Life of Late ~ 3.27.15

We made it.  The last day of the work week and the last Friday of the month.  Folks, friends, people – this is the end of March already.  Time is pretty much flying by. So to celebrate this, let’s end on a hodgepodge of what has been going on in my corner of the big apple.

IMG_8933 >> because spring does not mean it should still be snowing, right? … … … I thought so <<

IMG_8934>> my mom and I made the trip to central park twice last weekend and each time (morning), we ended at the uptown Joe Coffee with a cold brew coffee and cinnamon scone for me and cappuccino and rosemary scone for her.  simply divine <<

IMG_8766 >> joyful almond smoothie from juice generation is quite nice, especially when it is free.  I was planning to use the rest of my gift card, but when the machine stopped working, they ended up giving it to me for free.  Don’t mind if I do. <<

IMG_8923 >> swish. let the march madness begin.  does anyone have a baller bracket that is still in the running?  one can NEVER predict the upsets…never <<

We sometimes like to joke about this whole November Project World Takeover.  Or do we?  Just this week, the awesome NYTimes journalist Courtney Rubin wrote an article about our tribe and the movement that Brogan and Bojan started back in 2011.  You may recognize a name or two ;)  Courtney came to one of our workouts a month or so ago, participated in the shenanigans and then interviewed a few of us on why NP is so special.

Then, what do you know and Racked picked up the NY Times article, pinning November Project as an “anti-Soul Cycle”, which really means against paying $35 a workout.

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>> double trouble crew from a couple weeks back.  because working out at 5:30 and 6:30 is just sooooo much fun (sometimes…when the weather is nice…which means it’s not -10 or snowing) #runtoeat <<

Speaking of eating, remember how I talked about my obsession addiction love for peanut butter?  Well, I told myself that I would not out right purchase a jar of nut butter.  Lucky for me the cafeteria provides an excellent spread of crunchy and creamy Skippy.   But, seeing as I am no longer a teenager and have to really think about what goes into my body, I better start taking better care of it.  (*Not that I ever had one of those supermodel metabolisms anyways…stupid genes. Just kidding mom and dad :) I still love you)

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I connected with a company called us.myprotein.com, which is the biggest online sports supplements store in Europe and rapidly growing in USA.  They also operate myvitamins.com – online store offering Protein Powders, Instant Oats, and other healthy foods health and wellness.  To be honest, I’m not much of a protein powder person and I’d much rather prefer to consume products, which contain ingredients that I can understand.

I’m sure we have all heard over and over how important omega 3’s are to one’s heath and what about those monounsaturated fats?  (insert thumbs up emoji and thank you to my friend Rebecca :) ).  But really, I have to give two thumbs up to these products because the peanut butter is made of JUST peanuts, none of that added sugar business that I was eating from our 10th floor cafeteria.  I only started taking the Omega 369 a couple days ago, so stay tuned.

IMG_8913 >> have I told you how much I love Joe + cold brew lattes?  Cold brew coffee, strong coffee, just coffee.  I’ll take it :) <<

~ “10 YouTube Channels That Will Actually Make You Smarter” ~

There are days when I feel I am digressing in my education.  Not that I really want to go back to school, but I don’t feel that staring at a computer for 8+ hours a day helps with my mental capabilities.   I’m 100% sure my attention span has digressed but what’s new.

An article about elite athletes brings up some good points about running.  One of my favorite quotes – “For us, running competitively is not about winning the race, but testing our mettle, seeing what we’re made of. It’s a negotiation–and sometimes a battle–with our own egos.”  David’s (the author) takeaway:

4 Keys to An Elite Attitude

1 – Don’t treat training runs or race times as indications of your self-worth
2 – Value every runner’s efforts, success and potential
3 – Don’t beat yourself up in training or in evaluating your workouts and racing
4 – Recognize that your running ability is a result of many factors, not just how serious you are or how hard you push

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>> that time we skipped the line to access the rooftop bar and and celebrate these girls’ march birthdays <<

hope you have a fabulous weekend 

A Delicious Deliverable Discovery

Dinner, dinner, dinner.  It’s always quite a dilemma of what to make, mostly because I rarely keep the fridge stocked with ingredients and end up making mixed veggies and some sort of chicken or fish.  Sure, that’s healthy but can get a bit boring at times.  This is a total cop-out since there are thousands upon thousands of recipes out there.  My friend Alex has even started her own blog called Burke’s Bites and has been documenting some wonderful recipes that I must try out.

