Work It Out 4/9-4/15

For a while there, every run was new and exciting and every day I would write about it. Well, now that pretty much every work out I do (except my new favorite speed ones!!) are things I’ve do often or at least have done before, I’ve decided that, unless something is super exciting, to write about workin’ it out for the week as a whole and share my thoughts at the end of the training week. So without further adieu, this is how I worked it out last week

  • Monday: 3 miles with Jason
    I love Monday mornings these days! Jason is just really getting into running, so I meet him for some easy paced miles and it gives us time to chat just the two of us. Not that I don’t love the men in our lives, but it is so nice to have the one on one time to just talk. Every week Jason gets faster and better, and I’m so proud of him!
  • Tuesday: Quick upper body strength training & Linda’s Spin
    Got to the gym early to do a short, but tough upper body work out. Bis, tris, shoulders, and chest. Then went into spin for happy sweat drippy time. Linda’s been working on building us all up to a higher flat road. Mine has been 10 for a few months and the thought of going up to 11 is a little intimidating, but the more we test it out, the more I realize that I’ll be able to hang.
  • Wednesday: Tempo Run & Core/leg strength at PT
    5 miles including 1 mile warm up and cool down. The goal for the tempo miles was 9:09, and I did them in 9:06, 9:06, 8:46. I was so exhausted by the end of the third one that I had to walk the first few seconds of my cool down, but then brought it back to a jog to finish it out. This run was tough, but luckily I ran with my speedy friend Ashley who kept me going when I wanted to die. After our run, I did my exercised at PT which I always forget to count, but they make me sweat and sometimes even get me out of breath, so I guess they should count 😉
  • Thursday: Easy bike ride
    Rode to coffee and back with Steve. 9.15 miles @ 14.6 (I think?? Around there) pace. It was nice and I love getting some morning time with Steve before we both get too busy.
  • Friday: Long Run
    This was without a doubt my favorite run this week! I had 10 miles scheduled, and I was not feeling like doing it solo. Luckily Stacey agreed to run with me for 8.5 of it, so I got to our meeting spot a little early, ran a 1.5 mile loop and then met up with her. She wrote this really awesome post about it that you should read! I love it because she says really nice things about me 😉 But seriously, she was an awesome running partner! It felt like our pace was perfect (I hope I didn’t slow you down, girl!!), we chatted the entire time, and then at the end I pushed her to finish up 9 miles which is now her PDR!! So I ended with 10.5 for the day, felt great almost the entire time and ended up with an average pace of 10:26.
  • Saturday: Firefly Run 5K
    Race recap coming soon! But long story short, this race was super fun, and I ran it with my two best friends. It was Bethany’s first race and she rocked it! I’m super proud of her!
  • Sunday: ZZzzzzzz
    I had actually been planning on spin class, then woke up and asked Steve to go for a bike ride instead, then by the time I did some blogging, I knew I’d be pressed for time before rehearsal, and decided I deserved a day of rest, so I took full advantage of it.

And that my friends, is how I worked it out last week. Fascinating, right?

How did you work it out? Any super awesome training runs? Races? Headstands?

Spin & Speed (the legal running kind)

It’s Wednesday, which means tomorrow is Thursday and then Friday Friday gotta get down on Friday! Oh Rebecka Black. I wish you’d come out with an other song for me to make fun of. I so enjoyed the first one. Now that you’re super impressed by my knowledge of the days of the week, let’s talk about something slightly more exciting. Like how yesterday was the BEST SPIN CLASS EVER!!!! Why?? Well, they accidentally over filled the class and so Linda chose not to ride so someone could have her bike. This meant she had the entire hour to walk around checking our gears and our pace. Some people may not prefer this, but in case you didn’t notice, I have teacher’s pet syndrome. I want nothing more than the approval from my teacher and since usually I am the teacher, I have to get this in my work out classes. And also I make Steve constantly give me praise. Seriously, even in college I hung my papers up on the refrigerator. Remember that Heather? Our fridge was covered in theatre history exams.

