Thursday, April 28, 2011

Country Music Half Marathon, Part I: The Expo

I took the day off to attend the first day of the Country Music Marathon Expo.

We *all* have to go to the expo either Thursday or Friday, because there is no packet pickup on Saturday morning. Rather than rush in and rush out, I decided to make a day of it (I also remembered having to park really far away when I went to the expo pregnant last year. Although I didn't end up doing the race, I did get the swag :-))

I wrote a post recently about why I run, and I cited races as one of the big reasons. Well, that was reinforced today. Even though I knew no one, I felt at home there.

Here's what it looked (and sounded) like when I arrived:

I had a very easy time picking up my packet, then headed over to pick up my t-shirt and swag bag.

I looked through some of the merchandise and noticed they had a mirror there just for me..
Seriously. I need this mirror at home.
After you get out of the mandatory merchandise section, the place opens up and the expo is open to the general public.

I picked up a new hydration system and a tunebelt for my Iphone. So, sadly, I will no longer be wearing my super cool fanny back (I know, you're weeping)...

One of the highlights for me was that I wanted to hear John Bingham speak. One of my heroes, he is also known as "The Penguin". He makes running accessible to "normal people".  He also (and I didn't know this until today) used to work where I work, and held the position now held by my boss. So, that made for interesting conversation.

Anyway, his talk was really more interactive and informal. It was definitely worth the price of admission.
He saw me about to take a picture and stopped talking to pose.

Basically, he would look at each of us and say, "Okay, what are you concerned about?"

Since I was Front Row Joe, I got to start.

I told him my main concern: That I barely made it through 10 miles, so how on earth can I make it through 13.1?

His response:
"Were the roads blocked off for you?" (No..)
"Were there 40,000 people cheering for you?" (Well, no, even though I tried to pretend there were).

But, he really reassured me that I would be fine. He said I would be having so much fun, I would look up and realize I had run 5 miles!

Other things I learned:
- Keep your *effort* constant, not your pace. (Which means you might have to walk up the hills. Oh, did I mention there are hills?)
- Do not over-hydrate. If you pass a water station and you're not thirsty, don't drink!
- He said a lot about ignoring your watch. People have PR'd when they didn't look at their watch the whole time...
- The worst thing you can do after a race is get in a hot tub. Darn it.
- One full marathoner said he was nervous because he felt like he hadn't trained enough.  Mr. Bingham said "If you can't be well-trained, be well rested." This made me feel a bit better...

He also introduced me to his ex-wife, who used to work where I work, and can tell me lots of local running routes.
Girlfriend needs to get her roots done..
 After that I headed back to the car and went to get my kids.

After I got them settled, I checked out my swag:
Eh. Not much swag..

A good day. I'm inspired to run a good race.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

An Interview with Stephanie Barr, of TLC's Extreme Couponing!

Stephanie Barr is the co-owner of the website, Our Coupon Home. This website is a great resource for both new and experienced couponers. There is even a forum which is very helpful. She is the co-owner of this site with Stephanie Harriel. Stephanie B. is going to be featured on tonight (4/27/11)'s episode of TLC's Extreme Couponing.

Stephanie graciously agreed to let me ask her a few questions. I hope you enjoy reading, and be sure to watch for her on tonight's show!

Sarah Fitness: Why did you start couponing? How did you start?
Stephanie Barr: About 4 years ago I went through 2 back surgeries. I had to leave my job and go on disability, which didn't pay anything for 6 months. So my husband took a second job to pay the bills. While I wasn't able to do anything else I started researching saving money online. I stumbled across couponing websites and within 2 months my husband was able to quit his second job because I was saving so much.

SF: What was your biggest "Aha" moment or couponing breakthrough?
SB: When I realized how to "work" the drug stores. Once you see that you can get just about anything for 90% off from these stores it really gets your mind going.

SF: Many of my readers are interested in healthy eating, but feel that it's impossible to eat healthy AND frugally, especially using coupons. Do you have any advice on how to eat healthy while using coupons?
SB: This is such a valid concern! Many people feel that there aren't coupons for healthy items, but this is simply not true anymore.

