Archives for February 2016

02/29/16

Running: Treadmill vs Outside

Well friends, we are back to Monday but this Monday feels a little different than most. I achieved a goal this weekend I set for myself at the beginning of the year…. I accomplished 12 miles on Saturday! They my best miles but I pushed myself and didn’t stop. I am planning on running a 16k in June so accomplishing 12 miles by March is a success! During this long 2 hour run, I started thinking about running outside vs running on a treadmill. For me, there is no way I would complete 12 miles on a treadmill. I find them boring and not real accurate compared to running outside. But, I prefer them over running in 20 degree weather!  So, I have put together some pros and cons for running on a treadmill compared to outdoor running:

The days are getting colder: shall we hit the treadmill or stick to running outdoors?

Pro: The difficulty level is the same

The question of difficulty level always arises when it comes to running indoors vs outside. People assume that running outside is harder than logging miles inside on a treadmill. However, research has proven that setting the treadmill to 1% incline accurately reflects the same energy costs of running outdoors. So, it’s just as effective as long as you add a little incline. For me, I like to see the hills ahead of me that I am about to conquer.

Pro: It’s easier on your joints

The smooth, cushioned belt is more forgiving than hard pavement or cement. Running on a treadmill can help reduce some of the impact on the joints and the body as a whole. This can be especially helpful when rehabbing or coming back from an injury. I have actually never actually faced an injury from running (yet), but I know you have to gracefully get back into it and be smart. If you are coming back from an injury, its always a good idea to alternate outdoor and indoor running to get the body back into motion.

Pro: You can simulate race environments

Many of the more advanced treadmills allow you to create your own unique course profile, which you can use to simulate the exact course you’re training for. Even if you’re not training for a race, you can switch up your workout by choosing a certain trail or terrain, depending on the options, to make you feel as though you’re half a world away. As far as weather, temperature, or terrain, the treadmill comes in handy which can mean everything if you live in a very cold or wet part of the country. If any of these do not bother you or you are a beast of an athlete, then outside running is better for training purposes. Since most races are set outside, training on the pavement is the best way to prepare for the race of your life.

Con: You could lose your agility

Speaking of the hills and terrain, although the treadmill might provide your joints with more cushion, you don’t get the added benefit of running on pavement. Even if the ground outside might feel flat to you, it never truly is. Therefore, your foot and leg muscles are constantly making small adjustments to adapt to the changing surfaces. These adjustments are great for coordination and balance. While treadmill running can help improve your overall fitness, it won’t mimic the real-life situations that are simulated through running outdoors.

Con: You don’t work as many muscles

Because there is a machine powering the belt, the muscle mechanics differ when you run on the treadmill. Outside, you typically rely on your hamstrings to finish the stride cycle and lift your legs behind you, almost kicking your butt. But on a treadmill, the propulsion of the belt does much of that work for you. You use your quads to push off, but your hamstrings aren’t firing as much as they would if you were running outdoors. If you’re only running on the treadmill, be sure that you’re also doing cross training to work the muscles on the back of your legs.

Con: It’s boring

There are no two ways about it: Running inside is boring. Even if you have the best playlist or you’re watching TV, it’s just too easy to look at that clock directly in front of you—and see that only 30 seconds have passed since the last time you checked it. (Tip: You can try covering the display with a towel to keep that clock out of sight). When running outside, the time naturally seems to move faster because you are literally covering more ground. Plus, you set a literal finish line for your run and see it getting closer and closer as you approach it. This provides you with a more natural sense of distance and will give you that extra push to finish strong when you feel like giving up.

Personally…

  • I won’t run in the dark by myself so having the flexibility to run on a treadmill at any time is a bonus
  • my pace is faster when I run outside
  • I notice slight differences in my form when I run on the treadmill
  • I get bored on the treadmill even if I’m watching TV
  • I feel more “accomplished” after running outside
  • Outdoor running uses more muscle fibers and burns more calories for the same amount of work when compared to a treadmill.

Fortunately, I don’t have to choose one over the other. I will always prefer to run outside but having the option of a treadmill has it’s benefits and it’s better than not running at all. No matter what the weather forecast brings, I find running outside more refreshing and enjoyable compared to the treadmill.

Do you prefer running outside or running on the treadmill? What are some of your favorite training workouts or tips?

Brittany 🙂

Brittany
02/26/16

What I’m Loving Lately #4

Now I have that song in my head from C&C Music Factory!!!! 🙂

Happy Friday!!! How is it almost March already?!?!… Time is flying but Spring is almost here and that makes it all worth it! Patios, warmer weather, baseball and cookouts are just a view of my favorite things about Spring! And here are a few things that I am loving at the moment….

