Fun Facts Friday

Hola friendly people!

Let’s get down to business shall we??

1. Being stranded while holiday traveling makes for a great story.

Long Trail in Springfield, VTWe set out for CT on Wednesday afternoon and made it to Springfield, VT before a series of unfortunate events (seeing 6.5 cars off the road, finally getting stuck ourselves and then miraculously getting pulled out by a cop) forced us to grab a room at the Holiday Inn Express. Fortunately for us they had one last room, unfortunately for us it had one king bed but a massive jacuzzi tub for us three adults to fight over. Quite honestly it could have had only a sleeper sofa and we would have been happy to just be off the roads. We made the best of it with copious amounts of Long Trail Ale and gaming… because that’s what adults do 😉

2. I had a glorious Thanksgiving weekend once we actually got to Connecticut 🙂

Zach and I Thanksgiving

PictionaryWe ate food, we drank wine, we had a killer game of Pictionary (after Bob moved off the board) that the boys definitely should have lost and we ate more food. We also played a ton of Heads Up! (a game EVERYONE needs to download now if you haven’t already). I managed to get a bunch of Christmas shopping done plus brand new coat from Lord & Taylor for only $63.00!! We also had an incredible Italian meal at Biagio Osteria which unfortunately for you guys all of the photos taken were too blurry to be put up.

It’s always tough to be so far away from my family over the holidays but I’m so fortunate to have Zach’s family welcome me into theirs 🙂

3. I am almost done with all of my Christmas shopping!

For Christmas everyone is getting my opinion

I have a terrible history of being an extreme last minute gift buyer (and broke) so this year I decided to start early and start online. I’ve never been much of an online shopper but armed with a very detailed list for each person, my paypal account and a junk email address I set out before Thanksgiving to get the party started. I still have a few people on the list but the major items have all been purchased and I can’t wait to see their faces 🙂

4. I have an unhealthy obsession with the Romanovs.

My NightstandI’m currently re-reading The Last Days of the Romanovs by Helen Rappaport in preparation for her new book about the Romanov sisters. There is just something about this incredibly sad time, the strength of a family and all of the pieces of the puzzle that got them where they ended up that I find fascinating. My collection of Romanov and Tsar related books is a little out of hand but I love it.

5. I signed up for a monthly yoga membership at Sangha Studio!!!

Sangha Studio

I consider it a Christmas present to myself! So far I’ve been to two classes this week and I’m planning on making the third tomorrow afternoon. The class times are flexible enough to fit perfectly into my crazy schedule and so far the two instructors I’ve taken a class with have been so sweet and helpful. I know I’ve been saying for awhile now how much I’d like to practice more regularly and I’m so happy I finally got a membership. Much more to come on this place 🙂

I also began PT this week and I’m sincerely hoping that both PT & yoga combined will help me go from an 87 year old’s lower back issues to a 25 year old’s!

Happy Weekending Everyone!

How is your Christmas shopping coming?

Have you played Heads Up!???

Studio 208: Pilates Class

Hey there people! I’m writing this post while eating a small box of junior mints, a box of junior mints I just earned finishing a brand spankin’ new (to me) fitness class over at Studio 208. For those of you who have followed along since the beginning (I’m looking at you Mom and Dad) you know that I took my very first barre class over at Studio 208 and it rocked my socks. I still get the feels over how much I enjoyed that class…

Studio 208So after a few weeks of writing their Pilates Plus class on my schedule I finally made it over there for today’s class and I am so glad that I did.

Pilates is one of those exercises that I absolutely love the way that it feels and how challenging it is but in all honestly I probably haven’t legitimately practiced in years.  One Christmas during high school I got a Windsor Pilates DVD and I did it so much that to this day I could do it from memory.  Let’s be real though, a teacher in person is far better for assisting my shaky form than a recording!

Having not done much by way of mat work in so long I was feeling pretty nervous that I would feel super out of place but thankfully that wasn’t the case.  Sure, I was incredibly inflexible when it came time to keep the legs up. Sure, I wanted to remove my shaking arms from my body when we were using 2lb hand weights. Sure, I was again sticking my tongue out to “focus” during the core work. But then there were those awesome times where my breathing was in check, my form solid (ish) and I was rocking a legit smile on my face.

