Friday, April 29, 2011

Royally Awesome

Ran 3.5 miles in 30:57. Then did a bunch of leg exercises, including my new diagonal lunges of walking doom. Seriously, the day after I do them, I can't really walk. I waddle. It's hot. It brings all the boys to my yard.

So I know there's like this royal wedding of a lifetime thing going on, and honestly, I'm happy for Kate and William! But that doesn't mean I've watched a single minute of it. I would like to, but if I never get around to it, I've already been bombarded with images from it (thanks Facebook!) and probably get the general idea of what went on. Those weddings, guys, so different every time...

Ya know what is royally awesome? This week!

On Tuesday evening, I used my $25 Marshall's gift card and bought myself some new workout gear. Who needs a fancy hat for the KY Derby party I'm throwing in a week?! Not this girl!
My goodies, but not Ciara's version of "goodies"
I'm not kidding, you guys, I am in LOVE with these clothes! It might be that these are the fanciest summer running clothes I've bought so far. I love my Target singlets and sports bras, but it was time to try something new. The shirt is made by Athletic Essentials and the bra is by Marika. I needed another workout tank and this one is amazing! It's super stretchy and soft and it didn't show ANY sweat! I am a profuse to the nth degree sweater (not the kind you can wear!) and there was zero dark blue sweat marks. Color me amazed!

The sports bra was just as amazing, if not more! I've only used Target's C9 sports bras and loved them. But after 3 years of running, my girls need some more lovin'. This was the only brand at Marshall's I could find that was for high-impact exercise. I tried it on and fell in love. The sides have 3 sets of adjustments to take in or loosen up the band around your ribs. The cups were supportive and they have inserts (who doesn't like a little extra boost?!) you can remove. It's really cute and something I will have no shame in wearing without a shirt on in the summer when it's 90* on my long runs.

Jen approved! Flash added for extra fun!
Another awesome thing about this week? I won a $400 scholarship at my school! Talk about book money! My school had an awards ceremony, complete with chocolate chip cookies and punch. The ceremony was short and sweet, which was great because it was 7:30 PM and my tummy was an angry, grumbly bear!
It was apparently supposed to be semi-formal dress and I really, really didn't want to wear a dress or skirt (hadn't shaved my legs in 2 days...hawt). But my mom forced me to look cute-ish. I gave up on my hair since it had been in a messy bun all day and was all sorts of kinked. I also hadn't taken a shower in over 24 hours, so I sprayed on a ton of body spray to mask any sort of stank I had. Obviously, I care about my image a lot.

April has been very good to me in all sorts of aspects and I'm sad to see it go. Hopefully May brings us all bigger and even better things to be happy about!

What's your favorite kind of sports bra? How has April blessed you this past month?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Heavenly Smoothie, DOMS, and Celiac

Ok guys, I just made one of the best tasting smoothies ever!
Heavenly goodness!
I used my usual base of orange juice and vanilla Carnation Instant Breakfast powder. I think there was about 1.5 cups of OJ. Then I added in about 5 frozen whole strawberries, 7-8 slices of frozen peaches, and 1 whole banana. Blend it up and drink! It was soooo good, you guys! I love peaches because it means summer is on it's way (ignore the fact I used frozen peaches, not ripe ones)!

I haven't done any running or working out yet today. My legs are very sore from the diagonal lunges I did yesterday and I haven't gotten around to stretching them out yet. I'm also on the slow boat of waking up this morning (afternoon?!). I got up at 9 and I'm still sluggish! I think I just haven't gotten enough sleep this whole spring break and it's wearing me out. So much for a vacay since school starts back up tomorrow! I'm going to try to run later today when I gather some more energy. I'm one of those people who does better in the middle to end of the day, rather than the morning.

Mama Running Ninja Girl is conducting an experiment on herself to see if she's allergic to gluten. So far, we're fairly certain she is. Ever since she had her appendix removed back in 2007, her stomach and intestines just haven't been the same. Her tummy is always upset, and while there are other things she's allergic to like tomatoes and chocolate (I would DIE!) and avoids, she still has GI issues. When Cousin visited, Mama RNG decided to try going gluten-free and she's been feeling soo much better! She did have one cupcake 2 days into her gluten fast and her stomach got sick almost immediately!

