Thursday, December 27, 2012

Year in Review 2012

Wow, that was a lot of dead air, huh? But I wouldn't let the year slip away entirely without my Year In Review post. It was kind of crazy when I opened up last year's and read stuff about moving, because it feels like that was SO long ago already. And now we're getting ready to move again!

1. What did you do in 2012 that you'd never done before? Ran a half marathon! Deadlifted more than my bodyweight! Bought a single family home!

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I got my 500 Mile t-shirt! I didn't win the fitness award, but I'm trying again this year and am way ahead of where I was at this point last year. My goals for next year are to lose body fat, especially on my thighs! Going for below 18% and an inch off each thigh. And to get some money back into savings, since I've been used to having a large cushion for several years.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? Alyssa (our niece Olivia), Carly (Sonya), Amber (Chloe), Emily (Charlotte), and Sarah (Kyle). The girls are still outnumbering the guys by a good margin!

4. Did anyone close to you die? I don't think so

5. What countries did you visit? Mexico, Jamaica, and Bermuda, and Haiti for the third time.

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012? HOT TUB

7. What date from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? Bought our house on December 10th! And I got my new job offer just three days before that. It was a crazy weekend :-)

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? New job, finally! It only took a year...

9. What was your biggest failure? Relatively minor, but I kind of sucked hard at my first yoga teacher attempt. I hope I'll get better.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? I think I was injury and illness free this year (knock on wood, as there's still 5 days left...)

11. What was the best thing you bought? We bought a house!

12. Whose behavior merited celebration? I really appreciated our realtor not questioning decisions we had already made for ourselves, such as how much house we could afford, getting a 15 year mortgage, and the fact that we didn't care about school districts.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? The vocal part of the GOP, particularly the vocal evangelical christian part

14. Where did most of your money go? We wrote a check equal to 2/3 of my salary to close on the house.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Three-point-five vacations! Long weekend in Annapolis in March, OBX in June, cruises over Labor Day and Veterans Day.

16. What song will always remind you of 2012? 'Some Nights' by fun.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? happier!
ii. thinner or fatter? slightly fatter
iii. richer or poorer? richer!

18. What do you wish you'd done more of? Cardio. I slacked off there after my birthday race, and that's when the weight started to come back on.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of? Sharing walls with neighbors. Soooooon....

20. How will you be spending Christmas? We went to my mom's for Olivia's first xmas - I think she was a little overwhelmed. Awesome food as always, though.

21. How will you be spending New Year's Eve? Same same with Matt's fam in NoVa - it's the one event we can count on them well in advance to plan and execute

22. Did you discover any great new websites in 2012? Fitness Black Book

23. How many weddings? Three, all local and well spaced (thanks guys!) - Mike and Katherine in March, Tito and Kelly in August, and Matt and Lawrie in November

24. What was your favorite TV program? The Voice and Next Food Network Star were both fall favorites this year

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year? Parents who let their child scream endlessly

26. What was the best book you read? 'How Yoga Works' was pretty neat.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery? Avett Brothers, The Head and the Heart, fun

28. What did you want and get? A paid off car! And though I didn't think it was coming for a long time, a house! And also Rosetta Stone Italian so we can start learning the language for our Mediterranean cruise in a few more years :-)

30. What was your favorite film of this year? Argo

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? 3.1 for 31! Eight people joined me for the Leesburg 5K, and then we ate cupcakes! And then we went out to dinner with friends at Don Pablos again, where they again made me wear the giant sombrero (and gave me free sopapillas).

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Getting my new job in August instead of December

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012? Same as always - business casual during the week, gym clothes in the evening, casual on the weekends.

