Thursday, August 21, 2014

Who, What, Where, When, Why and How of Running

Runners Tell All Link-Up
Training: Favorite Person to Train With/Training Routine/Tips

Who do I run with
Honestly, I prefer to run solo.  When I started getting into running I loved that I could just stick my headphones in and sort of escape the world for a bit.  It is a great way to get out of your own head and just relax, not having to worry about anything else but the music streaming through your ears.  If I am running with someone else I am always thinking to myself, "Am I running to slow for them? Am I holding them back? Or maybe I'm running too fast, should I slow down?"  The only exception to this would be if I am running a long race or doing a fun run.  I would much rather have someone with me to enjoy the fun runs or help keep me motivated on a long race.  But for just day to day runs I prefer myself, the road, and some music. 

What tips do I have: 
A spoiler to the answer of the When question below- I prefer to run in the morning.  In order to make sure I actually wake up to do it though, I have some tips.  It's all about the planning ahead.  If I decide I am going to run in the morning I will first set my alarm.  Next I will put out my clothes and shoes next to the bed.  Last but not least, I make sure to get a full night's rest.  That way when I wake up all I have to do is get up and change, no excuses.  

Where do I run:
Anywhere outside.  Unless it is winter and it's raining, I definitely prefer to run outside.  Running on a treadmill can be nice if you are trying to track distance or speed more precisely, but it gets boring.  The scenery never changes.  There's something so refreshing about running outside in the fresh air and getting to see the world!  Okay, so 'the world' I am referring to may just be the trail down the street from my apartment, but at least it beats the view of an old hairy man on the stationary bike that I'd probably see in the gym.  

When do I run
Bright and early.  There's a few reasons why I prefer to run in the morning.  First off it's cooler in the morning, which is especially nice in the summer.  The thought of running on a summer afternoon in the dry heat sounds miserable.  Another nice thing about running in the morning is you get it done early and can continue on feeling good that you've already accomplished something with your day. 

How about them sunrises though?

Why do I run:
A big reason of Why I run is actually up in the Who section.  Running is a great stress reliever and escape for me.  Although I am working out and may be exhausted and out of breath, it is somehow still relaxing.  Sometimes I think running is more of a mental exercise than physical.  I run because it makes me feel good.  It makes me feel accomplished and proud of myself when I set my mind on a certain run or race and then I finish it. 

How do I train
For my day-to-day schedule, I don't really have a standard running routine.  The only time I have an actual running schedule is if I am training for a certain race.  When I am not doing that though, I try to run maybe 3-4 times per week, although that doesn't always happen.  Work and life seem to keep getting in the way.  It sure was a whole lot easier to find time to run/exercise when I was in school with all kinds of free time.  Oh how I miss those days..


Monday, August 18, 2014

Sephora Haul


Online shopping is a dangerous thing.  Being able to buy almost anything you want with the touch of a button.  You don't even have to leave your house.  Thankfully I am a picky clothes shopper and need to try everything on or else I really would never leave my house.  My online shopping usually consists of hair products, books, random house accessories, or gifts.  This time it was for hair products at Sephora

I have been on the hunt for a good product to control my frizzy hair.  I love having curly hair but the one thing I don't love is the frizziness that can come with it.  I have tried countless products and have found a few keepers, but am always looking for others as my hair seems to constantly change.  

My most recent purchase was the KMS California brand for shampoo, conditioner, serum, and cream.  Although this product has worked the best out of anything I've found so far, I feel like my hair has almost grown a tolerance to it.  When these products starting getting low I had to decide either buy them again or try something new.  Although this product does work for my hair, I wanted to try something new.  



This time I decided to try the Living Proof brand and got a conditioner and no frizz nourishing styling cream.  Since I only wash my hair a few times a week I decided to just get the conditioner this time.  The first thing I did was smell the products.  They actually don't really have any scent to them which I guess is better than smelling bad.  The conditioner leaves my hair feeling very smooth especially when used with the styling cream.  A little bit goes a long way with the cream so don't use too much.  Which is nice since these products are a bit pricey, but they will last you a while.  As far as keeping the frizz down, I'd say the cream does a good job.  It definitely keeps my hair feeling smooth which I love. 