Now, we're going to start getting rid of the gluten-laden products in our house. While I'm not allergic to gluten, I see nothing wrong in eating less of it and supporting my mom. Plus, since I know more about what products are gluten-free or the alternatives she has, I get to help her adjust to her new diet. It will definitely be an adventure because she's not thrilled this is happening and sometimes forgets what her trigger foods are (she'll knowingly eat some of my chocolate chip cookies and then gets upset when her tummy feels bad later!). I'll keep you guys posted and I'll try to post some of the recipes we try. If anyone has any tips for Mama RNG and being gluten-free, please comment below! We'd love to hear from you!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Music Monday

Monday: Ran 3.1 miles in 27:23. Followed by this WORKOUT. Had to drop the reps for the core board pushups and planks to 8, rather than 10, or I would've died.

Because I know you all just want the music video, I'm going to force you to read this post before you get to the video. Or you'll just scroll to the end. Whatevs. Read this!

Yesterday, I made these cookies for today's hangout sesh with Erin. The recipe is so easy and the cookies came out very well!
Batter of yumminess!
The chocolate chips stayed gooey for hours! It was crazy awesome!
Get in my belly!
 My grandparents came over for a small Easter dinner. The madre y yo made lemon pepper mahi mahi, steamed asparagus, and wild rice pilaf. Delish!
Among other news, I briefly mentioned that I'm trying this whole online dating thing. We can discuss the why part of this later, since I have to go hang with Erin now, but suffice it to say, I am a baller. I have a coffee date set up for Thursday. I'm pretty freaking excited!

Ok, now you lovelys get your music video. Enjoy this awesomesauce song! I can't stop singing it!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Seasonal Spheres Day!

Saturday: Ran 3.4 miles in 28:48. No calf ache but my whole body was tired and it was really hard to get through the run

Apparently, someone was displeased with calling today "Easter" and now the P.C. thing is to call it "Seasonal Spheres Day". Yeah...whatever. If you don't believe that Jesus rose today, then just call today April 24th. I don't understand the issue here.

On Thursday, my friend Sarah and I went over to my Grandma's to dye Easter eggs with Cousin.
Sarah, me, and Cousin
Eye dying pros!
Our bounty. That blue egg says "Special". I poked a hole in it as I was writing the L. It really was a special egg.
Sarah and I discovered that we both do this weird hand movement thing on our hip bones when we're bored. A video would've explained this better. But just go with the fact that we're weird and awkward.
Grandma made us cupcakes with marshmallow bunnies on top!
On Friday night, Bestie was in town. We went out to dinner at 33rd Street Bistro in East Sac and had a yummy dinner of spicy chicken lettuce wraps and salad. I should've taken pictures but we were having too much fun gossiping and gabbing. Afterwards, we went to a dive bar to meet with a guy I met online (yes, I have entered the world of online dating). It was a pretty fun time overall.

Saturday, my grandma had Easter lunch/dinner at her house because no one could make it for Easter dinner on the actual day of Easter. We also celebrated my aunt's birthday and my baby cousin Wesley's birthday.
Birthday flower was a Siamese twin! You can see the two heads of the flower attached together.
My technologically advanced cousins playing on their iPad. I wanna be that cool!
A glass of Martinelli's sparkling cider with the perfect sentiment for the day.
Between dinner and dessert, my grandma whipped out her Bingo set. We played 5 games. Grandma won twice. It had to have been rigged!
My grandma doesn't mess around. We have a legit number spinner!
So close to winning, but I only won the very last game!
Baby cousin Wesley wearing his Tim Lincecum Giant's shirt. Get them started early!
Cousin Love!
I hope everyone has a great Easter day, spending time with your family and friends!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Balance and Personal Training

Wednesday: Ran 5.3 miles in 44:07. Ran an extra 2 miles with friends for roughly 20 mins. Total=7.3 miles
Thursday: Personal training for 1 hour.
Friday: Ran 3.4 miles in 27:48.

