Friday Five: July Loves

This is how I’m feeling right about now:

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Ready for flip flops & summer skies & carefree everything — feeling those weekend vibes! Hope you’re counting down to something fun this weekend, wherever you are.

Today’s Friday Five linkup with the DC ladies Mar, Cynthia & Courtney is a “Free Friday,” which I’m interpreting as July Loves (aka things I’m loving this month).

ONE: Casual Fridays. This is a sweet perk about my new job that I haven’t had before, and I’m loving it. I’m actually wearing pants (obsessed with these wide-leg linen pants I got in Chicago this spring) for the first time since I started working here and it’s so nice to be so comfy at work. It also helps create such a laid-back atmosphere, which is always welcome on a trading floor. 

TWO: Balance board. We have standing desks at work, so my friend who sits next to me had the brilliant idea of ordering balance boards to stand on!

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So rad, and totally catching on — I wouldn’t be surprised if a bunch more people will jump on this bandwagon! (I bought this one off Amazon.)

THREE: Rosé. All day. This has definitely been the drink-of-the-month for me…and every other white girl in America, I know I know. Hey, if the shoe fits…

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FOUR: Marathon training. Having a plan for my running is a nice change again and I’m excited about sticking to it and mapping my progress. Also doesn’t hurt that I just got these babies my second week into training and am loving tackling a race with a fresh pair of kicks! IMG_9864
Feels oh-so-good. This will actually be my first full marathon in Nikes, now that I think of it! I ran the Brooklyn Half this May in these exact sneaks (diff pair/color) and have been having so much success with them this year, so it’s out with the Asics and in with the swoosh. I find I tread much lighter in these and haven’t had any shin pain thus far, so I’m praying they do me well all the way through. 

FIVE: Athleta. I love Lulu’s sports bras like no other, but I’m definitely a fan of Athleta’s colorful tights/capris and just got a new pair this week:

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Their Mesh Sonar Capris in this cobalt color = so cute. I felt like I had to give them a shout-out today because they’re having an awesome sale right now that you definitely want to check out: an extra 20% off their already reduced sale items thru Monday 7/25. DO IT.

Hope you have a lovely weekend, friends! Mine will be full of running, fruit, lake time and people I love…in other words, exactly how I like my world to be.❤

Whatcha up to this weekend?
Anyone else drink copious amounts of rose in the summer? Any favorite kinds?

Marathon Training: Week 2

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So, it’s official: my “Weekly Workouts Wednesday” posts will now be “Marathon Training Updates” until October, as I kicked my butt into gear and started following a plan as of last week, so this is Week 2 for me, although not as per the actual plan. I’m following a Hal Higdon training plan flexibly, adjusting things as-needed and not beating myself up over sticking to the plan to a T. Must.not.overtrain. 

Thurs, 7/14: 3.1 miles (plan called for 3, so right on the $). Easy peasey!

Fri, 7/15: Rest (planned). I did strength & abs in my gym.

Sat, 7/16: 11 (glorious!) miles. This run felt sososososo good! Yes, it was hot, and so hilly (upstate NY likes to roll), but I felt amazing and strong and kept up such a good pace. I finished wishing every run could feel that runderful! (cheeeeese) The plan called for 6, but I’m doing my long runs on Saturdays most weeks (instead of Sundays).

Sun, 7/17: 3.2 miles (with the boy). I’m reversing my weekend long runs, so technically my plan called for a 6 and a 9 miler this weekend for a total of 15; I did an 11 and a 3, for a total of 14, but with a longer run in there. This worked well for me. Both runs were also non-stop hills, which I know is helpful (but can be so hard!).

Mon, 7/18: Rest. Plan called for cross training but a) no time as I worked 12 hours and b) let’s be honest – I don’t do that. Spinning just isn’t my thing…and so $$$!

Tues, 7/19: 4 miles (as planned). Felt so-so. Sometimes the shorter ones are meh as it usually takes me a few miles to get warmed up/in the groove, and I was pretty tired.

