Tag Archives: travel

I vow to shift my focus.

Sometimes, shifting my focus is harder than others. But as I have gotten the hang of it as I have needed to shift my focus and perspective at times, I am at a point where I want to make it a vow…to always shift my focus. Because when you do, it does wonders for the soul.

For example…

Instead of dreading my Sunday morning flight to the annual sales kick off for my company in Southern California, complaining that I *only* have one weekend day and will be sad to leave M….

I will shift my focus and embrace every minute of my abbreviated weekend, I will plan ahead, I will pack early, I will get settled so I can thoroughly enjoy what I do have. Teaching at barre n9ne (yay), seeing a few open houses (double yay!) and then a leisurely date night in dinner (triple yay – recreating the first meal M ever made for me!).

Instead of stressing over un-routine while away Sunday – Wednesday…

I will shift my focus and embrace it, plain and simple. There is nothing I can do to change it, so I will adjust, I will plan ahead, I will be normal, and I will go with the flow (something incredibly difficult for me but I am learning!!). I will also enjoy the 60 degree temperate jump (from the 1 degree it was here yesterday…) even though it will rain almost the whole time (shifting, shifting…)

Instead of complaining about having to travel for work…

I will shift my focus and give myself a huge dose of reality: this is my last work trip alone for the foreseeable future (M will be with me on my trip in April, yay!) and let’s be honest: I work from home. I have flexibility with my job (and it is a job I love!), and when I do travel, it’s to sunny, warm Orange County. Seriously right now?! Self: stop being lame.

Instead of wishing and wanting to run longer, farther, better…

I will shift my focus and realize that my IT band is getting stronger, and I got to run TWICE this week with ZERO pain (yay!) and I am able-bodied to do so many other things – spin, walk, barre…this is just a blip in the radar, and far bigger issues in this world than the inability to run for a month or two.


Writing out my thoughts sometimes helps me process them, of course, but also see how strong the mind really is. If you let it go haywire, you will lose perspective, harness a skewed reality, and focus on the wrong things…and be negative.

If you shift your focus and really see the bottom line on the things that nag at you? You will harness them into a better, happier, more positive reality – the REAL reality of life…that in the grand scheme of it, these ‘things’ or frustrations are just that – things. In the grand scheme of it, life is amazing, and every obstacle, frustration or challenge is an opportunity to flourish and prove to yourself what you are capable of, in mind, body and soul.

I vow…to shift my focus. Always.


An update and tidbits.

Today’s an update and quasi random post kind of day.

An update on the knee. 

Well, it’s not much of a surprise to me, but after my first PT appointment today, it is indeed IT band syndrome that is affecting my knee when I run.   What was a surprise is that it is BOTH IT bands that are uber tight, yet, only my right knee is bothering me. The loose plan is for me to foam roll the crap out of my IT band (on both sides) between now and Friday’s appointment. At that appointment, she will have me run for a few minute and watch my gait (side note: I am ridiculousness excited to run, even if it is just for a few minutes!) and prescribe some strengthening exercises that we will work on for the next few weeks. I cannot run for at least a week, maybe two, and then she will have me slowly ramp up running again (yay!).

I actually feel really good about this and think, per today’s She Reads Truth, it all has a point. I am meant to learn from this – already, learning – I don’t stretch enough, nor foam roll (barely) at all, and I could only stay un-injured for so long, in my opinion. I am grateful to catch it early and fix it now. Now, to make this a habit, long term. I WILL. I MUST. It also tells me I need to continue to cross-train, keep my legs strong, spin, walk, work on stronger hamstrings (suggested exercises for the ole hammies welcomed!). 

Branching out, of the food variety.

It’s no secret that I have a love affair with oatmeal for breakfast. And wraps for lunch (of the Joseph’s, Flatout, and Fiber One variety!). Love, love, LOVE them. But lately, I have started to wonder if I need to branch out a little. Try some new options and intersperse them with my standbys. I will alternate lunches and do up some loaded salads (tuna, chicken salad, hard boiled eggs etc), but I always go back to wraps. And oatmeal for breakfast? Forget it, I never change this one. Hardly ever. Maybe eggs and toast for breakfast on a weekend day. But beyond that, not much.

I started a new board on Pinterest on all things Greek yogurt, because I want to play around with alternate breakfasts, like yogurt and fruit bowls, maybe a smoothie if I can find one that is fueling yet not uber caloric either. My mind is a little all over the place here. Because I like my go-to’s. I LOVE them. But I think change is good. So I look to you, friends, for your latest and greatest finds and suggestions! Please share 🙂

Travel upcoming.

