Tag Archives: fitness

20 Weeks! Halfway There!

Twenty weeks is a wonderful milestone in pregnancy so I thought I’d post an update!

I honestly can’t believe I’m already halfway there. I don’t even know where the time went. Half of the time I didn’t even feel pregnant. If it weren’t for my belly growing, prenatal appointments, and my little snowpea rolling all over the place in my tummy, it wouldn’t sink in me that there’s really a growing human being inside me. Oh, I love those little kicks. It’s such a lovely feeling. 🙂

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How far along? 20 weeks!!!

Gender? Boy! 🙂

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Baby BOY on “board”

Stretch marks? none (yet)

Belly Button? still in. 🙂

Maternity clothes? My normal clothes are already feeling too tight around the boobs and tummy. I splurged mostly on maternity workout clothes since I figured it will be the clothes that I’ll be wearing for the most part of my pregnancy. I got them from this online company called For Two Fitness. 

PicMonkey Collage                                          20 weeks                                                                                     15 weeks

I love them that I wear them even when I’m just lounging around at home or going out in the mall. They’re so soft and comfy.

I also got a pair of maternity jeans – AG jeans from Destination Maternity.

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Oh boy, these jeans are wonderful! It felt soooo right! I was actually insisting on buying maternity clothes but when I bought these, I began to understand the logic behind maternity clothes – how they were made to accommodate the ever-changing growth happening around the belly area. It was instant relief from the discomfort I’d feel as I continued to force myself into regular pants.

It’s nice to have a pair of maternity jeans but when they’re in the laundry I use these gems!

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I got these extenders and belly band from Amazon and they work wonders. They allow me to continue wearing my normal non-maternity pants. They’re a real blessing!

It’s still around 20 degrees here! :/ I can’t wait for spring so I can wear some of my looser dresses for casual day time.

Sleep? My full sized pregnancy pillow is a life saver! It’s shaped like a big squidgy letter “C” that I can hug when I’m sleeping on my side. It’s an awesome pillow and very beneficial for my  body to support the growing bump.

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Food Cravings? Lately, I have been craving for milk chocolate candies and chocolate cookies! And because it’s still cold, I crave for ramen and pho noodle soup too! 🙂

Miss anything? Red wine!!! …But upon seeing posts about Shirley Temple’s death, I remembered this non-alcoholic drink made with lemon-lime soda and grenadine. I searched for the recipe online and made it. The best non-alcoholic beverage ever!

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Anyone tried this drink?

What I’m looking forward to? Getting a proper looking bump so I’d look really pregnant instead of just a bloated looking tummy. 🙂 LOL!

What I wish people knew? Hmm… this is going to be a long one.

When I had friends who got pregnant before me, I remember how I used to comfort them (though I couldn’t relate to them at that time yet) when they opened up their feelings of how they got affected towards comments of some people. People may think their comments may seem like a compliment or showing care but some can really make pregnant women paranoid and worried.

I now know and feel what my friends felt. I, myself, pregnant, am experiencing a lot of those weird statements and I get so affected easily. It seems as if society has this way of discouraging women, scaring us with horror stories instead of encouraging us welcome, embrace, and look at pregnancy, birth, and having a newborn, more positively. For some, to be a first, second, third time mom already brings more than enough concerns on its own. I just wish they don’t put more to that anymore.

I’m going to share a couple of statements I got so far from my 20 weeks of being pregnant. I know I’ll get more ’til the end of my term, and up to how I raise my kids. People will always have something to say. It will never end. There are certain comments that we’ll never get used to even if we have learned to laugh them off. But I’m glad I am now learning to put my emotions aside and shrug these things off. As I knew whom to and not to believe, whom to take seriously, from those who deserve attention and consideration. And if there’s one thing I picked up from talking to my mom friends from all walks of life, is: every pregnancy, every woman, every child is different …TRUE!

STATEMENT 1: “You’re blooming, you’re going to have a baby girl. You become ugly if it’s a boy.” (Yikes!)

Me: Uhm, thanks! But, I’m having a boy. I hope you still think I’m blooming. LOL!

Of course, I appreciate these remarks. Compliments never felt this good! But basing the gender on how you look during pregnancy? I say, don’t believe in this. Our looks change because of the way our hormones affect us, as well as our diet. Whatever physical changes you go through are caused by the way you carry the baby and not because of its gender. I have a lot of friends who carried baby boys and were very gorgeous throughout their pregnancy. It’s common for pregnant women to get the unwanted fat and dark lines and these things will go away after the term. They’re not only specific for moms carrying baby boys. The other thing is, I learned to put extra effort to my looks ever since I found out I was pregnant. The bump can be pretty awkward sometimes so I really take time to fix myself and pick clothes that will make it look better. I make sure to put some effort into things that will help me feel good about my pregnant self. 🙂

STATEMENT 2: “What?! You’re still running?”
“You should take a break, it’s 
dangerous for the baby.”

I get bombarded with these comments when I post pictures of me running while pregnant on Instagram. Apparently some of the people over there become experts and perfect. That comment to me sounded like I am the worst mom-to-be in the world. I just want to say that I am NOT going to do anything that will harm my baby. According to what I learned in my years in Medical School, exercise is incredibly beneficial to the health of pregnant women and baby. If you ran/exercised regularly BEFORE getting pregnant, it’s fine to continue – as long as you take some precautions and FIRST CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR. It is recommended to eat healthy and exercise during pregnancy BUT, it’s NOT the time to try a new fitness routine.  I have a “go” signal from my OB and from my husband who’s also a medical doctor. I have all the medical guidance I can get, so it’s OKAY! 🙂 For me, exercise not only helped me a lot with my nausea during my first trimester, but it kept me sane, with energy and no aches and pains.

