may-goals

Five Goals for May

About Me

may-goals

Every year about this time I think “Yay, summer!” And then I remember I live in Chicago and we don’t get consistently get summer for another month. So while I’d like to make one of my May goals to go for drinks on a patio or rooftop, well, I think I’d better save that one. But before we get to my May goals, let’s see how I did on my April ones, shall we?

April Goals

  1. Actually study one chapter a week of my NSCA book – Ha! Well, this one certainly didn’t happen. I’ve gotten to chapter 6 of….24, I think? It’s just a LOT more science and physics than I was expecting. However, I did take one of the practice tests and did better than I did the first time I took it. So there’s that.
  2. Get my overhead press into the triple digits for my one rep max – This one didn’t happen, either. I did manage two reps at 65 pounds which, considering my previous one rep max was 70 pounds, means I’ve definitely increased my strength. Slowly but surely I’ll get there!
  3. Take clothes to the consignment shop – I took a bunch of items to the consignment shop and they took 5 of them. The rest are being saved for fall or got dropped at Goodwill on my way home. Score!
  4. Read another book – I finished A Beginner’s Guide to Paradise: 9 Steps to Giving Up Everything and really enjoyed it! It’s a nice mixture of light hearted reading and actually thinking about what you’re doing with your life. I’d recommend it.
  5. Try a new brunch restaurant – Yep! Sarah from Windy City Wanderlust helped me complete this one with our trip to The Publican.

So what do I want to make happen in May?

  1. Complete at least two more chapters in my NSCA book.
  2. Play one of the new board games I just bought (my coworker recommended Castle Panic and Red November so I bought them both).
  3. Go to dinner at a new-to-me restaurant in my neighborhood. If I get to sit outside all the better! I’m thinking MAD Social. Anyone want to join me?
  4. Run a mile in under 7 minutes. I’d like to see if I can do it at 9.0 MPH on the treadmill. That’s a 6:39 mile, I believe. 
  5. Read another book. I just got Pretty Girls for my Kindle and I’d like to actually start (and finish) it!

How about you? What do you want to accomplish in May? Maybe voting for your favorite outfit from April? Hint, hint.

april-looks

Favorite Outfit of April

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Here we are at the end of another month! Time for a quick recap of the fun things I did before we get to picking our favorite outfit from the past 30 days or so.

Let’s see….what did I accomplish in April?

And I’m sure other stuff I’m forgetting. I am super swamped at my day job right now and, while I love to be busy, it does leave my brain pretty drained by the end of the day!

So, let’s move on. Favorite outfit of April? Well, to be honest, I struggle with spring weather. I also struggled getting outfit photos consistently. In a way, I feel like maybe the outfit I loved the most didn’t get photographed. So, instead of being the best outfit of April, this is just a tribute.

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Even though I said this jacket made me feel a little bit like a linebacker, I just keep gravitating towards this outfit when I look at the pictures. Whether it’s the red or the pattern mixing or just that I remember being comfy when I wore it, this outfit stands out as my favorite for the month.

So, now, what’s yours? Don’t forget to vote below!

april-looks

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What was your favorite outfit of April?

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SIA Outfit: Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring · Style Imitating Art

Last week’s Style Imitating Art choice by Salazar was a lovely 19th century painting featuring two young girls, loads of greenery, and spring flowers. I immediately knew I wanted to wear something pink. So what’s better than a pink dress?

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Dress – c/o eShakti (similar) | Cardigan – The Limited (same) | Shoes – Target (similar) | Neckace – JF&A Show (similar)

797px-John_Singer_Sargent_-_Carnation,_Lily,_Lily,_Rose_-_Google_Art_Project

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I wore this last week on one of our random warm days. And then it got cold again. It’s that stupid time of year when summer is so close you can taste it but it’s not quite here. It makes me grumpy.

Actually, to be honest, I’m kind of grumpy right now anyway. I’m super busy at work and while I enjoy being busy, honestly, I’m not used to it!

Maybe that’s why at dinner on Saturday night I got feisty on social media with a local restaurant, Nellcote. We had 8PM reservations but when we still hadn’t been seated, our coats taken, or even offered a drink by 8:30 PM I started tweeting at them. Guess what? We ended up getting free Prosecco and a seat in the lounge while we waited. Still, while I’m impressed with their responsiveness (well, kind of. I had to tweet at them several times) I’m less than impressed that it took me being passive aggressive instead of them just having their act together. I think from now on I’ll stick to their $10 beer & pizza happy hour and avoid them on Saturday nights.

Anyway, if you want to see how other people interpreted this painting and maybe read someone less grumpy, head over to Salazar’s blog and see what we all came up with!

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Ravenswood Run 5K Race Report [Fitness Friday]

Fitness

In another interesting display of what happens when I stop focusing on running and start focusing on strength training, I managed to finally beat my 5K personal record at the Ravenswood Run 5K last Sunday.

Of course, I also hadn’t raced a stand-alone 5K in over two years, so there’s that.

Anyway, I got a last minute free entry to this race from a guy in my running club who had won it in a raffle but was unable to use it. There was another guy in a similar situation so I snagged that one as well and shared it with Emily who as gracious enough to drive us to the race and figure out the parking situation.

Neither of us had ever run this race before but I knew a lot of people running it and a friend of mine who I trained with for the Chicago Triathlon last year lives near the race and invited  us over for brunch. Never one to turn down a free race or free food, of course I said yes.

I was admittedly surprised at how large this race was considering it’s a “neighborhood” race. I suppose, though, that it’s a neighborhood in Chicago which has as many residents as some small towns.

By the way, I’m in a video of the start of the race. Just look for the girl in a bright neon green tank top and a black hat.

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Oh, there I am. In fact, other than a picture that I took with some friends post-race this is the only photo of me since my usual race photographer (aka my husband) didn’t join us.Ravenswood 5KI met all these people through blogging. Gotta love bloggers!

Anyway, after a warm-up jog with Emily and a few port-a-potty trips it was time to herd like cattle into the start corrals.

Considering I hadn’t raced a 5K other than as part of last year’s two sprint distance triathlons, I had no idea what I could or couldn’t do. I decided to go out hard and just see if I could hang on.

Well, I’ll tell you, while it netted me a PR, it also netted me some of the worst positive splits I’ve ever had. I think my first mile was just over 7 minutes while the other two were more like 7:45. Ouch. I finished in 23:24 which means I knocked a little more than a minute off my two-year-old 5K PR. I fully admit that’s crazy considering I have done zero 5K specific training.

However, my legs STILL feel shredded. Of course, it didn’t help that this week was my heaviest week in my current training cycle. I’m sure combined with that 5K my legs are going to be screaming for mercy for awhile.

The race overall was very well organized, if a little bit more crowded than I enjoy. And apparently I totally missed the cinnamon rolls at the finish line. Dear blogger friends, why didn’t you make sure I got one of those?? Oh well. Free brunch with my Live Grit friends will just have to do.

Now I admit that I’m intrigued about specifically training for a 5K. Do I dare try something like Hal Higdon’s Advanced 5K training program interspersed with my strength training? Or do I just leave well enough alone and keep doing what I’m doing?