Tag Archives: 2012

2012…the highlights reel.

I almost didn’t write this post, because it is SO hard for me to wrap up a year that was truly one of the best years of my life, but I thought a fun post in ‘highlight reel’ fashion would be a fun way to recap some fun moments.

2012 in highlights:

 I unseated comfort zones, from work, to running, to becoming certified in barre n9ne

I traveled, traveled, traveled (to wine country, Mexico, and the Bahamas)

I experienced an unforgettable wedding

I lived the shit out of Maine, lakation-style

Met blog friends in Atlanta, Chicago Austin, AND Maine ‘bloggy meet-up’ style

I spent more time with my family and sisters, and the most beautiful niece in the world

And the biggest highlight of 2012 most certainly has to be when M asked me to marry him ❤

2012 is a year that I lived, loved, and played hard…a year I truly lived the shit out of. And 2013? I’m coming for you, like whoa. Happy New Year, friends, and thank you all for sharing this year with me, it’s truly been a blessed, gratitude-filled year. ❤


Smarter, not harder.

Smarter…not harder.

My 2012 mantra.

For all things…eating, running, barre n9ne, work, friendships.

This is something Tanya reinforced during a recent barre n9ne intensive workshop and it’s something I have really taken into account when it comes to refining my form in class, but in refining all areas of my life, generally (hello, refinement!).

In workouts, it’s truly not all about how hard you work out. Nope, it’s not. It’s about working out smarter.

Not doing 500 crunches just to say you did 500 crunches. Not sitting at the gym for 3 hours either. Because truly, what can you accomplish in the weight room that takes that many hours and is still effective? If you can do it smarter, you will most certainly be working out at the intensity level you need to actually see results. Focus on proper form, not how many reps you can do, because if you are doing 100 reps of something, you are probably either doing it wrong, or have bad form…see what I mean? Smarter, not harder.

Embarking on my run-challenge has proven to me that I needed to work smarter, that  I needed to be regimented in the runs I choose to do each week and how I space them out. I’ve read countless blogs and articles that talk about running with purpose and not running ‘junk miles’ just to get those miles in. Don’t run a bunch of miles when your legs feel like absolute lead.

Take a day off. Rest them. Stretch them. Choose an alternate workout.

Alternatively, add in different runs to help you improve. Hello, intervals, and recovery runs and for me, ‘long’ runs. This is the first time that I have ever added this level of purpose behind my runs and in the 6 weeks since I started this challenge, I feel like I have already come so far. And why? Because I am working smarter.

The same holds true for my life, in general. I am choosing the friendships that matter most. The friends that are friends in return. That aren’t difficult. That ‘get’ me and genuinely care about me, and me about them.

At work? I am finally feeling like I have my routine down pat, my optimal writing hours vs. my optimal tactical get-shit-done hours, and weaving in some downtime, taking the breaks when I need to, instead of gogogo all day long. The brain needs to rest too, or else how can it think smarter?

Maybe I am rambling with this post, but for me, the premise behind ‘smarter, not harder’ has helped me completely transform everything from my mindset towards everything I face, every challenge, whether it be personal, professional and physical, with a smarter outlook…and even more importantly, without overthinking. 

This mantra, combined with my release from overthinking has been so eye-opening and freeing, it is just incredible. So…I guess I just challenge you to think about it…are you working smarter? Or are you the hamster on the wheel, spinning your wheels and going nowhere fast?

Frankly, I prefer the former. 

**and off I go…Costa Mesa bound tonight, and back on Thursday. Wish me luck on my first work trip of 2012 and lots of 5-hour energy ;-)**

On 2012 fun date bucket lists.

Every Wednesday night, M and I do a ‘date night in’ as the rest of the workweek we usually don’t get to eat dinner together until at least 8, given M works late on Tuesdays and I have barre n9ne two nights a week that mean getting home later than the ‘average’ dinner time. So, inevitably, the night feels rushed, despite our best efforts (to eat dinner at the table – a must, with no distractions, like the TV or our phones).

We both look forward to these dates nights in, as we make them special, we cook together, we have a leisurely evening (M gets home at 5 on Wednesdays, huge score!), and a glass of wine or two (it *is* winesday after all…). So, last night we began talking about trips we’d like to take, things we’d like to do together this year and unofficially came up with a great list of ‘fun date’ night (or day or weekend!) bucket list items for 2012.

