Friday Fitness: A Weird Week

My schedule was way off this week.   There were two big reasons.  Weather and Oscar.  Make that three.  Sickness.

Saturday I really wanted to stay in bed.  It was so warm and cozy.  And I had the whole bed to myself because hubby had fallen asleep watching a movie.  But I dragged myself out of bed for the group long run.  I had 10 easy miles on the schedule.  I figured I’d run at about a 10:30 pace, which aligned with what two of the other gals wanted to do.  The whole group set out together, but as people hit their distances they turned back and then there were just 3.  (Actually there were 5 but the other two were way ahead of us)  We ended up running 11 miles (10:05 min/mile) because two of us ran a little faster than we thought and we kept going back to pick up our third runner.Saturday group run

I usually rest on Sunday, but it was such a gorgeous day!  (50 degrees and sunny)  A local running group was having a race in the afternoon.  Hubby and Cupcake had plans to go to the bookstore, so Pumpkin and I decided to join some friends for the race.  It was the Frostbite 5, but most people were wearing short sleeves!  I had to do lots of weaving because I started in the back with the stroller and I got held up a bit behind people.  Pumpkin slept in the stroller the whole time.  Well, until I hit a speedbump running an 8:00 min/mile pace right before the finish line! 5.12 miles in 46:42 (9:07 min/mile).

Frostbite 5Monday was a sort of rest day.  I did a quick cardio dance workout just to rack up some steps on my Fitbit.

Tuesday didn’t go at all like I expected.  Since hubby stayed home from work I was able to sneak out for a bit and head to the Y.  I did a 20 minute warmup on the elliptical and then ran through my strength training program. 

Wednesday was back to school for Cupcake, so Pumpkin and I went to the Y and I did my speedwork run (which I would normally do on Tuesdays).  Oh, and I normally wouldn’t run on the treadmill, but it was snowing again.  And I really didn’t feel like doing a stroller interval run in the snow!  I did 5 x 1000m (8:13 min/mile) with 400m RI (9:30 min/mile) all while watching HGTV.  I almost lost it, though, when a commercial with a dachshund came on.

treadmill runYesterday I wasn’t able to head to the Y in the morning.  We had window guys coming.  And then I couldn’t go when Cupcake came home from school because she came home sick.  Thankfully hubby came home just after 4:00 and I was able to enjoy some sunshine!  3.2 miles (8:52 min/mile)

SunshineI’m taking today as a rest day.  Cupcake doesn’t have school today and she’s still a bit under the weather so I don’t want to put her in child watch at the Y.  And tomorrow I have a race.  It’s the MRTT winter virtual.  I’m either running 10K or 13.1 but I figured I’d wait to see how I feel tomorrow (it’s supposed to be super cold) and see what the rest of the group is doing. 

I kind of slacked on the strength training this week, but hopefully next week things will be a little more normal and I can get back into my routine.


Have a great weekend, everyone!!!

Life without the Pitter Patter of Puppy Feet

Yesterday was a devastating day.  After 11 years of sweet puppy love we said goodbye to our precious Oscar.

Oscar in the TeepeeIn early December we noticed he was having trouble breathing.  After a trip to the vet he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure.  A trip to the cardiologist confirmed the diagnosis and a treatment plan was put in place.  It involved a lot of pills.  3 times a day.

Even though the pills had one very unfortunate side effect (frequent urination) we were willing to do what we could to get him back to his usual self and get to love on him for another 12-18 months.  And it worked.  Until yesterday. 

OscarOscar joined our family when he was just 8 weeks old.  Weighing in at a whopping 4 pounds, he fit in the palm of hubby’s hand.  He was a playful puppy.  So much energy!  He was a great little traveler and loved taking trips to the lake.

Oscar on a boatIf he made his way to the back of the house he would take off down the hill, through the sand, run down the dock and dive onto the boat.  He loved boat rides.  He loved lounging at the lake.  He did not like the neighbors.

At the Southernmost Point MonumentHe even traveled all the way down to Florida with us.  We didn’t hear a peep from him in the car the entire drive.  He vacationed in Key West.  Lucky dog.

