Thursday, July 30, 2009

Might have killed my arms...

This morning I decided to go to the first spinning class in awhile. It was a different class than I've ever been to before, but I decided to go because it was only 30 minutes (yup, I admit I'm a gym class slacker). I got to the gym a bit early so I started to do some of the great arm exercises you guys have been recommending. I did probably 15 minutes of all arm weights which is a huge amount of me since I rarely work my arms. Then I get to spinning and the instructor hands me a resistance band. Immediately I think uh oh. Uh oh was right...we did arm work almost the entire time (with spinning). It was great, except for I think it might have been a bit much for my arms. Tomorrow is parent conferences at my summer job so I am really looking forward to feeling extreme soreness while I am trying to explain the progress of my kids this summer, haha- oh well it will distract me at least. After tomorrow I am technically done with summer work, wooo! I still have a lot of private tutoring to do, but I will be taking a full week off in two weeks to spend some time at the Cape and go to 2 weddings :) Anyway, I will be without the internet this weekend in NH, so I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend and I'll catch up with you on Monday!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Coming out of my Food and Exercise Ruts

As I have mentioned before, I am in a major food rut now. I am even not loving oatmeal which is usually my favorite meal of the day. It might have something to do with how hot it's been- steaming oatmeal just doesn't have the same appeal. So today I woke up and had an english muffin with almond butter and some sliced apple. I thought I'd be starving by snack time (yes, I still eat like a five year old even in the summer) but I was not much more hungry than usual :) Then, after work today I did a little Trader Joe's trip in hopes of getting something delicious for dinner. I'd say I was pretty successful!
I got "rice sticks"- which is basically rice pasta, zucchini, chicken and a sauce I had never tried before called Island Soyaki. I cooked the chicken out on the grill and then sauteed it in the sauce. The rice sticks were cooked exactly like pasta, but a bit quicker. I mixed it all together in one of my favorite bowls. It didn't look so pretty, but the new sauce made it taste completely different than my usual food, just what I was looking for!
I highly recommend that Island Soyaki sauce for those of you that are fortunate enough to have a Trader Joe's near you.

I also hoped on my bike for the first time since the triathlon today. I have been having trouble motivating myself to do much of anything since the triathlon but I know I need to get back into it. I did some invitations for one of my friend's shower so I decided to bike to the mailbox about 2.5 miles away to send them out. I know a 5 mile bike ride is nothing to write home about, but I really want to get back in a biking routine because I'd really like to do a 30 mile bike ride through Boston at the end of September. I also have to decide I want to keep my gym membership. I joined the YMCA near my house in May because I needed a pool to train in. I did a student summer membership, so my membership is up very soon. I think for now I probably will not renew, but I am thinking if I still can't run in the winter, walking on the treadmill is not going to cut it every day! I wish gym memberships would just be cheaper.

Also on the note of exercise, I am trying to work on arm toning. However, I have never had a good routine for arms with free weights. The best I ever did with my arms was when I was doing Jillian's 30 day shred. However, Jillian loves squats and jumping- neither of which are good for my knee- so unless I want to spend 20 minutes doing only half of the actual work out, the shred is out for me right now. Does anyone have a good arm routine? I'd love to do 10-15 minutes 3-4 times a week. Any ideas would be appreciated.

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Good Side of Weddings

So I'll be honest. I've been TRULY hating weddings lately. Mainly my own because I hate planning it. It's just not my thing, and yet it takes over my time. I enjoy doing things for other people's weddings more because I know I am helping them/making them happy. But even then...I'd rather do something else for them haha.

However, I went to a beautiful wedding this weekend that (probably temporarily) restored my love for weddings. My friend from work got married and she was officially the first of MY friends to get married (we have been to Eric's buds and family weddings, but none of my friends). However, with 4 of my best friends getting married in the next year, I better get ready! Here is a picture of me with other work friends and the bride :)
Since I share a classroom door with Melanie (the bride) I can tell you that during her 2 year engagement, there have been a lot of complaints about how much she hated wedding planning. But I could tell on Saturday night that she was thinking it was all worth it because she was that happy. So, hopefully that will be me too. Plus I love her husband (now). They were high school sweethearts and according to the speeches at the wedding, basically crushing on each other since fifth grade...haha. They are the type of people who seem really different, but somehow just work together really well. I've thought this about them many times before, but when I was taking the shuttle home from the wedding on Saturday night the guy behind us (probably 60 or so) said, and I quote, "I have never met two people more perfect for each other than them." I thought that was pretty impressive, considering that this guy must have met a LOT of couples in his life!!!

So maybe, I won't complain about weddings for a few days (complete and total lie, I have complained since then haha). Also, I acquired a beautiful new centerpiece for my kitchen table. Eric and I won the "been married the longest at our table" award and got take home the flowers. And yes, we are aware we are not married but everyone else at the table was not even engaged, so we won. I love these flowers so much.
You will definitely see those beautiful fushia flowers reappearing in my centerpieces. Plus, this wedding of two seemingly opposite high school sweethearts reminded me of the excitement for my best friend's wedding in 2 weeks in 2 days (did I scare you a little their Katie?). I have been working hard on my Maid of Honor speech and I actually like where it is going right now. I also realized on Saturday that all of the guests stand up during the maid of honor and best man's speech so I better keep it short haha. I know Katie's wedding (and the wedding we have the weekend before) will continue to keep me optimistic and happy about weddings, and if not...there is always my new favorite drink:
And how did the Cosmo become my new favorite drink? I'm waiting in line at the bar and the girl in front of us orders a Cosmo. I turn to Eric and say, "that's one thing that can't suck me in even though it's pink, a Cosmo." As soon as the words are out of my mouth I wonder why a Cosmo can't suck me in and then before I have barely put a period on the end of my sentence I say, "you know what? I think I'll get one!" These irrational pink driven statements and decisions by me do not shock Eric any more. When it comes to me, there is really nothing pink that I will not enjoy. It's kind of weird, I admit it.

