Monthly Archives: December 2011

Goodbye 2011

Yesterday – ran 2.84 miles in 28:40. Today – hitting the gym eventually 🙂

I can’t believe 2011 is over! I hope everyone has fun plans to ring in the New Year. We’ll be heading to this for the night:

Sorry I had to 🙂

Actually, J and I are going to dinner with Jodi, Casey, Misha and her BF Stefan at this delish Italian restaurant that’s owned by Fabio from Top Chef. I’m having serious trouble deciding between Butternut Squash Ravioli or Pesto Gnocchi.

They even have a champagne toast at midnight! But because I’m not big on patience, I picked up my favorite $6 almond champagne from TJs thinking we can start the champagne-ing before dinner. We’re going to do apps, drinks and hair styling (courtesy of Jodi’s amazing skills) before dinner then head out for a late night. This weekend will mark 2 nights in a row of me staying up past 12 – incredible!

I hope everyone has an amazing, fun and safe New Years! Don’t drink and drive, don’t drink and text, and have a great end to 2011 and an even better start to 2012!

What are you doing for New Years?

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Filed under Holidays, Mmm Food

Christmas Catch-Up

My brain is so fried lately. I stuttered so badly at the gym today that Jason was able to visually observe my mental lapse without being able to hear me over his headphones. He actually pulled them out and looked at me and said “Did you just stutter? Like hardcore stutter?”

Yesterday morning I also forgot to put the coffee pot back under the coffee maker and I brewed a pot of coffee onto the countertop (thanks for cleaning it up Mom!).

Since my brain just doesn’t want to function, I figured I would just share some pictures from our Christmas weekend. Enjoy!

Maddi and I organized a family Christmas Edition of Minute to Win It. We had my poor Grandma do the cookie on the face thing where you have to get it from  your forehead to your mouth without using your hands and she got cookie crumbs in here eyes. We didn’t think that one through…

Doesn’t it look like the rooster is landing on Alli’s head?

How cute are the stockings from my grandparents?

Nanny & Grampy

Our tree on Christmas morning

The baby of the family was so excited to open her gift.

Grandad & Grandma

Nikki DID NOT like the dancing Santa Duck.

And the best picture of the whole weekend… I walked outside on Christmas night to find Jason cheating on me with his new girlfriend:

Precious.

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas/Happy Hanukkah/Fantastic Festivus! Can you believe we are just a few days away from 2012?

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Filed under Dingo, Holidays, J

Merry Christmas!

It’s super busy prepping everything for Christmas! Yesterday I managed to squeeze in a 4.44 mile run in 44:04. No clue how I managed such perfect 4-synchronization. What can I say? I’m special. Today I got up early and hit the elliptical for 20 minutes before taking on Body Pump with Misha:

Tiffany & Misha at my birthday

After the sweat sesh, we hit up Coffee Bean for drinks and a little gift exchnage. Isn’t it funny when you and your friends think so alike you buy each other the same gift? We swapped Cranberry Pear Bellini candles from Bath and Bodyworks, and if you haven’t smelled this candle yet I suggest you go fight the mall crowds and do so immediate – Heaven I tell you.

Now the rest of the day is dedicated to baking, camera-charging and laundry doing before we head to church at 5 and follow that up with our annual dinner and Christmas Eve celebration with the family.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Does your family have any Christmas Eve traditions or do you save everything for the Big Day?

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Twice is Nice

Ran 1.25 miles yesterday + a ridiculous leg workout. I’m 99% sure I’ll be running the Great Race of Agoura Pacific Half Marathon so it’s going to be back to squeezing in weekend long runs for me. I’m determined to beat my 2:18 time now!

This week was full of swanky holiday partying at work. On Thursday, we headed up north to the Four Seasons Biltmore Santa Barbara for a holiday lunch with our whole company. Jodi drove and provided the necessary road trip snacks:

When you’re about to go have a fancy free lunch at the Four Seasons, it’s only proper to make sure there are 762g of sugar coursing through your bloodstream when you arrive.

Needless to say, it was gorgeous, the food was amazing and we had a blast.

The massive tree in the lobby couldn’t fit in a picture.

