post pregnancy body update – 16 weeks out

May 1st 2015 12:14:52 pm

kenandme

In some ways there is a lot to report, but in others, I feel like a body update might be premature…

The good news is that breast feeding has gotten SO MUCH BETTER! We had Kenneth’s tongue and lip tie treated two weeks ago. That, in combination with a prescription medication to treat thrush, has resolved the breast feeding pain. Thank goodness. Amazingly, I am already starting to forget how much pain I was in. (“It wasn’t so bad.” ha!) Sticking with breast feeding for a year feels much more doable now. Plus, not having to deal with pain constantly has really made me more relaxed and more able to focus on other things, like falling even more in love with my sweet baby… and also my physical therapy and exercise.

Physical therapy is going quite well. My hips are getting stronger and I feel more comfortable while walking and doing daily activity. I am still going to a PT appointment in the city at Renew once a week where the therapist does some external and internal massage, assesses my progress and strength, and adjusts my daily exercise routine. I have been pretty diligent about sticking to my daily exercises. My only complaint is that my hip pain seems to have migrated into my lower back. But… it is probably mostly from using the baby carrier too much. Last Thursday I carried Ken around Manhattan in it for seven hours! That was a mistake. I know I push myself too hard, but that is basically the story of my life.

I am still not running. My doctor told me that I do NOT need to avoid high impact activity or running, but my physical therapist has recommended that I continue to hold off until I get a little stronger. My hope is to start the process of trying to run at the end of May. I have started to get my hopes up about training for the NYC Marathon this fall… but I still don’t know if it would be smart. We’ll see…

park

My exercise routine these days mostly consists of my PT exercises (core, pelvic floor, and hips) and lots of walking. (Walking to the park often, as seen above, now that the weather is so much better.) I have also added in a few strength training video workouts (with lots of squats!) and on Tuesday I went to a SoulCycle class, which was great. I am hoping to continue taking a cycling class once or twice a week. I also want to get back to Baby & Me Yoga with Ken!

As for food, I have given up calorie counting. When I was dealing with so much pain, tracking every baby feeding, all my PT exercises, and all of the food I was eating got to be way too much to handle. In an uncharacteristically logical move of self acceptance, I decided that calorie counting was one thing I needed to drop. I am still trying to eat more healthy, whole foods and less sugary treats.

Because I am a crazy person who expects immediate, impressive results, I am not thrilled with my weight loss progress. I gained 30 lbs during pregnancy. So far, I’ve lost about 21 lbs. Over the last six weeks since my last update, I’ve lost about 5 lbs. I know that any loss is definitely better than nothing, but I am impatient and daunted by the fact that I still have so much to lose. I know that comparison is completely unproductive and immature, but it is still hard to ignore all the success stories online of women dropping their baby weight in record time. Ugh. I’d love to lose 15+ more lbs, but I will try my best to be patient about it. I may start up calorie counting again at some point, but for now I am trying to be more relaxed and see where it takes me.

These mirror pics are embarrassing and difficult to post (maybe I shouldn’t have shared them! gah! my mirror is filthy!) but hopefully they will be a way (other than weight) to track my progress. I also took my hip, waist, and bust measurements, but I am not brave enough to share them. My goal is to lose 2-3 inches in each area.

16weekspostpartum2

These body posts feel quite self-centered and a little obsessive. But it also feels good to attempt to stay on course and be proactive about getting fit and healthy. It is helpful to write out my thoughts and track my progress. Body image issues have been one of my biggest, life-long, mental challenges and one of the things that scared me most about pregnancy… which I know may be quite vain and ridiculous, but it is the truth. I feel like I am making progress in accepting myself and valuing my body for its health and what it can accomplish… but I still struggle. (I want to do MORE! Get MORE accomplished! Lose MORE weight!) My hope is to stay motivated to continue to shape the body I want, while staying relaxed and patient with my progress. I’ll keep you updated!

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Catch up on my progress with my first post pregnancy body post and my 10 week body update.