Anyway, Linda came over to me a few times and didn’t tell me to pedal faster and didn’t adjust my gear like she did to some people which I took as a sign that I was at the right place. Then we were on the biggest hill of the class and I was dripping sweat and pedaling along at gear 20 when she came over, looked at my display and told me “GOOD JOB!!!!!” Actually I believe her exact words were “Good girl” kind of like I’m a dog, but I’m totally fine with that. In fact my ballet teacher used to say that all the time, and I always found it cute and not patronizing like she found me to be a puppy. This dubbed Tuesday April 3rd 2012 as best spin class ever.

You know what’s weird? Writing about my training these days. I felt like when I was training for PF Chang’s everything was so new and every long run was worthy of a recap and I had so many thoughts and so much to say. Now that I’ve run 2 half marathons, talking about how I ran 10 miles doesn’t seem all that exciting. You know what I am super pumped about though? Speed work!!

This will be me by the time RnR Seattle rolls around!

Without a doubt, my favorite part of this new training plan. Maybe I’m not breaking any PDRs right now, but speed training is super new to me and I am absolutely loving following a real training plan. I mean I know that Smart Coach doesn’t actually care if I do his/her/it’s work outs, but it makes me feel accountable, and I am really appreciating having the speed goals set out for me ahead of time. The question I kept asking all my smart runner friends (or smart runners that I think are really cool and want them to be my friend) is

“But how fast do I goooo????”

I honestly had no idea. Well Smart Coach is…smart. He knows. Actually, I think she’s a woman. Because she’s so smart. She knows 😉 Today she told me to run 5 miles including 1 mile warm up, 3 miles @ 9:13, and a 1 mile cool down. I woke up, avoided going outside because I was not excited about going for this run, and sure I was going to suck. Way to stay positive, Ari. Then I started and felt AWESOME. My warm up felt light and I was really enjoying being outside and running. I started my first tempo mile, looked down at my garmin to see an 8:37 pace flash up. COOL! But definitely not sustainable, so I chilled out a little and backed off and my tempo miles ended up looking like this




So I’m so serious about this no cheating/pausing business that I even ran around a parking lot during my first tempo mile so I wouldn’t have to stop. But then I got pissed in the last one because I had to stop and use the bathroom, and I know that little breather made my last mile faster, so while I was super excited about it, I don’t feel like that last one is completely legit, and I’m annoyed because I didn’t want to stop. Whatev, I still killed my tempo goal and ended on total runners high!

It’s different to feel that kind of excitement and not have it be after a long run. It’s weird to say “I had the most awesome 5 mile run today!!!” But with the slow and steady approach to long runs (that I probably should have followed more closely all along), I find then nice, but less exciting and fulfilling if that makes sense. I mean, I know they need to get done, but running faster? Now that is something that makes me excited! Meeting and exceeding goals? Sign me up!

I seriously can’t wait to run an other race and see what I can do! Pat’s Run is coming up which is 4.2 miles. I *think* if I really push and run with Speedy Gonzales, I can run with a sub 9 min/mi average. That’s the goal.

Ohhh, and lastly, last night I had dinner with some fabulous AZ Blogger ladies, and somehow ended the night with only a lame picture of my salad. Sad. It was really nice to see Emily and Estela again, and to finally meet Ali! As usual, I carpooled with Nicole, and made her late. I suck. After dinner, Nicole and I grabbed fro yo (Umm, I think if neither of us felt embarrassed about it, we would end up meeting for fro yo about twice a day) and sat and chatted for a while (naturally). Man you get the two of us Chatty Kathys together and we could probably talk for a week straight! By the waaaayyyy, Monday is Nicole’s birthday in case you wanted to head over to her blog and wish her a happy birthday, or by her a BMW.

I’m off to work. Have a fabulous day everyone!!

What motivates you when it comes to work outs/training plans?? What part makes you the most excited?


Mac Visits: Day 2


I hope you realize that if you ever want to come and visit me, a few things will happen.

  1. I will cook you lots and lots of food, most of which will be “Skinnified”.
  2. You will get dog hair all over you. The thing is, unless I vacuum every surface of my house 10x a day, followed by some good old lint rolling, Winston’s hair will win this battle, so I have just kind of learned to live with it. Things to consider before taking up an offer to hang on my couch/air mattress.
  3. You will get forced encouraged into workouts you probably never wanted to do have been dying to try! A few friends can attest to this.

