Thursday, December 19, 2013

The End of a Season

I've thought about writing this post a number of times now since Saturday but I'm still not sure I'll get it out properly. 

I had run a number of 5ks prior to this year but this was really my first year "racing". It started with the Fenway Park Spartan Race at the end of last year. Never in my wildest imagination did I ever think I'd have accomplished what I have in the last 12 months. I didn't set out to complete two trifectas let alone one. I never planned to even do a Beast. 

Since Fenway, I've run two more stadium races - Citi Field and Citizens Bank Park. Hell Citi Field was done after running the inaugural Yuengling 5k, the hilliest 5k ever. We went to Miami and ran the Florida Super in February. I had figured if I were to run any Super that would be it, it would be fairly flat. There was NO WAY I was going to do the NJ Super if I did EVER think about doing a trifecta. 

I volunteered at the Tuexdo Sprint. It was the first race I had gone to since starting to run Spartan Races and boy did I regret not running. I ran the PA Sprint and did the sweeper wave - such a rewarding experience. A week later I did Superhero Scramble took a bit but I survived and fully appreciated all that Spartan did. August brought Warrior Dash on a miserable day and introducing my brother to Spartan Race in Virginia.

Then came September which started with more volunteering and running the NJ Super. After back to back weekends in July I knew I couldn't do the Vermont Beast so when they announced the Sprint I signed up. Probably the hardest Sprint to date. The month ended getting my sister in law on the bandwagon running Citizens Bank Park. 

October was just road races. Well a 5k and a five miler! I watched friends run in the NYC marathon which has inspired me to want to do a half. 

November and December gave me the completion of my trifectas. South Carolina was chilly but not to bad. We figured Texas HAD to be warmer. The morning of the TX Beast it was 43 degrees with 20 mph winds complete cloud covering. After picking up our packets I cried because I really didn't think I could do it. After 5:40 with encouragement from my team I crossed the finish line. 

There are a number of people I need to thank.  First and foremost, my husband for believing in me and introducing me to all of this. The friends, who are more like family, those that understand the crazy, that I have met along the way. I can't believe I don't get to see some of you for a number of months.  I'll miss you all.  AROO!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! 

Can't wait to start the day with some Warm Flow Yoga at Tula Yoga. Have to start working off the feast at some point, right? 

There are many things I'm thankful for....

-my husband: for always being there for me, making me laugh, and getting me involved in the craziness of OCR

-my friends and family

-my Spartan family: I've only been doing Spartan Races for a year, but in that time I've met so many wonderful people - racers and staff alike. It's nice having people who get the insanity of doing these races. 

Hope you all have a great thanksgiving and are able to spend it with those you love! Happy Hanukkah to those of you that celebrate! 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Reflections on the Beast

I felt batter, bruised, and broken but I did it! I complete my first Spartan Race Beast and earned my Trifecta. 

At 36, never did I think I'd be pulling myself on a rope across a lake. I successfully did the Tryolean Traverse and not because I noticed I was being filmed. Even with pants on I have rope burn or something with bruising behind my legs. The right leg is bad. I will be wearing yoga pants to work tomorrow. 

I only failed at three obstacles: the traverse wall, spear throw, and rope climb. Not too shabby.

The worst part of the entire thing wasn't getting separated from some of my teammates, it was being wet and cold. Of course it was in the 70s all week in Winnsboro, SC but race day the temps dipped to the 30s. It was supposed to be around 55 when our heat went off, not sure if it was. They didn't waste anytime getting us wet sortly after the start it was right into a variation on rolling mud. 

I can't even recall everything we went through. By mile 12 things that happened at mile 2 seemed like ages ago. I thought I cannot believe in another month I'll be doing this all over again in Texas. Please let it be warmer. 

I will post more pictures after I upload the ones my sister-in-law (hi Kristen) took with my camera and I collect others that were taken. 

Till then....AROO!

Friday, November 8, 2013

On the road...

I feel like it's been ages since I've last posted, probably because it has. I'm currently sitting in an RV headed to Winnsboro, SC to complete the Spartan Beast. I'm not nervous...yet. 