That butternut squash soup was the best soup I’ve ever had. It was topped with cinnamon creme fraiche and little bits of heaven. (Please note that I embarrassed all my coworkers by taking constant food pictures. I was shameless for the sake of this blog.)

The lunch was really fun even though I didn’t win an iPad.

On Friday, I actually had to get up and blow dry my hair for the second day in a row. I made the smart decision of working for a company that is headquartered in SB, but I work out of the parent company office near LA. The perk of this set-up – 2 holiday parties for me.

Friday’s holiday lunch was at the INCREDIBLE Sherwood Country Club in Westlake Village. Work on the street is that Britney Spears just bought a new house there and Sean Connery was kicked out because the other members didn’t like him.

Just because I want to name drop some more – they filmed the engagement party scene in Bridesmaids here.

See that plate of desserts in the back? I practically licked it clean.

Everyone in the company received a lucky $2. I still didn’t win an iPad at this part either, but Jodi’s $2 gave her a bit of luck and she went home of a with a bottle of wine!

After lunch, we took some more pictures then went to look at real estate. I am having trouble deciding which house I want so I might have to buy them all.

If you could live anywhere and money was no object, where would you live?

I would either live in Lake Sherwood or in Cameron Diaz’s house in The Holiday.

Random house fact of the day:

The Spelling Manor has a 17,000 sq. ft. basement that Candy Spelling has filled to the brim with Halloween and Christmas decorations purchased at Costco. She literally drove around to every Costco in the greater LA area to purchase every single Nutcracker that they sold one year.

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Filed under Holidays, Party Time

Pomona Holiday Half Recap

I’m a little late to the recap party, but I’ve been waiting on pictures (and still waiting for some… Mom… JK!). I haven’t quite mastered the art of carrying my own camera for 13.1 miles so I had to rely on J and my Mom for any pictures other than what I packed and ate.

The morning started way too early when my alarm went on at 4:40 am. I kid you not, the most pain I experienced from running my first half was the excruciating headache that rolled in around 11:00 from not having any coffee. Seriously awful. I had laid out all my stuff the night before so I wouldn’t forget anything:

Ipod, Garmin, nuun, ear warmers, Clif Bar, Clif Shotblocks, Spibelt, Zensah Calf Sleeves

I ended up leaving the nuun because I wasn’t planning to carry my handheld. I ate the Blueberry Clif Bar for breakfast and packed the Shotbloks in my Spibelt along with some chapstick and tissues (which I never ended up using either).

My Dad and I left the house at 5:30 and made the hour+ drive to Pomona. When we got there is was so stinking cold. I have never been so grateful that I threw an extra jacket in my car at the last minute. My Dad had also brought us each a pair of gloves from the 99 Cent store so we could ditch them if it got too warm.

After finding the (real! flush! clean!) bathrooms, we picked up our packets and I got to meet the speedy, awesome Danica who was greeting everyone at the registration tables.

We got our stuff and headed back to the car to wait and warm up.

I was so glad to not have the twist-tie chip timers that we always get in 5ks. For some reason, those things drive me crazy trying to put them on.

We headed out at 7:40 to line up for the 8:00 start time. I saw Jason and my Mom right away as we took off running.

The first couple miles went by super fast as we headed out toward an airport and ran along the speedway. It was nice and flat and I was feeling great right off the bat. I ditched my gloves at Mile 2. It wasn’t hot but it was SUPER sunny. There were moments that I definitely regretted not bringing my sunglasses.

Our goal was to run the first 5 miles at a 10 minute pace and try not to walk at all until at least mile 7. I’m happy to say we were spot on with those goals and looking back we both think we could have gone even faster to start off, but we were being extra cautious for our first attempt at a half. Our splits were:

5k: 32:57 (10:37 pace)

7.2 miles: 1:12:19 (10:03 pace)

Looking back at the splits, I know we could have run a bit faster, but I’ll just remember that in the next race 🙂

I think I took a cup of water at every other aid station after mile 3. It wasn’t hot out so I never found myself very thirsty. They had Powerade at every other aid station, but I never took any because I was afraid it would wreak havoc on my stomach the way Gatorade does. I also didn’t take any Shotblocks until almost mile 10. I was feeling really good and was so afraid to do anything that might throw me off.

