Spring Break recap

Hello friends –

Sadly, I am writing this from dreary, chilly Boston and not sun-soaked LA. I had an amazing spring break, and am so, so sad that it is rapidly coming to an end! These last few days will have to be spent studying and picking up where I left off with various student organizations and *ahem* the gym.

How I feel about hitting the books again

How I feel about hitting the books again

I am now officially in training for my May 10k (the Newton 10k) and am hoping to beat my time on my last 10k, which was ages ago in October (the Tufts 10k for Women). Now that I have *some* sense of where I could possibly be come autumn, I may be able to start signing up for more races and events. In addition to my 10k coming up, I’m hoping to do a Tough Mudder with my friend Tom on June 1st – 2 days after my graduation! More on that when I figure out the details.

But before I spiral out of control talking about the scary thing that is the future, let me revisit the past. Spring break was incredible, as I mentioned in my last post. We all wanted to do an official spring break-y spring break before we graduated, and this was our last chance! Our days were spent relaxing in sun drinking cocktails and our nights were spent relaxing in the hot tub with wine. It was very relaxing and also very boozy… Hey, I’m 22, OK?! 😛

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On the least sunny day of our trip, we journeyed to Hollywood in order for me to have a spiritual experience. Yes, that means I would not leave until I found Britney’s star.

Hello, beautiful

Hello, beautiful

I also found out that Sophia Loren and I have the same size hands – odd, because I have pretty big, muscular hands for a lady. Either way, I was pretty thrilled to step into her stiletto prints, because she is my Italian sister and a rad body image icon for me personally. She is an endlessly sultry and gorgeous fellow Italian with dark hair, light eyes, and olive-y skin with a curvy and airbrush-free body.

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Loren killin’ it in “Ieri, Oggi, e Domani”

 

Women like Loren (Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian, Beyoncé, Mindy Kaling, and even Britney Spears among them!) inspire me because they have bodies, however perfect or airbrushed in various contexts, that are more relatable to me than to those of extremely thin, largely curveless and often Northern European bodies. Those bodies are also beautiful, but they are not my own. BASICALLY that was a really long way of saying that I was just as happy as I look in this photo!

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The view directly above

The view directly above at Hollywood Bouvelard’s Chinese Theater

I also got in plenty of snacks – don’t you worry! – during my trip. One of the most amazing things I ate? A giant banana split cookie (yes, you read that right) with chocolate chips, banana, and strawberries at the Milk Jar, a milk-and-cookies place for adults. With a side of iced coffee (served in a mason jar because LA), I was practically jumping up and down at this ecstatic temporary return to childhood.

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The entire trip was incredible, but I think the best morning was by far the one I spent with the GF’s sister. We woke up early to catch a 7:30 AM hot yoga class at Modo Yoga – a celeb favorite that is mere minutes from her apartment. Man… I’ve done hot yoga before, but this was the hottest hot yoga I’ve ever done! The studio was bougie as anything, cheery and comfortable, and the actual practice room was expansive but purposefully airless. They were burning sage, which maybe made me feel like it was even hotter. I don’t think it would be an exaggeration to say I’d never sweat so much in my life. I regularly did hot yoga through high school, but this was next level hot. At the end of class, I collapsed into a puddle on my mat. After wiping ourselves down (yes, I was that drenched) we browsed the little showcase they had at the front of the store. She bought cute new yoga pants, I bought a sexy new water bottle for a price that took me by surprise. Oh well. It is beautiful and apparently holds 40 oz, and retains temperature like no other – the lady behind the counter claimed that ice would stay ice in it for 12+ hours. I really hope so, because lukewarm water makes me very grumpy.

The color is called "Açai Purple"... LOL. But actually I love it.

The color is called “Açai Purple”… LOL. But actually I love it.

After we made our purchases, we stepped over the the juice bar next door (hello, LA) to refuel post-practice. I’m recently re-inspired by juicing, so much so that I actually broke out my old juicer and starting shaking up some green drinks. I got a hearty, beet-based juice infused with lemongrass and ginger, among other things. Totally delicious and totally gorgeous.

