Friday, May 31, 2013

One of These Things is not Like the Other

My thoughts are usually randomized on Fridays, especially after going out Thursday night, so I'm just going to share a bunch of random things with you that I want to share but do not know how to organize into a cohesive post.

First, the facility that I interned at/currently do programs for was on the Today show on Wednesday. If you didn't see it, here is the link to the story/video. Sarah, one of the therapy dolphins, had a life-saving lung treatment done. It was really amazing. If the video below does not work, click here:

 
Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Second, I have found my new exercise. One of my friends shared this on Facebook. Sorry, running, but I'm replacing you with Prancercise. 


Third, this is how I feel sometimes when I am trying to write a recipe on the blog for you guys. Saddest man in the world. I also watched 4 of these videos in a 15 minute period. 

I like when he drains the pasta onto the floor. Sometimes we all feel like that. 



Also, I don't know what happened to my formatting after the NBC video, so if you made it this far, I thank you. I don't know how to fix it. The last thing I want to share with you is that I am FOR SURE going to Costa Rica in July to teach about sea turtles! The director contacted me about doing evening programs similar to the curriculum of Girls on the Run and she asked me to think of lessons we could teach these girls! For those of you associated with GOTR, what are your favorite lessons? For any of you confident women (and men) who read the blog, what lessons do you think we should teach these girls about female empowerment? I really want to do programs on pushing our limits, confidence, and positive body image. Looking forward to your thoughts!


Happy Friday! What's your most recent favorite YouTube find?

Don't forget to check out my giveaway!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

I Don't Live Here: Sarasota

I know my weekend recap is late, but I had my guest post and giveaway post planned already and decided to wait on my weekend recap! I went to Sarasota for Memorial Day Weekend (or as I was referring to it: Memorial Drunk Weekend), but if you follow me on Twitter, you already knew that. The last two times I have gone to Sarasota, I have left with wounds all over my legs and a lot of silly tweets. This weekend was relatively mild compared to those first two weekends, but they were still out of control.

I got to Sarasota before noon on Saturday, so Kelly, her friend Danielle, and I headed to Publix to get the essentials for the weekend: booze and snacks. Somehow we spent $75 between the three of us, but we didn't get anything substantial. When we got back to Kelly's place, we grilled up the Jalapeño and Garlic Chickpea and Lentil burgers I prepared last week. Thank goodness for grill master Danielle, because she saved the burgers. If you follow this recipe, I would suggest putting tin foil down onto the grill, and re-smashing the burgers together after you flip them (they will fall apart). We melted cheese on top of ours after we flipped them and that helped hold the burgers together. They were AWESOME!


We lounged by the pool a while, where we had some pretty interesting conversations that resulted in quotes like this:



Kelly had to go to work and I was going to meet her at work a little later, so I did what any normal person would do, had a shower beer and took a power nap. When I got to Kelly's work, I ate all the food and drank all the free drinks.

 Pomegranate and Pineapple Martini #fancybitch

 Watermelon Mojito #morefancybitch

Bar popcorn. I don't know what was on it, but it was amazing. I could definitely taste caramel and chili powder, I think. 

Because I was sitting alone, I made some interesting observations, per recorded by Twitter. 



Kelly had brought glow sticks to wear, and I have decided that glow stick headbands are 100% going to be my new trend. I was the only one wearing one and I think I could rock it all day, everyday. 

What do you guys think?

My motto for the weekend became "I don't live here" any time someone would look at me with judgey eyes. I was dancing around and having a great time, but some of Kelly's guy friends were looking at me like I was crazy. I don't live here...I do what I want ;) Danielle, Kelly, and I were so sweaty from dancing, we honestly looked like we had run 6 miles at the end of the night. Disgusting. I fell asleep with my glow stick headband on...you know, in case Kelly lost me in her apartment in the middle of the night while I was sleeping. When I woke up on Sunday, my hair was wild, so I just kept wearing my glow stick headband to the beach. 

On Sunday, Kelly's friend Brandon invited us to a party at the beach. Kel and I knew that it would be busy, so we got there about 10:30 am, after we stopped at Panera to fuel for the beach. We waited 45 minutes for a parking spot, but as soon as we got to the beach, we started drinking. We were hoping to make it until sundown for the drum circle, and we did. If you noticed a lull in my tweets/instagrams/pictures on Facebook, it's because I was too busy drinking and having a good time. I'm not mad about that ;) There was a fight on the beach, though, and the cops came, but other than that, it was great. I fell down in the sand three times...twice because Kelly tackled me. I'm still digging sand out of my ears 4 days later. I'm pretty sure that I have sand in my brain. 