Wed, 7/20: 5.25 miles (plan said 7). I was tired, could feel the beginnings of some soreness (must foam roll tonight), and snoozed for 20 minutes before making myself run this morning, which set me behind on time. Having said all that – I feel good with 5 and am glad I didn’t push it for more, as my IT band is really sore today and one of my priorities in this training cycle is to listen to my body and not overdo it.

Total weekly mileage: 26.55. Thrilled with that!

Running song of the week: “Dancing on Glass” by St. Lucia

What’re you training for right now?
Throw some tunes my way! Could use some new running music!

The Best Days

If my future self could communicate with me right now and told me that I was, in fact, currently living out some of what I’d always remember as the very best days of my life, I would 100% believe her. It all feels that authentically, blissfully good right now. I feel so healthy and balanced and happy and comfortable in my own skin, in my own lovely little life. Of course, some of this is because SUMMER, but I attribute a good deal of it to things just going swimmingly well and having a hopeful, positive attitude. That really does wonders for a soul.

Things are just good. Work is good (job one, the new one) and wonderful (job two, the passion job). Running is really, really good right now. I feel balanced, and happy, and surrounded by amazing people on all sides and angles. That really does wonders for me, having quality people cross-contexts. I enjoy my co-workers and feel fortunate to work with some of my close friends; I love weekends at home with my family; I have absolutely won the human being lottery when it comes to my boyfriend.

I’m really, genuinely happy right now. & I plan to ride this joywave for as long as I can.

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This past weekend was one for the books, as they say (I really have to start looking up the origins of cliches). I spent it upstate at the lake with the boy and one of my best friends.

Weekend Highlights

Dave Matthews Band. I have been such a fan of this band since I was about 14 and discovered how ridiculously amazing they are. This was my (count ’em) 10th time seeing them, and we went to my favorite outdoor venue, SPAC in Saratoga (one of the cutest towns I’ve ever seen, and a place I’d easily live one day). Dave never fails to put on an incredible show, selling out a 30,000 person amphitheater, and we had a blast dancing and drinking rose and loving our summer lives. Outdoor concerts are such a quintessential summer event for me, as I grew up going to SPAC every year, and my heart was so happy.

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Lake life/SUP. This is the summer of stand-up paddleboarding for this gal, and I can’t get enough. We thought it looked like it was built for two, so I paddled while she struck crazy half-yoga moves and basically danced around. By some miracle, we kept our balance!

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Is there anything better than a gorgeous day on the lake with some of your favorite people? I highly doubt it.

Running. So I’m just gonna (shamelessly) say it: I’m killing this lately.

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(I also ran in new sneaks for the first time this morning, which is always exciting! Same ones I’ve been running in, just brand spankin’ new and diff colors!).

I know very well just how those feel-amazing times go through cycles, and how frustrating and difficult the not-so-amazing, dealing-with-injuries, feeling-meh phases can be, so right now, I’m basking in the fact that I feel great and strong and am praying this lasts (for, like, ever would be great). I had one of my best runs in a long time on Saturday morning: 11 miles in the heat and sunshine, at a really decent pace (I even had a 7:45 mile in there!), almost entirely under or about 8:30s, with hills. It.felt.amazing.

The boy and I then ran a little over 3 miles on Sunday as well, so it was 14 (hilly!) miles for me this past weekend. #notbadatall

Also, in fun running (frunning??) news, I found this never-seen-before (by me or my family) photo of my grandfather and his 1924 Olympic gold medal relay team online on Friday:

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How amazing is that?! He’s one on the far left and my dad looks so much like him (and I’m being told by friends and colleagues I do as well?!). I printed it out for my dad and hope to have it framed — I love this part of my family history so much and take such pride in being part of a runlegacy!