1. There has been a huge surge in coupons for organic items lately.

2. Many grocery stores put out coupons on their veggies and fruits now, you just have to sign up for the store card to get them via mail or "e-coupon" (loading them to your shoppers card).

3. Be aware of overage. If your store allows it, overage is when your coupon exceeds the value of the item you are using it on, leaving the store "owing" you money. Of course they won't really pay you, so you "buy" your healthier items by putting them in the same transaction as your overage.
My last shopping trip was $10 in seafood, fresh mushrooms, 8 Dole individual fruit, a gallon of Silk milk, 4 containers of greek yogurt, 2 pouches of tuna, 2 boxes of dishwashing tabs, a dozen eggs, 4 packs of Huggies wipes, 2 containers of Parkay butter spread, and 4 boxes of veggies. I saved 67% and paid under $25. Sure, you can save 90% on junk, but I try to save my best on healthy options for my family.

SF: How do you organize your coupons? Do you use the typical coupon binder? Or do you have a different system?
SB: I use a 3" double ring Case-It binder. Typical set up.

SF: Please share your top 3 coupon organization musts.
SB: 1. If you don't clip them you don't know them. By the time I clip them, sort them and put them in my binder I know every coupon I have. This allows me to match up coupons with sale items on the fly.

2. Use the method that works for you. Many people use a binder, but others use a box. Some people use photo sleeves, some people use baseball card sleeves. Whatever works for you is what you should use.

3. Donate your expired coupons! We have adopted a military base that is allowed to use expired coupons. Once a month go through your binder to remove any expired coupons, pack them up and send them oversea!

SF: How do you feel about stockpiling and buying items that aren't needed (like we've seen on the show)?
SB: That is a highly debated topic. If you are actually donating the items, you enjoy it and you aren't clearing a shelf I say more power to you! It's not for me. I get anxious if I have more than 6 months supply of something. There is nothing worse then you spending all this time getting a deal only to have the product expire on your shelf. I do give away some of my stockpile to family and friends, but I've never done more than that.

SF: If a person has one hour a week to coupon, what is the most effective way for them to spend that hour?
SB: Find a good website, check your stores forum for match ups to printable coupons on the sale items and put these items on your list to plan your meals around what is cheap. Printable coupons are so easy to use and can easily save you 25% on your bill without you doing a bunch of work.

SF: What do you think is the biggest mistake of new coupon shoppers?
SB: New couponers take this all too seriously most of the time. I did it too when I started. I thought that I couldn't miss a deal. If I forgot a coupon I would beat myself up about it. Now I know that life isn't perfect and neither is my couponing skills. I do have high totals and months where I'm not ontop of my coupons. Life happens and family comes first. This is a hobby.

SF: Do you have any tips for brand new couponers?
SB: 1. Know your store policies and follow them!

2. Have patience. This is a new skill and it takes time to learn.

3. Never clear a shelf! Get a raincheck, wait for the item to go on sale again, buy half of what your "plan" says....I don't care, but always leave product on the shelf so that they can get the great deal too.

Check out Stephanie's website and Facebook page!

Thanks so much, Stephanie, for taking the time to talk with me! I know my readers will be very excited to hear from you, and will learn a lot!

And everyone, stop by my Facebook page- where we talk about fitness, nutrition, goal-setting, and sometimes just get a little silly...

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

An Interview with Jenny Grothe from "Recipes for Gals in Figure and Bodybuilding".

Jenny recently completed the Boston Marathon!

Jenny Grothe is truly one of my heroes. 3 years ago, she made the decision to change her life. In that time, she has:
- Lost 60 pounds
- Began competitive bodybuilding, placing in 6 competitions!
- Developed a Facebook page, Recipes for Gals in Figure and Bodybuilding, (over 23,000 fans and growing!)
- Become a marathon runner, most recently completing the elite Boston Marathon.
- Written and published a cookbook, 75 Ways to Love Your Oatmeal. 
- Successfully turned her passion for fitness and nutrition into a business.

Jenny graciously agreed to be featured here on Uberlibrariana. I can't wait for you all to get to know her!

