GBN: Week 7

This week was both hit and miss. I struggled with being overtired and under the weather. It took a lot of convincing to get myself out the door at all, let alone getting out for a run!

Not gonna lie, when I wasn’t at work this weekend, I spent the rest of the time lounging around and taking cat naps.

During the week, I worked, ran errands and attended calling hours. Not the best week. And not much motivation to run.

I didn’t get a long run in, but the runs I did do were solid and fast! I was all about speed.

Monday-Hill Repeats. There is a steep hill near our house. About  a mile away, to be exact. We walked to the hill as a warmup and then sprinted to the top, jogged back down and repeated 5 more times. The last time we jogged back down, we jogged home. This workout was tough. I had to work that night and my legs were heavy…heavy jello. They were still tight on Wednesday morning. This came out to be about 4.5 miles including warmup and cool down.


Such a nice day!


Wednesday-2.5 mile night run. The hubs and I were dying to test out our new headlamps (purchased for the Ragnar Relay, of course), so we headed out for a quick little jog. I averaged an 8:39 pace-I definitely surprised myself!

This is my “What the heck do I have on my head?” face

Thursday-2 miles during lunch. I didn’t wake up early enough to run this morning, so I decided to pound the pavement on my lunch break. My place of work isn’t in a good location for pedestrians, so I had to drive into town. I did two miles at an even 9 minute pace. I felt good and wished I could have done at least another mile, but I was short on time.


It was hot. Ick.

Overall: Like I said, this week was both good and bad. My total mileage was ridiculously low and I had trouble getting out the door, but I got some good pace-work in. I’m feeling confident about my speed but I need those long runs!

Another plus: I lost another couple of pounds and am slowing creeping out of my “skinny” pants. Weird!

You all are still totally welcome to add me on MyFitnessPal (username nre820) and send me early morning emails to get my butt outta bed in the morning! (noellesnotebook@ Any help is greatly appreciated!

Happy Running!

GBN: Week 6

Week 6 was a huge success. I got in some quality running and I am feeling stronger than ever. I didn’t get in as many runs as I would have liked, but the running I did do was high quality.

I also have some big news. I’ve mentioned that I’ll be running the Adirondack Ragnar Relay at the end of September…it’s a 193 mile relay completed by a team of 12. I am so excited for the chance to do this. But now… I have something else to train for!


It’s official!

 I did the 2009 Army Ten Miler and although I didn’t properly train for it, I managed to finish with an okay time. I am super excited for another chance to do it. Huge thank you to James Brown for the opportunity! This year, the race is 2 days before my 25th birthday. I’m considering it an early birthday present to myself.

Anyway, onto week 6!

1. Friday Morning-4.6 Miles, with hills. I was so tempted to hit the snooze, but I knew I wouldn’t get a run in if I did… so I headed out. I realized that it’s time to start training. This was one of the best runs I’ve had in a long time. It was hard, but overall it was a great run.


Smiles and sunshine

2. Tuesday night-brisk two miles.  So Tuesday morning, after waking up late, I packed a bag full of running clothes and decided I’d have to pound the pavement in the dark. The hubs and I headed to a regular running spot and did a fast two miles


So sticky.

3. Wednesday-6.3 miles. This was meant to be a bit of a recovery run, as I had pushed myself the night before. I ended up averaging about a 9:54 pace, although my last mile was much faster. I felt good. Really good.


This is my “I just ran 6.3 miles?” face.

4. Thursday-4.6 easy, with a long slow hill. My legs felt pretty tight today, so I slowed up a bit. It felt good to unwind and just… run!

I am still getting used to the new running shoes, but so far they feel good!

Total Mileage:17.5

Overall, this week was a good one. My office is currently under construction-and a bit crazy. The restaurant has been busy…and I’ve been busy, besides. With all of this, I’ve been drained and getting up in the morning has been next to impossible…but I’ve been making time to run, regardless and that is the most important part. I felt really good about all the workouts I did and am still surprised at what I am able to do.

I still want to get into the habit of running in the morning and I am going to work on picking up some speed for next week.

With another race to train for, I definitely have some new incentive.

See you next week…and happy running!


It’s Friday. The Friday after a crazy week . Finally Friday. The last thing I want to do today is work…let alone work at both jobs. But…here I am!

I’d really love to be laying on the beach right now, margarita in hand… or sitting on a patio with a bloody mary. These both sound infinitely better than working all day.

On the bright side, the hubby drove me to work AND we stopped for coffee.  It was so needed.