STATEMENT 3: “Enjoy (insert activity) while you still can.”
You will never again have time to (insert activity) once the baby comes. In fact, you’ll never have time to do ANYTHING. You’ll simply be a shell of your former self.” 

Haha. 🙂 Yup I get this …A LOT! 🙂

I happen to know plenty of awesome parents who still watch movies, play sports, and enjoy dinners at restaurants. I know many working moms with successful careers and happy children. So I’m not buying this whole idea that life suddenly ends when you have a baby. Sure, life changes a lot!  Maybe my new exercise routine will be pushing my babies around the neighborhood in their jogging stroller (which I am very much looking forward to! :)) My night outs with my husband will have to be planned instead of spontaneous. But neither of us would have it any other way. We know that we’ll just have to adjust everything accordingly. 🙂

There’s more but I’ll end it here. I think I said more than enough. 🙂 Really, there’s more I can think of that people and social media can do to paint a horrible picture of pregnancy, birth and motherhood in general. I am in favor of good and enjoyable pregnancy (and delivery, and motherhood) and that starts with the act of choosing to listen to the better, positive, more encouraging, realistic side of things. I think that’s what really is helping me more now to focus on the blessing of having such a wonderful miracle. On the one hand, it is reading stories and talking to my wonderful mom friends that boost faith and courage, and be inspired by them. Pregnancy does not necessarily have to be restricting and burdensome. God designed it to be 40 weeks so we can muster enough knowledge, courage, and faith to bring about the wonders and challenges of a new life.  I still have a halfway to go and I pray for even more vibrant pregnancy.

How about you, pregnant or planning to be, have you ever encountered these statements? What do you wish people knew?  

Thanks for listening to my rants, confessions and hormonal monologues. LOL! :) 

To end this post, I’d like to share our baby website here

(http://Ja-and-Leo.ourbabychannel.com/). 


Feel free to sign our guestbook as you check in! 🙂

Have a great week!XoXo,
Ja
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Ja on the RUN is…

PREGNANT!

If you follow me on my Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter account, you probably know by now. So, yes, I am pregnant. :)

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I am currently in my second trimester, 15 weeks to be exact.

My husband and I learned that I was pregnant last October 2013. It was the day before my birthday. I did a home pregnancy test after a few days of missing my period. My monthly period is super regular and right on the dot, as well as my Ovulation Calendar app which had been always correct with it’s predictions. My husband and I had been trying for quite some time to get pregnant and that app was really a great help. I realized then that it isn’t that easy to make a baby. It really is in His own perfect time. 🙂 Anyway, test came out positive! I was shocked and couldn’t believe it. I mean isn’t it is always a wonder, a puzzle, a mystery, how we can carry miracles inside our bodies!? What a privilege! That was definitely an awesome birthday surprise for me. As much as we wanted to share the news to the world right away, we decided to delay our announcement to some loved ones and family members because we wanted to surprise my side of family about my pregnancy on Christmas Eve.

It was at my second appointment, 11 weeks, when we finally heard the baby’s heartbeat and had my first ultrasound done. We had the photo of the sonogram scanned and printed out copies for each of my family members. We used them as name cards for our gifts. We wrote at the back of the photo – “To My Grandmother” for my aunts, “To My Grandfather” for my uncles, “Uncles”, and “Aunts” for my cousins and, so on. When we gave out our gifts, they were all looking around confused. One of my aunts said, ‘’I am not a grandma yet!” Then she flipped the card and saw the ultrasound pic. They all finally figured out! They were all blown away! 🙂 It was hard trying to hold and keep it a secret but it was all worth it. My family was soooo ecstatic when they learned the good news. I’m the eldest among my siblings and my parents are so excited to meet their first ever grandchild. 🙂

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During my first trimester, I didn’t have much except for fatigue, extra sensitivity around the breast area, and increased appetite. 🙂 I craved (still craving) for sour foods like pineapple, pickles and green mangoes. Mmmmm.

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I had nausea here and there too but Altoids Ginger mints helped me a lot to alleviate that symptom.

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I keep this planner handy in case I need to jot down notes and memories. 🙂

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I just also became a For Two Fitness ambassador which I am soo excited to share! I ordered cute workout tops and bottoms from their website which I haven’t tried wearing because I am not showing enough bump yet. 🙂 I can’t wait to wear and workout in them soon! Yes! Pictures will be posted of course! 🙂 I am actually so thankful that I got pregnant in this modern age that stuff like these are already available for active pregnant women. It makes pregnancy soooo much easier and enjoyable. 🙂

Thank you For Two Fitness® Maternity Apparel!

As for the running department: I know medically that it’s ok to continue to exercise during pregnancy. And I assured that from my OB after reviewing my lab results and tests. I had a “go” signal from my OB that I can still run and continue doing the workouts I have been doing for the whole course of my pregnancy. YAY! So, it’s ok as long as I was comfortable and well-hydrated. I just had to pass on snowboarding this season (sigh). Activities with risks of falling are to be avoided.

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L-R: 7 weeks pregnant, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 9 weeks. 🙂

There was a point during my first trimester that I got a little frustrated of myself. My energy has dropped down to half from what it used to be since I got pregnant (though people say this usually only lasts until the first trimester is over). My running pace was slower and I get tired easily. I’ve also already put on some fat where they’ve never been before, and it isn’t very comforting when you see them ruin what used to be such no-brainer outfits for me. I had to wear looser workout tops to be comfortable. I honestly miss my old multi-tasking self.  But then, I had to remind myself that I’m pregnant and that everything I am going through is ok. Pregnancy is a blessing and I embrace these changes for I know that I am literally at the conception of a brand new and super promising chapter of my life.

