Weekending: Party, Party, Party!

Hi there! I know I say this often, but last weekend was SO MUCH FUN! Starting with a gym friends party on Friday night, continuing on to my party and then a Sunday full of errands, laughs and “Sunday Dinner” with RM, it was pretty awesome.

I’ve mentioned before how much I enjoy our “gym friend” get togethers. I’ve got a lot of friends from various groups, but my gym friends are a group of girls that get my intense workout mindset, love of trying out new classes, and can relate to my crazy schedule. After the week I had last week, the combination of those things, as well as some amazinggggg (healthy!) food and drinks helped relax me from the week and get me excited for the weekend. The cause for this gym friends party was to celebrate Jen’s birthday. Jen is a huge inspiration for working out and eating healthy- she has lost so much weight over the past couple of months and looks truly fantastic. She has been doing two-a-days and eating healthy and you know what? It’s paid off BIG TIME. I’m so proud of her!

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I made these and they were a big hit!
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I finally slept well on Friday night- I can’t tell you how happy that made me! Kickboxing was a blast- the crowds are back and I loved that I will be there for the next 2 weekends. Burning 531 calories in under an hour is a great way to start the day 🙂

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After my class, I went home and got into full party prep mode. Thankfully my sister was around to help! I made a crockpot chili, we made Stromboli’s and buffalo chicken dip and we had a bunch of veggies, crackers, hummus and some cookies. Oh… and a lot of wine 😉 We were SO LUCKY that the weather was warm and sunny because there certainly wouldn’t have been enough room in my apartment if we were all stuck in there! I loved that it was kind of a random group of people who came… well, random in that there were friends from multiple different groups: gym, college, home, RM’s family… the best part was everyone was having a great time mingling with each other, which makes “hosting” easier 😉 Big thanks to everyone who came- and thanks for the wine, too!

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Sunday was a busy day for RM and me. We woke up and had some healthy pumpkin protein “pancakes” before hitting the road to check out a health food store in Quincy. Good Health was amazing! If you’re in the hunt for a fully stocked healthy food store, you should definitely head to Quincy- they had everything!

From there, we did food shopping at Whole Foods, car shopping and then had Sunday dinner at his brother and sister-in-law’s. It was fun re-hashing the party with them 🙂

I finally got home and sat down to relax around 7:30- and I was definitely in bed before 9 and I loved every minute of it!

Questions for you: What was the best part of your weekend? Did you get outside to enjoy the beautiful weather on Saturday? Do you like hosting parties?

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This Week: Workouts, Weekend Recap, Things I’m Looking Forward To

Hi there! I hope you all had a great weekend. Mine was really fun, but also really busy. I was supposed to go to my gym friend, Jen’s, “Porch Friday” summer kickoff gathering, but after the week I had, I was beat and decided to lay low. I hate missing things, but knew I needed to take it easy since Saturday and Sunday were going to be nonstop. Instead, some wine and snacks at Piers Park helped me relax from the week.

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Saturday started with a super sweaty UXF Burn/SHRED class that I subbed at the Central Square BSC (my usual gym). It was awesome to see so many of my Wednesday and Thursday regulars in class! Here’s some of my new lulu that I bought 😉

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Paycheck + Lulu near my work= a little splurge 😉

From there, RM and I headed north for a BBQ at Christy and Jaime’s. Sadly, I didn’t take ANY pictures- whoops! But everything was amazing- the food, drinks, company, weather- all in all it was a great afternoon! From there, I headed to Liz’s house for a gym friends party. I always look forward to these nights because it’s so fun to chat with other instructors and share our crazy interesting teaching stories.

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(thanks for the photo, Liz! And hosting us 🙂 )

Sunday started with a UXF Burn class and then RM and I went for a nice, long 3 or 4 mile walk along the beach before going to Jess and Brian’s baby shower. They had it at Shake Shack in Harvard Square. I’ve never been there before, but I am sold- their burgers and fries were amazingggg. It was such a fun baby shower- they didn’t open gifts or play any games, which is more my style. We were able to chat and mingle- perfect!

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Phew! What a weekend- I love when I get to spend time with my college friends and it was fun having RM meet everyone! But, let me tell you- 3 parties and party food in 2 days makes me really ready for some clean eats. Indulgences are totally worth it (and sometimes why I workout 😉 ), though.

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I taught my 6am muscle class and did 15 minutes on the elliptical.
  • Tuesday- I ran 5 miles after work and it felt great! I had fast splits (for me!) and was able to clear my head.

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  • Wednesday- My new company had their summer outing after work so I got up to workout before I headed into the office. I was going to do a 2 mile jog and then body weight strength training but ended up running 3 miles and just some push-ups, squats, planks, etc.
  • Thursday- I taught SHRED and then Cardio Kickboxing. I did a 25-15-4 rep format for SHRED and liked it!
  • Friday- Rest day since I was teaching on Saturday and Sunday.
  • Saturday- I ran 2 miles on the treadmill before subbing UXF Burn/SHRED. We worked so hard and I loved every second of it!