Mac and I started our Thursday morning with spin class! I snuck him into the gym while rude girl wasn’t looking. Take that rude girl! HAH! Then we did some strength training (that’s twice in one week, friends!!), and went into class. I used to take Amanda’s Thursday class pretty regularly, but then I started taking Thursdays as a rest day and became pretty dedicated to Linda, you know my spin teacher bff that doesn’t even know my name, but I think she’s so cool! Well, I was surprised when a new teacher walked in and announced she’d be subbing.

This teacher, Jenna, was ridiculous! Awesome. but ridiculous. Imagine 80s workout video (ie: Suzanne Summers) meets spin class. She was overly enthusiastic, but it was cracking me up more than annoying me and her class kicked my butt! The only thing that bothered me was that she never told us where to be gear wise. She just kept saying things like “Bump it up!” “More gears!!” Well I realized pretty quickly, when I was at gear 24 (the highest the bike goes) and she was still telling people to add gears, that perhaps I wasn’t quite understanding what she meant. Part of my brain spent a lot of class stressing about how I couldn’t be sure if I was doing it right, but tried my best to just enjoy the class and not worry about being “right”. Easier said than done for this type A personality. I ended the class a sweaty mess, and I definitely felt like I got a great workout!

After class, we cleaned ourselves up then went to meet my dad and Hermano at Golf Land for some mini golf! I am so bad at mini golf, but I’ve always really loved it. Mac and I started talking in the parking lot about how neither of us are very good at mini golf, so we’re not as competitive as usual–we only like to actually put forth competitive effort with things we are skilled in, otherwise it can be embarrassing 😉 I also mentioned how my dad and Hermano are both super competitive just like us, and within minutes of playing my dad was haggling me like the opposing team at a sports game!

The funniest part is that my dad is actually really good at mini golf, but he looks absolutely ridiculous! He gets in this deep squat and takes what feels like hours to make his turn. It was cracking me up, but apparently it worked because he won with a 45! I came in second, then Hermano, and Mac got an honorable 4th place :)

The dragon!! This hole used to scare the crap out of me as a kid!

I used to hate this one! Hermano took about 15 swings hitting it everyone except where it was supposed to go. Then I schooled him and got it on my first shot. ;)

Tick tock, tick tock.

Probably gloating his victory.

After mini golf, we grabbed some fro yo, then headed back to my place so Mac could watch the Kentucky game and I could get some work done. Then, I went out to rehearsal, and the rest of the night was pretty uneventful. We had an other super late night with a 10:30 bed time. Ummm yeah, we’re old. I should maybe be embarrassed, but I’m totally okay with it!

Happy Tuesday


Today is the best day. You wanna know why? Well for one thing it’s my brother Charlie’s birthday–happy birthday Charlie!! For an other thing, I have the day completely off. WHOOOO!!!! Also, I started my day off in Linda’s spin class with Kara.

While we’re on the subject of spin, check out this awesome one from Sunday’s 90 min class!

After class, we got coffee from my newest love, Dutch Bros, and headed back to my house for a day of baking!

Definitely a much better start than I got yesterday. Sooooo, yesterday I went to meet Jason for a run, and he was running a few minutes late. I could have gone out and gotten an extra mile or so in, but instead, I sat in my car going through my google reader. Good job, Ari. Way to know what’s important. So Jason comes to my window and says “I guess you had a rough morning too.” Huh???? What??? I mean I’m not really awake yet, and I definitely did not brush my hair, but how is this any different from every other Monday we meet at 7am?

There’s a first time for everything. Luckily, I had only just gotten gas about a mile back, but holy crap–I can’t believe I did that!

Sometimes I suck at life, and that's sad. So is my sunburn.

Ohhhh, life is hard when you’re unobservant like me. Anyway, today has been fabulous, and totally chill, but still productive–exactly what I needed. I have a birthday dinner to head to tonight and then I get to pick up one of my very favorite people on Earth from the airport!!!!

Mac, you were planning on stuffing Sylvi in your Diana Ross suit case, so we could recreate this moment right? Okay, good.

Okay, lots of getting ready to do. Have a fabulous day everyone!

Weekend Recap

I miss the fancy camera. Waaaahhhh.

