fall

Fall Running Recap + December Goals

Fun story: this post was originally titled “October Running Goals”…and then I wrote 2 sentences and it sat in my drafts for a month. And then I pulled it out in early November, changed the title to November Running Goals, added a couple sentences, then…wrote a post about the election instead.

Despite my attempts, blogging has been difficult to commit to lately. But now that it’s Thanksgiving break and I have plenty of other work-related things I should be catching up on, it seems like no better time to procrastinate my real work and write a blog post!

Is it just me, or is summer just a no-go season for running? Every year for the past three years, I’ve trained for half marathons that happen in the spring and then I promptly stop running more than once a week for at least 3-4 months after that. Continue reading

Beat the Blerch10K Recap

Beat The Blerch 10K Race Recap

Has it already been 2 weeks since I updated?! This month has been flying by. I remember back in, like, September planning out  the next couple of months and thinking, “Oh man, November is going to be busy…race weekend, bachelorette, Thanksgiving, wedding…” And then I blinked my eyes and I’m already prepping my liver self for some wine tasting this weekend for a college friend’s bachelorette 😉 (Hi Desene!)

Which means…race weekend has already come and gone! I’ll get into details from my race, which are really kinda fun because it was a much different race than any I’ve ever ran before. But first I wanted to check in on October’s running goals – which I mainly set to keep myself on track for my 10K! Continue reading

Run Now, Wine Later

October Running Goals

Hello blog world! Long time no talk.

I think it is the lamest thing ever to lead into a blog post by talking about the weather, but here I go: Can I just complain for a moment that we are nearly halfway through October, and yet this is the weather forecast for the next 10 days?!

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It’s only a slight consolation that we’re getting below 60* at night. This time 2 months ago, it was 100* during the day and 75-80* at night, so I guess I can’t complain. But I want to start picking pumpkins and doing fun fall things!!! And my vision for said activities involves crisp fall air, a flannel shirt, jeans and boots…not sweating in an apple orchard in the 85 degree sun wearing a tank top, shorts, and flip flops 😉 Oh well. We will get there eventually!

Anyway…A little over a month ago, I posted my September Running Goals, keeping in mind that my eventual goal is to run a 10K in November and a half marathon in March. I’ve always said that putting your goals on the internet makes you more wayyy more likely to actually stick with them, and this was definitely the case for me last month!

Though I haven’t put them in writing until now, I also have some October goals in mind that I have been working toward this month. And I’ve gotta stick with them, because registration re-opened and I was able to snag a spot in the Beat the Blerch 10K on November 14th! Continue reading

Run Now, Wine Later

Fitness Friday: September Running Goals

Happy Friday! For the past couple of months, I’ve been trying to get into a more regular running routine. After my last half marathon the first week of May, it took me a little over a month to start running again, and I’ve been slowly getting back into it since mid-June. After a month or two of consistently running twice a week (with bootcamp, weight lifting, and a little 18 mile hike mixed in), I’m starting to feel more confident about my endurance and pace, and I’ve decided I’m finally in a good place to set myself some running goals!

After my last half, I decided no more long distance runs this year. That’s for several reasons, but mostly because of all the aches and pains I was experiencing. I ran 3 half marathons in 14 months! Doin’ too much, Katie…However, I would love to run the Shamrock’n Half again in March 2016, and instead of starting my training from practically nothing in December or January, I want to start to build my distance and endurance now. It is literally a marathon, not a sprint 😉

So, I have two long term goals… Continue reading

Treat Yourself Tuesday: Running Edition

It’s time to TREAT YO SELVES, friends!

Treat-Yourself-Tuesday-BadgeEvery Tuesday, my dear friend Becky over at Olives n’ Wine hosts a linkup encouraging bloggers to share in what ways – big or small – they have treated themselves over the past week. I love this idea and think everyone should find at least one way to treat themselves each week!

As I’ve mentioned before, my favorite way to reward myself after a race is by going and getting a pedicure. What’s better than getting a leg massage after running 6.2 miles… amirite?