The instructor was great, she had this bubbly personality and seemed to know everyone in there… regulars = sign of a good instructor. The class flowed in typical Pilates fashion not focusing on one thing for too long but making sure to work each body part out well.  When I got off the mat at the end of the class my legs felt like jelly and even only an hour out my arms are sore just typing this- it feels awesome!

I would highly recommend the classes at Studio 208. The next one I really want to try is Barre-lates so I can combine my rekindled love of Pilates with my new found love of Barre. Wins all around!

In general I really want to continue Pilates because a strong core of course helps with running  but it is also crucial for the upcoming snowboard season which I could not be more excited for!  Some people work out for beach season, I work out for snow season 🙂

Do you enjoy Pilates?

Have you taken a new fitness class lately?

Do you do any winter sports?

Fun Facts Friday

I shared all the stuff in my personal life yesterday so today I will turn these fun facts into 5 things I really need/want to try…

1. I need to try one of these Mango Green Tea Smoothies from A Spicy Perspective

Mango Smoothie with Green Tea! #smoothie #greentea

Have you guys ever used tea in your smoothies? I don’t think I have but I love mango and I drink Numi Gunpowder Green at work everyday so I’m very intrigued. Definitely on my to do list!

2. I need this print off of Etsy to go up in my house ASAP

Rocky Top Graphic Print - 11" x 17" Digital

It’s the truth people, it’s the truth. Also, can anyone else spend hours at a time on Etsy? The things people come up with are absolutely amazing!

3. I need this Nike pullover for my cooler weather runs

Nike Reflective Element Half-Zip Women's Running Top

Or perhaps a cheaper version? Now that fall is right around the corner I will definitely need to up my game on running gear.  Those 5 year old shorts and over-sized shirt just won’t cut it in Vermont’s fall season.

4. I would like to try a rowing class at Row VT

With that said, I am also terrified of a rowing class as I feel like my arms would fall off after 4 minutes. I don’t know about you but my arms are straight up noodles!  According to the schedule they offer a few different styles of class one of which includes mat work which I feel like I would enjoy. I do love me a challenge so I definitely intend on checking them out!

5. Self-Explanatory

Ain't no telling whats gonna come out next lol

That my friends, is a real fact.

Have you ever taken a rowing class?

Any runners out there with a favorite fall weather clothing item?

Recapping: A Fantastic Wedding Weekend

So I’m recapping my weekend on a Thursday… worst blogger ever award goes to me. I planned to do this Monday night when we got home but then I got distracted with fantasy football drafts, Tuesday would have been good but I was playing board games and Wednesday was an under the weather type of day… so even though it’s practically a new weekend here you go!  As many of you know I attended a wedding in Connecticut this weekend and I could not have asked for a better way to spend the long weekend 🙂

Some highlights…

A Saturday morning spin class at Fairfield’s Zen Ride I’ve been to Zen Ride once before (first class is free) so when I knew I’d be in Fairfield the night before I signed up for an 8:15 am “ZenTensity” class that proved to be well, intense!  If I’m being honest it was a little pricey but I absolutely got bang for my buck.  The instructor Terre was high energy and high reward, just what I needed to kick off a weekend of eating and drinking.

ZenRide Spinning Studio

A Rehearsal day (yes, day) that was amazeballs.  Zach’s hometown friend Jeff and his bride-to-be Kaitlin pulled out all the stops for the rehearsal day and I was so happy to have been included.  From meeting at the venue to hanging out at a the Arrigoni Winery including a wine tasting for the entire bridal party (which I think was a great idea) it was one of those days you hope to repeat again.  The bride had a full on itinerary… you know how much of a planner I am so I was all about this. Kaitlin actually has a blog that I found a little while ago (basically I was like I’m going to your wedding, I should look you up on the Facebook… oh shit is that a blog? Hellsssss yeahhh it is! End scene) anyway it is called For Love Of Carrots that you guys must promise me you will check out!!  She gives great advice for not only athletes but also overall health and well being.  After this weekend I definitely trust her opinion on food plus she posts pictures of their adorable dog, Brady. Win! Jeff and Kaitlin        The happy couple at their Rehearsal.

