Star Spangled Celebrations

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The view from the deck of the house we stayed at, and some Finger Lakes wine! πŸ˜€

Hey everyone! I hope you guys all had a great Fourth weekend! I had an absolute blast spending the long weekend with a few of my best girlfriends, their husbands, friends and family on Seneca Lake in New York. For those not familiar with the area, Seneca Lake is the largest (38 miles long and 3 miles wide at its widest point) and deepest (with an average depth of 291 feet/89 meters, and a maximum depth at a staggering 618 feet/188 meters) of the eleven Finger Lakes. Back in the day, the Finger Lakes were originally streams that were then formed into lakes by a receding glacier. The Laurentide ice sheet, pushing forward all the way south to the Hudson River valley, and then receding back over the Great Lakes, carved out the Finger Lakes region by deepening and widening the existing river valleys, and dammed up the existing streams to form the lakes. This all went down about 2 million years ago, in the Pleistocene Glaciation (the important things you remember from elementary school). You can still see some pretty serious cliffs carved out by the receding glacier right along the edges of Seneca and Cayuga Lake. Also thanks to the Laurentide ice sheet, the region has its own unique macroclimate, perfect for growing wine-making grapes, with Seneca Lake having the most surrounding wineries (50+) in the Finger Lake region. Nowadays, it’s the best spot in Upstate New York to vacation in the summer, because the lakes are clear and deep so you don’t feel the seaweed tickling your feet when you jump off the dock. And there is lots of WINE. So now you’ve just learned something, and it’s not even noon yet.

Not only did I have a fantastic time, I count this weekend as highly successful because I didn’t go off the rails; I tracked all of my food to keep an eye on the amount of protein I consumed (even the 12 marshmallows* and 5 graham crackers I ate – no joke, I really ate that many), and did something active everyday. And then something magical happened: since I stayed active (the day of my long run, I took over 30,000 steps) and was eating healthy, I felt zero guilt over having a good time, and busted out ALL of the bubbles and ALL of the booyah to celebrate on the Fourth. BAM! There’s always time to reward yourself when you’re busting your ass. πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

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Happy Birthday, America! πŸ˜€

How did I do this? I pre-planned all of my meals and brought all of my own food to eat (Thank God for Wegmans, which I stopped at on the way). When you know you’re going to be running around all day, you have to keep it simple, so I did:

Breakfast: Overnight muesli with fruit and nut butter

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Lunch: Giant salad with tofu

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Booyah lunch salad: baby spinach and mixed greens, grape tomato, red onion, grated carrot, 1/2 avocado, baked tofu, orange bell pepper and blueberries.

Snacks: Fruit, veggies & hummus and/or toast and nut butter

Dinner: Veggie burgers, grilled veggies, salad, local New York corn (aka the best), any available vegan food

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Double-decker veggie burger sandwich with two Amy’s All American veggie burger, three slices of wheat bread, lettuce, tomato and Dijon mustard, with mixed greens.

Is it boring to eat basically the same things everyday for three days? For me, not really. I’ve eaten overnight oats virtually every day for the past year and I’m still obsessed with it. After eating veggie burgers all weekend though, I’m definitely ready for something different and looking forward to making some more creative meals this week. πŸ™‚

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Sunrise over Seneca Lake on the morning of my long run.

On Friday I got up wicked early (5:30 am) and went for a 10.5 mile run around (a very small) part of the lake. The views were stunning, the air was crisp, fresh and still a little chilly, the roads were quiet – it was long run perfection. My pace was super slow (+1:30 min from my “normal” pace – yikes), and I had to give myself a little internal lecture on not being to too hard on myself for being a slowski. Running in the summer is difficult for me; the combination of pollen, humidity and asthma isn’t really a winner. However, I was rewarded for my efforts by doing a post-run lakeside yoga session with my (sorority) sister R, who recently completed her yoga training and is now a certified yoga instructor and BAMF.

