Monday Motivation.

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Sometimes you just need a little reminder. A sweet friend sent this to me over the weekend and it was just the extra motivation I needed to hear as my PT wraps up with not huge progress in solving my injuries.

“Never Give Up,” this Momentum bracelet reminds me that everything is a work in progress, and we must not give up (no matter what). We must continue to work to the best of our ability so that we know we have it our all I’m everything we do. I know that at this point in my recovery, I’ve been reaching out to all the right places and working my body in the right way to eventually find a solution. While I’ve only had minor relief, that’s better than no relief. It’s important to listen to our bodies and not force when it’s telling you it’s not ready.

This bracelet also signifies the importance of friendship and believing in people. I will always thing of my fellow bird that gave this to me; her energy and support means the world to me and knowing she believes in me helps me focus even more that I need to believe in myself. I’m blessed to have such thoughtful people in my life during this time and am very grateful for my abilities to train and recover. Love you, Erin!

Another motivating fact for today… It’s leap year! February 29, and extra day of life ! Enjoy it! Work, train, do what you love and relish the extra time you have to do so! ☺️💞🙌🏻

Weekly Recap + Miles

Monday

Opted for afternoon miles, which allowed me to get outside for some quickly, paced miles (#OptOutside).

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Followed by upper-body strengthening with some hip work thrown in. I’ve been using exercise straps/bands to do claim shells, leg lifts, squats, and bridges to work on hip stability.

The upper-body strength included rounds of dynamic bicep curls, hammer curls, overhead tricep, shoulder press, rear flies, bent over rows, and frontal and lateral shoulder raises. #StrongFaster

Tuesday

AM: Started the day with 45 (sweaty) minutes of spin. It was a rainy day, so decided to crosstrain, along with some dynamic stretching. Followed by a green smoothie (one of my favorite, simple recipes: greens + protein seeds + frozen fruit + non-dairy milk + banana or avocado).

 

PM: #LunchTimeGrind

I’ve been working on hamstring and glute strengthening as a part of my PT routine, I’ve been working on this religiously!!! (Hoping good things will come!!!)

Warm-up
Ladder workout
Single-leg deadlifts
Jump switch lunges
Side plank with leg lift
Tricep push-ups
V-Ups
Single-leg squats
Bridge on stability ball
BoSu balance

Wednesday

Rain showers pushed my run indoors. I was able to catch up on life with 6-progression, treadmill miles and Good Morning America and US Weekly.

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PM: 2-Mile warm-up + upper body strengthening (weights and core); followed by some rolling.

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“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determine how well you do it.”

A double workout was necessary in preparation for “Lamb Shack” dinner at Zahav in Old City. My husband and I had been putting off our reservations there for a few months, and once we realized that February was their special “Lamb Shack” month we knew it was not-to miss!

It was sooooo worth it. It was a tasting menu of some of their popular items, as well as some new items. Needless to say by the end, we were both stuffed to the max.

We started with the best hummus I have ever tasted and house baked laffa.  The first course started with six dishes of veggies, including brussel sprouts, carrots, beets, and eggplant. The next course was harder veggies, including fried cauliflower.

The main course included branzino, filet, and lamb shoulder marinated in molasses (to-die-for).

Dessert included chocolate bread pudding, meyer lemons sorbet, and the cutest cookies.

Thursday

AM: 40 minute warm-up + 30 minute kettle bell workout
[kettle bell squats, deadlifts, swings, burpees, bridges….etc].

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Followed by…. all the cereal, sometimes you have to take drastic measures to make it happen.

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Special K Protein is always my go-to + Almond Breeze Unsweetened Vanilla Milk

PM: Went to my very first ZUMBA class, with my mama.

This pretty much sums it up:

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#MaybeBetterToYoga

Friday

AM: Happy #NationalWearTheGibblersDay!!!! All the rainbows for the premiere of the Fuller House (I know what I’m doing tonight). And 6-tempo miles in my Gibblers!!! (Morning win!). 2 mile WU + 3 miles @ MP + 1 mile CD.

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My NEW Oiselle Volee Verrzano Bra gave me some extra motivation!