But, I know myself and I know that even when I leave work right on time, it’s not entirely plausible to work out, whip up a gourmet meal, relax, and go to bed by 10pm.  Even after shuffling my schedule so that I work out in the mornings, my energy level and creativity usually has diminished by the time I walk in the door.

It’s also safe to say a large percentage of New York City residents rely on Seamless.  Knowing the take-out options – one is bound to get in the habit of ordering burgers and fries and pizzas (oh my).  Yes, w all have days to chill out with Ben & Jerry, but I live by the idea of “eat good feel good” and definitely feel the effects of eating too much on the not-so-healthy side.  So, in a city filled with free fitness, Soul Cycle, and green juice enthusiasts, there should be a better or healthier option, right?

what is munchery~ home ~ menu ~ gifts ~

Based in San Francisco and New York, this relatively new food service plans to make eating better easier, which seems to be a national trend.  The food is made by top of the line chefs and delivered to you by some of the best drivers.  Talk about quality service!

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Have a food allergy or particular eating or dietary habit?  Have no fear, they have a variety of filters to add to your order so you can select the perfect meal.

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Talk about the plethora of options.  Some of these meals I could only dream of making on my own.  Part of this reason is that I’m not a huge fan of leftovers and most delectable recipes make recipes in bulk (note 4 to 6 to 8 people).  Unless I’m cooking for the apartment or for friends, I end up being a short order cook and sticking to the basics.

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~ GIVE FOOD FEEL GOOD ~

Gift cards to Target or Starbucks are so old school (but still appreciated).  Here’s yet another way that you can 1) show someone you love them 2) send a thank you 3) just be nice

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Not only can you give the gift of food to friends and family, but it’s also a charitable company as well!  I bet it you’ll feel 2x as good knowing that you’ve eaten a tasty and healthy meal AND helped give back.

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So now that you know about this booming business, maybe, just maybe Munchery can be the new solution to your dining dilemmas.

Just to note, this post was not sponsored or requested by any Munchery employee or advocate.  It’s purely my own discovery and desire to share the wealth :)

What’s your go-to weeknight meal?

Quick Trip to Poughkeepsie

When my mom agreed to spending a few days with me on the east coast, we selected a place of historical significance to explore.  Having already conquered most of the city’s tourist hot spots and already traveled to D.C. and Boston, my mom came up with the idea of heading north to Poughkeepsie.  Yes, you read that right (as you did in the title as well), good ‘ol Poughkeepsie.

It’s true that not many folks would choose to spend their Friday off in the quaint little town, but that we did.  So, after bringing my mom along to the Friday November Project workout, we made our way to Grand Central and hopped on the Metro North – Hudson line.  I may have overestimated how advanced other cities would be with their public transportation or even taxi system.  Let’s just say I was a little sketched out by some of the vehicles and drivers.  This was no New York City.

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After briefly stopping by our hotel, we hailed a taxi to travel back up to Hyde Park.  Back when I was planning this trip, I thought we could easily walk the three miles to Hyde Park.  What I didn’t plan for was the fact that there were no walking paths (only a small highway) and the fact that it would be snowing on the first day of spring.  (I blame the groundhog).  In all honestly, it would have been better to have had a rental car so that we could actually drive to the three houses – Hyde Park, Eleanor’s Val-Kill, and the Vanderbilt Mansion, as well as around the outer lying areas.  But, the smooth two hour train ride was relaxing and allowed us to read, nap (as if), and soak in the snowy sights along the Hudson.