1 Comment » Categories: Exercise, Health, Pregnancy

post pregnancy body update – 10 weeks out

Mar 19th 2015 06:21:10 pm

runfeet

So… this is a little hard to talk about, but I have been so honest on this blog up until this point. I don’t want to stop now and give the impression that everything is just going smoothly and easily…

You already know that I am working to lose weight and get fit after baby, and just last week I posted that things were going well… I got the Ok from my doctor to start exercising at six weeks postpartum and I was very excited to get started. I specifically asked my doctor about running and training for a half marathon in May. She said to go for it. I was thrilled to get back to working out! I did strength videos, walked, and tried to run three times. I felt like I was easing myself back into activity gently… but I guess I was wrong. Since starting back to exercise, I’ve experienced some major hip and pelvic weakness. It is preventing me from being as active as I want, but most of all it has scared me into taking a few steps back in this entire fitness process.

Gosh, I thought I was so enlightened and informed going into my pregnancy. I was aware of pelvic floor concerns and thought I was being proactive about strengthening my core and hips. I went to yoga. I did my kegels. I did squats. I sat on my exercise ball. I went to a pelvic floor workshop, for goodness sake! I guess I just assumed I was fit and that my body would stay strong for me, but thinking you are strong is not the same as being strong in the right ways.

I am not a talented runner or athlete, but I always assumed that willpower was my biggest weakness. If I could just force myself to do more, to run longer, to push through discomfort, I would get better. Get skinnier. Running distance races was so fun, but I now think I ran too many prior to pregnancy. And I was so determined to stay active during pregnancy that I didn’t listen to my body. I think I ran too much and too late into my pregnancy. I pushed through discomfort — a smashed bladder, sore pelvic floor, modified gait. I wanted so much to be the modern, fit, pregnant lady! And when I tried running over the last few weeks, my gait was entirely wrong and I was in pain. I shouldn’t have pushed it.

The lesson I’ve learned through this experience is an easy thing to say, but a bit harder to really follow: You MUST listen to your body.

I always assumed I had a low tolerance for pain, and that I was a slow runner because I didn’t push myself hard enough. But after getting through labor and a vaginal childbirth drug free, I am revising my opinion of myself. I am strong and my body can do amazing things. Perhaps I actually have too high of a tolerance for discomfort…

Now, I am probably beating myself up too much over how much I’ve run recently and throughout my life. Distance running is hard on everyone’s pelvic floor, but it may or may not have contributed to the weakness I am experiencing now. (If you are a runner, I don’t mean to scare you. You may be able to handle running before, during, and after pregnancy without trouble.) Most likely, my current weakness is due in larger part to my birth experience. Ken was born in a compound presentation position with his hand up by his head. And I pushed for two hours and fifteen minutes. Those two factors put a lot of strain on my pelvic structures.

So… not much I can do about that now… where do I go from here?

  • I am taking a break from all high impact exercise (running, aerobics, etc) for at least another month.
  • I went to visit Renew Physical Therapy yesterday. My PT has put me on a daily program to help strengthen my entire hip, pelvis, and core region. I plan to be diligent with my PT exercises and go in for a visit once a week. It isn’t cheap, though! And it is only partially covered by insurance.
  • I’ve started this 12-week, online Mutu System. It is a postpartum exercise program that focuses on core strength.
  • I am walking outside every day.
  • I hope to fit in some swimming, cycling, and yoga as often as possible.
  • I am eating healthy, whole foods and keeping my daily calorie count under 2000.

Sadly, I can’t say that I have noticed much positive change in the last few weeks… I know it is still early, but I’ve only lost about 2 pounds since my initial post and I am not feeling much better about myself. Boo. It is hard not to mourn the loss of your old body. It sucks that it is going to take so much work (and money) to try to feel strong and confident again. But I am committed to doing the work. Because this is the scary part: If I can’t sufficiently strengthen my core and pelvic floor, I may never be able to run again. The prognosis will probably not be that dire. But I MUST get stronger before I attempt any long distance training and/or IF I want to tackle a second pregnancy and birth.

If I was only dealing with the vanity aspects of my postpartum body — extra weight, stretch marks, sagging, etc — that would be hard enough. But those things pale in comparison to a body that is not working correctly. It is scary to have health issues. And it feels unfair to have worked so hard to stay as healthy as possible, only to be punished for having a baby with a body that can’t do the things you want to do. But, life is unfair. Plus, I was also rewarded with a perfect, healthy baby boy. I’d take on any health challenge to ensure his continued health and happiness. So, I’ll do the work and hope for the best. And I’ll report back on my progress!

kenfeet

If you want to learn more about strengthening your core before, during, and after pregnancy, this website has a lot of good info: Maternal Goddess

1 Comment » Categories: Exercise, Health, Pregnancy

my post pregnancy body

Mar 6th 2015 11:17:27 am

postpregnancybody2

So… I had a baby. It has been eight weeks since Kenneth’s birth and I have started to try to “get my body back” in earnest now. I thought I should write an initial “before” post so that I (and you) can track my (hopeful) progress.

