Friday Faves!

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Canandaigua Lake, NY

Happy Friday! Guys, I’m really stoked – this time next week, I will be in the Finger Lakes in New York with two of my nearest and dearest besties who I haven’t seen in far too long!! I cannot wait! So pumped. Anyway, let’s get right into what I’ve been feeling this week:

1. Supreme Court Rules for Marriage Equality Nationwide!

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F YEAH AMERICA!!!!! LOVE IS LOVE. The end.

2. Svelte Organic Protein Shake in Cappuccino

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I have to give my gym buddy R credit for this one, who recently introduced me to these supremely amazing shakes. Since we are in the 5 am wake up crew, it’s hard to eat that early in the morning (at least for me) before our morning workouts start at 5:45 am. These shakes are the perfect quick pre-work out pick me up before you start doing burpees at the crack of dawn. And of course they are vegan, gluten free and made from non-GMO soy. Each shake contains 11 grams of protein, 20% of your daily fiber intake, only 6 grams of sugar and clock in at 180 calories. We down half of our shake before our workout, and save the second half for our commute to work when our stomachs are literally digesting themselves. Ever since I read the study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning ResearchΒΉ that suggests that consuming some protein and carbohydrates prior to your training session can reduce the amount of muscle damage caused by intense exercise, I try to put something good into my stomach before my morning workout. These shakes have helped me to be a little more consistent with eating before working out, and are so delicious they go down easy first thing in the morning. The first time I had one, I downed the whole thing because it was that tasty (and then I kinda wanted to vom after doing dozens of Stop, Drop & Roll Burpees in class – hence why I stick with only half πŸ˜‰ ).

1. Baty, J.J., H. Hwang, Z. Ding, J.R. Bernard, B.Wang, B. Kwon, and J.L. Ivy. The effect of a carbohydrate and protein supplement on resistance exercise performance, hormonal response, and muscle damage.Β J. Strength Cond. Res. 2007.

3. Yes To Pomegranate SPF 15 Naturally Smooth Lip Balm

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I picked some of this up from Tar-jay because I was looking for a lip balm with an SPF to bring to the beach. I haven’t had much luck with some of the other brands I tried out (like the brand that rhymes with Hurts Knees, whose SPF lip balm made my lips look white, and me look like a corpse). This one is decent – it’s all natural, cruelty-free and petroleum/paraben free. The pomegranate flavor is two thumbs up, and the moisturizing aloe, cocoa, and shea butter combo is very hydrating. This lip balm has definitely earned a place in my beach bag this summer. πŸ™‚

4. The Weeknd – Can’t Feel My Face

Best song of the summer so far. πŸ˜€ Dance party commence!

5. Some Links I’m Loving:

Real Women in Victoria’s Secret Swimsuits

Best Races for Wine Lovers ❀

What are you guys up to this weekend? I’ll be mellow yellow hanging around my hood! Looking forward to having a relaxing weekend with a long run, and lots of R & R. Tell me what you’re up to in the comments!!
πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

With warmth,
L

NYC Midnight Half Marathon – Part Three

I’ve been very successful at making lists recently, so I think I’m just going to continue this trend from Part One. Then I’ll be able to tell you exactly how to celebrate post-half marathon, and you can just go down this list and check shiz off as you complete each activity. So, what aaaare you supposed to do post-half?

(Missed it? Read how it all went down here: Part Deux).

1. SLEEEEEEP. Post-race and post-pizza, B and I went back to our Airbnb, showered in record time, and collapsed in bed. As soon as I was horizontal, I only answered B with “Mmhmm”s and fell asleep in less than 15 seconds of my head hitting the pillow. I was basically a corpse, and did not move from 3:36 am until 10:50 am. Also I do not recall the last time I slept past 7 am, so that truly was a feat on my part. Amazeballs.

2. Let your inner fat kid run free. B and I have high level experience with pleasing our inner fatties – in college, we would routinely each buy a large side of home fries and down them by alternating dunking them into ranch and Frank’s Red Hot. This = life (as well as the best hangover food, ever). So, it really was no surprise when we decided to eat two breakfasts: one at Steeplechase en route to brunch and actual brunch at Tom’s, both in Brooklyn.

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Breakfast #1 at Steeplechase

At Steeplechase (whose iced coffee is bomb, BTW), we each got a breakfast pastry to sustain us as we walked two miles through Prospect Park to Tom’s. PS: Thanks Miguel for picking us up (mad face).

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Tromping through Prospect Park towards Second Breakfast.

At Tom’s, which is apparently the best breakfast place in Brooklyn according to our gracious hosts, Diggy delivered YET AGAIN (even the Russian judges give you a 10/10, Diggy). Brunch was amazing, satisfying and delicious: exactly what I needed to refuel post-race. Also, B got a Waffle Sundae, and she’s my breakfast hero. If you are in Brooklyn, or go near Brooklyn, do yourself a favor and get brunch here. You won’t be disappointed. Plus they feed your french fries while you wait in line.

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Breakfast #2 at Tom’s

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I couldn’t fit all the food we ordered into one pic/B wins at breakfast.

