Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Bridget's First Ride to Pre-School

My little Bridget totally rocks. She biked 2 miles to pre-school with only 4 water breaks! Go Bridget Go!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

What Piece of Clothing Defines You

For me, it's the black turtleneck. Ask my family and they will all roll their eyes and say that I can't live without at least two black turtlenecks each fall/winter season. The other day, I ran into a lady at the grocery store wearing a black turtleneck. Megan looked at me and belted out very authoritatively that it's too soon to be wearing one. I have to agree with her, reluctantly. But I can't wait till the temps drop into the low 60s and the chilly fall air enters my wardrobe...because that one defining piece of clothing will appear.

So what piece of clothing defines you?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Love It When A Plan Comes Together

On a whim, and thanks for low airfare out of Pittsburgh, my girls and I will be hitting up the great state of Massacusetts for a weekend 5k. And yes, that will be state #34! But the best part is how we gave this weekend getaway a theme - Boston Authors.

Since the race isn't till Sunday, we'll spend Saturday bouncing around Concord to visit Louisa May Alcott's Orchard House, Nathaniel Hawthorne's Old Manse, and Thoreau's Walden. We'll also check out the Minutemen National Park. Best of all, the weekend we're there is a special reenactment - costumes and everything! Both Meg and Bridget are excited - bonus! The race is in Cambridge, which is truly beautiful in the fall. Can't wait. Oh, and did I mention it's an Oktoberfest race and they award prizes for the best costumes. Looks like I have a little sewing to do...

To prepare for this trip, I've decided to polish up on my Boston Authors. Time to reread Little Women, read Scarlett Letter (for the first time, I know, right?), and reread Civil Disobedience. So much fun.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Week of Firsts for Meg

Thursday, my wonderful pumpkin started her first day of her senior year and Friday was her first football game where she got to "paint up" and not sit in the marching band section. A great first week as you can see from her smiles!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Long Runs Are Back

I've missed having a long run on my weekend list of things to do. But that changed today as I knocked out an 8-miler as my half marathon training is amping up. Even with the punishing, never-ending humidity, I was thrilled. I got lost in my thoughts all over again, made to-do lists in my head, let my mind wander aimlessly on such topics as whether Jennifer Aniston is pregnant (I think it was just a blousy top), will Daniel Craig just keep getting sexier as Bond (hell yes he will!), and will the reprisal of Dirty Dancing fail (on the fence on this one)?

An 8-miler on Sunday and a 14-mile bike ride hauling B in the trailer made for an awesome weekend of workouts! Bring on Monday!

Monday, August 15, 2011

OST Begins Today

Operation Strength Training (OST) officially begins today. In my quest for fall PRs, I know I have to strength train. In my past training plans, I have always made sure I log in my log runs. But I've been lax in building up arm and leg strength, both of which are key to building speed. Fortunately, I have found two different 15-20 minute plans, one incorporating weights and medicine ball and the other incorporating yoga moves using your body as resistance. And I like doing both of them. So I have penciled in four weekly sessions, alternating between the two plans. Since each plan is short in time, I can do them while Bridget is watching a Strawberry Shortcake or My Little Pony and never be missed!

So what's your secret to fitting in strength training?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Everything's Hotter in Memphis

I will never complain about the heat and humidity in that I've been to Memphis. It's hotter than hades there. But the southern hospitality makes up for the sweltering heat. 

Our day began with an awesome tour of the  Gibson Guitar factory. I never realized that the Gibson Guitar fame began in Michigan. Memphis alone makes the half and full hollow body guitars. In classic HR fashion I asked our tour guide loads of questions about their employees. Needless to say, I'm even more impressed with Gibson. 

My favorite meal of the trip was lunch at Miss Polly's Soul City Cafe on Beale Street where we had chicken and waffles with turnip greens. So good. Oh, and we washed it all down with PBR.  Yep, the pounds are packing on during this trip!

Checked into our hotel.  Funny sign at the desk cautioned customers that the noise on Beale Street is loud  and if you're expecting a quiet hotel experience, please go elsewhere.  Oh boy! Thank goodness the morning race is just a 5k!