In other news, my waist and hips have whittled down to the point where I can take off numerous pairs of pants/shorts without unbuttoning or unzipping them, meaning that I desperately need to go shopping so I have something to hold me…

Even though I can accomplish this fancy trick, I don’t feel like I am that much thinner. I kind of feel like I am the same size. But 20 lbs is 20 lbs.  And it’s gone!

Another plus: People are actually noticing, so it must be true!

This morning I woke up approximately 50 minutes later than I had planned. What happened, Alarm C lock?! We have a standing date and you broke it!  I don’t know whether to be relieved or upset.

Even though I woke up late, I was still able to haphazardly get ready and make it to work on time… but I can’t guarantee that my hair is brushed. No big deal.

I was so planning on mailing out my foodie penpal package this morning… but I have to do it tomorrow because I left some of the items at home. Le sigh.

Our garden is out of control… I am waiting with bated breath for the avalanche of tomatoes and basil that will come in the next few weeks… we’ve gotten a few currants but I am waiting for the main event! Ah! And cucumbers… and beans … and potatoes… Yes! Life is good!

Ben made kimchi and we had it over soba noodles yesterday… it was pretty delicious but my stomach was on fire for about 4 hours after lunch. Talk about feeling the burn!

I cannot wait to soak up some sunshine tomorrow and Sunday. Bring on the SPF 50!

I also see some granola making in my future.  And napping. Definitely napping.  And running. Yes. All good things!

Happy Friday!

Better Late than Never…

So, to continue on my game of catching up…

This weekend was, in a word, phenomenal! For real. I haven’t had that much fun in a long time.

Ben and I ran the Chief Run 5k, benefitting the Wounded Warrior Foundation, with some friends on Saturday morning. It was chilly, but the sun was shining. I was nervous but the elation that came from having Ben do a race with me overshadowed anything else.

Once I got in the zone, I just kept plugging away and felt so in tune with the environment. Our times were …not great, but we ran the whole thing and we finished.

I’ve even talked Ben into doing another race this weekend!

Post Race: “Gross But Necessary” (shoutout to Pato!)

One thing I did learn? I have a lot of hill work to do. Seriously. My hips were screaming the next day, but it was worth it. It’s also time to add in some speed workouts!

After the race, we continued our weekend of fun with Cinco de Mayo celebrations, The Avengers, nachos, brisket smoking and a nice long walk. All in all it was a high-quality couple of days. We also got some good news and soaked up some Vitamin D. Win!

More catching up to come…stay tuned!

It’s Finally Friday!

Just kidding. I mean…it is Friday. But it was a crazy week-it flew by…seriously, where did it go? And why did I not accomplish 3134 of the 4231 items on my list of things to do?!

In other news, I’m pretty proud of myself; I’m down 15 lbs (11 since using mfp) and I’m ALMOST into another pair of pants I haven’t worn in a looooong time. Again, big surprise.

I’m also back to running-after I got that nasty stomache bug a week or so ago, I’ve been bad about pounding the pavement…until this week!

Also, I’m having a minor freakout-I am running a 5k tomorrow! For fun. But I haven’t run a race in a long time! I’m not expecting much time-wise (not yet, anyway!). I’m just hoping to keep my nerves down until I start the race. Gah! Seriously, thinking about this is making my stomach flip-flop and… I think I just started sweating!

Another plus about this weekend? I’m off. So is Ben. We have brisket to smoke, 5ks to run and worlds to conquer! I am pretty excited!

We also signed up to be “Foodie Pen Pals!” For more information, click the badge on my homepage. We find out who our match is tomorrow and I am completely stoked. It’s a really awesome concept and I can’t wait to join in. I love mail…I turn into a kid at Christmas when I get mail…especially packages!

Alright, over and out folks.

Have a great weekend!!!

Nice Pants!

Today has been a great day…for the most part.

I only hit the snooze button three times this morning.

My husband made me coffee…right after grinding the beans. Yum.

I made it to work on time. And didn’t dump coffee on myself.

I had a jelly donut for breakfast from a local bakery and made out with hardly any powdered sugar on my face/shirt/pants/desk. I also had an awesome lunch date with Ben.

