Thursday, December 18, 2014

Ultimate Procrastinator's Gift Guide

Hi, my name is Kate and I am a chronic procrastinator. Hi, Kate!  I work fairly well under pressure and I need a fire lit under my butt before I get anything done. For example, I haven't bought a single Christmas gift yet and Christmas is in... one week!  Same story, different year.

I know I am not the only one who waits until the absolute last second to buy gifts and then wants to pull their hair out because it's too late to ship things in time.  Amazon Prime has basically saved my life with its free 2 day shipping and wide assortment of e-books and fun finds.

I have compiled a list of what I believe are some awesome, unique gifts for all types of people. I would LOVE to see any of the following under my tree, so hopefully these last-minute ideas will save us all some unnecessary hair pulling. Happy shopping, friends!

For the Runner

Oiselle Rundies
Fun underwear for each day/run of the week. 
Lauren Fleshman's BELIEVE Training Journal
Includes training tips, helpful words from Lauren herself, pace charts and more.

1 Year Subscription to Runner's World
The gift that keeps on giving!
Garmin Forerunner 15
This would be SO exciting to open on Christmas!
Sweaty Bands
The best headbands on earth for any runner gal.
Perfect stocking stuffer.

For the Fabulously Fit Friend / Busy Mom

Eat Clean. Piss Glitter. The Book.
Quick HIIT workouts, paleo inspired recipes & hilarious anecdotes.

TRX Suspension Trainer
Work out basically anywhere. 
Great to use at home or even at the park while the kids play.

For the Yogi (or yogi-to-be)

Jade Yoga Mat
The mother of all yoga mats.

Yoga Cats 2015 Calendar
I have this in my office and it makes me smile daily. 

For Your Best Girlfriend

Taylor Swift's 1989 Album
Nothing says "Girl, you're my fave" better than T-Swift. 

For the Funny Foodie

Fifty Shades of Chicken.
Kind of hilarious.

For the Health Nut / Fit Foodie

NutriBullet Teal Blender
She so pretty!

1 Year Subscription to Women's Health
Or obviously, Men's Health. :)

Suja 3-Day Fresh Start
Help a friend start the new year with a cleanse. Contains 18 juices!

For the Coffee Lover

Upgraded Bulletproof Coffee Kit
Life changing.

Did I cover most of my bases?  I hope so! 

What would you add to this last-minute list?

Monday, December 15, 2014

Wild, Ramen, Beers, The Farmers Market & A Lucky Winner!

Let's start with the fun stuff! My friends at Thera-Gesic picked winners for my giveaway from last week.  1st prize gets a $100 Visa gift card and a 6-month supply of Thera-Gesic and the two runners up get a 6-month supply of Thera-Gesic. 

Grand Prize Winner: Smitha Arons

Runners Up: Janet Watson & Amanda Sakovitz

Congrats, ladies! I hope that brightened your day a bit.
I'm a little late to the game with talking about my weekend but that's because I've been under the weather and not up for much of anything -- even blogging. This weekend was actually very nice before I started feeling icky.

Friday: I kicked off the weekend with a hair appointment and went a tad bit blonder. :) Then I saw Wild (with Reese Witherspoon) and wow! It was just brilliant. I read the book a couple of years ago and it was one of those times where you pick up the one book you know you are meant to be reading. Every word of the entire book resonated with me and it was exactly what I needed to read in that moment. The movie had me in tears basically from start to finish. I loved it. Best movie-going experience ever: Go to the theatre with the reclining seats and sneak in your dinner from Whole Foods. It's a total game changer.

Saturday morning
: I wanted a morning to just stay in my jammies and enjoy coffee and quiet time and that is exactly what I did, unapologetically. Brittany got us coffees and I enjoyed the two latest issues of Runner's World. I feel like the magazine has been really good lately - anyone else? It seems like they've really upped their game and the articles have been different than their typical stuff.

Saturday night: Dinner at Underbelly with Teresa and a couple beers at Modern Times in North Park. Underbelly is a ramen place and it's still funny for me to eat ramen noodles at a restaurant because I will forever think of it as a 10 cent meal made specifically for broke college kids. It's always a blast with Teresa (my sole-mate) and never a shortage of conversation. 

