Allowing Myself

…to feel, to love, to be.

Tag: running

Werkin’ It Out


Back in the saddle again…

I’m back to working out and it feels aaawwweesssooommmmeee.

For some reason, I always get on an exercise kick in August. And, like I’ve mentioned before, rock climbing has become the end to the means. I want to eat well, sleep well, drink enough water, strength and tone my muscles because I want to CLIMB.

Yesterday, for the first time ever, I went to the rock climbing gym by myself. It was great. I warmed up on the stationary bike, climbed a few routes on the auto-belays and then did a HIIT workout. For the first time in years, I spent an hour at a gym.

But what is a “hiit workout” you ask?

Well, it’s high intensity interval training and it’s magical.

It’s everything I love about lifting weights and strengthening my body and most days it takes 12 minutes.


My lovely SIL who introduced me to this awesome concept explains the benefits of hiit. She got pretty ripped working her tail off (to really see results, you do have to do more than 12 min, but I’m not there and I don’t care. I feel awesome anyways). I figured if it worked for her, it could work for me.

On our Alaska trip, we worked out a few times together and she created this little hiit for us. This is also the routine I did yesterday at the gym.

And this morning, after rollerblading with the dog, I found a spare 15 min and did another one. I use the BodyRock YouTube videos.

It’s been about 3 weeks of running 2m (slow, slow, slow 2m with the dog) or rollerblading in the morning, followed by a HIIT. Or I just run. Or I run in the morning and climb later in the day. Or I skip a day and do yoga. (Free yoga at h/t my SIL again).

It sounds like a lot, but it really isn’t. I’m probably burning no more than an extra 300 calories per day and I’m not seeing a huge change physically because those calories come back in delicious adventures like my recent addiction to hot chai lattes despite the heat wave or our trip to Rita’s this week.

Where I am seeing a difference is in my energy levels. All of a sudden, I feel like I have tons of energy. Feeling healthier makes me want to eat better, so I am making good choices despite the sugary treats I’m enjoying. I’m less interested in alcohol (again, can’t climb well if you feel hungover and dehydrated). And I’m climbing better and better.

So that’s how I’m working out lately. If you’ve done HIIT before and have any advice, ideas or want to share your experience – feel free to write a comment. Cheers to good workouts!

The Value Of Mornings

Since returning from Alaska / back-to-school time, I’ve been getting up early with H. His alarm goes off at 5:40am and by 6am I’m downstairs in the kitchen feeding Carter his cup of food.

I’ve switched up my morning routine because of the heat. Usually I wake, write morning pages, feed the dog, run with him, eat/shower/dress and leave for work. But that means I could be out for a run as late as 8am and it’s just too damn hot for that right now.

Exercise is a priority, both for Carter (an exercised dog is a tired, won’t-chew-your-shoes dog) and me. That runner’s high keeps me going all day, unties stiff muscles and generally makes me a happier person. But running in the heat is bad for both of us.

So this is our routine for now: wake, feed dog / drink water, go for a run, write, get ready.

Unfortunately, most days writing gets lost, but I’m working on that.

I had this thought since getting back into the work groove – why do I feel obligated to do the work of my job outside job hours, when I never allow myself to do my personal work during job hours?


I have so much flexibility in my time and energy that it can become overwhelming – too many options, not enough parameters. But I heard Heidi’s voice in my head saying that this conundrum probably had something to do with value – valuing my time, creativity and personal work.

I’ve been actively putting my personal work at the forefront of my free time and not allowing my salaried job to spill outside of office hours. More so, I’m accepting that this is exactly what happens, and that I need to make conscious choices about what is important to me and what I want to get done with my time.

So, I’m running with the dog before the heat flares up. I’m blogging this before breakfast. I’m tying up email loose-ends and signing off for the night. I’m jotting down a poem instead of checking social media. I’m going for a run without music or a podcast.

My mornings are mine – and it’s important I use them for me. It sets a habit for the rest of the day and it refills my well. Valuing my time, and what I want to do with it, is a new practice for me – even though it’s something I’ve written about before – it seems like one of those lessons I’m meant to learn over and over again.

And it seems that right now, mornings are an opportunity for my daily practice.



Finishing up work emails and projects before our vacation tomorrow.

Rolling with the lack of routine. And up and down energy. And weird heat + humidity.