I didn’t break anything…but I did manage to get a big black streak on my shirt while messing with the plotter… 

And something else happened that I was a little hesitant to post about… for no other reason than I thought it was silly…

 On a whim, I tried on a pair of pants that I haven’t worn in… a while… let’s say, last summer, and even then… they were a little tight…okay, uncomfortably tight. So, I put them on this morning. And guess what? I didn’t have to twist or suck in or do any weird manuevers to put them on–dont judge, I know you know what I am talking about!–They just…fit. And now, here I am, wearing these pants…that didn’t fit…and now they do.

It was a surprise. Needless to say, I’ve got some extra spring in my step today. 

Truth: I haven’t actually lost a lot of weight… overall I am down about 12 lbs…8 since really starting to use My Fitness Pal. But, I am starting to see some changes-including a little more toning… and a few other people have noticed. I actually weigh less now than I did when I got married. No big deal.

As good as it feels, I’m not looking for that approval or pat on the back from others. The biggest satisfaction is knowing that I am getting stronger every day. I’m not perfect, but I have definitely made some strides. I’m able to do more and feel good doing it. I don’t huff and puff walking up stairs and I look forward to getting out and being active.

Although I am not in the best running shape-yet!-I have some 5ks lined up in the next few weeks and am ridiculously excited/anxious/nervous/beyond pumped for the Ragnar Relay in September (BTW-if you’re in the Plattsburgh area and want to join our team, hit me up.)! I’m looking forward to pushing myself even further.

I’ve got this, and if I happen to fit into an even smaller pair of pants along the way, that’s totally okay with me.

And Then She Did Lunges… Ouch

Yesterday turned out to be a bit more productive than I anticipated…

I started out on the wrong foot; hitting the snooze button until the last possible minute. Luckily, my husband is very understanding. He got up to make me a healthy breakfast (Oatmeal with a scoop of peanut butter and a cup of coffee-to go), packed a sensible lunch (curried vegetables and black rice) and went out to start my car. I don’t know what I would do without this man.

Anyway, it turned out to be a pretty productive day at work, but when 4:00 rolled around,  I was kicking myself for not getting up earlier in the morning to run-I knew that I wouldn’t be home until 9pm (The joys of having two jobs). In short, I was feeling frustrated and angry at myself.

My reasoning?

I can eat well until  I turn blue in the face, but that alone is not going to get me closer to that half marathon. Even if I get up and walk around the office a few more times, or park further away, it’s not going to replace that deliberate act of going for a run. The fact that I haven’t been running exercising lately is starting to wear on me.

I went to my other job and thought about how this week had been a running/exercise flop. When I got home, I made a quick dinner (Annie’s Organic Mac & Cheese-sub Greek yogurt for milk-Yum!) and continued stewing.

And then, something funny happened. I just…stopped. I went into my bedroom, put on some sweats and a t-shirt and got down on my floor. Before I knew it, I was doing crunches. Then push-ups and back extensions. I even did some squats and lunges. I ended with some leg raises. And then, I did it all again. When I finished, my legs felt shaky, I banged my knee on the last set of lunges and I was sweating. But I felt good.

Ben walked in while I was doing my last few leg raises. He was a bit surprised, but it inspired him to do some push-ups and crunches, too. God, I love this man.

Today, I am sore. Walking up and down stairs is pure torture. It’s hard to bend over and my upper body is feeling a bit tender. But it was worth it. It’s a good sore that I haven’t felt in a couple of months.

I realize that this is a very small step, but it’s still that; a step in the right direction.  I know I have a long way to go, but at least I’ve started… Finally.

What are some of the at-home exercises you do? What are some of your work-out hangups?

I’ll end with some clean eating motivation, sent to me by one of my best friends in the world (via tumblr/pinterest).

Remember this.

Until next time. And remember, you can still be My Fitness Pal. Find me, username nre820.

Does Marriage Make You Fat?!

Ah…being young and in love, finding that one person who doesn’t want to change you. Getting comfortable with them. It’s such a wonderful feeling. It’s even more wonderful when you marry a chef… and have a husband who constantly tells you how beautiful you are… but then… a funny thing happens.

One day, you put on your favorite jeans and are shocked to find out that they are a bit tighter than they used to be. Or when you try on your little black dress and notice that it’s a bit snug in areas that you didn’t notice before. And then you put on your favorite sweater that hugs in all the right places…only to find that it is now hugging the wrong places, too.

Welcome to the moment where you start to ask, “what the heck happened?”

I had to laugh a couple of weeks ago when Ben made me get up to go for a walk on a chilly Saturday morning. He pulled the blankets off and said, “Come on, get up! We are going to do something… I’m getting FAT!” 

He then gave his stomach a few good slaps to demonstrate….

