Friday, December 4, 2015

CrossFit WOD You Can Do At Home

I couldn't make it to CrossFit yesterday so I decided to do Tuesday's gym workout at home as well as add one I saw on Pinterest.

The first one was 21-18-15-12-9-6-3 Kettlebell (or dumbbell) swings, butterfly sit-ups and single under jump ropes (advanced version is double-unders - jumping high and getting the jump rope under your feet twice before landing. 

So the first round was 21 dumbbell swings (I used 15 lb), 21 sit ups and 63 jump ropes (21x3). Then 18, 15, and so on. It took me about 14 minutes.

Next, I did 4 rounds of:

8 Weighted Goblet Squats (with one 15 lb weight)
8 Bent Over Rows (30 lbs)
8 Squat/Deadlift (30 lbs)
8 Overhead Press (30 lbs)

Needless to say I am pretty sore today plus on Wednesday night, I did 75 burpees and fifty 85 lb. deadlifts at the box.


Have a good weekend!

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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

It's Been A While

Hi everyone. It has been a while since my last post. The last 5 weeks have been pretty terrible. Not to exaggerate or worry anyone but probably the worst weeks of my life.

I woke up on 10/25 and I knew something wasn't right. We had spent the night at my cousin's (an hour away from home) and I woke up feeling weird. Anxious. Quieter than normal (which is almost mute because I'm pretty quiet to begin with). Driving home with Saro, I just knew something wasn't right. We went to Trader Joe's and did our Sunday thing anyway. I tried to ignore it.

The next day, I felt even worse. I barely made it through the work day. By the evening (after my annual gyno checkup, ugh), I had to take something to calm myself down. It was like an out of control/out of body experience and I felt petrified. I stayed home on Tuesday.

Since then, I've seen just about every type of doctor under the sun and it has pretty much been narrowed down to anxiety and depression.

I think today is probably the best I've felt in almost 40 days.

I've really had to PUSH myself every morning to get going and get to work. Literally force myself even if tears were streaming down my face on the way out the door.

Somehow I've continued to workout although I didn't go to CrossFit for 3 weeks. I started going again last week and was glad I did. I plan to go tomorrow and Thursday as well.

I do not know the reason for it, I can't pinpoint it. I'm working with a doctor to try to get to the bottom of it but nothing tragic happened or anything like that. 

I now truly understand the severity of mental health problems and I really feel for those who have to go through this and sometimes, even worse. It is absolutely horrible and I wouldn't with it upon anyone.

It's definitely not easy to talk about but that's just it, it NEEDS to be talked about so that people suffering from it can feel more comfortable talking about it and seeking help. 

In my case, I knew deep down what it was (even though I've never experienced it) and I got help right away. I've been doing anything to try to remain calm (the anxiety is bad enough but worsens the more I think about it) - exercise, acupuncture, massages, even a meditation app on my phone!

If you've experienced anything like this, please know there is help out there. Don't be afraid to talk about it!

Here's to hoping that each day gets a little bit easier/better.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

CrossFit: The Chief

So, I've learned that a lot of CrossFit workouts have names. Today was "The Chief."

3 minute AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

3 power cleans (I did 55 lbs - recommended is 95 for women)
6 push-ups (I'm getting much better but I did mine on an 18" box today)
9 air squats

Repeat 4 more times.

I did between 2 and 3 rounds for each 3 minutes.

It was HARSH. My total score was 223.

I really like CrossFit a lot so far! I've been going at 6:00am before work. Next week, I may shoot for 5:30pm. I'm feeling a bit "off" this week and I'm not sure if I am just tired or what. I'm definitely looking forward to resting tomorrow.

Check out this video to see the workout.



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Friday, September 25, 2015

Recent Workouts

One WOD from this week:

Strength warm up:
15 minutes to a heavy (not max) deadlift x 5 without dropping bar.
I'm still working on technique so I only did 35 lbs.

WOD:
5 rounds for time:

5 power snatches (supposed to be 95 lbs but I only used the bar, 15 lbs)
10 box jumps (I scaled with step ups @ 18 inches)
200 meter (1/8 mile) run

My time was 11:38.