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Back here in Boston, I am ready to make some of my own juices again! I went shopping yesterday, so I am armed with kale aplenty. In fact, tonight I plan to make kale chips to accompany my dinner with the GF.

Be still my heart!

Be still my heart!

After an awesome but totally crazy spring break, I am ready to kind of lay low for a few days until the craziness of school starts up again. I’m thinking getting back to the gym and running, plenty of yoga and foam rolling. That, and lots of green tea, kale, detoxing dandelion tea, and juices. And chia seeds. Sweet, sweet chia seeds. So good when you’re feeling icky post-travel.

In that spirit, I did some hatha yoga before bed last night. I’ll share the same, gentle 25- minute video I used from yogadownload.com via youtube with you so that you can enjoy the same nurturing sequence!

Peace, sweat and love,

G

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Spring Breaking

Greetings from California!

So much has happened in the past week, I can’t even…

First off, our double horse show weekend went well – our home show went smoothly and we even came in third out of over a dozen teams! Pretty good for multi-tasking, right?

Bonding with the horses at our home show!

Bonding with the horses at our home show!

After the insanity of the super long weekend and 4 AM wake-up times (so early, in fact, that Dunkin Donuts was not even open 😦 ), it was work work work straight up until spring break started on the 20th… A day that is coincidentally also my birthday! This spring break, the GF, a mutual friend and I are visiting the GF’s sister and her boyfriend in LA. So we boarded our 6 AM plane (*ugh*) and went off to sunny southern California after having endured 16 degree F weather in Boston. I’m telling you, when we saw those palm trees, we swooned. I cannot tell you how nice it is to finally soak up some vitamin D! I have been in desperate need of sunshine.

The roof of their apartment - Hollywood sign in the background, hot tub in the foreground.

The roof of their apartment – Hollywood sign in the background, hot tub in the foreground.

Also, right after we grabbed brunch after landing at LAX, I got a call from the Boston area. The woman on the other line identified herself and said she was calling from the Boston University School of Law. She was calling to let me know… That I was accepted to the class of 2017!!! I cannot even tell you how excited I was. I’ve been rejected from a lot of the other schools or wait-listed, so this was a much-needed confidence boost. More to discuss later! For now, I am just relieved that I am in somewhere – and BU Law is a great school, too.

In the meantime, I have been enjoying some serious sunshine, brunch, and cocktails with everyone. I am an East Coast girl at heart, but I am practically ready to convert and abandon my beloved New England altogether.

Soaking up the rays in Venice Beach.

Soaking up the rays in Venice Beach.

Selfies from one of our many brunch trips :)

Selfies from one of our many brunch trips 🙂

I'm biased, but I kind of think my girlfriend is celebrity-status gorgeous, isn't she?

I’m biased, but I kind of think my girlfriend is celebrity-status gorgeous, isn’t she?

A photo’s worth a thousand words, right?

I think we’re going to go on a hike tomorrow, so I will be sure to take more photos and update again soon! I’m also hoping to get a run or two in soon, as I want to start prepping for my mid-May 10k soon.

Peace, sweat and love,

G

Monday Updates (Mupdates?)

Hello!

In between doing laundry and my readings for tomorrow’s class, I decided to edit the “Races I’ve Run” page. Check for my review of the St. Pat’s 5k! How’s that for some speedy turnover?

I’m hoping to get a gym session in today, though I will not be running. Despite the fact that I now have awesome new shoes, I still never gave myself the time to properly heal, so I’m going to take at least a week off of running. My next race isn’t until May (I’ll be running the Newton 10k), and I won’t start training for it for another 2 weeks. I may or may not run another 5k in April – the Day One rape crisis center in Providence is holding one, and I would love to participate if possible. If I find the time I may very well sign up! It’s a cause I definitely care about, after all.

In the meantime I am going to be snuggling up to my new(ish) foam roller.

In the meantime I am going to be snuggling up to my new(ish) foam roller.