Sarah Fitness: What was life like for you before you started working out? 
Jenny Grothe: I was a happily married mom of one very special little boy. I had everything you could imagine, a wonderful husband, the gospel, my adopted little guy, a successful career that allowed me to work from home, great friends, a supportive and loving family, but I didn't have my health. That always came last. I let ME go, and my body went with it. 

SF: What was the "aha" moment- the moment you knew something had to change? 
JG: I was 37, always on excursions with my "thin" friends, and I was the "big" girl. I was so tired of it. They ranged in size from 0 to 6. I was a size 14. I think I equaled the sum of all their sizes put together. There were MANY "aha" moments that happened within a very short period of time (it's all in my cookbook too in the "My Story" section) that finally hit me like a brick. I was done. That simple. I never looked back. 

SF: What keeps you motivated? 
JG: I read a quote recently that sums it up; it read (from Runners' World), "Once you've been 'fat' (their words not mine but I can appreciate the word), you will always be worried about being 'fat' again" - or it was something to that effect. It's true. Back in the day when I knew very little about nutrition, food, diet, macros, and training I had no clue how it all played out in my body. I'd eat anything giving very little thought to the consequences. Now, I question everything. I indulge more than many on my page, but I also am aware of those indulgences and am sure to balance it out later that day, that week, after vacation, or whatever it is. There is not a day that goes by that I don't analyze my diet and training. THAT keeps me motivated. In all honesty my page does too. Now that I am more in the public eye I feel more of an obligation to keep it up, and it helps keep me honest. **wink**

SF: Nutrition is almost as important, if not as important, than working out when it comes to seeing results. Do you have any tips to make it easier to eat right? 
JG: I completely agree. 80% of what you look like is due to diet. You can have loads of muscle and shapely curves underneath, but if you don't watch what you eat, you're selling your body short. The best tip I can think of? Don't think that clean foods have to be boring. I'm living proof. Every day I focus on making foods I crave "clean"  - that way all my GALS and I can enjoy them. Healthy foods can taste great, full of flavor, and absolutely "crave" - worthy!

SF: You compete in bodybuilding AND race long distances (WOW). What are some of the differences in training for the two? How do you do both? 
JG: I get asked this ALL the time. It's a give and take. I will never be the best at both because I refuse to give up one or the other. I could be faster, I'm sure, but I'm not willing to compromise the time spent in the gym building muscle, and I don't want to be rail-thin and lighter on my feet in order to be "that" much faster. On the other hand, I do have a fair amount of muscle now that's taken me 3 years to build, but I know without a doubt I could be even fuller if I didn't run as much. Do I wish I had more muscle? Yes. do I wish I could run faster? Yes. Will I continue to try and do both? Of course. But am I okay at just being as good as I possibly can knowing I don't want to give up one for the other? Absolutely. 

- SF: What are some tips for anyone who is just starting an exercise program
- JG: Don't give up. Don't look at it as a training program or something you are "trying". The only way to see sustainable results is to make the commitment today that this is a lifestyle and there is no other way. There is no other option. There is no going back. Of course you might fall off the bandwagon, and that's okay. We all do. We are human, but do you give up? No. You get right back on, learn from your mistake, and press forward. Results take determination, hard work, and patience. 

- SF: You have a Facebook page, Recipes for Gals in Figure and Bodybuilding. Can you tell us a little more about that? 
- JG: It started out as a place to share recipes and get recipes from other competitors. I set it up and then didn't visit my page for 3 months. I kid you not. It might even have been longer than that. Then when I visited it again, it had over 3,000 fans. I had done absolutely nothing to gain them. Since that time I have felt it was my responsibility to take ownership of the page and pave its direction. I never would have guessed it would grow in to what it has. It has been a real blessing in my life. My focus for the page is to provide meaningful quotes and bits of inspiration, offer a safe place for women (and men) to share questions and post thoughts without judgment, connect with every single person who takes time out of their busy day to be a part of the page, offer new recipes that I or others create, blog my thoughts, and review products that are relevant to what my GALS are in search of. I want every time my GALS visit the page to feel they are uplifted and have learned or gained something positive. I don't tolerate negativity. At all.