3. Go outside – preferably to a park. Like Prospect Park. Blobbing outside is far superior to blobbing on your couch watching Netflix the day after a race, so get your bum outside, sit down, get hit in the torso by a Frisbee (thanks again, Miguel!), sit next to your BFF, put your phone into a solo cup so everyone can hear your jams and play this:

Yup. Fave new song.

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Miguel + Sunny skies. And my forehead. Can you handle these picture taking skillz right na?

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Omg we all have matching sunnies. πŸ˜€

4. BUBBLES! Go buy yourself a bottle (or two) of brut rose that comes in an all silver bottle, such as:

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Whatever that was, it was amazing. Now, drinking alcohol in parks is not allowed, but I’m not going to tell anyone what’s in your solo cup. We cool like that. Cheers to bubbles!

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So that, my friends, is how you celebrate after you punch a half marathon in the face. Get it.

With warmth,

L

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:

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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):

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Friday Faves, wooohoo!

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It’s finally Friday! I’m heading to DC for a little weekend getaway, and I’m pretty pumped! I can’t wait to leave the 5 feet of snow behind for 48 hours. Here is what I’ve been feeling this week:

1. Sesame Street House of Bricks Video – House of Cards Parody

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This is very relevant since I’ll be traveling to DC for the weekend. If you watched the Netflix show House of Cards (and are as excited as I am that the third season comes out TODAY), then this is a must watch. My sister sent it to me earlier this week and it was so good I had to watch it twice. On point, Sesame Street! πŸ˜€

2. Lady Gaga’s Sound of Music Tribute

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I was totally blown away by Lady Gaga’s tribute to the Sound of Music at the Oscars. I knew she was musically talented at an epic level (I actually became an even bigger Lady Gaga fan when I heard her interview on the Howard Stern Show where she sung unplugged versions of her songs while playing piano), but – WOW. I never get tired of hearing her sing – the hills are aliiiiive with the sound of Gaga KILLLINGGG ITTTT! Fantastic. I got goosebumps listening to her sing – it’s definitely worth checking out.

3. Oscar Fashion Faves: Lupita and Emma

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Lupita owned the Oscars’ red carpet for the second year in a row. She looked STUNNING in her pearl-encrusted, open-backed Calvin Klein Collection dress – a look I found to be unexpected and exciting. Ah-mazing. Emma Stone was second runner up in her slinky and sparkly chartreuse (a FAVE color to wear, as I am a redhead) Elie Saab gown. I especially love Emma’s peachy-coral lip and how her “lob” (read: long bob) was styled in a 1930’s soft wave. Gorge!

4. These Vegan Leather Jackets

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It’s still only about 20Β°F / -6Β°C in Boston today, but I am really looking forward to mixing up my wardrobe with more Winter-to-Spring transitional pieces, and these vegan leather jackets fit the bill! They are not fug (as I sometimes think vegan leather things can be), and each have a different fun vibe. I would rock the sh*t out of the black one with the fringe, but the drapey gray one would be more versatile, as you could dress it up and wear it to the office or out to dinner. The gray one is the perfect jacket to layer over some dark skinnys and a tucked-in blouse, or a cute dress and heels for going out. I also just love the tough, street-vibe of the black fringe jacket – so fun and would add a dose of style to the simplest outfit (even over jeans and a white T, you would look edgy and smokin’). Both would look especially cute layered over…

5. This Transitional Free People Dress free people

I love me some Free People. Even my best friend B’s mom thinks of me when she sees Free People stuff! If I didn’t work at a science-y job, I would wear this all day every day. I’m loving the boho chic/hippe vibe. It’s my fave brand and constitutes a lot of my most-loved weekend wardrobe pieces (especially in the spring/summer). This flowy mini-dress has a very spring-y feel to it, with the floral embroidery, bright berry color and relaxed fit, and bonus – it has a super cute back cutout. It would look adorbs with tights, boots and a jacket for now, and super cute with sandals and a Panama hat for the warmer temps. Add a long necklace and some fun bracelets and you’ve got yourself the perf weekend outfit that will take you from brunch to drinks.

6. The Vegetti

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The Queen of all Spiralizers, with the best/most inappropriate-sounding name ever, it was the star of some great jokes last weekend with my sister and brother-in-law. Now that Spring is looming ahead, I am ready to trade in my vegetable peeler for the real deal in order to make oodles of zoodles and carrot vermicelli. Plus it will amp up your salad game to all-star level. I am all about the kitchen gadgets that make it easy to make healthy choices, or just to try something new! PS: It’s seriously called that:

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I don’t know who their marketing person was, but I wish I was in that room when they came up with the name. πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜›

7. This Dome Perignonβ„’ Mountain Hardwear Hat

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Before winter is completely over, I have to give a shout out to the best hat ever. It is made with windproof fleece and keeps your ears/head warm in the most blustery and miserable conditions (aka the entire Boston winter starting in January). I ran in a literal blizzard wearing this hat when I was home in Western New York, and I was almost too warm. My entire family has one. No, seriously – my entire family. Mom, Dad, sister, brother-in-law, me…we all match like nerds when it’s really cold out. Totally amazing, couldn’t have survived the winter without it.

I hope you guys have an amazing Friday and weekend! What are you guys up to this weekend? Tell me all about it in the comments.

With warmth,

L

xoxox

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 ❀