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Sunday, January 29, 2012

13.1 Miles: Training Week 5

Week 5 is D.O.N.E. and I can't believe we are already half-way through training for our half-marathon!

*What I've learned most from this experience so far:
  Running long distances really is mind over matter.  

If you would have told me a few months ago I could run 10 miles in one day, I would have looked at you like you had 3 heads.  Every week I surprise myself tackling 6, then 8, now 10 mile runs.  Next week is 12, which means we're almost in the home stretch.

I showed some progress in Training Week 4, but let's talk about how Week 5 went.

Day 17
Monday: January 23, 2012

Miles: 3
Time: 25:34
Speed: 7.0mi/h
Pace: 8:32min/mi

Post-Run Meal:

A big 'ol cup of coffee (mentioned first for importance), sided with a bowl of hot Grape Nuts topped with fresh strawberries, bananas and chia seeds.  Have you ever tried hot cereal? It leaves cold cereal in the dust for me.  Simply add 1/3 cup of milk (preferably skim) to 2 cups of Grape Nuts and heat in the microwave for 5 minutes.  Heaven.

Day 18
Wednesday: January 25, 2012

I was feeling Wednesday's run before it even started!
I tried Dance Trance for the first time Tuesday night (post coming soon), then went to Pilates Wednesday morning.  I guess you could say this was one of those runs I was not excited for since my legs felt like a mix between jello and rocks.  I don't know what that is...but that's what they felt like: weak and heavy.

For 5 miles, I wanted a 2.5 mile pick-me-up, so I took a Mango-Tangerine Drink Chia! with me.

Miles: 5
Time: 45:29
Speed: 6.6mi/h
Pace: 9:08min/mi

Post-Run Meal:

Since I ran later on in the day, it was time for dinner.  Scott made a loaded baked potato, and I was on my own to find something quick and healthy.  This included a sweet potato sprinkled with cinnamon, a Morning Star Spicy Black Bean Veggie Burger and a side of peas & carrots. 

Day 19
Thursday: January 26, 2012

I spent most of Thursday morning at the barre, and no my legs were not happy with me at this point.  I gave them a few hours to rest and waited to run in the sunset.

*TIP (and note to self): Cut back on work-out classes during training days.

I'll allow myself a barre class on Thursday mornings, but that's it from here on out while I'm training. 

Miles: 3
Time: 26:57
Speed: 6.6mi/h
Pace: 9:02min/mi

Post-Run Meal:

Call me crazy, but all I really wanted for dinner was a bagel.  I toasted a whole wheat one, spread all-natural peanut butter on it and drizzled it with a fresh, organic Mango flavored honey straight from the Orlando Farmer's Market.  Paired with a perfectly ripe banana, it sure hit the spot. 

Day 20
Saturday: January 28, 2012

Holy toledo, I ran 10 consecutive miles.  It was certainly a challenge, but it wasn't as hard as I expected it to be.  Scott ran right in front of me the whole time, took me on a new route around the neighborhood and the new scenery seemed to make the run go by quickly.

I mentioned last week that I wanted to try some GU products for my long distance runs.  Since then, I picked up a few packets of GU Gels from Vitamin Shoppe and took a Strawberry Banana pack at the 5 mile mark.  That little packet gave me the burst of energy I needed, and I won't be doing anything over 6 miles without some kind of mid-run energy source.

By the way, did you notice my "water bottle"?  My Drink Chia! proves to be the perfect bottle size to fill with water and carry through my runs.  

Miles: 10
Time: 1:29:42
Speed: 6.7mi/h
Pace: 8:58min/mi

Post-Run Meal:

Since I had been standing on my feet for 7 hours - in heels - working a booth at the PGA Merchandise Show, my feet were already barking before the 10 mile run.  After a hot bath, cozy pajamas and a plop down on the couch there was no hope of me moving to make dinner, or do anything for that matter.

Scott got +50 brownie points for running to Chick-fil-A to bring home two Chicken Tortilla soups for us.  It's times like these where I ignore all of the ridiculously embarrassing things he does and just adore him.  By the way...the soup, even without the tortilla strips - phenomenal.

What I've learned this week:
  • GU Gels or some type of mid-run pick me up is a huge help for my long run days.
  • Running with Scott forces me to pick up my pace by at least :30.  Apparently he's Forrest Gump.

  • Week 5 of training for a half-marathon may not be the best time to try out a series of new workout classes.  I'll be looking forward to going back and trying more once the race is over.
Goals for next week:

By some GU Chomps for next weekend's run.
Get through 12 miles at 1:45:00.  My goal for the entire half is to finish in 2 hours.  My 10 mile run hit right around 1:30:00 (thanks to Scott pushing me).  If I get this goal of 12 in 1:45 I should be right on track to finish the race under 2 hours.

Training Week 5 Playlist coming soon... :)

Friday, January 27, 2012


Wednesday night Scott and I went to the Back9Network's Launch Party.  We got invited by a friend and thought it would be great to finally check out ICEBAR Orlando.  That...we certainly did.


If you've never been to an ICEBAR before, it's definitely something worth checking out.  Beyond the ice, there's a regular temperature bar with seating and a large dance floor area.  Check out the virtual 360 degree inside tour.

The coats you see in the tour outline the actual ICEBAR, which is an extremely chilly 20 degrees, made entirely from ice.  Tables, chairs, decorations and even cups were stone cold.

Don't worry: you don't have to wear a parka here...
They provide one for you.

Or at least a version of that...

The event was great, and we are excited to see what the Back 9 Network is all about.  Look out for it airing in the near future.