PM: 2 mile warm up, and another round of hamstring and glute stability exercises.

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I’m wiped it was a long week, looking forward to relaxing tonight in preparation for tomorrow’s LR, and of course preparing for Oscar Weekend!!!

What’s your run plans? Are you planning watch the Oscars?

Friyay Faves.

Happy Friyay y’all! So thankful for a break in the rain we’ve been having all week and ready to see some sunshine. Bring on the weekend.

1. I’ve recently become obsessed with Maybelline products, I’m not sure why… Maybe she’s born with it (yes, you can giggle, lol.)  One of my latest obsessions is the Vivid Matte Liquid. It goes on like a gloss, but dries like a matte and provides lasting color. I went with “Nude Flesh” on my first purchase, because I figure even if I didn’t love it I could get use of a basic color. It has become my permanent at work lip shade. It makes my lips feel so soft and doesn’t come of one everything that touches my lips. I can’t wait to try some of the more fun, bold colors (Possessed Plum, anyone). $7.99 per tube.

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2. I mentioned that for our third anniversary my husband and I both got each other some of the same EXACT things… meant to be I guess. Granted we were working with leather so no many options, but the gloves couldn’t have come at a better time. The Elma Women’s Touchscreen Nappa Leather gloves are gorgeous. I love the color (sand), and the cashmere material inside are so darn comfy! I don’t even want to take them off. Bonus they come in lots of fun colors, too!

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3. Smoked Butterscotch.
Need I say more? Starbucks recently launched a smoked butterscotch latte that is filled with all things, delicious. It’s the perfect amount of sweetness, but not too powerful. If you are a fan of butterscotch….. it’s a must have. Remember these lattes can be filled with empty calories, so watch your milk choice and serving size — unless you are using it as a treat!
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4. Today is #NationalWearTheGibblersDay

As seen on PavementRunner.com:

When: February 26, 2016
What: Wear your Pro Compression Multicolor stripe sock, AKA, #TheGibblers
Why: Because we can, we want to, and the interwebs said so
Why II: Because Andrea is a runner, and loves the community just as much as you and me
Why III: Because this trailer is the best. Hola Tannerinos!

Disclosure: Photos is from the summer, but they are my #Gibblers
Disclosure: Photos is from the summer, but they are my #Gibblers

5. The Oiselle Factory Store Sale! EEKK!!!! I snatched up some Lesley tights, and these gorgeous KC Knickers, can’t wait to rock these this spring!!!! (Planning for warmer temps!)

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Description from Oiselle:
Sleek, ultra-flattering workout capri meets modern geometric print. Wing waistband dips and hugs in all the right places. Back hip zip pocket is large enough to tote anything from your house key to an iPhone 6.

– 85% poly/15% lycra
– below knee compression capri
– signature wing waistband without drawstring
– rear zip pocket
– machine wash + dry / best to line dry
– 15″ inseam (size 4)

You must be a member to get the Factory deals, but new patterns are available, here.

Have a happy weekend!!! xo

Life Essentials: Sherry & Budino

I woke up to the most amazing surprise Saturday — 44 degree temps! #OptOutside.

10 glorious miles in Ridley Creek State Park; happy to have some speed to start, but took it easy to round at an 8:30 pace. Loved the fresh air! Followed it with some PT stretches and the Oiselle Dirty Dozen. #flystyle on point

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Ro’s version of spring cleaning!

Spent the rest of the day cleaning — I guess that’s the first true sign of spring for me! Celebrated with a new butterscotch latte from Starbucks (do yourself a favor and GO get one ASAP)!

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We then headed out to the city with my main squeeze to celebrate our third wedding anniversary, which was postponed due to the ice storm on Monday.

We had early reservations, which was perfect for watching the sunset. We went to one of our favorite, spots a cozy mediterranean restaurant in Center City, Barbuzzo.

They have tons of small plates, so it’s one of my favorites because I love to try a bunch of things1 Who can settle for one meal?

We started with pan-seared Brussel sprouts and short rib and pork meatballs, and then had a gnocchi dish with truffle butter, and the Uovo pizza, which is TO DIE FOR.

