HI! (Lots of pics)

Well now that 2017 is nearly over, I thought it would be a good idea to make a blogging come back. Better late than never, right? I don’t even know how it’s possible that it is SEPTEMBER but here we are.

2017 has been so weird. Like, to say the least. It’s been awesome, hard, scary, exciting, and I have grown a lot. As usual, I’m gonna play a quick game of catch up here and then *try* to blog here and there. I think blogging has kind of taken a back seat to Instagram/social media in general but I do still enjoy reading a few when I get a chance to (i.e. never).

Like I said, 2017 has been weird. I’ll assume you know what I mean for the MOST part. January was a time for standing up for our rights. Not just for women.

February/March was cold weather training for the NYC Half Marathon with Andrea and Patty. It was so fun to meet up every weekend either in NJ or NY and then usually get brunch after! We had some COLD ones!

The NYC half was in late March and it was my first half in 3 years! I only really trained with the long runs once a week since I still teach so much spin and we finished feeling pretty rough, but it was a super cold day and so windy. This race is not worth $130 if you live in NYC- if you are from out of town, I’d say it’s probably worth it.

John and I went to Miami for our birthdays in early April and had an amazing long weekend! I am obsessed with Miami. The hot weather, the beautiful ocean, and the food is incredible. It’s a perfect getaway from NY (2.5 hour flight).

YARDBIRD. Sooo good

The bestttt donuts from Salty Donut

Who we truly are 😉

Wynwood Diner is amazing! We went 2x

Andrea, Brenda and I ran the Binghamton Half Marathon in May and it was TERRIBLE! It was freezing and none of us were feeling it. We finished, but it wasn’t pretty.

End of May we left for our first Europe trip to PARIS! We found an amazing deal back in February to fly on IcelandAir so we took advantage.

Iceland airport!
breakfast area of our hotel in Paris
small hotel lobby!
first meal in Paris! salmon eggs benny (same thing i get in the US haha)

1st dinner on the 1st night- we accidentally went to a chain restaurant that is like the Paris equivalent of TGI Fridays haha
free hotel breakfast!

The Louvre!

Versaille!
haha yes we got McDs in paris!!

best crepes ever!

last dinner!

Paris was absolutely the highlight of this year. It was more than I ever imagined it to be!

I am still teaching for New York Sports Club and Harlem Cycle, and I also began teaching at a studio 1 block away from me called Push Pedal! It’s the only cycling studio in Washington Heights and it’s been so fun (and convenient) to help start another studio from the ground up!

The other highlight of this year is that John and I moved into our very own NYC apartment! We have lived in 1 room of a 2 bedroom apartment with the same roommate for 6.5 years. It was awesome and saved us all a lot of money but it was definitely time for us to branch out on our own! We moved in July 1st and it’s been crazy! We moved just 1 block away from where we had lived but the space is big and needed to be painted, and with the limited amount of time we have at home, we still are not done. We should be done in the next few weeks and then our housewarming party is the 30th! We did have a little floor picnic with friends last month because we were dying to host 🙂

That pretty much sums up most of 2017 so far for me: travel, moving, food, lots of spin and some running.

What has your year looked like?

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Monday.

Happy Thanksgiving-week guys! Hopefully today is more like your Wednesday if you have Thursday and Friday off. Sometimes short weeks can feel longer than normal weeks but let’s keep trucking! Recap of last week…

Monday

Taught 3 classes (6:45 AM, 5:45 PM and 6:45 PM). I am not on the bike the whole time for any of my classes anymore and my body has benefited so much. Would you ever take 3 spin classes in a day? I don’t know anyone who would, so why would an instructor do it? I feel a lot stronger teaching off the bike these days which took years! However 3 in a day is still a lot since I still have over 8 hours of work sandwiched between them.

Tuesday

Taught another unexpected triple! I taught my normal 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM but helped out last minute for the 6:00 PM too. I had wanted to get in a treadmill run before my PM class but couldn’t when I picked up the 6 PM.

Wednesday

Taught my 6:30 AM class at Harlem Cycle and it was a great crowd! I subbed out my 6:00 PM class and was going to go to bootcamp and get my own workout in but was absolutely exhausted after 7 classes in 3 days. I went home and relaxed in bed which was so necessary.