I have a long way to go! Imagine this to be a total of 40 weeks. I am already over my first trimester. Time flies by so fast. As of now, I am doing really great, just exceptionally hungry at odd hours at night. I go to bed really early these days and sleep like a grandma. Haha! I noticed too that my energy has gone up a bit, though when I went to cardio kickboxing class last night I had some limitations doing some of the workouts. It’s ok. I’m ok. I welcome those changes joyfully! It’s all for a good reason. 🙂

I am also happy that our baby made him/herself way out during the healthiest time of my life. One of the reasons I started my health journey was to prepare my body for pregnancy and motherhood. I believe that taking care of myself will make me a better mom and wife to my family. 🙂

I pray for my safe and easy pregnancy, as well as safe, easy, normal delivery. Our estimated due date is June 29, 2014! 🙂

So, since your blogger is pregnant and especially now that I have gained my energy back, do expect months worth of pregnancy-related posts. 🙂

ja on the run

God bless you all! 🙂

– Ja

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Coast-to-Coast Trip Part 4: Jackson Hole, WY

Hi everyone! How’s September treating you? For me, I am loving it! I love running in cooler weather!

I’m excited for this next recap. This is my most favorite part of our trip!

Our next stop…

Orlando, FL  {recap here}
Los Angeles, CA {recap here}
Boulder & Las Vegas, NV (& a little bit of Arizona :P ) {recap here
> Jackson Hole, WY —> BREATHTAKING!!!
Seattle, WA
Spokane, WA
Vancouver, BC (Canada)

Jackson Hole, WY

WARNING: Words like …AMAZING, …BREATHTAKING, …BEAUTIFUL, …GORGEOUS will be used a lot in this post! 🙂 I can’t even begin to put into words how BEAUTIFUL this place was.

We included Jackson Hole to our Coast-to-Coast trip ’cause my mom was going to be there with her friends for a vacation. When she told me about that, my husband and I decided to take a trip to Jackson Hole too and meet my mom there. 🙂

So, after LA, we flew in to Jackson Hole! 🙂 Unfortunately, our flight was delayed. Our supposedly brief layover in Salt Lake City became an overnight stay. Our flight the next day to Jackson Hole was at noon so, there went our day for the supposed Yellowstone National Park tour. Delayed flight sucks! 😦 What could we do? 😦

Salt Lake City to Jackson Hole is about a 45-minute flight. I recommend a seat by the window so you can look out and see those fabulous Tetons when you land <– AMAZING! We flew in on just a small airplane (puddle jumper). When we exited the plane, there was no jet bridge. Instead we took the stairs to the airport entrance. The moment we stepped out of the airplane, we immediately smelled  the crisp mountain air of Jackson Hole along with the beautiful scenery of the Tetons around you. I loved it!!!)

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After getting our luggage, we took one of the shuttle buses to the rental car place (we rented a car from Alamo) which was in the city proper, about 15 minutes away from the airport.

After picking up our rental car, we headed to our hotel and checked-in. We stayed at Wyoming Inn and it was a GORGEOUS hotel. Aside from the Keurig coffee maker in our room (ah, perfect for a coffee lover like me), we also had the most BEAUTIFUL view of the mountains from our window. Can’t complain! 🙂

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The day we arrived was actually the day we were supposed to do the Yellowstone tour. Since our flight was delayed we already missed half day of the tour. After we settled in, we still went ahead and drove to Yellowstone and just met my mom and her friends to the place where they were already at from the tour.

On our way to Yellowstone, we had to drive through parts of the Grand Teton National Park.
The scenery didn’t disappoint. 🙂 Absolutely BREATHTAKING! I was speechless! 🙂

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As we drove along, we were on the lookout for wild animals. I was hopeful that I’d see a bear crossing the road. The only animals we saw were horses from the horseback riders and an elk that was running like a Kenyan that my Iphone camera wasn’t able to catch up for a picture. 🙂

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The drive to Yellowstone from downtown Jackson was approximately 3 hours. We met up with my mom and her friends at one of the parks in Yellow Stone called Mud Volcano and Sulphur Cauldron – which were exactly what they sound like – muddy, sulfury and smelly geysers and mud pits.

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This place was pretty cool! There were bubbling mudpots, splashing hot springs, and the large, steaming Dragon’s Mouth Spring which is a cave that has boiling water coming out of it

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I read somewhere there that it was called Dragon’s Mouth because when the original settlers of the area came upon this cave, they had thought that there was a dragon that lived inside because of the steam coming out of it and the roaring noise that the boiling water was making as it was coming out. Pretty cool. It’s amazing that boiling water can actually come out of the Earth, naturally. 🙂

This place has a short trail (1/2 mile) that loops around and passes through more mud geysers and mud volcano.

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Unfortunately for us, this was already the last leg of my mom and her friends’ Yellowstone tour (ugh flight delays!). But it’s ok. At least we got to see a little bit of Yellow Stone. I was looking forward on seeing more like the Old Faithful but they say, it’s another hour to get there and it’s already getting late. Oh well, next time! And please no more delayed flights!

On our way back to our hotel, we stopped at several spots to admire the views and take photos.

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You can see the mountains pretty much the whole time you’re driving through the main highway.

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We were surrounded by beauty everywhere we looked!

