Sons

Oh my gosh, I have so much to share with you guys. The theme of this post is SONS, because that’s what the last few days have been all about.

Let’s rewind to Saturday when I went to see Mumford and Sons! Marcus, Lindsey, Jim, and I headed down to Bristol, VA/TN for an all day music festival. Bristol is one of the coolest small towns I’ve ever been to. It sits directly on the state line, so half the town is in Virginia and the other half is in Tennessee. The funniest part to me is that smoking is banned in Virginia restaurants, but not in Tennessee, so you’d walk into a bar on one side of the road and there were ashtrays and people smoking, but right across the street that was illegal. So weird!

Mandatory tourist picture, standing in two states at once!

I’m guessing that not too many bands make pitstops in Bristol, because the town went all out. All of the shop windows on State Street were decorated, there were tents set up with BBQ grilling and beer on tap. It was awesome! The festival itself was held in a massive parking lot. There were 2 stages set up with about 10 bands playing, plus lots of food and entertainment. We enjoyed our time eating food, drinking beer, sitting in the perfect 80 degree shade, listening to bands, and trying to blend in with hipsters.

Did we succeed? Hipsters love fedoras, for the record.

The highlight, of course, was Mumford and Sons. They played an amazing set and really got the crowd into it! I didn’t know too many of their songs (other than their hits), but I enjoyed every single one that they played. At the end of their set, they brought all of the bands from the day on stage for a grand finale ditty. Sidebar: does anyone still use the word ditty? If not, we should bring it back in style.

We couldn’t have asked for a nicer day, seriously. What a blast!

Yesterday, “sons” took on a whole new meaning as my sister, Erin, and my brother-in-law Robert welcomed their first-born son into the world. I’m officially an aunt!

Kyle Robert Studer was born at 11:38am on Monday, August 13th weighing in at 6 lbs 4 oz. Mom and baby (and dad too!) were doing great when I went to visit them last night.

Aren’t they a cute little family?

Everything about him is absolutely perfect. He’s the most adorable baby I’ve ever seen, ever. Between my mom, his mom, and me this kid is going to be so spoiled. All of our hearts were overflowing yesterday, I think my mom and sister cried tears of joy about 8 times. Even I choked up a bit when I received a picture text from Robert with the details. I feel lucky that I live close enough that I could go visit him on his first day. He is already loved by so many people.

I can’t wait for Kyle to get old enough where I can start corrupting him. Oh, and Erin and Robert, if you ever need a babysitter…you have mom’s number. ūüėÄ

Is it possible for a heart to explode from being so full of love? Because I love the crap out of this guy already!

What makes you supremely happy?

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Nail Tales, Pt. 2

If you are one of my male readers, you may as well just skip to the end of this post now. I can almost guarantee that nothing I say in the next few paragraphs will be of interest to you.

Let me first explain how un-girly I am. I pretty much refused to wear dresses through high school and the color pink was my least favorite color in the world. I was into sports and wearing jean shorts (what? It was the 90’s). It hasn’t been until recently (read: the last 6-7 years) that I’ve really begun to embrace my femininity. With that, there have been some growing pains when it comes to things most girls learn when they are younger, when I had no interest. Think: putting on make-up, doing hair, etc.

My most recent adventure has me delving into the world of manicures. I’ve been doing pedicures for a few years now, but manicures have been lost on me. I’ve always kept my nails super short and unpainted, but recently I’ve started noticing manicures…EVERYWHERE! Even the American Olympians have their nails painted red, white, and blue. And I thought, I bet I could do that too!

You may remember my first abysmal attempt with a manicure pen:

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Errr, FAIL!

Not to be deterred, I tried, tried again. I went out and bought some base coat, quick drying nail polish, and a top coat. The result?

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Whoa, not good! The quick drying polish dried too quick, before I even got my whole nail painted. It started clumping and looking uneven. When they say quick dry, they mean it!