Followed by the most amazing dessert, a budino, and sherry; the life essentials. It was one of the best meals we’ve had in a long time. And it was the absolute perfect date night.

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Sherry + Salted Caramel Budino (w/ dark chocolate crust, vanilla bean caramel, and sea salt)

We ended our date night at home, watching Trumbo, a story about Dalton Trumbo, played by Bryan Cranston, who is a screenwriter and a member of the Communist Party in the U.S. He is one of 10 screenwriters that gets put on trail, sentenced to jail, and then blacklisted. You may know him as the writer of “Roman Holiday,” “The Brave One,” and “Spartacus.” The first two, which won the Academy Award for “Best Picture” were written under a fake name. It’s an interesting story.

We were blessed with spring-like temps again on Sunday, so after a pancake breakfast we took Roma to the park for a two-mile walk, she loved every second.

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Afterward, the rain set in, and we made our way to the movie theatre to catch Deadpool. I was warned it was raunchy, but very entertaining. It was a different take on a comic book super hero movie, but I appreciate what they did. And who doesn’t like Ryan Reynolds? I laughed a lot more than expected and was unfazed by some of the crude jokes. If you are looking for a night out with your dude, and like to laugh — definitely give it a go! It’s a popcorn move.

We ended our Sunday with a family dinner. A surprisingly, unplanned, but perfect weekend.

How was your weekend? Did you get spring-like temperatures?

Monday Motivation.

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In a society driven by perfection, this quote really spoke to me. We often get so caught up in the latest fad of what we are eating, drinking, doing, not doing, wearing, watching,in an attempt to “fit in” or be better, or to be perfect we forget that we are human, and we are real. We are capable of so much, so why do we let these things control our choices. We were born to be real. So be.

Weekly Recap + Miles

Monday 

Snow flurries started bright and early so  opted for a treadmill run at lunch with upper body strengthening!

It was our third wedding anniversary! It was so nice to celebrate all weekend with my love, and we had big plans to go to dinner, but Mother Nature had other plans for us. By 5 p.m. the roads were covered with ice, as it had snowed all day and then turned to rain in freezing temps. So we had a low-key dinner at our favorite brick-oven pizza, Ariano, place nearby!

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Arancini, Ariano, Media. Pa

Then we did gift! The traditional anniversary gift for year three is leather. So not a ton of options, but you can imagine our surprise when we realized we literally got each other the SAME things!!! (Great minds).

We have been talking about a trip to Portland — funny enough we both bought each other luggage tags with a theme of “Portlandia” a television show set in Portland. Needless to say we will be heading there this summer. And we both took the leather glove route, along with some extra goodies!

Tuesday

Elliptical for 40 minutes + Full Body Workout

One of my final PT appointments in the evening, that included Graston and lots of stability work, including the ladder, which is basically adult hop scotch (much harder than it looks!)

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Wednesday 

AM: Early morning, easy-paced miles to start the day! It was 30 degrees and it felt like spring! After having to run on the treadmill more times then I’d like to admit it was awesome to run outside!

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PM: I was supposed to have a lunch meeting that got canceled so opted for a quick lunchtime grind!

2-mile warm-up
20 minutes of Tone it Up HIIT Intervals (high knees, jump squats, wall sits, push-ups, jump switches, and mountain climbers) 30seconds – 1 minute 3x; 10 second rest
Back Strengthening
– Seated Row (Weight increasing/Reps decreasing)
– Lat Pull Downs (Weight increasing/Reps decreasing)
– Bent over row (Weight increasing/Reps decreasing)
– 3x

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We celebrated our anniversary with my family and this gorgeous Red Velvet cake.

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Thursday 

With a day full of meetings through the night, I wanted to get my sweat on early. I wanted to run, but I was still swore from my PT session so I opted for the bike.

Spinning: 40 minutes of internals = ALL THE SWEAT.

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Friday 

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AM: I had all intentions of getting outside for a tempo run, but couldn’t bare to bundle for temperatures in the teens again. (I thought it was supposed to be warmer). So took my tempo to the deadmill for 6 miles.