My coordination with the bar is still terrible right now and I'm extremely sore! I'm still getting used to it, going in the morning before work, etc.

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I have a half day today so this afternoon is KAREN - 150 wall balls for time with a 14 lb. ball! Kill me now!

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Last night I ran 4 miles in 43:15. I was definitely hurting from this weeks CF workouts but it was a good run with perfect weather!


Have a great weekend!


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Wednesday, September 16, 2015

CrossFit WOD

Last night's WOD:

Warm-Up:
200 meter run
7 push ups (I did modified)
10 kips.This was pretty much impossible for me. 

Repeat x2

10 double air squats
walking lunges across the room

WOD:
400 meter run (1/4 mile)
(I couldn't get this move down. I did a push press instead and only with 25 lbs.)
30 toes to bar or 45 knees to elbows (still extremely difficult)
800 meter run (1/2 mile)
30 TTB or 45 KTE
15 push jerks
400 meter run

My time (not including warm up) was 17:54.

My coordination is pretty terrible but I still got a great workout!


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Thursday, September 3, 2015

CrossFit


Saro and I tried CrossFit last weekend and decided to join as a supplement to the 21 Day Fix Extreme, PiYo and running. I plan on going 2x a week. My sister-in-law has been going for a year and looks amazing.

They had an awesome Groupon deal plus 15% off of that and $10 back each from eBates ;) It was basically buy 1 month, get two months free plus 5 one on one sessions.

It's definitely a little intimidating but most new things are, I guess.

Our first work out was as a 2 person team. They start you off "easy" and you progress from there.

Between the two of us, we had to do 54 burpees (and not the ones I'm used to - you have to go all the way to floor so it's basically a burpee AND a push up), 54 butterfly sit ups (legs spread butterfly, lay down and touch the floor over your head, sit up and touch the floor passed your toes), 54 kettle bell swings (I used 18 lb, Saro used 35) - so 27 each (sounds easier than it is!) and then an 800 meter (1/2 mile) run. Phew! I was SO SORE for 3 days. It's crazy because I'm familiar with most of these moves, this is just on a more hardcore level.

We finished in about 15.5 minutes.

We have to go through Foundations to learn the proper moves and form. We did two classes this week.


Tuesday's workout was:

500 meter row on row machine
40 air squats
30 sit ups
20 ring rows (easier form of pull ups)

Wednesday's workout was:

500 meter row on row machine 
21/15/9 (3 rounds of each exercise - 1st 21 times, 2nd 15 times and 3rd 9 times)
Dead lifts (I did 35 lbs Saro 85) and then hanging from a bar, bring your knees as close to your elbows as possible without swinging too much.

It's definitely really challenging! 
Have you ever tried CrossFit?!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

National Dog Day: Murphy

Happy National Dog Day to all the pups out there, especially ours - Murphy!



Some fun facts about Murphy:

He will be 4 in November. 

He's part German Shepherd, part Carolina dog.

We adopted him from North Carolina.

We didn't meet him before we adopted him.

He weighs 88 lbs.



He sleeps on his bed next to Saro's side of the bed and I cover him with a blanket each night - LOL.

We live on a corner lot and he loves to bark his head off at anyone and everyone who walks by. He's all bark.


He hatesss Dave. Dave is the very nice mailman who always leaves Murphy treats!

He loves getting a bath.



When he has to go "potty" he starts howling and will bring either Saro or I a toy and pace back and forth.

The only people he likes to jumps on are my mom and Saro's mom.

He's not allowed on furniture or our bed and doesn't attempt to jump on either one.

He loves the snow, belly rubs, chicken, being outside, chasing the cat, & Milk Bone treats.

We love you, Murphs! You're the best boy!




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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Lauren

I met my friend Lauren about 9 years ago on Weight Watchers online. I would go on the site and chat with other members about WW related things but more often than not, it would lead to other topics.

A bunch of us from NJ and NY met in person in the summer of 2007. It was one of the funniest days of my life. It didn't feel weird to meet people "from the internet." 

Saro & I went to her wedding & she came to ours last year.

Sadly, Lauren passed away two days ago after a two year, courageous battle with brain cancer. She was only 39 and has a young daughter and wonderful husband. My heart breaks for her family. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers this week.