I removed the paint and tried again, this time faster:

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Seriously now, WTF! Apparently you aren’t allowed to pick up cotton swabs while your nails are drying. So I removed the polish and tried ONE MORE TIME (switching out the quick dry for regular and waiting for it to dry completely before doing anything):

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Alright, so it’s not terrible, but it’s far from perfect. I missed around the edges, got some cuticles, and it’s still a little clumpy. Here’s my question to all of you people with perfectly manicured nails,

HOW DO YOU DO IT?! Share your tips.

If you’re a dude and you read through all that, here’s a picture of Optimus Prime to redeem your manhood:

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This weekend I’m putting marathon training on hold for a mini-road trip to Bristol, VA/TN. The town is right on the border of the two states and apparently is the birth place of country music. Mumford & Sons is hosting an all day music festival with bands, local food, and BEER! The temperature isn’t supposed to reach above 80 degrees. <- I cannot tell you how happy this makes me. I am pretty darn excited! This will be my first time crossing the state border into Tennessee.

Updates and nerdy touristy photos to follow. ¬†ūüôā

But for real, please answer the nail question. Thanks!

What’s In Your Wallet?

Let’s start this post the way I start out all of my posts.

I ran 16 miles this weekend. It sucked, but not nearly as badly as I thought it would. Marathon. Running. Blah, blah, blah.

It was hot as balls.

It’s always hot. You can go away now summer. Blah, blah, blah.

Post maniac-run chill pool time. Hey, I have a summer tan to maintain here.

Blah, blah, blah.

So, now that all the typical stuff is out of the way, I figured I’d go in a different direction with today’s post.

The other week, I was at lunch and pulled out my wallet. It was¬†observed¬†how much stuff I carry around in there on a daily basis, half of which I don’t even need.¬†I’m pretty sure that if “Carrying Random Crap in Your Wallet” was an Olympic competition, I’d win the gold medal.¬†This sparked a conversation about all the random things we carry around in our wallets. Strangely enough, I think my wallet gives a bit of insight into who I am, so I thought I’d share.

Meet my wallet. It’s Coach, and I got for Christmas a year ago. I love it!

Here is a broad peek inside. I’d describe it as organized clutter, which goes along with my style perfectly. My room may look a little cluttered, but everything has a place and, trust me, I know where everything is.

You will rarely ever find me with any cash. So, for the most part, this side compartment remains empty. I’m just so poor!

In the front card organizer, I have my most used/most important cards: ID, debit card, credit cards, AAA card, and health insurance card.

In the middle pouch, I have random change (mostly pennies since the quarters, dimes, and nickels typically go into paying metered parking, grrr) and some coupons to Smoothie King. I do looove my smoothies! Oh, and $10 off The Melting Pot which I completely forgot I had. Who wants fondue!?

The back card organizer is where things start to get a little random. I have a Blockbuster card (are they even in business anymore?), my Rockville Sports ID (where I don’t play anymore), an empty (I think) rebate card from Acuvue, my CVS Extra Care Card, 1 expired Disney World Park Pass (from my marathon in Jan 2011), and 1 expired Disney World hotel key (from the same trip).

There’s a mini, hidden compartment in the back of my wallet. This is where everything else goes and the randomness continues. There’s a VCU basketball ticket, an old picture of Brook and me, a Richmond Flying Squirrels baseball ticket, a John Mayer ticket stub, a Foo Fighters ticket stub, 2 JMU Football tickets (one for the Virginia Tech game <– best game EVER!!), a few business cards (including my bartender from Babes, my tattoo guy, a cabbie, and Jim…I don’t know why I have his business card), and finally, a Magic the Gathering playing card. WHO KNOWS why I carry this around with me? It’s been on my person since middle school when a friend of mine gave me the card as a joke, and ever since then I’ve always carried it in my wallet. So random.

Anyway, you should see the card holder I keep attached to my key ring. There are football tickets and flyers in there from 2005, I kid you not.

What’s in YOUR wallet?