It’s that time again. More work travel abounds! A week from Sunday, I am off to California for my company’s sales kick off. It’s my third year attending, and while I hate leaving on a Sunday, I am actually looking forward to it this year…in large part because this girl is ALSO going to California for her sales kick off and it’s a town away from MINE (WHAT are the odds?!), so what did we do? Booked our return flight home from LAX together! That’s right, 6 hours of straight up FUN flying home. Probably the first time I will ever look forward to a long flight. We may have too much fun of the let’s have a drink (or 8) variety, but I think it shall be epic 😉


In April, M and I are going to Napa!! No, it’s not Healdsburg, BUT it’s a close second. He has a conference in Napa and of course I am tagging along. OF COURSE. Who wouldn’t!? So off we go in late April to Napa for a few days and then…to Southern Cali so I can go to work for a few days and finally – finally – show him around where I work, meet co-workers etc. I am REALLY excited about both parts of this trip!!

So, there ya have it, some random updates and tidbits on this Tuesday-can’t-believe-it’s-not-Wednesday post 😉

(PS bet you are surprised I didn’t write anything about barre n9ne in this post. Me too. Hehe. More on that later this week, I am thinking!) Don’t forget to share your latest foodie finds with meeeee! 🙂



Friday Random Travelin’ Facts

It’s Friiiiidaayyyyyy!!!! <—-who’s excited, raise your hand?!

Anytime I travel, Friday is just that much sweeter, I have to say. As much I as try my best to embrace work travel, as I said yesterday, it is just so damn tiring, no matter what. So I figured I’d share some fun random travelin’ facts for today, some funny, some learnings and such 😉

I never feel settled until I unpack, start a load of laundry, clean up a little (this depends on if M ‘tidies up’ for me before my arrival heehee), no matter what time I get home. Last night, I scored an earlier flight so I was home around 9 and did all of the aforementioned in 20 minutes. I don’t eff around, yo 😉

I always go into OATT planning my workouts, my meals and of course, my outfits. And I always bring too many outfits (but usually almost always use a backup outfit I packed, for the record!) and enough snacks to feed an army (but you never know when you might be caught without a meal and have to rely on snacks, right?!).

I’m a nervous nellie traveler. And not in the fear of flying way. My worst fear is missing a flight or being late to board without a coffee, water, or meal (depending on how long the flight is, if I buy a meal or rely on aforementioned snacks!). I also fear layovers in ‘red flag’ snow/delay zones in the winter like Chicago, Minneapolis, Denver and avoid them (and layovers) at all costs. Sometimes it is inevitable, but my second worst fear is sleeping in the airport 😉

I love exploring new barre studios, gyms, and running routes when I travel. I’m always excited when the hotel offers a running route or map and I always scope out the hotel gym the night before. If there are two treadmills in the whole gym, you better be damned I’m getting one 😉 If I can find a barre studio to try out, I will, and have found a few cool ones in areas that I travel to frequently. Double score, right? (though my heart belongs to barre n9ne, of course).

I hate my routine being out of whack, so I try to mimic my week as much as I can (at least when I travel to California to the office). I plan my workouts (aforementioned barre studios!), I try and determine my meals for the week, bring lots of snacks and try to mirror my beloved oatmeal if I can. It just makes me feel more ‘at home’ than winging it. It’s again, the way I roll 😉

As much as I dread the goodbyes, that’s almost always the worst part. There’s never a trip where I don’t learn something about myself, experience something new, or in the case of this week, meet friends!

Okay, so nothing overly weird, but as I am a year and a half into a job that requires a fair bit of travel, I’ve been thinking of my traveling evolution and how much preparedness comes into play for me to have a solid trip that doesn’t make me feel lacking in any way. And allows for a fair bit of exploring and meeting new people. With another work trip (California, this time) 10 days away, I’m rounding out a busy 6 weeks of traveling on-and-off, and am going to try and embrace it as much as I can. Because I know it all goes back to unseating comfort zones and growing.

But I hope you’ll ‘scuse me as I gallivant off towards enjoying the weekend which includes M’s graduation tomorrow. I couldn’t be more proud and cannot wait to see him walk across that stage. Cheers friends!

Throwbacks: a panic attack, revisited.

**Here’s a throwback of a different kind. Most of these have been recaps of stories I’ve shared on my old blog, about my divorce, or things I haven’t shared here, that are part of my story that some of you may not have read. This story and journey I have recapped here. The story of the first year of my new job and all the ups, downs and in-betweens…**

It was this day, a year ago, that my boss went on maternity leave 10 days early. And a day that I had my very first panic attack. Something I’d never experienced before. Suddenly, a wave of nausea, fear and well, panic washed over me. I was scared. I wasn’t ready (or so I felt). And to top it off, I was going to Jamaica in two days (given my boss did not think she was going to go early as it was her first child, my scheduling a trip right before she left didn’t seem to be a big deal…at the time!).

The perfect storm to cultivate a panic attack, no?

I remember sitting at my desk, in my old apartment, texting M frantically, IMing my sister Jess, and tweeting out my feelings to anyone and no one at the same time…scared and worried and wondering how the hell I was going to make it through three months without my boss, my safety blanket and security net, still very new to my job and to working for a global company (speaking of, I had my first call with our China PR team that night, a call I rarely joined, let alone had to lead!) and many names, faces and personalities to cope with. I had a list a mile long of notes, reminders, who to send what and when, yet I was still scared and feeling very unprepared.

