aquamermaid_chicago

Swimming Like a Mermaid [Fitness Friday]

Fitness

Several months ago I was invited to check out AquaMermaid Chicago. After seeing it on several other blogs I was VERY interested! A swim workout that is as much about play as it is about swimming? Yes, please. Even though I’ve done several sprint triathlons, swimming is still not my favorite. But playing around in the water? I’m totally down with that. It took us a while to find a date that worked, but once we did I was IN!

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Photo courtesy of AquaMermaid Chicago

(that’s me in the pinkish red tail!)

The lessons currently take place at the UIC student rec center on their west campus which is just an easy Divvy bike ride from me. It was really chilly the day I went, though, so I was happy that Emily joined me and that she drove. I didn’t really factor in biking home with wet hair!

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Thanks to Emily for the photo!

I fully admit that the logistics of putting on a mermaid tail are a bit weird and it took the instructor a bit to get around to helping all of us. If you go, be sure to get there early! But not too early (like me) since they tend to have classes back-to-back and you might be standing around awkwardly for a bit.

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First you put your feet into the fin and adjust the straps around the backs of your heels. I have weird feet that are wide at the front and super narrow in the back so I struggled the whole class to keep my fin on! They recommend that if you have smaller feet to wear water socks or neoprene booties. I wish I’d had some. They might have helped.

Anyway, once you have your fin adjusted you actually take your feet out and pull on the tail. It has a zipper on the bottom that you then put the fin into, place your feet in the fin, and zip it up. Ta da! You’re now a mermaid!

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A mermaid who wears goggles. And a nose clip. But still a mermaid!

Once you’re in the water you basically have to learn to swim with your core and your legs. After spending two years trying to learn how to swim WITHOUT using my legs as much, this was quite challenging for me. I started to get the hang of it right at the end but, man, it was more difficult than I expected.

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Photo courtesy of AquaMermaid Chicago

We learned to swim through hoops underwater, do somersaults and underwater flips, and, of course, handstands. If you take more classes  you eventually learn to do some synchronized swimming as well as some more advanced tricks.

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Photo courtesy of AquaMermaid Chicago

One of which should be how to take a good underwater photo. This was our best attempt.

Anyway, this was a fun thing to try! Especially if you love being in the water but hate swimming laps. They do classes for all ages, too, so if you have nieces (or nephews!) this would be a fun thing to do with them.  If you’re uncomfortable in deep water they have pool noodles to help out or you can just ask to stay in the shallow end.

If you’re interested in learning more, you can visit AquaMermaid Chicago on Facebook,  Instagram or on their website. You can even buy your own mermaid tail!

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Thank you to AquaMermaid Chicago for having me! And, yes, they let me take the class free of charge but all opinions are my own.

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A little behind on my marathon training summaries, so here’s two weeks in a row.

  • Monday 11/21 – 6 mile run + lower body strength workout
  • Tuesday 11/22 – Upper body strength workout
  • Wednesday 11/23 – 4×800 treadmill run + lower body strength workout
  • Thursday 11/24 – 6 mile run
  • Friday 11/25 – 3.5 mile walk
  • Saturday 11/26 – 12 mile run
  • Sunday 11/27 – Rest
  • Monday 11/28 – 6 mile run + lower body strength workout
  • Tuesday 11/29 – Upper body strength workout
  • Wednesday 11/30 – 8×400 treadmill intervals (6 miles total)
  • Thursday 12/1 – Upper body strength workout + 6 mile run
  • Friday 12/2 – Lower body strength workout
  • Saturday 12/3 – 14 mile run
  • Sunday 12/4 – Rest
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Favorite Outfit of November

Casual Friday · Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

For the past few months Jason and I have been trying to have a date night of some kind each week. However, recently our date nights have consisted of viewing apartments, townhomes, or duplexes that have garage space where Jason can work on his car.

Yes, there’s a really good chance we’ll be moving out of Chicago’s West Loop. This makes me sad but I’m trying to look forward to a discovering a new neighborhood. Our plan is to stay in the city, though. Our lease isn’t up for several months, however, so I’m a bit stressed about what happens if we find a great spot but can’t find someone to take over our lease.

Speaking of which, anyone want to rent an awesome condo in the West Loop?? I’m not kidding.

Anyway, when we weren’t looking at places, I kept busy doing other things. Such as…

  • Attended the Illinois Science Council Cocktail Party
  • Took our second welding class
  • Watched Jason at his last car race of the year
  • Sat on a panel for a friend’s class (he’s an adjunct professor)
  • Started looking at new apartments/townhomes/duplexes
  • Had dinner at our neighbor’s while listening to actual vinyl records
  • Learned to swim like a mermaid (post coming soon!)
  • Celebrated Thanksgiving with both our families
  • Finally made it to a Moonfish pop-up shop
  • Kept up with my marathon training and weight lifting

And, of course, wearing outfits. Below are this month’s choices for your voting pleasure. My favorite is probably the cold-shoulder top outfit. Although I’ve now worn the purple sweater outfit at least three times. So, that one wins for comfiest!

What’s your pick? Don’t forget to vote below!

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1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

 

What was your favorite outfit of November?

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SIA: Sunset on 2016

Style Imitating Art

Jen‘s pick for our last Style Imitating Art challenge of 2016 is Edward Hopper’s “Railroad Sunset“. This seems appropriate for two reasons. One, it’s the end of the year and metaphorically we’ll be seeing the sunset on 2016 very soon. And two, she started off the year with a painting titled “Sunrise“.

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“Railroad Sunset” by Edward Hopper

We’re getting into the season of year-end round-ups and top 10 lists and all of that stuff. I know you’ll see a lot of the same type of posts on blogs and websites, so is there anything in particular you’d like to see from me? I’m open to all your ideas!

In the mean time, if you want to participate in this final SIA challenge for 2016, just snap a photo of an outfit inspired by this painting (selfies and flat lays are fine, too) and send it to librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com by Monday, December 12th. She’ll feature the round-up on her blog on December 13th.

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Just a sweater and some leggings

Casual Clothes · Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall

So, I fully admit that I think I blew my entire plan to save money by not shopping when I went to the Moonfish Pop-Up shop earlier this year. You already saw my black top, jeans and necklace, but I also purchased this amazing sweater. Because, you see, when I told Sarah that I didn’t own anything to really wear with leggings she basically refused to let me leave without trying it on. And, of course, I loved it.

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Sweater – LA Made via Moonfish | Leggings – c/o Moonfish | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same

It’s so soft and cozy and….long. So, yes, it covers my butt. And, yes, I’m wearing leggings as pants. But, as I mentioned the last time I wore these leggings, they’re structured enough to feel like skinny jeans.

This sweater can also be worn off-the-shoulder, but that always feels kind of awkward to me. So, instead, I’m sticking with the cowl neck that is just slouchy enough to be comfy but not so crazy as to be overwhelming.

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However, it turns out that my office at work cranks the heat near my desk when it’s cold outside! So, for once, I won’t necessarily be bundled up all winter. I’m sure, though, I’ll find enough opportunities to wear this sweater. I mean, wouldn’t you?