Vacation ReCUP: the delayed version and tips for cold-weather running

Happy Monday!

I’ve been bad, or busy, or both… I don’t know. 😉 I have a vacation recup AND a weekend recup to post.

Let’s get to the highlights of our PA vacation…

We were in Pennsylvania for one full week, and had a blast hanging out with the Boy’s friends from his college days, and spending quality time with his family.

Monday

We spent the day in Pittsburgh, and got there just in time for brunch. Meag took us to DeLuca’s down in the Strip District. It’s a very low-key diner that only accepts cash, but their menu is enormous and the food is delicious!

Photo Jan 11, 12 35 33 PM

I opted for the hotcake special. Very tasty and very filling!

Photo Jan 11, 12 54 39 PM

On the way back to the car we walked past a teeny-tiny little donut shop that looked way too cool to pass up. I had zero room left in my tummy, but couldn’t resist a couple gourmet donuts. Maple bacon and ginger sugar for the win!

Photo Jan 11, 1 21 32 PM

The next stop on our agenda was REI. I love REI. Always have. Always will. But, there are NONE to be found in Florida. Since suitcase space was limited, I had to behave and just picked up a couple small things.

We ran a few more errands, and just got to enjoy each others company.

Once Meag’s boyfriend got home from work, we all headed out to Burgatory for dinner. And, boy was it good!

Photo Jan 11, 6 55 50 PM

Pittsburgh is about an hour drive from where the Boy’s parents live, so by time we got back, I was far too sleepy to run. So I logged zero miles for Monday and was kind of bummed about that.

Tuesday

Be careful what you ask for! All I want every time we go to PA is some snow. Well, I finally got it! We woke up to this…

Photo Jan 12, 11 19 07 AM

Very pretty! But, not terribly good for running. I took my time getting ready because it initially didn’t look too bad, but by time I got outside, the snow was really coming down. I decided to run a small loop multiple times to get in my miles. The snow was really coming down and my tracks were covered by time I made the loop around. It just wasn’t working for me. I really didn’t want to fall. Obviously! 😉 Because of that, I really slowed my pace. I was running a 15:00 mile, and my form was all over the place because of the road conditions. They just weren’t quality miles, so I threw in the towel just over 2 miles. It wasn’t worth it to risk injury, getting sick (because of the cold and wind), etc.

I wasn’t happy, but I got out there and tried and that’s what counts.

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The rest of our Tuesday was spent rather lazily. Later that night, we went over to one of the Boy’s friends’ house and played some video games. I’m not a big video-gamer, but it was fun because I kept kicking their butts! 🙂

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I was starving by time we left, so we stopped at Eat ‘N Park, where I enjoyed a super tasty gardenburger with an egg on top.

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Wednesday

We spent the day in Pittsburgh again. We had a lot of fun getting acai bowls at Amazing Cafe. Such a cute cafe!

Photo Jan 13, 2 33 46 PM

 

Meag teaches spin and yoga (and just started her own blog, check it out here), and invited me to attend her hot yoga class following either spin or a 3-mile run with the Lululemon Run Club that meets up at the yoga studio.

I really didn’t want to risk getting behind on more of my miles, so running for me! I had 5 on the schedule for the day, so planned to head out for 2 prior to meeting up with the run club. As I was heading out, one of the girls yelled to me to say she wanted to join.

At first, the socially-awkward girl inside of me cringed at this idea (what if she’s too fast for me? what if she’s annoying? what if I’m annoying?), but then I remembered…we’re all runners here, and you know what, runners come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and skill-level. What makes the running community so awesome is that we support one another and share a love and passion for running.

Her name is Toni, and looking back, I am so so happy she joined me. This run was a lot more than I had planned for. There was still snow on the ground, as well as ice. Talking with her helped to distract me from the frigid temps, and it was nice having a guide in an unfamiliar spot.

I felt great for those first two miles.

We made it back to the studio, and met up with the other girls that were willing to brave the cold and snow. And, then we were off…

I’m going to blame the Florida in me for the fact that I was way behind everyone else. It was icy, and I didn’t want to fall. 😉 It wasn’t until the last mile that things got brutal. My leg tightened up, and I lost all feeling in my toes.

I finished. I don’t know how, but I finished.

P.S. the Lululemon Run Club is a pretty awesome group of girls to run with. And also the best dressed run club I have EVER seen…

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And then it was time for hot yoga. Have I told you how much I hate hot yoga?! I don’t like being hot. With that being said, it was a really great class and it was so awesome to see Meag in her element, doing what she loves.

Taking her class makes me want to get back into yoga (not hot yoga). That’s to be continued though…

Since our flight was the next morning, it made more sense for us to stay at Meag’s house. We headed back home, got in a good nights sleep, and that was it.

Before moving to Florida, I lived in Colorado for seven years. That’s actually where I consider “home”. But, it was on this trip to PA that I realized, I was never a runner there. The only running I ever did was recreationally at an indoor track, and that was maybe a mile here and there.

Now that I have had the chance to be a cold-weather runner, I: 1) have some tips to share, and 2) will no longer complain about the heat in Florida. I have year-round running weather, and for that I am very fortunate.

