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Showing posts from 2017

Holy Shit, August.

This month seems nothing short of incredibly. I mean, seriously. It may have been the best month of my life and that is no exaggeration. Let's recap:

August 6
On August 6th my best friend David and I went to see Phillip Phillips and Goo Goo Dolls in concert at Festival Pier. We got there early but a line had formed all the way to Dave and Busters. I thought for sure we'd be stuck in the back of the concert crowd but upon entering the venue I learned that only two full rows had formed (it was GA). I snagged us a spot in row 3/4 a little to the right of the stage. It was perfect. We're going to make it a point to go see them every year. Such a fun concert! 

August 12
I bought tickets months ago but didn't have any friends available for this magical weekend. It was a party bus day trip to Atlantic City. Within the first 20 minutes of the bus ride I had made some friends. I knew the hostess but that was it. Unfortunately after some imbibing I found I was way more interested in…

Land of the Free....Home of the Brave

The Fourth of July is my favorite holiday. It has everything I love: spirited pride red white and blue style, great food, drinks, festivals, music, joy and camaraderie. Nobody does 4th of July better than the birthplace of the 4th of July....Philadelphia. I have a series of July 4th traditions that I absolutely love including watching "Rocky" on the Art Museum steps and hanging out on the Ben Franklin Parkway for the "Party on the Parkway" festival. Now I watch fireworks on rooftops. 

"Rocky" was everything and more. I went with my best friend, David. We got there later than we thought and had to hunt for a good seat. There was a raffle happening, where you could win the chance to watch the movie in the front row of the Art Museum steps in leather recliners from a movie theater. I told David we should enter that contest. So we did. We each got a blue ticket and then shuffled off to our scavenged seats. 

We're sitting there, eating our Wawa hoagies for d…

Delayed Onset of the Quarter Life Crisis

It is Monday afternoon. I've had several people tell me how powerful and moving a recent feature article I wrote for my company's employee newsletter was. I wrote a posthumous piece on a beloved employee based off of the stories others told me of her. They painted the picture of who she really was and I took that picture, put it down in words and e-mailed it out to over 3,000 people. It did the job. 

Moments like that are affirming to me. Nothing is more satisfying than feeling like the thing you loved, the thing you studied, is the thing you're really really good at. You may know you are talented in that arena but it always feels good to be complimented for it. That validation is necessary to keep doing what you love and keep doing it well. 

Except when your whole job isn't about that one piece of the passion. 

Recently I finished the book "You Are Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Live an Awesome Life," by Jen Sincero. It was a self-help book tha…

I don't crack glass ceilings, I shatter glass doors

Hot off the heals of an amazing Memorial Day weekend, I enter the work week with a renewed sense of purpose and determination. I did everything I wanted to do that weekend. I cleaned my apartment, bathed my dog, went hiking with my best friend, hung out with Bronx at a pop-up beer garden, got my hair done, met my new dog walker, gave my neighbor a fond farewell, spent time with special people and went to an epic concert that literally set my soul on fire. 

I've been reading Jen Sincero's book "You are badass, how to stop doubting your greatness and live an awesome life." The book has turned my world upside down. I thought things were going moderately well for me. I have a great job and my roof no longer leaks at my apartment. All that good stuff. However, upon reading this book it became alarmingly clear that I am not living my best life. There is a bucket list of things I want to do and an equally longer list of reasons why I choose not to do them. Excuses. I'm b…

The Only Race I Care About

I wrote a blog post for March complaining about how brutal March was. I had a lot of things due, a lot of things happening, a lot of things that needed to be completed. I never completed that post, though. I guess I didn't feel like wasting precious blog space on complaining. I wrote a post about May but didn't finish that one either. Not sure why, perhaps I got distracted. 

Well, we're going to finish this post. 



Hi friends. It has been awhile. Clearly I have yet to be spit out of this never ending whirlwind called my life. May has been okay so far. The biggest news to report was my 2017 appearance in the Independence Blue Cross Broad Street Run. For the third year in a row, I set out to PR this 10 miler. I wrote the time to beat on my hand: 2:26:53. I did everything right: trained, geared correctly, fueled correctly and ran more than I had in previous years. I usually end up walking miles 5-10 but this year I was still running off and on in miles 7, 8 and 9. Let's star…

The Flu is Not Your Friend

Ok, let's face it. The flu is no one's friend. I got it for the first time in as long as I can remember. Last Sunday (not yesterday but the week before) I went on a nice long hike with Bronx and my bff. We did about 5 miles PLUS I got a one mile trail run in to keep the #RunStreakPhl alive. All was well until Monday morning when I had a few body aches, which turned into A LOT of body aches and a fever and some chills on top. I felt awful. I left around 2:30pm and headed home. I barely got Bronx out and back in before I collapsed in my bed, pulling the covers tightly around me despite it being 65 degrees outside. 