Traveling by RV is the way to go. Although flying would be SO much faster. It's been a fun trip so far. There are ten of us. We've watched three movies: Dodgeball, Mallrats, and my choice Despicable Me. Found a Starbucks #redcupsareback when re-fueling 😍 and we're now onto karaoke. 

A few more hours to go. Think I need a nap before meeting up with more of the Spartan family. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


I feel like such a slacker, especially after Blogtember, and there is good reason for it!

A co-worker gave her notice and I was promoted to her position with a pay raise, since it's more responsibility and a bigger workload.  This I all found out Friday, October 4th and was pretty much thrown right into training. I'm going from an administrative position to managerial - woo hoo!


My training is going pretty well, but she's been here and doing the job for 11 years - leaving me some pretty big shoes to fill. She recommended me for the position and I'm confident I won't let her down. The days have been flying by and by the time I get home I'm exhausted and the last thing I want to do after looking at a computer and numbers all day is sit in front of a computer at home. I promise once everything settles down I'll get back to regular postings.

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Thursday, October 3, 2013

2 Chicks with Chocolate

Day 16 of BlogtemberReview a book, place, or product. A bit late; I started writing this last week.

I'd be severely remiss if I didn't share 2 Chicks with Chocolate with you! Danielle won two tickets to their first Beer & Chocolate pairing class and so graciously asked if I'd like to join her. I'm so glad I did! I only took two pictures of the craft beer; the chocolate did not last long.

image from Groupon

The 2 chicks are a daughter and mother team who make the most delicious chocolate EVER! The class was run by Tara Nurin, a craft beer journalist, and Gary, a beer distributor, if I recall correctly. They were both very knowledgeable and their banter was comedic. 


Mental note to self: finish writing and don't wait because now the paper with the pairings is no longer in your purse and your memory is for shit! 

We tried around 9 different craft beers - some were better than others. I'm fairly sure I will never like IPAs. There was a chocolate stout to start off. A pumpkin beer, framboise, and others.

We tried various different chocolates and caramels. All were delicious! Dark chips, some pecan caramel, cranberry. Even if you don't like beer you must pay the store a visit! They have locations in South River and Metuchen and are opening two more, one in Middletown and the fourth in I believe it was Somerset, or maybe Somerville. I was mostly happy about the one in Middletown even closer to me :)

The best pairing of the night I think was the Chocolate Stout from Rogue Ales with the Jumpin' Java chocolate - dark chocolate with ground coffee beans and espresso sea salt TO.DIE.FOR. I bought some and was gracious enough to share a bit with my co-workers.

They plan to change up the beers seasonally so you can go back many times and try something new. Use BeerForBabes discount code for 80% off future classes! Now go sign up!
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Thursday, September 26, 2013

Go to a coffee shop and write....or not

Thursday, September 26: Go to a coffee shop. Order a favorite drink. Write about what makes you happy and what makes you sad. Or write about anything you'd like! Bonus points for including a photo from the coffee shop. (I recommend downloadingOmmwriter and bringing headphones along!) *if you can't make it to a coffee shop, at least leave your usual space and write someplace new.

Umm, yeah so this didn't happen, either, like the last couple of Blogtember prompts :(

I do plan on catching up on one of the prompts - to review a book, place or product (day 16) because I HAVE to share with you and everyone the place I went to last night - 2 Chicks with Chocolate! It is TO.DIE.FOR!!!
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Monday, September 23, 2013

Life Lately

Day 15 of Blogtember: life lately. Days 13 & 14 slacked due to packing and traveling for the World Championships in Killington, VT

Life lately...has been busy and occupied with climbing a few mountains - literally! September has been the busiest month obstacle race wise for us. The 7th was the Tri-State Super in Vernon, NJ, this past weekend the Spartan World Championships, and this weekend coming up the Spartan Race at Citizens Bank Park. 
Photo courtesy of Manda Pierce
After seeing this my sunglasses are WAY too big for my face!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Only photos!

Today's Blogtember prompt is only photos! Bear with me on the iPhone photos.



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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

A Letter & A Memory

Since I slacked yesterday and didn't get to this.

Day 10 Blogtember topic for the day: Write a public love letter to someone in your life. (It doesn't necessarily need to be romantic.)