Playing ballIf someone got down on the floor he saw that as an invitation to play.  He’d pounce.  oSometimes he wanted to play ball.  Sometimes he wanted to wrestle.  You could even get him to do a few tricks.  He was a master at rolling over.  He loved to play.  The only thing he loved more was to snuggle.

Snuggly puppyEvery blanket in the house became his blanket.  You couldn’t sit on the couch without a blanket. He would snout you and snout you and snout you until you tucked him in.  Even in the heat of summer!  He wasn’t always good at tucking himself in.  His back end was so far away.  It didn’t always make it under the covers.  #puppybutt

He made me laugh.  He was such a strange dog.  And so handsome.  At half a dog tall and a dog in a half long he couldn’t go down the stairs on his own.  We’d have to carry him down on the “Oscarlator”.  He loved playing “top of the stairs” where he would run and jump around so you couldn’t catch him to take him downstairs.

He chomped rawhides like a dog 5 times his size.  He could devour retriever rolls in no time.  But someone had to hold it for him because he couldn’t do it with his t. rex arms. 

He was stingy with his kisses.  He did not give them out freely.  Even though I tried to kiss him a million times I don’t think he even kissed me 100 times in 11 years.  But it wasn’t because he didn’t love me.  I know he did.  I could tell by the way he wagged his tail when I came home. 

Oscar "Mo" HawkinsI just wish I could have kissed him a million times.  I wish we would have had marshmallows in the house yesterday so I could have given him one as a treat before we said goodbye.  Marshmallows were his favorite.  I’m glad I got to hold him for almost an hour because it was a snow day and we didn’t have the morning rush to deal with.  The house feels so weird without him.  I keep expecting to see a puppy butt sticking out of the blankets.  I’m surprised at not having gates to step over.  There’s no puddle of water in the kitchen from his sloppy drinking.  There was no barking at the doorbell when flowers from dear friends were delivered this morning.

But I take comfort in knowing that he isn’t sick any more.  And he lived a great life.  He was one lucky dog.  And we were so lucky to have him as a part of our family.

Recipe: Mashed Parnsips

Good morning!  How are you feeling today?  Did you stay up late watching football?  Drink too much?  Eat too much?  I didn’t.  I went to bed at my usual, reasonable hour because, well, I like sleep.  I like it way more than I like football!  So, I hope you’re not in a food coma because I have food for you today!!!  I have a quick and delicious side dish for you, Mashed Parsnips.

Take a break from mashed potatoes and try mashed parsnips instead.  I love parsnips, so I’m always looking for ways to prepare them and feed them to my family.  I want them to love parsnips, too.  So far it’s working on at least one child………..

Mashed Parsnips #recipe #sidedish #veggiesBefore I even took a bite of mashed parsnips and a bite of meatloaf Pumpkin had pretty much eaten her entire scoop of parsnips!  I can’t blame her.  They are deliciously sweet.  They were a perfect compliment to the meatloaf and a nice change from mashed potatoes. 

If you’re looking to add a little variety to your life try these mashed parsnips!!!

Mashed Parsnips
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  1. 2 lbs parsnips, peeled and cut into 1" pieces
  2. 2 tsp salt
  3. 3 tbsp heavy cream
  4. 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  5. 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  1. Add the parsnips, 1 tsp of salt and parsnips to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain the parsnips.
  2. Transfer parsnips to a food processor. Add remaining salt, cream, butter and nutmeg. Process until smooth.
Adapted from Whole Foods Market
Adapted from Whole Foods Market
What Does She Do All Day?

Friday Fitness: At the YMCA

Friday, we meet again.  It’s been an interesting week.  The YMCA was offering a no joiner’s fee for the month of January, so after crunching some numbers I decided at the last minute to join the Y on Sunday.  On the last day of the promotion.  Pumpkin’s dance class didn’t work out and both girls want to take swim lessons.  It’s costing me more to pay for Cupcake’s gymnastics class per month that to join the Y and for Pumpkin to take swim.  So, I’ll be pulling Cupcake out of gymnastics at the end of February and both girls will start swimming lessons at the Y in March. 
And we get to take advantage the other benefits of the Y, like open swim, the fitness center, free classes and Cupcake can still take a gymnastics class (though she wants to try soccer).  I’m excited!  And lots of my friends have Y memberships, too, so we can do fun things together!  Yay!