- SF: You offer meal planning- how does that work? 
- JG: I don't sell it as a weight-loss program or a diet per se. Instead, I position them balanced meal plans that provide a healthy breakdown of carbs, proteins, and fats based on the specific needs of each of my customers. Each plan is based on that person's gender, age, fitness level, amount of activity during the week, diet restrictions, cravings, dislikes, and goals. My basic meal plan consists of two weeks - each week being different. Each week comes with the daily schedule, nutritional breakdown, recipes, and shopping list. Though I don't sell my programs as being for weight loss, I've had many many women email me their success stories which is very exciting. As long as they are happy with the results, I am happy for them! I want to teach women how easy clean-eating can be. I want them to feel comfortable in their own kitchens. They either become empowered as a result of my meal-plans, ending up creating new foods and meals of their own, or they have several weeks (ideally) they can fall on and rotate through depending on what they are craving. Either way they are eating better and healthier. 
[Note from SF: I have been lucky enough to try some of Jenny's meal plans and they are WONDERFUL! Highly recommend them!]

- SF: You went from out of shape and unhappy to being a published author, bodybuilder and BOSTON MARATHON FINISHER! What a transition! What would you say to someone who is where you are that would help them getting started on their journey? 
- JG: Set one goal. Do it. For me, it all started there. 

Thank you so much, Jenny, for talking with us! I have no doubt you will continue to inspire many more GALS (and guys!)

If you would like to learn more about Jenny's story, how to purchase her amazing cookbook, or how to sign up for a meal plan or training, visit Jenny's Website: http://www.jen-fit.com/ or her Facebook page. 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Stacie at "I Love You Always and Forever" is starting Insanity today!

My good friend Stacie at "Love You Always and Forever" (how many of you sing that song when you read that title? Or, am I dating myself?) is starting Beachbody's Insanity program today. I'm going to help coach her through it..

She will be blogging about it, so I wanted to give you all the chance to follow her blog as she writes about her adventure:


(She also has some pretty nice things to say about me over there, which make me blush :-))

If you've never heard of Insanity, here's a little bit about it:

And hey, if you like that, there's a sequel that just came out... so you can keep working!

Stop by Stacie's blog and cheer her on!

And don't forget to visit us on Facebook!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Last Training Run Before The Race: With Video

I completed my 10 mile run today, which is my last long run before the race next week. It was so hard, I decided to start documenting it with video.

Part I: At about 7 miles. It's been pretty challenging for a while.

Part II: I am starting to lose it a little. The last 1.5 miles seems like a million.

Part III: I've finally finished.

So, I finally got home to my son waving at me from the window, and felt proud that he'd seen me accomplish that. He may not be super aware of it right now, but I hope it's sinking in on some level.

And now, my daughter and I will ignore housework and take an epic nap.

The Country Music Half Marathon: One Week Before The Race

So, in about a week, I'll be running in the Country Music Half Marathon. Now, I've gone over my running story before (here) and talked about why it's important for to set and reach goals (here) and why I run (here)... but I just want write a little about how I'm *feeling* as I prepare for the race.

I feel like I've been training for this race for years. I know there are people out there that go out and run 13 miles every weekend, and it's no big deal. Well, I haven't reached that point yet. It's still an incredibly big deal.

I have wanted to be someone who could "run" a half marathon since I completed the OKC Marathon in April of 2004. That was SEVEN years ago!

In SEVEN years:

1. I ran over myself with my own car.
2. My mother died.
3. I got another master's degree and became a librarian.
4. I had 2 kids.
5. I have been bitten by a dog and had to go to the E.R.
6. I became a runner.

I hope that one day soon, I'll be a runner who runs half marathons regularly (not every 7 years). But, even then, this event is going to be special to me because it's been something I wanted to do for the past 7 years. It's the beginning of greatness. I have no doubt

I'm already making plans for what I'll do after the race. I'll work on strengthening my longer runs. I'll do a little more weight training. I'll be stricter with my nutrition. Then, in September, I already have another half scheduled.

But, no matter what my time is, or what my race experience is, I know this upcoming race is significant. And I'm really excited.

