Friday Favorites Christmas Edition!

Since its 2 days before Christmas I wanted to give you some of my Christmas favorites for 2016.

1) Our Table Top Christmas Tree

This year, Brian and I were unable to buy a regular Christmas tree for our apartment because Lola wouldn’t have any room to run and play as well as she would probably break the ornaments on the tree. So we decided this year to get a Table Top Tree at Whole Foods which has worked out really well for this year of transition.

2) Our Gingerbread House Tradition

Ever since Brian and I started dating we have made a Gingerbread house for the center of our kitchen table. This year will be difficult to put it there since our Table Top Christmas Tree is there.


3) Starbucks Red Cups

I thought it was fun that this year Starbucks took drawings from the red cups from the previous year and made them into the cups for 2016. It’s fun too because every time you go into Starbucks you never know what design you will get.

Oh I just love red cup season!

4) Christmas Tree Smelling Candle

I love this candle, it makes our apartment living room smell like Christmas! You just smell the pine of a Christmas tree throughout the room when it is burning. It makes the living room feel very cozy and warm.


5) Wawa Holiday Blend Coffee

For all you coffee lovers out there like me, last year, Brian and I discovered this new blend of coffee from Wawa. It is amazing when you put hazelnut creamer in it. If you live by a Wawa Market you should try it!!!

6) Lola’s first visit to Santa

We took Lola to see Santa (Paws) at the dog park to tell him what she wanted for Christmas.

She asked for more squeaker toys and a new antler.


What are some of your favorites this holiday season?

2016: Week 50 Recap

Monday, December 12th

It was pouring rain at 5:00am so there was no way I was getting out of bed. So I had to push my run to the afternoon.

img_6817I went for a 3.17 mile run on the Radnor Trail. I had negative splits and was really glad to see where I was during this run.

Tuesday, December 13th

Decided to wait till the evening to run and have a gym date with the hubby. We did that a lot while we were dating and wanted to bring it back.

3.15 miles on the treadmill

Wednesday, December 14th

3.23 mile run around Wayne

Thursday, December 15th

Rest day

Friday, December 16th

4.10 miles on the treadmill. To cold to run outside! And some strength training!


Saturday, December 17th

Ugly Sweater 5k!!!!!!!

I was excited with my time given the conditions of ice and slush all over the course. I finished in a 30:16 with an average pace of 9:46.

Sunday, December 18th
Rest Day

How did your work outs go this week? 

 

2016: Week 49 Recap 

Monday, December 5th

4 miles at Wilson Farm Park and strength training at the gym.

Tuesday, December 6th

3.24 miles around Wayne 

Christmas is coming!!!!

Wednesday, December 7th

3.11 miles around Wayne

Now I know where to put my letter to Santa!

Thursday, December 8th

Rest day

Friday, December 9th

4 mile treadmill run, just couldn’t bear running out in the cold and wind. 

Saturday, December 10th

5.25 mile run

Sunday, December 11th

Rest day from running but did some strength training at the gym. 


How were your workouts this week?

2016: Week 48 Recap

Monday, November 28th

4.17 miles around the neighborhood on a chilly morning! 

Tuesday, November 29th

Rest day.

Wednesday, November 30th

3.17 miles on the treadmill along with some strength training. I didn’t feel like running in the rain. 
Thursday, December 1st

5.02 miles with the Conshy Running crew! Couldn’t believe I had an average pace of 9:02 and felt amazing! Need to keep running in groups!


Friday, December 2nd 

3.23 miles around the neighborhood 

Saturday, December 3rd

Rest Day

We took Lola to see Santa Claus after he dog park and got our Christmas tree. Since we are in the process of potentially moving we didn’t want to get a large one this year so the table top one will do for now. 


Sunday, December 4th

Another rest day. I just needed a mini break this weekend. Sometimes you just need those! 

Philadelphia Half Marathon Race Recap

I was really exited for this race weekend to come because race weekend 2012 was when I fell in love with running. I ran my first Philadelphia Half Marathon and I was hooked. I loved the thrill of the challenge and I couldn’t believe I did it that I wanted to do it again as soon as possible. That day changed my life.

It was a little bit stressful going to pick up my bib downtown because I was coming straight from a work meeting in Maryland and had to grab my bib quickly then head home on Friday afternoon. I was disappointed because I didn’t have any time to stay at the expo and look at the vendors which is something I usually enjoy doing when picking up bibs.

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I always love walking through the signs into the expo. It gets you a little bit more pumped for the race. img_6591

I got my bib and I am ready to go. This will be my 4th Philadelphia Half Marathon but my 5th time running a race that weekend. The difference this year is that the half and full marathons have both been running on Sunday, at least since I have been running them. But this year they changed the course of the half marathon and made the half on Saturday and kept the full on Sunday with a slight course modification. Where as the half had pretty much a HUGE change to it. It usually runs mostly through the city and this year it was running mostly in Fairmont Park (which made it a lot more hilly rather than flat).

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I had a hard time deciding what I was going to wear for the race, mainly for my top. I was planning on wearing a red Lululemon long sleeve but I asked Cecily Tynan from Action News on Facebook Live what she would recommend and she said a tank top and shorts because it was going to be a high of 70 degrees on race day which is abnormal for mid-November. So since I usually run races in leggings because of chaffing and what not I decided to switch from a long-sleeve shirt to a t-shirt.

