It rained.

Almost all weekend.

It was actually mostly overcast all weekend, but it was so dark out it looked like it was on the verge of rain so Travis and I spent most of the weekend inside. I drove up on Wednesday to spend a long weekend there since I’m able to work from home 3 days a week. Shortly after arriving I did something there that I haven’t done in over 7 years.

I cooked meat for the boy. It was frozen, pre-coked meat, but I still heated it up on the stove. Somebody’s special.
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He’s into meal prepping just as much as I am and I prepped the stuff for him to make 8 burritos to have for a few days. I even cooked dry beans for the first time in my life. Suzie-freaking-homemaker over here.

Salem felt right at home at Travis’s house. It helped that Travis is the best cat-daddy in the world and pimped out his place with toys, cat stands, and the fanciest of fancy feasts. While Travis was at work Salem and I posted up at the table doing our thing, just like we would be at my place.
2014-07-17 13.41.55And he hung around a lot looking sexy. Just like he would be at my place.

2014-07-18 11.24.20Despite the ominous dark skies it managed to stay clear for us to run both Saturday and Sunday. We covered 6 miles on Saturday, and I did 8 on Sunday without stopping. Typically that’s not a big deal for me but after a few rough weeks with the heat and humidity I was very proud of myself! Travis did a great job motivating me to keep pushing it and re-routing the course once so I could avoid a big hill.

2014-07-18 05.50.06Aside from that we really did spend most of the weekend inside being total couch potatoes. We started watching Freaks and Geeks on Netflix. I saw the show when it was originally on TV but Travis hadn’t seen it. I think we watched about 14 episodes in two days. This is what happens when you don’t have cable and two otherwise TV-disinterested individuals are stuck inside all weekend.

Early Sunday afternoon I made the fantastic discovery that it was National Ice Cream Day! We had to celebrate immediately. Travis is ….. an ice cream freak. There’s no other way to say it. He loves the stuff, and I will never turn down an excuse to eat a pint of Arctic Zero. We ran to Walmart where I found their Mint Chocolate Cookie flavor for the first time and bought them out. The stuff is SO GOOD. Seriously, even if you tried Arctic Zero in the past and think it tastes like flavored water you should give this one a shot.

Travis said he looked like he wanted to fight someone in this photo, but I think he looks hot. So, that’s happening.
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2014-07-20 14.37.37-2Travis finished his pint first and asked for a bite of mine. HA. Not a chance.

What did you do this weekend?
What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? 

Visit a local park and win $400

July 19th, 2014 | Posted by Erica House in Life - (2 Comments)

I LOVE the ‘We Dare You‘ initiative with Untied Healthcare. Every month they have a different dare that centers around being healthy. This month the dare is close to my heart as it involves something I truly love doing – hanging out outside!

Workout7

I always say I only run because I can’t hike every day. If I had my way I’d be out wandering the woods a few times a week. But, I have a job and a life and I can’t become a mountain woman until I’m old and gray and no one would miss me.

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Chances are you will be at a park at some point in July. If not why not set up a family picnic day, or grab your significant other or friend and go for a hike, or just be lazy and lay outside together? I promise it will be fun, and it’s basically free. WIN-WIN.

While you are there be sure to snap a photo and share it here for your chance to win a $400 Amazon Gift card (or one of the $25 weekly gift card prizes!) If your not feeling in a outdoorsy mood take a look at some of the other photos that have been submitted. I’m sitting here inside right now wishing I could be out rolling in the grass!

Sweetwater Trail at Blackwater

Get a jump start on the dare by completing one of the other two dares this month:

We dare you to take the nutrition quiz on the We Dare You website (answer 1 of 31 questions about nutrition…the grand prize is a Cuisinart Advantage Nonstick 15-piece Cookware set)
We dare you to watch our “Why Preventative Care is Important” video and share your opinion to win
UWFHike
When is the last time you hung out at a park?
What are your favorite park activities? 

Workout Wrap Up

Saturday: 8 miles (10:53 pace)

Sunday: 5 miles (10:30 pace)

Monday: 6 miles (10:54 pace)

Tuesday: 7 miles, 10×400 @ 9 minute pace

Wednesday: REST

Thursday: 6 miles (11:00 pace) + Jillian Michaels 6 week 6 pack

Friday: 6 miles (aim for 10:45 pace)

So, I’m officially in training again. It feels like forever since I’ve been in training mode, but it also feels like just yesterday I was working toward the Country Music Marathon. It’s actually been about 3 months since that last race so I think this is perfect timing to start upping the mileage again. My legs are ready for it! In a very last minute decision I’ve decided to follow the Hanson Marathon method. I’m going to talk more about why I decided on that plan next week, but I kept reading it was the best plan to PR with and after training for a 4:30 finish for my first race and coming in at 4:44 and 4:52 for the two prior marathons I’m ready to finally get my goal!

One thing I will be doing outside the plan is maintaining strength work. I stopped doing it entirely with the Pensacola Marathon as I was hitting close to 50 miles some weeks and just exhausted. For the second marathon I cut back on mileage and maintained strength work. This time I’m hoping to keep high miles and some targeted core & upper body sessions. We’ll see how it goes! Tuesday I had a great speed session and did 10 400′s.

2014-07-15 07.37.24Thursday I ran with Travis (successfully this time!) and did some core work after I gave Salem a sweaty runners hug. I finally switched to 10 pound weights for Jillian Michaels 6 week 6 pack after using 8 for the last year or so. Yay!10409441_778971775458545_8288120985281067068_nMy food prep routine was a bit off this week since I only spent a few days in Pensacola before coming back to Alabama for a long weekend.  Before I left town I swung by Publix and grabbed some of my favorite snacks (sushi, artic zero and popchips!) plus some things to make meals to bring with me. I made baked falafel & humus pita’s (so good and can be eaten cold) and steamed almost 2 pounds of sweet potatoes in the microwave and added 2 cans of black beans to them. I seasoned the potatoes and beans with some adobo and will be eating about 2 cups for dinner with some laughing cow queso and fresh avocado. It’s nothing fancy, but it was super quick and easy to bring with me. 
2014-07-15 14.49.58I’m sharing this next photo out of pure vanity. My hair looked amazing yesterday.  We had unseasonably cool temperatures Thursday morning which made for a great run and nice curls! I had to replace the Redken ringlet I use whenever I want to work with my natural wavy/curly hair (I often work against it and straighten my hair for work) and I love the new version of the formula. The reviews on the website for it were terrible but as you can see it worked fine for me!
photo 5Finally, someone turned 8 years old this week! I left him on his actual birthday with Travis. I was a little bummed about it, but I also realize cats have zero conception of birthdays, so I didn’t feel like the worst kitty mother in the world. Little did I know Travis was throwing him a birthday party! I received this photo via text on Tuesday and just about died.

Aren’t they both perfect?

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This weekend will involve a lot of running, a little working/studying, an excessive amount of cuddling, and maybe even a trip to a water park. Throw in some BBQ and I’m pretty sure that’s the perfect July weekend. 

What are you doing this weekend?
Have you ever thrown a pet a party?