So, now I share with you…

10 Tips for Running in Cold Weather

  1. Hydrate. In the cold your body may not feel as thirsty as it would in the heat, but staying hydrated is important no matter where you live and run.
  2. Layer up. Running in a base layer top, a long sleeve shirt, and vest worked well for me.
  3. Wool socks. ‘Nuff said. I forgot mine and well, it just hurt!
  4. LINED tights or base layer tights under running tights.
  5. Mittens. Gloves keep your fingers separated allowing them to get cold on their own. Mittens keep your fingers together and toasty.
  6. NO toe socks. Same thing as the glove vs mitten debate.
  7. Cover your head and ears. Two thick headbands over my headphones worked well for me.
  8. Invest in a buff or balaclava. Prior to this PA trip, I had never used a Buff before, and now I cannot say enough good things about it. Get one! 🙂
  9. Shorten your stride. It will help you to avoid slipping/falling, and will make you more aware of the (road) conditions around you.
  10. Yaktrax. I can tell you, if cold-weather running was a regular thing for me, Yaktrax would be one of the first things I’d invest in.

Stay tuned for my weekend reCUP tomorrow and a GIVEAWAY!

Question of the day

What cold-weather running tips am I missing?

Weekend Recap

Happy Sunday!

I have been enjoying a great weekend over here, and hope that yours has been just as good! My weekend has been active and relaxing all at the same time, and I love that!

It’s been a couple days, so let’s get to the recap…

Friday

Friday was a great end to the work week. It was national Donut Day and I definitely got in my fair share of donuts. Looking back it may have been overkill, but those sprinkles are hard to turn down. 😉

Happy Donut Day!

I received a special delivery at the office! My parents are so sweet and sent me a little show of appreciation for all the time I’ve spent helping out mom these past couple weeks. This was completely unexpected and so not necessary; for all they have ever done for me, I have been happy to help out.

Pretty and pink!
Pretty and pink!

It was “Friday Night Date Night” so for dinner, the Boy and I went to Smokey Bones.

Somebody is excited for date night

I enjoyed an incredibly yummy grilled chicken salad. Lately restaurant salads have not been doing it for me, but this one was GOOD.

Grilled chicken salad with goat cheese, pecans, and cranberries. YUM!

We then went over to Barnes & Noble and spent some time browsing the shelves.

Saturday

We slept in Saturday morning, and did not get up until close to 11:30. The Boy made us pancakes for breakfast and then I spent the next few hours being lazy and catching up on blog reading and research.

The rain forced me to bring my run inside. But, by time we got to the gym I was just not feeling it. I was in a funky mood and just not feeling the idea of running. I still wanted to try though. It was tough at first- I mean I was at like 1.78 miles and wanting to stop- I kept going and just pushed through the funk and was able to get in a good 5 miles. I hadn’t had much of any water leading up to the run, so I think that definitely played into my lackluster performance.

Luckily I had a good read because my face screams GRUMPY!
5 miles DONE!

If you are having trouble getting used to treadmill running, I HIGHLY suggest you find a treadmill where you can place a book/iPad/Kindle/Nook/phone at eye level and get an Oyster account. It will help your treadmill miles fly by! Lately I have been reading Run by Dean Karnazes and absolutely love it! If that man continues to write books for as long as I live, I will die a very happy girl! 🙂

After the gym, we picked up pizza and salad and headed to my parents house for dinner.

Hungry Howie’s makes one of the best greek salads!

After spending some time chatting with mom and dad, we made our way home and did some reading before watching an episode of Dr. Who.

We both just started watching Dr. Who, and are really enjoying it. Me a little bit more so than the Boy- which is surprising. It’s silly and far-fetched, but the storyline is rather intriguing.

Sunday

I had planned to wake up early to lay out, but my bed was just so cozy. I got up around 10:30, ate breakfast, and quickly got ready. I had a noon shopping date on the horizon! Michelle (from work) and I had a Tampa shopping day planned. We started at Westshore Plaza, and eventually made our way to International Plaza where we had lunch at Brio.

Strawberry balsamic chicken salad

The stores were having some pretty good sales, and I got a bunch of tank tops and t-shirts, a dress for work, and the cutest pair of running shorts. We definitely shopped until we dropped!

Shopping finds!

The Boy and I grabbed a bite to eat before going to Publix so I could secure Salad Pool fixins for the week ahead. We spent the remainder of our night preparing for the work week and just relaxing.

Question of the day

How was your weekend?

Day in Pictures and DONUT DAY

Good morning and happy Friday!

Finally Friday is upon us! Whoo!

Today is National Donut Day! Next to National Running Day this may be the best day of all. Hah! Who am I kidding?! This is the best day of all!

Yesterday was a great day, but boy did it drag.

Here’s my Thursday in pics…

Salad Pool salad for lunch, including: romaine, spinach, cucumber, apples, cherry tomatoes, green and purple onions, pepperchinis, feta cheese, Salad Toppins, chia seeds, and rotisserie chicken. Yum!

For dinner, I picked up Chipotle for mom and I. I always hate the drive home after getting takeout. The yummy smells usually make me extra hangry. Luckily the smell of this wasn’t too strong. 😉

Chipotle veggie salad- no dressing. I tried brown rice for the first time, and it wasn’t too bad. 

I did some light stretching and core work..

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Before attempting to take Smoke out for a run.

This is his “I’m done with this” look!

Questions of the day

How will you be celebrating Donut Day?

What was your Thursday workout?