Sunday, May 31, 2015

Bouldering and Bad News

This is a blog post that I really haven't been wanting to write! 

Last week, I headed to the gym along with my roommate Jason — typical weekday workout. There was one particular V3 that a group of us (who were all at similar ability levels) congregated around. One by one, we climbed on and tried to figure it out. Gradually, we got closer and closer to the top. Unfortunately, I happened to miscalculate a grab when I was at the top of that particular V3 and fell at an odd angle. The tip of my climbing shoe caught the seam on the mat and stopped, but my upper body kept twisting. 

My knee definitely didn't feel right, but I was somewhat optimistic because I hadn't heard any cracks or pops. I couldn't stand up immediately, so I crawled off the mat and sat there for a little bit until the pain subsided. I didn't do anything about it at that moment, but the pain ended up keeping me up all night, so I went to the doctor the next day.

The verdict? A torn meniscus. 

Tank: H&M [similar]
Pants: American Eagle [similar]
Shoes: Evolv [exact]
Chalk bag: Mammut [exact]

Now, I'm out of commission for at least a few weeks. But, that doesn't mean that I won't be posting on here!

Injuries are an unfortunate but normal part of being an active person. When I lived in Utah and skied several days a week, I frequently joked that it wasn't a matter of if I was going to get injured but a matter of when. You can take every precaution under the sun, but you can't control everything. Sometimes, bad things just happen.

So, I'm going to be sharing my journey through physical therapy and back to the wonderful world of running, rock climbing and other active pursuits. Right now, I'm on crutches for a few more days (and can I just say how terrible being on crutches is in a very walking-oriented city like San Francisco?!), but I'll be sharing the ups and downs (and inevitable frustrations) of PT just like I would my regular workouts.

Thanks for sticking around so far! I'm sure there's lots of fun, active stories yet to come :)

Thursday, May 28, 2015

May 2015 Birchbox

Finally...after two months of less than desirable Birchboxes (which were very sorely testing my desire to continue subscribing!), I finally got a Birchbox that I love! I wasn't overly impressed with the sample choices this month, so the box was a complete surprise.

When I saw that the samples this month were being curated by Cupcakes and Cashmere, I was thrilled. I'm a big fan of that was actually one of the blogs that inspired me to get started with my own blog. I really love her taste in makeup — very classic, but still not afraid to be bold at times. 

In this month's box...
amika Perk Up Dry Shampoo
Benefit Cosmetics The POREfessional
Marcelle Clay Mask
Naobay Oxygenating Cream Moisturizer
W3LL PEOPLE The Expressionist Bio Extreme Mascara

This was such a great box! I've used The POREfessional several times before and really enjoy it. I'm always a big fan of dry shampoo (the travel size ones that come in Birchboxes are perfect for showing in a backpack or gym bag!). I've never gotten mascara from Birchbox before (nor have I heard of this particular brand), but I'm pretty excited to give it a shot. I have been casually looking for a new mascara for awhile now. I just tried the moisturizer this morning and it smells divine. I have yet to see whether or not it works well, though!

All in all...great month for my Birchbox! Let's hope this trend continues :)

What did you get this month?

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Climb Time

I FINALLY got Whitney to go climbing with me to close out the holiday weekend! I was super pumped for her to tag along. We had a pretty good day...we wandering around the gym for a bit while I explained bouldering to her, then we both solved quite a few bouldering problems for the next few hours. It was a great way to spend some time with friends while sneaking in a workout :)

Tank: American Eagle [similar]
Pants: Yogasmoga [exact]
Shoes: Evolv [exact]

This shirt isn't necessarily the best for climbing. It's looser, which means if I'm on an overhang (like in the first photo), it sometimes is all over the place. However, it's incredibly comfortable, so I love wearing it! It's also a good casual piece for regular wear during the summer.