34. What kept you sane? Meeting short term goals

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Adam Levine, but I wish he'd get some of his tattoos removed :-)

36. What political issue stirred you the most? Old white men attempting to legislate women's health issues

37. Who did you miss? Jim! Come back from California plz. I'm putting a gym in my new basement...

38. Who were the best new people you met? Kelly, Abby, Chris, Sonja and Roberta in my teacher training group!

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012: Run ALL the numbers. I didn't realize until I did all the math that buying a house now with 10% down (and paying a little PMI) still had a lower total cost than buying the same house 3 years from now with 20% down, when interest rates and housing prices pretty much have no where to go but up.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year: "Our house is a very, very fine house with two cats in the yard, life used to be so hard, Now everything is easy cause of you" - CSNY

(8 years and counting! YIR 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Wine dinners #1 and #2

Wine dinner #1: Benziger Family Winery (Sonoma, CA), April 17th

Course 1: Hors d'oeuvres reception, paired with sauvignon blanc
Course 2: Tomato and crab salad over mesclun greens, paired with chardonnay
Course 3: Almond crusted sea bass over spinach, paired with pinot noir
Course 4: Filet mignon, mushroom sauce and garlic mashed potatoes, paired with cabernet
Course 5: Chocolate cake and pot de creme, paired with syrah

Wine dinner #2: Banfi Vintner (Italian imports), June 12th

Course 1: Antipasto platter, paired with garganega
Course 2: Wild mushroom risotto, paired with sangiovese
Course 3: Veal osso bucco ravioli, paired with chianti
Course 4: Venison chop, blackberry sauce, broiled tomato, potatoes lyonnaise, paired with amarone
Course 5: Chocolate sin cake and raspberry sorbet, paired with sparkling rose

Sunday, June 03, 2012

How is it June already?

In three weeks I'll be eating a corndog at Capt'n Franks in OBX!

Until then, I've still got plenty of work to do. Pre-vacation daily planks start today, oof. 11 more yoga classes, 8 or 9 runs (including the Twilight 4-Miler on Saturday), 6 lifting sessions, and 5 dates with Jillian Michaels.

I can do NINE chinups (3 sets of 3) and almost 1 full pull-up. I think I'll get that one down this week.

Also coming up before the beach: Skinners' going away party today, Matt's cousin's HS graduation, Game Night, another wine dinner at Ruth's Chris, Robyn and Derrick and Elise, our 9 year anniversary, and a wedding shower for Kelly.

And then BEACH. I already have a spa afternoon planned with a pedicure, signature body wrap, and signature facial on the calendar. We're going to have seafood night at Captain George's this year, and M and I will probably go to Tail of the Whale again as well. This year's movie is MIB:III. I plan to rotate my two Jillian DVDs, and run a bit as the weather allows.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Switching Up

I've got a random workout schedule next week while on travel, a couple short runs and whatever I feel like doing in the hotel gym basically. Probably three full rest days (1 during the week and then Friday/Saturday before the race). Next Sunday is the half marathon, and then new workout schedule, Yay! And dropping cals to lose a little more weight, boo.

There's so much I want to be doing and it feels like there's not enough time to get it all in without overtraining - running, lifting, abs, glutes, arms, ballet, yoga...

So here's my planned schedule from post-race in May through my birthday 10K race:

Monday - Ashtanga yoga, sprint intervals
Tuesday - abs, A lift (squats), HIIT/LISS
Wednesday - speed run, arms/abs
Thursday - Flow 1, Jillian Michaels DVD (ballet starting in July)
Friday - abs, B lift (deads), HIIT/LISS
Saturday - Vinyasa or ashtanga yoga, distance run
Sunday - abs, C lift (press), HIIT/LISS, yin/restorative yoga

The pre-lifting abs consists of 5 sets of 20 leg lifts, 1 minute bridge, 2 min plank and 1 min each side plank. The arms/abs focus includes the leg lifts and bridge, a slightly longer plank workout, my pushups and pullups apps, and the fun new 'renegade rows' I learned about last week.

Speed runs will be at the 9:35 pace I need to meet my 10K goal, starting at 2 miles and building each week. Distance runs are just to maintain the 10K distance. HIIT on the treadmill or stationary bike, LISS on the elliptical with a glute focus.

Going to look awesome for vacations this year!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Want. Very want.

