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Surprise Engagement!

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Last night, Brian and I went over to our friends’ house not thinking anything about it.  We are both pretty social people and we usually end up going somewhere or having friends come to our apartment at least once a weekend, so in our eyes there really was no reason to suspect that something was different about this night.

We arrived and chatted with friends, still not thinking anything was out of the ordinary until someone mentioned that there was a surprise….a surprise??!  When Brian and I heard this, we were soo confused because we had no idea that there was a surprise and we had no idea what this surprise was.  It didn’t take long to figure out (at least for Brian) when we realized that Caitlin and Brian (one of the couples that is usually in our circle of friends) was not there!  The surprise was that they were getting engaged as we spoke and then they were coming to meet all of us to celebrate!!

It was a great celebration!

We surprised and congratulated Caitlin as she walked through the door.

She shared her story with all of us.

The happy couple!

We then spent the night celebrating, hearing the story, and having a great time 🙂

Tori and Kate match!

Me and the newly engaged bride-to-be 🙂

 

Today

Today, I woke up, had some oats for breakfast, then headed out the door to my free lululemon yoga class.  It is always such a great way to start the Saturday, and after doing various workout throughout the week it is good to dedicate one full our to stretching the body out.

I also find that I am usually a pretty energetic and high strung person, so it is also good to take an hour to just chill and only focus on myself and how I am feeling.

I then went grocery shopping and picked up a little treat for myself.

Zico Coconut Water!  I have read several great things about the flavor of Zico and of the benefits of coconut water it self, and while I was in Thailand, I actually tried coconut water for the first time ever…out of an actual coconut!

The Zico water tasted great (although not as good as from the actual coconut), and I am curious as to what the other flavors taste like.  I will let you know when I try them!

 

I then came home and quickly whipped up a meal for Brian, my mom, my brother, and me.  My mom and brother stopped by for dinner so that I could say good bye before Kenny flew back to Florida for school.

Don’t worry, it’s healthy…and there will be a recipe coming soon!

Brian and I are now going to dog sit and read more of the Hunger Games!!

 

What are your plans this Saturday night?

St. Patty’s Day Yoga

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I love the feeling of waking up in the morning when my eyes just pop right open and I am completely ready to jump out of bed.  This morning was one of those mornings.

It is going to be another beautiful, warm, and sunny day here in Indianapolis and the buds are starting to become leaves on the trees!

Look at those buds!

 

When I first arrived in Indianapolis a week ago, the weather was nice but the trees were completely bare.  I think it is so cool that literally in the week I have been here I have been able to see the buds and trees comes to life 🙂

This morning, I was craving some oats so I combined my oats with Sunwarrior protein powder, half of an apple, and just under a cup of strawberries.  The breakfast was satisfying and delicious and will give me the perfect amount of energy for the day.

Yoga

Some of you may know that while I was working on the cruise ship, one of the many classes that I taught was yoga.  Now, I have NEVER been a flexible person and prior to teaching yoga every other day on the cruise ship, I had taken two yoga classes and did a little self study by practicing poses or “asanas.”  You may remember the “Yoga Pose of the Day.

Downward Facing Dog

After going through a special training course in London and actually teaching the class, I must say that my flexibility has definitely increased, and I love the feeling I get AFTER a yoga class.  Will I ever be a yoga instructor?  Probably not, but I completely appreciate the practice of yoga and understand the benefits.  So, today, I will be heading over to Lululemon for a complimentary yoga class!

It will feel great to stretch and strengthen my body with yoga this morning.  It has been two weeks since I have completed a class, and I can feel a couple of aches in my body that I know yoga will help.  After my class I plan on going for a little jog so that I can enjoy this perfect day outside!

Hope you all have a happy St. Patrick’s Day!

A healthy pot of gold!

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Things of Possible Interest:

Starting Out Hard!

Today is one of those days where I don’t work until the afternoon.  I was able to wake up when my body was ready, around 7am.  Not only was I ready to wakeup but I was ready to workout hardcore!

Since my 14 day free trial is over at the gym I was using with Body Pump, I thought that a run would be in my best interest…especially since I am running a 6 mile race on Saturday morning.

I didn’t map my run before I headed out because I went on a route that I am pretty familiar with.  Based on previous run times I think I went between 5 and 6 miles.  I then came back and did some ab exercises superset with push-ups.

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For some reason, push-ups are always so hard for me!  I ended up doing a total of 20 push-ups non girly style, which was hard work for me!  Doing them as a superset made it much easier for me to approach 20 real push-ups.  A superset is when two different exercises are performed right in a row without a break in between.  This is great when you are on a time schedule or are just impatient like me and you don’t want to wait between sets to complete the next.  It’s kind of like exercise multi-tasking. And I LOVE multitasking 😉

Yoga Pose of the Day

Today’s yoga pose is:  Standing Forward Bend

This move is actually hard for me because I have and have always had very tight hamstrings.  A variation on this move is to use a block under your hands in order to keep legs straight.  I did not have a block so I tried to keep my legs as straight as possible!