Sunday morning: I walked to the Hillcrest farmer's market with some girlfriends and afterwards tried In-N-Out Burger for the first time in my life. Anyone who lives in CA knows how shocking it is that I've never tried In-N-Out and I've lived here over 5 years. It was good you guys, but I do not see what all the hype is about. Then again, I never eat fast food so the quality isn't great compared to what I normally eat and I obviously should have expected as much. I mean $2.10 isn't going to get you an organic kobe beef burger. Duh.

Week Highlights: I was able to run 5 days last week!! But... I still have not run over 6 miles since the NYC Marathon which was November 2nd! I have never taken this long off from long runs (unless I was injured) and it definitely feels very strange. So much has happened and life has been so busy that time has flown by and there goes my off-season in the blink of an eye! I'll be back into marathon training in ONE WEEK...already!

How was your weekend?

Is anyone running the LA Marathon?

Thursday, December 11, 2014

FRS Healthy Energy + Endurance

I am still in my "off-season" at the moment but pretty soon I will be back at it and training for the LA Marathon in March. Nutrition is something that I am always trying to master so I can perform at my best. I have definitely improved over time but still haven't cracked the code which is why I am always open to trying new products. When I was offered a chance to work on a campaign with FRS, a company that makes all-natural energy and endurance drinks, chews and powders, I jumped on it. Why not?

The patented FRS® Healthy Energy® formula was originally designed to provide sustained energy for chemo patients - so this stuff is the real deal. It uses antioxidants and vitamins that work with the body at the cellular level, unlike traditional energy products that rely on chemicals, sugar and large doses of caffeine to create energy spikes. This is sustained, all-natural energy and is scientifically proven to improve athletic performance.

I love stats so this piqued my interest immediately. I was like "sold!" and down the hatch it went. Not only am I interested in running faster and harder and longer but increased focus is also incredibly helpful because I have felt like such a dingbat at work lately. I need whatever help I can get with all the deadlines and craziness of the holiday season.

What's in it?

Quercetin (kwur-si-tin) - an all-natural antioxidant. Quercetin mimics the effects of exercise by enhancing the production of mitochondria, the energy-producing units in our cells.
Green Tea Extract - another all-natural antioxidant.
Vitamins. B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, C and E.

What's NOT in it?

Artifical Flavors.
Synthetic Colors.

As runners, our bodies are powered by hours of training and optimal nutrition. FRS products use high-quality ingredients that are formulated to help you get the most out of it—providing long-lasting energy, improved mental function and immune system support.

I was sent the Discovery Two-10 Challenge, which comes with 1 full-sized bottle of FRS concentrate (16 servings), 1 sample pack of FRS soft chews (great for long runs!), and 2 cans of FRS drink. The idea is that you drink FRS for 10 days, twice a day. I did not drink it daily but before each run to see if I noticed a difference in my athletic performance. The great thing about trying the challenge is that if you don't notice results, they'll issue a full refund.

So, what did I think??

I drank my FRS about 30 minutes prior to my runs and honestly, I felt fantastic! Since I'm not doing
speedwork right now, all of my runs are supposed to be "easy" but my pace was much, much faster than my typical easy pace. Tonight for instance, I was lying in bed waiting for my watch to charge before I ran and I was so tired that I contemplated napping instead of running. I drank my FRS and eventually hit the road. I ended up having a killer run and running an extra mile at just about marathon pace the entire way. That is just crazy to me! Obviously I can't say for sure that FRS is the reason my runs have been faster than usual and have felt easier but personally, I feel like it truly helps.

Want to try it?

I am giving away a FREE Two-10 Discovery Challenge! ENTER TO WIN - I'd love to see if it works for you.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

This post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of FRS.

Is this something you'd try?

Do you ever skip your runs to take a nap?

I admit it - I've done it a time or two. ;)

In the thick of it

The holidays are here in full force which, for me, means so many cookies, so much food, parties galore and also a sh*t ton of work (this our busiest time of the year).  This feels like the longest week of my life and I cannot wait for the weekend! Luckily, I've gotten a little bit of friend time this week to break up the craziness.