Life is all about balance. The balance between work and play, exercising and resting, eating good food and not getting fat, doing what you have to do and doing what you want to do, helping others and being selfish, etc, etc. This concept is becoming more and more clear to me as I get older. This may or may not have something to do with that whole frontal lobe maturation by age 25 thing. As I read/stalk everyone's blogs, I'm constantly learning new things from everyone and this makes me think about my own opinions and ideas about running and my diet.

Balance is key. Too much of one thing and everything else gets out of whack. The most blatant example is with food. Nowadays, "everyone" gorges on fast food, fatty food, food that's just plain bad for them. Many people I know who eat bad foods don't have energy, aren't happy, and complain about being fat. Besides exercising, one's diet is the biggest thing one can control! I know for myself that if I have even one day of eating poorly, I feel bloated, depressed, and lethargic. Basically, I feel like crap. My body is used to eating healthy foods (except for my daily chocolate doses) and so when I don't eat well, I can drastically feel the difference.
Healthy, yummy Greek yogurt!
This leads me to my first personal training session I had yesterday at 24 Hour Fitness. Before I get to the actual supa-dupa-fly workout she gave me, I want to talk about something she said that really struck a chord with me. I had mentioned my issues with shin splints (see HERE) and my injury (see HERE), so Karissa (the cutest trainer ever!) talked to me about how to strengthen my feet. She said that no matter how much I build up my calves, that if I don't have strong feet, I won't be stable and nothing will work. Our whole workout was based on making me more stable (at least we weren't talking about mentally stable!) and having my muscles communicate with each other, rather than just doing isolating exercises like bicep curls. When everything talks to each other, they all get along (um...hello metaphor for life!).

For me, I've always known that you need strong hips to have strong knees to have strong feet. But I never thought about it going the other direction, that you need to have strong feet to have strong knees to have strong hips. If one part of the puzzle is missing, the whole system fails. I think this has been what I've been dealing with. I've just focused on having strong legs and forgot that my feet, my sole means of transportation, need some lovin' too! Lately, I've been pondering barefoot running and while I'm not ready to hop on board that crazy train quite yet, I completely agree with the idea that shoes have ruined our feet. I've decided that unless I'm wearing sneakers for running or school or what have you, I'm going to try to wear minimal shoes. This works well since summer is coming up. No more stupid flip flops that cause plantar fascitis pain. I don't care how dorky I look, my feet are vital to my running and I need to take care of them.

Ok, onto the workout she gave me. She really wanted to focus on doing workouts that would improve my running fitness, not just muscle strength, which I thought was the bomb diggity! Anything to help me improve my running I'm totally down for!

So here's what we did in circuits:
3 sets
  • diagonal lunges with knee cross-->15x/leg
  • single leg shoulder press with knee up-->8x/leg with 10 lb dumbbells
  • crunches with tricep extension-->15x with 5 lb dumbbells
3 sets
  • Free Motion cable machine (with machine arm down) deadlift and row, single leg and single arm-->12x/arm with 15 lbs
  • Core Board pushups w/rotation in each direction-->10x
  • high plank, diagonal knee to elbow-->10x/leg
And then I died. Never have I ever wanted to cry so much during a workout! The pushups straight to the planks KILLED me! I had to take breaks like every 4 reps. I can hardly lift my arms today and my lats are letting me know how much they didn't appreciate that workout. But I know it's good for me and I will get stronger every time I do it!

How do you keep balance in your life? What are the struggles you face to keep that balance from deteriorating?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Music Wednesday?!

I just realized I never gave you guys a song for Music Mondays! This was because I was out of town and all, but you still should have a kickass song for the week! This song is one of my favorites right now. It totally captures every ounce of happiness and bliss I am feeling. And how could you not jump around dancing while listening to this?! A-freaking-mazing!