Don't forget to come over and hang with us on Facebook, where we discuss motivation, nutrition, and how many of us secretly believe Shaun T. is our imaginary boyfriend.

Friday, April 22, 2011

High Five Friday!

We made it, folks. It's Friday!

I'm hoping for an interactive post today, so I have 3 questions for you:

1. What was the best part of your week?

2. What did YOU do the best?

3. What will you do this weekend?

See. They're easy questions.

I'll even answer them myself:
1. The best part of my week: When I ran 2 miles in 18 minutes and 40 seconds.
2. What I did the best: I worked out EVERY day I said I was going to (weekly workout summary coming tomorrow). It's a Christmas miracle (or an Easter one...)
3. My plans for the weekend: This weekend I will run 10 miles and watch Doctor Who. I will also celebrate Easter. Other than that, I can't make any promises.

I am really going to miss Liz Sladen. 

Now it's YOUR TURN! High Five!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Awesomeday recap

Things that are awesome, #1: That first cup of coffee. Yum. #Awesomeday

Things that are awesome #2: Baby laughs in the morning

Things that are awesome #3: Rowan: "What's your favorite ice cream, Daddy?" Robert: "Butter pecan." Rowan: "That's a good choice, Daddy!" 

Things that are awesome #4: Having my calendar on my phone. Seriously. I have never felt this organized....

Things that are awesome #5. Although, it is so awesome, it feels like it should count twice.

Things that are awesome #6 (although it's hard to top the Craigslistlieder): Being pain free in my back.

Things that are awesome #7: The Country Music Half Marathon is 10 days away.

Things that are awesome #8: Team Awesome (my growing group of coaches and friends) 

Things that are awesome #9: Knowing my friends and family are safe, healthy and happy. Let that never be taken for granted.

Things that are awesome #10: People who smile at you for no reason. (Or they may be smiling because I'm smiling. Either way it's cool).

Things that are awesome #11: Heading to the gym for a lunchtime weight workout. GRRRRRRR....

Things that are awesome #12: I just remembered Extreme Couponing is on tonight, and got a little happy....

Things that are awesome #13: About to go pick up my babies and head home...

Things that are awesome #14: Vague status updates about miracles, divine signs, and something REALLY AWESOME that may happen in June!

Things that are awesome #15: Ending the day on a SUPER high note... and a trip to L.A. in June... :-)
(more about this later...)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


If you'll remember from last week, Wednesdays have been renamed (at least by me) "Awesomeday". So, Happy Awesomeday!

I'll do an Awesomeday recap tomorrow, but for now, I just wanted to post a bunch of random things:

I never seem to have the right utensils to go with what I'm eating.

Yesterday, I went for a run on the track, and had a Christmas miracle.

All y'all with your 7:00 miles can stop laughing at me. This is the fastest I've ever run, and I'm pretty excited.

I had kind of a breakthrough, where I felt like I was really "RUNNING", instead of just plodding along. I was light and free, almost flying. Dude. And that was only at a 9:20 minute mile. Imagine how I'll feel when I go even FASTER!

I am absolutely nuts about Extreme Couponing. It's kind of ridiculous, but I love it. I don't have delusions that I'll get $1000 worth of groceries for $3.00, but I do know it inspires me to learn how to coupon enough to cut our grocery bill down (which would leave me more money for other things, like new running gear and workout toys)....

Check out this lady. Awesome...

Wow. I fantasize about reaching that level of organization.

So, I hope everyone had a wonderful Awesomeday!

Do you coupon? Can you help me learn?

What's your favorite day of the week?

Oh, and feel free to post something awesome about your day below!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I wanna be...

... A great mother.
... A successful businesswoman.
... Financially organized.
.... More efficient
.....An entertaining blogger
.... An inspiring fitness hero(ine)
.... My ideal weight
.... "The friend a friend would like to have"
.... A ray of sunshine...
.... A successful librarian
.... An organized housekeeper
.... At peace
.... Great at couponing
.... A runner
.... Tan
.... One of those moms who looks all put together at 6 am.
.... Out of debt
.....Near family more
..... Confident in my beliefs
.... A good cook

Do you ever feel like you want to be too many things? How do you deal with that? I think I'm going to have to prioritize and let some of these things go...

