New Running Stuff

Last Friday was my 23rd birthday. 23 is a pretty weird age because there’s nothing particularly new and exciting about it so just just get presents for surviving another year in the real world. I suppose that’s a good enough reason for presents.

I obviously put a ton of running stuff on my wish list because I’m addicted to new workout clothes and almost all of my money at any given time goes towards running gear and groceries. Here’s are two of my favorite new things:

Brooks Pure Cadence

I’ve been running in the Brooks Ravenna 5′s for the past few months and although they haven’t been problematic, I still found myself longing for the glorious days of the Pure Cadence. I bought a pair of them in December and literally ran them into the ground but for some reason decided I needed a change of pace?

Anyway, I was excited to get back to these and my runs have already been a bit faster and more joyful now that we’ve got the band back together (the band being my feet and these shoes).

photo 1

 

Nike Shorts

The weather is getting pretty steamy here in southern California and I always feel like I don’t have enough running shorts. I asked for a pair of the Nike Rival Printed Shorts and let me tell you, they are an amazing pair of running shorts. They are a bit out of the price range that I would spend on myself but I thought I’d throw it on the birthday wish list and see what happens. They feel like soft lovely air. I’ve had them for a week and I try to save them for longerruns when I can enjoy them for a while because I’m crazy.

photo 3

I am also a huge fan of the classic Nike Tempo Shorts, they’re a great standard option and there is almost always a color on sale making them pretty affordable.

(Edit: I did a bit of browsing on nike.com and noticed that a few colors of the printed rival shorts as well as plain rival shorts are on sale)

Gift Cards

I also snagged a few gift cards to Road Runner and I think I might buy another pair of shoes to rotate with. I can’t decide on a second pair of Pure Cadences or the Saucony Fastwitch (because I’m a fast-ish witch and also they were comfortable).

 

Donuts

This isn’t a running thing but my birthday fell on national donut day so you best believe I ate some (several) donuts from my favorite spot in Burbank.

photo 4

 

 

Week In Workouts IMG

Saturday: If you can’t tell from the donut and fireball photo above, Saturday morning was not particularly easy for me but I managed a nice 3.5 mile “get your head on straight” run in the evening.

Sunday: solid 3 mile run and an ab workout in the park

Monday: Hit the gym for a legs/ arm circuit and 30 minutes on the elliptical

Tuesday: 5.4 mile run with fartleks- I felt realllly solid after this one even though I was definitely not in the mood prior to heading out the door.

Wednesday: 4 mile pub run as per usual

Thursday: 4.5 mile run, felt a bit heavy

Friday: Rest

What was your best workout this week?

What is your new favorite piece of workout gear? (what should I buy with the gift cards??)

 

In Defense Of Photoshop

I know, based on that headline anyone reading this is probably here to disagree with me. Maybe being an LA resident for nearly two years has jaded me but consider that the internet has a tendency to overreact to just about everything. I have been seeing a lot of campaigning lately against photoshop, calling all noticeably photoshopped images “photoshop fails.”

Most recently, Kate Upton’s disappearing armpit has been an issue and I understand that we should all laugh and be merry and embrace our armpit fat but with her arm positioned the way it is why are we so quick to jump to jump to the conclusion that fat is what they were photoshopping? She is displaying her stunning figure in a bathing suit and we are the ones nitpicking about weird things like armpits. Have I typed armpit enough times in this sentence?

UPTON Harpers Bazaar

I’m not a photographer but I do know that lighting, shadows, etc. are a factor and maybe an underarm shadow is what they were touching up? And why does it really matter?

The lovely ladies of Pretty Little Liars came under attack recently as well for a spread in GQ in which they appeared pretty heavily glossed up. The thing is, it’s extremely clear to anyone with eyes that the photo was photoshopped, but I don’t think that’s a problem. It was a heavily stylized spread and their poreless faces and extra bright swimsuits were a part of the look.

PLL GQ

Trojan Bellsario tweeted a photo from the day of the shoot showing what her actual body looks like and it does not appear that they slimmed her down or tweaked her shape in any way. Amping up color and lighting isn’t the problem and I think that if we lose our minds every time someone has a blemish digitally removed our heads will explode.

I do agree that it’s a problem when beautiful women are having their bodies chopped in half, it obviously creates insane and unrealistic expectations. I also think we should chill when a magazine stylizes an image or airbrushes some pores. If I can put a filter on my instagrams famous people don’t deserve to have an unfortunate pimple in a national magazine just because someone has decided that photoshop is the enemy.

Sweets Update and Week in Workouts

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was going to attempt a month sans sweets. I miraculously lasted 17 days before I found myself at a BBQ with a giant tray of cookies and a smiley face cake. How can a sane person turn down smiley face cake?

After I broke on day 17, I had a serious need for donuts and found myself stopping for a donut twice in one week because “everything else was pretty healthy.” I’m not beating myself up over a series of blips that happened in the second half of the month but aside from my birthday, I’d like to give it another go in June.

Not a new pic but same donut. Seriously the best. If you're ever in LA I'll point you in the right direction.

Not a new pic but same donut. Seriously the best. If you’re ever in LA I’ll point you in the right direction.

I know that eating dessert every now and then is good for morale but I find myself treating myself for no good reason way too often and I always have that rockin sugar hangover the next day. I’m not going to go crazy but my sweet tooth is definitely above average and I need to get that under control, man.

Week In Workouts IMG

 

Saturday: Yoga

Sunday: Live Ultimate 5k + 1 mile cool down

Monday: 15 minute row, 25 minute swim

Tuesday: First hill run/ long-ish run in quite a while. (7 miles w/ Fryman Canyon in the middle)

I realized that I hadn’t done hills, trails, or a run longer than 6 miles in at least a month so I decided to combine it all into one workout. Maybe not my wisest decision, I felt it for at least two days.