It's raining so hard today probably because you're making everyone laugh so hard up there. Lauren, thank you for making me laugh until I cried and for being brutally honest. I love you and I will miss you forever. Until we meet again...








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Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tips & Reasons For Morning Workouts

Hey everyone! This morning as I was getting ready for work after my workout, I was thinking of some tips to share for getting up early! I don't wake up early every day but I'd say about 3x a week. In order to get my workout in before work, I have to wake up 1 hour earlier than normal which really isn't terrible. I can typically sleep until 7:15 at the very latest. This morning I got up at 6.

Here are my tips & reasons for working out in the morning:

1.) Go to bed 30 minutes early. If you usually fall asleep around 11, go to bed at 10. Put your phone down and maybe read for a bit. (Last night I was snoozing by 10:15)

2.) Keep your phone away from your nightstand and out of arms reach. This will force you to get up when the alarm goes off!

3.) Drink a glass of water before working out. 8 oz. is good. I find that if I drink too much, I become nauseous (especially if I'm doing PLYO!)

4.) You'll feel more awake and refreshed when heading out the door for work.

5.) You're done for the day! When you get home from work, you'll have more time to cook dinner and spend time with family - 4-5 whole hours!

6.) Don't eat a big meal and then workout right away. If you have to eat before or feel really hungry, maybe have half of a banana or an egg. I eat afterwards. 
*This is different if you're heading out for a long run or something. You would need to eat to keep your energy up.

Do you workout in the morning or at night?

Have a great day!

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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Our Pergola: Before + After

When we first moved into our house nearly 5 years ago, the pergola was in iffy shape. We weren't sure what to do with it because it's not attached to the house so it was kind of an awkward spot for it. Our property is a corner lot and the yard is big & L-shaped. The pergola/deck sits towards the back of the yard. It once had a pool attached to it but the previous owners removed the pool and planted a tree where the pool was.

 We fixed up the landscaping around it, added mulch, some flowers, etc. This year we decided to spruce it up some more with Behr's deck over paint. I can't say I helped all that much. Saro & my stepdaughter painted it for a few days while I was at work.

Saro added some lights, a fan and bamboo (thanks to our friends who were going to chop theirs down and get rid of it!). The fan really helps with the heat and bugs!

Before:

Spring 2011 right after we moved in


Getting there. See the open area and the tree on the left? That's where the pool and ladder for pool was.


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After!

Saro closed in that open area about 3 years ago and you can't even tell it was ever open. We replaced the tree with a bird bath but then one of the plants we planted started to grow around the bath lol.


I love the look of the bamboo!


Saro also added beams going the opposite way to the top of the pergola.


Murphy loves it, too!



We definitely recommend the Behr Deck Over paint. It's not cheap! It's about $40/gallon and we went through 8 gallons. But, what a difference it made!



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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Tarte Friends & Family

I've been using Bare Minerals for years but last week, I decided to order a few things from Tarte to try it out. It figures today through 8/3 is their friends and family sale - 30% off!

The sale includes sale items and I think I'm going to buy the 2 pack mascara for $20.30 (after the 30% off). 1 is normally $21 so that's a great deal!

Don't forget to click through eBates to get an additional 4% back!

What's your favorite brand of makeup?


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Friday, July 24, 2015

Positive Thoughts

Hi all!

It's been a minute since my last post.

For no specific reason, I'm trying to stay positive and think happy thoughts. A few things are going on that are a bit stressful and disheartening. I'm trying to just BREATHE and stop to enjoy each day, even if that means sitting down and reflecting for 10 minutes.

Lately, I've been finding peace in being outside whether it's our yard, the park - doesn't matter.

Think positive and smile! Looking & feeling exhausted in this picture. I forced myself to get up early to workout knowing that I won't have time tonight. Felt great after!

Have a great weekend!





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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

One Year of PiYo!

One year ago, I started Beachbody's PiYo. I did it for about 8 months straight, 4-5 days per week. I continue to do it with the 21 Day Fix Extreme workouts. With the two programs and running, combined with the fact that I haven't been on the pill since November and my thyroid is more regulated, I'm currently down 15 lbs. & 2 pant/dress sizes since September 2014.