Monday, April 18, 2011

Why Do I Run?

Recently, a friend asked me, "Why do you run?" 

I found it virtually impossible to answer quickly. I told her, "I think I'm going to need to do a blog post about it.."

Just finished a 5 mile run. Obviously confused..
Reason #1: I Love a Challenge
There was a point in my life when I finally realized my accomplishments meant more if they were actually challenging.  Running is very challenging. The great thing about it is there is always going to be a challenge. If I get to the point where I can easily run a 10 minute mile, I can aim for a 9:30 mile. I really don't see a point in my future where I will *not* be challenged by running.

I find that I need a goal. I need a race to train for. I used to workout *just* for weight loss. Or fun. And those things have value as well. But, when I have a half marathon scheduled in 4 weeks, that sometimes is the only thing that gets me out the door on that run. 

Reason # 2: I Love Races!!
Frosty Fun Run 2009: Just finished a 4.4 mile race in VERY cold weather!

To me, there are few things that are more exciting that the moments leading up to the start of a race. And the sight of someone who's never met you cheering for you when things are a little tough. High fiving another runner....

And the feeling of crossing the finish line.

I love ALL of that.
Getting ready to run a 5K- 19 weeks pregnant.

 Reason #3: Overcoming the past

When I was in elementary school, I had asthma. I *DREADED* the day we had to run the mile. I knew in my mind I would be last, and I always was. To me, there was nothing worse than running. It was cruel and terrible. I think one of the reasons I hated it so much was because all the kids made fun of me. When I ran, my asthma acted up, and I coughed this horrible cough that sounded like a gigantic HONK. So, all the kids would "honk" just like me. They also called me "Slow Runner" (looking back, it's really not a very clever insult. I mean, it had the word "runner" in it, at least...) but for years, that's who I was. I was "Slow Runner".
Not only did this poor girl hate running, look at her hair!

Now I think of that, and I'm still not breaking any speed records... I'm pretty happy with where I am, actually. If someone called me "Slow Runner" today, I would say, "And? Your point is what?"

Part of why I run is to make it up to that poor little girl who didn't know it could be fun.

Reason #4: Yeah, I want to look good.

Duh. I want to lose weight, and be fit, and running is one of the most effective ways to burn calories. But honestly, if I were *just* doing it for vanity, I would have a hard time being motivated. There are other ways to lose weight. But, yeah, it's pretty cool to say, "I just ran 10 miles and burned about 1000 calories. Can I have a cupcake?"

Reason #5: I kind of just love it.

No, I don't love the first few steps. But, I love when I find my stride, and feel my pace speed up, and find the rhythm, and feel like I could keep going forever. I love telling myself I just have to go 5 more minutes, and then just for fun, going for 6 instead. I love pushing my limits and discovered I could go either farther or faster than I thought I could.

And, yes, there is a runner's high. I don't get it every time, but it's awesome enough to keep me coming back in search of it.

There are tons of reasons I continue to put myself through this. To run even when it's hot outside, or cold outside, or my feet hurt, or my knees hurt, or I'm tired... well, you get the picture. There are days when I finish a run and I think "I hate you running. Let's break up." There are days when I finish a run and think "I love running so much and want to run forever."

The important thing is that I keep coming back either way.

Do you run? Why?

What keeps you coming back? 

Let me leave you on this note...

(Don't forget to come to our Facebook page! There is always fun to be had!)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Awesomeday recap

One of my friends, Brooke at B and the Boy! participated in Awesomeday yesterday, and had the great idea to summarize all of her "Things that are awesome." I'm going to be a total copycat and do so here :-)

I'm just so happy everything's awesome!
So here are mine:

Things that are awesome, #1; Coffee. (Always).

Things that are awesome #2: Super cute babies. I mean, really
Hi. I'm ridiculously cute!

Things that are awesome #3: The baked oatmeal I had for breakfast. Yum

Things that are awesome, #4: You. Yes, you. Wow.