Thursday

Taught my 6:30 AM class and rode for most of it to get my workout in. John and I had dinner plans with our roommate after work so it was my only chance to sweat. We have lived with our roommate for almost 6 years (it isn’t unusual in NYC to have a roomie when you are in a couple, hello most expensive rent ever) but we don’t get to hang out often because of our schedules. She wasn’t able to come to our wedding because she was out of the country for work so she treated to us a delicious Italian dinner at a place in our ‘hood I had never been to called Saggio. A little gem way uptown! We had the best calamari ever to start.

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Then I had the squid ink linguine with grilled calamari (obsessed with it) in a spicy tomato sauce.

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And had a totally unnecessary piece of tiramisu to cap it off.

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Sorry for horrible pics, it was very dark inside and too small to blind people with the flash!

Friday

Taught my 6:30 AM class at Harlem Cycle (#FriYaY) and subbed a 6:15 PM class. My legs were pretty much not working at this point as this was class #9 and #10 for the week. John and I went to a new pizza place after class that replaced our beloved Patsy’s a few months ago. Since I started eating more paleo-ish before my wedding, my craving for pizza has gone down soooo much. If you know me, you know that you never saw that day coming. I can’t eat an entire (cheese-less) pizza to myself anymore! It’s in the same exact spot but under new ownership and a new name- Zia Maria. Happy to report it was AMAZING! Didn’t get a pic but it was absolutely delicious. So happy to have a replacement pizza joint back in our lives.

Saturday

Sweet, sweet REST! I had to work all day and I treated myself to a mani/pedi after. Then I headed to a Friendsgiving! A girl that I love that comes to my classes invited me to her place for a feast and it was great. Always fun to meet new people! John made me green bean casserole to take with me since I was at work all day. He is the best wife husband 🙂

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SUNDAY

Brenda met me for a 2 mile run/walk and then took my spin class I was subbing at 10 AM. The run was horrible- it was the first absolutely freezing day of the year (colder than the 10K I ran last weekend) and the wind was insane. I wanted to get 4-5 miles in to keep this distance shape I sort of built but oh well! We had brunch after class and then I went home and stayed on the couch for a solid 7 hours with John watching movies and staying away from winter. After 28 winters you would think I would be used to it…

Here’s my workout plan for this week which includes traveling!

Today- Taught spin and heading to Barry’s Bootcamp tonight after finishing some work (have my usual class covered tonight)

Tuesday- teaching 3 classes, trying to get a 2-3 mile run in before my AM class

Wednesday- teaching spin and a 2-3 mile run

Thursday- 5 mile turkey trot! And a long walk after dinner is always essential

Friday- Trying out my first Orange Theory class up in Rochester!

Saturday- Planning to hit up a spin class and BodyPump class at the YMCA in Rochester! #GuestPass 😉

Sunday- Rest day, maybe a hot yoga class in Binghamton before heading back to the city

What are your workout plans for this busy week?

Costa Rica Part 2: La Fortuna & Wedding

Thank you all so much for the sweet comments on my wonderful engagement news post! We are so excited and I am quite overwhelmed (in a good way) at how much goes into planning a wedding on a very little budget 😉 I will definitely be posting about it as we do this once I get caught up on this recap of Costa Rica! Read part one here.

I left off when we were leaving the first resort and driving to the second resort, Hotel Mountain Paradise in La Fortuna which is close to a 4 hour drive from Guanacaste. Keep in mind, the speed limit is MUCH slower than in the U.S. so the entire trip was only about 90-100 miles but took much longer than it would here. I was exhausted from laying on the beach all morning (tough life) so I slept most of the trip until we reached sight of the volcano!

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This resort felt like we were staying at someone’s cabin. It was an adorable little community-type resort where all the rooms were in house/cabin’s. I don’t know how I forgot to get a picture of the inside, but the rooms are so cool. They are HUGE with crazy high ceilings and bathrooms bigger than my room in my apartment. If you go to their website you can look at the inside of the different suites.

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Our view from the back patio of our cabin:

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The pool area:

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Once we napped a bit and took showers, we headed out to a local restaurant for some authentic food!