I hate to admit it, but I have also gained some weight since getting married. Granted, it’s not an impossible amount of weight, but it’s more than I’d like. Fifteen pounds. Typing that was painful. I think it’s even more painful because I had lost 10 pounds before the wedding.

Again, it’s not a huge amount, but it’s …a lot. I know that there are a number of reasons.

1. My activity level has gone down. I am typically an active person. The months before the wedding, I was not only working my regular job, I was also working as a waitress 4-6 nights a week and in the process of moving. This may not seem like a lot but there were many nights where I literally ran my butt off. I have sweat less during a hardcore workout in 90 degree weather.

On top of the two jobs, I was also running an average of 3 miles a day… in addition to going for walks when I had a free moment.

After the wedding… I hit a wall. I decided that sleep was more important than that morning run and soon, I didn’t even bother setting my alarm any earlier than absolutely necessary. I also started working less. The restaurant is seasonal so as the season wound down, I didn’t need to be there every day. Once it closed, I was only working a desk job until a couple of weeks ago.

2. I indulged too much. I have mentioned before, I try to eat clean and I try to eat healthy, but too much of a good thing can turn into a bad thing. I am kicking myself for all of those times when I thought “this is so good… I’ll just have one more piece/bite/scoop.” Clearly, they added up. Not that I am making excuses, but I know that this partially stems from the fact that I absolutely hate wasting food. Growing up, money was tight, so you ate what you were given. It has been permanently ingrained to clean my plate. Luckily, they have this wonderful invention called Tupperware/tin foil/saran wrap that I have (slowly) gotten better about using. Let’s hope I keep remembering this.

3. The Holidays. See Reason Two. I know, blaming the holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas!) is cliche. But seriously, I am around good food all of the time. It’s even worse during the holidays. For some reason, I thought it was okay to pig out…because it’s cold out, because I subconsciously think that I will never eat those delicious Thanksgiving/Christmas treats ever again and because I have to try everything I bake… a few times. I paid dearly for this, too. I don’t think I will be able to eat any cookies for a long time.

Luckily New Year’s Eve was a pretty good day for me food-wise and I avoided stuffing myself. I’ve been back to my food journaling ways (reminder: find me on my fitness pal! nre820) for a week or two now and am holding myself accountable for everything, including real portion sizes and water intake.

4. Winter. I started running again-and loving it!- in October but once daylight savings hit and the days got incredibly short, I basically gave up. I don’t mind running in the cold and I don’t mind running in the dark but I HATE running in a combination of the two. Being a bit low on funds at the moment, a gym membership is not in my budget, so I need to get creative.  It’s something I am working on, and it’s going to take time.

5. I stopped paying attention. This whole being newly married thing can be a bit distracting. I’ve focused on having fun and enjoying the time with my spouse, even if it is just lounging around in sweat pants all day. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but there has got to be a little bit of focus in there.  I’ve been so happy with Ben during our time together, I hadn’t noticed either one of us had gained weight.  I guess that’s why they call it “happiness weight.”

Before we got married, Ben and I were pretty active, going hiking, going for walks, running together… We are now getting back into that…slowly but surely.

6. I stopped making goals for myself. As I mentioned before, I’ve always been a pretty active person, and I’ve always had goals for myself. Most of them have not been weight related, rather, they have been fitness focused. Examples: run a 5k in under 24 minutes, bench press my weight, get through that Jazzercise routine without tripping over my feet, use a heavier set of weights, run the Army Ten Miler (done in October 2009!), you get the idea.

The last year or so, I haven’t really laid out any definite fitness goals for myself. That’s going to change. I don’t usually make definitive new year’s resolutions, but I do make goals.  One of them is as follows:

I want to do a half marathon in either April or May (depending on which race I choose). I know it’s going to be a challenge because I am going to have to train through the winter. This will mean getting up early and facing freezing January mornings. It will also mean that I am going to have to consistently increase my mileage, something I haven’t done in a couple of years.  When I officially sign up for a race, I will post the details. I’m also going to continue on my clean eating track. I want you all to hold me accountable!

With that in mind, I want to come up with a few other fitness goals for 2012. And I’ll need your help with suggestions. Feel free to post a comment with your thoughts or let me know what your goals are for the year.

In other news, I finally figured out how to add the subscribe button, so you can subscribe via email! Feel free to enter your email in order to follow me on this journey!

Oh, and also, happy new year!!!

Happy New Year!

Have a great day everyone! New post coming soon!