Other fun weekend activities included a trip to the Troy Farmer’s Market with my friend Alex & my parents, which is such a great Saturday morning activity in the Capital Region. (Fave vendors for me include The Placid Baker & BuddhaPesto, which is by far the best pesto I’ve ever had!)

So yeah, this weekend was phenomenal. And I hope the same for you all of you!

Tell me a highlight from your weekend!
Fave band?

Weekly Workouts (7/7-7/13)

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I’m pretty stoked that my weekly workouts Wednesday posts will be tailored around my marathon training from now til October, as I think the accountability will be good for me and it’ll be interesting to see just how closely I adhere to the Hal Higdon plan and what adaptations I need to make for my personal marathon training journey. My #1 priority is staying injury-free and healthy and feeling good throughout this, so I know for sure that I do not want to over-train and burn out. I’m all about running 3-4 days a week if that’s what my body needs some weeks and am not stressin’ about maintaining a 5-day weekly running schedule if it’s too much for me as the mileage begins to build.

All that to say, I’m living the flex life with this training when necessary. Shin splints, don’t you dare do it. Don’t even think about it this year.

Thurs, 7/7: (rest day from running) upper body & abs sets: push-ups (regular and tricep); biceps & flys with 10lb weights; planks; bicycles
Fri, 7/8: 2.5 miles on treadmill (first ‘mill run in ages, and after work for once – had to get some sweat time in somehow that day!); upper body: 25-lb kettlebell exercises; arms, shoulders & back with 5-lb plates; push-ups (regular and tricep); 3 minutes planks
Sat, 7/9: early 9-mile run along the Hudson River path/Riverside Park. This felt wonderful and was much-needed, as I spent the rest of the day drinking rosé on Governor’s Island.:)
Sun, 7/10: 4-mile run along the river (downtown to Chelsea this time)
Mon, 7/11: rest (although even on my rest days I walk a few miles around the city, so that counts, right??)
Tues, 7/12: 3.75 mile run, 6:30am & humid. This was the first day I was like, “Okayyyy, time to start following a marathon plan!” It called for a 3-mile morning, but some days you just feel like an over-achiever.
Wed, 7/13 (today): 5.11 miles (plan called for 5 – why did I ever run without my Garmin? I love knowing the exact mileage. #runnerd), 6am & humid again. Love my morning runs but totally not loving the morning humidity lately!

Total weekly mileage: 24.36

Thoughts: Running happy this week! Feeling good about tackling this training cycle. Had a little IT band pain for 2 days early this week but hit the foam roller immediately and it honestly helped a lot – I know I need to keep that as my BFF throughout this process and use it daily.

How’s the running going? What’re we training for?
How do you pep talk yourself through your most humid runs?
 When I start to really feel the heat and feel sluggish, I remind myself that cold weather is much worse and I stick my head under every water fountain I pass. Ahhhh love that feeling.:) 

Two Things Tuesday

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ONE: Marathon training has officially begun! As of this morning, in fact! Yes, I’ve been running consistently, but I just decided today at 6am that I should probably, like, follow a plan or something. What race am I training for? The Mohawk Hudson River Marathon in the Capital Region of Upstate, NY — yes, the same (and only) 26.2 mile course I’ve run twice before. Hey, if it ain’t broke…right?
IMG_8395I’ve had two great experiences and love the course and running in early October, and it’s important to me to run a race at home so that my parents & loved ones can be there, so this has become my favorite race. I’ve done the half twice (2011 & 2012) and the full twice thus far (2013 & 2015), forced to defer 2014 due to an injury, and I’m excited to train for this full again. I like the structure and accountability a training plan offers me, even if I don’t always stick to it unwaveringly, and I’m hoping the next 13 weeks take me on a journey of self that challenges & stretches me in all sorts of ways.

I’ve chosen to follow Hal Higdon’s Intermediate 1 Marathon Training plan, which is the same one I (loosely) used last time. No complaints with it and I adjust as needed.