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Here is R’s super cute bum. She will probably now shank me for posting this, but this was the only shot I had. πŸ˜‰

It was still early, and R led us in a silent meditation for a few minutes before our practice. Our practice was really peaceful, calming and centering and reminded me that I really, really need to get back into going to yoga regularly. I felt spectacular afterwards, and did not have as much muscle soreness as usual. Yoga for the win.

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View from the boathouse πŸ™‚

On the morning of the Fourth, R really wanted to kayak across the lake, which is about 2 miles wide. It was super windy and the waves were gigantic in the middle of the lake. Just imagine the two of us in little tiny lake kayaks, getting blasted by white caps as we paddle for our lives. It was definitely a fun adventure! And I have the calluses and blisters on my hands to prove it. πŸ˜‰

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Yup, we paddled all the way to the other side and back (~4 miles in total), and then we felt like total rock stars for the rest of the day. This photo was taken the first day, when the lake was calm. On the Fourth, there were huge 3 foot waves with white caps, the lake was the opposite of chill.

We spent the afternoon grilling, hanging, lighting illegal fireworks and having waaaay too much fun.

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Portabellos and bell peppers being prepped by the Booyah Grill Master!!

Also, this was my Fourth of July outfit inspiration:

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All in all – a freakin’ fabulous time. This is what we live for! πŸ˜€ I hope you guys had an equally fantastic weekend, too.

Now I want to hear about your Fourth weekend! Or Canada Day weekend! Or early July summer weekend! Tell me what you guys were up to in the comments! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

Happy Monday! Six days until my birthdayyyyyyyyyy! WOOOHOOOO!!!

With warmth,

L

*PS: I know that marshmallows aren’t vegan, or even vegetarian – that was my one and only cheat thus far. And I forgot to buy the vegan marshmallows at Wegmans, I was super super sad. But not sad enough to not eat the marshies. Also, since I very rarely eat such sugary food that isn’t fruit or fruit based (like Larabars), it tasted SOOOOOO incredibly sweet! Like almost too sweet – but still tasted like childhood summer. πŸ™‚

NYC Midnight Half Packing List

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Hi everyone and Happy Friday! In lieu of Friday Faves, I wanted to share my packing essentials for my upcoming weekend NYC trip. I always find these packing lists helpful when others share them, so I wanted to spread the wealth. I’ll also be posting my OOTD pics on my Instagram account @bubblesandbooyah, so you’ll be able to see how what I packed translates into actual outfits. I’m staying 3 nights and 3 days in New York, and the weather is varying between sunny and 80Β°F (26Β°C) today to 61Β°F (16Β°C) and rainy on Monday.

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Here’s what I packed:

  • Yellow patterned cardigan sweater (from Targ-ay, a million years ago!)
  • Brightly colored raincoat (seen previously on my post L’s Spring Running Essentials)
  • 2 Summer-y dresses, in jersey (easily fold-able and can be dressed up/down)
  • Free To Be Wild Bra from Lulu (also a throwback Friday Fave)
  • Flowy Free People top (for going out/being casual)
  • Jean shorts
  • Lounge/brunch outfit: Athleta tank top, Lulu wunder under crops
  • Race outfit (x 2, because I couldn’t decide): 2 shorts / 2 tanks / 1 sports bra / 2 pairs of legit running socks
  • Racing sneakers
  • Jazzy flat sandals
  • PJ’s
  • Lots of accessories: 2 long necklaces, a stack of wrap bracelets, fun rings and dangly earrings
  • Race essentials: gels, iPhone arm band, inhaler, portable water bottle, headphones

All of that stuff PLUS my toiletries/makeup fit into my fave travel backpack from Lulu. Also, since I can never travel without food, I packed a few packets of oatmeal, Justin’s nut butter packets and a protein bar. BAM. I’m a packing monster!

