Thursday, November 28, 2013

Black Friday deals for health and fitness

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American readers! I'm thankful for all of you for letting me share my health and fitness journey. You all inspire me to be better!

This weekend is the biggest shopping weekend of the year and there are some awesome online health and fitness deals out there too. Here are some of the ones I found…share more in the comments!

Fitness Apparel

And a sneak peak of the Ellie December collection! (20% off when you click here.)

Gyms in Chicago

10 classes for $100 (buy until 12/2)


List any other offers you know of in the comments!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Second City Food, Wine + Social Club Inaugural Event

I'm lucky enough (through blogger connections) to be part of the new and exclusive Second City Food, Wine + Social Club. Last night was our inaugural event and the main focus was wine tasting. We learned how to correctly swirl and smell wine before tasting and different aromas for red and white wines.We also talked about the different regions wines come from. It was a fancy event and I feel like I can talk wine better now. I'll impress you next time we go out to eat!

The wines that we tasted included:
NV De Bartoli "Family Selection" from Brut, Australia (Chardonnay)
2010 Domaine de Reuilly "Les Pierres Plates" from Reuilly, France (Sauvignon Blanc)
2010 Le Terrazze Rosso Conero from Marche, Italy (Montepulciano)
2010 Massaya "Silver Selection" from Bekka Valley, Lebanon (Cinsault/Grenache/Mouvedre)

There's Lindsay from The Garden Apartment! We both agreed that the Massaya red wine from Bekka Valley was our favorite. I'm going to have to try more Lebanese wines!

My name card…"the nuclear and health nut." This is my new tag line!

Wine, wine, and more wine! (There was also food, I promise.)

Some Purdue alumni at the event! Thanks to Lauren (on the right) of Chi Gal Lauren for hosting this great inaugural event!

Follow Second City Social on Twitter and Instagram.

What do you know about wine tasting?

What is your favorite wine?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

The 8-minute workout

One of my friends recently told me that all he does for his daily workout is this scientifically-proven 8-minute body weight workout. I had actually seen this article before but didn't try doing the workout. However, I'm traveling to a conference tomorrow for a full seven days and I know I won't have time to workout. But, I have to have time for an 8-minute workout, right?

Do each movement for 30 seconds, with 10 seconds rest in between.

The best thing about this workout is that you only need a wall and chair, and a timer on your phone. You work every part of your body and it's proven that high intensity interval training (HIIT) works. You just have to be sure to make each 30-second movement worth it.

Have you tried this workout or something similar?

How do you stay motivated to stay active while traveling?

Monday, November 4, 2013

Race Recap: Hot Chocolate 15K in Chicago

The Hot Chocolate 15K in Chicago yesterday was one of my best races ever! Not only did I PR at 1:16:17 (from 1:18:52 last year) but I also ran my best pace ever in a race, 8:11/mile! (Not counting track and cross country races in high school.) That's even a faster pace than my 4-mile race earlier this year! I really was going out there to just have fun and run a pain free race after the brutal Chicago Marathon three weeks ago, but I felt great, started fast, and kept the pace. I am surprised that I was able to run that fast because I have been training over 9:00/mile for the marathon. I think it was all of the crossfit endurance track workouts that I did over the past few months that really made a difference in me being able to do this race fast.

I went to the expo on Friday morning and it wasn't crowded at all. A big improvement from last year when there were long lines to get packets and it was outside in the cold. I registered with a fast finish time because the race was really crowded last year year for the first 2.5 miles because the 5k starts with the 15k. This year was a wave start so it was less crowded in the beginning and it was also nice to be in front! I wore my Chicago Marathon neon half-zip, which was perfect for the 40-degree weather.

The run started pretty quickly, with the same start as the Chicago Marathon along Columbus Dr. I did the first 2 miles at close to 8:00/mile pace and then I decided that I either need to slow down or try for another PR. I slowed down a little bit but kept close to 8:15 pace. Then, the miles flew by and I realized that I would easily PR! It was excited to know that because I wasn't planning on it. I guess I need to be more confident in my running, especially after marathon training for months!

The best part about the race was that my legs didn't hurt, and neither did my ankles. I truly enjoyed the race, unlike the last part of the marathon. I really only got tired in the last 2 miles but the thought of my PR kept me going. My legs were a bit sore after but I feel just fine today.

I ran into some fellow 6am crossfitters, Liz and Daryn, at the finish line. They also ran the Chicago Marathon a few weeks ago! We decided to skip getting chocolate and beat the crowd to brunch instead. It was a good idea because all the brunch/breakfast places got really crowded due to the race. Overall, it was a beautiful fall morning and a great race!

The Hot Chocolate 15/5k is continuing it's tour through the rest of 2013 and onto 2014! You can use code HealthyfitMUG to get a free travel mug with registration for any city!

Did you run the Hot Chocolate 15/5k yesterday? How'd it go?

Disclaimer: I am part of the Hot Chocolate 15/5K blogger program and got a free race entry and swag for writing about the race. All opinions and text are my own.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Friday Favorites...Halloween Style!

Favorite activity
Carving pumpkins!

Favorite costume

Favorite workout
Halloween WOD at RNCF

What were your favorites this week?