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>> Eleanor & Franklin D. Roosevelt at Hyde Park <<

Home to the Roosevelt family and more importantly, Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882–1945), 32nd President of the United States (1933–1945).  While Val-Kill was the home of Eleanor Roosevelt, she spent a good 40 years living on the property with her husband and family.

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Our tickets for the home weren’t scheduled Saturday morning, but with the bleak weather forecast, we decided to switch it around and take a Friday afternoon session instead.  Fun fact: FDR actually created the presidential library while he was still in office.  To some that may seem narcissistic, but it was a great way to keep all his mementos and legacy running.

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Because we arrived a bit early, we had the chance to wander the museum and soak in the history of the four-term president.  I could have spent hours in that place and think it was definitely worth more than the house itself.

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It was quite the information-overload, but oh so interesting.  They even had the same office where FDR did some of his famous fireside chats used to inform Americans of the progress of the country.

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>> Hyde Park in all it’s snowy glory <<

IMG_6582While I won’t make this a history lesson, I did find FDR’s battle with Polio very intriguing.  After he contracted it in 1921, he worked very hard to maintain a strong appearance.  No pictures were to be taken of him looking frail or between wheelchair and podium.  He even would take time to drag himself down and back along this driveway to prove to himself that he could still function on his own.

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>> FDR’s living room where many meetings and family gatherings occurred <<

Hyde Park
4097 Albany Post Road, Hyde Park, NY 12538
Located on Route 9 (90 miles north of NYC)
Cost: $18 joint ticket (FDR Home + Presidential Library)
Top Cottage$10 Closed Nov. ’14 – May 2, ’15. Open Sunday, May 3, ’15 – Oct. ’15

IMG_6598Earlier I mentioned something about a hotel.  Well, after finishing our tour of the museum and house, we decided against staying the night and headed back into the city.  A much better plan as we weren’t left stranded by the weather and had a great deal more options for food and entertainment.  Funny enough, it turned out to be a full-blown Roosevelt weekend.  My mom had stopped by the birthplace of Teddy Roosevelt (located here), we worked out with NP at the Sarah D. Roosevelt Park (here at Houston and Chrystie), and visited the FDR Presidential Library.

So, if you don’t think you will ever make it north to Poughkeepsie, I hope you enjoyed this historical tid-bit :)

Life of Late ~ 3.20.15

Hi my name is Kaitlin and I have a nut butter problem and no I’m not a nut case.  I may drive some people a little crazy, but that just adds some fun into my life and yours.  Trust me.  Back to the real problem – the fact that a serving size is 2 tbsp and yet the jar is consumed within a week.  If I really wanted to make it interesting, I should have a taste test challenge and purchase a whole basket full of options.  But alas, my wallet nor NYC cupboard space does not allow for that.

So what else is new in the world besides my nut butter habit?

IMG_8849 >> just about the only green item I consumed for st. patty’s day.  #thematicfail <<

IMG_8644 Of course I would have to include 1, 2, 3, or more November Project pictures.  Because that’s what’s up.  Happy Birthday to NP NYC :)  This time, no straight faces and just smiles all around.

Speaking of NP, here’s an applicable article about community. ~ What Does Community Mean to You (A Little Opulent) ~ Belong, respect, support, authentic.  Spot on.  We all want to find a place where we feel at home, can be our best selves, and enjoy the people around us.

IMG_8718A couple weekends back, we came out strong to celebrate one of our tribe members who was sadly moving away from the big apple.  We rocked the afternoon in style with a city wide scavenger hunt and thank goodness I was on a team that took it seriously.  That meant running almost 5 miles throughout the city taking pictures, doing burpees in Grand Central and creating dance parties with perfectly random strangers.  If you know me, you know that I ADORE this stuff.  Amazing Race?  Sign me up.  No really, my 18th birthday was Amazing Race themed, so I’m all over that.