After a week away from the Tone It Up nutrition plan (out of town guests are too difficult to say no to!), I'm jumping back on the wagon. I whipped up a lovely veggie stir fry the other night using vegetables from my's such a simple and healthy dinner! My other go-to is what I've fondly started calling a "veggie dump." I brown a pound of ground turkey, then throw in whatever veggies I have on hand and pour a jar of marinara sauce over all of it. Easy and delicious :)

What is your go-to easy dinner?

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Barre and Brunch

It was an active holiday weekend! After running Saturday, I opted to head to one of Crystal's practice barre classes on Sunday. It's starting to get easier for sure, but I chatted with Crystal afterwards to see if there was anything I could do to continue upping the difficulty level. As it turns out, there's quite a lot you can do to challenge yourself! So, I just need to commit to pushing myself a bit harder next time.

Because a few friends came along, we followed barre class with brunch! I hadn't had brunch in quite awhile, so it was nice to enjoy a mimosa and an overpriced breakfast sandwich :)

Tank: Forever 21 [similar]
Sports bra: C9 [similar]
Pants: American Eagle [similar]

I haven't busted out these pants in awhile, but they were great for barre. They're among my most comfortable pants! I have a feeling you'll be seeing them pop up here a bit more regularly for the next few weeks.

On an un-workout-related note, has anyone else caught Grace and Frankie on Netflix? It's such a cute show! It's one of those shows that I feel like I could sit down and watch with my grandparents, my parents and my siblings and we'd all love it. I highly recommend you check it out!

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Something About a Saturday Run

There's just something about a Saturday run that makes everything click into place! I had plans to run with Whitney since she just got back into town, but she ended up being a bit under the weather. So, I had a nice, lazy morning and, just as the fog was breaking, I headed out for my run. Since I hadn't run all week, I was planning on a slow, easy run around 3 miles. However, I ended up getting to mile 3 and felt great! 

So, I kept going and ended up running 5 miles and walking another one!

Shirt: Asics [similar]
Pants: C9 [similar]
Shoes: Newton Running [exact]
Sunglasses: Oakley [exact]

It was a pretty brisk day, so I wasn't really sure what to wear. I was definitely cold when I started running but warmed up quickly once I hit my stride. This was a decent middle ground outfit that worked well throughout my run.

After my run, I walked around shopping for a bit. I do some of my best shopping immediately after a that odd? I always cross my fingers that I don't look too sweaty! Anyways, I ended up finding quite a few sales going on, which meant I went home with way too much stuff. I found a deeply discounted wrap at Lululemon, then bras and jeans at Gap. All in, I spent less than $150 but came home with multiple outfits!

Anyone else hitting up the sales this weekend? Any good finds?

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Late Night Bouldering

This week, I've had a few evenings of work-related happy hours and dinners, so I wasn't anticipating a whole lot of time for evening workouts. However, I happened to get home from one of those the other night right as my roommate Jason was heading out to go climbing, so I joined in. Along with his friend Justin, we started the evening with some top roping (something I hadn't done in awhile!), then moved on to the bouldering walls.

Tank: Under Armour [similar]
Sports bra: GapFit [similar]
Pants: Under Armour [exact]
Shoes: Evolv [exact]
Chalk Bag: Mammut [exact]

It's been a good week for workout outfits, in my humble opinion! This is probably one of my favorite ones I've put together in awhile. I love the back of this tank top (it's cute, feminine and provides all kinds of ventilation), especially combined with the fun straps of the sports bra. This is one of the first times I've actually worn my chalk bag while bouldering. Usually, I just leave it sitting on the floor, but I loved not having to remember where exactly I left it throughout my workout. I may have to start wearing it more often!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Back to the Barre

Another night, another barre class! Crystal has several classes to go before she's certified as a barre instructor, so I'm continuing to attend her mock classes to help with her training. It's pretty fun! She's still figuring out what works for her as an instructor, but because there are only a handful of us attending the mock classes, we all get a lot of one on one attention and really get our form down. It's a less formal setting than your typical class, too, so we have fun laughing and commenting on how challenging some of the workout components are. Tonight, my friend Arianne tagged along for her first-ever barre class!