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Their little restaurants are called “sodas” and the food is so amazing and SO CHEAP. For all 11 of us, our bill was just over $100 including beers and drinks.

Our first full day at the second resort was extremely rainy and chilly, so we made the best of it by going straight to the rain forest and hiking it! It was a pretty amazing experience to say the least. The pictures do not do it justice. We had to ride a super old school bus up and into the starting point to hike, and the ride alone was the most adventurous thing I had ever done! (Clearly a city girl here)

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hanging bridge!
hanging bridge!
The hiking crew minus Tyler taking the pic! :)
The hiking crew minus Tyler taking the pic! 🙂

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Not sure if I mentioned this in my first recap but Costa Rica had coke “light” instead of diet coke and it was UNREAL. The best thing I’ve ever tasted. I literally only crave diet soda right after a sweaty workout (I don’t always give in, artificial sweetener police.) and so after hours of hiking this was the best reward ever along with salty plantain chips.

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We had a quick lunch in town and bought more wine for the wedding. I don’t have a picture but John and his mom ordered hamburgers and it came out a burger with literally ham on top of it. It was hysterical at the time, and I am actually dying laughing thinking about it now.

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After an amazing shower and some resting, we all met up again for the night before the wedding dinner. It wasn’t exactly a rehearsal dinner since Kate and Tyler didn’t get to see the venue beforehand (they just had to trust their wedding planner who was ABSOLUTELY amazing) but it was nice to get both of the families together before the wedding. They set up a super special dinner fort us at a restaurant way up on this hill that overlooked the town and was very quiet. Sadly I can’t think of the name at the moment (since it’s been 2 months now!) but it was really special!

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AMAZING salsa with plantain chips as an app
AMAZING salsa with plantain chips as an app
The beautiful bride & groom!
The beautiful bride & groom!
I had to wear glasses almost everywhere because of my allergies. Ugh.
I had to wear glasses almost everywhere because of my allergies. Ugh.

 

Cheers to family!
Cheers to family!

Saturday was John’s sister’s wedding day! After breakfast, I laid out by the pool by myself for a few hours since it was the only sunny day at that part of the trip. It was gorgeous!

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Then we headed to Kate’s room to get ready for the wedding. She gave us these gorgeous silk robes to get ready in while we did our hair and make up and had John take our pictures.

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It had rained for most of the afternoon really hard and just as it was time to go to the wedding, it cleared up! Woo! The wedding was held at one of the resort’s restaurants that was half inside, half outside.

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The ceremony was nice and short and then we ate and drank!

Fruity salad starter
Fruity salad starter
AMAZING tropical pork. Best meal I ate the whole trip!
AMAZING tropical pork. Best meal I ate the whole trip!
Very light, whipped cheesecake for dessert
Very light, whipped cheesecake for dessert
Cuban cigars for gifts and Japanese fans (not pictured)
Cuban cigars for gifts and Japanese fans (not pictured)

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Thanks to Kate & Tyler for planning an awesome trip and wedding!

The next morning was our last breakfast together and we said our goodbyes to the awesome waitstaff, especially this guy!

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John, his mom and I had a long trip back towards the airport so we had a driver take us back who was awesome and let us make a few stops along the way. First stop was this awesome place we kept seeing a million signs for called Toad Hall. It’s a tourist place where you can eat and get souvenirs and also stay. We saw this cool bird, got some coffee and gifts and a fresh coconut off the street to drink from!

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SO beautiful!
SO beautiful!

Once we got back near the airport, we checked into the Hilton that was a stone’s throw from the airport. It was our last night to just relax and unwind, so we had a delicious lunch then followed it up with some pool time.

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fish taco burrito, mmmm
fish taco burrito, mmmm

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Once the sun went down, we were absolutely exhausted so we went back to our room and just got pizza for dinner. Pizza Hut’s cheeseless pizza for me!

Can't go anywhere without my pizza.
Can’t go anywhere without my pizza.

Our flight the next morning wasn’t until the afternoon so me and John’s mom caught a few hours of pool time before packing up.

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John and I hit up the last breakfast buffet and ate until we couldn’t move.