Well, since I had to go straight to my parents’ house and help start Thanksgiving dinner after my 10K on Turkey Day, I finally found some time to treat myself to a post-race pedi on Friday.

IMG_2553It was much needed, especially with how much I’ve been running lately! I am in desperate need of a new pair of running shoes (hint hint, Christmas present idea!) and my feet have been pretty wrecked.

Some other ways I’ve been treating myself:

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I participated in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap this year and have been SO impressed by all 3 boxes of cookies I received! My measly cookies seemed so lame in comparison…no worries, I have drowned my cookie-lameness sorrows by eating, um, pretty much every single cookie that I’ve been sent. That’s 36 cookies in about a month. No wonder I’ve gained like 7 pounds…

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I also treated myself to one of my favorite Friday night rituals- a cozy night in with some wine, cheese, crackers and my iPad! I watched NBC’s The Sound of Music Live with Carrie Underwood. Har har. I know people really ragged on Carrie’s performance, but… terrible acting aside, I think she’s amazing. Lovable, beautiful, great voice, great legs (lol 😉 )… And I will never turn down an opportunity to watch The Sound of Music and sing along!

Now…I do love cookies, and it’s no secret I love wine. But I’ve definitely felt like I’ve been overindulging at times lately. What good is it running 3x per week (with the occasional living room ‘weight lifting’ workout) if it just gets canceled out each weekend? I don’t think that’s the best way to treat your body. Especially if you claim to be a healthy living blogger.

In the past year or so, there has definitely been a shift in my blog away from recipes and more toward a log of my workouts and running. Of course, I do still post recipes from time to time (Gorgonzola Turkey Burgers, anyone??) but, as my mom has pointed out several times, “All you talk about is running these days!”

I like to use this blog to keep myself accountable for fitness goals. Because if I announce on the Internet that I’m going to run a 5K this year, and that I’m going to run 25 miles in a month…that means I have to do it, right?

Welp…today is one of those days.

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YEAH. THAT HAPPENED.

I had been on the fence about this decision since my Thanksgiving 10k, but what really did it was attending the California International Marathon this weekend:

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I went for a jog along the last mile or two of the race, and it was extremely inspiring to see all the different kinds of people – different sizes, shapes, age groups – finishing the marathon! It was 20-35 degrees for most of the race as well, which made it all the more impressive. I even saw a 74 year old man finish in less than 4 hours and 30 minutes. Right after that, I texted all my friends who I had told I was thinking about signing up for the half:

textSidenote: I overslept on Sunday morning, so I didn’t get to see her fiancé cross the finish line, but I was super excited to FINALLY meet Erica from Coffee & Quinoa this weekend and celebrate Nate’s 6th marathon with the two of them!

Anyway, I am very excited, but also nervous, to be undergoing this challenge. I am luckily in the best running shape I’ve ever been in, which puts me in a good spot as far as training goes. I think creating a safe training plan is key in treating my body right and making sure it doesn’t rebel against me throughout this process!

I made myself a training plan based on Hal Higdon’s Novice 2 Half Marathon training plan. Instead of running 4x per week and doing cross training on Sunday, I will be running 3x per week, doing upper body weight lifting once, and my “cross training” on Sundays will consist of dodgeball 😉 I also was a little leery of increasing my long run by a whole mile every weekend, so I am only increasing by .75 miles most weeks. However, depending on whether I actually do a 5k and 10k race along the way, I may change that.

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I actually am already on week 2 of the plan, so I’m 1 week ahead of schedule. This extra week is to allow myself at least 1 week to get sick at some point this winter…it’s inevitable! I also gave myself the week of President’s Day weekend off, because I might be traveling at some point that weekend :)

So that’s my big news! I hope you all stick with me to follow along while I train for this race. In March 2013, I ran my first 5K…and in March 2014, I am now signed up to run my first Half Marathon. What a difference a year makes. I am scared, and I actually think there might be a screw loose in my head for wanting to do this to my body…but it’s on the Internet now, so there’s no turning back!!!