We’ll see how many posts I fit in this week – this weekend I definitely won’t be able to, because I have *blargh* a double horse show weekend. That means an equestrian competition on both Saturday AND Sunday, and the Sunday one is our home show. So that means that we’re going to be scrubbing and sweeping our little arms off making sure everything is perfect and organized. I love the ponies, but double horse show weekends are rough. Wish me lots of sleep and hot tea!

Me by the end of the weekend

Me by the end of the weekend

In other news, media featuring cats is a great way to communicate feelings.

Peace, sweat and love,

G

This Just In: St. Pat’s Race Pics!

Just as I finally finished up my last blog post only minutes ago, I checked my email to the delightful surprise that race photos were already up via RaceWire! Watermarks aside (honestly it’s not the worst watermark), these pictures totally capture my absolute and utter joy at making a new PR.

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An update to the “Races I’ve Run” page to include the St. Pat’s 5k coming soon!

Peace, sweat and love,

G

A Post from Cloud Nine

You guys. I have so much news. So much exciting news!

So, obviously, you have my Friday post announcing 2 big things: a Vagina Monologues -spinoff I helped organize, and my St. Pat’s 5k. Basically, what happened is that BOTH WERE AMAZING SUCCESSES. I’m so happy. I can’t even…! I’ve just been floating around this weekend.

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The Wellesley Monologues? Well, a picture is worth a thousand words, and I’ll let the crowd that showed speak for itself…

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The pub was PACKED – perhaps to the point of not meeting fire codes, whoops. Our cast was nothing short of incredible. They rocked it Friday night! The audience was laughing crying, and clapping throughout these amazing personal stories. It was the biggest middle finger ever to Eve Ensler – haha! The original script doesn’t even come close to the real, unfiltered stories of different people.

After this incredible success, we were all ecstatic. We raised more money than I had expected in this “experimental” year – $550 and counting – for the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center!

And then the next morning I had my first race of 2014 (“Wow, you never stop!” was a response from a cast member, which I took as a compliment 🙂 ). If you read my previous post and races I’ve run, you’ll know that my 5k PR is a 9’48″/mi, and that I really really wanted to hit 9’40″/mi, but would’ve been happy in the 9’50” range as well (my last 5k I just managed to break 10′).

Well… I ended up doing way better than I had imagined! I managed to run a 9’30″/mi 5k and came in under 30 minutes! Beyond excited. I really pushed myself during this race because I wanted to beat my PR, and all my work paid off – even with my stupid shin splints 🙂 I was just pumped to run in my beautiful  Providence (proud Rhode Islander right here!).

Guess which one is me? LOL so many dudes in green...

Guess which one is me? LOL so many dudes in green…

We ran past familiar streets starting at the gorgeous State House, past the Lithuanian Society, churches and Chinese restaurants of the South Side. People came out of their homes to watch and cheer us on – it felt so incredible to be running in my familiar city!

My ponytail is doing something serious right here - is it being magnetically drawn to the State House?

My ponytail is doing something serious right here – is it being magnetically drawn to the State House?

And as my first mile came to a close, my Nike+ announced that I had just run a 9’22” mile! I was relieved and thrilled. I pulled through, up hills and while weaving through crowds, and broke into a huge grin when I crossed the finish line with a solid 9’30” pace.

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Best of all, my adorable parents and girlfriend had made the trek out to see me race. Thanks to them, we have lots of sweaty photos of me!

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Because my mom is fantastic, she cooked lasagna for a sweet family dinner after the race. It was even more delicious than usual, and that’s saying a lot.

Rosemary -infused mushrooms and garlicky spinach lasagna with a light bechamel sauce <3

Rosemary -infused mushrooms and garlicky spinach lasagna with a light bechamel sauce ❤

So because I’ve obviously been dancing around to (my beautiful fashionable flawless cheekbone-having boyfriend) Pharrell’s “Happy”, here is a video made by Tunisian Star Wars fans to the song. Because, duh.

Peace, sweat and love,

G

(Trying to stay) Zen Friday

Hey sweets!

I am writing this totally excited and a little lottle bit nervous about the rapid succession events coming up in my life. My schedule right now is looking kind of crazy (remember how I hadn’t been posting regularly?) because it’s filled to the brim with exciting stuff. In addition to law school decisions scheduled to start trickling in (*shudder*), we are less than 2 weeks out from spring break! And a much needed spring break it shall be – there is still snow here on the ground in Boston and it makes me want to cry.