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>> that time we decided to take oyster shots.  this was not part of the scavenger hunt challenge but we thought that it could count as extra points.  it actually was my first oyster and I don’t remember much of the taste as I doused it in cocktail sauce and literally shot it down my throat. <<

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>> the party ended up at Brother Jimmy’s where they of course have a photobooth. not free but worth it! <<

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>> we three happen to share the very best birthday.  epic NP workout day and celebrations to come <<

Having been in the city and specifically in Manhattan for three months, I’m getting a bit antsy to travel.  So, let’s make a list of the 10 Historical Trips to Take (The Well Traveled Wife) ~ This girl travels everywhere and in the most stylish fashion.  I adore all the tips and tricks she provides for traveling along with the oodles of pictures for each post.  If you don’t already follow this blog, I highly recommend!  It will have you ready to travel in no time at all.

IMG_8822 >> did you know that the 5th ave Tiffany’s offers complimentary water (flat or sparkling) on their 6th floor customer service reception? absolutely divine <<

 On a It these types of articles and stories that make you appreciate every ability you have to run and live a healthy life.  Cameron Gallagher, a 16 year old, had suffered from depression and anxiety.  She was in the process of raising awareness and had just completed her first half marathon when she passed away from an undiagnosed heart arrhythmia.  Noto to be a downer, just to share how people are spreading awareness and passion through running.

Speaking of passion, here’s a little article about 20 Signs That You’ve Found Your Passion (A Little Opulent) ~ All excellent questions or thoughts to consider when looking for a job, finding your place at work or society, or just living.

IMG_8819 >> what to eat after a workout or night of fun <<

IMG_8820  >> what I really would like to eat after a workout or night of fun.  I may have enjoyed every bit but also suffered a slight sugar crash and hangover while we watched Cinderella.  Not so fun. <<

IMG_8658>> celebrating a friend’s birthday in brooklyn bash style <<

 I have a feeling that my mom will make a comment about my hair while she is here.  It’s my mother who reminds me when to schedule a hair appointment.  Yes I am almost 24 and she is still the perfect person to do this.  Most of the time I listen and schedule something within 8-10 weeks of each other.  I’m going on week 20.  So, if these tips on how to eat your way to better skin and hair don’t work, maybe I”ll just make an appointment.

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>> On Fridays, we take over Times Square.  Or any other location around the city.  Waking up for a 6:28am workout is possibly the best way to experience Times Square.  Trust me. <<

If you made it to the end, congratulations.  I’ll leave you with this happy thought…IT’S OFFICIALLY SPRING!!

Daily Sights in the Big Apple

By now you have probably seen most of the highlights of New York either through my blog posts, through one of the many other NYC blogs, or maybe just by visiting.  But what happens when I’m not gallivanting about the city or people actually aren’t on vacation and the tourists go home?  Oh right, they never do.  Well, spoiler alert.  I don’t have the opportunity to run around the city every.single.day but what I do stumble across in this big concrete jungle can be pretty magical.  So here are just some of the sights and sites that I come across on my daily grind.

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>> hopefully the last snow (fingers crossed) of the season <<

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>> Moving into March and April rain showers. It’s what we Californians call the other part of our “season” – a nice compliment to the endless heat and drought. <<

IMG_8770 >> Columbus Circle and the oh so wonderful Central Park <<

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Sometimes all you need is a quick walk around the park to get your head back in the game.  Because I don’t always eat with my coworkers (most of us eat in front of our screens these days), I decide to take a walk in the park instead.  As the weather starts to get warmer and the snow has melted away, it’s even more enjoyable to get out and walk around.

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>> over the path and through the park <<

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 You know, it would be pretty neat to be able to travel and site see and feel on top of the world all the time.  But then you would return to your routine and the little life pleasures wouldn’t seem as fabulous anymore.  So here’s to living it up 7 days a week. Go get ‘em.