GroomsmenA handsome bunch of groomsmen.

Zach and ISometimes we clean up well, sometimes.

Arrigoni WineryThe wines were delicious, my favorite was the River Bend. We did damage on a couple of bottles of that!

An upgraded hotel room with a tub fit for a Queen.  There isn’t much to be said about this except WHO DOESN’T LOVE A FREE UPGRADE??? In all my 6 years in the hotel business I’ve never been upgraded… I didn’t think I would be as excited as I was but look at me writing in capital letters about this.

Rehearsal dinner at the best cupcake shop in Connecticut. No seriously, it’s been voted on. I’ve already talked about NoRA Cupcakes in my 4th of July post but seriously they had their rehearsal dinner actually AT NoRA’s.  Talk about a good time! The room was laid back but so fun, they had a belly dancing video on loop next to Finding Nemo because why not? The food was catered from I have no idea where and was delicious but the star of the night was this massive chocolate cupcake that I ate half of and basically wanted it to be my best friend.

NoRA's CupcakesI felt this was the only face appropriate for my feelings towards this cupcake. You are welcome.

A solo trip to Target. The hole that I feel inside not having a Target in Vermont is far too large to put into words. I tend to make sure if I go out of town that I can make a trip to Target and I could easily spend hours in each section. I understand how people can be like “what is so special about Target?” actually no, I don’t understand that thought process because to me that’s like saying “what is so special about a puppy?” and I’m just not having it.  Anyway this particular run was less than fruitful but still it was exactly how I wanted to kill the day pre-wedding time while Zach was off getting his groomsman on.

Spending as much time as I wanted getting ready for the wedding.  The shuttle didn’t leave until about 4:45 which meant I had all the time in the world to get ready (i.e. dance around in my sweatpants for hours) and I took advantage of it!  I mentioned before that I had ordered my dress online from Lily Boutique so I of course had to snap a few pictures before leaving the room. I am quite pleased with how it turned out!

Lily Boutique DressI loved the color!

A bus ride with another fellow blogger Caitlin from Cait Plus Ate! Caitlin was so sweet and remembered me from the engagement party we went to last summer.  I’ve also been reading her blog for a couple of months now and she does an awesome job of sharing advice and giving reviews of fitness classes as well as restaurants & bars around the Boston/CT area.  Bonus: her dad is a Tennessee alum and her little sister is a current student. The minute she said Go Vols I knew we’d hit it off 😉

An absolutely gorgeous wedding that not even the rain storms could ruin. The wedding was held at the Wadsworth Mansion and while it had to be pushed under the tent at the last minute, not even the crazy storm could distract from the beautiful couple and their even more beautiful vows.  I don’t know the couple that well but in just hearing those vows you don’t need even need to know them to understand them. So adorable!

Then of course there was the beverage consumption, the incredible dinner and more ridiculous dance moves than you could possibly hope to see.

Wedding CoupleBlushing bride and some of her groomsmen.

Zach and IThe only photo of Zach and I and it’s blurry/post rain and dancing. Of course. Good thing we have another wedding this month to try again…

As I mentioned before,  it was an awesome way to spend a Labor Day weekend!

Cheers to adding the H 🙂

Have you ever been to an all-day Rehearsal? This was my first but I gotta say it was a cool and different way to get the bridal party together.

Favorite cupcake place?? This is actually important to answer.. because then I can go find it.

Fun Facts Friday

“It’s finally Friday I’m free again
I got my motor running for a wild weekend!”

Yes, I did just start this post with some George Jones lyrics… welcome to my life. I’m not cool.