There was a variety of talent there and The Voice 2011 Winner Javier Colon kicked off the party off.  Al B. Sure! and Flava Flav joined in and the crowd enjoyed their renditions of "There Goes My Baby."

Here's a talent highlight video:

Contrary to what most people might think about the bar and location, I think this venue would be a great place for tourists AND locals to go out.

International Drive used to scream the word tourist to me, but Scott and I have been enjoying dinners, movies and outings in the area lately.  You're okay, I-Drive.

I'm sure we'll be back to the ICEBAR soon.
We've got a Groupon to use :)

Check it.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

How To: Budget Beauty Pampering

There's tons of DIY tips & tricks on beauty out there, especially since Pinterest came along.  Although I don't do everything myself, I've figured out some pampering pointers to help you stay on a beauty routine budget.

*The biggest tip I can give is to spread out when you have your services/treatments done.  Although it might be easier to have a "you" day, get yourself on a schedule where you switch out the extra spending.

1st week of the month - spray tan/products + eyebrows
2nd week of the month - toes/nails
3rd week of the month - massage + eyebrows (if needed)
4th week of the month - hair color, treatment or facial

Below, I've outlined 5 ways to budget my favorite beauty services:

1. Manis/Pedis
There's nothing I enjoyed better after a long hard day at my serving job than treating myself to a pedicure.  These days, Scott and I both are in need of them with all of the running we're doing, so I've been skipping the manicures.

To make nails/toes fit in your budget:
Stick to the basics.  Go for the standard (or basic) pedicure, which usually lasts about 30 minutes for under $30.  French polish is usually an additional $5, so when you get there opt for the first color you're drawn to.  Instead of going every 2 weeks, treat yourself once or month or once every six weeks, kind of like getting your hair done.

2. Massages/Facials
The health benefits of a full body massage are often overlooked.  Going in to relax is an obvious one, but loosening up muscles, helping circulation and releasing toxins are even better ones.

*TIP: When scheduling a massage, be sure to include what you're looking for.  Tell them what kind of pressure you need, and if you have areas you need extra time spent.

Massages and facials can be extremely expensive, especially at high end hotels or salons & spas.  If you can't justify spending money on either ask for them as a Holiday, Anniversay or Birthday gift.  That's the only time I get facials, and instead focus more on working out the muscles in my body.

To fit massages into your budget:
Look for companies that specialize in massage services.  They tend to run specials and affordable monthly memberships.  Both Scott and I are members of Massage Envy, paying $40 each a month, which includes a massage and $40 for each additional one.  Whatever we don't use rolls over into the next month, and you can go to any location all over the country! 

3. Eyebrows
I am a huge advocate for eyebrow maintenance and I'm the last person to want to shape my own.  I've been getting my eyebrows threaded since college and haven't really turned back.  If you don't have threading near you, try to shop around for an affordable place that does waxing.

To make sure you get your eyebrows in:
Really do some research.  It may be convenient to get your brows done at your hair salon, but know that good eyebrow shaping can be found other places.  Try out different shops and see where getting yours done makes the most sense.  When I wasn't getting threaded (which only costs $9), I had a few friends in the field that offered to do mine at a discount.

Also, try tweezing the strays between waxing/threading.  You can extend the need to go a week or so with a little at-home grooming.

*TIP: While grooming at home, keep the shape the professional started and only grab the strays.

4. Spray Tans/Products
I haven't gone into this yet on my blog, but I am an avid artificial tanner... and no, I don't mean going to "fake bake."  Tanning beds are horrible for your skin, not to mention your health.  If you care to have an extra glow or need to darken up for a light outfit, get a spray tan or invest in your own personal line of tanning products.

To save on a spray:
Leave the $30 a spray tan for only a few times a year.  In between those "sprays" I lean on my Loreal Sublime.

This stuff is a Godsend.  It comes in all types of shades, as well as an Instant Action intense color and when I found out about it a few years back, I swore I would never visit a tanning bed again.

The darkest "self-spray tan" I've seen is Sunbrushed, and it's a liquid solution you wipe on with a wash cloth.

 I'll go into all of my favorites DIY tans in another post, but for now know there's other alternatives out there.

*TIP: Love these products? Order online from sites like for a fraction of the price!  

5.  Hair coloring/Treatments/Products
If there's one beauty regime I know I'll be stuck with for the rest of my life, it's hair coloring.  I just don't see myself in the mousey-brown hue I was born with.  With coloring, comes a much needed Hair Care & Products routine to keep your locks healthy.

To avoid spending your paycheck at the hair salon:
Invest in quality hair products, but don't get them all at once.  Aim to spread out re-stocking your products between a few months, or even a year.  Every time I get my hair done I am tempted to buy the new "it" product my stylist shows me.
Don't do it.

Take time to research, or even ask your stylist what you really need.  Get on a product line that works best for your hair and only by a product at a time.  Eventually, you will get everything and the products will usually run out in the same order you purchased them.

I hope these tips help you to plan out your beauty days and budget.  If you have any questions, comments or additional tips feel free to comment below or message me personally.

Happy Pampering! :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Training Week 4 Playlist

This Training Week flew by with a heck of a finale run.  Every week my mileage increases by two and this time I had a challenge of creating a playlist to last right under an hour and a half.

Just for fun (and in honor of my battle to get over the sniffles)... I had to include at least 2 songs for why I got them in the first place: running in the *rain*.

Get ready to channel some 80's favs... 
I had to dig a little deep for this one! ;)

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