How have you been treating yourself this holiday season?

HALF MARATHONERS: Tips and training advice please!!

Fitness Friday: Pile on the Miles Results!

A little over a month ago, I announced that I was participating in the Pile on the Miles challenge this November:

Not one to set goals for myself and never actually follow through and see if I achieved them….Here I am to report back on how I did!

The challenge was to walk or run more during the month of November, with a goal to pile on extra miles, not pounds, during this food filled time of year.

While I did pile on some pounds last month, lol, I think I definitely achieved my goal of walking AND running more. My goal for the month of November was to log at least 100 miles total on my Fitbit, and to run 40 miles. A big improvement on my New Years resolution to run 25 miles in a month, eh? I’m still kind of in awe at the improvements I’ve made in my running this year, even despite my month in a cast over the summer.

Let’s see how I did:

POTMtotalmilesI get a weekly email from Fitbit letting me know my stats for the previous week and, upon looking at my emails from November, it’s pretty clear I crushed my overall goal…by 20 miles! I’m sure my increase in running helped.

I was pretty sure I would achieve this goal easily, but the running goal was a little more of a challenge…

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BARELY nailed it! I definitely found myself increasing my mileage toward the end of the month. I remember not wanting to run more than 3 or 3.5 on my last run before my race, but I calculated This was A) to be prepared for my 10K on the 28th and B) to make sure I’d reach 40 miles. And I did!

Since I no longer have access to the Fitness Center in the building I used to work in, I have been focusing a lot more on my running lately (and the occasional living room workout with hand weights!) – needless to say, I have kept up with the running since Thanksgiving, and I already have 15 miles logged in just the first week of December!

I don’t know how I’m going to keep up as Winter approaches… I have been bundling up for my 40 degree morning jogs (which REALLY isn’t that bad, I know), but luckily I usually have sun…until now. It’s slated to SNOW tonight! In California. What the heck?!

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This is my “I’m Makeupless and Frightened of Running in Cold Weather” face. You likey?

Have a great weekend and stay warm!

Runners: How many miles to you run each month?

How are you staying active during the holiday season?

Thanksgiving Weekend in Photos

Hello and I hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving weekend! Mine was really great, filled with friends, family & remembering how much I have to be thankful for…

  • My family’s health! {This time last year, we were mourning the loss of my grandpa…it’s nice to all be in good health this year}
  • Having the freedom to explore my dreams and establish my nascent young professional career {bahaha so cheesy, but true}
  • A great apartment and roommate!
  • All the friends I’ve made this year through dodgeball & Young Dems
  • A body {& spirit} resilient enough to come back from 2 broken bones to run 2 10Ks this year!

Alright that’s all the sappy stuff I’ll get into for now 😛 Et voila, Thursday through Sunday:

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Thanksgiving started out with the Run to Feed the Hungry 10k Run and 5K Run/Walk, a Sacramento tradition that benefits the Sacramento Food Bank that brought out 30,000+ Sacramentans this year! It was such an incredible experience, definitely my preferred race to date. The race was packed, which was great for energy/morale. East Sac residents also camped out on their lawns to cheer us on- some passed out water, others played live music, and I even spotted a few mimosa stations!!

I improved upon my old 10K time (1:02:27) by a whopping 6 and a half minutes. I don’t even know what happened – I pretty much sprinted my last 1.2 miles…my dad even got a picture of me grinning like an idiot when I spotted him in the homestretch:

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Who smiles like that after running 6 miles?!

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After that awesome experience, I was ready to EAT. We fed 13 people total, since most of my dad’s Bay Area family made the trek to my parents house for his 60th birthday! We had an awesome spread- my contribution this year was cranberry-pomegranate sauce and maple chipotle sweet potatoes. Both recipes were from Women’s Health and were both deelish!

