What I'm Loving on Friday - Cleaning Out Closets

[Yes, because we all clean our closets while wearing yellow heels.]
Cleaning Out Closets

If you know me personally, you are probably ROFLing right now, in a fit at the sight of my saying I enjoy anything about the cleaning process. But I swear it's not just because every time we watch "Hoarders," my boyfriend warns me that is how our apartment will look if I keep holding onto cardboard boxes because, well, "what if we need to mail a package to someone sometime??"

Over the past week, I have been slowly digging through my dresser drawers and closets, purging them of anything that's just taking up space and that I'll never wear again. While my t-shirt drawer downsized a fraction of the size I would have liked (you can never have too many t-shirts! What if I need an old shirt to paint in or something?!?! Stop looking at me like that!), I was able to let go of a lot in my closets that I haven't worn in ages.

Folks, I was still holding onto stuff I had IN HIGH SCHOOL. And not even just senior year of high school. We're talking a shirt I got from Delia's (Yeah.) when I was 16. I've got pants old enough to have seen Jesse Camp win MTV's "I Wanna be a VJ" competition. These clothes were manufactured in a different century, kiddos. They had to go.

I also dumped about 10 pair of pants that are way too big for me and I intend to keep it that way. See ya, fat clothes, you're not welcome back!

I now have decent space in my closets and empty hangers, just screaming at me to fill (hopefully not with trends that only last one season. Like the cloth gaucho pants I threw away this week... Gauchos? Come on girls, why did we ever allow those to come back???). It will be a relief to dump the bags off at Goodwill, never to be seen again. It's so nice to now look into my closets and say "I really, really like about 95% of all of you. And I will be seeing you soon."

Now I just gotta clear out the shoes....


What I'm loving on Saturday - Daily Mile

Daily Mile

So, by now we all are aware that I'm back into running and enjoying every second of it. I'm slowly building up my miles, and at this point I think my "double digits by the end of summer" is going to be "double digits by the end of June." This is something I am proud of.

Another tool (besides my lovely Garmin Forerunner 305) that's been helping with my progress is Daily Mile, a social media site (yeah, like we need one more, right?) for exercisers. Daily Mile has quickly become maybe my favorite social media site for one BIG reason - the warm fuzzies people dish out in a snap. You post your workout for the day (run, cycle, fitness workout, hike, etc.) along with the miles you put in an the time, and it seems like within minutes, people are commenting on how well you're doing. It's the ultimate motivation for any exerciser, and it's so amazing to feel that these people you barely know are rooting you on. 

Another thing I love about Daily Mile is that you can track other people's workouts. If you're just not feeling it that day and you log on and see all the miles your friends are putting in, you immediately want to get out and put in just as much work (that is, if you are a fitness-competitive freak, such as myself). I love comparing mileage and pace with other people, which just pushes me to go faster and be stronger. This may not be the intended purpose of Daily Mile, but some of us need competition to motivate us further....

Lastly, if you want another reason to enjoy Daily Mile, you have people you follow who do awesome things like this (pay attention to the runner's name, and the map of the course he ran), that just make your day and realize that, in the end, you can win all the trophies on Earth, but if you're not having fun with it, you're running for all the wrong reasons.


What I'm loving on Saturday - Garmin Forerunner 305

The Garmin Forerunner 305

Now that it's spring and the weather is warming up (despite what seems to be a never-ending cycle of hellacious winds...), I am so excited to be taking my workouts outdoors. Not that my indoor exercises have been ineffective, I've just been itching to get out in the sunshine and move around in an area that is a bit wider than 8'x8'.

This spring, I'm all about getting serious about my running. A couple years ago, before I moved to Milwaukee, I was training for a half marathon. Well, with the move, the excitement of a new city and a new job and new friends, my running went off track, so to speak, and it never really got back on. But I'm determined by the end of the summer to be hitting double-digits in my running outings. Gotta get to 10 miles in one run by September. I think this is a fairly attainable goal, seeing as though today I am shooting for about 6 miles.

To help me with the training, I recently purchased the Garmin Forerunner 305.This little gadget gets sparkling reviews across the board, and I ended up getting an amazing deal on one on Amazon, for just over 50% the original price. I've taken it out on a couple runs and can I just say... I am in love.

This is all the training partner you need. I love tracking exactly how many miles I've run while I'm running them. I track heart rate and calorie burn, and I love that it tells me what pace I'm on, in case I feel like kicking that pace's ass. It pushes me to run farther than I normally would without it, and it also pushes me to run faster (which rules, because I'm focusing on improving both my endurance AND my speed this summer). 

With the help of this little baby, I clocked my first trial 5k run at 25:40 and it gave me my "base pace" that I am going to work on beating every run from here on out. I'm running the Klement's Sausage 5k race at the end of July, and I'm shooting to finish in 23:30. I fully believe that training using my Garmin is going to get me there.

No matter what level of runner you are, I definitely recommend investing in a Garmin. I can't say enough good things about it. It's not the cutest-looking thing you'll ever attach to your wrist, but tracking your training process is fun, and it's really the best way to improve. As soon as I get home from any run, I immediately plug this in to see my stats all on one page. I study my split times and pinpoint exactly where I need to push a little harder. I have no doubt it'll get me to my 5k goal time and to a half marathon in no time :)



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