Weight Loss, Swag, & Chicken

Remember back at the beginning of the year when I publicly proclaimed my goal to lose weight? Remember how I updated you guys for like 2 weeks and then basically stopped? Well I may have stopped writing about it in¬†excruciatingly¬†painful detail, but that doesn’t mean I gave up all together. Sure, I’ve had my good weeks and bad weeks. I’ve definitely wavered and faltered on my healthy eating; but overall, I’ve been doing MUCH better. It’s a very subtle change, virtually¬†unnoticeable¬†if you see me everyday. But I’ve actually lost 15 lbs and I feel so great! The other day someone told me that I looked “fitter”…I’LL TAKE IT!

I made a promise to myself awhile back: No buying new clothes until you reach a certain goal weight. Gotta love positive¬†reinforcement! That goal weight for me: 160. For the most part (I needed new underwear, okay!?), I kept that promise to myself. So, that’s why I was SOOOO excited when I stepped on the scale yesterday and it read:

Wooohoooo! Time for some new SWAG! I immediately stepped off the scale, hopped in my car, and drove to the mall. I got a little excited and went on a bit of a spree. But, mostly everything was a necessity.

I got 5 new running shirts! I usually have the hardest time finding running gear that I like and fits me well. I have never found a tank top that fits correctly. As a “curvy runner” (as I like to refer to myself), I can’t wear the super tight fitting running tanks. Like seriously, you can’t have hips and wear one of those or it’ll ride up like crazy and you’ll spend most of the run pulling it back down. I was pretty pumped when I found a semi-fitted running tank yesterday that fit perfectly! I bought 3! Hah.¬†I looooove Target’s running gear. The Champion brand really works well for me, plus it’s so much cheaper than Nike. Win, win.

These were kind of a spur of the moment buy. I know, I just bought new running shoes. But, remember how I was hesitant to buy Nike because they don’t always work well for my wide feet? And then, remember how I started to feel pain in my foot? Well, I think the two events are related. I went for the Brooks brand this time around. I’ve heard good things and they felt nice and lightweight on my big, fat feet. I’m going to take them for a light 6-miler tomorrow morning. I’m pretty excited to test them out! I also think it’s important for runners to have more than 1 pair of shoes, so I will probably alternate between using both.

I bought this dress from Old Navy because it was cute and I wanted to. Let’s be honest, you can never have enough summer dresses.

And then this happened. I have been wanting to buy brightly colored pants for awhile now, but I’ve been wondering whether or not I’m hipster enough to pull them off. Well, verdict is in: apparently I am. I went ahead and bought these teal ones from Old Navy and I’m sort of obsessed. I’ll probably need to buy 4 more pair, but I’ll have to limit wearing them only when I’m at scene concerts. Also, seriously Old Navy, WTF is up with your sizing on these? I am NOT a size 14.

My final purchase of the day. Obviously not for me, but for my sister! She and Robert have this whole monkey/animal set up in the soon-to-be baby’s room and I just couldn’t resist this. Look at the freaking monkeys on the feet! I’m going to explode from cuteness overload. Anyway, this was going to be a surprise, but I know she’ll see it here first. You’re welcome, sister. You and Baby Silly can thank me SOON. So soon! ūüėÄ

To end this post on a serious note, apparently today is Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day. I will not be attending and I think it’s absolutely absurd. This is the 21st century, aren’t we supposed to be past ignorance, hatred, and bigotry? However, I can’t say I’m surprised about their stance based on the fact that they are a Christian organization. ¬†My question is, what gives a fast food chain the right to be an authority on such hot issues? Stick to making spicy chicken. And waffle fries. Our country has come a long way, but we seriously have so far to go.

Has your opinion of Chick-Fil-A changed at all? Will you still eat there in the future?

Marathon vs Social Life

Finding time to train for a marathon is tough. I don’t know about you, but I am by no means running at Olympic speeds here, so when I have an 18 mile run on my docket, I need to portion out a solid half-day to knock it out. All of my long runs tend to fall on weekends which is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because I don’t have to worry about it¬†interfering¬†with work, but a curse in that most of my family and closest friends live out of town. Since I am traveling almost every weekend, finding time to fit in my long runs has proven to be challenging.