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I am SUPER STOKED to see my BFF Britt and for this race/our adventure to complete this race. We may be slow, and tie for last place, but we will have 10,000 times more fun than anyone else, no doubt.

Here’s some more info on the Midnight Half organized by the Orchard Street Runners:

http://orchardstreetrunners.com/the-midnight-half/

Wish us good luck! We will DEF need it.

With warmth,

L

xoxox ❀

L’s Trail Half Marathon Race Recap

15 seconds.

If I finished 15 seconds faster, I would have snagged a podium spot for my age group.

What. The. F***.

The thing that really bothers me is that, when I started the race, I was holding back. I was running with my friend because I didn’t really know what to expect. Screw that, I should have just taken off right outta the gate. Lesson learned: always run a race like you’re trying to snag that podium spot. Or, you’ll end up feeling like me – Mayor of Race Regret City over here.

Let’s see how the Real Housewives feel about that:

tAnd…

RHBH

Wait one more…

Are-you-fucking-kidding-me-GIF_1Yep. That about sums it up.

However, since I’ve been MIA all week, let’s back up the bus.

1. I totally fell off the vegan wagon while I was in DC for the weekend (again). I ate pizza Friday night, and eggs Saturday morning in the name of carbo-loading (a good justification is always needed for these situations) and I have no regrets.

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IMG_0068Wine is a carb, right?? πŸ˜‰

2. The night before the race I whipped up a batch of Vegan Linguine alla Puttanesca and it was BOMB. You can find the recipe here.

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3. I specifically removed my “in case of emergency” cold weather running gear before I left to make room for a pair of cute shoes in my suitcase. Mistake.

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It was f***ing cold. My hands were totally messed up the rest of the day because of how little circulation they got. I survived though. Because I’m tough as nails, duh.

4. For breakfast on race day, I ate a bowl of Evoke Athlete Fuel muesli. If you want to know why I love them so hard right now, read about it in last week’s Friday Faves.

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Yum. I topped it off with Wild Friends Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter – soooo gooood.

5. Here’s my super cute race day outfit.

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I basically wore a Lululemon store. All Sport Bra in blue camo (camo obv bc I’m on a mission), Cool Racerback tank, double layer of long sleeve swiftlys, Trail Bound 7/8 tight and my new super dope Saucony Peregrine 4 Trail Running Shoes.

It was fantastic – everything ended up being just right, despite the unexpected cold temps. I’m glad I was indecisive and packed two swiflys because I couldn’t pick which one I wanted to wear – the double layer kept me warm for the first two miles until my internal furnace reached normal operating temperatures.

6. I drank my first FULL BEER in 14 years post-race to celebrate (the last full beer I drank was a Molson double label* underage in a parking lot in Upstate New York). If you’re new to B & B, or you just don’t know me that well, that is a big deal – I am a strictly wine and spirit kinda gal. If I am out at a bar, and you see me holding a beer, that means I am in MAJ TROUB and I need to be shipped home IMMEDIATELY. However, I liked it! It was delicious! Minus the fact that I was so cold I was shaking, and was drinking an ice cold beer, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s only taken me 14 years, but I can still become a beer drinker YET. Why the hell not.

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Even B couldn’t believe it.

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Yup.

*7. What’s a Molson double label?

molsonThey were a staple in Western/Upstate New York back in the day, when I was a delinquent underage drinker. Because where I grew up is basically a high-five away from The Great White North (i.e. Canada). Now you know *ding*.

My favorite one was “Trust me, I’m a Scientist.” <— this still applies in my real life.

My second favorite was “The boots stay on.” <— no comment. πŸ˜‰

8. OMG stop talking about all this random shiz. What about the actual race, L?

The actual race was AMAZING. I’m totally in LOVE with trail racing!!!!!! I spent the majority of it running on single track all by myself (sometimes singing, sometimes cursing, sometimes just enjoying the view), and I didn’t EVEN FALL. I did see lots of wipe-outs, though – it was muddy in the second half. I had a near miss when I came upon a steep decline with lots of momentum and literally slid on my shoes (still upright!) while screaming like a 10 year old girl (probably sounded like someone was getting murdered in the woods), and then had to try to control my breathing while laughing hysterically, thinking I was alone, until I heard, “Well that was pretty epic!” and turned around to find a guy with an ear to ear grin on his face. At least someone saw that, and got to enjoy it besides me. Haha. Captain of the Klutz Team over here. What’s up.

