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Biking, Exercise, Life, Week in Pictures, Weight loss

Crepes at Cafe Mezcla, bike rides, and hammocking

It’s been a beautiful week around here as all the flowering trees are fully in bloom and the landscape is greening up. Last week was Brady’s birthday and we were able to do a lot of outdoor adventuring to celebrate. I had been planning a weekend backpacking trip to Shenandoah National Park for the weekend but we didn’t end up going because the weather forecasts were looking potentially stormy and I was also dealing with a strained muscle in the hip flexor area. Sad. We’re still hoping to go this summer and we may try doing a shorter and close to home backpacking trip this weekend.

Since Brady worked late on his actual birthday, we went out on Wednesday evening to Brookeside Gardens to see the tulips before meeting up with his family at Cheesecake Factory for dinner.

Brookeside Gardens tulips in spring

Brookeside Gardens tulips in spring

Brookeside Gardens tulips in spring

The whole happy birthday to you song isn’t his favorite thing but it’s only once a year so he can deal with it. 

One of his birthday presents as a part of the backpacking package was getting a double hammock so we tested it out on Friday evening with a Subway picnic.

Hammock in Centennial Park, Maryland

Hammock in Centennial Park, Maryland

Hammock in Centennial Park, Maryland

Sunset at Centennial Park, Maryland

Sunday morning we went out to Cafe Mezcla for some crepes – yummm. I’ve loved this place since it opened a few years ago but it was always super slow service. I guess they’ve heard the cries because we actually got our food pretty quick yesterday. I always get the same savory crepe that’s stuffed with tomatoes, spinach, eggs, and aioli because it’s so so good. Brady got a banana foster crepe and we shared a nutella frapp. If you live near Columbia, Maryland, you should really try out Cafe Mezcla!

We went for a ride at the end of the day out to Lake Elkhorn and back which is about 12 miles round trip. I love that we get to ride around 2 of the recreational lakes on this ride.

bike ride around Lake Elkhorn, Columbia, Maryland
bike ride around Lake Elkhorn, Columbia, Maryland

I’ll end with a couple quick shots from Centennial Park this morning. I tend to really only go in the evenings but this morning reminded me that I should get up here more often in the mornings! It was lovely weather and it’s kinda nice to see it in a different light. 

Back Pain, Exercise, Goals, Motivation Monday, Weight loss, Women

April Goals 2017

March has come and gone and another birthday month is in the books. It’s kind of crazy how fast this year has been flying by because I feel like I only just wrote my goals for the whole year and we’re already 1/4 through it! It’s time to move on and share my April goals, but first, a quick March health and fitness recap:

  • Eat vegetable centered meals for lunches and dinners
  • Start weight training
  • Strengthening my back and core
  • Posture awareness
  • Keep track of my steps and water intake for this month: I’d really like to try and be getting my 10,000 daily steps in at least 5 days a week. I’m obviously in favor of 7, but if I can get 5/7 each week this month, I’m going to be pretty happy.
  • Run

April Goals

I’d say that for most of my goals, they were moderately accomplished and I’m improving in each category. Considering that I was sick for most of the month of March, I’m really happy with what got done.  

I’ve only started running in the last week because I felt like I really needed to just be walking. Even now, I’m taking up running slowly because of some issues with my knees. You can see a general workout recap below.

March Workout Recap - April Goals

The biggest accomplishment for the month was getting in my daily 10,000 steps! I really had to work for this one because if I wasn’t being proactive or dedicated to the goal, I would have come way under on most days. The crazy thing is, I’ve started to notice changes in my body due to the step taking and I wasn’t expecting much of it to happen at all. Over the last month I’ve realized that –

  • I’m getting more workouts and walks in. I’m not spending days just sitting around and I’m making less excuses
  • My back still has the same triggers but overall I’m in a better place
  • I don’t think I’ve really lost much weight, but I feel that my body is toning and looking a little slimmer.

Sure, some of this could be because I’ve also been working out as well, but I will definitely attribute most of my success this month to taking my 10,000 steps. It’s like having this goal as a central goal is keeping everything else in line.

I didn’t start until March 2nd so for the purpose of making better calculations, March is going to be 30 days long 😉

  • 22/30 days with 10,000+ steps
  • 296,129 steps total
  • Average of 9,871 steps per day
  • Most steps in a day: 16,187 steps

March Steps and April Goals

Part of the step counting motivation has been to prepare for our Disney World trip next month. We’re going to be in the parks for 5 days and if you’ve ever been, you know that there’s usually a ton of walking. The last 2 times I’ve gone, I’ve ended up in a wheelchair for part/most of the trip. I’d really like to be able to handle all the walking and not have too much pain so I’m trying to prep myself to be ready.

Here are my April Goals:

  • Again I’m going with trying to get in at least 10,000 steps in for every day in April. I didn’t get a full 7-day streak in last month so I’m attempting to get a really long one this month – maybe even 30 days! 😉
  • Running 3 times a week.
  • Getting in a proper stretch after each run and workout — I really need to start doing this because I keep forgetting and I’m paying for it. I need to do more yoga.
  • Strength training. I have horrible muscular endurance and I’d like to do at least 3 20+ minutes sessions a week with some random throughout the day exercises thrown in to help build up strength
  • Mindful eating. I’ve been realizing more and more how much of my life is focused on food. I love to eat good food and sometimes I just love to eat which leads to overeating. I’d really like to focus on eating slower, enjoying my food, and not stuffing myself.