We made it until sundown, when we went to dinner and were just being ridiculous. I was a little tipsy still at this point, and my sister was sending me these GIFs of cats that she had found on Facebook. She had to have sent me 20 in a 10 minute period. Kelly and I couldn't handle it. We then had a fashion show:


Sorry that my hair looks disgusting...I hadn't washed it in 36 hours. Sorry for partying.

We went out after that to Daiquiri Deck, where Kelly and I were crashing from such a long day, but we rallied and had a great time. I was dancing on all of these random people without them knowing and it became my little game. We also got some pretty fun tweets out of that:



I have a pretty tender foot, but I didn't step on anything and there's nothing sticking out of it. I was also very sober at this point, so I know I didn't forget that something happened to me. I also showered for the first time in 36 hours when we got home. Sorry I'm disgusting, but I don't live here.

On Monday, we woke up at 8:30, but slept on and off until 12, when we got up, went to Trader Joe's and got lunch before I left. I ate this little slice of heaven:

Thai Vegetable Wrap with 3-bean Mango Salad

I got home at 7 on Monday evening and was debating going out, but when my friends got in touch with me, I was already in bed and had been since 8:30. I was exhausted and I didn't even care that it was still daylight out.

I know I'm late, but how did you spend your Memorial Day Weekend?

Ps. Don't forget to check out my giveaway

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Armpocket Review and GIVEAWAY!

Recently, my iPhone armband died. It was literally being held together by threads, the velcro wouldn't work, and it just smelled horrible all of the time from being sweaty:


That being said, I did what any blogger would do and I took to the Twitter-sphere to see if I could find any companies that would be willing to work with bloggers. I stumbled upon Armpocket  and found my answer! After harassing them via Twitter, I got a response and e-mailed back and forth with Michael, a sales rep for Armpocket. He offered to send me an Armpocket of my choice in exchange for a review!

I chose the Armpocket i-10 to review in paint-splatter:
 I have an iPhone 4 that has a very thin case, so it fit perfectly in the zipper pouch. Here is the description of the i-10 from the Armpocket catalogue (excuse the poor screenshot):


So far, I really love this armband! The velcro is the strongest velcro I have ever encountered, which is awesome, because all of my previous armbands always came unvelcroed during my runs and started slipping down my arm. The armband is also vented so that your arm can breathe and not chafe during the longer runs. There are little slits at the bottom of the Armpocket where you can plug your headphones into. I didn't realize at first that I had to put my iPhone in upside down in order to make this work the best, but I zipped my phone in and just left a little opening for the headphones to stick out and had no issue, so I think this would work too. The next time I used it, I put my phone upside down. I had a little issue putting the headphones in, but what I did was put the headphone input into the slits in the bottom, then put my phone into there. Everything stayed put and there were no issues after that! The armband felt a little heavy when I first put my phone in, but I didn't feel weighed down at all while I was running, so that was great. There are slots for IDs, credit cards, or cash and room for a single key as well. I somehow shoved in my electronic key, car key, and house key into the key slot and had no issue. The Armpocket also keeps my phone nice and dry, since we all know that I am a sweaty beast. My other armband would leave my cell phone covered in salt and sweat after a hot or long run.

Some other great features of the i-10 Armpocket are:
  • The back of the Armpocket that is against your arm is made of memory foam so the Armpocket will become more comfortable each time you use it and will not lose it's shape.
  • The plastic cover is very easy to use with the touch screen phone
  • Armpocket products are made of eco-friendly material (this is HUGE for my environmental side)
  • It comes in really cool colors
So, onto the fun part for you. Armpocket was kind enough to let me offer ONE Armpocket to a reader! This is my first giveaway, and I'm excited to partner with Armpocket for it! Enter in the Rafflecopter drawing for a chance to win! The first two options (Like Armpocket on Facebook and comment on their wall) are MANDATORY! The rest are optional! This giveaway will end Sunday June 2 at 11:59 EST.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Disclaimer: While Armpocket sent me their product to review for free and are supplying one product for this giveaway, I received no compensation for this post and all opinions expressed are my own.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Guest Post: Setting SMART Goals

I'm really excited to share my first guest post with you guys today! Michelle Pino of Skana Spa in Upstate New York reached out to me earlier this month and asked to share her tips for getting motivated and setting SMART goals. If you've been a reader for a while, you may recall that I wrote a post on Finding Your MotivationI am all about living a healthy lifestyle and encouraging others, so I am excited to share with you what Michelle has to say about goal setting! Even though May (National Health & Fitness Month) is almost over, that shouldn't stop you from setting health and fitness goals, especially since the unofficial kickoff of summer has just passed! Here is what Michelle has created for us today. Enjoy! 