I feel like I was prepared for a change in my body and was ready to accept the downsides of growing a human inside my abdomen along with the awesome miracle of it. In my rational, positive brain I know that even though my body is not where I would like it to be, it isn’t so bad, and with hard work and patience I can definitely lose weight and get to a place where I feel good about myself again. BUT, in my tired, illogical, overwhelmed brain I am freaking out. I hate the way I look! My clothes don’t fit! Everything jiggles! Stretch marks! How will I ever lose all this weight?! Sometimes I feel utterly destroyed and really sad that I will never have my old self back.

The weight facts: I gained 30 lbs during my pregnancy. I was proud to have stayed within the 25-35 lb weight gain recommendation and I believe I ate extremely healthy. (Despite craving donuts constantly, I really only had like 4 of them all pregnancy. I swear!) Not a terrible weight gain, but after all of the fertility issues over the previous year and our trip to Europe, I started the pregnancy at a higher weight than I would have liked. I lost 14 lbs after the delivery and within the first week. I have NOT lost anything else since then! And at six weeks postpartum, despite exclusive breast feeding and constant hunger, I was on the precipice of starting to GAIN weight. Breast feeding has not meant easy weight loss for me.

I need to lose about 16 lbs to get to my pre-pregnancy weight. And I’d like to lose another 10-15 lbs to get to my dream weight. This seems daunting.

The exercise facts: I exercised throughout my pregnancy. I ran up until about 28 weeks. I went to pre-natal yoga 1-2 times a week, I did pilates, swimming, and I walked a lot. The last few weeks of pregnancy were tough, but I made sure to walk Crusher at least once a day. I think I did a good job staying active. Post-pregnancy is a different story. Leaving the hospital they tell you not to start exercising until you get your doctor’s ok at six weeks postpartum. I followed the rules because I didn’t want to hinder my body’s healing process or cause any additional problems for my pelvic floor. I was also worn out and focused on caring for my baby 24/7. So… I spent about six weeks sitting on the couch. In addition to just having a baby, I am downright out of shape. But, now I’ve gotten my doctor’s permission to start being active again! woohoo!

postpregnancybody1

The plan:

  • Workout Videos – Currently I am trying out this Moms Into Fitness 30-Day Postnatal Slimdown Challenge. It is free on YouTube and seems really smart about easing back into abdominal work.
  • Running & Walking – I know that I need to be patient and that recovery from pregnancy and birth is ongoing… but when it comes to running, I am so frustrated and disappointed. My hips are really messed up. They are weak, and loose, and wonky. After running a mile, I can barely walk. So… I am going to try my best to ease in slowly. In the meantime, I am trying to walk Crusher every day with Ken in the baby carrier.
  • Postnatal Baby & Me Yoga – I am trying to attend this class with Kenneth at Bend & Bloom once a week. It isn’t a strenuous workout, but it feels good to move and see other new moms. Plus, it is good to expose Ken to new things and baby friends!
  • Calorie Counting – Most lactation resources recommend avoiding extreme dieting while breastfeeding. They tell you to “eat to hunger and appetite,” which is what I have basically been doing since Ken was born, but if I truly ate to my appetite?? I’d be eating a dozen donuts a day washed down with eight cups of coffee and a chocolate bar. So… I need to watch what I eat. I am aiming for less than 2000 calories a day, with extra calorie allowances added depending on my activity level each day. Nothing drastic. I’m using the Lose It app to record my food and exercise. Travis and I have a goal of eating four dinner salads a week… so far, success!

Looks are not important. Especially at this point in my life, no matter what I do, a super-model body is not in my future. If you think about all of the people in your life that you care about, what impact do their looks have on your love? Probably zero. So, I know that being a mom is my top, best priority and Ken will love me no matter my jean size or how many miles I can run… BUT I’d love to wear my old clothes again. And, I want to stay healthy and feel fit. So, I am going to work hard to get back in shape and stay within a healthy weight range. I’ll keep you posted on my progress!

