Treat Yourself Tuesday: Back on Track

Today, I’m linking up with my favorite lady Becky (who I get to see in 1 month minus 1 day at BLEND!!!)  for Treat Yourself Tuesday. As Becky puts it, Treat Yourself Tuesday is a way to reflect on the ways you’ve treated yourself lately:

“Do whatever feels best for you. Do something that will make you feel relaxed and loved and happy. Treat yourself well and treat yourself often so that you will become the best you possible and in turn be your best for others in your life!”

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With things as busy as they’ve been lately (as I mentioned on Friday), it’s been more important than ever for me to remember to slow down and take care of myself. Now, while that often includes indulging in comfort food (or dranks), sometimes the best way for me to treat myself is by treating my body AND soul well…and that is just what I did this Sunday! It was a great way to start my week on the right foot and get back on track.

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It all started with a nice early morning bike ride to the Farmers Market. Tulips, rainbow chard, sweet potatoes, portobello mushrooms, medjool dates, and sugar snap peas…all for about $20. Win. I don’t do it all the time, but I love treating myself to flowers!

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Next up was a longggg overdue pedicure. I hadn’t gotten one since December (due to the whole being on a budget thing), but I decided my poor feet couldn’t go any longer without! I calculated it out, and I had run over 300 miles since my last pedi. DANG. My feet are much happier now!

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After bringing home my loot, I changed into gym clothes and checked out the brand new California Family Fitness (CalFit) on K Street. This crazy ab machine has had my core in a world of hurt ever since I took it on!

The gym literally just opened on Friday, when my friends and I went over to look at the facilities:

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Ummm yeah, that’s a ROOFTOP basketball court. There will also be a bar with wine & beer. Needless to say, I was sold! I now have my first actual gym membership for the first time in almost 3 years! I am really excited about it and am pumped to try out some group fitness classes and switch up my routine a bit. Did I mention the gym is only 3 blocks away from my office? There was really no downside to joining!

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After a good stair master & core workout, I headed home to be even more productive! I prepped some food for the week- made more curry patties (this time with white beans instead of chickpeas), chopped up broccoli and bell pepper, made snap pea baggies to bring to work for snacks, and par-cooked a couple of sweet potatoes.

I did this all in about 1 hours time while I chatted on the phone with my mom. Easy peasy, and it feels good to know I won’t be eating out or skipping any lunches this week!

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And to top off a seriously perfect day…we arrived at the dodgeball gym only to be greeted by FREE BEER. The gym is located in a German cultural center and they had leftovers from a fundraiser. Twist my arm, why don’t ya.

I felt so energized, healthy and productive on Sunday that it really put me in a perfect place to start the week off right. I had 3 good meals yesterday thanks to meal prepping (OK, and the fact that Yvette hosted ladies Dance Central night and made spaghetti 😉 ), and I woke up bright and early for a quick work out at my new gym this morning before work. Happy body = Happy Katie!

What are your favorite ways to treat yourself?

How do you get back on track after days/weeks/months of slackin’ off?

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Treat Yourself Tuesday

It’s time to TREAT YO SELVES, friends!

Treat-Yourself-Tuesday-BadgeEvery Tuesday, my dear friend Becky over at Olives n’ Wine hosts a linkup encouraging bloggers to share in which ways – big or small – they have treated themselves over the past week. I love this idea and think everyone should find at least one way to treat themselves each week!

As I mentioned yesterday, tomorrow is my first day of work. As you can imagine, I’ve been taking advantage of my last days of “freedom”, aka too much free time on my hands.

I started last night by spending some time catching up on all the TV shows that are back this month- New Girl, How I Met Your Mother (OMG, does everyone else love the Mother as much as I do?! I have such a girl crush. Can’t wait for them to meet!), Girls (ugh the premieres were so so good! I laughed out loud too much!), and I got through almost half of the Downton Abbey premiere before I got kinda bored and went to bed…oops. Haha. I normally love it, I think I was just in the mood for comedies last night, so I wasn’t feeling Lady Mary’s doom and gloom.

I set out to make today equal parts productive AND treat yo self worthy. I woke up bright and early (I’ve been going to bed and waking up early lately to get back into my routine!) and did my weekly 3 mile run. It’s always strange to go from my long run on Saturdays to only 3 miles on Tuesdays.. But I know it’s important not to overdo it! Plus, I have 5 miles to look forward to on Thursday morning 😉

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It was super chilly when I went, but check out the high temp today.. 71 degrees?! Isn’t this January?! Not great news for that drought California is experiencing right now..

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Next up was a movie date with myself! I actually did this for my own version of a Treat Yourself day back in the day…I decided since American Hustle was playing downtown and I’ve been wanting to see it, I’d take advantage of the opportunity while I still had some free time! It was SO good. Amy Adams was phenomenal.. Actually, the whole cast was!