Do you like weddings? What is your favorite part? Least favorite?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

My First Ever Blog Award, wooo!!!

I am very excited that Katie from Sneaker Teacher so nicely gave me my first ever blog award. It's a special honor because I absolutely love her blog. I really thought before I started my blog if I could incorporate teaching the little ones into mine and I decided I didn't think I could. She has successfully blended teaching with her fitness stuff to make an awesome blog to read. Thank you SO much Katie! If you do not read her blog already, I highly recommend you check it out, especially as she writes about her new adventures in Germany! Now I have to pass the award on to 15 blogs, whew! Here I go...

She Did Whatttt?
Runs and Rests
Live, Love and Peanut Butter
Live, Listen, Cook
The Candid RD
Mission to a(nother) Marathon
CAUTION: Redhead Running
Through Green Eyes
Will Run For Wine
Chasing the Kenyans
Operation Pink Bikini
Mel Tries to Run
Will Run For Fun
Travel Eat Live
Dare to Tri

I know there are tons of other blogs that I absolutely love, so maybe next time they will let me pick 30! This must be why I spend so much time reading blogs huh? Thanks again Katie! If I gave you a Lovely Blog Award, be sure to pass it on to 15 people and let them know you gave it to them :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Kelly and Eric's Night of Invisability

Tonight Eric and I had the pleasure of being part of a comedy show. Here is how it went down.

It all begins at 4:30 when Eric and I decide we have no food in the house and we want to go out to dinner somewhere we don't go often. We finally settle on Vinny Testas, an Italian chain restaurant. I haven't been there in so long and I love it. At about 5:05, we stroll into the restaurant and sit down. After about ten minutes no one has come over, which we think is a little strange but we are chatting. We do notice that we are 1 of 3 groups in the whole restaurant, there are many more waiters than their are customers. At about 5:10 the bartender comes over and tells us that they are not ignoring us but they had to get some more vodka. I am slightly confused by this because #1- I did not order vodka, and even if MY waiter is getting vodka for someone else, can't someone else get me a drink because like I said there are more waiters than customers. But that's fine. At about 5:15 someone random brings us bread. We are happy, until we realize we still have no drinks or napkins (which we proceed to steal from a nearby table). At 5:17 I notice several bottles of vodka have appeared at the bar, but still no waiter. The two waiters that are actually working (serving the two groups in the restaurant besides us) continue to schmooze with their customers. The woman tries to get a little 5 year old to talk to her, but he wants nothing to do with her. "I'll TALK TO YOU! TALK TO ME!" I think. At 5:26 Eric says we will give it 5 minutes and then we will leave. We begin to discuss other possibilities in the area, but really just want to be served. Annoying girl waitress comes back and tries to talk to the 5 year old again about how he ate too much bread and now won't have room for his meal. He is thinking "You are not my mom! Go away" but she continues to talk to him. She tells him how she used to not talk to adults when she was little either. I try to get her attention with my eyes but she is too focused on the boy who hates her. At 5:30 I start to laugh because I am sure I am getting punked. The waiters who had no customers continue to stand in a group, talking and laughing. I swear they are looking at us but doing nothing...I start to debate which one will tell us we are being punked. At 5:32 Eric and I are daring each other to walk out. We are not confrontational people and we never LEAVE somewhere, but c'mon. At 5:35 I stand up first and we leave. No one even notices, even though there are still only 2 other groups in the restaurant. On the way out I tell one of the waiters we are leaving because no one served us. He stares at us dumbly and asks if he should take our order now. Um NO.
At 5:37 we walk into a nearby Japanese restaurant where all the ladies love us, we receive water by 5:38 and our order is taken at 5:40. I'm sorry, is the economy so awesome right now that you can afford to lose customers for no reason?
So weird.
Also, I went for a 5 minutes run, 5 minutes walk on the treadmill today. My knee hurts now. I guess it's not better after all. I don't like pointless injuries. Now if only I can find a dress long enough that I can wear my knee strap to a wedding on Saturday night...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Race Addiction

My name is Kelly and I am becoming a race addict.

Now, in my defense, my summer job allows me a lot more time to think about random things than teaching a class of 20 kindergartners does. However, I have been nonstop plotting the next race I can do. I have also been considering what kind of bulletin board I can buy to put in my "gym" room to keep all of my numbers and other race souvenirs. During any possible break I have I had been engaging in frantic googling hoping to somehow find a race I want to do, somewhere nearby, on a weekend that does not already involve one of my friend's weddings, bachelorette parties or bridal showers. I love my friends, and I am so happy that many of them have found fabulous guys to spend the rest of their lives with but WEDDINGS ARE TAKING OVER MY LIFE!!! As a result, there are only one or two weekends where I am actually available to do a race and of course there seems to be nothing offered those weekends. Boo. I think I will end up doing at least 1 or 2 5K's- I can picture myself doing one of those and still dancing the night away...but another triathlon probably not. Of course this has not stopped me from constant googling in hopes that I will find something I have not found before.