Do you count steps?

In terms of overall health, is there any one thing you can point to that keeps you on track to accomplish your goals?

What are your April Goals?


linking with Amanda for this post

Exercise, Goals, Motivation Monday, Week in Pictures, Weight loss, Women

Motivation Monday #4

I can’t believe it’s Monday again… especially since last week was a week where all the days blended together and it was hard to keep track of which day was which. I spent the whole week subbing in a first grade classroom where all the kids were sick. I had kids cough right in my face while I was working with them and it wasn’t long before I felt myself fighting against the bug. It finally caught up to me on Friday and by the evening I really wasn’t feeling well. Kind of rough because we were spending the weekend up in Lancaster, PA. It started with my throat and I was extremely fatigued and dizzy whenever I was sitting or standing on Saturday. Sunday had some residual throat discomfort and minor nose stuffiness but it’s been a pretty light cold so far in comparison to what I’m usually hit with. I’m really hoping that this is the extent of it all.

If you need some ideas on how to fight symptoms of a cold, here’s an article with some suggestions – many of which I use whenever I’m feeling yuck.

Because last week was a rough week for my health, I struggled to have any energy to put into working out, but I pushed through a couple anyways including really focusing on getting steps in.

  • Monday – 15 minute bodyweight exercises, 10K steps
  • Tuesday – 5.4 mi bike, 35 minutes of Zumba, 12.5K steps
  • Wednesday – 10K steps
  • Thursday – 3 mi bike, 2.4 mi run/walk, 11.7K steps
  • Friday: 7.5K steps (sick)
  • Saturday: 3.3K steps (sick)
  • Sunday: 35 minutes Zumba, 10K steps

Continue Reading

Biking, Life, Thinking Out Loud, Week in Pictures

Mail troubles, current reading, and an anniversary dinner

Hello there all ye lovelies. I have some distressing news to share but don’t worry, there’s a happy ending to this tale.

The USPS Story

We ordered our Disney tickets just about a month ago and they were shipped a few days later. I was expecting to get them about 2 weeks ago but they spent an extended period of time “In Transit to Destination” with no location listed. It sat like that for over a week. I began to get worried because that’s $800 just sitting in limbo. Well today they finally arrived, no thanks to the USPS because this is how it came:

Post office USPS mess up, ripped package

Do you see the rip towards the top? It was ripped over 2/3 of the way across the top of the package which makes me feel like someone opened my mail; I mean, these bubble envelopes aren’t easy to rip. Maybe it wasn’t tampered with but I can’t be trusting. I linked them straight up to our account to make sure that no one was already trying to use them and thank goodness I didn’t have to go through the hassle of harassing the post office about stolen tickets. 

The happy ending here is that we are less than 2 months away from our Disney vacay! Continue Reading

Exercise, Goals, Motivation Monday, Zumba

Motivation Monday #3

Happy Monday! Did you have a good weekend?

This week I’m trying to implement a system to help get me started on my weight training goal. I have a lot of insecurities going into this because it’s never been anything I’ve tried to work on before but I really want to try because I think it’s an important part of a healthy weight loss journey. My aim for this week is to get in 1 gym weight training session with Brady and then do 4 home/body weight quick sessions. As I get used to having a routine, I want to be getting to the gym twice a week for a good session.

For now my home sessions are going to focus on various combinations of these 15 exercises:

  1. Push ups
  2. Triceps dips
  3. Bicycle crunches
  4. Plank 
  5. Plank with hip dips
  6. Side plank
  7. Sit ups
  8. Lunges
  9. Squats
  10. Bridge
  11. Donkey/firehydrant kicks
  12. Clamshells
  13. Side steps with resistance band 
  14. Opposite arm/leg lifts
  15. Side step ups

I ran twice last week and did one 55 minute Zumba session… Continue Reading

Back Pain, Exercise, Goals, Pain Relief

February Recap | March Goals 2017

Hello birth-month! March is finally here and we get to spend the whole month celebrating me! If only. But my birthday is in just a few weeks on St. Patrick’s day and my sister is getting home from college that day so I have a lot to look forward to.

The time has come to check out what I accomplished in the month of February and see if I met any of my goals…

February Goals

  • Keep a food/health diary: fail. This didn’t happen at all except for a couple days where I logged in to My Fitness Pal to log a soup I had just created.
  • Do yoga every day: Another fail. This is actually pretty depressing because I wanted to do this a lot but I think I accomplished 3/28 days. Ouch.
  • Run 3 days a week: Another nope. I was totally wiped of all energy at the beginning of the month that I had a hard time doing anything and all I wanted to do was sleep.  It got to the point where I was like, I need to get out and do what I can do even if it’s not much. Just getting out the door is going to get the streak rolling. So I walked. A week of walking turned into a week of workouts which turned into an even better week of workouts. I feel like I’m going into March with positive momentum and I’m looking forward to seeing my board for March fill up.

February exercises Continue Reading