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The Tetons were so majestic and this was our view the whole time we were here. 🙂

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DAY 2:

My husband and I woke up early the next day and started our day with a morning run. We didn’t want to miss the opportunity to go for a run in this BEAUTIFUL place. Had to be done! 🙂

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We ran at the National Elk Refuge, located just at the edge of downtown Jackson. It’s a nice paved pathway that runs several miles long. It is wide open and next to the main road where a lot of cars pass by so, I didn’t have to worry much about startling wildlife. Yes, it would be awesome to see some wild animals (far away from me),  but I don’t fancy elks and grizzly bears joining me on my run! LOL!. 🙂

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It was an absolutely BEAUTIFUL run. We got in a nice little 4-mile out-and-back and took in a lot of BEAUTIFUL sights. This pathway goes a long stretch, so you can easily go for more if you want to. We just had to go back right away to our hotel and get ready for the day’s planned activities.

That day, we rode the Jackson Hole Tram up to the Rendezvous Mountain.

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This place is actually a ski resort in the winter. We are definitely putting this place on our list to go for our snowboarding trip! Jackson Hole ski area boasts the largest vertical drop, double black diamond trail in the US. The trail is called “The Peak” of Rendezvous Mountain. You canNOT make me go snowboard down that trail even if you pay me millions of dollars. No way! That thing is very high and very steep. I’ll leave that to Travis Rice! LOL! Definitely not for the faint of heart like me. It’s worth the trip up there though if you are for nothing else than the views. 🙂

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The tram was about 9-minute ride from the base of the ski resort and glides 4,139 vertical feet to the top of Rendezvous Mountain. To really appreciate just how big the Jackson Hole Valley is, you need to ride this tram.

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The views were AMAZING on the way to the top!

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And views got even better as we made it to the top!

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GORGEOUS view!

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Once you are on top, it will give you a bird’s eye view of the region and trails that offer some great day hiking opportunities. Don’t forget your bear spray! 🙂

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We spent the whole morning exploring the mountain

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Words are inadequate to describe how AMAZING this place was!

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Also, on top of this mountain, you’ll find a casual dining restaurant called, The Deck and a fine dining, Couloir. I read good reviews about these restaurants. We will have to try them next time. Just imagine dining-in with awesome views on top of the mountain – MUST DO!

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For our next adventure, we went horseback riding. 🙂
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In the pic below, our guide was just telling me (casually, like it was no biggie) that we’re going to climb to an elevation of 8,000ft up the mountain. Say wah?! Uhhhhm, I, who have never been on a horse, and here you are telling me we are climbing those steep mountains – that kinda freaked me out! LOL! Then, I asked him if I can back-out. 😛

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Well, as you can see in the pic below, I’m still there …looking so helpless. LOL! 🙂

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I am glad our guide didn’t let me back-out or I would miss this AMAZING experience. He probably knew I would regret it had I chosen to be left behind. It was definitely a wonderful two-hour ride with everyone  (my husband, my mom, and her friends). My nervousness went away and got the hang of it as we went on. The steep up and down was manageable and enjoyable for all of us.

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The part where we were literally climbing up by the cliffside was a little scary for me but I learned to calm myself down. Deep breaths! I had to woooooosah a few times. Haha. 🙂

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Once we reached the top, the view again was of course LOVELY! 🙂

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I love the experience. It kinda made me feel a little like real cowgirl! 🙂 I already miss my horse, Clinton. He was very good and so gentle to me. I barely needed to guide him because he was trained and knew the trail so well.

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After that, we had dinner at the barn included in the package for the horseback riding. Then, everyone called it a day, back to our hotels, and end of DAY 2. 🙂

Onto our Day 3!: 🙂

We went to the visitor center to ask for an easy, short, and nice scenic trail to go for hiking. They highly recommended the Jenny Lake Trail.

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There’s so much to do in Jackson Hole! Can’t decide which one to do first!

Jenny Lake is not far from the city proper and is located just inside the Grand Teton National Park. It is one of the most popular trails that it was crowded when we went. So much so that we couldn’t even find a parking spot after multiple orbits of the main lots down near the campground.

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Once parked, we paid for a shuttle boat to take us across the lake to the trail.

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From there, we started hiking up to Inspiration Point

The hike followed this river/stream.

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Half way through the hike, you’ll pass the Hidden Falls. I really love waterfalls, so I loved seeing this gem! So BEAUTIFUL!

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The pic below was a spot where people climb up to get the best view of the falls.

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After Hidden Falls, we continued our hike up to the Inspiration Point.

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We allowed ourselves to rest during the hike and enjoy the scenery.

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It was a bit of a strenuous climb and might be quite a challenge for some, but it was a lot of fun! My husband and I got some good exercise that day. 🙂

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And finally, we made it to the Inspiration Point at 7200ft.

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With a BEAUTIFUL view like this, definitely worth the hike. 🙂

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We stayed for a while to enjoy the GORGEOUS GORGEOUS view!

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Back down to the trail head, we took the shuttle boat again back to the parking lot. The ride across Jenny Lake was definitely lovely and refreshing. 🙂 It was hot that day but the hike was a lot of fun!

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After our hike and much needed lunch (whew, that hike made us really hungry), we were then off to our next adventure.

We went White Water Rafting! YEAH!!! THAT ONE WAS SOOO MUCH FUN and probably the highlight of our Jackson Hole trip. 🙂

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For the whitewater rafting, we were 9 on the boat including our guide and each were given a paddle.

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After being given a short lesson on paddling, we were off down the Snake River.

In case you are wondering, whitewater rapids fall into 6 different classes/categories. 6 is the toughest. This one we did was Category 3.

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Our guide gave us instructions on what signals he would give us at the appropriate time in the rapids.