Here I am ruining a photo by trying to hug the dog.  And also notice, yet again, I'm the only one in workout clothes.  (I had to run!)

These girls are seriously as good as it gets. I'm so lucky.
much better :)

We had our company holiday party last night and I was so tired and stressed that I honestly could hardly enjoy myself. I hate when I let life get the best of me, but it happens.  On a happy note, I won this at the party (and some movie tickets and a gift card to Extraordinary Desserts)! Smoothies on the go - score! 

I never thought I'd say this, but the thing that seems to really perk me up this week is turning on the cheesiest Glee Christmas music and drinking coffee out of my red Starbucks cup!  I'm not a huge Starbucks fan but there's one about 10 steps from my office so it's super convenient and I didn't realize how happy those little red cups could make me! :) It's the littlest things...

see my yoga kitty calendar?

Another thing that is just making my days is my new running route.  I love the area of San Diego I live in at the moment and the great running it affords me.  New routes and better routes really make a difference when you've become so tired of the same old run. Can't wait for tonight's miles!!

*** DON'T FORGET: My $100 Visa gift card giveaway (sponsored by Thera-Gesic) is going on for 3 more days!! Note: Even if you've already entered you can tweet each day for bonus entries. 

How is your week going? 

Do you have special traditions this time of year?

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Pain Relief & $100 Visa Gift Card GIVEAWAY!

I decided to try a little 5 mile run on the treadmill last night before my girls' night.  After a whole entire weekend without running because of my hamstring, I was desperately craving a little running action. I figured Mondays are hard enough as it is, there's no need to take away my one tried and true stress reliever. Mentally, I needed some miles.  I stretched and rolled it out before attempting a run and I actually felt pretty good (surprisingly) so I gave it a go. Spin class was my back-up plan in case pain set in.

The sweet joy of running after a few days off. :) 

Those 5 miles felt glorious after a few days off! Rest really works wonders. Trust me on that one. There is a 99.9% chance that at any given time I am experiencing some soreness or achiness from running.  It's usually nothing serious, just your typical running related niggles. Most days it is my calves but lately my hamstrings are just killing me - so when Thera-Gesic sent me some pain relieving crème to try, I was all about it! I'm not quite sure why I never used this stuff sooner since I am always complaining about one body part or another.

I rubbed some Thera-Gesic on my tight, sore calves and hammies last night and it was such sweet relief! I also used some on my low back after my move this weekend where I was lugging heavy stuff up and down the stairs.  Ideally, someone would give me a massage every time I hurt but this is the next best thing. ;)

Typically, I use one layer on my calves and about three layers on my hamstrings.  The more layers = the more strength.  If you're not into the menthol smell you can rinse it off once it penetrates the skin but maybe I'm weird because I like the smell - I think it smells like Christmas. I use mine at night before bed because my aches and pains actually disrupt my sleep. That is honestly why I love using this stuff. It helps me to sleep through the night and all y'all know how I love my sleep.

Not only did my friends at Thera-Gesic take away my pain (and oh how I thank them) but they are also hooking one of my lucky readers up with some spending money just in time for the holidays and a 6-month supply of Thera-Gesic. I just love giving you guys stuff - it makes me giddy.

Enter my giveaway to win $100 and a 6-month supply of Thera-Gesic to help you in your athletic endeavors and all the aches and pains that often accompany them.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Do you use pain relieving gels/creams? 

Best tips for achy muscles?

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Thera-Gesic but (as always) all opinions expressed are my own.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

My Weekend Void of Running

This weekend was moving weekend for me and I am finally getting all settled into my new place. It's a nice little duplex in a great area of San Diego within walking distance to so many cute cafes and shops and a beautiful area for running.  I can run to Little Italy and get some gelato or I can run to Presidio Park and take in some gorgeous San Diego views.

the new 'hood

On my first Saturday in my new place I hopped over to Little Italy to take a class at Core40.  For those of you who aren't familiar with Core40, it a class using the Lagree Method, which I like to think of as pilates on steroids. If you read the blog Pumps & Iron you'll hear Nicole talk about B-Tone and it's the same thing.