Tank: Under Armour [exact]
Sports bra: C9 [similar]
Pants: Aerie [similar]

This was a pretty good outfit for barre! I've had these Aerie pants forever, but they fit great for barre. They didn't slide down at all (unlike my last choice of pants at barre). I really wish they still made them, but, unfortunately, Aerie discontinued most of their workout clothing. 

I'm hoping to fit in both some running and climbing before the week is over. My plan is to throw some running clothing into my work bag tomorrow in hopes of finding a little pocket of time somewhere during my work day since I have plans after work! I'm looking forward to the long weekend...plenty of time for both relaxing and being active :)

Any big plans for the holiday weekend??

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

A Quick Climb

Sometimes when it's a busy night, having a very motivated roommate can be a spectacular thing. I had a work softball game last night, so I wasn't planning on getting in any other exercise. I had to run home before the game (which didn't start until late), so I had some time to kill. I made some food and settled in to watch some TV. And then my roommate Jason got home.

He wanted to climb and convinced me to tag along. So, I squeezed in an hour of bouldering before softball! It ended up being really nice. I managed to solve a few V2s that I had been struggling with. I'm getting a lot more confident on V2s...I think it's time to start attempting more V3s!

T-shirt: Skirp Clothing [similar]
Leggings: Under Armour [similar]
Shoes: Evolv [exact]

Although I don't wear these pants climbing all that often, they worked really well for me. They performed double duty (softball and climbing) perfectly. The only disadvantage is the color — black pants show a lot of chalk after climbing! This is one of the first times I've worn a regular T-shirt climbing (rather than something made of technical material). It wasn't a big deal for an hour of climbing, but I definitely got a bit hotter and sweatier than usual. I'll be opting for my usual tank top again next time.

Memorial Day is coming up this weekend! Does anyone have fun plans?

Monday, May 18, 2015

Mondays with Mario

Mondays with Mario are back! My company recently moved offices and was in a temporary office space for awhile. There was limited room, so they our Monday boot camps on hold for awhile. They started up again now that we've moved into our new office.

It was a great way to kick off my week! I was sore after running Bay to Breakers yesterday (more to come on that later this week!), so I wasn't exactly super pumped about an intense workout. As challenging as the workout ended up being, it was fun and Mario, the trainer, has a very infectious, positive attitude. We did a lot of plyometrics today, which I haven't done in ages...I'm sure I'll be feeling it tomorrow!

Shirt: Under Armour [similar]
Sports bra: C9 [similar]
Pants: Yogasmoga [exact]
Shoes: Nike [similar]

I resorted to the old bathroom selfie for the first time in awhile tonight! I had plans post-workout, so I had to take a picture in a hurry! I love my event shirt from Bay to fits very comfortably while still being fitted. These pants are not a good choice for plyo workouts! I had to keep pulling them up the entire time, which was a bit frustrating. I think I'll have to turn to my trusty Under Armour pants next time!

Friday, May 15, 2015

A Rare Morning Run

I've expressed my dislike of mornings many, many times on here...yet, this morning, on a day I'd taken off from work, I found myself waking up at my usual time to squeeze in a run. My dad flew in for a visit this morning and we had a long day of wine tasting planned, so I wanted to get a healthy start to my day. 

I met up with Crystal bright and early and we ended up knocking out 4.5 decently paced miles! We're running Bay to Breakers together on Sunday (my dad will be running, too, but he's a much faster running than either of us!), so we wanted to go a little bit further than the usual 5k loop just to see how we held up. Now, we just have to hold on for all 12k of this weekend...

Tank: Lululemon [similar]
Half zip: Nike [similar]
Pants: Calvin Klein Performance [exact]
Shoes: Newton Running [exact]
Sunglasses: Oakley [exact]

Morning workouts are always tricky to plan for in San Francisco, especially when you're running along the water like I generally do. So, I went with one of my trusty Nike Element Half Zips. Inevitably, I ended up too hot about halfway through and tied it around my waist. Fortunately, it's lightweight enough that it wasn't much of a bother. My Calvin Klein pants were all stars yet again, not budging a bit over the course of the run! I really, really love these and need to make another trip to the store.