Ripped Jeans

Totally obsessed with all of these…. I have been so into ripped jeans lately and want every pair I see! It is so easy to pair these with a leather jacket for an edgy look or you can pair with a sweater for a more casual vibe. With the warmer weather coming, ripped jeans are perfect for a transitional look.

Avocados

I have been craving these so much lately and realizing there are so many ways to eat them. They can be thrown in salads, mixed with tuna or a made into a low-fat guacamole dip. Avocados can be incorporated into any meal. I have recently discovered the baked egg in an avocado and its simply amazing!

Here is a recent recipe I found and its super easy. There are also several health benefits that are linked to avocados.

Babies!!!!!!!!! (baby fever)

I am having REAAAAALLLYYY bad baby fever lately! And these pictures are totally making it worse….. 🙂 I feel like my entire Facebook news feed is nothing but baby pictures and newborns. My husband and I both agree we do not want anymore kids (at the moment) especially with everything going on in our lives right now but every time I see a baby I WANT ONE!!!! For the time being, I am just getting my baby fix every now and then getting to hold our friends new babies 🙂

Ashley Graham

I think the picture speaks for itself but if you have not seen this yet, Ashley Graham is the first plus-size model to be on the cover of SI. She is killin it in that swimsuit. I think this speaks so much to our society and generation about body image. You should feel confident no matter what size or shape and SI has really stepped up and made it a reality. Kuddos to them! 🙂

The Bachelor

I am not embarrassed to say that this show has been an addiction of mine for awhile but this season has made it 10x worse. Ben is pretty hot and seems caring and honest but again this is tv so who knows how real all of it really is. I like to believe all of it is real and live in my own fantasy world 🙂

If you watch along with me, I was rooting for JoJo all season up until last Monday. I thought she was the only one that was pretty normal compared to most of the other crazies in the house but after seeing how she handled her ex-boyfriend situation and explaining it to Ben made me see her as shady. I am not one to judge because I have never been in that kind of situation but she still seems pretty hung up on her ex. I think she will probably be gone after next week but not sure who he picks in the end… What are y’alls predictions?

What are some things you are loving right now? 

Brittany 🙂

Brittany
02/24/16

10 things I would tell my 18 year old self….

Recently, one of my friends mentioned that the person she is today is definitely not the person she envisioned she would become when she was 20. This statement made me think a lot about myself and where I thought I wanted to be when I was that age. Since turning 30 last year I have really reflected on my late teens – early 20’s and I have to admit, it feels bittersweet. I honestly wouldn’t change a whole lot, because I feel blessed with the way things have worked out, but there are some things I wish the younger me knew then.

In honor of turning the big 3-0, here are the 10 things I’d tell my 18 year old self…

1.Your parents actually know what they’re talking about

The nagging from your mom about how to properly wash your clothes and the lectures from your dad about trying your hardest and saving your money, quickly go from eye roll-worthy to words to live by. I remember brushing off their advice, and as I look back, it truly could have helped me.This is the guidance I was too stubborn to accept, and if I had the opportunity, I would of paid attention to every word and changed things right then and there. There are so many other “important” things you are worried about at 18 that mom and dad usually get tuned out but they are the experts at life. Unfortunately, I realized this AFTER college!

2. Study, work hard and never dumb yourself down for a guy

There is no substitution for a big brain and the confidence to use your intelligence. I was never the Valedictorian or Top 10% in school but I did take school serious. For me, it was probably more important for athlete purposes since we had to have good grades at all times but school was top priority growing up. I carried this through college but since I was paying for half my college tuition, it became that much MORE important. I did however meet a guy in college that was pretty distracting and school became second. I was noticing my grades were not so great and my priorities were not where they needed to be. I would drop studying to hang with him and ignore school activities for party time.The older you get, the more you’ll realize that intelligence is a quality you’ll want in men and men will want in you. It’s a trait you should want for yourself as well.

3. Travel

Travel rips you out of your comfort zone and breaks you from your shell like nothing else. The world is not the scary and dangerous place the media makes out. It is full of wonder, love and excitement; new friends to be met, and experiences to be had, in all corners of the globe. (In college, I traveled back and forth from Dallas to Cincinnati going home from school but that was about the only traveling I did. I wish I would have explored the world when I was younger.) Book a flight, pack light, and prepare yourself for the most amazing and eye-opening adventures.

4. Make time for your family

Watching those close to you grow old is a very scary process. Make an effort to visit your grandparents on a weekly basis and offer to help with chores around the house. They have sacrificed more than you can ever imagine during your childhood and it’s time to start repaying them for this service, little by little.  Spend quality time with your parents, away from the technological distractions of the modern age. Sit around the dinner table and discuss life, what your plans are for the future and what you are passionate about doing.