But this wasn't just any Core40 class - Sebastian Lagree himself was in town and teaching the class. Needless to say, he kicked my ass and it was an incredible workout. 

There was a DJ along with healthy snacks and it felt like a fitness party -- my favorite kind of party.  Sebastian was introducing the new reformer which has an adjustable ramp and it looked amazing/terrifying.  Core40 in Little Italy is one of the first studios to get one so it's kind of a big deal. 

I had a lazy day afterwards and took it easy.  Sunday rolled around and my body was killing me.  I've been having some hamstring issues since prior to the NYC Marathon and they've only gotten worse. Both legs are having issues and the pain is so intense it will wake me up in the middle of the night.  No Bueno.

Luckily, one of my best friends loves power walking and is not much of a runner so I know I can always count on her to walk with me when I can't run.  We walked through Mission Hills to Presidio Park and back through Hillcrest.  We stopped at Juice Crafters and I had the most insane acai bowl ever.  It was to die for mainly because they threw some almond butter on top.  It elevated the goodness to a whole other level.

I finished the weekend off with some Love Actually and a nap.  Perfection.


How was your weekend?

Ever tried almond butter in an acai bowl?

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

My LJ Holiday Fit List! #ActiveGiving

It's officially December and the holidays are upon us which means it's time to get that shopping done! As all of you know, I am an activewear addict and I readily admit it. My wardrobe consists of more yoga pants and racer back tanks than I know what to do with but I wouldn't have it any other way. When it comes to gifts, workout clothes are always a safe bet. I think the same rings true for most fitness enthusiasts.

My favorite active apparel line at the moment is Lorna Jane. I adore everything about her clothing and I find myself wearing it over and over again even though I have drawers full of other options. I wear my favorite Lorna running tights to brunch, shopping, yoga, and yeah, sometimes I even run in them. ;) I just love how versatile everything is and it's great that they release like a gazillion new styles every single month so you don't end up wearing the exact same top as everyone else at the gym.

Side note: That's me in a full Lorna Jane get-up on the one day of the year it rained in San Diego.

The founder of Lorna Jane is a total active Aussie babe and an inspiration to fit women everywhere.

"Our vision extends beyond the product. We don't just sell activewear, we sell an active way of life. Our garments encourage women to achieve their best through Active Living and ultimately reach their full potential."

Boom. I love it! She has several books, a clothing line and a website dedicated to healthy living, I visit MNB for my daily dose of inspiration because the contributors all seem to be really rad women and they write excellent articles like this one and this one (a few of my faves).

Personally, I would be thrilled with any gift that came from Lorna Jane because there isn't a single thing they sell that I don't like. But to make your life easier I've narrowed it down to 6 fantastic items that will make excellent gifts for your fabulously fit friends.

1.) Run Short ($55.99) I love the fun colors and the pocket which is perfect for keys, gels or anything else you may need while on the run.

2.) Gaga Hooded Excel Zip Through ($89.99) Totaly adorbs, lightweight and flattering.

3.) Amy F/L Tight ($99.99) The best running tights of all time, in my opinion. Need I say more? (They're the same ones I am wearing in all the pics.)

4.) 2015 MNB Diary ($39.99) This daily planner includes seasonal recipes, space to set goals, workout ideas, and more. It's the perfect thoughtful gift for the mindful, healthy person in your life.

5.) Wake Up & Run Tank ($34.99) This is a fun and cute tank to give to your best runner friend.

6.) Medallion Excel Zip Through ($89.99) This piece is just ridiculously cute and super stylish. I'd kill for this one!

My MNB Journal

The Move-Nourish-Believe Diary comes wrapped in twine, making it the perfect gift. I've already started scribbling in mine even though it's not technically 2015 yet. I just can't help myself! It's beautiful and I love reflecting on the past and setting goals for the future which is exactly what Lorna encourages you to do in her books.

I hope this list helps you a bit with your holiday shopping. If not, at least it gave my family and friends some ideas for me. ;) Just kidding. Kind of.

Happy Holidays & Happy Shopping!

** Follow Lorna Jane on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram!

What is on your holiday fit list this year?

This post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Lorna Jane.