Going to the beach path on Saturdays for a run while H takes Carter on a walk via longboard, then heading to a new coffee shop called Amelia’s.

Creating more Project Life spreads – so fun to spend weekend time printing photos & playing with paper.

Buying sorely needed gym clothes, running sneakers and hiking boots. Much of the clothing and the running shoes (above) are hot pink. Not my usual color but seems to be the cheaper option most times.

Becoming more in-tuned to my over-done strength of being good in a crisis. And saying no.

Watching Orange Is The New Black Season 2

Reading All The Light We Cannot See (finished), The Giver (for fun) and books about Alaska & the Iditarod.

Quitting devaluing my own projects / creativity for things that aren’t the work I’m meant to do in this world (that’s the goal, anyways – probably will be more of a transition than cold turkey).

Learning so much about inspiration & design from the Here & There class at Big Picture Classes.

Smelling the surprise of rain in LA this weekend.


Loving having H home for summer break with time to talk and be together. And life coaching sessions with Heidi.

Working on our money goals with a financial planner. And co-working with Billye.

Eating healthier and a little less at times, trying to fuel my body with good things.

Drinking less alcohol (win) and enjoying coffee more and more lately. Like, a lot more.

Wearing my hair a bit too short. And new clothes / boots (see above).

Listening to H play video games, to the drizzle of rain outside, to Carter clickety-clacking around on the vinyl floors (he needs his nails cut).


Obsessed with AnnMarie’s blog (and baby watch) and Alaska, Alaska, Alaska, Alaska, Alaska, Alaska


Missed 2 weeks there due to my parents being in town + crappy wifi at the vacation house. The week went fast – H was down with a stomach bug and we were just coming back from family vacation and celebrating our two year anniversary. This is the first weekend in weeks where we are not scheduled by the hour and I plan on loving every empty minute of it.

My sister is a big Colbie Caillat fan. I feel a tad jealous that someone can have the looks + the voice + the songwriting skills etc buuuuuttttt I do love this story and new video: Colbie Caillat Is Tired of Being Photoshopped: Here’s What She Did About It

And if you’re into cute music videos that totally rock pop culture / hot topics by female singers who are great role models, watch Sara Bareilles help these kids get engaged:  

“To become a runner you must run. There is no other way.” – Hannah Marcotti’s post On Becoming A Runner.

Found Kyla Roma via Instagram (isn’t she the cutest??) and am loving reading through her posts and her Podcast Recommendations, but the most important thing is that she just adopted a HEDGEHOGI die.

Speaking of podcasts, listening to Tiffany Han on Elise’s podcast this week was just what I needed to hear  – Saying No to Say Yes (podcast will play in window). If I’m going to really own my time, if I’m going to prioritize what I want to do, I need to say “No” 100x more often. And remind myself that I am not responsible for anyone else but me. (Why is this so hard?!)

And this also helps, Born Hatin’: Why Some People Dislike Everything – b/c while I have a critical eye, I’m learning that there are just people who flip the f-out when presented with a new idea. More and more I feel if you’re not presenting a different idea or approach, if your criticism is not coming from a place of making an idea better, but instead to just keep us from trying something new, I have no time for you.


Seven Day Exercise Challenge

Last weekend, I decided I needed a full week of exercise. Can’t remember when I did this last. Exercise and I have had a love/hate relationship for a while now. Such a pain.

I ordered new shoes, dug up a workout DVD and got to it.

Sunday: Ran 3 miles. Felt good though I could tell my sneakers were shot.
Monday: Level 1, 30-day shred (love love love JM)
Tuesday: Ran 3 miles in my new shoes. Felt much better and ran faster.
Wednesday: So tired, but went with an easy 50min of yoga. Better than nothing.
Thursday: Ran a quick 2 miles, in the afternoon heat, after eating lunch out. Barf.
Friday: Level 1, 30-day shred again, before my flight. Already felt stronger.
Saturday: Ran 3.5 miles with my friend around her neighborhood in MA. She was dehydrated and needed to walk a bunch. B/c of either my previous workouts or her walking breaks, I felt awesome, like I could’ve done 5 miles.