Happy Monday, friends! I’m flying high on about 4 hours of sleep. WHEEEEEEEE!!!!! To be honest, I haven’t gotten a decent night’s sleep since Steve left for LA and I am simultaneously slap happy, grouchy, bitchy, and delirious. I also have a week filled with long days, and my extra grouchy time may or may not be quickly approaching (you’re welcome), so Jason and I basically decided this morning, that I should do the world a favor and just hide out in a cave for a while to avoid offending the masses. Unfortunately, that is entirely impossible, so I’m going to try to focus on the moments of slap happy ridiculousness, because those are the best part of exhaustion!

To be honest, aside from feeling like I want to take a week long nap, the past few days have been pretty fantastic. Saturday I had a super full work day, then Deann came over and we worked on some stuff for her wedding. I am pretty much the least crafty person on earth, but when it’s not super complicated, and I know exactly what to do, I actually find simple craft activities strangely therapeutic. I made us a delicious dinner of cornbread crusted chicken tenders with a creamy maple mustard dipping sauce and kale chips. You better believe that when the fancy camera is back, I will be recreating this because it was AMAZING and I can’t wait to share the recipe! I also made some more donuts for dessert. Let’s just say it’s a good thing Deann took most of the rest home because I probably would have eaten them all that night! Yum!!

Here is a crappy picture from my android. And now I want to eat more donuts.

Yesterday, I met Christina and Diana for my fav spin class! Linda kicked my butt, like usual, but I was especially excited to drip pools of sweat yesterday for some reason. Must be the week off from running ( :( )!

It was so awesome to finally meet Diana too! She is just as hilarious and awesome in person as on her blog, and it totally felt like working out with an old friend! I seriously can’t get over the awesome friendships I have made through blogging!

After spin, Christina came over for brunch. I made my own southwest version of Caitlin’s Spinach and Goat Cheese Cornbread Quiche.

I miss the fancy camera. Waaaahhhh.

It was probably the most delicious non dessert item I have made in a long time. Again, can’t wait to get some actually good pictures of it so I can post the recipe for my version!

This morning, even though I was super exhausted, when my alarm went off at 6 to go run, I was still pretty excited. I have been in quite a bit of pain lately–enough that I actually took KT’s advice to take a week off from running, so I was very anxious to get out there this morning! I got there early and did just under 2 miles on my own at a 9:20 average pace, then Jason arrived and mentioned that he was ready to move up to longer intervals! We had started using the Galloway method, running 3 min, walking 1 min. We were up to a 5:1 ratio, but today he wanted to move up to 1 mile intervals! You don’t have to ask me twice!!

Not only did Jason totally bump up his running time, but his overall pace improved and this was the first run where he had all negative splits!!! I am so proud!!! I never imagined I would be helping anyone with their running! I remember feeling shocked when people started to ask me for food and weight loss advice, but I just never in a million years expected to be pushing others to run and helping them train. I mean I’ve always been one to drag someone to a group fitness class, or suggest a gym date, but I just really can’t believe how much has changed in such a short amount of time!

There is honesty no better feeling than helping someone else achieve their goals. I mean, that’s the entire reason I blog in the first place, because I want to inspire others, and I hope that someday something I write makes a difference in even one person’s life, and that they are better because of me. That would honestly be the greatest gift. Sorry for being so cheesy! I’d like to say it’s temporary, but I was absolutely born this way and intend to stay cheesy and sentimental forever and ever. 😉


Weekly Workouts

Hello friends! Life seems like it has been crazy busy lately. It’s all been good stuff, but it’s nice to take some time to breathe and have some much needed me time today.

Considering how exhausted I was from The Lost Dutchman, I had a surprisingly productive work week of work outs. I took two full, amazing total rest days, then got out for a slow 3.7 mile run, a couple easy-ish bike rides, followed by a super awesome 25 mile ride on Saturday and spin class yesterday. I can’t even tell you how in love I am with my bike! I am not the fastest on it by any means, but I love having a second, less hard on the body form of cardio that I can do outside! And you know what’s awesome? I have ended every ride so far feeling like I could just keep going for miles and miles if I had the time/desire. Plus, I’ve been using it to get to work when I can. I love feeling like I am multi tasking by commuting and exercising at the same time. Yes folks, that is the highlight of my life. Jealous?