What is everyone else up to this weekend? Any big plans?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Back to Bouldering

Ahh...feels good to be back to bouldering! Although the barre classes I've done this week are definitely a good workout, climbing is just more enjoyable for me. It doesn't feel like a workout, even if my arms are in pain by the end. So, needless to say, I was pretty happy to squeeze in an hour of bouldering tonight!

Hoodie: Nike [exact]
Pants: Yogasmoga [exact]
Shoes: Evolv [exact]

I know I've preached about this hoodie many a time before...but I just love it so much! It's the perfect casual layer, but the funnel neck elevates it just a step beyond your standard hoodie. And, of course, just days after saying I was giving up on Yogasmoga, I'm posting my third day in a row of wearing their clothing. So, I'll amend what I said previously...these pants do serve their purpose decently with activities requiring body contortion (yoga, climbing, barre), but there's no way I'm going to be wearing them for running or any other cardio session anytime soon.

Only a few more days until Bay to Breakers! I'm doing my last pre-race run with Crystal tomorrow morning. Should be a fun time!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Barre Mock Classes

I've now done two days of barre classes in a body is all kinds of sore! Crystal did the first of her mock classes (if you missed yesterday's post, she's in training to become an instructor), so I went along with a few of my friends. She did a fantastic job! Although barre isn't my favorite workout, it's certainly a really great way to work muscles that don't typically get used. I'm always sore in the strangest places afterwards. I'm looking forward to attending many of Crystal's classes in the future!

Tank: Lululemon [similar]
Pants: Yogasmoga [exact]

This was a pretty perfect outfit for barre! I get a little self conscious in these tank tops sometimes (they're a bit tight in the arm area for me, which leads to some not-so-attractive armpit fat). However, it's great when you're moving a lot. It moves with you, but stays close to your body. And, despite my recent complaints, these pants also worked very well for this particular workout.

Over the next few days, I'm planning to do some climbing and a lot of running...I'm doing Bay to Breakers this weekend! I'll have all the details from that early next week :)

How is everyone else's week going so far?

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Running + Barre

As I mentioned the other day, I scheduled both a run and a barre class the day after running 5.5 miles. Why I thought this was a good idea is beyond me...but, hey, I did it!

To provide a bit of context here, my friend Crystal (who I've run with many a time) is in training to become an instructor at The Dailey Method, a barre studio. So, I agreed to go running with her before meeting up for a class the other day. She's hosting a few mock classes to hone her teaching skills, so I wanted to get to a regular class beforehand to make sure I had something fresh in my memory to compare it to. We squeezed in a two-miler before a class on this particular day.

And, to say the least, I am now super sore!!

Tank: American Eagle [similar]
Pants: Under Armour [exact]

I was struggling a bit to figure out what outfit would be good for both barre and running, and this is what I ended up with. I had a Nike half zip on top of this for running (it was cold!) and it worked out pretty decently. The one thing I would recommend for barre, though, is wearing form-fitting clothing rather than something loose like this tank top. Since there are a lot of inverted movements, it's definitely useful to wear something that's going to stick with your body during barre. Otherwise, you're going to have a shirt falling into your face pretty regularly during the class!

Stay tuned for more barre (and running) workouts this week! More mock classes to come :)

Saturday, May 9, 2015

A Long Run on a Windy Saturday

Today was one of those running days where everything clicked. It was a pretty cold, foggy, blustery morning here, so I wasn't particularly anxious to get going. In fact, I kept finding excuses to put off my run. First, I went grocery shopping with a friend. Next, I started doing laundry. It wasn't until the Internet cut out at my house that I finally managed to drag myself out the door.

I normally start my runs with five minutes of walking, just to make sure everything is somewhat warmed up. Today, I was anxious to start running because of the wind...I knew I wasn't going to be warm until I started pushing myself! So, once I hit that five minute mark, I cranked up my music and off I went. The original plan was just to run my usual 5k loop. However, once I was nearing that point, I took a mental inventory of how I was feeling and decided to keep going.