You read A LOT about my social life on here, because I love doing fun things. If I don’t have plans, I tend to go stir crazy! Yet, I still need to run if I want to make it through my 26.2 in October without keeling over. Finding a balance between fun and serious training is difficult, but necessary.

Here some tips that I have implemented to ensure that I’m still training even on weekends where I am busy having fun:

Get a GPS Watch

I debated buying a GPS watch for years and years. I am SO glad that I finally have. A GPS watch is absolutely necessary for anyone who loves to both run and travel. I can literally run in any city now! I love that this watch tells me how far I’ve gone since I have to hit certain mile markers for each of my long runs. For example, I recently used this watch while at the beach. It’s so refreshing to run on the beach in the morning before it burns off. All I had to do was turn on my watch, run until I hit half of my distance, then turn around and run back to my hotel. Perfect!

Pack Your Running Shoes

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s actually a really helpful tip. If I bring my running shoes with me, I am more likely to go for a run (instead of having that last cocktail) just because I went through the effort to pack them in the first place. I hate wasting space in my bag, so I better use them if I brought them. Simple, but effective!

Plan Ahead

I love to be spontaneous. Really, I do! But, training for a marathon makes that tough. Making last minute plans is something I’m willing to give up (until October) for my own sanity. These days, I need to have my days planned out far in advance to make sure I fit everything in. I generally try to not make plans to go out the night before a long run, drinking + no sleep + 16 miles on the schedule = not happening. I can’t do it all!

Fuel Correctly

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Everyone always talks about how important it is to fuel your body correctly the night before a big race, but what about fueling correctly the night before a long run? It is just as important to eat the right foods during training as it is on the big day, so I try to be very careful to eat well(-ish) before all runs. Have you ever eaten a huge burger and fries the night before a 12 mile morning run? No? Well, take my word for it…that thing will sit in your stomach like a pound of bricks and you will NOT be comfortable. Avoid greasy, heavy foods and alcohol before long runs. Trust me, you’ll thank yourself later.

Don’t Eat Back All Your Calories

In addition to my last point about fuel, it’s important to avoid eating back all the calories you just burned…PLUS some!. This is something I have always struggled with, and is a common issue for many marathon runners. The mentality becomes, “Well, I just ran 15 miles, so I can eat WHATEVER I WANT TODAY!” Not true. I love to go out to eat, especially when I’m traveling and visiting my friends in different cities. Running gives me an excuse to order the least healthy (but most delicious) thing on the menu. Try to resist!

Remember to Have FUN!

Don’t get so sucked into marathon training that you don’t have a social life at all. Go out with friends, travel, visit new places, try new foods, and enjoy life! When I’m visiting friends, I try to get them in on the action too. Even if they are only willing to run 3 miles with me, that’s better than nothing. It’s always more fun to run with friends than by yourself! And you know what, enjoy that occasional margarita and don’t feel bad about it. Chances are…you’ve earned it!

How do YOU balance fitness goals with your social life?

Myrtle Beach Pt. 3 + Sugarland

Fortunately, no more scary plane crashes to report. The rest of our week at Myrtle Beach proved to be relaxing and fun!

Weather wise, we couldn’t have picked a nicer week. Not even one day of rain! The last two days were a bit windy, to the point where the sand was blowing all up in your face. On those two days we enjoyed a bit of time at the pool.

Check out this crazy perspective! Looking up from the pool deck.

Without question, one of the spots my family hits every year is Hawaiian Rumble mini golf. It’s our favorite course! Previous years have included getting caught in rainstorms, me getting escorted out by my mom (I was really young and threw a tantrum during a difficult put, give me a break), and nail biting finishes down to the last hole! This year proved no less, just fewer tantrums…by some. At the last hole my brother, Jackie, Brook, and I were all within one putt of each other. My brother won…boooo! At least we all beat Grammy. ūüôā

Mr. Bunny went a little cray the last night!

