Beachin’ Weekend

I had a beachin’ weekend! (Yeah, I started with a pun, NOT SORRY). My weekend kicked off on Friday night as I headed home, enjoyed a glass of wine with a chicken stirfry, and some tv catch-up. It was glorious to go to bed and know that I had nothing planned for the next day. And then to wake up on Saturday morning, then roll back on over for a little bit longer. When I did get up, I enjoyed a pancake breakfast- all from scratch, using my peanut butter pancake recipe.

Since switching my workouts to the morning, I’m able to have a weekend day as a rest day and Saturday was the chosen one. It was SO nice out, like 85, and all I wanted was to be outside. How can you not celebrate Earth Day when nature gifts us with this!?:

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However, drink enough water before you leave the house, boys and girls, especially if you’re going to lounge out in the sun. I had a wonderful vision of me laying my towel out on the beach and getting in some quality writing time.

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What ended up happening was I sweated profusely, melted the chocolate in my trail mix, and suffered from a headache. Out of principle, I stuck it out for the hour because I had paid for the parking (not too much thankfully), but I needed to not be there. The water I had didn’t even ease my headache, nor did going to a shopping mall and Target! When I’m not in the mood to shop, you know there’s a problem. Once I got home, I drank a lot of water and made my dinner.

Once I was feeling better, my friend Brad came over to “start” Big Little Lies. I say “start” because we watched four or five episodes already. Had we started earlier, I think we would have finished. Maybe he won’t notice if I finish without him…we’re still on season two of Downton Abbey because we were waiting on each other.

On Sunday morning, I made some scrambled eggs and waffles, drank a ton of water, and headed out for a run/walk. When I started, I didn’t think much of where I was going, but eventually, I did find my way to the beach. I’m four miles away from the beach, which is amazing, so of course I have to take advantage. I mean, look at this.

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The beach is (9 times out of 10) my happy place. There is something so imperfectly beautiful about waves crashing onto the sand that moves me. Unfortunately, I didn’t have my writing tools with me, but it was nice to spend some time relaxing, meditating, and unplugged.

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But, once you run/walk four miles to the beach, you also have to run four miles back. I had anticipated this because I’m not a complete idiot, but had I planned better, I would have brought water or money to buy water. The journey home was a little more unpleasant, but not altogether bad. The flowers must have loved the rainy LA winter because these flowers went on for acres.

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By the time I got home, I was sweating from my eyeballs and really needed water, but it was an accomplishment! In the end, it was a perfect four mile run, four mile walk split, so I was pleased. After a much needed shower and rehydration, I was a hungry girl. I headed out to a local hole-in-the-wall spot for delicious Indian curry, rice, veggies, and naan. So good! The price wasn’t bad either, so I’ll definitely be back!

The rest of my Sunday evening was spent writing and prepping for the week ahead. Have a fantastic Monday!!

weekend, workout, and waffles

And here we are again at Monday…no complaints because I had a fine weekend for myself.

On Friday, I’d been battling a headache, so I went to the gym after work to try and work it off. When in doubt, I usually can fight things off with a solid workout, and I was right! There’s nothing quite like a hard-hitting strength workout followed up by a sweaty run to get you into the Friday vibes. The rest of Friday included a casual evening of good food, tv watching, and SLEEP. I cannot emphasize my love for going to sleep on a Friday night knowing there is nothing pressing on Saturday. GLORIOUS.

The difference between my Friday night dinner:

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Is in the side dish:

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Both were delicious and celebratory as Saturday was National Waffle Day.

On Saturday, I nailed a shoulder, ab/adductor, glute, and core workout before hitting the spin bike for a HIIT ride. I walked to and from the gym to fit in some extra rays (I’m hoping my east-coasters will find me TAN when I go home for a wedding next month – if you comment on it then, you get a cookie because then I know you’re reading my blog). Next, I headed to an LA staple, the Getty Museum in the Hollywood Hills (I think). My friend and I took the architecture tour which was interesting. Art is not my thing exactly, but I have more maturity than I did in the third grade (sort-of) and was able to appreciate it more. Would still rather be seeing a Broadway show to fill my culture quota, but I’m afraid that the closest this girl gets to “cultured” is pop.

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That view though!

My friend and I ate dinner at a cheesy Italian restaurant before driving back. We passed a man dressed in full Jester costume, with make-up, hanging out under the freeway, and it was spooky. Yay for expressing yourself? So long as there’s no nefarious deeds being done.

This is what I enjoyed while watching my show, curled up on the couch.

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Yup, that is fact. It has a slightly different texture than regular ice cream, but it’s still delicious. For the record, I did not eat it all in one sitting, although, I totally could have.

I enjoyed sleeping in again on Sunday before I woke up for some pancakes. I’m obsessed with my small pan because it makes the perfect omelette, as evidenced in the two above pictures. After I digested, it was time for a run.

I wish I snapped a picture because I ran along the bike path (it’s allowed, I checked), which is by a river. It eventually leads to the ocean, but I wasn’t up for that yet. It’s quick-ish on a bike, but a bit far for a run (for me) to and fro. I also got in some at-home yoga, which felt like a nice stretch and extended my sweat time for a bit.