New Things

Hi lovelys :) As you can tell from the blast of purple hitting your eyes right now, I changed the design of my blog. My goal was to make it look a little classier and easier to read than before. I'm very big on the artistic appeal and aesthetics of things. Switching up the color scheme and background seemed a perfect idea. Many bloggers use a plain white background and add color through the text or their header, but I still wanted to keep color in the background. Hopefully the purple isn't an eyesore. If you experience seizures and/or lapses of consciousness from the purple background, please inform me :)

Secondly, I have my very first personal training session tomorrow, which I am super excited about! I won a free personal training session for having been a member of 24 Hour Fitness for 6 months. Heck yeah fitness! I'm looking forward to getting new arm exercises to add to my repertoire and maybe learn some new ways to strengthen my lame calves.

Thirdly, I'll be going for a 5 miler later today, followed by a walk/jog around a local park with some friends because one of them wants to start yyyyogging like us cool kids. I figured it'd be a nice cool down after my long run since I don't think we'll be running Kara Goucher fast (love that woman!).

Fourthly, Cousin and I made cookies last night. Cousin is allergic to gluten and dairy, so it really put a cramp in our cooking style. Luckily, there are other people out there with her same food issues who invented weird things like egg replacer and dairy-free/gluten-free cookie mix.
Cousin and I had tons of wonderful girl talk while making the cookies. She's in her freshman year of college so it was fun to talk about school and boys, mostly about boys and how dumb they can be :D
Cookie dough ready to be baked!
Cookies done!
The recipe turned out pretty well. The cookie dough never spread out in the oven and stayed exactly how we had plopped them down on the sheet. The cookies were pretty bready. Cousin said they tasted like chocolate chip bread, which, although I've never had that, I agree.
Yes, I normally look like that weird when surrounded by cookies. Cookie Monster wasn't my favorite Muppet for nothing!
Hope everyone has a fabulous Wednesday! And yes, I'm still floating on cloud 9 after yesterday :D

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Pissing My Pants With Excitement!

Ok, people, the title might be a bit crude and I apologize if it offends anyone, but seriously, I really might pee myself! I just got back from talking with the intern coordinator at UC Davis' Veterinary Medicine Teaching Hospital and found out I'm going to be their newest equine vet tech intern!!! And because I have so much horse experience, I get to work in the ICU and Surgery units!!! AAAAHHHHHH SO EXCITED!!!

Phew! Ok, now we can move on to the Wild Horse Sanctuary that I visited this past weekend. I know you all are dying to see horsey pictures and, trust me, I've got tons!

Sunday morning, my friend Melissa picked me up from my house with her friend Erin and Erin's boyfriend, Jay.
I brought waaaay too much for a 24 hr trip, but you never know when you'll need your Carhartt jacket!
We drove all the way from Sacramento to Shingletown, CA, which is about 45 mins southeast of Redding. It was a long drive, but worth it. The preserve is kind of out in the middle of nowhere.
A field of yearlings and a donkey greeted us.
We met with the owners and Melissa and Erin caught up with them. They had interned at the sanctuary in 2005 and have consistently come back to visit. Melissa invited me this time so that during the summer and fall, we could come back and help out. We went for a walk around the property since there wasn't much for us to do once we got there.
Mustangs near the buildings
The riding horses
This buckskin had the coolest iridescent eyes!
Me and Yohanka (aka Yolanda) the burro. I want to keep her forever and ever!
Burro herd with baby!
While we were walking around, it started raining on us, which began the never-ending downpour for the rest of our trip.
This mustang had an itch
It's perfectly normal for wild mustangs to sleep on straw...riiiiiight...
Melissa and Erin remembered that there was a horse burial area with a bunch of skeletons and so we went on a wild goose hunt to find them. Except we never did. We did find a creek, though.

When we got back from our trek, we went into the main house and talked to Ted, one of the owners of the sanctuary. He took us on a tour of the the property, which included the rabbit hutch.
Baby bunny!
Behind the house, they have a pond, which would be the perfect place for a country wedding.
Ted and Dianne offered us dinner so we ate with them and sat and talked for a while. We eventually went back to the intern house, where we played a card game I had never heard of, 9 Square. It was pretty fun and Melissa and Erin got to grill the interns about what had been going on since they had last been there.