Afterward, I made the mistake of walking past Express…

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I know I may be on a budget.. But I have been eying this LBD (little black dress) for over a month! I tried it on twice, and put it back twice, because of the $80 price tag… When I spotted it today, there was 1 left, it was in MY SIZE, and it was only $30. It was meant to be. #treatyoself #amen

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I also ended up with this tank and this sweater. They were both on sale for half off the sale price! I couldn’t resist.

Speaking of shopping..

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Did anyone else check out Target’s C9 sale last week? Love that stuff! I pretty much anticipate only wearing workout clothes and work clothes for the next…forever 😛 Seriously. That’s all I wear.

In sum: TV shows, running, the movies, and shopping…Definitely sounds like a successful Treat Yourself Tuesday to me!!

What TV shows are you loving right now? I love all the ones I mentioned, but my all-time fave is Mad Men.

Last great movie you saw in theaters?

Treat Yourself Tuesday: Running Edition

It’s time to TREAT YO SELVES, friends!

Treat-Yourself-Tuesday-BadgeEvery Tuesday, my dear friend Becky over at Olives n’ Wine hosts a linkup encouraging bloggers to share in what ways – big or small – they have treated themselves over the past week. I love this idea and think everyone should find at least one way to treat themselves each week!

As I’ve mentioned before, my favorite way to reward myself after a race is by going and getting a pedicure. What’s better than getting a leg massage after running 6.2 miles… amirite?

Well, since I had to go straight to my parents’ house and help start Thanksgiving dinner after my 10K on Turkey Day, I finally found some time to treat myself to a post-race pedi on Friday.

IMG_2553It was much needed, especially with how much I’ve been running lately! I am in desperate need of a new pair of running shoes (hint hint, Christmas present idea!) and my feet have been pretty wrecked.

Some other ways I’ve been treating myself:

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I participated in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap this year and have been SO impressed by all 3 boxes of cookies I received! My measly cookies seemed so lame in comparison…no worries, I have drowned my cookie-lameness sorrows by eating, um, pretty much every single cookie that I’ve been sent. That’s 36 cookies in about a month. No wonder I’ve gained like 7 pounds…

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I also treated myself to one of my favorite Friday night rituals- a cozy night in with some wine, cheese, crackers and my iPad! I watched NBC’s The Sound of Music Live with Carrie Underwood. Har har. I know people really ragged on Carrie’s performance, but… terrible acting aside, I think she’s amazing. Lovable, beautiful, great voice, great legs (lol 😉 )… And I will never turn down an opportunity to watch The Sound of Music and sing along!

Now…I do love cookies, and it’s no secret I love wine. But I’ve definitely felt like I’ve been overindulging at times lately. What good is it running 3x per week (with the occasional living room ‘weight lifting’ workout) if it just gets canceled out each weekend? I don’t think that’s the best way to treat your body. Especially if you claim to be a healthy living blogger.

In the past year or so, there has definitely been a shift in my blog away from recipes and more toward a log of my workouts and running. Of course, I do still post recipes from time to time (Gorgonzola Turkey Burgers, anyone??) but, as my mom has pointed out several times, “All you talk about is running these days!”

I like to use this blog to keep myself accountable for fitness goals. Because if I announce on the Internet that I’m going to run a 5K this year, and that I’m going to run 25 miles in a month…that means I have to do it, right?

Welp…today is one of those days.

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YEAH. THAT HAPPENED.

I had been on the fence about this decision since my Thanksgiving 10k, but what really did it was attending the California International Marathon this weekend:

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I went for a jog along the last mile or two of the race, and it was extremely inspiring to see all the different kinds of people – different sizes, shapes, age groups – finishing the marathon! It was 20-35 degrees for most of the race as well, which made it all the more impressive. I even saw a 74 year old man finish in less than 4 hours and 30 minutes. Right after that, I texted all my friends who I had told I was thinking about signing up for the half:

textSidenote: I overslept on Sunday morning, so I didn’t get to see her fiancé cross the finish line, but I was super excited to FINALLY meet Erica from Coffee & Quinoa this weekend and celebrate Nate’s 6th marathon with the two of them!

Anyway, I am very excited, but also nervous, to be undergoing this challenge. I am luckily in the best running shape I’ve ever been in, which puts me in a good spot as far as training goes. I think creating a safe training plan is key in treating my body right and making sure it doesn’t rebel against me throughout this process!

I made myself a training plan based on Hal Higdon’s Novice 2 Half Marathon training plan. Instead of running 4x per week and doing cross training on Sunday, I will be running 3x per week, doing upper body weight lifting once, and my “cross training” on Sundays will consist of dodgeball 😉 I also was a little leery of increasing my long run by a whole mile every weekend, so I am only increasing by .75 miles most weeks. However, depending on whether I actually do a 5k and 10k race along the way, I may change that.

