Five Things Friday

1. Winner Winner Chicken Dinner! Tiina, you won the Suddora Sweatbands giveaway from earlier this week!  Congratulations! BTW – Tiina runs an awesome blog called One Crazy Penguin.  You should check it out!

2. Chicago Runners:  I’ve started leading runs at Tri-Factive, the chiropractic place I love so much!  If you’d like to join us for a monthly fun run, the next one is on Tuesday November 4, and are based out of their place in the Roscoe Village area.  Join us not only for running, but a dynamic warmup, chair massage, and drinks afterward!  You can RSVP on Meetup. I look forward to seeing you there!

3. I have amazing more amounts of time, mentally & physically now, and I’m super excited.  I hope you see it in my broadening of the blog posts, like the organization series I am starting up.  If you didn’t read about it, check out my first post on how I’m decluttering my home!

4. I made some pumpkin chili yesterday that I was really looking forward to.  I mean, what does not scream fall except for pumpkins? Well, it didn’t really turn out.  I mean it’s chili, but it has a flat taste even though I followed the recipe.  #pinterestfail


5. I’m super excited to be going to a blogger cooking class this weekend at Whole Foods Northbrook!  It’s about plant-focused nutrition, which I really need to focus on since I am apparently loving to forget a veggie when I make meat dishes.  It’s happened the last two times now.  I’m good at curry/soup/stews, and meat dishes without any veggies.  Time to expand my cooking repetoire… #WFMPlantProteinParty

I’m linking up with KatieHeather, and Clare to celebrate Friday, so head on over to their blogs to join the fun!

An Organized Life: 40 Bags in 40 Days

I mentioned last week that I am working on getting myself more organized.  Since this is something I feel like I’m constantly working on, I’m going to start a semi-regular series to share my organization tips & experiences.  Hopefully you like it!

An Organized Life

I’m focusing on two areas for right now:

1- Getting on track with nutrition, fitness & weight management.   I’ve started meal planning, tracking my food intake on My Fitness Pal, and working toward getting to my Happy Weight.

2 – Getting my home organized!  Mike & I would like to move sometime soon-ish, and we know it’s going to be a b**** to pack & move. So I’ve started with working to clean through purge, and organize things.

See, I have this thing where I don’t like to throw stuff away.  I like saving magazines, books, and clippings.  Information-wise, I’m starting to get used to cataloging things in Evernote, and using my Kindle & iPad instead of buying books.

However for the “Stuff,” I’ve started on a “40 bags in 40 days” project.  Each day for 40 days, I am going to clean through one section in my home and get things organized, and hopefully purge a lot!

I got this idea from Little Lucy Lu.  Her list is nicely handwritten, but I’ve typed mine out (and filed in Evernote):

  1. Entryway bags
  2. Junk Drawer in downstairs bathroom
  3. Other downstairs bathroom drawers
  4. Utensil drawer in kitchen
  5. Hard-to-reach cabinet in kitchen
  6. Pantry
  7. Kitchen cupboards
  8. Under the kitchen sink
  9. Refrigerator
  10. Living room bookcase
  11. Wedding gift corner
  12. Window sills
  13. TV cabinet
  14. “Bags” baskets
  15. Nightstand drawers
  16. Bathroom drawers
  17. Bathroom basket
  18. Bathroom counter & shower
  19. Sock drawer
  20. Other dresser drawers
  21. Underbed storage (my bedroom)
  22. Closet (guest bedroom hangers)
  23. Closet (guest bedroom containers)
  24. Closet (guest bedroom floor)
  25. Closet (my bedroom accessories & shoes)
  26. Office desk drawers
  27. Guest bedroom floor
  28. Wicker storage basket (bedroom)
  29. Books in upstairs shelves
  30. Upstairs shelves – other
  31. Car trunk
  32. Car (main space)
  33. Medals
  34. Shoes (in living room/ entrance)
  35. Kitchen Cupboards (pots/pans)
  36. Bonus
  37. Bonus
  38. Bonus
  39. Bonus
  40. Bonus

40 Bags in 40 DaysAny other suggestions on getting the home tidied?  Any spaces you think I may have missed? 


Training Tuesday: Winter training plans

I’m pretty much back in the game now from my post-Ironman recovery.  I have to say, recovering from Ironman isn’t just a physcial thing, it’s a lot mental as well.  What to do with my time?  Thinking in certain ways.  I tried to do some grad school coursework and found it very challenging to put my attention toward the analytical thinking required (when I still wanted to work on moving my body… and keeping a job).  I also found reigning in my appetite to be more challenging than I’d expected as well!  I’m about 7 pounds higher than my weight the week of Ironman.  I hope to drop that and a bit more soon.

Grad school is back on hold while I pursue my Ironman dreams.  So what am I doing this winter?
Running my heart out.  
I want to break 2 hours at the half marathon, and work on my running durability.  I need to be able to run when I don’t want to, and when I’m tired, to cut time off at Ironman Wisconsin.  Really this happens mostly by running frequently.
I did the Hero 10K this past weekend, and am going to keep working on getting back up to half marathon distance, and getting faster.  I’ve got the Perfect 10 (10-miler) on November 8, and the Schaumburg Half Marathon Turkey Trot just after Thanksgiving.  I don’t think I’ll be at goal-breaking shape by then, but I’ll push myself to the pain zone!
 what i feel like when i run
Getting Stronger. To get faster, I need to get stronger.  Push more watts on the bike, push off faster on the run.  Pull more on the swim.  Not get as tired so frequently.  I’m starting crossfit, at least for a few months to get stronger.  As the official IMWI training starts (in February), I’ll pull back, but hope to keep up my strength with once or twice weekly workouts for as long as I can handle. And crossfit seems like fun… doesn’t it?  :-)
Losing Weight.  To go faster, I also need to drop some pounds. I have a number in mind, although if I can drop the excessive visible fat and gain muscle, I’d be ok with adjusting my weight goals.  Clearly the above two focuses also help, but I am also trying to work on nutrition.  I’ve gone back to some nutritional focuses that I’ve had before – eating mostly paleo, and also gluten-free.  I don’t think I’ve blogged about it, but I generally feel better when I limit gluten.  So that’s going in.  I’ve been trying these things and meal planning for about two months now, and unfortunately the scale isn’t budging.  So for November I’m stepping up the game, and trying an Advocare 24 Day Challenge!  Becky from Olives’N’Wine is hosting one, so I’m going to particiipate.
What are you up to this fall and winter?