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Best trip of my life. I WILL be back for you, Costa Rica. Next up: Cancun, Mexico in 2 weeks with my FIANCE! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Bahhhhston!

My week vacation is now over but I will continue to drool over the pictures of the food I ate in Boston. Ya’ll know I LOVE to eat and Boston definitely didn’t disappoint! Since John and I couldn’t afford a tropical getaway just yet, we figured a few days with our friend Mark in Boston would be a good way to spend some of our week off together! I was born in Cape Cod but never went to Boston so I was super excited to see a new big city.

We caught the 10:00 AM bus way the heck over on the very west side of Manhattan. This was our first time riding the real Megabus that’s actually a double decker bus and I was weirdly excited. Trust me, when you have to travel by bus to see your family and it’s the grossest bus ever, you’d get a little excited for the promise of a better bus too.

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We sat on the top deck and I’d have to advise others not to do this. Unless you like roasting to death, which I do not. It was SO HOT up there and this was without the heat being on. Add on being stuck in traffic for an extra hour and I’d say John probably wishes he had been run over by the bus. 😀

We finally made it to Boston and immediately headed to Quincy Market for food.

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I felt like such a tourist and loved it. You don’t get those fun holiday feelings after living in New York City and wanting to start fights everywhere you go. Ha!

There is a ton of food options inside, but we had to go with some classic clam chowdah in a bread bowl!

Mark and I! Best buddies since 6th grade
Mark and I! Best buddies since 6th grade

chowda

mmmm
mmmm

Demolished. We walked around the area for awhile and went into some of the shops to look around. It’s really beautiful at night especially with the holiday decorations up.

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We made our way back to Mark’s apartment who also lives with another friend from high school named Lauren. So fun to see people that I love but never get to hang out with! They took us to their favorite restaurant in their neighborhood where another one of my good friends from high school met us, too! Reunions!

Matty P!
Matty P!

The restaurant is called The Publick House and it goes down as one of the best places for bar type food EVER. If you are super into beers, this is the spot for you. I ordered a super loaded grilled chicken sandwich with fries but nixed the bun considering I ate an entire loaf of bread at lunch. YOLO.

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The grilled chicken itself was freaking amazing but topped with blue cheese, bacon and avocado?! Get out. I dipped the fries in their recommended beer mustard which was also delicious. Everyone else at the table absolutely loved their food too.

After dinner Mark took John and I out to a hilarious karaoke club. I had a few glasses of wine prior to this, but the buzz was wearing off and I wanted no more alcohol at all. Needless to say, I did sober karaoke and while it was still fun- it’s definitely more fun drunk. We still put on a great performance in my opinion.

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We sang All Cried Out by Allure and I was told multiple times I have a hilariously awful voice. Thank you?

With barely 4 hours of sleep and a bad cold setting in later, I decided to get a short run in just to say I ran in Boston 😉 Better motivation than none, right? It had warmed up a little and I knew the boys would be sleeping for awhile longer so I went out and ran 2.5 miles. They were GOD AWFUL. My chest is super congested and there will killer hills, but the morning was beautiful and it always feels good to move.

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so weird to me that the subway tracks are just on the road?
so weird to me that the subway tracks are just on the road?

Once everyone was showered and dressed, we set out for bloody mary’s and brunch. I kept mine virgin and it was still completely delicious and so spicy. Made my sinuses clear right up!

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drink

Brunch was at Zaftigs, a famous Jewish deli. Please go here if you are visiting Boston! Super cool inside with a great menu. I went with a basic egg, toast and potato breakfast like I always do. They also bring you out bagel chips and cream cheese to start.

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The challah toast was amazing, a lot like potato bread which is pretty much my favorite. John had the biggest piece of french toast stuffed with sauteed bananas (ridiculous) and Mark had a fried egg and cheese BLT on challah. All so good. Is there anything better than breakfast food? There simply is not.

After a little shopping on Newbury Street, we had to head back to our home- New York City. Boston was fun and delicious, but NYC is definitely where my heart is!

Have you ever been to Boston? Do you like it better than NYC or no? Not meant to start a battle, I think Boston is better in some ways than NYC. For example, people are more calm and there is just less people which is a good thing 😉