How I feel about this whole "14 degrees while I'm trying to ride at the barn" thing.

How I feel about this whole “14 degrees while I’m trying to ride at the barn” thing.

Regardless, I am suuuuuuper excited about tonight and tomorrow.

1. Tonight is the debut of a homegrown Vagina Monologues -spinoff! Myself and a group of other like-minded students wanted to distance ourselves from the original (tattered, tired, old, racist, obnoxious) Eve Ensler script, and instead let Wellesley peeps speak for themselves.  We have a small but mighty group of students performing their own monologues OR their friends’ monologues. A wide and incredible range of talent and insight. So, so proud of our entire cast! All proceeds go to the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center, so this is a really really personally important event for me. 🙂

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2. I also have my first race of 2014 tomorrow!!! If you recall, I will be running the St. Pat’s 5k in my beloved downtown Providence. I believe the course starts at the State House, so it should be a total blast. There’s even a St. Patrick’s Day parade (a few days early, but hey! Rhode Island, no rules.) afterwards, so it should be really cute and fun. Hoping to beat my 5k PR and run faster than 9’48”. Ideally, I will run 9’40” or below, but I’m not sure how I’ll fare. I wanted to get more hill workouts in, but was really unable to do all the training I wanted to because of shin splints and also absurd amounts of snow and cold temps (I went running in 20 degree weather once and felt frozen and had a runny nose the rest of the day. Don’t care, treadmill it is until it is a minimum of 32 degrees outside. MINIMUM – I still resent it.

Speaking of which, temperatures for the race are actually looking pretty OK!

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46 degrees – basically tropical weather for New Englanders tired of winter. I think I won’t even have to wear a jacket! But I might wear gloves and an ear warmer. We’ll see!

So today I’ve just been relaxing and resting up for the race. I did this “yoga for runners” sequence I found on youtube, and spent some quality time with my cute little foam roller to ease my shin splints. I think that after this 5k I’m going to take at least a week-long break from running: I didn’t give myself proper time to heal.

In other news, my girlfriend just told me that she ran a 1 mile PR of 7’55”, and I responded, “Wow! You’re a real speedster!”

…What’s wrong with me.

Stay tuned for updates!

Peace, sweat and love,

G

 

 

Sunday Runday

In light of the difficulty I had putting up new posts last month, I have decided to do better in March and blog, blog, blog! Also, I need to remind myself that I (being a classic perfectionist and mildly OCD) do not need to write a giant, life-changing, soul-touching post every single time I blog. This is surprisingly not apparent to me. Any other perfectionists out there, just getting in your own way?

Well, I was lucky enough to get a nice long run in. I did an easy 5 miler (didn’t have time for 6), and am super happy to report that when I was finished, my Nike+ app home screen looked like this:

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I have officially run over 200 miles (using my Nike+ account)!!! That, and I have finally broken a 10’00 average. When I started running more seriously using this app last summer (around June/July) I was averaging 12’30” on my runs, and felt totally exhausted, if proud, after those grueling runs. Now I am able to run so, so much faster. Even if it’s not fast in comparison with really “serious” runners, I’ll take it! I ran my fastest mile the other day at 8’31”, and that is really big for me. I’m not a super fast runner – honestly I don’t think I’m built for speed, but rather endurance and strength – but this marks a major accomplishment for me. This makes me feel appreciative and even proud of my body, a body that I haven’t always had a great relationship with.

This weekend I have my St. Pat’s 5k – so I’m really excited for that! I’m hoping to beat my PR and come in at 9’40” or under. I’m at least feeling quite confident that I can come in under 10′, and probably  9’50”. We shall see!