I feel really good! I don't want to lose more weight at this point. I'd like to maintain and build some muscle.

I definitely recommend PiYo and 21 Day Fix Extreme. They're my favorite Beachbody programs! I plan to do another strict round of the 21 DFE when we don't have something going on every weekend, lol. I'm thinking July 20-Aug 7.

My cousin let me borrow the original 21 Day Fix which I really like so far, too! We're off to Lake George this weekend so I'll definitely utilize Beachbody On Demand in the hotel again!

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Thursday, June 11, 2015

My Stepdaughter's Graduation

To say I'm exhausted would be an understatement, but it was well worth it!

Yesterday after work, Saro and I took the 5 hour round trip to see my stepdaughter graduate from high school. There were 254 kids graduating. To me that seems like a lot! I think I graduated with 130 (13 years ago! #TBT). 

Also, they had TEN valedictorians! They're off to Princeton, Rensselear, Penn State, etc. 

The ceremony was really nice and we are so glad we went. She was really happy too! 




We are so proud of her! She has worked really hard and maintained good grades.

Within the next few weeks, she will be moving to NJ and living with us. She will be attending community college with her sister.


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Monday, June 8, 2015

The Best Weekend Ever

The past few weekends have been pretty great but this one takes the cake! Me with 4 of my best friends away for the weekend? What could be better? Plus, I think life is just better in general when the weather is good. The last few winters have really got me down in the dumps. It never used to bother me. Is this a sign of getting old? Lol Oof.

Anyway, on Thursday night, 3 friends and I drove to the Berkshires in MA. Our other friend couldn't get Friday off from work so she met us there late Friday night.

It's about 170 miles northeast of here.

We were about 3 miles from the house when we saw what appeared to be either a dead or injured moose on the side of the road! There was a car pulled over on the other side of the road and a girl standing outside of the car. Thankfully, no one appeared to be hurt but we aren't sure if the moose was dead or alive :( It was HUGE and dark brown/black in color.

We arrived around 9 on Thursday, grilled some burgers, had some drinks, talked and laughed. It was one of my friend's birthdays so we had shortcakes with berries and cream for dessert!

Friday morning after breakfast and coffee, we decided to check out a local winery. It was the perfect day for it and we were pretty much the only people there. We sampled a bunch of wines and then had a glass and sat outside. The weather was perfect. It was also national donut day so how could we resist? The winery had homemade donuts so of course we got them too and they were delicious.



From there, we went out to lunch at a brewery. I had a yummy baked cod sandwich with onion rings. To die for.



We got back to the house around 4:00 and took the kayak and canoe out on the little lake which is the backyard of the house. The house was perfect for the 5 of us. It was 3 bedrooms, 2 full bath, kitchen, dining room, living room, outdoor deck, grill, etc.



Saturday, we just hung around the house and enjoyed the peace and quiet, took the kayak out again, had lunch and talked and laughed some more.




Ang & I had to head home Saturday night because we both had things planned for Sunday. I definitely wanted to stay for a couple more days! It was really nice to get away with my friends. We talk often and see each other quite often but it's rare to be able to spend a couple days together to really catch up. I'm thankful to call them my friends for the last two+ decades!

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When I got home, Saro had dinner made and it was really yummy - grilled split chicken breast with whole wheat pasta with veggies in a roasted red pepper eggplant sauce. I'm looking forward to that for lunch today!

We went to bed early because we had the GWB 10k yesterday at 7:30 AM. We ran it with my cousin and sister-in-law. We all did really great! My time was 1:02:42 (PR!!). Saro's was 58:30 which is really awesome to run that in under an hour!

Last year vs. this year.






I'm feeling a little sore today but mostly just tired.

I hope you all had a great weekend!


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Wednesday, June 3, 2015

National Running Day!


Happy National Running Day! 


I run because...


~ It's a great workout

~ It's therapeutic. Just me, the road and some music

~ I get that workout high afterwards

~ Sometimes it's more mental strength than physical

~ I love the outdoors

~ I can

~ I love that post workout high



Any plans to get some miles in today?

I'm aiming for 4 tonight @ running club.