Since I was already in the shopping mood I decided to also buy an eyeliner that I have heard good things about.  It is the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On eyeliner in the shade zero.  Let me warn you this is an expensive product but I have tried countless drugstore brands and none seem to get the job done.  This one claims to be waterproof and smudge proof which is necessary after a long day of work or a long night of partying or if you happen to do a lot of crying.  The nice thing is they have just about every color you could ever want.  Although I am not sure what occasion you would need to wear pink or purple eyeliner to, they have it just in case.  But I guess I'm boring and went with the classic black.



It is definitely smudge proof and waterproof.  Once I put this on my hand I tried smudging it with my fingers and nothing happened.  I then tried to wash it off with just water which it did eventually come off, but took some scrubbing.  Make sure you have a good makeup remover before trying this eyeliner.  It is super easy to apply with the thick crayon-like tip it slides right on.  And I love that it stays in place for the entire day without rubbing off and making me look like a raccoon.  Because that is never a good look. If I buy this again I would get it in a brownish-black since I prefer to go for the more natural look, this black is a bit too bold and dark for me. 



One perk to spending a lot of money with online shopping is that sometimes they like to throw in free samples.  Since I spent over a certain amount I was lucky enough to get free shipping and 3 free samples.  The first thing I chose was this Dolce & Gabbana perfume in the scent Oriental Vanilla.  It is such a simple but delicious sent.  Since it's got a sort of deep-warm smell to it, this is one I would probably wear more in the winter.  I absolutely fell in love with this perfume, I am tempted to buy a regular size bottle for everyday use though.  But with a brand name like Dolce & Gabana, I am too scared to look how pricey that tiny bottle will cost.


The second sample was this Agave healing Oil Treament.  The sample had no directions on it so I had to look online how to use it.  Turns out it's like a styling cream that you are supposed to apply to damp hair.  This one was nice and definitely made my hair feel smooth after using it and smelled pretty good too.  But since I already bought the frizz control styling cream I really don't need to buy another one quite yet.

The last sample was another perfume.  Except the sample was literally just one of those paper samples you get out of a magazine where you tear the cover off and smell it on the paper.  The perfume was lemon scent which smelled nice, but that was not what I was expecting. 

What are your favorite products to buy online? 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Exfoliating Scrub

I have seen this thing floating around the internet recently.  It wasn't until I heard from a friend that had actually tried it that maybe I should too.  The purpose of the scrub is for the sugar to help rub off any dead skin while the olive oil moisturizes your skin.  It will help your skin feel fresh and smooth.  And the best part is it can be made at home!

All you need is a little bit of extra virgin olive oil and some granulated sugar.  You can really make however much you want, just remember to use the ratio of 2:1 for sugar to oil.  Meaning for every 1 cup of sugar you will need 1/2 cup of olive oil.  


Since this was my first time trying the scrub, I decided to start small.  I only used 1/4 cup of sugar and 2 tbsp of olive oil.  But again, feel free to make however much you need or want.  I am pretty sure this scrub will keep if stored in a sealed container.  Once you have your ingredients all you have to do is mix them together and you're ready to use.



I would recommend applying the scrub in the shower as you will need to rinse it off after.  To use, simply grab some with your fingers and rub in circular motions wherever you feel your skin is the most dry and could use some TLC.  Once rubbed in let it sit for a minute then rinse off.  For the best results I'd suggest using some lotion after to fully capture the moisture. 