1. Sangha Studio in downtown Burlington is my new favorite yoga studio.

Studio  If you read my last post you know I signed up for my first class in quite some time yesterday and it did not disappoint! In Colorado I had a yoga instructor through the school’s gym that I thought was amazing.  She was so patient but very focused on the words she used and knew exactly how to get you into that yogi mindset.  Yesterday at Sangha Studio’s 12pm Flow Yoga class I felt that exact same connection to the style as well as the instructor.  The music started out very traditionally and then it progressively got more hip-hop focused, a first for me in a yoga class but I absolutely loved it!  I wondered if the other lady that attended the class enjoyed it because it was definitely a different soundtrack than what is expected but at the end even she said it was great!

Sadly the instructor for that day was a fill in and does not normally teach any classes. I was super bummed that I didn’t get her name because I really did enjoy her style of teaching but oh well I’m looking forward to many more classes at Sangha. Bonus each class is only $10 AND on Sundays they do community yoga where each class offered is by donation. Definitely check it out 🙂

2. I could eat a sandwich at every meal and be perfectly happy.

Mirabelle'sAh yes, the beloved Mirabelles’ sandwich. So happy you made it into my stomach yesterday.  I normally reserve a trip to Mirabelles for their amazing chocolate macarons but post yoga class I decided I need something more substantial (in addition to the chocolate macarons of course) and this Avocado and Cheddar sandwich was awesome.

Seriously though, we have a sign in our kitchen that I made that just says “We eat a lot of sandwiches…”

3. 9 mile bike rides with these peeps are tough.

Zach, Dad and IOf course I’m talking… when am I not?

We hopped on to the bike path last night after work to head to my parent’s camp in Mallets Bay and it was a great windy summer evening for it. I wore my vans instead of sneakers because I’m a total rookie and I paid for it. Hello slipping and shin pain.

4. Handwritten notes are the best.

NotesHow cute are these? They were a dollar at Michael’s a few months ago and I love them.  Who doesn’t love getting a handwritten note? I’ve been trying to get better about sending thank you notes and it certainly helps when I’ve got these adorable suckers sitting on my desk.

5. I’m happy it is still summer but I can’t wait for fall boots!

This is the best ever!

Durham Boot $39.95

This is the best ever!

Barnes Boot $69.95
 

I’m sort of in love with JustFab! So far the two pairs of shoes I’ve purchased from there have received so many compliments and are holding up great for as inexpensive as they are. While I’m sad to see summer coming to a close I’m oddly excited about fall fashion. Time to start shopping now 🙂

Got a good fun fact?
Are you good about writing thank you notes?
 
What’s your favorite season to dress for?

Namaste & All That Good Stuff

Hello there, friends!

I know how important it is for you to find out that our softball team is going to the Championship game after a hard fought battle against the Hilton last night so I will lead with that.

Wombats

Anyway on to the real subject of the post…

This past weekend almost 400 yogis took over Burlington’s Church Street for a free event open to any and everyone who had a mat and the desire to practice.

Yoga on Church StreetHow freaking cool does this look??? Photo credit from Sangha Studio’s Facebook page.

While I was unable to attend this event hearing about it got me thinking.  Freshman year of college I decided to take my first yoga class and it taught me what I had always suspected… I am the least flexible human on the planet.  Upon returning weekly it also taught me many other actually helpful things that I use in my everyday life.

Yoga has taught me various breathing techniques which I use not only when running but also to calm myself when I am feeling stressed.

Yoga has taught me tricks for falling asleep faster and more importantly, getting back to sleep once I have woken up. This has been a real problem for me lately, I keep waking up 2 hours before the alarm goes off. When I am having trouble I try to combine breathing patterns with focusing on each body part individually as I slowly (most of the time) drift off.

Yoga has taught me how to stretch out certain problem areas to the point of even reducing some of the problems. Lower back pain be gone!!

Yoga has taught me that pushing outside of my comfort zone (i.e. signing up for the class in the first place) can create some of the best consequences… like my pants fitting better. WIN!

So why don’t I go anymore?

