Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Push Yourself!

Hello everyone and welcome if you are new to reading my blog. I took a little few days off from blogging. I started my MBA program in January of this year and between work, school, our social and family life, I needed a breather. I can't complain as my weekends are always packed and full of fun! It makes for a busy busy schedule. I have to thank my husband for being amazing! He is helping me out around the house and making my life easier and less stressful! Thanks babe! Sooo...time to get back on track, today will be my Wellness Blog since I missed it on Monday.

How is everyone doing on their squat, stair or fitness challenge? A little update on my end: I am two days behind on the squat challenge. I have 200 squats to catch up on and I am hoping to be caught by Friday. The stair challenge is going well. I have only used the elevator a couple times at work since August 5. My fitness challenge is going good. I have portioned out my meals and stayed...mostly on track. The weekends make it hard but I noticed a few changes and even got a "looking good" from a friend. When other people notice, you know it is working. Sometimes we are so use to seeing ourselves everyday we don't notice the change. With that being said here is to Wellness Wednesday :)

I will be running a relay marathon with the Smith Sisters this September, if you don't know them you will learn more about them through this journal. Due to my new found love for boating my training for this marathon has been...weak! Angela, the eldest sister, decided we all needed some training and got us motivated on running a 5k every Thursday in August through the Bill Heideman Cross Country Series 2013. All the runs are trail runs and really test your skills. Well I did not do so well 36:35 on a 5K trail run. Not the best timing for me, so it motivated me to start a running program from now until the marathon. I tested it this morning and only did 2 miles because I had to go to work. I will need to allow more time in the morning to reach the 5 mile run level I will be completing at the event.

I decided to do interval training. I can already run but need to pick it up and extend my time with running straight through. Right now I am running 10 minutes walk 2 minutes (week 9). I have included a chart for those who are learning to run or want to extend their time. Just remember you can push your body farther than your mind. 

Beginning runner training plan

The feeling of accomplishment from achieving this kind of fitness is indescribable...well at least for me it is. I did not start becoming health conscience until I started working at the clinic. Wellness is part of the package there, and really no way around it. Some people complain but in the last 5 years I have never felt better.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Spot of the Week: Geneva on the Lake

How is everyone's squat challenge going? Day 3: 60 squats! I have to do 60 today and another 35 to make up from yesterday. I did not complete the set yesterday. As far as the stair was more productive when I parked on the 8th floor of a parking garage, but being on a surface lot I am only getting about 3-6 flights a day. Better than nothing, right?? Keep up the good work everyone! 

Geneva on the Lake! OMG what a great time I had this past weekend at my friend Bri's bachelorette party! We did the wine tour that is featured through the Lodge. There were 17 of us, not the tour has to be paid in advance (18.00). The tour only includes your rides to and from the wineries. Trust me you want to the DD, these places are paced pretty far apart. We didn't realize the Lodge (pick up location) was about 2 miles from the cottage we were staying at. With a little bit of charm we were able to have the drivers pick us up at the cottage, and with a little bit of tip money we were able to pretty much do whatever we wanted! We had a few pit stops along the way and the drivers were more than accommodating...two thumbs up for the Lodge Tour costumer service. We went to 3 wineries Chalet Debonne & Cellar Rats Brewery, South River Vineyard, and Winery on Spring Hill. 

First up Chalet Debonne & Cellar Rats Brewery: great view, limited selection of wines, and they offer food. They also have a brewery so if you want to bring your man and he is not a fan of wine, this would be a good place to start. I recommend starting here so you can grab a bit to eat before attempting the rest of the wineries. The wines were not my favorite here but the service was great and the size of the winery was nice, you didn't feel cramped and overall nice experience. 

Second, South River Vineyard: by far my favorite!! It is an old church turned into a winery. They have plenty of space and the views are breath taking. I wish we had more time at this least to see the sunset. They offer snacks at a reasonable price and the wines are very tasty! I will defiantly be going back. 

Third and final before we hit the strip (another tale for another time): Winery at Spring Hill: Live music, excellent service and tentative bar staff. They were a trip and defiantly made the bachelorette party feel welcome! This is where we completed most of our dare cards (bachelorette party game) and it was a blast!! The wines were good, I would not say it was an excellent selection but I did enjoy them and will be going back.   

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Tuesday Tips: How to Plan a Successful Bachelorette Party

With wedding season in full effect this may help some of you. Tuesday Tips will be about how to throw a successful bachelorette party. A little background on how a became an "expert" in this area was by having amazing friends and family that wanted me to be part of their special day. I keep all my bridesmaid dresses and I think I have a total of 15 dresses which I know is not much in comparison to some of you who should have stared in 27 dresses....but if you know me you know I love to plan any event and if I could be an event planner full time I would!!! Anyways the year of 2010 put my planning skills to the test when 3 of my closest friends got married in the same year and I was honored to be each one of theirs matron of honor. I had to be creative and make each one perfect for them while maintaining a budget so I picked up a book called The Bridesmaid Guide. This prior to Pinterest and it seemed all the online stuff was the same I had seen at every bachelorette party. The book offers great ideas and something you use as a base of planning.