Even though I missed the podium by 15 seconds, I still gave it my all up til the final minute and sprinted the last bit in all the way to the finish. Obv, I wish I had started sprinting earlier, but for my first trail race, I’ll take it and stop grumbling. πŸ™‚

All in all, it was super rad. I loved it. I will now proceed to do all the trail races I can get my hands on, wooohooo!!

How was everyone’s week?? I missed you guys a lot! What are you up to this weekend? Tell me all about everything I missed and what you’re up to this weekend in the comments.

With warmth,

L

xoxoxox

L in DC: Weekend Recap!

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The gorgeousness of DC. I love that you can see the Washington Monument from pretty much everywhere (ok, I mean – at least where I was).

Guys! I think I need the delinquent blogger award, because I didn’t even take any pictures while I was down in DC this past weekend. I was having so much fun I forgot I was supposed to be capturing it! Whoops! PS: I’ve also limited my “Vegan for Lent” situation to while I’m in Boston Metro (oopsie – but dude, it was tricky/I have no regrets). Here are some of the highlights:

Cocktails

Does anyone want to grab a drink? πŸ˜‰

Mission Dupont – Dupont Circle

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Exterior of Mission – it looks way cooler lit up at night!

I met up with friends for drinks after eating some incredibly amazing Ethiopian food on U Street (that was probably not vegan, but definitely vegetarian and DELICIOUS). The first stop was Mission Dupont, a restaurant/bar in Dupont Circle that serves house-made cocktail creations with fresh squeezed juices – YUM! Everyone’s favorite drink of the night was their pineapple jalapeno margarita (I am not friends with tequila, so that one was not my favorite but I’m working through it) that was served with a hunk of fresh pineapple and muddled jalapenos at the bottom of the glass. I had an amazing gin cocktail with fresh-squeezed lime juice, soda water and …something else that I forgot (I was having a good time, what can I say?). YUM! All in all, pretty good atmosphere and fun vibes.

Firefly – Dupont Circle (kinda?)

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Inside of Firefly – there was a giant tree!

We eventually migrated down New Hampshire Street to Firefly, for more of a bar/lounge-y vibe just in time for last call (it’s also attached to a hotel, so there’s that). I ordered a Sub Rosa, a cocktail made with Absolute Citron Vodka, St. Germain, Averna Amaro, hibiscus syrup, rose water, Peychaud’s Bitters – which frankly tasted a like cough syrup-y (sad face – it sounded so good when I ordered it!). My friend, however, ordered a Late Harvest cocktail, made with Brokers gin, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, lemon, red grapes. First of all – it was PHENOMENAL. Also, it’s made with muddled grapes – I’ve never thought of using fresh grapes in a drink before, but I am ALL over it! It tasted fresh, light and absolutely divine. If you guys go there – get that. Seriously worth a trip. Our bartender Chris was super fun and sassy and we had a great time chatting with him as well – good times all around. πŸ™‚

Brunch

Brunch is the best meal ever, isn’t it? DC definitely did not disappoint.