For the next week I battled the icky sickies. I took off Tuesday but had to work from home 12:30-6pm to get something done. I went in for a half day on Wednesday but was miserable. I got things done and met my deadlines but I felt like total crap. It was such a waste. Thursday I took off again and stayed off. Friday I returned for a full work day but I was still coughi…

Successful #Whole30 and February's Challenge

Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. On February 7th, I completed my last day of the #Whole30 Challenge. All in all, I lost 20 pounds since Jan 3rd, 15 of which were during the challenge. I learned how to cook new foods and broke up with sugar (though we reunited recently with the hopes of breaking back up again). I learned how to eat when I'm hungry not just when I'm stressed or bored. I'm really glad I did the challenge even though parts of it were tough. 

For February, I've entered the #RunStreakPhl challenge...run a mile every day in February. I mean, we only have 28 days, right? At first, I was on FIRE. I would look forward to my runs and I was so excited to see my progress run after run. I could run longer, faster and easier with each day. Until a few days ago...when days of running turned into a bad case of shin splints. Now running is extremely painful. I'm trying to stick with the challenge, rolling my shins/calves and stretching more, wearing compression sleeves …

#Whole30 Day 24

I can almost taste the cream in my coffee. I'm on Day 24 of #Whole30. I realized I have been going through the timeline a little more delayed than most people. At this point I should experience "Tiger Blood" which is endless energy and a positive outlook on life. While I do feel a small additional pep in my step, what I am going through now is the really insane dreams that involve me eating non Whole30 foods and feeling guilty. Like...oh hey, I'm almost done anyway...I'm going to eat this ice cream. 

In real life, I have no desire to destroy all of my hard work and partake in non Whole30 foods before my challenge is up. They say these dreams are your brain's way of trying to bring you back to your old eating habits and the food you used to gorge on has a psychological hold on you. Creepy right?

In other news, I've officially lost 15 pounds since this all started AND have entered a new challenge for February. I'm in the #RunStreakPhiladelphia challenge a…

#Whole30 Day 18

I'm over it. Yesterday I sat in a meeting where the most delicious pizza was served. I know this because I usually partake in the delicious pizza. Yesterday, I did not. Instead I took a heaping of tossed salad but there were no more forks left. So I ate the lettuce.......with my hands. 

I miss dairy. I'm over black coffee, black tea and even sparkling water is getting old. I miss cheese. I miss feeling full without feeling bloated. I miss normal bathroom trips. I miss not having to be aware of everything I put in my mouth all the time. Did I mention, I miss pizza? 

It is Day 18 of #Whole30. I'm not quitting but I'm being tested. Last night was particularly stressful as my bedroom ceiling began to fall apart. Pieces of plaster and chips of paint were found scattered on my floor and bed. In a pinch I had to clean the mess up, sleep in my living room and arrange for Bronx to go to daycare today so my landlord can fix the damage. Not what I needed on an already stressful wee…

Ohhh We're Halfway There...Ohhhh, Living on a Prayer!

DAY 15 of #Whole30. Halfway done. Whew! I'm down about 13 pounds. I haven't cheated. I even went out to my kickboxing studio's member's night at a BAR that I LOVE and I did not drink alcohol. Nope. The bartender hooked me up with an on-the-house club soda with lime and a splash of grapefruit juice to make it look like a cocktail. It was delicious and I was grateful.

Sunday night meal prep is now a ritual. I boil 9 eggs, cut up various produce all while cooking my Whole 30 dinner. This weekend was a great weekend for produce because Acme was having their bag a buck produce sale! I was able to get oranges, garlic, potatoes, steam veggies and more for only $1 each. My wallet was pretty pleased and I walked out with a TON of food. 

This morning we welcomed a new coworker with homemade scones and fruit. I didn't even blink at the scones and helped myself to a nice plate of fruit. Boo ya.

Doing this challenge has made me realized the food I DO miss. I miss dairy...like...pu…

#Whole30 Day 10

You are most likely to quit your #Whole30 program on days 10 and 11. The newness of it has worn off, the benefits aren't quite dramatic and you're tired.

Not me. I've lost about 10lbs. I'm learning new things to cook. I am tired though. I cook every night even if it is just a meal for the next day. Lots and lots of cooking. I did manage to eat out twice this week for lunch and remain 100% compliant! #salads

My favorite dish so far was this baked "linguine" dish made from bell peppers, zucchini and shrimp. I've also taken to baking apple slices and sprinkling some cinnamon on them (allowed). I am really tired though and my bowels...well...don't want to TMI but they've been at work. I'll just leave it at that. 

I refuse to quit. I refuse to give up. I refuse to cheat. 20 days to go!

Until next time...

7 Days Down...23 to Go #Whole30

I survived my first week of #Whole30 with only 3 minor cheats (all accidental). The first, I mentioned in a previous post was the Starbucks coconut milk that is not compliant. Didn't know, wasn't that much milk, everything is fine. The second cheat occurred when I went out to eat with my friend David. I got steak and eggs for dinner, a compliant meal with a side of sauteed mushrooms. The mushrooms are typically compliant except when they are sauteed in garlic and butter. Butter is a no no. So to my horror, my delicious mushrooms were drenched in butter. I literally blotted each mushroom on a napkin before eating it. 