This cute face will help keep me motivated…

kennethcutie

Have you had success losing the “baby weight” recently? What are your tips?

1 Comment » Categories: Exercise, Health, Pregnancy

Travis conquered the NYC Marathon 2013

Nov 7th 2013 09:04:59 pm

travisnyc

Travis did it! He ran the NYC Marathon and got his goal time of under four hours – 3:55:12, to be exact.

We were both supposed to run NYC last year. We trained with Brooklyn Team in Training, raised money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and even went to the event expo with our friends… only to find out that the race had been cancelled. We were bummed, but quickly focused on helping with hurricane clean up. Plus, we got to run the Philadelphia Marathon two weeks later, so it was still a successful season… but the NYC Marathon is special and Travis wanted his chance to run through the city. He transferred his registration to 2013.

nyccheer

Since I already ran NYC in 2010, I decided to take the refund. That way, I could focus on cheering for Travis just like he did for me in 2010. I tried to make it to three spots on the route – mile 7 in Brooklyn near our place, mile 18 on 1st Ave in Manhattan, and mile 23 on 5th Ave in Manhattan. It was awesome seeing Travis in Brooklyn, even though it was incredibly crowded! I made it to the next two locations, but somehow I missed Travis at mile 18. Bummer. I was determined to see him at 23 — I kept my eyes on the runners obsessively — and I did! He was tired, but powering through.

I got to cheer with many friends – Becca, Sarah, Lawrence, Amanda, Joel, Matt – and I got to see many members of the current Brooklyn Team running, but not all of them. I couldn’t stay out on the course all day like we did in 2011. I hustled to the finish shortly after I saw Travis for the final time. I had all of his warm clothes and didn’t want to be late!

travisnycmedal

The security at the marathon was incredible! They had blocked off almost all of Central Park West and all of Columbus Circle. Giant dump trucks blocked the streets. There were police officers and canine units everywhere! The security seemed excessive (and cost $1 mil!) but it paid off, because the race went off without a hitch. Which is amazing. Especially considering that the 2013 NYC Marathon was the largest marathon in history, with 50,304 finishers. Wow!

It was a trek to get myself to a meeting place near the finish, but I made it! Travis arrived in his marathon poncho and medal. He was cold, but happy.

Travis ran a strong race and I am very proud of him. He trained extremely hard for this race. He is much more dedicated and disciplined than I. There are many more fast races in his future!

Check out all of my photos from the event in my Flickr set.

5 Comments » Categories: Exercise, New York, running, Travis

so many running updates

Oct 31st 2013 04:02:43 pm

Happy Halloween!! But this isn’t a Halloween post… it is about running. Of course. It is always about running.

solorun

I completed so many races in the beginning of 2013 that I really burned myself out… spring and summer were not great running seasons for me, but I’ve gradually been working myself back into the groove. Recently, I’ve been surprised to realize that I am actually feeling pretty good. And, I have been doing some fairly successful marathon training on my own. I completed two solid long runs this month, including a solo 20 miler that went exceptionally well… and not just because I made pit stops for a donut AND a cupcake.

I am feeling unexpectedly excellent. Running is on my good side for now. Which is handy, because there is a lot of fun, running-related stuff happening…

sarahlawrence

Early this month, one of my best and sweetest running friends (and Warrior van-mate), Sarah, got married to her equally sweet (he got me a signed photo of Patrick Stewart!) boyfriend-now-husband, Lawrence. It was a beautiful, fun, huge, family wedding and it was such a thrill to be invited. The food was amazing and the entire event was full of cute, personal touches. Sarah and Lawrence made race bibs for their table seating cards! So clever and fun! Such a great night. Travis and I made good use of the party photo booth with our fellow running Warriors.

dadhalfmarathon

My dad ran his first official half marathon on October 19th. Very cool! With the covert help of my brothers, I flew home to surprise him on the course. Aaron, Seth, Mom, and I had signs and we were yelling our head’s off, but somehow we missed Dad at the start of the race. Good thing we saw him at Mile 3 near the Liberty Memorial. He stopped and gave me a hug. I think he was genuinely surprised to see me. Success! I met him again at Mile 11 and ran the last 2 miles with him and his kind friend, Todd. Dad was tired at the end, but he ran a very strong race. Now he has his sights set on a full marathon!