Some 5K's I am considering:
- Dennis Chamber Labor Day 5k- September 7th
- North Suburban YMCA 5k- September 26th
- Doug Flutie 5k for Autism- October 4th

I got the okay from my physical therapist today to do a 20 minute work out that includes 5 minutes jogging/5 minutes walking and then repeat. She said to see how that feels and I can go up from there. Considering my knee heroically made it through a triathlon the other day (which I decided to NOT mention to my PT haha), I am guessing it won't mind 10 minutes of jogging. But I'll take it slow just in case. Especially because my insurance officially stops covering my physical therapy at the end of next week. I'm bummed about that in some ways because my knee JUST started to feel better so I'd like to have the option of going for a little while longer. However, I also feel like PT has somewhat taken over my life and I am looking forward to getting that 4 hours of my life per week back. Hopefully if I am really nice to my knee and keep up all the exercises and stretching, it will be nice to me back.

On a totally different note I am in a MAJOR food rut. I literally have no idea what to eat. I am sick of EVERYTHING I eat. Even my morning oatmeal that I used to look forward to so much is boring me so much!!! I really need some new ideas but it's so hard to find things that my stomach is okay with. I am really wanting to try some Japanese restaurants at home since they are usually delicious and my stomach seems okay with most Japanese food. However, I am always so intimidated by the recipes for Japanese cooking. The ingredients list is SO long and it's hard to find all the ingredients. I like quick preparations and like 6-7 ingredients, TOPS. I know, I admit it, I am more of a surivival cook than a cook who enjoys it. If anyone has any great ideas for EASY Japanese recipes, please let me know. I'd be willing to do low fat Chinese or non-spicy Thai as well. I love Asian food :) I am also wanting to try "tempeh" which I have read about on many blogs, but do not know where to get it, or what in the world to do with it. So, please help!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Official Triathlon Results

Today we got our official results with overall time and specific times for each leg.

Overall Time: 1:15:56
Overall Rank: 391/598

Swim: 7:59
Rank: 206

Bike: 36:56
Rank: 370

Run: 31:00
Rank: 452

Overall I am really happy with my times, especially since my main goal was to FINISH!

My Thoughts on Swimming: Well I can't believe I'm saying this but apparently swimming was my strength. This is pretty amazing considering I was most worried about this from the beginning and I don't have any kind of history of being good at swimming. I was on a really wimpy swim team when I was younger and I don't think I came in anything other than last. Not that a rank of 206 is winning haha, but the fact that it is my strength at all is impressive to me. Now I don't feel too bad about those years that I taught swimming, maybe I really did know what I was talking about (Kelly starts to get cocky).

My Thoughts on Biking: Biking was my favorite part of this race. I love my bike and I saw this as sort of my rest time, time to drink water etc. I have had a bit of a love/hate relationship with biking throughout this training, but during the race I loved biking. I also was thanking my giant hill that I have to climb on my way home every day because those hills during the race didn't seem so bad :) I think I could've gone faster in the biking section (perhaps I shouldn't view it as rest time anymore?), so that can be a goal for next time. One of my biggest problems with biking is the fact that I knew I had to run after, so I didn't want to push it TOO bad. Hopefully when I am better trained for the running section I'll be less nervous to push it on biking.

My Thoughts on Running: Obviously running was my weakness, but considering that I had not trained for this part at ALL I'm not too sad about 31 minutes. That's only a little over 2 minutes longer than my 5k when I WAS trained AND I had not biked and swam right before. Although I'll love to improve on my time in a future triathlon, more importantly I'd like to improve on how I feel during the running part because on Sunday I was really dying. I'll like to HAPPILY make it through a running section next time. That might be asking a lot, but a girl can hope.

It would be fun to improve my overall rank too since 391 is not that impressive, especially to my little kiddos at work who asked me if I "won" the race haha. I didn't know how to explain to them that for me the accomplishment was in making it across the finish line haha. It's fun to compete but the real success is in knowing that I can do something I didn't know if I could do before. Plus, I was at the doctor today for a physical and I had never met this doctor before. When we were discussing how I eat, how often I work out etc she said that I look like someone who loves to work out. I'll take that as a compliment :) I don't know if 5 am Kelly would agree with that statement but I'll take what I can get.

I'd love to write more but unfortunately I have to go meet with a wedding videographer tonight. If you are not already planning a wedding now, but might think about it in the future- I highly recommend eloping! Planning a wedding is so much work and there is really not a lot about it that I actually enjoy. My second piece of advice is to space your wedding out far away from your friends. Being it other people's weddings is time consuming too- I am pretty sure I am on a first name basis with wedding paper divas an invitation company, who I actually recommend if you ignore my previous advice and decide to plan a wedding or bridal shower for someone. I hope everyone is having a great week.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Officially a Sprint Triathlete!


1/3 mile SWIM

9 mile BIKE

3.1 RUN

I’m sure of exact time yet because I was in the second wave to leave for the swim, and I’m not sure exactly how much time was in between waves, but my time was approximately 1 hour 15 minutes!!!!