Things that are awesome #5: Beautiful Spring weather.

Things that are awesome, #6: Cats in the bathtub
Hi! I'm ridiculously angry at you for this!

Things that are awesome, #7: My great friends Team Infinity Beachbody Coaches. You guys rock!

Things that are awesome, #8: That little sound the iphone makes when you have a new message :-)

Things that awesome, #9: Fitting into clothes that used to be too tight. Love that.

Things that are awesome, #10: The Shakeology Shakedown dance! We did this at the Super Saturday event this weekend.

Things that are awesome, #11: Getting an email from Country Music Marathon with the subject "Electronic 
Delivery of Confirmation Sheet and Final Information". It's getting close!

Things that are awesome, #12: Extreme Couponing is on tonight! (I probably won't get to watch it for a while, since it's not on Nick Jr., but the comments on Facebook as it airs are almost as good...)

Things that are awesome, #13: The moment when I first see my kids after being away from them all day. ♥ ♥ ♥... ‎(#14: The moment they are both finally asleep.) Kidding...

Things that are awesome #15: Doing something that scares you. Are you about to do something scary (not just for the sake of being scared. You know, to grow and stuff). ..

Things that are awesome #16: When I say, "Rowan it's time for your bath", and he says, "Okay Mommy", without any arguing.

Things that are awesome #17: Snuggling with a kitty (who is no longer wet from her bath) and a baby.

Things that are awesome #18: When Mommy wins.

Things that are awesome #19: Our weekly Team Infinity Beachbody Coaches team call. Love our team!

Things that are awesome #20: Bedtime. I'm a big fan. Good night! Hope you all enjoyed your Awesomeday!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


From here

If you're friends with me on Facebook (and if not, WHY NOT? Go there now. Add me.), you may have noticed my friend Kimberly and I have renamed Wednesday as "Awesomeday".

Feel free to join in.

On Awesomeday, we list the things we find that are awesome. They can be as little or as big as you want.

The point is to count your blessings. You see, I believe when you focus on what is good, the bad is not quite as bad.

So, try it! And let me know how it goes!

(And come be awesome with us on Facebook!)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Positive Attitude Toolbox

We've all been there. You're going along, having an okay day, and then suddenly BAM! something happens that takes you off your game a little.

It can be a little thing or a big thing, but something's trying to get you down.

For example, this morning on the way to work, I happened across an accident that had just happened. Someone had hit a deer. It was very sad, very depressing, and could have been terrible.

I caught myself thinking for a moment, "Well, that's a terrible start to the day. Now I'm going to have an awful day. How depressing."


I stopped.

I pulled out my "Toolbox".

Do you have a positive attitude toolbox?

In my toolbox (or "bag of tricks") I have:

Instant mood boosters: 
Thinking of my kids, my baby's laugh, my son's silliness. I even keep short videos on my phone of them being cute, so I can watch them through out the day.

It's not so bad:
I guarantee you, in every situation, someone else has it worse. When I get depressed about money, I think about folks that don't have a bed to sleep in. I think about people worrying about their physical safety in Libya or Japan.

Counting blessings:
I literally count my blessings. I often do this as a Facebook status. "Things that are awesome # 1: This cup of coffee." Doing this helps me focus on the joy of every little thing, and when you focus on the positive things, the negative things lose a little bit of their power.

Mini pity-party:
What? A pity party? Surely, you've mistyped...
No, I do allow myself about 5 minutes to be depressed if something is getting to me. I tell myself: "You can wallow for 5 minutes. Then you'll be done." When 5 minutes is over, I go back to one of the other tools, such as counting my blessings, or taking action of some sort.

Listen to or watch something fun/funny/feel-good.
If you don't have a tool box of "feel-good" songs or videos, let me share some of my favorites...

And for that matter...

So, there's my toolbox. I must admit, it often involves James Marsters/David Boreanaz and Nathan Fillion. But it also involves seeing the good stuff, because it *is* always there....

Do you have Positive Attitude Toolbox? What's in it?

(P.S. Come over to Facebook, where we talk all things fitness, coffee, and sometimes Joss Whedon).

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Insanity Asylum...

