Monday, November 3, 2014

Rock and Roll Denver Complete!

This post is about two weeks late, but I wanted to wait for the official pictures to arrive and I wanted a little time to recover and process.

Two weeks ago, I completed my first half marathon! It was an amazing experience and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat! I did not train as well as I had planned, but I still got out there and finished that race.

I was nervous/excited/scared and a million other emotions the night before and the morning of the race. I didn't know if I could do it and I was terrified that I would get scooped up by the "sag wagon" (as it is called by the rock and roll series) because I was going to slow. Well, good news: I didn't get scooped up for going to slow, I wasn't the last person across the finish line, and I crossed that finish!!!

I felt pretty great for most of the race. I made a few friends to chat with along the way, and that really made the time pass. It was a very pretty course, I got to see lots of Denver and I was feeling good the first 10 miles. Then I hit that "magical" wall. You know the one, where you feel like you want to cry, crawl or just quit.

I was hating the race and questioning why I subjected myself to this for about two miles. Then it hit me that I was only about a mile away from the finish line! I knew I could push it out and make it there. I ran to the finish, crossed that line and had that medal placed around my neck! It felt so awesome!

When all was said and done, I was thrilled that I did it. I was riding that runners high for about a week after the race. We have even decided that we are going to do a few more Rock and Roll races in 2015 and I cannot wait!

If you have thought about doing a Rock and Roll race, I say do it! They are a blast and maybe we will run into each other at one!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

New Favorite Thing

You may have noticed the jackets that we have on in my post from yesterday. They are the New Balance Glow Beacon Jacket and I am in love!

I first saw this jacket on a blog about a year ago, thought they were great, but didn't want to spend $175 on it. I kept going back and doing online searches to see if I could find them cheaper, but my research was unsuccessful (until about a month and a half ago).

Enter Zulily and their wonderful sales. I was able to pick up one for Andy for half price, but no luck for me. I figured I would be a nice wife and get him one as his marathon training present (though I still wanted one for myself). I kept looking and finally found one of myself on a running outlet website, sadly I forget which one.

They were both on sale since they are last years version, but the only difference I can tell is the color. The new ones are yellow, for both men and women. The ones I picked up are green for men and coral for women, which I like better than the yellow anyway, so it works out!

This is probably the best training jacket that I have come across and will/have gotten tons of use out of it. Especially now that we live pretty much out in the country and there are very few street lights, it is great for those early morning/late night runs when the sun is not so bright. The jacket allows you to be visible during the day with the bright color, and at night since they have dots that glow in the dark! It is also nice and stretchy, not stiff like some other training jackets.

I am so glad that I found these bad boys and can't wait to rock it on my dark training runs.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Great Pumpkin Run and Colorado Springs Grand Prix of Running

On Saturday we got to sleep in and still had a race. I love when races don't require me to get up at 5am haha. So, we made our way to Venetucci Farm for the Great Pumpkin Run 10k, and got sweet hats instead of adding to our ever growing race shirt drawer. 

The first two miles were great, my time was pretty good and I was feeling good. Then we merged with the 5k runners, where the one course marshall told 10k runners to stay to the left, so I did. 

We got to a fork in the road, where the farm house is, and I kept to the left. Well, I ended up going the wrong way, which was the into oncoming 10k traffic, in the middle of the woods. I ended up going this way as the person in front of me did, so I assumed, follow the group. This was very wrong, and I was going against people for about 2 and a half miles. 

It really annoyed me that there was no one at the fork in the road. If you tell me to stay left, I am going to stay left. Andy said when he went past that fork, there was a person directing people. I guess that person got tired and left their post, which caused a few of us to go the wrong way for 2 and a half miles.

I just decided to follow the path in reverse to still get the miles. I finished the race, as I had to, it was the last of the Grand Prix of Running series that we were doing, but I won't do this race again. I did not like the fact that there was very little aide on the course along with very poor course markings (I am not the only person who thinks this, I spoke to a few other people and they had issues as well). 