Okay, now before you go judging me, thinking I’m all weird (because I know you don’t already think that) my mom has this ceramic bunny that sat untouched in the living room for about 20 years. During their recent move, my brother aptly named him Mr. Bunny and has been moving him to various locations around the house. Mr. Bunny will randomly pop up on the couch reading my mom’s kindle, sometimes he shows up in the bathroom brushing his hair, other times he’s at the dinner table with a fork in his paw, the options are limitless. He joined us on his very first family vacation and showed us what YOLO was all about.

Now I’m sure you’re way less weirded out…I don’t care. My family rules.

As luck would have it, my good friends Marcus and Lindsey were also at the beach the same week! They were staying in a house with Marcus’ family just 15 miles away at Sunset Beach.

Sunset at Sunset Beach

They graciously invited Brook and I to visit and we had an awesome time eating Mexican food, drinking margaritas, playing cornhole, and walking the pier. Check it out, someone caught a shark!

They have the same facial expression.

Speaking of Marcus and Lindsey, remember how I failed at taking pictures the weekend of their wedding? Well, their photographer’s pictures are posted now! Check it out:

Pretty bridesmaids

Goofy groomsmen

Fave!

All pictures were taken by Essential Sunshine Photography. You can see the rest: here.

It was great to see them this past week!

So, anyway, Brook and I decided that we weren’t quite ready for our vacation to end. We had one more day to utilize before heading back to work and we were determined to make the most of it! We found out that Brook’s favorite band, Sugarland, was playing at Jiffy Lube Live on Sunday night. So we found last minute tickets and Brook made the 5 hour drive up to northern VA (and I made the less impressive 45 minute drive).

None of my concert pictures really turned out (do they ever?) but the show was awesome! Super high energy the whole time. I didn’t know too many of the words, but Brook knew them all…die-hard much? The highlight for me was when they busted out a Matt Nathanson cover! He’s one of my favorite artists and I was caught off guard. They rocked it! Jennifer Nettles has an amazing voice, and she was sporting a cute little baby bump too.

Another amazing feat? We got out of the parking lot in less than an hour! Which was great considering Brook needed to drive 5 hours home. Crazy woman. Impromptu concert, SUCCESS!

What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve done lately?

PS. This post is so random. I kinda love it!

MB Vacay Pt. 2: The Plane Crash

Confused by the title of this post? Wondering if it’s a joke? Well, it’s not. I saw a plane crash yesterday.

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We were enjoying a beautiful day on the beach, just like everyday. Brook and I had just returned from a walk, and everyone was hanging out under my family’s tent. All of a sudden, my brother-in-law, Robert says, “Isn’t that plane flying too low?”

I looked up and it all happened so fast. One of those airplanes that carry a banner for the beachwear stores took a nose dive right into the ocean close to the shore. We couldn’t even believe what we saw, my mom actually said, “Is this real?” It was just so wild.

People and lifeguards alike went sprinting into the ocean. I saw the pilot emerge from the plane and wave his arms for help. The lifeguards got to him and pulled him to shore. The tail of the plane bobbed for a few minutes before going under.

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That’s the tail of the plane in the ocean.

Emergency response then showed up, and spent the majority of yesterday blocking that section of the beach off. They still haven’t gotten the plane out of the ocean yet, and to be honest I’m not sure how they plan to do it.

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It was crazy to witness something like that, but at the same time I feel very fortunate that no one was hurt. I’m happy the pilot survived and was okay. I’m also thankful that he landed off shore rather than on the beach considering so many people could have been hurt. Craziest thing I’ve ever witnessed.

Anyway on to happier things. Besides that, the trip has been enjoyable. Last night we went to Liberty Brewery and Steakhouse. I got the largest rack of ribs I’ve ever seen in my life. They were awesome though!

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We’ve also been to Fat Tuesday for drinks a few times. It’s awesome now that everyone is 21 and we can all (well except my sister because she’s pregnant) go out for drinks together. My mom is obsessed with the jello shots!

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The only downfall to the trip is that it’s been so crowded everywhere we go. It took us 30 minutes the other night just to find parking at Broadway at the Beach! And most times, because there’s so many people using the network, my cell phone service has been spotty. Those are things I can live with though.

