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Party time!

Whelp, somehow it happened. I managed to get another year older. I have no idea how a year has gone by. This is just ludicrous, ludicrous I tell ya!

As much as I didn’t want to have or deal with my birthday this year, I ended up having an absolutely fabulous one! Thanks to all my family and friends 🙂

We took a long weekend and headed down the shore last Thursday – wahoo! I officially started training last week so I had an 8 mile long run on the calendar. I woke up early on Friday to get it in – but it was SUCH a scorcher, oh my gosh. It was so hot that I started getting chills by the end. I had to take a few walking breaks because it was just a bit too much. I didn’t feel great afterwards because it took a lot out of me and I felt a bit defeated that my first long run was just meh. But it was the longest run I’d done since the half in May so that made me feel somewhat accomplished.

After my run I had some pancakes and took a quick shower, then it was time for the beach!!

Saturday turned out to be cloudy all day 😦 which obvi made me not a happy camper. I went for a 4 mile recovery run and thankfully it was a LOT cooler than Saturday and I felt pretty good. Since it wasn’t a beach day we went out for a little bit to this fun outdoor bar!

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There was a surprisingly good number of people on the beach for a cloudy day! We hung out for a little, had some cheese fries (obvs) and listened to a pretty cool live band.

Back home to cook some dinner! Lobsters and crab legs. Look at the size of these things – they were as big as me!

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Great seafood feast for my birthday dinner! (and some land animals for those averse to sea creatures!)

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Family selfie!

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Rest of the night was spent playing games and watching Olympic trials!

Sunday, Alexis came and spent the day with us on the beach!! And she brought the good weather with her, thank goodness!

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Kevin isn’t as good a beach bum as we are, so we played some cards to entertain him.

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And then, since we don’t like to act our age, we played with our food – doesn’t this look like Texas?!

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Kevin’s family went home Sunday morning, so after the beach Kevin and I ordered some food for dinner and watched the Gymnastics Olympic Trials – they’re my fave! I love the Olympics so much!!

Monday (my actual birthday) turned out to be a beautiful day as well! So Kevin and I went to soak up those rays 🙂

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Doesn’t get much better than that! It should be a rule that I have to spend my birthday on the beach every year!

Later in the afternoon we headed home because my family was coming to see me!! We went out for a super delicious dinner at one of my favorite places.

White sangria for the win!

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And I love these ahi tuna tacos so much! I get the same thing every single time, this is like the only place I allow myself to do such a thing!

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Such a good dinner. And we sat outside because it was so nice. Perfect evening spent with my favorite people 🙂

I love my fam so much and I’m so glad that I got to spend my birthday with them!!!

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After dinner we went home and opened presents and had cake – that my sister made for me! Homemade funfetti because I love funfetti! And my mom still knows how to make my birthdays special even after all these years. You guys are the best!

Tuesday I went out for birthday drinks with my friend/old work bestie. And Wednesday I had dinner with my friend Rachael, who’s birthday is next week! We had a really amazing meal and it was national french fry day so obvi we got a heaping plate full!

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Now those are perfection!

I’d say I’ve had a pretty awesome birthday week. And tonight Kevin is taking me out to dinner at this restaurant that has the best thing I’ve ever eaten. Ever. You’ll just have to wait and find out what it is. What a cliffhanger!

Have a great weekend everyone 🙂

What a pain!

Time for an update on my ever present back issue.