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On Friday, I headed over to the mall to do some shopping since I knew I’d need some interview clothes this week. I did some damage, getting a blazer, interview dress, hooded exercise tee, blouse, crop top, boots and a sweater…for I’m guessing about $200 total? Not too shabby!

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On Friday night, I reunited with an old friend over drinks and darts – unfortunately, my Cricket skills didn’t hold up after this picture was taken -_-

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On Saturday, we had a party for my dad’s 60th and a few other milestones – this November marks the 25th anniversary of him starting his business, and the 20th anniversary of our family moving to Sacramento! Our good friends who just started a food truck – SLIGHTLY SKEWED – catered…they are so good! Check them out on Facebook, Sacramentans!

20131202-134237.jpgAfter meeting up with more old friends for another drink on Saturday night after the party, I felt the need to punish myself on Sunday morning…. with a 7 mile run?! I kept it slow and steady the whole time, but it was still pretty rough, ending in a blood blister. Maybe this means it’s time for new shoes??

Lots of fun stuff on the horizon for me this week, including a new {temporary} job and interviews! Send all your good vibes my way!

Did you do a Thanksgiving Day run?

Black Friday – Yay or Nay? I don’t usually partake, but I caved this year…

Weekend in Photos

Hello everyone and happy Thanksgiving week!

Sorry for the brief hiatus…suffice it to say, there have been a lot of changes in my life lately. Luckily for me, said changes have actually resulted in a huge weight being lifted off my shoulders. Thanksgiving is coming at a perfect time for me – I feel very fortunate for everything I have right now. And I’ve only got good things coming! How’s that for vague? 😉

We are hosting Thanksgiving this year because Thursday is my dad’s 60th birthday! My mom and I are cooking Thanksgiving dinner for {almost} my dad’s whole side of the family. That’s 14 people… BRING IT! I’m so excited to cook for and be with the family on Thursday! Not to mention I’m doing Run To Feed the Hungry (my second 10K) that morning. Am I overachieving? Maybe… 😉

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On to the weekend! It started early for me when I went to Jamie’s Broadway Grille for lunch on Friday with Dave. I had never even heard of this neighborhood gem, which has been on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. We had amaaaaazing French Onion Soup (See above, the photo doesn’t do it justice! It was SOOOO good!) and split a steak sandwich, which was cooked perfectly. I would definitely recommend this to anyone wanting to check out a classic Sacramento spot!

Jamie's Broadway Grille on Urbanspoon

That evening, I watched Catching Fire with Yvette, Lisa & Kristin. No pictures of that…because we were so ENTHRALLED by the movie! It was seriously good! I read all three books and don’t remember being as satisfied and impressed with the first movie. I thought it was excellent all around. Definitely recommend!

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After the movie, we met up with friends to grab drinks. At one point Yvette and I were super awkward and decided to hide beneath our jackets/scarves to avoid being seen by people we knew. Haha. Is anyone else there really weird about running into people they know in public? No? Just me? Ok.

The night ended with the most glorious piece of pizza from Luigi’s. Just look at how adoringly I’m gazing at that thing. Glad Kristin insisted on pizza, because it soaked up the IPA’s I drank and allowed me to wake up the next morning feeling well enough to….

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…run 6 miles! Who am I?! I wanted to get one last really long run in before my 10K on Thursday, and that I did. I have been switching it up lately with my route and running to McKinley Park (~1.5 miles away) instead of Capitol Park (.5 miles away), which has forced me to increase my distance. I’m feeling great going into my 10K, and really hoping I can break 1:00:00!

I’m also only 9.8 miles away from my 40 mile running goal this month, so with a 4 mile run tomorrow and my race, I’ll achieve that goal!