In the meantime, I am going to take care of myself this week, get plenty of sleep (totally caught up on sleep this weekend after my horrendously busy and stressful week), and stay healthy. The gf is feeling sick, and I am nervous that she has something and that I’ll catch it, too! In light of this, I have summoned the wellness trifecta of chia seeds, organic yogurt, and Airborne to try to stay healthy despite the fact that I am a college student and am therefore basically unable to escape hordes of potentially sick people. *sigh*

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Stay healthy everyone! I’m just waiting out this particularly brutal New England winter *shivering emoji*

Peace, sweat and love,

G

 

A Highly Belated Update

You guys. I have been SO BAD. My last blog post is from February 8th. It’s March 1st! Harumph. I know there’s not anything I can do about it, but stiiiiillll…

I am just coming off of the busiest of weeks. It’s ~*midterm season*~ so I’ve been totally blessed with huge amounts of work + extracurriculars + jobs + trying to make it to the gym + feeling slightly under the weather + not sleeping enough.

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So as I write this, I am currently sitting slumped in my bed like a burned-out college zombie catching up on blogs I follow, attempting to figure out how to write such a belated update, and eating delicious yogurt.

I don't know what constitutes "Australian style" yogurt, but I do know that this organic banana vanilla flavor is delicious.

I don’t know what constitutes “Australian style” yogurt, but I do know that this organic banana vanilla flavor is delicious.

I think the best way to catch up in my blogging absence is stick to the handy ABC- format. So, What have I been doing between now and my last post?

A) Celebrating Valentine’s Day with my lady 🙂 I, of course, was not going to mess up our Valentine’s Day/Anniversary (we like to call it Vanniversary), so I made reservations at a fancy restaurant in December. Naturally, I was feeling like I pretty awesome girlfriend/human.

How the gf woke me up on Feb 14 <3

How the gf woke me up on Feb 14 ❤

We dined at Bondir in Cambridge where they offered a crazy prix fixe menu. I wasn’t able to get any decent food pictures because they had dimmed the lights for a romantic atmosphere, but suffice it to say that it was so delicious that my all-American, sandwich-loving gf ate snails and liked them (as did I!).

Pre-dinner selfies

Pre-dinner selfies

B) I finally bought new sneakers. I went to a local running store and they did a gait analysis, and apparently despite my flat duck feet, I do not over-pronate and have a pretty neutral, normal gait. Great news! I still went for my tried-and-true Nike Lungarglide, this time updated from my old and desperately worn out Lunarglide 4’s to the Lungarglide 5. It’s already so, so much better. My old sneakers were so bad that even just putting them on and walking around in them would make my shins start to ache! These new shoes feel like amazing, arch-supporting clouds on my feet.

I bought them in black - goes with everything! And I like to be creative/bright with the rest of my fitness ensembles ;)

I bought them in black – goes with everything! And I like to be creative/bright with the rest of my fitness ensembles 😉

C) I went running! Finally, with the help of my new shoes, I am experiencing barely any shin pain. That, and I’m making sure to put the new Pro Compression socks and Trigger Point foam roller to good use (they couldn’t arrive soon enough!).

D) I went to yoga. I’m in love with the fact that Lululemon stores hold free yoga classes – crucial to a college student/athlete like myself who can’t afford the expense of yoga classes! I’d love to go again tomorrow, but we’ll see how things work out.

Bad off-to-yoga-class selfies FTW!

Bad off-to-yoga-class selfies FTW!

E) I treated myself.

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I found of the the Cool Racerbacks from Lululemon on sale – $29 as compared to the usal $42. Feeling pretty good about being fabulous but also thrifty.

Best part? I'd been eyeing this cute color combo for a while.

Best part? I’d been eyeing this cute color combo for a while.

F) I fueled my body. I gave myself healthful, nourishing foods, but also remembered to let myself live and enjoy food, not fear it. In honor of Eating Disorder Awareness Week, I give a big middle finger to the ED that used to rule my life. My favorite means of doing so? Brunch.

A gruyère, mushroom, and fresh spinach omelette, homefries, and a raw-sugar encrusted scone topped off w/ organic coffee and fresh grapefruit juice. HEAVEN.

A gruyère, mushroom, and fresh spinach omelette, homefries, and a raw-sugar encrusted scone topped off w/ organic coffee and fresh grapefruit juice. HEAVEN.

Peace, sweat and love.

G