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I actually am already on week 2 of the plan, so I’m 1 week ahead of schedule. This extra week is to allow myself at least 1 week to get sick at some point this winter…it’s inevitable! I also gave myself the week of President’s Day weekend off, because I might be traveling at some point that weekend 🙂

So that’s my big news! I hope you all stick with me to follow along while I train for this race. In March 2013, I ran my first 5K…and in March 2014, I am now signed up to run my first Half Marathon. What a difference a year makes. I am scared, and I actually think there might be a screw loose in my head for wanting to do this to my body…but it’s on the Internet now, so there’s no turning back!!!

How have you been treating yourself this holiday season?

HALF MARATHONERS: Tips and training advice please!!

Treat Yourself Tuesday – Birthday Edition

Today I am again linking up with Becky’s Treat Yourself Tuesday party 🙂

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Treat Yourself Tuesday is all about doing something nice for yourself. Last time I linked up, I talked about how my Saturday routine is my ultimate me-time, and about how I always treat myself to a pedicure after a big race. Today, I’m kind of on a different wavelength. Today I turn 25 years old, and all I can think is:

For the past few months, I have actually been deep in the midst of what I’ve been calling my quarter life crisis. For me, my “crisis” has manifested itself in the form of dissatisfaction with several big aspects of my life.

Some people may be surprised to hear this, as I am generally a pretty happy and positive person. I am often smiling and would like to think I don’t complain much. This is of course not including all of my injuries...I complained quite a bit about both of my casts, as you guys probably noticed 🙂

As I may have mentioned before, I first started this blog in the fall of 2010 as a space to explore my status as a job-seeking post-grad post-recession Millennial who was pissed off that my college experience didn’t spit me out right into the workforce, working my perfect dream job in New York or San Francisco. You can actually see my very first entry in my blog when it was in that form here.

Since then, I have settled for a lot of things. I settled for an internship (which actually ended up being great), which eventually led to me settling for the first job I was offered. I was in a serious relationship for the first time – we were together for nearly 2 years, but looking back I can see that I was unhappy for much of it towards the end. I still live in the city I swore I would never come back to after college.

Soooooo you can see why I consider myself to be having a quarter life crisis.

However…This morning, I woke up early and took a little bit of time to sit on my balcony wearing my favorite over-worn UCSB sweatshirt in the brisk fall air and think about life. (sidenote: WHO AM I?!)

And you know what first came to mind?

My friends are amazing. I can’t believe how much fun we all had at my party. Plus it’s 7:30am and I’ve already gotten 5 birthday texts!

The weather is perfect today. A nice cool morning leading to an 80 degree afternoon (my ideal temperature!).

I love my blends! Who knew starting a blog would lead me to finding such great friends who would become IRL friends too?!

It was really nice to be able to sit and think and really just be happy about so many things. I think my outlook started to turn around in June when I ended my relationship and began to think about how to get myself out of my rut. I decided, maybe selfishly, that I would be putting myself first from now on.

Since then, whenever I come up with a decision to make, or two diverging paths to choose from, I only ask myself one question: what will make me happy? What will get me what I want in life, or where I want to be? No more settling.

I’ve always been a proponent of the idea that you’re in control of your own happiness. For me, I have learned to cultivate happiness in several ways (I think this is where we can tie in the treat yourself theme 🙂 )

– fun with friends

I have gotten so much enjoyment out of being social these past few months. Staying out at the dodgeball bar till close – because why not? – may lead to a not so fun morning, but the memories of fun weekends are often what get me through rough weeks. To know that I’m taking advantage of my youth gives me deep satisfaction.

– fitness

Feeling good about yourself is only partly mental. Exercising about 3 times per week makes me feel good physically and emotionally as well. For the past year, I have been able to look at myself in the mirror and feel good about what I see. That’s something that rarely happened in the first two decades of my life. Plus, I’ve gotta cancel out the aforementioned fun somehow, right? 🙂

– me time

I think self reflection and time alone is also important to your overall well-being. I love my Saturday morning run + farmer’s market routine because it’s something that I can count on every week to lift my spirits. I usually have at least one evening a week alone in my apartment as well, in which I always take my time relaxing and making dinner, usually with some music or a glass of wine. Finding ways to unwind (blogging counts!) is just as important as finding ways to let loose.

– family

Staying in contact with those who have known me the longest is a huge comfort in my life. Whether it be my true family, or friends I’ve known long enough to be family, I value their presence in my life. I listen to their advice, and know they have my best interests at heart.

– do unto others

I know I said that this is about how to make yourself happy, but I believe if you treat others the way that you want to be treated, you will not only be helping them, but reinforcing your own self-respect in the process.

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Sorry to get all hippy dippy emotional on you guys. This is one of my last big birthdays to look forward to, and at such a strange place in my life I found it only necessary to step back and reflect. Hope your weeks are off to a great start! Now if you’d excuse me, I’m going to go treat myself to a banh mi for birthday lunch!!

What things make you truly most happy in life?

Have you experienced a quarter-life crisis?