Before you get to that first things first:

1. Get a guest list from the bride with phone numbers, emails, and addresses. The more information the better.

2. Ask the bride what she wants. Some don't care, others have it planned to a T. 

3. Send a save that date out via Facebook, email, and text. I have found this is effective for any person. I usually send this out 6-8 months in advanced. Most of these parties are in the summer so people are busy and you want to make sure the bride has all her friends and family there.

4. Start your planning so you can find the deals. I like to do a theme party depending on the girl, sometimes you can mix themes. I included some pics that maybe helpful in your planning. I will showcase some of them down the road. I have done others but these were defiantly more themed. 

5. Don't be afraid to ask other bridesmaids and guests to pitch in. I usually ask every to throw in 20 bucks towards the brides evening. It includes her stay at the hotel or house wherever you decide to stay, dinner for her and drinks, snacks for all, and any left over money should be used on the bride and her guests, i.e. rounds of shots.  

Scrapbook and Camo Goodie Bags for the Guests
(included late night snacks, water and advil)
A little spa treatment before hitting the town...check out your local vendors for free services.
Side note people should buy a little something for the person coming out.

Up close of the drink menus
Sex in the City themed party with drink menus

Each bride has a scrapbook made by
her nearest and dearest friends and family

All girls in black and Bride showcased in white, makes for fun pics

Monday, August 5, 2013

Move it Monday: Challenge Yourself

Health tip:  Drink 1oz of water for every 2lbs you weigh, daily. 

To I ask you to challenge yourself. Summer is coming to an end and that doesn't mean you have to put on the winter weight. This month I have 3 fitness challenges I am going to set for myself. I encourage you to do the same and we can share stories in the below comment section. First up a 30 day squat challenge, next taking stairs instead of elevators, and three start my new fitness/health challenge with a group of friends. 

Challenge one:

This butt needs a lift and squats is the best exercise (in my opinion) that tones and gets rid of cellulite. To speed up the process of cellulite removal invest in creams like Nivea firming lotion and gel. Every Monday I will report an update on how the challenges are going. If anyone would like to do this with me please comment below...Good Luck!! 

Challenge Two: Take the Stairs...walk it out! I have done this in the past and it truly works, great results when paired with other challenges. 

Challenge Three: 

Start and maintain fitness/health challenge with friends. I will post monthly pictures to hold myself accountable and post what workouts and eating habits I am taking in case you want to join in on the journey. First pics will be before (today) and after (end of August). 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Thursday Thoughts: Pay it Forward

A topic I wanted to touch on this week was giving back. So many times we see people donating to foreign countries and other areas that we may not be familiar with. Although I think that is great and we do have people within our own community that can use our help or even just paying it forward! The smallest things can make someone's day, like paying for the person's coffee behind you in the Starbucks line, or complimenting a co-worker or friend. I feel most people are quick to judge and have negative comments more than being positive and doing something constructive. This is something we have been discussing and recently my friend Mindy shared this video with us and it really puts things into perspective on how we can treat one another and pay it forward. Please watch the video and grab a tissue: Pay It Forward

In relation to this, about a year and half ago a few friends and I got together to start a bible study. We realized we all wanted to learn more about the word. Through our recent teachings we have come across the topics of love and paying it forward. All the ladies in the bible study tithe each month and we use that money to give back to local charities. One we do quarterly and will ask for anyone's help with is the East Cleveland's Men's Shelter. This is hosted by the red cross and River of Life Church, we volunteer with these great men and women to host a dinner for the men's shelter. The bible study group aka "Bible Babes" makes care packages for the men. Almost every time the items we receive are donated by local companies, such as toothbrushes and toothpastes from David Patton's Dentist Office in Solon, Ohio or Goldberg Companies who donated book bags and other handy items. The girls also buy throughout the quarter of items they think would be useful. If you would ever like to help with this please let me know. Some other local charities that could use help are The City Mission on 55th and Carnegie Ave and Laura's Home (located next door).

Most recently we were able to help the Ronald McDonald House in Cleveland, Ohio. We were able to buy all the items on the RMH wish list, minus the gift cards. If you are feeling generous please donate to any one of the houses. The Cleveland house tends to hit home for me. One reason is it is next to the Cleveland Clinic where I work, and two we had friends stay their over the winter while their twins were at the PICU (Pediatric Intensive Care Unit), through prayer and wonderful doctors the twins left the hospital in complete perfect health. The Ronald McDonald House hosted the parents with a place to stay and meals. They offer support in anyway they can and have plenty of activites for children. Recently the CAVs donated to the computer room providing new computers, desks, chairs and remodeling of the area. The Cleveland RMH serves 4 hospitals in the area, Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, Rainbows Babies and Children, and Metro. They are adding on 15 more rooms so I am sure they will need more help coming this fall. Please check them out and see if you can lend a helping hand....

This picture does not do it justice
because we are missing 6 other ladies

If you know of any local charities that need help, please comment below.