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Everyone in the boat, including me, was a first timer. In situation like this, I can’t help but feel anxious. Naturally, I didn’t know what to expect.

P1020141We drifted for a while to become acclimated, but as we got closer to the rapids we were instructed to paddle through it. We went down a total of eight miles of the snake river.

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Some waves were stronger than others that felt like I was going to fall off the boat. LOL!

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But our guide had instructed us on how we should position our feet underneath the folds of the raft so that we’d be less likely to fall overboard. And oh, we got really soaked! Our group was laughing and getting drenched happily as we rode wave after wave.

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We were also fortunate enough to see bald eagles, ospreys, and their nests along the way. Our entire trip through the snake river was like a picture postcard….BEAUTIFUL!

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About 3/4 through the ride, our guide took us to a nice spot for a picnic-style-BBQ-dinner-by-the-river which was already included in the price.

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Dinner included a 9oz. sirloin steak or trout, potato salad, pasta salad, garlic bread, corn on the cob, dutch oven cobbler and hot/cold beverages.  My husband got the steak and I got the trout and both were exceptionally tasty. I love the peach cobbler too! Everything was actually good! 🙂 $80 for 3-4 hours and a solid dinner is definitely well worth the price! We also had a chance to get to know our fellow raft mates during the picnic and ruminate about how great the day was. We stayed there for about 30-45 minutes and then off to hit the water again. 🙂

Ja on the RUNThe rapids along the Snake River each have different names. I forgot the other ones but what I remember the most was the “Champagne”. It’s the deepest part of the river and the oxygen in the water bubbles up like champagne. Pretty cool!

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The entire journey lasted about 4 hours. All in all, it was a great and exhilarating experience.

I couldn’t resist buying these photos for $45/each (notice that I’m not really paddling, LOL :P).

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I can now cross this off of my bucket list! And I will definitely do it again!

Another nice thing, there were bathrooms and changing rooms in the parking area. So, I grabbed my dry clothes from the bus and changed. 🙂  It was nice that I didn’t have to be soaking wet and shiver in the cold on the way back to the city proper. So, BRING EXTRA CLOTHES!

Mad River let us rent their waterproof camera which had like a floating device attached to it so it just floats in the water if you accidentally drop it. You can ask for one If you plan to take pictures. 🙂

It really was a fantastic experience and I can’t recommend it highly enough. I challenge anyone who for whatever reason tend to play it safe by sticking with the usual mundane activities on holidays to TRY THIS! Dare to try something different!

Day 4: Last day 😦

We spent our last day exploring downtown Jackson. 🙂

Our flight that day was not until later in the afternoon. We decided to check-in our luggage first thing in the morning at the airport. We did that so we didn’t have to worry about getting late for our flight while we explore and make the most of our last few remaining hours in Jackson Hole.
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Jackson Hole Airport and the Tetons in the background! GORGEOUS!

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IMG_3764After checking-in our luggage, we were off to check out downtown Jackson.

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There were lots of t-shirt stores, souvenir shops, bars, and restaurants.

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And if you missed your chance to get a photo of the antler arch at the airport, there are 4 antler arches in the town square.

_MG_8307We searched in Yelp for good restaurants in the area for lunch. We decided to try Sweetwater. We went there and got a table at their patio outside. We were in the middle of summer days that time and it was extremely hot. So, I asked if we could be seated in the dining room inside where it’s cooler with a ceiling fan on. Unfortunately, they weren’t opening that inside area for that day. So, all diners had to be seated outside and sweat in the blazing heat! Combine that with a waiter who was lacking in interpersonal skills, not to mention SSSSLOWWW. :/

Ja on the RUN

Anyway, I ordered their Veggie Wrap and Vanilla Pear soup which was yummy! So, that kinda compensated the situation. Ha! Just feed the hungry lady already so she can stop complaining! LOL! 😛

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Last meal in Jackson Hole!

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After lunch, we roamed around some more, bought souvenir stuff, returned our rental car, and
took the shuttle bus to the airport. 😦
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It was hard saying goodbye to this BEAUTIFUL place. We had a bit of rough start with our flights being delayed but we definitely had a wonderful time! There were no dull moments. We were on the go from morning-to-dark everyday taking in all the Jackson Hole area has to offer and we still didn’t get to do everything! There’s so much to do! Now, that we finally got a taste of it, we are definitely going back!

Ja on the RUN

So long Jackson Hole! It was one helluvah fun adventure!

If you have never been to Jackson Hole before, go there! I highly recommend it. Prepare for your first visit to be mind-blowing. The people are AMAZING and the scenery is out of this world!

There you go! Three more stops to go and I am completely finish with my vacation recaps. Then back to my regular postings! 🙂 STAY TUNED!

Have you been to Jackson Hole before? Which one is your favorite activity?

Xoxo, Ja

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It’s A Good Weekend!

(This post was supposed to be up yesterday but for some reason, my pictures were not loading properly. Oh well… here it is.)

Weekends come and go.  The best thing about it though is that it’s a repeating process. You get over one and you know there’s another coming up.  There is always opportunity to make up for a bad weekend by having a good one the following week.

So what made this weekend good for me?

My weekend was action packed with running and events.

Saturday morning, my husband and I were up bright and early and started our day off with our usual morning run.

Just an easy relax run, focusing on our breathing more.