The next morning, we all got up and had one of the worst breakfasts ever. Mine consisted of an apple, PB from the jar, and 5 oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Super healthy, I know. We were supposed to help feed the mustangs but the vet had come out since one old mustang wasn't doing well and needed to be put down. Eventually, we got to go out and feed. It was really "fun" feeding in the rain...with hay...blowing all over you. Awesome. But we did get to ride on top of the hay on the front of the tractor, so that was fun!
Melissa getting a bale of hay ready for the riding horses
Feeding one of the mustang stallions, while being lifted at least 10 feet above his pen! Yikes!
When we were done feeding, we watched the interns separate a gelding (castrated boy horse) from a group of mares (female horses). He was a beauty and I was in love!
I'm always a sucker for the big blazes (white facial stripe)!
One of the guys needed to put a halter on a separated mare and put her in with the other mares so that the next day they could all get ovarectomies (get their ovaries removed). This is important in controlling herd size. Melissa looked like the previous handler of the mare, so she got to go in and calm the mare down so the halter could be put on.
She loved working in the only muddy pen. A little straw please?!
After that was all done, we contemplated going for a ride, but the rain kept coming and none of us really wanted to ride in the rain, except Jay since he's not a horse person. Trust me, there's just about nothing worse than being out in the the pouring rain, getting sopping wet while riding. It sucks! So we decided to pack up and leave, since it was already getting late in the day.
Two of the intern house kittens. Adorable!
Before we left, we watched a mare and foal (baby horse) out in the field nursing and playing. It made me miss working in Kentucky with the foals in my barn!
After a long drive, lots of licorice eaten, and 2 phone Scrabble games played, we returned to Sacramento. It was a ton of fun, even with the rain, and I can't wait to go again and really see the mustangs :)

How was your weekend? Have you ever worked with or ridden horses?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

I'm Leaving Todaaaaaay

You're supposed to be humming along with me as you read the title because I am sure my title of the blog just looks lame unless you're actually singing the Christina Aguilera song "Cruz" with me.

Anyway, I'm off on a mini vacation with my friend from school, Melissa. We and her other 2 friends are going to a Mustang sanctuary up near Redding, CA for today and tomorrow. I'm so excited!

I will take plenty of pictures of the pretty ponies for you guys. I haven't ridden since October, so I'm going to be feeling it preeeeetty badly when I get home. Those adductors don't even stand a chance!

Ok, don't miss me too much! I'll be back tomorrow and will try to post unless I pass out from exhaustion when I get home!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Best Holiday of the Year!

Yesterday, I had a field trip to the UC Davis campus for one of my classes. I planned on going to the gym afterward, but forgot my sports bra in my gym bag. Sad panda! I ran around my neighborhood instead and did 3.4 miles in 28:15. The legs felt strong and good :) After the run, I made a pretty random meal of steamed broccoli, 2 hard boiled eggs, and a blueberry/raspberry bran muffin from Trader Joe's.
Yes, that's most definitely a Cookie Monster bowl from when I was 3.
I had to go with my grandma and mom to the airport to pick up my cousin since she's visiting for her spring break. Her flight was supposed to come in at 10:30 PM, but as most airlines go, it was late. I amused myself with taking pictures to pass the time.
SUPER fluffy and blurry Chow that pulled this lady's wheelchair. Talk about slave labor!
Me and my grandma
Ruby finally got off the plane and we managed to get home by 12 AM. I was a tired pup!

Ok, so onto to the BEST holiday of the year! UC Davis has an annual tradition of hosting Picnic Day, which is an open house for the public to come visit all of the departments, learn, interact, and have fun. It is also a big tradition for the students to drink copiously, which has caused a lot of problems in the past, but they cracked down a lot this year since last year was so bad that they threatened to shut down Picnic Day indefinitely! This year, I met up with some friends and we meandered around campus, enjoying the 80* sunny weather and good company.
Kristen, her friend, me, and Misty with our new tomato and pepper plants
Buzzy bees!
Yummy honey jelly beans from the Entomology department
Action Jackson, the jack at the horse barn
Me and Misty on a random couch tier. Gotta love my school!
We shucked our own corn cobs and got popcorn!
My tomato and pepper plants somehow survived the day unscathed!
Super dirty feet from walking around in flip flops all day. Not my best idea ever.
Now, it's time to sleep after a long day walking around in the sun.