Our triathlon journey began last night when we made the long trek down Rt. 28 to Falmouth to pick up our race stuff. They gave us lots of free goodies and of course all of our numbers and things we need for today. Caroline was number 77 and I was 127! Lucky 7’s I guess! Caroline was not thrilled to hear she’d be starting with the ellites (and the under 24 age bracket). I missed that by only a year but I started in the second wave. I got all my stuff ready before I went to bed:

Today we woke up bright and early at 5 am. I actually slept until my alarm but I slept horrible last night. I had all sorts of ridiculous dreams about being disqualified because I was too late (which is weird because that was the least of my actual concerns with the possibility of drowning or permanently killing my knee!)

We packed up the truck and Eric so nicely drove us to Falmouth even though he is NOT a morning person! When we got there, the only part of me that looked ready for a triathlon was the number on my arm.

I went to the bathroom a thousand times and met a really nice girl who was also a first timer. Caroline, my fantastic hairdresser, did my hair in braids :)

Then, Caroline and I walked down the beach to get ready to swim. I was feeling a lot more confident about the swim section because the water was SO nice and calm!!! (Dear God- Thank you for that!). The guy talking on the loudspeaker was making jokes which I found amusing even though I was SO nervous. Caroline started and then I started a few minutes later. Here we go!!!

The swim was unbelievable, it went SO well. I was really worried about swimming in the open water because I couldn't put my hands on the wall in between to take a breath. However, I was happy I didn't touch the wall, I think the time went much faster. I was able to swim freestyle the whole time too, except when I was kicked a few times and I just picked my head up to move away from the kicking. Good thing that everything doesn't hurt as bad in the water :) I was PUMPED after swimming.

Transition #1: This was the transition where I needed to remember sunglasses, knee straps, and helmet but it went pretty quick too. I even decided last minute to grab my half of a banana I had stuffed in my backpack after I put the other half in my oatmeal for breakfast. I figured I'd rather eat before the bike than the run. I didn't do as good of a job as I would've hoped at getting the sand off my feet but I didn't really notice it until the run.

The bike was the part I was least concerned about. It is the area I was most prepared and I figured if I was tired I could always just cruise. There were a few unexpected hills, but as you guys know I live on a giant hill so it wasn't too bad. I even biked right by the lighthouse where my engagement photos were taken so that was a nice happy thought. I was in very good spirits during the bike ride. I was yelling to people in BC superfan shirts and thanking all the volunteers, haha. Anything to make the time go by :)

If you had asked me at this point if I would do a triathlon again in a few days, I would've absolutely agreed. I was having the best time. But, I was about to make what everyone says is the hardest transition, and I haven't ran (except 1.5 miles once last weekend) in 2 months.

Transition #2: All I had to remember at the second transition was to get rid of my bike and helmet and remember my running belt which had my number on it. It felt like I needed more so I asked Chris who took the picture below if I had everything. He gave me the okay and I was off!

Everything that I expected to go wrong during the run did not. My legs were okay with the transition, my knees were 100 percent fine (thank you pataella straps!) and I didn't even really get a side ache at all. However, what I did not anticipate was how unprepared cardiovascularly (is that a word?) I would be since I haven't run in so long. Swimming and biking never really make me out of breath like that (well swimming a little bit but not biking except up hills). I was out of breath within a couple of minutes and IT WAS SO HOT. Keep in mind the last time I was running was early May, and early May in Boston I was still wearing long sleeve shirts to run. My body was not ready for pounding sun. I felt really sick to my stomach so I had to walk about 3 times, which was a bummer. But I think that was actually better than having to walk because of my knee (which is a more permanent problem). I would've liked to be able to run the whole time, but it just was not going to happen. I was also pacing myself pretty bad when I was running (I should've brought my Garmin I think) so I was kind of sprinting and then having to walk, which probably isn't the best plan. But in the end I don't think I lost TOO much time during the run and still finished in a time I am proud of! Caroline finished right with one of those BC Superfans, wooo!

I finished a few minutes later. I was happy Caroline did not have to wait too long for me, I was picturing her starting ahead of me and then taking a nap by the time I actually finished haha. I was less than amused that we finished literally on the beach. It's hard enough to run on the beach normally, forget after a triathlon! Apparently some people fell at the end, so at least that wasn't me. The coolest part was when they announced my name and where I was from on the loudspeaker!

The clock says 1:18-55. Supposedly we were starting 3 minutes between each wave which would mean I finished in 1:15-55. We will see when the official scores come out. I'm interested to see how I did on each leg as well because I think I lost a lot during the run, but maybe not. Here and me and the sis at the end:

And me with my #1 fan :)

And me, Eric, Caroline and Chris. My parents were there too, but no pictures of them haha.

Overall, it was a ton of fun. I will definitely be doing more sprint triathlons in the future. But next time I will not hurt my knee and actually be able to train for the running part! It's funny how I told my PT that I was most confident about the running part (this was 2 months ago) so I didn't mind taking a few weeks off running. A few weeks turned into 2 months and then today I was definitely not so confident about running.