A few days ago, I read a post on Sarah OUaL’s blog that got me super excited! Did you know the garmin has interval workouts, so you can do your own speed drills without a track? Check out her post for awesome pictures and step by step instructions! Ever since I read it, I was super excited to try it. I’d been feeling a little bit like the running motivation bandwagon dropped me off for a little pit stop then bolted and was suddenly no where in site, and since I currently don’t have a big race on the calendar (hey self, let’s fix that ASAP!), I needed something new to pump me up.

This morning I planned to run 3 miles with Jason, and I decided to get there early and give this speed interval thing a shot. You know, try to be a real, legit runner or something. I thought I would HATE that I couldn’t see my pace, only the remaining distance and laps, but actually I think it was a blessing in disguise. I set it up for 4 x 0.5 mi intervals with 2 minutes of rest in between. So I just ran as fast as I could for each segment and hoped for the best. Turns out 1/2 a mile is a little longer than one would imagine. I started off booking it, then was like “I must be done by now, right?” Only to look down and discover I’d gone about .15 miles. Basically each rest period, I kind of thought I was going to die if I had to go out again, but I finished and I’m actually pretty proud of myself for how I did!

My goal was to keep each interval at an 8:15 pace and in the back of my mind I was like “Hah–yeah, that’s a nice goal. We’ll see if that happens.” Well I finished the 2 miles (active time, not including rests) in 16:11 which is about an 8:05 average pace! Boo ya stupid negative brain! Look at me! I’ll be doing this sub 8 in no time, bitch. Sorry. I cursed. It happens sometimes.

Okay, so can some smart person pretty please teach me how to upload my splits onto my computer?? I opened the garmin training center and all I see is some graph I don’t understand, and I want to see how I did on each section.  Ugghh, technology and I do not get along very well.

So to help keep myself motivated, I scheduled in all of my work outs for the week, and here’s what it looks like:

Monday: 4x800s + 3 easy miles
Tuesday: Spin + strength (omg strength training! ew)
5 mi tempo (or whatever crazy speeds Ashley decides we will run)
Active rest–easy bike ride
Long run…alllllll alone. Wahhh. I’ll prob end up doing 10 miles, but I’m hoping to push myself for a few more.
20 mile bike ride

Anyone want to run with me Friday??? It will be so fun, I promise.

My New Training Plan

This was seriously the sweatiest class ever. I hadn't felt like I'd gone to class and really given 100% in a while because I was taking it easy before the race and then I got sick, but yesterday I totally felt like I was back and resumed my flat road at gear 10!

After completing my first half marathon, the big question on my mind was where is the food?!?!?! what next? Even after registering for The Lost Dutchman 1/2 Marathon, I wasn’t really sure what to do with my training plan now that I already know I can run the distance. All I know is this time I’d like to run it faster, and soon I’d like to run one in less than 2:10, and maybe by next year in 1:XX:XX!!! Is that enough goals yet? Well, I’ve made a decision on one more, but I’ll get to that in a minute. The real question became

How do I get faster and more comfortable with the distance??

I read a lot of blogs. A lot of blogs. Those links are some fabulous ladies that are speedier than me and inspire me to work harder and run faster. I looked at the types of things they seem to do, and tried to copy. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery! So, I made a plan, scheduled everything into my phone until race week, and aside from a couple skipped work outs due to sickness, I have stayed on track so far and it’s been going really well!

Here is my plan. It’s the same days every week so it’s easy to remember. Plus every morning my phone goes off and says things like “Yo, bitch! Do a speed run.” Okay, it doesn’t curse at me, but I kind of wish I would have set it to say that because it makes me laugh.

Mondays–Speed work. 3 miles with sprint intervals.

I only kind of thought I was going to die. Sprint intervals are hard, but I can already feel just how worth it they are! Sub 9 min/mi average pace?! That is speedy for me!


This was seriously the sweatiest class ever. I hadn't felt like I'd gone to class and really given 100% in a while because I was taking it easy before the race and then I got sick, but yesterday I totally felt like I was back and resumed my flat road at gear 10!