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Set Realistic, Measurable and Time-Bound Fitness Goals To Inspire Your Fitness Success

Whether they are work goals, fitness goals or just general life goals, you've been told countless times that setting goals is the key to success; however, you need to know how to phrase your goals and set them in a way that is actually attainable! If you're stuck in a fitness rut, setting achievable and measurable goals is a great way to help you break out of it and achieve your fitness success. Setting fitness goals according to the SMART system ensures that you can track your progress and will actually be motivated to meet them!

Specific
Your fitness goals should never be vague! A common pitfall is setting a goal such as "I want to be in peak physical condition by the end of this year" or "I want to lose weight." Although both are fine goals, they have very little motivating power when stated in such a vague way.

Measurable
SMART Goals need a measurable component so that you can track your progress in achieving the goal. Thankfully, this is pretty easy for fitness-related goals; you can set goals such as a one-rep maximum for a bench press, jogging or cycling continuously for a certain number of miles or hitting a target body weight or body fat number. Having a concrete number to achieve pushes you harder to hit your goal by your target time frame.

Attainable
Fitness goals should be attainable on the specific time-frame you choose with healthy, consistent progress towards your goal. Setting fitness goals is an amazing help to your progress and motivation, but it's not going to take you from couch potato to world-champion triathlete in a few months. The feeling of success after having achieved a fitness goal is uplifting and euphoric; setting reasonable goals that still require you to push yourself to achieve them is a wise way to improve your health and fitness.

Relevant
What are you hoping to achieve with your fitness goals? Keep your goals relevant to your interests; a little fitness knowledge goes a long way here. If your desired end result is a lean and muscular body, set a goal to reduce your body fat percentage. Although any fitness goal will increase your level of general fitness, setting goals that are in tune with what sports you play or what you want your body to look like helps keep your eye on the prize.

Time-Bound
Countless people every year make resolutions on New Year's to become fit or to lost weight by the time next year rolls around. Quickly waning enthusiasm combined with a target date that's far away lead to apathy -- before you know it, it's October and nothing has changed! Setting shorter time-bound goals creates a sense of urgency that drives you to consistently make the changes in your life necessary to meet your goal, and ensure that you don't slip into the trap of constantly putting off exercise or transitioning to a healthy diet.

The true motivating potential of goal-setting is only relevant when you set achievable goals that push you to work hard and consistently to achieve it. Concrete goals that can be measured allow you to know when you have successfully hit your goal and help you track progress along the way. If you're in a fitness rut, set some short-term achievable fitness goals and let your motivation and confidence build from there!


May is National Physical Fitness & Sports Month, which makes for a great time to get out and get motivated!  Try creating your own inspiration board to help get on track.  Use images and quotes that inspire you to live a healthier, better life!


 1.     Love this Nike quote: so simple but so true! Source: Women's Gear

2.     I’m really inspired by yoga for a number of reasons and is the core of my inspiration board. Yoga focuses the mind and body, teaching ourselves to find a spiritual balance.  I also love that yoga can be done anywhere, even the beach!  Simple yoga poses are simple stretches that can be done in the comfort of your own home or when traveling.  Yoga is great for beginners and the more advanced athlete.  Source: Yoga Class
3.     An easy way to feel motivated is to buy some bright colored workout gear.  If you feel good wearing it, you’ll be more excited to wear it when you exercise.  Source: Zappos
4.     As part of my initiative to spend more time doing activities outdoors, I’ve started to learn to golf at Atunyote, a New York golf club near my work.  What I like about it is that it’s a leisurely sport, nothing too strenuous.   Source: Turning Stone Resort
5.     The best way to start is by adding more fruits and veggies to your regular routine.  Try a tasty green smoothie as your mid-morning snack.  Smoothies are a big trend right now.  They may look funky, but they taste great and can be adjusted to your liking! Source: Flickr



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Michelle Pino has provided these tips in hopes to educate others on how to lead a more motivating and less stressful life.  Michelle believes more focused approach put on our health will result in more balanced life.  Her hobbies include cooking, reading and learning about healthy lifestyles.  Michelle is thankful to have had the opportunity to work with Rachel and together share their ideas on “­­Undercover Diva: A Sitcom."