The course was more scenic than I’d anticipated. There was a big lake that we spent most of the race running around and the scenery changed quite a bit so I felt like my mind was always occupied and it was easy to not focus solely on the distance.

I lost my Dad right at mile 10 when his knee started hurting. I barely remember coming out of the hill portion of the race but next thing I knew I was running along a fence and heading back onto the speedway. I remember checking my Garmin at some point during mile 11 and realizing that I wasn’t just going to make my fake goal of 2:30, but I was going to crush it and finish the half in uner 2:20 with time to spare! The 12th mile flew by while I savored how amazing it felt to be back running on flat pavement (like I said before, and everyone else who ran it has said, this course was hilly). As I headed into the 13th mile, that was the first time in the race that I really started to feel like I was just straight done. I was nearing that point where all I wanted to do was stop running and lie down. My right hip was really tight and my arches were getting sore and worst of all I could tell the lack of coffee was starting to affect me. No joke, I’m a legit coffee addict. Right when I felt like I was going to have to start crawling to the finish, I saw Jason running along the side of the road cheering me on. It gave me the BIGGEST boost of energy and I threw him a thumbs up and tried to speed up a bit.

Finally, I rounded that last corner and as the finish line came into view, the crowd support became out of control! I had no desire to slow down when everyone around me was cheering and yelling “Great job!” and “Almost there!”

I also saw my Mom cheering me on just a few yards from the finish and that was SO motivating!

I crossed the finish line and saw a 2:18:XX on the clock so I knew I had accomplished my secret goal that I refused to tell anyone and broke 2:20 by at least a minute and half. I WAS SO HAPPY! 

I funneled into the finisher’s area where the volunteers handed me my medal, space blanket, water, a granola bar, banana and cereal. I only ended up eatinga couple bites of banana and chugging the water. I gave the rest to my little charity case who scarfed down the cereal like he hadn’t eaten for days. After we finally found my Dad, we took a couple pictures then headed out.

Don’t worry, I’m aware that my ear warmers make me look like a total goof, but they kept my ears from falling off so I’m going to keep wearing them.

We hit up Denny’s for lunch since we were all starving. I made the mega mistake of not getting coffee because my stomach was a little queasy. This decision came to haunt me an hour later in the form of a horrible, pounding migraine. We headed home and ended up getting stopped on the freeway for 30 minutes because of a bad accident. When we finally got home, I showered and passed out for 2 hours before heading to Jason’s for a victory dinner and drinks.

Each slice of that pizza is bigger than my face! SOOOOO Good!

Overall, I think the Holiday Half was a great experience or my first half marathon. It was organized, easy to get our packets, and as stress free as I can imagine a first half being.

I’m definitely looking forward to running another soon, and Sarah told me that it gets way easier on flat courses with a lot of crowd support so I’ll be in search of one of those ASAP. I’m also considering running the Pacific Half in Agoura since it won’t require me to wake up ridiculously early and drive an hour+. And, as an added bonus, it ends walking distance from this slice of heaven:

Is anyone else planning to run any of the Great Race of Agoura runs?

What’s your favorite half marathon? I need more fun ones to run ASAP! I loved it and now I think I’m going to be hooked!

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Filed under Half Marathons

My First (Hilly) Half Marathon

Well… it came, I ran, and now I’m obsessed. You know that “Runner’s High” phenomenon that makes people go crazy and run for hours and get really sore then find themselves browsing Active for another race two hours later? Yeah, that’s real.

I ran my first half marathon yesterday – The Run Racing Holiday Half in Pomona, and I LOVED it. Despite the nasty hills and the sun being directly in my face for 90% of the race, it was such an amazing, crazy, awesome, fun, exciting experience.

I went into this race telling everyone I wanted to run it under 2:30, but that was a big fat lie. My REAL goal was to run it under 2:20 but for fear of total embarrassment failure I didn’t voice this to anyone but my Dad (who ran it too!) and Jason.

I finished in 2:18:00!! 69/150 for females 25-29. 