I struggle to do yoga on my own, like many exercises I am much more likely to push myself when I am in a class setting.  I genuinely enjoy the feeling of being in a studio with others practicing together. I also probably make people feel better about their flexibility based on my complete lack there of… I’m a humanitarian what can I say?

That being said, yoga classes tend to be on the expensive side.  Rationalizing the $10-15 a class on my budget has pushed attending classes to the wayside.  I have been thinking about incorporating a class or two into my schedule/budget for awhile now because I know how much I have benefited from consistent practice in the past.

So this week I have skipped the 3-4 trips I normally make to the coffee stop in the office building for iced tea #addictionproblems and tomorrow afternoon I will replace it with my first official yoga class in I don’t even know how long!

Wish me luck 😉

Do you practice yoga?

Do you prefer fitness classes or can you rock it by yourself?

Studio 208: My First Barre Class

I want to start this post by sharing this photo from a couple nights ago fishing with Zach at Shelburne Pond.

Shelburne PondIt was absolutely incredible 🙂

Moving on though to the meat of the post, yesterday I completed my first ever Barre class!  I had been trying to get over to Studio 208 for a few weeks now but just could never make it work but I finally made it last night after work!  The class is was called “Run to Barre” and included a 30 minute run down to Oakledge park and then an hour long barre class upon returning.  As I’ve mentioned before I haven’t been running as much since the Half Marathon last month but I am definitely trying to get the wheels going again. When I saw this class I thought it would be a great opportunity to do something I love and add in something I’m freaking terrified of.

Studio 208Mostly kidding on being terrified but I am basically the least flexible human on the planet so a Barre class has always intimidated me.  From the minute I walked in the door I felt completely welcome and the instructor Erin was a total sweetheart, she knew what to say to make me feel comfortable. The other girls were definitely veterans but even they made me feel at ease which for those of you who have taken group fitness classes- that isn’t always the case.

The run went well but my stomach had been bothering me all day and that mixed with the heat gave me some full on huffing and puffing moments.  There were only 6 of us and it was sort of like just running with a club just for fun.  I almost forgot we were going to do a whole class after but I think it’s an awesome idea because not only did it feel good to complete but also made my muscles nice and loose!

As for the actual barre class… It went as I expected it would.  I blacked out somewhere in the hand weights section of the workout #noodlearms.  My toes are naturally pretty crampy and I had some moments of mostly over-dramatic panic convincing myself that they would stay cramped forever (they did not).  I wobbled at some points, felt really strong in others. I bent when I should have lengthened, I pointed when I should have flexed but all in all I felt oddly normal. I had done a bunch of pilates classes before so I didn’t feel totally out of my element with a lot of the mat stuff but I can tell you that getting my leg up on that bar was a doozy!  My favorite part was probably shimmying… hip shaking is my specialty (ha!) it was so fun! I loved the work on the mats and the way the class flowed, plus I almost died when a Bastille song started to play… I FREAKING LOVE BASTILLE!

I unintentionally (but sort of intentionally) creeped on the girl next to me during class cause unlike me, she knew exactly what she was doing and did it well.  I jokingly apologized after class and she laughed it off saying I did great for my first time… why, thank you random stranger girl.  I ended up getting this first class free so I’m still sitting on my 6 class pass that I bought half off a few weeks ago, which is ballin’ news because I will absolutely work this into my weekly routine. The atmosphere was warm and relaxing, the big open windows and brick walls were gorgeous and the location is literally 5 minutes from the office. I already feel great just after one class 🙂

After class I was absolutely starving but also still having the stomach bug from earlier so I went with a small meal that I tend to put together for lunch when I’m really busy…

DinnerPaper plates, deli ham, Stewart’s bakery roll and my favorite goat cheese on the planet… I’m so classy.

Goat CheeseNobody does goat cheese like Blue Ledge Farm– this one in particular is covered in herbs and goes with everything!

My older sister Katie lives in Nashville but is staying with us from a couple days and brought her puppy Maggie Lou… I have since learned that Maggie Lou is a psycho. Adorable and incredibly happy, but she is nuts. I am not used to someone staring so intently at me while I eat dinner so her style of “close-talking” was a learning experience to say the least.