  • Back in February I started noticing my right leg getting tingly when I slept. Didn’t think too much of it until it started getting worse and kept me up through the night.
  • Then my lower back started having some pain
  • Ran the NYC Half marathon in mid-March
  • Tingling stopped, pain wasn’t too bad
  • Was OK for about 2.5 weeks
  • 2 weeks before NJ Marathon it started getting worse. I really cut back on running and increased my yoga/stretching
  • Felt OK going into marathon but told myself not to push. Felt great through marathon. Felt fine after
  • Finally went to doctor – inconclusive as to what the heck was wrong with me. Went to 2nd doctor – told me, oh yeah, you have a herniated disc I’m going to give you a shot. Went to third doctor, and like Goldilocks, 3rd time was a charm
  • Was starting to feel tingly/numbness in my right arm around this time. Was starting to get worse. But really only felt it at work
  • Then the night before the Brooklyn Half Marathon I really thought I was going to drop out because my right arm was ice cold and so tingly. Didn’t drop out – ran race and felt OK but still didn’t over exert myself
  • Went back to doctor after the race. He ordered an MRI on my upper and lower spine
  • MRI showed I have 2 bulging discs in my neck but showed nothing on my back – thank the lord!!!
  • Doc said it’s my sciatica/piriformis muscle – that the muscle is spasming so much it’s mimicking symptoms of a pinched nerve and that’s where I’m getting the tingly feeling from. Had me start doing PT
  • Have been doing PT for about 5 weeks now. Have good days and bad days.
  • Now for the past month have been having bad pain in my left buttocks into upper thigh and sometimes into lower back. Actually worse pain than the right side was. Trying to get that sorted out through PT
  • I’ve been running, but the pain in my left side is persistent and present when I run which is making me nervous. So I’m being extra careful and either taking it super easy or doing the elliptical instead
  • Doctor says that it’s a coincidence my neck and back have issues at the same time – meaning the bulging discs in my neck aren’t the cause of my leg issue. As soon as I get my back/legs under control, he wants me to start on the neck
  • Had follow up appointment last week – doc says if I’m not getting any better through the PT it may be time for a cortisone shot (eeeek!) – he said don’t worry it won’t hurt because it’s a fleshy part of the body (heheh!). Trying to avoid the shot at all costs, but if I keep having mornings like I did today, then I don’t know if that will be possible

So that’s where I am – I’m doing PT about 2x a week and working on my exercises on my own the other days. I’m getting super frustrated because I “started” Chicago training last week and I already feel like I’m failing.

The doctor said the shot would most likely help, but we wouldn’t know just how helpful it would be until I have one – some people it’s a one and done, others you need to do it a few times. But if it’s wearing off way too quickly then obviously there’s something way wrong and I need to just give myself rest. I don’t want to get to that point so I’m really hoping I can get better through the PT.

I’m having a super hard time dealing with this issue because I just do not want to stop running! But I know that I have to take the rest when my body needs it. I have been much better about listening to my body recently and I’m trying to not get so worked up over not being able to run <– but this is a huge work in progress! Especially when I have Chicago to train for!

So that’s where I currently am. Injuries are totes the pits!!! But being healthy is my main priority so I will do whatever it takes to get back to 100%!

Photo Dump – 4th of July Edition

I know 4th of July was so long ago now, but my life has been so hectic recently I haven’t had time to post. So bear with me!

My days have been filled with lots of time on the beach, hanging with family and laughing with friends. I’m a pretty lucky gal!!

This is what happens when I make popcorn and get to dish out the bowls – mine is on the right 🙂 What can I say, popcorn is one of my favorite snacks and I don’t like to share!!

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Taco Tuesday! I think these look profesh!

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Jan (my mom) is just the best ever. She always knows the right things to buy me!!

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What a great day for the beach!

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Tube time in the lagoon!

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I took a quick break from the sun to watch the Italy vs. Germany soccer game. I should have just stayed outside though because I was not happy with the outcome!

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Evening trip up to the beach!

Got a quick game of football in – I was Eli obvi!

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I thought we were in the caribbean!

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The sunsets over the 4th weekend were so phenomenal. I love moments like this when the world seems so serene and perfect and undisturbed. We need many more moments like this in our lives.

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Jan again for the win!! Remember how last time she bought me a key lime pie and I forgot it at home?! Well that was not happening this time! I wrote myself a million notes and stuck them all around the house!

What a beautiful looking pie 🙂

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My mom, my sister and I all have birthdays in the same week – Mom July 5, Beck July 6 and me July 11th. For Beck’s bday her and my mom came into the city and we went to dinner and a show! We saw Fully Committed with Jesse Tyler Ferguson – he is so talented. He was the only one in the show and he played about 20 different roles! I really enjoyed the show.

Then we got to meet him afterwards! He is just the best. So nice and sweet!!

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It was a super fun night 🙂

More to come late on my awesome birthday weekend!!

Photo dump #1!

Hope everyone had a great weekend and enjoyed the beautiful weather!!! We took full advantage and spent it down the shore, we’re very lucky! No running for me this weekend though. Last week was a bit of a set-back week for my back so I wanted to take it easy this weekend knowing I’m getting ready to be in full on training mode in just a week. Eeeek!!! (will recap what’s been going on with my back later on this week).

Instead of a full recap, here are a few photos I’ve snapped over the past week.

Pizza dinner with the kids at work. This is in the running for best pizza. The vodka pizza is just heavenly!!!

 

Made stuffed peppers for dinner – fake meat, diced tomatoes, rice, carrots, mushrooms, shredded cheese, seasoning, bake. Voila! Delish.