I hope everyone had an great weekend with some beautiful weather like we did! I'll probably be back tomorrow or the next day with more triathlon thoughts :)

Saturday, July 18, 2009


I've officially made it to the Cape and I am relaxation pre-triathlon mode! I am definitely concerned about my physical preparation for this race, which of course affects my mental preparation but I am just counting on adrenaline to push me through :) Tonight my sister and I are driving to Falmouth to pick up our race materials and check out the course a little bit. Then we are eating a yummy dinner and heading to bed early. I still have a few more errands to run today but mostly I am just going to relax. I was wishing this triathlon was on Saturday so I could get it over with but it's rainy and the water is rough so I'm glad it's tomorrow now!

Yesterday on the way down I stopped to check out my wedding site in the summer. When we booked it, it was the winter and it looked a lot different. They were setting up for a wedding and all the flowers make it look even more beautiful. Here are some pics:

I really hope I have this beautiful of a day for my wedding next July because if I do, it will be really gorgeous!

Last night, I went out with the fam to an amazing Japanese restaurant called Inaho. If you are ever in Cape Cod, I highly recommend trying it. It's in Yarmouthport on 6A. You do need reservations but you can get them earlier that day if you are willing to go early :) Here are some beautiful pictures of the sushi.

I had shrimp dumplings and chicken teriyaki which did not look as fun, but did taste delicious. Actually the shrimp dumplings would probably make a good picture but I wanted to eat them, next time I promise one :)

I hope everyone has a great start to the weekend! I'll try to do a Pre-Race report tonight and definitely update you on how it goes tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Triathlon Checklist

4 days until the triathlon! I did a sad attempt at a bike/run today which consisted of a 3 mile bike, what should have been a 1 mile run (but turned into less than a 1/2 mile because my shin was hurting and I had a side ache, but my knee was fine haha), and then another 3 mile bike back. This kicked my butt way more than it should have and I can only hope that I'll be more alive on Sunday morning to do the whole triathlon and not have to walk the entire running part! So since I am not really physically or mentally ready I thought it would be good to be prepared with the STUFF I need. I have to pack tomorrow night to get to the Cape right after work on Friday, which means I need to have all my stuff set to go. Please let me know if I'm forgetting anything!

Things I Need For:

-foam roller
-bike pump

-Swim cap (do they give me one? I am going to bring mine just in case)

-water bottle
-knee straps

-running belt (to put number on)

-knee icer

I think that's all. Let me know if I am forgetting anything I may want. Also, I am wondering what all of your opinion is on whether or not I need gels to eat during the race. I am hoping it takes me less than 2 hours. I was thinking I would not need anything, so therefore I haven't tested things out to see how they do with my stomach. However, at the triathlon store and running store they were both like, oh no you need something! I was thinking about putting a peeled banana in a bag at the transition area and eating it quickly while biking. The last thing I need is a stomach ache. I am planning to eat oatmeal and apple in the morning before the race, it will be about 2 hours before I start that I eat. I could have a banana right before the race but I don't know about eating right before swimming. These are things I probably would've worked out better if I had known I was going to do this triathlon all along. Oh boy!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Seven Traits!

I was tagged by Anais to list seven traits about myself and then pass it on to 7 bloggers.
I am passing it on to:

And anyone else who feels like doing it :)

Seven Traits About Kelly

1. I have to steal from Anais, but I definitely have an obsessive personality. This is best demonstrated in my obsession with online message boards. When I first started teaching I will obsessed with, when my stomach starting bothering me I read boards about that, now I read wedding boards- haha. I am the same way with food, I eat more Cheerios, yogurt, almond butter, oatmeal and potatoes than the average person.

2. I can be very impatient. For example, if I hear about a book that is really good, I will go out RIGHT now and get it! When I have an idea, I want to implement it immediately. I try to wait, but I usually don't.

3. I am the opposite of procrastinator. Maybe it goes along with #2, but I want everything done and far in advance. This sounds like a good quality but sometimes it is really overwhelming when I am thinking about things that need to be done in 2 months, along with things that need to be done this week.

4. I love hand bags. At my parents house I used to have an entire closet basically dedicated to them. I've toned it down a bit, but I still like to get a new one every few months. Recently I have taken to borrowing them from my sister which is a great money saver since I'll obviously get sick of it soon and want a new one.

5. I'm a morning person. I love waking up early, getting a lot done and then being impressed with myself with all that I can accomplish before noon. This does not apply on weekdays when I have to wake up ridiculously early to go to work, then I don't love it- I just tolerate it.

6. I'm a townie in the same town I grew up in (never thought that would happen but here I am) but I justify it by being a travel freak. I love trips. I especially love planning them, but I also like going on them. I have to force myself to save money for anything other than trips.

7. I have a short attention span. I don't like to do anything for longer than 45 minutes to an hour at the most. This is why I really do not like movies very much (too long) and this is exactly the reason that I hate golf! I think the reason why I want to do a triathlon is because I like the idea of three different sports all in one. Teaching kindergarten also allows me to "switch gears" every 20 minutes or so. I'll do most anything for 45 minutes, but I'll do almost nothing for longer than that.