TWO: Dave Matthew Band — in concert, this coming Saturday night. So, so stoked for this outdoor summer concert at my favorite (and most-frequented) concert venue, Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC). I’ve seen dozens of concerts & ballets here throughout my life, but DMB has always been the front-runner — this will be my 10th time seeing them in concert since I became a huge fan in my early teens. An outdoor show on a golden evening in Saratoga, NY, where the music couldn’t be any more summer-perfect and the atmosphere is one of overwhelming joy and revelry just to be alive in that moment…those are some of my favorite memories of growing up Upstate, and I can’t wait to relive that again this weekend!

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Dave selling out SPAC!

What’s something you’re looking forward to this week?
Anyone following a plan/training for a fall marathon?

Pinknic & Beach Bummin’

This weekend was a best weekend. So much so, that I have no choice but to link up with Katie for my first Marvelous in my Monday post in a while, because, well — my weekend was nothing short of mar-vel-ous.

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I’m talking jam-packed from start-to-finish with all sorts of wonderful people & events & activities & food & fun. I honestly can’t think of anything I’d have rather done this weekend than exactly what I did. Riding that high pretttyyyy nicely this Monday morning.

When the boy arrived on Friday evening, we set off for our first highly-anticipated weekend adventure: a dinner date trip to Pokeworks, a casual Hawaiian poke place near Bryant Park, where we took our food and had a lovely little park date dinner.

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This build-your-own poke bar was such a stellar choice, and we quickly agreed we’d be back soon (and often). He had a Pokiritto (White Rice & Seaweed Wrap) with ahi, salmon and shrimp, and I chose a salad option with ahi, salmon, and so many yummy toppings (ginger, wasabi, scallions, garlic, mango, seaweed). I could seriously eat this all.the.time. His only gripe was that it didn’t fill him up, but that’s easily fixable — two orders next time for the boy, please.

We also stumbled upon a nice little surprise at the nearby wine store in the form of this hard-to-find-in-NYC bottle for which we’ve been looking for months now, popping into every wine store we pass to ask if they have this cab sav we stumbled upon at a West Village speakeasy this winter and really enjoyed: Owens & Vaughn.

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So happy this actually exists in NYC! We somehow managed to refrain from drinking it this weekend (you’ll see why in a moment), so I’m already looking forward to enjoying it upstate at the lake next weekend.

Thanks to a quiet Friday night, I pumped out a felt-so-good 8-mile run on Saturday morning (woot!) before we dressed up in pink & white and met our friends for a full day double date at NYC’s first Pinknic at Governor’s Island!

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This was my (and Ty’s) first time to Gov Island, which is literally a 5-minute ferry ride from downtown Manhattan. It was so fun to see all the pink & white clad pinknic-ers festively gathering to drink rosé and lounge around all day. After all, isn’t that what Saturdays in Summer are designed for?

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This was the inaugural event, and we were glad we went and had a wonderful time drinking allll the sparkling rosé and playing Phase 10 (do yourself a favor and buy that immediately if you don’t have it) and picnicking to our hearts content. We all felt that the event could really benefit from making some organizational changes in future years, however. The line to get in was an absolute nightmare and they clearly needed a lot more people working the entrance to expedite that process, as we stood in line for about 45 minutes; there didn’t seem to be enough pink blankets spread out for everyone (although we found one easily, thankfully); they ran out of sparkling wine toward the end, and the boys said the wine tables weren’t organized intuitively either. We agreed we probably would just buy our own bottles of wine and recreate this in a park next year, but we had a blast and are glad we experienced it.

Sunday started with another morning run for me, a 4-5 miler this time, before we set out for a day of that beach bum life at the Rockaways. This beach community in Queens is where my mom grew up going, and it was another first for me this weekend that totally did not disappoint. The area was devastated by Sandy and then rebuilt beautifully, with a wide boardwalk and beach bar, and is a haven for surfers. An easy hour subway ride from NYC, you feel like you’re transported to an entirely different world than the one you just left — one much more California-esque than NYC, which we loved.