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On Saturday night I stayed in and cuddled up with Love Actually and a cup of tea. It was a much needed relaxation night…just to be met with an epic brunch at Limelight on Sunday morning! You can’t beat $7 bottomless mimosas… Especially when you and your 4 friends are apparently thirsty enough to require the server to just leave the carafe at your table 😉

Also, can I just point out that I finished that entire plate of food? Both habanero-chicken sausages, both eggs, both pieces of toast, and all the potatoes. I pretty much wiped it all clean with the toast. I must have still been hungry after my long run the morning before?! I felt like a bottomless pit!

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The weekend ended with a dodgeball tie (waaah!) and more TV on my iPad. Consider this picture this week’s installment of “reasons why you should be glad you’re not my friend on Snapchat”….

Enjoy your Monday!

What are you contributing to Thanksgiving dinner?

Are you running a Thanksgiving/Turkey Trot race?

Weekend in Photos

Good afternoon, blog land!

I am currently coming to you in between coffee jitters. For some reason I’ve been craving hot (and iced) coffee lately, even though it gives me stomachaches and makes me tweak out. I generally drink tea, but I love the taste of coffee. I also just love having a hot drink with me in the morning…it was 45 degrees outside when I woke up this morning! So I had 2 cups of coffee and have switched to decaf so I don’t completely crash before lunchtime 😉

On to the weekend!

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I took a short (not even half) day at work on Friday and started it off right – got a pumpkin latte from Peets (actually probably better than S*bucks if you ask me!), bought a pumpkin, and since they don’t have pumpkin kombucha I settled for the also very fall-like cranberry flavor. It wasn’t my favorite, but it’s good to add another flavor into my not-very-expansive kombucha repertoire.

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I took the short day at work because my dad and I decided to go to the Bay Area to hang out with my grandma, as it was the 1st anniversary of my Papa’s death. Some of you may remember my Papa passing suddenly last year (see that post here) and that my dad and I went to be with family that day. I baked pumpkin bread for everyone who was mourning with us that day, and decided to keep up the tradition this year, roasting up the pumpkin I bought that morning and making it into pumpkin bread (it totally stuck in the pan, so Grandma and I went at it with a fork! 😀 )

I also made us a simple little ravioli & tomato sauce dinner. I had a great time catching up with my grandma, and especially enjoyed our obligatory Happy Hour where we talked about life and boys while watching her favorite Westerns on TV :-)

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My dad and I made it back that evening, so I called it an early night. I woke up well-rested, knowing I wanted to run at least 5.5 miles…after 3, I was feeling fantastic and decided to go for it- I ran another 10k! I also beat my race time by a whopping 3 minutes — I attribute this to the fact that I a) have been keeping up with my long runs and b) ran on my regular completely flat running path. Afterwards, I went to the Farmer’s Market for and picked up just a couple of things. (Flowers, brussels sprouts, greens, and my favorite salsa)

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After my run, I refueled by making a smoothie with my new NINJA ULTIMA BLENDER!!! Thanks to Becky, who tagged me in an Instagram contest at the Healthy Living Summit, I won this beaut! It created probably one of the smoothest smoothies I’ve ever made, and the single serve cups are awesome. I loaded it up with frozen bananas, plain greek yogurt, a spoonful of peanut butter, chocolate protein powder, and some almond milk.

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Not so smooth…. was my phone falling out of my pocket while biking on Saturday night. No insurance + no AppleCare = looks like Katie’s gonna be payin at least $140 to get it fixed! Anyone have an old AT&T iPhone they don’t need? 😉

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After less than 5 hours of sleep, I woke up bright and early on Sunday morning (7:30am!) stressed out about life and my phone and couldn’t get back to sleep. So I did the only thing I was sure would make me feel better – went to the gym and watched Food Network! I was the only one at the gym at 9:30am on Sunday morning…. quelle surprise 😉

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I had a few hours to kill before our first Sunday dodgeball game of the season, so I did some food prep! Not much, but it is enough to keep me eating clean for at least a few days. I thawed a chicken breast, made roasted tomato salsa (also with my new Ninja!), chopped up veggies for stir frying throughout the week (um, shredding brussels sprouts with a mandolin is amazing!), and made a pot of brown rice. Easy peasy!