Like I said, this was the last race in the Grand Prix of Running series. It is a 6 race series where you can pick short (mostly 5ks) or long (mostly 5 milers and 10ks). I ended up doing the long series since I wanted to push myself, and I am glad I did. I liked half of the races, and was not a fan of the other half, so I don't know if I will do the series again next year. But like I said, I am glad I did it and will get my award for completing the series at the dinner in December. 

Have you ever done a race series like this? Were you a fan?

Have you had any races that are just not run well?

Monday, September 22, 2014

The Start of a Bedroom Redo

This past weekend Andy had mentioned that he might want to look for a new comforter. Ours is about a year and a half old and has seen better days (guess that is what happens when we let our pups on the bed all the time). This is our old set:

We decided to go with a duvet, instead of a new comforter set, that way it is much easier to just take it off and toss it in the wash when muddy puppy feet get on it. And then we were off to Target!

I had a cartwheel coupon for 10% off Threshold bedding. If you don't have the cartwheel app, you need to get it right now, best thing ever. Anyway, we made our way to Target but didn't really find anything that we loved, and there is no point in buying something that we didn't like just because we had a coupon.

We then made our way to Bed Bath and Beyond (good thing they are in the same shopping center!). I knew that even though they were more expensive that Target, they would have tons of options, so we decided to check it out. We found a Trina Turk set that I had seen online/other blogs/instagram/etc and I really loved, and lucky us, it was on clearance! We got the duvet, two standard shams and two euro shams for 50% off the original price!

I love the way it looks, but now I want to redo our whole master bedroom! First off is new sheets. We currently have cream sheets, and it just doesn't go with the white in the new set. I am thinking white, or navy, or maybe white with some navy trim.

We have these really pretty lamps (in the picture at the top) that we bought from Cracker Barrel, of all places, last year. They matched out previous bed set perfectly, and I do not want to swap them out just because we changed the bedding.

I am wanting to do some navy and white throw pillows for the bed to tie in the blue from the lamps. I am going to pick up some fabric and make these awesome DIY pillows. I am also thinking about getting some navy curtains, but we will see. Everything goes with navy so even when we change out bedding our room will still have those navy accents to pull everything together.

I really love decorating/re-decorating and I also love finding ways to update a room without spending a ton of money. Now, I am off to put a million things in my virtual shopping carts from different sites and decided what we want!

Do you love to change up rooms in your house every once and a while?

What are your best money saving tips on decorating?

On an unrelated note, I ordered this clutch last week and I love it so I wanted to share! It is by Aldo and I got it from It is the perfect size and makes me miss NYC like crazy!

Friday, September 19, 2014

One Month Away!

It is official.... I have exactly one month until my half marathon! Ahh!

I am nervous and excited and all of those feelings that you get whenever something big is coming up. I am nervous because I am afraid that I will have a crummy time, but I am excited because I am going to do it! I will complete the race and cross the finish line of my first half marathon!

The Rock and Roll race series is one of the best known half marathons/marathons out there. I have not completed any of their other races, but from the amount of info and emails that I get from them, they seem super organized and on top of things. They even sent out a preview of the course a while back, check it out:

They also have the full marathon route posted as well, if you are running that one.

We have been up to Denver a few times since we moved to Colorado in February and I really love the city, so I am excited to run through it and see some parts of town that I haven't been to yet. It also doesn't look like a terribly hard course, which makes me happy since its my first half. So, off for some more training so this race doesn't kick my butt!

Have you done any of the Rock and Roll series races? What did you think?

What are your recommendations of a must-do race?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Great Debate: Lululemon vs. Athleta

Last year I did a post about how I didn't see the point in spending money on running/workout clothes. I used to only really wear stuff that I got at Old Navy or Target, which I still wear, but I started the get to point. I realized that you get what you pay for. Those two stores have a nice price point, but the clothes aren't always as flattering and don't have the bells and whistles that more expensive brands have. Also, I have noticed that they don't always hold up as well. 