5. Hold your friends close because you will hold your memories closer

This is real, though it may seem like a dream. It’s your first glimpse of freedom from high school and parents’ rules, and college is almost like a little village where all of your friends live. It will end, and it will end in the blink of an eye. Tell your friends how much you love them now, spend your time running around and doing crazy things and live every moment with them to the absolute fullest. This time will come to an end quickly, and the memories will mean everything to you. Hold on to them.

6. Save 10% of your paycheck and don’t touch it

It’s easy to look back and remember the joys of being broke because you spent all your paycheck on that awesome concert or night out on the town. But, I know the pain of the broken down car that you don’t have the money to fix, the misery of the credit card debt that you can’t pay off and the envy when your friends start buying adult things and you still have your car from high school. I never thought a savings account was important until I had to start paying my own bills. Buy what is important now and put the rest away. Moderation is a good thing, people.

7. You will meet people that will tear you down, lift you up, cut you off and push your limits. Embrace it.

This is the pivitol time of your life that you will learn so much about yourself, about the world, about people and about life. Sometimes, your friends will make you mad or turn against you. Get over it and move on. There will be times when you are down about something or someone and the right person will lift you up. Embrace them. My dance team coach was the most inspirational person I have ever met and to this day, I will always go to her for encouragement. Keep pushing yourself for that next goal, next obstacle or that next step in your life.

8. Ask lots of questions

The greatest ‘adventure’ is the ability to ask questions. Sometimes in the process of inquiry, the search is more significant than the answers.  Answers come from other people, from the universe of knowledge and history, and from the intuition and deep wisdom inside yourself.  These answers will never surface if you never ask the right questions. Just asking the question, is the biggest step you can make. There is nothing wrong with asking too many questions either. Curiosity is the key to success!

9. Focus on your strengths

Work on your weaknesses, of course, but not in a pointless sort of way. It’s okay if you’re bad at math or biochemistry. Its ok if you can write a 10 page paper about Taylor Swift but are not sure how to pay bills. That is where #8 comes in to play. It’s okay because you’re you. Find what you are good at and challenge yourself to be better at it. Don’t try to be something you’re not. Always be yourself!

10. NEVER GIVE UP

If there is any advise I could give myself or anyone it would be this one! This is probably the one thing I take with me everyday. Despite having faced numerous setbacks, I have always kept going, carrying “Never Give Up, just try one more time” as my motto. The outcome will be more than you ever expected!!!

But above all, laugh when you can, apologize when you should, and let go of what you can’t change.  Life is short, yet amazing.  Enjoy the ride.

What advise would you give yourself if you could go back? What is one thing you have learned along the way?

Brittany 🙂

Brittany
02/23/16

Garnier “Skin Active”Review

bottles

Do you have oily skin? As I have already mentioned before, my skin is pretty oily and very acne prone. I still cant figure out why or when it will EVER stop but I guess that’s life. My mom has always said she thinks its from sweat and working out. I’m always on the search for some type of serum, moisturizer, cream or face wash to try and control the oiliness of my skin. Usually, I will try something new probably wont see any change and go right back to my usual Neutrogena Acne Face Wash. Recently, I was introduced to Garnier’s new Skin Active line which is targeted for acne prone and oily skin. So it was only obvious that this was made for my skin… (or I hope at least) 🙂

Over the weekend I purchased two products that I had read great reviews about and saw amazing results:

Garnier Shine Control Cleansing Gel – Ulta $7.99

Garnier Pore Purifying Clay Mask – Ulta $8.99

I actually use some of their hair texturizing products so I have some trust in their products. Garnier’s new trio of products are all dermatologist & ophthalmologist tested for safety and are gentle on the skin. The clay (charcoal) mask was the main product I was really excited to try but I read that the cleanser helps with the oily skin as well. Charcoal has been all the rave when it was introduced in 2014 and since then a number of beauty brands have released products infused with this “secret weapon”! Let’s take a closer look at these Garnier products:

Step 1

Mask 2

Full Makeup

I absolutely love this product and cannot say enough good things about it. I never really thought I had oily skin, but discovered (after trying many different brands of cleansers) that I did. This is the only cleanser I found that thoroughly cleans my face without leaving it completely dry. I get a deep and invigorating clean that leaves my skin soft and smooth, not tight. As an added plus, the moisturizers in this product do not make the skin on my face feel greasy or more oily than it already is. All you need is one pump of this and it is powerful enough for your whole face. I love this stuff!