1.5 Warm-Up 8:45
3 Mile-Tempe (8:00, 7:57, 7:45)
1.5 Cooldown 8:20

Followed by planks and stretching

PM: I was looking forward to getting to the gym early afternoon to work on my PT exercises since I was dealing with a lot of pain this week since my last session.

20 minute warm-up (elliptical 1 mile, treadmill 1 mile)
20 minutes Tone It Up Total Body
20 minute stability and strengthening for my hamstring
– Ladder workout (something like this image) – 5 minutes
– Single leg deadlifts (1olbs) (10x each side, 3x)
– Side planks with leg lifts (30 seconds each side)
– Squats + Single leg Squats (10x each side, 3x)
– Single leg bridge on medicine ball (10x each side, 2x)

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…. TGIF, I’m tired.

Looking forward to WARMER temps this weekend (finally). Hoping to run in 40 degree temps tomorrow morning! What are you running plans?

Friyay Faves.

1. Last weekend we spend some quality time with Netflix… and became obsessed with Narcos. It’s a mini series (10 episodes) that chronicles the life of Pablo Escobar and the rise of the cocaine. It shows real footage of Escobar. It’s unreal the way the story unfolds, but also extremely captivating.

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2. Oiselle’s Heads Up Wings Out hoodie is everything I’d thought it would be and MORE. The color is gorgeous and it’s beyond comfy. Let’s just say I didn’t take it off for awhile once I got it. (Thank you fellow bird, Sam for sharing the wealth).

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Oiselle Full Zip Running Hoodie + Flow Tights (and puppy paws!)

3. Straight Outta Compton.

Have you seen it? I know I’m late to the game, but why was this not nominated for as Oscar? Such a compelling story of N.W.A, and the hip hop culture that changed music.

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4. I stumbled upon this article in Self Magazine, and HAD to share. Does your pup Doga? I can’t believe this is a thing… but I’m pretty sure Ro would slay some Doga moves.

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5.  Wild and crazy tights… With so much cold weather, sometime you need motivation to get our the door. And sometimes that motivation is in your gear. Colorful, fun tights make me smile, and have been working for getting me in to swing during early morning wake-up calls!

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Both are from last season… which means deals on deals. Nike running tights similar, here.

Find A Way.

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“…For one moment, just one second, I feel immortal..” These words spoke to me as I trained for, raced, and placed in my first ultra-marathon, the inaugural Clearwater 50K. There is no other way to explain it.

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Needless to say, this quote has stayed with me. And when I saw Diana Nyad was participating in the  Philadelphia Speaker Series sponsored by Widener University, I jumped on the chance to attend.

Diana was incredible. She is not only a down-to-earth human being, but she is one of the most inspiring athletes.

She was genuinely interested in everyone’s story, and was extremely transparent about telling hers. When you are talking with her she makes you feel like you are the only one that matters.

Did I mention that just 2.5 years ago this woman swam from Cuba to Key West at 64 years-old. (See below for a full recap).

 

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Towards the end of the evening I had a chance to show her the canvas I have with her quote on it. She was so genuinely excited about it!

I came home and immediately purchased her latest memoir, “Find A Way.”

 

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Full Recap:

Diana Nyad Inspires the Speakers Series Audience to Chase Dreams

Known for her long-distance swims from the Bahamas to Florida, around Manhattan, and most recently from Cuba to Florida at age 64, Diana Nyad took the Kimmel Center stage on Feb. 8 as part of the Philadelphia Speakers Series. She left the audience with a powerful message: “You are never too old to chase your dreams.”

The author, who was named Adventurer of the Year by National Geographic and became the only American to receive the Cuban Medal of Honor, recounted the most powerful strokes of her life that brought her to the shore of Key West, Florida, and made her the first person to complete the Cuba to Florida swim.

From a young age, Nyad was dedicated to swimming. She had intentions of becoming a champion swimmer, waking up every day at 4:30 a.m. to train. “I knew that in order to get ahead in life, I had to be a fanatic about it,” she explained.

Although Nyad failed to qualify for the U.S. Olympic Team, she had no regrets, because she knew that she had given it her all. “I knew I couldn’t have done it even a fingernail better,” she said, which was a mantra from a teammate that stuck with her. It became the basis for her philosophy of life: “Every day, no matter what you are doing, do it so you couldn’t do it even a fingernail better.”