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Happy Birthday Alexis!!! Beach day to celebrate one of my most favorite people!!! So glad we had the perfect day 🙂

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Kevin splashing around in the lagoon! It takes a lot to get me to go in there – too afraid of what lurks beneath the murky waters :p

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My suit matched my nails and toes! Always gotta color coordinate!

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Yum dinner! Grilled chicken, corn on the cob, potatoes, fruit, salad and veggie burger for me!

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Me and my fave!

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Sunset pics!

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Perfection 🙂

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Party on the beach!!

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Sunday vibes

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Have a great week everyone!!!

Happy Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day to all the amazing dads out there! Without you guys there’d be a heck of a lot of leaky sinks, running toilets, dark rooms, broken toys and cars that need a fixin’. To my dad in particular, thanks for all your love and support over the years! Thanks for taking me to all my 5am crew practices, for watching me leap, flip and turn for 15 years, and for entertaining my overactive imagination – and for never telling me I couldn’t do what I put my mind to!

You’ve been there for me since day 1!

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And even though you never did master the art of hairstyling (tho I wasn’t so great at it either!), you made up for it by helping me with my homework (maybe doing it all!), hours of playing games (and letting me win) and always giving in when I ask for a favor (and for still doing it to this day)!

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Friday night we drove down to my parents house to spend the night. We ordered pizza from one of our two favorite places – they ended up giving us the wrong order (!!!) – but it was still delicious enough.

After a quick run to Dairy Queen we spent the evening playing Code Names. Everyone was so against it at first but by the end they loved the game. This is why I never understand why people don’t just listen to me from the start! We could avoid a lot of grumblings.

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After several intense rounds, I think the guys came away with the V.

Saturday morning we woke up bright and early. We had to drop our car off to get some work done. Then we headed to the beach for the day! My sister always complains she doesn’t go to the beach – after 5 mins of being there she goes “I’m bored!” Who can ever be bored at the beach!?!

Then it was back to pick up my car and then home for dinner with the fam. After some good home grillin’ it was cake time! Because every holiday needs a cake!

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My mom also got me a key lime pie (my favorite!!!) to take home and I completely forgot to take it 😦 – we were just about home when I realized it and this pie is so good that I contemplated going back for it (not really, but maybe kind of really!).

Sunday we woke up and went for a quick 4 mile run and did some strength. Then we headed over to Kevin’s fam to celebrate Father’s Day. We had a super yummy brunch , chatted a bit and watched James Corden’s carpool karaoke – the Tony Awards special edition one. Successful day! (here you go in case you haven’t seen it!)

 

The rest of the afternoon I’ve been trying to plan our vacation (somewhere in Asia, if anyone has any suggestions, they’re welcomed!) watched some more Bloodline (ohemgee!!!), watched some golf and had my Sunday ice cream cone!

It was a great weekend but it went by so fast and I’m supes tired. I’ve got a busy week coming up, but all fun things. And in just 2 weeks I begin my Chicago marathon training! Eek, can’t believe it’s here already!

Have a great week everyone 🙂

Beach days and Snapple Facts

Sunday nights make me depressed. Even though I had a long weekend it went by way too fast and I can’t believe I have to get up for work again tomorrow.

Last week was a pretty busy week for me. One of my high school friends, Jen, was in town (she currently lives in London!!!) so my friend Rachael and I went over for some dinner and wine and gossip!

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FYI this wine was so, so good. And it wasn’t too sweet like some Rieslings can be.

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And look at this awesome clock – I need one in my future home. It’s the coolest! And since I can’t tell time very well on a normal clock, this is perfect for me 🙂

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It was great to catch up with the gals. We’ve been friends for over half our lives now. That just warms my lil ole heart 🙂

Wednesday night we went out to dinner with two of our friends who just got engaged!!! Yay we’re so excited for them and it was wonderful to be able to celebrate this super special moment with them!

Then Thursday night we headed down to Cape May, NJ for a nice long weekend with Kevin’s family. Yessss, love long weekends!

But I love it even more when Kevin does the driving!

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I was bummed I didn’t have a chance to get yoga in during the week, so I did some research before we left and discovered a cute yoga studio in Cape May that does yoga on the beach! So Friday morning I woke up and took class!

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I love my yoga mat even more when there is sand on it! The setting was beautiful, it was a lovely morning and it was so refreshing to start my morning with an awesome class on the beach!

Then I basically vegged on the beach all day. Not hating this view.

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Friday night was a beauty!