For fuel, I gobbled down a pb&j, showered, then headed out to treat myself to a massage. It was just what I needed. At work, I am constantly on my feet and running around, and I add some grueling, yet satisfying workouts six days a week, so my body needed some love. For whatever reason, I carry my stress (which to be fair, isn’t a lot, but it exists) in my top left shoulder. When I was at a job I was stressing over a few years ago, I had to ask the masseuse to stop as he prodded my knots, but these ones were easy-peasy.

The stress-relief lasted until I tried to find a parking spot at Trader Joes, but fortunately, it didn’t take too long and I quickly grabbed my things and got home.

It was time for whatever I was making in this bad-boy (lunches for the week and Sunday night’s dinner).

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Chicken chili, served this evening with a handful of tortilla chips.

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Chock full of veggies – collard greens, red bell peppers, zucchini, and corn – beans – black and red – and chicken! SO good and SO easy. I had shopped the night before for a few items I needed so that I could toss everything together in the morning. Meal prep = simple and healthy with a crockpot.

The rest of the evening was productive with laundry and writing. I’ve given myself a homework assignment that I’ll fill you in on later in the week. Don’t fret, it’s the good kind.

Happy Monday!

 

sunset in stages

I don’t think I can effectively speak to how beautiful California is. I am constantly amazed by the sights and wonders of this state and I know I’ve only ever seen a small part of it. To cap off my weekend, I went to Griffith Observatory to catch the sunset. Every night should end like this:

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Magnificent.

This weekend was the perfect amount of relaxing and active with as much time spent outside as I possibly could get. This weather is the kind I expected when I moved out here.

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Sights like these make Monday’s arrival just a little sweeter.

new beginnings

Before I begin anything, I want to wish HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE GREATEST PERSON WHO EVER LIVED: my mom.

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You’re the best and the day doesn’t deserve your greatness, although it should be celebrated anyway! Love you!

Welcome to 2017! I’ve been on break for the past ten days and it’s been wonderful being home, but after a lot of relaxation and eating, I’m ready to get back into my routine.

I don’t really have New Years resolutions, but I’m looking forward to being more mindful and present this year. I tend to be frantically go-go-going and I think it heightens my anxiety. Sometimes, you have to relax and watch the world around you. So let’s go!

I’ll start the first post of 2017 with a recap of my vacation. It started with a day of biking at the beach. The day was a bit dreary, but the wind kicked up as I hit the beach and it was hard to pedal. This is a little scary looking, no?

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By the time I got back and finished getting ready, it was time to get to the airport super early. Traveling around the holidays is no joke. And traveling overnight means no sleep for me who cannot sleep on planes. Oh well. I read Amy Schumer’s book instead. This is the view back to Boston.

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Cold!

It was Christmas Eve morning by the time I arrived and it was time to celebrate. Note: thanks for the early pick-up and drop-off from the airport mom and dad!

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Lots of quality times with family was enjoyed. (Without pictures, I guess).

As well as time with friends.

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Finished off the year the way I started it, with a run outside!

*On the brink of 2016. (So innocent, so naive).

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It was colder and snowier this year, but watching for ice just made it more adventurous…

*On the brink of 2017. (A little more weathered).

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My New Year’s smooch this year.

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And before I knew it, it was time to catch my flight back to LA.

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All I wanted to do was sleep when I got home, but I didn’t want to disrupt my routine, so instead, I cleaned and got organized. Felt good! I stopped at the gym to fit in some strength training before heading out for a hike.

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The sun was not awaiting my arrival.

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After grocery shopping, I meal prepped and made dinner. Ravioli atop chicken sausage, spinach, red bell pepper, and zucchini. Ah my Gah, delicious! And it so happens to make up my lunches for the week as well.

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Oh, and yeah, I should be more consistent with my blog.

Shake It Off

After a few weeks’ hiatus, I’m back! I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Mine was busy as I hopped on a plane Tuesday night 9pm LA time, flew into New York City for a two hour delay, then made the final leg of my trip to Boston, arriving around 9am Boston time. I flew back to LA on Friday morning, so it was a whirlwind, but wonderful trip home. Though it was more of a teaser for Christmas break, I’m so happy to have been able to spend time with my family, eat delicious food, and relax.

I believe this picture was taken as my mom told me my head was too big.

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I have enjoyed my time in LA thus far, but I’ve felt out of sorts and overwhelmed these past few weeks, as I believe I’ve mentioned, but I decided I’m shaking myself out of it. Part of that is getting back into my writing routine. Life is busy and it’s hard to get into a routine after a long day of work, but writing is important to me and it’s why I moved out here, so I have to do it! Doing it!

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Upon my arrival back to LA, my Lyft driver gave me a gallon of some strange water she was promoting. Apparently, I am supposed to drink it within three days or the live cultures will die. I’m not drinking water that has living beings in it thank you very much. What a welcome back though!