Monday, June 1, 2015

Jersey Fest

On Saturday, we went to Jersey Fest at the Meadowlands. Basically it was a bunch of different food & beer trucks from the NJ/PA area. It was really fun, just super crowded! We only got to try out two food trucks - Luke's Lobster rolls and Callahan's hot dogs. Both were really good! 

It was nice to unwind after spending 12 hours in the yard over the weekend!


I'd go again except I'd pay the extra $20 to get early admission and avoid the insane lines!


Have a good week!



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Friday, May 29, 2015

Corporate Fun Run

Last night after work, some of my coworkers and I headed over to the Meadowlands Racetrack for a corporate fun run. Our company had abour 30 people.

I wasn't going to run but my one coworker said she was so I decided to. 



I finished in around 32 minutes. It was really hot last night - close to 90 but thankfully there was a breeze.

Have a great weekend! 
Ours will be spent spreading dirt and mulch in the yard - HOORAY!


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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

10K PR!

I love that feeling when you think it's Monday but keep having to remind yourself it's Tuesday already!

Yesterday, Saro and I ran a local 10K with our running club. My official time was 1:06:58 and Saro's was 1:01:52. I ran it 7 minutes quicker than my last 10K which I'm happy about! We have another 10K next weekend.

The course was great. Residential and flat. So many people were out on the sidewalks cheering us on, playing music and some even spraying us with their hoses which felt great! It wasn't super hot but pretty humid.

It was fun to be part of a team this time around. We hung out with them to cheer on the 5k runners. We also watched a local fireman break the world record for running the fastest mile in his full gear. He ran it in 6 minutes, 45 seconds! It was really cool to witness that.

Despite having some inurjuries the last couple years and not even wanting to run some days, I can say that I really LOVE running and everything about it. A runner with arm crutches and another with a cane, ran the 5K yesterday. People of all ages participated. Some kids were probably 6 or 7 and others in their 70s.

I think it was my favorite race so far! I really like 10K distance.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Running Club: 4 Miles

Last night, we went to a local park with the running club. I had never been to this one before so it was a nice change. We ran 5 laps around the pond which was exactly 4 miles. To my surprise, I ran it in 39:13! I'm aiming for a 10 min mile or better for both of my 10Ks coming up so I was happy about that.

The coach advised us to run the first half of each lap at "race pace" or a little quicker and then the last half of each lap a little slower (if we wanted to).

So far, I'm really enjoying it. I look forward to it each Wednesday. It's something Saro and I can do together and meet some new people.

They seem to do a lot of fun races together. Last year, they did a race in Long Island and then spent the day at Jones Beach. Sounds fun!

I'm really looking forward to the 10K on Memorial Day. It's in the next town over from us, about 2 miles away which is convenient. It might make the most sense to walk there, lol.

Happy Friday Eve before a long weekend!


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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Shoebuy Deal

Morning, everyone!

Just wanted to share this awesome deal from Shoebuy.com. It's been about a year since I purchased new running sneakers so I figured it was time for a new pair. I still plan on wearing my old pair for cross training as they're still decent.

While I like to support small businesses in town or nearby, $120 is a lot of money. I found the same shoes on Shoebuy for 10% cheaper plus this awesome promotion code for 30% off and free shipping! PROMO CODE - TWITTERFRIEND2015.

So, I ended up spending $75 and will get about $5 back from eBates!

Have a good one!


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Ebates Sweet Sixteen


Shopping for anything online this week? Be sure to shop through Ebates to get 16% cash back at 150+ stores! If the online store has a current promo code, even better! A favorite of mine, Toms shoes. 16% cash back plus $5 off $25 or more with code SPRING15.

I've received $759 cash back over the last few years! It's definitely worth signing up for free.

Tip: Call me cheap but when shopping online, I always Google promotion codes for the store before checking out. You'd be surprised at what you can find!


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Monday, May 11, 2015

'Round The Country Vacation Recap

Serious case of the Monday blues, folks. But I wanted to recap our vacation! It's a long one so get comfy.



On April 30th, we were off to Des Moines, Iowa for our friends wedding. We had a 3 hour layover in Minneapolis first which was spent having dinner and a couple drinks. From Des Moines, we drove the 45 minutes to Ames which is where the festivities were. Our friends are big into brewing their own beer and just beer in general. We went out for a bit with them before heading to the hotel around midnight.