Yup! As you can see, I finally got my “Runners for Boston” shirt! 🙂 Remember when I told you guys on my previous post that I wasn’t able to get one because my size got sold out quick. Well, when my husband and I picked up his new running shoes at the running store last Friday, I saw this booth where people picked up their “Runners for Boston” shirts.  I asked one of the sales lady if they still had any more shirts available and she told me that there’ll be no more stocks coming in. A lady at the counter about to pay for her stuff overheard and approached me. She told me that I can just have her shirt. I asked if she was sure, she certainly said yes. I got so excited! As I was giving her my payment, she said “no, it’s okay, you don’t have to, I was going to donate for Boston anyway”. I couldn’t stop thanking her. I hugged her!  She’s soooo nice. That became the highlight of my weekend. Runners truly are very kind people! 🙂

We also learned that our running store was able to raised $18,000+ to donate to the One Fund Boston. They just sent out the check that day. Wow!

After lunch, we headed over to the Flying Pig Expo. We did not run this race this year but we still wanted to check out the expo. I love to check out deals on running gears and see what kind of free swag we could get. :p

I was impressed at this expo last year when we registered for this race. For me, this one was definitely the best compared to the ones I went to for my half marathon races last year.

It’s sponsored by Proctor &Gamble (P&G is based in Cincinnati) so you’d expect a lot of freebies from the company.

We arrived a little late so it wasn’t so crowded. No lines. We meandered our way through the Flying Pig memorabilia area.

We got more Boston Strong shirts – more donations to the One Fund Boston. 🙂

We stumbled upon this Green B.E.A.N. Delivery. It’s a year-round grocery delivery service that hooks people up with local & sustainable food. My husband and I thought it’s a very cool concept. It’s an easy way to get local, organic, and humanely-raised food that’s hard to find in a supermarket. All you have to do is log on to your account online and choose the items you want. You can choose to set your delivery every week or every other week. It’s delivered right to your home (or office). You don’t have to deal with the chore of going to the grocery store anymore to get some good quality produce. Isn’t that awesome?!  I’m sure they have more options but you can just check out their website for more details.

We are considering getting the $35 bin, set to every other week delivery. This comes loaded with organic veggies and fruits. That would probably be more than enough for the two of us for two weeks.

Have you heard or tried this kind of service before?

The expo was easy to move through and still very well-organized as last year! 🙂

We weren’t able to make it when they were giving out sample freebies from Proctor and Gamble. Last year, we got several varieties of Olay skin creams, tampons (my husband didn’t want those), laundry scent booster, Dawn Power clean, and more! We missed out this time. :p

We got a lot of goodies though from the vendor section such as Bio Freeze, vitamins, assorted snacks, Koru yogurt, ice cream, Dick’s bag, gloves, seat cushions and a lot more, aside from the ones we purchased for an awesome deal!

They even had free photobooths. 🙂

On Sunday, after church, we headed back downtown again to the Flying Pig event to cheer for our friends who ran the marathon.

Friends, Tim (@ghstrnnr) and Nires (@therunnerfly), drove all the way from Chicago for this race. They’ve ran several marathons already and both love to travel to join races. My husband and I are so inspired by them. They’ve inspired us to train for a marathon someday.

AWESOME JOB GUYS! 🙂

We took them to a nice seafood lunch after their race.

It started raining harder after lunch but we managed to take a few good pictures of Cincinnati in the rain before we could let them go, back to Chicago. 🙂

Congratulations to everyone who ran and finished

the Flying Pig!

This last weekend was a great weekend for me.  I always say a good weekend for me would include the following:

* Spending time with friends.
* Exercising, like running, biking, or hitting the gym.
* Hanging out with the family.
* Eating! Good food of course!
* Downtime to relax and chill especially after a hard work week.
* Being productive

Those are the things that I would consider to be a perfect weekend.

What makes a good weekend for you?!

Do you enjoy going to race expos? What is your favorite part of going?

Xoxo, JOTR

LINKS:
Like my blog’s facebook page here:  Ja-ontheRUN Blog
Check out my silly photo adventures on Instagram here: @ja_ontherun

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“Runners for Boston” in Cincinnati

Last night, running stores across the nation conducted a running event called “Runners for Boston” to gather all runners across America to support Boston and those affected in the bombing.

When I heard about this event, I knew I wanted to take part. As avid runners, my husband and I went to our local running store here in Cincinnati, Bob Roncker’s, to participate and show our support and love for the city of Boston.

I wore again my souvenir hoodie from my Boston trip.

As we walked up to the running store, I immediately saw a sea of runners and walkers gathered all together and wearing the iconic blue and yellow of the Boston Marathon. It was a beautiful sight.

I was moved seeing a lot of runners and walkers showing their support.  Runners of all ages. I even saw a nun!

I was trying to take a picture of the old man in orange and blue. He was wearing a 1987 Boston Marathon jacket. He was there to participate and STILL running (props to him!) 🙂

One of the organizers from the running store spoke a few words before we run.


I got teary eyed during the part when we were asked to take a moment of silence to say a prayer. It still saddens me when I think about the last week’s event but being part of this community made me feel a sense of belonging. It just felt so good to be out there that day with amazing people.

We sang the national anthem and took off running.

We did a 3 mile loop around the neighborhood of Hyde Park Square. That night’s run wasn’t about speed or your training. It was all about reflecting, honoring, and healing. Everyone smiled and waved as they passed each other . There was a unified peace in all of us.

Told you I saw a nun. So awesome! 🙂

It was a beautiful sunset run. We all ended up at the running store again. We stayed and chatted a bit with other runners.

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There were “Runners for Boston” shirts available for sale with 100% of proceeds going to One Fund Boston. We wanted to buy, but our size were already sold out. We were told to check again next week. 🙂

Love these stickers!

Funny sticker that made everyone laugh. 🙂

The run turned out great! My husband and I had a wonderful time showing our support.