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The hubby dropped me off at the start early in the morning, he decided to not run the race after the marathon because he had hurt his knee and didn’t want to risk injuring it more. So I ended up arriving at the start around 6:00am and went through security which was near the Art Museum.  img_6609

I was in the Green Corral because in May when I signed up for the race I was hoping to go for a PR during the but I was expecting the old flat course and wasn’t injured at the time of signing up the race. So I had big plans for this day but I decided I would still start at the perspective corral and see what happens.
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I love all the city views that you get wherever you are throughout the course of the race. You can always get great pictures of the skyline around the Art Museum. This was the city looks like at 6:00am. 
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I have figured out throughout my time racing that my body feels full and reacts well to bagels as my pre-race meal. So I ate an everything bagel about an hour before the start of the race to fill my stomach. img_6615

The Philadelphia Skyline in the dark. Not a bad view to look at right?

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This is where the new finish line was located. Usually the start and the finish are in the same place but because of the newly designed course they were separate from each other. It was nice because you were able to clearly see it once you got around the Art Museum on Kelly Drive and sprint to the finish.

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I was honestly a little nervous at the start. I hadn’t run anything longer than 5 miles since the Marine Corps Marathon 3 weeks prior but I knew that I could handle it. I was just getting myself stressed out for no reason. But I was excited to finally get the race started. img_6620

The weather was beautiful for the race. We started out running a little bit through downtown Philadelphia through Chinatown and around Independence Hall/Love Park, then headed back down toward the Art Museum down Martin Luther King Boulevard and then started the trek through Fairmont Park. The huge hill that is usually around mile 8 was at mile 5.5 this time around, I knew how to handle this hill so I kept pumping my arms to make myself stronger getting up it. I hate it when my running flow is halted due to LARGE hills.

Then we ran around the Please Touch Museum and back through the Strawberry Mansion area and there were a couple of HUGE hills there. Those hills I have never ran before at around mile 7-8 and I honestly don’t know how I was able to get up them. The plus side was that after you got up the hill you looped back around and that was all downhill (it was a turn around basically).

Then you headed back through the rest of the park and turned onto Kelly Drive which was the last mile. I had run that portion of the course so many times in various training cycles I knew exactly how to pace myself to finish. Once I reached the beginning of Boathouse Row I knew I could start to push it a lot more. The hubby was at the middle portion of Boathouse Row giving high fives and encouragement to runners so he decided to run to the finish with me. He kept on encouraging me to push harder and that I was doing so well. Once I got around the Art Museum and saw the finish I sprinted as fast as the could and crossed the finish line with a very exhausted smile.

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After the race, the hubby did what he promised and took me to Pizza Hut to get a Large Pan Pizza (my favorite) and tradition post race meal.

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I couldn’t wait to get home and dive into it! I honesty didn’t want to share with the hubby because I was so hungry but because he got me breadsticks as well I was nice about it.
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Like my husband said to me, he couldn’t believe how well I did especially after running the Marine Corps Marathon 3 weeks earlier. It showed me that I have been making progress in the half distance and that when the conditions are right I really can surprise myself.
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2016: Week 47 Recap

My fall race season has come to an end. It is nice to sit back, relax, and run how my body feels. No pressure on my runs. 

Monday, November 21st

3.12 miles on the treadmill and leg strength training 

Tuesday, November 22nd

Ran 3 miles through the neighborhood with Lola for the first time. I hope to make her a nice running buddy. 

Wednesday, November 23rd

Rest day!

Thursday, November 24th

I did my own 5k Turkey Trot around the hubby’s childhood neighborhood. 

Happy Thanksgiving from the Catton’s!!!


Friday, November 25th

A run day turned into rest day due to some tummy problems. 

Saturday, November 26th

Rest Day – walked around the mall with the hubby doing some Christmas shopping.

Sunday, November 27th

4.21 mile run around the neighborhood. 

So excited that Christmas decorations are going up!

How were your work outs this week?

2016: Week 46 Recap

This week I spent time relaxing on my runs as I was preparing to run the Philadelphia Half Marathon at the end of the week. So I was taking my runs easy and enjoying the miles. 

Monday, November 14th

5k around the neighborhood before 6:00am, loving those peaceful morning miles. 

Tuesday, November 15th

5k on the Radnor Trail. 


Wednesday, November 16th

An ugly 3.5 mile run. It Just didn’t go well but we all have those days and we need to bounce back.


Thursday, November 17th

2 miles early in the morning.

Friday, November 18th

Rest day – picked up my bib for the Philly Half.

Saturday, November 19th

13.4 miles running the Philadelphia Half Marathon. It was the 10th half marathon I have completed in 4 years of running! 

Can’t believe that I ran it in a 2:10 after finishing a full marathon 3 weeks ago! 

Sunday, November 20th

Rest day!

The Philadelphia Marathon was happening and I wanted to post a pick of me after finishing my first full marathon last year in Philadelphia. 


Did you race this weekend? How did you do?