Not too shabby for a girl that used to go into asthma-induced fits of delusion when running the mile in P.E. I NEVER in a million years would have imagined myself doing this, but running has become one of the most rewarding and challenging experiences and I can’t wait to do at least 745 more races in my lifetime.

My Dad also ran his first half! We stuck together for the first 10 miles and he would have totally kicked my butt, but his knee started hurting really bad so I went ahead of him for the last 3 miles. He still finished in 2:20:23 even with a knee injury! We kept waiting to see him finish and eventually Jason went off to find him after I insisted it wasn’t going to take him 3 hours to finish. Turns out he finished right behind me and went off to get ice for his knee. I’m so proud of him!!

And a HUGE thanks to my Mom and Jason for coming to cheer us on and play paparazzi!! I love you both!!! I’ll have a full race recap and review as soon as I steal all of the pictures of their cameras (For the record, I really did make my mom bring her paparazzi-style DSLR with the giant lens. I don’t trust race photos, I always look like crap).

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Filed under Half Marathons, Races, Running

Half Marathon Mile Dedication – Pt. 2

If you didn’t see Part 1, you can find it here.

Mile 8:

The Jordan Family – My aunt, uncle and cousins are awesome and are basically an extension of my family. My best family memories include them, especially at Christmas. We always have the best time at Christmas Eve so I’m starting the party early by dedicating this mile to them.

Mile 9:

The Translateur Family: Jason’s family is amazing and I’m so glad to be a part of it for the past 5+ years. It’s always a great time full of laughs when they are around. And let’s be honest, they raised a pretty dang awesome son so they are rockin’ in my book. I’ll be pushing through mile 9 for them!

Mile 10:

The Fords: I’ve known Jodi since Jr. High and J has known Casey since High School and over the past couple years, these two have become some of our greatest friends. It’s so fun to have another couple around that shares similar interests and goals. It also helps when we can ship the boys off together when we want to shop or have craft night 🙂 They are two of the greatest people I know and they’re always opening up their home, fridge and wine bottles to Jason and I. And Jodi made the adorable Christmas hair bow I’ll be sporting tomorrow. Mile 10’s for you guys!

Mile 11:

My Girlfriends: Friends are the family you choose and I think I’ve chosen a great group of girlfriends. I can always count on them for a great time. My friends are amazing, and I love that they totally understand when I have to whip out my camera to take 6 pictures of my dinner for the blog. I have the BEST times with these ladies, from dinners and wine tastings to craft nights and weekend hikes, these girls are so fun and I’m so happy to have such a great group of friends to dedicate my 11th mile to.

Mile 12:

The Ragnar Team: Although I have yet to meet any of these awesome ladies IRL, I can honestly say that they have inspired me so much. Through reading all of their running triumphs and tips, I feel so much more prepared for tomorrow’s race. These girls are too freaking cool and I’m so excited to be part of a team of strong, athletic and gorgeous people! Getting trhough mile 12 is going to be tough, but I’ll be thinking of how far they have all come and will be sure to kick it a little extra.

Mile 13:

Jason: By the time I hit mile 13, I have no doubt that I’m going to be wiped out. I’ll also be SO happy to have come so far. I want to dedicate this final mile to the most amazing person I’ve ever met. Jason, I cannot tell you enough how much I love you and how lucky I feel to have you in my life. You are so special to me and you inspire me every day to live life to the fullest and most important, to be CONFIDENT. As I work through this last mile, I know my legs will be tired, I’ll probably have aches and pains galore, and I will just be ready to be done, but thanks to you, I will also KNOW that I can do it. I’m going to kick as hard as I can to get through Mile 13 and as that finish line comes into view, I’ll be thinking of you and how hard you have worked and how much you’ve done to make my life so amazing. I love you Jas!

The Last .1:

I’m not going to dedicate this final small stretch to anyone. This last tenth of a mile, where I plan on sprinting as hard as I can, is going to be all for me. I need to remember that the main reason I’m running this half is to prove to myself that I can do anything I set my mind to. I’m going to go all out and kick it through that finish line just because I want to it.

Thank you to everyone on this list and to everyone else in my life who has inspired me to try new things and taught me valuable lessons to succeed in all that I do. I love you all!

First Half Marathon – December 11, 2011

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