That's all for now. Looking forward to hearing your traits if you do it.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Pink Ice Cream and Honeymoon Plans

I'm getting back in the blogging grove, yay!
I took a trip to a famous ice cream spot in Cape Cod called Four Seas (anyone been there?). It's basically walking distance from my house but I tend to avoid it because it's always crazy. However, so many places have closed or stopped carrying good flavors so I tried it out the other day. I think I'll be going often because I was having a craving for mint chocolate chip and BAM it was pink! Obviously this made me love the delicious ice cream even more.
I will probably be going back here today on my way home. I am not going to leave anytime soon though because last I checked there was a 10 mile back up at the bridge. I have to work tomorrow obviously so eventually I have to go, but no time soon :)
I visited the Cape Cod YMCA this afternoon to do some swimming. It's a brand new facility and the pool is beautiful, however it drives me nuts that it does not open until 12 on a Sunday. No one works out before TWELVE? C'mon! I'm a morning person I like to get it done. However, today I had a great time there. I got my own lane and then a lady asked me to share. I was overly nice about letting her because I hate when people are mean to me (and I could care less if someone is in my lane). She said she'd try really hard not to bump me and I said it's okay if you do because I am doing a sprint tri next week and I need to get used to swimming with a lot of people. At this point, she told me that she was registrered for a sprint triathlon this summer but chickened out and couldn't do it. We got in a whole conversation about how she was nervous about the running part and she didn't want to finish last because she is walking (which is probably going to be me, but if I finish last at least I can blame it on my knee injury). I recommended the Couch to 5K plan to her and she said she was going to try it. She was so excited and ready to start entering herself in a bunch of sprint triathlons. I'm really glad I can convince people to do things I myself have not actually done yet, oh boy! I did a nice 30 laps, which is about 8 laps more than I will have to swim next week but I figured I should do some extra because obviously the ocean will be even harder. I'm counting on adrenaline to get me through the waves!

My other goal of this week besides finishing up training is figuring out where Eric and I should go on our honeymoon. We really want to do a honeymoon registry where people can get us parts of our honeymoon as presents so we need to figure out where we are going! I know some people find this tacky, but I decided to get over it because we already have a lot of stuff that we need and we love to travel. Besides, I wish my friends were doing this, I would love to buy them fun honeymoon stuff. We are debating between Italy, Hawaii and Australia, totally random I know. Here is my Pros and Cons list for all three. Usually when I explain to people how much trouble we are having deciding where to go they ask me what I want out of my honeymoon. So here it goes:
We want: gorgeous weather, a great mix of fun and relaxation, clean hotels, delicious food, and beautiful beaches :)

What do you guys think?

Italy (probably the Amalfi Coast, Rome, maybe Tuscany if time/budget allows)
(Me + Eric in Venice, July 2006)
• Beautiful
• Culture
• Delicious food (and usually not that expensive either)
• Quick plane ride (compared to other options)
• Lots to see and do

• We have both been to Italy before, together- only Rome and Venice though
• Different language (normally fine, but if we are already exhausted from a wedding it may just add stress)
• Food will most likely bother my stomach
• Euro is not going to help us out
• Will be very hot

(Random pic of Hawaii, since I've never been there!)
• Beautiful
• Polynesian culture
• Lots of Japanese food and seafood both of which my tummy likes
• Many fun activities to do- scuba diving, helicopter rides, volcano etc

• Expensive
• Long plane ride
• I can’t decide between all of the islands! Also I have a fear that the islands will be similar to the many Carribean Islands I have been to)

Australia (probably Sydney, Whitsunday Islands, Darwin…maybe some other places, possibly a stop in Fiji along the way)
(Me + my Australian BFF, don't mind the fact that I clearly gained a thousand pounds during my study abroad experience, December 2004)

• One of my favorite places in the world (I studied abroad there)
• Can do a lot of different things within one country- beach, water activities (scuba etc), and more touristy/city things
• Money is still a little in our favor
• One of those places you can really only go to if you have a lot of time, which we will next summer- may be once in a lifetime type of thing

• REALLY long plane ride
• It will be winter there next July (northern Australia should be okay, but Sydney will be cool)
• I have been there before, but Eric has not

Would love to hear everyone's opinions. I know I need to just make a decision because obviously I cannot go wrong all 3 places.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Open Water Attempt

It's finally like a normal Massachusetts summer and I am back in triathlon training mode. I got down the Cape yesterday and found a new way to enjoy PT exercises. Or should I say for the first time I actually didn't mind doing them. Here we go leg lifts on a beach towel!
The strap around my knee is my new best friend the knee strap that holds my pataella in place. I also have my nice five pound weights around my ankle. You can see them even better in this picture:
Haha, it totally looks like I am leading one of those crazy work out videos or something. Oh well it prepared me well for my triathlon training today.

This morning my mom and I went down to look at some bridesmaid dresses and they even forced me to try on a wedding gown. I really do NOT like wedding gowns. #1- I am not a fan of white, but I really don't like when people don't wear white because then I have no idea who the bride is haha. #2- I also am not a huge fan of long dresses, especially not ridiculously heavy ones. #3- I am going to have to pee during my wedding and I really don't know how that is going to work with these massive dresses on. I did enjoy trying on bridesmaid dresses though. Alfred Angelo has this AWESOME fushia color that I love. Of course the sample dress was eggplant, but I could see the fushia and I swear I am going to be wanting to wear my own bridesmaid dress if I end up ordering them. I'll give someone else the bridal gown, any takers?

Anyway, after the "fun" of dress trying I went to the beach to try my first open water swim. I know it looks beautiful but looks can be deceiving.