Never a Dull Weekend

With warmer weather (note 40’s), sunshine past the time that I leave the office, and notes of grass poking through, you could say that spring is on its way.  This winter didn’t seem to be as terrible as last winter, or maybe I’ve become accustomed to the cold.  From my perspective, it was a lot more cold and a lot less snow.  Fine by me!  Now it’s the home stretch to spring and there’s SO MUCH TO DO!

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>> Thank goodness we are easing out of snow and the roads are (almost) clear <<

Last week we had our company wide sales conference and for two days, we packed 500+ people in a Marriott conference room to talk up-front sales strategy and watch the different department sizzle reels.  Each day was followed by a night of mingling, drinking, and frou-frou appetizers.  All in all, lots of fun and it helps me get outside my shell (that’s right, I do have somewhat of a shell), but all the socializing certainly adds up.  By Friday I was ready to pass out and even missed a couple early morning alarms.

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>> little leopard in the concrete jungle. if only Tory Burch would acknowledge a Kappa Alpha Theta discount and my world would be made <<

Saturday morning I woke up to a steady stream of rain, which while not ideal for outdoor activity, beats snow and the freezing cold.  I had agreed to run 8-9 miles with a friend from NP who is training for a marathon and had 18 miles on the books for that day.  By the time she picked me up, she had already run at least 9!  With the help of another NP friend who is also a NYRR pacer, we stayed strong along 1st avenue and around Central Park.

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>> Saturday mornings are never complete without a free juice from Juice Press <<

So of course, just when things are getting back to normal or where I would like to be running wise – minimal arch pain and I think the plantar faciitis is diminishing – I feel a pain in my other foot.  WebMD leads me to believe a bruised/potential stress fracture of the metatarsal bone.  Cool.  On day 1 of half marathon training.  According to the internet, it’s caused by a speedy increase in mileage, which is true.  I probably was feeling good and overestimated how much I could handle.

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True – I don’t have the body of some of the faster runners and I may never be able to handle all the mileage of a marathoner.  There are weight loss strategies for runners but honestly, I already incorporate those tips and tricks into my lifestyle.  So, in order to avoid all disaster and still run the half marathon in May, I will need to re-focus and be much better about cross-training and recovery.

It’s times like these where I want to say “why me” or “this isn’t fair” and “life sucks”.  But that’s not true.  It’s just a bump in the road and I need to be grateful that I have had the ability to run this much this far.  Again, I come back to the fact that every single body is different and we can all accomplish different things in life.  My favorite phrase is “you do you” and yes, sometimes writing it here reminds me to walk the walk rather than just talk the talk.

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Yesterday I volunteered at the NYC Half Marathon to fulfill my “+1″ credit to enter the 2016 New York Marathon.  The half marathon course took runners through Central Park, down through Times Square, along the west side highway, and down around the Battery area.  I chose to volunteer at 14th and the west side, around mile 8 and had an absolute blast. Sure, 5am was an early wake up call (for any morning let alone a Sunday).  Sure the temperatures could have been a little warmer (but were perfect for the runners).  Sure, the 2.5 hours of screaming caused me to lose my voice.  But it was all so worth it.

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The group that I was with may not have been as fun as my November Project peeps at last November’s NYM Mile 14, but was equally as efficient and hilarious.  One of the volunteers even brought coffee and banana bread for us all.  Sweet, right?

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This is an interesting race because you either enter the lottery based upon time or can enter by running in 4 of the 6 “Borough” races put on by NYRR.  Sadly I won’t be able to qualify for next year’s race through the Borough challenge because I missed out on the January Manhattan half and will be out of town during the Brooklyn half.

IMG_8817>> Because a race isn’t complete without brunch (endless boozy brunch?) and some attempts at taking pictures.  Congrats on all the PR’s or even first half marathon races for these guys! <<

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Do you like to volunteer or cheer at races?