In graduate school, Nyad discovered distance swimming and was “crazy” enough to pursue it. She never gave up, even if it meant swimming for 18 hours and 20 minutes across Lake Ontario at 48 degrees. This was the beginning of a whole new journey for her. In 1978, she made her first attempt to swim from Cuba to Florida.

At age 30, Nyad put her dreams of Cuba on hold and started a career in sports journalism, working for Fox Sports, NPR, and ABC’s Wide World of Sports. For over 30 years, she covered major athletic events from the Super Bowl to Wimbledon. She didn’t swim a stroke.

When she turned 60, Nyad asked herself, “Are you a person you can admire?” She realized that she still had the dream of completing the 110-mile swim.

“The Cuba to Florida swim is the Mount Everest of the ocean,” she said. “You couldn’t find a more difficult passageway. It’s not just the distance, but it’s due north, which means if you miss it, there isn’t anything for a while.”

She explained each grueling detail of what it would take to accomplish this swim. “The current of the Gulf Stream pulls east, which means every time you stop, you float off course. Then, there is the battle of fighting off hypothermia and seasickness.”

During one of her attempts, she survived a box jellyfish sting. “I shouldn’t have lived through the night,” she said. “There is a 95 percent fatality rate if you are stung.”

It was during her fifth attempt when Nyad did the unimaginable and completed the swim in 53 hours. “The world declared it impossible,” she said.

She’ll never forget the moment when her coach pointed out the lights ahead. “I thought it was the sun coming up,” Nyad said. “But it was the coast of Key West.”

Fifteen hours later, Nyad and her team arrived ashore. “We made history together,” she said. It was the first time the American and Cuban flags hung together since 1959.

Learn more about Nyad in her memoir, “Find a Way: One Wild and Precious Life,” released in 2015.

 

Valentine’s Weekend Celebrations

Our wedding anniversary is February 15, so we always celebrate LOVE over Valentine’s weekend.

This year we started with lunch with my mother, and then a couple’s massage, at our favorite spa! It was heavenly. One of the best parts of the massage is what comes after — peace and relaxation in the Brine Light Therapy Room (plus the most amazing chocolate chip cookies).

We also decide to make it a movie date night! We saw Zoolander 2 + ate all the pizza (his & hers). (romantic, right?) The movie is funny and worth seeing if you are a diehard Zoolander fan, but I’d wait till it hits HBO.

Saturday we spent the morning playing with our pup and watching the U.S. Olympic Trails before I heading out in the bitter cold and negative degree wind chills to run the Feel the Love 5K, but Bryn Mawr Running Company with my Oiselle Volee teammate!

Watching these athletes was so incredibly inspiring, words cannot describe.

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We both bad plans to to PR (and we did, but not as good as we would have liked). The winds were fierce and made the 1.5 loop course extremely challenging. We still had solid times considering and finished first female-female duo. Afterwards we celebrated with beer (too cold) and warm eats!

Team Pink and Black, aka “Bird Machine.” Our post-race pic was taken in the car since it was just too cold to be outside anymore. After a quick change we still wore pink and black to the after-party at McFaddens!

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Neto Chocolatier Truffles. 

This year we decided to stay “in” for Valentine’s Day, which we used to do before we were married. We always consider it a selfish day, and perfect time to stay in, cozy up and enjoy each other’s company. I splurged on some Valentine’s Day Treats from Williams-Sonoma so that we still had some fun things to look forward to!

We started with a breakfast of donuts… because my husband gets me, and we spent the day… Netflix and Chill. At -7 degrees, staying inside was truly the best option.

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Dunkin Donuts, Brownie Batter Donut (yes, please). Williams-Sonoma Heart Collection plates.

We even made homemade surf and turf and had this gorgeous cake to celebrate one of our most memorable Valentine’s Day that we truly made our own! 

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Buttercream icing + Chocolate cake [Take the Cake Bakery, William-Sonoma].
xxoo

What did you do for Valentine’s Day?
Have you ever raced in 35 MPH wind chills? How’d it effect your time?