See all my photos from my Kansas City trip HERE.

bktntesswinter13

Above is my current Brooklyn Team in Training. We are all participating in the “Endless Summer” (winter) season and training for either the Bermuda or New Orleans Half Marathon. I’m Social Captain again this season, and although our group is small, it is awesome. Last night we had a “Socktober” costume contest and a 5k test. I ran (maybe) my fastest 5k ever (sub 9min/miles, but still didn’t break 28 minutes – boo) and felt great. Travis was sweet and paced me the whole way. I run my best races when he helps me.

brooklynmarathonblog

With the successful 20 mile run and the strong 5k under my belt, I feel confident enough to publicly admit that I am running the Brooklyn Marathon on November 17th. The race is entirely in Prospect Park and it will be challenging… but I think I am going to take it seriously. I have no idea whether I can PR, but you never know what will happen… perhaps it will be MY race.

travisnyc

In even BIGGER news… Travis is running the NYC Marathon on Sunday! Wow. It his first NYC, but his 6th marathon. He has been training extremely hard and I think he is going to have an amazing race. I plan to cheer for him at three points on the route. He is Bib #22006 (starting in Blue Wave #2, Corral #22). You can track him by downloading the free iPhone app.

NYC Marathon Day is one of my very favorite days in the city. I was devastated by Hurricane Sandy last year and the cancellation of the race. What a sad time… But this year is going to be great! I am volunteering at the Team in Training booth at the Expo all afternoon tomorrow – come see me! – and I am an official #INGNYCMarathon Social Reporter. You can follow me as @rljart and @SCBkRunners on Twitter and as @rljart on Instagram. Be prepared for a LOT of marathon updates! (You can also search for the #ingnycm hashtag to get the newest marathon-related tweets.)

Will you be watching the NYC Marathon? What other fall events are you excited for?

1 Comment » Categories: Exercise, Family, Friends, running, Travis, weddings

summer run streak success

Sep 4th 2013 03:28:08 pm

Success!! I completed the Summer Run Streak. I ran from May 25th, two days before Memorial Day, through Labor Day, September 2nd. That is 101 straight days of running! Whew.

I am really happy that I decided to do the streak. Originally, I committed to the Runner’s World Run Streak which was supposed to last only through the 4th of July. But I got ambitious and decided to keep going. The only rule was that I had to run at least a mile each day.

Other summer 2013 numbers:

  • I ran 310 miles during the streak.
  • My longest run was 16 miles.
  • I ran in 4 states: New York, Kansas, Missouri, Oregon
  • I ran 5 organized races.
  • I used 4 different pairs of running shoes.
  • I swam 10 miles (at the Red Hook public pool).

I am so happy that I kept moving this summer even though I’m not training for a specific fall race. It felt good to give myself permission to do shorter workouts. And, I think it actually helped keep me in pretty good shape!

Even though a few of my friends are keeping it going, I decided not to continue the streak through the fall. 101 days feels like a really solid number for a streak. Plus, I don’t want the streak to become a thing that I must continue for the rest of my life… so I took yesterday off! It felt good to finally rest… but I am heading out for a quick run today! I can’t rest for too long…

See all of my Run Streak photos here.

6 Comments » Categories: Exercise, Health, running

running the city

Aug 28th 2013 11:41:12 am

The only event I have on my upcoming race schedule is Reach the Beach in two weeks, so long run training isn’t a necessity, but Saturday I set out on a New York City running adventure anyway. I covered three boroughs (Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens), crossed five bridges (Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg, Queensboro, Pulaski), checked out 5Pointz (a graffiti art site in Queens), and covered 16 miles. I really enjoyed running solo all over the city and documenting it on Instagram (see all the photos here). And the donut ice cream sandwich at the end was more than sufficient motivation to keep me going. The weather was absolutely beautiful. I kept thinking to myself, “I’m back!” I felt strong, like I could run forever. I had fun.

But then I woke up on Sunday and felt icky. Sick and sore and sluggish. It is for more reasons than the long run, but it is still a bummer. I am nearly done with my daily summer run streak — almost 100 days straight!! — but discouragement is still my constant training companion. I’m not sure how to shake it…

In other running news, South Central Brooklyn Runners (our totally casual local running club) has finally placed an order for team singlets! I based the design on a Nike style, but tried to keep it simple so that it would appeal to as many people as possible. Of course, we had to include VOLT! (Volt = neon yellow.) More than 60 people ordered them — we are going to make a scene at our fall races!