Wednesdays–Tempo run with warm up mile, middle miles shooting for 9 min/mi, then a cool down. That is a tempo run, right? I’m still not sure I completely understand haha. These change distance. Today was 4 (well, 4 cut slightly short on the cool down–whoops), next week is 5, then 6, then 5.

Warm up at 10:17, then 9:01, 8:43 (yes!!!!), and a cool down at 10:02. Not too shabby.

Thursdays–off/upper body

Fridays–Long run. This Friday is 15 miles. Good lord. Anyone want to come along?? Even just for a few miles?? Please! Next week is 12, and then I don’t remember.

Saturdays–off/upper body–maybe if I give myself 2 possible days to strength train I will actually make one of them happen!


I am really loving this so far because it gives every work out a specific purpose. If I just have to do a medium length run, it is easy to skip and say “Well, I know I can run 4 miles, so what is that really going to do for me? I’ll skip it today.” Today I didn’t feel like going. I wanted to be lazy. I laid around in bed for a long time being lazy, and you know what? It felt pretty amazing and I kinda needed it, but that didn’t mean I had an excuse not to make my run happen, and I knew if I had to do a 5 mile tempo run next week, I would be unprepared if I didn’t do 4(ish) miles today.

This will get me through to a hopefully awesome finish at The Lost Dutchman, and then I’m not 100% sure what is on the agenda. I was all but ready to sign up for the RnR San Diego full marathon, but then I was talking to my spin teacher about racing and wanting to sign up for a full and I mentioned San Diego and she told me it was miserable and slanted and humid and that she would NEVER do it again. She strongly suggested that I not do it for my first marathon, and I plan on taking her advice. I would really like to run a full this year, but it feels like the timing just will not be right, and like my best bet is to wait and do the full at PF Chang’s next year. That will give me perfect training weather and a lot of time in between to improve as a distance runner and hopefully complete more half marathons. I wish it wasn’t so far away, but it will be here before I know it and I’m sure I will have lots to do in the meantime!

What If…?

Look at all of those tasks checked off! I love checking things off. It's one of the best feelings ever. So now that I said that, I kind of wonder how I have any friends when my greatest happiness is making check marks...

Well, life didn’t seem to waste any time getting busy again. I thought this week was going to be super mellow, but already I feel slightly behind–whoops. Yesterday I did get to spend some time on my to do lists at Starbucks.

Look at all of those tasks checked off! I love checking things off. It's one of the best feelings ever. So now that I said that, I kind of wonder how I have any friends when my greatest happiness is making check marks...

I actually got quite a few of this new list checked off too. Yesssss!

And I still found time to cook a seriously awesome dinner.

Today was filled with spinning, working (including an AWESOME rehearsal that I am feeling fab about!) and family. Busy busy busy, but all good stuff.

So here’s what I’ve been feeling confused by: Eating healthy and eating carbs. I mean, I eat carbs. I love carbs. I know that whole grains are healthy. However, this week I’ve been trying to clean up my diet a little for several reasons (PF Chang’s, post holiday blah feeling, post vacation blah feeling, etc.), but when I begin to think of healthy meals–especially dinner–my mind focuses immediately on lean protein and veggies. Then I have to remind myself to eat carbs so I choose sweet potatoes instead of green veggies and call it good. I wish there was just a clear cut plan: The Entire Week Leading Up To Your First Half Marathon, If You Are 26 Years Old, Slow, Mildly Funny, and Jewish You Should Eat _______. Can someone create that for me please?

Also, I realized one more reason why I am so freaking nervous. My 3 previous races, I was running a distance I had already conquered. 3.1, 6.2. I knew I could complete those distance. I know can’t is not an option, but I can’t help that nagging piece in the back of my mind that wonders what if…?

Okay, but for real, it’s going to be fine. It’s going to be better than fine. It’s going to be amazing. I just wouldn’t be me if I didn’t have a little anxiety about it 😉

Half Marathon Week & Movie Thoughts


It feels a little surreal. In case I haven’t beat this thought into the ground, in October I could barely run 3 miles. I had given up the idea of running because I was so sure I couldn’t do it, but inspired by training for and completing the Susan G Komen 5K, I nervously signed up to run my first half marathon. Every night before a long run I would toss and turn all night long because I was so nervous that I wouldn’t be able to complete my mileage the next morning, and it wasn’t until I hit double digits in my first solo long run, that I finally started to believe that I can do this.