By the way, news crews from different TV stations in Cincinnati were there and this event was featured last night in the local news on tv.


You can watch it here. 🙂

Runners for Boston on WLWT News 5 🙂

Yesterday was a very special day for the running community & the city of Boston. Incredibly proud to be part of it. We’re not going to let two people or terrorists stop us from doing what we love.

Did you join a Runners for Boston event?

Happy running to all of you!

Xoxo, JOTR

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JaOnTheRun
Instagram: @ja_ontherun

Spring, Where Are You?

Yup, this is our weather today.

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It’s still snowing since yesterday here. It’s supposed to snow nonstop until tomorrow night. I am desperately waiting for the spring but the winter just refuses to leave. Maybe we should send our seasons a calender so they will know when it’s time for them to make their entry. Spring, it’s really time for you to come in. 🙂

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So, I was under the impression it was spring. This was my attempt to do yoga on a warm sunny day. (LOL!) 🙂

Photo Mar 25, 9 35 11 AMMy husband and I were supposed to go out yesterday morning to go running. That was the plan. But this weather really drained our motivation to go outside. If it wasn’t below freezing I would so be out running. We ended up just staying home. 😦

I got bored. I couldn’t just let this weather stop me from working out! What’s a girl to do?

Play POP Pilates DVD! 🙂

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I really like Cassey Ho, the pilates instructor. She’s very motivating. She’s the blogger behind Blogilates. I found her You tube videos when I was looking for a good Pilates DVD. I got hooked on her videos and decided to get her POP PIlates DVD.

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Cassey has a very bubbly personality.  She is great at explaining the moves and motivates you to fight through the pain and burn! She does the workout so effortlessly! I am amazed at how she still manages to keep the conversation going while in those difficult moves and positions. I was like “How can she even talk doing this spider plank, LOL!”

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Her workouts are definitely a killer. The moves are tough which I like because I get challenged more, but, she always provides modifications. I am a bit sore right now as I type this post. I don’t mind, it only just means I had a great workout.

As she always says in her videos, “Sore today, strong tomorrow!” 🙂

If you’re looking for a fun Pilates video and at the same time challenging, this is it! I definitely recommend this DVD for all fitness levels. But for those of you who are new to Pilates, it’s better if you check out her videos for beginners first to prep you for the more intense DVD workout.

Oh, you should check out her Blogilates Shop. She’s got some cute inspirational tanks, pretty gym totes and yoga bags.

Have you done Pilates? Love it? Hate it?

Does the weather affect your motivation to exercise?

Have a great week!!!

(P.S. My giveaway is still up. Head over to this link if you want to participate:))

Long Over Due Liebster Award

I can’t believe I have let so much time pass since receiving this award from one of my favorite bloggers, Wendy @slowgirlfastdog. It’s better late than never! 🙂

So, here is my long overdue ‘thank you’ for a Liebster Award nomination.
Thank you so very much, Wendy! I am over the moon with gratitude. I love your blog so much and I admire all your posts about your accomplishments! Keep it up! 🙂

Since it’s my second time getting this (my first one here), so I kinda already know how it works. (I am humbled and touched that you guys want to know more about me).

To accept this award nomination, there are a few things I must do.   Here goes…

The Rules for the Liebster Award are as follows:

1.) Link back to the blogger who gave you this award – DONE! 🙂
2.) Post 11 things about yourself – See below
3.) Answer the questions asked of you – I enjoyed answering your questions, Wendy.
4.) Create 11 new questions for your nominees to answer
5.) Nominate 11 people you think deserve the award and link them to your post
6.) Go to their pages and tell them they have been chosen

11 Random Things About Me.

1.) My name Jaliza came from three different names – Janet, Lita, Zaida.
Lita is my mom, Janet and Zaida are my mom’s bestfriends and my godparents. When they were in college, they agreed that whoever gets pregnant first should name her child after their names. My mom had a baby first and Jaliza was born – that’s me! 🙂
I thought it’s a pretty cool thing to do among friends. 🙂

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Me with my godparents and mom on my wedding day
From L-R: Janet, me, Zaida, Lita (my mom)

2.) I love vintage. There’s something about it that I find interesting. Think back to the days of old where the guys wore suspenders & newsies, and the ladies wore beautiful dresses with delicate lace gloves -1940s era. I love old suitcases, old pictures, vintage frames, etc. I have always been amazed whenever I see pictures and movies from the old times. I find it artsy & classy. Visit my pinboard for my collection of pictures of my favorite vintage finds.

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vintage camera

I had to incorporate my passion for vintage design to my wedding. 🙂

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Engagement Pic

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Guestbook Area at our Reception

Post cards as our guest book alternative

Post cards as our guest book alternative

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Vintage typewriter

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set cards area.

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Our bridal car

3.) I love earth tones.
Every girl loves color pink. That is the typical stereotype. However, I don’t belong in that category. I don’t hate pink; it’s just not me; not my personality. It’s not the first color that I would choose for myself. I love the colors green, brown, beige, warm gray, orange, cream, and purple, hence, the color palette I chose for my motif during my wedding.

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wedding day shoes

wedding day shoes

4.) I prefer wearing flats than heels.
I honestly prefer wearing flats and sneakers. I wear heels for certain occasions but that’s it. I don’t want to wear them daily. Wearing heels can be very uncomfortable for me. They hurt my feet after a long time walking in them. I feel relaxed and comfortable using flat shoes. During the wedding, I changed into my sneakers for the reception. My husband and I did a crazy dance opening and I needed to be comfortable. Plus, I knew I was going to do a lot of walking to entertain guests. It definitely was a great idea!