And in even more running news… want to run a half marathon in Bermuda or New Orleans in January?? Come join Brooklyn Team in Training! I am the team social captain for our Winter (or Endless Summer if you want to feel fancy) season and I know we are going to have a lot of fun. Team in Training is a supportive way for anyone (beginners to marathoners) to prepare for an endurance event while fundraising for a very good cause. You already know that I highly recommend it. Join us!

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I’ll post more about the Summer Run Streak soon… but tell me, what has been your exercise plan or motivation this summer? I need more inspiration!

3 Comments » Categories: Brooklyn, Exercise, New York, running, Team In Training

camp ironman

Aug 5th 2013 03:42:57 pm

Summer is so much fun. And I’d argue that one of the best ways to enjoy summer is to go camping with friends.

Remember how I volunteered at the NYC Ironman last year and loved it? I definitely wanted to volunteer again, and with no NYC event this year, the Lake Placid Ironman was the nearest alternative. Plus, Lake Placid is located right in the center of the beautiful Adirondack mountains. A wonderful place to camp. Thank goodness Ironman Joel planned ahead and booked us awesome campsites for the event weekend about 40 minutes from Lake Placid at Lincoln Pond. (Campsites 34 & 35 R, for the record.)

Our campsites were considered “rural” in that they were a drive from the main campgrounds with showers and ice and firewood. But we had two outhouses, our own exclusive lake beach, and lots of privacy.

We cooked over the fire, slept in tents (Travis and I are still using our tiny two-person tent that we bought in Oregon), went for runs, swam in the lake, and basically just relaxed for four days.

Travis and I decided sort of at the last minute to bring Crusher along. I am so glad we did! He was less of a hassle than I was expecting and it was so much fun to see him swimming in the lake in his doggy life vest. He hated the vest, but he would voluntarily swim into the lake when he was wearing it. He also liked riding on the inflatable rafts. He was a crack up and he loved being wild and free for the whole weekend.

The Ironman race was on Sunday. Our more hardcore friends woke up early to go see the swim start, but I was worried about trying to keep Crusher in the car all day, so Travis and I got a later start. I was pumped that we ran into the bike course when we went out to find breakfast in the super-cute town of Keene. We stumbled upon the excellent ADK Cafe and got to sit on their porch eating pancakes as the cyclists zoomed by. We got to see nearly all of the racers, from the pros with their crazy alien helmets, to the more average racers (as average as Ironmen can be) at the back of the pack. It was exciting!

Our Ironman volunteer shift didn’t start until 8 pm, so we spent the day exploring the region a bit, searching out free internet, and hiking one of the many mountain trails. In the evening we went into Lake Placid to spectate the run portion of the race. The Ironmen run a full marathon as the final portion of the event, and the Lake Placid marathon is not easy. We joined the crowds at the top of a particularly steep, long hill near the finish (and middle, since they run a 13 mile course twice) and cheered on the runners.

By the time our volunteer shift time came, Crusher was exhausted. He was totally fine hanging out in the car while Travis and I joined our friends at mile 24 of the marathon course. We manned the final aid station during the final hours of the race. We handed out water, CocaCola, chicken stock, pretzels, fruit, Gu, and electrolyte drink. Most of the athletes were very tired, but nice and responsive. The chicken stock and Coke were the most popular items. I had maybe too much fun cheering and calling out our items to the athletes. As it got later, the runners sort of trickled off. It was heartbreaking to know that a few of the last runners would not make it to the finish in time for the 12 am cut off. One woman collapsed near us and had to be taken away by medical staff. It was all very dramatic and inspiring.

I really want to do an Ironman some day. Volunteering at the event entitles you to priority sign up for the next year’s Ironman. Our friends Joel, Jon, Louis, and Yvonne all signed up for the 2014 event. I was tempted, but I don’t think 2014 is my year… I DO plan to be there to cheer and volunteer again!

Monday was the best camping day! We slept in a bit, I had a great trail run early in the day, we hung out for hours in the water, laughed too much, wrestled an inflatable shark, drank from “floozies” (a trademarked floating koozie invention), roasted little smokies and lots of fruit, discussed lumens, and took many panoramic photos of the sunset. It was a good time.