Despite continuing to feel pretty phenomenal the entire run, I did end up stopping myself when I hit 5.5 miles. Since I haven't been doing many long runs lately, I didn't want to push myself too far and end up getting hurt. I did throw in a few hills at the end, though, so that I could up the difficulty factor :)

I did a lot of stretching when I got home, too, because I have plans for a run and barre class tomorrow (with Crystal) already!

Shirt: Nike [similar]
Pants: GapFit [similar]
Shoes: Newton Running [exact]
Sunglasses: Oakley [exact]

As I mentioned earlier, the weather wasn't exactly perfect when I left my house for my run. I was already wearing this shirt (it's one of my favorites!), so I just kept it on for the run. It was great for the first 2-3 miles, but when I changed directions and had the wind at my back, I got pretty warm. So, I ended up tying it around my waist and running most of my run in just a sports bra (not something I typically do...but, hey, I was running farther than usual!). 

Hope everyone else is having a lovely weekend!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Bouldering On Up

It's almost the weekend! I have very little planned for this weekend (aside from a few workouts!). I've purposely avoided making plans for the weekend, too — after Tahoe last weekend and a fully scheduled out one the weekend before, I'm ready to relax!

I opted to squeeze in some bouldering tonight since I hadn't climbed at all this week. After solving a few V2s on the first try right at the beginning of the evening, I was feeling pretty confident in my climbing skills! So, I attempted a couple of V3s. Although I wasn't very successful with them, it felt pretty incredible to do so well on some of the V2s that have been stumping me for awhile. I love climbing, but I don't necessarily always have a ton of trust in my bouldering abilities (particularly when I'm near the top of the wall and afraid of falling!). Tonight helped build that up quite a bit!

Tank: Forever 21 [similar]
Pants: Yogasmoga [exact]
Shoes: Evolv [exact]

Although I still love the vibrant colors of my Yogasmoga pants, I think I've just about given up on them as far as workout pants go. I've noticed they've been stretching out a lot lately, and I can't really use them for anything beyond casual wear and the occasional climbing or yoga (they fall down too much to use them for anything else). Since I've found my Under Armour and Calvin Klein crops that fit perfectly, I can't see myself buying these ones again. Instead, I'll just keep my fingers crossed that some bright colors come out from those brands!

Tonight, I'm going to leave you with some music. As I've mentioned before, I'm totally in love with Brandon Flowers' (the lead singer from The Killers) solo music. The album comes out in a little over a week, but he's been releasing a few songs in advance. Here's the latest, "I Can Change." It's yet another catchy tune that I can't seem to get out of my head :)

Enjoy your Friday!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Running & Painful Progress

Happy Tuesday! My company is moving to a new office tomorrow, so everyone worked from home the last two days. I was getting a bit stir crazy, so Whitney and I scheduled a post-work run so we could both get out of our houses. She's headed off on vacation now, so it was our last run together in awhile.

Speed-wise, it was a great one! We had two sub-10 minute miles. I'm pretty sure that's the first time I've accomplished that in years. I honestly can't remember the last time I did that! It was definitely a painful run, though. I had a side stitch for the first half of it and had to focus quite intensely on my breathing to work through it. It's so worth it when I see the progress over time on MapMyRun, though!

Half zip: C9 [similar]
Pants: Under Armour [exact]
Shoes: Newton Running [exact]
Sunglasses: Oakley [exact]

It was a cold and windy one tonight! I usually find this half zip to be a little bit on the warmer side, which ended up being perfect for today. It's also a little tighter than most of my half zips (I've had it for a few years!), which makes it great when I'm not interested in layering. Another fun fact for you...the fact that I pretty much always run in sunglasses isn't because it's overwhelmingly sunny here in San Francisco (although it has been pretty nice lately!) — it's because of wind! If I don't wear something to protect my eyes from the wind, my eyes water constantly and I look like I just got done sobbing by the end of the run. My trusty Oakleys do a wonderful job of preventing that :)

How is your running going? Any big progress lately?