Putting this out there for posterity - THIS is my body ideal:

Her name is Nicole Wilkins-Lee and she's awesome. And I think attainable.

Friday, April 20, 2012


I got the Nike+ setup for Christmas 2008 (the iPod touch was my Christmas/graduation gift from M and I bought the sensor shortly after) and logged my first run on January 3rd, 2009. It was 1.55 miles and it took me almost 22 minutes. Which when you do the math, is slower than a 14 minute mile.

Since then, I have logged 155 runs for a total of 92 hours and 20 minutes, burned an estimated 49,600 calories while running, and with today's 11! Mile! Run! I have logged 500.12 miles!

Yay 500 mile t-shirt! My legs are killing me now. I was glad there are handicap bars in our shower. It will be worse in two weeks...

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Crazy go nuts!!

OBX June 24-July 1
Western Caribbean cruise (Mexico/Jamaica/Haiti) November 10-17

And now...

Bermuda cruise August 31-September 6!!! With Phil and Stacy and hopefully others!!!


Dang, the national FLC meeting is in like 10 days! And then Matt and Lawrie's engagement party! And then high tea with Erin! And then the half-marathon! And then murder mystery party! And then McHughs! Griffiths! Another race! Bauers! 9-year anniversary! Beach! Tito and Kelly's wedding! ANOTHER race!

I'm pretty sure I've never used so many exclamation points in one post! Life is indeed good :-)

(Wine pairing dinner at Ruth's Chris was amazeballs. We will DEFINITELY be doing that again!)

Sunday, April 01, 2012

April Fools

I never do anything 'good' for April Fools Day. But, happy birthday mom! (And that's no foolin')

Last weekend we went to Annapolis for a mini-vacation/getaway. We left on Thursday afternoon, checked into our hotel (procured with a Living Social deal) and hung out for a little while before it was time to leave for dinner. We ate at Rams Head Tavern - pretty tasty. Then we went over next door to the club to see Marrakesh Express, an awesome CSNY tribute band. A lot of fun! I had an ice cream float during the concert, and M had a couple of their brewery stouts.

Friday we slept in, went to Boston Market for lunch, and then went to downtown Annapolis. Visited the statehouse and walked around for a couple hours. Headed back to the hotel and watched our free in-room movie ('Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy') and went to the pool and hot tub for a while. Friday night we went to Cadillac Ranch for dinner, and then to Paladar Latin Kitchen for rum flights and churros - yum!

Saturday evening we got together with Carly, Eric, Mark and Amanda and played Carcassone; Sunday we went for sushi with MG and Lawrie (and DQ blizzards afterward). Finally found a sushi place that is both yummy AND affordable!

My new boss started this week, so my work schedule should be a little better now (I only have 1 extra hour on my timecard so far instead of 3-4).

We went to Mike and Katherine's wedding yesterday (#1 of 3 this year) and had a great time. Next one is in August. Today I ran 9 miles and went to yin yoga class. Only 5 weeks until the half marathon!

I actually ended up starting my new lifting plan last Tuesday. I like it! But I changed my rest time from 60 sec to 75 after the first day. And I need to not push myself too much on my supporting lifts (I could not do a 35lb dumbbell snatch right after my bench press, for example). Had a pretty mad case of DOMS after lunges on Friday, so I must be doing something right. I'll just rotate the three lifts on my two weekly lifting days until after the race when I can go to three lifting days a week.

Happy Spring! Easter is next weekend and fam is coming. I have Olivia's Easter basket all picked out :-)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Lifting geek

So I started New Rules of Lifting for Women back in September. Did a way extended stage 1 (14 weeks, normally 8 weeks) and then 5 weeks each for stages 2 and 3 instead of 4 weeks. I'm really jonesing to start the lifting program I designed myself though. So, executive decision! I'm only going to do 3 weeks on stage 4 and 2 weeks on stage 5, and then start my own lifting schedule 3x a week right after the half marathon (when I don't have to run 4x a week).