Crusher was totally exhausted by the time we departed on Tuesday. He slept for almost the entire drive back to the city. The weather and the sky were so beautiful while we were driving that I started daydreaming about buying a “summer home” in the Adirondacks… and a car to get us there… and triathlon bikes so that I can train for my Ironman…

If you live in the NYC area, I highly recommend getting out of the city to camp in the Adirondacks. It is easy! We rented a car from the Enterprise Rent-a-Car near our place in Park Slope (it is cheaper than ZipCar for longer trips) and you can reserve your campsite easily through ReserveAmerica.com. Lincoln Pond was a wonderful location, but I am sure that any of the campgrounds in the region would be great. Bring a tent, sleeping bags, pillows, firewood, water, hotdogs, S’more makings, bug spray, and sunscreen… and plan to have a great time!

See more photos from our trip on Flickr.

5 Comments » Categories: Exercise, Friends, running, Travel

currently // July 2013

Jul 23rd 2013 10:48:13 am

making… the best ever chocolate chip cookies. No Crisco and they still turn out fluffy and soft. Don’t over-cook them. They get eaten really fast!

practicing… Swimming! My swim lesson came to an end, but I’ve started going to lap swim at the local public pool. I have a goal to swim 25 miles by the end of summer… that is a lot.

watching… Orange Is the New Black on Netflix. We actually already finished the full series. It is funny and poignant and complicated and weird. All of the actresses are amazing, but I especially love Kate Mulgrew (previously known as Captain Janeway).

listening to… Emeli Sandé.

looking forward to… camping this weekend! And volunteering at the Lake Placid IronMan. My friends and I are manning a water table during the run portion of the event. I’m excited! (I had such a great experience volunteering at the NYC IronMan last year.)

//

Summer is half over and I am already mourning its passing. I’ve been packing this hot season too full of fun and fitness! What have you been enjoying?

3 Comments » Categories: Currently, Exercise, Food, music, Television, Travel

summer run streak

Jul 2nd 2013 11:49:00 am

If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you are already aware that I am participating in the Runner’s World Summer Run Streak 2013. My coach, Lisa, told me about the streak right after I completed the Trail/Road Challenge in the Berkshires. The rules of the streak were to run at least one mile every day from Memorial Day to July 4th. Thirty-nine days of consecutive running.

I have made it successfully to day 37. I’ve run in upstate NY, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Kansas, Oregon, in parks, on streets, bridges, and trails. I’ve done plenty of one-mile runs, but also a few longer excursions. I did nine miles with my dad, a quick jog with my brother Seth & Flike (the dog), the Color Run with my family, a long run to Doughnut Plant with Travis, the Pride Run with my cousin, and a few group training sessions with my Brooklyn team. It’s been a good running summer!

I’ve been recording my run streak by posting a photo each day to Instagram and Twitter. (You can use the hashtag #rwrunstreak to find streak-related posts.) I know that my friends and followers are probably slightly annoyed with all my running tweets and photos… I can see how it could look like bragging. But that is not at all my intention! The social media documentation has been a strong motivator. Knowing that I “need” to make a post each day has gotten me out the door when I didn’t want to. Encouraging comments on my posts make my day. And I love my collection of Run Streak photos!

I’ve really been enjoying this type of lower mileage daily fitness… so, I’m going to keep it going!! My friend Alison and I have challenged ourselves to continue the streak through the end of summer. We are calling the second leg of the summer streak: The Summer Heat Streak, July 4th – Labor Day. It will be 61 more days of consecutive running. And still, the only rule is that we must run at least one mile a day. You can join us! I am going to be tagging my related social media posts with #summerrunstreak.

One last thought… running hard every day and not taking breaks can be dangerous. I do NOT run hard every day. During this streak I’ve taken many “rest days” where I do my one mile run at a very easy pace and let my body recover. I actually feel like this lower mileage streak has been healthier for me than the sporadic, super-high mileage I was attempting earlier this year. Always listen to your own body and do what is best for YOU… no matter what your friends are posting on Twitter and Instagram. xoxo

4 Comments » Categories: Exercise, Health, running, Shoes

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Hello.

I'm Rachel. I run websites and run marathons. I live in Brooklyn and write about art, crafts, design, food, fitness, fashion, my daily life, and New York City.

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