I first walked into Lululemon the day of our St. Patty's 5k since the shop is downtown and we were waiting for the parade to start. Of course I wanted to peek in and see what all the rave was about. Well, between the awesome gals that work in our Colorado Springs shop, the fact that their dogs were just walking around the store also greeting everyone that came in, and the nice products, I was sold. 

It is rare that I pay full price for anything, so of course I has happy to find out that they were having a sale on all products that were green/have even a little accent of green for St. Patty's Day. They also offer a 15% military discount in our local shop, so it was a good deal. I got a pair of the Run Inspire Crops, their best selling running capris along with a Swiftly Tech Racerback. I love both and since then my little collection has grown to 3 pairs of run inspire crops, 2 swiftly tech racerback tanks, 2 sports bras, 1 short sleeve swiftly top and 1 long sleeve swiftly top (all purchased on sale or were gifts, thanks to my awesome husband and momma). 

I have heard about Athleta and knew they were the main Lululemon competitor. From their quality of clothing, to their similar business model of offering free classes in their shops and allowing you to bring in your furry friends. However, we do not currently have an Athleta shop in the springs (though I hear one might be opening up here next year), so I never got a chance to check them out. Until this past Monday, when I got an email that they were offering free 2-day shipping. 

I thought I would check out what they had to offer, and found a pair of crops (Relay Capri) and a long sleeve top (Fast Track Top) and popped them in my virtual shopping bag. Sure enough, they arrived yesterday afternoon, so I was excited to try them out on my run this morning!

The verdict: split down the middle!

I think I might like the Athleta Relay Capri a little better, though I still love my Run Inspires. They did not ride down at all during my run, I feel that they have a little more compression, and they have nice reflective strips on the hips and back of the calves. Both have a good sized zipper pocket on the waist in the back and vents behind the knees. They are also less expensive, usually $69 (I got mine for $34), compared the Run Inspires that go for $86. 

Regarding the top, I like aspects of the Fast Track Top, but think I am still more of a fan of the Swiftly Long Sleeve. The Fast Track and Swiftly lines are both made from their own version of anti-stink fabric, which means even when you are super sweaty, you don't smell it. The Fast Track has grippers at the hem so it doesn't ride up, along with nice thumb holes. But, the Swiftly is softer, has longer sleeves (for us girls with long arms) and moves better (I felt like my range of motion was a little restricted in the Fast Track top).

Overall, I am a fan of both, now I just have to be on the hunt for a good sale at either, because finding a great sale is half the fun, right?!?!

What is your go to fitness brand? 

Do you care more about the price or what you are getting for that price? 

Monday, September 15, 2014

I'm Back!!!

I have been inactive on the blog for the past four months, but I am back! I was off enjoying life, enjoying living in Colorado, going on vacation (California and NC!) and just didn't find the blog a priority. I was also a little discouraged in the running department and didn't have much to write about.

I had signed up to complete a half marathon in July, and ended up not running it because I did not feel prepared. I was upset with myself for getting lazy and not training like I should, so that just made it worse. I know things don't always work out the way you plan them, but this was my own fault, so I was bummed. But I got over it, completed a few 10ks since I last wrote and now I am more pumped up because I am registered for the Rock and Roll Denver Half Marathon and I will complete it!

I have also been busy with work, trips and life. And the blog takes a back burner because I will not put the internet before real life. We went to California to Disneyland and San Francisco in July and had a blast!

I also flew back to North Carolina a few weeks ago and it was wonderful. It was the first time I had been back since our wedding two years ago and it was just as beautiful as ever. It was also so great to see my family and friends back there.

We have also been loving our new home in Colorado and getting to know the area and all the great things Colorado has to offer. We are very excited and are loving life out here.

That is all for now, but I promise I will write more and be back at being the greatest self I can be!