And it was then that M said to me: “remember, it’s okay to lose to your opponent, but you shouldn’t lose to fear.”

And that statement, as simple as it sounds, was exactly what I needed to face the next 12 weeks. It was probably the hardest 12 weeks of my career. There were a lot of tears. There was a lot of unknowns I had to just face, and do. There was a lot of faking it, and a lot of questions I hated asking for fear of ‘sounding stupid’ (one of my biggest fears). There was a LOT of travel. There was a shitton of discomfort.

But most of all?

There was a shitton of growth too. I took this job in January 2011 with a hunger to grow, to be pushed, to learn what it is that I want out of this career move, what I want my job to look like. And looking back at the last almost year and a half? I have come incredibly far. I won’t mince words or half-say it. I conquered it. And I am damn proud of that.


There is still so much I need and want to learn. So much more growth. More discomfort (it IS the year of getting out of the ‘zone after all) and reaching the next level. I’ve sensed that change starting. The ‘what am I waiting for’ feeling…just start doing it. Don’t wait for permission. Don’t even ask for it. Just DO it. That’s why I was hired. And that’s why I took it upon myself to request attending two social media events coming up (which I cannot wait to go to!) and why I am trying to approach my day-to-day with more confidence and direction. Not waiting for permission or for the answer to be given to me.

And I think this idea – the premise of unseating comfort zones and *not* waiting for permission can be applied to so much in life. What, precisely, *are* we waiting for? And why are we waiting? Think about it. There is always something ‘on our bucket lists’ or something we want to do ‘when we have time’ but why wait? Why not make it a priority and just for it. Empower yourself. Don’t wait to be empowered.

And that is exactly what I plan to do. No more panic attacks. Just do it. 

Travel daydreaming

I grew up always wanting to travel, yet we never quite had much opportunity to do so, because, well, single parent home, three kids, mom back to school when we were in high school, and clearly there was never quite ‘extra’ funds to go on trips. However, I vividly recall the two trips we did take growing up: Disney when we were 6 (where I proceeded to throw up the entire trip, sad 6-year-old face!) and Niagra Falls with my grandparents when we were uh, maybe 12 or 13? I can’t remember exactly how old we were, but I do vividly recall from that trip, driving in a minivan to Niagra and getting carsick (sensing a theme here? LOL).

So, with that preamble, travel is something I have always wanted to do more of, and now that I can feasibly afford to travel a bit here and there, and take advantage of seeing new places just by nature of work travel, I thought I’d share a few of the spots I hope to hit this year (or in the next few!). With some budgeting and lots of planning ahead, I am excited at the prospect of some fun trips this year (and feel quite blessed and fortunate to be able to do so!).

Here are a few of my picks as I gaze out the window, with some light snow on the ground…travel daydreaming…

Playa del Carmen!! (for this girl’s wedding in October!!! I am thisclose to being able to book this trip and couldn’t be more excited to see Shannon get married. After meeting at Bloggers in Sin City in 2010, and becoming fast friends, I am thrilled to be able to see her, and hopefully some other bloggy besties too!!)


To cheer on my sister and a few other fabulous running bloggy besties as they run the Chicago Marathon! I have never been to Chicago for pleasure, only for work (and those trips have only bee 24 hours or so, not enough time to see a lick of the city!)

I have always wanted to see this!


This is a given, obviously, and I guess it doesn’t truly count as travel, since it’s only 1.5 hours or so away. My plan is to go to Maine on every possible weekend I can this summer, take a week off and unplug for a week, and hopefully meet up with these two lovebirds!

Bliss. I ❤ the lake!


To visit one of my closest (yet farthest away!) friends, Amy and her husband Eric (who I am convinced shares a very similar brain to M, and I know they’d be fast friends!) and new son B. I haven’t visited since April 2010 and I reallyreallyreallyreally hope to spend a weekend there this spring.

Our yumtastic homemade sangria from that trip, two years ago.

 Wild card: Vegas!

My sister Jess and BIL are possibly going in April…and if M’s thesis is done on April 14 as he is slated to be done by, this is a possibility. I think the four of us would have an epic time and so I am marking this as a wild card mini-trip, if it happens 😉

Wild card: WINE COUNTRY quad-peat (that’s not even a word, whatever!)!

This is a huge wild card. I would love to go again, for the fourth year in a row (yea, that sounds excessive to some, perhaps, but every time I have gone, I have fallen in love with it all over again, and last year was so wonderful, to finally share it with M…the only thing missing was my sis Jess and BIL (sensing a theme here?!). I’ll file this under ‘never say never’

*love* this picture...

Now that I sit here looking at the places I hope to go this year…I really hope we can make all of these happen. Like I said, with some planning and budgeting ahead, I think it’s all achievable, it’s just a matter of timing. If it’s meant to be, it will be. And I feel so fortunate to be able to possibly hit up even one of these destinations this year.

I love to travel (even if my work trips are tiresome, it’s still an opportunity to see a new place and experience new foods, towns, and sights!)…what about you? Where are your spots you’d like to hit this year? Any of these?? 🙂