Well, I’m about to go ride a banana boat now. Let’s hope that today is less eventful than yesterday!

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever seen?

Myrtle Beach Vacation Pt. 1

Hello from super, sunny Myrtle Beach, South Carolina!

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The weather has been beautiful thus far. Hot, but not a cloud in the sky!

Rewind back to Friday, my family woke up at the crack of dawn (aka 5:30am) to pack up and start the 9 hour drive from Maryland to South Carolina.

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Check out that sweet packing job.

The trip felt loooong. I got pretty bored, despite the fact that 90% of the time I was jamming out to 90’s pop music. My poor family.

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Anyway, the drive was worth it because vacation has been AWESOME so far.

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We’ve been lounging by the beach most of the day. The only time we really spend in the condo is the hour we go up for lunch.

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At night we typically go out to eat.

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And drink.

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The motto of the week (somewhat ironically) is YOLO!

Last night we went to Carolina Roadhouse, which is a restaurant I discovered last time I was at the beach just a few months ago. We enjoyed some delicious margaritas (seriously, they are the best ever).

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After dinner, we usually play mini golf.

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Adam may have gotten a hole in one on this whole, but just ask him who the overall winner was. Hint: it was me!

Marathon training in vacation mode has proved to be somewhat interesting. But I packed my running shoes and have been able to do about 6 miles in the morning before the beaches get crowded. Beach running is tougher than regular running, mainly on the calves. And the fact that I sweat just about a gallon of water out of my body just by taking my first step.

Oh well, I’m pretty psyched it’s only Monday. I still have a whole week to work on my tan…which is coming along nicely, for the record.

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Gotta go enjoy the sun!

What do you usually do on vacation?

My Travel Wish List

My family takes a vacation together every year. For as long as I can even remember we’ve spent a week (sometimes 2!) down in Myrtle Beach, SC. Even when we lived in Seattle, we would fly back just to go on our beach trip! This is one of my favorite traditions, and I hope that one day when I have a family, I can continue it. Perhaps we won’t always go to the same beach, but I like the concept of a yearly family vacation. As I gear up to head out next week, I got to thinking about the top places in the world I’d like to travel.

So here it is, my travel wish-list:

Bora Bora

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I mean, come on…need I say more? This place seriously looks unreal. After watching Couples Retreat, I vowed that I would go there (if I ever win the lottery) on my honeymoon. I’m a huge beach¬†aficionado and this looks like the ULTIMATE. Can you imagine snorkeling in that crystal blue water? Waking up to that view? Yes, please!

Italy

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Look at me. No, really, just look at me. I am Italian through and through. One day, I would love to be able to visit the place of my ancestors, see the sights, and eat some amazing Italian food. Yep, that sounds like a lot of fun to me.

Vale, Colorado

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This might seem weird after seeing Bora Bora and Italy on the list, but I’ve never been skiing before. I KNOW, RIGHT? Hold the phone. Snowboarding, yes. Skiing, no. It’s one of my goals to learn how to ski and eventually go to Colorado to take advantage of the best slopes this country has to offer. Doesn’t it look like the perfect holiday vacation? And if I fail miserably at skiing, I’ll just hang out in the lodge and drink spiked hot chocolate. Either way, I’m still winning.

Australia/New Zealand

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I lump these two together only because I would do them both in the same trip considering they are literally on the other side of the world. I’ve always wanted to explore Australia and see Sydney, especially since Finding Nemo (I’m so cool, I know). More recently, I’ve had an itching to also hit up New Zealand. Two of my good friends have recently taken trips there and said that it’s the adventure of a lifetime! Apparently, everyone is so friendly and the vibe is really laid back, which fits in perfectly with my way of life.