So here we are. The race is exactly 1 week away and I am filled with nervousness, anxiety, excitement, and anticipation. Yesterday Kara and I completed out last “long” run in our training.

Check out that time! That is speedy for me!!

It felt really good. I’ve been feeling so slow and sluggish, and it was really nice to prove to myself that I could still maintain a decent pace. I almost feel like I don’t know what to do with myself this week. I know I’m supposed to cut back on my mileage, but it just feels so weird. I started today at the gym with Kara doing some upper body/abs and an awesome spin class with Linda my favorite spin teacher!

My plan for work outs for the rest of the week is this:

Monday–3 miles (hopefully I’ll take my favorite furry running buddy with me!) + physical therapy (Yes, my physical therapy is a legit work out. I get all kinds of sweaty.)

Tuesday–Linda’s spin class

Wednesday–Sentimental 2-3 miles around the duckies with Kara

Thursday–Yoga. I found a nice looking studio right by the duck lake, so I’m hoping to find a easy class to take that will get me nice and loosened up.

Friday–Long walk with the puppies


Sunday–Holy crap.


Anyone have any brilliant thoughts or advice on that plan?

In other news, I’ve been staying on top of my award season movie list! In the past week, I’ve seen:

The Descendants


I absolutely loved everything about this movie. I laughed, I cried, and I was engaged the entire time. I was also really impressed with how human and vulnerable George Clooney was the entire film. I’ve never been his biggest fan, but I loved him in this movie. If you like movies about humans/life/relationships, then this is a must see!



I almost couldn’t believe that after seeing The Descendants, I was seeing something equally incredible. I don’t know if a movie has ever been so equally hilarious and moving at the same time. I laughed so loudly, then 10 minutes later I was a sobbing mess. I really appreciate how both of the last two films have found the humor in movies that could have been just depression city. Life is funny, and even life’s tragedies are sometimes funny. If you like movies at all, see 50/50.



I liked Moneyball. It’s not a typical “Ari movie”, but I did enjoy it. I thought the whole statistical concept was interesting, and surprisingly found myself with an emotional connection to Billy Beane at the end of the film. If you like sports movies, you will probably like Moneyball more than me, but I enjoyed it and was glad I saw it.

Also friends, the dollar theater is where it’s at! Even though it doesn’t cost $1 anymore, Steve and I saw two movies yesterday and paid less money all together (4 tickets) than we paid for one ticket to see The Descendants. Thank you Tempe Cinemas! Too bad your seats are super uncomfortable, but I guess that’s what you get for $3 a ticket 😉



Busy Bee


You know, for mostly being off this week, I cannot believe how busy I’ve been. My reader has almost 100 blogs lined up waiting for me to read them. I just haven’t really been home, or if I have, people have been there and I’ve been really enjoying the time to do fun things. I’m not much of a sit at home type of person. But there are lots of work things I’ve been neglecting, so today I brought my lap top and to do list over to The Bux in order to get some things done.

This week has been pretty good about feeling like I’m back on track. I haven’t really talked about it,  but most of this month I just haven’t been feeling like I’ve been making the best choices for my body. Too many extra cookies and treats, too many skipped runs, and just a general lack of motivation. I know it’s normal, and especially now that I believe I am fully capable of completing this half marathon, and it’s now dark and cold at the time I used to run, it’s easy to justify hitting the snooze button. But this week has been better. There’s been some spinning.

Some running (well one day of running, but I also plan on running Friday and Sunday!)

And just in general more mindful eating. Don’t get me wrong, I still plan on enjoying the holiday treats, but I had been ignoring my tummy telling me when I was full and not stopping to think and decide if I actually really wanted something before eating it. If I really listen to my body and take my time to make decisions, I am 100x more likely to not feel guilty about what I eat because, honestly, sometimes I really do want to eat a cookie, and there is nothing wrong with that.

Yesterday was so exciting for me. You’re going to think I’m ridiculous, but whatev. I haven’t had a chance to really cook in what feels like forever. I’d been eating fast and easy and lots of TJ’s frozen enchiladas and Progresso light soups. Don’t judge me. But last night I invited my friend Ashley over for dinner which meant I had to actually cook. I had no idea what to make and no recipe, and I decided to throw something together and hope it turned out awesome. I’m really trying to get away from relying on recipes and take chances and try things that sound good to me. It’s okay if it doesn’t work every time, but last night was a huge success!