Overall it was a fun challenge. Definitely worth doing and also tracking on Instagram. Grateful H was home all week, and took care of Carter, giving me time to run alone. Also, this ties to the Hello Story class I’m taking with Ali Edwards – these pics will go into my Project Life for the week. And I feel much more motivated to keep going. Hoping to run the Charles River during my Boston stay.


Shadow Pup

I am feeling much better than I was in June. Taking things one day at a time, not forcing myself to do anything major. Enjoying the summer.

This week felt too long and then sped by. Time is funny like that. Had a new trip added to August for work, and since there was nothing I could do about it, I took Carter out for a run.

A good run with a dog, with the sun just coming up, with the rest of your day laid out before you, makes for a pretty good feeling.

Hope your weekend is splendid. xo

Love Is In The Air

Our Valentine’s Day plans were actually for Saturday, though H made a good display of it on Thursday evening, it being our 7.7 anniversary.

Since I’ve started running again, Saturdays are my long run day. I went out on my own with a Paperclipping Roundtable episode loaded on my phone for the hour+ run. It turned out perfectly, as I went 6 miles total, .5 farther than I planned (Woo!!)

So I was in a pretty awesome mood when I got back home, even before I spotted the HEART-SHAPED PANCAKES!

Yes – as I said the other day – H really is getting to be quite the romantic as we get older. There he was, pancake mold, bacon and berries, being all cooked up in our kitchen. Glorious.

But wait – there was even more…

He’d bought us a scavenger hunt from Urbanquest to take us through Venice beach. We headed out for our afternoon, parking near Abbot Kinney, and stopping by the Warby Parker school bus before starting near Market Street.

It took us from a mural on Market to a side-street near the water to the beach path. It was never too hard, so it always felt fun. The worst part ended up being the combination of 80* weather, 3-day weekend and the fact that Venice is a tourist trap – it was so crowded!

Still, with a pit-stop for ice cream, we completed our quest in a little under 2 hours. Afterwards, we enjoyed the weather some more by walking down to the Venice pier to meet friends for beers. Then it was on to our favorite restaurant for Mexican food, where I promptly consumed a 26 oz margarita, jalapeno poppers and a combination plate, and then felt way too drunk to walk back to the car.

It was an adventure. And considering this was our first Valentine’s day as a married couple, I’d say my husband hit it out of the park. Love him.



Carter Cash wasn’t feeling too hot yesterday. I’m not feeling too hot today, what with a combo of muscles aches from a 5 mile run and just shelling out a lot of money in bills. Boo.

Good news: I ran 5 miles, it’s the weekend and it’s my birthday month. Not all bad. And tomorrow is the Super Bowl and right now we’re headed out for pho.

Happy weekending xo


A Lull

Today is a break – a lull – between 2 events finished and 3 to go. Between chatting with people and hosting and hustling. Between not getting to see H or sleeping deeply enough. Between a few good runs and a long run. Between me and myself.

I am doing much much better throughout all of this than I did last year. I learned a lot then, once I surfaced, and I am applying it to this experience now. I have more support. I lowered the bar. I am getting rest. I am avoiding alcohol.

But there’s still a calling of not enough time. Of wanting to cuddle with my husband, take a nap, attend the meeting, doodle a drawing, take a bath and cook dinner. And there’s still emails and phone calls and my upper back / lower neck feeling like a giant ball of a knot.

I skipped another run this week – it was pouring all day. My hope is to run 5m tomorrow, but I think 4m will be enough. I am craving orange juice.

Yesterday I pulled in my courage and my trust – the rain may ruin the event, would we have 40 or 150 people show up, would I be in trouble for spending too much, gosh my pants feel tight and some people are so rude. Would things work out?

And the answer, here, on the other side, is yes. They did work out, I was pleasantly surprised by a few interactions and overall the day looks like a success. I even paid for a woman’s tab at the coffee shop, just to selfishly up my karma.

But that doesn’t mean I’m not exhausted and ready to hide under my covers. That doesn’t mean I’m excited about the next two days. What it does mean is that I am staying afloat, which is more than I can say for last year’s chaos. Staying afloat and quietly proud of myself for doing just that.


Back On The Bike

Husband bought a bike pump and fixed my tires, so on Thursday I took this guy out for a jog / ride. He was unimpressed. I found it more annoying than relaxing because of his dragging butt. Still it’s better than nothing, for both him and I.

I’m off to run a 4.5m with a friend. Happy Saturday! xo