Friday found me in a vegetative state. Had I known it would be the only warm, sunny day of the weekend, I may have felt more motivated to get up, but it started on a long plane journey and I was tired. Plus, my new bike- because yes, one of the blah things that have happened to me in the past few weeks is that my bike was stolen…out of my gated apartment building…where it was locked up- had loose handlebars and I didn’t have the tool to fix it yet, so really, I didn’t want to fall over them.

Regardless of any activity I should have done, Gilmore Girls dropped on Netflix and nothing else mattered. I watched two of the four-part series, napped, cooked dinner, then watched the other two. I loved it, smiled the entire time, and teared up a few times. As the creator/writer said that she ended it the way she always wanted to end it, I fear those last four words, however cryptic and cliff hanger-y, are it for the show, for real this time. I wouldn’t be opposed to more though, please and thank you!

On Saturday, I was on the metro to meet my friend for a hike in Malibu when the skies opened. Apparently, the only things to do in Malibu are go to the beach and hike, so we drove around for a bit before heading over to Santa Monica.

PSA: Don’t all-you-can-eat sushi. Sushi is not something you should ever overeat. Our reasoning for going to this restaurant was to try different types of sushi, but you had to eat all of what you ordered and would have to pay full price for any leftovers. We ordered two rolls too many and I had a piece in my mouth when my body decided it was too much and I had to spit it out. I was full, but it wasn’t that overly stuffed feeling so much as this is not something you should ever have too much of. The mayo-laden sushi glistened at me menacingly and thankfully the waitress took pity on us and took it away as our little secret and we didn’t have to pay. I am now on a six month hiatus from sushi, if not more.

After we ate ourselves silly, it was time to move around. We ended up doing some window shopping in Santa Monica and took in the sights.

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I should have snapped a picture of the pier all lit up at night, but shoulda coulda woulda and I did-ah not. Ha.

On Sunday, I woke up to more rain, so I cooked an omelet with an english muffin and fruit before heading over to the gym for my first workout in a week. It felt good! Nothing inspires motivation better than a kick ass workout.

In the afternoon, I went back to Santa Monica with my friend Brad where we got some writing done before heading back, making tacos for dinner, and readying for the work week ahead.

I’m in a better place and thinking positive thoughts. Sometimes, it’s good to struggle because it gives you some perspective and forces you to work that much harder. A hug from mom will heal anything. Plus, it doesn’t suck that it’s Christmas spirit time! No better excuse to fit in some shopping.

Happy Monday!

One Month!

Happy one month anniversary to me and LA!

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In some ways, I can’t believe I’ve already lived here for a month, but in others I feel like I’ve been here forever. It has something to do with how things came together job-wise, but also, life flies! Take advantage and live it while we can!* Chasing dreams isn’t always glamorous and it’s certainly not easy, and no matter the long-term successes and failures, the journey is worth it. Cliches have truth, friends!

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*Even if it scares you and believe me, this still scares me.

If you’ll remember, I am a personal trainer and so I’m used to standing on my feet all day, but the change of foot wear and profession has taken a hit to my feet. They are sore! After a day at work and a run, this is my total for the day:

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I’ll never complain about getting to move around, but I think they might deserve a pedicure soon- maybe to celebrate my one month anniversary!

Breakfast:

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Lunch was quinoa, black beans, brussels sprouts, and broccoli.

Dinner:

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We’re halfway through the week!

One Day More!

I’ve got that Les Miserables song rocketing through my mind right now.

One day out now and my tummy is bubbling in perpetual nerves! It’s all about the last minute touches to packing now, and moving cross-country, ya gotta be concise. I’m not a good packer, I always want to bring everything. Luckily, half my wardrobe is staying behind as I will not be suffering through the usual New England winter, probably.

Although check this nonsense out!

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I checked out the Los Angeles forecast and noticed it was slightly chillier there than it was here in good old Boston. What the what? Although, I’m just happy for relief from the humidity.

It was gorgeous out yesterday, the sun and a slight breeze lending to some perfect September weather. I took full advantage- and had to improvise my workout without a car- and got running outside.

New sneakers, new outlook on life, as far as I’m concerned. It’s amazing the difference you don’t even notice until you’re not running in threadbare shoes.

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My last trek around the neighborhood, for now, was a great one. Strong pace, strong legs, controlled breathing, and just soaking in all the love and familiarity. New things are scary, friends, exciting, but it’s safe to think of all my emotions in capital letters right now.

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After my run, it was time for my last work day at my beloved Y. I started out as a member for years, I’m talking pre-weight loss days, and I can’t think of another place I’ve frequented more often (other than my home) in the last four years. A gym, the right kind, becomes a safe place. I can’t imagine working out anywhere else, except now, I’ll have to do just that. Sadness, but also, it provided me a place to build my inner and outer strength, gifted me an opportunity to pursue a dream and build my Personal Training practice, and thanks to that, and the people who work there, I feel ready to conquer this next adventure.

I’m heading there shortly for a final workout and I’ll probably cry, but I have no regrets!

After work, I enjoyed dinner with my friend Molly at our favorite place, finishing the night off with some ice cream!

The next time we check in, I’ll be in sunny California. Things are happening, people!