La Diplomate – Logan Circle

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Le Diplomate

I loved this spot! As soon as you walk in, you are greeted with an upscale French cafe vibe, with thoughtfully chic architecture and decor (I immediately regretted that I was wearing head to toe Lulu and not real clothes). If it wasn’t only 30ish degrees out, I would have happily spent the afternoon dining “en plain air” in the seasonally outdoor cafe. The food and service were equally impressive, and seemed to warrant the restaurant’s popularity. My Saturday morning brunch was very un-vegan: I ordered an Egg White Omelet with Ratatouille. The Ratatouille was seriously delicious (YUM) but the most outstanding part of brunch was the basket of fresh, crusty bread made in-house that they brought to your table (Dude, who doesn’t love fresh bread? I would have happily gone for seconds). My friend ordered the Spinach Omelet with goat cheese that was pretty bomb, and I’d definitely recommend it if you’re hitting this spot for brunch (especially since it tasted better than mine)! Sadly, I skipped the mimosas because I probably still had some alcohol in my blood from the night before – but the cocktail menu looked extensive and exciting. πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜›

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The bread at Le Diplomate – noms!

Tryst – Adams Morgan

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This is the place to plop down on a couch with your laptop and spend the day sipping their amazing lattes and people watching. Tryst has a chill atmosphere and laid-back vibe – as in they provide animal crackers on the saucer with their Direct-Trade coffee drinks, mismatched silverware and a surprisingly extensive menu. Even though it was packed on Sunday morning, the huge windows and high ceilings still gave a feeling of openness, and the foiled ceiling and vintage-y couches made me feel like I was in a prime hipster hot spot (I was). I ordered a soy Chaipuccino (a Chai with a shot of espresso in it) to start, which alone is worth coming back for. Their brunch menu was HUGE and had just about anything you could want – I chose a Spinach Frittata, made with sauteed spinach, shallots, Gruyere and eggs, and served warm with a side of fresh fruit. It was fantastic and the perfect sized pre-flight meal. YUM! My friend ordered the Lemon Poppy Seed waffle, which was perfectly light, fluffy and lemon-y and served with a homemade blueberry sauce that was out of this world. Between the two, I satisfied my savory/sweet tastes that I always crave at brunch, making me feel perfectly content before heading home to Boston. Also, it’s worth noting that they had plenty of vegan options that I ignored, since I already had plenty of eggs, butter and cheese during the weekend – what’s one more meal? πŸ˜‰ Tryst was definitely also a winner. πŸ™‚

All in all, I had a fantastic time and felt like I got a great introduction to the DC nightlife and great brunch spots (I’m hooked!). Also, you guys in DC have like ZERO snow compared to us in Boston, so it was glorifying to walk around with no gloves, or hat, and I could see the sidewalk (and the opposite side of the street, with the absence of the gigantic snow mounds). Such a fun city! Refreshing, and exciting – and I can’t wait to come back!! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

What did you guys do this weekend?? Tell me all about it in the comments.

With warmth,

L

PS: I’m just going to leave this here for you because it’s Monday (just in case):

Weight-Loss-Quotes4

Booyah Bootcamp!

Many of you have read my post about theΒ Booyah JarΒ last week and were wondering how my fitness journey was going on vacation. Well, I let my 10 month old nephew pick my exercises today, and was rewarded with a great core workout!! Here is what my nephew picked:

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I nominated my sister to be my official B & B blog photographer in order to capture Booyah Bootcamp in action!

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Side Plank, each side for 30 seconds.

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V-Ups – I added a twist to kick it up a notch πŸ˜‰

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Reverse burpees – if you don’t know what they are, they are basically a burpee with the normal jump, and then you tuck into a ball and roll backwards (instead of a push-up). They are toughhh but are a great core workout! And kind of fun (in a twisted way). πŸ˜›

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Weeeeee!!! Frog Jumps – one of my favorite ways to BLAST my legs. πŸ˜€

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Woooohooo, mid-launch on the frog jumps!

Let me tell you – it ain’t bad doing Booyah Bootcamp by the pool in Florida (even though it’s overcast and humid today, it’s 75F!! I’ll take it because I know I won’t be wearing shorts and tank in Boston for a long time!). After going through the exercises three times with a rest in between (prob should have done 4 but I was really just feeling 3 – I think I can get a special vaca dispensation), I went for a quick 3.3 mile run on the beach for cardio and called it a day. Now I’m ready to shop with my mom, sister and nephew while we get a few thunderstorms rolling through this afternoon. I hope you all are having wonderful days today!! Sending warmth your way (there isn’t much for sunshine at the moment).