If you are interested in writing a guest post for Undercover Diva: A Sitcom, please contact me at any of the options listed under the "Contact Me" tab. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Very Rude Wake-Up Call

I went to my second strength training class last night, and we did all bodyweight exercises. At the end of the class, I looked like this:

Dead, but still smiling

I love this class, but I seem to always be the sweatiest one in the class and the class KILLS me. Apparently, running and being a half marathoner does NOT mean that you are in shape. Very rude awakening. At the end, when we did burpee-mountain climber burnouts and I almost vomited. It was that good. We did 5 series of pushups, abs (these workouts changed), mountain climbers, body squats, lunges, single leg balances, and planks. Once we finished these five series, we did the burpee-mountain climber burnouts: a series of 5, followed by 4,3,2,1. I was the last to finish because I was dying, but I finished! During our last sets of planks, my elbows kept slipping because I was so disgusting. I was dripping sweat onto the floor, but the trainer was nice and said "I think I read somewhere that people who are in shape sweat more than those who are not in shape." If that's true, then I must not be in that bad of shape because I always am disgusting during my runs or workouts. 

After I got home, I foam rolled, but my little legs are SUPER sore! Today is most definitely a rest day. I invited the trainers out for a beer tonight, so we'll see if they show up. I'm really looking forward to class next week! 

Remember, if you want to watch my life fall apart this weekend because I'm not being a good role model, follow me on Twitter and watch it all unfold. Just don't judge me for it when you see some ridiculous tweets, because I forewarned you ;) 

What is your favorite bodyweight exercise?
---Mine is planks, by far. 


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Noodle Arms

The workout schedule I created for myself last week has already been changed. Instead of doing just arms on Monday (in addition to my 4 mile run), I did 3ish miles in the morning, where it felt like I was swimming in the humidity, a 1.5 (mile and a half, not 15, thanks Beth for pointing this out!) mile run on the treadmill, and a total body weight lifting class. Yes, I went to a weight lifting class.


Yes, really. And another shocking thing? I LOVED it! It was at my university's gym and I thought I was going to be the only one in the class and that the male instructors would feel weird working with me. I approached the instructor and asked if the class was still going on and he told me yes and to hop onto a treadmill and do a 5 minute warmup. Apparently to me, warmup means "run at your regular pace or faster" because I was running at an 8:30 pace (on the faster side for me) and was sweaty by the time we started class. No one else had this issue. Ps. There were two other girls there besides me and only one boy.

We started with the machine and did our upper body workout. As the reps decreased and the weight increased, this is what I thought:


By the time we got to our last set of reps, my arms felt like noodles. I was struggling, big time. I tried to pick up my water bottle to drink some after we finished and I may have spilled on my shirt. I also couldn't lift it high enough to my mouth. Oops.

Afterwards we did stairs, and I felt like I was killing it. I'm going to thank my half-marathoning legs for helping me get through this, because I wasn't even really too sore on Tuesday after the workout, either. That being said, the trainers told us they were taking it easy on us yesterday because it was our first day, so I might eat those words after class tonight. I'll keep you updated. Yes, I'm going back tonight.


After we finished stairs, we did abs. Abs were challenging, but I was a shining star at the end of the workout with the plank. I had really great form (thanks for the compliment, trainers) and was not sweating it after reaching the one minute limit the trainers had set for us. I'm sore in the lower abs region, which is a good sign! Again, I think I can thank running for this.

My arms were killing me all Tuesday and I couldn't wash my hair after class on Monday. It took a lot of effort, but I did it. I'm excited to go back and hopefully make this class a regular in my schedule! I'm going to wait and see if I need to add in more leg work into my schedule I made since I was feeling good after class on Monday, but I'll know more after tonight.

As I was leaving the parking lot, two men walked past me and said "hey sweaty girl, looking good!" I don't think they realized that women don't like being objectified during/after workouts.

Ps. Can you tell that GIFs are like my new favorite things? They're hilarious and put everything I am feeling into a little animated picture for you to enjoy, since I don't know how to do that of myself ;)

Pps. If you follow me on Twitter, you might want to unfollow me Friday-Tuesday because I'm going to have a silly weekend and my might just watch my life fall apart virtually. I don't plan on being a good role model this weekend. That being said, if you want to watch it all happen, it'll be hilarious and I encourage you do to so.

Ppps. I have a guest post coming up soon (EEK! Exciting!), some product reviews, and a giveaway coming up in the near future. Stay tuned!

Happy Wednesday! 

Do you like GIFs? Have you ever taken a fitness class that you were afraid to take and found out that you really enjoyed it?