Mask 3

Cleanly washed face (a look into my struggle)

Step 2

Mask 4

This new creamy clay-based formula combines daily cleansing and a detox mask in one easy to use product. Activated charcoal is known to draw out oils and dirts that block the pores, eliminate blackheads and acne and detoxify the skin. Sounds good right? I was pretty excited to try it. The texture of the mask isn’t too thick or heavy so I actually appreciated that. I could feel the product start working within the first minute of applying. It was getting tighter the longer it stayed on and I could feel the tingling within the first few seconds. I let it set for about 7 minutes before I washed it off. I immediately saw a difference in my complexion and pores. My face felt silky smooth and OIL FREE!!! Amazing! I am hoping the more I use this product the less acne I see 🙂

Step 3

Mask 5

I completed the process with my latest obsession…. Philosophy Hope in a Jar! See my review here.

Overall, I would suggest these products if you do have oily or acne prone skin. I saw immediate results within the first use and could totally tell a difference in my pores and complexion. They are pretty affordable and smell amazing!

What do you think of the new Garnier skincare lines? Is there anything you’re wanting to try or recommend?

Brittany 🙂

Brittany
02/19/16

What I’m Loving Lately #3

Me driving to work this morning because………….. ITS FRIDAY!!!!! 🙂

It was a short week from the holiday but I am so glad its Friday. On my second cup of coffee and ready to tackle this day. Here is a roundup of things I have been loving lately… 🙂

Women’s Nike Roshe Runs 

Running shoes sale happening now! Buy Nike at up to 70% OFF retail prices. Click image to install the FREE app now. As featured in Cosmopolitan & Good Morning America.:

Nike Unisex Roshe Run Print $53 @lightningshoes EVERYONE! THIS IS FAKE!! I JUST GOT MY SHOES FROM THEM AND THEY ARE FAKE!!!!:

I have been eyeing these shoes for awhile but now I REALLY want to get a pair since the weather is so nice. They are so simple and chic and can be paired with leggings, workout gear or worn to the office. The last pair are at the top of my list 🙂

Mirrored Furniture

Since we are building our first house, all I can look at is new furniture. We have had the same furniture since we started dating so its only natural to want new stuff but the only thing I have been interested in is the shiny, mirrored furniture. I mean, its so pretty and matches EVERYTHING!!! 🙂

My husband is totally against it and thinks its way too girly but he got to pick the furniture the first go round so its only fair that I have a say so…. (he already owned the furniture when we met lol)

I mean how fabulous is this nightstand?!?!?!

I NEED THIS!!!!!!!

Carrie Underwood’s NEW Haircut

Or better yet Carrie Underwood’s EVERYTHING!! Legs, hair, voice, job… LIFE!! Jk, I love my life and am so blessed but she is beautiful, talented and can rock any dress or style. I have actually tried her leg workout from SELF magazine and its no joke. She definitely earns those killer legs!

She looked amazing at the Grammy’s when she sang a duet with Sam Hunt. She rocked her new hair cut with perfection 🙂

hair

hair 2

cw

#goals

Olive Bar

I am obsessed with the olive bar at Whole Foods. I recently discovered it while grabbing lunch one day and decided to try it out. Seems lately I have been starting to experiment with different foods that I used to hate when I was younger… olives was at the top of the list. Now I cant get enough.

I prefer salty over sweet so I figured they could probably be my new afternoon snack…. And I havent stopped eating them since!!!!

The mixed spanish olives are my favorite! If you have not checked out their olive bar, they have small containers you can taste the olives before taking any home. Amazing! 🙂

Hippie Juice

Since the weather is getting warmer by the minute, I decided it was only fitting to start making one of my favorite drinks. I always make this at the beginning of summer for cookouts or just hanging with friends at the house. It is super fruity and sweet but be warned, it’s a creeper… Sometimes you don’t realize that you are drinking it pretty quickly so after the first or second drink it will hit you 🙂

Hippie Juice one of the best drinks I've ever made! But be warned, it's a creeper... I used the quart sized mason jars. Add 4 scoops of the country time pink lemonade mix, 1 cup of Smirnoff Watermelon Vodka, 1/3 cup of Malibu Coconut Rum, 1/3 cup triple sec, and top off with water and a few chopped (or frozen) strawberries.:

 I used the quart sized mason jars. Add 4 scoops of the country time pink lemonade mix, 1 cup of Smirnoff Watermelon Vodka, 1/3 cup of Malibu Coconut Rum, 1/3 cup triple sec, and top off with water and a few chopped strawberries!!! If you like sweet drinks you will probably be a fan. Let me know what you think 🙂

So on that note… cheers to the weekend!

What are you loving right now? Any big plans for the weekend?

Brittany 🙂

Brittany