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Saturday morning I woke up and went for a 5 mile run. I felt so great and if I weren’t in such a rush to get to the beach and do nothing, I probably would have run another 5. I was jamming out to the summer oldies radio on Pandora (pretty fantastic – check it out), there was a nice small breeze going and the view was above par.

But I had important things to do. Like discover new Snapple facts!

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Definitely the best fact I’ve ever got. Also, what are people doing out there that this has to be a law?!

Another beauty!

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(I’m talking bout the sunset, not me. But thanks guys 😉 )

Woke up this morning and got on the road early to beat the traffic. I’m always such a sour-puss when I have to leave the beach. I just really feel that I should never have to leave. It’s down right rude making me!

But alas, we did. When we got back home we headed over to the street fair that was going on!

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Those are some funky pants girl! There were so many zeppoles and fried Oreos and sausage and peppers and gyros! We didn’t know what to do with ourselves. So we got some empanadas. And they were delish.

For dinner we decided to make homemade pizza – vodka sauce pizza using the leftover vodka sauce we made last weekend. The pizza turned out so well – and I ate it too fast and couldn’t snap a picture. Oops.

And now I’m just hanging out watching The Tony’s and eating my ice cream cone! I guess this makes Monday seem not as bad…

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It was a super great weekend – fabulous weather, wonderful company and we even snuck in a few episodes of Bloodline!

Have a good week everyone!

Rainy days and Netflix marathons

Thankfully we had one good day this weekend! And it sure was a beauty! I’m so glad summer is finally here, I couldn’t take one more day of sub 70 weather. Today we asked Siri what the temp was outside, and she said, “it’s only 72, I don’t consider that particularly warm.” My kind of gal.

Last week to celebrate global running day, my friend and I ran a 5k for work. Last year we vowed never to do it again because it’s the most crowded race and they do not break it up by pace. Everyone just gets to line up. So you’ll be running and all of a sudden the person in front of you stops and you either crash into them or kill your knees coming to an abrupt stop. But then the email came out this year and she said to me, are we going to do this? And I said, oh I suppose. And there we found ourselves once again.

This year was slightly better, so maybe next year will be fantastic. Even though it was fairly hot, it was a beautiful night to run through Central Park!

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I also decided I want to start running more 5ks. They’re pretty fun, and a heck of a lot less tiring than a marathon!

Arianna Huffington wrote a new book that is seriously right up my alley.

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I’m hoping I pick up some good tips here because I’m struggs central in this department and it’s starting to officially drive me nuts. I also bought a new pillow which I’m hoping will help with both my sleep and neck/back issues.

Speaking of, I had an MRI done on my spine to figure out what the heck is going on with me. A nerve test done on my neck showed some irritation in the nerves in my neck. The MRI showed I have two bulging discs in my neck. Which explains all the tingly and numbness feelings I’ve been having in my arm & leg. Nothing showed in my back, but I’m having the nerve test done on my lower back tomorrow to see if any thing is up down there. I’m really glad I found this doctor because the previous two hardly checked me out and just told me I had a herniated disc in my back and they just wanted to give me a shot. And from the beginning I really felt it could have been my neck and not my back because I was experiencing the tingly feeling in my arm as well.

Tomorrow the the doc and I will discuss what’s causing the soreness in my back. If it’s just the nerves telling my back to hurt, or it’s muscular, or my sciatica inflamed. So more on that later.

Saturday we woke up early and went down to the beach to visit our friend Alexis. It was such a nice day!!

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I could spend all the days of my life at the beach. I’d be the happiest gal in the world if I could do that!

I was pretty tuckered out after being in the sun all day so we just hung out on Saturday night.

Sunday morning I went down to the gym and ran 5 miles and did some strength work. It was super hot in the gym and I was one sweaty mess! But it felt good to be running and I’m loving my new strength routine. I’m really making an effort to work on my strength training and to keep it going during this upcoming training cycle.

So we finally started watching Bloodline. I’ve been trying to get us to start for weeks now but Kevin kept saying no. I stole the remote last night and put it on, much to his dismay. He questioned me on what I knew about the show and who told me about it and he made it known he wasn’t going to like it. 15 minutes later he goes “FYI, I’m intrigued by this show.” And nowww we’ve watched 6 episodes already!

We paused long enough to make some spicy vodka rigatoni! And it was really delicious. I’ve been craving it ever since I had it at this amazing restaurant in NYC (Carbone). So we tried to recreate it. Making vodka sauce is really easy and it came out pretty darn good.

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It rained pretty hard by us today, so comfort food and Netflix was the perfect way to spend a Sunday.

Hope everyone has a great week!!