So with my new YMCA membership I tried some new things this week!

Saturday – MRTT group run.  8.14 miles (10:07 min/mile).  I was hoping to do 10, but I was feeling the effects of my DietBet.  My energy levels weren’t what they should be.  8 was all I could do.  But we had an awesomely large group of ladies out and that made me super happy!!!Group run

Sunday – rest.  And by rest I mean run a thousand errands, including signing up for a Y membership.

Monday – I went to my first class!  There was a new class just starting that day called Group Power, so I popped in.  It was great!  It’s a 1-hour, high rep weight training class, using adjustable barbells and choreographed to music.  It was a lot of fun and hard work!  I’ll definitely pop into that class again!

Tuesday – 4.0 (9:30 min/mile) miles to celebrate a 4-0 birthday.  Not mine, but one of my MRTT friends.  I was happy to help her celebrate!  We dropped the kiddos off at childwatch at one of the Y locations that lets you run outside.  After our run I did a little strength training before heading out.

Wednesday – The Y has a cool program called ActivTrax, which customizes workouts based on your fitness level and goals.  I met with a staff member to go through the set up process and did a fitness test and got started.  I warmed up with a 1 mile treadmill run (9:50 min/mile) and went through my recommended exercises.  It’s a total body workout, but there’s typically a focus.  That day’s focus was chest.  And there’s always an abs workout. 

Thursday – 5.60 (9:13 min/mile) miles with some MRTT girls.  I was supposed to do a tempo run, but it’s really hard to miss a group run.  So I did a little of both.  We ran the first 3 miles together and then a super speedy friend helped push me (and she pushed my stroller) for two speedy miles and then a half mile cool down.  My splits were 10:16, 9:35, 9:50, 8:03, 8:19, 9:10.  Tempo run success!!

Friday – Due to all the fun I had during the week I was really behind on work.  I was up early this morning to work and even though I found out my deadline had been pushed to tomorrow I couldn’t convince Pumpkin to go to the Y today.  So I had to settle for 30 minutes of cardio and I went ahead and finished my work. Now we can spend the afternoon with friends and relax this evening. 

And hopefully my legs will be fresh for tomorrow’s long run!


Have a great weekend!!!

Sew a Baby Lovie Blanket

I have a super cute and quick sewing project for you today for those sweet little babies.  Today I’m going to show you how to sew a Lovie Blanket for baby!  These make great gifts for baby showers!  And if you have an embroidery machine you can personalize them to make them extra special.

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketYou just need a little bit of two minky fabrics and some trim.  Here I used a satin ruffle trim. 

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketFirst up is cutting your minky fabric.  You’ll want to cut both the front and back pieces 16″ x 16″.

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketThen find something round to use as a guide for rounding the corners. I used the lid from a salsa jar.  You can either trace then cut or use a rotary cutter.  Do this to all 4 corners on both pieces of fabric.

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketIf you’re going to embroider the lovie now is the time to do it.  Once you’ve done that it’s time to baste the trim in place lining up the raw edges.  I recommend pinning or clipping the trim in place because both fabrics are pretty slippery!  Make sure to leave a little extra trim at the start/end points.

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketSew the trim all the way around, overlapping the ends.  I used the stitch on the trim as my sewing guide.

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketNow we’re ready to sew the two pieces together.  Line the fabrics up right sides together, with the trim in between.  Pin or clip like crazy!!!  If you’ve never sewn minky you’ll want to take this nice and slow.  Minky is slippery, but minky on minky with satin in between is super slippery!!!  Sew all the way around the square, leaving a 2 inch opening for turning your fabric.

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketFlip your lovie blanket right side out, then topstitch all the way around the edge to hold the fabric in place and close up the spot you left for turning.  And you’re done!

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketI love how this purple one turned out, but these lovies aren’t just for girls!

Sew a Baby Lovie BlanketBaby boys like them, too!  Just swap out your satin ruffle for some satin blanket binding! 

Momma will love the personalized gift and baby will love the soft textures and comfort that comes with it.

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