Wednesday: 4 mile pub run

Thursday: Elliptical, Weight Liftin’

Friday: 5 mile run

I barely slept last night because I’m panicking a bit over the mountain of stuff I have to knock out during a very small period of time today. It’s one of those things where everything is happening at once and can’t be moved so the morning is chill and the afternoon is a monsoon. By the time I dragged myself out of bed my legs were like lead but Im glad I got the run out of the way even if it was a rough one.

How do you handle having to do 1,000 at once?

Do you have a mega sweet tooth or a baby sweet tooth?

Live Ultimate 5k

Saturday I headed downtown bright and early to participate in the Live Ultimate 5k. I had some mixed goals for this race, I never run 5ks so I wanted to push myself and score a nice PR but I also wanted to enjoy memorial day weekend, hockey playoffs, and other shenanigans so I didn’t really prepare for the race at all.

The night before the race I was at a local bar watching the Blackhawks game. I only planned on having a drink or two but the game went south and pity drinks were in order. I also had french fries for dinner.

Live Ultimate 5k Start

The morning of the race, packet pickup was super simple, no line. It was also at LA Live (Staples Center, Nokia Theater, etc.) so parking was easy as well and the race got started right on time. Rather than a 5k and a 10k there was a “quarter marathon” option which is 6.55 miles.We all started at the same time and my only qualm is that they didn’t really explain to the crowd how to line up meaning the first quarter mile or so was crazy congested. Walkers didn’t realize that they should probably have started in back and I was dodging them like crazy.

Since I was definitely feeling the shenanigans from Saturday night, I had planned to push through mile 1 and see how I felt. My PR is technically 34 minutes so my only goal was to break 30. I managed to keep a faster-than-typical-ashley pace for the first two miles then struggled a bit at the beginning of mile 3 but once the Staples Center was in sight I kicked it into gear again and crossed the finish line in 27:22.

According to my garmin, splits were 8:34, 8:51, 8:57, 1:07 (for the last bit) and I was definitely pleased with my time. I’d like to break 27 in the near future but a 7 minute PR on the 5k is okay by me!

Bof_UT5CYAAbDlk

There was great swag at the finish line and I got the chance to finally meat Gillian from That’s G in person!

I topped off a great day with my first ever cemetery movie. If you ever visit LA in the summertime I highly recommend checking the screenings. The historical Hollywood Forever cemetery shows movies every weekend and people bring picnics and it’s amazing. I saw Almost Famous which may be my favorite movie ever and Cameron Crowe (the writer/ director also of Say Anything, Jerry McGuire) showed up to introduce the movie and I had a geek attack.

Hollywood Forever Cameron Crowe

Have you ever watched a movie in a cemetery?

What is your goal for your next race?

New Podcast Favorites & Week In Workouts

Happy Friday! This week has been a super sweaty one- not because of particularly intense workouts but because it has been in the 90′s and even the low 100′s here in LA and I have actually recently melted so I’m typing up this post as a pile of melty goo.

Many of you know that I’m obsessed with podcasts. I love to listen to them when I walk to work, they’re great for hiking, and they’re perfect for runs without speed goals. Sometimes when I have a certain goal for my pace I need music to get my heart pumpin’ but for long slow runs and recovery runs I love getting lost in someone else’s conversation.

Podcast Favorites

I listen to mostly comedy podcasts because listening to workout podcasts while I work out feels redundant and also I feel like those podcasts are a lot drier and don’t entertain me nearly as much.

Put Your Hands Together

I’m a huge standup comedy fan and this podcast is literally just a broadcast of a standup show in LA on Tuesday nights. I haven’t made it out to the real show yet but there is always some amazing up and coming talent as well as some favorites who you would definitely recognize from the television.

The JV Club

Janet Varney chats with some really cool comedians and actors about what they were like in high school and at the end of the episode they play MASH. It’s pretty cool to hear the origin stories of these interesting and creative people.

U Talking U2 To Me?

Two of my favorite funny guys, Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) and Scott Aukerman (Comedy Bang Bang) talk about my favorite band, U2. It’s great.

More of my favorite podcasts

My Week in Workouts

Week In Workouts IMG

Saturday: 6 mile run

Sunday: 25 minute swim and ab workout

Monday: 4 mile run

Tuesday: 5 mile run

Wednesday: 4.5 mile pub run

It was probably 100 degrees when we started and ohh man it was a nasty taste of what running this summer is going to be like.

Thursday: Elliptical and Leg/ Ab circuit

Friday: Either a rest day or 3 miles depending on how I feel after work

What was your best workout this week?

Are you a podcast person? What are your faves?

Thinking About Blogging

Happy Thursday guys!

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about blogging. As you may or may not have noticed, my blogging, tweeting, and overall internet presence has diminished greatly over the last few weeks. It’s not that I don’t like blogging, it’s just that I have been realizing lately how much nonsense it can be sometimes.

I have spent the past few months really trying to step up my game in both personal fitness endeavors and growing the ol’ blog. I’ve also been picking up a few more hobbies recently and I realized that my plate is really starting to fill up.

I thought about which aspects of my life were important to me and fitness blogging isn’t really up there. I still like working out and running and whatnot, but I’ve realized that blogging has given me a bit of a distorted view on my fitness goals and expectations and I don’t really like it.

I may still pop in with weekly recaps, week in workouts, etc. but posting almost daily is more work than I realized until last week when I stopped doing it.

I’ll still be around, mostly on my other twitter which you can follow here.

See ya later!