Wedding Shoes | Athlete Within Ja

*** Oh, looks like I’ve shared quite few of our wedding pics. 🙂

5.) I love Word Games. I’ve mentioned in my previous Leibster Award that I love Scrabble. There is also a game called Scramble, which I play every free waking moment on my iPhone. I think my addiction is getting pretty bad. Sometimes when I close my eyes, I will see a board of letters and start making words in my mind. I even had a dream about playing! It’s crazy!

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Let’s play! Just search for my user name: JaML905

6.) I am a little neat and clean freak. I hate it when our house gets cluttered! I like things to be in certain ways. I get anxious if something is even a little bit out of place. I also make sure I disinfect our kitchen countertop after using them. It relaxes me when the house is clean and everything is in order. With that being said, let’s proceed to the next one.

7.) I make all our visitors take off their shoes. We walk through mud, the bathroom floor at a gas station, garbage juice, dried vomit, and all kinds of toxic waste outside. I don’t want that tracked inside the house because I do some exercises in my home that involves lying on our carpet floors. Sometimes, it feels awkward to ask guests to remove their shoes but I found a way to politely ask them to do it. I made this cute sign and hung it outside of our front door. Thanks to Pinterest for the idea! 🙂

Please Remove Your Shoes | Athlete Within Ja

This little sign is perfect! They get the message and they remove their shoes without me telling them. I know not everyone that comes over are prepared to go shoeless. So I placed a basket filled with soft guest slippers in all sizes by our front door. That way, our guests would still be comfortable to walk around our house.

8.) I hate the taste of beer. It just taste terrible to me. I’d go for wine and cocktails for alcoholic beverages. 🙂
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9.) English is my second language. Tagalog (Filipino) is my first. My husband and I are fluent in English and Tagalog. When we have a child, we want him/her to learn both languages well.

10.) I love scented candles. After a workout, nothing beats taking a warm shower with a very soothing, menthol scent of eucalyptus scented candle. So relaxing. 🙂

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11.) I get so cold easily. I am so terribly sensitive to the cold especially my extremities, fingers and toes. I love winter and snow but I have cold intolerance. I need to really bundle up when we go out in winter months. I am truly thankful for discovering this wonderful product – Hot Hands hand warmers. It’s a savior! In addition to gloves, I have Hot Hands inside.

I enjoy outdoor activities in all seasons. In the cold months, I have to find quality winter gears and clothing perfect for me or else I’ll die of hypothermia (LOL!). One of my favorites is the Columbia base layer socks. I wear them to go snowboarding, running outdoors in the cold or even on regular days. It is very effective in keeping my feet warm. They have it in colors blue, black (which are the ones I got), and pink (told you, I am not a pink person).

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11 Questions Wendy asked me:

  1. What was your favorite comic strip as a child?
    I was a fan of Archie comic books. I grew up with Archie, Betty, Jughead, Veronica, and the rest of their gang. 🙂
  2. Do you own any pets?  If so, what kind?
    I don’t have pets. Unfortunately, I suffered from Bronchial Asthma as a child. Having pets will trigger my asthma symptoms.
  3. Why do you blog?
    I started blogging to keep track of my progress and I wanted to share my love for running. There’s no other social media out there that gave me this sense of belonging. Blogging to me is a community of like-minded people who all share the same passion, hopes, and dreams. It is such a positive place to be when I’m feeling down. People say I inspire them, I’m inspired by them too! The support I get from the blogging community is just awesome.
  4. If you could only own one book, what would it be?
    The World Almanac because it’s packed with information.
  5. Do you color inside the lines or outside?
    Inside the lines… @@
  6. What word would your mother use to describe you?
    My mom is a Psychiatrist, so she would describe me as crazy. LOL! 🙂
  7. What word would your best friend use to describe you?
    My husband is my best friend, he describes me as crazy too. Hmmm.
  8. What is your biggest pet peeve?
    Boastful and arrogant people.
  9. Have you ever been in a bar brawl?
    Nope and I don’t intend to.
  10. Do you believe in ghosts?
    I don’t. I shouldn’t but I still really can’t sleep alone at night without a night light.
  11. What have you done to prepare for a zombie invasion?
    Interval training workouts to improve my speed and endurance. I need to run faster than a zombie. :p

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Now, your turn guys!

Nominees I would love to know more about:

1.) Nicole @Fruit ‘N’ Fitness
2.) Cori @Olive to Run
3.) Kidd @Memoirs of a Kidd
4.) Tink @The Running Paintbrush – love her paintings!!!
5.) Kate @Run with Kate
6.) Cait @The Arty Runnerchick
7.) Catyo @My Pursuit of Happiness and Skinny Jeans
8.) Stacy @Will Run For Glitter
9.) Amy @The Tiny Terror
10.) Ella @Pursuit of Health and Happiness
11.) Jypsie @Board N Ready to Go

My questions for you:
1.) Tulips or Roses?
2.) If you receive one million cash, how would you spend it?
3.) When do you blog?
4.) What is your favorite day of the week?
5.) Pilates or Yoga?
6.) What is the kindest thing you did?
7.) What is your greatest achievement so far and why?
8.) What’s something you learned recently?
9.) What is your favorite store to buy your workout clothes?
10.) What is your favorite item you own?
11.) What is your biggest goal this year 2013

Just want to say to the bloggers I nominated that I love reading your blog, your adventures, recipes and I look forward to all your posts! 🙂

THANKS and have a good day!!!

P.S. My giveaway is still up. Head over to this link if you want to participate. 🙂