ever, and even though I had to peel off all this cheese, it just wasn’t close to as good as what we eat here. It’s true what they say, NYC pizza IS THE BEST.

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My valentine’s presents from John were obviously amazing. A huge loaf of heart-shaped raisin fennel bread and coconut cake from Amy’s Bread. I love this man.

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Saturday morning I was up super early to fit in a 2.5 mile run and a spin class before my friend’s baby shower breakfast. The spin class- not good. I barely made it 45 minutes before leaving and it was an 80 minute class. I won’t go into why it wasn’t good but it definitely will make me a stronger instructor. Either way, felt great to sweat!

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My friend Rachel’s baby shower was everything I knew it would be! First off, having it as a breakfast was genius. Everyone loves breakfast food and if you don’t… I mean, what’s wrong wit chu?! The spread of food was freaking incredible. Bagels, salmon, avocado, baked french toast casserole, fruit, eggs, potatoes, muffins, and a hot chocolate bar. I ate SO much of the baked french toast knowing it was so bad for you, but I am definitely going to healthify that up and try my own version of it.

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The beautiful momma-to-be!
The beautiful momma-to-be!
Rachel, me and Jessica! Love these girls!
Rachel, me and Jessica! Love these girls!
banana cake. mmmm
banana cake. mmmm

I am so excited for this boy to be born! A few hours with her and her family and friends was definitely not enough and I miss them so much. Love seeing my friends lives go in amazing directions, but it would be even better if we all lived closer! Seeing all the baby stuff gave me a little baby fever but not to have my own. I just want all my friends to have them so I can be the best Aunt!

I spent the rest of the afternoon with my dad and we met up for dinner with my brother at my favorite restaurant from my hometown, Harry Tuft’s. I wonder how many times I’ve wrote about them if I went back and looked through my entries! I ordered my favorite food OF ALL TIME that I haven’t eaten in at least a year if not two… chicken wings. Honey. Mustard. Chicken. WANGS.

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Besides the fact that chicken wings are terrible for you, they murder my stomach. I felt it was worth it… and somehow, someway they didn’t bother me too badly. I ate all but 1 and it was worth every bite. When I was about 5 years old, my dad videotaped me singing a song that I just kept yelling “I LOVE CHICKEN WINGS!” while dancing around. I am special. My brother and I went to hang out with some of his friends for awhile followed by watching It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia in bed eating guac and chips.

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I ended up with major knee pain from my treadmill run on Saturday, so bad that I really couldn’t walk on it without almost limping. Have I mentioned how much I HATE THIS WINTER and how it’s destroyed my running fitness?! I had to skip out on my 7 mile run and I really have no idea how I’m going to be ready to run a half marathon in less than a month. BLAH. I went down to visit John’s mom for a bit and played with her new Soda Stream! These things are so cool and of course I want one though I have no need for one. We made diet cola (a little flat tasting) and Country Time lemonade! The lemonade was awesome and way lower calorie and sugar than the real stuff.

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John drove back with me (his mom lives about 40 miles from my parents) and we went to Harry Tuft’s, again, with my brother. This time I had chicken spiedies, which in my opinion are the best in town. Have you ever heard of chicken spiedies? My hometown is where they originated from! It’s basically marinated chunks of chicken on a sub roll, but many places around the town compete for the best marinade. Tuft’s is my personal favorite, but Lupo’s is the most popular. Fun upstate New York facts 😉

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That little orange-ish cup is the honey mustard they use on their chicken wings and it’s to die for. The waitress loves me so she gave me a huge to-go cup of it for me to bring back to the city with me! You can’t really buy it in stores other than bulk restaurant stores but the brand is called Cattleman’s. It’s slightly spicy and more of a barbecue honey mustard. It’s just freaking amazing on everything.

We got back to the city really late Sunday night so yesterday was a miserably exhausting day. I was up bright and early this morning to teach my Tuesday morning spin class. I woke up feeling like complete crap because I’m getting a little sick, but I ended up having an amazing class! Always love when that happens. I’ll share my playlist with you guys tomorrow since this post is a little long! 🙂

Have you ever had a drastic hair cut? This is pretty drastic for me but it doesn’t feel like it! It just feels like I made the right decision!

What’s your favorite absolutely-terrible-for-you food? I’m talking the one that you only eat once a year, if that!

And let’s redeem ourselves… what’s your favorite super healthy food? I’d say broccoli. I LOVE steamed broccoli and can eat it completely and totally plain!

When Running Is Hard.

We’ll get into what to possibly do when running seems so hard in just a moment! (Why do I sound like I’m on TV?)

So after the half marathon Sunday which is utterly exhausting in and of itself, I went to work and then out to celebrate with John. We walked around for quite awhile after dinner and then I started to have an anxiety attack inside Trader Joe’s (I tend to have them when I’m overtired) so we knew it was bedtime for me! I am seriously an infant. I didn’t get much sleep and had to wake up at 4:45 AM to catch a 6:10 AM bus up to Binghamton for just a few hours to get my hair done. I got to Port Authority and found out that I stupidly booked both tickets LEAVING from Binghamton, not NYC. So I had to wait for 2 hours until the 8:00 bus left. Being exhausted and moody and sore and sweaty in Port Authority is probably the definition of hell on earth.

All was worth it though because I got to the salon where I love to go and was greeted with foils and wine.

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I don’t have an after picture right now but I went a lot blonder with some layers. If you are in the Binghamton area I highly recommend Friends & Company salon! If I travel 4 hours just to get my hair done, you KNOW it’s an amazing place.

I had just a minute to spare before I went right back so my brother and I went to get my favorite salad at Broadway Diner.

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Greek salad with grilled chicken, honey mustard on the side. The only thing missing was their french fries that are life changing but I figured I needed no more grease in my belly after the burger the night before.

It took me til today to feel caught up on sleep but it was well worth it!

So the other day on Facebook I saw this great quote posted from Competitor Running that I follow on there. It made all the sense in the world to why running seems difficult OFTEN to me lately, and I believe it’s from being a little too inconsistent and taking too many days off in between runs.

“I sometimes hear people say they don’t like running, but I think most people are never in good enough shape to really enjoy running. If you try to run consistently 30 days in a row — give or take a few days off during that span — there is something special that happens and all of a sudden you start feeling good and really enjoying it. But if you only run once or twice a week and are taking several days off, you’re always fighting getting in shape.” – Jenny Barringer Simpson

I would not suggest running 30 days in a row to anyone because you’re asking for an injury and for burn out, but I too often take 3-4 days off due to oversleeping and just plain laziness that my pace suffers and it feels like I can’t breathe well. This might not be the ONLY contributing factor, but I want to safely be able to run 5 days per week. This is also not just about pace but how I feel overall when running. There are definitely some days where a run feels incredible and “easy” but it isn’t often for me lately. I’ll admit my allergies have been the worst they’ve ever been for the last 6 months so breathing in general has not been easy, but I think I am also a tad bit lazy. I love sleep, what can I say!

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Of course you have to listen to your body and distinguish a real need for rest from just being lazy. This is where I fall short because by nature I am a lazy bum! No shame in my game. But consistency is really key in improving in anything, so of course this can be applied to any exercise!

So after this half marathon on Sunday, the rest of my races for the year are shorter except for a 15K in December. I want to run more days per week but keep them to 3-5 miles with a longer run on weekends, probably 8 or 9 miles max. I will also up my strength training and get back to Bikram yoga now that I won’t have to worry about severe soreness hindering a race 😉 Ready to switch it up!

How many days per week do you run or workout?