Lake Tahoe Weekend + Running at Altitude

One of my best friends in the world, Julia, moved to Lake Tahoe not too long after I moved to San Francisco. We lived next door to one another before I moved, it was nice to have her within relatively easy driving distance again! Since then, we've done a pretty good job of visiting each other around once a month. She had surgery last week, so I opted to head up there and spend the weekend with her while she recovered.

Since, understandably, we weren't exactly out doing many strenuous activities, I decided to take some time on Saturday to go for an easy run. Julia and one of her roommates recommended that I head to Nevada Beach and Round Hill.

I started out with this trail down to the beach. The trees in the Tahoe area are just incredible! These beautiful, tall pine trees are everywhere, giving the air a subtle scent and making even a short stroll feel like something out of a fairytale. The contrast between the dark trees and the bright blue sky is pretty stunning, as well.

At the beach, the trees cleared up (for the most cool is it that there are pine trees on the beach, though?!) and revealed breathtaking views of mountains and water in just about every direction. 

Although I wanted to just sit and take it all in, I turned back towards Round Hill to make sure I was actually getting in a somewhat decent run.

That was when things got a little challenging. I hadn't noticed that I was running on a slight downhill slope on the way to the beach, so I was heading uphill for a ways once I turned around. Within seconds, I could feel every muscle in my legs! Normally, I tackle some decent hills on my running routes, so I was a little confused as to why this little incline was getting the best of me.

Then, it dawned on me — altitude!

South Lake Tahoe has an average elevation of 6,237 feet, while San Francisco averages just 52 feet above sea level. After living in Park City, Utah, for two years, I stopped thinking about altitude because my body was used to it...but, clearly, it isn't anymore! I ended up having to stop and walk for a few of the uphill portions of my run but didn't feel quite so bad about it after that realization.

Post-run, I cooled down with a walk along the beach. The water was freezing, but it felt pretty nice on my feet after running! 

After I'd logged my run for the day, I went back to Julia's and we made an incredible pizza for dinner — whole wheat dough, mozzarella, ricotta, garlic and bacon! Not exactly part of my Tone It Up nutrition plan, but it was worth the splurge. All things considered, Julia and I stuck to healthy choices most of the weekend!

What did everyone else do this weekend? Any fun adventures?

Monday, May 4, 2015

May the 4th Be with You (at Yoga)!

After a nice (but too short!) weekend getaway to Lake Tahoe, I'm back in action! Although my head wasn't exactly in the right place this afternoon (all I wanted to do was catch up on TV and knock back a glass of wine or two!), my roommate talked me into making the healthy decision to go to the gym for a bit of climbing and a yoga class.

I hadn't been to yoga in weeks! I opted for the slightly more advanced class this time since I wasn't feeling very fulfilled in the beginner one. This one was definitely a challenge! I can't say I'm the biggest fan of hot yoga (it makes me feel like I'm going to pass out), but this was certainly a good workout. It was a vinyasa flow class...nothing exceptional, but I'm pretty certain my abs are going to be feeling it tomorrow. It was pretty cold in the gym before yoga class so, considering that today is May 4th, I opted for one of my favorite layers: my Star Wars sweatshirt!

Sweater: Forever 21 [similar]
Tank top: Under Armour [exact]
Pants: Under Armour [exact]

I caved and bought a few more pairs of my beloved Fly By compression capris at the Under Armour outlet the other day (they were on sale...two pairs for $60!). I've been loving bright blue lately, so I was happy to add these to my collection! They were phenomenal for hot yoga...moved well with me without showing any sweat whatsoever. The venting in the tank top also proved perfect for the hot room.

Later this week, I'll be sharing a bit about my weekend trip, including my attempt at running. As it turns out, I'm not so great at running when I'm at 6,000+ ft. altitude! But, hey, I tried!

How was your weekend?