With warmth,
L πŸ˜€

Good morning from Florida!

Hi all!! I’m just here to write a quick hi from Florida and wish you all a great Monday! I’m writing to you all from the lanai – it’s already 70 F here (wooohoo!). This morning I went on a sunrise beach walk with my sister and my nephew. It was an absolutely stunning and refreshing way to start my morning. I’ve been running like a maniac here – the sunshine and gulf air have been really motivating, so I’ve been doing a pretty awesome 6+ mile loop every morning. Today I’m taking it easy. At some point today, I’ll be doing a sweet Booyah Bootcamp built from the contents of the Booyah Jar. Check my Instagram feed for what I pull out later!! πŸ™‚ With that I’ll leave you some phots from my walk.

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My sister capturing the sunrise with my nephew in the ergo carrier πŸ™‚ My heart melts for that little dude!

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Sending all the Florida warmth and sunshine your way!! Especially up North where it is cold and stormy today!! ❀

With warmth,

L

PS: Today is my half birthday! Approximately ten years ago today, I went to a fraternity party in full birthday regalia and convinced everyone it was my real birthday by shouting “IT’S MY BIRTHDAYYYY!” …until my best friend B blew up my spot (and my sister outed me on Facebook – I bet I would have gotten away with it had it not been another girl’s actual birthday, whoops!) Whatevs, I believe these things should be celebrated regardless. So I’ll be wearing my imaginary birthday crown today and whoop-ing it up! I encourage you all to do the same just cuz. it’s Monday, it’s January – why not just add a little extra sparkle to today?? πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜€ Happy Monday All!!!

L On-the-Go – Tropical Style!

Well, I’ve finally finished doing my least favorite thing ever – packing!! – all while gabbing with my bestie on the phone and having a full fledged fashion show in my bedroom for way longer than necessary. I even risked setting the jeans avalanche free from the top shelf of my closet while I was digging around trying to find my running visor I stowed up there sometime in August. I do, however, love writing these posts because I usually find them super helpful when reading other people’s packing essentials. I’m heading to Florida for 7 nights and 6 days, and the weather right now is between 70 and 80Β°F (gorgeous). If you’ve read any of my previous posts, my one requirement is that everything must fit into a carry-on approved roller bag (bc I am not into checking bags – I like to stow and go).

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Here’s What I Packed:

  • 3 cute dresses (one super casual that can double as a swim cover, a maxi and a regular dress)
  • 1 pair of jean shorts
  • A ton of athletic shorts (6 pairs – don’t judge me)
  • 6 pairs of socks/3 headbands
  • 4 short sleeve shirts (one Lulu swiftly that can be worn running)
  • 4 tank tops (that can be worn in real life/layered and while working out) + 3 tanks (that will definitely get sweaty and gross on long runs)
  • 3 bathing suits (bc I’m a female and obv need three different ones)
  • 2 pairs of crops (casual/active wear)
  • 1 pair of skinny jeans + 1 long sleeve shirt + 1 zip up jacket (to worn if it’s cool in morning/evenings, and on the way home)
  • Sports bras
  • 1 cardigan (if it’s cold, or to be layered over tanks/dresses)
  • Water bottle, arm band, gels, inhaler, bodyglide, extra sunnies (all the essentials for long runs)
  • Extra packets of oatmeal for snacks
  • Red Sox hat and running visor (bc I’m a ginger)
  • Various accessories – long necklace, chunky necklace, bracelets
  • Booyah jar (transferred into a Ziploc bag)
  • Chargers for phone and Garmin watch

….And it all fits!

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Well I’m off to bed. I have an early day tomorrow!

Goodnight all!

L ❀