"Hey cute husband, make me look cute while I cook, ok?" Is that a slight double chin I see? Apparently Steve has forgotten the rules.

After dinner, Ashley and I baked some cookies. Yes, I’m crazy and actually have not quite hit my baking limit yet. I usually don’t like to bake with others because I’m a control freak a little particular, but Ashley was a great baking buddy and didn’t seem too put off by my bossiness. Sorry about that, Ashley. I hope you still want to be my friend after I spent the evening bossing you around like you were one of my students 😉

Look at us, baking together. It's as if I actually work well with others!

The dough was really yummy. I generally don't like the dough to healthier cookies (they always just taste so much better baked), but this dough was really good!

While we waited on the cookies to bake, Winston was working on his cuteness. He has to keep up with his sister :)

I've never met a dog that likes to be held as much as Winnie. Look at that face!

Finally our cookies were done and we got to decorate them!

Apparently when you buy your red food coloring at Walmart, what you actually get is pink frosting.

I can’t even tell you how nice it was to be able to spend the evening cooking and baking absolutely stress free. Happy holiday time to MEEEEE!!!!



Oooooohhh Cut Footloose!

First you've got to turn it arrroooouunndd. Then put your feet on the groo-ooouu--uuund.

Is there anything better than doing jumps in spin class while singing along to Footloose?

What about moving through lots of different positions and paces to this song?

Both in one class? Let me just say there were lots of people turning their heads while pedaling to see who the freak was that was singing along. It was me!!! Sorry. I have no shame. The right music totally pumps me up in a work out, especially in spin class. I mean, we’re all just in that same room with nothing to look at other than the puddles of sweat (or maybe it’s just by my bike that there is a puddle of sweat), and the music is played loud (at least it should be), so when a good song comes on, no matter how tired I am, I get a burst of energy and can’t help but sing along. I know what you’re thinking, but I really can’t help it. I’ve heard rumors of karaoke spin classes. I honestly can’t think of a way to work out that would be more fun!

First you've got to turn it arrroooouunndd. Then put your feet on the groo-ooouu--uuund.

Oh spin class. I really love you.

For me, this just reiterates the important of choosing work outs you love. Believe it or not, I wake up most days with a list of excuses running through my mind as to why I could skip my work out. Still. I was telling Steve last night that I think I am actually kind of a lazy person. That sucks. I wish I was the kind of person who got things done with a big smile on my face while singing a Happy Little Working Song.

I wonder how many songs I can fit into one post 😉

But anyway, it really can be a challenge for me to get my butt out the door, and I know that if I was trying to get to the gym to sit on the rowing machine for an hour, the excuses would win. I hate the rowing machine. Hate. But I love running. And I love spinning. And I love Zumba. And I love bodyworks. I feel like sometimes people get too caught up in there being a “right” or a “wrong” way to work out. Or people have said to me in the past that my work outs “count” more or are “better” and I have caught myself thinking the same thing as I read other blogs.

The only right way to work out is the way that is right for you.

You don’t have to figure it out right away. Try different things until something sticks. And honestly, isn’t that true of all things in life?

End of the Year


Well this super busy week is starting to come to a close. Not that this weekend is really any less busy, but it’s that time of year when all of my projects are finishing up. Some of them I will be very sad to see close (I really love my Fiddler and Bravo kiddos!) and to be honest, others will be a huge relief. After next week, I will get some much needed time off! Not that I don’t love what I’m doing, but every once in a while a break from even the things we enjoy doing, isn’t such a bad thing :)

This week, the only things I’ve been able to get done outside of work are a couple (yes TWO!) awesome spin classes

A successful and much needed grocery shopping trip, where I finally caved and bought this:

The thing is, it's just so good. If you have the self control not to eat it all from the jar in one sitting, then you should just buy it and experience the deliciousness.

And a hike with Nicole. Oh, and lots of cookie eating, but that’s for an other post 😉

Tonight is opening night! Come see Fiddler!!! I am a proud, proud director this evening.