I still kept most of the principles from NROLW in creating my own plan - open with a big compound move, then alternate either a "push" or a "pull" with a leg exercise. I basically took my favorite exercises from NR and threw out what I didn't like. I added alternating sets of an ab and a targeted arm exercise at the end, because those are my vanity areas :-)

So here are my three workouts. Everything is 3 sets of 6 reps unless noted, and the lifting is followed by 20 minutes of LISS (low-intensity steady state) cardio, HR 60-70% of my max (the "fat-burning zone").

Workout A
Barbell Squat in straight sets
Alternate sets of Bench Press and Step Ups
Alternate sets of Overhand Lat Pulldown and Dumbbell Snatch
Alternate sets of Lateral Raises and Russian Twist (15 reps)

Workout B
Barbell Deadlift in straight sets
Alternate sets of Dumbbell Shoulder Press and One-Leg Squat
Alternate sets of Underhand Pulldown and Lunges
Alternate sets of Barbell Curl and Knee Raise (15 reps)

Workout C
Front Squat/Push Press combo in straight sets
Alternate sets of Romanian Deadlift and Pushups (10 reps)
Alternate sets of Sumo Squat and Barbell Row
Alternate sets of Bench Dip and Bicycle Crunch (15 reps)

I'll be dropping running to 2x a week after the half marathon - one speed run on the treadmill where I'll run at the 9:30 mile pace and gradually increase the distance to the full 10K, and one distance run where I'll just run the full 10K. After the 10K in August that I hopefully complete in under an hour, I'll drop scheduled running for a while and focus pretty much entirely on fat-burning LISS cardio with a small amount of HIIT thrown in. Diet-wise I plan to alternate 6 weeks of deficit (200-300 calories a day) with 2 weeks of eating at or slightly above maintenance for three cycles between May and October. The two week periods of maintenance eating conveniently happen to encompass our OBX vacation and my birthday ;-)

42 days until the half marathon and new plan implementation!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leaping Lizards!

Okay, so I got lapped, but at least I didn't get monthed. Thanks, leap year!

Work has been nuts. Will be that way for about another 4 weeks. I have a niece! Her name is Olivia and she's 6 weeks old now. I'm training for the half marathon! I also signed up for a 4-miler in June and a 10K in August. But my left shin has been sore recently. Still doing yoga, still picking up heavy things and putting them back down. Getting progressively more angry with the current GOP candidates. Eagerly awaiting the extra hour of daylight in the evenings, but not looking forward to losing the actual hour in two weeks.

Monday, January 09, 2012

No winner, no winner, no chicken dinner

I was hoping to win a fitness award at work for the most hours of "other activities" logged in 2011. Wasn't even close. 3rd place winner had 350 hours logged; I had 310. So my additional goal for 2012 is to average at least 1 hour per day in "other activities" - which for me right now include yoga, weight lifting, calisthenics, and elliptical HIIT. So far so good with 12 hours logged in 9 days!

Sunday, January 01, 2012

New Years MMXII

Gee, I'm not sure I would have known it was New Year's if all 542 of my Facebook friends hadn't posted about it...

Bought myself a new Polar heart rate monitor! I have to recalibrate it though...apparently doing the calibration and then going for a 5 mile run the day after a lifting+HIIT session, and right after having drank a cup of coffee, makes it think I am working at 92% of my maximum heart rate while comfortably running a 10:32 minute mile pace. I also ordered the flowlink USB connector so I can upload my data files directly to the polar website; that should be here on Thursday.

We spent last night with M's extended family, in typical fashion. Might get together with some friends tonight. I have my 2-hour New Year's yoga class in 35 minutes. VT bowl game on Tuesday night!

2012 fitness goals:
Run a half-marathon. Don't die. (Distance record is 9.3 miles)
Run a 10K in under 1:00:00. (Currently 1:03:08)
Do an unassisted pull-up for the first time since 6th grade gym class. (Working negatives right now)
Do 75 consecutive pushups. (Currently at 52 in 5 sets)
Squat/deadlift 150lbs. (Currently at 105lbs)