The next day was the wedding but we had some time to kill before that so we ate at an awesome place called The Cafe in Ames. After that we took a little nap and then got ready for the wedding. It was at a winery and unfortunately it rained right before the ceremony, so it was held inside but then it cleared up a bit so they had pictures outside which was nice. Weddings in the midwest are very different than here! Much more relaxed and casual. We had fun sampling the couples home brewed beer!




On Saturday, we met up with the bride and a couple friends for lunch before heading to the airport.

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We arrived in Seattle Saturday night pretty late but we were hungry. The hotel recommended a place called Ten Mercer which was two blocks from the hotel. We had a drink and some awesome half price appetizers!


Sunday morning, my aunt and uncle picked us up and we went to Magnolia Park where you get a great view of Seattle, the Fremont Sunday Market and famous bridge troll, followed by the Ballard locks, Shilshole beach and dinner in Capitol Hill at Terra Plata.



Saro @ the top.




Monday, our anniversary, Saro and I went to the top of the Space Needle, Olympic Sculpture park, Pike Place Market, the gum wall and then took the bus over to Issaquah for dinner at my aunt and uncles. We grilled some awesome burgers and enjoyed with potato salad and tomato mozzarella salad.







Gorgeous moutain views from Olympic Sculpture Park!




The gum wall. Yuck.



Tuesday, we took the ferry boat over to Bainbridge Island. Fun Fact: Dr. Derek Shepherd is supposed to live on Bainbridge in Grey's Anatomy.



It was a bit rainy but nice nonetheless. We had lunch (see a pattern here? lots of eating last week!) followed by gelato and stopping in a few shops. We met my uncle downtown near the market around 5:00. He works nearby so it worked out. We had dinner at Etta's and then I ugly cried when I had to say goodbye to my aunt. Happens every. time. 

The original Starbucks @ Pike Place Market

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Wednesday, we flew to San Francisco from Seattle, rented a car and drove 220 miles south to Morro Bay, CA which is where my grandma lives. She lives a block from the beach but beaches are very different on the west coast. It never gets hot in MB and you need a wet suit if you so choose to go swimming. Brrr.



5 miles from my Grandma's coming up and over the mountain in Cayucos, CA.

We arrived around 7:30pm where she had beef chili and sourdough garlic bread waiting for us. It was perfect! I hadn't seen my grandma in 5 years so it was really nice to see her and catch up. She always makes me laugh. 



The Morro Bay rock



Thursday, I took Saro to San Luis Obispo which is 10 miles inland from where my grandma lives. It's a town of about 50,000. It has great restaurants and shops. We had breakfast at a great spot called Louisa's Place followed by a latte at Scout coffee.



I can't believe I didn't gain any weight after this trip!!! SO much good food, drinks and treats. We did manage to get 5 Beachbody On Demand workouts in plus one run and a bunch of walking.

Thursday night we ordered Mexican from a great place I remember as a kid, Lolo's. My grandma had some sparkling pinot grigio for us and her friend came over. We talked and laughed some more.

Friday before heading back to SF, we stopped at her house for breakfast and said goodbye. 

We decided to take highway 1 up the coast back to the city. It definitely adds on an extra 2 hours or so but the views are SO worth it. If you've never done it or are looking for somewhere to visit, I definitely recommend Northern California and doing the coast drive. one way. Specifically San Francisco, San Luis Obispo and Morro Bay.










We drove by the Painted Ladies and the house from Mrs. Doubtfire. They're located on the same street in a beautiful neighborhood of San Francisco.





We checked into our hotel, walked over to The Top of the Mark which is a restaurant at the top of the Intercontinental Hotel and has magnificent views of the city.



From there, we walked over to The Stinking Rose and met my uncle and cousin for dinner. Garlic, garlic and more garlic. Stinky but yummy! I had the short ribs.

Saturday morning we woke up early to meet more family for breakfast at The Hollywood Cafe near Fisherman's Wharf. From there, we headed to the airport and that pretty much concludes our trip.

Phew!

It was really fun and we covered a ton of ground in a little over a week.



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