To top off our first day, we hopped in the car and headed over to Graceland. I can't believe how educational and cool this was. And moving. Turns out our trip was smack dab in the middle of Elvis Week, celebrating his life and death (August 16).  Seeing all his hits in the form of gold and platinum records was neat. How could we not be humming his greatest hits for the rest of this trip!

As usual, Greg picked out a fantastic little dive for dinner. We hit up Rendezvous Charcoal Ribs. You really need to check out this place online.  Their staff sticks around for decades - reading about the staff is hysterical!  While waiting for our table, we shared a Pitcher of Memphis craft beer from Ghost River Brewery for a whopping $10.  Did we stop there? Hell no.  Another PBR on Beale Street was in order...before the downpour hit! Oh yeah, there will be no PR tomorrow!

Loved the 5k race. Lots of people were commenting about how happy they were that it was cooler for this race. Really?! Hmmm, 80 degrees with 91% humidity does not equal "cooler" in my book. Turns out they've been having triple digits alot this summer. Post race was grilled hotdog, beer and orange slices. The orange slices were the only nutritional food we had during the 36 hours in Memphis! The course was hot, hilly and challenging, but so much fun since Greg and I ran it together. 

Before leaving one of the friendliest towns we've been to so far in our quest for 50 states, we HAD to find one more southern food joint. And that would be Westy's where I had a grilled cheese and honey sandwich with tots and Greg had a turkey and onions sandwich with jalepeno dip and tots.  Westy's fame is where the Firm, the Rainmaker and 21 Grams were filmed. Seedy joint, but outstanding food!

So fruits and vegetables, here I come. I cheated on you this weekend with your arch enemy lard. But it's you I love and miss!

And yes, 33 states down - 17 on tap!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Today's Junk Mail

I do it. You do it. We all do it. We get sucked in to giving our email addresss to retailers who promise to send YOU, their valued customer, deep discounts in the form of - wait for it - junk (e)mail. So far, I am anxiously awaiting the next BIG DEAL from Groupon, Living Social, the Gilt Group, airlines, Lululemon, Lucy, Nordstrom, and the list goes on. But today's junk email was ridiculous. For example:

• Victoria's Secret emailed me because they "want to make my workout incredible." Really? I'm pretty sure even you, VS, cannot help me run sub-8:00 miles. Incredible would actually be me finishing all my 400m intervals at a speed I could share with others.

• Betty Crocker proposes that tonight I have "Burgers, Bloody Marys and Bacon Bars." Obviously, good ole Betty doesn't know about my track workout for tonight and how anything with red meat in this heat sounds vomit-inducing. Even a Bloody Mary sounds too heavy.

• Lululemon promises that they have "the jacket I've been waiting for." In August? I can't even imagine anything with sleeves until the humidity drops below 50% or the combination of today's temperature and humidity level does not exceed 150. Dear Lululemon, Please resend in 60 days. xoxo, Robin

So what silly nonsense have you received lately?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Our New Routine

Saturday mornings have become "girl time" at our house as Meg, Bridget and I either go for a run or bike ride through the metropark. The only enticement to get Bridget to come along is to let her tackle each of the exercise stations. She loves hanging from the chin-up bars, doing sit-ups, toe reaches, jumping jacks and anything else I will let her stop for. Meg has even joined in. Love our new Saturday morning routine!

Do you have a weekend routine where others can join in?

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Heat Is Getting Old

Indulge me while my thoughts drift off to autumn. You know's when the humidity begins making its exit. When the air just smells reason or explanation. When the temps dip in the 60s and you get excited to take a run. When you can wear jeans without sweating. Love Fall. And I love these two outfits.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

New Goggles Make the Girl

Bridget wearing her first pair of goggles for her nightly swim lessons. So. darn. cute.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Summer Reading List

I've failed miserably with my read two books per month challenge during these summer months. Maybe it's the great weather, or that I'm spending more time swimming and biking in this heat, or taking my girls to the pool, but whatever it is, it's resulting in zero books read during June and July. I tried reading The Paris Wife, but just couldn't get into it. So I've decided that if I'm going to keep up with the reading, and maybe actually read TWO books during August, then I need to come up with a better summer reading list. Thank goodness there's Harry Potter. With the movie franchise concluding, I realized I had forgotten many important details of the last two books. What better reason to start the series over?! I started Sorcerer's Stone a couple nights ago and I can't put it down. Looks like I've found the magic :)