Benefits of Standing Forward Bend:  Strengthens the feet, knees, and thighs, stretches the hamstrings and calves, improves the function of digestive and reproductive systems, opens the hips and groins, stimulates the liver, kidneys, and digestive system, relieves menopausal discomfort, headache, insomnia, and fatigue, alleviates discomfort from sinusitis.

Breakfast

Ok, so I took a little break from my smoothies this week, but today it’s back!  I couldn’t part from them long, so today a coffeerific mocha peanut butter spinach banana smoothie was the way to go.

Blogging Issues

Ok, so I made a little mistake and didn’t realize that if I began deleting pictures from my media library that they would delete from every page and post that they were on, so if you go to my About Me page or many earlier posts they are photoless…but don’t worry!  I am trying to fix it 🙂

Other Interesting News:

Happy Thursday!

Yoga Pose is Back!!

Body Pump on Monday’s doesn’t begin until 9:25.  There are definitely pros and cons of having it later in the mornings.

Pros:

  • Not worrying about setting an alarm clock
  • Plenty of time to eat breakfast before
  • It is light out and I can ride my bike
  • I can get a couple of things done before class
Cons:
  • I feel a little like I have to wait around for class
  • I miss a good portion of the Today show
  • I really like waking up and banging my workout out first thing
Pros and cons aside…it was still a good and challenging class.

My Body Pump set up

Yoga Pose of the Day 
It’s back!  Sorry about the weekend long hiatus, but Yoga Pose is back and ready for action!
Today’s pose is Upward-Facing Dog
**That is my Bic Band in my hair…and I love it!   Really, they don’t slide around.
Benefits of Upward-Facing Dog:  Strengthens the legs, buttocks, torso, shoulders, arms, and wrists, opens the chest increasing lung capacity, stretches the shoulders and back, lengthens the spine and opens the abdominal cavity, stimulates teh digestive and lymphatic systems, improves posture.
Lunch
I then made myself a little smoothie bowl for lunch. Chocolate Peanut Butter to be exact, with a little spinach and banana thrown into the mix.
Work Fashion
And now I am off to work for a couple of hours….this is another one of those days that really feels like three because it is broken up so weird!

Pigeon

I went to another amazing Body Pump class today.  I have had a different instructor every time, and they each have their own style, which is great!

There is one thing, however, that I don’t like about Body Pump.  It doesn’t make me sweat!  Now, I don’t know if you are like me, but I rate a good workout on 3 things:

  1. How sweaty I get during
  2. How my body and muscles feel directly after
  3. How my body and muscles feel the next day
I know that I am technically getting a great workout in, and I feel challenged the entire time…literally by the end I can barely do another tricep dip, but I just am not getting sweaty.  Anyone have any ideas why?
Yoga Pose of the Day
It’s back!  Today’s pose…my favorite from Friday’s class.  Pigeon Pose!
If you are more flexible than me…which most of you probably are you can reach your arm straight back and touch your foot to your head.  Sorry I couldn’t demonstrate that part of the stretch. 
Benefits of the Pigeon:  Energizes the body, opens the hip flexors, thighs, chest, and shoulders, improves circulation to the abdominal cavity and low back, stimulates the digestive and reproductive systems, alleviates menstrual and menopausal discomfort, encourages healthy thyroid parathyroid and adrenal function, therapeutic for low blood pressure, infertility, and headache.
Lunch
Originally I had a to-do list for today…much like any other day, but as soon as Brian got home from his exam he asked if I wanted to go to lunch at little restaurant/bar called Bourbon Street with some of his dental school friends.  Initially, I thought “No, I need to get this stuff done…” but then I thought “I am the only one giving myself this deadline…so sure!”  and I am so glad that I went.
It is a perfectly sunny day, nearly 80 degrees, with a slight breeze.  We ate outside…what more could I ask for!?
I started off the meal with a Strongbow Cider…one of my favorites!
I then ate the Cajun Chicken Salad.   So flavorful and delicious, it didn’t even need dressing!
Mixed salad greens, hard boiled egg, red onion, cheese, tomato, cucumber, sunflower seeds, and cajun chicken.  Tasty!
Now, I am back at home and it is time to be a little productive before heading into work this evening 🙂
Vera Bradley
I know I told you all about the catalog earlier, but check out this video!

Totally Refreshed

Good Afternoon!

Let me just say that I have had one productive morning.