London

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I’ll admit, I’ve already been to London. But what you might not know is that London was absolutely my favorite city I’ve visited. It’s just so accessible; the chunnel from Paris to London was convenient, the Tube was clean and¬†efficient¬†(way more so than the Metro anyway), and the train out of Kings Cross Station was simple to figure out. Plus I got to see the famous Platform 9 3/4, Harry Potter geek much? Not only that, but there’s so much history and culture in this city. Seeing the Tower Bridge, Globe Theatre,¬†Parliament,¬†Piccadilly¬†Square, etc was super cool. I loved that I could get fish ‘n chips and a beer at any pub on any corner. I, obviously, could go on and on but I’ll refrain. I can’t wait to go back!

Now to work on that whole winning-the-lottery-so-I-can-pay-for-all-this thing!

Where in the world is Carmen Sandeigo your ideal destination?

Super Sweaty

Big news everyone! On Saturday morning I woke up at 6:06am WITHOUT an alarm…and didn’t even go back to sleep! Who says I can’t be a morning person? Oh, wait, I did. Anyway, I’m thankful that something in my body triggered me awake because I totally misset my alarm on Friday night. I was trying to wake up at 6am to knock out 12 miles before the predicted 105 degree temperatures set in. And guess what, I did.

This was quite possibly the slowest/worst run of my entire life. I had every intention of running this 12 miles for time, but right around mile 2 I realized that it was going to be a struggle for survival. The heat and humidity, even at 6am, made it hard to even breath. Around mile 4 I began to feel sharp twinges in my back and at mile 5-6, I was convinced my ankle was going to fall off. This happens on occasion and I think it’s a result of the numerous times I sprained and partially tore ligaments in my ankles when I played soccer and basketball.

I stopped back at my apartment after the 6 mile mark to regroup myself, filled up a water bottle and then continued on for the final 6 miles of torture.¬†I listened to my body cues and took it easy. My back pain disappeared and when I was stretching my ankles, I felt something pop into place so that didn’t give me any further problems. Miles 7-9 were…pleasant, if you can even believe that. I knew the final 3 would be tough because the temperatures were rising¬†RAPIDLY. And I could feel it.

EFF YOU HEAT!

Once I hit my turnaround point at mile 9, I knew I had only 2 options. Either: 1) be airlifted back to my apartment, OR 2) run back. I opted for the latter choice as I thought renting a helicopter may put a huge dent in my bank account. Maybe next time. As expected, the last 3 miles SUCKED. I walked up 2 big hills because I thought my legs would straight-up give out if I tried to run them, ouch.

Wednesday’s sweaty 8 miler was child’s play compared to Saturday’s 12 miler. I’m mildly convinced that by the end, I was running dangerously close to having 0% water left in my body. I’m typically a light/moderate sweater, so you KNOW it was a hot/rough run when I look like this at the end:

Ignore that smile on my face, I was actually anything but happy at the time (it’s all an illusion) and there literally wasn’t a dry spot on my quick-dry t-shirt. So sexy, I know. Come and get it, boys!

Anyway, 12 miles is 12 miles no matter how rough. I’m glad to have that one under my belt since (I hope) it won’t be as hot and humid on marathon day in October. Summer training is stupid.

After my 2+ hours of torture, I headed up north to visit my parents and stuff my face with ice cream and mead. Typical. We did a tour de Maryland of sorts. Our first stop was an ice creamery that my brother heard of while visiting a farmer’s market in Baltimore. It’s called South Mountain Creamery and they are the #1 stop (of 7) on the Maryland Ice Cream tour. This place was on a farm out in the middle of nowhere, but the homemade ice cream was…not to get all 90’s on you, but…DA BOMB! I had the Moo Tracks, which was a rich chocolate with peanut butter cups and real peanuts. Om nom!

Next stop was to Orchid Cellar, or more commonly known as The Place My Family Learned About MEAD! We went taste testing and learned a ton about the process of making mead. I ended up buying 2 bottles to take home with me.

Now I’m just gearing up for the week ahead. I hear that the temps are supposed to cool off into the 80’s. I can handle that! Plus, I have a ton of miles to run and lots to do before I leave for the beach next week with my family. Can’t wait!

How did you beat the heat this weekend?

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