The highlight of the Rockaways (aside from the beach, of course) is definitely the raddest bar I’ve been to in NYC: The Rockaway Beach Surf Club, which also houses an uber popular taco stand inside it called Tacoway Beach.

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This place was everything an authentic beach/surf bar should be, IMO, and I wish I owned it/lived there/lived close enough to make it my regular hangout. We drank frozen watermelon margaritas and ate delicious little tacos (grilled tofu for me, which were yum) and played Phase 10 yet again, and felt like we’d found the bar on the East Coast that best fit our personalities and beach bum dreams. Seriously, I already cannot wait to go back.

So, that was my marvelous weekend in a nutshell! Hope you guys had amazing weekends as well.

Weekend highlight?
Best beach by you?
What’s your ideal bar/hangout? 
Surf bum style for me, all the way!

Thinking Out Loud Thursday

I’m back to posting 2 days consecutively?! I was starting to think this might not happen for a bit, so I’m glad to have surprised myself!

Linking up with Miss Amanda at Running with Spoons for TOLT.

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ONE: Rosé all day, anyone? Weather permitting (I’m totally doing a rain dance on Friday night as this forecast looks the woooorst), that’s what I’ll be doing this Saturday afternoon, with the man and two of our close friends. Governor’s Island, an island a short ferry ride from downtown Manhattan, is hosting the very first rosé-themed picnic aka Pinknic (my inner wordnerd gets a kick out of that). They spread the grounds out with pink blankets and we bring our own picnics, and we all wear pink & white and listen to bands and sip rose all day like there’s nothing else in the world we’d rather be doing. I have my pink & white dress all ready to go!

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TWO: Continuing on with the rosé theme, my roommate and I finally visited this really cute, off-the-beaten-path wine bar in our neighborhood we’d been eyeing for a while called Ardesia. It was a sold spot; nice patio, large indoor space, good service, fun summer cocktails and very reasonably-priced bottles of wine. We chilled outside with a bottle of rosé champagne and agreed it was a very return-able choice of a local jaunt.

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The indoor space is pretty big and has a split-level room raised to the side of the bar, and I love the floating wine rack in the back and the chalkboard mural walls. Really cool vibe.

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THREE: I mentioned I started a new job in June, right? Well, I’m happy to report that almost a month in and I’m really glad with the move. Sometimes you need to change things up to find out that life can be smoother, after all. The people are great, it’s an easy walk from my apartment, and there’s a juice truck right outside the building. Boom.

FOUR: Speaking of work perks…I currently have a ginormous television above my desk (trading floor life) and am enjoying watching the France vs. Germany soccer game. Not quite a communal table at a biergarden, but hey…I’m not complaining.

FIVE: For the past 4 months(ish), I’ve been exclusively a Nike runner…and I love it. Although many factors could be at play and I can’t attribute my “running feels oh-so-good-lately” vibe 100% to the sneaks, I definitely believe they’ve played a huge role, and I’m sticking with ’em. Just ordered a new pair of the same ones, in a slightly diff color: Zoom Fly 2, take 2. And add fluorescent yellow.707607_503SIX: Does anyone else eat the skin of kiwis, or am I seriously the only one? I bite those babies like apples. I’m not sure when I decided this was acceptable — sometime within the last year, I think? – but it doesn’t bother me at all. The guy who sits beside me asked me today (upon watching what is apparently the weirdest thing ever) if I also eat bananas with the peel on them. Pretty sure that was rhetorical.

SEVEN: Do you ever just want to post pictures of you and your boytoy because he’s the cutest thing ever and you can’t stop? Plus, festive holiday weekend clothing. Win.

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EIGHT: I felt like I had so much more to say today (finally!) but I’m off to drink cocktails out of teapots and Gatsby-style champagne glasses at my new fave Midtown spot, so I’ll just say HAPPY FRIDAY EVE, friends!

Tell me something random from your day?