No, I'm not talking about my house....

Insanity: The Asylum is the new workout by Shaun T. It has just been released. In this video, Shaun T. (I love him) explains a little bit about what it's about, and why you may want to try it...

Now, I love Shaun T. So does my son. Just in case he didn't charm you into trying one of his workouts, watch this video of what happened the first time my son tried one of his workouts (Fit Kids Club):

(He did come back later to finish it. That was a lot of focus for a 3 year old).

(P.S. Message me if you want to know how to get your copy of Asylum: uberlibrarian (at) gmail (dot) com.)

Super Saturday: Beachbody and an indoor 8 mile run.

The Beachbody Mission Statement
I had a big Saturday this weekend. Beachbody (I'm a coach) had it's quarterly "Super Saturday" event, and I was scheduled to run 8 miles. I wasn't quite sure if I would be able to do both. It took some effort.

I'm going to report on both....

Super Saturday

Beachbody organizes a nationwide event every 3 months. We had one nearby, and I really wanted to go.

I found a supercool babysitter who was willing to spend all day with my kids, and headed out with an awesome fellow coach...
I was very excited when I arrived!
Soon I was able to score an Insanity shirt

I spent some time looking around at the displays, and meeting a lot of coaches. I love meeting Beachbody coaches- they are some of the friendliest people.

This is my new friend Alton. He wrote and choreographed the "Shakeology Shakedown."

Oh yum.

It's like a fitness fanatic's heaven over here...
We had some coaches get up and tell their success stories. The cool thing about Beachbody coaches is they always have both a physical transformation success story, as well as a business success story. It was inspiring to hear.

After the training, we all got together to learn the "Shakeology Shakedown" dance. I took some video of an early rehearsal:

So fun. The closest thing to a group workout I've done in a while. I got a little crazy and worked so hard, I was sweaty at the end. I had accidentally worked out! (Don't you hate when that happens?) Normally, I would be thrilled... but I had that 8 miler coming up...

8 miler:

We made our way back to my house, and on the way home, noticed that the temperature was above 90 degrees. Oh no. I melt if it's above 75. How am I going to run in this?

I decided to make the leap and run inside at the gym.

Looking goofy and psyching myself up to run a lot.
I decided to start my run on the track. The track is comforting to me. I run faster on the track. It was loud, due to an activity going on down on the first floor basketball courts. That was fine, since my headphones were only working sporadically anyway (!!!). I just took off the entire fanny pack fuel belt and ran with no music or water or anything. Since I was doing a run 4/walk 1 plan, every few laps I would be walking when I came by the spot where my water bottle was, so I was able to take drinks pretty regularly.

I told myself I would do 32 laps before taking a break, since that would be almost 5 miles. After that, I took a potty break, texted to check in on the kids, and moved to the treadmill.

Since I'm doing the manual record keeping, here's my time for 32 laps (about 4.92 miles):

The treadmill was boring and awful and painful. I made it 2.08 so that I would be at a total of 7 miles. That was about as much as I can stand.
I hate the treadmill.
I went back to the track to finish up. I considered running 2 more miles on the track, but I realized I better not push it. I was having the following issues by this point:
- inner thigh chafing. 
- I felt like someone smashed my pelvis with a hammer.
- My running was starting to look like a shuffle.

So, after 8 laps (1.23 miles) I stopped.
manual (literally) record keeping.
I walked a bit to cool down, and then stretched. I knew, however, when I stood up and felt the tightness, that I was going to be a bit sore. I was in a hurry to get back to the kids, so I did NOT stop for ice for an ice bath (the way things went, it would have melted before I had a chance to have a bath anyway, though. My kids had missed me).

Oh, but here's the best part. I went downstairs to weigh on the way out, and had this magical moment:
Finally under 150!
So, all in all, it was a great day. A busy day, and I could barely function afterwards... but a good day.

Thanks to all the great coaches who were so friendly, to my friend who drove on the way, and to the babysitter who was able to take care of both my kids ALL DAY. And my wonderful husband got takeout, which was wonderful.

How was *your* weekend? Any epic workouts? Did you get to relax?