Well also, this picture was from a few weeks ago when the water was calm and beautiful. Today it was beautiful, but not calm. My mom even commented on how she hasn't seen it this rough in a long time. GREAT day for my first open water swim. I should start by saying I am a little afraid of the ocean. I love it and I've been scuba diving before, but I do have a small fear of it. Not really of big issues like sharks or rip tides, but more like jelly fish and other smaller issues. I rarely swim at the Cape because normally there is a nice breeze and I'm not that hot. But I forced myself to get in (and Eric was a fantastic sport and came in with me). It was a little chilly but I got used to it. I started swimming and the water was going in my goggles and my mouth and I started to panic and tell Eric FORGET IT I CAN'T DO IT! Fortunately, he is a calm (normal) person and talked me down from my minor panic attack. I kept trying to convince myself that next week was not going to be so rough and he was like "WHAT IF IT'S ROUGHER? NOW SWIM!" So I fixed my goggles, stopped trying to swim INTO the waves (which I do realize may not be an option next week) and things got better. I still doubt I came close to swim 1/3 of a mile but I got over the mental obstacle so that is what is important.

The second thing I did today was go for a walk/run. It was 3.32 miles total, and I ran about 1.7 miles of it. My knee seems to be okay with it AND I am happy that I was able to run 1.7 miles without any running for over a month. I know that doesn't sound like much but I could not even run 1.7 miles in February of this year so I thought I'd be back to my pre-running self with all this running rest. Apparently not though. I could've gone farther also but I did not want to push the knee, so I am happy. Hopefully I'll have some more productive triathlon training (with no over doing it!) this week and be ready for next Sunday. I hope everyone is having great weather and enjoying the weekend!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Mango Madness

Hi everyone. I know I'm slacking on the blog posting, but my summer job has been tough and having a little bit of extra time has made me feel like I need to be incredibly productive in all areas of life. So now I think I have a lot less time (funny how that works).

One of the only benefits of being diagnosed with IBS a little over two years ago was that it has gotten me into a lot of new foods. One of these foods is mango. It's not something I really ever thought about before, but it is one of the only fruits that has a lot of soluble fiber (the fiber my tummy likes) and so I began trying to eat it. I quickly found out that fresh mango was not for me. It was really tough to peel/cut and I read somewhere that the skin was poison which freaked me out (no idea if this is actually true of course). So I have been buying frozen mango at Trader Joe's for the past year. At first I was not quite sure how to use it, so I just mixed it with yogurt and enjoyed it. That was good, but then I started to be a bit more creative. I made a fantastic lunch mixture of rice, quinoa, black beans, carrots and mango. As per usual, I decided to eat that every day until I got sick of it. The past two nights I have tried some dinner with mango and here are the first results:

Fillet of sole, baked with mango slices on top...yum! Here is my whole dinner including baked potato fries and some carrots (also an excellent source of soluble fiber).

The next day I had some leftover sole, so I decided to mix it with more mango and some quinoa. I didn't even need any sauce, the mango added delicious sweetness, yum.

If you have never had mango, or haven't had it in awhile- give it a try. You'd be surprised by all the places you'll find to put it. I also make delicious smoothies with mango and banana, but I ran out of bananas so I haven't had one in a few days.

On a different note, I have continued to train for the triathlon in a low key sort of way. I know I said I am not going to do it, but I actually probably am- just very slowly and carefully. I am at the point now where I no longer mind if I am last, because it probably means I was taking good care of my knee. I think I'll be in a better place to take a long rest and deal with my knee after I complete this goal for myself. Given the fact that I ran on my knee for almost a month before I went to the doctor, I think running one more time will not kill it. Plus I am most likely going to walk the whole time since I haven't actually run in over a month now and I am not one of those people who can just bust out 3 miles without any training. So today I did 22 laps in the pool and an 8 mile bike ride. I'm going to continue to take it easy but also make sure I get some quality pool time in. I'm sure I'm going to regret not doing an open water swim before the tri, but I'm going to tell everyone to keep a CLOSE eye on me in the water to watch for drowning. Haha...not funny though. Tomorrow is Friday, yay!!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Lake Sunapee

Whew! I am finally back. Did everyone have a great 4th of July? (if you celebrate it of course).
I had a fabulous long weekend.

I went up to my family's place at Lake Sunapee. The story behind this place in short: my Dad's family had a summer house on Lake Sunapee in NH when he was younger. However, when the 8 children in his family grew up, one house was not quite big enough for all of them. Right before I was born, they decided to buy a bunch of small cottages so we could all be up at the same time. I am so happy they did, because it meant that I basically grew up with all my cousins in the summer and since there are 21 of us, that never could've happened in 1 house! You can sort of see our "complex" in the background of this picture of me and Eric.
A huge chunk of my childhood memories were made here and one of the biggest is the 4th of July parade. As a kid, me and my cousins would dress up in crazy red, white and blue clothes and ride in my grandfather's convertible or my uncle's truck. We dressed up like Betsy Ross some years, and others we were Miss Americas and there were always lots of red, white and blue hats, bathing suits and anything else we could get our hands on. Since I have not been up to Sunapee for the past few 4th of July's I decided to wake up early to see the second generation of cousins (as I like to call them, really they are just my cousins but 15-20 years younger than me) march in the parade. Here is a picture of their awesome costumes:
And a picture of all of us (and by all of us I don't mean all of my cousins, just the ones who were willing to get up early enough to watch this haha) with my grandmother:
Just for fun, here is a picture of me and my cousins when we were little, still at Sunapee. This picture is NINETEEN years old...
In case you couldn't tell by the insane curly hair, that would be me in the front left- with my cousins Kristen, Brian, Kate and my aunt Kim :)

Now that I am home, I have to get back to torturing children- oh sorry, I mean helping them learn to read. I had a second evaluation last night at PT, and she said I have gotten a lot stronger and more flexible, yay! Except it still has not helped my knee feel any better, but hopefully it eventually will. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Hi everyone. I know I already posted earlier today but I am back again because this weekend I’ll be going to my family’s house in New Hampshire where there is NO internet (yes, I will probably die and then somehow go to the library and find internet haha). I just wanted to post a few updates before I go.