The third and final cheat was a oversight cheat. I ordered a Cobb salad for lunch yesterday with my friend. I can eat all the things in the Cobb, granted I should have asked about where the bacon came from/how it was prepared and read the menu better. I said no to dressing which was fine but I failed to notice the delicious salad comes with crumbles of cheese! Not …

#Whole30 Day 4 but really, a Day 3 recap

So far so good. Except for the accidental cheat I had yesterday. Yes, accidental. I read that Starbucks has coconut milk and Whole30 peeps were drinking that with their coffee. As you know, I'm allowed coconut milk. I thought for sure that the Starbucks kind was going to be okay. I was terrified to try the coconut milk so I thought let's ease in by putting it in coffee. Well, it was done. I drank it on my way to work and I got a taste of the tiniest little bit of SUGAR.

So I've only been doing this a few days, but when you eliminate sugar from your diet minus the kind that comes in fruit, you NOTICE when sugar is in things. It wasn't overpowering and it wasn't a lot, but it was there. When I got to work I looked it up and found out that Starbucks' coconut milk is NOT COMPLIANT. Therefore I cheated, accidentally. 

Not going to let that little speed bump derail the challenge. I did not know. Had I known and said "screw it, I'mma order this anyway."...…

#Whole30 Day 2

I made it through my first day of #Whole30! Woo hoo! I did not cheat nor kill anyone. It was an interesting experience, though. 

First of all, I thought I was pretty prepared for this venture. I spent $91 in groceries and was ready to reap the Whole30 benefits. Then I didn't prep the night before my first day and had to resort to a massive salad for lunch. Needless to say, I was pretty hungry after lunch and as late afternoon went on. By the time I got home I had stomach cramps. Whole30 stresses that you eat when you're hungry, no deprivation. Well, I am going to have to pack way more food to feel full. 

By the end of the day, I was cranky. I was definitely craving some quick carbs. I made a surprisingly delicious spaghetti squash, chicken, tomato, onion casserole last night. It came out great and now I know how spaghetti squash works (it is kind of fun to prepare. I was amusing myself as I raked out the flesh and it looks like spaghetti). By the way, who on earth was the first …

Whole30 Begins

Today is Day #1 of 30 for the Whole30 challenge. That's right folks...nothing but non-processed meats, vegetables and fruit for 30 days. No dairy, no grains, no alcohol. But all the eggs, baby carrots and cauliflower my heart desires. 

First let me be honest with you...this challenge is expensive. I dropped a whopping $90 on this week's meal plan ingredients at Acme. ACME! Not Whole Foods...but ACME! The cost of produce is pretty steep. I turned down avocados, cucumbers and peppers simply because I could not justify the price. However the spaghetti squash, coconut milk and La Croix waters put a hefty dent in the bill. I was glad to find peaches were on sale as were cantaloupe. 
This challenge involves a great amount of TIME...perhaps my most precious resource. I made the mistake of not properly planning out meal prep last night and was left in a pinch. I boiled some eggs and made a HUGE salad (which I know will be the most unfulfilling thing ever) for lunch today. Tonight I'…

On Track for the New Year

It is January 6 and I'm on track. I know, a whopping six days...woo. But I feel focused and I'm ready for 2017. As you can see, Bronx Brutus is ready for the snow! We got about two inches last night but at least the roads were clear this morning. 

I start Whole30 on Monday. Bye bye dairy, grains and alcohol for 30 days. I hope I can do it! I've lost 3lbs already since I started writing down what I eat and doing twice a day weigh-ins. I wanted a baseline for weight fluctuations but I'm learning my weight is actually staying the same in the morning and night (which is good). Last night I was shocked to see 3lbs gone already. Could be water weight, but I'll take it. Any subtraction is a positive. 

I made a triumphant return to kickboxing last night. It was a rough start but I eventually found my groove. I'm going to commit to going twice a week for now, building up to three times a week. I'm trying to make sure I'm not leaving Bronx every night. He's fin…

Sympathy for the Devil

In the final days of 2016, I was walking Bronx down the street and some neighborhood Mummers were testing their giant stereo system that was attached to a truck. The song, "Sympathy for the Devil" by the Rolling Stones was blasting at house-shaking volume. It was such a happy song. I've heard it many times before, but on that sunny day while walking my dog, it felt perfect. Now I can't stop listening to it. I'm listening to it right now. 

So it is 2017! Wow! I failed at blogging last year. With a measly what, seven posts? Sorry. If you read the recap, you saw it was a very busy year. I don't have as much downtime as I used to have. Work keeps me insanely busy and I cherish the few precious personal hours I get after work and spend them cooking dinner and hanging out with my dog. This year will be different...maybe. I'll write more. I promise. 

In other resolutions, I think I'm starting Whole30 on January 9. Why not this week? Well, I have some dairy I n…