I’m pretty proud of myself for exercising a fair amount of moderation and working out both days this weekend, especially after the debauchery of last weekend. To be honest, I’ve been dealing with a lot of stress at work and in some aspects of my personal life, so it’s nice to know that there’s something I can control that makes me feel good!

What’s your favorite smoothie combo?

Any advice on the shattered iPhone screen?

Did you food prep this week?

Fitness Friday – New Years Resolution Check In!

Hey all! First of all, thank you so much for all your lovely comments on my Treat Yourself birthday post. It’s reassuring to hear that so many of you are going through the same quarter life crisis ~struggle~…we’re all in this together, right?

Today I’m here to check in on some of my Fitness Goals for the year. They were pretty much my version of New Years Resolutions this year…I haven’t checked in on my progress since March, but I am actually pretty happy with how much I’ve accomplished exactly 6 months later!

Fitness Goals
  • Run a 5K race
  • Start weight training again (and eat more protein!)
  • Be able to do a 2 minute plank and 2 minute leg lifts
  • Run 25 miles in a month (several times if possible)

Let’s see how I’m doing….

  • Run a 5K race

I’ll see your 5K race…and raise you a 10K!

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Earlier this month, I ran the Run to Remember 10K in 1:02:27. I’ve been consistently keeping up with my long distance runs on the weekends, running 4-5 miles every week since! I also ran a 5K in March in 28:54. Fun fact: I ran 5K for speed on Wednesday and accomplished a new PR- I improved my time to 27:11! That’s faster than 9 minutes per mile! I’m looking forward to running more 5Ks and 10Ks to improve my speed.

  • Start weight training again (and eat more protein!)

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My gym FINALLY reopened on Monday! They moved all the equipment into a much larger and more spacious suite in the building.

I was actually pretty consistently doing upper body and ab/core workouts from Women’s Health and GPP Fitness before I broke my thumb in July. I obviously then had to take a break from lifting…but I have gotten back into it since I got my cast off a month ago! I’m still pretty frustrated at how little I can lift (5 pound dumbbells are too light, but 10 pounds too heavy), but I am trying!

baby musclesMy muscles really aren’t that big…. I feel like there’s some shadows helping me out here haha.

As for protein…this is always an area I could improve in, since I don’t buy chicken and turkey too often. I have started incorporating a lot more cheese into my diet for calcium’s sake, so I’m hoping that’s helping with the protein too!

  • Be able to do a 2 minute plank and 2 minute leg lifts

I don’t do leg lifts anymore, haha…But I have gotten pretty close to a 2 minute plank. I think my longest is about 1:45! I’ll get there!

My new favorite ab exercise is definitely V-ups. I can tell my form is improving every time I do them, and I love that they get your lower abs too! I try to incorporate planks and V-ups into every workout, including runs.

  • Run 25 miles in a month (several times if possible)

FINALLY accomplished!!! I ran 24.75 miles in August.. SO close! But I wanted to accomplish this goal for real!

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Hard to see, but I’ve run 32.19 miles so far this month.

With at least 1 more run on the horizon, I seriously knocked this goal out of the park this month. I’ve ran more in September than any other month since 2011. The crazy thing is, I accomplished it even though I usually only run twice per week! There have been a couple of months where I exceeded 25 miles, but I was also running 3x per week.

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Next month, I’ll also be able to track how many miles I’ve traveled- I got a Fitbit Zip for my birthday! (Thanks Mom and Dad!) Side note…me from 3 years ago would totally look at this picture in disgust that my booty has disappeared. #thanksalotRUNNING

So all in all, I am very happy with my progress this year! Can’t wait to see what the next 3 months hold…Time to start thinking about new goals I’ll make for myself next year!

Do you make New Years Resolutions, or do you have any fitness goals at the moment?

How do you get your protein?

Do you have a pedometer? How many steps per day do you average? My highest so far is 10,010 steps! Hard to get very many when you work an office job…