Part of the reason in actually writing down our list (and sharing it here), is because I’d rather actually put these into action, rather than say ‘oh, we should go to NYC for the weekend sometime’, or ‘we should check out some local wineries here’ and then never actually get around to planning them. For as type A and a ‘planner’ as I can be, sometimes planning fun things doesn’t always pan out, given how weekends get snapped up so easily sometimes. (part of my rationale in planning out some of these is also two-fold: so I don’t become overplanned or overscheduled either, and dabble some of these in on weekends that are open, and then work around those planned weekends to keep some weekends still freed up for those downtime weekends we ALL need).

(wow that was a ramble to actually get to my list, wasn’t it? Moving on.)

2012 Fun Date Bucket List

(an idea also adapted stolen borrowed from a great list from CBG and Sunshine!):

  1. Take weekend mini-vacations: Since we have decided that we are pretty much not doing a winter vaca anywhere, we came up with a list of mini-vacation spots that are quick to get to and that would allow us to explore some areas, tourist-style (and perhaps to meet up with blog friends in these areas?!). Possibilities include: New York City, Washington DC, Vermont (yes, I live in NE, yet never been to Vermont), Florida (to visit a bestie, Amy. Miss youuu!).
  2. Go on a ‘culinary tour’ of Boston: There are some restaurants I have been dying to try (while I prefer to eat-in much of the time, spreading these out over the year and really saving up for good, quality meals out, fancy-pants style sounds awesome!), so we’ve concocted the idea of a culinary tour of great eats in the city and surrounding areas, including: Mooo, Mistral, L’Espalier, Blue Ginger (Ming Tsai’s restaurant!) and a few of our faves, including Lala Rokh and Bin26.
  3. Try new foods. This is sort of part two to the aforementioned culinary tour. I have tried shabu shabu once (in California) and LOVED it, so I’d love to find a good place here to try. I’ve also always randomly wanted to try Pho and have never had it. Those are two examples, and I’m sure there are others I am forgetting at the moment.
  4. Hit up a local casino, Vegas-style. Since Vegas may or may not be in the cards this year (my sister and brother in law may be going, and there’s an outside chance we could go with them), this is our fun way of capturing the essence of Vegas, but locally. Mohegan Sun or Foxwoods, anyone? (note: I am not a gambler in the slightest, but M enjoys it sometimes and I’m all for a show or a spa excursion while he does that…twist my arm.)
  5. Visit some local wineries. As much as I adore wine country – like whoa – there are some local wineries in New Hampshire and Cape Cod that I always want to try, but never actually do it. Firmly on my list this year!
  6. Spend a weekend on the Cape. Another item that was on my summer bucket list last year, but we never went. Perhaps an early summer or fall trip for this one (too tourist-y and expensive in the dead of summer, and hello, we have Maine!)
  7. Go ice skating on Frog Pond in Boston. Must.
  8. Go to a strip club. Yes, I’m serious.
  9. Go to a Red Sox game this summer. Another one we always talk about doing but never actually do.
  10. Fly a kite. M looked at me funny when I suggested this. But I think it would be fun. Perhaps in tandem with #11…
  11. Go on a picnic! Wine, cheese, fruit. Yes, please.
  12. Go to the Aquarium. Seriously. I love penguins.

So, there you have it, our list of 2012 fun date bucket list ideas. The great thing about this list is that while I’d of course love to do all of them this year, this *is* a bucket list, so we could always carry these forward into next year, too. But my goal would be that we at least hit half of these in 2012. Whatcha think? Any locals wanna join us on any of these? 😉

Cheers to 2012…on refinement.

As 2012 is officially upon us, I thought I’d say a few words about my focus for 2012 (note: no resolutions here, I prefer ‘focus!’) and share some blog changes that I am so excited about!

First, drumroll please, I have *finally* purchased my blog domain, so please update your readers! The new link is: determineduncensored.com. Woohoo!

Second, note the new header and ‘about me’ section…more where these tweaks come in in a later post, but I just wanted to point them out 😉

My new blog title/header? (and my ‘about me’ section – check it out here!)

Determined. To Be…

…a runner, a sister, a lover…living a fit and happy life!

I think that about sums up who I am and who I want to continue to be in just a few words. Focused. Refined.

Because this year is all about refinement.

Refining myself as a runner (because I *am* a runner, oh yes I am!), a sister to my two beautiful and loving sisters, and a lover to M, as we continue our lives together in the coming year. I strive to live a fit and healthy life, as I continue on my barre n9ne fit-tastic journey and as that area of my life continues to expand, with the barre n9ne rundates that Jess and I are now spearheading, and more to come that I’ll share soon.

And finally? A little sneak peek at something I’m working on with the fabulous Sally (aiding me in her fantastic web design skills!)…check out my little badge…more on how I plan to incorporate this into my blog and even the run-challenge. What do you think?? Personally, I love it 🙂

Cheers to 2012…on refinement, focus and of course, FUN.