Today I was tutoring a little boy I work with and he told me he had some test results for me in his back pack which was up the hill. I told him we’d finish a little early and I’d walk to his next class with him so he could give me the papers. After walking up a pretty minor hill, my knee was killing me again. That’s when I knew I really cannot do this triathlon. I’m very sad about it, but I really have no idea what is wrong with my knee. PT isn’t helping, resting isn’t helping, Advil isn’t helping, stretching and foam rolling aren’t helping. My PT is going to do a full reevaluation with me next week and then I am probably going back to my primary care doctor for a referral. I already made an appointment with an orthopedist but the first opening he had was for September, so I’m going to see if my doctor can get me in somewhere earlier. I just hope I do not need surgery, because I honestly do not think I could do it until December unless I got it in before school starts again in August. I know I have to do what’s best for me, but I can’t even write sub plans for as long as I might be out of commission. Plus I can’t imagine teaching with crutches! Hopefully it still is pataellafemoral and just really STUBBORN and that’s why it won’t go away. Maybe?

So, even though I cannot do the triathlon right now, I still hope to be able to do the Hyannis one in September, or at least train for some other race. I will continue to make the focus of this blog on fitness and healthy food, even if I am not specifically training for a race until the knee improves. I am not going to officially give up my spot in the triathlon until early next week so maybe a MIRACLE will occur over the weekend. Maybe?

Also on the note of surgery, one of my friends from work is having surgery this summer that she will be recovering from for 6 to 8 weeks. One of her friends is putting together a care package of stuff to do during that time and I want to contribute some items. Does anyone have any ideas?

I hope everyone has a great 4th of July weekend (or celebrates a late Canada Day for the Canadian readers!). Hopefully the Boston weather will stop being the WORST ever! Maybe?

Would You Work for Free?

I am officially sick of having a hurting knee and I want to RUN!!!!!!!!

While we are on the topic of things that I want, I also want it to stop raining and be summer!!!!

Okay, that's enough exclamation points for one post. Yesterday I was a great triathlon training girl, I swam in the morning and went on a bike ride with Ash in the afternoon. Yes, I would bike much more often if Ash lived near me. But I took her to the airport last night so no more Ash and Kel bike rides for awhile. Luckily I still have my sis to bike with me, because I basically have not biked alone in weeks and I'm pretty sure I have no motivation to do it.

Today I did not do any training because I had a crazy busy day with the kiddos. I did have PT though. One of the only things I like about PT (besides the fact that I do feel like I am building my leg muscles, which is nice) is that I now actually watch the news at night because it is on there. Today a very interesting story came up about one strategy that a failing school in Washington DC is using to try to help their students. They are paying their students for good behavior and good grades. WOW!!! As a teacher, I was IMMEDIATELY interested. But actually, anyone who is a parent, might become a parent, or cares about society at all should be interested.

At first thought the idea sounds CRAZY. We are going to pay kids to do what they are supposed to be doing? If you think about it though, I would not work for free- and yet we expect kids to do it all the time. If money was no factor to me, I would still do something productive with my day- maybe work part time or volunteer- but I would definitely not work the kind of crazy days I have now, and yet when I was a teenager my life was probably equally insane and I was receiving no extrinsic rewards at all.

This also brings up the moral question of whether or not you believe in giving children rewards at all or whether you believe kids should do the right thing because it's the right thing. Ideally, of course, kids would do the right thing because it's the right thing. But what if they don't? Here is how I see this:

Pros to Paying Kids: The fact of the matter is, there really are not a lot of rewards or consequences for kids right now. Usually when a child is incredibly rude and does something bad in my classroom I will inform the parents. Although the parents often claim to be shocked by their child's behavior, they also often blame other children in the class, the situation or some other external factor other than the child simply being rude. On top of that, most of these kids treat their parents the same way. Most parents do not want their child to be punished at school and there are only so many options about what to do anyways, particularly with older kids. If we had a reward that would really get kids motivated, it would benefit all students because most kids would be more motivated and therefore there would be less behavior problems that affect all children. Plus, this is being implemented right now at a very low performing school. Perhaps if we pay those kids, they could gain motivation and lead truly successful lives. The fact is, where you end up in life has a lot to do with choices you make at a very young age. Hopefully, your parents make many of those decisions for you, but of course in a lot of cases that does not happen.

Cons to Paying Kids: I think the major con here is what kind of society we are promoting and what we are teaching children if we begin paying them for doing the right thing at a young age. I also wonder if kids who already have all they need would not be motivated by this at all since young kids don't normally have a lot of bills to pay.

Overall, even though my pro list LOOKS longer, I think it's probably not a good long term solution for kids. What do you guys think?