Dear Ron,

I know we say "I Love You" many times throughout the day but I don't often tell you just how much I appreciate you. You mean the world to me. Without you I wouldn't be the person I am today. You motivate me and because of that I am stronger and more confident than I have ever been. I am more willing to try new things, even if it's because you shove a fork full of who knows what into my mouth.

In two short weeks we'll be married for three years! Time surely does fly when you're having fun. I know we've had our ups and downs and gone through trials and tribulations; but there isn't anyone else that I'd want by my side to go through it with.

I love you!


Day 11 of Blogtember is simply a memory you'd love to relive.

A memory that I'd love to relive is the day Ron proposed. I'm fortunate that it was recorded, by a dear friend. It was also done VERY publicly. The one thing I wish about that day is that I heard what he was saying. See for yourself.

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Self Portrait + Tri-State Spartan Super

Today's Blogtember topic is simply a self portrait. This is from shortly after I got my DSLR.


Tri-State Spartan Super

Last weekend we tackled the Tri-State Spartan Super held at South Base, Mountain Creek in Vernon, NJ. It was my second time running with Team Braveheart. Team Braveheart is an amazing group of people. Right from the website:

Team Braveheart’s mission is to develop and promote healthy awareness, goal setting and team building. Our ultimate goal is to motivate the world by sharing our life experiences. We encourage others to change their mindsets & do something new.

It was approximately 8.25 miles up and down the mountain. Lots of trails and fairly even placed obstacles - OUT, 7' and 8' walls, Spearman (aka Spear Throw), Log Hop, Tire Flip, Barbed Wire Crawl, Inverted Wall, Rope Climb, Traverse Wall, and Fire Jump. I may be missing something but covered most.

I know many people who did this race last year were somewhat disappointed that it was about three miles shorter than last year and both the cliff jump and a rope traverse were eliminated. The cliff jump we found out was tossed due to mud clogging the water park's filters, so that most likely wasn't Spartan's doing but the park saying no.

Anywho, overall I thought it was a good race. I did fairly well placing around the 50% mark for racers on Saturday. I finished in 3:20:07.2. I was happy with my time and finished quicker than Ron anticipated. After racing I was volunteering and my shift was from 2-10pm, he figured I'd finished right around 2pm, nope finished about 12:45pm! 

I only failed three obstacles - Log Hop, Spear Throw, and the Rope Climb. I'm kicking myself because I made it half way up the rope and my body just felt spent; I probably could've made it all the way up. I was super happy that I conquered the Traverse Wall - I hadn't been able to get it since the Fenway Race. I excitedly said "F**k ya!" once I hit the bell. The volunteer who offered to hold my Camelbak was like LOVE IT! 

It was my second time volunteering for Spartan Race and I would highly recommend it. Both times I've done course volunteering - in Tuxedo, NY at the Barbed Wire Crawl and in NJ at the Spear Throw. You meet the staff and the other racers (including some of the elites, like Andi Hardy, which feels like meeting a celebrity), plus you get a free race! It really is a great experience! Spartan Race is more than just a race, it really is a community.

Next up in racing for me is the Sprint at the World Championships in Vermont. For anyone interested there is still time to sign up for the race September 28th at Citizens Bank Park - use my link and get a 15% discount!
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Thursday, September 12, 2013

How has social media changed you?

Day 8 Blogtember topic: Discuss ways that blogging or social media has changed you.

I'm still fairly new to blogging so I can't say that has changed me too much, yet. Social media on the other hand has definitely changed my life in many ways.
Our very first picture together - pardon the quality I had to go find it on MySpace

If it weren't for MySpace I'm not sure I'd be married right now. You see I met this guy at a NJ Devils game and we started talking after I saw that we were in the same Devils Fan group. So because thanks to MySpace I connected with the love of my life.



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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Favorite online places to drop some moola!

Day 7:  Share links to your favorite online shops, preferably with a few photos of your favorite items in each shop. Here are a few I've purchased from and others that I'm looking to purchase things. Happy shopping!

Paradise Sweets//The most delicious cookies you'll ever taste!

Fashionative//I don't own one yet but some great bracelets can be found here.

Firedaughter Clothing//Another one that shop that I have save in Etsy and pinned on Pinterest.

Lululemon Athletica//Now this one I do own a few pieces from. I'd love more but my wallet just isn't that deep.

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