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  • Sunday- I didn’t want to get out of bed, but I was happy I did. There were only 2 people in the UXF Burn class I subbed, but it was fun because I was able to do stuff I don’t usually get to do! Also, there was another instructor in the class who teaches Barre so I let her lead the last 5 minutes of core work and it was killer!

This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- By the time this post goes up I will have taught my 6am Muscle Class and done a little cardio after.
  • Tuesday- I’m running the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge after work. It’s a 3.5 mile race, so nothing too crazy.
  • Wednesday- I’ll either run or do some other cardio before teaching UXF Burn. I missed them last week!
  • Thursday- Teaching SHRED and Cardio Kickboxing.
  • Friday- Probably a rest day besides a walk at lunch.
  • Saturday- Back at the Oak Square YMCA for my Cardio Kickboxing class… I hope my front row is back 🙂
  • Sunday- I would LOVE to get some yoga in. I need to make that happen.

Things I’m Looking Forward To

I’m looking forward to running the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge as part of the team at my new company. Our shirts are so dorky, but it’s kind of funny! I’m also excited to go out with some former coworkers, including my friend Tim, later in the week. Other than that, I’m excited for a weekend where I really have nothing planned. I may head to the Cape with RM on Saturday, but if I ended up sticking around here I wouldn’t be mad at all. I want to get my hair highlighted, so that would be great if I could fit that in on Saturday.

Questions for you: What was the best part of your weekend? Have you been to Shake Shack? What are you looking forward to this week? Are you running the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge?

Weekending: “Ladies Night”, Zeke’s 1st Birthday and Local Supplier Meet & Greet at Whole Foods

You guys! This past weekend was busy, busy, busy…. but with all fun things so I can’t complain! I got a massage on Friday, which was a great way to end my “vacation” week and to kick off the weekend! After my massage, my friend Jess picked me up and we headed north for dinner in New Hampshire at Tortilla Flat with some of our other St. Michael’s friends. It may seem weird that we traveled all the way up there for dinner at a Mexican restaurant, but there was a Tortilla Flat near St. Mike’s and both Kia and Lauren worked there, which meant we went there… a lot… so  we had to check it out!

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Skinny Marg and a Combo Plate- nothing about Mexican food photographs well…

I have to share the cutest story from our dinner. There were 6 of us and all of a sudden a waitress brings over this little (5 or 6 year old) boy. Here’s how the situation went down:

Boy: Are you out for a ladies night?

Us: Yes, we are.

Boy: Well, you’ve come to the right place!

Us: Oh yeah? Why’s that?

Boy: Because I’m the ladies man!

So cute! We died laughing.

Luckily, it was an early night, which was good because I knew Saturday was going to be a big day. I cannot believe little Zeke is already ONE!!! It’s so crazy. Sara put on the most wonderful celebration- from the decorations to the food to the drinks to the company- everything was perfect! We lucked out with the weather, too. I’ll let the photos speak for themselves, but it was such a great day celebrating a very loved little boy!

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I mean, can you get any cuter than little Zeke in his 1 year old shirt with a bow-tie?!?! Love! Also love my Shapleigh girls and getting to spend an afternoon with them 🙂

Danielle and I headed back to MA early on Sunday since I had a blogger event to attend at Whole Foods.

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I’m always excited for blogger events, but I was especially excited about this one because I’ve been big into buying locally and organic and wanting to know where my food comes from. It was a small event, but there were a number of vendors with samples ranging from fish to prepared salads to cheeses and butters to muesli, pickels, salsa, ice cream and iced coffee. It was so great to chat with all of them to see how their products are made, where they are located and what makes them different than other similar items sold in grocery stores.

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I’m a big fan of good swag bags 😉 Some of my favorite things I tried were:

  • Cheeses and Sea Salt & Maple Butter from Vermont Creamery– I put some of this on my dad’s homemade bread it and it was absolutely amazing!!
  • Muesli from TuTu Muesli I anticipate early working hours, which means I’ll need to bring breakfast on the road with me so I’m looking forward to seeing how it goes with the sample that I received from TuTu. I bought some Muesli from Bob’s Red Mills and will likely do “over night oats” with that.
  • Salsa from Nola’s Salsa This stuff was absolutely delicious! There’s nothing better than fresh, homemade salsa and this totally fit the bill for that. The owner lived in Texas for a while and learned from the best. She only uses real ingredients and you can taste the difference. I can’t wait to open mine!
  • Ice cream from Tea-Rrific Wow. This tea-based ice cream was SO good. They actually brew the tea when making the ice cream so you could taste the specific tea flavors in each one. My favorite was the Masala Chai and the Chamomile- Perfect little sweet treat!
  • Cold Brew coffee from Grady’s Cold Brew– I gave up coffee about a year ago, but when I heard the vendor explain how it’s made without brewing coffee. Grady’s Cold Brew has less caffeine, it’s less acidic (much easier to drink!) and is easier on digestion than regular coffee. There’s no added sugar and the ingredient list is short: water, coffee, chicory and spices. All he added was a little almond milk for me and it was perfect!

Big thanks to Jess and Whole Foods Charles River Plaza for hosting such a great event… and providing us with some amazing swag bags with the products we were able to learn about and try.