This was enough for me to exfoliate my legs and some of my arms.  Honestly, it felt kind of weird rubbing oil and sugar on my legs at first.  These have always been items I only use in the kitchen for something I will later consume.  But I must say this stuff really works.  It left my skin feeling so smooth!  I'd recommend only doing this exfoliate once a week.  This is a perfect excuse to give yourself a little spa day every weekend. You could also add scented oil if the olive oil scent isn't your thing.  Have fun playing around with the amounts and scents and go ahead and treat yourself!  You won't regret it. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

My Garden


Not my dream garden, but a garden none the less.  Since we are in an apartment with no backyard, having a full garden was not an option.  But we still needed something for our little patio and decided on a basil and hibiscus plant.  Basil is such a nice to thing to have on hand.  I wouldn't normally think to go out of my way to buy basil at the store, but now that I have some I find myself adding it to everything.  Just because I can.  It is obviously a key ingredient in pesto sauce which is great for pasta or my favorite, on a sandwich.  Basil is also a key ingredient in caprese (with mozzarella and tomatoes) which is the perfect snack in the summertime. I have also found myself just chopping up some basil and adding it to anything from fish to casseroles to soup, you name it.  

The best part of having a basil plant though is how good it smells!  I love just going on my patio and being able to smell the fresh herb.  Is that weird?  Yeah, that sounds pretty weird. But that's how good it smells!  


Apparently hibiscus flowers only bloom for one day.  This may sound like a waste to have, but they are so pretty that even if you can only enjoy them for one day it is worth it.  Besides, they are pretty low maintenance and can potentially grow into full bushes if planted in the right place.  


























I would have loved to plant some more flowers, but I think it is too late in the season now with fall coming just around the corner.  We also considered buying a Topsy Turvy planter for tomatoes, but a little hesitant that it would actually work.  

Any body have luck with a Topsy Turvy? 
What are some good flowers to plant for fall?

Friday, August 8, 2014

Summertime

One of the things I miss most about being in school is getting a summer break.  Well really any break, but especially summer since the weather is so nice.  Now I gradually gain vacation time and have to wait until it's accumulated enough to go somewhere.  But then I'm basically getting paid to be on vacation so I guess it's worth it?  

Sometimes I wish I was still in school though so I could stay up until 4 in the morning on a Tuesday just because I can.  Or sleep in until 11 am and make mac n cheese for breakfast just because I can.  Now I have to wait until the weekend to do any of those things, but by then I'm too tired and would rather catch up on sleep.  

Thankfully I had a few days saved up so I could go on a little vacation this summer.  My family and all my cousins have been going to Santa Cruz every summer for as long as I can remember.  We used to rent a house and stay for at least a week.  But with everyone working and having kids with summer activities, it has gotten harder for everyone to take that much time off and all at the same time.  We did manage to get everyone together for a few days though! 






A little time at the beach was exactly what I needed to recharge.  Nothing beats a morning run on the beach followed by breakfast on the patio overlooking the ocean and then spending the entire day relaxing and playing on the beach.  It was hard to leave and come back to the real world. 






























Although I didn't have to return to the real world quite yet because the mini vacation wasn't over.  The day after we got back I went to a country concert.  It was by far one of the best concerts I have ever been to.  The headliner was Dierks Bentley but there were three other performers before him.  We also got to see Jon Pardi, Chase Rice, and Chris Young.  It is such a good feeling when the artists singing live sound just like their songs on the radio.  They were all so good!  It was definitely the longest concert I had ever been to.  The concert was 4 hours long, and I didn't get home until about 1:30 in the morning.  That alarm clock the next morning was the worst sound ever, but it was so worth it. 

And that still wasn't even the end of this mini vacation!  The next night the boyfriend and I drove up to Mendocino to go camping for the weekend.  That's his family's go to spot every year for a summer vacation.  They usually go for 2 weeks, but I definitely didn't have enough vacation time saved up for that, so one weekend was all I could manage.  





It is so beautiful up there, I just wish it wasn't 4 hours away.  It was nice to get away from the summer heat for a bit though.  The coast air is so fresh and crisp.  It felt good to get away from technology for a few days and just be out in the woods and really enjoy it.  Nature is a beautiful thing that is easy to miss and take for granted in the modern busy life style.