Maggie Lou

I also now know that she loves socks… especially sweaty post-barre class socks… RIP socks. Thanks for the memories!

canvas

Oh well, now that I’m a “barre-go-er” I have decided I need these sweet new socks…

Be Amazing“Be Amazing” socks from Sticky be Socks

They have all sorts of colors and fun sayings on them, plus the quote on the website is by Joe Namath… J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! Do I need them? Probably not but I know myself, I will get them.

Have you ever done a Barre class?

Have you tried any new fitness classes lately?

Cyclepath Spinning Studio

Hey there!

To begin I just want to let you all know that our hotel softball team had an impressive victory last night, I know that you were concerned so I just wanted to get that out of the way.

  Zach and I Softball    Pitcher and Shortstop reporting for duty.

To celebrate a few of us headed out to the beach to have a little bonfire and some hot dogs before the storm came in and forced us out.

Beach BonfireSandy toes on hot summer nights, what could be better?

Moving on!

Spinning isn’t something I have done frequently in life but every time I have gone to a class I always walked away so glad I did it.  It gives me that cardio without running which is a really nice change especially coming off a half marathon.  I’ve gone a few times to this great new-ish spinning studio called Cyclepath right in downtown Burlington.  I’ll admit I’ve been incredibly sporadic about going but I’ve been looking into making it more of a routine and finally found the perfect opportunity. I received an email a few days ago that they would be dropping the price on their normal monthly unlimited memberships from $120 to $60 in the summer months. To pay per class is $15 which is pretty typical for fitness classes around these parts. So I jumped on the deal immediately!

I realize that it is summer and an amazing time to take advantage of exercising outside but if you are anything like me “scheduling” a time in my busy day to then push myself can be somewhat difficult.  Plus there are days like today where the clouds opened up and God says “I hate you, Alfalfa!”

I saw an opportunity to use a Little Rascals quote and took it, sue me.

Anyway,the instructors (I’ve met 2 so far) pretty much treat you like they know you.  They seem genuinely excited that you are not only getting your spin on with them but also don’t seem to mind having a quick chat before or after class.  In the past I’ve been weirdly quiet in fitness classes. I have this odd anxiety about talking to the instructors but for some reason I never mind chatting them up for a minute or asking questions. For me, Cyclepath is basically the spin studio equivalent of Cheer’s and everyone does in fact know your name! (Minus the beer but they do have Kombucha on tap)

CyclepathSorry the picture is so grainy, gotta love that orange and white sign though!!!

Today’s lunchtime class was called InSANEterval taught by the lovely and perfectly intense Sara. The class was fast paced and flew by! She pushed hard but never overwhelmingly and always gave options in case anyone was feeling tired.  I like when I feel like the instructor is talking to me but also sort of let’s me do my own thing and she did that very well.  Also, any time work out classes are dimly lit I’m all about it. It reminds me of being at a club and sweating my butt off dancing awkwardly to the music, except not at all.

Speaking of club-like atmosphere, they let you request songs to be played during classes through their website which is a flippin’ brilliant idea! I mean personally I would lose my s*&! if “Sunglasses at Night” by Corey Hart played.  Hello Favorite Song Ever!

My only complaint was that I forgot my “real-people” workout gear and instead looked like I had just rolled out of bed in a baggy t-shirt.  I’m pretty sure there was a hole in the knee of my tights… epic fail.

Cyclepath is also Juice Box, a juice and smoothie bar that I decided would be the perfect post-class treat.  Last week after class I tried their pear, apple and kale juice and it was great- plus the girl who made it was literally one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met!  This time I went a little heavier and got the “Energizer Honey” because it had peanut butter in it and it was wicked delicious.

Energizer Honey#cubelife

I can’t wait to take advantage of their classes with this discounted membership. If you live in the Burlington area or plan on visiting soon you absolutely must make a stop at Cyclepath/Juice Box! They’ll kick your butt and then tell you you’re pretty afterwards;)

Have a happy rest of your hump day!