Questions for you: How often do you get together with your girlfriends? What was the best part of your weekend? Do you like to shop locally or buy organic products? Have you ever heard of the ones I listed above?

Healthy Super Bowl Tips & A Commercial Workout

I doubt I’m shocking anyone when I say I really couldn’t care less about the Super Bowl. Even if the Patriots were playing, I really wouldn’t care. What can I say? I’m just not a sports girl!

With that said, I’m sure a lot of you may be sports people, so I thought I would post some tips to make healthy choices during a not-so-healthy day of the year.

Don’t show up to the party hungry

I always hear people talk about how they will starve themselves all day if they have a big dinner or party planned for the evening. This is the worst thing to do because as soon as you show up to the party, you’re going to stuff your face, right? I’ve been there and done that and not only does it make me feel to rude to hover by the food, shoveling in as much as I can as fast as I can, I feel gross once my body registers that it was full probably 20 minutes ago. Yuck. You’re also more likely to binge on the less healthy options because, let’s face it, when we’re hungry, hunger rules over any smart eating plans, right? So, have a healthy snack or small meal before you go to the party.

Stay away from the food table

This stems right off of the tip above this. Even if I have a healthy snack before I go to a party, if I find myself standing by the food table, I’m going to munch. And much. And much. You know what I’m talking about, don’t you? You’re not hungry and you know you’re not hungry but the buffalo dip/spinach and artichoke dip/chips and salsa/cheese and crackers/etc. are screaming your name because they smell and look so good. So, you let yourself have a small bite, right? And then what happens? You end up hovering near the food table and, again, eating when you’re not hungry. So, STEP AWAY from the food table and focus on conversations, people watching and game watching.

Make and bring a healthy snack option

If you know yourself and know you’re going to want to eat at the party you’re going to, pick a few healthy apps/snacks to make and bring so that you can eat those rather than some of the other unhealthier options. All of the blogs I’ve been reading have been showing “healthified” game day snack options and they look delicious!! Think: healthy buffalo dip, healthy spinach and artichoke dip, fruit or veggie platter, etc. There are so many delicious, yet healthy, options!

Make a plate of things to snack on

I never do this, although I probably should. Instead, I tend to “hover” near the food table and continuously grab things to eat. If you take a small plate and fill it with things you want to eat, you’ll probably end up eating less than if you just keep snacking. Seeing what you have to eat will help with portion control and sticking to that portion control.

Choose a lighter drink option

Beers are super easy (and fitting) to drink during a daytime game or party, but the calories add up reallll quickly with beers. Instead, try drinking something lighter like vodka soda’s or a lighter beer like some of those 60 calorie beers. Also, try drinking a water or seltzer water in between each drink… this will definitely cut down on how much you drink!

Work out before you go… or during commercials (if your friends won’t think that’s weird!)

I always get in a good workout before I know I’ll be indulging at a party. I also think it’s fun to do something during the commercials or half time, so that’s why I’ve made this workout for you. How convenient, right?! 😉

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So! I hope that helped. Are you going to a party today or are you hosting one? What are you making/bringing? What’s your favorite “healthified” recipe?

Celebrations & Decorating for Christmas

The past weekend was full of some of my favorite things: birthday celebrations, lots of girl time and decorating for Christmas. Saturday was my sister’s birthday, so Friday night we went out with our closest girlfriends to celebrate both Danielle’s and Amy’s birthdays. It was such a fun night! If you missed my post on Saturday, click here for the recap.

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Saturday morning, I headed to Brighton to teach kickboxing. From there, I ran errands and then met Danielle and Amy for lunch at The Asgard in Central Square. The last time I was there was for Athena’s birthday back in August. The lunch was SO good. seriously we were all gushing about it!

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My first stop of the night was at my friend Lauren’s apartment in Malden. My friend Liz came with me, which was an added bonus! Lauren’s apartment was so cute and festive and they even had a “photo booth” area set up. How fun is that?! I love getting together with my SMC girls.

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Like my skirt? It’s my new sparkle skirt from the Gap and I am obsessed with it!!

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Around 9, Liz and I grabbed a cab and headed to Scholars for Danielle and Amy’s birthday celebrations. I haven’t been OUT OUT in the city in so long.

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We randomly ran into my old yoga instructor, which was SUCH a fun surprise! I love this girl to pieces and hate that I don’t see her every week anymore:(

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Sunday morning I woke up feeling: A. Happy I decided to not have that last drink at the bar and B. happy that I was home by 12:30. I had a full day of errands, so after I relaxed and had breakfast, I got busy! I went to the Christmas Tree Shop, Market Basket and Home Depot and then I spent the afternoon decorating my apartment! Even though it’s only me and my apartment is small, I couldn’t imagine not decorating for Christmas! My tree is small, but it’s perfect for my apartment. I can’t wait to decorate it this week!

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This was exactly what I needed to get me into the spirit! There’s nothing like the feeling of having a freshly cleaned and newly decorated apartment!

Questions for you: What was the best part of your weekend? Do you get a real Christmas tree or fake one?