  • Clean the bathroom

Fresh and Clean bathroom!


  • Put away laundry
  • Sign up for Fort 4 Fitness
  • Go to Yoga
  • Run 6 miles (actually changed to 3 miles)
  • Learn song for Chelsea’s wedding
  • Schedule wedding photography meeting
  • Make cookies
  • Clean/vaccuum the bedroom
  • Banking
  • Call the credit union
And there is still plenty of time in the day to accomplish the rest!
Workout
Ok, so I really wanted to run 6 miles today before hitting up yoga.  Two things stopped me from doing that.  First, my knee hurt a little teeny weeny bit again.  Because I have never had pain like this before I am just trying to be suuuuper careful.  Now, the pain wasn’t anything debilitating, but there was definitely something there….and that is what made me nervous.  I stopped at mile three.
The second thing that prevented me from running was this weird feeling I get when I drink caffeine.  It doesn’t happen all the time, but sometimes I get sweaty, dizzy, shaky, and just feel all around weird. So, because of that and my knee I only ran three miles.
I then biked about three miles round trip (I went a little extra on the way to the gym) while riding my bike to yoga.  This was officially my second yoga class, and it was great!
The instructor was this little old lady, and if you saw her on the street there is no way you would think she was a yoga instructor…but she was doing all of the stretches with us!  My favorite stretch was….the pigeon.
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This pose just felt the best and like it gave me the most stretch.  My favorite part of the whole workout was the end.  Throughout the entire class the lights were off, and the sound of light flutes, water, and chimes were playing in the background.
At the very end, she told us to lie down on our backs, and she gave us all eye pillows.  The eye pillow smelled like chamomile tea, and my body was instantly relaxed.  After laying on the ground listening to the soothing tone of the woman’s voice along with the music it was time to open our eyes and begin to “wake up our bodies.”  I seriously felt, and feel renewed!  I never take the time to just sit there and relax, so this class was great.  I hope that I can fit it into my schedule next week!
I have just been snacking throughout the day, so no picture for lunch…sorry!  Enjoy the rest of your Friday.  I need to cross those last two things off of my to-do list!

Yoga and Black Beans…in Brownies?

Yoga Post of the Day:  Head-to-Knee Forward Bend

 

This pose looks familiar and somewhat simple, but for a person with tight hamstrings (like myself) it can be a bit uncomfortable and challenging.  

 

 

 

For this pose, I had to do the modified easier variation which is using the band around my foot.  If you are more flexible, then the final step would actually be to reach farther and hold onto your wrist and try to make your back as flat as possible.

I had just finished up my 3 mile run, so this stretch was a perfect way to lengthen my hammies.

Benefits of this pose:  Opens the chest and lungs, stretches the calf, hamstring and lower back muscles, helps relieve menstrual and menopausal discomfort, improves digestion, increases circulation to the liver, kidneys and colon, alleviates fatigue and headache, strengthens the lower back.

10 Things All Women Need

Because I don’t go into work until this evening, I had the opportunity to watch the Today Show.  On the segment with Kathy Lee and Hoda they talked about 10 things every woman needs.  The list included

  1. Great serving pieces
  2. A beautiful throw
  3. Personalized stationary
  4. A signature scent
  5. Personalized facial and beauty routine
  6. An everyday tote
  7. Cashmere sweater
  8. Inexpensive Fall Jacket
  9. Beautiful piece of lingerie
  10. Party dress
I really loved their list because I felt like everything on it was attainable, even for a recent college grad on a budget like me!  I think that my favorite items on the list are, great serving pieces because I love making food for others and having them over to share it, a beautiful throw because I am always cold and always have blankets laying around, personalized stationary because I love the hand written letter and stationary can be so personal, and an inexpensive fall jacket because I love jackets (since I am always cold) and they are so cute!
What are your favorites on the list?
Lunch
For lunch today, I used some of the leftover canned salmon from yesterday’s salad.  I mixed:
I then had my favorite side…fresh veggies.
I also baked an experimental treat, and I would have to say (with Brian’s agreement) that the experiment was a success.
Blackbean Brownies (Adapted from Allrecipes.com)
Ingredients:
  • 1 can of black beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 Tbsp of applesauce
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp instant coffee
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
Preparation:
Preheat the oven to 35o and grease an 8×8 inch baking pan.  Place all ingredients in food processor except for the chocolate chips.
 Pulse until completely combined.  Pour the batter into the pan and top with chocolate chips.
Bake for 30 minutes.
**Allow to cool completely before cutting (don’t be too anxious like me) they will be crumbly, and the bottom of several brownies may stick to the pan in pieces…oops 😉
Brian totally forgot that there were black beans even in these brownies when he tried them, so trust me…they are good 🙂